Thursday, April 23, 2009

If I don't return, please send a search party.

On Monday I spent the day with 'Joseph' the Dell Tech support guy. I am not going to make any comments about the fact that we all know his name is really not 'Joseph' and that he resides in India. He was a very nice man and I really did understand 90% of what he said. Hey, he speaks 2 languages, I only speak one so who am I to complain?

What I did not like, however, was what 'Joseph' had to tell me. He said the reason my DVD/CD Rom drive keeps dying is because of a software problem. It is not a hardware problem. This was the 4th time I have had to call Dell and have them work some sort of computer telepathy magic to make my DVD/CD Rom drive work again. I tried to watch what they were doing when they took over my computer but they are too fast.

Finally, I asked 'Joseph' how we make sure this does not happen again. It is very inconvenient as my daughter does her math, via Teaching Textbooks on my computer daily. He said -and it pains me to repeat it- my computer will need to be re formatted, or have it's operating system re installed, or it's flux capacitor re aligned or something. All I know is that I will have to spend an entire day backing up EVERYTHING on my computer because once 'Joseph' does whatever he is going to do, all the important stuff on my computer will no longer be on my computer.

I am telling you all this because I think it might be possible that if this whole thing goes badly, I may fall into a rip in the space/time continuum, never to be heard from again.

If that is the case, it was a good ride and I'll see you all on the other side. If all goes well, I'll be back in a few days with a new and improved operating system, or flux capacitor or something...

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


My Sister and her husband are going to Maui for 7 days.

My Sister in Law is accompanying her husband on a business trip where she gets the hotel room to herself for 3 days and they get to spend the evenings alone.

My best friend is going to Palm Springs with her sister and her husband to baby sit their baby while they have a mini vacation. She gets to spend a week in a beautiful house doing nothing but playing with her adorable baby nephew. And swimming. And going for walks. In Palm Springs.

Know what I am doing this week? Laundry. And perhaps scrubbing a toilet. I believe I may be having some sort of attitude problem. I'm feeling a little snarky. I think a trip to the mountains, or the beach, or anywhere where there is no laundry is in order. That would fix me right up. Sir D? Are you reading this? Hello? Hello?

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Monday, April 20, 2009

Oh No!

My girls are sitting in the RV, which is sitting in our driveway, doing their schoolwork.

One of them is wearing a skirt and the other has her long hair braided down her back.

We are those wierd homeschoolers. How'd this happen?

Friday, April 17, 2009

THE camper.

I am going to tease you with a few photos of our new camper. I am so excited. I have decided to be excited and forget the cushion. It's only money, right? RIGHT?

I think the lack of joy in the past few days might, perhaps, have had a hormonal component...ahem. Thanks for the laughs and encouraging words.

The floor plan

The outside

A few shots of the inside

We pick her up tomorrow...

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Stealing my Joy…

This Saturday Sir D and his Brother D are going to pick up our new RV. I should be excited…I should be Joyful. I am not.

Summer is coming. School will be done. I should be Joyful. I am not.

The first Teenager is inching up on adult hood. Soon he will be 18. He will be a man. Most of my work will be done…I should be joyful. I am not. There are things stealing my joy.

For one, the economy. Sir D and I have been saving for the last two years for this RV. We are ready. We are prepared. But the thing is the economy is scary right now. People are losing jobs, losing their houses, times are really tough. Sir D is not in danger of losing his job, but the economy is definitely having an effect on our bottom line. We are not in danger of losing our house, but there is something about having a cushion. I like a big cushion. We are about to spend some of our big cushion and then it will be a little cushion. Little cushions steal my joy.

I should be thrilled about summer coming. The thing is, we have more school left to do than we have school year left to do it in. This happens every year and I freak out about it every year and the earth does not stop spinning, but it steals my joy.

I need summer. I need to focus on my house and scour everything in it and put everything back in its place and organize and clean and clean and clean! I NEED summer, but I am not ready for school to be done! We have not done enough. Joy…being stolen.

Then there is The Teenager…who got yet another speeding ticket. *sigh* The Teenager is stressing me out. We’re working on a little Reality Discipline here on the Hilltop. When you’re 10 and you leave your bike out (repeatedly) and it gets stolen, Reality Discipline means you must earn the $ for another one. Your parents don’t bail you out.

When your almost 18 and you’ve gotten 3 tickets in less than a year it means you must start paying for your own insurance and thus you must get a job and you get to spend less time on school which the Mom/Teacher thinks is not a good thing. But the Mom/Teacher is not always the one making the decisions. The Dad/Principal gets to weigh in on this one. Again with the joy stealing.

So we’re looking for a little Joy here in the Hilltop. I think I am going to look up all the Joy verses. I am going to find something funny to watch on the TV tonight. I am going to read the funnies. I need to laugh.

Got a good joke? Lay it on me…please.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Good Friday

He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; by his wounds you have been healed. 1 Peter 2:24

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Happy Pills

I mentioned a few days ago of my frustration with the meds not working. I even whined a little I believe. Well, I went to visit my Rheumatologist yesterday and had quite an interesting experience.

First of all, he did not like my theory that the medicine he has me on is messing with my immune system. He said there have been no studies that back up my theory. Pish posh. I don’t need no stinking studies! I stand by my theory and when someone does do a study linking this medicine to decreased immune function I’m going to be shouting ‘I TOLD YOU SO’ from the mountain top (or at least my little Hilltop).

He also told me I had to stay on it because, while it may not be helping all my joint pain, it is keeping the nasty overactive white blood cells from destroying the lining of my brain and lungs and heart and whatnot. I guess that’s something.

He did switch my anti-inflammatory however. He thinks that will help. Okay, whatever. I just take whatever they give me, like the little guinea pig that I am.

I headed to the pharmacy, grabbed my new meds then ran back home to get Ann and drive her downtown to Scottish Rite. I popped the new pill on the way. In hindsight I can see that taking a new medicine for the first time on the day I have to drive downtown is probably not the most intelligent thing I’ve ever done. I got downtown just fine, but as I was sitting in the waiting room I started feeling a little funny, lightheaded if you will.

I pulled out the pamphlet that came with my new medicine to see if dizziness was a side effect. Yes, yes it is a side effect…of the anti seizure med I just ingested.

Hummm? Odd. I’ve never had a seizure. Why would the Dr give me an anti seizure med to help with inflammation?

I called the pharmacist to ask them this question. The answer? He didn’t. The pharmacy got the medicine wrong. YIKES!

The pharmacist assured me that it would not harm me, after he learned I had only taken one dose. Well, good thing I read the thing! I went back in to the pharmacy to take back the wrong med and get the right one. Interestingly, I was not angry. I was rather peaceful about the whole thing…people make mistakes, no big deal, they fixed it.

Later in the day, when I told Sir D, he became angry and then I became angry. That was dangerous! What if they’d given me something bad? It could have killed me! Sir D was surprised I handled it so well and did not yell at the pharmacist.

I mentioned this mishap to a friend who told me that that particular anti seizure med has a ‘mood enhancer’ in it.

Ahhh! Now it makes since. I guess the pharmacy learned that if you screw up someone’s meds at least give them the happy pills!

Needless to say, I’ll be checking my meds from now on!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Want some cheese with that?

I've been a little absent from the Hilltop lately. I don't exactly know why. I think it may have something to do with the whole 'if you don't have something nice to say...' thing.

Everywhere is bad news, everywhere is sadness and frustration and pain. Generally, people read blogs to find the funny, the lighthearted. Things haven't been so funny or lighthearted here on the hilltop lately so I've kept it to myself.

Nothing earth shattering or tragic...just frustrating.

I've been on some new meds for my newly discovered and thought to be many other things in the past illness; Sjogren's Syndrome. When I was finally given a definitive diagnosis and a treatment I was almost euphoric. FINALLY! I didn't' realize just how much hope I was placing on that one little pill...that is not working.

What it is doing is effecting my immune system. In the 2 and a half months I have been taking the little pill that is not helping my pain, I have had 3 head colds, 2 24 hour stomach viruses and an infection requiring antibiotics. The thing is, I NEVER get sick. I just don't catch stuff or get infections. The last time I can remember having any sort of infection was a kidney infection during my pregnancy with Will 17 years ago. As for the virus! SHEESH! I have had more illnesses in the last 2 months than I have had in the last 2 years.

I might almost be able to tolerate it if the meds were working, but so far...nothing. I still have a great deal of pain. I was in so much pain last week that I was limping along leaning on my grocery cart at Walmart like an 80 year old. I was going so slowly that I was overtaken and passed by the grandpa in the motorized cart!

So see? That's why the posts have been a little infrequent. I am trying to be positive and not be a whiner. Who wants to hang out with a whiner and I don't really want to run off my 2 regular readers.

On the up side (because please let there be an upside somewhere!) I think we may have found our RV! It is not the one Sir D really wanted but it's a nice second choice and it's cheaper which I am all for!

I'll keep you updated on our RV search and soon, hopefully, I'll have photos to show you of our new house on wheels!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Fog...on Crack

I thought I'd show you some photos of our Arkansas camping trip. There were three families, all pulling RV's up the mountain to Queen Wilhelmina State Park. It's basically up a mountain on twisty turney roads. Not usually a big deal but the thing is, we were pulling a 32 foot house behind our car and we drove directly into a cloud. I have never in my life seen fog like this. It was like fog...on crack. You could not see 20 feet in front of you. That is scary when the roads have a tendency to make sharp, unexpected turns and if you were to miss the turn you'd go over the mountain and plummet to your death. And a car pulling a house can't stop on a dime.

Once we got to the camp sites we pulled in and all we could see was the camp site we were at. We couldn't see beyond them at all. The problem with this is I happened to know that we were on the top of a mountain and at some point there had to be a descent. Perhaps a sharp drop off, maybe even right across the street.

We did not let the kids explore, in fact I got nervous when the got up from the picnic table. Lucky we got there late so we didn't have much time till bedtime.

When we got up in the morning we realized that here was a huge field across from us on one side and a forest on the other. It was quite beautiful once we could see it.

So I learned something on that trip. I can never live in London.

Finally, toward the very end of the day, the sun started to peak through the clouds right before it set. It was eerie to say the least.