My continued attempts to SLOW down the world

Much to my surprise, I realized that I cannot slow down the world. It just keeps going! Damn Newton and his laws of physics! However, I can slow myself.

Yesterday, I was dealing with the side effects of changing the medications for my thyroid. My heart was racing and I was shaking like I was going through withdrawal from something. I felt dizzy and I couldn’t concentrate. My friend invited me to stop working and come to her ice creame party at work. I decided to do that. I left early and went to the ice cream party. Still dizzy, still shaky. I only stayed a bit, but it did my soul a wonder. I tried to exercise and got a full session in, but it was very hard for me to slow my heartrate. I then took Luna’s skates to be embiggened. Ok, proper term is "popped out". No, I am not joking. I guess you can stretch the skates to 1-2 size bigger to help a child fit in them longer. Since I blew the bank of these skates last year ($70) I am hoping I can get them to last longer. I had a bit before I picked up the kids. I swung by my hair dresser and she could take me. Ah! A quick trim later, I was out of there and happy! 

See? I slowed down!

Today I am working from home. I did a fit of work this morning that left me very busy, then took a break to make peach fruit roll-ups. We had so many fresh and ready to eat peaches that I figured I better do something with them! In another 9 hours, they should be done! (they are dehydrating in the oven). I wish it wasn’t so warm today because I am leaving the oven on 180 for 10 hours, but I am afraid they will go bad if I wait for Saturday. Since I’m crazy (lots of proof of that), I colored one tray blue, one red with blue swirls and one natural (orange) with a really nice blue swirl.

This is hard to slow down, but I need to. I need to remember that I am good at what I do, I am a good mom, a good wife and in general, a good person.

But I can be all of this slower, right?

Some quieter thoughts.

Life is always a jumble in early September. Everything starts again: school, work ramps up, temple school, girl scouts, other activities, Jewish high holy days; the list goes on. Now that we are entering the end of September and have just one holy day left (Monday-Yom Kippur), I am finding things are slowing. We are still trying to get Soleil to stop trying to do everything in one day. I sometimes break out in a chorus of "Life in One Day" by Howard Jones to her. She hates that!

Unfortunately, she gets it from me. Yes, I try to fit everything into my life in several small packages and will often juggle more than I can handle. I have been trying to slow down mentally and physically. I don’t want to go back in time where the woman stayed home, I just want to relax more (hmmm. a Theme?) So I have been trying. My supervisor has not been helping and I am starting to learn how to say "No, I will not take your guilt trip". He has been jumping on somethings since early June and it is starting to annoy me. For the first time in 6 years I made a particular mistake of emailing the wrong list. He was all over me in minutes on that one. He’s done some other things like that. I need to learn to let him slide off. I can and have spoken to my senior supervisor if I need to, but I really don’t like it coming to that.

I get to play single parent this week. Jay is actually only 25 miles away in Boston. But he is staying in town as he is running a meeting. I am keeping it all together. Not sure how, but I am.

I really want to start working on my book again. I’ve totally given up on the 1month=1novel concept. However, I am exploring the ideas of the story and plot in my head more and I think I am coming up with a much more solid story. The one thing that worries me is that the main character commits suicide (not really a shocker, so IF I ever finish it and IF you ever read it? Yeah, forget that I told you). I recently read an article where the interviewee’s mother had written a 350 page book where the main character commits suicide. Um, yeah. Listen, NOT looking at doing this myself. I am taking a very simple true life story and filling in a hell of alot of the background that really didn’t exist. Isn’t it silly that I worry about this? Hmm, perhaps not. I was the mom of a 4 month old who didn’t want to tell anyone that I was running into post partum depression because I was sure that DSS would take her away from me.

Anyway, if I can find some time, I would like to work on my book some more. But not today. Because I am not going to live my life in one day.

Dear Thyroid


I know, you don’t want to face the blame. It was my parents. They are the ones who fed me local veggies before being a localvore was cool. We ate corn, and beans and peas and strawberries and apples and asparagus and all sorts of locally grown foods. How were my parents to know that Western New York is known as "the Goiter Belt"? That the soil is deficient in iodine and other chemicals needed to regulate proper thyroid control.

You are a very small organ. I know.Being small doesn’t mean that you aren’t important. You run and regulate my entire metabolism. But right now, you are causing some seriously havoc on my system. You are driving me crazy. After months of having a week of insomnia at a time, I saw my Ob/Gyn. Fortunately, she wanted to do a regular CBC. Fine with me! I always ask for a TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone) check while I am getting blood taken. No point not to! And my results came back with a "Normal" 1.02. Oh Thank you little thyroid! You and I both know that I only function in the 2.5-3.5 range! Anything higher is hell on me (hypothyroid) and anything lower is hell (hyperthyroid). Great. My dose of thyroid meds has made your hyperactive. Damn you! Now I changed my meds to the dose 1 level lower. Wait 5 weeks. Get more blood drawn, but this time by the phlebologist named Stephanie Meyer. Can you really stop bruising my arm? Yeah? thanks.

Now my TSH is 4.5. Hypothyroid. I am trying to do the lower dose pills most days and the higher dose pills the other days. This is insane.

Listen. I just want my body back. I am finally working out and getting some kick ass muscles. And then you go "psycho" on me and I gain about 8 lbs in 8 weeks. WTF? I really really don’t need this. I need the weight to go away, my sleep and libido get back to normal and YOU, Ms thyroid, to start behaving again!.




Trying to write more.

I really am trying to read and write more on the Internet. The other day my boss saw me NOT WORKING AT WORK! Or so he thought! I was running a code that takes less than 5 minutes to run. This is the optimum time for it to be too short to do something else and too long to sit waiting for it. So I was surfing to a web board. He thought I was playing games. I have been so busy that I haven’t blogged at work for a while (and at home I am too exhausted to do it) so now I need to be careful when I decide to write! 

I am still working on ways to slow down. I am currently home with Luna while Jay and Soleil are off at temple celebrating Rosh Hannah. I am not very religious (read atheist) and I don’t feel the need to go. Luna’s asleep and I am on the web. Is this slowing down? Not sure. But I am enjoying it!

There’s so much going on in my mind these days. A friend of mine just finished and then self published a book and is selling it on Amazon. Interesting way to do things. Meanwhile I don’t even have time to work on my book. I did discover a whole new ending while I was on the flight home from Brazil. I have some great ideas if I only could get back to writing it!

I am still overly involved in the Girl Scouts, and my temple’s young family group (note to self, arrange steering committee meeting) and I am helping Luna start in a girl scout troop. Oh yeah, and we have piano (Luna) and violin (Soleil) and ice skating (Luna) and ice hockey (Soleil) Sigh

I am thinking of escaping this weekend up to Vermont. There is a famous baking supply store up in Vermont and I think I want to go this weekend. It’s a 2.5 hour drive, but now that some trees are turning, it might be worth it. And the 50% off sale doesn’t hurt.

I am sorry there is less snark these days. The spacecraft is pounding me and I really have been having some depression crap hitting me. But I will be back.


I promise

Title goes here

First, thank you for all the good thoughts and prayers for Maddy. She is home and recovering nicely!

My neighbor had a great job. He was working for a large financial firm as a middle manager. He had to get up early and come home late some nights, but he had a nice lifestyle. Then, the great Madoff collapse came and he was one of 3,000 laid off. Imagine going into work and having the pink slip. Lovely. Not a thing that is too uncommon these days.

So his wife switched from part time to full time. He was "stay at home dad". He started his new gig in March and now he is looking for a new job, except…he kind of likes the slower lifestyle. He likes being home. He made a comment to me that has stuck in my brain. "If you have kids, you really need to not work so you can have time for yourself and your kids." He is right.

It makes me think. I wish I could have more time. I wish we weren’t a go-go-go society.

How can we slow the world down? any ideas?


The ghosts of 9/11

I always wonder if Bin Laden chose 9/11 because it was our emergency phone number. Or because 11 stood tall and strong like the twin towers. Or was this just a random day chosen out of the twisted hatred in his mind?

Today, Soleil read the headlines in the Boston Globe. 

"Mom? What’s special about September 11?"

"well, about 8 years ago, some people who hated America took some airplanes and flew them into buildings"


"because they hated America. Sometimes people who hate fail to stop and think about how evil they are being"

Luna chimed in: "What happened to the people in the building?"

"some escaped. Uncle K was there. He was in the hotel between the two buildings. He left the hotel and watched and reported until he couldn’t watch anymore. He left and the buildings fell down right after he left"

"was he okay?"

 "Yes, but we didn’t know that for a while because everybody was calling everybody"

"well, at least people got out of the building!" (Soleil is always looking for the bright side)

"Actually, honey, almost 3,000 people died that day. The people on the lower floors got out."

Luna: "why not the high floors? Too many stairs?"

"no they couldn’t get past the floors where the planes hit"

We talked about the Pentagon, flight 93 and how those passengers sacrificed themselves. We talked about the two flights, flight 11 and flight 175 leaving Boston.

We talked about airplane security and how they understood that this is why we have to take off our shoes and jackets and why their stuffed animals need x-rays at the airport.

"We’re safe now, right mom?"

I don’t know guys. I really don’t know. Seeing what is going on in America with congressmen showing blatent disrespect for our president? Seeing people bringing religion and race into politics again? I just don’t know.

This parenting thing can get tough.

Please keep Maddy in your thoughts today

One of my Brownie Scouts it undergoing surgery today. A large branch fell on her earlier this week and crushed her left orbit and nose. Her skull is fractured and she has some bone in her brain.

Please keep her in your thoughts today. So far, there have been no indications that she has any eye or brain damage. Let’s hope the results continue to show this!



Still in September Hell (A bitch post. Because it’s my blog and I can bitch if I want!)

Seriously? Has it been 10 days since I last wrote? I have so many posts in my head, but I am still in GAH! land. We are starting a new employee on Monday, so I have been literally swamped since J, my last co-worker started his new job. I also have my annual review next week. I think I need to express the sheer stress of this job to my boss. I am wavering on letting him know about my depression. I believe these are seriously connected at this point. But I also feel that it is none of his damn business to know that I have depression. And that I will be playing the "oh, poor Nance, she’s depressed" card. I have a week to decide.

Add to this, Jay has been summoned to a space weather  meeting (yes, there is such a thing, check out ) at Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC or just plain Goddard) next week. He leaves Tuesday night and returns late Thursday. I have a meeting for the Girl Scouts Tuesday night and I need to take the girls. I need a sitter for Wednesday night because I have to go for Luna’s back-to-school night. Yeah, next week.

The following week is the "10 years of Chandra Science" meeting that Jay must be at everyday. He has been on the organizing committee and he will be staying in Boston Monday, Tuesday and possibly Wednesday. I have a book club on Monday that I want to go to. Yep, another sitter. Then on Thursday, I have a Girl Scout meeting in my house for the parents. Sigh. Jay has a science meeting on a particular target that night, so I need someone to hang with the girls. At the moment? It looks like Mr. Verizon Fios is going to babysit them upstairs while I hold the meeting downstairs.

And Girl Scouts? Well, last year my co-leader had a baby, so she couldn’t do much. This year? Her daughter had a terrible freak accident Tuesday (PLEASE PLEASE keep this child in your thoughts and prayers if you pray). A large tree branch fell on her head, shattering her left orbit and her nose. She was very lucky and never blacked out, no damage to her left eye (except the muscles are attached to the broken bones) and no brain damage that they have found. She undergoes surgery tomorrow. So, I am placing NOTHING on my co-leader for a good few months because, how could I do that to her? Seriously? Her poor daughter (one of our scouts). I worry about her.

So yeah, I am overloaded and I have gained 5-8 lbs out of sheer stress the last 2 months. This isn’t good. I need to chill!


I will leave you with an AWESOME PHOTO of the first day of school! (Soleil, Friend, Luna)


Days 4 &5 in Brazil

Sorry for the lack of posting. We had a jam packed week of spacecraft activities and then an error on Friday that woke me up early. I’ve been pretty busy, BUT the spacecraft is happy and healthy again.

On Day 4 of Brazil, we went to the Botanical Gardens. This was set up over 200 years ago. ABSOLUTELY BEAUTIFUL! We took the metro to the meeting in the morning. The girls saw a playground they wanted to visit so I said yes, after we did the morning at the meeting. The girls took their places by a TV (seriously? How can kids watch the same darn show OVER and OVER and OVER…?) and I did some networking and more posters.

We went to the playground where two boys were playing. My girls jumped in and the mom their (or grandmother, hard to tell) told them to watch for the mud at the end of the slide. Of course she said it in Portuguese and we worked out that I could understand a little and she and I were able to discuss that all 4 kids were crazy.  Finally, we went back to the conference center for a taxi. Our driver got lost, but we did end up at the gardens. We got a lunch and the kids wanted to play with a stray gato (cat), but I wouldn’t let them. I gave the cat some bread, but he wanted something else. Oh well. The gardens were AMAZING. We spent a few hours exploring, but after 3 hours, I noticed I was getting a headache and having some difficulties with focusing my eyes.

I was able to hail a cab back to our hotel and we met up with Jay. At this point, I checked and I had another eye infection. Frick. Serious eye infection. The eyeballs were actually swelling. This has now happened 3 times when I have traveled and new pollens reach my eyes with my new contacts. I love this contacts because they correct my astigmatism, BUT this infection rate has got to stop. I did bring Soleil’s eye drops (she sometimes gets tear duct infections due to a congenital issue) and I checked the packaging. I could use them every hour if needed. So I switched to glasses and went to Pao de A├žucar (Sugar Loaf). This rock structure was amazing and we were able to have a wonderful sunset there!

The next day was insane as we had a visit from the doctor so I could get MY eye drops (the ones with the steroids) Not good. We finally got them, but most of the day, we hung around the hotel while I had horribly sore eyes. They were so swollen that moving my eyes (which you do ALL OF THE TIME) was painful.

Finally we got that done. However, Jay has given me the go ahead to start to plan Lasik surgery. I have an appointment tomorrow to see if I am a candidate. We can’t have me getting these infections all of the time.

We did visit the "Statue"- which gets it’s own post!

And that was days 4&5 in Brazil!