Sunday, December 31, 2006

Packed and Gone

It's Sunday and Aaron left yesterday for his Dad's. Thursday night we got him all packed up. Surprisingly, we got everything he wanted to take packed in his 2 suitcases, the biggest box the airline would allow and his 2 carry ons and wearing all of his coats. He was able to take all his clothes, toys and sports things he wanted. Even the cool new skateboard he got from Dave for Christmas. On Friday, I took off work early and we went to the movies and saw The Night at the Museum which was really good. Then we went to his favorite place for dinner, the Golden Corral. It's a buffet and he just eats and eats and always leaves happy. Then we went to Pojo's which is a local kids place with games and bumper cars and a beautiful carousel.

Bright and early Saturday, I took Aaron to the airport and he flew out on time and arrived safely in Reno, Nevada where his Dad picked him up. While we were at the airport and for the days before he left, we were catching up on episodes of our favorite podcast to listen to together, the Dawn and Drew show. I will miss sharing that with him.

Since then, I've heard from him often and he seems to be having fun with his Dad. It's bittersweet for me, I wish the best for him, but I've really never been away from him and it's hard having him so far away. We were able to record an episode of the Mind and Body cast, which is our podcast before he left so that was fun. I'm hoping to continue the show with him remotely either using his cell phone to call into Skype or Talkshoe to record us together.

I cleaned and organized like a madwoman on Saturday after Aaron left and moved his desk into his room and got his bedding all washed so his room is ready whenever he or a guest might need to use it. Cleaning always makes me feel better. I'm sure it's about the control of the environment and having everything in it's place when I'm an emotional wreck. Whatever th case, the house looks awesome!

Tonight, Dave and I are headed to Michelle and Gregg's for their annual New Year's Eve Party/Gregg's birthday party.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

New Year's Commitments

This year, I've decided to do some New Year's Commitments instead of resolutions. What's the difference? I have no idea. I just feel like all the things I want to do, I know I need to do and they're nothing new. I just need to commit to them and DO them.

So here goes:

Health & Body
* take all vitamins and supplements DAILY
* limit caffeine
* limit alcohol
* limit carbs/grains/sugars
* stay away from soda
* eat fresh fruits and vegetables EVERY day
* quit smoking for GOOD
* workout at least 3x a week
* follow the WW plan and count points every day
* weigh myself regularly
* ensure my dogs are fit and well trained (walks & regular training sessions)

* take time to spend with God and in His word each day
* read more
* use electronics less (laptop, blackberry, PC) - relax!
* watch less TV (cable goes off in Feb)
* podcast more
* blog regularly
* spend more time with friends
* keep in better touch with family
* be financially secure and investing wisely while giving generously
* continue to refine my parenting skills and be a terrific Mom

* spend more time at the office so I don't feel guilty about not working when I'm away
* be more committed to projects and taking responsibility for things maybe out of my "ownership"
* learn things that are challenging and perceived as "difficult" (cross-training)

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Why am I Here?

Well, the post Christmas depression set in last night. I'm not sure if it's just a sugar low but I sure felt bad. Aaron leaves in 4 days and I can't believe it. He's been with me emotionally for years before I got pregnant and from the moment I conceived with me physically. He'll be 12 in March, so that's a good long time. A lot of those years it was just him and I. His Dad hasn't spent more than a few days with him in over 10 years and I can't imagine how different his life is going to be after Saturday.

So last night I took a bath and tried to cheer myself up by doing some retail therapy and buying some stuff with Christmas checks. Then I talked with my girlfriend Wendy on the phone for quite some time. All the while, Aaron was at friends house playing a new video game that was received for Christmas. I guess I don't blame him for wanting to have fun and not be bothered by stupid things like chores around our house, I just thought he might want to spend some time with me before he left. I also usually forget he's a child and doesn't have adult emotions. Darn.

After I got off the phone and Aaron got home, I read and listened to a podcast for a bit. One of the things I heard was we are all here for a purpose. God has plans for each and every one of us. Well, what's my purpose? I always thought it was to be a mother. I suck at relationships and haven't been a very good daughter and I'm too closed off to be anyone's good friend, so what else is there? When I started podcasting, I thought, ah, this is it. This is my "purpose". But the newness wore off and it became frustrating as I tried to do more complicated things. I still enjoy it, but with Aaron moving away, it takes away a lot of the enjoyment out of it as it was something we did together. I'm still hoping to have him call in and us record using TalkShoe, but that involves a whole other level of technicality. Our most recent episode, I used a single headphone and the volume was so quiet, I had to enlist the help of one of my favorite podcasters Trucker Tom to help me figure out how to get the volume up. I've got all kinds of content, but the technical stuff stumps me. And that's what I do for a living! So what the heck am I here for? What good to I provide the world? I recycle and try to be friendly to the environment but that's about it. I attend church sporadically and don't have enough backbone to speak my mind about my religious beliefs to other people who believe differently or not at all.

So, I don't know. What's your purpose?

Posting in my blog so this can be feed to their site.

Monday, December 25, 2006

Santa Was Very Good to Me!

Here it is, Christmas day afternoon. The kids have all disappeared with their goodies and Dave is watching football. I turn to electronics as I sip a Fat Tire and prepare taco meat for Dave's birthday dinner.

Santa brought me 3 GREAT gifts from my Froogle wish list. Very cool. I got the memory card for the Blackberry Pearl that I bought myself for Christmas a few weeks ago. Now I can put MP3's and more pictures and video than I can stand on there. Also, it allows me to take 200+ pictures with the built in camera, instead of the 77 the 20mg on board card allows. I can also use it like a thumb drive for moving data around as I do with my ipod. Now I just need the cool Bluetooth headphones Dan sent me on Friday that will allow the Pearl's headset jack to be stereo on nice wireless headphones that you can talk on the phone with also. No more pausing the Ipod to answer the phone if it's all in one. I also got a heating blanket that's low wattage and supposedly not bad for you. Also, the coolest bedrest with a light, heater and massager and cup holder. Sweeet! Dave's mom got me the cutest doggie purse, I can hardly wait to take it to work tomorrow, it looks so real! Bobbi got me a beautiful pink columbia jacket. I wear the dark pink vest she got me almost constantly, but sometimes a girl needs arms :) Dan got me a leatherman, so I don't have to borrow his and Dave's all the time. Aaron promptly read the directions and quizzed me on how to use it. I guess without him around I should learn to fend for myself mechanically :( My friend Heather also got me a cool Fiskar's cutting system for scrapbooking and some cool toys for the girls.

Aaron got a skateboard, some games, a cool tool set and cash. Matt got money, Jeff got all Wii and DS stuff, Dave got a lot of food and gift certs and some wine and the girls got some new toys and treats and a new toy box.

The festivities started on Friday when the girls and I exchanged gifts at work. That was fun. Then the Mad Dogs in the afternoon. Saturday I was pretty sick and just stayed in my jammies and tried to rest up for the next two days. Sunday we all went to brunch at Dave's sisters and ate and talked. Sunday night we went to Bobbi's for an excellent lamb dinner, fancy stuffing and rice and a really good salad. I topped it off with too much toffee cuz boy did I have a stomach ache after all that! Today we did the stockings, waited for Matt to get up and come over and then opened gifts. It's been a nice quiet day.

I'm dreading going back to work tomorrow. I originally had the day off as Aaron was supposed to leave for his Dad's but now that's been postponed until Saturday the 30th.

My friend Cheryl's cute little Bentley is doing much better after his scare earlier this week where he had to be rushed to the vets because of low blood sugar. Chloe is still not eating as usual, but today she is off the 2nd pain med and is definitely acting more lively and not whining nearly as much. Now it's just been she's being a baby or wants something, not for pain, LOL

To all a Happy Holiday!

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Snow Advisory

Well, it's finally started snowing. I've been watching the radar and waiting since 11a today. I had to drive back to the vet's last night to get some additional pain killer for Chloe as she was just miserable. I really think she overdid running around in the yard with the first batch of snow we got on Friday. She is doing much better today and I took this picture of her earlier today. Chloe in the snow filled flower pot

Friday, December 22, 2006


So, I've switched my 3 day old blog over to google. I liked the Podshow page, but when I went back and revisited the header image and still couldn't get it to look right, I was frustrated. It just so happened Google released their blogger site out of beta and since I'm totally in bed with Google with gmail, google talk, google pages, google reader, orkut, browser sync, video, documents and searching, I figured what the heck. I love the template options and picked one that I think suits me. So, here I am.

I just realized that my first 3 posts came up backwards even though I changed their dates. Oh well, it'll be right going forward :)

I took Chloe back to the vet today to get more pain meds. She continued to cry and be uncomfortable all day and I just don't think she should have to suffer like that. So, she had her first dose and seems to be sleeping peacefully now. Thank Goodness. Now, if I could just get rid of this darned cold :(

Can't Get Past the Header Image

So here I am, trying to setup a blog on my favorite site - Podshow. I have a MySpace and Facebook and a personal website, but I love how Podshow makes everything simple. Except for how to make the header image look right. They give dimensions and I've gotten close to it and my image still looks scrunched. So instead of obsessing on that the rest of the afternoon, I thought I'd go ahead and post and get on with what I set out to do.

Growing up on 10 acres, when we finally got electricity I ask for a Commodore 64 for a gift. Who knows what started my geekiness, but even back then, I wanted a computer. For each holiday after I got the computer, I asked for different components. I was so excited when I got the 5.25" floppy drive so I could save my work. By 10 years old, I was keeping an electronic diary. I always hated writing because my mind goes so fast, that only my fingers on the keyboard come close to keeping up. I wish I still had that old media so I could read what I was thinking, but at some point over the moves in early adulthood, they are gone.
Today, I have a podcast with my 11 year old son Aaron. We started it this summer and though we only have 9 episodes out to date, it's been a lot of fun. I started listening to podcasts in the summer of 2005 and for Christmas that year, I got a video Ipod which I don't think has ever left my side since. I don't do much on the forums, I occasionally email a few podcasters and I've gotten on TalkShoe a few times but I really would like some way to communicate with others who are interested in knowing what's going on with me besides the mass emails that I do when I have big news.

For those who know me, know I hate to use the phone. I've had heavy phone usage jobs for the past 20 years and I think I've just burned out. I love email for communication, so I figure this blog is just the next step. There is a lot going on right now in my life so this is a perfect time to start sharing :) Happy Holidays everyone.
Shayna dressed for HTEH Christmas Party - Dec 06

Christmas 2006

This year, Christmas is going down a little differently than years past. Aaron doesn't have a list. He doesn't even want or need anything. So sad that he's so spoiled, but I guess it makes it easier to me. He's getting a plane ticket to his Dad's and some money on his pre-paid spending card for things he decides he wants later. My dogs are getting a new toy box, some toys and treats. They're easy. They love everything, even wrapping paper, ribbons and anything else that makes a nice noise when drug around the house or shredded.

This year, I've tried to focus more on giving to those who are truly less fortunate and being "green". If I have a gift in a brown box, it's getting a pretty ribbon and a name tag. No wrapping paper. The kids will enjoy tearing thru packing tape just as much as flimsy paper and scotch tape I'm quite sure. I've also sponsed a child thru I chose a little girl that share's Aaron's birthday but is 5 years younger. Her name is Nancy and she lives in Mexico. How fun it will be to correspond with someone from another country and I hope to be able to send her gifts in addition to my monthly contribution to her family. I also gave greener gifts. The National Wildlife Org has cool ornaments that when you buy, a tree is planted. The Greater Good Network has several different sites to which your purchases benefit different causes. My favorite is the animal rescue site because they not only have purple paws on most of the products, but they buy food for needy dogs. As I know my animals are the quite possibly the most spoiled in the world, I know they don't mind sharing some of their good life for other doggies in need.

On the personal side, Aaron is going to live with his Dad after Christmas. I've had full custody of him since he was about a year and a half old and this will be quite the change for both of us. He's had a very difficult year and despite all my efforts, his BiPolar and ADHD continue to be more of a challenge than I can handle each day. His Dad is confident he can manage him and perhaps having a male role model / authority figure in his life will be the thing that he's been missing. We've always been together and really close since I've been a single mom most of his life so I'm not quite sure how it's going to be after he goes. My family is not being supportive of my decision, but they are hundreds of miles away and don't know how rough this year has been. I know they mean the best, but it is very hurtful when people that you love and hope to hear supportive things from are only criticial. But, it is what it is.

Since moving out of Dave's house in September, this Christmas has been more of a challenge logistically. I ended up with a tree from Nevada that my friend's boyfriend intended for his daughter but she ended up not needing. It is nice to have a real tree is that is what I grew up having and it's been odd at Dave's for the past 5 years having an artificial. Getting it in the stand was challenging, but it's finally up and has some lights and ornaments on it, so I guess it's good. It will be very sad to put away all the decorations and colorful lights in my newly empier, quiet house after Aaron leaves. My mom always used to leave Christmas stuff up for months afterward and now I understand why. There is just something cheerful and nice about the lights and decorations. I have thought that I may keep the lights up in my bedroom as they work really well as a night light and keep me comforted. Dave's oldest son Matt is home from U of I and his new girlfriend Sandy flies in from her hometown on the 30th. I think they are staying at Dave's so it will be nice to spend some time with her and get to know her a bit. I do know she has dogs, so that's a plus in my book :) Jeff has been vacant since hitting teenagedom last year and hopefully he'll have the Wii out for the families entertainment. I'll take pictures, make more food than anyone can possibly eat and probably overinduldge on goodies.

My heart goes out to the Kim family who recently lost James Kim in Oregon during a drive to visit family over Thanksgiving. The technology community has had an incredible outpouring towards his family and I am saddened each time I think of the story and wonder how a young mother with two small children will get thru this first holiday season with her husband and her kid's father. When my step-dad died 3 years ago, that first holiday was very melancholy and each year around the time of his passing, I am saddened by the thought that he is no longer "there". This is also my grandmother's 2nd Christmas without my grandfather. My Papa was a wonderful man and always had a blow up Santa that he would love to play with us grandkids each year. I love to look at pictures and remember all the good times. I have tons of video tapes that I need to transfer to digital so I can share them with other family members and that is on my things to do this Winter after Aaron leaves. I also hope to take a class at George Fox University. And maybe even join the Liberty Fitness center which is nearly in my front yard. They have a cool massage table that I think might motivate me to go use :)

Our Christmas Tree

My Little Chloe

Chloe is my 2nd female Havanese who turned a year old on December 12th of this year. Since she came into heat in November, it was time to get her spayed this month. I took her in yesterday to Intermountain Vet and dropped her off first thing in the morning. Chloe is a very cuddly, loving dog, but kind of shy. She was excited to see the people in the vet's office, but didn't like them to get too close. When I passed her off to the Nurse, she gave me her patented "stink eye". Unlike Pepper, who loves everyone and would go home with anyone who gave her the time of day Chloe is a mommies girl. She has a particular disklike of men, but seemed to be ok with the vet who she had met before when she came in for shots.

I waited anxiously for the Vet to call yesterday and they did when she got out of surgery. She did great and her blood work came back good, so that will be handy for the future if she has any problems that require a comparison. It started snowing late in the afternoon, so I left work early and it took over an hour to get to Meridian, which is normally a 20 minute drive. When I picked her up, she was still drowsy but gave me some nose kisses and a low tail wag so I knew all was well. In the car ride home, she sat quietly in the back seat, looking around for her sister who is always with us during car rides but Pepper was waiting at home.

Dave came over to visit Chloe and held her in his lap while we watched a movie. She slept peacefully and went out to go potty, but didn't eat her dinner. She left ok, but whimpered periodically. Last night it snowed about 2 more inches and her and Pepper went and played outside and since then, Chloe has been whimpering despite the fact that I finally got her pain pill down her after several attempts and her promptly spitting it out. My cold also came back with a vengance yesterday afternoon so when I woke up to snow and my cold and a wimpering dog, I decided not to go to work. Well, my friends all have my gifts here and there is the annual Mad Dogs awards today so I didn't want to miss that, so I emailed Bobbi who lives only 2 miles from me. I drove to her house after the roads were somewhat clear and she gave me a ride to work.

Michelle, Deanna, Jamie and I all exchanged gifts which was a lot of fun. I'll post the pictures this weekend up on my Webshots. I'm feeling better now and glad I came in to join the festivities. Aaron has called several times saying Chloe is whimpering so he's been wrapping her in her favorite blanky and holding her to help comfort her. He just called and said he's going outside to play in the snow with his friend, so I told him to put her on my bed where I've left the heating blanket on for her. Mad Dogs doesn't last long and I should be home in a few short hours to comfort her and keep her warm.

Chloe has been a wonderful addition to the family and I also made a new friend because of her. Last year, I responded to a post of someone needing a Home Visit in Idaho for them to be able to adopt a rescue. I responded and went to visit a family. In doing that, I volunteered to become an Idaho contact person for the Havanese Rescue. Little did I know, another woman in town had volunteered to do the home visit on the family I did, so when I signed up, the contact in WA sent Heather to visit my home. We immediately bonded and found out our dogs were sisters from different litters. Her Kaera and my Pepper are a year apart and one looks like Mom and one like Dad. Heather and I are nearly the same age, are both neat and tidy (ok, anal) and love to talk. We've been great friends ever since and I see her whenever I can. So, thru Heather, I got Chloe. Heather, who is friends with Tonisha of Hystyle Havanese in Oregon, was going to pick up her Tootsie Pop the following weekend from when we met. She mentioned there was another girl available in the same litter and Dave and I talked about it and immediately requested pictures. We fell in love with her sweet face and Heather brought her home to us on her own birthday, Feb 28. Pepper immediately fell in love with Chloe just as we did and took wonderful care of her and shared everything and played gently with her. She even taught her to ring the bell to go out and how to properly shred and destroy anything left around the house suitable for dogs.

Before I got Chloe, I had been listening and reading about raw feeding and when I found out Chloe was coming from a breeder who raw fed and after talking with Heather about it, immediately switched Pepper over and have been feeding them raw ever since. I am continuially amazed at the difference in thier coats and their excitement over mealtime. When Pepper ate kibble, she would frequently go 3-4 days without eating and only out of desperation eat her kibble. Now, every meal is exciting and they love to eat. And I know the food I am giving them is best suited for them and healthy and not a bunch of corn and grain filer which brings the dog no nutritious value. So, Heather has Tootsie Pop and I have Chloe who are sisters as well as our Pepper and her Kaera. Heather also has Tico, a a male Havanese and Taeya a beautiful german shephard. We get the dogs together for play dates and grooming sessions (Heather has been teaching me to groom them myself since I got the 2nd dog so I can save costs) and she even babysat them and Aaron during the HTEH company Christmas party this year. It's nice to have a great friend to share our doggies with :)
Aaron and Chloe - Aug 06