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June 24, 2009

Childhood flashback…ugh!

Filed under: History, Personal, Pregnancy — Tags: , , , — llcall @ 2:36 am

I am supposed to be at Disneyland at this very moment.  So I am none too pleased to be sitting at my parents’ house in Southern California, trying anything to keep myself entertained while others enjoy Splash Mountain.  Why am I not at Disneyland, you ask?

Have I ever told you about the wicked bad eczema I had as a child?  This is no joke.  It covered me from head to toe when I was about 4 years old…even my face and scalp (must have been hideous; luckily my big brother broke the camera 🙂 ). 

I suppose I should be very glad that it only plagued me in my 4th and now 29th years, but I confess that I do not feel relieved.  My whole body is so itchy that I can’t even think about anything else…and I wake up every 1 to 1.5 hours when the itch just won’t be ignored.  This is about week 2 of this problem and so far, it is only getting worse.

I realize that in the whole scheme of my life and health, this should be no big deal considering I’ve spent hours strapped to backboards, had burning needles inserted into my neck, and the like, but for the love of pete, this itching is so incessant.  It just won’t be denied!  What’s a girl to do to salvage a Southern California vacation?


June 7, 2009

Happy 26th Monthiversary!

So way back in April I bemoaned the fact that we had to take an anniversary raincheck.  Now that I have done some big-time cleaning and relocated our digital wedding pictures AND it’s our 26-monthiversary, I thought it was a fine day for a virtual celebration.

Some things have changed in 26 months:

35540030Like for the life of me I cannot remember to wear this wedding ring.  I wear it for a few days and then take it off and it ends up in my bathroom drawer for a few months, then on a bookshelf, etc.  I suspected that being a non-jewelry wearer would be mitigated by a wedding ring, but this turns out not to be the case.

And some things haven’t changed:

Like I'm still IN LOVE with these D.C. chicken salad sandwiches from Corner Bakery

Like I’m still IN LOVE with these D.C. chicken salad sandwiches from the Corner Bakery.

And I'm still mourning the fact that I didn't get a slice of this cheesecake

And I’m still mourning the fact that I didn’t get a slice of this cheesecake.

But mostly that I’m still in love with my dress, the ambience, the pictures, everything!  So enjoy a few with me:

100_4821date removed--kissing neal--wedding35500016bishop's gardentemple doors3552002135520022

And the pièce de résistance…our favorite:


(Wow, selecting pictures was harder than I thought.  It was like choosing between my own children.  I just love D.C. at Cherry Blossom time!  Pictured: Kenwood in Maryland–a great spot for amazing blossoms and not coincidentally, the site of our first date (which Neal was too clueless to know was a date—story for another day); Bishop’s Garden at the National Cathedral; and the Washington, D.C. LDS Temple)

June 2, 2009

“I have a kid out there”

Meet Michael, a 19-year-old African American from the South side of Chicago.  He never met his mother.  He barely knew his father.  He spent the first years of his life with his paternal grandmother, who would sometimes give him “whoopins.”  Starting at age nine, he moved in and out of group homes, with the occasional juvy stint beginning at age 10.  At 15, he got his own apartment through the state’s independent living program for foster kids.  And, in his own words, “from there on I’ve been in jail.”   [NOTE: My questions are italicized.]

So are there things that as you leave [jail] that you want to try to do differently than you’ve done in the past?

Ah yeah.  I mean, just basically I’ma keep on, keeping track of my goals, you know.  I have a kid out there.  Just thinking what’s the most important to me.

And what would you say is the most important thing to you?

Family.  Think about them, think about my family.  Keep going to school, keep working.  I shouldn’t have time to mess up.

Do you have a son or a daughter?

It’s a girl.

How old is she?

She will be born in January.

Do you have any particular resources or strategies you plan to use when you get out to help you get back into everything and transition?

I’m gonna to either go to the hospital, go to their parenting classes.  Or I know the Clinic, they got a lot of parenting things, I go to there. . . . I’m gonna try to get a couple jobs and not too much worry about what I’m wearing [the area he is most tempted to spend his money].

I kinda, just the first, like, she [his girlfriend] told me she was pregnant I kinda put away money.  The baby money and trying not to touch it.  I have touched it, but I try not to.

Michael is just one example of the people that surprise you, even astonish you.  Some of the men we met don’t pay much attention to the flesh-and-blood children they have living down the street from them.  And the ones that do are usually older, thirties and forties.  They’ve taken years to get their “craziness” out and decide that they want to leave a better legacy for their children than criminal behavior or drug addiction.  But here is a 19 year old, planning for his baby girl, not to be born for another five months [this was in August].  And not just any 19 year old, but one who has never experienced a loving, intact family.

So you tell me, how do you decide that family is the most important thing when you’ve barely even seen it?  How do you decide that jail is not for you anymore, when it’s about all you’ve experienced in your 19 years?

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