Halloween 2008

11:59 PM Edit This 1 Comment »

For Halloween I took the kids to the indoor playground at the Mountlake Terrace Pavilion for the Little Pumpkin Party. The fee was kind of steep, $13 per kid but I figured it was ok since we weren't doing anything else dress up and it sounded craft centered rather than focused on candy. Well, as with most days I over booked. We had been sick the week before and were just getting back into the swing of things. This was only our second time out in a week and the kids didn't feel like moving fast at all. It was hard to get everyone suited up and out the door but we did and we made it with 30 min left of a two hour party we already paid to go to. They refunded us half the price and let the kids go play in the playground.

We were not the only ones so late, another couple kids came in with us and also paid half price. The organizer came in and offered crafts but the kids weren't interested, they just wanted to dive in the ball pit. She did let us say as long as we wanted and that was really nice. So after an hour and a half of playing we left for some food.

I took the boys to Tony Romas for a late lunch and we all had ribs. I was surprised that at 3pm it took 20 minutes to be seated and we barely made it out of there in time to make it back to the Pavilion for the Spook and Splash family swim.

We did make it however and it was a blast. There weren't many people there so lot of toys and room to move. The kids really love it. That place is like a really tame indoor water park with the lazy river and the long water bridges for the kids to run down and jump in. Robin is getting so brave, he always wants to try it and does well too. The toddler area is shallow enough in places for Dallas to walk around too but he preferred to hold on and be dragged in the water this time. When the family swim was over I took Robin with me and Doug took Dallas. Robin, whom usually isn't so crazy about showers wanted his own shower and washed his own hair and let me help with the conditioner. He's really getting so big. I brought snack cups in the swim bags to keep the kids entertained while the parent got dressed and that worked well for me, Robin ate dried fruit while I got dressed then got dressed himself.

We went home to a great big roast ready and waiting in the crock pot. and had mashed potatoes, gravy, peas and yummy yummy roast beef. Dinner was followed by suckers and the book Good Night Goon, a parody of Good Night Moon, still the current favorite. I have to read this book at least 4 times a day, Doug reads it at least 3 and Robin reads it to Dallas at least 4 times as well. It's a neat book though.

Well that's Halloween folks, we did not participate in anything candy-centric and had a great time anyway. I was a three ring circus, Robin was an elephant, Dallas was a lion and Doug was a Tiger.

I got my Macbook!!!!

8:40 PM Edit This 0 Comments »
I'm so excited, I finally have my macbook pro. It was quite a journey to get it. It started off yesterday, well it really started Tuesday but yesterday is when the traveling started. I called every store in Washington to see if they had one in stock. No one did, not anything higher then the base model and I wanted the next one up.
Wednesday morning I realized that for warranty purposes buying a computer through my Visa was a better idea then cash so I sent the super sized payment but it wasn't going to go through until midnight so even though I found two at the Bellevue store I had to wait.
On Thursday I called Alderwood, the first store on my list and they had a few but couldn't tell me how many. When I got there they told me they had just sold out and I should call back tomorrow. This is what they said on the phone on Tuesday and Wednesday too. I believe this is what the people at the Alderwood store tell you if they don't deem you worthy. I always feel snubbed at that store. The day wasn't a complete loss, I needed to pick up a package of socks I ordered at REI anyway. Doug took a bus from Everett to the mall and met us at the play area. We went out to dinner and then drove home. Driving home was a separate adventure all together. Doug was too tired to drive so I drove. He didn't want to leave his car at the bus station so I dropped him there to pick it up but he was so tired he didn't make it home and needed to pull over to sleep. I took the kids home alone, had to catch and cage the remaining 4 chicks so they didn't get eaten by the raccoons as was the fate of the 6 others the night before. That was no easy task, they are small, were scared and I don't fit in the pen so I had to lift it and chase them out, then around the yard. Titus helped by sitting where I told him to, keeping them from running away too far. Robin was upset that Papa wasn't home to go to bed and was "worried that a mouse was going to scare him" I fed all the critters I could, the rest had to wait for Doug. He didn't come home until 6 am and didn't get into the house until 9 am. I was a little ticked off, to say the least. Anyhow, the night wasn't all bad. The kids both slept in there beds for the first time. Robin fell asleep while waiting for me to bring laundry up and Dallas needed me to lay down with him. I was surprised that I fit on a toddler bed with him, but I did and he fell asleep and slept there until morning. They didn't get to sleep unit after 1 am but woke up at around 8:30.

This morning I woke up early with the intention of getting ready and door busting the Alderwood store since it's the closest to my house and figured at 9 am if I'm standing there waiting they would have to sell one to me. I realized I needed to pack for our stay at the La Leche League Conference so decided not to go get a laptop and put it off until next week. Doug noticing that I was still angry called around to find a macbook and then sprung on me that I needed to leave right away to go to Bellevue to pick it up. Here the craziness starts.

We arrived at Bellevue square, which if you are expecting to see that we are in a recession, Bellevue square in the middle of the day on a Friday is not the place you will find it. It was packed parking was packed, the streets surrounding the mall were packed. I found myself a parking spot in a garage outside Nordstroms and headed in to find the bathroom them go to the Apple Store. When we got in the elevator the lights went out for a second then turned back on and we went down. I didn't think much of it at the time, perhaps it was a power saving feature or something. Well went the elevator stopped half of the downstairs of Nordstroms was dark, the whole makeup, perfume and ladies shoes were without power. That didn't stop people from shopping, not at all. I thought it strange but was on a mission so continued to the Apple store where a steady stream of people were on the way out the door. The mall was to be evacuated, they had no power in the store and were all going to Starbucks. We went outside with everyone else. After walking around the outside to a main entrance we found a place to sit and wait for word of what was going on. I checked my phone to see if there was anything from the local news stations about it but they didn't have any news.

After nearly 30 min of waiting outside a security officer came out and said half the mall was still on and open. A portion of Bellevue was out of power for no known reason and they didn't know when it would turn back on but we were welcome to go in. The kids ran around the mall for a while and after what felt like forever, I couldn't watch the clock, I would have gone crazy, I called Puget Sound Energy to see when the power would be turned back on. We had missed lunch and needed to know if I could leave and come back later. I was the first person to report the outage in the mall. I talked to a customer service operator who took down the information. Not a single person who worked in the mall, or shopped there for that matter had thought to call and check on the power until that point! They only had 4 calls for the entire Bellevue outage! Since they didn't know the power was out they had not dispatched anyone to check out why.

We left to go seek allergy free food. We waled down to this mexican dive on Main Street I used to go to all the time when I worked off Main. Most of the street had changed, not much was the same at all, except for the mexican place. It still had the bins of pasta and chillies encased in glass at the front of the ordering counter. The tables were still rusted metal card tables with Mexican beer logos all over them. They still had pinatas and crap hanging from the celling and the price was still surprisingly high for what you got and what you had to get for yourself. The kids loved the food though so it was worth it.

After our tummies were full we headed back to find the Apple store packed. I got on the list and as soon as my name was called I was told they just sold the last one to the person before me. I was ready to cry. I spent all day waiting for them to open, I was likely the reason the power was back on in the first place and I didn't even get my laptop I had so patiently waited for. On the way out the door the woman who first put me on the list asked if I got everything I came for, I said no not at all, I had a terrible day and nearly started crying. I blurted out that after calling first, the third day in a row, I was told they had them in stock. I came from a nearly two hour drive after calling two more times to make sure they had them on the way. I could help but go on, that after finally finding parking and rushing in I found everyone leaving the store because the power was out and I had been walking around waiting for them to open ever since. She seemed genuinly sorry and said she would call the other stores to see if anyone had one. I almost told her don't bother they don't but I said ok instead. She left me with some poor guy and asked me to tell him all about my day. I think this was new employee training of some sort, babysit the pregnant lady and try to keep her from crying, lol. She came running back and asked if I would really drive to Alderwood. I said YES! YES!!! and I waited for instructions as she went back to the phone. She came back and told me they don't hold computers for anyone but they made an exception this time. I hurried back down to Lynnwood as fast as traffic would allow. I walked in and told the first person in a orange shirt I could that I was there to pick up my laptop. I watched as there was discussion about wheither or not they were going to give me one. Someone there didn't like me. The same man I spoke to the day before, the very person who had already turned me away again was saying they didn't have one for me. A second person intervined and went into the back room. It felt like an eternety waiting for someone to appear out or the back room door and walk my way. Finally after watching 4 other people come out, none of them for me the guy in orange appears with a box in his hand! He said "ok here it is, I need to find you a tech now." His words were as common as if he had only answered a phone. Could he have known how I felt hearing those three little words "here it is"? The kids were sleeping in the stroller, it was probably best or I would have picked one or both of them up and danced around the crowded store. The man who came to take my money in exchange for the computer was less than enthusiastic, more so I'd say irritated with me. It was really more likely irritated with the world in general, not the very friendly type yet had to have a smile on his face. Finally the laptop was mine, I had been waiting for months and finally it was mine!!! It was hard not to open it right there outside the store in the cold wind, sitting on a wet bench in the outdoor area or Alderwood Mall. The kids although covered would get to cold so off I went to the car to drive to our hotel in Redmond so we could start dinner, go to bed and make the La Leche League Conference on time in the morning.

When we got checked in to the hotel room Doug let me play with my new toy and he went to unload the car. This mac is a thing of beauty. I was really hoping for a touch screen, I mean how cool would that be? Maybe in a few years huh? It does have an amazingly huge touch pad and the whole thing is a button. The screen is beautiful, all glass like the ipod and iphone. So far is it feels lighting fast. After putting up with my failing computer like I did, anything might seem fast. The keys on the keyboard are so quiet yet they have a very satisfying feel to them. They are truly inspirational to use. I can see why artists of all types love the Mac. I have not used a Mac in years, not for any length of time anyway so it's taken me a minute to figure everything out but really it's not hard to learn a mac. I love it. I really do. I'm so very very very happy, I'm floating on a cloud!!!

Will "I had sex " be enough?

12:10 AM Posted In , , , Edit This 1 Comment »
Premera Blue Cross wants to know what?
I had a prenatal ultrasound last week. My insurance company Premera Blue Cross, wants to know exactly how and where and when I sustained my "condition", who's at fault and if any covered family members were involved. It seems pregnancy isn't self explanatory enough, they need a lesson on the birds and the bees.

As I see it, this can play out one of two ways. On one hand they are threatening to deny the claim if I don't give them some pretty personal information. Common sense would dictate that a prenatal scan doesn't normally require proof of liability. It's a little outrageous that no one processing the claim bothered to read the claim. If anyone had would they really still have sent this form? My name and address is hand written so it's not as if a human wasn't involved. The letter in fact didn't have enough postage, was sent back opened, and resealed with additional postage added on the back. This form has been handled. Additionally this form has not only gone through hands at the claim department at Premera but they moved it on to their overpayment detection division called Calypso and I can tell it's a Premera company due nothing but the horrible logo design (after coming to that conclusion I also looked it up, indeed it is a Premera affiliate.)Was this intentional? Do they harrase all women who get prenatal ultrasounds in this manner. It clearly states if I refuse the information they are asking for "Describe how you sustained the condition" "Date of condition", "Address and location where injury/onset of condition occurred" and "Do you own this property?" Do I really need to tell them that?? It appears I do if I don't want to pay the $400-$600 the scan costs.

Second option either pen them a quick explanation of conception "When two people love each other very much, sometimes they....." How about the version I told Robin "Mama and Papa made a seed together and planted it in Mama's belly to grow a baby" He is only three after all I and remember being told WAY too much after walking in on my Mom and Dad at around that age and was traumatized at the idea of any and all genitalia for a very long time. I wanted to wait on the true detail on intercourse until he can at least properly pronounce vagina. (girls have kaginas don't you know) I could just print out and enclose some graphic detail on conception and pregnancy from wikipedia or webMD. There has to be lots of resources for that. Any one have any witty ideas to add? I have 14 more days to turn this form back in. I would love to here what you think.