Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Sick son = good parenting?

My six-year-old Carson got stomach sick at school today.  On a field trip at Woodward Park.  While I was helping a friend by babysitting her little boy, 25 minutes away in Broken Arrow.  And hubs was out of town.
But that’s not the story here.
When I finally got Carson home, after much help from family and friends (who moved their feet just in time), I settled him on the sofa where he appeared to pass out.  But his breathing was normal and deep so I knew he was sleeping.  I put a blanket over him and spread a towel on the floor in front of him.  I positioned a trash can next to the sofa and I stroked his forehead, trying to detect any sign of a fever.  Then I stroked it some more just because I felt so dang sorry for him.
Then I realized that when my boys get sick, I actually feel like a pretty good parent.
It always takes me back to when I was a little girl, and when I was sick I felt like I suddenly ruled the world in my house of many siblings.  Only I didn’t enjoy ruling because I was…well…sick.
But my mom, she’d sit with me and bring me a cool cloth for my forehead and make me a tray of yummy bland food.  And I never really felt that bad when she was there with me.
So when my boys get sick, I find myself doing and saying the same kinds of things to them.  I want them to feel safe and not anxious and comfortable and loved.  And yes, I’m sad they feel bad, but as a little girl I remember thinking, hey, this being sick isn’t the worst thing in the world if I’m gonna get all this lovin’!
And their sickness, it seems to bring out the softer mom in me.  And the protective mom.  And the smart mom because I can usually figure out what to do for them.
I NEVER wish my kids to be sick.  And when they are, I wish it like heck to be gone.
But for me, as a mom, it also reinforces to me that I’m getting through some parts of parenthood in okay fashion.
And it’s those areas I hope my kids remember the most vividly.
christine sig 

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Credit/debit card fraud: happened to me

About a month ago our credit card number was stolen and the thieves attempted to make a purchase using it in Florida.  They were thwarted and we got a new card and all is fine.

Today I got a call from a nice lady at a fraud protection company who told me our BANK CARD number had been stolen, and there were two attempts to use it in Houston.  Both times the card was declined, red flags on our account went up, and the card was completely canceled.  We'll be getting a new card in the next few days.  She did not assume, by the way, that it was stolen...she just said there was suspicious activity and called me to verify it.

In both these instances, the red flags on our accounts were one-time charges to our cards for a dollar or two.  It is a strategy thieves use in order to make sure the card they've stolen actually works.  Once they're able to use it for that small amount, they go for larger purchases.  In the case of Florida, a large grocery store order.  In Houston, gasoline.

The whole thing feels very creepy, but Dwayne and I know we haven't done anything irresponsible with our card numbers.  Today I asked the lady with fraud protection services if she had any advice for us.  She told me the obvious points: don't give your card number over the phone to someone who's called you, don't respond to any email asking for your card number, etc.

The other advice we got in both instances was that restaurant servers could be recording the information from our card when we use it to pay our bill.  After all, who knows where they take it when it disappears from our sight while we're finishing our meal?  Maybe we should lower our restaurant standards and only go to places where we pay on our way out...  Or just pay cash.  Now there's a idea.

Anyway, I'm just writing about this so ya'll will be on your guard, too.  I hope you also have a credit union or bank who keeps a close eye on  And you watching your account activity all the time isn't enough.

For your reference, here's some official advice on protecting identity and account theft:

Clark Howard, one of my favorite financial geeks.

Federal Trade Commission. 

christine sig

Wednesday, April 21, 2010


My moms and I just got back from our annual (annual!) trip to not-where-our-kids-are.  It's two nights about four hours in any direction, and it usually takes us to some shopping mecca.  This year: The Plaza in Kansas City.

And I bought this: two of its cousins.  The three bowls were beautiful and I got them at Anthropologie...a wonderful and heavenly store where everything has "Christine" written on it.  Except their $165 jeans...those had "Amy" on them.  But I digress...

It wasn't easy for me to buy these bowls.  They were not cheap and I wasn't really keen on babying them all the way back to Tulsa.  So I carried them around the store for 20 minutes before I finally pulled the trigger.  And then I carried them around for the next six hours as I shopped The Plaza.  And then I nestled them amongst the luggage in the back of the car to keep them safe.

Then when I got home I presented them to Dwayne to his delight (or maybe the delight was just that his three-day shift was over).  And we marveled together (or just me) about how perfectly they'll go on the shelf I'd hung a few days before.

And then I arranged them on the shelf and stood back and thought how perfect they looked up there...all kitchen-y and ready to hold sour cream dips or fresh strawberries or Cheetos.  They were all set to get shuffled about in the sink where I'd wash them by hand and return them to rule our kitchen from the shelf.

In fact I almost grabbed my camera to take a photo of my shelf/bowl display.

Turns out that would have been a good idea.

Since my shelf-hanging abilities SUCK.

And two days after I brought the bowls home, the nails holding the shelf slipped out of the wall.  And the whole thing crashed to the floor in a million Anthropologetic pieces.

I suppose I could have photographed the mess...but I didn't want to remember my material obsession like that.  All...dead.

So I cleaned up the carnage and Dwayne rehung the shelf and suggested that anything else we put up there should not be breakable.  Thanks, honey.

Maybe after I stop cringing from the whole experience we'll have a nice place to store napkins.

christine sig

Monday, April 19, 2010

When your friend leaves

I got a call a few weeks ago from my friend Carol.  She told me she's moving to St. Louis since her husband's been transferred there.  It's taken me this long to feel like writing about it, but I knew I would.  Even with my willy-nilly attitude toward this blog, I knew I'd have to write this down.

Carol and I have been friends for our lives.  Our mothers were friends before we were born.  At four months old she was toted to the hospital to see me when I was born.  We went to the same church, the same schools until college, and have always, always, always, lived in the same state.  Other than my family, Carol has been the person who has known every stage and aspect of my life and has been there for me without fail.

And now she's leaving the state.  I don't even know what to do with that right now.  My whole life she's been in my backyard and now everything will change.  I don't even know what to expect.  I know we'll talk on the phone all the time and email and Facebook and all that.

But that's not like seeing her whenever I want.  It's not like having her stand by me when I got married, or at my bed when I was in labor with my first baby.  I could name a hundred other events in my life and hers that phones and email and Facebook can't touch.  And not all major things, either.  Just...things.

I know she has some anxiety about leaving, but wouldn't anyone moving to a new state?  Yet she and her husband of 24 years are happy about the idea and ready to take on the challenge of starting everything new.  People do it all the time, she says.

But for me?  Self-centered me?  I feel like a big chunk of my childhood is just...leaving. I already feel a little lost.  Is that terrible to say when I have a husband and a lot of family in the area who will do anything to support me at any time?  Maybe.  Certainly, it's not that I will be alone without's just that I won't be with her.

She's leaving in just a few weeks.  I don't know what to say to her when I tell her goodbye.  She's not too mushy-gushy and she's going to be wrought with all her other goodbyes so I will try to keep the emotions to a minimum for her sake.  But right now I'm bawling as I write this so I'm not sure saying goodbye to her in person is even a good idea.  And luckily she's not a blog reader so she may not even read this.  I don't really know...

I do know it's not about me...I know I have to grow up and realize people don't always stay where I want them to just because that's how I want it.  And I know it'll happen one day that I can think about her living so far away and not be sad.

But it's not today.  I assure's not today.

christine sig

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Denver. At last.

I've made so many verbal promises lately you'd think I was President.

I've promised at least five people I'd have pics of such-and-such up soon. My talk is getting cheaper by the minute.  But here's a start with the Denver photos.  Hey, I don't recall any of you giving me a deadline.  That'll teach ya.

The first batch is from my recent trip to Denver to surprise my sister and her daughter at the daughter's baby shower.  Oh, the scheming was so much fun!  But when it got to the big reveal I was found out by my ever-so-efficient sister who was putting her things away in a hiding place!  I'd hidden behind the door and she turned around and saw me.  She just started laughing...and I stood stock still thinking maybe she just does that all the time and she really hadn't seen me.  But that wasn't the case.  Oh, well...

My sweet niece Tracy.  That's her first baby she's carrying...due May 5.

I took this photo from behind the bedroom door of my sister Theresa.  Her first words...or thereabouts: "Did you bring anyone with you??"

Tracy's sister Holly.  Yes, she really is that cute.  She was in on the scheme but at the last minute she left her mother unattended in her apartment.  But our botched plan wasn't her fault!  I forgot to sling myself out the window at the last minute...

The new mom, the new dad and the new grandma outside Holly's condo.

I think my little disposable camera got me some very not disposable photos...

christine sig

Sunday, April 04, 2010

My chewy blog

Is there such a thing as a little overwhelmed?

Because to me, either you're calm about stuff or you're Calgon-take-me-away.

But there are times I feel overwhelmed and yet I'm not too worried about it.

Like now.

Because the things I've committed to and can't seem to accomplish lately are not life and death situations, or omigosh I have to do these things or I'm going to lose my job situations.

But this blog, and you readers, I like you.  And I don't like to tell you something and then not follow through with it.  I'd surely lose both of you and then where would I be?  Lost, I tell ya.

So I'm sorry for the mistreatment.  I know it's slightly disappointing when you come here expecting something new and see a stale post.  I know because I read a blog or two myself, and then ones that keep me comin' back are the ones that are made fresh daily.  Or at least every couple days.  Not the ones with stale material that starts getting a little tough to take.

I've got several posts in my head, though, and I'm trying to make the time to get them out here where they belong.  Just scrape together some patience and I'll be with you soon with fresh material.

And this stale junk will get shoved to the side.  I hope.

christine sig