Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Adventures with the Tooth Fairy (Part 1)

Today I went to the dentist. For the first time in over 10 years. I must say it was a really pleasant experience. I got there at 10:30 and filled out all the necessary paperwork. Then, Elizabeth, took me into a consultation room to discuss my goals for my dental health. I told her that I wanted to start having regular checkups again and that I wanted to maybe get veneers for my two front teeth. She was adorable. And she knew her stuff. I had about 15 x-rays taken and then computer pictures of all of my teeth. I got to see all of them up close. The last time I was in a dentist's office was about 2 years ago and I was not a patient. We all know how that went. Anyway, this was a much better experience.

While Elizabeth was checking out my teeth up-close, she said that they looked very good for not having been looked at in over 10 years. She said that I hardly had any tarter build-up. What she didn't know is that I can't stand to feel stuff on my teeth. I like my teeth to feel smooth like they look. Every once in a while, when they start feeling "not smooth," I get out my tools and scrape away. Sorry if this is gross. I have been doing it for as long as I can remember as an adult. I wondered for a minute if I should let her in on my secret or if I should just let her think that I have super tarter-impervious teeth. I decided to tell her. She was pretty impressed. She said I had been doing a pretty good job. After getting all the pictures she needed, she left to go get the dentist.

After a few minutes, she came back and said that it would be a little bit longer since the dentist was still with another patient. Normally, they don't do this on the first visit, but since I had to wait a little while, she had one of the girls from the spa come in and give me a hand and forearm massage. Wow! My whole body felt relaxed. I bet they do that again just before they tell you how much everything is going to cost!

The dentist came in a little while later and can I just say that I love this woman?!? She is so maternal. I just wanted to crawl up in her lap and ask her to tell me the story about the big bad cavity one more time! She is the wife dentist of the husband/wife dentist team at Abilene Dental. Her specailty is cosmetics. She said that Elizabeth told her about my tarter eradicating skills and she thought I might have a hidden talent as a dental hygienist. She went on to look at my teeth one by one and call out the number and some descriptive terms I wasn't familiar with about the condition of each one. She also felt my jaw muscles and asked if I slept with my mouth open (yes) and if I ever grind my teeth (yes, again, usually when I go shopping). I also told her that with all of my four pregnancies I craved ice like some people crave pickles. She said that explained some of the wear that she thought was from grinding.

The verdict on the whole thing was that I have some cavities that are in early enough stages to catch before needing root canals or crowns and that I would benefit from veneers on my front teeth. Not only for cosmetic reasons, but to prevent tooth decay in the places where my old bonding is wearing away. She also told me I might want to consider Invisalign to straighten my teeth out a little. I think that might be unnecessary. She agreed that my dental health would be fine without having my teeth straightened, so I'm pretty sure Elliott is going to say no thank you to that! I have an appointment at the end of the month to discuss what direction I want to go and how much it's going to cost. All in all, it was not a bad way to spend two and a half hours away from the kids. I'll keep you posted on the rest and maybe when it's all over, I can post some before and after shots on here. Who knows, maybe you'll see them on KTAB when they do their dental segment on Mondays!

Friday, July 13, 2007

This little post is dedicated to my friends Alan and Cortney who will be heading off to a honeymoon in  Mexico very soon!

On my computer, I have a screen saver slideshow of pictures of exotic places. Beautiful islands, tropical fish, hammocks under palm trees, places I would love to visit. Sometimes when it's going, the girls will just sit in my chair and look at the pictures. Well, today, John noticed the pictures.

John: Oh mom, can we go to that place for our vacation instead of the beach house?
Me: I don't think so. We're still going to Alabama. You can go to that place someday when you go on your honeymoon!
John: I don't want to go there on my honeymoon.
Me: Why not?
John: Because the girl will be there and I won't get to go swimming!

Congratulations Alan and Cortney. Have fun swimming in Mexico!

How did this happen?

The Daniel Fast is over and yet it seems I'm being followed by vegetables. I checked out the farmer's market across from Frontier Texas last Tuesday and found some great stuff. Then, my mother-in-law loaded me up with tomatoes, bell peppers and every shape of sqaush from their garden. I wasn't planning on that. Here's the rundown:

green beans
squash - yellow, zuchinni, weird white ones, white and green freckled ones
red tomatoes
yellow tomatoes
green bell peppers
yellowish green mild peppers

not shown:


So far, I've roasted some of the squash, onions and peppers and I made a homemade tomato sauce like Joel showed us with the red and yellow tomatoes.

With the rest, I think I'm going to film an episode of veggie tales for children's church!

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Summer Vacation: Plan B

I guess if you've spent any time around Francesca or me, you've heard how we got shafted out of our vacation beach house on South Padre Island. Well, suffice it to say, if you're planning a trip to Padre, don't rent a house from a woman named Trish Smith. Just don't even think about it. God did provide something else, though. Something way better. He likes to do that! Here it is.

It has 4 bedrooms, sleeps 14 and has a kiddie pool in the deck! We're taking Mia and her friend Jordan and 7 of our kids. It's on Dauphin Island, Alabama and there appears to be nothing but sand and houses on that part of the island. We've already paid the down payment so it's on!

Monday, July 09, 2007

O Canada! Part Deux (the pictures)

I know it's taken a while to get these up, but I tell you, It takes forever to get a lot of pictures up at one time. And I still don't like how it looks. I just don't have time to study html in my free time right now! Is it this hard for everyone???

When we flew into Calgary, it was getting dark so there wasn't much to see. We checked into our hotel in Banff and hit the sack. The "sack" by the way, was apparently filled with concrete. I gather Canadians don't sleep much because their beds were extremely hard. I woke up the next morning when the sun came peeping through the curtains at 4:30 am, but decided that was a little too early so I went back to sleep and got up at around 6:15. I got dressed and went out into the town to take a few pictures.

Our hotel with beautiful mountains behind it.

 Cool, old, Presbyterian church.

Breakfast at a local hangout. Mmmmm...lots of crispy bacon!

I wanted one of these so bad. So.....I went back later and got one. I expected it to taste like a gigantic turtle. You know, chocolate, caramel and peanuts. It was called a Murtle and instead of peanuts it had cashews. It looks better than it actually was. (Not worth 6 Canadian dollars!)

I know you can't tell by the picture, but this hotel was spectacular! It's called the Fairmont Banff Springs and it was built in 1888. It was made in the style of a Scottish castle and it's just massive. It has 770 rooms and if you're thinking about staying there, a basic room for two will only set you back $459 Canadian.

Okay, this is Lake Louise and it was absolutely beautiful. The color is normally a turquoise green, but just 2 days earlier it was frozen over. The blurry looking stuff around the edge of the lake is the floating shards of ice because it had just recently melted. Close-up below. Anyway, the color comes from a mineral in the mountains you see behind the lake. It's a glacier fed lake, so the glaciers grind this mineral under them and they go into the lake with the water that comes off of them. The mineral floats in the water and absorbs all the colors in the spectrum except green and blue so that's why the lake is that color. Because it had just thawed, the pretty green color had only made it about half way across the lake. 

Another picture of Lake Louise with the glaciers behind it.

Halfway up the trail to two other lakes up in the mountains. The first was Mirror Lake and the one higher up was Lake Agnes aka Lake Agony. My hiking distance so far is 4 miles.

At the top of the falls that come from Lake Agnes. There was a teahouse up there, but it was still closed for the winter. Arrrrgggggghhhh.

Day . Took the Jasper Tramway up to the top of Whistlers Mountain.
View from the top. That's Jasper down below. Cute little town.

I know it looks like an ant trail, but that's the hike up to the very top of the mountain ridge that Elliott and his brother Eric just had to climb. I only made it halfway up. I think I could've died. If you're counting, my mileage so far is 4.5 miles.

View from the top. Elliott, of course, took the picture.

My Moses, coming down from the mountain with the freshly inscribed tablets!

Beautiful lake. Look how clear and blue the water is!

Here we are in front of our cute cabin in Jasper at 10:00pm! Imagine trying to put your kids to bed when 10:00 looks like this!

We hiked on a trail through Maligne Canyon that followed a river. We saw a place by the bank where the water was bubbling out. What does my husband do? He decides to stick his arm in up to his elbow. Boys! It turns out, it was an underground river that was flowing into the main river.

This is Pyramid Lake. So beautiful and tranquil. Until.....

Elliott rents a kayak that is way too small for our weight combined, then starts rocking it to scare me. I had a camera around my neck with about 200 pictures in it. Is he insane? All you could hear on this lake of tranquility was me screaming at my husband to sit still!

How's that for the retired life? That's Elliott's mom rowing her newly retired husband around in a row boat! Elliott, don't get your hopes up!

If there's something to climb, the boys will climb it. Now I know where that comes from!

Couldn't go to Canada without taking a picture of a Moose. Or is that an Elk?

Last day we were there, it looked like the weather was going to turn bad. There were some low clouds that actually covered the tops of some of the mountains. John had said before we left that he wanted to see a cloud on the top of a mountain, so this picture is for him!