Archive for March, 2010

I’ll see that snark — and raise you one.

Today I saw a colorectal surgeon.To answer the obvious questions: Yes, I’m still on vacation. No, I could not wait til I got home; the pain was so severe that I willingly drove nearly an hour into a very questionable area of Miami in order to have a doctor with extremely large hands glove up, put on some caving gear and —

You get the idea.

I won’t go into the specifics* but suffice it to say that tomorrow afternoon I’ll start drinking that nasty colonoscopy stuff in order to have a surgical procedure done on Wednesday that will involve anesthesia, gloved hands in very delicate parts, a donut pillow to sit on afterwards — and hopefully some really good drugs.

I will share this: my particular ailment ranks as the third most-painful anal condition!

It is extremely painful, says the woman who still can’t believe she had a baby without any medication, in a birth pool in my bedroom. (Thank goodness I had witnesses. Seriously. My first words after delivering My Masterpiece were, “I can NOT believe I did that.” I take ty*lenol for a paper cut.)

Luckily, this particular colorectal surgeon, Dr. Spelunking, could see me on short notice, as a new patient from out-of-town.

There is truly nothing more enjoyable than answering the question “location of injury” at the colorectal surgeon’s office. (Editor’s note: A close second was last September, dictating to a nurse my “medical goals for treatment” when I was admitted to a hospital for dehydration secondary to diarrhea. While I was getting an IV and blissful, blissful fluids, the nurse said, “What are your medical goals for treatment while you’re here?” I replied, “I’d like to stop shitting my brains out.” She looked shocked and said, “Ma’am, I can’t write that down.” I said, “I was just kidding! I’m not shitting my brains out — it’s my intestines. Please write, ‘Patient would like to stop shitting out her intestines…'”)

That was a fun week. I had to give, uh, samples, every few hours. Samples. In a container. To a nurse. (Please, tell me whoever has that job is paid well.)

But back to filling out forms in Dr. Spelunking’s office. For “location of injury,” I thought for a second and wrote, “ASS.”

When the nurse brought me back, after the usual lecture about stool softeners and fiber and eating a balanced diet, yada yada, she read my chart.

Nurse Tight-Ass: “For ‘Location of Injury’ you wrote…”

Actual Tight-Ass: “ASS.”

Nurse Tight-Ass: (With snark.) “Most people write anus.”

Actual Tight-Ass, who has spent the last 24 hours on the toilet, in pain, debating whether or not to see a colorectal surgeon while on freaking vacation; then spent hours calling the local hospital that is approximately three minutes from my parent’s house and has an actual colorectal surgery center — only to be told their next available appointment is in 2015 — while finally finding this particular colorectal surgeon in a hospital that is — again — located nearly an hour away in a very questionable area that I would only drive to if I were having pain in my ass so severe that I couldn’t wait til I got home to see my usual colorectal surgeon, who has a lovely office in a lovely area of town: “This is a colorectal surgeon’s office, correct? Do you think I’m here because I have swine flu?”

*I will totally tell you exactly what my specific anal ailment is, if you want to email me. geberika (at) gmail (dot) com. I will go into graphic detail. I will send pictures. You are warned.


March 30, 2010 at 1:01 am Leave a comment

Homeschoolers: Vacationing with Regular-Schoolers since 2010

I find it wildly ironic that I happen to take our first vacation as homeschoolers when all the other kids are on spring break. Here’s a quick recap of Disney.

Ten Random Moments at Disney

10. Star Tours. Animal and Mineral thought it was the coolest ride they’ve ever been on. I thought I was going to vomit from motion-sickness.

9. The Informant at Bippity Boppity Boo. Despite being one of those progressive moms who didn’t want to gender stereotype my children, I made a little squee upon seeing The Informant looking like she stepped out of a bottle of Pepto-Bismol. Or a mouth.

8. Maizey on the tram to Hollywood Studios. I was hoping I could park at the front and take her to the kennel there (of course Maizey came with us to Disney!) but the parking attendant said she’d have to ride the tram like all the other… people.

7. Eating hamburgers every day: I was in heaven!

6. FastPass. It just rules. Part two is that our tickets somehow mysteriously de-magnetized, meaning the automated FastPass wouldn’t work, so we had to get FastPass tickets from a Disney worker. Meaning we could get FastPass tickets to multiple rides since the automated machine wouldn’t notice!

5. It’s a Small World After All. I even got a little teary, it’s such a sweet ride. Still my favorite.

4. Seeing my aunt Alice and uncle Ronnie and cousin Adam for dinner at TRex in Downtown Disney. Great food; the ambiance was total sensory overload. Afterwards, Ronnie took all of my kids to the Lego Store and bought them sets! Even My Masterpiece! Thank you uncle Ronnie!

3. Breathe-Right Strips: Epic FAIL. My mom still snores like a drunken 400lb trucker. Except now she looks like a drunken 400lb trucker with a sticker on her face.

2. Hollywood Studios. I liked it almost as much as Magic Kingdom. Who knew?

1. Seeing Animal and Mineral enjoying themselves. They’re 7, which is the perfect age for Disney. The Informant got tired and cranky after a few days of staying up late and getting up early, and My Masterpiece is a little young for Disney, but Animal and Mineral were so full of wonder! They were wonder-full.   

I will post some actual pics soon. My camera was awesome!

March 28, 2010 at 7:10 am Leave a comment

Dear Cake: You win. (I’ll eat you anyway.)

I have a new nemesis. Forget my crazy neighbor; it is much more devious and complicated than him. It is this — Ice Cream Roll Cake.

Don't I look easy?

I made it last night for The Informant’s birthday party, and I made it again today for her actual birthday, and both times I totally screwed it up.

Which brings me to the following Personal Truth: I can cook; I cannot bake.

In my defense, baking is not like cooking. Cooking is roses and hearts and cute little puppies. Baking is more like cleaning my German grandmother’s house: it requires precision, elbow grease, and a lot of time squinting unhappily.

My Chemical Romance loves baking. This is probably because baking is a chemical science.

Here is the actual recipe (along with my commentary):


  • 4 eggs, separated (separated? into what? how many?)
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup cake flour (used “organic pastry flour” and hoped for the best.)
  • 1/4 cup baking cocoa
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups ice cream, softened
  • 2 (1 ounce) squares unsweetened baking chocolate
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 2/3 cup evaporated milk, heated to 160 degrees F
  • 1 cup sugar


  1. Let eggs stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Line a greased 15-in. x 10-in. x 1-in. baking pan with waxed paper; grease and flour paper; set aside. (What I did: put 2 eggs in each cup of my bra and prayed that nobody wanted a hug.)
  2. In a large mixing bowl, beat egg yolks on high for 3 minutes or until lemon-colored. Gradually add sugar and vanilla, beating until thick and pale yellow. Combine the flour, cocoa and baking powder; gradually add to egg yolk mixture Beat on low until well mixed (mixture will be thick). (What the recipe gods meant to say was, ‘mixture will resemble chocolate flavored cement.’)
  3. In another large mixing bowl and with clean beaters (do not use tongue), beat egg whites and salt on high speed until soft peaks form. Fold a fourth of egg whites into the batter, then fold in remaining whites. (Hope you have strong arms for this part!)
  4. Spread batter evenly in prepared pan. (As evenly as you can spread chocolate cement mixed with beaten egg whites.) Bake at 350 degrees F for 15 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly touched. Turn cake onto a kitchen towel (cloth diaper) dusted with confectioners’ sugar. Gently peel off waxed paper. Roll up cake in the towel jelly-roll style, starting with a short side. Cool completely on a wire rack.
  1. Unroll cake (watch cake fall entirely apart); spread with ice cream to within 1 in. of edges. Roll up again (while ice cream oozes out all sides of totally fallen-apart cake). Cover with plastic wrap and freeze until serving. CURSE REPEATEDLY.
  2. In a small heavy saucepan, melt chocolate and butter over low heat, stirring until smooth. Gradually add warm milk and sugar; stir constantly for 5 minutes or until completely dissolved. Serve with cake.

Yesterday, I had a giant burrito with ice cream inside. Imagine the outside is chocolate cake, and the inside is a burrito (and there’s chocolate/fudge sauce on top)

A tasty dessert!

Today I got… the opposite. (My Chemical Romance: “What’s the opposite of a burrito? A sandwich? A fish? I’m confused.”)

More like a flauta. Skinny, anemic-looking, pathetic — and of course falls apart, just like the burrito version.

I am not an improvement.

I am not an improvement.

Still, I can’t deny that both cakes taste good but ever since I started watching Top Chef on Bravo, I actually care about presentation.

For dinner, I am making Garlic Cheese Chicken Roll-Ups, which my friend Paul says look like ZhuZhu pets.

Who's hungry?

March 22, 2010 at 3:44 pm 1 comment

In which I consider changing my blog name

Dear Three Blog Followers,

Thank you for reading my blog. I appreciate it. Even if you never leave comments, it’s good to know that my writing amuses more than just my parents, who think a blog is the least I can do after they paid for my degree in creative writing from the University of Michigan.

That said, I am changing my blog name. (Those of you reading this on Facebook may be shocked to know that I have an blogger account. And that the internet does exist outside the parameters of FB.)

Here are some names I’m thinking about: (Improving the flavor of motherhood!) (The perfect side dish!) (Not crying over it since 2009!) (Just add water!) (Just like the commercial!) (Even though I’m not Italian)

What do you (four) think?

March 19, 2010 at 1:15 pm Leave a comment

In which I make my own condiments

Oh, how I love cooking! 

Even though Mineral doesn’t eat anything I make — My Masterpiece does, and Animal and The Informant will nibble. My Chemical Romance likes my food. But forget about them; I love my cooking. Despite eating out a lot as a kid — I had two working parents and who likes to come home from a hard day to the kitchen? — at this point I’d rather stay home.

Introducing: Dressing! 

(This was a picture that came up when I googled ‘dressing’)


  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk = 1/2 tbsp white vinegar (or lemon juice) + milk to make 1/2 cup
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried chives
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried dill weed
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon vegetable oil

Whisk together all ingredients. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes before serving.


  • 2 1/2 ounces blue cheese
  • 3 tablespoons buttermilk
  • 3 tablespoons sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper

In a small bowl, mash blue cheese and buttermilk together with a fork until mixture resembles large-curd cottage cheese. Stir in sour cream, mayonnaise, vinegar, sugar, and garlic powder until well blended. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

  • 1 tablespoon garlic
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon white sugar
  • 2 tablespoons dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 tablespoon dried parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon celery salt

In a small bowl, mix together the garlic salt, onion powder, sugar, oregano, pepper, thyme, basil, parsley, celery salt and regular salt. Store in a tightly sealed container.

To prepare dressing, whisk together 1/4 white vinegar, 2/3 cup canola oil, 2 tablespoons water and 2 tablespoons of the dry mix.

Meanwhile, if I have one piece of advice about cooking, one thing that has revolutionized my life, it is this: always always ALWAYS marinade your chicken overnight before cooking it. Chicken has a tendency toward dryness, and marinading (I use Italian dressing) makes it so juicy! 

This does require forethought. I usually have to plan chicken meals at least a day in advance. Still, it’s worthwhile. I notice a difference in my Garlic Cheese Chicken Roll Ups (my favorite meal) when I don’t marinade. 

Meanwhile, I’m going to attempt over the next few weeks to introduce a few vegetarian meals into my repertoire. Vegetarian meals are healthier than meat-based meals; they are also better for the environment. I’ve found a few on that are supposed to be very tasty. 

Today I had an abdominal and pelvic CT scan at the hospital. I’ve been having some tummy troubles, and I’m hoping there is some explanation better than my GI doctor throwing up his hands and blaming my weight-loss surgery. Which is what he normally does. Yes, having my guts re-arranged has caused me some issues. So did weighing nearly 300lbs. 

March 13, 2010 at 2:37 pm Leave a comment

In which I describe my family

First we have Animal and Mineral. They are twin boys. They have been fighting since they were in utero, when Animal was supposed to be born first. I was told by my doctor that they could not change places. Late in my pregnancy, two weeks before they were born, they did. (Thus began my skepticism of mainstream health care practices.) Mineral was born first. Here is a picture of them at about a month old.

Aren’t they precious?– Note Animal is eating Mineral’s head. That picture was taken nearly 7 years ago. Not much has changed.  
Next is The Informant. She will be 5 soon. She has never met a human being with whom she didn’t long to share her entire life story. Along with anything else you’ve ever made the mistake of saying in her presence. She will happily describe my TTT in detail, along with information about Mineral’s eczema, Animal’s love of tomatoes, and the plot of The Sixth Sense. “Rosebud was his sled!” she gleefully exclaimed to a playmate. “I knew from the beginning that Kevin Spacey was Keyser Soze,” she once whispered to me conspiratorially.

Keeping track of the world is often quite useful; she lets me know when the house is about to burn down or when My Materpiece is awake from a nap. On the other hand, another word for informant is tattletale. 
Finally, we have My Masterpiece. It took me four tries to get a child who nursed for a year, loves to cuddle, sucks her thumb charmingly (meaning: when she’s tired; not all the time) and has a sunny disposition. She’s two-and-a-half and has never climbed out of her crib. She loves laying on her tummy and rolling a matchbox car along the carpet, doesn’t complain when her routine changes, and recently started replacing Ts with Ns (“I want to go DOWNSNARES!”) 

She giggled when I posted that picture. My Masterpiece.

The other players in my house are my husband, also known as My Chemical Romance; the fish; and Maizey, also known as the Dog Without A Downside

Upside only. 
That’s my family. 

March 11, 2010 at 6:05 pm Leave a comment

In which I explain why I now WILL take Opium!

But first, let me explain why I was offered Opium. (Leigh pointed out to me that I had such an intriguing title yesterday, and didn’t even bother to work it into the blog!)

Tincture of Opium — which is much more potent than Paregoric — can help with Toilet Time Trips. So, after trying many different medications to, um, stop the daily TTT my GI doc suggested it. With the following caveats:

Filling this RX at your pharmacy will get you red-flagged with the FDA; I will get flagged for prescribing it. You’ll have to document appointments with me every two weeks. It is a potent narcotic and you will have to find the lowest dose that helps and then try to get off it as quickly as possible.

I left the appointment and threw the RX in the trash. It sounded too complicated. Plus, I just can’t get on board with being on narcotics — although it sounds like fun! — while homeschooling four children every day.

I had began to think of my daily TTT is just another part of my life, like cooking or brushing my teeth or watching The Real Housewives of New York.

But, alas, daily TTT is becoming multi-daily TTT which is accompanied by pain and bloating, and I think it’s time to do something about it. I saw the GI yesterday (GI Joe) and he said that I’m not a complainer about pain–


My mom: Boy, do you have him fooled!

Leigh: Did you send in a doppelganger or something?!?!?!?!?

–but I think he just said that because he went to Ohio State and therefore is clearly a moron (Go Blue!). Or a sadist in his spare time.

Really, daily TTT is somewhat a part of life post-BPD/DS, but that doesn’t mean I shouldn’t try medication to stop it. Right???

March 6, 2010 at 12:57 pm Leave a comment

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About Mommy Soup

Wife and homeschooling mom of five, including my Christmas Day homebirth baby. Not Catholic, Amish, or quiverfull; we just like to... you know!

Writing about my interests: natural pregnancy and birth; attachment parenting; cooking; baking; homeschooling; green living; human rights; child passenger safety; dog training, and life after weight-loss surgery.

In my free time I try to figure out how I can promote world peace while wasting time on Facebook.

NaNoWriMo 2010

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