Monthly Archive for November, 2012

Lucky Number 7

Happy 7th Birthday, Claire!

I’ll be posting more photos of the big day & the party tomorrow, but in the meantime, can you guess how wide our freezer is?

It’s as wide as the circular base of an 8″ ice cream cake, without the protective plastic case.

Ask me how I know.


We’re back from a week in Kauai!

I thought it was hard to leave the island last time, and this time is proving to be even worse.

We took an overnight flight last night, and after what seems like days of traveling, we stopped at a restaurant on the way home. I wasn’t offered a flower for my hair. The view of ocean was completely obstructed. I’m wearing pants.

This version of reality is just awful!

Needless to say, this was one of the most fantastic vacations we’ve had, and in true Casual Perfectionist style, it was a fun mix of relaxation and awesome adventures.  I’ll be reporting back on all of those and more in the coming days.

In the meantime, Aloha!


“Take my picture! Send it to Daddy! …he might barf,” she screamed with joy. CLAIRE LOST HER 1ST TOOTH!

An Early Birthday Present

At the beginning of August, Claire mastered the two wheels.

We knew we wanted to get her a bike for her birthday, and having two months to practice on the tiny bike was going to be the perfect plan.

This weekend, the weather was grand, and Claire wanted to show the visiting grandparents how she could ride her bike without training wheels.

We go down the garage, and get all ready, and discover that the tire on her tiny bike is flat.  She and Daddy had been battling that tire, and she was sad.

“Oh no!” I said, following my prepared speech perfectly. “It’s too bad you can’t ride your bike.  I thought that’s what we were going to do today!”  As per my script, I looked to Daddy for him to say his line.

“You know what?” he said right on cue, turning toward the car.  “I think that can be arranged.”

He popped the hatch and revealed an early birthday present.

Claire was ecstatic! She wanted to try it out before we even got it adjusted.

We went down to the lake, and she was off in a flash.

Because she can do so many tricks on the little bike, there was hardly a wobble in the learning curve for this bike.

Yesterday, Claire & Daddy were able to explore the bike trails and jumps by our house. They LOVED it. Not sure who was more excited, the kid…or Claire.  😉

The New Normal

Dealing with this jaw therapy has been one of the hardest challenges I’ve faced to date. How it is going?


The therapy was a success! There is no locking, no pain. It’s the New Normal that hurts (albeit only emotionally) every once in a while.

What’s the New Normal?

No crunchy or chewy foods, which means no bacon, no hard candies, no nuts. Everything I eat is on a case-by-case basis. I have found that my entire system is really sensitive to foods that were once common place, so I have to be careful in that regard, too.

If one more person suggests I could just make a smoothie out of whatever it is that I’m craving, I’ll scream. First of all, I’m just not a smoothie type of person. They’re okay, but they’re not fabulous. Second, what little mystique they had for me died back in JUNE.

Also, for me, taste has very little to do with the foods I crave. Yes, I love tasty food, but I love the crunch of the bacon as it breaks against the crispy lettuce and succulent tomato in a BLT. I love the sound of iceberg lettuce as I chomp on it. I view chips as a necessary vehicle for whatever dip I’m being served, and I love that feeling of crunchy and soft. No, I really don’t want to eat that dip with a spoon, thankyouverymuch.

I have been granted some leeway in some foods. I can have crisp lettuce on a sandwich if the bread isn’t too tough to go along with it. Salads themselves are still a bit too tricky. Chips are still tricky, too! You see, by design, most of my teeth no longer touch. They have to be this way to keep my jaw in proper alignment. My front teeth touch, and if food is thick enough, I can chew it. If it’s too thin, I can’t. If it’s crunchy or tough, I can’t bite down hard enough to chew it. How do I eat? If it’s soft enough, I can bite into it (Yay! This is a HUGE breakthrough!), but then once whatever it is has been chewed to a certain extent, I have to use my tongue with the roof of my mouth to finish the process, and then I swallow it.

That’s a wonderful visual, eh? Sorry about that.

Remember when all I could think about was a hamburger? Well, I finally was able to eat a tiny one. It was the most wonderful thing ever, and I got so entirely sick afterwards. Oddly enough, that craving has been filed away as a thing of the past.

My routine is as such, and will be forever: The nighttime device will be worn every night. The daytime device will be worn during “times of known stress,” or once a day, or at least once a week so that I know it will continue to fit properly if I do need it.

I won’t see my Jaw Specialist for three months, and at my appointment last week, he granted me permission to snorkel when we’re in Hawaii.  I was ecstatic!  (So, New Normal isn’t all bad!)

In fact, New Normal is almost all good.  I’m thankful that the pain is gone. I’m thankful the locking is no longer an issue. I’m thankful to have reached the other side of my therapy with (most of) my sanity intact.

As we get into the holidays, I’m battling my emotional ties with traditional foods, and I’ll take this journey one day at a time.

New Normal isn’t so bad.