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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in Elisa's LiveJournal:

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    Friday, July 29th, 2011
    2:56 pm
    Letter to Kroger
    I sent this to Kroger today.

    Dear Kroger,

    I encountered a serious and dangerous design flaw today in your anti-theft grocery carts and would like to bring it to your attention. I went to the Kroger on ***** in ******. My 5 year old wanted to stop by the dollar store (next door) first. I parked in the Kroger parking lot, since I was intending to go to Kroger afterwards, put my 6 month old in his carseat in the Kroger cart that I got from the cart corral, and walked towards the dollar store. The carseat in the cart blocked my view of the sign on the cart describing how the wheels would lock if I went over the yellow line, and so I inadvertently went over the yellow line in trying to get to a ramp where I could easily push the cart up onto the sidewalk and then into the store. This, I admit, was due to me not noticing. HOWEVER this put me and my children in a dangerous situation. I had a baby and a preschooler in the cart and was STUCK in the middle of a busy parking lot right-of-way. I couldn't take both children to the safety of the sidewalk at the same time, and couldn't leave one of them there alone in the busy street either.
    Please, either redesign your carts to unlock the wheels once they are back inside the perimeter or get rid of this system. Reducing the risk of cart theft is not worth putting your customers and their children in danger.
    Tuesday, June 7th, 2011
    2:09 pm
    Got mail from the Metropolitan Museum of Art today. The cover letter begins, "In today's world, it often seems as if everything is getting faster and faster. Art, however, has a way of inviting us to shift gears and slow down."

    Enclosed was their Christmas catalog.
    Friday, May 27th, 2011
    2:36 pm
    I had a dream last night that I was taking a pregnancy test. When I looked to see the plus or minus sign, I realized that it was one of those with words on it. I looked to see if it said "pregnant" or "not pregnant" but it said "you've got to be kidding". I was relieved to wake up!
    Monday, May 9th, 2011
    4:43 pm
    Steve, to me: I don't know what you do all day! All I ever see you do is laundry!

    Me: Yup. That's pretty much it.
    Friday, May 6th, 2011
    5:04 pm
    Goodbye LJ... wait, maybe not
    I came here today to post that I was leaving LJ. I noticed that I hadn't been here in a while and most of my friends have moved on to Facebook. But then I thought I'd read my friends page first, and got sucked in. So I am sticking around for a while longer, but probably much less frequently than I had. I'll put alternate contact info for me on my profile page though, so if I"m ever gone for a long, long time you'll know where to find me.
    Monday, April 4th, 2011
    6:48 pm
    Ugh, I spent about 5 hours throwing up in the middle of the night and pretty much spent the night on the bathroom floor. We were trying to clean out our fridge yesterday and use up all our old food... guess I took a few too many chances and ate something bad.

    On another note, today I saw Robert laying on the floor with John Paul, whispering to him. I told him, "I'm so glad you like your little brother." "Yeah," he said, "I do. I was telling him that we can't be happy without him, because he makes us happy." Now he did also point out that the Lego Star Wars game also makes him happy and that he couldn't be happy without it either, but it warmed my heart to see the connection between my two little boys.
    Friday, April 1st, 2011
    6:30 pm
    Well-child dr. checkups today. Claire is in the 20th percentile for height and 5-10th percentile for weight. John Paul is in the 80th for both height and weight, and the 90th for head size!
    Wednesday, March 30th, 2011
    5:01 pm
    haha
    I got my little brother's wedding invitation in the mail today. It was very fancy and formal. But the response card had the following options:

    Will attend
    Regretfully Decline
    Regretfully Will Attend
    Enthusiastically Decline
    Decline to respond but will eventually attend

    I'm glad to see they're having fun with this!
    Saturday, March 19th, 2011
    10:39 pm
    I need Imse Vimse flat diapers!
    I was wondering if you mamas could help me out. In the past I have dyed Imse Vimse organic flat diapers (the larger size) different colors and used them as lightweight swaddling blankets. I have several friends who are expecting (as well as a cloth diaper / natural baby store) and I was going to order about 4-6 packs of these diapers, but Imse Vimse tells me they are sold out and might not be getting any more. So here's my question: does anyone know a good source to get these? Or, does anyone know a good source to get super-lightweight muslin fabric cheaply? It's halfway in between bedsheets and cheesecloth (as far as texture goes), like the Aiden and Anais blankets, only much less expensive. TIA!
    Monday, February 21st, 2011
    7:56 pm
    How To Go Grocery Shopping With Four Children
    1. Have dinner made ahead of time, or, in my case, have someone bringing you dinner.

    2. Feed and change the baby before leaving the house.

    3. Promise the older kids a treat if they behave. Warn them they will lose their treat if they start misbehaving.

    4. Have a detailed list.

    Good list: oatmeal, milk, cheddar cheese, bananas, peanut butter, whole wheat flour.
    Bad list: oatmeal, milk, 4 dinners and 3 lunches, breakfast stuff

    5. Put the baby in a carrier, the two year old in a cart, the diaper bag and the carseat in another cart. Have the 7 year old push the diaper bag cart while you push the cart where the food will go. Have the 5 year old hold onto your cart.

    6. Walk fast. The baby will scream if you don't.

    7. The 5 and 7 year old can follow simple instructions like "Put 5 of those apples in this bag." This can speed things up a bit.

    The End!
    Wednesday, February 2nd, 2011
    10:57 pm
    Overheard on the internet
    In a discussion on why the "contraversial new breakthrough" that being overweight might not be as unhealthy as we thought...

    "Never attribute to malice what can be adequately attributed to stupidity. The mainstream press is notoriously awful at covering science/engineering/medical stories of all kinds, because the stories inevitably go through multiple layers of dumbing down and sensationalising. The scientists have to put out a press release that journalists can comprehend, because all scientists know that journalists are just morons with art degrees. The journalists then have to dumb it down a bit and focus on one or two points that they can build some sort of narrative around, because all journalists know that the general public are semi-literate morons. Then the editors have to punch it up a bit, exaggerating those one or two points out of all proportion and packaging the story either as a "major breakthrough" or a "controversial new finding", because all editors know that the general public are not just semi-literate morons, but semi-literate morons with the attention span of guppies."
    8:45 am
    The day is turning out worse, and therefore better, than expected
    So Steve didn't actually go to work today because... we're having rolling blackouts! 15 minutes off for every 1 hr 45 minutes on, for the entire state. Apparently we are in a state of emergency with how cold it's gotten (9 degrees last night, I think it was). So, still stuck inside a house with sick kids and a new baby and can't go outside or drive anywhere, but - I have a husband with me and that makes a huge difference.
    Tuesday, February 1st, 2011
    6:51 pm
    I am going to go insane because the world already has
    There is a layer of ice on the inside of our kitchen window. The curtains froze to the curtain rod. It's going to get down to 9 degrees tonight. There is still ice everywhere, and school is closed for a second day tomorrow. Steve has to go back to work, so I will be home with three kids (who are getting over the flu), a not-quite two week old baby, and nobody can go outside. Oh, and I haven't done grocery shopping in two weeks.

    If Netflix goes down I will scream.
    Monday, January 31st, 2011
    9:57 am
    Flu!
    Steve, Johanna, Robert, and Claire all have the flu. Steve's been sick for almost a week so hopefully he will be getting better soon, but J and R just started getting sick yesterday (R) and today (J) so we have a while.

    Steve didn't get a flu shot this year, and J and R didn't get their's until about 4 weeks ago so their immunity isn't up yet. Claire got the kids' version which apparently isn't as strong/effective which is why she got it anyway.

    My doctor has me on Tamiflu as a preventive, and also because I've felt like I'm coming down with a mild cold for about 5 days now. I'm just hoping and praying that what they told me is true - that full immunity is achieved 6 weeks after the shot and that immunity is passed to the unborn baby, because *I* did get my flu shot 6-8 weeks before John Paul was born. I have never been so glad I got one because if he got the flu at this age, it would be very, very bad.

    As it is, Steve has extended his time off by two days, so instead of going back to work today he's home today and Tuesday. I'm just praying I can get through the rest of the week with a new baby and three sick kids without him.
    Thursday, January 27th, 2011
    8:48 am
    John Paul Gregory
    John Paul Gregory was born January 21 around 9 pm. He was 7 lbs 13 oz and 20 1/2 inches long, with a full head of dark hair.

    Labor was a long (for me) 15 hours so I've been taking some time to just rest up. I'll probably still be scarce online for a while.
    Tuesday, January 18th, 2011
    9:34 pm
    Our new ratties
    I can't remember if I posted about our new rats or not but I thought I'd give an intro/update on them.

    We still have Annabelle, who is still my favorite. She is so affectionate, she loves nothing more than to sit on my shoulder and brux (the happy teeth-grinding noise rats make when they're happy). She likes me to pet her and will "groom" me back.

    Then we have Coco, who is a very dark brown with a white spot on her belly and white hands and feet. They remind me of little marshmallows.

    And Coco's "sister" (previous cagemate) Sable. It took us a few days to name Sable. She is also a dark brown, but with lighter colored reddish fur mixed in.

    We adopted those last two from Petco. They're not as pretty as some of the ones they had for sale but are much, much better personalities. All three of them at this point will come to the edge of the cage and take treats from our hands, and none have bitten anyone. When we left the cage door open last night, Annabelle of course came right out to play, but Coco followed not too long after. Sable has been here a day or two less than Coco so she's still getting used to things.

    They all get along much better than Annabelle and Dinosaur ever did. We no longer hear scuffling and loud shrieking from the rats several times a night. The most we hear is quiet squeaking, for example the other day Annabelle sat on Coco. But it was really her own fault - Coco apparently wanted to sit where Annabelle was sitting and tried to nudge her out of that place with her nose. A stayed put, so C tried again, at which point A raised up her rear and sat on C's head. So then Coco squeaked till Annabelle let her up. A is the dominant rat right now but I think eventually Coco may take that. Sable seems to be pretty laid back (or old, no one could tell me their age) so I don't think she'll end up being the top rat. But no matter who ends up the boss I think they'll all get along nicely. I see them all cuddled up together sleeping during the day, which was the main reason I wanted 3 instead of 2. When we just had 2 they would often do their own thing but now that there are 3 they are a more cohesive group.
    1:41 pm
    No more baby updates
    The pressure of going past my due date is getting to me, so there will be no more baby updates until he's actually born. (He's doing fine, plenty of amniotic fluid and all, just not ready to be born for some reason.) Just wanted to let you all know.
    Monday, January 17th, 2011
    9:17 am
    Forgot to update yesterday, but no baby yet. I have successfully conquered a due date for the first time in my life, however.
    Saturday, January 15th, 2011
    6:16 pm
    no baby yet. Sigh.
    Thursday, January 13th, 2011
    8:54 pm
    No baby yet, but here's something I wanted to share. On Mark Shea's blog (Catholic author, blog is markshea.blogspot.com) he wrote an article on the shootings in Arizona. I've been hearing a lot of debate all over the internet and talk radio about whose inflamatory political speech inspired the shooter, and I thought Mark's words were sobering and yet inspiring. Here are excerpts:

    The simple fact is, American culture is full of the glorification of violence on all sides.

    So does that mean "we all shot those people in Tuscon"?

    No. It mean something far worse: we all crucified Jesus Christ.

    Asking who bears the guilt for what happened on Tucson is another way of asking "What's Wrong with the World?" Answer: I am. My dismissive and abusive tongue helped hell here. My flippancy and contempt helped damage respect for other people and encourage people like Loughner to embrace complete contempt. My anger at people helped encourage the Loughners of the world in theirs. My sins against Christian liberty will make it easier for those who seek to destroy that liberty to do so.

    The doctrine of solidarity means not, "let's be socialist" but that we are all in Adam (and Christians are in Christ) for good and for ill. My sins hurt you and your acts of obedience help me.
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