Monday, September 29, 2008

brace face part 2

Friends! I have braces! But only 1/2. Lemme splain.

I went in to the office this morning, fully prepared to have the metal braces put on top and bottom. I met my doc (super nice!), watched a video on how to floss/brush/take care of the braces, had moldings made (remember those? the goo in the tray you have to hold in your mouth for a couple minutes until it hardens?), and finally got ready for my grill.

My doc looked at my teeth and said, "I think I'm going to just put braces on your bottom teeth to help straighten them. And then you'll come back in 10 weeks and we'll put braces on the top with rubberbands and work on your bite. Sound good?" I was shocked, but stoked! Only half?? Yes please! That way I can ease into things, get used to have some (not all), and I can still smile without the full metal mouth for another two and a half months! Woot.

Me, showing off my mouth bling:

Yes, they hurt. Eating today has been...interesting. But in the long term, this will all be worth it.

Friday, September 26, 2008

brace face

I am still in shock.

On Monday I will be going in to an orthodontist office and getting braces put on my teeth. Those metal monstrocities will be in my mouth for 12-18 months.

I am an ADULT. And I'm going to be wearing braces like a 13 year old.

What. The. Crap.

Let me back up.

So do you all remember when I went to see a TMJ specialist back in Feb. or March? It turns out I was clenching and grinding my teeth at night so my jaw was always sore and I would wake up with headaches. He made me a "splint" (mouth guard) that fit perfectly to my teeth. I had to wear it for 6 months. Well, I just finished. Yeah, go team.

So then step 2 for my teeth was to get a consultation with an orthodontist about Invisalign. Have you heard of it? It's like having braces but they're clear! And you can remove them to eat and brush your teeth! Perfect, right?

So that appointment was today. I met Angie, the sweet funny lady who is the office manager. She asked questions about my dental history and why I wanted invisalign. "Well Angie," I began, "I had braces twice growing up (8-10 and then 11-13 years old), but my ortho never gave me a retainer afterwards so my bottom teeth have gone a bit crooked. I thought invisalign would be a great way to straighten them without all the hassle of regular braces."

So Angie takes tons of pictures of my teeth and emails them to my soon-to-be orthodontist (who was out of the office). He calls her, they chat. She hangs up and tells me they both notice that my "bite" is off. Huh? My top back molars don't come down correctly onto my bottom molars. That could have been the cause of my grinding and other issues. And they said if I don't get that fixed, I might have to wear a splint/mouth guard for the rest of my LIFE.

Here's the catch: invisalign wouldn't be able to help with my "bite" problem. Yes they could fix my crooked teeth, but not the bite. Soooooo...either get invisalign for 6-8 months and fix one problem orrrrrr get regular braces for 12-18 months and fix both problems.


I was sitting there, freaking out. I didn't want braces again. I remember how much of a pain they were: wires breaking, wax to cover where they cut into my mouth and lips, every-other-week appointments to tighten (ouch!), rubberbands, not to mention all the lovely foods I would have to say goodbye to (popcorn, candy, apples, nuts, chips, etc). I had not even thought about getting regular braces - I had only thought about how much life would change with invisalign (answer: not that much). This was a whole new ballgame.

But as you can tell from the beginning of the blog, I went for the metal. *sigh*

People I have a bone to pick with:

* Dr. Laughlin, my orthodontist as a kid. Dude, you put me in braces not once but twice. And you still couldn't fix my bite? And what's the deal with not giving me a retainer afterwards? Aren't you required by law to do that? I want my (mom's) money back.

* whoever choose the health benefits at my work (this is not covered)

* my mom and dad for passing down their genetically bad teeth

People I appreciate in this situation:

* Angie - total cheerleader for me. Answered all my questions, calmed fears, made it seem not so bad, she is great.

* my grandma Judy who left me (and my sisters) some money when she passed away. That's the only way I can afford this. It's like buying a used car. Grandma J - these teeth are for you!

* anyone over 20 who has had to get braces as an adult. Please tell me it's not as bad as I think it is!

This is my last weekend as a metal-free mouth. I plan to go out and eat a big steak tonight with my friends to celebrate that I CAN. As of Monday, that all changes...

Sunday, September 21, 2008

amazing weekend

This past weekend was off the hook. (I don't think people say that anymore, but oh well)

Friday - roomates Annie and Lori and I headed to a farm where you can pick apples and strawberries! I have never done that...picking straight from the tree and plant. We put our hair in pigtails and listened to country music the whole way there. When we arrived, we met an 80 year old man named Norm who was reading a John Grisham novel under a shed out in the field. He showed us where we could pick and informed us it was 2 bucks per pound of apples, $1.50 per pound of berries. Let's go!

I am officially in love with all things farm-related. It was so much fun! After we had picked to our heart's content, we celebrated with a fresh slice of olallieberry pie a la mode right next to the general store/antique shop. Precious.

That night I went out to drinks/appetizers/desserts with all the roomates. One (Jessica) is leaving for New Zealand for 3 months this Tuesday. So it was the last time all 7 of us were going to be together. Another roomate (Copey) works at a ritzy hotel and spa so we went there to par-tay. What a wonderful evening. I love those ladies.

Saturday I did something else I have never done. I went to a barn dance! There is another farm (in the opposite direction of Friday's farm) that has a harvest day, potluck dinner, and barn dance the third Saturday of every month. We heard about it from a friend so we went. Way too much fun! It was so great to see people of all ages and all walks of life coming together to work, enjoy a meal together, and then dance their hearts out. There was a band, a "Caller", and everything. Dance party!! Everyone was sweating, smiling, and laughing the whole time. I took a video of one of the dances we learned (it's after the next few pictures).

And then Sunday after church was something very special. Beach baptisms! I have never been to a beach baptism before (all I have seen have been indoors) but what made it even more special was that I got to assist my boss. It was so humbling and amazing being out in the water and being a part of two of my students' baptisms. It was a church-wide baptism so anyone who wanted to could do it. I think there were 10 of us pastors and directors in the water and we baptized over 80 people. It was incredible!! I will never forget it.

play time!!

amazing weekend.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

My big break!

Some of you may or may not know that High School Musical 3 is coming to theaters next month. Well, I wanted to let you all know that I have a small part in it! Check it out and let me know what you think.

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Monday, September 15, 2008

2 more months till aunthood

Yesterday was sister Amy's baby shower. Two more months till my little nephew joins the outside world! I've been calling him "Eli" whenever I talk to him through Amy's stomach, but I don't think I should get my hopes up. Right now Amy is calling him "Professor Plum" so that he will be respected as soon as he's born and they won't have to pay for his college (he will already be known as The Professor).

Thanks for always letting me rub your tummy, Aim! I can't wait to meet your son. XOXO

Friday, September 12, 2008

Jump Jive An' Wail

For a "Fun Night" this week, we took the college students swing dancing. Because not many of them have been before, I invited my friend Jenn and her fiancee Steve to come teach us the basics. Jenn and Steve are dancin' fools and they are REALLY good. So we pulled the students out into the parking lot and set up a stereo with some swing music. We spent about a half hour learning steps while Jeff and I went around taking pictures and videos. Here's a vid I took of them practicing. Sorry it's so dark (the sun had just gone down).

swing dancing part 1

After that, we piled into cars and headed downtown. There is a ballroom that has swing dancing for only 3 bucks. So we went and danced the night away. Myself and the other adult leaders didn't dance with the students, but luckily there were other people there we could dance with. It was so fun! Some of those guys go every week and they are amazing. Twirl me around, fellas!

Here are some pixs from the evening.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

3 year anniversary

Yesterday was the three year anniversary at my job. I don't know about you, but I try and find any little excuse to celebrate. So when I had my first year anniversary at church, I came to work with signs, a balloon in my hair, and donuts for everyone. And thus began a tradition. I have done the last two years and yesterday was #3.

BRING ON YEAR 4!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, September 07, 2008

2 things

1) We had our college kick-off last Wed. and it went well! Two ladies came and cooked for us so we all ate together (which is always fun). Then we played some get-to-know-you games and introduced our student and adult leaders. Lastly Jeff and I went over our mission statement, core values, and goals of this next year. It was neat to finally be able to share the vision of where we want the college group to go...because we've been planning for it all summer. =) Yeah, the info is out there! Let's go!

2) I had the opportunity to go to a retreat this weekend. It all came together very last minute. I pretty much emailed them the night before and asked if there was still room. There was. =) Looking back, it was exactly what I needed. The speaker hit me right to the core. I love how God does that.

well, I hope you're not too hot, wherever you are (it's been toasty lately). I'm off to take a nap...

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

back to life...back to reality

Labor Day has come and passed. Everyone went back to school today. Summer is officially over. Bummer!

Oh well, at least I got one last weekend of freedom. For Friday and Saturday, my co-worker Jeff and I took our 6 student leaders on a retreat. It was great! One of the first things we did was go grocery shopping. Jeff and I split the leaders into groups of 2 and assigned either "appetizer", "entree", or "dessert" to each group. To make it more fun, we told them the theme of the dinner was "Disney" (they had to somehow relate their food to Disney in some way). Oh and they couldn't tell anyone else what they were buying so it could be a surprise. Here's a video I took with my digital camera:

shopping for dinner

We cooked together, played games, made videos, watched movies, had meetings to talk about college group stuff, went to Starbucks, all that jazz. I came back Saturday night feeling good about our student leadership this year but totally wiped out.

Sunday and Monday I got to spend time with my fam. Last year they started a tradition of renting a cabin out for Labor Day weekend - we all gather and spend the weekend together. I missed the first two days because of the retreat, but I joined them for the rest of the time. They were able to come to church with me Sunday morning which was so fun! And then we spent our last two days of freedom eating, reading, creek-walking, talking, playing Uno, making s'mores, catching up on each other's lives, and making comments about sister Liz's dirty feet. Older sister Amy is 6 and a half months pregnant! Ahhh! I made sure to rub her belly a lot and speak to my nephew about how excited we were for him to join us soon.

Hope you all had a nice, relaxing Labor Day weekend.

Back to life...back to reality.

reality = college group starts up tomorrow night!!