Thursday, November 15, 2007

It's a Girl thing

Sometimes I hate being a girl. One of the reasons
on my list is that my body often deals with stress by crying. I hate crying (not always, I don't mind crying if it's for a good reason). But this whole crying while stressed out thing just makes me feel like such a girl!

The reason this all comes up is simply because yesterday was one of those days. I am buried so deep in my classes that I don't feel like I can come up for air. I need to have a meltdown and I simply don't have time for it. So, after I somewhat inappropriately let one of my professors have an ear full. I left the building and cried all the way home. And you know, not just crying but uncontrollable sobbing. In the end it made me feel better physically but it has been annoying my brain ever since.

Why is it that no matter what I accomplish in my life, stress can still reduce me to feeling like I need my mommy?

Right now, aside from the fact that I have a test tomorrow that I have no hope of passing, I feel better. I feel like I can really handle the rest of this semester. Of course my story may be different after taking my test tomorrow! Part of what got me over the hump is the simple realization that if I need to, I can just take my Proof Writing in Modern Algebra class over again next semester if I need to. I'm taking Linear Algebra for the 2nd time and I am really enjoying it AND understanding it this time around. So perhaps I just need to come to terms with the fact that my 40 year old brain needs to hear something twice to really get it.

And I'm OK with that!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007


Almost since the day she was born, my Princess was prone to sinus infections. And I mean a TON of sinus infections. We have a well worn path from our door to the door of our pediatrician's office. Princess moved to a new school this year and my pediatrician moved her office at the end of August so that it is squarely between my house and her new school. Just for me, wasn't that nice of her? Well, sure that last part is a stretch - but she DID move her office and I like to live in my little fantasy world.

The infections always seem to be at their worst when she is getting teeth, but they also were acutely seasonal, and as I am allergic to everything we made our appointment at the allergist office to get her tested. Poor kid, asthma (which I have been spared) and she's allergic to just about every tree and mold and pet you can imagine. So, we started allergy shots. They seemed to help initially, but now here we are three years later and she has yet another sinus infection. So, with her pediatrician's approval I had it out with our allergist and we are just going to treat Princess with OTC meds (I should mention her asthma is finally under control so this is no longer an issue). Her allergist, of course, was none to happy - but I refuse to continue to get shots every month when we are not really seeing any significant improvement.

Now, you are sitting there wondering if there is a point to this story, right? Well, there is! I just adore my pediatrician. She was with me from the time Princess was little and she was at my son's funeral...she knows I'm an overprotective often paranoid mom and she just puts up with me. But I love her for more than that. She completely cracks me up!

Back when school was starting we were at her office to get Princess allergy shots and as her birthday was around the corner I asked the receptionist if Princess was due for a physical. Seems she was due LAST year when she turned 9. OOPS! Bad mommy! In all of our defense we are in there so often...

Last week we arrived on time for our scheduled physical. They called us back 25 minutes later. I was NOT amused! Princess has been complaining about her feet hurting so that was one of the first things we looked at. Tendonitis in both feet. Seriously? Leave it to my kid. (Since then we bought orthopedic arch supports and that has helped her right foot, but her left foot doesn't seem to be cooperating.) While we were there I asked Dr S if I should be concerned about Princess' weight. This girl drinks more water than any child should. She doesn't like soda, rarely drinks juice let alone anything resembling something sweet. Her perfect breakfast is a bowl of plain cheerios in 2% milk and some of her favorite Dole peaches (not in the cheerios, on the side please). And she never (and I do mean never) stops moving! My favorite doctor looked at her growth chart and told me that there was no need to worry. Princess is in the 85% for her age for height and about the 93% for weight. She said it's just the way God made her, and she's perfectly healthy and perfectly normal for who she is...and THEN she held up a piece of paper to block her face and Princess' from me and she said "there's something called genetics and it helps with how we are made. ask your mom about it later. don't forget. genetics"

I just had to laugh. I tell Princess all the time that she is built like me. Broad shoulders and wide hips. Oh sure, my hips are a ton wider now that I am 40 pounds overweight, but they have always been wide. Poor kids is build just like me. And thanks to the pediatrician, Princess will always know that it's my fault! Ya gotta love a doctor like that :-)

Monday, November 12, 2007

Late Veteran's Day entry

It's late, and I should have done a Veteran's Day post YESTERDAY, but leave it to me to be late. It's OK though, I forgive myself ;-)

Becky went crazy today and posted her basic training picture. YIKES! It got me to wondering if I could find mine. HA! Silly me. I am so unorganized there was no chance of that. Honestly I seem to have very few pictures of me in uniform at all. More than 8 years in uniform and nothing to show for it. Being the smart girl that I am...I called mommy. And you know what? SHE couldn't find my basic training picture either. That makes me feel so much better, because SHE is the organized one in the family.

There was a time in my life when I had time to scrapbook and I was THIS close to having my pictures organized. That dream is long since gone and I don't see it being a reality for a good 5 years at least. Of course, now that everything is digital my problem is they are all still on my computer and not printed. Oh wait, but at least they're almost organized on my computer, right?

So...Veteran's Day. Today our young men and women are joining the services knowing that it is quite likely they will find themselves in the midst of a war. But they sign up nonetheless. When I took the oath back in 1987 I had no idea that our country would shortly find itself in the midst of Desert Storm. Much like I had no idea that 2001 the future of our country's path would be irreversibly changed by the terrorist attacks of 9/11.

We are blessed in this country to have an Army (and Navy and Marines and Air Force and Coast Guard) of volunteers. Isn't that amazing? Isn't it amazing that what we have here in the United States is so precious....that people feel so strongly about how great our democracy is that they volunteer to protect us against whatever will come next. It touches my heart like few things in this world can.

And speaking of touching your heart. Here's a story that got a lot of coverage (at least in our little corner of the world) today. Socks for Soldiers. An enterprising young lady found out that soldiers in Afghanastan have cold feet so she is gathering wool socks from now until mid December and then sending a shipment over. You've seen the movies. Soldiers are often in those boots for more hours than we care to think about. And lets not forget that most of them are young men (and you KNOW young men, their hygiene is marginal in normal conditions let alone deployed in a strange country!). I think it's a fabulous idea! If you can't get through to the article, here's how it ends: Donated wool socks for troops serving in Afghanistan can be mailed to: D. Mansfield, 7136 Pine Lake Road, Fort Wayne, IN 46814, where they will be packaged for shipment. Cash donations to defray shipping costs are appreciated.

Now, for your amusement. The pictures that I did find. Let it never be said that I always looked good in uniform ;-)

And because I don't want you thinking that I always look like a total geek, I give you me (with my 1st ex husband...ya, I have NO luck with men, what can I say? But weren't we adorable?)

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Where did "I" go?

I'm sure every mother asks herself that questions at one point or another (perhaps many, many times over?)

"Just where did I go?"

Maybe that's part of my funk lately. Sometimes I feel like this never ending mommy train that I'm on has just hijacked my life and I'm searching for part of me that I fear I will never get back. Is that possible? If I crunch the numbers I find 10 years between the time I graduated from high school and had my first child. That's 10 grown up years sans children. (ah, those were the days!) Now it's been 12 years since I added the title mommy to my resume. That means more adult years spent in the mommy camp.

Being back in college full-time I find myself having most of my daily conversations with classmates who are...well, let's just say I'm old enough to be their mother. (And how did I get THAT old?!) There are days when I hear myself talking and every other sentence out of my mouth has something to do with Princess. I'm not saying that's a bad thing, but does it mean that I have lost the part of myself that I find interesting? I'm hoping it's just a combination of the fact that I adore her so much AND the fact that I spend most of my time with of course I'm going to talk about her.


I don't know. Sometimes it just feels like I'm drowning in this whole mommy gig. Not completely in a bad way. I think it's OK that part of me has grown into a mom. Just who was I before I had kids, anyway? Do I want that old me back? Why do I worry that part of me is gone if it's a part of me that I don't really need back? So many questions that need answers. Or do they really need answers?

I know I looked at myself in the mirror this morning and I hardly recognized myself. Somehow I have suddenly started to look old. This revelation made me wonder if I will be single forever. Not sure why my mind went there but it did. And not wanting to dwell on that question - my mind then moved on to the whole mommy dilemma. I have more answers for that part of my life than I do for the relationship part. Most days I am content for it to be just Princess and me. Probably due to the fact that I have made poor, poor choices in my past relationships. I barely have time for school in my life, and adding a man to that mix would force me to make choices I am not ready to make. It's all complicated and jumbled in my head.

Is it just the "grass is always greener"? When I lay out all my cards at the end of the day there is no place I would rather be. Right here, right now, this is where I am meant to be and most of the time I am happy to say that this is where I am.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Just a little dusty

There are times when being a mother is just a thankless job.

Princess has been facing a lot of changes in the last few months. I recognize that and I have truly been trying to take it easy as far as discipline goes.

But, you know how kids are...give them an inch and they take a mile.

I guess that's not necessarily a "kid" thing, given the same circumstances we all take the path of least resistance and try to find out just how much we use something to our advantage.

I'm OK with that.

I'm also OK with the fact that she is ten. You know, the closer she gets to the teen years the more and more unpredictable her emotions become. I get that.


Lately it has been like pulling teeth to get her to do anything. Homework, taking her plate to the kitchen, rinsing off dishes, simply getting dressed and ready on time. She seems to be under the mistaken impression that if she throws a tantrum for long enough she will get her own way. We have lived together for 10 years. She KNOWS this is not true. She knows it will work with Grandma, and sometimes her dad. But she knows it does not work with me.

So, what? Is she just TRYING to get on my last nerve? Because she is succeeding! Take the other day for example. It was past time to clean her room and since part of her closet is used for storage I told her I would work on that. Meanwhile I wanted her to try some clothes on because she has grown like another 12 feet in the last few months. When she refused I told her that was fine, but she was staying in her room and there would be no other activity until she had made progress. Now I'm sure you see where this is going. She told me I was the meanest mother on the face of the planet and proceeded to slam every door she could lay her hands on (yup, she's a slammer). When dinner was ready she said she wasn't hungry. And, being the MEAN mom that I am I made her sit at the table anyway (so, OK, maybe that part was a little bit for my benefit because I enjoyed finding yet another way to tick her off....but I also knew she was hungry and that if she came down she would eventually eat, which she did....YIPPEE ME! I'm a smart mommy!)

I know, I know! That's a typical exchange...and maybe I just want somebody to tell me that it will get better. Just remember that when you tell me it WILL get better - don't mention the fact that it's gonna take another 10 years before it does :-)

And just to remind myself that she really is adorable

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

What the heck!

Sometimes I wonder how I can go so long without taking time to post. When I bother to take the time to put it all down on a page, it makes me feel so much better!

School is stressful. And getting more so every minute. There are so many days when I just want to throw in the towel. Thankfully there are almost as many days when everything seems to click in place and I remember that I'm almost done. Almost done. That's what I have to keep reminding myself. Although with this double major I seem to have added another year onto my torture which means all next year I'll be in class instead of just one semester. And of course there are 2 semesters of student teaching after that.

Ya gotta love teaching. It's bad enough that most internships are unpaid, but to be a teacher you have to PAY for an internship. What the heck? Does that seem fair?? I know, I know, it's all for the best and there's still a lot of learning that goes on in that year so it's best to have it managed by a university.

I'm still struggling to pull up my math GPA. My history GPA is good enough to apply for the college of ed, but my math is still low. I do have 5 classes left, so there's wiggle room - but man these classes are NOT getting any easier! I'm just going to die if I have to do my student teaching in history! I know it's only a year and once I graduate with 2 degrees nobody is going to be checking my math GPA. Did I mention I really, really don't want to student teach in history? Just the thought of assigning projects and papers and then having to grade them....YIKES! It makes my head spin!

And completely off topic. Princess was playing on the laptop tonight. She has a tendency to try to do too many processes at once, so I taught her how to use ctrl+alt+del to free things up when she gets stuck. So she's playing away and then I hear, "uh mom the screen is upside down". I looked and just had to laugh. The whole display was upside down, including the cursor which meant it was working backwards (or well, i guess upside down). She was just in a panic. It was so cute. She thought she really broke it! So I showed her that she had just hit ctrl+alt+arrow instead of del and that it was easy enough to fix. Of course then she wanted to try to turn the display sideways both ways and upside down again.

She's easily amused. What can I say??

And (because I'm so thankful that football season is almost over) here's the obligatory "oh isn't she adorable picture" of her majesty!

Monday, October 08, 2007

Long Overdue

Goodness! The 10th birthday celebration was a huge success. Princess has wonderful new friends! I picked up all the girls from school and we headed right to Build-A-Bear. I'll tell you, that place has the market cornered on how to show girls a good time! We had our very own employee assigned to us for the hour we were there. She helped the girls pick out their animals and stuff them and then played a couple games while she got them all sewed up. Later she had them play another game while they were dressing their new friends and snapped a couple of polaroids for Princess to take with her. Since she was the birthday girl, Princess got an "autograph" bear that all her party guests got to sign. Then each of the girls got a couple little treats in their houses to go along with their friends. It was so much fun to watch them picking out the perfect animal and then the perfect outfit. Four of them picked out the same dog! (but they did pick different outfits so we could at least tell them apart!). Come to find out three of the girls had never even been to Build-A-Bear before...and one had never even been to the mall! Whoa, how weird is that?! After our adventure at the mall we headed to Princess' favorite pizza place. We order from there a lot with my parents so the owners know us. I called a few days before and she said we were welcome to bring our own cake and a few decorations if we wanted to. The girls pigged out and then I delivered them home safe and sound. Of course by the time I dropped them off and got us back home it was after 7. What a long day! But worth it. I haven't seen Princess smile that much in such a long time. Here's a couple pics from our perfect day ;-)

Turns out our party leader had been a cheerleader in high school so when she found out she had a group of junior cheerleaders on her hands she had them show her their favorite cheer. Thankfully it was Wednesday afternoon at the mall so there were hardly any customers to be bothered by these VERY loud girls!

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Touchy Touchy!

Perhaps I am just overly sensitive today. I have certainly been stressed more than usual with tests coming up at school, a paper I just handed in and then the big birthday today.

But, you KNOW how I love to complain.... so here goes.

Nice secretary lady at school....this nice woman is one of the main reasons I chose this school for Princess. She was SO nice, on the phone and in person. Answered ever single one of my million questions. A couple weeks ago she got snippy with me about Princess missing a couple days of school. (and may I just add here, she is my daughter and if I say she doesn't have to go to school then I don't think the school secretary should be second guessing me!). So, I let that slide because heck, maybe she was having a bad day, or maybe I was....

And then there was today. I arrived at school a few minutes early to make sure all the girls had come complete with notes allowing them to leave school with me and not get on the bus. Turns out only one of them didn't have a note, but she called her mom and got the OK over the phone. As she's on the phone the secretary looks at me and gives me this really snotty tone and says "I hope you have a lot of seat belts". Right, I'm going to take 6 girls and not have enough seat belts. And if that WAS my plan; would I really tell the school secretary?


I know, I know, it's no big deal. I'm making a mountain out of a mole hill and I should just take a deep breath and go to sleep.

As a matter of fact, that sounds like a perfect plan!

I guess that means the grand birthday party story (complete with pictures I'm sure) will have to wait until tomorrow. At which point, I promise to be in a better mood :-)

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

No more pretending

There comes a point in every mom's life when she realizes that she can't fool herself anymore. Her youngest is no longer anything anybody would call a "child". She's well into that transition somewhere between girl and teen. A mind of her own and a mouth to match it.

...and tomorrow she's 10 *sigh*

But, of course, she'll always be my baby.

Happy Birthday Princess!

Friday, September 21, 2007

Into the weekend

And so the weekend begins.

Before I start blathering on about the week at hand may I just state the obvious and tell you that I have joined the "people I hate" list and added a playlist to my blog. As I am painfully aware some of you will not share or appreciate my most outstanding taste in music. Just remember that you can click on the II to make it stop (it's over there under my profile if you can't find it!). That will be all for today's public service announcement.

Now, let's just was my week?

Princess has been fighting a nasty cold and keeps waking up in the middle of the night. This makes for a cranky mommy and has not helped my homework one little bit. I had a draft of a paper due today that did not go well. The math homework that was collected was even worse! My nice math prof assigns several problems for us to work on over the week and then collects 1 of those problems. And, of course, the one he collected to day was the one I could NOT solve. Ah well, that's the way the cookie crumbles sometimes.

Did I tell ya' the story about how I drove all the way out to campus after dropping Princess at school...only to realize that I had left MY backpack at home. Thankfully after I drop Princess off and head out to campus I have an hour to spend time working on homework. I like that my schedule worked out the way it did. Gives me a chance to wind down, listen to music and review my work. So, in the grand scheme of things it didn't set me back more than another 27 miles on the odometer - and of course a CRAPPY parking space! If you don't get there before 9, or close to it you end up parking in BFE. Seriously, I hate it! Sure, maybe it's fine for those young kids - but I'm old!

In my Diversity in Education class we are currently discussing the Jena 6. Have you guys heard all the buzz about this case? I find it amazing that people all over the country who really have no first hand knowledge about what is going on (as in they are listening to what all the liberal media tells them) are just up in arms. My class was not amused with my old lady views on the subject. My classmates are all just so young and eager to jump on any bandwagon. Do I think there are serious injustices trying to be balanced in this case. Probably. But my point to my fellow students was we need to step back and maybe look again and wonder how this all began. It was easier for them. It wasn't that long ago they were in high school. So I asked them if there was a popular table in the lunchroom and what they thought would happen if one of the dredges of school tried to sit at it. And here is where I think this confrontation began. I think it had less to do with racism in the beginning and more to do with the worst kind of teen bullying and mean. From there it all spiraled, as ratially charged situations have a tendancy to do. I know it's been all over the TV lately and charges have been changed and some of it has been explained. I doubt that any of us, including many of those who are in the thick of it will ever understand the complete impact of these cases.

*Update* Rick found this great article about the case.

I'm starting to get that feeling in the back of my throat that tells me I'm getting Princess' cold. I told her that today and she said, "well, it's your own fault. You're the one that insisted on hugging and kissing on me even though you knew I was sick". How can you argue with logic like that?

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Some days

It is not even half way through the semester and I'm already in a funk. Not really about school, but I know the stress of the classes always has something to do with my moods. I'm feeling sorry for myself more than usual. Honestly I don't have anybody to blame but myself. I have managed over the past 10 years to all but turn myself into a hermit. I have let friendships slide away into oblivion. Nothing bad, just friends who got tired of me never returning their calls and eventually stopped calling. We still chat once in a while, but they are no longer the friends I can call up and say "hey, let's get together this weekend" or call in the middle of the night when I need to talk.

I guess most of it comes from the fact that given the choice I am not the kind of girl to call anybody up and say either of those things. Left to myself, I would rather be just that, left to myself. I like being alone. Not really "alone". I have wonderful women on the internet that I confide in almost daily and count them as friends. As I get older, as Princess gets older, I wonder if I will enjoy being alone so much when she is grown and moved on. Will I kick myself for cutting some of these women out of my life?

But, then I think....I have a new adventure ahead of me. As I look toward graduating and starting a new career I know I have a fresh start waiting. So, what kind of person do I want to be when I get there? Can I find a way to start letting people into my life?

It's hard. Especially since Josh died, it is just so hard. I feel like I need to "break-in" new friends and acquaintances because frankly most people just don't know how to behave when they find out my son is dead. And sometimes it is just more work than it is worth....especially considering the fact that I love being alone.

So, it's a vicious circle. I have chosen this road for myself, and yet I feel like part of me wants to build that part of my life again. Maybe I just like being alone because at heart I am a selfish person and can't be bothered with anybody else. Maybe I like being alone because over the course of my life the people that I am closest to have done nothing but disappoint and hurt me. I really don't know. Whatever the reason I am most content when I have the house to myself, the TV and computer on and I am doing absolutely nothing.

I can only hope it's because I'm a stressed out mommy/student and that as this status changes I will change to.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

September is...

...childhood cancer awareness month...

This is how I remember him, my Joshua...silly and crazy and everything that a wonderful 4 year old boy is. He turned 5 shortly before he died, but we know now that he was sick even then. My mommy eyes still see my handsome little boy, free from cancer and wanting nothing more than to play hard all day and settle in at night with a good book (Franklin...his favorite turtle) and getting tucked in by mom. Ah, those were the days. The days when I thought children lived forever and nothing could touch us. (read his story here)

I didn't know what other amazing plans were in the Master Plan for my life.

What I know now is that every day children are diagnosed with cancer. And after you've been there, heard those words, you don't want anybody else to have to be in your shoes. Ever.

Thank you to Gigi for sharing these simple warning signs
C ontinued, unexplained weight loss
H eadaches, often with vomiting, at night or early morning
I ncreased swelling or persistent pain in bones, joints, back, or legs
L ump or mass, especially in the abdomen, neck, chest, pelvis, or armpits
D evelopment of excessive bruising, bleeding, or rash
C onstant infections
A whitish color behind the pupil
N ausea which persists or vomiting without nausea
C onstant tiredness or noticeable paleness
E ye or vision changes which occur suddenly and persist
R ecurrent fevers of unknown origin
Not every child with these symptoms has cancer. Only about 1 in 330 children will be diagnosed with cancer....but you should remember that YOU are your child's best advocate. You know your child better than any doctor or team of doctors.

You can find lots more good information HERE.

Everytime you have a chance to donate a balloon, remember that worldwide a classroom full of children have today been diagnosed with cancer and that about 10 of them will lose their battle.
(This ends today's public service announcement ;-)

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

1/2 hour makes a difference

This last week of getting off to school has been blissful. There has been little whining from Princess (and yes, we are still in the honeymoon period with our new school but I have a good feeling about this!). We have gotten out the door on time, even on the days that I have to get to school too. This is the way I wish every morning could go. There is nothing I hate more than having to rush, except for maybe getting out the door late.

I was talking to a mom at the football game tonight (yes, we cheered again tonight, you can tell I'm thrilled, right?) and she made the point that it must be nice that our new school starts a full 1/2 hour after our old school. Yes, it goes 1/2 longer at the end of the day....but that 1/2 hour in the morning really has made a TON of difference. We can now sleep in until 7:30, which seems a lot later than our 7:00 from last year. Waking up Princess has not been as awful. She rolls out of bed with little complaint and once she was even awake before the alarm (which, of course, made mommy none to happy....mommy likes to sleep....well, in the morning, not so much late at night when I am enjoying my solitude).

In the morning, even though we are traveling a few miles farther, it still only takes us 10 minutes to get there. This means we don't have to leave the house until 8:15, which makes me SO happy! I hadn't realized how much I appreciated that 1/2 hour until this other mom mentioned it!

So, more cheerleading stress. Somebody please just put me out of my misery. On Tuesday nights the little guys get to play on the varsity field. Complete with an announcer and the lights turned on...the whole nine yards. This is nice for us poor parents as it means we can sit in bleachers instead of a mish mash of lawn chairs that make their regular appearance at the practice field we usually play on. The cheerleaders get to be on the track instead of in the mud, which is always a plus for those of us who have to do the laundry. Tonight we arrive 1/2 hour early, as we have been told to before each game. Only one cheerleader has arrived before us and most don't roll in for another 15 minutes. The announcer comes by and asks for a list of the cheerleaders (they introduce all the football players and cheerleaders by name before each game and let them run out on the field... it is just too cute...) And coach (who is annoying coordinator's high school daughter) looks blankly at him like he has just asked her for her phone number or something. She has no list. So, I volunteer to go back to my vehicle and get a pen and paper and I set to the task of getting all the names. The night sort of went downhill from there.....although the team we were cheering for did win - so the night was NOT a total loss! And the coach is lucky she didn't get strangled by one of us disgruntled we watched her standing there staring blankly offering little direction to the poor cheerleaders who were freezing their butts off!

But, tomorrow is a new day. And you can wait patiently with me while I see how long it takes somebody to call us and let us know the time and place of our game on Saturday. The schedule is supposed to be posted on Wednesday, but I've got my money on about 7pm Friday night.....

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Still Tired

This week FLEW by. Princess rolled out of bed happy each morning (yes, it was still the first week of school but this is a refreshing change of pace at Princess' castle)

She is adjusting well to the new school, making new friends and impressing her teacher. I had a long week at school and am thankful for the weekend. I still have a ton of homework to do (but somehow no math homework! that's a nice break). Now, please accept my sincerest apologies as the rest of this post turns to one of my least favorite subjects (not my daughter, the cheerleading you silly!)

Another one of the girls in her class decided to join Jr Cheer, but since she only made it to half of a practice before the first game Princess and her friend took in on themselves to teach her a lot of the cheers at recess. By recess on Friday it sounded like they had themselves a full squad of 10 girls that they were teaching cheers too! (what is it with little girls and cheerleading anyway?). Of course any place where Princess gets to be in charge and tell people what to do is OK by her, so she's having a great time!

Last night they got to go cheer at the varsity game for the first quarter. The weather was perfect and the girls all had a great time! Thankfully, however, she didn't want to stay for the rest of the game because after my week at school I really, REALLY did not want to stay at a high school football game for the evening. Today she cheered at her rocket football game and we could not have asked for better weather, or a better time. The game was at 10:30, so we got to sleep in a little and then head over to the field. One of our players got hurt and had to be taken to the hospital for a wrist X-Ray...hopefully he's OK, especially since we got KILLED (22-0...LOL). The girls looked awful (thank you unorganized coach for trying to teach the girls 14 cheers in 4 practices and then expecting them to remember them all for the first game...whatever!)

Oh My Word! Speaking of cheers! We were typing up the words to all the cheers Princess could remember so she can give them to her two classmates to take home. There was one cheer we couldn't remember so we did a web search for cheer words and ended up looking at a ton of new cheers and laughing at how stupid some of them were, but there was one that Princess just went APE over. Made me put it on the sheet even though their squad doesn't do it. Says they are going to make up moves for it at recess and try to convince the coach to let them do it at a game. I'm going to leave you with the cheer, just so you know what I'm dealing with here on a daily basis!

(in your best valley voice)
Like Totally
Fer Sure
I just got a manicure
The sun, I swear
Is bleaching out my gorgeous hair
My make-up is a-smearin'
I think I lost an earring
15 to 24?
I don't even know the score
...Gosh I hope I look alright

Wednesday, September 05, 2007


It's like this...

I have FAR too much homework to do and my brain is fried from thinking about trying to prove the divisibility theorem (doesn't that just sound like fun?)

I do have a few stories to share about Princess' first day of school, but for now...

You can glimpse the short version over at my "other" blog (although can you really consider it a blog if it's on AOhelL?)

Monday, September 03, 2007

The Big Day

We're on the edge of our seats here. Semi-patiently waiting for the first day at a new school. It's almost 11 and Princess can't sleep. A deadly combination of mommy letting her stay up WAY too late last night (ergo she slept in til 10 this morning) and those darn butterflies in the stomach that we all get when we are faced with the unknown.

Let's start first with the confession. I tried my darndest to get Princess to drive up north with me and take a spin on the Dune Rides. She has gone the last two summers in a row, and absolutely loves them. I'm not sure why she didn't want to go. I thought it would be a good diversion. It's a long enough drive that it would end up taking up most of the day. I thought it would be a perfect way to kill a day over the long weekend. Since she didn't want to go I scrambled and tried to come up with some other things to do.

Lots of time with Grandma was a must. I even got some homework done while she played with Grandma (woo hoo). Of course this was about the only homework that I did this weekend and I find myself in the usual position of having a ton to do while she is at school tomorrow. The weather was gorgeous all weekend. We played some tennis. We played lots of tennis actually. Princess even roped Papa into taking her once. Don't get me wrong, we all suck at it. Probably THE most uncoordinated family you ever want to meet. But, we can't let that stand in the way of a good time :-)

Sunday we hit the mall for a bit. I had promised her new earrings for her first day back to school. I should have just taken her to Meijer or Target, but sucker that I am we went to the mall and hit Claires. Of course at this point the day takes a turn for the worse when I get the whole drama queen act. "Can I Puh-Lease get another set of holes in my ears?" ya, right, that's going to happen "BUT MOOOOOOM". So I did what any good mom does when confronted by a tween on a mission. I tried to reason with her. What was I thinking? And of course if I tried to reason with her, you can probably already guess how the exchange ended. Oh, FINE, I admit it! I pulled out the old "because I said so" line. I hate myself. But it was either that or grabbing her by the hair and dragging her through the food court. And, you know, they have laws against that (I'm sure made by some guy who never had to stay home with this kids for a week straight - LOL).

As the day was winding down a thought popped into my head that I had promised to take Princess to the drive-in this summer. She hasn't brought it up in a while and I didn't REALLY need to take her, but she was SO much fun all weekend I thought it might be the night for it. We checked online and as usual there was nothing she could watch at the first movie, but the second feature for one was Hairspray (which we both can't get enough of!). We made the drive and arrived at the theater shortly after 10. The first movie ended up still having about 15 minutes left, so I didn't do TOO bad guessing on time and it gave us a chance to head to the concession stand for (quite possible the worst) popcorn (that I've ever had). You should have SEEN her eyes though when we came around the corner and she saw the 4 big movie screens. It was worth the drive just for that look. All the way out there she kept asking me questions and I finally told her that there was just no way I could explain it to her. There was nothing that she's ever seen to help her put in perspective. Once we got there, she finally said "you're right mom, what i pictured was nothing like this!" So we got back a little late last night (early this morning?).

When I checked on her this morning she was sound asleep with the sun shining RIGHT in her face. You know the girl's tired if she can sleep with that much sun!

But tomorrow will be the big change. A new school. After 4 successful years at an outstanding charter school (part of the National Heritage Academies) it was time for a change. We had some (academic) issues that were not being resolved, and while I know the grass is not always greener, it helped to make my decision that a change should be made now rather than later. While we were at Grandma's earlier today she got her nails done. Then tonight she spent a LOT of time trying to pick out the perfect first day of school outfit. At bedtime she asked me if I was going into school with her. I told her that I had to go into the office because I need to bring in the original copy of her birth certificate and shot records (which I had already faxed). They start out with recess so I told her she could either come in with me or stay out and play if she felt like it, but that she didn't have to decide tonight.

I think I'm more scared than she is. I mean, what if they don't like her? What if she doesn't like them? What if I made the wrong choice and this is the worst year of her life?

I'm not sure I'll be sleeping much tonight either.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

She is SUCH a girl!

I love my daughter, really I do...but she is SUCH a girl!

I swear if ONE more tube of lip gloss melts anywhere in my house I am going to make HER clean it up. She sails through life blindly putting nail polish on her nails wherever she finds to sit (translated this means I have random spots of pink nail polish on furniture and carpets). She takes nail polish off sometimes in the middle of some random room. There are SPARKLES all over her dresser. It's my mother's fault really. She doesn't see it as a problem for Princess to leave open bottles of nail polish remover wherever she happens to park herself.

That was until the bottle tipped over and stripped the finish off the corner of her dining room table. Which grandma claims she doesn't like anyway so who cares. And whenever we are at Grandma's house she thinks it is adorable that Princess just makes a huge mess wherever she goes. It's like a mini tornado has hit!

The child is just hopeless!

(Oh my gosh, U of M lost to WHO? Appalachia State? I can't even spell it let alone who's heard of them??)

Yesterday she insisted on going out in her denim skirt and cowboy boots. Did I mention she's only NINE?? It drives me nuts!

Last year their cheer coach insisted that they would learn something about football. I thought that was a good idea, but the only information she really learned was that a score is called a touchdown. And that, of course, only because one of their cheers is T-O-U-C-H-D-O-W-N. I guess it's better than nothing! I flipped past football tonight and left it there for a minute and she asked me how you could tell the difference between offense and defense. When they lined up I told her that there would be one man on the field that had his hands on the ball and their team is the offense. Easy enough, right, well then her little mind is going a mile a minute and from somewhere inside her brain she says "so that's the quarterback that tells all the other guys what to do, right". Thinking she was on to something I said "right, and the guy who hands the ball to the quarterback is the center....'cause you know he's right in the middle". She looks at me and being the smart 9 year old that she is (or smart alleck as the case may be) she says "well then wouldn't it make more sense to call him the quarter front if he hands the ball to the quarterback"

How can you argue with logic like that?

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Me Time

I've sort of been blog surfing tonight and it made me wonder why so many of us choose this as a form of release. Is it emotional? For satisfaction? I suppose probably a little bit of both. Some people are brave enough to do this as a means of staying in contact with their families. I'm not sure I could let anybody I know IRL into this corner of me. Not that I'm complicated, or hiding anything...I'm just not sure I'm ready for anybody to know ALL of me.

Talking about things here frees up my head for "dealing" with every day life. I can come here and dump and then get up the next morning feeling refreshed. Putting some of this out into the cosmos makes room for new stuff to come in, and lets me step back and look at what is really going on inside my head.

I don't think of myself as an outstanding writer. I do like to write, and I think most of the time I get my point across. And I don't mean this to sound as if I'm getting up on a high horse, but after blog surfing tonight I do wonder why some people write. Some can barely put together a cohesive paragraph and others type no more than a few sentences in each post. So, obviously blogging is not just for those of us who feel comfortable writing. It's more of a draw than just the writing. There is something else that sucks us in.

I wonder what I would do if my IRL friends ever found my blogs. I don't speak of them here, so in that respect I am safe. But I do put a lot of what makes me tick here. Would they be scared when they see the depth of my grief. Would they recognize parts of me within these pages? Or would the person here seem like a stranger to them?

I know that the blogs that keep me coming back are ones much like mine. Women (and men) who talk about their daily life. People who bare a little bit of their souls inside each new post. I like to see that I'm not the only one struggling...that I'm not the only one completely confused! So perhaps that is why we blog? To make the world a little bit smaller? To make our doorstep a little bit bigger? I'd like to think this common thread makes us all part of one great big subdivision.

It IS a small world after all.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Silently Screaming

I survived! Yeah me!

no, no, not my first day of school (although I managed to get out of that fairly unscathed, only 100 pages of reading for History and several problems for both my math classes all due Wed. What happened to the first day of class consisting of going over the syllabus and getting to know each other?!)

So, if it wasn't MY first day of school, you may ask, "Kelly, just WHAT did you survive?"

I survived the first day of Princess' 2nd year of Junior Cheer. I have to tell you what a great accomplishment this is. I still have a sour taste in my mouth from last year (translate that as coaches telling you to arrive 30 minutes prior to the game and then rolling in themselves about 15 minutes prior to the game, and oh did I mention their daughters were of course on the team so no matter how many of us were there we couldn't even do anything! and really that was just the tip of the iceburg).

This year started no different. On a whim last weekend I thought I'd check the website because we hadn't gotten a call from a coach about picking up uniforms or pictures. I saw on the website that uniforms were being handed out the next day (last monday) and just as I was getting ready to call the coordinator, she calls me (this is about 5 Sunday night mind you). Needless to say I'm not thrilled but she explains that she is waiting to hear from a couple moms and our team doesn't have a coach yet, but we'll get it all figured out. OK, I can live with that, but OH wait. Another mom (who's daughter is a friend of Princess and cheered with her last year) WE volunteered to coach the team this year. We figured it couldn't be any worse than what we put up with last year! So Monday as we are picking up uniforms we tell coordinator again, hey we're willing to coach. Oh no, that's OK, my daughter is going to do it. Hmm, interesting. I don't know how old her daughter is but probably early 20s and explain to me again why you wouldn't want to get parents involved?!

Now fast forward a few days to the fact that pictures were yesterday afternoon at 1. Nobody ever called us. Nope, so we showed up at the field and several of us were NONE to happy. Coordinator comes around and makes sure everybody knows who their coaches are, as there are team pictures after. Since we hadn't gotten a call I said "practices still going to be thurs & fri?" she turns around and says "no, Monday". To which I reply "as in TOMORROW" yep, 5:30. Now last year they were from 4-5 or 4:30-5:30 or something like that and they were in the gym at the intermediate school. Well, we decided that since the football players practiced outside, so should we so now we get to practice near where the rocket footballers practice.

So, we show up today at 5:30. Coordinator coach wasn't there and the other two coaches were just standing around letting the girls do nothing (one of the moms made a comment under her breath about how organized they were, and my response of "oh we did this last year and it doesn't get any better" really didn't help matters I suppose I should learn to just keep my mouth shut). GRRRR (keep telling yourself, it's only $50, it's only $ get what you pay for after all!). Coordinator arrives (about 10 minutes late) to a throng of mothers standing on the sidewalk and tries to dismiss us. Oh it's ok, you can leave, they're fine. Um, I don't think so! They opened cheer up to 1st & 2nd graders this year and I could just see the mother's of the younger ones processing this statement in their she thinks I'm going to leave my child HERE alone! ROFL

Only one of the 3rd graders from last year came back to cheer this year and for some reason she wasn't there tonight. They split the teams into 3rd & 4th (well I guess now 1st-4th) and 5th & 6th. This means that NONE of the girls Princess cheered with last year are on her team this year. They did let her cheer with the older girls tonight since she knows all the cheers. The older girls ran through 4 of the really simple cheers and then broke up into small groups to help the new girls learn them too. I can't tell you how happy all of us were when 6:30 rolled around!

Tomorrow I have only one class, and it's just an orientation for my online class. It doesn't meet 'til 3 so I think Princess and I are heading out to paint some pottery and maybe order a great big pizza. (anything but a Happy Meal, anything but a Happy Meal, anything but a Happy Meal). You have to think positive!

Friday, August 24, 2007

And so it goes

Well, we hit the new school today and Princess got to see her classroom and got school pictures taken. That was about it because all the rooms were locked up and I had to cajole the secretary to at least show her the classroom so she would know where to go on her first day. She does have one friend (from cheerleading) that is in her grade, but we found out they won't be in with the same teacher. They were both disappointed, but honestly I think it will be for the best. This way princess will get to know all the other girls too and not just cling to the one.

What a shock going from the charter school system to a public school. She hardly needs any supplies. I might be going through shopping withdrawl! She still has a great set of Twistable crayons that are still good from last year, so she'll need new markers and only ONE spiral notebook and a couple of folders. That's it! Of course we ordered her pencils with her name on them, so at least she'll have some pretty pencils.

After pictures we headed out to Penney's to get a few more school clothes. I think she's all set, got two cute pairs of pants and an adorable denim skort. And of course we had to hit Build-a-Bear to get the mini armoire for the stupid happy meal build-a-bears. Just what we needed.

I am SO not ready for my school to start on Monday. I haven't even figured out what classes need 3-hole notebooks and which ones just need spirals. I should really get on that!

Now, being the good mommy that I am, I took my daughter to Michigan Adventure on Wednesday. And what a perfect day for it! There were storms in the morning and more forecast for later in the day. It's only a 45 minute drive so I figured we'd take our chances. We got there about 11:30 and the weather was gorgeous. Hardly anybody there. Spent a couple hours riding rides and then hit the water park 'til about 5. (and oops I got a little burnt!) We changed back into dry clothes, had some dinner and rode all the rides again. It's a small park, but well worth it. Three decent roller coasters, and it turns out my baby is a thrill seeker! I knew from her experience at Disney that she'd at least try them all. She liked them all and we rode her favorite one FOUR times. (I'm too old!) I convinced her a little after 7 that mommy was just too old for all this excitement and she agreed it was time to leave. I don't think we made it a mile from the park when we were scared to death by THE loudest thunder you have ever heard and then the downpour came. Talk about perfect timing :-)

Thursday we took the chairs from the dining room table and a bunch of sheets and made the coolest tent. Because, you know, High School Musical 2 was on Disney Channel again Thursday night. We spent most of the day just hanging out around the house. I made her pick up all the stuff in her room (which she accomplished by stomping around as hard as she could to make sure I could sense her displeasure). And seriously, she's only NINE!

I'm wondering if it will ever end!

and just so we're clear, that was rhetorical question because I do NOT need to hear the depressing answer!!

OK, ya know what, since I'm thinking about it, maybe I'll just go and get my backpack organized for Monday. And maybe on the way I'll find an excuse to go into the cupboard and notice the poor lonely hershey candy bar that's in there just waiting to be eaten!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Back to school...sort of

Start of school is just around the corner. You may think this is a good thing. Sadly, I have to go back to school before Princess does - and I can't say I'm too excited about it. I am, however THRILLED that princess is going back to school.

What the HECK did my parents do to entertain us all summer? OY! Since I'm heading back to school next Monday and the weather has been sort of dreary (translated it has been raining and overcast since Friday....although about 2 this afternoon the sun did start to shine a little) we planned a few indoor things to do this week to end summer with a bang.

Yesterday we went to the Air Zoo. It's about an hour from our house, and I was pleasantly surprised with our experience. It consisted of 2 buildings. The main building was a big hanger, with several old planes (including an SR-71) on display. Guided tours were offered (by what appeared to be WWII veterans, LOL) and those who took them seemed to be taking in all the tidbits of information being offered to them. There were even fighter flight simulators available, but Princess wanted none of that (which surprised me because after our Disney experience she seems to be a complete thrill seeker, no fear!). The second building had a mix of a museum feel, some more old planes, and displays with old uniforms and guns, etc.... and some cool hands on stuff. There was a spot where you could try to remotely steer a "mars rover". You were behind a wall and could only see what the rover could see. There was even a place that you could strap yourself in and with the help of a big old piece of machinery, feel like you were jumping on the moon. Princess tried it and thought it was just about the coolest thing ever! I truly thought she would be bored out of her mind, but she really had a great time. There was a 3-D movie about the last flight of a B-17 during WWII, it was short and I thought it was OK - but her majesty did not like it at all. And believe me, I had to hear all about it! Thankfully that was the only thing that didn't meet with her liking :-)

On the way home we stopped by Grandma's to show her the solar system model/mobile kit we had bought at the gift shop. I told mom since today was supposed to be another crappy day and considering I started school next week, I thought I better take Princess out and buy her a few nice new school clothes. She thought it was a great idea and offered to come along and foot the bill. Yeah Grandma! Princess got 1 pair of pants (she is SO picky! and the poor kid has wide hips like me so it is IMPOSSIBLE to find clothes that fit her) and 4 or 5 shirts and 2 pairs of shoes. I just love it when Grandma pays and we don't have to look at the price tag. I mean, she picked out a pair of black boots that were $45 and my mother let her have them! Is she crazy??

OK, have I mentioned Princess is starting a new school this year? Registration isn't until Friday (and did I mention I start school on Monday?), so I tried to call the school to find out what sort of supplies I needed to buy. I loved the charter school but, seriously, we had to buy a TON of supplies. I have no problem with this, but I don't want to go and buy our usual just to find out that she only needs half of it. So, I call the school and get a mesage that says "we're closed for the summer and will re-open on Tueday August 21". Since we were heading out shopping today I called the school this morning...and got the SAME message. Tried again after lunch, SAME message. Well, maybe they are setting up in the gym for registration and nobody is by the phone. So, we drove over there, just to check. Nope, all locked up. Now, I love princess, but sometimes that child gets on my nerves! We get back in the van and she looks at me and says, "so, what, I'm just going to show up on the first day of school without any supplies". Honestly, I wanted to reach over and smack her!

Through gritted teeth I explained to her that we would get a list at registration, as we had previously discussed and we would go for supplies next Tuesday since I don't have classes on Tuesdays or Thursdays. Like she is so deprived and so mistreated that we would send her back to school with no supplies. GRRR, she is NOT long for this world, I'm tellin' ya!

Some days motherhood is just not my thing, ya know?

Monday, August 20, 2007

I love crayons

Patrick is always one to find a fun test, so here we go

You Are a Red Crayon

Your world is colored with bright, vivid, wild colors.

You have a deep, complex personality - and you are always expressing something about yourself.

Bold and dominant, you are a natural leader. You have an energy that is intense... and sometimes overwhelming.

Your reaction to everything tends to be strong. You are the master of love-hate relationships.

Your color wheel opposite is green. Green people are way too mellow to understand what drives your energy.

I can't say I agree with them, although I do tend to have strong reactions. Not a whole lot of grey in my life, it's either black or white in most cases. And green does tend to make my skin crawl! LOL

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Things I remember...

...that Princess does not

*Record Players (followed closely by 8-tracks and cassettes)
*Happy Meals with cookies
*Movies for 3 bucks
*Bike riding with no helmet
*Our first microwave
*Our first VCR (can you say Betamax?)
*Phones with a dial....and a cord
*The first graphing calculator
*ze plane, ze plane!
*The Electric Company (as in on PBS!)
*Ice out of the freezer, not out of the door
*News on TV...that actually included news
*clothes for little girls that included lace and bows and did not show any skin from the neck to the knee
*chosing between leaded and unleaded at the pump
*pulling the license plate down to put the gas in
*slicing and shredding my own cheese
*use the force Luke
*the cold war
*roller SKATES (don't forget skiis and surf boards, NOT snow boards!)
*our first disposable camera
*checking out at the grocery store, with a clerk punching in the price from the price tag
*the invasion of the hacky sack
*Doo Dads
*rabbit ears and tin foil
*Ruffles Works Chips
*13 cent stamps
*Our first computer
*no call waiting
*malibu barbie
*it ain't easy being green
*i'll spare you the details of the advances in the feminine hygeine area
*Making popcorn on the stove
*(heck she found a floppy disc the other day and asked me what it was!)
*needing a can opener to open cans
*pet rocks
*oh and how about those klakker things and lets not forget
....the first time around for troll dolls, care bears, rubiks cube and teenage mutant ninja turtles
*The magic kingdom without Epcot and MGM and Animal Kingdom
*coffee, nothing fancy just straight or decaf? cream or sugar?
*people smoking EVERYWHERE (EW!!!!)

*Danger Will Robinson
*New Coke

Sunday, August 12, 2007

I love her...but...

Oh my word! Did you ever just have one of those days? We came downstairs this morning to discover this high pitched whining noise in our living room. Let's see, we woke up at 9 and it's now after 6 (thankfully we were gone at Grandma's for a couple hours and princess has been outside playing for the last few hours while i tackled laundry) BUT we JUST figured out what it was!

It just kept whining. It sounded like a smoke detector or something that had a bad battery, so I thought perhaps it was something electrical gone awry. But, the catch was you could only hear it in the living room. Once you went a couple steps into any other room you couldn't hear it at all. Since the unit for the a/c is outside the living room window I thought maybe that might be it. Went outside, but couldn't hear it out there at all. Came back in and turned the a/c off just to double check. Still this annoying noise! Hmm, maybe it's the TV or DVD player or who knows what. Turned them ALL off, including the surge protectors just in case. STILL there! OY!

As luck would have it, I made princess clean off a mess of stuff she had left on the coffee table and in her keeper. She has THE cutest little pink carrying box that we keep in the living room for her to stash stuff in. You know how kids are, they want to play with stuff non-stop for several days. So, stuff comes down from her room and stays in her keeper box until it has run it's course and then gets put back up in the closet.

Anywho...I made her clean that out too AND there it was. An old Tamagotchi that still had a battery in it. I thought it was dead. When I dropped it in her box a few weeks ago, the screen was dead and silly me, I thought it was just, well, dead. It seems it was NOT. Oh my word. My ears feel so much better now!

As for Princess she is currently home for the 2nd weekend in a row. Come to find out (after much prodding) that last time she went camping with idiot and his even stupider (is that even a word?) wife, she had a tummy ache at bedtime (which happens FREQUENTLY with her irritable bowel this is nothing new - I just don't think it's ever bad enough that she says anything when she's with them). So her dad stepped up and layed with her 'til she fell asleep but of course the next morning this evil, evil woman that he is married to told her that she knew Princess was just doing it to get attention from her dad and it better not happen again. OY! If I thought it would do any good I'd have it out with idiot again, but honestly he just lies and says he'll talk to her about it and then he never does.

Of course Princess will be home next weekend too. And anybody out there who has a tween girl knows why. The much awaited High School Musical 2 comes on Friday night, and you KNOW we'll be parked in front of the TV with our popcorn and goobers!

We still have 2 more weeks before I go back to school and 3 more weeks before Princess goes back. She's almost getting excited about her new school. I think it helps that I told her I would try my hardest to get a job on this side of town so she could just keep going to the same school with the same friends until she graduates. 'Course by then maybe I'll be able to convince her to move across country...a girl can only dream :-)

Saturday, August 04, 2007


It was a big day at our house. Princess stayed home for the weekend and since she has been begging me for a sleepover I told her I'd think about it if we spent this weekend getting the house ready for company. Now, understand when I say ready for company means pretty much digging out every room in the house. I'm a pack rat. I make piles and since it's just the two of us the piles seem to appear everywhere. I mean, really, we only need two chairs at the dining room table and we only need PART of the table to eat....well, you get the picture. I figured we'd start with the basics before we moved on to digging through the piles and creating what looks to be bags and bags of trash. I had an epiphany last weekend and decided that I really do NOT need to hold on to all the things I think I need to hold on to.

I should mention here that Princess will be 10 in October, it's hard to believe she is so old already. Whenever we clean (which really isn't that often, shame on me!) she always asks if she can help with the mopping. Now, I came to two conclusions today. She's old enough to give it a shot and if it's not perfect, oh well, it's probably close enough. So, I let her handle mopping the kitchen floor. She moved everything out and set to mopping. When she was done with the initial mopping she said there were still some spots on the floor she couldn't get up with the mop so I gave her a little brush and a sponge and showed her how to do that. Then she came out and said she needed something to put her knees on because they were getting sore (LOL). I grabbed some rags and handed those over. Pretty soon she comes back out and tells me that she feels like Cinderella in that scene where she is scrubbing the floor on her hands and knees. I just had to laugh!

She did a good job. There were some spots I told her to get (like under the little cupboard overhang where you really can't get a mop under) that she didn't end up getting, but I made a big deal and gave her a big high five for working so hard. I know the next few times she does it, things will just be better and better. After all, it's just a learning curve, right?

While she was doing that I set to vaccuuming. Used the attachments and everything, vaccuumed under the heavy stuff that you hardly ever move. Used carpet fresh so it smells really good in here now. There's still a ton left to do, but heck we have all weekend.

About half an hour ago she called grandma and told her she was tired of spending all day with me and could grandma PLEASE come pick her up. I told her I'd be over in an hour, but figure if I take my time I can stretch that a little bit and nobody will know the difference.

Princess has been bugging me to take her to see Hairspray. AGAIN. She absolutely loved this movie. The old one (from the 80s with Ricki Lake) was on ABC family the other night and she watched the whole thing and every scene went something like "he's not as cute as the one in the movie we saw" "that's not what happened in the version we saw" "the girl we saw sang so much better". Just call her my own little movie critic.

Yesterday dad & I went to see the latest Bourne. I am not sure how so many people got out of work eary on a Friday afternoon. We caught the 3:00 showing and it was packed! (not every seat in the house packed, but given the time of day I was amazed at how many people were there). With one little plot exception that I am still mulling over, I LOVED the movie. Oh, and let's not forget the shaky camera work that gave me a headache. Maybe it was old age, but geesh, I understand he's on the run, does the camera have to bob up and down too? Could we leave it in focus for more than 5 minutes at a time? OK, enough complaining. If you're a Bourne fan, you will not be disappointed. I think this was the best of them all. You'll laugh, you'll be on the edge of your seat, you'll be yelling at the screen "you really SHOULD have listened to Jason because now that you didn't I won't feel bad when you end up dead!" At the end you will be on your feet cheering....sort of. And that's all I have to say on the matter. Go see this movie!

I guess I should go brush my hair and make myself presentable. The only place we've been today was the McDonald's drive through (and only because they have build-a-bears in the happy meals). I can't tell you the last time I let her eat at McDonald's (blecht). But, when you go through the drive through you really don't have to do your hair (or honestly wear pants, but I'm sort of a fan of wearing pants out in public). If I play my cards right I figure I can have dinner at Grandma's so I won't even have to cook today!

Friday, August 03, 2007

It was my 5th

and it was so many years ago. A dear friend reminded me of a post I did a long time ago, and well my apologies to all of you who have already read it a million times, but it's the mood I'm in today, so here it is - posted in it's entirety

Saturday, November 13, 2004

I'm feeling my age today. Okay, so 37 isn't that old, but after a day of chasing 7 year olds I feel like I just want to close my eyes and let Calgon take me away. My Princess slept over at her best friends house last night. I got the call about 9:30 this morning.... "mom, we want to go roller blading today". So after talking to Moho's (mind of her own's) mom, it was decided that I would pick the girls up at noon, take them to lunch, then to skating and return Moho about 4:15 after skating was done. What was I thinking?! Now my princess and her best friend get along for one very important reason - none of their other friends have the patience to put up with either one of them. Not to say they don't have other friends. Suprisingly they are both quite popular, it's just their other little girlfriends seem to get bossed around a lot.

Mine suffers from "only child syndrome". Moho suffers from "middle child syndrome". They are equally matched in a battle of the wills, and depending on the day one or the other of them is bound to break out in bouts of crying over not getting her own way. Today it was my princess that was the emotional wreck, and by the time we made it safely back to our house, she collapsed on the couch, snuggled up with her bear and asked for a movie. I put in Cinderella Story (which after 1/2 hour she insisted she didn't want to watch any more and then launched into a new tantrum when i told her it was too late to change her mind.... >sigh<).

So, I am tired not only from the rollerblading (3 hours UGH) but from working overtime in the mom department. Thankfully all princess wanted for dinner was a grilled cheese. I headed to the kitchen to get her highness food. This was where the rest of my night went awry.
The bread in my kitchen is next to the toaster. On the side of the toaster is a piece of construction paper, with the word toaster written in marker. I made that sign at least 5 years ago, when my son was in preschool and learning to read. We made signs for everything, microwave, light, bookshelf, stove.... Since he died the signs have come down. Princess has been reading for a while, so there is no need for them. No need for them, except this one: toaster. It's on the side of the toaster and usually facing the wall. Out of sight out of mind. Grief has a way of catching you sideways when you least expect it. How or why the toaster was sitting the other way on my shelf tonight I don't know. But I went to grab bread to make a grilled cheese and there was that piece of paper. Toaster. Briefly my mind went back to his little fingers touching and retouching letters and - I caught my breath and squeezed the tears out of my eyes and went back to cooking dinner.

But now princess is sound asleep, and I have time for me. Time to cry over the stupid toaster. Time to wish that instead of dealing with a stubborn spoiled only child that I was dealing with sibling rivalry and "mom he's touching me" and "mom she won't stay out of my room". How I grieve for the son I will never know. The nine year old who I'm sure would be too sensitive and too smart for his own good. I look around me and feel so blessed for all that I have. Yet nothing will ever patch this one empty hole in my life. And I would never want it to be patched, for this awful feeling, this feeling that takes my breath away from me, it is all that I have left of him...

Monday, July 30, 2007

an Essay

It's absurd, really, that I should count this as my favorite possession. My gut tells me that with all I've been through it should be something of Joshua's that is my most inspiring possession. Perhaps his blanky or his favorite pillow should be counted as my favorite? I do cherish them. They are as much a part of me as anything in this house. And I suppose if the house were to catch fire I would rescue them before I rescued my favorite thing. The one that tugs at my heart and reminds me of so many things.

Absurd! The word just rings with the contradiction of it all. That I should truly count this as my favorite is absurd. For this little piece of my past came from an amusement park (Cedar Point). Of all places! We went as a church group and I brought along my best friend from high school. I have a picture of us. You know the type, the black and white ones where you dress up as saloon girls and turn over half the money in your purse. We had fun. I don't think I remember a day where I laughed so much.

I'm always amazed that it is still in one piece. It is so small and fragile. We moved a lot when I was young and once I moved out.....well I was not known for staying in one place (I can blame the Air Force for some of that, thank you!). Everytime I moved I just KNEW that would be the time, the move that finally broke it. The time that it would end up losing a wing or a leg. But it never did.

Now it sits in a place of honor in the china cabinet. On the shelf amongst Grace's Precious Moment and the clay bird's nest she made in 1st grade. Sadly it is collecting dust. Just because they are treasured possessions does NOT mean I keep them any cleaner than the rest of my house. When you dig under all the dust, though, this one sparkles. Or maybe just in my eyes because it nudges me and reminds me that life is...

Well, life is only what it is. Nothing lasts forever. I will not be the same person tomorrow as I was yesterday. But the person that I was yesterday (and 25 years ago) will always be a part of who I am now. That person who thought she knew it all, who had a lifetime ahead of her is still hidden somewhere. That's sort of a big message for such a little thing. Maybe that's why it inspires me.
It does double duty. Odd as it seems, a Pegasus was also our school mascot. (Hey! It was a college prep high school, so it's not like we had SPORTS teams - LOL). This way it reminds me of my past in a tangible way. And then it touches my heart in a way that nobody else ever knows.
(Wanting to be true to all of you I snapped the picture dust and all. Just so you could peek inside my messy life.)
I am so excited that Judith has brought back the Artsy Essay. You may play along by clicking HERE. If you don't want to write about it, you should STILL CLICK HERE and follow the links to read what the other entrants have written about. Because I can guarantee you that they are vastly superior to mine!