Tuesday, February 28, 2006
Sigh. Martha Stewart has nothin' on me.
You are a Rose:You are creative, sensual, passionate, and bold. You pour your heart into everything that you do. Alluring and gifted with strong sex appeal, you very easily draw people in with your animal magnetism.Symbolsim: The rose has always been a flower heavily loaded with symbolism. In general it symbolizes desire, passion, beauty, and enchantment.
Yup. I'm loaded with animal magnestism. Especially today. Sitting here with my hair only partly pulled up while the rest hangs in my face (not in the sexy, Victoria's Secret way...more like Edward Scissorhands), no makeup and wearing my ratty, fuzzy blue slippers. Not only that, I smell like puke, because Baby has a stomach virus.
That's me. I'm a rose.
Friday, February 24, 2006
Hubby got in last night around 9:30, I think. I was staring blankly at the computer screen about to pass out from exhaustion. Just as he walked in the door, I heard Baby cry. The last thing I remember was laying down next to her. Then I woke up in my bed, fully clothed, sandwiched between Hubby and Baby. I looked at the clock. 1:12 a.m. Baby is still attached and wriggling around. She has a yucky cough, a stuffed up nose and tooting like a freight train. I sit up and try to decide if I should give her the cold medicine or the gas medicine. I can't give them simultaneously. I decide the cold medicine will probably make her drowsy, so I get up and take her to the bathroom to administer it. Two hours later, she finally goes back to sleep.
I wake up to the sounds of Brother and Sister arguing in the living room. Baby hears it and is instantly fully awake and ready to play. I'm trying to peel my eyelids open as she climbs onto my head and straddles it. She bounces up and down, riding my head like a pony at the fair, giggling and screeching with delight. I groan. I don't want to get up. But the fact is, even though she is being such a rotten little stinker, she is so adorable I can't resist her. I grab a chubby little leg and nibble it and make a wish that she would never get a day older. My cute-o-meter completely maxed out, I remember that the gas man is coming to light the pilot light on my oven. Luckily, I am already dressed, so once I drag myself out of bed and have coffee, we can get the show on the road.
I am staggering down the hall, my head in a fog. The living room is like a field of land mines, with toys and books strewn about. I am an expert at dodging them. I can do it in my sleep. Which is good, because I am not quite awake. I feel like Dracula, eyes squinted, arms raised, trying to block out the light that seems to be burning a hole in my brain. Coffee. Must have coffee. It is the life's blood that flows through my veins. Brother takes a break from fighting with Sister to tell me how hungry he is. I grunt something about patience as I fumble for the coffee maker. I start to break out the cereal...again...when I have a pang of guilt and decide to make french toast. I bark orders for the kids to pick up the land mine so we don't kill the gas man, and I attempt to make breakfast in my stupor. The coffee beeps. Actually, the coffee maker beeps and I get butterflies, knowing I am about to have my fix. It's hot. It's creamy. It's soothing. I feel it down to my toes. It's...well, you get the picture. I kind of like coffee. So, I'm coming alive and the smell of cinnamon toasting on the bread is wafting through the house. I am glad because it will mask the smell of filth when the gas man arrives. Brother comes into the kitchen and says, "Mom, can we have french toast for breakfast?" I stop and look at him, slightly pleased that I have pulled this one off. I actually made what he wanted! Before he asked!! I said, "Yes, you can." He grinned. "How did I know that's what you wanted?" I ask. He said, "Well, I thought I smelled poop or something, but it was French Toast."
I go over my mental to-do list for today.
- Clean behind the stove.
- Shower. I'm starting to smell.
- Bathe the kids. They smell, too.
- Figure out what to make for dinner and go get it.
- Visit with a friend who is coming over.
I have to do all of this by 4:30 or 5:00, because tonight I am meeting friends...without children...for dinner and a movie. And I see an email from Hubby containing an errand I need to do for him. It is more than I can get done, so I'm trying to prioritize. There is God knows what living behind my stove, since it has sat in the same place for seven years without being moved, so I feel the need to clean before the gas man comes. I'd like to push back the visit with a friend to another day, but I haven't seen her in about 9 months, and we've been trying to get together for about 2 months. I don't feel like I can do that to her. A shower is pretty important, too, but maybe I can use a baby wipe to wash off a bit and make due. No, I want to look and smell like a girl tonight. I want to do makeup, hair, the whole shabang. The kids haven't bathed in about four days, and I can't leave it to Hubby tonight because he will have a friends' two kids along with our three so she and I can go hang with the girls. It's all important!!!
I call Hubby and he is short with me about calling him at work. So we fight by text messaging while the kids eat breakfast. I barely get everyone dressed when the gas man arrives. So much for cleaning behind the stove. Luckily, he doesn't even pull it out. Not so lucky, we need a new part for the stove. Gas man leaves. I text Hubby. "Handle it." is his reply. Add that to my list. I do a short school lesson with the kids, call around to find the part for the stove and we pile in the car to run errands, smelly and all. We are in Wal-Mart when a sweet, little grandpa begins to talk to Baby and tell her how pretty she is. She just stares at him and he laughs. "She's awful quiet," he says. "Not like my granddaughter." "Oh, she's not like this at home," I assure him. He waves bye-bye to her, which is met with a cold, dead stare. I start off down the aisle again when I realize Sister is not with me. I call her name. No answer. I check the nearby aisles. I can't find her. I'm starting to run, frantically searching for that long, blonde ponytail and red shirt. Finally, I see her, sitting on the floor looking at a Barbie computer game. She looks up at me with those enormous baby blues, "Mom, can we get this?" I grab her little arm and give her a swift swat on the tushie. "DON'T EVER WALK AWAY FROM ME LIKE THAT AGAIN!" I don't even care if people are looking at me. She looks confused and then starts to cry. I scoop her up and squeeze her tight, shaking. I can't even let my mind begin to think about what could have happened. "You scared me, " she says, sobbing. "You scared me, too" I say, not wanting to let her go.
I was going to try and pick up the stove part, but it is lunchtime by the time we leave Wal-Mart. Baby has fallen asleep in the 8 minutes it takes us to get home, so I try to wake her up when I get her out of the car. She won't do it. Now, if I tried to lay her down, she would be wide awake. We get the bags in and I set her down on the floor. She starts wailing, but the clock is ticking, so I leave her. I am expecting my friend around 1:30. I need to feed everyone, put them down for naps and sneak in a shower in about an hour and a half. I put the girls in the bathtub while I make lunch. Hubby calls and we make up. He says he will pick up the part for the stove on his way home. The girls get clean, everyone gets fed and they all lay down. I hit the shower. I get to use the yummy smelling shower gel Hubby got me for Valentine's Day. And I don't hurry. No one is standing outside the door yelling. No little fingers are poking in under the door. Afterwards I use more yummy smelling stuff from Hubby and I feel like a new person. A real person.
The sun is shining, the wind is blowing, as if God is whispering to me "Spring is coming!" The house is quiet. I am clean. I smell good. Tonight I get to take off my Mommy hat and go be me with the girls. We will cluck and cackle like hens and eat queso at Senor Tequila's. I am excited. I deserve it.
I've never been drunk in my life. But after today, maybe now is a good time to start.
Thursday, February 23, 2006
Oh well. Guess I'll just wait and follow my nose...
Wednesday, February 22, 2006
Okay, okay. Of course, I wouldn't take anything for my one and only boy. Although if you had asked me earlier today, I might have given it some thought. He is so whiny and downright crotchety!!! It's driving me up the wall. If he complains this much at six, what is it going to be like when he's sixteen?
Monday, February 20, 2006
It's a good thing I didn't have any "surprise" company drop by today. Not only would I have been extremely embarrassed, but they would have had to sit on the floor.
I started my day ready to put Brother on the first school bus outta here. We reviewed a new phonetical sound that we learned on Friday. Friday he had it down. Friday he zoomed through all the reading words with that sound like greased lightning. Friday he was a genius, a boy wonder. Today...not so much. We began with spelling words, reviewing the "ng" sound. First word, "win". Second word, "wing". Third word, "thin". Fourth word, "thing". Notice a pattern? Unfortunately, he didn't. And for some reason it was driving me CRAZY. Of course, it might have had something to do with cranky Baby and restless Sister clammoring for me attention, too. It took us half an hour to do eight words, but I managed to keep from throwing the teacher's guide across the room. Next we went over some reading words with sounds he already knew. The last row of words went like this: "funny, sneaky, baby, tricky". He read the first three fairly quickly. But he got hung up on "tricky". He kept saying "trickick". Trickick?! I tried to help. In a very soft, soothing voice, through clenched teeth, I said, "If this says funn-y, sneak-y, bab-y, what does this say?" His reply? "Trickick." He got the "trick" part, but couldn't make the connection at the end. He was squirming and trying to change the subject. He was sooooooo not interested. I wanted to scream. I wanted to jump up and down. I wanted to throw things. I wanted to tear my clothes and rip my hair out by the roots. Okay...well, maybe not the hair. I pay good money to make it look like my daughter gets the blonde hair from me. (Just for the record, she does.) I was so incredibly frustrated I couldn't see straight. I wanted to just put the books away and put on a video for them. It was all I could do to muster up the little bit of patience I had to help him through it. It took an hour and a half to do a lesson he usually does in thirty minutes. But once we did it, I was so glad it was me there to help him. It was one of those moments that would have been completely different for him in a classroom. It could have been a day he would have come home from school defeated and hating it. Instead, I got to see him through to success and then we moved on to fun things. We made a volcano. I taught him to play Uno. We played a math game.
My house is a disaster. But man, what a great day.
Saturday, February 18, 2006
Although I may disagree with some of your comments, much of what you share is right on target. As a corporation that has been blessed to be in business for over 25 years, we have always been sensitive to the "great commission" even while our particular focus is on the Church - the visible body of believers. You will find that within the pages of The Shepherd's Guide there are clear evangelical messages - for salvation, growth in your walk with the Lord, inspiration, encouragement, etc. We regularly include the Billy Graham "steps to salvation"; confident that many readers have not yet received Christ. Many non-Christians use the Shepherd's guide as a resource because of the perceived "trust factor" (their words, not mine). This is where the Shepherd's Guide and its family of thousands of advertisers are at their "evangelical" best - serving as stewards of God-owned businesses, testifying of the "hope that is within" by doing business His way, making a difference, not so much by what we say but what we do! With that said, I want it to be perfectly clear our primary focus on believers is intentional and biblically mandated: "Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do well to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith." (Galatians 6:10)
I also want to assure you that we don't believe that Christians are more trustworthy; however, we believe they should be - we are "new creations"!!
Thanks again for your comments and for your heart for the lost.
Together for Him,
I went back to the website to copy some of what I read upon first discovering it. However, it has been changed. Either that, or I am hallucinating. The first time I read their home page, it was a much longer shpeal and it didn't include the soft focus image of a shepherd. Anyone else know what I'm talking about? One of the statements that stuck out in my mind, though I can't remember it word for word, was something like you would know the people were trustworthy because they were Christians and you'd know they were Christians because they had to sign a statement of faith before they were allowed to advertise. However, try as I might, I could not find it on there today. I don't know what that means.
I thought about just letting this issue die. I was feeling kind of bored with it. But I feel the need to further explain myself. I still don't understand the need for this directory. Is one plumber's crack more righteous than another? (No offense to plumbers) If I wanted a Christian doctor or counselor, couldn't I find one easily enough, being a Christian? Wouldn't word of mouth be enough? Personally, I wouldn't seek out a counselor or doctor just because they were a Christian. If they are any good, they are going to take my beliefs into account. Seriously, would a non-Christian marriage counselor tell me to divorce my husband or do something immoral to save the marriage? And if they did, shouldn't I know the difference? Do I need a couselor to pray for me? Do I need an intercedant? And as far as the praying doctor goes, will God say "Sorry, I can't answer your prayer to heal. But if your doctor asks for it, I'll do it. His carries more weight"?
And do these people really believe that someone who is not a Christian is going to pick up this directory, read the "steps to salvation" and suddenly convert? And if they aren't a Christian, but "trust" Christians more, why aren't they a Christian in the first place? I can't believe they actually perceive that as outreach. This is their "evangelical best"?
I know just as many immoral Christians as non-Christians. Just because they say they follow Christ doesn't mean they do. Signing a piece of paper doesn't make it so. This directory is someone's idea to make money by marketing to Christians. It's no different than a Jesus-scented candle. I think saying, "Come do business with me because I'm a Christian" is repulsive. It's the opposite of what we should be doing. It is one step further to living in the bubble.
Wednesday, February 15, 2006
During my leisurely stroll down each and every aisle, I feel my cell phone vibrate in my pocket. I check to see who it is. Sam. My brother. He's already left me three voice mails today, but I haven't had a chance to call him back. I answer.
"Wow! You finally answered!" he says. His reaction when I don't answer every single time he calls, which can be half a dozen times in one day. "Where are you?"
"I'm in Wal-Mart."
"Where's the kids?"
"They're at home with their dad."
"Oh, he's home? He's not answering his phone."
"Well, he's probably got the ringer off. What's going on?" I reply, trying to hide the irritation in my voice and sound cheery and friendly-like.
"Well, I think I should come up tomorrow. It looks like Friday is going to be bad."
Allow me to fill you in on the conversation I had with him last night. He calls me yesterday afternoon, Valentine's Day, and wants to come over. He said he had a roommate who was drinking and smoking in the room and he can't take it. He said he was waiting on his next unemployment check so he could get his own room. "It's Valentine's Day," I said. "Oh, do you and Todd have plans?" he asks. I told him we did, even though it consisted of staying home. "Well, I could come over and watch the kids for you" was his suggestion. My brother won't even have a pet because he doesn't want the responsibility. I'm going to leave my three children in his care? Yeah, right. I was able to explain to him that it wasn't a good time and offered for him to come over Friday.
Now, tonight, I'm standing in Wal-Mart, having my glorious solo shopping night interrupted, listening to him try to manipulate me.
"Bad? What do you mean bad?" I ask.
"Well, the weather. It's going to get bad Friday."
"Well, I have plans," I say. It's no lie. I really do.
"Oh," comes the disheartened answer. "I just thought it would be better with the weather and all. I don't know if I can make it Friday."
Fortunately, the connection started breaking up and I had to cut it short. "Let me call you back when I get home," I say. About 30 seconds later, my hip vibrates again. It's my husband.
"You need to call your brother," he says in a very annoyed tone.
"Yes, I already talked to him."
"What's he want?"
"He wants to come up tomorrow."
"What?! No. Absolutely not. You need to tell him no. Did you tell him to call and ask me?"
"No! I told him I'd call him back when I got home. He was breaking up. Why are you avoiding him?" Sam loves my husband. Probably as much or more than he loves me. My husband has always been very kind to him, and treats him like a real person. That's not something he gets every day. But lately, he's been avoiding his calls, just because he calls all the time. I'm feeling trapped between the two of them. My brother is needy and looks to us to fill a need. My husband is annoyed with that and is trying to put some distance between them. I am afraid to get angry with Sam, who is emotionally fragile, so I vent on my husband, who I know will not flake out on me.
Allow me to flash back again, about two years ago. Sam gets arrested and put in jail. Honestly, it's happened so many times, I can't remember the particular charge. My parents have bailed him out time and again. On this occasion, they did not. He was there for three weeks. During this time he called me collect from jail at least twice a day, asking me to forward messages to my parents and just to cry. He told me how sorry he was, how it wouldn't happen again. How if he could just get out of there he'd turn his life around. After about a week of this, the calls began to take a serious manipulative dive. He told me he couldn't take it anymore. If he didn't get out he was just going to end it. He told me no matter what happened, to remember that he loved me. And he hung up, leaving me screaming and crying hysterically into the phone. I called my mom in a panic, barely able to speak. I've always had this fear in the back of my mind that he would kill himself. I could see it playing out with a very tragic ending. But he didn't do it. And it seemed everyone but me knew he wouldn't. My husband was irate, to say the least, that he played me like that, and refused any collect phone calls from him from that point on.
So, I'm standing in the checkout line at Wal-Mart. I know Sam has an ability to manipulate me, and I let him. I would love to forget he called and just avoid him rather than confront him honestly. I am afraid to be honest. I don't want to crush him. As I stand there, blankly staring at the People magazine cover, I see a scenerio where Sam is feeling desperate because my husband is avoiding him and I am refusing him and he kills himself. I blame myself, and then my husband for not taking his calls. I don't want to be in this position. I don't like feeling responsible for his emotional well-being. Should I? Why am I? I am either willing to let him suck me dry or I completely ignore him. I'm having a hard time finding that happy medium with Sam. And I'm not sure if happy medium is okay.
I call my husband when I get in the car. "You have to establish some boundaries with Sam," he says. I know he is right. I know it is my job, not his. I have to suck it up and do it, and not play into his game of emotional chess. I take a deep breath and dial Sam's number.
"Poo?" he answers. Yes, my nickname is Poo. There is a disgusting rhyme that my family attached to it, but I won't get into that.
"Can you hear me now?" I joke, trying to be like the cell phone commercial.
"Yeah," he laughs. "Hey, do I need to wait till Friday?"
"Yeah, Sam, you really do."
"Well, I know. I understand."
I am relieved.
"I don't think the weather is going to be that bad," I say. "It's going to be cold, and we might get some rain, but it should be fine."
"I'm so excited to see you guys. Are the babies okay?"
"Yeah, they're fine."
"I talked to Mom tonight. You know, Dad didn't get her anything for Valentine's Day."
"Really?" I say, not too surprised.
"Dad, you know, he's...well, he's not the dad he used to be, Poo. That doesn't mean I don't love him, though." His voice cracks a little. "It's not easy to love him, you know?"
"Yeah, I know," I say. "Sometimes it's not easy."
"I do love him. I don't tell him that, though. He doesn't like to hear it. Well, I'm excited to see you. What time on Friday?"
"How about 5:00? Come for dinner," I say, as I'm pulling into the driveway
"Ooooooo, what are we having?"
"I don't know. We'll think of something."
"I'll see you then. I love you, Poo."
"I love you, too, Sam," and I cut the engine.
Tuesday, February 14, 2006
Sunday, February 12, 2006
Thursday, February 09, 2006
A serving of Hershey's Kisses is 9 pieces. One serving has 13 grams of fat, 230 calories and 24 grams of carbs. One 13-ounce bag has roughly 9 servings in it...about 81 kisses. So if I eat half a bag, I have consumed 68.5 grams of fat, 1, 025 calories and 108 grams of carbs. I said IF. Fortunately I think I only ate about 1/4 of the bag, so I'm okay.
Tuesday, February 07, 2006
A little background about my Grandma Val. Once a possum found it's way into her trailer house. She caught it with her bare hands, took it outside, and, holding it by the tail, swung its' head against the sidewalk till it died. She had a leak in the roof, but no one around to fix it. So Grandma, well into her seventies, grabbed the ladder, climbed up on the roof, and fixed it herself...in August. You might imagine her as a big, burly woman. But she is a stick. She once told me not to hug her so hard because it hurt. Now Grandma has lung cancer and has been taking chemotherapy for a few months. My parents have been taking care of her and took her to her doctor's appointment yesterday. While they were in town, they called ahead and said they'd like to come over for a visit. Now, I'm not quite the housekeeper my mom was, and though she would never say a word about it, my dad has been known to make a few comments here and there. So I do try to make things a bit neater than normal when they come over. I'm over trying to make it all perfect, but I put in a smidge of extra effort to make them comfortable. I was barely out of the shower and dressed when I heard their knock on the door at 1:00, even though they were supposed to be here between 2:00 and 2:30. Grandma doesn't even bother to wait for me to open it before she blows right on in.
"Why isn't your door locked? You're supposed to keep your door locked! Too many crazy people in this world!"
"I know," I say as I lean over to hug her. "How are you?"
"I'm hungry!" She makes her way to the kitchen. "I haven't had a thing to eat today. They wouldn't even let me have coffee! I want a pancake!"
What happens next is a whirlwind of activity, so I'm a bit foggy on the details. Mom went straight to the kitchen and got the coffee pot going and starting asking where I kept the baking powder and flour and salt. I pointed her in the direction of the laundry room, where the pantry is, as Grandma exclaimed, "Good Lord, Donna (my mom)! I don't know how you're going to get to anything! Look at the dishes! That sink is full!" There were a few big items in the sink that wouldn't fit in the dishwasher, so I guess that made it look full. I winced as Mom made her way to the laundry room, knowing full well Grandma would have something to say about the state it was in. As soon as she opened the door, Grandma hit me with another one. "Good grief! How can you get any laundry done? Would you look at the stuff piled on that dryer!" Grandma takes off her coat and rolls up her sleeves. She runs dishwater in the sink while Mom mixes pancake batter quietly. The crockpot containing cheese dip from our SuperBowl party the day before really gets Grandma going. The two of them are zipping around my kitchen, washing, cleaning, cooking, clearing the table, all within about two minutes of their arrival. I look at Dad, mouth agape. He rolls his eyes and says with a grin, "Where's your vaccum?" But Grandma has no patience for idle hands. "Why are you just standing there, girl? That's why you can't get anything done!" Ouch. That one stung. I smiled and pretended to be listening to one of the kids. I decided to get out of the way before I got run over...again.
Grandma softened a bit after eating and having some coffee. But continued to hop up and down the entire time she was here, never really stopping to visit. I'm pretty sure she didn't realize she was speaking to Supermom. After all, most civilians see me as a mild-mannered housewife when I am not wearing the cape.
It's a good thing I cleaned the pee from the bathroom floor before they came. That might've sent Grandma over the edge and I wouldn't be standing here today.
Monday, February 06, 2006
Sunday, February 05, 2006
After a quick lunch at home, I put the kids to bed and sent hubby back to the store to pick up food for the SuperBowl gathering. I found my "zone" and began to clean. I also turned the fire down on my boiling pot. It was good to have that time alone with my thoughts and put things into perspective. People came. We ate. We had fun. And it wasn't such a bad day after all.
Friday, February 03, 2006
Laundry, O Laundry, Most Monotonous of Chores!
You lie strewn about blocking entries and doors.
Just when I think we are over and done
You creep right back in ruining all of my fun.
Laundry, O Laundry, will you ever be silent?
Your night and day beckoning is making me violent!
Among endless mountains of undies and dresses,
Your sad, soapy song demeans and depresses.
I have tried to escape you and leave you behind
But your vengeance is one that is more than unkind.
Ignoring you unleashes your anger tenfold!
(I mean that literally...ten times more to fold)
And to make matters worse, you then make me hated
when my entire family has to spend the day naked.
Alas, I cannot turn my back on your call.
I must always answer...always heed your footfall.
I am trapped under Carter's and Osh Kosh B'Gosh,
And I now bear the marks of bleach and Spray and Wash.
You have beaten me down. You have made me your slave.
We are diabolically joined till I go to my grave.
So Laundry, Vile Laundry, my days aren't my own.
I'll keep washing the clothes...reap the seeds I have sown.
But one day, perhaps I'll mark you off the to-do list,
When I have the last laugh and go live with the Nudists!!