Thursday, December 31, 2009

DANGIT DANGIT DANGIT!

I would use real curse words if it weren't for the blogs that list people's post titles. Rest assured I am thinking in big, bad, ugly curse words right now.

Fifteen years ago, give or take 2 years -I forget, I married the man I love for better or for worse. Sadly, the "worse" became quickly evident. The man I married, my baby Daddy, is an only child. He argues valiantly, and frequently, against the stereotype with his words. His upbringing was just like everyone elses. Exactly the same, only there was one of him. The fact that his parents let him select the radio station in the car was due to his parents being so exceptionally cool, not at all because he was the only one there, his parents were entirely focused only on him, and there was no one else to argue with about it, which are just a few of the opinions I had suggested. So, he insists that his life was never based in any way, on the fact that he was the only child in the house and every thing and everything anyone did, originated with the idea of caring for him, or making him happy in some way.

Not that I have any bitterness. Or envy. Whatever. Anyway.

So, one might imagine that living with someone brought up in such a way, would have advantages and disadvantages. I am not here to discuss the advantages, should I ever think of one. When it comes to disadvantages, if I were a different sort of blogger (the divorced kind for example), I could have a list but I don't. I do however, have one particular issue.

The man takes the last of everything. He does it with no regard for anyone else alive on the plant or in the same home. He will ague insistently that this is just me being picky. He ate the last of the chocolate ice cream when I was pregnant, people. Yes you read that correctly. Yes it was 5 years ago- so? Appalled aren't you? You should be. So you just take whichever side you think deserves your support and read on.

Here is the part that hurts. I have had to resort to hiding certain items of food that I might need later. Such as cookies. I can't hide ice cream, so I just gave up on buying that at all. But he will think nothing of masticating his way through an entire box of cookies while I sleep. Leaving me to find an empty shell in the recycling bin the next day. And cursing. Wildly.

So the other day I was in the store buying up a bunch of suck ass crap like cleaning supplies, bleach, laundry soap and other things that just mean more sucky work for me, and I bought some cookies. Really fancy cookies, that are pricey and only have like, 8, in the bag. Chocolate chunk brownie cookies. Mmmmmm.

AND I HID THEM FROM MY HUSBAND AND NOW I CANNOT FIND THEM!!!

I FORGOT WHERE I PUT THEM!!!

STOP LAUGHING THIS IS SERIOUS!!!

It is really bad, because I so clearly remember taking the action of hiding them in the first place. I deliberately removed them from the bag of cleaning crap and put them in our bedroom..... and that is where it all goes blank. BLANK!

AAAAAAAARRRRRRRGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHH!!!!

So, who has exciting plans for New Years Eve?
Ha ha, just kidding!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Happy 101


I really do love to get an award! It is so nice! This is from Mass Hole Mommy who lives right there, in the clicky part. Here is the deal......

Now for the fine print. The Happy 101 Blog Award Rules are as follows: List 10 things that make you happy, try to do at least one of them today, and tag 10 bloggers that brighten your day. For those 10 bloggers who get the award, you then link back to my blog and create your list of things that make you happy.

1. A new handbag
2. Vacations on a beach
3. Blogger awards!
4. Kittens
5. Knitting
6. Happy children
7. Starbucks
8. TV (I don't care if that makes me pedestrian. So what)
9. Lofthouse cookies
10. Anything that is self- cleaning

I like to pass on these awards to blogs I have newly discovered, or who have newly discovered me. Especially to new bloggers just getting going. Send a little traffic their way and leave a comment would you?
Here are the blogs I am sending this too:
This Work Stinks
Special K's Journey
Adopting Ahren
How Not to Write a Book
Land of the Loo- Loo's

By the way, do people know that there is a setting to go directly to your profile with your blog listing from your following photo? And a really lot of people do not have that set? So when you click to follow a blog, and I want to go see your blog I can't because it is not linked. So there are a few new people hanging around who might have blogs going but I cannot tell because it is not hooked up. I think that this is set up in the add/ manage section for blog following in the dashboard reader. It might also be part of the profile dealie. Anyway, if someone knows how to connect the profile to the following icon, that would be helpful and appreciated information. I can't stalk people I can't find!
Ok, so basically I got mine set up and now forgot how I did it!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Suddenly Santa TTT #11

I remember being in kindergarten about a thousand years ago and right around Christmas, The Big Santa Question game began.

Is he? Or isn't he real?

Most of us in that little kindergarten argued the pro- Santa side. Many of us had seen him with our very own eyeballs after all, myself included. In fact at that age, it had not even occurred to me that Santa might NOT be real. All the "is he or isn't he" silliness was just that. Silliness. I heard the story. I saw the man. I got the gifts. Real!

But all it takes is one. One little shit (Scott Richter- I remember you!)in the class who argued with all of us believers. He had good points. How could Santa get down the chimney? Elves- really? Come to think of it, it would take me fifteen minutes to walk around the block. How could Santa get everywhere around the whole big world in one mere night? The concept of being lied to by my parents and tricked into the story in its entirety by people around the world? That couldn't be right either.

The thing is, in my house growing up, you only got gifts from Santa if you believed in Santa. Even as a 5 year old, I was smart enough to keep my doubts to myself. Until I was about sixteen. Actually, I'm not sure I have ever let on to my parents that I might be having a faith issue. Well anyway. This year, Santa was supposed to come and visit the kids at my sister's house, where we were scheduled to spend the holiday before The Return of Puke- a- La-Lapalooza. They were kind enough to hold a do-over day for us on Sunday, and the girls Uncle was kind enough to re- perform as Santa.


He really was very convincing. Good voice, good *ahem* size, great costume. It was genuinely hard to tell that Santa there was actually someone I know.




The girls with Uncle Santa. Aren't they pretty? Their outfits are so cute and suited to each of them perfectly. (I am tired of trying to pretend to be impassive on the issue of their cuteness. They really are darned adorable! I mean, come on! Look at them!)

So, as I have said before, Genea takes on a belief and that belief is solid. You best just get out her way. There is a Santa and therefore, there is (sorta' like me at that age *ahem*) a Santa. Teena on the other hand, is potentially the focus of someones blog post in 20 years, complaining about the little shit who blew the idea of Santa for everyone in kindergarten.

It started a few weeks ago, when Teena was behaving poorly (control your shock! pop your eyeballs back in your head!) and inquired as to the hearing abilities of Santa. She did not quite believe that Santa could hear her from the North Pole. Apparently this started an avalanche of doubt. See in the above picture? Santa is coming in the door in the afternoon. After he left, the tower of faith started to crumble into bits of logic for her, and she made little comments to me the rest of the night.
"I thought Santa is supposed to come down the chimney".
"Santa is supposed to come at night in the dark".
"I don't think that was Santa, I think that was just someone wearing a suit".

SIGH. HEAVY SIGH!!!!

Later on, my Mom told my sister and I how her Dad would play Santa. He would come in all jolly and crap and talking about the good boys and girls, how great they were all year and such. But then, see, he had been coached ahead of time, and he would call out a kid on the bad stuff they had done too. Like he would growl, "but Michael, you have been spitting". My sister and I were so appalled that she had never shared this fabulous idea with us, that we never heard the end of the story. DANG! That was BRILLIANT! So, there is my Mom reminding me to bring "warm, long sleeved jammies" for my girls because she bought them sleeveless jammie dresses six months ago and she is tired of seeing them, they need something warm. And I am like.... huh? We wear like, 17 pounds of clothes when it is cold but ok, I'll try to remember that. She is sitting on this incredible, life changing idea about Santa, telling me it is cold outside in Wisconsin, in December!

Okay, so for Too True Tues(day), tell the story of how you found out Santa was not real. If you don't remember or if your story is dreadfully dull, tell a story about your kids and Santa. If even that leaves you yawning, tell a story about someone you heard of somewhere, and Santa! Leave a comment and link yourself to your own blog right down there (look down).


Friday, December 25, 2009

Un. be. flipping. liev. able.

Teena woke up sick today. Actually, she didn't wake up on her own, The Husband went and woke her up around 8:30 and set her next to me on the couch. She seemed out of it. Tired. Lethargic. She insisted she was fine, but was not interested in going to see if Santa had come. Genea went down to our wood burning stove, which has a chimney therefore is the entry point for Santa, and brought up the gifts.
Teena puked while opening her Santa presents! Ugh.
She proceeded to puke for the next several hours as I called family to cancel our potentially toxic appearance.
Is anyone getting an inkling of memory stirring?
We seem to have a new Christmas tradition in our home. Pukalicious.
The exact same thing happened last Christmas. Unbelievable! Read our exciting holiday from last year here, and our stay in the hospital here.

Now it is about 4:00 and she is doing better. She is eating verrrrrry sloooooooowly and it is not reappearing in the puke bowl, so that is an improvement! Evidently she decided that she had 6.5 hours of talking stored up and it all needs to be delivered. Now.

Poor Genea though. She was just devastated that we won't be going to see her Grandma. She sort of figured out for herself that changes would be coming to her already changed schedule, and she was Not. Happy. She asked me if we would get to see Grandma today and when I told her no, she started crying, threw herself into my legs and wailed "but I love her soooo muuuuuuuch". Okay, it was sad but it was cute too. Sweet in a sad kind of way.

So again this year we will have a "make up day" for Christmas. It is so strange that this happened again. Same kid. Same symptoms. Bizarre!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

first day of breaaaaayyyyayk

I never knew I was a songstress! I just wrote up this original song! It's okay, I know everyone is busy so I will notify the Grammy Awards myself. Now keep in mind my prolific use of artistic licence. Which is code for, I made up a bunch of extra stuff and it doesn't rhyme.
Now, you have to imagine that you say "Winterbreeeeaaaaaaaak" like that, really fast at the beginning and then draw out the end. Or it won't make sense. LOL!


On the first day of Winterbreak my true child gave to me.....
ONE pee soaked bed

On the second day of Winterbreak my true child gave to me.....
TWO tortured eardrums

On the third day of Winterbreak my true child gave to me....
THREE real hugs

On the fourth day of Winterbreak my true child gave to me
FOUR soggy Kleenex

On the fifth day of Winterbreak my true child gave to me
FIVE stolen shoes

On the sixth day of Winterbreak my true child gave to me
SIX gray hairs

On the seventh day of Winterbreak my true child gave to me
SEVEN severed doll heads

On the eighth day of Winterbreak my true child gave to me
EIGHT ugly insults

On the ninth day of Winterbreak my true child gave to me
NINE broken pencils

On the tenth day of Winterbreak my true child gave to me
TEN migraine headaches

On the eleventh day of Winterbreak my true child gave to me
ELEVEN screaming meltdowns

On the twelfth day of Winterbreak my true child gave to me
TWELVE nonsense questions

On the thirteenth day of Winterbreak my true child gave to me
THIRTEEN lies 'bout nothing

On the fourteenth day of Winterbreak my true child gave to me
FOURTEEN hoarded tin cans

On the fifteenth day of Winterbreak my true child gave to me
FIFTEEN faaaaaaaaaaaaaake hugs!

La la la!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

You're gonna want my life but you CANT HAVE IT!

For once I will be silent (after this, lol) and let the pictures of the inside of my water filtering pitcher do the talking.










Updated: larger picture of vile disgusting creepy crawler inside water pitcher

Friday, December 18, 2009

It's a Freight Train Coming

Things have been going pretty well around here lately. So well, that I have not wanted to post about it for fear of bringing on the "blog jinx". When Genea is in a sort of "lull" period, she behaves very much like you would expect a child with her background, only triple it. I think the every day dysfunction we get is Attachment Disorder. The unending oddities, the incessant demands for attention, the inability to handle even a simple frustration. Here is a great example. Every time Genea and Teena go out with Daddy, Genea loses a mitten. Every. Single. Time. Not when she goes to school. Not when she is out with me. Not when she goes out to play. Just when she and Teena have their Daddy Day (Saturdays usually). She generally loses this mitten between the house and the car. Sometimes in the car. Never in the restaurant, or at the store or wherever else they go. Never loses a mitten where there is a chance it might actually remain lost. I mean, what is that?

What we have coming on though is, I think, the Bipolar Disorder. It is subtle when it starts, and mostly excusable things. Genea hit Teena. Ok, kids hit. Actually no. A typical 6 year old does not hit her sister with a bag of books unprovoked. With cause, maybe, not for no reason. She is lying. All kids lie, don't they? No, most 6 year olds do not pee small amounts in their underwear all day until they reek of urine and then lie, and continue lying even when confronted with wet underwear. Toe walking. A lot of kids toe- walk once in a while up until about the age of 2 or so. Her impulse control starts to weaken, and many 6 year olds struggle with impulse control this is true. For Genea, she struggles with the impulse to deliberately gag on her food or drink.

The Dead RAD Eyes come on more frequently and she avoids eye contact. Her pupils enlarge and stay dilated. The tone of her crying changes. It becomes more shrill, more strident and piercing, more agonizing and desperate. Talking in her sleep, whimpering and calling out in her sleep. All these things will all accelerate and escalate. She will start to try to binge on carbohydrates. I never know what to do about that. Should I try to limit her from the binges or does her body need it? I expect she will start sleeping more heavily and taking a nap during the day. I can try to prevent it but she will literally fall asleep sitting up with a crayon in her hand. She will start to instigate problems either by breaking rules directly in front of me and calling attention to it, or by constantly asking for what she can't have and using these things as her "excuse" to blow into the Wango Tango (do you think Ted knows I am using that?). I don't know what to do about that either. When her brain starts to convulse into a panic or fear response, I tend to ask her what is wrong- I mean, I tend to try to find out why she is upset. But if the chemicals in her brain are frying, then there is no "excuse" or reason or thing to hang her feelings on. So, what if I keep leading her to find a reason for her nervous and scared feelings and it turns into a phobia?

I hate watching this come on. So far I have tried about 1000 different things to help her. So far I can help her delay the bottom and I can help make it not as bad, but I cannot prevent it and I cannot make it go away. So, we live through it. Again. And with good old winter break coming on (when ARE these children being educated I ask you???), we will be living through it 24 hours a day for 12 straight days.

Dear So and So,

This is one of those Mr. Linky weekly things by another blogger at 3 Bedroom Bungalow to Let in Crazytown, and I am participating this week since I have a few things to say.

Dear So and So,
When you park your stupid mini cooper across 2 spots it makes me want to crush it with my fist.

Dear So and So,
It is really fun showing you girls how to do stuff like making snowflakes out of folded paper. Now that you two are obsessed with it, I am not having fun picking up tiny specks of paper that seem to fly everywhere.

Dear So and So,
Thank you for inventing the internet. Thank you for inventing online ordering and thank you for saving me from the mall. Oh yeah, and thank you for delivery people who leave stuff directly outside my door so I don't have to step even one toe outside in the cold.

Dear So and So,
If you keep pooping next to your litter box I am going to stuff rags up your butt.

Dear So and So (Starbucks)
Will you marry me?

And now for the biggie.......

Dear So and So,
You need to realize that I will be selecting your nursing home and that day will come sooner than you think. I am sure you are aware that your offspring would not notice the smell of pee if he took a bath in it. I however, have consulted in dozens, yes dozens of nursing homes and I know exactly what to look for. Who do you want to advocate for you?
Who do you think will advocate for you?
Just wondering.


Sincerely,
Me

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

black !!! white !!!

There are two things in this world that Genea knows. She knows what is right, and she knows that all the other things in the world are not right. This makes her a bit inflexible but I like to think that it can work for her in a lot of ways. Sometimes changing her ideas can be like trying to pry Dennis Rodman off of a bar stool- just impossible. Not gonna' happen. But the ability to be decisive, to come down solidly on one side or the other, that can be a positive thing. Highly paid lawyers for example, need to be opinionated. Highly paid investment bankers who take care of their old parents (instead of sending them to the sick homes)need to be decisive. Myself, I see layers and layers and layers. I haven't always been that way, I used to have much more strong opinions. Maybe it is that I understand other sides now, not necessarily agreeing with whatever it is, but comprehending the perspective, the full picture. The Husband, he sees minutiae. He sees detail after detail all of which can be hyper-analyzed to death and beyond. Take my word for it...deaaaaaaaaaaaath...and..... beyoooooooooond....

As the weather has become cooler, we have layered up our children in clothes as is the preferred way of handling chill in this part of the country. See up north here, the weather can go from 30 to 60 degrees and back again in a day so you have to be prepared for a wide range. Teachers ask that kids are sent to school with several layers to add or remove as necessary, depending on how temperatures go. So we do. However.

Genea started coming home telling me her teacher said she needs to wear a warmer coat. This was when the weather was in the 40's. I set her clothes out the night before so as to minimize assaults on my brain prior to 9 am (hey! It used to be 10! For that matter, it used to be NOON!). Anyway, I dress my children cute, and temperature appropriate and I would put out a shirt with a hoodie or cardigan for her, jeans usually or sometimes leggings, and a fall coat. I was irritated that the teacher was saying Genea needed to be wearing a warmer coat. First of all, I ask her all the time- are you warm enough? Is that coat going to keep you warm etc? The other thing is, you know, it is 40 degrees and while that is cold, it is going to get 30-50 degrees colder very soon, and is going to stay that way for the next 4 months. So if I send Genea to school in her warmest winter coat in the fall, what the hell is going to keep her warm in the real winter? Am I supposed to send her to school with a chimney?

Suddenly.... swoosh ! Shazam! My brain flickered for a second and I had a flashback.... to last winter.... to Genea last year.... and I remembered. Genea won't wear a hoodie or a cardigan or a pullover or any of it. She wears a shirt. And she wears a coat. And that's it. So, once she has put her shirt on that leaves only 2 possibilities. She is going to:
A. Put on her coat
B. There is no b, see A.
See that there? That is what we call 'black and white thinking'. I am sure there are a dozen other ways to describe this pattern, like rigid or unyielding. It's one of those mysteries. Is it an Attachment Disorder thing? Is it a Bipolar Disorder thing? Is it a Genea thing? I am guessing it is a combination. Once this child gets an idea in her head, well look out.

I started telling her every day, or at least all the days I remember, don't take off your hoodie. Keep your sweater on. You can wear 2 shirts and it will be okay. If I forget, she comes home in a short sleeved t-shirt with a pullover around her waist or stuffed in her backpack and tells me she was hot at school. If I remember to tell her, she will do it and she will point it out to me when she gets home. Seriously, it is that much on her mind all day that she tells me the second she comes in the door! Anyway, I thought that was kind of cute. I mean, it's goofy for sure, but a silly thing too. Cute.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

its nobodies dream to drive a bus

Unless you are a 4 year old, most folks don't dream of driving a bus when they grow up. If they do, it's in the realm of being an astronaut, a garbage collector and a fish. It's not any one's idea of a great job. It may be a functional job, a paying job, a flexible job but for the most part, unless there is an alternate universe, bus driving is not a great job.
When Genea started school, we were lucky to get a lovely driver for her. A nice, pleasant woman who smiled and said things like "have a good night" when Genea would get down. I was excited when Teena got her bus this year. Teena has a different morning driver and she is lovely and pleasant as well. That has been great because if I had to drive a bus to support our family, well I'd probably get fired right quick. My attitude would be poor and I would definitely have a sore throat every night from all the yelling.
So I don't expect my kids bus drivers to be nice. They don't even have to be civil. I would not want to sit there and make nicey nice chat with parents dropping their screaming and fighting child off if it were me. I sort of expect them to be crabby and pissy really. But I always smile at the driver and say thank you anyhow. I figure if nothing else at least I am not being rude and making their day worse.
However, Genea's afternoon driver is just nasty. Let's call her Cruella. She is rude and horrible. She glares and deliberately avoids eye contact. She refuses to answer anything I say and pretends she can't hear me. And that's cool I guess. No one has to be my friend. I am not for everyone, this is true. But dammit, I don't want to have to give her a gift for the holidays. That's right, I don't want to! And I am seriously considering not doing it.
When Genea started school we had only had her for a year we were not prepared for all the school things we would have coming at us. Of the many things I hadn't really thought of, teacher and bus driver holiday gifts were on the list. Needless to say, going from a 2 income 1 child family to a 1 income 2 child family did not earn us extra columns in the bank account. Or anywhere. So $20 to $50 worth of stuff for 2 teachers and a bus driver was unplanned. I also knew though, that teachers just don't want reams of crap. They don't want or need any more junk with apples on it. Same for greatest teacher junk, and #1 educator junk. Since I didn't know any of them personally, I didn't know if someone had a pink bathroom they needed a little statue for, or a set of white towels. Does the teacher like Jean Nate perfume? Don't know. If you give a gift card then everyone knows either a. you are nice or b. you are cheap. I was going to be b.
So last year, for Genea's teachers and lovely bus driver, I had Genea make each of them a card in her best handwriting. I had to write everything out ahead of time and she copied the letters, mostly in the correct order. She decorated with glitter and crayons. Then I made soaps for them. I felt weird about sending crappy homemade stuff (and it was not actually any cheaper to do it that way in the end), but I thought if it were me, I would think that was nice. Everyone uses soap right? Even if you don't want it, it's an easy re-gift and you can take the credit yourself. Plus since I don't do greeting cards, everyone gets a kid-made card no matter what.
It is that time again, only now I have 3 teachers and 3 bus drivers! I am thinking I will make soaps again since I have all the stuff. If I add in $10 Starbucks cards, that will be $60, or $50 if I decide to cut Cruella out (oooh, I can drink the extra myself, mmm). What do you do? Do you make some beautiful thing that involves proficiency in 5 different craft areas? Do you take a chance and buy a real gift? Gift cards? Homemade stuff? And for teachers out there, tell the truth, what did you like and appreciate and what made you think, oh crap now I have to have this thing on my desk....

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Dear Universe

Dear Universe,


Did you really have to send a snow day and crampy pms at the same time? Answer ASAP please.

By the way, your blizzard sucked.

You're not as funny as you think you are.

Sincerely,

The Accidental Mommy

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Late TTT Entry- Warning- sensitive material!

I got a late entry to TTT, submitted anonymously. If you decide to proceed, you will realize why! It is a little..... for older audiences. Audiences over say, 18.
Seriously, if you don't want to read about other peoples private business, STOP RIGHT THERE!

Now, here is an absolutely hysterical story about a little holiday gift to oneself that has gone astray. Ready? Go!

The rabbit died in August. As in v i b r a t o r. Hey! I'm single, I live in a high stress environment and I have needs. Don't judge.
I waited till Christmas cause you know there's a lot of packages being delivered and an unmarked package wouldn't be noticed right????? Hmmmm....maybe not.....
Progression of events (Keep in mind that I live in a very, very, very small town.)
1.Ordered it last Monday
2. On Tuesday UPS sent me an email that it would be delivered Wednesday.
3.They also sent me another email about somebody else's joy package. As in not me. Not a good sign.
4. Wednesday nothing arrived.
5. Thursday night I tracked it online and UPS stated that it was undeliverable because there wasn't a street address. (Funny....there was one on the first email they sent me.)
They also stated they were sending me a postcard to locate me. Ummmmm....how are they going to send me a postcard when they don't have my address???
6. Lay in bed and hyperventilate about calling them regarding the precious package because they KNOW me.
7. I have the phone number for the distribution hub where my joy was residing because I know them PROFESSIONALLY. So....
8. Friday morning call UPS hub. Sweet Connie told me I needed to talk to Customer Service Desk and patched me through.
No one answered so I called back. Explained my problem to Delightful Debra and she told me no problem she'd find my package and call me back.
9. 5 minutes later Debra called me back to confirm she'd found my package, had readdressed it and I would have it this afternoon. She was much sweeter than normal. Great. She knows....
10. Spent Friday afternoon hiding in my house knowing that my hot UPS guy would be delivering my unmarked package and that he would know something naughty resided inside.
11. 4:30 hot UPS guy rang. my. doorbell. Damn. He wanted to confirm my last name cause he couldn't read it. Uh huh. Right. But he couldn't make eye contact and you know I notice that stuff.
12. As he's walking down the sidewalk I comment that the package is really light and feels empty. He never looks up and keeps walking.
13. Open package as hot UPS guy is getting in his truck. IT'S EMPTY EXCEPT FOR MY RECEIPT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
More hyperventilating but I'm a woman on the edge so I CHASE him and his big, brown truck down the street IN HEELS waving my sad, empty package over my head. No. I am not kidding.
14. Hot UPS guy stops the truck and says, "what....was it empty????" Mmmmmmm...yeah. He asked me if I know my neighbors (the snoop doggy dog neighbors) next door. Yeeeessssss. Well....maybe they took it cause I delivered it there on Wednesday. Wishing I could fade away through the asphalt of my street. I asked him what would happen. He said, well they'll open it at the hub, examine the contents and contact the vendor. Uh....it's already open and now YOU'RE going to read my receipt. The humiliation is growing by the minute.
15. Now all the staff at the local UPS hub are still laughing hysterically about my package.
16. Snoop dog neighbors are enjoying my "Merry Christmas to me" package.
17. Mrs. Snoop Dog is affiliated with my oldest daughter's professional life. Lovely.
18. I am still frustrated cause Mr. Happy isn't here and yeah....there's always the old-fashioned way but at the end of my days that is just too much trouble. Fast and easy. That's my motto.
So instead of going to bed satisfied I'm mortified.
Merry Christmas to me.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Too True Tues(day) #10?

I hope #10 is right! If not, I am guessing no one will care much. If you do, feel free to go back and count and let me know. It is time again for Too True Tuesday! Time to tell the truth. Be honest. Let it all hang out.

Well, most of it.

This week tell us what you are getting yourself for Christmas (or holidays in general). If you are not a holiday celebrator, go buy yourself something and tell us about that!

To: Me
From: Me
With Love.
Mwah!

I will feel very sad with you if I hear crap like 'it's all about my children'. Or, 'I have so many others to care for I don't have time for myself'. 'I spend so much on my children- I never want them to go without- there is just nothing left for me'. Can it. If it never occurred to you to get yourself a gift at the holidays, start now. Great idea isn't it! Listen, you need to rationalize something, anything, you come to me. I will hook. you. up.

Seriously though, most of us are Moms with no time and very little life. I need to be getting a break. Taking time away. An evening out for myself blah blah blah. I can't do that. But bloody hell I can buy me a beautiful handbag to carry to the bus stop! I can use a lovely perfume specially stunk up in France to cover the smell of pee on my leg (or blend with it, as the case may be)! If my kids have to eat generic crackers with a crushed vitamin sprinkled on top for a few days because I spent a bunch of money on hoity shoes, well, I don't cook anyway! (Ok no not really the last one).

(Unrelated side note, I can hear loud music outside, the Packers must have scored)(Green Bay is a small place).

So what am I gifting myself with love this year? Super warm slippers. Don't laugh! My feet get sooooo cold it is painful. I was sleeping with a heating pad under my feet but I started to notice some inconsistencies with the cord and figured that might not be a great idea anymore. Anyway, I found some really pretty ones that have genuine shearling which sounds important and warm. Plus they are expensive so that must mean they are great. I know it sounds lame, but that is what it is!

What are you gifting yourself? Follow the rules (you know who you are Torina) and blog your gift and why, then come back here and link it up. Even if your gift is super sassy (and you know who YOU are) you can still play joyously! If you decide not to play, you should know you do run the risk that I will make something up for you.


Monday, December 7, 2009

Santa Claus is coming......

Otherwise known as the poster boy for Bribe and Threaten Parenting.

Many years ago, I was in a car with Cousin Unabitch and her young daughter, we'll call her Eee. Eee was misbehaving in some mild form, and though my cousin was addressing the issue in a bland passive way, I thought I could jump in and improve the situation for her, since she wasn't really getting to the point, of which Eee needed to shut up. So I jumped in and made a comment to Eee to the effect of "if you quit being a pain in the ass, I will do something nice for you". To which my cousin whipped her head around and stated "no no no, we don't bribe her to be good. We want her to be good because she wants to".

Well knock me over with a diaper genie. I mean, if you are not bribing and not threatening,( and she certainly was not spanking), what is it exactly that you are doing? What does that leave??? Now, Eee was and still is a shy and naturally quiet and calm child. She had about as much motivation to misbehave as a fly does to skip over a juicy turd. It is just nature. How they are made. A person never knows what goes on behind closed doors of course, but from where I was sitting, it looked to me like Cousin Unabitch was just re-packaging bribery into a prettier picture. Eee was about 4 or 5 at the time and now that I have all this personal experience I can say for sure, kids don't behave because they want to do it. Take out all the obvious bribery tools like money, candy, stickers, toys etc. Then remove all the overt threats such as physical pain, favored things taken away, confinement etc. What do they want? They want to connect. They want you. When you praise a child for doing well, you are using your praise as a positive way to prompt the child to do it again. There is an effect that if the child does not do what you want, you will not praise them. You will remove yourself emotionally if they do not behave. You can call it love based, or positive parenting or whatever you want to call it. If you ask me, that is still bribing or threatening, it just looks and sounds much nicer.

Embrace it, own it, call it like it is!

And if you want to ask me again, lemme tell you, nothing symbolizes Bribe and Threaten Parenting like Santa! The whole gambit is one enormous bribe followed up by an even larger threat. What's worse, is the entire (Christmas celebrating) world is in on it. There are reminders in song, and on TV. In school, in people's yards and everywhere else you go there is Santa, watching you. He see's you when you're sleeping, he knows when you're awake. He knows if you've been bad or good blah blah blah.

So Genea, she is a rather rigid little girl and that serves her well in a lot of ways. When it comes to Santa she accepts Santa is out there and therefore accepts the entire package. Flying reindeer, fat guy in the chimney, elves. Teena, she is more of a questioner kind of kid. I have been getting on both of them lately for their heavy duty extreme whining and today Teena wanted to know, "if Santa can see us does that mean he can hear us too"? When I told her yes, OF COURSE HE CAN, she looked at me squinty eyed for a second and said, "nooooooo, how could he?" Listen Teena, your mother would not lie to you!

The past few weeks we have been laying it on thick. Calmly asking the girls, what do you think Santa will say? Do you think Santa will be happy with you right now? So once a year I outsource responsibility to a third party in the North Pole, loaded with gifts and happiness. I have been known to reach for the phone and pretend to start dialing, since I have a very special circumstance here and so I have Santa's home phone number. Gonna' turn them in myself.

Reminder: tomorrow is Too True Tuesday. What are you buying yourself for Christmas?

Friday, December 4, 2009

Little Things

Sometimes, it's the little things that make a person happy. Sometimes, a life is just so lame and-or boring that the owner of the life has to really scrutinize a situation to find the happy.
Here is my $14.oo happy.




A new day planner! Empty pages full of possibilities and goals. Such as, organizing myself! This new planner has a whole section dedicated just to organizing! ONE whole section!!! It will have to be better than my current system. See the finger in the next pic that has B/W, that reminds me to write a post about black and white thinking. The 'exe', that reminds me to get out that page of exercises the chiropractor gave me last week and have them learned by 10 AM since this time he wants to see them. Probably a perverted thing. I insisted that I knew them and was using them at the last appointment. There is just no trust in this world anymore.

See, I am great at writing things down. I can make a up a list that would have Martha Stewart or Oprah peeing in their collective pantsuits. Oh yeah, I can write the shit down. Finding the stupid list, and remembering I made a list. Those are my issues.
Here is the page for notes. Note that there is nothing on it! No ma'am! Nothing yet to do on that page! (my apologies for the sideways pic).


Then there are the weeks ahead. Again, nothing on them. I found out when I got home from Planner Buying Day that I got the kind where you have to write in the dates yourself. I mean REALLY, could the jackasses not even throw me a printed number? Joke is on them though, for some strange reason I kind of enjoy mindless tedious tasks in small doses. Trustworthy, stable sorts of activity where you really cannot make a mistake. Don't know why. ANYway, see all the nothing? No responsibilites, meetings, school functions or visits from anyone to plan for.



See, this here is what I am setting aside, into my collection of day planners that goes back to college.
*Note this photo is a simulation of a random week in the life. I couldn't show a real one because it has names all over it. Sadly, I got bored of trying to make up things I didn't do for effect so this is the sample, as is.








Okay so to reward anyone who made it this far without clicking into a solitaire game, we have this cutest little baby sweater ever!




It's a kimono baby sweater in pink cammie. How cute is that!!! The pattern is from a book called Mason- Dixon Knitting (the first one) and it was easy enough that I could do it. I am a process knitter, I don't especially care about learning new skills and having the fanciest edging. I like to knit and I knit to relax. This is a prototype for the bunches of baby stuff I am going to knit for my new incoming niece! Which means I made a ton of mistakes and left my ends hanging out (I HATE weaving in ends! I would rather Genea and Teena do a root canal on me) but just wanted to see how the whole thing worked. Anyway they have a blog too it is right here.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

A few cool links

A few connections.....

Here is an amazing little video from Oprah called The Girl Effect. I am not suggesting anyone support or donate to any of the causes she has listed (though they are worthy, to say the least), just check out the video because it is really cool.

Oprah? Are you sending me my invite to the show? Please don't use email to confirm, that does not appear to be a valid way to get invited places (such as the White House ha ha).

Here is an AWESOME incredible resource that I had no idea was out there. The site is called Sensory Processing Disorder and it is loaded, LOADED with information, tips tricks and tests related to what the site owner calls SPD. This is also known as Sensory Integration Disorder and I believe there are other tags for it as well. Anyway, it was sent to me in a comment on my post about Boring Stuff by a private- profile-super- secret- lurker named Sarah. If your child gets overstimulated by seemingly ordinary things, or appears oblivious to things other children would be interested in, there could be a sensory link. Worth checking out! I personally like to use the "WalMart Test" (that I invented and is totally and only my opinion and you know what those are like.....). If your child has a meltdown, a visit from The Crazy or a sudden drop into the Wango Tango while in WalMart, there is a better than good chance that she/he has sensory issues. No science behind my theory, just my own opinion.

Have a good one!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Thanks Mom

I have a grievance. I have a grievance and I am airing it here.

When we were at my parents for Thanksgiving, my mother called me into a room and showed me some pictures that she has framed. She has dozens of photos of our family everywhere in her house. Her mother did the same and I think it is really cool. She picked up a picture that was about 10 years old of herself, my sister and I. Then she said "Look at your hair here, doesn't it look pretty?". Then she picks up another photo, really old, points at me in it and says "Look here, look how nice your hair was then".

I stared.

*thud* is the sound an eyelash would have made falling, if such a thing dared to happen.

I have been growing my hair long because I love long hair. I fear "Mom hair", that is true, but I also really love it long. I don't like to take care of it long, and quite frankly I wander around looking like a wife of Warren Jeffs from his polygamous sect in Texas most of the time. I pin up the bangs on top in a little poof, then shove all the rest into a ponytail, loop, or ugly braid most days. But it's there when I want it to look good and after all, it is my head and my head has been owned by me longer than it was owned by her by now.

I was fairly well stunned. Sadly, not terribly surprised. So I muttered a few things about, well yeah it looked good then and um yeah, that was nice. Then my mother is starting to notice that I am not as excited about her observation as she is. So she starts asking "Don't you think it was pretty then? I mean, you have to agree it was pretty". I said something to the effect of, "I can't believe you" and went out to tell The Husband that my mother just told me my hair was ugly. He is a good The Husband and if nothing else I have taught him his lines well, so he said of course, that he thinks my hair looks great.

By now my mother has charged out of the room following me. Now she is hammering at me to agree with her. "It looked good, you don't agree that it looked good? You don't think it was pretty?" and she repeated herself about 20 more times. Stuck like a record she was, or like Genea on a bad day (more on that later). Finally I told her, "you know what, I am totally going to write this down on my blog and the whole world wide web is going to know what you said". Then she repeated the questions above and ended it. She must have thought she saw some confidence that needed squelching. Sigh.

So we were on the phone the other day and she mentioned something she had said on Thursday but I had thought I did not hear her right so I had ignored it. Lucky for me she repeated herself. She said, she doesn't think Genea has gotten any better in the past 2 years. Not better at all, in fact maybe even worse.

Talk about soul-crushing. Damn.

I work harder with Genea on any given day than I ever have in the span of any 2 random months of my entire life. Genea spent the first 18 months or so with us doing the Miss Pretty Perfect act with other people. Not at home with us mind you, but around anyone that was not us, she was a delightful charming child. It was all fake. So now the past year or so around my mother aka Genea's grandmother she has started to let out a smidge, just a smidge of The Crazy. So that is what I told her. I said, its a compliment she feels more comfortable with you now. She used to be fake around you and now she is showing herself a little.

The truth is, even a little peek into The Crazy is more than folks can take. The girls stayed with my parents for a few days over the summer and my mom sent them home early when they were surprised by a visit from The Crazy. It sent my mother over the edge and after a day of it was so overwhelmed, sucked in and dragged down, she called us to pick them up early. The Husbands mother, the other grandmother, saw a brief glimpse about a year ago and she literally ran out of my house, hustled down the stairs crying after less than 10 minutes. She had to leave.

So that's how things are rolling over here. Uphill.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Genea Was Brave (and now she is done)

When we were in New Mexico visiting The Husbands origins and family, we all decided to go out for a hike. Now one does not need to strain oneself to imagine conditions that put me in a position to where being outside in the nature was preferable to the lovely warm indoors, which is where people belong. I voluntarily went into the woods and canyons and stuff where bugs and vermin live in droves. Yes I did. So we went to some state park where The Husband knew his way around (he said) since he had lived there his whole growing up life.



Seriously, the only way I would normally walk anywhere is if there is a bar or a handbag sale on the other side of your rotten little gravelly path. And I can't go to bars anymore because I can't drink anymore because I need all my wits about me to live with these children and keep us all alive. Can't be going around with muted powers of observation.



ANYhow, so I let The Husband make the decisions and choices. I KNOW what you are thinking and you are right. He chose some jumbled up path with rocks and tree roots and nature junk all over it to get to some waterfall.



It was a ONE AND A HALF MILE WALK.




It was 1.5 miles of serious hiking people. Canyons and hills and such. Remember we live in Wisconsin. I grew up in Chicago where our hills were former landfills capped off (by the mob) (LOL). My girls think a rain ditch is a hill.





This is the janky waterfall. It was another 743 miles to get to the actual water. Since it was about 38 degrees outside and oh yeah, we had already walked a mile and a half, I said haaaiiiillllll NO we would not be going all the way down in that big huge hole. Okay, but you see what is feeding the waterfall up there at the top, it's a river or creek or whatever. As we were hiking we came to a point wherein our path mistakenly turned straight into the stream creek thing, right at the point where it was raging over broken up mossy rocks. Only there was no mistake, we had to cross IN the river to get to the other side. All 3 of us stood and glared at The Husband for a few minutes and he finally carried Genea over the rocks and walked over with Teena. Then he came back for me since I was perfectly happy to go back to the minivan and leave if he didn't.

We saw the waterfall after walking the rest of the way over the hills. Teena and her Daddy spent time looking at the nature things, little plants and petrified turds, while Genea and I had more concrete plans of getting the heck out of there. So she and I hustled back. She asked me if I could roll up her pants. Naturally I went with the immediate reaction of.... nonsense question! But no, what she wanted was for me to roll up her pants so she could try to walk through the raging river rapids herself. She wanted to try it. Walking in the water. Over the rocks. Over the slimy green stuff. Where she was going to have wet feet and be stuck that way for awhile. Where she could get, could easily get, knocked over and washed away. Fall over, fall in. She wanted to try, she told me. To be brave and to try.


Well knock me out with a diaper genie! I mean, this child is afraid of lint. Not just afraid, terrified, of just about everything she has ever come across. Paralyzed she was last week, unable to speak or move at the sight of the shampoo bowl at our hairstylists, even though she has been there and was fine 3 other times. She had a near panic attack when I changed the generic wheat bread I buy for her pbj's. Genea lives in fear. Fear is so prevalent in our lives it is like having a third kid.

I agreed I would let her try but only with her Daddy.








It actually looks fairly mild in the photos but take my word for it, it was a good 6 inches deep and moving fast.






And Genea was done and safe. And I still made The Husband walk me over too. And she and I walked ahead of him and Teena again and talked the whole rest of the way about how brave she was. How scary that was, and how she tried it anyway. And since she tried, now she knew she could do it!!!!!!!!! Because she DID IT!


Wooo Hoooo!


If anyone wants to leave a comment for Genea in addition to any regular comments, I will read it to her and let you know what she says.
***updated*** I forgot to mention the best part. As we were walking back to the car, Genea and I, and I was gushing over her bravery she told me, "I don't ever have to be brave again.... I did it"!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Poop Loops

Ok, so Thanksgiving is what it is. Once again this year, the world failed to bend to my wishes and provide me with a turkey free buffet of food. Stupid world. However, somehow a magical plate of ham appeared next to me during dinner and so I was able to have my ham and eat it too. And a bunch of other stuff.



Do your kids do this? Last week Teena informed me "you should always try Mama. Even if you don't like somefing you should always try because if you keep trying it you might like it a- cuz now I like beans". She says, with bean juice dripping off her chin dimple. Mmmmm hmmm. Thanks for the tip Teena. I have only been saying that for the past 5 flipping years! EVERY day, for FIVE years, up to THREE times a day! But whatever Teena, sounds good. She also told us we should be trying to eat healthy things that are good for our bodies. Mmmm. Really. Thank you public school. Now she is going to think chips are a bad thing for lunch. If she turns up her nose at pizza puffs it could get bad. She is going to be one skinny little student I tell you.



Actually what is funny, I think, is that here in Wisconsin they tell you things like milk and butter and cheese are healthy foods of value. A "value add" for the body. Right. Since when is butter something good for you? Only here in this state.



So Thanksgiving at my parents house was a lot of fun. Cousin Unabitch was fairly well behaved. She would drop little insults at me "you really better hope your kids don't turn out like you ha ha" and then turn and peel off with laughter at how hilarious her stupid ass is. I rolled my eyes several times, which I believe was in stride with her level of immaturity. Oh yeah, speaking of immature....



*Petty and i mmature warning* I am going to be mean* REAlly mean and RUDe too*** Awful!!!! Don't look if you might be appalled***

BAAAAH ha ha, I think she gained more weight. Mean, horrible of me. I KNOW! But for the love of cabbage the woman was wearing a knit dress! KNIT! Come ON! Every roll and bulge could be seen from outer space!



The best part of the day involved my little nephews. My girls and my sisters boys are all tangled together age -wise. Genea is 6, First Nephew is 5, Teena is 4 and Next Nephew is 3. So they are a riot together and manage to sound as if there are 13 children in the house. Anyhow, the boys got hold of some dress up bead necklaces. The kind that are really inexpensive plastic. They are shiny and sparkly and all different pastel colors. They had all been throwing the beads around for a good half hour. Up in the air, across the floor, at each other etc. Teena started that one to be fair. At home she will throw beads in the air and watch them land, then tell me what shape it makes or if it looks like a giraffe or a fork or something. But, Teena is not responsible for the next part. At which time the boys started dropping beads from their butts and screaming in the strident voices of little boys everywhere, "we're pooping we're pooping we're pooping"!!!! Within seconds the girls were pooping beads too. Then a grandma got in there and pointed out that if they are doing this they should be doing it right, and showed them how to dispense of the poop beads in a more genuine way. Reassessed their props and organized the poop loops. Now there are dozens of people making poop loops and beads splattering everywhere. It was SO FUNNY!



Maybe you had to be there.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Too True Tues(day) #9

Wooo hoooo it is that time again.... TTT! Too True Tuesday is your chance to tell the truth to the world. Forget your nicey nice voice, and screw polite conversation. Abandon the fake smile and let the little voice inside your head come out. Tell it like it is sista- fren!


I'm in the holiday spirit as usual for Thanksgiving. Looking forward to the festivity of the holiday blah blah blah family and friends coming together blah blah blah celebrate the season. Just call me Perky Pollyanna. So anyway, I'm effing grateful. Really. I just wish, yet again, that I could be grateful for something that is not a turkey.


Turkey sucks. I said it.

SUCKS!


We have Thanksgiving coming on Thursday. I have never had turkey that was good. Unless it was draped over a pig carcass. And called ham. Dry, chewy with the texture and flavor of a cardboard box that was used to hold cat litter. Why don't we just have cardboard? Easier, cheaper and I have a bunch of it in my garage already. We go to my parents house for this holiday in The South of Wisconsin, and my mom refuses to make anything other than turkey. It is tradition and for some bizarre reason my mother is a tradition fiend. If it was a tradition to take a long walk off a short pier, she would be there. She can be fickle though and there is no logic to the traditions she insists on and the ones she considers "garbage". Like the tradition of taking my kids for a few days after the holiday. Somehow it's okay to assert her constitutional right to the pursuit of happiness regardless of tradition when we go this year (and this year, they are not invited to stay- booooo!). Mind you, she doesn't like turkey either. You read that right. She doesn't like turkey but she makes one every year because it is a tradition. So you can see, there is very little for me to work with here. Every year I put in my plug for a ham (great stuff ham) and every year we talk about how sickly turkeys are and every year we have a stupid turkey anyway.


So the subject of this weeks TTT is, your least favorite holiday and why. And just for fun and balance, your favorite holiday and why.


I don't like Thanksgiving because I don't like turkey (and I also am opposed to forced gratitude, I'll be effing grateful when I want to be effing grateful).


My favorite is 4th of July. Its summer, usually sunny and I love fireworks and outdoor festivals. Really, explosives and alcohol after a hot sweaty day, what could be better?


(since this is my blog I will sneak in that I really have fun on Christmas these days what with the kids and all. It was a boring sort of holiday when there were no kids - religion aside).

So, join in! All you have to do is write yourself up a little post and link back here. Then you put your name down on the Mr Linky deal so everyone else can find you.

AND I WILL REALLY APPRECIATE A STRONGER SHOWING THAN LAST TIME WHERE ONLY 3 PEOPLE PLAYED WITH ME! IF YOU DONT WANT TO PLAY THEN YOU RUN THE RISK THAT I WILL MAKE A STORY UP FOR YOU!
Just saying.

*Updated: evidently there was a problem with the link system. It should be fixed now.
Right here is a link to my post last year where I outline all the different ways I have tried turkey in the past.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Tired and more tired

Just. so. tired. Tired of fighting arguing whining. Tired of having to be in line-of- sight all day every day. The echo of the mornings tantrums and fits is still ringing in my ears even as the afternoon selection of tantrums and fits is beginning. Constant, unending forceful ploys for attention. On and on and on and on and ooooooon. Shrieking and wailing at top volume, a sound that is soul crushing and tap dancing on every nerve I have.
I am just so tired of it all. Can we not take a break for one. single. day?
Maybe I should take up smoking. It would be so lovely to light one up and pssssssst.... whooooosh..... aaaaaaaaaahhhh..... holding the little stick of joy in my shaking fingers as the vile cloud of toxins floods into my lungs and the disgusting taste seers down my throat. Mmmmm. Sounds lovely.

(no not really, about the smoking).

Saturday, November 21, 2009

New Stuff (take 3)

Hi!
I am changing up a few things in here just for fun. I love the new background look- it cracks me up. Its called Happy Fields. It makes me laugh because if I tried to grow something, this is how it would turn out. A little wild and overgrown, a little on the edge, but pretty regardless of my efforts. It is from TCBOTB and they put a little link up top on the left.
I put together a new store and gift guide from Amazon down on the right. It has toys and things my girls have loved to play with and do. Even though the widget shows toys, it has all the books about children that I have read and learned from, as well as my favorite "fun" reading books. I had to actually go back in my order history all the way to 2002 to get that many books to list! Then there is a small section for "Stuff" which will be growing but is for little things I like or find useful.
The Amazon store helps me out with a small percentage of the sale, so if you are going to order from Amazon (and lets face it, they totally rule and there is no parking to deal with), if you could please do it from my store link or my overall Amazon link at the bottom--- I will really appreciate it!
I am getting BlogHer ads in the next week, which is so exciting for me! I am going to shift to a 3 column format which should be obvious and not intrusive to the overall blog at the same time.
I changed my comment format to be interactive. Hopefully it works! I saw it on another bloggers post and it works well. Sort of like how wordpress comments go. I want to be able to comment on comments and there has not been a good way to do that, so I hope this goes the way it should.
*updated- it didn't.


I still want to go to Oprah. Oprah- can you hear me? I remembered last night, I made a few other big efforts to get on the show. They were seeking out moms who were overwhelmed and at risk of going off the deep end.



!!!!!
I mean seriously- why not just call the show, seeking out Essie!
Sadly, a few unfortunate factors blocked me from success. First, they wanted a letter about why you were overwhelmed. I wrote a letter. It was too many words. Like, quadruple the word count allowed. It took me 3 days to get the word count down to where the application would accept my entry. Of course by then, the due date had gone by. So I reconfigured my letter a bit and sent it anyway.
I rewrote the introductory paragraph to point out that I clearly was in far more disastrous of a position than any other mom who might have written in. Any woman who was able to get her letter in on time would have to be more together than myself. See, by virtue of my lateness I was thereby proving my appropriateness for the show!
Alas, I got no response.
(but that's okay because it turned out to be about mom's who really had gone off in a deadly sort of way).
(So my wait continues).

Friday, November 20, 2009

O nooooo O!

No Ope no, say it's not so! OOOOOOpraaaaaah don't leave me!
I have been watching Oprah since she was an ordinary local talk show out of Chicago. I know 2 people who have been on as guests over the years. I have been in the audience of the Jenny Jones show and the Jerry Springer show but never Ope. I have been procrastinating trying to get into the audience for years.... decades.....!
I tried to call for tickets one time on the phone and got through. But the show they were booking for was about people who were afraid to fly. So the producer person on the phone asked me if I were afraid to fly and I had to tell the truth. I was honest and I don't think I should have been penalized for it. I said I was not afraid to fly! I didn't screw up their episode! I DID THE RIGHT THING out of the kindness of my heart and the genuine respect for truth in my soul and my fear of looking so stupid on tv trying to look scared of an airplane when I am not.
I want to, I NEED to get to the Oprah show. Please! Help! I don't need to be a guest, I just want to be in the audience of a good show (not like a Karaoke contest show, like a give stuff away to pathetic people show). I am pathetic! I am pitiful! I need a lot of stuff! ALL MY STUFF SUCKS!!!!
What angle will get me the best chance I wonder. The makeover angle? Pitifully dressed mother of 2 with a phobia of "Mom hair".
Makeovers for women who smell like pee and the children who love them.
Maybe a home makeover?
My front door falls off when I open it.
My yard was "landscaped" by an 80 year old woman and we have never changed it except for hiring the "professional" who took our money and ran.
All my stuff is broken or held together with duct tape and gorilla glue.
The 1980's vomitted in my kitchen.
What else do I have?
Women whose mothers in law are impure of spirit.
A Mom forced to quit her job because of health insurance.
Moms of children in need of an exorcism.
Women who think cooking a meal should never take longer than eating the meal.
People who refuse to give stupid greeting cards to others even on their birthdays.
Women who think all their friends live inside a laptop.
Or should I go for it...... Mom's of adopted children diagnosed with Autism and Failure to Thrive and Addison's Syndrome and Depression who turn out to have Reactive Attachment Disorder and Bipolar Disorder but who do great in school even as they steal slices of American cheese and hide it in the bucket for pee clothes at home and the Mom's had to quit their jobs in order to stay home and take care of said adopted child and her sister and their 2 poopie cats and do annoying stuff all day like cook and wash out pee clothes!
O! This is sO bad!
I must get tickets to be in the audience in the next year before Oprah quits forever! I can get there in 3 hours if I am the one driving. Email me Ope, email me!!!!!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Blowing my cover with a massive brag fest

Shhhhhhh.

There something that I think is really amazing about children. Fascinating and interesting. Crazy cool. But don't go telling anyone I said this because it could shatter my image into the gutter (how big headed am I to think I have an image anyone but me cares about- ah well).

I think it is so awesome that a person can teach them stuff and they learn it.

Not me mind you. See, I can't teach kids worth a damn. People always told me they thought I would be a great teacher. They were wrong, wrong wrong. I worked with Teena and Genea all summer on educational whoosie whatsie stuff and neither of them learned a thing. Nothing. At all. ! . If you account for all the time Teena spent either a. talking or b. trying to do it all her own way that pretty much explains it. Then Genea spent all of her time being a. oppositional and b. deliberately inattentive so she learned how to do those things with greater persistence, but that was just not what I was trying to accomplish. Not was I was hoping for.

My kids have learned far more from PBS and DVD's than they ever have from me. And that is just fine (I just wish I would have saved myself the effort. And time! And oh my shit the hassle!). Teena just sucks in information from everywhere around her. Like if you are wearing black and every cat hair for miles scurries up and gloms onto your clothes forever. She learns just by being in the general area of something new. We were out at a restaurant when she was almost 2, a time when we were still counting her age in months instead of years, and she started pointing at a sign on the wall and yelling out the letters. How could she do that? M! K! A! Now, when we are doing Genea's math flash cards, she sits and collects the finished ones and has the answers memorized. Today she made word flash cards for herself, for fun, before school.

Now Genea is in school and is like a detached vacuum hose- where it flops and flips around sucking up little things from the whole room. It is just amazing, stunning, what she is learning and retaining. The Husband and I were watching something on TV the other night and Genea started pointing out- there is the White House, there is the Court with all the judges, and there is the.... the..... let me think..... (imagine 4 minutes going by so I can spare you) finally she says, OH YEAH its the tin can. Tin Can? Yeah, the Lin Can. The Lin Can? OHHHH the Lincoln Memorial? Yes Mama, that's what I said! She is 6 years old. It is just amazing to me what she learns and comes home and can tell me about. The Liberty Bell! England! She can read entire books in a sitting. Her reading is so good she is actually a few weeks ahead of her class on word recognition-- CRAZY COOL!

Not all is pretty yellow roses. She struggles in math enormously (like me) and spends 1-2 hours getting math homework done, one sheet. She has been unable to pass her first addition time test, on zero's, because she freezes up either from the testing situation, or the pressure of the timer. But she knows her zero's, so I am ok with it. I don't care about testing. The rest will come and the teacher is trying different things to help her through. GET THIS- her teacher gave her an area to work when she is feeling distracted and Genea goes there on her own when she needs to focus!

Oh yeah, and they can both imitate Cantonese!
*snort tee hee*

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Random icks

Here is a gross picture of my thumb. Everybody say ewwwww! I scraped a layer of skin off on the plastic edge of a laundry basket right there where the cuticle meets the end of the fingernail. IT FREAKING HURTS! AND ITS GROSS!



Notice my pretty nail polish. Nail polish will not stay on my nails, it just won't. I know there are all kinds of things you can put on to make the polish stay more than through one shower but frankly, the amount of work required is more than I am willing to do. Like the color? I don't usually do this but.... I am copying a celebrity. I saw Heidi Klum flicking around with a medium gray color nail polish on Project Runway and I thought it looked cool. It is really hard to look cool when you are *ahem* my age, and all the cool stuff is designed for people who are *ahem* other ages. You have two choices, you can do the "mom" look, or you can look as if you are trying not to do the "mom" look but everyone knows you are one anyway.



Anyhow, the nail polish did NOT make me look like Heidi Klum and I want a refund. Even my hair is still brown! My disgusting cuticles are still disgusting too. I know there are things I can do about it but I tried them and now I am out of time.



Bad news, Cousin Una-bitch is coming to my parents house for Thanksgiving. I just realized today that I have been spelling her name wrong all this time, "Uni-bitch". *sigh* I just don't have time for all these details! I saw on TMZ this morning that Levi Ricki Hollywood Johnston was being compared to the Unabomber and I was horrified to discover I have been writing it incorrectly all this time. Cousin Unabitch got her name from the Unabomber (well, she got her name from me but that is where I thought of it) as she is a horrible person who drops these vicious nasty insults on people out of nowhere and she does it for fun. She is the type who then coo's at you "oh, I forgot you are so sensitive, here come give me a hug" when what you want to give her is a nice big shove down the stairs. One of these days when no one is looking......



Here are my girls being WAY TOO CUTE. See, they are wearing their fairy princess butterfly wings and repairing something broken with their tools. Hee hee.



They have not been getting along well lately so this was great! I don't know what is up, they last about 2 minutes then start screaming and howling. No middle ground with either of them. I think they have been peeing on their corner of the toybox trying to establish power. (NOT really, for once I can say.... no they are not really peeing on stuff lol).

The end.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Boring stuff

Seriously, boring stuff coming ahead. I have been reading and researching and have found some things out that I did not know. So I am going to share what I found because I thought it was significant to my daughters' circumstances-- Genea that is, not The One I Gave Up Caffeine For.

Start throwing your eggs.....now.....! I have always found neurology interesting. When I was in the 7th grade, about 100 years ago, I did a report on Autism. It was facinating to me that a child could start out with no problems and develop, for no evident reason, a disorder so severe it could cut off speech, interactions and interest in the world, after he turned 2. When I worked in a group home, there was a middle aged man who was "non-verbal". He had seizures a lot, wore a helmet and did very little other than sit in a daze. As far as I know, his whole life had been that way. Anyway, like I said, he did not talk at all. Made very little noise even, no grunting, moaning, laughing, none of it. But when this man had a seizure, he could speak in clearly articulated, grammatically correct, full sentences. "I would like a hot dog now, please" things like that. Then you have the stroke. Our wonderful child psychiatrist who had a stroke a few months back has recovered greatly (in another state-- booooo)but has not regained everything. Example, he can count as well as anyone when it comes to numbers on just about anything. But he cannot count change. Coins. He cannot add them up. Okay, so like I said, throw eggs at me if this makes me an egghead because I do think it is so interesting!

So I ordered this book, "Clinical Neuroanatomy Made Ridiculously Simple"- - HA, that is really the title so you can see where I might be drawn to it! By Stephan Goldberg, M.D. Since I think most of Genea's problems are in her brain, it seemed like a good idea to understand more about it. I have read so much research and so many books about attachment, bipolar in children, adoption etc and the thousand different problems that can come fully equipped on the child of your choice, and I have a good understanding of the "what" of what goes wrong, and the "why", but nothing on the "where".

Moving right along here, I came across a section about nerve pathways in the spine to the brain and here is what I found that was interesting- there are different paths for different nerves. There are 3 nerves that travel and cross over into the brain at a specific spot together. Those 3 pathways handle the specific information that Genea struggles mightily with every day, and there they are, climbing the jungle gym together! They are the main sensory systems here:

Pain- temperature. Feeling too much pain, or not enough. Feeling too hot, too cold, or disproportionate to the actual climate. Like sweating when it is 60 degrees out. Genea doesn't feel it when she gets overheated from too much activity, she just keeps burning and burning until she is physically stopped (well not that much anymore but for sure used to be that way) Genea only gets cold in extreme temperatures. She does not feel pain unless she really knocks herself into something, hard.

Proprioceptive- stereogenesis. Feeling where your body is in space, such as you know where your wrist is without looking for it. Stereogenesis is being able to tell what something is only by touching it. Genea is extremely awkward, clumsy and clutzy and I have often thought she looks like she does not know where her body is compared to where the furniture is. I don't know about her stereogenesis, I keep forgetting to check on it.

Light touch. Obvious what that is, but I never knew it was routed to the brain separately from medium or strong touch, or that it is connected to the other two pathways above. Genea will flip inside out if you lightly pat her arm or gently tousle her hair. But she will melt in front of you if you rub lotion on her or firmly massage her legs for example. I guess people who are paralyzed can sometimes still feel light touch but not strong touch for this reason.

Okay, so these three all party together (trying to make it interesting) and then twist around right before they shoot into the brain from the thalamus to the cerebral cortex with each other on board. This is what struck me, that the 3 are connected, a team, at this crossover point. That Genea has significant issues in all 3 areas.

SO WHAT DOES THAT MEAN???
I have no idea. But it jumped out at me and screamed.
It fits.

Does anyone have any idea's? If you can see that I misunderstood or got it wrong, let me know that too puuuuh- lease. Maybe everyone already knew this but didn't tell me?

Do other kids have the same combined problems in this area? Can you have a problem with one of these pathways and not the others? It is like having a key without having a locked door. I don't know what I don't know and that is a lot. It just struck me when I was reading- these things are connected. This is a piece. I think.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Rebel... with cause

My phone rang the other day. I am not a big phone talker. I think I used up my lifetime allotment of phone enjoyment from 8th to 10th grade when I could genuinely spend 12 hours talking to my friends. About what? Boys I'm sure. And if I was talking to a boy, it was probably about other boys. Anyway, I didn't recognize the number and let it go, then picked up the message right away. I wasn't doing anything else. Just waiting for effing bleeping Barney to be over so my life could continue.



Turned out it was THE call. The first call from Genea's school. I couldn't believe it. My stomach actually started convulsing like there was a Turbie Twist in there. It was a man mumbling, all I heard was "school liaison officer" and "return this call" and I am thinking, what the hell grade school has a police officer stationed in it? Oh great, the answer is my kids grade school! Let me tell you, nothing scrapes the "adult" off you faster than a call from the school. Suddenly, I am a teenager back in high school and in trouble for something I most likely did.



My first reaction is, omg, what on earth could she have done??? Something really bad of course, or the teacher would have called. Or the principal. Running through my mental list of Genea's known offences and potentially illegal activity, all I can think of is she must have stolen something expensive. She could have hit someone, but quite frankly if she were driven to that extent, well, the recipient would have been deserving.



My hands are shaking, literally shaking, and not from too much coffee. I felt genuinely nervous making the call back, which I did right away. Here is what happened. The officer told me that Genea was driven around the building to be dropped off at her entrance door for the start of school. When asked, Genea reported it was her Daddy that drove around. Driving around the school is not permitted as established by all the huge freaking signs everywhere and oh yeah, the blockades. But the officer was nice about it, and said Genea's Daddy probably just did not notice all the flashing lights, signs and machine gun toting service personnel (no not really but it adds to the story, ya' know) and cement barricades.



There you have it. Our first, dreaded call from the school was about Genea's Daddy. Breaking the rules. His excuse was he was late. Yeah.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Too True Tues #8

Wow, there have been 8 of these now! I want to let everyone know that I got to read every one's posts last time, but because I was out of town and on an alien computer, may not have gotten the chance to comment. But they were all great- hilarious how many people said they would either buy a new house/ vacation home, or pay someone to clean the house they have LOL!

This week I have a funny story, so I am going to wrap TTT around it. The topic is... a funny or embarrassing story where your kids have been the funny and you were the embarrassed.

This story did not happen to me. *ahem* It happened to some poor woman at the airport when we were on our trip last week. We'll call her, Some Poor Woman and just abbreviate SPW. She had a small child with her, about 4 years old and I believe her name was Schmeena. Yes, that sounds right. Schmeena.

So I guess that SPW must have been trying to relax for a single solitary freaking second when her daughter probably noticed and piped up that she needed to GO POTTY NOW! Then I am guessing, her other daughter piped up and said ME TOO, because her older daughter ALWAYS has to go as soon as her sister has to go. SPW was (apparently) so hopped up on Starbucks that the last time she peed, she actually could feel more pee processing and on its way as she was eliminating the original pee. That is a lot of Starbucks but folks, SPW was desperate, tired, and wishing she had an illegal drug habit. So she dragged her weary ass up off the crummy, crusty airport furniture, where she just wanted to rest for a second, to take Schmeena to the crummy crusty airport potty.

(Actually, O'Hare has awesome potties with rotating automatic plastic seat covers and you never have to touch anything with your hands so I am not sure what SPW was so bitchy about).

Anyway, in the teeny potty room, SPW let her daughter Schmeena go first of course. SPW realized that she had another shot of Starbucks refunding and decided to go potty too. As SPW was positioning herself and Schmeena was supposed to be paying attention to her own clothes, everyone in the bathroom, in O'Hare airport, and quite possibly all of Chicago heard Schmeena exclaiming at the top of her very loud little voice....

"Look Mama!!!! You have HAIR on your BUTT!!!!"
I can hear that poor SPW hissing at her child "be quiet! please! be quiet" to which the child replied....
"Why Mama? You didn't know you had hair on your butt?"
That poor SPW began to beg..... "please Schmeena please, yes I know, we just don't need to talk about it right now" at which point Schmeena stage whispered...... "Does all big people have hair on their butts?"
I can only imagine SPW trying to finish her potty and regain her clothing and composure without Schmeena commenting further. I have to imagine it, because like I said, this happened to Some Poor Woman and not me.

If that ever happens to me, I'll be more prepared. Maybe get me a Brazilian!

So there you go. TTT#8 is a funny story where your kids embarassed you. Or maybe Some Other Poor Woman. Here is the linky business:



Go forth and embarass!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Questions, incessant unending questions....


One of the first times I realized Genea might be having more than transitional issues, is when I read about RAD and the inclination to chatter incessantly. Nonsense question after nonsense question. AHA! Went my brain- we have that!
Of course, most children go through a stage where they appear physically unable to stop their lips from flapping like pancakes. It begins to feel like someone is slapping you up the side of your skull after a bit. *Smack* Smack* Smack* and your head is going *thud *thud* thud* and all you want to do is scream shuuuuuuuuuuuut uuuuuuuuuuuup! But, you can scream shut up all you want because it will not make a lick of difference. Yammer yammer.
I realized one day that there was an identifiable difference between Teena's unending senseless chatter and Genea's unending senseless chatter. Genea could stop. Without bribing and without threatening, if I told them to go sit on different couches and be quiet, Genea could do it, Teena could not. So I began to think, hmmmm, this appears to something she is far more in control of than I would have guessed.
Lately, Genea has been on a nonsense question streak. It always starts with Mama? Can I ask you a nonsense question? So it is a two for one. And the nonsense question is almost always a "no" answer. And I hate it. I feel like I am rejecting her 95 times a day because she asks these questions all day long and maybe 5 of them I can squeeze a yes into. I am being set up, 100 times a day and 95 of those times I am being directly led to a negative. It used to be that every. single. one. of the questions that was a "no" led immediately to the Wango Tango. That thankfully has lessened considerably. THANKfully.
I think this is Genea's way of connecting with me and her Daddy. If we are being forced into engaging with her, she is alive. She exists if we look at her and respond. She is not invisible or being ignored when she is hungry or needs a hug. She has someone who might take care of her if she can just force that person to acknowledge her in some way, any way. That is my opinion anyhow, I think it is an orphanage holdover.
A few months ago, I started answering a nonsense question with a nonsense question of my own. I have 2. I reply with "Is it dark outside?" when it is light, or vice versa or for some variety I might say "Is your hair purple?", both of which make her think, then say no, then she moves on. This has been moderately successful as it cuts waaaaaay down on the Wango Tango one can enjoy if one responds with "no" too many times.
So yesterday she came home and her friend had been absent from school. She asked if she could have some candy to make herself feel better (thanks you- know- who). Of course I said, no. We don't do snacks after school. I found last year that Genea would not eat her lunch (that costs 2 freaking dollars) if she had a snack to rely on, but absolutely would eat her lunch if she knew that was all she would get until dinner (rigid thinking ya' think?). A few minutes later she asked again. My phone rang, she asked could she get it for me (always no) and asked who it was before I even answered (again, not permitted and forcing my attention to her instead of the call). So I decided to try something I had been thinking about.
I pulled out a jar of these connecting blocks, as seen above, and counted out 14. Those 14 would be the number of nonsense questions she could ask for the rest of the day and when they were gone, no more questions. Regular necessary questions did not count, though only I would determine what was necessary and not. I thought, 14 nonsense question would leave her without any more questions right around 7:00, as it would be 5:00 when we started this, and she goes to bed around 8. See how I think these things through? So I could make my point and there would be a minimum of suffering. I just wanted her to get a sense of how often she really does this. How often she makes up a question just for attention. Just sheerly for the sake of making her Daddy or I stop what we are doing, shift our attention, engage and communicate and then create a negative atmosphere when we have to say "no" to something she did not want or need anyway. There would be no consequences and no rewards, nothing at all. Just to see.
She bawled. But she understood.
The picture on top is how many she started with yesterday. Yes, there are only 13 in the picture, I took it after she lost the first one.



It is now 3:00 on Saturday. We started yesterday.
She clearly has waaaay- haaay- ayyyyy more control over this than I EVER would have thought.

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