Thursday, December 31, 2009

What did you do to bring in the New Year?



While many took the time to give thanks to God for the passing new year, or dolled up for a night out at the bar/club, my new year started early and was enjoyable all around.

I have not went out to celebrate bringing in the New Year for 10 years now, instead, I make sure to give my phone number to friends and family so that they can call me should they decide to drink while they party in the New Year.  For me, this day started a bit earlier than normal, I woke at 5a.m. to take hubby to the airport, (he is the best man in his close friends wedding..)  He appeared to be down about me not being able to tag along but he's a big boy, he'll be fine :-)  One of my good friends came down from New York with her two boys for a mini vacation.  We met up with some ladies we both worked with at our last place of business and had dinner, did some grocery shopping and then headed home for the night.  We enjoyed the warmth of the house, the sound of the kids playing in the other room, television, and talking of the old times as well as new.  Talking made reflect over the year that was slowly coming to a close.

Unfortunately for me, I missed the first 6 months of it... well not really missed, I wasn't home to enjoy the first part of the year with my family.  I was on a 6 month deployment onboard USS Dwight D Eisenhower...  I guess you could say I was with my "extended" family.  During this time I made new friends with some of the young ladies on the ship who are complete opposites of me~ knowing them has helped me become a more rounded person.  My job as drug and alcohol advisor helped me overcame my fear of speaking in public, I also found that I had a part in the decision of many young people on their choice to drink alcohol and the importance of being responsible adults and making good decicisions when it came to drugs, alcohol, careers, school, relationships... when i think about it, I spent those six months being a good co-worker, mentor, and all around friend to many, that is a good feeling (I'm smiling)

The last 6 months of the year have been the biggest challenge for me yet.  I am home... home to stay.  I have learned that time with family is such a precious gift.  The days, months, and years lost can not be retrieved but I'm lucky to play catch up.  I've found that my 15 y/o still has alot to learn about what happens outside the comfort of his home inside of our quaint section of Western Branch.  Spending time with him has given me the inside scoop of his love for Anime, trading cards, dueling games, and video games... dislikes school to the point he won't put for the effort to even try.  Being home has given me the chance to dig deep with him, ask questions, help him understand the importance of not giving up, trying harder even when you don't think you can succeed.  I found low self esteem and the need to be accepted, I am thankful to be home at a time when he really needs a mom around to guide him in the right direction.  I have learned that my 4 y/o never runs out of energy, has somewhat of a temper, very sacarstic (for 4) and loves Tom and Jerry almost more than mom.  He showers me with hugs, kisses, and I love you's. 4 y/o was completly aware of my absence from home, I can hear when he wakes in the middle of the night, his footsteps as he run from his room to the living room, the sound of the curtains being pulled back, possibly looking to see if moms truck has disappeared only to return days, weeks, possibly months later.  When I wake in the middle of the night for a bathroom break, he grabs me by the arm and says "don't go to the sea mom" which tells me he is afraid that my presence home is only temporary and soon to end.  I know my husband truely appreciates and loves me.  He appears happy to have me home and is supportive of the many ideas i have come up with over the last few months in an effort to work from home since I retired... he loves to work out, is concerned about the health of our family and wants to make sure we are all comfortable and safe, He continues to explain to 15 y/o that he may not understand any of the speeches but he will appreciate the lessons when he is older (15 y/o still responds with rolling eyes).  I loved reconnecting with my sister and enjoy our quick chats and short text to one another.  I enjoy my talks with my cousin Tommy as he tries to convince me to drive trucks for a living.  I have enjoyed visiting foreign countries, volunteer work while learning the culture around me in the countries I have visited,  and meeting my husband in Portugal for my last stop of my naval tour.  I ended my 2009 in the company of my friend Sam and the sound of young children at play and HGTV in the background.  I finished my last book of the year, posted my last blog, and finished the night off with two calls from hubby wishing me a happy new year... Another safe new year has past, and the new one lays ahead.

Good-bye 2009, Hello 2010.  May you all have a safe, healthy, and Happy New Year filled with new hopes, new opportunities, and new beginnings.  Enjoy family and friends, and all that life has to offer.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Day after Christmas



Quiet day, temp holding at a cool 54 degrees- dry after a rainy Christmas day. 
I guess many people wake up super early on Christmas day to open gifts... Not us, we had already discussed how this holiday, we would focus more on the reason than the gifts.  4 y/o was the first to wake at about 7:42am, he whined about missing Tom and Jerry on Boomerang and then said he was going into the front room to watch television.  He came back and informed us that there were gifts under the tree and if it was okay to open them.  We got out of bed to help him find his gifts.  15 y/o asked for a new game system and a new cell phone, his grades prevented  him from getting either.  I decided to give him money to put in his bank account so that he can buy his system of choice (and phone) when his grades improved.  I also gave him the second season of his favorite anime, Bleach, that he seemed really excited about.  On 4 y/o's list he requested a monster truck with a remote, a bubble wand (bubbles), and wings to fly so he could find me when I left him home alone with daddy.  The first thing he opened was his monster truck- his exact words- "THIS IS THE BEST CHRISTMAS EVER!", since I couldn't find wings I got him the Leap Frog reading system to help him find a fun way to learn to read (because he refuses to do it...), when he opened his bubbles the only thing he wanted to do was go outside.  He dressed himself in sweats and a to small sweatshirt and waited for me to take him outside.  As I stood at the front door (inside) I watched him blow bubbles in the cold wet air, no cares no worries, wet fingers and clothes, red ears and red nose... I only saw pure enjoyment in something as small and entertaining in his 2 dollar bottle of bubbles.  who would have known?  Known that it doesn't take hundreds of dollars to make a child happy on a day as special as Christmas.  Later in the evening I cooked a small dinner for my family of 4 plus 3: smoked ham, baked mac & cheese, garlic mash potatoes, whole wheat bread, green beans wrapped in bacon sprinkled with brown sugar (ummmm, thanks for the recipe Belva!).  We enjoyed quiet conversation and laughter and 4 y/o thanked Santa one more time for his "monster truck remote" and his special bubble wand~ who knew...

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Eve..



It's finally here.  4 y/o has asked from the last day of November "is it Christmas yet?" to which i have to constantly remind him "no, it is the holiday season" 

In the mind of a 4 y/o decorated trees, lights, and santa in every mall represents Christmas... and everyday IS Christmas... Let's not forget to make sure each of us explains to our 4 y/o (and older) the true meaning of this upoming day.  This day of rejoicement, the birth of our king, our father. 

In the past my tree was filled with gifts for the season, this year, we limited gifts to the bare minimum... The meaning has gotten lost over the years and it seems more important to us to help them understand this time of year is not about who gets what or what cost the most but, why we celebrate.

Happy Holiday Everyone.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

The $140 dollar holiday dress



That was the regular price for a simple black dress... I paid exactly $24.98 for it!

I'm not the shopper I use to be, I remember back in the day when the only responsibility I had was- who am I kidding- I wasn't very responsible back in the day.  When I lived in Georgia, it didn't take much for me to go out and spend almost a whole paycheck on clothing for partying in either Jacksonville or Savannah.  All someone had to say is "Hey this weekend a few of us are going to.... are you in?"  My answer was always "yes" and a new outfit (or two would follow)

When I moved to Virginia, I didn't shop as much but I still spent my share of dollars on unneeded items.  When I met one of my closest friends,  Kimy, the two of us would spend hours out and about in stores buying items we really didn't need but looked good on us when we hit the clubs for the night.

Now a days,  if it can be found online and the shipping is free, I'll purchase it.  Mainly because the stores are so crowded and the choices for boys seem limited and few... Did you notice I said for 'boys'?  I don't do much shopping for myself anymore, I have a ton of clothes (some still with tags) that I don't wear, mainly because I have spent the last 5 years away from home at sea on a ship.  My clothing options were limited overseas.  I either wore a uniform or the "required" civilian clothes if we hit a foreign port which normally consisted of jeans or khaki pants and a polo shirt~ no shorts, skirts, tank tops, or anything that made you fit into the culture in anyway... I didn't understand this part of the deal, we were constantly reminded about what we could wear and the importance of blending in... We normally stuck out like a pink elephant in a green field, but we were ambassadors of the United States, so we followed the rules and stayed out of trouble...  okay... what was I talking about again???

OH! the $140 dress...

As I stated, I do not like to shop as much as I use to but I had to actually get out to the stores to find a dress for a holiday party I will be attending.  I found 3 dresses that were all on sale with prices ranging from $49 to $127, the one I liked cost $79, the alternate $99.  I sent a picture of me in each dress to hubby for his opinion, later that night he told me which dress he liked.  Today I went to buy the dress and like all good sales, it was gone (so was my second choice)  bummed, i took a walk into Macy's, walked by a rack that said "one day sale" ($24.00)  kept walking, stopped and looked at about 20 dresses, didn't find what I wanted.  As I walked back by the "one day sale" rack for $24, I decided~ can't hurt...

Well what do you know, my alternate dress is on this rack... IN A SIZE 6!!!! I am so excited make my purchase and head home.  as I take the dress out of the bag I notice the original price is $140~ whoa!  that's one heck of a sale I stumbled into!!  I got an awesome black dress for 24 bucks, and I can actually wear it again on a day that doesn't have the word "holiday" in it!!!  I'm really getting into this saving and sale thing..

Monday, December 14, 2009

the plan for today...

Was to clean house and relax with a good book.  As we all have found in life, plans don't always go as PLANNED!  Although I did get to sleep in, 4 y/o (aka- my alarm clock) stayed up late waiting for me to go to bed last night and ended up sleeping in past 9~ this never happens!  he normally wakes me at about 6:30 am requesting "oatmeal mommy! now!" yea, just like that... no "can you please..", "mom can you make...." none of that.. it's what we call the oatmeal demand... it sucks but you don't want to keep laying in bed because the phrase will continue until you pry yourself out of bed, cover him up IN your bed, and walk to the kitchen to make him oatmeal... WITH orange juice!

after oatmeal, and lunch of hotdogs and mac & cheese, I settle down with my book, 4 y/o puts on a movie, and 14 y/o heads to his room to read.  at about 4:28 I get a phone call from a friend I had planned to visit today (and completely forgot) As I answered I started with... "I am sorry, I forgot we were suppose to meet up today!"  and then launch into how are you doing... etc.. she says okay but I can hear that things are not okay by the sound of her voice~ she asks if i could come now... she needs me.  I tell her to give me 30 minutes, throw on some sweats, convince 4 y/o we need to take a ride, ask 14 y/o if he wants to go ("no") and run out in the cold rain to find out what's going on.



4 hours and about 32 minutes later, we have talked, tried to find understanding, voiced concerns, and cried over infidelity of those we put trust and love in.  I don't give advise on relationships (ever) I feel that when a decision is made about where to go in a relationship, the only person who should make it... is the person who has the problem.  I don't ever want to be the one who says "leave" when things could have been fixed by conversation, therapy, God...  I have always felt that what ever happens in relationships "happens" we can't control what direction they go, how long they last, or even if they will ever get off the ground!  I have said numerous times that I have been blessed to have my husband in my life.  We met in 97.. in 98 he moved back to Texas... dated other women, lived his life the way he wanted, and called and asked "do you want to know where I am" one day.  Almost a year later we moved in together... a year after that we were married...  2 years later we were separated... now we are going into 10 years of marriage and make it a habit of talking to each other daily, spending time with each other daily, spending time alone weekly, and not forgetting the importance of respecting one another as well as our promise to God. 

In the end I think my friend will make the right decision on what direction to go with her relationship.  When you are known to be the strong person, it hurts to have someone see you cry.  Friend, I still think you are strong... It takes a strong person to call and say "i need you" and it takes a true friend to say "I'm on my way"

Saturday, December 12, 2009

my day was... how about yours???

Once again I find myself bored, every time hubby leaves to go out of town, I find myself cleaning, cleaning, painting, cleaning, watching HGTV non stop, cleaning, etc....

today we started our Saturday the way we normaly do.  Swim lessons for 4 y/o bright and early, the ones we keep paying for in hopes that one day he will actually participate~ that kid is stubborn, after swim lessons he asked (non stop) that I make a trip to Dunkin Doughnuts, I want coffee, so I make the stop.  We get coffee, doughnuts with sprinkles and somewhere between me telling him to stay close and don't touch, a strawberry milk is added to my final bill~ oh well, at least it'll taste good with his doughnuts.

Arrive home, give 4 y/o a bath, yell at 15 y/o for being in bed at 11am, clean house, call hubby, make lunch, and then head out the door for a craft show they are having at the YMCA.  While we are there 4 y/o ask if we can go to Chucky Cheese's.  I give in, stop by the house to pick up a book to read, and head over to kid haven... As always it is filled with screaming (big) kids running so fast they can't stop in time to avoid the smaller kids who are trying to enjoy themselves.  wait a minute...

I thought this place was suppose to be for KIDS... it has changed since the last time I step through the door (for another unpleasant birthday party with an oversized rat... oh sorry, mouse) whoa~ they need a new sign out side that says "dress code rating: R" (intechangable according to the type of mom currently in the house)  the current group of moms are seriously under dressed for for a place "where a kid can be a kid".  I kind of feel like I'm in a party place that is intended for the "grown and sexy" giant slide, games, pizza, and cake included... this is so not cool for my 15 y/o who can't even concentrate on any games because the girl (with her 2 y/o son?) is bending over the mole hole showing all of her goodies in her super short skirt that appears to have been purchased out of the little girls department.  We get our pizza to go, 4 y/o screams "this is not fair"... at the same time 15 y/o says "I don't understand why he can't stay there and play for awhile, I mean it IS for for kids afterall"..... (hmmmm)

We bring our pizza home, eat, and watch Aliens VS Monsters (good movie) after movie time, 4 y/o gets on the computer for some computer time, 15 y/o takes his stephen king book into his room with him and closes the door, and I stand in the kitchen looking for something to snack on (need to go grocery shopping)  I look in my hall closet for something to do... there are a some beading items in my closet that were purchased but never used (need some lessons), I pull the items out and sit at my dining room table... in the end I come up with a few pairs of earrings I am excited about wearing (pictured below)

I tried to do the coil around the beads... already purchased was easier!

I love red, I think I'll make more red ear rings!!!

my first try at doing a coil.. uneven but I think these are nice...

another favorite... need to to this in red... and brown.. ooo green too!

This is the very first pair of ear rings I ever made~ not bad for a first timer with no classes huh!!!

4 y/o wants me to watch Boomerang with him.. (he loves old cartoons) I guess I'll call it a night.. this has been a long day, glad hubby will be back tomorrow!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Appliance happiness



Playing part time mom/wife for the last 10+ years has somewhat separated me from the reality of what is known to some as "domesticated bliss" not to mention I am NOWHERE near the domestic goddess I had imagined myself to be...

A new appliance in my house was like "whatever" to me, I usually didn't have a choice in the selection (because I was somewhere over seas or in the middle of it) and I only used it "occassionally" IF I was up to cleaning or cooking when I would come home for my short visits..

Hubby and I went into Lowe's about 2 weeks ago to purchase a new stove (that we didn't need in my opinion)... Once we (translated to: he) started looking at stoves, Bob, the awesome appliance guy, mentioned "We have a great deal on front load washer and dryers if you need one of those..."  I said no.... hubby walked away with Bob to take a look, he was in awe to find the Whirlpool and Maytag front load washers were on sale for $889... BOTH PIECES! 

In my mind, I didn't need a new washer and dryer (or stove)... the ones I have still works good!

washer and dryers are purchased... stove is purchased the day after for $300 off plus a 10% military discount= $677.34

Initially, I didn't really care about the stove, then it was in my kitchen...

"oh what a beautiful stove it is!" I sang as I looked at it, nothing expensive or grand (like the viking ranges I have adored since the age of 25) but it is beautiful and looks so sleek and updated compared to the uneven range with the pans that didn't fit no matter where we brought them or how many times we replaced them to make the burners fit the way they are suppose to...

I tore into the book to find, it recommended you use certain types of pots and pans on this glass top rang... every pan I own is JUST the opposite of what it recommends in the use and care guide... "I need new pans" I tell hubby.  He sends me two emails and says "check your mail"  There are two coupons in my box, a 25% off from Macy's and a 20% from JC Penny.  I print both and head to the mall.... 2 hours later and non stop conversation with 2 different women, I come home with my 18 piece set of pots/pans~ regular price $499... on sale for $299... plus my 20% off coupon = $251.99.

As soon as I got home I tore into my new pots and pans, washed them in warm soapy water (that's what the instructions said to do!) and started dinner on my new stove... Who would have thought one person (me) could ever be this excited about something as simple as a stove... not me!

Friday, December 4, 2009

I'm happy..



It is about 10:55pm and I am waiting patiently for hubby to return home from setting up a network for a local copany in the area.  4 y/o kept asking where daddy was and finally asked if he could call daddy.

"daddy, where are you?  it's dark and mommy is ready for bed"
    "I'm at work bubba, is everything okay?"
"yes, mommy is ready to go to sleep, are you on your way home?"
    "I'll be home in about an hour or so"
"okay daddy, here's mommy"

I feel so lucky..., happy.... I can't stop smiling to myself.  I have been blessed with one of Gods sweetest treasures.  He is patient with the fact that I don't work, took care of our kids while I was away for the last four years, and loves me~ even if I'm not shapely with long flowing hair and fair skin.  I am truley blessed.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Creative Side

For those who did not know, I have what some may call a creative side.  It normally does not surface until I find something that I really like (and it cost a fortune).  Christmas wreaths for example, now a days, one will cost you anywhere from $35 - $60 bucks... I love when they have the 20% off sticker on the ones that cost in the upper 60's~

isn't it weird how when we see something that says 20% (or more) off we can't help but to buy it?  No matter that it cost 70buck.... "It's 20% off!!!"

That is how I felt when I went to buy a wreath to go over my fireplace a few days ago.  As I looked at all the pretty colors, ribbons, and ornaments that adorned many, the fact that they all cost 45 bucks was over shadowed by the 20% off sticker.  After about 30 minutes or so, I decided I needed the red one with the poinsettas and the red bow.  I picked up my selection with a smile on my face (I was getting 20% off!) and headed to the already long line.  As I waited, and continued to eye all the other wreaths, I started to second guess my decision...

maybe the one with the different ornaments is the one I want, oooo~ the blue looks really good, I haven't done blue in awhile... Oh my goodness! they have purple! Landon loooves purple! 

The more I looked the more my mind started to spin and then suddenly I thought... 'why am I buying this?? I can make the one I want with flowers AND ornaments for less than $45 (+20% off...) after my 24 minute wait in line, I put my wreath back and headed to Michaels... What do you know~ Michael's has small wreaths for 2 bucks and larger ones for 3..

I pick a large one and a small one.  total cost... $5.  

I drove to my house to plan out a simple design, I look through my holiday decoration boxes and found several different sized ornaments in gold, blue, red, silver, and green.. I choose the red, it feels more festive... 'Oh look~ there are a few white and red poinsettas in here!!!' I take all the items and put them in a box on the table. 

Two days later, after finishing my housework, I pour all the items out of the box onto my dining room table... about an hour or more later, I hang my home made wreath over my fireplace.   take a step back, and smile... I like this~ simple, quick, and just enough to catch the eye. (pictured below)




total cost: $3.00 (I only made the large wreath... had to get dinner started!)

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Decorate the tree?



My tree is no longer the beautiful tree with the glass ornaments, ribbons, and bright white lights I have come to love and attach to my post cards.  It is now covered in plastic ornaments of all shapes sizes and colors, unbreakable, and good enough to use as necessary for a quick game of baseball by my 4 y/o. 
This year, tree decorating was left to him, I pulled out my plastic box of decorations and let him have at it, little did i know he would use every single ornament in the box along with some others that he found in a bag in the closet!  While hubby, 15 y/o, and I spent the day outside raking leaves and cleaning out the flower beds, 4 y/o sang himself a song as he hung decorations on the tree... Any time i came in to check on him he ran me out of the room.  He said he would come get me when he was done, he did request a boost from hubby for a few of the places he could not reach at the top but my job was to "stay out".... so I did~




When I finally got the okay to come in to view his work, i was in awe~ there are about 200 ornaments on that tree! 4 y/o had dragged a chair in the room so that he could reach the higher parts of the tree and utilized hubby for the areas that were higher than the chair could reach.  My job was to add hooks to all the ornaments that could not be hung (so that they may be put on the already crowded tree)  Hubby wants to know if I am going to make an attempt to fix the tree after 4 y/o is in bed but.... Kids are very observant and I guarentee this 4 y/o will notice if some of his hard work has disappeared from the tree... I'm just glad he took the time to do the work for me while I concentrated on the leaves piling up in the yard!



Monday, November 23, 2009

Visit to my 15 y/o class..


If you ever want to know what your kid is up to in school...  show up to class one day~ UNEXPECTED... that's what I did.  The look on my 15y/olds face was classic (not to mention funny!)

15 y/o seems to have a problem completing classwork so I took it upon myself (after talking to my friend Angela during dinner at the Melting Pot one night) to stop by the school and hang out in his class.  First class is math, located in hallway "I"... 

There are there are 13 students in the class, 9 boys, wait... 10 boys, one kid who was dressed in all black with house shoes and really long hair actually answered to the name Shaquaun which leads me to believe he is not one of the "4" girls who I originally thought were in my 15 y/olds class.  There is a redhead who does more talking than the teacher, a wanna be beauty queen who had convinced the guy next to her to give up his math book so she can complete her assignment (because she left her book at home) and a third girl who was really tall and seemed a bit intimidating to the other 12 kids in the class~ so no one really bothered her to much.  The math teacher did her part (teaching) even though none of the kids really paid attention, well the kid with the full beard and mustache seemed interested in the lesson (15 y/o pretended he was because he saw me walk in and have a seat).  There was one kid who seemed a bit older and smarter than the rest, he sat in the very back of the class didn't even bother to pay attention to what was being said as he read Sista Souljah's Midnight: A Gangster Love Story... and then there was Christian, a mixed kid with a really big afro, who spent a majority of the class time talking to anyone who would listen and stating "I love you Mrs. such and such" every time he was scolded for getting to loud, touching everything in sight, or interrupting the teacher as she tried to give her lesson which led me to believe that Christian is actually ADHD or something~  15 y/o didn't talk much although the kid in the back of the class who was reading Sister Souljah took time out from his book to yell "I bet Ced will get his classwork done today!" (...giggles from the class~ kid goes right back to reading his book..)

From Math, I go to English.  This teacher is nothing like the first, when she speaks all listen... I like her.  looks like many of the same kids are in this class as well, once everyone gets settled in she ask for homework (15 y/o doesn't have his...) and then she starts her lesson~ all eyes are on her.... Kid from the other class, who read Sister Souljah in Math, shows up about 5 minutes late doesn't bother to sit, just informs English teacher he will no longer be in her class he has a schedule change, turns in his homework assignment from yesterday, textbook, and then says peace out to the students as he walks back out the door as quietly as he walked in... Christian is here (still talking) as is the redhead (who out talks Christian)... The tall girl makes the roll call but the beauty queen is replaced by an alternate who has really shiney lips and hair dyed two different colors, her attitude is almost as prissy as the other queen but we can definately tell who the real queen is in "I" hallway.  I sit in the back next to "Shaquaun" (with his long hair and house shoes...) I am tempted to ask why his hair is longer than any woman I know, not to mention, what the hell is he doing wearing house shoes to school.... but he is not my 15 y/o and I am not there for him.  There are only 12 students in this class and even though 15 y/o doesn't participate in the class discussion or take any notes, he manages to rip the brand new eraser from the top of his pencil into a million little pieces.  Before they head out for lunch Shaquan makes it his business to point out "Cedric never turns in classwork"

"Thanks Shaquan~ that's why I am here..."


I didn't stay for the whole class because my 5 hours of daycare were quickly coming into "pay extra" time so I had to cut class short and head out to pick up 4 y/o so that he could cry about why he needs skittles and orange juice from the Kroger located right next to his daycare (a daily argument) but you better believe I will be heading back to that school on occassion to see how things are going and to make sure 15 y/o has a game plan that clearly matches mine when it comes to turning in classwork and homework, not to mention passing the 9th grade.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

laptops, and t.v's, and games, oh my!


With no electricity I have found one thing out.  The everyday activities of my family do not really include each other! for example, I stay at home all day, not just lounging~  I clean, drop off the kids at daycare/school, work out, prepare dinner, search for a job, write and rewrite my resume, pick up the kids, cook dinner, do bath time, story time, then bed time.  My husband and the kids are pretty much out of the house until 4, after that Hubby goes to the gym, Landon in the living room for t.v time, and Cedric locks himself in his room.  After dinner, Ced disappears back into his room, Landon uses the computer to play games, and Hubby jumps on his laptop.  I sit on the couch and read a book or fall asleep.
Now that we have no electricity (bad storm came throught and knocked down a few power lines) we have all spent the last 2 days in the same room.  Before Hubby got the generator working (it's been sitting idle since we had to use it during the 2003 hurricain) we relaxed by candle light althought it made me nervous having 4 year old Landon.  Once the generator was up and running we limited it's use to the light in the main living area, and the refridgerator.  With no t.v. or laptops for games we have all snuggled up in this one room and actually TALKED to each other, we pilled into the car in the pouring rain and drove about 30 miles to our favorite restaraunt, only to turn around and come right back home because there was a 45 minute wait.  Normally someone would complain but this time we shrugged our shoulders and said "oh, well" ordered a pizza from the neighborhood pizza spot, picked it up on the way home.  We even went as far as to pulling out a board game... AND PLAYING IT! I believe we found how much we enjoy the company of one another. I must add REAL "family" time into our weekly schedule, it's whats been missing in our lives...

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Can you feed a family of 6 for $4 a week?

Kathy Spencer of Massachusetts can!  If i didn't see the story on Good Morning America today, I wouldn't believe it either.  This mother of 4 has mastered the art of using coupons (hey, this my own personal opinion!)  She is able to shop to feed her family of 6 by only buying what is free or close to free, how you ask? (because I did) It starts with her sitting down once a week scanning for coupons in newspapers, circulars, and online.

The first tip she shares is for you to check your stores policy on using multiple coupons for the same order... to show how this worked, she showed 7 coupons for $1 off fresh seafood, instead of buying 4lbs of seafood and getting one dollar off of the final price, she ordered 7 small orders that totaled $1 dollar or less, using her $1 off coupons she automatically saved $7 bucks getting her seafood purchase for.... FREE!

Another tip was to stock pile store credit~  apparently many stores offer store credits in dollar amounts that can be used toward your next shopping trip (reeeally~ how come I haven't heard of this???)  For Kathy, these store credits help cover what coupons don't!

Tip 3, ask the store if any of your coupons can be doubled.  (another lesson I learned)  Many stores will let you double coupons up to 99 cents... this coupon thing is serious!

In the world of t.v magic~ we go from the grocery store and end up in the CVS parking lot... why you ask?  because Kathy uses a tool called the "Extra Care Box" which leads us to tip 4.  Many drugstores will let you combine their store coupon with a manufacturers coupon (just ask!)  by doing this, Kathy purchased a cart full of items that came to a small drugstore total of $79.26 after her coupon discounts, the total was $0.05.... (and scene)

Back in the grocery store, Kathy has finished her shopping and is having her items rung up, the total cost for her groceries, $267.23, after the lady at the register subtracts for the handful of coupons, Kathy's bill comes to a whopping $0.01!  YES, that says 1 cent, a penny, the round copper one many of us step over when we walk down the sidewalk... A PENNY FOR GROCERIES!!!  My mouth fell, my only comment:  "REALLY???"  Diane Sawyer must have been thinking the same thing by the look on her face when the camera went back to the studio.  What did I get from this segment of GMA?  "By only focusing on what you can get for free" (<--- Kathy's words) a person CAN feed a family of 6 for only $4!!!

Priceless tips that I will never take the time to use.... not because it's not worth the time, I"m just to lazy to spend the time looking, asking, and doing!





http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/Parenting/mom-feeds-family-week/story?id=8463295
http://www.workitmom.com/interviews/detail/8393/kathy-spencer-founder-how-to-shop-for-free

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

when should one post a comment on a blog???

I have found that many people write blogs for a number of reasons; to express how they feel, share their views of life, the world, their artistic side, hobbies, etc... which brings to me my question,

when should one post a comment on another's blog?

I figured, if you happen on a blog and enjoy the material inside, you do one of three things; comment, follow, or move on to the next blog.  I did just that... comment, follow, move to the next blog.  There are a few things I have interest in, making gift baskets for my friends, understanding the teenage mind, family, painting, renovating old spaces (well, watching and helping when needed), along with some others I haven't even started yet... 

Last night, as I sat next to hubby and read countless entries written throughout the day, I stumbled on one;  a happy blogger who purchased a house the was once owned by a grandmother, they discussed the memories and how much they enjoyed their youth there, the author has started to renovate the property (pics were included) and it goes on with the details of the renovation...  Stories like this always catch my attention, especially when there is a history behind the renovation, I love to see the beginning stages of a project right to the finished project.. Being a welder, I have always felt a great sense of accomplishment when I started my projects with nothing more than a sheet of metal or missing sections of pipe and could see the end project after a hard 3+ days of work ..  Inspired by this house renovation i left the following comment:

"can't wait to see the end result!" (and requested to follow the progress)

Today the post was deleted with a note that said, "...as proud as i am of it (the house) and the work that I have done, it should really only be shared with my closest friends..."

That makes sense... I guess, on a public site, open for all to see.. no, not really- it actually made me feel like a stalker or something... Does leaving a comment on someones post make you stalker like? does it freak some people out?  do people actually post blogs to be shared with friends ONLY (yet make sure the settings are for all to view)?  I guess many people post but don't want comments added to their page, they probably use this as a place to express who they are, their thoughts, and ideas...

Maybe if someone left me that comment I could have read it as... "can't wait to see the end result... I'll meet you there!!!"  Or, "I can't wait to see the end result... so that I can rob you blind of your ideas!" or "I can't wait to see the end result... so I can move in next door and stalk you daily!"  Did I mention I can follow this person on twitter OR check them out on my space???  HOLY CRAP!  I AM A STALKER! (this info is on the blog btw)

Maybe, I should just get over it and continue to write my daily blah, blah, and all that other stuff... but now I am confused on when to post a comment without making the author feel like their words have been invaded, or maybe stalked, or just plain uncomfortable (or something like that...)

14 y/o



I seem to have lost my way with my 14 y/o.  The first grading period from school brought in 1 C, 2 Ds, and 1 E... (formerly known as the "F")  this is what schools do now adays to keep children from feeling like failures.  The school has set up a system of online grading that gives parents full access to grades earned each week, these grades are updated 2 to 4 times a week for some teachers, once a week for others.  Some of the teachers have all class and homework assignments listed on the site so that parents may view what's due, what was done, and what is coming up in the following weeks. 

Because I have access to this, I am able to see that my 14 y/o has managed to fall from 2 D's to 2 E's and 2 C's, because of this, I do what any parent would do.  Call the school to set up a meeting with the teachers to see what is going on and how we... as a group... can work to fix the problem.  I came out of the meeting feeling a sence of accomplishment with the many alternatives that will my 14 y/o improve and excel this school year... what seemed like a good idea has turned into a joke for him (literally).  I have found him to be the most honest person on earth and all of his teachers are compulsive liers, the way they teach their lessons are confusing (thus 14 y/o doesn't understand ANYthing he has been taught...)  when I asked him if he needed to go into special ed classes (considering EVERY class he has now are the basic fundamental classes) he states, "the classes i have not are not that hard, I just don't understand them.."

He is starting to piss me offt and there is not a day that goes by that he does not make me want to lock him in his room.  Everything is a joke to him, he was asked to do his laundry on Saturday~ it is now Wednesday night and his room smells like dog poo, feet, and old ass.   I asked him to load the dishwasher, he lets the dishes stack up on the sink until I wash them myself.  Today I asked him to rake up the pine needles in the front yard so that I can use them on one of the flower beds... he started at 5 this afternoon... at about 7:30, he was still standing in the middle of the yard with the rake in his hand... Then he has the nerve to say "Can you buy me..."  When I tell him no, he gives me this look like I owe HIM something.  in his mind, his life is so unfair compared to his friends.  His friends are not passing or doing well in school but they all get to go to the party this weekend, doesn't understand that those are not my kids and I don't control what goes on in their house hold.  I'm unfair because he has D's and E's and can't play his playstation or PSP, I'm unfair because he refuses to do his homework so he spends his day in his room instead of watching t.v.  did i mention his teachers are all compulsive liers?  there is a conspiracy against him... 

In 3 years, 14 y/o will turn 18... and will probably NOT graduate...

What does one do with an 18 y/o who has refused to understand that it is time to live on their own?  I left my home 5 months after I graduated from school.  My husband (step-dad) left his home at 17 with a signiture from his parents, Cedric's real dad (loser) still living close to mom, in mom's old house, probably selling drugs for a living and making more babies by as many women as possible paying the bare minimum for child support for each one... 

You know, I remember the time when a person who did not graduate from high school could always find a career in the military.  That is no more, the military has moved from acceptance of all to only taking the qualified person who is willing to work, earn a degree, and motivate others to do the same... McDonalds, great for when you are in high school, cool after high school, even better for someone who has retired and only looking for a couple of hours in their day to make it go by quicker... McDonalds as a career.... I don't know.  Can one do that without a high school diploma or GED?  I really don't think he understands the severity of the future ahead of him. 

He says he wants to be an astronomer~  I don't take his dreams away by reminding him he isn't even passing Earth Science... the most basic of science offered next to special classes- I don't knock him down... I keep the dream alive.  But I do ask why he wants to do this job, he says, "it's not hard work, they only look at stars and study the galaxy..." 14 Y/O!!!  this is what he thinks!!!

I'm just really aggitated, he has no grasp of the reality ahead, the reason he fails is because our rules make him fail, the teachers lie about his work, and he doesn't understand anything they teach.  his life is everyone elses fault, not his.  I'm at a loss, what direction does one go?  can't send him to the worst place ever (his dad) he'll be the biggest loser ever (not in a good lose weight way either!) what ever... the more i type the more pissed off i become...

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

grocery list...


For those who don't know, I am currently trying to figure out what my next move for a career may be.. As of late, my days are spent clearing out the junk I have accumulated over the last 8 years, I drop off and pick up the kids from school and daycare, work on my resume, clean house, search the internet for quick and easy (yet delicious) recipes for the weekly menu (feel free to post some of your quick, easy, & yummy recipes), and track needed items on a shopping list I keep posted on my fridge...

Today Verizon came by to start the installation of the whole Fios thing, it will take 4 to 6 hours to run the cable outside of my house so I figured, why not make the most of this time and go out to do some grocery shopping for the week...

When most people make out their grocery list, they use either a sheet of notebook paper, scrap paper, generate a shopping list online, or use some nifty app provided through what ever phone device they have these days.  My list of choice comes from an app I found for my blackberry.  I made my master list of items I buy when we do our bi-weekly shopping trip, another small list of items that are not used daily but are a part of the weeks menu, and a third list for those items listed on the fridge that we need right now.... 

Once I get to the store, I get my cart, pull out all the coupons needed for the trip, open the list on my handy blackberry, and get to shopping.  Many of the women that shop at the same store have list of some sort; it's either written, typed, on their i-phones, blackberries, laptops.... wait a minute... did i say laptop you ask?  why yes I did!  I actually did a double take when I saw an open laptop in a shopping cart slide in the spot next to me...  My first thought is 'what's the deal with the laptop', my curious (AKA: nosey) side said 'look at it'... so i did, and on this laptop is a grocery list. 

A well organized grocery list with quantities, price comparisons, and cute little pink check off boxes! hmmm... 

Now a days, it's not unusual to take a laptop out and about with you.  I take my laptop when Landon and I go to the indoor play area at the mall, McDonald's play space, or to the park...  I take my laptop to the library when i need complete quiet from the interruptions at home... but I can't seem to recall the last time I took it to the grocer.. When I generate my shopping list on my laptop, I normally just print it off before I walked out the door.  maybe this is a new trend I am not aware of, kind of like wearing a scarf with a short sleeve shirt in the dead of summer, although trendy, it seems a bit odd...

Monday, October 26, 2009

hubby comes home today!

So, I spent the weekend without hubby (with kids) this is something he has done by himself , off and on, for periods of up to 8 months or longer (over a period of 4 years...)  Since I have retired from my first career, I felt it important for him to enjoy every bit of time needed to relax and enjoy time with his friends, motorcycles, garage time, and as always "me" time!  This weekend was friend time, he flew up to Cincinatti to watch Sunday's game with some of the guys from the motorcycle forum.  While he was gone... I was bored, slept like crap which made me super crabby and tired all day, resorted to eating junk (with the kids) vice healty meals he enjoys for me to cooking for him, I did work on my resume... a little... watched the first two seasons of "The Office" a Cake Boss marathon, and read countless blogs right up until the wee hours in the morning.  Well it's Monday~ sweetie will be home at 1 pm.  I am glad to say that he is on his way home... Oh! and he had a really great time!




Scott and Hubby (hubby on the right)

Sunday, October 25, 2009

cake boss...

AWESOME show!

6:33 p.m.

my 4 y/o is looking through the cabinets for a snack (again)
my 14 y/o is doing the same...

"Get out of my way loser" (4 y/o)

      "WHAT DID YOU SAY?"  (14 y/o)

"Get out of my way... LOSER!"  (4 y/o)

     "Oh! I thought you said jerk"  (14 y/o)


ummm, what did I just miss??? Is being called a jerk worse than being called a loser?  both words are pretty mean......

my morning so far...

~ 6:15 am, was waken by an angry 4 year old who said his eyes were burning because i fell asleep with the tv on last night...
~ can't sleep angry 4 y/o wants oatmeal... "right now!"
~make oatmeal
~pour orange juice
~make coffee
~turn on "monster house" movie for angry 4 y/o
~fall asleep on the couch while 4 y/o watches movie
~wake up to not so angry 4 y/o who needs kisses
~4 y/o asks for a hotdog
~4 y/o asks for a snack
~4 y/o asks for a glass of milk
~4 y/o asks to go to the park
~4 y/o screams when I say "no, it's raining"
~4 y/o wants to watch Tom & Jerry
~turn on Tom & Jerry DVD for 4 y/o
~call hubby to see how tailgate party is going up in Cincinatti
~hang up jealous because I'm not there
~take another nap while 4 y/o lays next to me on the couch and watches Bugs Bunny
~wake up, brush teeth again, blog

Friday, October 23, 2009

I"m sick..



Three days ago Landon did not want to wake up.  His skin and it was so hot to the touch, upon taking his temperature (102.2) it was official he was not going to daycare, I was not going to my effective resume writing class, and he was pretty unhappy that I had to wake him up take his temperature.

I gave him a cool bath, tried to feed him, and let him relax for the rest of the day.  there was more sleeping than relaxing, which i didn't complain about.  This gave me the opportunity to get alot of work completed in the house with out having to rush out the door to pick him up from day care.  For the first time, the house was together and dinner was cooked and ready to serve when Lonnie came home from the gym.... this does not happen to often.

Day two the fever fell to 100.2, much better a little more moving around.  I was able to actually get him to put some food in his stomach, offered water he cried for gateraide, hubby said this was okay. so I got gatoraid... red...  A bit more moving, watching television today... definatey feeling a bit better.

Day three... we officially broke 99 degrees!  although he keeps telling me he is not feeling well he has o problem asking me to stop by Kroger for skittles...  I get skittles and he enjoys them on our ride out to the garden center to buy plants for te front of the house.  He is so helpful sticking by the cart, helping me push it, and not running away from me getting lost among the maze of shrubs, flowers, and trees offered at the center.

Today he woke up and said he felt horrible and could not go to daycare.  After taking his temperature and it reading 98.6, I tell him we will have to go see the doctor at the hospital to which he replies, "I don't feel that bad but my body hurts mommy"  This may be true, he has spent the first 3 days in bed.  we go to a meeting with my oldest son's teachers at the high school, I bribe him with the wonderful taste of sprinkled dougnuts from Dunkin Doughtnuts if he is able to sit still for the meeting.  I think he may still be getting over his fever because he manages to sit still... FOR 45 MINUTES!!!

We make our trip to DD, come home and he relaxes for about 3 hours while i work in the back yard.  Comes outside and says he wants to go to the park.  We spend 2 hours at the park, come home play a computer game for about an hour, watch t.v for 30 miniutes.  terrorize oldest brother for and hour, eats dinner and then sits down to watch 30 minutes of Tom and Jerry...  I would say he feels much better, this makes me feel relaxed that I have my rough little boy back to normal!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Instant coffee???


Who would have guess that instant coffee would taste like this???  I was never a coffee drinker, actually never even thought of drinking it.  I met Lonnie October of 1997... He invited me down to Florida to hang out over the weekend.  Barnes and Noble was the one place I had always enjoyed spending my free time, something I had never noticed in B&N was Starbucks... I didn't drink coffee so why would I???

As I looked for a book to read during the time he was at work, he disappeared and returned with coffee in hand (yuk).  Ten years later I have taken on this love for the early morning begal and warm brew while I checked emails in preparation for my day.  Normally Lonnie makes the coffee, he grinds the beans, puts just the right amount into the perculator, and adds the perfect amount of cream and sugar for an awesome cup.
About two weeks ago, Lonnie brings me a card that has a small packet attached to it...

"what is it?"
"It's instant coffee from Starbucks, I brought you one home so you could try it..."
"yeeaaaa, probably not going to happen..."

Instant coffee has never been a favorite of mine and what the heck was Starbucks thinking packaging instant coffee???  On one dragged out morning when I really needed a quick pick me up to get my day going, I decided, it's either try to grind enough beans for two cups, drive to Starbucks for coffee, or boil me some water and hope for the best....  I am surprised to say, I actually enjoyed my instant coffee from this sample my husband brought home for me to try.  Not at all what I expected, it has a bold taste and smells great.  Now when I need a quick pick me up with out the drive down te way, the whirl of my coffee grinder. or the sound of the perculator.  I boil me a small pot of water, pour, and enjoy... I'm hooked.... almost!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Can I touch it???

I was looking through some old photos today and found some that made me laugh.  The pictures are from July 2007, Landon was 2.  We came outside to do yard work and get a bit of sun when three young squirrels showed up from nowhere.... and didn't leave!  they climbed Lonnies leg, ran after Landon as he rode his bus, they even let Landon touch and pet them...  All my husband could say was "this is odd for squirrels, they will bite your finger off for getting this close!"





Thursday, October 15, 2009

I baked!!!


Yes!!! I BAKED!!! not from a box, completely from scratch!!! (well not completely, I bought canned pumpkin puree...)  Lonnie asked for pumpkin loaf about a week ago so I set out to find it in a package of "just add water" (or milk)  Unfortunately, I could not find it this way so I had to utilize the next best resource to making yummy desserts (quick and easy)... the internet.  What I found is there is no real "quick and easy" way to make cakes, breads, and other baked goods.  Sooo, I found a receipe that worked with my time, budget, and skill level.  Thankfully I had every ingrediant needed in my pantry... with the exception of the pumpkin.  The question is do I make it from scratch (buy the pumpkin, scoop, cook, puree...) or is there an easier way,  the recipe said I can use a can of pumkin puree... NOT PUMPKIN PIE FILLING!!!  pure pumkin puree (check)  It was pretty easy to find thanks to my local commisary. 

As i was standing in my clean kitchen last night (thanks to good information provided from SAHM Amanda) I kind of felt like baking something... I guess a clean kitchen does this to a person...  I opened up the recipe on my laptop, took out everything I needed and went to work (rinsing the dishes and putting them in the dishwasher as I went...) I took out my 3 loaf pans filled them evenly and popped them in the oven for 1 hour.  The whole house smelled of pumpkin spice, Landon came in the kitchen to let me know it smelled delicious and he couldn't wait to taste.  An hour later out came my bread, one to eat immediately (taste so awesome fresh and warm from the oven) one for the next day, and one for the ladies at my husband's work (only IF the first one we tasted was good!)  I was super excited about my bake from scratch pumpkin loaf.  It was more work than i thought but fun no less!

I made it out the door~


It's a gray, chilly, wet day... I got up from my slumber, dressed in my work out gear, took Landon to daycare and then decided to skip the gym all together.... I came back home picked up the first magazine I saw on my table and saw the words "SHRINK YOUR BELLY" on the front cover of Women's Health... Since I have been staying home, I have managed to gain about 7 pounds- all which seem to gravitate right... around... the mid section... BELLY included~  With that "read", I got up and made tracks to the gym.  How is that for motivation!!!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

more yard finds..

I haven't found out what the funky looking pink thing in my yard is but since i have started my new venture in keeping my yard beautiful (and getting that "yard of the month" sign planted in my front yard), I have found some pretty interesting mushrooms and fungi lately... The newest finds in my yard:













I still do not know what this is....  If you have an idea
please share!

SAHM~ GO LADIES!!!

For the last month i guess you can say I have taken on the role of stay at home mom...

kind of~  The  schedule of a SAHM is far more work than I ever imagined!  There are schedules, car pools, play dates, lunch and dinners to prepare, budgets to maintain, school events, PTA... I can go on for ever about what these ladies do, this SAHM job is real deal!!! your job you think you work so hard at isn't sh*t compared to these ladies (& gents...)

I remember always saying, it must be nice to stay at home and do nothing... reality check!  these ladies are not just "staying home doing nothing".  Husbands~  you should high five, hug, kiss, and tell your SAHM how much you appreciate her every day.  It's a job that I still have not dared to venture into full time! heck, i can't even finish this "to-do" list my husband wrote for me over a month ago...

IT ONLY HAS 10 ITEMS ON IT!!! 

All day child care???? still paying daycare~ 

Dinner ready when sweetie comes in from a hard day of work... I don't even know what I'm cooking for dinner when he comes home from work!!

maintaining the budget... please, i spent $134.92 just today alone... for clothes and other items I know I didn't need! (not to mention I didn't even think about what was for dinner when i was shopping!) 

As a matter of fact my day went something like this..

convinced Landon he WANTED to go to daycare (so i could get some time alone) he was NOT happy and expressed how much he wanted to stay home or go to Theresa's instead...

















Went to the gym... didn't even run or break a real sweat, just checked it off in the box because i haven't been in almost a week!
















Stopped for coffee...


Stopped at the library to find a book about working from home (just in case..)


fixed the broken spout on the water hose....


so i could water the grass I am trying to grow...


I went down the street to pick up Landon from daycare, felt sleepy after that so, I took a nap until hubby got home.  Complained I needed help getting the old vents off of the house, watched him take them off, watched him rake the yard, watched him mow the lawn, remembered I had no idea what was for dinner so I went inside.... 

Stood in the kitchen for about 30 minutes thinking "hmmmmm, what's-for-dinner", checked my email, sent a few text, opened a bottle of wine, drank wine, checked facebook, drank wine, checked email, drank wine, checked on Landon because he was screaming, drank wine, and then thawed out some chicken to make a quick meal of chicken and mushroom gravy with rice and green beans... 

I have another month to get it together before i have to get a job, any advice on how to do this the right way???

Monday, October 12, 2009

The water heater (old post dated 6/22/08)

So, late Wednesday night while Lonnie was in the garage working on the motorcycles he comes in the house and says, "babe, i need you to come and look at something" I go out to the garage where I see our water heater leaking water onto the floor. I tell him he has to turn it off (so not to cause an explosion!) and because I'm a woman~ he calls his brother to get his take on the situation.... Needless to say, his brother tells him to turn it off so it doesn't cause an explosion. Can someone tell me why men don't listen to us women? It wrinkles my britches when my husband comes back to me and tells me "THE SAME THING" I just told him~ Does it mean the statement is true because it came from a male friend/brother/uncle/dad? (I love him so!)

Anyway, the next morning as he is working so hard as a network administrator, I am looking for a new water heater. I realize I have to find a way to get it to the house. He arrives at Lowe's and says, "We'll put it in the car" I laugh.... It starts raining, he's able to fit the water heater in the car... I stop laughing. Then he says "We need to buy a truck" (I start laughing again) so we get home and I go to work taking the old heater out and installing the new one. As i am cleaning the threads of the gas valve I tell my husband i need a soft brush~ he brings me a wire brush (and it's NOT a non-sparking wire brush) he realizes this mistake and gets another soft bristle brush. As I'm applying pipe sealant to the gas valve he starts talking to his brother on the phone next to me.... and decides to light a cigerette... I'm not the smartest person in the world, but, I kind of think to myself, the gas appears to be out, I don't smell anything but hey, you never know when you are working RIGHT next to the gas valve.. Sooooo I calmly (and sarcasticly) say "Sweetie, I feel reeeal comfortable with you standing right next to me smoking that 'ciggi' in your hand, I mean I AM only installing a GAS water heater and all" He thinks about this statement and replies "you're probably right babe" and goes outside to finish his conversation. Once I get everything connected and ready for test (test sat) He stands back and says "Good job babe, we work good together" Did I miss something???

Sam said it... "Don't buy guitar hero! it ruins relationships!!!" (old post dated 5/1/09)

Soooo, several weeks ago I mentioned to Sam that I was going to buy guitar hero for hubby, as I finished putting baby down for the night Lonnie and Brian are having an intense conversation over where to "pick it up" (they have been working on motorcycles for the last few weeks so I'm thinking motorcycle parts..) they disappear at about 8 45 PM and return about 20 minutes later~ guitar hero in tow... they eagerly set it up and commenced the challenge, at abot 2:55 in the morning I am being waken from a dead sleep being told "let's go to bed sweetie" in other words; he got it before I did... At first it seemed harmless, now I find that if I want any time alone with Lonnie I will have to make sure it is nowhere near a house with a t.v or any type of game system that contains "guitar hero" in the sit- on- your- ass- for- hours- at- a- time- and- ignore- everyone- around- you- collection that some people refer to as video games. The funny part is I WAS WARNED!!! I think the exact words were something like... "If you want any time with your husband, DO NOT but that game"

So now my down time consist of watching a television that once contained images of discovery channel/FOXnews/BRAVO and HGTV have been replaced and overtaken by two 30 something men watching primary colored pucks scroll quickly down what looks to be a runway (damn I miss project runway....)
Men... that's all I can say about that~

HATIN'~ A letter to a friend about "hatin"

As I was cleaning out "My Documents" folder I came across a letter I had written to a co worker and liked so much that I kept it for a future journal entry upon my return to the states...

The letter is to a young man who felt it his duty to let me know that some young girls felt my hair was not "neat in appearance" and that I needed to perm my hair and stop wearing it the way I do. Before he got into the specifics of the conversation he was having with this group of young women I stopped him and said calmly, "if they are talking about me, that's okay~ I pay my bills," then I walked away to go an appointment to make a video for my family…. The next morning as I listened to some young girls talk about another young lady who is low key and kept to herself, I decided to write the young man with this response to the young girls who were "hatin" on me for wearing my hair.... natural:

9 February 2008



Hey
I hope I didn't seem rude last night when you were telling me someone was "hatin'" on me~ I was running late for my video appointment (united through reading-- gotta read to the kids!) so I must first say sorry for being rude.
As for the "haters", there is one thing I can say about that word and those who do/use/live by it, and you can run this by all of those young females who, I'm almost positive, are all black, and you can also share this with those young females who feel the need to put down other black women because they lack self esteem/respect for self…. Unfortunately, when your adult mind runs on 16 (age that is…) and you have not done anything for yourself, you tend to spend more time gossiping and hating vise getting yourself to any level higher than where you are currently sitting.

If you ever sit back and observe me... You will notice a few things about me~ I don't gossip, I can care less about anyone else's business, I see good in many and talk to everyone unless they bring negative energy or they just do not leave that warm and fuzzy you normally get from good people… (those people I avoid speaking to all together)

I'm 37, I drive a decent car, even if it's not an expensive one. I own a house, my husband works setting up computer networks, I am going to school for small business management and taking the time to learn what the steps are to starting my own business, this way I do not have to rely on my husband to take care of me…. I'm happy not keeping up with the Jones' and staying real with the Subletts'. Other than my house and car- I have no real debts holding me back from those expensive items that "identify" our status among our friends and those who do not know us… I prefer to live within (or below) my means. I did not grow up rich and there is no reason for me to pretend I am now~ I'm in the Navy for goodness sake!!

I have two kids, My bills are my kids, my mortgage, and those associated with having a home. My hair is natural because I love it this way. I keep a low profile because it is who I am. I don't cheat or put myself in any position for anyone to question my loyalty to my family or the respect I have for my husband- I feel God intended for married people (and mothers)to respect one another, take care of home, and live by the vows presented before him…..

Anytime anyone says something about me, it is a reminder to myself that I am being thought about! When I was younger I did what these girls do now. It took a woman who had a great amount of respect for self to ask me "Why are you disrespecting that girl like that? Is it because she doesn't talk to you? Or is it because she keeps to herself? Maybe it is because there is a quality and respect she has for herself that you do not posses… Tell me, why are you disrespecting that woman like that?"

I thought about this question for a long time. In the end I found that "hatin' " on other people made me feel good about myself since I was not on the level that they were at.. It did not take long for me to find that, if I focus my attention on getting where these other "women" are~ instead of envying them for "what" they do and "where" they are, I too would be a better, more confidant person…. You know what, it paid off. Instead of seeing another black woman who is more beautiful, more successful, full of talent and energy and then turning to my girl to whisper, "she thinks she is all _____ or ____" I now look at that woman and say, I want to talk to this woman, get on her level, see where/how she got to where she is now. This helps me improve on a process that I have found to be a never ending project, a never ending process of self improvement….

I'm a country girl from KY. I grew up poor and unspoiled in my younger years and turned out to be a strong woman that a many respect and look to for advice.. That's who I am today..

There is more I can say but I have to go, there aren't enough minutes, hours, or seconds in the day to even attempt to get my young "sistas" on board in an effort to moving from hating each other to looking out for one another, making some positive improvements for in their environment and for themselves.. If they ever take the time to look around them: they'll notice that of all the different ethnicities out there…. Black women are still the main ones who spend more time 'hatin' on one another instead of working together to help move each other in a more positive direction of self awareness, respect for self and respect for those around you.. Tell those young black females to seriously take a look at many of these other groups of women… many have a bond that black women still haven't figured out~ SAD… sad that a lot of us still buy our "weave" from that Chinese woman who owns the shop on the corner when there is a black owned shop 2 blocks away, sad that a lot of us still work for pennies instead of starting our own business, sad we are not helping someone else get their foot in the door, sad that we spend more money on expensive clothes (not that that's a bad thing...) but we need to ensure our bills are paid, stomachs are fed, and our children look twice as good as we do when we walk out the door (priorities people!)

We still haven't learned… Sad that a lot of us are so far in debt but we can't resist buying those shoes because "such and such thinks they are the only ones who can afford them….." Do I really need to go any further??? I want you to help me get our young "sista's" on board… they still have a lot to learn.

Sorry for then vent session, it's not your fault they are left in the dark~ Respect for self is the only thing that will make them feel good about themselves and stop "hatin" on the next woman who already has gained just that:

Respect.

Peace...

Nothing to do (old post dated 5/5/08)

Funny thing (to me anyway)
I left work early today (7:00) so that I could take Cedric (my 13yr old) to his doctors appointment. His appointment is at 9:15 so I figure I'll use about an hour for some "me time". I stop to get gas, get a coffee from starbucks, and pick up a newspaper so that I can catch up on today's world

Unfortunately, I had duty the night before so when I walked into the house the first thing I notice is the kitchen is dirty and the counters are littered with clutter and mail. I'll have to clean the kitchen after work, this is my time. (Note to self: A house full of boys/men means you will always have to clean the kitchen EVEN if you have 24 hr duty the night before...)

Cedric is walking around touching and kicking stuff while sighing loudly so I ask, "What's wrong Cedric" he responds "I'm bored" I tell him to go clean his room. 5 minutes later he's back, leaning on the fridge he sighs again loud enough for me to say.
"What's wrong"

"Well, the doctor's office is right down the street. My appt isn't until 9:15 and it doesn't take long to get there"

"Okay???"

"Sooooo, what are we going to do?"
"I don't know Cedric, it's like 8 o'clock in the morning, what do you want to do, play jacks???" I ask sarcastically to which he replies;

"ummmmm, I don't think we have any jacks"

This is what happens when teenagers get bored!
DOES ANYONE EVEN PLAY JACKS ANYMORE??? I DON'T EVEN HAVE GIRLS IN MY HOUSE, WHY IN THE HELL WOULD I HAVE JACKS IN THE HOUSE????
Teenage boredom boggles me...

My Hugs

my hugs have many different meanings~

when i hug my husband it is to show him that i respect and love him with all my heart and soul. it is my way of showing him i truley adore him and feel secure having him as an important part of my life.

when i hug cedric, it is to let him know that no matter how hard the road to growing from kid to teen to adult may seem. he will come out of his diffucult (trying) journey with a clear view of why i stay on him about his grades, appearance, maintained household rules, and the importance being self sufficient and taking care of self.

When i hug landon it is to show him it is my job to take care of him 100% and no matter how much he says "MOMMY! Don't hug Landon!" It's my way of letting him know i love him and i am happy to have him in my life.

when i hug my friends, it not to say I sympathize/empathize or feel sorry for them, it's to let them know that no matter what they have going on in their lives whether it be good or bad, my hugs are my way of saying "i am here for you" and "i value your friendship".

my hugs are here for those who need them for support, comfort, or just because. they are given to let them know i appreciate having them in my life...

short vs long hair

soooo, Today I didn't feel like messing with my fro so I pulled the trusty old wig out to wear for errands... WTF is the deal with the hair? It's like I put on hair and become an instant black goddess of some sort. Everyone was especially nice at Walmart, the barista at Starbucks said she loved my cut (I told her it was a wig) she went from OMG smile to a lackluster "oh~" and when me and Lonnie went to lunch at hooters a few men did a double take when I walked to our table, the 2 guys behind the counter pointed and waved and... I'm not the smartest person in the world but the girl who served us not only flirted with Lonnie (for her tip) but she damn near sat on my lap for my order.
Now, in my mind. the afro is the sexiest style any laid back black woman could ever sport but lately I have found that people see unpermed hair and immediately think one of two things. 1) black power/pride 2) Gay----- and we all know that  #2 does not apply.....it is definately not a secret that I do have my pride (so what my heart belongs to that white guy!!!)

I'm still confused about the whole hair thing, I thought men were into round butts, tiny waists, and round perky boobs... apparently my afro has not only made me blind, it's also made me stupid.
Oh well, I guess if I'm ever feeling I am not getting enough attention at home I can always put on my wig and go out for the day...

This shit is ridiculous (I perfer the number 2 definition for ridiculous in the Encarta dictionary, north america: "completely silly ; silly and amusing" .... ) PERIOD
Enjoy the day~

I say "I'm married", he says "I know"...



As I was shopping today I was approached by a guy who used to be stationed on my ship. what started off as casual "hey, how you doing? where are you at now?" quickly turned into I always wanted to ask you out to lunch or dinner. do you think we could have lunch together one day???

I’m not sure why I immediately thought he was trying to hit on me... it could have been innocent, right??? It wasn’t~ So as a married woman I feel I should let it be known that I am married to which he responded "I know".... I was somewhat suprised at how nonchalant the response was, as if married people do this type of thing on a regular.
Is this what society has become these days? people say "it’s the military" but I have found that the barriers go past "the military" this has become the norm in society as a whole. women/men willing to "accept" that the person they are approaching have not only a wife/husband at home... but children as well. Some may say how can you put blame on one party (I don’t) I just feel that if you approach a person who says "I’m married" the proper/respectable thing to do is roll out...

Not just respect for the spouse, but RESPECT FOR YOURSELF....
If you seperate yourself from the equation there would probably be less temptation and infidelity going on in the world... hell, who am I fooling. Someone will always want what someone else has, even if they only want it for 30 minutes or more, I guess when things seem off limits or out of reach~ human nature causes us to push the envelope until we get that which is out of reach.

During a discussion a young lady explained to me why she felt men are not meant to be with one woman, it really made alot of sense and I totally respect her opinion but, I truley feel that is less complicated to just stay single and meet casually with a man from time to time especially if you KNOW he will continue to see other women...

So I would ask the public, why accept your wife/husbands infidelities when you can just move on and be with someone who is willing to be happy sharing their life with only you? (I believe those men/women are still out there) I don't feel one should settle for anything less than a woman/man who respects them (and the relationship) wholeheartedly.

There is nothing to be gained from sharing but heartache... I’ve been there~  I could go on and on about the subject of "me" but for some it would be a waste of thought and time,  I really think that people should seriously consider their morals and values the next time they feel the need to overlook the phrase "I’m married"

Can one seriously say :"it’s all about me and the married person is on MY time"?  Do they really come when YOU want them there???... can you truley only want sex with that married person with no attachments/commitments... maybe in the beginning.  unfortunately the human mind doesn't always stay on one track... feelings grow, people fall (in love), and in the end someone gets hurt...  Why bother when there are so many single men/women who are looking for "just sex"... Keep it simple, that way, if you fall, it's a discussion you two single friends with benefits can have concerning "where are we going" vice "what about your wife/husband and kids"?  You better believe that if a married person had any true intentions of leaving home, you would NOT be getting sent straight to voicemail every day after 6PM (on your time...)

Think about it... Who’s time are you really on?
Do they really come when YOU call?
How would YOU feel if the shoe was on the other foot?

I’m still in awe of how relationships and commitment have gotten to be so much like shopping for a new pair of shoes~ you know, pick and choose at will, discard when you are done, or better yet, work hard to keep them clean, in good shape, and reliable for when YOU are ready to explain to the other person that it is time for them to get rid of the ones at home... that are a constant reminder that you are only a borrower of time and sex.. not really a good fit in the shoe eqations of relationships....