Monday, October 31, 2005

Happy Halloween!

Today has certainly packed its punch. I'm so glad that it is almost over. Well, I am hoping that the rest of this evening will be all relaxation and zero stress. Thankfully round one of Operation Adoption is complete. For a more detailed summary of those events, please email me, or call, if you are so inclined.

Trick-or-Treating with the Snoog is always a blast. I always opt to buy her the full bodysuit plushy costumes. Mostly because she looks so cute when she walks around in them. This year it was a green dragon. No photos unfortunatey; my camera died.

Abi was a vampire [again], and Zac was a zombie [again]. My children...they are predictable, but at least the little one has to wear what I put on her. And until she protests, I'll go for the cute factor.

Caleb had a bagpipe gig this evening after the trick-or-treating. A wedding no less. They bride and groom were dressed as Frankestein and the Bride of Frankenstein. The set up for the wedding was a graveyard, and the entire front yard was bedecked with gruesome Halloween scenes. Again, no sucks I know. However, we will be going back there tomorrow night so that I can take photos, and show Zac, as he didn't attend the wedding with us.

I quite honestly didn't realize that it was going to be THAT horrific...I hope the girls sleep okay tonight. I am sure that I'll find a snoog in my bed at some point.

Speaking of snoog. After each house she would say "Okay, I need more". Halloween is definitely HER holiday. Not to mention the hissy fit she just got done throwing because I wouldn't let her bring her candy bag to bed. I'm such a terrible terrible mother.

Oh, so back to Caleb. He, of course, dressed the part of a Highland bagpiper. And myself...I wore my Oscar the Grouch skin jacket. But here is the costume I should have been wearing...

Your Famous Character Halloween Costume Is

Strawberry Shortcake

What Famous Character or Person Should You Be For Halloween?

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Quite Full

I am so completely depleted of energy right now. This past weekend was a series of ups and downs, highs and lows. Emotional and physical.

One of my most poignant revelations is that I am not as good as a mother as I would like to believe. This is not for lack of trying, but more for lack of energy.

My second most notable revelation is that E makes a bitchin chili. Better than mine in fact, and I am not afraid to admit this. It doesn't help though whenever they come over for dinner, my recipes turn out all wrong. Perhaps I am trying too hard.

This past weekend was very food oriented.

Friday evening we attended a Harvest party in which we feasted on many Hobbit-like recipes. I left overstuffed and pleasantly satiated, even if I did pass on the mushroom pie. I don't do fungus.

Today after church we spent a nice afternoon at B & E's. Again, her chili rocks. So much so, that I could have fallen asleep on their couch had it not been for an overactive three year old.

I'm about to go change into something extremely comfortable and less binding, make some tea, and curl up with my book. There is so much to do tomorrow, thankfully it is a few dreams away between now and then.

I'll probably fall asleep before the steam curls disappear.

Friday, October 28, 2005

Good News

I don't live in Arizona, but this issue really hit home for me. As a mother of three and advocate of breastfeeding, I support cause for ensuring that mothers should be able to breastfeed thier babies in public without being harassed, ridiculed, or treated like perverse criminals.

I firmly believe that breastfeeding mothers should receive support in their decision to give their babies the healthiest of nourishment. Therefore, I sent in my letter to the Mayor's office in Chandler, Arizona; where this issue had become a heated debate over the summer months.

The results are in:

Dear Kassandra,

Thank you for your email. I will ensure that the Mayor and Council receive a copy of your correspondence.

Last night, the City Council voted unanimously to approve an ordinance stating that: "A mother may breastfeed her child in any location, public or private, where the mother and child are authorized to be."

The City Council also supported a resolution requesting the Arizona legislature to enact legislation that protects a mother's right to breastfeed her child in any location where the mother and child are authorized to be.

The resolution supports an exemption for breastfeeding from the statutes relating to indecent exposure.

Thank you again for your comments.


Melanie Sala-Friedrichs
City of Chandler - Office of the Mayor & Council MS
603 PO Box 4008
Chandler, AZ

If I had a mood ring, the color would be yellow.

I can't find the papers I need for Monday. I know exactly the folder that I put them in, but ask me where I put the folder and I draw a blank.

I have a feeling that I left it at one of my numerous work places over the past few years. I may have needed it for one thing or another...and now they [the folders and papers within] are gone.

I have a copy. But in my experience, copies are no good; they always want originals.

This is one major set back of being a clean freak. When you go through a tirade of cleaning, and throwing things away, you are never quite sure if you have thrown something away that you may have needed later. I usually try to not think too much on that, but right is bothering the living crap out of me.

Working against me is the fact that I only had 3 hours of sleep last night because my stupid neighbors are trying to smoke us out, and they are succeeding. I figured at 2:00 AM if they are going to wake us up out of a sound sleep by suffocating us with their second-hand toxins, then I can scream toxins of my own at them through the vents.

Trust me, I have volume and vocabulary on my side.

At one point I recall going outside in my flannel jammies to check on whether or not their lights are on, and realizing how white trash this all really is. Thankfully I had the presence of mind to take down my Pebbles hair-do before tromping outside.

After I came back in I realized that my wonderful husband had turned off the furnace fan. The fan that pressurizes our home and keeps their air from intermingling with our air. I've explained this to him. But he thought it a better idea to turn the fan off and shut the windows, thereby boxing us in a carcinogen coffin.

We are investing in an air purifier. Period.

That's okay, it will all work out I'm sure. But to exemplify my mood, just moments before I started writing this post, I sat down at my desk, and quickly realized that I was sitting in cold pee.

Cold pee. That about sums it up.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

It was one of those moments where you think...who are you and what have you done with my daughter?

I am folding clothes in the living room, because the amount of clothes that have to be folded is more than what is actually residing in our clothes drawer as a family unit. It's a mountain. Trust me.

Kimi (my three-year-old daughter) is counting the towels. She counts up to thirteen.

Then she turns to me and says "Mommy say it in, dos, tres, cuatro, cino, seis, siete, ocho...."

At this point in time my world spins off it's axis and I declare "International Pudding Day".

*significance: I didn't know she knew what Spanish is, let alone how to speak it.

Thrillsville Update

Enter the Park

Yes, this was our third trip to Cedar Point this year. I'm not sure why we opted to do this, but we did. And I am glad that for once, I was able to experience a Halloweekend.

It wasn't as spooky as I had hoped it would be, but perhaps my extreme familiarity with the park itself had something to do with that.

We did get to ride the Raptor, which is ever so much better when the park is dark and obscured by numerous fog machines. We also rode the Millenium Force twice.

While on the M.F. I tried B's tactic of total relaxation. I didn't pass out as he did, but I did not experience the stomach drop sensation that usually accompanies roller coaster rides. I actually felt "one" with the coaster as I zipped and glided along the track. Pretty cool actually.

We also took on the Wicked Twister. However, we did not ride Top Thrill Dragster. In our past 2 years of visits, the ride hasn't actually piqued our interest. I guess I'm not interested in this particular concept ride that shoots you 400 feet into the air at a 90 degree angle. Not so much.

Chicken? Perhaps. But the line to ride this particular attraction has been too long of a wait, therefore not worth wasting my time.

We did check out one spooky attraction; Werewolf Canyon. It wasn't too hokey. Each one of us jumped at least once. For me, the creepiest part was the slaughterhouse at the end hosted by man sized pigs sporting butcher knives...which may rear it's little head as a feature in the next episode of my Red Creek game. We'll see.

I liked how the midway was all lit like the old carnivals. I liked how the narrow lanes were fogged and lit with red lights so that people walking through would slowly obscure then disappear in red mist.

I did get one good scare...I felt a tapping on my shoulder, and thought it was my son...but I quickly ascertained that everyone in my group was in my sight, therefore the one tapping me on my shoulder was not anyone I knew...that was creepy. Caleb didn't even notice and I was holding his hand. I sacrificed Brain in that endeavor pushing him between me and whatever was behind me without a glance back. Sorry Brain.

Ghost Swings on Water

We did get to ride the swings, which is one of my favorites of all time. I haven't been on this ride in YEARS. And I learned that night, it still makes my stomach loopy. Funny how speeding a long a track at 85 miles per hour and down a 320 ft hill is 'easy', while the swings, trip me out. I think it is the thought that there is a higher probability that the chains will break than the roller coaster car shooting off the end of the track.

Oh, and Caleb and I watched "Rosemary's Baby" on Tuesday night. Caleb had never seen it before. I endured his endless stream of questions throughout. Hoping that my answers would fill in the blanks for him, and that perhaps he would find some merit in the story. There is nothing quite like sitting through the part where Ro realizes that her baby is laying in a black basinette, and someone is exclaiming "Is she going to kill it?".."She should kill it", over and over again. At the end his final thought was "that was stupid", and then continued with asking what the point. What was the movie trying to say...

To be honest, I don't know what the point was other than to creep the viewer out, and make them think, so I made up that in the face of evil, the instict of motherhood was the greater force, or some nonsense like that.

Then, last night we were watching Batman vs. Dracula [which was actually REALLY good (and dark) for a cartoon], and someone walked past our back sliding glass door. I could see thier silouhette. So I commented to Caleb that someone is back there, and what does he do? He walks over and says "really?...who?" pulls back the blinds and opens.the.door. (???) Not only does he open the door, but he LEAVES IT OPEN and sits back down on the couch. (????)

That in itself is proof enough that if we were going to be overtaken by zombies, Caleb would open the door and let them in.

Jiminy Cricket!!

Why don't you give them an engraved invitation while you're at it?!? I'll fill up the inkpot with blood, heres a quill...

We are going to a Halloween Party tomorrow night. Not sure yet if we are going to really dress up or not. Probably not, just for comfort reasons. I'll probably just do something dark and gothy. Bah.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

home is where the heart is

my grandma is 80 years old and she doesn't have a home of her own. she has been displaced since shortly after her [several] strokes; bouncing from one relative to the next because she shouldn't live on her own. the constant state of transition is tiring for someone who just wants to settle in and watch some t.v. in her own chair. i've offered numerous times for her to come live with us, but i know it would be more of the same unrest for her weary [and extremely independent] soul. sadder still is the fact that she has been monetarily taken advantage of by those same relatives. she is old. she is tired. she is often bitter. but she is my grandma and I pray that she will find home soon.

Coulda Used a Cork

Merlin died. Not today. About a week or so ago. He wasn't able to swim any longer, he just sat at the bottom of his bowl. His fins moved, but his spine was all bent. He couldn't eat. I looked up on the internet what might be wrong with him. Apparently he was over fed. I know who over fed him, but it is no use to bring it up. The culprit is way too young to understand that an entire container of fish food is just too much.
Anyway, I found out today that I could have taken Merlin in to get surgery to straighten his spine and fix his floater. Unfortunately it is too late now. Adieu Adieu Adieu.

Fish surgery: The "something new" I learned today.

Merlin in his glory days

Crazy Cat Eyes

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

20 Things

I was tagged twice for this meme. Once by Irene and then by Bella. But that does not mean I am doing 2 lists...

1. My first memory is of climbing up onto my grandma's kitchen counter to get into the cookie jar.

2. I want a breast reduction [both of them].

3. I can't balance a checkbook, therefore will not write checks.

4. I want to write a book, but I am uninspired.

5. I have a collection of Harley Quinn comic books

6. My youngest daughter is spoiled and it is my fault.

7. I play roleplaying games.

8. I obsess.

9. I'm afraid of water.

10. And the dark.

11. I secretly think I could be a really good detective.

12. Or spy.

13. I take my vitamins.

14. I like giving gifts.

15. I like to play Scrabble.

16. I do not spend enough time with my children.

17. Right now I can barely breathe.

18. I wish someone would take MY picture for a change.

19. I have wanted to ride in a hot air balloon since the very first time I saw one.

20. I use to be a General Hospital junkie.

Roxy on Alert

October Walk

Shoes on.
Jackets on.
Dog leashed.
Hats on.
Child strapped in stroller.

walk, jog, walk, jog. The sky grey and spitting rain.
hurry home, hurry home. The last thing we need is an ear ache or worse.

Shoes off.
Jackets off.
Dog unleashed.
Hats off.
Child set free.

Grey clouds gone. The sun shines at me through the window as if tickled by its own humor.

The Truth of the Matter

Things are going well over here at Chez-Gilbert. I haven't anything really to complain about. And truthfully that worries me. I'm not sure if it is needless worry, or if it is indication that something truly stressful is about to happen. Calm before the storm type of thing.

I am really not sure what to do with myself now that I have finished my degree, and sent in my grad application. Usually at this time, after having finished my final exams, I would be making arrangements for the next semester of tedious classes. Now, time is stretching before me without any marked activities that must be done.

I've never experienced this.

I guess my itch is a combination of two things.

1. I am no longer a single mom, working a full time job and going to school full time.

2. I want the adoption process to go without a hitch.

The first one has everything to do with my identity. Since that was my identity for a good 6 years or so, it is hard to relieve myself of all those titles and move on to something new without knowing what that something new will be.

The second one is easy to rationalize; the adoption is not in my control. There are two very distinct unknown variables. Unknown variables scare the control freak within; the result being excessive worry.

It has been my experience that worrying about every possible scenario has helped keep everything in line with the order of the universe. And no one can convince me otherwise.

If I don't worry; bad things happen. At least this is what I have convinced myself since a very young age. Which has probably attributed to a lot of malfuntions in my personality, and my relationships. (I am prone to bouts of self-psychoanalyzation-working at a mental health clinic was very very insightful)

At any rate, today I don't have anything planned. Which can go one of two ways. I can waste the entire day wondering what I should be doing, hence only getting the bare minimum of things accomplished. Or I can give myself a two or three goals.

I've opted for option B.

One of those goals is to actually sit down for about an hour and start reading my neglected book. Yesterday I was waylaid by my husband. Or actually, my husband pointed out the finer attributes of doing some Christmas shopping since he was home, and all of the children were out. We are almost done with said Christmas shopping, which will be a strange phenomenon come Christmas Eve this year.

So we did that.

My next goal today is to sit down and do some concept drawing for the murals in the children's classrooms at church. The children's director (the lady who I volunteer assist once a week) had distributed a public request for anyone with artistic talent to submit ideas for the murals. I've done mural work before at a daycare, so I have decided to see if they might like my ideas. If they do, then I will have a new and very big project ahead of me; because I will also be coordinating the painting of said murals.

My last goal is an "and or". If the weather remains beautifully gloomy, I will do some much needed houswork...mainly putting away my laundry and then taking Kimi and Roxy for a walk.

If the weather brightens up, I will take Kimi to the park. I mentioned this in passing to her yesterday, and this morning SHE woke ME up by knocking on my door yelling "GONNA GO TO THE PARK MA MA!!" So you see, I really have little choice in the matter at this point.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

The Patient Book

I received a copy of this book in 1999. I was about quarter into it when it was lost.

As I recall, I was getting into my car, and because putting things on the roof of my car as I loaded the children in was a habit of mine, I forgot it was there and drove away.

Distraction is another habit of mine.

I managed to break the first of those two bad habits when I lost my planner containing my rent payment and paycheck via the same way. I think I will always suffer from distraction.

I was extremely upset over losing the book, [more so the rent payment]. However, the book was replaceable, so I bought a new copy. This copy.

I barely picked it up to start again,when I began college in 2000.

A distraction of a bigger sort you could say...

The book was put down on the shelf, though not forgotten.

It was relocated from apartment to box to apartment to box a few times over.
And last year, I read close to 15 books, never picking this one up.
Yet, whenever I would see it I would think: "I should read that book."

Admittedly, this book has been my safety net. Knowing that I will always have something to read if I run out of other good books to read has been a bit of a comfort.

Tonight as I was contemplating buying a new book, one that I have been considering for some time, but putting off because I always put my book purchases at the bottom of the list of necessities, I spied this book sitting on the shelf.

It is one of the few of my books that survived the flood. Its pages are warped and wrinkled, but intact. It was spared the mold damage that my other books undertook, therefore not thrown away.

Tomorrow is technically "my" day. Kimi will be at daycare, and I have the afternoon free after my volunteer work is through. I received tea and chocolate as a graduation gift from a close friend. All equalling the clear fact that I will need a book to read. But I really shouldn't buy one right now. I would be an irresponsible squander that I can't reconcile, therefore wouldn't enjoy.

The book looked back at me from the shelf, not so much accusingly for it's years of neglect and battery. More like with pleading, as if to ask..."When will I be able to share my story with you?"

I picked up the book, slipped my favorite book marker into the first page and brought it downstairs.

"How does tomorrow sound to you?"

Good Times

Me with my younger, very impressionable, often turned-to-goo cousins. Love them to pieces.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Bizarre Fascination

It's cold outside today. Colder than I care to have it actually. Especially because in a few hours we will be heading down to our favorite amusement park to see if we can be thrilled by their various haunted houses and Halloween attractions: Cedar Point once more!

I'm not sure what my fascination is with horror. It disturbs me sometimes that my favorite authors at the tender age of seven were Dean Koontz and Stephen King.

Some of my strangest behaviors stem from scaring people or scaring myself.

For instance, when I was much younger, my cousins and I would play hide and seek. I'd always get to hide first, because I am the oldest, and I made the rules. Eventually our hide and seek games ended up taking us past nightfall, and that was of course my best hiding time of the day.

I took full advantage that I knew every nook and cranny of our property, and the dark looming barns situated a distance from my house.

After a while I became bored with the "regular" version of the game and decided to add my own twist to the fun. I would hide so well that they couldn't find me anywhere. I have this uncanny knack for being dead quiet. Seriously. It's eerie.

I remember being frightened as I did this, the darkness swallowing me up, making me invisible. At these times, I pretended that I was a ghost, so that the other ghosts would just accept me and leave me be. It wasn't all that frightening that way. Eventually they became so scared that something had happened to me they would run to the sanctuary of my well-lit farmhouse crying for my mom. I would of course get in trouble for making them cry.

Another antic that I played on my cousins was when I would spend the night. Knowing that my cousins were very susceptible to being scared, I would wait until we were tucked in. The whole house quiet and dark. I'd start with zombie rasping and then work my way up to cackles and ghost-moaning their names. This of course led to crying.

I was a disturbed child, I've told you this.

My cousins, poor guys. They could very easily take me out as they both out weigh me by 150lbs each. It is hard to conceive that these two big guys were turned to trembling goo by a waif of a girl at one time.

Good times.

Proud of being the mean older cousin? No. But I've already made my apologies for being such a brat to them, and they know that I love them dearly.

In retrospect, I realize the reason I developed the ability to be quiet, and ghost-like was because my stepdad was very afraid of the idea of ghosts. It gave me a certain pleasure to know that he had a weakness that I could overcome.

One of them will actually be watching the girls for us. There is no way that I could subject them to this type of entertainment. I made the mistake of letting Abby watch "IT" once, and well. That didn't work out so well. Now she shares my extreme and unnatural fear of clowns.

But the boy? He is coming along with me. He has already displayed the affinity for such amusements. That and I need to pass along this recessive fascination of horror on to someone.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Friday Evening Observation

I have come to the decision that I need to live someplace warmer so that it is unnecessary for me to have a layer of fat in order to stay warm.


Yes, it has begun. Time to jump through the red bureaucratic hoops of the ever-loving Wayne County Judicial system.

I sat in the office of the dreadfully dispositioned adoption officer thinking to myself, as if to will her hand, "please just let us do this now..." over and over in my head.

I think I broke my thinker though, because her hand didn't tip, and we were sent out the door to treasure hunt for more necessary information in order to process our request. Frustrated? Yes, but I remained composed.

I suppose that they can't just go around signing off on adoption papers willy nilly.

Another appointment in 10 days. Yes, on Halloween!! More cause to love the holiday.

I realize that this is a test. Thankfully I am getting much better at this this whole patience thing.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

All at Once

When I received the papers in the mail announcing that I was awarded sole physical custody of my daughter, it was as if a weight had been lifted off my shoulders.

She is mine.

I could rest knowing that there would be little, if any, interference from her paternal father. I knew that eventually he would stop seeing her, it was just a matter of time.

The child support checks kept rolling in, and with each one the knowledge that if he wanted, he could see her.

Tomorrow we will be heading to a court appointment to file a petition for adoption. Caleb has been the only father figure that she has known. Since the moment she could address him by a name, it has been "Pappa".

She has shortened that name a bit, especially when she is exasperated with him, to just "Pop". Sometimes she refers to him as "Dad". Which is nice, but that title never really sticks. Other times she calls him "Caleb", and we are quick to correct her. I think that she gets confused because Zac and Abby call him by his first name, so why shouldn't she?

I remember once that my step dad asked if he could adopt me. I remember the elation I felt about the prospect of truly being part of that family. And actually having a dad. It was probably one of the only times in my childhood that I felt wanted.

Of course, it was short lived, and it was only mentioned that one time.
He never adopted me, and I am sure that I am better off for it. At least I never had to carry the name of the man who left scars deep enough for nightmares 20 years later.

But this is different. Much different.

Caleb is her Pappa, and he loves her in a way that I myself will never experience.

He loves her like a father.

And for me, all at once; that weight is lifted more.

Imaginary Friend

A long time ago I had a friend, who I considered my best friend in the whole wide world. We spent a lot of time laughing, and being supportive. But we spent our fair share of fighting as well.

Then one day I moved, and we lost touch. We renewed the connection, and that was fine for a while. But then she stopped returning my calls. I found out that she moved. And I had no idea where she went.

She called me one day out the blue. To talk and catch up. She let me know that she had been going through a really bad time and was depressed. That is why she didn't call.

I was really happy to hear from her because there wasn't a day that went by that I didn't think of her and wonder if she was alright. She was my friend after all.

Then one day, she stopped calling and returning my calls. Again. And this time I was upset for a different reason. I had thought that she understood I was there for her no matter what, and especially through the rough times. She was my friend after all.

She contacted me out of the blue again. Just a few days before my wedding. I informed her what was going on, she didn't even know that I had been engaged. We caught up on each other's lives. She went through a bad break-up and wanted, needed time to herself to figure things out for her life.

I told her that part of friendship is bearing each others burdens. Perhaps if she didn't need me at the time, I may have needed her. She was my friend after all.

I asked her that if she wanted to continue our friendship to please stop disappearing, and only contacting me when it was convenient. She said that she was sorry, and she said okay.

Then one day she stopped responding to my emails.

Perhaps our friendship was just my imagination after all.

I have learned to stop waiting for a response. Sometimes friends turn into people that you used to know. Grace is knowing when to let them go their own way, with or without you.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Kitty: The other OTHER white meat.

No, this was not a mother-approved activity.
Yes, the boy was made to clean the refrigerator afterwards.
Yes, tangerines go in the frige, but Tangerine does not.
No, we do NOT accept "take-out" orders.

Today Is...

Taking Snoog to daycare
Setting a doctor appointment for my son
Setting a doctor appointment for myself
Picking up the Art-Mom package from the Community Art Center
Going to the church to do some volunteer work
Doing some laundry
Finishing 3 days worth of Bible study
Dropping off my Mary Kay contributions for the Chamber of Commerce
Mailing out Mary Kay orders
Sending birthday cards
Attending Wednesday evening Bible Study

I'm not sure if I'll actually have time to do all of this...

But today definitely is NOT doing homework.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

The Word Is...

Quality Management = A-

Strategic Management = B+

NOW I can officially celebrate.

Kassi Needs...

I typed in "Kassi Needs" into Google, and this is what it tells me. It is kind of like a a messed up psyche eval... then again, in my case perhaps not too far off the mark.

Kassi Needs:

An experienced family that will support her special needs.
You right now.
Only 6 MACH points.
Students in York and Adams county.
A helping hand.
To learn from your experience.
A bicycle.
DVD’s and videos.
To release it.
To make up her mind.
Only one more Gamblers leg.
Something more.
Your help.
To divulge anything.
A plan.
Everybody’s prayers and support.
Her own home.
More CHD awareness.
To be validated.
To sign up for both lecture and seminar.
Her own blog.
To control her temper.
To be subtle and lovely.
A bloody good talking to.
A pair of low to no heeled boots.
To leave home.
A liver transplant.
Him to take pictures
To know about healthy eating.
More emphasis on F and E.
Her own show.
To be cast into oblivion.
To be handled.
To be taught when her protectiveness is appropriate.
Daily injections.
A bum shot.
A little extra time.
To balance the demands.
To lose some weight.
To be presented to the BMorg as a gift.
A one-year renewable clause.
To have a stronger focus.

And last but certainly not least...and probably my favorite...

A little more cowbell.

Whiney Whinerstein

Sometimes whining works. The aforementioned company of suckage is cutting my cheque early and sending it to me overnight .

Okay so, maybe I was a little harsh. I hate being picked over.

Down on the Farm

Last Saturday we went to the cider mill. It was a lot of fun, but they had some really weird looking animals on display.

Me, Snoog, and Abby on the tractor ride.
And yes, I did skin Oscar the Grouch.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Guess What?

As of 9:00 PM on this find Monday evening, I am officially done.

Steam Rolled

I know that I have been going on about this stupid job at ProQuest like a babbling baby, but I just feel steam rolled.

They had no intention of hiring me as a permanent employee. I went into the situation with the intentions of staying, because that is the line that they fed me.

I was not referred by an agency. I am not familiar with temporary jobs. All I know is that for me to commit to an employer takes a lot of effort on mine and my family's parts.

Arranging daycare alone is a feat in itself emotionally, nevermind coming up with the extra income to cover daycare costs that weren't there before. Plus pay for gas, and food expenditures in order to work in the office.

It's not a fly by the seat of your pants situation for a woman with three young children. Something that I made abundantly clear to them before they offered the job.

They didn't care.

Now, I will not receive my last paycheck for another 2 weeks. Nevermind that my first paycheck just barely covered the daycare expenses that we had to pay for in order for me to work in the first place.

This endeavor was suppose to help me cover some of my personal debts so that I didn't have to take out of the family finances...all it has done is upset my life and drain me of time, money, energy, and esteem.

I've been abused by employers before. Many times. And probably much worse than this. Regardless of the circumstances it depletes me emotionally.

I guess I am disappointed that I let myself be bent over a desk and taken advantage of in one way or another for the sake of a faceless organization that could care less if I lived or died. I'm tired of being treated as replaceable.

The thing that gets me is that they didn't give it a second thought that I would have to wait a couple of extra weeks for my check. They didn't bother to call and inform me. I was not given a second thought.

My feeling is that if they want to hire temps, go through an agency. The people that work temp jobs understand the beauracracy. Don't take advantage of a mom with three kids who is trying to re enter the workforce. Because that just sucks.

Spittn' Mad

The mail came today. Guess what didn't arrive? My paycheck. Nevermind that they had made a job offer to someone else prior to hiring me, without my knowledge, and proceeded to give me a three month term, that ended in three weeks. Nevermind that they insulted me regarding my obtaining a Bachelor's Degree...but now, to not send me my paycheck when I know very well that I turned in my last time sheet on time, and payday was last Friday.

THAT makes me mad.

I feel pretty safe in saying that my experience with this company has been less than satisfactory...therefore ProQuest sucks.

Mixed Signals

My husband has been dragging his feet all morning about going out for a jog. So, I've been giving him "friendly" nudges to get him out of the house, and more specifically to stop him from reading over my shoulder...

He finally got fed up with my prodding and retorted:

"You're not the leader of me!"

Then not a minute later after getting his shoes on [finally] he asks...

"What time do you want me back?"

Sunday, October 16, 2005

.Mac or Dell

I am hoping upon hope that I will be able to afford a new laptop within the next two weeks. I've been doing my preliminary research on which would be better for me, a .Mac or a Dell. I currently use a Dell desktop computer, and while it has given me it's troubles, I am used to it. Familiarity has its upside.

But I am adventurous and not unwilling to change. So, if you have an opinion about the iBook or Dell laptop please share it. I am hoping to receive some consumer thoughts before making my investment.

Right now I am leaning towards a Powerbook G4.

29 Page Paper = Done

I am not making any more revisions. It is done. Off my shoulders and on to the professor who will have to read through it and hack it apart. And you know what?...I'm okay with that.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Nothing Like It

There really is nothing quite like having a proper fitting bra.

It's enough to turn your nose up at the department stores and shop exclusively at a specialty lingerie shop. Yes, I had to spend twice as much...but the bra is OPRAH approved. And we all know that Oprah knows all.

Besides, the clerks at the department store won't come into the dressing room with you and tell you if it looks good or not.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Cleaned Out My Closet

Brain Food Needed

If I go to bed now I won't get up early enough to work on my paper in the morning. So, I had better stay up as late as possible.

Thank goodness I have Propel and Coke at my disposal.

I only wish I hadn't ate all the cookies earlier today. Cookies would be nice right about now, as I burn the midnight oil into the wee hours of the morning.

They were peanut butter chocolate chip.

I guess I'll have to settle for a PB & J.

(side note, the purple jelly looked like "The Blob" and smelled slightly fermented. So I opted for strawberry)

Did I mention that I hate being the one who edits the 29 page paper? This is my second group project report that I have had to edit...and it never ceases to amaze me that people with college educations cannot form a proper paragraph and are still confused by homophones.

2nd grade people. 2nd grade.

And to elucidate my meaning...a poem:

An Ode to the Spelling Chequer

Prays the Lord for the spelling chequer
That came with our pea sea!
Mecca mistake and it puts you rite
Its so easy to ewes, you sea.
I never used to no, was it e before eye?
(Four sometimes its eye before e.)
But now I've discovered the quay to success
It's as simple as won, too, free!
Sew watt if you lose a letter or two,
The whirled won't come two an end!
Can't you sea? It's as plane as the knows on yore faceS.
Chequer's my very best friend
I've always had trubble with letters that double
"Is it one or to S's?" I'd wine
But now, as I've tolled you this chequer is grate
And its hi thyme you got won, like mine.

—Janet E. Byford

Thursday, October 13, 2005

The Cat's Pajamas

I've decided that my new hobby is to craft clothes for my cat. Her first outfit is going to be a green felt jacket, perhaps accompanied by a black fez.

I've also decided to make her a cape. You know, for that time of night when she is zooming around the house like a cat on crack. I want to see the cape flying out behind her when she leaps into the air. I've even figured out a way to make it stay on without turning around on her body.

My husband thinks I'm nuts. And before this evening I really wondered why people were compelled to dress thier pets. But then I just got to thinking that Tangerine would look awful cute in a green jacket.

Funny how things happen that way.

Of course,I am suppose to be writing my final paper for Strategic Management (29 pages total). Instead I am envisioning cat fashions. You do the math.

At any rate, it gave me a good laugh to see the look on my husbands face as I described my intentions. And at this point (any) laughter is a much needed break.

Picky Eater

"What are you doing?"

"I'm throwing it away and starting over again."


"I hate it when I break the yolk. I can't eat it."


"I'm not hungry"

"Yes you are"

"No...I'm not."

"You don't like what I've made."

"It's not that..."

"Then what is it?"

"Well....who in the world makes corn and hot dogs?"


"Corn goes with chicken, not hot dogs. Peas go with hot dogs."


"I've ordered you tea."

" you."

"What's wrong?"

"Nothing. I like tea, you know I like tea."

"I know you like what's wrong?"

"I just won't be able to order what I wanted to order now."

"Why not?"

"Because you can't drink hot tea and eat a hamburger...they just don't go together. So I'll have to get something else..."


My agitation grows as I watch my youngest daughter pick the chicken and broccoli out of the rice stir fry I have prepared. I always worry she doesn't eat enough, and now she is picking up each individual rice and inspecting them before putting it in her mouth.

"Just eat it like it is...quit being such a picky eater!!"


I've been pondering a bit on writing and truth.

I once knew someone who smithed me letters like a dreamweaver and I believed every word. It was his ability to write that trapped me. He wrote everything that I had ever wanted to believe about love.

One day I found letters that he had been writing to someone else...much like the words that he had wrote to me at one time. My rose colored glasses shattered. The truth is that I clung to the words he had written, and ignored the reality around me.

Words are powerful. And paper burns.


Tell me a story
Write me a page
Wrought by your pen
Capture me in a gilt cage

Weave me silk lines
Of true love without sorrow
Catch moonbeams tonight
Spin sunshine tomorrow

Ink me a world
Fill up my head
Wave your glass stylus
Ensare me in web

I'll believe every line
Verse, proverb, and prose
Just to lose time
In a room full of rose

And when the book closes
Not a noble I'll see
You're only you
And I'm only me

A bard who can write
Words like a dream
Crafts no more the truth
Than a whore who claims queen

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

So Long

Has it been so long that I have felt magic?
Have I forgotten who I was, and who I wanted to be?
Has darkness clouded my days so well that I became comfortable in the shroud?
Or is there still hope left for me ?

Like the last drop of honey that clings to the side of the jar, my thoughts can still taste the lingering sweetness left behind by a girl that dreamnt magic not so long ago.

Emerging Me

Quiet house. Light a candle. The music sings behind me from another room. So much to little time, as the old adage says. Not old, not young, just on the verge. Just realizing that this timeless state means possibility. Could it be that the haze is lifting, that a new season is about to begin? My perspect turns outward instead of in. The air is different now, and I can breathe. Oxygen to fill my lungs. Oxygen to clear my head. Oxygen to keep the candle lit. Stay lit a little longer for inspiration, for warmth...for light; let my wings span this dark cocoon.

Snapshot by Kimi

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Beyond Fed Up

I am so unbelievably tired of giving up my weeknights, my time; doing homework. The sickness of it all is just seething off of me like gas fumes ready for flame.

I'm sick of the papers, I'm sick of the fighting to get peace and quiet. I'm sick of fighting for understanding from family members who want my attention every second of the day. Not because they want it, but because the mounting student loans dictate that I cannot give it.

I'm fed up with the crap of never being available to anyone at any time. And I'm tired of no one realizing this...playing guilt games with me. I suck at guilt games. I feel guilty for everything already, so I always lose.

Tonights attempt at doing homework has failed miserably. I just need one week. One week to finish these last two classes. That's it. Then I'm done. Done with it all, to receive a mediochre degree in a mediochre field so that I can obtain a mediochre job in which to support my mediochre life.

Slap a chump sticker on my butt and send me out the door.


One week...just one week...give me quiet and solitude and don't bother me again so that I can just get these three papers finished and never write another case study ever again for as long as I live...don'tbothermeagainunlessyouaredying.

I've fed you, clothed you, changed you, just be happy without me there. And now that this post is sounding reminiscent of a suicide note...I'll go back to attempting to write this damn paper about the devil's own discount store. Oh how I hate Wal-Mart.

This rant brought to you by Uncomfortable Pants.

"Wear 'em they'll squeeze the life right out of you"

$24,000 / Zero Interest

I have absolutely no interest in doing anymore homework. I'm 2 days late writing a paper. I am quite certain that this is it for me. Not unless I am going to school to earn a degree in something halfway interesting.

Button Nose

I present the most kissable nose in the world. Or, at least my world. She is lucky that I have enough self control to no just pinch it off. Thankfully, she is patient enough with me to allow plenty of nose smooches. This is one button I can't get enough of.

Monday, October 10, 2005


I sent out the letter of intent to Kimi's paternal father on Friday. I always get a little nervous when I have any sort of contact with that man.

I get knotted up inside.

Not simply because I don't want to have contact with him; but for the fact that him, as a presence in my life, or even just a thought, reminds me so much of how terribly low of a person I had become.

I don't want to be that girl...ever again.

Real Conversations

A. Was that you?

B. Yes *laughing*

A. Seriously?

B. Yes...

A. Oh my gosh, it sounded like it came from the hallway...I thought it was the dog..
I had no idea you were a ventriloquist farter.

B. *laughing hysterically*

A. You really are talented.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Dinner Train Moments

These are some photos from our First Anniversary celebration on the Michigan Star Clipper dinner train.

Hallway just outside our cabin.

The unbelievably uncomfortable hobbit-sized bed. Luckily, we are almost hobbit size.

The very funky washbasin.

Flowers waiting for me at the table.

We may be smiling but we
are very very hungry.

And last but not least the finale to our 5 course meal....
We ended the eveing with one glass of wine too many, and a lot of laughing.

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Happy First Anniversary

Quite honestly, when we first met I did not fall immediately in love with you. It was more like a very strong "like". It was a crazy audition for the crazy renaissance festival. And my cousin Chad, one of your best friends, introduced us.

I've always known Chad was a bit on the weird side. But I didn't realize how weird until we started hanging out more often. And that really made me happy because I'm not the most normal person in the world. (There are just far less photos to prove it; one of the advantages of being the one who holds the camera...)

Over the course of our dating, I learned a lot more about you than I had the 5 years previous that we had just been friends. One of the most interesting facts is that you are indeed Charlie Brown's twin.

Which is okay because I bear a striking resemblance to Lucy.

Our first year of marriage has not been all romance and flowers; I suppose this is appropriate, as we did fall in love at the top of a rollercoaster. However, our wedding day was very romantic (no matter how roller coaster-y the planning of it was), and one of the most wonderful days of my life, and I have you to thank for this.

Our relationship has been anything but boring; we have overcome a lot of obstacles that I am sure that most couples would not have been able to survive. Perhaps the three children have something to do with that. I think our secret is we still make each other laugh. You know that laugh I am talking about...the one that makes your sides ache until you feel you may throw up. That's good laughter.

So our first anniversary has come and gone...but again, the like the memory of our wedding day, it is ingrained in my heart.

I just want to thank you for the specialness of our first anniversary, and recognizing that it is important. I want to thank you for the laughter, and the fights-you ARE a good fighter. I want to thank you for being such a wonderful stepfather and papa to the kids. I want to thank you for making me laugh...but most of all I want to thank you for doing what may seem the impossible at times...loving me no matter what.

Friday, October 07, 2005

Bur Firmly Inserted

Today I had a 'discussion' with a representative at the U.S. Postal Office for providing lousy customer service.

I informed them that it was unnecessary and neither appreciated that they hang up on me for the mere fact that I was calling the "wrong number", which was the number provided to me by the Yellow Pages via internet.

How am I {as a consumer} suppose to know that the number is wrong? And if it is wrong, why not let me know instead of just picking up the phone and hanging up without saying a word, a repeated number of times, which only draws my ire?

I deftly informed them that it is
1. my right as a consumer to call and ask questions before I traipse about the country side trying to find their locale, and then possibly learn that they do not provide the service I'll need without receiving an attitude because I did call.
2. it is also my right as a disgruntled consumer to call and make a viable complaint with relative assurance that my concerns will be heard and respected. Especially if I am not being unreasonable.

After {receiving an apology} and hanging up I realized that my business management courses which have included a course in Quality Management have relevance in my life after all.

Oh, I've always known I've been this snarky, but now I have the words and education in which to back my claims.

Second Hand Smoke

Since our landlords don't mind or care that our neighbors second hand smoke is filling the lungs of my children, and making my home and possessions smell like an ashtray... I wonder if they would mind if I put a load of dog poop in the vents of thier office so that they could smell the inside of my dog's butt.

That seems fair.

Thankfully, we have gracious neighbors who have agreed to smoke outside until we can figure out a way to keep the smoke from coming in to our place [though tonight they forgot]. They've been really nice...unlike the sucky landlord who siphons the money from our bank accounts straight to their grubby little paws.

Yes this IS the same landlord who DID NOTHING for an entire three weeks while my house was flooded with drainage/sewage water and mold began festering in my submerged living room. Ahh the life of a tenant.

Tag I'm It

Somehow I totally missed that I had been tagged with a couple of memes.

This one is from Slush Turtle:

1. It’s not as messy as it used to be
2. I can never shut the door because the door is off the track
3. There is a large selection of re enactment costumes housed here.

1. A vest that was a prop in an independent film my husband starred in
2. My grandmothers wool jacket with a real fur collar.
3. A pair of black pants that I bought for work, but alas I’m unemployed again.

1. My Chuck Taylors
2. A pair of jeans with a rose patch on the thigh.
3. My black and red striped Gap shirt. I bought it when I was 16.

1. A sweater belonging to my husbands late mother
2. Two pink business suits. Yes, as if ONE weren’t enough.
3. An early American corset.

1. I got rid of everything like that about 2 months ago.

1. Black Shoes
2. Coats
2. Purses

1. Pink
2. Black
3. Blue

1. My Sketchers boots
2. My faded bell bottom jeans
2. My pink pajama pants

Double Tagged

This one is from AfricaBleu:

"Let's Talk About You - What Do YOU Think About Me?" (Bette Midler, in "Beaches")

I was living in Idaho on an Air Force base. My son was 2 years old, and I was a stay at home mom running a home daycare.

I was back in Michigan, and just started going to college to get my Associates Degree. I was living a huge mistake, which took me another two years to work myself out of. I was working at a consulting agency for $11.00 an hour. I also bought this computer in 2000. I hate this computer so much.

One year ago today I was getting ready for my wedding [tomorrow]. We had our dress rehearsal and rehearsal dinner. Everything that could be done for the “big day” had been done, so it was all just letting it ride. Oh, and I was also getting pretty ticked off at my husband’s cousins for shoving him in a trunk and writing obscenities all over his body with a permanent marker. Yeah, I’m still not very happy about that.

I was really really lazy. I should have been cleaning the house, and doing my other responsibilities, but I mostly read, played a video game, did some homework, did laundry, and washed the dishes.

I realized how sedentary my life has become as a stay at home mom and decided that I need to exercise before I turn into a blob. I also took time to write in my actual journal, and made an account of what I needed to do for today. And also wrote a letter of intent to Kim's paternal father.

1. Potato Chips and Dip
2. Coke
3. Nachos
4. Coke
5. Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches

1. Magic by Olivia Newton John
2. Life’s What You Make It by Talk Talk
3. Bad to the Bone by George Thoroughgood
4. Personal Jesus by Depeche Mode
5. The Promise by When in Rome

1. Tithe
2. Buy a home and property for my family, build a resort home for friends and family to live/visit
3. Build a daycare and not charge families for bringing their children there.
4. Pay off the debts of family members.
5. Buy a computer. I seriously don’t know what I would do with that amount of cash. I’d probably have an annurism.

1. Mackinac Island
2. Alaska3. France
4. Scotland
5. Brazil

1. Culottes
2. Tube tops
3. Leg warmers
4. Jogging Suit
5. Painted sweatshirts

1. CSI [Las Vegas]
2. Law and Order SVU
3. Extreme Home Makeover
4. Invader Zim
5. Medium

1. Jesus Christ
2. My husband who continually amazes me by putting up with my craziness
3. My children
4. Unexpected wit
5. A clean house

1. My computer to be [I’ll be getting a laptop soon]
2. My music collection
3. Roxy and Tangerine
4. My paints
5. My camera

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Multi-Unit Dwellings Suck Arse

Living in a townhouse has its ups and downs, and right now we are experiencing a definite down.

We do not smoke, but our new neighbors do. And unfortunately the ventilation system in our home is connected to our neighbor, therefore we are the receiving the gift of second hand smoke every night. Right now our house smells like an ashtray and there is nothing I can really do about it.

Our landlord, caring not, says that there isn't anything that they can do--and suggested I get an air purifier.

My thought is that I spend enough money each month to warrant a safe and healthy living environment for myself and my children--which includes not breathing in someone's second hand smoke. Especially since I am allergic to said smoke, and my husband and I both have asthma, and I believe that my son may as well.

I've been living here for 16 months, these people just moved in last week. I seriously think that the landlords need to consider non-smoking and smoking unit arrangements. I also think that I may be making some calls to the health department tomorrow as well.

I have spoken with our neighbors, and they have said they will 'try' to smoke outside...but who knows how long that will last in the middle winter during a snow storm.

How to Declare War With Me

Hide the Boo Berry cereal on me.

I know you're only three years old...but your cunning is masterfully executed.

Fortunately I am taller and weigh more than you.

Prayer Request

I know that some of you out there don't believe as I do, but I do know the power of I'm using my blog as my own personal request board for this one thing...

Can all of you please pray that nothing (financially upsetting) happens between now and next Friday, so that we can allocate my final paycheck from my temporary job towards Kimi's adoption.

I just received a letter in the mail regarding her child support (that we have not been receiving) and I fear the worst is about to happen as the state begins to put the squeeze on her paternal father.

Now that I am not working...things will resume being much more financially difficult. The adoption is not a cheap process, and saving money for it has been near impossible.

Anyway, I just wanted to put the request out there for prayers in order to get this on the way...

Thank you ever so much.

God Bless,


Sweet Talkin'

Warning the following conversation is vile. Anyone choosing to read past this first line is subject to their own chastisement as you have been WARNED. Read at your own risk.

A. I got us an anniversary present...

B. Oh really? What is it?

A. Yeah, it's poop.

B. Oh. Did you make it yourself?

A. Yes...and I sculpted it into a little statue.

B. Ugh..that's uh, nice...

A. Yeah, and you wanna know what I used for the eyes?

B. *hesitates*..umm...peanuts?

A. No... M & M's!!

B. *gagging* You used M & M's? That's sick.

A. Wanna know something else?

B. Not really, but what?

A. I learned something else that my body doesn't digest.

B. Oh...

A. Yes, cucumber seeds. So I'll add that to my list. Raisins, nuts, corn, and cucumber seeds.

B. I think I'm going to be sick.

A. Well...I figure if I can't make you laugh, I can try to make you throw up.

B. Thanks.

A. I love you.

B. I love you too.

Snippet of Cute

Yesterday, while at Barnes and Noble picking out a baby gift, I found a book that aptly describes my youngest daughter. I bought it for the new baby, but I will be purchasing one for Kimi as well.

The line I want to share with you now is as follows:

"In the morning after she gets up, and moves the cat, and brushes her teeth, and combs her ears, and moves the cat, Olivia gets dressed." (Falconer, 2000)

This cracks me up, because my Snoog picks up Tangerine and carries her everywhere, as though the cat does not have legs of its own. What's funny, is that she will all of a sudden decide that the cat is hungry and carry it to the food dish.

The entire story reminds me of Kimi. Every Christmas the kids get one new special book from mom...and this will be hers.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Mid-Wednesday Crazy

Well, the day is not over yet...and there is so much yet to do. However, I did go to the doctor and I am happy to report that George is almost gone. There is but a wee speck of him left on the bottom of my foot. He should be no more by next week.

Which is good because I have been having some pretty treacherously gross dreams in which he falls off my foot in a globular mass and people want to eat him, as in between two pieces of bread. I'll name no names.

Is it physically possible to throw up in your sleep?

Kimi went to daycare today, to give me a break. And I'll admit that I had my second thoughts up until the very last moment. I need to face it, I am not ready to let go. I keep having reservations because I fear people will treat her poorly. But we drive each other crazy.

The child needs to be away from me sometimes, and I her. So...Kassi just give up the stranglehold. I'll try. But I am not ready to go back to work. Not ready at all. Because that would entail taking my grip off the other two as well...and it didn't turn out so well last time.

However, I did manage to get some things done in her absence. For starters, I got George removed, mostly. I also went to Michael's, which for me that store is like Candyland for a child.

I managed to buy myself NOTHING...per usual. However, I did get some nifty things for Kimi since she and I will be spending the majority of our days together. I want that time to be spent at least somewhat constructively. No more sitting in front of the TV all day.

I also picked up the first component of my husband's anniversary gift, even though we aren't suppose to buy each other anything.

Next, I came home and rearranged the play corner in our living room to actually resemble a mini-daycare setting. Books, puzzles, blocks, legos, stringing beads. You know...quiet toys. So The Kim has a place to hang out.

Then Aboo [who had only a half day of school] and I went to Target and I purchased a cute outfit for Saturday night, as well as a plastic bin for Kimi's play corner. And of course some more Clorox Clean-up. You can never have enough of that stuff.

Oh...and 2 boxes of Boo Berry. It only comes out in October, and so this month I will be stocking up. It is my FAVORITE cereal of all time...I don't care if my teeth are blue afterwards.

Then Aboo and I headed to Barnes and Noble where I picked up a baby shower gift, found the book I want to buy The Kim for Christmas [every year each kid gets a new book], and the rest of Caleb's anniversary present even though we said we weren't going to do that.

His anniversary present to me is taking me on a dinner train-overnight- and getting our anniversary portrait done. I'm good with that. Photos ARE paper you know.

So, right now I am on the downside of the day...I still have homework to attend to...both from school and from church. Bible study is tonight, and I want to "wow" them again with my big words and "education".

Last week I totally felt the freak by using words like "presenting" and "proposed"...I'll have to think of some better ones for tonight. I can't help it-I read the dictionary to purposely increase my vocabulary. And I have business management lingo floating around my head all the time.

*ponders* I wonder if I can pull off using "Six Sigma" in a sentence...

Actually the Bible study is really nice...the women there are super. And I am very thankful that I started it up. I just always feel so out of place wherever I go...especially in groups of females. I'm so non female-ish in that respect. I often feel like I have the label "imposter" tattooed on my forehead.

So, I'm out of here...I have to study, make dinner, and hopefully take a shower all within the next 90 minutes. But know that I would prefer to read blogs and take a nap.