Friday, January 28, 2011

Friday Randomness...

So I finally submitted my entry to the Amazon Breakthrough Novel contest.  It only took me four hours to hit the submit button after I edited and re-edited and re-re-edited everything.  Thank you, Petula!!

I was on the phone with my sister this week and she was telling me about this yoga class she was trying.  It was called "Hot Yoga" and yes, it is exactly what it says - yoga done in a really, really hot room.  She said it was the most intense workout she's ever had and that you sweat like a fiend.  I am so proud of her for doing it but let me just say that I could NEVER do it!  Yoga is not my thing to begin with but to do it for 90 minutes in 120 degrees?  No thank you.  So you keep it up, sister!

I am getting bored with Entrecard.  No, nothing funky has happened to my computer since I came back to e-card dropping but I am just bored with having to do the drops.  It takes an hour, which isn't bad, and I'm enjoying the traffic to my site but really, i can think of other things I could do that I'd enjoy in an hour.

Monday I am going out with Nick's girlfriend Beckah to get our hair done and then do lunch.  Can I just say how excited I am about this?  It will be like having a daughter for the day!  Seriously, I am giddy about this.  I get a little girl time AND hopefully get a sassy new haircut.

I am back to my Coca Cola addiction.  I mean, all I want, all day long is a fizzy, ice cold glass of coke.  This is not a good thing...


Thursday, January 27, 2011

Dear Mother Nature:

You know, living in the South for the last 15 years has had me sort of pleased with the weather.  Granted, I could use a little less heat in the summer months but for the most part, I have enjoyed living in this part of the country.  But as I sit here in somewhat normal winter temperatures, I turn on the news and am horrified at how things are going up North.

I have family up in New York and they are getting SLAMMED with this winter weather.  It is unbelievable.  I watch the images on the news every morning and cannot believe the amount of snow there is or the temperature!  If anything like that happened here we would all be dead!  No one here knows how to deal with the snow and ice.  We get stuck at home for DAYS when only a few inches of snow falls.  

Which leads me to ask another question:  Why, oh why, can the meteorologists, the WEATHER MEN, give us an accurate forecast where snow is concerned here in the south?  I mean, when a New York weather man says "Hey, expect 8-10 inches of snow", you know what they get?  8-10 inches of snow!  Here, when there is even a CHANCE of snow, they cannot predict it with any degree of certainty and it puts everyone in a state of panic.  

So please, for my poor family and friends up in New York, could you please stop the snow for a little while?  Just let some of it melt before sending any more their way!  And for me?  Please find us a weather man who can actually tell us with some degree of accuracy how much snow we can expect.

Thank you!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Dead is not the same as being on vacation!

Okay, so we have a cat.  He actually sort of adopted us many, many years ago; we are definitely not cat people but as a young cat, he got stuck on our fence and Frank saved him and so the cat just never left.  As a matter of fact, once he was down from the fence, he moseyed up to our front porch and cried for almost 24 hours straight!  Frank was like "Don't feed him or he'll never leave!" 

We fed him.

He didn't leave.

Granted, our landlord does not allow us to have indoor pets so the cat became an outdoor cat and he was fine with that.  He likes roaming the neighborhood and we came to understand that we were not the only "home" he had.  Actually, one of the times that he went on an extended "vacation", the boys were young and they were upset that the cat had disappeared.  So I put them in the car and we drove all around the neighborhood yelling "Fluffy!  Fluffy!" in hopes of finding him.  Yes, his name is Fluffy.  Actually, it's Fluffy Meowington.  So Frank came home and we're all near tears.  "The cat's gone!"  Well, Frank stepped out on to the porch and looked around and yelled "Cat!" and the darn cat came strolling out from the yard across the street and was like "Hey, how'ya doin?"

Damn cat.

Frank refused to call him Fluffy.  He thought it was a stupid name and degrading for the cat.  Sure, like the cat has an opinion.  Anyway, long story short (sort of) the cat has been MIA for a few weeks now and I have a feeling that this is no longer a "vacation" but that he may be dead.  He doesn't normally stay away this long and tonight it was just me and the boys at home and I'm like "Has anyone noticed that the cat's been gone for a while now?"  And they were both very blase about the whole thing and Nick was like "Oh, he's probably off on one of his vacations".  Michael went out and put some food in the cat's bowl in hopes that he'll return.

I'm a little sad.  As I said, I'm not really a cat person and actually, I'm a bit allergic to cats so I was never particularly close to Fluffy but it would make me sad if he's actually gone.  I wish that the boys actually had a little bit more feeling about the whole situation.  

I'm about ready to get in the car and start driving around...

Monday, January 24, 2011

Just keep writing...just keep writing...

So I am sort of in a writing frenzy right now.  Well, sort of an all-things-writing frenzy.  I am finally printing out and putting together a portfolio of all of my writings from Examiner, eHow, Bukisa and other miscellaneous sites.  I thought it was about time that I had things on hard copy. 

I am also taking on a new position with; I am no longer the local homeschool examiner but am now the Books examiner.  I will be writing on womens fiction books.  I'm kind of excited about that because I am always reading and now I can write about them.

I also just got approved to write for Suite 101.  I haven't submitted anything to them as of yet, but that will start this week, too.  I am also in the process of submitting blogs posts to the Mouse for Less Guest Blog.  They are a great community of Disney fanatics (like myself) and they are offering some awesome incentives to writers who contribute over the next three months.  You can read one of my first posts to them by clicking HERE.

This week starts up the entry period for Amazon's Breakthrough Novel Award.  I will be submitting to that.  Maybe.  Hopefully.  

We'll see.

I was sitting here watching the "Sex and the City" movie and I sort of sat here thinking that I wouldn't mind being Carrie Bradshaw.  Not the slutty part of Carrie Bradshaw but the writing part of her.  I'm not looking to be the next Nora Roberts or anything (although that would be nice) but I wouldn't mind having a column that was my own that I was making money from and maybe having a book made from it.  That would be a nice gig. in the meantime I've got a big binder full of my articles, a blog with almost 1000 posts, several completed manuscripts, multiple (many, many multiple) partial manuscripts and onward I trudge.

Or type...

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Is it rude or honest?

With technology that astounds me, I am sitting here watching and listening to my 11 year old play his Xbox while talking on a headset to his friend who lives six miles away and they are playing the game together.  WILD!

Their games get pretty intense and there have been time where they have argued while playing that I have had to step in and tell Michael to tone it down or to just shut off the game.  Honestly, I remember when playing a video game meant laughter, not yelling.  So today he is playing the game and he gets a phone call from a different friend. He (meaning Michael) was clearly annoyed that this boy was calling him and so I stood by and listened to the conversation.

Basically Michael told him to stop calling and messaging him so much because he was playing another game with another friend and could not play with him right now.  Apparently, this boy had been trying to contact him via the Xbox for a while and Michael wasn't responding because he was already involved in a game.  He then went on to tell this boy to not spend so much time playing the game and obsessing about it because that's not a good thing to do.  I was kind of impressed with that statement and then dumbfounded because HE spends way too much time obsessing about this game!

I guess even at 11 they get the concept of "Do as I say, not as I do".

He was firm with this boy and brutally honest but there was a part of me that thought that I would be devastated if someone spoke that bluntly to me.  Actually, I HAVE been devastated by someone speaking that bluntly to me.  Then I have to remember that I am a girl and that maybe boys talk and respond differently.  

I so still don't get the whole boy thing...I think like a girl and that's all there is to it!

Friday, January 21, 2011


Honestly, I am just so dang tired!!

Frank is still sick and so this morning it was up to me to get Michael up and ready for school and drive him there.  So I got up, got ready and was going out to start the car when Michael was like "I don't feel so good..."  So I'm like "What's the matter?" Well, long story short he felt like he was going to throw up.  
Needless to stay, he stayed home from school today and I put my jammies back on and went back to sleep.


I felt kind of sluggish about the whole thing but it felt so good.  Now, here I sit at ten p.m. and really, I could go to sleep right now.  

Ever have a sluggish day like this??

Thursday, January 20, 2011

And I got up early, why?

So today was the big unemployment review interview to see if I still qualify for my unemployment benefits.  I am at the end of the road with it, basically, because I am about 6 weeks in to the extended benefits so at the end of 20 weeks, there is no more for me.

I had been freaking out about this appointment and made sure that all of my files were in order and that I had everything that I was going to need.  In the letter that was sent to me, it merely asked for my job search records for the "previous" weeks.  I took that to mean two...basically I just brought everything from January.

So I get there 30 minutes early and get on line.  I was definitely in the minority - I was the only person there that was actually DRESSED like I wanted a job!  I was a bit shocked.  There were already twenty plus people in line and when I got up to the desk, I showed the receptionist my letter and she directed me to an office to my left.  I walked over to it and there was one guy sitting at a desk.  That was it.  He told me to come in, we shook hands and he held up a piece of paper for me and said "Have you ever filled one of these out before?"  I'm like "No" so he explains to me that I need to fill in two job searches for each week listed and they go back to mid-December.  I explained that I only brought January with me and he's like "You're a smart girl, you'll remember".


He asked me, then, to go out to the waiting area and fill it out.  So I did.  I left the week between Christmas and New Year's empty because, honestly, I did not look for a job that week and the info for the week before is pretty vague because I had no idea where I applied to.  So I go back in to his office and he looks at the form and slides it back over to me.  Then, he leans in pretty close and whispers "You see that there, Stacey?" Meaning, the week I left blank.  "You're gonna want to go back out there and cross that out and put something in."  I told him that I didn't look that week and he's like "Yes you did" and I'm like "Um...No, I didn't" and he's like "I'm sure you go fix that."

Are you as shocked and dumbfounded by this as I am???

Let's just leave it at I left three minutes later...

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

I'm buying stock in Lysol...

So this morning I get up to get Michael ready for school and Frank was telling me how he wasn't feeling well last night and had to take some Nyquil and how now he was all achy.


Now, wives, I'm sure you'll make LOUSY patients.  So I got him moving and got him to the Urgent Care by 8:45 a.m.  While I was there with him, I had the doctor check out my eye which was in quite a lot of pain this morning.  

Long story short, no strep for Frank and they were unsure of the flu.  But basically, the doctor said that if it was the flu, too bad, so sad.  Seriously.  He refused to give Frank the Tamiflu and his reasoning was that they only give that in cases of people with special needs.  We, apparently, did not meet that criteria.  Although, to be honest, the last time Frank had the flu (like 3 or 4 years ago) we got the Tamiflu (at $100 for the script!) and it NOTHING for him.  He was in bed, moaning for 2 weeks.  So I'm not sure if I'm happy or sad that they didn't give it to him.

As for me, the doctor gave me a prescription for a steroid eye drop and when I went to the pharmacy to get it filled, the pharmacist was like "You know this is $120, right?"  I almost had a heart attack!  Luckily, we have short-term medical coverage so I got it for $3.00.  Quite the difference!

But for now, I am stuck at home with a husband who CLEARLY is not going to be an easy-going patient.  Although he has volunteered to sleep on the couch because I have to get up early and leave early to go to my unemployment review in the morning.  So I guess I can cut him some slack for now and be a nice wife.

For now...LOL!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Finally, a reason to have Verizon...

I'm not a fan of cell phones.  Sure, they are convenient, but personally, I don't have a need to be on the phone everywhere I go.  I don't text.  Basically, all I want is a phone that I can use when I absolutely HAVE to talk to someone.

We have a family plan with Verizon.  It cost a small fortune.  Now, I know, I know, I could probably find a better deal but most of our family are on Verizon so there are those perks and really, I'm locked in to my contract.  

So that brings us to today.  Frank came home this morning after driving Michael to school and told me that his phone died.  It literally had fallen apart.  So we go to the Verizon store and find him a phone that with the mail-in rebate would be free.  Sweet.  Now, Nick's phone is also falling apart (again, literally) and so we find him a phone that would have been $30 after the rebate.  The salesgirl tells me that she'll give it to me for $1.00 after the rebate because someone just returned theirs and it was hardly used.  Sweet, again!  

Now the deal with the rebates is that they are mail in so you have to actually PAY for the phones.  So our total today was $75 and change but once I mail in the rebate forms, we will get $100 in rebates.  

So I just MADE $25 for getting two new phones.

Sweet, indeed.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Medical Drama Monday...

So I have a terrible habit of falling asleep with my contacts in.  I don't know why I do it; these new contacts are just so darn comfortable that I forget that I'm wearing them!  Also, I hate how blind I am without them and my glasses annoy me.

Anyway, I got up yesterday morning and my right eye felt irritated but nothing out of the ordinary.  I got ready for church and left.  Well, 90 minutes later, my eye was actually in pain.  I got home and looked in the mirror and could not believe how red my eye was.  So I peeled my contacts out and had Frank look at my eye and he's like "You need to get that looked at."


Just great.

Here it is a Sunday and I go over to the CVS Minute Clinic.  Now, I don't know if any of you have ever used them but I actually love the Minute Clinic.  Very efficient, fairly inexpensive.  So I sign in electronically and when you do that, there is no place to write what you are there for.  I wait for a few minutes and my name gets called and the nurse practitioner has her back to me when I walk in and she starts introducing herself and took one look at me and was like "So what's up with that eye?"

Yes, it looked THAT bad.

So...I have pink eye.  What am I, 6?  I don't know ANY adults who get pink eye.  Just me.  Twice in six months.  How crazy is that??  Now, I cannot wear contacts for 7 days, I'm stuck in my glasses and I don't like it.  

Today I woke up and my eye still hurts, is still irritated and is just generally uncomfortable.  I was hoping for a quick recovery but obviously that is not going to be the case.  

So this is me...with pink eye...eating way too much birthday fettucine and cake.  

Is January over yet??

Sunday, January 16, 2011

The Festivities are Finally Coming to an End!

We have the last of our family's birthday's this week.  I am SOOOOO excited to be done with it all.  December and January are rough - it seems that there is just always something to do, something to prepare for, something to cook and bake for.  I am so ready to be done making cakes, you have no idea!

Tonight I am taking my wonderful husband out to dinner.  We are going with friends and I am just excited to be going out with other adults.  Michael is out with friends (thank you A.D.!) and Nick is out podcasting.  Tomorrow we will have the big birthday hooplah that will start with McDonald's for lunch (No school, so that was Michael's choice for lunch), followed by a party with our Disney friends (aka the Mouseclub) in the afternoon and then a big birthday dinner! 

Between all of the carbs, cake, cookies...I am going to be on overload!  Thank God I just got a treadmill because I am so going to be starting that up on Tuesday morning!!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

I miss my Felix the Cat Slippers...

Sure, they are ridiculous and would look even more so on me at age 42, I still miss them and still want them!

With our Netflix on demand we found some episodes of the Felix the Cat cartoon and that had me remembering my slippers which, in turn, had me missing them.  Hard to believe that I'm a grown up, right?

And you know what's worse?  I cannot FIND them anywhere!  I know, right?  How could this popular item NOT be available at stores everywhere!  I found this picture on line but not the slippers.  

Sigh...Childhood memories are a good thing...

Friday, January 14, 2011

Sing out loud!!

I have a horrific singing voice.  

I don't hum well.

I don't really even whistle.

BUT...I sing in the car.


When we were still living up in New York and before we had kids, I would be driving around, doing my thing and my sister's first husband would always tell me that the places he saw me driving and how I was singing - emphatically - in the car.

Yes, emphatically.

I put some emotion in it.  There are hand gestures, facial ordinary sing-a-long, I can tell you that.  

So today I'm in the car and flipping through the stations and I land on Alanis Morisette's "You Oughta Know" and I'm sorry...ladies, should you EVER need to get out some aggression and anger, sing along to THAT song.  A world of tension left my body by the time I was done.

Ah, nothing like a good angry-woman song to make you feel better.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Unemployment Interview

So I did get approved for the extended unemployment benefits.  I am so thankful for it; it's the only way we have survived this last year.  In the mail the other day I got a letter that told me that I have to go down to the unemployment office next Thursday for a review.

Has anyone ever had to go to one of these?  I am unsure what to expect.  I have my log of information on places that I have inquired at or submitted applications to but I guess what I am more interested in is what exactly the interview itself will be like.  

The appointment is first thing in the morning so I am hoping that will work in my favor - that the unemployment "agent" will be in a good mood because no one has argued with them yet.  Does that make sense?

So if you've experienced this interview, can you let me know what to expect?  thank you!!! 

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Okay, maybe NOW life will return to normal...

Okay so the winter storm has moved out of here and although it is painfully cold outside, the roads are a bit more drivable today.  Considering that we only got ice, this is a huge deal in the South.

School was on today with a two hour delay.  Michael would have preferred another day home but Monday will be another holiday so he'll get a three day weekend and that will make him smile.  I love that little dimpled smile.  He will be eleven next week and I just cannot seem to wrap my brain around that just quite yet.

Nick is a man on the go and I have to say that I am kind of beaming with pride here.  He is going to start taking some classes next week to help him get hired on full-time with the company that he has been interning with for the last couple of months.  Between that and working on growing his Podcast, I think that by this time next year he is going to be doing A-OK for himself.  

Frank is working.  I have been in the writing zone and loving it and after the birthdays next week, life will really be pretty normal around here.  I am SO looking forward to that.

So what about you?  Now that the holidays are officially over, and, God willing, you are not buried in three feet of snow, have you found your life returning to normal?

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Just for Giggles...

Did you know that you can search for people's mug shots online?  Seriously, it doesn't have to be a celebrity, it can be anybody.  

I found such a mug shot.

And let me just say, I just may make it next year's Christmas card! 

Have the courage to be who you are...

...and own up to the things that you say.

A couple of years ago, when I first started this blog, I had written a post about my horrendous experience with Jet Blue.  I mean, I was annoyed, I wrote about it on MY blog.  Well, an "anonymous" person left a rather lengthy comment about what an idiot I am, how selfish I am, blah, blah, blah...I did not post the comment, mainly because I didn't feel the need to publish it.  Well, this person commented again, still anonymous, and then ripped me apart for not publishing their comment.

A good friend of mine who is also a blogger told me that this is fairly common.  Idiots with nothing better to do than leave insulting comments on people's blogs for no reason and to do it ANONYMOUSLY.  Why?  

Because they are cowards.

Get a life, Anonymous.  Seriously.  If you want to rag on a person, at least back up your words by being big enough to show your identity.

Only during that Jet Blue incident did I stop allowing comments, once I let comments come again I have published everything sent to me.  Actually, one time my sister and I had a major disagreement and she left me some unflattering comments here.  I published them.  Why?  Because this is who I am.  I don't have anything to hide.

Do you, Anonymous???

Oh, and one last thought to ponder:  I know that I certainly have better things to do with my time than read the blogs of people that I don't like.  Seriously, if you don't like me or what I write, go away and get a life.

Just sayin..

Monday, January 10, 2011

The Big Non-Snow Event of 2011

So I canceled the trip to Great Wolf Lodge.


I did some extra food shopping and have enough food here to last through the end of the month.  And what for?


The snow was supposed to start around dawn and here we are at 8:40 at night and I think I counted about five flakes.  Actually, in the area of where I was supposed to be got around eight inches of snow so it was a good thing that we didn't go.  But I have to admit that I'm a little disappointed that we didn't get anything around here by me. 

How often do you hear people say that?  Gee, I wish we got some snow?  No one is saying that anywhere this winter.  Schools closed early, they are delayed for tomorrow for a non-snow event.  Kind of anticlimactic, right? 

I could have gone for a snow day...I'm just sayin.

*UPDATE*  We got ice.  A lot of ice.  So I got an "ice" school today!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Randomness...Disappointment...and Inappropriateness

So we went to visit Frank's cousin today and although we deeply wish it was under better circumstances, it was a great visit.  She is the cousin who I love the most and always considered her to be more like a sister than a cousin.  We are all praying for a speedy recovery for her.

On our way home, we stopped at a couple of outlets.  For YEARS we have driven passed them on the way to and from visits to family and friends and finally decided to take the time and stop and see what they had.


Oh, my gosh.  These places were ridiculous.  One boasted being the largest outlet store in the world and essentially, it was a crap house.  It was big, there was a lot of stuff, it smelled like someone died and it was full of crap.  The prices sucked, the quality of merchandise sucked and basically, my skin felt like it was crawling off of my body.

Next we went to the Tanger Outlet.  Has anyone been to this?  I guess it's an outlet for snooty people because to me, everything was overpriced and it was all stores that I wouldn't shop at.  We're not yuppies or preppy OR snooty so none of the stores held any appeal.  VERY disappointed.

We're supposed to get snow here tomorrow.  North Carolina can NEVER forecast a storm and what was originally supposed to hit tomorrow night is now supposed to start around dawn.  My trip to Great Wolf Lodge is canceled and there's a good chance that school will be canceled, Frank has already announced that he won't go to work and I am counting how much Melatonin a person can take to sleep for 24 hours straight.  

Snow?  Really?  Again??

And finally, Frank is at work the other night and he is painting a large commercial building with 30 plus offices.  It was around 5:30, most people were gone for the day and some woman comes up to him to say what a great job he's doing and how good everything looks.  So he thanks her and turns to go back to work and she's like "Can I ask you something?" and he's like "Sure".

Are you ready for this?

She asked, "Is it true that all painters have rock hard abs?"

Are you freakin kidding me???  

Luckily my husband is CLUELESS to cues from the opposite sex (and I have accepted this after 22 years together!) and he just looked at her and said "Well, maybe 20 years ago but not anymore!" and went back to work!

Now I want nothing more than to go and smack this little hussy in the face!  I mean, really?  Rock hard abs?  I know that Frank is very fit and I also know that at 47 years old, he is no Johnny Depp.  This woman was just a bit too forward for my comfort and really, I just want him to be done with this stupid job and get the heck out of there.

He thought it was funny and all I could think was, one look at me and no man would ever wonder if I had rock hard abs...

Saturday, January 8, 2011

I'm actually finding my happy place...

Okay, so yesterday I had my 4 1/2 hours of "me" time.  I spent a large part of that on the phone because I didn't unplug it in time.  Believe me, I've learned my lesson.  

Then, believe it or not, I went food shopping.  I actually get a perverse kind of joy out of this task because I LOVE to hear how much money I have saved with my coupons.  The store I went to was doing super double coupons so between those deals, coupons and the store specials, I saved over $90!!  I was actually a little bit giddy as I skipped out of the store.

Back at home, I ate my lunch (don't be grossed out but I ate a frozen pizza for one and one cup of that Easy Mac stuff - comfort foods) and watched an episode of "Psych" and then did some reading AND some writing.  All in all, it was a good day.

Today I had the pleasure of staying in my jammies until around dinner time.  I would have stayed longer but I was grossing myself out and needed to shower and get changed.  Of course, I just changed back in to a clean pair of jammies and did what I had been doing all day - vegging.  It feels so good.

Tomorrow we are having to get up early and head out of town to visit one of Frank's cousin's who had a stroke this week.  She's pretty young and we're all pretty upset about it.  I'm kind of selfishly glad that I had a couple of days to chill so that I can be a pleasant person tomorrow.

Now excuse me while I go and bake some chocolate chip cookies and make my house smell yummy and make my tummy happy...

Friday, January 7, 2011

Netflix on demand ROCKS!!

So Nick got us the Wii for Christmas and once I recovered from my virtual bowling injury, I have discovered something else awesome about the beloved can get Netflix right on it!

I kid you NOT!

One of the things that I really wanted for Christmas was the TV show "Psych" on DVD - all four seasons.  Well, Nick put all of those seasons on to the Wii through Netflix and now I can watch any episode I want, any time I want!  I am loving this.  

Frank used to watch a show called "Mystery Science Theater 3000" on Comedy Central.  Well, this show is on Netflix now, too, and even as I type, he and Michael are sitting in the living room laughing like a bunch of loons over this show.

I cannot even begin to explain how much joy this simple little thing has brought to our lives.  Kind of sad now that I read what I'm writing but honestly, I am just enjoying being able to watch what I want when I want...well, almost everything.  Not everything is on the demand portion of Netflix but the selection is pretty sweet.

Just what I need, more things to keep me unmotivated and on the couch!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

It's just another day...

So...I snapped.

I yelled.

I cried.

All while in the shower.

It didn't make me feel any better, though.  Frank didn't say a word and while I was still sort of mid-rant (actually, I was taking a breath) he left.  Very anti-climatic.  You know, I would have preferred a little yelling...a little snippiness...a little...SOMETHING!

So yes, I definitely do need a break, some time away.  I just don't see that happening any time soon.   I'm going with a friend this Sunday to Great Wolf Lodge...with Michael...and her kids.  Not quite the break that I need but a change of scenery nonetheless.  

Tomorrow, Friday, could quite possibly be the day that I get SOME time alone.  If all goes as plans, and if often doesn't, I should have around 4 1/2 hours alone in my house.  I don't have any one particular thing that I want to do, I just want to be alone.  I may unplug the phone...just to play it safe.


Wednesday, January 5, 2011

I'm not crazy, I'm just a little unwell...

I used to LOVE that song!  Remember it?  Matchbox Twenty?  Anyway, it really sums up how I am feeling lately except for the fact that I FEEL like I am going crazy.  Why?  


The holidays are always chaotic and my birthday is in December, Frank and the boys have January birthdays so really from early December to late January it is crazy around here.  Add to that the craziness of November where we had Thanksgiving and a trip to Florida.  Add to THAT the van drama, the unemployment drama, the bathroom drama and more unemployment drama and all of the craziness with graduation and I have not had a truly sane moment since around March of 2009.  Maybe.

Right now, I feel like I am being pulled in a million different directions with anyone and everyone making demands of me and I am getting nothing in return.  In the last eight weeks we have driven 20 hours round trip to Florida, we've done 6 hours round trip back and forth to Charlotte, I did a cleaning gig that was almost 2 hours away and so that was 4 hours round trip, I did a day trip to Wilmington last week that was 5 hours round trip.  And you know what?  I HATE ROAD TRIPS!  

I baked a boatload of desserts over Christmas and for Nick's birthday yesterday and I don't like baking!  I made an Italian feast yesterday after I had made a ginormous Italian feast for Christmas Eve (where I told EVERYONE that I did not want to)...and really, for those of you who think it's great that I know how to cook let me just say this...I cook because I HAVE to not because I WANT to!  Big difference!  I am blessed that cooking comes easily to me but really, I've been doing it since I was a child so the thrill is gone.  Long gone.

I have not had hardly any time to myself in I don't even know how long.  All I want is a day, ONE FREAKIN DAY, alone in my house.  Is it ever going to happen?  Apparently not.  Today was supposed to be that day but Nick's plans got canceled, Frank forgot to do some paperwork so he didn't leave for work until around 11 and then I went and had lunch with a friend and even though we had a great time visiting, by the time I got home, Nick was still here and then not long after I got here, Michael got home.  I had to do some prep work for a writing class tomorrow and then go to Staples, then to our weekly bible study group and now we're home, having a late dinner and I'm trying to get him wound down and ready for bed.  By the time that happens, Frank will be home from band practice and want to talk which will keep me from going to bed.  By the time I actually GO to bed, I will have to medicate myself so that I can actually fall asleep and get a couple of hours of sleep in before he comes to bed and snores until I want to kill myself.


So what it all boils down to is I am being deprived of my privacy, my alone time, my ME time and all I am getting is people coming at me from every angle to tell me what they think that I HAVE to do:  make this, go here, take this class, show me how to do this,  I want THIS for dinner, buy me never seems to end.  All I'm asking for is a little peace and quiet before someone is visiting me in a padded cell.

Is that really too much to ask???

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Nineteen years in thirty seconds...

Today, my boy turned 19.  If possible, I was more emotional about it than I was about 18.  He requested an Italian feast for dinner (as usual) and so I spent most of today and part of last night cooking, baking and preparing.  Tonight after dinner, I took out his first baby book to share with his girlfriend and it was a bit surreal to sit and look at the baby and then look up and see the man.

Back in June when he graduated and there was the slide show that showed his entire life in 30 seconds, it really represented how fast time flies.  Then Frank had to go and mention that one day our 10 year old would be 19 and I almost flew over the table to smack him.

First, I am sad that time has gone so quickly and that there are no more of those sweet moments like there were when the boys were little.  Now the moments are different - not always sweet and usually quite annoying.  I am sad that this phase of my life is over - I'm no longer the mom to little boys, I have a young man, an adult.  Maybe that is selfish to make it about me but really, it feels strange to know that I am old enough to have an almost 20 year old son!

I don't want to be 20 again, mind you, but it might be nice to not be THIS old!

But enough about me...Happy Birthday, Nick!!!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Maybe it's a generational thing...

A long, long time ago, I had a falling out with my cousin.  At the time, she was living with my grandmother and even though my grandmother tried to be fair when possible, for a while, she clearly took a side - and it wasn't mine.  As time went on and things were back to being good between us, any time we talked on the phone, she would mention my cousin.  Not "You should call your cousin" or anything like that, she just found a way to insert my cousin's name in to the conversation like "Oh, so-and-so did this" or "So-and-so went here".  Honestly, I could have cared less and I wanted to say to my grandmother that I really didn't want to hear what my cousin was doing, but I kept it to myself.

A couple of years ago, Frank and I had a falling out with one of his relatives.  The whole family was aware of it and this person pretty much bad-mouthed us to anyone and everyone that would listen.  Clearly, his parents knew of this but they try to be like Switzerland and stay neutral.  But in the last year or so, my mother in law has been constantly bringing this person in to our conversations.  At first I thought it was just me over-reacting (imagine that!) but clearly, each and every time I talk to her, she tells me what is going on with this relative - like "Oh, so-and-so called me the other day" or "Oh, I just got off the phone with so-and-so".


Why do I need to know this?  I am a good conversationalist.  I am pretty awesome at keeping a conversation going without people having to bring up individuals who are no longer a part of my life. 

When I mentioned this to Frank recently, he got really, really angry and was like "The next time she does that (meaning his mother), give the phone to me!"  I have not.  I don't feel like he needs to yell at his mother over this but then again, there is no nice way for me to say to my mother in law that this relative of hers is essentially dead to me and I don't want to hear about her ever again.  

How do you stop the awkwardness??

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Boring start to the New Year...

It was a pretty rainy, miserable day here today.  I got up early, went to church and then came home to begin the process of clearing away all of the holiday debris until next year.

Normally we leave the Christmas tree up through Nick's birthday but I had just about had enough of it by today.  It is now out by the curb and most of the furniture is moved back to where it belongs.  The outside lights still have to come down but that will have to wait until it is actually dry outside.

I had an interesting conversation with a friend the other day and while discussing a situation I was involved with with another friend, she was like "You need to cut some of these people out of your life!" and I believe that she is right.  This year, I am no longer going to sit back and let people make me feel bad about myself or manipulate me so that they can get their way.  Someone tried to tell me the other day that I was a bad person...actually, no, that's not accurate, they were trying to tell me that they were BETTER than me, a better Christian than me because they open their kitchen up to people and show them how to make things and I don't.  Fine, I don't deny it; I don't enjoy teaching people how to cook.  I don't believe that it is something that is mentioned in the Bible or something that I should have to feel bad about.  

So I don't.

Jenn, over at My Kids are My World wrote a great post about not making resolutions but about making 2011 about forgiveness.  I think that is a great idea and something that we all need to do more of.  This year I don't want to waste time feeling bad about me or bad about the people who let me down - but by the same token, I am also going to make 2011 about eliminating toxic people from my life.  

Some people are easy to phase out, others, not so much.  When you live 600 miles away from someone, it's easy, five miles? Not so much.  I can only hope that I can do it without malice, without making it in to a "you did this, so I'm doing that" type of situation.  I hope that I can have GRACE when people do not do things my way or perhaps don't do what I want them to do.  Because really, that's not them doing something wrong, that's ME being SELFISH.

So let's add not being selfish to the forgiveness theme, too.  What about you?  Remember, NOT a resolution but what can you do to make your life better this year where people in your life are concerned?