Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Miles From Anywhere

I've been on a writing roll today so I thought to my self, "Self, why not jump on that long neglected little blog of yours and hammer out a little of what's been happening?" Okay, here goes.

I've been quiet on here and in a bit of a slump (re: BIG slump) because I cast off everything that I was comfortable with and all complacency and took a big leap. I left my home, job(s), boyfriend, friends, school and packed up my kids, moved to Iowa and began a new chapter. This chapter is kind of an interlude more than anything. A buckle-down and get serious before I get to jump off to my next adventure. I moved in with my mother so that I could focus on school and my new plan of becoming a teacher.

This might seem like rash or impulsive behavior but I gave it a LOT of thought. I have been toiling in the design world for a very long time. It's an awful field. It's great when you have the perfect position, but they are few and far between, highly competitive and work you to the bone for not a very good compensation. I started to not love it. What I did love was volunteering at my kids' school. The more I was there and getting to know the students and staff, the happier and more fulfilled I was. I wondered if there was a job that could give me that and...)BAM( It hit me! I could teach. The rest is history.

I keep telling myself that even though we left everything we loved, it's all temporary. It's been one of the hardest transitions of my life. I thought about blogging about it all before, taking a fish out of water angle on it (city mouse to country mouse type thing) but I don't really have all these fun anecdotes. It's not really that kind of place. I've isolated myself because I don't know how to relate to people here.

The richest and most rewarding parts of all this happen here, in our house. My kids had a good school before, but now they have more dedicated staff and educators. The teachers up here aren't stretched as thin and it makes such a huge difference. My mother and I had a very strained relationship in my adult years for various reasons, but now we are closer than I thought we could be. We've become a parenting team (of sorts) for my kids and a pretty great one.

I'm trudging through the day to day and mounds of schoolwork trying to balance kids, schedules, freelance work, housework, yard work and some creative outlets. I'm not exactly counting down the days until we are ready to break free, but I keep a watchful eye on that calendar. The kids are doing great in school but are no more successful in social aspects here than I am. We are all in a kind of stasis together holding our collective breaths.

I hope to impress upon them through this experience that realizing your dreams takes sacrifice. That their family will always support them. I hope they are grateful for the richness of their lives and the novel experiences that they have been so lucky to have thus far. It should lessen the void left in us from when we departed our beloved city. Just a bit.

Monday, November 17, 2014


I'm often baffled as to why I can't seem to incur a "normal" injury if some injury HAS to happen. If I get a pinched nerve in my neck, it's not from straining to lift something heavy. No, that would be understandable. It has to be something that makes people point and laugh at me or just plain not believe it. The last time I had a pinched nerve in my neck, it was because I opened a cabinet and an unsecured package of marshmallows flew out, hitting me in the face, causing me to jerk back in an unnatural way and my muscles to seize. I was out of commission for three days because of marshmallows.

Yesterday, I had a similar attack. I was heating up some leftover pizza from Waldo Pizza for lunch. I had taken the kids there the day before because, well....it's a favorite of ours. I got a combo pizza and got the kids cheese crusts. I was heating my combo slices and getting drinks ready for lunch when I heard the pizza sizzling a bit in the microwave. I pulled the microwave door open which is mounted above the oven in my house. There was an abrupt *POP* and a renegade piece of food flew out of the microwave and landed upon my chest, right in the spot a necklace pendant would sit. I felt my skin scalding and sizzling immediately as I tried to grab the piece off. It was found to be a black olive coated in sizzling, melted cheese. There was still smeared cheese remnants searing the already flaring flesh on my chest.

I got the rest cleaned off (after losing several layers of epidermis) and treated the area with a healing salve. It was a fairly serious burn but that didn't stop my children from laughing and teasing me. This morning they sweetly told me "Olive you, mom!" Before bounding into school. I'm on strike from the microwave.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Parents Who Slack....Watch Your Back.

I'm in full on RANT mode tonight....target? LAZY PARENTS. Look, I know how hectic life can get. Believe me. I DO. It's hard managing kids, a full time job, housework, bills, doctor appointments, school activities, sports, menus, shopping, and try to still maintain a personal life. I GET IT. But I'm a one (wo)man show here and seem to manage a fairly decent balance. I'm not some miraculous wonder. Sometimes....my floors stay a little dirty. Sometimes....laundry stacks up. Sometimes....I miss a deadline and have to pay a late fee. Really not the end of the world.

You wanna know what would be the end to me? My kids looking back at their childhood and not remembering their mom being invested in them. Them thinking at any point that I didn't really care what they did. For me, it's important that they know that I care about EVERY TINY DETAIL ABOUT EVERYTHING THEY DO. Why is that? Hrm....because it's my fucking job. I'm their mom. If I don't notice or care, then somebody else will at some point and who knows who they will turn to just to get that. If they get it at home....then they need not look. This is second to my point.

I recently decided to UP my game a little in the mom world. The boy is doing amazingly well with his behavior and it's freed me up to involve myself a bit more in school activities and such. As I help out on the PTA and with the Girl Scout troop....I can't help but look around and wonder....where the fuck is everyone?! I know there are a TON of stay at home moms out there and two parent families that could spare a parent for a meeting or two. The involvement is minimal or not at all. The board members are begging for help. This is our kids' school! They spend most of their time there during the week. It seems weird to me that parents can be so hands off about their kids' activities, education and community.

These are usually the same parents that show up for the planned activities for the school and complain about how "unorganized" everything is because of a lack of volunteers and grab up all the freebies that others have busted their asses doing fundraisers to provide. It's vile. It makes me angry as fuck but it also sets my resolve even more to work harder, participate more, give all I can to my community and kids. Maybe I could inspire ONE parent along the way. Maybe my hanging out a few more minutes in the daycare to joke with some kids or recommend books to them doesn't do much. Maybe handing out popcorn at movie night up at the school seems meager. I don't really care either way. My kids see their mom jumping in where help is needed. They see that I interact with their peers as well as my own. They see that doing things for others is it's own reward. They also see that I love them enough to integrate myself into each aspect of their world.

That is what being a parent is all about. If you want your kids to become something great, then show them how to be great. You are their only example and teacher when it comes to their character. Get off your ass and get to work. Just because they are out of diapers, doesn't mean your job is done. C'mon parents....be better.....I'm watching.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Bitchface Tuesday

"Yay! I'm in a parade!" Bitchface
It occurred to me recently that I had not blogged about Girl Child in a while. I'm pretty sure she needs an update about now. She is seven and a half, obsessed with mermaid spells, swimming, ice cream, candy, climbing things and hating me. Yup....that last one is especially true lately. Seems like every time I open my mouth to say something, her glare is already on me at max power. Seven going on seventeen and bitchy.
"Waiting in Line to see Santa sucks" Bitchface

I saw this hilarious blog about a month or so ago called Reasons My Son Is Crying. It gave me an idea. A few weeks ago, I started pointing my phone camera at her every once in a while when she was death-glaring me about whatever set her off. It quickly became my passion. Thus, Bitchface
Tuesday was born. I post a new bitchface every Tuesday on my facebook. At first I thought if I showed the Girl these ugly faces she makes at me, it would make her stop. It didn't. She just rolled her eyes and sighed at me very Napoleon Dynamite like and told me, "It's.....whatever....MOM."

Mother-daughter relationships are often wrought with drama. They are complex. There is a power struggle going on. They can also be really great and rich. That happy shit is great and all, but I'm not selling Hallmark cards. This is a blog. I'm not selling anything. There's just truth. The truth is, if you are raising a daughter, you are going to get bitchface. Enjoy.

"Shut up, I'm reading Redbook" Bitchface
"This face-painting hurts my face" Bitchface
"Festivals are lame" Bitchface
"Not taking toys to school is bullshit" Bitchface

Friday, July 19, 2013

My Asshole Neighbor

Everyone has one. There is always someone nearby that just doesn't know how/want to get along with everyone. There's always that ONE individual who just rubs everyone else the wrong way. Maybe it's because they don't have a sense of community. Maybe they just don't give a shit. In any case, there is ALWAYS that self-centered turd that does whatever they feel like, regardless of time, place, people or consequences. In my world, (in my home world anyway), that douchebag is Bruce.

I knew what Bruce was about the minute I met him. He came over to my house, wandered in to introduce himself, perused my personal space while swirling a snifter of cognac and invited me to his upcoming "lingerie party". By this, he meant an actual party, where people come over dressed in lingerie. He is in his mid-twenties. He goes to his older neighbor lady's house, where she lives with her kids, and invites her to a party where she needs to wear only her underwear. He then tried to make it sound more inviting by adding, "I'll be wearing a thong." It was like a new level of weird.

He's this guy that is always overly extra energetic and shooting me with double finger guns saying cheesy shit as he runs across the lawn laughing about who the fuck knows what as he jumps into his ORANGE SUV. I despise him in just about every way there is to despise a human. His very existence annoys me. Tall, skinny, goofy looking, and living directly next door.

All this probably doesn't sound too bad yet. I probably look like the crabby jerk here. The thing that REALLY annoys me is that we live in a duplex. I SHARE A WALL WITH HIM. This means I get to hear Bruce have sex. I get to hear him practice guitar (which he sucks at). I get to listen to his shitty music. I hear every time he laughs his asinine laugh. He slams doors, stomps feet, has friends over to party EVERY NIGHT OF THE MOTHAFUCKIN WEEK! Last week he stopped by to see what I thought about him getting a drum set. Bruce is a goddamn idiot.

I'm trying to be a good neighbor here, but this dude sucks. His grating personality aside, he has no respect for me or my kids. I tell him they have bedtimes and he needs to keep it down. I tell him this several times a week. I don't call the cops that often or tell the landlord because I'm not THAT tool. I do think that turnabout is fair play though. When I get particularly annoyed, I park my minivan in the driveway and block him in. I let my little early risers have their own party (drums included). So help me....it will be a battle of wills to the very end. I'm onto you Bruce....and I will win.

Friday, May 31, 2013

Dear Twenty Somethings,

Hey guys.....you sure are ridiculous. I know becoming an adult can be rough. No, you don't have the same body you did in high school. The crowd you run with may be different. You might have to work full time instead of going on road trips whenever, getting drunk on Tuesday night, or up and deciding to play video games for 7 hours straight. Awwwww......suck it up assholes. You are doing it all wrong anyway.

My generation put your generation to SHAME! I actually heard a twenty five year old talk about how going to concerts wasn't fun anymore. DIRECT QUOTE:

"If doors open at 6, that means I spend a good 3-4 hours standing in the same spot without shifting between bands, and getting shoved around for the other 2-3 hours. My feet get tired, my back hurts, I get tired of holding my beer, complain complain. Only recently have I realized that if I'm not satisfied, there is no reason for me to stay."

You guys suck at concerts.
This person went on to talk about how it sucks getting old. WTF?! You whiney bastards!!! I hear lots of mid-twenties folks talk about how they feel "old". What the hell? You think you leave high school and college and suddenly you need to file for retirement? It's not that you guys are old.....it's that YOU GUYS SUCK! Your generation is lame. You don't know how to communicate properly, research properly or APPRECIATE SHIT PROPERLY. Even your partying skills suck. What's that saying you guys like so much? "Go home twentysomethings.....you're not drunk enough!"

You guys suck at hanging out.
It may have been a decade since I was in your shoes, but I remember those days well and they were PRETTY fantastic! I know I lived in a townhome with two roommates, had a hot-tub in my bedroom, worked a full time job, played the field (dated and had fun at it), had great friends, parties, real shenanigans, went to concerts, on vacations, and appreciated every minute of it. I would have punched you in the face if you suggested we stay in and watch tv instead of going out on ANY weekend night and I would've had to be dragged out of a concert early or carried out on a gurney.

You guys suck at dressing yourselves.

You guys can't even socialize properly. You are always checking your phone, quoting memes, taking pictures of yourself, your food, checking in to wherever you go.....I think maybe you guys think you are more interesting than you really are. YOU ARE IN YOUR TWENTIES!!!! Try living in the moment a little instead of constantly trying to capture it for a screen saver. Someday, if you are lucky,

maybe you can be lame, stuck at home with kids, complaining about how you feel old and how dumb the next generation is.

Monday, May 20, 2013


In psychology and logic, rationalization (also known as making excuses) is an unconscious defense mechanism in which perceived controversial behaviors or feelings are logically justified and explained in a rational or logical manner in order to avoid any true explanation, and are made consciously tolerable – or even admirable and superior – by plausible means.

Enter "The Boy". His laundry list of insane excuses for the incredible things that transpire in my house is quickly becoming legendary. I have decided to lay some of them out in my blog not only for the sake of entertainment, but for genuine documentation. The first excuse was the latest and the inspiration for this blog.
That's the culprit right there giving the parade wave.

1. I walked in my children's shared bedroom to find Little Mermaid stamps covering my daughter's dresser. When questioned, the boy insisted a ninja "sneaked" in and perpetrated the act right under everyone's noses and "sneaked" back out. Ninjas.

2. Another time, his sister was using the age-old sisterly method of tattling on her brother, when he interjected a solid point that would surely blow her story out of the water, "She's drunk!"

3. Poop smears on the bathroom wall were apparently the product of the neighbor's cat.

4. Me, "Did you pee your pants?!"
    Him, "Naw, it just rained on them."

5. Bedtime. Kids hate it. Boy's excuse, "My room is broken."

6. Chores: "My arms are broken! They huuuuuuurrrt!"

7. Anything I won't let him do, "My teacher said I could!"

8. One time, he lost his shoes and told me that dinosaurs ate them off his feet.

9. "I only do what cheerios tell me!"

10. And my personal favorite: Me - Will you clean your room already?  Boy -  I would... but I just don't want to.

The dang kid is four. I just want to hold off on him getting any bigger or any cheekier as long as possible!