Friday, July 27, 2007

Desk School Financial Aid Insomnia Oxygen

My old foe, Insomnia, has decided to come torture me this week. I'd say friend, but really Insomnia is not my friend and I hate it when it visits. When it's really bad, Benadryl doesn't help and this week all the Benadryl has done is make my mouth and eyes dry come morning. Normally Benadryl knocks me for a loop because I am such a cheap drunk, but nope, Insomnia wins this time.

After waking up every 30 minutes all night long, at 3:42 I was AWAKE and even though I was soooo tired, there was no way I could go back to sleep. I finally turned on the TV and thought that surely the Science channel would lull me into boredom dreamland, but instead I found that tectonic plates are utterly fascinating. Who knew?

I don't have trouble with insomnia too often, but when I do it reallllllly makes me mad. But I seem to learn a lot.


School starts for the kids in 2 1/2 weeks and for me just a hair of 3. They are extremely excited to get back to their friends and Kady is so excited about riding a school bus she can hardly stand it. I am dreading it. This is the first year that all of my babies will be in school full time. I remember the day Abby started Kindergarten and how I cried and how my mom and sister had to keep me occupied all day for fear I'd drive down to the school and sit in the parking lot with binoculars to make sure she was okay. When Sam started Pre-K I cried, but had adjusted to the thought of school. But Kady....she's my baby! When the other two went off to school, she was still at home, still by my side, still, ya know, here. Now she'll be there not here and that makes me sad. Really sad. I may have to dust off the ol' binoculars again....


Yesterday it hit me like a shovel upside the head, I hadn't received confirmation of my financial aid for school yet. I had applied back in April, my FAFSA was renewed and sent to NEO and that was that.

See, when you enroll, the college gives you an email address that they use to correspond with you. I checked it during the semester and never ONCE got anything in that inbox. When the semester ended I kind of forgot about it. It occured to me yesterday that maybe I should check it.

Sure 'nough, there were four - FOUR - emails from the FinAid office telling me they needed my tax return and some worksheets in order to process my app. Guess when those emails were dated. May. I copied the necessary stuff, filled out the worksheets and loaded up the kids to go deliver the stuff in person.

I slunked up to the lady's desk and meekly said, "I need to turn these in so you can process my application." Then I stepped back and suppressed the urge to curtsy. This woman held my college career in her hands because for me, no financial aid means no school. Period. She asked if they had requested the information and I nodded and said, " May." She grinned but didn't say anything. I added, "See, I kind of forgot about that NEO email address." Then I giggled and said, "I'm sure that's not the first time you've heard that." No reply. "Oh please, ma'am, tell me that I am not the only dingbat who forgot about the NEO email!" She laughed and said, "I hear that phrase a lot. Every day. You're fine, hon."

She said they should have me processed by next week and yay, I can go to college again.


Speaking of college, I mentioned awhile back that I had been offered a workstudy job, right? Well, when I got the job at DHS I knew I had to call the lady at the college and tell her that I was working and could not commit to her 20 hours a week, work 20 hours a week at my other job, take care of my children, fix food for my family, bathe and sleep. She was so sweet and said that wasn't a problem. I explained that I understood that if she needed someone who could work 20 hours that I understood. She said she'd rather have me a few hours a week than not have me at all. And while that was a huge compliment, at the same time I felt panic closing in.

I'm such a perfectionist and y'all know I'm compulsive with a wee bit of obsessiveness thrown in for kicks and giggles, so not being able to devote at least 3 hours a day to school work makes me nervous. But I think I have it figured out.

I work 9-1 every day at DHS. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday I will come straight home to an empty house where I can obsess over my grades and schoolwork in peace until the kids get off the bus. On Thursdays I will go from DHS to the college and work there until 5, take an hour to grab a bite to eat, then go to my night class till 9. Thursdays will be lonnnnnnnng days, but as long as my boss at the college is okay with 4 1/2 hours a week from me, I can do it.

I think.


Last night I found the writing surface of my desk.

It is wood.

I also have a desk calendar.

Who knew.


Some strange truck just drove up to my house and like an idiot I opened the door to see who it was. The guy approaching my house appeared to be close to 432 years old and I've seen turtles walk faster than he was walking, but I am still such a ninny that I totally freaked out when I saw something dangling from what appeared to be holsters on either side of him. I locked the storm door because apparently I thought the plexiglass storm door was going to protect me from bullets.

Turns out it was his oxygen.


Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Close Encounters of the Barbed Wire Kind

Monday I went to work like I do on Mondays now, leaving the kids home with their father. They had grand plans to go swimming and eat lots of junk food that I don't let them eat as frequently as their father does. I had a few errands to run after work and walked in the door a little after 2, my feet aching (stupid uncomfortable cute sandals) and just wanting to take off my shoes and bra and sit down for awhile.

When I drove in the driveway I could see Sam, Abby and Paul on the carport, Kady nowhere in sight. I got out of the van and expected Kady to jump out at me to scare me - a new hobby of hers, scaring us all shitless as she jumps out from behind things. I was informed she was inside playing with her GameBoy, also informed that I was an hour late getting home and that there was no food in the house. Bet you can't guess who those informative statements were from. He then informed me that he needed to go into town because the renters were complaining that the faucet in the tub was leaking. (My Papa was the world's best renter. These new people complain a lot.) I told him to go for it, I was going inside to sit down for awhile. Sam asked if he could ride the four-wheeler and I said, "Yeah, as long as your daddy is out here." Abby had a few zits on her chin and asked me to take care of 'em for her. (Gross yes, but we're pickers here in this house.) She and I went in the house and left the menfolk outside to ride the four-wheeler and load the truck.

Okay, I'm sure it's no secret that my husband and I are not the best of communicators and this is a prime example. He left to go to town. He did not inform me of precisely when he was leaving for town. Just hopped his redneck butt in his truck and sped off with his pipe wrench. Anyone want to take a guess at what he didn't do besides not telling me he was leaving? Yep, he failed to tell Sam to get off of the four-wheeler and not to ride without a grownup outside. Now, in Paul's defense, Sam knew better than to ride without a grownup being out there, but still, sometimes you have to remind kids. Because their little memories are incredibly short-term.

I was busy torturing my eldest daughter with my fingernails when I hear bellerin' outside. At first I thought it was Sam hollering at the dog. Next thing I knew, the front door blew open and Sam was not quite screaming, but definitely not speaking calmly. To the best of my recollection, here is what he not-quite-screamed:

"Oh my gosh I wrecked the four-wheeler Ohmygoshohmygoshohmygosh Mom, I wrecked it Just ran it through the fence out in the little field I'm so sorry Ohmygosh I'm sorry Dad's gonna kill me I hit the fence, Mom Oh Dad's gonna be mad Oww Oww Owowowowowowowowwwwww Oh my gosh I'm sorry"

Something like that. He turned to go outside, saying he needed to check on the four-wheeler and that's when I gently took him by the shoulders and said as motherly as I possibly could, "Son, I don't give a dang about that four-wheeler. Are you okay?"

"No.......I don't think I am."

Then he went outside. I followed him out, could see the four-wheeler entangled in barbed wire, looked down to see my son sitting on the front stoop, head hanging down, shaking it saying, "I'm so sorry, I'm so sorry" repeatedly. Then he started crying. A lot. Which was reassuring to me because up to that point I thought he was going to pass out. I knelt down in front of him and said, "You daddy isn't going to kill you or be mad at you. All that matters is that you are okay, okay? Now, let me look you over." He sniffled and nodded. While I checked him for blood and bones sticking out, I said, "Ab, go get your daddy." She walked around the house and came back to tell me, "He's gone. The little truck's gone, Mom." I clenched my teeth and said, "Then go get the phone so. I. can. call. him."

"Paul, Sam just wrecked the four-wheeler... Yes.... Ran it through the fence.... He seems to be okay, but you need to come home. Now."

In the meantime, the girls had checked out the damage and had run back up to me hollering how he "really wrecked it good." Sam started bawling again and then told me his arm was tingling. I'd noticed he wasn't moving it, but had asked him to wiggle his fingers, bend his wrist and elbow and he did all that fine. But he still wouldn't move it off his leg. I called the doctor's office and the nurse said tingling and hurting aren't usually a good thing after a wreck and to take him to the ER. About that time Paul came flying up the driveway, skidded into the yard, jumped out, looked Sam over, then headed down to the fence. He told me later that he had seen the four-wheeler jammed into the fence row on the way up the drive and once he saw Sam was okay, needed to not talk to anyone for a few minutes. He was pretty scared. He knew how bad it could've been.

I never saw it up close, but Paul said if Sam hadn't hit the steel fence post which slowed his momentum and broke his arm, he could've easily been sliced, diced, julienned and many other words that one only likes to use when referring to food and not children. He has said many times that it could've been so much worse.

I called my mom to tell her what had happened, told the girls to get their shoes on and we loaded up to go to the hospital. The wreck happened shortly after 2:30, we arrived at the ER at 3 and by the time we walked in the doors, the skinny little boy arm that had moments before looked fine, now had a strange looking, not-at-all normal bump just above the wrist. We were sent to the waiting room and about 15 minutes later were called back to triage. She took his vitals, asked a bunch of questions, gave him an ice pack and sent us back to the waiting room, telling us there were two ahead of us.

At 4:30 my mom came by to pick up the girls. Sam was acting better, had had a Coke and some Doritos from the vending machine, was watching Oprah while sitting curled up in my lap and I thought we were probably going to be told he was fine and would have a nasty bruise. Mom and the girls probably weren't out of the parking lot when we were called back. The nurse was a guy I've known since I was in elementary school. In fact, he's a cousin to my best friend from school, DeLisa, and the three of us used to ride his three-wheeler all over De's field with no adult supervision or helmet, half the time we were's a wonder he survived to become a nurse and I survived to be in need of his nursing abilities.

He ordered an x-ray and they brought in a portable machine which Sam thought was the coolest thing ever. He'd never had an x-ray before and was nervous, but still in awe. We were given another ice pack and a TV remote and settled in to watch Drake and Josh and Zoey 101. Around 5 Tater popped her head through the curtain and said, "Hi, I'm Dr. Yaya" which Sam thought was hilarious. Soon after that, a mere 2 1/2 hours since we walked through the doors, we saw the doctor who didn't even know Sam had been x-rayed yet. While she went out to see the x-rays, Paul called and said he was in the waiting room, but didn't want to come back and "make a spectacle or anything," to which I said he was a dumbass. The doctor came back in and asked, "Sam, buddy, have you ever broken a bone before?" Sam said no and she said, "Oh yes you have!"

I went out to the waiting room to get Paul at that point, while the nurse got ready to splint Sam's arm. The doctor showed Paul and I the x-ray and sure 'nuf, the little dude broke his radius cleaner'n a whistle. We walked out of the ER, exhausted and hungry, at 6pm with a boy sporting a hard splint, a prescription for 15 Lortab (Nope, Meanie, no Benadryl - guess they figured we had that at home) and a list of orthopedists to call first thing in the morning. We took him to McDonald's then picked up his Rx and we finally went home.

The durn cute uncomfortable sandals had sucked my will to live by that point and I drove home barefoot. By the time Mom showed up with the girls at 8, Sam and I were in our pj's on the couch watching yet more Drake and Josh. He said his arm didn't hurt too bad so I gave him a Motrin before bed, took two Benadryl myself so I'd sleep (because I hadn't the night before) and we both crashed before 9. At 11:30 he woke me up saying he couldn't get comfortable and his arm was throbbing, so I gave him half a pain pill and put him in bed with me. No amount of Benadryl helped me sleep through being severely beaten with a hard splint for the remaining 7 hours of the night, but he slept great.

I called the orthopedist at 8 and then had to call his PA for a referral and by 8:05 we had an appointment for 2:00 to get a cast. We had been told in the ER he'd be in a cast for 6 weeks, but the orthopedist said that his bones are still pretty pliable and given his age and health, he only needed to wear it for 3. I was so relieved - it is summer in Oklahoma and can you imagine how ripe that arm'd be by September? I'm sure 3 weeks worth of enclosed sweat aren't gonna smell great, but I'll take the golden moments where I can get them.

He's gone all day without anything for the pain and has only threatened to use it as a weapon once, so I think things are going along swimmingly.

The night it happened, I tucked him in and got him situated then went off to tuck in the girls. I thought I heard him crying so I peeked back in his room. I asked if he was okay and he said, "Yeah, I was just praying and thanking God for taking such good care of me today. I think I was pretty lucky, huh, Mom?" Of course, I melted into a puddle in the floor and said, indeed, he was a very fortunate little boy to have a God who loved him so much and looked over him so well. I know I blow and go about Baptists here on the blog, but I've never stopped loving God or doubting His love and care for me and mine. He is an awesome God. An awesome God who obviously knows how reckless 8 year old boys can be.


Oh, and to those of you who ventured guesses as to who the breakee was.... Yeah, I always knew it'd be one of the girls, my highest bet going on Kady. I guess 10 years in the Mom business and this being our first broken bone isn't bad, but I still never would've believed it would've been my boy. Those two girls of mine are serious clutzes.


When I got to work on Tuesday I was telling one of the caseworkers about our adventure the previous afternoon and as serious as can be she said, "Yeah....didn't we get a referral on you?" and started rifling through files. She thought it was hilarious that I just stood there like a fish outta water with my mouth opening and closing like that. I figure I must fit in pretty good if they're already teasing me.

For you to ponder

I swear to you that the ridiculous amounts of time between blog posts has nothing to do with my new job.

This week it has everything in the world to do with the fact that someone in my house is now sporting a lime green cast on their broken arm.

I'll leave you to muse over who that might be while I go make dinner. Between dinner and So You Think You Can Dance I will tell you the entire story.

Is it:

A) Me, the only person I know of (besides Stacie) who fell UP the stairs to the Band room. More than once. Also the woman who is still plagued by intermittent attacks by the Carpet Monster who causes me to fall for no apparent reason whatsoever. I also fell INTO the dishwasher in junior high.

B) My husband who has been hit by a car while on a motorcycle.

C) My eldest daughter who has been compared to a newborn colt or Bambi when he was first born and fell splayed out on the ice while Thumper laughed his fuzzy cotton tail off.

D) My boy who is an 8 year old boy and related to me, which is dangerous in and of itself.

E) My youngest daughter who has fallen prey to the Carpet Monster and suffers from the spontaneous running into of walls.


Sunday, July 22, 2007

What's Wrong With the World

Friday afternoon, the kids and I headed into town with my van FULL of crap. Not literal crap, just crapp in the sense that I've bought my children entirely too many toys in the past few years and why did I think I needed four sets of mixing bowls and I don't make homemade bread, so why do I have a bread slicer? That kind of crap.

We unloaded said crap at Mom's and then Kady and Sam stayed with Mom while Abby and I went back home to get a second load and to help Paul put the desk, toybox and changing table in the truck. As we hefted that extremely heavy, yet worthless for a college student, desk into the back of the truck, Paul told me if I brought it back home he'd burn it. (So when that nice young couple up the street offered me $15 for it, I took it just to save our neighborhood from threat of wildfire due to desk burning.) Tater had brought a load during that time and was headed back for more. By the time we got back the second time, she and the kids were there and the fun began.

It is tradition for Tater, the kids and me to stay the night at Mom's on garage sale-eve. It's easier than having to get up and around and get the kids around and drive to town, etc. So the night before a garage sale we usually polish off a bottle of wine or two, laugh until our heads hurt and sleep horribly. It makes for a really long next day.

After staying in the yard Friday night until we could no longer fend off the mosquitoes as large of Buicks, we went to bed at 12:30am and got up at 4:30am Saturday. Mom and Tater both had to shower because Mom had an auction to work and Tater is now single and therefore cannot be seen sans makeup and her hair must always be perfect, so she says. (I'd be danged if I'd work that hard for a man. Probably why I will never leave my husband - there's too much effort involved in being single. The one I already have is used to me the way I am.) Knowing they had to impress people the next day, I showered the night before then set my alarm 15 minutes before theirs Saturday morning and got in the bathroom and put on my makeup and fixed my hair before they had to get around. This effort of foresight on my part earned me the name of "Prom Queen" the rest of the day. Not sure why since I wasn't out to impress anyone. Maybe I just look that good.

The ad in the paper said we would open at 8, so we figured we'd have customers by 6. Our first one showed up at 6:30 and thus began a steady stream of bargain hunters that didn't end until 2.

It was pure heaven to sit in the garage with her Saturday and swat mosquitoes with my baby sister. She threatened to kick my butt in front of a group of garage salers and I offered to sell her to several people. Things were wonderfully relaxed and hilarious amidst the sweat, lack of sleep and as she said, "the continual and horrific threat of malaria."

There's one at every garage sale - the guy who will bargain with you no matter what. You could have a big-screen TV for sale for $5 and he would do his best to get you down to $4.50. Just to say he did. He bargained with me on a $7 convection/ nuclear radiation cooker Papa bought off of an infomercial. He asked, "What'll ya take?" and I replied, "$7." He said, "Oh come on. In the spirit of things, let me have it for $5." I replied with, "I have no spirit. Take it for $7 or don't take it." I ended up letting him have it for $6 only because I was ready to poke him in the eyes with the PlaySkool fork on the next table. Through gritted teeth I said, "Pay me $6 and get out of here now." He opened his mouth to say something else and I held my finger up and shook my head. He paid me $6 without another word.

This particular guy is a garage saler who makes the circuit and is a "collector" who probably doesn't really collect, but instead re-sells stuff on eBay. We recognized him as he walked into the yard. He sauntered up to the table and said, "Do you have any guy stuff?" We both immediately answered, "No." He said, "Translation: guy stuff is guns, knives, fishing equipment, tools, et cetera." Tater blinked once and said, "Translation: no." After he left I said, "You don't know how badly I wanted to say, 'Nope, no guy stuff here. Translation: we're lesbians.'" She spit sweet tea all over a table Mom had for sale for $5.

This one cranky looking old lady kept bringing piles and piles of stuff up to the table then going back to shop. Every time she brought a load of stuff she'd make a cranky comment about how she had to buy stuff because "those kids just cart if all off to their house every day." I didn't care of she had cleptomaniac kids in her house every day as long as she was buying my stuff. One time she said, "What's wrong with the world today is that no one has control of their kids. [That wouldn't be you, would it? You know, the one who lets kids steal from her? Nah, of course not.] Those kids I watch, they have to sit at their desks and I have a world map on the wall for them to stare at. All day." And I thought Well, no wonder they steal from you - they have to have fun somehow. Well, then she overheard me saying I wanted to make enough money off of the garage sale to buy the new Harry Potter book and let me tell you, that cranky old lady nearly came right out of her support hose. She said, "Girl, I wouldn't have one of those books in my house for nothin'. You don't want to get me started on that subject." I said, "You're right, I don't." She hmph'd at me, but at least she didn't honk her horn.

Later in the morning, a little boy who was probably about three or so, wanted a toy and set to work wreaking havoc on the toy table. All of the toys were priced insanely cheap because we wanted them to sell and what kid doesn't want to get the bargain of the century at a garage sale? Well, he decided he wanted this particular toy and told his mom she was buying it for him. She jerked it out of his hand and said, "You can't have it because you didn't ask." Then he threw himself on the ground and began shrieking, "MAY I PLEASE HAVE TOY? I SAID 'MAY I' SO YOU HAVE TO LET ME HAVE IT NOW!" and we politely ignored the scene because we've all had a kid who throws a humdinger in public. She told him that just because he said "may I" that didn't mean she was going to buy it for him. Then he took off running and ran into the yard next door and she just sighed and looked at her cup of coffee like "Do I put down the coffee and reign in my child or what?" She opted to keep a handle on that coffee cup and just kind of ineffectively batted at him while he ran around her, in between tables and around the tree. It was at that moment I stuck a sign on the wall that said, "Not responsible for accidents."

The little darling then ran into the neighbor's yard and got a good head of steam going as she ran screaming past our table, "YOU CAN'T CATCH ME YOU F---ER!!" And while I'm a big fan of the f-bomb (in appropriate places), I heartily disapprove in its use in the preschool set. I bit my lip, Tater quietly put her eyeballs back in and picked her chin up off the table. Eventually the mother caught him and put him in the car where he screamed and banged on the windows until she was done shopping.

As they drove away Tater said, "What that boy needs is a world map and someone to steal from."

Has it really been since Wednesday?

I guess it has. Wow.

Where to begin...where to begin....

Friday morning I was laying on the couch dozing in and out - in my conscious moments thinking about getting up and starting on the garage sale pricing, in my not-so-conscious moments Zach Braff was involved - when the phone rang. It was one of my old babysitting moms asking if I could watch JackJack for the day. I haven't seen him since late last fall, so I said sure, bring him on over. He was a baby last time I'd seen him, barely sitting up, but now he's a little boy with a little boy haircut who walks like Frankenstein. The kids enjoyed having him here all day and he kept them occupied while I priced stuff.

It was fun playing baby games with JackJack and as I sat in the floor with him across from me, matching sock hats on each of our heads, a chicken puppet on my right hand and a hippopotamus puppet on my left, making him giggle until he lost his breath, I thought, "This is where my uterus should start crying and begging me to have another baby." So I waited. We played "watch Kiki stack blocks as high as your head and cry 'Ohhh no!' as you knock them down" and thought, "Okay, uterus, start kicking up a ruckus down there," but I got nothing. It was kind of sad that I didn't get sad that I don't want to have any more babies.

I was talking to Cousin Courtney on Saturday and we were discussing babies and my current disdain for slobber and snot and how pudgy baby cheeks don't affect me like they used to. I said, "Everyone says you'll just know when you're done having kids and I guess I've reached that point." Cousin Courtney shrugged and said, "Sounds to me like your biological clock just broke. Forget about batteries running down, that thing's just broke."

Broke enough that I'm making Paul a doctor's appointment this week.

Snip snip.


The hay guy finished our hay on Friday amidst low rumbles of thunder off and on all week. We were so afraid it would rain between cutting and baling and we'd risk losing our hay. Fortunately, it all worked out and we got 98 bales this year. The first year we lived here we fertilized and got 134, but most years since we've gotten around 90-100, except for year before last when we got 67 and last year when we got 42 1/2. Drought is rough.

Normally we just give the hay to Paul's brothers, but this year they only needed 10 bales, so we got to sell the remaining 88 bales. When I did the math and figured out what we were going to get for the hay I excitedly asked Paul if I could start booking our anniversary trip. He stopped scribbling in his hay notebook and looked up at me over the top of his glasses and said, "No, we're buying you a van." Now, this should make me happy....because I do need a van. But I really want to go see Mickey Mouse again....

I'm still pouting and hoping he'll just give me his truck so we can go to Disney World for our 15th anniversary. A van just isn't as romantic as holding hands while watching fireworks over Cinderella's castle. Wait, who am I kidding - if he and I go to Disney World together, it'll be me standing there bawling as I watch TinkerBell fly out of the castle while he gripes that his feet hurt and he's hungry and his hand is sweating because I've been holding it so long.

As disappointing as a van may be, it might save me from being disappointed at a lack of romance.


Saturday was the garage sale. Separate post to follow.


When the garage sale was finally packed back up and stuffed where it needed to be stuffed (Some of it in Mom's garage, but unfortunately, most of it in my van) the kids and I flew back here to get ready for the 8-man football game. Paul's mom was here to watch the kids and had brought pizza, bless her heart. Somehow she just knows when to do that. Paul was helping a guy load hay, so I did my best to dry out my bra somewhat with the hair dryer (I'd sweat so much during the garage sale, I think my boobs mildewed in my bra) and touch up the makeup I'd had on since before dawn.

At 4:30 we were flying out the door and headed back to town. We got to the football field and not a soul knew where our money, programs and tickets were or any other pertinent information. Finally we just went down to the gate and waited. Eventually a guy drove down to us and brought 3 boxes of programs, two rolls of tickets, a jar for the tickets, a walkie-talkie and a money bag. We were rollin'. Once we finally got a system going were rocked along okay and eventually they sent 5 cheerleaders down to sell programs for us.

I've worked this game for 3 years, but this was the first year it was held at Commerce. Usually it's at NEO and we sit in the breezeway and have chairs and tables and bottled water, but this year we were at the highway gate and therefore worked out of the back of Paul's pickup. When someone drove up, I walked up to their car to take their money. It was at least 95' when we started and add in idling cars on hot blacktop and by the time it was all over, my shirt was soaked all the way through, my boobs had sat in my wet bra for so long they were shrivled and pruny and from mid-calf to where my Crocs started, my legs were black from dirt/exhaust/sweat. I was gorgeous, lemme tell ya.

I pissed a woman off and she honked her horn at me. She had wanted to pay for the car behind us and hadn't made that entirely clear to me. At that point in the evening, we had a high school girl selling admissions, too. She was working the car behind me at the time. In the process of trying to figure out how many adults and children were in her car (a number that changed every second) she all of the sudden leaned out her window and screamed at me, "SHE IS TAKING THEIR MONEY WHICH IS WHAT I WAS TRYING TO TELL YOU I DID NOT WANT TO TAKE PLACE. YOU ARE SO STUPID! HOW DO YOU NOT UNDERSTAND WHAT I'M SAYING?" Then she beat her fists on the steering wheel and honked her horn. If she'd have called me a bitch, it would've gotten ugly and I could tell she really, really wanted to, but after she honked her horn at me I gave her my Dad look. The Dad look is what Tater and I always got from Dad when we had REALLY pissed him off - he'd tip his head down and glare at us over his glasses and then it was all over but the cryin'. I was looking down at my money bag when she honked and I looked up at her over my glasses and very calmly and politely said very slowly, "Ma'am, you owe me $24. Pay it and drive on. Now."

After they peeled out and made themselves look like total asses to everyone in line, we all had a good laugh and for the rest of the evening the catch phrase was "You better watch it or I'll honk my horn at you."

We had started taking tickets at about 5:15 and the game started at 7. By 8 we'd get a car about every 10 minutes and by 8:30 we were ready to poke our eyes out with unsharpened pencils. We'd let the high school girl go watch the game, our cheerleaders had put on all the lip gloss they could put on and had sprayed their hair about 4 times apiece before they, too, had to go and stretch and get ready for their halftime performance. So it was just Paul and me....sitting.....sweating.....dreaming of fast food and a bathroom........joking about angry bitches who honk their horn ..... and debating if we were too physically exhausted to even gamble after the game.

We stayed through half time then turned in our money and were just ready to go pee and eat. Then I heard my name being screamed through the crowd. I turned around to see one of the former recruiters from the college running at me with her arms wide open. We stood there and visited for 20 minutes while my bladder continued to beg for relief and my stomach growled angrily and my boobs shriveled even more, but honestly, I'm so glad she saw me and hollered. I hadn't seen her in years and it was nice catching up.

Then Paul and I grabbed some dinner (At 9:30. Yes, there was indigestion.) and decided that we had a little energy to gamble. But turns out, we really didn't. We were only there about 20 minutes before we were both ready to go and for us to leave a casino after only 20 minutes, well, you know we had to be tired.


Today I've cleaned my bedroom and most of my office, rearranged my computer desk in anticipation of the quickly approaching new semester, laughed my head off at the pictures in my old scrapbooks (Cedric, if you ever run for public office, I am SO blackmailing you), marveled at the sheer volume of mundane crap I saved back in my teenage years (score cards for putt-putt, movie ticket stubs, programs to the spring band concert), shed a small tear at the empty box of M&Ms smashed in the back of one book (Stacie told me to save it and I have all these years. Not sure why she told me to save it, but I found it utterly impossible to throw away probably 20 years later) and was again astounded at how gigantic my hair really was in the 90's.

Today was really just the perfect way to end a weekend - my nostrils full of dust and the smell of Pledge, my trashcan full of useless old papers and markers that no longer write and my heart and head full of memories.


Wednesday, July 18, 2007

High School Musical

Okay, so not really a musical, just a meme. Not a me-me, but a meme. Which is still weird and I still call them me-me's in my head.

1. Who was your best friend? Until my Junior year, it was DeLisa. She had been my BFF since before we started Kindergarten. Then my family hosted the Belgian foreign exchange student from Hell and the Belgian witch caused some major problems and De and I weren't friends again for a long time. So halfway through my Junior year and until after we graduated, Cyndi was my new best friend. She was literally The Most Popular Girl In School and for me, a Band/Speech Nerd to have scored BF status with TMPGIS...well, I felt pretty high-falootin'. Until I woke up to realize I had aliented the friends who had stuck by me since elementary school. Of course, now I'm friends with virtually none of any of those girls, so ..... (shrugs)

2. What sports did you play? HA! I didn't. I did, however, play on the Seniors's basketball team when we played against the faculty. No one could believe I did it and no one threw the ball to me. I volunteered to sit on the bench the rest of the game because duh, I was sweating and no one had told me that sweating was involved.

3. What kind of car did you drive? I drove a 1986 gold Chevy Cavalier. It was a rebuilder my dad picked up for next to nothing, drove it while he was in Nursing school and then passed the golden torch on to me. The paint crackled, it sported a nice dent in the driver's side back door where I wedged my car between Jerry's truck and the shop building, the headliner was sagging (not a good combo with gigantic big bangs, so I slumped) and the driver's seat had come unbolted from the frame, so it was propped up with a brick. To get up a hill, I'd turn off the air conditioner and we'd all lean forward, giggling like mad the whole time.

4. It’s Friday night, where were you? If it was football season, I was directing the band at a football game. If it was baseball or basketball season and my boyfriend, Brad, was at a ballgame, I was Uptown with the girls. (Which is actually downtown if you want to get technical, but we all called it "going Uptown.") Back then, dragging Main was still legal and popular. We drove up and down Main at a crawl for houuuuuuurs all weekend. Of course, gas was like, .74 a gallon, so it was all good. If it was between ball seasons, Brad and I did what we did every Friday night - dinner at McDonald's, a movie at the $1 show, then we parked until curfew.

5. Were you a party animal? Uh, no. And I can honestly say, at the ripe old age of 34, I have never been to a party, like the parties you see on TV. I know they exist outside of television, but I never ran with that crowd. Tater went to several in her day, but not me. Now, invite me to a Pampered Chef or Tupperware party and I'll knock you down to get there.

6. Were you considered a flirt? More often, the word I heard was "tease."

7. Were you in band, orchestra, or choir? Band. From 5th grade until I graduated. I started out with the flute, until I got tired of being last chair. I was really, really bad. I then moved back to percussion where I played the bells (glockenspiel, xylophone, whatever you call 'em in your neck of the woods), bass drum, bass keyboard and for three years, was Drum Majorette and led the band during marching season on the field and at parades. During concert season one year, we played a song that was supposed to be reminiscent of ships on the ocean. We didn't have a ship's bell and there was no money in the budget for one, so Mr. Medders went to the salvage yard and bought a brake drum. I banged on that sucker with a mallet and it sounded just like a ship's bell.

8. Were you a nerd? Oh heck yes. But I was a popularish nerd. I was called teacher's pet more than once, I lived to make straight A's, I never caused trouble, I never cut class, but I still managed to hold ranks with the "in" crowd.

9. Did you get suspended/expelled? I'd have committed suicide if I'd ever gotten suspended. Seriously. I was that into school.

10. Can you sing the fight song? Thanks to the efforts of Mrs. E, yes, I can STILL sing the school song. Complete with the "rah rah!" at the end. (Which leaving off of the test caused me to get only a 98%, not a 100%.)

11. Who was your favorite teacher? I have three favorite teachers from my junior high/high school years and they were my three English teachers - Mrs. Reid, Mrs. Enoch and Mrs. Sharbutt.

12. School mascot? Bear. It's been very hard to transition from large scary mammal with sharp teeth to nocturnal carnivorous flappy bird.

13. Did you go to Prom? I went to a lot of Proms. My Prom career started when I was a Sophomore. I went to two my Sophomore year, two my Junior year and one my Senior year. The Wyandotte Prom my Sophomore year was the best one ever. I went with the gay Drum Major and Cyndi was there with her boyfriend. We danced and acted goofy and everyone expected that because we were the youngest ones there. My Senior Prom was not all that great. It was on a boat and I went from borderline panic attack to borderline nauseous all night.

14. If you could go back and do it over, would you? HECK no. I feel bad I hurt the people I hurt with the whole popularity thing going to my head and I kind of regret some of my antics, but doing those things shaped who I am now and there's no way I would want to jeopardize what I have today.

15. What do you remember most about graduation? Wearing a micro mini skirt and getting away with it.

16. Where were you on senior skip day? I don't think we had an official skip day.... I will tell you, though, that I never skipped a day of school until my Senior year. It was then that my dad said it was about time I started acting like an immature teenager and skip school a time or two.

17. Did you have a job your senior year? Not a full time, after school job. Before the divorce, the house rule was "no jobs while school is in." I babysat here and there, though. Tater worked at a burger joint after we moved to Miami, though. I was always kind of jealous of that.

18. Where did you go most often for lunch? Butterfield's General Store. Almost every day I got a Frito pie and a large Coke and I think it cost under $2.

19. Have you gained weight since then? I had a 28" waist when I graduated high school. I don't even think I have a waist now.

20. What did you do after graduation? Here's one regret - My Papa wanted to take me and Tater out for pie after my graduation. Tater went. I did not. I really regret not going - all he wanted was to take me out for pie and I was too caught up in going out with my boyfriend to have a single piece of pie with my Papa. Tater says I shouldn't feel bad, that I was 18 and it was my graduation night and I did what pretty much any other 18 year would've done, but I still feel bad.

21. When did you graduate? May 1991. If I wanted to dig around in my hope chest, I could tell you the actual date, but eh, that hope chest is a disaster right now.

22. Who was your Senior prom date? I went alone. A few weeks before Prom I got drunk for the first time. I mean, schnockered off my kazooie to the point I couldn't walk and then busted through the back door with the annoucement, "Mom...I'm druuuunk!" The next day, during the 1991 version of the Spanish Inquisition, is when my parents found out I wasn't a virgin anymore either. So if I thought that the grounding from getting drunk was bad, the grounding from my no-longer-secret sexual revolution was even worse. I was not allowed to see the boy I'd been seeing (Why, I'm still not sure, because he really had nothing to do with anything, poor guy) and Mom was going to drive me to my Senior Prom and pick me up. I then stated I wasn't going to go to the stupid Prom, but then I was told that oh yes I was going to go to the stupid Prom because my punishment was going to be as humiliating as humanly possible. Walking out the door to get in the car, Mom in her robe, me on the verge of tears because my mom was not only driving me to Prom but was driving me there in her bath robe, Mom tossed me the keys and with a glare in her eye and venom in her voice said, "Come straight home when that boat docks. Don't stop for a Coke, don't stop for anything, don't even talk to your friends in the parking lot. I know how long it takes to get home and I will be timing you." I met up with "that boy" and spend the evening wrapped up in his tux jacket, griping about my parents, trying not to vomit over the side of the boat and wishing I hadn't even come.

23. Are you going / did you go to your 10 year reunion? I not only went, I planned it and held part of it here at my house. I was pregnant with Kady. It was hot. And the classmates who still, after 10 years, knew how to push my buttons, pushed those buttons to the point I cried every day until the reunion. Once the day finally came, it was fine. We had a good time seeing people we hadn't seen in a long time, seeing their kids, reminiscing. Then that night we had dinner without the kids and went to the bar. We didn't stay long because I was utterly exhausted and half sick, so we missed out on MagnetLady getting her boobs grabbed by a classmate's wife.

24. Who was your homeroom teacher? We didn't have a homeroom. Our first hour teacher took the cafeteria report and that's where we got announcements, but I think our "homeroom" teachers were the class sponsors and I couldn't tell you who that was my Senior year - maybe Mrs. Young....not sure. Junior year, though, was Mrs. E and Mr. Baldwin. Those two put on Prom with the Juniors every year. I'd call them both saints for doing Prom every year, but only Mrs. E qualifies for that title.

25. Who will repost this after you? Probably no one. I heisted this off of Melessa a week or so ago and it's probably already made the rounds. Take it if you want, though - it was kind of fun.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Eat almond Kisses, drink sweet tea and watch Glenn Beck for tomorrow we sleep in

Ah, Glenn Beck, how I have missed you! My late night jonesing for "entertainment and enlightenment" will be sated tonight. Normally I watch Nancy Grace, too, because she's just so bitchy, but she's on this professional wrestler/steroids kick every single show and frankly, I'm off that. They do it, we know it, let it go, sistah.

When school starts, I know that watching late-night TV will be gone again, so I'm soaking it up now while I'm only working a few days a week. Glenn Beck comes on earlier in the evening, but I'm always fixing dinner then. I know they say having a TV in the bedroom is a bad thing, but frankly, my life is more whole, complete and well-rounded because I can watch Fox News, HNN and CNN from my bed. (The bed that does not have a pole in it, Hillbilly Mom.)


Second day of work - no copies. Lots of cleaning. My desk was dusty and disorganized, but thanks to my hefty helping of hereditary OCD, it is now clean, dust-free, germ-free and wayyyy organized. I took in some pictures of the kids, pictures of Paul at Disney World with Lightning and Mater, my "diva" plaque that Cousin Stacey gave me for my birfday and this morning Mom presented me with a charming picture of my youngest child with her eyes crossed. That one made me laugh several times today.

I'm not working tomorrow. I could have, but frankly, there's little I can do until they can get me in the system and in case I haven't mentioned it (Oh, I have?) we're having a Garage Sale this weekend and I have only managed to price 40,000 or the 927,000 items I'm selling.


I'm getting my hair colored tomorrow so that these pesky grays stop being so pesky and gray. I also am thinking about having my nails done, just for kicks and giggles. And kind of because I never have. I'm 34 and have never had a mani or a pedi.

Sad, isn't it?

Oh, my oldest daughter has (It was a reward for bringing her grades up in 3rd grade), but I have never had my nails painted by a professional. I've had them painted by preschoolers, my son, my sister, more than one giggling teenager when I was a teenager myself and once by my husband (Remind me never to do that again), but never by someone trained to do so.


Today Mom watched the kids while I was at work. I had them lay their clothes out last night so there would be no fuss this morning. Kady had picked out a turquoise tank top and jean shorts. Nothing out or the ordinary there, right?

Ah, but this morning she came down the hall wearing the tank top and jean shorts, alright, but had also added to the ensemble:

a headband covered in bright red cherries
about 7 strands of my old twist beads from elementary school
a gaudy bracelet from God knows where
her new pink polka-dotted fish face high heels
a lot of pink eyeshadow
and pink glitter lip gloss.

No one can say that Kady doesn't have style. And it's all her own.


Paul and I are working one of the gates at the 8-man football game this Saturday. I've worked it every year for the last 3 years (and have the t-shirts to prove it), but this year Paul and I are working it together. He's already whining that it's gonna be hot. I said, "Yeah, but it's also going to pay you gambling money you didn't have, so shuddup, ya wuss."

So if you're a fan of 8-man football, come out to Commerce this Saturday. And buy me a beer. 'Cuz I hear it's gonna be hot.


Hay cutter/baler guy will be here tomorrow to start wreaking havoc on the family's allergies and sinuses. Paul is already sick with some crazy coughing thing (My opinion: the fungus/mold in the air from the flood) and Kady sounds like a beagle puppy, so I expect things to only get more snotty and wheezy around here. Wahoo.


An hour and 15 until Glenn Beck. Must go get some more almond Hershey's Kisses and prepare. How exciting!

Rounding Ready Writers to Raid Writing Reserves

Oy vey, this is going to be a challenging challenge.

Round Seven at Write in the Thick of It is All About Alliteration.

I won last time, so this was my bright idea. Blame it on GoingLikeSixty. He started it. And suggested it, so I expect him to write this round. (hint hint)

Stories are due next Monday, so prepare pencils per perverse perpetrator's petition!


Monday, July 16, 2007

Just for the record...

I loathe garage sales.

The pricing, the dust, the screams of the children, "NOOOO! Don't throw THAT away! It's my FAVORITE! I promise I'll play with it EVERY DAY FOREVER!", the complaints from my husband that he's tired of stepping around the gigantic mountain of crap piled in the dining room, the realization that I have bought a lot of stupid stuff over the years...

All I gotta say is, I better make a boatload of money off this garage sale.

Who knew?

Did y'all know the sun comes up at 6:30?? See, since becoming unemployed I still get Paul up at 6 every morning, but if he's sleeping with me in the bed, I turn off the alarm, then slap him awake with my eyes closed. If he's sleeping on the couch (which he has been lately because of his cough due to cold) I turn off the alarm, shuffle to the living room, slap him awake, then shuffle back to the bed - again, with my eyes closed.

But this morning my alarm went off at 6:30 and I opened my eyes and there this strange glowing orb in the sky that I vaguely recognized as the sun. When I left the house 2 hours later, yep, it was the sun. Strange idea, this morning thing.


Friday I took Abby back to the doctor because her ears have never cleared up from church camp. One was still hurting and one started itching. I tolerated and cajoled her for three weeks, hoping that it would clear up on its own. I don't like antibiotics for ear infections. I just don't. But after three weeks, I started feeling cruel for not doing something about it and realized that it was time to see the PA again. He looked at both of them with the otoscope, then left the room to get the thing to do a tympanogram. (A tympanogrammer? Tympanographmogrifier?) I hate it when they break out the tympanogram. That has never been a good thing with Abby. And sure enough, both ears read flat. That would sure explain why we have to repeat things to her. So now she's on Augmentin orally and he also prescribed antibiotic ear drops. Today she says they don't hurt and itch anymore, therefore making me feel even worse for waiting three weeks.


Friday night Abby, Tater and I saw Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. Of all of the books, this one ranks way up there, might even be my favorite. It was full of suspense and I really loved it. The movie, while entertaining, was good, but not all that great. I mean, for one thing, it was pretty slow starting and Abby, who is usually captured by the movies from the beginning, was bored. It was also really long. She was yawning most of the way through it.

And is it just me, but is it hard to picture Daniel Radcliffe as a poor teenage wizard after seeing the photos of him in Equus? I'm just asking. He looks less like a boy now to me....and that isn't a bad thing necessarily.....ooh, does that make me creepy? Okay, let's move along.....


Saturday more of the sleeping in thing. That was lovely. Abby went off to spend the night with a friend. When Paul got home from work I left Sam with him so they could go see Transformers (kind of disappointed I missed out on that one) and Kady and I met up with Mom in Joplin to find me some clothes for work. I had planned on visiting Penney's, Kohl's and wherever else necessary, but managed to get everything at Lane Bryant. Thanks to the gift cards and my wonderfully generous mother, I got about $300 worth of clothes for $80. Yahoo.

We went to Payless in the mall after that to get Kady some shoes. The child has got positively HUGE feet. My other two kids have really small feet - something that boggles my mind because mine have never been small - but that third kid of mine takes after her mother. And her feet have done some serious growing this summer. My 5-year-old is perilously close in shoe size to her brother who is 8. I got her some sneaks, some brown leather Mary Janes for school and some saddle shoes. I LOVE saddle shoes, always have, always will. Fortunately, she does, too and snatched them up, hugging the box like it was a Hello Kitty purse filled with chocolate and the entire cast of High School Musical.

In addition to the three pair of sensible shoes I bought my youngest child in preparation for her (*sob*) first year of school, my mother set the child up with a pair of really ugly foo-foo girl shoes. They are pink with white polka dots, open-toed (I think they call them "fish face"), strappy sandals with a slight heel AND a gigantic pink gauzy bow at the end. Truly hideous. She loves them. Maybe more than the saddle shoes. She calls them her high heels and wears them with everything - dresses, shorts, pajamas, and while buck naked. Oh to have shoes that made me that happy.


Yesterday I cleaned house all day. I mean, literally all day. Not just your usual, every week, run-of-the-mill house cleaning. I'm talking pull everything out of the kitchen cabinets, pantry and closets cleaning. I always pull stupid stunts like that before a major life change like starting a job. I did it right before school started last semester, too. Many more life changes and my house should be spotless.


Today was my first day of work. I wore my new red capris (which are actually Bermuda length shorts on a person with legs of normal length, but on me they are capris) and new red shoes that show off my tattoo and that my husband hates. He looked at them on my feet this morning (after Abby squealed, "OMG, those are the CUTEST. SHOES. EVER!!!!") and said, "I don't like those shoes." And he said it with kind of a smirk, so I queried, "Why don't you like them?" all the while lifting my heel and pointing my toe like a professional shoe model. He said, "They make your feet look two miles long." I said, "Um...they are." He replied, "Point made."

Work went well. There were very few caseworkers there, so therefore not much for me to do. I did get to use the copy machine for the first time, though. A caseworker handed me a file and told me to copy it. I confidently took it and turned to the copy machine that is so very much not like any copy machine I've ever used. To put things into perspective - the last time I used a copy machine with any frequency was when I was 15 and 16 and working for the attorney my mother worked for. He had a copy machine that you lifted a flappy thing on top, put the paper on the glass and then you pushed a button. If you wanted to copy the other side, you turned the paper over and then fed the copy through again, sometimes recopying something several times to get it right and not upside down.

But this copy machine at the office is a monster. It has more bells and whistles than I wonder are entirely necessary on a copier. It will even staple! Now, I totally realize that I sound like a yokel just off the turnip truck, but well, I kind of am. I have been a stay-at-home mommy for most of my married life. Not many opportunities arise in the stay-at-home venue to copy things. I can print like the dickens with my printer and scanning is a breeeze, but this copy machine was no Lexmark printer/scanner/faxer/copier like the one sitting here beside me. And I doubt it has ever printed off Polly Pocket color sheets.

Fortunately I had seen my supervisor copy something and knew where to put the original. I copied an entire bundle of papers, then realized they were double-sided. The screen didn't actually have the words "Print Both Sides" anywhere on it, so I swallowed my pride and asked the caseworker. She was helpful and quickly had me copying both sides all willy nilly and such.

I was telling this story to my mom, who only once said, "You were intimidated by a copier??" and has been a secretary several times in her working life. That woman can copy, lemme tell ya and she's never been intimidated by a copier. She was standing at her kitchen sink, listening while I told her of my copy machine adventure. When I was done she said, "I'm so proud of you, my daughter, Redneck Diva, Queen of the Copy Machine."

I'm thinking of having that put on a t-shirt: Redneck Diva - Queen of the Copy Machine

Thursday, July 12, 2007

The Job

Oh yeah, I kind of didn't tell you much about the job, did I?

I didn't sign a non-disclosure agreement like I did with The Casino That Shall Not Be Named, but still, given the type of agency it is, I know beyond the shadow of a doubt that I will not be blogging about work.

I will be an aide in the Child Welfare office at DHS (Department of Human Services). From what I've gathered from the supervisor, I am a go-fer. A well-paid go-fer, in my opinion. I answer phone calls when necessary, enter data, make files for cases, transport children when necessary and do whatever the case workers need me to do to make their lives easier.

It is an amazing opportunity and should I decide to change my degree to social work, I have my foot in the door.

And, get this -

I have a cubicle. My very own cubicle. No shit. I am utterly taken by this notion. I know that the ideal of cubicle living is not one that usually gets positive press, but to this 12-year stay-at-home mom, it's pretty exciting. I'm already digging out pictures of the kids for my desk. MY DESK. I get nearly giddy when I think about it.

Until school starts, I'll only be working a few days a week, one or two more than likely. Paul is off on Monday, so I'll work Mondays for sure. Mom's job is flexible and she'll take the kids one or two other days a week when she can. When school starts I'll work every day. Being a mom, my number one concern is flexibility and my supervisor said that most everyone there is a parent and they understand sick kids, etc. Being part-time, I don't get sick time, but if I have to take a day off for a sick kid, I can make up lost hours if I want.

To quote the red-headed orphan when she saw Daddy Warbucks's mansion for the first time, "I think I'm gonna like it here."

Doin' the Employment Boogie

I am employed. Holy crap. I. Am. Employed.

20 hours a week. 20 flexible hours a week. The pay is way more than I imagined it would be. They were impressed that I can type. (Do people NOT know how to type these days?)

I start Monday.

I've got to go buy some pants this weekend. 12 years of staying at home in your sweats does not actually build up much of a working wardrobe. Wearing shoes daily is going to be an adjustment as well.

I'm totally up for this. I am ready. I am excited.

I need to hug my Aunt Janet's neck.

Oh my gosh. I have a job.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007


In an effort to reduce the salt in my, who am I kidding? I bought a stupid can of Campbell's Healthy Request chicken noodle soup by mistake and since I have a cold/allergies that are sucking my will to live, I thought that soup might help. If nothing else, I thought it might just make me feel better to say I drank chicken noodle soup when I was sick.

I have actually bought the Healthy Request variety before because they're all 98% fat free. The broccoli cheese is really good. Not sure what the hell I was thinking when I got the chicken noodle variety. I think I had all 3 kids in the store with me, is what I think. Nothing good ever comes of shopping with 3 children.

The label said "30% less sodium", but chicken noodle soup is pretty salty, so I didn't think I'd miss 30%. I WAS SO WRONG. I heated it up, poured it in my favorite big mug and took a big ol' slug of the most disappointing liquid to ever hit my taste buds. Ever seen those commercials where the guys are screaming, "Help! I can't taste my beer!"? I wanted to run into the yard screaming, "Help! I can't taste my soup!" Oh my gosh, if I'd wanted something that tasteless, I'd have drunk water.

Salting saltless soup is a lesson in futility. I even poured salt on my tongue then took a swig of soup. Still nothing. And in salting my tongue, I think I damaged my taste buds, so I can't taste anything anyway. Guess I'll go have another cup of soup.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007


By the way, unless you have an engineering degree, don't buy a Transformer for your 8 year old son. They're way too complicated for kids and after 20 minutes of folding, unfolding, banging it on the table and cursing, Paul handed it off to me with the statement, "Here. I can't do it. I think I broke it." I scoffed and took instructions in hand and proceded to show my husband how to transform a Transformer.

After 30 minutes and one broken nail, the car became a robot. 10 minutes after that, Sam brought it back and said, "Mom, can you make it back into a car?"

It's raining on prom night

Yesterday morning the home phone rang at 7:17am and I figured it was Paul for some weird reason. He had already left for work on the 4-wheeler at 6am, to be picked up by the secretary in his department and I figured he was calling to tell me to do this or that or whatever. Keep in mind, our phone lines have been under water for a week now and rather than a dial tone we have this screeching and squealing and squawking that might be mistaken for alien communication. I immediately cringe when it rings because I know I have to put the phone up to my ear and not only am I risking alien brain infection when I do that, but I also know it's going to hurt my ear. So I cringed and picked up the phone. Amidst the screeching I heard the neighbor say, "I just made it through in my truck! It stinks to high heaven, but I made it through!" I thanked her, hung up the phone and hollered, "Kids! Get yer clothes on - we're goin' to town!"

There were three super happy kids at that announcement. One super happy momma, too.

Before we left, I had some phone calls to make - one to the city to get the utilities put in the renters's names which I couldn't do, one to the gas company to get the gas put in the renters's names which I couldn't do either, but at least got a landlord thingy put on the account for future use, and one to the place that has a job opening to tell them that I am interested and would await her return call. (Which never came yesterday, but I did hear last night that she did get the message and now awaits my appearance in her office, wahoo!) By the time I did all that, then called the renters to tell them that they personally have to put everything in their names, then took a shower and got ready (I'd forgotten how to put on makeup and look me awhile to convince my skin to not shriek at the foreign substance being placed on it), we made it out the door at 11:20.

When the neighbor said "it stinks to high heaven" she totally was not kidding. Ever had a wading pool in your yard and you decide to drain it and move it to somewhere else in your yard? Yeah? And know how it smells underneath the pool when you move it? Yeah? That smell like rotting rot and the stench of rottenness? Well, magnify the smell under the wading pool by about 13 million. We literally gagged as we drove through. It's bad. Real bad.

The drive into town was sobering enough to turn off SpongeBob singing "The Best Day Ever" because even though we thought it was a pretty durn good day because we were finally out of the house, we were all struck silent at the wreck that has become parts of our city. Buildings literally gone, washed away, nonexistent now. Fences full of debris, trash and hay bales from God knows where, washed in from fields. Our favorite deli, waterlogged. A convenience store that has a gaping hole in the roof where the refrigerator floated right through the top. And the obvious death to all vegetation that water came in contact with. (Pardon that preposition there, dangling at the end of that sentence.) And the smell. My heavens, the smell.

7 days stuck in our house was nothing compared to what hundreds of people in my city experienced.

Then, to add insult to injury, Woody's Cafe, which has been a Main Street icon for like, ever has been renamed Mom's Home Cookin'. I am not exaggerating when I say that Sam nearly cried. He was so upset. His daddy took him to Woody's last year for breakfast and he still talks about it today. I remember going to Woody's for lunch with Nana after mornings of shopping downtown when downtown had shopping. To rename it is an abomination in my opinion.

So in order to lighten the mood I started talking about the Chinese food we were going to eat because we all had craved Chinese food for a week and kids isn't Chinese food great, let's eat Chinese food, yipeee! But instead the three kids mutinied and begged for McFood. Hello Kitty and FlyWheels in the Happy/Mighty Kids Meals won over a week-long craving of yummy, MSG-laden Chinese food. I just closed my eyes and pretended my grilled chicken - hold the mayo - was broccoli beef. It didn't work, but I tried.

While I was disappointing my tastebuds, I called the Miami Cineplex and got the matinee time for Ratatouille.

After lunch, we did our banking and went to Wal*Mart to buy a Transformer, a Littlest Pet Shop something or 'nother, some blue, pink and purple nail polish (Which, by the way, my nails are lookin' awesome coated in purpleness), new eyeliner and contraband candy to stick in the bottom of my purse. Then we headed to the Cineplex for 2 hours of air conditioning and darkness and not home.

Ratatouille was rather not that good in my opinion. Oh, it was cute in parts and the kids loved it, but the scenes where there were rats - LOTS OF RATS - in big ratty hoardes, scampering and, for the love of Pete, cooking gave me the heebeegeebees and I couldn't help but say "OH MY GOSH" out loud, loudly, several loud times. (shudder) It was long - two hours worth of long, rodent-filled kitchen scenes that made me never want to eat out ever, ever again. Ever. Yes, I knew before entering the theatre that the movie involved a rat chef, but I had no idea that scenes involving hoardes of rats cooking would be involved. (more shuddering)

Upon leaving the theatre, I found out when the first showing of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix will be. Oh yeah, I am that big of a dork. I have also been known to drive to Wal*Mart at 11:00pm in order to be one of the first to buy a copy of a newly released book, only to find that I was the first and only idiot to buy a copy at 12:01am. Yeah.

We came home around 5pm, after a stop at Sonic for yet more! fast food and glorious, glorious soda. I had sweet tea at lunch because sweet tea is the one thing Miami McDonald's does oh so right. We don't keep soda in the house as a general rule because we really like soda, so that first slug of a gigantonormous Sonic Coke was nearly orgasmic.

Yesterday was Ladies' Night at Buffalo Run, so we called Mom to see if she'd watch the kids, she agreed and we again, headed for town. Paul hadn't been to town through the Fairgrounds, on South Main and he was as dumbstuck as we had been earlier in the day. He, too, was upset over Woody's cafe's name change.

Paul's been brewing up a very sudden, what he's calling a cold since Sunday and spending an evening out amongst the mold spores, God knows what kind of rot germs in the air and then a smoky casino has made him sick enough to declare, "Get me a doctor's appointment today. I'm dying." For him to admit defeat after only 2 days, it must be bad. I'm wagering my bet right now that it's pneumonia again. Dangit.

Tomorrow is the day I go to visit the prospective place of employment and hope for a hire. It was going to be today, but Mom can't watch the kids for me. Her best friend's father passed away and they are having a very ceremonious tribal burial for him and she asked Mom to be there. He was the last remaining full-blood Seneca-Cayuga Indian. Mom said something about having to go earlier to be smoked. I'm not familiar with the ceremony, seeing as how firstly, I'm not Seneca-Cayuga and secondly, I'm only 1/128th Cherokee. Enough for a card, but probably not enough for a good smoking at my burial. I'm not making fun, please don't misunderstand. I'm just saying, my translucent skin and freckles don't lend to people automatically knowing I'm Cherokee. When I walk into the Indian Clinic, most stare and probably wonder, "What is this Irish chick doing here?" If there's any smoking at my funeral, it will be done by those also holding a bottle of Bud Light.

Oh yeah -- it's raining again.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Sleep renters notebook crying NASCAR

This unemployment thing is rather interesting. It has propelled me back to being 16 again. I sleep so late it's shameful. Tomorrow, though, I'm going to check on a job opening I was informed about this week. I'm rather excited about it and hope they will take this poor jobless waif in. I have about 4 weeks worth of sitters that I need to wrangle, but hopefully it'll all work out. If it's supposed to, it will. I actually had my eye on a full time position at the college, but with the kids and a full-time college schedule, which includes Macroeconomics AND Algebra this semester, I'd better not push it. Part time will do just fine. Keep yer fingers crosssed.


The rent house has occupants. Thank the Lord.

Funny thing about your town getting flooded - it brings renters in by the dozens. Or the threes, as in our case. In 24 hours we could've rented it 3 times and we never advertised it or put a sign in the yard. The people I wrote a brief post about here ended up bugging out on us and we gave them until 5pm yesterday to sign the contract. When they didn't show or contact us, we rented it to a very nice, especially precious older couple who I've known since I was literally a toddler. We were Baptists together at Hudson Creek Baptist Church just a ways up the road from where I live now. They're still Baptists actually, but I won't hold it against them - at least they're not cat people. They also just happen to be the grandparents of my displaced BFF, Tiff.

Day before yesterday we got a call from the first set of prospects. Yesterday we got a phone call from my cousin's wife's mother who is a realtor and she asked if we'd rented the house. I explained the situation, told her we'd be in touch after 5 and the rest is history. Then last night around 10:30 my mom called to tell me that her next door neighbor had just left and said they had people on the way over with their checkbook with the intention of writing out a check for whatever amount of money we needed in order to get that house. They are flood victims and very homeless right now - as they were moving their furniture out the back door, the water was coming in the front door. Poor folks. I almost offered them the playhouse the kids never play in, but then I remembered that 1) we're still flooded in and 2) there's no bathroom or kitchen in the playhouse and it's only a 10x10 room anyway.

Paul spent all day yesterday at the rent house, finishing the bathroom which we recently re-did. He also mowed the yard there and at Mom's (which helped her out tremendously), showed the house to the new renters, called me every 30 minutes to gripe about the first set of prospective renters and just generally reminded me repeatedly that he was out of the house and I was not. But I'm not bitter.


The water is down a little more today. We heard from a neighbor that some folks got through in a jeep and a few went through on horseback, but since we don't have a jeep or a horse, we're still out of luck. Paul keeps saying he's so tired of being flooded in and then when he recovers from me slapping his face and kicking him in the shins, he is gently reminded by me that he has been out of here daily since Thursday. The kids and I are stir-freakin-crazy.

Tomorrow I NEED to do some banking, check on that job, eat Chinese food and switch the utilities in the rent house. I may become a horse thief overnight.


My tear ducts are officially cleaned out and I'm not due for a good cathartic cry for quite awhile. I watched The Notebook two nights in a row. The first night, Paul couldn't stay awake while we tried to watch Stranger Than Fiction (which we never finished), so I told him no worries, I'd watch Notebook and he went on to bed. At 2am I was on the couch, in the dark, covered up to my chin in a blanket, sobbing so hard I thought I was going to throw up and/or wake up the rest of the house. Then, because I'd talked about how wonderful a story it was, Paul wanted to watch it last night. Big dummy that I am, I watched it with him and bawled just as hard.

There are only a handful of movies that make me really cry like that. I'll admit I'm a cry-er. I'll cry at Kodak commercials, an occasional blog post if it hits me just right and when my children go off to church camp for the first time, and I'm no stranger to shedding a tear or two at the end of a movie. But as far as sobbing my guts out, there are only a few that can elicit that kind of reaction from me:

Steel Magnolias - To this day, even after repeated performance of various scenes during my Competitive Speech days and even more repeated viewings on VHS, I still bawl when Shelby dies.

My Life - Paul and I watched this very soon after we lost our first baby. We both cried and sobbed and cried and sobbed. While I own it, I have yet to even take off the plastic. I thought I might watch it again someday, but I keep talking myself out of it. It's probably going to go in the garage sale next weekend. I don't think I could ever bring myself to watch it, to be honest.

Penny Serenade - The only black and white movie I own. Mom bought Tater and I each a copy for Christmas one year after the three of us sat in her den one Sunday afternoon and bawled ourselves silly while watching it on AMC. Cary Grant and Irene Dunne are a childless couple who adopt a precious little baby girl and ...... must stop......tears......coming......

The Bridges of Madison County - Movies this gut-wrenchingly sad should be outlawed. I read the book first and cried - I kid you not - for hours after I finished it. I would get calmed down, start thinking about it and start all over again. I honestly didn't think the movie could hold a candle to the book, but it did. The scene where it is raining and she is in the truck with her husband, behind the truck that holds her One True Love, I am nearly hysterical, nearly screaming, "Open the door! Just open the door and go! Go to him! Yes, it's raining, and you're torn between security and passion, but just go! You have to GO. NOW." Paul won't let me rent it.

I watched The Notebook thinking the same thing I did about Bridges - that there was no way the movie could compare to the book. After reading Notebook I went to bed and cried into my pillow for an hour. After watching it the first time, I went to bed at 2:30am, woke up my husband (who didn't appreciate that very much) told him that I loved him even if he was annoying and that I would tell our story to him when he's old and suffering from dementia. He sleepily replied, "What? I'm already old. And we don't have a story. We got drunk, I proposed and you said yes. I think I can remember that. Can I go back to sleep?"


We also rented Talledega Nights last weekend. Paul and I watched it one night after the kids went to bed and I laughed so hard in several places that we had to rewind the disc because Paul couldn't hear. I had resisted renting it for a long time because I'd heard it was really stupid. In fact, within days of each other, I had heard from two different people that it was the best movie ever made and the worst movie ever made. It's no 40-Year Old Virgin or Knocked Up, but it's pretty dang funny. IF you like stupid, redneck, crude NASCAR humor, which I didn't think I did, but turns out I kinda do even though I still don't "get" NASCAR.

The next day, I let the kids watch it, but I kept my finger on the remote the whole time and fast forwarded through quite a few parts. Abby had been quoting the movie all last school year and said everyone in her class had seen it. "Shake and bake" is her favorite, as I'm sure it is every 10 and 11 year old's favorite. Sam really liked, "And I told her 'You got a lumpy butt.'" Kady didn't like it and left the room to play with her Polly Pockets. There might be hope for her, but the other two are too far rednecked to recover now, I'm afraid.

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Vote, by cracky!

The latest round at Write in the Thick of It is open for voting. Seeing as how there were only two submissions this time, there is no reason for you to not take the time to read both and then vote. They're both really good and I'm not just sayin' that because one is mine.

Voting is open until Wednesday the 11th so vote early, tell your friends and then for the love of Pete, write a story for the next round! Next round is alllllll about alliteration.

Do over

Okay, so I misunderstood the clear-as-mud stupid meme that GoingLikeSixty put forth and he's given me one shot at a do over on Stupid Meme #1. Methinks someone is just conceited and likes to hear good things about himself. But that's just my opinion....

So here we go....

8 Things I Like About GoingLikeSixty:

1. He really likes M&M's.
2. He makes me laugh every single day.
3. When I first started reading his blog, I thought that "boomer" meant he was from Oklahoma and was anti-Sooners (OU) and anti-Cowboys (OSU) and thought he was an Okie anarchist.
4. He mounted a squirrel. (heehee)
5. ˙ʇxǝʇ dılɟ uɐɔ ǝɥ
6. He wants to see my coconuts.
7. He's techy, pithy, knowledgeable, hilarious and someone I could hang with.
8. He says he's going to buy me a beer when I get off the island. I am so holding him to that. Of course, one of us is going to have to fly..... here's hoping he's got some frequent flyer miles or something.

They aren't cat people

Just people who lost their house in a flood.

So, providing they don't balk at the conditions of the rental contract, WE HAVE OUR FIRST RENTERS!!! And really, I don't think they'll have any problem with the parts of the contract that state

  • they are responsible for shampooing our dog
  • they have to babysit our kids every other Saturday night (gratis, of course)
  • they have to take me out to lunch on the 12th of every month
  • and of course, we can't forget the Christmas bonus in December's rent check

Nah, they shouldn't have a problem with any of that.

Glad we could help them and they could help us.

Friday, July 06, 2007

Just because I have cabin fever

GoingLikeSixty does FridayFive every well, Friday. This week's is thought-provoking and because I'm cooped up and ready to start gnawing my arms off, I'm doing it.

Stupid Memes (And did you know that meme isn't pronounced "me-me?" Me either!):

Stupid Meme #1 - Eight Things You Like About Me

Now, it's just guessing here, but I'm thinking the top eight things you like about me are:

1. I'm funny as all get out.
2. I'm a redneck that still has all of my teeth.
3. I can say the alphabet backwards.
4. I have four tattoos. (Hey, tattoos are criteria for friendship in my book)
5. I alphabetize my canned goods.
6. I have perfected the most amazing chocolate chip cookie recipe in history.
7. I'm too broke to stalk you.
8. I have virtually an unlimited supply of phrases like "Happier'n a puppy with two peckers," "Worthless as teets on a boar hog," and "Bleedin' like a stuck hog!"

Stupid Meme #2 - Five Things About Your Underwear

1. I only buy my underwear at Lane Bryant. Yes, I pay like $6 a pair, but it is so worth it.
2. My underwear must match my bra. Every. Day.
3. I fold my underwear when I put it in the drawer, not just cram them in there like my oh-so-annoying husband does to his. He doesn't buy his at Lane Bryant (which is a blessing) and obviousy has no appreciation for his underwear.
4. If I had to wear "granny panties" I'd go insane within the first 2 minutes. As long as Lane Bryant makes pretty boy-cut panties for fat chicks, my sanity is safe.
5. Today I am wearing periwinkle blue underwear with stars and moons on them. (Bet you couldn't guess I also have a bra in that pattern. Told you they had to match.)

I never knew it would be so hard to write 5 things about my underwear.

Stupid Meme #3 - Write Eight Quadratic Equations

Stupid Meme #4 - Seven Commandments You Have Yet to Break

Being a Baptist since I was a toddler, it goes against my nature to even admit I have sin, but I consider myself incredibly backslidden and not all that Baptist, so here it goes:

1. Thou shalt have on other gods before Me. (Nope, God, you're still #1 in my book!)
2. Thou shalt not make for thyself an idol. (No golden calves around here, just the ordinary kind of calves.)
3. Thou shalt not make wrongful use of the name of thy God (I used to say a lot of dirty words, but taking the Lord's name in vain is something I do not do and will not do.)
4. Honor thy Mother and Father (Yep, still doing that.)
5. Thou shalt not murder. (Nope. No 55-gallon drums buried on my property.)
6. Thou shalt not commit adultery. (Why would I want two men in my life? One is plenty.)
7. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's wife or thy neighbor's house. (While we don't have many neighbors, it's still safe to say that I do not covet any wife in the neighborhood. I also am very happy with my house, too.)

So for clarification purposes, the 3 I suck on are:
Keeping the Sabbath day holy (We don't go to church anymore), not lying (Oh, I lie like a rug - I have kids and it's just easier to lie at times. i.e., Dog/Cat Heaven, Santa, other imaginary creatures) and not stealing (While I don't steal on a daily basis, I have stolen a thing or two in my sordid past.)

Stupid Meme #5 -Your Six Favorite Memories of Sochi.

Ah, beautiful Sochi. I have such fond memories of you.

1. While traversing the longest city in Europe I discovered that it really is long. My feet were tired that evening.
2 Often considered the most beautiful place to visit in Russia, I think I have to agree. Well, aside from the fact that it's, you know, Russia.
3. One day, after a few Russian ales, I felt brazen enough to ask a local how he would categorize the city of Sochi. He said he thought it was “basically considered a beach town.” Who knew? I didn't go check out the beach because I hear those chicks don't shave their pits over there and I just didn't feel up to that.
4. Sochi is often referred to as the Russian Riviera because its charming landscapes and scenery are so reminiscent of the Mediterranean. Ah yes, sweet Mediterranean Sochi. That one night on the beach....
5. The average winter temp in Sochi is 44', so that pretty much meant I had THO the whole time. Charming, indeed.
6. The air quality is considered among the very best in the world, so the damage to my lungs after all those years of smoking cigarettes? Gone in one brief trip to Sochi., la, la.....


Happy Friday, y'all!!

Thursday, July 05, 2007

...and a good time was had by all

Last night, as I mentioned, we floated Tater, Bub and the tots across the creek. (Yes, there are pictures, but Tater forgot the cable that connects the camera to the computer.) We also found a back way in through the neighbor's field and were able to bring Mom and Uncle David in on the 4-wheelers. We managed to have a family 4th after all.

It was about oh, 3:30 or so when Tater called and said they were leaving the fireworks stand. That immediately threw our house into Absolute Freak-Out Frenzy mode. Paul headed to the creek in the little truck, pulling the little boat on the trailer. Kady and I got on one 4-wheeler, Abby and Sam on the other and away we went. By the time we got there, he was already out of sight, crossing Mosquito Bay, so we stood around waiting and engaging in all out war in the gigantic mosquitos from hell that now very close to my house. Paul had warned us to spray down with Off! before we headed that way. Thankfully, I had the foresight to bring the bottle along with us because one dousing was so not enough. No kidding, this is how bad the skeeters were - one flew up the leg of my shorts and I kid you not, bit me in my you know, nether bits. Seriously. Through my underoos.

(No, I'm not kidding. Yes, I know you're laughing. It's okay to laugh - I'm sure I look rather hilarious walking around scratching my cooter today.)

Anyway, I sprayed the kids down with repellent to the point their clothes had wet patches on them. And still, we swatted. At one point, I was standing there spinning around in a circle, spraying a shot of Off! as fast as my finger would let me. I was like the Off! Helicopter of Doom for the mosquitoes on Hudson Creek yesterday.

We finally heard the hum of the trolling motor and caught our first glimpse of the boat full of my swatting, slapping, cursing family members. The tots were in tot heaven, Tater was in having a meltdown because of the skeeters and Bub was remaining stoically manly in spite of the swarming bloodsuckers threatening to take his children aloft and simultaneously sucking his life force. They docked, I grabbed the tots and began hosing them down with Off! to save them from being skeeternapped or turned into little human raisins. We made it to the house with all five kids and then had to give them all Valium so they'd quit screaming about the water and the boat andohmygoshAuntKikididyouseethosemosquitos?? And then my kids kept hugging the tots because it was the first humans other than their daddy and I that they had seen in three days.

Mom and Uncle David called around 5:30 and said they were almost here, so Paul and Tater went out on the 4-wheelers, through the field to pick them up, Mom squealing and swatting at Tater to slow down or they'd crash and that just prompted Tater to go faster. When they made it back to the house without getting shot at by the cranky old neighbor man who says "no one's goin' through MY field, by cracky" the kids got all kinds of wound up again and it never ceases to amaze me how they feel that SHOUTING EVERY WORD THEY SAY WILL SOMEHOW MAKE THE WORDS MUCH MORE PROFOUND.

We ate outside on the cleanest picnic tables in the county due to one bottle of Clorox and my OCD. During dinner we discussed the water, the homes of people we knew that were under water and how law enforcement was having a hard time keeping people out of the stanky, feces-laden water. She disgustedly commented, "Do you know how many little girls have been swimming in that dirty, nasty river water? My gosh, do you know the things that can get up in there?" I said, "I bet the doctors offices in the next week are going to see an overwhelming number of vaginosis, vaginitis and vagistinkus." Mom, Tater and I laughed until we cried over that one. And being the crude people that we are, no conversation the rest of the night was without the word "vagistinkus." (You can use it, too, it's not trademarked by Ricky Bobby or Redneck Diva Inc., LLC. And of course you're welcome.)

The kids swam in the stock tank, we fought off more mosquitos, drank enough sweet tea to float a cow, shot off a few fireworks, shouted at the kids more than once to "MOVE YOUR BIG FAT HEAD!" and I think it was the best 4th of July ever.

Vagistinkus, mosquito-bitten cooters, cranky neighbors and all.


Abby: Dude, you better not talk like that. You sound like a Baptist! [I totally have to wonder what she was saying that made her sound so Baptisty to her sister...]

Kady: I AM a Baptist!

Sam: No, you're not. Remember? Momma doesn't like 'them d*mn Baptists!'"

Abby: Well, she's a Baptist! She told me!

Sam: No....really?

Abby: Yep. Our mother is a Baptist.

Kady: (shaking her head) Momma's a d*mn Baptist.....


Swear to you -that conversation just took place in my living room. I really have to quit dissin' the Baptists around the kids.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Now we get stoopid

This may forever go down in the family history books as the dumbest, most cockamamie stunt we've ever pulled, but when you add one Redneck Diva and one Tater together, you kind of know you're gonna come up with someone outrageous. We Bass girls are dangerous at times.

We are floating Tater, the tots and Bub (Bub's dad had another minor stroke last night, so we're extending the right hand of ex-in-law fellowship to him) across the creek so we can spend the 4th together. Don't worry, we're not entirely stupid - we're not putting them across the river, just the creek. The river is roaring like you wouldn't believe, but the creek is nice and stagnant and is harboring mosquitoes like you would not believe. Mom and Uncle David declined the invitation and all I have to say about that is, well, every party has a pooper and it seems we have two.

We gave Tater the option of floating back across tonight or just spending the night and again, here is where we show you a perfect example of our intelligence - they're spending the night. It wasn't the dark that frightened us, it was the fact that if the mosquitoes are this bad during the day, we honestly feared they might carry off a tot at night. Feral vampire mosquitoes, we grow out here on Hudson Creek, I'm tellin' ya.

We've got the hamburgers and hotdogs covered, they're bringing ice, soda and oh yeah, gotta remember to tell her to bring beer. Lots of beer. The kids and I are making cookies and zucchini bread, possibly a cake, too. And best of all - Tater has a digital camera. I may retain my sanity after all. I can't stand the thought of not sharing better pictures of the adventure than my phone would provide, not the mention the fact that it's kind of expensive to send a bunch of pictures from my phone. (Yeah, I tried the Bluetooth thing, but didn't realize I needed separate software for my Razr, yada yada yada.)

Paul and Abby are out by the barn now, hooking the trailer up to the small truck, cleaning out the small boat and Kady and Sam are bouncing off the walls like two tweakers who just ate a couple dozen Krispy Kremes. I am still in my pajamas, laptop's in the kitchen so I can blog and bake, barking out orders to get the kids to clean up the house and oh yeah, gotta find a bra. (I haven't worn a bra since the beginning of this adventure because heck, it's just us here and it's not like company's gonna drop in AND while I'm on the subject, contrary to what GoingLikeSixty might think, I'm no MaryAnn and they ain't got coconuts droopy enough to hold these babies.)

Now I must go. I decided to redirect Kady's energy into making cookies, but my smallest tweaker is flinging cookie dough willy nilly and beyond. I wonder if the warranty on the laptop covers cookie dough....

Is it just weird that I am this excited about seeing other people? Technically I've only been stuck here since Monday....

We're floating the family across Mosquito Bay in a matter of hours. Keep checking back here for updates. Or you might tune into the local news.....just in case.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Well, this is fun

I've watched enough Animal Planet to float a cow, as Kady would say.

I've caught up on all the blogs I never have time to read.

I've found a few new blogs to read.

I've started working on a coconut radio so we can get off this island. (Thanks to GoingLikeSixty for the Gilligan reference)

My eye hurts. It hurt all last week, then quit. My mom offhandedly suggested I have glaucoma. She is so fun like that, putting thoughts in my OCD/borderline hypochondriac head. If it's still bothering me by the time we're rescued off the island, I'll talk to the Professor about it.

The kids swam in the Okie pool today (i.e. stock tank) and had a blast. The girls swam about 3 hours, Sam got in about 2 - he and his daddy spent quite awhile at the water doing God knows what. Paul just said, "You know, I've been busy all day, but it's driving me nuts knowing I can't go anywhere." I totally know what he's talking about - I'm still craving Chinese food.

I just watched the local news and it is absolutely amazing, the footage they are showing from Miami. Businesses that should be there, but all you can see is the top of their roof, homes completely underwater, Nott's Grocery, home of the best dang deli sandwiches in Miami (Cousin Stacey can't leave town without a bologna sandwich from Nott's) flooded.... we are so fortunate to be merely inconvenienced with being stuck in our house for a week.

I guess I'll go watch a movie. Or more Animal Planet.

We....the people

Originally published in The Miami News-Record, July 2020 Everything is different now. I’m not just talking about masks and social distancing...