Sunday, December 30, 2007

The Christmas Story

I am sitting here at the computer when I should be cleaning my house of the post Christmas mess. I am such a procrastinator. It's so much more fun to blog than it is to clean I do have to admit. If you read the last blog, then you know that The DQ's dad spent Christmas with us. He drove down on Christmas Eve and arrived around 3 a.m. The DQ was unable to sleep while waiting for him to get here. Which meant that I was unable to sleep because she came in my room every few minutes to ask when her daddy would be here.

When he got here I showed him where to put his bag and all the stuff you do when someone comes to visit. By the time everyone got settled and we chatted for awhile, it was about 5 a.m. I have now been awake for 22 hours. I tried to sleep but I don't think I ever REALLY fell asleep.

At around ten I decided it was time to wake up the girls to open presents. I know, I know, I actually had to get them up. That's what happens when they get a little older. We opened presents and we drank coffee. There was a mountain of wrapping paper and gift boxes. I did get Sissy a new digital camera for Christmas. She was really excited about that. The DQ got her first cell phone. I know she is too young, however she does spend a good deal of time with her friends, and I like the idea of her having a phone while she is not here.

I really surprised both of them with these gifts. Neither one of them had any clue they were getting the camera or the phone. I kept repeatedly telling The DQ that she was too young for a cell phone. Sissy actually caught me with her camera a while back. So I devised a sneaky plan of epic proportions. I kept the camera she caught me with as my own, and told her it was mine. Then I secretly ordered another identical camera for her.

Brilliant plan I think. After all the presents were opened we got ready to go to my sister Marlette's house. Christmas for our family has turned into pandemonium. Everyone has a boyfriend or spouse now(except for me). We also have a new addition to the family. My sister Alicia's fiancee has a three year old son. Add to that my two daughters, my sisters two sons, and my sister-in-laws daughter.

There was pure noise and chaos at her house........and I have had NO sleep. The DQ's dad drove us there in his vehicle. He needed to make a run to the store. I panicked. My sister lives out in the sticks. I was afraid he was going to get lost and I would be stuck there. In all that noise and confusion. It would take him hours to find his way back. What would I do? I would probably have a nervous breakdown. Please, don't leave me here. Please God. No.

He didn't get lost and was back a short while later. By the time he got back, I was ready to hijack the nearest vehicle and run back to the city as fast as the car would take me. I have never in my life been so relieved to see my ex husband in all my life. Well, expect on our wedding day. Who doesn't wonder if the groom is going to show up?

We went back home kicked back for awhile. For some reason, I didn't sleep well that night either, and I had to work the next day. I also had everyone coming to my house the next day. My Maw-Maw (it's a southern expression for Grandma) was coming to my house to spend some quality time with us.

So here we go again. A house full of people and I am running on very little sleep. Everything was fine until about nine that evening. We had a wonderful visit with Maw-Maw Jackson, but by this time I was just.Ready. For.Everyone.To.Leave. Their respective children too. My nerves were frayed. My patience had reached the end of the rope. I know it was because of the lack of sleep. I pulled my sister Dejah aside. (If you have looked at any of the pictures on my blog, she is really pretty with the curly hair) I told her that I was ready to get everyone O-U-T. She being the wonderful sister she is, started the process.

I don't know if this happens in other families, but in our family when the first person leaves that signals that it's OK for everyone else to leave also. She rounded up her children and started the goodbyes. Which still took another thirty minutes. I was thinking that soon I would be in the clear and everyone else would get the heck out of dodge. It had worked the day before at Marlette's house. When the first person left her house the day before, everyone else cleared out of there like roaches running from a bug bomb.

No such luck at my house. My wonderful dad decided that he needed to hand wash all my dishes. I HAVE A DISHWASHER PEOPLE. I am doing everything I can to convince him that it is really not necessary for him to wash dishes. I have a dishwasher. I will ask Sissy to wash them tomorrow. His response to that was, "Honey, nobody wants to wake up to a sink full of dishes in the morning". In my head I was saying, YES, YES, I DO want to wake up to a sink full of dishes because I just want to go to bed. Then I told him that I would unload the clean dishes from the dishwasher for him and he could just load the dishwasher. That would save minutes. Minutes that I could be curled up in my bed, trying to sleep.

OH NOOOOOOO. He was having none of that. I had approximately fifteen people in my house that night, and Dad hand washed dishes for fifteen people. (I had no paper plates). It ended up taking nearly two hours for me to get everyone the h*ll out of my house. I love my family. I truly am so blessed to such a loving wonderful family. I have never been so happy to see them leave in all my life.

I know some of my family reads this blog. PLEASE do not be offended. You did nothing wrong. I was just exhausted from two nights in a row with little or no sleep. I am glad everyone came and we enjoyed a lovely visit. I wouldn't take back the precious time that was spent with Maw-Maw Jackson. I know it was just me. I think it was the first time in my life that I have been so cranky that I was ticked off by someone washing dishes for me.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Merry Christmas (A Few Days Late)

Merry Christmas to friends and family near and far. We had a very special Christmas at my house this year. Because the girls had an obscene amount of gifts under the tree.....nope. Maybe because of the delicious assortment of chocolate candy left by Santa...not quite.

The DQ started asking me around Thanksgiving if her daddy could spend Christmas with us. I hadn't heard from him in a while, but I told the DQ that if her daddy wanted to spend Christmas with us that I didn't mind. Sure enough, a couple of weeks later he called and asked if he could spend Christmas with us. I agreed. I was on pins and needles for a couple of weeks, wondering if something would happen and he wouldn't be able to come.

Then I would have to break her heart by telling her something had come up blah, blah, blah. Anyway we got our Christmas miracle. Her dad lives eight hours away. He drove down and The DQ got a Christmas with both her parents in the same house for the first time in nine years. Our last Christmas together was when she was four months old. By the next year, we were already separated.

It really is so much better for children if divorced parents can find a way to get along. I know it's hard, but it gives children an incredible peace of mind. It is heartbreaking for children to watch the people that they care about the most in the world at each others thoats.

I honestly harbor no ill feelings about the demise of our marriage. We both equally destroyed it. At any rate, this was a special happy Christmas for our family. I know everyone can't do what I did for various reasons. It might be too uncomfortable for some families to have an ex in the home for the holidays. I was glad to have the opportunity to teach my daughter what Christmas is really about. Love, hope, forgiveness, and the belief that miracles come in all shapes and packages. Sometimes you find a miracle where you least expect it. I can't change the past, but I can do everything in my power to change the future for my daughters.

I don't know if her dad realizes what a special gift he gave to our daughter, just by being here. The fact that he made it through two family get togethers with all of us is a miracle in itself. My miracle was seeing my daughter's happiness and......he fixed my toilet.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

The Christmas Bug

I have been remiss in my blog updating this week. Every year I have the bright idea to have all my Christmas shopping done by the week before Christmas. Once again I have failed. This time, through no fault of my own. I have all the presents wrapped and under the tree. Then the news comes. We will be having an unexpected, out-of-state- guest for the holidays. This means I have to run out and buy presents for this person. I can't bear the thought of anyone being in my home for Christmas and not having a few presents to open. Especially since my children have an obscene amount of stuff under the tree.

So, I am scrambling around trying to figure out what to get the guest. I have known the guest for ten years, but they live out of state so it's not like I spend a lot of time with this person. I figured out a couple of things to get and actually did something VERY intelligent. I went shopping on my lunch hour. I have an unusual hour for lunch. It runs 11:30-12:30 instead of 12:00 to 1:00. This makes Christmas shopping a joy. Most people have not started their lunch hours so the crowds are minimal, even the week before Christmas. I was able to get in and out of the store very quickly.

I visited my sister and two nephews a few nights ago. Thursday night I began feeling a little off. I didn't think much of it and went to bed. The next morning I still felt kind of odd but I shrugged it off and left for work. About halfway there, I realized I was feeling nauseous. I was thinking that this was not a good thing. By the time I got to work, I felt absolutely sick.

I managed to make it to the bathroom at work, where I proceeded to upchuck my dinner from the night before. The only thing I could think of was that my boss was going to think I was trying to get out of work to go shopping or something. The thing is, I am blessed with a fabulous immune system. I very rarely get sick. I have never had the flu in my life. I can't remember the last time I caught a cold. I don't know if I have ever really had one.

Long story short, I left worked and called my sis to tell her that I was sick for the first time in three years. Her boys were sick with the same thing. Yep. The little boogers had shared this wonderful present with me. On the bright side, it seems to be a 24 hour bug and I am feeling better today. At least if they are going to give me a present, they gave it to me early so I would be sure to be over it by Christmas.

My illness induced a nightmare of epic proportions last night. I dreamed that my boss calls me into his office and starts beating around the bush about firing me. I said, "You mean you are firing me". At this point he accused me of stealing from the plant. Just a litttle FYI-I work in a metal fabrication plant. I assure you, there is NOTHING in that plant that I am interested in stealing. I proceed to tell him this. I state,"I swear, I have not been stealing from the plant, there is nothing in the plant that I would even WANT to steal". He then tells me that he has it on very good authority that I have been stealing. I begin to sob hysterically. Not only because I got fired, but because they accused me of stealing, which I would not do. The last thing I remember before I woke up from this hideous nightmare, is calling them a bunch of cowards and throwing my security badge in their faces before storming out the door and walking to my car.

It seemed so real. I was SO relieved when I woke up and realized that it was just a nightmare. ALL that drama just because I left work early yesterday. Nuts I tell you. That's what I am. A nut.

Special thanks to "K" at work who gave me some very thoughtful gifts that really mean a lot. Merry Christmas to you and your family if I don't talk to you.

Monday, December 17, 2007

To Believe Or Not To Believe

OK, I have a question. What do you do when you are a single working mother, your kid MAY be sick and need to be picked but you aren't sure? The DQ called me at work today and told me she wasn't feeling well. This is an issue for two reasons. One. It takes 30 minutes to get to her school from where I work. Then thirty minutes back to the office. Two. We have auditors in this week so it is a REALLY bad time for me to be out of work.

Sissy has exams this week, and is getting out of school early all this week. For today, I picked up The DQ and dropped her off at home and went back to work. I don't mean to sound insensitive but it does seem pretty strange that she doesn't feel well when she knows her sister is home early from school. She is not running a fever, nor is she vomiting. She says she just feels nauseous. Of course, if I ate a whole can of Progresso chicken noodle soup followed by a piece of cheesecake, and some chocolate, I would feel sick too.

See my dilemma. If she REALLY does feel bad, then I am a horrible mother for worrying about what is going on at work, and the gas I am wasting driving back and forth across three towns. Now, if she is faking, I am VERY upset that I drove through three towns, missed some important work time, and wasted gas.

Let's face it. At one point or another most kids fake being sick to get out of school. We as parents are required to possess the skills and knowledge to know the difference. Apparently I missed that parenting gene. Not only that, but after being a mother for sixteen years now, illness does not really phase me. I know the difference between a stomach virus, colds, strep throat and all that fun stuff. OK, the kid feels nauseous. Every time I think about how high my insurance is getting ready to skyrocket, I feel nauseous too. Big deal. I think the giveaway here is the fact that while The DQ was whining and moaning about feeling bad, she did consume the above mentioned items.

I am glad we talked about this. The final answer is that unless she produces a fever or actual vomiting before morning......she will be going to school!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Happy Birthday(A Few Days Early) Sissy!

Now that I finished the absolute last of my school work for this semester, I can get on with the really important things. Like updating my blog. (Snicker) Yesterday was Sissy's sweet 16 party. We a fun day planned of bon fires, hay rides, and a marshmallow fight. (I'll explain later). We started off running behind a little bit. What do you expect when you have four females who have to get ready to go. It took about two hours for all of us to get ready to go.

First on our agenda was to pick up the cake.















Yes, she really wanted a Winnie The Pooh cake. We also had to pick up a few other items for the party. I dropped Sissy off at my dad's house, then went out for some last minute birthday surprises. Ok, Ok, I didn't even have the cash to go in her card. I had to run by the bank and withdraw the money. One of my favorite department stores is RIGHT ACROSS THE STREET from my bank. I simply HAD to go over there and see if I could find something special for Sissy.

I found a beautiful ring for her, which I just realized I do not have a picture of. Oh well. We knew the weather forecast was calling for rain, but we hoped it would hold off until after the party. No such luck. My dad had no more than started the bon fire and it started raining. To his credit, he lit that fire and that sucker burned all evening long.

I believe I mentioned a hay ride earlier. Alas, no such luck there either. It was just too wet. We also planned on cooking hot dogs over the fire. We did have hot dogs, and there was a fire but it was too rainy to cook outside.

I also planned on having a big red bow for Sissy's car. Not only could we not find one, even if we had....it was too rainy.

So let's recount all the things that were supposed to happen:

1. Hay ride-nope
2. Cook hotdogs outside-nope
3. Big bow for the car-nope

The children did get have the marshmallow fight, but they had it in the rain. My sister Marlette and her husband bought PVC pipe. They cut it into sections. Then you put your marshmallow in one end of the pipe and blow it out the other. It stings. Really. I tried to play but all my marshmallows wimpily fell to the ground without hitting anyone.(yes I know that wimpily is not a word) Not even the smallest child there. Who I tried to hit. After a few minutes of this I gave up and went in the house.

We ended up cooking our hotdogs in the microwave, putting a movie on for the kids in the living room, and making the best out of it. Alicia wasn't feeling well, Dejah was in a bad mood, Marlette was in a bad mood. I will say that once everyone arrived they were able to put aside the frustrations of the day and enjoy the party.


































































































































I tried to post pictures of everyone. However, there are only 24 hours in one day. I have posted all the pictures I have the patience to post tonight. This is the down side to having such a large family. It takes forever to try to include everyone. I told Sissy I hope I didn't hurt anyone's feelings. She said and I quote, "I would put the pictures on there that you want, if anyone wants their picture on there, they can make their own blog".

Family members: I have uploaded all the photos to Walgreens.com if you would like to see more pictures or order prints. Contact me for username and password information.

In summary, Sissy had a wonderful birthday, despite the weather. All the people that love her the most were there. It meant so much to both of us for everyone to show up, in light of the fact that the day got off to such a rough start for everyone. That's one thing about coming from a poor family, you learn to improvise. Most of my smart mouth comments about the weather are in jest and I am not truly upset about it......at least not today.

Happy Birthday Sissy, I love you.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Compliments of My Brother Ben Via Email

A 1st grade school teacher had twenty-six students in her class. She presented each child in her classroom the 1st half of a well-known proverb and asked them to come up with the remainder of the proverb. It's hard to believe these were actually done by first graders. Their insight may surprise you. While reading, keep in mind that these are first-graders, 6-year-olds, because the last one is a classic!
1. Don't change horses until they stop running.
2. Strike while the bug is close.
3. It's always darkest before Daylight Saving Time.
4. Never underestimate the power of termites.
5. You can lead a horse to water but How?
6. Don't bite the hand that looks dirty.
7. No news is impossible
8. A miss is as good as a Mr.
9. You can't teach an old dog new Math
10. If you lie down with dogs, you'll stink in the morning.
11. Love all, trust Me.
12. The pen is mightier than the pigs.
13. An idle mind is the best way to relax.
14. Where there's smoke there's pollution.
15. Happy the bride who gets all the presents.
16. A penny saved is not much.
17. Two's company, three's the Musketeers.
18. Don't put off till tomorrow what you put on to go to bed.
19. Laugh and the whole world laughs with you, cry and You have to blow your nose.
20. There are none so blind as Stevie Wonder.
21. Children should be seen and not spanked or grounded.
22. If at first you don't succeed get new batteries.
23. You get out of something only what you See in the picture on the box
24. When the blind lead the blind get out of the way.
25. A bird in the hand is going to poop on you.

And the WINNER and last one!
26. Better late than Pregnant

Love

What Love means to a 4-8 year old . . . Slow down for three minutes to read this. It is so worth it. Touching words from the mouth of babes. A group of professional people posed this question to a group of 4 to 8 year-olds, "What does love mean?"
The answers they got were broader and deeper than anyone could have imagined. See what you think:



"When my grandmother got arthritis, she couldn't bend over and paint her toenails anymore.
So my grandfather does it for her all the time, even when his hands got arthritis too. That's love."

Rebecca- age 8




"When someone loves you, the way they say your name is different.
You just know that your name is safe in their mouth."

Billy - age 4


"Love is when a girl puts on perfume and a boy puts on shaving cologne and they go out and smell each other."

Karl - age 5


"Love is when you go out to eat and give somebody most of your French fries without making them give you any of theirs."

Chrissy - age 6



"Love is what makes you smile when you're tired."

Terri - age 4



"Love is when my mommy makes coffee for my daddy and she takes a sip before giving it to him, to make sure the taste is OK."

Danny - age 7



"Love is when you kiss all the time. Then when you get tired of kissing, you still want to be together and you talk more.
My Mommy and Daddy are like that. They look gross when they kiss"

Emily - age 8



"Love is what's in the room with you at Christmas if you stop opening presents and listen."

Bobby - age 7 (Wow!)



"If you want to learn to love better, you should start with a friend who you hate,"

Nikka - age 6
(we need a few million more Nikka's on this planet)



"Love is when you tell a guy you like his shirt, then he wears it everyday."

Noelle - age 7



"Love is like a little old woman and a little old man who are still friends even after they know each other so well."

Tommy - age 6



"During my piano recital, I was on a stage and I was scared. I looked at all the people watching me and saw my daddy waving and smiling.

He was the only one doing that. I wasn't scared anymore."

Cindy - age 8



"My mommy loves me more than anybody
You don't see anyone else kissing me to sleep at night."

Clare - age 6



"Love is when Mommy gives Daddy the best piece of chicken."

Elaine-age 5



"Love is when Mommy sees Daddy smelly and sweaty and still says he is handsomer than Robert Redford."

Chris - age 7



"Love is when your puppy licks your face even after you left him alone all day."

Mary Ann - age 4



"I know my older sister loves me because she gives me all her old clothes and has to go out and buy new ones."

Lauren - age 4



"When you love somebody, your eyelashes go up and down and little stars come out of you." (what an image)

Karen - age 7



"Love is when Mommy sees Daddy on the toilet and she doesn't think it's gross."

Mark - age 6



"You really shouldn't say 'I love you' unless you mean it. But if you mean it, you should say it a lot. People forget."

Jessica - age 8



And the final one -- Author and lecturer Leo Buscaglia once talked about a contest he was asked to judge.

The purpose of the contest was to find the most caring child.


The winner was a four year old child whose next door neighbor was an elderly gentleman who had recently lost his wife.

Upon seeing the man cry, the little boy went into the old gentleman's yard, climbed onto his lap, and just sat there.

When his Mother asked what he had said to the neighbor, the little boy said,

"Nothing, I just helped him cry"




Tears and Lessons Learned

My sanity is in question. For the most part, I like to feel as though I have a pretty good handle on my emotions. Most of the time. As my last blog indicated, I have been feeling somewhat emotional. Actually, I had been feeling sappy. Not depressed, just extra mushy. I have moved forward to the next level, which means emotional breakdowns.


Maybe it's because I just finished a stressful semester at school. Maybe it's the stress of the holidays and Sissy's birthday being in the same week. Sissy turns 16 on Dec. 19th. Her party is tomorrow. Those who read my blog regularly will know that I bought her car a few months ago. I did it then because I got a great deal on the car, and I had the money. I KNEW I would not have the money later-which is now. I digress.


Maybe it's because my daughter is beginning her journey to womanhood, and soon she will be all grown up. Maybe it's because my insurance is getting ready to skyrocket and I will never have any money again.


Whatever the problem is, this morning I was talking on the phone to my sister while Sissy and I were on our way to an appointment. I was telling her how a couple of things that I planned for Sissy's party had fallen through. With no prior warning, I started boo-hooing. Anyone who knows me, knows that I DO NOT have breakdowns. In fact, I very seldom cry. Over anything. I attributed my sappiness to Christmas time cheer. What do I attribute emotional breakdowns to? Do I have some kind of hormonal imbalance. Am I losing my already lost marbles?


Whatever it is, I really am not impressed. Now is not the time for me to fall apart. It's what?....nine days until Christmas. Most of the shopping is done. The presents are wrapped and under the tree. The kids are excited. Our home is full of holiday cheer. We are clothed, warm, and fed. What do I have to be sad about? Nothing I tell you. That's why I am convinced I am about to lose it or something. I may have to consider medication.


The Final Frontier


Wednesday night was my last night of on campus class. The DQ and I baked some cookies and I took them to class. Does anyone remember this blog? It's about a very rude and obnoxious woman I had class with this semester. She made a big stink about someone bringing their little girl to class. Anyway, I really had a hard time dealing with this woman. She really rubbed me the wrong way.


For some reason she took a liking to me. Don't ask me why. I was never really overtly nice to her. A couple of times I said some pretty straightforward things to her. So she actually surprised me as the semester progressed. I sensed that she did try not to be so obnoxious. I felt that she really was trying to be nicer. She even cooked and brought some food to class on Wednesday night. I was very surprised. Shocked even. Sometimes it's really easy to judge other people by what they say and how they act. Maybe this woman has things going on in her life that I don't know anything about. Maybe she is not such a bad person. Maybe she is not a Mrs. Grinch. Could it be that she is misunderstood?

I know there have been times in my life when people thought I was a complete and total B. I went through a period where I had a lot of things going on, I was mad at the world for my broken heart. I wouldn't let anyone in. So maybe if I wasn't such a bad person, this woman is not such a bad person. Everybody deserves a break once in a while.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star

I have been on a hunt. I have been hunting for a tree topper since the Christmas tree went up. I don’t know what happened to the star from last year. It disappeared, along with my “special” ornament. As far as I can tell, those are the only two things missing from last year. I guess there could be some other stuff missing and I just don’t remember it.

I have searched far and wide (Wal-Mart and various other department stores) and have been unable to find a suitable replacement. My friends I have to tell you, I have seen some of the ugliest stars this year. I just don’t understand why it is hard to design an attractive star. The ones I saw that weren’t ugly, had clear/white lights. I am not opposed to clear lights, but they don’t match my tree.

My tree has multicolored lights, and I want my star to have multicolored lights as well. Is that too much to ask? I think not. Is it too much to ask that the star not be hideously ugly? I think not.

Until yesterday, my search had been futile. I have been met with disappointment after disappointment since around December 1st. Even my beloved Wal-Mart let me down. At any rate, I had lunch at Sonic yesterday. (Because I wanted to eat a healthy lunch-LOL). After I ate lunch I noticed a CVS drugstore right next door. I had a few minutes to kill, so I decided to mosey on over and just look around.

Know what I found? The perfect star. In a drugstore. The star itself has that kind of clear/white look to it. On the inside of the star are multicolored lights. Each triangular part of the star lights up and then kind of fades out. Exactly what my tree needed. Of course then I had to go home and be instructed by a nine year old as to where and how I need to place the star. Kind of bossy I thought. I wonder where she gets that from……..

Monday, December 10, 2007

Susie Wimpy Pants

If I didn’t know better, I could read my own blog and think that I have mood swings.( If you compare my most recent blogs with this one.) I am not sure what is happening to me. I find myself with an over abundance of holiday cheer. I sing Christmas songs. I bake cookies. I light candles. (I just bought myself a FABULOUS Yankee candle that smells like sugar cookies) I watch sappy Christmas movies.



I cry because I am so happy. I cry because I got an email from my older brother who I hardly ever talk to. I cry because the girls will have a good Christmas. Pretty much everything does me in. These are not heart wrenching sobs. Just tears that leak out of the corners of my eyes. Maybe if I had one good cry, I could dispense with all the mini sessions. On the other hand, I don’t think there are very many people that have so much joy in their lives that they cry.

Finding The Presents

The DQ spent the night with a friend on Friday night. I had done a little shopping over my lunch hour. I went home to wrap my purchases, but I didn’t have a gift box the right size. Since The DQ wasn’t home I didn’t put the bag with her stuff in it away. She came by later to pick up her Gameboy. She found the bag and looked in it. Luckily for me, it was just a pair of pajamas and some underwear.



I CAN’T be the only person to ever carelessly leave something out and have someone find it. Sissy caught me a while back with a camera I was thinking of giving her for Christmas. I didn’t give it to her for two reasons. One, she saw it. Two, because she saw it, the surprise was gone. If I give her an expensive gift like that, I want her to be a LITTLE surprised. So I kept the camera for myself. MMMMWWWWAAAAAAAA. I needed a new camera anyway. Merry Christmas to me. Merry Christmas to me.

The Missing Gift

I went shopping with my sisters over the weekend. It seems that when we get together there is a small amount of chaos. We are talking over each other. Sometimes we bicker. It’s like taking a couple of hyper kids out for the day. So as we are checking out at Wal-Mart we are talking and carrying on. We go back to our meeting spot and begin separating all the bags. I get home with my bags, and guess what my wondering eyes do not spot. THE ONLY THING that will be under the tree for me at my house on Christmas morning.

I have a very strange tradition. I usually buy a few things for myself and wrap them and put them under the tree. (Hey, I’m single, nuff said) Anyway, I am backtracking once again. My present is not anywhere. I go out to my trunk and double check. Nope. No present for Susie. I went over to my sister’s house to look in her trunk. Nope. No present for Susie. I called my other sister but she wasn’t home. Sister number 3 looked in the bags belonging to Sister number 2 for me while I had her on the phone. Nope. No present for Susie. I gave up. I had too much work to get done to deal with it.

Now I am picturing a very upsetting visit to the Wal-Mart. I will calmly explain that I did not walk out with two items I purchased. ( I checked the receipt) At which point, the Wal-Mart employees will laugh me out of the store and not give me my items because I have absolutely NO PROOF that I didn’t get the items in question. This was on Saturday. Sunday evening when I got in touch with Sister number 2. YES she tells me. She does have my missing items! Yay! Joy! Rapture! Sister number 3 will be kicked to the curb for an undetermined amount of time for this oversight. Shame on you sister! Shame.....

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Don't Hate Me Because I'm Skinny

I have always been thin. When I was little I was skinny and had knobby knees. Trying to find clothes that fit was a nightmare. Most of my clothes were hand-me-downs anyway. It was rare that there would be something “just my size”. Being told how skinny I was all the time didn’t really affect how I felt about myself until I reached adulthood. After all, it wasn’t really an insult. I remember the first time I felt truly offended by a stranger’s comment about my size. I was in my early twenties working as a receptionist. A fast talking, smooth salesman came into the lobby area. I remember how he just kept going on and on about how skinny I was.


The straw that broke the camel’s back was when he suggested that I needed to eat some doughnuts. I felt very insulted. I used his business card to call his supervisor and complain. Most people would not walk up to an overweight person and point out how overweight they are. Nor would they offer suggestions as to how the overweight person might be able to lose some weight. That would be considered rude. Yet people don't think twice about offering suggestions on how I could gain weight. I have been told many things over the years. I was told to drink beer, once an elderly lady in the grocery store told me to drink milkshakes to put on weight. I'm sorry but that is just rude. I couldn't help being skinny any more than my sister could help being a little naturally chubby.

I am sorry if you look at food and gain weight. For many years I wished that I could look at food and gain weight. I wished that I had a nice curvy behind. I wished that I had nice curvy hips. Thankfully, after years of this, The Lord(and time and age) has smiled upon me. When I got pregnant with Sissy I weighed 99 pounds. 99 pounds. Now, at 32 my average weight is 115. It makes me so proud.


There is nothing more insulting than being told you look anorexic, or being asked flat out if you are. I was even asked once if I was bulimic. Like I would just admit to it outright if I was. That is the equivalent of walking up to an overweight person and telling them that they are fat and need to lose some weight.

I know this seems like a random blog, but I had to write an English paper and this didn't work out for my paper, but I thought it would make an interesting blog. So if you see me, don't hate me because I am a small woman. I didn't ask for it. It's just what God gave me.

Monday, December 3, 2007

I Need A Clone

Well people.......I have realized that I have too much to do and not enough time to get it done. I have a Math quiz that is due by Thursday-30 questions. Two English papers, both due on Wednesday. Now, since I will be in class on Wednesday and Thursday, I have one evening to get all of it done. I spent all day yesterday on the computer finishing 5 chapters for my online class. I spent tonight completing the 30 homework math problems that are due by Thursday.

It is now ten at night. My behind is sore from sitting in this computer chair all evening long. Yet somehow, I am wrapping up my night with a blog. Some would say maybe my priorities are not in order. To those I would say, kiss my sore behind. A girl's gotta have break every once in a while. I have no one to blame (as usual) but myself. Instead of dedicating my entire Saturday to completing some of these projects, I spent it with my family.

While I didn't regret it at the time, now I am filled with guilt. Something. Will. Not. Get. Done. How do I choose? I need to get all of them done. Unless I stay up half the night tomorrow night, I am in trouble. The problem with doing that is I will have to work all day on very little sleep, then go to class (which is 45 minutes away from home). I will have to sit there for four hours and then drive home at ten at night. This is not very safe.

Truthfully, I think I am too wimpy to pull it off. I knew that taking an extra class this semester was going to be tough. I did it because I want to graduate ASAP. Desperately. My kids want me to graduate. Very desperately. The DQ asked me yesterday if she will still have to fold clothes when I finish school. Hahahaha. Uummm, that would be a big fat yes. While she is a sensitive loving, obedient child, she despises housework. (I think she gets that from her father).

Yet I don't feel guilty about having her help out. It's good for her. It helps me. It teaches her some responsibility. I don't think you do your child any favors by not making them help out. Someday they are going to be out in the real world. In the real world, I will not go over to her house and clean it for her, or do her laundry. I plan to be doing whatever it is that people do when their children are grown. Take up a hobby or something. Buy an RV and travel. Whatever I am doing, it won't be taking care of my grown children's houses.

Well now that I have gone all over the map with this blog, I think I will retire for the evening. My stomach is growling. I haven't even had dinner yet. Sniffle. Sniffle.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

You Need A What?!!

If you have seen any of the pictures I have posted of my girls, then you know that The DQ has really long hair. More often than not I end up helping her wash it because of the length. The DQ is EXTREMELY modest so I try to make sure to be sensitive when I am helping her in the bathtub.

This morning as I was helping her wash her hair, I caught a glimpse of her chest. I looked at her to make sure she didn't see me looking. I peeked again. Yep, sure enough the child is getting boobs. I don't know any other way to say it. I was shocked. She just turned nine in August. NINE!!! I didn't even need a training bra until I was in 6th grade. I was eleven. I thought we might have some premature puberty going on when she got some pimples on her forehead a month or so ago, but I was not prepared for the mosquito bites that have emerged.

We made a trip to Wal-Mart and I bought her a..........beginner bra. (I hate calling it a training bra, what are they training for anyway? the Boob Olympics)

The DQ is my baby. I probably wont have any more children, so this is especially difficult for me. She still plays with toys. She still watches cartoons on TV. She wants a Cabbage Patch Kid for Christmas. She still likes me to tuck her in. She has NO BUSINESS getting boobs at nine years old.

That's not the only thing. I discovered that she hasn't believed in Santa for a couple of years now. On one hand, that makes things easier for me. I don't have to hide everything the way I used to. I can put all of the presents under the tree instead of just a few. On the other hand, I really wanted a little more time for her to believe in the magic of Santa.

I had a very serious talk with her about not telling other kids what she knows. I hate that kids ruin it for other kids by telling them the "Santa Secret". Which is not to be confused with "Secret Santa". She has younger cousins and I don't want her blabbing to them about it.

I can't fight time or premature puberty. I can only make the best of it and enjoy the time I left to raise the girls. The older I get and they get, the less I want them to grow up.




















mmmmmm......maybe she's not growing up TOO much.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Christmas Envy and Mean Mama

Have you ever had a week or two that just sucked? That's what the last two weeks around here have been like. I got a scratch on my eye and had to go the eye doctor. He charged me 60 bucks to tell me to wear my glasses for a couple of days until my eye healed.
1. I already had the sense to take out the contacts.
2. He charged me 60 bucks to tell me to take out the contacts.
3. Then he wanted me to come back the next day so he could charge me ANOTHER 60 bucks to "check" on my eye.
4. I thought this was a complete waste of time and money and I did not go back the following day.
5. Couldn't he have just told me over the phone to take out my contacts?
6. He charged me 60 bucks to tell me to take out the contacts.

I screwed up my checking account and bounced checks left and right. I have another question. Why will the bank continue to approve transactions on your check card if you don't money in your account? I'll tell you why. So they make another buck off of you.

One of the cell phones on my account broke. I bought the phone less than a year ago so it was still under warranty. I took the phone to the cell phone company. Guess what. No, really guess. They didn't have a replacement model in the store. They had to have it sent FedEx. Someone had to be there to sign for it or they would send the phone back to the warehouse. I had it sent to my work to ensure it was signed for. The replacement phone I got was all beat up and looked ten times worse then the one I already had.

I was already feeling stressed and irritated. Throughout the day the more I thought about it, the more I seethed. After I got off work I called customer service and complained. The CS representative asked me if there was anything wrong with the phone. I told him I didn't think so, but I take care of my phones and I don't want a phone that looks like someone slammed it on a sidewalk a few times. He suggested I try ANOTHER store location to see if they had a suitable replacement on hand.

I did. They CS rep in the store had not one ounce of friendliness in his entire body. Do you remember the Visine commercial where the very boring, bland guy says in a monotone, "Visine. It. Gets. The. Red. Out. I swear I think this guy works for my cell phone company now.

I was able to get a suitable replacement. It really irritates me that you buy a phone, it breaks, and they act like giving you a decent phone is going to send them into bankruptcy. I spend a great deal of money on cell phones. We have a family plan that includes three phones. The least they could do is send me a decent phone.

Then, a couple of days ago I was getting in Sissy's car and whacked the side of my head on the side of her car. It hurt so bad I felt it all the way down to my jaw. Sissy laughed at me. She laughed at me. I was VERY irritated. I told her it isn't nice to laugh at someone when they are really hurt.

Last night I went over to my sister's house and stayed until about 11 pm. I got home and realized I had left my house keys at her house. I gave up. I drove back across town and just slept on her couch.

My toilet is broken. It leaks water out the back unless you keep the water turned off. I'm broke. I keep hurting myself and I have Christmas light envy. I drive all through my neighborhood and look at all the beautiful outside lights that everyone has put up. Do we have any outside lights? Nope. No inflatable Santa. No inflatable snowman, or reindeer, or elves. No candy canes. No wreath. No garland. I do have some very pretty stuff INSIDE THE HOUSE. WHERE NO ONE can see it. There are a couple of reasons for my being Christmas light challenged.


1. I have NO IDEA how to go about stringing up Christmas lights.
2. I just can't seem to bring myself to spend the extra money on outside decorations.
3. This is because I have bounced checks all over town and I had to pay 60 bucks to the stupid eye doctor who told me to take out my contacts.
4. I am afraid of heights. Even if I did buy the stuff, I think I would hyperventilate if I got up on a ladder.

I have NO clean clothes to wear. My laundry is piled up to the ceiling. This semester is coming to a close and I am up to my eyeballs in school work. I actually left my house today wearing a pair of sweat pants and a sweatshirt. I have not left my house this dressed down in years. I think it is some kind of single woman phenomenon. I feel like I should at the very least, be wearing a pair of jeans and a cute sweater every time I leave the house. Not today. My family was actually shocked to see me dressed this way. I will say that sweatpants are very comfy. And warm. I might start dressing like this more often. Wouldn't I just be a crazy and wild woman?

Because I am a LITTLE stressed, every little annoying thing is really getting on my nerves. I was going in to work and dropped a couple of things I was carrying. I thought, "That's just great, one more thing going wrong in my life". Isn't it funny how something so stupid can bother you when you are stressed? I confess to being a little on the melodramatic side lately.

On a lighter note, I went to my sister Marlette's house today. We were talking about games we played as kids. One of the games we played was called Mean Mama. The idea is that one kid has a belt and chases all the other kids through the house, hitting anyone who gets too close. I don't mean little taps with the belt. I mean as hard as you can. We thought this was fun. What kind of sick, demented kids play a game like that? Couldn't we have played a nice game of Go Fish? Or Monopoly? I really don't know what was wrong with us. We were really strange yet today, when we were reliving playing that game, we thought it was pretty funny. I was going to break some of this up into more than one blog. Due to my constant procrastination, if I do not blog about all of it now, it will never get done.

Monday, November 26, 2007

O' Christmas Tree

After the flurry of Thanksgiving activity, I find myself unable to do anything more than sit on the couch or sit at the computer. Friday, I went to Martin's Nursery here in town to pick out a Christmas tree. I don't have a truck, so we have to fold down the back seat, shove the tree in as far as it will go and tie the trunk down. I have done this for about the last four years. So, the girls and I pick out the perfect tree load it up and head home. Sissy and I lugged the tree into the house by ourselves and put it in the stand, also by ourselves.
















Thus, the annual family tree decorating ceremony commenced.














































Surprisingly, the girls are EXTREMELY sentimental about helping decorate the tree. If I DARED to pick out or decorate the tree without them, they would try me for mutiny and make me walk the plank. One of the traditions I created several years ago, is to buy an ornament for each member of the family. I try to pick out something that reminds me of them or something that reminds of something about them. Sissy is really into the Christmas spirit this year. I think it's because she officially gets her car at Christmas.

















Anyway, after the tree was all decorated, I decided a trip to the store for milk and cookies was in order. I went out to start Sissy's car and noticed that we had left the trunk open. When I went to close it, it wouldn't snap shut. When I had taken the tree out, I had cut the twine with scissors, leaving the knot still attached to the latch of the trunk. I couldn't find the flashlight so I got out my cell phone and found a lighter. First I tried to burn the twine off the latch. I would also like to point out that it was thirty something degrees while all this was going on. The twine wouldn't burn off. I went back into the house and got a pair of scissors. Now I have my cell phone in one hand (for the light) a pair of scissors in the other and I am trying to cut this small, melted piece of twine off the latch so the trunk would close. WE REALLY wanted those milk and cookies. I stood outside for about 15 minutes trying get the twine off. Finally, I was suggested to me that I use the clicker to hit the trunk button. Maybe the latch was already in the locked position. Sure enough that's what the problem was. So off we went for milk and cookies.

Prior to us decorating the tree, we tested all the lights to make sure they were still working. They were. When we got back from the store, the topmost set of lights had gone out on the tree. Great. Now I have to take everything off the tree, and start all over again. I was not impressed.
I get so excited for Christmas every year. Yet I always forget what pain in the butt tangled up lights are. Tangled hooks too. And lights that don't work. And villages that burn down on Thanksgiving Day. And trunks that wont close. And pine needles all over my floor. And missing ornaments.

My sister also experienced some light issues. I suggested that she test hers before we put them on the tree and sure enough, about half her lights didn't work. We got her light issues handled, and I still hadn't fixed my tree yet. I went back home and started taking the lights off the tree and guess what happened. The freakin' lights started working again. They have been working ever since then. Thank goodness I didn't take all the decorations off the tree. I was too lazy for that. I decided that we could get the lights off without taking the decorations off. If I had taken all the decorations off the tree and then the lights started working, I probably would have pitched the whole tree out the back door. And then burned it. Along with my village.

I have also developed a strange illness recently. Every time a camera comes near me, my eyes start to blink. I can't help myself. Hence the squinty eyed look that will now be seen in all my pictures. I am hoping this is only a temporary illness, brought on by too much picture taking over the holidays.
















Thursday, November 22, 2007

Thankgiving Day! Hooray!














































































































I was thinking yesterday about how when I was a little girl, I wanted to be an only child. I hated being part of such a big annoying family. Someone was always fighting or taking my stuff. Because I was older than the rest of the kids, I started babysitting at around twelve. I would save my money, and I could always count on someone to find my stash, and go to the store and buy candy with MY money. I would be so furious. I wondered why I had to be born into the family I was born into. Why couldn't I have been an only child? Why?




Then I started thinking about how much fun we have when we all get together now. The joking, the telling of childhood stories, even the bickering. I love all of it. Then I started thinking about how different it must be to be in a small family. Maybe you have a brother or a sister, a couple of aunt and uncles, and that's it. How strange it must be. I can't imagine not having a big family.

I told my sisters last night that God knew I needed to be a part of a big family. I wouldn't be happy otherwise. This is what I am thankful for. All my sisters, Alicia, Dejah, and Marlette. I am so thankful that we all love each other and do not hold grudges over the things we did to each other when we were growing up. We were all a product of our environment, and we have all overcome many obstacles to be the people we are today.


I am thankful that God choose me to be my girls' mother. I am so lucky to have such wonderful children. They are such great kids. They are fun, loving, forgiving, all the things that I want them to be.

I am thankful for the opportunity to go back to school and further my education. Getting an education is a precious thing that should never be taken for granted. It wasn't that long ago when the idea of going to college was like someone telling me I could fly to the moon. I have Sissy to thank for that. If she wasn't here helping me with The DQ on the nights I have class, none of it would be possible.


Everyone came and ate and bickered(exactly as I predicted). You can't have that many strong willed, opinionated women in the same house and not have some differences of opinion. It was a pretty great day overall. Oh I almost forgot. Last week I put up my Christmas decorations (minus the tree). I have a village that I put on top of my entertainment center. I put a couple of tealight candles out around the village to give a holiday glow. All was well until somehow the fake cotton snow underneath the village CAUGHT FIRE. Thank goodness it was a small fire and easily distinguished. It burned the Christmas lights to a crisp. It is the very first picture. Unfortunately, due to some technical difficulties, I am unable to move the pictures around like I wanted to.
In tribute to my family I am in no order listing all the peeps in the pictures:
Me
Melissa
Kering
Nicholas
Logan
Dejah
Marlette
Alicia
My mom
Joshua
Lee
Matthew
Kasie
Happy Thanksgiving to all my family and friends far away. We are thinking of you today.

Twas The Night Before Thanksgiving


Twas the night before Thanksgiving and all through the house.......












My sisters very wisely decided that I could not be left alone to prepare the Thanksgiving turkey. They decided to rally the troops and have a turkey intervention.















Bet and Logan injecting that poor defenseless bird. I bet it was fun for the kids to have a chance to be the ones to inject something.















All the kids got to help get the turkey ready. My very important job was to supervise and take pictures. I can't be trusted with raw meat. (No.....really, I can't)















Sissy does not looked pleased.

















I think the adults had more fun than the kids.















The bug boy was an excellent helper!

















From left to right myself, Bet, and Dejah (two of my sisters)




From the top: My daughter "Sissy" next on the left, one of DQ's friends, The DQ, then Bug Boy(my nephew in the red) and Little Fisherman in the yellow (also my nephew)













There was a lot of noise, a little confusion, and a whole lot of fun. Thank goodness my sisters are smart enough to know that I needed serious help with the turkey. My regular blog readers will know that I just recently decided to seriously take up learning to cook. It is my turn to host the annual family Thanksgiving get together, since I have been learning to cook off and on for about a month, I am not ready to deal with a turkey all alone. The thought of trying to serve (gulp) fifteen people was a tad overwhelming. Thank goodness for big families-more people to help!

Monday, November 19, 2007

To Skip or Not to Skip???

I really hate to miss any of my classes. This feeling of guilt plagues me every time. (Well, almost every time). The dilemma is that I will be having my entire close family over on Thursday for Thanksgiving. I have an English Composition class on Wednesday night. While I will be getting some help, and some guests will be bringing food, I still have quite a bit to get done. My house is ALMOST as clean as I want it to be. I need to take some things up to the bonus room. (Just to get it out of sight). I have three pies to bake and will probably have some last minute shopping to do.Blah.Blah.Blah.

Gosh, I get sidetracked so easily don't I? Anyway I don't see how in the world I will be able to attend school and sucessfully get everything else done. Well, I COULD get it done by staying up half the night, yet I find myself unable to make such a sacrifice. The family get togethers at my house are few and far between. This is because we have a rotation schedule. Therefore I would not want my lack of sleep to run off everyone. See how considerate of others I am? Nor would I want to be nodding off right in the middle of someone telling a story.

All of this seemingly useless information does have a point. I REALLY think I should skip class on Wednesday night and get my stuff done around the house. When I first started school I wanted so much to get all A's. Now that I am in the final months, I really could care less. As long as I pass with a C, I will be happy. I know that is the wrong attitude to have, but I can't seem to help myself.

In other news, The DQ approached me about a week ago with a very serious look on her face. We had a conversation that went something like this:

DQ: Mommy, I need to tell you something that is really important. I am sooo serious.

Me:(In my head) Oh Lord, what is it? Is she going to tell me one of her friends is being abused? Is she failing in school? Please don't let it be her period paying a call early!

Me:(Out loud). OK honey, I'm listening.

DQ: Mommy, I want one of those Rescue Pets REALLY bad. If you don't get me anything else on my list, I HAVE to have a Rescue Pet.

Me: (In my head again). Is that all? Thank God! I really thought something serious was going on here.


I would like to address her obsession with animals. I have never seen anything like it. I have to confess that I am not an animal lover. I have no desire to have pets....... that's why I have children. I have NO IDEA where she gets this from. When she was younger(and still today) her number of stuffed animals far exceeds the number of baby dolls that she has. She has a pretty extensive collection of animals and toys from The Littlest Pet Shop series. She loves all animals. Cats, dogs, birds, bunnies, etc. She decided a while back that one of the cats smelled bad and gave him a bath. On her own. I didn't ask her to do it. I didn't even hint that she should do it. She actually called me at work and asked my permission to give the cat a bath. I just don't see how she can be my kid, yet the resemblence is too much for me to deny.

So I guess I will be off this weekend to hunt for a Rescue Pet...........................I.Am.A.Sucker

Saturday, November 17, 2007

More Holiday Cheer




As I sit here tonight at 11:30 p.m., I can't help but feel a slight sense of satisfaction. I did not do ANY school work today. No sir. No algebra, no paper writing, and no online work. I got up at the leisurely time of 9:30 this morning. I made coffee. I checked emails. I surfed the internet for a few minutes. The DQ spent the night with one of her friends, as she frequently does on Friday nights.

I really enjoy these breaks. It's really a win-win situation for both of us. She gets to socialize with her friends, and her being gone is an opportunity for me to have a little break. Back in the day, her dad and I lived in the same state. That was nice because he could get her on the weekends and I didn't have to feel guilty about the time she was spending away from me.

Then he moved out of state, and eventually I moved to another state also. This meant that the days of me getting a guilt free break were over. Now that she is getting a little older, she really enjoys spending time with her friends. Since I am having fifteen people at my house for Thanksgiving, I decided to indulge in some much needed house cleaning. I shamefully admit that it has been a really long time since I REALLY cleaned the house. Clutter was EVERYWHERE. Dirt was everywhere. Dust was beginning to take over every corner of the house.

Don't get me wrong. Housework is done around here......by a 15 year old and a 9 year old. While I do appreciate all their efforts and help, nobody cleans like Mom cleans. I pulled out all the couch cushions. You would be surprised at the collection of extremely revolting things that get in a couch. I took down the shower curtain. I put all the clutter in a large pile in the living room floor. Once I got into it, I decided that since I am embarking on the busiest time of the year at work, and attempting to feed my entire family on Thanksgiving without killing them, that now is the time to drag out all the Christmas decorations. I added a few new pieces to my collection this year, and I was REALLY excited to get everything out.

Yes I do realize that it is the week before Thanksgiving. Yes, I do realize that technically it is too early to decorate for Christmas. Ask me if I care.

1. I WILL NOT have the time to do it next weekend. (As I will still be recovering from having a house full on Thursday)

2. No one ever comes to my house anyway to point out that it is too early.

3. Because of number 2 I will be the only one who looks at the stuff anyway.

4. I ENJOY my Christmas decorations therefore I should enjoy having them out a little early.

5. I will probably put up a tree next week. If I do, it will not be as overwhelming because the rest of the decoration will be finished.

6. I just really wanted to do it today.

7. After reviewing all the reasons, I realized that since I did get them out and up early, at least I can force my family to ooohhhh and aaaahhh over them.

So I accomplished giving my living room a really thorough cleaning, put out all my decorations (with the help of my lovely sister, Marlette). She really gave me some great ideas, and I am really happy about the way everything looks. I also got several loads of laundry done including washing some of our fall/winter blankets.

My kitchen is ALMOST as clean as I like it to be, minus the floor needing to be mopped. The computer desk actually sort of resembles a desk again. For a while there it was starting to look like a paper recycling location. This is due to me doing my algebra on scrap paper and leaving the ten pages on the desk every time I attempted to due homework or take a quiz.

I am feeling guilty about one thing. I took a mental survey of all the gifts I bought for The DQ. While she has a decent number of presents, I didn't get her anything really great yet. I don't know how other families operate, but I like to get the girls at least one special or large gift that they really want. She wanted an Ipod Nano. She already has the Ipod Shuffle, but would like an upgrade. I bought her one, but because of my computer configuration, the new Ipod Nano is not compatible with my computer. So I took it back. She also wants a digital camera. I am not sure at this point if there will be enough money in December for me to get her one. I actually told another relative they could get her one. This solves a couple of problems. The first one is that in the event that I can't get her one, that she will still get one. The second problem this solves is that she has numerous relatives on her dad's side of the family.

If they all pitch in and get her the camera, I don't have to worry about how unfair it is to Sissy for The DQ to get a large box of ten or so presents from them, leaving Sissy out in the cold. I know this is not done intentionally, it just makes me feel better about things being fair in this house. I did have to downgrade Christmas this year because of the bad year my company had. I think I mentioned in a previous blog no bonuses this year. FYI-family members. If you click on the word blog, you can go to a prior blog in which I posted pics of stuff she wants for Christmas. I HAVE NOT purchased any of the items shown.

As I was puttering around the house today, I took a moment to appreciate doing normal family things. It feels good to just clean my house while Sissy is in her room talking up a storm on her phone. This is why I don't regret anything in my life, even the bad. In order for me to truly appreciate the simple things, the good things, all that crap I went through had to happen. Sometimes God's plan hurts, but it all works according to His purpose.

Overlook my moments of mushiness, I find they happen with alarming frequency as I get older. A couple of weeks ago I cried before my sister's baby shower because I thought it was sweet the way we all pulled together to make it happen. Go figure.......