Monday, December 28, 2009

valley trip

i had hoped to start the day off early, but B's cousin showed up unexpectedly & then the conversation happened, so we left late. once we got to town we visited nana for a bit. she seemed to be doing ok, but her spirits weren't as high as before & her caregiver told me they were worried about a few things.

my uncles have been in complete control of everything because that's how they wanted it. the caregiver explained to me that nana is running out of $$ & they want to put her in a convalescent home. nana wants to use her house to pay the caregivers & stay in her home. the problem is the house was put in my uncle's name a long, long time ago, so on paper it's not her house & my's his house.....his $$. the end.

later we took Z over to cousin C's house so she could watch him for the night while we went to visit my hs buddies. the party almost didn't happen, we thought it was canceled for a bit there & a few people were sick or no shows, so it wasn't quite the crowd we'd originally anticipated. we still managed to have a good time though. we picked Z up about 3am, cousin C said he stayed up until midnight which ended up being a good thing because he slept in the next morning & i didn't have to listen to spongebob cartoons!

when we got up we went back over to nana's for a bit. she was happy to see us, but then another one of my uncles called & after that she seemed very distant. i tried talking with her, but she kept saying she couldn't hear me even though i was shouting. the caregiver ordered some chinese takeout & once nana ate, she seemed better. the caregiver told me again of their worries & told me to tell my mom. she also told me i'm the only family that visits nana; which was pretty upsetting considering how big the family is & how many people are nearby.

after leaving nana's went visited with hs buddies for a bit & then we're back on our way home.

Saturday, December 26, 2009


on christmas eve i called my mom & left a vm. i told her i hadn't done anything wrong that i was aware of & she was being mean to me & to Z. on christmas day she called & left a merry christmas vm. the next day she called & left another vm asking if Z could come spend the weekend with her.

now, i've written about this, but now matter how i try it's long & drawn out & ugly, so i'm going to try really, really hard to be brief here.

i called her back & we talked finally. she told me she had a horrible day here, an awful thanksgiving, that we were very unhappy people. i was completely unaware of her feelings & asked her to explain, because we didn't feel that way at all. she told me i was mean to her all day long, that i didn't smile or laugh all day & it was obvious B & I were arguing & not speaking to each other.

her view of the entire day was completely & absolutely askew. she gave me example after example of situations where she twisted reality & victimized herself. i'll share one - remember when i called her that morning to let her know cousin & aunt had shown up? i thought she would want to come over once they arrived, but she didn't. i thought she was still preparing food & that's why she wasn't coming over until later; nope, food was prepped the night before she was cleaning her floors. so i JOKED & said "you should come clean mine" because remember mine were dirty? she said i TOLD her "to come clean my floors."

alright, that's all i can say before i go ballastic.

Friday, December 25, 2009

christmas 09

it wasn't until late in the day on christmas eve that i decided what treats i was going to make...procrastinator extraordinaire, yes? yeah, so about 3pm i decided to make a pumpkin pie, a chocolate pie, chocolate chip cookies with some oatmeal thrown in there & some rasperry crumb concoction. oh yeah, & i cooked a pot of beans & made chicken tacos for dinner too. i finally finished about 9pm & was toast, but once Z went to bed, presents needed to be wrapped.

i thought after last year's "santa is your parents" statement the santa deal was done, but nope, it's still on. we received one present early in the month & when Z noticed it under the tree he asked "how come santa brought it early?" -> so no other presents under the tree.

we took Z to see santa this year [i know we're bad parents for never having done it before. he was too young to understand, then we were in hell for 4 years & santa doesn't go there.] i think part of the reason he wanted to go was a friend told him his younger sister pulled santa's beard off. i thought for sure the only reason Z wanted to go was so he could pull the beard off too, but surprisingly he didn't.

we got to bed about 1am. thankfully Z slept in until about 7:30, we heard him stirring & when we came out he had already organized all the presents into piles but not unwrapped a single one - impressive!

for being broke & unemployed we had a pretty nice christmas - I got B a bunch of shirts & a wallet, B got me a new camera & Z got a ton of toys. oh & we got a family wii from B's mom, which is painful but fun.

the presents my mom sent, well, i couldn't bring myself to put them out as wrong as that may be. i was afraid Z would ask why grammie wasn't here, why did she mail the presents, etc. questions i didn't have a real answer to myself & that in itself made me upset - why was i the one that had to explain her craziness to him?

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

B's parents visit

yeah, i know, i'm late, the visit was a few weeks ago...

i picked them up from the airport & it really was a gorgeous day in SD. B was at the apex of finals chaos & group studies so he was a bit pre-occupied & Z had to go to school. the house was kinda quiet & finally when B & Z were both free, a storm hit & it rained the entire time. so, we didn't do much other than hang out.

B's mom made some chicken & dumplings one night. i had some chicken that needed to be cooked & for the life of me i could not figure out a dang thing to make with it. i was starting to catch a cold & of course, my period had just started too, so i was useless & lost in the kitchen. B's mom had talked about making dumplings before, something i'd never tried, but she found a recipe in one of my cookbooks & decided to give it a whirl.

let me tell you something pretty strange....she followed the the T. weird right? i mean even when she measured out the flour, she asked for the dry measuring cups, not the liquid measuring one. this is something WAY new for my kitchen. & when she cooked the chicken she measured out the water. & when i asked if she wanted to put some onion, celery & garlic in there she said the recipe didn't call for it.

[please note that although i'm kinda making in fun of her, i just mean it's so completely different from the way i've seen my family cook, it's not a bad thing at all, just way different.]

we did end up straying from the recipe in the end [i win!] b/c there wasn't a lot of liquid & she was going to drop the dough in there & we figured we'd end up with a solid mass of chicken & dumpling rather than a soupy/gravy like thing. we added an entire can of chicken broth & it ended up perfect.

so now, i'm thinking maybe i should try & follow recipes more closely.

Monday, December 21, 2009

fa la la la la shit

3 week anniversary past yesterday. yes, i was completely aware of the day, but for the most part i was able to push it out of my head. but then, i saw the postman drop something off at the door & when i looked, it was from my mother -> she mailed Z's christmas gift.

so i guess that means she's not coming over for christmas....
& probably doesn't want to celebrate her 60th birthday a week later.

i haven't bought a christmas present for her yet. i try to think of something she would like, but am unable to. when i'm out shopping, i look for stuff for her, but nothing feels right. i don't think i can buy anything until i'm in a better place about the situation & i'm not sure what that's going to take. i was feeling somewhat better about it, but then the box arrived & made it new all over again.

the simple fact that she won't tell me what's going on makes me think that whatever is wrong, what ever i did, was really nothing, but something she's completely, absolutely blew out of proportion to epic dimensions in her head....

Friday, December 18, 2009

continuation from yesterday

as if the morning wasn't chaotic enough, by the time school was out i was debating if i should let Z go to his afterschool place to play & get out some of that energy or did i think he was wore out from the day's events & needed to come home to rest? i decided there were only 2 more days of opportunity [read - me time] & i didn't want to waste them so i let him stay. i'm guessing not more than 3 minutes passed from that decision point when my phone rang.

it was the afterschool place, relaying a message i've heard too many times "come get your kid, he hit somebody".

the head lady there has been really working with us. yeah, Z's had trouble before, over the past couple of weeks it's been him not following direction & staring down some of the leaders. isn't that crazy? yeah, i know they're teenagers, but they are adults, still wet behind the ears but adults & Z tries to threaten them with his facial expressions.

this time he kicked another kid because they were playing tag & Z didn't want to be it. he needs to either learn to play or sit it out. [unfortunately this is from me, that's why i don't play & Z has to figure out what's going to work for him.]

the program director wants to kick Z out, but the head lady is actually on Z's side & told her boss how we always pick him up right away when he acts up & sometimes we don't allow him to go the next day as punishment, but as of right now, his status is up in the air.

as punishment Z wasn't allowed to dress up for pj day today & he only went to school for a couple of hours because it was a party day. i didn't even let him stay for the pizza lunch & of course, he didn't go to the afterschool christmas party either.

i hate that he's putting us in this position at this time of year.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Z got in a fight with a fire hydrant, guess who won?

i gave it all away in the title didn't i?
let me tell you how my day has gone [wow, my typing is absolutely atrocious right now, i can't even type a 3 letter word right.]

5:45am woke up & thanked God that i don't have to get up that early for anything
7:21 woke up, finally had a decent night's sleep, got the boy up
7:34 helped the boy tie his shoes because he's forgotten how to do it & insists on doing it his own way which doesn't ^*&*&^ work
7:48 i'm changing when i hear Z crying & yelling for me, so i run out to find him sitting in a pile of tears with his shoes off. his socks slipped into his shoes & he didn't like it so he took his shoes off to fix the socks but then couldn't tie his shoes so he sat there & cried.
7:52 talked to B about cancelled christmas party [boohoo] while Z brushes his teeth
7:55 missed the phone call from my aunt O
8:01 we're in the car & late for Z's reading lab
8:06 drop Z off, tell him to ask the reading lab dude something, hugs, kisses, goodbyes, etc
8:15 back home, continue conversation w/B, get my coffee & tell him i'm going to call my aunt. i'm sure she's running interference for my mom, but this is not something i want to put off.
8:20 i'm looking for my phone to call her aunt when B tells me it's in the bedroom ringing. it's the school, Z fell & hit his head on something on the playground & i should come take a look at him. [really, i kinda didn't hear a lot of that because after i hear the word playground i'm wondering why the (&(*& wasn't Z in reading lab?!?!?!?!?]
8:27 get to school & see a decent size egg on Z's left temple, ask how he's doing? fine. so then why was he on the playground & not in reading lab? he forgot. i go talk to the reading instructor to check Z's attendance & he said it's been good. then i went to his classroom to see if he would miss anything if we brought him home & she said it would be fine. the bump was turning blue so we decided he should come home & relax for a couple of hours.
8:45 we all come home & have Z sit in bed for a spell
8:50 i call my aunt back, i'm anxious about the call now that i've had a little time to think about it, but she doesn't answer.
9:04 aunt O calls me, just chit chat; i guess she's just checking in on my mother's behalf.
9 - 11 i check on Z every 20 minutes or so, he's fine & the bump is going down.
10:38 Z feels well enough to get up & have an orange
11:03 take the boy back to school & he tells me what happened - he was playing tag with Isabelle & he turned & ran into a fire hydrant. [so now i understand why he 'forgot' about reading lab bc he told me previously he wanted to get a christmas present for her, so he must have a crush on her.]
11:20 happy to be child-free again i head off to walmart to p/u a few things i forgot.
12:14 get home & realize my present boxes are larger than my mailing boxes.
1:47 presents wrapped & craft skills have been put to the test to make everything fit in those *%&^% mailing boxes.
2:23 dropped the *%&^% mailing boxes off at the post office.
2:47 finally get something to eat & notice my still 1/2 full cup of coffee on the table from this morning.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

it's that time of year

well, i looked for a post last year, but didn't find one, but i did find one for K year, the penquin play. this year the school had a musical performance; Z's class sang feliz navidad & jingle bells.

Z was pretty robotic for the first song; serious face, eyes locked on the leader, very little hand motions. jingle bells was even better, er worse, i guess it depends on how you look at it. i don't think he sang more than a couple of words & his bell ringing was so far out of rhythm even B was laughing.

he was trying, really hard, just singing + hand motions + bell ringing = too much for the lil guy

Monday, December 14, 2009

the irony of my life

sundays are the days when i really notice the absence of my mother in my life. i normally call her randomly throughout the week for something here & there, although sometimes that doesn't happen, but the sunday phone calls almost always do.

just a few days after "the call" i was-this-close to picking up the phone to ask her something because i was making tortillas for the first time. wonder how well that would have went? uh, oops, i forgot, you're not talking to me....

i'm still angry, still hurt, still completely unaware of what i did wrong.
it's christmas.
we're finally back home after 4 years.
i have a 7 yr old child that is completely aware of her absence & i'm left to explain it.

so yeah, 2 weeks & no talk....
but, guess what?
on sunday, my dad called.

did you get that? my dad
i know weird huh?

i hadn't seen him since Uncle M's funeral last august. the last time we spoke i didn't know we were moving & when i tried to call him the # didn't work. so when we moved we lost connection, although he knows where my family is & can get in touch with them. my aunt O told me he'd visited her just after my reunion & my nana told me he'd come over when she got out of the hospital; it was just a matter of time.

he was a bit confused, started talking about how he saw me 6 months ago at the funeral [um, more like 16 months ago]. he did get the back surgery done & he's doing better except while he was recovering he contacted TB, he's still taking meds for that. then he told me he was supposed to come to SD & he was planning on stopping by but his trip was cancelled.

um wha?
haven't seen or talked to him in over a year & we ain't ever been on great terms, but he's making plans to come visit with no notice.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

got singer?

the saturday after B was rear-ended we visited nana. i had planned on going during the week, but had been putting it off & it worked out well to go on the weekend so the boys could go with me.

the visit was nice, nana was talkative & she enjoyed having B & Z around [they are entertaining]. nana still has 24 hour care & this time we met the main caregiver. when we asked if there was anything they needed, she gave me a list. we headed over to walmart & picked up a ton of stuff.

the doctor lifted nana's diet restrictions, but body limits what she can eat. she told me she when he first gave her the ok, she ate a hamburger & french fries, it was really good but couldn't keep it down. yeah, that's kinda heavy when you haven't had solids in weeks....i didn't ask if she'd had a beer yet....

then she asked if i was going to take the sewing machine. we had brought the truck. & she was finally home [so no one could say i took it]. but UGH!!!! the reality of it, still hurt.
it took the both of us to move it because although it's on wheels, they're tiny little metal ones that don't roll very well. B strapped it down in every conceivable direction with probably a dozen different ties & we brought the singer home.

we unloaded it & left it in the garage. i hadn't really looked at it since that little spell after hs when i went to live with nana. actually, i probably didn't even look at it then, it was just there in the room with me. the wooden top is basically plywood with varnish, hinges on the left side so it flips to the side. inside there's an opening; the bottom part lifts up towards you with one hand, while you use the other hand to lift the machine out, above where it needs to sit while you return the bottom part back in place to form a lip so the machine sits level.

i brought the drawers into the living room, planned on cleaning them out in the morning, but when i started taking the stuff out of them, i decided i couldn't. the contents: some of my nana's old pink rollers, an army guy, a blue peg from my lite-brite, etc. i decided those things belonged in there. after a few tears of course.

the link i previously used to show what the sewing machine looks like doesn't work & i did some searching to find another one but was unable to. when i get a chance i'll post my own pics.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

catching up with Z [not with depeche mode]

time flies in december...
november too, because remember i talked about Z's teacher nominating him for a lil award thingie? [here] well on friday [i don't remember which one now] but he got it! on fridays the school has flag salute outside & they recognize top readers, etc & they also had a "most improved for the 1st trimester", granted there were several, but Z was one of them & he got to walk up in front of the entire school. he also got a new tag (military style) to add to his necklace as part of the deal.

then last week make that 2 weeks ago, we had a meeting for the title 1 reading program that Z's been going to. it was raining, which you know in california = treacherous weather, so i kinda didn't want to go but we did. it was quick & i checked in w/the instructor on how Z was doing; he said Z had improved so much he was actually on the cusp of being at grade level but beings he was enjoying it so much they were just keeping him in there [why mess with a good thing?]. i was so relieved & glad that they were keeping him in the program just as good measure.

i'm so thankful for all the help he's finally getting at this school. he would probably be failing 2nd grade if we'd stayed in the desert & we'd probably have him tested for IEP by now. not that it would be a bad thing to have him tested, but it's obvious he just needed this little bit of help & that the problems he was having learning were so bad & so frustrating, that he was lashing out at everyone.

ok, last week [really this time] Z's teacher asked for some extra help so i was in the office doing stuff & i ran into the title 1 instructor guy. he told me state representatives had come in to review the program & Z was one of the kids they'd chosen to interview! the teachers chose the kids who'd benefited the most from the program & that's definitely Z.

the funniest part about it is afterwards when i asked Z about it, he told me he got another new tag for "principal's club" & that means he can sit at the principal's table during lunch, but most importantly he wanted me to understand sitting at the principal's table was a good thing & that he wasn't in trouble!!!!

yup, sitting at the lunch table with the principal is very different from sitting in the principal's office.

Friday, December 4, 2009

B's accident

the other day i was contemplating about talking w/B about raising the deductibles on the car insurance; it's been quite some time since we've had a claim & we could save some $$. he's been busy with school [end of the semester fun times & all], so it was a conversation that could wait...& i'm really happy about that, because:

B was on his way to class, stopped at a red light, when car 2 (behind him) rear-ended him because car 1's (behind car 2) brakes failed. thankfully, B was totally fine & the truck suffered minor damage. honestly, i must say, dodge you make a sturdy truck as only the tailgate was dented slightly although car 2's (an explorer) front end was mashed up. i'm sure the back of it didn't fair too well either.

turns out car 1 had their brakes worked on just the day before at the toyota dealership. i don't know how well they worked before the vehicle was taken in, but i'm gonna go with they worked worse afterwards. the guy said he pressed his brakes [near the steering wheel, he was disabled] but nothing happened! how scary is that? considering the circumstances, everyone was very fortunate.

Monday, November 30, 2009

maybe in a few days, or a few weeks, click

B's family stayed a couple of days & didn't leave until about noon on saturday. it was a beautiful morning, dark, grey, raining & even 2 rounds of hail - sweet!

when my mom left on thursday we hadn't cut into the pies, so i told her i would bring her some on sunday, sat night i called her to check in. she didn't answer & i figured she was either sleeping or out walking the dogs & didn't really think too much of it.

the next morning we all slept in late, company can be exhausting...
i called my mom again, but didn't answer so i left a message. Z & I spent the morning working on his school project & i told him once he was done we'd go to grammie's, actually i'd been telling him we were going since thursday. when he was just about finished i called my mom & finally she answered & told me:

"i can't talk to you right now, maybe in a few days, maybe in a few weeks" then she hung up on me.

happy thankgiving, merry christmas, it's the most wonderful time of the year...
my family is completely fucked up beyond all belief
how do you tell someone that without even explaining to them what you think they did wrong?

was she mad because dinner was late?
how do you rush a cooking turkey?
does she think this was a conspiracy to make her drive in the dark?
maybe we made her stay too late? [5:15 pm is really late right?]
did she have an anxiety attack because she was more than 5 miles from home?
maybe she got in a car accident & she's blaming me...I DON"T KNOW

so yeah, i cried most of the day over this yesterday. i'm hurt. i'm mad. i don't deserve this. i knew something was up with her before she came over for thanksgiving, i had hoped getting together would smooth whatever was wrong in her head things over, but instead they blew up.

i took something to help me sleep last night, so i dreamt of vampires [not hot edward-like ones] & robots trying to kill me, then another one where all my hs friends stopped talking to me, but at least i didn't dream about my mother [which would have been even worse].

Friday, November 27, 2009

thanksgiving 2009

thankgiving was a quiet one this year, i invited my mom & B invited his cousin & aunt over & that was it. ever since we've been back things have been weird with my mom, before she used to come over every sunday to visit, but she'd only been over once [for my birthday in july when we first got here]. it's not that i want or expect her to come over every week, but something's up & she's not telling me what's going on. i wasn't even sure she was going to accept my invitation for thanksgiving, but she did.

i called her that morning to find out what time she was coming over; she told me she'd prepared all her stuff the night before but she wouldn't be over until noon. a little weird right? it's thanksgiving don't you want to spend the day with us? apparently not.

B's cousin & aunt showed up early that morning. [i had spent the previous day baking all day long so the house was kind of a disaster & i had planned on cleaning before they got here, but oh well...] we sat, had coffee & talked while B & I prepared the stuffing. later in the morning we made some munchies and shortly thereafter my mom arrived with spinach dip & yummy pies.

it was a beautiful day & we sat outside on the back patio & talked or sat around the tv for a bit. i think it was about 3:30 when my mom told me she had a headache because she needed to eat. B checked on the turkey but it wasn't quite hot enough still; so that needed to cook a bit more, brown it & the side dishes also needed to go in the oven. it was probably about 4:30 when we sat down to eat, the turkey was fantastic, very juicy [we think the trick was B cooked it at 325 so it took longer, but it was worth it]. everything was really good & we all had a nice dinner.

my mom complained about it getting dark, so once we finished eating i helped her gather her stuff, gave her some leftovers & Z & I walked her out to her car. she seemed fine, just a little perturbed a bit about having to drive in the dark & being a whopping 13 miles away from home.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

trip to ghetto house

tuesday was supposed to be the baking day, but on monday night we got a call from the renter that the heater wasn't working. we had him try a few things, but no dice, so tues am we got up & headed north. when we left in july we knew there were a few things to wrap up, so the heater just made us stop delaying the trip.

the yard had just been mowed [we've been told he lets the grass go, like really GO] but the inside of the house was immaculate. honestly, i would eat off this guy's floor [something i would not do when i lived there! haha, well, it is all new flooring, so that does make some of the difference.] the house is decorated really nicely too [i'm jealous....& thinking of asking him to come decorate this house]. all in all we aren't going to complain about ugly yard when the inside is being kept up so nicely.
example: a soft blue sofa & a brown chair that has matching blue striping, the fabric from the chair is also used for drapery in the dining room.

we worked on a few things on the house & Rob came over to help. it was so great to see him, he seems to be doing pretty well there although he complained about how boring the job was. they took the motor out of the heater & determined that was the problem so we went to a couple of places to find a replacement. although it's a track home, so all of the nearby houses initially had the same heater, it's not a part they keep in stock so it had to be special ordered. we went back to the house & did a little more work then headed over to R's for a little bit.

we stayed there about 2 hours then got on the road, i hate driving that stretch at night so i was anxious to get going. there's about a 20 mile section where there's no passing, which is fantastic when you're stuck behind a car that is going between 40-50 mph that brakes whenever a car comes in the opposite direction. or there's a little hill. or a dip. or a curve in the road. or fornoreasonwhatsoever!!!! it was insane, but to make it all the more enjoyable i had a semi in the backseat with Z. awesome....

i don't know what the deal was with the car in front of me & i certainly didn't get wtf the semi was doing riding my tail. i was surprised B wasn't telling me to just pass the car; i guess he's learned that i have this uncanny ability to make cops manifest out of thin air when i do stuff like that so it's just better that i don't do it. we made it home safely though.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

almost impossible

one day last week B's biology study group came over; when they meet they bring donuts & beer. [i don't remember study group being like that...]

anyways, so yeah, there were donuts in the house, right & one day last week Z managed to be good ALL day long at school & ALL 2 1/2 hours at his after school place [that's a lot of behaving for this kid, seriously.] so i told him he could have a donut after ALL that exasperating being good stuff.

he ate the donut. licked his fingers. then checked his cheeks to see if any sugar granules were stuck there & then took an actual bite out of the paper napkin for a few pieces of sugar. you would think we'd never let him have any treats what so ever...

then he asked if he was good ALL day tomorrow, could he have another donut?

wow, well, let's see here:
1 - Z has to be good 2 days in a row
2 - at school & at after school place
3 - there's only 2 donuts left & that means B can only eat 1 donut tomorrow am

so, you may not know this, but i am not a betting person...however, this is something i would feel pretty safe about putting my money on....self control around here is, well, um, needs some work.

surprisingly, the stars aligned & all worked out. good thing i didn't call the local bookie.

tues visit & a story about chicken soup & my dad

after making this post, i called the hospital & spoke with nana, she told me they took her to the hospital because her tummy hurt. to say she's a little in the dark about her health would be an understatement, but it's probably for the best...
when i visited her last week, she told me they "they'd cut her open", suddenly aware that she'd had a surgery & to a certain extent seemed like she felt violated by the act. i told her if she didn't remember any of it, it was probably best & that comforted her some.

anyways, she told me they were discharging her from the hospital that day (monday).

so on tues mom & i went down to check on her. she was sitting in the living room; her color looked good & she was talkative. then my mom went into one of the rooms to look for some old books & when she came back she had an old hs annual. really old, 1963. i actually found a few people that i knew, well, i knew them as so&so's parents, but still funny to see these people in hs.

nana talked quite a bit more with my mom & for some reason they brought up an old story. a long, long time ago my mom had extreme oral surgery to have her wisdom teeth removed. the reason i say extreme is because i think the doctor used an old, rusty butterknife to work on her because after the surgery she got lock-jaw, i think she said it lasted for like 2 weeks...

can you imagine the lawsuit if that happened today?

so, beings my dad not worth his weight in salt....nana told my mom to come stay with her while she healed. nana was sick too, but my dad knew sick nana could take better care of my mom than he could so he gladly dropped her off & took my sweet lil baby ass over to his mom's house because he couldn't take care of me either. when he dropped off my mom in the morning, he did ask if they needed anything from the grocery store [alright, there's a bit of good in there] & nana told him to pick up a few things to make some chicken soup for the both of them.

and here is where my dad is my dad.

they waited all fricken day for him to return with the groceries. yup, both sick & stuck waiting for him. he didn't show up until sometime in the evening & he was all proud of himself that he remember to get everything. yeah. nice. stupid actually. just a tad inconsiderate. i don't know what the 2 of them did all day long. i know nana has never been one to keep a full pantry, so when she gave him a list of things she needed for soup, she [like any normal person] would expect the person to go get the stuff & return immediately. right? i mean what kind of person goes & f's off all day long when you have 2 sick people waiting for soup fixings?

and here is where my nana is my nana.

nana took the bag with the chicken in it & hit my dad with it.

Monday, November 16, 2009

1st trimester report card

let's just start with "WOOOOHOOO"

ok, settle down......geez!

so for life skills & work habits he got S (satisfactory) for everything except observing school/playground rules & demonstrating self-control, which ya know, considering some of the stuff he's pulled, is perfectly true. he got an N (needs improvement) but i wouldn't have been surprised if they'd given him a U (unsatisfactory).

now for the nitty gritty:
[because really, social skills...who needs them? look how well i function without them.]
writing - S & all 2's "partial mastery of grade level standards" for sentence structure, punctuation, spelling, content, yada....yada....yada.
reading - S & almost all 2+'s [yup, on the cusp of 3's, which is consistently demonstrates...] for word recognition, fluency & vocabulary!!!!!!!!!!!!
math - E (EXCELLENT!!!!) all 2+'s & one money [duh, we know what's important].

did you know in 2nd grade math they cover alegbra? because i took a pre-algebra class in jr high & that was considered kinda advanced.....
they also cover statistics, data analysis & probability, which i didn't take year...

and the big overall standardized assessments:
reading 41/52 = 78.8%
math 27/30 = 90%
hold on to your seats....75% is considered proficient!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

teach said she was really worried about Z in the beginning, because when he came into class he told her he didn't know how to do anything, not even add. i know that he could add & spell, but his reading was way, way behind. his progress in one trimester has been so significant she's going to nominate him for an award for most improved.

back to the hospital

i found out last night that nana is back in the hospital. she was taken on sat & admitted on sun for dehydration & some sort of infection (details are sketchy at best). the biggest concern though is that her veins aren't strong enough to hold an iv.

last time they'd used her arms & hands, she still has large bruises on her arms from them. this time they had to use a vein in her groin.

aunt A & cousin C are supposed to go visit her today & give us an update. my mom is going to try to get the day off tomorrow & we hope to head down to visit her.

UA is still causing crazy drama with the family; practically everyone doesn't want to visit nana (at the hospital or at her home) because the don't want to see him. i don't think i wrote about it earlier, but before my last visit nana had told my aunt A that she (nana) was worried about me coming to visit because my mother & i had "attacked" UA in the hospital.

no doubt a repeat of his words. no doubt he wouldn't explain that it's because he didn't want tell us his plans for nana. i would not put it past the man to put her in away & not let us know where she was at. he runs off everyone & then tries to convince nana he's the only one that cares about her. the man needs therapy....lots of it!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

calculating.....& possible pocket-protectors in our future

the other day Z was given a little positive reinforcement slip for doing well in PE. he told me they'd given out the slips before, but for some reason this time, a slip was given to 1 boy & 1 girl & they each got to pick out a prize. Z picked out a calculator.

are you off the floor yet?

yeah, i know...what?

if it helps explain things, it's blue & at the top has a locking & he got it so he can learn times. he's anxious to learn his times tables because all those smart girls from 1st grade last year that knew a couple of factors & that really got to Z. he must learn them. [finally my competitive nature is appearing! & as long as he's not punching or kissing them, i'm not complaining....]

today, Z walked around all day long sporting his calculator, finding different spots on his clothing to attach it. i'm kinda surprised he didn't hang it on his ear, maybe tomorrow. at one point B started to explain how cool pocket protectors were....hello, the award was for PE, honey....

monday we have our 1st parent/teacher conference. yeah, i'm a bit nervous. the reading lab has helped Z tremendously & the other day he moved up another [yeah, that makes 2] level in math! but that doesn't change some of the behavior issues he's shown, although significantly better than last year, still working on it.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

weds trip

i was planning on going to visit nana on tues, but on mon pm i realized weds was a holiday & Z wouldn't have school, so i decided to postpone the trip a day & take him with me.

we arrived about noon, nana was doing well. the house had been cleaned up & even Z said it looked nice, but needed more work. [just love the kid's honesty] nana looked well [girl got her hair done. funny of all the things one could want after getting out of the hospital, she wanted needed to have her hair colored.] i say all that in jest, it's actually meaningful to me, that she still cares about how she looks, still fighting.

her skin color was good & she was talkative although she wasn't wearing her hearing aid which made things a little difficult. Z tried explaining his pokemon game to her [which even i don't care to understand] & showing his scary reptile book [that she said was going to cause her nightmares].

Z & I went out & walked the backyard; it seemed strange, familiar yet changed. i spent so much time in that yard. i had told Z about all her fruit trees previously, so we walked & i pointed them out. the grapefruit tree [that only i ate the fruit from] had died & been removed, the pomegranate bushes covered her clothesline, the orange, peach & fig trees.

when we walked back into the house nana was in the hallway walking to the living room. she'd told me a physical therapist had come in & started working with her, but it was still wonderful to see. my greatest fear was after being in the hospital for a few weeks & having surgery her leg muscles would deteriorate too far.

before we left she asked me again when was i going to take the sewing machine. i told her we'd brought the truck down for the reunion to get it, but she was in the hospital then, that maybe the next time B could come with me & bring the truck. Z started acting up so we didn't stay much longer. i took him to the park so he could burn off some energy before getting on the road home.

out of nowhere i got nauseous & for a minute there i thought i was going to have to go puke in a park trash can like a wino. i'd felt weird all day & i guess the stress of worrying about a confrontation with UA had taken it's toll on me.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

trojan free

in the quamire of last week's chaos i managed to get a trojan on the laptop....excellent....i noticed IE was slow to load so i tried deleting all the history, cleaning up the drive, etc to no avail.

spybot found the trojan, but couldn't kill it, it was night of the living trojan....kept on coming back & started re-constituting files that had been deleted (from the recycle bin) months ago. i do thank spybot though, at least i knew what i was dealing with....

after some searching i located malwarebytes, the first run found 3 problems. it didn't list them out, but they were removed & so far the laptop has been virus free for over 24 hours, sweet. thank you malwarebytes!

now, back to regular posting.

Friday, November 6, 2009

it finally clicked

my cousin S sent some books over to help with Z's reading. i thumbed thru them quickly, they looked about his reading level & so at bedtime he asked if i would read one of the books to him. i said no, but he could read it to me. deal.

when he opened up the book it had more words than i expected; he said he couldn't read all that (about 5 or 6 sentences on 1 page). granted, it's more than he has been reading but his vocabulary has really grown, so i told him to just try it. i also figured maybe the following pages would have less sentences or if it was a lot, we could take turns reading pages.

he read the first page, stumbling on only a couple of words; the same on the next page & he just kept on reading. he didn't complain about the amount of sentences at all & if he came across a word he didn't know he just sounded it out & moved on.

mickey & the beanstalk, you brought tears to my eyes, he finally did it.

i was so proud of him & even he was excited that he read so much all by himself. the next morning, even though it was a school day, he got up early, came in & gave me a hug, then ran out of the room. he came back with another book in his hand & read another story to me.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

the good, the bad & the epically dysfunctional

yesterday mom & i headed down to visit nana. i didn't sleep well the night before, things have been a little weird with my mom since we moved back & i wasn't sure exactly, how that drive was going to go; it ended up being fine though.

when we got to the hospital, uncle asshole was there sitting in the corner. i said hi to him & to nana & then my mom started talking with nana, so i instigated a little chitchat with him (how are you, etc). his answers were brief but i didn't really think to much of it, i was being cordial & if he didn't want to get into details, i was fine with that.

then the nurse came in & told us nana was going to be discharged [fyi, this is the good part, relish it while you can], she would need 24 hour care & left. i asked my uncle what were we going to do & his response was "i'm handling it".
me - well, what are you doing?
UA - you don't need to know
me - yes, i do, she's my grandmother, i have the right to know what's going on with her.
UA - i'm handling it
me - why do you feel you have the right to keep this information to yourself? this isn't about you, this is about nana.
UA - you know what you did
me - no, i don't know 'what i did' [i honestly do not have a clue what he's talking about, the last interaction i've had with him was ~15 yrs ago at a party as his house, other than that we haven't had contact other than the christmas cards i sent him]

in the middle of the discussion, my mother is coming at him, from the left, then the right, seething words & pointing fingers in his face. she reminded me of a bee with a stinger; if it hadn't been so horribly awful, i probably would have been laughing my ass off at the scene....

i kept on telling my mom to relax, i wanted to get him to talk, i wanted to know what his problem was, but he wouldn't let anything out, apparently he doesn't want to solve the situation & prefers to just live with his hate & anger.

we went round & round but every response he gave me was a dead end. he told me i was like my mother [by then i was pissed & told him i'd rather be like her than him]. i told him he was being childish [& he said "oh yeah, i'm the one being childish" ????? really? think you aren't? you won't tell me what the f-ing problem is!] i finally told him you're the one that's going to have to live with yourself & the choices you've made.

i don't remember what or how it dissolved, i ended up leaving the room to go to the nurse's station. i went to get a contact name & number from nana's files, beings the UA link had been obliterated. i tried holding it together but right there in front of everyone i just fell apart. who does this kind of shit? who treats people like that? what f-ing right does this man think he has?

my mom & i left to meet AO for lunch & told her some of what went down. AO is another issue, she's there in town, but not speaking to nana, did not visit or call her once the entire time nana was in the hospital. although she did have a friend who visited nana daily so AO ended up with more info than i was able to get with daily calls to the hospital.

after lunch we went back to the hospital, my uncle was still there, in the corner, with his book, just sitting there. if you didn't know better you might wonder if he was even breathing. we told nana we were coming back, so he knew we were returning but he just sat there the entire time we were there. why he didn't/couldn't/wouldn't leave is simply further evidence of his unprecedented level of asshole.

the nurse came back in & asked "ok, what has the family decided" and that was the only way we found out anything....
UA told her he'd contacted social services to get assistance with the 24-hr that was needed. the dr also wants her to have a hospital bed at home & he was working w/ss for that. the nurse said ss might not be able to get a bed that day for nana, so she asked if we wanted nana to stay over-night in the hospital if that was the case & he said yes.

my mom & i were not part of the conversation at all.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

the not-interview

it was a week ago, time flies people!!!!
he told me to just come in for a chat, so what i got from that was they didn't really have a position open, but possibly in the future, so a meet & greet of sorts, right?

so i get there, the office wasn't right at the street, but back in a little maze of buildings. i found the address, but there was no sign on the door (as in the company name). i kinda blew that off, during the phone conversation it sounded like they had just moved....then i try the door & it's locked.

i surmise 1-no sign on door + 2-locked door = 3-side door

there's a doorbell thingie, so i ring that & someone comes to the door & i say "oh i'm sorry is this not the front door, i'm here to meet so&so?" & get "no, this is the front door".

so i look around & there's a copy machine & stuff piled everywhere, not a front reception-like office by any stretch of the imagination. so&so comes out & greets me, then walks me down the hall to a conference room & there's more boxes & shit piled in the hallway so i say something about them just getting moved in & he says "no, the company has been here about 6 years" [open mouth, insert BIG foot] so i say "oh, i must have misunderstood you over the phone".

in talking with him though, i really would like the work, but it's a small company so they don't have all the benefits i want. i would be able to learn tons of skills that could get me where i want to go long term though. when i left there it sounded very plausible & we just needed to negotiate pay [which is always great fun]. during the not-interview he told me the anticipated salary range, but said he would work on getting more.

over the past week, i've been in a lot of drama [in addition to all the posts i've made i didn't even write about baby C going in for his monthly treatment & having a hpv spot deep down in his lungs...he's ok though], but so&so & i have been in contact via email, although i admit i haven't been very timely. i gave him some references, he asked me for a more definitive salary, i told him my ideal # + 401k matching + dental (they don't offer the 2 latter) & told him that was just a starting point. in response he gave me a HUGE list of qualifications (that i don't have) which he said were required to merit the pay i suggested....

HELLO? you're a mom & pop shop (~70 employees total spread out over 5 or so offices)....1/3 of the "required qualifications" aren't relevent to the company! it looks like a list directly copied from; so i think we are done with each other. i sent him an email yesterday & he hasn't responded, i kinda hope he doesn't. i think i was just excited about the possibility of a job. i try to tell myself not to get so worked about it, it's more about finding the right career, not just a paycheck. i'm enjoying my free time, when i left for the interview B told me "don't go!" (he likes it too); we prepared ourselves for down-time & we know how to buckle-up when income dips, so were not desperate...yet.

UPDATE - i received an email from so&so & he agreed we probably were not a good i'm off the hook!!!! is it strange that i'm happy & relieved about that?

Monday, November 2, 2009

nana update

geez, would time stop moving so dang quickly!! i have too many things to write about, i just read my last post about nana it's so off & i need to write about halloween...oh & i almost forgot about the not-interview...

let's start with nana - all the days are jumbled together, i called the hospital & because of stupid HIPAA they still wouldn't tell me shit other than "she's fine" [which could mean she's next to death but we can't tell you over the phone & per chance get sued over the disclosure...yeah, i'm still a little raw about that]. however, i can say when i was talking to the nurse i said something about "how did things go? did you have to take out her stomach? does she have cancer?" evidently i was so far off base she assured me that wasn't going on at all.

f-ing family is AWESOME!!!

so, nana has been scoped, 2 or 3x but they weren't able to get the details they needed so thurs (i think) they cut her open to get a real look. i know they found the obstruction & cleaned her out, but don't know much beyond that. either today or tomorrow they are going to start her back on liquids.

my mom went to visit her on sun, nana was disoriented & didn't recognize her. nana also kept on asking her why were they in the kitchen? i told my mom it's probably b/c she was so dang hungry! they had to move nana to a room with more vigilent observation because she removed her GI herself....yeah, that's what happens when you have someone that isn't used to being in a hospital. nana told my mom her belly is sore, she doesn't know that she had an operation.

oh, one day last week i called the hospital & totally lied, told them i was my mom so i could get more info. i don't know who i talked with & i'm such an awful liar, i kept on messing up the 'me's and the 'my daughter's, he probably caught on, but realized i was desperate. the one tidbit of info i got was nana was admitted with "an upper GI bleed & a bowel obstruction".

i called nana last night, i'm not sure if she understood who i was, but she said she was feeling better & that they were treating her well. she sounded good & strong so i'm glad.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Hallowink 2009

[i'm back-dating this post so it's easier for me to find later when i forget about the timing of all the other drama....]
so not only does Z's school have a no-sweets rule, but no costumes either. yep, no dress-up for school on friday, isn't that crazy? that's half the fun.....they did have a 'carnival' though.....a really lame one.....

we trick-or-treated around some of the classrooms, then walked over to Z's class. found out teacher does not believe in nor celebrate halloween so she wasn't there. i know to each his own, but when you're a teacher, wouldn't you kinda go with the flow for the kids? the other day Z said "i think halloween is a day where kids just go around to get free candy" [i may be wrong, maybe it didn't come from her, but didn't sound like Z's words].

then we stood in line for a solid 1/2 hour to go to the haunted classroom; it was alright, but took about 30 seconds to walk very slowly thru. they had a trick-or-treat bag decorating table & a stand selling hotdogs & cookies & that was the 'carnival'. the best part of it, i got a good dry run on prepping Z's vampire face. the next morning we hadn't got all the black eyeshadow off from around his eyes & i have to say, the boy looks better with day-old-slept-in-make-up than i do in fresh [so not fair!]

B had floured Z's face to make it pale, but i didn't care for it so sat we went to walmart for Z's first make-up run to get some sort of powder or foundation. it was more difficult than i anticipated & even B was helping me look for something light when he asked "don't they have a goth section?" apparently not....we ended up getting white eyeshadow.

shortly after sundown we headed over to the neighbor's house & went trick-or-treating with them. Z still wants to go in & visit with everyone...he wants to sit & chat in exchange for candy i guess. the neighbor's 3yo had a better grasp of how things were supposed to go compared to Z...poor boy's been in the sticks the past few years!

we went up & down the street & then quite a few kids came out so i sat out the next stretch to give out candy while the boys went over to the next block. up & down 2 blocks Z came home with a bucket full of candy, he had a good night. thankfully one of the neighbor's gave out glow-in-the-dark bracelets b/c when we went to walmart they were out [for shame!] & although Z liked it, it was not the thrill it always gave him in the past, this year was about the candy.

Friday, October 30, 2009's fundamental

last year, 1st grade, was tough. we spent hours and hours doing homework that should have only taken a fraction of the time. i fought Z's school all year long for extra help so he could learn to read better. i knew what he was getting in the classroom wasn't enough & although i tried as hard as i could, i by no means am a teacher. B & I also debated on IEP (individualized education program) testing. it was bad & i still wonder about mrs. pippen passing him on to 2nd grade - did she really think he was ready for it, or did she count on that we were moving away & either hopefully he would get the help he needed or at least it wouldn't be her problem. [tangents....the female brain is dangerous]

this year, at a new school, the teacher immediately signed him up for a daily reading lab during regular class hours. i was really glad, that finally Z was going to get the help he needed & i didn't have to fight anyone to get it. then 2 weeks ago his teacher sent home a letter requesting Z attend another reading lab before school. Z didn't want to go & at first; i admit, my feelings were a little hurt. his reading had improved significantly in the short time he'd been going to the in-class lab, but knew it was for the best.

the other day teacher told me me Z was doing very well in math, using coins & making change, etc. & on thurs Z told me he has improved in his morning reading lab. he now goes to a different room where he reads then takes tests on the computer, he's finally got the reading thing down & now just needs to work on his comprehension.

he's gotten to the point where for the mostpart, he's able to do his homework by himself. he almost always asks how to spell a word before he tries, although 90% of the time he actually is able to spell it. what's really funny, the things he's learning now (the sounds, pronouncation guidelines & hints) are things i never learned in school. i have to ask him 'what's a short c & what's a long c?' wonder why i couldn't help him learn to read? i'm amazed i can read!!!!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009


nana's in surgery right now, or at least supposed to be. the communication with my family has been complete shit; nothing like having someone in the hospital & a bunch people not speaking to each other or willing to make a flipping phone call.

when i called my nana yesterday she told me she was supposed to have surgery, but it had been postponed & she wasn't sure of when it had been rescheduled. my nana is 89 & despite how strong willed & with-it she is, there's a lot out there she does not understand at all. like she doesn't drive; not as in she doesn't drive anymore as in she NEVER, EVER has driven one of them horseless carriages. to her the hospital is not a place you go when you're sick, it's a place people go to die. she's never stayed at a hospital before, all her kids [8 of them!!!] were born at home & she's never had any kind of illness to warrant more than a prescription. so i don't expect her to really be able to give me a run down of her chart, i mainly want to check & let her know i'm thinking of her.

so i called my uncle to get the lowdown & all they tell me is nothing has changed, there's no updates, the surgery was postponed. [um, hello, wtf, why didn't anyone call me to let me know it was scheduled in the first place mfers?]


i called the hospital directly because my uncle's an asshole & found out the surgery was scheduled for today at 2:30. the nurse told me to call back today after 4:30 for results, so i'm on pins & needles.

my aunt asshole's wife did call me this morning to let me know the surgery was scheduled for 2:30 [which i'm more than positive they knew when i called]. from what i understood, the stomach is going to be removed, esophagus will be connected to small intestine & they will biopsy the obstruction. it's still not known if it's cancer, if it is nana will have to be moved to another hospital.

Monday, October 26, 2009

20 year reunion weekend - pt I

friday night
after visiting nana & getting settled in at the hotel for the weekend, we headed over to the bar to meet up with the gang. we walked in & i didn't recognize anyone, thankfully B saw Estupid & his beautiful wife in the back corner. the football game had just ended & people started trickling in. it was crazy to see so many faces that i hadn't seen in 20 years, some people still looked completely the same! & some people acted the same [both in a good way & bad way!]

the highlights:
javier from 6th grade mrs. hogan's class [i would not have remembered her name, but he did]. i didn't recognize him, he called me out on it & i recognized the voice. i knew his wife too [anna], a friend's cousin.
randall a guy who would never give me the time of day other than to insult my mixed lineage actually came up to me & said hello.
the girls, lots of them, so good to see, in addition to the gang there was: shelly, tina, letty, deena, isabel, veronica

i realized i was glad i haven't gone back with B to any of his reunions. i know i left him hanging a bit while i went out to talk to people. this was a big role reversal for us, typically we're in a situation where either he knows everyone & i'm out in the cold or at least we both know a fair share of the guests. if i went to one of his reunions i wouldn't know a single soul in the room except for him & he would be running circles, finally his chance to see me as the social butterfly after 13 years! [talk about rare occasions, right up there with haley's comet]

Sunday, October 25, 2009

still waiting

the past 3 days of hospital visits kind of blur together. on fri, my uncle was there. it was a surprise to see him. so far, they had determined the cancer had not spread beyond nana's stomach, but further testing was needed to figure out how bad it was in the stomach.

when we went on sat they told us she had an obstruction in the stomach. nana was quite talkative, holding up her end of the conversation, happy although tired. hungry too because she hadn't had anything other than ice or water in 4 days. she joked & laughed some, told us about when someone was in the bed next to her they had the tv on & a beer commercial came on & about how badly she wanted a beer. [that's my nana!] earlier in the day she had to drink a solution to assist in the testing & she said it tasted bad she she couldn't keep it down. B told her next time to tell them to mix it w/beer & she said she would ask for more then!

today when we went to the hospital my other uncle was there with his wife. the dr was supposed to have come in the previous night or that morning to determine if surgery was needed on nana's stomach & if so, to what extent. we showed up around 12:30 & dr was mia, so no new info. my aunt & uncle know the dr & somehow were able to get him over to check out nana. the obstruction is on the bottom of her stomach & although she hasn't had solids in 4 days her tummy is bloated like a balloon. what little solution she had kept down is still in her stomach & only some liquid is completing the full route.

so she will have surgery, most likely sometime this week. we still don't know if they're going to do a partial removal or the entire stomach. i don't know why this is taking so many days, on grey's they get all this shit figured out & done in an hour....

Thursday, October 22, 2009

today, nana

today within a 1/2 hour timespan i got 3 phone calls.
i rarely get phone calls at all, to get 3 back to back was unusal.

the first call was from Z's school. i didn't talk about what happened before a few weeks ago. he wanted to play with a girl, she asked him to leave, he refused & punched her in the face. today he argued with another kid about who was first in line & when another girl backed up the other kid, Z spit in her face.

i don't know where or how my child thinks this behavior is acceptable. although i know i shouldn't worry about what people think, i wonder how many people are waiting for me to show up in jackie o sunglasses hiding a shiner? B actually explained to Z tonight about how he (B) doesn't speak to his own father, how he is such a mean person, how he hits people. this story is so old....

the 2nd call was a company i sent an unsolicted resume to. it's a company i worked with when i worked for old boss. i was torn when i sent the resume in the first place, do i want to work with a company that may have the same problems i had with old boss? i'm going in on tuesday "just to chat" not an official interview.

the 3rd actually came in during call 2, it was my mother. i called her back & she told me AO had called & told her nana was in the hospital & for me to call the hospital to see what i could find out. i called the hospital but they wouldn't tell me anything, but i did get to talk with my nana.

she sounded fine, she said her stomach was hurting, she hadn't eaten in 2 days, they were giving her a liquid through her veins & she may need surgery, but for now the pain was gone. i called my AO back, she said something about the possibility of stomach cancer & i got my uncle's number beings the hospital said my uncle was the point of contact. he confirmed the cancer, another biopsy had been done to determine what stage it's in, but the results weren't in yet.

i called my other uncle & he told me depending on the outcome of the biopsy, he wants to bring her to LA for better care. he also told me they (2 uncles) decided it's best to not tell nana she has cancer, they're afraid she'll give up. i think they may be right.

we are headed down tomorrow for my reunion. we planned on having lunch with nana on sat. i called her this morning & left a message that i'd call her back not knowing she was in the hospital. i was supposed to get the sewing machine she wanted me to have; now i feel as though it would be taking, stealing, scavanging like a vulture. so it doesn't feel right.

cousin C went to see her in the hospital, C's smart & kept it light never really getting into it; just asked "how are you doing, when are you going home, etc". girl is seriously wise beyond her years at times, hopefully i can keep it together tomorrow night.

when B got home i told him everything [that must have been nice to come home to]. later he asked what was the 2nd call, i reminded, then he said "i thought it was a bad thing..." somewhat confused. so i told him "well, yeah.......i might have to go back to work".

Monday, October 19, 2009

over the hills and thru the woods

to grandma's house we go...ok, we didn't go, only Z did. [i don't know what the deal is with the singing titles, roll with it]

it was so cute when i told Z we were going to a concert & his response was "what are we going to?" ugh, sorry kid 'we' is me & Poppa & you are staying at grammie's. he was fine with that. i told him 2 weeks in advance of our plans & he immediately wanted to go pack. i told him we had plenty of time & to go to bed...geez!

our evenings were busy with homework & such & before we knew it friday was upon us. i reminded him he had all of sat afternoon so he didn't have to get out of bed to pack. i had hoped for a great easy day; no homework, get our halloween decorations up, maybe go to the library, etc.

sat morning Z destroyed his room in the packing process so i told him he needed to clean it up. 3 hours later i go back & it was worse. i don't know how he manages it, but somehow he does. so i told him i was cooking, but he wasn't allowed to eat until his room was clean [which he could have done in 5 min if he wanted to]. i think that took an hour [or 2, he's so his father's son at times]. in the final clean up process he located the one card he had annilated his room for.

so we had a decent day after the rough morning. we did get some of the halloween decorations up, but then the wind blew 1/2 of them down & Z was asking me every 1/2 hour what time it was? was it time to go to grammie's? we didn't want to be late going to grammie's! & B was getting ready at noon for a 7:30pm concert & asking me about what to wear...

hello, my concert & the boys are driving me NUTS. i was excited but then i got to the point where i just wanted everyone out of my hair.

when i asked Z if he was all packed up he said he was, toys & books but not a stitch of clothing or a toothbrush. so everyone got their act together & we headed to grammie's. when we got there we had Z walk to the door alone & tell her we just dropped him off. he played it off quite well.

Z was happy to stay & B & I went off to the concert. shortly after 10pm i called my mom to check in & she told me they were still awake. i told her Z needed to get to sleep otherwise he'd be a bear on sun night. she said he'd been fine, not like the time when he was 3 & as soon as the sun went down he was out on the balcony hollering "momma, momma, momma" for me to come get him.

B & I headed home. Z's 7 years old & this was the first time he'd spent the night away from us. i did wake up in the middle of the night; weirded out when i realized Z's nightlight wasn't on, then rememeber he wasn't here with us.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

let it snow, let it snow, let it SNOW (PATROL)

i got the tickets a few weeks ago, ordered them online. we hadn't been to a concert in YEARS & thankfully, B was on board with going & even told me he was alright with paying extra to get good seats. [fyi, don't ever tell me that unless you mean it.]

the day of the concert was HOT in the city [seriously, upper 90s]. i was concerned about being around hot, stinky people even though it was at outdoor venue, i'd never been to it & really wasn't sure what to expect.

we dropped Z off at Grammie's house, went out for a quick greek dinner, then down to sdsu. we parked near some frat houses & were got more & more excited as we walked to the college. sdsu oat (open air theatre) is EXCELLENT let me tell you!!! small, very steep, like what i imagine the greeks saw plays in. we walked down, down, down, finally at floor level, then to the front!!!!

i actually yelled out "holy shit" when i realized we were in the front row...classy, i know.

plain white t's opened. they put on a great show. i only know "hey there delilah" & "1, 2, 3, 4", but still entertaining. we weren't front & center, just a little to the left. their show was only about 40 minutes, then it was time for the headliner.

here's Gary Lightbody [YAH!!!]

i never had tickets this good for a concert & was SO pleased! they put on a great show. i was a little worried, you know how some bands aren't very good live, but snow patrol did not disappoint, at all.

this is Paul Wilson, about 5 feet in front of us!!!!

they played a bunch of songs from "final straw", which is an old album, but i LOVE it & was singing all the words!

not only that, i've listened to it enough that B even recognized the songs - heehee!

here's Gary again. I'm pretty sure this is when he's singing "wow" my absolute favorite song from sp!

'say the first thing that comes into your head when you see me'

here's another one of Paul, i like the background. all pics were taken by B.

at the other end of the front row was a drunken pole dancing chick, she provided many laughs. Paul often would crack a smile & have to look somewhere else to keep his focus.

B tried to get a pic of me with the stage in the background, but it didn't work, lighting wasn't right, oh well.

i'm still listening to the cd over & over & now i can see them singing the songs in my head. especially Paul beings he was right in front of us, the crinkle between his eyebrows, eyes closed. oh & the 'terra diablo' tattoo down the inside of his left arm.

i can't wait to find another concert, but i'm i think now i'm going to be even picker than i used to be.
the band & venue were fantastic & the seats could only be beat if we were just a little to the right so we would have been front & center, but hey, i'm totally down with having a guitarist in front of no complaints.

great, great concert!
note to self - it was a total bitch to get this pics lined up like this, but the perfectionist in me is pleased!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

the pregnancy story - pt II

i don't exactly remember the conversation after the we got the test results, but i know we decided we weren't going to have a wedding after all. although we wanted it, we figured even a moderate wedding was going to cost about $10k & now we had a baby on the way & we'd need that $10k just for diapers.

then we had to figure out how to let the cat out of the bag. a couple members of my family knew we'd eloped, so the announcement wouldn't be such a big deal there, but B's family was a different story. B had kept our elopement a secret because he didn't want to take away from our real wedding & that now wasn't going to happen. we also had a friend that had recently gotten pregnant, announced it to the world & miscarried in her first trimester. so for the most part, we decided to keep my pregnancy news on the downlow.

i did call my mom right away though: "hey mom, remember how we had that appt to go try on wedding gowns? yeah, i had to cancel that because we're not going to have a wedding after all. i'm pregnant." [i'm all about finesse] mom was THRILLED. [i found out much later she had already been secretly stockpiling baby stuff!]

i called my dr's office to get that ball rolling & the nerve of them, they didn't have an appt for me that very day. not even the next day. i thought for sure they needed to check my little baby out post haste - wtf? i was appalled! what kind of ob/gyn was this guy? cells were splitting & multiplying & dna code was being replicated, he was supposed to make sure all this was happening properly!!!

i felt fine though, happy that i hadn't experienced ANY morning sickness at all. the only thing was that enormous shrink in my stomach size. i normally would only eat 2 large meals, now i could only eat a little at a time but still had to eat enough to keep up with my outrageous metabolism & have some for baby.

a few days later i went to see the dr, he did an ultrasound & confirmed i was carrying a little bean. he gave me a prescription for some pregnancy vitamins & iron tablets & sent me on my way. that was it. i don't know why but i expected more, a fricken miracle was happening, i was carrying a baby & to him it was old hat.

oh yeah, & the most important part - my due date was june 16th & we knew B was scheduled to go to japan leaving sometime in june or july. awesome, i was going to have a baby & he was going to leave me alone to figure it all out by myself. i know the circumstances were completely out of his control & he wasn't leaving by choice, but try & explain that to a pregnant woman. it doesn't compute. even when she's only a few weeks pregnant.

i was mad. so, so mad & there was nothing i could do about it.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

how to get me to spend $75 on a haircut when i'm unemployed

tell me i have pretty hair...

really, she did....& i don't think anyone has ever told me that before. well, not a hairstylist. boys maybe, but only because they're silly & don't really know anything at all about hair & if it's long = pretty; they care if it's dry or has split ends for miles.

i even told my stylist no one has evah told me i had pretty hair. although i have been told "you have a lot of hair", but it never sounded like a compliment. it sounded more like:
- all your hair is a pain in the ass to cut
- i could have cut 3 people's hair in the amount of time it takes to cut your hair
- you seriously expect me to blow this out for 20 minutes
- i'd better get a really good tip for working with this mess

but my stylist said she liked a challenge, there was no fun in styling someone's hair when they only had 3 strands [B says she must be hurting for clientele...]. this time she knew she needed 2 handfuls of shampoo to get my hair to lather up & to comb it out when the conditioner was on there. then, wow, she cut & fixed my hair & it came out SO pretty. i'm sure she slipped me something, shaved my head & glued a wig on while i was out.

so i decided i'm not going to wash my hair until after next weekend's reunion. i'm sure everyone will be talking about my pretty hair...nevermind that i'm unemployed [& will probably look homeless with that greasy hair!]

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

the pregnancy story - pt I

initially our plan was once i graduated college we would start our family, but B had changed squadrons at work & he was now on a regular schedule of 18 months here & 6 months in japan. so B would be here when i graduated, but would be gone the following summer & we decided it would be better to postpone the family until he returned. [hint, someone missed that memo]

so when i finished college, the new plan was i would find a real job & we were going to have a real wedding [all the previous stuff was practice]. B & I had picked a nice venue on Pendleton where you didn't even know you were on base [except for that whole guarded gate thing]; we were deciding on a date & selecting the menu.

then 9/11 happened, the world went a little crazy & so did i. i came home from work everyday & watched tv & cried my eyes out for days on end. i felt so sorry for all those people, the families that were destroyed; angry with the people who celebrated such an atrocity; and scared for B & our future. each base keeps a list of squadrons to deploy when chaos hits, B's squadron was at the top of the list when it happened.

i lost track of my cycle. i wasn't on the pill because of migraines, but we were using otc forms of b/c. i remember trying on wedding gowns & surprised at how well they fit me, nothing ever fits me. then i had an itchy face; not sure what that was about, just the skin on my lower cheeks & along the jawline itched like crazy. one night i was hungry after dinner so i ate an apple, after eating 1/2 of it i was unbelievably full & couldn't understand such a thing so i ate the other 1/2 & was completely miserable for hours.

something just wasn't right & i knew it!
but i didn't know wtf was i went to the dr

guess what the dr said?
allergies [yes, to pregnancy] so he gave me some claritin [at least that's what i think it was, little red pills]. oh & the more important result from the appt, i weighed 110lbs, which was completely abnormal for this body [at that time]. i explained to the lady their scale had to be off, 110 was something this body was capable of. i had strived for YEARS to gain weight & NEVER was able to get above 104lbs, so there was ABSOLUTELY no fricken way that scale could be right!!!! she told me their scales were calibrated [B likes to say by NASA] & there wasn't a mistake, that it was probably water weight due to my cycle.

so i took the little red pills, i don't remember if they helped with itchy face or not. i think it was the 1st weekend in october when we went to vegas for a friend's wedding. B & I were at the hotel & i told him about the weird side effect i got from the pills, i would gag when i brushed my teeth [stupid, stupid girl]. we went out for a legendary vegas buffet of all you can eat shrimp & prime rib where i almost cried because i could barely eat more than 1 plate of food. & it was shrimp. & prime rib. & my body just wouldn't let me eat like i wanted to. & like i said before i knew something wasn't kosher but i still didn't know what!!!!

another week or 2 past & i realized i hadn't received my monthly bill, but i'm not one to keep scrupulous records & figured it'll show up sooner or later. then i started dreaming about it & decided i might need to question it. so i called OCD, told her the deal & asked what to do [duh!]. her sage advice "go get at home test; don't get the cheapest one, don't get the most expensive one & get a 2 pack in case you need to test again in a couple of days." [seriously those words are etched into my brain]

so that's what i did on my way home that day & came home & tested immediately. i put the test stick on the floor in front of me & it was probably a millisecond before the plus line appeared. so i sat there & stared at it, hoping it would go away. it didn't. then i heard B come in the house, i didn't move, just sat there with a guilty look on my face. he walked in, looked at me, at the stick, took the paper that explained the results & went to the other bathroom.

when he came back to the bathroom i was still sitting there & he smiled at me & i told him "but i'm not ready" & started crying.

Monday, October 12, 2009

dooce's book

thanks to maya, i started reading a few years ago & a few months ago maya let me borrow HBA's book "it sucked & then i cried". i was really busy & had a valid excuse for not starting it back in july, but the past few months have just flown by & i realized i still had not started it, although i have about 5 other things i'm reading at the same time & picked up some more books at the library on sunday.....i can't help myself.

oh, yeah & the on & off cold i've been battling for the past 3's kicking my butt today. i had a lovely [fyi, that's dripping with sarcasm] cup of theraflu & was down for a great nap until a stupid fly kept on buzzing around my face. i'm tired & i don't make any sense...

so the book, i just finished reading chapter 5, leta was just born. i can SO relate to HBA's miserable pregnancy, her story brought back so many memories. i really do wish i knew of blogging at that time, the outlet would have been although i hinted to it before, i decided to get it all down on paper on blog & over the next few days i'm going to write my pregnancy story.

Friday, October 9, 2009

at least he's didn't pull a joey

when we got home from our errands, Z was on the floor in his bathroom in a tangled mess. i asked him what he was doing & he said he was taking off his chonies because in the morning he'd forgotten he had on a pair & put on another pair, so we had worn 2 pair all day long.

i don't know how exactly you forget that you're wearing a chonies & put on another pair without noticing the 1st pair, but he did. he was wearing sweats, so i was just glad he didn't go commando, that would have been much worse...

a nobel headache know i'm not one to get all's just not my bag...but i really, really can't believe obama has been awarded a nobel peace prize....

for WHAT?
great walk & talk, but how about we wait for some quantifiable results?

it's not that i dislike him, i'm just a little skeptical & the world treats him like he's the 2nd coming of christ & it freaks me out.

bandwagons, i don't jump on them....i watch them with a discerning eye.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

he will be king

i typed that & got a call from Z's school, that was 2 days ago & i haven't had the heart to come back to pick this back up. for a few minutes, let's pretend that call didn't happen & all is good...

Z was getting ready for school & i went down the list - had your breakfast? did you brush your hair? teeth? etc, then ask do you want me to fix your hair? [lately he's liked wearing spiky hair, not everyday though.]

Z - no, today i have to be handsome

me - um, what?

Z - momma, [exasperated] i have to be handsome today because i meeting with the club at school.

me - what club is this?

Z - it's a group of girls & i'm the only boy

me - ok [well, they're only 7, but it's all girls & one boy, more importantly my boy, i don't know if i should be worried or if i should be WORRIED]

Z - today i'm going to be the king so i have to be handsome & i can't wear spiky hair

me - very well then [get back to me before they want you to be the doctor...there's a discussion we need to have beforehand.]

cookies for breakfast

every once in awhile this adult gig has its having fresh out of the oven chocolate chip cookies for breakfast...yum...
last month i made a spur of the moment chocolate cake (with chocolate chips added, because i needed more chocolate). yeah, it's cyclical. totally.

ahem, reason for the post though...i had gone on a baking hiatus for several years & last holiday season when i started back up, i was a little out of practice & had forgotten so many of my little tricks. i think i got them all down & decided i better document them before they are lost to old age. [i'm going to put some basic stuff in here too]

- although recipes always tell you to start with soft butter, bring your eggs out early too. my mom always told me the eggs mixed in better at room temp.

- for your fats [i know that sounds gross, but i actually have a recipe that states it that way (then breaks down to oil or lard) but the term is all encompassing, so deal]. i've tried all butter (low melting point & you end up with great flavored pancake-like cookies) & all crisco (even with "butter-flavored" it just doesn't measure up but cookies have better shape); in the end decided the best route 1/2 butter 1/2 crisco...always. no matter what the recipe says.

- mix sugars (i don't pat down brown sugar, i like to taste the flavor of the dough & not have a complete sugar overload) & fats in a large bowl. scramble the egg & vanilla (or other flavoring) in your measuring cup before adding to your sugar/fat mixture (blends easier & isn't so gross to look at).

- when measuring out the flour, take back a tbsp or 2 & replace with cornstarch (unless the recipe already calls for some). the cornstarch gives great lift to cookies, but don't add more than a tbsp or 2 otherwise your cookies will be picture perfect but may break a tooth.

-before you add the last of the flour mixture to the sugar/fat/egg mixture keep a little tiny bit in the bowl, add your semi-sweet (only!) chocolate chips & nuts to give them a light dusting; this will help them stick to the batter. (i don't ever measure out my chips, tons otherwise why bother? peanut butter cookies with chips? yup. oatmeal with chips? of course) also keep the bag of chips near, after each round i evaluate the remaining batter & add more as necessary.

- cookie sheets, it really does pay off to have 2 nice pans. don't bother with different size package deals, they're just a pain to store anyways. after each batch, let them rest for a minute on the pan to cool & keep their shape. after they're removed from the pan wipe it down with a napkin or paper towel to remove crumbs (if left they will burn & stick to your next batch).

happy baking!

Monday, October 5, 2009

you're so vain, you probably think this blog is about you

but it isn't, it's mine & it's about me...
(fyi, that's a carly simon rip off if it's not clicking for you)

it's my 20 year reunion in a few years weeks. i know that can't be right, somebody screwed up with the math, i demand a recount! so although i'm looking forward to it, i realized something the other day, part of the reason why i haven't attended any of the previous reunions came to light.

see, Z & I were off to the library again, in the vw. oh yeah, the vw is fixed-ed. i'm not going to say 'fixed' because it isn't truly, it's a shade of fixed, ergo fixed-ed. so far all the alarms & lights have stopped after B put it together, the window works & so do the locks. what doesn't work? i can't open the door from the inside. i wasn't sure if i should drive the car, but then i remembered the parking fiasco & decided worrying about how i would get out of the car if i got in an accident was better than facing the parking lot in the truck.

before we headed out is when the epiphany happened, not only has 20 years past, i'm 38 [wth? how did that happen? more importantly when did that happen?] & i still don't have a clue on how to be a girl. i can't fix my hair up nice & don't know how to put on make-up.

for the first time in my life a few weeks ago i got an expensive haircut. she didn't really do much with my hair, but she did tell me that because of the various textures of my hair when i get a bad haircut, it's absolutely fricken atrocious with my hair. [oh wait a minute, maybe i did know that]. so i'll go back in a few weeks, one more round, hoping to come out with model hair...wish me luck. and as for my face, ugh, i'm actually thinking of going to a dept store, sitting in one of those chairs at a makeup counter & having them do me up. that should be a new level of hell interesting. i typically hate those makeup girls, they reek with disdain at those of us who aren't caked in layers of camouflage.

then there's the clothes. i know, clothes usually aren't a problem for me, but i'm not sure how dressy to go. i don't want to wear staple black pants & a top, i want to look nice but not overdressed & hoity-toity [i'm not sure you can do that while unemployed...& not independently weathly]. i made the mistake of asking B what the women were wearing to his reunion in July...stupid, stupid, i know....they were wearing jeans & sweatshirts [!!!!! with john deere tractors on them ].

Thursday, October 1, 2009

about that trip to the library...

remember the other day i vaguely mentioned about going to the library? actually i didn't really say much about the library & just touched on the sad attempt at parking the truck in an empty lot & failing....

anyhoo, so yes, the other day, at the library, in the truck, on track?

beings we're new to town, Z needed a new library card. he kept the card & without even thinking about it, i slipped the keyring one on my keys. [did you get that? my keys] when we got home, Z grabbed his books & i told him to make sure he didn't leave his library card in the truck because we know Poppa isn't ever going to be the one to take him to the library. [it's just a fact]

today B notices the library keyring card on his keyring & says "what is this doing on there? do you know what people are going to think of me? i might be associated with the wrong crowd, people may think i'm educated".

i laughed & couldn't believe how i absentmindedly put it on his keyring then told him "more than that, they make even think you're literate!!!"

nothing but love for ya babe!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

military bs

so, we're almost done with B's military gig. a little over a week ago he hit his 20 year marker & officially Oct 1 he is no longer an enlisted marine - SWEET! we are free, free, free!

today we went to base to change our paperwork over to "retired people's insurance". initially B had asked me to go drop it off, but we knew the chances of something going wrong woud be incredible if i went alone. he was hedging towards not going because he has facial hair...yeah, that's quite a big deal if you're still active duty, but finally he decided he'd better come along.

the lady putting in the change was having problems with her computer & she asked someone for some help, the program wouldn't accept our info. she kept on trying but it just wouldn't go & then finally she figured it out - the program was auto-populating B's ex-wife's information....& it wouldn't let her delete it.

doesn't that kinda tell you HOW f-ed up the government is? hmmmm?
yeah, he's been divorced over 15 years. i realize she's in his file history, but why auto-populate info that old?
so i told the lady, let me have a whack at your program, i'm sure i can get her out.

as we left i told B it WAS a good thing he came along because can you imagine the phone call i would have made asking him wtf she was showing up on the insurance request? hahahahah!

Monday, September 28, 2009

vw disco & trapped like a rat

we got the vw when i was 12 months pregnant. ok, i was only in my 8th month, but i was huge & everywhere i went people would ask me if i was ok because they knew i was about to explode. while i can't say i love the car, it's been reliable & i'm quite pleased it made it through 4 years in the desert, something we weren't sure would happen.

just a few months before we moved the vw decided to occasionally no longer recognize when the driver's side door was closed. the vw is too stupid smart for it's own good & when it thinks the door is ajar there's a red light on the dash, an audible alarm, a delayed ringing alarm & flashing lights. oh & there's an actual screen where the car talks & it says "the door is open dumbass", only i'm not the dumbass the car is, the door is closed, but it won't listen to me...

to drown out the myriad of alarms i just turn the music up louder. as for the lights, well for a minute i considered changing out each of the interior bulbs to a different color so i could have a cool flashing light show in the car, but decided against it & shut them off completely.

this weekend B decided he would take apart the door to fix the switch. um, that was harder than anticipated, there's the exterior panel, an interior panel, he removed the glass, then he took off the window upper/downer (that didn't need to come off) & finally he got to the door opener/closer switchy (are you keeping up? i'm using highly technical terms here). the circuit board inside the door opener/closer switchy is what we were after but it was fine, so we're f'ed hosed sol at a loss as to what to do next.

so the vw is in pieces in the garage & that means if i'm going to drive i have to take the truck. Z & I did go to the library yesterday, parking was a disaster in an empty parking lot so even though we needed to make a costco trip i was so not going to go & attempt to park that truck. at costco. on sunday. in the afternoon. in a ridiculously small parking lot to start out with. when i got home & told B why i didn't go his solution was "you could have gone to the other costco". see, i kid you not!

this morning i took Z to school in the truck & ran my errands. i was at costco before it even opened. i still parked fairly far away from the front door, in a good spot no one around me anywhere & i could pull right through when i left. (seriously, lots of planning needed!) so i go get the essentials (milk, bread, coffee cheesecake. what? who put that there?) then left. the parking lot had filled up in just a few minutes. yikes! cars on either side of me! & behind me! ah, still open in front so i could pull through!

i throw everything in the backseat, climb in, start the truck, put it in D & guess what? yup, a suburban comes screeching in right in front of me. f, thanks lady i change over to R & back & forth & back & forth & OMG how many times am i going to have to do this? i only have a few inches of space! so finally i think i'm at my last go round & i can pull forward & not hit the car next to me, inch by inch forward, slow, slow, slow & the bitch suburban lady says "you got it". i should have just pinned her!