Monday, December 31, 2007

Happy New Year!

Now I'm gonna take my sick baby girl and go to bed! Some party huh?! I will say though that she gives the best snuggle I ever get so I'm not complaining!
If you are out tonight get home safe!

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Thanks to The Wobbly Librarian I now know this...

***You Are 36% Feminine, 64% Masculine***
You are in touch with your masculine side.You are not overly sensitive and not easily moved.Occasionally, though, something will get through and touch your heart!
Are You Masculine or Feminine?http://www.blogthings.com/areyoumasculineorfemininequiz/

Ok well truth be told I think I already knew it... but if I'm only 36% feminine I think that entire 36% has anatomically correct names... I must be ALL man on the inside! Oh, dear... this is disturbing!!!

What do I do with this???

The kids are supposed to be sleeping, or at least falling asleep. Sophia asked if she could sleep in the living room tonight and, because I know she has had a rough couple of days, I said sure. So anyway, she's supposed to be going to sleep. Well, she has this giant Disney Princess Aurora doll (sleeping beauty) that is bigger than she is. It's a pillow doll and she has been sleeping with it lately. So now she's on the couch next to me, holding Princess Aurora's hands and singing "if you're happy and you know it clap your hands!" Now I'm in a quandary. It's bedtime, quiet time, she should be going to sleep...but how do you tell your kids to stop being so joyful and go to sleep? So I'm not going to. I'm gonna let her break the rules tonight! Oh and I got a 15 second video on my cell phone of her singing "You are my Sunshine" a few minutes ago. If I were a more capable blogger I'd figure out how to post that video!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

I think Christmas is over...and I'm glad!

It's not that I don't love Christmas, I do! In fact, Christmas is my favorite holiday. I just feel like I have eaten nothing but high calorie high fat junk for the last few weeks. All I can think about is getting on the treadmill and running it all off. I haven't gained any weight, thanks in part to that ulcer, but I still feel disgusting. My running project has been derailed by all of the craziness and I'm sure that's a contributing factor to my feeling so sluggish!

Another thing that has gotten to me is a renewed awareness of just how wasteful it seems to buy STUFF that no one really needs. I didn't spend much this year - I'm always pretty frugal but as a single mom, this year was even more so. In my mind that is a blessing. Still, I find myself perplexed about why I spend so much on things that no one will remember I gave them in a few short weeks. By far the most amazing gifts I received this year had no real monetary cost associated with them. It's not that I don't enjoy giving things or getting them for that matter it just seems there must be a simpler way to celebrate.

Someone gave my brother and sister-in-law a goat or something...no not for them to keep... but for a village somewhere that could actually benefit from it. That seems perfect to me. Every year I struggle with what to give my dad or my brother who want for nothing. I'll admit that buying for girls is easier and frankly a lot more fun! Still I think next year I'm going to buy goats, or a well for some village or something and call it a day. Sure my dad will enjoy playing horseshoes on our new property but would he have missed them if the money had been spent instead on something life changing for someone who has actual NEEDS?! I'm not Scrooge... I don't advocate dashing the hopes of joyful children. Goodness knows I'd pay for that over a lifetime if I were - ahhh the therapy bills - but can't we make it a little more simple?

It's probably good I have a whole year to contemplate how I will "do" Christmas next year. I hope to find a way to focus more on Him and less on the stuff that in the end is completely worthless compared to the real reason we celebrate.

Here's hoping I didn't just come off sounding like a whole lot of Bah-humbug!!! As usual my filter is, well, nonexistent!

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

I can't remember the last time...

I spent an entire day in pj's! I watched four movies, three with the kids. Now to be fair the first two were a little worn out for me - HSM2 and Jungle Book. I've seen both too many times to count. The third was some made for TV movie that my parents bought on the cheap... but it was decent. Then I put the kids to bed and watched Last Holiday with my parents.
I got to snuggle in and take a nap with Sophia. Ella snuggled me through an entire movie, oh and she did my makeup. I would post photos but frankly I'm entirely too vain! Isaiah's favorite gift was the Bible I bought him. It is a pretty cool Bible with a camouflage metal cover. Abby gave me my fair share of snuggles today too. At some point I realized that she must have had too much candy and/or too little sleep because she was running in circles. I figured she was either buzzing from sugar overload or trying very, very hard not to fall asleep! It was a good day. I'm ready for bed...and I don't even have to change!

This is what Christmas morning looks like with four kids...


Between the vast quantities of miscellaneous stuff the kids brought home from their dad's last night and the half dozen small gifts each from me... oh and the stockings full of junk I'd never let them eat on a normal day... this is what my living room looked like post chaos this morning! I had cleaned probably half of the mess up BEFORE I took this picture so you can only imagine what it would looked like before I picked up! I'm just glad all their stuff from Christmas at my grandparents the other night is still in the car!
What am I going to do with all of this STUFF??? We haven't even done our "big" Christmas. That one will happen Thursday, with gifts from my parents and Mark & Adrianne. I'm sure at some point we'll get a collection of stuff from their other grandparents as well. It all seems so ridiculous to me!
A part of me thinks I should get them each ONE gift every year and try to get their dad to stick to that rule too (yeah right!!!). The thing is that we don't need all this stuff! I get that it's fun for them and maybe I'm just being too practical - it has been known to happen - but I am almost irritated and the wastefulness of the whole thing.
I can't wait till my kids are all old enough to go serve somewhere on Christmas so they can see that, even if we don't have much, we have so much more than we really need!

Monday, December 24, 2007

Best gift ever!

Yesterday I had Christmas with my dad's family. My grandma, who has Alzheimer's, has been living in a home for the last year and a half or so. We were able to have a caretaker bring her home for Christmas. It is so hard for me to see her like this. She is a brilliant woman. She went to college when most women didn't. She always had a quick wit and I admired her strength. So to see her unable to communicate effectively is painful. She tries to talk but very little makes sense. She doesn't know who I am. I held her hand, and it's still her hand, but it feels like there is a stranger in her body. So I cried...most of the day. I miss my grandma, even though physically she's still here.


Lately my grandpa has been choosing things that my grandma treasured to give us girls as gifts. When I was a kid, and would spend the night at my grandparents house, my grandma would make me a bed out of quilts. So this year my grandpa gave me one of those quilts. It didn't cost him money to give that to me but it is more valuable than anything he could have purchased. The quilt he chose for me is one that my Great Great Grandmother made. He gave me the quilt along with a photo of my dad on her lap...and I cried, again.


Saturday, December 22, 2007

I think I might finally be feeling like Christmas!!!

The gifts have all been purchased, and wrapped, with the exception of two I picked up yesterday and one more I left in my sister in law's car so my dad wouldn't see it. My house is as decorated as it usually gets - or close enough. I have to go get the ingredients today for my sweet potatoes that I'm bringing to my grandparents house tomorrow. It occurred to me yesterday that "they" always talk about how good sweet potatoes are for you. I'm pretty sure they never looked at mine! A whole stick of butter and, so much brown sugar that I don't bother to measure it, kind of kills the health factor I'm sure! I'm fairly certain the apple I add doesn't do anything to redeem the dish! Oh, and don't forget the marshmallows because in case the brown sugar wasn't quite enough we need to add a years worth of white sugar to the mix! I love that my brother, who hated sweet potatoes our whole life, loves my sweet potatoes. What I think I love even more is the fact that he is Mr. Super health conscious and I know that he probably consumes a years worth of sugar from them alone. It's my own secret conspiracy...that's not a secret anymore huh?!?!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Correction...

No Java Bliss tonight... sorry all! Read Adam's comment on the last blog for the why. Shoot, and here I was all excited!!!

Tonight...at Java Bliss

Quick Before Sinking at 7 p.m.! Be there or be... well... not as cool as me! We've covered this already but QBS is amazing and the company at their gigs is the best. So if you want to listen to great music and chill with cool people you should really be at Java Bliss tonight! Oh, and if you read my blog and we haven't met yet, this would be a great place to come step out of the shadows!!!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

I almost lost my mind

I had volunteered to babysit on Tuesday night. It wasn't your run of the mill babysitting gig though. First of all I'm not a high schooler, second I come with four kids of my own and third...I had volunteered to babysit four more.

So I figured easy deal right?!?! Ok actually I figured it would either be super easy because all the kids would keep themselves occupied or it would be complete pandemonium because there were eight exhausted children in one house. Oh and by the way the ages of the kids were as follows: two 2 year olds, two 4 year olds, one 6 year old, an eight year old, one nine year old and a ten year old.

I brought my laptop knowing my friends have wireless access at their house so I figured in the event the evening stayed calm I'd be able to putz around online and maybe blog or something. Well the kids were awesome. I heard almost nothing from them the whole night. Fortunately it wasn't that "you know they're up to no good" kind of quiet! It was just a well behaved children all having fun kind of quiet. Here's where I almost lost my mind... I'm sitting there, with no fires to put out and (I feel like I need horror movie music here.... DUN, DUN, DUN!!!!) the internet wasn't working!!! AHHHHHHHGGGGG. It was horrible! Now that would have been manageable if I had been able to find a grown up to talk to or if I had say, I don't know, brought a book to read or something...

I did finally find a friend to text with for a while but otherwise I think I might have gone completely crazy!

Monday, December 17, 2007

Pictures don't do it justice!!!

Only because the picture taker doesn't know how to use her camera to take a great picture of a tree full of lights... I got the camera a year ago and about the only things I know how to do with it are point, zoom in & out, and shoot. I should really read the instructions one of these days. Anyway, I'm sitting here alone, and awake, at 1:35 in the morning admiring my beautiful tree. So of course I thought you all would want to admire it as well. Unfortunately you only get to admire some really poorly taken pics of the beautiful tree. You will undoubtedly be wondering why I'm so impressed...but here you go anyway!



Saturday, December 15, 2007

Today

I cleaned my house practically all day long. I cleaned out the pantry, swept the kitchen, and then I started cleaning out the fridge. Well I accidentally knocked a FULL bottle of syrup out of the fridge. My immediate response was to yelp because it had landed on my toe, and it hurt... but then I realized the entire bottle of syrup was leaking out onto my floor. Yep the bottom fell out of the syrup. It wasn't just a bottle of syrup either it was from COSTCO!!! Oh my gosh it sucked! Anyway so while I was cleaning that up I got an up close and personal look at the vent thingy at the bottom of my fridge and I was disgusted. But wait there's more! I then turned around and noticed how gross my stove looked from that angle. It's amazing how much dust, fingerprints spills and who knows what else falls and drips on the oven! It had to be dealt with. So I gave a quick once over to a few of those things, plus the range hood and a few cabinets that had milk or something spilt on them at least one time too many. UGH. Then I vacuumed the living room and went out and cleaned the rug that I had pulled out of my house when Sophia threw up. I finally got the rug put back in my living room. While performing all of those oh so fun tasks I was snapping at the kids to get their rooms clean. They did an ok job of it. I got my room picked up too - which is good because I can't deal with messes where I sleep! I still have clean laundry to fold AND dirty laundry to do. Oh, and I didn't dust... but at this point I'm just happy to know that if anyone drops by my house unexpectedly - I wouldn't die of embarrassment. Not that anyone drops by unannounced anymore anyway!
After all of my efforts to get my house in order I went to church. Then I went to a party at the Risingers. I had a blast! Someone told me they loved my laugh... not a compliment I've ever received before but it was was cool! I'm so glad I went, I only wish I could have stayed longer.

Friday, December 14, 2007

I love this stuff..

and it will probably sound crazy to you but, as usual, I'm willing to risk it. I'm sitting on the couch in some seriously mismatched pj's not really feeling like being awake. The guys came to pour a slab in my backyard and started knocking on my door before 6 am! Seeing as I went to bed about 2 am that isn't nearly enough sleep! (by the way that isn't part of what I love!!!) Abby is sitting behind me with a comb and a spray bottle full of water combing my hair. I'm sure I look beautiful... in the "a face (or in this case a hairdo) only a mother could love" kind of way. Then there's Sophia who is sitting on the toilet singing at the top of her lungs as usual. In addition, Isaiah has decided that he really needs to write his great grandpa a thank you note for the money he got for his birthday... over a month ago. Now he's right, he really should write a thank you note. Well he should have written the note about three weeks ago so when we finally give grandpa the note at Christmas it will be a lovely source of embarrassment for me, the slacker mom, but you can't exactly tell a kid NOT to write a thank you note! I need to get laundry done like STAT because the kids have a performance tonight and their "uniforms" are not clean. My living room is a mess - well and to be honest so is the rest of my house - but my Christmas tree is beautiful enough to distract me from the mess! Isn't it fabulous?!?!?

Thursday, December 13, 2007

I realized somthing

I have had some really cool conversations with people lately. On more than one occasion I have been told how much happier I look and seem post divorce. How even though I have gone through a lot and sometimes still struggle with things I seem content. I sometimes think that is because I choose to be content. Other times I am reminded of how hard my life was before and it seems I couldn't help but be happier now. All in all I am doing well. There are still days when I'm overwhelmed with being a single mom of four. But I wouldn't trade it either. The other day though I was talking with friends about what I think I still need to heal from. It was odd because I think these questions always come up exactly when I'm ready to answer them. Over the last several weeks I have noticed that it deeply effects me to see a dad who really engages his kids. Who obviously knows HOW to love them well. That is such a hard thing for me to watch. I am so happy for those children who have fathers like that but it is a painful reminder of the fact that mine do not... and it really sucks!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Sometime it blows my mind...

How four little people could make such an enormous mess! I walked into the kitchen about an hour ago and found it littered with random messes. Juice spills, cheese wrappers, cereal, crackers, a half eaten apple and the containers from the yogurt drinks the kids had as a snack. What the heck is that about. In the course of one hour my kitchen can go from looking relatively normal (though obviously in need of a good mopping) to complete chaos. I lost my cool. I yelled at my kids...and then they cleaned it up...well mostly. At least now when I mop I'll be able to see the floor I'm aiming for!
But wait, it gets better...at some point in them cleaning up their messes I hear an argument brewing. Abby is mad because Isaiah got her "daddy shirt" dirty. (the three older kids each sleep with a shirt that belongs to their dad like it is a blankie) So I start listening to the drama and hear Abby say "he put pee on it" and I'm of course thinking what the hell?!?!? So I call him in and ask him how exactly he managed to pee on his sister's daddy shirt. He's nine so aim shouldn't still be a problem. Well, he starts in on this story about how Ella made him put pee in this plastic thing that is made to hold his games...and how he then spilled it on Abby's daddy shirt. Yep, that's the story I heard. Now I still can't figure out why he would have actually done what Ella supposedly told him to do or if maybe he was really just trying to shift the blame but either way it was disgusting. I had to tell my kids that they should never play with their pee, or their siblings pee. That it was not appropriate behavior. This may very well be the strangest conversation I will ever have with my kids. What is my life coming to???

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Exposing my Immaturity

Last night after the last of my four kids had their turn at the vomit-go-round I went to work producing a little vomit of my own. No not the churned from my stomach kind...it was actually churned from ingredients from my cupboard. Why, you might wonder, would a grown woman be in the kitchen purposely attempting to make something you would expect 6th grade boys to want to make? Well, let me tell you...I needed to get a little payback. You see Adam over at http://www.theepicbeat.com/ likes to act like a 3rd grade boy and see how close he can make me come to vomiting at every opportunity. Recently he wrote this in response to my "Abby is a Rockstar" blog:

"I'm surprised you even typed the word vomit. That's a big step for you.I know how the word vomit bugs you...also words like feces, phlegm, urine, puss, snot, boogers, scabs, oh yeah, scabs is a good one, and not the fully healed crusty kind, but that chewy soft, oozy kind...with a little gangrene...I could go on."

I decided I was tired of it so I thought I'd deliver what he seemed to want. So about 5 minutes before the Christmas show during first service I left a Ziploc bag of some disturbingly realistic imitation puke on Adams music stand. The best part is I had "accidentally" involved my very straight laced brother in my little prank by showing him my handiwork before hand. So when Adam saw the gift on his music stand my brother said "it looks like vomit." Presumably a short moment after that Adam turned around to see me looking quite guilty from my seat in the third row. Guilty perhaps...sorry, not yet!

Sadly he was apparently proud of his gift and was showing it off to the people in the tech booth after the show. So now I think I've begun a prank war...and I may have played right into the hands of the 3rd grade boy mentality I was trying to get payback on! Now I'm a little worried.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Abby is a rock star! (Don't read if you are easily grossed out!!!)

Well at least in the stomach flu department! She got sick yesterday while she was with my parents. Then in the night last night she comes in and announces that she has thrown up in the bucket and in the toilet...then she says "I cleaned my mess up and I'm ok now" Can I just say I love this kid! How many four year olds will throw up on their own and then clean themselves up and go back to bed all without tears or a need for help. I need more sympathy than that when I get sick and I'm 31 years old. The best thing is that when I got up to check and be sure all was really as she said...it was! There was no mess for me to clean up - which is great because I've never been the one to handle vomit duty! I'm so glad that at least one of my kids can handle it this well. Maybe next time the big kids get sick I'll send Abby to help them out. From the way she handled her own issues I'm pretty sure she could deal with theirs better than I can!
Oh and Sue...go wash your hands now!

Monday, December 3, 2007

Amazing...and I handled it well!

The kids were with their dad and were supposed to come home at noon today. He called at about 10:45 a.m. and asked if he could bring them back early. I said I would be home in an hour so he couldn't bring them until then. I asked why and he said he needed to talk to me. I asked what was up and he wouldn't say. He just said that the kids were fine.

When he came with the kids they went inside to eat and I asked what was up. He kicked the dirt around with his foot and finally said..."I've been thinking a lot, and I keep thinking and dreaming about being back here with you and the kids...How I really want to come back."

I feel like I need some way of expressing what it sounded like to me when I heard him say that but frankly there aren't words.... I will however tell you what I said in response.

I said "I'm so sorry that you are only now seeing what you gave up. So many people warned you that you would regret your choice but you refused to do the right thing. You made your decision, there is no going back. You had all kinds of freedom while you were in the marriage that I didn't even know you had, all the while I was bound to you. You saw every effort I made to take care of you or support you as something else to criticize and never once appreciated it. I spent 11 years loving you completely and you never loved me. I will not do that for you again. The irony is that for all the freedom you took when you should have been mine, you left me for what you thought was freedom. Now you find yourself bound to someone else. When you left it seems you thought I would still be bound to you. Instead, I got the very freedom that you thought you were getting. I love the life I have now. I would never go back to you or that old way of life. I will never go back to being called names, and hated for the very things that I did to make you happy. I am happier now, even alone, than I was while trying so desperately to please you and never, ever succeeding. I hope you find a way to get your life right. I want that for you but even more, I want it for the kids. They deserve a dad who is whole. You need to be well for them."

I said all of that and more. I wasn't emotional. It wasn't even hard to say. I felt pity for him. What a sad and miserable person he is! I feel sorry for him but not in such a way that I feel any responsibility to make it better. I didn't feel any joy in the fact that he was hurting either. What I did feel was a confidence about who I am, what I want, and in my ability to express myself well. I think this was the most important conversation I will ever have about my divorce. I feel different now. Like this time I was the one with the choice, and I made it with certainty.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

My brain is buzzing

So I'm pretty sure nothing I write will flow well or make much sense...but I need to write so I'm doing it anyway. Oh, and no I haven't been drinking!!!
I got word that I passed my interview with the Riverside Police department on Monday. Then on Saturday I got a letter stating that I was no longer being considered for the position. Essentially it seems as if my lack of work experience put me behind the pack. The unfortunate bit is that there is nothing I can do to remedy that problem quickly. On the other hand I am totally trusting that God knows what is best for me and that must not have been it...or at least not now.
Another thing I wanted to write about is that I just read back over some of my posts and I realized I talk a lot about drinking. As I read those posts I realized I may sound like some kind of lush...when in reality I rarely drink at all. When I do I don't drink excessively. I think I've used it as sort of a way to be funny and it turns out I don't like the way it looks in print. I just thought I'd mention it because sometimes my candor can be a good thing but in this case my lack of filter has made me uncomfortable...
Also running through my brain is the activities of my day. I have been all over So. Cal. today. I visited a friend in Glendora, then came to my aunts house near the beach. We went out to lunch. Then we went shopping and got some Christmas stuff taken care of. It was fun! Now I'm tired.
So, was it as bad as I thought it would be?