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|Wednesday, December 4th, 2013|
|Sliding Across The Country A Couple Of Times, Or So
So, in this past month, just over one month since my birthday, we have traveled by car across the United States, going west, then east. We are back at Villa Villekula now. Oh, I also might mention that Thirteen and I flew to N.C. from SoCal last weekend, for some stuff, including a funeral. And no, we are not made of money. In fact, I'm hoping to get more proposal work and pay off some of this travel. Most has been financed by cash, btw, which I am trying to use more and more often these days.
I am tired. Exhausted. I slept maybe two hours or so last night and have been up all day today. Driving across the country with three children, three puppies, a mama dog, can be exhausted for this tired mama.
I really need to write, though. I am so very thankful for two angelic things that happened, in addition to God's protection for us, for which I am very thankful, the entire trip. One is that in the midst of this particular bitch's first meltdown during this trip, before we ever left California (regarding the other bitch's poop, or that of her pups, landing on a computer case in the HO, resulting in a more thorough coverage with plastic and puppy pads for the HO), a kind angel gave us a cat carrier. This particular angel's caring nature-=-as she saw that I was yelling and cleaning up dog poop and yet trying so hard not to lose it in the Mojave deser--calmed me immensely; her dog had also had three puppies that she was hauling to Missouri. She gave me, taking no money for it, a cat carrier, which became a real Godsend during the trip.
The next morning, we were trying to figure out where to eat in Flagstaff. Just a few days previously, we had gone to a McDonald's in Flagstaff while I edited an SBIR proposal. We were around the same McDonald's (where we had stayed for over three hours while I worked) and I wanted to go to McDonald's, not for the food per se
, but for the quickness. Thirteen wanted to eat at some country buffet place. I didn't feel much like it, but we went anyway. There, a big extended family sat beside us and I was freaking out; they were in our space as well as theirs. I went to the bathroom. When I returned, another smaller family sat beside us. Angel Woman had two sons, or so it seemed. There was another woman with her and eventually, her husband came and sat down. At one point, our eyes met briefly and then, we both went on about our business. As I was putting a tip on the table and getting ready to go, she told me that she wanted to pay for our breakfast. And she did. It was a bit disconcerting at first, simply because of the surprise of this action from a total stranger. She accompanied me to the cash register and paid my bill, wishing me a "Merry Christmas." It changed everything about the trip. I could feel that God and the angels were protecting me, or so it certainly seemed.
I am so very thankful for these two angels in my life.
|Monday, November 18th, 2013|
|Happy Birthday to Nine!
This is the last year that my youngest will be in the single digits. After this year, it's double digits for birthdays.
Nine wanted me to wake him at 5 a.m. so that he would be awake at the actual time of his birth, which was closer to 6 a.m., which is when I actually woke him. He might have stayed awake, but I didn't. Yesterday, the day before Nine's birthday, we celebrated at Chevy's in Ontario, when we went to pick up the new HO. Nine also got a mint chocolate chip birthday cake at B-R.
|Thursday, November 14th, 2013|
|Twelve Becomes Thirteen
Thirteen years ago, and that's hard to believe, I was in labor with my firstborn. A couple of days ago, as we were driving East to West across the country, he lost his last baby tooth at a Braum's in Oklahoma. He was hoping to wait until his birthday to lose it, but being that we were traveling, tonight's the first night he's had a proper pillow and bed. And so, the Tooth Fairy is contemplating that last toothy letter to my new teenager.
We have so much to be thankful for in coming across the country safely. Also, I've had a little bit of proposal work this week, for which I am very thankful.
It's great to be back in L.A. We left North Carolina around 8:30 a.m. on Sunday morning and got into L.A. around 4:30 a.m. Wednesday morning. Tonight, I was on Goodnight Universe, with Cole Young and Chris Ramirez. Ramirez actually has a studio attached to his house, which is extremely cool. I felt as though I was back in radio. And in fact, Ramirez taped a couple of promos from me.
Twelve wants a visit to the Lego store in Glendale for his birthday, and he wants to go out and eat. I'm glad that he and Eight will be spending their birthday with their daddy, being that they did not last year. Last night, before Goodnight Universe, I actually got to blow out candles on my own birthday cake. That was a lot of fun and the boys and I enjoyed the cake. SF got a piece of cake as well.
Cole gave me a bag of pot brownie mix. No kidding. I'm looking forward to make those, sometime when the kids are asleep. It's fabulous to be back in California. Oh yes, it is.
Happy Birthday to Thirteen, who will officially turn that number (and be able to get his own Facebook account) around 6:18 p.m. tonight.
|Sunday, November 3rd, 2013|
|Happy Birthday to Me!
Sometimes, I put a lot of pressure on myself about this whole birthday thing. Today, I just decided to let things flow. Yesterday was fabulous. We went to a neighbor's chicken stew and then, to a weiner roast on the next ridge. We came home full, and with some extra chicken stew. Today, we were going to eat that stew after church and then, Angie and her family decided to go to an Italian restaurant and the boys and I decided to go with them. Turns out, the preacher and his wife were there as well. So, we had a big ol' table at the Italian place. And we saw our former preacher, P.K. Some of you might remember that he chided me for "The Dildo Song." But all seemed to be forgotten today, when he led the birthday band of restaurant waiters over to sing "Happy Birthday" to me. And I got ice cream. And some cake, most of which went to my progeny, who never seem to get enough to eat.
That festivity lasted until almost 4 p.m. and then we took Twelve to sell Boy Scout popcorn, which is what I was doing at my actual time of birth, 5:22 p.m.
We came back to Villa Villekula and built a fire. I've been chillin' ever since.
Oh, btw, I got texted birthday wishes from J., E., and my ex-husband. I appreciate all of those. But there were no birthday wishes from my current husband. It looks as though it wouldn't have killed him to text "Happy Birthday" to me, but maybe it would have, in which case, I'm glad he didn't text it. I am happy to say that his father sent me a card, as did his aunt.
Nobody really wants to leave N.C. for a couple of weeks to go back to California, but we need to do that soon. We are having loads of fun here.
The church sang "Happy Birthday" to me also today. And when R.M., choir director and husband of my friend, A. (yes, he went to the Italian restaurant today as well) had all of us with birthdays this week to stand up, he said that we should sing "Happy Birthday" and the congregation should listen. Well, hahaha. Turns out, M.C. (we share the same birthday, but he is one year older) and I were singing in the choir today and the other person with a birthday sings in a bluegrass band. So, I guess it would have been fun if we'd sung it to ourselves. But it was nice to have others sing it to me as well.
I'm feeling pretty loved and happy now, not so much by SF, but by lots of others. Maybe he just has a different way of showing things. Or maybe he just doesn't like me. Whatever the case, I have three wonderful sons who seek okay with me most of the time. And for those sweet little guys, I am extremely thankful.
|Friday, November 1st, 2013|
|The Veil Between the Living and the Dead
Here we are, at that time of the year again, the time when the veil between the living and the dead is thinnest. Or at least, that's what I read a couple of years ago. Somewhere. Maybe in the Almanac?!? That's what Halloween, and its afterday, All Souls Day on November 1st, is all about. Last year, I remember having a dream about my adoptive cousin, J., who'd died when I was a teenager. This past Thursday, I was talking with a neighbor and friend who started listening to a song that he said his uncle played on the radio when he was alive. I guess we are in that season of the year when we can most easily think about and perhaps communicate with the dead.
Speaking of the dead, last Sunday, after church and before we headed to the State Fair in Raleigh, we stopped by Greensboro for my adoptive great uncle's funeral. He was the youngest of his nine or so siblings and now, they are all dead. His sister was my beloved adoptive grandmother, Grandma C. I remember reunions that we went to when I was a child. All of the siblings, except the one who died in World War II, were alive and well and I remember one photograph with them all in it, taken at Grandma C.'s brother's house in Virginia. The uncle who died last week lived in Greensboro. He'd been sick for a few years and his daughter, wife, and grandchildren had been taking care of him. I got lost in Greensboro (who knew there were two
High Point Roads?!?) and missed the funeral. But we got there just in time for the burial, with "full military honors." It was nice for my boys to see a funeral with guns and soldiers and a folded flag given to the widow. I'm sure that Uncle Calvin would have loved the educational experience that he provided. But it's sad that he's gone. It's always sad when someone dies, especially when that someone is a lovely person who was always kind and generous, as Uncle Calvin was.
So, things are always changing, whether we want them to or not. People are always dying, whether we want them to or not.
Here I am, currently in North Carolina, wondering what I'm going to do with a marriage that's less than fulfilling, but better than nothing. Here I am, trying to make my children into the rednecks that they really should be, with the lineage of my natural family, and really, with that of my adoptive family as well. We are listening to lots of country music and a neighbor is having a chicken stew tomorrow night. And so, we will do what we can to keep the boys from being city slickers, even though they were born smack dab in the middle of Los Angeles (way too close to the border of Beverly Hills).
Lord help me, I sure do miss the pot stores of L.A. A neighbor here told me of a friend of his that got arrested for pot seeds
in his car. Having said that, I sure do hope I've vacuumed the HO well since I got to North Carolina. I did get pulled the other night, btw, and the officer was awesome, letting me go without even running my California driver's license.
So, I'm drinking alcohol and really missing pot. I'm missing the Gingerbread House, too. But I must say that here, at church and most other places, I'm really feeling loved. Oh, there is the occasional thing, such as whoever turned in the HO to the N.C. DMV for having California license plates (evidently, that's a sin in N.C.). But overall, things are really nice here in N.C. C.C. the Wonder Dog has had three puppies and the cats are loving the grass and trees. So are the boys.
And for the bitches--forgive me if I'm wrong on guessing who did this, but I'm pretty sure it was two bitches who want me out o' state--who turned in the HO, well, I'm trying to forgive and forget. But if they do anything else, I hope they remember that I have some pretty funky $hit on them as well.
Oh, and no, I did not go to the WKNC-FM reunion tonight at the Player's Retreat in Raleigh. We've been to Raleigh and back twice this week, once for the fair and once for a dentist visit (no cavities for any of us!). And so, I was more than happy to go to a football game that my alma mater actually won
tonight. But we are planning to go to the chicken stew tomorrow night, followed by a weiner roast, followed by a costume party where Twelve (way too soon to be 13) takes karate. And so, it ain't like we're bored here in the sticks.
Happy Thin Veil to You and Yours, Whether Living or Dead!
|Thursday, October 10th, 2013|
|Latest V.V. Stuff
Since I last wrote, the boys and I have been ziplining with the youth group at church. Fortunately, Eight was able to attend his soccer game before the trip, and Ten attended his football game afterwards. Everything worked out beautifully, including that nobody fell off the zipline.
In not so great news, Don's wife, Peggy, fell and has been in the hospital. Some of you might remember that Don's store has been my refuge since I was an infant. It used to belong to his daddy, but now, he runs it pretty much by himself, with his wife's help. It was closed for a whole week and now, it's back in business. Thank goodness. I was going crazy when it was closed. There was a whole different vibe in the 'hood and it wasn't a good one.
In a couple of days, SF and I will have our 16th wedding anniversary. Celebrating it might be an odd choice of words, considering that we'll be 2,400 miles apart. And considering that we're not that close in thought or deed. So, I'm not sure what's happening with the marriage, but we still are legally married. Perhaps that in and of itself is cause for celebration.
Please pray for Don's family as Peggy heals.
And as always, the boys and I would appreciate any good vibes or prayers you send our way.
|Wednesday, September 25th, 2013|
|Trying Hard Not to Drink
"Mom, you have a negative effect on the universe
," said Ten. I'd like to laugh at that or ignore it or something. After eleven years of therapy, I'd like to think that comments like that roll off me like water off a duck's back. But they don't. Or as I told SF when I briefly talked with him before a few more trying moments with the boys, "Imagine if [SF's boss] told you that every morning." I've worked at some pretty $hitty jobs before, but I've never really had anybody (except boyfriends) talk with me in that way. And you can kinda understand the boyfriend thing, right?!?
But by somebody I gave birth to?!?
I have only had two days of relative sobriety, but I really am trying to deal with my problems in a way besides drinking wine. I've been drinking way too much of it lately. It's expensive. And not healthy in large doses.
After Ten heard me talking with his daddy on the phone, he said he was sorry, that he didn't mean the comment. I wish I could derive some kind of mommy wisdom from all this, some cute little quip that would put it in somewhat of an Erma-Bombeck-ish perspective. But right now, I'm too busy hurting and wondering if I should just allow my children to live like wild wolf cubs instead of making them follow rules and guidelines.
Sometimes, I'm really tempted by the wolf cub method.
|Tuesday, September 24th, 2013|
|Happy Birthday, Aunt Joni!
Well, she's not actually the boys' aunt and she's not actually my sister, but sometimes I forget. She's been there for me since I was a wee thing and I'm very thankful that she is in my life. Tonight, when I texted a Happy Birthday to her, she texted back and said that her husband Greg took her to a special birthday dinner. I'm so glad that she is having a fabulous birthday. She deserves it!
p.s. I also found out tonight that SF's uncle's birthday is today. That's the boys' natural great uncle. I didn't know that he shared a birthday with Joni, but that is very cool. Happy Birthday, Uncle Gene in Nebraska!
|Tuesday, September 17th, 2013|
|Eight Gets Saved
A few years ago, Twelve got saved during Vacation Bible School (VBS) and when he told this news to his paternal grandfather (PG), PG replied by saying, "Saved from what?"
That reply reminded me just how far I'd gotten from my Southern roots. You see, the one thing that I could never quite find in Raleigh, and have yet to find in L.A., is a church. There are lots of churches, churches all over the place in both cities, but nothing quite like I find around here. Frankly, I love the church I grew up in. I love the people. I love the church building. I love the fellowship hall.
It was pretty cool this past Sunday, during the invitation, when Eight whispered and asked me if it was okay for him to go up to the altar. If you're reading this and you are not Baptist, you may have no idea what the whole getting saved thing and/or the whole invitation thing is all about.
But it's a really neat thing in that through getting saved, you invite Jesus into your heart. It saves you from hell. And it makes you a Christian. It's really hard for atheists, et al., I'm guessing, to understand all of this. It probably seems like so much bull$hit to them. But to me and other Christians, it's a really important thing. It's something that you decide by faith. One thing I really like about being saved in the Baptist church is that you come to the decision on your own, not as a result of some class or some such.
So, I was pretty proud of and pleasantly surprised that Eight went up to the altar. It was especially cool that it was church homecoming and that the preacher that day happened to be the one who baptized me.
We had been unsure of whether to go to last Saturday's Dodgers game with Cub Scouts in California or not. Partly due to finances and also due to time constraints, we decided not to go. Seeing that Eight got saved last Sunday, I'd say we made the right decision.
|Friday, September 13th, 2013|
|Whore or Skank?!?
Before I get into this whole debate, I would like to thank M., a homeschooling mom, for her inspiration on getting my a$$ in gear and writing another journal entry. I've been pretty lazy, partly due to my appearances on Goodnight Universe (GU). I do love being on that show, or perhaps I'm just addicted to it. If the latter is the case, I'd put it close to my addiction to taking classes at NCSU. That addiction lasted for years. I had to move to the West Coast just to get away from it. But I haven't been writing much on my blog. That's where M. comes in--she told me today that a few nights ago, she had insomnia. She woke up at 3 a.m. and "caught up on reading" my blog, as she put it. Evidently, the Comic Mom blog is great for insomniacs. Maybe that's why I'm writing this at almost 6 a.m., being that I went to sleep beside Eight, per his request, and planned to be up in 30 minutes or so, but ended up sleeping for, oh, about five hours. Maybe writing all this will put me back to sleep before the sun comes up. Maybe.
Five nights a week or so, I either set my cell phone clock to wake me at 1:30 a.m. or so; or I just stay up. When we're at the Gingerbread House (GH), I am usually walking around the GH 'hood between 10 and 11 p.m., talking while SF supervises baths. Yes, I realize that my kids have late bedtimes. Nonetheless, on the East Coast, talking on GU is quite an excursion. I am so thankful for it. It gives me a much needed mental vacation from all the crap that's going on in the Villa Villekula (VV) 'hood.
Well, you know, with my neighbor and such. And by that, I mean the female neighbor who calls me a whore every chance she gets. I've provided a link to this definition and I can tell you right now that the first meaning does not at all do me justice. If I were indeed a "woman who engages in sexual acts for money," well then, I'd have more money. I'd also be having sex. Or so one would assume. I guess you could say that all stay-at-home moms are whores because we all pretty much have sex with our husband for money. I mean, I guess that counts. And so, in that respect, I certainly am a whore.
But I'm not a very good whore. I really need to market myself better. And have sex from time to time. Oh, and I guess it needs to be with someone besides my husband. But then again, that would require time and energy that I don't seem to have right now. Or as the Erma Bombeck book I'm reading now is titled, A Marriage Made in Heaven or Too Tired for An Affair.
Listening to my whore-calling neighbor, however, it seems as though I do nothing but have men in and out of VV all night. I could go into all kinds of analyses about my neighbor. And btw, I'm not the only person who notices that she acts a little crazed from time to time. I'm guessing she doesn't have that great of a relationship with her husband, NMHH. Or I'll put it this way, most people I know in Bocephus County and the surrounding areas seem to have good marriages. Ironically, or maybe not, they don't take time to stand on my property line and call me a whore for several minutes. Perhaps that's merely a coincidence, but I'm thinking that part of a good marriage (as if I would know anything about that) is spending more time talking with your husband and less time calling any neighbors names. Well, that's just a guess, though.
So, I'm talking about this woman on GU, of course, and her physical assault on me and her harrassment of me and my children, and of course, Ramirez was envisioning me with her husband. I have known her husband, btw, since he started school. We used to ride the bus together, in fact. So, it's not as though talking to him is some newfangled thing. I do like talking to him and we have talked a lot. According to Merriam-Webster, this act does not make me a whore. Well, unless maybe you count me as a "venal and unscrupulous person," the third definition. I had to look up "venal," and I can tell you that I'm really not that either. I'm far far from perfection, but I would say I was at all unscrupulous. I try very hard to be scrupulous. So, I may not be the whore that she thinks I am.
However, in talking on GU the other night, I looked at their chat board and saw that somebody, thinking, I guess, that Ramirez's fantasies about NMHH and me (and believe me, they are his fantasies) are actual fact. That person, Guest 115, called me "skanky." Now, when I think of that word, I can't help but to think of BtL's wife. I think that anyone who'd steal $$$$ from me, and from her own family, could certainly be called "repugnantly filthy or squalid" or "of low or sleazy character." But someone who talks to a neighbor she went to school with?!? Maybe that's what passes for skanky these days. This same Guest 115, btw, also said that I sound as though I weigh "500 lbs." When I asked Ten what that would even sound like, he started talking as if he were out of breath. I'm thinking he's right. That would certainly be the case, probably. Do I sound out of breath?!? I am thankful to say that I weigh less than half of this and so, I couldn't help but wonder if my whore-calling neighbor (WCN) was listening to the GU show and commenting on the chat board. Oh, probably not, but still . . .
So, am I a whore or a skank?!?
Whichever one I am, if I am either, I certainly would like to get back asleep before the sun comes up.
|Tuesday, August 27th, 2013|
|Not Back to School, Again
So far, so good on the homeschooling thing. I am very thankful that we are still able to do this. I gave Twelve the option of playing football this year, but unfortunately, that option required that he attend the local county--let's call it "Bocephus" county--school. He had really been looking forward to football, to improving himself, et al. But the seventh and eighth grade community teams have now been taken over by the Bocephus County school system and by golly, they want to make sure that all football players follow the rigors and zero tolerance of the Common Core Curriculum. Even private Christian school students cannot step on the hallowed football ground as a player if they do not adhere to the North Carolina Nazis. In Florida, a friend tells me, homeschoolers can participate in any extracurricular activity. Not in North Carolina, however, where the pressure to conform to increasing governmental standards makes it even more difficult to be a non-conformist. Or as one of the coaches told me: What if ten black kids wanted to play on the football team, but they just don't go to school.
And people call me
racist?!? I'd say that those ten black kids will have parents that will have to take responsibility for their a$$e$. But who believes in individual responsibility anymore?!? Certainly not the Bocephus County school system. Or any other school system in N.C.
Twelve could have gone to school. His daddy and I would have supported him in that. I told him that he could. But when we got to thinking about how he'd be in school from about 7:30 a.m. to after 3 p.m., and then would have football practice until 6 p.m., we all got to wondering just how he was going to do anything else; his beloved guitar would have to take a back seat. The fifth and sixth grades are still, for the moment, under community control. And so, Ten is playing football this year. Eight is doing soccer. Twelve has substituted karate for football. We're all surviving just fine. Oh, and did I say that when I tried to call the Bocephus County school superintendent, who I bet hasn't taught an actual class to students in years, he was too busy and self-important to return my phone call, even though I graduated with him and his wife. Oh, and did I tell you that I've paid over $12,000 in taxes in the past few years, much of which has gone, no doubt, to him and his predecessors. He makes over $150,000 per year. Per f'-in' year
. So, I do think I deserve at least a phone call from him.
We were sitting and doing math this afternoon and as I was explaining a concept to Twelve, I noticed how very deep his voice is getting. He's becoming, slowly, slowly, a man. Quickly, quickly, if the truth be known. A proverbial light bulb turned on in his brain. I was so glad I could witness this event. It's late and I need to go to bed, but I am very thankful that Twelve chose himself and what he does over the forced Bocephus school system. I just wish he hadn't had to make that choice this year.
|Saturday, August 17th, 2013|
|Homeschooling Versus Football
So, after two weeks of football practice for Twelve, he was informed yesterday that he cannot play on the team. Because, even though he's in the school district, he is homeschooled. He must be enrolled in the middle school to play football there. We're not talking high school, folks, but seventh and eighth grade
. I told him that I was willing to register him, if he wanted me to. But we got to thinking about it and he'd pretty much have to give up guitar if he was in school from 8 a.m. to after 3 p.m., with fooball practice from 3:30 until around 5:30 p.m. But if that's what he wants, I'll do it.
He decided this morning that he didn't want to do it. It wasn't worth it to go to school right now, just to play football. It's a real loss to think that in middle school, things have become so very strict. Then again, it shows me one more reason to loathe the government schools. J., a homeschooling mama friend, told me that in Florida, homeschool students can participate in any
extracurricular activity. But the proverbial reins are tightening in North Carolina. Why, oh, why?!? Last year, Twelve could have played as a homeschooler in seventh grade, but this year, he cannot. His coach and the principal really wanted him to register for school. He's got the weekend to make a final decision, and I'll support him in whatever he decides. However, I will say that I'm quite proud of the decision he's made so far. With Common Core hitting the tracks soon, in every school, he will be wise to stay far away from government schools. It's a damn shame that they make football in N.C. dependent on attending a certain school. Even private Christian school students cannot play. I'm still so very thankful that we homeschool. I'm thankful that Twelve shows signs of a thinker, not a herd follower.
|Tuesday, July 23rd, 2013|
|Two Churches and An Assault
One good thing about mama's getting assaulted this past Sunday evening is that come Monday morning, my boys slept in until 11:30 a.m., giving me time to do yoga and laundry--hooray! Another positive thing--and I am trying to look at the positive in this situation--is that I am okay. It is a little over twenty-four hours since the assault and my physical pain has pretty much left me. For that, I am extremely thankful.
Also, as much as parts of this weekend sucked big time, I am thankful that I got to go to church not once, but twice
this weekend: once on Saturday and again, with my regular church gig on Sunday. And yes, I do sing in the choir on that Sunday one. The boys were going to a Seventh-Day Adventist (SDA) Bible School this past week and their closing ceremony, which totally rocked, was on Saturday morning. It was a spirit-filled service indeed. My wonderful N.C. neighbor, J., told us about it. She was also the VBS director. Being that, I have no idea how she took the time to talk to me, but she is like that. She does a lot of stuff and makes it all look easy. She also has a strong faith in God, which I saw on Saturday morning. It was an inspiration for the boys and for me to be at the SDA VBS and their Saturday morning service this week.
Oh, but back to the assault. You are wanting to know about that, right?!? I'm almost there.
This weekend was sucky in another way. Some of you remember hearing about my friend Tish. She was in my wedding to SF and so, we've been friends for well over 18 years. That's a long effin' time. She called me last week to tell me that she would like to come up and visit. Her son, K., is almost Twelve's age and he gets along well with all three of my boys. He is a delight and I always enjoy having him around. His mother, however, informed me this weekend that if I had not let her new live-in lover, let's call him Shack-Up Guy (SUG), come with them, she would not have come to see me. It is important to know that she has known SUG for a few months ( much less than a year) and has already allowed him to move in. What an unfair thing to do to K, but Tish seems to feel as though having a man in her life is more important than her friends. It's also seeming to be more important than K., unfortunately.
I can handle that, though, even though it's very sad to see that she has given up so much, including what I thought was a good friendship, all because she was so desperate to have a man move in with her and K
. If you pray, please pray for this whole situation.
Now, back to me, me, me:
Sunday afternoon, after all the Tish stuff had gone on and I had learned that her years-long friendship with me was not as important as the new SUG, a friend and neighbor called me. He was drinking. Again. Oh well. The boys and I needed to get some cat food (a semi-emergency with four kittens on the porch) and he wanted to ride with us. He had wanted me to buy some beer for him, but I would not do it, being that he is on my prayer list--I am praying that he stops drinking. But I did agree to let him ride with us and when he went into a convenience store and bought himself some more beer, I let it slide. He'd been arguing with his wife. Again.
Let me also tell you that his wife, when I went to return a key one morning and was talking with My Neighbor/Her Husband (MNHH), called me a whore
and told me never to come on her land again. There's more of that kind of thing that she's done, but we'll leave it at that for right now.
And so, MNHH was spending some time away from her and close to where he grew up. It's a long story, but he and she now own the land together. I mention this because while she was physically assaulting me, she was telling me to get off her land. And she was right--it was her land, even though her husband had asked me to take him there. After we got cat food, the boys (who were in the HO the entire time) and I took MNHH back to where he was staying that night, which was about a mile or so from where NMHH and his wife live. To give you some backstory here, NMHH and I grew up together--we used to ride the same bus--and we like talking to each other. That's nothing that SF doesn't know about, btw. There's nothing for me to be ashamed of. He also has helped me to take care of V.V. while I am in California, something I really appreciate. And so, taking him and the boys to run a couple of errands didn't seem like such a big sin. But Wifey thought it was. You'd have thought that I learned my lesson about locking the HO doors when that guy opened my passenger door near the Liquid Zoo a couple of months ago. But I was so close to home. My elementary and high school busses used to pass by this very place. I didn't think I'd need the doors locked. She opened my door and started physically assaulting me, pulling my hair and punching me in the ear. Fortunately, NMHH was able to pull her off me, only by ripping off her shirt, though. She was having some kind of conniption fit and she seemed to have some extra strength going on. I won't lie about how much it hurt me. It hurt. She was just grabbing sections of my hair and pulling it as hard as she could. She wanted a junior high catfight, but as soon as NMHH pulled her off me, I closed and locked my door and asked Twelve to close and lock the passenger side and I got the hell out of there. She probably thought she had this California girl blocked in, but I am a country girl in my heart and always will be. The HO and I went around her and her car and got out safely. Fortunately, I didn't hit a thing. And so, things could have been much worse.
I called SF as soon as I got back to V.V. He's not much for psychological analysis usually, but I think he is right in that Wifey is looking for someone to blame her crappy marriage on and I am a convenient target. I will stay away from this crazy bitch from now on. NMHH can have her. And as much as I like talking with NMHH, she can have him, too.
I'm so very thankful to be alive and okay.
|Thursday, July 18th, 2013|
|A Gecko Dildo?!? Thank You, Goodnight Universe
Since I've been on the East Coast, I've been calling Goodnight Universe
, the Chris Ramirez and Cole Young show that's sweeping the country, one dusty laptop at a time. Then again, maybe that should be dusting
the country. I called when we were at the Gingerbread House as well, but it was much earlier in the evening, i.e. at 10 p.m., when, I think, the Good Lord intended for Goodnight Universe to be on. But between 1 a.m. and 2 a.m., there's just way too much sleepiness in the Comic Mom head and I come up with things like a gecko dildo.
You see, Twelve is keeping a gecko for three or so months so that he can get his amphibians and reptiles merit badge. And when I started talking with GU about it, I realized that this poor gecko has only mammals surrounding him or her. Let's say her. It's an ugly beast to me, but perhaps, to another gecko, it would be not so very bad. Or perhaps it would be hot
. And so, while we are depriving this beast of other reptile company, why not allow it some physical pleasure. A gecko dildo would do the trick. I guess. I don't even like having this lizard thing in Villa Villekula, but then again, I don't want it to be lonely.
In more mammalian news, the boys have been to two Vacation Bible Schools since we got here. I have made an executive decision, with which SF agrees, to take a break from sports. We just finished soccer and we've had weeks on end of scout camp. And so, we're taking a break from sports for July and trying to figure out what we want to do. Well, that is, I'm
trying to figure out stuff. Nobody seems to be suffering from lack of organized sports activity for this month and I'm enjoying the relative lack of activities. On the other hand, we have room for stuff that pops up, such as this week's VBS.
I am so very thankful for a successful and safe trip across the country. Lots of people helped make this happen and for all their efforts and prayers, I am so grateful.
|Monday, July 8th, 2013|
|Carowinds and VBS
Our pediatrician, Dr. Paul Fleiss, is a wonderful doctor, but a Southerner he is not. When the boys got their physicals last month, Ten happened to be wearing a VBS t-shirt from a couple of years ago. He was wearing it, in fact, the day that he and his brothers were taped for the Conan O'Brien show. Dr. Fleiss, bless his non-Southern heart, asked Ten about this and of course, my son said "Vacation Bible School." Still a bit new to the concept, Dr. Fleiss asked Ten if he learned a lot. And Ten said that he did. So very true, that statement is. Tonight, the boys are attending VBS. They all were so thrilled with last night's VBS that they wanted to leave Carowinds early today to get back for things tonight. And get back they did. Ten came home last night quoting a Bible verse and Twelve saw a really cool chalk artist who illustrated a Bible story for the teen group.
So, yes, they have been learning a lot. And I've been having a little chill time for Mommy.
This morning, I followed the church bus (not the VBS church, but the church I grew up in) to Charlotte. The bus driver (B.D.) was not slow, which I totally appreciated. We got down there pretty darn quickly. And nobody got a ticket.
|Wednesday, June 26th, 2013|
|When Mommy Is A Comic
I've been performing comedy on stage in L.A. since before Twelve was an embryo. This kind of thing has to affect a child. Oh sure, you could chalk up any $mart a$$ remarks that he makes to the fact that he's been listening to at least one comic since he was in the womb. But usually, I'm not that much of a $mart a$$, and so, maybe we could blame those remarks on his taking after his daddy's side of the family. LOL! Oh, please be laughing at that if you are actually on his daddy's side of the family and have just read this. Please also know that there are absolutely no $mart a$$es on my side of the family. LOL!
Anyway, here is my "going through puberty," as he puts it way too often, son
and he and I have been at the Gingerbread House for the past couple of days without either his brothers or his daddy. Ten and Eight are at scout camp with their daddy until tomorrow. Monday night, we had a fabulous time visiting them up at the edge of Ventura and Kern counties. Where they are is really out in the country and Ten and Eight seem to be having a blast.
Tonight, I went to LCIM (formerly ECCM) for an acupuncture appointment with Brandon. Needless to say, I was completely stressed. Last week's stint at den leader at Cub Scout Day Camp (we seem to be camping a lot lately!), combined with lots of other stuff (fortunately, nothing serious with health), has made my body say, "Whoa! I really need a break." And since SF is taking over the camping reins this week, I am getting a nice little break. I'm so thankful for that break. I'm also thankful that I have a wonderful acupuncturist to go to, to help my body to recover. Taking care of thirteen children, nine of whom I didn't
give birth to, all day for five days, can be a bit stressful. Twelve was our den chief and Ten and Eight were in our den. I had a wonderful co-leader and so, things were great in lots of ways. And yet, it was a bit more stress than I was used to. I remember that Brandon's wife told me one time that we need to rest after periods of stress, that zebras, when they catch prey, will be extremely stressed. But after the prey is caught and eaten and such, they take a few days of doing nothing. Problem is, she said, regarding our society, that we don't take those few days off after major stresses. So, I think about how I need to be a bit more like a zebra sometimes.
After acupuncture, Twelve and I were to a really superduper cool program at Burbank Library. I dropped him off and found a parking place. Thinking I would just be a few minutes and then, I'd be able to move my car, I parked in the 10 minute parking space. Oh, but the guy doing the show, Michael Mezmer, was indeed so very mesmerizing that I never did move my car until after an hour or so. I went up to the multipurpose room to check on Twelve and I was hooked. Calling himself a phenomenist, Michael did some crazy effin' stuff. For instance, he and an audience member focused on a bolt with a nut on it. All of us in the audience saw the nut unscrew itself from the bolt. If this sounds crazy, it absolutely was. Twelve was drafted to be part of a group that held hands, thought about a light bulb going on, and was able to turn the light bulb on
. As we say in North Carolina, I ain't $hittin' you
In fact, one of the many interesting stories that Mezmer told us about about dowsers.
He kept saying that they find water in the desert
. After the show, I informed him that most of the wells I know of in North Carolina were found by dowsers. He said he would note that very thing, that dowsers aren't just in the desert. Dowsers look for water with a stick that's shaped like a "Y" and they often find that water. Indeed, they use psychic vibrations to find water. And for Mezmer's last act, I experienced those very vibrations. Well, the psychic part anyway. We didn't find the source for a well under the library--LOL!
The way things happened were that Twelve was chosen for the light thing, as I said, and even though I raised my hand--because I thought it would be cool if we did it together--Michael pointed at me and said that he'd call on me for a "special" thing later. I figured that he was like most guys and that what he had said was merely bull$hit to keep me quiet and happy. But sure enough, for the last act, he said, "where is the girl in black?" and I realized that he was talking about me
. And so, I went up on stage and he said something like, "You really wanted to be on stage, right?" and I said, "I guess so," because I had wanted to be on stage with Twelve, but here I was, beside him, with Twelve taking a picture with my cell phone (Ten and Eight have the big camera at camp.). I don't know how to download pics from my phone, but maybe I'll post pics later.
Anyway, here I was, on stage and Michael started talking about Russian Roulette
, asking me if I was familiar with the concept. Well, yes, I am
, but why?!? I couldn't help wondering how that was going to figure into things. Then, he pulled out four staple guns, asking me to look at them. He also said that Russian Roulette was so named because in some war (I forget which one--I was a little nervous while on stage), those who looked after the prisoners of war would bet on who would be the next person killed, in a Russian Roulette fashion. Nice. What the hell am I doing on stage?!?
He loaded staples into one of the staple guns and I realized that I had this kind of strange fear of staples. I had witnessed someone staple his finger when I was a child. This boy was a few years older than I was and as I was looking at those staple guns, I couldn't help but think of that fear of stapling skin. I'll mention here that another mom, called up earlier on stage, had said that her fear was, well, being on stage
. Afterward, Twelve, who mentioned more than once that he was "born to be on stage," and I have no understanding of that particular fear. I mention this fear stuff because if there's one thing we learned at that show, it was about how strong our mind is. In fact, Michael told everybody that he uses no alcohol or "illegal drugs," that he gets his high from doing these shows. I think that's a pretty darn constructive way to deal with things.
Michael arranged those four staple guns, one loaded with staples, on a table that spins. I saw which one had staples, but then, he asked me to step up so that I couldn't see the guns and he spun the table. I had no idea which stapler was loaded after that spin. Then, he moved up so that he couldn't see the staplers and I stood behind them. He really connected to my mind. He had to. I was supposed to move my hand over the staplers and hold my hand over each stapler for a couple of seconds. He would tell me when to stop and when he said stop, I was supposed to hand the stapler that my hand was over to him. The first time, when all four staplers were there, he asked if I felt anything different about one stapler. Sure enough, while moving my hand over all four, my hand actually touched only one of the staplers. I didn't say this to him, but I did tell him that one felt different. I kept moving my hands and when he told me to stop, he picked up the very stapler that I'd accidentally (supposedly) touched. He then took the stapler and proceeded to staple his face. If it contained the staples, he would have stapled himself. Ouch! But it did not. A similar thing happened when there were only three staplers. My hand accidentally touched the stapler that he ended up picking. He stapled his face, with no seeming pain. Then again, he had showed us in an earlier act, how he got over his fear of wolf traps: by sticking his hand in a wolf trap.
It was hard for me to see his face, the way we were standing when he touched the stapler to his face. I wasn't sure, but thought he hadn't gotten the staples in the first two. I'm pretty sure I was shaking at this point.
We were down to two and I started moving my hands and then stopped when he said something about not moving them until he said ready
. So, things were a little mixed up, for me anyway. I started again and when he said, "Stop," he then said, "Move your hand to the other one." I did so and then picked up the stapler to give to him. Once again, he put the stapler to his face. Then, I gave him the very last one and he took it and put three staples in a piece of wood. We had indeed successfully played the stapler version of Russian Roulette and there was, thankfully, no blood involved.
Wow, that was mind blowing indeed. Afterward, while riding in the HO, Twelve mentioned that I could have not done what he asked or given him the wrong one. That thought had not entered my mind, but indeed, he was correct. I could have done so. Michael used that stapler thing, btw, to talk about risks, about how every choice comes with risk. I'm so very thankful that we made the right choices together.
After that rather life-changing experience, Twelve and I went to Dave's. For a perfect end to a perfect evening, Chris Ramirez, who was hosting, let Twelve have his iphone while Mommy did her comedy set. Twelve was in heaven. He discovered the "burp and fart app" that Ramirez had. Oh, joy on that one, eh?!?
Then, we went to the very clean tattoo parlor beside Dave's on Broadway in Glendale and, while mommy got a ring for her ear, Twelve watched the Dodgers beating the Giants 6-3. Listening on the way home, the Giants were closing in 6-5, but I don't know who won.
I asked Twelve if mommy now seems cool after an evening like that. He let me know that no, mommy is no cooler, but at least she does have some very cool friends, at least one of whom has an iphone. Well, it's probably the closest I will ever come to cool
|Sunday, June 23rd, 2013|
|What A Week!
This entry won't be long. I need to go back to bed. I am still somewhat exhausted. We had Cub Scout Day Camp this week and we were all in the same den. I was a den leader, Twelve was den chief, and Ten and Eight were in the actual den. So, we were all together all day this week. When I happened to mention this to my father-in-law in a phone conversation this week, he noted that we are together all day for most days. I said, yes, that's true, but that this past week, we've had to be civil to each other. Now, that's
Despite driving up to Ventura County each day, we also drove to Burbank for a magic show on Thursday night.
My soccer team, btw, lost in the playoffs. I really missed doing soccer yesterday, but I loved having no place to be.
Whew--I'm tired. More later.
|Saturday, June 15th, 2013|
|Maybe Something's In The Air
I remember one of my cool friends, Leila, in the technical publications department at Square D (yikes! that was way back in the 90s!) told me in 1999 or so that there was something happening, astrologically, so that lots of things were changing. People would be dying and moving and that kind of thing. Well, fortunately for me, it was moving. For some, it was dying. I know that people die all the time, but somehow, there seemed to be a cluster, right around when she was talking.
I have lost touch with Leila, but I couldn't help but think about her lately, and about her words in 1999.
There's some sad news here: A few days ago, we got a couple of kittens from Gretchen, the boys' Gymboree teacher. That was, gosh, a few years ago in and of itself, but I've been able to keep in touch with Gretchen through Facebook and when she said she had kittens, well, I broke down and said we'd take one. Or two.
Today, we found out that one of those kittens has some kind of liver condition. The vet said it was congenital and it would cost thousands of dollars to get no guarantees, but maybe thousands of dollars would save her life. Maybe. But really, there's not much they can do. An ultrasound showed enlarged blood vessels around the liver, signifying something going on with the liver. We took her to the doctor because last week, when SF's daddy was visiting, he noticed that she, whom we've named "Stripey Jr." was lathargic. Her heart was also beating heavily at times. He figured it was worms, which made sense. We've been procrastinating taking her to the doctor, but today, SF took them while I took the boys to a meeting for Cub Scout Day Camp. And that's when we found out. We don't know how long Stripey Jr. has, but it is hard not to feel sad about this lovely little kitten.
Across the country today, in North Carolina, Ashley was going to organize and give away Dylan's clothes and toys today. Some of you might remember my talking about Ashley and Dylan. A few days before Mother's Day, they were in a wreck and the day after Mother's Day, Dylan died. Wow, I really feel sad just writing that. What a tragic thing to have happen. Ashley will be recuperating physically for a couple of months from her own injuries in the accident.
Even though we have been praying for Ashley and family and thinking about them, I can divert my attention from this situation for a while. Ashley and Chad cannot. I don't know how you deal with sorting through your dead child's clothing and giving it away. I really don't know. I never want to know how to do that. No parent does. But Dylan's death reminds us that all life is fleeting. You or I could be dead tomorrow, no matter who we are. Reality has changed for Ashley and Chad and their families. It will never be the same.
Thursday, in the northwestern N.C., Tony Barker died. He was a firefighter who was helping with the terrible storms that blew some really strong winds earlier this week. I didn't know him personally, but I read about his death in the newspaper. He was trying to find the source of smoke near some downed power lines. The electricity went through the ground, if I understand it correctly, and electrocuted him. He was only 36.
Who knows who will be next? Why do these things happen? I just don't know. But I did hear a preacher the other night on the radio who was quoting the now we see through the glass darkly
verse from the Bible. I know that we don't understand things from God's point of view and that we cannot in our earthly state. And so, we do not understand why these things happen. All we can do is to go on.
|Friday, June 14th, 2013|
|"Iron Man 3" at the El Capitan and Comedy at the Tattoo Shop
Here's my latest FB status update:
I'll admit a mild attraction to Robert Downey, Jr. when I saw "Iron Man 3" today. Well, when he didn't have blood on his body somewhere. I guess I like a man who's not bleeding. — at The El Capitan Theatre.
And yes, he was pretty darn hot at the beginning of the movie. He wasn't bleeding too much then.
My last entry talked about physicals and I'm thankful to report that everybody passed with flying colors. I'm really thankful for that.
Tuesday night, I went to acupuncture at LCIM (used to be ECCM) and then, I stopped by Dave's on the way back. Dave's on Broadway. In Glendale. Dave's is something like the oldest bar in Glendale. I think it's been around since 1933. That's a long time for a bar. A very long time. And it's also not bad for a comedy venue, although my guess is that it hasn't been hosting comedy all those 80 years. In the past few years, however, it's been quite the place for comics on Tuesday night. T.V. comic--from Last Comic Standing--Thai Rivera
came in during my set this past Tuesday night.
Before I went on stage, however, I sauntered over to the tattoo shop beside Dave's. Although I asked him to stay at Dave's, host John Clark followed me to the tattoo place, asking me if I was going to get a tattoo. I assured him I was not. I'd no more gotten the words out of my mouth when the lovely Laura Jean, bartender at Dave's, came over to see what was going on. As she neared the door of the tattoo shop, L.J. asked if I was going to get a tattoo. I told her no. Last, but not by any means least in this tattoo shop fiesta was Richie the C. Yes, he asked me if I was going to get a tattoo. And no, I had not changed my mind in the last few seconds, since L.J. asked me; or in the minute or so since John Clark had asked me. But Richie the C being Richie the C
, of course, had to come up with his very own tattoo for me, just in case I changed my mind: A minivan, with "HO" on it, with the doors open and the words "slide right in" underneath. I laughed myself all the way into the tattoo shop with that one. Btw, I was in there because they have piercing stuff, too, and I needed an earring to replace the piercing stud that I had put in in January
, when I was at the Walmart in North Carolina. So, it was certainly time to get rid of that piercing stud. I just never quite expected to have that much support in my decision, and that much encouragement for a tattoo.
Ah, the wonders of comedy. One never knows what might happen next.
|Friday, June 7th, 2013|
|A Visit with Dr. Fleiss, et al.
There's hardly anything better as a mother than to watch your children have healthy physicals. Two of mine, Eight and Ten, did exactly that today and Twelve is due for his tomorrow.
I so love Dr. Paul Fleiss. He is one of the kindest, most gentle, compassionate souls that I have ever met. There we were back in his office again. Last year, when the boys went for physicals, he was only working on Wednesday afternoons. This year, he works every afternoon. I'm guessing he's at least 75 or so. And yet, he's so extremely wonderful and fresh. Today, he made some of the funniest quips. It's hard to do good material around children, but I guess he's been around children for so long, that he is not at all intimidated by the challenge. He also talked a lot about vegetables and fruits, kinda sorta by my request. The boys looked at his "Periodic Table of Vegetables" and tonight, as they ate artichokes for supper, Twelve was talking about foods that help to prevent cancer, as he'd seen at today's visit.
We've had a rough past few weeks, mainly because of the business of our schedule. But to see two of my boys learn about their bodies and how to better take care of themselves, and to see them alive and healthy, wow, really, what more can there be?!?