Sunday, January 17, 2016

January is Hard

You'd think I'd learn.  You'd think I'd learn to keep my big mouth shut and just not argue with people who have already had their minds made up by someone else.  Especially when it's a very closed-minded opinion.  And the argument will boil down to "he said" "she said".

No, I'm not going to go into details.  Suffice to say all of their "proof" comes from religious based websites/groups and my "proof" comes from the site of the organization they're against.

And, if you know me, you know how much faith (lol) I put into religious organizations.  And how much of a far-left, bleeding-heart, tree-hugging hippy liberal I am.  (I do try and put on the reality filter, I do... but... my heart and what "reality" dictates are often quite different...)  So, while I may not have "proof" this person will listen to, I also have first hand knowledge.  (Which isn't good enough for her, yet someone else's first hand account is...)

So, yeah.  I fed a troll.  A troll who is someone in my extended "family", so sooner or later I'll have to deal with them face to face.  Oh well.  There's only so long I can bite my tongue and ignore things.

On the flip side, January is just being crazy busy and wearying.  Nothing too big or major, just lots and lots of little things and general business that takes it's toll.

Not-so-good things: crazy busy at work, cracked windshield on the LRH, I need new hiking boots, my phone borked (but was covered by insurance...), and my Missfit Flash seems to have randomly died on me.  Oh, and the roof at Gak's work is leaking and we're both crazy busy.

Good things: We spent today visiting with Amma and going to the Lego Store and having lunch together.  Boo-boy wanted a pick your own bucket of bricks, so we arranged this little trip.  Also, Boo-boy is reading.  As in really, really reading.  We had arguments and frustration and tears about reading before Christmas, but now, he's reading.  I'm just gonna go with it.  We, now, think the frustration at least partially boiled down to finding a book that was interesting and not super easy.  That and the fact that Daddy and Momma wanted him to read, so therefore he wasn't gonna. /eyeroll.

So, I'm now thinking that while he may have some challenges to the actual reading thing, and spelling is a family challenge, he's not really any more challenged then your typical 7-year-old.  Of course, this will change seven times in the rest of the school year.  Or maybe not, since we're really on a reading track now...

So, I think I'll just wrap this chaotic post up here.  Overall, other than books, trolls, and cookie season, nothing too exciting is happening around here.

Peace to all and may your trolls be few and your books be many.

Tuesday, January 05, 2016


Boo and his reading continue to baffle me.
A little background; I was reading by age 4 and reading Nancy Drew by age 6.  Boo has been stubborn about learning anything new and will do things on his own time thanks.  He has also recently become totally infatuated with Minecraft.  Asking the boy to read is like telling him you're going to run over Trey.  He can't or won't explain the problem.

For Christmas one of the books I bought Boo was a book called Diary of a Minecraft Zombie.  It is similar to Diary of a Wimpy Kid.  All the chapters were one or two pages and it was a hoot.  He devoured it in only a few hours.  He asked for the next one, so, of corse I ordered it. My boy was reading.  Voluntarily. He asked for a book. 

Well, it came today.  The evening was already a bit rocky because this week's spelling list is hard.  Ea  and ee vowel combos.  And after seeing where he stood with the list, I told him to do one of the practice exercises.  And nearly made him cry when I asked if this week was a tough list.  And asked what needed to be done about it.  Anyhow, after dinner and after he finished his spelling exercise, I gave him the books I ordered. 
He was all "meh" about it.
I tried not to be hurt.  It didn't quite work (see above, bookworm since age 4 or 5....).
Anyhow, week nights are reading nigjts, at least 10 minutes.  I told him he could start one of the books I got him, but I'd like it if he'd read a chapter out loud to me.  Again, icy resistance.  But, he got through a chapter.  This one was actually 4 or 5 pages, not 2.  Then he didn't want to read more, but he really needed to.  He managed another 5 or so before I told him he could be done.

So, yeah.  He confuses me.  When he doesn't think about it or it isn't required, he reads quite well.  When it, or anything really, becomes a "have to", it is worse than pulling teeth.  Sure, I used to balk a lot at room cleaning and stupid homework, but over all, I think I did most things when asked.  I didn't come almost to tears the moment someone said "you have to...".  I just don't know.  I worry.  I have talked some with his teacher.  She doesn't see many of these struggles in school.  But she has given good advice for home.  I just wish I could see into that brain of his and see what's what.  And throttle my own frustrations and expectations.  I have no idea what normal looks like and I just don't understand.  Knowing I don't understand only makes it worse, not better.

Anyhow, that's what is eating at me at the moment.  That and rude loud neighbors that keep invading my space with their noise.... but that is a different story.

Saturday, January 02, 2016

30 Years

Today is a strange day.  Today marks 30 years since my family moved into our house here in PA.

Most years, I don't even think about this date.  But, all day today it has been rattling G around in my head.  30.  Thirty.  Thirty years that my parents have lived in their house.  There were problems since day one with it.  And there still are.  My mom hates the house, but can't move right now for a number of reasons.  I wish they had been able to move back in 2000 like they talked about.  But, it just wasn't going to work.

Anyhow, thirty years is a long time.  It is 3/4 of my life to date.  It is as long, or longer, than many of my coworkers have been alive.

There have been many ups and downs along the way.  I'm still not sure I'm really a Pennsylvanian.  I still feel out of place here.  But I'm not sure I could really go back to KS or OK or MO either.  It still astonished me when a client notices I don't truly sound like I'm from PA.  Yet, I don't sound like I'm from Kansas either.

All I know is that moving here involved a lot of pain.  It felt doomed from the moment Dad picked me up early the last day of school before winter break and that it was sleeting when they were loading up the moving van.   It meant changing schools twice in the same school year.  It meant going from a world I knew and fit into, where I had good friends and good relationships with most of the people I knew, to a totally alien world where I was tormented and ostracized almost from day 1.  The first 6 years were very hard and involved lots of tears.  Then it got easier.  Then I thought I mostly fit in by the time I was in college.  But I don't really.  I love my friends dearly, but in some ways we are so very, very different.  And it is bothersome.  But, it is ok.

There have been many wonderful times as well as pain.  Many amazing summer days at camp or the nature center.  Many fun trips and explorations.  Many an evening hanging out with friends around a campfire and just enjoying the company.

So, overall I think the positive does win, but not by a huge margin.  I'm still carrying a lot of hurt from the first almost decade here.  Those wounds are deep.  And the wounds of a 10-year-old don't heal fully.

I'm not sure where I was going with this, other than to be amazed that it has been 30 years that I've called this state home.  Well  except the 10 months I spent in OK.  And that was its own adventure....

Peace to all and may the adventures in the coming year be amazing.

Saturday, August 01, 2015

The Summer So Far in Pictures

Well, I promised pictures over a week ago.  So, I figured I might as well load up a bunch of the pictures of the summer to day.  A month from yesterday Boo-boy heads back to school.  I can't believe it's August already!  Where has my summer gone?  I want it back!!  Although, at this point I'm sure Boo-boy is beginning to want to get back to the normal routine of school.  (I just wish we'd get the letter from the district with his supply list and teacher assignment and confirmation of his afternoon busing....)

We've had several adventures this summer.  We may not always get a lot of time together, but I try and make the most of it as best we can.

There was the field trip to the Crayola Factory with his class.  He asked if I could chaperon, and luckily enough, i was one of the ones who actually was chosen from all the parents that said they could.

We've had ice cream, several times.  We've had a picnic in the park.  We took Billy with us to the beach.  We went camping and to Knoebel's.  And we've had plenty of "hanging around the house" time.  So, with a month to go, I think this summer's been a pretty good one.

Two first grade classes at Crayola Factory.

A boy and his dragon.

Birthday Party time!

Zonked Cody.

Last day of school!

A visit from Lissa-love and the Kidlet.  Splashing fun in the creek and ice cream at Owow Cow!

Beach fun with Billy!

Sidewalk chalk and a picnic at the park.

Camping, hiking, swimming and Knoebel's!

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Camp The Rest

Well, I had a wonderful post I wrote last night about day two of our three-day, mid-week vacation, but the Blogger app is still saying it is saving and I can't get to it. Oh well, I'll just wite the short, short version.

Oh, there will be pictures, but they're mostly on the camera still... so stay tuned for that.

Anyhow, yesterday was a wonderful day.  Since Boo and I both tend to be hit the ground running kind of people, we actually had breakfast eaten and cleaned up a d were on a trail by 9:00. We hiked a bit, a lot of up hill climb was involved, including some beautiful running water and foliage.

After the hike we went to the park office and poked around.  Then drove into Forksville (yes,  that  is  a  real  place)and stopped at  the  general  store  and  got  ice, a fire starter and a bundle of  fire wood  yes, this Girl Scout cheated and used a commercial fire starter...

Then it was back to camp for a bit of quiet time (and I got a nap), then some lunch.  In the afternoon we went back to where the camp office is and there is a swimming area in the creek roped off.  (The creek is almost a small river at this point by my standards....)

This time we had a real, if not my most beautiful, fire and s'mores.

I will tell you this, the nights were very chilly.  And our tent was under trees and we'll shaded most of the day. It was beautiful.

So, after a snuggle to be warm this morning, we breakfasted  and broke camp in a leisurely manner.  Then it was on the road to Knobel's!

We got to the park a little after 11.  We rode several rides, including the log flume.  Boo panned for gems, which is a favorite activity of his.  We had lunch and ice cream as well in there.  We ended up leaving the park right about 3, and met Gak at Red Robin right about 6 after a stop at Cabella's  on the way home.

I'm so very glad to have had this little vacation.  We needed it.  Gak got a lot of things done he wanted to get done, and all three of us are happier for these three days.

Peace to play and may your vacations be wonderful.


Yeah, yeah, I've fallen off the blogging wagon again.  Oh well, life happens.  Actually, that is why I started this thing in the first place.  Oops....

So, for this chapter, we join Boo and me on our camping trip.  It was supposed to be the three of us, but Gak just wasn't feeling up to it.  And, in the long run I accept this.  I did  not accept it gracefully or without causing pain, but I got it through my thick skull it was ok.  I really have to stop being like this.

So, before I get to today's adventures, I think I need to write down exactly why I think I wasn't able to gracefully accept Gak wasn't up to coming.  (And his reasons are valid, really!) My mom and dad have a long standing agreement that mom can have all the adventures she wants and that dad is under no obligation to join in on them.  It worked quite well while we were growing up and beyond.  But, we only ever had 3 family vacations I can remember.  (Weekends going to Kansas City to visit family don't count....) And I think somewhere deep down, or not so deep down, I felt like I'd been denied something wonderful; that American fairy tale of the perfect family vacation, with all the built in imperfections.  I'm not really sure where this idea has come from, but there it is.  So.... I guess that even though 99.99% of the time I'm thankful Gak and I have a similar agreement... I'm still holding onto that ideal. And sometimes it makes me do ugly things and say ugly things.  I need to recognize this and nip it in the bud before I hurt anyone again.  This is my problem, not Gak's.

Now that I've got the navel gazing out of the way, on to the adventures.

Today has been filled with great things and not-so-good.
Of course, the whole leaving drama I caused falls in the not-so-good category.

I had to stop by Kat's to see if Andy found the water jug.  He didn't.

I got cash, drinks for the road, and ice at Wawa.  The trip on the Turnpike was uneventful, even if I spent the first half navel gazing while driving.  Driving is good for that...

We stopped for some lunch after getting off the Turnpike near Hickory Run.  My choice of Long John Silver's  wasn't a hit with Boo, but we saw a brown bear in the parking lot when  we got there!  I do believe this is the closest ice seen a live bear outside the zoo.

The rest of the drive was fairly uneventful, except the fact I missed an exit and added 20 minutes to the trip.  We stopped at a little road side ice cream place and restaurant, which was yummy.

Then, about 10 minutes from the camp site, the skies opened up.  It only poured for a short bit, but this wasn't the first, or probably last time I'll put a tent up while it was raining at least a little.  Thankfully even though our tent is big, it is easy to set up.  And Boo was a big help holding things.

The rain cleared up and the sky was beautiful within about an hour.  But, it was enough to soak what wood there was, because of course I didn't bring any.

We mostly hung around the site this evening.  I cooked my dinner in my propane grill.  I tried to make a fire but the MOJO wasn't with me tonight.  We still had our s'mores though, just toasted over propane.

Now a boy is "done with being outside" and is fighting off sleep in the tent.  I'm going to crochet a until it gets really sark, then I'm off to bed too.

Monday, June 01, 2015


Seven years... can it really be 7 years ago today that my amazing Boo-boy  was born? In one ways, it seems like only yesterday, in others, it seems like more than a lifetime ago.
So, what has changed in the last 365 days or so?
He is almost done with first grade.  This means full days instead of half days.  He is reading just about on grade level, give or take.  Math continues to be a strong suit.  He has friends and likes school.
He has lost all 4 of his front teeth, within about a 2 week time span.  He is now well over 4' tall and right around 60 lb.  I can't pick him up very well any more, but he's still my snug-a-boo.
He creates all kinds of amazing stories and shares them in great detail.  He has learned how to play on the PS3 and loves Disney Infinity.  He still loves drawing and creating and he gets to do that with Infinity.
He can sit through an entire movie.  He loved Avengers Age of Ultron and didn't even get scared at the loud parts.
Over all he's still an amazing, loving, smart, funny, and overall awesome little boy and I'm so very privileged to be his mom.

Thursday, January 22, 2015


Oops, it looks like I forgot to keep writing again.

The short version? We've been stupid busy.

The slightly  longer version? Work has been crazy for me, but that was expected.  Boo has been having much less trouble.  Girl Scout cookie sales have started and Gak is trying not to get run over by me.

So, now for the more detailed telling of the  last  two weeks...

I guess I'll start with Boo-boy.  Once we got the red car fixed and schedules returned to something approaching  normal, he returned to normal.  That boy has always had a problem with change and disruption  to his schedule.  And over the holidays it was a real mess. N he has had several really good days at school and has been green or better every day.  He never has been able to say what was bugging him, but he is back to almost  always using real words and his real voice.  The sparkle is back.  So, at least for now, we've passed the problem by.  But, I will continue to watch and worry.   That is my job as mom.

On the bigger plus side with Boo, he got to spend most of Monday with Amma.  They played.  They went and saw Paddington.  They went out to lunch and went shopping.  Overall  both of them needed the day.

January  is stupid  busy at my office. All the clients have to get their tax letters done by the end of the month.  So, on top of the normal, every day kinds of wuestions, we've got end of year kinds of questions.  So, it gets a little crazy, but we're almost there, which is good.  I've also changed things up a bit, I now get to work 8:30 - 5 instead  of 9 - 5:30 on Thursday and Friday.  That just started today.  I'm happy with the idea.

Girl Scout cookie sales started last week.  This year is going like gangbusters so far.  The downside is Rhi isn't in scouts this year, so no Julie for cookie mom.  So Kat and I are splitting the duties.  And really, even though it is more work for us, I'm happy with it.  Julie did an awesome job, like I knew she would, and I trusted her completely.  But, with Kat and I doing it, we have complete control.

And like insaid, Gak is mostly just trying  to stay out of the way and not get run over.  There has been some minor drama with gaming, but not much more than usual.  Work continues to be work and the daily struggle is about the same as ever.

And on a completely different and slightly random topic.... the Little Red Honda  just passed 200,000 miles on Saturday. Yup, Little Red is still running great and has passed the 200k  mark.  Very impressed.

So, I bid you peace and manageable chaos in your life.

Monday, January 12, 2015


Yep, today was a Monday, an icy, wet, icky, grumpy  Monday.

The morning started with being woken up by Gak's  phone ringing at 5 to tell us there was a 2 hour delay.  (So thankful to have 2 cars again...)

The rest of the "getting ready for work" time was uneventful.  I made a yummy lunch of sourdough and matzoh  ball soup.  I made tea.  I made out of the door about when I wanted to due to icy roads and having to clear a car off.

The roads were nice and clear  and I got to work with no problem.

Until I went to grab my lunch bag.  And it wasn't in the car.  Then I remember I'd put it on top of the car to open it because my other hand had my tea mug.  Then I don't remember putting it in my car after opening it......
Man.... I was so looking forward to my soup!

And the Internet  tried to be flaky when I got to work.

And did I mention it was just about freezing out.  And raining....

Yeah, it was a long day and I can't find my lunch bag.  Thankfully  I have soup left for tomorrow.

Now, I'm staring at 2.5 balls of lovely chroma yarn in fingering weight and I just can't find a pattern for it.  Or come up with any ideas of my own.  And it is taunting me.
So, yeah. Grump.

But, tomorrow is another day.  And hopefully I won't (literally) lose my lunch.  And it isn't supposed to rain.  And I get to give girls cookies and get that rolling.
So, I will pike and prod at patterns a bit and then call it a night.

Peace to all and may your Mondays treat you well and your soup stay where it is supposed to be.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

A "Restful" Weekend

Well, this weekend just flew by.

Yesterday was full of all kinds of chaos, not to mention he spending of a lot of money.

Let's see if I can remember the day's events in order, shall we?

So, first off it was get everyone up and moving early so we could get the LRH to the shop by 8.  Then it was grab some breakfast (I'm still not a McD's  fan...), drop Gak  off at work and then do laundry.  After  the laundry, it was over to bowling to meet up with Kat and Steph  and figure out the logistics  for the next part of the day.  This involved standing in the bitter cold and wind while loading 105 cases of Girl Scout cookies into Kat's car.  Then over to her place for grilled cheeses and tomato soup.  Steph and Billy were going up to Allentown, so picked up our other 4 cases of GF  cookies for us.

But, the day wasn't  over yet! At 2:00 it was go pay for the repairs, run through the grocery  store  for some food and then go get Gak from work.  Oh, and Boo is still at Kat's so, after picking up the red car and swinging by the apartment we still have to get a boy.

I go thud shortly after this point.

All I can say is that I'm very glad to have 2 functioning cars again.

Today we were supposed to go to Dragonhead  for Pathfinder.  Yesterday, Gak decided we needed a down day.  Especially  with how Boo has been recently.

Here's my version of a down day...

Get sourdough started at 9:30 or so the night before.
Mix and set sourdough for the first rise at about 7:00 or so in the morning after a lousy night's  sleep.
Fix some breakfast eventually and set the bread up for its second rise.
Start some chicken soup and bake the bread.
Try and nap from 11 until noon, but not really sleep.
Finish soup, including matzoh  balls by 1.  Take a shower in there as well.
Eat soup and bread for lunch.
Get the boys dressed so we can run to town to put gas in the grey  car and pick up the groceries I forgot yesterday.  Meanwhile, Gak takes Boo to try out PS3  controllers.
Come home.
Put away groceries.
Start making the chili  for dinner.
Play games with one or both boys.
Finish dinner.
Eat dinner.
Run a bath for a boy.
Play for a bit before sending a boy to bed.
Wonder what  happened  to  my restful day off.

Oh, and I'm ignoring the fact  that tomorrow  is supposed to  have crappie weather.....

So, peace to all and may you actually  have a peaceful day.