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Thursday, June 29, 2006
Pictures Which did not Make it into the Last Post!

Posted by Becky at 1:15 AM EDT
Wednesday, June 28, 2006
Too Busy for our own good.
Now Playing: Leroy & Stitch for the kids in the next room
Topic: Family Business

The conspicuous consumption bug bit me again today,
We had to go to town to get miss 16's learners permit, we drove all the way there, (it's 25 miles easy, nothing's close to anything else here- I like it that way usualy) parked in a primo spot, after staring down a state trooper on his way into the parking lot too. went to get out of the car & I said to miss 16, 'where's your papers'
'what papers?' she says.
'birth certificate, something with your name & address on it that was mailed to you, the usual identification stuff?'
'you mean you don't have them?' She wails this last, the state trooper is staring now, the little ones are skipping about the parking lot.
'well, it's your permit, I thought you had everything ready to go!' I say getting defensive, I know when I went to take my learners permit test & my liscence test I was in charge of all my paperwork & everything else.
'duh mom, how would I know where to find that stuff'
I just sat there & laughed, after all, what else can you do? there was no sense in getting mad, it never even crossed my mind when we were getting ready to go to town, not even to a point where I actualy thought of her locating her birth certificate & having it ready to go, it wasn't until we actually got to the dmv that I thought of it. At first I wanted to just come back on Saturday but the dmv is only open 8-12 on Saturdays & none of us are any good at getting up early on the weekends & I'm not that into getting up & going to town as if I was going to work on a non-work day. My next days off after Saturday are the 4th of July holiday so that's out & then the next Saturday I have to work to swap with myself a day of my vacation & on the 10th we leave on vacation so if we were going to get this learners permit thing done it had to be today. So when she said 'nooo' in that whiny tone she uses so well I just said 'fine, we'll go get the damn papers & come back'. so all the way back home we drove to get the birth certificate. It turned out there is no way 16 could have had the stuff she needed because it wasn't in her baby book like it should have been, it ended up being tucked away in my file cabinet in the child support paperwork because I had to show proof of birth/parentage when I went for custody & child support. it took me nearly 1/2 an hour to find it myself & I would NOT have wanted miss 16 all up in my important paperwork. Then we had the loveley drive all the way back to the dmv we went, most of the way back in to C'burg Chrissie text messaged & said she was in C'burg & did we want to meet her for lunch. I texted back to tell her what had happened & then again when we got into town & she then said it was too close to her work time so we missed that opportunity.
16 did better than previously on the learners permit test, she did not, however, do well enough to pass. She says that a lot of her friends have done better taking the test on paper rather than on the touch screens on the computers there. We settled for a picture id (she likes it because the border at the top is purple, her favorite color, rather than blue like a liscence or learners permit)
After that everyone was VERY hungry, so we went to lunch in B'burg which is a college town nearby, at a resturant called Backstreets which has a nice patio for dining on which I love to sit on. This led to the second altercation between 16 & I because she wanted to eat inside with the air conditioner & I wanted to be outside in the sunshine, I won because the little ones voted with me! we had a lovely lunch, we were able to jolly miss 16 out of her sulk & there was nearly no fighting for once. More than I can say for the current moment in time. Backstreets is known for pizza but 16 didn't want that so we all had sandwiches, Mr 6's hamburger was nearly as big as he was, 16 had an italian sub, 10 had a turkey & cheese & had a greek calzone which was excellent.
Then my other reason to come to town kicked in, we scoured the second hand clothing shops for a few new clothes for the trip to Mass. Only mr 6 got much I'm afraid to say, I forgot to mention we ran into a friend/family member at the dmv who has a daughter a little older than miss 10 & she reminded me she has a ton of clothes for 10 so I wasn't really looking for stuff for her, she did get a skip it & a pogo stick however & 1 pair of shorts & a shrug which was just the right green for her & a really soft knit material. 16 is just too picky, we went to goodwill, TJ Maxx, Rugged wearhouse & Target looking for a bathing suit for her & none of them were good enough. she did find a couple of skirts she liked at least. I found almost nothing for myself, the goodwill in our area has only in the past year or so set up a plus size rack, before that shopping there was an exersize in frustration, I'd have to paw through all this stuff which would never fit me & it was very frustrating to see things which were beautiful prints or colors or styles which would never fit me. Now I can shop for both 16 & I on the same double rack of clothes but I only find a few things each time. I found 1 shirt I liked pretty well but it's a long sleeved shirt & I needed summer things, at $3.50 a shirt I bought it anyway, I'll need it in the fall I'm sure. but I was really hoping to find something new for work & for the vacation. Luckily Lane Bryant's clearance racks were full, out of 5 shirts I bought there only one turned out badly, it was just a little too small. It looks good on 16 though, a little too big for her but it's always nice to have a few extra things to wear!
Target was our downfall (it always is, I love their stuff, especially the housewares department) I got a grill for the 4th of July, (I have had steak in my freezer for shish kabobs since Chrissie came down in April & no grill to cook them on!)& charcoal for the grill. then I couldn't resist some pretty summer lights for the porch, on clearance sale which is always a nice thing. I love those little orange clearance tags!
Home & showered & ready for bed (at least I am, kids are still all over the place, playing with their goodwill finds (bug kits & these odd building toys with plastic bolts to hold them together) & watching tv. Time to raise the roof & send everyone to bed so I can go myself!

Posted by Becky at 9:47 PM EDT
Updated: Thursday, June 29, 2006 12:51 AM EDT
Tuesday, June 27, 2006
What am I thinking?

I'm thinking about all the rain & the rivers, streams, creeks & brooks which are making themselves known all around the area, I'm thinking about the water I drove through on the way home last night & on the way back to work this morning & then again tonight on my way home & still trying to figure out how even though it was raining most of the day there was less water in the fields & creeks on my way home than there was when I was driving to work this morning. I'm thinking about how it's supposed to rain again tommorow (I think, still haven't watched the news) & how I get to drive around with the kids & check out how swollen the rivers are.
I'm thinking miss 16 is a weirdo because when I suggested we go to the DMV on Wednesday & try for her learners permit again her reaction was 'oh, ok, I neguess so' even though she needs to have the id for her trip to the boyfriends house in KY this August (if it happens) When I was a teenager I couldn't wait to drive, I was at the registry like, the day after I was of legal age & I was hounding my parents every time we even went near the car after that 'I'll drive, let me drive, let's go for a drive' I'd say. the last time she even touched a steering wheel it was in my last car which was an automatic & she was about 13. I can not understand not having that motivation to go, go go! as a teenager.
I'm thinking some people who are under 16 should be in bed & that the whole it's summer, no bedtime idea should be scrapped before I lose my mind. Also I think that certain people should sleep in their own beds not on the couch or with me when I'm off from work, Mommy needs her private time even if miss 10 doesn't.
I'm also thinking that mr 6 going on 7 needs a vcr of his own for his birthday because the one he's had on loan from Chrissie has started eating video tapes, he wasn't too upset about Sleeping Beauty but then it ate Thomas & the Magic Railway & I thought the tears were never going to stop, yes, I know he's almost 7. But he's a Cancer & he really cares.
I'm thinking about the upcoming vacation & how I can't wait but am also a little worried about how I'm going to get everything done before we leave, I've also got to work 5 straight days, 10 hours each day. I will be ready for a vacation when that's over (or maybe the nuthouse) I'm thinking that it's just as well that the plan for us to leave after I get out of work on the 10th from my work had to be scrapped because Chrissie will likely be at work & not able to bring the kids to meet me. I'm thinking I'll need at least a couple of hours of sleep before we embark because the whirlwind trip to Mass on father's day weekend taught me that I am not as young as I once was & that I do need sleep & to rest before driving long distances.
I'm thinking of my ex's new wife who emailed me today because she wasn't sure of the kid's birthdays & wanted to send them cards for the birthdays, I'm pleased that she cares enough to do so but I'm still stuck wondering what kind of a father doesn't at least make an effort to write down his kid's birthdays so he knows what days they're on & since he's allegedly overseas wouldn't it make sense to leave that info with his wife here in the country so she could make sure the kids got remembered?
I'm also thinking the June birthday girl had a great birthday even with out dad's help & did not go wanting at all so why not just look at a card from dad & new wife as gravy on top of the great time we had? & that the same will go for the July Birthday boy except that since we'll be in Mass for his actual birthday the presents & cake at home with the immediate family thing will be a little postponed. (I am not about to try to do that up there, we'll do it after the first paycheck in August)
I'm thinking about work & how there's even more of us on the New computer program & how everyone who's got to deal with this new program goes around with the same look of slightly nauseated disbeleif, it seems to say: "O M G do I really have to deal with this crazy stuff, as if the customers weren't enough craziness now I have to relearn everything I know about how to do my job?" I'm thinking that after 6 weeks on the new system I'd still rather be on the old one.
(3 paragraphs of anti new computer system, anti management & general paranoia about my job deleted to prevent my losing said job!)
I'm thinking that I need to cut back on the caffeine & get a little more sleep because everything is beginning to look like a conspiracy & I do have to get up at a reasonable hour tommorow & have my oil changed & a tire with a slow leak looked at & hopefuly patched. (not likely, everything on that car is over $100. no matter what it is, it's a hundred bucks!) but man we look stylin goin' down the road right?

Posted by Becky at 12:20 AM EDT
Sunday, June 25, 2006
Five Fives, for the 25th (with apologies to a few different blogs I've seen this on, some with different questions)
Topic: Stuff & Nonsense

5 Items in my fridge:
1. Ice cream I was conned into buying because it was 'buy 1 get 1 free mom, it's a good deal'
2. Enough Diet Coke to have the Nutrasweet sensitive twitching
3. Leftover Tuna which has too much paprika for anyone but miss 16
4. Vidalia Onions I bought because someone told me there was fresh french bread at home but then they ate it all before I got there!
5. Jars of Pickle juice because the kids can't stop eating pickles

5 Items in my closet:
1. My Clothes, loosely organized by shirts, dresses, skirts & season.
2. My son's clothes because it's a double closet, in his room & we share.
3. Fisher Price toys, like the castle, house, parking garage, from the 70's yes, the ones with the people kids can choke on & neither I, my brother, 2 younger cousins who inherited the toys & then gave them back or any of my 3 kids ever did choke on them.
4. A box full of Winter & Larger clothes for my son which I buy cheap at yard sales & goodwill & keep until he needs them.
5. Boots which I rarely wear.

5 Items in my car:
1. One of those flashlights you shake up which never needs batteries
2. Too many cds & tapes
3. A couple of books in case I'm bored
4. The Beaded hanger for a crystal I had hanging in my car, about a year ago the crystal broke off & I have yet to buy annother crystal or find time to bead one I already have.
5. At least 10 matchbox cars & 3 abandoned purses.

5 Items in my purse:
1. All last months bills.
2. Pictures of everybody.
3. 4 pens because there's never enough.
4. Valerian Root, St Johnswort, Multivitamins, asprin.
5. 6 different kinds of moisturizer.

5 Items in my Medicine Cabinet
1. Band-aids in a metal box
2. A Deodorant stone
3. Chemical Skin peel which turns me red & does not much else!
4. 4 kinds of toothpaste.
5. Asprin, Advil & Goodys Headache powders.

Posted by Becky at 12:01 AM EDT
Saturday, June 24, 2006
CRASH!!!! bang, smash, tinkle tinkle tinkle, (computer & Internet both falling apart)
Now Playing: Roll With the Changes by REO Speedwagon.

<<<< THIS is why I'm upset
Ok, Damnit, I know when I'm not wanted.
first I come home & after a nice hour or so playing Clue with the kids (even miss 16 unbent long enough for 2 games)I went to use the computer for a little while & found that all my bookmarks & my skin on mozilla is completely gone, all of it, after an hour of going from place to place collecting urls (I need to email this list to myself) I'm finaly ready to sit down & do something other than click & Bookmark. & my internet connection goes down, yes this is being written in notebook & I am not a happy camper, I know it's probably my own damn fault, I'm the one who keeps loading songs on my hard drive. (& I can't figure out how to take them off again when one duplicates - don't know why it's doing that either!)
It's raining & it's raining hard I admit. I use satellite internet & I've never had a problem before tonight (though I've had a complaint from 16 a couple of times during heavy thunderstorms before) After all, I spend my time at work telling people to be patient, wait for the weather to pass & try their tv later (stupid people, I think while at work, don't they know there's a whole world out there besides the tv, why don't they just do something else?) yes, yes, this is karmic, I know it, Well damnit, I want my internet!!
Country living is such a lovely thing until something goes wrong, I'm really not that upset, I would have been if I hadn't just about finished putting back everything which was lost in the computer crash when the internet went out, (funny how anytime I lose stuff it's always only part of it, sometimes the screen saver & the images, sometimes just the skin, sometimes all my saved music downloaded from other places.)
AAHH, much better, after about an hour & a half of torrential downpours I have my internet back...
Busy Saturday coming up tommorow. Payday week & the cupboard is bare, so we'll be busy all day running around getting things we're out of, I'll be bitching about the cost undoubtedly & sweating how much I spend in light of the vacation we're embarking upon 2 weeks from Monday. (is it really that soon?) the kid's will (as always) be having a heavy case of the "I want's" & since one just had a birthday & annother's is on 7/14, I'll be "so Mean" & saying no all the way through every store. I can already see this will be one of those Saturdays that will make me glad to go back to work on Sunday!
I actualy am beginning to prefer the non-pay weeks which allow us to do something other than grocery shop etc. Not enough, mind you, to go do the shopping on my own on the way home from work at night, anyway, miss 16 is so much of a control freak she'd probably lose her mind if she couldn't tell me what to buy for her to snack on! Then there's the part where she seems to think I Need her guidance in the shopping, I often question her as to just how she thinks I functioned for the 30+ years before she became a teenager & 'taught me everything I know' I also ask how she thinks I managed to keep her alive all those years between birth & 12 or so. This does not do me any favors in the speaking to each other categorys but it does often, buy me a few hours peace with the littler ones! Happy Weekend!

Posted by Becky at 12:32 AM EDT
Friday, June 23, 2006
46 Questions you wouldn't think to ask.... But Ann would though.
Topic: Stuff & Nonsense
1. Have you ever been searched by the cops?
Only at Rock Concerts they do a pat down most times

2. Do you close your eyes on roller coasters ?

3. When was the last time you've been sledding?
A few years ago. we get so little snow & it never lasts long, probably winter of 97.

4. Would you rather sleep with someone else, or alone?
Alone has it's benefits, like the middle of the bed. It took me almost 2 years to get used to it though.

6. Do you consider yourself creative?

7. Do you think O.J. killed his wife?

8. Carmen Electra or Jenna Jameson?
? Carmen Electra can at least talk so that's something right?

9. Do you totally dislike someone right now?
Hmm, do I have to actually know them to dislike them? I can think of a few people who I have talked with on the phone at work who were really uneccesarily rude & unpleasant that I dislike.

10. Do you know how to play poker?
Yes- played with my father & brother for years.

11. Have you ever been awake for 48 hours straight?
Yes, many times, this past weekend felt like 48 hours straight, I slept about an hour on friday night 3 hours saturday night & 3 hours in the car on the way home. All of that 'sleep' was a light doze at best.

12. Have you ever cheated on a test?

13. Who was your first crush?
Jonathan Hall from sunday school

14. If you're driving in the middle of the night, and no one is around would you run a red light?
Yep- been there done that.

15. Do you have a secret that no one knows but you?
Yes, a few.
16. Boston Red Sox or New York Yankees?
well I hate baseball so my answer has no real meaning, I was brought up by my mother & grandmother to like the yankess, but my father was a redsox fan & I find myself rooting for them in his memory if you can call it rooting when I happen to be in the breakroom at work & see the scores on tv as I'm sitting there & I am pleased it the sox are doing well- that's as far as it ever goes for me I'm afraid.

17. Have you ever been ice skating?
Oh yes, too many times to count

18. How often do you remember your dreams?
I only dream vividly for about a week each month, right around the new moon for some reason & that's about the only time I remember the dreams.

19. When was the last time you laughed so hard you cried?
I laugh like that with the kids all the time.

20. Can you name 4 songs by The Beatles?
Eleanor Rigby
Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds
Dear Prudence
Here Comes the Sun

21. What's the one thing on your mind?
my shoulder hurts & I want it to stop permanently.

22. Do you believe in love at first sight?
yeah, it's happened to me.

23. Do you know who Ba-Ba-Booey is?
not a clue.

24. Do you always wear your seat belt?
Only in the daylight when the cops can see me, (they're trying to make it legal for them to stop you in Virginia just for not having the seatbelt on)

25. What talent do you wish you had?
I bet my kids would prefer that I could sing. for my own personal preference some convenient esp would do nicely.

26. Do you like Sushi?
27. Have you ever narrowly avoided a fatal accident?
I rolled a mercedes at 19, if it had been any other car I would've been dead.
28. What do you wear to sleep?
Nightgowns, My ex insisted I start when my son was born becuase he thought it would be bad for the boy to chance seeing his mother naked & I got in the habit & haven't stopped.

29. Left?
I've been left, I'm on the political left. I'm not a lefty though with my right shoulder in pain I'm using my left hand a lot right now.

30. Does size matter?
My feet are at the outer limit of womens shoe sizes, in that case size matters incredibly. My dress size matters it's too large.

32. Rock or Rap?

34. Do you know anyone in jail?
Not currently but I did a few weekends ago!

35. Have you ever sang in front of the mirror?
Probably as a teenager, I'm more of a steering wheel singer though.

36. What food do you find disgusting?
Peanut Butter.

37. Have you ever made fun of your friends behind their back?
Not friends, aquaintances & co-workers though, watch out!

39. Have you ever stood up for someone you hardly knew?
Not really, I don't much stand up at all, I'm pretty shy.

40. Have you ever been punched in the face?

41. Who was the last person you slow danced with?
Well, I got married in 1993, my kids tell me on the video tape of the reception has us dancing, I guess that would be the last time.

42. Do you own any stuffed animals?
A snoopy which was 10's when she was a baby & a worn out stuffed dog which I had when I was a baby.

43. When was the last time you tripped?
Just the other day going into work (I'm assuming we're using the proper usage of the word, the improper would take me back to 1987)

44. Do you have a major crush on anyone?
Nope, but I have a couple of smiling nods I enjoy every day I work.

46. Do you miss someone right now?
Miss all my friends & family in Mass, Miss in the glad he's not here way, the ex.

Posted by Becky at 12:01 AM EDT
Thursday, June 22, 2006
13 Places I'd Like to visit & why (NOT in any particular order)
Topic: Thursday Thirteen

1 United Kingdom (all of it, Scotland, Ireland & Wales too)
2 California (the Winchester Mystery house is much higher on my list than Hollywood)
3 Arizona (My friend Jennie lives there & I'd love to have her show me around)
4 Mexico (sounds like fun & it's cheap right?)
5 Aruba (never been to any of the islands)
6 New York City (with money to do it right)
7 Marthas Vineyard (I'm from Mass but it's too pricey for me)
8 Oregon, (I wanna look for bigfoot!)

9 Alaska (I'm beginning to think that's where I should retire in order to maintain the space I like between myself & others- that's 1 reason I moved here but it's getting more crowded all the time)
10 Hawai (well, of course!)
11 France (I've read too much to not at least go see it!)
12 On top of Buffalo Mountain, I've been here for nearly 10 years straight & annother 4 years off & on & have yet to go to the top - or anywhere near it for that matter!)
13 New England (Not just our half assed, broke way we do every year, but a no holds barred, wherever we want to go, do anything we want sort of trip! Like in winter with a week skiing at Waterville Valley NH or Bedford VT!)

Posted by Becky at 12:01 AM EDT
Tuesday, June 20, 2006
Annother Crazy week,
Now Playing: Too Much Time on My Hands by Styx (exact opposite of my life)

It has been Crazy since I had time to sit down & write, I have been healing my lungs from their cough by not talking & drinking a ton of water (carrying 3 1 liter bottles to work every day all last week) It's. helping a bit, my garden is getting greener, unfortunatley that is because the weeds are encroaching! The tomatoes looked tall though, (I haven't had the time to actually go & look at them up close just out my back door's window so far) Friday I did my day at work & then took off with Chrissea on a whirlwind trip to Massachusetts & back, read about it on her blog here. Got back Sunday night barely with time to take a shower & get some sleep before back to work on Monday (called in sick Sunday from Mass) During all this my right shoulder is messed up, I slept on it wrong Thursday night, then sleeping for an hour or 2 in the car Friday night didn't help, Saturday it was stiff & sore but not too bad, then we moved Chris's stuff out of her apartment & it really took off. I couldn't move my arm above shoulder level with out serious pain. It did not get better between Sunday morning & coming home, typing at work was an ordeal & then today I had promised to take the kids swimming at a local campground which has a pool with a reasonable charge for non campers to use it. we had a great time, then went out for pizza & finaly to a drug store where I got some Icy Hot type stuff & a couple of hot compress things to try to relieve my shoulder, a co worker who used to be a cna said I may have torn my rotor cuff but the fact that it gets better with Icy hot & was also pretty loose in the pool water makes me think it's muscles not the joint.
As long as it's gone by july when we go on vacation I don't really mind, Of course the other thought, as I wince while raising my right arm to the keyboard to type I hope its not carpal tunnal syndrome! of course it's the shoulder & carpal tunnal is usualy in the hands & wrists, I had a boss once who had been a fry cook most of his life & had to retire due to this & for the last 6 months I worked with him I watched him just stand around & look at his hands & flex them as if he couldn't belive they'd betray him so. Also my jobs as a clothing inspector & now typing 40+ hours a week aren't good for that sort of thing. The Swimming went well, the kids had a blast & all jumped in the pools before I could get sunblock on them, I hauled them back out after a half an hour or so & put the sunblock on but I can see now that the damage was already done! everyone's bright red (except me- I have the sense to apply early & often!) It's not my fault no one listens to me & they end up bright red like lobsters, I've been there so many times myself. It was like a ritual to run away from my mother when it came time for the sunblock applying.

Back in the 70's we had only the one 'block out' sunblock. I actually liked the smell at least, I just didn't want to stand still that long! Now I have moles that I have to check at least every 6 months to make sure they haven't changed color or gotten larger! & my kids are just like I was, maybe a little worse? What with their fathers hyper-activity & all. They see the pool & they're off, 'what sun? we don't need sunblock, see, it's cloudy right now' (for about 3 minutes as a fluffy cloud passes over!)
All in all it has been a busy week & I'm glad I don't have to go any further than town tommorow. I just want to rest & weed the garden in preparation for the vacation coming up in July, 3 weeks from yesterday is the date we leave!

Posted by Becky at 10:03 PM EDT
Thursday, June 15, 2006
Thirteen Things about my 10 year old in honor of her birthday on June 11.
Topic: Thursday Thirteen

1 She could not sit still to be read to or even watch a tv show untill she
was about 6 or 7.
2 She does not see well due to a lazy eye & She does not like her glasses
3 When she was born The Stanley cup final playoff game was on (this was
1996 & it went into multiple sudden death overtimes) my ex watched this
while I walked around. when I said it was time to go to the hospital he
kept saying, 'ok, just wait annother minute, it's gotta end soon' finally
I said no, we have got to go NOW. she was born 10 minutes after we arrived
at the hospital & my ex saw the end of that game 5 years later on espn
4 If she could have seen better she would have beaten her brother's 8
months walking record. As it was she still walked at 10 months,
5 She is stubborn as the day is long
6 She suffers from middle child syndrome & will tell you so in so many words
7 She is going to be the one who gives me a run for the money during the
teenage years. as if she wasn't already a challenge
8 She is sweet as pie when all is going her way but don't do what she
wants or worse yet cross her & watch out!
9 She's going to be a beauty
10 She has 4 scars on her face, 2 seperate ones from the same dog (my ex
wasn't home the first time the dog knocked her down & scratched her & he
insisted the dog couldn't have done it- the next time she had to have 9
stitches in her temple & 1 in the corner of her lip. Dog did not stay
annother day in our house thank god.) she also has a lovely scar on her
lip from her sister throwing a vaseline jar at her (don't ask)
11 She always wants to be right in the middle of things, dosen't matter
what things they are, I can be online reading & she begs to sleep on the couch as if she was worried she might miss something.
12 She always want's to be helpful when I'm doing things she always comes
right over & pitches in. After a few minute if it's not her cup of tea
she'll just say flat out: I'm done with this, see ya.
13 She likes to read a lot so far.

Posted by Becky at 12:01 AM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, June 21, 2006 11:21 PM EDT
Wednesday, June 14, 2006

What Famous Leader Are You?
personality tests by similarminds.com

Posted by Becky at 4:59 PM EDT
Sunday, June 11, 2006
Home again
Now Playing: Can't find My way Home by Blind Faith
Topic: Rambling on

{{{{The Birthday girl
It's always fun to roll up on my house when the kids don't expect me home. on a normal day they have a good idea of when I'll show up & they always strive (or miss 16 & miss 10 do anyway) to make it look as if they've been cleaning up all day. But I know better & days like this when I come home sick (or like last year when they were sending us home an hour or 2 early every few days) are always amusing. They come to the door & windows & stare at me like I'm some interloper & then go running around like crazy trying to pick up everything - today they sent their brother out to the car to stall me. this didn't work because it was 4:15 pm & he was schlepping around in his sisters outgrown long sleeved shirt & a pair of pajama pants with a big hole in a very inconvenient spot! we had a 3 minute discussion about exactly why he was wearing what he was wearing (I have never known anyone with more shrugs to his name, he has a shrug for every occasion & they all say something different to me!- this one said 'It seemed like a good idea at the time' as near as I could make out)
& off to the house we went, people were running around frantically behind the door, throwing dirty laundry here there & everywhere, dishes were being rushed from the coffee table in the living room & the dining room table to the sink, alas there they still sit, once busted, 16 seems to think she's done & is absolved of all responsibillity for everything which did not get done. At dinner time miss 10 came to me to ask what was for dinner & I told her to go check with the person in charge. (I was lying down, trying to rest my voice & throat at the time- fat chance in this house!) Miss 16 was very offended at this comment, I got the standard "Mom, you're here, I'm not in charge" screech when her sister told her dinner was on her tonight. "just pretend I'm not here" I told her which she responded to by growling in that charming way 16 year olds can.
Dinner got made though, I'm bowing out of it because somehow either the juciyness in my lungs is working it's way down or I've caught some other sort of nasty bug & my stomach is terribly unsettled this evening.
There are nice things about being home though, the not working part is nice right now especially since work is an exersize in frustration (we released info on our website which is misleading & I spent the majority of the 5 & 1/2 hours I did work verbally sparring with people who think because they watch tv shows with lawyers on them that they're every bit as good as those tv lawyers) We'll see how the missing work feels when the paycheck comes in though, that's not always so great. Also it's nice to relax with the kids (not 16, she's got friends over, school ended 6/1 & she's making the most of it- 'I'll never be 16 again, you know mom!' yes, we can hope not anyway) Especially since today is the day miss 10 became miss 10 rather than miss 9. Party to follow on my next real day off- Tuesday. It's all about her today, she got to sit on the couch, pet the dog first & tell me all about the cartoons they watched this morning.
In other news we replaced 16's cell phone again, you'd think we'd learn, buy from ebay once & have a bad experience, don't do it again. But no, she was shopping & found 'the phone' (cue: choir of angels)so I put it on the beleagured credit card & 7 days later (2-3 day shipping my eye) it appeared, then the nice people on the phone from the cell phone company said that it wasn't theirs. So I had to take it to their office & they were able to activate it but now it says it's roaming every time she tries to use it to call out. very interesting, if it's not the correct companys phone that roaming thing is exactly the sort of thing the phone would do. I do not have the patientice to talk to their technical support people tonight though, after all, that's what I left work to escape, stupid people trying to troubleshoot themselves & messing things up worse than they were before they started! At least I know enough to admit that I know nothing when it comes to cell phones & leave it alone since I'm not feeling up to it right now!

Posted by Becky at 8:41 PM EDT
Saturday, June 10, 2006
Do you have to count it at all?
Now Playing: Tesla Song & Emotion

I was looking at other peoples blogs tonight, as good a reason as any to not be folding clothes, weeding the garden or even blogging. & I noticed a few people celebrating their 100th entry or their 200th etc. for a few minutes I wondered how anal they could be, if they'd sat there & counted how many they'd done or what, then when I actually came around to put an entry on here I found the blog tool does it for you, this is my 61st entry. I think, I deal with too many numbers in a day to hold one in my head for more than a few minutes unless I'm making a special effort to hold it- yet I still remember all the phone #s I've had & most of my childhood friends phone #s from when we were kids- not since, they've all had too many different #s for me to be able to keep track {Hi Chrissie!} scary though, these numbers just pop out at random but I can't remember how many calls I took at work & if I logged them all or not (well, I do know today, because my boss wasn't there to tell me so I could check how many he said I took versus how many I logged so I could fill in the log with random calls to look like I filled it out correctly for every call I took- I took 50 calls, not good, I averaged 65 before our computer program change)I prefer not to count anything, change, how many sodas I drank today, how many times I logged out at work to go to the bathroom because of all those sodas, how many times I've seen the dog chase the cat past my desk here or how many times one child or another has run past naked...hey, how did he come thru twice from the same direction? {yo! we don't go outside naked! You're 6 years old for heavens sake! I thought you knew this...} (& I wonder where those gray hairs are coming from!- yes annother thing I'd prefer not to count)
I like to count hours I don't have to be at work, paid days off & stupid coca cola rewards points from all those soda caps I'm saving off the sodas I'm drinking! Counting the days til my vacation is getting pretty exciting since in 10 more minutes it'll be 30 days. 16 had a counter on her my space site to count down the days until her boyfriend came for a visit maybe I need one of those? Nah, the kids'll keep me posted, they're already drawing big red X's over the days as we get through each one.
I was brought up anti grading, IQ testing etc. so of course as a teenager & young adult that interested me the most- I wanted to be tested, anyalized & pigenholed to the best of anyone's abillity. Even so, I still have never taken a 'real' IQ test, just the ones online. I find it hard to associate my children's grades with how they're actually doing, the younger ones are graded with #s, 1 being poor, 4 being excellent, miss 9 is going to be going into 4th grade this next year & they switch to a,b,c etc. grades that year, for which I will be profoundly grateful, I just can't get the # system, it all seems poor to me, I don't see what the difference between a 2 & a 3 is (there's this nagging evil 'dad' at the back of my head that says if it wasn't a 4 it just wasn't good enough too which I would love to silence) the numbers are just too random for me. they all passed their grades, 9 did ok, 6 did great. 16 did pretty well, she lets personality clashes with teachers affect her grades too much(I think) You might think this is some sort of dyscalculia, but it isn't I'm not afraid of or confused by numbers, I just would prefer not to think about them in regards to 'how I'm doing' My grandmother hates numbers so much that she can't stand to look at calendars & when we lived together would tell me when she wrote something on the calendar to verbally remind her a day or two before something came up because she just wouldn't be able to look at the calendar. She prefers not to know what time it is & constantly is late sending birthday & christmas cards, the time just gets away from her, understandable pushing 90 but 10-15 years ago a little worrysome, or at least so some of my family thought, I just thought of it as one of her odd things. Now I belive she has dyscalculia but she'd laugh if I brought it up to her.
Still, it all counts, how you do in school, how you do at work, it counts for you, it counts against you. All this petty little stuff like did you say 'thank you for calling' or 'thank you for choosing' or did you write the check before or after the money posted in the checking account. (when we all know it only matters if the check arrived at the bank before or after the money posted into the checking account!) The really important stuff like how many times you hugged your kid or how many stories you read to them when they were sick instead of sticking them in front of the tv or how many shooting stars you saw while lying outside on a summer night don't count like they should.

Posted by Becky at 12:24 AM EDT
Wednesday, June 7, 2006
Days off are more work than days at work
Now Playing: Finger Eleven One Thing

Just got back from a hike in Patrick County, ( more pictures are here I managed half the hike & let 16, her Boyfriend & Chris-sea's daughter finish it. miss 9 & mr 6 & I stayed in the primitive campsites & went wading in the river & met butterflies. They were mad at first that I wouldn't let them go on ahead on the hike but we had enough fun that they got over it pretty quickly. I am still sick- stuffed up & have a sore throat but my voice is nearly back to normal which is a good thing. I had to take both last Friday & Sunday off. (I already had Saturday off) I get in the same amount of trouble for taking 2 days off in the same block of time as if I took 1 so since Saturday began a different week & I couldn't talk any better Sunday morning than I could Friday morning I decided it was better to just rest my voice.
We've been to the river to swim (I stayed out of the water, my voice got noticeably worse after the last time we swam)To dinner at Kabukis & to town with 16's boyfriend who came in from Kentucky for a week's visit, today we not only went on the hike, we drove on the Parkway & enjoyed the views & also a bunch of old car enthusiasts from North Carolina were driving all over the parkway with their beautiful old cars. Driving my PT Cruiser around these 70's, 60's & 50's beauties made me feel like an impostor- 16 accused me of being more into the cars than the views, I have, of course, seen the views a thousand times & it's not every day you see a baby blue mint condition Corvair! my only complaint is that there were not enough Mustangs for my taste. All in all though, it was a lot of fun, the kids accuse me of never wanting to do anything like just drive around on the parkway anymore. The reason I used to do that sort of thing more before was the horror of our old trailer, if it got too much to bear or too hot, smelly or upsetting to look at we'd all pile in the car & drive around. Nowadays I'd rather be at home because I like home (except that it's a mess right now- with 7 people here that's no surprise!)I'd rather be at home than almost anywhere else & especially in my garden which is in need of some serious attention, all this showing around & sight seeing has kept me from it for a week now & tommorow I have to go back to work, (for 2 whole days - oh wah!! what a big baby I am, I've worked 5 in a row between days off previously & I know how good I've got it- really I do! Of course no matter how good it is it could always be better & I've got to go mess around in the garden before we go swiming or something else.

Posted by Becky at 4:53 PM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, June 7, 2006 5:02 PM EDT
Tuesday, May 30, 2006
I'm a million different people from one day to the next...
Now Playing: Bittersweet Symphony by The Verve
Topic: Rambling on

It's not funny how conflicted I can be with just general life...
On the one hand I hate learning this new computer system at work, it's cumbersome & agravating, because we're alpha testers theres glitches, bugs & stuff you just can't do.
On the other hand I'm flattered that they think so highly of us in my group that they put us on this - after all everyone will have to use it eventually, I'm just one of about 50 that are learning it early & making suggestions to the improvement of it.
I'm conflicted over what I'm going to do on my next two days off, I need to go get flats to get my vegetable garden under way. this is also my last two days off without the kids & I'd like to enjoy the peace & quiet while I have it. I'm conflicted over that too though, I feel guilty for savoring the peace so much I do love having the kids around - it's just a different feeling around the house & I can't spend as much time here in front of the computer!
It will be nice though, to be able to pick up & go out when I want to, just get the kids in the car & go, we'll be spending a bunch of time up on the parkway, hiking & picnicing. I hope to spend a lot of time around the house, in the garden, painting the rooms, rearranging & generaly getting more settled in the house (It was a year may 26 & it STILL doesn't seem real...I have to keep reminding myself on my way home from work where I'm going)
I'm conflicted about my weight & health problems, I'm craving chocolate almost constantly & I'm not supposed to be eating sugar, I do pretty well on work days about not eating it but when I'm home I have a lot of trouble restraining myself. Add to that the fact that because of my mother's & grandmothers history of high blood pressure, heart disease etc. I shouldn't be eating salt & fat either. That leaves very little, vegetables & fruits, lean meat like chicken & fish. That's about it & all that stuff unless you're talking about canned or frozen is expensive & I can't afford to feed everyone that stuff so I don't eat, just get frozen dinners for work & cheat my way through my days off.
I'm conflicted about the kids, I want them to be free & have their own opinions & be self sufficient but I can't not yell when their independent decisions don't include cleaning their rooms or bringing dirty laundry downstairs (& then being mad at me that they don't have any clean shorts on a hot day! I'd wash them if they were down here!) or the decision to watch tv all day is made & I refuse to allow it & make them go outside. (I'm sorry but I was constantly sent outside when I was a kid & I think having the option to explore the yard & later the woods behind my house made me a better, more attuned with nature person)
I am also conflicted about the money thing, I like making decent money & I'm thrilled that I've got a house to show for it & a decent car. But I dislike the work I do, I find it harder & harder to support the company line & I hate the verbal abuse heaped upon me by customers who feel like they've been done wrong. But then I credit my job -which wouldn't pay as much as it does if it wasn't as big a pain in the butt as it is- with all my success, I would not be where I am now with what I have now if I was still working 35 hours a week at the nursing home for $5.40 an hour (I'd probably be thinner though!)

Posted by Becky at 2:42 PM EDT
Sunday, May 28, 2006
Annother day in ConsumerLand
Now Playing: Hate Me By Blue October
Topic: Rambling on

I have never been able to just get what I needed. All my life from childhood on has been a struggle, it cost for shoes, it cost for coats, my parents would worry about how clothes, shoes etc would get paid for, often my grandmother bailed them out (she's done the same for me more often than I like to think of) Or, worse, we got hand me downs from people at my parents jobs, church etc. I hated that at the time but some of my favorite clothes at 8,9,10, were hand me downs, I just had to have them long enough to feel like they were mine instead of someone else's discards.
All the time my ex & I were together there was never enough money. It was a constant battle to keep everyone fed, clothed & a roof over our heads, he didn't work a lot of the time- he'd get a job, keep it for 6-10 weeks & quit or get fired for not showing up. I didn't work a lot of that time then too... But I had little kids at home, it was cheaper for me to stay at home with them than pay a babysitter, he wouldn't watch them, if I worked the kids were babysat. That was all there was to that. the ex could not/would not watch the kids while I worked for more than 2 days in a row. I don't know why he couldn't take it but he couldn't & so we were almost never a 2 income family. This meant that we were constantly broke. It did not help matters that we brought out the worst in each other in terms of money & spending. One of us would say: 'Man, I wish we could just go out to dinner tonight' & the other would say: 'well, we do have that money for the electric bill...' & off we'd go, we supported in each other the worst, most spendthrift behavior you can imagine! In that way we're much better off seperate. He still doesn't do much better at making ends meet to this day
The best thing about my job is that it pays enough. Enough that we have what we need & a few luxuries to boot... I've had to watch what I spend though, & I do love to spend unfortunately. As I said, my Grandmother has bailed me out & helped with the extras like shoes when people outgrow them too soon & she always has helped me with school supplies each August. For the most part though I manage - I do get a little from the ex each month now that he's in the service (allegedly- still don't belive it) & that little helps, but I know better than to count on it, if & when he leaves the service I doubt I'll continue to recieve any money, he's not too good at keeping up with things like that & he's also known to resent paying it, he feels because I was at home with the kids when they were babies & under 4 while he was working. That I 'owe' him & he shouldn't have to pay support. So I know that there is likely going to be a time when that $225. doesn't come in anymore & I hope to have the money thing going even better than it is now by then. Either that or I'll have to do more overtime at work than they're already forcing on us, (up to 4 hours mandatory every week & they're so desperate that they're paying double time for overtime over the mandatory 4!- I haven't done any of that but I might this week- because of the holiday weekend we have less hours available to do the overtime on -Sunday & Monday are closed up for available hours to work- So I'll have to go in on one of my days off to make the time up & if I'm going to be there for 3 hours I might as well be there for 4! especially considering it's a 40 minute drive each way.)
The point here was that I've finaly applied for & recieved a credit card. (a real one, not the secured type for like 300 bucks.) I belive that's the difference between the poor & the not so poor, everyone nowadays lives paycheck to paycheck I belive, but credit cards just make it easier. When someone needs something you can get it. I've been in the situation where we've gone out, got groceries for 2 weeks, had a meal out, like Burger King or something & then got home & someone's broken their shoe or spilled something uncleanable on their coat. There's no extra money in the bank, just enough for gas for me to go to work & back every day for the 2 weeks until the next paycheck & to buy milk & bread. There's no help for it but for the kid to deal with it with the credit card I could go get the shoes, or worse yet, the car breaks down, in the past that's always meant tearful phone calls home & money wired to me from my mother or grandmother who can't afford it any more than I can but at least have credit cards so they can help. Now I won't have to ask them for help, I'll be able to put a repair on the credit card. I'm still mulling over the whole pay all your bills with the credit card though, the commercials make it seem so easy, pay all your bills through auto pay with the credit card & then just pay the credit card bill each month - That way you don't have to think about it. But of course there's interest, you're paying more to pay your bills because of the interest rate on the credit card (a pretty good one on this card I have to say, at least 'til the end of the year)Someone pointed out though, that if you're paying the money you'd have paid the bills with, to the credit card company then you're paying over the minimum balance & thus would not be getting too bad of an interest rate or getting too behind on your debt. Of course if you're paying over the minimum payment routinely they're likely to increase your limit too!
Then of course I hear my father's voice on credit cards, how they're a slipery slope & you'll end up in debt to your eyeballs & be unable to pay it off. I also have had friends who did get into trouble, both my closest cousin & a former friend ended up in enough trouble with credit card debt that they had to have their money doled out to them & the payments for the cards automatically taken from their paychecks. There's never a decision in adulthood that's all good.. there's always too many pros & cons to everything!

Posted by Becky at 12:56 AM EDT

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