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Tuesday, January 16, 2007

It is done, the move is made, update your links- all 3 of you...lol... I'm here now & will be there from now on, I'm not going to move much over, because I can't take the comments with me & the comments are some of my favorite things!

Posted by Becky at 6:55 PM EST
Monday, January 8, 2007

Well the decision is made, I'm not going to mess around here any longer, within the week (probably by Saturday afternoon) I'm going to have my new blog up & running & as public as I'll ever be, I'm going to link it in this post, I've moved only the posts from 12/31 forward over there & while I intend to set up all my links & the important topics like the vacation etc. I know it'll take time. if you're curious to see here's the link.

Posted by Becky at 11:11 PM EST
Saturday, January 6, 2007
5 Years and 5 Things Ago?
Topic: Stuff & Nonsense

What were you doing 10 years ago?
  We still lived in Mass & I was mostly at home Taking care of miss 10 who was only 6 months old, at that time my ex ran an auto parts store & when someone would call him to see if he could get a special order part he'd call me & I'd drive to the warehouse to pick it up & have it there for the customer really quick, miss 10 would ride along with me on these jaunts most every afternoon in our ancient mustang which took forever to warm up enough so that I couldn't see my breath while driving.

5 years ago?
  Working the same job I work now but it was different then, more of a challenge & a lot less stressful, worrying, arguing with the ex by phone weekly.

One year ago?
  Working, Loving being in my new house,

  Working It sometimes seems like I'm always working

5 snacks you enjoy?
  Popcorn with Parmesan Cheese & onion powder sprinkled over it
  Barbara's Cheese Curls
  Cereal, Corn Chex in particular
  Doritos Ranch Flavor

5 songs I know all the words to?
Wish you were here by Incubus,
Gypsy Road by Cinderella
Ends by Everlast
Far Away by the Offspring
I Stay Away by Alice in Chains  

5 things you would do if you had 5 million dollars?
Build a really nice house
Go to a spa & have all my fat sucked out of me!
NOT work!

5 things you like doing?
Driving back roads to explore
Some tv watching
Internet, reading blogs etc

5 bad habits?
Not cleaning much
Eating too much
Wanting to do what I'm into to the exclusion of everything else

5 things I would never wear again?
High heels!
Mini skirts
Any perfume but my favorite
Colored Jeans
Skimpy tops

5 favorite toys?
My son's Imaginext build a castle sets (discontinued)
My Car
Dollhouse stuff (SOMEDAY, I'm going to get to make a nice one for ME)

Posted by Becky at 5:30 PM EST
Friday, January 5, 2007
Just a quick Catch up....
Now Playing: Loser by Beck
Topic: Family Business

It's odd that the schedule change I'm currently getting used to is making me feel so odd. After all, the month of December I was out of work more than I was there due to my Grandmother's death & sick kids earlier in the month. Heck, the whole last 6 months of the year I was constantly leaving early, arriving late or not coming into work at all. Mostly due to my frustration with our new computer system & the fact that it's made an already difficult job almost unbearable. 

   We also got word yesterday that they're going to start making us be more careful about logging into the computer on time in the morning & after lunch & logging out at night. & that there's an 80% chance that we'll have to change shifts, it's supposed to be a company wide thing so everyone has to 'bid' on the shifts they'd like to have & then by seniority & performance they'll assign the shifts, one thing in my favor, though I'm only in the second tier in performance (mostly because of my attendance) I have a lot of seniority & I like the 4 days on working for 10 hours a day shifts best & the majority of people don't care for those as much so I shouldn't have too much competition to get a 4x10, if the shift I'm currently on will still be available is annother story & no one is making any promises.

   Yesterday was frustrating enough in many ways that I came home saying I was going to start looking for a new job immediatley. By the time I'd written a little & talked to a friend I was calm enough to decide that I'll wait & see if they do make a shift shuffle & if they do what shift I get. (This is always assuming nothing else happens to piss me off in the near future) 

  On the way home I had to pull over for 2 police cars & when I got to the next little town (where I had to stop to pick up milk & a few other essentials) I could see the police cars about 1/8 of a mile away at a house, there were red lights of an ambulance or fire truck but I couldn't see any flames or smell any smoke. I went in the store & went about picking up the things I needed (some I wanted- the sugar shut down isn't going too well) & noticed the women behind the counter were at the door with it open looking out on the fracas down the street too. By the time I was ready to check out they were behind the counter again & discussing what was going on. They told me that it's rarely more than 5 minutes after anything happens in their town before they know about it due to being the only store open until 11 pm. & sure enough as I was finishing writing my check for the groceries (Day before payday you know, the only money I had is the money in limbo between direct deposit & the bank) The older store clerk looked out the window & said 'here comes F- he'll know what's going on!' when he walked in they asked him point blank & he did know, aparently a young mother of a 16 month old put the child in the bath & the phone rang, she went to answer for just a second & came back & the baby was under water. The rescue squad was able to revive the child though, he said & so we were all very relieved. 

I'm having a very bad week with drama like that, Wednesday I was approaching the highway on ramp & came upon an accident which had just  occoured, a large car, like a Lincoln or one of those other really big boats old people seem to drive around here had T-Boned a work truck. It was pretty awful looking & the police weren't there yet. I went through town so as not to drive through the scene of the accident to get onto the highway & then I called 911 on my cell phone, which I've never done before, they said they were aware of it & about a minute later police & an ambulance came flying past in the other direction. 

I have mixed emotions telling the last two blurbs there, on the one hand, I think my blog is boring because it's mostly either bitching about work or talking about the kids. I realize most people aren't all that interested in this stuff, so I'm trying to broaden out a little & put other things in here. On the other hand, as I've mentioned before my ex was on the rescue squad & was not supposed to talk about what he saw or what happened to people  he had to treat to me or anyone else, of course he did tell me a lot of things, I've never repeated any of them to anyone. (though since this was in 1998 & 1999 I'm pretty sure the statute of limitations has expired or will soon)  I kind of feel like both of these things, the accident I saw the aftermath of & that little child underwater & having to be revived are similar, that it's an invasion of the peoples privacy for me to talk about them. 

  Ok, well enough of that depressing stuff. the kids are ok, no one's killed anyone else yet though the death threats to each other continue daily. Miss 16 says she's sick, she said she was sick Wednesday & wanted me to come get her, I was already nearly at work & told her if she felt really bad to have the high school office call my work & I'd come, but I really can't afford too many more absecences from work! So she stuck it out & stayed home Thursday,

  I don't think she's too sick, she put all my Christmas decorations away for me (I called just as she was starting to take down the outside lights & stopped her, I like to have them lit at night at least through epiphany or little Christmas, though I'm not Catholic I grew up in a town which was manily catholic & seem to have adopted a lot of their traditions. I was mulling this over on the ride home from work as I was noticing how few people still are turning their Christmas lights on at night & it's not even a week since New Years! 

  So when I arrived home after the stop at the nosy store I found mail waiting for me from my younger kids' school  they stuffed both notices in the same envelope & the point was that they've been out too much. Never mind that the absences are excused, 2 with a doctors note & 4 due to the funeral in December which I wasn't about to miss. My Grandmother was like a mother to me in a thousand ways & in many ways more of a mother than my mother was. She & my mother are the only people I would drive that far to pay my respects to. (though, if it was the ex I guess I'd have to take the kids) & I am not about to have the school 'for shame' me over taking my kids to a funeral. Kids need to learn about death & the earlier the better I think, because then they can incorporate it into their lives as a perfectly normal part of life instead of some alien, terrible concept as some see it.

  Ok, yeah I've had to deal with a lot of deaths & have some pretty strong ideas about it. Whew, take a breath Becky, ok, so I was more than a little annoyed with the school about it & I'm really glad I didn't see this until 9pm because if anyone had been at the school to call & bitch at I certainly would have. As it was I had the evening to de-stress & the night to sleep on it & so I called the school this morning & they told me I had to come in & sign a paper that says I understand they need to be there every day & pledge to make sure they are there every day. So I did that & came back here & have been browsing blogs & Im'ing with a friend since then! Boring huh?  

  I had more to say but I have to get ready to take the kids & go grocery shopping & on our every other week outing together. (used to be Saturday during the day, with the Friday, Saturday, Tuesday off schedule change we're going to do it Friday nights so as to have a nice, quiet relaxing day Saturday) Yeah, that'll happen.

Posted by Becky at 2:59 PM EST
Wednesday, January 3, 2007
Saw This on Someone else's blog today & thought it was pretty cool!
Topic: Stuff & Nonsense

The first line from the first post for each month of last year, (starting in February since I didn't start blogging until February)

February   100 things about me
100- I'm Fat, I've been fat my whole life excluding ages 18 to 21 & it's only a big deal when it keeps me from doing something I want to do.

March  It Could always be worse.....it was not the worst day I've ever had, it wasn't among my best though. I didn't lose my temper at anyone on the phone & I only remember shaking my middle finger at the computer screen during 3 or 4 calls today! over the course of 55-60 calls in a day that's pretty good, for me.

April I left work early back on Friday, I was feeling Ill & on top of that my ex's threatened visit was really putting me into a tailspin. My house is a mess, my yard is a mess, I'm broke, I have broken windows & can't figure out how to take the boards that hold the windows in their frames off to take the windows out & repair them

May I was reading annother Local blog which had an entry about people coming from other areas, thinking this was a good place to settle & on the
considerations they should take under advisement,

June   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.

July  I'm not going to pretend I did anything of great importance today, I would have liked to but then I'm a boring person in general & I'm boring enough to say at least I acomplished most of what I set out for myself.

August  Its hard getting back in the swing of things after being on vacation, it's even odder when barely a week after getting home you're off again. Tuesday of this week we drove to Kentucky to take miss 16 to a friends house

September   If everybody is happy doing their own thing why do I feel guilty that I've been wasting the whole day looking at silly stuff on my computer? All three kids are busy with their own pursuits, no one has asked me to do anything which I've said no to because I'm absorbed in the computer, but yet, I still feel guilty for being on here just messing around-

October  I've been online for over an hour just reading other peoples blogs etc. & it seems everyone has so much more of a life, so many more links to interesting & funny & beautiful things.

November  Halloween is over & it's back to the grind, Last night was fun, not spectacular, I was actually rather disapointed in my company's halloween setup, there were some stand out parts, the IT department in particular stands out - the little ones actually got tentative & jumped when the scare came- something I would have doubted would happen any longer.

 December I was at work this morning struggling to make it to the halfway point in the day so I could go home sick & I got a text message from miss 16 who was home from school with the diareah & vomiting I was struggling against while at work. The text said 'yeah, I just almost died'.

Posted by Becky at 12:01 AM EST
Tuesday, January 2, 2007
This would have been better if Tripod had been working earlier!
Now Playing: Ends by Everlast
Topic: just letting off steam

   I'm feeling pretty lost without my blog today, it's currently out, the whole tripod organization seems to have dropped off the face of the world wide web. I admit I rarely look at info on the tripod home site so maybe this is planned maintenance & I just wasn't paying attention, there's never a good time for maintenance but a Tuesday since 1030 am? (It's currently quarter to 3pm) It's making me look at other blogs, I was shocked at how hard it is to put a picture on blogger! I couldn't even get a picture on my profile (Which I have for people who do blogger blogs & insist on only blogger profiled people commenting) I was thinking about beginning a blog there but I love my pictures, I think it's really boring to read blogs without pictures. Tripod may not have the most spectacular layouts (though I love mine since it's teal) but I can post tons of pictures easily!
  Of course, from the looks of this I wouldn't really be doing any monumentous blogging anyway. I'm just sitting here running random thoughts,
  I've been looking at my addiction to the computer with new eyes, the day before new years my bookmarks all disapeared & I'm slowly getting them back, not all of them though, many are lost & not coming back it's not exactly a bad thing, I think an enforced clean out can be useful & I tend to take things like Mozilla dumping them without warning as a meant to be 'clue' to me that I needed to clean it out a little.
  Mozilla stopped opening things in tabs (which I prefer) at the same time it dropped my bookmarks, I'm beginning to think it's time for me to have the computer looked at again.
  Miss 16 came home in a royally ill mood, she & her boyfriend are having stress, I didn't help matters by flipping out on her because she asked for a dollar twenty five I owed her (I only had a ten dollar bill)
  Then just as she was beginning to unfreeze I mentioned to all 3 of them that the tax refund may be a bit smaller than usual this year, I'm earning more & the company gave me (& everyone else) 25 shares of company stock, a matching amount of cash (out of which they took taxes for both) & then I sold the stock, I think I'll need to pay tax on what I sold the stock for. There's also the fact that back in august of '05 I claimed exempt to federal tax to get myself some extra cash, I never changed it back (it makes a pretty big difference) & so whatever my actual tax burden is (With 3 kids & myself as the whole household its usually just under three hundred bucks) so the EIC will cover it & then some but the last 3 years we've cleared over 5 grand in refund & EIC. I sincerely doubt we'll see annother year like that again- The price of success.
  Miss 10 is still getting caught up on her homework, she has until next monday to get it all caught up for this, the third, marking period. Keeping her focused is one of my greater challenges, she's the biggest procrastinator I've ever seen (& belive me, my father was a master) she keeps walking around doing anything but homework, I offered to let her clean her room instead but she wasn't buying it.

Mr 7 being younger & only in second grade, came home with 2 sheets of work, one from before Christmas & one for tonight, this is the benifit to it having been the week before Christmas at school they do little more than crafts & have fun that last week & again the last two weeks before school closes in the summer. (spring I call it- they're out 5/31 barring any really severe weather which I doubt is going to happen this winter at this point, though I admit the worst ice storm I ever witnessed personally was in March 1994)
  When I was a kid the kids who went to public school got out around the 25th of June or so.
  I'm reaching a point in my life where what went on when I was a kid is irrelevant to everyone!
  This whole schedule change is going to take some getting used to, I keep thinking, 'I'll do it tommorow'  but tommorow I'll be at work not at home! I'll be home Friday & for a lot of reasons it is going to be better but the transition is a challenge. I spent yesterday telling myself I didn't have to work tommorow (Which is normal & often the only thing which gets me out of bed) but usually the mental mantra on Mondays is 'you don't have to come back for two whole days, just get through it' & I had to keep amending it to you don't have to work tommorow, you'll have Friday & Saturday off too! If they ever force me back on a schedule where I have to work any more than 2 days in a row I'll either loose my mind or quit!

   Last night (ok, early this morning) I was in bed, I was sitting up with my back & head against the wall because I do that when I first go to bed so I can breathe & in case I have an food in my stomach (I get awful heartburn if I lie down with anything in my stomach- not the case last night but still...) So I'm sitting there beginning to fall asleep & suddenly the back of my head begins vibrating, I reached up & touched the wall & it seemed to be vibrating to my hand too. In the dining room a room away I heard one of my hand painted (By me) snow village pieces fall to the floor. A few seconds later it stopped, did SW Virginia have annother earthquake? There was one back in 2003, I was sitting on the couch at our old trailer & so was miss 10 & we felt the wall & the couch rock, Miss 16 in the next room saw my earrings swinging on the thing I have them hanging on. but standing up in my bedroom (which was attatched to the trailer & made of wood) she didn't feel the quake. No one else felt anything though Miss 16 heard the ceramic house fall down from upstairs. & there was nothing on my favorite local news' website. Still, I wonder!

Posted by Becky at 7:25 PM EST
Monday, January 1, 2007
Book list 2006,
Topic: Booklist By Year

The Firey Cross by Diana Gabaldon
A breath of Snow & Ashes by Diana Gabaldon
Alamo House Women without Men, Men without Brains by Sarah Bird
Hey Nostradamus by Douglas Coupland
Cell by Stephen King
Uglies by Scott Westerfield
Pretties by Scott Westerfield
Specials by Scott Westerfield
Nightmares & Dreamscapes by Stephen King
Endlesslove (book on tape)
The Devils Dream By Lee Smith
A Million Little Pieces, by James Frey
The Davinci Code by Dan Brown
Elanor Rigby by Douglas Coupland
Wicked: the life & Times of the wicked witch of the west by Douglas Maguire
Between, Georgia. by Joshilyn Jackson.
The Ghost in the Gazebo, a collection of new england Ghost stories, by Edward Lodi
Confessions of a Failed Southern Lady by Florence King
American Gods by (book on tape)

Angels & Demons by Dan Brown (finished in the tub 12/30. 

One small note, this is a pathetic list by my standards as a reader however, in the last 6 years that I've worked 40+ hours a week, been a single mother to 3 kids & gotten addicted to the internet (a huge time hog as I'm sure everyone knows) this has actually been one of my better recent years in book reading.

Posted by Becky at 12:01 AM EST
Updated: Saturday, December 30, 2006 11:18 PM EST
Sunday, December 31, 2006
Last Meme of 2006
Topic: Stuff & Nonsense

1. What did you do in 2006 that you'd never done before?

I was able to Cut my sugar intake (for maybe, 8 of 12 months)

2. Did you keep your new year's resolutions, and will you make more for
next year?

I made No resolutions in 2006, I'm going to resolve to do better with my attendance at work this year,

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?

Not really, my ex-aunt did in February, I saw the little one for the first time Christmas eve.

4. Did anyone close to you die?
My Grandmother.

5. What countries did you visit?
Oh yeah, sure.

6. What would you like to have in 2007 that you lacked in 2006?
Money, Time, Patientice

7. What dates from 2006 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
Easter, whenever that was in April, because of the ex's visit, it's always odd seeing him & now even odder since he has a new family now.

December 14th when my grandmother died, very odd, I didn't want to go to work, I could feel something was wrong, I just didn't know what.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
 Not losing my Job yet.

9. What was your biggest failure?
Not being able to keep my patientice. Both at home & at work.

10. What was the best thing you bought?
I would say the plumbers services!

11. Whose behavior merited celebration?
Miss 16 with her all a's & b's this semester in 11th grade, lets hope the second semester is as good, (not holding my breath, Chemistry & Algebra 2 are in the mix)

12. Whose behavior made you appalled and disgusted?
Our President, Rumsfeld, et al.

13. What song will always remind you of 2006
Hate Me by Blue October

14. What do you wish you'd done more of?
Slept...lol, just kidding, spent time with my kids, though we did most of the things we like to do this year, except going camping....

15. What do you wish you'd done less of?
Complaining, Feeling stressed.

16. Did you fall in love in 2006
With my blog

17. What was your favorite TV program?

18. What was the best book you read?
Too Many to list, maybe Davinci Code since I didn't expect to like it.

19. What one thing would have made your year measurably more satisfying?
Well, more money of course!

20. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2006
What fashion concept? ok here goes: If it fits & isn't stained or made of really nasty polyester I'll wear it.

21. What kept you sane?
St Johns wort of course, that & liberal applications of sleep.

22. Who did you miss?
Since my grandmother just died, I can't say her really. I guess it would have to still be my brother. He's been dead 17 years but I never stop wondering what his take on current events, my kids, music etc. would have been, I think, because we were homeschooled & spent inordinate amounts of time together that its more like missing a best friend in a lot of ways.

23. Who was the best new person you met?
Both of the people who came to mind I technically met in october of 2005 so they don't really count. lets say Terrence from work since I got to know him more over this year even if I did meet him in 2005.

24. Tell us a valuable lesson you learned in 2006
 Get everything in writing beforehand.

25. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.
Heartless challenge, Pick your path & I'll pray... (no one said it had to be a current song!)

Posted by Becky at 12:01 AM EST
Updated: Saturday, December 30, 2006 5:58 PM EST
Saturday, December 30, 2006
Random Thoughts.
Now Playing: No Rain by Blind Melon
Topic: Rambling on
  • It's been crazy time at work & I'm just beginning to come back from the insanity of my work. add to it that half my group took Wednesday off & worked Friday & half worked Wednesday & had today off (we're all going to be the same next week) There's just too much going on.
  • An earthquake in the ocean broke some fiber optic cable 10 feet below the ocean floor & they have to dig it up & make repairs before we're going to have about 7 international channels back on. I gave up even asking people for patientice, it's been 4 days, they say it will be annother  3 or 4 days more before it's fixed,
  • I'm just giving everyone who subscribes to these particular channels 2 weeks of credit when they call in. It's something a Manager suggested this morning to all of us who were there without supervisors, this particular Manager used to be my immediate supervisor & I like her a lot because she is always so positive & upbeat.
  • We also have reading in common & it was her recommendation that started me on my current book which is Dan Brown's 'Angels & Demons' I had mentioned that I had loved the Davinci code & she highly recommended it to me as annother excellent book by Brown. I am enjoying it a lot.
  • It's a good thing too because my normal news junkie escape is not flying this week, everything is on Ford, now he was  the first president I remember but really, come on, I was amused to hear he didn't think much of Bush's war though.
  • There's a crazy old lady at my work, she says she's a poetess & when I looked her up on this website she is actually there. she cleans the bathrooms, empties the trashes & scrubs the tables in the breakroom.  She has worked there for maybe, 2 years, maybe a little longer, & she talks to herself as she dusts & to anyone else who pauses in her vicinity. 
  • Yesterday she told me there is a wildcat lurking in the parking lot! we are next to a school & an athletic field on one side, in 2 other directions we have a lot of vacant land (the county is hoping to build an industrial park there but other than our building & a shell building the county built- nothings moved in yet) But the other side is the highway, a very busy 4 lane interstate. (I81) & I find it hard to belive that a bobcat or wildcat is going to get that close to an interstate or a paved parking lot for that matter, but she insists not only that multiple people have told her that the supervisors have an email about this & that something followed her to the building from her car the other morning at 4 am when she was coming in to work.

  • Miss 16 has managed to top off annother record cell phone usage month we 'share' 1000 minutes each month & I usually use maybe, 100 minutes if I'm lucky (this will probably drop now that I don't have my grandmother to talk to) she uses the rest & this month she made it to 997 minutes! (I used 62) to her credit she didn't go over but she came pretty darn close.

  • Miss 10 has been doing an hour a day of school work, 4th grade has been proving a little more intensive than she had expected & missing 3 days to being sick the first week in December & annother 5 due to going to MA the 15th thru the 20th didn't help. Her teacher gave her all the papers she needed to complete & a list of her required reading pages in history & english. I have a feeling she's going to be in remediation or repeating 4th grade (summer school is not an option because it's every day from 9 to 1 & I'm only home 2 week days to drive her- they don't do buses for summer school) I hate it for her but looking at her work in everything but math, I'm beginning to think she's going to need the extra help.
  • Mr 7 is headed for a broken something or other, the skateboard is scaring me enough that I wish I had never bought it. Now he's started trying to stand on the basketball. he nearly broke his nose on the computer desk trying to balance on the ball he slipped & went down face first towards the desk. I think both items may need to disappear to the shed for a few weeks (& I thought my new padlock was only for hiding Christmas gifts- I guess in a way it still is!)
  • The best thing about Christmas season ending is that it brings in Tax Refund Season! I'm poor enough with 3 kids to qualify for the Earned Income tax credit & I'm more than happy to pay the evil percentage rate that H&R Block lay on you to get a rapid refund the same day as my taxes are done. Its worth it to me to have the money in my hand.
  •  This year at tax time we are getting stairs to replace the drop down attic steps to the 2 bedrooms on the second floor of my house & we are supposed to buy the drywall & lumber to make 2/3 of the garage into a room which will be part guest room part family room. This is the first year Ever. where I don't have a couple of hundred dollars in bills I'm holding off until the tax refund day. I'm essentially up to date on everything providing that nothing on the car fails between now & then. (knock on wood)
  •  That's the other priority, either tires & a tune up for my car or a replacement car. I've been wanting a new car for awhile (I've had this one 3 years & it's beginning to show it's age- I hate to say it but I wish I hadn't bought an american car- the last one was a Subaru & it had 189,000, miles on it when I traded it) I'd also like to get something with 4 wheel drive for these mountain roads in the winter (though I admit it looks like I might not need it this year!- I can hope)
  • I'm not much for resolutions, I like to tell miss 16 that the powers that be love to make you break promises & resolutions more than anything else but this year I am going to try really hard not to miss work unless it's an actual emergency, the new computer system is still putting my job satisfaction at nil (& I'm not the only one, everyone I talk to who's been taught the new system is miserable & hates being there- dreads coming to work etc. just like me) But I can't afford not to work there so I need to concentrate on doing the best I can so I can get off the phone & not use the computer system any longer.
  • I know I should make some sort of resolution about trying to lose weight or at least trying not to eat sugar but I found last spring when I was actually doing pretty well at not eating sugar that I did better by just concentrating on not eating it right. that. minute. & not looking any further than that with it. I have done so abysmally this Holiday season that I am fighting a canker sore on my lip which is always how my body tells me I've had too much sugar. The only encouraging factor is the relization of how much less sugar it took to get me there before- if christmas cookie dough one day, a slice of cheescake one day & a peppermint patty the next is enough to do it, for instance, thats better than the days when 2 whole boxes of fudge did it because I think if I ate that much now in one sitting I'd probably vomit.
  •  New Years is such a lame holiday. My ex & I were married on New Years Eve & even the year we were married we were in bed by 10:30 that evening. I remember the year 16 was 6, the ex & I went to bed at 9pm (I had an excuse, I was pregnant with miss 10) & Miss 6 stayed up & played in her room, I set my alarm clock to get up at 11:45 pm & watch the ball drop with miss 6 because she wanted to see it. we went down, turned on the tv, I got us 2 champange glasses full of ginger ale, the ball dropped we drank the ginger ale & she said 'ok, now what'
'that's it, it's bedtime now' I told her.
'Thats it? I stayed up for this?' she was outraged!
  • I hope everyone has a wonderful New Years Eve & a Prosperous & Healthy 2007!

Posted by Becky at 12:02 AM EST
Updated: Saturday, December 30, 2006 6:24 PM EST
Wednesday, December 27, 2006

I can not believe it is already 5pm+ & I have to go back to work tommorow, I hate working when the kids are home from school, I feel like I'm missing fun stuff- though truth be told when I'm at work & miss 16 is in charge mr7 rarely stirs from in front of the tv- I won't allow more than the length of a 2 hour movie in front of the tv when I'm home & insist everyone go outside for at least part of the day. Not an issue the past 2 days since mr 7 got a small skateboard & he & miss 10 have been fighting over it during daylight hours since he opened it. I wish I had been more physically active when I was a kid, then I might have a clue of how to help them learn to ride it, Mr 7 is an excelent mimic & feels he knows how to ride from watching tv, he knows how to stop the board & that's really the important thing to me! (especially since most of the cement we have here in our yard are slanted driveways & walkways & both end at a garage door with glass windows & my front door with glass windows- Stopping is really important.

   Miss 10's aparent favorite gift (other than her brother's stuff) is a cardboard doll house, a fold out, 4 room thing, which came with floam furniture which she made yesterday, she refused all offers of help I might add, she wanted to do it herself. I thought she'd like the making the house & furniture better than the playing with it when it was done but she seems to be enjoying that part too. 

Miss 16 likes the easel I found last night best, I think, it's hard to tell with her, she's upset because the sun is out & she likes rainy days better, she's also upset over her boyfriend's problems with his dad who's aparently a drunk. She is currently trying out her curling iron, she & her sister both got curling irons, miss 10 got a 3/4 inch barrel size one & miss 16 got a 1 & 1/2 inch barrel for larger curls, since her hair is so thick that's likely the only one which would work on it. 

I can't really say which one of my gifts is my 'favorite' I picked them out myself for the most part, other than a pair of sunglasses mr7 thought I needed & some Mandarin Orange bath salts miss 16 picked out because they said they were calming on the jar. (miss 10 picked out what she wanted to give me with me so I influenced her decision a little) I also got a crock pot which I've wanted for awhile, we're trying a pork roast in it today, with the pot set on high because we all got up ridiculously late this morning & didn't have time to cook it on low (10-12 hours)  so we'll see how that goes, someone is supposed to be emailing me a bunch of crock pot recipies but hasn't come through yet!

 I'm working on my year end in review, not that it'll be much of a big deal, just a meme I saw last year right after I started my blog & borrowed to use for this year. I'm also working on writing about my grandmother's life, not easy, Not original I'm afraid, one of my uncles is a really good writer & also a big history buff, he wrote her obituary & is the general writer for all family stuff. No one but myself & anyone who reads this blog will ever see my stuff of course, but it will make me feel better, after all I lived with her for my entire child hood & off & on from 19 to when we moved down here permanently in 1997.  I spent the early months of both my older kids lives with her right there with me all the time. (admitedly with miss 10 I did stay up in our room a lot of the time- I think in retrospect I had a touch of the baby blues that time) Still though, I think I can honestly say I knew my Grandmother very well. She was an interesting mix, very old fashioned & traditional, loved history but at the same time a political liberal with very clear, definite, modern opinions. I'm of two minds about writing about her, on the one hand it could help me deal with my greif, on the other hand, it could piss my family off & it may be boring for anyone not related to me. (of course I think my grandmother was special, she was my grandmother)

Miss 10: It's true girls can do anything boys can do. 

Mr 7: well, boys can do anything girls can do too.

Miss 10: Boys can't have babies

Mr 7: Well,....(long pause).... girls can't stand up to pee! 

Yes, well, I'm not sure it's quite the same. 

I'm more than a little distracted today, perhaps I should say my best gift, though not an acutal Christmas gift was this Mahjong Fortuna hookup my mother gave me her codes for, I didn't realize when I used her's at her house that the full access I had was due to her having played it extensively already, I'm enjoying it though, it's not like the free ones at all, much more fun & since she gave me her codes it was free to me! I'm addicted I have to admit & I've been going back & forth between it & writing this & reading other people's blogs all afternoon, after helping miss 10 with her catch-up homework & getting mr 7's room cleaned up with him & now I have to get off here & interact with the kids some more before shower time, the news, a movie I promised to watch with the kids tonight & off to bed at something like a reasonable time tonight.



Posted by Becky at 5:35 PM EST
And to All a good Night
Now Playing: Like a Stone by Audioslave
Topic: Family Business

Annother holiday passed without serious harm being done to anyone I know, admitedly, the new years holiday can be more dangerous than Christmas, I should know, my former marriage's anniversary is new years eve! would be 13 years this year, I'm sure if it had survived this long it would be ending by now, lucky 13 & all. Since I'm already mentioning the ex let me say he has yet to contact his kids for Christmas, no call, no email, no snail mailed card. The last email I had was dated 12/17. He hasn't written back, nor has he done anything else, now I admit, it was in response to my email letting him know that my grandmother had died & the kids would not be available to talk to him by phone or online on the 19th or 20th as was supposed to be in the planning stages when we got the call about Phil. But in my email to him about this whole thing I told him I'd be home both the 23rd & 24th & to go ahead & call anytime since I have free nights & weekends on my cell phone. (yes, I could have called him & let the kids talk to him but really, why open myself up for more grief, all it takes is the mention of 1 thing he doesn't like the sound of -  like that I had to work on Christmas day - I left work at 5 instead of 8- to set him off on a long winded, 'you don't take good enough care of the kids, you're always working & not around enough' rant & I have learned it's much easier not to open myself up to such things.

  Anyway, we had a good weekend, Saturday was spent getting groceries & making cookies. The coolest thing happened, I announced that the house had to get clean first thing in the morning, Mr 7 in particular had a very messy room which I insisted needed to be taken care of, I told him keeping his back to his sisters so he couldn't see them roll their eyes, that I'd heard at work that Santa was doing spot checks & could check in to be sure he had everything in order & that his room was clean, Mr7 went right to work & cleaned his room though he's been getting a lot more suspicious about the whole Santa thing, since he's the last I'm trying to keep it going just a little longer. I did hear a couple cracks from his room about Santa had better appreciate this....So on our way to the Pharmacy to pick up a perscription we were in traffic at our County's only stop light & who should come through in the opposite lane waving & honking his horn but Santa in full dress, (right down to shiny gold - rimmed glasses) he was driving a beat up pickup truck but what else would be better in southwest Virginia? I pointed him out to mr7 immediately & also that he was headed in our house's direction! Mr7, with his flair for the dramatic said 'Phew' wiped his brow & said 'man, am I glad I cleaned my room!' Miss 16 told me later I was cruel & heartless, I didn't bother to remind her about how the ex & I had her convinced that sprinklers in stores & homes were Santa's surveilance system.

   In spite of saying I was going to take it easy in light of the busy last couple weeks, the list of cookies I wanted to make increased to such an extent that I made more varietys than normal, we had a list which included:

Chocolate chip cookies


Coconut macaroons

Rice Krispy treats

Butter Cookies

Pepermint pinwheels

Kissable thumbprint cookies

Stained glass cookies 

The last 4 are really the same butter cookie batter but it's really versatile & can be used in all kinds of cookies, the pepermint pinwheels are a new thing, we tried them last year & miss 16 really liked them & so made them again this year, it's a recipe we saw on Good Eats "the Cookie Clause" episode & my butter cookie recipie is essentially the same as theirs except we use twice as many eggs & only use the egg yolks. Later that night after a pick up dinner, (I didn't eat a thing, too ill with all the cookie batter & crumbled pieces I'd been nibbling) we finished the wrapping of gifts, (begun the 22nd after I got off the computer, I didn't go to bed until after 2 am on Friday night & it was telling on me, by the time I insisted miss 10 & mr 7 go to bed at 1030 I was already falling asleep)

 Sunday morning we made up the bags & boxes of cookies for friends & former neighbors, took showers etc & I was just messing around online when my sister in law called me to see 'where we were' -? I was a little surprised since it was just a few minutes past 3 at that point, I usually don't show up at Aunties until about 6, the kids had made me promise to try to go closer to 4 or 5 & I was really just waiting for 330 to start our rounds of dropping off cookie boxes & then go there. since SIL seemed to think we should already be there we headed out. After 7 stops we arrived at Auntie's & the kids had a blast, there were at least a dozen kids there & they all got gifts, it was a chaos of unwrapping & people calling out names on gifts, I was on the opposite side of the room from my younger ones & while that was great for taking pictures, it means I have no idea who gave them what! We ate & Hung out with the family for quite a few hours, it was fun, brought back old memories, some good, some bad, I missed my mother in law, who had gone to NY with her boyfriend (I guess that's what you call him, I know at 38 I would prefer not to refer to any one I was romantically linked with as a 'boyfriend' & she's considerably older than I am. Maybe 'life partner'?) This will mean I'll have to try to get with her sometime soon & interact, I do like my MIL, always have, I like/d both my in-law parents, it's my ex's step parents who drove me crazy, both of them. 

  When we arrived home we cleaned up a little, (it wouldn't do to have Santa see the place like it was) everyone got to open 1 more present  ('cause I'm a pushover, I also felt a little guilty because of having to work on Christmas) Everyone was pleased at what they recieved & I didn't pull any of those power plays where I hand out gifts with new pajamas in them though miss 16, freezing on the couch requested the pajama pants her sister had picked out for her & told her about - this was one year where almost everyone knew almost everything they were getting, no one in my house can keep a secret! 

 The stockings were propped on the couch (no chimney/fireplace to speak of in my house I'm afraid) & people were sent to bed, I filled miss 10's stocking first because she's been demanding to 'help' this year, since she's such an old hand at all this, (she's known the 'truth about Santa' for 3 years now) I know it's all a ploy to see what she's getting early & so I thwarted her, she filled her brother's stocking though & that satisfied her.  

  Off to work at the usual time, work was crummy, I can't decide which I like less, the people who try to commiserate with me about working on Christmas, or the people who just ignore the whole thing, I was thinking to myself that if 1 more person called in & said to me 'why are you working on Christmas?' I was going to lose it & point out that if they were'nt calling in I wouldn't have to be there! Don't call businesses on a holiday folks! Please! We are all begging to be sent home & the less calls coming in, the more likely we are to be sent home! 

  The people who start at 9 am with us but go home at 5:30 were sent home at 4:15 & I was rather annoyed about it, it was obvious to all of us that they were going to try to hold everyone as long as possible, I knew there would be a large influx of people coming in at 5 pm & so I told my boss that if we weren't sent home at 5 I was leaving anyway, he was ok with it. & so I left at 5, we ate, did the tree & I tried to convince everyone that bed at 10 would be a good thing, no one bought it & by the time I had gotten everyone to go to bed I'd gotten absorbed in my current book (Angels & Demons by Dan Brown- the book before the DaVinci code) & didn't actually shut off the light until 1 am again! 

Today has been quiet, Folded a ton of clothes (first time in almost 3 weeks I'm afraid, we've been living out of the laundry baskets & just adding more as they dry) Watched Fight Club for the first time (yes, I'm a little behind in my movie viewing) it was pretty good as miss 16 had told me it was (the dvd was a gift from me to her at her request) a quick run to the store to get milk & a few other things, got 2 checks in the mail today quite unexpectedly, one was from a company I had done business with & I'd closed my account but over paid, they refunded the amount I'd overpaid & it came today, I figured it would show up eventually. The other was from one of my Grandmother's brothers, he wrote that he wanted to send the kids & I something for Christmas & that he hoped we'd be able to have a good Christmas in spite of our loss. Very nice of him I might add, Very Generous. Christmas presents just keep showing up! Earlier today I was picking up my room & located a basketball I had purchased for mr 7 & forgotten to wrap & then just a little while ago Miss 16 also reminded me I had hinted to her about an easel I got her which I also had hidden in my room & had forgotten to wrap & put under the tree! 

  Tommorow will be my last Wednesday home, I'm going to be home Friday & Saturday in tandem instead & still have Tuesdays off too, it occoured to me that this schedule is too cool & they'll probably take it away from us pretty quick, simply because it's a good one, still only in the building 2 days in a row, off on the 'fun' weekend days & still out of there at 8pm every night I do have to work.!  I'm attempting to convince myself that hating my job is no excuse not to go & am going to try for a perfect attendance year in 2007, hopefully the ex's track record will hold & he won't actually try to see the kids this year (it's been every other year for 6 years now)  When he comes to visit he always manages to time it so I have no paid days off acrued to use & so I have to call in sick. I will have 1 extra paid day off in 2007 due to us meeting a goal we had set for us early, It's supposed to be used on 2/19 but everyone in the company can't take the same day off so I'm sure I won't actually be off on that day. (I'd prefer a little earlier, around tax refund time, or a little later, when my uncle comes to visit in June or my cousin & her family come at some unplanned time this year) More than enough for tonight on here. it's late & I'm tired, now, as long as I don't pick up my book & 'promise' myself only 1 chapter.....

Posted by Becky at 12:03 AM EST
Friday, December 22, 2006
Have a Cool Yule!
Now Playing: So this is Christmas by John Lennon

Back home & very glad to be here! Not so glad about going back to work but into every life some rain must fall.

The whole viewing, service & burial for my grandmother went very smoothly, my cousin was there but low key- & she would not look me in the eye. The cleaning out of the apartment was also smooth, the uncles got along, there was none of that petty 'I want this, you can't have it' that you hear about when families have to divide up the material possessions, my uncles & my mother were more interested in divesting themselves of stuff not acquiring more (It was only the 4 of them & myself, no grand children or great grand children) They each took things for their kids & themselves but I seem to be the only person in the whole family (34 of us) who has an ancient couch, no chairs & no wherewithal to go out & buy one so I got all my grandmother's furniture by default, it's going to be in storage in NH until the summer but it's well worth it, the only problem is it is all pale blue & cream & my kids are heathens, as my mother pointed out I have about 6 months to get them to be more gentle & learn not to eat in the living room, I'll feel awful if I ruin my grandmother's furniture (she bought it in 1992 so it's not too old) I think I'll need to invest in slip covers!

   Driving home was hell. plain & simple. There was no Christmas spirit in evidence on Interstate 81 on Wednesday that is for damn sure! You can see by my picture (or I can at least) that the stress & grief are really beginning to take it's toll on me- at this point driving I was just focused on getting us all home in one piece & then hoping to sleep as soon as possible after getting home. I was so glad to get back home to my area, where people coming towards you on the road, (back roads & main roads both) wave at you as you pass. I'm feeling much less stressed since we've been home even though work has been a pain- they told us our schedule is changing as of the 30th, we're going to be off Tuesday, Friday & Saturday, working the same hours as previously though, not too big of a deal for me, it may even be better! (Miss 16 thinks she'll like it better)

   I'm focused much more on the practical than the emotional right now. I just need to get through grocery shopping, gingerbread house decorating, cookie making, gift wrapping & meal preparations & of course spending most of Christmas day at work. Not too big a deal, Christmas eve at Auntie J's is like a beginner Christmas & the kids are accustomed to opening stockings together with out me- I'm a lot happier if I get to sleep in- they're also assuring me that they'd rather wait for me to come home & eat a nice dinner & then open the gifts under the tree on Christmas evening- since I don't have to work Tuesday or Wednesday we can stay up late on Christmas & then sleep in. I do have the next 2 days off which is nice too.     

Tommorow will be grocery shopping & I have decided that if I can't get it in Floyd I don't need it. There is no way I'm going near any walmart or mall tommorow at all. I hope to get out reasonably early & get back home by noon because I've got a lot of cookies to make & a gingerbread house to put together with mr 7 who is about to loose his mind because we have not made it yet!


We were leaving my Grandmother's apartment on Sunday afternoon after spending a draining afternoon going through boxes, packing things up for each family branch to keep & discussing where & how the furniture would go & get to me. Everyone but my mother & my kids had left & we were on our way out too & Miss 10 asked to borrow my cell phone to take a picture out the window of my grandmother's living room to 'remember the view' after she took the picture I was glad she had done so, it is a beautiful view of one of my favorite places in the world! 

   On the way home from work tonight I went over to Target to pick up 1 last minute gift for each of the kids, (there was still room on the credit card of the same name as the store - bad habit of mine at Christmas, if there's money left to be spent it has to be spent) I was amused at how stressed everyone seemed, especially those with small kids. I do get stressed though, just not often at Christmas time, I refuse to do anything I don't want to do when it comes to Christmas- if picking, writing & sending Christmas cards ever begins to feel like a chore, like something I 'have' to do I'll stop. The same with baking the cookies etc. I want to do them & I will, things like stringing popcorn & cranberries to hang on the tree are ok, It was a family tradition when I was growing up & some years we do it now but this year there was no way. Cranberries were ridiculously expensive & the time was short. So no Cranberries or popcorn. I went out of my way to be nice to everyone who met my eyes in Target & especially the people working there I've worked in stores at Christmas & I know what a hell it can be, I'm mostly just glad I'm not there with them!

  I probably won't get back to this until after the holiday, I'm feeling a little drained & as I said I'm not letting myself really look too deep in the emotional sense, every once in awhile something will strike me like 'I should tell Phil about that next time we talk' & I do a sort of double take & remember Phil died last week (My grandmother & grandfather had all my cousins & I call them by their first names rather than 'grandma' or anything like that so I refer to her by her given name always) 

 This Last pic is one of miss 16 the day we arrived in Mass when we went to the beach to kill time while waiting for my mother to get her hair done. She likes it & so do I. The cape is mine but I don't have the flamboyance to wear it much so she borrowed it for the week- I notice I haven't gotten it back & I have a feeling I won't! 

  I hope everyone has a great holiday & either makes a bunch of awsome memories or has a lot of fun remembering other holiday memories from the past.

Posted by Becky at 11:17 PM EST
Saturday, December 16, 2006

Now Playing: Satisfaction Guaranteed by the Firm

Day 3 of the whirlwind, it's always so odd when someone dies, it's like time stops & you do all this stuff you almost never do. My Grandmother died on Thursday morning & the world has stopped for me at this point. 

 Thursday the kids woke me up by letting me know that our new water pressure (since the plumber was there) Had disappeared, it was down to nothing so instead of sleeping the additional 40 minutes I sleep after they leave for school I got right up. it was cool but not really cold (someone broke my out door thermometer while putting up Christmas lights last week so I wasn't sure it was under 32 but it felt pretty brisk, at first I thought it was just running slow because the pipes were partially frozen (I have a whole lifetime's experience with cold, partially heated houses & frozen pipes) but when I found the toilet, tub, bathroom & kitchen sinks all either trickling or not putting out any water I decided there was a problem. I got ready for work, started the car & took a trip to the basement. I found the problem pretty quick! to increase my water pressure the plumber had changed a pipe from my reserve tank to the main & it had sprung a leak at the join. It was spewing water & had been for quite awhile, (there was 5-6 inches of water in the basement already- there is a drain- though it is pretty plugged up but the basement isn't improved in any way so it's not going to hurt anything too much) I called the plumber who was about 80 miles away taking someone to an aiport! He said one of his sons was at home & he'd call him & have him go check. he told me to shut off the power at the circut breaker, leave the basement unlocked & go to work. I headed out, there were little patches of black ice on the road & the car skidded a few times, I wasn't really worried, that often happens in the mountains, certain areas in valleys & all don't see enough sun early to take the ice off the road, it was just a thin sheet, but as I drove I kept thinking about the plumber, the water, my grandmother's illness & that if the plumber was there long or got there late my younger kids would be coming home to find him there (they get home a little while before their 16 year old sister on school days) I turned around, I just wasn't comfortable with the whole thing. I called work, went online & messed around with an online photo album I keep, changing pictures, deleting, adding the Thanksgiving pictures & waiting for the plumber. I had texted miss 16 to let her know what was going on & at 11:00 she called & said she was through with her SOL test & really didn't have to be there for the day if I wanted to come get her she could be there for the plumber & the kids. (Virginia Standards Of Learning tests- it's the bench mark VA uses to determine which schools are doing their job- a certain number of kids have to pass the SOLs or the school does not retain it's accredidation- which leads to a lot of teaching to the test- but it's still a good overview of how your kids are doing) So I went to town & got her, when I got there she had her test scores, she had, as an 11th grader, one in  English & one in History, English she took on Monday & got a perfect 600 which is the best you can do, History she had just completed on Thursday & she got a 575 out of a 600! I was thrilled for her, she's doing really well this year so far.

  Back home we saw a can of plumbers glue on our back step but no van. About 15 minutes later the plumber's son showed up & asked me to turn on the power to the water pump so he could check the seal, (I can tell you now, it didn't hold, I still have water in my basement & there was no water in my pipes at all when we left home Thursday night) I decided to get to work to maximize as much time on the phones as possible & thought I might stay over that night to make up some of the hours I'd missed, I didn't feel right about leaving, I still felt like I should be at home, but I went because finnancially I couldn't not go. On the way I encountered the cleanup of an accident due to ice, someone had slipped & slid into an oncoming car. I knew the state trooper working the wreck from when my ex was on the rescue squad way back in the day & he told me the accident occoured around 815 that morning, that's right around the time I drive through that area on my way to work on a normal day so I figured that's why I didn't want to go to work this morning but I found out later I had other reasons to want to stay home. I got to work just as my group was going to lunch, I started working & took about 3 calls, it was slow & so I pulled out my cell phone to text miss 16 & ask how the plumbers were doing & found I had a voice mail from my mother notifiying me of my grandmother's passing at 10:30. She had called & left it at the same time I was logging into my work computer. I waited for my boss to come back from lunch & let him know & called miss 16 who, as I've said before was very close with my grandmother. I went home, unpacked the 4 bags the kids had packed for 5 days & re-packed 1 bag with what we actually needed! I had to take a trip to the locked shed & pull out some clothes I had picked up for myself for Christmas since I didn't have much of any decent black clothes & I got a really nice black velvet skirt at Lane Giant on clearance which will do nicely, I wanted to get going but at the same time I wanted the water problem cleared up & to be sure I had everything we needed, we packed entertainment for the little ones, (Not enough) more entertainment than I actually needed & a bag of toiletries & one of snack foods so 10 & 7 wouldn't eat my mother out of house & home (they are anyway) I still forgot to bring any shoes but my sneakers! We left home at 530 Thursday evening (after the news, to make sure there were no accidents in the Roanoke area & that the clear, warm weather was going to hold at least long enough to get here -it's still holding) I did better than usual (when going on vacation) with the driving, I usually come home around the same time I did Thursday but I try to nap & rest & we don't actually leave for vacation until 9-10pm, leaving at 530 I was able to drive until 330 am & then slept in a rest area in upstate NY for 2 hours (with miss 16 staying awake with orders to scream & wake me up if anyone even looked at the car funny- our standard proceedure) & then drove the rest of the way. We could have arrived at my mother's at 10 am Friday but she had told me on the phone that she had a hair appointment at 10 so instead of going to her place we went to the beach to see it (neither of my younger kids had ever been to the beach in winter & miss 16 didn't remember doing so either though she's been plenty of times) This eliminated a lot of nagging on the kids part. We've cleared that out of the way, they've been & I don't have to hear about it. I am, however, still hearing about the food, in the summer on vacation both my mother & my grandmother always took us out to dinner most nights, I felt bad about it but they always said it was easier than cooking & cleaning up & since they only saw the kids & I once a year it wasn't like they got to spoil us much anyway, the kids are accustomed to eating at the 99, Lobster hut, chineese food & wonderful sub shops whenever we come up here & I have to keep reminding them this isn't a vacation. (we did go out for chineese today for lunch because my mother said she'd been craving it for weeks & was happy to not have to go alone)

  When we arrived at my mother's she gave me a 3 page email my uncle who's my grandmother's power of attourney & executor of her will. It covered what he knew of what my grandmother wanted people to have & also the basic plans for the funeral, the apartment building she's been living in is hud owned & they only give you 2 weeks to clear out a person's belonging when they die (as opposed to 30 days if the person moves to a nursing home) so 2 of my 3 uncles have already been working on sorting stuff out etc. My other uncle arrived at my mother's apartment around 6 last night & we went out to have subs & visit a little- I haven't seen this uncle since 1997 & he is my favorite & very influential in my life so it was exciting to see him again. Tommorow we head up to my grandmother's place, (my mother lives on the south shore of Boston & my grandmother & most of the rest of the family -except the aforementioned favorite uncle who lives on an island off the cape- live north of Boston so we've got a 60+ mile drive through Boston tommorow & are staying at my cousin's apartment complex's guest room where the kids & I stayed during our  Vacation last summer.) We'll be there overnight because the calling hours are 10 to 12 Monday & then the service is at 12. It will be a long day & I'm still torn about wether to let 7 & 10 come to the service & funeral at all. (I have cousins with younger kids & certainly should be able to have my younger kids stay with whoever is watching their kids) I was 8 when my grandfather died & I went to the calling hours but not the funeral, the first 'real' (family at least) funeral I ever attended was my Brother's in 1989 & I was 20 already. 

  Between the actual funeral, calling hours etc & the cleaning out the apartment we have a least 2 fairly ugly old family battles which it is going to be interesting to see if they flare up or if everyone's going to play nice, I'm involved in one of them & intend to take the moral high road & ignore any & all slights this particular cousin my throw in my direction. The other is uglier & could cause problems tommrow at the apartment clearing & also on Monday. I really hope my involved uncles both play nice too because although I don't care if I see one ever again I love his adult children (& his wife) I'd hate to have to choose sides again because without my Grandmother to 'force' everyone to be nice & be there for one annother the 2 warring factions will probably never speak again.

  Doing this seemed kind of frivolus tonight but my mother was tired & went to bed at 930, the kids were all settled down by 10. (mostly due to threats from 16 to sit on anyone who made a peep) I was tired last night (we were ALL in bed by 9 last night) but I've had enough caffeine to know I wouldn't be able to sleep for awhile when the kids went to bed. I'm glad I wrote though, it has helped me marshal my thoughts & relax a little, as I mentioned the next 2 days have the potential to be very stressful & I try to look at my kids, (who no one sees all that much as we're so far away from everyone else) as a buffer zone for the tension between family members. (at least I hope that will be how it goes) If they're too loud & people get stressed about it I intend to take the kids to NH to the mall & let them walk their excess energy off. 

I think I will be able to sleep now (even if it is on the floor - I got the sofa bed last night & Miss 16 has comandeered it tonight- I don't think I'll miss it too much, that bar which hits you just in the ribs in most sofa beds was doing it's job last night!) 

Posted by Becky at 11:35 PM EST
Wednesday, December 13, 2006
How Frustrated am I? (warning, Bitch session ahead)
Now Playing: Always by Saliva
Topic: just letting off steam

The internet is wonky at best, this may get lost.

I've had miss 10 home sick up to today & now miss 16 is complaining of intestinal discomfort, there was a report on the news at 11 last night about a flu bug fitting 10's description of her symptoms  so at least we know it's not something she ate somewhere. 

The Christmas tree smells awsome, every once in awhile I catch a whiff of the scent of it from the next room & it makes me smile. 

 I am worried beyond belief due to my mother calling last night to tell me that my  grandmother's kidneys are shutting down & her heart is getting weak (She's had a pacemaker for about 17 years already bad hearts & high blood pressure run in my family on my mother's side I'm afraid) She's been in & out of hospitals & rehab centers & nursing homes for months since she broke her hip, most recently she re-broke her hip at the nursing home & when she went back to the hospital they replaced her hip, now she's taken what my mother says is a fairly drastic turn. My mother wanted me to know that it would not be long, they think maybe before Christmas. She's got a living will in regards to drastic measures to prolong her life & she, like my mother & myself don't want any thing extreme to be done to keep her alive.

I can understand that but it still is hard, I've always been very close to my grandmother, more so in many ways than with my mother. Miss 16 especially is too. up until she was in the nursing home (where she didn't have a phone for quite awhile) we were in touch at least every other week. Now I have to think that the last conversation I had with her (where she was coherent) may be the last conversation I ever have with her. 

16's very upset & being dramatic & already in a funk (it's premenstrual) she called me weeping from school during lunch (mostly she was raging about the crappy food! This is her grade's 'standards of learning' test week - they couldn't have picked a better acronym this: SOL, as in shit outta luck! & she got a perfect score on her English yesterday, this is an off day & she has her History sol tommorow, the stress is killing her- & us who have to deal with her) 

The plumber was awsome, he was late but it only took 2 & 1/2 hours to fix all the things which were wrong. We had no water pressure, the tub ran constantly, the toilet was leaking through the floor into the basement on a farily large support beam, he noticed while checking things out that my hot water heater pipes were plastic when they should be copper & replaced those too, all my pipes between the holding tank & the main were small & narrow so he replaced them to increase the water pressure & also found that something in the holding tank was wrong which was a lot of the pressure problem. I kept telling him I had only $500 budgeted to spend on plumbing & when he presented me with his bill it was only for $337! Needless to say I was thrilled & still am, Miss 16 being impossible to please (& even harder to deal with) says it's not that good, that the shower's water pressure is not as good as the ones in Mass, But I'm satisfied that it doesn't take 2 hours to do a load of laundry because the washer is filling up with a trickle of water & I can wash dishes in about 10 minutes due to a normal flow of water from the sink faucet. (I haven't taken a shower yet but I have to tonight since I go back to work tommorow. I'll let you know) 

 All I have to do for Christmas now is finish making gifts & wrap everything, make cookies & candies for giving & hope I don't have to drop everything to go to Mass for a funeral.

 I'm still trying to get over my annoyance at miss 16 for taking her menstrual moods out on all of us, she's home now, slamming cupboards, binging on cereal & complaning that Chicken Divan for dinner sucks. She's also wearing my shirt which I am pretty pissed about. It's my Censorship:off Free speech: on shirt & when she came in to my room to get it I thought she was there to steal socks & didn't say anything. 

  My annoyance at one is rapidly changing to annoyance at all. Miss 16 has pissed off miss 10 & got me involved because miss 10 is supposed to be in the dining room at the table doing her homework & instead is on the couch doing it in front of the tv. not acceptable as far as I'm concerned. 

Since this is rapidly deteriorating into a bitch session about kids who don't know how to shut up & I have to go out & get gas for my car & kerosene for my heat & then make some dinner I will finish this up, posting may be spotty in the near future due to general life stuff. 


Posted by Becky at 4:52 PM EST
Monday, December 11, 2006
It's Always a Good News Bad News Situation!
Now Playing: Hey Man, Nice Shot, by Filter
Topic: Family Business

A Quick note on this post, it's dated the day it was written though I couldn't post it until 12/13 due to my internet being decidedly funky Monday night & that I was busy with the plumber here all day yesterday. 


Good News: The house is Decorated for Christmas,










tree & all are finished. 

Bad News: The house is a mess around the decorations.

Good News: The plumber is coming tommorow, we may have our water problems finished up by this time tommorow night.

Bad News: See above, it's 1030 at night & there's couch fluff all over my floors, the toilet bowl is brown, there's hair & other unpleasant looking things in my bathtub & the plumber is coming tommorow.

Good News: Heard from the ex this weekend & he got home safely from Iraq, he's not dead & he wants to send the kids a laptop for Christmas. (Mixed blessings here for sure).

Bad News: Heard from the ex & he's already pushing me & belittling me via email, I also called child support enforcement to check on the child support for this month & there's no check pending, my worst fears are reallized that now he's through with the whole combat thing the kids are not going to see any money to help us through our expenses. 

Good News:  I have the next 2 days off & can relax now that I'm through with everything I'm required to do for Christmas in the way of purchsing gifts.

Bad News: there's still plenty of things to do for Christmas like wrap presents, make cookies, make a nice dinner etc. etc. 

Good News: I'm pretty much over my cough & cold.

Bad News: Miss 10 is home sick with diareah & vomiting & theres a good chance I'll end up sick being home with her.







Good News: I have bought all the Christmas presents I'm going to buy this year unless family sends money for more purchases which would be from them. 

Bad News: See above where I mentioned the child support, I might not have spent so much if I'd known I'd be $200+ poorer than usual this month. (especially on what I got for myself & gave the kids to spend to get me gifts)  

 Good News: The Christmas tree is beautiful & we managed to get through the decorating with minimal yelling, bickering & fighting mr 7 only hit his sister once & miss 16 & I only argued twice when she wandered off to get online twice (anyone who reads my blog will notice that although I had 2 full days off this weekend I did not get online & blog or do anything else - except check email early saturday morning- at all this weekend- I spent it with the kids 100%.) 

Bad News: The cat likes the tree & has already broken 2 or 3 ornaments from climbing, the ornament situation is a real issue because there were already many many broken ones in the boxes due to people not putting things away correctly last year & people climbing on the boxes over the summer (People meaning mr 7 who is a climber without reason - he will make detours just to climb over furniture & jump off it). 

 Good News: I have Christmas Eve off which means we get to go to Aunties as a family & enjoy ourselves longer than if I had to work until 8pm.

Bad News: I do not have Chirstmas Day off so we either have to do the tree Christmas Eve afternoon or in the evening on Christmas after I get home from work.

Good News: I have worked more than a few Christmases (this is the 6th year with this company & I'm 3 for 3 now) & they always send you home early.

Bad News: Any time not at home is too much time not at home on a holiday. (If you care about the Holiday- I was very zen this Thanksgiving, we'd had our feast the day before & I got all the togetherness, love & sharing I needed & was ok with working all day- good thing too, because we worked all day)

Good News: got lots of pictures of the tree decorating as you can see!

Bad News: Only bad news for you if you have dial up!

Good News: Had a great time Friday Night with my co-workers at our holiday night out!

Bad News: Didn't miss at least 1 person who was supposed to come & didn't.  (well, not really bad news in my book: if you met this person you might understand) I still feel guilty though, when I can't like everyone I know wholeheartedly.

Good News: Ann Posted for the first time in months! 

Bad News: I'm wishing I either had more time to post or more of a life to post about!

Good News: I might get to take a shower instead of a bath tommorow night! (see above about the plumber)

Bad News: I wouldn't have called the plumber if had known the money was going to be so tight with out the child support! I'm also, of course, worried that it'll cost more for the plumber than I've budgeted for the plumber.

 Good News: Miss 10 is at 30 minutes keeping down toast, a new record since yesterday.

 Bad News: I have to run the Vacum around the house before I go to bed & it's nearly 11pm already! 

Posted by Becky at 12:01 AM EST

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