Another Edition of Friday Fragments

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Yeah.  It’s Friday.  You know what to do.  Skip MY post and go check out the other ones linked to Mrs.4444.  There are a whole shitload of much more entertaining writers than me!

***I don’t think the neighbor’s kids eat anything besides shit.  Or maybe anything.  When it comes dinner time at our house, the little girl actually comes to the door and knocks to ask if she can have some of whatever it is we are eating.  At first I just felt bad, and now I feel bad but also annoyed.  Last night I actually had to get up and close the curtains because there were four little kids standing on the porch staring in, and MY kids are no longer “allowed” to take a snack outside with them for fear of being wrestled to the ground for a bite of an apple.

***Steve has been sick ( I mean physically); he has had a terrible cold, and why oh why can’t men just suck it up?  He is going out of town tonight to help his brother move, and I am all like “Thank you Jebus.”  Because I am tired of the whining and the pissing and moaning, and also annoyed that I have all of these things I do when I have a cold (Vicks, Herbal tea, etc…) that WILL help, only he would just rather be miserable.

***I am putting Sam on an airplane to Seattle on Sunday; he is going to spend a week with my friend C.  The thing is, he has been staying up until all hours imagining the worst scenarios ever, having never been on a plane on his own; I might have to give him a Xanax to get him ON the plane. 

***I was really kind of bummed that I couldn’t go to BlogHer, right?  But the more posts I read about it, the more glad I am that I didn’tgo.  And I highly doubt that I will be so upset next year for not being able to go, either.  It sounds just like high school-and not only am I not an A-List blogger, I am not even a B or C blogger.  More like a T blogger. 

***So far, in the last week I have discovered that if you have a kid in trouble, you better be wealthy.  There are some really great programs available to families with money.  The irony doesn’t escape me; statistically speaking, children from low-income families are in much more need of intervention in order to prevent the descent into delinquent behavior, yet there are no programs available UNTIL such delinquent behavior is documented-by repeated run-ins with law enforcement.  Makes me really.fucking.sick. that in order to get REAL help for Hannah, I have to wait until she gets arrested for something.  Isnt’ that just lovely?

***I was having a terrible dream last night about a policeman coming to the house late at night, looking for my ex-husband.  And no matter how much I insisted that he didn’t live there, the cop was equally insistent that he was, that I was hiding him.  So he came into my house, smoking a cigarette and carrying a gun, and Steve was there on the couch; cop still wouldn’t believe that HE wasn’t my ex-husband, so he pointed the gun at him.  In my dream, I hit the cop, and he turned and knocked me down.   I started to wake up then because I could feel the hairs on the back of my neck starting to raise even in my sleep, but it was one of those dreams where you just can’t get all the way awake.  Just then, in my REAL life, all  three of the dogs started barking like mad, those deep, loud scary barks, and I am not ashamed to say I peed just a little. 

On that note, I will say sayonara for now; head on over the see Mrs.4444 for the REAL goods.

A Planned Protected Post and Plea for help

I am working on another password protected post for tomorrow or Friday.  If you already have the password from the last one, it remains the same.  If you don’t and would like it, please shoot me an email.  And if I ignore an email from you,  it probably means I don’t like you and/or you won’t be getting the password.  Just sayin.’

Also, I am asking all of you for help.  Hannah is-well.  All of you know what Hannah has gone through this past year, and I won’t get into it here but things are taking a decidedly downhill turn.  What I am asking is that each of you write Hannah a letter.  It can be a letter detailing your own personal experiences with any or all of the following issues:  sexual abuse, emotional and behavioral problems, academic and social issues.  Tell her about what happened, and how you found a way through.  Tell her about the pain, but also the healing and the joy.  Tell her how you personally overcame whatever obstacle (s) you were or are facing, and how you go on to lead normal, fulfilled lives.  It is one thing for me to say to her, “I know this woman/man who went through THIS, and you can get through it, too.”  Another thing entirely to be able to read the words on paper, to flip through the pages and have physical evidence that it can be done.  I would like to make her a scrapbook of sorts, filled with your triumphs, so that she has tangible evidence that she isn’t alone, and that she can be okay.  Any of you who are willing to do so, please email me with your letter.  The title of the email needs to read something like “Letter to Hannah” so I can easily find it, and I promise you that I will not share, without permission, anything in those letters, with anyone but Hannah.   I would like to be able to print them out and put them in a book of sorts for her, something she can keep with her.

And pray for her.  If you don’t pray, send up good thoughts, or light candles, burn incense, send out positive vibes to the universe on her behalf.  Pray for me, that I will be able to do what needs to be done.  Pray that at least one of the doors I am opening will lead us down the right path.  Pray that at least one person will say just the right thing for her, that she will find her way and her strength and her beauty, that she will ultimately be okay.

I Just HAD to Go To Wal-Mart

Do you all know how much I hate Wal-Mart (so much so that I won’t even put a link in)?  My long-time readers do, but for those of you who don’t, well, you now know that I do, in fact, hate Wal-Mart.  With a purple passion (and where in the hell did that little phrase come from?  Anyone know?).  I vehemently hate Wal-Mart.  So imagine my chagrin when I HAD to take Sam there to get his glasses last year.  Glasses that he broke on Friday, which prompted a little temper tantrum on my part involving  several swear words and a bottle of Havana-Lime steak marinade. ‘Nuff said.  Glasses that required me to actually GO to Wal-Mart and instigate an exchange with one of their oh-so-lovely employees. 

It started off on a good note which lasted all of, oh, 32 seconds. “Oh, good, they are still under warranty!” she said. My heart leaped as I imagined a three minute fix and out the door we would go.  Not so, my friends, not so. “However, they have discontinued them in our location, so it will take up to two weeks to get them.  Can I offer you another set of frames instead?”  When I asked her if she was going to comp a similar pair to me, since the ones he has are no longer available at their store, she seemed pissed and surprised that I would even suggest such a thing. “Why would I do that?  I am trying to make it easier for you to get by until the replacement frames come in.  I certainly wouldn’t be able to give them to you for free.”  “So, um, why would I want to buy a second, brand new, three times as expensive set of frames?”  And she had the balls to say, “So that people don’t laugh at him for having duct tape holding his earpiece on.”  I about flipped my lid; in fact, I kind of stared blankly at her because she even went there, in front of my son no less.  You know, the one with the duct tape holding his glasses together.  I have to admire myself for my relative calmness, though.  I simply said, “Is there someone nicer here with whom I can speak?” and it shocked her into apologizing.  And then when I said “Is it really going to take two weeks, or is the order going to get here within a week and then it will sit on the shelf until I call in two weeks to see if it has, in fact, arrived?”  She rather sheepishly said, “The order will probably be here in a week.”  “Great, thanks,” I said, before walking out, dragging along behind me poor duct-taped Sam and Owen with two different shoes on (both for the same foot, no less).  Good thing she didn’t see THAT, huh?

So.  Sam’s glasses are broken and taped together with duct tape, Owen has managed to lose his shoes, but only one of each pair, and I don’t get paid again until Friday; why does this seem to be bothering everyone in the world except me, Owen, and Sam?  It isn’t as if the duct tape is a huge piece obscuring his vision.  No, it is a little tiny piece that simply holds the stem in place.  Old Wal-Mart Hootchie Girl wouldn’t have even noticed had she not been holding said glasses in her hand.  And really, Owen is an eclectic little dresser anyway; he is just as likely to have two different shoes on at any given time whether we can find the other ones or not.  That’s how HE rolls.

Wal-Mart visit aside, though, the weekend was quiet.  Sam caught a summer cold, and we had a 363 acre brush fire outside of town, and it was 105 degrees here, so the poor kids asthma flared up something terrible.  He was taking his breathing treatments every hour until I could reach Janet to have a prescription for steroids called in, which made him jittery and totally grouchy.  And I admittedly started getting just a little bit panicky there, too; his lips were turning blue, just around the edges, and while I know well that asthma is serious ALL the time, every once in awhile it hits me forcibly that kids die from asthma all of the time.  After three doses of the steroids and a double dose of allergy medicine (per doctor’s orders, thank you), he was doing better, and by last night was almost completely recovered.  Time to go back to the asthma/allergy guy, though.

What else?  We went fishing last night and didn’t catch a single thing, again, but it was still fun.  Came home and got the boys all scrubbed down and squeaky clean, and we were all in bed by 10:00.  Steve and I had just gotten, um, involvedwhen in troops Owen (and I thought of you, Camille, and how you must have jinxed me!), carting his blanket and his pillow saying, “Sam kicked me out of bed.”  Good thing it was dark, I will say, but damn the interruption!  Besides that, Owen is getting very tall and lanky, and he is a restless sleeper; I think of the three of us, he was the only one who got a good sleep.

As ever, though, it is Monday, and a whole new day.  Work is still crazy-busy, as the other agent won’t be back from vacation until Friday, and it is hotter than the 7 Gates of Hell today.  Hannah was at a friend’s last night and they got caught sneaking out, so there will be that to deal with tonight, and Sam has to get ready for his upcoming week in Seattle; he is flying out next weekend.  I may not be around much this week, but if I am, well, aren’t you the lucky ones?

Friday Fragments-Late Edition

A late edition of Friday Fragments, sure, but since Mrs.4444 is partying with the cool kids this weekend, I think I am going to get away with it.  For more fragmenters, head on over and check her out.

***Okay, overweight adults, fine.  We are all responsible for what we put in our mouths, or maybe we have some medical issues that make weight management difficult; I get that.  What I don’t get, and what makes me sad, is when entire families are overweight.  I saw a family earlier this week at the grocery store; obese grandma, obese mom, and  three obese kids.  The youngest was still in diapers and he was fat.  Not cute little chubby baby fat, but he was walking and his legs rubbed together and his stomach was dimply and jiggly fat.  All three of the kids looked like that, and I just have to shake my head.  As adults, too, we know well what the health risks are, we know what things we should stay away from, and speaking from experience I know well how it FEELS to be overweight- why in heaven’s name would I intentionally put my kids through that?  Call me judgemental, but there is no excuse for that in my opinion.

***Speaking of fat, Eli said this in an email yesterday in response to my question, “What will you do when your dad is gone tonight?”  “what i always do…turn on the tv make some popcorn weigh my self on the scale every morning to see how much i’m gaining lol”  He also told me that he has started running in the mornings AND has discovered that his dad has a set of weights that he is going to start using…”but they are pretty dusty so I have to clean them first.  Don’t think he uses them much.”  A master of understatement, he is.

***Some people have really, really fat heads.  As in they are so idiotic that I am not sure how they breathe.  I saw a friend of mine doing a limp ad shuffle across the sidewalk a couple of days ago, so I stopped her yesterday to see what happened.  She was walking across the street in the crosswalk and some fat-head turned out of the bank parking lot too fast and hit her.  With her car.  And then was all sorts of pissed off because the cop gave her a $60 ticket.  For hitting someone.  With.her.car. 

***It has been a crazy week all week.  In fact, I emailed a friend a little while ago and said, “Work sucks ass today.  Just so you know.”  July is typically our slowest month so all four of us scheduled our vacations this month.  It has NOT been a typical month.  In the last two weeks I have generated close to $10,000 premium for the agency, which is a lot for what I do.  Today, because of two vacations and a funeral, I was the only person in the office for the majority of the day.  And I have a really big fat headache coming on.

***Tan fat looks SO much better than white fat; anyone else ever notice that?  I think it is because the dimples don’t show up quite so well.

All right, that’s all I’ve got today.  For more fragments, go check out that other blog.  She has a whole list of other blogs from there to read, too.

Some Scraps

honest-scrap-award

April gave me this award thingy a few posts back, and even though I have already “done” this one, I liked it so well that I thought I would do it again.  I mean, who wouldn’t want the chance to list 10 honest things about themselves, right?  So the deal is I write my ten things, and tag some other number of people.  The ten things, sure; THAT I can do.  As for the tagging?  Take it if you want it; there are days when fodder is hard to come by, and this does tend to generate fodder.

1.  I have been deleting 90% of the posts in my reader lately because they all talk about BlogHer.  I am so glad that people get to go, I think it would be amazing and a wonderful opportunity to get the hell away from the kids meet some really kick-ass people and to experience in real life the connection that so many of us feel online…but really, if you aren’t going, it isn’t all that interesting to read about what you are wearing and how much booze you plan to consume and where you are staying.  THERE.  I said it.  That said, ladies, go and have fun; go let your hair down and have the best time ever, and I will be happy to read about it when you get home.

2.  It made my heart hurt when we were sitting up at the top on the mountainside on Friday, looking down at all this land that has been taken over by people.  Who, exactly, got to decide, “I OWN this!” and then parceled it off to the highest bidder?

3. I have a daughter who is lost inside, unable AND unwilling to find her way.  She doesn’t want help, she refuses to take the considerable help that is being made available, and we are running out of options.  She failed one of her summer school classes and may have no choice but to go to the alternative high school next year.  I try to talk to her and guide her and that doesn’t work. Therapy doesn’t seem to be working.  I yell at her and be firm with her and THAT doesn’t work.  I feel helpless and powerless to stop the downward spiral she is on.  And it makes me feel like an absolute and utter failure as a parent.

4.  I have had some run-ins with one particular blogger, based on her intense dislike of me and everything I stand for.  Still, I have been reading her blog anyway, because I am concerned and care deeply about her well-being.  So a couple of weeks ago I went in to her blog and she had cleverly redirected my IP address to some fairly nasty site called FuckOff.com.  And I should have been offended and, frankly, a little bit creeped out, but mostly I thought it was funny.  And then I was thinking that if she has the knowledge to enable her to do something like this, surely she should be able to find a fucking job.

5. In case #4 didn’t tip you off, I can be just as petty and passive aggressive as the next person.  I have to work really, really hard to overcome that particular character defect.  And sometimes I just stop trying because there are only so many times you can bend over and get fucked up the ass by a “friend” before they aren’t a friend anymore.

6. The lovely yellow lab we got last summer, Harley, is not doing so well.  She has been old and arthritic since we got her, and I knew going in that she wasn’t going to be around forever, but she is dwindling.  Her right knee joint is so swollen right now that she can’t even get up and down the stairs to go potty without help, and she has a rear elbow that flares up as well.  It makes me so sad to see her, and I wonder if it might be time to start **thinking** about putting her down.  She doesn’t seem to be in much pain, still remains as slavishly devoted as ever, adores me unequivocably, but still: am I being fair to her because I am selfish?  Because I adore her equally?  This is a hard one for me, because as cold and heartless as I can be about some things, well, this one hurts.

7. I think we as a nation take the whole “health” thing a bit too far.  When I was in the grocery store the other night, I saw some frozen vegetables labeled, “Immunity Blend” and all I could think was, “Are you fucking KIDDING me?”  Please.  Eat right, take a vitamin, stop wasting your money on shit like this.

8. I already have planned out the songs I want at my funeral, and how I want to be, um, taken care of when I kick the bucket.  No embalming, do NOT put me in a really nice dress and slap makeup on me-I am going to be roasted anyway, so grab jeans and a sweatshirt and some 100% cotton socks and I will die happy.  Well-if I weren’t already dead.  I can’t decide if this makes me morbid or practical.

9.   If I could get away with it, I would simply buzz my hair.  I did finally get it cut, you know, but I still hate it.  I am LAZY and don’t want to take the extra time in the mornings to DO my hair, and I also don’t really see the point; it’s just hair.  

10.  Every morning I read the obituaries and the court news in the newspaper.  It is a really good way to keep tabs on some of my customers.  Plus I keep thinking I will find out the location of my ex-husband in one or the other.  He nor his wife have ever called back; imagine that.

So.  This actually ended up being more like a Fragments post.  I may have exhausted all of my deep dark secrets on here.  Or maybe I should open it up to have you all ask me stuff you might want to know.  But: take the award if you want it, and have fun with it!

The Vacation in Photos

The "little" rental cabin in which we stayed.

The "little" rental cabin in which we stayed.

 

Eli putting up the tent for Steve and I (thanks again for the tent, BusyDad!).

Eli putting up the tent for Steve and I (thanks again for the tent, BusyDad!).

 

The front of the cabin.

The front of the cabin.

 

Our outdoor kitchen.

Our outdoor kitchen.

 

Making Ice Cream

Making Ice Cream

 

Owen and ball.

Owen and ball.

 

My hat and fake smile.

My hat and fake smile.

 

Eli deep in thought.  Or picking his nose.

Eli deep in thought. Or picking his nose.

 

The moose having breakfast.

The moose having breakfast.

 

The moose.

The moose.

 

Another view.

Another view.

 

Our four wheeling crew.

Our four wheeling crew.

 

The view from the top.

The view from the top.

 

I felt a little like Maria Von Trapp.

I felt a little like Maria Von Trapp.

 

Aunt Lori-Would you believe she is 60?

Aunt Lori-Would you believe she is 60?

 

We fished here, or rather casted and reeled a lot.

We fished here, or rather casted and reeled a lot.

 

Same fishing spot, different view.

Same fishing spot, different view.

 

So there you have it; the highlights of the trip.  There were about 150 pictures on the camera, but I thought I would spare you all the agaony of having to scroll through ALL of them!