Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Almost a full year later

wow - a week less than a year since I last posted!. So, what's happening here? The exact same stuff as last year. Which is part of why I stopped posting here. Also, as with my other blog, posting became something I was making myself do, just to keep a "current" post on top. I still like the idea of blogging, but I'm just not making it a priority in my life right now. One day...

Monday, September 20, 2010

A bit geeky

During our homeschool session, 4 yo GR asked me how high I can count.
"Well, in theory I can count to 999,999,999,999,999,999" (aren't we both glad I didn't put that into words?)
"How long would it take you to count that high Mommy?"
"A very, very long time"
"OK but HOW LONG?"
let's put some math brain cells to work and see...
just supposing I could count 1 number per second, which I can't, and supposing I never needed to pause for anything - ever - it would take MORE than 31,709,791,900 YEARS to count that high. So, sorry GR, you will not be getting a demonstration... Trillions of years!

What is after quadrillion anyway?

Monday, August 30, 2010

Finally - a good weekend

So, we've been in our new arrangement for more than a month. We've had 6 weekends now and this was the first one that wasn't a disaster. There are plenty of things to complain about still, like how he didn't do any household chores, but he did feed the kids dinner on Friday and breakfast on Saturday while I was down for the count with shoulder/neck pain. Most of all, we didn't argue. There were a couple of very brief spats due to differences in "communication methods", but that's it. Of course this may have had something to do with the fact that he was busy much of Saturday taking care of his elderly father, but I'm going to mark this in the win column and leave it at that.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

2nd 1st day of school, crazy week & maddening weekend

Yes, second first day of school. As in my first child had a second first day of school one week after her first first day of school. Confused? Well, some of you know that I'd been homeschooling and that I do Montessori Method. If I had chosen to do homeschool with no other agenda, I would have been simply eclectic, however, my public school system has a Montessori program in 3 of it's schools. The thing is that the rules of the county make it very difficult to get in unless you live in the neighborhood. But, there is a slim chance which widens ever so slightly as the kids get older IF they've had previous Montessori experience - hence our Montessori homeschool. So, this past year I had an odyssey traversing the administrative offices' policies, personnel, red tape, and their physical office move. It culminated in a frustrating phone conversation where the woman ultimately told me, I can't give you the actual information you're trying to find over the phone, but I can tell you it is very unlikely you'll get in this year. Which of course meant at the end of the business day on the second day of school, I get a call from the department that handles this stuff. Only, she called my cell so I didn't get the message until the next day and she never answered her phone or returned calls so I finally went up there (thanks Violin Mama for watching the kiddos while I did it!) and found out that we did indeed get into the Montessori program!! So, I had to scramble around to get all the paperwork, fill in forms, meet unknown deadlines, find new school supplies and prepare my child for a big change. Not to mention, we now had to be leaving the house at the same time as we normally sit down for breakfast. As you may have noticed in the photo, she's got a big 'ole bagel in her hand as we head out. Also, she's not wearing her bird shoes because only one of them was where it was supposed to be and 10 minutes of searching didn't yield it up. ugh.
So, a great portion of my week was spent trying to figure out the least time consuming way of making our new commute - 1.5 hours total drive time plus time in the carpool line, which has been just a couple of minutes in the morning but about 35 in the afternoons. BUT SHE'S IN!! (and now that it's been a week she seems settled)

Then there's the part which I didn't speak about in my last school post... my marriage.
I believe I may have mentioned here that I would be happy if Joe got a job out of town for a while to give us a break. Well, my wish was answered and he now works out of town during the week. And you know what? It really is easier here without him. No, I don't get a break, but I also don't have all the extra work that having him around means. Cleaning up his messes, doing his laundry, dishes and well, him. But the last 3 weekends have been really hard. I just spent some time typing out the "highlights" of his bad behavior, but it was getting tedious even to me and I'm the one who needs to vent, so I erased it. It was as it always is, his words are one thing and his actions are another plus he is in general a slob. At this point, I guess I honestly do have to look at this as my problem and figure out what to REALLY do because clearly his words and actions are never going to match up. I'm not married to the man that exists only on thin air, I am married to the man that does the actions that I find unacceptable. Divorce is so tempting, but it is not just me here. I know, "they" say don't just stay together for the kids, but really, what else is there to do? My fears of the unknown and hopes for the future kept me from returning to school (we chose for him to return instead and he's barely had a job since then - a decade ago), so there's the low income potential for me and I just don't believe I can rely on him to pay child support - one of those words vs. actions things. And frankly even if money weren't an issue I don't feel I can subject the kids to his solo parenting. Aside from all the problems that would cause them, I'd have to be the one to try and straighten it out every week so we'd be back on the school schedule. I'd always be the "bad cop." It's bad enough that I'm the only one who's always a parent, but at least here I can keep us more consistent so I don't always have to be the "mean" one. Although, I wouldn't be the mean one since he can usually only spend about 15 minutes with the kids before losing his temper. I've timed it. He lasted a whole 30 minutes on Friday before he laid down on the couch and yelled at the kids to be quiet and leave him alone so he could "finally relax" & watch baseball. He's so lonely, so bored and misses us so badly during the week, but I guess 30 minutes is all he really needs to fill the void. Blah, blah blah right? You're tired of hearing me say this crap? Me, too.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Crazy Weekend + 1st day of school

Well, not crazy but so busy I thought I might go crazy. For one thing TODAY IS THE FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL!!! So of course I had a ton of last minute things to do. And with Joe's new schedule the weekends are already jam packed.

I wouldn't normally show these here but I'm just amazed at a few things about these shoes.
1. That AT specifically requested robins and rejected the idea of a cartoony or falsely colored bird
2. That I've never painted birds before, not even to practice for these shoes, but think that came out pretty good
3. I painted something that I didn't want to immediately toss out

A few weeks ago I was dreaming wistfully of the day I could go to BlogHer, but I never really paid attention to when it happened so I didn't realize until yesterday that even if I could go, I still couldn't because it falls on the weekend before the start of school for us. That being the case I didn't even have time to log on for BlogHer@Home. I will visit all of you sweet ladies who paid me a visit though.

I tell you what, getting up before 6AM is kicking my butt! I'm trying to help myself out by putting cooked breakfast and dinners in the new freezer, getting the kids an alarm clock and setting one downstairs to give us a 5 minute warning. Another thing that I'm sure all of the parents - and teachers - would have found helpful is if the school had told us that the start time this year is 10 minutes earlier than previous years. Yeah, that's right. Even the teachers didn't know about it until this morning. I'm trying to pass that off as a side effect of chaos caused by furlough days leaving the teachers and staff only 2 pre-planning days to get everything together and not take it as a foreboding sign for the rest of the year.

AT is in 1st grade but this is her first time at "real" school. We did a combo of homeschool and short day school last year. Poor thing worries about so much. Among other fears, I had to help her talk through what to do if there is a tornado or if the power goes out. In the end I got a little smile and wave as she walked down to her class with neighbor E. Not a tear was shed, by either of us, though we both got close.

The rest of the crazy part of the weekend had to do with Joe, which should be no surprise. But I'll save that for another post instead of adding it onto this one.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

While the blogger is away

stuff gets done.
On the bright side for my husband:
Joe is about to start a contract position so the next 4-6 months are covered cash wise.
His portfolio was spotted by an HR rep for a college and he was asked to submit a CV and a brainstormed list of classes he could teach at in Industrial Design department - in Singapore. While I thought it might be a great adventure for 2 years he said "Not Singapore and not with 3 kids". It was a boost for him though.
His work was featured on an industry website this week. (His work has been in magazines and on TV before but those were client jobs and not purely his own creation)
At this moment he is working on commissioned art for a national ad campaign. For a company you have all heard of, but which I won't mention because the associated item hasn't been made yet and he may be under a confidentiality agreement. Which is really neat because ad agencies usually use graphic artists. They contacted him directly from his main portfolio. That damn thing which I've complained about is finally starting to pay for itself. Starting to.

He finally agreed to let me use the empty and for sale house to have an indoor sale. Like an estate sale, except I didn't have to die to sell off my junk.
On that note, he finally hired someone to repair the squirrel damage at that house.
He also agreed to go to Ikea with me to buy some organizational furniture (read shelves, armoires and dressers)
He deep cleaned the master bath - that was only 6.5 years in the making. (I've cleaned it during that time of course, but it was on his self-imposed to do list since I was pregnant with our eldest child and he just accomplished it this weekend)
He repaired the various damaged spots in the sheet rock all around the house.

Which meant:
I finish sanded lots of sheet rock patches, cleaned up LOTS of dust and primed all the spots and the rest of the kitchen and stairwell going down to the basement. I don't particularly like the tan from the living and dining rooms in there, but I like it better than white primer and I like it WAY better than the blue it was. You know since I have had 2 tone orange cabinetry for the last few years. Light orange, dark orange and BLUE? No thanks. This is the only picture available that shows it. And my messy countertops.

And now we're also preparing to rearrange the house and use some of that new furniture. Which also means we're finally taking the TV out of the living room. Which I thought I'd be fine with, more than fine with, but now that it's here I feel slightly apprehensive. Silly right?

Finally, I have nothing to do with it, but my brother proposed to his girlfriend, making her officially my FSIL. They're hoping to get married in October - of this year! Since she doesn't have nieces or young cousins I may be back in "flower girl dress" sewing mode very soon. I'm going to ask him tomorrow when we get together for dinner and talk about our plan to build beds for my kids (YAY!)

So, that's not all but it's good enough for now. I've got to perform emergency surgery on a frog's red thread nostril and then get back to painting. If you don't have to, don't ever paint your own ceilings. This is my 7th one and I loathe it, especially since it's so high up over the stairs.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

My son hates me

No, really he does and tells me so often. Then as soon as he's calmed down he tells me he's sorry and that he loves me. I think I'd be surprised by the statement at any age, but at 2 I was shocked, especially since neither of his older sisters have said it. Of course, the shock was tempered by the unbearable cuteness of his 2 year old voice saying "I hadge you Mommy." It actually took me a few repeats to understand him the first time he said it.

My reaction is always calm but my response varies: "I love you anyway" "It hurts my feelings when you say that" "We don't tell our family we hate them" "That's not nice" "[blatant ignoring]". Today we hit a new high (or is it a low?) when seemingly out of the blue, AK walks into the kitchen while I was making sandwiches and announces, in a rather cheerful tone, "I hadge you Mommy" I ignored him. He continues "I hadge you if you Spiderman... I hadge you if you a robot." Ignoring. "You hear me? I hadge Spiderman Mommy." ... "I hadge Robot Mommy" ... "I hadge you Mommy" Finally I respond, "Did you say you hate Spiderman Mommy?"
"And you hate Robot Mommy?"
"But I thought you LOVED Spiderman and robots."
"Yes, I do."
"Why do you hate me? I love you."
"Because, yeah."
"It makes me sad when you say that"
"I don't make you sad. I fwighten you Mommy. I send a big robot to fwighten you!" {giggle}
"I'm not afraid of robots, but my feelings are hurt when you say you hate me. Do you want to hurt my feelings?"
"... ... I WUDGE YOU MOMMY!"


I was nearly ready to post this on 6/12/10 when I went off to shower and we got the bad news

In the time that has passed since I started this post till now an interesting twist has occurred. Even though robots are #1 in AK's heart he has taken to calling Joe or I a robot when he's angry with us. "You a robot Mommy!" I don't know which I find funnier, the hadge or that he calls us his favorite thing in the world when he's angry.

I clearly have an emotional little guy on my hands I just hope we're equipped to handle it. And, perhaps more importantly, to teach him how to handle it.

Added 7/6/10: Since then, not only am I a robot when he's mad at me, I'm a "Bad Robot". I find this all quite funny, I keep that inside, but I'm still not sure that it's a good thing!