page 3,287 from my Journal

August 16th, 2011
I can hardly believe that school starts tomorrow. I am both excited and a little sad. I always enjoy the first month or so but then after that, sometimes the days seem to drag on a bit here and there. I am often very happy when Tori comes home from school and fills my ears with the days events while I sit and marvel at what an interesting person she is turning out to be. When she is recounting the highlights of class around a mouth full of milk-soaked cookie, I am also reminded of only yesterday, when her older sister sat in the same dining room chair and shared HER day with me as well. Now, my oldest is entering her second year of college while living on her own in an apartment she pays for an hour away from our home. Sometimes it seems the universe lives and breathes in that distance and I worry constantly for the day when it grows even further. But I take solace in her beauty both outwardly and inward. She is a remarkable young woman and I am proud to be her Mother.
The beginning of school seems to always mark the passing of yet another year more so than any other day of the year. Perhaps that’s because I know it’s only a few years until I am sitting in those bleachers at the high school, waiving away at the last baby bird to leave the nest. Thank god that day is still some years away.
I do look forward to the stolen lunches with my Husbeast, the quiet afternoons on the porch and the smell of a wonderfully clean house all day long. I do enjoy the time alone that school affords me – but I also know that one day, that is all that there will be and I wonder if it will be so enjoyable then ….
My wishes this year for my children are;

  • for Sarah … I wish for her to not have to work so hard between her two jobs and for understanding to happen easily for her in some of her classes. I hope that she finds time for herself and keeps her goals in mind and doesn’t forget to be human once in a while.
  • for Tori.; I hope that all of the distracting-ill-mannered children are placed in the OTHER class (lol). I hope that she finds someone to confide in that is honest and trustworthy and her own age. And I hope that she learns to forgive herself for being human once in a while.

And to all the other Mothers, if you find Father Time, please let me know. I’d like to negotiate with him ……..

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Let Me In

I just finished reading this book last night and even though I posted it to my book shelf here on my blog, I just had to write more about it. The story is written by a Swedish author named John Ajvide Lindqvist and the book I read is the English translation of his story. It was also made into a movie, oh which I have not seen yet. I don’t know if I want to or not because the book was so engrossing that I can’t imagine anything being cut from it. The writing style is much different from what I’m used to and the cadence of the characters is somewhat had to keep up with at times. That is, until you get far enough into the story that it no longer matters. lol.

I think what I loved most about this book was the fact that the main character, Eli, is a child vampire. Not so much that he/she is a vampire but that Eli is a child. It’s a different perspective for an age-old tail. I also loved watching the relationship between Eli and Oskar develop. This is a must read if you like horror fiction. But do be advised that it’s pretty graphic and sometimes down right gross. Just the way I like ’em. lol

“I’m at my best when you do it for me.”

I shake my head (yet again) at the antics of faux parenting. Our daughter Tori (who is 11) wanted to go to the public pool today with her friend. On a 103* day I think it’s the perfect place for them to be! So we drive over to her friend’s house so they can ask for permission to go and her parents say that she can only go if I’m going to sit there with them. I tell them that no, I wont be there … that tori is a wonderful swimmer and she is perfectly fine to go by herself. They know that this is always the case because she’s gone with tori before and I’ve told them THEN that I don’t go. Anyway, the girls really want to go together but they remain firm on needing an adult to supervise. So I suggest that one of THEM go and sit with the girls for 2 hours while they swim. They instantly changed their minds and decided it wasn’t so important to have a parent go along. :-/

This makes me go mental inside because how is that you seem to know what is best for your child as long as someone else is doing the job, but the very minute you have to get up out of the chair you’ve been in all day, it’s a different story. I just don’t get it. I don’t mean to be so irate about it but it just amazes me that parenting seems to an option with most people. And to top it off, I had to pay (AGAIN) for her to go with Tori. There is something seriously wrong with this arrangement.

I just finished reading “Thank You For All Things” by Sandra Kring tonight and it was a really great journey. I have never read this author before but she has a nice easy flow to her writing and you just keep going, page after page, without realizing it. This particular story is not something I can relate to but I still found it captivating. I think what I liked most was the fact that it’s incredibly interesting to witness the story through the littel girl. We see the unfolding of the history of dark secrets and family tragedies through the eyes of a curious eleven-year-old.   Though Lucy can seem much older than her years, she works wonderfully as a narrator.  Seeing the story through another’s eyes would make it entirely different, which is why it works so well.  It is an extremely interesting point of view, and I definitely recommend this read.

Here is the summary of the story:  Lucy McGowan is a 11-year-old genius with a photographic memory, an even more brilliant brother, Milo (IQ: 180), and a single mother, Tess, living in Chicago. What Lucy has that her brother doesn’t is curiosity and people smarts, a quality that propels her to unearth the hidden relationships and buried secrets of her family. An maginative and headstrong girl, Lucy finds herself on a grim family visit to her sickly, estranged grandfather in Timber Falls, Wis. Witnessing her mom’s unshakable hatred for her dying father, Lucy begins to investigate her family’s past; her love for the sick old patriarch she knows is challenged repeatedly by what she finds out about the angry, abusive man he used to be.

 

Stop trying to change the other person …

I was watching Dr. Phil this afternoon and it was all about couples who are driving each other crazy. They argue about every little thing, back and forth and never seem to have a meeting of the minds. I thought that it was going to be an hour full of counceling and deep motivational advice. Instead, it just came down to one simple idea. “Stop trying to change the other person” and “stop taking the fact that they don’t do what you want them to so personal.” He said that in a relationship, you KNOW the person you married and you just have to STOP expecting them to be someone else. Stop blaming dissappointments, regrets, unfinished business or projects or even relationship failures on the other person. Because guess what? It’s not their fault entirely. Everyone has a role in their relationships and for some people that role is to enable their spouse so that they can martyr themselves. It’s a cycle that is set up by both parties and each takes a role in making it function or disfunction.

Now, a look inside my own marriage. I have been married for 22 years this coming January and we are the most peacable couple I know. And I do NOT count couples who say they never argue. That’s either bologna or they SERIOUSLY have no idea how to conduct a relationship. People NEED the space to vent and get upset and to know that there is someone who can hold down the fort while they go mental for a few minutes. If you’ve never argued, then you’ve never let the other person have all of you. I digress …….

Matthew and I have a wonderful marriage because I believe in a few very simple ideas. 1. NEVER hang on to old baggage. It does nothing but take up free rent in your heart and mind. And if you keep it around to use as ammo in an arguement, then you’ve truely never been able to lay it to rest. 2. Accept your spouse for who they are. This is not easy to do sometimes. But you have to TRUELY love them as they are. Bad habits and all. If you like a clean house and they could care less, then guess what …. you married a slob. And guess what else? They married a neat freak. One is not better than the other. They just are. If you can come to an agreement about it then great. If not, then just get past it. You didn’t marry the carpet, or the dishes or the uncut grass. You married a PERSON. I also think that the success of the relationship has a lot to do with whether or not you married the RIGHT person for you. Sometimes people get it wrong and no amount of trying will ever make it better. In this case, just have the guts to get out and try again. 3. ALWAYS find new ways to fall in love. And lastly, realize that we all change from year to year ….. get to know this new person. Their interests, dislikes and favorites. Cultivate your relationship with this new information.

Take responsibility for what’s happening around you within your relationship. If you are unhappy, you are not being victimized by the other person. You are activily CHOOSING this life on a daily basis, so own it or move on.

I am immensely happy in my life and my marriage. It has taken a lot of work from both of us to get to this point and it has been worth every effort. If you are as happy as I am, then I raise my glass to you and say “welcome to the club.” If you are not, then I hold out my hand and say “there’s room for more. Get after it.”

Our Little Tree-Hugger

There is a property on the next street over that for whatever reason, was allowed to grow up pretty badly with weeds and out of control hedges. When the house became vacant a few weeks ago, the owner decided it was time to clean the place up a bit and hired a contractor to come in and lay waist to everything growing. Well, unfortunately for them, our little Tori was playing at the house next door with her friend and when she saw what they were about to do she freaked out! Apparently, back behind the over-growth was a Peach tree and a cherry tree. She begged and begged and pestered those poor guys until they agreed NOT to cut down the two trees! Lol. She even climbed into the peach tree and brought down some fruit to eat as evidence of the importance of keeping these trees. We drove past the property today to check on it and all of the over-growth is gone and two fruit trees stand proudly in the front yard. All nicely trimmed and looking amazing. 🙂

I am rich beyond measure!

Tori and I sat down to dinner tonight, just the two of us. We had all the things you are not supposed to eat on a regular basis. lol. Hamburgers, fries, coke and warm apple pie. But the best, most wonderful part of the meal, was how she just kept talking and talking and talking. I heard about all the stress points of the day, the highlights, the funny’s and even the mundane. As she was carrying on, I couldn’t help but think how lucky I am to have such moments. And to have a child that WANTS to talk with me and have me laugh with her and cry with her and be mad with her.

My Husbeast as always financially supported our family entirely on his own. I have been able to stay home every single day of our 21 years of marriage. And I have ceased every single one of them. I haven’t let any slip by me. And I am so thankful for the life I have and for the opportunities I have had with our children. It makes me the richest woman in the world