Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Son's Birthday

Today is son's 14th birthday. Last night I made his double chocolate mocha triffle before heading to the fire department for an officer's meeting. Today I made corn chowder. He picked the meal and the dessert. With his belly full, gift cards in hand and a new barrel/scope for his paintball gun life is pretty good.

Youngest visited bio yesterday. Guess who crawled in bed in the wee hours of the morning with a bad dream?

Tomorrow is my last day of work for the week. I don't go back until the 6th. Nice how I plan these long week ends for myself. A friend may be coming over to learn soap making this week end. I have some supplies to get before hand. It will be a fun time plus incentive to get a third batch of soap in this winter. I'll definately have plenty to get us through until next winter.

I made plans to visit the farm the end of January. My girlfriend moved to upstate NY 6 or 7 years ago now. When I got married I gave her my old bed for her spare room and kept my husband's bed for home. So now, when I run away to the farm I get to sleep in my own bed - really. I have not been up for a visit since the spring. We play a lot of phone tag. It will be really good to see her. We have a relationship that just continues where we left off. The farm is a horse farm. She has two horses of her own and boards horses and gives lessons. She also works as a pharmacists assistant full time. But, her real job - her passion is her land scaping business. When she lived close by I would work for her and get paid with plants. Yeah! Now, I just get them for presents. Her land (25 acres) is beautiful, her gardens are awesome and she has lots of trees just asking to be hugged. My favorite is a corkscrew willow. My husband even drops me off in front of the tree now so I can hug it when I arrive. Over a year ago I got a cutting from the tree and have a baby growing in my backyard. It's not big enough for hugs yet.

Happy Birthday, Son! I love you!!!!

Monday, December 29, 2008

Books

I received an american express card gift certificate from one of my clients. I was told by my office mates not to spend it on the kids. Like that would happen. Not with my present. With my hard earned money, yes! So after Women's Temple I headed to Borders. A friend was headed in the same direction so we met up for hot cocoa - triple chocolate something. Yummy! I found a date book at 50% off, a CD - Stephen Halpern's Chakra Suite, and two books. One is called collage journey - I've been inspired to make an art journal. A little crafty stuff inbetween the pages of my written journal. And to the end I found a big silver, spiral bound sketch pad with the word CREATE accross the front. Perfect. I wrote a few pages of dedication and I have my first coat of paint and glue drying. A few hours wandering among the books with a good friend and cocoa. Now, that is my idea of a great day.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Book Reviews

I'm still trying to tweak my book shelf to show the books I'm reading as well as the books I've read. I'll figure it out eventually. I finished Dreams from my Father by Barack Obama last night. I liked his writing style. He divided the book into three sections, origins, Chicago and Kenya. The Chicago section was a little slow. I'm not sure if it's because I couldn't relate at all or - enough already. It picked up pace and readability again in the Kenya years. It really shows how knowing where you came from influences where you are going.
I started a The Heretic's Daughter a while ago. It hasn't hooked me enough to keep the book on the top of the pile. I think because I'm anticipating that the conflict in the book is going to annoy me.
I was given a pile of books by a friend to read at our last Pagan discussion group. I started Eat, Pray, Love last night. It had mixed reviews but, reviews mean little to me. She's divided the book into three sections of 36 stories(beads) each. Snippets work for me as I tend to read more than one book at a time. I've read the intro and the first "bead" so far and enjoy it enough to keep reading.
I was also gifted with a signed copy of Matthew Wood's new herbal. I'm savoring this like a fine wine.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Great Give A Way

The Secret is in the Sauce: Win a Keurig Platinum Brewing System and $50 worth of K

Family

Today we go to my brother's house to celebrate the holiday. Christmas day at his house is chaotic to say the least (and not much fun). I avoid the place now. It is much more enjoyable to visit after the holiday.
It's funny - I called him on Christmas morning and he was complaining about my parents. They are at his house all the time and drive him nuts. He has the true grandbabies in my mom's eyes. Mine were just obtained by marriage. Plus my youngest is 10 and my brother's kids are 4 and 20 months. Plus, my brother is the son. I may be the oldest but, I am a daughter. Life did not begin in my parent's eyes until the son was born. But, that is another story. I will say despite all of that I like my parents and only wish they would visit more often (loving them goes without saying and I beleive you can love someone and not like them at all). But, back to the funny thing. Funny in an odd sort not funny in a LOL sort of way. I loved Christmases growing up. We were the only kids in the family so everyone came to us. Grandparents and uncles came and spent the night. We woke to a house full of family to watch us open presents. It was wonderful. As we got older and grandparents passed to the next life the tradition stopped. By then we knew Santa was a spirit and not a jolly man in a red suit. I don't remember any aweful Christmases. Not until I was out on my own and my parents had to deal with my brother and I have significant others and dividing time. My brother said he's trying to get my parents to go South after Thanksgiving so that his kids can have a good Christmas without my Dad. That since he was 11 Dad has made Christmas something aweful. Huh? This coming from the man who has made it so I avoid his house like the plague on holidays.
And today will be a short visit. My sister-in-law has to work tonight at 5. We can come around 11 and we'll be gone so she can have time to relax before work. OK Now, you know why I spend my holidays with my husbands family. I feel much more welcome.

Creamy Brussels Sprouts

I have to admitt I got this out of Better Homes and Gardens sometime this fall. It was a real hit at Christmas and Thanksgiving and converted a few who don't like brussels sprouts.

Creamy Brussels Sprouts

4 slices peppered bacon
2 lbs. Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved
¾ cup chicken broth
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp black pepper
¾ cup whipping cream

In a 12-inch skillet cook bacon over medium heat until browned and crisp. Drain on paper towels, reserving 2 Tbsp. drippings.
In skillet add Brussels sprouts to drippings; cook and stir over medium heat 4 minutes. Add broth, salt and pepper. Heat to boiling. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, 5 minutes. Uncover; cook 2 to 4 minutes or until liquid is nearly evaporated. Add cream. Cook 4 minutes or until thickened.
Sprinkle with crumbled bacon.

Friday, December 26, 2008

The Day After

Christmas day I slept in - I didn't get up until 5:50 AM. For me that's sleeping in. Hubby was still at work. By the time he arrived I had the apple pie in the oven, the creamed onions done, soup started,laundry started, the presents under the tree and I was getting ready to vacuume. He showed up with DD coffee in hand (decaf of course). The kids weren't home yet so I was able to get my present early....
Hubby napped until the kids arrived home at 10.
Everyone was thrilled with their presents. Santa was a hero for more than a couple of minutes. Pictures taken, presents put away, showers taken and new clothes put on and we were headed to North to mother and father-in-love's. Sister-in-love and her whole family were there. We all chipped in to get dinner on the table and had a wonderful feast. Let's see there was:
prime rib
mashed potatoes and gravy (potatoes from their garden)
butternut squash (from their garden)
brussels sprouts with cream (she called to get my recipe and had me cook them when I got there)
corn
creamed onions
celery stuffed with cream cheese
stuffed mushrooms

and for dessert - apple, pumkin, blueberry and lemon merange pie

The cousins tried on grandma's Santa suit and I have pictures of a lot of very skinny santas.

After a nice relaxing visit we headed home. We were all stuffed and skipped the soup I had put on in the morning. My girlfriend had given me the Christmas Eve ham bone and I made ham and bean soup with carrots, celery, diced tomatoes and parsnips. I can't wait to eat. Seth did have soup before we took him home so his mom wouldn't have to feed him.

Bio picked the kids up Christmas Eve at 3:30 took the back to her place and went back to bed because she had to work that night. Seth made sure youngest was tucked in early. Santa brought the kids two games. And explained that she was making them shirts. She is a very good semstress when she wants to be and if she finishes a project. Son's will be camoflage, and Seth's will be lepord print (odd for a twenty year old), I'm not sure what she's doing for the girls. With the money she spent on fabric she could have bought them each an outfit so they would all have something to unwrap. But, hey that's just me. Glad she's making memories for her kids.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas Eve

The kids are out of school until January. My parents came for breakfast this morning. I made baked french toast which soaked in cream, eggs, vanilla ans maple syrup all night. I also made hash brown pototoes in the oven laced with bacon, onion and cheddar cheese. And sausage gravy and buttermilk biscuits. A really yummy, stick to your ribs celebration.
Presents were exchanged, the girls made snowmen and grandma and grandpa were off until spring. They will be at my brother's house tomorrow and then they will head south to Florida until April.
Scalloped sweet pototoes are in the oven for tonight's open house at my girl friends. Bio's present is wrapped and waiting to go along with a plate of cookies and fudge. No idea what time she is coming. She didn't ask to pick the kids up early so it should be 3:30 but you never know. They will be back tomorrow morning with Seth in tow.
Hubby is sleeping soundly. He went to bed after breakfast. Tonight is his last night of work for the week.
So, the afternoon and evening will be spent relaxing and waiting for Santa to arrive.

Monday, December 22, 2008

90 minute delay

The kids had a 90 minute delay to finish clearing the roads. Yahoo! That meant I could go in to work early. This is always a good thing because then I can leave early. I had to leave really early today to go to a dentist appointment. I had what I could only describe as a hole in my tooth next to the gum line. With fear of all sorts of problems I found out that it was just an old filling that had popped out and I was fixed in no time.

I brought a plate of cookies, a plate of fudge and banana bread to work. My co-workers put a pretty good dent in the goodies by the time I left. I dropped a bucket of assorted goodies for our paid driver at the fire house. I have two more buckets to deliver if I can coordinate a meeting time. Son's excited about dessert because I have magic cookie bars for the family. Hubby said those could not leave the house.

I picked youngest up from tutoring and let hubby sleep. She has no homework as they only have a half day tomorrow and then they are done until January. So, she suited up and headed out into the snow. She had to remake her sledding track as the winded drifted snow into the old path.

I have a chicken and rice dish in the oven that is taking forever to cook. I hope it is done before oldest has to go to fire drill.

I've been reading and writing about hot chocolate - I'm going to have to make a batch tonight to go with dessert. or is that dessert?

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Snowed in

Baking is complete. The fudge is out of the fridge softening so I can cut it into cubes. I have my trays and containers ready to fill. My taste testers approve of everything. Yes, they are home early. Yeah!

Bio picked the kids up at noon Friday in anticipation of the storm. Today with the snow coming in a steady stream I was not letting her drive them anywhere and I was not waiting until 7:30 to pick them up in the midst of more snow. Hubby called and picked them up at 10. He had to drop oldest friend off on the way and son brought his friend home as he lives in walking distance. This means bio picked up 5 kids in a 4 passenger car on Friday - but that is another story.

Youngest is out playing in the snow. She will come in when we drag her in or she gets really hungry. She out shaking down the trees so the weight does not break their branches.

The snow has canceled winter solstice gatherings and the gator parade. I will shower and throw on my sweats and read the afternoon away (or needle point, or both). While the banana bread baked this morning I switched laundry over, vacuumed and cleaned the bathroom. Nothing like a clean house to make you feel good.

My FD Christmas party was last night. Ah, I felt a little old or should I say mature. There is a big age gap in members. The young men were to cheap to bring their girlfriends and so formed a big drinking circle. They stacked beer bottles and glasses on top of the center pieces until they were in danger of toppling over. They danced with each other and didn't balk at us recording their stupid antics on film. The worst were the few that thought open bar means gorging on booze to excess. The captain of one of the engine companies was shut off and then spent time in the bathroom making friends with the porcelain. His wife was supposed to take him out the side door which was close to the bathroom. Instead she brought him through the main area (must not have wanted to walk in the snow) and he emptied his stomach in the lobby. Moments like this I'm so proud to be a member of the department.

Aside from that my handsome hubby danced every slow dance with me - and there was a lot of them. He even suggested we break the ice and start the dancing. My group in the fire department didn't get drunk and had a great time dancing and laughing.

And youngest just made me a liar coming in because she's cold. I think I'll go make her some hot cocoa.

Blessed Yule everyone!!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

check, check, check

I feel so accomplished this morning. Thursday night I did half of my grocery shopping in anticipation of snow and lack of hours in Friday. Friday morning I caught up on e-mail and blogs, started laundry and balanced the check book and paid bills. Then I had a fun breakfast day with a friend. We stopped by the music store and bought some rattles. I'm so excited. While I was gone hubby took the kids to Dunkin Donuts for breakfast. He was going to run out for donuts and I suggested he turn it into a daddy date. He said I always amp up his ideas. The kids loved it.
On the way home I stopped and got a new cell phone for oldest and stopped by the town hall to be sworn in as Justice of the Peace (needs redoing every couple of years). I called to say I was on my way and bio was already here. I made her wait until I got home so I could give oldest her phone. She was picking them up before the snow hit. As much as I dread the kids having to spend extra time with her - it was the safe thing to do. The woman can barely drive in the sunshine.
I dropped the phone and headed out to finish grocery shopping. It was noon and the snow hadn't started yet. It was in full swing as I emerged from the store two hours later. I unpacked the groceries and then took a nap. After supper I started my holiday baking. So far I have:
Chocolate fudge
Peanutbutter fudge
Cowboy cookies
Chocolate Chip cookies

I still have to make:
Peanutbutter cookies
Spritz
magic cookie bars
banana bread

I'd make fancier cookies but I've found few appreciate them. And, I give most of the cookies and fudge away so I'm making favorites of the recepients. The banana bread is for someone at the fire house. When he tried my banana oatmeal cookies he got all mushy about his grandma's banana bread. He told me how he used to hide the bananas so the would turn and she would make him bread. Baking for others kindles my holiday Spirit. And, I'll even send a plate to bio's Christmas Eve 'tis the season to be charitable.

Friday, December 19, 2008

things that run through my mind

Hubby's home! Yeah!!
In anticipation of the huge snow storm we are about to get there is no school. I'm not surprised and kind of glad. I was going to go back to sleep but decided to enjoy the quiet and a cup of tea instead. I'll nap later. If the snow is really bad I will have hubby call bio and tell her we can bring the kids or she can pick them up when the snow stops. I don't trust her car in good weather.
Now she claims she can't pay hubby the money for youngest's fall activities because she needed it to have surgery. Supposedly cysts on her breasts. Now, any one else I would feel bad for. Her, unless I see stitches I won't believe her. Great mind game - the kids feel bad for poor sick bio and daddy is so mean expecting her to pay her share when he is so rich.
You can tell it's her week end - youngest's attitude has changed and the lying has increased. The night visits have stopped. Next week after two days with bio she will be crawling back into my bed. This phase will pass. Son's attitude used tweak the closer the visit got. He was just cranky. Now, I think he is numb. And yet, because they sprung from her womb and there are no physical signs of abuse she can see them. Ah, but the emotional scars run far deeper and take longer to heal (if they ever really do).
Oldest is happy - she has a pay as you go phone bio bought her. Oldest pays for the minutes now that she is working. It costs her $25.00 every three weeks (if indeed all the money is going to her phone). I can add her to my plan for $10.00 a month with unlimited calling. She really liked that idea. I will pick up her phone today. Boyfriend is gone visiting relatives for two weeks and I'm sure she wants to talk to him. At least I don't have to worry about him sleeping at bio's this week end.
My lunch date was changed to a breakfast date this morning. It's so good to connect with friends. And tomorrow I spend the morning at the spa. Ahhh! I have my fire department prom, I mean Christmas party tomorrow night. Sunday is the Gator parade - I think weather permitting. And I'm looking forward to lots of cookie baking this week end.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

cookies

Bio did not pick up youngest. She has realized she has an option and she chooses not to see her. Youngest didn't even ask for her. She received the forms to take cookie orders at girl scouts. She's not allowed to start selling them until Monday. They have a new carmel cookie that goes great with coffee. I have to finish the boxes still in the freezer before we buy any more.

After Girl Scouts I go to the fire house for a meeting. The chiefs are meeting with each company individually. I used to date one of the deputy chiefs a life time (OK a decade ago). He mentioned that twice in one day he saw me and I did not bring cookies. I'm known at the fire house for baking cookies. Several more comments were made through out the half hour meeting by him and others that I should bake cookies. They have a meeting Wednesday for the area chiefs association. HINT, hint, hint. And so, last night I baked a batch of peanutbutter cookies to bring to the meeting tonight ( a certain deputy's favorite). OK, I'm a big softy and a sucker for those big puppy dog eyes.

Seth, is coming for Christmas. He has made a point to ask hubby about our plans. He will be dropped off with the rest of the kids Christmas morning. Funny, the last time he made a point to talk to us or see us was his birthday. Me thinks he's after presents.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Sunday

I went to women's temple in the morning. I was the only one to show up so Nora and I held circle. That place grounds me so well.

Youngest did her rough draft while I was gone. I went through it with her and all she needs to do is copy it over before the 22nd. I had her prep supper and then the girls and I were off. Boyfriend didn't come over - she din't ask. They just spent hours on the phone. I took them to Vernon to hear the choirs. They had the adult and youth choirs as well as the handbell choir. It was really good. The girls want to go back in February to hear the Hartford Chorale.

We got home and youngest finished up the thai chicken, shrimp coconut soup. It was pretty easy to prepare. Oldest and son picked out their next dinner menus. Son will make chicken corn chowder - he's my soup man - and oldest is making chicken something out of the chinese cookbook.

Today hubby and I have the day off together. I've got laundry started (again) and he's on the way to the dump. At 11 we see the lawyer about updating our wills. Then I have Girl Scouts this afternoon. I would really not be upsett if she decided this is her last year. Oh, did I say that? We are going to the dude ranch in the spring. I went with oldest a few years back. It's a fun trip for the girls. She went in 6th grade which is what I recommend. Youngest is in 5th. There is a HUGE difference between 5th and 6th. My girlfriend went with 5th graders - it is a baysitting trip. Read this next sentance with a whine in your voice. But, the leaders daughter wants to go this year and she's sold enough cookies to pay for it this year. So, we go this year. Now, I'm whining. We don't have the circle to sell in like leader's daughter does. I can't sell 200 boxes at work or to family and then mail them around the country. So, youngest does not have as much money banked for her trip. Oh, and I have to pay for me as well. Did I mention I've spent more years as a leader than I did as a Girl Scout. I didn't think it was fun as a kid. I always wanted to join the boy scouts. My brother did such cool stuff - hiking, biking and camping. We make crafts.

Wow, what a tanjent. Sunday was a great day and girl scouts is only 90 minutes out of my day. It will be interesting to see if bio picks up youngest. Last year she picked her up after girl scouts if it fell on her day. This will be the first time this year. But, she hasn't picked youngest up yet this year from any after school activity. She might not have known it was an option until soccer season this year.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Mmm quiet still

It is Sunday morning and I'm sipping ginger tulsi tea and reading my favorite blogs. Son is the only one awake and he is quiet. I love these early morning hours alone.
Friday I awoke to the kids having no school. Hubby was out on patrol and it was windy (very) and rainy at our house. I called hubby - he said trees were down all over in the higher elevations - higher than us. I had a clear shot to the valley and to work. Yeah! With the kids still sleeping I could head to work early which means I can leave work early. YEAH!!! We had power which is really nice - otherwise no showers or flushing toilets.
The full moon Friday night was beautiful. Hubby was home. Youngest woke me up with a nightmare - she didn't try crawling in because of hubby. I lead her outside to the big moon looking down on her. I tucked her in and the moonlight was peaking around her blinds. That soothed her and she drifted off and slept the rest of the night.
We all slept in. I made french toast with the challah mother-in-love gave us.
The explorer's Christmas party started at the bowling alley. Half the kids could not bowl (including oldest)and we put the bumpers up for them. After three games we headed to Fuji's habacchi for dinner. The show and the food was great. The other advisor and I split some sushi. Hubby rented movies for the other two kids and got pizza. He's there hero.
Today youngest must finish her book project and make us dinner. Oldest wants to have boyfriend over because he is leaving for a few weeks to go back "home" to Phillie. I'd like to take the kids to a seasonal concert this afternoon. Oldest had a soar throat yesterday so we'll see how the day plays out. Everyone cleaned yesterday so that is out of the way.
And we have hubby home for the day with us.

Friday, December 12, 2008

What am I thinking?

Yesterday I scheduled myself off for no other reason than I only work three days a week. I decided with finances a little tight and the electric bill a full $70.00 higher than normal that I'd work an extra day. I lasted five hours - the threat of ice at home made me leave early. The kids all had a half day and the radar said it was freezing. I made it home just fine and the ice hit much later - thank Goddess. Any way, maybe its having almost two weeks off and coming in to actually have work on my desk but the thought more than once today crossed my mind that maybe I should work four days a week. My boss is swamped and I would have plenty to do with her stuff. The extra money would be nice. I'm so tired of playing creative bookkeeper. Hmmm! I kept my thoughts to myself - don't want my boss to get any ideas - or too excited.

Oldest talked on the phone so much to boyfriend today that the phone is dead. Drives hubby nuts. I remember those days far to clearly. My dad used to set a timer.

Kids had no school due to ice knocking down trees and wires all over the school district. Youngest acyually got a jump on her book project - I left word to do so. This is the only week end we have them before the project is due so guess what we'll be doing this week end?

Youngest said we have to tuck her in - not the other way around so we have to stay up until her bedtime. It is hubby's first night home and with fire calls today he's been up since 5:30 yesterday. I've only been up since 5 this morning and I'm beat. I'm not sure how he does it. Nineteen months and he can go day shift. I'll have to get used to sleeping with him. Now, we sleep in shifts. And that may put an end to youngest crawling in with nightmares from bio.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

tagged

Annie was kind enough to give me the MARIE ANTOINETTE AWARD!!! and no, it's not for people who are good at chopping off heads. This award is for bloggers that blog about real life. And no one does it better than Annie.



Now the first part of this award is that i ask my readers to leave me a comment, and ask me ANYTHING. so leave me a question and i promise to answer. (no questions from anonymous, though!!! you want to ask a ballsy question, have the balls to leave your name.)



the second part of this award is that i nominate the following 3 bloggers who must pass it on to 3 or more bloggers. Or not, depending on your aversion to blog awards. but these are bloggers on whom I can always count on to give me a wonderful peek into their REAL selves.

Mrs. B
Anita

Rose

Back to Work

You can tell I'm back to work by my absence from blog land. I'm off today but going in any way. My boss was on vacation the same week as me and she needs help catching up. I'm pretty caught up already though I have work to do and that feels really good. Plus, I could use an extra days pay.
Kids were at bio's this past week end so I've had a night vistor three days this week. Nightmares. This week end we have the kids and hubby is not working. Saturday is oldest's fire department holiday party - bowling and out to eat. I'll be there as advisor/treasurer. I love to bowl so this should be fun.
Sunday I thought I'd take the girls to Vernon. The church I attended when I lived there does a music series. They have a handbell choir as well as other choirs playing this week end. If I beleived the theology this is the church I would still be going to. I just love the people and the atmosphere. I still keep in touch though I moved twelve years ago.
Jacob Marley - I knew John didn't sound right.
Sammy, our wonderful, old black lab decided that dinner was not enough. She pulled her bag of food out of the closet and chowed down during the night leaving a big hole in the side of the bag.
Oh, and I woke up to find hubby had washed the dishes. I just love him!!!!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

A Christmas Carol

Friday night started Christmas in Riverton. The little theatre group in town performs A Christmas Carol. I have wanted to take the girls for years but it always falls on bio's week end. The girls said to buy tickets this year and I could drop them at bio's afterwards. So, Friday night the girls stayed for dinner with us then we headed to Riverton. It is so charming the way they have the streets and shops decorated. We visited the glass blowing studio and visited by the bon fire with friends before heading to the play. The ghost of John Marley scared the dickens out of youngest. They did a great job with the play. The girls really liked it.
Saturday was my company Christmas party at the Aqua Turf. The food was plentiful and really good. I ate way too much and didn't even touch dessert.
This morning my parents came with me for a trip North to my in-laws. We then all headed further North to Ozzie's. They have homemade corn beef hash and we had a lovely breakfast. We then headed back to the in-love's for a visit. Hubby decided to go to rope rescue traing instead. They only train once a month and they want to see what they can do before the snow flys. I came home around noon, had a small lunch and napped the afternoon away. Hubby went out for a couple of chef salads for dinner.
Overall it was a pretty good week end.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Christmas wish list

Anyone who knows me or my parents knows you must put your wish list in early. OK, when I was a kid 4th of July was not to early. Start of school is more my speed. I was done shopping by Thanksgiving and wrapped this week other than a few minor things. Part of it is my genetic make up and the other part (the big part) is that I do not want to be in the throngs of stressed out people at the retail stores in December. If I do go shopping this month it is with the knowledge that I don't really have to be there. That mind set makes all the difference.

That being said, enter Seth our oldest son. Seth who is twenty chronologically and about eight otherwise. He lives with bio. And as much as I love him and want what is best for him he frustrates me. He slipped through the cracks of the no child left behind. I got him too late, bio had him too long. He really should be in a group home setting but his disabilities does not qualify him for any aid. He's a nice kid, polite, would give you the shirt off his back and run any errand you set him on without question. But, he eats, sleeps, plays video games and thinks that a job will find him. He would be a perfectly happy homeless person as long as he received an occasional meal and had a place to sleep. He would miss his video games.

Last night when Hubby picked up the kids from bio Seth met him at the door. First time he has talked to my dear hubby in two months. Seth never called on his birthday or Thanksgiving. He never responded to our Thanksgiving invitation. Any way he says to hubby, "Do you know what size jeans I wear?" Why? "I'm making my Christmas list." He hands hubby a scrap of paper with one thing on it. It is a book(s) that he wants. He's hooked on the Japanese comic books and will read the series over and over and over. (I can't quite understand - I rarely reread books).
He must have realized its December, Christmas is coming and bio can't afford books (or rent, or utilities or......).

As hubby tells me this I inform him of Seth's pant size. Hubby thinks that they might be big as he's lost weight. Little food in the pantry will do that to you. Too late I said that's what he has under the tree along with a shirt and a 5x7 picture of the six of us. We had new family photos taken in October.

OK, I've been miffed at Seth's treatment of his father since he got back from Arizona in May. He didn't tell us he was back; we had to find out by running into him. But, he's treated hubby like crap since I've known him now that I think of it. As Seth can barely think for himself bio speaks through him. It is really creepy. Seth only says hi to Hubby when he needs something. I don't plan on delivering his presents. Call me petty. Give me a good reason why I should. I will listen to more objective voices. The kids all know he has presents under the tree. I'm sure the message will be conveyed. They can sit there and rot for all I care.

OK, the venom is spilled onto the page and I can let go and have a pleasant day.

Tagged, "When you put a teabag in a cup and hot water, you're making an infusion."

My Friend Annie at writers, witches and words oh my tagged me.


here's the Rules:

* Grab the book closest to you. Now. * Go to page 56.* Find the 5th sentence.* Write that sentence as your title.* Copy these instructions.* Tag 5 other friends to play.* Don't go looking for your favorite book, or the coolest one you have - just grab the closest one.unfortunately, my closest book (roanoke by lee miller) only has a list of names on page 56. the fifth one down is "joan warren." im not sure this constitutes a sentence, but going off in search of the next closest book seems like a violation of the Rules. so "joan warren" it is - and here's who i tag:

I'm on my computer which means I'm in my office which contains my herbal reference books not the books I'm currently reading which are next to my bed. I'm in the middle of the following books Dreams from My Father by Barack Obama, Heretic's Daughter and Eclipse by Stephanie Meyers. The book nearest to me is Healing Teas by Marie Nadine Antol and page 56 is an illustration of decoction procedures. So, my sentence is from page 57.

Now since I'm new to this blog site and am not sure who reads here other than a few people Annie already tagged I'm picking the first five people who read this post. Please leave me a link to your site in your comment and I will post that at a later date. Thanks for playing and reading my blog.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Bananas

The meatloaf started with three ponds of ground turkey meat. I added sauted onion, celery, crimini and shitake mushrooms, thyme and rosemary. Then some parmesan cheese, egg and breadcrumbs. Hmm! This over ripe single banana was just staring at me. I can't make bread or cookies with one banana. I mashed it up and in it went. Add some moisture and a hint of sweetness. Everyone gobbled it up and had seconds. I have one tiny piece left. When they found out it had a banana in it my hubby just said, why does that not surprise me. It really was yummy.
Poor youngest came down in the wee hours of the morning. I think she tried to crawl in but hubby was there. He does not wake up coherent in the middle of the night. He was really confused about dressing and putting her back to bed. I let him fall back to sleep and I tucked her back in. She must have forgot to ask if he was working last night.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Never bored at my house

Washed the glass on all the pictures today. I've really had time to clean the obscure things this week and it feels good.
A friend came to lern how to make soap this morning. I now have a batch of almond and a batch of bay rum soap setting up.
I called and talked to my parents. My Dad and I discussed among other things how he prepaid for his and Mom's funerals. I have to make one phone call when the time comes (may it be a long time coming) and that is it. My Dad is the King of organization and efficiency. I love the fact that we can talk about death, funerals and final arangements without any problems.
I shopped in my closet for a dress for each of the Christmas parties coming up. Hubby had to get them all down from the very talk dress rod in the closet. I donated a couple to the thrift shop pile and tried on a couple of contenders. I'll wear the black sleeveless sheeth with the embroidery on the front to my work party. As hubby said they haven't seen it. I will wear the cute red number to the fire department prom, uh I mean Christmas party. It still has the tag on it. I bought it a year ago on clearance waiting for an occasion.
Hubby once again tried to cash bio's check. Once again the bank said no.
I confirmed my plans for tomorrow. A date with a girlfrind to go to Yankee Candle. I have nothing I need or have to buy so I can really enjoy the looking and the company. That reminds me to pull her book out that I borrowed and read.
Oldest had meatloaf parmesan at the resturant the other night - ever since I've been craving meatloaf. I love meatloaf. So, tonight you guessed it - meatloaf.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Monday

Presents are all wrapped. Those going outside the house are under the tree. Those inside are hidden for Santa to deliver Christmas Eve. Though none of the kids completely believe in Santa - the jolly fat man in the red suit - they believe in the spirit. The tree went up yesterday while the kids were home. Youngest decided to help. And I didn't wince or readjust ornaments at all. OK, not until this morning and all I did was turn them facing outward. Big break through for me.
Three loads of wash while wrapping and talking on the phone. I feel so much better when something is accomplished.
I felt even better after my massage this afternoon courtesy of my husband's birthday gift to me way back when. He even paid the tip so all I had to do was show up. Ahhh!!!
Youngest started her tutoring today after school. She goes three days a week until the end of February. Bio had visitation today. I got home from my massage at 3:30 to no kids. I assumed she scooped the older kids on their way home from late bus and left. Nope! She didn't know where any of the kids were. She did pick the older ones up eventually and then brought them back to the house to drop their stuff and find out where youngest was. Mind you, I gave her the letter two weeks ago about the tutoring with the dates and times on it. Son asked what time tutoring was over. I asked if he was writing a book. I said all I wanted to know is if I was picking his sister up or his mom. You of course, Kim. OK By the time the kids did what they needed to do she pulled out of the driveway at 3:50. And drove by the school 5 minutes away. Tutoring went to 4:15. She couldn't wait (I'm sure she had no idea what time it went to).
I am elated that youngest spends one less day with bio. I'm still in amazement that a mother would choose not to see her daughter. Youngest was a little out of sorts that it was me and not bio again. Of course she followed me around the house the rest of the night. We cuddled up on the couch eating chesese and crackers and watching TV.
This Friday both girls will be staying with me to see a Christmas Carol rather than go straight to bio's after school. Even oldest wanted me to get the tickets. Wow!
As I tucked youngest into bed she said she wished bio could buy a house. I said I wished she could manage her money and pay her rent. Yeah, youngest said, that would be nice.
Did I ention the check she gave hubby for youngest's school activities the bank wouldn't cash. He asked tonight when it would cash. She claims it should be OK now. We'll try again tomorrow.

My favorite Things

I read a blog a few days ago that interested me. Annie talked about a cute blog topic leading me back to this link (if I did it right). Otherwise you can link to writers, witches and words oh my and go from there. I confess I am link challanged. Any way, she wrote about her favorite things starting with J. I linked back and was given the letter P. I've spent a few days thinking and this is my list in no specific order.

1. Paul - my brother, father and grandfather are all Paul. My brother's son - my godson has Paul as his middle name. I can say no matter what complaints I may have about the men in my family, they love deeply. They are there no matter what happens. It is good to know you have someone you can always count on.

2. Potatoes - I love food and cooking but, potatoes by far are my favorite. I have never met one I didn't like.

3. Print - the printed word is a glorious thing. I just love books - not movies of books, or tapes of books but, printed paper that I can hold a treasure like a jewel.

4. People - the people that have touched my life for a second or a lifetime that taught me, inspired me, sparked some part of my Spirit.

5. Parents - OK so Dad gets mentioned twice maybe because I'm so much like him. It is Dad I sound like when I talk. Any way, parents, my parents, my husbands parents, my grand parents have all been a blessing to me.

6. Pleasure - in all it's glorious forms.

7. Paying the bills - to know that I have worked and earned enough money to pay my bills gives me satisfaction. That there is not an abundance of cash flow and paying my bills is a very conscience act could be part of it.

8. Pampering - I love to be pampered - foot rub, massage, reiki .... and I endulge myself as often as possible.

9. Pajamas - soft comfy pajamas to lounge in. Hmm! I'm on the go constantly but when I do slow down (or crash) a nice pair of pajamas to slip into, a cup of tea and a good book. Ahhh!

10. Promptness - I love people and things that are on time.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Sunday Morning

I love the early hours of the mornng. I let the dog out in the crisp cold air - a frost covering the ground. I make a cup of tea - tulsi red mango. I let the dog back in and come to my office shutting the lights off as I go. As the kids wake up it will take them a little while to discover me down in my basement office.

My girlfriend who had her appendix out Thanksgiving night came home Friday. A little sore but feeling much better than she did.

Oldest and I went to see A Wonderful Life yesterday afternoon. It was - wonderful. The girl who played Mary is the daughter of one of my co-workers. She was great. Afterwards we walked down the street to the Black Tavern for dinner. The food was really good. I had soup and salad - nothing big after days of Thanksgiving leftovers. A white bean and bacon soup - creamy with bits of carrot as well. Spinich salad topped with egg, bacon, red onion and blue cheese. Yum! Oldest had a meatloaf parmesan on to of pasta. She said it was great. As we walked out of the resturant the town of Thomaston was preparing for Santa's arrival and the tree lighting ceremony. The main street was shut down. Oldest and I decided to watch the festivities. Ten minutes later she wanted to go. She said it was because her ankle hurt. I think it was more about her not knowing what to expect - a little apprehensive about going with the flow. So, with only ten minutes left to wait we found our way through the back roads back to the highway home. I have to say she was a little more talkative this time.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Lazy Friday

As I read my favorite blogs this morning I discovered the horror of Long Island shoppers. To trample someone to death to go shopping is just ...... unbelievable.

I spent yesterday in my pajamas until 4 then showered and slid into my comfy sweats. I napped, read, ate left overs and simmered the tukey carcas for soup. It was a really lazy day with little energy. Though I did wash three loads of laundry. Son made sausage and cauliflower soup with sausage bisquits for dinner. It was soooo easy to make and really yummy. I will make it again. I love having the kids find new recipes it really stretches our menu in new directions.
After sleeping for nearly 11 hours I finally feel rested today.

Oldest and I will be going to the TOH to see It's A Wonderful Life - the last in our season tickets. Hubby did buy us season tickets for next year as well but shhh, I'm not supposed to know. Well, actually he had me order them so I would get exactly what I wanted. Very few of our presents to each other are a surprise. His big present is set up in his work room already. It's a huge storage unit for nuts and bolts and the like. He has been so excited that he's been cleaning his man cave for weeks.
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