Tuesday, June 29, 2010

catch up

Our anniversary we spent going to dinner at Abigail's, going to see Knight and Day at the movies and ice cream before heading home. I mentioned to my boss how much I liked the escargot at Mill on the River. She said I should try Abigail's as it is owned by the same people. The escargot was the best I've had. I followed that with roast duck. Hubby had the mixed grill - fillet, baked stuffed shrimp and grilled chicken. Knight and Day stars Tom Cruise. He is not my favorite actor but the movie sounded the best of what was showing. We really liked it. And even though Cold Stone Creamery suddenly closed we managed ice cream and Ben & Jerry's. We spent the night talking and didn't mention the kids or bio the entire evening. It was such a great night.

This week I am crunching numbers and bank reconciliations at work in preparation of vacation. I have one more day. Thursday will be errands at home - oil change, drop off birthday present to my nephew, pack, clean out the fridge dinner with my parents, etc. Then in the wee hours of Friday morning we hit the road. Yeah!!!!!

Son managed to fail math. The straight A's the last month of school was not enough to pull him through. Summer school - 12 days - 30 hours or repeat the entire class. He's in summer school. And he is paying the tuition. Maybe, just maybe he's learned his lesson.

Oldest and boyfriend celebrated their one month anniversary. He bought her a necklace and matching diamond earrings. A little much I think.

Oldest and son's girlfriend were going to drag their men along with youngest to see Eclipse (the new Twilight movie). The boys want to see it as much as I do. Yuk - never! Youngest has been saving her birthday gift card for the movies since her birthday in April for this big event. We explained to oldest that this is a sister date. They can drag the guys to another movie. With the 5 year age gap - the sisters have little in common at this point. Let them share Eclipse. Oldest went down and bought the tickets tonight. Tomorrow afternoon that's where they'll be. Boyfriend thanked me for getting him out of it. Added bonus.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Happy Anniversary

Six years ago today hubby and I were married. Eloping was my choice but I thought we should include the kids. So we had a potluck picnic celebration. I rented a bounce house for the kids and had bubbles, crayons and coloring books in case of rain. My Dad thought I was nuts and that we wouldn't have enough food. Later he told me how smart I was and that it worked out great. Two friends asked if they could copy me and I attended two more potluck picnic weddings.

I arrived with full coffee urns to set up. Friends tried to hide me from hubby as I mingled before the ceremony. Why? He's the only one who has seen the dress - he's the only one who would tell me if it looked good. So it rained a little bit and we were married in the corner of the fire department hall. Seth was the best man and son was a groomsman. Oldest was my maid of honor and youngest the flower girl.

We said our vows to each other - a mixture of vows we liked beautifully woven together by our friend and JP. Then I turned to the kids, looked them each in the eye and said vows to them. Friends told me later they were OK until I turned to the kids and then they cried.

Pictures were taken quickly so we could change into shorts and enjoy. The sun came out and parents sat on the lawn while the kids played together in the bounce house.

Two weeks later we flew to Vegas with 9 friends for our honeymoon.

Yesterday MIL took the kids for the week end. Hubby took a FU day (the classification for a furlough day) today. Last night I went to full moon Dakini group while he napped before work. This morning he is at a live burn for the fire department. Once the house is burned to the ground we can have the rest of the day (and the night) alone to celebrate.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

It's just wrong

So, the latest news on the bio front. Her niece, her oldest brothers daughter has graduated college and moved back to town. She is now living with bio's younger brother. Living with in every sense of the word. So he's more than 20 years older than her. He's her uncle. And this is perfectly OK. And you wonder why I don't want my children living out there.

Let me say it now, if my brother even laid a hand on my daughter never mind moving in with her you would never NEVER find his body.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Letter from Deena Metzger

An Open Letter from Deena Metzger to Tony Hayward and President Obama:If We Pursue Remorse and Collaboration in Lieu of Blame, We Might Still Heal the Gulf
Let us stand before the bleeding Gulf, bear witness to the great wound we have all imposed, speak grief, mourn, take responsibility, atone, make amends, commit ourselves to restoration, to entirely different lives, all of us, now. We have no choice but finally to act consistently on behalf of all life, all our relations, the future generations of all beings, all the future little ones. Once in a conversation, Reb Zalman Schacter, visionary Father of Jewish Renewal, advised that much would be accomplished if every government negotiation began with mutual grief speaking. Several small events in my own life precede this essay: 1. Last week I unwittingly hurt a beloved student/colleague and publicly apologized.2. I have received apologies and witnessed amends from several people who have completed a twelve-step program. 3. Recently, my husband and I were in a volcanic disagreement. Later, I apologized for being emotionally volatile and he admitted his provocations. We apologized, sought means to avoid future conflagrations, repairing the damage through honesty, laughter, cooperation and genuine love.4. We, and our Daré community, will be hosting an ex-rebel general and an ex-refugee who were once enemies. Now they are co-directors of the everyday gandhis peace-building team in Liberia. 5. Our community has been hosting Fire Circles to Heal War where all war-traumatized peoples, ex-combatants and civilians alike, can speak of the great wound of war, expressing their agony, grief and sorrow. But there can't be healing until amends are made. What are right amends, we ask? Giving more than we can, offering restoration, in kind, to the harm we have done, opening our hearts wide and wider, living with the heartbreak, not denying, not turning away.
* * *The Gulf. A hemorrhage. A heart vein or an artery punctured. The birds, animals, sea creatures dying. Human and non-human lives, communities, cultures devastated. The photos of the oil on water, dark red rising to the surface of the blue. The on-going blood spilling in the Gulf. Our hands are covered in blood, in oil. How can we honorably prepare ourselves so that, by our own prior moral reflections, we call BP, the US Government, Tony Hayward, Dick Cheney, President Obama, and all those directly responsible, to privately and publicly soul search, express unfathomable heartbreak, face the horror of what has been done and the real threat to all sea life? Admitting culpability, those in power will be more able to assume full responsibility and begin the daily, on-going, real and impossible task of making amends and finding ways of restoration. Who is to judge the adequacy of all of our responses? Let the oil soaked pelican, the turtle seeking sanctuary to lay her eggs, the dying dolphin judge.
* * * This is a call for all of us, as we are all indirectly or directly responsible parties, to bear true witness and admit that we have entirely betrayed the future - the pelican, turtle, shrimp, fish, dolphin, whale, the fisher people and citizens of the Gulf, the entire human community, the children, life itself. We are, for the first time in global history, in a situation of absolute common jeopardy. We cannot set up barriers between one sea and another. There is only one ocean. The oil is gushing forth in plumes that are real, large and deep. Far more than the coasts and shores are affected. The entire pelagic ecosystem is imperiled and, consequently, we are facing questions of planetary survival. Carrying this consciousness ourselves, we will be able to listen and hear those in power admit that no one knows how to save or restore the oceans. Yes, let's admit it: No one knows what to do and no president or world leader can acknowledge it without our willingness to hear it. Recognizing this together allows anyone and everyone who might know something to sit down together to meet this crisis. Together. In Council. We have gone far beyond ourselves and acted against our knowledge and wisdom. In Greek philosophy, hubris had tragic consequences for the individual; today it is a global tragedy: perhaps an entire planet mortally wounded. The counterparts of hubris are bluster and blame. Bluster is a lie: "It is not as bad as we think. We will recover. Our lives will continue as usual. The future is safe." Bluster is designed to save face and prevent panic. But it does not change the reality we are all secretly facing.Blame is the antithesis of rigorous analysis, discernment, scrutiny and self-scrutiny. Blame is self-righteous. Blaming distracts us from our own culpability, from the gravity of the crisis and so blaming has become an intoxication, an aphrodisiac, an international feeding frenzy. The catastrophe must be someone's fault. Surely it is BP's fault. Yes. And the government's fault. Yes. But it is also the fault of everyone in between. Yes. Everyone's fault. Yes. My fault. And yours. We allowed a reckless life style to be imposed on us. It was offered to us and we grabbed it. We live by consuming whatever is made available, all our resources. We don't know how to change our individual dependencies, let alone national dependencies. We are still preoccupied with money. Blood money. And Tony Hayward of BP wants his life back.But, alas, finding fault doesn't stop the hemorrhage. We are at a stalemate, feuding and fighting There is no evidence that the spill will cease and no evidence that it can be cleaned up. There is not enough money in the universe to restore the Gulf, to compensate our losses. The sea, the one I know as the EarthSeaMother, and her creatures are dying. I have always wondered how I would live and act, if I thought my life and all life might be threatened. But... if we all face and speak our grief, examine our individual relationships to oil and the innumerable petroleum products and toxins embedded in our daily lives, admit that we have all participated in creating this disaster ... then - chastened - we may be able to imagine and hold the enormous pain, shame and fear that BP officials, petroleum companies, investors, government leaders might not be able to admit, even to themselves: they have created a disaster that could mean the beginning of the end of all life on the planet. Admitting this, we become partners on a planet united in its grief and common jeopardy and authorized to refuse any actions that might cause further harm to the natural world and to pursue all possible safe solutions, should there be any. Such unprecedented alliances, inspired to offer everything, withholding nothing, and relieved of concerns with profit, damage control, liability, power, nationalism, might find ways to save it all for the common good.Who knows but such community grief speaking and unprecedented alliances might, in the realms where miracles happen, find us sufficiently trustworthy to rouse the EarthSeaMother and awaken her own healing potential alongside our united efforts. Let us enter into national and international Days of Atonement, into moral accounting, while giving everything, so that future beings may still be written into the Book of Life. *** Deena Metzger's recent books include Entering the Ghost River: Meditations on the Theory and Practice of Healing and Grief into Vision: A Council, from Hand to Hand Press and Ruin and Beauty, New and Selected Poems; Doors: A Fiction for Jazz Horn; The Other Hand, from Red Hen Press. www.deenametzger.com. deenametzger@verizon.net

Youngest

Crazy hair day is this Tuesday at school. Youngest says to hubby I want to cut my hair like a boy. Hmm! At supper she announces the same thing. By a boy I ask - what do you mean? Like you used to cut yours she says. Ah! I wore my hair short - really short when hubby and I first met - it was a short woman's hair cut. OK, I'll make an appointment. I had her pull pictures out of magazines so we could show the hair dresser. I have always liked her hair short especially since washing it is about all she wants to do. Bio has stressed over and over that it should be long like her split end over processed day glow orange hair. She has jet black hair that is turning gray and she dyes red.

Last night she had her hair cut. It came out really nice. I'll have to get pictures. Then the hair dresser says - I have some leftover highlighter I will have to throw out. Would you mind if I put a few foils in her hair. I'm not a big fan of coloring kids hair but I know the foils will look good and give it some body. Sure! Boy, did that really make the hair cut. She looks like she's been kissed by the sun.

We then headed to meet hubby for dinner. Oldest was at boyfriends graduation and son was with girlfriend.

But, in the morning before heading off on another field trip for school she asks - when are we seeing bio this summer?
You're not going to Arizona this summer.
But, bio said you gave her a list of dates.
Daddy and I gave her the dates we were taking you on vacation. She has not contacted us at all. We are going on vacation, to the Cape and New Hampshire because you are not visiting her.
But, she said....
I'm sorry she made you think that - it was pretty mean of her to say something that wasn't true.

I was wondering when this was coming. Bio has been really leading youngest along. She has a knack for telling the kids what they want to hear (or she thinks they want to hear) rather than the truth. In the course of one phone call she will tell each kid something different. And the weird thing is that they don't compare notes. My brother and I still compare notes and our parents are not lying to us.

And the field trip was fun. I went too. Bad mommy that I am. Three more days of school, one promotion ceremony, and one last Girl Scout event and then we are free for the summer. Yeah!!!
We leave for vacation on July 2. I'll have to tell you where when we get back in case the kids stumble upon this. We never tell them until we get there. All they know is that we are driving and it is somewhere they have never been. I will give them a packing list which includes driving time (they need to bring something to keep them occupied in the car). At this point they have fun guessing. It'll be a trick this year. We are making a one night stop to see the NRA museum before heading to our final destination. I'm so excited.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Field Day

I spent yesterday morning at my last field day. The gym teacher sets up more than a dozen events for the kids and parents run each station. The classes rotate through each event over the course of the morning. I always volunteer to help at an event involving water. The kids really enjoy these. Yesterday was a wet sponge toss. It's supposed to like an egg toss but kids and wet sponges - little control. I had them change it to which side could toss more sponges. Water, sponges and laughter filled the air. I have so much fun at this event.

Exams start Thursday for son and oldest. Good thing oldest knows the schedule. Son could careless. I calmly explained that even though he has buckled down this semester enough to pass math he is a few points away from passing for the year. A good exam grade stands between him and summer school. I think a few days of studying would be well worth the effort.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Moon Time

Our local library had a book sale yesterday. I took youngest with me. Paperbacks were $0.75 and hardcovers $2.00. Youngest found three books and a game for a dollar. Upon her arrival home her brother actually played the game with her. He played again this morning. Best buck I've spent in a long time. I bought a few cookbooks, a biography and Susun Weed's Menopausal Years: The Wise Woman Way. I have read several of her books and attended a few of her classes at the herbal conferences. She is amazing. Her work is fantastic. I'm in awe and a little frightened. If her views are questioned she will come at you with both barrels. You better know your stuff and be able to back it up because she does.
When I arrived home I felt some slight cramps. Is my moon time coming? A trip to the bathroom and I realized it wasn't coming it was here in full force and I had bleed through everything like a clueless teenager. That would explain the reason I felt like a slug and that walking on the treadmill was like walking through cement. I spent a good part of the day reading my new finds and sipping nettle infusion. I did manage to make supper over the course of the afternoon. Even cooking took effort.
Son had his girlfriend over and oldest her boyfriend. The house was filled with teenage laughter and youngest was included. I'm so glad they enjoy hanging out here. We had lime marinated chicken on the grill, potato salad, tortellini salad, quinoa salad and broccoli salad. The salads will carry us through a couple of nights of meals. I made raspberry bars and boyfriend brought chocolate chip cookies that his dad made.
As I read Susun's book I felt relief, comfort and hope. Each month is a new adventure for me but it's really been different lately. When I asked my gyno about menopause she said I was too young. I don't think I'm going to stop bleeding anytime soon but the hormones are changing. They are gearing up for the change. Susun's book confirmed what I've been feeling lately. The journey has begun. A journey I look forward to. I'm not in a rush I just embrace this wonderful miracle called my body. I'm still learning its ins and outs.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Random

On the fat front:
So, since we decided to start checking in weekly at the balance program I have lost 1.3 lbs. I have walked 10 days and logged 26 miles on the treadmill. I feel better even if the pants still don't zip. I'm headed in the right direction. I've been reading the book Younger Next Year and loving it. Several other group members have read it. This one is aimed at men about to retire but the principles are universal. There is a women's version which I was loaned and will read next. Hubby has been much more supportive this time around. Yeah! I have an appointment with my doctor for an annual exam Sept. 13. (It's been 4 years) This gives me three months to loose the 20lbs. I was supposed to. I need some competition even if it is with myself.

Kids:
Oldest:
Has a new boyfriend. They met the week before prom. He treats her well, takes her places and cooks for her. He's a nice kid. Seems a little immature but I haven't decided if that's the age and I'm really getting "old" or if he really is. The school year is winding down and she is looking for a summer job. She has applications out and a few more leads to follow up on.

Son:
He has pulled his math grade up to passing this semester. He's had straight A's for 4 weeks now. This reinforces my theory that he was failing on purpose. I'm not sure if it will be high enough to pass for the year yet. What he is failing is skills seminar otherwise known as supervised study hall. I thought failing gym took the cake but I have to hand it to him this really is the frosting. He's been working more with my brother doing roofing jobs. They are so much alike. But, brother dear has grown up and come to learn the pains involved in hard labor and is encouraging son to get an education. ;o)

Youngest:
Oh my is she growing up. She has joined the ranks and started her moon time cycles. She was so nonchalant about it. And she is developing a little bit of a smart mouth. As annoying as this may be I see it as healthy. She is voicing her opinion and that is good. And so refreshing from my other children (I worry about them). Crazy hair day is coming up at school. And she asked if I could take her for a boy's hair cut. She has been very clear about growing it long - that is what bio wants. By boy cut she means a short hair cut like I used to wear when hubby and I were first married. Perfect - because she hates taking care of her hair.

Seth:
Called his dad in a panic. He has been unable to get an ID because they won't except his birth certificate. He only has the hospital copy. He was born at the military hospital in Korea. Bio has all of his original paperwork. He lives with her and we have been letting the two of them handle it. He didn't really care much until he was let go from his job for not having ID. He lives in AZ. On top of that grandma must be complaining that he is not paying rent. He claims bio has sent letter after letter to Korea with no luck. (Really, no kidding) After 5 minutes on the computer I found all the info you needed to send to Vital Records in Washington, DC. A letter notarized at the town hall and a check were off in the mail later that day. I hope they can act quickly. He also asked us to send him $300.00 a month to live on. We still hold his savings account. It has very little in it. We have told him we will send it to a school, insurance, landlord, etc but he will not be getting cash. Especially since bio is on his checkbook. He funds the account and she spends it.

Other stuff:

Tonight oldest and I are off to the Thomaston Opera House to see RENT.
I am officially done with the fire department in Winsted. I start as secretary for the Barkhamsted fire district in July (they only meet once a month). And I only have one more event to finish with my Girl Scout career forever. {Can you hear the angels singing and fireworks going off?} And the leader who claimed she had youngest talked into joining again - so wrong. Youngest came out and said again that she is done. Ready to move on.
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