Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Alice in WeHoLand - a public safety announcement

And my new favorite song - totally stuck in my head today!

Monday, October 27, 2014

Monday Morning Weekend Wrap Up

Yet another busy weekend, though I did get one morning to sleep in.

After work, went grocery shopping and then the Halloween costume hunt began. Spent the rest of the evening traveling around with Corky and BFF looking for Halloween costumes for the party taking place with a theme of bad guys / good guys. We were mostly successful, following too many stressful choices, and a desire to not spend a fortune. Had dinner out with BFF and two concurrent text discussions. One was a request to shoot a wedding, and the other was a discussion about Christmas and where they will be spending Christmas Eve overnight to Christmas morning. I ended up with a bloody nose from the stress and we had an early bedtime in preparation for Saturday's activities.

An early and rainy morning to catch the local band review parade in which The Oldest marched, the band taking first in parade, and first in concert. The Oldest even had a solo in concert on baritone. I am very proud of him, and it was nice to see that his father is as well. After the band review, Corky and I went to Ikea to get some ideas about bedroom furniture, specifically a bed. Came home having a better idea of what styles we can agree upon, as well as a mattress firmness we both like. That's when the hard work began. We cleaned out the garage. Got rid of a bunch of old clothes and linens and shoes, cleats, etc. Broke down some of the empty boxes and packaged most of the rest for garage sale and donations. This took the entire rest of the day. Too tired to cook, we had a delicious Mexican dinner with margaritas.

Slept in, finally. Did get right to it when we woke up. Started back in the garage with sanding the end table I bought at least a month ago. While I made my hands buzzy, achy and numb, Corky cleaned the house, including dusting, vacuuming, and straightening up The Youngest's room. She also rearranged the kitchen counter, freeing up some space. We ended up at the hardware store for more supplies, and were visited by Corky's roommate, and my sister. Dinner was huge salads, and we relaxed the rest of the evening until The Boys arrived.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Outside the comfort zone

So last night I did something out of my comfort zone. I was a debate moderator for a neighboring school board candidate forum. Four candidates for two seats, two candidates are incumbent. I was a little nervous at the beginning, but it went really well. I was able to choose a wide range of questions and piggyback a couple questions based on candidate answers. The candidates were all very nice, and I am glad I didn't research them beforehand, as I was able to remain completely neutral. I wish them all good luck.

I was asked by a PTSA President and friend because I am a PFC President in the town next to hers. I met a couple of other PTSA members, and the principal of the host school, which also happens to be the middle school I attended. Overall, I was pleased with my ability to think on my feet, and appreciative of the opportunity to stretch a bit in my abilities. I had a really good feeling the rest of the night.

Oh, and I am grateful for my darling girlfriend, Corky. She was able to give me the one thing this week that alleviated my anxiety and calmed my frayed nerves. I love her for knowing what I need, even when I'm not sure what will help.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Tableau Tuesday

So some pics of this weekend's activities:

Created with flickr slideshow.

Also, yesterday Diane was on my mind. ALOT. I ran across her husband's name on a check that came through for fundraising, and I head Billy Joel and Elton John on the radio (two of her favs). It was one of those days where I would have called her if I could because my children were driving me crazy about their homework load, and I am PMS. Bad combo. And I haven't had a decent night's sleep in over a week, the weekend was too busy and tiring, and I have too many unfinished projects and issues to resolve.

I miss her. Her laugh and her ability to understand exactly what I am going through.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Monday Morning Weekend Wrap Up

Another really active and busy weekend.

Picked up The Youngest from school and got him a hair cut. Went back for The Oldest and Corky, headed to the mall and bought new dress clothes for The Boys. $$$ later we were set for the weekend and jazz band gigs.

Up at 3:30 so that The Oldest could board a buss for a band review. Their band took 2 first and 2 second place trophies, and looked and sounded good. The Youngest, Corky and I followed, watched the parade and then we all wandered the boardwalk, ate, and hung out until awards. It was really awesome spending time together as a family. The weather was perfect! Stopped for dinner on the way home, and should have skipped that too, as The Boys were too full of boardwalk junk food. They fell asleep on the drive home, and once back, The Oldest headed directly to bed, the youngest had a shower and then bed, followed really shortly by Corky and me. We were out of the house for about 13 hours, all of the daylight hours, plus. Almost all of that time was spent walking and standing, and my feet, legs and back sure felt it!

Celebration of Marriage at the Cathedral with my family. A full mass with the marriage blessing, and a reception following. My Mother enjoyed herself, and my Dad seemed at least satisfied. I really do not enjoy Roman Catholic ceremonies. Too much incense, too much burying the value of women beneath their role as helpmate for men. Maybe I am just not as forgiving and patient as I could be, but when married. straight, catholic couples are lauded for being the two to bring life into the world, I can't help but wonder how exactly the bishop and priests view the role women truly play in the propagation of their followers. Maria enjoyed parts of the homily, but having grown up attending church every week, I am over it. I am over feeling like I am not welcomed into this community, not just for who I love, but for having a failed marriage that was performed in the church. Add the condescending view of anyone who does not fit into the requirements of the church, and I am so done. People wonder why I have a dismal view of marriage and organized religion, and it is this - the unequal partnership, the snide derision for those that refuse to make it work (for whatever reason) while applauding and celebrating people who remain together, regardless of circumstance (abuse, neglect, etc.). People who believe that every sacrifice of their humanity to the power of their spouse will bring them closer to God. Willing participants in the dance, teaching their children the same "family values" for generations to come. Yes, I read between the lines (or in this case, listen), and I do take it personally. I do not appreciate that I have to re-educate my sons on the way home so that they understand that mutual respect and love of one another is what binds us all to each other. Does this mean I am not a spiritual person? No it does not. I find my soul filled with love of humanity and our earth, our circumstances, and our ability to survive, thrive and cooperate. I find my worship at the ocean, in water, and salt air. This is what fills me with love and energy for the long hard job of living.

I hope you all have a wonderful week ahead!

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Wednesday and lots of learning

I took 3 training classes at work today and I actually learned something in each of them. I also learned a few real life things (in the broadest definition). When you put a stop to someone who is overstepping their role, they take it personally, glare at and or scold you, unnecessarily punish your child, and generally behave in a borderline unprofessional manner. The "Live Long and Prosper" hand gesture originated in a Jewish Benediction that is not supposed to be viewed by members of the Synagogue. Also? my BFF volunteers me for almost everything she is involved in at school. My mother is unreasonably obsessed with a celebration of marriage this upcoming weekend (still). If the dogs are not let out to pee at around 10pm, they bark at 3:30am to be let out, and then I cannot fall back asleep for an hour.

My brain may actually be full at this point.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Just your average Tuesday

Well today was interesting. BFF was around alot, which she hasn't been lately. Had a meeting at the middle school which ended with at least one pissed off person. Met with a middle school counselor about The Youngest's failing grades. Made my open enrollment selections. Did more laundry. tried to pry the brown plastic lump from the vase, gave up and recycled the lot. Was delayed several times by several well meaning people, causing me to miss time with Corky. I'm tired, I want to read and then sleep. Thankfully, The Boys had very little homework, and both completed it with zero grumbling. More hugs today, and thinking about my abundant life. Grateful for it all.

Monday, October 13, 2014

I tried to burn down the house Part 3

In my seemingly endless quest to determine the most tale-worthy way to nearly burn down my house, I discovered that cramming two lengths of rope light into a cheap and large glass vase, then leaving those on for more than 10 minutes will cause the rope light to melt and the glass to heat past the point of common sense. Thankfully, Corky went into the bedroom prior to it bursting into flames, but not before meltdown. Now I have a lump of brown plastic in a vase, with no foreseeable way to remove this solid mass. I am thinking that a boat motor blender might cut through the mass enough to dump or shake it out, but it could also break the glass. Damn that $5 vase, and old but still working rope light... Oh, I also have a room that smells of deadly plastic fumes, a wide open window and a fan on high. Maybe a hair dryer blowing on the lump will get it reeled enough to pull it out. Maybe I can go and find another vase, and scrap the whole thing... Here I was so proud of my frugal attempt at a bedside lamp. I decided that I should probably switch to led lights since they are cooler.

Monday Morning Weekend Wrap Up

Now that Corky is back to work on desk duty only, she actually has weekends off, so this makes the third weekend we could spend together.

Corky spent the night and we just chilled out and relaxed. I took apart and moved part of The Oldest's old twin bed and a part of the bunk bed set The boys have had for a REALLY long time. Am looking to sell it and see what I can recoup.

Woke up and finished moving The Oldest's bed, vacuuming his room and moving the futon into a better spot, which meant moving the bookshelf and the cat box. Went with Corky and her roommate to Urban Ore looking for ideas. Saw some stuff we want to try, as well as buying a drop leaf table, now making 2 projects I need to do... Had lunch and rushed home so that I could drive My Sister's Youngest to Homecoming at his high school (my alma mater). While there, Sister gave me her old kitchen chairs (AWESOME!). We picked up his girlfriend, took pictures, and I waited while they ate at a friends. Then I dropped them at the school, picked up Corky and met another couple for dinner and dessert. Back home and exhausted!

Up and out rather early with Corky and her roommate to the downtown antiques fair. Wandered for about 5 hours, and bought one non antique (of course). Will be making it into a bedside lamp because I need yet another home project, though this does not involve sand paper, screwdrivers or stain. We'll see how it looks soon. Dinner at home, shower and a nap after crying from pain and exhaustion. The Boys arrived at around bed time, with some additional work needing to be done on an essay for The Youngest that is due tomorrow.

In bed by 10:00 and really looking forward to sleep.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Monday following a BUSY weekend.

I've had The Boys for nearly a week while their father is out of country. So of course this weekend had to be full of activity!

After a harrowing school week wherein The Youngest was discovered to have 7 missing assignments, instead of the 2 I initially thought, and the end of the progress grading period, and working on all of those assignments, and Friday detention to turn in the final 2 assignments worth a collective 510 points across two classes... I had him do more homework. I know, I am horrible (at least according to him), but I am also not giving up on this kid. He worked REALLY hard, and we argued tirelessly about the assignments, but when it was all said and done, He ended up with 485 out of 510, with only the lateness counting off his grade. I capitalized on the good feeling he had for turning in quality work, and had him write the assignment due Monday. Oh, did I also mention that it was hot like Sub Saharan Africa from Wednesday through the weekend? It was, which made the anguish over homework that much more difficult and exhausting. There were many tears and hugs and some shouting. BUT, he did it all, and now sees the importance of completing the assignments on time. Also, he gets that what is expected of him is much greater than in Elementary School. He isn't happy about that aspect, but he is working on accepting it as fact. Also went shopping and found a new bike helmet and lock for The Youngest so that he can start riding his bike to school. The Oldest brought home a bass drum to practice for drum line.

Spent the morning with The Boys completing the weekend homework. Spent the afternoon at the Tech Museum of Innovation with Corky, The Boys and a couple of people from our Meetup group. The Boys had fun, but Corky less so because The Oldest insisted on telling her how to do stuff and explaining everything, which didn't really allow her to experience the place in the way she wanted. Had I known that was the case, I would have had a talk with him on the way there. Once the museum closed, we walked to Gordon Biersch for dinner. Their Bier Fest is delicious and the food was great.

A relaxing morning, and dropped The Boys at my Sister's for the afternoon while Corky, her roommate and I went to a surprise 30th birthday party for Corky's Niece. It was fun - a brunch and bocci ball. I'd met many of the people there, and it was fun to see Corky's family again. They are all so warm and funny, and welcoming. While we were there, The Boys went shopping for homecoming attire with my Sister and her Oldest. The Oldest sent pictures of various shirt/tie combos for the 8th grade dance, occurring in June... Of course, I will likely pick them up for My Parents' anniversary reception in a couple of weeks. Fell into bed after a busy and hot weekend, glad the heat wave will be over mid-week.

Enjoy your week people!