Dec 25, 2009

Merry Christmas to All!

Wishing you and yours a very merry Christmas!

Dec 1, 2009

Black & Blue Friday

Are you an early riser? Does getting up and dressed at 2:00 in the morning, driving to the local Wal-Mart with one eye open, and a brisk one mile walk from your parking spot through a sea of vehicles piloted by other drowsy drivers just to reach the store entrance sound like something you'd enjoy? Then Black & Blue Friday, the busiest holiday shopping day of the entire year, is for you!
You can skip that mundane workout at the gym today if you agree to participate in this event as it is guaranteed to raise your heart rate, provide a thorough upper and lower body workout, increase your stamina, and improve agility! An undisputable battle of the fittest!
A staggering array of off-brand imported palletized merchandise with prices slashed by almost 25% gleams under the flattering fluorescent lighting and attracts the curious (yes, much like a giant bug zapper) and thrifty consumer.
This position requires that you remain alert and focused at all times. It is imperative that you prepare yourself for the event by locating an large empty case used to package boxes of tampons or adult diapers with the manufactures logo clearly printed on the outside. Carry this case with you, and leave it by the front door prior to entering the store. You must then locate your desired object, brace yourself firmly in front of its concealed display, and await the official unveiling by a highly trained associate. You must not show empathy, compassion, tolerance, or possess any presence of having manners or consideration for anyone other than yourself. Your intent and determination is being monitored at all times. When the low, steady hum from the crowd picks up intensity, you can rest assured that the time is drawing near. Focus on your target, plan your escape route, and if shopping at Wal-Mart gives you gas (odd phenomenon, isn't it?), now is the time to deploy it.
Seconds before the concealing protective wrap is completely removed, you are to drop to your knees and begin grabbing and snatching every last item you are able to hold from the display. Maintain your huddled position until the pallet is empty and the masses have dispersed. Immediately begin to make your way to the shortest checkout line (we recommend the jewelry counter or sporting goods) avoiding any eye contact with teary eyed children or gray hairs, all the while maintaining a death grip on your merchandise. Once your items are paid for and bagged, you are to quickly exit the store from the same entrance you used. Deposit all bags in to the box you discarded earlier, and walk to your vehicle. This tried and trusted technique wards off even the most seasoned parking lot pirate!
Back at the safety of your home, you may unload your packages and assess your bounty. You are not to give more than one of your items as a gift, but are to return the others to the store for a full refund one at a time. The object of this mission is not to acquire Christmas presents for your entire family for pennies on the dollar, but to keep anyone else from doing so. God bless America!

Nov 7, 2009

Twice a week, the girls go to gymnastics class. When they first started attending, neither was very confident of their ability and were not too excited about going. Three months later, both are making wonderful progress! Mason has almost perfected her cartwheels, and Gracie does front flips with ease. The gym at the old Fruitland schoolhouse is loaded with mats, equipment, motivational pictures and posters, and the most patient woman ever who devotes hours on end every day instructing children in dance, gymnastics, power tumbling, and cheer leading. Hats off to you, Anna, for providing our kids with this awesome opportunity to build their bodies, minds, and self confidence. Your generosity is greatly appreciated!

Oct 31, 2009

It's beginning to feel like home!

Our new home is shaping up quite nicely! While the kids were busy setting up their rooms, and Roger getting the garage in order, I felt compelled to tackle the kitchen first. The windows are six feet tall, and I knew that finding just the right curtains was bound to be a daunting task. To my delight, I found some that are purr-fect! With that done, the inspirational wheels were in motion! In no time, the kitchen was transformed into a cozy nook complete with all my treasures and keepsakes. It has become my favorite spot in the house and provides me with the motivation needed to move on to the next room.

Oct 11, 2009

Home Sweet Home

After moving to Payette two and a half months ago, we have found a place to call home! Not too far from the comfort of Grandma's, but out in the country just a bit. It's perfect. It is a historic piece of Payette history, for decades, this landmark served as the Old Washoe Schoolhouse, then later as the Shriner's Lodge. It has been beautifully remodeled inside, and
boasts an incredible view from the bell tower.
A modest 2529 sf of living space and generous open floor plan has rendered this charming icon of days gone by the perfect home for our family. There is something for each of us to love; Roger has a shop big enough to house three vehicles (he has an idea of opening a small business called 'Old School Auto Repair'). The house is located across the street and intersection of the train tracks, (Andrew is totally stoked), Mason finally gets her own room, and Gracie has lots of room to play and grow. As for me, there's a perfect spot for a garden, and the landscaping possibilities that will consume my free time are endless. Ahhh....Home at last :)

Aug 17, 2009

We Done Moved!

The mountains and pine trees are beautiful and I will miss them dearly, but time to move on. The almost two hour commute through the winding mountain highway and the thoughts of navigating my way down the icy blacktop luge come winter has resulted in too many semi-sleep 'jolts' from pondering those terrifying 'what if' scenarios.
We're now in what's known as a Banana belt, as the title may imply, the winter season tends to offer a not-so-severe climate, the small town of Payette. Many of the buildings and homes are very old, of the brick and lathe variety, giving our new surroundings a nostalgic "In the days of the gold rush, this bustling hub of Idaho....." feel. The train passes every hour or so and the blast of its horn echos through the valley. We are, sleeplessly close to the tracks. The local A&W drive in boasts an informal classic car show every Thursday night. The kids and I walk there, get our ice cream cones, and stroll through the flashy assortment of restored muscle cars, trucks, and motorcycles as the sun goes down. Something about this setting runs a close parallel to a childhood memory that I can't quite recall, but the feeling I get is one of a fond recollection that makes me wish my father was here too.
We have sidewalks as well, something I've not had for many years. The well established neighborhood has an abundance of huge trees, many well over 75 years old that cast looming shades over the sidewalks and streets offering reprieve from the afternoon sun creating a sense of tranquil simplicity and complacency. I like it here.
When there is a fire, or other emergency requiring responders attention, a city wide notification ensues which consists of loudspeakers placed throughout the town that emit a series of loud siren blasts. The number of blasts alerts those who know the code as to what the emergency is, and the appropriate teams respond. My husband explained the siren to our daughter (in his usual easy for kids to understand manner) as the 'get the hell out of the road, there's a fire truck coming' alarm.
I hope to get some pictures to post that will give you a glimpse of our new home and it's historic surroundings. Never forget, no matter where I may roam, you can always find me here :)

Aug 5, 2009

If they only knew......

Every summer my son and daughter fly away to visit their fathers. The school year has usually been a long, regimented and restrictive one leaving little time for fun and relaxation. I secretly envy their dads who are given the opportunity to spoil them and provide them with seemingly endless days of fun, adventure, and attention. When the children return home, the first week is full of vacation stories; Friends made and families revisited, recollections of camping trips, treks to the beach, and joyful reunions. I am thankful that they have been well taken care of and feel loved.
In return, I feel somewhat inadequate. I tuck them in at night, hear their prayers, and wipe away the tears they shed for missing the fun filled summer they spent away, and the Father's they spent them with. I try not to take their feelings too personally, but it is difficult. I can only hope that when they are my age, they think back on these times, and appreciate the sacrifices made to ensure they were given the opportunity to be a part of both parents lives. They are both fortunate to have a mother and father, though no longer married, have their best interests at heart and are able to work together for their sake. Many children today are not so lucky, the parents harbor resentment, even hatred towards one another, and the children are the ones who ultimately suffer.
For my children, who will eventually read this post; I love you very much and miss you when you're gone. I miss tucking you in at night, recounting your days events, answering your questions, and kissing you goodnight. Sometimes, when I'm missing you most, I sit in your room, look around, and wonder what you're doing and hope that you're okay. With that, get off of my computer and go clean your room :)

May 10, 2009

Officer Williams { This still cracks me up! }

In the course of one month, I have gone from being an unemployed stay at home mom, college student, and avid gardener, to working for the state of Idaho at the Department of Corrections. It has been a whirl-wind, let me tell ya'! Now I sport an itchy blue uniform and a hefty leather utility belt for 12 hours a day, five days a week. I have pleaded with my teachers to show me some mercy as my family and I adjust to this transition, and have decided that once healthy, vibrant flowers now sun baked and deprived of water, do add an interesting shabby chic twist to the landscape. They mark a milestone in my life, which I have resolved to embrace wholeheartedly. I can't remember the last time I was this mentally and physically exhausted, but it's totally exhilarating, I love it!

Apr 7, 2009

Ahoy, Matey!

When I was young(er), I had cardboard boxes that were transformed into forts, castles, play houses, jails, whatever my mind could imagine. Times have changed.

My husband acquired a boat last year, a great deal for 100.00 (or so he thought). A flat tire on the trailer, and an outboard prop turned plow in an attempt to scale our driveway rendered this 'find' worthless as far as he was concerned. The dump Nazi's refused to take it unless it was cut up into small pieces and hauled in by the truck load. It's too big to bury, and the smell of burning fiberglass turns my stomach at the mere thought. So it became forever ours. Abstract lawn art, if you will. I didn't even notice it anymore.

Unknown to me, our 15 year old son has had his eye on it for some time. From the moment he was told he could have it, the boat has consumed his life. In thinking about it, what a cool hide-a-way for a boy his age to have for his very own! Every extension cord in the house is stretched accross the driveway to provide the power needed to run lights, a radio, and a water pump, every ammenity needed to sustain a weekend from home is all within reach by the flick of a switch. Whereas the hopes of this vessel ever being water worthy has long since been abandoned by us, Andrew has been given a gift that will give him wonderful memories to last a lifetime.

Mar 29, 2009

Who needs a microphone?

Be it into a screwdriver, paper towel tube, or in this case, a highlighter, this Diva-to-be can belt out a tune like no other....

No special equipment or back up singers needed! You go girl!

Mar 27, 2009

Goodbye My Friend

I am so sorry for the pain you endured in your final days. You’ve had injuries before, but they’ve never kept you down for long, I prayed that this one, too, would pass. When you walked over to me to let me know you needed to go outside, you seemed to have more energy than I’d seen in a while. I carried you down the steps and set you down in the yard, you were on your feet and disappeared into the darkness of the night. When you didn’t come home, I worried that you were lying somewhere not having the strength to make it back home. When we found you eight hours later, you looked at us as if to say ‘What are you doing here?’ instead of the ‘What took you so long?’ expression I was use to. You let me carry you and put you on the front seat of the truck to take you home, but would not let me take you out once we were there.

Pops put the heater in the truck for you last night so you would stay comfortable, and the kids made sure to give you water and food throughout the night, but you did not want anyone trying to move you. At the vet’s office, they had to come outside to see you, and the determination was made that you were no longer enjoying life, your brown eyes, now blued with age, showed pain and weariness. I wish I could have been there to pet you one last time and tell you that I love you. I know you’re in a much better place now, with hips that don’t hurt, and hundreds of trees you’re allowed to dig out of the ground without getting in trouble for. Thank you for being our faithful friend, protector, and companion, Jack. We love you, and will miss you more than you could ever know.

Love Always, Mom

Mar 13, 2009

Don't call me Hon.........

I'm listening to the young receptionist at the doctors office today chat with her friend on the phone as I wait patiently for my presence to be acknowledged, which, eventually, it was by the appearance of her forefinger in my direction cuing me to wait a minute. Meanwhile, my five year old, who has the flu, is insistent on touching everything in the lobby and spreading her cooties. A few minutes later, my sharp 'helloooo' interrupts her conversation, and she says..."I'll be with you in just a minute, hun".


This is one of my biggest pet peeves. My name is Kelly, not Hun, baby, darlin', Sugar, or any of those other 'I don't really care what your name is because I'm better than you and your name is insignificant to me' titles. Poor girl, if she had only known what was in store for her....

Gracie is very shy around those she doesn't know, but the doctor had a great approach to putting her at ease and making the examination a fun and interactive one. Less than 15 minutes, and we were done. The only thing left to do was to settle up our bill, so we made our way back to the receptionists window......."Hi Cutie Pie, are you sick??" she asked Gracie, who was preoccupied with staring at the floor tiles and avoiding all eye contact or communication....."Would you like a sticker?" The girl came around the corner with a basket of stickers and Dum Dums, and stooped over, eye level to Gracie, to let her rifle through the selection of goodies. As she lowered her head to get Gracie to look at her, my five year old let out the biggest, juiciest, infection laden sneeze ever causing the receptionist to screech and quickly retreat to the safety of her office....."Don't worry, HUN", I half-heartedly assured her, "it only lasts about a week."

Feb 27, 2009

..................Youth Revisited.................. sends me an email almost every day, which I delete without hesitation Today, it caught my attention by telling me that my ex was looking for me (oh dear god...). Quite pleased with my life at this point, but curious none the less, I put on my sunglasses and dawned my daughters Hanna Montana wig (my 'ex' may now be a mastermind hacker who will seize my computer and activate the web-cam upon my opening this link....ya' never know, better safe than sorry!). Guess what, nobody's looking for me, just a bunch of other people with my same name checkin' out my profile picture to see if I look like them, go figure.
Feeling reasonably sure I was in no serious danger, I ditched the disguise and browsed around for people I knew. I stumbled upon a girl I was friends with 25 years (or so) ago in high school. We were pretty close for some time, until, at 17, I found a boyfriend 12 years my senior. I went by to see her one day, and her mom told me she wasn't there (I knew better, her car was in the driveway). I'm sure her mom felt that I was making bad choices, and did not want her daughter involved with the likes of me.
I got into my new boyfriends recently restored '66 El Camino and sped backwards out of her driveway, determined to get my point across to her that I was mad. I slammed the shifter into first gear and stomped on the gas, which transformed the El Camino into an uncontrollable speeding bullet on the gravel road. The car crashed violently into a phone pole. I could hear her moms frantic voice yelling my name as she ran towards the car. I remember thinking, oh man, now she's gonna stick her face in mine and say, "See?? This is why I don't want my daughter hangin' around with you anymore!" so, to avoid hearing those words and feeling like an idiot, I played dead. I guess I was hoping that she'd feel compelled to take responsibility for causing such a tragedy, see the error of her ways, and forever rue the day she lied to me. The only thing I accomplished was giving her one more reason why her daughter should steer clear of me. That was one of the last times I saw her.
(Toni, if you ever read this, please tell your mom I'm sorry for that).
I hope she finds me here and we get to 'catch up', I've missed her.

Feb 6, 2009

My dancing Peter

I want to go dancing! It’s been four months since my husband took me, and I’m getting ready to go without him. He doesn’t like to dance (which I cannot comprehend), but the fact that he’s fine with my dancing with someone else, makes it easier to accept. Living in a tiny one dance floor kind of town, there’s not a big selection when it comes to partners, but much to my delight, I found my Peter!
Peter’s a painter. Unhappily divorced, but working through it with the help of Jack and PBR, so he’s usually at the bar and readily available when needed. Man, what a good dancer! I can’t stop smiling when he’s spinnin’ me around {{{..giggles..}}} What a Blast!! He loves to dance too, this is awesome for me! My husband is relieved to have someone else to pick up his slack and refers to my partner as his “Surrogate Peter”.
During the warmer months, our little community is inundated with tourists and the Boise college crowd (known crudely as ‘fresh meat’), they get all the attention from the locals, including Peter, who’s anxious to meet the next Mrs. Right. Understandably, if he spends all his time dancing with another woman, he's tagging himself as ‘taken’, therefore, he avoids me like the plague. If I expect to get my fair share, I better do it quick!!

Feb 2, 2009

Brace yourself, It's Monday again

I'm certain that the majority of people who look forward to the weekend aren't necessarily the same ones who are blessed with children. Once again, I've over-indulged in filling my quota of spending quality time with the kids to the point I'm twitching (and cursing whoever thought it would be funny to put the broken wine bottle opener back into the drawer). For starters, tucking the kids into bed at what I believe to be a reasonable hour on Friday night, runs a close parallel to trying to stuff a cat in to a can.
Breakfast in bed was served e-a-r-l-y Saturday morning by my two youngest, one trying to balance the tray in one hand so the other was free to push her sister with if the need arose, and the five year old smelling her fingers with a most perplexed expression on her face,

Mmmm......pancakes anyone?

My bed was vibrating in time to the beat of 'Iron Man', bass cranked, filtrating through the ceiling of my sons room creating hypnotic circles in my cup of coffee.
Surrendering to the fact that self-hypnosis was not going to work, and a second helping of the same tune was about to begin, I got out of bed and tried to brace myself for whatever the next 16 hours might have in store for me. Not too harsh at all really, we had fun dancing, doing some crafts, and playing 'donimoes', even got a little housework done, it was all going smooth as butter...... until bedtime. My five year old, lovingly referred to as 'Mrs. Peasalot', informed me that she had wet the bed the night before, and the blankets were soaked. There were no more dry covers left.....except for on my bed. Now, in our house, if one child gets to do something, for your own sanity, you darn sure better let the other ones do it too. So here I am tucked in MY bed with two quibbling, overly tired girls, two cats, a half a glass of wine with bits of cork floating in it, and the laptop.
Bless us all, Forever more, Amen :)

Dec 24, 2008

Christy, Ruthie, & Me Christmas Eve 1990 Saudi Arabia

What I believe in...

I spent Christmas of 1990 at King Fahad Air Base, Taif, Saudi Arabia as an Air Force Sergeant in support of Operation Desert Shield/Storm. We all missed our families. Phone calls to home were few and far between as they were very expensive. Mail was delivered once every two weeks, and was usually read many times and aloud to our friends. My best friend, Ruthie, and I were in the midst of a huge 'I'm not talking to you' fight that had been going on for some time (boy, she could be a hateful bitch).

I knew that we were all homesick and tempers had a tendency to flare over the stupidest things, but I was mad! I picked up the mail shortly before Christmas, and there was a letter for Ruthie from her daughters (6&9 years old) to whom she had not talked to in almost four months. I was so excited that I ran to our barracks, woke her up, and gave her the letter. I sat on the floor by her bed and watched and waited for her to read it to me. As tears of joy welled in her eyes, they did mine too. There could never had been a more cherished gift than the enclosed picture of her two girls sitting on Santa's lap holding little American flags taken just recently. We cried, laughed, and talked until it was dark and cold outside. We decided to build an oh-so-very-illegal fire in the middle of our compound to celebrate Christmas eve. To no surprise, the fire marshal showed up, and instead of an ass chewing, she sat with us as we sang carols under the stars in the middle of a country that does not believe in Christ. These friendships that I was so blessed to be given, and until the day I die, will always have, are unlike any I will ever have again. The camaraderie we as a group of 300+ shared to get through this dismal milestone in our lives is unlike anything, I'm certain, I will ever experience again.

I believe in supporting our troops who are serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. This has nothing to do with whether or not I support the cause or its validity, it's about honoring those men and women who believe in their country and do what is asked of them to show their allegiance to their government. As thousands of mothers, fathers, sons, daughters, brothers, and sisters spend Christmas day away from their families, say a prayer for their safe return home, and for their loved ones who will wake up Christmas morning without them.