Sunday, March 19, 2006

Sometimes just breathing is enough.

So lately, I've been contemplating my life in general, and specifically my marriage. It should come as little surprise to anyone who knows me that my marriage is 3rd rate at best, cloudy with a chance of sun...generally comparable to that first end-of-summer day when you feel the chill of fall in the air. And yeah, while I do enjoy fall, I'm NEVER ready for summer to end, and I find the transition extremely depressing.

Dan has it in him to be a good person. He can be very sweet and loving. Unfortunately, this segment of him is eclipsed for me by the cruel, heartless bastard he can also be. Sometimes, even when he's being nice (or if not nice, at least neutral) it's extremely difficult for me not to think back to his not-nice moments and resent the hell out of him. There are times (fewer and further between these days) when I am still enraptured by him, but for the most part I find myself silently seething in his general direction. Any offhanded comment he makes can cause me to go into full-on hate mode. When I'm hating him in my head and he hasn't done anything concretely wrong at that moment, I say he's irking me because "he's breathing my air." And sometimes just breathing is enough.

I don't see divorce looming in the immediate future, but there is a part of me that wonders how much more of my life I should be wasting here.

And in breaking news, the cat just deposited half of a mouse at my feet. Good kitty. Gag.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

I was made to be a SAHM.

That's "stay at home mom" for those of you not up on your acronyms.

I haven't been to work since Friday... the kids were sick on Monday and getting better yesterday, so we've been home. Let me just say...I haven't missed it one bit. I like being home. It felt good to actually have the energy to clean the house instead of doing a half-assed job after I've already worked 8 or 9 hours. I cooked nice dinners frozen chicken nuggets!

Unfortunately, as a friend of mine is wont to say, I married for love instead of money, and my paycheck is essential for the little things like paying the gas bill and keeping insurance. So today, it's back to the old grind. Can you sense my enthusiasm? neither.

Saturday, February 11, 2006

My twelfth anniversary...

So what's up, cats and kittens? I see at least ONE person still checks up on me...bless you, Cristie!

Today happens to be Emily's twelfth twelfth anniversary of being a mom! (weep weep weep.) She's in a good mood today, which is a nice break from the pre-teen angst we've been dealing with. It's a difficult stretch, lately, and I've been losing myself in looking at pictures of her when she was a wee little lamb who didn't talk back or give me heaping servings of attitude. Pictures such as this one....look how sweet in her frilly little Easter dress, holding her bear, her hair in pigtails. Sometimes (ok, ok, lots of times) I wish we could return to this time. She was just so agreeable, and agreeable is not an adjective I use much to describe her these days.

Anyway, today, her birthday party consists of us going to the mall to let her shop. (Last week, she was irate that I wouldn't just drop her off with some money!!) After that, we'll be going out to dinner. Vote now as to whether I should tell the server it's her birthday and embarass the hell out of her!

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Is this thing on?

If a blogger posts after 6 months of inactivity, does anyone read it? What is the sound of one hand typing? Do I even have anything semi-witty to say?

We shall see, my dears...we shall see.

Sadly, when you're 35, you can go 6 months and honestly say "Not much has changed with me, nothing new going on..." and it's actually true. In my case, the one major event was the passing of my grandma in December.

My gram was more like a mom to me. I moved in with her and my gramps permanently when I was 15, after several bouts of staying with her for a few weeks or months at a time. She was so awesome, a real bright spot in my life. Her manner of controling my actions by always just assuming that I would exhibit good behavior led me to really turn myself around, you know? I never wanted to disappoint her.

So anyway, I've had these past two months to get over the shock of her passing away, and I've been helping my gramp go through a ton of stuff at the house. I'm now the proud owner of all my high school yearbooks, TONS of pictures of me with bad 80s hair and clothes (stirrup pants, anyone?), and a bunch of Emily's baby clothes I had left there, as well as some more REALLY WEIRD stuff to put in my house. Alas, my digital camera is still waiting to be repaired, so you'll have to wait on some pics. I mean, you'll have to wait...if you're out there...reading this.

fun link of the day:

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Scott Blake - Bar Code Art

Scott Blake - Bar Code Art

OK, this is the coolest site I've seen in a good long time. Scott Blake is an artist who creates portraits and other artwork using barcodes. All kinds of keen stuff on his site. I'm gonna go ahead and pledge my allegiance to this particular part, though. Answer the questions to view yourself as a barcode. We'll skip all the hoohah about the intriguing commentary on our society (though, certainly, there's an intriguing commentary on our society) and just enjoy it for its newness and neatness.

An added bonus: You can get your very own postcard to have and to hold. (

Guess who I chose?

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Feeling uninspired grandparents have been renting the same cabin in the Adirondacks (Upstate NY) every summer for the past 20 years. I told them a while back that I'd love to make a little album of some of their pics from those trips. Apparently, they liked the album idea, but decided to take a different approach. Instead of bringing me a few pics of their trips over the years, they decided they'd like to have an album of the trip they took 16 years ago. That summer, they bought a dinky pull-behind trailer and travelled all across the country.

Recently, they brought me a suitcase full of pics, along with my grandpa's travel diary. There are some neat pictures, but let's just admit that some areas of the country are going to be a little more interesting than others. Right now, I'm in the North Dakota, not-s0-interesting part of the country. I am totally uninspired by these pictures and it shows in my pages. There's only so much you can do with landscape scenes of the Badlands, you know? Hopefully, as we move west across the Rockys and towards the west coast, I'll be a little more inspired and able to crank out some neat pages.

In unrelated news, I overslept and got to work half an hour late today and left 45 minutes early. Nobody said a damn thing. Life isn't all that bad!

They only LOOK sweet.

Funny how kids can totally prove the "appearances are deceiving" cliche better than anything else known to man.

Observe the siblings at right. They appear to love one another with a deep, abiding affection born and bred into them, no? Yeah, well no.

Tonight, the 11 year old decided that it just wasn't fair that the 4 year old got to sleep on the loveseat while she had to sleep in her bed. While she was having the whinefest about it, the 4 year old, being 4, decided he'd try to explain the whys and wherefores. The conversation, at least what I was unable to block out, is below:

Liam (climbing on to loveseat on top of Emily's stuff): "Emily, you have to get up because I'm having the loveseat tonight."
Emily: "Shut up, brat, you always get your way!"
Liam: "You shut up!"
Emily: "No, you!"

At this point, Emily decided it was time for her dramatic exit stage left and yanked her blanket out from under Liam. He in turn was catapulted up over the back of the loveseat, where he bumped into the stand holding the fishtank, causing about 2 gallons of smelly fishwater to slop onto him and the carpet. Emily was smart and ran. I seriously need to buy stock in Febreeze.

Editor's note: As a trained professional and somewhat progressive mom, I am well aware that leading experts recommend against using terms such as "Shut up" around or to children. All I can say is, Bite me. Sometimes the temper gives.

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death.

So, longish story short, I was raised Baptist but converted to Catholicism when I was 18. I haven't been to church since my college years, due to that inertia problem I've discussed previously. But the last couple of years, I've been thinking that it wouldn't be the worst thing I could do to start going to Mass again. And now, to finally tip the scales in that direction, Emily will be attending a Catholic school this year. And yeah, parish members get a good discount. I almost forgot that part.

And that is how I found myself meeting with the Monsignor on Friday morning. We started out with my conversion. Brownie points there. Things turned sour, though, when I said "Well, husband isn't Catholic. And no, he's not going to convert. Well, yes, he was previously married." D'oh! Apparently by marrying a heathen divorcee, I've shut myself off from the Sacraments! (I felt like I was meeting with the Communion Nazi: "NO HOST FOR YOU!") Surprisingly, Father did not change his mind when I brought up the interesting coincidence that his nephew happens to be married to my husband's ex-wife! "Isn't it a small world, Father?" I said. ) Also, I am to be disdained for never having had either of the kids baptised, not to mention the fact that Emily is about 4 years late for her First Holy Communion. Father recommends that I explore the possiblilty of Dan and his first wife getting their marriage annulled so that I can have our marriage blessed by the church. Somehow, this seems like a little more trouble than it's worth for a tuition discount, so I nod agreeably and say that we'll discuss it. Also, there'll be the matter of baptism classes to take for both the kids. And godparents to procure. (Marcy? Cristie? Little help here?) But 3 months from now, provided my little envelope with my name on it shows up in the collection plate each week to show that I am generous in my repayment of God's blessings, I'll be paying a lot less for schooling.

And plus there's the added benefit of feeling closer to God and all that jazz too. Shouldn't forget that part!

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

The best picture of the whole entire summer

What you are about to see will shock, dismay, and even amaze you. It can be viewed alone, as its own piece of art, but it's so much better when accompanied by its backstory.

As I mentioned previously, this year's family vacation took us to the exotic Grand Island (NY) Holiday Inn Conference Center. In all seriousness, it was a very nice hotel right on the river, with a pretty view and 2 great pools. The absolute best part though, was the sheer horror of seeing a cliche come to vivid life right before my very eyes. While we basked at the pool one afternoon, a very elderly man made an appearance. He was wearing...and I shit you not....a pink flowered speedo. I wish, dear readers, that I had been astute enough to capture a photo from the front, but alas! I did not. The best I could do was to wait until he fell asleep on his lounge chair, then sneak up, position my kids near him so that it would appear I was taking their photo, and then grab the shot. Guerrilla style, as it were. The horrific result is below. Feast your eyes on this! (If you dare!)

Until next time!

Monday, August 08, 2005

Curses! Foiled again!

So today, I got a cool scrappy (or rather stampy) catalog in the mail from my friend Mirandy. It has all kinds of goodies. While looking through it, I was consumed with a desire to scrap something, to create a cool page! Then I got up and looked at the mess that I call a scrapbook area and I was just overwhelmed. I would have had to spend an hour cleaning up before I could even think about starting a page. Then it all just seemed like work....and who wants to work when you've already put in your 8 hour day plus maybe cleaned something and cooked a decent dinner? Not me. It was so much easier just to sit down and do nothing.

Today is our 7th wedding anniversary...can you hear the fanfare when I say that? No?? Me neither. Things are cool, no active fights lately. It's just that he bothers me when he breathes my air. Is that so wrong??

I guess I should end on a laughable note, so I'll relate a funny thing that Liam said the other day. We were at the beach and I was fussing at him for one thing or another. He turned around and said "You know, I'm over here having a good time, and then SUDDENLY, I don't LIKE you!" Ever have one of those parenting moments where you have to turn away to keep them from seeing that you're laughing your ass off when you're trying to be serious? That was one of those moments.

Today makes 2 days of posts in a row, folks! Will she go for the threepeat? Tune in tomorrow to find out this and much, much more.

Sunday, August 07, 2005

Don't be mad!

Ok...I know. I'm a horrible person for not having updated my blog in so damn long. What can I say, except to remind you all that things fall apart; the center does not hold. I have missed writing to an extent. One of the things I dislike about myself is that I find it so easy to let inertia take hold. Working on that's gotta go on my "To-Do List."

That being said, howsabout an update?

It's been a good summer here in the great Northwestern corner of my state. Last summer was full of rain and cool temps, but this summer has been beautiful. We've made several beach trips, which is always a good thing. (We live within 10 minutes of 7 miles of beautiful sandy beaches on Lake Erie, but there are summers when we're lucky to take advantage twice. Shameful.)

Our family vacation took us to Niagara Falls and Buffalo NY for a few days. Thinking about the Buffalo Zoo? Let me offer one word of advice: Don't. That place was pitiful! Our zoo here in Erie is nice, but kind of small. The Pittsburgh and Cleveland zoos are amazing, so I was figuring that in a city like Buffalo, they'd have a nice zoo. Wrong. Sooo old, so small, and seemingly neglected. It took us all of 2 hours to see the whole thing. We stayed in a great hotel on Grand Island, though, and the trip to the Falls was awesome. The best part of the trip? Definitely the Butterfly Conservatory in Niagara Falls, Ontario. Picture this huge tropical greenhouse, with butterflies flying all around you. It was amazing.

We've also been camping. Twice. In a tent. My back is still recovering, but the kids and the husband had fun.

On the crafty front, I did get some excellent news recently...I'm going to be published! I'll have a project in the new Joann Essentials idea book. Not sure when it's coming out yet, probably in the spring. I'll try to post an update before then. steps, till I get back in the swing. Thanks, to those of you who cared enough to hound me to update!

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