Archive for October, 2007

The Weekend in Review

In short.  It was great.  Sunday we did church, got pelted with candy kisses by the lady who did children’s time, surprised the boy with Olive Garden, then came home and napped and watched TV.  Yesterday came home after dropping the kiddies and treated myself to some more supine time, then got up and got my butt in gear and did some major cleaning andI found surfaces i’d forgotten about
It seems that under the mail, the walmart bags, the school papers, various rocks the boy has collected and newspapers, there’s this wooden thing.  It appears to be a place where you can eat.  Novel idea.  Beyond the table, to the left of the stove is this surface where I found a phone under about 25 pounds of old junk mail, an old broken phone, 2 rolls of film from probably 2002 and two disposable cameras full of pictures from who knows when.

In my defense, lest you think I am a disgusting pig of a housekeeper, said mail, phones, film and cameras were arranged nicely in baskets…sort of…so it was organized chaos.

We definitely need to get a shredder and put an end to the junk mail mountain.

And…um.  I even MOPPED.  And washed the throw rugs.  And the couch covers.  

Another surface I found is where I make my coffee in the morning.  RCG, too.  Except she drinks the fancy flavored coffee so she’s set up her own coffee station.  We’re a 2 coffee maker household.
to the right of the coffee station/winerack thing is our uber huge trash receptacle.  it has a lid.  RCG says if it didn’t have a lid it would be easier for people to actually put their shit in the trash because with the lid it is “too hard and you drop stuff trying to put it in.”  

Ask me how often anyone actually bends over to pick up anything they drop on the kitchen floor.

I suppose before shots would have made this a more impressive “BEFORE and AFTER” type post, but honestly…I just don’t have the balls to out myself like that ;-P

All I know is that it sure feels good now that it is done!  Now if I can possibly manage to keep it this way…

Shut up.  I know.


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call me crazy…

but am I the only one that isn’t surprised that if you put a baby in one of these, up on a countertop or table, that this might happen in that “split second” that you are turned around peeling potatos? 

seriously people, here, have some brains.

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An Admission of Sorts

I am not afraid to die. 

I am afraid of the dreaded C-word.  Cancer. 

I’ve been a medical transcriptionist for, gosh, about 13 or 14 years now and I’ve always blamed my illogical feelings about cancer on the fact that I hear so much about it…every kind of it.  My friend Teresa, who is also a medical transcriptionist, or as we say in the biz, an MT, suffers the same morbid affliction.  Because of what we do, we know the kinds of cancer you definitely do not want and the kinds that, as cancer goes, wouldn’t be as bad.  We know what chemo cocktails go with what and what the side effects of vincristine are.  (more…)

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Lillian and Bert

I’m not really sure how long we even stayed with Olene, but the time we spent there was priceless – I do know that.  Of an evening at Olene’s lots of times we’d sit in old metal lawn chairs and eat watermelon.  Sometimes, she and I would rake her dirt.  She didn’t have a lot of grass, so we’d rake that dirt and then water it a bit to make a cool spot for “Dog” to lie when it was hot for a big black dog.  That dog walked every step Olene did for years and then one day just went missing.  She was sad for a long time when “Dog” went away but would never get another one.  That was a golden summer for a 6-year-old who up until that time had grown up in military housing.  What a time I had picking wild mustang grapes until my fingers would burn and raking dirt and going on picnics.  But as they say, all good things must come to an end.

Lucky for mom and me, Olene just happened to know everyone in that town and they knew Olene.  It was sort of an ‘any friend of Olene’s is a friend of mine’ type of thing and mom was able to get a job at the Hiway Cafe (pronounced Hiway Cu-FAY) washing dishes on the early shift.  The cafe was owned and operated by the Willeys, Bert and Lillian (pronouced Bert and Liyun) and as it turned out they had a few little rent houses in close proximity to the cafe and they hooked mom and I up with a swanky little 1 bedroom, 1 bath, 1 kitchen rock cottage right across ‘Sticker Stadium,’ which is where I would in the coming years suck at kickball, softball, touch football and track activities, as this was where we would trek daily for P.E. anytime the weather permitted us to be out of the 115-degree gym.  It was aptly named, too, as it was literally covered in goatheads.

We had us a great little system.  Mother would get up at the crack ‘o dawn, round about 5 a.m. and then I’d get up at 7 and get dressed in my little body suits and stirrup pants and get ready for school and walk across to the cafe for a hot breakfast and then I’d walk to school (oh yeah, I was in FIRST GRADE), which also luckily, would continue to be walking distance from every place we lived until they went and built the new high school clear the hell out 67…I guess they didn’t realize we didn’t have a little thing called A CAR. 

But about Bert and Lillian, they, like mother, were ‘older parents’ for back then.  Their youngest gal was named Marian and she and I quickly became fast friends, as they lived in the big house right behind the cafe and we were really each other’s closest in proximity playmate.  She was something else, that Marian.  I remember when she was 4 or 5 she would still get herself a bottle and fill it at the big stainless steel milk dispenser and go stand behind the swinging doors in the kitchen and drink every last drop. 

Hell, I was older than her and still sucked my thumb, so who was I to judge?!?

During those early years in Glen Rose I would spend almost as much time at Marian’s as I would at home.  I mean, really, she had all the cool shit…Atari, a big TV, white bread and mayonnaise and this wacky luncheon meat that was ham with CHEESE BITS IN IT (which I still think is super cool if they still make it)!!!

At my house we had braunschweiger on brown bread with butter, a 13-inch black and white TV that we only watched the news and All in the Family on, and we certainly did not have A-freaking-TARI.

But Marian had more than all the cool shit.   She had Bert and Lillian. 

Those people were yet another set of extra parents for me during a time when my own mom couldn’t possibly juggle all the balls all the time and thank God for them.

Marian and I called her mom and dad Mama Bear and Papa Bear.  When Mama Bear would come home for an afternoon rest, between the lunch rush and the dinner rush, she’d somehow manage to nap with us while we watched Batman and Popeye.  Looking back, she probably didn’t get a lot of napping done with us wallerin’ all over the place, but those were some of my favorite times. 

There were afternoons, though, when the cafe had been particularly busy at lunch and mom would still be at work when I got home from school.  On those days, instead of going to Marian’s for cartoons,  it would be my job to wash the silverware.  Remember, this was 1971 and there was no “dishwasher.”  Mother WAS the dishwasher.  They had these huge stainless steel sinks that were probably as deep as I was tall and they had FIRE under them to keep the water hot.  So clearly I remember standing on that pickle bucket and reeeeeeeeaching to the firey depths to retrieve handfuls of forks and knives.

I think that is still why I despise washing silverware to this day. 

To Lillian and Bert, though, mother was not just the dishwasher and I was not just the dishwasher’s kid.  They allowed us to be part of their family.  In 1974, mom slipped on the wet floor and fractured her wrist badly enough that lifting big tubs of dishes was no longer an option for her (at the whopping height of at best 4 feet 9 it’s a wonder it was an option anyway) and her tenure at the Hiway Cafe came to an end.  Our friendship with the Willeys never did though.  We were included in every Christmas party and New Year’s party and because mother didn’t drive, Lillian would come pick us up in their big, long Cadillac (they always had a Cadillac with automatic windows and AC and HEAT WOW)and we’d just stay the night.  They always had a houseful and the kids were always relegated to our own doings in the back bedrooms with Dick Clark and New Year’s Rockin’ Even, while the grownups probably did all sorts of unimaginably sinful 70’s type stuff in the den. 

Such fun times. 

It would be at Marian’s that I would master Pong and Tank and Asteroids, it would be in their horse pasture that I’d learn to drive the old pickup with the stick on the column, it was at their house that I watched color television and ate fancy ham with cheese IN it.

These folks, Bert and Lillian, were just two more people in Glen Rose who extended their hearts to us.  They took care of us and for that, I will be eternally grateful.

The older I am, the more I begin to realize that I wasn’t raised by a single mother.  I was raised by a town.

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embrace it…

come on…embrace your inner white trashiness.  like me.  rather than be embarassed by the fact that you have a ginormous “potato cannon” made out of 6 mini kegs of Coors Light, I’m just going to take it’s picture and put it on my blog.  isn’t it cute?  Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

As impressive as it is to look at, it doesn’t really work, so yeah…there is a God after all.

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Visual Emotions


Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

This is what the Junior looked like when I picked her up today after she made a 95 on her Algebra II test (was going to link you cutely for the story, but the link won’t work, so suffice it to say, the Junior didn’t do so well in Algebra II the first 6 weeks and she’s taking a little break from band because of it.  if she does well to the 3-week mark, she can get back to her normal bandgeekiness).


Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Well, this picture would be way more fun if it was bigger than a postage stamp.  I gotta work on that picture sizing thing. 

At any rate, if you care to go grab a magnifying glass and come back, I will tell you the story about this picture. 

Got it?  Okay.

This picture was taken the first time and the last time the Yubs and their offspring all went on vacation together.  There are 7 of us and let me tell ya, the wheels on the van were stressed the hell out after that trip.  That was the only time we’ve ever really used the “on-board” DVD player…no, wait.  We used it that time we drove to Arizona in 16 hours and got there about drinking time and I had tequila shots and blacked out…but I digress.

Anyway, the Yubs and the offspring, along with the Teacher Lady and her family (her 2 older boys are the same age as the RCG and the Longhorn, and her youngest is the same age as the Boy) descended upon South Padre Island, Texas, that summer of 2003, the 12 of us.  And oh, the fun we had.  My gosh, I’d only ever been to Galveston, so the sheer blueness of the water was just overwhelming to those of us who’d only ever been to Galveston (which excluded the Mr. who has been everywhere where the water is blue and perfect).  That was the summer the RCG graduated from high school and I was bound and determined that before she flew the coop we would have a vacation proper, even if it meant using a Capital One check and all the money in my savings account. 

The lady who we rented our Pepto-Bismol pink house from told us we just had to go into Mexico shopping one of the 7 days we were there.  She recommended the town of Prospero (I think) because she said it was lovely and you could drive right in and not worry about coming back to a vehicle with no tires.  In Prospero, she said, it was just like the open air markets in Europe. 

But we decided on Hell the quaint little town of Matamoros instead, since it was closer and all.

Now, go up and take another gander at the photo…get the magnifying glass back out if you need to.  I’ll wait.

Do you see one ounce of ‘happy happy joy joy we are shopping in Mexico’ in that picture?

Well of course you don’t.

In the front, that’s me, the one who was perpetually taking a head count to make sure none of the 8 children had been accosted.  I almost ran into plenty of poles because I was walking looking backward.

Low and to the left would be the Boy, then referred to as LittleYub.  You may sort of be able to make out the death grip I was holding him with.  Directly behind me is the Junior.  She was so miserably hot that day and has always been prone to getting a bit “peckish” if she a) goes without food too long, b) is too hot, c) stands up too long, d) gets too tired.  She’ll just keel over like one of them fainting goats I’ve heard about.

So, yeah, I was worried about that.

Behind Kelly was one of the Teacher Lady’s boys.  He’s looking down so you can’t see how happy he is, but trust me.  On a good day in America whilst lounging with half-nekkid ladies fanning him, he looks like he smells something real stinky most of the time…so yeah, he was less than thrilled with Matamoros.

Then, looking so thrilled to be alive is the RCG, then the recent high school graduate.  She was pretty sure she was going to be kidnapped and/or fall through a grate in the sidewalk that led straight to hell the sewer.

Y’all can’t see much further back than that unless you really DO have a magnifying glass, but trust me, the Teacher Lady’s husband, my Longhorn, and the Oldest Teacher Lady’s boy all look like we are in single file, marching right into the arms of Satan. 

However, I must say that we did buy the Boy/LittleYub a real snazzy Mexican soccer team uniform (mainly because the dude selling it practically put it on him as we walked by).  RCG scored her some of them phony sunglasses for 20 bills (Foakleys), and because I had to have something silver, I bought a really large pair of cross earrings that I never wore a single time because when dangling from my lobes, they appeared almost big enough to crucify a real person, if they were small enough.

To say the least, we managed to pack a day-full of Mexican fun into about 1.5 hours.  By the time we left the Junior was more than “peckish” and the Boy was roughly the color of a tomato and I was literally pouring water over his hot little head to keep his body temperature under 215 degrees in the taxi on the way back.   All the while trying to squelch my own desire to scream in terror every time we almost had a wreck.

Yeah. Good times. Good times.

Now I’m going to go fill out my application to work for the Matamoros Tourist Bureau.

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First and foremost, I am happy to annouce that the dog fever passed and common sense prevailed.  That part of my brain that realizes that most times I can hardly stand the ones we have overruled the part that was saying how sweet and perfect the new dog was going to be.  Most of all, I think, the part of my brain that knows that I am the only shit picker upper in this house said to the other part ‘hey dumbass part of the brain, you do not like picking up shit, so how ’bout knock it off with the thoughts about how sweet a puppy is.’

The RCG (who, incidentally, does not pick up shit and does nothing but complain about the animals we currently have, but is also the one who is lobbying hardest to increase our pet population) applied the cherry on top this morning when upon Max the Bigass Cat’s hurling of a hairball in the living room her apartment and she proclaimed “I HATE ANIMALS.  ALL OF THEM.”

Case closed.  No new mammals for us. 

In other news, we are actually having a very fall-y week.  A hoodie has been worn and the Boy has suggested that perhaps LONG PANTS are in order some time before the first freeze perhaps?  Of course, it’ll be 92 on Thursday, but then another cool front, and so on. 

I’m not ready for it to be Halloween…and sure not ready for it to be “the holidays.”  But ready or not, here they come.  Where the hell did the year go?  I guess I must be having a freakin’ blast because time sure is flying by 🙂

Me and the new camera continue to make friends.  The Boy


thinks it is ‘awesome,’ though from the look on his face, is getting a little tired of being the subject of an ongoing documentary of what boys do in their backyards.

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