Tuesday, October 31, 2006



Monday, October 30, 2006

Small Psycho Sidebar

READER ALERT: I am NOT in danger of harming myself or others. This particular entry is NOT cause for alarm. None of what I am writing is new in my life. It's just an attempt to wade through the disturbance in my head to possibly find some relief in a harmless form of self-expression, namely writing.

k, 'cause I'm having one of those days where I am very very aware that all is not right in the land of markira's brain. Is it still an avoidance spending binge when all you purchase is books about your disorder? I've got several books on the way with lovely inspirational titles like Get Me Out of Here, Sometimes I Act Crazy, I Hate You, Don't Leave Me and other fine cheery stuff. (oh, and the latest Stephen King hardcover, 'cause, you know, I've gotta have it.) I'm trying to put a positive spin on it, saying I'm just trying to ramp myself up, getting pumped up for the Great Therapist Hunt, which is *supposed* to start after all my new poor-person health insurance stuff kicks in on Nov. 1st. (note the supposed to.) Getting geared up for Project Fix Markira.

I think the truth is closer to I'm getting mighty tired of feeling like I am the only person in the world who functions the way I do, and I want to see that I'm not, in black and white (hahaha, black and white? get it? no? sigh).

For those who are not "in the know" about what I'm talking about, I have borderline personality disorder. There's a regular little laundry list of accompanying dysfunctions that I also have, but that's one of the biggies.

Anyway, I'm having a bad day, and a bad week, and maybe, just maybe, something in one of these books will help some.

One of the weird parts of my "bad days" is that to the outside, it doesn't look like anything should be wrong. And nothing really *is* wrong. Sure, I'll point to things (like the fact that my entire house currently smells like sewage for some weird reason that has *something* to do with my [insert many strong curse words here] basement), but none of them are really anything that should cause the turmoil that is going on in my head. And I can't really *explain* the turmoil in my head, either. But what I'd like more than anything would be to just run away from me, which of course is impossible, but it feels like if I could just reach inside and rip my brain out it would help somehow.

Now this is the kind of thing that often leads to self-harm. Where hurting the *outside* distracts from the hurt that is in the *inside.* And here is where the curse of intelligent reasoning comes in. Because I am very aware that self-harm doesn't *really* help any, and so there is the monstrous struggle to refuse to engage in that type of behavior, but having no other outlet.

So as I wrote this last paragraph, it occurs to me that someone "normal" might read this and start freaking out, or backing away slowly (or hell, turning and booking ass as fast as they can). I wouldn't blame them. I am aware that in my blog I swing back and forth from inane chatter to this psycho stuff. Part and parcel of the disorder, really. Not that I want to excuse myself, saying it's *okay* or anything. It's just that I haven't figured out yet how to not be the way I am. I sure as hell don't LIKE it. Quite frankly, it sucks. I'd like to be a fun & friendly person, with perhaps a slightly twisted sense of humor, that people enjoy being around. And yes, sometimes I *am* that person. But other times I am not. I have a huge pit of darkness that just sucks me in whole. And I'm trying to claw my way out of it, but it's not so easy.

And now I am getting disgusted with myself and my self-pitying rambling on and on. And I'm just going to cut this whole crap out and go upstairs to my room and stop in the bathroom first and take a stupid Tylenol PM and go the hell to bed. G'night. mk

Halloween Meme

Here's a Halloween Meme I found. I totally tag all of you, and tell me in the comments if you did it, so I can go check yours out.

1. What's the scariest movie you've ever seen?
Seven. For ages after that, whenever I took a shower, I was afraid that when I pulled the shower curtain back, the person punished for Sloth would be there. That guy totally freaked me out. Another movie that terrified me was Ransom. I happened to see that the first time I left my son with a babysitter. The thing that scares me most in the world is something happening to one of my kids. "Traditional" scary movies might make me a little jumpy at first, or I might sleep with the lights on afterwards if I'm in the house alone, but I enjoy them. What can I say, I started reading Stephen King books when I was about ten, and not a one has ever scared me. I'm a freak.

2. What was your favorite Halloween Costume from childhood?
None from childhood. I was the Headless Horseman once for a community Halloween party I organized when I was working at the bank several years ago. Totally awesome costume, I loved it.

3. If you had an unlimited budget, what would your Fantasy Costume be for this Halloween?
Something tiny and skimpy which would look wonderful because of all the amazing liposuction I had.

4. When was the last time you went Trick or Treating?
Last year. Of course, I stayed on the sidewalk and the kids went up to the houses, but I snuck some of their candy.

5. What's your favorite Halloween Candy?
Snickers. Skittles.

6. Tell us about a scary nightmare you had.
I have nightmares several times a week. There are things chasing me in most of them, although sometimes I am trapped in a pit with them.

7. What is your Supernatural Fear?
I am afraid of monsters. Really. I also won't look in mirrors after dark, because I am afraid I will see something in them other than me.

8. What is your Creepy-Crawly Fear?
I HATEHATEHATE bats. Not thrilled by spiders and snakes and mice, but willing to not freak out as long as they are not heading in my direction.

9. Tell us about a time when you saw a ghost, or heard something go bump in the night.
I have actually witnessed a lot of ghosty-type things. I volunteered at an 18th century Victorian mansion when I was a teenager, giving tours, and there were three ghosts that lived there. One closed doors, one ran down the stairs, and another rocked in a rocking chair. Many volunteers witnessed these things, and more than one left immediately, never to return. The house I grew up in (that my parents still live in) also has ghosts, which moved things around in my bedroom a lot, and opened doors. There was a vaguely malevolent presence that lived in the front bedroom (which is the biggest bedroom in the house, with two closets, and I *could* have had that room as my bedroom, except I couldn't sleep in there, so I actually went back to sharing the tiny bedroom with my sister). I also saw a form with ragged wings (but *not* an angel) floating at the end of my bed one night. Scared hell out of me. Other people have also sensed these presences. There's lots more, but I don't want to talk about it.

10. Would you ever stay in a real Haunted House overnight?
It is highly highly doubtful. I have entirely too much imagination. There would have to be a LOT of money involved, and many many strong men to protect me. (or to be killed first while I escape.) And even then, probably not.

11. Are you a traditionalist (just a face) Jack O'Lantern Carver, or do you get really creative with your pumpkins?
Creative. I do a lot of cat faces and spider webs. Sometimes words.

12. How much do you decorate your home for Halloween?
This year I haven't decorated AT ALL (it's been a bad autumn for me). Usually I do some skeletons, spider webs, grim reapers, ghosts, spooky music blasting, that kind of thing. A couple of years I've done a whole graveyard thing, with rats and snakes and tarantulas, arms sticking out of the ground and corpses hanging from the trees, etc. Someday I'll do a whole haunted house.

13. What do you want on your tombstone?
Birth and death dates a really long time apart. mk
Well, the Halloween Carnival on Friday was lots of fun. They had more games than previous years, and the kids had a blast. Mark put me in "jail" twice, and thought that was hilarious. The second time, his friend Eddie borrowed my camera so he could take a "mug shot" of me (and no, you can't see it). Kira and I went through the haunted house, and fifteen minutes or so afterwards I could feel my hand again (she was really scared through the whole thing, although she bravely made it all the way through without actually crying....the people in the HH toned it waaaaay down knowing she was scared, which helped a lot). There was much running around by the kids (I think that if they did nothing else except open the gym and let the kids run around, they would still have a blast), and at one point Kira came running up to me baring bright green vampire teeth, which was rather disconcerting on a tooth fairy, but she loved it.

Kira did, in fact, win a prize in the Costume Parade, although hilariously, it was in the wrong age group. They had three groups, one for first grade and under, one for grades 2-5, and one for grades 6-8, with four prizes in each group. Kira won in the grade 2-5 age group, as did her friend Olivia (who went as a geisha, and looked GREAT). The judges were eighth grade kids, and they didn't really know what they were doing, but whatever, they all had fun.

After the Carnival, there was a middle-school dance, which Mark was staying for. The dance lasted until 9:30, and Mark was going to go home with MarkS for an overnight.

Well, a little after 10, the phone rings and it's Mark, telling me that MarkS's mom hadn't picked them up yet and there was no answer at her house. So I had to get dressed, get Kira out of bed (which was NOT a fun experience), and drive to the school to pick up the boys. Drove to MarkS's house, nobody was there. So I left a message on Mary's voicemail and drove back to my house. Just as we were going into the house, Mary drove up, all apologetic because the battery on the clock on the wall in her studio had apparently died at 8:30. I was more than a little grumpy at that point, and just kinda got through the thing, explaining that I was just going to keep Mark home at that point. The Marks were NOT impressed with me about that, and I don't think Mary was happy with it either, but too damn bad. This kind of irresponsibility on Mary's part had happened too often for me, and I'm done. I mean, I can understand that freak incidents like the dead clock battery can happen. But it seems like they happen ALL THE TIME with Mary, and really, if you know you're supposed to be someplace to pick someone up at 9:30, don't you look at the clock occasionally? And don't you maybe NOTICE if it says the same time two or three times when you look at it? Or is that just me?

Anyway, MarkS and Mary are nothing if not irrepressible, and would you believe that they actually asked (repeatedly!!) the NEXT DAY if Mark could have an overnight again? Um, NOT HAPPENING.

OK, what started out as a cheery little "we had fun at the Carnival" post has turned into another rant, and I really have other things to be doing today (like mountains of laundry, as well as making snacks for this afternoon's Brownie meeting, and other various household tasks). So I'm off. mk

Friday, October 27, 2006

Costumed Kids

Kira, as Dorothy, two years ago. (Mark was a Dementor.)

Mark, as a zombie rock star, last year. (Kira was Darth Vader.)

Halloween Carnival is tonight. Kira has so far won two costume awards in three years. Mark has never won a prize, even the year he went as Peter Pan (wearing TIGHTS! The boy braved wearing TIGHTS to a SCHOOL FUNCTION and did not win. Particularly irksome to him because his sister, who did not even ATTEND the school yet, won for the ACCOMPANYING costume of Tinkerbell, both costumes I sewed for them.) When Kira won again the next year, as Dorothy, Mark told me that Kira was NOT ALLOWED TO WIN a third year in a row. No problem, as Kira decided last year that she wanted to be Darth Vader. When we were out trick-or-treating, we walked past a little boy, who turned around to look back at Darth Vader and saw Kira's hair hanging down past her helmet. He very loudly complained to his mom, "Darth Vader can't be a GIRL!" I thought Kira was going to whack him with her light saber.

Anyway. Personally I hope that Kira *does* win a prize tonight, as I worked my ass off on it. (well, unfortunately, not LITERALLY off, although that would be very nice, as the ass in question is rather considerable, and not in a good way.) But MY prize was seeing how excited she was about it yesterday when she came home, and tried the whole thing on, and then flitted around the house. She loved it.

OK, I am again putting off real work that needs to be done (in this case, pretzel rods that must be dipped in melted chocolate and rolled in sprinkles, for this afternoon's first grade party). Off I go. mk

Not Fair

I am divorced.

I am also not dating. Nor am I particularly interested in dating right now, as I barely have the energy to function as is.

There are not even any interesting single men around me to flirt with. Not that I would probably even remember how to flirt anymore, or that any of them would be interested in flirting back.

It has been 3 years and 255 days since I last had sex. This number is likely to get a great deal larger.

All of these are reasons why it is extremely unfair that I have been having a great number of very sexy dreams recently. Ex. TREME. ly. unfair.


Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Random Photo day

Mark took this himself. Geek.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Kira's Necklace

This is the necklace I ordered for Kira's birthday (December 9th, she'll be 7). I wanted to make sure to give myself PLENTY of time to get it. As it was, I ordered it on Thursday, October 19th, it was DONE and SENT on October 19th, and I received it yesterday.

If you want to check out the website, it's wirename.com. The prices are reasonable, and I think this is a wonderfully unique gift. I was able to customize it to my liking (I had him put the heart over the 'i', as well as having her birthstone crystal on the bar, which is one of the options). Anyway. There it is. mk

Too Little, Too Much

Today has totally been a day when I hit my max of what I could handle. It's funny how that works. Some days, I can roll with the punches, no problems at all. Other days, it just takes nothing at all for me to hit overload. Today I maxed out. And, of course, it was all just the stuff of life.

We had Brownies today. The girls just would NOT keep their butts in the seats (like I should expect that, they're in first grade. If they ever sit down at ALL during a meeting, I should be impressed). We planned too many crafts for the time allowed, and Patti and I hadn't gone over them well enough together to be on the same page as to what the end result of the craft should be, so they got a bit messed up. The girls were fine with it, but *I* was upset because they didn't come out the way they were supposed to. And the parents showed up and we were still working on crafts, so the ending friendship circle and songs and stuff totally got cut out. And then we were still trying to clean up and parents were grabbing girls and going, so stuff got left behind, and girls didn't get signed out properly, and we were trying to answer questions and the girls who were left were running around the room shrieking....you know, regular first-grade-Brownie stuff, that usually I can roll with. Today I just felt like shrieking myself and hiding in the closet.

So then we FINALLY got out of there, and I couldn't find Mark, and then when I sent Kira around to the playground to collect him, my stupid car wouldn't start. It's been acting up lately, and I've been using my parents' ancient van for regular transportation, but the Intrepid started so I figured I could take it to the school and back. Well, I got it TO the school. But not back. So I called my dad and he drove up (20 minute drive) to get me and take me the three miles to my house, and I finally got him to understand that my car REALLY REALLY NEEDS TO GO TO THE MECHANIC. So tomorrow morning I have to go back to the school and see if the car will start, and if so drive it directly to the mechanic's. (and then have my parents meet me at Mike's--the mechanic--and drive me BACK to the school to pick up the van. As Kira said, "That sounds like a lot of running around.") So now I will have an unknown amount of money going out to get the car HOPEFULLY fixed so I can rely on it, because I need to have a car I can trust.

And this, of course, after I *just* paid out $2800 to have the new drainpipe installed from my basement. I'm really very glad to have the new drainpipe, because I hate worrying every single time it rains, whether my basement will flood, and how many of the EIGHT sump pumps I have down there will have to be running at any given time (only ONE of which can actually get plugged in in the basement...the rest have to be run from extension cords all over my first floor, since putting two in any one socket seems to guarantee a fuse blowing). And, of course, that one that is plugged in all the time is the only one where the automatic kickon works, so there's constant checking of water levels in the basement, and manually turning on and off pumps....it sucks. And the old pipe appeared to actually bring water IN to the basement, instead of draining it out. But the new pipe is bigger, has a better gravity feed angle, and should just generally work better. And really, $2800 is a major bargain considering I *didn't* have to pay to have the road ripped up to have the pipe run across the road, since the town was ripping up the road to install a new culvert anyway, so the guy who was doing that just ran my new pipe over at the same time. So I didn't have to pay for all the extra ripping up. Which would have probably run me closer to $10,000. So it's better. And a bargain. (I'll keep reminding myself of this, until the ouch of the $2800 bill fades.)

And from the pipe rant we can move on to the Halloween time crunch, where the Carnival is on Friday and I still haven't finished Kira's costume, despite having had the materials since August, I believe. I have the dress *itself* done, the wings are finished, wand made (although I would like to reinforce it, the dowel seems to be cracking), crown is done, her trick-or-treat bag is sewn, I just need to finish tacking the teeth appliques to the overskirt and get the shoes painted. I've done three coats of silver on them so far and it's still not looking right, so I think I'm going to get some silver spray paint and see how that does. Of course, they're just shoes, they're not really going to show under the dress, I *could* just go with it. We'll see. I'll focus first on the teeth.

Also a part of the Halloween crunch, besides the costume stuff (including if Mark doesn't get his camo pants in the wash tomorrow morning, he's going to have to go naked, since I don't go get his laundry out of his room anymore and tomorrow night he'll be at his dad's, coming home Thursday after school, I'm NOT doing laundry in a panic Thursday night, and Friday he has to pretty much wear his costume to school because he has STAR after school and gets back at 5:30 and the carnival starts at 5. He's going as an Army guy, so the T-shirt & camo pants is actually okay for him to wear all day (in fact, he wore it last week as just an outfit, and it inspired his costume choice, since until that day he wasn't going to wear a costume at all).

AND I got an email today asking if I could bring in a healthy treat for the first grade party on Friday. So I have to go shopping and get stuff to make that. And Monday we're having another Brownie meeting, and I'm snack mom for that, too, so need to get all that stuff.

But anyway, now we're stretching into next week's stress, and I'm trying to limit myself to the current week. :D

The car thing was what put me up and over. That, and coming home and getting a good look at the disaster my house currently is. I had a small meltdown and the kids took care of a little of their stuff, but there's still crap everywhere. Hopefully I can get most of it taken care of tomorrow, so I can breathe.

Now that I have done another one of my endless vents over not much at all, I am going to go TRY to relax. Kids are in bed, I think I'm gonna shut the house down for the night and go curl up in bed with a book and a Xanax. mk

Friday, October 20, 2006

Pink for October

Thanks to Mom-101 for the tips on how to change my template to make it PINK for OCTOBER (Breast Cancer Awareness Month)! Of course, I've only been able to figure out how to make the *border* pink, but the intent is there.

My grandmother had a breast removed due to breast cancer, and I discovered my first breast lump shortly thereafter (I was 18). Fortunately mine ended up being due to fibrocystic breasts (which makes monthly self-exams and annual exams by a physician especially important). I had a baseline mammogram done when I was 30.

Do what you can to take care of yourselves, ladies. And do what you can to support the research to conquer this disease. We've lost too many women to it. mk

There is Something Wrong With This Conversation

Mark, getting ready to go wait for the bus: So, what are you going to do today?
Me, suspicious: Why?
Mark: Because I don't want you on the computer all day.
Me, defensively: I'm going to do laundry, and work on Kira's costume, and do some cleaning. See, look, I have a list.
Mark: That's okay, then.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Nonrelated ramblings

Two things that have popped into my head that hopefully putting down in the blog will exorcise:

1) I totally recind my decision to possibly allow Mark access to my glue gun. This said after spending half an hour burning the hell out of my fingers creating Kira's tooth fairy wand (although the wand turned out pretty good....it's heavy as hell, though. I mean, the thing is SOLID. It's also HUGE. We're talking a ten-inch tooth on a stick.). (I will at some point post a picture.)

2) Who the HELL does Kevin Federline have dirt on to get him on CSI? I cannot STAND that individual, and seeing him on last night's show was just not good at all. He is just SUCH an idiot. I have hated him just from looking at PICTURES of him, and that's before seeing him on TV. It did not improve my opinion of him. It's actually rather irrational, my extreme dislike of him. I've just never EVER seen a picture of him where he looks anything other than a lowlife sleaze. (yay Nick for punching him!)

OK. Maybe now I can move on. ;) mk

I Am Escaping!


By a wonderful set of coincidences, my friend Kimmie is driving up to Maine from Massachusetts today. (for the day. Driving back tonight. She does this.) AND X happens to have tomorrow off. (as well as his regular day off, Sunday.)

SO, at my request, X is picking up the kids tonight after he gets out of work, and I am going back to Massachusetts with Kimmie for the weekend! Coming home Sunday.

Kimmie is a driving freak. She thinks nothing of this following sequence: Driving from Massachusetts to Maine today, back tonight. Sunday morning driving BACK to Maine, and then BACK to Massachusetts, and then going to work on Sunday afternoon. She is more than willing (and is, in fact, EXCITED) to do this for me, because she knows that my anxiety disorders, depression, and agoraphobia will NOT permit me to drive down to MA & back myself (not to mention my car is not the most reliable).

So anyway. We're going back tonight so we can have a full day to play tomorrow. On the books is a trip to the Boston Museum of Science to see the Freaky Body Exhibit. (It's *actually* called Body Worlds 2: The Anatomical Exhibit of Real Human Bodies--but our unofficial title is more accurate, I think.) We also have to make it through a family dinner at her parents' house, but we'll get through that okay (she is thrilled to have me going along, as she *was* going to have to suffer that one alone).

The only fly in the ointment right now is that yesterday morning I agreed to have MarkS after STAR today until 9:30 so his mom could go to some thing her friend was putting on. So now my own kids are getting picked up at 7:30, but I'll have MarkS until 9:30. And then after he leaves, we'll be leaving for Mass. I tried calling Mary, but couldn't get ahold of her, and her voicemail is doing freaky things. I was hoping that she could maybe go to *half* of her friend's thing (It's from 6-9) so I could leave earlier, and also so MarkS doesn't have to hang out here without my Mark (which I'm sure will be uncomfortable for all involved). I'm not holding out much hope for it, though, because Mary has a tendency to push the envelope on friends helping her. Like, I wouldn't be surprised if she didn't show up until 10 or 10:30. I mean, I don't mind helping people out occasionally, but when YOU call and ask someone to watch your child, and a pickup time is agreed on, and there isn't any money involved, your friend is just doing it out of the goodness of her heart, then you'd at least try to be on time, right? Nope.

Anyway. I'll work that out.

So right now, I'm in a mad dash to get a bunch of laundry done and get the house at least semi-clean so I won't come home to a complete hellhole like it is right now. Also need to figure out *something* I can wear there (I have NO DECENT CLOTHES, not even for RURAL MAINE, much less BOSTON) and pack etc. AND I'm trying to get a little work in on Kira's costume, since I have less than 2 weeks until the parties start (and actually there's one this Sunday the kids have been invited to, but that's X's problem). Oh, and I have about $50 to get me through the whole weekend. *This* should be interesting.

Off I go. mk

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Kids' Homework

Beast Mom had an entry on kids' homework. (go read it now. I'll wait.) I started to comment on it, but my comment ended up being a whole essay in itself, so I decided to just blog it. :D

I'm tough on my kids academically. They're both extremely bright, I want them to try their best, and I know they're capable of a lot. I do offer to check Mark's homework daily. If he balks at it, I back off and let him deal with whatever grade he's gonna get. If he lets me check, I'll tell him what's wrong and send him back to re-do it. I'll explain concepts if he's struggling with something. I'll even sit right next to him and help him figure out what his next step should be. But I WON'T feed him answers. That doesn't do him any good at all. I do, however, believe that Mark has all the resources he needs to get a 100 on all of his homework assignments. IF he chooses to avail himself of these resources. If he doesn't, no sympathy from me.

With big projects, (like the academic fair), I guide him. First he comes up with an idea. Then he sketches out what he wants the project to look like. Then I ask him to make an outline of steps he needs to do to get the project done. (ALL the steps.) Then he does each of those steps. (well, except the hot glue gun. I might let him try that this year, though. Maybe. Man, the thought of Mark with a glue gun is a little scary.) Not all in one day, but with the outline, he can see how if he does a little bit at a time, it gets done without overwhelming him. It also lets him see that there's a lot of work involved in creating a good project, so leaving it until the last minute does NOT work.

And as he gets older, I let him take on more and more of the "natural" consequences. He's very forgetful. VERY. (THAT'S another whole post.) When he was younger, he would frequently leave something at home (gym sneakers, his lunch, a library book, etc). He'd call me, I'd drive the two miles to the school and deliver it. As he got older, I'd only do delivery for something that would affect his grade. And as he got a little older, I stopped doing even that. He's now in sixth grade, and I don't deliver to the school for him. At all. Just last week he forgot to put his math homework back in his backpack, and didn't turn it in the day it was due (Wednesday). This year he gets 10 points taken off the grade for each day it's not passed in on time. Now, Wednesdays they go with X. So he wasn't going to be coming home after school where he could get his homework. I decided to cut him a little bit of slack. This is my idea of a little slack:

I called him at his dad's that night. Asked him what he intended to do about his homework. And guided him (without ever actually suggesting it myself) into figuring out that he could ask his dad to drive him by our house in the morning on his way to school and pick it up. He checked with X, X said okay, and I prepared to be up to greet Mark when he picked up his homework.

Which he did not do.

So on Thursday when he came home, I asked him why he never showed up. And he responded with, "I don't know, Dad said last night we could do it but then this morning he just didn't." And when I asked Mark why he, Mark, didn't REMIND his Dad, he just gave me this blank look, followed by dawning comprehension. (oh.my.gosh.)

No school on Friday or Monday. Tuesday (today), he FINALLY passed in his math homework. Two days late, 20 points off automatically, before it even gets graded.

And I ENCOURAGE this penalty. He had another paper that he did in class, and his teacher wasn't happy with his complete lack of effort, so she made him do it over at home. I asked her if she was going to take the 10 points off for passing it in late, and encouraged her to do it.

I'm MEAN that way. I mean, I *could* have rescued him any number of ways on this stuff. But how does that help him? Is he likely to remember stuff in the future if Mom will just bring it to him every time he forgets? (from experience: NO.) Does it teach responsibility? Will it help him in any way, shape, or form in a future career? Nope.

Kira was talking with my dad about first grade the other day. He was asking her if she thought first grade was harder than kindergarten. She answered in the strong affirmative, so he asked her how it was harder.

She said, "In first grade, when you fall down on the playground, they just tell you to GET UP."

Tough love, people. mk

Saturday, October 07, 2006

It's Got a Good Beat

So I've been waiting ages to get Internet capable of actually downloading music in less than forty-five minutes (and sometimes longer....I have files that have been queued for MONTHS), and now that I *can,* what do you think I do with it?

I get tons of Weird Al Yankovic.

In my defense, I do have a pre-teen boy. Who had a friend overnight last night, and somehow Eddie mentioned some song that Weird Al did, and I somehow got into this conversation with them, comparing songs I'd listened to when I was Their Age. And before I knew it, I had 29 Weird Al songs downloaded.

I think it's hysterical the way kids are listening to the SAME STUFF I listened to, and they think it's so cool, until you mention that it's been around since you were young, and then suddenly they look at YOU like you have three heads (WTF).

On the whole three-headed-look thing, I chaperoned Activity Night at the school last night. Grades 5-8. My first assignment was a room where six or seven of the eighth graders had set up camp with a CD player. I walk in, they were dancing. Until they saw me. Then they stopped. I went over to the side, y'know, as out of the way as I could, and the music kept playing, but they were just standing there. Then a song came on, and it was (oh my) one of the Weird Al songs I had just downloaded for Mark. So I blurt out, "I *just* downloaded that" and I got THAT LOOK. In multiple. Yah. So after that I didn't say anything. Even when several of the songs later were stuff I had on my iPod. Stuff (you guessed it) that I'd been listening to since I was Their Age. And still like to dance to.

I KNOW that when I was a teen/preteen, I hated adults who tried to come across like they weren't a thousand years old and totally out of it. But now I AM one of those adults, and y'know what? Revelation! These things don't just die on you. I've got this sixteen year old trapped inside me screaming BUT I LIKE TO DANCE TOO YOU LITTLE SNOTS.

And for the record, I know our kids' math scores aren't what they should be in this country, but try to understand this concept: Thirty-five is NOT EQUAL TO a thousand. Yes, I AM old enough to be your mother (duh), but that does not make me a dinosaur. Still got blood moving in these veins, and it still pumps to a beat, people.

OK, end rant. Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going back to listening to "Livin La Vida Yoda." And maybe a little "Bohemian Polka." mk

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Lov. Ing. It.

Wireless guy came. He was here for about 3.5 hours, ended up having to have the owner come out too and do a software upgrade on the radio installed on the roof of the barn. (note: wireless guy was YUMMY. Too young, though, and probably has a girlfriend anyway. sigh. But still very pretty to look at.) Anyway, I now have wireless installed, and it is much, much faster than the sad, pitiful dialup I have suffered with for far and away too long.

Have had other changes to system as well, including a switchover to Firefox instead of Internet Explorer. And I got AdAware downloaded, as well as updating my Spybot Search & Destroy, and the ZoneAlarm firewall. And made sure my virus definitions were all up to date and did a scan and all. So I've got a fair base level of protection on the computer, and it's all current and everything. Of course, after I ran AdAware, I somehow deleted ALL my cookies, including all my signin stuff for email and blog and all that, so I am grumbly a little. But not too much, 'cause I HAVE FAST INTERNET. I am very very pleased with that.

'Cause wireless guy was here longer than expected, I had to leave immediately after it was hooked up to make it to the school volunteers meeting....didn't even get to play with my new toy!! But I'm okay now, 'cause I've had a few hours with it, have downloaded a few things (very speedy....a 5mb file used to take me 45 minutes to download, now it's more like 45 seconds).

And now of course, because I HAVE faster Internet, I can't think of a single thing I need to do with it. Went to go download a song or two, couldn't think of one I wanted. Total brain freeze.

OK, so now I'm exhausted and heading to bed (where I will surely think of ten million things I immediately have to do on my computer). Even though tomorrow is usually my sleep-in morning (due to kids being at X's on Wednesday nights) I do have to wake up before 8 'cause Mark has to stop by and pick up the math homework that he forgot to bring to school today. He gets 10 points taken off for every day it's late, so if he waited until Tuesday (Friday and Monday the kids have off from school) he'd get docked 20 points right there, even IF he had the whole thing right, which I doubt because he wouldn't let me check it.

(side rant: you would THINK that a kid would appreciate having a mathematician for a mom, someone who could make sure that he understood all his homework and did it correctly. But nooooooooo, not my kid.)

OK, I'm off. Later. mk

Those Magic Changes

Lots of new stuff happening around here. I've got my new car stereo (which I LOVELOVELOVE), I'm getting the wireless Internet hooked up today (they'll show up somewhere between 11 and 1), John's coming to put in the new drain pipe for my basement, hopefully starting the end of this week. All of which are definite improvements in my life, but will be causing a little amount of stress and disruption before the good stuff. :D

S'ok, I've been dealing with a lot of stuff I haven't handled well in the past (mostly social interaction) and seem to be doing okay with it for right now.

I do have a few things that are "pending." I hate pending. I'm impatient at my best, and knowing that I have to WAIT for things is irritating. I'm "pending" on my Medicare Part D application, so that means I'm "pending" on the MaineCare application, and I'm "pending" on the heating program. I'm "pending" results from all the blood tests I had done yesterday, and the tests the doctor ran last week. None of this even includes the home projects that are "pending," like the installation of my fence, which has to wait until John is done with ripping up the lawn to put the pipe in (hopefully I'll get the fence in before the ground freezes); building doors for my shed; getting rid of the big ol' truck my dad has parked here for THREE OR FOUR YEARS that I am veryveryvery impatient to get rid of; installing the window in my shed (right now there's just a big hole in the wall where the old window broke); trying to work on a roofing program, which has to wait until I hear about the heating application; painting the ceiling in the upper hallway; sanding and re-mudding and painting the ceiling and walls in my bedroom; installing the pipe in the trench for the sump pump hoses so they're not snaking across my lawn, which again has to wait until John has done his thing; etc etc.

I suppose I just get it done one step at a time, but man, it's like this big bottleneck right now, and even the thought of getting all this stuff done (on TOP of kid schedules like soccer and STAR and Brownies and HSV, which I have a meeting for this afternoon provided the wireless guy is done by then, 'cause I'm not leaving him here alone), and the housecleaning, which I have neglected horribly, and the laundry that is so far behind it's disgusting.....I need to get back to my checklists, I think.

But right NOW what I need to do is switch over the laundry and continue trying to make the house reasonable for when the wireless guy shows up. Blah. Off I go. mk

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

X is an Idiot (part 27 million)

X called me yesterday to tell me that he's scheduled an appointment for Kira with the pediatrician regarding these meltdowns she's having at his house. And the appointment is on a Tuesday (because the doctor's office isn't open on Wednesdays, when he has the kids). So I said, "so you're going to pick her up?"

Silly me. See, X expected that *I* was going to take her, because *he* has to work. Even though this is a problem that he's been having at HIS house, that I *haven't* been having at my house. Even though every single question the doctor was going to ask was something I wouldn't be able to answer, having y'know, NOT BEEN THERE. Or even kept AWARE of the problem for the last several months. So I tried explaining that to X. And I got:

"But you ARE her mother."

Well, yes, I AM her mother. But I still HAVEN'T BEEN THERE when she's had these big meltdowns. So when the doctor asks "what happens" " what triggers them" "how long does it last" "what do you do to try to calm her down" etc etc, I would be answering repeatedly "I don't know." Um, TOTAL WASTE OF TIME.

And X got MAD at me. How the hell does this become my fault?

Idiot. mk

Monday, October 02, 2006

International Walk to School Week

Well, today was the kickoff of International Walk to School Week. It's not particularly practical to walk to school out here in the boonies, so our elementary school had a half-hour walk around the school building planned for today instead. Families welcome (and encouraged). As soon as I heard about it, I put it right on my calendar. Told the kids I was going. (Mark said fine, but he wasn't walking with me. Apparently walking with your mom in front of the whole school is not high on the 'cool factor' for sixth graders. S'ok, I have an eager first grader as well. She was thrilled I was going.)

So I woke up this morning, excited and eager to go, and it was raining.

It stopped though, and was just overcast and a little drizzly. Called the school, and all systems were still 'go' on the walk unless it was actually pouring. Got to the school right on time, and they were still all in assembly. So we started the walk a little late. Still okay. Looking for my kids, and lo and behold, they were walking together! (Sixth grade and first grade are school "buddies" and apparently buddies were walking together. HA! Take THAT, Mark!) So around and around the school we walked. I was a little surprised to see how few parents actually showed up, considering what an awesome idea it is. (yes, I KNOW a lot of parents work. I also happen to know a lot of parents who stay home, and they weren't there.)

What *also* surprised me was that the walk didn't actually last a half-hour. It was more like fifteen minutes. That was a little disappointing for me. But hey, I did it, and I got a (very) little exercise, and I got to spend a little time with my kids, and I get whatever bonus points are out there for parents who show up at these things, AND I progressed a tiny little bit in my endeavor to be more social. So I count it a success.

Check out the web page for the International Walk to School. mk