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Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Volunteerism - Is it just me?

As I go through this craziness otherwise known as Suburbia, the idea that volunteering ones time is a pretty typical request.  Everyone is asking for volunteers...schools, sports, Girl Sc.outs, Bo.y Scout.s, clubs, fund raisers...everyone.

So, Husband and I try to do our best.  With both of us working, taking care of two young children, and trying to maintain a healthy lifestyle, time is at a premium.  We discuss, plan in advance, and really try to make it work.  At this point, he works full time, works out almost daily (to ward off the heart disease that runs in his family), coaches soccer, basketball, and now girls' lacrosse.  Oh, and assistant coaching boys' lacrosse.  I work in the community as a teacher (so we all know that I am forced to bring work home on an almost daily basis), tutor one night a week for 4-5 hours, take an online course every now and then (that try to kill me slowly), and have often offered to volunteer for the Crazies' activities.  We both keep the house clean, do laundry, fix things around the house, and run the Crazies all over the place for various parties, activities, and special dates.  Oh, we also try to have friends...couple friends and individual.  Oh, we also try to see our families and they're not local.  Not to play the "poor me" card or the "look at how great I am" card, but we are busy people and we like it this way (most of the time).

Recently an email came out from our HOA asking for people to step up and be on the board.  I inquired to see what kind of time requirement it would entail (because I really don't want the HOA to go to the state) and I declined because between all this stuff we're already doing, we actually enjoy spending time together.  The time commitment wasn't that crazy, but it was just one more thing and I really don't think we can do one more thing at this point.  I think I needed to say no...and I did.

The woman completely understood and was very gracious.  I started thinking though.  Where are the people who don't work?  Where are the people who aren't as busy?  Where are the people who actually have the time?  I know they're out there, but what do they do?  Do they just not want to step up?  Are they tired?  Are they sick?  Do they just want to avoid the drama?  I totally get that, but what happens to the people who keep stepping up while everyone else steps back?  Those people are either going to get burned out or they're going to stop volunteering altogether.

Example, the team parent for Husband's just decided that her kid wasn't going to play.  She ignored Husband's emails and finally got back to him and explained what happened.  Fine...whatever.  Things change.  We get that.  He put an email out asking for someone else to step up as team parent (i.e. set up a snack schedule and set up the end of season party) and no one has.  I get that people are busy.  I get that people have multiple children at multiple ages.  I get all of that, but I have stuff too.  

Another example, the lacrosse people sent out an email that they needed girls' coaches for the kindergarten age group.  Husband hasn't played a day of lacrosse in his life, but loves coaching.  He stepped up and was fine with having to take the time to learn the game, understand the fundamentals, and develop plays.  Once he sent out his introduction email, he had a parent email him back offering her help.  She played in high school and loves the game, etc., etc., etc.  He's all like "I appreciate her offering to help out and I'm definitely going to take her up on it, but where was she when they needed coaches?"  

So, what is it?  Are there people who just tend to volunteer and people who don't?  Are people shy?  Are people content to let everyone else do the work?  Do people just not want to make the commitment?  Have they had some sort of drama that makes them shy away from this sort of thing?  What is it???  Enlighten me!

Friday, March 7, 2014

Not Even Sick Days Are My Own

Crazy down!

Hailey has been sick since Saturday...inexplicably sick.  She puked all night Saturday and most of the day Sunday and then it suddenly stopped.

The she got a horrific head cold and terrible headache.

All while suffering a dumb low grade fever that wouldn't go away.

We had a snow day on Monday, so we were all off.

I had a snow day on Tuesday, so Matt went to school and she rested.

She went in on Wednesday seemingly feeling better only to puke all over her classroom after naptime.

Good times.

Husband stayed home with her yesterday b/c I had state testing (if I add up how much money him staying home costs us in comparison with what I bring home, it's laughable and embarrassing).

She seemed fine yesterday afternoon and then she had some tummy/butt issues last night, so I called it.  No need to worry about her puking all over her classroom all day.  Let's give her another day.

So, she's fine and home and I can't teach.

It's not like I mind being home with her.  I actually like it, but this year has been so broken up with snow days and testing and more snow days that I can't really get into a rhythm in my classroom and it's driving me NUTS!!!

Plus, if I am going to burn a sick day, I'd rather it's me that's sick so at least I feel like I'm accomplishing something.

Is that terrible of me?

I'm a bad mother.

Whatever.

So, I'll plan activities, watch Disney, and let her help bake cookies.  She's already called me the "best mother in the entire universe" because I told her that Mac&Cheese could be considered part of a bland diet.  She was pretty psyched about that.

Other than that, the working Mom thing is going pretty well this year.  I'm still tutoring one night a week and that's been fine as well.  I think I was worried that I wouldn't have time for myself and in some ways, that's been true.  My work out schedule has suffered for a multitude of reasons (snows, time, exhaustion), but we're working on getting that back on track.  I'm still cooking most nights of the week, so we're still eating good food.  I am tired, but not exceedingly so.  The class I took definitely took a toll on me, but that's over now and I survived.  I actually enjoy being in the classroom again, so I think that helps a lot.  If I hated my job, I'd want to quit and go back to being a SAHM.  I'm lucky I have a job I love.

That is all for now...random tangent over.  Must take care of "sick" girl.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Winter Bitchfest By the Numbers

100.2: Highest temperature Hailey had this weekend

6:        Number of times Hailey got violently ill this weekend

1029385:  Number of tissues Hailey used when she got a vicious head cold after her puking subsided

0:        Number of time I gagged from the stench of her puke (must be getting better at this Mom stuff)

2:        Number of times Matt offered to help

2937:  Number of times we asked him to help

8:        Number of inches of snow we received

2:        Times I was jealous of Sister and GG being together this weekend

1.5:      Number of minutes I considered going out to help shovel (getting worse at this wife job)

2:         Number of hours school was delayed today

12:       Number of hours between when they called the delay and when they officially closed 

2:         Days of state testing we're supposed to have this week

9:         Current temperature

1:          Crazy at home and one Crazy at school

Here's the bitchfest part...I get that it's snowy and icy and freezing cold.  I get that.  What I don't get is that people take a 2-hour delay as an excuse to sleep in rather than a time to get prepared to leave their house and embark on their day.  I know it's cold and icy, but get up early, de-ice your car, let it warm up, leave your house early, drive slowly, be careful, and get your ass to work!  I think I'm just getting worried about having to make up all of these snow days at the end of the year...either that or I'm just getting old (I am turning 40 this month) and thinking that today's society has gone soft.

I don't know...I just think that these closures are not always warranted.

Disclaimer #1:  I did not drive around the entire county today.  I drove Matt to school and came home.  There were some bad areas.  I survived because I drove slowly.  Everyone else can do the same thing.  That is all.

Disclaimer #2:  I know that they have to be careful because of the buses and everything.  I get that, but again, prepare, leave early, drive slowly.

Disclaimer #3:  I may also be a little bitter because I didn't sleep late.  I had a stalker kid in my bedroom at 6AM just staring at us and sniffling in a totally annoying fashion knowing that we were sleeping/pretending to sleep.  You wanna know why he wanted to be up?  And I quote, "I didn't want to waste my 2-hour delay with no tech."  WHAT????

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Rant

So, we have another 2-hour delay today and I figured what better way to spend my time than to write a blog post.

I have a couple of rants that are inappropriate for Facebook or anywhere else in my life for that matter b/c it's just not worth it.

  1. You do not have to post the weather report on FB every 2 seconds.  If I wanted to torture myself with that information, I would either "like" the weather dude you keep raving about or stay tuned to the Weather Channel.  Since I am doing neither of those things, please assume that I'm just in denial about any impending weather and keep it to yourself.  Better yet, start a special FB page for all those weather dorks.  I'm out.
  2. If you approach me in the grocery store about your child (aka my student), I will not be ready for a conference.  Given the fact that this is my personal time and I do not have my grades in front of me, I will not be prepared for your pointed questions.  I will give you one helpful hint..."he needs to see me for help."  That is all.  Also, as you speak, the only thought that will be floating through my mind is "it's no wonder he's having trouble as you can't seem to use any common sense...how could I expect your child to use common sense?"  
  3. Sister needs support.  They've been sick since December 13th...that's over two months of The Sick, if you're counting.  Head over and give her some love.
  4. This isn't a rant...just something to say.  This is the last week of my course and I finally got a routine nailed down.  I'm almost done...I am proud of myself.  This was the craziest thing I have ever done and the snow days have actually helped me get through it successfully.  The snow days and Husband who took the kids to basketball practice, shopping, birthday parties (aka torture), and anywhere else he could think of.  He's pretty awesome.
  5. The snow this year has been pretty unbearable.  I'm not just talking about the sheer volume and frequency, but the quality of snow has been completely shitty.  It's either been too wet, too icy, or too windy to go out and play.  That makes the snow days stuck in the house even less tolerable.  This last snow was beautiful.  We got 24 inches in total and it was the kind of packable snow that really allows you to have some fun.  So, while Husband was finishing shoveling the driveway (yes, I helped a good bit), I built a snowman with the Crazies.  My question is, why do my snowmen always end up looking like giant penises??  So embarrassing.  Kind of glad it melted quickly!
That is all...rant over.  Feeling much better and ready to start the week!  Thank God this isn't a 5-day week.  I wouldn't even know how to handle that!

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Overwhelmed and it's still January...

Seriously...this is ridiculous.

I just finished answering back 5 birthday party invitations and registering for my course that I HAVE to take this Spring in order to maintain my teaching certification.

I am overwhelmed and it's making my shoulders hurt (although, this could also be my craptastic mattress, but who knows?).

There are so many things I want to do this Spring, but it seems as if I'm already running out of time.

Brief aside:  Yesterday I took M to Homegoods with me.  We had so much fun.  He is an awesome shopper and really knows what he wants (and now he's tall enough to quietly put it in the cart, so I have to be on my toes).  It was so nice to get away with just him.  I think he's been craving that.

Okay, back to my original story.  I printed the syllabus for my online course and it's 26 pages...26 fucking pages for an online course.  What the WHAT???

You're killin' me Smalls.

When am I going to do that on top of working, parenting, exercising, gymnastics, dance, basketball, birthday parties, grocery shopping, cleaning, organizing, reading, showering, laundry-ing, and tutoring?

Oh, and maybe I should have a social life and spend time with Husband.

Maybe.

Then there's my 40th (which I have no idea what we're doing), a friend's 40th which is in Vegas and while I totally want to go, I don't see how I could fit it in with the end of school being right around that time.  Oh, and who wants to watch my kids?

(crickets)

Then there's the fact that I'm trying to get a weekend together with GG and Sister so that we can hang out and have fun and that's turned into a total CF.  Why is it that finding a weekend where three people can do something all together is just ridiculously difficult?

Anyway, I think I'm just venting.  I'm really hoping that this course won't take up as much time as it seems.  The way it's laid out does seem pretty decent and organized and I'm smart, so it definitely won't take me as much time as it would take a dumb person.

Oh, and my Dad's moving and we have a gazillion birthday parties for family...and both kids are doing lacrosse this Spring for which Husband thinks he'll coach for BOTH teams b/c there isn't anyone else volunteering.  

Why doesn't anyone volunteer yet everyone thinks these things should be made available to them?

Oh, and we are also considering getting more involved in our HOA rather than let it get taken over by the state.  Anything the state touches falls apart.

I'd also like to have time to get some decent undergarments (it's like I'm a hobo) and some decent work out clothes.  I want to try them on so I'm not in yoga pulling my pants out of my butt like a 12-year old.

Maybe I could also get some Spring clothes in the mix because they're not going to grow themselves in my closet and I'm really lacking in that area.

Oh, and when in the world will I be able to see my friends from college when we finally did pick a date and one of them backed out (for legitimate reasons, but still)?

Then there's school...gotta grade all those papers.

I just need to chill a little bit.  I need to get it all in perspective and just take it in stride.  Maybe I just needed to write about it...a little vent never hurt anyone.

I'll be fine.  I'll get it all done.  I am woman, hear my roar.

Roar.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

It's a Brand New Year - Project List 2014

This year has been nuts.

Nuts, I tell ya!

Between moving into a new house last Fall (yes, it's been over a year and I still don't have curtains in my living room) and starting a new job this year, I've been a woeful blogger.

I can't make any promises that it will get better either.

Here is what I can do.  I can make a list of projects that I will tackle each month this year and stick to it...or try my damndest to stick to it.

January - Organize holiday decorations in the basement.  This is going to go beyond the typical throwalltheChristmasstuffinaboxandhopeforthebest.  This is going to assign a shelf for Easter crap, Halloween crap, and designate an entire wall for Christmas.  I am also going to make sure that necessary baking/cooking things are accessible and throw away all of these damn boxes from Christmas.  The recycling people love us so much.  Oh, and frame our pictures...good frames, not cheap.

February - Guest room overhaul.  Things will be donated.  Bins will be emptied.  Capiz chandelier that has moved from place to place will be hung somewhere.  Guest room will be guest-y.  Oh, and I will hang shit on the walls.

March - Dining room, living room, and foyer will be painted.  Living room curtains will be decided upon and hung.  Prune hydrangeas, decide on mulch, work on rock area in backyard, trim shrubs around pool.  I will be very VERY tired in March (plus, I turn 40, so I'll be old too).

April - Master bedroom will get curtains.  Things will be hung on the walls.  Nana's antique chair will be reupholstered. 

May - Dining room chandelier will be hung (I know which one I want...I just need to have the cash now).  Chairs may be purchased.  Mirror in dining room hung.

June - Deck and yardwork.

July - Office painted and organized.  Dry sink refinished and moved into dining room.

August - Chillllllll...nothing, no work, nothing.  Enjoy the last few weeks of summer.  Go on vacation.

September - Have piano tuned.  Possible start of kitchen remodel contractors?  

October - Finish dining room with art, other decorative crap, and finishing touches.

November - Bathrooms...whether it's reorganizing the closets or throwing away old towels, we will need an update.

December - Nothing again...just try to get through in one piece.

What's on your project lists for 2014?


Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Christmas Eve 2013

It's Christmas Eve.

The excitement has no bounds.

I sit here on my couch, tree lights on, watching Pokemon, drinking coffee out of the biggest mug given to me by one of my students.

One Crazy is awake (the boy).

One Crazy is still in Snoozeland and I don't intend on disturbing her.

Husband is at work.

The stockings are hung.

The presents are half wrapped.

The schedule and food for today and tomorrow are pretty much set.

I am content.

Between work, friends, family, marriage, laundry, and marriage, I am content.

I was thinking about perfection yesterday...how so many people want to make sure to cram every party of Christmas with memorable moments created year after year...even if there isn't enough time.

This was a very short December.  In that time we were able to cram in Christmas cards, a tree, getting all the Christmas houses out and on display, decorating the outside of the house, shopping (mostly online), visits, dinners, our annual Christmas light trip, a visit to Downtown Main Street for Santa and local shopping, our annual picture with the Mall Santa, Friends Christmas, returning to church on a regular basis, and playing in the snow.

We didn't get to see the Nutcracker.  We didn't get to see the lights on 34th Street (a big deal in Baltimore, hon).  We didn't get to sing Christmas carols anywhere.  We didn't have a Christmas party like I wanted.  We didn't make oodles of cookies.  We didn't get to a Christmas train display.  We didn't cut down our own tree this year.

And I'm okay with missing all of those things.

Perfection is in the eye of the beholder.  If I feel like I've done well enough and my kids are happy, that is perfection to me.  Personally, I find the quest for perfection like trying to gain a foothold on a mountain during an avalanche.  While you may attain it for a few seconds, it will all change in the blink of an eye.  Whether it's a crying child or a husband's heavy sigh because a line is too long...perfection seems fleeting.

However, what if we looked at it in a different way?  What if we took those split seconds of perfection and put them all together?  Could we, at that moment, say we attained perfection?  Could we view Christmas as perfect when we take those little snippets, piece them together, and create our memories?  Yes...it can be done.

The Crazies won't remember the things we didn't get to see this year.  They'll remember what we were able to do.  

They'll remember the light display and the toy soldiers setting off rockets.  They'll remember all of us pretending that those rockets blew up our car and laughing hysterically at that moment.  They'll remember the silly noises that Daddy made after we left the aquarium on Christmas Eve Eve and giggling uncontrollably while begging for more.  They'll remember watching Daddy on the roof stringing up the lights and "helping" to hold the ladder.  They'll remember getting the brand new toy helicopter stuck in the very tall evergreens just as it started to rain.  They'll remember Mommy saying a bad word when she spilled flour all over the counter while making cookies.  They'll remember getting our Christmas tree from a parking lot to support the Boy Scouts.  They'll remember the cantata at church and all of the instruments and singers.  They'll remember all of these little things and they'll piece them together as their own rendition of perfection.

After all, isn't that what we all do?  We take the good, throw away the bad, and hold on to what we need to make Christmas perfect.

I think that's okay.  I think it's okay to disillusion ourselves like that.  I think it's better than holding the bitterness and loss and sadness.  It's okay to want only the good and to enjoy what we have rather than pining away for more than we could ever make possible.

I think that as I sit here on Christmas Eve 2013 typing away on my less than reliable blog, it's okay that I haven't written every single thought or been thankful for every single thing in my life, or shared every single experience here on my blog.  It's okay because they're all in my heart.

I hope you all have a great Christmas and a Happy New Year...here's to holding on to our version of perfection and releasing the bad...no one needs it anyway.


Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Top 10 Ways the Crazies Have Screwed Me Over (recently)

10.  Having to pay out my ass for school pictures...seriously $150...what a racket!

9.  Winter clothes...jackets, gloves, hats, snow pants, socks, more gloves, more hats, long underwear, pants, sweatshirts, and more socks.

8.  No sex life.  None.

7.  There is shit all over every table that I own...and none of it is mine.

6.  Lunches.

5.  Halloween candy...knowing when to say yes and knowing when it's time to say no (and then shoving it all in my piehole like a fatass).

4.  Drama (this is just from Hailey, but it's unbearable).

3.  Not doing shit fast enough...then complaining that we're late.

2.  Giving me this sore throat.  You can only get coughed on, sneezed on, and spit on so many times by these little germbags before it catches up with you ("haha...I just spit on you Mommy...haha")

1.  Interrupting any and all conversations I am trying to have with Husband.  It's impossible to discuss anything until after bedtime...and then I'm too damn tired.

How are your kids currently screwing YOU over?

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

a few things that are bugging the crap out of me (without caps b/c i'm too lazy)


  • the parents that ask me dumb questions rather than looking the information up themselves.
  • kids that don't listen (that would be directed at my own kids).
  • kids that don't try (that would be directed at some of my students...not all).
  • the fact that my favorite yoga instructor only has one class a week.
  • grading papers.
  • laundry.
  • missing birthdays (seriously...i can't even make it to the store to get cards much less remember whose birthday is coming up).
  • kid crap in my living room (i've started to move it out on a daily basis...it's fun to yell for 10 minutes straight while they give me their eye rolls and heavy sighs...no, really...it is).
  • iphone at the dinner table (not me, btw).
  • laundry
  • crap on the stairs.
  • not having a money tree.
  • missing my family.
  • a weird hair that grew out of my chin once that i can't find anymore, but keep searching for it anyway b/c i know it's going to come back when i least expect it.
  • roots (hair, not tree).
  • the fact that my neighbor keeps giving the crazies food that i wouldn't.  i feed my damn kids.  i just don't feed them that crap.
  • the fact that parenthood isn't on at 9:00.
  • the fact that wntw is over.
  • laundry (did i already mention that?)
  • the fact that i need to go back to school for my certification and the only program that i'm remotely interested in taking isn't open for enrollment yet b/c the gov't needs to approve the description of the course.  wth??
  • crazies who want to do 5 million activities and having to tell them to scale it back.
  • honey booboo's mother on the biggest loser.
  • dead ends (hair, not the streets).
  • getting dressed...every.damn.day.
  • not really keeping this list to a "few" like i promised in my title.
  • i am done now.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Twin Moment...had to document

At approximately 4:43 am, I heard Hailey
calling my name. I stumbled out of bed to her room. When I got there, she claimed that she had a bad dream and that she "needed" Matt...that she missed him. 

I tried to explain that Matt was sleeping and that I couldn't wake him up. She was staring at me like I had told her chocolate was illegal. All of the sudden, Matt comes  walking in the room, perches himself on the side of her bed, and stares at her with with concern.

She conveys her dream to him and I ask him if he wants to hold her hand. He does and then he lays down next to her while she stroked his hair. 

It was so damn sweet and I rarely see it and it just made me happy. 1.5 hours later, I was ready to duct tape them to opposite side of the house, but that moment was perfection. 

And they both went back to sleep which was totally awesome. 


Sunday, October 13, 2013

Just Barely Above the Water

When 2013 started, I chose a word.  The word was SETTLE.

I can tell you that there are certain parts of this life of mine that are settled.  My marriage is good as gold.  The Crazies are settled into their school routine finally.  I am finally settling back into my portable (long story...two moves b/c of mold remediation...ick).  

However, I don't feel settled.

My youngest brother had a seizure last weekend.  No particular reason.  Nothing was found in subsequent tests.

It scared the crap out of me and then I realized that I hadn't even really dealt with my feelings about this until today...a goddamn week later.

That's unsettling.

Why did it take so long?  What was I doing?  Why haven't I called him?

I have texted him, but that's not enough.

That's just not enough.

With all that I'm doing, it's not enough.

That's unsettling.

I am not feeling settled.

There is so much.  There is the house, the Crazies, Husband, GG, sister, Cassie, Husband's family, BFF, friends, co-workers, students, parents, tutoring, bills, shopping, cleaning, organizing, grading, eating, cooking, laundry (omgthefuckinglaundry), just keeping the damn train on the tracks.

There is just so much.

It's no wonder I feel overwhelmed by what I have to do for this life and underwhelmed by life itself.

I'm just a cog in a machine.

A machine that will not run without me, but is barely running with me.

There are times when I feel I can barely take a breath.

I know that it takes a lot to settle back into being at work and not having the time I used to.  I get that.  It's just that when do you get that back?  I try to use my friend as an example...she went back to work 2 years before I did.  I barely heard from her the first year and now things are better.  Logically I know things will get better...I just can't see the light at the end of this particular tunnel yet.

I know I will.

I feel small parts of life as I go through my days.  The delighted gasp of a student as she finally figures out how to simplify exponential expressions.  The giggles of the Crazies as they run around trying to get their shoes on in the morning.  The quick hug from Husband when I get home at 8:30 at the end of my longest day with 4 hours of tutoring after teaching a full day.  The kiss on my cheek from GG as I drop her at the airport.  I feel those.  The rest of it is just a blur.

Maybe I'm just whining.

Maybe I have a valid point.

Maybe I just need a good yoga class to get it all out.

Maybe I just need to give myself a year of living in this routine and then start to branch out and do more.

Maybe I just need to cut myself a break.

Maybe I need to plan a vacation.

Maybe it needs to stop raining.

Maybe I need to give myself some quiet time every day to reflect.

Maybe I need to blog more.

Maybe this is just how life is and I need to get used to it.

I don't miss being home with the Crazies.  I don't think we could have lasted one more year being together that much (sounds sad, doesn't it?).  I think we were ready. I miss my time being my own.  I miss being able to do things when I wanted to do them.  I miss working out in the morning on my schedule.

I know it will get better.  I know I will settle further into this life.  I know I will look back on my days as a SAHM with fondness and thank God I got the chance to do it in the first place.

Until then, I'll just keep my head barely above water and pray that Hailey's runny nose doesn't turn into more.  The train really may fall off the tracks if I get a sick child this week.

Thanks for letting me vent.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

College

Was just watching The Middle from last week and realized (through lots of stupid tears) that I will be sending my kids off to college in a mere 12.5 years from now. I'm going to be a basket case on that ride back home. That is all. 

Thursday, September 19, 2013

The Latest and Greatest

So, here's it is:

  • I am a terrible gardener.  I had high hopes, but it's turned into a weed patch and I don't even know what to do.  Husband has banned me for life.
  • I am so glad to be back at work, but there are some days that I'm exhausted.  I was out for a training for the past few days and came back to my entire portable being moved b/c of mold issues in my original portable.  Today was exhausting b/c everything was turned upside down.  I still think I was a good teacher.
  • Apparently no one knows how to dress anymore.
  • My training was actually valuable and useful.  I can't remember the last time I've said that about a training.
  • The Crazies are adjusting.  They love school and have been much more pleasant in the mornings and evenings.  I'm glad that it's evened out b/c there was a very rough patch for a while.
  • Matt's night terrors have almost disappeared (the ones that started with his hospital stay).  When he does have them, he's gripping at his mouth, so I'm almost positive that it's related.
  • Hailey is such a happy girl, but we're worried that she's using cuteness to get past not knowing things.  When we read with her, she gets all cute when we ask her words and it distracts us from making her work at them.  We've realized what's happening and we're taking steps to mitigate the situation...LOL!
  • I am so lucky to be able to sit inside my house with the Crazies outside and listen to them play.  I used to be a nutjob where we lived b/c of the street.  This is a zillion times better.
  • I am pretty damn sick and tired of having Legos in my living room.
  • I miss talking to my family whenever I can.  Things are nuts and whenever I'm free, they're not.
  • I backed in my garage door the other day when I was leaving for work.  I know I put it up when I got into the garage.  I'm starting to wonder if I hit the button again when I was leaving.  User error prevails.
  • We're closing the pool this weekend.  Maybe I'll take just one more dip.  It's been freezing here...I doubt it.  Would you?
  •  Have you seen this kid?  He's freaking awesome.
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Thursday, September 5, 2013

My Big Day Off

In the past five years of having twins, I have never ever had a day off. 

A full day off.

Where nothing was really expected of me.

Until today. 

I had off from school and the Crazies did not.

I had some guilt sending them to school when we could have spent the whole day together, but then again...that guilt didn't stick around too long.

I realized I had never had a day off...ever.  Did I mention that?

So, I woke up early to see Husband off...unbeknownst to me, he had turned his alarm off, so I actually woke up early to play games on my phone.

Good times.

Then everyone started to wake up.

The Crazies came in and were psyched to see Daddy.

I was mad that Husband slept in and I was the only one awake for so long.

He sensed my irritation and went downstairs to make breakfast for the Crazies.

I got ready for my day.

I was going to wear regular clothes so they didn't know I was off.  They'd freak if they knew I had off and they didn't.

I dressed casual and told them I had meetings all day.  I was not about to get into work clothes.

I came downstairs and Husband offered to drop them off at school.

I was stunned.

Not that he asked, but I literally didn't know what to do with myself.

They were dressed, fed, and someone besides me was about to transport them.

It was like being in the Twilight Zone.

Anyway, they all piled into Husband's car and they were off.

I shut the front door (without waving good-bye for which I was in trouble later) and just stood there.

I started to plan out my day.

I actually made a list.

The first thing I had to do was go to the grocery store.  I wanted to get there before all the SAHMs and old people.

I went.  I shopped.  I came home.

I didn't say no or talk through clenched teeth once.

I set my timer for 30 minutes and graded papers.

I went to the spin class without feeling guilty that the Crazies were in the Kids Zone.

I dropped off soccer uniforms without explaining why we weren't going inside to see their friends.

I got my car washed.  This was actually pretty boring without the Crazies.

I got a chai latte at S-bucks without yelling at one of them to stop screaming their cake pop order while I'm trying to give my order.

I came home and made an eggplant parmesan without having to hear "I'm not eating that" or " that's GROSS!!"

I walked the dog.

Well, the dog walked me, but whatever.

I talked on the phone with a friend for an entire 30 minutes uninterrupted.

I showered.

I didn't have to explain to anyone why I wasn't drying my hair and making it "all pretty" and just throwing a hat on b/c I was getting my hair cut later on anyway...and who cares?

I graded more papers.

I decided that we were having leftovers for dinner rather than making crabcakes.  I technically didn't mind making the crabcakes, but I had used the last egg for the eggplant and wasn't getting any more until I picked up the CSA...there went the crabcakes.

I picked up our CSA without having to talk to any chickens or alpacas.

I unloaded the CSA without anyone asking for the iPad.

I talked to GG for a bit.

I went to my haircut.

I enjoyed my haircut b/c Husband told me he wanted to pick the Crazies up too...letting me completely off the hook from worrying that I was taking too long and delaying his work out.

He's pretty damn awesome, huh?

I came home to a quiet and empty house again (this is where I started getting a little lonely) because they had opted to go to the gym with Husband.

I watched an entire episode of What Not to Wear.

I graded more papers...seriously, WTF??  LOL!

I realized I hadn't wiped anyone else's ass all day.

I heard them arrive in the driveway being all loud and boisterous.

I was so happy to see them and hear what friends they saw at the gym and hear that Matt has a girlfriend!

I had a great day and I'm glad that I gave it to myself and that I have an awesome husband who took anything remaining off my plate!

What would you do with a true day off??

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Back To Work...end of week #2

Here are some of my observations and experiences from the past week:

  1. Some of my sleep issues have passed.  I had terrible anxiety (cue shaking, crying, and being wide awake until 1:30am the night before the Crazies' party) last Friday and couldn't sleep.  Prior to that, I was waking up ridiculously early in the morning and not going back to sleep.  I think all of that has gotten a bit better.  I don't know if I can attribute that to finally meeting my co-workers and spending some quality time in my classroom or because I started trying to do yoga on a more regular basis, but something is better and I'm glad.  Operating on no sleep sucks monkey butt.
  2. This week at camp was definitely tougher on the Crazies.  They cried on the playground most mornings.  Hailey would cry in the morning and Matt would cry himself to sleep.  I don't know what it is.  They have fun there, enjoy their time, and have good things to say.  I think it's hard for them to be away from me and their house for that long during the day.  It's definitely been an adjustment.  
  3. When the Crazies cry, I cry.  Ugh.  Oh, and then Husband looks at me like I'm nuts.  Good times.
  4. If you have things done the night before, your mornings are infinitely smoother.
  5. Warning kids about changes or what will take place is the key.  I have found that by communicating things to the Crazies, I can intercept any questions or problems ahead of time rather than in the moment.  This goes way back to my training in special education and I truly feel that it applies to most kids...and adults for that matter.
  6. When you've worked all week long and your kids have an awesome birthday party, sometimes you just want to be in the moment rather than taking a million pictures...or even one.  That's right...I neglected to take even ONE picture at their 5th birthday party.  I was just busy enjoying the moment, the crazy kids running around the yard, Husband at the grill with 84 hot dogs, the kids squealing when they went down the water slide or jumped in the pool, pinatas being hit with such force that you wondered how no one lost their heads, and adults being able to actually enjoy themselves because we had the foresight to hire a life guard (former tutoring student of mine...best money spent).  I just wanted to be there...and I was.
  7. Knowing that your work wardrobe is nicely rounded makes you feel better about starting school.  GG took me shopping last weekend like I was a kid in junior high and it was awesome.  Shoes were my #1 worry b/c I've worn nothing but boots, sneakers, and flops for the past 5 years.  She bought me 4 pairs of adorable flats (embracing my petiteness after wearing heels for a few days...how did I do that way back when??).  I am a happy girl.  Oh, and I finally found navy blue pants (harder than you'd think) and now I'm done.
  8. Purchasing a work wardrobe when you have no income presents a challenge.
  9. Weekends are freaking awesome when you work b/c you can actually do things that you enjoy and it's like a treat!  When I was at home all the time, I didn't really look forward to weekends because it was just the same thing with another adult at home.  Now I'm planning weekends, planning along time, planning things to do on my "off time" because it really IS off time.
  10. Knowing you have to iron some of your work clothes is daunting.  I haven't ironed in YEARS...everything just went back in the dryer!

Things I'm nervous about for this coming week:
  • Crazies starting school...they're in separate classrooms which they weren't for camp and I'm just hoping that a more structured routine will do them good.
  • The first day of school.  Enough said.
  • Being so tired I can't function.
  • My triceps swinging in the breeze if I wear a sleeveless shirt.
  • Eating well.
  • Exercising.
 So, what's up with you guys?

Friday, August 16, 2013

Quick Updates After My First Week Back at Work

  • I'm so glad I'm back.  I've missed teaching.
  • I'm excited about my year.
  • The Crazies have tolerated the changes very well.
  • Matt still tells me he wants to quit full day school every day when I ask him how his day was.
  • Hailey loves it.
  • I am tired, but not overwhelmingly so.  
  • I'm sure that will change next week when staff is back.
  • I'm sure that will change drastically the week after when kids are back.
  • I'm pretty sure that I'll still be glad to be back.
  • I haven't worked out at all this week except a mini-session of yoga in the living room last night.  I miss it.
  • That's next week's task.
  • I have barely thought about the Crazies party tomorrow and will be up all night making tissue paper pompoms.
  • I need some more clothes.
  • I desperately need shoes.
  • I have no idea how I wore heels every day.
  • That makes me feel old.
  • Pretty sure I'm taking the one pair of pants I bought to be worn with heel back to the store to be exchanged for the petite size to avoid torture.
  • I can't wear heels with dresses...just can't do it.
  • Can't believe my "babies" will be 5 on Sunday...WTH???
  • I gotta go to work...and maybe get a Star.bucks on the way...holla!

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Decision Made

So, I chose the school 7 minutes from my house.  It was a no brainer.  The money stinks and teachers are grossly underpaid considering their education and what they have to put in on any given day, but there are some things you can't buy.

A short commute.

Being close to home.

Being close to your kids.

Teaching in your community.

Not being under constant pressure.

I feel like this school will allow me to teach.  It will allow me to better my community.  It will allow me to forge meaningful relationships with my students and really be the kind of teacher that is needed in today's world.  

So, that was my decision.

Thanks for all of you guys out there who were so supportive.  I really appreciate.  

I can promise you this...next summer I will not sell a house, I will not buy a house, I will not move, I will not find a new job (unless I totally hate this one, but I don't think I will).  I will have a relaxing and enjoyable summer with less stress...so help me God.

Friday, August 2, 2013

Who Knew?

Who knew that it would be so hard for an experienced, witty, intelligent teacher to get a job these days?

Who knew?

The job at the school 5 minutes didn't pan out.  They knew who they wanted to hire and went in that direction.  I get that.  It could have happened to me with my old principal.  I get that.

It sucks, but I get it.

The job at the school farther away is still open to the best of my knowledge.

I get a call from the supervisor in my county who says that the school 5 minutes away didn't pan out, but that there is a school 7 minutes away that suddenly has an opening.

WHAT?

Okay, so now I need to meet with the principal, but it's pretty much a done deal.  They want me.

Great.

I ask about salary.

She says that since the county hasn't been getting pay increase for the last few years (WHAT?) that they may not put me on the salary level that I deserve.

WHAT?

I don't want to make this all about money b/c there are TONS of things that will be better about this position, but money make the world go round, right?

We're not talking a small about of money either...possibly over $10,000.  

Not exactly small change.

So, what to do...what to do.  I want this wrapped up by this afternoon.  I don't want to have this hanging over me for the weekend.  I will make a decision today.

I will keep you posted b/c I'm sure you're on the edge of your seat, right?

Don't fall off.

BTW, I mentioned that I wasn't sure what I would do with my kids when I was arranging the interview with the principal of the 7 minute away school and he said to bring them...so, yeah...I'm bringing the Crazies to my interview.  The Crazies that are currently shouting "FREEZERAY!!!" in my living room.  This should be interesting.

Oh, and my blender was in the dishwasher that we forgot to run last night, so my breakfast was grilled chicken with blue cheese dressing drizzled with hot sauce rather than my typical smoothie.

I hope I don't get gassy from the hot sauce...that would make things even more perfect!  LOL!!!

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Even Though I am Dramatic, I Could NEVER be an Actress

Seriously...the build-up, the part right before you give your audition, the actual audition (of which I'm sure most people block out), the after party, and then the waiting.

I could never do it on a daily basis.

I am a basket case.

So, I had two interviews a few weeks ago.  One was at my old school and I didn't get that one.  We've covered this.

The other one was a school in which I was interested.  Different/more difficult demographic, but good subject matter and good age.  It was a hike, but one I was willing to take.  My former principal informed me they had chosen a different candidate.

I was bummed.

I resigned myself to another year of tutoring and started to get myself in that mind-set.

Then I decided, on a whim, to check out the application for the county in which we reside.  Makes sense, right, but for whatever reason, I was holding off.

So, I signed in and realized that all of my information from my application in my old county would transfer right over.  Hit enter and we're done.  Now, I didn't really think this would go anywhere b/c there weren't any publicized openings in the county.  I just thought it would go on record and we'd see if anything materialized over the course of the year.

Then I got a call about a math opening at a middle school...5 MINUTES FROM MY HOUSE!!!

I was psyched.  I set up the interview.  I had hope again that I'd be in the classroom.

Then I got a call from my old county's HR dude.  The second school wanted to offer me a position.

What the fucking fuck???  I thought they went in a different direction!  What is happening???

I tell the HR dude that I have an interview in another county and I will let him know.

I find someone to watch the Crazies...I love having good friends.

I put my interview dress back on...yes, I have one interview dress and I will use it for all it's worth.

I put my heels back on...how the hell did I wear these damn things all day long for YEARS???

I head over the interview and I am freaking.out.

I can't get my shit together.

I sweat, shake, and hate on my shaky voice for half of the interview.  Who wouldn't with four people taking turns asking questions???  It was like a shooting range!

I finally hit my groove and started using the lingo and giving concrete examples of what I would do in certain situations.  I was remembering things and bringing them up at appropriate times.  I was using Common Core language...ugh.  I was positive.  I was honest.  I was witty.

Then I walked out and started doubting myself immediately.

I hate myself for that.

I picked up the Crazies and started to dissect the interview, but there are seriously parts that I cannot remember...at.all.

So, I write my thank you email to the principal and math supervisor.  I thank them for their time...yadda, yadda, yadda.

I shoot off an email to HR dude telling him that I'll know by Friday.

I get a response back that totally throws me for a loop and makes me think that I've lost the job that is 5 MINUTES AWAY FROM CASA DE CRAZIES!!!

Something like "it was great to interview you...hope we cross paths at some point...you've got a bright future ahead of you."

Sounds like a good-bye, right????

Then I get all down in the dumps, but I can't b/c H&M are both having friends over and I have to be Mommy Funmaker.

So, I do that for a while and remain completely on edge.

Now I find out that the principal of the school in my old county wants more candidates b/c he doesn't want to be hung out to dry.  I TOTALLY get that, but now I'm panicked about being left with NOTHING!!!!

Ugh...how do actresses do this?

Oh, and the reason this is ending so abruptly (aside from the fact that I have no answers and could go batshit crazy trying to dissect the emails) is b/c I am about to finish my beer and making dinner, so I have shit to do.  Did I mention that New Teacher Orientation could start next Friday???  Not like I have a fucking life to plan or anything!!!!!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

PYHO - I Was Wanted...for a minute



Yesterday I had an appointment at Go.ddard regarding changes in the Crazies' school schedules.  In light of the recent, "you're a great teacher, but aren't familiar enough with the Common Core, so we can't find a job for you" ordeal, we are going to have to scale back the kids' schooling.  

And I'm fine with that.

We have to be able to live within our means and we made the decision to send them for an extra year (at a much steeper price) thinking that I wouldn't have a problem getting a job.

And then I did.

And I'm fine with that because as I get older, I realize that things don't always go as we plan.  

(and oh.my.god does that suck ass)

Who knew I wouldn't learn all of my most important lessons in my 20s?

(my mother probably knew)

Anyway, as we discussed the changes, we involved all sorts of contingency plans.  What if I get hired for a long term sub position?  Can we add hours to the day?  How much will it cost?  What is the difference?  What will hold our spot?  All of that shit.  I mentioned how frustrated I was that we even had to have this conversation.  Then she said it...

"Well, we're hiring if you're interested.  I think you'd be great."

Holy shit...really?  You think I'd be great?

(cue shy gushing and blushing that makes me want to kick my own ass)

Okay, slow down there, cowgirl...ask some questions.

"What is the age group?"
"How many hours per week?"
"What is the pay?"

"18-24 months"
"That depends"
"$12 per hour"

Oy...all of that is not exactly what I had in mind, but for a minute, I was wanted.

Someone thought that I would be good enough to do a job that was in my field.  

(kinda, sorta...I make things work when I'm desperate)

Someone wanted to hire me.

(looking back, someone wanted me to fill out an application)

Then she mentioned that the tuition would be 50% off as well.

Can't beat that with a bat, but all of the other stuff?  That didn't work for me.  I'd still have to tutor at night (making 5x as much per hour while tutoring and not wiping asses).  I wouldn't have time to take courses which I need in order to maintain my certification.  It would not allow me the flexibility for me to take a job within my desired county if there was a long term leave position.  Also, this is not what I really want to do.

As I spoke with Husband, he immediately showed concern at my hopeful giddiness.  He's an engineer...that's what they do.  I should be used to it.

(but after 10 years, I always expect him to get as excited as I do)

Upon returning home, some Crazy did something that set me off.

(shocker...have I told you how petrified I am that we don't have ANY camps for August???)

I sent them both up to their rooms and started weeping.  I started weeping that I was so desperate to be wanted that I was willing to avoid any and all logical thinking.  Hmmm...that's how some of my worst relationships started way back when...not a good cycle to get back into.

This wasn't a logical decision.  Yes, 50% off the tuition was incredibly attractive, but I wouldn't be paid what I deserve, I don't particularly like other people's snotty kids, and I wouldn't have time to pursue what I need to do to get back into the classroom.

It's a lose-lose.

(except for the tuition and that is still niggling at me)

Anyway, I'm not going to do it.  It was nice to be wanted for a minute, but it's not what is good for me or my family.

And I'm fine with that.

Thanks, Shell...it's been a while and I needed to get it out!