So many adventures. So few times.

My photo
My life is pretty dull. I play with a toddler, watch a lot of Yo Gabba Gabba and experiment with the crock pot. I have no bed time and I find humor in Laffy Taffy jokes. Conan O'Brien is my anti-drug.

Friday, May 26, 2017

My favorite horn dork

Regardless of political opinion or news station preference, everyone needs to drop everything and tune into Fox News this weekend. No, seriously.

They are running a story about Bugles Across America (they provide bugle players to play Taps for veteran funerals around the US) and The Getzen Company for Memorial Day weekend. The husband is going to be on national tv! Eek!

Keep your eyes open for this nerdball!

The full story will air Monday night at 5pm CST during Special Report with Bret Baer. It may also air Saturday and Sunday in an abbreviated format. So, yeah. TUNE IN! 

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

The selfie game

I had a startling moment of clarity yesterday - image is the most important thing, no matter the outcome. We all do it. We portray ourselves as devil-may-care or the martyr or as the perfect parent or as the fashion accessory parent. This doesn't mean I don't do it too. I'm horrified at the idea that people will think I don't care enough, or that I'm an unfit parent. Publicly admitting mulling over the ramifications of suicide? That puts a bullseye on your back, after the respectful time allotment has passed. "It's been three weeks or so. Okay, she's fine." I've never experienced so many odd side glances at myself in my life. Before that, I publicly talked about my body, and my body image. I've had people suggest I maybe tone up before being so candid - so I stopped talking about my self-described successes and downfalls of my bodyfat percentage.

The point of this is that I ostracized myself yesterday and I ostracized myself a month ago and I'll most likely do it again. And again. I tried to get deep and talk about a bigger picture thing, tried to talk about something I didn't expect to affect my family. Especially not now; especially not at this age level. I had **multiple** people tell me or message that kids are kids. I shouldn't be so open with my blog. I'm being so over-dramatic. And so the next worry is, "Does the world think I'm just creating drama when there is none? Does the world think I'm an unfit parent because I didn't pay closer attention to what was taking place? Do they think I'm unfit because I stepped in? I corrected other peoples' kids; I corrected my own kid? I may have portrayed another parent as unfit because actions took place they weren't aware of. Am I unfit because kids were unfairly awful to each other in my own home without me being aware of it? Am I wrong in taking my child out of the situation? Should I have left her to fight her own batttles? Should I have caused a scene?" It truly never ends.

We as a human race cannot live like this! It's exhausting to constantly tiptoe around to play meek or overplay a role of carelessness or scrub our home because guests and pretend it's the natural state or suck in our stomachs and stick out our chest or anything else, solely to project an image.

I haven't been super social on Facebook lately, but it was suggested I turn it off for a week for the sake of my family. So that I can be a mom instead of a worrywart. Am I still on Instagram? Um, YES. I clearly have to still put up bi-weekly images of myself with the perfect chin position and teethy smile.

But the social comparisons, the worrying, the fear of being an outcast, the pride of a friends list number, the perfect profile picture, blah blah blah... I'm done.

...Clearly for only a week though. I'm not some kind of monster!

Sunday, May 21, 2017

The ongoing b-word ((updated))

*****I was informed by a mother involved, my daughter has previously been the bully. She has been the aggressive child along with some others, and that is not okay in the slightest. I will be going to her school today in a few moments to discuss this further with her, and I will do my damnedest to make sure she never has the nerve to try it again. I'm stating this publicly because I do not want her to continue another moment with playing a victim to someone she has apparently terrorized in the past. The point of my writing this wasn't to point fingers or say my child is an angel. It isn't to cast shame on someone else. I want people to be aware that this can happen right in front of our faces without us even knowing, and we need to be diligent with our children to make sure they understand, actions like this are never okay.*****

Bullying. There. I said it. Bullying. It is a nasty word with nasty connotations.  good kids don't bully. My kid doesn't bully. Your kid doesn't bully. And yet this word still exists.  I guess we can all see definition of this word differently. I see it as a person who preys on someone weaker or in a vulnerable situation.

A great opportunity? When several children gang up and decide to not only just leave another out (because honestly, who hasn't done that intentionally or otherwise?) but to actually ridicule and mock that single individual. To make them feel lesser than you. To take that moment to feel bigger and the expense of someone else.. amazingly? Even in front of that individuals mother and father.

When the tears first started flowing, when the drama was first kicked in to gear, I assumed right away as I was made aware of the situation that my child was being dramatic. She wanted access to something someone else had. Okay, suck it up. Take turns. Do something else.
... and then the children started laughing at her in front of me, taunting her. Making a big scene of her discomfort and exclusion. Oh... okay. Encourage her further to do something else.

Like moths to the flame though, my persistent child refused to leave the scene. I left her alone for a few moments thinking I was maybe reading things wrong. I know two of the four or five children involved and I know this isn't their normal behavior. I've watched these kids grow up. I've dug in my purse for Kleenexes for their snotty noses. I've snuck them extra cupcakes at parties in our home because I adore these children. Emma's walls are littered with multiple images of arms linked and eyes shining from over the years.

But lo and behold, the next time I went into the back yard they had her cornered. One of the girls I knew had left the scene and was immediately apologetic. I was in disbelief. I kept thinking I was misunderstanding something taking place right in front of me. And my kid? My tough, bold, silly, strong-willed kid? She crumbled before my eyes. She was defeated. She shrunk inside herself. Even worse, when I told the other girls that they were out of line, they had the gall to turn on me. Can you imagine being a five or six or seven year old girl and getting sassy with someone's mom?! I can't even picture, in my own youth of being bullied for my weight and for my mom's income and for whatever else kids wanted to mock, any words being said to me in front of my mom - let alone TO my mom.

It was the cliche image of the pack of attacking dogs.  They were horrendous. The one remaining girl we know backed off slightly but then joined right back in. In front of me. In front of my husband. With her kicking and screaming, my defiant child was carried from the function since she wouldn't walk away herself. Despite the way she was treated, she still wanted to stay with her friend. She was angry that I removed her, and then she sobbed  because she didn't know why her friends and these strangers treated her this way.

And then I was broken. No one should witness this behavior - no one should experience this behavior first-hand.

 My sadness was refueled later when I saw image after image after image on social media of these beautiful little girls, with huge beaming smiles after we had left the event. I studied these images - they are just kids. They are someones babies. I'm sure the mother of the children I didn't know would have been horrified by their actions, but as it stands they will get to carry on another day. And, although I desperately try to not shelter my daughter from things that will make her stronger in time, I will never allow her to be at any event those children are at.

Talk to your children. Talk again. And again. Make sure they are safe. Ensure they aren't involved in a pack that could potentially leave another child vulnerable to attack. Make it clear that it is never okay to be the attacker. The aggressive one. Make sure they aren't the victim of a pack. Because when it does happen to your kid, the word will be tattooed into your mind.

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Sunrises and Starbucks

 So here I am on this beautiful crisp morning, talking to type in the middle of a street in Geneva, Illinois. No that wasn't a typo. I didn't mean to say Galena. I didn't mean to say Lake Geneva. My husband and I snuck down here for a weekend to celebrate our 8th anniversary. I'm going to be honest, thus far it has been pretty damned relaxing. However, my insomnia continues, so I am on a mission for coffee that wouldn't require me waking my husband. I know there's a Starbucks just down the road but I still prefer smaller coffee shops.

You maybe wondering how I'm doing now. Honestly? About 80 million times better than I was a few weeks ago.

...Until just now, when I realized I'm stuck with Starbucks. Ack! The Washington in me begs for a quality local establishment or 6 in every town. Come on, people! Add a drive thru window and I'll be loyal for life.

Anyway, the meds are adjusting. The sun is shining again. I'm surviving.  Things are so incredibly Rocky there for a little while. I basically had a look at my surroundings and keep myself in check, because truly it my life is pretty great. Yeah, I have got a couple of kids who are total jerks. They are way too spoiled and both love to pick fights with me.  But hey, I have a husband who would do anything for me and truly I would do just about anything for him. I have friends who care and love and genuinely care  about my well-being. I have freckles, and you really cannot beat that.  No, seriously. They are my favorite trait.
And, with my recent new (read: awful) skill of not being able to sleep in in the mornings, I get to see sunrises every day. It's pretty  uplifting to be able to watch this guy crack in the pink and orange and then yellow.

 I too am on my way to cracking into yellow.