Friday, April 30, 2010

Bus Accidents and ER Visits

I think my boys play the "who can give mommy a bigger heart attack" game. This week they both submitted pretty good entries...

JC went on a field trip on Tuesday. To some nature place. (Does it make me a terrible mother that I can't remember the exact name?) When I picked him up from daycare, I was greeted at the door with "Guess what momma! My bus was in an accident and hit a big truck!"

Um, WHAT?!?

I spent the next 20 minutes trying to piece together what had actually happened based on the rambling of an excited 7 year old who was thrilled to have his mother's rapt attention. Basically, from what I gathered, is that the bus he was on was hit by an 18 wheeler on the way back to the school. They weren't going that fast, and there were no serious injuries (2 kids hit their heads, but were alright). I was incredibly worried though, because earlier in the day I had seen a story about a much more serious bus crash on the news.

Why wasn't I called? You would think in a situation like that, administrators would want to inform the parents themselves instead of letting the story be told by an overzealous 7 year old with a flair for the dramatic. This school district is famous for the recording phone calls to pass on information, so at the very least I would have expected that. But no. Radio silence. Awesome.

2 days later, I did get the recorded message, stating "If you have questions about Tuesday's field trip, please call the principal". Wow, way to be on top of that one.

K woke up on Wednesday not feeling very well, but without a fever or any tangible symptoms, so he headed to school. About 11 A.M. I got the call. You know, the one from the school nurse saying you have 30 minutes to pick up your child. I had a seriously undermanned accounting dept. that day, so I had no choice but to go get him, stop by the house and pick up blankets, pillows, popsicles, movies, and my laptop, and then head back to work with him in tow. He spent the afternoon on the floor by my desk watching movies and eating snacks while I worked. He didn't seem to mind though, since he had lots of company from employees coming in and out. By the time we were headed home, he had fallen asleep, and I thought he was starting to feel better.

I was wrong.

By 7 PM, whatever he had settled into his lungs and he was struggling to breathe. This scared him, so he started crying, which made his lungs tighten up more, which scared him more, which made him cry harder. This cycle continued for a while. After calming him down and giving him a bath to cool the fever, I decided it was time to head to the doctor.

The urgent care center took one look at us and sent us to the ER, where his breathing was continuing to get worse. They took us back immediately and gave him not 1, not 2, but 3 breathing treatments back to back trying to clear his airways. The chest xrays showed that his right lung was a mess, and they started talking admission into the hospital.

Long story short - multiple breathing treatments, a move to the other ER, steroid treatments, more breathing treatments, and lots of tylenol later, they decided we could go home, with instructions to watch him carefully the next couple of days and make sure he has an albuterol inhaler close by. So we made the trek home, at 1 A.M. Everyone was exhausted, but grateful K was okay.

My boys certainly keep life interesting...

Tuesday, April 27, 2010


Somone has been slacking on their 30 Day Shred.

Someone did 23 days straight and then completely fell off the wagon and is now on Day 5 of being Shred-less.

Someone drank over at least a case of beer by herself during "Beer Olympics" this weekend. So. much. fun.

Someone allowed her boys to have popcorn and pepperoni for dinner last night.

Someone took her lunch at the tanning salon so she could have a 20 minute nap.

Someone called the man the phone "an incompetent monkey" when the conversation didn't go the way she wanted it to with the school.

Someone has a bad case of PMS and sleep deprivation, and wants nothing more than chocolate and a dark, cold, quiet room to crash in.

Someone is counting down the days, hours, and minutes until she is on the beach with a cold drink and beautiful views.


Thursday, April 22, 2010

Websites I Adore...

Working 10+ hours a day, I have plenty of time to discover amazing, amusing websites.

Here are a couple of my favorites:

This guy talks in his sleep, and his snoozin' alter ego is HILARIOUS. It includes audio, so you can actually hear it as well. Love it. Updated Daily.

Most people already know about PostSecret, I'm sure. I just like it for the honesty and artwork. It's amazing how many people share the same secrets.

Just check it out. I laugh out loud.

This is the "missed connections" part of Craiglist. It provides hours of amusement reading about people who are trying to hook up with random other people they saw throughout the city. In a place with over 4 million people, I am curious to know what percentage of them come to fruition. I mean, what are the chances of a) having a random encounter, then b) both people going to Craigslist missed connections c) finding each other d) actually realizing they are talking about one another  e) hooking up. Sounds like a fun science experiment to me.

Any favorite sites??? I'm always open to new suggestions...

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Only In Texas...

I was driving home from work yesterday in the parking lot on the highway traffic that Houston is famous for, and was amusing myself by Facebooking on my cell phone. My windows were down, the music was up, and we were trudging along at about 3 miles per hour. Then we stopped. Completely stopped. For about  5 minutes. Maybe 4 minutes into this waiting period, I happened to glance over at the car next to me.

And guess what I saw?

No, really... Guess....

Bet you can't...

I saw....


No kidding. I am NOT making this up. I seriously saw a skeleton in a car. On the highway. In Houston.

This is not an actual photo. But not because I didn't try. I really really did.

The very real looking skeleton was in the passenger seat of a old, beat up car. It was yellowish brown, partially degraded, and it looked incredibly real. The driver didn't look much better. Seriously.

I did my best to discretely get a picture. But the driver was being uncooperative. So then I became a little more bold and was trying to drive with one hand and snap pictures with the other, but the driver didn't like that and kept avoiding me. So, no pictures.

Only in Houston...

The Past 10 Years...

I came across a blog that did a "snapshot" of different parts of the last 10 years of her life and what it looked like. I thought the idea was cute, and I'm totally one to shamelessly copy, so here it is. (Although I usually give credit, I can't remember which blog I got the idea from - so if it was yours, feel free to speak up!)

10 years ago - I was 16 years old. I was a sophomore in high school. I was also in the middle of my cross country trek with truckers. Yep, seriously. At 16 I thought it would be a good idea to run away from home and hitchhike across the United States with random strangers. (Trust me, I know I'm lucky to be alive. I was there, remember?) The reason for this little escapade? Definance, revenge, anger, and love. It's a good story. I'll share it sometime.

9 years ago  - I was 17, and locked up in a juvenille detention facility for delinquent teens. (The result of the running away stunt). My parents decided I was too much to handle and would be better off in a criminal facility. So I was charged with 2 crimes that I didn't commit (because you can't lock someone up simply for running away - go figure) and sent away for 2 years. Hands down the worst 2 years of my life. I saw, learned, and was involved in more than any 17 year old ever should be. Again, maybe someday I'll share.

8 years ago - I was 18 years old, free from the grasps of the law and my parents, a high school senior, and 2 months pregnant. It was a well kept secret ( My parents didn't even find out until I was almost 5 months along - and it would have been longer if they hadn't snooped). I walked the stage as Valedictorian with only a handful of people even aware that I was pregnant. I was terrified, alone, and had no idea what my plan was. The baby's dad and I weren't together, I had a full ride scholarship to Tulane University in New Orleans, and I hadn't a clue what I was going to do.

7 years ago - I was a new mom to a precious baby boy. I was in college, taking care of my son, and had just started dating a really great guy who made me feel like I was his whole world and everything was going to be ok. And he loved my son, so that was huge.

6 years ago - I was 20 years old. A brand new bride. And pregnant again. My husband was deployed and I was learning the ropes of being a military wife while dealing with the nausea of morning sickness. With a 1 year old, and still in school full time, it was pretty miserable. But there was a lot of hope for what the future held for us...

5 years ago - I had a 2 year old and a newborn, and made 3 separate car trips with them out to St. Louis to see their daddy. (My husband was stationed there for predeployment - yes again - training). The fact that we had spent so little of our married life actually together was quickly starting to take a toll  - and eventually broke us - literally and figuratively.

4 years ago - I was in the midst of an insane divorce. The kind where cops are involved, houses get trashed, awful accusations get thrown in all directions, and lawyers love because there is tons of money involved. I was working at a bar at night and going to school during the day, while trying to raise 2 children alone. (Their father wanted nothing to do with them.) I was also involved with someone else (we got together immediately after my husband and I split up - talk about a rebound). It was ridiculously unhealthly all around. But I did work my ass off and graduate with Accounting, Finance, and Business Admin. degrees. Yay me.

3 years ago - I was 23, and still in the above mentioned relationship. Except that it had become insanely abusive, and I put up with it. I had become THAT girl. The one who let a man treat her like that. I loved him so much, I thought that if I would just do enough right, that he would see it and change. I had a stable accounting job, a good income, and 2 precious boys who were getting bigger by the moment. But I was so lost. I didn't know who I was or what I wanted. I was trapped.

2 years ago - I was making plans to escape the relationship I was in. I knew it was time to get out, but I wasn't sure how or when or where. All I knew was that I couldn't keep doing what I was doing. It was bad and was only going to get worse. I ended up packing up and moving to Texas literally overnight - only knowing 1 person in the entire state. It was random. And it was good. Disappearing from my old life was the best thing I've ever done for myself or my boys.

1 year ago - I was living in Houston, just started an amazing new job.  I was head over heels insanely in love with a man I thought I was going to spend my life with. But I was also incredibly broken. My past had left my pretty scarred. And I defended myself the only way I knew how - by staying distant and closed and not letting  him close enough to show him how much I really loved him. It was about this time that I finally started letting those walls come down - but it was too little, too late. And he ended up leaving and never looking back. I got left for the first time in my entire life.

Today-  I'm 26. I'm still a little lost. Still not completely healthy. I still make some bad choices. But I'm ok. I'm stable. I'm grounded. I still don't know where this crazy road called life is going to take me, but I've learned to enjoy the ride, breathe in the fresh air, and hang on tight. I have a 5 year old and a 7 year old who are my entire life. I thank God for their resilency and love. I have everything I need, most of the things I want, and dreams of bigger things to come.

Check back in a year. I'm sure it will be a whole new chapter...

Monday, April 19, 2010

Not Me Monday

"Not Me Monday" is a tribute to all the things that we don't do... Enjoy mine and then catch some more at MckMama's blog.

I did NOT spend over 24 hours of this weekend sleeping. I am a responsible mother and adult and would never waste the precious time I have on Saturdays and Sundays in bed.

I did NOT make waffles for breakfast on Sunday - at NOON. But, they were Texas waffles*, and they came with strawberries and maple syrup, so does that make it better?

I did NOT pretend not to notice that my son's effort at cleaning his room included throwing all his dirty clothes behind his couch because I wasn't in the mood to deal with it. I would never let my son think he got away with breaking the rules just because I was too lazy to "catch" him.

What did you not do today?

*Side note - have you EVER seen a state with more pride than Texas? I mean, maybe it's just me, but I've never seen a Colorado waffle maker. However, you can buy a Texas shaped waffle maker on pretty much every corner. Gotta love it.

I Failed the 12 Steps...

Many of you are not aware that I joined a 12 step program a few months ago. No, I'm not an alcoholic or a drug addict. Never have been. This 12 step program is slightly different. It is for any "Hurt, Habit, or Hangup" that is hindering a person from living a fully happy and successful life. It's a Christ based 12 step group for a wide variety of issues.

It's no secret that I've been through some serious stuff. It shouldn't be a surprise that a lot of it has really shaped who I am today and affected me. And some of it, I haven't been able to let go. I've tried to let the past be the past, but it just keeps sneaking up on me when I least expect it, and not allowing me to be the person I want to be. So, I thought that this 12 step program would/could/should be helpful. I thought it would help me comes to terms with the past and be done with it. So, I went. Every Thursday night.

The first time I started this endeavor, almost a year ago, I made it to Step 4. Once I hit Step 4, I shied away from the idea of writing down everything bad thing that had ever happened to me and every person I had ever hurt. For one, I didn't want to relive all that crap. For two, the writing down every person I ever hurt thing reminded me a lot of the Victim Impact Statements I had to write when I was locked up in juvi. No bueno. Bad memories. So I quit. Shame on me.

Life continued. Things happened. Crap I thought I was past started to pop up again. So I decided to try again. This time with a renewed committment and sincere hope that I would make it through and somehow be relieved of all this yucky stuff that was dragging me down.

Well, I quit again. Not because I am avoiding Step 4. Not because I don't think I should do it. Not because it wouldn't be incredibly helpful for me to continue.

I quit because I disagree with the basic premise of the group I was involved in.

With this group, it was totally ALL or NOTHING. There was no gray area. No room for missteps. No option for error.

Basically, in order to continue in the group - the following had to happen:

1. I would have to give up alcohol completely. No drinking. None. Period.
2. No relationships. No sex. No dating.
3. No making "big" decisions for the next 6 months. Regarding a job, a new vehicle, a move, anything.
4. In accordance with #1 - no partying. No going out. No "negative" friends.
5. Be willing to spill my entire, albeit incredibly screwed up life, with a group of people I hardly know and have very little in common with.
6. Be "selfish" i.e focus solely on myself for the next 6 months.

Eh. I don't think so.

1. I'm not an alcoholic. I could see this being necessary if I was. But I'm not. Therefore, this seems unwarranted. And legalistic. Like what? The powers that be won't allow me change should I have a beer with friends after work or go out with friends on a Friday night?

2. Again - I'm not a fan of having my decision making capabilites taken away. I would like to think that I'm a mature and responsible adult who can decide whether a person or a relationship is a healthy thing for me. I understand that the group is for people who are screwed up, which I fully admit that I am, but I don't think banning me from men is the way to fix that.

3. Yep, not gonna happen. I'm going to school in June. Which requires HUGE decisions regarding where. Along with a move to Austin. This is necessary to further my life and wellbeing. Sorry. Can't put that on hold for 6 months while I hang out in group therapy.

4. Same issues as 1 and 2. And the fact that according to their criteria, every friend I have in Houston is a "negative" friend. It just seems a bit lot narrowminded for my tastes. Granted, my friends and I don't agree on everything. We often differ on subjects of serious importance, including politics, religion, and child rearing. Some choose to live lifestyles that I wouldn't. I'm sure I do things they wouldn't. But I don't think that qualifies them as "negative". My friendship tests includes whether or not they support me, are there for me when I need it, and can try to understand and respect my feelings and opinions even if they disagree. Them dragging me to church once a week and telling me they will pray for me doesn't cut it. I need friends who are authentic and true to themselves, because they help me to be the same. And isn't that the point of the 12 steps anyway?

5. Again, yea right. I'm a fairly open person, but even I have some subjects that are strictly off limits. Unless I bring it up, you don't. Period. I realize there are things that need to be talked about and worked through, but I think 1 on 1 is a much better way to do that than with a group of semi-strangers, regardless of how understanding they may seem. Because regardless of confidentiality clauses in these groups, women are still women, and women like to gossip. No thanks.

6. I'm a single mom raising 2 boys and working 50 hours a week. Enough said.

So... I failed the 12 steps. I couldn't "hack it". At least not in that format.

But I'm not totally quitting. I'm going to continue to go through the steps by myself. In my own time, and my own way. They say in the group that doing it my way won't provide the healing I need, but I disagree.

I'm pretty sure that God can meet a person wherever they are. If he can't, then he doesn't get to call himself the Almighty God. I don't have to go to meet with a group of individuals once a week and adhere to a strict set of rules to get healing and closure. That's one way to do it, sure. But it's not the only way. And I'm not there. And I certainly don't want to pretend that I am, because then I'm just cheating myself. Because let's face it - He already knows.

So I'm going to try it another way. I'm going to see what it takes to let of the past and move towards the future. And I'm going to do it without a set of legalistic notions that I don't agree with.

So maybe for now, "failing" the 12 Steps isn't such a bad thing. Maybe it leads to awesome success in the bigger picture. We shall see...

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Decisions, Decisions...

So GUESS WHAT?!?! I have been ACCEPTED to the University of Texas Austin.

This is a total reversal of the earlier decision that I wrote about here.

Basically, I talked to the school. I gave a little. They gave a little. And we worked something out.

I'm not going to lie - UT has been my dream for a VERY long time. I want this badly.

So now, it's time to work out the logistics. If I'm really going to go. What I'm going to do about housing, and school for the boys, and daycare, and paying for bills, and having the money to afford everything.

This road is far from over, but I am incredibly excited about the possibilities.

More details to come... but I had to share my AWESOME news!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010


"You're BORING!"

That hit me like a ton of bricks. I have never been called boring in my life.

Granted, I've been called a lot of names throughout the various stages of my maturity.

Crazy. Insane. Carefree. Wild. Bipolar even. But never boring.

Until today. When my 5 year old called me boring.

I've been contemplating this for the last couple of hours. Mostly because I am terrified of being that mom. That person. That woman.

And I've come to the following conclusion -

It is good that my son thinks I'm boring.

I'm not, though. I ride a motorcycle. I drive fast cars. I own a gun. I skydive. I white water raft. I party. I parasail. I mud race. I actively seek out adeventure and excitment. I live a wild and crazy life and I love every moment of it. Nothing about the way I do things even remotelly falls under the label "boring".

However - the fact that my son believes I'm boring means I'm doing something right. It means that I am creating stability and an environment of trust and security. It means that I am predictable. It means that my kids know what to expect  from me. And that is good. That is the signature of a good parent.

I can be wild and crazy. I can dance on bars and earn Mardi Gras beads in New Orleans. I can run around on a motorcycle and outshoot guys at the shooting range. I can be that person, and still be a mom.

My kids don't need to know those things. They don't need to see it. They need me to be boring. I can do that for them.

So, when I think about it, my son gave me a compliment today. Because "boring" means that I'm giving him the stable, healthy life that he needs.

But if I hear it from anyone else, I'll totally freak!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Easter Weekend

I'm too tired for words... Forgive me Jillian Michaels for ditching you today. I just can't do it. But I promise I'll make it up tomorrow by doing Level 2. K?

For now - here are some pictures of this weekend... Enjoy...

Hanging out on the train at the park

JC enjoying the water park

About to do something he shouldn't...

What a way to spend an April Day in Houston!

Getting ready to decorate eggs

JC coloring the egg before dying it

The Boys

Our pretty creations

Easter Breakfast... SOOOO yummy

All dressed up for church

Easter Dinner - post nap!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Not Me Monday...

For all the things we "didn't" do, MckMama created Not Me Mondays! Enjoy mine, then jump over to her blog for more.

I did NOT take last Friday off for my sanity. I am much more dilligent and responsible than that, and I would never allow my paycheck to shrink for the sake of a day without having to deal with an insane overzealous boss.

I did NOT allow my children to run through the water park fully clothed and without sunscreen over the weekend.
I am a responsible parent who always remembers the essentials like swimsuits and SPF 50 protection.

I did NOT get up super early on Sunday for Easter traditions and church, and then proceed to take a nap before cooking Easter dinner.

I would never miss out on the opportunity to spend quality time with family during the holidays to take advantage of a chance to sleep.

Finally, I did NOT beg my 5 year old to stop playing with his loose tooth because the very idea of teeth falling out makes me nauseous. I did NOT have a terrible experience with losing teeth as a child, and now shudder everything time my child opens his mouth and says "hey Mom, LOOK". Yuck!

What did you NOT do this week?

Thursday, April 1, 2010

What Can I Say...

Big Trucks Totally Turn Me On...

What does it for you?