Wednesday, March 15, 2017

That Time I Met Jenny Lawson - The Bloggess

Granted, it was a whooping 10 seconds at a book signing, but that is besides the point. And she is just fabulous! The whole time we were in line, I kept telling myself to play it cool, don't be a freak and gush how much you admire her bravery, her honesty, and just how freaking crazy she is or how her writing really help shine a light in a dark place to say hey, you're not alone. That and her dark place makes mine look like a picnic on a slightly cloudy day.

Perspective is an amazing thing.

She even talked about that before she faced the masses to sign books. I sort of feel slightly guilty after reading her books that I feel way better about myself, but what's really cool about her is that she knows that and gives you permission to feel better that you aren't as messed up as her.

When it was my turn to have her sign her new book/coloring book, I wasn't a gushing dork, but I'm pretty sure my brain thought this was supposed to be a mannequin challenge and froze. No trying to connect, no saying something funny, zilch, nadda, nothing. I finally managed to squeak out I love her writing just as she finished signing the book and she genuinely thanked me. Either that or she is a world class actresses and has missed her calling in life. If you read her blog, you know that is not the case. Especially since she said she was having a panic attack before she came out on stage and took the wrong meds and was waiting for the vodka to kick in.

I'm glad we left early. It was a 2 hour drive down to Louisville, and because Mother Nature is off her meds, it was blowing snow. Didn't bother me a bit being from Michigan. I was lamenting that I feel bad that my kids don't know how to handle weather like that because any snow we get lasts for about 3 hours and then the sun comes out and melts it all away. I think we had some snow on the ground for a whole 2 weeks beginning of the year. I could still see grass poking through, so technically that doesn't count. Just a dusting.

We made good time due to I was talking and wasn't paying attention to how fast I was going. We actually got a pretty good parking spot, but it was parallel parking. I called it close enough and left it at that. I didn't tag the curb probably because I wasn't even close to it. I'm pretty sure the guys can parallel park better than I can. But it's not like my TrailBlazer, aka The Beast, turns on a dime.

Totally enjoyed the evening. We were in the second round of signing because someone was smart and color coded people so there wasn't a mass rush to the table. As I floated over to my friends that were waiting for me, I did give myself a pat on the back. While I wasn't my normal witty self, I can say I didn't make an @$$ of myself either. And some days that is a true challenge. Goodness knows I have a track record of opening mouth, shoving foot in up pass the knee-cap in a record of 4 seconds.

Thankfully, that was not the day.

I will give caution if you grab her books. It is for mature audiences and my inner 12 year old. Both of her books have left me crying with laughter, gasping for air. The guys kept asking what was so funny and all I could say several times over was "I can't repeat it." I did read one tiny section to get them off my case and they looked at me confused as to why I thought that was so funny. My inner 12 year old squeals with glee at her books. I am aware that 12 year old needs therapy, but who really has time for that?

This did bring up a discussion later about having apposing views of life. There are times in certain circles my opinion about things is completely in the minority. I've learned to just keep quiet and let people have their own opinions. Now if my opinion is asked - I will give it, and make no apologies for it. But I'm so over everyone telling everyone how they should be, should think, should (fill in the blank). Heard this just last night - "stop shoulding on people, stop shoulding on yourself." ~Melissa Ramos

Words to live by.

Monday, February 27, 2017

I Will Make You Fishers Of Men....

And Desserts Will Be The Bait

I'm pretty sure that last part was supposed to be added. At least in the Message bible, because I've caught quite a few people.

Over the years with church gatherings, family reunions, and hanging out with a group, you tend to gather tried and true recipes. Anything from stuff to make in a pinch, or you're trying to impress the socks off of everyone in the room. I honestly never set out to impress anyone, but for some odd reason it happens from time to time. I tend to read recipes like a science experiment which range from yeah, I can do that, to that is never going to happen - like ever.

Something I've noticed lately is no one seems to cook much anymore. Probably because everyone is flat out tired! When I was working, there was no way in the world I was going to spend my day off hanging out in the kitchen all day long only to watch something get wolfed down in seconds and then spend the rest of the evening cleaning up the mess it took to make awesomeness. So now I can really appreciate homemade stuff and the effort behind it like I never had before. I look at it differently and I've tried to put in a little extra effort.

But serious on the little part because I tend to bite off more than I can chew. Ha!

I don't want to say I've created a monster but um, the thing is starting to grow teeth. Our church has life groups, limited amount of people get together 3 times a month and do a bible study and just hang out and do life. Love it! With the whole fam in one group and the older guys in another group, food being involved and me tending to over do everything....well....I now have a following.

I feel kinda bad for the 20 somethings group. Broke and clueless - or at least that was what I was at that age. Our group is really large so you need extra food. I bring a side and a dessert and I never have anything left to bring home. Lately I've been doubling the desserts so the guys have stuff to take to their group. Thought I would try to make it easier on myself. I'm thinking that was totally stupid and should go back to making the guys do their own stuff instead of pulling this AAHH! Life is crazy, I can't do all this stuff! Mom! Help!!

That gets me every.single.time.

The last round bit me in the butt. It was some raspberry white chocolate cheesecake bites made in little mini muffin tins. It was a bit more involved than what I thought and since I doubled it - it took a while. Last week at church we were sitting around waiting on M to pack up his gear when all of the sudden a few people were talking with N and I hear "and THIS is my mom." "Oh the one who made....?" "Yup."

And I'm surrounded. One guy joked if we ever have an extra room open up he would be willing to move in and pay rent. I told him I'm crazy and he said his mom was crazy and can't cook, so he could handle it for the food's sake. That made me laugh.

So very grateful for Pinterest. I spent a whole Saturday doing laundry and surfing for some recipes. M was saying the happiest moment is knowing I'm on Pinterest and hearing the printer going. He pats his stomach and says, "Hear that? Goodness is on the way." That still makes me laugh no matter how many times he does that. I think we might have issues. Back in the day you had to collect cookbooks and usually you only got a small handful of good ones out of a whole huge book. I've noticed that bars are the best to take to potlucks. It seems to keep it even. I've seen a few greedy gulpers scoop out the majority of something leaving not much for others and then bragged about it afterwords about who didn't get any of aunt so and so's pie or what have you.

Speaking back in the day, I've noticed that recipes were once a guarded secret. I'm quick to print off a recipe and fork it over to the shock of some people. I tell them my grandma took a couple recipes to her grave and I can't tell you how much that annoys me. You ever eaten something and it teleports you back in time to that memory? Yeah.

Maybe that's why I go overboard or try out something new. Just another way of making some happy memories.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

That Was Awkward

How is it possible I let so many weeks, nay months go flying right by my head without a blog post? Real stinking easy. I get that we are all busy, but I don't think I've had a season in my life that has been such a blur. I'm juggling everyone's schedule that I have no control over any of it. Before I had plotted and planned and was able to shift things. Now? I need at least 2 weeks notice to do anything with anyone or it's not going to happen.

I have to laugh at myself because I'm noticing things that I was letting myself get stressed over has a way of sorting itself out. Example: that whole pharmacy week thing I was freaking out over? Turns out dude had that slated as a vacation week and I was off the hook. Well, sort of. We HAD to get our back deck painted. There was a lot of exposed wood and with winter pretending to be here, we knew it needed treated before snow was supposed to fly.

I say supposed to fly because we had snow for like 3 days. It warmed up and now all we've had was rain. It's been in the 50s and 60s, which is odd because a few weeks ago it was single digits. The weather is crazier than I am and I'm not sure how I feel about that. We did have a nasty ice storm beginning of December. And it was on a night that Fred's car died while he was getting on the highway on a left side entrance. Read that as no where to park. It took me almost 2 hours to get to him. Dude was freezing as scrubs have nothing to them. The whole thing was a mess. Couldn't get a tow truck as there were close to 500 wrecks. By the time we finally got a tow truck lined up the next day, the state police got to his car before we could. Took a few more days to locate the car. Was seriously overpriced on towing fees, went with a different company to tow it to the garage to get it fixed. This was a week after we had to get a new water heater, so our Christmas was a real ba hambug! But pulled through it as we always do and life chugs on.

The happy note in all of that was back in the fall we did Dave Ramsey's financial peace program. This last round wiped out the emergency funds, but it was covered. The bonus is I made the guys do the program right with us and they have been saving up their money. Shortly after their 21st b-day (how is that possible I ask you?) they both bought used cars in cash. No debt and it took a huge strain off of us. Which is good because Nicholas has been doing all opening shifts and I would have had to take him. So happy dance on my end! Except now we're working on Jared's driving hours, so it was a short lived dance.

Imma say it a thousand times over: teaching someone to drive is not for the faint of heart!

The snag is now our parking situation is beyond redonkulous. We have 5 cars and a small driveway. Right now it's working simply because Jared's car really isn't in play. Once he has his license and his own schedule is when the poo will hit the fan. I just graded his last semester stuff because I have finally learned that waiting until the end of the year causes me to cry, cuss, and try to sell everything on eBay in total surrender that I totally suck at all this homeschooling stuff. Which is hilarious when you consider next year is the last one. Glory!

Although, I'm finding a lot of identity crisis has been popping up in my head lately. I have taken a ton of crap from relatives for making my kids my career. I came close to caring once. Not true, I have to work hard not to let their words and opinions weigh me down, which is easier said than done. The last round of holidays left a few comments about once J is done I'll have no more excuses and will need to get off my large butt and get a real job. How I managed not to spew forth sarcastic comments still amazes me.

I guess Jesus really is working in my life.

I feel like that thought had been sort of rolling around in my head, but I never stopped long enough to voice it and certainly not so cold. So to hear it said like that was unexpected and unwelcomed. Especially now that it went from a vague feeling to a loud shouting voice. And this is why I try to avoid family reunions.

I'm glad at one of the library book sales I picked up the book Soul Detox. I'm only a few chapters in and I'm like, well snap! Lot of toxic thinking going on up in here. Then a church sermon, a blog post, even a podcast all talking about being more mindful. Way to start of the new year with a kick in the noggin! But I do find it frustrating that I know this stuff, but seem to fall short of putting it into practice on a regular basis. I tried that whole Jesus take the wheel approach and He was like nice try.

So here is to a new year of being more present, more mindful, and with a ton more gratitude than what I have been in the past. The sarcastic part just seems to be there no matter how hard I try to curb it, so not much promise in changing that part. Besides, I think it would cause me physical pain if I tried to stop now. I'm not going to risk it.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Why Did I Even Think This Would Be A Good Idea?

I just had an entire list of things that went through my head that fits all in that category. Now I'm kinda of nervous because that wasn't supposed to happen. My list of things to do just took a dark turn and now I want to run away from the beast and go hide under a blanket.

Sadly, life just isn't going to let that happen.

Even sadder still, I'm not sure if I've blogged this before or if I just thought about a blog post but never got around to actually posting it.

Welcome to my brain! Things may, or may not, make sense at any given....SHINY!

Where was I? Oh yeah. So Hubby dear saved me from my stupidity once again. We have a game plan for pharmacy week that is in October. Please read that carefully - OCTOBER! Pecan Pumpkin Loaves galore. Only to have same dear Hubby tell me that it was employee appreciation week and suggested we do it immediately. As in that day.

Once I stopped laughing so hard I realized he was serious. That's when I told him not happening. I then felt bad as I was the idiot that came up with all these suggestions of what we, meaning me, could do. I offered to do a couple batches of cashew bars instead and we were back in business. Until George decided to weigh in on this decision rendering me in a not great mood. It didn't help said bad mood when I discovered that dude oopsidentally put the corn syrup in his briefcase along with a couple other SoBe bottles. He said it was 5:30 in the morning and had just worked a double, so all bottles look alike at that time in the morning.

I'm amazed he can even focus!

But I only had enough to do 1 batch until he got home, which left me staying up late to get it done as momma taxi was once again on the road as 1 guy had worship practice, 1 kid had youth group, and the other 1 had the car so I can't pawn it off on someone else to take them. I need a nap. And another vehicle, Lord - please and thank you!

While that was baking up, I was trolling scrolling through Facebook when I noticed my MIL had posted this really cute sunflower wreath how-to on her wall telling a friend it was better material to work with. I did a 4th of July bandanna wreath that turned out cute so I decided to give this a try. And happy day! I got a 25% off coupon from Jo-Ann's. Except it expires tomorrow which means I need to go today because I think I have something else going on tomorrow. So all that happened last week. Fast forward a few days because it took me a few days to survive the carnage. I'm still finding this gold mesh stuff all over the place.

If you feel you have nothing better to do for the next hour or so, go on Pinterest and do a sunflower wreath search and then sit back and watch a few youtube how-tos. I would like to say that they really don't let you know just how behemothly huge this sucker turns out to be. I'm talking it was bigger than the freaking door it was supposed to hang on huge. Needless to say, I took it apart and tried again. I would like to add that my cheap butt did NOT buy the 2 rolls it suggested because it was 15 bucks a roll and the wreath looked a tad bit bald as I spaced out it out on the different ring.

When my eyes landed on that price tag, it was that moment when my mother's head popped up and started telling me that when you do something, you do it nice and the best of your ability. And that's when I said yeah, "but I don't have that much ability OR your talent and reckless spending tendencies so 1 and done," then tossed it in the buggy and kept moving.

I had to keep moving because I said that last part out loud, as I tend to do, and I think I scared a lady.

I should point out that MIL was not joking about material being a bit hard to work with and whathaveyou because GAH! I didn't do the burlap mesh because I couldn't find it and if memory serves me right, it's more pricey. I skipped getting the bag of fuzzy twist ties because I had other things to buy and I thought I was going to be able to tie it like I did the bandanna wreath.

That's a big no there, Captain!

This stuff was not going to be tied off like fabric. In a panic, I sprang to the trusty everything goes draw, but not to be confused with a junk draw. This draw has all my bread twist-ties that I tend to save because I have reasons and possibly some issues. But I can hold those stupid issues together nicely because twist-ties! But I wasn't going to use up my stash on a flipping wreath. Somehow we had some flimsy twist-ties that I'm pretty sure would not pass any twist-tie inspection if there were such a thing; and I can't remember how long they have been sitting there. I looked upon them, and they up at me with a deep desire that had been long denied. Today was their day. Their day of glory! The stuff twist-ties can only dream of! I knew in my heart that I'm not that great at crafts. It was in this moment of craft weakness that I embraced my married into redneck genes that gets encrusted on you when your love slips on that ring and grabbed those sad looking twist-ties and got my craftiness on.

I ended up having to put all of it on 1 ring instead of spreading it all out because 1 roll thankyouverymuch. But it covered up the hickerbilly ties. However, when it came time to do the center part of sunflower - fill in any type of doom and gloom music you can muster. It wasn't working. That hickerbillyness stepped up to the plate and said hold my tea, which is girl speak for hold my beer, I got this Cletus! I ended up taking a Walmart bag stuffed with other Walmart bags to make it a poof. I then tied the poof the wreath. I cut out some brown felt, hot glued in on the poof and then hot glued some little pine cones on the brown felt. It turned out cute but the underside of this thing screams ghetto. I kid you not.

My mom was commenting on how nice it looks until I flipped it over to show the underbelly of ugly hoping she would be proud of my hickerbilly ingenuity. She busted out laughing so bad I'm pretty sure she peed herself a little bit. Once she could properly breath again, she asked why in heavens name didn't I cover it up better. When I asked what did she mean, she hung the wreath back up, closed the door, and pointed out that you could see the ghetto through the glass part of our door.

So much for my hickerbilly ingenuity. But it is cute. Thankfully, it flattened out a little bit when I closed the door, but it's still super poofy.



I finally figured out how to a picture. And I'm pretty sure spellcheck hates me right now because it is screaming at me that most of these words aren't real. I beg to differ spellcheck, and clearly you need to get out more.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Brilliant And Not So Brilliant

I almost titled this as Doing Backstrokes in the Barf Bucket of Life, but I still feel a bit green to be joking around. August has been a crazy month. I'm glad to see it end because sheesh!

There were moments of brilliance, like we cleaned up our old frig and plugged it in to see if it still works and yes it does. Then we discovered that we actually need the second frig and freezer. I now feel like this needs to be a service announcement to all. If you have more than 2 kids, have an extra frig in the garage. Especially if 1 of your kids happens to be part fish and uses a lot of water bottles. Actually, the 2 that work are going through them like crazy but I totally get it.

A not so brilliant moment was we got the cabinets all done, (which Rust-Oleum totally lied about it being a weekend project but whatever) only to discover the hinges we ordered were not right and we couldn't make it work. We went to every home improvement store you can name and struck out. Had to ship those back and order different hinges. Finally got them all installed and we are happy with how it looks. Except now we really hate the counter tops and I'm trying really hard not to stare at the walls.

It is only a matter of time before I crack and start painting.

We got to go see the Ark Encounter and really enjoyed it. As the same with the Creation Museum - lot of reading. They post world view and biblical view side by side and I found it refreshing. Could not get over how huge it was. I always pictured Noah and fam all crammed in there together having to eat with a bird on their shoulders and monkey on the head. Far from it. We really enjoyed it.

Although, I highly recommend not getting food poisoning the day before your trip. That one was my own stupid fault. I'm just going to chalk that up to not being of right mind or slightly distracted or some combination of both. But Fred's brilliant moment was to bring along an old ice cream bucket - with lid - and it turned out to be a life saver while on the highway with no way to pull over. Guys were a good sport as I shoved my head in the bucket and let loose my 5 crackers and half a can of 7up.

Good times.

It's not like I was back to being a hundred percent as it was but that certainly knocked me for a loop. I think I had to sit down at every bench along the way as the crowds made me a bit green. But we made it through and it was really cool. We passed on the petting zoo because we don't care and that is a perk with everyone being in the adult range. When we came out of the ark it was pouring buckets of rain and everyone joked about going back in the ark. Thankfully, we get shuttled to the parking lot because I don't think I would have made it. Scratch that I KNOW I wouldn't have made it.

In between the ER visit and this trip, we've had vehicle issues with each car and it just needs to stop. I had another cyst episode and I've found ice packs work better than a heating pad. I've heard Castor oil packs are known to dissolve cyst. If life could slow down for a bit I want to try it.

Had a lot of juggling everyone around last couple weeks. With having different vehicles in the shop at different times that left me filling in all the gaps. Lots and lots of gaps. Like taking Fred into work so I could take Nicholas to work because Michael wouldn't be back in time, and that was the day Fred was working a double, so I got to go back at 11 p.m. to get him after being up at 5 a.m.

He's not normal.

Jared starting up school this week and so far it's looking like this isn't going to be brain crunch I thought it was going to be. Huge shout out to Michael for helping figure out a chemistry equation because I was less than zero help. Dude is also on the worship team at church while Nicholas is running the sound board and the schedule conflicts have been fun. I think I was at church 4 times last week for various reasons. And just a little over a week ago all 3 guys got baptized. Super happy for them.

I wasn't sure if that was going to happen or not. Our lovely track record of crappy churches has often left the guys feeling that most people's profession of faith is pretty much full of hot air. Toss in the youth groups that treated them like little kids with glorified babysitting instead of equipping them for adulthood hadn't helped at all. Disaster is a better description. We almost had to bribe Jared to give this one a chance. So we were super happy when the guys started talking about getting baptized, and that they felt that this church actually has believers instead of players. I did force the older 2 into a young adult group as well as join our bible study group. It's been more juggling around for me, but I know they need it. Plus, I know this is just a season and before I know it, they will be flying the coup.

My folks have some great connections and got a deal on some meat. Mom just called and looks like the cow is going to be ready this week and the pig will be done in a few more weeks. I'll be scrambling back and forth to help them out. I thought they were bringing it down, but change of plans and we roll with it. Fred's car needs to go back in the shop for the next fix, so I'm not sure how this is all going to go down.

Never a dull moment.

Friday, August 5, 2016

2 Funerals, 2 Projects, And A Trip To The ER,

I'm trying to catch up with life that decided to sprint ahead. It's like it totally forgot I don't sprint. Or run. I was mom taxi for a few days while we got the guys' car taken care of because it decided it needed a new fuel pump. At least the guys' paid for it, and extra bonus the key getting stuck is now no longer a problem. This means the only time my taxi services are needed is when Nicholas has an opening shift. Like tomorrow.

But we made it through Grandma's funeral. We opted not to go over to Grandma's house as everyone picked through her stuff like a bunch of vultures. I get it, I really do, but it's so hard to see how final death is and how little regard some people have for someone's stuff. My mom was really upset by the whole thing and if she was upset, I'm super glad I wasn't there.

She feels like I didn't get anything, I disagree. Grandma got me started cross-stitching, and I just used that skill to make some Star Wars baby bibs for one of Fred's co-workers that made her day. Stuff like that - that's what I hang onto. I'm okay without her stuff. Besides there were a few cousins that were ready to go to blows over things. Not worth it.

Then the weekend after that, another one of Fred's co-workers died of cancer. That was a much harder funeral to go to. I didn't know her at all but she was only in her early 30s. I got to meet some more of Fred's co-workers. Nice to put some names to faces.

I did the cross-stitch project right smack dab in the middle of stripping all the paint off the cabinets because I'm not very bright at times. Scraping paint by day and collapsed on the couch stitching by night.

Such a glamorous life I live.

I am so thankful for Pinterest because I pretty much winged it on the bibs and they turned out cute. I had to make a card, so I blew the dust off of my scrapbook stuff and actually made a a bb8 out of a lot of circle punches. I'm not sure if I should be proud of that or just go sit in the nerd corner. I was told she was so happy she almost peed herself. That's certainly a new one for me.

I am going to leave off I had to have reading glasses over my regular glasses because I couldn't see the squares very well. I'll just say I was super exhausted and see if you buy that excuse. Ahem!

The cabinets - that paint was hiding a whole lot of ugly. Got all the tan stuff off easy-peasy. Underneath all that was navy blue for the base and burgundy for the doors. That navy didn't want to come off. But we used this Citrus Strip stuff and it was awesome. I'm not paid to say that, the stuff works wonders. The sides of these cabinets underneath the paint was just a wood sticker, so we're adding wood on the sides. The wood is pretty beat up, so looks like we're going to have to do a Rust-oleum kit where you paint the cabinets, glaze it to bring out the wood grain, and then seal it.


I'm both looking forward to this project and dreading it.

I'm still pretty weak because earlier this week I ended up in the ER with a ruptured cyst. Just another joy of having PCOS - the cysts can explode. Who knew? And, of course, all this had to happen during a crazy busy week. The pain was unbearable, and I threw up everything I thought about eating...for the next month. Needless to say, a trip to the ER was going to happen. Thankfully, I know a guy who works at a hospital and we were hustled in real quick and taken care of. I had no bleeding so no surgery was needed, because I seriously do not have time for surgery. Nor do I want to pay for that especially since we got a whooper of a bill to fix my Blazer.

It has been an interesting week to say the least.

The funny part was after several tests, the Dr. said well you're not pregnant and Fred and I gave each other a high-five. He wasn't expecting that reaction. I truly hope Fred doesn't have to see that Dr. again especially since I had to have a pelvic exam. Can you imagine that Christmas party? Hey, how's your wife? Talk about a roomy hoo-hah.

At this point in the blog, I would like to blame all the medicines they have me on, but I think we all know I'm like this all the time.

I feel kind of bad. All this time I've been giving George the angry uterus the bum rap, but it might be Lulu the weepy ovary that has caused George to be so angry. I'm not sure. At one point they thought the ovary was twisting and untwisting. It's a good thing they already gave me the anti-nausea meds, because I was ready to blow more chunks at that point. I got the whole go on birth control pills as that will slow down the growth of the cyst. Not stop them, slow them. So exploding cyst are par for the course. They don't believe me when I say that I make Cruella DeVil look like Mary Poppins when I'm on bc.

The good news is this isn't life threatening unless there is internal bleeding. The bad news is it hurts worse than childbirth. I was given serious kudos for not passing out. Go me. Way to be super tough. The reality is I would have liked to pass out but I was too busy throwing up at the time.

I don't feel very tough. I'm wiped out. I almost needed a chair yesterday when I was cooking dinner. I think I might be able to just chill all next week which is good because after that should be when we're tackling the cabinet project. Oh happy day.

Friday, June 24, 2016

When Your Life Just Strapped On Running Shoes

All you can do is hold on and go with it. I'm pretty sure I blinked and a whole month went by. I just looked at the calendar where my eyes focused in on the date and not just to see what time so and so has to be where on which day. I thought for sure my eyes were playing tricks on me. And when I took a gander at the month, I felt a bit lightheaded.

I'm sitting here waiting to get a phone call from my folks to inform me that my grandma has passed. She had a stroke Saturday and by Monday she was in a coma. She's 95 and hasn't been doing all that great for months so it is really weird to sit here and just wait. All the texts between aunts and cousins you would think she's already been gone for a few days. Lot of stuff to go through. I'm relieved for my folks who have waited on this stubborn woman like crazy for the last 3 years. It's hard to watch them go through all that and I can't help but think of the future and wonder. Then I have to think of something else, because I just can't go there.

On top of that, I'm behind on a few things and I do find that kind of depressing. J was done with school back in April and I haven't finished grading his math. I can think of about 302 things I would rather do. Shockingly, I seem to have that exact same number of things that need my immediate attention.

May rolled in with J turning 17, M getting employee of the month, (Take that evil manager from the underworld!) and N getting a job at Sam's Club. The guys' car is having some crazy issues. Like it won't release the key once in park. M has a few tricks up his sleeve to get the thing to click and then it'll release. N seems to have all the patience of a gnat and doesn't want to mess around with it. Read all that to Mom will you take me? It's only 6 minutes away, I think I can handle it. Until someone forgot to watch the clock and kept on working and I sat out in the hot sun for over an hour with the sun shining in my face.

I thought about letting him walk home.

Fred's job has pretty much turned into bailing water in a sinking ship at the moment. I think I heard the terms trial by fire been used more than once. He knew going in there were a lot of problems that need to be dealt with but right now they've have 1 person quit, 2 retire, and another moving in another month. Leaves the schedule in shambles and that leaves Mr. Robot to fill in all those gaps. He said I might not see him for the month of July and possibly August. We're like two ships that pass each other and briefly say hi as we charge on to the next port. Our text messages have been entertaining. A couple that can joke together will keep their sense of humor in the midst of sheer chaos.

Chaos - thy name is schedule.

In the midst of all the crazy, we finally found a church back in March. Hallelujah and amen! Because I was pretty much resigned to the fact that it wasn't going to happen. Like ever. How we found it was pretty weird and long story short - it's a God thing. Stuff is brewing on that front. Right now I'm trying to dodge getting asked to help with VBS. Bolting out the door as soon as pastor says amen has been working quite well so far. I do have an excuse as both Nicholas and Fred have to be at work in the afternoon, so there is no time for dilly-dallying.

Trying to balance everyone's work schedule, church stuff, a handful of some other stuff, and I thought I was about ready to tackle another home improvement project. The kitchen cabinets have at least 3 coats of different colors of paint. I can tell as it's all starting to chip around the handles. The walls are a shade of tan I'm not liking and the cabinets were painted almost the same shade. It's just blah. After being very happy with how the bathroom turned out, my eyes can't stop looking at the cabinets pretty much the same way you look at chipped finger nails. The loathing starts to build until you push past the feelings of don't want to and just get it done. I need to get them all stripped down to bare word and then we can see what we have to work with if Fred is still allowed his vacation time. I'm hoping I can tackle one section at a time so I don't get overwhelmed with everything, because I'm sort of surprised at how easy that is to achieve. Because once I get overwhelmed I want to go hide in my blanket fort and pretend I don't exist.

It doesn't work very well. Especially the closer it gets to dinner time.

But right now everything is on hold to see what's going on with grandma. Honestly, I'm amazed she's lasted this long. The rate everything is going, it might just be me and Jared that goes to the funeral. My folks would be livid. Depending on the day all but Nicholas can do it. The thing that gets me is everyone was all over me for the guys to get jobs. Okay - check. Now I got people all pissed off because the guys are - wait for it - working all the time and don't have time for things.

People. Gotta love them.....from a distance. As I run in a different direction.