Monday, December 31, 2007

Happy 2008!

A new year, another chance for things to go fabulously right, horribly wrong, or somewhere in between.

In 2004 and 2005, I was waiting for my marriage to officially be over. In 2006, Brian and I were just starting to figure out that maybe there was something really good going on with us. Now it's the end of 2007, the start of 2008. Still no job for Brian here, but hopefully that will change soon. No wedding ring on my finger as of yet, although I did get my promise ring for my birthday. But we're in it for the long term, and I believe things will work out.

Good things in 2007:

~I got to move to a new job role at work, so my job no longer sucks big dirty rocks and no longer makes me want to cry or throw up when I get there.
~J started kindergarten.
~My promise ring, and what it stands for.
~Bright Blessings is at least up and running, if not taking the world by storm.
~I no longer cry (well, not much) when I pay bills.
~No credit cards means no huge after-Christmas debt to pay off!
~My dad came to my house for the first time in five years, and it was a good visit.
~I think we've found a church home we can really fit into, and where we can really find a community of faith to be a part of.

Not so good things in 2007:

~My new job role is a huge improvement over my old one, but it's kind of boring sometimes, and still not something I see me doing for the duration of my career. But hey, it's better than it was.
~I learned that my dad has Parkinson's.
~Finances still aren't as stable as I'd like them to be.

Two things I'd like to keep in mind as a new year begins:

Once I had it all planned out
My dirty fingers moved about
To make a mess of everything around me
I don't claim to know my way
I still run in circles everyday
Running around half blind
Life can be unkind
But it's better than it was
It's better than it was
I complain very little because
It's better than it was

I get to remembering
We had a lot more money then
To make a mess of everything around us
Now the money comes and goes a bit faster
Then my confidence grows
Everybody knows
There ain't nothing new about money woes

But it's better than it was
It's better than it was
It's better than it was
It's better than we ever could have
Wished it to before
It was bad a while ago
Better this I know

It's better than it was
Better than it was
I complain very little because
It's better than it was

-Fastball, "Better Than It Was"

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."
Jeremiah 29:11

I'm starting to see now that, even when things have seemed hopeless, even when I've thought that I can't possibly keep going, can't possibly get out of whatever mess I find myself in, somehow the worst never happens. I may anguish for a while and fret and stew, but the sun comes up the next day, the world keeps on turning, I keep breathing in and out and putting one foot in front of the other. God has never yet let me down, and I see now that He's been the one carrying me all along. It's not my strength getting any of this done, and now that I see that, maybe I'll finally have sense enough to get out of the way and let God do. My faith has waxed and waned over the years, and the past two or three or four years have likely been the lowest point to date. I don't know His plans, but I've got the hope back, and I'm eagerly anticipating the future that is to come.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Happy Christmas to me!

Guess what I'm doing on Monday? Getting a new garage door opener! Yes, it's a thrill a minute at my house, but this is a huge deal. I got a new opener just over a year ago - a Genie, bought it from Lowes, and the darn thing has NEVER worked properly. The remotes never would open the door from outside (which is, of course, where you *want* a garage door remote to work), and most days wouldn't even work inside the garage. New batteries, new remote, a different kind of remote, and a whole host of phone calls to Genie later (Lowes said call Genie, and Genie said they didn't send out service people, but they'd try to help me by phone - gee, thanks), it still doesn't work.

So I'm taking my Christmas money and getting a new opener installed. Midlothian Garage Door Service will be at my house Monday morning between 8 and 10 AM (and could have been there today, if I were home), and the owner said the new opener WILL work when they leave, and that I can call him anytime if there are problems. I think I'll shop locally from now on. It may end up costing me a bit more, but I'll know who to get in touch with if I need some help.

No more parking the car out in the driveway in the wind and rain and cold! Yay!!! Happy Christmas to me, indeed!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Much to catch up on

No zoo job for Brian. That's a bummer, but still, teaching may work out to be the better thing for him. So he's still applying. Yes, a permanent, full-time job would be preferable to taking sub assignments and whatever can be done in the summer and hoping for a full-time assignment for the start of the 2008-09 school year. But there are enough school districts close by that finding plenty of work as a sub shouldn't be hard to do, and if teaching is what Brian is meant to do, then something will work out.

My dad came for Christmas. He called the Thursday before and said he was coming for Christmas Day, and I nearly fainted. I love my dad, but he's a Perfectionist with a capital P, and my house is nowhere near perfect. So Brian was here that weekend, and we frantically cleaned and dejunked and stowed stuff out of sight as much as possible. I had to go to work on Monday, and Brian was here with J. He called me about 2:30 and said, "Guess who's here!" Yep, my dad. So much for doing any more cleaning before he came over, it was what it was, and what it was, was a mess. The house was certainly not up to dad standards, but you know what? It was OK. He might have come near to biting a hole through his tongue to keep from commenting, but he said not one word about the clutter around the house. And we had a nice visit. This was the first time my dad had come to my house in five years. The last time he was here was shortly after J was born. So there was no way in the world I was going to tell him not to show up. I worry about him, though. The tremors are more noticeable now, so that either means he's becoming accustomed to his meds or the Parkinson's is progressing, or both. My stepmom and I were both worried about him driving by himself, but once my dad gets an idea in his head, it's not coming out, so drive by himself he did. He didn't stay long, he headed back home before lunchtime on Christmas Day, but I'm glad we got to spend some time together. J was glad to see his papaw, which made me happy, and probably my dad, too, especially since they don't see each other very often.

And Santa was good to us. J got a lot of goodies, but the big thing was the Wii. He seems to prefer watching me play most of the time, as he gets aggravated when he can't make it do what he wants and refuses to wait for direction most of the time. But he's shown himself to be quite the pro at boxing, of all things. He has a little running commentary going as he plays: "Go! Get him! Smash him! Pow! Bang! You gonna mess ME up?" and on and on. I really need to get video of it, because it's pretty darned funny.

More kid funnies: J's stepsister has apparently claimed him for her own. J went to K's on Christmas night and stayed the next day, and his stepsister followed him around constantly, asking where "her J" was and saying she was going to sit by "her J". Heaven help any future girlfriend of J, as his stepsister is likely to knock said girlfriend's block off. LOL

I'm sure there's more I need/want to write about, but this will have to do for now. It's bedtime.

Friday, December 14, 2007


J went to school on Thursday with the understanding that he would apologize and offer to help clean up the mess. One of the guys at the Y program told me that evening that J offered to help not once, but twice. So he did well, my little boy, and I hope this will stick with him and there'll be no more coloring on the floor.

Today was the first day Brian might possibly have heard from the Dallas Zoo. No word. Hopefully that means he'll hear something Monday, and not that he didn't get the job. Twitch, fidget.

I'm going to be up late tonight, trying to finish up Bright Blessings orders and get 'em out the door. I wish I had more hours in the day, so I could devote more time to that. Heck, I wish I could quit my day job and do Bright Blessings full time, but I'm nowhere near that point, and may never be.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Unnecessary decoration

K just called (he picks J up on Wednesdays and they go do something, just the two of them). J got into trouble today. At the after school program, he was given a time out for some minor infraction. While in time out, he took it upon himself to decorate the gym floor with crayons. If it doesn't come out, the Y (they run the after school program) will be responsible for it, and I don't know if that will somehow be passed along to me or what. J knows better. He knows we only color on paper, and I've never had him color on anything like that at home, at least not since he wasn't old enough to know better. I'm so vexed right now, I could scream.

The wai-ai-ting is the hardest part

My apologies to Tom Petty. LOL

Brian had his interview with the zoo on Monday. He felt like it went pretty well. He said there were a couple of points he knew he wasn't as strong on (for example, management experience - he has experience managing a classroom, but that doesn't seem to count as "management experience"), but he did as well as he could on those and did fine on other questions. They had three more people to interview, and apparently they're looking to make a decision soon. They asked when he could be here if he were offered the job. He said he had to give a month's notice to his current employer, and they asked, "So you could be here by mid-January?" Given that his interview was on December 10, I'd say that sounds like they may have a decision by this Friday (December 14 is just about mid-December, after all). So now we wait. I hate waiting.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

From one extreme to the other

Yesterday we were wearing shorts. Today it's 35 degrees out and they're talking about possible ice storms and freezing rain. !!! It's true - if you don't like the weather in Texas, wait a minute, it'll change.

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Guess I'd better enjoy it while it lasts

We've been watching Monster House tonight - cute movie, and apparently my kid is going to be a scary movie freak. It fazes him not at all. Anyway, the main characters in the movie are pre-teen/early teens, I guess, and at one point the girl kisses the hero of the film. J saw that and said, "Ewwww, gross, stinky girl kisses!" I'm sure the time will come all too soon when he doesn't think girl kisses are stinky anymore.

Friday, December 07, 2007

It's all fun and games until someone has to lose

Tonight was movie night at J's school - free movie, pizza for a dollar a slice, drinks and snacks for 50 cents each. I love that his school does things like this. It's inexpensive entertainment, and it gives us a chance to get away from the TV and get out and do things. (Yes, I know, movie, TV, both involve watching something on a screen - but a movie with a cafeteria full of elementary school kids is definitely not a sedentary activity!)

J must have been hungry - he ate FIVE pieces of pizza when I was there, and the woman who works with the after-school program said he had three pieces of pizza between the time school ended and the time I got there. *eek* I'm thinking growth spurt. That, or lunch today wasn't quite what he was hoping for and he didn't eat. We got our food and put our blankets out in what we thought was a good spot, but had to move to be closer to some of J's friends. The movie started at 7:00, and the feature this evening was to be The Santa Clause 3. Not having seen 1 or 2, I worried that we wouldn't be able to follow the plot, but it was fine. It was actually a pretty cute movie, or at least the parts I got to watch were. J decided that mama made a great pillow, and laid down on my back. Have you ever had a 50-something pound boy lying on your back while you're lying on a tile floor? One word: ouch. Hard to concentrate like that, that's for sure.

But anyway, we watched the movie and stuffed ourselves full of pizza, and J got to play with some of his friends. And at the end of the evening, there was a drawing for door prizes, one of which was a copy of the movie we'd just watched. J waited anxiously for the number to be called...and was crushed when it wasn't his. He sobbed and cried that he'd wanted to win, he didn't win anything, everyone was supposed to win a prize. I explained to him that no, everyone didn't get a prize, there were only three prizes, and way more people than that. Sometimes you win, sometimes you don't. He was pretty well inconsolable all the way out to the car, until I thought to tell him that who knew, Santa might leave that movie in his Christmas stocking. And you never know, stranger things have happened.

He sacked out sometime after 10:00 tonight, and I'm going to get myself to bed here in a minute. Just because he was up late doesn't mean he'll sleep late - never has. And we've got lots to do tomorrow!

And what's with the weather?!

It's in the high 70s today. Apparently the weather pixie missed the memo that it's December. But hey, I guess I'll take short sleeves over shoveling snow any day.

Christmas shopping

Well, I'm pretty much done with shopping for J! He's getting a Wii this year. (OK, OK, *we're* getting a Wii - I'm excited about it for me, too!) He's quite the little gamer, and can take off and play most anything if I'll help him read the instructions. He enjoys playing games, he likes his stepbrother's old Playstation (at least I think it's a Playstation - Playstation, XBox, something or other), and I figured that with the Wii, at least it's motion controlled, so he'll be up and jumping around, and it's something we can do together. I'm pretty darn excited about it. I've got accessories on the way, and I'll grab a few stocking stuffers, but that's all done.

Family - we're doing homemade things this year, and pictures of the grandson. Those always go over well, especially since grandparents don't get to see J so much as they might like, with us being in different states.

As for me, there's just not a whole lot I want. Now I understand why my mother never could give me gift ideas for herself when I was growing up - it's so much more fun to do for J and to do for those I love that honestly, there just isn't anything I could ask for. Well, except for a job for Brian. If God could see fit to open some doors up this way sometime soon, that would be the best Christmas gift of all.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

What's your elf name?

In the spirit of the season, I've swiped this from Dixie's blog and placed it here, for the entertainment of anyone who might happen by.

Your Elf Name Is...

Happy Sticky Fingers

Wouldn't it be nice if this was right?

Today's online fortune cookie:

"Your enterprise will bring great profit."

Well, that would be a dandy way to start the new year! My experience with Black Friday sales has been very enlightening. I didn't get vast quantities of orders - barely in the double digits. But for me, as a one-woman show, trying to work around my day job and motherhood, it's more than enough to keep me hopping. In the interest of keeping my products top quality and keeping turnaround time reasonable, I'm going to cut my scent list back a good bit after the first of the year. Having orders for tarts in forty or fifty different scents, one or two of each, is tough on me. You can't make just one tart at a time, so I end up making at least half a pound's of wax worth (about four tarts, or two tarts and two batches of tiny twinkles), and hope the ones not needed right then sell at some point. So I end up making forty or fifty batches of tarts, using a lot of wax, and possibly ending up with a lot of excess inventory. Yep, definitely a learning experience. But hopefully cutting down on the number of scents will help with that.

It's been a day at work. I spent the morning getting stuff ready for committee review this afternoon, and then I got to go to the Dallas Estate Planning Council meeting for lunch and a presentation. Free lunch - always good. Free CLE (continuing legal education) hours for listening to the presentation - even better. The meeting turned out to be longer than we'd thought - lunch from 12:00 to 12:30 and then the presentation from 12:30 to 2:30, instead of the usual one-hour presentation. Good for me, that means one more hour of CLE credit than I expected. The speaker was really good, and seeing her talk reinforces for me that it's a good idea that I never went into private practice. I'm just not convinced I have the personality for it.

And now it's after 3:00 and I'm trying to motivate myself to be wildly productive. Ha, ha. Wish me luck.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Honestly, who thinks up this stuff?!

Leapin' lizards! The things people will do to get high.

Originally posted on the Kansas City Star website.

A 21-year-old Kansas City, North, man arrested in October is accused of possessing a controlled substance.

Clay County authorities are worried that the unusual type of substance -- the venom of the Sonoran Desert toad of the Colorado River -- in the case against David S. Theiss is becoming popular.

Officials accuse Theiss of possessing the toad with the intent to extract the venom to smoke it.

Clay County Prosecutor Daniel White said the case is an example of the elaborate lengths some people are going to in order to get high.

White said possessing the toad is not illegal, but investigators, not familiar with the method, had to research the toad to make sure it is not a protected species.

White said Theiss was charged after investigators determined he allegedly possessed the toad with the intent to get high off its venom.

White said the toad has gained popularity because it secretes venom on its back when the creature becomes angry or frightened -- a venom that contains a hallucinogen called bufotenine.

The hallucinogen and what authorities refer to as 'toad smoking' are illegal, White said.

Authorities found the toad and other items when they went to a Northland residence to investigate a suspected meth lab. They later arrested Theiss and charged him with three counts of possession of a controlled substance and one count of possessing drug paraphernalia -- the toad.

For years, White said, people experimented with 'toad licking,' but toad smoking is considered a substitute. To do so, a person heats the frog's venom, which breaks down its toxins and preserves the hallucinogen. Then it's dried and smoked.

White said the use of a toad and extracts from natural plants to get high are becoming popular. He said there are some Internet sites that feature an instructional video on how to extract the toad's venom.

'It is easier to get it, and law enforcement might not immediately know you use it to get high,' White said. 'It's sort of a New Age way to get high. You convince yourself it is OK because it is something you get naturally from our environment.

'There are a lot of things that are created naturally but they are still not legal.'

Theiss is also accused of possessing mescaline, a controlled substance extracted from a cactus.

Still, White said, there are others who may be taking an even more extreme measure to get high -- such as sniffing fermented human waste.

Vicky Ward, manager of prevention services at Tri-County Mental Health Services, said she has seen e-mail warnings about kids getting high off a drug called jenkem. The drug, made from fermented feces and urine, isn't prevalent in the area, but kids are familiar with it, she said.

'We work with a lot of youths and we ask them whether anyone has tried it and they said no,' said Ward, who belongs to service e-mail groups for prevention specialists. 'They (the youths) have heard about it because it is on the Internet.'

Ward said, a Web site that investigates urban legends, indicates the use of jenkem is undetermined.

'Kids get ideas that later turn out to be unfounded, but you will get some idiots who will try anything,' she said.

For pity's sake, who was the first person to think, "Gee, I need a good buzz...let's see...hmm, no tequila, no beer...Hey! I've got it! I'll just give this little ol' toad a lick!"???? That's either someone who's desperate to get hopped up on something or other, or someone who doesn't have the sense God gave a rutabaga, to be licking a toad in the first place.

Of course, the former prosecutor here wants to know - how exactly did the police determine this guy possessed the toad with the intention to get high off its venom? Did they catch him in the act? If not, I wouldn't want to be the one taking that case to trial, because there'd really be no way to prove it short of actual viewing of the offense or the guy admitting he planned to do that.

Where's a sledgehammer when you really need one?

If I had one, I'd go destroy our stupid printer. We've had people up here messing with the printers, supposedly changing them out as part of some "print optimization" project, and now that we're essentially two different companies, we have one printer with one type of letterhead and one with another. I've been trying to print a letter for half an hour. The first time, I forgot and sent it to the wrong printer (wrong letterhead). The forty-seven times I've tried since then, I sent it to the right printer, but the first page WILL NOT PRINT on letterhead. GAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH.

And when I finally went and copied it onto letterhead and took it to the administrator for her signature, she informed me I'd done her signature block incorrectly. I scream now, 'K? I am so ready to go home, it's not even funny.

I am the mama.

This occurred to me this morning as I was on my way to work. I was listening to Christmas songs, and one of the songs I grew up with came on, and it dawned on me. I am the mama. I am the matriarch of my little family. If any Christmas traditions are to be made or carried on, it's up to me to do it.

I think it's time to get back into my Christmas baking. I haven't really done much of it since Mama passed away, and that's one tradition I don't want to lose. And I'll have to think of some new traditions that can be just for us.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Not tonight

I'm not making tarts tonight. I'm cleaning up the kitchen, taking a big ol' bath, having a glass of eggnog, reading a bit, and calling it a night. Tomorrow I'll have to work double-hard, but tonight I need the break.

But a better evening

I picked J up from school this evening, bracing myself for his usual complaints of "but I'm not done PLAYING yet!" (Mind you, I'm glad he likes the after-school program, and him not wanting to leave is better than the alternative, but when you've had a really crappy day at work, hearing your child cry all the way out to the car that he wasn't finished playing, he didn't get to do X, Y or Z and he wants to stay at school all night just doesn't do much for your mental well-being!) To my surprise, there was a minimum of fuss and muss. We went to the reindeer store and picked out little gifts for grandparents, stopped for take-out on the way home, and now it's just about time for bath and bed. All things considered, it's been a good evening so far.

Let me see about getting him settled, and then it's time to do a load or two of wash and make a batch or three of tarts.

Another brilliant start to the day

J was in rare form last night and this morning. I know being spirited means he really does feel things more intensely than other kids, but OMG, the drama. I picked him up from school. He asked if I brought a snack - well, no, but we're five minutes from home. Aaaaaand the wailing commenced. "I wanted a SNAAAAACK! I'm HUNGRY! I never get any snacks to eat in the caaaaaar!" He gave that up about halfway home, and when we got home, I gave him some peanut butter crackers while I fixed dinner (pizza bagels for him, which take all of about five minutes). He sucked those down and asked for more just as I was putting the pizza bagels in the oven (meaning, they needed to toast under the broiler for just a couple of minutes, and then they'd be done). I told him no, no more snacks right then, that dinner would be ready in just a couple of minutes. And more wailing about how he was STARVING, he never got anything to EAT, and on and on.

This morning: We woke up, not quite late but not as early as I'd hoped. I told him to go brush his teeth. Screaming and "I don't know HOW to brush my teeth!" Lisa goes and bangs her head against the nearest wall. He certainly does know how to brush his teeth - I love how, if he doesn't *want* to do something, he suddenly doesn't know *how* to do it. So we're working on getting teeth brushed when he starts screaming again. What?! Why are you screaming like your hair is on fire? He tells me his arm hurts. I don't see a mark on it, he seems to be able to move it OK and wiggle his fingers and everything, and I tell him he probably just slept on it funny, that the soreness will work out after he's been up and moving for a while. I gave him a dose of Motrin just to be on the safe side, but I didn't see a thing wrong with his arm. But he screamed like it was broken in three different places or something.

And trying to get out the door makes me nuts. How do you get your child to grasp the concept that when it's time to get ready and go to school, we don't worry about things like putting the feet back on our Bionicle that's going to be at home all day anyway. I told him we needed to get out the door, that we were close to being late and it was time to go right then, and he starts howling because I won't take the time to fix his Bionicle that he's just dismantled. *bang head, bang head, bang head, wish for Kahlua in morning coffee* I was worn out before we ever got out the door.

And we're still struggling with the concept of the reindeer store (the store they're having at school to give the kids a chance to buy presents for their family members). We've had this conversation more than once. He keeps insisting we need to buy presents for him there, that no one gets him any presents. I'm trying to explain to him that he buys presents for others there, and we buy for him (me, Daddy, Brian, the horde of grandparents, etc.), and no one knows what they got from anyone else UNTIL CHRISTMAS, because we don't open our presents UNTIL CHRISTMAS. This is all going over like a ton of bricks with the boy who thinks all the presents should be for him, right this minute. *wish for Kahlua AND Bailey's in morning coffee* I sent him with a budget and instructions to buy for parents today. The reindeer store is open late tonight, so I told him we'd take care of grandparents this evening, together. I can only imagine what he'd do if I tried to send him with enough money to buy that many gifts - come home with things for himself, I'm sure.

It just makes me tired that everything seems to call for a big dramatic production. (I'm a Gemini, I don't do drama so well.) I can understand disappointment - it's fine to be disappointed over something and to express that disappointment. It's understandable that sometimes you're so disappointed, you cry. But having to have the same conversation over and over again, and having every disappointment, big or small, expressed in the form of tears and screaming, that just wears me right out. I love my son dearly, I just wish I could help him figure out some way other than the meltdown to get those feelings out. I think I'm spirited, too, which is part of the problem - we both want things how we want them, when we want them, and depending on the circumstance, one of us isn't going to have that happen. That's when he gets weepy and I get impatient, and then all heck breaks loose. Maybe I need to learn to step back and do a better job of staying cool - I'm the parent, after all.

Happy news!!!

Brian has an interview with the Dallas Zoo tentatively scheduled for Monday, Dec. 10! It would pay less than teaching, and he'd have a yucky commute like I do, but if this works out, he'd be here before the end of March!

Monday, December 03, 2007

Monday miscellanea

The day started with a bang. We overslept - always a good start to the day. I got J to school on time, then realized I'd left my purse at home, so I had to go back and get it. Traffic in downtown Dallas, and most especially in our parking garage, was like idiots on parade - I just love it when you've got one really.poky.person at the front of a line of about fifteen cars all trying to get into the garage, and that one poky person must try to squeeze his or her car into EVERY.ITTY.BITTY.SPACE they find. Whoops, the car doesn't fit, let me back out and p-o-k-e around to a lower level to try again. I'm thinking, just go down to level F already, there's always plenty of parking there! So, the morning was off to a zippy start, and I was wishing for a redo by about 9 AM.

Then I found out I was going to be priority one for taking calls for our sister team while they were out on their team outing. I HATE taking calls. Loathe it with a deep and undying passion. I do it because I have to, because it's part of my job, but it's sure not my favorite thing, and I really don't want to be a priority one any more often than I absolutely must. (I'm usually a priority four for our team, and I take very few calls, which suits me just fine.) And naturally, this was the afternoon the crazy man called. A lot. I was hung up on two times, a couple of my other teammates were hung up on a couple of times, and finally, the third time I got the call, he let me transfer him to a manager to discuss his issue. He then proceeded to hang up on her. Good times!

I've made three batches of tarts tonight: Lavender Flowers, Fudge Brownie Buttercream, and Wildberry Crisp. J now wants to help me make tarts. I've let him mix color and/or fragrance into the melted wax, but only with very close supervision. My busy, easily distracted little boy and a pot of melted wax just screams of the possibility of disaster if I turn my head for a second, so I don't. But I hate to tell him a flat-out "no" when he so very much wants to help. Thankfully, he loses interest after just a little bit, and I can breathe again.

Darling, I forgive you everything,
Anything is better than to be alone
In the end I guess I had to fall,
Always find my place among the ashes

Can you imagine being so afraid of being alone that you'd make a really bad decision? I think that's what K has done. I think he let his fear of being alone override the red flags he may have seen when he was dating A, and married her anyway, and I'm afraid that now he's realizing he's not happy, he's made a mistake. I may not be married to him anymore, but I don't want to see him miserable (and I also don't want to see J miserable when it comes time to spend time with his father). I hope he can find the wherewithal to either make things work (which would also require A's participation - I know from experience that one person can't fix a marriage alone) or to make a break if things can't be fixed. I hope his worries over being alone don't lead him to stay in a situation where he isn't happy. Life is both too short and too long to let yourself be miserable.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

The slacker blogger returns

Yes, once again, I've fallen way behind in my blogging. Bad Lisa, 20 lashes with a wet noodle.

I'm working on the Bright Blessings orders that I got during my Black Friday promotion. Not a huge amount in terms of numbers, but plenty to keep little old me busy. I'm a one-woman show, and Bright Blessings is just one of many jobs I do each day. I wish I could take off a couple of days and just work on orders, but it's the end of the year and I've got precious little vacation time left.

Brian didn't get the National Archives job, which was a bit of a downer, but perhaps that's God's way of directing him elsewhere. We've talked about it a good bit, and he's feeling like he should get back into teaching. When he found out that all it would take to reinstate his certificate was an online application and a whopping $47 fee, we took that as a pretty big sign. He'd been worried that he'd have to take tests or pay exorbitant fees or both.

And so now comes time for the leap of faith. At first Brian had said he'd wait until his current lease was up to move this way and start looking for jobs, but his lease isn't up until the end of May. Well, neither of us wants to wait until then - for one, he'd likely miss out on applying for any teaching positions for the 2008-09 school year if he waited until then, and for two, two years is a damn long time to do the long-distance thing. So he's moving here at the end of March, and getting his name on the substitute lists for all the nearby districts (there are enough that he should be able to work nearly every day, if not every day), and hoping for a full-time position in the fall. They're opening a new elementary school right around the corner (literally) from the house, and the positions there will be filled from February through April 2008. It would be wonderful if that worked out - he wouldn't have to make the drive to Dallas/Fort Worth every day (and that would save us on gas money), and his schedule would be comparable to J's (which would save us a ton on after school care during the school year, although we'd likely do some summer programs to give J the chance to interact with other kids and burn off some of that extra energy he's got). So, we're praying for something to open up along those lines. Either way, we'll be in the same house as of the end of March. Eek! Yay!

Of course, once we'd talked about teaching and decided to go that route, Brian got an e-mail regarding a position he'd applied for back in July. Pays less than teaching, but would keep him in the museum field - I told him it never hurts to talk to them. It would involve a commute to Dallas, though, which would stink for him.

Anyway, I reckon all of this means there'll be a wedding at some point in the spring. No date yet, nothing official, and I doubt seriously we'll go for anything big - we've both had the fancy-schmancy church wedding before, and neither of us feels a need to repeat it.

Speaking of wedding - a J funny: We went to see Brian's parents for Thanksgiving. We were at the dinner table, and (naturally) at a lull in conversation, J looks at Brian, points to me and says, "Brian, marry her." LOLOLOLOL I nearly spit out my mouthful of tea. If we weren't already at the point of planning to get married, that would have been embarrassing! As it was, it was just funny.

And speaking of J, he got his second six weeks report card on Friday. He's taking kindergarten by storm - he got all S's (for "successful" - no actual letter grades in kindergarten) for the second six weeks, he knows all his uppercase and lowercase letters and the sounds they make, he knows nearly all of the 34 sight words they're supposed to know by the end of the year, he got all good marks in conduct, and he's up to level C in reading (the kindergarten levels are non-reader, A, B, C, and D, and first grade reading starts with E - I'd be surprised if he's not up to a first-grade reading level by the end of the year). I'm so proud of my big boy!

Midnight already, and tomorrow is Monday. I don't feel like it should be Monday already. I'd better get some sleep. Year-end will be a busy time for me now that I'm in my new role!