Just Another Blog

my random ramblings about crafts, writing, books and kids

Archive for the category “life”

A Conversation with Jack

So this happened with my seven-year-old son.

Jack: When can I have my tablet back?
Me: On Monday after you do your homework.
Jack: But why?
Me: Because you got it taken away for not going to bed when you were told and lying about it.
Jack: But I didn’t!
Me: You were standing right here when I told you to go to bed at 9:30 then you lied to Daddy and said no one told you to go to bed.
Jack: But I didn’t lie. No one told me that.
Me: You were standing right here! You even whined about it.
Jack: No I didn’t.
Me: You’re lying to me about lying right now.
Jack: No I’m not.
Me: o_0

Kids.

Mine really do crack me up. When they’re not making me want to strangle them. I try to write down as many ridiculous conversations as I can. There are a bunch on my tumblr.

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Happy Birthday Owen

My oldest son turned 16 today. He wants to get a job so he can save up to take driver’s ed. Not ready for this.

 

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(taken on the first day of school last month)

Look how tall he is? Almost to the top of the garage door! Getting close to 6’1″.

 

Back-to-School

It’s that time of year again. The air gets cooler, the leaves start to fall, and the kids are finally out of my hair. Finally. There was some question if this was going to happen earlier this week with the fires raging so close to home. The kids were disappointed to learn the flames never left Archer Mountain so school was on as scheduled.

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Owen (10th) & Brenna (9th)

 

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Nora (6th) and Meagan

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Meagan & Jack (2nd)

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Jack showing off his new bookbag

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This sums up the first day for everyone

Everyone got off okay except for Nora. Her bus never came. There was apparently a mix-up in the bus times between the high school and middle school. And the driver was new. The bus was supposed to come at 7:45am. At 8am, it still hadn’t arrived. School starts at 8:04am. Nora waited until 8:10 then started walking because she was already late. The neighbor across the street decided to drive the one other kid still waiting (I guess he lived next door to her) and offered to take Nora, but she’d already gotten a ride with a friend’s mom who was on her way back from dropping her daughter off.

 

The bus did eventually come by–45 minutes late. Which meant it was 15 minutes late to pick up the elementary kids. Not that Jack minded. There were some problems with getting Jack home as well. The bus went all over the place instead of the route it was supposed to take. He was twenty minutes late getting home. The father of the new kindergartener at the stop was on the phone with the school, freaking out. Poor guy. I tried to warn him that the bus is always late the first day.

Everyone had a good day. Jack loved school and Nora was finally excited to be in middle school. She loves her drama class the most (first period so she missed half of it the first day).

And me? I’m enjoying my time alone. Or would be if Meagan was in school. She should be a senior but dropped out and just hangs around the house, bugging me. Hopefully, she’ll find a job soon (I’m not holding my breath, though).

Delayed again

Part three of my Story Engineering series has been postponed on account of Oregon burning to the ground. Washington, too.

 

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(C) whereintheGorge.com

 

The Eagle Creek Fire spread downriver to within eight miles of my town. Then it jumped the Gorge, lighting a fire on the Washington side. Ten miles from my house. We spent Tuesday waiting to see where the fire would go and if we’d need to bug out.

Thankfully, it stayed close to its origin point. We’re safe for now. The kids are disappointed. They have to go to school tomorrow (first day!).

It’s been a long stressful few days.

#EagleCreekFire

I live in the Pacific Northwest–Southwest Washington state, outside of Portland, OR, to be specific. Contrary to popular belief, it does not rain here 24/7, 365 days of the year. It isn’t always gloomy and cloudy.

In the summer, it’s dry and hot.

And do you know what doesn’t mix with dry, hot conditions? Fireworks. We’ve been under a burn ban for a while now. I mean, duh?

But there are always those idiots that don’t get the danger. A lot of them are teenagers. Who light fireworks in a state park in the middle of a dry spell. That’s how you get the Eagle Creek Fire in the Columbia River Gorge.

The fire started Saturday afternoon and is now over 5,000 acres and spreading west. I live west. In fact, they have been evacuating towns on the Oregon side of the river to Stevenson, WA. Which is a 25 minute drive from here.

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I watched all day as ash fell in the area, covering everything like snow. Black snow.

 

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This was the little bits gathered on our grill around 3:30pm.

The ash: around 3:30pm, around 5:30pm, and almost 7pm.
I’m afraid to see what it looks like in the morning.

 

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These are what we’re calling “ghost” pine needles. They are really just ash in the shape of a pine needle. It’s very sad.

Since this afternoon, they’ve closed the Interstate going through the Gorge and a bridge crossing over to Washington. Several towns have been evacuated. More are waiting and ready just in case. The winds have blown embers, sparking more fires west. Watching the Twitter feed is heartbreaking.

Remember kids: only you can prevent forest fires. By not fucking shooting fireworks off in a forest during a drought.

smokeybear

 

Postponed

I meant to post the second part of my Story Engineering series on Friday. I truly did, but my fifteen-year-old son decided to have a severe asthma attack as I was writing it. So inconsiderate.

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After a call to 911, cleaning his room, and doing laundry all day, I didn’t have the energy to do anything else. I’m still recovering (and still doing laundry–who would have thought five kids could create so much laundry?).

I’m hoping to have the post up by Monday and resume the regular schedule with part 3.

Can it really be considered a schedule if I’ve only made one post?

For the record, my son is fine. It’s the worst attack he’s had since he developed asthma last summer, and all of his inhalers were empty. My husband left work early to take him to urgent care, but in the end, he couldn’t wait that long. I ended up calling 911 because he could barely breathe and was nearly passing out. The EMTs gave him a breathing treatment and his stats returned to close to normal, so my husband took him to the doctor after that.

He came home and slept for a while. Every inch of him was sore, especially his chest, but he was feeling fine by evening. He even helped me cook dinner and was wrestling with his little brother.

Still, couldn’t he have at least waited to nearly die after I was done with my post? Hmm? Teenagers… always thinking of themselves.

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Happy Mother’s Day

Today is Mother’s Day in the US, Canada, and a bunch of other countries.

Don’t forget to call up your mom (or that special woman that is like a mother to you) and tell her how much you love her. *

I wish I could, but my mother died over sixteen years ago. If I could go back in time…

So Happy Mother’s Day to my mom (who is no longer with me):

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Me and my mom in 1985 (I think–I was about 8)

And Happy Mother’s Day to my mother-in-law, Kay (who we lost in March):

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Kay and Jack (3 weeks old) in 2010

And I guess, Happy Mother’s Day to me!

(Christmas Eve 2016–trying to get a nice picture of all five of them is like trying to nail jell-o to the wall.)

*Unless your mother is/was a abusive bitch–then call the “mother” in your life–whether she’s an aunt, a grandmother, a friend, or the old lady down the street. Whomever she may be–let her know how much you appreciate her being in your life.

 

Project Semicolon

No, this isn’t a grammar lesson.

Project Semicolon is a movement that promotes mental health and suicide awareness. The stigma that is attached to mental illness often prevents sufferers from speaking out or even seeking help.

The stigma needs to end. And that starts with all of us rising above and sharing our stories.

I’ve struggled with mental illness my entire life.

[cut for talk about suicide]

Read more…

This Is the Best Day Ever!

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Okay, that might be a bit of an exaggeration, but it’s been a good day.

First, I had an all-time record number of words. 16,236 words to be exact. Of course, I haven’t slept in almost 36 hours. But 16k!

Second, 100 day streak! Yeah, baby.

Third, I finally got my dream minivan!

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I’ve wanted a Town & Country for years. I figured some day I’d settle for a late model Dodge Grand Caravan which is the “poor” man’s version of the T&C. Well, after the truck broke down, my husband had no choice but to buy a new vehicle to get everyone home.

They told me they were getting me a “Susan,” which is what we named the rental we got years ago. I was excited, although anxious about new car payments after just buying a house. But what are ya going to do?

They finally get home, and I’m shocked to not just see my Town & Country, but the thing is flippin’ fully loaded. DVD player, Sirius (which isn’t hooked up), leather seats, imitation wood trim, all sorts of fancy buttons and dials.

Now I really, really don’t want to know what he paid for this or how we’re going to afford the monthly bills. Yikes.

I’m not sure what year the T&C is, but it is, by far, the nicest, most expensive vehicle I’ve ever owned. I get to drive it tomorrow. Squee! The kids want to call it “Destiny,” since it was apparently our destiny to break down there and buy her. I’m secretly going to call her “Felicity.”

Oh, and fourth, my family finally made it home from their adventure. Three days late. But that’s not important because minivan!

I’m kidding. I missed them, and was getting worried. I just didn’t miss the noise and mess. They’ve been home four and a half hours, and already I’m exhausted.

Adventure

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My oldest two kids, Meagan (16) and Owen (15), somewhere in Nebraska.

My husband took the kids to Missouri for his mother’s funeral. They left on the 1st and drove 2,000 miles straight through, stopping to sleep in the truck at rest stops. 2k miles in 2 days.

The kids wanted to go on the trip. It would be an adventure they said. Well, they got their adventure. They were on their way home yesterday when the truck broke down. They made it from Missouri to Oregon and are now stranded about 250 miles from home.

We have no idea if or when they can fix the truck. Or if we can even afford to repair it. Which means we have no idea when they can get home. They’re going to be sleeping on the streets soon since we don’t have money for them to keep staying at a motel (that’s money we can’t use the fix the truck). Talk about an adventure!

Meanwhile, I’m at home worrying about them and dealing with the damn cat.

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Bellamy meowing for the kids… so sad.

He’s almost 9 months old and doesn’t normally care for the kids bugging him, but he’s been so lost since they left. He often sits outside their bedrooms and cries for them to open the door. When they don’t, he gives me this sad look.

I’ve been trying to give him more attention, but every time I pet him, he gets up and moves a foot away. I’m not going to follow after him. Or he starts biting me. That’s a big nope for me. And he doesn’t like to be held. At all. If you try, he will scratch you to get away.

He’s so sad and depressed, he won’t even play fetch with me. And that’s his favorite thing. Poor guy.

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