There *may* or may *not* be an opportunity for me to travel abroad.... so, finding myself without a current passport - I drove up to Seattle today so that I can make my appointment at the passport office tomorrow.
I actually grew up in Seattle - well, just outside in (what was once) a small town called Woodinville. I went all through elementary school here at Cottage Lake Elementary. I have so many fond memories of the area, of our home - of the tall, tall trees and the wet weather....
Perhaps this might explain my Twilight obsession.... hahahaha
Or, possibly moreso my remaining obsession with flannel shirts and Birkenstocks.
(BTW.... on a friends old, archaic laptop and *sans* online spellcheck.... so deal with it people. haha)
I enjoyed the drive up.... I had posted on FB that I needed a place to sleep and - to my great surprise this guy was trying to convince me to stay at his place and be a booty call.... no. Like: I'm serious. lololol So my drive was a bit distracted by the conversation.... which, by all means, I have no inteniont of being someone's 'booty call' - but... I would be stupid not to admit that I didn't blush and enjoy his descriptive invitation.
Thinking about it.... I wondered what the hell was stopping me.... the kids aren't with me.... why the hell not stop and let this pretty attractive man 'school' me in the bedroom.... I mean: why not?
Of course, there's std's and HIV and morals and values... and the fact that I've *never* ever been that kind of girl... and the children, and the children and the children.... oh - and common sense. But.... I'm woman enough to admit that the thought crossed my mind, if only for a brief second.
I mean. Isn't that a crazy double standard? You better believe that El Capitan is getting his pole waxes in eager-beaver style.... so, why not me?
May be my serious approach to life - and my morals and values... .may be I could just throw those (and all caution) to the wind and wax a pole of my own.....
I mean, at the very least, a girl needs dinner first, right? Dinner and a movie even......?
So, I made it all the way to Seattle (virtue intact) - and got to McGhee's house, which is a place I LOVE. Mcghee and I grew up together (she's in the book) - and she loves purple as much as I do - only she has *taste* and has the house Of. MY. DREAMS. :)
She's warm and welcoming.... she's the kind of friend who you know anytime you see her, you'll share her with a dozen phone calls, friends just 'dropping by' and well... basically, everyone else loves her as much as you do... so you have to share. :) Which is fine.... her daughter is my Goddaughter - so while Mcghee had a meeting, I took the kids out for dinner. We had a *great* time - though I felt bad that the kids were at home because they love coming her as much as I do....
She was River Pheonix.
I was Jerry O'Connel.
She taught me all about Depeche Mode, OMD and Psycadellic Furs.... which, clearly I owe her a massive debt of gratitude for that.
We were *both* Stand By Me.
Mcghee was older and her best friend was Jojo - and one day the two decided to get matching hair cuts. What they *wanted* to get was newwave haircuts where the back of the hair was cut into a backswish witha bit of a tail......
Jojo went first.... and, as Mcghee watched in horror, the woman cut her hair into a "ducks ass" - which is a 1950 boys hair style - spiked at the front and then pulls into the back (think of a faux hawk but on the back of the head) - which actually *looks* like a ducks ass. Literally.
Jojo was scream crying as the cut ended... and the good, good friend Mcghee... knowing the horror that was coming her way: Mcghee sat in the chair and got her very own, blonde, too short, ducks ass.
Not 'pretty'...... but it's the kind of thing a good friend does.
Oh... and I *still* make fun her t
It's a great life when you have friends who have known you since you picked your nose and whiped it on your bedroom wall... .and is *still* friends with you.
(TMI? hahahahahaha c'mon... you know you did something just as gross when you were little....)
Also... and hold onto your seats..... I actually didn't think about El Capitan once today.
Sadly, I can't stay long. Money being what it is - this is strictly business and I'm heading home after my passport appointment - and then home to the babies.... I miss them when I'm gone. I've only rarely ever been away from them - but I know down the road that will change.... but instead of *fearing* that - I'm kind of... aclimating to the idea.
Yet more progress.
My friends are smart... Mcghee just burned her finger by putting into hot candle wax.... ahhh... it's good to be goofy....
I just love being in Seattle.... it's just that litle bit greener than Portland.... plus, it's the home of Pearl Jam: which means it's the best state ever. just sayin'.
Sadly, no time or money to get over to Forks... may be one day.
In the mean time, the week ends on a high note. I hate a coffee..... meeting? I didn't get upset over or about El Capitan... some guy offered to 'tear it up' for me .... and I get to bask in the kindess and laughter of a good friend..... blessed.... :)
So today was.... interesting.
Thus far, no one has ever really asked me out on a date. A few guys called - when the sign first blew up in July - but, while sweet - I kind of had my hands full. Seems odd to call them back now. lololol
I had a few calls from men in prison..... which - you know, one shouldn't judge someone in jail *just* because they are in jail. In our society we value the law, the use of the law and as such we have to believe once a person does the time - they have paid their debt to society. However, as the Mother of two children, I thought it best not to bring home anyone currently wearing an orange jump suit.
There was a *very* nice gentleman from Florida who said he was a widower, had a large home, with a pool. That he could put the children through private school and that all his children were grown and wealthy in their own right - and he felt he was still 'young enough' to assist in raising mine. He sounded very kind and genuine - he said that at his age he was looking for a partner and companion - someone who made life exciting - and he was pretty sure I could be that person. I thought he seemed genuine.... but I also thought that there was a chance I could wind up locked in his basement and someday become his 'skin suit'.... so, while the pool alone was enticing..... I politely passed on his offer.
Since then.... there hasn't been much movement on the male front. Mind you.... what could I expect while I'm so clearly and *publicly* going through my own emotions..... still processing my the betrayal and the loss ... doesn't really make me desirable to men. At least... I shouldn't think it would.
Having said that.... I fully expect that whoever I date/end up with - whatever.... will likely have a past similar to mine. They will be older, have past break-ups or divorces of their own - and most likely children.... that doesn't bother me. So long as they have worked through their issue's and they've moved on maturely and in common sense.... I can handle that.
In fact, I kind of *welcome* that idea: a man who has faced down his own personal inner demons, dealt with them and moved the f*ck on.
The last few months got rough (as most of you know) - the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas was fraught with emotion. In the first place, writing the book kind of brought on an emotional avalanche. Going through our past and *really* thinking about where he and I and *we* went wrong.... was HARD. Really hard. There was an emotional aftermath to that that I as not at all expecting... and while it was painful - taking me right back to my catatonic state.... I was 'saved' by Twilight.
Instead of sinking into a quiet depression of stillness and solitude... I just kept turning on Twilight. It gave my brain and my heart -a break.... it gave me time to mentally 'check out' from my own life and just relax - then enter the world again from a different, more emotionally calm place.
I think most any movie would do it... but for me, it was Team Edward all the way.
As the New Year came and went... I found myself in a very different place.
Now when I saw El Capitan, I really ... no - my *heart* really didn't see anyone that it had known before.... it didn't skip a beat (like it did in the very beginning), it didn't ache with loss (like it did in the months that followed) and .... it stopped feeling heavy like a stone (which is had during the holidays)..... in fact, in a pleasant way, my heart and my mind were bereft of any 'feeling' at all.
Of course, El Capitan can still piss of My Kids Mom - he seems to be exceedingly good tat that.... but - El Capitan's Ex-Wife... she just kind of stopped giving a sh*t. I'm kind of proud of her. hahahaha
(which, by Friends standards, it's one month of 'recovery' for each year of the relationships - so according to Ross, Rachel, Monica, Phoebe, Chandler & Joey ... I'm *right* on track. hahahahaha)
So I find myself in a new space... where the idea of meeting new people is.... exciting and not scary. I'm not sure anyone will be interested... a single Mom with two kids isn't 'attractive' to everyone, and I understand that. My looks/weight might also make me not so ..... 'attractive'.
But i guess in spite of everything.... I still do believe that my 'Edward' - is out there. I blame Lashla - she's an incurable romantic and .... she's rather infectious. I doubt he's got the looks and body of a 17 year-old... and - I'm pretty ok with that, too. In fact, I'm more than ok with that: I'm done being anyone's 'Mommy'. lololol
So TODAY. Well.... today: I had coffee (or, in my case) hot-chocolate with a man.
I know.... I know.... shocking - isn't it?
Successful, educated, well-spoken .... MAN. It was kind of weird.... like - *he* wasn't weird - he was nice and funny and said nice things..... but even though I *feel* ready for coffee or dinner or whatever..... (and since it's been a loooooong time since 'whatever' - I have to admit, I'm a bit curious how that might work... haahha) it was weird to be sitting across from a man I'm not married to.
To be sitting there single.
It was only for a brief moment though - that during coffee I actually thought about it... but it was brief and without any kind of feeling other than a factual recognition that it was a bit weird.
And then I went on laughing and enjoying our coffee(hot chocolate).
I'm not sure where... *if* anywhere it will go.... but I'm pretty proud of making this first big step. It was simple and enjoyable and nice.... no pressure, no nothing.
So then it occurred to me, on the drive home - that I was feeling.... a wee bit excited. Regardless of whether or not anything comes from *this* coffee... there's something a bit exciting about knowing that there will be other 'coffee' down the road... and while I have to keep the best interests of the children at the forefront of my mind.... coffee is pretty exciting.
Unlike Yoga Girl, I'm not going to have a sign from my snatch that say's "Open For Business" - and for allll intesnive purposes, I'm not. hahahaha - but it is hard to go from bitter divorcee to 'ask me out for dinner!'.... but I have fait
Mind you.... if I'm this excited about coffee... what about when someone *kisses* me for the first time in.... well - too long of a time to admit publicly. hahahahahah
Oh.... and then *after* coffee I did 10 miles at the gym.
I've always been a different kind of Mom.
I didn't have a bedtime for my children.
I didn't have hard and fast rules about cleaning up toys.
I didn't care if things got broken.... some of my *worst* childhood memories are adults flipping the f*ck out at me because I accidentally (and innocently) broke something in their home.... that kind of social embarrassment sinks into the skin of a child and permeates their own 'world view' of themselves.... so I never wanted to do that to my own children, or someone else's.
Other Moms planted gardens..... and it's not that I wouldn't *want* to, it's just that I have *the worst* luck getting anything other than weeds to grow (except for my Lillies) - so that was a bust.
Other Moms bought organic.... play date after play date listening how BPA and pesticides were going to destroy the insides of my children.
I'm sure they are right, I certainly know from experience that eating organic taste's better (most of the time) - but.... having a fully organic menu wasn't in the financial cards for us.
There were a few years where I kept a food budget - and so long as I shopped at Wal-Mart and bought *all* Wal-Mart brands foods: I could feed us.
At first, El Capitan fought me on it - he said it tasted like "plastic" and refused to eat it. RE.FUSED.
He pitched these giant tantrums about how there was no 'way in hell' he was going to eat food from 'Desperation Flats'..... he clearly didn't have a grasp on 'desperate' we actually were. lololol
So in the top cupboard I kept foods from Safeway - the usual brands.... and then in the bottom cupboard behind a curtain where I kept the pots and pans - I kept the main groceries - the ones from Wal-Mart. After eating the "plastic food" for a few meals and not knowing it - and having to admit that it *didn't* taste like plastic.... and that it was just *fine* - he said I could start buying all our groceries at Wal-Mart.
I could make spaghetti: $1.89 for one pound of ground chuck, $1.38 for the sauce and $1.00 for the pasta. That would feed all of us for under $5.00. I scoured Campbells Soup recipe's for even cheaper ways to make meals from their soups - easy to do and cuts waaaaay down on costs on ingredients because you work from their soup as a mainstay.
This all worked brilliantly for months and months until I started having problems with my hands, I would wake up and they would be swollen and it would be hard to grab things for a while. Turned out that I had waaaaaay too much salt in my diet and it was causing the swelling/water retention in my hands. So I cut back on the soups for a while.... but we still had to buy our groceries in white boxes with bold navy letters on them: El Capitan called it our "Darma" food (a Lost reference).
I managed to feed us for $250.00 a month for a looooong time by doing all my shopping at Wal-Mart AND by buying as many of *their* grocery products as I could. Milk, yogurt, cereal, sour cream, bread, chicken, beef.... all of it: Wal-Mart brand.
Last year - we *finally* got out very own Wal-Mart in town. Prior to that it was a 30 minute drive in any direction for me to get to a Wal-Mart... the kids and I went on opening day and literally celebrated... *more* money saved in gas now! lololol
Yesterday the kids and I went to said Wal-Mart to buy groceries and only *after* I had run through $151.22 in groceries (and one rubber spider and one glow worm) - did the check out machine fail but only *after* it had run my debit card.
The kids and I waited in the check out while people stood behind us - even though I would politely tell them that the machine was broken - and then stand there as though I were a complete f*cking dumb ass just trying to screw them out of being in the seemingly 'shortest' check out line... only after several minutes ticked by and then they would march away disgruntled as though it were my fault. Awesome.
We were playing the slap hands game, ispy.... and I was running out of waysto entertain the kids, and the manager couldn't get the register to work, so it was decided that I should head home with my groceries and they would call me to sort it all out once the machine was working again.
Mind you .... this is at *least* 30 minutes into the experience. lololol
I felt awkward leaving with the food and having 'not paid', so I left my debit card and said I would be back tomorrow.
Today, after I went to Barnes and Noble to sign more copies of the book - woohoo.... I went over to the Wal-Mart and asked for the manager. Four of them came over, and were shocked that I had come back - turned out that the groceries were never processed on my card and they just assumed I'd order a new debit card and be done with it.
Wow... people are super crappy in this world if *that* is what they assumed. lololol
The manager the day before said that the register would spit out a "void" receipt and they could just ring that through and charge my card again..... *TODAY*- they informed me that the machine literally shut itself down and when they booted it back up - my entire transaction was gone: so there was no actual accounting of the food I had already taken home and put away.
I stood there for a second - everyone was quiet - and then I asked how I was going to pay them then, if there was no record of what I had bought......?
They all exchanged looks and the lady finally spoke up and said, "Well, you'd have to go through and do all your shopping again - and we can ring it up a second time and have you pay.......?"
It really seemed more like a question than an answer.
So, I grabbed a cart and *from memory*, I carefully loaded up the cart again making sure to choose the same brands and flavors from the day before (so their inventory wouldn't be too far off - I was married to someone in retail you know...... ) and then I met up with the manager again.
As she rung me through, she was *stunned* when it came to $139.82. I couldn't remember what I missing (though I'm suspect that two grubby pairs of sweet baby hands got their mitts on some cookies that I didn't notice or some such thing) ..... so I told her we could just ring through a few more of the spaghetti sauce - but she said no.
Then there was a long pause.
"Honestly," she said, "We can't believe you even came back - AND - than you were willing to go to all this trouble to actually pay for the groceries that you already have at home. I feel bad charging you the $139.82 - so let's not worry about the $12 difference and call it even..... is that ok?"
I guess in retrospect, what had intitally started as a benign trip to Wal-Mart had turned into a near two hour affair over two days.... but isn't that just life? Like - sometimes sh*t goes your way and sometimes... it doesn't. I never understand why people can't do simple things like - wait their turn in line, or (more importantly) wait in line and shut the f*ck up while they do it.
Unless your Christ.... then *YOU* are not too important to stand in a TSA line, or a Wal-Mart line, or well... *any* line. And to that end... Jesus himself would be selfless enough to let everyone else go ahead of him - so... point made.
In fact, while I was waiting for the managers to assemble and standing in from of the Customer Service desk a man dashed up in between me and the counter thrusting out his money order paperwork at the cashier. She leaned around him with her head, gave me the 'apology nod' and said, "Someone will be with you in a second.....".
I quickly, and probably a bit too loudly replied, "Well, I f*cking hope so because I'm far too important to wait my turn in line and I'm shocked you didn't know that already........" To which the cashier started giggling and the man with his Money Order in his hands was looking around all curious like - "Whoooooo? Meeeeee?"
sigh. Stupid, rude people make my brain hurt. sigh.
And, yes, I'm not afraid to drop an fbomb in public, especially for either comedic value, or to prove a point: today it was there for both.
Sometimes I wonder what the world is coming to...... there were times when I really wasn't sure how we would put food on the table - being able to buy food I could afford at Wal-Mart *meant* we had food for the month. What an *AM.AZING* gift that is.... parts of Africa are without clean f*cking water - let alone an air-conditioned grocery store were oddly dressed people often wear house-slippers and push overloaded carts with their plumbers crack showing ..... silly as it sounds, *that* would be a luxury for some people.
For us - it's a funny youtube video.... a way to mock people - and sure: it's funny. I get it, though I have to admit I've always been fully clothed when *I've* shopped at Wal-Mart. lolololol
Why should these managers be surprised - paying for my food is what I'm *supposed* to do - it doesn't make me special or even especially good.... it was just the right thing to do. Plus, doing the right thing got me $12 of free 'plastic' food.... so booyah.... this b*tch will take it!
Mostly though.... I was pretty freaking impressed with my fantastically useless memory that I could - from memory alone - repurchase almost $150 groceries within $12 - that's.... kind of rad.
I mean... there aren't a lot of 'wins' in my world these days (and not usually as awesome as yesterday's) - so I'll take my ability to remember useless sh*t as a win and call it a night.... lololol
****NOTE FOR CLARITY*******
NOTHING will change about The Blog - it will remain OPEN AND FREE. I'm not sure I was entirely clear about that.... - there are a few other very popular blogs who have 'subscriptions - BUT, it's really just a way for readers to help support the blogger. THAT IS ALL. You do not HAVE to do - nor will you be unable to read The Blog as you have been for months if you choose NOT to do it. I PROMISE. :) This is totally *optional* and I've taken OUT the word "subscription" because I think it's misleading. It's more like dropping a dollar in the solo-cup of a street performer.... that is all. I'll still be here 'singing' even if you just stop to listen and don't drop a few bucks in my solo cup. Promise. :)
Tonight was the night of the Pinewood Derby for The Boy's Cub Scout Pack. Now.... I'll be honest, I, for one, am not terribly thrilled about *certain* policies that BSA has in regards to their packs.... however, I also believe that change can only usually happen from the inside out - so when The Papa suggested that we join our local Pack - I agreed.
Two years ago, friends of ours joined BSA and asked us to join with them but El Capitan refused..... he thinks/thought that Boy Scouts as 'stupid' and didn't want to do it at all.... so we passed.
This year, however, thinking that The Boy could use some good 'male bonding' time with other kids his age and see strong male role models around him - hiking, wood working, learning patriotic things like Flag ceremonies and salutes and doing what's 'right' in life: all seemed to be messages he should be getting. So The Boy became a Scout - which *should* always be this magical time for him - but usually involves me running about the house two evening's a month in a mad dash to uncover his shirt, hat, belt and scarf thingy (which I know is *not* a scarf but I forgot the damn name.) lololol
Tonight was such a night.
Tonight was the all Pack meeting AND - the night of The Pinewood Derby!!!! The Boy and The Papa have been hard at work learning science lessons about how to reduce friction in the wheels (by rubbing them up and down a thick pile of yarn pulled through their collective center - which The Boy did for many nights in a row) - and The Papa and The Boy finely sanding down the body of the car and the nails that were used as axles.
The derby car was ready to go, however, I still could find the mothertrucking belt... (still haven't) - and I haphazardly threw The Boy his shirt, hat and scarfy thing while running back up the hall to hunt down said missing belt. I was gone a while and when I came back down the hall I nearly ran them over - because standing in the middle of the entryway was The Girl buttoning up brother's shirt.
Her eyes were focused, never moving from the buttons even as I skidded to a stop right next to them. Her forehead furrowed just slightly, her chubby cheeks wrapped into a slight pucker around her lips as she concentrated, weaving her fat, chubby, three-year-old baby fingers around those blue buttons - forcing them through the button-holes one by one all the way to the very top while The Boy stood perfectly still: watching her.
I stood for a moment kind of shell shocked by the moment.... the kindness of it, the love of it, the sweet tenderness of The Girl helping The Boy get ready for his big night.... which was all very magical until I caught site of The Bubbie who was frantically waving her arms at me to grab the camera, which of course I promptly did - and I snapped the wee gem above.
There just aren't words for how much they mean to each other..... of course, The Girl has always been my 'little Mama', she would hold and rock and "feed" her baby dolls as soon as she could sit up. I always marveled at that, because I certainly didn't prompt her and hold up dolls for her to cuddle, it as just something she did on her own. I marveled at that caring side of her then.... and now I'm just in awe of it.
We were off to the Pinewood Derby where The Boy and The Papa's car came in First in two races and Second in two other races, but failed to place in the final timed rankings. I found The Boy after the ceremony to high five him for his achievement and he noted that he didn't "win a trophy like some other kids", but then he quickly, and proudly, noted that he had "Won two times - Mom - TWO TIMES!!!!!!" - and his gap-toothed grin said it all: he was happy. Then he leaned in so close that he knocked his hat to the side and he whisper in my ear...."You know Mom, some of the kids didn't win any of the times we were racing.... so I did really good."
Truth be told, I think The Papa took the times loss a lot harder than The Boy. lolololol
After Scouts we drove to our local 31 for ice cream and he he skip-walked all the way to the front door and ran right smack up to the glass case to choose what he wanted.
Now, when *I* was a kid, there were only two ice-creams I cared for: pink bubble gum in the summer, and one scoop of Very Berry Strawberry & one scoop of World Class Chocolate in a dish (combined, it's one magic flavor). To this day, I get either one of those with the occasional mint chocolate chip - but I've never ventured much away from my usual.
The Boy, however, spends each trip asking for at least two new "taste's" - which he will give a resounding "OH YEAH!!!!" complete with a thumbs up.... or he'll blow a razzberry and shake his head with an emphatic "nah!". In the end, he never chooses the same ice-cream: it's always something new, something different.
Tonight it was strawberry frozen yogurt.
However, mid-taste through the "nah" for Reece's Pieces ice-cream, he looks up at the man behind the glass case and say's, "One scoop of chocolate in a dish, with a sugar cone please - it's for my sister."
Then he ordered his frozen yogurt.
Seriously. I sh*t you not. It's true.
Keep in mind, however, that while going to bed The Boy decided to flop around and go allll kinds of bananas and swiftly (or rather not so) kicked his sister square in the nose - and this was *after* they fought over who was going to get my "Edward" blanket - which I then quickly defused by pulling out TWO brand new Edward blankets ..... which as met with a bevy of squeals. (And... before you judge me too much.... The Boy had a batman blanket, The Girl had a Rapunzel blanket and I had Edward - the fuzzy kind with a picture printed on it... yes, don't judge me... but feel *Free* to laugh at me.... lololol).
I had bought my Edward plush blanket in December at Hot Topic and I also bought a few things for my brothers there for Christmas - and I got these spend $30, get $15 off coupons. Going back in this week, after several nights of bickering of my Edward blanket, I found that they had the blanket marked down to $13 - and so two of those and a Wonder Woman bag for Jenny B had me paying like $10 for all of it. WooHoo!!!!!
The point is..... they fight: over books and toys and little people and leap pad games and taking turns and who's going to use the potty first and what movie to watch and who stepped on who's toys and who is sharing/isn't sharing... and so on.
But under it all, there is a current between them that is stronger than anything else - and it's really the most amazing thing to see between them... it's the thing Miss Cyndie saw in them last year just before our lives blew up. I blogged or wrote in The Book about it... but she commented how close they were and how amazing and unique that was. Today, to still be (emotionally) standing in the shards of my life which keep poking me and cutting me and hurting me at the *most* inopportune times.... to find myself seeing that same bond still there: still strong.
I stood in the hallway after I took their picture and I thought to myself.... "Well than f*ck for that....."
I know - I probably *could* be slightly more poetic, but since it's just me talking to myself in my own head, I tend to keep things real... hahahaha.
Seriously though... thank f*ck for the fact that they are still *who they are* - and this whole giant Yoga Girl mess hasn't destroyed the very core of them that I feared it might.... at least not yet, anyway. So, I will fight to keep it that way.
I'm ok with being a "shitty wife"... or whatever it was that ruined my marriage - because while El Capitan is a rare breed of half-man/half-boy who's decision making has been been on a downhill slide faster than Lance Armstrong's career..... I'd be a fool to think I'm not partially responsible for what happened. (more on that later I think......)
For now, though, I'm happy to head off to bed knowing that for whatever my failings are thus far, I have not yet failed the children. I can see it in their actions with each other - and with their Father..... and yes, I might be fatter than I should be, I might swear a f*ck ton more than most, but I'm a good Mom and at the end of day - (for me) that's all that truly matters. True failure here will not be an acceptable outcome.
So far..... it looks like the 'winner' - is me.
BTW..... I appreciate all the kind words - but - for the moment - I just can't do the ads..... I really really really can't. I'm a lot of things (see above in case you forgot) - but I'm just not for sale..... at least not yet. If all a subscription nets me is a cup of coffee and brunch, then I will enjoy it once a month and know that it came from good people and a good place. :) If only Oprah would find The Book and fall in love with it's raw emotion.... then I could take us all out for brunch! bwahahahahahahaha :)
Wow.So Friday was *insane*. First of all, YUMMY Cupcakes were sent to via from Cupcake Jones - award winning bakery
in downtown Portland... (and my FAVORITE bakery ever!) - and from my wonderful friend and fellow author, Becki Duckworth
. I was very grateful for their kindness and I'm happy to report that I saved a few and the next day the kids were treated to the worlds YUMMIEST cupcakes, in bed for breakfast!!! :)
Second.... the place was pretty packed, which totally shocked Barnes & Noble! The wonderful lady who organizes these kinds of events had warned me several times that they usually expect 10 - 20 people at a 'signing' - that people just don't come out at night for them..... but, MY friends said Friday at 7pm, so against the B&N ladies advice - we went for it.NEARLY 100 people came out (according to the *Very* surprised B&N lady!) - just to see (not-so-little) ole' me... and I have to say, it was equal parts thrilling and nerve-wracking.
Having to get up in front of *all* those pairs of eyes and read for *ten minutes*..... I'll tell you what: that's a really long a$$ time. I read from the chapter where I first find out about Yoga Girl (who is still Ugly Baby Teeth) at the time - editing out the swear words because I felt like we were a bit close to the children's department. lololol - but it didn't seem like anyone listening minded... in fact, people were laughing (with me not at me for once) - and I threw in a few little tid-bits here and there while I read.After the reading, there was a brief Q&A and then ..... *all* the books SOLD OUT. Yup.... I SOLD OUT my Barnes & Noble. That's just..... really, really cool. There were so many people who came - and sooooo many people I didn't know! I was really touched that these nice people spent their Friday night with me... and bought a book! There just aren't words of gratitude that would suffice..... I really cannot thank Barnes & Noble, all the people who came and Cupcake Jones enough. It was *truly* a once in a lifetime event.... and I was so proud to be standing up there. Thank you for providing me such an amazing opportunity. wow.THEN....... Miss Cyndie secretly arranged for a party room at a local restaurant and alllllll my *favorite* usual suspects went over there for dinner/desert and drinks..... Jenny-Jen-Jen, Jenny B., Miss Chloe.... and the wonderful Miss Sarah O who actually DROVE all the way
from Idaho to attend the event!!!!! Which *really* blew my mind..... I think it goes without saying that I have some pretty *awesome* friends.... Not the least of whom Nicolle Camarata
who MC'd the night and introduced me. I've known Nicolle for 12 years - the first night I met her she was working an event with Pink and I was shooting it. Since then, I've done *almost* all of her photography and we've been great friends... *blessed*.After we closed down the restaurant, we then 'closed down' the parking lot - talking and laughing until our toes were too cold to stand anymore.... it was A.MAZ.ING. Truly.
Saturday was good, El Capitan came for his time with the children, which they love and get really excited about - which is super sweet to see. I am less excited... hahahaha. And I wasn't super thrilled to find out that their visit was getting cut short so El Capitan could go to a Blazer game with a friend.... but I guess you can't control what night a game falls on.The kids had a good time, for which I was grateful - and I spent the time having lunch with The Bubbie and my Sisiter-in-Law.Overall.... the weekend was (for the first time in months) without any kind of notable event... any kind of emotional distraction that would let some of the air out my balloons.... until Sunday that is.
We were driving, I was listening to my Twilight soundtrack (of course) - and suddenly I hear The Boy saying... "You know what Mom.... Daddy lied to me."ahhhhh.... crap."Oh, what about?" I ask."Well, you know the day that we took [The Girl] to the doctor and I was sitting with Daddy ...... I asked him how [Yoga Girl] was and he like got kind of mad at me and he just said "I don't have a girlfriend buddy.... let's not talk about it." The Boy explained."Okay.... " I reply... unsure where to go with this."And yeah, because that was in Daddy's mad voice.... but THENNNNNN (which he say's very loud and long-winded while holding up one hand and 'ticking off' his fingers) last week he told me that [Yoga Girl'] was "that serious" or important and stuff... but - that she *was* his girlfriend." The Boy stated."Yes, I can see why you might be confused about that." I replied."So.... Daddy has a girlfriend, but he doesn't want to talk about her." The Boy replied."It would seem that way, but if you want to talk about things, just tell your Dad that you want to talk about it and he will, just like I will." I said."I know.... I know. But, that means that Daddy was a liar to me because first he said there wasn't a girlfriend and now he said there IIIIISSSSS one - but I don't have to meet her. And you know what Mom?" He exclaims."What buddy?" I replied."I don't WANT to meet [Yoga Girl] because she's a rude girl who's like a bully and takes stuff away from people...." He stated matter of factly."Well, I'm sorry you feel that way, but I understand why you feel that way
but I'm glad you talked to your Dad, and it's ok for you to feel that way right now - and it's also okay for you to change your mind and your feelings later.... just remember that, ok?" I tell him."I Knoooooowwww Mom.... I know." conversation over.*nearly* a perfect weekend.... nearly.I talked to the counselor - asking if I should 'defend' Yoga Girl to The Boy (thinking that I should say, "get to know her before you decide..." or whatever) - but they said no. I actually don't know Yoga Girl - and what I do know it's far off The Boy's current opinion - so, they said I would be lying to say she's something other than he thinks. In his world, she's a 'bully' much like one on a playground - who takes your toys or your place in the lunch line.
So I left it alone and didn't bring the subject back up with him.....(and before ya'll write me and holler at me.... I *do not* talk about Yoga Girl in front of the kids or around the kids... I don't have much to say about her - frankly. AND - according to the counselor, his interpretation of Yoga Girl is keeping within how a child his age views the world and the people in it.... so there it is.)
So I just continue to focus on the idea that people in your life can change - good or bad, and you have to be open to the change, open to people being different later. I only hope that is sinking in for... well, all of us, to be honest.There is *one* bit of "Blog" business I wanted to bring up.Last week I was approached by an online ad firm - they seek out blogs and websites that have a certain number of visitors/hits and approach them about adding ads to their site. I reviewed their proposal (which pays pretty well) - but...... it takes over half the main header image, and the ENTIRE right 1/3 of the web page ... with ads. Pop-Up ads.Video ads that start up without you pressing play (those frequently care the *crap* out of me lol)Ads.... ads.... ads.I thought about it. The Book, while a great accomplishment, isn't going to contribute to our monthly finances in any kind of meaningful way..... and this ad firm's proposal was tempting......But I turned it down.In the first place, I'm *barely* a blogger.... lololol. At least sometimes I feel that way.In the second place, I started this blog from an emotional place of honesty and putting a giant 'Target' ad right smack in the middle of it made it seem..... less somehow.It's the easy thing... that's for sure. The simple thing. The lucrative thing to do.However...... I want to do the right thing. And a blog that becomes 1/3 full of ads just didn't fell like the right thing for me to do.Instead, because I'm still a single Mom (have we not beat that drum enough around here?) - another blogger suggested an actual "subscription" to The Blog. I toyed around with this and decided that for those who have asked in the past, those who come here every day - this is a reasonably decent idea.There will be three ways to 'subscribe' - $2.00. $5.00 and $10.00 - paid one time per month.Honestly... if *everyone* who reads the paid 'subscribed' for just $2.00 a month - I could replace El Capitans entire salary. hahahaha No. REALLY. :)I don't think everyone will - not by a loooooong shot. But, whoever does, I can use the money to offset the cost of school fee's and clothes and raising the children. There are *many* of you who (kindly and *amazingly*) come here every day to read The Blog as apart of your morning routine.... and $2.00 isn't even the cost of a cup of coffee.Over time, I'm thinking about putting up some short stories or essay's in a password protected portion of the site as a 'bonus' for people who do subscribe - but there would be NO other changes to The Blog or the information (and the availability of the posts) will remain the same.I hope you will understand why I'm putting this idea forward
- and I thank you in advance for your consideration. :)
Sooo.... tomorrow is "the big night". Which is actually a little more 'stressful' for me than going on The View.
TV doesn't bother me... in that regard, it's a shame I don't have a face for TV because I thought it was pretty fun and I enjoyed it.... sigh.
However... the idea of standing in front a group of people (still hoping for more than 12 - and more than just my family... lololol) - *that* has me feeling a weeeeeeee bit nervous. Actually, like *really* nervous. hahaha
Of course, the idea has crossed my mind that people who "oppose" me or the oppose the sign... or perhaps a few of El Capitan's misguided friends might show up to heckle me..... that would be interesting. El Capitan, himself, will not be there, though he knows about the signing and he .... "wishes [me] all the best".
Which is very nice of him.
I'm supposed to find a passage of the book to read... which is hard. I've flipped through it a few times, but - it's hard know what I could actually get through reading without crying. lolol
I *really* don't want to cry in front of a dozen people - a nice, big, fat, ugly cry... in public? No thank you.
So, I'm not really what I'm going to read just yet...... anyone have any suggestions? haha
I also have no clue what to wear - I'm not a 'fancy' person. I haven't worn a dress since the day I got married..... I'm really much more of a jeans and a t-shirt kind of girl. I tried on a few dresses, but it didn't feel like 'me'... it didn't feel like something I would really wear.
Much like the book, I still want me to be me... not a polished version of me that my own friends wouldn't recognize... so I found a nice brown top - but now I'm not sure it's 'fancy' enough for the event.
Perhaps the real issue is that *I'm* not 'fancy' enough for the event... hahaha. No. REALLY.
Bottom line: I'll be the one at Barnes & Noble who is the *least* dressed up. lolol
Today has been a slow day - just kind of taking in the last minute to-dos for the book signing. The kids were playing alllll day. I kind waited and watched The Boy to see how he was doing with yesterday's bomb-shell. It's weighed on me a little..... mostly because I think the assumption by most people is that I probably talk about Yoga Girl a lot - but the truth is: I don't. She's not a topic of discussion in this house - and not someone I talk to the kids about unless they bring her up.
Even still, her appearance in their father's life has clearly weighed on The Boy - and I try to keep those conversations brief and to the point. I don't know her. I've only met her a few times, had one text 'conversation' with her and one phone call. While I certainly don't think she's a quality person... and lets face facts: she's clearly *not* a good person, at least not in my world. As The Boy has accurately described her, she's *is* the kind of person who takes away other people's toys and doesn't feel bad...... I also happen to think she's immature and rude... but that's just me. And, if this "woman" ends up being some kind of 'step-mother' to my children - then my opinions of her need to remain *mine* and not be shared at large with he children. that's not fair to any kind of future 'relationship' they may or may not have.
Of course, this is how I've functioned, because I only *assumed* that since their father rents an apartment with her - and has lived *with* her since the night he left us. All those nights of "sleeping in my car in the Winco parking lot"... never happened: he was at her place. EVERY. NIGHT.
I could only assume that this person is goign to stick around for a while.... she clearly thinks she's in love him and according to her friends- she believes he loves her. that's he's *her* 'edward' (*if* Edward were the kind of man who would break up his home instead of dealing with either his own personal demons or issue's within his marriage.... which, I'm pretty sure that's *not* Edward.... lolol) - so I naturally assumed she had a level of 'importance' in El Capitan's life that would necessitate him leaving us.
According to El Capitan: I'm wrong.
I think that he thought he was doing the right thing - by telling The Boy that Yoga Girl isn't 'important' to him, and not 'serious enough' to have The Boy meet her. I'm pretty sure that El Capitan thought he was communicating her lack of importance in a way that would 'help' him.
So today..... I watched and waited and said nothing. Sure enough, The Boy wandered over and said:
"I'm glad I talked with Dad about The Divorce......"
"Me, too buddy - I'm glad, too. You can always talk to us about the divorce." I replied.
"Yeah.... you know Daddy has made some really bad decisions." The Boy continued, "Like, he really hurts my feelings and stuff..... but he's still Dad and I can still love him."
"Yup, you sure can." I said - and I noted his tone made it more of a statement and less of a question - which I was pretty happy about. This is has been my focus for months and months... trying to get The Boy to understand that people *will* let him down in this life, but he won't always want to walk away from those people - he might want to figure out how to love them in spite of what they've done.
It's a rough life lesson to learn at 7 ... but there you have it.
And so far it seems.... Lesson Learned!
(two points for Mommy.....!)
A few seconds later he came back over and said.... "But you know, Mom... it's weird that [Yoga Girl] isn't that important to Dad...... why does he spend all his time with her if she's not important?"
"That's a good question buddy, and I don't know the answer." which, I only said because I'm pretty sure I can't say this: "Because one day your Dad decided have his dick licked by a 22 year old *WAS* more important... too bad said 22 year old doesn't know that this role could have been occupied by anyone. Hence why *she* is not as "important" as one would hope she would be....."
But *again* - I stuck only to my former response... not the one in my head.
He said nothing else and he walked away to play with his new Lego's and I was glad because the truth is, I don't have any more answers for him.
So.... it's a sh*tty situation - the whole 'she's not important' thing...... the *good* news is that The Boy seems to truly understand the idea that people *are* going to let him down in this life and it's his job to figure out how to make it work... how to get past it - how to develop a relationship within it - because sometimes people matter, people *are* important enough to do that for. As much as I have my *own* feelings about El Capitan - I'm really glad that The Boy can still navigate having his own - in spite of everything we've all been through.
I'm going to go out on a limb and just say it..... Mommy For The Win!!!!!
And on that note..... you are welcome to come by tomorrow at 7pm at the Barnes & Noble in Tannasbourne,Oregon - I will be the under-dressed, blubbering one standing at the front.
See you then! :)
So..... I've blogged about this a few times in the past - how The Boy talks about Yoga Girl from time to time. For those *just* joining the conversation, to recap: The Boy found out about Yoga Girl *from* El Capitan back in May. El Capitan was over, having his time with the kids when his friend called him on the phone. During *that* conversation - and sitting on a few feet away from our son who was playing with his Little People on, El Capitan told the person he was on the phone that he could "sleep next to a 22 year old every night who does yoga."
Prior to that, I had decided we would only tell the children that "Daddy broke a promise to Mommy and that's why we can't be married anymore." The Boy had asked several time *what* the promise was - but I didn't think that he should know that his father left us for someone else.
You read in all the books about how most kids assume (wrongly) that their parents are divorced because of something they did - or that they could have stopped it by behaving better, etc. I didn't want them to know that their Dad was ..... 'replacing us'. Because *I* was clearly being replaced, and based on El Capitans time with the children and his (chosen) distance from them... he *was* replacing all of us.
Whether or not he continues to do that.... is up to him.
However, once the whor.... I mean - *girl* was out of the bag..... The Boy knew that Daddy had a girlfriend, that she was 22 and she liked "goga".
I've always tried to put a focus on *us* - how we move forward, how we accept where we are - and how we try to heal. I don't talk about Yoga Girl - she's not someone I care to spend any of my time on. And, really, this is about the decisions that El Capitan has made and how we work with what we have and move forward.
However... for The Boy, and for reasons a bit unclear to me - Yoga Girl stays on his mind. Over Thanksgiving he brought her up and came to me and asked me if I thought that Yoga Girl didn't like him - because he's never met her and he was interpreting that as Yoga Girl didn't want to meet him.
I didn't really have an answer... because I'm not El Capitan and I'm not Yoga Girl and I can't answer for what they do and don't do...... I only told him that Yoga Girl didn't know him - but I was certain that if she did get to know him, that she would love him.
The Boy brought up Yoga Girl a few times in December, mostly because he's "mad" at her - he'll tell me. He say's that he's mad that she 'took' Daddy - and that she shouldn't have done that. He tells me that she's a "bully" because she's the kind of person who 'takes other people's' toys.
Well.... hard to argue with that one. So I didn't.... instead, I focused on how we work with kids at school who don't share toys and tried to focus on how when we meet people like that - how we can work things out and still be friends with them. Trying.... though I don't really want to - to set the stage for a day when The Boy does meet Yoga Girl that he can find a way to be 'friends' with her.
I always tell El Capitan when The Boy say's these things.... and, then there's always his bevy of friends who feel the need to *read* this PUBLIC blog and report back what I write to El Capitan (which... those are some pretty dumb friends if they haven't noticed it's a public blog that El Capitan could read for himself....duh.), however, El Capitan doesn't really *talk* to the children about the divorce, or Yoga Girl, or any of this, today however... he didn't have a choice.
El Capitan had his time with them today and almost as soon as The Boy walked in the door he announced that he "talked to Daddy about the divorce" (but, he always whispers the word divorce... like it's a swear word which makes me laugh a little....)
I said, "Oh... that's cool - what'd you talk about?"
"Well, I told Dad that I wanted to talk about [Yoga Girl] - because I told him that I don't really want to meet her... because she's a rude, selfish girl and I just don't want to meet her, Mom......" he stated.
At this point, El Capitan had walked in and was standing just behind me.
"Okay Buddy....." I replied, looking oddly at El Capitan, "You don't have to meet her."
As with *most* conversations, The Boy said his piece and then hurried off to play with The Girl and already started arguing about her using up his blue painters tape (long story there... lolol).
I was *very* surprised that The Boy had said this because we haven't talked about Yoga Girl - or meeting her or anything..... like - recently or whatever. El Capitan lives a life *with* Yoga Girl and steps out of that life with her to see the children....the two lives do not cross paths by his design and I'm kind of okay with that..... I don't want Yoga Girl around my children at all, so while I would love for them to have proper overnights with their Dad.... they are young and still struggling with everything - so I just figure we can take out time to getting tot hat point. (also... El Capitan has be willing to do that.... living in an apartment with his girlfriend and roommates and NO ROOM for our children - isn't very 'willing'. lololol).
El Capitan explained that on the way home The Boy said this to him and he pulled over so they could talk about (good... very good!) - and that he said this to The Boy in response:
"That's okay pal, you don't have to meet her because I'm not that serious with her." and with a totally straight face he went on to tell me that he then said, "She's not someone who is that important to me that you *should* meet her."
um. what the..... I can see that El Capitan thinks this was the *right* thing to tell our son.... and on the one hand: it was. The Boy was worried about meeting her and now he's no longer worried. So - that's good.....?
But. In that same moment, El Capitan *just* told our SON that the woman he LEFT OUR FAMILY FOR isn't important enough to be introduced to our children!?!?!?!?
The thing is.... El Capitan was just being *honest* with our son, which I really appreciate. I do - and I'm glad they talked.... but - am I crazy to think that these words won't come back to haunt us all......? Am I stupid to think that one day The Boy is going to turn around and think..... "You LEFT me for someone who "wasn't important" to you?" and then he seriously upset about that?
Also, I'm pretty sure that that's *not* true. I'm pretty sure that that's *not* the story Yoga Girl is getting - and all their friends they been hanging out with....
Good grief........ co-parenting is a f*&king mine-field. Seriously.
Tonight The Boy kept coming out and asking for extra snuggles at bedtime... which - seeing as he's 8 years old and these days are numbered.... I gave in to each and every one... then I let him stay up late and watch TV on the couch.
I can't answer for what anyone else does.... but *should* my Edward ever come along.... it won't be "months" before that person meets my children. A decent amount of dates in, they *will* sit down at a table with El Capitan to talk about parenting plans and discipline styles and respect.... *then* they will casually meet my children as a friend.... and only *after* it's decided that a more permanent relationship should be sought - so it will be.
This is, clearly, going to be a lot farther down the road for me.... which is fine. The *most* important people in my life are still my children...... I only get *one* chance to mother them..... these days and years will go by too fast and I already have so many mistakes to mourn..... I don't want to waste the time I have with them doing anything other than keeping them at the front of my life.... period.
And with that.... I'm off to bed, to get up and hit the gym for another 10 miles on the bike that will net me a 0 pound loss. lololol... but no - seriously.... I'm hitting the gym like crazy and seeing no results... there *has* to be someone of personal trainer out there who wants to take pity on me? hahahahahah
Oh.... and only two more days until the book signing..... that's just crazy. ......
First of all... I heart just about anyone who calls El Capitan 'stupid' for what he did.... lololol
Aside from that, I had a lovely morning on AM Northwest at the KATU studios in Portland this morning. Dave & Helen were really nice - and my producer for the segment was also *very* kind to me. I was very grateful for the opportunity to talk
about The Blog and The Book.... though I must admit, in all honestly, it's really frustrating to lose over 40 pounds and *still* look the the f*&king broad side of a barn.
Regardless though, it was a lot of fun and it was very nice of them to promote the book signing - which is only a few days away!!!! That seems so crazy to me. I almost don't want it to come... because it's been so much fun just looking forward to it (mind you, if the only people standing there are my family and a few friends I might actually die of sheer embarrassment.... no: seriously. lolol) but, it's certainly going to go down as one of the most exciting things to happen to me in my life after falling in love with El Capitan, having the kids and oh yeah..... being on a tour with The Foo Fighters.... another blog for another time. :)
The interview is good - I kind of miss answering one of their questions about why I call him "El Capitan" - and hence why I keep his identity a secret - but I thought Helen was going to fall off her bar stool when I mentioned how the *main* reason the sign said *what* it said was because El Capitan sleeping next to a 22 year old every night who did yoga was one of the *few* things The Boy already knew.... because The Boy heard El Capitan on the phone bragging to a friend and he used those EXACT words.
That was a bit of a 'bomb shell' they weren't expecting - though that is in The Book. (Which you can buy at the book signing... bwahahahahaha)
I had to get up incredibly early - after being up most of the night with first, The Girl who was sick and up being sick... and then inevitably The Boy - who wakes up from all the commotion. Earlier in the night I had told The Boy to stay away from The Girl- not to touch her or drink from her drink, etc, in an effort to *try* and keep him from getting sick.
So, at like 4:30 in the morning I wake up and The Girl is wide awake and watching the TV in our room and The Boy say's to me, "That's okay Mom.... go back to sleep and don't touch [The Girl] - you have a lot of stuff to do this week and I can touch [The Girl] because if I get sick then I only miss Teacher Bobby's class - and I can just go there next week...... Go back to sleep."
If I weren't so tired, I think my heart might have exploded right there and there... but I could barely muster the energy to open my eyes, let alone let my heart beat faster. What a great kid...... holy crap I'm lucky.
These are the times when I miss having a "partner". In the past, El Capitan and I had a system of sorts - we would sleep in the living room and take shifts with puking/non-sleeping/sick kids, which made the misery of having a sick kid soooo much easier to deal with.
When you're a single parent, there is only one person to caress the hair of a feverish half-sleeping/half-fussing child. One person to cat-nap between vomiting bouts. One person to then entertain and problem solve for TWO children, now wide awake in the middle of the night..... only to have be the *same* person to get up at 6am to prep for a TV interview: hence my superlyawesomeswolleneyes. Perfect.
The Boy is so .... intuitive. He's wise beyond his years which never ceases to amaze me. I have been taking care of The Girl all afternoon, evening and night. I didn't mind.... though I wondered, as I held her warm body while her barf breath blew against my face - just how long it would be before *I* got sick... and - I worried that I would get sick for Friday. BIG worry there.... but what can you do? Not hold your sick and shivering child? Not comfort them and rub their back while their tiny three year old head is hurling down a toilet?
I hadn't complained or gotten upset or been annoyed... what's there to be annoyed about? I'm pretty sure *being* the sick kid is worse than being the parent caring for a sick kid. The only thing I had said - at all - to The Bubbie is that I worried we would all come down with something in time to ruin Friday. Then she made me eat a ton of vitamin C. Yuck.
But here was The Boy anyway, stepping in to take care of his baby sister so I could sleep a little more. It was.... incredibly sweet and I took full advantage of his willingness to sit up and watch TV with his baby sister (sitting in our bed, of course).
Progress was made though because while I missed those extra set of hands.... what I *didn't* miss was El Capitan. I didn't think about that until I was driving home from the TV studio, but once or twice during the night I thought about how it would be nice to have someone helping me with a sick kid.... but that "someone else" was a blank space... and empty whole - filled by............? Anyone... but *not* automatically filled in by my heart or mind - by El Capitan. That's serious emotional progress.
Woof*&kingHoo. About damn time. lololol
Mind you.... I suspect that that 'empty space' will remain vacant for a long time to come... I'm not exactly garnering gentlemen callers like I do blog readers... wouldn't that be nice? lololol But... that's ok. Just the *idea* of it - the idea of the excitement of even *possibly* meeting someone new is kind of..... exhilarating.
It seems crazy weird to type that. CRAZY weird. I mean.... I haven't kissed *anyone* but El Capitan for over 11 years.... I don't even know what I do. Frankly. What a oddly strange, but exciting moment that will be... when/if it ever happens.
Psstt..... I'll let you in on a little secret: In a way, I'm a bit lucky because instead of being stuck in a bit of a sh*tty marriage that I told myself was great and happy... and being stuck with someone who never felt like my 'partner' (I explain that in The Book) - I get to dream about finding *real* love again.....
Umm.... hello!?!?!?! That's kind of awesome.
Whether it ever happens or not is completely besides the pint.... it's the fact that I get to *Dream* about it and it could (on a very outside/remote/slim chance) actually happen.... it's kind of cool. Plus, I'd much rather live alone with puking kids and puffy eyes from lack of sleep while hope burns in my soul.... than fool myself into believing I was happy while living with someone who would trade me in for.... Yoga Girl.
So tonight, during what little sleep I will get, I will dream and hope and sleep contently in the knowledge that I have two great (albeit somewhat currently barfy) kids who are GREAT... and El Capitan will be sleeping next to a kid who (in my humble opinion) isn't so 'great'... but does love yoga.
Sooo..... coming *very* soon, a complete, total Twilight Tour of all the filming spots in Oregon.... the image to the right is at the tree where Bella first confronts Edward about what he really is.... it's in Oxbow park - and while we were there two deer walked up... may be they were doe... anyhow. It was cool.... and lately, I've been a bit Twilight obsessed.... and I just love this picture of them. :)
Anyhow.... we had a fun day taking a road trip to Southern Oregon - which was about seven hours round trip. I'm pretty lucky that I have two kids that will sit in a car like that - and be pretty happy.
We went to Southern Oregon because lately (again slightly obsessed) with Twilight stuff -I've been working on collecting some of the Twilight Barbies. Okay..... first I should explain.
Growing up, one of The Bubbie's best friends was my Aunt Robbie. My Aunt Robbie was essentially orphaned when her parents died in her early twenties. We were kind of her only family until she later married.
My Aunt Robbie was around a lot when I was younger and we were very close - when I turned 5 she gave me a beautiful blue Barbie case from the 1960's. Inside was a near perfect Barbie and her best friend Midge. It had two plastic blue doors that opened up together and made a closet between the two standing dolls. Inside, on tiny plastic hangers, hung a sweet blue corduroy jumper-dress, an a-line black and white chiffon evening dress and many other outfits.
Each one had a read zipper, or buttons and snaps - and it even had all the shoes, including these pink, fluffy high-heeled slippers that matched a bathrobe and had tiny little round 'powder boxes' complete with soft blue 'puffs' for Barbie to use when she was getting dolled up for a night on the town.
I love it. I love the box. The way it opened up wide, the top swinging open wide with the dolls on side and two giant plastic pockets: a treasure trove of shoes and belts and hats. It was amazing and I would sit for hours and hours dressing and re-dressing Barbie and Midge.
I had other, more contemporary, Barbie's which I played with allt he time. But my most *special* childhood prize, was Barbie, Midge and their giant blue Barbie case, which was old and splitting a little at the joint where it opened and closed. It wasn't the Barbie's or the case, or even the fantastic vintage clothes, it was that is had been important to my Aunt Robbie. It had been her childhood toy and of allll the people she could have given her precious Barbie's to: she chose me.
It's an amazing thing to give a child, the feeling of being *special*. Often, as children, we are singled out in a negative way - we're too loud, not behaving, not 'keeping our hands to our self', or my favorite.... 'not using our inside voice'.
To be singled out for a *good* reason - the one that say's, "You matter to me" - is amazing... and I was blessed to have that feeling from my Aunt and while Malibu Barbie had a run in with the scissors (she lost), and Night & Day Barbie had a some personalized eye-makeup tattoo's with permanent marker..... Barbie and Midge were never harmed in the making of a 5, 6, 7 year-old's 'good time'. Never.
I never brushed their hair, still perfectly formed. I never pulled out the earrings, even though on Barbie they had started to tarnish the plastic a bit, I left them there: in tact. Every time I took them out of their box I was careful not to pull the seams, or lose the pieces, I treasured the dolls, but I also treasured how they made me feel: loved.
I still have the blue Barbie box, complete with dolls and clothes, and I have put them away for The Girl. She's not ready for them yet... but one day she will get to play with them. I will share with her about my Aunt Robbie, for whom she is named, and how wonderful and kind and amazing my Aunt Robbie was. How special it was that she chose me to have her sacred, vintage Barbie collection - and how special The Girl is to be the next little girl to get them.
As my Twilight obsession has grown.... I noticed that the Twilight Barbie's were starting to disappear from the shelves..... and even in my sad financial state - I started to dream of owning them. lolol... silly, stupid, First class First World Problems... but there you have it. Silly girls... silly little girl dreams.....
So, I did what I usually do: hit ebay. But, ebay wasn't cheap enough..... some of the Barbies were already going for three figures! What the heck!?!?!.... so then I started going for Craigslist. There weren't too many listing for Twilight anything in Portland, so I started branching out and looking all around Oregon. Every two or three days I signed on and searched - emailed a few people, but I didn't find anything great.... until I did.
Yesterday I found a listing for a HUGE Twilight collection: Twilight Edward and Bella, New Moon Jacob, Eclipse Victoria and Eclipse ALICE - all in Barbie form. There were also New Moon buttons and magnets, dog tags, and Edward key chain and some posters - and they only wanted $100.00. I emailed them straight way and waited.... and ok - I actually might have prayed a little, too.
Let me preface by saying that I always do that thing Moms do - where they use their birthday money, their gift cards ...to buy stuff for their kids. So much so that my brother will give me a gift card for my birthday and write on the card: DO NOT BUY ANYTHING FOR THE KIDS THIS IS FOR YOU! lololol but I think every Mom does that.... I'm always seeing things they need more than I do.
However, The Bubbie has been holding onto some money that my Tante Louise sent me. Tante Louise is another childhood best friend of The Bubbie's who has held an immensely important place in my life - and a few months ago she sent me some money for some photos I took and The Bubbie held the money for "something special" for me. I used most of the money to pay bills and health insurance and whatnot... but The Bubbie held a little back for when I found that something special that I just *had* to have.
I couldn't believe my luck when they emailed me back and I made plans to drive three hours South to buy the collection.... oh, and I dragged my brother with me because I didn't want to drive there and accidentally wind up living in someone's basement for several months eventually becoming their 'skin suit'.
It was a man who called... so even though I was worried he would back out of selling the collection, I dared to ask.... "Where did you get all this?"
There was a pause and then he said......"Well, umm..... it was my wife's collection... but she left for someone else and took everything she wanted... like - everything. She told me throw out the rest and I found this box... so I thought may be I could sell them instead."
I asked him... against my better Twilight judgement lolol - "does she know you're selling them?"
"Yup", he replied, "she said she doesn't need them anymore."
Oh.... so she's DUMB AND she's a cheater..... Edward and Jacob are worth about $30 together, Bella is worth $40, Victoria is worth $40 but Alice..... ALICE is a collectors item. Alice is worth *at least* $100, but frequently goes for $150 - $200 on eBay.
New - each doll was $24.99 each, and as they were *all* still new in their boxes, this was an *amazing* deal... I literally couldn't drive there fast enough - hoping that the man didn't go online to discover the eBay value of Alice - and then feeling bad at the same time that I knew I was 'under-paying' him for them. The thing is, I don't want to sell them or flip them.... I was to collect them and keep them, for The Girl.
Twilight, in a nerdy (but not at all crazy-cat-lady-kind-of-way) has *really* helped me through this hard chapter of our lives.... being able to collect a piece of that to pass on to The Girl (who will face heartbreak of her own) - AND it adds to the all important Barbie collection from Aunt Robbie - OH - and it's paid for by Tante Louise.... phew. That's a mouthful... and it's a wonderful thing to have for The Girl.
So we drove there, listening to music and talking the whole way. We arrived to buy the Twilight Barbie's - and the guy was really nice.... and i noticed his house seemed a bit picked over. :(
Then we turned around and drove back over Mt. Hood, this time singing Christmas songs - which seemed appropriate because the tree's were white with frost and a thick fog hung around the road - which was also *very* Twilight... lololol
We got home and I was so excited to show the kids - The Girl was especially excited - she loves Victoria and her red hair.... and she saying, "Pretty Mommy's Twilight.... no touching brother."
They learn so quickly.... lololol
We snuggled on the couch, watched a movie and right about the time I was thinking how wonderful today had been - how great it was to snuggle under the blanket and watch a movie and relax.... how blessed I am to have such two sweet, sweet babies........
The Girl sat up and puked everywhere.
sigh. oh well... it's still a perfect day, even it if was laced with brink pink, smelly vomit.... because kids who puke and don't feel well just want to snuggle more.... which is exactly what we did. (While Alice, Jacob, Edward, Bell and Victoria all watched from a safe distance at their place on the upper shelf.... thank f*&k I put those away *just* before the projectile started..... silver lining!!!!!)
Life is getting a little bit busier, leading up the book signing.... are *you* coming? lol
I'm pretty stoked about it - I'm not sure how many people are going to be there, in fact... I worry that it'll just be me, my family and a few friends... but after having my fat ass strewn across the internet for people to prey upon.... it certainly won't be the most embarrassing thing that's happened to me this year. lololol
I have a TV interview on Tuesday morning - and I was talking to the Producer on Friday afternoon and she saying that she really liked The Blog. She said she reads a lot of blogs, and mine sticks out in her mind - so much so, she's been coming back to read more outside work. (hi there!) I was kind of excited to hear that.... it's hard to know where I stand. I can see my progress (from the first blog post) - and I'm proud of that, but I still don't really feel like a 'blogger' - so it's hard to know how I'm doing compared to others. I'm looking forward to doing their show on Tuesday - it's really humbling that they asked.
On that note..... I can't remember who I was talking to the other day, but they said something like, "Oh well, this has all worked out so well for you! You must be loving all this attention and the media and The Book?"I am very proud of The Book.... but, I would trade it all in and go back to February 1st of last year and put a stop to all of this if I could.... if for no other reason: for my children.
Mind you.... now that's I'm here, I suppose it's not a crime to enjoy just a *tiny* bit of this vodka I've been making... right? lolololol
So, Friday I was busy with working with producers and whatnot. (kind of fun to say that!) - and then we had to go to the gym... even though I was tired and didn't want to. Then I took the kids to Red Robin where shakes and smoothies and birthday Sundae's were had by allll!!!!!!!1.... except for me - no need to have to go *another* 5 miles at the gym.
The Boy was super excited about it being his birthday weekend - it's odd that he's keenly aware of his own aging. He said to me, "Mom... you know, I miss being a baby.... you held me all the time and I didn't have to share or go to school and stuff."
He cracks me up.
Saturday was supposed to be "my" day with the children, because I get their birthdays in our parenting plan. I felt like, since *I* was the one who actually birthed them... then I get to spend that day with them. So... I *could* have kept them ... kept The Boy - all to myself..... but I knew that in his heart, he would want to see his Dad on his birthday, too.
However, he also wanted to "go somewhere special".... so I arranged for El Capitan to come and take them for breakfast - and I went to the gym (and did 15 miles... thank you very much... on the bike that is) - and then I headed off to The Oregon Coast.
We had a great time going to Ecola State Park - and taking the 3 mile hike to the beach. It was very lush and muddy and The Boy spent a good bit of time teaching me a few things he learned in Cub Scouts... how cute is that? Oh... and he read me the sign about Cougars in the area - and he kept calling them Kruegers.... as in Freddy Kreuger. That had me almost p*ssing my pants.
We'd be walking along and he'd say...."Remember to watch for Kreugers Mom........"
Then we drove to Cannon Beach and the kids played in the sand.... which is really crazy because we drove through snow and ice to get there - but once we were there it was nearly 50 and both my kids wanted to put on suits and get in the water.... Oregon weather is crazy.
So we dug in the sand and took a few pictures and the sun was shining..... we were: living.
It was kind of amazing, if I'm being honest... and you can see the picture proof above! lolol
Then we braved the drive home through the icey roads just in time for birthday dinner with family - and the highlight of the night was the candles on The Boy's cake that kept re-lighting themselves over and over every time he blew them out. He was out of his mind about that..... The Girl thought it was the funniest thing she'd ever seen.
It was a really great night..... which, kind of surprised me. It wasn't until Sunday that I thought about how it had been a 'first' and it slipped right past me.... the "First" birthday as a divorced family.
I was glad... and a little bit proud - that it hadn't occurred to me until the next day..... I think that that means that I'm getting *past* this finally..... right?
It wasn't until the moment passed that I noticed how important it was.... I just faced it, made the right choice (about sharing the day) - and planned a great day for us. I did allll the things I was supposed to do as My Kid's Mom - and the hurt feelings of the Ex-Wife were nowhere to be found.... except as an after thought the next morning.
I kind took that as a bit of an unconscious - albeit HUGE - step forward for me... and by associated, for the three of us. It's been really *hard* to get to this place where I don't have to think as much about *how* to handle things... now I'm just kind of 'handling' them without it making my stomach hurt, or making me cry in the bathroom with the door shut and the fan on.
That's pretty big.......
Today we hung around and then I went to the gym... even though I really didn't want to. lolol... I was slogging away on mile 8 - thinking about how much my calves were hurting, when I heard a thumping behind me. I turned and saw an older lady trapped in her elliptical.
Somehow, she had gotten off track, lost her footing and wound up with her foot and leg twisted and in between the two 'feet' of the elliptical. She had badly hurt her shoulder (landing pretty much on her shoulder and back) - and she was desperately fearful that her ankle would snap in the machine. A few minutes later another man on a bike saw us on the ground and ran over - then we lifted her up and over the machine to un-tangle her ankle.
I've looked at those ellipticals a few times, I tried it once, and quickly saw that my size and lack of coordination wasn't going to lead me anywhere but on my a$$ in no short order, so I've kept to the bike and the treadmill.... and even when it's hard and it hurts: i just keep going.
After we helped the lady get help from the people who work at the gym - instead of quitting and heading to the hot tub..... I got back on the bike and did four more miles. The "old" me would have used that intermission as an excuse to throw in the towel... but the "new" me, she's more resolved and she stayed the course. Which again... I didn't think about until *after* I was showered and driving home.
Two big steps for me in one weekend... I'll take them.... and, I'll learn from the lady who fell and stick to what I know, stick to what is safe - and I'll just keep moving forward.....
Mind you....... this surely has to be proof that exercise can be bad for you and I should throw in the towel and saddled up to a giant box of donuts... right? ... right!?!?!
Probably not. damn.