a hard talk w/doll…


If you’ve been a long time reader of this blog, then you know, when the doll was younger, she would wait until we were alone in the car going somewhere, before she would ask me her most important questions. Since she’s gotten older, those car questions have almost dropped completely, favoring to ask me at home, when no one is around. But this past weekend, the two of us drove to Cincinnati, Ohio on Friday and enjoyed having some “girl” time, away from her brother and father.

“I think I’m going to be a designated driver when I’m older…” She began, “because I don’t care for the taste of beer”. She explained. “Ah, but what about other forms of alcohol?” I asked. “Well not that I’ve tried any really well except for communion wine, but…” She replied before I interrupted. “Communion wine doesn’t count,” I said. “Why? I mean it tastes good,” she remarked. “Because you don’t drink more than one sip/per mass,” I replied. Nodding her head in agreement she said, “Well I still think, if I’m going to drink, it will be wine”

Looking over at her briefly I added, “Well, I wish I could drink wine. Depending on which kind, I either get really bad headaches or want to fall asleep”. “I just don’t see myself ever drinking beer”. She replied, sheepishly perhaps trying to distinguish the difference between us. “Well, what about other kinds of liquor? What’s going to prevent you from drinking those?” I asked. “Do you like hard liquor?” She asked. “Depends… I like rum and sometimes some whiskey. But I don’t drink either regularly. More like on special occasions, like when your dad and I were on vacation or at a wedding”. I explained. “But doll, as much as you dislike the taste of beer right now when you get to high school, and college, you’ll feel pressured to drink beer-primarily because it’s relatively inexpensive. The majority of parties you attend will offer kegs of beer and you might change your mind about the taste”.

“What are you telling me, mom, that you expect me to begin drinking in high school?” She asked. “No. What I’m telling you is that you will feel pressured to drink; take a sip, experiment. You can tell me today that you will never take a drink in High School, but I do not wear rose colored glasses.”  She didn’t really respond for a few moments, almost confused by what I said. To clarify, I said, “Doll, both your dad and I learned how to drink beer and wine in high school”. She turned and looked at me, slowly nodding the information into place.

Then I went into the meat of the issue…

“A few years back, there was this boy who attended Ottawa Hills, HS, a senior; who was killed in a drunk driving accident. He was driving home from a high school party drunk, was behind the wheel and rolled his car off the road and died. His parents and siblings are devastated by his death. Drinking in high school is common, because peer pressure makes it so easy. But, deciding not to allow peer pressure to bully you into doing so is huge!! Yet easier said than done.”

“Mom, if I came home drunk after a party in high school would you be upset?” She asked. “Yes. Because you just told me you would be the designated driver….”I began and was interrupted. “No, I mean, if someone else was driving…” I would understand and be upset because you know better. Then you would be grounded and forced to hear me talk endlessly about the dangers of drinking at your age” I said and smiled. “Honestly doll, I don’t know how I will respond. What I can tell you today is, your dad and I love you so much, losing you to an alcohol related issue would just about kill us. Simply because it’s preventable.”

Tired of our little talk, she put her headphones back in her ears and pretended to ignore me. I meanwhile sent off a silent prayer hoping she’ll understand when the situation arises someday in the (hopefully) distant future.

something old… something borrowed…


A few weeks back, if you recall, the doll cleaned out her bedroom saying goodbye to her younger years and hello to the teenaged ones by packing up all her old stuffed animals to be donated to our school/church festival in June. In addition, the doll approached me and asked, “Mom, would you be mad if I gave away the American Girl doll you gave me?” Looking back at her I said, “Well considering how expensive that doll was…” I began, but then read the look on my daughter’s face and changed course. “I don’t care. Do you have someone in mind?” “How about little Kaylee?” She suggested. Kaylee is her two-year-old second cousin”. “If you want to. But let me ask her mom first…” I said and sent my niece a text. Later that weekend we drove over and presented little Kaylee with “Amber” with whom she promptly renamed Kaylee and ran and disappeared.

“I’m curious doll, why didn’t you want to keep the doll?” My niece asked. The doll sheepishly looked at the floor before answering, “Well in all honesty, she still creeps me out…” Which prompted my niece to look from her to me for clarification. I smiled and as I began to tell the story behind the story, the doll lifted her hands to cover her ears in embarrassment and walked off to “play” with Kaylee and her new doll.


In August of 2010, the first year I wrote the blog, I published a two-part blog called possession is 9/10 of the law part one, and possession, part two. which explained why the doll was creeped out by that doll. I’m going to post links to those two stories here if you’re interested in reading the back story. If not, suffice to say, kids wild imaginations are great fuel for the fodder, especially for a mom who writes blogs…


Needless to say, the doll hasn’t missed “Amber” and his happy she made her cousin happy. I’m happy someone is playing with the most expensive doll I’ve ever purchased and it’s not cluttering up my house. In addition I’ve been told through the grapevine, Kaylee is very happy with baby Kaylee too.

Oh happy day!

no pain no gain….


The Yin and the Yang. Karma, insult to injury, cause, and effect: apt descriptions of my day yesterday…

I thought I was having a great day yesterday. While sore from the prior day’s workout regimen, I nonetheless pushed through and completed the workout designated for the day. All the while chanting to myself, “I AM STRONGER THAN MY EXCUSES!!” which coincidently sounded an awful lot like “I AM WOMAN! HEAR ME ROAR!!” in my head, but I digress.  Somewhere, however, throughout the day, my legs began to tighten making walking, bending down and even standing up from a seated position more and more difficult to do. By mid-day, I  began to notice, life was a cruel joke, as everything I touched fell to the ground, meaning, I’d have to bend down to pick the darn things up; inducing even more pain.

I wondered why my body had forsaken me.

But then I remembered the oft said exercise mission statement:

No pain no gain, right?

In addition, the day was still young. Something good could happen…

Mary Alice and I went shopping out to one of those mega superstores across town,  so I could get her some extra exercise walking up and down the aisles pushing the cart. I decided while there, I’d buy a 12pk of beer. At the checkout, the cashier paused and looked me over. “I already swiped my card…” I said believing that’s why she was looking so intently at me. “I know, but, I need to see your ID,” She said. “What? Seriously?” I replied with an incredulous look on my face. “If you don’t mind. I mean if I can’t tell, it’s always better to ask than get caught not…” She explained. “No, I don’t mind!” I said almost too happy, and then rooted around in my wallet looking for my license. When all was said and done, I placed the beer on the bottom of the cart and together, Mary Alice and I pushed the cart to the car.

My first order of business, when we reached the car was to have Mary Alice “help” me by taking my purse and sitting in the front seat. This way I could unload the cart quickly. Once she was safely in my car, still kind of high from being carded, I unloaded the cart, closed the hatch on the car, pushed the cart into the cart corral, climbed in my car and drove away. “Can you believe that Mary Alice?” I began, “They asked for my identification to buy beer. Makes this day that much better, wouldn’t you say?” “They did? You gotta me kidding me!” she replied and we both laughed.

On our way back to Mary Alice’s, I stopped the car at my house, to unload the groceries for the kids to put away. But when I opened the back hatch, there was one giant glaring omission. No beer. “Huh?” I thought to myself before taking a gander into the back seat. Again, nothing, nada, zip. “What the…?” I thought to myself before realizing. due to my very sore legs and my aversion to bending down yesterday afternoon, in addition to my giddy high mood at having been carded,  I must have accidently left the beer on the bottom rack of the cart.

“You gotta be kidding me….” I said to no one in particular. “Lot’s of pain with no trade off gain” I whimpered.

Well hopefully, while I’m out ten bucks, I hope whoever found the beer kept it, but the odds are they did not or they turned it back in–which is just really really sad.

Mean mommy goes to a dance…


If you recall, last week the doll was sick and unable to attend a school dance. I had volunteered to be one of the parent chaperones and decided to go ahead and honor my commitment while the doll wallowed in self-pity at home. “Doll, I made a commitment….” I said to her. “I know. But you have to admit it’s weird that my mom is going to a 7th/8th-grade dance and I’m not”. She replied. “I’ll tell you what…if I get there and they don’t need me, then I’ll come back home, okay?” She nodded her head before adding, “Do me a favor and tell everyone I’m in the hospital”. “Yeah, like I would be at a school dance while you were “dying” in the hospital” I replied to my dramatic girl. Smiling back at me, she said, “Dad’s with me”.  “Is this to make me look bad or for them to feel sorry for you?” I asked. “Maybe a little of both…” She replied. Thankfully before I left the house she stopped me and said, “You know I was joking right? Please don’t tell anyone I’m in the hospital”. Looking back I replied, “Well at least I know you’re feeling better–your sense of humor has returned.

When I arrived at the dance I was inundated with questions from her friends, “Is she coming? Is she okay? I really wish she had come. Will she be in school next week?” One little girl told me she was surprised the doll hadn’t fought harder to come, considering it was Kellin’s birthday. “Who’s Kellin?” I wondered. One parent looked at me and said, “Let me get this straight, your daughter is home sick, yet you’re still here to chaperone?” Smiling back I said, “Well, I have a couple of reasons to be here… First of all I made a commitment to chaperone and the doll has been fever free for most of the day today.” “Not me, if my daughter was sick I’d have a get out of jail free card…” the parent said. “Well, the other reason is more for me,” I said and received a curious look in return. “Two simple words” I began and then held up my right index and middle finger, to form the number two, illustrating the two words as I said them, “Adult Conversation”.

“Oh…” The parent replied immediately recognizing just how important adult conversation is in all of our lives. “Yes. I spent today with Mrs. K who repeatedly asked me what day today is or tells me the same story over and over again. Actually carrying a conversation with someone that has a beginning, middle and end makes so much difference. In addition, with the doll sick, we’ve been hanging pretty close to home. God knows I love my husband, but I need some variety in my life, conversation wise.” The other parent laughed and agreed. “I called Mary and begged her to help tonight, just so I could have someone to talk to while here”. “Yes,  adult conversation is key to keeping mom’s sane.” I laughed.

After an hour and a half of laughing, talking and a little chaperoning, I said my goodbyes and walked on home. The doll met me at the door, wanting to know all that had happened. After giving her the highlights, she decided she wanted to talk a little more about being thirteen and the “problems” of 7th grade, so we did. “By the way, Nicole was surprised you didn’t fight harder to come and celebrate Kellin’s birthday. Who is Kellin?” I asked.

Giving me the “You’re sooo cluelessly dumb” look she replied quietly, “Lead singer from Sleeping with Sirens Mom”. “Oh, the screaming dude…?” I asked and received an eye roll in return. I began to laugh and said, “Yep, I can tell you feel better…” Which resulted in another eye roll, which made me laugh harder.

Finders fee….


I’ve been determined as of late, to clean my house. That does not mean, however, that I’ve succeeded. After all, I still have not found where I hid my purse or checkbook before we left for Punta Cana. But I digress. On Sunday, the hubby and I arose early and went for a long walk (meant to be 2.2 miles but turned into 4.2 after a couple of wrong turns here and there) and I reflected on numerous things… The people of Nepal, the friends I know who are struggling, the everyday issues we all face and where the heck did I put that checkbook and purse? By the time we returned home, I was ready to get busy.

The hubby and I went on a scavenger hunt of sorts, looking for every piece of failed electronic components we’ve ever owned but didn’t know how to throw out. Two hours later, we collected two old computers with missing hard drives, three monitors, three VCRs, a PlayStation 2 and Nintendo game system, a subwoofer with integrated speakers, a Techinics component tuner among many other small devices; to be recycled at an area grocery store.

What was cool about this was all the other cool stuff we found… A Christmas card, a random piece of paper, a thank you, letter list and a child’s money card from our trip there in 2010. You may not find these particularly important and they really aren’t except for the memories they evoke.

Not a bad Finder’s fee if you ask me…

Though, I still haven’t found my checkbook or purse.

A Xmas card from my friend Twitter friend Sami in TX

A Xmas card from my twitter friend Sami, whom I met “in person” while in LA last August

The long list of "Thank Yous" needed from our wedding. Thankfully they were all checked off.

The long list of “Thank Yous” needed from our wedding. Thankfully they were all checked off.




My mom's handwriting looking for someone's address.

My mom’s handwriting looking for someone’s address.

Yes doll, we did take you to Disney World.

Yes doll, we did take you to Disney World.For all the cleaning, these a pretty nice finder’s fee.

Yep, it’s Monday, sigh…


As I mentioned in Friday’s blog, the doll attended school on Monday and then didn’t go back for the week. This morning before leaving she said, “On one hand I’m excited to go back and see my friends, but on the other, it is school…” I smiled and replied, and you’ll have four days of homework to make up”. “Wow, jeez mom, way to really make Monday worse than it already is…” She replied which I said in return, “Your welcome!”


I overheard my hubby and son this morning arguing. Actually that’s not true. I overheard my hubby complaining to himself about the boy this morning which pulled me from my slumber. The old story holds true, boys are gross. My boy decided twenty minutes to shower and dress prior to school was not enough time, so chose to dress. The hubby complained to him but did not force the issue. Enter MOM.

“Bay get up here and into the shower now!” I said through heavy-lidded eyes. “OH, now you’ve done it!” My hubby remarked loudly. “I don’t have time”. The boy replied. “GET YOUR ___ up here right now!” I shouted. “Mom, there isn’t enough time and I’m already dressed for the day.” He said trying not to get angry that his parents weren’t letting him off the hook. “Listen, mister, even if you’re going to be an hour late, you ARE taking a shower right this minute. Get in, rinse, wash the nasty bits, hair and face, rinse off, get out and go to school” I said pointedly.

Unhappily he did what I asked though not without some grousing. In the meantime, I went back to bed for a few more minutes of shut-eye.  Five minutes later he emerged from the shower, complaining, but clean. He dressed, grabbed his stuff and left for school with his father. I in turn got up as well, making sure the doll was getting dressed for school. When my hubby returned fifteen minutes later I complained, “Why am I always the bad guy? Why do you make me the bitch to get him to do these things? Step up man!”

Looking back at me he replied, “I did. Why do you think I woke you up?”


sick of being sick…


The doll has had a difficult time staying healthy this Spring. In late March, she went to the doctor for fatigue and after taking several medical tests, they determined she was 13. Whoa, really? Who would have guessed? Thinking back on the equation, I remembered being put on Iron for fatigue when was her age. So like mother like daughter, she now takes iron pills to try and level out her imbalance. Two weeks ago she had a gastrointestinal 24-hour bug that wiped her out for two days, but she recovered. Then on Tuesday of this week, she came down with another issue, a high-grade fever. Believe me when I tell you, she (along with the rest of us) is not a happy camper.

In tears last night she asked, “Why is this happening to me? Why am I getting sick all the time?” How do I answer what I do not know? “Doll, Spring is in full bloom…this could be allergies or any number of different things” I tried to console. “Do you think I’ll be able to make it to the dance Friday?” She asked. “I know it sounds stupid! But my friends and I have been planning this for a while…” She explained while wiping away her tears. “Doll, we’ll have to play this by ear…” I explained.

Yesterday her fever finally broke for good. Unfortunately, what’s left is a fatigued girl who still looks “messed” around. This morning I put an offer on the table. “You’re fever free. Do you want to go to school? Get up, move around, see how you feel.” Then left to take the boy to school. I arrived home in plenty of time to spare but found the doll wrapped in a blanket on the couch, still wearing her pajamas.”Mom, I have an idea…? She began, “Maybe I could go back after lunch…?” She offered. “Doll…” I said shaking my head. “Mom, do you think they’ll let me go to the dance since I’m fever free?” She asked in a hopeful voice”. “I can ask….but don’t get your hopes up…” I replied.

I emailed the teacher in charge and asked what to do and she replied, “I’d leave her at home”. Drat! “Doll, your teacher said no,” I said into the phone receiver. “Okay,” She replied quietly. “I’m sorry baby. Better that you feel 100% than spread this to any of your classmates…” I said trying to reason with her sensibility side. “Whatever” she replied before hanging up the phone.


Home for lunch, you can tell she’s feeling better; her sense of humor has returned as has her bitchiness. “Doll I’m sorry about the dance…” I offered again. “It’s okay. It’s just a STUPID dance anyway”. She said. I smiled back at her and agreed. “Yes, one dance in a long line of dances ahead in your future…” I remarked. “Mom, do you mind…?” She asked, Having had enough about the subject altogether. “Oh, yeah, sure. Sorry” I replied, before changing subjects and making us lunch.

Contrary to what she’s projecting to the world, she’s very disappointed and I can’t say as I blame her.