Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Five Reasons I'M Ready For The Elections To Be Over . . .

1.  ALL OF THE POLITICAL ADS THAT ARE ON EVERY 2 SECONDS.  I am SO sick of those STUPID ads, I can’t even tell you.  Every time I turn on the television there’s a different ad.  Which, by the way, I either mute or just turn off completely.  Did I mention I’m SICK of them?

2.  ELECTION NEWS TRUMPS EVERY OTHER TYPE OF NEWS.  Stock market crashed?  Let’s talk about how it’s related to the election.  Gas prices down?  That’s related to the election, of course.  Michelle can’t get her flippin’ car fixed?  Well that’s OBVIOUSLY Obama’s fault!  Now she stubbed her big toe?  Well surely THAT must be Romney’s fault!  Seriously?  Not EVERYTHING has to do with the candidates.  Stop talking about them in relation to EVERY SINGLE TOPIC!

3.  I’M TIRED OF ALL OF THE NEGATIVITY.  I’ve spent the last 13+ years trying to teach my children, “If you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all.”  They’re 13, 10, and 5.  And they’ve pretty much gotten it down.  If THEY can do it, why can’t all of these adults figure it out?  Instead of telling us WHY we should vote for them, they’re too busy telling us why we SHOULDN’T vote for the other guy.  And I, for one, am tired of it!

4.  ALL THE POLITICAL POSTS ON FACEBOOK.  Admittedly, I’m “friends” with some people on Facebook that I don’t know really well; we all are.  But I am also friends with people that I am ACTUALLY friends with and know very well.  And most of my friends I like very much.  But if I see one more political post, I think I’m going to lose what’s left of my mind.  Here’s a hint:  You are NOT going to change my opinion on who I am voting for by telling me why my choice is wrong.  The only opinion you’re really affecting is my opinion of YOU, if you keep spending all your time telling me why MY opinion is wrong.  Just sayin’!

5.  RUDE, RUDE, RUDE.  I watched a little of the debates.  But I could only watch them for a few minutes at a time because I kept getting angrier and angrier with every minute.  I can’t get over how RUDE they were to each other.  BOTH CANDIDATES.  It seems like they were vying to see who could be the rudest!  UN-FREAKIN’-BELIEVABLE!  If my kids talked like that to other people, they’d be grounded for weeks!  And yet, here we have these supposed adults, talking like that on national television for millions of people to hear.  And they don’t seem to think there’s anything wrong with it.  Are you KIDDING me?!  How can you talk like that and not see it as a problem?  I guarantee you if their KIDS were caught talking like that, they’d have a problem with it!  And yet, for them, it’s okay.  Yeah, THAT’S the kind of person we need running our country!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Five Things I Learned While Living In China . . .

Many of you know that we lived in China for a year.  I’ve seen a lot of “things I learned” articles lately, so I thought I’d do one on China.  I actually learned MORE than five things, but I think these are the most IMPORTANT five things I learned.

1.  WE ARE VERY SPOILED.  That probably goes without saying.  But until you live in another country and you see how poor most of the people there are, you don’t realize just how lucky WE are.  Most people there live in extremely poor conditions.  It’s nothing to see whole families living in a very small house.  And by family I mean, grandma and grandpa, mom and dad, kids and sometimes other relatives as well.  Plus they don’t live in the houses we’re used to.  It’s mostly just 1 or 2 rooms.  And they work for very cheap.  You can get someone to cook, clean, and babysit 40 hours a week for $400-$1000 A MONTH, and many times those people, known as Ayi, are the highest paid member of their family!  Here we’re always so busy keeping up with our neighbors, that I don’t think we take the time to appreciate all of the amazing things we have in our lives.

2.  I’M A LOT STRONGER THAN I THOUGHT I WAS.  You see, I was TERRIFIED about moving to another country.  Yeah, it may have only been for a year, but it was still far away from everyone and everything I’ve ever known.  I didn’t know if I could do it.  I honestly thought I COULDN’T do it.  But guess what?  I did.  I made it.  I survived.  And I think it made me a better person.  It also made me realize that I AM stronger than I thought I was.
3.  YOU DO WHAT YOU HAVE TO DO FOR YOUR FAMILY.  I can’t tell you the number of people that told me, “I don’t know how you did it.  I couldn’t.”  But I don’t think that’s true.  I think you do what you have to do for your family.  We knew this would be a good thing for us, so while it WASN’T easy, I knew it was something that I HAD do because it was the right thing for us.  Now, that being said, I DO NOT WANT TO DO IT AGAIN!  ;) 

4.  YOU CAN FIND GOOD PEOPLE EVERYWHERE YOU GO.  YOU JUST HAVE TO BE OPEN TO MAKING NEW FRIENDS.  The thing that terrified me the most about moving was not having any of my friends and family that I rely on daily.  And since we were only going to be there for one year, I didn’t think I’d be able to make new friends.  But guess what?  I did.  We met some AMAZING people.  The very first person I met was the Director at the kids’ school.  I’d been talking to her through email for a month before we moved there, and when I met her in person, she was even more heartwarming and comforting than I could have imagined.  Jason had this PHENOMENAL teacher that not only took care of him, but in a way, she also took care of me.  The second week we were there we met some neighbors on the 7th floor.  Their son was in 5th grade like Jason.  She became my confidant.  I honestly don’t know if I would have survived without her.  Whenever I was having a bad day, she was there to listen to me.  She’d come up or I’d go down and we’d visit and have lunch or coffee at least once or twice a week.  We’d go out for lunch or shopping on a weekly basis.  When Mom and Dad came in they let us use their driver to pick them up from the airport.  They took the kids to school almost daily for us.  She was definitely my closest friend and confidant while I was there.  I also met another person through Jason.  Her son was one of his friends from class.  She and I hit it off pretty well and had some good times together.  I met another friend while grading papers for Jason’s class.  She was grading papers in the class across from me, so we spent every Tuesday morning together, and most days we’d go out to lunch or shopping after we were finished at school.  The point is, I never would have met these amazing people if I hadn’t taken the opportunity to talk to the people in the elevator, the mother’s at school, or the teachers and staff in the hallway.

5.  SOMETIMES WHAT SEEMS LIKE A BAD THING, CAN ACTUALLY BE A GOOD THING.  Like I said before, I was TOTALLY freaked about moving to China.  And I didn’t want to go.  But I never said no.  If I had been really adamant about not going, we might not have gone.  And I/WE would have missed so much.  Yeah, it was a hard year in a lot of ways.  But it was also a great year in even more ways.  We made some awesome friends, saw some amazing sights, visited places most people never have the opportunity to see, grew closer as a family, and basically had a once in a lifetime experience.  It’s one I’ll never regret, and I’m so thankful we had that opportunity.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Halloween Postcard

Crossroads . . .

I met a friend of mine for lunch last week.  He used to be a priest.  In fact, he's the priest that married us and he was the priest at the Newman Center when I was in college.  He left the priesthood many years ago, but he'll always be Fr. Greg to me, and he's still the one I think of when I need spiritual counseling.  Like now.  I haven't been going to church.  Like, for a LONG time.  I don't really miss the "church" part of it, but I feel like I'm missing the "connection" part of it, and I don't know where to go or what to do.  

I was raised Catholic.  And I'm sure I'll always be Catholic.  But there are a lot of things about the Catholic Church that I question.  So that makes me wonder if I'm a TRUE Catholic.  And they're not little things either.  Some of them are HUGE discrepancies.  For example?  I don't believe in Penance.  I know, weird huh?  That's kind of one of the fundamentals of Catholicism.  But nope.  Don't believe in it.  Don't like it.  Don't relate to it.  Never really have.  In my opinion, if I want to confess, I can just go straight to the source.  You know, God.  The MAIN man!  :)  

When I was in High School we used to go on retreats every year at one of the local Seminaries.  During the retreat we would go to the chapel for Penance.  So my Freshman year I'm supposed to go in there and do something that I don't believe in.  I remember walking up to the priest and telling him that I have a REALLY hard time with Penance.  NOT because I don't do anything wrong.  NOT because I don't trust him or the other priests.  NOT because I'm perfect and have nothing to confess.  But because I just don't believe in it.  Like FUNDAMENTALLY don't believe in it.  I just don't.  Never have, never will.  So I told him that.  And he was GREAT!  He said, 'well then how about if we just talk?'  So that's what we did.  We talked about school, retreat, things like that.  And every year after that, for the next 3 years, I would go up and talk to the same priest.  And that's what we'd do.  We'd talk.  He never made me feel like I was a bad person for not agreeing with Penance.  He never tried to talk me into changing my opinion.  He never judged me for feeling the way I feel.  He just talked to me, and let me talk to him.  So basically, I haven't been to Penance since I was in the 8th grade.  Growing up in Catholic Schools we used to go a few times a year.  I remember sitting there making up things to tell the priest.  Did I mention, I have a HUGE problem with Penance.  And it's not like it's something that just happened.  I've had a problem with it since I was about 12 years old.  

Again, BIG part of the Catholic Faith.  And I don't believe in it.  So does that mean I'm not really Catholic?  Does that mean I SHOULDN'T be Catholic?  That I don't DESERVE to be Catholic?  WHAT does it mean?  I don't know.  So I went to someone I trust to get some advice and some direction.  Someone that I knew wouldn't try to influence me one way or the other.  Someone that would listen to me talk and give me some advice on what to do next.   Like I said before, I've always been Catholic, and I'm sure I'll always BE Catholic.  But maybe questioning my religion isn't a BAD thing.  Maybe during all of this questioning it will strengthen my faith and my religion.  And then again, maybe it won't.  Maybe I'll decide that while I still have my faith, and I'll always have my faith, maybe it's my RELIGION that I need to change.  Like I said, I don't know WHAT I need, but I know I need something. 

So we talked about the different steps to take and where to begin.  For one thing, I don't really like the church I'm currently in.  I feel very out of place there.  My thing is that I'm very middle class.  I've always BEEN middle class.  I'll always BE middle class.  And I'm okay with that.  But the problem is, most of the people at my current church are NOT middle class.  They're mostly Upper Class, or Upper Upper Class.  So I feel very uncomfortable there.  Like I'm not wearing the right shoes, or the right clothes, or I'm not good enough because my kids aren't in school there.  It's hard to pay attention during mass when I'm feeling uncomfortable the whole time I'm there.  So the first step we decided I need to take is to try a different church.  There is a church, fairly close to me, called Epiphany.  Epiphany is an all glass church in the woods.  So while you're in church, you are experiencing the outdoors.  It's a BEAUTIFUL place.  And very comforting.  Also, as I said before, some of my views are very different from the typical Catholic Church.  And according to some friends of mine, Epiphany is a more liberal version of most of the Catholic Churches.  So maybe it'll be better for me.  Who knows.  But I know before I start looking at OTHER religions, I need to exhaust every possible measure to find something for me in MY religion.  So that's where I'm starting.  I hope to go there this weekend.  Wish me luck.  I think I'm going to need it.  What about you?  Have you ever questioned your religion?  If so, what was the outcome?  Do you think I should do something different than what my current plan is?  What did YOU do?

Wordless Wednesday . . .

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Andrew And Basketball . . .

Andrew begged and begged us to let him try out for basketball.  We tried putting him off as long as we could because we didn't want him to get upset if something happened.  But he kept asking, so we finally gave in.  They've had tryouts the last few weeks and at the last tryout, they assigned the teams.  Well guess what?  He's on the C Team.  The lowest team.  And the look on his face when he walked over to me after they assigned the teams just broke my heart.  THAT'S why we didn't want him trying out.  We didn't want him to get upset.  You see, Andrew is not very athletic.  As much as he likes watching and playing sports, he'll never be great at them.  He's a brain.  He's VERY smart.  He's good at SCHOOL.  But not at sports.  And yet, he still wants to play.  

So that night, and again the next morning, he's talking to me about how bad he is at sports, everyone else is always better than him, and he doesn't want to be on the lowest team.  I explained to him that if he was on one of the higher teams he'd probably never get to play OR practice, because there are so many kids on those teams.  By being on THIS team, he'll get to practice at every practice, and likely play most of every game.  He wants to get better, and sitting on the bench isn't going to help him get better.  Actually getting out there and PLAYING and practicing is what's going to make him better.  He actually sat on the floor and cried the next morning because of the team he was on.  THAT'S why we didn't want him to try out.  So I told him all of the same things again.  He told me he'll be okay, he just has to get used to it.  And that's Andrew.  He can adjust to most things, but he DOES have to have the time to get used to it.  That morning, right before he got on the bus he looked at me and said, "mommy, I'm going to be okay."  Then he got on the bus.  When I was telling the story to someone he said, 'so not only do you get HIM, but he gets YOU too.'  I had never seen it that way, but he's right.  Andrew has always been tuned into me and how I'm feeling.  I think he told me that because he didn't want me worrying about him while he was at school.  And you know what?  I really didn't.  But I WOULD have, if he hadn't said that.  So yeah, I guess he DOES get me, huh?!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Wordless Wednesday . . .

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Jason The Actor . . . .

Jason is in Drama Club this year.  The play they are doing is Aladdin Junior.  And he got the lead role!  I'm so proud of him.  My son, the actor.  It just started, so I don't know a lot of the details yet, but the play is sometime in February, so at least he'll have awhile to learn his lines and his songs.  He seems pretty excited about it, and I'm excited for him.  It's something new he's never really done before.  He had a small role in a play in China, but this is the biggest role he's ever had.  I'm really proud of him.  I can't wait to see it.  

I'll make sure to videotape it, of course it's not until February, so it'll be awhile!  :)

Homecoming Pics Day 2 . . .

The next day we got up, went to breakfast, and then went to the Parade.  The kids always have a good time at the parade watching the floats and getting candy.
 What A Bunch Of Hoodlums!
 Goofy Kids!
 At Least They're Having Fun
 Is This Parade EVER Going To Start?
 Still Waiting Patiently
 Aren't They Cute?
Homecoming 2012
 EKU Marching Band
 Homecoming Parade
 Waiting For The Candy!
More Candy Please!
Andrew And Ryan At Madison Gardens
Sarah Beth At MG's
Colonels Touchdown!
Kids Watching The Game
Andrew Playing Football At The Game
Ryan And I

Homecoming Pics Day 1 . . .

Last weekend was my college Homecoming.  We go every year; we've only missed 2 - the year we got married, and the year we were in China.  We always have a great time.  My college roommate, Sandy, and her family always go, except for the 2 years WE didn't go, and then others join us from time to time.  This year it was us, Sandy and Clyde and their 2 kids Jessica and Austin, Mariann and her daughter Katie, (her husband Eric and son Matthew were camping with the Boy Scouts), and Steve and Peggy and their boys, Peyton, Jaxon, and Gabriel.  Steve and Peggy have never been before because they live in Michigan, so it's pretty far for them to travel.  Greg came from Lexington for dinner on Friday night, but couldn't stay the whole weekend.  

We had a GREAT time.  All of the kids played REALLY well together.  Friday night we went to dinner at a Mexican place just across from our hotel.  Greg was there, but the others weren't in yet.  It was pretty good.
Here's the kids acting goofy before we went in:
 We had a nice time just catching up and spending time together.
 I had a couple of beers.  Of course, they were BIG beers!
I wish I would have remembered to take a picture of our food.  Ryan and I split the Fajitas for 2, and we could have easily split it with the whole family.  It was HUGE!  
It's a good thing we walked over, because we needed to walk off some of that food and drink!  Clyde only had 1 drink, but he looks like he's about to fall asleep!
 Oh, NOW he's awake!
After that we went back to the hotel and let the kids go swimming.

Glad they had a good time!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

He's Home!

Scott is FINALLY home!  YEA!  He was supposed to get home tonight, around 11:30, but he switched his flight, so he got home last night instead.  He didn't tell anyone but me and a friend of my parents.  He was hoping to surprise them at a party they were going to be at, but his flight got in late, so he ended up surprising them at home instead.  And yes, they WERE surprised.  And very happy to see him.  

He was gone for 4 weeks.  He lost 45 pounds and 6 inches in his waist and chest and 4 inches in his hips.  I wish *I* could lose 45 pounds!  I'm so proud of him though.  He obviously worked very hard while he was gone, and he plans on keeping it up now that he's home.  He has a target weight that he wants to get to.  Based on the information he learned while he was away, he figures it will take him about 62 weeks to get to where he wants to be, if he does the things he's supposed to do.  So that means that by next Christmas, he should be at his target weight.  I really hope he makes it. 

I was doing pretty well.  Or I guess I was just doing okay.  I've lost 13 pounds.  But I've been stuck.  I guess I need to start back on it tomorrow and get serious again.  It's just frustrating.  It feels like no matter what I do, nothing really happens.  But I know it's because I'm not working hard enough, so hopefully the big changes Scott is making will inspire me to make some changes as well. 

Catching Up . . .

Okay, so it's Day 14, and I'm 3 posts behind.  If you ACTUALLY  knew me, you'd know that's nothing unusual for me.  My original birth date was 7/31, but I wasn't born until 8/9.  My mom always says, " you were 10 days late, and you've been late ever since!"  Unfortunately, that's pretty much true.  I TRY to be on time, but I'm just not very good at it.  I usually get into something and then I lose track of time.  And of course, now that I have kids, I'm ALWAYS late!  Have you tried getting 3 kids ready, at the same time?  NOT an easy feat!  Luckily, they're getting a little older so they can pretty much get themselves ready, But maybe this should be one of my New Years resolutions for next year.  Maybe I should try harder to be on time. 

It's funny, when I was working full-time, I was very rarely late to work.  We had to clock in on our phones, and in 3 years, I was only late like 3 or 4 times, and even then it was only 1 or 2 minutes.  That's a REAL feat for me.  And when I'm showing houses or going to an Open House, again, not usually late.  Weird huh?   I'm sure there's some psychological meaning behind it, but I'm not going to delve too far into it.  Not sure I WANT to know the reasoning!

But I think I REALLY should work on punctuality.  I guess I'll add that to my list of New Years Resolutions!  :(

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Jason . . .

I realize as I've looked over my previous posts, that I haven't written much about Jason.  Jason is my oldest.  He's 13, and he's in 8th grade.  And he's the quietest of my 3 children.  He's always been the quietest.  But now that he's a teenager, he's even quieter.  And that scares me.  A LOT.  I remember what it's like to be a teenager.  It sucks!  Your body is changing in ways you didn't even know it could change.  Your hormones are racing.  Acne sets in.  Insecurity usually sets in.  You start worrying more about what other people think of you.  You want to spend less time with your family, and more time with your friends.  You want to spend more time by yourself.  You want to try new things.  You're too old for some things, but yet still too young for others.  Did I mention, it sucks?!

Andrew has ALWAYS talked to me.  And I'm hoping he keeps it up.  Jason DOES talk to me, but not as much as I'd like him to, and not as much as Andrew does.  I want to know what's going on in his head.  What's he thinking about?  What does he want to be doing?  Does he wish he was somewhere else?  Does he wish he was SOMEONE else?  I talked to him in the car this morning on the way to school, of course *I* was the one doing all of the talking, I think he might have still been asleep!  :)  I asked him, "You know you can talk to me about anything, don't you?"  He told me he did.  But I'm not so sure.  I told him that he can talk to me about anything.  I told him I might not always agree with him, but I'll always listen and be open minded to what he has to say.  Not sure I got through to him, but I sure hope I did.

Jason is my creative child.  He LOVES music.  He plays the Oboe and Percussion, and he's taught himself to play the guitar.  He has also started writing songs.  And he's pretty good too, although I might be a LITTLE bit biased!  ;)  This year he joined the Drama Club.  They are doing "Aladdin Jr".  He tried out for the part of Aladdin.  I REALLY hope he gets it.  It would be cool to see him in that role.  Whether he gets the part of Aladdin or not, he'll have SOME role on stage, but I'd like to see him as Aladdin.  He had to sing for his audition.  He says he thinks he did pretty well.  They will post the parts on Monday or Tuesday of next week, so we'll see. 

Here's Jason's latest song that he wrote:

 So what do you think?  Am I just biased, or is there a little bit of talent there?!  ;)

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Car Update . . .

FINALLY had the van looked at today, and yes, it is the transmission.  That's the bad news.  The GOOD news is that it's only going to cost $1700 to fix it.  I know that's a lot of money, but it's not as much as the cost of a new/used car!  Plus, the mechanic said the only time he ever sees my car is when it has a problem, and he doesn't see it that much.  Meaning, if we had a lot of problems with it, it probably wouldn't be worth it.  But since we don't, it might be worth it.  He said if it was him, he would have it fixed.  So, that's what we're doing.  And I'm glad.  Because I LOVE my van.  I don't want to give it up.  And I REALLY don't want a car payment! 

We won't get it back until next week, but at least we'll get it back!  :)   Of course that means we'll be going to Homecoming in Ryan's car, which is pretty small, but that's okay.  The kids will live.  

It's been a long and exhausting day, so I'm heading to bed.  Believe it or not, I can't think of anything to talk about!  :)  I know, so unlike me right?  I guess I really AM tired!  


Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Recent Pictures . . .

I've taken some pretty good pictures on my phone lately, so I thought I'd post some of them.

 Sarah "cleaning" her room!
 I think she's "primping" more than cleaning!
 Her Self Picture
 I LOVE this picture! 
 Andrew with is Saxophone that he's learning to play.
 My two babies!
 She's such a ham!
 They really love each other!
 After the skating party
 Waiting on the school bus
 Showing off her new boots!
 She outta be in pictures!
 I LOVE this girl!
The roses I got for our 16th Anniversary

Monday, October 8, 2012

Substitute Teaching . . .

Now that Sarah has started school, and I'm childless for the first time in THIRTEEN YEARS, I'm trying to figure out what I want to be when I grow up!  ;)  Until then, I'm going to take a stab at Substitute Teaching.  I finally filled out the form.  It took me about 6 attempts.  It says you have to complete it within 2 hours, but it's actually more like 30 minutes.  So I kept getting timed out and would have to start over again.  SO FRUSTRATING!  But, it's done.  So we'll see what happens now.  Part of the application is to answer the question: 


And here's what I wrote.  Hopefully it's good enough:
Students are with their teacher the majority of the day. Therefore, teachers are a big influence on their life.  I know and value the importance of this position and understand that my mood, opinion, understanding of the students, and view of the day can affect each and every student.  Each child is an important part of the puzzle and I know from personal experience, as a student and as a mother, that a teacher must not only manage a class, but also respect and care about each child individually.  

My brother and I both have Dyslexia, although mine is a pretty mild case. I also have a mild case of Dyscalculia, so Math has always been a struggle for me.  Growing up with a learning disability and being around it my whole life, I know that every child learns at a different level.  What works for one child, won’t work for another.  As a teacher, my job is to find out what WILL work for that child, and implement it into the learning process.  

My own personal teaching philosophy would incorporate both Teacher Centered and Child Centered learning.  Some children learn better from other students, where they can hear their ideas and work in small groups, while others learn better from listening to the teacher and working by themselves.  Because every child DOES learn differently, incorporating both of these styles should help address some of these issues and better meet the needs of all of my students.  If neither one of these methods work, then it’s my job to find something that WILL work.  My students can’t learn if I can’t figure out how to teach them.  

I am the mother of three amazing children.  But they are very different, so I have to parent them in different ways.  I’ve learned over the years what works best for each child.  I believe teaching is pretty much the same.  If my own children are so different, then I have to realize that the thirty kids I’ll be teaching will obviously be different as well.  It’s my job, as their teacher, to take the time to get to know them, and to discover their strengths and weaknesses, which will then help me learn what teaching methods will work best for them.  As a parent I know I make mistakes on a daily basis.  But I’d like to think I LEARN from those mistakes and I try to do things differently the next time the situation arises.  As a teacher, I know I will also make mistakes, but I have to get up, dust myself off, and try to learn from them.  The only TRUE mistake is the one we never learn from.  

In the end, being concerned about what’s best for my students is what’s really important.  As long as I am learning about them, teaching them, and honestly trying to do what’s best for them, I know I will be an effective teacher.

So, what do you think?  Does it sound like I know what I'm talking about?!  ;)

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Andrew And His Colts . . .

Andrew is a BIG Colts fan.  We redid his room last year for his birthday, and he wanted a Colts theme.  He doesn't just like the Colts, he LOVES them.  And he watches every game that's on television.  Today was no exception.  But today, he was HYSTERICAL.  If you didn't see the game, you missed a REALLY good game.  Indianapolis was down 21-3 going into the second half.  And they ended up winning 27-30.  Andrew was THRILLED!  He was really funny, so I decided to tape him.  This is after they scored what would be the winning touchdown:
This is after Green Bay missed the Field Goal that would have tied it up and made them go into overtime:
I love the enthusiasm my son has for football and for life in general.  He really is a fun kid.  And I just want him to be happy.  As happy as he was today when Indianapolis won.

A Day Late . .

Okay, it's the 7th, and I'm just now posting my SIXTH post.  BUT, I have a good reason, and I will catch up.  I had EVERY INTENTION of posting yesterday.  But then my car died.  No, I mean REALLY died.  We went down to the lake Friday night so we could do a couple of things around the house, and then we had to pull the boat out of the water on Saturday.  They are lowering the lake in a week, and since we'll be at Homecoming next weekend, (YEA!), we HAD to get it done this weekend.  So we go to pull the boat out of the water, and the van won't move.  So we all get out of the car, and then Ryan's able to pull it out, but it was NOT happy.  And we wondered if we would make it up the hill.  Which we did, but it still wasn't happy.  For some reason it would never shift into gear.  We went from 3/4 of a tank of gas to 1/4 of a tank, in about 30 miles!  And every time we'd stop at a light, we'd wonder if it would move again.  And then finally it didn't.  So we pulled over to the side of the road and called AAA to get the car, and his Dad to get the boat and take it to the shop to get winterized.  The boys and Ryan went with Roger and Sarah and I went with the AAA driver. 

So yeah, I think my car is shot.  It's 9 1/2 years old, with 120K+ miles on it, so it's probably time for a new car.  I was just hoping it would be another year or two before we would have to buy one.  I'm crossing my fingers that maybe they will look at it at the shop and can fix it for under $500.  But I doubt we'll be that lucky.  So in the meantime, I'm looking at cars online, and then REALLY hoping they can fix my car.  Y'all, cars are EX-PEN-SIVE!  And we have to get something that will pull the boat, so that makes it even more expensive because you can't just go with any type of car.  Plus, we have 3 kids.  That are growing up and getting bigger.  Ryan wants to get a truck, but I REALLY don't want a truck.  I'd much rather have an SUV.  Actually, I want another van.  But vans aren't made for pulling boats, so that's probably not an option.  So we'll see.  Please pray that they can fix our car.  Then we won't have to make this decision for another year or two.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Happy Anniversary . . .

Today is our 16th Anniversary.  16 years.  Wow!  That's a long time.  Sometimes it seems like a REALLY, REALLY, long time!  ;)

It hasn't always been easy, but it's definitely been worth it.  Plus, we have 3 amazing children!

I was going to post a few pictures from our wedding day, but since my scanner isn't cooperating, that's NOT going to happen!  So instead I'll post a picture of us from a few months ago.  
Here are the roses I got for our Anniversary:
I'll still keep trying to get my scanner working, but after 90 minutes of playing with it, I'm about out of patience!  :( 

So Happy 16th Anniversary to my hubby!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

PYHO: October Is National Anti-Bullying Month . . .

There's been a video making the rounds on Facebook and Twitter.  If you haven't seen it, you should check it out:

Can I just say, this woman is my new hero.  I LOVE HER!  I want to BE her.  I literally cried throughout her whole video.  She is the person I wish I could be.  

You see, I've been overweight most of my life.  So I've also been bullied about it most of my life.  Only when I was growing up, it wasn't called bullying, it was called "teasing" or "making fun of".  But let's be clear, it was and is BULLYING.  When you laugh at someone on a daily or weekly basis for their weight, color of skin, sexual orientation, religious beliefs, etc, it's not making fun of them or teasing them, it's BULLYING.  When you whisper behind their back, but point to them, so they KNOW you're talking about them; again, not teasing, not making fun of.  BULLYING.  When you stop talking when they walk into a room or up to a table.  BULLYING.  When you make them feel like their opinions and feelings aren't important because of how they look, dress, or otherwise.  BULLYING.  When you encourage others to join in with you.  BULLYING.  When those people you're "making fun of" cry when they get home at night because they think no one likes them.  BULLYING.  When they worry so much about pleasing YOU, that they lose sight of who THEY are.  BULLYING.  When they question whether life is worth living.  BULLYING.

In case you can't tell, bullying is my hot button.  Nothing gets me more fired up than hearing about someone being bullied, or doing the bullying.  Probably because I've dealt with it my whole life.  Probably because I KNOW how it feels to be judged unfairly.  I'm a pretty okay person.  Not as great as my brother, (but in all fairness, there's only one Scott Kremer ;) ), but I still think I'm a pretty likeable person.  I tend to keep my opinions to myself, (except on here of course); I listen to other peoples ideas; I offer advice and help when needed; I volunteer at school; I try not to be judgmental; I try to give people the benefit of the doubt; I make my own decision about others and not let someone else's opinion cloud my judgement; I speak up when I see someone judging others unfairly; I try to teach my children to respect other peoples ideas, even if they don't agree with them; I try to teach them to respect other people, PERIOD; I try to teach them that everyone is different, but we're all special in our own way, and we need to see that uniqueness in others.  So yeah, I think I'm a pretty decent person.  

But if you just met me on the street, chances are you wouldn't take the time to get to know me.  You know why?  Because I'm fat.  Always have been.  And because I am, most people think I'm not worth much.  If I don't care about myself, how can I be expected to care about others?  If I can't take CARE of myself, how can I be a good Mom and take care of my kids?  I obviously don't know much about overeating and excersizing, so I probably don't know much about anything else as well.  And guess what?  You'd be wrong.  Do you think I don't KNOW I'm overweight?  I'm not an IDIOT.  I KNOW.  And I DO care about myself.  And I happen to think I'm a pretty good Mom, although depending on the day, my kids might not agree with that assessment!  ;)  But KNOWING something, and being able to CHANGE it, are 2 different things.  I WANT to be thin.  Do you know how envious I am of my friends who can eat whatever they want and not worry about gaining weight?  Or the ones that can wear anything they want to?  Who don't worry about people making fun of them because of how they look?  Who can walk into ANY STORE and find something that looks good on them?  You don't think *I* want to be that way?  If you REALLY think that, then YOU'RE dumb one.  Not me.  I AM a good person.  A good person that's been bullied her whole life.  So yeah, I tend to get a little upset when I see it happening to others. 

October is National Anti-Bullying Month.  And it's important.  We have kids KILLING THEMSELVES on a daily basis because they're being bullied.  And it doesn't matter if they're being bullied because of their size, their sexual orientation, the clothes they wear (or can't afford to wear), or the color of the skin.  It's still wrong.  And if you think it's NOT wrong, then chances are, YOU'RE the bully.  And you're likely teaching your kids to be bullies as well.  And that's NOT OKAY. 

Today, more than ever, it's easier to bully someone, because you can do it anonymously.  And you can do it without looking them in the eye.  Or standing in front of them.  You can start a rumor on Facebook or Twitter.  Text or email them.  Text or email OTHERS about them.  We hear stories EVERY DAY about someone being bullied.  Some, like Jennifer, stand up to their bullies.  Some suffer in silence.  And some, way too many, choose to end their life rather having to deal with it.  And I'm NOT okay with that.  And you shouldn't be either. 

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

More About Andrew . . .

I remembered some things I forgot to add about Andrew yesterday.  I told you he was asking about the end of the world.  But what I didn't tell you is that he only talked about it that one time.  That doesn't seem like a big deal, but NORMALLY, we would have talked about it on the way home.  We would have talked about it before going to bed that night, and cried about it, and probably not slept, because he was so worried about it.  And then we would have talked about it again the next morning before school, and probably after school as well.  But this time, we didn't.  We talked about it on the way home, and that's THE ONLY TIME we talked about it.  Now, that might not seem like a big deal to you, but to me, it's HUGE!  I'm hoping that's a good sign.  I'm TAKING it as a good sign.  *crossing fingers*

I also talked to his teacher again last week.  He asked me how Andrew was doing at home.  I told him he seems to be doing really well, and I told him about the "end of the world" discussion we had on the way home.  He couldn't believe he worries about those things.  Again, NOT typical 10 year old behavior!  We talked about him playing football at school and how much he enjoys it.  I told him he'll come home upset sometimes because he dropped the ball and I tell him it's not a big deal, people drop the ball all of the time.  I tell him that they pay the pros MILLIONS of dollars to catch the ball, and they still drop it on occasion.  If THEY drop the ball sometimes, what makes him think it's not okay for HIM to drop it?!  He said he's had the same conversations with him when it happens, but he liked my idea of comparing it to the pros, so he'll remember that the next time it happens.  

Andrew came home last week and told me he had good news, better news, and best news.  The good news is that he has an A in Math.  The better news is that he was the only one in the class that got 100% on a test.  The BEST news is that he caught a pass and made a touchdown.  Now, I'm not real sure I'm happy about the football being at the TOP of the list and school being at the BOTTOM of the list, but I am still glad to see him having so much fun and being proud of himself for a change.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Andrew . . .

It's been awhile since I've given an update about Andrew.  Since I updated on Scott yesterday, I figured I'd update on Andrew today!  ;)

The same day I talked to the AP I also talked to his 3rd grade teacher.  And she's HYSTERICAL.  She's an amazing teacher, and Andrew was very lucky to have her.  When I saw her that day I told her what was going on and why I was worried about him.  Her exact words were, "He's a F'in Genius, I don't understand what his problem is!"  I LOVE HER!  ;)  She told me that she would take care of him.  So later that day she went to find him.  And she talked to him about how special he is, and how smart he is, and that he needs to stop worrying so much about what other people think.  She told him she'll always be there for him if he needs her.  (Told you she was great)!  :)

The next day the AP called to tell me that after talking to the counselor and the school psychologist, they thought I should contact his pediatrician.  But they were in agreement that he probably will need to see a counselor.  I also talked to his current teacher.  I told him if I take Andrew to a counselor and after a few sessions he/she tells me he's a normal 10 year old, then I will be fine with it.  He told me he's been teaching 5th graders for 10 years, and it's NOT normal 10 year old behavior.  Normal 10 year old's don't worry about death on a regular basis.  Normal 10 year old's aren't SO concerned about what other people think.  Normal 10 year old's don't worry about the end of the world.  He's NOT a normal 10 year old.  And he's right.  It's NOT normal 10 year old behavior.

So after talking to everyone at school, I DID call his pediatrician.  He said he has severe anxiety, and he needs to see a Child Psychologist.  Our insurance just switched over today, so I wanted to wait until then before finding a Psychologist.  I didn't want him to start with one person and then have to switch.  So now I'll start looking for one.  My problem though is that he seems to be doing better now and I don't want him to be stuck with the label of seeing a Psychologist, if everything is okay.  But I know it's cyclical.  I know that he could be upset tomorrow.  It's been awhile, so it's about time for it to happen again.  

A couple of weeks ago we were coming back from the school skating party.  On the way home he said, "I'll be glad when this month is over."  I asked him why and he said "Because they say the world is going to end this month."  REALLY?  How many 10 year old's worry about the end of the world?  I asked him who "they" was and he couldn't tell me, just that he'll be glad when this month is over.  I told him I'm 42 and I can't tell him how many times the world was "supposed" to end.  So then he asked me when it'll happen.  Will it hurt?  Will it be in our lifetime?  How will it end?  Will we KNOW it's ending?  I DID mention he's TEN, right?!  I don't worry about the end of the world and I'm FORTY-TWO.  (Shhhh, don't tell anybody).  Anyway, yeah, that's normal 10 year old behavior.  So I guess I'll be calling a Psychologist.  But in the meantime, he's doing well, and I hope it stays that way.  At least until we can get him to see a Psychologist.