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....Where I beef about the many different "plates of crust" in my life....

Updated: 2017-12-10T19:09:33.706-08:00




I was recently asked a question by BlogHer:"How do I plan to create Happiness for myself in 2012?" Tough question if you ask me..*(oh before you get started in reading my answer, make sure to put your own answers in the comments field, and follow the links so that you may have  a chance to win a Kindle Fire in the sweepstakes. Click HERE to enter the contest and CLICK HERE To read more on happiness.)Here's what I came up with:Once Upon a time in a cedar scented world, hope existed. It's development over time, gradual, piece by piece, served generally in the form of gifts.It stood for promises.Commitments and seeing the future slowly reveal itself to you, with every life progress placed within.It represented Unknown worlds and collections.Future Happiness.Fairy Tales for some.Treasures.Hope.It meant milestones on a canvas without yet a single hue of color.The artist was there, the hope was ready, and slowly it was built, in the same fashion that a house is built, upon a foundation that one man couldn't build himself.Once Upon a time people were given Hope Chests.Most of the time these gifts were intended for young ladies, and served as a graduation gift as they ventured onto the world of college.It's purpose was to build the woman's future of marriage and children and proper household duties.Gifts were given that were meant for her future, and she'd place them happily in her hope chest.When she would open the cushioned cover of her tomorrows, her ears would awaken to the specific creak that these chests would make whenever the cover was raised, revealing her slowly growing hopes and dreams. Hope chests may have held a small sewing basket, quill and buttons, quilts, linens, perhaps a small pie platter and serving set, heirlooms, and always whispered words of wisdom.She would raise the chest whenever she was gifted with something, her eyes glancing at the interior wood of her Hope Chest. The inside of the chest, more then likely not finished, and complimenting that would be the scents that were also stored in this porous chest of hopeful happiness. The smell of the past from  the lotion covered hands of your Great Grandma that were embedded into the fibers of the quilt that she hand made for you. These scents, mixed with what you and I may recognize today as carpeting in a hamster's cage, helped add to your dreams of happily ever after.When she would go to her hope chest to add to her hopeful heritage, her eyes would glance beyond the present items, and she would see her future, her dreams. Knowing someday her stored contents would be the very things that would ensure happiness in her family's world.Happiness was easily built back then. Or at least from my perspective it appeared as though it didn't take much to build hope.So when and why did that stop? Whatever happened to all those wonderful Hope Chests?I imagine that's part of the reason why happiness is hard to find.  Instead of worrying about why it went away, or who was the one at fault for taking it away, or even the commonly sought after question: "When will I be happy again," he best way to learn happiness starts with one three letter word:"""HOW"""How can I make happiness when life is minute by minute?For one I need to stop worrying about the minutes.SOLUTION: focus on measuring the momentsHow will I find happiness and how will I pursue it for 2012?I need to enhance my willingness to not try to fix the broken and injured.SOLUTION: enhance my awareness on empathy and focus on the now and the tomorrow.For example, my brother has a "tail" that will be attached to himself for the rest of his life. It's called a TBI. I have spent countless hours researching ways for him to "make himself okay" with his "tail," since coming out of his medically induced coma almost three years ago this May. I have researched ways to fix him, never realizing that instead I should be focused on being a caregiver in the form of listening.I've spent all this time trying to give him profound answers to his aliments. Telling him to have peace with the accident and move forw[...]



Merry Christmas
Happy Chanukah
Happy New Year
Happy Kwanzaa
Any reason to celebrate today and going forward, give it a shout. Sometimes it just feels good saying something that forces your mouth and lips to curl up and smile.

Sorry for the long time away.
but am back and here to stay..
with much more to say.

Especially on boys toys joys drama and you name it,
I've reviewed it.



It's a new day. When she approaches the cold bathroom floor and faces the mirror she feels good. She advances upon the mirror ready to face her image, all crows feet puffs and bloated age spots. But she feels good. It's a new day and she's doing something new. She's improving her implementation quotient (FABULOUS BOOK btw!!), finally. It takes her awhile in certain areas of her life to improve this particular IQ part of her life. You see she has this type of personality that can compliment one another but at times hinder her own potential. The part that tends to hold back her IQ is the "I'll just let it go," "it's not worth it," "I'm not going to be drama," "yes it sucks bone ball bags that I've been excluded yet again, but oh well, I have so many other wonderful opportunities to focus on.."Eventually the nice part of her personality so willing to get a few scratches, after all, they compliment her crows feet and bloat, will tire of this. Eventually the IQ wins out and slowly her personality works together to improve her confidence and ability to speak up..She doesn't want to stand out. She wants to help. She doesn't want the applause. She wants to help to earn others applause. As we know, life doesn't always work out that way.But on this day, it will.Her image set to paint, her hands without the caffeine shake early in the morning, she begins to apply her strong face. Not worried how it will turn out, whether the recent return to her natural roots will prove challenging, whether there will be a light beige line along her jawbone. She is excited and prepared.She is almost done with this part of the ritual. The application of her face. As she sweeps bristles of promise across her cheeks, laughing to herself that soon enough her real colors will glow out of nerves, giving her the perfect miss piggy cheek glow, but it's okay.She's doing something new about something old that has been going on long enough. The reason this time? Not for her benefit, but because of how strongly she believes this will benefit a great group of people.As her hands don't fail her, and her grasp is gingerly wrapped around the paint that provides an enhanced eye curl, she remains prepared.The moment presents itself. She is prepared. She provides her purpose and the plan, and of course as she is always better on paper then she is verbally, she does have moments of scatterbrain blush and before long the scarlet vine creeps up her neck. But that doesn't bother her. She knows it's part of her. Even when she glimpses the person across the table taking quick glances at the quick growing blotchy vine of neck flush, she is okay with that. For this is her. This is her with the scratches, and the IQ.The moment is approved. She is so excited for what this will do to help individuals learn visually the meaning of certain events that occur throughout the year. Then Hilly shows up.The Hilly that has been 90% of the reason she's worn the scratches the past year. Hilly tries to bully the plan. She tries to belittle. She uses power names. The project still is in place.Hilly loves the letter "I." She loves applause and all that glitters, but for some reason she does not like me.She is unwise as we are part of one group, and if she were to use her own gifts, as she does have them. For example her ability to implement something is outstanding. Very admiring. Yet Hilly refuses to realize the influence and vision that the splotchy scratched vine neck could bring. She represents a number of other words that also lines up with the name "serial bully." But, again, Red Vine Neck looks at the benefits this strong woman demonstrates...everyone has good.But Hilly. No oh no will she allow Red Vine Neck to use her hands. She refuses to see the benefit Red Vine Neck could be to her, and instead demonstrates behavior only visible to Red Vine Neck. She plays the role well. She picks the right friends. Sadly, even though the project is in motion, Hilly is still causing d[...]

My Son's Are In Love With Their School Nurse!


"Gargle with salt water...."
"Gargle with salt water..."
"Gargle with salt water...."

It seems to be a common post bus drop off statement in our house these days.
Not just with one or two of my sons, but all three. I think the third is just influenced by two and one.

You see, they LOVE the school nurse.
Or, rather, going to SEE the school nurse.

I don't know where they got that from. Sure, in High School I would fake the occasional cramps are ruling my ability to participate in P.E., but that was High School. Even then I was worried about being seen as a fake especially when I was being honest. 

But when you hear from all of your sons, "I went to the nurses office today..."
"I fell at recess and went to the nurses office today.."
"I felt sore and went to the nurses office today..."
you start to second guess your parenting skills.

"What have I done to my young boys to make them confident enough to mention pain to the teacher on duty?"

"Have I babied them?"
"Am I not babying them, enough?"

It was two weeks into school, and I kid you not, out of two weeks, which equates to 10 days, Sullivan had happily stopped by the nurses office 4 out of the 10.

Every time I'm at school, there's always someone coming and going from the nurses office.
Usually with the suggestion to..."gargle with salt water.."

Is it our teachers that are not able to deal with whatever tiny aliment they're complaining about?
Is it out of fear of lawsuits?
Is it just that my sons enjoy the break from their classroom?

Who needs a break when you're in kindergarten? 1st grade? 4th Grade?
There's no excuse, unless they're all just smitten for her and are in competition for her love.

Makes me wonder how I can change this at home.

My son had a sore throat, no fever, all was good, but I knew it was allergy like. So, he went to school, because I'm that kind of Mom. I did send him with cough drops to help him out if he should feel the tickle getting a bit too uncomfortable.

Then I get a call from the school,...."Hi Mrs. One Crusty Mom-E," just to make you aware, but children are not allowed to bring medication to school."

"Medication??" I quickly run through the morning events? What did I do? Stick Aspirin in place of the snack in their lunch? I'm seeing my morning play by play still thinking, medicine, when the nurse says, "cough drops."

Apparently they're not allowed to bring them to school.

Therefore Sullivan had them confiscated (exaggerated word) until the end of the day. He was informed that he could pick them up at the office before heading out to the bus at the end of the day. In place of the drugs that I sent my son to school with, the school nurse provided him with a mint. Told him to suck on that for awhile and it should help with his sore throat. Then, told him guessed it....."gargle with salt water."

He wanted to bring bandaids to school the other day, should the one he was already wearing, come off.

I told him to just "gargle with salt water instead" and go see the nurse for a band aid.
There's so many new rules with school today, I don't know how the PTA President keeps it all straight, let alone the School Nurse.

At least the school is comfortable sending the kids whenever they complain about a body part. The funny part is, they're always told to "gargle with salt water," whenever they go.

Wonder if that's code for: "Solve it yourself little one."



I really think I need an alarm clock sans snooze button to help out this Crusty Mom-E.Right at this moment I have half chewed nails, roots that are screaming for color, dog hair on my socks and sweet pepper jalapeno dip on my shirt. Hair is a hasenbeenwashedsincewed pony tail and I am exhausted.I knew I hadn't been over here for awhile, but this long? Yikes! Is there a blog app for that somewhere? A "you need to post something" app?..............It used to seem as though life were busy with little drooling ones. No time. Same need for color, new socks, and washed hair. But the more they progress, the more again, I am witness to how much time it takes out of my own life. Not that I'm complaining. I enjoy the amount of time parenting takes-even when I'm screaming at the top of my lungs because my sons have looked at me cross eyed with eye rolls over long division lessons-. But it takes time. I don't know the amount of time Jr high kids take, but I do know that three boys in grades 4th, 1st and Kindie, take a lot of time.Are any of you familiar with what an IEP is? Those of you who aren't, that's wonderful! Your child is normal! (Based on state standards that is. Hee-hee.) Our youngest is on an IEP and we've recently been informed that he is falling behind in the normal classroom like setting. That isn't a surprise to us. We knew he wasn't ready for kindergarten. "Then why did you send him," you ask? Well, for those of you familiar with an IEP will understand. But to sum up, if your child, in this particular state that we live in, is on an IEP and turns 5 before the cut off date, in order to continue to receive the state funded services, due to the child's disability, will have to either a) go to kindergarten or b) parents revoke the services that the child needs.We're lucky that Ben was/is able to be in a Gen Ed classroom. Up until recently. We're so grateful he has a very caring teacher to notice how much he is falling behind because he does need to leave his Gen Ed classroom to receive the services that he needs. Only problem is, when he returns to the classroom, he's behind on what they're learning and unable to keep up. The fast pace roll of Gen Ed is too much for him right now--not just my words, but his teacher's as well- He needs more one on one guidance, and in part because of his young age and the other because of his disability or learning disorder, has put him at risk for falling even further behind. The scary part is that Fall is more review time in school, they teach and advance the children but in a pace not nearly as fast as the program after December. So we have some decisions to make, but one that we all know will be to start, is to have our little dude spend most of his time in the smaller classroom setting instead of vice verse like now. He'll still join his class for gym two days a week, but aside from circle time in the morning, he'll spend the majority of his time in a smaller "self contained" classroom.This recent discovery has my mind exhausted. Has my fingers worn out from the endless hours of research spent online and by means of pen in hand to take notes. Ben and I, since school has started, spend every afternoon up until recently, "learning."  I've probably exhausted him, but I try to make it fun. Instead of sitting and tracing letters, and making sounds, we listen to music that relates to it, and act it out. We play alphabet baseball and he can advance bases when he is able to speak the letter and say the sound. We make it fun for him, but no matter, he is still falling behind.That has me beached.Bullying, as you already know, has me beached.Our middle balance, actually right now is the only normal right now. Meaning our son. But it's still exhausting because of the constant reminder in my head to be sure to keep things "fair" when parenting.And people wonder why I don't have time to get out.I could, probably, if I put my mind to it. But when there is downtime, I long to just spend[...]

Bullying Moms- Bystanding Broads-Victimized like Cancer


Bullying. It brings our minds to so many very different things. For me, I think of Columbine.Bullying in elementary schools? Bullying in elementary schools does exist. I used to think it was only possible in private schools.But that was during my youth. During my grades K thru 8th stint in a private school. I used to think it wouldn't be bad once switching to a public HighSchool.But then I became a Freshman at a Public High School. I've chatted up my blog posts previously, on bullying. On bullying Moms. On catty kitties.On bullies and children.I don't know what your situation is, if you have children in public or private schools, if you are a student yourself, or a happy AARP member hanging out with your bridge or Mah Jong friends every other Thursday..but what I do know, and so wish to be told I'm wrong, is that no matter how old we get, women will either bully, be bullied or watch it from the sidelines, for as long as we all shall live. Someone tell me I'm wrong!You may think that this has to do with me and my past. Maybe that I was bullied my entire life?  Thankfully my bully experience was chronic in elementary school, like having a consistent flare up of herpes, but has been only episodic later on. I've learned how to manage it. I've learned how to treat it, like you would IBS. You know the signs and how to spot  But I haven't been bullied my entire life. I've witnessed it as well, and as far as the way women bully other women, I'm sure at some point I may have intentionally and repeatedly excluded another fellow woman, for that I am sorry, because to have done so, meant that I myself took the Bully card. I'm clearly pointing out the observations I've made throughout my young life, as a victim, and as a bystander as well. Here's the reason that concerns me about bullying:  people don't realize that there is a very silent form of bullying, and I explain it in comparison to the silent killer of cancer in women; ovarian cancer. It's a hard thing to see, to diagnose, until you actually get in there surgically, and take a look around. It's easy to say, "oh you're just bloated because of hormones.." Or in the form of bullying, "you're just extra sensitive and upset because of hormones.." Do you see the relation? In young girls, my fear is that by the time you discover this form of bullying, it will require extensive treatments. Surgical exploration and biopsies to see what sort of damage the bullying cells have caused within the girl. The longer it takes to diagnosis it, the longer it'll take to consider yourself part of the remission category. Many are never cured by bullying. Yes, that's right! They've had to adapt themselves to the cancerous cell, making it part of their life, despite the fact that the tumor is probably long gone. There are no signs of cancerous cells, and no longer any symptoms, but it never leaves you, it's just placed in the remission category. Don't get me wrong, there are some of us that have been victims of bullying, that are able to walk out of treatment and chemo and get in the curable line. But even in the Curable category, it still is discussed. You're still in line with other cured victims, and you all have horror stories...perhaps the ones that hurt the most are the stories of your friends that succumbed to the bully cancer. The horror stories for the cases where the "cancer" wasn't caught in time, wasn't treatable and definitely  not curable.  While those of us in the curable and remission categories know that the cancerous past of bullying will always remain a part of our life, there are so many girls that cannot get beyond treatment, that either turn into a bully themselves, or even worse, feel as though there is no treatment for this form of cancer. That they are meant only for the ter[...]



I've been "away" for this long. I have been working on a few projects.
For one, I'm trying to adjust to the new school schedule beginning Thursday.
Because my youngest is now part of the Public School System as a happy Kindergartner on an IEP.
He's ready.
I'm not.

Now, my first grader, he's not ready.
My fourth grader, well, he's so balanced that I worry that he's too ready.
He'll be fine.

All of them will.
I don't know if I'm ready.


They're letting go of my hands. Avoiding hugs like the plague. Wiping my goodnight kisses on their pillows.
Asking to wear Deoderent. Looking at Boobs.
Preparing for Advanced Gifted Classes. Asking for the "shampoo and steam/massage and relax" package at the SportsClips where they have their hair cut. Talking about marriage. Understanding the word: "mating." But only from the animal perspective. Using goofy words like "that's beast," for when something is cool.
Watching hot Disney Girls sing on tv. Lady Gaga lyrics known.

There's so many more.

Having Jack smell the different deoderants, showing him what happens when it gets on clothes ("GASP! I Can't have that paste on my football Jersey's Mom!!!")and guiding them towards "older guy" man shampoo and body wash. I am almost through the five stages of grief, when dealing with "Son's That Stop Hugging." Melting when they ask me NOT to wash their pillowcase (because my kisses are always on it). Discussing the likes and dislikes of hot mint scented towels wrapped around them and having one son suggest that they let you "pick a bright scent" because the mint was too spicy. Noticing that Jack and Ben loves Blonds and Sullivan loves Jet Black long haired exotic boobs with legs.



It's a curse.My son, Jackson said it's strange how the word "cure" is so simple, and yet it is shared and altered by one letter, 's'.Curse.He doesn't understand why our friend is dying.He doesn't understand why the Gov't is always trying to make the economy better, or to try and "teach" everyone to get along, ..To try and improve this issue, and vote and work on improving that issue,...Yet, in my friend's case, and so many other faces, there is no future.He doesn't understand why our Gov't can pour all this money into chance."Chance."They don't know if their "ideas" will work. But they agree to try.Some fail, some work, many you won't see the effects until many years down the road.But they continue to vote and veto and Ney, hey and say.Chance is still part of the Government and their vocabulary.For our friend, there isn't such a word.My son wants to know why the hospital gave me crutches because of a recent injury with my toe. and why it's so hard for our friend to get a ramp.He wants to know why our insurance company will pay for my crutches. Even though I can still attempt to walk without them..Hobble on them, or wobble with one.He wants to know why our friend has to pay out of his pocket for any sort of mobile equipment, when soon he won't even be able to walk, let alone hobble. Insurance doesn't cover ramps, chair lifts, pulley systems to help the body lift up out of bed and so forth. Not a dime.Not a penny.They don't even permit a flip of a coin. At least there's still "chance."But they'll cover a sprain to the shoulders. A wrap for the knee, crutches for some damaged toes, and...and and..My son is going to be 10 in the fall, and is already far more aware of "life" then I ever was at his age.It's our intent to promote removes later ignorance. We don't know the impact it may have, at this point, but we're hoping that "chances" are, our involving our sons in important matters such as "life," will help promote awareness someday.It does come with questions and painful scary truths...the mind wanders, the eyes gaze around the room as they observe more grown men sobbing as our friend stands before us, trying to speak. Soon he'll have no voice.A few recent questions from our son:"Mom, can I die from ALS?""Can kids get ALS?""If I write a letter will the gov't listen to me?""How will I know?"My reply?"All you can do is try. When you try, you are awarded with chance, even if it isn't something you'll see with your eyes..and chance means a possibility for change."Our 31 year old friend is dying. His daughter recently turned two.He was able to see her first steps, and hear her call him "Daddy!" But she will not see his feet walk her down the marriage aisle, someday. She will not have him alongside her as she walks thru the kindergarten world, in three years or four.36 to 48months until she goes to kindergarten.In that time, our friend's months will be up. Unless chance helps bring change, and change gives more odds.ALS is a cruel curse.The fact that it's such an ignored disease, is even more frustrating. The govt' or insurance companies don't recognize it as a disease. WHAT????????Do you know it costs approximately $200,000 a year to take care of your ALS family member or friend?40 medications a day, approximately.At that point, mashed up and mixed and poured down the tube that feeds you.. thru the port.Our friend is dying.My son doesn't understand.He doesn't understand why someone is so willing to pour money into something that is strictly " economical chance," but yet it just doesn't seem that they're willing to pour money into ALS's chance. If you don't know what it does to someone, you're lucky.In this house, we've seen what it does. To three different people. Only this particular person, this one of three, is just 31.ALS attacks all (and more) that is listed in[...]

The Giving Guinea Pig


Being the oldest has it's perks.Being the oldest cousin has it's perks as well.But not when it comes to getting older.This is nothing to do with an age/wrinkle thing. Stretch mark, hip width, or 11 wrinkles.This has to do with a lack of published information on the etiquette of growth, gifts, giving, and family.Good news, you are the guinea pigs!If you're reading this, from a stumble around the Internet, you're probably the oldest of the family, or large extended family. You're more then likely the first to get married, the first to have kids, the first the first the first...Which is great when it's a "torch" thing. All those little ones underneath you think that it's the coolest thing that their "big sister is getting married." Or, their "older cousin on their Mom's side, is having a baby." Even though they don't understand why you won't "tell anyone the names that you've picked out for the little one in womb. (Another topic another time.)You're the one that was lucky to have your Mom throw you your bridal shower, although it was your younger sisters on the invite list-but because of age, we all know who funds those parties.You're the one who's Aunts helped throw your baby shower-although it was your younger sisters on the invite list-but because of age, we all know who funds those parties.You're the one that every cousin asked if they could "bring a date" to your reception. Because it just so happened to be around the same time as Prom, and they'd much rather attend a reception then prom-although they were adorable to have their boyfriend sign the wedding card saying "thanks for letting him come to your wedding," alongside your Aunt and Uncle's best wishes message, and a check, signed by that same Aunt and Uncle because, we all know family members in HS or College, do not pay for weddings or showers. But they're graced with being given the rites to recognition.Some cousins couldn't attend the showers, or the kids birthday parties, because they were busy preparing their lives of the future, away in college. But it was so nice of you Aunt and Uncles to include them in the festivities, on the greeting card saying "Happy 1st birthday Great Niece!"This may seem very selfish. But it really isn't the purpose. Or someone that seems quite spoiled, but again, it isn't that way at all. It's just clearly a point that for those that are the oldest, you will never stop being the Guinea Pig. You see, lets flash forward 5 years, okay?You're a SAHM, four kids, one income. Your family lives in all different parts of the Midwest.Then suddenly, all those cousins, and siblings, start growing up.They start getting married.Having babies.birthday parties.Which isn't a big deal, only for the small issue of  the pressure that is placed on your home, on you and your husband, the Giving Guinea Pigs. Because, it would be rude NOT to fly in for their wedding. It would be horrible NOT to give them a wedding check. It would be cruel not to send their child a happy first birthday gift-although it would mean so much to them, if you could find the time, because they are your brother and sister in law for that matter, to fly in and meet your new nephew that was born. Their first child. Do you see where this is going?All those little cousins and siblings that were included on the cards of congrats, that threw the showers, despite the funding coming elsewhere, are finally at that same point that you were, years ago. The difference, is it's almost "expected" of you to do the funding, and for them, naturally it's excused, because how can you expect a college kid to have that money. You can't expect a college kid to just be able to come home for a first birthday party. You can't ask your sibling to take off a day of work, so they could attend their nephew's first party, because that sibling "has a very important retail job that requires no[...]



Ooooh boy. Yet another reminder why now seems harder then before. As much as I used to believe those first 6mos of life were tough, the older my boys grow, the more challenging it seems. Obvious for those of you with children older then my sons, you'll say that "just wait, it gets even harder, hunny."I'm sure it does.After all I remember what it was like for my parents, as I got older. To say the word "challenge," is being polite. Because we don't have a daughter doesn't mean squat. It's one out of three. Those are my odds. One child will happily demonstrate the stubborn attitude that I did, as a teenager. I realize it also depends on the parenting, and the time and year and how many armpit hairs, but no matter. I get it. It gets harder.Besides, my husband sure put his own Mom thru the ringer. But for right now I have arrived at the road called "pants on the ground" and "two kids playing doctor."Whaddah Do?They're not siblings. They're the same gender.It's not in the same manner as we, for some, the sexual deprived, see it as. But, kids still have a fantastic sense to things "taboo." That's why you'll suddenly find their bedroom door closed while the young kindergarten ready tots happily disrobe for the one being the Doctor.Is it foreshadowing? Is it considered a level of control or dominance if one child is always the Doctor? Is there such thing as elementary molestation amongst peers? I say that in all seriousness, but not with the concern here. I ask because this is new to me, to a certain degree. If your child is happy to always be the patient, and will happily agree to the Doctor's requests, how is that a concern? Can a child, while playing with another child, not want to participate in the Doctor's request, feel uncomfortable and be "forced" to play the patient or, "I won't let you play with my toys when you come to my house." If that happens, what do you do? If you're that child, and you don't tell anyone, what can a parent do? My own instincts that I recall from my childhood tells me that, yes, I believe another child of the same age, could display those traits. They could make another child feel uncomfortable with their requests of sexual exploration. When I say "child," I mean elementary. Before sex-ed is taught. It would seem it's more just an exploration of a sensation that they feel as the Doctor, or perhaps as the patient. Kids love things that make them feel fantastic. That's why they love video games, they think it's "good for them." As parents, we realize they're a double edge sword. But when they start sneaking of to play doctor, and try to tell you, "we're not playing doctor, we're playing medical storm troopers and Captain Rex needs a shot," when or what do you do?I will not interfere with their healthy development. House. Fort. TreeHouse Family. You name it. Kids play it. But when do you put your foot down on the constant role this particular game plays whenever your son is around that child that all they want to do, is play Doctor? Even more so, when "The Doctor," tells your son to play Doctor anyways, even though I just finished saying, "No Doctor?"In truth, I am all over this subject matter. You should be able to tell this from how all over the place this particular post is.I just don't know how far you should let it go. It isn't making my son uncomfortable. He seems to enjoy playing the victim.Oh Shit.What do you do, when your child is caught with their pants down, so to speak, because, after all, "the only way to give a shot, is just below the belly button."How do you approach this? What do you say?If you make too big of a deal of it, the kids will really gravitate towards it. But what do you do if your child is always the patient? If he and all the other patients are constantly being told to take off everything but their underwe[...]



I can only speak for this household, and this household alone. For I am not a clone, nor is my husband, or three sons. There is only one type of each of us, in this world, even if we all share the same name, eye color and love of fries dipped in mustard. This is something I say quite often to our sons. Growing up is so hard. I imagine it's far more challenging for these little guys then it was ever for us. Too many choices being thrown at them, and their poor developing brain, cannot handle the capacity to process all this information. Makes me wonder if there is an increase in kids with DX'd delays or disorders in sensory processing. As my sons parent, I have the choice what to allow in my home. Even if it doesn't make sense from the parkway outside. Even if spiders are allowed, but flies, NEVER!There's been a problem brewing, I feel, for quite awhile. It didn't happen over night. More so a spice here and a spice there. The final soup just waiting to boil over when I put too much of a fun ingredient in this developmental meal for my sons. My sons cannot be blamed for this. After all, they didn't write the recipe, nor did they determine the measurements. They may have aided in stirring the pot, but the outcome of this part of their life meal, is on my Chef Mom hands.Period.You see, my sons are addicted to violence. Or so that's what I fear. Or so that's what I see, or so that's the path that they may be on. I will not blame the makers of violence, because I wasn't forced to supply these ingredients. It was my choice. Nor am I beating myself up over this, or scared over the possibility that maybe, this delicious looking soup will sour and turn into something no one wants served at their table. They're not in HS, they're little elementary age boys. They, prior to recently, started to really test the "Chef's patience and faith" over her recipe. It's required both BigDog and I to make some radical changes within this house. Changes that are very easy for me, but also very time consuming. You can't get a gorgeous lawn by just paying someone to cut it's grass. No, you have to pull the weeds, add vitamins and sunshine and water, and eventually, with the proper care, that lawn will look stunning. That's how I feel about my sons. I saw, having had three different blades of grass and yawn for the past 9.5years, and almost 5 years and soon to be 7 years, how much work it took to maintain this darling garden of ours. Recently I've noticed that the blades of grass were turning brown. Even with regular care, the lawn didn't seem to be improving. I realized that I needed to call in some new lawn care services, to help me take better care of the lawn. I realized that perhaps by allowing too much of fun, on the lawn, was starting to really impact the development of the yard. It was sort of seasonal in the past. We'd notice it a bit, and do the right thing, take care of it, and before long we'd see more growth. Not lately.Therefore, we've removed all things that are "too much" of a good thing, from their life. They'll earn it all back, when we start to see not just re-growth in the patchy areas of their world, but new development. Already, day 3 into this new lawn care service, I see a difference. I realize that in another few weeks, suddenly our sweet lawns are going to take a dive worse then what first caused this change. I realize that. When I see the lawns suddenly refusing to change direction to face the sun, and determine that they will move against the flow of the westerly winds, that are lawn care service plan, is actually working.Thankfully, our little yards roots are strong, and this issue was clearly above the soil. It hasn't invited grubs into it's lawn, because we caught it early enough, when our lawns are still very new to their world. [...]



Before I begin, I must make clear that the purpose of this particular post, is not to destroy or discount my children's pediatrician, or their practice. Rather, my purpose of posting this, is to hear your opinions on vitamins and your children. Are they healthy? Are they damaging? Is there worthless waste of your money types? I'm not asking you tell me that "I need to find a new pediatrician..." nor am I asking you to provide me with the proper dosing of my children. Oh, and I'm too tired to proofread, so if you're up for it, feel free to leave me a comment on "what to edit."Okay, now that we've cleared that part up, lets begin:I love a certain large "healthy" food store, that is full of Whole Yummy Goods. Granted it's not a store I frequent often, but I do buy the kids vitamin's there-and soap, and the usual suspects of goods. At one of the more recent visits, I purchased a large book that discusses traditional Non-Medicine for many different aliments. It talks about vitamins, and minerals, it talks about regular warm salt water, and the difference between gargling salt that contains Iodine, versus using Sea Salt, it talks about my favorite cold friend, the's a very usual book and it's nice that I have my fingers on paper versus an electronic keyboard when I go searching for "how to solve plantars fascitits"  It makes me feel old school, and natural, and I really like that feeling. Although I'll always use deodorant, and I will not give up fast food chain coffee, and fries..especially the coffee that is geared for the stars of the world with big bucks. lol.I recently purchased two different types of vitamins for the kids. They've been under the weather, and two hospital visits in one month because Ben couldn't breathe was enough for me. I knew that they needed more then I was I called in the troops of the vitamin C world. But I didn't know "how" many vitamins they could take. Yes, I realize the box does provide all that information, assuming you have a good idea of your kid's weight, and age, but for me, I've moved into this 'Mental Mom approach' that, not only is age and weight a factor, but also the environment, their emotional state, and their eating habits, (and sleeping-or lack there of). I used that remarkable book that I mentioned above, and, started the vitamins in the way that fit the textbook of each of my sons.I did call the kid's nurse to ask them about the doses of the vitamins, just to be sure. Naturally it took them about a day to return my phone call-Croup/Strep/Flu Season--- and when they did call, I wasn't home. Prior to this I had looked up information based on "American Standards on Vitamins." It gave me similar information, so when I called the Pediatrician's office back, and got a voice mail that their phone lines were down -BAD WEATHER- I figured, "eh, the boys are due for their annual appointment soon, I'll just ask the Doctor when I see her in May.Now we're in May, while school was still in session. It's the evening of the doctor appointment for all three boys. This particular Doctor has been in the practice for a very long time. She comes from a culture, based on stereotype, that would seem to be far more "natural," then, "load them up on antibiotics no matter what!" Let me tell you how shocked I was to hear her say, "Kids don't need vitamins, they get enough of it in the food they eat." "Don't give them the vitamins, Mom, they're bad for them, and can do worse harm then good."HALT!WHAT??DID??SHE??JUST??SAY??"They're bad for you?"Let me tell you that I'm not talking about herbs and random organic vitamins, by the way. Granted they're not the Flintstones that I grew up eating, but they're the usual Gummy types that you see in your supermarket..The other form [...]



I'm not saying this to toot my horn, believe me. Matter of fact, for those that know me, know that I don't walk around singing "me me me me me MEEEEEE..." But Bigdog and I rarely "fight" about things. Sure we'll have our annual blow up over no-ups, but that always leads to better things. (WINK WINK)We don't bicker about money, or even religion. How many of you thought that since we're "interfaith," we would? Surprisingly, we balance ourselves out quite well in terms of finance and faith. Maybe that's due to our past with one another. The previous storms we both had to weather prior to getting married. Who knows, and it doesn't matter. We rarely disagree--and that is not a joke!!-- We do, though, disagree over one thing. One silly minor thing that will cause the annual paper throwing temper tantrum that I'll display like fireworks on the 4th of July; all red faced, splotchy, loud and hoarse, with the dog covering her ears with her paws. We disagree over video games.Over our children playing video games.I hate those things.I hate what they do to our boys, what it does to us, and what the long term impact could have with these darned things. I'm not talking Wii, I'm talking XBOX. No offense to those Xbox gamers out there. Our children are 9, 6 and 4. In my opinion children shouldn't play video games until they can:A) SpeakB) write their nameC) Sleep through the nightD) Demonstrate acceptable anger managementE) write their name in cursiveF) ALL OF THE ABOVE.Yes, all of the above. Video games annoy me. Especially the ones that involve fighting.Call it what you will, but when you spend your days at home, caring for your children, chances are you'll witness boys being boys. Which means, they'll bicker, fight, sell each other out, tackle one another, hit, shove and spit on each other--for fun--Yes, FOR FUN!So why would I, want to add extra stimulation to their inner beings'? Why would I want to plop them in front of a plasma, give them a violet video game to play, and expect peace and harmony. Peace and Harmony?I think not, my friends!Video games are a privilege. Rest assured our Xbox is the first thing that disappears in this house. It's limited to weekends only, during the school year. But lately their have been more aggressive, and more antsy.It's the end of the school year, and full on allergy season, that mixed together and you'd think ADHD was the main ingredient within our home. So I took the system away from all of them-as a consequence of course.They are not permitted to play Xbox until June.I only have a few days left of this lovely consequence.Believe it or not, it has been lovely. Sure they've been in my hair and shadow far more often then not, but that's what kids ARE supposed to do. It doesn't mean I'm supposed to drop everything and go play with them, because that is not me. But they have been nicer to one another, and the one child that has been battling anger, is getting the difference between the right kind of anger, and the wrong kind.So how can I take it away permanently?You'll say, "well, you're the parent, you have the right to take it away at anytime..." or, "just take it away, already!!"I get that, believe me, I do!However I must first hold true to the punishment, and provide them with the opportunity to play it-in come June-- in a controlled environment that is--Meaning: I will have to plant my flat sorry tush on their chair in the toy room where the game system is.Or should I just put it all on the season's shoulders and tell my sons, "school is almost out (June 8th-I think), go outside and play...soon enough you'll be missing the outside freedom.."Until then, how do my husband and I figure out how to agree to disagree or just agree that "my way" is the way that is t[...]



From a young girls eyes, it looks better.Viewed by what is allowable with light. She sees it, without knowing how it really works.She watches them, looking forward to when she's on the other side, like they are.Glad to know that someday, the only exclusion, will be that of light, contractually her own. Regulating light, as it should be. From her eyes, she looks forward to being attached like they are, someday.She sees them sitting next to one another.Clapping and smiling.Taking turns in drops, and dishes. Cheering, and matching each others clothing, the only exception is the display of their supporting number, or name.She sees them standing in line, talking together, watching, as they sign up to help on set days, from the list on the blackboard. She hears her own calling for help, calling in a substitute, and yet again, they come and help. She watches as they share Kleenex, passing it down the rows as Names and circumstances are blending together, in words and song.She hears their whispers, topics ranging from the "for better or for worse," to their own little "favorite lights" of joy. She sees them nodding together, as if there is a conductor guiding their ways, especially on conversations relative towards their "little lights" and any new story, development, or funny saying.It amazes her how they can look different, have different first names for their "little lights," different jewelry, different smells in their home, and smells of their own, and yet, they're all the same. They work well together, and they are always walking in and out together, whether their arms are full of gear, tears, sweat, playbooks, kids, coats, handbooks, or report cards, they walk together and exit together. Never do you see one of them crying alone, if you see them crying, they're doing it together. Not afraid to smile or talk to the newest member. Oh, and they're always laughing.Always laughing.She knows someday she'll be there. But oh how bad does she wish to be there, right now. She'll be in the very place she currently watches. The Moms that are part of playgroups, up through graduations. Where there is no judgment. No rumors. No exclusions. No silence. No tears. No fear of not wearing the friendship pins, or bracelets. No giggling about being bra-less.No heads of lice that certain mean girls determine are no longer allowed to be played with. No boyfriend stealing, or cheating off your papers.She knows as much as she knows, so how can you blame her?As much as the mind allows at that time of her life. She doesn't have a tough life, or even a difficult one. Actually you'll see her laughing and smiling, growing and developing in her own unique way. Whether from a pail in hand, or basketball, wearing onesies, to doll clothes. Being sized for Cheerleader outfits, dresses for confirmation, or Easter, Yom Kippur or her Bat Mitzvah.Training bra's, training wheels, two speed bike, keys to the family van, Graduation Caps and Gowns, she has the ups and downs, but it's typical of youth. However, what she looks forward to, is when the peers in her life, like her, grow up to be "like them up there," Parents. That will signify the end of young girls and their catty nonsense. No more bullies or bullying.She watches her from a distance. Surrounded by loud, "one ,upping," seasonal, reason or lifetime friends. Not all of them genuine. Some with a personal agenda. Some true and real. But others only in it for attention, or perhaps to take over and remove someones best friend. She remembers when she was that young girl that couldn't wait to be a Mom, a Parent, because that woul[...]

Is He Angry Or Looking For Fans?


One of my children, who shall remain nameless, seems to be displaying issues with anger.Whether it's a video game or sibling, when something ticks him off, he rages. Okay, maybe not rages, but he sounds like a snorting bull.His hands clench into fists.He turns beet red!Yes, BEET, red.He snorts.He screeches.It scares me.Not him. His outbursts. Not because I'm in fear of him. No, because I worry about his future.He is quite dynamic. He has always felt every emotion, rather intensely. So it doesn't surprise me that this would be going on.It has been, for awhile now-not the temper tantrums-but the waves of emotions.He's been like this since day C-section One. I worry that unless I figure out how to "reach him," his future will be met with struggles.Or, is he doing it because it gets our attention?There are no new changes within our home.No loss.No re-arranging.Most definitely, no babies.I've done the Volcano metaphor.I've done this for quite some time.But lately, it seems more difficult with him.I've done the, "you have a right to feel upset, or sad.."..."but how you show it, is another thing all together..."..."You are in control of your entire body. Are you going to let your body win?..."..."Or, are you going to allow yourself to win over your body?"Crying is fine.Feeling upset and Topsy Turvy, is okay too.But screaming and yelling and going beyond, is not acceptable.I do well with managing this situation, but then I myself grow tired of the rants. I don't want to hear them. I don't care who's fault it is, and why they're reacting the way they are...I don't want to listen to it, or discuss it.I go all Love and Logic on myself and them.Sometimes I ignore the behavior.Sometimes I lose my patience.Sometimes I'm not affected, either way, with any sort of negative drama with my sons.It's far easier to parent that way-to remove your emotions from it and focus on the issue-focus on what the problem truly is.Not the temper tantrum, but why it's going that route.I'm feeling tired right now.Not with any desire to give in, just tired of trying to improve it.I've even done the YouTube Temper Tantrum search.One afternoon, I sat my sons down, and "made them," watch what parents have captured (or bystanders) on camera. Temper Tantrum Tales.Of; children in malls whining, Of; kids having meltdowns when their brother tells them to turn off the video game system,Of; kids throwing a fit when given books as gifts, for birthdays and ChristmasIt worked for awhile.I'm not saying he's always like this. Because that's not the case.It's just when he gets mad, he gets mad.He feels everything, as I said above, so much more then my other sons. He cried the hardest when our fish died.He snuggles the most when he is scared.He laughs the best belly laughs.He is most obviously the happiest, when he is happy.Maybe I need to get him into theater. No, I'm not joking with you.Maybe if I allow him to channel his feelings, and release them in a setting that is positive, will help settle the "when he's mad, he's really really mad," emotion.But until then, I'll just go around the parental circle of: constant positive acknowledgmentsremoving the problem ( VIDEO GAMES ARE MY WORST ENEMY!!)You Tubeand anything else that comes up, throughout this phase of his life.*and I thought the sleepless nights of infants were tough. What I wouldnt' give to have that "tough time" bundled in my lap right very emotional son, snuggled as a newborn, safe with a clean slate ahead of him.*[...]



Yes, it's like that.You're behind an SUV that has regular "normal person plates," but is clearly part of something else. You see it when the glare of the sun setting hits the back window of his SUV just right to see the outline of lights. Well, that and the big bold letters on the back of the SUV window, "EMERGENCY RESPONSE MANAGER." You see kids in his vehicle and he's clearly not on duty. I don't know if this particular role is a citizen emergency response team sort of thing, but what I do know is that when you promote yourself, or your role, make sure to not give anyone a reason to be concerned.So when he fails to turn his left turn signal on, even when he was at the "fault line," it makes me wonder. Or when he suddenly, at the next light, accelerates and has not even approached that same white fault line we are "supposed to remain behind" until we are given the green light. When the green light goes to yellow and you witness this Rooster go through the intersection well after the yellow light changed, you might think to yourself, "either this guy is reckless, or perhaps he's "on duty," but doesn't put on his inside flashers.Until you see the kids soccer goalie gloved hand appear "surfing" out the front seat passenger side of the SUV. Then you know that this joker, in his own vehicle, just spiffed up, and with a special role people of some team selected him to manage, is simply another poor example of Noronisms. It's one letter short of M, people. It's not that hard to decipher.Or when you're a HS student, and you're at a local Supermarket with a bunch of your friends and you witness someone being handcuffed and arrested for shoplifting. The shoplifter is your fellow P.E teacher-busted for swiping running shoes. Or the Drivers Education Teacher arrested for DUI.These don't even DESERVE Darwin awards. NORON AWARDS!The Pom Pom P.E. Teacher that is busted behind a local clothing store, engaging in sexual acts with a "consenting" 16year old boy, that is a student at the same High School.The Fireman on his way to his shift, in his gear (not fully suited, naturally), texting while he's driving.This one's a favorite of mine-personal experience the other day, matter of fact- A doctor that I had an appt with for the first time, ordered blood work. 4 vials, one stick. Cortisol. Prelactin, and two more hormone related blood orders. The convenient center is just two floors down, which I can take the orders with me, walk in and wait until I'm called by the Lab tech. Are you familiar with these particular helpful locations?  You know, the one that is helpful to you when you don't have an emergency but have more then just a sniffle, but they close at 6:00pm over the weekends, and 8:00pm weekdays? That one.So you're called back by the Lab tech that looks over your orders. Mentions that cortisol blood draws require a fast. I mention that it isn't indicated on the order, so it must be okay. She mentions that she's never drawn any one's blood for cortisol checks after 10:00am (it was 11:30), and they always fast. I asked her if I could just do the other ones and come back for the Cortisol draw, after checking to find out with the Doctor whether I need to fast-she says, "well, she could, but then I'll be charged twice." At the same moment this white garment Dolli covered woman turns her head away from me, lifts up her left hand, and proceeds to sneeze into her left cupped hand which she had hovering just a few inches beyond her right arm's elbow.What's worse? As she tries to tell me that I'll have to "pay for two pricks," (her words, not mine) and her services, and the facilities services, she gingerly and subconsciously[...]

His Feet Smell Like Damaged Sporting Good Books


Not making any sense, yet again, right?

I don't know HOW to explain this.
Sometimes I don't know what I'm doing.
This isn't a Pity Party and there is no Electronic invite going out, so no need to pull out the armored "you're a great mom," guns.

My darling oldest, is so intelligent. So intelligent that he doesn't need to study for tests before he takes them.
He's in 3rd grade, for gosh sakes.

But I wasn't joking around, he is very smart.

Only he has an issue with remembering to bring home his study guides, for any test that's on his horizon.
Does he really NEED to bring them home?
Not really.

But I get so pishwhack ticked when he not only "forgets" them, but cops an attitude with me because, "Mom, I know it already, it's optional to bring them home, and fill them out-"

Wait, he's been given the option to fill the study guides out?
I'm finding this out with 47days remaining in the school year.

I am not blaming him, as I am the parent. I'm the one that helps condition him now, for his growing hairy chested future.


Not that I'm not aware of what's going on in his classroom. I do. But Bigdog and I have also said that we cannot hover over him, we can ask him what his work is, and go from there.

That's been a big challenge for me.
Letting go and just letting him fly.
He'll still pass the tests, but he's not doing the optional, not graded for extra credit work.
That bugs me.

It's always good to go the extra mile.
We "train and prep" him now for it, by "making him" do the study guides.
But is it overkill?

He brings home a binder everyday with what his assignments are, daily and future. But he knows that unless he verbally tells me to sign his daily binder work, and view it, I won't.

It's a tough call.
Am I being too much of a raging football coach or a controlling basketball brawler coach? Am I expecting too much? He does excellent, and as I mentioned, he won't need the study guide, but habits, like height, change.

Besides that, he never forgets to bring home any sign up sheet relating to football, science, art, or basketball.
I doubt he'd leave his players book behind too.

Or am I just showing early signs of a Tiger Mom? Or a woman with ALOT on my plate, and acting like a victim, wah wah wah? I don't know.

But now I feel better after getting it all out on paper.

Ever have those days?
If you do, seek your option only study guide to reference recovery.
Unless of course, you leave it in Jack's classroom.



When you think of a sundae, what image do you paint within your mind? I imagine whatever suits your palate best, correct? For me, rainbow sprinkles in a very wide bowl so that the scoops could be placed side by side, versus one on top of the other. (It's been done that way, so don't argue with me.)The scoops are vanilla ice cream or chocolate chip ice cream, with extra heavy whipped cream and a smidgen, splash or dash of nonpareils.Sounds yummy.Only this "sundae" is different. It's unlike the one I just described in the paragraph above. No.This Sundae I've dubbed, "A Dessert." (As in, to desert, but used in a sweet after dinner way).For those of you that have experience strained, estranged, or even perhaps strange family or friend relationships, the image of THE DESSERTING SUNDAE might be more obvious to you.A SUNDAE is a selfish individual. Someone that cannot maintain a relationship with you, or the links connected to you, because they're too sweet on themselves. They'll disappear. Deserting you when you need them the most. They appear most helpful, and are full of colors and whipped wonders, they give you a lot of their time, lots of sprinkles, but when it boils down to he, me, she, or we, ultimately A SUNDAE will return to the freezer, disappearing without so much as an explanation. The image of the Sundae, is delish. But, truthfully, what the Sundae is, is far from Sweet. They are around for their benefit. To receive credit for whatever it may be they are doing. They appear to have a large bowl of time and compassion, but in all actuality they would rather freeze, retreat into the freezer, within the confines of their pint container, then melt in a bowl. So there you have it.How many of you have had a Sundae in your life?THE LUMP.It's discovered when you're in for other tests. You're as surprised as the lump is, when the Doctor says they've "found something."A person, can easily be dubbed a lump.Doesn't go anywhere.Is lazy.Prefers to, serve itself, inflating itself, making it angry or inflamed. They can cause pain, but the real lumps, the serious ones that are discovered, are the ones that aren't currently causing you pain, but down the road, you'll be in for a real fight. Could be terminal, if you're not aware of it. I'm grateful that I have removed any lumps that may have been discovered by self exam or friendly family intervention. I can say that all the people that I have chosen to be part of my life, are not lumps. They're genuine. The Fisherman.Always craving the fish the other guy has on the dock to the east of you. They may have the entire world, but still, they cannot handle it when you may have more success or luck at something. Even if they have fish jumping up out at them. They stir the lake. The stir the river or creek. They stir it up, fishing for information on your life, or the people in it, only to benefit themselves. They're very close cousins to The Sundae. The Fisherman will pop in and out of your life, and will never do anything to help you out. That is the difference. Both are selfish. But at least you're able to get a few scoops out of The Sundae. The Fisherman's only intent is to arrive early on the dock, and ask questions in a way that appears that they're truly interested in your life. Their motive is to find out where the best fish are, how many fish you've caught, and how, even though they may carry the material trophy of Fishermen Wealth. They're never happy, and will never be. They're sneaky. They seem like they want to help, but they don't. Again, at least The Sundae is around for awhile. The Fishermen type are all[...]



My teeth don't like me. Or, rather, ever since they were introduced to HCG, the teeth and I haven't been best of friends. (NO, I am not pregnant, I'm referring to the past)Anyone with problem teeth, IE: root canals, extractions, gum issues, endo issues, will know exactly where I'm coming from. Despite the fact that we're lucky to have dental insurance, it still is worthless. Those of you in similar boats, understand. I swear that the dental insurance industry is just a front for the CIA. You call to ask them questions about the coding system, and they cannot provide you with that information. From my experience these past few years, unless the dental office sends out a predetermination letter of suggested work, the insurance company will not provide you with any pricing, of their own. See? It's very covert, don't you agree?I just am frustrated because teeth are so important, and yet we have to let things slide because it's a constant competition or fight between the dentist office and dental insurance. Perhaps like brothers, Cane and Abel. They don't work well together.I was floored when I was informed that if we should see a dental office that is out of our network, but willing to accept our dental plan, the way the dental insurance determines how much they cover, is based on a % or average between all the usual and customary charges within our region/zip code. When I asked the rep if the usual and customary charges differ, she said yes, they do. I asked her where I could go that has the lowest region of established fees from their plan, and she couldn't tell me. She said that I'd have to research that myself.See what I mean? It's like the Hole in a Bucket. No matter what you do, back and forth, you never seem to accomplish what you need.I could call around to all the different dentists in the area, outside my area, and perhaps within other states. I could call them, as the insurance rep said, and ask them what their own fees are. The kicker? I tried that. After all, I can shop around for a car, for doctors, for homes, and Realtors, for plumbing work, etc, but apparently the dental offices do not give out their charges over the phone. WHAT? I would need to make an appt, come in, have a consult, and then they'll provide me with the work they feel I need, along with my costs, their fees, and what, if any they estimate my insurance will cover. Typically, in doing my research, those offices that I did call, advised me that they charge a consult fee, but it can be applied as my deductible, towards my insurance.They get you some how. The fees from offices range from reasonable to, you have got to be kidding me!!Sometimes I feel like not only are these dental offices a front for CIA work, but some of them must be practicing gastrologists in the midnight hours, because they sure figure out a way to screw you, in your twilight sedated IV haze of a colonoscopy. Where I grew up, you can find a Church pretty much on every corner. Where I live now? There are more dental offices then there are Starbucks. But maybe that will help my poor husband's hard working pay check in the long run. Maybe, just maybe, the more practices there are in my are, the more they'll compete with one another, lowering their own fees, to keep a steady flow of Decay gumming down their door steps.I have learned to believe dentists as much as I would the used car salesmen. Forgive me for that statement, but I'm qualified to say so, after all, I was in the automotive industry, and saw first hand all the things dealerships did, to "keep" their customers.I'd rather buy a [...]

How Far Do You Go?


Today is far different then when we were growing up.My Mom was always saying, "Stand up straight, shoulders back, elbows off the table, chew with your mouth closed, don't talk with food in your mouth, cross your legs when you're wearing a skirt,...."My poor Mom.I would imagine she grew tired of the constant parade of "this this and this." Did she ever question why in goods grace we didn't "get it?" Or did I actually get it? I'll have to ask her about that one.Here, in our home we have me, the Mom, and bigdog, the Dad that were raised in two completely different types of homes. Neither home was better (MINE!MINE!!MINE!!), but it's far more apparent when we come to certain crossroads when it comes to expectations of our sons.It might not necessarily be because of where we were raised, or what religion our parents are, I don't know. That's why I'm asking you.Could it be the reason Brian sees "nagging the nerves out of the kids," due to the fact that he was raised by a single parent? Or perhaps because when his parents were married, they both worked? Is it in fact due to the location where he was raised? Me, the burbs of Chicago.Him, straight south and just a beach away from SouthBeach.Miami, for those of you not around during the Crockett and Tubbs days.When he and I start to see certain things differently, it's actually sort of a fun experience, experiment? What a twisted little girl I am. How can difference actually be fun? After all, you're talking about the girl that cringes when conflict is around. My neck will flush, my ears will burn red and I just hope that time will pass to where conflict resolves without too much hurt from either parties.He feels as though we shouldn't have to keep telling our boys to sit up straight, elbows off the table. That by now they "should get it." Naturally, it's as exhausting for me to be the scratched up DVD, but I also know that they won't get it. Matter of fact, some grow up to not get it.True story.He feels as though we're doing something wrong. I'm not writing this to create drama with him, and he'll agree that he and I do have a different approach to raising our children.Is his approach because he didn't have a Dad growing up? (or should I say, his daddy played a really long game of hide and seek.) Is it because he's a guy? Is it because he only has one sibling, a younger sister about a year younger then me?Is it okay to be a bad cop and good cop when it comes to parenting? Which way is better? The Dad being the strict one and the Mom, the lovie?If you were a fly in this house, I'm lovie, but in a commander's uniform. He's fun. Maybe it's because we have boys? Could it be that reason? Or perhaps because of the type of person I am?It's hard because we don't know which way is the best. We don't know if we're helping one but harming another by nagging them with the same things. I agree with him that I need to loosen up. That is so true. Parenting has turned me into a scaredy cat.I'm not a big fan of that.Parenting has turned me into a happy homebody.I'm okay with that.But, is it common to have to constantly tell your sons, each night, the same thing over and over again?I eventually drew up a chart with pictures (to help my 4year old), so they could reference the chart and all I'd have to say was, "don't forget to check the chart check list."That helps.But not during dinner. Are you kidding me? They'd jump at the chance to get down from their seat to reference the dinner table chart on proper skills and manners.Why is it such a big deal if they get down from the table? Do you [...]



I received a handwritten thank you note the other day from a very large company. This company was responsible (online) for sending me my husband's birthday present; slippers.

I have never, seen a handwritten letter, by two agents I spoke to, besides ones we'd send out from the old phone company, Ameritech. (Remember? That's where I met Bigdog?)

Anyhow, I was shocked. I felt like carrying it around and bragging about it. It's the smallest thought, but for me, one surprisingly big reaction.

Good to know there is "Real" in big online companies.

What has a company done for you lately that made you smile? No need to share the company name, unless you want to.

(*this isn't any sort of paid promotion, BTW!!*)



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But for some, it would be a maybe.
It's a good life, and then you find out your dying.
It still can be a good life, but are you prepared when you find out it's someone you love?
Or if your loved ones find out, its you?

This is someones son.

He is someone our family has had the opportunity to watch grow up alongside our brothers. On the baseball field, and football field, and many other occasions that we were all together having a wonderful time.

Nowhere did any of us ever imagine that we'd be sharing more time with our friends, because their son has ALS.

The golf outing and private auction was a success, this past Summer.
Yes, there will be another one and I am certain even bigger then last years!

Please remember people that have illnesses that you only know initials too.

The tragedy is in the lack of resources, in order to save this young man.
So that one day he will see his daughter down the aisle.
Right now, he's grateful that he's seen her take her first steps in life.

Remember to Know more about issues like this.
Be aware of these diseases, and I pray that you'll never be as close to someone, or know someone that has been given this clock ticking finish.
This isn't the first person we've heard of.
It's just been the first one we've known, so young.

What can you do to help make it easier?



...."I'd Love To Be A Fly On The Wall..." Your Home...,"is what my sister said to me last night as we were driving home from a girls night out. This girls night was Mom, our other sister, and one really amazing sister in law. Or, one we would hope !!!!!!!!!will be our sister in law, someday.My sister made that comment as we were discussing life inside our own homes, with our husbands and kids.She said that everyone one of us in our own family has it's uniqueness, and I chimed in, "we all have something that someone else would call, 'jacked up.' When I say "Jacked up," I'm talking about ways we parent, what we believe in, what we feel our religion means, or how we drive a car or kiss our forevers'. There are many other situations that could earn you the jacked up award, but there are just far too many categories to list. Besides that's NOT the point.The way it came up is that my sister and I were exchanging silly stories of things that have recently unfolded within each of our homes. With our own spouses and children.I tried to defend myself by saying that I could say the same for her household. After all, her lunches ALWAYS taste better then the ones I make at home, and we make the same thing, but she was stubborn on this and said that it seems that things within my home are "more fun."I definitely wouldn't go that far, and this is where the jacked up meaning comes in, but no matter what I said, she is convinced that the walls in my home would be far more interesting and fun for a fly to hang out on, then in her home or the rest of the people in our family.It's a compliment, actually. That's exactly how I took it, and it made me laugh. If you're more from the creature of the Negative Nellie, you would probably take it the wrong way. You may see it as a slam about how you parent, what your husband or wife or children are like, and how you decorate pie. You would think someone was slamming your quirks.  Get over yourself! Laugh about it! You see, I am more then willing to admit that I am a raging goofball, a silly mom and one that has happily said I'm not a big fan of sleep deprivation with my newborns. I figure it's far better to laugh at myself, then it is to not laugh at yourself.  There have been many sillies that have occurred within my home with my sons, spouse and wonder pooch.Take for example my obsession of toilet seats.It has nothing to do with my love of plumbing, or the fact that I'd much rather clean a bathroom, on hands and knees, then have to iron 3 blouses. It has to do with the fact that we have three sons.Some of you that have been around for 3plus years already know that.You also know the way my mind processes things.The way I jump ahead in thought, about whether or not my sons will be embarrassed when they have their first teenage special dream.For anyone that is fairly freshmen here, it's not unusual for my brain to think up things like laundry, and as just mentioned, the laundered teenage dream. **note to self, include an extra prayer tonight to G-d thanking him for not giving us a daughter, because I cannot imagine what I'd have done to her, with my silly ways**You see, growing up with two sisters, two brothers, a Dad that prefers quiet time, and a very sacrificing Mom, well, pee breaks were rushed. It usually seemed that just before I had to pee, o[...]



Turned 36 recently.
I know some of you are not there yet, some of you are beyond in.
For me, it's part of the new drop down category on those multiple choice
questionnaires and forms that ask you to "select the box within your age range":
I'm in Box 3. I think.
Not sure how I'll feel about Box 4.
But just happy to have 36.
Enjoying it and not trying to stress about tomorrow.

Boys are wonderful.
Bigdog and I just returned from a "Destination Date."
A few days away while kids stayed with Grandma and Grandpa and Aunt and Uncle and Cousins.
It was so nice to privately get away.
Not too many people knew about it-
but not for reasons with what you may think-

Our worlds are so exposed this day and age.
Some by choice, others, not so much.

So it felt good to go the way of minimal exposure.
It felt good to just have some quiet moments on our own.

It doesn't have to be a big deal.
It just felt "nice."
To escape but miss being home and experiencing what has been explained as:
Ying and Yang.

It balances. So it works for everyone.
Even boys had a wonderful time away.
New experiences for us all.

The only one to suffer the most?
Our poor Marina.
We hired a dog sitter that lives close by. She'd spend 1hour per paid visit.
My sister and Brother in law also helped out.

We returned home and her face looks like it was beat up.
She was having an anxiety attack.
Welts all over her legs.
You'd think she had been bitten by Army Ants or something.

Her eye swollen and just looking all jacked up.

2 benedryl's later and amoxcillian for dogs,
she was fine.
The next morning.

Apparently it's separation anxiety.
Or "Hivin' Out."

Good thing is that Marina didn't need boarding, and as much as it must have been tough-when she was alone-when someone was here, she received 100% attention. The dog sitter even warmed up Marina's food with water in the microwave, but she fed Marina with a big spoon, on our couch.

Doesn't bother me.
What I mean is that it's okay for her to have been spoiled.
She deserves fun as well!
Only problem was when it came time for any of them to leave.
Too painful for her.

But, by the next morning, as I mentioned, she was fine.**

How are you?

* we recently became foster parents to two puppies. The boys named them Kitara and Zucko.
They are 13weeks and "ARF" rescued them from a High Kill Shelter in Kentucky.
I love "ARF!" We adopted Marina there. As you can tell, despite her codependent issues, she is truly Some amazing Little Girl! More about fostering the two puppies some other time.

this post has not been proofread or spellchecked.



There are so many creative ways with technology, to show your gratitude. But are they too cold?There are different online companies that will assist you with cards, calenders and anything you want captured and cherished. There's companies that will even send out the cards on the days you put into the computer. They'll take a copy of your "handwriting," and when they print the cards to be mailed out, they'll use a font as close to if not exact to match your handwriting. The most work you need to do is risk carpel tunnel syndrome or tendinitis by sitting down on your duff entering in all the birthdays and anniversaries for the online company to personalize and you're just about finished. Aside from making the payment, of course. But is that cold? Is it more valuable if you buy the card yourself and write out your thanks? Some people think so.I love making cards by using the different online companies. Naturally each one has different perks, and values.I think that if there's a good balance of old school and new, you don't ever run the risk of an ungrateful recipient.But keep in mind that for some people that you are so sweet to think of, will never be happy with whatever your method may be, so in the long run, does it truly matter that you send Grandma a card directly from the online service you used?It could matter. But the best way around this?Use your kids and pets as props.Even if it is still an online generated card, if you make your favorite little guys/gals and furs part of the thoughtfulness, even the oldest of old school Grammy can only complain about so much.Here's the one I made recently for thank you cards.Which I will also include a handwritten message in each one.Classic Scarlet Thank You 5x7 folded cardModern greeting cards and party invitations by Shutterfly.View the entire collection of cards.No, this is not a paid to post ad. This is just me showing you my card. You can actually create your cards and post them on blogger or other social media online sources.I just wanted to show you my creation, and also to give you a peek at how much our boys have grown.HAPPY NEW YEAR!LOVE,ONE CRUSTY MOM-E, BIGDOG DAD,JACK, SULLY AND BEN*and our Marina, too*[...]