Thursday, September 9, 2010

It's About Dang Time...

WHAT'S UP, MY LOVLIES?! First of all, I want everyone to know that I ALMOST put a bad word in place of 'dang.' Yes, my potty mouth doth run amok daily. I don't know why I felt compelled to announce that, but I did nonetheless. I realize my absence has caused many a sleepless night for some while others have rejoiced. Never fear, for I have returned to the world of all things cyber.

Let's's been over a year since I put anything up here. Much has changed. We've begun a new school year, Clem's deployed AGAIN (this time to Afghanistan) and we're all a year older.

Lilly has been going through all those awful allergy shots. That's a FAN-FRIGGIN-TASTIC time for her, I tell ya what. That reminds me, I missed her shots for this week. I'm on top of usual. She's in 5th grade and has the same teacher from 4th grade. That woman's a godsend. They know each other well enough that there aren't too many problems. And she isn't afraid to lay the verbal smackdown on my child as needed. (Let's face it. We all know that's a daily occurrence.)

Kay's in 3rd grade now and continues to be the voice of reason for her sisters. She's always eager to help me around the house. (No joke. She ASKS me if she can dust or vacuum or whatever when she's bored. Weird kid, but I ain't complainin'.) She reads to Alyssa every night before lights out. That's awesome. Not that I dislike reading to the kids, but there's always something that needs my attention more.

Alyssa's in 1st grade and is still the teacher's favorite. She got a 100 on something yesterday ( I don't think even she knew what it was.), and made it a point to tell her Kindergarten teacher about it. Her perspective continues to crack me up everyday. She really hates this story, but I feel it's necessary to demonstrate my point.

Back in February, I had been at Mom and Dad's hitting golf balls in the pasture. It was rather warm that day, and constant tee shots really work up a sweat. So I went back in the house when I was finished when Alyssa busted in the room while I was putting deodorant on. You know the drill. Hands up underneath your shirt while you're bent over a smidge. Anyway, the conversation proceeded as such:

Alyssa: Mom, what are you doing to your boobs?
Me: I'm not doing anything. I'm putting on deodorant. {Quizzical silence as she observes with a look of utter disgust on her face.} Why? What do you know about boobs anyway?
Alyssa: {very matter-of-factly} They are jiggly. {exit Alyssa through the door from when she entered.}

What am I up to? Started yet another year of school. Changed my major to general studies so I can transfer to TAMUCT (Texas A&M Central Texas) in the spring to pursue my BA in PoliSci. Then on to law school. I'd like to go to UT Law one of these days. We shall see.

What else is there.....?? Oh yes, Leighann got married in July. She married Skylar. They seem to be broke and happy these days in Utah. Goin' to school and workin'. Pretty grown up stuff.

Well, that seems to be all I have time for at the moment. Time for chow. Looks like breakfast for dinner. It's quick...ish, easy and doesn't warrant any whining and/or complaining from my offspring. And that's a good thing. Ciao, peeps!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Sometimes I Really Hate Life

I haven't been on here in a while for a couple reasons- school and Dewey got home in June. My last post was about the time I "knew" something terrible had happened to Dewey. He was fine, and my life continued.

Then, as I was getting ready for school Wednesday morning July 1st, I got the call that no one wants. My little brother, Joseph, was killed in a car accident in West Virginia. My little brother. Almost every memory I have in this life has him in it. What do you do when you lose someone that close? How do you cope?

When Dad uttered those simple words, I felt the world around me come crashing down. I knew there had to be some mistake. Joseph was strong and healthy. He couldn't be dead. I had just heard from him 4 days before! Even now, almost a month later, that thought seems so foreign and unreal. How can I not see him again in this life? I wanted him to be the one my kids turn to when they're older and hate my guts. I wanted him to play a very active role in my girls' lives. How can this be? Even during his funeral I was hoping he'd pop up out of his casket and yell something, in true Joseph style, like "HA! HA! GOTCHA, B*****S!!!" But he didn't. We burried him. And now he's gone for the rest of my mortal years.

I can't go into a lot of detail yet about the initial pain and grief I felt. I'll still break down, and that feeling in the pit of my stomach becomes almost impossible to bare. I found some comfort in Leighann's words in that first email I got from her, and I realized the importance and urgency of Dewey and me getting our sorry butts to the temple and being sealed to our precious children. I don't want to be caught in this situation and NOT be sealed to my kids. I'm grateful for Mom and Dad's faithfulness. Because of that, I know I'll be with my beloved brother again. And I know he's up there watching over my girls. He'll still be a part of their lives, just not quite the way I had intended. I know he'll watch them grow, and I know he's cheering all of us on down here to do our very best and live faithfully so we can all live together forever. I want nothing more than to be with my family for eternity.

What I've Learned.....

I've learned that I MUST tell those I love that I love them when they're right in front of me. I never got the opportunity to tell Joseph how much I love him, and I regret not doing so. I saved his last text message and will print/frame it with a picture of him. I know he knows NOW how much I love him, but it's not the same. I wish I had told him that I love him the last time I talked to him.

I've also learned how much people love him. His funeral was the biggest one I've ever been to. His procession was miles long. MILES! I didn't expect to see so many people, much less so many of them absolutely sobbing for him. He was truly loved and will be missed for a long time to come. BUT, I know the Lord has provided a way for all of us to be together again, and I look forward to that joyous reunion.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

One of the Scariest Things EVER!

Friday night I was in bed watching "The Cosby Show" with Alyssa. All of a sudden the cable skitzed out. It flickered on and off and eventually shut itself and the TV off. I waited a minute thinking it was just this stupid digital transition thing that was unnecessary. When I turned it back on, all was well....except for the channel. See, I had been watching TV Land, but my TV was now on ESPN!!! I suppose this isn't terribly scary to anyone.

I don't believe in signs, at least not of the digitally broadcasted variety. HOWEVER, I don't watch SportsCenter, either. Only Dewey does. My first thought was of him. Keep in mind I have ABSOLUTELY no way of contacting him when I need to. I have to wait for him to call me or get online. There went the rest of my night. I was laying in bed thinking of every bad thing that could possibly happen to him. When I slept, it was restless sleep because any dream I had was a terrible one about him.

Once the sun came up I decided I didn't need to freak out yet, especially in front of the kids, so I put it out of my mind as best I could. I had intended to take the weekend off from any school stuff because I'm actually a little bit ahead...for the time being. But I can't keep away from it, it's just not in me. So I came back here and got to work on some things about 0930. Then my doorbell rang. Who would be bothering me that early on a Saturday? My heart stopped dead in my chest and I felt myself go weak. I remembered the crazy cable thing the night before and immediately assumed I'd find 2 soldiers in their Class A's waiting on my porch with some really bad news for me. Then the kids started yelling about not knowing who it was, which, needless to say, only made things worse. I finally found the courage to see who it was. To my relief, it was a girl selling candy bars for a fund raiser. THANK YOU, LORD! I bought enough for each of the kids and went back to work.

I felt SOME relief for a while. I decided not to worry about Dewey until it was about his normal time to get online. That didn't last very long. Sure, I was engrossed in my school work, so that helped. But everytime I'd take a break (for a drink of water or whatever) I'd remember and try to get back to work.

"He's fine. He's always fine. He promised he'd be fine." Always what I tell myself any time I hear something bad about what's going on over there.

Well, 1530 rolled around and he still wasn't online. After I finished my stuff, I couldn't stand it anymore, so I got comfortable on the couch and stared at my phone. Stared long and hard at it, trying to communicate telepathically with him. I only moved to help the kids with something or to make a head call. Nothing. He had been online about 1530 the day before, why wasn't he now? I waited. And I waited some more. No news from 2 uniformed soldiers is good news, right?

I waited even longer, sending him a "Where are you?" message every 2 minutes. I finally got up and sat at the computer and signed into Yahoo Messenger and Skype thinking he'd be at either place. I waited some more. Nothing. I turned on the TV in here trying to relax a little. Didn't help. Everything was silly women who were completely out of touch with reality that had nothing to worry about but gossipping or something. Still nothing.

FINALLY, at 1803, he logged in. OF ALL THE DAYS FOR HIM TO WORK LATE!!! I was still so worried about him even though I was looking at him and could see how ok he was. I could see him smile and laugh and scratch his head and adjust in his chair, but I was still scared to death.

He finally calmed me down, and I was ok-obviously. Still scary. I'm not one to freak out everytime he doesn't call or log in when he says he will. And I'm certainly not one to think, "Oh my gosh, it's a sign. Something terrible's going to happen." either. But HO-LY COW that was definitely the scariest thing to ever happen when he's been gone. I'm so happy he's ok. I don't know what I'd do without him.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

The Last Month.....

The last anyone heard from me was when Dewey came home last month. Wow. There’s so much to tell, so we shall start from the beginning.

I didn’t tell the girls Daddy was coming home last month. Well, that’s not entirely true. I told Kay only because she had an exceptionally bad day and WOULDN’T calm down. So I ruined the surprise by telling her. Surprisingly, she kept it secret from her sisters. Anyway, when it came time to pick Daddy up from the airport, I told them we were picking up my good friend, Tracy, so she could spend the holidays with us. Mom didn’t understand why I didn’t tell the girls. Maybe I’m the most selfish person ever, but I wanted to see their utter shock and excitement. There aren’t very many things in this world that can surprise the kids like seeing their dad when they least expect it. We had a night where the girls cried and cried and cried some more because they realized Dad wouldn’t be home to spend Christmas. Needless to say, I got EXACTLY what I wanted.

I was late to the airport-and it’s only 20 minutes away!!! It was rainy and about 45. Poor Dewey. He’s acclimatized to about 135!! When I got out of the car to throw myself on him, his poor nose was like ice. I wasn’t late because I just didn’t leave on time. I was late because his flight got in right as everyone was getting off work. The fasted way over there is down 190…RIGHT PAST THE MAIN GATE ON POST!! Oh well. He got home safely, and we had an awesome visit.

While he was home, he BUILT me a new TV stand. BUILT it. Like from the ground up. Like we spent hours at Home Depot figuring out EXACTLY what we wanted-stain, wood, legs, etc. We spent 2 days staining it, and it turned out beautifully. He didn’t make any doors for it, but he will when he gets home. While Dewey built me a TV stand, I painted the girls' bathroom. I wanted to paint it yellow, but Clem wanted to paint it green. So we found a shade we could agree on. IT DIDN'T TURN OUT LIKE THE SAMPLE!! It's so bright that when the nightlight's the only light on in there it looks like something stratight out of "Ghostbusters." It looks like a neon green fog is flowing out of the bathroom. I call it Atomic Vomit green. Here's why...
It's not this light. It hurt my eyes at first. Holy cow.

Here's the TV stand from far away.....

And up close....with all our mess for the world to see.

He had to leave on the 2nd. That was a terrible day, but at least he got to come home. And I had someone to kiss at midnight on New Year’s Eve. When I got home from the airport, the girls and I went immediately to my neighbor’s house to be sad. Then we had to come back to OUR house. That was hard. As soon as I walked through the door I saw the dishes in the sink-the same dishes he had eaten off of that morning. Then I found his glass sitting on the coffee table, right where he left it that morning. THEN I turned on the TV for the kids…and it was on football. Again, right where he left it that morning. So I went back to my room to be alone and sad, and it smelled like he had just gotten a shower!!! And my sheets still smelled like him. I called the same neighbor, and she came over. Keep in mind I’m not a terribly emotional person…unless I’m mad about something. So for her it was a shock to see me so completely devastated. One of her favorite movies is “Napoleon Dynamite.” So she looks at me and says, “Knock it off, Napoleon. Make yourself a dang quesadilla.” I can always count on Rocio to make me laugh. So we loaded up the kids (my 3, her 3 and her 2 step-daughters) and went to the park. Then we all came back to my house for pizza and movies.

While he was home, we also did something that I feel is not only necessary, but long overdue. We bought a gun-a Ruger P-89 9mm. Yup, I’m officially a gun owner. Don’t worry-I’m also very careful with it. We got it from Academy. On the way in, Lilly told me I was weird for wanting a gun. I told her that I’d rather be weird than to ever have anyone come into my house and hurt her. She seemed ok with that response, so she dropped it.

Last weekend we went up to Mom and Dad’s so I could shoot Pete-that’s what I named my gun. (HA HA Pistol Pete) Anyway, I did ok with him, especially once I quit jerking the trigger. He came with 2 magazines, so I can keep a few rounds in each one and hide them somewhere in the house. Dad and I had our date at The Shootin’ Place. He threatened to smack me if I jerked the trigger anymore. Dad’ll do it, too. It’s the anticipation. You always SQUEEZE it. You can tell where I jerked it-under #1. The rest are just where I didn’t do so well. I'd at least let someone know they were in the WRONG house. School started for me again on the 12th. It’s only 1 class right now. My nursing class starts on March 9th. I like my instructor, and I think I’m following pretty well. At least for the time being. I actually have to go up on campus for this one, which helps. Dewey’s always on me about getting out of the house to do something other than run errands. But for now, this is my break. I get out of the house 4 mornings a week and am engaged in stimulating adult conversation. AND I’m being challenged. I’ve never been very good at math, but I absolutely have to be this time. It’s done wonders for how I feel about myself. AAAAAAAAAND I’ve lost some weight, but not because of school. Obviously.

That pretty much sums up the last month. OH, and Christmas was awesome. Santa brought the kids bikes and waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too much candy. Silly Santa HAD to go to Sam’s for the candy. We had some friends over and Matthew came up from Austin. I LOVE Christmas, especially when we're home. We didn't go anywhere only because Dewey's time was SO limited. We didn't want to spend it driving everywhere. So everyone came down on different days and visited. I enjoyed that, but hopefully we'll go see everyone THIS Christmas.
This is Zeppelin. He was a stray that one of my neighbor's found in the flower bed. So I took him and he made himself at home in my Christmas tree. This was at eye level for me-I'm 5'10".

Here's Lilly before her first choir concert. It turned out to be a play!! I wasn't very happy because the choir hardly sang!!!

I realized I didn't have any pictures of Kay up here this time, so I found this one. She's so beautiful. They all are. Maybe I'm just biased.

And I just thought this was too cute not to post.