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Wednesday, April 29, 2015

One of those days....

Today has just not been fun. Seriously.

It took me a while to even get motivated, but once I did I finally started working on my shower some more. Luckily, the tile on this wall doesn't have to be cut to size at all, so it went fairly fast once I got started. But, getting all of the tile work done is going to take forever and at this point, I just want it to be done. I want my shower back. But of course, once I get the shower done, we have to redo the floor - it's a neverending battle at this point.

(And in case you're wondering about the crazy tile - the light blue tile is what was in there originally. I pulled that off, and I'm putting it back. However, some broke in the process and we couldn't find the same lovely shade of baby blue. So we bought a couple of boxes of white to mix in with the blue. Rather than try to make a perfect pattern, I just opted to go with a random one.)

Once I decided I was done working on the shower for the day (as in - once I ran out of the mortar I had mixed) it was time to run to the grocery store for a few things. Right about then my phone rang, and I had to run and pick up a "sick" kid from school. I say "sick" - I think I got snowed on that one. Live and learn. We went to the grocery store, got what we needed, ran through the carwash and came home.

Once the other kids got home, the chaos just escalated - and boy, did it escalate.

Crappy attitudes. Temper tantrums. Whining. Fighting. Arguing. Slamming doors. Neighbor kids coming over to play and doing stupid stuff so that I had to yell at them too. Constant yells of "Mom!! I need _____!!" or "Mom! He said _____!" or "Mom! She _______!" One kid flipping another kid the bird. One falling off of a bed (after jumping on it) and getting hurt. Vomit. Weird bug crawling across the dining room floor.

Nights like this get to me. I know that they happen, and I know that they're inevitable, but holy crap do they make me feel completely and totally inadequate. I count down the minutes until bedtime, and I feel guilty because I'm not all mushy-gushy and "oh I love my kids so much and every minute is precious and rainbows and unicorns and happy happy yay!!"

Instead, it's "holy hell it's only 30 minutes until bedtime and then it'll be quiet and then all I have to do is get through the morning and get them to school and then I can get stuff done".

A big part of it is stress. The next few days are absolutely jam-packed with stuff, from track meets to a field trip to choir concerts to baseball practice to The Great Strides Walk for Cystic Fibrosis to the half-marathon, and I have no adult backup at all because The Dude is going to be out of town. I'm worried about making it to everything and attempting to stay sane, and then worrying about whether or not the house is still going to be standing if I leave the kids on their own Sunday morning while I go to my race.

For now though, I'm just going to chill. It's been a crappy night, yes. But it's not the end of the world. It happens. Instead of freaking out, I'm going to enjoy a glass of wine and some "baby oranges" (in a very worn and nasty looking - but clean - bowl) and listen to some music and play around online, and then I'm going to go to bed knowing that tomorrow is another day. And with any luck, it'll go smoother than today did.

Awesomeness. Lots of it.

The past few days have been crazy insane, but in such a good way.

I went to Oklahoma City and ran a (slightly more than) 5K leg of the Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon on Sunday. It was an amazing experience. The marathon itself is a fundraiser for the Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum that honors the victims of the bombing there 20 years ago. With over 25,000 runners, this was by far the biggest race that I've ever participated in, and it was incredible.

 I ran faster than I've ever run before, and amazed myself with what I accomplished that day. I ended my leg of the run with a smile on my face, and didn't stop smiling for the rest of the day.

But more on that later....

I got a ton of stuff done outside today. I mowed the grass (always a huge job), finished weeding the huge front flower bed, got some more flowers planted, watered stuff, got some more seedlings transferred out to the garden (hopefully these actually, you know, survive), planted some more flowers, watered stuff....you get the idea.

Baseball season officially started tonight for Daniel. We rode our bikes up to the practice field and on our way back, we got to see some wildlife that we don't get to see very often - at least not sitting still.

But probably the best part of the last few days....

Remember that memorial quilt that I was working on? It was for my friend's mother-in-law, whose husband passed away in January. I was given a bunch of his work shirts and pants to use to make a quilt. My friend gave me a basic pattern idea, we talked about various details, but for the most part I designed it as I went along. I was terrified that the mother-in-law wasn't going to like it.

After we got done running the race in OKC, my team and I went out to eat. We were sitting in the rocking chairs in front of a Cracker Barrel, waiting for our table, and I scrolled through my facebook newsfeed. There I saw it - my friend's post with pictures of her mother-in-law seeing the quilt for the first time. It was all I could do not to burst into tears right then and there.

Right there. It just doesn't get any better than that.


I know I've been nagging on my facebook page, but I'm going to do it here too just in case you missed it. This coming Saturday is the Great Strides Walk for Cystic Fibrosis. I am participating in that to raise money for research for a cure for this horrible disease that directly affects our family. If you would like to make a contribution, you can do that here.

But wait! There's more!

In order to encourage people to donate, I've agreed to do a couple of things.

For $1000, I will dye my hair purple (not the wash-out kind, either) AND I will get rid of my ugly rainbow-colored crocs that everyone loves to hate.

Seriously though - please help if you can. It would mean so much to me.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Could be worse....

Could be worse.

Those three words have been a sort of mantra for me for many years now. Funny thing is that it started as a joke on my first date with Ex1, because we thought we were going to see a country band and it turned out that we were wrong and it was some weird 50's band - but we decided that it "could be worse" and went with it.

Funny.....in so many ways. But I won't go there.

Today though. Today was a day.

It started out with my "low tire pressure" light coming on in the van. I didn't think much of it because I knew that I had a slow leak in one of my back tires. I went to the gas station, put some air in it, thought that it was odd that it wasn't really low enough for the indicator to come on, and continued on my merry way - about 30 miles.

I met up with a friend to go running, and when we were done, she looked at my van and said "um, you have a leak". I looked, and sure enough, my other back tire was almost flat. She followed me to a gas station where I aired it up, and then I stopped at another friend's house to pick up a sander, and then I went to the closest WalHell to get both back tires repaired.

As it turned out, neither tire could be repaired. The one that had the slow leak had a nail jammed in it too close to the sidewall, and the one that was almost flat this morning?

Ha. Yeah. Not sure what it is, but it's metal and it destroyed my tire.

I kept it as a souvenir, because I realized quickly that I was lucky to have driven as far as I did with that thing in my tire. I'm lucky that the tire didn't blow. I'm lucky that I didn't get a flat while out in the middle of nowhere with the kids.

Could be worse.

While I was waiting for them to replace both tires, the lady behind the counter and I chatted a bit. She made a comment about me being lucky, and I agreed as I was checking my credit card balances and doing mental math to figure out the best way to pay for the new ones. Then she said something that - I swear - it was like she was in my head.

"You're lucky that you can afford to replace both of them on the spur of the moment."

I looked at her and said "you know, a couple of years ago, you would have been scraping me off of the floor if you had told me that I had to replace two tires, because I couldn't have done it. I wasn't prepared to spend the money today, but I'm so grateful that I can even it it means things are going to be tight for a few weeks."

Seriously. I sat there, holding that piece of metal in my hand, flipping it over and over again, and instead of being angry or upset about it, I was grateful.

Could be worse.

Tonight..... we had Scouts. We left the house early (with our two shiny new tires) and got stuck by trains and/or malfunctioning railroad crossings 5 times. FIVE TIMES. It was insane. We ended up being about 10 minutes late for the meeting, but we got there. The boys all went outside to play while the adults took care of some business, and long story short - a window on the church got broken.

There were several boys - including mine - who were involved. There was chaos and panic and disorder and finger pointing and drama, but in the end, other than a slight bump on one head there were no injuries. It turned out to only be a storm window, and not one of the 100+ year old stained glass windows. There will be consequences and punishments for all of the boys involved, but in the end, they were all ok. Damage was minimal. A major learning experience was had.

Could be worse.

I seriously think that I'm going to take this piece of metal, drill a hole through it, and turn it into a key chain that I can keep with me all the time, just to remind me.

Could be worse.