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‘Tis the Little Things

Sometimes, romance is a new air conditioner.

After a brutal summer with a subpar air conditioner in our bedroom, it was clear that our air conditioner had reached it’s end of days.  While in many ways I am tough as nails, a little known secret about me is that you can defeat me purely with a temperature change. I despise being hot or being cold.  There is a sliver of self approved temperatures I can be comfortable in, but anything too hot or too cold makes me really uncomfortable.  I start to think I feel hot, and from there is sort of spirals in an OCD way to being all I can pretty much focus on.  Many a night my husband laid on the bed next to me and heard me comment “It feels really warm in here.  The AC is on.  It’s just so hot in here!” Now I’m sure y’all might that what happened next might be because he got tired of me constantly feeling too hot and commenting on it, but I’m going to be the everloving optimist and say it happened out of love and romance.  Ok, maybe a little bit of the tired of me commenting on it part may have been a SLIGHT factor.

Saturday night I asked him what he wanted to do yesterday, since we were both off work.  He responded “I think we should go get a new air conditioner”.

WOOHOO!  My joy was palpable.

Romance is not dead.  To a woman who likes to be comfortable temperature wise, these words fell on me like a soft down feather comforter in winter (with just the right amount of feathers, and not too hot of a comforter, mind you).

Off we set yesterday, on a hunt to find an air conditioner.  It’s common in the northeast to use window air conditioners to cool homes.  Trust, I’d love to be a central air girl but it’s just not in the cards.  Apparently it is also so common in the NE to have an AC unit that there were none around.  Well, unless you wanted an $850 unit that will cool your whole house that is.  We needed something much smaller and compact.  After hitting multiple stores in multiple towns, we found one.  I can’t explain the glee I felt as he loaded it into the car.  Nighttime comfort!

Romance isn’t all grand gestures.

Romance is working from home and finding a surprise iced coffee in the fridge he got from Dunkin while dropping the kids off.

Romance is texting me obscure movie clips or jokes because they are part of a private joke between the two of us.

Romance is driving by each other in two different cars and giving each other the middle finger at exactly the same time and then laughing the rest of the way home.

Romance is the little things.

I froze my ass off last night.

Romance is not mentioning that we were a little too exuberant with the AC.

 

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Going Home

home

Flights are booked!  I have been absolutely giddy the past few days now that are family trip is coming together.  It’s crazy to think that in just a few months I will be on a plane traveling to where I was born. It’s funny, I always consider it as “going home”, but when I am on my way back here, I also say I am on my “way home”.  I saw the quote I pictured above and it hit me how true this rings for me.  On one hand, it is hard to have all the people I love scattered around the world, but on the other hand, I am so very, very lucky to have those same people always there to welcome me “home”.

Home is where my house is, a house filled with mess and chaos, but also giggles, laughter, cuddles and intense love.  It is where my amazing husband and children are.  It is the bed I sleep in with my beloved dog snoring next to me in his bed on the floor.  It is where my cat lays sprawled in the sun.  It is the place where laundry gets away from me, and I grumble about the mess, but am grateful for a roof over my head.  It is where my local coffee place makes my coffee perfectly.  Home is running kids to gymnastics and sports, school, and for ice cream.  It is where I know I am loved and cherished.

Home is also about 300 miles away, where my dad and stepmother are.  Home is where I can go when I need to have downtime, to see them, and where I am told no problem is too big in life.  Home is seeing my first hero, who knows me and knew my mom better than anyone else.  Home is being spoiled a little bit as only a parent can, but also told when I need to get my act together, like only a parent can.  Home is their house on the lake, where I can go sit on their boat and drink coffee and have quiet time.  Home is fishing with the kids, going to the farmer’s market by boat, and eating fantastic food.

Home is the house about 5 minutes away from my dad’s house. We don’t own it anymore, and I struggle to visit it, because it holds so many memories, but I drive by anyway because it’s home.  Home is a house you don’t even live in anymore, but it contains the memories of the last time I saw my mom, memories of her before she got sick, and laughter…lots and lots of laughter.  It’s the place where my mom buried my cat Sam in the yard under the shady trees when I was too crushed to do it.  Home is where I spent time growing up.

Home is 3000 miles away, where most of my family still live.  It is where I was born.  Home is hearing “ey up mi duck” and feeling comforted. It is Flake 99, brilliant colored landscapes, and remembering that time when I attended school there and got chastised for not putting a “u” in the word color.  Home is sitting around the table with my aunt and uncle, nights at the pub laughing with cousins, who are the closest I have to siblings.  Home is where people know where you come from, know who you were before life took over, and who know all the family stories.  Home is where my cousin is, who flew across the world to stand by me when my father remarried because there was “no way I’ll have you do that without family there to support you”. Home is trecking across the emerald colored fields, with dogs at your side and wellies on.  Home is seeing a castle out the window.  It is the news shop that has been around since before I was born, where I got candy and bought magazines as a kid.  Home is going to the cemetery to sit by my mom’s grave and tell her all the news.  Home is seeing that orange monarch butterfly landing on my grandfather’s grave after telling him to “look after mum” after she passed away.  Home is having your mom’s cousins show up at the pub to surprise you, making you feel really special. Home is trying to get used to grandparents and older generation starting to pass away and feeling a bit lost now that they are gone.  Home is love. Home is various homes belonging to family members.   Home is the farm house I grew up in, no longer in the family, but that the current owners let me come visit.   It is the memories, the love and the fact even though I only get there once every couple of years that I’m stepping right in where we left off.

While I am not a religious person, home is also this church:

Melbourne_Church

 

This church, with it’s arches, columns, worn stone steps from centuries of use, and heavy wooden door, is a different type of home.  This is where my parents were married.  Decades later, on the same weekend, it is also the church where I got married.  It is where I was Christened, where family members have been married, babies Christened, and walks were taken. It is the keeper of many memories.  I still, after all these years, feel a sense of awe when I step through it’s doors.  I still remember midnight masses held there.  I remember the crunch of the tiny pebbles outside under my feet as we stood waiting for family brides and grooms to step out into the sun.  I remember my grandmother looking a bit like the Queen of England at my wedding, while she stood with my son.

Home is also the places we’ve traveled over the years where amazing memories have been created.  Home is Heinz field in Pittsburgh, where my husband and I take an annual trek to watch our favorite team play.  Home is the Red Parrot in Newport RI, where we head every year for an amazing meal with family (and where we ate on our honeymoon!).

Home is where the love is, where the memories are, where the people who make life special are.  I consider myself very lucky to always feel a sense of coming home, no matter where I go.  Of course, I always feel like a piece of me is elsewhere, and that is a bit difficult at times.  I am sad I don’t get to see my family overseas as much as I would like.  I am sad I am missing my cousin’s kids grow up.  I wish I was there more.  Hopefully, with planning and effort, I can travel there more in the future than I have been.

I can’t wait to go home…..and then, come home.

 

Looking Forward

They say a key to happiness is to have things in the future to look forward to.  It’s been a tough summer watching everyone on exciting vacations and with amazing experiences.  Know where I went to this summer?  Work.  I went to work, y’all.  And while I love what I do, it’s not a trip to an exotic location, you know?  What it is, however, is a means to an end, and that end is vacation.  I’ve kept relatively quiet about it.  There are seldom more obnoxious folks than those who tell you about their upcoming vacation at every twist and turn. (Honestly, nobody really cares where anyone is going on vacation, and frankly, if you’re constantly posting about it on social media, you’re asking to get your house broken into).   So, I’ve held relatively quiet about it, but as the time approaches, I must admit I’m getting more than a little excited.  We’re taking a family vacation to see folks we haven’t seen in a while, do things we can’t do at home, and attend a big celebration.  There will be running around, relaxing, and long walks in the countryside.  All things to be happy and looking forward to, for sure.  Best of all, we’re doing it all as a family.

Aside from my glee for that trip, I am also squeaking in a weekend at the lake, so I’m absolutely joyous about that as well.  I don’t even care that it will be a short trip.  A trip is a trip, and memories are to be made.  Then there is another trip planned out of state to attend a huge fair we go to each year. My new goal is less stuff, more travel!   Heck, I’ll sell some of the stuff to get out of town for a weekend!

As a kid, I got to travel quite a bit.  I’ve been up and down the east coast, out to Mexico, the Caribbean, Bermuda, England, and other places as well.  Travel had a big part in shaping who I am.  Travel really is the best teacher, and I am so grateful my parents were able to give me those experiences.  I look back and have memories of each trip.  I don’t remember all the toys they bought me, all the treats purchased over the years, but I do remember those trips.  I remember seeing things I’d never seen at home, tasting new foods, seeing picturesque beaches and tiny tin shacks that people called home.  I certainly remember getting sun stroke, burning my eyelids shut, and other mishaps.  I remember parasailing, and how close my feet looked compared to how far away the water was.  I remember the excitement every time I stepped off a plane into a new place.

I’m in a different financial place than my parents were, and travel with 2 kids in today’s society is a lot compared to what it was years ago.  That being said, I’m making efforts to taking my kids on trips.  Even if that trip is on the other side of the state for an overnight, or a quick trip to visit my dad several states away, we go.  We did Disney one year. (That was a hefty trip to fund, mind you). Every time we travel somewhere, I’m reminded how much I love it.  I’m reminded when we are on a car trip and the kids start reminiscing about prior trips we’ve taken.  I’m always amazed at how clear their memories are of the trips they have taken, and their experiences on each one.  They remember tiny details that even I have forgotten.

One year, my goal is to take them to England for an English Christmas.  I want them to experience the same magic I did as a kid over there.  I can’t explain it, it’s just a different vibe and feeling over there at the holidays.  It’ll be no easy task, getting gifts etc over there, but just once, I’d like them to have the same experiences I did as a kid.  We’ll have to see if it’s feasible in the future.  I also want to get my son to his first NFL game.  I want to take my kids to new cities, new towns, and let them soak up the sights around them.

It’s been a relatively calm summer.  At least, it’s felt calmer.  Outside of the normal 2 months of chaos, we slid into August quietly.  Some of that may be due to the fact I made some life changes to calm things down.  There comes a point where you have to cut back on the chaos, and I had to go through, see what was causing me stress, and cut it.  As soon as I made the changes, I felt calmer and ready to head into the end of summer. Now it’s time to start prepping for school to start.  This year will have some big changes.  Both kids head to new schools.  There will be bus schedules to examine, drop off and picks ups to work around, and supplies to be purchased.  They’re sort of bummed there is just a few more weeks of summer left.  I’m almost glad to get back to the organized chaos of fall.  At least some planned adventures are getting us all excited for the upcoming months.

Everyone deserves a written send off.

I’m currently working on possibly moving my blog to a new domain since my stalker has created fake accounts on this one to get notifications of when I post.  It’s ridiculous I have to do that, but such is life. In the meantime, I’m still going to post here, because frankly, this is my blog, and I’m not bowing down to ridiculousness. I’m even questioning moving it, because I simply shouldn’t have to.  All of that being said, I began this blog to be an outlet for me, to express my thoughts.  Yesterday’s event warranted this post, so I’m posting it.

Yesterday was a tough day, for reasons I was not expecting.  I found out an old friend of mine passed away.  She was only 49.  When you become an adult and your parents and friends start dying, it’s a surreal feeling.  Everyone still feels way too young to die, and honestly, 49 is.

She was one of my close friends for a while.  She could make me laugh until I rolled around on the floor.  We shared a similar, dark, savage humor, and could find the laughter in just about any situation.  She was my friend during some hard times, and she certainly helped get me through it.  I also got her through some devastating times.

After a while, she met a new guy, while still married to the old one, and the new guy came with baggage.  Lots and lots of it, actually.  He was bad news from everything I could see, and I did my best to warn her.  I warned her, I begged her, to stay away from him and all the bad he was bringing along.  You know how it goes though, some girls love those bad boys and their big promises.  Before I knew it, her behavior became erratic.  She became paranoid, angry, and was acting like a totally different person.  I knew she was on drugs, and it was doing some major damage to who she was.  The last “conversation” I had with her was filled with paranoia and anger.  None of it made any sense.

The fact is, I have kids, and I just can’t have that sort of stuff around them.  I’m also grown, busy, and tired and I can’t have it around me either.  These were hardcore drugs.  I also saw her doing some other things that seemed questionable.  I had to bail.

I’ve felt badly over the years that I bailed.  The fact is though, when someone is on heavy drugs, they just aren’t the same person.  No matter what I did, I never would have been able to rescue her.  It had to be her that made her choices to get better.  Nevertheless, I felt sad.  I missed our friendship. I missed the laughter, her good heart, and I wondered why it all ended he way it did.

She ended up running away with the bad boy, I think they may have even gotten married.  Last I heard, he had terminal cancer.  I have no idea if he is even still alive, to be honest. It all just seemed so sad.  Yesterday, I saw she had passed away.  The blurb is short, she was born here on this date, she died in her residence on this date.  That made me even sadder. It seemed there was nobody to properly eulogize her life.  She had been reduced to a blurb.  I sat at my computer and cried. Here was a larger than life soul and all that was there was a 2 or 3 sentence blurb about her birth and death, but the middle, where all the important stuff really was, was missing.  I tried to find a proper obituary, but found nothing.

Everyone deserves a written send off.

I am sad for the end of her life.  I am sad for the end of our friendship.  I know I had to end the friendship, but it doesn’t always make it easier to know she’ll never have a chance to get back to the her that she once was.  It feels like the death of a chance.  I hope she found happiness with her bad boy, even if it came with a lot of baggage, chaos, illness and sadness.

I can surmise how she died, likely one of two ways.  I’ll likely never know for sure, but it doesn’t really matter.  It is what it is, and it’s sad. I’m sad. The past two weeks have been a test of all my emotions, and this one brought the sadness.

 

Winter is Coming

I may be moving this blog, (I’ll explain why soon) which is sad to have to report.  If you follow me on twitter, let me know and I’ll give you the new domain.  You can also drop me a comment on here.

Details forthcoming.

 

Tired of nonsense

At what point do you say enough, and completely call someone out on their nonsense? At what point do you get tired of listening to someone spew BS to garner attention and provide a false narrative? I think I’m at that point. I’ve kept mostly quiet about things up until now (don’t want to feed the trolls mind you) but at some point you have to say to yourself “what you allow is what will continue”. At what point do you stop allowing someone else’s mental illness to wreck havoc on everyone?

How I Got Beat Up on My Daughter’s Birthday

This blog post contains adult language. I would say “inappropriate language” but the swears within are perfectly appropriate for what happened.

Consider yourself warned.

Yesterday was the little’s 8th birthday.  We had her party the day prior for family, but yesterday my husband and I both took the day off to spend the day with the kids for her birthday.  This in itself was a treat, as we typically have opposite schedules, and the kids rarely get us both for an extra day unless it’s a holiday or birthday.  We started the day off with gifts, then headed off to do what she wanted.

Aside from a quick trip at the Rec office, which is where in my last post you’ll hear about me yelling at a stranger across a counter, the rest of the day was on 8 year old terms.  Lunch was at Taco Bell, followed by some shopping at Justice with her gift cards, where she got to pick out what she wanted, and then off to the trampoline park for 2 hours of jumping and games.  The kids ran off to play dodgeball on the trampolines, while my husband I relaxed at a table.  I noticed some massage chairs and commented we should go relax after all our hard work at the party the day before and get a massage.

 

chairWe lugged our stuff over, and my husband sat down.  He put in his dollar, handed one to me, and I went to put my dollar into the slot. Just as my dollar slid in, my husband said “oh, OW! Jesus!” and he began to warn me that this chair was no joke…in fact, perhaps I shouldn’t do it because I have  bad back and it could be bad……

The chair gave zero fucks.

The leg massagers clamped together with such force I couldn’t move my legs.  I was nervous they might break my leg if they got any tighter. “Oh my God!  My legs!” I squealed.

The chair tilted back suddenly and hard nodules started pummeling my back from every angle. “ow, ow!  OW!” I gasped.

I couldn’t move though.  It had my legs. It was NOT LETTING GO.

Now, the fact I am really short didn’t help.  The chair was probably at some point trying to massage my neck, only I’m so short it instead punched me in the back of the skull repeatedly.  My head was bouncing all over the place and I began to laugh because the whole situation was so ridiculous. As I am getting punched in the occipital bone repeatedly, I try to look at my husband and the chair effectively punches me in the cheek.  My husband is clearly not comfortable either but is holding it together.  I hear him go “aaarghhh” and “oof” but he is leaning far forward to escape the beatings.

With my short little legs captured by the chair, and the position I was in, I couldn’t lean forward.  I was laughing maniacally, my eyes watering from the discomfort. The whole situation was ridiculous.  I was trying to have nice relaxing massage and instead wondered if I might end up in the ER.

Y’all, that was a long 3 minutes.

3 minutes of getting my legs clamped on so hard I feared a bone might fracture, while the back of the chair beat me like an escaping prisoner.

Finally, the legs started to release.  I thought it was over.

And then it happened.

The chair punched me in the snooch.

No lie, I got cuntpunched by a damned massage chair.

The level of shock I had was indescribable.

My husband saw my face open up into a look of disbelief and I stammered “It punched me in the snooch”. THE CHAIR PUNCHED ME IN THE LADY BITS. He helped me gingerly stand up and the two of us hobbled away like two broken beating victims and went to sit back at the table.  We couldn’t stop laughing.

I woke up today still sore.  My whole body hurts.

And that my friends, is how I got beat up on my daughter’s birthday.