The joys of a massage!


Today I have an appointment I needed to attend at 3:10, and so I decided it would be a good idea to just take off the whole afternoon. So what am I going to do with all of the time in between noon and 3:10? Well, there’s a walk and lunch with Mom, and then…a deeeeeeep tissue massage at 1:00. Having just returned from said massage I can tell you I feel like a million bucks!

I never had a real hour-long deep tissue massage before last year. With all of the stress of the divorce, I was suffering some really wicked headaches, and  friend talked me into getting a massage. OMGs…once I had it done, I instantly felt better. Muscles I didn’t know I had were full of knots and, while I was a little sore the next day, I still felt so much better. I haven’t had those kind of stress headaches since then.

I’ve been thinking about getting another massage all year, but I kept putting it off as I’ve been so busy. Just recently the knots in my back have become so awful that I finally went ahead and made the appointment. I can’t believe I waited so long…muscles that used to be hard as rocks are now soft and squishy, and no pain!

The lady that does my deep tissue massages also does hot stone massages. I think I won’t wait so long before I get the next one, and I’m definitely going to get one with the stones. It looks inviting, but I’d never heard why it’s any good for you. Apparently the heat in the stones helps relax the muscles faster so you can get relief from problem spots quicker while it relaxes you.

Hmm…I can’t wait!

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Football season again…there goes the schedule.


Younger's Jersey this year

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, it’s that time of year again. Football season has begun.

I have a bit of a love-hate relationship with football. The love part has to do with the fact that Younger Son loves to play, and I love to see him play, even though I don’t understand much of what I’m seeing. But more about that in a later post.

The hate part comes in when it comes to scheduling and supplies. The supplies part of it isn’t that terrible…it’s just another expense along with school supplies, registration etc. The scheduling is what really gets my goat.

As many of you parents know, we live and die by our kids’ schedules. Our lives revolve around what they are doing, whether it’s school activities, sports or work…or all three at once.  Parents need a Plan, not just for themselves for their jobs and activities, but the for the kids as well, so everyone is on the same page. Everyone has The Plan in their heads for the week and knows what to expect. Everyone who needs a ride will get one. All activities will be accounted for and attended. By the end of the week, everything will have gotten done that needed to be done.

Apparently, that doesn’t even enter into the minds of The Powers That Be who administrate the scheduling of Football for the season. Today is a good example. I’ve seen on the schedule we do have that there is a scrimmage today. Younger Son’s team is playing against the team of another city for a preseason practice.  I’ve been asking Younger every day this week, “What did you hear about the scrimmage? What time is it? Where is it? When do I need to drop you off and pick you up?”  Poor kid…of course these come out in rapid fire sequence in my zeal to solidify The Plan for the weekend.

Unfortunately the coaches refused to tell the kids anything until Friday afternoon. The kids have to be at the school before 8am so they can be dressed to play and get on a bus to go across town. Scrimmage will start sometime between 9 and 10am. Time to pick the kids up afterward is undetermined. It’s unknown how many games will even be played.

What the heck?!

So, I breath deeply, and evenly…this too shall pass. It will be worth it to watch Younger Son have such a good time. Additionally, he’s learning discipline and good sportsmanship. And, it’s only for two months more and then we have a nice long break until he joins track in the Spring.

I never thought I would look so forward to a nice long Winter!

So much going on…aaaahhhh!


Aaaaahhhh!!!

Yes, it’s been one of those weeks where everything is happening, but nothing of any importance is getting done. Between family being in town, being in the middle of changing jobs, still cleaning up after the bathroom remodel and now trying to get the house ready for company, I’m just about cooked!

The boys are out at the State Fair for the 2nd night in a row, I’m finally getting down to brass tacks and getting some cleaning done. It’s so much easier when there’s nobody here but me. As I was rearranging some furniture in the living room, out popped the printer I bought two months ago and just never did get installed. I keep telling Older Son that I’d get to it, but just couldn’t make the time. So, tonight, I made a command decision to just stop procrastinating and just do it. So, now it’s finally hooked up and ready to go. He’ll be pleasantly surprised when he gets home tonight.

I mentioned that I’m having company this weekend. An old friend of mine is coming to stay with me Friday and Saturday nights, and we’re going to the Sugarland concert Saturday night. It will be the last night of the State Fair, and it will be a good weekend. I’m kicking it off with a pizza party, and perhaps some margaritas…hmm…margaritas!! It’s been a long time since I’ve had a good homemade margarita….hmmm!

My kids are my parents’ best revenge


I had to get after Younger Son today, and now I feel like crap. I have told him time and time again how to do this particular chore, and he refuses to do it unless pushed

Facsimile of me pulling my hair out, curtesy of Google Images

and prodded, let alone do it right. Once he finally got going on said chore, I heard slamming of things, stomping around and nasty muttering. I’d had it…that was just the last straw, and I let him have it. I told him in no uncertain terms that this behavior was unacceptable and if he didn’t turn his ship around and sail straight, there would be consequences. He finally gave in, just did his job and got it done. Had he just done it to begin with, he’d have been finished a lot sooner.

Parenting is messy. It’s hard and mostly thankless, not that I think I need any thanks…I chose this. It was my decision to bring children into the world and part of that is following through to make sure they have the skills and knowledge they need to be successful once they get on their own. Teenagers being teenagers, aren’t going to blindly follow directions. They have their own thoughts about how things ought to work, and tend to be very black and white in their views. Things are either wrong or they aren’t…not much gray area. I remember being that way, and I am sure that my Mother has most likey just now fallen down in a giggling heap on the floor. I’ve no doubt that she has a detector that picks up on when my kids aren’t at their best, which triggers a manic laughter reaction. She did tell me once that my kids would be her best revenge on me. Now I find myself telling my kids the very same thing. While I can certainly wait to become a grandparent, I’m sure going to enjoy their kids exacting my revenge on my children for me (Muhuwhahahaha!).

What really chaps my cookies is that I had to be the heavy even when their father lived here. He rarely ever disciplined them, unless it was an extreme circumstance. Otherwise he was just the “good time” parent, and he had a tendency to do their chores for them, rather than make them do it themselves. Less confrontation and responsibility that way, you know.

The good news is that I have really good kids. They don’t get into trouble, they get good grades, and generally do what they are told. As things go, I could have it a lot harder.

Now the storm has cleared off and everything is back to normal. Hopefully things will stay that way for a while. I might take on the responsibility of having to be the heavy, but I sure hate doing it.

Drowning in Testosterone


Testosterone...it only looks harmless in the picture.

I’m a single mother, raising two boys ages 17 & 15. Generally speaking, our house is a veritable testosterone swamp. It’s all about video games, sports, boys clothes, and boys stuff… and boy issues. It’s so pervasive that when I recently renovated my bathroom, I found myself  leaning to a more masculine decor than I might otherwise have liked. My basement has become Older Son’s personal Man Cave.

Don’t get me wrong…I’m not a girlie-girl. I don’t like pink or yellow, unless it’s on flowers, and I sure don’t dig flower prints on my furniture. I don’t care for lace much, and don’t even think about trying to get me into a dress…unless it’s that really cool wine-colored celtic dress a dear friend gave me some years back (It rocks, thank you Hel’wyse!). As I child, I spent way more time climbing trees, riding my bike, shooting a BB gun and playing catch with my Dad than I did playing dolls.  Oh, I tried the whole hair and make up thing between the ages of 15 and 22, or so. Turns out I’m allergic to all that gunk that women put on their heads, so I decided just to go natural and quit trying to swim upstream. I itch less and it turns out it’s a very much cheaper way to live. I don’t know how some of these women support their make up/hair habits.

So, given that I am a tom-boy (still) at the age of 41, why would I have any problems with living and breathing in a testosterone-laden atmosphere? I guess it has to do with the lack of balance. I don’t get out with my friends much. I do work with a lot of women, but that doesn’t really count. These last two weeks, just about every time I go out with my boys, I’m meeting my Dad and my Favorite Nephews to go to some neat cultural thing. Not that I don’t want to spend time with them, but I’m starting to feel the lack of not having enough women around. My one fleeting moment of estrogen-wrapped fun this week was my Friday lunch with my friend Brea. It only lasted about 20 minutes or so, but we laughed, and chatted, and it was nice (thanks again for the bracelet!).

So, tonight the boys and I were to pick Dad and the Nephews up and go to the Dakota Territory Air Museum. They had some special shindig going on, with lots of vintage airplanes. Uff-da…another testosterone-soaked activity. I just couldn’t take it any more. So, when we arrived at Mom and Dad’s, I gave Older Son the keys to the van, packed Dad and the Nephews up in the back with Younger Son and wished them a good time. I stayed with Mom while they were gone and it was nice. We chatted awhile, and I helped her out with some stuff on the computer. There were no loud noises, no exhortations on why one aircraft/tank/weapon/ship/video game/computer game is better than another. There was also no arguing (I swear to the Gods my kids argue some times like old ladies fighting over who gets the better bingo card) and there was no COPS on the television.

After they all came back from the aircraft show, I took my boys out to supper and we picked up some movies. The one we watched tonight was called “Whip It”, directed by Drew Barrymore, which is a new release in video stores right now. It’s all about women’s roller derby. I loved it! So, I got to spend time with Mom, and then watch a good movie (it really was good…go rent it) about a girl who is coming of age and trying to be tough enough.

It was a good evening. I think the only thing that would have made it a spectacular evening is if Hel’wyse could have joined in. We miss you, honey!

Confessions of a Lead Foot Annie


Older son and I went out to run errands today. We ran to the bank, returned some unused home improvement items, bought some other home improvement items, and had a load of river rock delivered for the edging I’ll be putting up around the house. A very successful morning, but one that wouldn’t have been possible without getting in the car and driving.

Even though we live in a small town (approx. 37,000) our traffic can be hectic, and fast-paced, especially around rush-hour times like Noon and 6pm. My problem isn’t with the fast drivers…it’s with the slow pokes. You know the ones I’m talking about; the sight seers and looky-loos. The ones who like to take their sweet time and don’t care that I have somewhere to be make me cranky.  Those who are driving ahead of me, seemingly without a purpose really get under my skin.

Today, Older Son commented to me that I needed to have more patience with people. This was said after I complained bitterly that “Farmer Bob will not get the lead out, and get of my way!”  It was obvious to me that the aforementioned “Farmer Bob” had plenty of time to go and was just gazing about, not paying attention. When I’m driving, I seldom drive just for the fun of driving. I always have a purpose and a place to be, and god help other drivers if they can’t get the lead out and get going. By that I don’t mean that I would exact any sort of vengeance, except for the rare occasion I have to blow the horn at a particularly oblivious driver. But, let me tell you about the chatter that happens in my car. The vitriolic commentary coming from my driver’s seat,  directed at bozos on the road, is prolific and merciless. Of course, I watch the swearing as I usually have kids in the car with me, but I am pretty creative with my descriptors and directives.

I know that driving with impatience is not good. It’s not good for the driver, the passengers or the other drivers on the road. It’s a bad habit, and I’m in the process of trying to relax when I drive and tone down the invective a little bit. In the spirit of changing my ways, I’ve put together a to-do list of driving habits I need to change:

  1. Anyone and everyone else who just can’t get the lead out should not be addressed as Farmer Bob. I actually know some farmers named Bob, and they are neither slow nor incompetent drivers. This bad habit of mine came from living on the Prairie my whole life and having been stuck behind my share of  farm equipment driving down a skinny road. It’s slow going…ugh.
  2. Breathe deep and be patient with the elderly who can’t help but go slow. I need to remember that it will be me driving slow when I hit that stage of life. At least I hope I’m still driving when I’m old!
  3. I have been a bozo in some other driver’s estimation, at various times in my life, so I need to get off my high horse and cut other people some slack.
  4. Perhaps, instead of hurling insults at my fellow drivers, I should just hum a tune to keep my mouth busy while I’m waiting for my turn to go… even if grass is growing underneath their car for going so slow.
  5. I need to be conscious of showing a good example for my kids to learn from. I have one son driving, and the other one will begin driving a year from now. You know it’s bad when your kid tells you to have some patience.

Wish me luck…old habits die hard!

Frenzied before 8:30am


Everyone put on your seat belts, strap on your head-gear and put your tray in the upright and locked position. It’s going to be a helluva day, folks.

My Dad beat me to my house this morning, if you can believe that. He’s already measured my eaves troughs, and been in my attic. Gods bless him…I don’t know what I’d do with out him. It it wasn’t for my Dad, my house would most likely fall down around my ears.

The drywall guy has been here this morning already to do what little he needed to get done, and I’m expecting the flooring guy at any minute.   It’s been a crazy day already and it’s not even 8:30am!

That’s ok…By this weekend, I will be back in my house with a brand new bathroom. It will be nice to sleep in my own bed again!