Wednesday, December 26, 2012

It's a Dog's Life

I have five dogs, and I'm currently sick of five of them.  Any takers?  Let me describe them to you, and I'm sure you'll be bowled over by their charms and ready to drive right over here to snap them up before someone else beats you to it.

  1. Overweight black lab.  Her desire to jump on you is proportionate to how clean your clothes are.  Also related is how muddy her plate-sized paws are.  Very sweet and loveable.  When one is laying in the hammock relaxing, she does her best impression of a tea cup chihuahua as she attempts to nestle in the crook of one's neck.  So adorable.
  2. Half beagle, half unknown something, but quite possibly not canine.  Male, three years old.  Great with kids.  Playful, beautiful, sweetest, bestest dog we've ever had. Until...he ate the neighbor's dog.  Someone's getting snipped...
  3. Toy rat terrier, five pounds soaking wet.  Three of those pounds are his ears.  Annoying little snot face that peed on the Christmas tree and left little presents under it every day.  We couldn't even have a tree skirt. Yippy little sucker too.  I'm trying to think of something nice to say...I'll get back to you.
  4. Doxie.  Six feet long and two inches off the ground.  The authority of a drill sergeant but the self-discipline of a gnat.  When it's raining she refuses to do her business outside. She stands at the door and barks at ten second intervals.  I never knew dogs could tell time, but she's got it down pat.  She once jumped out of an upstairs window and sailed off the porch roof.  Her ear's kept her airborne for a hundred feet.
  5. Mutt.  Brown, stupid, somewhat lovable if you don't want a dog that has any semblance of a brain anywhere.  He likes to lay down in front of you when you're walking then when you trip and fall on your face in front of him, he looks at your like you're an idiot.  He also likes to stand in the middle of the road causing car accidents.  I keep waiting for someone to hit him, but they keep slowing down. No one's perfect, I guess.
One or more of these dogs ate my Christmas chocolate.  Numbers one and five are exempt because they stay outside, but two through four are likely culprits.  You may choose any of the five.  I know it'll be hard to narrow your choices down, given their high quality of breeding and training, so don't feel you need to limit yourself to just one.

Thank you and Merry After Christmas.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Dits and Toodles

Just a fly-by post today with some tidbits of this week:

  • We had strong winds last night and woke up this morning to find the dumpster turned over.  Chewie had a fun time dragging the trash over every inch of our property.  Did I mention we have ten acres? Never name a puppy Chewie.  Every time we say his name, he thinks we're giving him an order.  It's the only thing he minds us on.
  • On the way to Covington, we noticed a blown over Porta-Potty.  So glad I wasn't sitting in that when the winds hit.
  • I've decided to be more conscientious pay more attention to stuff.  I stopped in a gas station to buy a Dr. Pepper a couple days ago, and I made sure to count my change instead of just shoving it in my pocket as usual.  I was so proud of myself for being diligent and a good steward that I patted myself on the back all the way to the car.  Yup, I left the Dr. Pepper on the counter.
  • I got my hearing aid back... three weeks to the day after I dropped it off.  Seven to ten days, my foot.  And it cost more to fix than my first hearing aid cost, period.  But hey, it comes with a six month warranty.  Yippee skippy.
  • Found a great way to send annoying child to bed on time.  I start cleaning house and ask for volunteers.  Instant sleepingness.  The reason this is not a favored option is that I don't like my part in it. 
  • There's a dead animal in the chimney, or at least I assume.  I can't find it anywhere else and the smell is more or less in that area.  In desperation, I'm currently burning that sucker out with sweeper logs.  Either it's going to be cinders or the house.  One way or the other, the smell will be gone.
  • A little hint on decomposing animal smell - Febreeze only goes so far. It really doesn't kill all odor.  And candles?  They mingle and you get Decomposing Pumpkin Spice.  Not pleasant, and I'll never eat pumpkin pie again.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012


Someone in my house is an insomniac, but I'm not mentioning names.  This particular person came storming up to me last night as I was anxiously awaiting the results of who will be the very first winner of Abby's Ultimate Dance Competion.

She stands between me and the tv, blocking my view just as they prepare to announce the winner.  "I can't sleep!"

I fumble frantically for the remote.  Everyone has to have priorities, and mine is pausing the show lest I miss the announcement while my drama queen has a nervous breakdown.  Hey, it was pause the show or push the kid out of the way.  I think I chose the loving mother route. 

I found the remote and paused Abby in mid-mouth.  "You were saying?"

Fists balled at her sides, veins throbbing in her neck, she glared at me as if I personally played clanging cymbals at her bedside while tap dancing on her forehead.  "I. Can't. Sleep." She spoke through gritted teeth.

"Have you tried taking a warm bath?  I find them soothing."  In other words, go away.  She went away.

Five minutes later she was back.  "I don't feel any different."

I stared at her.  "You were supposed to soak in the tub.  Relax?"

"It was boring."

"Try reading."

She stomped to her room and I went to bed, secure in the knowledge that my favorite dancer won Abby's Ultimate Dance Competition.  All was right in my world.  Now, for some background, I also struggle with insomnia.  I used to spend hours walking the floors or counting sheep until the voices in my head would shut up enough to let me sleep.  Then I discovered the wonderful world of sleep-inducing drugs.  I'm now a big fan of my pillow and blankie.
For the first time in a week, I was dozing off blissfully without pharmecutical help when an elephant charged right up to my bed.  "I...can't...sleep...," it trumpeted. 

I gave her various ideas.  She hated them all.  Baths were stupid, reading boring books were stupid, watching tv with the sound off was stupid, and listening to music was stupid.  Want to know what was sounding pretty good to me?  A hammer. 

Does that make me a bad mother, to think of that?  It's not like I actually did it, right?  But a nice little knock on the noggin would solve both our problems quite effectively. 

Quite soon, she was curled up in the bed next to me, snoring contentedly.  I was wide awake, staring at her, still thinking of that hammer.

What Do You Write?

The other day a man asked me, “What do you write?” 

I opened my mouth to answer him before I realized that I had no answer.  What do I write?  He was waiting for an answer and my mouth was hanging open, letting flies in. 

“Uh, I write…” I swallowed, trying to think of the last thing of import that I’d written.  Does the annual Christmas letter count as literature?  I blog, sure, but doesn’t everyone?  And I’m fairly sure that, while my 503 Facebook friends absolutely adore my status updates, that doesn’t count as being a published author. 

I looked at the guy, still waiting for an answer, the darling patient man. Darn him.  “Crap.  I write crap.”

His eyes widened as he backed away.  “Nice talking to you.  Hope to see you around.”  Or not.

But I’m still a writer.  Sure I am.  It’s all in my head, just waiting to be put on paper.  What is writing, after all?  Black ink on white paper. 

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Heart Horse

My Heart Horse

As a horse person, I love all horses.  I love the variety they come in – so many colors, from the palest palomino to the dark bay, from glimmering white to black as sin.  I love the aristocratic stance of the Andalusian, with their flowing manes and tails, and I love the shaggy little Shetland pony in someone’s backyard.  Each one has a story, from the most expensive to the one not worth the cost of their hay.  And each one is priceless.

At some point in their life, every horse person comes across that one special horse.  We know that horse is going to be important to us from the moment we first lock eyes on it.  This is our heart horse.  Let me tell you about mine.

I answered an ad for a horse I really couldn’t afford – but if I could, he was in my price range – and in my excitement I practically sold him to myself over the phone.  The owner’s wife didn’t even have to say much.  Her answer to “how big is he” was “Not too little but not real big.”  My response was, “sounds perfect!”  When I asked about his personality, like, was he sweet natured, she said, “He doesn’t bite or kick or anything.”  “How wonderful!” I exclaimed. 

I really, really wanted a horse, and I guess I wanted one right that day.  I guess it could be said that I’m a bit of an impulse buyer.  I loaded the kids and the husband in the van and drove the thirty miles to see him, right that very minute.  I have to admit, my first sight of him was a let down.  He was a plain ol’ red horse.  Just…blah.  I guess I expected bells and whistles or something.  He wasn’t going to be my horse after all.  My heart drooped. 

But then, he heard our voices and he looked up, ears pricked forward.  The blah exterior was gone and I all I saw was his glorious white blaze between two alert, attentive brown eyes.  His neck arched and he shifted so that I saw his white stocking, a stocking so tall it ran past his hock on his left hind leg, ending in a jagged lightning strike.

The owner didn’t seem excited about me riding him.  “He can be a handful,” he warned.  I hadn’t ridden much in years, and as much as it shames me to admit it, I’d lost my nerve.  I’d been thrown by a crazy horse and had a second crazy horse run over me.  My faith in horses was shaken. 

But looking at this one, dancing around, flashing the whites of his eyes, he didn’t make me nervous at all.  He was upfront about being crazy, you know?  Not trying to act like he was normal and then taking me by surprise.  I liked that.  I knew we’d be okay, this red horse and me.  I climbed on his back, which was fun in itself, since he was turning in circles around the man holding the bridle. 

“You can let him go,” I said.

“I dunno if I should…”

The horse was wound as tight as a bowstring, but I nodded.  “We’re okay.”  He let go and the horse spun, ready to go in all directions at once. 

“Need a whip?” The man yelled.  Uh, no thanks.  I don’t think he needs any encouragement to go.  Geez.  We whirled our way around the yard, through rose bushes and pine trees and something else I sincerely hoped wasn’t poison ivy.  When we got out of sight of my sobbing children and hand-wringing husband (who was on his cell phone making funeral arrangements), I whoa’d the horse.  Foreign concept or not, he finally stopped…sort of…and we talked for a minute.  Then we walked….sort of….back to the barn.  Everyone breathed a big sigh of relief when they saw us come back into sight.  Peter gave me a nod, and we made arrangements to pick the horse up asap.

“We call him Blaze,” the previous owner told me.

I smiled.  “His name is Blitz.”

It’s been more than six years now since the day Blitz and I met, and I love him more every day.  He’s getting a little bit older, and maybe I am too.  His health isn’t doing so good, and only recently have I finally accepted the fact that he probably won’t live to be an old horse.  Every winter he loses weight and we struggle to put it back on.  He eats more than twice what the others do, but he stays underweight.  He has dental problems, high metabolism, and would you believe he has seasonal allergies… to grass?  He’s a horse, for crying out loud.  So andeasy keeper he is not.  I could not give him away if I wanted to, but that’s okay, because I have no desire to part with him. He’s my friend, my baby, and my therapist.  I would say he’s cheaper than a licensed therapist, but I’m not so sure.

Just recently, we’ve started to suspect that he has heaves.  This is horse speak for COPD.  It will continue to get worse each year, especially in the winter.  I’ve noticed his stamina is down, but he still loves to run.  As long as he’s happy, I’m keeping my boy with me.  When he suffers, though…

When Blitz’s life is filled with daily pain, and I know it won’t get better, I’ll let my sweet boy go.  But until that day, I will enjoy my time with him and treasure the years I’ve had.  I’m not going to try to prolong his life by keeping him in the pasture un-ridden.  He wants to go, he wants to run, and I’m going to let him.  The saying from the movie Steel Magnolias comes to mind:  “I’d rather have thirty minutes of wonderful, than a lifetime of nothing special.” 

He is my heart horse.  I knew the day I met him that he would be special, and he is.  When I open my door and call his name, and he looks up with those bright eyes and perky ears and whinnies his girly-horse whinny, my heart feels a tug.  So the next time he tears down the fence to take a midnight jaunt down the highway or breaks his bridle in the middle of a 20 mile trail ride or bites my butt to get to the carrot in my pocket, feel free to remind me of how much I love my sweet boy. 

Friday, November 9, 2012

Everyday Life

While I was looking for my old blog post about Pierson's flu shot yesterday, I had to read through a lot of my old blogs.  I used to keep pretty up to date on daily happenings on what brats my kids were, and I don't do that anymore - probably in part because they can read now.  It was fun reading through them, even though most of them were about who threw up and how many times on any given day.

Anyway, I think I'll start keeping things up to date with more mundane stuff here instead of just the really fantastical stuff, like how Blitz is the most perfect horse in the world, which you already knew, and when the dogs eat the furniture.

Today was a day. 

Yeah.  Definitely a day.

I had to take Maxie (doxie) to the vet to get her teeth cleaned.  They were some kind of nasty, and if we didn't have it done we ran the risk of the build-up getting into her blood stream and getting to her heart.  The thought of that sends me into a snotfest, so I made her appointment for today and had to have her there at 8am.  Poor baby didn't want to be left in a cage, but I left her with her special blue blankie and Scotlyn bundled her in her Sunday-go-to-meeting outfit, so she'd look nice for Dr. Stafford. 

After that, I decided if I had to drive fifteen miles, why not forty?  So I looped through Bogalusa to Franklinton to have the van looked at.  It needs a new tire.  But again, if I'm going to get one new tire, why not two?  Problem is, I'll have to order them because the genius that built the GMC Safari thought it would be fun to slap on some weird sized tires that no one's ever heard of before.

Came home.  Scotlyn needs help with math.  No problemo.  I like math.  She needs to know how to find the volume of a prism.  Problemo.  There's a reason I dropped out of college. 

Back to pick up Maxie - no time for lunch, but it smelled good.  Maxie was a good girl and didn't bite the vet, but she did pee on Scotlyn in the car.  I'll blame it on the drugs and give her a treat when she feels better. 

I left to pick up a friend's flat bed trailer to load hay.  Backed up to the trailer.  Went too far.  Pulled forward.  Too far.  Back.  Too far.  Repeat twelve times.  Cry and kick the truck.  Limp.  Hitch trailer five minutes after I'm supposed to actually pick up the hay, which is fifteen miles away.  Leave, forgetting to get the money to pay for the hay on myway through town.  Remember when I pull up to the hay barn.  Cry again.

Get hay from understanding man who must have a keen sense of woman on the edge.  He tells me a check is just fine, or I can pay him later.  Nice man.  I'm going to make him cookies.

Go home with hay.  Get lost.  On the way to my house.  Don't even bother crying again.  While pulling into the pasture with the hay, all the horses run out of the pasture hell bent for leather.  I don't even care anymore.  At least I won't have to feed them. Stupid animals come back, and I think of locking them out.  Unload hay, decide while I have kids to help me to put my horse trailer gate back on trailer (don't ask).  Drop the gate on my foot.  Again

Return flatbed trailer to friend.  Go to town because I'm almost out of gas.  Go to Winn Dixie for groceries.  Leave grocery list in truck.  Shoot from the hip and find Hershey's French Silk pies on sale - BOGO.  It must be a sign from God.  Buy groceries, load them in the truck, which had to go in back seat because the bed had a 1500 pound bale of hay and 300 pounds of horse feed that still has to be unloaded.  Can't wait. 

Fell asleep in parking lot.  Head home (after I wake up, not while I'm still sleeping).  Forgot gas.  Turn around.  Remember I have a diesel now.  Got diesel.  Came home.  Told the kids if they didn't do their chores (kitchen was nasty) they would never eat again and I think they knew I meant it. 

Hiding in room with no intention of ever leaving, even though my stomach is growling and I have chicken salad and fresh baked croissants just two rooms away. 

And Peter put in his notice today.  He starts his new job in December.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Pierson's Flu Shot

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

Today was Ainsley's 2 year appt at the drs. She's up to a whopping 26 lbs 6 ozs. What a tank, huh? The dr asked me if I wanted to get her the flu vaccine. Last year she was so sick I nearly had to take her to the ER, and Pierson too, on New Year's Eve. So I said yes. The dr offered to do all the kids.

And that was the end of my peaceful existence. Scotlyn started crying (wailing's more like it), Pierson climbed under the chairs and yelled that no one was ever going to give him a shot ever in his life, and Chad started laughing....until I asked why he was laughing about getting a shot. "What, you mean I have to get one too???" Yeah, that stopped him laughing pretty darn quick. That'll teach him to laugh at his brother and sister. Then he started asking how big the needle was. I would have loved to torment him, but Scotlyn and Pierson were listening too. I can't scar them for life........yet.

So, fast forward a few minutes, and Ainsley has gotten the shots I allowed and had her finger pricked. She stopped wailing and was reduced to an occasional sad sniffle. And she wiped her snotty nose on my shirt. And it's the others' turns. Pierson is still camped out under the chairs, assuming he's invisible. But since he's still yelling, we're pretty sure where to find him. I told the nurse it might be prudent to go by age. Chad smiles. Oldest first, I say. Like I said, he's going to stop delighting in his sibling's pain and terror.

So he is very much a wimp himself, but this time he didn't cry...quite. His eyes got really wide and he held his breath. Brave guy.

Scotlyn's next, and she's hollering like we were stringing her from the rafters, but she basically quit her snotting and slobbering as soon as the nurse was done.

Now....Pierson's turn. I move chairs, but he hangs on to them. I had to pull the chairs all the way out to the middle of the floor, and one of the nurses - yeah, one of them (they called in reinforcements) - held onto the chair while I tried to pry him away from it. He stretched a good bit before we managed to seperate them. (He's still bellowing, by the way.) I stuffed him down between my legs, clamped on to both arms, the nurse tried to grab one of his arms but she really got mine until I had to ask her to let go of my wrist. So, with him held down by me and two quite hefty nurses, he got a tiny little shot in his arm.

That's when the fun started. Once we set him free he tore out of the room, past the crowd that had gathered, through the waiting room, and all the way to the elevator, all the while still roaring that he wasn't getting a shot ever. (Sorry, dear, too late.) Chad corraled him and dragged him back while I checked out.

Then that nurse (I think she did it on purpose) said, in the children's hearing, "make sure you make the appt for the booster shot before you leave". Ever so cheerful. Witch. So we start all over again, with Pierson bellowing that he's never coming back here again, and he's mad. Yeah, really. News to me.
We make it to the car, and I make the mistake of trying to cheer the child up. Yes, I know, what was I thinking. I had the audacity to sing. "Rain rain go away, come back another day, Pierson Sam wants to play." According to Pierson, he does not want to play. Not today, not ever. He will never play again in his whole life. Did I mention ever? I think he's gets his dramatic tendencies from Peter's side of the family.

He falls asleep in the car. I'm not sure what wore him out. We get home and I offer to carry him in the house, but he gives me a rather scary look. I thought maybe sleeping he'd forget about being mad at me, but nope, he informed he's going to always be mad. He asleep now, but I'm sure he's still mad.

50 years from now, at my funeral, I'm sure he'll tell his grandchildren all about the day his mother made him get a shot when he was 4 years old. And he will still be mad.


Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Mama's Visit

Today my mama visited me.  We had a normal visit, where she assured me she didn't want me to cook.  Why is that?  I'm a good cook.

While we were at the restaurant (Mexican, my favorite), we had our normal conversation.

Mama:  Look at that girl's pants, hanging below her butt.

Donald:  Why are you looking at her butt?

Mama:  I can't hardly miss it.  It's huge. 

Please note that she's not whispering. 

Ainsley:  Who's butt, Maw Maw?  (in her glass-shattering squeaky voice)  I want to see the big butt.

Mama:  What do you want for Christmas, kids?

There's a various chorus of camo shirts, weapons of mass destruction, and pink ponies.  Notice that she didn't ask me, her only child.

Me:  I'd like a normal mother.

Mama:  That's not going to happen.

Ainsley:  I'd like a normal mother.

I tried to swipe some of her nachos and cheese, but she blocked me with some kungu fu move. 

Me: I gave you birth, now give me some cheese.

Ainsley:  No.

Me:  I'm taking back your birth.

She shrugged.

Mama laid her credit card on the table, which was irresponsible of her, soI took it. 

Mama:  Give that back.

Me:  This is my allowance.  You're 25 years behind. 

Mama:  I'm going to take back your birth if you don't give me back that card. 

She has issues and needs therapy. 

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Double 16 Hunting Club Trail Ride 2012

Here's a recap of today's events, from my perspective.  I have to write them down now, before my aches and pains overcome me and I'm immobile for the next two weeks. Thank you, Blitz.

I chose to ride my sweet boy for today's ride.  As you may know, sometimes Diva gets cranky and kicks at other horses, and I thought Blitz might make a more relaxing ride. 

On the way to the hunting club, I got stuck behind the granddaddy of watertubs being carted down the street on a flat bed semi truck, and was reduced to going 30mph, which had me running a bit late.  When I stopped to pick up drinks for the trip, I loosened Blitz's rope and fed him in the trailer.  (There's a point of telling you this, I promise.)  When we got to the campground, I noticed the trailer rocking just a bit, but it wasn't until I parked that I realized why.  Blitz took that rope I gave him and hung himself with it...nearly literally.  He'd turned himself around in the trailer, the better to see the other horses with, then tried to right the situation, and, well...

So.  I unload him, or he unloads on me, whatever.  I tied him.  He swished to the left, he swished to the right.  He bugled in my ear.  I'm now deaf, thank you so much, you donkey's rear end.  I made an attempt to brush him, gave up, and threw the saddle at him - yes, at him.  It was the best I could do, short of a cattle chute.  Sweet boy was no more and poster child for adhd was in fine form.  "A horse!  Another horse!  I want to say hi.  HI!  A wagon!  A mule?  I don't like mules."  Lays ears back and snorts.  "A mare in heat!  Heeeeyyyy, baby!  I got what you want!  Well, I don't, but whatever."

I tried to get on him, and I hope no one has that posted on YouTube yet.  Eventually successful, we pranced, danced, and sashayed our way to the front lines, where I repeatedly apologized for our existence.  "He's not normally like this, honest.  He's normally very calm."  LIAR!

Setting off, I met two  new best friends, Angel and Eunice, that were luckily riding mares in heat. Blitz was happy to have two new girls, and I was happy to have someone to talk to.  Blitz was just this side of behaving, which is actually model behavior for him.  I didn't even fall off once, but Angel did.  I did NOT throw that rock!  She's okay, just hurt her finger.  (I didn't get it on video.)  :(

Stopped for lunch only four hours later.  Blitz is tired you say?  Au contraire, you silly person.  I tied Ritalin-overdosed boy to a tree (he can't hurt a TREE, right?!) and took a break.  Big mistake.  Huge.  I didn't even get the first bite of my sammich in my mouth before I see people chasing a familiar looking red horse.  Darn if he didn't look just like Blitz, who always stands tied perfectly.  And the tree is empty.  Huh.

"Always bring a halter on a trail ride, and never tie a horse with the reins."  Yeah, got that.    I figured it out as I held my new leather bridle in five different pieces, and only one of them was attached to my horse, who didn't look the least bit repentent.  A leather tie and some duct tape later, and we were back in business.  Remember, fellow rednecks, duct tape fixes anything.

Back in the saddle, which I was still excited about, believe it or not, and we were off.  I never got to eat that sammich.

Three hours later....

Where's my cell phone?  Somewhere between lunch and that moment, I'd lost my cell phone.  I'm gonna die.  This trail ride is no longer fun and I want to go home, where my phone will magically be waiting for me.  I need to Facebook that I lost my phone.  Oh wait, I can't, because I don't have my phone!  Life as we know it is over.

It gets better.  We round a curve to find a group of people and horses coming toward us.  "We're going the wrong way.  We have to go all the way back to the rotted tree stump and start over."  Uh uh.  My butt hurts, my knees hurt, my stomach is churning because someone won't stop bounce bounce bouncing, and I'd rather die than ride one more step.  Just call 911 and medivac me out of here.  I'm done. 

We got back to camp.  The food was to die for - spare ribs, nanna pudding, some other stuff, but who cares.  I was going to stay for the hayride and all, but since my kids couldn't contact me, I headed home.  It was almost dark already, and guess what?  No trailer lights.  Such a nice surprise.

This is my life, people, and you can't have it.  But you'll be real proud of me cuz when I got home I tried to back my trailer into it's spot and all I hit was the fence, a tree, and the boat.  I didn't hit the house or the van! 

I also didn't back it up.  It's still in the front yard. 

Sunday, October 14, 2012

I Never Exaggerate

I've been accused of the crime of exaggeration.  I don't know why, because it's blatantly untrue.  The person that started this vicious rumor is just mad, I think, that my horse is so much more wonderful and amazing than her horse.  It's just jealousy. 

She should be jealous, and I'm about to tell you why. 

I spent the day with my very favorite guy yesterday.  Peter and the kids tagged along, too.  We went to my mother's house and got ready for a day on the trails, but something more exciting caught our eyes.  Sitting right there in my parents' side yard lay a huge, ginormous, sixty foot long casualty of Isaac.  My favorite guy and I walked around the colossal testament of the storm's mighty force and eyeballed it, hmm hmming and tsk tsking.  We wandered across the driveway, sized up a good path, and made a run for it, dodging out-of-bloom azalea and wisteria bushes until we reached It.  A brief hesitation while he checked his stride, then Blitz soared, up and over. 

We touched the clouds. 

When Blitz's hooves (freshly shod and adorable) touched earth again, we made a circle and went back for another turn.  The second time was even better than the first.  No horse could jump higher than my horse.  Olympic riders should be embarrassed if they could see how much better we were than them, and on the first try, too. 

I went to the back porch where my parents were sitting, drinking iced tea as all old southern people are wont to do.  "Did you see that?  We just jumped that!  It was at least ten feet high!  We could be in shows!  We could be in Olympics!  Where's your camcorder?  You've got to record this so I can put it on YouTube!"

They didn't move, except Donald took another sip of tea and rocked his chair on it's back legs. 

"Mama?  Come on! You gotta come see us jump!  I coulda died and it was totally cool!"

She fanned herself with her visor.  "It's warm today, isn't it, Donald?  I hope it cools off before the fair next week."

"Ayup," he says. 

Hellooo?  Where's my fan club?  I take a new tact.  "Mother.  Don't you want to watch me jump that huge tree in the side yard?  I could fall and break my leg or die and you could have it on video." I figure that would inspire her to get up.

"It's just a log, Kerri."

Monday, September 24, 2012

Good Mom/Bad Mom

I used to be a wonderful mother.  I don't just mean good, I mean truly wonderful.  I made no mistakes and I had all the answers.  I knew exactly what to do in each situation with a child.  Was the child simply being childish and needed to be instructed?  Was the child just tired and needed a nap or hungry and needed to be fed?  Or was the child just flat out beyond help and needed to be locked up in a padded room for the safety of self and others?  My nephew usually fell into that category, but he still held a large portion of my heart - proof that I'm a saint. 

Like I said, I was a wonderful mother.  Then I had my first child, and I became a good mother.  We had a few glitches, like the time my angel baby drank the lawnmower gas. He wasn't being disobedient or anything, because I had never thought to tell him not to; I just assumed he had the sense God gave a goose.  I thought wrong.

He never got away with a thing, let me tell you.  I was strict like you wouldn't believe.  He couldn't even look at me cross-eyed and I was all up in his grill.  "Don't look at me in that tone, boy.  You will show me respect.  I'm your mama, hear me?"  He heard me.  The whole neighborhood heard me.  He still painted his carpet green and blue.

But he was a good child.  Never gave me a moment's worry, aside from the annual visits to the emergency room every January, three years running.  After that, he wasn't allowed to run, jump, or even leave the house from New Year's until February first every year.

Then came baby girl number one.  Blond hair.  Big blue eyes.  Awwww.  Great big lungs.  Bad temper.  My good mother methods were not quite as effective with this one.  One day I'd had it up to *here* with her, and I took her by the arm and hissed (we were in public and you know how I hate to make a scene), "That is ENOUGH."  She gave me a look that sends shivers down my spine to this day.  "No, YOU are enough," she says.  And the beating commenced.  It took some doing, but I won.  She got some good licks in, though. 

Child three, a bouncing baby boy, came along, and he followed the rule book on happy children.  What a joy!  And that sweet smile!  All you had to do was look at his sweet self and he'd break into gales of laughter.  What a relief after the aforementioned child that gave the exorcist nightmares, to have a sweet little angel.  I would raise this one to adulthood with no problemos whatsoever, yes I would. 

He turned three.  One day, while wearing his 'Piderman costume, he threw his 'Piderman hood/face at me, told me I had stinky feet, and hasn't liked me since. 

Child number four came out somewhere between the stinky feet incident with child number three and the exorcism of child number two.  Four - a girl - got fed once in a while, and her diaper was changed.  On a good day, she was clothed, but it was a rare event.  It's a good thing she was bald as a balloon, because at that point I had no further desire to earn my Wonderful Mama award, or even a Doesn't Totally Suck Mama award, and would never have found the time to comb it. 

I'm not sure if she was a good baby or not.  That time period seems hazy to me.  What I know is this:  in three days, that child will turn ten years old.  And I'm not sure she's going to make it.   I may have slacked off a little to much in the discipline department with that one.  For ten years, it's been a litany of "eat your veggies.... no you may not have a snack because you did not eat your dinner.  I don't care if it was yucky.  There are starving children in Ethiopia that would love to have it.  Because I can't just mail it to them; I made it for you....... go to bed...... stop whining............ stop arguing......... stop kissing boys you're only five for crying out loud............. I said go to bed already................ if I said no to a snack, it means no cookie.  Yes, a cookie does count as a snack.  Well, then, no dessert either.  Because I said so.  God made me the mama......"

And today's conversation is a nice one.  "When's the last time you brushed your teeth?" 

She thinks for a minute.  "Mrs. Sam made me when I spent the night with Dani."

Facepalm.  I totally suck.  "That was last week!"

"But it's only Monday."

I always thought I was a stubborn person, but she's more stubborn.  She's wearing me down.  I can feel it.  After ten years of her badgering me, day in and day out, I've found my life is much more peaceful if I just let her have the cookie. 

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Yesterday, Scotlyn and I saw an alligator on the way home from town. 

No big deal, really, considering we live in southern Louisiana, but I'll admit to it being excited.  Scotlyn was overjoyed and wanted to bring him home as a pet.  Do you see this big boy?  He's far enough way to not measure him, but I'd put him at no less than six feet.  No thanks. 

After posting the picture on Facebook, Chad called and wanted to know where we'd seen him.  I told him off the road about two miles from our house, just on the other side of the river we live close to. 

"Now you know you have gators," says Oh Wise One.

"Of course there are gators down here, but they aren't in our lake."

"Of course not."  I detected sarcasm.  "They stay on the other side of the river."

"This was an itty bitty swamp right by the river.  We live a mile from the river, and our lake is big.  Big lakes don't have gators."

"Lake Placid." 

Did I raise this boy?  Did I bring him into this world to have him treat me like this?  I'm pretty sure I put my best effort into having a Mama's boy, and look how he turned out.  Where did I go wrong?

Here's another example, from a couple years ago (and also a prime reason I no longer believe in having fun with my children):

I took my children tubing, thinking they would enjoy it.  Pssshhh.  While on the river, a storm began brewing.  Lightning struck in the distance and thunder rumbled, but there was nowhere to leave the water.  The banks were high and covered in trees and vines and the such.  We were more likely to get snake-bit if we got out than lightning-struck if we stayed in.  So instead I had to endure this for two hours.

Ainsley screaming bloody murder, trying to drag me from my tube with dagger-sharp nails.  She would not be reassured that the storm was miles away.  It wasn't even raining.  Scotlyn was worried but not to the extent of gnashing of teeth.  She was also more upset that she didn't have her mp3 player with her and she could have gone to Karis's house if I'd told her it was going to storm.  For the last time, I'm sorry.

Pierson hunkered down for the duration, staying as far away from the ear piercing shrieks as I would allow. 

Then there was Chad.  Chad stayed close.  Wasn't that sweet of him, to help me out with the fearsome child?  Hmmm.  After a short time (hour, hour and a half, who's counting) I had her down to a dull roar of worries when the next rumble of thunder sounded. She shuddered, but held still.  My brave girl.

Chad, my first born, the "man" of the house while his father was away, took it upon himself to sing to her in her time of need.

"We're all gonna die.
No one will find us,
cuz we're all gonna fry.
The lightning's gonna hit us,
And we're all gonna die."

Every. Single. Lightning. Strike.  He sang that song. She shrieked.  He sang louder.

He's still alive, which just proves the power of a mother's love.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Is It Okay to Be Mad at God?

Answer this honestly, do you think it's okay to be mad at God?  This question was asked in Sunday School today, and we had a pretty even response on yes, no, maybe, and I don't know.  I was so confused I answered yes AND no.  After hearing the high school girls giving their arguments supporting their opinions, I was swayed both ways.  I guess that makes me impressionable, huh?

In order to go further, I need to flash back to earlier in the week.  We are reading through the Bible in a year, and this week we read in 1 Corinthians.  Part of what we read on Tuesday were the verses about God never giving us more temptation than we can handle.  They've been turned into the common saying of "God doesn't give us more than we can handle".  I've heard that saying many, many times, but that day, for some unknown reason, the verses brought back a vivid memory.

I was standing in my mother's driveway the day after my brother's death.  (Keep in mind that this was more than 20 years ago, but so many things this week have happened this week that have made me think that I'm supposed to share this story.)  I had come out of the house, just to escape from the walls closing in on me.  The driveway was as far as I got.  I stood there, realizing I had nowhere to go, nowhere to turn.  I looked up, and I got mad.  You're not supposed to get mad at God, you know,  but I couldn't help it.  It was simmering, way down deep, and it was starting to boil up.  I could feel it rising. 

My fists were clenched when the forbidden thought entered my mind.  Why didn't God stop this?  I wasn't walking with God at that point in my life, but I believed - I've always believed.  My brother had a lot of problems - way too many to handle.  And they just kept piling up higher and higher, one thing after another: financial, family, health.  God should have taken some of them away.  Why didn't He?  Why did He just stand by and let Shawn kill himself?  What kind of God does that?

Right there, in the midst of my forbidden anger, my Uncle D came up to me.  He's one of my favorite people in the world, and he's a godly man.  I lashed out at him.  "Why did God do this?  Why did he give Shawn more than he could handle?"

I figured Uncle D would give me a look of disappoint or disgust and then rain hellfire and brimstone down on me.  Instead, he looked at me with the compassion of Christ and said, "I don't know all the circumstances, but I do know that God gave Shawn other paths to take, and Shawn didn't choose them." 

When I showed anger to God, he showed me mercy, and he put one of His people in my life exactly at that moment to answer my question.  I can't say I gave my life over to Him then, but I will say that it made me think more and think deeper.  It started me on the road.

So, can we be angry with God?  I think whatever true feelings we have, God wants us to share.  He made us, right?  So He gets it.  But we need to deal with our feelings and realize that He is God.  He knows better than us, and He has a plan.  We don't have to see it or understand it to trust it.

No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.  1 Corinthians 10:13

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Not at My Grandma's House

Scotlyn has a new saying:  "Not at my Grandma's house, you don't!"  I have no idea where she comes up with this stuff. Her mind must be a scary place.

Anyway, on the way home from church, and I have no idea why, she told me that. 

I'm very mature, so I responded with wisdom.  "Oh, yeah?  Well, your grandma doesn't want you coming to her house, because she says you don't behave right."

"I behave better than her."

She has a point.  Have you met my mother?

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Yardwork Is of the Devil

I hate lawnmowers, and lawnmowers hate me.  I now have more lawnmowers than a body ought to own, and how many work?  Go ahead, hazard a guess.  Well, it depends on your definition of "work". 

For example, our riding mower "works" if you don't mind jump starting it nine times out of ten, which will almost always require pushing it up the hill to the car. We have a battery charger....somewhere.  And it has a big honking deck, since when we bought it we had five acres to mow, so it has three blades.  Right now, the middle blade doesn't work.  No, I don't know why, and I'm not picking the thing up to find out.  That's man work, and my man is convienently located in the middle of the ocean while my grass grows up to my elbows.  And I can't load it up and take it to a mower-fixer-person because it's stinking BIG.  I'm a girl.  I should not sweat.

Our new yard has lots and lots and lots of trees and bushes and stumps and rocks and roots and decks and half buried cinder blocks and other fun stuff in it, so I thought it prudent to buy a push mower at the beginning of spring.  I never expected to actually have to use it.  That's man work, right?


That darn husband of mine thinks working 90 hours a week exempts him from mowing the yard.  The nerve.  So my sweet daddy comes to mow the yard for me.  I was hoping this would be a weekly thing, but he turned 70 in April and got lazy on me. By the time I actually have to break out the new mower from the box to find out it doesn't work, it's too late to take it back.  I wasn't too terribly upset because I didn't really want to mow anyway.  I used the riding mower and the yard had some paths in we could walk on.  It resembled one of the alien mazes that appears in cornfields overnight.  You know what I'm talking about?  No aliens were responsible for that; it was all me.  I beat the aliens at their own game.

Well, now that we've spied snake number eight for the summer, and he was knocking on our back door, I thought it would be a good idea to just go ahead and buy another mower.  I've already called a professional service to see if they would do it.  The owner knows me and knows our yard and he won't return my calls.  I'm sure it's just an oversight.  But anyhoo, since he must be booked, I bought a new mower yesterday and started on the front yard.  It wasn't so bad.  I got it finished a bit ago and turned to the side yard, betwixt the house and the lake. 

The grass there is at least knee high, and in places up to my shoulders.  My new mower, sarcastically called a Brute, took one look, shuddered, and died.  I walked over to my rider and decided I'd tried to smoosh the grass down, if nothing else, with that.  Here's the list of grievances I know hold against "Troy".

  • Four flat tires
  • Dead battery
  • Blades don't work
  • Wet seat
I obviously did not think this "dream house" thing through all the way.  Did I mention that Diva has taken to LAYING against the fence, trying to push it down.  So much for a fancy fence.  I have barb wire horses, I guess.  It's the only thing they respect.  Stupid fence, stupid horse, stupid yard.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Family Government

Recently, my fourteen year old daughter took part in a civics class called TeenPact.  It ended with a weeklong trip to Baton Rouge, where she got to spend the week learning all about how to draft bills and turn them into laws.  Her father and I are so very proud that she is now showing interest in something (anything!) besides dancing, horses, and Luke Bryan, but take last night as an example of what we have to put up with...

Scotlyn has always liked a calm atmosphere, which must really suck if you live in our family.  So, after listening to X-Men on surround sound while trying to do her math (yes, I make her do math in the summer) and breaking three pencils in frustration and stabbing herself in the knee twice, she asked to be excused to work on a project.  Sensing I was the next to be stabbed, I agreed.  She came back with:

A Bill to End Useless Noise

Purpose: To make a quiet environment for easier learning.
To do away with loud distractions during times of learning.


Section 1.
It shall be unlawful for any loud, distracting noises to be going on during any time of schooling, unless it is a part of the learning process of the curriculum.

Section 2.
Any of these loud distracting noises include the following: movies, music, talk radio, football games, screaming at football games, singing, whistling, television shows, clapping, talk radio, talking to self, slamming doors, mumbling under breath (I had her add that - pet peeve), and TALK RADIO

Section 3.
Violating this act will be punishable by the following: having to listen to Justin Bieber's music for one entire week, being doused completely with elephant urine, spending a year in prison, being restrained from the jacuzzi tub, fine of $100 (payable to Rep. Skeeter Whitten), having all of your flashlights taken away, and being thrown to the alligators at Insta-Gator.

She lined us up on the couch upstairs, called us to order (which means we aren't supposed to speak), and named me speaker of the house.  I like to talk, so that's cool. She proceeded to the read the bill to us.

She didn't even get all the way through when Peter looked at me.  "You put her up to this.  I know you did."

"What's the deal with elephant urine?" Pierson jumped off the couch and yelled.

"You, sir, are out of order!" Scotlyn glared at him with Slitty Eyes of Death. 

Peter tried to explain what "doused with elephant urine" meant.  Ainsley jumped up.  "I don't want to get pee'd on by an elephant!  It's bad enough when Scooby does it!"

"People!  Sit down!  You're all out of order!"  Scotlyn/Skeeter points at me.  "You're supposed to be the Speaker.  You give them permission to speak." 

"They don't seem to need it," I point out.

Peter raises his hand.  I gave him permission to speak, and he addresses the Lady At the Well.  "Do you have a problem with talk radio, young lady?" 

"I'm not 'young lady'.  You must address me as Rep. Skeeter Whitten."

"I see.  Well, Rep. Skeeter Whitten, can I ask another question?"

"You may, Rep. Daddy Whitten." She regally nods her head while adjusting the ragged legs of her cut-off jammie pants.

"Thank you, Rep. Skeeter Whitten.  Can amendments be made to this bill?"

"They may be addressed, yes."

"Wonderful.  In that case, I say this whole family government be amended to a dictatorship until such time as you pay the bills."

Case closed.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Bathroom Cleaning

When my kids grow up and move out, I am going to have to get a J.O.B.  I'll tell you why.  I woke up this morning to silence.  That's nothing new, since without my hearing aids I'm deaf as a teenangster listening to her parents, but there really was silence; it wasn't just me.  No kids.  Hallelujer, as Madea says. 

First, I let the dogs out and fed the horses.  Then I sat down and got dibs on my own laptop.  What a novelty.  Not one whiney kid asking how much longer 'til they could play Toon Town, Avengers, or Facebook.  Now, I'll never admit this to them, but it takes some of the fun out of having the computer when I'm not keeping it from them.  Kind of like sneaking into bars before you're 21 being so much more fun than once it's legal.  Not that I'm admitting to that either.  But the experience was a little flat. 

Next thing you know, I up and decided to clean the bathrooms.  Now that, my friends, is something I hope to never get a wild hair to do again.  Not a good move on my part.  Nasty.  The kids are supposed to clean their own bathrooms upstairs, but I figured I'd go ahead and give them a lick and polish.  (Not a good thought, licking those toilets.  I need that thought out of my head.  Ick ick ick.) 

My bathroom is huge.  Jacuzzi tub.  Four girls - FOUR - took a bath (with swimsuits because we're not exhibitionists.  Please.) on Sunday night in it.  They must have had bubbles to the twelve foot ceiling, because scum was everywhere.   I climbed in, my reindeer jammie pants (they were on sale for $5!) rolled up and sprayed scrubbing bubbles everywhere.  Ev-er-y-where.  This was my problem, you see, because I had not thought this through.  I had neglected to bring a cloth or sponge with me, intending to let them sit for a bit while I did the sink and shower.  I was going to climb out, but have you ever tried climbing out of a three-and-a-half foot tub that's covered in slime? 

After I scrubbed the tub with my body, I moved on to the rest of the room, which I'm happy to announce was much easier, as was the guest bathroom. 

All the was left was the upstairs bathrooms.  I must admit to dreading them.  Kids are notoriously nasty creatures.  I've learned this in my nineteen years of experience as the mother of four.  I decided to spray the boy bathroom down first, thinking it would need some time to allow the bubbles to do their magic.  Upon entering the room, I realized that since Chad has moved out:  #1. It has a floor, and #2.  Pierson has kept it clean.  He has only neglected the toilet, which I can understand because really, aren't toilets supposed to be icky by definition?, and the ring in the tub.  I sprayed it and went to the girls bathrooms.  Their bathroom was just shy of pristine. 

I was somewhat disconcerted to realize that my children have been doing a better job than I have of cleaning their bathrooms.  I promised myself to either do better or add my bathroom on to their chore list, and got to work.  Within minutes I was back in Pierson's bathroom, and that's when I learned...

Boy dirt is not the same as girl dirt.  Boy dirt does not come off.  That ring in the tub is there to stay.  I scrubbed, I sprayed some more, I changed cleaners.  Nothing, except maybe the dirt grew.  I'm giving up, assuming that at least, it's clean dirt, right?  Dirt can be clean, and if I can't get it off with cleaners, he can't get it on him in the tub.  I hope. 

Maybe I can just paint over the dirt.  Oh, who cares? He's a twelve year old boy.  It's not like he bathes anyway.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Okay, so.  My daughter, the brilliant one?  The blonde, folks, the blonde.  Stay with me here.

She wanted feathers in her hair.  I don't know why.  She's a teenager, that's why, far as I can tell. 

I made her wait until after The Wedding.  Oh sigh.  Oh drama.  Then she had camp and had to wait a whole nother week.  More sighs, more drama, but at least she was at camp 400 miles away so I didn't have to hear it.  I'll tell you later how she didn't even text me the whole week long and I thought she was dead and buried in a ditch somewhere.

So today we were in the van, on the way to local beauty parlor inside the Texaco station.  What?  You don't have a beauty parlor inside your Texaco?  You're missing out, girlfriend. 

She asks me, "Which side should I get my feathers?" as she's playing with her gorgeous long blonde hair.  She's so purty, like a rooster at daybreak. 

"Most people do the left, I think," I answer her.  I figure she'll do the right now, because she's the species known as Teen Angst. 

Then she did something that shamed me as a homeschooler, a mother, and carrying of her dna.  She held out her hands in front of her, palms down, and mouthed "left, right" while lifting them one after the other.  What in the .... ?  I thought we covered this in preschool!  I'm almost positive we did! 

I handled it calmly.  "You don't know your left from your right?" I screamed as I ran off the road.

"Sure, I do," she lied through her teeth.  "I was just trying to figure out if you meant your left or mine."

"We're facing the same way!"  Now my car is nose down in a ditch and my kid is a dummy.  Life is not my happy place.

"Rightttt.... So, left is the side I wear my ring....Right?"  She strives for coolness.

I bought a new state of the art curriculum today.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Time To Let Go

It’s in my very nature to speak my feelings.  I don’t consider myself to be confrontational, but I have a hard time not saying what I feel, although I usually stew for a while before I let loose.  When I have tried to hold in negative feelings, it usually results in nuclear fallout.  Just ask my husband – he can tell you. 

Just recently, I’ve learned that sometimes all the talking in the world  just won’t work.  If the other person or persons doesn’t want to communicate, you can’t make them.  If they don’t care, well, then.   I came to this realization this past week.  Sometimes there’s just no more sense in trying to make a relationship work.  There is no relationship.  It should have been a sad day, but I felt a sense of freedom with only a touch of sadness. 

I’m sad mostly for my husband and kids, though they can make their own decisions.  But let’s face it – the woman of the family usually decides the way her family goes – where they vacation, who they see, etc.  If I don’t choose to go to visit certain people, Peter and the kids won’t go without me.  And I don’t choose to anymore. 

My daughter spent two hours waiting last week, for someone to show up that was supposed to want to see her.  By the time they showed up, I think she’d learned the same lesson the older three already have.  They stopped waiting years ago.  No phone call, email, or text to let anyone know they were running late.  Three hours late. My daughter is nine years old. Three hours is an eternity.

I’ll give the same communication to those people they have given to my family.  None.  My children are worth more.  My husband is worth more.  If they can’t see that, it’s their loss.

I hope that all four of my children are always secure in my love for them, and know that I love each of them individually.  They are who God made them, and that’s enough.  They are my blessings.    

Monday, June 25, 2012

Mother Son Dance

Chad and I were called on the floor for the traditional mother son dance, and that was all it took.  I started snotting and slobbering all over his pretty tux.  "You're all I've ever wanted in a son," I sob as I wipe my nose on his lapel. 

"You're the best mother I've ever had," he answers as he tries to back away.  I cling to him like a leech. 

"I'm so proud of you," I'm wailing now.

"I never knew this song was so long," he mutters.

We take a few turns as I try to get myself under control.  "You know, Mama, I'm not dead, right?  Just married?"

I sniffle and nod miserably.

"You'll even be able to see me once in a while."  He and The One That Stole My Baby live 23 miles away.  "Like every six months or so."

Pfft.  That girl don't cook.  He'll come home when he runs out of Ramen.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Rehearsal Dinner Tidbit

Some people have asked for stories about the wedding.  Well, I have one short funny for you, but it's not exactly G-rated, so you've been forewarned.

We were in line at the salad bar, quite a few people around, and my mother with her big mouth, announces that my shirt makes my boobies look big.  I took it as a compliment.

"Peter likes them," I inform her.

He was on the other side of the breakfast bar and looked up when he heard his name.  "What do I like?"

I bounced my girls a bit and gave a wiggle.  "My boobies."  He sighed and went back to fixing his salad.

It was then that I realized that my ex was standing behind me. 


It gets better.  My mother sidles over, ignoring all the outraged gasps of other patrons and leans around ex and says, "Donald says more than a handful is a waste."

The ex went to the other side of the salad bar.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

My Inner Twelve Year Old

My inner twelver year old has escaped and I can't seem to lock her back up.  She keeps running her mouth and coming up with snippy things to say.  It's fun, I have to admit. 

It all started two days ago when my husband got a Facebook message from his ex-wife, asking for $5000.  Let me just say, this woman is not my favorite person.  You might think I'm the jealous type or something, but I'm really good friends with his ex-girlfriend.  It's this woman.  She's not normal.  Not normal for an ex-wife, you ask? No, not normal for a human

I've been married to Peter for almost 17 years, and the first ten of those I spent chanting "Let them turn 18, let them turn 18".  Then I realized the nightmare would continue, so it became "Help me survive until their 21."  Then her threats and harrassment would end, please God. Right? 


Now the "kids" are 23 and 24, and after a couple of years of relative silence he got this request for the paltry amount of $5000.  Well, shoot.  I have that in my back pocket.  But it won't be going into yours.

Sixteen years of keeping my mouth shut (well....I tried) sort of came out with maybe a tiny touch of sarcasm.  I responded to ex with a sweet little note (well... I tried) and "PS - it's a no".  Her response to that led me to believe she was less than pleased with me.  I guess we're not going to be bffs.  I'm heartbroken. She said I broke up their family and the kids think their dad hates them.

I'm not admitting anything here, but maybe I said that my kids know their dad loves them, so one of us did our job as a mother.  And I thought it was me.  I also hypothetically thanked her for the entertainment.

She said I couldn't further God's Kingdom because I had a small mind (at least I think that's what she said - her spelling and grammar were so bad I couldn't quite tell) and she called me petty.  Moi?  I was shocked, just shocked.  And hurt beyond words to express myself.  Well, no.

I told her since the kids were grown now, maybe she could leave my husband alone, since she was starting to look desperate. 

Then she said she paid for her kids' education instead of making them get scholarships, like I did mine.  Uhhhh...? 

I'll quote this one for you:  I'm not sure of your point regarding my children's education? (Petty much?) You're jealous because they're smart enough to get scholarships? You poor thing. Bless your heart.

So she started bothering Peter on his page, telling him to make me leave her alone.  He told her to kiss off, so now she's on my page again, threatening to tell Peter about what I'm saying to her.  Honey, he's seen every word, as have at least ten of my nearest and dearest.  It's saved in a word document and I'm trying to find a way to add it in my next book.  If it wouldn't upset Peter, I'd post ever single word on this blog, but he doesn't want to drag his kids in it. 

He may be the bigger person, but I don't have to be. 

Monday, June 4, 2012

White Tile Floors

September 2011 - "Look at those gorgeous floors!  And they'll be so easy to clean because I can see the dirt and clean it up right away."

Novermber 2011 - "The dark red walls go so well in here.  I couldn't have done that without these gorgeous floors."  I sigh in rapture.

December 2011 - "Getting a real tree may have been a mistake."

December 26th - "Burn the flipping tree."

February 2012 - "Wipe your feet unless you plan on tracking in white dirt!"

May 2012 - "The next person that steps on a blueberry just to watch in splatter... pain....Lots of pain."

Today - I've locked the kids outside until they're completely dry AND wipe all the sand off their little tootsies.  They need to come up with alternatives to getting to their rooms that don't involve walking on my white floors.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Dear Peter,

Dear Peter,

I know how much you hate to throw away food, what with saving up for the next nuclear explosion and all, but listen....I just opened the refrigerator door and something tried to bite me.  I do not like when my food turns the tables on me.  I draw the line there.  And remember that white chocolate pudding we made?  It's not white anymore.  I took the liberty of offering some to Chewie - this is the dog that ate our couch, mind you.  He backed away. 

As for the thing that bit me, I cornered it on the second shelf with my Miracle Blade Ninja Knife, guaranteed to cut through steel or slice a tomato wafer thin - my choice - and again offered it to Chewie.  He ran yelping around the corner of the house and I haven't seen him since.  You weren't particularly fond of him, right? 

So, I cleaned out the fridge
and realized that for once the kids were right.  We really don't have anything to eat.  We have mayonaisse, which is nice.  And olives.  I hope you can forgive me for, and I quote, "throwing out perfectly good food that will make another meal.  After all, these kids are getting entitled, thinking they have to have fresh made food every day.  Left overs were good enought for me, they're good enough for them.  Why, back when I was a kid, I was lucky if I got a home cooked meal......".  And you walked barefoot to school uphill both ways, in snow.  Yes, I know.  I've even caught myself doing it to Chad a few times lately, so I sympathize, Ebenezer.  Just this week, I caught myself saying, "My first dining room table was from a garage sale and had three legs and one chair and I was proud of it! I sat under that missing leg and held the table up."  I even managed a tear. 

We may have to resort to nibbling on the 200 pounds of horse food I so faithfully buy each week for the four leggers, because I've inadvertantly starved the two leggers we brought into the world.  Do you think we can be brought up on charges for that? 

Eat up while your on the ship, dear.  It's lean at home. 

With Much Love,


Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Only two doses of antibiotic and I woke up at 6:30 with energy.  No alarm clock, no drugs, people, real live energy.  I put away the three loads of clothes that were over taking my dresser and chair (you'll be happy to know I now have clean underthings for the day) and I made my bed.  I mean, made my bed.  I fluffed pillows and got down on my hands and knees at the foot of the bed and made sure the bedspread was even with the floor.  I picked up three pennies and found that Nerf dart Pierson's been looking for. 

It's also come to my attention that when he moved out, a certain son of mine - I'm not naming names, but he is the only one of my children that's moved out in the last week (of ever) - took all of the empty hangers out of my closet.  Let it be known, Garrett Chad Whitten (darn, did I accidently mention his name?  So sorry.),  you will pay.  Either you return my hostage hangers, or you will be eating off the couch for the rest of your life.  You know what I mean.

Good grief, it's not like he's ever used a hanger in his life.  I have proof.  Don't make me bring out the pictures of your room, Garrett Chad!  I'll do it, Mister.

I'm feeling so good today, I'm thinking of getting dressed.  Maybe even deodorant.  You never know.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012


In a quest for a lithe body of model proportions - and since I'm not going to stop eating Baskin Robbins to get it - I swam across the lake today without stopping. I'm thinking if I do that about 50 times a week, I'll be in great shape before Jesus' Second Coming.

As I was on my return trip from the beach on the far side, I was thinking about taking a little breather before my lungs were sucked inside out. My arms were agreeing with this idea as with each stroke they screamed obscenities at me. Just as I was about to give up, something under the water swam up my swim skirt and grabbed hold. It let hold once and grabbed again.

I tell you what, I let out a hollering that would have a horror movie director asking me to sign a contract in a New York minute. "PEEEE- TERRRRRR" I shrieked at the dozing man on the raft. "Something grabbed me!"

I couldn't hear his response, since I'm deaf as a post, but he casually waved his hand in my direction and went back to sleep. This from the man that only moments before told the children to watch out for snakes. I screamed again for someone - anyone - to save me from the alligator/water mocassin/shark before I was able to twist free of its grasp. I lit out for the dock like my butt was on fire, I kid you not. I'm fairly certain I was doing a pretty good imitation of Shaggy and Scooby as they ran on water, trying to escape the swamp monster, complete with those cute cartoon curlicues and sound effects. (It's important to note for the record, I beat my previous record.) Peter finally paddled his raft over, taking his sweet time, to see what had endangered his beloved. He was still assuring me nothing bad was out there, but you'll notice he didn't get off the raft?

"It's only a dead fish!" he called from the middle of the lake, laughing himself silly at my expense.

I'll tell you what's funny. I'm sure and certain that fish was alive when it swam up my drawers.

Passive Aggressiveness

Anyone that knows me knows I can be a touch sarcastic. Only a touch, mind you.

Shut up that cackling.

I know sarcasm is thought to be immature, but I love it so much I can't give it up. I tried once. I went through a deep depression. It was the hardest five minutes of my life.

But I'll say this - At least 95% of my sarcasm is in good fun. It's rare that I use it to belittle someone or hurt them, and that 5% is usually at some idiot on tv or in the news. You know what I mean, not real people. I use sarcasm to tease people, but not about things that I think will hurt them. If I think they're sensitive about something, I never go there. I'd never moo at an overweight person, for example. I might moo at my 50 pound nine year old. She could never, in any world, be considered overweight, therefore, she would not be sensitive.

Now passive aggressive remarks, in my mind, are some of the nastiest things out there. They are designed, by their very nature, to take a seemingly innocent remark and shoot an arrow straight into the recipient's weakest point. There is no joking involved; they are intended to wound. And you can't really call the person on what they said, because that person will put on their best "who, me?" look and play the victim. ("I can't believe you would say that.")

Thanks, but I'll take the proverbial - pardon my language here - bitch anyday. If you can't say something nice, then at least say it straight forward. Don't get all underhanded and make everyone miserable because you aren't grown up enough to say what you're really feeling.

In case you're wondering if I have a reason for this post, I do. If you're wondering why I'm passive aggressively posting this to my blog instead of confronting said person about it, trust me I've tried - for years and years. I've tried many tactics, ranging from polite to full blown temper tantrum.

Last year I decided I was done. No longer would I let it bother me. Since I could no longer ignore the snide comments made, I made it so I didn't have access to see them. My mood lightened considerably. I'm at that point again now.

If you feel the need to stir the pot, take it elsewhere. I have more important things to do.

Oh, and by the way, if you think this blog is about you? I can't believe you would think that.

Monday, April 30, 2012

Text Wars

This morning Peter and I had to get up at the butt crack of dawn and take Scotlyn to Covington so she could meet with her friends for her week in Baton Rouge.  While down there, Peter and I had breakfast and ran a few errands.  Pierson doesn't like it when he doesn't know our every move, and thus started The Interrogation.

Pierson:  Where art thou?
Me: We took Scot to Teenpact.
P:  I know.  What's taking so long?  Did you take the laptop?
Me:  No.  We're running errands.
P: Kay

Five minutes elapse.

Pierson:  I like white chocolate.
Me: I like Volvos.
P: swn
Me: ???
P:  That means "Say what now?" I'm a fast texter, ain't I?
Me: Ok.  "What now!"
P:  swn
Me:  I already did but here you go again... "What now!"
P: say swn
Me: "say what now!"
P: sigh.  When you get here?
Me:  That sentence does not have a verb; therefore it is not a complete sentence.  Try again.
P:  "Say" is a verb.  Say swn.
Me. "When you get here" does not have a verb.
P: what about "get"?
Me: Needs a helping verb.  Extra grammar lessons for you today.
P: When are you going to get here?
Me:  Much better!  A-
P: -?
Me: I had to remind you.  Several times.  You don't get a perfect score gor that.
P: gor?
Me: For!  The keys are tiny.  Use your imagination!
P: Someone needs to work on their spelling.
Me: I can spell grounded.
P: No thank you.  B-

A few minutes go buy...

Me: Dead meat
P:  Sore loser

As we're pulling in the driveway...

P: please just tell me when you're getting home.
Me: ok.
Me:  Hi! *waving*

He looked out the front door, shut it, and locked it.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Diva's Conversion

My human asked been asking me to tell the story of my conversion to Christianity, and she is so annoying about it, I have finally relented.  But first, let me tell you a little bit about me.

My name is Diva Louisa, and I am an American National Show Horse.  For you slow not-in-the-know people, that means I am a half-Arabian, half-Saddlebred.  If you think that makes me a half breed, think again, you idgits, because I was specially bred to combine my unique ability to be….well, me.  I am a beautiful combination of athletic stamina, grace, and a smooth ride, plus I am just gorgeous to look at if I do say so myself. 

I am the color of a burnished, newly minted copper penny.  I’ve heard tell of people that comment that I’m the same color as Blitz and they can’t tell us apart.  As if.  First of all, he is a dull golden shade – not coppery at all.  Bleh.  Second of all, he has a boring white blaze.  I, on the other hand, have a unique star, then a delicate stripe that daintily chases its way down my graceful Arabian face, then a snip on my petal-shaped mouth.  A blaze indeed.  And third, while we’re on the subject, how could I be considered, by even the stupidest of the two-leggers, to look like that simple Blitz?  He’s short, skinny, and –hello! – a boy.  Now then, enough about him.  Icky.  Let’s talk about me again.  I like talking about me.  It’s my favorite subject. 

Mama says I have legs to my neck.  She doesn’t say it like it’s a compliment, but it should be.  I do have legs, and I know how to use them (I kick – more about that later).  The other day, the short human asked Mama if she wanted to go riding.  Mama said, “No, I don’t guess so.  I’d don’t want to have to get on Diva.  It’s like trying to scale the Empire State Building.”  She said that like it was a bad thing.  I’m fifteen hands, three inches, which is tall, but I do think the Empire State Building might be taller.  It probably doesn’t take off bucking when you’re trying to get on it, though.  Food for thought.

I think I’ve described myself pretty accurately to this point.  Do you have in your head a picture of a beautiful red head with long legs?  That’s me!  Now I’ll tell you a little bit about my past. 

I was born to a hussy that never even met my father before the night of my conception.  I’m so ashamed.  And he wasn’t even the same breed.  I’m bi-bred.  When I was little, all the other colts in the pasture wouldn’t play with me because I wasn’t Arabian and I wasn’t Saddlebred.  I didn’t belong anywhere.  My mother was no help; she was already bred back.  No shame, that one.   I’ll be thirteen come June – in the prime of my life.

When Mama found me, I must admit, I wasn’t looking up to par.  I’d been sent out to pasture by a dumb human that obviously didn’t understand perfection when he saw it.  There were a whole herd of us out there and the human didn’t even bother feeding us.  We had to get what grass we could scavange.  One day he just up and decided he didn’t want horses anymore (I think animal control had something to do with it) and he rounded us all up and took us to the sale barn.  That’s where I met Mama.  To hear her tell it, she was bored that day, and thought buying a new horse would make her feel better.  She left there with me.  You and I both know it’s because she took one look at me and knew I was something special, but she says she’s always had a thing for the underdog.  She was afraid I’d go to slaughter because I looked so terrible.  Granted, you could see every bone in my body and maybe I wasn’t feeling so hot, but please girlfriend,  I have never looked terrible a day in my life.

So five years ago, on a hot August day, I found myself at my new home with my new family.  I’d like to say it was an easy transition, but it hasn’t always been smooth.  First, Mama had all these rules.  Stupid rules, like “Don’t bite Scotlyn’s finger off.”  Pssh.  I didn’t bite it off.  It was still hanging.  She shouldn’t have tried to pet me when I didn’t want to be pet.  And don’t stomp on the dogs just for the fun of it.  That took away my favorite pastime.  @#$#%

Oh, yeah, that’s another thing – no cussing.  What the - ?! 

I did not like my new home, except for the food.  At least there was that.  And there weren’t twenty other horses invading my personal space.  Worse - there was Blitz.  He made it very clear that he wanted no other red horses in his pasture.  Mama calls him her sweet boy, but she has no idea what he’s like when she’s not around.  He chases me off and says mean things to hurt my feelings.  He called me ….this is so embarrassing.  Don’t tell anyone I told you this, okay?  Flamingo legs.  Can you believe that?  I bet if Mama knew that she wouldn’t think he was the sweetest horse she ever did see, would she?  I don’t think so either. 

Well, back to my conversion.  I didn’t want no part of a God that would let me grow up the way I had, being picked on all the time and all.  I figured, if there was a God, and he was good, why would he let me be a half-breed, right?  And why would he let Blitz exist?  That is not my idea of a good god, no sir.  But after I’d lived with my two-leggers for a while, I started noticing things.  Mama – who I didn’t call Mama back then, you know – was mostly pretty nice to me, ‘cept the day I bit Scotlyn’s finger and things like that.  And when she fed me, she usually called me names, but most of the time they were good names.  Sometimes, I laid my ears back and bit at her and she called me Alpo, but I think she was teasing then.

I started to like it when she came out to the pasture, usually at dusk, and came up to each one of us and pet us and gave us a treat.  She’d rub my star and call me Pretty Girl or say, “How’s my gorgeous lady today?”  I really liked that someone finally had enough sense to recognize my worth.  And every time I’d lay my ears back like I was going to bite her, she’d smack my neck and tell me to act like a lady. 

One day, Blitz, who she always gave extra attention to, told me she wanted me to stop biting and kicking because God doesn’t like it when horses bite and kick.  I didn’t know who God was, and he said God was the big guy behind the clouds that created horses.  I said if God didn’t want us to kick he wouldn’t have given me the perfect size hoof to fit on someone’s buttocks.  Blitz just shook his head at me, all sad and pitying like.  I remember thinking my hooves would fit nicely on his face.

The next day when Mama tried to pet me, I turned my butt to her and acted like I was going to kick her.  She sighed and asked why couldn’t I act nice.  I tried to tell her that it was boring, but she doesn’t listen to horse.   I didn’t get a treat that day, which I thought was rude.

Not long after that, she was trying to catch me to ride me – and without even asking permission – and she had me in the corner of the pasture.  I turned my hind in on her and she must have thought I was seriously going to kick her that time because she got mad, boy howdy, did she ever.  She shoved my butt around and grabbed my halter, pulled me nose to nose with her and told me I’d better get right with God or she was selling me to the glue factory.

Just like that I beheld the power of the Lord.  That woman had a crazy mean look in her eyes and I didn’t want to go to know glue factory.  It didn’t sound like my kind of field trip.

And that is the story of how I became the first known born-again American National Show Horse.  Sure, it’s boring sometimes, but it beats being some preschooler’s art project.