2018-08-17 French-Toast Friday

A few days ago my darling daughter initiated a game called “get to know you better”. In the game we take turns asking each other questions that reveal more about our character and through doing that we get to know each other better. There are two amazing things about this..

1. She’s 16 and most mothers of teenage girls might tell you that at this stage of the game the relationship is strained and it’s a struggle to get any positive conversation going. I’ve heard horror stories about fights and weeks going by without a kind word.

2. She’s the one who initiated this game which speaks volumes about her maturity and desire to have deeper connections with the people in her life.

We played for about an hour and took turns asking each other things. It was everything from specific favorite color (which led to us googling the difference between turquoise and teal and aqua) and what facial features about ourselves that we would change. I learned that she wants to go back to SanDiego and would also like to go to Disney World.

Fun fact: she looks a lot like me and has many of the same features as I do. When discussing our facial features, we had polar opposite thoughts. She loves her long eye lashes and would change the bump in her nose. I love the bump in my nose and wish my eyelashes were longer. For me, that bump represents something different and interesting which adds to my character and my eyelashes are ok, but that’s me just wanting something ok to be a little bit better. So probably a little selfish. Her not liking her nose just means she hasn’t come to terms with accepting her own flaws. I hope my expressing my liking my nose sent a message that she’s beautiful too, just the way she is. I hope.

Later that day we were sitting at the kitchen table and C was there too so I tried to start it back up engaging him in the conversation too. He wasn’t as enthusiastic about the game as Z was and most answers were “I don’t know”. That’s a more typical teenage response and I didn’t press him. The one question, however, that we went on a tangent about was “what’s your favorite alternate swear word”. They both said “fudge”. (I’ve noticed Z saying the original a lot lately). /shrug

After that we started naming as many as we could think of that we regularly use.. shut the front door, son of a buiscuit, schnikey, cheese and crackers, holy hand grenades, and my personal favorite.. “French Toast”, which often comes out as “Mother French Toast”. 😜

This whole long blog intro is actually an explanation for the title. Why is it French roast Friday? Because I’m now in full on panic mode about school. T minus 6 days until that first assignment is due and I have to crank out two critical essays for which I don’t even have topics yet. 😱

A more appropriate title would be “Mother French-Toast Friday”. And on that not it’s time to stop writing and start reading!! I’m probably going AWOL for a few days so I can crank this one out. I hope the Universe is on my side.

Crossing Fingers and Toes,

~Miss SugarCookie

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2018-08-14 Transition is Always Tough

Yesterday I took my kids shopping for school supplies. It was an effort to get them to face reality – school starts this week (today for C and tomorrow for Z). No more sleeping past noon and staying up super late. How late I don’t know because I typically fall asleep around 10PM.

They actually went to their dads yesterday and as I dropped them off it felt so strange. It seems like I always have them on the first day of school, get to take pictures and drop them off. This week I won’t get to do that and it just feels wrong. I guess it’s one of those things that goes along with being divorced and co-parenting. I’m glad they have another parent who loves them and takes care (mostly), but that doesn’t make moments like these any easier. After I dropped them off and kissed them goodbye I want home and packed all my weekly needs into my car and, after work, headed for Jim’s house.

That’s tough too. I mean, I look forward to spending quality time, and he has done everything to make his house feel like a second home, but that does not change the fact that I’m leaving the space that is my sanctuary.

I commented to a friend this past week that I like working from home and really like to be at my house and don’t really even like going out that much. It is true I am just going from one house to another, but packing like I’m going on vacation and taking all my work stuff and my cat and any groceries I don’t want to spoil is tiresome.

As soon as I landed here last night I was late for a conference call and got right back to work. After that we had dinner and I was just tired and feeling rotten. Sad, missing the kids already and upset that the cats were fighting already and feeling like I had not done enough that day.

We sat outside as the sky grew dark and talked through it. He helped me recognize it was just all the transition that had been getting to me. He’s right.

I tried to look on the bright sides, but my mood was lost. I kinda figured a good night sleep was the only thing to allow for some recovery. I was right.

I woke up this morning feeling refreshed and ready to take on the day. True that I’m going to miss taking C to his first day of HS but he’ll do fine and he’s just a phone call away. I’ve got a full day of school and work ahead and without interruptions I should be able to get tons done. The same holds true for the rest of the week. I just need to focus on that.

Right now, I’m going to focus on my workout and then I’m gonna hit this Tuesday where it hurts. Time to jam.

🍓🍋🍅🥝🍎,

~Miss SugarCookie

2018-07-01 Holy Shit, It’s July

It should come as no surprise since 1.) Yesterday was June 30th and 2.) It’s felt like July for weeks now. I haven’t done any biking or tennis this year at all cuz it’s either too hot and humid or it’s pouring down rain. Is this Nebraska or some jungle deep in the heart of the Amazon?

Well even though it should have dawned on me before just now typing the date out, it still kind of snuck up on me. Like most days, weeks, months, I came out the gate strong and full of vigor and motivation and ended tired, unsatisfied with my progress, and forgiving myself for being human, but I AM human, so it’s ok. Like Jack White says in Little Cream Soda, “Oh well oh well”.

My brain is scattered this morning. Am I really going to continue to talk about the weather or am I going to put down a solid Sunday Status or and I going to recount my experiences yesterday with the writing workshop or perhaps the family pool party that the kids and I attended last night? Too too much!

How about I focus on one magic moment.. from the pool party…

There I was, tentatively taking a quick dip in the pool, one eye on the other party goers/summers and the other watching the low dark clouds above defying nature and moving in several different directions at once. We all were. I’ve never been swimming in a storm before. We had checked the radar and the current cell was well south and east of our location and moving north east. It was sure to miss us so we decided to get in. There were rumbles in the distance and knowing how foolish it is to tempt fate, we were ready to book it inside the house at the first real sign of trouble (lightening).

Then the rain began to come down. Everyone sitting in chairs headed for the house but the rest of us were already wet. Instead of booking it to the house, a few folks said “hot tub time!”. Well ok. So the kids and I and Jim and several of his relatives got out of the pool and into the hot tub and there we sat, under the protection of a massive pine tree.

The sensation of being in the hot water and looking out at the rain just pouring down all around us was incredible. The best part was sharing that moment with my favorite peeps. I looked over at Z and C and could tell they were having fun. It was a brief moment in time, but priceless. Those moments are few and far between and I need to take all I can get.

Soon after we got in the hot tub there were a few bright flashes in the Sky and that was it, time to give up the moment and head for the safety of the house. We grabbed the towels out from under an umbrella and made a beeline for the back door. The party continued inside and it was good. His family didn’t stay terribly late and after that the kids and Jim and I sat in the kitchen talking about random things. It was a great night.

Like I said, few and far between and before I know it, these last few teenage years with my children will be in the past. Just like July snuck up on me, so will Spring of 2020 and Summer of 2022 and then they will be off making their own way in the world. That means I have to try and make the most of each day and the time I’ve been given. It truly is a gift and I have to remind myself to not waste it worrying too much about what I did or did not get done, or how many steps I got, or whatever.

With that, I’m going to turn my attention away from yesterday or this past week or month and focus on what’s next… something else Incredible (Incredibles 2). 😉

Happy July Ya’ll, Make the Most Of it!

~Miss SugarCookie

2018-05-19 Eleven Week Meetup

It’s a rainy Saturday afternoon. I’m at the gym trying to work of a big lunch. JS an I were talking last night about the foods we used to eat when we were young and in HS and college and it reminded me of my very favorite thing ever (or was a hundred years ago).

Blue box macaroni and cheese paired with applesauce. It had to be Kraft and from the box, none of that easy Mac stuff they sell now. Talking about it gave me such a craving. When I was at the grocery earlier getting stuff to cook dinner I picked up a box and some sugar free organic applesauce. I made that for lunch today for C and I and it was so good. I overate a little and now I just feel full. Hopefully 10k steps on this machine will make me feel better.

Big deal for me later.. not only am I cooking dinner for us (first time for that), but he’s also meeting my kids. I mean, it feels like a big deal even though it’s really not. He’s a cool cat and my kids won’t care much. Hopefully we’ll have a nice dinner and good conversation and then he and I are headed across the Missouri to go to an art exhibit at my sisters building (she lives in an artist complex that’s an old building downtown turned into apartments). I’m sure it will all be fine but I’m kinda nervous anyway hoping it goes well.

The cooking part is kind of funny actually because he’s cooked for me no less than like two dozen times (or more) now. Just about every time I go to his place we have a meal and he’s never let me help. Well one morning I was on bacon duty. 😜

I’m totally not used to that. He pours me a glass of wine and I just sit there and watch him while he cooks, and we talk. This time I’m cooking and one must remember I’m used to cooking for my kids and I and we don’t ever eat anything fancy. Mostly because they are so picky and don’t like flavor. I’ve always been good at my job, but with all the domestic stuff, I’m very so-so.

After cooking for Simon a couple of times he sort of always gave me a look when the subject came up. “Oh honey, not everyone can be good at everything”. Gawd, but that was Simon.. always making me feel inadequate. “Can you crack an egg?” What a patronizing thing to say. JS would never do that and, of that, I am certain.

Anyway, so that’s going down in a couple of hours. It will be fine I’m sure. The trick will be to cook a meal everyone will like and nobody will turn their nose up. I want the kids to leave a good impression and People eye rolling and refusing to eat will just not do. I just really want the kids to like him and for him to like the kids. Today is the 11 week anniversary of the day we met. Wowza! Time flies. That’s a good amount of time to wait to introduce the kids right? I hope so.

I’d better get back to cleaning up the house now that my lunch has settled.

Peace Out, ✌️

~Miss SugarCookie

2018-04-08 This is My Blog and I’ll Rant if I Want To

I’m not gonna sugar coat this. My ex-husband is a supreme douchebag. My gawd.. it’s good that my BS threshold is so high, otherwise I’d probably have been pushed past a breaking point way before now.

The funny thing is, he gets so butt-hurt when people talk shit about his behaviors. If you do douchy things, people are going to call you a douche bag. It’s that simple. And my responsibility to have your back and defend you ended in March 15, 2010 when I signed those papers in a court of law. A bitter-sweet day, but absolutely necessary for me to pursue a better life.

For 8 years I’ve tried very hard to walk a line where on one side, was him and his behaviors and tactics and the other was my children and my desire to maintain positive relationships for their sake.

I still have a responsibility to be amiable for them, but my ability to spin a positive light around him despite his life decisions is waning. I just can’t.

Breaking news this week.. he quit his job. The one that he got to end his 4 year streak of not having a job. The one that my kids’ health insurance was through. The one that he complained about every single time I saw him because he hated it. “Boo-hoo”.

You mean to tell me you didn’t like your job (or just working probably). Welcome to the real world bro. Lots of people Work a job they don’t like because it serves a purpose.. income and insurance. Security for your family. Your children who depend on you to man up and be an adult and not just quit because you are not happy.

Ok.. back it up. People might give me the side-eye saying this. Didn’t I do the same thing last year?? Yes. But here’s the difference.

1. I had a plan and enough savings to carry me a certain amount of months.

2. I’ve worked 20+ years in my field and have a great reputation and mad skillz (spelling isn’t one of them). 😜 So I knew I could get another job without too much trouble. He doesn’t have that.

3. Before I quit, I made sure he could take over the insurance for the kids with his employer. I would never have quit without having that figured out. Even if it was through the stupid Marketplace.

Three strikes and your out dude!!

He stopped paying child support years ago and I never pressed that issue because we mutually agreed to change our parenting plan and terms without officially going back through the courts. Not only that, but I’ve carried tje insurance and paid all medical expenses for the 4 years. Even when insurance switched back to him, I still paid the medical bills out of my HSA.

I even went to the courthouse recently to sign a waiver saying he was caught up on his child support because in the eyes of the court, he was delinquent. So I’ve gone above and beyond on his financial behalf. For the record, and in hindsight, signing that was stupid and I will never do it again. I lost all leverage to get anything out of him. However, once that amount starts piling up again, shit is gonna be different.

You act like a deadbeat, people are gonna know and I’m done enabling that. The kids are old enough now to understand and recognize it too and I’m over trying to smooth that over too. Z needs to get checked out for an issue and I told her she’ll have to wait until mom can arrange coverage because dad quit his job. She can form her own opinion about the situation.

I don’t know how I would possibly spin this anyway. I’m not even gonna try. I’m also going to TRY not to dwell on it. I have to get insurance for them no matter what and can’t depend on him to do it.

He tried to tell me marketplace was going to take 90 days and a prerequisite was filing 2017 taxes. Both of those things were bold face lies. I know, because I spent part of my Friday afternoon going through the forms online. I can get coverage by May 1st. I called him out on it and he just acted stupid. Derp.

What an idiot.

Ok.. I have to be done and find my happy place again. Now where did I put that mantra??

Oh yeah.

Peace and Love,

~Miss SugarCookie

2018-03-23 Friday Freakout

Yesterday the sun came out finally and the temps went up enough the kids and I had our first trampoline session of the year.

It was also admittedly a struggle to choose that over sitting down to read or write given my state of mind due to my self inflicted situation, which is another looming deadline and being even farther behind than I have in past situations.

It shouldn’t be a struggle, it should be a no brainer. The kids want to spend time with me outside and it was a beautiful day. What is life if it’s not living for those moments. And my days like this are numbered. I don’t ever want to sacrifice another minute with my kids for school or Work or anything really. Pretty soon the’ll be grown and gone and the work will still be there waiting for me.

We jumped until the sun went down. It was glorious.

I accomplished very little last night. Our cat jumped the fence and didn’t come back right away like she normally would. By 10pm, we were all freaking out about that and nobody was able to do a thing.

By the time she returned, it was too late to do anything but go to bed.

I tried to read, unsuccessfully, and consequently, I’m already behind on the master plan I put together yesterday for completing my March packet for the MFA program. Do I double up today? Is that even possible? What can I sacrifice to catch up? I don’t have answers, only more questions.

Yesterday I was freaking out about it and perhaps the goal today is to NOT repeat that and just dig in and make progress. I should change the title of this post to “Friday UN-Freakout”.

Well, those books are not going to read themselves…

Getting a Grip,

~Miss SugarCookie

2018-03-13 Fire 🔥 and Ice ❄️

I said upfront that it is what it is. Organic is a nice way to say unprocessed and unfiltered. That means that sometimes you get unfiltered awesomeness and sometimes it’s just rotten. Today I have a rant about my ex (husband) and if I remember before I’m done writing, I also want to contemplate a dream I had and what it might mean.

First, the ex. This guy! Flame 🔥 on!!

This guy who never cared about being a partner in parenting when our kids were small. This guy who was so career driven “for us” but found time to go out and drink and screw around when he was in town, yet didn’t have time to change a lightbulb or drive his kids to swim class.

This guy who was perpetually stuck in his 20s and wanted what he wanted and didn’t care until well after our divorce.

Having 30% responsibility for the kids when we separated was eye opening to him. He slowly realized how difficult things can be and also what rewards were also possible. Now he cherishes his children and they are his world, but that took a long time.

I remember the first time he texted that he was up all night with Z who was sick. I was all like “how is she now?” (And welcome to the real world, no shit it’s hard).

I went through years getting letters from the school about how my children were habitually tardy and he always said that it wasn’t him. He was always the master of convincing himself he was never to blame. I’m the data nerd, so I had the calendar with the schedule and crosschecked that with the detail reports I requested from the school. Surprise surprise, the kids were late on his mornings. I knew that already because I was rarely late.

Then we went through a phase where his vehicle wouldn’t start in the mornings. Despite it being at least 8 years newer than mine AND the same kind of car (Ford Escape), he would text and say “my car won’t start, can you take the kids?”. What was I supposed to do, say no?

He always made excuses.. and each time that was a reminder to me why were not married anymore. Over time (8 years this week actually), he’s gotten better, and now he has a job again and a girlfriend and takes more responsibility for things.

Every once in a while, though, I still get those reminders. This week Is his daughter’s Sweet 16 party which is a big deal to her, and I’m taking care of ALL of it, including hosting at my house and paying for everything. The only thing I physically can’t do is get 8 people to the escape room event and back. I asked for his help with carpool over two weeks ago and then confirmed again last week.

Then yesterday Z and I were picking something up at his house I’m the middle of the day, and he saunters out in his pajamas and comes up to my car window to say hi.

“I took the day off because I hate my job” he says. I conceal my eye roll by briefly looking down and then just smile and nod. I proceed to confirm the carpool again (because this is necessary) and I’m glad I did because he proceeds to tell me he can’t because he has a job interview IN DENVER. WTF??!

I’m really low on good alternatives. I’m not friends with the other parents and it’s short notice to take Work off early anyway. My sister is out of town and my other sister doesn’t have a car and I’ve got no friends close to this area of town. My parents aren’t close enough for it to be reasonable, but that’s my next best option.

He asked about Uber and I replied, “sure, I’m sure my dumping 3 teenage girls in a car with a complete stranger is going to go over really well… no!”.

This morning I requested he ask his girlfriend to help. She’s lived with him un officially for a while now and officially for the past several months. I think it’s not a stretch to ask. I forced his hand on it and she said yes, so now it’s all worked out. I’m still left feeling a little “WTF” though. Seriously.

There is so much more I could rant about, but perhaps that’s enough for now. I gotta turn down that flame so I can get to more important things, like how I almost died in a dream. It left me with icy chills. ❄️ I say “Almost” because when it happened, I woke up instantly!!

This was the night before last but you don’t experience something like that and forget it easily. I was with a few people at an event and the only one I remember was my step sister, Julie. We were looking up watching some event on tvs. There were multiple side by side screens like they have at the gym or at a sports bar mounted above where we were standing.

The screen on the right was showing some party outdoors with mountains covered in snow on the background. I had interest in this because I had family there too, or so I felt in my dream. It was too small to know for certain but I just felt it.

The scene didn’t last long. All at once you could see in the distance on the TV that there was an avalanche of snow coming down the mountain. At first it was small, and then in an instant it became massive and a spit second later, it overtook that party and I barely had time to consider the fact that my family was all crushed under that snow before a giant white mass came down upon us and where we were. Another instant later I woke with the fear of death in me. I was at that event and buried under an avalanche of snow and debris. I was terrified and it truly took me a few seconds to recognize it was a dream and I was fine. I didn’t really go back to sleep after that.

Like I said, that was yesterday but it’s still lingering in my brain. It happened so fast and what I just described is all I remember. I wonder what that could all mean?

No matter, time to get back to reality now and the party happening in a few hours here in Sunny Nebraska where there are no snow filled mountains! 😉

Flame 🔥 Off,

~Miss SugarCookie