This week isn’t going how I thought it would

Tuesday, I got up and was so hopeful. Sure, I had my Spiritual Practices class that evening, but I had all day to write, so it was going to be great!

Nope. Due to some not-quite-disclosable things that are in the works, I got caught up in not one, but two different side projects. One is writing adjacent and in the end won’t require as much of my time as some of the things I’m doing now, but there was a wrapping up of one set of things in order to hand them off to someone else so I’d be ready for the next thing. I know how vague that sounds, but that’s the way life is sometimes, right?

The other thing is not writing adjacent, except in that I am writing up minutes for a group that I had thought I wasn’t taking part in any more. So there was catching up for that group’s information and making sure I still had access to all the notebooks and cloud storage that I need to do that work.

By the time I completed both things, it was time to hit the gym. On Friday, I rejoined the one that is walking distance from my house, instead of the one that I only go near on the way back from taking kids to school in the morning (which isn’t a good time for me to write, due to my ADHD meds timing). I went and learned where all the new stuff was, which machines I could still comfortably use, and which ones are still out of my happiness zone. It was a good workout, and I felt better for having done it.

The rest of the night zoomed by (literally haha!). Wednesday I had two meetings scheduled, so I knew I’d have to make the most of my in-between times for writing. Unfortunately, by the time I’d gotten home from the first one and eaten lunch, a problem had sprung up.

My kids school had a potential shooting threat. They informed parents right at the same time the 504 coordinator called to ask me if we could postpone our meeting for that afternoon. Because of the way our high school sends out alerts (first in the form of a phone call from the school’s main phone line wherein a computer voice reads the entire body of the message, including the URL’s – letter by letter; then almost immediately as an identical text message, an identical email, and then as a link to an identical letter in our district app), and the fact that 90% of the more than five a week they send are either about buying football tickets or that the PTA is selling Chik-fil-a at lunch on Friday, I have stopped answering calls from the school. So I missed that phone call and drove directly to the school. It was a madhouse. Literally hundreds of parents had driven there to take their kids out of school. Since there’s only one way in and out not on lockdown, they were all in the same foyer I needed to check into in order to get to my appointment on time. I was speaking to the woman guarding the door about my having an appointment “Honey, everyone is saying that,” when the 504 coordinator called me again. Since I was already there and the coordinator was meeting me at the inner door, I was ushered right inside. I heard the scoop on everything potentially threatening that was going on, had my kids 504 meeting, and offered to take the kids home anyways, even though it sounded like there was nothing actually going on other than the parental mayhem out front. Both my kids declined. One didn’t want an unexcused absence and the other wanted to go to Writing Club (oh my heart!).

They both wanted me to keep close “on standby,” so I ended up hitting the nearby stores and doing some early Christmas shopping to keep busy, since I had no computers or iPad on me to write with in the parking lot (the notebook I’d brought for the meeting literally had two pages left and I used them during the meeting). Scooped up the first kid out, then sat in the car waiting for the second kid for almost an hour.

I was exhausted, physically and mentally, by the time I got home. I ate dinner and was just heading to bed, when a kid -the one that has never in his life sat still for a movie – begged me to watch a silly Disney movie (Halloweentown II: Kalabar’s Revenge) with them. Of course I had to.

Today was an early-to-school day for the kiddos, but I had all the chores I hadn’t gotten done Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday to get to work on, plus grocery shopping, so I did those things first. Then I had critiques to do for the Pineywoods Critique Group (which has a new website with a forum and blog here), along with hitting the gym again so I don’t turn into a stiff blob like I was all last year). I also needed to finish one last bit of an old transcribing project that I had promised someone ages and ages ago.

All of this is a long way of saying: it’s late Thursday and I’m still at 684 words for NaNoWriMo. *sigh*

Pinterest, Food Network, & Snacks, Oh MY!

I’ve been struggling with making lunches and snack interesting again. I’ve looked to Pinterest and Food Network and Bento Mama home pages. I’ve tried so many different things. Some, like the pizza bagels (easy peasy: toast a bagel, put it in the lunch box, add a tub of pizza sauce and a tub of shredded cheese and send to school for kids to assemble) and the Turkey/Cheese Skewers (with festive skewers ordered online) have been instant hits. Others, like the Cherry Angel Food Dump Cake (again, easy: dump one can cherry pie filling into greased 9×13 pan, dump box of angel food cake mix on top of that, dump one stick of butter on top of that. cook for 40 minutes at 350 degrees), no one loved (it fizzed in your mouth. it was disturbing).

Today I made a version of Puppy Chow that I’ve taste tested before the kids get home. It’s got chocolate and peanut butter and bits of dried fruit and random dry cereal. It has a couple substitutions for kids likes/dislikes, but I’m still thinking it won’t be a hit. Or maybe it will be. I just don’t know.

My Crazy Week

So out of the last six days, I had kids (one, two, one) home three days, I worked two days, I had events going on five nights and parents in town the last one, it was the first anniversary of a friends murder, AND I started Nanowrimo.  So you’ll forgive me for not following up on the Biscuit vs. Scone bake-off.  Maybe I’ll do that tomorrow.  Nothing’s happening tomorrow, right? (Don’t tell me.  I like being blissfully unaware today.)

Kids are well now, they’ve all had haircuts, they’ve had a sleepover (either at church or at Nana & Pa’s), and they’ve already eaten most of their Halloween candy.

I’m something like 5600 words into my latest novel for Nanowrimo.  It’s going pretty well.  This year I have Beta Readers, too, which is different and fun.  I’m awaiting feedback.  I think it’ll be nifty having a braintrust behind my novel.  I’ve got an artist, a photographer, and a librarian reading my stuff.  WHEE!

My husband is being sweet about all this.  He said “You choose what you do with your free time.  I watch football and drink beer.  You spend time with crazy people inside your own head.” It’s all good.  I still think mine’s better.  🙂

More organizing

I promised more organizing for the next day’s post and many days have gone by and I can’t remember any more what I organized, so I’m looking through my pictures to help me remember:

See, now my three-tiered shelf can be for pretties again!  (Temporary display for now; first things my hands came to)
See, now my three-tiered shelf can be for pretties again! (Temporary display for now; first things my hands came to)

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This is our new art storage cart. I like that it has many drawers, so pens in one, markers, crayons, pencils, etc… I also like that it’s on wheels so it can live there in peace during regular life, or move to the kids room when Greg is on an art spree, or move into my room when we have guests over for dinner. 🙂

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This doesn’t look as tidy as I’d like, but for a $3 over-the-door tie-and-belt rack, it does the job. No more lost belts & ties! Woo hoo!

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Shoes are always going missing in this house, but NO MORE. Bottom two rows are Greg’s, next two are Ben’s, and next two are next-size-up for each of them (for those days when Daddy is impatient).

Honestly, I’ve gotten nothing else done since then, except a tiny bit in my makeup & hair boxes.  Steph and I did a writer’s retreat this weekend, which I posted about here(from a writing standpoint) and here (from an RA standpoint).  Since I’m still working on last month’s holidays, I brought her her family’s gifts, and she sent some home with me for the boys as well.

There were cards & gifts from another friend in there as well.  :)
There were cards & gifts from another friend in there as well. 🙂

The kids were out of school on Monday, so we had a quiet, fun day:

Greg pulled out his science kit and we spent quite a while trying out all its tricks.
Greg pulled out his science kit and we spent quite a while trying out all its tricks.

I remember playing on this with them when they were all babies!
I remember playing on this with them when they were all babies!

This sign on the door of the bathroom at the park cracked me up!
This sign on the door of the bathroom at the park cracked me up!

and worked in the garden. Ben had scouts in the evening. I don’t know that we should call it that anymore, as he’s the only one that ever shows up any more. *sigh*

Yesterday I didn’t have to work, but I did have a bunch of errands to run: a Goodwill drop-off where I spoke to a man named Ram about how God changed his life, a grocery store run to buy lunch makings since the kids had eaten them all up over the weekend, and then my book study on Raising Resilient Kids over at the PDC. After school Ben had dance, so Greg and I hit the dollar store so he could use some of his Christmas money. Then off to piano lessons, where we got a lesson on what goes on inside the piano and how all the pedals work. It was awesome!

Our teacher is super interesting!  :)  We love her!
Our teacher is super interesting! 🙂 We love her!

Today I was hoping to sub, but haven’t gotten a call, so I’m going to go off and work on some stuff in my bedroom, which has all the boxes of “doesn’t live here” from David’s room cleaning last week. It’s pretty scary and I’m tired of looking at them! Once I get done with that, it’s time for fun stuff: writing! 🙂

Spring Break

This last week was our spring break from school. I’ve already told you about Monday and Tuesday, so I’ll start today’s story with Wednesday. We didn’t make any big plans for Wednesday, since that was the day that we were swapping out D for B at Nana & Pa’s house, but it turned out to be a big day anyway. My parents came up to town and told us that they’d decided not to make us wait for a month to get our new van (which is their old one), they were going to sign it over to us right now. 🙂 And so we began our day long journey to get the car retitled, re-registered, and in all ways made our own. We ended up visiting the registry twice, once with just me and my dad and once with both of us, my mom, and two of the kids as well. By the end of the day we’d gotten it done. G and I spent the rest of the afternoon emptying out our old van, then vacuuming it out, scrubbing it down inside and out, then cleaning all the windows we could reach, all so Nick could start driving it as soon as he came home. (D spent the afternoon catching up on three days worth of Animal Crossing.)
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Thursday morning we visited with my parents a bit, then went home very quickly for D’s early playdate with his best friend C. They had a great time playing video games, riding bikes & skates, and wrestling on the trampoline.
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While the kids were playing, I once again worked on some jewelry (a post on all of that coming soon). That afternoon my mom watched the kids so my dad and I could also go out and check out a netbook at Best Buy, which they did not have in stock, and to buy a camera, which they did have. We spent some time updating his regular laptop and getting it set up with the camera software and then learning the new cameras ways before going home for the evening.
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B came home just before dinner, bearing sundaes from McDonald’s. My in-laws got a tour of the new van and all it’s shininess before they left.

Friday morning B’s friend A came over for a playdate. I made some more jewelry. They spent quite a bit of time playing the Wii, but we also had a picnic in the backyard, since the weather was beautiful for it. We experimented with playing baseball/tee ball in the yard.
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After he went home, Nick and the kids and I went out to the bookstore to get the kids their celebration books for having great report cards (and we may have picked up a couple things for ourselves as well. maybe. possibly. what? we never ever do! Leviathon & Behemoth by Scott Westerfeld and Good Eats: the Middle Years.). D got the second Percy Jackson book, B got three Magic Treehouse books (#20, #21, and a research guide about Knights and Castles), and G got two Barbie books (one 3 Musketeers and one Fairies) and an audio book about the movie Toy Story. Then we headed out to tour the big new exciting store in town: our local markets version of Whole Foods.
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It’s called “Fresh” and wow, was it packed with people. It’s a beautiful store, filled with lots of things our regular stores don’t carry: lots of organic, whole grain products and a huge array of cheeses, meats, and ready-to-eat foods (for which there is a balcony seating area outside).
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We amazingly managed not to lose any children, nor to knock down any displays, though we did pick up a lot of stuff that was knocked down by the little old lady near us, as she had a large purse and was trying not to hit my kids with it, and since we were behind her in the herd (seriously, it was so packed that you pretty much followed the same people all through the store) we did the picking up. We eventually made it back home and Nick and the kids tidied up there while I went over to help my dad with his new netbook, which he’d picked up that morning. I did all my computer magic over the course of a couple hours and got him hooked up with all his software and file needs and headed back home to start reading my book. Bwahaha. Nick went over and spent the evening hanging out with my dad.

Saturday we hung out with my parents again in the morning before we left for church. The kids climbed ropes and played on the swings. Nick and D and Dad played chess. It was a good morning. We went to church, listened to our new pastor (who was a fabulous speaker, lots of discussion of Greek words, loved it), and then kids had snacks while my m-i-l and I practiced our duet on the big piano (which has keys that are very hard to press compared to my piano at home). We headed home, I changed clothes, and headed out for Girls Night Out. Nick and the kids stayed home and did whatever boys do when their mama is away (hung from the ceiling? shot themselves out into space in rockets? who knows! It was Boys Night In!). I had a lovely time with my lady friends and this time we managed to get a photo of all of us together (something we’ve never managed in the two years we’ve been meeting).
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Came home and couldn’t sleep, as I am always excited after a night out, so I stayed up late finishing the book I was reading (the second Percy Jackson book; trying to keep up with D), never realizing that the clocks hadn’t already been set ahead for daylights savings time.

Yesterday we all got up unreasonably early. The day turned out to be one of those ones were everything goes wrong. G ran into my room yelling that D was throwing up from atop his bunk bed, B was asleep below, mercifully, or there’d have been extra mess. I got up, cleaned up the mess, got the boy into the bathroom, then looked at the clock: 5:45am. My husband, who was mysteriously in the kitchen and not at work (he’s been working a lot of overtime lately), hugged me and told me he’d reset all the clocks already so I didn’t have to. I tried to go back to bed, but couldn’t since I had a snuggly, wiggly boy (G) in there with me. So we all got up, ate breakfast, then sat around reading until it was time to leave for the last basketball practice of the season. David and I stayed home because of his icky tummy. He played more Wii and I wandered here and there doing chores and trying to finish up another necklace. The laundry that I thought was clean was mysteriously dirty, the necklace that I “finished” I turned out to have left a bead out of.

After the other kids came back home, we tried to go to the zoo and got verbally assaulted by the director of said zoo for bringing in a check that wasn’t signed by me — it was a gift membership from my in-laws, which I had filled out paperwork for and brought in with me, but he refused to listen one word I said, no matter how polite I was. It was a disaster all around, so I decided to take my children elsewhere. We got to the frozen custard place and discovered that my two-for-one coupons had been left in the hallway when we were swapping stuff around between the vans earlier in the week, but by then I decided to just make the best of it and we paid full price. The custard was perfect and by the time I’d finished venting to my husband, my best friend, and finally to my mother-in-law (who is going up to talk to the zoo about their communication skills today) I was feeling much better. We had a movie night with the kids, watching an old Valerie Bertinelli movie about a robot dog, which they loved. The movie ran late, so the kids ran late getting into baths and storytime, so it was nearly 9:45pm before they went to bed. I made their lunches last night and set out clothes for them so they could sleep in this morning and it’s just now time to get them up so that’s the end of this post.

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I got a lot done yesterday, considering that I was supposed to be resting. 🙂 At the moment, though, I can’t quite remember what it was that I did.

The apartment is officially a mess. I think anyone would agree with me on that point at the moment. I mean, yes, the floor has recently been vacuumed, and yes everything’s been dusted this week, but there’s a lot of crap lying around. *sigh* I need to clean.

Went back to SuperTarget this morning. Bought two more of the place mats that Nick mysteriously liked…and got napkins and napkin rings to match. I also got some Xmas ornaments that fit the size of tree we have this year (which is small–and our previous ornaments are large) and a desk organizer that I prolly don’t really need but was cute and cheap. 🙂

David is playing with the remote control again. We’re watching the Jenny Jones show. How nice. Oooh…he found the power button again and now it’s off. YAY!

David’s been interesting lately. He initiated a game of peek-a-boo yesterday when he got tired of me playing with fabric. It was very cute. This morning he -almost- crawled to get my cell phone (which he wanted to eat, of course). 🙂 EEEEEE.

 

DONE!

Okay, I’m done updating my journal now. You’ll just have to be happy with the short entries. I haven’t felt much like being online lately.

Not to mention the fact that I had a relapse last night and really can’t do all that much at the moment. I mean, I -feel- productive, but I’m too tired to do much about it at the moment. *sigh*

Still, I’ve managed to make 4 pillowcases and bathe David. That’s something, right? Oh and updating this journal (people were complaining).