Ink Tattoos

>> Friday, August 28, 2009

The title may be misleading, because I'm not writing about the real tattoos that involve a needle and ink. Been there, done that and now have it permanently inked into my hip forever. I'm talking about the children who take pens or markers and draw all over themselves (their skin and their clothes). How hard is that to get out? I know I've pulled laundry out of the dryer to find that the ink stain was still there and wasn't going to come out. It's annoying to spend money on clothes only to have them permanently stained.

What if there was an easier way to remove ink stains? There's a product called amodex that removes ink stains. It also removed a ton of other stains so you should check out the amodex web site and see all the different inks, foods, and other things it can get out.


Cheat? Public Humiliation is Your Punishment

>> Thursday, August 27, 2009

This man cheated on his wife. This was his punishment.

When his wife presented it to him, he thought she was kidding. At first. Obviously, cheating isn't a joking matter.

William Taylor took his punishment on the day this picture was taken...and he'll take it for another two days after this one.

As far as I am concerned, he got off easy. Cheating, to me personally, is unforgivable. I would make a bonfire out of any sentimental objects my husband owned (guitars make good kindling right?) and then throw him out if he were to cheat on me.


Racing for Overgrown Boys

The local Tractor Supply Company has these small go-karts that my husband stops to look at every time we go in there. I think he's picturing our son riding around our large backyard having a blast in them (while I picture the dangers).

He's not seen the REAL racing vehicles yet, like a yamaha rhino 660 at Dragonfire Racing. These definitely aren't toys and are for the serious ATV racer. It's definitely not a backyard toy for kids. If my husband saw these, he'd turn into an overgrown boy and want one himself. I definitely married an overgrown boy!


School for Non-Custodial Parents

>> Wednesday, August 26, 2009

School is starting. If you're a non-custodial parent, have you taken the steps to get in touch with your child or children's teachers, introduce yourself, set up your own contact information with the school (cell phone, home phone, email), etc.? Don't assume the custodial parent is going to include you on the forms they fill out at the beginning of every year.

Most schools have an Open House planned right before school starts. Take the time to show up and introduce yourself personally. If there are any conflicts when communicating with the other parent, having your own direct line to the teacher(s) can make a difference.

For more information, click here.


Stress Reliever Ideas

Who has some really good ideas on how to relieve stress? We all deal with just because of the nature of our family dynamics here. Being a step-parent is difficult. Being a step-parent with a difficult ex to deal with on top of the "usual" stepfamily stuff makes it, by far, the single most difficult thing/role I have ever had in my life.

Here are some things that I do:

  • I go to the stable and spend time with my horse. She has been such a huge stress release for me the past three years. It's not about riding (which I actually don't do that often), it's just about putting myself into a different situation (at the barn) and spending time loving on this huge animal, pushing thoughts of the daily stresses away, putting my head up right against hers and just breathing her in.
  • I lock the bathroom door and soak in a hot bath. It'd be nice if it was a jacuzzi bath, but it's not. Lighting some candles, like WoodWick Candles, which sounds like a fire crackling, makes it all the better. That's assuming the kids can stop pounding on the door for me!
  • I write. For years, I went to my stepfamily forum and it was my venting place. I still have it but since blogging, I don't use it near as much as I used to. I have both a private and public stepfamily forum and the private one is safe for me (and my members) to vent all we want without worry about who is reading it and what they think because they understand. Most of the time, like I said, I blog here instead now.


Hate-Filled Comments

Don't you just love the hate-filled comments (well, they attempt to leave them but with comment moderation, how disappointed they must be when they don't automatically show up).

I had two of them left last night, left by the same person, full of every cuss word imaginable with it thrown in there that I probably wouldn't approve it. You're right...cuss-filled comments do not get approved. Get real. I was even called the "c" word. *gasp* My poor little feelings got hurt. No, not really. That would be my sarcastic, bitter side now commenting on such intelligent commentary left.

Supposedly we live within driving distance of the kids and I'm supposed to make my husband see the kids more than once a year (like I'm to blame for the ex's behavior or can fix it...that's funny). Let's look at that for a minute.

  • We've seen them twice this year so far (gosh, guess you're wrong already). Would've been more but mom can't seem to keep their schedules clear long enough so they can go to dad's. It certainly wasn't from lack of trying on our part.
  • They live in another state. It's an eight hour drive for us to get them here, assuming you don't hit traffic through the two major cities you have to go through to get to them, but if you call that an acceptable driving distance, then you're welcome to make that drive every other weekend if you don't have work obligations or other children who actually haven't been taught that to love dad and other siblings is bad. All that aside, I can't imagine any kid wanting to make that drive every other weekend or how that would be good for them.
  • I have file boxes full of all the times we requested time with the kids (and were denied for one pathetic reason or another) so you know what I think about this comment.
  • Those file boxes also document all the manipulations so the kids wouldn't want to leave their mother home alone (getting angry and withholding play time if they wanted to talk to dad, not letting them read or have things we'd mail to them, the clinging and tears every time they'd leave for dad's or telling them that we have serial killer ghosts in our house (what kind of person does that to a kid) and the different therapists confirming what ("who") the problem is. Guarantee you it wasn't anybody in my house. The result of all of that is where we are at now - two teenagers who still can't leave their mother. It's called parental alienation syndrome. Look it up.
  • Those boxes also include the journal of violence from one of my stepchildren towards my kids so if sometimes I get angry or seem bitter, I'm allowed. When kids are used as pawns, yes, I get angry! If one of my stepkids tries to kick in an infant sister's head, bloody a little sister's nose or pound another sister into the ground and have to be pulled off of her (only a few things in a long line of them) and it's because said stepchild has been put into a position to have to choose between which parent to love and to keep their distance from me (what better way to do that than to hurt my kids), yeah, my feelings for the person who put the kids in that position are perfectly clear.

When your child is crying on her birthday because she was hung up on by the ex's house, come to me and see how nice you feel. When you have to pull a stepchild off another child because he's trying to pulverize her face, come to me and tell me how you feel now. When your child is bleeding (literally)... When you have to take your toddler to the ER to make sure their skull isn't fractured... When you have to find a therapist for a stepchild wanting to die so they don't have to worry about their mother anymore... When you have to hear the stepkids talk about the issues, without badmouthing their mother which is something we've never done with them (same can't be said for the other side), on why their mother gets mad when dad calls them, or why they have to go home because she's crying home alone without them, or why mom stops interacting with them if they want to talk to dad, or why they were told their stepmom is going to hell, or why we have serial killer ghosts in our house, or deal with false accusations, blah blah blah...come to me. They're now teens who have a relationship with their dad based on what their mother has taught them - not to show too much for dad or dad's family because mom doesn't like it. A therapist said they had to do it to make their world safe with their mom. What kind of a mother does that to her children? No, I don't like the ex but my conscience is clear on why I don't.

I have a right to get ticked off about circumstances once in awhile, especially when they hurt my own children. I wouldn't be human otherwise...oh wait, stepmoms aren't supposed to be human with opinions or feelings. We're supposed to sit back and watch crap hit our family left and right and just take it with a smile.


Fall Items on Clearance Already?

>> Sunday, August 23, 2009

I was in Rite-Aid yesterday picking up a prescription for my husband, just browsing the aisles (to pick up things I likely really didn't need) and they already have their Autumn stuff half off! What's that about? It's too soon to put Autumn decor on sale (in my opinion anyway).

They had this really cute rooster that I stopped to look at. I'm not sure why since it's not in my decor but it was cute. If I had rooster pictures or rooster dinnerware, it'd look cute in my dining room. Since I don't have either, I could stick it on my deck and pretend we have roosters like some of the neighbors. Except ours would be quieter!


Spa Day for Four Year Old

My beautiful baby girl had all her baby curls cut off at a hair salon. It was at one of the cheap drive-through type hair salons that are in every strip mall it seems like. They did ok, which I was pleased about. I was worried since that was the first time I'd gone there. It wasn't a kid franchise like Snip-Its but they did ok. It just had a booster seat so it wasn't a "kid" only place. She wasn't scared and she loved her new hair cut. I was just happy it was straight.

She also had her ears pierced for the first time on that same day so it was a great day for her. She said it didn't hurt. She loved her pampering. We'll have to do it again when she's ready for a trim because mom is due for a hair cut as well. We can do it together!


Husband Says Open a Business

>> Saturday, August 22, 2009

My husband mentioned, as we drove by a vacant store in our area recently, that I should open up a shop carrying alternative religious items. Seeing how we live in a heavy Mennonite community and most everybody I know is very christian, I don't think that would go over very well in this area.

I wouldn't even know how to go about doing something like that even if I wanted to, which I don't. I'd have to hire business plan consultants. The last time I wrote a business plan was for a college class about 18 years ago or so. I was about 18 or 19 and my idea for a store was a store similar to Frederick's of Hollywood. Yes, I was a troublemaker but I have to give my college professor credit...he didn't squirm much. I did get an "A"!


When Good Recordkeeping Saves Us Money

I think those of us who have been doing the dance with the ex for a good amount of time know how important it is to keep good records (telephone records, conversations, decisions, requests, visitation issues, support issues, etc.). It can make a big difference if the other party decides not to uphold their end of any negotiations. In our case, if we hadn't had good child support records, we'd have been in trouble because each year for the first five years or so, the child support agency messed up the accounting and tried to get more money out of my husband by saying he was in arrears when he wasn't. Of course, the ex wouldn't lift a finger to help, even though she knew she'd received all her child support, until after we'd fought with them for awhile. At one time, it was a whole year of auditing and there were written threats of them taking our income tax return before she agreed to write them a letter and tell them she'd received all her support. It was such a joy!

I plan on keeping great records until the kids are 18 (at least). I may even go to age 21 or so. You never know what type of stuff is going to come our way in the future or if things will be said to the kids that may need to be disproved with documentation. You just never know. We have written proof of all the times their dad requested more time with them and all the denials...all the times we tried to get my stepson help when he needed it...records from their different counselors.

I keep paper files and have a separate drive set up on my computer for back up. My husband uses online backup which I want to look into as well. What I'd LOVE to do is get rid of all the paperwork in'd be nice to have that scanned and computerized so I'd have more room in my storage room!


What happens after you expect respect

Not surprisingly, people don't like it when you stand up for yourself against their disrespectful behavior. They get angry that they no longer have you there to intimidate or use anymore. Imagine that.

My ex made a lot of promises that I knew he wouldn't keep that I didn't fall for. He'd stop drinking. He'd come home more. We'd do things together. He didn't mention the bruises he used to leave or the windshield he bashed my head into so I'm not sure if his abuse was still going to be part of the equation. You know, if he'd respected me to begin with, he should never have had to make those kinds of promises because of his past behavior. I was done. I knew I didn't deserve his treatment but I thought if I could get him to stop drinking, things would get better. I finally realized that nobody else could help him. He had to help himself and I left. A good indicator of future behavior is past behavior.

For some, like my husband, when he left his ex, she thought she could continue to dictate to him how things were going to be. She may have used intimidation while he was with her and he just gave in because it was easier than fighting with her around the clock when they had a child, but when she lost control over him, oh boy! When you treat a person in a way that makes them feel badly about themselves or your relationship with them, it shouldn't be a surprise when the other person gets tired of it and wants out. When they get tired of it and say, "No more!"

A person who is well-adjusted will acknowledge that their own behavior contributed to the downfall of the relationship, but if a person remarries, usually the new spouse gets the blame instead. Ex's tend to think that if their ex hadn't remarried or moved on, then they'd still be able to lead them around by the nose. It's easier to blame somebody else than take a good, hard look at yourself. Maybe some of them would be right. Some, not all. Personally, I wouldn't have married my husband if his ex had still been leading him around, using kids to do it. When he stood up to her, and set his boundaries, I finally said, "yes" to his marriage proposal. I wouldn't say "yes" a minute before then. I was at that point in my life where I was not going to tolerate any disrespect from the people I chose to have as close relationships in my life.

Of course, I was to blame when he stopped letting her have her way (according to his ex). I believe the way it was worded was something like he handed his manhood over to his current wife. I still have the letter in the reams of paper in storage we've had to keep. I could pull it out and get the exact wording but that would be wasting too much time on her words, which brought a laugh to me. My response was to tell her that if she'd known how to handle his manhood to begin with, maybe he would have been able to tolerate her a little longer. Yes, I meant the double meaning. Then I thanked her for being so amusing. (I thanked her many times in the first five years or so for providing so much amusement to us whenever she got stupid. I was taught to always say please and thank you.) Yeah, I don't put up with crap like that very well. If you are going to dish it out with me, you better be able to take some back in return.

With family members, I found that if a family member couldn't bully or direct my life, they moved onto the weaker sibling who they could do that too. It's a sick, sick dysfunction.


Getting Contacts

>> Friday, August 21, 2009

I am getting contacts for the first time in 14 years! I stopped wearing them because I had an allergic-type reaction to them after wearing them for years. My eyelids started swelling up so I stopped wearing them and stuck with glasses. It was a sad day when I had to take out my bright green eyes and just go with my regular hazel ones (I had my contacts in when I met my husband...guess he was surprised).

While at the eye doctor, I asked him if he thought I'd be able to wear them again. After an examination, he thought I'd be able to. They cost about the same as my glasses would have cost from there so I went with the contacts that allow the most oxygen in since they're healthier for the eyes. Since I won't be wearing prescription glasses with the transition lenses anymore, I'll have to remember to carry Sport Sunglasses with me to protect my eyes.

It's been years since I've been able to wear regular sunglasses. The only ones I have are from the 1990's!


RESPECT: People treat you the way you let them

I am a firm believer that people treat you the way you allow yourself to be treated. If a person is disrespecting you and hurting you, shame on them. If you don't do anything about it, a person with low moral or ethical standards will continue to be disrespectful.

This can be a spouse. It can be a friend. It can be a boss. It can even be your own mother.

I realized years ago that if I didn't EXPECT respectful behavior, and DEMAND respectful behavior, then I was going to continue to make bad choices in who I went out with and what family dysfunction was going to continue to have an impact on me. Had I continued making bad choices and had a family under those conditions, it would have brought my children into it. That was a big no-no. My kids are innocent and there was no way in the fiery depths of hell (if I believed in hell) that I would allow anything to affect them negatively that I had the power to put a stop to.

Once I realized that I wanted a family and that I deserved better, I got rid of the guy who left me sitting home all the time while he bellied up to the closest bar to get drunk (and later, come to find, pick up any skirt he could get for the last two years of our relationship) and then came home to take out all his personal angst on me. I found a man who respected me, my choices, my views, and my values. I found somebody who wanted me WITH him more often than not. I found somebody who would never think about raising a hand to me. Other than the baggage that is his ex, it's been great being valued and loved by somebody who believed in us enough not to want to do anything to ruin that, believed in our family enough not to want to do anything to hurt our kids.

Aside from intimate relationships, toxicity can exist in immediate family relationships as well. It can be a sibling or a parent. In my world, removing anything toxic that continued to bring me down and affected my day-to-day life was a necessity after several years of feeling like I was associating with emotional vampires who sucked the life right out of me with their constant state of problems they brought on themselves by their behavior or by having a screw loose and enjoying the constant drama it brought to their lives.

Nobody deserves to be disrespected. There are people who will treat you the way you should be treated and settling with what you have, that is hurting you, over what you should have because it's scary to take that is too short. Enjoy the time you're given here. There's no reason to be in a miserable relationship with a boyfriend/girlfriend, parent, spouse, friend, if all it does it bring you down.



Dreading Christmas

>> Thursday, August 20, 2009

Who else is dreading Christmas already? With school starting, that means Christmas is just around the corner and we are going to have a hard time this Christmas. It's not going to be the usual this year and I hope the kids understand and appreciate what we are able to give them.

Instead of junk, I want to pick a few good items for gifts for the kids. I want gifts where the box isn't more interesting than the gift inside (how many times has that happened?). Playmobil has nice playsets for kids to use their creativity. I know my son is going to want video games but I would like one Christmas that was video-game free. Can you imagine? I'm sure my son can't.

I'll figure out a way to get a couple nice things for each of the kids and it'll be a good lesson for my kids in appreciating what you have because there are many families who are worse off than we are. I'm not sure my stepkids will understand but we will see.


Finding Old Friends Again

I recently came back into contact with an old neighbor of mine from the last town we lived in on Facebook. She was so nice and easy to talk to. I remember that she loved my kids and she had rooster dinnerware, roosters on the walls, etc. It's been nice to get back in touch with her after three years.

I also recently found an older friend from over 15 years ago. That's been cool getting back in touch with him. He was one of my best friends (it was a friends without benefits friendship though most people didn't get that). Most people see a man and woman who seem to have a close friendship and automatically assume there's more. It seems like male and female friendships are harder to maintain when spouses come into the picture too.

I'm just happy to have hooked back up with some old friends of mine!


Strong Stomachs

>> Wednesday, August 19, 2009

One of my sisters is taking an accelerated program to become a nurse. I have two sisters who are nurses already. It's some new program (accredited obviously) they've brought into the states that shortens up the amount of time it takes to get your nursing degree.

I will be glad when she's through it. She's a single mom and having a career will be good for both her and my niece. Having one as a nurse, when the medical field will always be needed, is great.

I get queasy looking at needles and I have two, and will have three, sisters dressing in medical scrubs as nurses. I guess I didn't get the cast iron stomach gene.


School Countdown

Today my preschooler started school. She goes a half a day, four days a week and she loves it. Look at this smile:

In five days, my other three children will start school. Is it bad of me that I am excited about the idea of having a few hours a few days a week of quiet? This summer has just been way too busy. I'd like to put my kids on the bus next week and then take off somewhere by myself where nobody can find me, like a daytona beach resort, and recover from this crazy summer.


Symptom of Thyroid Disease: Skin Problems

One of the symptoms of my thyroid disease (hypothyroidism, Hashimoto's Thyroiditis, Goiter, multiple nodules) has been bad skin. My skin looks just horrid and talk about breaking out with zits! I feel like I'm a teenager again. I've recently noticed that it is causing scarring around my nose too. Just what I want to deal with at 37 years old! I feel like I should be looking for the best acne treatment, along with a better doctor to manage my thyroid disease. If it's too oily in one place, it's too dry in another. I just can't win!


Ex Allows Stepdaughter to Use Gift - Two Years Later

You'll never believe this...the ex allowed my stepdaughter to load her Kodak digital camera's software onto a computer so she can download pictures from it (two years after we bought it for her). Wasn't that nice of her?

Well, let me backtrack a little bit. She downloaded the software somewhere but the email address my stepdaughter used to send us a couple of pictures from that software was her grandparents' email address. So, I don't know if she did it from home or her grandparents house.

The kids told us that the ex is computer illiterate (nevermind that she's worked for a big city attorney for 20 years on computers)...yeah, you believe that one too? She believes that any software loaded on a computer is going to mess it up. That's what she says anyway. When she's tried to load virus software on the system (that we recommended and used ourselves with no problem), she claims it crashed her computer somehow and blamed us. I guess the software that came with my stepdaughter's digital camera was suspect because WE bought it for her (nevermind that it hadn't been opened by anyone by my stepdaughter). We're out to get her, don't ya know?

Seems to me the ex is pretending not to have anything but the most basic computer skills (how can you NOT have computer skills when you've worked for a big city attorney for two decades?) as a way to restrict contact between the kids and us with emails, facebook, myspace, exchanging pictures, etc. No big surprise. I'm just wondering if the kids finally caught on and that is why she allowed the software to finally be used that came with the camera (up until now, my stepdaughter would bring me her camera once a year and I'd download all the pics off of it and email every single one of them to her so she'd have them).

If the ex has so many computer problems she either needs to take a class and educate herself (can't imagine not being computer literate with children in the house) or have a company provide support like orange county computer services to ensure the computer systems used remain working in the way they're designed to do.


Front Loader Washing Machine Odor

>> Monday, August 17, 2009

I was thrilled when we bought front-loading machines three years ago after moving to our new house. I was happy to have "the latest" but as with most things, sometimes "the latest" isn't always the best. The rubber seal around the door gets mildew growing in it and there is a smell on my clothes that just doesn't seem to want to go away.

While researching it, I'm finding several areas in the machine that needs to be cleaned that I didn't even know existed on the machine. Google it and see what you come up with if you're having the same problem. There are several things you can do. I'm going to have to get cleaning and I'm not looking forward to that job.

I also tend to throw a load in the wash and then forget about them. The clothes get nasty when that happens! It certainly doesn't help the situation any.

That combination bathroom/laundry room is definitely getting a makeover. While I have to keep the washer and dryer and get on a regular cleaning schedule for it, I am going to have to add some fresheners in there like a Woodwick Spill-Proof Reed Diffusers. Paint, a new floor, and a nice chrome shelf to hold the necessities and the bathroom will look fresh and presentable again (and smell presentable I hope).


No Closer to Setting Date

>> Sunday, August 16, 2009

Well, we aren't any closer to figuring out when we want to renew our vows. It seems like time, but especially money, is going to be an issue for another few years (until child support ends I'd imagine).

I did find some rings that I think my husband would like. They're palladium rings. My husband likes the inside of the rings to be really smooth and solid (not hollow) so they're comfortable to wear. These rings I found are like that and the prices aren't too bad.

The bands come in many different designs but I like this one in the picture. It's different and has diamonds, which I love. They also had one that would more closely match the band my husband bought me a few years ago. Mine has celtic work on it, but the scroll work on the other palladium ring I found was nice too.


Sister Had A Home Birth in Water!

I think I posted about the birth of my niece who was born on the first day of our vacation as we were driving to the state where she was born to see my family. She was a sweet little thing, born at home in a tub of water (like her brother before her) totally naturally. I saw her the day after she was born and she was very alert. She'd taken to nursing within a half hour of her birth (probably due to the fact that there were no drugs involved in her birth and the less stressful birthing process).

It took weeks to get my daughter to latch on properly (born in the hospital with drugs). She was born in the hospital, under very stressful circumstances (she was almost born in the toilet at the hospital). Seeing how the drug they put into my IV made me stoned out of my mind, which confused me seeing how I'd never been stoned before in my life (seriously!), I can't imagine what it did to her little system. She was born so fast that the doctor didn't even have time to catch her. He was still trying to get his gloves on!

Anyway, I got sidetracked. I was talking about the natural birth my niece had. My sister is the ultimate crunchy mama. I wouldn't doubt if she dresses her in organic baby clothes as well. She makes her own baby food too. I'm not sure I'd have the courage to let go of the high-tech hospital to give birth at home. She did twice and it was a really good experience for her.


Husband Makes Me Look Like Buddy Holly?

>> Wednesday, August 12, 2009

I did something really silly. I scheduled SIX eye appointments on the same day for our family next week. On one hand, it gets them all done and over with. On the other hand, four of them are for kids! I think I should have spaced them out a bit.

I make my husband (begging works) help me pick out my glasses because when I try them on, since they are samples and not actual prescription glasses, I can't see what they look like well enough (yes, I have really bad eyes) so I have to depend on another person for help. Though the last pair he helped me pick out I wasn't too happy with when somebody said a few months ago that he liked my style of Buddy Holly. Um...really? It's definitely time for new frames!

I hope he does better this time. I get the lenses that darken in the sun like Women's Sunglasses so I'm covered rain or shine but I want really cute frames too.


Hard to Trust

>> Monday, August 10, 2009

A picture of my stepkids just hit my email in-box from the children's maternal grandparents' email address. After 14 years of them not saying a word to me, and for even longer than that for my husband since they didn't like him when he was seeing their daughter, why did a picture come from their email address? Is it bad of me to wonder "why"?

Isn't it a sad way to live that something that most people would think was a "nice" action, sending pictures, can't be trusted?


Forgot to tell y'all...

>> Saturday, August 8, 2009

When we took my stepson on vacation with us, he could barely get his shoes on. His mother had sent him with one pair of shoes and they were too small for him. We were out in the boonies when we realized this (after it took him about ten minutes to try to squeeze his feet into them when it was time for us to go outside) and we were stuck with what this small (but relaxing) rural town had to offer. So it was either Croc-like shoes or flip flops. Well, there were work boots too but who wants to wear those on a boat? Seeing how he hates Crocs, and thinks of them as women shoes, he got the flip flops. He wore them the entire time we were on vacation but put his tight shoes back on right when we got to the parking lot we were doing the exchange at before his mother got there (why I wonder?).

Is it that difficult to keep a kid in shoes that fit? She only has two children to manage; I have four and mange to keep their toes from being squashed just fine.


Child Support for Horses?

I just saw something that, while not surprising, irritated me. There is a horse up for adoption because the owner lost her child support and can't afford to keep the horse anymore. This is her horse from the way the ad read, she rides it...not the child's horse. If she can't afford the horse without child support, which is SUPPOSED to be for the child, then she was using child support to pay for HER horse.

That's not right. I love horses. We have two horses ourselves but I don't get child support to pay for them!

There needs to be more accountability with how child support is being spent. If it's not spent on the child, why is the ex getting it? Why are monies leaving the other parent's home to pay for the care of a horse that isn't even his child's horse?


Stressful Eater?

>> Thursday, August 6, 2009

Do you eat under stress (and what isn't stressful about dealing with an ex or stepfamily chaos)? I'm not an emotional eater yet. Are you looking for a good attorney as well as the best weight loss supplement to counteract emotional eating habits? I tend to beat up my body in other ways due to stress (TMJ from clenching my jaw when I'm upset). I had to have been pretty stressed to cause so much damage to my jaw over the years because my jaws are really messed up.


Mesothelioma Help

>> Wednesday, August 5, 2009

If you or a loved one is dealing with malignant Mesothelioma, there are resources online. I don't know anybody that is dealing with it don't hear about it too often, other than to see commercials on television but there are 2,000-3,000 cases reported every year. It affects men more than women. Experts predict that we will continue to see a diagnosis for Mesothelioma over the next 15 - 20 years due to exposure to Asbestos.

The siding on our old house used to be asbestos and it was chalky down the side of the house until we painted over it, hopefully sealing it up. I refused to plant any type of garden there though because I didn't know what washed into the soil every time it rained from the siding.


PAS: Parental Alienation Syndrome Video

>> Tuesday, August 4, 2009


Fathers 4 Justice Video Ad


Vacation with Stepson Cont'

>> Sunday, August 2, 2009

After deciding we were going to take vacation anyway, I had the brilliant idea that we should take my stepson with us up north to his paternal grandparents' house since my stepdaughter was already scheduled to go to band camp. A wicked stepmom would not have done that (but the ex hates me anyway:)

First we had the visit with my side of the family and both my stepkids were there for a few hours that day. They had their first ever boat ride in a speed boat with my brother and had fun. We got my stepson to karaoke to 'Fergilicious' at my sister's and it was hilarious. My other sister had her baby that morning we were driving up so I took the girls with me to visit my new niece (my stepdaughter was the first one to raise her hand and say she wanted to go with me:) Then they went back to their mother's house (we were picking up my stepson the next morning to take him north with us for the rest of our vacation).

When we went to pick him up from his mother's house, I stayed in the car with our four-year-old in her car seat and the other kids and hubby got out of the car (they stay outside during exchange...hubby doesn't go in her house). My stepdaughter came outside too and came up to my car window to hug me in front of parasite, I mean her mother. Wonder how that went over? When they all got back into the car and we were on our way, hubby said quietly, "That was uncomfortable." He doesn't enjoy seeing her either.

Off we go on our trip. The ride up is pretty unremarkable. While there, my stepson shows us why he is overweight - that boy put away practically a whole pizza by himself! At breakfast, he ate half the package of bacon by himself. For dinner, he ate a cheeseburger, hot dog, then another cheeseburger. He used to be slim but solid muscle growing up, was on the swim team during his summer with us a few years ago and won ribbons and a trophy for it. We play volleyball and soccer in our backyard...his mother doesn't seem to do stuff like that with them. Sports never seemed to be encouraged over there so he does nothing now...and it shows. He's embarrassed even to swim without his shirt off. If he wants to eat like THAT (and a lot of teenaged boys do), he really needs to be doing a decent amount of physical activity, if not school-sponsored then some form of exercise outside of school. Too many kids today don't get enough physical activity. It's sad because he is unhappy with how he looks...ashamed of it.

It went ok while we were up north. We did a lot of joking and laughing. My stepson was laughing and said, "We sure are a raunchy family." I was glad to hear the "we" out of his mouth including him with us as a family. I was on his team during a game and we won. I betcha he didn't realize his ole stepmom had a brain. I believe I saw a look on his face that he was impressed, lol. We took him tubing for the first time. He had fun and I got it on video when he fell in.

To take my stepson home, we had to add a couple extra hours of drive time onto our long drive home so it took about eight hours to get home instead of the 5-1/2 that it usually takes. We met his mother close to where she works for the exchange in a parking lot. Yeah us. It was quick, no extra chatting or anything like that. That requires a mature, rational, emotionally healthy individual who wanted to stop 14 years of the same ole, same old...that's not her.

It seemed like the entire vacation was run, run, run and we didn't have any time to ourselves but when we got home, we had a couple days to reconnect.


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