Category Archives: Question of the Day

I think my brain is going to blow up

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Do you ever have a problem that turns into a series of problems? That you see no resolution to? I am having one of those, and my head is becoming tired and dizzy by spinning in circles around the not-to-be-seen solution to my situation.
You see, it’s one of those issues where I need to fix ‘A’ but to do that I need to do ‘B’ but in order to do that I need to do ‘C’ which brings me back to how in the world then can I do ‘A’?!?!

See, Kiki hates online school, but has no desire to go the large public high school. And I hated my large public high school and have no intention of subjecting her to that. Not to mention the whole worldly indoctrination that goes on in our public schools these days. The only  reason we did online this year was so she could have the “proper accreditation” so she could go to a “real school”. (We did a homeschool co-op for 1st – 8th grades). So.

We found  a private, Christian school that we intend on sending her to for – hopefully – the rest of her high school years. They gave us a scholarship of 50% off which is the highest they go, so with that we think we can cover it. Then, we got an unexpected check in the mail that exactly covers the registration fees, so that was cool!

Here’s the problem…  the school is in a tiny town in Outer Slobovia. If we move closer to school, we will be a ridiculously far distance from church (and we don’t just go to church on Sunday – we have small groups and youth group and various other things we like to go to).  Also, in order for us to move out at all, it’s been determined that I need a full time job. Which, A. I hate the thought of. and B. Where? When? How? Do I get a job during school hours, or after school, and how then do I get her to school, and participate in things, and do I work close to home (which will be Where??) or do I work close to her school (right! Middle of nowhere, remember)… It’s like everything has to come together and I don’t know where to start! Okay, we started with the school… but now what?

I know God knows. He can see the big picture where I can’t. But I wish He’d let me in on it, because the stress is sending me over the edge.

Not to mention the stress I am feeling from Kiki’s upcoming birthday… but that’s a post for another day.

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Thoughtless Sister Strikes Again

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I know, I know… I only come here to complain. Where, well else should I go? Huh??

Tomorrow is the 4th of July. Holiday and all that. So, we wanted a low-key event, family barbeque, some ‘safe and sane’ fireworks, call it good. Mom and I asked my sister if she and her family wanted to come over. Fine. Because they are coming, I told Kiki that her friend couldn’t come, because I wanted her to spend time with her cousin. My sister later told me she’d invited a gal and her two daughters (who are around Kiki’s age) and that’s fine, because we all know this family, they are going thru some really hard times right now, and they’ll be fun to have over. No problem.

This afternoon I went to the market and bought the amount of groceries I knew it would take to cover the amount of people I was expecting.

Then tonight when I got home, my mom was freaking out about the ‘extra people’ my sister has invited. A total of at least 10 more than we’d planned on! First off, isn’t it pretty rude to invite people over to someone else’s house?? Without asking first? Secondly, these are people my mom doesn’t even know. They are my sister’s friends, not family friends. I do happen to know them – and one couple I don’t like. They annoy me, and the husband annoys Alan so badly I am not even telling him that that guy will be here, because honestly, Alan might decide to go elsewhere… yeah, it’s that bad. And I know I have mentioned to my sister that we don’t really care for this particular couple. And yet….

Her comment was “well, we just have a hard time saying ‘no'”…. Really?? No to what? When someone asks what you are doing how about you reply “Oh, just a little family get-together”. And I bet that person doesn’t invite themself to your family’s event, so what is it that you’d be saying “no” to?

The truth is, my sister not only thinks ‘the more the merrier’ (a trait that my mom, my dad, my husband and myself do NOT share) she also wants to be involved in every little thing – to not miss out on anything – and the only way to not miss out on what your friends might be doing is to be sure your friends are doing it with you.

The other problem this creates is that a couple of these families have kids that Kiki’s cousin is good friends with – so now that I have told Kiki she can hang out with her cousin and therefore doesn’t need to have a friend over, her cousin will now be ditching her for the other kids. (And yes, she will, That’s how it works.)

I was really looking forward to tomorrow. Both Alan and I have the day off work, and I thought it would just be a fun little day. But once again, my sister’s selfishness has thrown a shadow over my life. I am trying to make the best of it… I am sure there will be parts of the day that will be nice. However, I am absolutely dreading the moment Alan finds out about who is coming… that could really make it crappy.

Wait…. whoa! Stop! I’m not ready for this ride!

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My daughter has a boyfriend.

Okay, well, she has a boy who really likes her. Who calls her. Texts her.

She likes him back, but I suspect (and she admits) part of the reason she likes him is because he likes her and that feels kinda nice. He’s a classmate, and they’ve been friends for awhile now (she actually prefers the boys in her class because… well, because they aren’t like the girls! Petty, judgmental, fickle… if you’ve ever been or ever known a teenage girl you know what I’m talking about.)  However, he’s not the boy she’s been crushing on for the last year… (who is a church friend; doesn’t go to her school. And who does not seem to like her back…)

But. She’s 14. In the 8th grade. Too soon for a boyfriend.

It’s not like she can date or anything, and we (her, me, her dad) have had extensive talks on protecting her heart, and staying true to her beliefs and well, to be honest, regrets, and how not to have them. Still… she’s 14. I remember how I felt at 14… in fact, in my 8th grade year I was madly in love with a boy, and he with me. We made plans for our senior prom (yes, years away) and how many kids we would have one day – as if we had a clue! But we thought we did… and we did some serious kissing!! I am pretty much telling my daughter “do as I say not as I did”.   Because I know how the other end of it feels… all these years later I am still missing a little piece of my heart.

But, part of me thinks it’s cute, and sweet… so I am really torn on just how to proceed.  Do I monitor her calls? Read her texts? Leave her be?  I trust her, and I know her desire is to do the right thing. On the other hand, she can be a bit of a follower, and the few times she’s been in serious trouble it’s been because she’s allowed a friend to talk her into doing something that she knew darn well ahead of time she was not to do.  So, its a concern.

Oh, how I miss miss miss the days of toddlerhood! Even she said to me the other day “Why can’t I still be 5 years old? Life was so much easier then.”

Do you think it’s rude to force someone to dress up for your party?

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Okay, so first I will admit I am cranky, so that may be coloring my viewpoint… but, still.

I have a friend acquaintance in one group of people I know who is turning 40 this year. (I am not trying to be rude… I just don’t really consider her a “friend”… I like her, she’s a nice (if albeit very tightly wound) individual, but it’s not like we ever do anything together outside of this particular group.

She is having a birthday party this weekend.  She is going all out – renting a event center, hiring a band and a bartender… I mean, making it a huge deal. Which is fine… I mean, not my style; I’m more of a garden-party-in-my-backyard kind of gal – but that’s fine.  She has made it a “themed” party, which again, not my style but fine. Whatever floats her boat. (That’s really more of my teenaged daughter’s kind of party, lol!) But what bothers me about the whole deal is that she’s making a really big deal about all of her guests dressing up in the theme.  I mean, to the extent of trying to guilt me into dressing up! I asked her “are we uninvited if we don’t dress in costume?” and she was like “Yes! You have to dress up! You do NOT want to come to my party not in costume!” I persisted “seriously, I don’t  have anything like that to wear” to which she replied “go to the thrift shop! You can find stuff cheap!” Okay. I understand I could get stuff at the thrift store. However, if I have to buy something for myself, my husband and my daughter, even if I can find $5.00 items, if it’s a top and skirt or pants each, that’s $30.00… $30.00 for stuff I will never, ever wear again. When I am barely scraping by financially.  Which makes me feel like I am being charged a fee to attend someone’s birthday party. 

My daughter usually has themed birthday parties. She always dresses up, and we decorate in the theme. We always, always make it very clear in the invitations that dressing up is optional, and that she has extra items if anyone wants to borrow something. I would never want to make someone feel uncomfortable if they don’t enjoy dressing up, nor would I want them to feel pressured to spend money they may not have to attend a party. I guess not everyone feels as I do.

What do you think?

Taking a poll: Do you share your recipes?

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I am interested in how you all feel about this.  I never really gave it much thought; I mean, in my family, if you wanted a recipe for something, you asked and it was given.  I had heard of people who don’t give out their recipes, but I think I didn’t really believe these people existed – like, that was just in sitcoms or something!  I mean, what’s the big deal, right? 

Okay, for the sake of argument, I can see if you are some famous chef with a restaurant and your livelihood depends on people paying to come eat your meals that you have painstakingly created, maybe you shouldn’t give out your recipes.  Although there will always be people like me who’d rather pay to eat in your restaurant than cook it myself.  Not to mention some people can’t cook worth a crap (see: me) so they wouldn’t be able to make it good anyhow…

I have to admit (see above) I can’t cook.  I can bake; in fact I am pretty darn good at it.  I make great cookies and pretty good other dessert-y stuff.  I can even do really well at some breakfast stuff like pancakes and french toast, because that’s actually more like baking.  But I can’t make a meal decently.  My idea of a good home cooked meal for my family is grilled cheese sandwiches with tomato soup, or maybe spaghetti with jar sauce.  Yeah, I’m lame. And I’m okay with that.  Actually, my piece de resistance is “Dinner in a Pumpkin” and it’s that time of year, isn’t it?!  Anyway, even though baking is my “thing” I will share any cookie recipe you ask me for, and I will even give you hints or suggestions that have helped me make that recipe better.  I have a friend who is a fabulous chef, who is from another country.  If you ask her for a recipe, she will not only agree to share, but she’ll invite you over to eat so she can show you exactly how to prepare that particular dish! 

So, fast forward to today.  We had a big extended-family get together, and it turns out that one of my relatives (married into the family, not born into) refuses to share recipes.  With anyone.  Not even family.  Not even with her mother-in-law, who is a pretty good cook and is apparently pretty annoyed with the situation!  I asked her to explain her reasons, because I seriously can’t understand why you wouldn’t share.  Basically she said because they are her recipes, (like they got passed down from her grandma, I guess not out of a cookbook, altho I am guessing granny got them out of a cookbook at some point… she admitted she doesn’t really know.  I mean, reeeeally)  and she doesn’t want anyone else to be able to make her special stuff. Because then she wouldn’t be the one making the special stuff. Or, because they’d make it wrong then feed it to her when she came over and she’d be disappointed in it.  Something like that.  Honestly, it just sounded really – selfish.  Or, as another family member put it –  “Geez, you’re like a little kid sitting in a corner with all your toys hidden behind you, who wants to play with the other kids’ toys but just yells “MINE” when anyone wants to play with yours.”  Lol.  Exactly!

So, what about you?  Do you share, or not?  If not, why not?  Can you give me a better reason than selfishness?

(I stole this pic off the internet.  I give credit to – whomever credit is due.  Thank you.)

It felt like serving drinks to an alcoholic

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Which is wrong. Totally wrong. And that is how it felt today.

 See, I work in a little boutique clothing store (and if you knew me really well, you would be on the floor laughing hysterically right now.  Yeah. I am so not a fashionista; it’s really not the right job for me.) However, that’s not the point. We have this customer who is from, uhm, I can’t remember… an Eastern European country. She speaks very little English.  Anyway, I waited on her last week, and it was kind of weird… she paid in cash, removed all the tags right there at the counter, wouldn’t let me bag it, and didn’t want her reciept.  Well, it turns out she’s a shopaholic and a hoarder – her family has even staged an intervention of sorts (which, aparently, didn’t work).  Her husband cut her off financially, so she got a job, cashes her paychecks, and goes shopping. (We are a small, locally-owned store; we know stuff about our customers that other big, chain-store employees probably wouldn’t know!) Well, she came in again today.  She bought several items; paid cash, cut off the tags.  Picked up some more stuff; paid cash, cut off the tags, stuffed it all into a huge purse/bag thingie she also was buying.  This went on about half a dozen times, until she ran out of cash and started using the credit card.  You know, last time I just thought it was weird, but now that I know the story?  Well, it just seemed so wrong! I wanted to tell her “Please, just stop!  Just go home, quit spending money on this stuff!”  But, that isn’t my place, is it.  No, as much as I wanted to, my job is to smile and serve the customer.

What would you do?

Lifting weights vs. lifting weight ~ why isn’t it as helpful??

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Lifting weights are touted as a great way to get into shape.  You can get all buff and tough by lifting weights; you can amp up your weight loss or body building routine by putting ankle weights on while you work out, or by carrying dumbells as you walk, right?

So.  I am overweight.  Quite overweight.  Every time I move, I am “weight lifting”!  I have to lift all that weight to get up off the couch or the floor.  Every time I go on my morning walk I am packing around a whole lot of weight.  I’ve been doing this for years!

My muscles should be so totally ripped by now.