Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Concocting Dinner....

Concocting Dinner..... did I spell that right?

I suppose I'm the only one who starts making dinner without having a clue what it will end up being.... I wing it as I go... REALLY??? You mean you don't have your menu's planned out a week at a time? Maybe there is hope for me yet.

Today, I took a nap (rare in itself, but sorely needed). But before I did, I had the where-with-all to actually remember to take the chicken out of the freezer to defrost (another rare moment).

So, chicken for dinner tonight. I usually buy frozen, skinned, chicken breasts.... I may cook from scratch, but I would rather not pluck the bird! (done that too!).

When I woke up, it was time to make dinner (yes, a late nap), so I thought, what do I do with this? I'm still half asleep and I have to make dinner now.

So I sleepily went into the kitchen, rinsed the chicken (cause it was now unfrozen and sitting in it's own slimy juices and not looking (or feeling) all that appetizing. Hmmm, so this is what chicken feels like when you actually remember to defrost it first... Okay, back to work....Then I cut it into little cubes. I know, a dangerous thing to do when half asleep and the knives are VERY sharp. Lesson hopefully well learned here, I have already managed to cut off part of my finger about 6 months ago so I was extra careful to keep my fingers well out of the way.

I get out the jar of extra virgin coconut oil, and begin cooking the chicken. Note to self: next time, cut up the chicken after it is cooked, this turned out a bit dry.

Now what? Think....

I put on a pot of water to boil. Will make rice macaroni noodles for a chicken/macaroni salad. That sounds good for a warm summer day.

I raid the fridge for ingredients... wilted celery, green onions, tomatoes, pickles. I read somewhere that if you put wilted celery in a bowl of ice water, it will perk up... testing theory.

My mom once made this really good chicken dinner where it was kinda like haystacks, but included lettuce. She cut the lettuce into thin 1/4 inch strips, then cut them to be about 2 inches long. It was all served like a salad, lettuce, rice, chicken and all the other ingredients in haystacks. That is sounding good to me, but I already put the macaroni in the water.... slight variation.

Sent Danny a text to see if he could get some lettuce on the way home... darn it, need ranch dressing too.

When you wing it you are supposed to use what you have on hand.... I'm not doing such a good job of that today....

The celery perked up enough I think I can use it. Chopping that, next comes the pickles, a tomato, the green onions, olives from the cupboard.

But before that, the timer goes off and the macaroni is done. The phone rings... Rice macaroni overcooks quickly, so I have to get that draining.... what to do? I opt to drain the macaroni so I get to the phone just as the ringing ends... Thank goodness for caller ID, I return the call and take care of that.

So I get back to the kitchen and think "I need an onion". So I peel, slice and begin to chop up the onion into little bits and look over to see the green onions..... dang it, this was supposed to have green onions, and they would taste better.... there is now one medium onion, chopped and ready to go, in a baggie in my freezer. I love convenience.

Back to the chopping board. I begin to chop the pickle then realize... I've changed the menu, and pickle does not go with haystacks... even if it is made with rice macaroni instead of rice. So back into the jar the pickles go.

Send another text to Danny... I'll meet you at FM, (Fred Meyer's) and bring you home. I'll pick up the food myself. I need to get pineapple, cashews, raisins, as well as the lettuce and ranch dressing. So much for winging it...

So finally, after my quick trip to FM and getting Danny, I return home and finish chopping. Everything is spread out in little bowls, build your own plate style. I would have taken a picture if my camera weren't broken.

Dinner turned out pretty good tonight.... now that I have all the ingredients, maybe next time I do this I really will be winging it......

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

As Soon As I Reach the Top of One Mountain, I See Another...

Do you ever get so overwhelmed with life that you just want to say "I've had enough! Can I go home now?" I seem to be in that place an awful lot lately over the past several years.

Bridgette, Bobby, and I went to SSA this morning. That's the Social Security Administration for those lucky few who have never had direct dealings with them. Since Bobby has moved back in with me, we needed to get his case transferred over to my area. I was dreading it. In the past my experience with SSA has been hours of waiting; a stern, cold worker who mostly grunted; and getting chewed out at least once in the interview for not having followed some rule I didn't know anything about because it was a new rule since the last time I had gone in and gotten chewed out.

Today was different. In just an hour we were done! And the worker was..... get this.... smiling and pleasant! I had made one mistake, and he didn't chew me out.... in fact, he said it was no big deal. I didn't know that Bobby could have no legal access to the bank account, I thought it had to be in his name. So I had to go back to the bank and get a payee account set up. We are changing banks because of problems with the old bank. The new bank was a breeze too.....we were on a roll today!

So why am I feeling overwhelmed? Because this was only part of it. I still need to get a guardianship set up.... at least I think I do. I keep going back and forth on this issue. There are pro/cons to both sides of it. I really don't know what to do, and when I start thinking about it too much, an anxiety attack begins. This is taking skill now to be writing about it without my heart wanting to beat itself out of my chest and my head spinning from hyperventilation.

Breathe Sandy..... Breathe.......

Does anyone out there know about these things? I've become practically paralyzed by it. Paperwork has always been an issue for me, and considering I have dealt so much with SSA, you would think I've done my lifetime allotment of it. But there is always more. I don't even seem to be able to pick up a phone to make an appointment with an attorney.... I panic instead.

Is it to Bobby's advantage for me to do this? Is it something good for me to do for me? How is he best protected? Can I be hurt by doing this more than he would be protected? Is there so much continual paperwork to be submitted yearly that I would get buried? (I was told today by someone who has been a guardian that the courts require a lot of documentation on a yearly basis).

Oh, how I wish I could lock us up in some protective cocoon and just live out our lives in peace. Just dealing with regular daily stuff is hard enough, why do I keep getting monkey wrenches thrown in?...... Okay, so today I dealt pretty good with the monkey wrench (bank account error). I really don't have to do anything else......today.

Just Breathe Sandy.....

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Take a Walk......

I think I discovered why my mind has been such a blank as to subjects to write about... I stopped taking my walks... often I come up with my ideas as I am trudging along on the roadside, telling myself, one foot in front of the other, I can do this...... But I stopped doing it, so many reason, ie excuses... no time, my foot hurts, I'm tired already, it's hot, it's cold, the list can go on forever, but they are just excuses. I need to do this for me.

It helps my back, it helps my mood. It is just a healthy thing to do. Today I made myself do it, despite feeling cruddy. I do feel better now, and I decided to treat myself to lunch/dinner from Baja Fresh. Yummy steak/shrimp bowl. I love those, with lots of pico whatever you call it and pineapple salsa on it. So good.

Today, as I was heading home after reaching my half-way mark, I passed a couple on the side of the road, begging for money. I wonder if I would ever feel that desperate to do that kind of thing, I hope not. I think with my kids and other family members, they would not let it get to that point for me. But I am determined to find a way so that would never become an issue, either one.

I forced myself out today. My throat hurts, my sinuses are clogged. I couldn't resist the sour cream last night and I think I am having a really bad allergic reaction this time. I think it is time to give up dairy, at least uncooked dairy.

Eating is kinda becoming a bummer!! Too many things coming off the list.

But not totally... That steak/shrimp bowl is calling to me. I put Twilight on, I intend to do a marathon tonight, all three movies if I manage to stay awake.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Do I Really Want to Call Them That?

My favorite sins.....

Ever heard that phrase? I heard it again yesterday. I'd heard it before, but for some reason yesterday I started really thinking about it. Those words don't seem to belong together, at least not if you are wanting to be a good person. Sin is a no-no. It's bad. I'm trying to be good, so why would have have a favorite something that identifies me as bad? What exactly does it mean to me?

Everyone sins.... day in.... day out.... we goof.... we blunder.... we get lazy.... we get defiant just a little.... we ignore the pricklings just this once.... okay, I say we but I can really only speak for me.... but I certainly am not alone in this. Am I?

I had thought about listing a few of my "favorite sins" here, but then decided against it. That really should remain private between me and the Lord. But I definitely have some. Not huge, "oh my gosh I can't believe she does that!" kind of sins. But does that really matter? Sin is sin, it only takes one to separate me from my Father.

What is sin? My definition is simply something I do that turns me away from God. Something I do that shows I am less than perfect. And boy am I less than perfect! Yet, He is perfect and cannot and does not abide in imperfection. But instead of looking "down his nose" at me, He reaches out to lift me up, when I let Him. How do I let Him? I take advantage of His gift of the Atonement.

And the most incredible part to me is that my part is so simple.... not necessarily easy at times, but always simple. All I have to do is admit I did wrong, desire to not do it again and mean it, and ask forgiveness. That second part is where the "favorite sins" make it not so easy at times. I need help in getting rid of the "favorite" part so that I can get rid of the "sin" part. He helps with that as well, isn't that incredible too?!

Oh, how I am grateful for the Atonement! Without it there would be no motivation to keep going. I think I would have given up a long time ago. I feel a sadness in my heart for those who do not understand how wonderful it is. That our Father loves us so much that He gave us this incredible gift to make it possible to be united with Him forever. That our Elder Brother loves us so much that he gave his very life to rescue us.

Do I believe that both my Father in Heaven and my Savior Jesus Christ know me by name? That the relationship is that personal? That they know me, my weaknesses, and yes, my favorite sins and still love me and want me back?

The answer is a resounding YES!!

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Bullying Is Never An Option!! Part 2

I started talking about this yesterday. A conversation started because someone said some hurtful things in a posting on Moms of Adult Kids in CafeMom. The original post stated that there have been cases where teens have actually taken their own lives from the depression created from being bullied on social sites. There were many responses to the subject, and a lot of similar stories.

Then a member posted that if someone chooses to take their life because of something someone else said, then they probably already had emotional problems. I again responded:

I agree, and they need help, gentle and real. I have been suicidal in the past, I know the hopelessness that engulfs that mindset.

I am a huge believer in personal responsibility. To me this is a good reason why it is important to always treat others with respect and kindness. You never know what could trigger another....... If I said or did something to someone else out of meanness, and they make a poor decision because of my selfishness, I believe I have some responsibility towards that outcome.... I may not be able to control others, but I can control me. I do not want to be purposefully responsible for another persons pain.

I do really feel this way. Too many people today do not take responsibility for themselves, their actions, or the consequences of their actions.

If a teen, through goofing off, causes an accident and someone gets hurt, should they/the parents pay the doctor/hospital bill. YES!! Most definitely!! Yet when that question was posted I was amazed at how many women said "no, kids goof off, things like this happen".

I don't get it? No wonder this society is so messed up. I wonder if this is the result of too many laws? Are we so governed by something outside ourselves that we loose touch with what ought to have been created inside? So few take personal responsibility anymore. If there isn't a specific law written to cover it, then you are safe. WHAT?? That sounds like my autistic son's reasoning..... It is only wrong if he gets caught!

Personal responsibility is a fundamental principal. It should be a basic learned from a very young age. It is as important as "don't touch a hot stove", or "look both ways before you cross the street". We all carry responsibility in our interactions with other people. May we always keep that in mind, and remember that everyone is a loved child of God and deserves decent treatment.

Bullying Is Never An Option!! Part 1

I mentioned I have joined a new site, CafeMom. I am in a group called Moms of Adult Kids, and one of the other ladies asked the question if anyone had ever been bullied. She did this because she noticed it happened in a posting earlier this week. This is not allowed, yet it happens.

A lot of women responded. It is so heartbreaking to read the same stories, different faces. I do not understand WHY someone feels they need to bully.

I, myself, lived through some major bullying, but writing it out just got too long. So I posted instead:

Yes, I was bullied badly as a kid. Badly, daily, tortured. I grew to really hate school.

I started to write about my turning point, but it just got too long. Suffice it to say, I found my power, with the help of someone who cared enough to kindly guide me. He didn't judge me or put me down. He saw what I needed, then provided a way for me to find it for myself. And since that time I have tried to pay it forward. We do all have voices, just some of us loose them in the roar that goes on around us. I pray I will never be part of that roar in someone else's life.

She responded back that she would really like it if I told my story. So I figured, what the hay, you know me, the writer, I can do that.... I think it turned out too long, but I accidentally hit a wrong key and it posted before I was ready... oh well.... I don't intend to write another long story there.... I think I was save those for here.

Fourth grade, new school. We had moved from CA to OR, and didn't know the new school did not provide school supplies as our old school did. Second day of school. A math assignment had been given, there were 4 addition problem, and we were to add, subtract, multiply, & divide, so 16 answers in all. My mom had been at work all day and did not know we needed paper, and we were still not unpacked. I misunderstood the assignment, and only did the adding, on a small piece of scratch paper I managed to find. When the teacher asked for our papers and I turned it in, he started laughing at me and my tiny piece of paper. He announced to the class how stupid I was. I started to argue. I knew I was smart, I had been in TAG at my other school. I told him so, my IQ was over 130, the old school had told me so. He laughed again, and said he had seen all our scores and I was the dumbest student in the class and my score was way less than 100. This was in front of the whole class.

The next day he called me to the front of the class, and told me to stand with my face to the chalkboard. He then asked the class, "Who wants to see me make Sandy cry?" Then he goaded the class, I don't remember what all he said, but it went on for several minutes. Then he said "Ok Sandy, turn around and see who your friends are." Every hand was raised but one. JK was the only one who didn't raise her hand. Yes, I started crying. He then told me to go to my seat and he called JK to the front of the class and repeated what he did to me. I cannot remember what I did, whether I raised my hand or not, I do know I was pretty numb by then. I think he goaded me that I would have to come up again if I didn't raise my hand.

Home life wasn't much better. I had to be very careful around dad, one never knew what would set him off. I know I did complain at some point about not liking my teacher, but dad talked to him at parent/teacher conference and the teacher told him I just wanted too much attention. Later, my younger sister got this same teacher and I BEGGED my parents to put her in a different class. They didn't listen, he did the same to her, but she was forwarned so her refused to look. That teacher set me up, and the bullies in the class caught on really fast. I was called names, grabbed at, pushed down, and humiliated almost on a daily basis. It also followed me through the grades. Any complaining I managed at home fell on deaf ears, and it would have been very guarded.

My body developed early, so by the time I was in the 6th grade, I was well endowed, not fat, but big breasted. Their favorite thing to do to me was "titty twisters", oh how that hurt! I was so afraid of my dad, I didn't dare tell, he would have blamed me anyway and punished me for it.

A couple of those boys JH and SF, lived across the street from me. I had to catch the bus at the same stop. That was torture, but I got good at timing myself so I would get to the stop just in time. I had to be careful about it though, because if I missed the bus I would have to face dad. I finally talked my parents into letting me catch the bus at a different stop. But those boys still rode the same bus. I tried to stay away from them, but the bus was always pretty full, and the kids on the bus would set me up to have to sit near them.

7th grade began as the rest, but there was a new bus driver, and it was a different school. This driver saw how I was being treated and talked to me about defending myself. I said I couldn't, I was too afraid of getting into trouble. He could not convince me that I had the right to defend myself. I could not defend myself at home from dad, it just seemed so foreign to me.

One day I was called into the principal's office after another torturious ride, and I was so scared I was in trouble. JH and SF had bounced their basketball off my head to each other. I had such a headache by the time we got to school. The bus driver was there. The principal asked me why I wouldn't defend myself and I told him I was afraid of getting into trouble. It took some time and talking, but he finally got me to believe I could fight back and not get into trouble. He said I could do whatever I had to, say whatever I wanted to say, and fight as dirty as I needed. I was dumbfounded over that, but a spark began to glow inside me that the torture could be stopped.

Next day, JH from across the street, and his little brother started in on me. I stood up (first rule broken), and hit one with my bag that had my gym shoes in it. (second rule broken) I got him right in the groin. As he doubled over I grabbed the other by the hair and smashed his head into the back of my seat. Now he was the one with the headache. (3rd rule broken). I sat back down and couldn't believe I had done what I had done. I was shaking. As I left the bus the driver smiled at me.

I was again called into the principal's office. The boys were there. They were smirking cause they thought I was in big trouble. The principal asked me to tell what had happened. I told what I had done. He turned to the boys and asked if I had told the truth. They smirked again, yes! I had done those horrible things to them. The principal turned back to me and said "Good for you! I am glad you finally defended yourself, you are excused back to class". He then turned to the boys. "We are calling your mom, you are both suspended for three days!"

I floated for the rest of the day, and NONE of the boys ever bothered me again.

I do not advocate violence, but sometimes it is the only solution. Although I had not ever fought back, I had told them to stop so many times it was useless.

I sometimes wonder about those boys. Do they remember what they did to me? Do they care? If given the opportunity, would they apologize to me for the past? They were forgiven a long time ago, but I still wonder.

I feel bad for my mom when she hears stories about my childhood. During all that time that Dad was being a horrible parent, she was killing herself working to keep us warm and fed. My mom was the breadwinner, not my dad. The roles were reversed, even though she didn't like it. She really had no idea of what was going on at home.

So sorry Mom, and I love you.

(continued tomorrow)

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Shall I make it Two?

Second day in a row, after a very long absence. Thanks Reema, It's nice to know I am loved :-)

I've joined a new social site. It's called CafeMom. It's really a forum, where you can ask and answer questions and get to know other mom's you have things in common with.

Tiffany told me about it. She has been on for a while, and because she was so active in it she was asked to be a moderator. One of the perks of being a mod is they receive store gift cards each month as a thank you for their participation. Tiff gets a $50 Target gift card every month. That is for one group. You can be asked to be a mod for several different groups, and get a gift card for each.

Hmmmmmm...... the creative financing widgets in my head started turning. If I can manage to become a CafeMom Mod on a few of those groups, I could count it towards the income I have to come up with to replace the alimony that dries up next May. Having a job would be best, but requires I am actually able to do the job without stressing out. So far that has not been a reality. I have been really concerned over what I am going to do when the alimony runs out. I'm not going to make it very far on just SSD. My first ex-husband will be court ordered to pay me child support for forever, he is soooo far behind. But with his inconsistency, I really do not want to be holding my breath for his payments.

If I could manage to become a mod on 3 groups, that could get me $150 in gift cards a month. I'm not sure about all the stores offered, but just Target and Walmart would pretty much cover most my shopping expenditures each month. My goal is 3, more would be great. I could get groceries, non-food household items, clothes, etc., and not have to have cash for those purchases.

Yes, I can be creative. I can make new friends. I love to write. I do believe this could work! I will still need to find a way to make some cash, but every gift card will reduce the cash I will need.

I've been having fun. I still feel shy, haven't put my pic up yet..... we know how long it took me to get it up here. One of the ladies said today that I brighten her day. That made me smile.

But I have also noticed some of those women think they have license to be mean in their comments. I guess I've lead a sheltered life, actually I know I have, I have been shocked to see how other women present themselves. I try not to expose myself to that kind of viciousness.


Isn't it weird? I have lived through an incredibly abusive childhood, endured one bad marriage that included abuse, abandonment, infidelity, and crazy-making, endured another bad marriage that included crazy-making and infidelity, have PTSD and fibromyalgia..... yet I say I have lived a sheltered life?

I think I need my head examined!!