Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Is It Really Time... ALREADY???

I feel like a broken record whenever I say this, but honest and truly, I canNOT believe how fast this school year has gone! I mean, I feel like I was just shopping for back-to-school clothes for three children who'd gone through MAJOR growth spurts over the summer. Then, as the first weeks of school unfolded, scouring shelves and displays, with school supply lists in hand, looking for all of the gazillion items that my children's respective teachers wanted them to come to the classroom armed with.

Now, as quick as a wink, it's mid-June, and the school year is almost over. The littlest little has already gotten her certificate of completion for her first year of preschool, and had her last, bittersweet day with her beloved teachers and school chums this past Friday. She's being rather impatient, waiting for her older brother and sister to complete their respective school years, wandering aimlessly from room to room, looking for things to occupy her time. Unfortunately, her dear old Ma is not a suitable replacement for those young legs that can run and play and keep up with the likes of her.

I, myself, am hoping that these last few days endlessly drag on. Not that I'm not excited for them to move forward another year up the scholastic ladder. I'm just NOT looking forward to the constant drone of "I'm boooorrrrrreeeedddddd!!!" from their mouths, as we wait the dreaded few weeks before school ends and day camp begins.

It's almost impossible to imagine, but come next Tuesday, I'll "officialy" have a fifth grader and a Sophomore in high school. Can't someone please tell me which magic button to push, to slow down the growth process with these children? I'm just one step closer to watching them drive off to college, and out of my motherly grasp, for ::gasp!:: what could be the very last time.

I used to barely hear the statement as I was growing up and into my adulthood. Only now do I fully understand it's truth and perspective -- children really do grow up so fast!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

April Showers Bring May Flowers

At long last.... a new blog post! :)

I'm so sorry I've been away for so long. You'd never thing that the dog days of winter would be so crazy, but really, they have. First, we endured February school vacation, while being pummelled with lots and LOTS snow (so much for "best laid plans"!). Then, at the end of the month, we celebrated the littlest little's fourth birthday (still not quite sure how she got so big so fast, but that's for another time). She wanted a Chuck-E-Cheese party with some of her preschool friends, and that's exactly what she got. The way I looked at it, it saved me a TON of clean up, food prep, decorating, stressing....and then more clean up! :)

March brought with it more snow, as well as my husband's 45th birthday, which we celebrated with much less fanfare than his youngest daughter! A homemade spice cake and a lovely, homecooked meal were on the agenda for his evening. Thank goodness he's much easier to please!

And now, it's April. Already. Supposedly, springtime is upon us, but with the damp, cool weather, I'm having a hard time being convinced of that. I'm sure I'll relish these days as the scorching summer weather blazes in soon enough.

Not only is it April, but it's Holy Week, too. I won't touch a whole lot on that, for fear of sounding too "preachy". But, I will say that, of all the times when I feel our Savior in my heart, this week is the time that I love and appreciate Him the most, especially when I remember what sacrifices he made to save us all from our sins.

Of course, Sunday is Easter. Not only is it a time for reverence and rebirth, but it's also a fun holiday for our kids. For years and years, we held out hope that our egg hunt could be had outside. But, with all of the years of rain (and even snow!), we've relinquished ourselves to having it indoors. The kids have just as much fun, and we do too, as we watch them darting from room to room, trying to find all of the eggs left for them by the Easter Bunny. They're especially thrilled when they find their "special" eggs...labeled with their names, and containing a grand surprise (usually a small amount of money, or a gift card to one of their favorite fast food joints). And then, the BIG squeals of delight, as their baskets are discovered. I have so much fun, picking out things for each of them, and stuffing their baskets chock full of their treasures.

I will also admit that, over the past two months, I've succumbed. I suppose I would now be officially labeled a "Twilighter". I've read all four books in the series, and have ordered a special edition DVD set from Borders. I've even ordered the soundtrack! :) I honestly didn't think I could possibly like a love story containing vampires and werewolves, but the books were written well enough that they were easy to glide through. I'm going to wait a few more weeks, then read them all over again!

I think that pretty much puts me up to speed, for now. All of you who've joined me on Facebook know what I've been up to on a daily basis, too. I only hope my next update doesn't take me just as long!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Part Two, of Quite Possibly the Longest Blog Post in History

Well, I don't know exactly what happened, but the Blogger wouldn't let me space through to another paragraph, so I sent what I'd written so far (so it didn't get lost), and figured I'd continue with a "part two".


I have to admit, her e-mail really rubbed me the wrong way. I mean, I know she doesn't know me from a hole in the wall, and who knows what was going through her head when her husband's ex-girlfriend dropped out of the sky and onto her webpage... but still... there was SOOOOOO much about her curt little response that just raised the hairs on the back of my neck.

It took all I had to shoot off a snotty little response, but I bit my tongue, walked away from the computer to cool off, and came back when I had a clearer head. I told her I can understand how he'd feel overhwhelmed, but he needs to know that there are plenty of people who, for one reason or another, felt bonded to him, and wanted to know how he was doing. And, because I have a "past" with him, I was more or less their "go to" person. I also said I could totally respect that he needed time, and that I'd be more than happy to give him all the time in the world.

(Okay, okay... just because I said it, didn't mean I necessarily was FEELING it, but I was trying so very hard to be my diplomatic, "I'll take the high road" kinda gal.)

It was after those series of e-mails, and the weeks that ensued, that I began to feel crushed. I was, after all, a pretty integral part of his past (we went out together for about a year and a half, and got pretty serious there for awhile), and I was nothing but good to him. Why on earth would he shun me the way that he was?

It took me a bit of time to process through the whole thing -- to talk to people whose opinions I valued, to help me work through all the different scenarios. And, it also took me gathering ALL of the courage I had, and then placing a call to his work number VERY early on a Saturday morning (and praying, the ENTIRE time, that he wouldn't pick up the phone!), so I could hear his voice. Once I got through all that, I found a peace within me. I determined that he had made his own little life for himself, that he'd gotten himself to a better place physically and emotionally, and that he was doing well. And, quite frankly, all I really wanted to know was that he was okay. And I got that from his voice on his answering machine. I can't explain how... but I did.

The weird thing is, the guy who prompted me to seek out this man in the first place has all but dropped off the face of the earth, too. He's all but disappeared off of Facebook, hardly ever responding to anyone's posts (and when he does, it's only with these short, almost bullet-type answers). He won't return my phone calls, and he barely responds to my e-mails, too. I'm wondering if this "old buddy" of his, doesn't want to rekindle THAT relationship, either???

Men! Sigh.

Anyway... back to my life at hand. The littlest little is gearing up for her 4th birthday, and I went yesterday to book HER party (at Chuck-E-Cheese's, per HER request... the little Diva!). She's given me her short list of invitees, and at the very top is her "boyfriend", Luis (whom, she's going to marry someday, dontchya know!). Every night, when I'm getting her clothes together for school the next morning, she tells me that she has to look "really pretty for her boyfriend"...!!!! Ugh!

Who knew that it would be my THREE-YEAR-OLD who'd be boy crazy first???

Besides, I'm saving her for one of either Natalie's boys. I'll let them fight over who winds up getting her. All I can say is... GOOD luck, once you decide! She's a REAL handful, that one! :)

It's Been Such A Long Time...

Now that I have the Boston tune stuck in my head.... :)

I sincerely apologize for not giving a blog update to all of my buds out there in cyberspace. I honestly do believe that someone hit the "fast forward" button right after Christmas, 'cause life's been a big blur after that!

We all survived the Christmas holiday quite nicely. The kids were very pleased with their gifts (as well they should have been!), and busied themselves pretty much the entire time off with their new gizmos and gadgets.

On the 26th of December, we celebrated my oldest daughter's 10th birthday with a homemade cake and ice cream, and even MORE presents for the birthday girl. For several years now, she's been saying how she can't wait until she turns 10, so she can have a laser tag party like her big brother had a few years back. The place I took him (Good Times) only allows kids over 10 to participate in their laser tag parties, and she was so looking forward to it. She was completely crushed when I came home one day, and told her the bad news -- I was at the shopping mall across the street from Good Times, and as I was exiting the back of the parking lot, I noticed that not only was Good Times shut down, but it was COMPLETELY gone (apparently, they closed because of poor revenue). From what I heard, they're putting an IKEA in its place. Good for me; BAD for her.

I promised her that I would do my very best to search out another place that has a laser tag party as one of its theme offerings. After some hefty Internet researching (you wouldn't believe how difficult it was to actually FIND a place close to home!), I discovered that the Kid's Playground offers such a thing. The only thing was, because they shut down the entire place, to allow party goers the run of the joint, they only offer these parties either before or after regular store hours.

So... I promised her that we'd schedule an "after-birthday lasertag bash" for her. I'm waiting for the income taxes to come in, and then I'm heading off to Kid's Playground to book it for her.

January brought snow. LOTS and LOTS of snow. I was housebound for what felt like almost the entire month (except for the taxi service to and from school, and the necessary trips to the grocery store to replenish sustenance). Why didn't I update then, you ask? Well..... because I had a situation occur that kind of put me in a funk. Not the same kind of funk I was in months before, mind you, but one that left me with a LOT of thinking and resolving to do.

As a member of Facebook, I've been thoroughly enjoying reconnecting with friends -- especially those from high school and college, whom I'd lost touch with YEARS ago. One of those "friends" is actually a former buddy of an ex-boyfriend of mine. He and I have really enjoyed getting to know each other (really, for the first time, since he was only a casual acquaintance back when I was dating his friend).

One day, he asked me if I'd help him try and find this friend of his/ex-boyfriend of mine. He lost touch with him a LONG time ago, and apparently, their last encounter wasn't such a pleasant one. He really missed the guy, and wanted to let him know that he never stopped being his friend. I agreed to help out, in any way I could, and plugged at it a chunk at a time, whenever I could spare a minute on the computer.

The trouble is, this guy's name is fairly common, and I kept going so far into a specific search, then hitting a brick wall when I found out it wasn't the right guy. I hit on a nugget of unfortunate information, when I stumbled across his dad's obituary, archived in one of our local newspapers. As sad as I was to read that his dad had passed, it was still really helpful, because it listed this guy and his (then) current location, which at least pointed me in the right direction.

The next day, I plugged in his name and the location, and *poof*... there was some concrete information, which could have been a clear indicator that I'd actually found him! The only thing that concerned me was, this guy I'd found was a real "techie" -- a career path that was so far removed from the guitar-playing, artistic boy I once knew. But hey, one never knows what can happen in 20+ years, so I gave it a shot, and sent this computer dude an e-mail. That, unfortunately, hit a bit of a dead end too, 'cause I never got a response back.

I did, however, find out what this guy's wife's name was, from the Internet results I obtained. On a whim, I decided to try out Facebook, and see if she might have a profile on there. When I plugged her name into the Friend Finder, and clicked "search", there appeared before me a black and white photo of a youngish-looking woman, flanked by three adorable little kids. Upon closer inspection of one of the boy rugrats in the picture, I could see, for sure that he was DEFINITELY a "mini me" of the boy I'd once dated.


I was giddy with excitement, not only because I'd found him, and could go back to his long-lost friend and give him the good news, but because, well.... I'd ACTUALLY DONE IT! I'd found him! (I was pretty impressed with myself, if I do say so myself! :)

I informed my new friend that I'd found the guy, and he, of course, was over the moon. He contacted the guy's wife, and wound up e-mailing the guy back and forth a few times. Before I knew it, my friend had sent me my ex-boyfriend's e-mail, encouraging me to contact him. I reminded him that he was one exceptional guy, and that most boys/men don't really want to rekindle a friendship with a former girlfriend. He insisted that this guy would love to hear from me, and that I shouldn't be ridiculous, and I should just go ahead and write to him.

It took me six attempts (deleting five in the process), to finally get up the courage to write. I kept my entry pretty benign, only relaying information about my life, and where it's taken me from then until now. I sent of the e-mail, and waited for a response.

And waited.

And waited.

And waited.

And.... got NOTHING. The "silence" was so deafening, that I dropped a note to wifey-poo (on Facebook), announcing myself, telling her I was an "old friend" of his, and would love it if he and I could reconnect, and if she and I might become friends, too.

It took all of thirty seconds for HER to e-mail me back. She told me that she doesn't normally add people to her friends' list that she doesn't know (this AFTER she added the guy who was looking for her husband -- uhm, okay!), and that her husband was "a very private person" who was "very overwhelmed" by the surge of people who were coming out of the woodwork to contact him all at once. She also said that she was leaving it completely up to him as to whether or not he wanted to contact me, and that I should give him time.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

I Know, I Know....

.... I'm LONG overdue for a blog posting! I do have lots to share with you guys, but I don't have the time (or my thoughts together enough) to do that right now. I just wanted to let you all know that I'm still alive and kickin'!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Celebrity Sightings (Per Karyn's Request)

As part of the last tag I participated in, one of the "random" things I listed about myself was that I've been fortunate enough to either meet, or spot, a LOT of celebrities in my lifetime. Some were totally by accident (when I was lucky enough to be at the right place at the right time), and some were arranged.

I've put an "S" next to the stars I've merely spotted, and a "M" next to those I've met, and had even a brief conversation with. If there are numbers next to the letters, it means I've either spotted or met them more than once (the number representing the number of times). I only hope I can remember them all! :)

Jimmy Osmond (M)
Jay Osmond (M3)
Merrill Osmond (M3)
Donny Osmond (M2)
Rex Smith (M)
The Go-Go's (M)
The Psychedelic Furs (M)
Joan Rivers (M)
Bette Midler (M)
Peter Wolf and Seth Justman (from J. Geils Band) (M)
Ric Ocasek (from The Cars) (M)
Laurie Bogart (Lauren Bacall and Humphry Bogart's daughter) (M)
Tina Turner (S)
Lauren Hutton (S)
Malcolm McClaren (former manager of The Sex Pistols) (S)
Natalie Portman (S)
Christopher Lloyd (S)
Christopher Reeve (S)
Vanessa Redgrave (S)
Paul Newman (M)
Sidney Poitier (M)
Lyndsay Crouse (M)
Patti Labelle (M)
Al Gore (M)
John Kerry (M)
Judith Hoag (went to high school with)
Patrick Ewing (went to high school with)
Jon Anastas (went to high school with)
Fran Tarkinton (M)
Roy Orbison (M)
Joe Perry, Tom Hamilton, Joey Kramer, Brad Whitford (all from Aerosmith) (M)
Brad Delp and Sib Hashian (both from Boston) (M)
Billy West (M)
Ken Howard (S)
Julia Child (S)
Diane Keaton (S)
Bill Walton (former Celtics player - S)
Danny Ainge (former Celtics player - S)
Robert Parish (former Celtics player - S)
Diane Lane (S)

That's all I can remember, for now (although I feel as if I've forgotten a few! :).

Why Do They Do This????

I don't know whether it's just me or not, but it seems that there are a LOT more movie previews on during the day, with less than appropriate material for little ones to watch.

Two cases in point:

1) The trailer for "Taken:


Just this trailer completely wigs my 10-year-old daughter out (especially the part where Liam Neeson's character tells his daughter, "They're going to take you, too." I mean come ON now.... who thinks that's okay for a young, impressionable girl to watch?? Especially one whose always had a HUGE hangup over the "things that go bump in the night", and with "monsters" under her bed! Yeah, she's sleeping REALLY well these days now, thanks!

2) Then there's this little dandy... the trailer for "The Unborn"


My kids are especially fond of the creepy guy whose head is on upside down. There's a special brand of terror that comes along with that guy that only a parent can truly understand!

Is it me, being a super-paranoid mom here, or have the networks gotten too callous? I've seen BOTH of these previews on in the middle of the afternoon, allowing both of my girls to witness them, implanting nasty little impressions on their budding brain cells.

Sure, I get that this certain genre of film has quite the following... of ADULTS. In my opinion, if a movie is rated PG-13 or R, meaning that kids under the age of 18 are not allowed to enter the theater to see this movie (either alone, or without a parent), then why the HECK are they showing the previews before prime time??

Help me out here, people, will ya? Help me to understand the logic... please?

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to go check for the Boogeyman underneath my daughter's bed.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Jett Travolta

I don't make it a habit to blog about celebrities, for one simple reason: I believe strongly that because they, too, are human beings (above all else), they deserve their right to privacy just like any other Average Joe. Maybe even moreso, because they're ALWAYS thrust in the public eye. So, "gossiping" about them just perpetuates the situation, giving them even LESS privacy than they deserve.

However, I really felt compelled to write something about the tragic passing of John Travolta and Kelly Preston's only son, Jett. Perhaps it's because I'm a mom, who like the Travolta's, has only one son. Perhaps it's because John Travolta seems to be one of the most humbled, down-to-earth, "normal" celebrities in show business today. Or, maybe it's because of the sheer enormity of the tragedy that a young man's life has ended, even before it had a fair chance of beginning.

Whatever the case may be for my compulsion, I had to put my feelings out there. To make my thoughts public.

Because, really, when it comes right down to it, whatever profession one chooses in life, and however one brings home their paycheck at the end of the week, the most gratifying job there is is to be a child's parent. Sure, it can be quite the daunting task at times, but, when you do the "work" right, it can also be an amazing, wonderful thing, to watch those tiny little creatures unfold and blossom into adulthood, and to know that you've played a big part in molding them to deal with whatever successes or challenges come their way in life.

John Travolta and Kelly Preston were shining examples of parenting done "right". Because of their celebrity (and therefore, their affluence), they could have easily decided to let the nannies and governesses rear their children, while they flitted about with their heads in the clouds. Instead, though, they made the conscious effort to keep their feet firmly planted on the ground, and remain an integral part of their children's lives.

So, although I completely understand that no parent in their sound mind would ever wish their child hurt (or worse), I must say that my heart is aching for John and Kelly, not only because they lost their only son, whom they quite obviously adored, but also because of the fact that they are celebrities, and cannot and will not be left alone to grieve in private.

I only pray that they find the strength in each other in order to make their way through this tragedy together, and that they know and understand that, as long as they carry that beautiful young man in their hearts, they'll have him with them forever.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

The Seven Things I Like About You (a.k.a. Taggie-poo!)

So, my dear blogger bud Erica tagged me, as a way to "start off the New Year right". Being the dutiful blogger friend that I am, I am more than happy to oblige! :)

I will say, though, that my list of seven things about me pales by comparison to hers!

Here goes:

1. I was the lead in two musicals during my Senior year in high school, and aspired, for awhile, to be an actor. (Shhhh...sometimes I still think about performing, and might just get up the courage to join a community theater someday!)

2. I've seen "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" over 150 times -- every Friday and Saturday night, in the theater, NOT on video.

3. I've met a ridiculous amount of celebrities in my lifetime -- mostly purely by coincidence.

4. I hope to take art classes someday, and plan to when my little one gets a bit older.

5. I didn't get my driver's license until I was 41 years old (and yes, this is one of my biggest regrets... that I waited so long to drive).

6. I'm very intuitive. Sometimes I like it, and sometimes, I really don't.

7. My husband and I were introduced by my soon-to-be ex-husband.

Rules: link back to who tagged you (I can't, for the life of me, figure out how to do that linky thing, but I'm sure Erica will pop in, at some point), and tag 7 people (I'm not going to arbitrarily pick seven folks. I hope you'll all participate, and let me know if you do). Let them know they've been tagged (Okay... you're ALL tagged! :P).

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Out With The Old, And In With The New

I don't know about you guys, but to me, 2008 went by incredibly fast. And, as challenging as it was, quite frankly, I'm glad to see it gone. I always feel so hopeful on the first day of a new year. It's like everything's all squeaky clean. I've been given a massive "do over". And, I fully intend to do what I can to make the best of it.

I'm not much of a resolution maker, but I guess you could say that's mine. To do the best I can. To try and move forward, and to work to my best potential to make things better. That promise may sound trivial to some, but believe me, that simple statement carries a LOT of weight behind it. I only hope I can strive to make good on that vow.

If you, yourself, make resolutions, I hope that, whatever they are, you'll work to YOUR best potential to make them come true. And, try not to beat yourself up about it if they don't come to fruition. Remember...there's always next year! :)

Happy New Year, everyone!