February 28, 2010

Diets, Math, Driving, and I'm Cold

My house is cold and I refuse to turn on the heat. Florida homes do not have efficient heating systems and my last bill during that crazy one week cold snap was nearly $400. We are electric only and the house, even for that insane amount, was never warm. And for reference, this month it was $138. We're a full electric house... no gas at all.

So no heat and I don't give a crap how much they bitch, we live in SFL and it will eventually warm up. They need to just suck it up.

I am warmest in my dead muppet slippers, but have found myself quietly going into the kitchen, turning on the eye of the stove, warming my hands, and then moving on to do whatever else I have to do next.

Good Grief. I'm pathetic.

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One of the kids I'm tutoring in Algebra II is in public school and coming up is their big FCAT test. The FCAT is the standardized testing required to get promoted from grade to grade (in some cases) and for sure is required to graduate from high school. One of the reasons I want Bones in public schools for middle school, is I'm unsure he can pass the FCAT for high school. I'm not convinced he's reading or writing on grade level.

My student's Mom wanted to retain me even through this FCAT period just to keep her focused. I feel bad about it as I suspected it was a waste of money and I don't want to waste someone's money. If I don't connect with the kid, I'm not helping, they are doing something they don't need me for... I don't need to be there.

However, I get it and I was upfront and so if the Mom, who is a friend of mine, is cool, then I'm still game. They're a good good family.

I sat down today with my student, just to see what kind of stuff would be on the test and I have NO CLUE why I've been worried about Bones passing this test. It is 5th through 7th grade math. Simple fractions, decimals, adding money, percentages... Good Grief.

I was stunned.

My student is going to nail it. We kept looking at each other and laughing as she went through page after page taking less than 11 seconds to answer each question... correctly. Pathetic.

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We're nearing the end of my body science experiment with diet. I'll post on it Thursday probably... the final outcome of weight loss and what I've seen.

It has been infinitely harder to eat as is suggested for a healthy heart, by week 4. I have had a hard time not eating junk and have had to tell myself, "One more week."

But... I know parts of this are going to be permanent. It's going to be a pick and choose. If I have a function to go to and I know they are going to serve a crazy great dessert, I'm going to splurge, but the rest of the week be incredibly strict.

My son wants twice baked potatoes for his birthday dinner on Wednesday, and I'll have a half of one (half of a half) with the realization I will probably get sick, but I've been craving it and I knew I'd be at the end of the experiment by then. It just means the rest of the week I'll be insanely careful.

It's been interesting.

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This is video of one of the kids we saw present at the award ceremony last night, highlighting Arts for the youth in our community.

I do love how he plays, but I love when they ask him if he wants to be a professional violinist and his response. If it doesn't work out, he thought about maybe being an astronaut. I loved that.

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My son will be getting his learner's permit in the next couple weeks.

I blinked.

He grew.

I'm aghast.

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On an odd note... I keep meeting more and more parents who say, "OH! I was in that line for Ozzy Osboune's signature with my kid too!" Whodathunk?

Posted by Boudicca at 10:52 PM | Comments (6)

Children With Color

My husband and I are finding ourselves more and more active in the local art scene. From theater to dance to singing to instrumental, somehow we find ourselves at events that spotlight what our local young talent has in Palm Beach County.

The odd thing is... that in all the years we've lived her, we have never been thrust into these settings, not for the Arts, and now this year, out of the blue, we have.

We end up at big fundraisers for local theaters or award ceremonies for folks who have done a tremendous amount of work keeping the Arts in our schools when Art is being cut or providing artistic experiences for kids in neighborhoods that would not normally have the opportunity to learn things like modern dance, ballet, and voice.

We find ourselves in awe of the commitment of the teachers drawn into wanting to teach and motivate and educate children from all walks of life... from the heart. We are in awe of people who have, as I like to say, 'More Money than God', who have developed a passion for helping the Arts stay alive, when it seems so many want to kill it or at least do not see any significance. We are in awe of the children we perpetually meet who are so very... talented.

Hearing a 16 year old sing Opera, Soprano, you are moved.

Seeing young children from indigent communities dance and they are so spectacular, you want to cry.

Listening to middle school kids play instruments in such a way that you pray they always keep music in their lives.

And you wonder how people could not want to support the Arts. A civilization without Art is not civilized.

It just is.

And I am realizing the irony that we have come to realize that we have a child not like the others. We have a child that just doesn't 'fit'. We have a child that has already worn out his teacher and there are still 3 months to go in the school year. And as we realize it and try to do something about it, we continually find ourselves in situations where we meet children like him.

Children with artistic minds, that see the world through an amazingly colorful prism, where things are not linear, but light is shooting off in different directions in different colors.

I am wondering where this road is taking us... I am bracing myself... for as frought with frustration as it is... I suspect it's going to be fun.

And rewarding.

Stay tuned...

Posted by Boudicca at 12:02 AM | Comments (3)

February 26, 2010

So What Did YOU Do Tonight?

I waited in my husband's car for three hours while he took my second son to wait in line to get a book signed by Ozzy Osbourne.

It was a lot nicer than it sounds...

We heard yesterday Ozzy was coming into town. I'm not a big fan. I prefer the folks I want to meet to be... more drug free. Well, with the exception of Michael Phelps. He can do any drugs he wants and I would still be cool meeting him.

Anyway.

For some reason Mr. T evidently wanted to go to this book signing. Next thing I knew, I was sitting in my bedroom, on the phone with a girlfriend trying to get the seating organized for this fashion show I do every year, and my husband has come in with T and they're going through all my husband's old vinyl.

Out came an album that said Black Sabbath. There stood my husband with a big grin on his face.

Out came ANOTHER worn album that said Black Sabbath. There stood my husband grinning at me even... bigger.

And then he had about four or five albums. I'm lost. I just smiled back, gave him a big two thumbs up and he and T took off.

I got off the phone and my husband had the record player out, showing T how to use it and was about to play his albums when I said, "Wait. Did Ozzy Osborne SING for Black Sabbath?"

Said my husband: *blank stare* *Long pause* yes.

There you are.

I didn't listen to that type of music, but as my husband put it, magnifying our five year age difference, when he was in high school Ozzy sang with Black Sabbath. When *I* was in high school, he was solo. According to my husband, that was 1981 and I'm not looking it up because when it comes to Black Sabbath, Pink Floyd (in particular Pink Floyd), and The Who... my husband knows it all.

Evidently we did not hang out with the same kind of kids either, in high school, but we won't go there in this post.

And then I hear them talking and I hear "blah blah blah, booksigning, blah blah blah, dinner, blah blah blah, waiting in line..." and I gathered my plans for the evening were being made.

I'm all about the life experience, preferably very positive, and because of odd circumstances we only at Mr. T with us for the evening, and I said, "Sure, what the hell, why not? I think y'all are nuts; there are going to be scads of people, but if it makes you happy, I'll go."

So we grabbed dinner, and I dropped them off as there was NO PARKING to be found within a half mile of B&N, and then I found a spot, parked the car and read, and sat, and spoke on the phone and worked puzzles in my puzzle book and... relaxed. Nobody wanted anything from me, needed anything from me, there were no shouts of "Mom! Mom! Mom!", nobody pulling on me, poking me, whining at me... it was just me. In my husband's car. Warm. And... quiet.

I had no intention of waiting in line in the cold or in a crowded store and was perfectly content to let this be a father/son expedition.

It was nearly three hours. I can run a half marathon in less time. In my past life...

Anyway, so they had a great time the two of them. Some guy standing with the looked at T and said, 'One day, you're going to look back and remember the time that you stood in line all night with your Dad... and you got Ozzy Osbourne's autograph.'

Mr. T kind of thinks that's cool. I'm laughing as there was my 2nd son, Mr. "Have to get an A in very class or he's dang near despondent" clean cut, with his "Property of Alcatraz Swim Team" hoody, that was my 'sweat shirt' in college, amongst all the emo crowd waiting for Ozzy's book to be signed, a book my husband said he can't read until he's 18. Right.

And here's a picture... for proof. He doesn't look near as dirtbaggy as I expected. Actually... he doesn't look dirtbaggy at all. He cleans up good.

Booksigning.jpg


Posted by Boudicca at 11:03 PM | Comments (14)

February 23, 2010

There is no Limit to Bones

Bones bounced in for me to kiss him goodnight. Tonight's underwear of choice is black boxers with skulls wearing Santa hats.

I think his myriad choices of crazy underwear kind of mirrors his personality.

Yes, he has matching shoes for his underwear, little skull and cross bone Vans. I don't think he's realized yet he could wear them as slippers and have that whole matchy matchy skull thing going like he does with his camo underwear and camo slippers.

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We've hit a real low again today in the childrearing department, something I won't go into except to say that I think often that parenting is one of the most stressful jobs out there. The constant worry about the present and the future.

Feeling like you're adrift on a broken down inner tube life raft in the ocean.... full of sharks.

But hey, maybe it's just me that feels that way.

Maybe everyone else thinks it's a cakewalk.

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My weight loss has tapered off to what I think will be .5 to 1 pound a week which I think is as it should be. Much more than that and I get nervous.

My ankles are smaller. How weird is that?

I also know now for sure that my Rosacea is NOT diet inflicted and now I feel the need to do something about it. Before I thought my diet was doing it and so I didn't care. I thought if I didn't have the self control to change my diet, I would deal with my face.

Now I realize that I have no control and I hate that. I look like I have the measles. So I had my doctor call in a script for a gel for my face. If that can tame it... great. Otherwise, I may go back on oral meds.

I need to do more research.

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My sister is coming in town tomorrow on business. We miss the schmoopy and have asked Mo to bring her; I'd take off and babysit, but it's still too much of a hassle.

We're all excited to see her though. Bones is Bones and is already 1000 questions.

It's always nice to have family visit.

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BTW, I happen to *know* someone in the movie Valentine's Day *cough*. I need to see it. He doesn't have a speaking part, he plays the Valet at an Indian Restaurant, but he's in a big time movie!

Woot!

Posted by Boudicca at 10:36 PM | Comments (11)

February 21, 2010

Of Cakes and Creatures

Our previous Cub Scout troop had their crossing over into our current Boy Scout troop today. During the ceremony, they awarded the Arrow of Light, something Webelos strive for and the only badge they can wear on their Boy Scout uniform from Cub Scouts.

And so my girlfriend who was the Den Leader, went to Publix and asked for a cake. She told them she wanted it to say the following:
"Congratulations to Bobby, Tommy, Johnny, Sam, Mark, and Luke in attaining your Arrow of Light!"

And she gave them directions that said, "If Arrow of Light is too long, don't put Arrow of Light. Please put AOL."

And her husband picked up the cake and when she got home she opened the box and the cake said,

Congratulations to Bobby, Tommy, Johnny, Sam, Mark and Luke in attaining your Arrow of Light!
(If Arrow of Light is too long, don't put Arrow of Light. Please put AOL.)

No kidding. They wrote the directions for the cake on the cake itself.

We were astounded... and could not quit laughing.

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Son#4 is taking Honors Biology at the same school Ringo is attending. Ringo is in regular Bio as you have to take Honors Geometry to be in Honors Bio and I refused to put him in Honors Geom since the boy had never studied in his life.

Anyway, so keep in mind... these boys are FRESHMEN. They are both in sophomore bio, Son#4 in Honors, but they are in HIGH SCHOOL.

This was Son#4's project and I'm going to get some of this wrong, so read into it if you can.

The class was divided into groups of three. Each group was given a single strand of DNA with 1000 nucleotides for some unknown 'creature'. From their 'Strand A', they were to figure out what the matching 'Strand B' looked like and then they were to figure out the MRNA and the TRNA for each Strand.

From there, they were to get the amino acids and group them in groups of three, where she gave them charts and they could figure out what traits their creature had, then they were to build the creature.

They chose a habitat randomly and were to then create a shoeobox type structure of what the habitat would look like and then write a paper on the survivability of said creature and what it would do there.

His creature ended up standing on two legs (like a standing bear), it had longish arms, two colors of brown fur on his back, head, and outside of his legs, a pink skin colored tummy (underside), a short tail, a snout with a horn (like a rhino), brown eyes, two big teeth (think rabbit), and floppy ears (like a dog).

I'm sorry... but how frickin' cool is THAT for a project? Good grief. Talk about really understanding DNA!!!

I couldn't wait for him to finish so I could hear what it was like and pass it on to my Dad, who also thought it was a cool as crap project. Son#4 came over today and he showed me pictures of his creature he'd taken on his cell phone for me.

Dang.

If that doesn't trump any Bio class I've ever heard of for High School, I don't know what else does...

Posted by Boudicca at 09:44 PM | Comments (10)

February 20, 2010

Tips for Today

Don't eat a fried egg before you go to a funeral. Enough said.
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NY Strip ground up makes very dry hamburgers. Don't do it.

(I was reading about how we don't have really good oversight of our ground beef industry and that maybe it's best to grind your own. So I bought the food grinding part to go with my Kitchen Aid (still my favorite Christmas gift from my husband... EVER!) and looked for beef on sale. I found NY Strip on sale and bought them for try out, much to the dismay of my father who said essentially, "NOOO!!!! Chuck Roast on sale!" Point taken.)

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Funniest weirdest scene ever at dinner: Mr. T was eating his very dry hamburger. We were choking them down when he leaned over close to his plate. He picked his head up and my husband and I said simultaneously, "What in the heck happened?" to which he replied, "I needed more ketchup!"

Hamburger in mouth, chewing, dry meat, he leaned over his plate and licked the ketchup. It may not sound funny in writing, but you had to see it.

I can't quit laughing.

So there is a tip in there somewhere for you...
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I'm at a loss how those of you in the Great White North make it without wearing shorts for 6 to 9 months out of the year. It's been about three weeks since our 'cold snap' and I really want to wear shorts. And be barefoot.

Even though I have come to love my Dead Muppet Slippers.

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I guess that's it.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:50 PM | Comments (17)

February 19, 2010

Would You Like Cheese with That?

It's kind of crazy here, lots of work, madness with the kiddies, and life.

In 8 years I won't have children in my home. That phase of my life will be over, and I have been wondering lately... what will it be like?

Last night we found the boys didn't have Scouts, everyone was caught up on homework and... I looked at my husband during dinner and said, "Let's go see a movie!" Just the two of us. We don't need sitters anymore and everyone can get themselves packed up for the morning and into bed.

Love that.

So we saw "It's Complicated" and laughed ourselves silly in parts.

As for this crazy path I took in changing my life, I'm still having residual effects I never expected.

I am down below my marathon weight now, down 7 lbs.

But the big thing is I absolutely NEVER have sugar highs and lows. I just get hungry, but there is no scrambling for food. I literally have no cravings for sugar.

But I recently craved cheese and nearly killed for it, which is ironic as this is what Ringo had predicted. When he found out about my experiment the following conversation ensued:

Ringo: What? You're taking all that out of your diet? That includes... cheese?

Me: Yup.

Ringo: You are going to make us so miserable.

Me: No, I'm not!

Ringo: You're going to become a monster!

Me: *gasp* No I'm not!

Ringo: Yes, you are going to get nasty about cheese. I'm going to ask to go to the mall, OK? And you're going to say, "NO!!! You can't go to the mall because I can't eat CHEESE!"

Me: It's not true!

Ringo: Yes. You watch.

And it hasn't, except for the other night the kids asked for breakfast for dinner as their Dad had a meeting. I had a half dozen eggs ready to be scrambled when Bones shouted, "And Mom! Can we have cheese eggs?"

I broke out the cheddar cheese, unwrapped it, got the grater out and... had to fight this overwhelming urge to just take a huge bite out of the middle of the brick.

I almost went insane for cheese.

I just didn't take it out on the kids.

And everyone thought it would be the chocolate that got the best of me... but Ringo knew... it would be the cheese!

Posted by Boudicca at 10:18 PM | Comments (4)

February 16, 2010

A Half a Century Ago...

My husband turned 50 today! Whoo hooo! I've been planning his birthday dinner for a couple weeks now. I took a half day off of work, and came home to prepare.

I set the dining room table with our fine china. I went to the local fish and meat markets and bought fresh lobster tails and filet. I stuffed the lobster tails, which was experimental and I used way too many shallots, but nobody complained becaus lobster is lobster afterall and we don't get that too often here.

I made his requested cake of chocolate with chocolate chips with chocolate icing. (Nope, I not only didn't have one piece, but it didn't bug me in the least. I was fine without it.)

And I had a special gift for him... I got him 8 laps around the Daytona Speedway in a NASCAR type racing car. He's very excited!

Last night we were in bed. I looked over and said to him, "Wow. Tomorrow night I'm going to be sleeping with a 50 year old man. HOW.IN.THE.HELL.DID.THAT.HAPPEN?"

He just kind of laughed.

But really. How in the hell did that happen?

Happy Birthday, Hunhead!

Posted by Boudicca at 10:53 PM | Comments (19)

February 15, 2010

Really... Who in the Hell ARE You?

Ringo informed me today he wants to take up boxing.

Great.

I told him to bring his grades up each a letter grade and we'll talk. I want a solid A/B average. Right now he always has just ONE C. All A's and B's and we'll talk.

Boxing.

WTF?

This house is so laden with testerone, I'm frickin' DROWNING. I'm expecting hair to just start sprouting out of my chest just from living with all of this in my home.

Boxing.

And I know a GREAT ENT, but do I want to call him in my future and say, "Can you fix my son's nose? He broke it boxing..." ?

NO.

Good Lord.

Is this hereditary, this interest in beating the ever living crap out of people?

TGOO Navy0002.JPG
TGOO, Plebe Year at the Naval Academy

Meanwhile, we were at double bass lessons tonight when he looked at the instructor and said, "Can you teach me Pachelbel's Canon in D major?"

Evidently he wants to learn to eventually play this (the bass section), but he'd like to try the original first on his double bass:

Is this really the same kid?


Posted by Boudicca at 09:50 PM | Comments (11)

February 14, 2010

Valentine's Day... The Big Picture

I completely forgot today was Valentine's Day, it not being a real holiday in my book. My boys, however, will never forget and so while they were at church, I ran errands and bought all four of them a chocolate flower and chocolate covered oreos.

They were happy.

And of course, they gave me funny cards, my husband bought me flowers, and the boys added a charm to my bracelet. Chocolate was out since I'm not taking in refined sugar. I liked the cards, flowers, and charms infinitely better.

I don't know if y'all saw this, but there is a farmer in Minnesota that is now famous for the Valentine he made his wife of 37 years.

cool heart.jpg
This picture was taken by Darren Schone of Minnesota Aviation.

For those who don't know the story on this, it's a 1.5 acre manure heart that he planned out on paper and then created with tractor and time. You can read more about it HERE. (She raises a type of cattle, which is where all the poop was obtained.)

Now people have different takes on this, but I personally thought it was cool as sh**, pun intended.

What a riot and to me, it made me think about their relationship of 37 years and how wonderful they are together. I've told people about this story since I read it first a few years ago and quite a few were saying, "EW! Gross!"

But I don't think of it that way at all. This guy put some serious THOUGHT into it... thinking of something unique with his empty field. To a farmer, manure is just another something you have around the property. To most that I know that have said, "EW! Gross!" I suspect they'd think the entire farming thing in general was that way.

To me, I just think it was absolutely great. That one was the classic of all time... and from what I understand, he had an aviation company go up and take a picture for her.

That man thought the whole thing through.

And that's just... cool.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:50 PM | Comments (7)

February 13, 2010

Paring Down...

My father in law has decided to move to a smaller apartment at his facility to save $1000 a month.

In reality, what he had was too big. (More on that...)

When he makes up his mind, he's a real jerk about it. There is no changing him no matter how disastrous the decision may be, and trust me, there have been many, although this one is a GREAT decision.

He's the King of bitching too, so we're expecting this not to go smoothly. My husband is spending his time at the new apartment trying to think of all the things that can possibly go wrong, because, trust me again, we WILL hear about it if it does.

My husband noticed that this new apartment is RIGHT NEXT TO the dining facility. His first thought, "Crap, he's going to hate all the people coming and going right outside his place, the food is right there..."

And then Pop interrupted him mid-thought and said, "And the best part is, the Dining area is RIGHT HERE! I can just walk right out of my room and eat!"

*blink* Taken back my husband thought, "Ok then!"

So it's good. Except it's going to be a lot of work for us, and it's not as if we have all that much time anyway.

But, it got me to thinking. I read an article in our paper one day written by a woman who had just moved her Mom into a Nursing home. It was kind of written about her Mom's "stuff". That from a full fledged home in her heyday, she now had only one knitted pillow on her bed that came from all those years.

Everything else was not needed... and was gone... and she went through it step by step through the years.

Ten years ago, Pop lived in a house on the water, three bedrooms, two bath, full garage, formal living and dining, family room and eat in kitchen.

Six months later he had a fit, saying he couldn't live there without Ma, and he moved into a two bedroom, two bath, with a full garage, kitchen, and combined dining area/living area. Out went all the dining room furniture, half the kitchen, both bedrooms (he bought a convertible couch/bed) and the family room furniture. We gave it all away as my mother in law and father in law were members of the 'It's perfectly good!" club and so their 1960s plastic covered furniture with the orange floral bedspreads and what not, found new homes. (Furniture... think My Big Fat Greek Wedding. My mil owned all that furniture.)

Last year, having fallen so much and tired of calling 911, we moved him into an assisted living facility that was one bedroom, one closet, a small combined living/eating area, a kitchen and two bathrooms. Out went the formal living room, and this time we had to go through things like my mother in law's china. His garage tools ended up in OUR garage.

It is easier to say what was left: bed, dresser, side table, computer desk, couch/sleeper, recliner, corner hutch, TV and TV stand, table and chairs and lots of cooking stuff in the kitchen.

He's moving again and now will have one big room with a foyer area. Gone are the kitchen, bedroom, and extra bath (always a waste).

We're getting rid of the TV and stand (he's getting a flat screen to hang on the wall to save space), kitchen table and chairs, ALL that's left in the kitchen. We're trying to save the corner hutch... but that may have to go. We'll see.

And so when the time comes to go through his things, there really won't be much to go through. It's been an ongoing process. I suspect eventually all he'll have left is an afghan and his horrid bedspread.

It's kind of sad... but he's really OK with it. He really is.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:26 PM | Comments (1)

February 11, 2010

Watching Casper Grow

When I was in high school, there was a kid in my class that was extremely extroverted and would do anything.

Our Senior year right before Christmas break, he came to school dressed as Santa Claus. I have no idea from where he rented the costume, but all day, he was dressed as Santa. Someone told me he did the same at Easter dressed as a bunny, but I don't remember that one.

Every year, the Senior class would stand on the football field and some company would get up high in the stands and with some fancy technology of the times (this was the early 80s) would take some 'slo mo' photo so it could capture all of us. But... there were rules.

Rules of course put out by the administration too, nobody could dress weirdly, and... you couldn't wear one solid color. I'm not sure if it was because it would blur everyone with the 'high tech' of the time or if it was the admin rule so that our Senior class would not go down in posterity with a big 'red' smudge in the middle of the picture, if red was the color of choice.

Of course that didn't stop the clowns in my class. If you look closely at the picture, some of the Senior boys sneaked in a manequin or blow up doll. I think she's a manequin... I need to check.

Anyway, the very same extroverted boy in our class decided to test the limits and showed up on picture day, dressed all in white and with his arms, hands and face painted white as well.

Holding true to their threat, he wasn't allowed in the picture, instead having to wait in the stands while the picture was taken, whilst the entire Senior class chanted, "Cas-per! Cas-per! Cas-per!"

The admin didn't back down. He's not there. The blow up doll/mannequin, however,... is.

These stories sometimes come up in our family, about this kid in my high school class. He was a riot to all of us. There was always something he'd do, dress up, clown around, there was nothing shy about him.

And I always wondered what it must be like to be like that.

And then I had Bones... who is so on that path. I see it coming like a frickin' train.

At dinner tonight he told us he got a tally in class. A tally is like a demerit. Four tallies and you get a detention, and while Bones is not the Detention King, he may be a not so distant 2nd. Talking all the time and not following directions are his biggest offenses. (Surprise!)

Having missed so much school last week, he didn't have to take all his tests. Today's test was in Social Studies, so he was asked to wait in the hall while the class took the test.

Each door has a window about average adult's face height (I have to stand on my tip toes) so the teacher can look out into the hallway.

According to Bones, he stood next to the door and then raised his two hands to window height (the window is a good 6-8 inches above his head) and then pretended one of them was a rock while the other was a bunny and the bunny hopped over to the rock (akin to Little Bunny Foo Foo... remember that?) where the rock then raised up and ate the bunny.

While the kids were taking their test.

We sat there speechless at the table, the four of us staring at him. My husband was pissed. I was thinking, "NO. HE.DID.NOT."

Breaking the silence, very matter of factly, poking his fork into the air to punctuate his words he said, "Evidently I distracted some kids from their test. I got a tally..."

Evidently?

Good Lord. I thought my husband was going to blow a small gasket. Ringo and T were laughing so hard I thought they'd wet themselves and the entire time I sat there staring at him thinking, "I frickin' gave birth to the class of 2017's Casper. No kidding."

Posted by Boudicca at 10:27 PM | Comments (9)

February 10, 2010

HB, MO!

I played phone tag with my sister today. I got home from my Board Meeting to her calling only to have me answer with a "Can I call you back in 10?"

Ten turned into an hour as I scarfed down dinner, baked 24 cupcakes for a Valentine's Day party, helped my son study for his Trig test, helped my other son study for his Middle Eastern country test (he has to be able to identify and locate every Middle Eastern country), iced 24 cupcakes and then thought, "Oh crap! I didn't call Mo back!"

I wanted to talk to her because... today is her 39th birthday.

Next year she'll be the big FOUR OH!

I said to her, "Dang, next year you're going to be 40. It's going to suck worse to be Mom and Dad because all of their children will officially be in their 40s."

She replied, "I know. I pointed that out to them and Dad said, "Hell, I'm going to be 70!""

We laughed.

So to my younger sister, who is on the cusp of being 40, I say, "HAPPY BIRTHDAY!"

And for the record, it sucked to bake those 24 cupcakes and frost them with that canned chocolate frosting.

It sucked big.

I suspect the last 3 weeks are going to be harder than the first week. However, I want to see this through and see what other changes happen by eliminating all the junk from my diet.

Those chocolate iced cupcakes look really really yummy...

Posted by Boudicca at 11:04 PM | Comments (4)

February 09, 2010

Day 7 on this Crazy Train

This evening is the end of day 7 of this crazy path I decided to take of 30 days without processed foods, white flour, refined sugar and potatoes. I was going to hit the highs and lows tomorrow, but thought I'd do it tonight as tomorrow I probably won't have time due to a Board Meeting I have to attend.

I find it odd? absurd? ironic? insane? That after I started down this heart healthy path, Bones has decided to become a corned beef hash addict. Introduced to this food by TGOO, for the last two days, it's all the kid wants to eat.

Breakfast? Scrambled egg with cheese and side of corned beef hash.
Snack after school? Nearly an entire can of corned beef hash... which he cooks up himself out of the can.

I think my heart is starting to solidify just thinking about it.

The "I Misses":

I still think about going to Mo's and eating a bowl of queso with a boatload of chips with my boys, but I realize this is psychological and it's stuck there from last week. I'm going to do it at the end of my 30 days, but probably in moderation.

I miss popping a mint in my mouth or eating piece of gum. That is probably the single biggest habit I had that has surprised me. I am constantly scrounging for a mint or grabbing for a piece of gum... all of it off limits.

And that's it. As of Day 7, that's all I miss.

Now for... The Highs:

1) I'm not having any cravings (other than a bowl of queso from Mo's). At all. I'm not sure whether this is psychological too because I already knew I was going to do this and so why bother craving something if you're not going to give in? Kind of like a whining child... eventually they'll quit whining (unless the child is Bones) if you just stick to your guns. So I'm not sure if it's biological or psychological... but I'm having NO cravings.

People don't listen. My boss handed me a bag of M&Ms today, tossed them on my desk. Everyone KNOWS that I'm doing this. Trust me... I've not been silent.

And I didn't blink or think twice. They just sat there like my stapler. So I handed them back. His reply? "You're NOT eating chocolate... AT ALL?"

Everyone in the office seemed taken back.

Whatever.

2) I don't have the 2:00 draggies, or rather the last couple days I have not. I recently read that if you eat oatmeal for breakfast you won't have the munchies in the afternoon. Hmmm.

But I'm definitely not on the high low rollercoaster that I'm typically on throughout the day.

3) My rosacea is going away. What I have is clearing up and I've not had any type of break out in a week, which is exceedingly unusual for me.

4) I'm sleeping better. I'm now wondering if the sugars in our diets keep us up later than we should be? I'm not only sleeping better, but I'm tired earlier. It's like my body is saying, "Energy is gone" and since I'm not eating sugar, nor am I craving it for energy, my body seems to want to sleep more.

I slept for 5 straight hours last night. The last time I did that I was on heavy drugs after surgery.

5) And lastly, I don't seem to be fighting my digestive system. The heartburn I had since I ate that half sleeve of frozen Girl Scout thin mint cookies, three weeks ago, is gone. I'm not sick anymore and I realize now I really am lactose intolerant and need to watch that lactose intake.

I have grown to like steel cut oats and it's my new breakfast... so many damn benefits.

6) And really, the truly last thing is I've lost 3.5 pounds which is unheard of for me. Typically I have to exercise huge quantities (think run 5 miles a day) and that's not happening and the weight is coming off faster.

I do expect the weight loss to plateau to an even 1-2 lbs a week if it's going to keep up, starting this week, but the 3.5 was shocking to me since I'm not that far from goal weight anyway. Y'all have seen me. I'm not a big person.

I think a good portion of this is water as well, however, since I'm not taking in so much sodium.

Lessons Learned? I f*cking hate baked sweet potatoes with a purple passion. Steel Cut Oats with blueberries and bananas is very good. It is possible to live without chocolate. And according to Dr. Oz's book, too little sleep or too little sex will make you crave sugar. Hunh. I told my husband this and he raised an eyebrow at me and grinned.

Interesting.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:17 PM | Comments (8)

February 07, 2010

Brain Fog

Bones is still trying to cough up a lung.

Ringo if fighting something.

Mr. T's cough is still bronchial.

And tonight every single kid had math homework they didn't understand, with a test tomorrow.

So tonight I taught Trig, Pre-Alg, and 5th grade math (lowest common multiples and greatest common factors) and I swear to you, my brain is now stretched thin and the LCMs and GCFs were the toughest of it all as I was trying to figure out what I did in 5th grade.

Scarier yet, I remember exactly when I learned LCMs and GCFs, who my teacher was, and where I sat in the classroom.

And without looking at his book, I was able to teach it to him based on what I remember on the chalkboard from 35 years ago.

But I can't remember where I parked my damn mini-van.

Go figure.

On a food note, it's going GREAT and my biggest problem will be when my husband cooks. When my husband offers to cook, I 1) never say no and 2) never say "I won't eat that" and 3) am never picky.

So I'm having to tread carefully. I am so grateful for Mondays, his cooking day, that I don't ever want to act like I'm not.

Fortunately, he cooked from scratch beef with broccoli and it was all things I'll eat and it was good. But I do suspect Mondays will be my biggest... diplomatic obstacle.

Posted by Boudicca at 11:07 PM | Comments (4)

February 06, 2010

Song of the South

Based on what Bones told me and how he's been practicing, I feel certain he passed the audition. Now he goes into what they call 'the lottery'. First step is passing the audition, second step is getting your name pulled.

I have no control over this part.

We find out in April...

Posted by Boudicca at 08:09 PM | Comments (8)

Please Sir, May I have Some More?

*This was written after breakfast before all my comments on my new breakfast*

My one regret I have that I did not do before embarking on this new eating adventure, other than not eating at Mo's one more time, was that I didn't have my Doc check my cholesterol recently. I'd like to know how many points it drops by eating like this.

I'm still making an appointment for after it's done to see what it is... as I know the number from two years ago.

About Steel Cut Oats... when you open the can, it looks like hamster food. I'm not kidding. I opened it and thought, "No. I'm going to eat this?"

I don't know what I was expecting either. I think I was expecting twigs.

Anyway the recipe called for boiling it for a minute, leaving it with the lid on overnight and then, reboiling it the next morning for 10 minutes.

Except there is no reboiling. All the hamster food absorbed all the water. In essence, it's a 10 minute reheat.

Except I turned the stove on and then ran to do something, to come back to find Steel Cut Oats and the bottom of my pan had become... ONE.

It was time to serve it up. Looking in the pan it appeared to be brown rice. I quit eating white rice voluntarily about 18 years ago. I buy brown rice boil in a bag, which is probably not much better for you than white rice... it's probably just white rice with a tan.

Anyway, this was the consistency. It was brown rice boil in a bag texture, leaving me with the question:

Fork or Spoon?

I eat my brown rice with a fork, but I pretty much remember Oliver eating his porridge with a spoon. I opted for the spoon.

And I covered it in blueberries and bananas.

Overall, it's bland. It's definitely the stick to your ribbiest food I've eaten since embarking on this new food adventure four months days ago, overtaking the first place spot of peanut butter and whole grain toast.

I can't eat very much of it before I'm over full. That's not a bad thing and that alone may be why this becomes my new breakfast. I definitely think it would be much better with butter and brown sugar. Without the blueberries and bananas, there is a huge choke down effect.

I want to try this with peaches and strawberries. I can see eating it with seasonal fruit.

Wednesday's post will be on the positives I'm seeing... as there are many.

As for the title of this post, it couldn't be any other title now, could it?

Posted by Boudicca at 08:30 AM | Comments (2)

February 05, 2010

Living the Life of Granola Girl

First, Bones' audition is tomorrow and he could not care one bit less.

Me?

I'm a mess.

Sometimes I need to be more like him.

Onto the edge of Granola Girl hell...

OK.

This is the deal. I'm never really hungry, but I'm never really full. I feel... empty. Does that make sense? I'm not craving anything, needing anything, but I'm not full.

I just... am.

And Dr. Oz may say he's a cardiologist, but I think he's in cahoots with the GI guys because I told my Dad, I've lost 2 pounds and it's been all water and anything left in my intestines.

All 30 feet of it. Give or take. Depending on true length.

Because when you eat like this, you either burn off the food or expel it and if you're eating yogurt and you're lactose intolerant... well... let's just say I told my Dad that if I need a colonscopy I'm eating Greek yogurt the day before.

So I have decided that starting tomorrow, I am going to try Steel Cut Oats for breakfast. And because I love you all so... I'm going to impart to you, how it goes.

First, I hate oatmeal. I don't do... mush. Second, I had heard Steel Cut Oats suck even more. Third, Dr. Oz said they're REALLY good for you and I read it helps cut down on cholesterol, plus it has a lower glycemic index than regular oatmeal.

With that I decided, "Why not? I'm all about the life experiences."

And wouldn't you know it, but my reader, Dick, happened upon saying he eats this stuff for breakfast and so I emailed him on how he prepared it and (Sorry, Dick, but this was just damn funny) he said he popped it in the microwave for 15 minutes.

*blink*

15 minutes? In a frickin' microwave? That tells me you have to boil the ever living sh** out of this stuff before you can eat it.

Yum.

So I looked on line and sure enough, I found a site that said something like, "Well, before we could never have Steel Cut Oats other than the weekends because it took so long to make, but NOW we have a simpler way and we can eat it every day!"

Great.

I'm all about simple, even if I'm making mush.

So tonight I start the process (there is a cook ahead process) and earlier this evening I went to Publix to purchase said oats. I bought a can of McCann's Steel Cut Oats, Irish Oats at that, and on the back it had a recipe for Irish Porridge.

Folks, I cannot think of anything much more unappetizing than the word "porridge". I don't want to eat anything that Oliver ate in that orphanage.

Ever.

And yet here I stood with a can of 'dried, just boil the crap out of it with water, porridge'.

I start it tonight and will report back tomorrow as I'm covering it in blueberries and bananas. I'll choke that stuff down if I have to.

And that brings me to the next topic. I have never in my life had to choke down so much food. I LOVE to eat, but honest to God, every meal I feel like I'm choking something down because it's good for me.

Greek yogurt with peaches? Big choke.

Porridge? Potential choke.

Sweet potatoes? Biggest damn choke effect so far.

My husband decided he was making hamburgers for the boys. I can eat the burger, but no cheese, no bun, no ketchup... why bother? So I sauteed some fish and had a sweet potato.

I'd heard all these great things about them, how good they are for you, blah blah, blahdefrickin'blah.

I hated them when I was 12, the last damn time I ate one, living in Taiwan, I remember the exact frickin' meal, and I frickin' hate them now.

I sat down and calculated, if your tastes change every 7 years, I was on a hate cycle when I was 12 and by my calculations, I'm still on a hate cycle. In three years I should like them.

I'll try them again in 3 years.

Over my dead damn body am I eating another until then unless it's sliced thinly, sprinkled with olive oil and garlic powder and baked at 350 for an hour so it tastes like a damn chip.

Good God. No. Sweet potatoes are the devil's something. I'm not sure what, but it's not good.

Trust me.

So tomorrow I eat Steel Cut Oats or porridge or something like that and hope the choke factor is low.

Stay tuned...

Posted by Boudicca at 10:11 PM | Comments (25)

February 04, 2010

When Greatness Shines Through

My Mom sent me this YouTube video about a 911 call. A little 5 year old girl has to talk to 911 as her Dad made it as far as dialing the phone.

As my brother says, this little girl sounds a bit like my sister did when she was little.

So the first video is funny and then the 2nd video is just audio of the entire 911 call and really shows you more of what this 5 year old did... how calm she stayed. The "I'm a little shakey too" cracked me up.

If you've not seen these videos, they're worth the effort. They'll warm your heart.

Savannah is one cool kid.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:17 PM | Comments (6)

Day 2 "On The Cusp of Hell"

First, an update on Bones as Carl had asked in comments. He is still sick as a big dog. He started antibiotics today. I've been on the phone or at the office of our pede every day this week trying to get this under control.

He IS going to his audition on Saturday... how he sounds will be a different story. He has been home all week. I have to say, it is amusing to watch him walking around in his Scooby Do boxer briefs. The boys came home from school and found him crashed on the couch in nothing but Scooby underwear and both started to grin.

It's just that funny.

The quantity of clothing he wears is directly proportionate to the amount of clothes he wears. We hate when he's really sick... he hangs around naked wrapped in a blanket. At least he's not THAT sick.

He seems clueless about auditions and isn't worried. If he's not worried... then I need to take a deep breath. We'll know more on Saturday. The steroids are upsetting his stomach but the coughing is much less today.

As for the new eating habits:

OK, it's not that bad, but it has potential.

I think until you eliminate all this stuff from your diet, you don't realize how much you eat it. My biggest problem is how tired I am. I don't have coffee in the morning, so there is that, but I'm realizing as well, that whenever I was feeling kind of tired throughout the day, I'd grab something quick to eat. A handful of chocolate chips, a handful of popcorn, one cookie.

Something.

And I'm not doing that. I'm having to be cognizant that there are grapes in the fridge, oranges on the counter, bananas in the drain rack.

Also, this type of food does not stick with you long.

Breakfast was peach greek yogurt. I'll pass on that one. It's like eating plain yogurt with pieces of peach. I had to choke it down.

Two hours later I had all natural peanut butter on whole grain bread. An hour later a handful of grapes.

For lunch I had baby spinach with sliced up pear and cashews with olive oil and red wine vinegar. Excellent. But...

At 3:40 I had a blood sugar crash, broke out in a cold sweat and panic, as I tried to figure out what I was going to do in Publix, surrounded by food that I won't eat. The guy in front of me had a Reese's and I kept thinking how quickly it would raise my blood sugar.

I got home and had a scrambled egg and a small orange and all was right with my world.

My first big ARGH! was today when I realized the one tradition the boys and I have when their Dad is out of town or at a night meeting is going to a restaurant called Mo's. We eat for under $20 and we get a big cup of Queso, with tons of chips and we eat our meal while gorging ourselves with Queso and chips.

Right.

My husband had a meeting tonight and the boys were jumping to go to Mo's and all I kept thinking was, "I can't eat anything there!"

So I suggested a sushi place down the street that we have not been to in years and they were beside themselves. So sushi it was.

Even eating sushi rolls were a problem. They're all with white rice (I got it changed to brown) and I prefer my fish cooked... and I'm not doing fried anything. So while it was an OK dinner, I definitely missed Mo's.

I'm going to frickin' miss Mo's.

A lot.

Posted by Boudicca at 05:35 PM | Comments (4)

February 03, 2010

Feeding that Furnace

My eldest boy is in the school Jazz Band, the only freshman. They needed a bass player and although he wasn't really up for it, they took him. (He didn't know how to read bass clef and had been playing his instrument a short time.)

Compared to everyone else? He sucks. He just doesn't have the time on the instrument.

But he's trying. I get email from the band director that he really is doing well, but the fact remains, he has to practice a lot, just to feel like he's coming close to keeping up. His bass instructors tell me he is very very good considering in particular the short amount of time he's been playing. "Baptism by Fire" as one of them says with my son being in Jazz Band.

He feels incompetent. He hates it.

He had a performance today and yesterday he was freaking out. To make it worse, or better, the band director had called the previous year's bass player, a freshman in college, to come back and help them out.

So part of him was happy and the other part somewhat humiliated that he needed help. Add to that the vast quantity of homework he had... and you can guess the mood he was in.

So bad was it, I wanted to offer him a crabby patty.

Him: Can we stop for a snack?

Me: No. I've got too much to do. I have to go to Publix, you can get something there.

Him: They never have anything I want.

Me: How was Jazz.

Him: I hate it. I can't play half the music. I feel like a jerk. They're calling Nick back in to play and I don't want to go to Palm Beach to do this.

Me: Do you want to quit Jazz band?

Him, looking out the window reflectively: I don't know.

I didn't say another word. Anything I said was going to be met with resistance or anger or something, so we rode in silence.

I saw a Burger King, I loathe fast food, and I pulled in and ordered his favorite, a double cheeseburger with mayo only. He was surprised but appreciative.

I let him finish his sandwich.

Me: So. Do you want to quit Jazz band?

Him: No.

Me: OK, then. Practice and let's move on.

Attitude. It's all about the food.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:42 PM | Comments (2)

Day 1 of Depreservation

So today was Day 1 of my 30 day no processed food lifestyle.

How did it go?

I realized it's going to take a lot more planning than I'd anticipated or I'm going to be hungry.

First, Greek Yogurt. Dr. Oz says it has a lot more good stuff in it, as opposed to regular yogurt. I've cheated and been buying the Greek yogurt with the fruit in the bottom and I am going to continue to do so. It doesn't have high fructose corn syrup in it and I'm OK with the sugar the fruit adds.

However... I am mildly lactose intolerant. The Greek yogurt may be what is killing me right now. We'll see. As I eliminate all other unnecessary fats from my diet, it'll be interesting to see if my body eventually takes to it, or continues to rebel. Today I took it with a Lactaid and that seems counterproductive. If my body doesn't really like something, I need to not eat it.

I was telling a buddy of mine how I'm struggling with this Greek yogurt thing and he said, "You're lactose intolerant, remember? That's what's doing it."

*blink* How did I forget that, but all my friends remember? So I replied, "They need to make lactose free Greek yogurt." He laughed and said, "I think you're asking for a bit much."

I'm giving it another week and then I switch to an egg with whole grain toast.

Bones was sick again today, which meant all my snacks were at work. I had gone back to bed when I got home from running errands (I'm not recovered from this weekend) and I got up when Bones did.

I woke up hungry.

I decided an egg sounded REALLY good. Except we didn't have any. Which left me foraging as I was hungry for protein.

Damn the peanut butter companies. They add sugar. I did end up at Publix today and found one peanut butter that was all natural, literally all ground up nuts with some added salt. Until I can get to a place that will grind my peanut butter for me (Whole Foods), I am going to eat this stuff I found... in a bind.

Instead I ate a piece of whole grain toast and a fistful of nuts with a big glass of water.

I went grocery shopping and bought shrimp, scallops and chicken for stirfry. I can't eat the noodle part, but I can eat the vegies and protein. I ate some of the scallops with an orange for lunch (sauteed in butter with garlic powder... the scallops not the orange), but will be eating vegetables mainly at lunch for now on.

As I walked down the aisles, I picked up ketchup wondering if I could make a cocktail sauce.

NO.

Ketchup is loaded with high fructose corn syrup and if you buy organic ketchup, they just substitute 'organic sugar' for corn syrup. So, that's out. I am now debating whether I should be considering mustard as a truly processed food as there are no additives or preservatives.

We'll see. As of now, it's a no.

So this is Day 1. It's all good. My eldest thinks I'm going to turn into a monster, going into cheese withdrawal. He said, "You're going to be miserable, Mom, and so you will make the rest of us."

Nice.

Not so.

Bonus, no sugar withdrawal headaches. I'm eating enough, so I'm not hungry.

If I don't plan better... I'm going to have hunger issues. No doubt.

Posted by Boudicca at 02:07 PM | Comments (7)

February 02, 2010

Fashion Conversations with Dork-Mom

Ringo: Mom, do I have to wear dark socks with my tux?

Me: Yes. Tell me you weren't thinking of wearing white...

Ringo:

Me:

Ringo: Just asking.

Me: Dark socks.

Ringo: Do they have to be long?

Me:

Ringo:

Me: I'm not going to argue about socks. Ask your Dad.

Ringo: Crap.

Me: He'll give you the straight scoop.

(In reality I know he'll believe his Dad. If I say 'dark long socks', I'm going to take crap for it because I never have to wear a tux.)

Five minutes later...

Ringo: I knew it. I shouldn't have asked.

Me: He gave you long dark socks.

Ringo: Yes.

Me: Whatever. I told you.

Ringo: You who wears your purple sweatshirt, black shorts, and fuzzy blue slippers?

Me: Hey, that's my around the house attire. I'm not being asked to play Jazz at some ritzy house on Palm Beach. YOU have to look the part. *I* however can wear whatever I want.

Ringo: You're a disaster.

Me: I'm not playing on Palm Beach. I'm allowed to be.

I love my purple sweatshirt from high school. I love my blue dead muppet slippers. I don't care how much the kids laugh...

Posted by Boudicca at 10:51 PM | Comments (4)

Eating Experiments

I feel certain that Bones has pneumonia as I type this and we'll be back to the pediatrician's tomorrow morning. First thing.

This morning at 11 I had them call me in a steroid as the croup had started. He slept all afternoon which is very not Bones. I'm nebulizing every four hours. He sounds like he's going to lose a lung.

I'm trying not to think past getting him well.

On another note, something not previously blogged, for the next month I am giving up all processed foods including, but not limited to, white flour products, sugar, and anything containing them and this will also include my giving up most cheese.

I read an article in our paper about Dr. Oz and his suggestions for living a healthy life. Some of his items I cannot abide by such as... drinking black coffee. Fair enough, no more coffee. I only drink one cup a day anyway.

I don't drink so I won't have that glass of alcohol either.

I'll be eating pretty much the same thing for breakfast and lunch every day, eating lean meats for dinner, no sauces and a lot of fresh vegies and fruit.

Every morning, as long as my stomach can take it, will be Greek yogurt OR an egg on whole grain bread. Lunch will be some type of salad with balsamic vinegar and olive oil. Snack will be almonds and raisins and I'm allowing myself three small squares of 70% dark chocolate which is evidently good for flavenoids, whatever in the hell that is.

Why am I doing this?

As one of my friends said, "This is tweaking your inner marathon running mentality isn't it? It's one more thing to see if you can get your body to do."

And... yup. He's right. There is a part of my personality being tweaked in this.

But what I really want to see is what kind of, if any, body changes will occur because of this. Will my rosacea clear up or go away? Will my migraines go away? Will most of my digestive issues go away or get worse? Will the 3:00 draggies be eliminated? Will I sleep better? Hurt less?

It's a big body experiment that I'm starting with 30 days and may extend to 90.

And you all are the recipients... as in, I'll be blogging it every day. I'll be blogging the highs and lows and all that comes in between.

What I do not expect is weight loss, although I am weighing myself before just to see what happens in 30 days.

No processed sugar or foods. No high fat meats. No triscuits and cheese.

I'll be eating like a caveman, except for my Greek yogurt.

We shall see. Stay tuned. Tomorrow is Day 1. March 3 is the tentative last day.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:42 PM | Comments (6)

February 01, 2010

It Shouldn't Be So Hard

Y'all have been reading me long enough to know that I'm not one of these helicopter Moms who can't let their kids do their thing, be their person, hovering, pushing, living vicariously through their offspring.

Good Lord if this thing with Bones isn't about to send me around the damn bend.

Y'all have read about him enough to know that he's not a round peg child. What bugs the crap out of me is there are a TON of kids that are not round pegs and our society seems hell bent on sanding down all their edges, turning them into round pegs and making them fit, "DAMMIT!", into that hole.

At all costs.

Every child has to sit. Every child has to learn the same way. Every child has to...

And it pisses me off. Until I had a child like Bones, I never realized what a disservice we do to our children who think a little differently.

And let me tell you something folks, it's the kids that think a little differently that we need to think a little differently as adults... for they will be the ones to see things the rest of us round pegs don't frickin' see.

Trust me.

And as bat crap crazy as he makes me, it is seeing the world through his eyes that I realize, my world was black, white and gray before him... and he adds color.

Not only did I call the school first thing, get Bones an appointment with our pediatrician, and get a letter stating he needs to postpone as I was told to do... instead of FAXing it there, I frickin' DROVE THERE and hand delivered it, met with someone, and rescheduled for 2:00 on Saturday, the absolute last audition time possible.

If he doesn't audition then, it's not happening.

And although I was told that the voice teachers can tell if a child can sing, Bones sick is not the same as Bones well, and his voice teacher has told me repeatedly, that although Bones can sing, it is the whole package that will sell him. She said he sparkles and has something inside him that people want to be around.

Well, some people. Don't ask his 4th grade teacher. That wasn't the case. May he rot.

So he's on a cough suppressant and we have myriad things we are doing to get him ready for Saturday.

I'm watching this thinking, "NO. This is not my life. What am I becoming?"

My girlfriend Leigh (commenting in the previous post) and I were discussing this at Audition sign ups. She and I have very similar personalities, both mothers of three boys. We both find ourselves doing things as women/mothers, that never in a million years would we have believed 20 years ago if you'd been a soothsayer and led us down this path.

Boy Moms are just a different breed and if we're not born that way, we're cast into it via fire.

We were laughing in the auditorium about how we were trying to remain so calm for our kids, but inside we're screaming to make this work. This school... we're looking at with so much hope.

It's making me a freakin' basket case. I found myself in the pouring rain today, driving to the school, leaving Bones in the car so he'd not make them sick (dock points for bringing sickness into a school), and as I walked in I realized... holy crap. I was in my run around, dash to the pediatrician clothes.

I was in black shorts, a purple sweatshirt from HIGH SCHOOL (my sister is loving that one... I'm 44), and my eldest boy's checkered Vans. I was the complete multi-generational fashion disaster.

Bonus for me, I was wearing make up and and my hair was clipped up instead of looking like I'd rolled out from under a couch.

Bones had his theater audition two weeks ago. It went OK. I'm sure he passed it, but I don't think he'd have gotten in with theater. He readily admitted he did not click with the judges.

That's the deal with theater... it is so subjective even at this age, whereas for voice it is more of a 'can he keep the pitch, repeat a note, sing a song?'.

And as I put in the comments to Leigh, it was an absolute sea of children from every walk of life.

And there were little girls stretching for dance, all of their hair in little buns if not cut short, and some of them so limber you could not help but stare as their bodies twisted in ways that my body NEVER twisted and that I feel certain they were not designed to bend to.

There were kids with drum sets, guitars and every other instrument of size imaginable. There were amazing projects for the kids doing Communication. I have no idea what these structures were, some of them, but it had Bones and I talking.

Then of course there was the vast animation and chatter that can of course be attributed to kids in general, but I feel certain belonged to a lot of the theater kids for when the theater kids left, the room got a bit... quieter.

I sat in the back of the room with my logic book working puzzles trying not to overthink the entire thing when a Mom I knew back when Bones was two found me and we spoke for the next hour about our bleak options if our kids don't get in.

I damn near have a stroke every time I think of his not getting in. And I know that's how 75% of the other parents feel as well.

And I find myself once again on a planet I am unfamiliar with as I talk to my girlfriend about his voice, her husband being a voice specialist. I'm a boy Mom. Bones likes to play airsoft guns with his brothers, he loves playing football in the rain because then his brothers drop the ball and he has a chance, he plays shoot 'em up video games, and on any given day is nearly hanging from my proverbial rafters.

And I'm worried about how to take care of his voice for an audition? I'm actually on the verge of a meltdown over this? Really? ME?

It just needs to be over so we can move on because we all know it's not really the audition throwing me over the edge but the fact if he doesn't get in... my options are so... bleak and damaging to him.

And I promise I will never look back on any of this and laugh. None of this will ever be funny.

Ever.

Bones waiting.jpg
Bones waiting for me today, not looking too sick, but sounding like crap.

OK. Maybe the picture is funny.

A little.

Posted by Boudicca at 01:36 PM | Comments (7)