Saturday, May 26, 2012


1. My birthday was awesome and I had a fantastic time with family here; I was sad to see them go home.
2. Reimond is having a blast in Alaska, and I am so happy he had the opportunity to go, even if there were some difficulties prior to his leaving (at school--he dropped a level and got upset, was assessed a 2 day oos suspension).
3. My eyes have been really bugging me this week, and combined with some other stressors, I have been dealing with migraine-type headaches off and on all week, resulting in being behind in my school assignments.
4. This term is kicking my proverbial a$$ because I just am not into ed psych--I don't plan to teach, I am not interested in learning theories, and I am lost in the language.  I am maintaining an A so far this term, but I am working at it and not enjoying any part of it!
5. There have been a few family stressors that have been coming to a head off and on this week, and I am tired of the drama and the attitudes and the blaming...  ('nuff said).
6. An old, dear friend has returned to Everquest after an extensive hiatus and I really want to play more than I had been.  It's hard to see Eric having fun while I keep my nose to the grindstone sometimes, but I am dealing with it by using time online as a reward for getting stuff done (or as a break when my brain goes into overload (see 2 & 3, lol).
7.  I started my May socks on the train home from the airport (dropping Rei off on Wed.) so I can "legally" count them towards my SKA challenge, and not miss a start since I joined; IF I don't finish the April sock on or before the 31st though this will be my first "fail" in this challenge.  Am plugging away as Skye let's me.
8. I have gotten better at spinning on the spindle, and spend about 10-15 mins practicing every few days.  Love the Merino wool I am practicing on, and hope to turn it into something useable when it is all spun up as singles.
9. Skye is becoming quite a challenge to keep up with of late. She is very busy trying to do whatever she has seen us do, and is not easily dissuaded from whatever she sets her mind to.  She is a strong-willed, independent child, and I am getting tired of saying NO constantly and trying to redirect her.  Love her to pieces, am so very proud of how smart she is, but wish she could just be satisfied with playing with HER toys, in one spot, so I can get things done that need to be done instead of chasing her around trying to corral her into one area.
10. I am really looking forward to going to Florida (if everything stays according to plan) and having a change of scenery for a few days; really looking forward to seeing the ocean again, and even the car ride  and reading/knitting while we travel (less looking forward to helping drive, given my eyes).

Time to hit the assignments again....  After I get more coffee and some toast!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Three more days and counting!

Thursday, May 17th, 2012 -- You're at another turning point in your life, but everything could seem more important now than it actually is. It still may take several months to gain clarity about your long-term goals, yet your current choices are instrumental in setting a new direction. Don't be overly concerned if you can't synthesize your desires into one single goal. Just allow your daydreams to flow without analysis; you will have plenty of time to make sense of it all later on.

This was my horoscope for today and I am posting it here to remind myself to keep my eyes on the goals before me and undertand that "All things work together for the good of those who love God" (paraphrasing). My mom, sister, daughter, and niece are on the road and headed south to me.  I am so excited!  I woke up at 6:30 and couldn't go back to sleep!  This is only the 2nd time the three of them have been here (Liisa is, of course, here quite regularly), and I cannot wait to see them! 

Difficult news from the eye doctor: vision in my left eye is no longer correctable with glasses, and while vision in my right eye is still correctable, it too has deteriorated.  The macula looks good, and everything else seems fine, even the cataracts don't look like they have changed all that much, but my vision continues to deteriorate, so I am seeing a specialist (surgeon) on June 7th to see what my options are.  I am scared (I hate the thought of anyone messing with my eyes!) and yet I am also resigned to doing whatever is necessary to correct my vision.  I need to be able to see to enjoy all my handwork, my books, and my photos.  Getting older isn't for sissies!

Anyhow, I have an assignment to do so that I am free to play the rest of the weekend.  Looking forward to a wonderful time!

Monday, May 14, 2012

On the count-down to 50!

Last week, I was running Rei and his friend to an appointment, and while listening to the story they were telling, glanced down at my speed and realized I had accelerated more than anticipated (Eric's pilot drives soooo smoothly compared to the van!). I hit the brake to slow down as I looked up, and sure enough, one of Mascoutah's finest was parked on a side road with a speed gun and I got nailed...  Stupid ticket--I have NEVER had a speeding ticket before!  I sucked it up though and was gracious with the officer as he wrote me up, and paid my fine by mail with a wry grimace...  I told Eric it was a last act of rebellion before turning 50.

My mom and sister are driving down on Thursday morning and Liisa is supposed to be coming too.  Unfortunately, Liisa is really sick right now (fever, bad throat, swollen glands, puking from the fever, chills, etc.) She called off work last night, and went to urgent care.  Given how sick she was, they called in a prescription of penecillin for her to a pharmacy that closed before she got there (she picked it up this morning), and they are waiting on strep results (quick strep was negative). She is concerned about coming down if she is sick, but hopefully by Thursday morning she will be feeling well enough to come see me.

Reimond got a letter from our district congressman on official  House of Representatives letterhead paper congratulating him on making honor roll third quarter.  We didn't realize he had made honor roll, so we were thrilled!  Rei called me and said "Mom, I bet you never thought you'd hear these words coming out of my mouth before..." then told me he was on the honor roll.  So very proud of him!

Reimond's birthday was yesterday and he spent a large part of it hanging with friends to celebrate. I think he enjoyed his day.  I had a decent mother's day too.  Spent a large part of the day writing a paper that was due last night, then spent some time in the garden with Eric working on things, and played some Everquest. Eric made coffee cake and fresh fruit for breakfast, and grilled steak, corn on the cob, and made rice for dinner, and Aurora made a lovely and tasty dessert in my honor.  She and Dan also made chocolate chip cookies for Rei (and the family) for his birthday. The weather was perfect and I couldn't have asked for a better day!

Last night was a struggle though. Skye had gotten all riled up when she should have been settling for bed, and she could not settle for anything last night. She screamed and wailed so much that I ended up sitting in the rocker with her downstairs, cuddling her and singing to her.  When she was settled I tried to lay her down but the screaming resumed, so back down we went. She fell asleep in my arms at midnight, slept an hour, then woke screaming again.  Back downstairs we went, and rocked for another half hour.  Finally at 1:30 I put her to bed and went to sleep myself (Brie had to go to bed cuz she worked at 6 this morning, and Eric had to be up at 3:45, leaving me to deal with the punk!  She got up in a great mood for the day just after 10, and we have had a good day since!

I called and scheduled a new eye appt for myself for tomorrow morning at 10.  My vision is getting bad again to the point I am getting tension headaches and I am struggling to read my research articles, texts, and the computer.  Cannot sew or cross stitch right now by hand, and even knitting on small needles (Still have to finish the April socks, and haven't touched any for May) is challenging to focus clearly on.  It is scary and maddening.  I don't know that I am quite ready for surgery, but I definitely need my lenses tweaked if nothing else.  Bah!

Ok, Skye is firmly napping, Brie is off to do a couple of errands herself, and I have things to do downstairs.  I think it's safe to get moving on chores now.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Twice in one week!

An update of sorts...

Brie got sent home from work because they had way too many people scheduled and those they kept had the fewest hours on the books.  For me it is a blessing because I can do a marathon homework day (including dvr-ing my two Wednesday night shows I like to watch later on): Eric is at work all day and class tonight, so I will have few interruptions (I hope).

The principal at the high school approved Reimond's absence of 3 days for his trip to Alaska, so I have bought the plane tickets for him and he is set: will be leaving on Wed. the 23rd after school (a 5:45 pm flight out, getting into Anchorage at 12:36 a.m.), and he'll come home on May 29th, after flying all day.  Between the time zone changes and layovers each way (a short one in Phoenix on the way out, a three hour one in Minneapolis on the way back), they are gonna be long days for him, but he is excited and his girlfriend (according to her mother), is beside herself with joy.  This is Reimond's 18th birthday present, as well as a reward for turning his life around so thoroughly, and a celebration of his reaching adulthood.  In many ways I am jealous of this trip--I'd love to see Alaska--but I am also so very proud. Her family is grateful too that we are sending him, because between the mother's surgery for cancer and other issues, having Rei there for their daughter will be a support.  I was especially proud of Reimond because I left it to him to talk to the school about taking these three days off as excused absences, and he had to create a contract (with the support of his classroom teacher and the social worker) in order to get them, but he did it, and I was pleased with how grown-up he was.

So!  We have Rei's birthday and Mother's Day Sunday, my mom and sister (and maybe others) arriving the following Thursday for my birthday weekend, with them leaving on the 21st, then Rei leaving the 23rd for Alaska, coming home the 29th; then the last day of high school for him is June 11th followed by his flight to MN for the summer, with Brie and I leaving later in the week for Florida...  Oh, and finishing up my term, including two assignments each week, and a major paper due every other week (including this week) for the next 6 weeks....  No wonder my head is swimming!

Aurora just left to take her last two finals, and Brie has finals this week and (I believe) into early next week, then she too is done.  Eric has about 3 more weeks to go (I believe) then he is done too for a couple weeks...  And Patrick has a job in Florida, working at Pizza Hut down there.  Not sure of how many hours, but it's a job and it's a start...  He says things are going ok for him, and seems happy, although he's recognizing that "parenting" is harder than one thinks!

Ok, time to get dressed, find another cup of coffee, and hit the books!

Monday, May 7, 2012

Sorry for the absence on here...

Life has been kicking my a$$ the past few weeks.  Not sure what (if anything) has significantly changed, but I feel like I have been a one-armed paper-hanger of late and finding time to sit with my thoughts, let alone write them out, has been a trial.

Fortunately for me, Eric is on his short week this week, and the girls are in finals, so hopefully I will have more help with the baby and can get myself caught back up and on track again.  I am a week behind in assignments (didn't get last week's done for any number of reasons, including exhaustion at the end of the day) but I need to get those caught up, along with doing the three due this week.  My house is coming together (been tackling spring cleaning) and I have stopped confining the toddler to the livingroom, which has added to my exhaustion as she tests boundaries and limits of cabinets, buttons, doors, and stairs (if the gate is not up). It is something she needs to come to terms with (the word NO), especially given what an escape artist ("problem solver") she already is, but it is a challenge keeping up with her, and she has the attention span of a flea. Biggest challenge is with the dogs--she wants to feed them, lay on them, and generally pester them--and getting her to understand that they are bigger than her and not as interested in being her toy as she is in corralling them and interacing with them.

I have been taking her outside to wear off energy, and it helps that the neighborhood kids flock over when she is out (extra eyes and distractions) but it's been so hot lately that I try not to let her over-do things. I have had little to no time to myself for handwork or other distractions, and of course, that results at times in a cranky, crabby grandma too.  This little girl of ours is strong-willed, determined, and inquisitive, but she is also tender-hearted and her feelings are easily bruised, so it's a fine line trying to navigate encouragement and discipline.  Blech!

Reimond's girlfriend is not able to come to IL after all for his birthday/prom, and now we are looking at trying to send him up to Alaska for Memorial weekend...  It will mean missing a few days of school, and that may be a problem; on the one hand I think it would be good for him to go, but on the other, he already has so much on his plate that I don't want to overwhelm him.  So hard to believe he's going to be 18 next Sunday (Mother's Day!).  And Tony turned 27 yesterday.  I had a really nice chat with him last night after he got home from work.  Man I miss my family in MN.  It helps to talk to them, but I really need some facetime. 

Anyhow, here I am procrastinating homework while I have the time to do it, so that is the update for now.