Tag Archives: back to school

A very Trying Tuesday.

Well.. the weekend went by way too fast, and here it is Tuesday. and a trying Tuesday it has been.

I really wanted to get up and go to the gym, I didn’t hear any of my 3 alarms that I set to get up at 5.  I guess I needed to sleep.

I was rudely awakened by a Maniac pooptastrophy. UGH. I don’t know what she’s been eating… actually I think it’s probably the allergy medicine I’ve been giving her.. but the last couple days have been some of the foulest, nastiest smelling packages she has ever shared with me. Just what I wanted to deal with a 7am.  And it required a hose-down in the bath tub both times it happened this morning.  EWWWW. And you should consider yourself lucky i did not go into further detail of the situation.

In other excitement… the Teen decided to take Choir as her elective this year. I’m not really sure why exactly, being that she has never showed any interest in singing before and I’m not confident that she could carry a tune in a bucket. But whatever, that’s what she picked and she actually go it.  She has been in Choir for 5 minutes. Okay, today will be the 7th class she’s had. and they have a performance tonight at the “Back To school Night.” I am not sure how they could have even learned the words to a song in 7 hours.

I guess we shall see how that goes for her. I keep forgetting about back to school night. I would have been completely content not getting out of my PJ’s today. Then i realized at about 1pm that we have to go to it. I wouldnt mind so much if it wasnt for the incredibly crazy 3-year-old I have to drag along with me. I am not really a fan of taking her anywhere lately… this should be a super awesome good time. We have to follow the Teen’s schedule and go from class to class and listen to all of her teachers give a little talk about their classes this year.  last year it was not pretty. By the time we got to about 4th period, the Maniac was over it. I don’t think we even went to her last period class because of all the screaming. I may have to break out the big guns and let her play games on my phone or something if I have to.

And in even more exciting news… my wonderful Hubby will be home tomorrow afternoon for a few days. YAY! That is, Now that we got his flights fixed. The new girl who made his reservations didn’t know that he doesn’t fly into LAX…so she had him flying in there at 4:30 pm. Yea.. I’m not driving  the 1-1.5 hours it is with no traffic to LAX, let alone at rush hour. It would take me 2 hours to get there and 3 hours to get home. Especially when even with traffic, it takes about 20 minutes to get to his usual airport.  Luckily she was able to change it.

At least he will be home for a little while. Then he goes back to North Carolina for a week and hopefully will be back for a few days before they ship him off somewhere else. woo. yea, i can’t think about that yet. I’m just going to be thankful that I get to see him tomorrow!

Well.. that’s all the excitement for now. I need to go gather my Maniac entertainment supplies and figure out what to feed them for dinner!




“To a nice chic who is almost always in a bad mood.” ~ Remembering 8th Grade

In honor of my Teen embarking on her 8th grade journey today, I thought I’d take a walk down memory lane.

For me, 8th grade  was the 1986-1987 school year.   No, I just can’t say that was 25 years ago out loud. Crap, I just did.  I mean… man, that was a long time ago.

I can’t recall what I wore on the first day of school, but let me tell you about the ensemble I pulled together for my school picture.  It was either a sign of the times or a sign that I was definitely marching to the beat of my own drummer.

Picture it: Bright yellow blazer with bright blue shirt.. or maybe it was a bright blue blazer and a bright yellow shirt.  A lapel pin that was a lady’s head with a mohawk (I wish I still had that pin) and I’m pretty sure I was rockin’ the 4 in wide white belt with it. Oh yea… I thought I was awesomesauce. I wish I had a copy of the color picture… the black and white in my 8th grade yearbook doesn’t do it justice.  I won’t even go into my hair or the glasses. Man, they were big. The glasses, not my hair.

8th Grade memories:

1. One of the girls who made my life a living hell in 7th grade sat across from me in home room. She introduced me to my beloved Poison by lending me her tape.

2. My BFF was a girl named Kelly. She had a shit-zu named Bruno. She was obsessed with Tom Cruise.

3. My very first concert and the start of a huge part of my teenage life- Bon Jovi Slippery When Wet Tour March 27,1987. We had row M on the floor of the Civic Arena in Pittsburgh, PA. (Yes, back when they actually put chairs there.)  They filmed the “Wanted Dead or Alive” video there that night. We found ourselves in it once.

The Bon Jovi Shirt

the back... March 27-Pittsburgh, PA

Oh,  I can’t write this without mentioning THE Bon Jovi jean jacket. This was just not any Bon Jovi  jean jacket.. but one I made myself.  Well,  “made” in the sense of I put silver studs all over the back of my jacket spelling out BON JOVI.  Again, I thought I was awesomesauce. Sadly I don’t have a picture of this masterpiece. But I wore it A LOT.

4. We used to spend countless hours on the phone voting for the “Top 8 at 8” on B94 fm trying to get “Talk Dirty to Me” by Poison on the countdown.  One time the DJ (His name was John Cline)answered and asked us if we wanted to be on a commercial. .. well DUH! of course we did! So,one weekend back in 1987 you heard their commercial for a Bon Jovi tickets contest and some girls screaming “I WANT MY BON JOVI CONCERT TICKETS!!!!!” that was me and Kelly.

The Countdown Calendar! I pulled off a post it every day.. were post its even invented yet?

5. My Algebra teacher had the worst comb-over in the history of comb-overs.

6. I was the honorary ball girl at a Pittsburgh Spirit game in April of 1987. The Spirit was the professional soccer team that the Burgh had for a few years. We used to go to games a lot. I wrote a letter saying that being the ball girl would be “the highlight of my life.”  And I guess they thought I was cute because I got picked. I got to go down on the field and have my picture taken with my favorite player who was Godfrey Ingram. I don’t know why I remember that.  The team autographed ball (and Godfrey’s signature is the only one that is smudged) is still in my garage. I have the picture too.. but I’m not sure where that is at the moment.

7.  After looking back through my year book… it seems the theme was that everyone wrote “to a nice but weird girl” or a “sweet but strange girl.” I wonder why I was weird and strange.  I think my favorite thing someone wrote is: “To a nice chic who is almost always in a bad mood.” What is that about I wonder?

8. I went through my memory box to see what I could find of 8th grade. Not much really. I have far more from high school and college than middle school. I did find these though- the program and streamers from our “8th grade Farewell” dance.  I want to say I danced with a boy at that dance, but I’m not sure who that was.

8th Grade Farewell program & Streamers

9. I was in the school Chorus and the school’s fancy singing group called “Showcase.” I still have no idea how I made it in the group. But you got to audition at the end of 6th grade and then you were in for 7th & 8th.  I remember being horrified that for the Spring choral concerts we had to wear flannel shirts and sing John Denver’s “Thank God I’m a Country Boy.” Which is a fine song and all… but not when you have to sing it in front of your entire school.

10.  Our school had just finished being remodeled at the start of that year. We had a new gym floor and it was forbidden to have sneakers with black soles on them, in fear of them leaving marks on the brand new shiny floor. No worries, I had red high top Reeboks. Did I mention the marching to the beat of my own drummer thing? 😉

They looked something like this
What’s your favorite 8th grade memory?

Back in the land of the living

Well, I think I am officially back in the land of the living. Whew. I hate being sick. Especially that nasty flu sick. I will be just fine if it’s another 7 years or more until I get that again.

Anyway.. It’s a good thing I am feeling better today since we had to go to school this morning and get the Teens schedule and text books. I think this makes her really truly officially and 8th grader. Crazy.

Anyway… I barely survived that trip since I have been asleep for two days and have barely eaten. I was sweating profusely the entire time even though it was 73 degrees outside. I felt like i went from 0 to 60 in 5 seconds and then hit a wall. Awesome. Luckily the lines weren’t too long and we got out of there pretty fast.

We came home and have been just relaxing since. I did go to McDonalds to get cheeseburgers since that is all I could think about yesterday. I ate half of mine and some French fries. Which is better than the applesauce and stale saltines I ate yesterday.

I will say if there is a plus side to the flu.. I did lose 6 pounds since Tuesday. Now if only that would actually stay off I would be super happy. I am actually missing the gym. I can’t wait to feel well enough to go back!

Oh well… I think that’s enough for now. We still have to go over to the school district office and pay for the Teen’s bus pass. I was going to do it this morning but the line was out the door. I’m hoping that it will be better since the Back to school thing is over today.. Although somehow I doubt it since school starts in 3 days.

I wish you a good weekend! I will be finishing the housework that the flu prevented (since our landlord will be here on Monday for the yearly home inspection)… And hopefully finding something fun to do for the Teen. Pinkberry is most definitely on the agenda. 🙂

She survived her day… but gave me a heart attack

We walked to the bus stop this morning… the impending doom of her first day of middle school weighing hard on K’s shoulders.  We chit chatted, she said she got two “happy first day of school” text messages. One from my sister and one from her mother. I laughed because she commented on how her mother typed “B” instead of be. The text-speak seems to drive her crazy too. I asked if she wanted me to go stand with her at the stop, and she said no. I stayed across the street just to make sure she got on the bus okay, after all this was the first time she has ever taken the bus to school. As she walked across the street, KT freaked out screaming “Shee-shoooo! Sheeee-shoooo!” (That is “sister” in KT-speak). Then she cried that she wanted to take the bus too. by the time the bus actually came (10 minutes late) KT had calmed down, and K was chatting with a blonde girl. I told her she’d have a friend before she got on the bus.

Whew. Now I just had to deal with MY anxiety all day of how her day was going.  Since we were up way earlier than normal… I actually got some things done. We went to Target to get diapers. I might be weird, but I love Target first thing in the morning. I don’t know why exactly.. I think it just has a more mellow vibe at 9am. By the time we were checking out… we had diapers, goldfish crackers, several items from the $1 bin that were only $.50, back to school cards for my niece and nephew and $10 gift cards to go in them. So much for just diapers.

After we got home, We played outside… well, played isn’t the right word. KT dug in the sand,  dug in the dirt, threw the dirt and/or sand at any combination of me, the ground and the dog. When I couldn’t take it anymore,  back inside we went. Which meant practically a bath and fresh clothes. Then the portrait studio called and the last large picture of KT that we had taken a few weeks ago was done. So we ran over to Kmart to pick that up. I chatted with the lady there for a while, she wasnt busy at all. We left there with not only our portrait, but 3 pairs of shoes (2 for me, 1 for KT. Mine were Buy one Get one half off, and hers were 50% off the clearance price), a giant bag of dum dums and a bag of potting soil.

Then it was home for some gardening! I transplanted the hibiscus I bought a few weeks ago into the fancy pots I bought at IKEA. My garden helper was more counter-productive than anything. We were watering the plants and she was trying to fill up the watering can while holding it with one hand and the hose with the other; watering can dumping water out as fast as it was going in. It was cute and she tried really hard to help. she was a very good dirt scooper though.

I started emptying out the boxes of pictures to hang.  I have a gazillion pictures. I love to be surrounded by memories and the people I love. And FINALLY 3:30 rolled around. I got KT changed and juiced and we walked back up to the bus stop. We got there a couple of minutes before it was supposed to arrive. 3:46 goes by…. then its 3:50… 3:55… 4:00…. I keep telling myself: Okay, it’s the first day, the bus was late this morning, I’m sure they have to make sure everyone is on the right bus. Finally! A bus! Kids start unloading…. girl… boy…. girl, girl, not K, not K, boy…  then the bus pulls away. Um… that’s not good.  I stopped a girl and asked her what bus number it was… okay don’t panic. Not her bus.

4:05…. 4:10…. Woo hoo! Here comes her bus! Kids… boy… boy… girl.. girl.. girl, girl, not K, not K, not K,… boy…. The kids stop coming. Hmmmm….. THe bus is still sitting there…. then it pulls away!

WTF. She;s supposed to be on that bus. I fill with panic. What do I do!?!?!?! This is the part where I have a heart attack.  Breathe. Try her cell phone….

Voicemail. she didn’t turn it back on. Crap.

Call the school. Start walking swiftly home. By this time KT was passed out in the stroller. (Yay!)

“Um.. my daughter wasnt on her bus I don’t know what to do.”  I told them her name, and was put on hold. “Mam, we did have a bus break down.”  “No, there were two busses that came and went and she didn’t get off either one.” “Okay.. hold on again.”

As I am about 4 houses away from home… a neighbor stops me. “Are you looking for your kid too?” “Yea, she was supposed to be on that bus and she wasnt on either one.  I’m on hold with the school right now.”  Her daughter was MIA too. The office lady comes back on ” Mam, is there a number I can reach you at? I’m going to call transportation.” “Sure. and I was just talking to my neighbor and her daughter wasnt on the bus either.” “Hmmm… I’ll call you back.”

I get to the house, throw a sleeping KT in the truck. She calls back-

Apparently my wonderful-no-common-sense-having-doesnt-pay-any-attention-to-the-world-around-her-brand-new-bus-riding-seventh-grader DIDNT GET OFF THE BUS.

She “didn’t recognize the stop” and stayed on the bus. GEEEEEZ! WHEW! UGH! A million things go through my head, mostly relief. At least I know where she is.  The bus driver was going to bring her back around. (As it turns out, neighbors kid was not on the bus with her. I hope she found her.)

When she got off the bus the poor thing was crying her eyes out.  “I’m sorry! I’m sorry!” I reassured her that it was okay, and she wasnt in trouble and she just needed to pay attention. She felt really bad that the driver had to bring her back. She said she didn’t realize she wasnt supposed to be on there until she heard her name on the radio because “there were still kids on the bus.”  Oh well, at least she’ll know better next time. And I did read her the riot act about her phone.  This is the exact thing she has it for, not just to call her friends. You get on the bus, you turn it back on. Period. End of story.

Other than that little snafu, she seems like she had a good day. She said the class she thought she would hate most was her favorite (Social Studies) and the one she thought would be her favorite was not (Art).  She will be dissecting owl pellets, sheep eyes and frogs at some point during the year in Science class. OMG Dissecting sheep eyes- MOST.DISGUSTING.THING.EVER! YUCK!

It will be interesting to see what happens once she has homework that isn’t a page or two out of a workbooks and reading… REAL homework. Studying. Projects. That will be fun. Who am I kidding? It will be no fun at all. For either of us.

Until next time…

To my daughter on your first day of Middle School

To my darling daughter-

15 things you should know on your first day of Middle School… and always.

1. Be yourself. You don’t have to try to be anyone but the friendly, kind, sweet, wonderful, brave, beautiful girl you are.

2. If people don’t like that, then you don’t need then as your friends.

3. Dont stand for people doing mean things to you. Stand up for yourself. Dont let yourself be bullied.

4. Should you get into a situation where you are being bullied, Tell me, tell your dad, tell a teacher- JUST TELL SOMEONE!

5. Always make sure your skirt is not tucked into anything when you come out of the bathroom. (underwear, pantyhose) Trust me on this one. So embarrassing.

6. Don’t write notes to cute boys and try to pass them to them in class. This too can be incredibly embarrassing, especially when your science teacher gets hold of it and reads it out loud to your entire class.

7. It’s okay to like whom ever you end up liking… its bound to happen sooner or later. Dont be afraid to like someone. And when your crush finds out, and they don’t like you back, it’s going to hurt. And that’s okay . If they were easy, and didn’t hurt, they’d call them something else.

8. Never be afraid to tell us anything. We will always be here for you, ready to listen, to help, and to do whatever you need.

9. always remember that the world isn’t going to end if we don’t let you do something that “everyone is doing.” We always have what we think are good reasons for our decisions. We are always willing to listen to what you have to say.

10. Honesty is ALWAYS the best policy.

11. your decisions now, even the little ones, help shape the teenager you will be… you are going to want to do bigger and better things in the next few years.

12. You are going to make mistakes AND THAT’S OKAY. None of us got this far without making mistakes. Some BIG, some small. But mistakes were made by us all. (hey that rhymes). But the key is learning from those mistakes.

13. Not that there are many around anymore, and you do have the cell phone: Know how to make a toll call or a collect call from a pay phone. And make sure you know our phone numbers by heart.

14. Please continue to march to the beat of your own drummer. No matter what anyone else may tell you or think.

15. Know that you are LOVED, BEAUTIFUL, and an AMAZING person. You are the bravest person I know. And we are so very proud of you.

Wise beyond her years… at the ripe old age of 12

School starts tomorrow. My dear step daughter is going to 7th grade, her first year in Middle School. She is REALLY nervous. On top if it being her first year in the infamous “Middle School” this is her first year in this school district, she doesn’t know a single person there, and the first time ever riding the bus. (I have driven her to school every day since the first day of first grade.) She’s really getting hit with a triple whammy tomorrow. I totally get her nerves. But I keep reminding her that this is a foreign place for ALL of the 7th grade, not just her. I think that really helps, know that She’s not completely the “new kid.”

I know she will be fine. She has no problem making friends and school is like her safe place, so once she gets into the swing of things I know she will flourish.

In honor of today being her last day of summer vacation, we went out to a “Farewell Summer” dinner. We went to BJ’s Restaurant & Brewery. I love it there, everything is so yummy! K had never been, so I thought I’d go a little outside of our norm. (I “liked” them in Facebook yesterday, and havent stopped thinking about going there since.)

We had a nice dinner.. K had the “best pizza ever” a mini deep dish with sausage and tomatoes. I had a turkey club with fries and KT had a mini burger with rice that she surprisingly didn’t eat. She LOVES rice. You can’t go to BJ’s without getting dessert. The Pizzookie is to die for!

The Pizookie Trio

MMMMMMmmmmm! I was living on the wild side and we got the trio. Oh, if you aren’t familiar with this wonderous dessert, a Pizzookie is a freshly baked cookie topped with ice cream. We got three small portions of Peanut butter cookie, White Chocolate Macadamia and the traditional chocolate chip. It was good. K took her first bite and said “This is life changing!” KT was just chanting “I love cookie!”  I was just in peanut butter heaven.  Yep, we ate all of it.

All gone!

After dinner, we ran over to Ulta. I needed to get some makeup… I threw away all my eye makeup since I had that eye infection a couple of weeks ago. I wasnt sure what I had used right before it started so I just chucked it all. So $40 later we were heading home. K says: “I can’t believe that was as much as dinner was.” “yea well… i don’t spend a lot of money on my hair or most anything else for myself, but I LOVE my make up.” I wear Bare Escentuals by the way. Best.Makeup.Ever.  Its pricey, but I would marry it if I could. (Dont tell P, he might not appreciate that.lol) You’ve probably run across the Bare Minerals infomercial at some point. The one where you dip, tap and buff! Love it!

We get in the truck, and K asks when I started wearing makeup. I got a Cover GIrl or maybe it was Maybelline eye shadow quad for my 13th birthday. It had pink, green, blue and purple. I was hooked. Then I told her about my love of makeup. I seriously used to wear all that crazy colored mascara when it first came out… I remember having blue, green, purple, pink and yes, yellow. My mom HATED the pink and yellow. She said it made me look sick.Of course it did, especially when I wore pink mascara, eye liner, eye shadow, blush and lipstick all at the same time. I must have looked like a train wreck. But I thought it was cool. Oh those wacky 80’s!

After my little walk down memory lane, she told me that she really didn’t get makeup. “Why do people wear it?  I don’t see the point.” Which is a great attitude for her to have, me not wanting her to grow up and all.  Where do you even begin to start with that? Well, I wear it because I like it.  Some people wont leave the house without a full face of makeup. I’m not like that. Although, I’d rather leave with at least mascara and eye liner.( If I was stranded on a desert island, I would want mascara and eye liner. If I could only have one, it would be mascara.) Some people are insecure and are trying to cover up things that make them uncomfortable or that they don’t like about themselves. She said “I don’t think that’s right. People wearing makeup to hide things. Then they end up hiding from other people and hiding other things. All because they are insecure. “

“Everyone is insecure about something, not everyone likes everything about themselves. It all boils down to your self-esteem. You just have you not care what anyone thinks, and be proud of who you are.”   “I like to march to the beat of my own drummer. I don’t care what people think. And neither do my friends.” “And that’s why they are your friends. Because you just gravitate to each other like that. I want in any kind of clique in High School. My friends and I just did our thing, I definitely was my own drummer… Hello… yellow mascara!  And you will make the same kind of friends at this school.”   “Even if someone says something mean to you, it’s all about how you handle it.” “Exactly. You just have to let it roll off your back.”

“I guess makeup is okay if you just like it, and aren’t trying to hide anything, or impress anyone.”  “And sometimes a girl just needs to feel a little extra pretty.” “oh, and if it makes you feel good. That’s okay.”

“Wow K, how’d you get so wise?” “Um.. I think it’s because I read every book I can get my hands on.” I was hoping for “From my wonderful, wise parents.” But, I’ll take that. I can only hope that she keeps on marching to the beat of her own drummer… to keep that attitude throughout high school and beyond would be incredible. But she is a pretty amazing kid.

Until next time….

Back to School Baby Mama Drama

So I havent really talked that much about my darling Step daughter yet…  when I started blogging she was away at camp, and then at Grandma’s house and now she is home.

Honestly I don’t know what I would have done without her these last couple weeks.  She is such a huge help with KT, especially since I was sick. I never would have gotten better if I didn’t have K  to keep an eye on her so I could get some sleep. I think I got so sick in the first place because I couldn’t just sleep it off.   At the same time there are days where she drives me crazy.  I think its because even after living together for the last 6 years, we are not wired the same at all and neither one of us gets the way the other thinks.  I always forget then when we are in the middle of one of our “fights.”

She is a pretty amazing kid.  She’s been through a lot in her 12 years. In a lot of ways she is wise beyond her years, and in a lot of ways she’s 6. But I guess that’s what it is to be a “Tween.”   She’s one of those super smart people that don’t have a whole lot of common sense… which is one of the things that drives me insane. But we’re working on that.  She is brave, out going, friendly, polite, …just to name a few.

I have  been her “Mom” for half of her life now. Which is a really weird to me sometimes. Weird that I have a 12 year old, and weird that sometimes it feels like she’s been with us forever since essentially she is my kid.  Her “Mother” aka “My Baby’s Mama” *LOL* is in and out… there are times she’s in her life and sometimes she’s out.   Which is something I will never understand. I can’t fathom how she can go months without talking her her own kid,  seeing her once a year.  I can’t stand it when she is at camp and I can’t talk to her for a week!  But anyway- she has been actually calling her on a semi-regular basis since January.  Honestly she’s talked to her more times in the last six months than she has talked to her in 6 years.  Its very sad actually.

The saddest part of the whole thing is that K gets it.  She’s wise enough in her 12 years that she knows how she is…. that she may not call for months, that she may call once a week or once a month.   She says she’s going to do a lot of things, and most of the time they don’t happen.  And now she’s finding out that she doesn’t actually listen to what she tells her when she does talk to her.

Hence the Back to school Baby Mama Drama.  I guess its really not so dramatic… it could be worse.

Baby Mama texted me a few days ago saying that she was going to send K a back to school package.  Sadly, Her mother’s idea of “being there” for her is sending her stuff that she doesn’t like or doesn’t need and will probably never use.  (Although- they have improved)  She was going to send her this “Awesome” backpack.  Mind you, we have already gotten everything K needs for school.  I offered to buy her a backpack, but she really likes the one she has and was excited about using it again- which she did tell her mother.

I showed K the picture and she said “Oh yea that’s awesome” dripping with sarcasm.  Then there were three more pictures of more back packs.. all equally as not appealing. One of them actually said “Love Kills Slowly” on it… Um.. that’s appropriate for the 12 year old to wear to school. NOT.   I was just going to let her do what ever she was going to do… but I decided to just be honest. I told her that she wouldn’t like any of them and didn’t want a new one anyway.  Surprisingly she was thankful that I told her, but she was still going to send her something.

We’ll see what actually shows up.  I’ll keep you posted.