Thursday, December 18, 2008

Merry Çhristmas!!!

I love love love Christmas. Everyone always seems to be so stressed out and I don't get it! It's beautiful! Lights everywhere - shiny shiny lights!! And here we have snow! This is a very rare occasion, this beautiful treacherous white stuff. We usually get snow once a year, and it hasn't been at at Christmas since I can't even remember when! I'm almost finished my shopping and I'm having 13 people over for dinner... I can't wait!! For the first time in 4 years, I actually get to take a vacation; 2 whole weeks off!!

I wish you all a very very very happy holiday season! Below are some simple tips to make it more enjoyable!

1. Avoid carrot sticks. Anyone who puts carrots on a holiday buffet table knows nothing of the Christmas spirit. In fact, if you see carrots, leave immediately. Go next door, where they're serving rum balls.

2. Drink as much eggnog as you can. And quickly. It's rare.. You cannot find it any other time of year but now. So drink up! Who cares that it has 10,000 calories in every sip? It's not as if you're going to turn into an eggnog-alcoholic or something. It's a treat. Enjoy it. Have one for me. Have two. It's later than you think. It's Christmas!

3. If something comes with gravy, use it. That's the whole point of gravy. Gravy does not stand alone. Pour it on. Make a volcano out of your mashed potatoes. Fill it with gravy. Eat the volcano. Repeat.

4. As for mashed potatoes, always ask if they're made with skim milk or whole milk. If it's skim, ass. Why bother? It's like buying a sports car with an automatic transmission.

5. Do not have a snack before going to a party in an effort to control your eating. The whole point of going to a Christmas party is to eat other people's food for free. Lots of it. Hellooo????

6. Under no circumstances should you exercise between now and New Year's. You can do that in January when you have nothing else to do. This is the time for long naps, which you'll need after circling the buffet table while carrying a 10-pound plate of food and that vat of eggnog.

7. If you come across something really good at a buffet table, like frosted Christmas cookies in the shape and size of Santa, position yourself near them and don't budge. Have as many as you can before becoming the center of attention. They're like a beautiful pair of shoes. If you leave
them behind, you're never going to see them again.

8. Same for pies. Apple, Pumpkin, Mincemeat. Have a slice of each. Or if you don't like mincemeat, have two apples and one pumpkin. Always have three. When else do you get to have more than one dessert?

9. Did someone mention fruitcake? Granted, it's loaded with the mandatory celebratory calories, but avoid it at all cost. I mean really, have some standards.

10. One final tip: If you don't feel terrible when you leave the party or get up from the table, you haven't been paying attention. Re-read tips; start over, but hurry, January is just around the corner!

Remember this motto to live by:
"Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming "WOO HOO what a ride!"

Friday, November 21, 2008

Totally Confused

You Americans are a complicated bunch.

While proudly waving the stars and stripes, proclaiming the USA to be the most wonderful, freest land of all, you keep on fucking with people's freedoms. I'm baffled.

At this moment, what befuddles me is Prop 8. Of course, we in Canada think it's wrong wrong wrong. Come on over here and get yerself hitched... who's the freest land of all???!!!

Everyone has their argument. I could write volumes of my own, but what totally blows my mind is how you all voted yes and now there are protests to get it gone! WTF?

And for those of you who voted yes, please please explain to me in terms that actually make sense, not that mind-bending religious bullshit, how this is any less discriminatory than banning interracial marriage?!

The religious argument is that marriage is between one man and one woman; How 'bout those Mormons??? Wow. My brain hurts.

Canada... The land of the free the brave... the true north strong and free... and the land of allowed to marry the one you love! Today I am waving my maple leaf proudly and proclaiming that I live in the wonderfulest freest land of all!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

I didn't know I was so white light!!

Which Fantasy/SciFi Character Are You?

I wanted to be cool like my blog lover MPJ, so I took this quiz... Lo and behold I too am Galadriel (although I really really thought I was cool enough to be Jean Luc Picard!). Oh well, white light powers are good too.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Happy Birthday Big Brother!

I wish today you were 43. I wish we were celebrating together, instead of being reminded that the remainder of you sits in an urn atop nannie's grave. You weren't supposed to be ashes. You were supposed to be my superhero forever.

I still hear you laugh. You still make me laugh. But today I cry. I smile through my tears, forcing myself to remember the good times, but mostly I cry.

I miss you big brother, more than you could know. I have never been able to talk to mom on this day, not for 15 years; her pain mixed with mine is too much for us both, so we just don't talk. The missing never stops. It hurts. It really really hurts.

I know God has embraced you, and that helps some.

I'm going to eat some birthday cake.

I love you forever. You are not forgotten.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008


In relationships, I have always had the luxury of time alone. I'm not really sure whether it was on purpose or not, but I seemed to pick mates who worked out of town or at the very least, had a completely different schedule than my own; this afforded me the freedom of being alone with my thoughts, or spending time with friends. I loved the diversity of having a mate, but also having single time. I'm very comfortable in my own skin, and quite enjoy my own company. In the event of an extended period of time together, I would find myself craving my alone time.

Why then, with C out of town for only one night, am I feeling so lonely? If he were just at the gym, as he usually is at this hour, I would be enjoying the snippet of alone time I get each day. Instead, I find myself not knowing what to do, and feeling sort of sad. I feel like I've misplaced something.

He called a few minutes ago. I didn't recognize the number. When I heard his voice, I actually felt that little flutter in my tummy. 5 years later, and he still makes me feel funny in that way.

On the one hand, it seems like good news; I'm on the right path. I'm marrying the right man. There's a little voice though, whispering danger, Will Rogers, danger...if I feel this disjointed by a single day apart, what does that mean? It means that this man has a lot of power. It means that I am at risk of being emotionally destroyed if I lost him. It means that I have let myself go. That's scary.

It's also exhilarating.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Someone Summing up Why I Started 'Rantings'

I was told this was what Andy Rooney said on '60 Minutes' a few weeks back: However, the ever diligent MPJ did far more research than I (I must just be gullible to have taken it at face value), so I'm not yet sure who said this, however I still give cheers to it!

I don't think being a minority makes you a victim of anything except numbers. The only things I can think of that are truly discriminatory are things like the United Negro College Fund, Jet Magazine, Black Entertainment Television, and Miss Black America. Try to have things like the United Caucasian College Fund, Cloud Magazine, White Entertainment Television, or Miss White America ~ and see what happens...Jesse Jackson will be knocking down your door. Guns do not make you a killer. I think killing makes you a killer. You can kill someone with a baseball bat or a car, but no one is trying to ban you from driving to the ball game.

(I have blogged this one plenty!) I believe they are called the Boy Scouts for a reason, which is why there are no girls allowed. Girls belong in the Girl Scouts! ARE YOU LISTENING MARTHA BURKE?

I think that if you feel homosexuality is wrong, it is not a phobia, it is an opinion. I have the right 'NOT' to be tolerant of others because they are different, weird, or tick me off.

When 70% of the people who get arrested are black, in cities where 70% of the population is black, that is not racial profiling; it is the Law of Probability.

I believe that if you are selling me a milkshake, a pack of cigarettes, a newspaper or a hotel room, you must do it in English! As a matter of fact, if you want to be an American citizen, you should have to speak English! My father and grandfather didn't die in vain so you can leave the countries you were born in to come over and disrespect ours. I think the police should have every right to shoot you if you threaten them after they tell you to stop. If you can't understand the word 'freeze' or 'stop' in English, see the above lines. I don't think just because you were not born in this country, you are qualified for any special loan programs, government sponsored bank loans or tax breaks, etc., so you can open a hotel, coffee shop, trinket store, or any other business. We did not go to the aid of certain foreign countries and risk our lives in wars to defend their freedoms, so that decades later they could come over here and tell us our constitution is a living document; and open to their interpretations.

I don't hate the rich I don't pity the poor

I know pro wrestling is fake, but so are movies and television. That doesn't stop you from watching them.

I think Bill Gates has every right to keep every penny he made and continue to make more. If it ticks you off, go and invent the next operating system that's better, and put your name on the building.

(I have blogged this plenty too) It doesn't take a whole village to raise a child right, but it does take a parent to stand up to the kid; and smack their little behinds when necessary, and say 'NO!'

I think tattoos and piercing are fine if you want them, but please don't pretend they are a political statement. And, please, stay home until that new lip ring heals. I don't want to look at your ugly infected mouth as you serve me French fries!

I am sick of 'Political Correctness.' I know a lot of black people, and not a single one of them was born in Africa; so how can they be 'African-Americans'? Besides, Africa is a continent. I don't go around saying I am a European-American because my great, great, great, great, great, great grandfather was from Europe. I am proud to be from America and nowhere else

And if you don't like my point of view... tough!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Getting Married

I was first married on May 26, 1990, at the tender age of 21 years. I remember that day with fondness, but also confusion. Try as I might, I cannot conjure up a memory of the feeling I think I should have had on my wedding day. The video shows me getting out of the car at the church, smiling, beautiful. In the background you hear a friend say "wow, doesn't she look so beautiful". My mom replied "Yeah, she looks just like a bride should for her first wedding". She was immediately horrified, but we laugh about that now. For me, that day was plagued with anxiety and in retrospect, I can hear that voice, the one that tells you you're making a mistake. At the time, I think I believed it was just 'nerves'. Part of my mixed, angry/nervous/excited feelings were due to the fact that, although I had never wanted a church wedding, I was getting married in a church. And although I had told my groom I liked his close-cut tidy beard, and "no, your mom is wrong, it's not sloppy, please don't shave it for the wedding", he appeared on that day bald-faced. My groom and I had been friends for many years, but wedding planning taught me so many things I hadn't known about him or his family, whom I had previously quite liked. He was a first generation Canadian to older German parents. I did not realize what that meant until I was to become part of the family. What I learned was that I, his bride, came a long second to his mother. Always. In fact, I was placed behind every family member; I think I fell in directly behind his youngest nephew. When he and I first talked about our wedding, we had visions of a beach and 25 close friends. However, once we were done talking with his mother, and after she'd finished scolding me for being so selfish, that 'vision' changed to a church wedding with 150 people. I knew it was wrong. I wanted to stand up for myself. I wanted him to stand up for me. But I was young and idealistic (he often referred to me as Polyanna) and I didn't realize how insidious this problem would be, or how damaging. I thought 'once we're married, things will change'. I would need a flow-chart now to illustrate the many ways that was so very wrong.

When I got MWD and left the marriage, I was determined to never again settle. Although I still care for my ex-husband, and we remain friends, I was in that situation far too long.

C and I have been together for 5 years now. We have been through at lot in that time. There have been horribly unpleasant dealings with his mentally unstable ex and endless court hearings surrounding that, and there have been growing pains; arguments, money issues, and the usual relationship stress, but every step has brought us closer together and made us stronger. Our families love each other, and he loves his mama, but I come first. Always. We are best friends who live, work and play together every single day. Time apart consists of trips to the gym, or a lunch with a friend, but other than that, we are inseparable. Our offices are a common area apart and we still use msn to talk to each other when we can't be face to face. Our assistant once commented that she didn't know who was more codependant, me or him, to which he replied, 'hey, we're happy, so who cares?'. We're not codepent...shut up!

After working out all the kinks, getting the crazy ex completely behind us, paying off lots debt and figuring out how to be a family with my three boys and my ex, we've decided it's time to get married!

Even though we've lived as a married couple for the past 4 years, I'm simply giddy with excitement! We're doing this for all the right reasons. My Polyanna days are behind me and my eyes are wide open (even though this gushyness may not seem like it). I love this man. I love him for so many reasons; he's georgeous and smart and successful, but mostly because of the way we lay in bed and talk into the wee hours. And because he lets me know that there's nothing and no one more important than me. Because he reads my mind and knows when I'm going to cry before I do, and he always asks "how was your day?". And because we laugh together every single day; he makes me laugh like no one ever has, and he says my laugh is one of his favourite things about me. I love him most of all, because he's my happy place.

In a perfect world, we'll be married on Bora Bora on my 40th birthday. We're working hard to make that happen, but it's a very expensive trip and there's so much involved.

We'll see.

p.s. I've added a donate button, just in case some really rich person stumbles on my blog and wants to help make it happen ;)

Monday, September 8, 2008

Putting My Two Cents Where It Likely Isn't Welcome

(I totally stole this picture from Frank because it's the BEST EVER!)

I have been struggling as of late, with how to articulate all the shit going on (in my head as well as in real life). Not only is it that time of year again, but things have just been weird this past while. From the sudden death of my uncle last month, to the unusual acting out of my youngest son last week, things have just been off. Although I love fall/winter, I feel unready for it, due to the miserable weather we had this summer. Everything is just wrong.

One thing I find myself obsessed with, is the American election. We have our own election coming up next month, but I can't even concentrate on who I'm going to vote for, because I'm too busy watching what's going on with our neighbours.

At first, I was just intrigued by how things would work out between Barack and Hilary. I personally thought that an Obama/Clinton or Clinton/Obama ticket would be ideal either way; to my way of thinking, as long as the Republican-War Mongering- Anti-Gay- Anti-Abortion- God Squad Machine is stopped, it really doesn't matter. Hilary and Barack have their strenghts and weakness, but they share core ideals. I was absolutely positive the American people simply would not continue with the same bullshit, with the exception of course, of the greedy little piggy, bible thumping types and the racists.

When Hilary lost the race and some people insisted that it was only because she's a woman, I thought the idea was just as absurd as the possibility that people would vote for her just because she's a woman. These were just FemmeNazis insisting they're being held down. Sure, some misogynists out there voted Hilary out, but really, there are more women in the united states than men, and what's best for the country can't possibly come down to what's between the Commander in Chief's legs can it? Of course not!! As it turns out, there are a contingent of (feminists?) who believe this to be the case. Yes, they are so concerned with their own sense of woman-ness that they might actually put every core belief aside, just to be sure there is a vagina in the White House at the end of the day. Vital issues aside, they want a woman, even a woman who's values are completely contrary to their own!

When McCain announced his pick, I laughed, out loud and hard, that he thought he could actually play the woman card and sway Hilary supporters. I found it wholy insulting that he thought smart, strong feminist women would buy into this ridiculous ploy. After all, Hilary herself is begging her supporters to back Obama; and feminist women are strong and intellegent and therefore must understand that just because someone is female does not make her best for the job!

Alas, I was wrong. Smart, 'feminist' women are buying it hook, line and sinker. Many are willing to put aside everything they believe in. They're willing to go against their fellow women for their own personal satisfaction.

I ask these women, who could very well sway the election with their need for vaginal far does this go? Do they allow a woman with no medical degree do their child's open heart surgery because she's a woman, and therefore automatically more qualified than any male doctor? Are they really willing to put us back a bazillion years by not accepting that men and women are, in fact, equal as a sex, but are not always qualified for the same positions? Do they really want their daughters to be given a hand-out, rather than a hand up?

Do they really want to continue to make their sons feel inferior because they are not girls? We are already telling our little boys that they aren't equal. We are telling them they're inferior when we say that girls are special and deserve to have all-girl clubs, and all-girl sports teams, and they should rule the world, but they as little boys, they are not allowed the same rights. They are not deserving of their own clubs. We are so special that they cannot have BOY scouts or an all-boy hockey league, or a male version of Curves. We are telling them they aren't good enough, because they aren't like us, and we can do everything they can do, only we can do it better. We are teaching our children that we don't merely want equality, we want absolute power.

To make matters worse, there are plenty of racist democrats, who will vote McCain because Obama is black. Women who vote for McCain after he played them like the fiddle he sees them as, makes them no better than racists. It makes them sexist.

I have been trying to sort out why this makes me so furious, and have come to realize that it's because I cannot do a thing to change it, yet what happens over the boarder inadvertently affects me here in Canada. I am not allowed a vote, but I must live with the consequences. I am reduced to hoping that enough smart American women see through the lies. I can only pray that smart, strong women will send the message to McCain that he can't fool them, because they are not so insecure as to fall for his evil plot to rule the world. I dearly wish that they will send the message to their little girls that we win some, we lose some, and for little boys; even if you're black, you can still be president!

Friday, August 8, 2008

Happy Surprises, or Number 1 Mom!

10 years ago, when I contracted 'mad woman's disease', I realized that I was married to the wrong man and living the wrong life. After 10 years of trying to squeeze myself into the mold that was his family, his upbringing and his origins, I just couldn't do it anymore. It was a tough choice, but for my sanity, it had to be done; so I went from stay-at-home mom to my 3 boys, to newly-single-trying-to-find-myself mom/woman. At first, I assumed that I would keep the boys and the house, and we would find a way to make due, knowing that my ex would remain a fantastic father. However, that was not to be. After 6 months of stand-off, living in the same house while separated, I realized I simply did not have the money, nor the will to fight anymore. I couldn't see dragging my poor boys through the court process, especially knowing that his and his family's money would trump whatever meager pittance I could manage to earn for the fight. So I capitulated to the crying and the raging of my ex, and let the boys remain in the home with him, while I lived in a one-bedroom basement suite. I took with me my antique rocking chair and personal belongings only; I was really starting over.

What I didn't expect was the backlash! Here I thought I was doing the right thing, not dragging my kids through the court system and allowing their father, who was the money-earner and responsible, loving dad, raise the boys ~ half-time.

Many people who knew me were openly scornful that I would be such a terrible mother not to "fight for my boys". The people who loved me most just shook their heads at my insanity, leaving behind a handsome, loving husband and beautiful children (except my mama, who stood by me and kept me feeling strong). I saw my boys every single day that first year, so how was I leaving them behind?? My ex worked out of town, so when he went to work, I would stay in the house and then go back to my home when he came back. This way the boys didn't have to go back and forth; they got to stay in the home they knew and we did the commuting. I just couldn't understand that people would see me through such bitter glasses. If I were the man in the same scenario I'd have been named father of the year! It was so hard, but I held my head high, and stood my ground, explaining that although I would have loved to have my boys all the time, this was best for them. Throughout the 10 years, our schedule with the boys has changed, and he has had them more often than me as they've gotten older.

My ex mother-in-law has openly campaigned to destroy my boys' view of their mother, often using terms far too racy for children to hear in general, never mind about their own mom. My ex never has done much about it, and I remained silent knowing that if I just kept living my truth, the boys would be able to make their own decisions. All the while, I was terrified they would think I'd abandoned them, or worse.

My boys are now teens. I love the men they're becoming. I don't get to have them as much as I'd like these days, but through the miracle of the internet, we manage to stay in close contact, even though they now live in another city. We just had them for a week-long pseudo camping trip (meaning that we stayed in a beautiful float home on the lake and the only roughing it we had to do was use a porta-potty), and we had an amazing time. C and I figure this is probably the last year we'll be able to do a family trip, since my oldest will be 18 next year, and will likely have more interesting things to do, so this trip was really important to us. It went exactly as we hoped, and we all came home feeling great.
Conversation with my boys last night:
We were all home watching a movie. The boy in the movie was upset because the last thing he'd said to his mom was 'I hate you'.

Me: That's one thing none of you has never said to me.

Youngest: What's that?

Me: None of you have ever said "I hate you" to me.

Middle (16): That's cause you're an awesome mom.

Me: You think?

Youngest (13): Yeah, that just shows you're doing a great job mom. You can proudly say 'none of my boys have ever said they hate me'.

Me: Wow guys, thanks!

Oldest (17): You didn't know you're a great mom?

Me: Well I hoped, but it sure is nice that you think so!

Youngest: You have this really great way of dealing with things so that it never gets to that point. You're fair and you make sense.

Me: quiet cause I don't want to cry.

Then the movie came back on and it was over.

I know that part of the reason they feel that way is because I'm not the full-time, every day, get on your case parent but damn, it sure feels like victory!

Monday, July 28, 2008

The Junky's Wives

View my page on The Junky's Wives Club

Sure, why not?!

You Are 7: The Enthusiast

You are outgoing and playful - always seeing the happy side to life.

You're enthusiastic and excitable. You love anything new.

Multi-talented, you do many things well... and find success easy.

You prefer to keep things light with others. Opening up is hard for you.

At Your Best: You are deeply involved in each experience. You appreciate life for what it is, and you take the time to enjoy each moment.

At Your Worst: You are greedy, self centered, impulsive, and insatiable.

Your Fixation: Gluttony

Your Primary Fear: Deprivation and pain

Your Primary Desire: To be satisfied and content

Other Number 7's: Howard Stern, Cameron Diaz, Robin Williams, Jim Carey, and Jenny Mccarthy.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Frankie, Where Are You????

My blog buddy, Frankiecon has disappeared. I don't think he realized how much his words touched me. His story was so inspiring! I went to check in on him and he's suddenly gone. It would appear he's deleted his blog and that has me concerned. It doesn't make sense, because he put a lot into his blog. I remember a past post when he said if he disappeared we wouldn't have to wonder, we'd know.... he was using.

Frank, if you happen to read this, please know that the Stagnant Artist and I are really hoping you're ok and that maybe you deleted your blog by accident or some other better explanation than that you're using again.

If you're a friend of Frankiecon and you know what happened, please let us know!

Friday, June 13, 2008


The dogger is rescued and will be with his mama Long Vowels very soon!

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Help for a Dogger (and fellow Blogger)

My good blog buddy Long Vowels
needs help rescuing this pretty girl pictured here. The problem is that Dali-dog is too far away from Vowels, who has recently wed (and we know how much money it costs to pull that off!)

The cost to get Dali to her new mama and daddy is an awful lot and we're almost there...but not quite, so if you're rescue inclined, please help! Every little bit helps...

click here to donate.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

WOW 10% Down!!!

It's official. My hard work is paying off. After almost 4 weeks, our diet guru came to do our fat tests yesterday. I started at a miserable 26.6% (which is truly hard to believe, since I wasn't even close to obese, just kind of getting round!), and C was at 20%.

I am now down to 16.6% ~ 10%??? wow! ~ and he's 14%! We're just about there after only 4 weeks!! I feel motivated, energized, sexy again, and ready for summer. And, today is cheat day....

Life is good.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

I'm melting.....

Although not as drastic as the first few days, I'm holding steady at 7 pounds and the inches are melting off. It was nice to put on pants I haven't been able to wear in a while this morning and not see a 'muffin top' hanging over the sides! Oh, and my face has these things called cheekbones! I haven't seen them in a while. I like them.

So I'm one week down and one to go before I get a cheat day. I simply cannot believe my resolve. Even with my three teen boys circling the kitchen and eating such evilness as Cheetos and Doritos, I have held firm. I even went so far as to make pancakes and bacon for them and not have any. It was really trying yesterday morning when I watched my son toast a bagel and proceed to adorn it with scrambled egg, bacon, cheese and syrup! He actually apologized to me as he walked by and slipped in my saliva that had wet the floor....this is getting really tough.

The worst part about this first two weeks is the total lack of variety. It's the same combination of foods for three days and then another same combination for three days. That and the fact that with the two of us doing this, I haven't seen much more than my kitchen in a week! I spend my days cooking, cleaning and cooking again every 2 hours. Ugh.

This picture looks just like the past me. It keeps me motivated. But lord above, what I wouldn't do for a hot fudge sundae!!!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

7 Pounds in 3 days!

Wow, this shit really does work! I'm officially 7 down and an inch all around...I'm starting to have to fight cravings though, so I need to work extra hard this next while.


Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Down 5 and counting!

5 pounds down in 2 days! Yay!!

Today is the last of my red meat days (for this rotation), thank god. Tomorrow is the start of a 3-day rotation of much more pleasant whites; chicken, fish, and I can even have a potato!

I have to admit this is getting harder to do, but as long as I keep seeing results, I'll keep at it. Clearly it's working, so who am I to complain? HA, I can always find reasons to complain, but I'm working on positive thoughts.

This is how absorbed I am in this endeavor:

Last night my mom and I had a date to go see Sylvia Browne. (For those not in the know, Sylvia is a world renowned psychic/medium, who has written umpteen books and been credited with helping police solve many crimes).

We planned to meet for dinner first, and then walk down to the theatre. Being that it was only the second day of my new plan, I was focussed on making sure only to order the sirloin steak and (no fries!) green salad. We enjoyed dinner together and then walked to the theatre, where we had front row aisle seats. We had all been given a ticket when we entered the theatre. It was explained that in order to keep things fair for all, Sylvia would later do a draw, and those whose tickets were drawn would get to ask one, and only one, question.

On stage, there was a comfy chair, a microphone, and a side table, with a small vase filled with lilies, and a fan. Sylvia came out, sat in the chair and shared her astral wisdom with the audience.

We had our pee break, and then she guided through a few minutes of meditation. This would have been quite groovy, if not for the chick 4 rows behind us who spent the entire time coughing and hacking up a lung. My meditative moments were infused with angry, practice self control moments; what I really wanted to do was stand up, turn around and tell this insanely rude germ spreading bitch to take it out the lobby. What the fuck is up with that? There are 2 thousand people trying to have a meditative moment, and it doesn't occur to her that perhaps she should take her sputum elsewhere??? The audience erupted in laughter when Sylvia finished her meditative monologue, had the lights turned up, looked right at sputum queen and said "for the love of God woman, take a Vitamin C or something would you?".

Sylvia then did the draw and sure enough, pulled my ticket! I suddenly had no idea what to ask, so I offered it to my mom. She said no, if she was meant to ask a question her ticket would be drawn. So I walked up to the microphone and asked the only question I could think of on the spot. I said, "hi Sylvia, I would like to know if my business is going to be successful", to which she replied, "oh yeah. I also see something about food". I am not in the business of food, nor am I ever likely to be in this figures she was picking up on my diet. I think I should have been more specific with my question!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Day Two

"You're so damn beautiful in the morning. I love to watch you sleep. How did I get so lucky?"

That's what I woke up to this morning. How could a girl not have a spring in her step, waking up to love like that?

And to top it off, it would appear that yesterday's weighing, measuring and stuffing my face yielded some pretty amazing results. I stepped on the scale and it said I'm already down 4 lbs ! How can that be? I got C to step on the scale and he's down 5. Unbelievable, but very inspiring!

This morning I threw my eight egg whites into the blender with some blueberries and Splenda. Drinking them, it turns out, wasn't as bad as trying to eat a giant omelet of slimy egg whites. I can do this! I've even figured out how to stay within my limits while going out for dinner with my mama tonight; we're going to see Sylvia Brown.

Today is a good day, even if it is raining!

Monday, May 12, 2008

The Beginning of Something New

I have been quite blogstipated this past while; that is, I have not been able to think of anything I felt the need to throw out there to the blogosphere.

Today though, I am starting something new.

In my past I was one of those girls everyone loved to hate. If my food didn't come in Styrofoam from some fast-food joint, or wasn't served to me by a waitress, with gravy, butter, mayonnaise and all the condiments, I didn't want anything to do with eating it. I used to despise exercise; after all, "why would I have to exert myself when I can look like this with no effort?" Pshaw!

Times have changed. I'm inching ever closer to 40 and I'm in love, happy and fulfilled for the most part (despite my previous whining, I really am!). Apparently, when you put these factors together, all in one package, it equals ZERO metabolism. In the past year, I have cut calories, cut fat, done at least 40 minutes of cardio a day, and tried Weight Watchers and starvation, and the number on the scale has continued to climb, as has the number attached to my clothing.

Today however, is a new day. I am going to blog about this daily, in order to keep myself focussed and accountable. As a typical Aries, I'm a super starter, but not such a super finisher, so hopefully this will help.

I have started a new 'eating plan'. In the past, when I've tried to 'diet', I've always failed miserably, due to my utter lack of willpower. However, the only willpower needed for this particular plan is to keep eating. Wohoo, that should be easy, right? After all, I haven't tipped the scales at 20 pounds more than I was 2 years ago by not eating! As I type this, I'm staring at my third meal of the day. It's taunting me. I can literally hear it saying "yeah, I'm gonna need you to eat me". I'm stuffed from my last meal only 2 hours ago! There is no room for cravings. I can barely find room to eat the food I need to!

Guess what I had for breakfast....??

EIGHT egg whites, a cup of oatmeal and blueberries! This is required eating. It's insane! This is a plan designed for bodybuilders to cut weight prior to competition. I'm told that when done correctly, it revs your metabolism to a point that you can eat what you want (within reason of course) after about 3 months.

Today is day one. It's extremely time consuming and labour intensive, so I can see that I'm really going to have to keep my eye on the prize. Maybe putting it out there to the universe will keep me accountable. I think I'll also hang a bikini up in my office and on my fridge...

Wish me luck!

Tuesday, April 29, 2008


From bad to worse.

I was wrong.

Happycat is NOT coming.

I simply have no energy to whine about it; that and I don't think it's of great interest to read my whining.


Tuesday, April 22, 2008


Still no word. Everything is at a standstill. I keep thinking that the longer we have to wait, the better the news will be. Happycat is waiting to strike!

Happy thoughts happy thoughts happy thoughts.....

Monday, April 7, 2008

An Open Letter (prayer) to My Karma Gods

Dear Karmic Gods;

First of all, I would like to thank you for all the wonderful things that have happened over the past year; perhaps I haven't properly done so, because it seems like it's one step forward, 10 steps back (or is it just me??).

Yes, yes, I know 'you can't have it all', 'give and take', 'good with the bad' and all that...but is it really necessary to pile on all the bad at once (o, please say this is least for now!)? Maybe you didn't notice that was happening, 'cause it's only one thing at a time, but really....come on. UNCLE!! We seriously need some relief from one thing before you pile on another ok? Please? I'm sincerely concerned for C's health right now. The stress is getting to be too much for him, I can see it; you know how he turtles and starts to pick away at himself and his bum disappears when it gets to be too much? Yeah, well he's been doing that. I even saw a bit of a tear in his eye earlier. He wiped it away, but I saw it. Along with my own stuff, his stuff directly affects me; you know how codependent I am! I'm codiexploding here!!

I am writing to you today to officially put my needs out there. Maybe my thoughts are being intercepted somehow and you haven't received my previous cries for help, so I figure if I take the time to write it down and send it to you via internet, you can take some time and see what can be done.

I have made some deposits (here's one) into my Karma bank, but it seems like since that day the cart is still tumbling, sans wheels, down the hill. Maybe you didn't receive my deposit? I got a call from her today thanking me profusely! She was very grateful and said I was a godsend... I did good. Really!

I am asking today that justice be served with regard to that whole court situation. I would also like it if you could bring someone to remove the albatross, um Mustang, from around my neck. Maybe some of the money that was taken away could somehow be returned? That sure would help a lot! Regarding his licensing....we all know that situation was completely their fault (for crying in the sink they even fired their top people over the deal), so why is he still continuing to be punished?? Maybe you missed the memo, but this has been going on since before Christmas. Granted, the firing of the wrongdoers was a great start, but if you could just take a moment to peek in, you'll see that not only did it not solve the problem, it's now created an even bigger one. And regarding my work situation....a lot more would be super! I'm ready for quite a bit more and so are the girls.

Thank you for listening and I promise to do better and try harder!! I just need that foot squishing my head to the floor to loosen a teeny bit. Then I'll be able to do better.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

All about MEEEEEEE

My real life BFF Mantramine has tagged me for this meme. It was very kind of her to appeal to my inner attention whore; because I simply love talking about me, I graciously accept!

What I was doing 10 years ago:
10 Years ago, I had just rented my own place, after 10 years of marriage to my (essentially) childhood sweetheart. I was suffering from what I have since come to term 'Mad Woman's Disease'; MWD is an affliction of many women between the ages of around 28 - 32, give or take, who wake up one day to the realization that they have been married for too long to the wrong man, are in a rut and need to completely revamp their life. Often this includes becoming the teen we weren't able to be, due to being caught up in the relationship much too young. This is when they, as in my case, become incredibly selfish and do things like have affairs. (Yes I did, and I'm deeply ashamed and sorry to this day, but I have made peace with my ex).

5 Years ago:
Once again, a crucial relationship had just ended. After 4 years enjoying the single life, I fell for the sex addict. The story of my life 5 years ago can be found here.

1 Year ago:
I had just moved my business from my home office to the office I'm in now. With the help of my wonderful C, my business had grown to the point of needing its own space. C just happened to have space in his office; here I sit today, 1 year later, typing this meme.

Yesterday I was still obsessing and stressing about the court debacle. Therefore, I really did not get much accomplished.

5 Snacks I enjoy:
  • Miss Vickies Sea Salt and Vinegar chips
  • Celery with peanut butter
  • Nuts of all kinds, particularly cashews
  • Good old cheese and crackers
  • Corn flakes (or Special K, or Cheerios)
5 Books:
Ugh, I'm simply not much for books at this stage of my life. I should be! I love reading, but I just have fallen off the book wagon, in favour of cuddling in front of the TV with C. You literary geniuses might look down your noses, but I've always loved Stephen King, even when he was pretending to be Richard Bachman.

What would I do with 100 million $$:
1 word; philanthropy

Saturday, March 29, 2008


I have this deep need for justice. I believe that when you do wrong, no good comes of it. When other people do wrong ~ especially to me or those I love ~ I simply cannot tolerate it. This past 4 years though, I have come to realize that law-breaking in certain circumstances is A.O.K., and lying, cheating, stealing, fraud and harassment are totally fine, at least in my neck of the woods.

I have touched on the subject of the mentally unstable ex-wife dealings, but I haven't really gone into it. I will now. I need to vent. It would behoove you to grab a coffee if you plan to read on.

The first 2-year period after he kicked her out:
First there was the false accusation of assault, causing some loss of his reputation and tens of thousands of $$ before it was sorted out (incidentally, his record was expunged after the judge exonerated him of any wrongdoing). Then she stole a whack of cheques from the back of his business cheque book and forged his signature to the tune of $4,000 to her. There were the constant drive-bys, phone calls, emails, sitting outside his home and public scenes (how dare he think going out for dinner should be peaceful!). Then he received a letter in the mail from the Brick, saying that 'his account' was going to be sent to collections. He did not have an account at the Brick; turns out she applied for online, and got, a Brick card in his name and ordered herself some new bedroom furniture that she couldn't be bothered to pay for. Luckily the Brick found that he was a victim of credit fraud and the account was removed. Luckily for her, she got free furniture out of the deal! Incidentally, you can no longer get a Brick card online!

When the house sold and the excess items were sold, he kindly rented a place for her to live with all of the remaining belongings, until they could come to an agreement. He would pay the rent for 4 months, so that she could get herself together. During this time, he lived with his parents. When the 4 months were up, he told her it was time to pay her own rent and make her own way. The condo was rented in his name, because she had shitty credit. And since he paid the rent, and his things were there, he had his own key. His intention had always been for her to move out and he would move in when all was settled. A week after he told her to start paying her own rent, he hadn't heard back from her, so he stopped by the condo. He opened the door to an empty, filthy apartment. She had taken every last thing. The kicker here was that his lawyer told him not to press charges for any of these offenses, because if she got a criminal record and couldn't work, he'd have to pay her alimony. ugh! The lawyer suggested he get the divorce over with and then press charges. The problem with that was her refusal to divorce him.

The 4 years we've been together:
When we started dating and she found out, things got even more bizarre. She completely lost her mind, phoning 20 times a day, driving by, sitting outside, threatening suicide, threatening murder, and she had a deeper resolve to stay legally bound. She lived with her boyfriend of 2 years at this point (the same man she'd begun fucking just prior to being booted), but still she wouldn't move on. He decided that he would have to push the matter and his lawyer arranged for court. We had to wait 8 months, but at least that would be the end of it, right? WHEATever!

During the next while, we began to document every phone call, email, drive-by, and harassment of friends, in the hopes of having the police interfere and make her leave us alone. They did eventually arrest her and warn her to stop, and there was blissful peace for a short while. This time gave us the ability to work on us, without the chaos, and it was wonderful.

Our day in court finally came (which actually turned out to be 5 days in court because her lawyer had fired her and she decided representing herself would be a great idea). He was the plaintiff and was asking for nothing, other than the return of his very expensive stereo. She was the defendant and was asking for $2,000 a month alimony. The week was unbelievably ridiculous, but in the end, the beautiful moment was the judge's immediate decision. When summations were finished, he took off his glasses, leaned forward and said "Ok, here's my decision". My heart started to race. These things are supposed to take time. You give your evidence, the judge reviews, and then you get the news by mail. No, not this time. This time a miracle happened.

He said "First of all, the defendant's claim is dismissed. The defendant is to return the stereo to Mr. B....", and he then went on to verbally spank her for 20 minutes. In so many words he called her a manipulative liar, who should be ashamed of herself for wasting the court's time with her ludicrous demands and accusations (her entire case was built around her accusation that he had been abusive, controlling and mean, and he should have to pay her money). The judge told her he believed that no abuse had ever taken place and Mr. B was, in his opinion, a fine man doing his best to pick up the pieces of the financial destruction she had caused.

She isn't very smart. When the judge finished, she turned to C's lawyer and said, "what just happened", to which the lawyer replied, "you lost!". The icing on the cake; the judge then ordered her to pay the entire court costs. Craig started to cry great big tears of happiness. She had spent the last 3 years telling anyone who would listen what a horrible, abusive person he was, and that he had left her destitute. Through his tears he told me that finally he felt vindicated. We hugged and cried and laughed and felt free. What we didn't realize at that moment was that those court costs, in the amount of $25,000, first had to be paid by us, and it would then be our job to collect payment from her. UH OH!

Shortly after the divorce was finalized, the fraud department of our local police department put together all the information regarding her prior activities and submitted it to Crown Counsel in order to press charges. The devastating answer we received was that because it had been longer than 18 months since all of the crimes had taken place, charges could not be laid, although the woman I spoke to assured me they would have loved to do so. She was getting away with theft and fraud scott free!! We were so upset, but still feeling vindicated from the court win, we decided to focus on getting our money back (we had paid the $25,000 and it was time to collect).

I won't go into the many appearances before Registrars and Garnishee orders, but suffice to say there were many. Also in this time frame, Crown Counsel saw fit to slap a peace bond on her, so that she couldn't continue to harass and threaten us. She had recently been discharged from bankruptcy and was now working a in a job making really good money. The final appearance before the Registrar got us a $500/month order for payment. When the Registrar handed down the order, she looked at her and asked, can I go bankrupt?

She did file bankruptcy (for the second time in 2 years!) 2 weeks later, claiming poverty. C was the majority Creditor and he was appointed Inspector. We have learned a lot about bankruptcy this past year. The most important lesson learned is that although legally, the Trustee's duty is actually to the Creditor, most work for the Bankrupt, providing a "Fresh Start". As the Inspector, C reviewed her income and expense statements each month, and when he found numerous discrepancies he got the Superintendent of Bankruptcy involved. The Superintendent flew to our city and examined her under oath, telling us that if she was found to be lying it would be considered a criminal act. We reviewed the answers to the questions and provided proof of her deception. Nothing was done. We had evidence of money being hidden, the fact that she worked a second job for cash, and was providing false income and expense statements. Nothing was done. A co-worker came forward, providing even more evidence of her deception. Nothing was done. The Superintendent, upon reviewing bank statements provided by her bank, found $6,000 in undeclared income. Although he told us these are criminal offenses, authorities were not called. We just couldn't understand why they weren't doing anything and when we posed the question, the answer was always vague and left us feeling like we'd bee duped. When you're a second time Bankrupt here Carnardiar, you must apply to a judge for discharge, rather than the automatic one you get the first time you file. The Superintendent did tell me that the judge had the option to either discharge her, keep her in bankruptcy for a longer period of time, or annul the bankruptcy ~ YES! that's the one we want. He told us that annulment could happen if for instance, the Bankrupt had been solvent at the time of filing. Yeah, that's the one. We'll go for that one. Annulment would mean that she would still have to pay the $25,000 and she would have gone bankrupt a second time for not. And why wouldn't he grant it? She had been paying $1,000 per month into her bankruptcy, when the original Order For Payment was only $500 a month. She had lied lied lied and hid money that we found. We had emails from her saying she'd file bankruptcy a second time before paying us a penny. We had co-workers telling us how she was hiding money. This was clearly an airtight case! The Superintendent and the Trustee were finally seeming to be on our side at the 11th hour, after much pressure. The time came for her to seek discharge; the Trustee and Superintendent obtained a court date and submitted documentation for the judge's perusal, showing the found money, undisclosed assets and generally poor conduct by the Bankrupt. They suggested we submit documentation stating our case as well, which the Trustee kindly offered to do for us. We put together our extensive and damning evidence and the Trustee took it to the courthouse.
They suggested we have a contingency plan, just in case the judge chose not to grant our wish, and we decided that 3 more years in bankruptcy would be the back-up plan.

Yesterday was the big day. We walked into court, heads held high, ready for the victory that was ours. She had lawyered up, but that was of no concern to us. Our case was clearly of the open and shut variety. When we were all assembled, the Trustee, the Superintendent and C introduced themselves. The Trustee and the Superintendent informed the judge that she had failed to disclose assets, had hidden money, and had underreported her income. They informed the judge that their recommendation was to be 25 more months into bankruptcy, with a set payment of $425/month, with no reporting of income etc. WHATTHEFUCK?? This was not what we discussed!! Thrown off guard, C stood up to have his turn and the judge asked him what he was doing there. HUH? C said he was there to have his rights revived and sought a judgment of annulment, to which the judge said a what? ohmygod, this is not looking good, I was thinking. The Superintendent stood up and explained to the judge that an annulment is in fact possible if he deemed fit. I could see Craig was a bit shaken, but he plodded on. When the judge asked why he thought this should happen, he said "you should have the documentation and evidence we submitted 2 months ago". The judge held up a bunch of papers bound together and said you mean these pieces of paper I have here?". "Yes, those" replied C. The judge then informed him that this package had not been sworn in and submitted as evidence, and were therefore merely "pieces of paper" to him. Sucker punched! I saw the colour remove itself from C's flesh and my instinct was to jump up and hold him, wrap him in a cocoon and make it better. It had been a stressful week, with the loss of his beloved granny 2 days prior, and tremendous work stress. I could see this last straw start to weaken his knees. The judge did suggest that C could be sworn in to submit evidence, which he did, but by then he was too befuddled and because we were told the judge would have everything, our exhibits weren't prettily tabbed for easy access. After submitting one or two 'pieces of paper', her lawyer accused him of phoning and harassing her at her workplace, trying to ruin her career. WHAT?? This was turning into a goddamn circus. I saw every bit of fight leave him. He later said he felt like he'd trained for the champion boxing match, only to find that his coach didn't bring his gloves on the big day. The weight of everything that had gone on of late decided to settle itself on his shoulders right that moment. More ridiculousness ensued and then it was over. The lawyer suggested she was a good Bankrupt who should be allowed to 'move on', and the Trustee and Superintendent stood by their 2-year plan. The one saving grace was that the judge at the end decided to reserve judgment and said "in all fairness to Mr. B, I will review his documentation and you'll be notified of my decision by mail". He appeared to take pity on C, realizing that he'd been bamboozled.

He's so mad at himself. He's embarrassed and angry and frustrated. I'm not sure why we ever trusted the Trustee to submit the documents properly in the first place, but we did, and that's just another lesson learned.

Maybe, just maybe, the judge will still grant our wish.....?

I'm drained.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Damn it! It's happening. I've started to become cynical about this (previously) most special of days. This day on March 25, 1969, I came to be a whole, live real human being. Since that day, every March 25 of every year, I am a princess. It is my birthday. I love love love birthdays. I love to make you feel special on your day of becoming, and I like it even more when you make me feel special on mine. Today though, I have lowered expectations, and I'm not feeling special at all. I feel irritable and pissy instead. I'm pissy that I had to get up and come to work today (well, I suppose I could have stayed home, but I didn't). I'm pissy that I've been eating so much lately that missing kickboxing class was not optional. I'm pissy that this is the last year that I get to be a 30-something MILF. As of next year, he's going to have to trade me in for two 20's! To top it off, his grandmother has the audacity to stroke out and be on the brink of death, causing us all to feel great sadness; is it selfish of me to wish for her to hang on at least one more day, so that my special day is not forever synonymous with the loss of a loved one? I do love her dearly and I'm very pleased we had her over for her favourite dinner so recently, and she is after-all 96, so she's lived a great life, but I just need her to hang on one more day....for me.


Sunday, March 16, 2008

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Some days are shitty for a reason

Things have been going so well lately that I forgot to make a deposit to my karma bank.

5 years ago, when I hit my lowest of low points and was living on my friend's couch, unable to procure lucrative employment, I swore that I would never take advantage of a good situation again. Recently, I almost forgot that promise to myself. Today, however the gods sent me a message, as they're apt to do.

Today was a bad day. We lost a huge amount of money and we lost our very important support staff member (who actually was the reason for the loss of money) almost simultaneously. I awoke feeling happy to start my day and within 2 hours, it all went sideways. The wheels came off the cart and the cart went into the ditch.

He spent the day putting out virtual fires and I spent the day being almost paralyzed with disappointment, but miraculously I did manage to get a few things done. As the day wore on, realization crept in; this is one of those pivotal events that were meant to take place, but without a catalyst it wasn't happening. Hadn't we been saying for the past 6 months that we couldn't tolerate any more screw-ups? Hadn't we been talking about how to gently let her know that it was indeed time to retire? Hadn't we known that coddling her wasn't allowing her to move on to the next phase of her life? Almost simultaneously we looked at each other and said, "the more I think about it, the more I realize this is a good thing".

I took a deep breath and told the universe what I need. Within 20 minutes, I received a positive response. Whew, ok, that's one thing that might be solved.

Just as the day was wrapping up, while fighting my deep desire to turtle, hoping that if I close my eyes and ignore today, tomorrow will be better, my phone rang. A potential client! YAY, maybe we can recoup some of today's loss....or....? As she asked questions and I answered, it became apparent that this potential client was not in a financial position to take advantage of my services. She sighed, saying "if only...." There was something in her voice. It was desperation. She really really needs my help, but she just can't afford the cost. The fact that people don't want to pay for services happens. It's business. But this time, I could hear in her voice that it wasn't about want.

So here I was, having lost this money, having my own issues to deal with, talking to another woman with issues and needs; the difference was that I could fix her situation. So I made a very unsound business decision in that moment. "Look" I said, "I can hear in your voice that you really do need my help and I understand you can't afford the cost, so I'm going to do something I've never done". I went on to come up with a solution for her that she can afford, but that doesn't put me any farther ahead. I thought about it and I said "I only ask 2 things; One, you agree not to tell anyone you got a freebie, and two; you spread the word about our wonderful service to your colleagues". She sighed and I could hear the shaking in her breath. "Thank you so much", she said "I just can't tell you how much this means to me. I'm at the end of my rope".

That felt good.

Friday, February 22, 2008

MPJ the Muse

MPJ and I have become very good online bffs, even though we have some rather differing views on many things; although we both love Hilary and hair-twirling so it's all good. It's more a Yin/Yang thing, the way I see it.

MPJ has recently posted her 'parenting manifesto' and thinking about how much she believes her thoughts differ from mine, as per my earlier post on irresponsible parents , she was eager to see my response. I'm happy to oblige, but the comment box would have been jammed full, so I thought it more appropriate to post my response. I don't absolutely disagree with Mary, but I do think differently about many things.

First of all disclaimer/disclosure; my views are based on the average, everyday kid, notwithstanding neurological or behavioral issues/disorders, which clearly are exceptions.

My experience with the issue comes from having 3 fantastic teenage boys, despite coming from a 'broken home' (and at one time, 3 boys under the age of 4 years, so there was definitely a need for some order and control, in order for me to retain any sanity). I was also once a ~ firm but lovingly parented ~ child myself after all. As well, I am the second-oldest (by 6 years) of 13 cousins in a very close-knit family, so I did my fair share of helping out with child care.

I do agree with Mary in that ultimately, we are who we are, and nothing I've done to this point has made my boys' basic personalities what they are today; and those personalities differ so much that you would think they grew up in completely different homes. I do take credit however, for their deep compassion, consideration and knowledge of right from wrong. When I was stopped in the grocery store with my 5 month old baby and 2 and 3 year old boys, to be told that it was "so refreshing" to see such nicely behaved little ones, I happily took credit (after all, the first time they tried such sillyness as behaving in an unruly manner or demanding items from the shelves, they were swiftly and surely shown the boundaries). They knew that if they behaved nicely, there would be a sucker or a Kinder Surprise for them to enjoy on the long drive home.

It is a fact that the most formative years are from birth to 5 years old. If we do not teach our children what is and what is not appropriate behaviour in that time, society does end up dealing with the fallout. Now please do not mistake that I mean one must do bodily harm to 'get control'. Often times, a stern word and an unpleasant consequence is plenty enough.

I was parented and did parent my boys in the old-school manner, when poor behaviour was simply not tolerated; spare the rod, spoil the child and all that. It was not 'who we were' or 'what were were supposed to be doing' to act out in pubic, back-talk, be impolite, or run rampant through department stores. There was a 'time and a place' for running, jumping, playing etc., and it was absolutely unacceptable to be disruptive or disrespectful, particularly in other peoples' homes or public places. This does not mean that I didn't misbehave, as children are apt to do. I was just like a child that way. I pushed boundaries and I was put back in my place.

Parenting, to me, is sort of like running a pack. I am alpha dog. I lead by example. It is my job as a parent to socialize my children appropriately. It is not acceptable for me to allow my children to do as they please, such as bothering one's things in their home or ruining some poor unsuspecting stranger's serenity while they're trying to accomplish some daily task such as shopping, simply because they are children. Left to their own devices, with no discipline or guidance, all children will behave like wild animals; they simply don't know better unless taught.

When my first boy was born, my aunt gave me the book Parenting Isn't for Cowards. This is an awesome book that advocates a stern, loving style of parenting. It is written by child psychiatrist James Dobson. One interesting story in the book covered boundaries, and tells of a study of a group of kindergarten children; when the movement toward children's freedom started to unfold, this particular school removed the fence surrounding the field, so as not to hem in these poor repressed beings. What they found was that these children no longer used the entire field for their play. Suddenly, they were huddled in the centre of the field, not venturing to the outer parameters. The conclusion drawn by this study was that children need clear boundaries to feel safe. Of course there is much much more to it, but that story serves as a metaphor. James Dobson also advocates corporal punishment in certain circumstances, and talks of the confusion children feel with no clear idea of what's expected of them, particularly when there is a lack of consistency.

As in any relationship, the parent/child relationship is about finding a balance that works in that unique situation. My boys were not all parented exactly the same, because they are not the same. My interactions with them were tailored to their individual personalities. The message was the same for each child, but the delivery was not necessarily the same when it came to discipline; my oldest boy was spanked, whereas my youngest never was.

Today there is an epidemic of confused, overindulged people, who believe that the world owes them something. This is absolutely due to irresponsible parenting (and schooling). They're stunned to find that they're no more special than the next person and they actually have earn respect in the real world. They really can and do fail!!? There is an epidemic of bullying and swarming, the likes of which have never been seen, and the worst of it is that it is now the girls who are doing a whole lot of the violet bullying these days (anything boys can do girls can do better right?). There is absolutely no doubt that children today are far more unruly than the children of past generations. This is direct result of the fact that too many parents simply aren't up to the task of properly disciplining their children; it is more important that little Johnny be happy than it is for him to have to be polite and well behaved. Parents have lost sight of the fact that Johnny can be happy and well behaved, and Johnny does not want you to be his buddy. He needs a parent who knows what it means to have to say "this hurts me more than it hurts you".

I just have to have my say on co-sleeping, because it is a pet peeve of mine. I personally believe the marital bed is just that. It is a place where husband and wife (or whatever other variation of spouses) have their own place. It is a place of lovemaking, closeness and intimacy that simply should not involve children (you do what you like, but my kids have wonderful, cozy beds of their own). Children are special and important, but we cannot forget that our spouses are special and that relationship requires love and nurturing every bit as much as the relationship with your children.

Thanks MPJ for giving me another reason to espouse my beliefs! Loving you....

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Five of My Charming Idiosyncrasies

A while back, I read MPJ's list of sensory issues
and since she was too tired to tag anyone, I took it upon myself to tag me. I don't really have sensory issues, but it occurred to me that I do have some oddities. Here are a few:

1. I twirl my hair. Constantly. I roll it and twirl it and twist it into knots. There are special areas of my hair that are favourites ~ somehow, softer silkier hair than the rest ~ to manipulate. It is somewhat compulsive and quite feverish when I'm stressed or angry. When I'm happy, relaxed or merely thinking, it's slow lazy twirl. My man tells me he can place my mood by the manner in which I play with my hair. When I was about 12, my rather mean stepmother told me that it was a sign of schizophrenia, which had me terrified; this leads me to number;

2. I am frightened of mental illness, particularly of suffering from mental illness. In the city that I live, there is an abundance of mentally ill 'street urchins'. Our weather is so beautiful it attracts the homeless, who would obviously rather sleep outdoors in a warm climate. Certain areas of town make me nervous because of the mentally ill, and the drugged out. This lack of control makes me feel extremely uncomfortable. Speaking of lack of control;

3. I am a control freak; my chronic anxiety is surely the worst symptom of this. My anxiety attacks take the form of feeling as though I'm going to 'lose it', perhaps start crying or screaming, or maybe light myself on fire and run through the streets, thereby making a 'fool of myself', which would be a fate worse than death. In the past, my control issues would have me obsessing over my home, making sure it was clean enough that you could eat off any surface (including bathroom surfaces) at any given time, if you so chose to do such an odd thing. I had this fear that a neighbour or friend might stop by and see that there was some form of mess in my home and they might feel I was not controlling my environment appropriately. This was no small feat with 3 boys under the age of 4, a large dog and a husband who enjoyed clutter! I've come a long way with that one. (um, I suppose this is a mental illness isn't it??)

4. I need to sleep on a certain kind of pillow. I simply cannot sleep without my viscoelastic pillow. When traveling, we actually take our pillows with. For years, I would wake up with aching ears from laying on my pillow. I would 'fluff' my pillow, turn over and go back to sleep several times a night. It wasn't until I was with my current mate that I finally learned the reason for this, and that all are not created equal in the world of ears. C is a former professional UFC fighter. His ears are fine, but I noticed that some of his friends who also fought, have these messed up 'cauliflower' ears. It turns out that the more cartilage you have, the worse they get damaged by being smashed into all the time. So this is why my ears hurt. I have more cartilage than your average person. My ears are snugged up all tight and taut against my head, solid but for the lobe. If I were to take up 'grappling', they would be ruined. Good thing I'm not interested in that idea.

5. Speaking of sleeping; I cannot abide pilly sheets. My sheets must be washed every 2nd or third day and they must be silky soft, with nary a mark or a wrinkle. I actually used to iron my sheets, but I don't do that anymore; a friend of mine saw me ironing my sheets once and she reacted as though I was rather crazy, so I stopped.

I'm going to stop at 5, because I'm starting to be concerned by how strange I actually seem to be!

Friday, February 15, 2008

I Love Scout

I have been completely vacant of ideas for posting recently. I want to post really interesting, funny, wise, thought-provoking material that makes me seem smart and makes you love me, but I just can't seem to think of anything (I'm sorry I'll try harder and do better). So much going on and so much time in the talky box (hehe, don't mention the box!).

Scout gave me this award today though and I couldn't wait to post it!!! I love Scouter! She's the awesomest of all my blogger bff's and this award is so touching. Even though it was given to all of us, I still feel special.


Now I'm going to go gt ready for our romantic weekend getaway. I'm so excited! Tomorrow is snowboarding and then dinner and then on Sunday....massages. wohooo!!!

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Part I

“You have to leave. I can’t live this way any longer. Maybe if you get some help, we can talk about it, but I just won’t live like this any longer”. After 5 ½ years of marriage and yet another argument, John decided it was time to end the marriage. John is a financial consultant and his business was set up in the addition they had just added to the home, so it made sense that she be the one to vacate.

The prior 3 years had been very unhappy ones. For a long while, he made allowances for Barb’s behaviour, due to her illness; she had endometriosis and was unable to carry any of her multiple pregnancies to term. She desperately wanted a family, but for a long time she was in and out of hospital, until they finally did a hysterectomy because she was either to live with chronic pain or have the surgery. He understood why sex was not a part of their marriage during this time; after all, she was in pain. However, 2 Years post-hysterectomy, things weren’t getting any better. In fact, things began to get much worse. Sex was still non-existent because she was apparently still in pain. She laid on the sofa the majority of the day every day, watching TV. She refused to work, even after John had put her through Esthetics School and set up a salon for her in the home (her dream, she had said, was to have her own nail salon). She claimed to be depressed, due to the fact that she couldn’t have children, but was unwilling to seek counseling or any sort of help for the depression. In a desperate attempt to lift her spirits, he took her to the local Honda dealership and told her to pick out whatever she wanted. She drove home in her brand new, fully loaded SUV. It didn’t help and he quickly realized that nothing he did was going to make a difference. She was angry and began acting irrationally, blaming him for her health problems; she would later tell a judge that John had made her have a hysterectomy. She wasn’t too depressed or in too much pain however to get off the couch, cake on the make-up, don revealing clothing and go out to the bar with her girlfriends until 4 & 5 a.m., 3 – 5 nights a week. Her behaviour was becoming ever more erratic and irrational. He caught her in lying about her whereabouts often and began to hear rumours that she was having an affair. She seemed to make a point of starting fights regularly. Usually, the complaints were that John was not supplying her with enough money. It seemed that when she wasn’t either lying on the couch or out at the bar with her friends, she was shopping. She just couldn’t comprehend that the money was running out. John’s business had suffered while he was helping Barb deal with her illness; often times, she would wake him at 2 and 3 in the morning to take her to hospital because she was in pain. They had just recently renovated the house, he had bought her the new vehicle, and she absolutely refused to work. Something had to give, but she just couldn’t see it. On this day, April 28, 2002, Barb was once again angry because he refused to give her more money. He’d finally had enough and told her it was time to go. Her response was “if you don’t take me back I’ll go to the police and have you arrested”. Due to medications Barb was on, she bruised easily and she often referred to her bruises as ‘trophies’. He insisted she leave and began putting some of her belongings ~ suitcases full of clothes etc. ~ into the garage. Barb called her sister Linda, who came to help her remove her things. Barb and Linda spent the next hour gathering Barb’s belongings, all the while yelling obscenities at John, making sure to damage a few of his belongings in the process. A few hours after they left, while John was bar-b-q’ing his dinner, 6 police officers arrived at his front door. When he answered the door, an officer said “Mr. Harper, you’re under arrest for spousal abuse.” Barb had made good on her threat. They sent 6 officers to arrest John because Barb made a point of explaining that he is a big man, who was once a professional fighter. John stood there mouth agape, stunned. He was only wearing white shorts (intended only for home lounging), a t-shirt and no shoes. A male officer stepped forward and turned him around in order to place the cuffs around his wrists. “Can I at least get my shoes?” he asked. “No” was the reply. Two officers steered him toward the vehicle making sure to bang his head on the way into the car. The cuffs had been placed so tight that John’s hands were blue when they arrived at the police station 10 minutes later. He was shocked, numb; he had always been taught that you never lay a hand on a woman unless you’re invited and certainly would never have hurt his wife. This had to be a mistake. Once at the station, they read John his rights and proceeded with the booking process. John had never had his fingerprints taken before and didn’t know the procedure. The officer kept squishing his fingers down on the paper, unable to get a proper print. He bent his fingers back and threatened to charge John with resisting arrest. John insisted he had no intention of resisting, to which the officer replied “go ahead, hit me, I won’t do anything. Take your best shot”. This is so absurd, John thought. How can the police behave this way? It turns out that BC law states that an accused abuser is guilty until proven innocent. A woman simply needs to suggest that she has been somehow abused and that is enough for the police to make an arrest. John spent 4 hours at the police station, answering questions and going through the process. He asked to make a phone call. He was told he was not allowed to use the phone. When he was released 4 hours later, he walked barefoot and humiliated across the street to a pay phone and called a friend, who came to pick him up.

The next day John hired a lawyer, had a legal separation agreement drawn up and braced himself for the fallout of these false charges. He was told to expect a long and expensive road ahead. The consequences of Barb’s actions could potentially have catastrophic effects; he could lose his business. His responsibility was to report these charges to his licensing bodies.

The next day Barb showed up at the house. When John told her to leave, she walked to the middle of the driveway and just stood there sobbing, yelling up at the house about how sorry she was for going to the police station. She had gone to the police station, she later said, because a friend told her she should ‘open a file on John, just in case things got ugly’, which made no sense, but Barb had been doing a lot of things that made no sense, so this was par for the course he thought. According to the story she later told John, while sobbing and repeating how sorry she was, was that she was standing at the front desk of the police station, asking if she could ‘open a file’ on her husband, who had asked her to leave their home earlier in the day. She told John that while she and Linda were moving her things, she had sustained some small bruises on her arms. She had worn a short sleeve shirt to the police station, and they noticed her bruises. Barb claimed that they asked her if the bruises had been a result of abuse by John. She said that she told them no, but they wouldn’t believe her and set out to arrest him. BC law allows for the police to lay charges, even if a ‘victim’ says otherwise, ostensibly to protect the ‘victim’.

The next year would be spent fighting the false charge of spousal abuse, among the other chaos resulting from John’s decision to end his marriage…

Monday, January 21, 2008

I Have A Dream

I feel like this little girl. She looks like she's not very experienced at story writing, but she's eager to put some words on that paper.

I have often thought that my life experiences would make an interesting book, and I even made attempts to write about them now and then. The thing is, I'm not quite sure how! So I've stopped and started too many times to count.

Then I met him. His story is interesting too; especially interesting, is the story of our life together ~ not the day to day stuff, but the background stuff we've been battling for the past 4 years. We're close to the end of a rather important round in this fight, which is making me feel very inspired.

My last post about coming out the other side of a bad situation was a good gauge for me. It helped me to see that maybe, just maybe I'm right. People might actually be interested in this.....drama. So I'm going to embark on a new journey of writing. I think I might post bits and pieces of the story and get some feedback from you, my few but very valued readers.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Gratidude and Destiny

A recent post on our super secret blog, along with some subtle signs in my personal life have has inspired me to post about destiny, gratitude and coming out the other other side of a bad situation.

I'm sorry, this is a long one.

5 years ago, I took a chance. I quit my 'good government job' and started my own business. I like to leap then look... it's just how I roll. Fortunately, the government believed in my little business venture and they gave me a small grant to live off for the first year of business, whilst I attended some of their mandatory courses; pretty good trade thought I. Arrogantly, I assumed that because I had a great idea, at least in my mind, it would sustain me financially. Silly girl. At this point in time, I was dating someone I really thought was the love of my life. We had so much fun together and we never fought. It was almost 5 years after leaving my rather volatile husband and he was a breath of fresh air. He wasn't much for self-employment though, so not as supportive as he could have been, but he did try. Sometimes. He moved in with me after 6 months of dating, at which point he suggested that we build a house. So we did. We built a house and moved in on Nov. 29, 2002. I was full of hope for the future that morning, but by early evening, I had a very funny anxious feeling that I might have made a mistake. We were moving pretty fast after all. We had only been together 9 months, and his demeanor seemed to instantly change. That fast. From morning till night. The air around us felt weird and strained. I felt like Alice, having just crawled through the rabbit hole. He assured me it was just the stress of moving. On November 30th, the day after moving in, he took my hand and led me outside. He turned me to face the house and put his arms around me from behind. "Thank you for building such a beautiful home for us. I'm so happy to have you" he whispered in my ear. He had left all the details of the house to me, saying that as long as I was happy that's all that mattered. When I went back in there were a dozen roses on the kitchen table with a beautiful card; he was always so charming, romantic and thoughtful. It seemed almost too good to be true. I was glad he liked the house and momentarily felt relief.

The next day though, I just didn't feel right again. He told me to stop worrying, but he was suddenly just not 'that guy' anymore. He seemed preoccupied and emotionally unavailable. My spidey senses kicked in. No matter how many times I told myself I was wrong, I couldn't shake it. I became sullen, suspicious and moody. I just wanted him back but the more I wanted him, the farther he went. I was suddenly chasing the dream of the man I thought he was. Then it happened. Just one month after moving into the house, only two days after a strained Christmas, we got into a totally minor spat. I asked him why he was suddenly so different. His answer; 'I'm sorry, I love you, but I just don't feel that spark anymore. I'm not in love with you'. WHAT? Excuse me???? 3 1/2 weeks ago, he gave me flowers with a card telling me how excited he was to start our new life together and now he's suddenly lost the spark? I was devastated. Crushed. What the fuck was I going to do now. I'm embarrassed now to think of how I broke down, but I just could not comprehend where to go from here. I had given up my home and many of my very nice things because he bought us newer and better things for our new and better home; things like furniture, a vacuum, dishes... things I would kind of need, but the new things were really his, since he paid for them, so what was I going to do? I wasn't making much money yet! FUCK! The home I gave up was such a beautiful place and the rent was totally doable, plus I was allowed to have my dog there. How was I going to afford a house that would let me have my dog and buy new things??? All while essentially being unemployed, with my grant quickly running out. This was an incomprehensible disaster. I did the best I could to gather my pride, put on a brave face and try to work through it. We lived around each other for a week. I acted strong and asked him to pick me up boxes when he was out, packing more things every day. He was not going to see me be the slobbering heartbroken fool that I really was damnit!!!! 2 weeks later he asked me to take him back. He cried and said he was so sorry he just got 'scared'. I took him back. A lot more gut wrenching moments took place before we broke up again and I finally moved out. In April I managed to find a really adorable character home that would let me have my doggie, so I moved in. The rent was a bit steep, but beggars can't be choosers so I just closed my eyes and prayed for a miracle contract to come along before my grant was gone.

That miracle did come, in the form of a client who wanted me to give up any existing clients and work solely for him. I did. The ex and I spoke only occasionally, when we had to take care of unfinished business. Three months after moving into my new place, and just as I was finally getting used to the quiet, he called me one night. He asked if I wanted to have dinner with him. I couldn't help it. I still loved him. The dream of him still existed. I said yes. We slept together. He asked me to take him back. I did. He asked if we could just take it slow. I said yes. One day I came home from work and there was a beautiful bouquet of flowers with a card professing undying love...God, I am so ashamed at how low I sunk, allowing him to play with my heart the way he did. Believing him when he told me he loved me but just needed time, totally ignoring my guardian voice screaming danger Will Rogers, DANGER!!

On August 30th, 2003 we were sitting at his house (the house I designed, my dream house). The phone rang. He looked at it and put it down saying he didn't know who it was. My guardian voice wouldn't let me turtle anymore. I demanded to know who it was that called. He insisted he didn't know. He said maybe it was for Dave, his recently acquired roommate. I simply didn't believe him. I wouldn't let it go. I read the barely perceptible beads of sweat forming in his receding hairline. I was like a dog with a bone, gnawing for the truth. "Who was it", "I don't know!". I picked up the phone "Fine, there's voicemail, I'll just check it".

"FINE, I'll tell you, just stop already". It turns out that night, the night he left the flowers with the card professing the love, after he called me to say goodnight, telling me he was going to bed early, he went out drinking with Dave. For reasons still unbeknownst to me, he called an escort when he got home. They liked each other more than just on and escort/john level and he gave her his number. I won't even begin to try to explain how this made me feel, what I went through, or how I behaved after this news, but suffice it to say that my self esteem had sunken to a level I can't now comprehend. That girl is, thank God, no longer me. We broke up for good.

A week later, in my extreme and irrational depression, combined with anger at my 'boss' (client), I fired me. I quit the client. Little did I know that another job would not soon follow. My grant ran out. I was cataplectic. I couldn't even begin to think about how to get my business off the ground again. My life was spiraling completely out of control. I was suddenly 'overqualified', or there were just too many applicants for everything I applied for. I thanked God my kids lived with their dad at that point. I was useless. I cried all the time. I spent endless hours on the phone with my real life bff Mantramine, trying to get her fix me. She patiently walked with me through my depression. She talked to me softly and lovingly for hours. I don't think she really knows how much she helped me. That's my fault. I don't know how to express my gratitude for her love and patience with a crazy, fucked up whacked out mess. I had two other bff's, one of whom paid my rent one month, and who would come by often. I'm sure now, that they were on suicide watch! It didn't get any better anytime too soon. I eventually had to leave my home because my friend couldn't keep paying my rent, nor could I. My things went into storage and I was officially homeless. Another of my bff's kindly took me in, no questions asked and no expectations. I slowly tried to rebuild my shattered life. I was a homeless woman, driving a nice car, wearing nice clothes, with nice things in storage. I was wandering Wonderland trying to figure a way back through the rabbit hole. That Christmas Mantra lent me $100 to buy my kids some presents, cause I was at that point on welfare and couldn't afford to. I cannot express the pain and humiliation of being me at that time.

Two months later I finally got a ridiculously menial job that paid just barely above minimum wage and oddly, rather than feel the humiliation of working a job 'beneath me', I saw light at the end of the tunnel. My manager at that job made me feel worthy and important. Slowly, ever so slowly the tides began to shift. I worked 7 days a week, sometimes 12 hour days and managed to move into a ridiculously small apartment in a shifty area of town, but not before having to sacrifice my dog. I simply couldn't afford a home where I could have him, so he went with a friend of a friend. At least I had a home. I still had my cat. That was something. By this point I had been dating my current man for a very short while. He was going through his own manner of hell, still dealing with a mentally unstable ex wife after 2 years of separation. We were kindred, broken spirits come together in an extreme time. He never made me feel bad about my situation, always seeing the better in me. He encouraged me to not dwell on the pain and humiliation, but move forward toward my dream, which was still to own my own business. He is self-employed, so knows the satisfaction it brings and helped me navigate my way toward success. We are still together 4 years later, more in love than ever. My business has morphed and is flourishing, his business is going better than it has in years. We are partners and best friends.

I am now happier than I can ever remember being. I feel fulfilled and no longer rushed toward a goal or the perfect relationship. I am getting better at Mantra's advice to 'just be in the moment'.

The moral of this story is
1. Hard times suck, but they do end, and often you come out the other side better stronger and so much better off than you would have ever thought!

2. Always, always pay heed to your guardian voice!