Monday, February 28, 2005

My Hometown *sigh*

My Way News
I keep thinking that if this had happened in 1983.....I would have skipped school to be outside the courthouse (which is about a mile from my alma mater as the crow flies).

I have to laugh at the comment about people wearing boots/western casual in Santa Maria. My experience is that few dress that way unless it's Elks Rodeo time, although it doesn't provoke comments or stares if someone does dress western regularly.

My dad knows Angel Bourbon. The other bartender at the Santa Maria Inn (who died in the late 80's I think) was named....Ira Gin. Yep. Gin and Bourbon.

As for the agriculture, the most important crop to me is the strawberries, because my childhood best friend's parents owned the Blosser Berry Stand. Every year on my birthday they would give me a flat of Chandler strawberries. Absolutely the best table strawberry ever.

They forgot to mention cabbage as one of the crops, hey mon!
And many's the time that mom brought home "road kill" broccoli for us..she followed a produce truck that lost part of its load.

OK enough randomizing for now. It must be horrible trying to drive Miller/Betteravia right now- two main roads.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

"Tradition, Discipline and Rules..."

".......must be the tools--/Without them: Disorder! Anarchy! Moral Disintegration!/In short, you have a ghastly mess!"

Tonight was the monthly group piano class for the kids. We (David, Sammie and I) worked hard together on major chords: being able to spell them, find the right keys just so many half-steps apart, and marking them on the keyboards. Sammie prepared two pieces to play, as did David. We also read about/discussed the lives of Spanish composers Albeniz, Granados, and de Falla, and I even downloaded Spanish Dance No. 2 by Granados and burned it onto a CD to take to class.

I prepared dinner on time and we ate as a family.

Comes time to leave for class:
David: "I can't find any of my shoes! And my sandals have dog poop on them!"
Sammie: "Where is my music and my notebook with my homework?"
Erin: "Where is that @#!@*#$%R! (mental cursing only) CD I burned?!"

We were 5 min late for class. Sammie couldn't play her pieces, nor turn in her homework (she was crying). David came to class with bare feet.


Oh yes, I am laughing about it now but I was doing a burn all night long. ALL THAT HARD WORK FOR WHAT?!

Geez lou EEZE.

So on the way home I made it perfectly clear: "No food, drink or tv ever again until 1) All of your shoes are in the shoe tower by the door, and 2) you have found every single music book and notebook."

It took 5 minutes. *smacking head* BUT NOOOOOO we couldn't find any of it beFORE class, oh no.


Just got off the phone with Jennifer. She's lining us up a huge wedding cake for October: square stacked cake, fondant covered, with fondant bows and pearls. Serving about 265. Woohooo! Now I'd better get busy and get those fondant bows handled. The last bow I made, flopped utterly. But I was doing it just for fun then, not profit. This cake will bring in over $750 with the extra fondant work that needs doing. The reception will be at The Vault in Tacoma, a very nice place for a wedding reception. (Please don't have the cake near the dance floor or the entrance like the one we did last summer!)

I think I've calmed down enough now to be able to speak sweetly to the children.

Actually, earlier on I apologized to them both for being such a maniac and they very sweetly hugged and kissed me and forgave me. Now I just have to forgive myself. *rolling eyes*

They should be in bed and I should be reading a book. Halfway through The Complete Adventures of Sherlock Holmes now. I pick off a few more cases most evenings I read, but I don't read every day.

I see that I've not responded to my personal question of yesterday, as to living and thinking being mutually exclusive.

I'm still thinking about my answer. :O)

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

non raison d'etre

Life continues in its endless pattern. I know there has to be something of significance *digging deeply in the cavernous recesses of my brain* ----nope.

Took kids to piano yesterday and as soon as we got there, Sammie got sick. Took her back home straight away. David finished up his lesson and I came back for him. Sammie, oddly enough, was just fine after that. Must've been the breakfast cereal.

This morning I felt pretty good. Worked out hard in the Powerflex class (overloaded my weights and was shaking afterward), then came home and did some science with David and Sammie (study of birds), then moved on to history (the Ch'in Dynasty and the building of the Great Wall), and then read Understood Betsy with them. We didn't get to math or language but some days are like that.

This being my huge piano teaching day I am feeling rather drawn and quartered. It's so obvious when students haven't practiced! That was the case for fully half of the kids today. Ah well, yesterday was Presidents' Day, and I doubt many spent time at the keyboard. (My kids did! I'm not going to clean house every week for them to just sit on their butts and loaf!) In between lessons (this is a guilty confession here) I would occasionally run into the kitchen and eat sugar cubes. Yes, just plain sugar! How sad is that??! I didn't want an apple, an, I wanted SUGAR and was going to eat it plain.

Dinner tonight was steelhead, freshly caught on Saturday and given to us by our church friends. It's very like salmon, you know, so I just baked it in foil for about 25 min (it was a thick filet) with butter, garlic salt and pepper, topped with onion and lemon slices. Delish with bacon fried rice. Andy seemed to enjoy it, and so did the kids.

I'm still working on the B section of Chopin's Nocturne in F# major - the Doppio movimento part that I can't control when I'm playing fast. I have 1 1/2 more days to polish it up before Thursday's group class where I'll have to perform it from memory. (not a problem, already memorized).

Not much else has been going on. I suppose that's a good thing! I'm still trying to be proactive about my physical health (going on week 3) and I'm not seeing any results weight-loss-wise (hmmm, see the sugar incident above for a clue?) - BUT I feel pretty good. With occasional owies and achies! (My pecs and gluts are rather sore.)

Since I'm not in the habit of asking reflective questions (after all, nobody reads this!) - I think I will have to start being more deep and soul-baring; otherwise this blog will continue to be the standard recitation of "what I did last ___________."

So, must come up with THEME and/or TOPIC TO PONDER. If I were really observant, I'd take a thread from the occurrences of my daily grind and come up with something really of value. But I usually just react to what 's going on, not try to follow Intelligent Patterns. I am what I am. Which is why this blog is so shallow. :p

Andy would like to read this to find greater insights into my soul. Ha. Grab a ruler, dude! We're definitely in the kiddie pool here.

It's too late to think about these things. As a matter of fact, I haven't done much thinking at all lately, just living. Are these things mutually exclusive?

Oooooooo there's my Deep Question to Ponder. Success! At least for tonight anyway.

Now we will have to see how much thinking I do about the answer.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Mommy Madness

MSNBC - Mommy Madness

Finally, someone understands. It takes a mom to do it though.

Monday, February 14, 2005


Amy is being deployed. She got called up yesterday to report to Ft. Jackson on Easter Sunday to mobilize and start on the long haul to Iraq.

Does the Army care that she is holding down the fort stateside whilst Andy has just begun his term in Iraq for a year?

Will they relent and let her stay until he gets home so their 5 kids are not deprived of BOTH parents?

It is hard to accept this as decent or right.

Ironically enough, I do support our troops and I am grateful for their sacrificing their lives--whether living or dying--but this is just too much to ask of a family. Both parents deployed at the same time, with 5 little ones at home (and one not even school aged)? Come on.

I am hoping and praying that Someone Somewhere in The Army will put her on the cut list, or whatever it's called.

Knowing how sick I feel about all this....I cannot even imagine what they are feeling right now.

I wish I lived closer so I could DO something more practical.

Saturday, February 12, 2005

Amy's Blog Site: Absolutely Normal Chaos

Absolutely Normal Chaos: My Personal War - (Mom) plus (Five kids) minus (Dad in Iraq) plus (one year) = chaos -

I finally got a Google toolbar installed and disabled my stupid MSN one, so I now have a blogger link right on the bar. :O) Makes it much easier to post web sites.

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Wednesday: only one day until "Saturday"

It's true: Wednesday marks the end of the busy week; Thursday is my Saturday!

Sat, Sun, Mon, Tue, and Weds are my work week; between church and cleaning and teaching piano and taking piano.......Thurs is the first day I can breathe easy.

however, in practice for tomorrow I'm still sitting here in my pajamas. I should be dressed, but...

Yesterday while teaching I heard an ungodly screaming coming from the front yard. I truly thought somebody had a bone sticking through his/her skin, it was so shrill and loud.

On further examination, it was the little kid next door. He's the same age as David, but about 1 1/2 feet shorter, and a Napoleonic complex to boot. Apparently David had sneaked up on him in the bushes and surprised him/scared him. The kid completely freaked out, started throwing punches and then just screaming until his face was purple. I went back to teaching; let Andy figure it out. The kid's mom came and collected him I guess; then life went on as before.

I'm not thrilled about D and S playing with the kid next door, but kids are sparse in this neighborhood. And the kid next door has some huge family issues that are very difficult for a 7 yo to try to sort thru emotionally. So, we do the best we can, trying to be understanding with him, but at the same time instructing D/S that they should NOT accept verbal or physical abuse from the KND; just come home (or send KND home, depending).

OK I need to break away and finish up school. Puyallup School District has 1/2 day Wednesdays, so D and S need to be done with everything so I can kick them outside. Hey, it's sunny and 32ยบ so why not?! :)

The JAG-ged Edge

The JAG-ged Edge
A link to our friend Andy who's deployed in Iraq.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Jello legs; noodle arms

I have been a good girl this week with working out every day, even if only for 30 minutes because of the busy schedule.

Well, since Thurs. is kindof a "breather" day for lessons, regular time commitments, etc....I was able to catch a group exercise class @ Bally's called PowerFlex.

HA!!! It was a lifting/muscle building class. We used a series of free weights, hand weights, and isometric exercises that really burned. We started off with pushups (about 50) then went to bicep curls (again, about 50) then pressups with bar weights....then straight back to pushups again (oh lordy). Then we gave arms a break and did lunges and squats (with weights on our shoulders)--- we worked every major muscle group (and some minor ones too) and after 45 minutes I was shaking. I was so relieved to do crunches for the last 15 min. Even now if I raise my arms above shoulder level they feel weak and shaky. I know I will feel it tomorrow!

Tomorrow I can either do that cycling class again (which I really liked, though challenging) or wait one hour and do step aerobics, which I used to love, B.C. (Before Children).

The sun has been shining and it's been in the 50's here so the crocus are blooming and it feels springy. However, we're supposed to get some cold this weekend (the S word is in some forecasts) so it's only temporary. Still, was able to rake out some grass moss yesterday (def. not today with my arms in the shape they're in!) and pull weeds out of my front flowerbed. Kids were able to ride bikes outside, a great boon! I had to raise the seats on both kids' bikes. This will definitely be the last year on this bike for David with how tall he is.

It's my mom's birthday today and I'm wondering how to give her the gift she needs most of all: time away! With taking care of Grandma (90, opinionated and getting dementia) and dealing with Dad all the time (68 and sometimes irrationally quick-fused) I wonder she doesn't just tell both of them to go jump off a bridge. But she doesn't, is the wonder. Maybe I'll send her a gift certificate to the movies so she can go with some girlfriends. I originally thought certificates to a nice restaurant, but Andy pointed out that would be a gift for Dad, not Mom. :Op. He's probably right.

I'd better go for now and deal with the mounds of CLEAN (yes, clean!) laundry.