Is it a sex blog? A mommy blog? A bitch & moan blog? Um, . . . yeah. This is my place to be totally honest. In my real life, I feel like I'm always lying to somebody about something. Here, I am totally honest. Brutally so. However, no matter what bad things I say about my kids, I adore them and would never ever really, say, sell them on Ebay. The husband, often referred to as Spousehole, is another story. Oh yeah - if you are under 18 (or if you are my husband), please leave now.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

TMI Tuesday

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1. What is your favorite Thanksgiving food?

Stuffing with gravy!! To. Die. For. Bread stuffing with 3 kinds of bread (white, wheat, and pumpernickel are what I used in mine for Thanksgiving last weekend*). Gravy made from turkey drippings and stock made by simmering the giblets with onion, garlic, celery, and carrots (but toss the giblets or feed 'em to the dog. Do you really want to eat waste-filtering organs?)

2. You can flip a switch that will wipe any band or musical artist out of existence. Which one will it be?

Any and all rap "artists" whose lyrics are misogynistic, violent, homophobic, or just plain stupid. Which is the majority.

3. You seem to be having an excellent day because you just came across a hundred-dollar bill on the sidewalk. Holy crap, a hundred bucks! How are you gonna spend it?

Take my family out for a nice dinner that I don't have to cook. I like cooking, but three meals, 7 days a week gets to be a bit much.

4. What is your favorite curse word?

Shitfuckdamn, said just like that, all run together. Also Futher Mucker.

5. Rufus appears out of nowhere with a time-traveling phone booth. You can go anytime in the PAST. What time are you traveling to and what are you going to do when you get there?

I would go back to 1968 and stop the assassinations of Martin Luther King, Jr. and Robert F. Kennedy. I think that would make today a much different, and hopefully even better, world.

Bonus (as in optional):You accidentally eat some radioactive vegetables. They were good, and what's even cooler is that they endow you with the super-power of your choice! What's it gonna be?

Invisibility! The ultimate for eavesdropping on others!

*I was sort-of trapped into making Thanksgiving last weekend. Last month we invited my in-laws to have Thanksgiving with us and they accepted. The plan was they would stay over at our house a couple days on their way from their Florida home to their Michigan home, where they'll stay through Christmas. Then they decided that they needed to get back to Michigan earlier, so they called up and said "We'll come the weekend before Thanksgiving and we'll just have the Thanksgiving dinner then!" Which sounds great, except they didn't ASK me (the cook and hostess), they just sprung it on me as a done deal. Sprung it on both me AND Spousehole. So, dutiful daughter-in-law that I am, I put together an amazingly tasty and good-looking meal. It was fabulous and left my father-in-law insisting that I provide my mother-in-law with the recipes because it was one of the best Thanksgiving meals he has ever had. Question now is what do Spousehole, the kids, and I do on the real Thanksgiving day? We've run through the leftovers pretty quickly, so do I make ANOTHER traditional Thanksgiving meal, make a slighter smaller meal with just a turkey breast or a large chicken, or do we just go to the movies, go bowling, and take the kids to the buffet at Shoney's or Fatz?

To blog is a self-invasion of privacy

Monday, November 24, 2008


I am a proud product of the public education system. I attended 3 elementary schools, ome middle school, and one high-school, all public schools. I even attended a state universities for my BA and JD. My husband attended public schools for elementary and middle school, but attended a hoity-toity international private school for "upper school" (high school to us plebes). Overall, our experiences with public schools were good.

But we aren't so sure public schools will continue to be the right choice for our children. With Boy we almost have to send him to public school because of his autism. Private schools that take autistic children tend to be boarding schools and tend to be VERY expensive. Boy would not do well away from his family and there is no way we could afford that sort of private school. Girl is another story, however. We are in one of the best school districts in South Carolina, but that's kind of like what they say about Special Olympics winners: At the end of the day, you are still retarded. (No, I don't condone the use of the term retarded, but that's how the quote goes.) At the end of the day, it's still a South Carolina public school. South Carolina is rated at or near the bottom in most every ranking of state education systems. The motto is "Thank God for Mississippi."

Boy's school did not meet their "Adequate Yearly Progress" goals under No Child Left Behind. I don't think that necessarily makes it a bad school because I think how they determine failing schools vs. successful schools is extremely flawed. But I am still not terribly impressed with Boy's school for Boy or for the regular ed kids. We might be able to enroll Girl at another school in the district (because of the No Child Left Behind thing), but the highest ranked schools don't take transfers because they are packed to the gills already. Also by next year we may live in a different district as we are only renting here and hope to purchase a house next summer. Though the way the real estate market is going we may not clear enough from selling the Michigan house to have a decent down payment on another house.

So we've looked some into private schools for Girl. There's a fabulous one up the road from us, but it's not cheap. Elementary tuition runs $7200 t0 $8000 a year (depends on if you pay up front or use a payment plan). I didn't pay that much for tuition PLUS room and board my first couple years in college. Seriously. (Thank you in-state tuition!)

Parochial schools around here tend to be Catholic, which might not be bad, or Baptist or Assemblies of God, which are not our flavor of Christianity at all. It was the same with the big parochial school system where I grew up. The strong emphasis on a severe Calvinist brand of Christianity just didn't jibe with our beliefs and made it not an option for my family. We're not Catholic either, but their beliefs are similar enough that our kids wouldn't feel like they were getting different messages at school and at home. Catholic schools tend to also be pretty tolerant of non-Catholic students. judging by the non-Catholics I've known who attended Catholic schools.

Home-schooling is really not an option for us. I just don't have the temperament for it. I know people who home-school and it's fabulous for their families. I also have know home-schoolers where the schooling part was pretty much non-existent and it was an excuse to either let their kids run wild or put the kids to work on a family farm/in a family business. Relatives of my husband moved to Florida this summer so the wife could take a job as a teacher. Their 14-yr-old son has already been kicked out of two schools - since August!! If he doesn't feel like getting out of bed, his (no job, no prospects) father doesn't make him. So now they've registered him as a home-school student. Unlike Michigan, Florida apparently checks up on homeschoolers so the father is going to have to get off his butt and actually teach the kid something (i.e., make sure he does his online schoolwork, since the dad is dumber than a box of rocks and has no business teaching anybody anything besides how to marry a woman who will support your slacker ass for more than 20 years). Anyway, I suck at getting my kids to do what I want, so I wouldn't make a good home teacher. I figure I teach 'em to walk, talk, read, and write after that it's time to turn 'em over to a trained professional. And my daughter is an extremely social child who will thrive in an environment with lots of other kids. Couple times a week outings with other homeschoolers wouldn't provide her the interaction she needs. Also she is like me and will do better with competition. That is, the work itself might not interest her, but being the best in the class will interest her and give her incentive to do the work.

So that's where we stand . Still 100% in the public school system, but considering a change.

If you have kids, how have you chosen to educate them? Answer the poll to the right, but please also leave a comment explaining why you have chosen the option(s) you have. I ask only that everyone play nice - no insulting other people's choices. Disagree if you must, but be respectful, 'k?

To blog is a self-invasion of privacy

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

TMI Tuesday and the RealBlogger House

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1. When did you last use your cellular telephone as a flashlight?

Um, never. Guess I'm behind the times.

2. On a scale from 1-10, how comfy are you being naked?

By myself, 10+. In a sexual situation, 7. In the locker room at the Y, 8. With my husband, 3 (because he's so critical).

3. What is the longest you've ever been celibate after having lost your virginity?

A year and a half. During my marriage. How pathetic is that?

4. Have you ever had sex in a car? If yes, since you were a teenager?

Oh yes and yes. As a teenager it was a pretty regular occurrence and it's happened once or twice or maybe four or five times since then. It's difficult now, what with the car seats and the children in the car seats and so on.

5. When did you last use food or drink as medication?

I use alcohol as a medication pretty regularly - lol. I eat oatmeal for the cholesterol-lowering affect, does that count?

Bonus: Name three words that:
a) get you excited - want, sexy, horny
b) make you squirm - pussy, c-ck, c---- (my kids call my cat "Mr. Pussy Cat" and that just seems weird to me, local fans of a college in my state wear "Go Cocks!" t-shirts and that makes me giggle nervously, and I just have never been comfortable with that last "c" word
c) make you laugh - "man panties," dick, whatsahoozit.


I am proud to say that I was cajoled into invited to participate in the RealBlogger House this year! 7 of us were sent to a sunny, tropical locale to live together and stop being polite and start being real. Curious to find out about our adventure? Check it out at FTN's place!

To blog is a self-invasion of privacy

Monday, November 17, 2008

The long boring explanatory post

I apologize to my friends and readers, if I have any left, for my lack of posting, commenting, and e-mail answering. I am sorry.

So WTF is going on? I'm depressed. More so than usual. This is pretty bad. If other people weren't depending on me, I might not even get out of bed. But kids and their needs don't allow for such indulgence, so I get up and make do.

Moving has been difficult. I miss my neighborhood in Michigan and my fellow stay-at-home moms there. I miss my parents, sister, and nephew back in Michigan.

Most of all, I miss having an only moderately difficult autistic child. Because the autistic child I have now has recently surpassed highly difficult and has moved on to extremely difficult. The move has been very hard on him and his behavior has deteriorated accordingly. He is contrary about everything, from tiny things that hardly matter to major issues. Some days I am furious with him, other days I feel sorry for him. But regardless of how I feel, I just can't seem to help him make this adjustment. When he came home from school one day last week, he just collapsed on the front lawn, crying and saying "This is not our house! Not going inside - not our house!" As I held him and tried to calm him down, he stated "Want go home. Real home. Want go home to Grand Rapids, Michigan." He's so distraught and I feel powerless to help him. He refuses to work some days in his new school and he talks about wanting to go back to his old school in Michigan. At age 7 he is suddenly wetting his pants like a toddler, going through 4 outfits at school one day last week. He refuses to ride the bus to school in the morning, so I have to get up God-awful early every morning to drive him. I can't just drop him off either; I have to go inside and walk him to his classroom. He just can't be trusted to go to his classroom otherwise. I don't think he likes his special ed teacher and I don't think the teacher is terribly fond of him either. Boy does okay in his regular ed classroom, so I really think that dislike of his special ed teacher is part of the problem.

We were referred to an autism specialist with the local university hospital, but the first available appointment is in APRIL. Other psychiatrists we've contacted can get see him in December or January. Not terribly helpful. The school support staff (counselors, school psychologist) are not very helpful either. Hardly anyone seems to have any training with autistic kids, let own autism certification. Even the special ed teacher is not certified in autism and isn't very experienced with autistic kids. It's a big change from the autism program in our former school district in Michigan, where all the teachers were certified in autism and there was a whole system in place designed to support and nurture autistic kids. There is no autism program in our current school district, even though it is easily as large as the one in Michigan. Instead of a centralized program for autism, they just leave each neighborhood school to deal with their autistic kids on their own. It's stupid and unprofessional.

Girl has adapted to the move with no problems. She is a normal, active, imaginative little girl who gets into the usual preschool mischief. For instance, she cut her hair herself recently. My baby's beautiful long hair is no more. She cut so much of it so close to the scalp that there was no way to save the bits of length that were left. The stylist who did her best to clean-up Girl's tonsorial mess calls the resulting style a "pixie" cut. Girl loves that and tells everyone that she has a "pixie cut, just like Tinkerbell." It breaks my heart, because I loved combing and styling her hair. Now she looks like a shorter version of her brother. At least she likes girly clothes and pink everything, so hopefully people don't mistake her for a boy. The day Girl cut her hair, I cried and cried the whole day. I was borderline hysterical. I knew I was WAY overreacting, but I couldn't stop it regardless. That helped it really hit home for me how deeply I am depressed.

Our inability to sell our house in Michigan depresses me further. We've dropped our price $20,000 from last spring to now. And that's after refinishing the hardwood floors, new storm doors and windows, new paint, and more. And including all the appliances. It's like all the equity we built up over 10 years is just disappearing. I just thank God that we never got a home equity loan or refinanced and took money out, like so many people did when real estate prices were stable or rising. Many of those folks are now upside-down on their houses since the bottom fell out, especially in Michigan. It's depressing as hell.

Then there's my relationship with Spousehole. For a while it seemed like things might be better, but now not so much. A big part of the problem is that he feels stressed by paying for both houses and he is a real asshole when he's stressed. Money has always been a big issue for him and now it's even worse. He's done stupid things like take away my debit card so that he can control down to the penny what I'm allowed to spend. His control freak tendencies have been greatly exacerbated. That makes depressed too. I don't thrive under that sort of regime.

I try to look on the bright side of things. There's no snow here. There's more sun than we would get in Michigan. Gas prices are down (under $2.00!!). But it's difficult.

My fun-loving, sex-obsessed self will be back, hopefully sooner rather than later. This gloom will pass eventually. I know that, even though right now I only see darkness. All I can do is try to find my way back to the light.

To blog is a self-invasion of privacy

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Unconscious Mutterings

Unconscious Mutterings - come play with us!

  1. Please stop :: breaking my heart

  2. Move over :: and let me drive

  3. Sweet as :: pie

  4. Bet :: it all, baby!

  5. Mad about :: You

  6. It’s over :: hard to say, even when everyone knows it's true

  7. Intend to :: do a lot of things

  8. Blame :: game

  9. Jefferson :: bi-sexual libertine

  10. Heartless :: Bitch

Friday, November 7, 2008

This Just In . . .

From The Onion

WASHINGTON—African-American man Barack Obama, 47, was given the least-desirable job in the entire country Tuesday when he was elected president of the United States of America. In his new high-stress, low-reward position, Obama will be charged with such tasks as completely overhauling the nation's broken-down economy, repairing the crumbling infrastructure, and generally having to please more than 300 million Americans and cater to their every whim on a daily basis. As part of his duties, the black man will have to spend four to eight years cleaning up the messes other people left behind. The job comes with such intense scrutiny and so certain a guarantee of failure that only one other person even bothered applying for it. Said scholar and activist Mark L. Denton, "It just goes to show you that, in this country, a black man still can't catch a break."

Read more from The Onion

To blog is a self-invasion of privacy

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The Post-Election Post

Obama Pictures and McCain Pictures
see Sarah Palin pictures

Obama Pictures and McCain Pictures
see Sarah Palin pictures

Kudos to McCain for a great concession speech and for smacking down the boorish booers. I think McCain really is a good guy. I just didn't want him as my president. Don't worry about John's future, however, because:

Obama Pictures and McCain Pictures

But I would have a little concern for Bristol Palin:
Obama Pictures and McCain Pictures
see Sarah Palin pictures

To blog is a self-invasion of privacy

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

TMI Tuesday / I voted!

1. Have you ever had a moving violation? An auto accident? That was your fault?

Yes, yes, and yes. I've had speeding tickets - many speeding tickets, failure to maintain an assured clear distance (I rear-ended someone), and failure to yield (turned in front of an oncoming car that I didn't see coming). But no tickets in the last 10 years.

Accidents, I've had a few. Slipping and sliding on Michigan ice, rear-ending someone when I wasn't paying attention, turning in front of an oncoming car that I didn't see: those were all my fault. I've also been hit by a drunk driver who ran a stop sign and rear-ended by folks not paying attention. Our van was side-swiped by a trailer of a semi (and the driver left the scene of the accident so we had to chase him down. Asshole.)

2. Have you ever voted? How old was your were you the first time you voted?

I registered to vote on my 18th birthday and I vote whenever possible. My first national-level election was Senate/House of Reps when I was 19 and my first presidential election was when I was 21. I've never missed a November election, presidential or not. I rarely miss local elections or primaries and only if I absolutely cannot be there (I vote absentee if I know I'll be gone).

3. Are you glad this election cycle is over?

Oh yes, most definitely. I hear tell that South Carolina is a pretty state and I'm hoping to find out once all these election signs are gone!

4. Do you have guilty pleasure? What is it (or are they)?

Blogging, reading blogs, savoring white chocolate Lindor truffles, and reading. Spousehole always makes me feel guilty for reading because he thinks I should be constantly cleaning, like his mother always is. I, however, clean only out of necessity, not as a hobby. (If she runs out of things to clean in her own home, my mother-in-law goes to her church or her children's homes and cleans. I'm totally serious. It's an obsession with that woman.)

It's not right for a woman to read. Soon she starts getting "ideas" and "thinking."
(In the comments, name the movie and the character who voiced this quote)

5. What is the most embarrassing thing you have done recently?

I got totally, hopelessly lost trying to find my own house. I was coming home from the library (my second home) and found a road unexpectedly closed. There was a sign saying the road was closed and to follow the detour, but there were no detour signs anywhere. I tried following someone else who was cutting through a subdivision, but lost them at an intersection and then couldn't find my way out of that subdivision. It was ridiculous. Everything went in circles and nothing I tried got me out. After a crazy amount of time I found an outlet back to the road I came in on. I went back to the "Road closed - follow detour" sign to see if any detour signs had materialized, but no. I ended up driving all the way back into town and then taking the only other way I know back to my unincorporated village. Complete waste of gas, but no more so that driving aimlessly around an unfamiliar subdivision. In talking with others later, I learned that going back into town and around the other way (as I did) was really the only viable option anyway. Crazy.

I have also turned into the wrong driveway in my own subdivision. The houses are all so similar. Even Spousehole has trouble finding our house sometimes. I planted some mums by our mailbox to try to make it easier to locate which driveway is ours. I can't do too much more to personalize it because (a) we are only renting, and (b) the homeowners' association rules are designed to prevent too much personalization. Uniformity (i.e., monotony) is the order of the day around here.

Bonus: How much impact has the Wall Street and general economic wilt had on you?

A HUGE impact. We are trying to sell our house in Michigan and we've had to lower the price a couple times and still no bites. The average time on the market in our city is 17 months! It's starting to feel like we will never sell that house. It looks so good too - all kinds of upgrades, newly refinished hardwood floors throughout, new storm doors - I'm tempted to move back if it doesn't sell by the time our lease here in S.C. is up. Spousehole can try to find a new job in Michigan or he can stay here and the kids and I will go back without him.

Spousehole had moved his 401K money into safer investments (bonds and money markets) last winter, so we didn't actually lose money there and even made a little. We'll get it back in mutual funds and such after a little time and after it gets rolled into his current company's plan (or an IRA, which I would prefer). My little IRA is all in bonds, so it also wasn't hurt. Not sure about the kids' 529 plans, because those were set up by and are handled by my in-laws investment advisor. I suspect they've likely lost money, since the kids are quite young and the investments for their age groups tend to be in riskier funds (most 529 plans start in the riskier investments for little kids and then get more conservative as the child approaches college-age).


Spousehole stayed home this morning so I could go vote child-free. I got in line at 6:45 (the polls opened at 7:00) and there were about 200 people ahead of me. Outdoors. In the mist/rain. Once I got close to the building, however, I got lucky. There are three precincts in the building and the indoor line for my precinct was short, so they were letting people from my precinct inside to get into the line. Woo hoo! All in all it really wasn't so bad. I was home at 8:15. Spousehole hadn't even showered yet, since he didn't think I would be back so quick. I think my precinct moved faster because a lot of the area is still not so densely populated and there are a lot of military families, most of whom vote absentee. I know my subdivision has a lot of Navy, Air Force, and Coast Guard families and all the military-affiliated folks I spoke with voted absentee, whether here or where they are from originally.

If you are a U.S. citizen and haven't voted yet, GET OUT THERE AND VOTE! Remember: if you don't participate, you have no business complaining about who the rest of us choose. Non-U.S. citizens may complain all you want, of course, since you don't get a choice. But if you are eligible to vote and don't, I don't want to hear any complaints from you, m'kay?

To blog is a self-invasion of privacy

Monday, November 3, 2008