Like a Box of Chocolates

Life is whizzing by…sometimes at light speed, other times at a snails pace.

B. has been home for almost three weeks from Scattergood Friends School, where he started his Junior year of High School this fall, for vacation.  T. is back in school at the Life Skills program, where he has been attending since this Fall, from a two week vacation.  S. is back to his regular routine of going to the gym in the morning then work, then back home for dinner.  I begin my next semester of classes at Kirkwood Community College, continuing my slow steady progress towards my associates degree in Graphic Communication, on the 17th of Jan.

The New Year has begun.  I have been feeling very vacant and disconnected to everything around me for quite some time, so in hopes of rekindling being more present in my life I have turned back to this form of expression, blogging.  I find I reflect more accurately and thoughtfully upon my life through this process of writing to the blogging void.

To play a little catch up regarding the Holidays….

Peanut Butter Cups…

Brian came to visit us for the Solstice.  That was so fun having him here.

Chocolate Raspberry filled…

Did I mention after almost two years of hair growing B. finally gave up on having his hair long.  On his own accord he chose to have his haircut, SHORT!!  I love it!! Finally he has peripheral vision back!

He looks so grown up now!!

Turtles…

And we got the cutest kitten 6 months ago and she is so grown up now and loving her new Solstice gift.  A huge cat tree with three columns and three levels of play and sleep areas.

I know she is adorable!!

Strawberry Cream filled…

S. is on the local fire department and since May we live 1 minute away from the firehouse, walking. O_o  Yes, you heard  me right.  We moved.  We are still in the middle of No-Wheresville-Iowa, but we now live in town rather than out in the country.  I hate having neighbors.  Not personally, but due to the issues it creates with T.  He is curious and social and has NO boundaries. So it is dangerous for him to play outside when there is so much going on outside, giving him ample time to break the rules.  Rules, like no walking onto other peoples property, no entering peoples homes, no leaving our property, If biking or skootering…no going beyond the boundaries, etc etc etc….It is crazy living in an area in which I have to be a hawk watching this kid, just so he can play outside.  Pathetic, I know.  But necessary.

Dark chocolate Caramels…

Do you know what I did for New Years Eve?  Nothing, but the next day I got the best gift ever!!  6 hours allotted for me to join a girlfriend in a movie marathon with no children and plenty of chocolate on hand.  15 minutes into the movie and both us ladies are passed out on the couch.  Three hours later we wake have a snacky dinner and hang out chatting until I feel sleep coming back upon me.  Again, Pathetic, but wonderful!!!

Chocolate Covered Peanuts…

This week when B. returns to school he begins an Independent Study in the of Japanese Language.  I ordered him a PC program and a textbook.  Now I must go through each and try to create a cohesive lesson plan using them both.  This has meant staring and typing and reading and typing and learning more about Japanese than I ever intended. LOL  I am glad he loves the Language but him learning two languages at the same time seems like overload to me.  He is not phased by it so I guess I will simply follow his judgement.  He is so smart and eager to learn.  This summer he wants to take Trigonometry and Physics courses, continue his TaeKwonDo, and visit colleges.  It’s going to be a big challenge to get everything he wants complete, but I will do whatever I can to make his aspirations come to fruition.

Well, that is enough for now.  Crazy and busy, but mostly in a good way with the only exception being T.  That is just part of my world.

Looking back…Saying goodbye

Here are a couple pictures from our last playdate in NY.  Before we left, I was truly Blessed by the universe in giving both myself and my dear friend Paula increased stamina and stronger constitutions to handle one last playdate before we needed leave for Iowa.  Ben and T. got a chance to play for a really long time and say goodbye.  Me and Paula got to play and say goodbye, too.

We will miss them dearly.  Hugs!!

Preparing for the Move.

Throughout the week of Thanksgiving and then some we found ourselves painting each and every room in the house.  While this process was proceeding, we were also half-assed packing stuff up and moving it outta the way, to make way for new Carpets that were put down on the 30th.  It has bee a mad house around here!  I am very thankful to Jacqui and Robert Rayne and their lovely girls that came over to spend an entire day painting the walls in my house with us.  They worked themselves into a puddle of mud.  I know we went to bed every night achy and dead tired.  I am so incredibly lucky to have them in my lives.  They understand what it means to be friends and be in a community.  Their isn’t a whole lot out there I could think of that I wouldn’t do for those folks and I am pretty sure they feel that way about most folks they meet and know.  It is going to be the most difficult thing, leaving them behind.  With so much still needing to be done to ensure their home and health, it is going to be so hard to be so far away and helpless.  Not my favorite feeling!

A BIG Thank you to the Rayne Family for Helping us Paint!!

Now I must clean up messes of paint spots, clean floors, replace caulking, and separate all we are going to storage and all that is going in the car/airplane with us to the hotel.  Much work to be done.  S. leaves tomorrow and that makes me anxious and sad.  I don’t know how I am going to get out there or when.  All I know is all my stuff is being picked up on the 12th by packers and then I don’t know what. <shrugs>  We’ll see, I guess.  I feel sorry for the dogs.  The trip is going to be rough on them.  Staying in hotels with dogs isn’t so easy.  they usually have to be kenneled until you get home from work, if you are not in the room, so we have their cages.  Snoopy won’t mind so much, but Fiona will loose her mind!!  She is usually out roaming her acreage lazily all day long.  Days will be long stuffy and small.  My poor baby. 😦

But when I arrive it will all be better since, I will be their and be taking her out for walkies often!!!  That means no time in the kennel unless I must go out, if that.  🙂  I don’t mind us needing to be out there and think it will be a pretty neat adventure.  I hope for the best, but its the actually process of moving that just bites!!  I need someone to point to some shiney bright spot I am missing about the process of moving.  I would really appreciate it.  End results are going to be wonderful, but what is wonderful about this particular climb?  Anyone???

Births and Deaths

B.’s 14th birthday was coming up and after a brief discussion he opted to donate his funds for his party to our dear friends the Rayne family.  Not even a hour later I got a very upsetting phone call.  My ex-husband informed me that my sister-in-law, Sharon, had suddenly passed away.  After not being able to attend the funeral services last month for my nieces husband, I wasn’t going to let money stop me this time.  Sharon had been very ill from a really bad fall down a flight of stairs two years ago, that put her in a coma for three months after the incident.  She had never been the same from that point on and was practically unrecognizable.   She had a very hard life but always had a smile on her face.  She had finally found a great husband and her life was finally joyable on all aspects, then this happened.

I was close to her oldest son, Michael and worried for him greatly.  He is very sensitive and has gone down many wrong paths in his youth.  I wanted to be there to support him.  I may not be best friends with my ex-husband but this was his sister and that makes her my sister.  I was devastated.

As soon as I heard word as to when any services were taking place I headed out the door with not even enough gas and food money to get me there and back.  I was welcomed back in Brian’s home and he was overly generous and helped with expenses while I was there.  It was almost two weeks before all the services were completed before we returned home.

In the meantime, I was able to reconnect with family that I had not seen in a very long time and the boys got to spend an enormous amount of time with their father.  Unprecedented really!  I even let my Ex take the boys hiking up Mount Washington, while I drove up with my car to prepare a filling lunch and relax a little.   The views were great!  We hadn’t been up there since Bradley was tiny.  Everyone had a nice time.

My dearest friend Lynnie had come out to MA to join me and the boys for few days before returning to her vacation in MA with her family.  I was overjoyed!! to see her.  It had been such a very long time and Brian, even let her stay with us while I was there.  I tell you, I am so blessed by these two.  I couldn’t ask for better, more supportive, loving, generous, thoughtful, friends.

My dear friend Kara, was having a birthday for her 4 yr old daughter.  I love this little girl, so I was fortunate enough to be back in MA for her special day.

Just to make things a little more tragic, Bradley’s birthday fell on the day of the Memorial service.  I couldn’t just let the day go by without having him feel special.  Well, not only was it special but he received a very special gift from Brian.  A little backstory:  While out in MA in July for our vacation Brian had been incredibly generous with his time and effort and helped fine tune Bradley’s guitar playing while using one of his electric guitars.  This day, Brian had gone out and purchased Bradley his very own electric guitar.  It was so incredibly special to have both Brian and Lynn to celebrate this day.  Lynn had given Bradley his acoustic guitar a couple years ago.  He was totally surprised and in awe!!  We had cake and ice cream and Bradley received money from Lynn, which was amazing for Bradley.   He thought he was rich!! 😉  I had given him tickets to his very first concert, to be held Oct. 1 in Ithaca.  “They Might Be Giants”  It was their first stop on the new concert tour.  Totally awesome!  It was small, but he made out and hopefully the mornings events of the day didn’t taint his special day.

Stress made me crazy and I really just felt catatonic but was forced to deal with many challenges, especially T. who was totally agitated the entire trip making things very hard on everyone.  It was an emotionally exhausting trip.  I am glad to be home.

 

Dear Friends!

Like Jacquis New Hairdo!!!

Like Jacquis New Hairdo!!!

summer 09 026

Sassy girl!!

Sassy girl!!

I am so extremely fortunate to be apart of the community in which lies the Rayne Family. My dear friend Jacqui Rayne discovered her breast cancer several months ago and it has been such a mixed blessing. Her family is one of those things in life that makes you see there is hope and love in this world.
When friends and family from oversees were informed of her medical condition, we were pleasantly surprised by a lovely visit from Amanda. She came to spend a couple weeks during the first rounds of Chemo treatment with the Rayne family. She was brilliant and joyous and fun to be around. I was fortunate enough to have met her and got to spend some time with her during her visit. She attended the same music study school in England with Jacqui. It was a musical visit to say the least.
Amanda had energy to spare and spunk along with it. Being a fair city girl, it was amazing to watch her get down and dirty with the farm chores and feed the pigs and goats and such at the Raynes Family farm. She worked hard!! It was such a joy to have met her and I do hope that I will see her again in my future.

The Last Day

Today is the last day of our vacation.  July 19th Sunday.

I whined at Brian to spend the last day out with me and the boys.  I was pleasantly surpised that he said yes.  He has a different schedule to sleep on and is just not in the same frame of mind that promotes participating in activities when children are involved.  Understandly so.  He is a single young guy.  Enough said.

I really was aching for my favorite pastries and I was breaking GFCF today for this.  I was given another surprise when Christine said she would join me too!!  This was going to be a great send off.  I picked up Christine and we went to the “Good Ole Yum Yum Shoppe” in Dracut, MA.  It is one of the few pastry places I know of that still make real fresh pastries right there on the premises.  These aren’t commercially made anything!!  I loaded up!!!!  The place had changed, but thankfully not in any way that would impair the pastry. 🙂

Num num num num num num num.

Then we ventured up to Nashua NH to Max’s Mini-Golf, to meet up with Brian.  We had a great time.  It was getting too hot for us near the end of the course and I wasn’t feeling well and niether was T. at that point, but it was really fun.  I took some rare photos of Brian as I have only seen a few in my lifetime of him.  There were extremely challenging holes and so many were given to close calls or hole-in-ones.  It was amazing and fun.

We wrapped up our game and headed to a Steakhouse for dinner, but T. had a meltdown and needed some rest before we tried a reastaurant type atmosphere, so we traveled to Leominster, Ma to the same restaurant chain and ate there.  All was much better after we had the drive to relax and compose ourselves.  The sun really did a number on T.  The dinner was delicious and everyone enjoyed themselves. 

It was so nice for Brian to take us out today and I really enjoyed spending time with him and Christine.  It made me feel very grateful for my friendships.  It was a nice last day of vacation.  I will miss everyone.  There were so many poeple I didn’t get to see and so many that I hadn’t seen in what seems like forever on this trip.  It was like riding down memory lane.  Miss you all!!!  Thanks for making this vacation really wonderful!!

Squee!!!!

The first full day of vacation began with me calling a certain someone to surprise her that I was in town.  Surprises don’t work so well when the person you are calling is three times zones away.  It happens that Adrianne was on vacation, herself, in CA for 2 two weeks and I had called her at 5am there.  It figures!!  LOL

Well, She was home now and we were going to play.  I love this woman to pieces.  It kills me not to be with her, like we used to.  But when our kids are older we are pretty determined to be together again.   I met her manyn years ago when I was still with my husband.  She was part of the same coven.  I grew to love her better than a sister.  When I started dating after I left my husband she was a big part of my life.  S. and I love Adrianne and her support has been a treasure to me.  In times of strife with T. being hospitalized she even opened her home to myself and B. so that we might live closer to his ward, until he was stable.  She is incredible and fun and such a grounding spot for me.  It just isn’t a trip to MA without her.

 Today, we were going to Glouster Beach.  We first stopped for lunch at the Boston Market and then headed for the beach.  We were in intense conversation the whole time, catching up with eathother and just having a blast.

The beach was HUGE!!!!  I had never been.  I was astounded.  The water was much much warmer than Maines’.  It seemed like a miles walk from the water to our blankets.  We had such a great time.  The kids had such a great time.

Afterward we hung out at her home to catch up some more.  It was hard to walk out that door.  All I wanted to do was curl up in her lap and stay forever.  I knew that it was going to be a long time till I saw her again.