No kidding, says Monday.

November 26, 2018

This weekend, I put up the rest of my Christmas decorations while the girls enjoyed their Thanksgiving weekend with their Dad, Stepmom, and family from out of town.

This weekend, I enjoyed the end of my week off of work. Sleeping in, late nights, no cares in the world.

This morning, it was back to work. A pile of emails. Coworkers who were out.

This morning it was tougher than tough when my alarm went off at 6 a.m.

This morning, the idea of “merry” laughed in my face.

This morning, I thought of the sign in front of Santa shelf and laughed.

“This is as merry as we get.” Indeed.



Moms never stop momming.

November 24, 2018

My mom is in a nursing home. Her Parkinson’s has progressed to the point that she’s been moved (though she’d say banished) to a facility that’s quite nice. The point is that when I call Mum and Dad’s house, Mum isn’t there. Getting her on the phone at her new facility is impossible. And if you were, hypothetically, able to get her on the phone, she’s not verbal. More precisely, she’s verbal in her own time, which has slowed even more than it was. The bottom line: if you’re not there in person, you can’t talk to Mum. The last time I talked to her was months ago, on my birthday.

Today, the girls are at their dad’s. I dropped them off yesterday. Since then, I haven’t so much as changed my pajamas. I’ve lounged as much as a loungey-person can lounge. It’s been good for my worn-out soul.

Which is why my mom called. Not only called, FaceTimed. It’s like she heard the unacceptable levels of laziness and called to give me a good kick in the rear! I had to laugh.

(Actually, my Auntie Pam had called and even though I saw an unsaved number [her cell] in my missed calls when I was moving Christmas decorations, I knew it had to be someone from home if it was a 508- number. So I called back. She had FaceTimed with my cousin while she was visiting with Mum and thought they could try it with me. Huzzah! Rousing success. A Mum-level of rousing success at least. Crazy thoughtful!)

And so that’s how my Mum, from across the Parkinson’s levels of suckitude and increasing in communication, my mom was able to call and give me the what-for. And a Happy Thanksgiving, an I miss you, and an I love you.

I’m not crying that’s just a bit of dust that’s gotten into my eye as I clean my house like crazy. You never know when Mum might call again.

The point isn’t that I would have done it anyway.

November 12, 2018

We are morning routine rockstars. Okay, yes, we might yell across the house, snip, and second-guess each other along the way, but the lot of us is up for 30 minutes before we’re BOOM! out the door.

We self-police, for the most part.

For. the. most. part.

I’ll admit: I’ve been the squeaky wheel lately. There was one morning my alarm didn’t go off and the girls had to get me up. (I got ready in 11 minutes that day!) And more than a few days I’ve been scrambling at the end of our usual routine. Looking for my coffee cup. Going back for a chapstick. Trying to find my keys. You know – morning stuff that I used to be immune to.

But this morning, this morning was not my fault. It was cold, I mean, really frosty, for the first time this year. 22° outside. Not too shabby, right? So I was looking for my winter coat. I made sure the girls had on shoes (not flip flops, Bee); and pants, not shorts (Gracie, tennis isn’t that hot, I don’t care you have pants at Dad’s); and jackets for everyone. Because what if the car breaks down? What if you don’t have a jacket at Dad’s? And it wasn’t going to warm up during the day, finally.

Everyone had a coat. Everyone but me. Which was odd, because I had just had my winter coat not that long ago. I had brought it with me somewhere, just in case. So I knew I had it. But it wasn’t on the coat rack, or in my closet where my coats go, or in the old place in my closet where coats used to go, or on the vacuum in the laundry room where coats tend to end up when I come in from the garage. Finally, after my third sweep, I saw what time it was and I gave up. I tramped out to the car in defeat. And when I got there?


Guess what? Found my coat.

On my kid.

Her winter coat was at – you guessed it – her dad’s house. And the point isn’t that I would have let her wear my nice, good, heavy pea coat if she asked. Especially if she didn’t have a coat that fit or one with her. I like that we share some of the same sizes and that she likes my crap. The point is more that she SHOULD HAVE SAID SOMETHING. Like, I don’t know, maybe, “HEY, I HAVE YOU COAT”?!

And that was the story of how yes, I made us late this morning, but really it wasn’t my fault.

Stupid neon red emergency lights.

November 7, 2018

Red wave. Blue wave. Bullies. Consequences. Sometimes when your best just isn’t enough, you just need to shut down down for the day and cope.

For as much as she’s stumbled, she’s runnin’…

November 6, 2018


I’ve sat and thought about what I need to do to get back to Solid Gold Katie. Vintage 2008 Kate. And my therapist, god love her, asked me not that long ago, Well, what did you do back then that you could maybe start doing now?

I hate when she has a point.

You see, the first thing that came to mind was running. I used to run. And, yeah, maybe I could stand to work out more than I could running – running never took the pounds off for me; I think I run too damn slow for that to be effective – but running makes my heart sing. So maybe I should run.

I started running again a bit ago. I’m up to 9 minutes a week, not all at a stretch because I’ve been gone a minute, but it’s enough to make my sore all over. The good kinda sore, though. Or…at least, today it it’s the good kinda sore. Ask me again in a week. And two weeks. And three.

You know what else? Only I decide to start running again the very week when Daylight Saving ends and we’re plunged into darkness, when I get home at 6 friggin’ 30 and it’s like DEFCON Midnight outside! My 14yo told me to suck it up and go outside and run – either in pitch black darkness when the zombie cows and monsters will eat me, or else in the pre-dawn hours when molesters and rapists skip up and down the trails. Silly girl. She was quick to turn me down when I asked to come along as a bufferer! Make of that what you will.

But the point is, yes, I’ve been running. And yes, it does help me feel like Vintage Katie is in there somewhere. I mean, just look at these pictures from Sunday:

Just look at that Great Blue Heron! He was a sign. I thought of biking up at Assumption College one of the few times my dad showed an interest in us, and took us biking and bird watching. I thought of the series by Cynthia Voigt, when the main character of A Solitary Blue went through his own soul-searching. It was peaceful. Lovely. Circuitous.

And I don’t know if you can see in the top pic – but that black blob? Well, that would be a cow. It seems I’ve inherited my sister’s…shall we say, mistrust…of certain bovine-type creatures. Which is why this happened:

Yeah, that would be carrying a big-ass stick. Just in case I had to beat off the cow, you see. He looked pretty interested for awhile! (I mean, who wouldn’t, really.) He walked towards me at a good-ish clip. But I didn’t want to give up my loop of pavement! …I supposed that’s how you know the runnin’ bug has bitten ya again, right? I asked, What would Mrs. Monopoli do? Okay, you’re right, she probably wouldn’t say, Beat off the cow with a stick!! HA! I can hear her yelling! I mean, actually hear her! I don’t know what she’d do, really. Surely it wouldn’t be to walk away and then run somewhere else. Sigh. Gosh darn it. I hate having consciences.

Conscience or not, I guess I’ll try this running thing for awhile. I hope I keep getting great stories and good pictures out of it.

I hope I can keep amusing you.

I hope I can keep finding myself.

Winner, winner, chicken dinner (except not).

November 5, 2018

I’m in a bit of a pickle. Only if it were pickles, I’d be totally okay.

See, my Bee-girl’s vegetarianism has reared its ugly head again. And I don’t mean to sound ugly towards it. I’ve tried to support Bee’s vegetarianism since she declared it at a very early age. I’ve allowed her to eat alternative proteins at dinner, so long as she prepared them herself (Mom doesn’t cook two dinners, honey). Or I’d let her get by with heavy veggies, our side dish, and a good glass of milk.

Her selective vegetarianism wasn’t terrible. Sometimes she’d eat chicken (but mostly not)(although it really depended on how it was prepared). She wouldn’t eat steak, but she would eat roast beef. No salmon, but she’d eat shrimp, lobster, scallops, and fried clams. Hot dogs were in, cheeseburgers were out. Unless it was from a few fast food places. Shepherd’s pie is out. Meatloaf is in. I mean: it’s crazy!

And tonight was the straw that killed me. We’re stretching until payday, but we have plenty of food in the house, just not top-shelf first-choice snack food because some peoples gobbled it up instead of eating slowly. I was considerate and let Bee choose: chicken, pork chops, steak, or shrimp.

I was pretty sure she’d choose shrimp and EmmaGrace and I could have steak. Surf n’ turf! A pretty good dinner. Only a certain picky-purple-eater declared she didn’t like shrimp anymore. She wanted pasta. I’m pretty tired of pasta. And besides, it’s a good dinner to have after work when I’ve forgotten to take out dinner again.


Now there are tears, on both sides. Sunday Night Meltdowns! Glad to see the toddler years have returned.

What do you guys do? Help!! Do I stick to my guns? I asked her to make me a list of “acceptable” dinner options. I’m not cooking two dinners or designing a limited dinner schedule according to her demands. My kids have turned into picky brats who will eat rigatoni, but not spaghetti (EmmaGrace), and peanut butter sandwiches, but not anything Mom’s prepared. Just because. I’m tired of it! I learned to eat a few bites of whatever I didn’t like when I was at friends’ houses. And she can learn, too.

Right? Or do I let her be stubborn and whither away because she’s only eating eggs and peanut butter? I need some input on this one, guys. For my sanity.

Another one bites the dust.

November 4, 2018

No, not a major accomplishment. Though, you could call it that, I suppose, if your sensibilities were just that warped. Okay, and yes, you could say mine usually were.

Yeah, I’ve got it. That warped sense of humor. Usually me. You busted me. I don’t get to get away with that. Heh.

You know what I didn’t get? An extra hour of sleep this morning. Even though it’s the end of Daylight Saving Time. I’ve been exhausted because of a super big thing that happened at ThePlaceThatShallNotBeDiscussed that was like a week-long stress-a-palooza. Last Wednesday morning, I cried actual tears when the alarm chirped its ever-so-cheerful good morning buzz. That’s how fun everything was.

So I was rather looking forward to sleeping in this weekend. It was gonna be great. Friday night I had to stay up late, because teenager doing Friday night football things. (We live in Texas. For. the. moment.) I got to bed about midnight…and slept until 6 a.m.

What. the. man.

It’s okay. I didn’t take a Tylenol PM or anything, and my tummy wasn’t feeling great. Plus, I felt pretty awake. So I laid in bed and watched some Netflix and at least had a relaxing morning not having to be anywhere or do anything.

Saturday night, I think we were all in bed by 8:30 p.m. and asleep by 9. It didn’t help that this one came down with a terrible cold:

Bee-girl came back from the Ex’s house with a horrible cough, and it seems like EmmaGrace (yes, she’s re-christened herself) caught whatever Bee had, and it hit her snap-quick! So they were more than ready to go to bed early, especially since they went to bed late the  night before, and because I’m a mean mom who made them get up at 10 a.m. I’m just sayin’ my mom never let me sleep that late in my life…or at least until I was in college and summers home were a bit of a luxury.

I’m getting a bit off-topic. Or maybe not if our subject is sleep. My point is that since I was asleep so early, I was awake at the gawdy hour of 6:40 a.m. Heavy sigh. But! Then! I looked at my computer and it was really 5:40 a.m.


Because it’s stupid Daylight Standard Time. And my sleep schedule can suck it.

Damage (good damage! baseball damage!) done.

October 29, 2018


Sweet baby jeebus, you did it! And in short order, too. I actually got to bed at a decent hour last night. (Well. Ish.)

It was beautiful. And I needed something beautiful. I needed happy smiles and goofy-ass grown men dogpiling all over my TV.

This morning I worked my smelly, hasn’t-been-washed-since-the-post-season Sox shirt into my dressy work suit for our Big Fall Muckity Muck Meeting, and tried to class it up with fancy earrings as best I could.


I stopped for Dunks and ordered a coffee regaluh. (And, sigh, yes, then I had to explain what that was. God bless.)


And this week with its full moon and the Big Fall MMM at ThePlaceThatShallNotBeDiscussed will be…whatever it is. But the thing is…I’m feeling nothing but joy!

My boys won, danced, and repeated right up to the evah-lovin’ end.

I am joyful, Boston.

And that is wicked awesome.

Fall is back (and so, perhaps, am I).

October 22, 2018

Today is Monday. I usually dread Mondays. They’re crazy, stressful, frantic, and exhausting.

But today when I stepped outside, it was cold. Well, not cold. Brisk. Fallish.

It. Was. Glorious.

I have a lot going on. A kidney stone. Plenty of bills – and not the green kind I want to see spilling out of my purse. A roof leak. A concerning lack of brakes in the car. And a constant struggle with depression and anxiety.

But that brisk air…usually it makes me homesick, that first taste of Fall each year. And, yes, there was a tiny taste of that in the back of my throat. The thing is: I’m a little bit homesick all the time. That taste didn’t grow because of the change in seasons this year.

Right now, I feel like I can come up out of it. I feel like I can change things. I feel like I have things I want to say. Words that want to crawl all up over the pages. That feeling, it’s happened before. I type a lot of “It’s gonna be better” posts. <shrugs> I can’t say if this one is for real. If it will be followed tomorrow with another.

But I don’t want to not write it because of the uncertainty.

I want to open the window, and drink in the Fall air, and let myself hope. I have things to say. And today that thing is: It is Fall-ish outside and I am rejuvenated by it.

I hope it is still Fall-ish tomorrow.

I totally forgot about the second day.

August 21, 2018

I tried to make the title even a bit more ominous than that because YOU GUYS – Second Day today. I always dread First Day of school because of (hours) earlier get-ups for the girls and the two hours of forms to sign and return, and arguing over who gets to tell mum her stories first.

But Second Day…oof. I forgot it might be worse.

I heard the girls arguing while I was still putting on my face. I almost went out to stop it – girls got claws these days! – but I figured they would sort it out. I didn’t get even a whimper out of them while we were driving; Gracie didn’t even grump when I beat her at padiddle, handily. Nope. My lumps just lumped there, unmoving. Wishing they had even five minutes of sleep left.

Of course my morning went better. My alarm went off today and everything! But ThePlaceThatShallNotBeNamed is extra NotNamey today, so there’s that.

But at least there’s crack-chicken for dinner. Nomnomnom. That will get us through. That and the promise of squishy beds!