Tuesday, March 31, 2009

My Dad

Thank you for you comments and support regarding my last post. I believe it's difficult being a SAHM, but believe it or not, even harder for a SAHM who works part time. Because my hours are not regular and truly are part time, I don't have a regular paid babysitter. Seriously, who would want a job that doesn't have set hours? There are some people (mostly other mothers) who are fortunate enough to have their parents' help. In my eyes, they are the lucky ones. I hope those people don't take their parents for granted. My prayer for them is to realize that not everyone has what they have. If I sound bitter, I guess I am. Before my father died, he adored his grandchildren. He never met Monkey Girl, she was born later that year when he passed away.

My father, Richard was such a generous, kind and loving man and father. He would do anything for his children. I didn't realize it when I was young, but I did when his first grandchild (the Mayor) was born. After her birth, my father evolved into an even more loving and generous man. He was so in love with her. He wanted me to be able to work (sing) and dropped everything so he could help me. Because he was always "my first call" for babysitting, the two were very close and had a strong bond. When Computer Boy was born my dad was thrilled at having two grandchildren. He loved his grandson as much as he loved his first grandchild. Unfortunately, as my son got a little older, my dad started to succumb to living with type II diabetes for 30 years. It got harder for him to control his blood sugar and started insulin regularly. He was able to manage his diabetes first through diet, then medication and diet and finally with insulin. My dad worked very hard to stay healthy--he even went to the gym every other day for many years. However, in the end, diabetes got the better of him. I do think my children extended his desire to live and so his last couple of years were not of the same quality as the rest of his life. So, am I thankful to have had his help? Definitely! But, even more so, I am extremely thankful that he was a part of my life and my children's lives.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Let me out, I need air

Sorry I haven't written. I don't have it in me. Perhaps, it's because I'm so overwhelmed I feel that I can't breathe. I just want to cry. I know I'm approaching my "busy" time. Between Confirmations, Holy Week liturgies at church(es), Easter Masses, First Communions (including my own daughter's) and my Mother's and sisters' attitudes...I.am.done.

Yet, there are so many other people going through worse things in their lives, I can't help but think "who the hell are you to feel this way?" People are losing their jobs, having health issues and going through some tough times and here I am...sad and overwhelmed. I have no right to feel this way. But, I do. One of my immediate stresses is childcare. It always is. I have asked everyone I know and for whatever reason Wednesday, April 1st is a very busy day. Fortunately, for me, my husband has been great. He is actually going to make more stress for himself by taking time off this week to "parent" the children while I go off to work. He's been so busy at his office that this is only going to backfire on Thursday and Friday. But, he's doing it anyway. For me and the children. I'm trying to take things one at a time but it's not easy. I keep thinking about the bigger picture and all the obligations--it's too much. I.need.air.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Double Gross?

Today I got the question every mom tries to avoid as long as possible...I got the question, "Mommy, what is sex?" O.M.G. Did she just ask me what I thought she asked me? Yessiree, she did. I wasn't quick thinking enough or I would have asked her what she thought it was. But, I thought a moment and answered, "It's something 2 people do when they are older and in love." Then, she said, "What else?" What, she wants more info? Well, sweetie, they kiss. Her: "On the lips?" Me: "Yes." Her: "Ewwwwwwwww! double gross!!" There I am thanking God I don't have to continue on this line of topic. Gotta love the mind of a 7 year old!

Thursday, March 19, 2009


There's a reason why my sisters don't know about my blog. It's so I can bitch when I need to. So, at the risk of stealing a blog topic, supposed well-meaning family members should mind their own business. I'm referring to hosting a small family "get together" in honor of my daughter's First Holy Communion. Two out of three of my sisters think I should extend the invitation to include extended family. Here are a few facts as to why I want the party to be small.

  1. It may come as a surprise, but I don't like hosting events. I know it seems odd especially due to the fact I'm inviting 8 second graders to my house for an evening in the near future. However, second graders are different from adults, for one thing I won't have to work as hard. As long as I have toys, music and food - they will be happy.
  2. Is it about the party or about receiving the sacrament? If I need to answer that one then I know you don't get it.
  3. If I invite my aunt and cousins, then I feel the need to include Mr. Hard-Worker's extended family (his aunt and cousins) making the guest list over 30 people. That is not a small number my friends.
  4. Do I need to repeat that I don't like hosting parties? Like most hostesses, I work before, during and after, thus, not getting the opportunity to enjoy the company and therefore the event.
  5. Whose house and party is it anyway? Hmmm, I wonder?
  6. Arghhhhhh! Haven't we been through this already? When Monkey Girl was Christened, I kept the gathering small, only having immediate family present. Yes, they argued back then too.

I'm tired and don't want to think about this anymore. However, if either of my sisters want to host their own event, they are more than welcome to do so. Maybe I seem like a party-pooper, but I'm the one doing the work here. I'm doing her party my way and if they don't like it, too bad for them. They don't have to come now, do they?

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

And Now I've Done It

As you can imagine (some of you know) being a mother of three children keeps you quite busy. If I'm not running to dance, swimming, Religion class, Brownies with the kids, I'm home doing laundry, cooking dinner, supervising homework...well, you get the picture.

There I was on the telephone this afternoon with Lola's mom (she's the very talented seamstress who made the costumes for the school's talent show, Mary), cancelling today's playdate. The only reason I was re-scheduling it was the fact I thought Mary was overwhelmed. I had no idea how right I was. The poor woman had just picked up her youngest from nursery school when she was in a car accident. I was listening to her story and thinking this could happen to anyone. The worst part was the fact her cell phone wasn't working properly. I felt for her. I easily get frustrated when I can't reach Mr. Hard-Worker about something important. Fortunately, for Mary, she finally was able to get in touch with her husband and he left work to help handle the situation.

However, that's not the end of the story. Before Mary and I hung up, I planned and invited her daughter to a "dessert party" on Friday, April 17th. I not only invited Lola, I called 2 other mothers and told them of the party. The idea was in my head and then out of my mouth in probably less than a minute. I know The Mayor will love the idea of having her friends over and hosting a "get together". I've already decided the guest list will be limited to the girls from the talent show dance. It's only 8 more children in addition to my three. I figure I'll serve ice cream and have fixings for sundaes, cookies, and if another parent wants to contribute brownies or something else - they are more than welcome to do so. Of course, I'll have hot cocoa and juice too. The girls can watch tv or a movie, dance and I'd like to be able to offer a craft for them to do and take home. Now all I have to do is write up some informal invitation to mail out.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Frustrated with a captial F

I'm not sure I want to go into the whole story (it's a bit long). Suffice it to say, I nearly quit one of my singing jobs today. Quite a few months ago, I asked for a raise and was told by my music director (CJ) that I deserved one. CJ said he would go to the pastor and ask for one on my behalf. You might be wondering why I didn't go to the boss. Well, this priest can be a bit Machiavellian. In addition, I know for a fact that two other people went directly to him and were turned down. So, I decided that maybe my chances would be better if I went through CJ, the music director.

It's possible you're thinking "Well, she works for the church. Some of what she does should be considered tithing." And, trust me, I'm not paid much. It's just something to help pay for gas and put some groceries on the table for my family. I also hold myself to high standards. My position as a cantor in church is very visible, therefore I must always dress appropriately and be well-prepared (even for pieces that are not pre-planned).

In the interest of full disclosure, I've been singing at this particular church for 12 years and have never gotten an increase, not even for cost of living. Having heard nothing, I wanted to follow up with CJ (making sure I wasn't forgotten). I waited and waited (for months), last night my husband flat out told me to give CJ my 2 weeks notice. He said, "Forget about Easter. This is ridiculous." I think that was the push I needed. This morning I left a message he should call me. CJ can be a bit passive-aggressive, so I made a point of saying "We need to talk, sooner rather than later." After I left the message I was so sick. (I have a sensitive stomach and don't eat anything when I'm stressed. I can't.) I needed to wrap my head around the idea that I may no longer be singing at that church that I've worked so hard at and lost precious time with my family. By the time he called me back, I had accepted that idea and I'd be done. To make a long story short (or even longer), CJ apparently cornered the pastor earlier today (convenient and coincidental? hmm) Anyway, he got some specific information regarding my raise. So, presumably I AM getting a raise, effective April 1st. How much? I don't know. Only time will tell.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

It's Over

The stage was set. Everyone was in her place. Their names were announced...then the music started and I stopped breathing. (I was nervous.) Yes, I'm talking about the talent show. My daughter smiled and bounced through the entire dance. She looked like she was having the time of her life. The girls wore pink poodle skirts (courtesy of Lola's mother), black body suits and high pony tails in their hair. They did the dance perfectly. I couldn't have been happier with the outcome.

Overheard: Walking toward the auditorium...an 8 year old girl asked her mother "Will we be the best?" Her mom answered. "It's not about being the best, it's about having fun." I hope she was being honest with her daughter and didn't answer that way for my benefit (since I was well within earshot and she knew it).

Btw, my daughter later admitted to having a great time on stage. I can't help but wonder if she'll join the choir or drama club in high school.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

This is it

Well, after all of the rehearsals and hours of hard work the nine girls dancing to "We Go Together" from Grease finally perform it tonight. My daughter is very excited. Actually, I think all of the girls are excited. But, they're also done - it has been extremely difficult to corral them into practicing. Last year, the seven original girls cooperated every moment of rehearsal. They were so eager to please us and do well. That was not the case this year. It was so much harder this time around. I guess it comes with age. Is it more of an awareness of what will happen? Is their lack of concentration a side effect of what's expected of them in class during the day? Is it that at the end of the day, they are tired and just want to let off steam? Is it a combination of all of these? I don't know.

Still in all, I am proud of the girls. They've worked hard. Dana and I made sure of that. Dana is the kind and generous person who did most of the coordinating of this whole endeavor. There's talk of what song the girls should dance to next year already...anybody up for "Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy?"