brand new day

an unexpected weekend. the days didn’t go according to plans. we had to work with what we had, which amounted to no cash and a debit card with my mom’s name on it (of course, we don’t share the same last name.)

it started on Friday. Shawn’s paycheck didn’t get deposited to his account (or 80% of the company’s, for that matter). so instead of Scout spending the weekend with Shawn, she stayed with me. we tried to make the best of the day, but unfortunately it started out with bad news. the short story: i have arthritis in both ankle joints. the right is much more severe, as there is not much cartilage providing cushion anymore. the quick fix is to wear a supportive brace every day, keep off my feet (yeah, right), and take Celebrex daily. there’s been much talk about having a joint fusion surgery. yes, another surgery. some of the good news included: a Lantern Moon owl measuring tape arrived, so did two skeins of Spud & Chloe Fine yarn. also, some good news in the child support department. (which i’m keep my fingers crossed for, because the end result might be a check that would help us immensely. especially in the housing department.) the night ended with being served dinner by James Gandolfini. that’s right. it was a delicious Italian meal too.

Saturday. i decided to take Scout down to Santa Monica, with a stop at a local yarn store. unfortunately, the customer service was lacking and i’ve made a decision to stop purchasing yarn there. i don’t want to spend what money i do have where people are rude. it’s the principle, you know? we turned the day around and went to the pier. but that’s where my mom’s debit card came in. Scout wanted to ride the roller coasters. but they wouldn’t accept her card since my i.d. didn’t match. so we ended up getting Strawberry Cheesecake ice cream cones, watching birds dive in the ocean, and looking through the telescope. it might have been the best 50 cents i ever spent.

pierviewing

{a look of wonder and amazement}

happy

{and smiles. lots of smiles.}

the day ended up with a check for $180 to deposit into the bank. that was nice to come home to, i tell you.

Sunday. church. shopping. McDonald’s. a short nap on the bus.

good thing for brand. new. days.

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{ scout }

it just so happens that Scout is away for the evening. spending time with her daddy. we will be reunited in the morning, as is our usual Sunday morning. she comes hopping out of the backseat of the car and yells “mommy” to me. she always has a big smile, especially in her brown, brown eyes. sometimes she comes directly home. sometimes we meet in the church parking lot. tomorrow will be no different. she’s a big girl now. she’s tall. very tall. she turned 6 years old about two weeks ago.

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she’s in Kindergarten now. it’s been a hard adjustment for her. she loves making new friends but she doesn’t understand why they have to go away. she has a hard time living up to her teacher’s expectations. she gets very upset if she doesn’t do it “perfectly”. she loves singing and dancing. you can tell, in her Winter Program, dressed in Christmas jammies. she has a lot of passion in her. sometimes she gets scared and tells me she “doesn’t want to die” because she doesn’t want to be away from me. but for the most part, she’s cheerful. happy. an angel. she remembers to say “thank you” to the bus drivers. she always gives Ms. Nancy (a Grandparent volunteer at the library) a hug, colorful cards, and pictures. and she loves finding a penny in the road to add to her piggy bank at her dad’s.

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scout. she loves pink, and purple, and green. we have an endless supply of composition books, Crayola crayons, washable markers, and colored pencils (thanks to a few generous friends, and a few generous strangers). Scout loves sweets. she eats a lot these days, and yet she only ways fifty pounds. just a few sacks of potatoes. she smiles a lot, nuzzles her head against me, happily gives away Eskimo kisses. she’s pretty proficient on the computer, especially playing Club Penguin and buying puffles. she just learned that she likes Bean and Bacon soup. her hair has finally grown back in from it’s original “trim”. now she wants to cut it short. she doesn’t like it everywhere. she’s growing up too fast.

i ♥ my stinkerbuggy.

…day in the life of…

waking up to the sunshine peeking through the blinds for the first time in five days.

the smell of Christmas trees as we walked past the lumberyard.

Scout waving the bright green bubble wand into the wind creating various sized bubbles.

finding gnome homes in the mushrooms growing on our neighbors yards.

a deliciously filled chocolate chip bar from the donut shop that sells the most heavenly French beignets.

eating McDonald’s chicken McNuggets for the first time in over twenty years.

finally balancing my budget online.

working on my plan to create a Kids Craft Club at the library.

visiting my old neighborhood park where the grass was a bright green and the leaves were falling from the branches in the chilly autumn breeze.

organizing computer files.

making out a weekly menu with every intention of cooking at home for the first time in two months.

 

 

365 days

it really has been an entire year since i’ve posted. 

twelve months. fifty two weeks. three hundred sixty five days.

some of the past year has been a disaster.

  • i started the year off needing to get a Restraining Order against the guy i was dating. the middle of the year was spent trying to put back the puzzle pieces of the life that Shawn and I was once shared. and the end of the year was me grieving because of the heartbreak of a man i thought i could trust for the rest of my life.
  • i tried going back to school in the Fall. i’d started out with 12 units which dwindled to 9, to 6, to 3, and then to none. i disappointed myself more than i could imagine.
  • in October i lost my apartment. a week later my car was impounded. some of it was due in part to the lack of Shawn’s financial stability in regards to child support. some of it was due to my bad choices. the end result was that the kids and i moved our belongings to a 5 x 10 storage and lived in a motel for seven weeks and my mom’s beat down RV with no electricity or water for a week.
  • i kind of lost my mojo. i was hospitalized three times. i stopped knitting for five months. i became too dependent on those little yellow pills that carry a short term cure for relieving anxiety. i lost 42 lbs this year, mostly from working out and walking more but also from the great amount of stress i’ve been dealing with on a daily basis.
  • Jem was officially diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome. he refuses to take any medications for the hyperactivity. he’s gotten much more physical and violent towards me and Scout. dealing with the middle school system was a nightmare, but high school has been worse as he’s been ditching classes after getting into an altercation in gym class. i question my parenting abilities much more now that he’s fourteen and hitting puberty.

but then some of the year has been absolutely spectacular:

  • Scout and i celebrated Christmas together at Disneyland, last year. it was a magical day. her big brown eyes lit up at the sight of Mickey Mouse. she laughed and giggled with other little girls while standing in hour long lines. she fell asleep on the way home, still holding on to her lit up balloon. it was well worth wearing the wrong shoes to walk in and the two bags of Goofy Gummy Ears that i ate.
  • i’ve spent more time giving back through my church. i joined the Women’s Ministry. i volunteered to teach arts and crafts during the week long Vacation Bible School that our church organizes every year (two hundred children this summer). sometimes i spend time with the homeless that come to our church Pantry when they come to pick up their baskets of food.
  • i’ve spent more time with getting to know Scout. she’s become a very grown up five year old girl. she doesn’t mind rescuing snails and making homes for them in a box filled with grass. she’s learned to make friends with different children despite an onslaught of racist and ignorant comments that have come her way. she makes the people she meets smile, whether it’s the bus driver, the grandparent volunteer who reads stories at our local library, or even her new Kindergarten teacher. i admit that the beauty she exerts makes me cry at times.

what dreams may come:

  • i was a week late but i was able to register in the Veterinary Technology program at my local community college and resume the courses that i didn’t finish from about ten years ago. i’m enrolled in 12 units, all of which i can take while Scout is in school and not have to worry about who will watch my kids so i can go to class and study. this is the opportunity i have been looking for to finish school.
  • i found a room for rent in the old neighborhood i lived when i met Shawn. there are a few obstacles that need to be tackled: my roommate and i didn’t know we could only have three people in the household. another is that the management company apparently wants to run my credit. obviously i’m hesitant about both. while i’m searching for placement for Jem, i really don’t know if i can find support fast enough. and i know that my credit is not up to par considering some of the financial choices i’ve made in the past year. i’m trying to remain hopeful that we will be able to sort everything out and that we can move past this, quickly.
  • i committed myself to volunteering for an animal rescue for the next six months. i will be helping to find homes for rescued animals in the Los Angeles area. 
  • i’m determined to learn from my mistakes and work past them this coming year. i want to keep my home. i want to continue my education. i want to separate myself from negative people and live a more positive life. 

after all. i have another three hundred sixty five days to change.

grateful

* my financial aid appeal was approved. i will be receiving a grant and loans to cover my expenses for the Spring 2012 semester.

* hot chocolate with mini marshmallows.

* Christmas shopping was actually pretty fun. still need to work on wrapping gifts when the kids go to bed tonight.

* a successful destash to help pay the deposit on an apartment we hope to be approved for back in Santa Clarita. {i found a one bedroom apartment in the same neighborhood as our old apartment for less rent than what i pay now. i applied for the apartment on tuesday and am waiting to hear back if we’ve been approved. right now they are working on Shawn’s proof of income. we should know, hopefully, on Monday.}

* madelintosh tosh merino light in “well water” for a new sweater.

* volunteer opportunities through our church all of December.

* popcorn, white fudge covered pretzels, hot chocolate with mini marshmallows, and the first six “Harry Potter” movies on DVD on a cold, windy Saturday night.

* taking Scout to visit Santa Claus and getting a new animal for her Build a Bear collection. then getting an email the next day for  a free animal. so now getting two animals for the collection, a black teddy bear named “Snow” and a black puppy dog named “Santa”.

depression

very rarely do i post about my depression. after all, it’s a fairly depressing subject. a concept hard to convey to someone who has never felt like they are drowning in darkness. five days of crying. crying because some days it feels like shawn’s ghost is just behind me, out of my reach. crying because things are not falling into place like a perfectly put together jigsaw puzzle. crying because nothing ever seems like enough to two fatherless children. today has been a crying free day. i’ve spent time online, spent time cleaning, spent time thinking. when a despairing thought comes to mind i try to distract myself. the days have melted together. i can’t explain the how or the why. i can not rationalize the what if’s and maybes. simply put i’m living in an alternate world where the word “divorce” can set me into a crying fit, clutching the stuffed owl he gave me before he walked out. other times it’s watching my daughter working in her workbook and i feel a sense of calmness rush over me. i’ve yet to achieve balance, but i’m striving for something better than the moments where i feel like drowning me.

sunday

attending church. reading books. taking a nap. crock pot dinner. pancakes, bacon, and sausage for lunch. dog digging in the blankets. cartoons. playing super mario brothers. knitting calligraphy. scary movies about big snakes. sewing machine. fresh squeezed orange juice. air conditioning blasting. pork loin for dinner. vegetables cooking. queen sized bed squeezed into the living room.