Sunday, November 6, 2016


While we wait for Cai's dr appt (next week - ugh), I have to remind myself this, very often.

It's hard to see her struggle and get frustrated when she's not 'getting it'.  I get mad at myself b/c she's an amazing kid.  And I know this.  Yet, for some reason, I always want her to be more.  Not for me, but for her.  I want her to not struggle with school b/c I see how tiring it is for her.  I want her to be less shy, b/c I see how hurt she is when she's not included (b/c she won't put herself out there). 

God, give me strength.

I can't believe Thanksgiving is 2 1/2 wks away!!  And Christmas is 48 days away!  Damn.  I hate how quickly times goes once Halloween hits.  I wish it would slow down.

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I hope you have a great week! 

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

The last first...

One of many last first's happened today….Bryleigh lost her 1st tooth.  Sure, we have already had a lot of last firsts, she walked, she talked, etc...but this was big for me.  Maybe b/c I'm about to turn 40?  But this seemed like a huge milestone that makes me a little sad.During the tooth pull (which was very traumatic for both of us – she was acting like I was trying to murder her and after thought it was awesome her tooth was out, while I felt devastated my baby is growing up), I was sweaty and annoyed b/c she wouldn’t let me pull it.  It was hanging on by a thread and I didn’t want her to swallow it or lose it at school and not have something to put under her pillow.  Cadence swallowed one once, which I didn’t care about b/c at that point, we were about $20 deep with the tooth fairy.  But for the FIRST…well, I wanted her to go through the whole routine!

Anyway, after it happened, and I was driving to work, it occurred to me, this was the last-first tooth my children would have. 

Sure, grandbabies will lose teeth and I will be excited for them…but this is my baby…and she’s not a baby anymore and proof of that is in a baggie under her pillow. 

I may have shed a few tears on my way to work.  Hell, who I am I kidding, I bawled (my meds are not right) and then I thanked God for letting me have that moment. 

We tried so hard to have babies and lost more than are here before we finally had ours.  And the pregnancies were hard…and Bry’s labor was scary. 

So even though it was the last-first tooth that my babies will lose, I am thankful to have experienced it.

she thought she was going to be gushing blood...


Tuesday, October 25, 2016


No – don’t send help – this is all about the food.  I remember when I was little, my grandparents used to make a meal that my grandpa called SOS or shit on a shingle.  I know that for years my mom made it as well.  I know I liked it and I even recall making it after moving out.

But after I stopped eating red meat (16 yrs ago), I made a revision to the recipe, but I couldn’t remember what it was.  Then my memories started to collide and I felt like this was the recipe all along….

I googled the recipe, but all I could find were recipes that made their own roux (which I later found out is how my grandpa made it)…and I know at 25, I was not making my own roux!  Hell, I don’t even want to make it right now.  So I kept searching, positive cream of mushroom soup was involved.  I gave up and asked my mom how she makes it.  She said she uses brown gravy for hers.  Nope, not how I have made it within the last 16 years.

I continued to search for a recipe similar to what I (sort of) remembered.  The problem is, my memory sucks.   Finally, I found one that was close to what I would make.  I played with it a little bit, but in the end, it turned out pretty yummy.  Dennis ate about ½ of the mixture, so that’s gotta be a good sign, right?

1 lb of turkey burger, crumbled
2 cans of cream of mushroom (low sodium) soup
¾ can of milk
Salt (to make up for the low-sodium soup) & pepper to taste

Once turk burg is cooked and crumbled, add soup & milk to frying pan, cook on low/med until it becomes a nice gravy, add S&P, stir well and let simmer on low for about 5 mins.

We serve with white bread.  We put one piece down, put some of the mixture over it, then add the 2nd piece of bread & add a little more mixture.  Serve with some mixed veggies and enjoy!


Monday, October 24, 2016

Possible hoarder status...

Meet Molly. She's the newest member of the SD household.

How did this happen, you ask? goes like this..

I answer calls two days a week for a local animal rescue. The majority of the calls are people that have found a stray cat(s) or need to surrender their cat. It breaks my heart. Some people are rude, they say, 'um, you can't take the cat? '
‘We can’t’
'Well, now what am I supposed to do? '
I feel like saying, ‘um, be a responsible pet owner and figure out how to make it work.’ But alas, I just try to point them other directions, praying for the poor kitty in the situation.
Well, last week I rec'd a call from an elderly woman who was very choked up during the message. She explained she had to rehome her declawed, fixed, chipped cat b/c her granddaughter is highly allergic. She started to cry at the end of the call and hung up. She called back a few mins later, leaving another mesg, apologizing for cutting off before leaving her phone #, she started to cry again, letting me know she was so sorry for hanging up, she just hated the thought of putting her cat to sleep.
I was choked up after listening to her 2 mesgs. I told the girls about it that evening and they both thought it was sad too. They said, 'why don't we bring her home,' I said, 'oh Daddy would be mad...'
So Dennis got home from work and I said, 'listen to these 2 messages.'   He said, 'oh, that's so sad.' Then I said, 'uh - you have to call her and tell her we can't bring the cat into the program b/c we are full.' He said, 'what, why? '
I said, 'I can't do it, I'll start crying.'
Bry leans forward and says, 'Daddy, why don't we bring her to live with us?' He said, 'we don't need another cat, you don't change the litter,' to which Cai chimed in, 'no - I do - every week. And we scoop in btwn.'
I had to bite my lip to keep from smiling. I said, 'look, it's fine, but I can't call her and tell her, will you please?' He just gave me an annoyed look and said, 'just tell her we will keep it and if her granddaughter moves out or whatever, she can have her back.'
WOW - that's a really good idea! HA! When I called her, she started crying, which made me choke up again.

It was funny b/c my friend had said to me a few days before, 'how many cats do you have?'  I said, '3',  she said, 'damn, I have more than you (she just got her 4th), I may be a hoarder.' (Fantastic, people judge the # of pets they have on how many I have. I may have set a precedence over the years of fostering).
I laughed at her and said 'probably!!' Annnndddd then 4 days later I have a 4th cat. Dammit. Karma. I shouldn’t have laughed at her.
When I told her about Molly, she said, 'yes! That means I’m not a hoarder….'
I said..'or it means we both are! Hahaha!'
The day I picked up Molly, the lady was teary eyed and continually thanked me. She was a small lady, probably in her late 70’s or early 80’s. She was very sweet and gave me two big hugs, telling me she was so appreciative of this. I smiled, all the while thinking of how big of an idiot I am. Ugh..4 cats. I asked her as we were loading Molly into the crate, had she been around kids, dogs, other cats? No, no & no.
Awesome – sounds like we are the perfect family for her. Various children in & out of our house, a dog & 3 other cats. She’s going to be very pleased when we get her home.
She didn’t make a peep while we drove home. She did a lot of hissing and growling at Blitz and the other cats once we got home and brought her out of her crate – but she’s slowly adjusting. She likes to sleep with Cadence at night, she isn’t a fan of Bryleigh (maybe she senses Bry is a dog-whisperer!) and she still hates Blitz.

She sees Blitz in the kitchen - she's not amused

No more cats for us. We are at capacity. And since the two oldest are only 8, we have many years of being a 4 cat household.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Sunday Funday!

J/ was actually Saturday Funday, but it most definitely doesn't have the same ring to it as Sunday. 

Our Saturday started out as usual, house cleaning, laundry folding, etc.  Dennis works 7-3:30, so it's just the girls & I working around the house.  Once the house was clean, we ran to the store for a few things, picked up a fun box of pumpkin shaped cookies for a Halloween party the girls were invited to.

I dropped them off at said party and I headed home to switch loads and get ready for Jody & Ron's wedding! YAY!

After I finished switching loads, I ended up picking up Lisa & Taevion so they could ride with us out to the wedding.  Dennis picked up the girls from Morgan's and headed over to pick up Cadence's friend that was staying the night.  Finally, we were able to head to the wedding.
It was at Jody's aunt & uncle's house, and it was in the country. As we were driving out there, we passed a kid, maybe 9 or 10, with a scary ass mask on, standing at the end of his yard, near the road, VERY slowly waving at us as we drove by.  He was extremely creepy.  Lisa was freaking out.  HAHA.

The wedding was awesome - Jody looked beautiful!

We didn't stay too long, we wanted to get over to the Folklore Fest since it ended at 9.  When we got there, it was still daylight (usually we get there as it is getting dark) and it was WARM!!  I honestly don't think it's ever been warm.  We are usually freezing, sipping hot coffee & standing in front of the fire to try and warm up.  Everything aches by the time we climb into the car b/c we were shivering.
But not this time.  This time was perfection.  They even added some new activities, one was the spooky trail - it was pretty awesome.  I can't wait for next year!

When we got home, we threw some frozen pizzas in the oven and the girls decorated some cookies.  After we ate, watched about a 1/2 hr of tv and cleaned up, it was 10:30, so I headed to bed.  The girls were playing in the bedroom and they weren't being loud, so I let them stay up.  I was asleep within seconds of lying down.

When the real Sunday Funday rolled around, it was anything but fun.  I had to wake the girls early to get ready for Religion, that was pleasant..I assume it was close to midnight, if not after, by the time they fell asleep and here I was waking them less than eight hours later.
The plan was to drop off Cai's friend & then take them to Religion, but of course, we were running late (story of my life) and I had to take the girls first.  After I dropped off her friend, I ran to the store, grabbed a few things, picked up the girls and we ran to my work to anonymously start the 'you've been booed' fun at my work.  I would have taken it all in early Mon morning, but let's be serious, I would never make it before the people I was 'booing'.
We went to Whitney's to drop off clothes for her & the kids that she had left at our house.  The trip was crummy b/c it was raining and it takes about 35 mins to get there.  But I made it a little more enjoyable with a VERY scary story!  The girls were enjoying it so much they were bummed when we got home and the story ended...mid-scare!

When I walked in the door, I wanted to just relax, but there was cheer practice & dinner to make, so I kept it moving.

That evening, when everything was done and I finally had a little time to relax, I opened my Nook and picked up where I left off in 'My Commander'.  While the book isn't exactly what I like to read.  The pace and lack of buildup was a downfall for me, but overall, for an easy, amusing read - I enjoyed it.

Now it's Friday and we have a weekend full of soccer tournaments.  Maybe we can sneak in making popcorn balls...but mostly - I will be enjoying the fall weather and tv movies!  I hope you have a great weekend, too!

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Shutterfly Christmas cards

Looks like Shutterfly is making Christmas a little less expensive!  10 free cards are available for purchase right now!  Use code FREE10 but, you have only until Sunday 10/23/16 before this awesomeness expires!

Happy Halloween!   Merry Christmas! 


This is my 400th post.  Wow.  It took nine YEARS to reach 400.  Roughly 3,466 days and I finally hit 400.   Well, at least I didn't give up.
I know some people reach 400 in just over a year, if they’re really dedicated…but for me, this seems like a milestone.  I feel like I should have something of significance to blog about…but really, I can’t think of something.
Maybe it will just be a bunch of random thoughts, stories and junk jumbled into a barely coherent post…yea...that sounds like my life, so why not?

First random thought, or question, if you will…how do you parent an adult bi-polar child?  I am truly at a loss.  Dennis is very patient, but is quicker to lose his shit with her, than I am.  I honestly feel like I have taken the time to learn more about the disease than he has.  He feels like it’s used as an excuse, though, I will say, SHE has never used it with us, I have always used it in her defense btwn Dennis & myself.  He thinks she’s immature (true) and needs to grow up (true to a point) and that telling her when she’s acting ridiculous will make her grow up.  He doesn’t realize the behavior is going to repeat itself b/c she doesn’t realize what she’s doing until after she's already done it.  She needs professional help and to stay on her meds, but she doesn’t.
Whit is good about talking to me when she’s upset, and also when she thinks she can ‘bi-polar’ me into giving her something.  She doesn’t know, I know what’s happening…or maybe she doesn’t realize she’s doing it.  She’s called/texted me upset and crying, saying she doesn’t want to turn into her birth-mom.  I listen and try to console her.  Nine out of ten times, she cries and we hang up when she’s calmed down…but there is always that 1 percent when she talks about money.  She never comes out and asks me for it, but I can hear her tone and tell she’s maybe suggesting it without suggesting it.  

But honestly, that’s not even something I worry about.  So what, she wants to ask me to borrow money…but she knows I’m not going to give it up.  If she needs diapers, I will buy diapers, if she needs lactose free milk, I will buy it…but cash…no.
Back to my question…how do I get through to her?  She is always looking for that next, ‘high’.  Not literally (well, sometimes it is), but it’s more the excitement of a new relationship, a new place to live, new people in her life that she can share stories with and maybe build her forever, happy home and life with. 
I know she longs for a happy ending, but she is too impatient to build it, as most bi-polar people are.  She needs instant gratification and she takes it at the cost of her children.  Not intentionally, of course, she truly loves them.  But nonetheless, she is hurting them.  The constant moving (6 times in 9 months in just 2016!), the lack of stability, the constant introduction of people she doesn’t know well.  She leaves the babies with them and doesn’t take into consideration, the babies can’t protect themselves!  They are two & one years old – what are they supposed to do?  Say no? Stop any abuse that may be happening?  Tell someone? They can’t even speak!  The thought of anything happening to them frightens me to the core.  We love them so much.  How do we protect them from a distance?  When she lives with us, we can, but when she jumps from place to place (especially when the place isn’t local), how do we keep them safe from the dangers she doesn’t contemplate?  How do we make her understand the danger she is putting them in?  If she were to lose the children, I think it might push her over the edge.  Having lived in various foster homes until she was adopted by a family she didn’t get along with, I don’t think she could handle that possibly happening to the kids if they were put in foster care.  She has a lot of baggage, from witnessing her mother’s suicide, to abuse, to her own mental problems.  What is the right path to help her?  Let her continue to do her own thing, without pointing out what could end up bad (it doesn’t really matter if I do, anyway, it goes in one ear and out the next before I even finish) or tell her and harp on her and TRY to force her into doing what is right? 
I feel like I’m fighting a losing battle.  I think (HOPE!) she cares about the things she is doing, I just don’t think she realizes the long term effect of it.  It makes my heart hurt.  So, I implore you…how do YOU parent your bi-polar, adult child?

Random thought, why don’t we eat dinner for breakfast and breakfast for dinner, since dinner is supposed to be light?

If you could see inside my brain, when I’m focusing on each of my children, it would probably look like a brainstorming cluster, similar to what you use when you’re writing a paper..

You would see a bubble that says ‘Cadence’ and around it, bubbles coming off of it that say ‘ADHD’, ‘medicating’, ‘school; ‘learning disabilities’ ‘happy’ ‘socially awkward’ ‘kind’ ‘helpful’ ‘needs fixing???’ ‘am I doing it right?!’ ‘how do I help her?’ ‘am I doing too much?’ ‘am I messing her up?!!’

This girl is the sweetest thing you could ever meet.  She is always willing to help, she uses her manners (most of the time), she always has a smile to give, but her ADHD and immaturity (mostly socially) scares me.  I can’t be there 100% of the time, so how do I help her?  How do I guide her to act more mature without hurting her feelings?

I was watching a video on her youtube channel (it’s shared btwn her & 2 friends) and listening to her speak vs her two friends speak, worried me.  They are such amazing friends to her, but as they get older, will that continue?  Will they want to remain close friends with her if she’s socially inept?  I remember the first few years of her being in school.  Every conference, I was informed she didn’t have any friends and she was usually alone or always offering to help the teacher.  It made me sad.  3rd grade, when she met her first, real bff, was the first conference I didn’t hear that.  The following year, her 4th grade teacher informed me she was once again ‘friendless’ as her BFF was in a different class.

It’s hard to hear that.  I really try not to be a helicopter parent.  I am probably more overbearing than most parents, especially in my family, but I also know what my kids need and are capable of, so I try to make sure they are pushed to and actually working at their full potential.  I don’t want them to rely on me for everything, I want them to be independent.  It’s just hard to watch, Cadence, in particular, when she’s not grasping what her friends are saying or she’s acting much younger than her age.  Her two friends, N & N live minutes from each other and are able to get together regularly.  Cadence knows that and I think it’s starting to upset her.  She is starting to feel left out.  However, I’ve seen her w/them and I’ve seen them ignore her when Cadence isn’t ‘keeping up’.  Cadence doesn’t have crushes, she doesn’t care about boys, she doesn’t care about fashion or who is talking about who….she does like watching youtube videos, which I do not like her to do, but on the other hand, I feel like it may help her understand more things socially…ugh.  Parenting is ridiculous and it can make me so happy and so sad…all at once.
How do I help my girl act more socially mature?  Maybe I wouldn’t be so focused on it, if she didn’t remind me of her cousin, who, is also learning disabled and socially behind.  I know it makes no sense that I would compare Cai to her cousin and not her sister, but when I hear Cadence speak, make certain faces, say particular phrases, I hear/see her cousin and it frightens me to think in 8 years, Cadence may end up like her cousin (a teenage parent that didn’t graduate high school who is behind socially and unable to understand or even say (literally speak them) certain words). 
I miss my dad….I miss his smile, his laugh…him yelling at the Bills while they play on tv.  He lied…stole money from my mom, he cheated, he was not always a good husband, but he was (mostly) a good dad.  Sometimes I hate him, what he did to my mom, to our family…but the good memories take over again and my heart aches for one more phone call…

How I felt this morning.


As long as I’m talking about the other two kids, I might as well talk about Bryleigh too….Oh Bryleigh.  I am telling you, that girl is going to be a force to be reckoned with as she gets older.  Already I cringe at certain things she says or does.  She already thinks boys are cute, she loves fashion and makeup and she's only 7! she likes her hair a certain way and if you’ve done something she doesn’t like, she will let you know.  She’s bossy and critical and funny and sweet.  She LOVES animals and sometimes, I swear, she’s a dog whisperer.  She isn’t as confident as I would have thought she would be considering her other attributes, but she does try her hardest.
I definitely don’t worry about her socially or educationally the way I do Cadence, which is a relief, but I do fear the teenage year, lol.  I know she’s going to be a handful, I just pray we still love each other once she gets through it – haha. 
I love watching her play soccer or cheer – she loves sports and it shows. 

Hey – maybe even a little blog time for Dennis.  He always gets shafted in my posts… He’s not a social media fan.  He has a facebook, but mostly it’s so it can be linked for him to get more points, etc in game apps.  Otherwise, he’s not actually on the site.  He doesn’t like blogs, he prefers me not to share so much, he doesn’t want his pictures taken or shared, he is more social than me as far as talking to people, but holds back from online media.  He thinks it’s too much work.  Whatever, the more I write, the less I have to talk to people which makes me happy – hahaha.  But for real - how can I only have 400 posts.  I should be at like 40,000.
Dennis broke his foot at work a few months ago and has been having some problems with his 4th & 5th toes.  They won’t bend and the entire outside (near his pinky toe) keeps swelling.  He had a MRI last week and goes for his results today.  I really hope they can figure it out so he can get it fixed or figure out a way to live with the pain.

Did you know 13 Nights of Halloween started on Freeform (formerly ABC Family)?!  This makes my heart sooo happy!!  I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Halloween.  It may be my most favorite time of the year.  Watching Hocus Pocus makes me all warm & fuzzy.  The best kind of evening for me is when it is a Fri or Sat, around 7ish and it’s dark, chilly and windy outside…you can hear the wind howling and leaves scattering across the pavement…Sitting on the couch with Dennis & the girls, covered in a warm blanket, with all the lights off watching a scary (kid scary) movie.  Those are the moments I want to last forever!

Sooo…you made it to the end of this lengthy post…and look - Grover isn’t at the end of it…j/k - here he is! 

So..thanks for reading the pure randomness that makes up my brain.  And if you have any advice for my parenting life – it is all greatly appreciated!

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Apparently someone farted on my pillow....

Yesterday morning I woke up and was unable to open my left eye.  Panic set it, like, what the hell is going on?
I pried my eye open, which hurt and was a really stupid idea...turns out, I was the recipient of pink eye.
Bro.  My kids do not have it, why do I?  How did I get this annoying infection, if not from my children?!

The itching, the soreness, the annoyingness.  Ugh.

Anyway, when I got to work this morning, I was informed you get pink eye when someone farts on your pillow.  Say what, now?  I have never heard of this, but I immediately called Dennis and asked him if he had been farting on my pillow.  The complete quiet coming from his end of the phone, led me to believe he wasn't aware of this either (or he would probably fart on my pillow whenever he was mad at me).  I explained what I was told, he started laughing.  He said that's gross, but maybe Blitz is the pillow farter/pink eye giver.  Jerk.

The looks I rec'd at work were not warm & welcoming and it was clear no one was happy to see me there...hey, I would have rather stayed home in bed, but I have a lot of things on my task list that are overdue and I started I'm no longer infectious...probably.

I figure if it can stick around until Friday - I won't even need to dress up for trunk or treat...I'll just go as a pink-eyed Cyclops.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Whatever Lola wants, Lola gets..

When my wonderful friend, Val, texted me and asked if I could watch her baby, Lola, while they went to Disneyworld, I said of course!  I knew Lola could be a bit on the standoffish side when she meets you, but I knew we’d get through the week with no huge problems…and we did.

I got to Val’s to get Lola and as I was opening the door, she immediately started barking.  I was talking in my baby voice, saying Hi Lola!  Are you ready to come over for a slumber party?  Her return bark made me believe that in fact, she was not ready to party the week away at my house.

She was in her crate, so I unlocked it and called her out, enticing her with ‘wanna go outside?!’.  No, she didn’t.  She just continued to bark at me.  After about 3 mins, I opened the side door of her crate, hoping she would come out one of them.  Nope…

I was standing by the front door and she FINALLY left the crate, by quickly running and hiding under the table.  Ugh.  So, I moved all the chairs and scooted the table…she then ran and hid under an endtable.

Really Lola, this is how we’re doing this?  Everytime I would go near her, she would bark at me.  I knew she was scared.  I took her leash and looped it so that when I could get close enough to her, I could wrap it around her neck.

After about 10 mins, she came out and jumped on the couch next to me.  I tried to pet her, but she declined the loving.  After a few mins, I was able to move quickly and get the leash around her neck.  She immediately ran to the front door, finally ready to go out.

Thankfully she walked with ease and jumped right into my car.  By the time I had walked around to my side and got in, she decided I we could be friends and let me pet her.  We headed over to pick up Cai from practice, and as she climbed into the back and reach forward to pet Lola, she was informed (by Lola) they weren’t friends yet and not to touch her.  HAHA.  I could tell that this was going to be a fun week.

Once we were home, I had Cai bring Blitz around back to meet Lola.  He wanted to play and she was a little intimidated…but after a little bit, she started running around with him.  She also had accepted Cadence as part of the group.

We relaxed the rest of the evening, with Lola sticking close to me, nervous about her new surroundings.  When Dennis got home, he had to wait for her to induct him into the club.  It took about a half hour.  He even tried bribing her with chips!  She would steal the chips and run and hide and eat them.  He was offended. 

The week went much smoother than I thought.  She did accept all of us and liked to cuddle.  At night, she hogged the bed, but she was well behaved.  The only thing she did that drove Dennis crazy was jump at him when he tried to come to bed at night (good girl!).  She wasn’t being aggressive, she wanted to play.  As soon as he would lay down, she would run up to the head of our bed with us and start playing with him.  For 5 mins he would argue with her that it wasn’t play time, it was sleep time, all the while, playing with her. 

The only disagreement we had was I wanted Lola to stay in the crate while I was gone. She apparently disagreed. When I got home I went to let her out and she had already let herself out and was sleeping in my bed. I said, Lola, you're naughty. She barely glanced at me as she jumped down and walked out to the couch and laid down.
Clearly She didn't care about my opinion.

When I finally took her home the following Tuesday evening, I told her she better remember me and not try and eat my face off the next time we see each other.  I texted Val later that evening and asked how she was doing once they all got home and she said fantastic – she ran out of the cage and jumped in Val’s bed and went to sleep!