Friday, January 13, 2012

I'm proud of my brother.

Today, I dropped my brother off at divorce court.  It truly has been a long time coming.  They each suffered from addiction and were rather toxic together.  He said that while S- was trying to get the court to say that he was liable for the school loans that amassed, the judge said that he is not.  After court, he went to the bathroom as he said that he, "Wasn't interested in standing around and talking to the woman that he just divorced." 

He was supposed to phone me from the court house to come and get him.  I never heard from him.  Mom called, said that S- called and said that he didn't have a phone and needed a ride.  I went down, sat near the courthouse, he wasn't there and then I pulled out the section of my brain that thinks like my brother and realized that he was walking.  I went the way that I knew he would go and in about 10 minutes, I found him.  I pulled up and all he could do was smile.  "How'd you know to find me here?"  "I thought like you."  He finished up smoking his cigarette and I proceeded to drive him back to work.  On the way, we drove past his girlfriend's house.  He grew concerned when he saw that her sister was there.  Later, I found out why.  Long story short, through what I understand was a series of poor decisions, she ended up driving her new car into a ditch and totaling it.  Knowing the circumstances that happened, my brother opted to remove himself from the situation, as last time this type of thing happened, he landed in jail and was released with Lindsay Lohan jail jewelry.  (No, he didn't demand Chanel stickers for it, either.)  For the record, the charges have since been dropped and the protection order removed, but not before my brother sat in jail for 8 days. 

He stopped by the house on the way to shacking up at my parents only to have her sock him in the jaw. 

Good times.

He phoned me tonight.  I think he wanted to let me know that he is okay.  I talked to him a bit today on the drives that we made.  I told him that I'm proud of him for removing himself from the situation that he was in.  He said that he didn't want to go back to jail.  He said that he's trying to do good things in his life.  I told him that he needed to stop being Sisyphus.  (The whole rolling the rock forever thing and having nothing new happen.) 

There's this.  I was talking to my friend, Kay, this AM.  I was telling her about my brother, divorce court, his girlfriend wanting to be there and about how he didn't think it was such a hot idea.  I told her, "Kay, I wish the girl no ill will, but we seriously need to pray her away."  I found out what happened tonight and my mom said to me, "We need to pray her away."  I laughed and said that I told Kay that exact same thing.  Right before my mom called, I phoned Kay. "Kay, when I talked to you this morning about praying my brother's girlfriend away, did you pray?"  "Well, I did."  "Kay, he left her and I don't know what type of direct line you are running at your house, but you are good."  She laughed and said, "Well, I prayed about it, but not that hard!" 

I know that my brother does and continues to do stupid, stupid things.  He's my brother and I still love him with every pore of my being.  I will help him.  I will not enable him.  Today, I was transportation, some words (not so gentle) and a cheerleader.  To God, I am grateful for giving me the opportunities to help my brother out to make good decisions in a positive direction. 

Today ends and my brother is safe.  :with tears:  It's all I can ask for.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Weird things that make me scratch my head.

1.  Hubs is at a conference in Columbus today.  He had to go about a half hour north to then turn around to go south.  I feel very Willy Wonka everytime he has to do this.  You have to go forward to go back, right?

2.  Inventory is done-- for me.  Regardless to how many signs we have up on the doors and sandwich boards in the parking lots, posted on the internet in a few places and have had it posted on our counters for weeks, we still have crappy acting people all ticked because we are closed.  "But I came allllll the way from - - - (which isn't that far down the road) . . . "  I hate it when people do that.  They aren't even nice about it, either.

3.  Why the math program that K-'s school district has adopted is so completely dumb.  Instead of teaching kids to add 84 + 11 in a traditional way, they decide to give them a Hundred Chart.  Don't you think that it would be more advantageous to just teach them properly from the beginning?  I have K- adding things up in a traditional way, but so that she knows how to use the Hundred Chart, I have her double check her work.  Let's face it, they won't have the stupid chart with them for the rest of forever and it is dumb to teach them how to use a crutch from the very beginning.  We're working with basic math facts here which, halfway through the second grade, the kids should know.  It is the same concept of K-'s teacher last year not allowing them to count on their fingers.  You only have so many fingers!  This math program is for the birds.  Rrrr.

4.  I wore no make-up during inventory this week, yet it seems like my face is breaking out more.  Hmmm. 

5.  Because I believe that subconsciously, I was concerned that we wouldn't wake up in time to send Hubs off for his conference, I didn't really sleep.  The last I looked at the clock was at about 3 AM, then we were up at 5:15 AM to get him moving.  Caffeine, take me away!

6.  My mom called me yesterday to see if I could take my brother to court today.  "What for?"  "His divorce."  I went on to tell my mother that my brother hasn't contacted me in a sweet forever and the only time that I hear from him is when he needs something.  "That's why he wasn't going to call you.  He owns it.  He said that exactly."  She called him and he called me back, quite thankful for the ride (he is without license until March,) and I got on him about it.  I am taking and dropping him off.  I don't believe that I need to be there to witness the profanity that will be my soon-to-be ex sister-in-law.  I pray (quite literally) that Billy will hold it together, be respectful and behave as such.  The divorce is a long-coming thing that is truly something that needs to happen for both of them.  Finalization will be a doozy, though.  Look at it this way, it isn't like they have material property to divvy up.  They have the two kids, who seem to be settled in the homes that they are in.  As for the rest of it, well, drugs are a very bad thing.  Amazing how you can lose everything with addiction.  My brother is clean and has sworn that he will never drink and drive again, but I'm not so convinced about my SIL's status.  I pray good things for her life. 

7.  I was able to pass the two Britax Regent car seat boosters on to my cousin.  She also needed to borrow my butterfly cake pans and those caused her to leave a message on my machine, "No need for pepper spray.  If anyone comes after me, I'll just beat them with a cake pan!"  They are Nordicware (butterfly pan was on clearance at Target for 5.00 and the muffin pan was a gift), and heavy as all get out.  I called later to see if she had to use the "cake pan defense system."  ;)  Seriously though, I'm thrilled that we had a good home to pass the car seat boosters down to.  Turns out that they didn't have next car seat to move I- into, so the hand-me-down seats were something that they truly needed.  They were big and K-, at the ripe age of 8, had officially aged out of them (according to Ohio law), and they were taking up enormous amounts of space in the basement.  I did warn Jenny that I didn't clean them, but we aren't about letting K- have a buffet in the back seat anyhow.  Other than a few crumbs and some miscellaneous bits in the side stretchy junk pockets, the car seats are truly fine to put directly into use.  Hooray!  I even found where I put the anchors and tethers for the one car seat (they didn't work in Hubs' Tercel), and found that I had tied the directions to the bag, too.  Double hooray!

Shuffling onward to what the day holds.  Have a wonderful day!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Tales from the Trenches: Inventory-sminventory.

It's like A Christmas Story all over again.

Double beatloaf,
I hate meatloaf.

Only in my case it is:

I hate inventory.

We're a mom and pop.

We inventory by hand.


One person reads.

One person writes.

Each. and. every. thing.

We touch it.

We read it.

We dot it.

We log it.

It is mind-numbing. 

On a completely different story, my neighbor called to tell me that he made spaghetti squash for us.  He made an Alfredo half and a spaghetti sauce half.  I should be embarrassed to say that I just ate an entire half of a spaghetti squash.  I called to tell him how good it was and he said, "You ate all that?!"  Well, I ate and it was good and I was watching Dirty Jobs and before I knew it, I hit the bottom of the bowl. 

I'm wondering how half a squash is going to settle in my digestive tract. 

On another good news front (not my potential digestive distress, but a wonderful neighbor-made meal), K- reported that, "GOOD NEWS, MOM!  I CAN RUN AGAIN!"  Her foot is feeling a-okay, and that is great news.  "See, K-!  You did what Dr. P- told you to do and you are all better again!"  I was glad to hear it.

So, I'm off.  I've drawn a bath, my people will be home soon and I have some math to tutor K- through.  Apparently, she reports that it is rather tough. 

Have a wonderful evening!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Lovely weekendish things.

I've been a busy girl, leaving me with little time to blog. 

1.  Friday was the first day of the book pass for 100 Book Challenge.  I had five kids that earned books that were able to come down.  From now through the end of the year, I will be doing the early Friday morning gig.  It was nice to have the break, but I'm glad to share in the successes of the kids at school.

2.  K- had her 8 year check on Friday.  I was glad that we had that appointment already, as when she got off the bus, she was limping.  Turns out that she was playing with the kids on the playground, ended up tripping over a ball that inadvertently rolled her way and she cranked hard on her ankle.  She was in a lot of pain and it was confirmed that she did not break it.  However, it was one of those, "Go home and keep it up with ice."  Advil, which isn't often used, was administered.  I tell you, if we hadn't had the appointment, I would have probably ended up in the ER.  We were able to discuss K-'s growth which is, "On her same curve."  She is 4' 4" and no doubt will be passing me up very soon.  Stomach aches were discussed and while it is, "Probably a part of her personality," since we discussed her anxieties about school and whatnot, if they continue, it was suggested that we keep a food journal.  She is healthy and that is a great thing.

3.  Hubs' exhibit at work had been featured in two papers (he was interviewed for them) and a Cleveland station had come out to interview him.  He passed them on to his boss (he was wishing that he knew about the interview since he hadn't shaved and said that he would have worn nicer clothes), so he panicked and had K- and I come out to volunteer for 4 hours on Saturday.  We had 110 people while we were there, which was a good group, but Hubs was afraid that he would have 500 people with only him and a volunteer.

4.  We're learning more and more about the Methodist church each week we attend.  This week, they explained how they observe Epiphany.  I never knew what it was, but now I know. 

5.  I made a rockin' pot of ham and bean soup for dinner for Sunday and K- made a lovely batch of cornbread.  Yum!

6.  Even though it was only 38 F, Hubs washed the cars.  The road salt was beyond horrible.  It was sunny, so at least that part cooperated.

7.  K- and I were able to enjoy the first two episodes of Little House on the Prairie's Season 1.  (Hubs bought it for me for Christmas.) 

We had a fantastic weekend.  We hope that you did, too!