Saturday, December 22, 2007

After Twelve Hours Of Intermittent Labor (er... Make That 13!)... Let's See What You've Got Mrs F

It is 12:50 PM this is what Baby's stocking looks like:

This is my top priority now.
1:29 PM2:25 PM3:306:30
(appliques are not sewn on, but embellishments are, and the number and letter patterns are cut... still need to cut them out of felt and sew all the appliques on ...then I'm done!) We're going to dinner... be back soon!
12:20 AM (yes roughly 12 hours later!)12:35 AM Crafting genius strikes... note real grapevine twigs for arms (harvested from my wreath!)1:25 AM Mrs F decides to remove the snowdrifts... so much better!

Watch The Damn YouTube Video Or Else!

I am amending my warning... it is not "stupid" it is "hilarious"... it is not "too long" it is 3 minutes. Watch it. Kid's crazy laughing is contagious... and you won't be able to stop yourself from laughing along. I promise. Plus you get a really good taste of what Mr F looks and sounds like... entertaining in and of itself!

Friday, December 21, 2007

The Moment You Have All Been Waiting For

So yesterday I had no problem posting my little test video... today was a different story. So I am following Heather's lead and going the YouTube route for today. So my morning video is now up... you can watch it HERE.

And I'll reward you for your patience with this little gem:

Testing Part Deux

Alright I Can't Wait Anymore

I thought it would be fun to document every part of my life on my little Canon for you all... but Blogger is not cooperating and now I've got bigger fish to fry.

I just got off the phone with my old college roommate. This is not a good times holiday post so if you are not wanting to hear a major rant on abusive relationships then move along. Maybe sometime today my video will finally finish uploading and you can come back for the "fluff".

Okay let me just say I love my friend. Love her. We had great times in college and she is as much of a goof ball as Mrs F, which is a rare find. But she has two downsides. One, she talks non-stop, even though Mrs F is quite chatty her own self, my friend doesn't take a breath to ask you how you are.... EVER. If she is calling she is calling to talk AT you. Period. And she will do it for two straight hours. This gets old after the first twenty minutes. I don't think she knows anything that has happened in my life in the last 6 years. Seriously. She calls me several times a week. I have to screen her calls because she doesn't ever get off. I can have a screaming kid in the background and I can say "umm Kid is bleeding from her eyes and her arm is on fire!" And she will respond "okay just one more thing..." and then go on for another 25 minutes. I'm not joking (okay I am about the blood and fire... but you get the gist). The second downside is her husband. He is a dick.

My friend has been with her husband since she was 17 years old. He is 5 years older.. so the fact that they overlapped in high school already tips you off to the potential for mental issues on his part. But I'm of course getting ahead of myself...
Okay they dated all through her years in college and grad school. They got married one week after we did. We had been together a little over 2 years... they had been together for 11! Now it was clear even when we were younger that he was VERY controlling. The fact that she is Jewish and he was at one point a neo-nazi (I'm serious) is another little weird oddity that I've never been able to wrap my head around. Anyway he is unstable and a yeller and he flies off the handle if she buys the wrong meat... or is 5 minutes late.... or whatever. I spent a lot of time wondering WHY, WHY, WHY she was with him. WHY she would marry him (I know her parents have wondered this too)? I think partly the fact that she grew up with him kind of shaped her frame of reference about herself. I know at times she had thought of leaving him.... but she never did, and never will.

And listen I'm not uneducated to the cycle of abuse. I worked on a domestic violence hotline for years. I get it. I even can see the things she does to instigate it. I have not ever been able to figure out what made her choose this type of relationship... it isn't a model she grew up with. And although I am very aware that abuse happens in all socio-economic classes... I will say it was very unusual among the girls I was in college with. We were all smart independent types who chose to go to NYC for college. Getting yelled at by your boyfriend every night because you called a minute late... was not typical, or even heard of, among my friends. We would seriously just look at each like "what the hell is going on?!?".

She has had moments of awareness and then they pass. They are married now they have a little boy. They moved across the country and we only talk over the phone now. I have tried to make peace that this is her choice. That maybe he has mellowed. That hopefully he doesn't yell at their son. She will call and say something about it and I'm always like "you have got to be kidding me?" but I don't say anything... what good will it do? She is in it and at some point I'm not even sure she is aware that "normal" men don't act like that. I mean she gets that on some level but she just deal with her life for what it is. Sometimes I respect her ability to "rise above".. which is not the same thing as respecting her choice... but she is aware that her husband has a mental issue (most likely bi-polar) and that he has triggers and that when he is set off fighting isn't going to help. I could never do that. My mother has her own problems and as much as I can and do work to find a place of understanding inside of me.. I don't sit there and eat it... I'm compelled to get validation.

Now my friend's husband will never get help and either will she. She called today and after screening her first couple of calls this morning I accidentally answered it. I was glad I did. She was having a bad day. And believe me I want to be there for her when she does... but hearing what that entails and knowing she chose this life is hard for me listen to. Her sons threw up last night at 3 am. No fun and we've all been there. But what transpired in her house was just plain crazy. Her husband freaked out because her son wanted his mommy and ended up screaming at him to get out of his bed. Then he yelled at her and then went back in to yell at their sick 3 year old some more. So my worst fears were confirmed. He does yell at their son. Not that witness an abusive parental relationship isn't damaging enough! Let's be real clear... it is!

Anyway after that he stormed out of the house at 4 AM and never went back. Seemingly he went to work. Now she is calling me to ask me if she should take her son on a school trip. What? Seems like that wouldn't really be a priority... um with the throwing up... and the abusive dick. But apparently that is just me. So these calls always put me in a tough spot. Obviously she is calling because she needs support, but I cannot, CANNOT, pretend that I think this shit is okay. So I asked how her son had responded to his dad's freak out... and I was alarmed that she hadn't done anything to address it with him. And so I told her that it was unacceptable and that they needed to find a way to help her husband gain control of his emotions or give him an exit strategy BEFORE he exploded. She of course agreed but then went on to blame herself for "talking back" and escalating the situation.

And I get it... I get that in that moment she had a choice to eat it or get pissed. And at her own admission if she instigates it makes him madder but the explosion is faster and easier for her to deal with then weeks of bubbling over. And the peace I made with this situation is that she did chose it that she is an adult and on some level I of course think this is damaging to her self-esteem but I can't make her leave him or even want to leave him. But what pisses me off is that they should not have had children. I'm sorry. They shouldn't. It is one thing to love a man who you know is mentally ill and chose for yourself that you are willing to deal with what he dishes out. But it is not okay to have children and allow your partner to take it out on them as well. Period. They need help... he needs medication to stabilize his moods and they both need therapy.

I asked her if he ever has the self awareness to sit down and have a calm discussion about it. She said sometimes he does... but it has to be right after and incident or he will already have re-framed it in his mind as being her fault. And I get that too. I get that he lost it last night. I get that he felt so badly about yelling at their son that he had to leave. I get that he feels so badly about being out of control that he can't tolerate that feeling and has to see it as being her fault in order to live with himself.

So at the end I said to her "You know that it isn't okay. That if Mr F did that he would be out of the house. You know that whether he yells at you or he yells at your son... it is shaping the way your son feels about himself." What more can I say? She was still most worried about the stupid train ride for her son's school outing. She was worried that if she took him her husband would freak out on her for taking a sick kid. I suggested she really needed to think about her motivations. She said her son was really looking forward to the train. I told her that in a few years he would not remember the ride... but he would remember his Dad screaming at his mom because she took him. I just don't know. I don't even want to know. My heart breaks for that little boy.

This is the exact reason I had to take a break from counseling kids. I would work with these kids whose life experiences were un-freaking imaginable.. seriously, I won't even go into it because it is that bad, and their teachers and parents would get so frustrated that I couldn't "cure" them. And you just want to beat your head against the wall. No amount of Ritalin is going to fix your kid if you are going to continue to (beat them) (shoot up in front of them) (turn tricks in the living room). I just couldn't hold all that sorrow and devastation and heartbreak inside of me anymore. (And sorry I said I wasn't going to go there... and believe it or not that is NOTHING). And right now I just want to cry because it is so frustrating to be so helpless and to have no way to make a change. No way to hold up a giant mirror and say "LOOK AT YOUR LIFE"... stop worrying about the goddamn train ride and start worrying about your son.

She just called me back. She called to ask him his opinion on whether they should go on the train ride. He said "well, you already told me my opinion!" and hung up on her. She is going to go and told me there will be a blow out tonight if we go or if we don't go... so we might as well go. I didn't even know what to say, all I could say was "I hope it is not too bad tonight." God this just sucks... when the best you can hope for someone is that their night isn't too bad.

Abusing My Power

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Testing Testing 123

Please Tell Me...

I'm not the only one who has let a few things go this week.

My "Home Office":

My "Moblie Office":


I deserve a goddamn medal! I did that all in one hour!
No my car isn't clean yet... I'm not a miracle worker!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

You Are Making Me C-R-A-Z-Y

"I MEAN it... Stop. It.
I'm not laughing because I think it is funny... I'm laughing because you are making me crazy and I'm trying not to freak out."
Stay In There!

Is It Possible?

That I found my perfect fitting jeans in the Target Children's Department?

Christmas Decorating... Phase Two

When you are an overachiever and you can't hang your beautiful glass ornaments what do you do?

You spend a whole day making Swedish Pepparkakor to hang on your banister.

Monday, December 17, 2007

In Case You Were Wondering...

I have not made anymore progress on Baby's stocking not that I have anything to put in it anyway.

I will not be cooking dinner this week. period. I need the kitchen for cookies. Little Caesar's $5 Hot N' Ready... we're comin' for ya!

Sledding counts as exercise... and I won't be doing any more than that.

I have not wrapped a single present yet.

I have 50 more envelopes to address.

There is nothing I enjoy more than my 4 pm cup of coffee... okay there a few things.. my kids, world peace...

Gift cards for the 9-15 year olds is fine right?... Target?

Baby was up hysterical again last night... when one thing ends another begins... this morning I discovered the most horrific diaper rash I had ever seen... For real. Open sore style. Poor Baby.

Even if Kid can't read... she can *read* the logos on shipping boxes and figure out where they came from! Little Stinker!

Tonight I'm making ginger snaps for Kid's teachers.

I have managed to maintain my weight without calorie counting... and am really enjoying the freedom from constant food awareness!

A Tribute

"I've had the time of my lifeNo I never felt this way beforeYes I swear it's the truthAnd I owe it all to you"

Sunday, December 16, 2007


Seriously I can't even BELIEVE this just happened...

Mr F and I were talking about our sledding ramp, and the dangers potentially associated with it, at the back door then we went to the basement where Mr F sat down to do some work and I was yapping about something when I heard the sound of running water. Now I had been doing laundry all night so at first I thought it was the sound of the washing machine loading with water. Then I looked over and I realized with HORROR and DISBELIEF that Canine was peeing a HUGE, LONG, HORSE PISS right on the laundry. What The Fuck?!? Canine has got to be losing his mind! We were all just at the back door moments before this... he gave absolutely no indication that he needed to go out. And throughout the duration of the world's longest dog piss he was acting like this is where he is supposed to relieve himself. I was yelling his name and he didn't even flinch.. just proceeded to let it all out. Canine I hate you.

Walking In A Winter Wonderland

The Ways In Which I Have Been Wronged Today

Let's just say if you are a man you might want to skip this one. I am pissed off and I can't hold it in any longer. I am just shy of actually hurting someone!

Today is Sunday. We woke up to a HUGE snow. About a foot of heavy fresh snow. This is good and bad. We've had a pretty late winter for Michigan and it is about time we had a good snow and Kid is very excited to go sledding. But Mr F loves to shovel and get out the old snow blower and that can eat up a pretty big chunk of the day. And I don't really need to remind you that it is the weekend and that it is the only time when I might get a little time either to myself (unlikely) or together as a family so I don't have to bear ALL the child care responsibilities. I also don't need to remind you that I have a lot on my plate with Christmas coming up in NINE freaking days! And since I am a mom most of those things need to be done in relative secret.

So.... shortly after getting up our neighbor came by wanting to borrow our snow blower and in return he offered to do our driveway for us. Well that is GREAT since we could just go about our morning. But Mr F was jonesing to get out there and felt he was missing out on something. At some point I guess he couldn't take it any longer and actually went out. But here is the thing he didn't tell me he was going out. He didn't take the kids with him. The only reason I knew he was out there is because I saw him from the windows. At this point I'm not pissed.

A little while later Baby is ready to go down for a nap. I co-sleep with Baby and so putting her down is a little more involved than it might be if I didn't. I have to go up and lay down with her and nurse her and contain her until she finally gives in and goes to sleep. Sometimes this is quick and I'm back down in a few minutes. But more often than not this takes me about 20-25 minutes. And since she is very active and having a developmental explosion it is a fairly precarious situation. ANY little thing can snap her out of her drowsiness and then you are screwed. As usual on my way upstairs I remind Kid that I'm going up and I'll be up there for a few minutes and told her "this would be a good time for you to read quietly". Fast forward about 15 minutes.. I have just gotten Baby to fall asleep.... Kid opens the door (I am screaming in my head)... I begin frantically waving her away... she says at FULL volume "Mom I want to go sledding." Baby's eyes pop open (if I had a weapon Kid might not be alive to tell her side of things)... I reply in as hushed yet furious a tone as I can "GO. DOWN. STAIRS." Kid closes the door... I nurse Baby again...she is drifting off... Kid opens the damn door and says "Mom...." I cut her off and yell "GO DOWN STAIRS RIGHT NOW!" Now inside me I feel like shit for losing it and yelling at her... but I'm also furious because Baby is fully awake and she is the kind of baby who once awake is AWAKE.. the end.

I come downstairs and see Kid. She knows she's in trouble and she knows I'm pissed. I can tell and I feel bad... but I can't stop and so I actually yell at her again.. not YELL yell... but in a mad tone reprimand her. She's five.. and the truth is I was mad at Mr F and not her... but I plain old lost my cool and possibly my worst trait is that once I'm mad I need to harp on it for a while and really rub it in. Now I'm mad at Kid, Mr F, and myself. And you guessed it... it is all Mr F's fault!

I look out the door and see Mr F making a sledding ramp on the deck steps. Okay. That looks like fun and I'm sure Kid will enjoy it... but you know what she also would have enjoyed HELPING you make it. And guess what else?... you didn't have to do it RIGHT NOW. Oh boy my head could have exploded from anger. Because this is just so TYPICAL. I don't know about anyone else but I have NEVER just walked out of the house and started doing whatever the hell I felt like. I NEVER can even leave a room without having to say "I"m going to take a shower now... are you watching the girls?". And the discrepancy between our two levels of child rearing responsibility just makes me want to murder Mr F sometimes. I mean he walked out of the house without telling me... let alone asking me if it was a good time... and proceeded to get sucked into his snow shoveling mania and forgetting about EVERYTHING else that is going on.. and EVERYONE else. Must be nice having a brain like that. So I opened the door and gave him a piece of my mind and reminded him that Christmas is in NINE days and I have a stocking to make.. oh and I have done EVERYTHING related to Christmas so far... as usual.

Keeping Score:

ordered xmas cards: Mrs F
addressed envelopes : Mrs F
wrote xmas letter: Mr F...totally edited and rewritten by Mrs F
thought of and bought all the xmas presents and shipped them to Mr F's family: Mrs F
thought of and bought all the xmas presents and shipped them to Mrs F's family: Mrs F
thought of and bought all the kids presents: Mrs F
decorated the house: Mrs F
put the tree's lights on: Mr F
wrap all gifts: will be Mrs F
mail xmas cards: will be Mrs F
bake cookies: will be Mrs F
eat 95% of the cookies: will be Mr F
make Baby's stocking: will be Mrs F
murder Mr F on xmas eve: will be Mrs F
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