Tuesday, February 24, 2009


I turned (ahem) 40 this year (cough cough). It was a little more difficult than I thought it would be, but I anticipated that it might be, so I spent the last year commenting (when asked my age) "I'll be 40 in September." Seemed like I might get kinda used to it if I said it umpteen zillion times. And, honestly, I think it helped. I still write (ahem) when disclosing my age, but it doesn't really bother me.

I have a dear friend here in Las Vegas named "D" and today is her birthday. She is (ahem) 50 today. We were supposed to go out to dinner with D and her hubby tonight, but her hubby called this morning and cancelled because D is too depressed about the whole shebang. I, being the control-freak that I am, tried to convince him that going out was the perfect antidote to depression, but he held his ground and it's all cancelled.

**My control-freak tendencies run deep, and I have a deep and abiding conviction that I am always right, so this was hard for me to take. Just ask Divine Hubby!**

I then tried to convince him to let me come over and give D her birthday present to cheer her up. He kindly, but firmly said D is in bed, has been all day, and that "It's just not a good time, STQ."


I truly believe if D's hubby would let me come over, I could help her climb out of the pit she's in. But, you know - it's not really my decision, is it? (again, harumph) I don't like it when things are out of my control. Or when people don't take my oh-so-brilliant advice as the gospel which it obviously is. :)

Maybe STQ has just a teensy bit too high of an opinion of herself? Yeah, maybe. It's been suggested before. But, it's absolutely out of love and concern for my good friend D. If I were in a birthday-induced pit, I would want every friend I ever had to show up, bring me presents, drag me to dinner, ply me with girly martinis and convince me that 50 is the new 30 or something. (Remember that when I'm under the bed crying in a deep blue funk 10 years from now, ok?? )

Anyway, say a prayer for my friend D. She is such a loving, giving, generous, warm and wonderful woman, and I am very sad that she is taking this birthday so hard.

Monday, February 23, 2009

On not getting a job today

As most of you know, I am a substitute teacher. This job has its perks, and its drawbacks. At first, I didn't enjoy it at all. Since I've been doing it for 4-5 months, I have learned how to make it better. You take the jobs you want and NEVER EVER take the jobs you have learned you hate. Makes you life easier.

Its perks are that if your child is ill, you are ill, or something comes up, you simply don't take a job. What other position would allow that?? Um, none. Also, I get to spend the day with some amazing people and some amazing kids. I say that because I've learned where the amazing people and kids are and where they are not.

I have not been kind to our local public school district on this blog. I still believe that it is in our best interest for ME to immerse myself there so Chase does not have to be immersed there. In general. But, through subbing, I have met some truly wonderful, caring and amazing teachers. I'd like to make a little "STQ school" and hire those fantastic teachers I have met to teach Chase. Unfortunately, I couldn't really pay much, so I doubt that would work out well...

Today, the only jobs available were:

1. Teaching English at the local juvenile detention facility. (Um, I ain't doin' that under any circumstances and God bless whoever takes those jobs.)

2. A Boys' PE job. (Can't do that - cause I ain't a boy.)

3. A Severely-Emotionally-Challenged (SEC) job at a high school. (I've subbed there before, but today it started at 7am, and time-wise, I can't get Chase to school in time to teach that class. But otherwise, I'd take it.)

And that's about it. There was a specials job this morning at an elementary school, but through the magic of the internet, someone else got it before I did.

So, I'm hanging out here today. And it's ok. I'm hoping for something tomorrow, and I already have jobs lined up for Wednesday and Friday.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Today's post is brought to you by Kleenex...

I subbed today in a preschool autism class. What an incredible whirlwind of a day! There was screaming, crying, laughing, spinning, clapping, running, whining and spitting. And that was the first five minutes!! We had 4 autistic 3-4 year olds and 2 non-autistic kids who are in the class to model good behavior to the others. And TWO aides (you know how I love a class with an aide - two is even better!!). One boy was brand new - this was his first day ever in school. He turned three YESTERDAY. Poor baby, by the time he left school at 3:20pm, he was hoarse. He cried the entire day, well, except for the hour or so he napped. He decided I was the one he liked and he clung to me. That is unfortunate because I'm a sub. So, poor little guy, his only friend won't be there tomorrow.

That makes me sad. Makes me feel bad that I ever even held him. Honestly, it would have been better if he had no friend today than have his only friend never show up again. I was trying to help, but I think I did the wrong thing. I can imagine his little face dropping when he comes to that horrible place where he cries all day and the only person he could tolerate at all and who hugged him tight and whispered to him to calm him down isn't there. (sigh)

It was a good day - I love special ed, and the autism class is quickly becoming one of my favorite classes. But, I realized today that I can do more harm than good even when I have only the best of intentions. I'm going to say a prayer for Brian tomorrow that he will LOVE the regular teacher right off the bat.

Poor Brian.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Things you learn when you blog...

I have learned many things since I started blogging nearly a year ago. First, I have re-learned how much I enjoy the discipline of writing every day. Ok, well, almost every day. OK, ONCE A WEEK OR SO. Sheesh, people! Picky, picky. :)

I have also learned a lot about myself. I think that goes with putting your writing out there for everyone and his/her dog to read...and comment on. I have learned that some people think I'm hilarious (thank you to those!!), some people think I'm a good writer (thank you to those!!), some people are related to me and feel a responsibility to keep up (hey, thanks!) and some people just drop in occasionally to make sure I'm still breathing (and thank you for that too).

It has been fun to recount stories that, when they were happening, were not so hilarious, but in the retelling, can make you bust a gut! I especially enjoyed the most recent relocating story. If you have not read that one, check out the end of May 2008. It's quite a journey, and involved me contemplating murder, or at the bare minimum, assault. If I do say so myself, it's hi-freakin'-larious! At the time? Not so much.

Blogging has a way of making me introspective. For example, it was while blogging about it that I realized that I was actually kind of enjoying substitute teaching. I mean, what other job can give you the experiences I've had and allow me to meet such (ahem) colorful characters? Writing about it made me laugh, even when at the time, I was crying. (7-yr-old bathroom cell phoners crying wolf...)

So, thank you for reading, and thank you for commenting, and thank you for dropping in occasionally to make sure I'm still breathing. I hope you'll continue, and I'll try to keep it funny for the most part!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Yet another of my pet peeves

I have lots of pet peeves, and as I get older, they seem to multiply!! My pet peeves run the gamut of silly (apostrophes, open cabinet doors, toilet paper rolls, grocery carts in parking lots, etc) to serious. I have a lot more silly than serious pet peeves, but today I feel compelled to wax eloquently about a serious one.


Ok, I said it. Now I feel better.

I remember the trip Divine Hubby and I took to his family's house for Christmas in 1993. I was meeting most of them for the first time (and there are a lot of them...), and I was very nervous. I NEVER EVER wondered if I would like them. I was EXTREMELY concerned that they. like. me. I was hoping to join their family, not the other way around. I was determined to make a good impression. I do not remember ever wondering or contemplating if I liked them. As it happens, I absolutely love all of them, but that was not the goal.

There is a member of Divine Hubby's family who is causing great strife and he or she is an in-law. He or she does not like other members of the DH family. He or she is very young, and I am convinced he or she is not aware of the damage being done because of his or her selfish behavior. It is very painful for all of us, and sadly, I see no change coming soon. The DH family has been through more than our share of heartache and sadness in the past few months, and this silly, petty, selfish behavior on the part of this one in-law is only making everything worse. It is such a sad situation, and relationships are becoming strained to the breaking point because of this ONE PERSON. The family member married to this particular in-law is aware of the situation (it is so nasty, it would be impossible not to be) but says he or she is operating on loyalty to his or her spouse as he or she was brought up to do.

On the off-chance the parties I am discussing actually read this blog, I have a message, a plea and a thought.

1. Family is everything. A large part of your family is gone forever, and any offenses or problems can never be fixed with that person. Don't assume the rest of your family will always be there. Will you be able to live with your and your spouse's recent actions if the rest of your family were gone tomorrow? I wouldn't be able to live with it, were it me.

2. Your family is struggling and suffering. I do not diminish your suffering, but all of us wish you would share that with us. We miss you. We love you. We want you to return to the family. Come to Christmas or Thanksgiving celebrations. Call your grandmother. Call your cousins and aunts and uncles. Check in. Get involved, like you used to be. WE MISS YOU!

3. Just a thought. I love Divine Hubby dearly, but if he demanded I have nothing to do with my family, I'd have told him to change his attitude or take a hike years ago. Learn from your family members: sadly, sometimes, spouses come and go. Moms and Dads are forever. You have a great family. DO NOT LET ANYONE TAKE THEM FROM YOU. You are young, and you will regret it bitterly later in life if you continue on this path.

Sorry to get so personal on this blog, but I have such heartache about this situation, and although we have all tried in various ways, it does not seem to have a solution. The only solution, in my opinion, is a 180 degree change in attitude for this one single solitary person. So you don't like a family member or two.

SO WHAT. Being part of a family means embracing them regardless of personality conflicts or dislike. Breaking up a family (which is what you have done) is a terrible terrible TERRIBLE act.

**I understand that there are situations where inlaws or family must be ex-communicated, due to blatant abuse or poisonous relationships. As far as I know, this situation is simply a case of personality conflict. I am not discounting your situation if it is different.**

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Car woes

So, I think I blogged about our BRAND NEW CAR!! Ok, so it's 9 years old and it's a Ford Taurus. But it's only got 55K miles on it and so it's nearly new, plus we paid cash for it, so no car payments...yahoo! We are thrilled with it and are now deciding which of our other cars to get rid of so we're back in the garage again. (Divine hubby is quite the "we manage our stuff so that we can park our cars in the garage" snob...)

The Saab is in the shop, probably forever. It has this quirky little thing about not starting sometimes. And it just won't start until it feels like it. It doesn't happen all of the time, but when it does, we are stranded until the car feels like working again. It's a pain, I'll tell ya. But, because it doesn't happen all of the time, no one has been able to figure out why it does this lovely behavior. So, now that we have the NEW car, we have left the Saab with our favorite Saab mechanic and said, "Please drive it until it won't start for you and then FIX IT!" So, he's had it a week. And although the last day I drove it (last Monday) it did its little thing THREE times in one day, it of course has not misbehaved at all for my beloved mechanic. Behaving like a champ. sigh But, the up-side is, that we have three cars now, so our plan was to leave it with the Saab guy until it happens.

That was the plan.

Until yesterday.

When Divine Hubby couldn't get the BRAND NEW car to start either.


So, now the plan is. DH comes home from work (30 minutes). We drive together to the Saab place (40 minutes). We pick up Saab. Drive home (40 minutes). The next day, DH and Chase and I drive to the Ford place (20 minutes) to drop off the Ford for repairs. Then I take DH to work (30 minutes). Then drive back to take Chase to school (30 minutes). Then possibly to work for me. All while praying the Saab doesn't decide to misbehave during any of that time.

It's exhausting just thinking about it! Thankfully, when one buys a 9-yr-old car (even with only 55K miles on it), one plans ahead and buys the extended warranty. So, we at least don't have to pay for this repair. And hopefully it will only take 1 day, in which time we will completely do all of the above AGAIN to give the Saab back to the mechanic so he can drive it some more.

I sure wish NASA or TSA or somebody would hurry up and develop that cool Star Trek beaming thing. Can you imagine how great that would be? I can't wait.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

I am going to tell you how I am feeling RIGHT THIS MOMENT

**...but first, I'm going to digress. I know, how unusual.**

So, I was wondering how a person gets thousands of people to read her blog and gets asked to write guest blogs and becomes a blog goddess. Then it occurred to me that I might have a better chance of any and all of the above if I wrote more than one entry a week.


Ok, so back to the topic at hand.

So, STQ, how are you feeling RIGHT THIS MINUTE?

I am feeling superb. We have a new (well extremely used, but new to us) car in the garage, we have some friends who have invited us over for dinner on Valentine's Day, I am enjoying subbing (mostly), the weather has been amazing, I ate a chili dog for dinner (I love me some chili dogs...), we went to church and enjoyed a great service, I am anticipating a girls' weekend here in Sin City, we are leading a Financial Peace University class at our church in a couple of weeks, Chase is officially IN at the school where we want him to go, I have a new book club to look forward to every month, we may be FINALLY getting over the cold we've all been passing around for about 6 weeks, divine hubby enjoys his job, the kitchen is clean (hallelujah), and all is right with the world here in Vegas.

I hope things are great in your corner of the world too. I'm praying for my friends with marriage problems, for my sweet sister-in-law mourning her divine hubby's untimely death, for my friends who have illnesses and for those who have lost jobs or homes due to the economy. I love all of you and wish you a great evening and a great day tomorrow!