Because you should read more… I should write more

It’s time.

I have done quite a bit of soul searching over the last few months, and I have come to the conclusion that it is time that I get back to writing– Something more and more meaningful than 121 characters of a tweet or facebook post. You can’t get better at writing unless you practice.
So, I intend to do just that. Not only will I make a whole hearted effort to keep my blog actually up to date, but I also intend to start a book. Yes, a book. I know, some of you are asking, “if she can’t keep up with a simple blog, how will she ever get to writing an entire book?” Well, the answer is simple. I have no idea.

I just intend to do it. Those of you who have known me for years know that when I get set in my mind to do something, do it I shall. But, there is no hard and fast rule for how long I expect it to take. Nor is there anything that says somewhere down the road I might not change my mind. But for now, I will write.
I have done a bit of soul searching in many arenas the last few months. My job, namely, has given me much to be introspective about. I love what I do and the interesting people I get to meet and work with. The politics, backstabbing and maliciousness, these are not things I enjoy. I have lived much of my life in a sort of optimism; Optimism that life had certain rules and that they would be followed. That injustices would be righted, eventually. Life taught me a very hard lesson about optimism before but clearly I did not learn it well enough. So man’s world has reached out again to remind me that power rules the world, not law or justice. A lesson that has sunk in deeper this time around, despite the stakes being decidedly lower and the injustice more to my pride than my person. I am at a crossroads, where optimism and pessimism meet naiveté and disillusionment. I am standing at the center, and have not yet decided which road is my path.

Second, my son. My child is six and a shining star in an otherwise darkened sky. His homeschooling is going swimmingly. We have been at odds, the volcanoes versus the raging sea; One spewing hot ash and smoke, the other beating the rocks in an attempt to smash them to sand. In the end, the magma is cooled by the sea and the sea is tamed by the rising earth. Together, we have created a landscape neither of us recognize as being completely our own. I have found patience, and a surrendering of will. He has found focus, and a love for bookwork. We spend fewer hours in our household classroom but we accomplish much more than we did before. He gets to pick the topics and the order of the day, and I arrange the lessons and the key points. And we discover together. Bach, Van Gogh, dinosaurs, an (odd) love of flashcards (his—not mine). He is reading now, full books with complicated words. Signs in stores, on streets and on videogames.

My child is unique. Sensitive and bold. And he is learning, not in my way- but in HIS way. Today, he delighted the folks on our Meals on Wheels route telling them that he loved the “haunting” music of Johann Sebastian Bach but his favorite was still “In the Hall of the Mountain King” by Edvard Grieg (a song he learned last year while studying Norway prior to our Disney trip). And, he tickled and somewhat confounded his mama by turning down cupcakes, ice cream and candy from those folks but happily accepting freshly picked snap peas from the garden.

Oh the tricks life will throw your way. Some days, I feel like someone is studying me. Throwing odd tasks my way just to study how I will react. Perhaps as a story for a novel. The real question- am I the villain, or the heroine?

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Not YOUR Momma

I know it is sometimes confusing for the people I work with. I am a Mom. They are barely past the stage of living in their mother’s basement. Sometimes, they aren’t past it at all. Just because I am a Mom doesn’t mean I am your Mom.

That is the part they have trouble with you see.

So when a guy I work with sent me a message on facebook yesterday saying “I might need a ride in to work tomorrow” it infuriated me. We aren’t married. We aren’t friends. We don’t hang out after work. And I’m not your Momma!

Perhaps his mother failed to teach him manners. Your coworkers aren’t your personal limo drivers. Nor are they people whom you can simply summon to your door. If you need a ride into work, you should ask.

I know. Crazy concept.

I suppose this is the consequence of working with a bunch of people who either just graduated college or high school last week. They are very young with zero responsibilities. They live in bachelor pads, with cars in their parents name, insurance they don’t pay themselves with no children or girlfriend to speak of. So, they summon up their equally irresponsible friends when they want them to appear at their service. Unfortunately, this does not work with a 30 year old single mom who has grocery shopping to do, library books to return and a house to clean.

Sorry bucko, but if you need something from me, you’ll have to stand in line. Oh, and try a “please” on for size. Like I tell my five year old, its amazing what those magic words will get ya!

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Suspiciously quiet

When my four year old is quiet, I know something is up. He is either in trouble, or he is about to be. I on the other hand, tend to be suspiciously quiet when I have been ridiculously busy. Well, I wouldn’t say ridiculously maybe, but busy none the less.

The rest of the work week consisted of tyrants who said that, despite freezing temperatures and falling snow, the heat was to remain in the locked and off position. So, I wore my coat inside all day. It was strangely reminiscent of high school.

The week has also included two wonderful trips to our local public library. My son loves to read and I love to read to him. We’ve read 14 books since Wednesday, quite the accomplishment for a child of four. I am struggling to teach him to read. Though he excels in math and science (he can tell you all about an exoskeleton) he has not yet mastered reading. He knows his alphabet and the sounds each letter makes. He can even write most of them and makes them out of legos and play-dough. Reading, however, has eluded us. I feel confident however, that if we just keep reading a few books a day, he’ll catch on in his own time.

I have made a budget for the entire year. Quite a skill, I know. I so far have stuck to it pretty well for the last two months. I am paying off pretty much all my bills (except my truck and student loans) and getting out of debt as much as possible. I also have a two year plan (starting next year) which will pay off my truck a few years early and save me thousands. All without sacrificing family vacations! I plan to tuck a little more money into savings, my 401K and my son’s college savings plan after April (the date on which I pay off all my other debts).

So here is to continuing to make 2013 a healthy year. I’m bringing lunch/dinner to work every day, saving both money and my health. Paying off my debts and becoming more financially healthy. And focusing on my son’s educational and social well being, making my home healthier. Who else has healthy goals they believe they will actually accomplish this year?

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Work Funny

Funniest things I’ve heard at work:

*”Do we have military flights here?” (asked a trainee. BTW, we work on a military base…)

*We have E28 bisexual gear, right? (It’s bidirectional).

*”I put a comma between email addresses, right?” “No, you put a semicolon.” “Ok, so that the two dots thing, right?” “No, that’s a colon. Semicolon has a dot on top, comma on the bottom.”

*”Which military branches have Generals?” “Uh, Army… Marines…” “Who else?” “Well, Navy.” (SMH!! These guys are in the Navy!!)

*”Hey, did A.  just leave there?” “Yes, he did.” “Can I speak to him?” “Noooo, he just left here…”

*”What do these two flight plans have in common?” “Well, one is IFR one is VFR.” “What is the thing they have in common, not what is different.” “Oh, I thought you might be asking to find the differences.” (Now you see what I’m working with)

*”I might go for my Master’s but not my Doctorate. I don’t want to have to write a disorientation.” (Yeah, he’s already confused)

*”When do you hit 60% of your total training hours?” “Well, you get 120 total so that’s half.” “No, what is 60%?” “HALF!”

*”Do you know what TC7’s are?” “Does it have something to do with the arresting gear?” “No, it is steam catapults.” “Oh yeah, it does say TC7 Catapults.” “Winning.”

*”I can’t figure out what the Department of Agriculture would need to be on the base access list.” “Well, you know J. the BASH guy is Department of Ag.” “I thought he was USDA”

*”Do we have mowers on the airfield?” “Yes.” “Where?” “…in the grass…”

*”A male sheep is still called an Elk, right?”

*”Hey, does that copier scan things?”

*”Is London a city or a country?”

*”What is a follow-me truck?” “A truck that you follow, has a big sign on the back that says “FOLLOW ME!”

*While pulling on a door that says “push” the frustrated military girl screams “WHY?!”

*”What I learned today is not to think. I just sit here and reconsider. Because I know if I say it, it is going to be out loud.”

*”I didn’t know Navy Fort Worth was called Fort Campbell.” “I didn’t know the Navy had forts, I thought that was just the Army.” “That’s because it is in Fort Worth, Texas.”

*One of our sailors honestly believes that the two sides of Twix are made in seperate factories and put together during packaging.

*”Is that Texas Zulu time or our Zulu time?” (For those that don’t know, Zulu is universal time)

*”Well, first you said you had 25 minutes left and then you said you had 6 minutes.” “Holy shit, it is almost like I was counting down to zero!”

*”I didn’t even think about going to a ship when I joined the Navy.”

*”The 2nd is on the 3rd this year.”

It’s a good thing these guys are out there, controlling airplanes and keeping the skies safe for us…

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