Monday, December 31, 2007

One of those days

Ok, so DQ in Ohio, so 18 year old Sam is it right now in terms of child care. So I told him before DQ left that I needed to know his work schedule ASAP so that if he had to work when I do, I could arrange for someone to be here with the two younger kids until he gets home. When he told me his schedule, there were no days in there that he had to work late, and so I thought "no problem." Yesterday (Sunday) he told me he was working 10am till 3pm. Except when I got up at noon, he was here. He said he made a mistake, he had to be at work at 3. I didn't think much of it, because when he told me his schedule, there were no nights he was scheduled to close. So when 10:30pm rolled around, and he wasn't here, I was a little concerned. I called him, and he was still at work. Now, normally, he's a bright, good kid, and tries to think of others. But I think he has some kind of a mental block when it comes to me going to work. I mean, my schedule only changes once a year, and the hours never change. I've had to be at work at 11pm on Sunday night every Sunday for the past 3 years, except for vacations. After a lecture about communication and telling me when his schedule was different than what he said it would be, he apologized and said he was on his way home(I don't know, it might be his own work schedule he has issues with, he's been wrong more than once...) I don't know why he wouldn't get that he needs to TELL ME! Because, my job kind of puts a roof over his head, clothes on his back, and food in his belly! So I didn't even leave my house until 11, which is what time I was supposed to be there. I called the supervisor and she was understanding. So I should have been only 15-20 minutes late.

Until I saw the flashing red and blue lights behind me. Yeah. If it was a Phoenix cop, I most likely would have been told to slow down and have a nice day. No. It was a highway patrol cop. "So, where ya going?" "Work. I'm already late." "Where do you work?" Phoenix mumble mumble mumble "what's that?" Man, I just know I was as red as the flashing lights on his squad car. "Phoenix Police Communications." "Oh. Ok, I'll be right back." At least 10 minutes later, he comes back and gives me a written warning. So phew - no fine, no points, and I might be able to get away without TELLING MY SUPERVISOR that I was pulled over! Because, that's policy. Any contact with any police anywhere, we're supposed to tell our supervisor. WRITTEN policy. Because I really don't want to have to tell my supervisor that I was going 70mph down the black canyon freeway, where the speed limit is 55. Because I wouldn't even be able to blame it on Sam being late, because I do it on a regular basis!

Ok, so then I get to work and because I am almost never late, my supervisor is kind, and she lets me use comp time for the now 45 minutes that I'm late, so that means it doesn't count as an unscheduled absence. Good news. So I get settled in and do my job, until lunch time, when I had a decision to make. Do I go in the quiet room and take a nap since I've only had 4 hours of sleep, or do I eat my salad because I am pretty much starving? The salad won out, so I brought it back to my station to eat. I got the salad on the plate, but when I stood up to throw something away, I knocked the chair, which bumped the desk, which knocked my salad onto the floor. Face down. Ok, most of it wasn't so bad. Lettuce, dried cranberries, and walnuts, those are easy to clean up, and I hadn't put the dressing on yet. That feta cheese though, was a little tougher. You know the odor of feta is not really all that pleasant when you smell it for very long. I looked for something to clean it up with, but wouldn't you know, not a dust buster in the whole bureau. I asked the supervisor if there was something I could use to clean it up with, and she said to go find the housekeeper and ask her to do it. I felt bad, she cleans up after us so much already. She's a sweet girl, I don't want to make more work for her. But there went my lunch. My obnoxious coworker (with whom I get along well because he's obnoxious) kept poking fun of me and I could see the humor in how my day was going so far. I was just kind of afraid to move at that point.

I was so happy when it was finally time to go home, because I was really tired. I considered taking surface streets home rather than the freeway, because I was still smarting over being stopped by the highway patrol. But the desire to get home as quickly as possible won out. I figured there wasn't much that would go wrong at home! But when I went to check my email, the interenet wasn't working on my laptop. I debated leaving it alone, but then decided that I should at least check in to why it wasn't working. So I went into the living room, and there was a strange laptop in there, with the ethernet cable from my modem plugged into it. I have no idea who it belongs to, but yeah, I'm a little more ticked at Sam. I don't mind if he lets his friends get on our network with their laptops, however, I want it to be working and available when I, the one WHO PAYS FOR IT! wants to use it. At least put it back the way it was when you're done!

When I was in my room, I thought it felt a little cold and wondered if I'd left a window open, but then when I went to the kitchen, it felt like the air conditioner was on. So I stuck my hand up by the vent, and sure enough, cold air. So my less than 6 month old heating and A/C unit is BLOWING COLD AIR when it's supposed to be heating the house! Ahhh, but at least it's Phoenix and it's only freezing at night!

But, tonight is new years, and I have to work. New years eve at 911 is a pretty hopping place! But hopefully I'll be able to get through it without getting pulled over on my way to work and spilling stinky cheese all over the floor.

May you have a happy and safe New Year, and a blessed 2008!

Friday, December 28, 2007

30 years

The world sure is a different place than it was 30 years ago. Computers were just starting to be made for individual use, but to most people, the idea was still foreign. In my house now, we have 3... If you wanted to talk on the phone, chances are it had to be plugged into the wall. Cell phones weren't widely available then, and the ones that did exist were about the weight of a large newborn. Music was on vinyl, cassette, or 8 track. Cars I guess aren't really all that different, except for air bags, anti-lock breaks, and no more leaded gasoline. They look a little different on the outside, but they still basically function the same way, they just don't fly like people 30 years ago thought they would. And 30 years ago, you could still go to a gas station and have someone pump your gas, wash your windshield, check your oil and air up your tires. Of course, cars today probably cost as much as a house did back then!

In 30 years I've graduated from high school, gotten married a couple times, divorced a couple times, had a bunch of kids, moved 2000 miles, and still haven't figured out what I want to be when I grow up. It took me almost all of the 30 years but I finally have figured out my own self worth. I guess I'm a slow learner :)

30 years ago today I was 10 years old and became motherless. I often wonder how my life would have been different if my mom would have lived, but then I really can't imagine. No matter how the world has changed in 30 years, no matter how I've changed in 30 years, there's one thing that doesn't change - there's not a day that goes by that I don't think of my mom and miss her.

I'm looking forward to seeing her again, but not quite yet. I don't want my kids to wonder what it would be like to grow up with a mom.

In loving memory of Linda Jean Childers Kowalcyk - 1941-1977

Sunday, December 23, 2007

7 weird christmas things

Weird? Me? I don't know what you're talking about... my friend Janean posted 7 weird things about her - the Christmas version, so I thought I'd play along.

1) I loathe the song Christmas Shoes. I turn off the radio and scream at it if that song comes on. I just really detest that song. Why? It's not because my mother died of cancer 3 days after Christmas when I was 10, it's really not. It's because I loathe almost any song that exists only to make you cry. He's my son by Mark Schultz - hate it. Butterfly Kisses, can't stand that one either.

2) I'm usually too disorganized to get Christmas cards together and out the door. I feel bad. To a point anyway.

3) Most years, I don't start shopping until December 22nd. This year, I finished on December 22nd.

4) I always cry during Silent Night at the candle light service on Christmas eve. Because I remember singing that song with my mom in July when we would work on jigsaw puzzles together.

5) I remember one Christmas my 3 sisters and I begged our mom to please let us open all of our gifts on Christmas eve. After much whining, begging, and pleading, she gave in. In fact, she let us stay up all night opening presents and playing with our stuff. I don't think we went to bed until 4 or 5 am. And wow, were we crabby the next day. That Christmas wasn't all that much fun.

6) We don't do Santa at our house. It started before I became a Christian and wanted to focus on the birth of our Savior. It started for two reasons - because when my oldest was little, I was a single parent and worked darn hard for the money to buy her presents. I didn't want the credit to go to some fat white guy who wears fur, abuses reindeer and exploits little people ;) And because I was very very upset when I found out the truth. I felt lied to and betrayed. But then I felt better because I couldn't understand why Santa brought my cousin a lot of presents, and just about anything she asked for, but not me. I hated the "you-better-be-good-Santa's-watching!" junk the adults used to pull. I still do. Yeah, you're right, therapy might not be a bad idea... I'm so glad that's not how God works. I choose to celebrate that baby who was born to die for my sins.

7) How we're celebrating Christmas this year might be considered weird to some. We're going to grill steaks on the side of a mountain again, like we did last year. We'll hike and play games, and have ourselves a cookout. It won't be a white Christmas, but that's just the way I like it.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

School angst

Apparently, my almost 8 year old has it. This morning he was crying that his stomach hurt. I mean real honest to goodness tears. It seemed like he was having sharp pains so I assumed that he was at the beginning of a stomach bug. Reluctantly, I said he could stay home. As soon as I said that, he started skipping around the house. So I made him get dressed and go to school! He was fine at school, fine at the library, fine at the park... but now he's whining that his stomach hurts again. So he said "ugh, I'm not going to be able to go to school tomorrow. I think you should take me to the doctor." I told him if he throws up, he can stay home. His response? "I'll try." Little stinker! But now I wonder what is making him not want to go. He's been having a pretty good year so I'm not sure what this is about. Unless it's that his teacher is out having a baby, that could well be it. Well, after tomorrow, he's got two weeks off. Lucky!

pictures I took today



So what did YOU do today?

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

It's not everyday...

That my boss is able to say...


But last night she did - and I HAVE PROOF!

Saturday, December 01, 2007