Saturday, July 31, 2010

Gym Today = Success !!

I almost didn't go. FireGirl has not been doing well in their child care, at all. If we put her in there, we usually get paged after about 10-15 min to come get her because she's in hysterics. So the past few weeks we actually haven't gone to the gym unless we have someone to watch her.

But I really want to get back into the swing of going more frequently. FireMan is working, but I wanted to give it a shot.

I dropped her off in child care, and she was crying, but not screaming, so... I left.
I intentionally kept my workout short. Ten minutes on the stationary bike, followed by one lap around the track, and fifteen reps on the shoulder press machine.
I went to pick up FireGirl... and... she was playing happily! I couldn't believe it!
I'm hopeful that this is a sign of a turn-around in this area.

And... according to their scale I've lost two more pounds! I really couldn't believe it. I actually didn't go to my Weight Watchers weigh-in this week because I have done so horribly this past week. Aunt Flo was in town, and I was a little stressed. Last Monday I consumed more chocolate in one day than I probably usually do in two weeks. Plus my back was really bothering me so we skipped our trainer session and I've taken it easy most of the week.

And I still lost two pounds!

I'm becoming more & more convinced that a lot of my weight gain & difficulty losing weight really has been due, at least in part, to my being on Lexapro. And I'm still on it, just not nearly as high a dose as I was before.

In a way it frustrates me, because I feel like I was helpless to change my weight, and because my weight gain has caused me so much stress, and here it might not even really be my fault.
But in another way it relieves me, because it means that I really didn't eat myself into oblivion. I mean, I definitely can improve my eating & activity, but who can't, right? It kinda lifts a weight off of my shoulders (pardon the pun) and give me comfort that once my PPD is under control, and I get off the meds completely, that my weight actually might come off, at least most of it. Maybe.

I guess what I'm really trying to say is that I had reached a point where I was really frustrated with my weight and I felt like it didn't matter what I did I was just always gonna be fat, so why not eat whatever, but now I feel hopeful that now that I'm weaning off the meds I'm starting to see results and maybe it's not a hopeless situation afterall. Maybe I'll reach my pre-baby weight eventually.

Dear B****:

Move along, you crazy stalker f***ing b**** whore.

Yep, I saw you drive past our house this afternoon. What? Hoping I wasn't here? Hoping FireMan was? Just stalking for the sake of stalking?

Did you think I wouldn't see you? You drove by so slowly anyone near a front window would have a hard time not looking outside to see who was driving by so freakin' slowly.

Haven't you had enough yet? Do you want me to ruin your life? Would your boyfriend like to know that you're still obsessed with your ex-husband? Because I can arrange for him to be informed of your shenanigans if you like. How do you think he would feel if he knew the lengths you went to to try to weasel your way back into you ex's life? I mean, you've taken some drastic steps to try to get FireMan's attention.

You need to understand that your attempts to tempt my husband into your arms p***y, well, I consider them a threat to my family. And you wanna f*** with my family, well... bring it. I will defend my family accordingly.

B***, be gone!

And now, dear readers, you know the primary reason we made such an abrupt decision to sell our home. Drive by's, stopping in front of our house, having packages "accidentally" shipped to her old address... and many, many more even more aggressive attempts by FireMan's ex-wife to get his attention all add up to it being time to move out of the house that they bought together and into one that we bought together. I hate that I'm letting her actions determine the timing of our actions, but at the same time you eventually reach a point where you just have to do what you can to remove your family from a situation.

Friday, July 30, 2010

A little Update

Not much activity going on right now.

FireMan contacted a contractor to come out & look at the situation with the lines coming into the house. They're coming next week.

The sellers accepted our offer. The only counter they had was that they want to close sooner than we had put on our offer. Which is fine by us.

So yesterday we sent in a bunch of info to the loan officer. Standard procedure.

Our realtor is coming by Sunday for us to sign some documents. I'm honestly not sure what.

I've (re)started picking out paint colors, looking at flooring, windows, & such for our new house. After what happened last time I'm cautious, and don't want to get my hopes up, but I also know that if we get it we need to be able to move quickly, so I want to have things picked out & ready to go.

So, not much of an update today, but things are moving along.

Pregnancy & Childbirth

It dawns on me, as I think about my friend, who gave birth two days ago, subsequently hemorraged, and is still in the hospital, still waiting to see if her body will replenish her blood supply or if she will need a transfusion... it dawns on me that pregnancy & childbirth are probably the most dangerous things most of us women will ever do in our lives.

I mean, really. You all know I had my own complications. Scary stuff. A few weeks after I delivered FireGirl, I came to the realization that 100 years ago, maybe even 50 years ago, possibly even 30 years ago... FireMan would have taken me to the hospital expecting to bring home is daughter, and would have left with no one. With the complications I had, he most likely would have lost both his wife & daughter during childbirth.


Similar situation with my friend, except that her daughter is fine. But 50 years ago... her husband would have been left to raise his daughter on his own.


But you know what? Worth it. Every painful, terrifying second. Totally, 100% worth it. I'd do it again a thousand times if the end result was still my FireGirl.

Scary? Terrifying.

Worth it? Absolutely.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Work as Prayer

"...they decided it might actually be holy to get their hands dirty for God. They prayed with their tools and skills..."
page 39

I like this idea. And I believe there is truth in it. The Bible repeatedly instructs us to be servants, both to God & to one another. So what better way to show respects to the Lord than to serve, to work?
Worship, and praise, and prayer are not always done in a neat little church, dressed in suits & dresses, singing lovely hymns. Some worship, and praise, and prayer is done out in the world, getting dirty for God.

I think sometimes we forget that.

WishList Wednesday

Well, my first wished-for item should be no surprise. I wish we had this house.

if you want more details on how the house-buying adventure is going, check out my other blog:

I wish I had my very own, brand new laptop.

I haven't done any research yet. This is just a pic I found online. All I know is I want one that's mine. Not FireMan's. Not my work's. Mine. And one that can Skype.

I wish I had a DSLR camera.

Again, I haven't really done any research or picked one out yet, but I have convinced myself that I could take much better pics if I had a DSLR camera.
And one that I don't have to share either. It's just that FireMan really likes taking pics (so do I!), so when we're together we both want to have a camera, and one of us ends up "losing" and not getting to take pics.

And as always, I wish I had more time.

It just seems like lately there isn't enough time in the day, and I'm always having to pick & choose what I get done. I'd like to get it all done.

Another alternative, would be that I wish I had more energy.
Not trying to make any sort of political statement by using this cartoon, just sometimes I feel like the blue-world guy, being crushed by my obligations in life.
So more energy would be good. Would help with the time issue. Seems like lately if I do have some moments of "free" time (as if time were truly free), I'm so exhausted I still don't get anything done. Even better, sometimes I pass out on the couch. I'm famous for "I'll just watch the news until the next commercial, then get up and .... Zzzzzzzzzzz..................."

So those are my wishes for this Wednesday. What are yours?

Looked at Other Houses Last Night

Just as a backup plan. Because the fact is we have to move next month, so if something falls thru with this house again, we need a plan.

Unfortunately, all driving around looking at other houses did was solidify how much we want this house. We looked at 8 or 9 houses, and the "best" one, I would only consider as a need-a-place-to-live-last-resort, to live in while we flip it, and then re-sell it.

Seriously. In our opinions, that was the best one for our needs.

The good-but-not-holding-my-breath-just-yet news is that we successfully put an offer on the house we want. Went to their realtor last night. I'm hoping we'll hear something today.

Oh, and we got the inspection report on our house. There's only one thing that needs fixing, and that's the electrical wires leading from the street to the house. I have no idea how we go about fixing that. Said where they attach to the house is against code, or something, and the wires are "frayed". FireMan left a message with his brother, who is an electrician, last night. We just have no idea where to start to get that fixed. I mean, my first thought was shouldn't the electric company take care of it? My second thought was how did the house pass inspection six years ago when he bought it?

I guess we'll just have to wait & see what the brother says. Not sure what else to do.

Thanks for checking in.

Dear Workplace I/S Gods:

Please stop clearing out my cookies & defaulting to not allow cookies, since our company's own intranet site, among others I need to visit to do my job, requires them to be enabled.

And since we're on the topic, would you mind please upgrading to IE 8? and upgrading our Flash Player? Because, again, there are actually sites that I need to visit for my job that I can no longer view "optimally" because you won't upgrade.


Tuesday, July 27, 2010

I do not recommend

First Place Bank.

That's the bank we were going thru for our lending, because they were one of the few we could find that did HomePath Renovation mortgages, which was initially the type of mortgage we wanted to get (now that the price has dropped we'll be doing an FHA loan).

So, a couple of months ago when we were first going thru the loan approval process, it seemed like they repeatedly asked us for more, & different, information.

We assumed this was just part of the process, and willingly, even happily complied.

Oh, we can't approve you with this, but if you just send us this from your contractor you'll be fine.

Send it, and denied.

But if you just send this from your bank, you'll be fine.

Send it, and denied.

But if you just send this letter, you'll be fine.

Send it, and denied.

They did it to us again. We should have never gone back to them in the first place (our bad).

Everything checks out for you to be approved for the lower loan amount, now if you'll just send us an agreement, saying you'll hook up to city water, you'll be fine (in most cases, FHA will not approve a house with a cistern).

We sent it, they denied us.

It's like a roller coaster. They get our hopes up, detailing how & why they just need one more thing from us before approval, then bam! denied. Again.

I told FireMan I was done with them.

Our realtor contacted a lender that he works with regularly, they called FireMan late yesterday, and we are verbally approved. Already. Letter should go to our realtor by end-of-business today, and we can submit our offer.

No games. No hoop-jumping.

He knows about my bankruptcy, and the cistern. And we're already approved.

I'm glad, but so ticked that we wasted our time with the other bank.

And I'm still not holding my breath.

Oh, and the inspection on our home was today. Verbally, we were told that everything was fine, although FireMan said he saw the inspector eyeballing something at the front of the house as he was leaving. Guess we won't know for sure until we get the papers.
Appraisal will be next. That's nerve-wracking, because it just depends on what they think. In my opinion, appraisals are much more subjective than they should be.  I've heard of appraisers telling sellers they need to re-paint rooms or replace trim. Even against the buyer's wishes. But because the appraiser thinks it needs to be done, they can make you do it. I think that's silly. So... wish us luck!

Just Learn the Freakin' Lesson Already !!!

Have you ever known someone who seems to repeatedly falling into the same bad situations?

Maybe it's the girl who repeatedly dates the jerks? or the guy who repeatedly finds himself in a crappy job? or the couple that repeatedly seems to have financial difficulty? or the couple that repeatedly seems to be having the same marital problems? or... whatever. Just think for a minute. Try to think of someone in your life that seems to repeatedly be in the same bad situation. Got someone in mind? Okay, good.

Now, take whatever it is you know about that person & their situation(s), and really think about how they got there. Really think about it. Maybe it's you. Take a minute and really think about how you got into your current bad situation. And last time? What happened to get you there?

Now, the part most of us don't like, it comes down to decisions, doesn't it? Repeatedly making the same bad decisions over & over & over. What? You don't like that? Well, think about it. Really think about it.

I'm right, aren't I?

It's actually your fault your in that same bad situation. Again.

That's right. You did this to yourself.
Often, I think that maybe the first time we ended up in such situations, was because God was trying to teach us a lesson. And so after the lesson, He gives us a test, of sorts, giving us the opportunity to choose to learn from the lesson & make better decisions. And if we don't? Well, the next lesson often gets harder.
Rinse. Repeat.
And if you don't start paying attention, start learning your lessons, before you know it you're in one heckuva bad place. And, if I know most people, you'll be saying that you don't know how you got there.

That's why I want you to think. Really think about how you got there.

Learn your lesson. Make better decisions. Move on to easier lessons, and even blessings in that formerly tragic area of your life.

Don't be one of those people who finds themselves in their 50s, still repeatedly finding themself in the same bad situation they've been ending up in since their teens. Learn, people. Learn.

It becomes difficult to feel sympathy for those people, doesn't it? Oh, you're sorry they're struggling. But since now you see how they got themselves there, how their blaming of everyone else is misplaced, it's much more difficult to truly sympathize, to feel badly for them.

And you want nothing more for them to finally learn from their mistakes, learn from their years of bad decisions, learn the lesson & move on to truly greener pastures.

Just learn.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

We put another offer on that house

Saturday our realtor came over & we drew up the papers to put another offer on the house that we want. I finally got in touch with our loan officer, who was out of state Friday, and he said that first thing Monday morning he will send our pre-approval letter. Then I forward it on to our realtor, who will attach it to our offer & send it in to the sellers.

And... assuming no one else beat us to it, we should (hopefully) be good to go.

Don't think I mentioned this, but the seller had dropped the price on that home by $25k in the past month. Plus with the low interest rates that you can get right now, our payment will actually come out to right about what our mortgage is now. Assuming we get it.

Big, big plus.

I'll keep you posted.

Dear Body:

Really? First seven weeks between Aunt Flo's visits, now three weeks? WTHeck is going on with you?!?

Cute Kid Pics

"driving" the fire truck

Friday, July 23, 2010

This is too complicated.

So... FireMan talked to our bank yesterday. If we do the FHA loan, then my bankruptcy doesn't matter, and they will approve us even without selling our current home. The only issue is that FHA will not lend to purchase a house with a cistern, which the house we want to buy has. So we would have to add the contingency that we would hook into county water within "X" number of days.

Then he called our realtor. So the seller will entertain an offer from us only if our pre-approval letter specifically states that we do not need to sell our current home to be approved.

And by then it was 5pm and the bank closed.

So I emailed & called our bank yesterday, requesting a pre-approval letter that states that we don't have to sell our current home to be approved. No response yet.

If we can get it by the end of the day, then our realtor will come over tomorrow morning to draw up our offer.

If that happens, and if we close quickly, then we might actually not have any periods of homelessness.

Too many "if"s. I don't like it. But I don't think we have much choice at this point.

My Thoughts on Immigration

If you want to some to this country, great.
If you don't, that's great too.

If you are able & willing to come this country legally, phenomenal.
If you are able, but not willing, to come to this country legally, get out.
If you are not able to come to this country legally, and choose to come here illegally (or come here legally, then intentionally overstay your visa), then I think you need to accept the fact that you chose to do something you knew was illegal, and therefore need to accept the consequences (deportation) gracefully.

Unlike many others, I am rather unemotional on the subject, either way.

I understand why many people take the risk to come here illegally, and they have my sympathies. But I also think that any time you choose to do something that is against the law, then you are acknowledging that you have decided that the penalty for getting caught (in this case deportation) is outweighed by the benefit (in this case living in the U.S.).
I gained more sympathy for illegal immigrants after I dated a (legal) Portughese immigrant. It's much more difficult to become a U.S. citizen than you'd think. Or at least than I thought anyway.

So I understand why in some cases, people would be willing to risk coming here illegally.

At the same time, I think people need to recognize the fact that they broke the law, and they should be willing to pay the consequence if they are caught.

I don't really see what all the fuss is about, to be honest.

Break law = pay consequence

If you think it's an unjust law, then work to change it. But in the meantime, you need to accept the risk that was taken.

Oh, and those of you all fired up about the Arizona law? Read it. Yesterday I read it in its entirety. And I don't really understand what all the fuss is about. By the language of the bill, it is very clear that the intent was to give state & local authorities power to assist the federal government in enforcing federal law.
Again, if you don't like the law, work to change it. But to throw hissy fits at a state because they're enforcing a federal law? Now, how does that make sense?
Oh, and it ends up that almost every state has its own laws regarding the handling of illegal immigrants. Some strikingly similar to the Arizona bill. And why hasn't the general public heard about those? Can you say M-E-D-I-A hype?

Thursday, July 22, 2010

I feel good! Nanananana!

I really should hit the gym more often. After our training session last night, I feel great!

And guess what? I used the forty pound weights last night! Not every time, but still. Forty! For me, that's a lot!

It's just so exciting to see my body getting stronger.

I'm thinking about trying a group class or two. Kinda scared. Both because I don't want to look like an idiot (ha!) and because they all look like they have a lot of impact involved. Which worries me about my back. But they look like fun. Everyone always looks like they're having so much fun while they're getting their butt kicked!
I guess I could pick one and try it once or twice. It's just scary for me, you know? I mean, the fact is if it's too much impact, one Zumba class could lay me up for a week or so. Scary.
But if it doesn't... then I could be missing out on a great way for me to get even stronger & healthier.
I guess I won't know until I try, but still... scary!

Oh, and I weighed myself at the gym, and my weight had gone down a little bit. Even being the end of the day, and after lunch & dinner. But my "official" weigh-in at Weight Watchers is later today, so I'll wait & see what that is before I get too excited.

Thanks for checking in!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Dear Toilet Squatter (re-post, because apparently some of you did not read the first time):

I respect your freedom to choose to squat over the toilet.

However, I choose not to squat. I choose to sit.

Why? Because I understand that unless I have an open sore on my butt (which I do not), then the chances of me catching any dread disease from a toilet seat is minimal. Which, to me, makes squatting just not worth it.

That being said, just because I'm not afraid of catching something from the toilet seat, does not mean that I don't deserve to be able to sit on a DRY toilet seat.

That's right. Your aim SUCKS.

Learn to aim, or at least have the courtesy to turn around & wipe your pee off the seat before you leave.

For someone who is so dainty, or whatever, that you can't sit on a toilet seat, you sure are disgusting, leaving your own bodily fluids sitting around like that.

Thank you. Have a nice day. And remember the Girl Scout code: leave this place better than you found it. Not pissier.

The Three Year Ugly

I had my therapist appointment the other night.

At the end of the appointment I asked her, out of curiosity if there is anything significant about the four-year mark in a romantic relationship.

Why? you ask?

Well, my first, and only other serious relationship, ended at around the four year mark.
FireMan's first marriage, and only other serious relationship, ended at around the four year mark (for the relationship, not the marriage).
And here we are at the four year mark of our relationship, experiencing issues.

She said the three year mark is actually more significant. Typically (but remember, every relationship is different), at the three year mark you really are one. You've melded together thru your shared experiences, and really are a part of one another. In fact, she said, ending a three year "dating" relationship is often more traumatic than ending a two year marriage. Why? Because she said after year three, if you break up, it feels much more like you are ripping off a part of yourself, whereas before that it is painful, but you have still maintained separate identities, so it tends to be more of a parting of two people. Does that make sense?

Anyway, so she said what happens after that three year mark, because you are one, you start to see the other's uglies. The stuff love blinded you to before. The stuff they hid from you before (intentionally or unintentionally). Just everything. All the uglies start coming out & becoming visible. So then you have to re-identify your relationship. Reassess. Decide whether or not you can live with your partner's uglies. And depending on how ugly they are, decide if & how to deal with them.

I thought that was interesting, and have been contemplating it ever since, both in our marriage, and in my former relationship. Deciding whether or not I think it was true for us.

I really do think it was true in my first relationship. I think we both got too comfortable with each other, and got a little selfish, and consequently got ugly. I think we both were so assured the other would never, ever, ever leave that we stopped "dating", stopped taking that person's needs & desires into consideration. Maybe. I don't know. That was a complicated situation, but I could see that. Maybe.

In this marriage? Maybe. I definitely think we both got lazy, in regards to our relationship. But I'm still working thru exactly what happened to cause our current issues, so until that's done, I don't know that I can say the three-year-uglies were a definite influence. But it's definitely possible.

What about you? Does the three-year-uglies make sense to you? Any experiences to share?

"Feeling Invisible has Brought out Very Strange Feelings of Jealousy"

"Did it happen because me, the real me, the full me, just isn't good enough to be seen anymore? Am I no longer attractive, or fun, or even worth listening to? Feeling invisible has brought out very strange feelings of jealousy. I feel a little desperate to convince myself that I really do exist in the really am a part of all that is going on around me, even when it feels as if I'm not... if Michael can't see me, then I don't want him to be able to "see" anyone else. If I have to suffer from his blindness, I don't want to hear about some woman at work who doesn't."
page 17

Yep. Jealous. For me it's not even women. I wish FireMan heard me like he hears his coworkers. I wish he wanted to do things for me like he wants to do for Water Rescue. I wish he put as much weight on how I feel as he does on how his mom feels.

Some days it feels as if I am the most insignificant, invisible, person in his life.


So... seller is willing to work with us again. Bank is willing to work with us again. Even went ahead & sent over the pre-approval letter.

So far, so good.

Then the seller decides that they won't enter into a contingent agreement with us. Basically meaning that we have to actually close on our house before they will even entertain an offer from us.

Which is fine, I guess. Just creates a logistical pain in the neck for us. As in, even if everything goes well, we won't have anywhere to live for a few weeks.

Here's the timeline: closing date on our current home is scheduled for August 17. We hand over the keys August 31. Which gives us roughly two weeks to put an offer on our new home, get agreement from the seller, complete inspection & appraisal, close, complete renovations, and move in.
Which, if you've ever bought a house before you know, is not gonna happen.

I'm not gonna lie. As much as I love the house, the thought crossed my mind to just give up on getting this particular house. Then I realized. Our house has sold. We're pretty much gonna be in the same boat no matter where we buy. And at least we've already found this house, so we don't have to go thru the home search process.

Yep. So as of August 31st, we're homeless.

Know anyone who would be willing to take in two adults, a toddler, three dogs, and two cats?

Didn't think so.


Tuesday, July 20, 2010

"Invisible is Invisible"

"Am I afraid that my husband doesn't value the inside me more than the outside me? To be honest, I'm not sure he values any of me, inside or out. Invisible is invisible. I have actually thought that if my husband can't see me, maybe I should find one who can... I mean, is this what I signed on for?"page 15

What words of despair! To feel like the one you love, the one you committed your life to, the one that is the other half of you doesn't value you at all! How sad!

And yet... I can relate totally.

In fact, that last line... I've said that almost word for word. "This isn't what I signed up for!" Yep. Those words have come out of my mouth once or twice. And they've rolled around in my head a lot more than that.

There is a modicum of comfort in realizing that you're not alone in feeling this way. As sad as it is, there's some comfort in realizing that maybe it's normal to feel this way.

Here we go again

Contacted our bank yesterday to start the process for approval again. Sent them the signed agreement we have with the buyer of our current home.

Our realtor is supposed to meet with us tonight to go over putting another offer in on the house we want.

I'm nervous. Excited, but nervous.

We have six weeks to go thru the approval process, close on a house, do any needed renovations, and move in. That's right. As of August 31, we have no home.

So... nervous.

I'm also trying not to get too excited about the new house, just in case something falls thru again. That really broke my heart last time. Unfortunately, I was so upset that I threw away all the things I had collected regarding renovating & decorating the new house. So if we get it I have to start all over again. Which I'm slowly starting to do. I don't want to get all into it like I did before, just in case we don't get it, but I also realize that we're on a time crunch, so if we do get it, we need to go! go! go! and won't have time to ponder some of these decisions.

So... wish us luck!

FireGirl Update

On the carousel at Kings Island.
Aunt Carrie swears she loved it (I'm sure she did), just no smiles in this pic.

She is so cute!

Oh, wait. That hasn't changed, has it? LOL.

She's still not talking very much at all. Oh, she babbles tons, but as far as real words coming out... not so much. I'm a little concerned that if she doesn't have a language explosion here soon, the pediatrician will want to send her to speech therapy or something.

Her understanding is phenomenal though. I swear, she understands everything we say. No kidding. Sometimes I think she's honestly a little genius.

She is trying to communicate more. Lost more hand gestures & such. Pointing at things. Grabbing my hand to show me something. Stuff like that. Just not talking a whole bunch.

She knows all of her colors (red, blue, yellow, green, purple, orange, white, black, gray., brown, pink... I think that covers it).
She knows all kinds of animals, and not just the regular ones. She also knows zebra, giraffe, manatee, tiger, sloth, etc.
She's working on her alphabet, and knows about half of the letters. In fact, talking on the phone with her is nearly impossible anymore, because she likes to point at the zero and say "Oooooooohhhhhhhhhhh". Over, and over, and over again.
We're working on counting. She knows what one means, and two. Sometimes three. That's as high as we've gotten. But man she loves two for some reason. Probably because it's the only one she can even kinda say. "Twoooooooooooo". Oh, she also knows five. I don't know that she actually knows five, but she knows it's more than one or two. If we tell her she can have one, or two, of something, she'll grin and hold up all five fingers, asking for more. It's so cute.

Her potty training was going really well, she was making real progress, pooped & peed on the potty several times, until... she saw the poop in the potty. That was the last time. FireGirl no like poop. She even cries when I change her poopy diaper now. So we're working on teaching her that everyone poops, poop is good, etc. The funniest is that when she poops, I go thru the list of everyone else who poops: Daddy, Momma, Grandma, Grandpa, etc. So now if you ask her who poops, she smiles and says "Dada". LOL. Cracks. Me. Up. That child is hilarious. Anywho, I'm also gonna make a poster for her so she can get a sticker every time she goes on the potty. I think she'll like that.

So, that's a brief rundown of what's going on in FireGirl land.

Thanks for checking in!

Monday, July 19, 2010

"I feel like a missing person that no one will miss"

"Many days I think it doesn't matter what I do, so I can do anything I want... Responsibility rests on recognition, which is an agreement of sorts. And we do not seem to agree that I exist as a person... I feel like a missing person that no one will miss."
page 12

I can so relate to this. Even before we had FireGirl, I can remember telling FireMan that I think he thinks the laundry fairy provides him with clean clothing.

So often it seems like nothing I do is even seen, that I am not seen. I can work all day, doing the million little things that keep our house running, and FireMan will come home and not even notice. I can get up from the bed in the middle of the night, or not come to bed at all if he goes to bed before me, and he doesn't even know it. I can dress up, and... nothing. Dress down, and... nothing.

Sometimes it seems like nothing I do matters at all.

backstory: July 16

We countered the potential buyer's offer on our house, and... they accepted!

So, assuming that we pass inspection (don't know of any reason why we wouldn't), and assuming that the appraiser doesn't come back with anything ridiculous, and assuming that our potential buyer's loan goes thru... we sold our house!

I'm excited, but trying not to get too excited. Ended up too disappointed when we lost the other house. That really upset me. A lot.

So even though we don't see any reason why those things wouldn't all come thru just fine, I'm trying not to get ahead of myself.

Oh, and we've decided that once our house has gone thru the inspection & appraisal process, then we'll put another offer on the house we want, with a contingency noting that our purchase of that home is contingent upon the successful sale of this home. And, of course, we'll be going thru a different bank for the loan.

So... things are looking up. Even though I'm a little scared to look too far up.


Dear Workplace I/S Gods:

It would be very helpful if you would stop blocking me from websites that I actually need to perform my job duties.

Thank you.

Thoughts on Child Support

This has been eating at me for a while, so it's time to step on my soapbox and let 'er rip.

If you are in a position where you are asked or required to pay child support, you should be thankful that you are in a position to provide monetary support to your children, and stop your whining.

It seems like every time I turn around I hear a woman complaning about how the kids' dad is fighting child support. Or I hear a man complaining that the mother of his children is trying to get more money out of him.

*note* it's not always the man paying the mom. On occasion it's the other way around. But in our society, the majority is the mom with primary custody, and the dad paying child support to the mom. So that's how I'm wording it here.

I'm sick of it.

If you think the parent receiving the money on behalf of your children is abusing the system, then you need to report it to your caseworker & let the system (hopefully) do it's job.

In this regard, your job is to provide financial support for your kids. Period. Do your job, and stop worrying about what she's doing.

How could you possibly be ticked off that the person with custody of your children expects you to help support them financially?

So she moved into a new apartment / house? So what! That's a better living condition for your children.

So she bought a new car? So what! That's better, safer, more reliable transportation for your children.

I've also heard men complaining that the ex-wife is asking for more money, and if she gets it he will be left with so little income it will push him below the poverty line. I checked. He's right, it's true.

My response: why are you angry with her? be angry with the state that allows such standards, that sets the pay requirements.

I also know a man in a situation that he is working three jobs and just barely making it, because he owes so much child support to several different children, all by different mommas.

My response: put a sock in on it! Seriously. Ever heard of a condom?

Long story short, if you made the decision to have sex, you accepted that you might have kids, maybe even planned for it. If you have a child, you accepted that you would be responsible for that child, including monetary support. If you weren't willing to do that, then you should have never had sex.

Sounds drastic, right? Well, we're talking about a child here. It is serious, and should be taken seriously.

Just pay your dang support, 'kay? And stop freakin' whining about it.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

The Invisible Woman: when only God sees

I picked this book up the other day. The title seemed to echo what I often feel, plus it was on sale for only five dollars.

I have to say, the book echoed my sentiments as well.

It's a quick read. I completed it in one night, between giving FireGirl a bath, and other chores.

I would consider this a must-read for mothers, a should-read for women, and a not-gonna-hurt-read for everyone else.

Dear Lexapro:

Don't fail me now!

backstory: July 16

We had a showing last night. Our first showing it what seems like forever. After a speed-cleaning of the house, we left.

And... we got an offer!

This morning our realtor called FireMan & told him the offer. He's coming over tomorrow morning to go over the details and for us to decide if we're gonna accept or counter.

I'm so excited.

And... the house we want so badly? That we got rejected for before but if we sell we should be able to get no problem because we won't be paying two mortgages?

It's price has been dropped! They've dropped the asking price by 10%!

So... you know where I'm going with this, right?

If we get a contract on our house, we might will probably put another offer on that house.

I'm trying not to get my hopes up, but maybe, just maybe, our earlier plans fell thru for a reason, and now we'll still get the house, but at a better price. Maybe.

Keep praying for us!

Dear Husband:

I'm just trying to talk to you. Why is that so hard?

New Blog: House Update

Remember when I said I loved blogging, and was starting additional blogs? Well, I did.

One of those is about our journey to find our home.

I've been posting for a while, but they've all been backstory posts that were already posted on here. Which explains why I haven't told you about it yet.

But I have a new post, that you don't know about yet!

So, without further ado...

Finding Our FireHouse

backstory: July 6

Our realtor came over last night.

I guess it's not over yet.

We're gonna lower the price on our house by about 1 1/2 %, hoping to drive in some more traffic. We also have an open house scheduled for later this month.

And it appears that the bank that owns the house we want (did I ever mention it's a foreclosure?), really wants to unload it. When they found out we didn't get the loan, they contacted our realtor to see if they could work something out. The bank offered to fix some of the repairs at their own cost, thus lowering the total cost of our loan, increasing our chances of getting approved.

And... our realtor (who is also a licensed mortgage broker, although he's not practicing right now), doesn't think we got declined due to my bankruptcy at all. He thinks it's because the property we want to buy has a cistern. Apparently banks see that as some sort of liability (I did read about this on the internet), and they'll do anything not to approve you. He said that even though I have a bankruptcy, not only was it due to extenuating circumstances, but I've had perfect credit since then, and my overall score is actually very good when you factor in the bankruptcy (I'm in the upper 600s). So he wants us to try again, and go thru a different loan company.

FireMan & I haven't really had a chance to really talk about it yet, but it's nice to know we have options.

I'll keep ya posted!

Friday, July 16, 2010

backstory: June 29

The bank rejected us. And I'm majorly bummed.

Also a little ticked at the underwriter. The reasons he gave, they could have told us five weeks ago, instead of dragging it out. They kept telling us if-this, and if-that, and making us jump thru hoops, just to tell us "no" based on information they had from the beginning.

So our contract on our the house will expire tomorrow. Our realtor feels bad for the situation, so he's gonna try to get our earnest money ($500) refunded to us. He's also coming over Friday to discuss our next steps.

FireMan is ready to give up, focus on paying off bills & building up savings, make some additional small improvements on the house, and wait until mid-2011, when my bankruptcy will be far enough past that it shouldn't matter any more for home loans.

I am done, done, DONE with the house we're living in. Done. Did I mention I'm D-O-N-E?

We do need to figure out what to do though. Our house is still on the market, but what the heck are we supposed to do with three adults, three dogs, and two cats if we don't have a new house lined up to move into? And what should I do with all the stuff I've boxed up? I really don't want to unpack it only to find another house, get it, and have to re-pack everything. But I also don't want things to stay packed in boxes if we're gonna be in this house for months more.

And before anyone says it, yes, I know FireMan's idea is more practical. So is his idea of living in this house forever and having it paid off in 14 years.

But I am done. This house has been a thorn in my side since I met FireMan, before I ever moved in. One thing after another, and I am done. Besides the personal emotional stuff, it's not practical in the long term. The house is situated on a hill, and there is no way to get into the house without either going up a flight of stairs or navigating down a short but steep hill. To give you an idea, after I had FireGirl, and was suffering from so many complications, FireMan had to park in the front yard so I could get from the house to the car, because I couldn't navigate the stairs or the hill. Plus I already have a bad back. So what's gonna happen when we're old & gray and have a hard time getting around at all? It just not practical. Besides which, I'd really like to have a more accessible, flatter yard that FireGirl can play in without us having to carry her up & down hills, or always be worried that if she makes it to the top of the hill (she already has once), that she'll slip and roll all the way to the bottom. It's just not family-friendly.

So I am done. I just don't know what to do from here.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

backstory: June 23

Remember my post about how they were gonna double our down payment because I had a bankruptcy in my past? Well, late yesterday we got word that they might not approve us at all because of it.


According to the loan officer they can make exceptions if the filing were the result of truly extenuating circumstances, which I feel mine was. So I submitted a letter detailing my accident, injury, surgery, blah, blah, blah and how this affected my financial status at the time.

I mean, my credit since then has been fine. Haven't even been late with one payment. My credit score has gone up a little bit each year. I've done all the right things, financially speaking. I think, anyway.

We haven't heard anything since I submitted the letter.

It just really kinda ticks me off. In a way I feel like I'm being punished because of something someone else did.

I mean, the lady that hit me? She ran a red light, and got a ticket, and had some minor damage to her car. I get hit, and have a totalled car, a lifetime injury, years of pain, and a subsequent bankruptcy on my record. How is that fair?

Oh, and to add insult to injury, I needed to move a cinder block this morning. One cinder block. Yep, you guessed it. About 30 minutes later my back went out. I've been in some level of pain pretty much all day. Luckily for me, it's been just a little pain most of the time, punctuated by episodes of pain so bad you almost fall over when it hits you. All because I moved one cinder block. Stupid back.

And no, FireMan wasn't home. And yes, it needed to be moved before he'll get home. So unless FireGirl got some miraculous super-strenght, I didn't have much of a choice.

So I know it's only been a day, but I really want a definitive answer. Yay or Nay. Yes or no. New house or old house. I hate this hanging in limbo thing. And the paperwork the loan officer had sent previously had a tentative closing date Jun 28, so it's not like we have a ton of time. We just really need to know what's gonna happen.

Dear HelpDesk:

We're going on Day 4 of my laptop freezing up. You have, by your own admission, done "just about everything" you can do.

Yet you still won't replace my computer. You won't even provide me with a loaner until you can "fix" the problem. Or decide that it's really not gonna fix & so I can get a new one. Whatever.

This is ridiculous. I have lost at least a good three full days worth of work. I have been trying to squeeze in what little work I can during the brief stretches that my laptop actually works, but since about 95% of my job is done on the computer, I am literally unable to work efficiently until you get the problem fixed.

Or just give me a new laptop.


Haven't posted in a while

And it's driving me crazy!

My laptop has been giving me problems since last Thursday. Still is. Keeps freezing up. So far the longest stretch of usable time I've gotten is right about 90 minutes.

I really want to write more right now, but I just don't have time at  the moment. Hopefully I can catch you all up later.

PS - don't let me forget I want to give you a FireGirl update. She's doing some adorable things right now!

Monday, July 12, 2010

backstory: June 22

Over the weekend, I was asking God about our house situation. According to our contract we're supposed to close by June 30th, and it was getting closer & closer, with no definitive word from our bank yet.

The answer I got was "Just do it. It'll be fine."

Okay. Fine. Done.

And then... Monday comes. The bank calls with three different loan options. All of them are no good for us. I'm starting to wonder how it's gonna be fine.

And then today comes. FireMan calls the bank back. Oh, they forgot to tell us about this one option. Which is, of course, just perfect for us. We should have our closing date set by the end of today.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Dear Neighbors-Up-the-Street:

Why do you have pets? Your dog runs the street, no collar. Found out yesterday the people that live next to us have been feeding her. And is it any wonder that when I raised my hand to scratch my head, she winced as though I were going to beat her? Big surprise. Your cats are all over the streets too. You have two other dogs that you keep in a tiny dog pen in your back yard. I've never seen them out, never seen you take them for a walk. I shudder to think how disgusting that pen must be. I wish I could see it better, so I would know when to call Animal Control.

I guess I shouldn't be surprised. After all, why would you treat your pets any better than you treat your kids? Letting them run the streets as well, you apparently have no concern for their safety & well-being either.

Word is your house has sold at auction, and you and your four children are moving into a small apartment a few streets over.  I hardly imagine you will take your many pets with you. What apartment complex would allow that many anyway? I imagine, as do several other neighbors, that you will either dump them all in the street, or will leave them to starve in the house / pen. But at least we have warning, so will keep an eye out.

FireMan knows  your dad. He says he's been buying groceries for you. Because, despite the fact that you have money for four-wheelers, go-carts, multiple laptops, a giant flat screen television, etc. you somehow continually have bare cabinets, and he can't stand the idea of his grandchilren going hungry.

You. Are. Losers.

I pity your children. I pity your pets. I pity anyone who loves you, and thus has to deal with your... immaturity? lack of responsibility? loserishness?

Pack your crap up & get out. Good riddance.

backstory: June 18

Wednesday we had a showing. Last minute. I really didn't want to make FireGirl leave the house, since she was still not feeling well, but she didn't have a fever anymore, and the big picture is that these are potential buyers who might buy our house, so... we left. Now for the adventure. We come home an hour later, and as I'm trying to put the dogs back in the yard (we lock them in their room in the basement for showings), FireGirl opens the basement door when my back is turned, and... we have three loose dogs. As I'm trying to get FireGirl in the car & round up the leashes, my phone won't stop ringing. It's FireMan. We have another showing. In 15 minutes. I now have a sick baby, three loose dogs, and can't even go home?!? The realtor is pulling in the driveway as I am leaving. It's the same people that were just there! I drive around, and eventually corral all three dogs into the car. Did I ever mention that these are not small dogs. Well, LittleDog is. But the big dogs? We're talking 85 & 90 lbs, respectively. Three dogs & a toddler in the car. And I'm not supposed to go home. I did anyway, planning to drop them off in the back yard & leave. Well, the potential buyers saw me & flagged me down as I was getting back in the car. Asked me quite a few questions, then they left. Okay, good. Get FireGirl inside, give her a bath. As I'm drying her off, my phone rings again. It's FireMan. Another showing. In 20 minutes. I look down. FireGirl is nodding off. It's been a long day for her (and for me). But I have to focus on the big picture of selling the house. So we leave. Ends up, it's the same people! This time with their handyman.

So... ends up they did a sort of mini-inspection that day. Our realtor said their realtor is either a rookie, or just really inconsiderate, and that she should have instructed them that they need to make an offer first, then have a real inspection done. So supposedly they are planning to make an offer, but following their "mini-inspection" have already decided on some upgrades they want to do, so are going back to their bank to get pre-approved for more $$ for the upgrades. We're supposed to have our offer no later than close of business on Monday.

All I have to say is that after all that, they'd better make a decent offer! FireGirl & I were exhausted after all that, and I could tell the dogs were really stressed by having strangers coming in & out of the house so many times.

Friday, July 9, 2010


Yesterday I weighed in at Weight Watchers. I'm down a total of 3.6 lbs in four weeks! Yay!

Now, I'm not gonna lie. I have not been nearly as good about tracking my points as I really should be. Not nearly. In fact, when I weigh in and the number goes down, I'm a little surprised. I felt like I was doing "better" when I was trying to follow my trainer's eating plan.

But then it dawned on me yesterday. I've been weaning off of the Lexapro. Finally. So far, so good. I've only taken two pills in two weeks. And then I realized. I started weaning off of it right about the same time I started WW.

So, has my weight loss been because of WW? or because I'm weaning off of a med that has been known to cause unexplained weight gain & difficulty losing weight?

Well... I think it's a combination of both. My theory is that now that I'm weaning off of the meds, my body is able to react to my efforts the way that it should, and so is finally, slowly, beginning to drop the weight.

Slowly can be frustrating, but I remind myself that the last time I lost a significant amount of weight I averaged only 1/2 a pound a week. But I kept the majority of the weight off until I got pregnant. I'd rather take longer to lose it, and keep it off, than lose it all in a couple of months then put it right back on.

On a semi-related note, I'm starting to see results with my workouts as well. My trainer still kicks my butt, but... I'm able to use bigger weights than before. When I first started, I never used more than 15 lb weights. Last night the lightest one I used was 20 lbs.

Improvements. Results.

Feels good.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

backstory: June 10

Our house is officially on the market. Already have one showing scheduled.

Sent back the loan papers to the bank today, so hopefully we'll get loan approval finalized ASAP.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

backstory: June 3

Well, the appraisal on our new house went well. Meeting with our agent tonight to go over some things. Don't really know what it all means yet. Guess that's what realtors are for, huh?

Getting our house market-ready is going much more slowly than we thought. Of course, it didn't help that right in the middle of pressure-washing over the weekend, we had a water main break. And just life getting in the way. And some things taking a lot longer than we thought.

Front landscaping = done
New fence = done (although now FireMan thinks he wants to paint it)
Deck refinishing = not done, half power-washed
Basement = not done, half painted
Packing & cleaning the inside = not done, good amount of packing done, pretty much no cleaning done yet
Setting up spare room as an actual bedroom = not started, still need to find a twin bed we can borrow.

Oh, and our design idea for the new house involved knocking out the wall between the kitchen & the living room. That was a big part of our plans, because the kitchen is in kinda a weird place, and a strange layout, so we planned on knocking out the wall to open everything up. Uh, yeah. Ends up that's a load-bearing wall. Crap. So now trying to figure some things out. Seriously, the kitchen sucks with the current layout. Plus it's tiny. And closed off from everything. But if we can't knock out that wall, then I'm not sure what our options are to make it better. Ugh. Time to get creative, I guess.

Thanks for checking in!

Buddy has been injured

photo taken by TM Photography

This is Buddy. My wonderful, strong, protective defender of our home & property. And us.

And he's been injured.

"Protecting" us from either a raccoon. Or a groundhog. Or an opossum.

Why those three? Because Jason found what was left of the raccoon & the groundhog. And I got to witness the opossum, injured as it was, still playing 'possum (he eventually made it to safety).

Buddy suffered a bite to one of his paws, that has subsequently become infected. Such a little bite on such a big dog. And it's bad. Buddy took him to the vet yesterday. The infection is in his joint (like our ankle). He got two injections at the vet's office, and is on antibiotics & pain meds for the next 10 days. And is to be kept indoors as much as possible to limit his activity so he doesn't injure himself.

He hates being indoors. Hurt as he is. Oh, he enjoys being around us, and it's definitely better for tending to his injury, but he is clearly happiest as an outdoor dog. Typical of his breed (Anatolian Shepherd), they were never intended to be confined to a house.

Vet says he should be all better in 10 days. If not bring him back for X-rays to make sure there's not a tooth lodged in the wound.

I look forward to seeing him all better again, running the fenceline, then sitting on top of the hill watching over his domain.

Oh my Buddy.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

backstory: May 21

So, the bank called FireMan late yesterday.

They nearly doubled the down payment they would require from us. Money we don't have on hand.

Why, you ask? Because I have a bankruptcy in my past.

It was all I could do to keep from crying at work when he told me.

So, I was in a bad car accident in 2002 and sustained serious injuries, primarily to my back. Had subsequent surgery in 2006. Well, long story short, after a three year legal battle with the car insurance company, I didn't even get enough money to pay my medical bills, let alone replace my totalled car, or pay me for lost wages. I was left with thousands of dollars of debt, mostly to different doctors.
By the way, I definitely do not recommend Nationwide Insurance. I guarantee they spent more in legal fees over the course of three years than we were even asking for in the settlement. I just wanted to get my bills paid.
So, in 2006, after the surgery bills were added on top of the other bills I'd been struggling to pay for the previous four years, I couldn't make it anymore. I spent about six months living off of Totinos Pizzas (they were only $1 at Remkes) and water. Sometimes KoolAid or some mac-n-cheese for a treat. A special treat would be the 79-cent cheeseburger from the McDonald's down the street. No cable. No shopping. No frills. At. All. I remember when I finally met with a bankruptcy attorney, and she sent me to a financial counselor (as required by the bankruptcy laws). He said he didn't know how I'd made it like that for so long. But I was determined to pay off my debts. I tried. I really, really tried. But the bills got to be too much. I couldn't make it any longer.
So... I'm in a car accident in 2002. A woman accelerates thru a red light, t-boning my car, totalling both my vehicle & my back in the process, giving me what doctors consider a "lifetime injury", and if that's not enough, we might now lose our dream house because of the financial repercussions. For something that was never my fault to begin with.

Live. Isn't. Fair.
At the time of my bankruptcy filing, over 75% of my debt was related to medical expenses. When you factor in my college education, over 97% of my debt was related to either medical or education.

I'm not saying I never made a frivolous purchase in my life, but I can honestly say that the vast majority of my debt was related to either medical or education expenses.

And yet these bankruptcies are treated the exact same way as people who just run up their credit cards and live it up on consumer debt.

Not. Fair.

They really need to come up with two separate categories for bankruptcies. One category for responsible people who just hit some hard times. And one for irresponsible people who just lived beyond their means and can't (or don't) manage their money well.

It's just so frustrating. I'm angry. I'm frustrated. I'm sad. I'm disappointed. And I feel a little guilty that because of my history, FireMan is upset about us possibly not getting the house. It sucks.

It's not over yet. Our realtor is working with us to see what options we have. Apparently we might qualify for a rural home development program, which would cover our entire downpayment (why didn't he tell us about this before?!?), and there are some other loan options we might qualify for. But for right now our lending is stalled until we figure something out.
On a sort-of positive note, the inspection was this morning, and the house passed. The inspector didn't find anything that we didn't already know about. Yay! So that's good.

Now we just have to see if this lending thing will work out.
Thanks for checking in.

I love blogging

I really do. I have four (that's right four!) blogs right now. And am thinking about starting two more. I enjoy it that much.

Don't have that many followers. Not sure how many people visit / read regularly but aren't followers.

I like when people follow me. I enjoy reading the comments. But mostly I just enjoy writing. Writing about whatever I want. Writing about my life. I find it very therapeutic. Calming.

I love blogging.

I've decided to monetize at least one of my blogs. Sometime. I'm pretty sure I'll never make a living at it. There aren't that many people interested in what I have to say, LOL. But I figure WTHeck not try to make a little back, right?

I don't plan to change what I blog about or how I do it. That's not what it's about. For me anyway.

Consider this more of an experiment than anything.

I'll keep you posted. Just for fun.

I anticipate my first update to be something like "I made 32-cents last month!" LOLOLOLOLOL!

Sunday, July 4, 2010

backstory: May 11

We went to Home Depot Tuesday night and looked at our options for flooring, windows, doors, etc. for the new house. That's something that I really enjoy doing. Anyway, my point is that... the flooring, windows, and the french doors are all about half of what we were budgeting! Woo hoo! We're not going to adjust our budget, that way we're prepared for the unexpected, but it's nice to know that we should end up with some more flexibility in our renovation budget.

In case you're wondering - we had to submit a budget to the bank, since we're getting a renovation loan. Our original budget was based on the numbers given to us by one of FireMan's coworkers, whose second job is as a contractor. Even though we went with his low estimates, we're still coming out way ahead. Woo hoo!

Dearest Neighbors:

I love Independence Day. Love it. One of my favorite holidays. Really, it is. Love the picnics, love the parties, love all the activities, love the music, love the fireworks. Really do.

And so, you would think I would usually be much more tolerant of you shooting off large amounts of fireworks for hours on end.

Even though it makes FireDog #1 go nuts and try to eat thru the door. Even though it took several hours to get FireGirl to bed because of the ongoing booms.

But I'm not that tolerant this year. Not at all. You know why? Because you have been letting off fireworks intermittently since May. For two months now I have had to deal with a freaked out giant dog and a can't sleep little girl at least once every couple of weeks because you were shooting off fireworks. And it's getting really old. So the four hours that you have been shooting off fireworks tonight (four hours, really?!?), is really annoying me. Not the least reason of which is because I  highly doubt you really even care about why people shoot off fireworks on July 4th, as much as you care about getting another chance to keep your neighbors up.

If I knew exactly which neighbor you were, I'd say something. Politely, of course. But as I have a toddler sleeping in the next room, I can't exactly go trolling the neighborhood, can I?

So I'm letting you know. Since it's the holiday, I'll tolerate the fireworks tonight & tomorrow night. And on any other holiday, and maybe even holiday weekend, that comes up. But the next time you decide to shoot them off on some random day, I'm afraid I'm gonna have to request a patrol car to come thru & ask you to stop.

I'm glad you enjoy your fireworks. And I'm glad you're so happy about, whatever, that you want to shoot them off. But you live in a subdivision, and you really need to be more considerate of how you might be disturbing your neighbors.

Thank you for your kind attention to this matter.

Thoughts on Independnece Day

"The second day of July, 1776, will be the most memorable epoch in the history of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival. It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward forever more."  -- John Adams

Well, Mr. Adams might have been off by two days (citing July 2nd, the day Congress voted for independence from Great Britain), but our Independence Day remains once commemorated throughout the land. I do wish more people saw it not so much as just a day to party, but truly commemorated it as a day of deliverance, truly remembered it for what it was is.

"You have to love a nation that celebrates its independence every July 4, not with a parade of guns, tanks, and soldiers who file by the White House in a show of strength and muscle, but with family picnics where kids throw Frisbees, the potato salad gets iffy, and the flies die from happiness. You may think you have overeaten, but it is patriotism."  -- Erma Bombeck

Freedom's natal day is here.
Fire the guns and shout for freedom,
See the flag above unfurled!
Hail the stars and stripes forever,
Dearest flag in all the world.
-- Florence A. Jones
"It is easy to take liberty for granted, when you have never had it taken from you."  --Author unknown
"What is the essence of America? Finding and maintaining that perfect, delicate balance between freedom "to" and freedom "from."  --Marilyn vos Savant

Friday, July 2, 2010

backstory: May 7

Realtor came by last night. Basically, our houses aren't worth near what we thought they were. Too many foreclosures in our neighborhood. Great.

I've decided this is what stinks about real estate. So, right now, because the market is down in our area, we can get some really good deals on what we want. But that also means that we won't get crap for our house.

The realtor said our best bet is to buy, and to rent out both of our houses until the market picks up. If the bank tells us we need to sell one in order to buy, then we need to sell what is currently our rental property, as it has more equity in it.

So the next step is to meet with a lender and see what they say.

Dear Body:

WTHeck?!? I do better on my WW points this week, actually work out, and this week I gain? Seriously!

You'd better shape up & drop again next week, or we are gonna have to have a come-to-Jesus meeting, 'kay?

Thank you for your kind attention to this matter.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Dear Personal Trainer:

Thank you for kicking my butt. Somebody needs to.

See ya next week.

Stupid Cat

Good job, Tess. Got me all attached to you, and then gave me a health scare.

Tess has had blood in her stool since yesterday. I called the vet this morning, and they said "She needs to be seen today. Can you be here at 2 o'clock?" That's never good.

All I could do to keep from crying all morning. She's so young. I just couldn't help but think of the worst case scenario. I even called Jason to ask what my max budget was for her treatment.

So we get to the vet and... they can't find anything wrong with her. But it can be pretty serious, so they put her on three different meds as a precaution. And the vet said he would personally call me in two days to see who she's doing. So I'm glad they didn't find anything wrong. And I'm glad that they're playing the better-safe-than-sorry route. But I'm also still a little worried. And even though they didn't find anything wrong, I'm so glad I took her in. Obviously it's serious enough to be taken, well, seriously.

Why do we get attached to these animals? Ugh. Stress. Worry.

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