Life as a single Mother-Empty nest, Dating, Ex-husband, Best Friends, Full-time Employment, Unemployment, night school...How do these all relate to one another? Come with me:

Friday, December 31, 2010

Moving into the next Decade

The past ten years for me have had some major speed bumps along the way. Unemployment, relationships, and money issues.
Most of my major appliances have gone on the fritz, my yard has flooded, and my car has been nearly re-built.

What has happened- is LIFE.

But on the other side of that, are all the good times the past decade has brought with it.
Ten years ago, my kids were eleven, nine and eight. I had been divorced for three years and was dating a man who I was sure I would marry.
What a difference a decade can make.
I hate the word resolution, I do however, love goals. The two-thousand and teen decade will bring a lot of changes in my life I am sure of it.

My son, has just six months left on his contract in the armed forces. He is still unsure whether he will sign on for a new contract. While serving, he has completed some courses in CSI and is continuing with it now. There are so many directions his life can take in the next ten years. In ten years, he will be thirty-one!

My oldest daughter received a promise ring for Christmas. It is a promise of his commitment to her but they are taking things slowly and not speaking of marriage just yet. She is soon signing up for a phlebotomy course which will help us get some funding to get her into her college courses, and guide her into the medical profession of her choosing. In ten years, she will be twenty-nine.

My youngest is graduating from high school this May and already applied for college. What will happen in her life over the next ten years? In ten years, she will be twenty-eight.

In my own life, I may find love, I may get into a job I really love and feel as though I can make a difference in. I may attend my children's weddings, see the birth of my grandchildren, and my hope is that I attend very few funerals.

I have good feelings about the new year. And even better feelings about the next decade. One of my favorite quotes 'My cup runneth over' (Hebrew bible psalms 23:5) describes my life completely.

The love of my parents, my children, my extended family and close friends. The comfort of home and a warm place to lay my head at night. Enough food to nourish my children and cause the scales to tip a little too far from my own gain.

I had a fabulous two week long holiday celebration with all three of my kids and one friend of my sons (who is becoming like my own child). Spending quality time laughing, joking and enjoying each others company. And I am truly excited about the coming year. I see big changes for the better.

Wishing you and yours a very Happy New Year! 

Should old acquaintance be forgot,
and never brought to mind ?
Should old acquaintance be forgot,
and old lang syne ?
For auld lang syne, my dear, for auld lang syne, we'll take a cup of kindness yet, for auld lang syne.
And surely you’ll buy your pint cup !
and surely I’ll buy mine !
And we'll take a cup o’ kindness yet,
for auld lang syne.
We two have run about the slopes,
and picked the daisies fine ;
But we’ve wandered many a weary foot,
since auld lang syne.
We two have paddled in the stream,
from morning sun till dine ;
But seas between us broad have roared
since auld lang syne.
And there’s a hand my trusty friend !
And give us a hand o’ thine !
And we’ll take a right good-will draught,
for auld lang syne.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Happy Holidays!!!

No matter what you are celebrating this week, I want to wish you a very happy holiday!

We are very busy here hardly a moment to stop and breathe.

My son is home with a fellow soldier friend, who is becoming like another son to me. This will be the first Christmas season spent without my parents, none of us made the trip, but it will be fabulous none the less.

Old friends of mine and my children's, stopping by, friends of the kids who have become as close to me as my own kids, and Christmas eve with my best friend and her family in the mountains. I am rather excited to make the best of this season.

We have already done a lot of baking for the neighbors and parties,

Gotten creative with graham cracker gingerbread houses,

Shoveled knee deep snow,

and opened my doors to a near homeless and pregnant old friend more than down on her luck.

Can you feel the spirit of the season?

Wishing you and yours a fabulous Holiday, and to those of you who will not be celebrating a holiday, have a wonderful weekend!
And thank you for reading.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Vegas babay

A trip to anywhere at Christmas time is usually not in the cards for anyone among the unemployed. Not true for me. My best friend started a new job her first job in over 15 years, this past summer and invited me to stand in as her 'other person' for the big Christmas bash.

This was not your ordinary office Christmas party. The company has agents all over the United States and my friend works at the corporate office here in Utah. It was a great opportunity for her and her co-workers to put a face to voices they spoke with on the phone many times a week. For me- it was a free trip to Vegas!

We had a great time. We drove down rather than fly, it gave us an opportunity to stop by my parents house on the way. Although it is ten degree's warmer where they live, they were both sick with the flu.

We got to Vegas Friday afternoon, just enough time to get cleaned up. The company scheduled a cocktail party -meet and greet for that night. It was a casual affair. I thought it might be a great chance to meet some handsome young bachelors while she was introduced to coworkers. That was not to be. Most were couples. The only other singles were young nineteen year old girls from her office.

The party was open bar. The company went all out to make it memorable for the employees. And it was. After about two hours we were led upstairs to an improv comedy show. We were not the only patrons at the show but the entire half circle front section of the theater was reserved for the employees and guests.

The comedy was rank and a bit uncomfortable for my friend as she works everyday with these people but funny nonetheless. The evening after the comedy was ours, but after a few drinks and the six hour drive, we were ready to call it a night.

We stayed at the MGM grand and after two nights there, I am convinced it is time to save up for a new mattress here at home. Those beds were like sleeping on a cloud.

Saturday was awesome. We had the morning to ourselves and played a little at the casinos. My friend regretted that we rode a roller coaster as it caused her residual whiplash to flare up. We didn't win big at the tables and we didn't lose either. That night we got to dress up. There was to be a dinner and a dueling piano show.
I have been to one other dueling piano show prior to this and  it is an experience I will always remember and was anxious to watch one again.
We took a taxi to a very swanky upper class country club. It was beautifully lit in the warm Vegas evening. The night began with hor devours to die for. Then a dinner buffet that made the hor devours taste even better as it was not that great.

After a little more socializing and a chance for the overindulge-rs to do just so, the entertainment began.

I was so excited for the show. It started out just as I expected, Billy Joel, Van Morrison, Jimmy Buffet and all the classics. There was a performance by a terrific Rod Stewart impersonator, complete with twirling microphone stand. And then, it turned quickly into a hair band concert of the 80's... one of the artists stood on the pianos belting out a guitar solo from AC/DC so loud I am sure they could hear it in San Francisco.

It was still fun to dance to and it got a little crazy as it was open bar that night also. I still had the time of my life. Let loose and let off some stress.

But am I really getting that old? Am I really turning into one of those old women? It was so loud my ears rang for hours afterward, the nineteen year old girls were driving me crazy, the guitar solos went on a little too long, and I preferred the softer classic rock to dance to.
The highlight of the evening? (insert sarcasm mark here) was getting hit on continuously by a very drunk older man while his fiancĂ©e stood two feet away glaring at me. Apparently I was the 'sexiest girl in the whole room' and was 'rocking my dress'.

But those were just the highlights. It was truly a great time and I was grateful for the time away.

Downside to the trip is in the ten minutes I spent with my parents, I managed to catch the flu and have been fighting it for a week. It could have possibly been that my friend was always directly too hot to my too cold and drove with the windows down partially in 20 degree weather.

My son is coming to town tomorrow to spend a couple weeks with us for Christmas I will be drinking up the Vitamin C and resting up to make this the best Christmas yet!

Anyone ever been to a dueling piano show? Do you prefer it up loud and crazy? Am I acting like an old lady?  I can take it - tell me the truth     Maybe it was the flu coming on.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Catching up

WOW has the month gotten away from me!
So much has happened since I posted last but I have had absolutely no time to post.

My baby turned eighteen on the sixth of December and made me feel as though this life is moving along at warp speed. I have now nearly solo raised three children into adulthood. No small feat but also the most amazing and gratifying thing I have ever done. My most prized accomplishment.

Her birthday was both wonderful and bitter. Her father has a way of spitting on any happiness they have. An absent father who is more likely to call them on his own birthday than on any of theirs, makes life hard. I can count on one hand the number of things beyond child support that man has done for his children. Included in that handful of joy are the number of times he has contacted them, either by letter, phone call or physical visits.
You would think that a text message to her for her birthday from this 'father' of hers would be a step in the right direction, but it was rather brought my poor girl to tears.
A little background prior to the message: The father of my children is now on marriage number three. I being his first wife, we have three children. He had two more children with his second wife with whom he also has little to no contact. Wife number three is a widow with four children of her own. Children whom are stop children to him and who have more contact with him than his own blood children. Blending families is tough, step-children require as much love and attention as blood-born children. And he is a wonderful step father.
However, his blood children are nearly non-existent in his life.
He has also recently joined a new church, one in which he is able to repent for the sins in his life. We know this because in the social website Facebook, he has been openly cleansing his conscience. His divorces, his porn addiction, and more.....
Apparently relationships lost are not one of those things he wishes to change. As I wrote recently about his relationship with his mother (also lost to this new church calling) and my kids. Also posted on this social website for the world and his/my children to see is day by day activity on a mission he served for this church.
Good for him right? Not so fast! This wonderful example of a father, is out preaching to the masses of a third world country on the importance of family. Hypocritical way to sling some shit right?
Of course my children take it with a grain of salt.... a grain that stings just a little in the open wounds he has created.
But- let's get back to her happy birthday text. It is an effort on his part right? well, it would have been..... had it come on the correct date, and free of excuses of his schedule being so busy. To busy to send a two minute text message to his daughter?
It takes more than one hand to count the number of times I have consoled the tears of my children caused by this man. I keep hoping it will get easier the older they get.... it does not. They love him dearly, they continue to hope he will be the father they think he should be, but they are coming to realize he may never be.

Christmas will be the tightest ever this year. Many a December I have spoken to my kids about the slimness of Santas pocketbook. Never have they been disappointed. With my continued unemployment, this will be the lightest Christmas yet... and yet, my now grown children are not concerned at all. They have voiced those same words I myself have spoken to them on oh too many occasions in the past.
We have never had a bad Christmas, it is all about being together, not what we get or give each other.

God but I love these kids!~