Monday, June 27, 2011

So I bought an mini van...

So back in November I bought a mini van.  I was so excited.  We had talked about and even picked out a truck but a mini van seemed so...ROOMY!!  With TVs for the kiddos and everything!  So out with the huge gas guzzling Suburban and in with the great on gas mommy mobile...the Town & Country!  And I love it.  Yes, I get teased by my friends on occasion and my 15 year old probably doesn't think it's the coolest thing but the girls LOVE it too!!  The doors open with a touch of a button and the bonus is that Hailey doesn't need so much help getting in and out as she did in the Suburban.

But we didn't really think about a couple of things. 

First of all, it can not, will not pull a boat...and I have a boat.  Bummer.  Never even thought about that problem since we don't use the boat in the winter and it was raining when we exchanged huge Suburban for little old mini van.  So this year, the little speed boat is retired.  We are giving her a rest from the camping and the weekend river trips and the lake hauls and everything.  No biggie...No boat.

Second of all, it can not, will not fit our camping gear in it.  Well technically it will.  But we look like the Griswolds and we have to take a second car to carry hubby, the two giant dogs and the two 15 year olds...oh and the firewood.  Oh and the second car has to have the bikes tied to the back of it.  And the girls and I pretty much have room for our legs (sort of) and we are squeezed in like sardines.  There are 4 giant bins of camping gear tied to the luggage rack. It is actually pretty ridiculous when you think about it!

I should have taken pictures but it is dark now and you just wouldn't get the full effect of the Griswold-ness that it represents!  I am going to post pictures when we get back but for now, you will just have to use your wonderful imaginations and laugh with me!

We did get it all the mini van and a second car.

I mean, I thought these mini van things were supposed to have the most room of any vehicle ever!  NOPE!!

I miss my Suburban...and my hubby's truck.

Hopefully when we are done with this camping thing, I can go back to loving my mini van!!

Saturday, June 25, 2011


Our family loves amusement parks. If we ever had enough money to take a serious vacation, we would rent an RV and go roller coastering across America!

For now though we will have to settle for short trips in California...Six Flags, Disneyland, Great America. And we all love it!  Six Flags Discovery Kingdom is only about an hour away from us.  We all have season passes and a parking pass and we use them as often as we can!

Yesterday we went to Strawberry Kingdom (yes, the name is actually Discovery Kingdom but the 4 year old has renamed it...we now all call it Strawberry Kingdom...we are not sure why!).  And it was, as usual...AMAZING!!

Everyone had the normal wonderful good time...lots of rides and laughing and running around.  A couple of shows & a look at the elephants (my personal favorite!).

This time, Hailey tried Medusa. For those of you that have never been is a huge roller coaster. The biggest that they have...with lots of upside down flips and twists and turns.  She has never been on this one before but she wanted to try it.  So she was able to choose which adult was going to go with her...Mommy (yes, I am her favorite and have been known to say things like, "you don't have to fight over how wonderful I am" to the girls when they are battling for who I will ride with) or Bum (my hubby's name is Tim but she can't say her Ts so she has called him Bum for years!! ha ha ha...).

Of course she is going to choose me.  Of course!!...WRONG!  I think I actually gasped!

She chose Bum!

So I tried to put on a happy face (even though I was going to have to sit out the biggest roller coaster so I could stay with the 4 year old...who is still 8 inches too short to go on it)...and I watched her run off into the ride line (or exit since she gets to skip the line)...and then I stood under the ride watching her go up the giant incline in the huge seat with her little tiny feet sticking out...Oh my she looked so little.

And I was scared.  Normally I am sitting next to her so I feel a little more in control, even though I am not.  So when I waited for them to come out of the exit, I expected her to be all tears...So...

She comes running out of the exit, with her 15 year old brother on one side and his 15 year old buddy on the other side of her, holding their hands...LAUGHING!!  My hubby was trailing behind (apparently it is way uncool to hold the hand of your step dad or any adult for that matter at an amusement park) laughing himself.  So apparently she kept signing and saying more and was so excited and had the best time!

It was such a typical child moment for her that I am so glad that we are able to give her. With all of the challenges that she faces..all of the therapies and the stares and the frustration that she gets...Amusement parks are a place that she loves where it doesn't really matter that other kiddos stare at her or people ask about her disorder...It is a place where she could care less because her only goal is to get to the next rollercoaster, to the next ride, to the next show.  Her only goal is to laugh with her family.  It is one of the only places that having a disability like hers actually has an advantage...for her and for her siblings.  She never has to wait in line.

And that just gives her more time to go on more roller coasters and have more fun!!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

So afraid to fail

I have been so tired over the last few days and not at all in the mood to do much of anything.  I really just felt like I've been coming down with something but after talking with my hubby, I think it is something more.

I'm pretty sure that I am afraid to fail.

I have never really had that feeling in my life.  I normally just jump head first into most situations.  I don't over think things and I don't have difficulty making decisions...or at least I didn't.

While I was a part of the yacht chartering business with the villain (also known on my birth certificate as my father), I was confident, business savvy, and really really good at what I did.  I worked my butt off and enjoyed pretty much every minute of it.

Then everything fell apart when the villain decided that I didn't belong there anymore.

And I still held onto my confidence, for awhile.

I applied for high end jobs making a comparable salary.  I made it to the final interview for 3 very high profile positions.  It was between me and one other person....then they would hire the other person.  I did know that the villain was giving me a terrible reference and that was basically what the decision was coming down to in the I kept the little engine that could.

And then one day, I quit.

I quit applying, I quit trying to get positions, I quit networking, I quit learning, I quit looking. 

I decided that I was right where I was supposed to be...failing.  That if my own father couldn't even bother to give me a reference so that I could keep food on the table for his grandchildren...if he could put me in the situation to lose my home, cancel my disabled child's medical insurance without notice (along with the rest of the families)...If he could retain attorneys and require that I hire one too (therefore having to cash in all of my retirement accounts), if he could forget that I was his daughter...If he could treat me like a competitor and not family...then why should anyone else give me a chance?  Why should I keep trying.

So I quit.

But it's been 2 years and 9 months and I have to say, I'm sort of sick of being afraid.  So I started something new.  I went and got my real estate license and signed on all of the dotted lines.

And now it is up to me to start moving forward.  But that's why I've been so tired...because I don't want to start...because I am afraid to fail.  I am afraid that he was right and that I'll always be a loser.  I am afraid that the voice that is him in the back of my head will make me fail.  I am afraid that all of the disappointment that I felt, that my family felt will resurface.

But I can't feel that way forever right?  And how do I overcome that?  I have to just start.

So today, I ordered my business cards, finished setting up my mls accounts, set up my home office, made a list of things that I needed and made an appointment for my training to start...all while really wanting to lay down and take a nap.

Who knows, maybe I'll fail, maybe I won't but my hope is that I will at least succeed in proving the villain wrong...that I will survive without him and I will be successful despite of him.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Control Freak

I am a control freak (I can hear all of my friends & family, not you!!!).

I like to have control over everything...I've talked before about how that OCD control freak behavior was intensified when Hailey was born.  The strong need to control everything else, since I couldn't control her disorder.

So my New Years Resolution was to let go of some of those things.  Here are some of my successes (and my failures).

SUCCESS:  I've finally let go of my addiction to cigarettes.  I quit in January and have only had 3 cigarettes since the day I chose to quit.

FAILURE:  I can't seem to lose the 10 pounds that not smoking has slapped on my hip area & I can't get hubby to want to quit no matter what tactic I've used.

SUCCESS:  I've finally let hubby take over the finances in the house.  I decided that if we don't have savings or the bills don't get paid on time, I DO NOT care!  The finances make me actually want to scream all of the time and it has been a huge relief to not control that.

FAILURE:  It's only been a few days since I've let go of the finances & I'm still sneaking peaks at the bank accounts to see how he's doing (shhhhh...lucky he never reads my blog!!)

SUCCESS:  I only allow myself to do the laundry 2 times a week.

FAILURE:  I can't possibly leave garbage in the bathroom garbage cans, no matter how I hard I try.

SUCCESS:  I let go of the need to control the manner & way that I made up with my sister and her best friend after a huge camping blowout disaster last matter what they did, I still dug my heels in and refused to forgive either of them...when I let go of that, I found that I wasn't even angry (oh and I discovered over the last few weeks that there are worse things than our stupid fight).

FAILURE:  It took me 6 months of trying to make myself let it all go & in the meantime, I acted like a complete jerk and did things that were ridiculous and unspeakable...basically acting like a 13 year old in a 35 year old body!

SUCCESS:  I let go of trying to make everyone happy all of the time.  I have found that I am much happier since I stopped trying to make other people happy. 

FAILURE:  I am still trying to balance the concept of not needing to make anyone else happy and not caring how other people feel...It's a fine line that I'm still balancing.

So you see, most of the successes are things that I am still working on...who knows I'll probably fail and I'm certainly not really successful at leaving the house messy (at fact right now, I'm looking over and there is a dish in the sink & it is making me crazy!!).  And my failures are certainly tied right into my successes...but I am trying.  I am trying to be much less of a control freak and not lose who I am all at the same time.  Because let's face it, part of the reason that I am who I am is because I can't leave that tissue in the bathroom garbage and that I asked for a gas leaf blower for mother's day so that I could have a perfectly clean & free from dust garage every day!!  Baby steps, you know?