Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Impulse Control ... What's That?

   I think I've know this for a while but just finally accepted it today.  I have no impulse control.  I have a totally obsessive, over the top personality.  I just cannot tell myself no, which I guess also means I have little to no self-control but I'm not willing to face that flaw yet today too.  I finally came to the realization that I have no impulse control after going to Wal-Mart on my lunch break today for two things, fabric stabilizer and a salad, (not to be used jointly) and instead came out with $60.00 worth of stuff.  Was it stuff I needed? Somewhat.  Was it stuff I could have lived with out?  Definitely.  Is it stuff I will actually use? Absolutely. 

   Now for a little explanation on what I actually went in for, the fabric stabilizer and salad.  I needed the stabilizer for a dress that I'm altering for my cousin for her first communion and the salad was for lunch.  So it should have been a short, painless, cheap excursion into the store.  I knew just where the stabilizer was and how much I needed and I knew exactly where the salads are in the store.  But on my way to the very back of the store to get the stabilizer, I passed the cutest, sealable carafes that I just had to have for my kitchen because they were the exact colors I'm using.  I could see all the dried rice and beans I just bought as a nod at eating healthier stored in them so prettily. So I grabbed them and instead of heading toward the fabric section, I turned down the next isle and found a rug gripper that might help keep the new rug I just bought a few weeks ago to stay put in my foyer.  Are you seeing the pattern here?

  My loss of control didn't stop there though.  As I walked down the sewing isle toward the stabilizer which is literally on the very back wall of the store, I also remembered that I couldn't find my sewing gauge, so I grabbed one of those.  And next to it I noticed a bobbin case and I didn't have one of those to help corral all those pesky little bobbies that are like precious jewels because they are so difficult to replace.  I mean you would think that all the sewing machines made by the same brand would use the same size bobbin but this is just not the case, but I digress.  So a few more things caught my eye and made it into the cart before I finally made it to the stabilizer but they are all very useful items that will come in handy with my sewing crafts but the point is that they weren't do or die things.  Will they make the job a little easier? Yes. Were they essential to completing the project? No.  Did I need them to make my life complete?  Of course!!

  I'd really like to tell you that my insanity stopped there and I grabbed my salad and ran from the building (after paying of course) like the hounds of hell were fast at my heals but alas, no.  On the way to the produce section of the store, I had to pass the boys clothing section.  Now, there was a time when buying clothes was my life.  I longed to wear new and pretty things that were usually pretty expensive.  I've grown up a lot in that respect as in that I no longer care about name brands and I will wear something until it absolutely has to be thrown away or made into a dust rag.  But you see I have this beautiful, precious, little creature now with the softest ivory skin and palest blonde hair that deserves to be the best dressed little boy around and looks so gorgeous in any color under the sun.  And Wal-Mart has really stepped up their game on the kids clothes.  They have the cutest little shirt and short sets right now for $7.00.  I mean $7.00!!  Can you believe that?!?  Being the realist that I am and possessing some sense of logic, I know that it is not wise to spend an exorbitant amount of money on kids clothes as they are not capable of keeping their Spaghetti-O sauce from running down their chin onto their clothes.  Or at least my child isn't.  So to me, getting him an adorable outfit that he may only wear once and will probably roll around in the grass in for $7.00 is a bargain. 

  And getting just one or maybe two outfits would be perfectly normal, but I don't get one or two.  I get one of all of them that they have in his size.  See, no impulse control!  I didn't do that today thank goodness so maybe I'm learning.  Or it could have been the fact that I was still thinking about all the craft junk I had just put in the cart. Now I know what you might be thinking.  The kid's gotta have clothes and that's way more important that my craft stuff.  And you would be right, except that I just bought him 7 or so outfits two weeks ago before he went to visit his dad because he had to have clothes that were appropriate for a sub-tropical climate. (His father lives in South Florida which I am certain is one of the many portals to hell which is the only explanation I can come up with to explain the unbearable heat they endure. I'm certain that there is something in the water to make them all believe they enjoy living in temperatures that are second only to that of the sun. But I digress again.)  So needless to say, he didn't need any more clothes.  I'd be willing to wager that the boy has more clothes than BeyoncĂ©. (Not really but he's got a lot.)

   After finally making it to the produce section to get my salad for lunch, I also remembered that I didn't bring anything to snack on this afternoon to keep me from raiding the sugar and calorie filled snack machine when my sweet tooth inevitably strikes.  So not only did I get a salad but I got two snacks as well because, you know, I'll need one for tomorrow too and then finally made my way to the checkout where I again had to guard against all the whatnot's that they pile at the register to make people like me spend even more money than they originally intended too.  Sometimes I think I need blinders like a horse at the derby.

  So you see friends.  It is painfully clear that I have a serious mental infirmity that surely can only be cured with intense therapy or through high dosages of anti-psychotic medications.  I mean does anyone else have this problem?  I feel like every time I go into a store, it is a battle with myself, and usually my checkbook, to not spend every penny I own on needless, or even needful, things.  It is a constant struggle to be frugal and try to put money away for safe keeping.  I just can't help it.  I enjoy buying things, even if they aren't for me.  Is that really so bad?

Friday, April 25, 2014

Little Man's Trip to Florida

LM just returned a couple of days ago from his first visitation trip to see his dad in Florida.  He had a wonderful time and was most often to busy to stop and talk to Mommy but his dad made sure to take lots of pictures.  He came home a beautiful honey brown and will a lot less hair than when he left but I couldn't have been happier to see that snaggle tooth grin even if you'd told me I'd just won the biggest powerball jackpot in history.  He spent time at the beach and pool and even went on a short cruise on a real pirate ship.  Even though this was a stressful and uncertain time for the adults, it seems that LM was not affected by any of that and simply enjoyed the time he spent with his dad but was still happy to be back home and back to his normal routine. 



I live in Funky Town, but not the good one.

   I think I have told most of you that I am in love with the decorating blog Addicted 2 Decorating and I read it religiously.  The writer, Kristi, is a self-taught interior decorator and avid DIY'er.  She is so creative and industrious and she inspires me to get in my own house and really let my personality show through and gets my wheels turning to use my creativity and craftiness.  But there's a few problems with letting all of that creativity out of the box.  First, I rent, so I am limited on what I can do with my space.  I can't paint or change the floors or move walls or any of that good stuff because I don't own it.  But there are always ways around that.  I can hang pictures to cover the walls and get rugs to cover the floors.  I've done all that.  The second and probably most overwhelming problem is that I have too much stuff that I am trying to cram into too small of a space.  I have downsized from a spacious three bedroom 1900ish square foot ranch to a small 2 bedroom 1400ish square foot townhouse.  I went from having a lovely craft room/office to a craft closet with office/dressing table.  Also because of the layout of my townhouse there is very little actual wall space even though the rooms are open and quite spacious for the overall size.

  I just have too much junk but it is so hard to part with some of it.  Some things are family pieces that have been passed down and others are things that I have acquired over the years that I am still in love with.  But the clutter is suffocating me and I am dying to refinish some of my new to me furniture and really make the space as bright and colorful as possible.  The problem is that a lot of that furniture is currently over run with moving boxes that contain stuff that I don't know where, or have nowhere, to store.  So I am in a constant funk because my home space is so depressing.  I have the cutest bird theme going on in my kitchen with a beautiful aqua blue, rust red, and burnt yellow color them that I am trying to incorporate into my living and dining areas since they are all open to each other but I still need to keep those spaces open and functional because my pantry and laundry closet live I my dinning space.  I have to keep a certain clearance for the doors to the laundry closet and pantry so right now those doors are propped open with boxes so that I can still get to the washer and dryer.  It's all driving me nuts and I have a serious attack of spring fever but every time I muster up the strength and energy to tackle getting my house in shape I'm overrun with the anxiety of where to start.  I eventually just end up moving stuff from one room to another and never make any real progress. 

  It's so frustrating but I will conquer my foe.  I just need a plan of attack (and possibly a stick of dynamite) and I will get everything unpacked and organized so that the little OCD voice in my head will finally be able to rest, well at least for a minute or two. 

Monday, April 21, 2014

The Blog Tour Continues

Hello and welcome to any travelers continuing along on the blog tour started by Amanda over at Peaches in Missouri and Melissa at Crazy Camp Camacho .  I'm not sure how but I let Melissa talk me into participating in this blog tour to discuss my writing style.  So without any further ado let's dive right in.

Question 1:  What am I working on?
  Well the smart-aleck answer would be this blog tour.  Actually though I am in the process of writing a tutorial on how to create a paper mache alligator.  I just finished creating one for our local gumbo fest booth after much research.  I was very surprised that I was unable to find any such posts that went into detail on how to construct the frame and create the detail associated with an alligator.  I hope to have it completed within the week.

Question 2:  How does my work differ from others of my genre?
     I don't think that my work technically has a genre unless general randomness is considered a genre.  Most of my posts are unrelated other than the fact that they deal with topics that I face in life or just my thoughts in general.  So I guess my work differs from other in that it is doesn't fit into any definable genre.

Question 3:  Why do I write what I do?
     I write as a form of therapy and stress release.  I write about things that are troubling me as a way to talk through them and analyze them.  By putting my thoughts on to paper, or screen in this case, I'm able to focus on specific nuances and details that might otherwise slip past my normal thought processes and therefore I am able to apply a more thought out approach to solving or dealing with the issue.  I also write things that I think will be helpful or amusing to others.  I want other single mothers out there to know that they are not going through this alone and that we all face similar struggles with how best to raise our children.

Questions 4:  How does my writing process work?
   My writing process is quite simple.  I sit down in front of a computer and I let my mind simply release it thoughts through my fingers.  The hardest part of my writing is simply finding the time to actually do it.  I compose a million blog posts in my head through a day but am often unable to get them down before the next has barreled through obliterating that train of thought possibly forever.  My process is that I have no process.  I just type whatever thought crosses my mind.  If you have read my blog for any length of time you are aware of this.  I often start my post with one topic in mind and quite often end up taking a detour to cover something else.

Well, those are the questions that I was asked to answer in today's post.  I hope that my answers were scintillating and informative and will encourage others who are thinking about starting a blog to get out there and show us your stuff.  This should be prove enough that you don't have to have a degree in literature or journalism to write a blog.  A blog should be as unique and individual as the person writing it.  Even if you think that you have nothing of interest to someone else or that your life isn't exciting enough to blog about, do it anyway.  Do it for you and you might just end up helping someone else in the process.  Do it as a way to chronicle the milestones of your children's lives or even just your own.  One day you will have something tangible to look back on and say, "Oh I remember that now when Susie Q colored her eyebrows purple with a permanent marker and it took weeks to grow out and it was right in the middle of school pictures!"  You may be able to look back now and laugh when you cried at the time.  Those will be the memories that you tell their future significant others when they come home for dinner to meet the parents.  Nothing is insignificant if it can bring a smile to just one person.

And now here are a few of the bloggers that I most enjoy following.  Go check them out and I hope that you'll return here for the next misadventure!

Amanda at  The Glouner Family blog . Amanda is a work at home mom of two adorable children.  Somehow she manages to work two part time jobs, educate her children, and be an amazing photographer.

Kristi at Addicted 2 Decorating . Kristi is an interior decorator turned blogger.  She shows how to decorate and redecorate your space by doing it yourself and on a budget.  She is extremely knowledgeable about decorating products and offers lots of tutorials on how to do everything from sewing curtains to building a side table.

Christina Antus at Christina Antus formerly Raisins and Goldfish. Christina lives in Colorado with her husband, two daughters, big-boned cat and resilient goldfish she never remembers to feed.
After the birth of her first daughter, she traded her career in multimedia/web design for a full time role at home with her kids.

Monday, April 7, 2014

The Mad Ramblings of a Single Mom... We're All Mad Here, But All the Best People Are

Lately I've thought about changing the name of this blog from "The Misadventures of a Single Mom" to "The Mad Ramblings of a Single Mom" because it seems that more often than not that's what most of my posts are, just whatever crazy thoughts pop in my head.  My dad often tells me that I share too much and that no one really cares about the mundane events of my life.  But I don't really write this blog to share my whole life story because I think my life is so awesome that the whole world needs to know every minute detail of my life.  I write to get the words out of my head.  Being single now I don't always have another adult that I can share everything with that goes on in my head.  Even if that person isn't really listening, sometimes I just need to ramble because I have so many thoughts and ideas buzzing around in my head that I feel like it my explode if I don't release the pressure.  This blog allows me to do that so to be perfectly honest, it doesn't really matter to me if no one ever reads it.  I don't write for others, I write for myself.  But I guess the question could then be asked, "why do I post the mad ramblings that I've put into writing?"  The answer is I don't know.  I guess my hope is that by writing about the things that go on in my life and how I deal with them helps to soothe my head then maybe someone else will be comforted to know that they are the only one going through those same things and maybe have a little bit more hope that they can get through them too.

Being the night owl that I am, I often find that I'm at my most creative and thoughtful in the wee hours of the night.  It seems that my head can be full of fluff and seem to be devoid of intelligent thought until I lay my head down at night to sleep.  Then the ideas and thoughts start to ping around in the once vacant space until they have multiplied into the thousands and demand to be released.  If I don't head their call and find some way to express them they tend to come out in my dreams and let me tell you I have had some doozies!  I use to keep a pen and paper on my nightstand so that I could jot the ideas down as they came into focus but for whatever reason they never seem to stay there anymore and I'm not one to venture out of my bed once I'm snuggled up tight if I can help it.  So I usually end up laying there milling through the various thoughts that my conscious mind is bombarded by and trying to organize them into something useful.  I've even written poetry in my head before but sadly forgotten it by morning if I didn't write it down as it came to me.  I tell my mom frequently that if vampires really existed I would be their queen because I am such a creature of the night.  First off I hate to be in the sun.  Overexposure is horrible for your skin and I only seem to burn as I get older.  Second I am anything but a morning person and I always seem to get my second wind about 10:00.  For some reason my mind has always thought that night time was the best time to clean or decorate the house or to reorganize all the closets.  I always seem to get this burst of energy when I should be settling down for the night.  I guess my internal clock is just completely out of whack.  But I digress.

I write this blog for me and to occasionally share pictures and stories about Little Man with family that we don't get to see as often as I would like.  I partly write so that they can stay apart of our lives and it helps me feel more connected to them.  But if at any time you feel like you've gone as far as you'd like to on my journey, I'll understand.  Sometimes my mad ramblings overwhelm me to the point that I want to scream just to drown out all the noise in my head.  So I'll understand if you need to get off the crazy bus for a little while and try to find some normal.  We can always swing back around to pick you up later if you change your mind.  Just don't be surprised if I happen to be sliding in on 2 wheels in the middle of the night and rambling on about how to reuse toilet paper rolls for art projects or what shade of blue I want to paint my kitchen when I'm finally able to buy my own house.  Those are just a few of the milder thoughts that pass through my head from time to time.  

"But I don’t want to go among mad people,’ Alice remarked.
‘Oh, you can’t help that,’ said the Cat: ‘we’re all mad here."
Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

When I Grow Up I want to be...

How many people love their job? I mean seriously wake up every morning by jumping out of bed and saying I can't wait to get to work because I completely love my job. Well if you are one of those people good for you. That's great. I'm not.  It takes all my will power to roll myself out of bed and make myself presentable for work. One because I'm not a morning person and two my job doesn't excite me or inspire those kind of feelings that I'm just bursting at the seems until I can do it again.

 Most children have some sort of normal reply when you ask them what they want to be when they grow up. They say things like a doctor or a teacher or an astronaut which are all perfectly normal acceptable responses. When I was asked, my response was always something like I want to be rich or or do something artsy and creative or to be able to shop all day long.  Again all great aspirations but not very lucrative ones since one cannot simply just decide to be rich and apply for that position online. You either have to earn it, marry it, or inherit it. So far the chances of the last two options don't look very promising which brings up back to the dilemma of how to earn money and enjoy the process.

Now most people will say find something you love then find a way to make money doing it and the other half would say that when you turn what you love into a job it takes the enjoyment out of it. My problem is that no one is going to pay me, or at least not pay me well, to read books or play video games all day or crochet for hours on end. Those are the things I love to do. Now the crochet hobby could be a nice little side business if I actually had the time to sit and make things but after working 8 hours a day and then taking care of a 3 year old and a house there isn't a lot of time left over for much more than sleeping.

Don't get me wrong. I don't hate my job. I work at a very nice company with great people and it was a God send when I needed it but it's just not something that really gets my motor running and that I want to spend the rest of my working years doing. It's a job. It serves a purpose, a means to an end.  My dream would be to find a job that I don't dread when my alarm clock goes off every morning and that I find satisfying and fulfilling and am eager to start the next day. Ok maybe not the alarm clock thing because I don't think there is anything that excites or thrills me enough to not want to hit the snooze button once or twice because let's face it, I'm never going to be a morning person.  I just don't see that happening.  But there's got to be something out there that A) I'm good at, B) I can enjoy, and C) I can make a decent living doing.  I just haven't been able to find it yet.

When I was in college I spent a lot of time in the career center taking aptitude and personality tests.  My results always came back with stuff like I should be a fresco muralist or an arc welder and crazy stuff like that.  A lot of the jobs and careers that came back sounded great but the problem was that I would forever be deemed a starving artist if I pursued any of them and hope and dreams don't fill your toddlers tummy.  I just always knew that I was not meant for corporate America.  I've never been a ladder climber because of my fear of heights and even though I'm more than capable, I've never wanted the responsibility of leadership because I have a severe intolerance to ignorance and stupidity.  So far I have just floated from here to there and this job to that one with no real passion for what I was doing.  I always do the best that I can and give my all because I have pride in myself and my work but I'm one of those people who leaves my job at work when I leave for the day.  It doesn't cross over into my personal life.

I'd really just like to find a job that I can be excited about and feel like what I am doing is really worth while and that I'm the best person for that job.  I'd like to be able to express myself creatively and to not have to fit into a box that society and corporate America says is what successful business looks like.  And I'd really like to figure out what that is before I'm too old to do it!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

A Little Bit of This, A Little Bit of That

I haven't abandoned my blog again.  In fact I've missed it terribly but it seems as if there is always something else that has to happen first and there just aren't enough hours in the day to get everything done sometimes.  First off Little Man and I have spent the last month passing this virus or that cold back and forth so it seems as if one of us has been sick every day of March.  Just one of the many reasons that I hate spring.  The weather is at it's most bi-polar with temperatures ranging from 32 degrees in the morning and reaching highs of 70 in the same day.  Combine that with all of God's green Earth going into bloom and it makes for a pretty tough battle on the sinuses.  I love the warm afternoons and the longer days though and the sunshine that we've had recently. 

It's hard to believe that it's already April.  The year is going by so fast and a lot of times I feel that it's speeding on without me and I can't keep up.  My only triumph is that LM is still doing without his boppy except during bedtime.  He's back to sleeping in my bed, which I'm okay with, but I had hoped that him getting a little bit of independence would help with the whole potty training thing.  He's doing a lot better about pee-peeing in the potty but he refuses to poop in it.  He's still not 100 percent using the potty but he does really well at school.  It just seems to be a problem at home for some reason and for the life of me I can't figure out why.  I'm constantly trying to get him to go to the potty but he doesn't want to stop whatever he's doing and go and when I can get him to stop and go to the bathroom he just stands there and plays with the toilet or talks or looks around like he's never seen that room before.  He seems to understand the concept because he knows that if he doesn't use the potty he won't get to go to the big kids class with his friends and play on the "castle" on their play ground but I can't seem to get him motivated to tell me when he needs to go potty or to use the potty consistently.  I've tried everything I can think of.  I've tried bribery which worked amazingly with cutting down on his boppy.  I've tried just taking him to the potty every 20 minutes and making him sit on it for at least 5 minutes and he just holds it until I put his diaper back on.  And I've even tried putting him in big boy underwear so that he would be more aware of having an accident.  I thought that I had struck gold with that method because the first time that he peed in the big boy underwear he immediately called out to me that he had pee-peed and that it didn't feel good and was yucky.  I made a big deal out of changing him and we talked about how next time he needed to tell me when he needed to potty so that he wouldn't have to feel yucky and go through all the clean up again.  However, he never called out to me again that he needed to potty or that he had and I found out the hard way that he had yet again peed in his pants when I made him stop to go to the potty and that he had simply been sitting in for the last 10 minutes.  So now what do I do?  I continue to try everyday to get him to use the potty. Some days he works with me and we celebrate and some days he works against me and I want to pull my hair out.

In other news, I've begun to fear that I'll never find another person to spend my life with.  I've even sunk to the point that I signed up on one of those online dating websites and boy has it been a joke.  90 percent of the matches are nothing that I would consider even remotely attractive and the ones that are fall short in some other category.  I really miss having a best friend that I can share my life with.  When I married LM's dad I really thought that I had found the love of my life and that we would have the fairy tale ending and live happily ever after.  Looking back, I can't pinpoint the exact moment in time that my dream turned into a nightmare but at least now I am able to see the part I played in it all falling apart.  I've done a lot of growing and changing in the past year and I know I've still got more to learn but I know what I want and what I don't what now and I'm pretty sure that I know how to be a better partner and mate to someone now but as my luck would have it my sea of potential significant others has been drastically reduced to a small drainage ditch.  I'm not willing to settle for just a mediocre flare of a sparkler or the quick pop of a bottle rocket type of romance though.  I want the 4th of July, grand finale, fireworks extravaganza worthy of a national hero's homecoming of a love.  So if I have to wait a little longer to find that I will.  And in the mean time, I've got a little boy that looks at me with his grandfather's green eyes and a mischievous smile and that's all I need.