Wednesday, April 20, 2011

"Time is a valuable teacher. Unfortunately, it kills all its students"

Yesterday we had the girls over for a few hours, while Jethro went to a job interview.  Someone, who may or may not have been me, had the bright idea that we should color eggs.  It seemed like a good idea.  I think God lets mothers forget how things truly are with toddlers, so that when they are grandmothers, they do things like color eggs or make cookies or do crafts with the grandkids instead of curling up in a corner, sobbing about the trauma of egg coloring and how it should be banned.

Somewhere I have a picture of a two year old Jethro, surrounded by colored eggs (the color of mud, I believe), his hands stained with egg dye.

Now I have pictures of 4 year old Justice and 2 year old Hope, with their hands stained with egg dye.  (Food coloring, actually)

We made tie dyed eggs.  For this you hard boil the eggs, then put them in a colander over bowl or pan (to catch the drips).  You sprinkle some white vinegar on the eggs, and then take your first color.  We used yellow first. You drip a drop over the eggs, then gently shake the colander to spread the color.  Then you go to your next two colors.  The eggs I have seen online are really pretty.  Ours? Eh.. well, not so much.  The girls also took candles to color on their eggs before they dyed them, to see the patterns that emerged.  Hope merrily dropped hers on the way to the refrigerator, and for a moment, I wasn't sure who was going to catch the rolling egg, her or BDG.  She did!  We rinsed off her egg and then she got to eat it.  Well, since she got to eat her egg, of course, then Justice wanted to eat HER egg.

We're getting low on hardboiled, decorated eggs.

I had some violets (purple and confederate) and a few other blossoms I was pressing.  Somehow, in the midst of egg decorating chaos, the newspaper I had the flowers in became lost.  That upsets me because I wanted to decoupage some blown eggs with the flowers.  There are still violets blooming, of course, but mine were almost dry.  It will take too long to press some more so they'll be dry before Sunday.

I have lots of pictures, but it's too hard to get them out of the camera and to this computer right now.

Am I feeling better than I was a few days ago?  Yes.  Am I still in pain? Always.  Some days it's worse than others, and when it's bad, the pain makes it difficult to walk.  Or, in all honesty, to want to live.  Luckily, all days aren't that bad for me.

So, we had the girls, and then later in the evening, we had thunderstorm watches that rapidly turned into tornado warnings. The sirens were wailing like crazy, as more funnel clouds were spotted around town and right outside the town.  I opened the door at one point, thinking I might get my tomato seed starters out of the rain, and the door pulled out of my hand.  Right as it did that, the lower glass portion fell out.  I caught it, thank goodness, and managed to get it put back, but that wind was something else.  The skies were green, it was humid, and even early in the evening, I could feel it was going to get bad.

No damage, though.

Do you guys know what happened to the felony sexual abuse case we were involved in?  (One of my children was sexually molested, the person doing it confessed her guilt to me, her husband was with us when we turned her in, and for two years, we've been fighting this in the court system.  First, she confessed her guilt.  Then she realized the judge did something wrong, so her guilty plea was taken away.  There are videos and pictures of my child on the internet, and the new police chief, investigating another case, said, "Those pictures are there forever!"  Then why didn't the police find the ones of my kid?  Anyway, the prosecuting attorney, thinking she might not win the case, dismissed the charges.  That's what we were told.  This person lawyered up, and apparently, if you do that, our prosecuting attorneys think they might not win, and why go after the person if you can't win the case, right?

I watched my child crumble.

It took all his courage to even show up, and when he was told the charges were dismissed, he slumped down, fighting tears.  He took off from the office, his wife following after him as fast as she could, right after she said, "Yeah, no wonder people take the law into their own hands."

Then this woman threatened to sue us, because of false charges.

She told me she did it.

I know what happened, and I know about the sex site she and her husband ran together.

And the police couldn't find it.  Or didn't look very hard\ when they confiscated the computers.

So, there's your advice for the day.  Just get a lawyer and keep your case in court for a couple of years.  You'll be let off, scott free.

And for my kid?  It's as if they said, "This never happened to you."  And if the circumstances were different and it was a man and  a juvenile girl?  That man would do at least 6 years in prison.

Get it together, society.  Sexual abuse happens with grown women against boys, not just men against women.  Abuse is abuse is abuse.  It's not a rite of passage.  It's horrible, cruel, and wrong, and no matter what gender the monster has, if takes advantage of your child that way, they should be punished.

The attorneys didn't take into account that this woman was pregnant by another juvenile during the ending months of this court case.

I can't write any more on this.  It makes me want to vomit.

I know.  I started out kind of with a cute story, and now I switched to something darker.  Well, welcome to my brain.

One thing I was thinking this morning was how I really dislike people who love or give conditionally.  You know. I'll love you if you do this.  I'll give if you give back.  I would never do that to any of my kids or my other family members, or even my friends.  When I was in the ICU with pneumonia, we had friends of ours sending money so Jethro could get to me. No questions asked.   Just because we're friends and they love me and they love Jethro.  My mom loved us this way, though at one time, years ago, she said if one of us were gay, she wasn't sure she could love us.  I think she would have.  She wouldn't have liked it, but she would have loved us.  I can say that now, she's gone, but I believe it.

I started to write a poem about it all, but it made me too sad.  So then I looked at crafts I want to do and thought, "Wow! I always thought something could be made from a dog food bag, but never knew what!  That's awesome!"   Garden Tote

Erma and I have made some neat things using Dimensional Magic, and I want to try some resin jewelry soon.

Now I'm back in a happy place.

Jethro is coming over soon.

Not with the girls, though, I don't think.

And Mr. Clean just called. He sounds depressed and wants to talk.  I said he could come over for a little bit.

Okay, that's it for now.

I'll post pictures soon.

I'll just post this and be done.

(from layoutsparks)

Beauty Pain White Rose

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Guess What??

My homemade yogurt is actually turning into yogurt!!  (Last time it turned into, well, milk with plain yogurt stirred into it, and it didn't thicken at all.)  Now, it's thickening!  I was so shocked that I nearly shrieked, but I knew that would scare the kids, so I didn't.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Fun at The Parks

We'd just arrived at the park, and Hope wanted to swing.  Saige said, "Hold on!" gave a  little push, and Hope immediately fell off.  Hoping to catch the joy of childhood swinging, instead I caught a terrified little girl falling out of the swing.  Oops.

Justice was TERRIFIED of heights and slides.  Absolutely terrified.  There was another little girl at the park, about her size, who had no fear.  Justice would watch her, and stay on the steps, still afraid to move. Finally she got enough courage to go down a little slide, as long as Saige was there to catch her.  Saige convinced her to go down this big, covered slide, and look at the joy on Justice's face.  She was so thrilled she started going down the slides all by herself!

The great slide race of 2011.  Hope is on the bigger slide, and Justice is on the smaller one.

Three little girls, playing together.  And by playing I mean running around after each other and screaming at the top of their lungs.

Hope, keeping safe from falling by going in the baby swing.


Macrame and Jethro showed up to pick up the girls, and Jethro decided he needed to swing, too.

I love Saige's expression here.  She's looking at Jethro like he is the most amusing person on the planet.

Lampshade and Ambrose

It takes all of Lamp's concentration to play on this thing.

Britney, Saige and Erma.  Yes, Britney is really small.  No, my girls aren't giants.

I think Saige is frightened of the water, as she seems to have covered her face in the above photo.

Lamp, Saige, and Britney.  Apparently Lamp thinks he's sexier without his shirt.  I'm just glad he left his pants on!

Saige, in the Christmas Tree Forest

Lampshade attempts a sailor's hornpipe dance atop this jungle gym.

As always, I seem to have no clue what's going on.

The sisters

Britney and Lampshade, who are apparently splitting up today.  She's packing her things.  We go through this a lot, so I'm just shrugging my shoulders and rolling my eyes.

When Emmie and I were little, one day Mom MADE us wear dresses to school.  On the way home from school, even though I'd worn mine all day and had been seen by numerous other kids, I decided that I couldn't be seen any more, and I hid in a large sewer pipe. (I think Emmie did, too, but I'm not sure)  This photo of Erma reminds me of that day.

Saige, at the bridge near the Environmental Center 

Have fun!

Go in peace, be warm and filled.

April 12th

What is the significance of today's date?  Other than, you know, the 50th anniversary of manned space flight, of course.  In the whole scheme of things, who cares about that? (I kid, I kid!)  

No, today is the 150th anniversary of the firing on Fort Sumter, or the official start of the Civil War.

I have the girls here (my fake granddaughters who aren't Anna, who I also count as a fake grandkid, because I can) so this entry might be even more scattered and random than other entries.  Then again, you might not be able to tell the difference.  

Okay, now it's the 13th.  Saige and I took the girls to the park, to let them run off some steam and to play.   I was too busy to post, as the girls have had a rough couple days and they need a lot of attention right now.

On Sunday, if you remember, we went to one park to have a picnic, and then we went to the environmental center after that.  I love, love, love this center.  It's been around for many years now, and I can remember going there when it only had 4 trails.  The longest one went past the bottling plant along the Sangamon River, and there was a very old, rusted out, filled with sand and mud, bit of a car stuck there.  I haven't been able to walk there for a long time, and besides, the trails have changed, so I don't know if that car is still around.  It was a place my Mom loved, too.  She absolutely thrilled to go during the spring, to see all the flowers coming up.  My son, Jethro, loved to go with her, too, even as a teen.  Mom would always say, with amazement, how wonderful she thought it was that he, even though he was a teenager, loved to go walking with her there. The last time they went, they looked for bluebells, and finally spied some, and Mom was really happy.

There were tons of bluebells along the path to the Trobaugh-Good house.  Tons.  I smiled to see them, because it felt like a "Hello!" from my mother.

This isn't the best picture, but these are Virginia bluebells.  I tried to edit it a little bit to bring out the blue color of the flowers, but I had trouble doing that, so I gave up.  You get what you get.

Erma's picture is a little bit better as far as color, but the flowers aren't as big as in my photo. I guess that doesn't matter much if you can't see the blooms!

Every time I go here, I take pictures of this plow that this tree has grown around.  The plow is embedded in this tree.  So much in this town changes drastically--homes are torn down, businesses close and are torn down, schools change and are torn down--and I like it when things are the same, like this plow in the tree, for a long time.  

In the above picture, the kids are on the trail heading towards the Trobaugh-Good house.  On the right hand side are a bunch of Osage Orange trees, which were used as windbreaks against the prairie winds.  

Trobaugh-Good house, which was first a log house (different than a log cabin in that the logs were more finished than in a cabin), and then as time went on, the owners added more rooms to it.  At one time there were about 15 people (adults and kids) living in that house.  

Erma and Ambrose, posing in front of the Trobaugh-Good house.  Years ago, Erma was a volunteer here, and she wore a pioneer dress and apron that my mom sewed for her.  She still has it, and I imagine she'll keep it forever.  I'm impressed at how well Mom did, because that was some pretty difficult sewing.  I'd have given up, thrown the material and sewing machine into a wall, and screamed that I hate pioneers.  And volunteering.  

My sewing skills are not any good.  Can you tell?  I'd like to know how to sew, but alas, that is one skill my mom couldn't pass on to me.  I know I've said this before, but when I showed up at her house when she was going on hospice, she wanted me to help her cut down her nightgowns and sew ribbons to the back, so that they became like hospital gowns, only more comfy.  I was doing my best, but I will never forget Mom taking my work from me, giving it a horrified look, and saying, "Oh, Cindy!"  Then we both laughed.  There's no helping me in that department, I'm afraid.

I have a picture of a little  tiny two year old Lampshade in front of this tree meat smoker.  In that photo, he's smaller than the door to this thing.  

Lamp was pretending to pump water.  I told him he was a lousy pioneer, because he didn't prime the pump.  He ignored me, because he didn't know what I meant by priming the pump.

He was actually pretty funny that day, and was saying all sorts of ridiculous and silly things.

He pointed out the very old and antique pioneer plastic chocolate milk bottle.

Like a bored tour guide, he intoned seriously about the old, antique stick pile.  "As you can see," he droned on, "our sticks are doing well, and are multiplying to make this nice pile."

Saige was pretending to roast marshmallows on the antique pile of sticks, while Erma took photos in the background.  

The wasps are out now.  I can stand bees.  I know they are beneficial, and you know, I like honey.  However, I do not like wasps.  I'm not afraid of them, even though I've been stung (and boy, does a wasp sting hurt!), but I don't like those insects one little bit.  Oh, I know they have their benefits, but so do dung beetles, and they're not my favorite thing in the world, either.

There were a bunch of wasps on the insides of the windows at the house.  

As we left the area, I spied something that made me realize why there are so many wasps around.

Stupid wasps and their stupid wasp nests.  (Actually, saying that wasps have wasp nests is a bit silly, isn't it?  It's not like wasps would have stupid birds nests.  Or beaver nests. )

We all checked out the pond before we left the park.  

Apparently that shallow area held a lot of interest for everyone.  I don't know why.  This is the pond I slid into many years ago, when I was fishing with the kids.  My line got stuck in a tree, and as I worked to free it, I slid straight down the bank and into the pond.  It was deep and very muddy, but I kept giggling as I worked to climb out.  When I finally made it, sopping wet and covered with mud (and without my line), Saige looked at me and exclaimed, "Oooh!  Can I go swimming, too?"

When we came home, the girls "helped" plant some of the things we had.  They were really cute as they tried to help Saige put in the plants.

That's all there is for now.  Go in peace, be warm and filled!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Walking in the Wilderness

Wow, that title could encompass so many things, couldn't it?  Like, a wilderness of life, where things are dark and dreary.  Or, a wilderness where you go walking or hiking.  In this case, it means nothing, because I didn't walk in any wilderness of any sort.

Though we did go to a couple parks yesterday.

Erma and Ambrose spent Saturday night.  Then yesterday was so nice we decided, thanks to Saige's idea, to go on a picnic.

I don't know what that white blotch is in the corner of the photos.  It might be a ghost, but then again, it's probably a smudge on the lens.  A ghost that travels around to be just in the right hand corners of pictures is, I'm sure, a rare ghost indeed.  And since I don't believe in ghosts, well, I have to think it's just a smudge.  

We ate by the duck pond.  Though it's been redone since I was a kid, the Civil War cannons and Memorials are the same.

When I was a young teen, there were some Vietnamese or Laotian refugees who were staying with a woman from our church.  We were playing with them and worried, I asked the little boy, Sang, if he knew what the cannons were.  "Yes!" He replied brightly as he climbed on to one of the bigger cannons."  "Dis my horsie!"

Kids are really resilient, aren't they?

This time we didn't take any, uh, sexually silly photos by the Phallic Symbol Memorial.  You can thank me now.

Look!  Spring beauties!

Ye olde duck pond

If you look very, very closely, you can see Britney (far right, really high) and Saige, by the girl in pink, swinging away.  Apparently some of the girls wanted Saige and Britney to push them on the swings, but were told no.  So one little girl decided to push Saige.  However, instead of pushing her, she smacked her on the booty.  Saige busted up laughing, and decided to leave these swings for the little ones.

Hmm.  I have a lot of photos of Lampshade on top of slides, or in trees.  

I kept trying to catch him in some sort of action shot, like here where he's doing pull-ups, but he moves too fast.  One minute he's doing pull-ups, the next he's climbing on a slide, the next he's running off to some other thing that catches his interest.

We did our absolute best to stay off ice.  It was difficult, but we managed.

These would be ducks.

This would be Saige, running after a Canadian goose in an attempt to befriend it.  The goose didn't really want to be friends.

Nope, not at all.

Saige did get pretty close to the goose.  Erma and I decided that if Saige had had salt to put on the goose's tail, then she might have caught it.

Erma and Ambrose posed for pictures with a styrofoam cup.

Ambrose and Erma.  

Britney and Erma

Erma and Ambrose. (Notice a theme?)

Lampshade and Britney

It was here that we decided to stop writing in the journal, because it was taking too long to upload pictures, and I had no patience any more.  Er, I mean, we had decided to go to the environmental center, so we were leaving the park.

Honestly, it makes me sad that I have to pay so high a price with pain when I go out to enjoy a little trip like this.  We didn't even walk very much, at least, not while I was there, but today I'm in bad, bad pain.  Of course.  I realized, at the environmental center, how slowly I move, and how ponderous I feel.  

Ah well.  I put a call in to my doctor's office to see if the results of my blood work are back yet, but alas, they  haven't called me back.  It's Monday, so I'm sure they are busy.  Still, they should call me immediately, if not sooner!  These doctor's offices rarely listen to my instructions, and call whenever the dook they want.  

Okay, go in peace, be warm and filled.