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All posts for the month January, 2009

Ain’t No Living In a Perfect World

Published 30 January, 2009 by itsaheartache

When I was a little kid, I knew exactly how my life was going to end.  I knew what kind of house I was going to live in.  I knew the kind of job I would have.  I knew what kind of man I would marry.  I had my own little perfect world planned out.

Boy, how things change.  

They changed early for me, this is evident.  Being told at 16 that you are pregnant, and especially being told this when you had planned on having ZERO kids… It sort of knocks plans off kilter.

Growing up I was embarrassed by the garage sale clothes I had to wear.  I was mortified by the beater cars my mom drove.  I was humiliated when my mom would show up to school functions straight from work.  She worked on a chicken farm after all.  I shouted more than once “My kids will NEVER wear garage sale clothes; and I will NEVER drive a car with any rust!!”  Most of these outbursts were directed at my mother, and they happened after I was told I couldn’t have something I really wanted.  

When I got my first job at the age of 14, washing dishes for a local restaurant on the weekends, I was able to start buying some of my own things.  This quickly turned into having to support myself on $2 an hour.  I would bring home an average of $50 per week, and at 14 had to buy my own clothes, school supplies, and hygiene items.  It taught me at a young age to fend for myself, but you could say it jaded me slightly.

I’m still jaded, who am I kidding?

Perfection is a tricky thing.  Perfection can translate into an infinite number of areas.  Is anything ever perfect, though?  The optimist in me wants to believe that there are endless ways to improve on anything.  A skewed sense of perfection may drive people to destroy themselves financially, physically, emotionally.  They can be mentally destroyed from the devastation of NOT living up to their own desire to be perfect.  

People spend billions of dollars each year visiting plastic surgeons, therapists, interior decorators… this could go on for a while so I’ll digress.  Do we NEED to be this perfect all the time?  Do we really NEED to have the best, biggest, fastest, strongest, prettiest, thinnest, perkiest… anything?  

Why not be happy with what we have?  Why not be grateful for the things we have succeeded with in life?  If you have a healthy, strong body, why jeopardize your strength and health by forcing foreign objects into it?  Why chisel, vacuum, nip, tuck, anything?  Why the pressure to feel like this is our only option?  Everyone is beautiful (OK, maybe not YOU Renee Zelwegger).  It’s not such a big deal if you can’t fit into a size 4, 6, 8, 10… It doesn’t matter.

No one cares if your TV is 2” smaller than your buddy’s TV.  Save the money and go for a walk with your kids.  Buy them ice cream and let them get the bigger one, even though it will drip all over the place.  They will thank you for it.

When it comes right down to it, we’re all going to die.  Is it really such a big deal to spend so much time on trifles such as how fast your blender is, or how many CC’s your implants have?

20 years ago, I was a snotty 11 year old brat with a tilted sense of reality.  By laying out my perfect world, it was a means of escape from the horrible life I had at the time.  I was being molested.  My mom was gone a lot at night at the bars, bringing home random men.  My big brother, who I adored, had moved out.  By saying “My life will be perfect” it was a way for me to be in control of something.  

Isn’t that all that perfection is; a way for us to be in control of how things turn out?

Perfection as a means of escape, what an interesting concept.  For some people, their struggle to achieve the perfect world results in mountains of debt, health problems, marital troubles, lost friendships – Some really serious issues.  After all, who cares what your credit looks like, just as long as you have a TV so big that people in passing airplanes can see who got voted off Survivor?

Honestly, it has to be exhausting being so perfect all the time.  I don’t claim to be anything more than what I am.  I’m broke.  95% of my things are in storage (They’re just things).  I’m overweight.  I don’t have my purple slider phone.  I still haven’t been to the dentist to get my crown installed.  My left front tooth has a small white spot on it from when I ran into the door.  My fingernails are uneven.  My ponytail is crooked today.  I did an inventory process backwards, resulting in a small panic at two off-site labs.  I’m not, nor will I ever be, perfect.  As frustrating as that may be, I have to accept it.  There is nothing I will ever be able to do to be perfect.  

Thank goodness.

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Woo. 100 Things Post.

Published 28 January, 2009 by itsaheartache

I’ve caught the bug… Enjoy my 100 Things Post!!

1. I always think the worst.  Even when given great news; I think about the bad things that could come from it.
2. My favorite part of doing laundry is folding socks.  
3. I will never know the identity of my real biological father.
4. I think I’m becoming more of a grown up because I’ve developed quite a liking for flakes cereal.  (Raisin bran, Total) 5. I could go all day most days just snacking.
6. I found a really cool purple slider phone on Alltel.com but the shopping cart won’t process.  (Probably a good thing)
7. I’m a really clean person, but have recently been put in my place by my old landlord who claims there are over 2000 dollars worth of cleaning fees to be done before he can rent the old apartment out.  Come on, 2000 dollars?!?!?!
8. Allegiant Air added direct to Vegas flights from the closest airport to me.  You can’t imagine how happy this makes me.  
9. I can crack my toes by standing on them, folded under.  It looks about as gross as it sounds (Sorry Dirk!!)
10. I want to help everyone, but know I can’t.
11. I obsess so much about tasks to be done and things to buy that I write lists upon lists.  Then I re-write them.  Over and over.  
12. I’ve already begun my shopping list for my new place.
13. I looked at my butt in the mirror yesterday and thought about Olympia Dukakis’s character in Steel Magnolias… in the wedding scene they are gossiping about people on the dance floor and she says “Looks like 2 pigs fightin’ under a blanket”.  I need to do some serious jogging.
14. I can’t ski.
15. When the kids move out of the house I am seriously moving out west; probably to Las Vegas.
16. My big brother and sis-in-law are the people I admire the most in this world.  I look up to them more than anyone who has ever been in my life.
17. I have 3 of the most awesome best friends ever.  They’re each so different and I love that about them.  
18. I become distracted by rainbows while driving; always looking for the pot of gold at their ends.
19. I’m semi-afraid of balloons… I can tolerate them from a distance but if you get too close with them I get dodgy.
20. I’m generally pretty level-headed until I get behind the wheel of a vehicle.  
21. Or behind the handle of a shopping cart.
22. Or behind the heels of a slow pedestrian; particularly in the mall or on the Vegas Strip.
23. Maybe I’m not so level-headed after all.
24. I don’t like it when people look at me.  
25. Farts are hilarious to me.  
26. To me, a perfect world would involve billboards everywhere of shirtless Matthew McConaughey, water coolers with Cherry energy drink, and “Fiesta Friday” complete with sombrero-capped cabana boys fetching trays of mini tacos.  
27. I feel guilty if I leave work early, even if I have a legitimate reason.
28. I have more makeup than I will ever use, however continue to buy more.
29. I don’t like it when people do not use their spell check before publishing / sending something.
30. However… I have an unexplainable intolerance for people who criticize grammar and spelling in online forums.
31. I have an even larger intolerance for people who use text messaging acronyms in normal email notes.
32. I cry whenever my kids perform live.  
33. I cannot drink Tequila.  I have a hard time even smelling it.
34. If I go into a store I feel guilty if I do not buy something, even if I am just going with my friend or something.
35. I have only ended 2 “relationships” in my life.  Everyone else has either dumped me savagely, or used the “It’s not you, it’s me – Let’s just be friends” line.
36. I hate that line.
37. I do not think Angelina Jolie is as great as everyone says she is.  To me she’s just a common home wrecker who couldn’t keep her vagina to herself.  
38. I’m not a very sympathetic person.  I’m trying to work on this.
39. If I watch a scary movie with you, I will talk to the people in the movie and probably grab your arm and swear.  Ask Elle.
40. Garage sales are the best; I love them and try to stop at every one that piques my interest.
41. I can’t keep plants alive.
42. I go through phases where for a few months I meticulously file and re-paint my nails every night; and then for the next few months I just keep them trimmed and not polished.
43. I enjoy browsing my sons’ algebra books and doing sample problems.  They get mad at me when I call them out for doing a problem wrong.
44. I need another Dale Carnegie class.
45. I’m so desperate for a permanent full time job that I’m considering *gasp* Manual Labor.
46. All the little annoying mannerisms that my oldest son has?  My nephews and niece think they are hilarious, which leads me to think I need to relax a little about it.
47. People who don’t silence their cell phones in an office the size of the one I work really get under my skin.
48. I can be ridiculously impatient, and it drives me crazy.
49. I love all things Domo-Kun.  
50. When I’m on the phone I doodle compulsively on whatever the closest object is.  
51. I dislike talking on the phone, which is hilarious given that I want to get a new cell phone and new plan.
52. I’m terrified of ladders and open heights.  
53. I’m OK with the fact that I probably won’t marry until later in life.  
54. Tomatoes make me queasy.
55. I love water, and one of my favorite things to do is to sit on the lake and look into the water at the fish.  Bluegill beds are my favorite to watch, because the mom fish hang out looking all mean, waiting for someone to mess with their babies.
56. I don’t feel like my mom loves me as much as she loves my sister.  This isn’t an emo “poor me” statement, it’s merely an observation.
57. People who get ahead by doing next to nothing and skating by based on who they know really make me angry.  
58. I have over 100 pairs of socks.  Less than 5 of these pairs are plain white.  I don’t like plain socks.
59. I wear a size 9 – 9.5 ring.
60. I wear a size 9 – 9.5 shoe as well.
61. I don’t care what anyone says – Still Of The Night by Whitesnake has one of the most amazing bridges ever.
62. When I was 11, I stirred peanut butter into vanilla ice cream, then put on a huge layer of “Magic Shell”.  This was at my dad’s (Well the man who’s on my birth certificate anyway) house; and he raped me for 5 years.  I still can not eat Magic Shell or ice cream with any sort of peanut butter in it because it brings me back psychologically to that place in my life.  
63. I look forward to the kids’ summer vacations because that means I can go into work early without worrying about bus stops and dropping kids off at school.  (Plus they love to sleep in)
64. The first time I tried to make popcorn in our apt. as a kid, I didn’t put a lid on the pot and therefore tried to cover it with a plastic colander.  The colander melted all over the place, the popcorn burnt & stuck to the pan, and what didn’t stick to the pan popped all over the kitchen.  Boy did I get in trouble.
65. My daughters are pitting my ex & me against each other.
66. I worry about what will happen to my kids if they move away from home too early.  I think I will have a hard time letting go, because I don’t want them to have to go through the things I had to go through.
67. Every time I get my hair cut I hate it.
68. When I make pancakes, I like to make extras and save them in a baggie; then eat them like a sandwich later with peanut butter on them.
69. I can’t stand lettuce.  Most of the time if you see me eating a salad it’s because I feel guilty about what I REALLY want to eat.
70. I did a BMI and weight loss calculator today, and at a loss rate of 1 lb. per week it’s going to take me until April of NEXT YEAR to lose all the weight I want to lose.  
71. Maybe I should begin to like lettuce.
72. I’m not ticklish.
73. I really regret the location of 3 of my tattoos.  I want to get “Wrecking Ball” and fade them away.
74. ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ gives me goose bumps every time I hear it.
75. I don’t know how to drive a stick shift.
76. I love to go snow tubing and have almost as good a time as the kids.  Too bad I feel it for days after!!
77. With my current financial depression, my biggest worry is not being able to save enough to move AND be able to book my annual Vegas trip.  I understand how awful and selfish this sounds.  It’s one of the only things I look forward to every year though, so I’m hanging onto it.
78. I’m really good at my job.
79. The smell of Plumeria is disgusting to me.
80. I like to look at Pure Romance catalogs and giggle inappropriately at the pictures.
81. I enjoy singing, really loudly, while driving.  I’ve embarrassed the boys at intersections before.  I also do it in the store.
82. I’m absolutely horrible with directions.  
83. I’m so relieved I was able to bring my own bed to Brother’s house… I love that bed.  
84. I have no real reason for it, but I can’t stand Renee Zelwegger.  I did not know she was in the movie Chicago and am angry that I like that movie so much.  
85. I can crochet, and have about 3 or 4 half done projects.  (In storage LOL)
86. I’m going to finish my book by the end of the year.  
87. At my former job I sent an April Fool email message to my bosses saying that I was going to leave the company to pursue a career in the professional wrestling industry.  They bought it, for a minute, and then I couldn’t keep a straight face.  It was good.
88. For having such an aversion to exercise, I sure do love step aerobics.  I wish there was somewhere with classes nearby.
89. I didn’t know the truth about Santa Claus until 5th grade, and even then it was mean boys from my class who picked on me because I still believed.  I cried for days.
90. I still love to color with crayons, in coloring books.  Sesame Street and Lisa Frank are my favorite types of pictures to color.  I’m also a sucker for a good Christmas coloring book, heavy on the wreaths and Christmas trees.
91. I have never used my blender.
92. The shirt I’m wearing today makes me look like I have one of those old fashioned striped night shirts on.  I’m embarrassed by it and am trying not to do much walking around.  Coincidentally, I have had to walk to either end of our complex today to meetings.  I think the fashion police are waiting outside.
93. The song “Lonely People” by America makes me cry.
94. I have a crush on Guy Fieri.
95. I used to be able to roller skate, but in 7th grade I fell and broke a tooth and I have been too scared to do it since.
96. When my kids play on their skateboards I can barely stand to watch them because I’m sure they are going to hurt themselves (They totally don’t hurt themselves but I’m just having mom panic)
97. The books on my bookcase are first ordered by size, then alphabetically by author, then alphabetically by book title.
98. I’ve lost interest in American Idol.  I never thought this would happen.
99. I don’t play the lottery, but it doesn’t stop me from making imaginary plans with the money I will never win.
100. I think that even given the shortfalls of late, this year will be my best ever.

Published 26 January, 2009 by itsaheartache

You know, for as much as I talk, I sure don’t have much to say lately.  Not here at least.  And that is unfortunate, because believe me, I could go on for days and days.  It all seems very unorganized and un-writer-like.

I’ve been thinking a lot this week.  I’ve not really had much time to do anything else.  I’m trying not to be so self critical.  Having said that, it’s proving to be a lot easier than I had let on.

As a bizarrely unrelated side note – I watched the Katt Williams special on Comedy Central and thought I would pee my pants from laughing.  If you don’t know who Katt Williams is – Google him and watch some stuff on YouTube immediately.  He reminds me of a shorter and more modern Richard Pryor.  He’s hilarious.  

So back to the running on empty… Lately I have felt like I have nothing left to give.  I feel numb, and really nothing has been able to fix this feeling.  Most days I just fumble around the house, not really doing much, just existing.  I’m so tired of this.  Really it’s no one’s problem to fix but my own.  I can say that and feel comfortable saying it.  I’m comfortable telling myself to get the hell over whatever I am feeling so morose about, and get stuff done.  Point blank, there it is.  What is lame is that I can go back and read this damn blog and see where I have said this more than once.

I’m done saying it  (I said that too!! LOL)

Let’s catch up on random nonsense, shall we?

** At work we have this fantastic assortment of energy drinks.  My favorite is Cherry flavored.  I think I may have developed a small addiction to them.  Thank the gods they are only $1.

** I’ve become obsessed with Paper Mate Profile 1.4B extra bold point pens.  

** I made another Yahoo music station, and I think it might be the best one yet.  I titled it “Work Blah” and it’s a fabulous mix of show tunes, coffee house, indie, and 90’s.  It’s a cooler version of the lame light music stations that play at most dentist offices.  I’m excluding MY dentist from this generalization, as she has probably the coolest office music I’ve ever heard.  

** My best friend is moving.  I need to go visit so I can fold her socks and we can belly laugh for hours at nothing, like we used to.  (Remember that?)

** My nephew was looking for songs to put on his I-Pod last night, so I let him browse my mp3 player to see if he liked anything.  Out of almost 600 songs, he liked 2.  I thought I had pretty cool music taste.  He told me “Aunt Shonda, this is dork music”.  HAHAHAHA  Bless his heart.

** I’m on an oatmeal kick.  I have eaten oatmeal for breakfast the last several days I’ve been at work.  It seems to do the trick; it makes me full until just before lunch time, and it’s not too horribly bad for me.  (We’ll just ignore the 2 or 3 tablespoons of brown sugar I toss onto it)

** I’m through the 2nd spiral notebook of the book I am writing.  I’m writing it by hand, a la Mick Foley.  Then I will edit and type it.  It’s got an awesome working title, and even if it never goes anywhere I’m very excited to at least have something I can say I accomplished (Aside from bringing 5 ridiculously fabulous children into the world)

** Speaking of ridiculously fabulous children… Middle Boy already has a bully.  His name is Cody, and he is mean.  He even slung the F word, which I hate.  (Faggot)  I have no tolerance for that kind of verbal abuse.  I got a call from the school, in which the counselor said Middle boy was overheard saying he was going to go home and hang himself.  I guess this was at the goading of said bastard bully Cody, who has been calling him the F word, loser, idiot, asshole, for 3 days.  Then BB Cody says ‘What are you gonna do, go home and kill yourself?”  I want to drive to the school and choke him.  I say that in a totally venting matter, because heaven forbid anyone say something on a personal blog and not be able to be sarcastic in any way.  IN A TOTALLY VENTING MATTER – I want to fight this kid.  The counselor has assured me that the situation will be dealt with “First thing Monday morning” however Middle Boy is home today with the pukes.  So hopefully it is resolved first thing Tuesday.  I can’t imagine what it must feel like to Middle Boy – He’s in a new school, he’s not adapting well to the band program which was his baby in the old school, and now he’s got BB Cody picking on him.  If I hear about it again I will be making a trip to the school.  Though I must say, once the teachers/counselor were made aware of the situation it was quickly addressed.  I respect that, and really need to let them do their job before I get too overly animated about it.  Middle Boy just needed to know that it was OK to not ignore this kind of stuff.  Ignore the source, but report the situation.  Poor kid.

** Valentines Day is right around the corner, and before you ask, no I don’t have a date.  Surprised?  Hahaha  I think Sis-In-Law is going to surprise Brother with a dinner and date out of town.  So I will have a date with my nephews , sons, and niece.  I think it would be fun to do pizza, mini cheeseburgers, and chocolate dipped yummy stuff.  Like marshmallows, pretzels, strawberries, and stuff.  Plus a little power cleaning could be in order; who knows?  The last thing Sis-In-Law is going to want to do after a night of loverly debauchery is clean house.  LOL  

I think that’s enough random nonsense for today.  I’ve caught the Meme bug, and am working on a “100 Things” post which will be here later this week.  Perhaps even as soon as tonight or tomorrow.  

Until then I’ll be plugging away and plotting my next moves.

Daily Discontent 1-25-09

Published 25 January, 2009 by itsaheartache

OK, I Smell You!! –
Ladies (And Gentlemen too).  Come closer.  YOU DON’T HAVE TO BATHE IN YOUR PERFUME.  I understand the desire to smell good.  I understand wanting to have your own personal scent, and wanting to be identified by your smelling goodliness.  I like to smell good, and in fact I think I do a damn good job at it.  But come on, when your Wind Song stays on my mind 15 minutes after you’ve left my immediate area, it’s time to re-think your application process.  It’s OK to not put enough perfume on to scent an entire troupe of Vegas showgirls.  

… On a semi-icky side note; I made my way into the ladies’ room to do my business Friday morning; and couldn’t miss the unmistakable scent of flowers.  Breaking News – Someone’s poo does, in fact, smell like roses.  

Steven Adler –
My poor, addicted, mullet loving friend.  How can you think in a zillion years that what you are doing to yourself is OK?  I don’t know whether to fight you in the street, or take you home and feed you.  If any of you are not watching “Sober House” on VH1, you need to tune in immediately.  What a depressing and motivating show.  Steven is the one with the biggest addiction – went through Celebrity Rehab and was almost 1 month sober; then shows up to Sober House completely crocked out of his mind.  Then he picked fights with anyone who called him out.  Last night he was taken from the house in a police car.  Dr. Drew has done all he can for him; I’m eager to see if he actually ends up cleaning up.  But for now he makes the list, just for being a naughty bear.

Mouthy Teenagers –
Some girl cursed my niece out on Face Book.  My oldest son has to argue EVERY word that passes in his general direction.  My other son has a flippant chip on his shoulder if everything does not go perfectly his way.  And not only that; then he makes crappy comments and implies that he has it worse off than anyone in the world.  AH!  I’m so over teenagers, and I’ve only just begun.  Help me, Tom Cruise!!  Use your witchcraft powers and put the invisible fire out!

Moving –
I’m still over moving.  The move went well, and we’re all in Brother’s house and settled in.  I miss my stuff.  I miss my cats.  I miss my Domokun.  My mantra has been “This is for the best.  It will all be OK.”  And I’m sure it will be.  It’s only been a week so I’m really asking too much of myself to be totally used to it already.  

Paperwork –
I do taxes on the side.  I also had to go through the fabulous process of enrolling 3 kids in a new school.  This process came complete with about 5 sets of documents per kid, plus surveys and parent information cards.  I have neat, size-proportionate handwriting.  This changes about 4 ¾ forms into the debacle.  Lord do I dislike paperwork.

Anti Roe V Wade People –
Enough said.

History

Published 20 January, 2009 by itsaheartache

I listened to this just moments ago, lamenting over too much mustard on my sandwich.  How askew my priorities are.  Congratulations, Mr. President.

My fellow citizens:

I stand here today humbled by the task before us, grateful for the trust you have bestowed, mindful of the sacrifices borne by our ancestors. I thank President Bush for his service to our nation, as well as the generosity and co-operation he has shown throughout this transition.

Forty-four Americans have now taken the presidential oath. The words have been spoken during rising tides of prosperity and the still waters of peace. Yet, every so often the oath is taken amidst gathering clouds and raging storms. At these moments, America has carried on not simply because of the skill or vision of those in high office, but because We the People have remained faithful to the ideals of our forbearers, and true to our founding documents.

So it has been. So it must be with this generation of Americans.

That we are in the midst of crisis is now well understood. Our nation is at war, against a far-reaching network of violence and hatred. Our economy is badly weakened, a consequence of greed and irresponsibility on the part of some, but also our collective failure to make hard choices and prepare the nation for a new age. Homes have been lost; jobs shed; businesses shuttered. Our health care is too costly; our schools fail too many; and each day brings further evidence that the ways we use energy strengthen our adversaries and threaten our planet.

These are the indicators of crisis, subject to data and statistics. Less measurable but no less profound is a sapping of confidence across our land — a nagging fear that America’s decline is inevitable, and that the next generation must lower its sights.

Today I say to you that the challenges we face are real. They are serious and they are many. They will not be met easily or in a short span of time. But know this, America — they will be met.

On this day, we gather because we have chosen hope over fear, unity of purpose over conflict and discord.

On this day, we come to proclaim an end to the petty grievances and false promises, the recriminations and worn-out dogmas, that for far too long have strangled our politics.

We remain a young nation, but in the words of Scripture, the time has come to set aside childish things. The time has come to reaffirm our enduring spirit; to choose our better history; to carry forward that precious gift, that noble idea, passed on from generation to generation: the God-given promise that all are equal, all are free, and all deserve a chance to pursue their full measure of happiness.

In reaffirming the greatness of our nation, we understand that greatness is never a given. It must be earned. Our journey has never been one of shortcuts or settling for less. It has not been the path for the faint-hearted — for those who prefer leisure over work, or seek only the pleasures of riches and fame. Rather, it has been the risk-takers, the doers, the makers of things — some celebrated but more often men and women obscure in their labour, who have carried us up the long, rugged path towards prosperity and freedom.

For us, they packed up their few worldly possessions and travelled across oceans in search of a new life.

For us, they toiled in sweatshops and settled the West; endured the lash of the whip and plowed the hard earth.

For us, they fought and died, in places like Concord and Gettysburg; Normandy and Khe Sahn.

Time and again these men and women struggled and sacrificed and worked till their hands were raw so that we might live a better life. They saw America as bigger than the sum of our individual ambitions; greater than all the differences of birth or wealth or faction.

This is the journey we continue today. We remain the most prosperous, powerful nation on Earth. Our workers are no less productive than when this crisis began. Our minds are no less inventive, our goods and services no less needed than they were last week or last month or last year. Our capacity remains undiminished. But our time of standing pat, of protecting narrow interests and putting off unpleasant decisions — that time has surely passed. Starting today, we must pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and begin again the work of remaking America.

For everywhere we look, there is work to be done. The state of the economy calls for action, bold and swift, and we will act — not only to create new jobs, but to lay a new foundation for growth. We will build the roads and bridges, the electric grids and digital lines that feed our commerce and bind us together. We will restore science to its rightful place, and wield technology’s wonders to raise health care’s quality and lower its cost. We will harness the sun, and the winds and the soil to fuel our cars and run our factories. And we will transform our schools and colleges and universities to meet the demands of a new age. All this we can do. And all this we will do.

Now, there are some who question the scale of our ambitions — who suggest that our system cannot tolerate too many big plans. Their memories are short. For they have forgotten what this country has already done; what free men and women can achieve when imagination is joined to common purpose, and necessity to courage.

What the cynics fail to understand is that the ground has shifted beneath them — that the stale political arguments that have consumed us for so long no longer apply. The question we ask today is not whether our government is too big or too small, but whether it works — whether it helps families find jobs at a decent wage, care they can afford, a retirement that is dignified. Where the answer is yes, we intend to move forward. Where the answer is no, programs will end. And those of us who manage the public’s dollars will be held to account — to spend wisely, reform bad habits, and do our business in the light of day — because only then can we restore the vital trust between a people and their government.

Nor is the question before us whether the market is a force for good or ill. Its power to generate wealth and expand freedom is unmatched, but this crisis has reminded us that without a watchful eye, the market can spin out of control — and that a nation cannot prosper long when it favours only the prosperous. The success of our economy has always depended not just on the size of our gross domestic product, but on the reach of our prosperity; on our ability to extend opportunity to every willing heart — not out of charity, but because it is the surest route to our common good.

As for our common defence, we reject as false the choice between our safety and our ideals. Our Founding Fathers, faced with perils we can scarcely imagine, drafted a charter to assure the rule of law and the rights of man, a charter expanded by the blood of generations. Those ideals still light the world, and we will not give them up for expedience’s sake. And so to all other peoples and governments who are watching today, from the grandest capitals to the small village where my father was born: know that America is a friend of each nation and every man, woman and child who seeks a future of peace and dignity, and that we are ready to lead once more.

Recall that earlier generations faced down fascism and communism not just with missiles and tanks, but with sturdy alliances and enduring convictions. They understood that our power alone cannot protect us, nor does it entitle us to do as we please. Instead, they knew that our power grows through its prudent use; our security emanates from the justness of our cause, the force of our example, the tempering qualities of humility and restraint.

We are the keepers of this legacy. Guided by these principles once more, we can meet those new threats that demand even greater effort — even greater co-peration and understanding between nations. We will begin to responsibly leave Iraq to its people, and forge a hard-earned peace in Afghanistan. With old friends and former foes, we will work tirelessly to lessen the nuclear threat, and roll back the spectre of a warming planet. We will not apologize for our way of life, nor will we waver in its defence, and for those who seek to advance their aims by inducing terror and slaughtering innocents, we say to you now that our spirit is stronger and cannot be broken; you cannot outlast us, and we will defeat you.

For we know that our patchwork heritage is a strength, not a weakness. We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus — and non-believers. We are shaped by every language and culture, drawn from every end of this Earth; and because we have tasted the bitter swill of civil war and segregation, and emerged from that dark chapter stronger and more united, we cannot help but believe that the old hatreds shall someday pass; that the lines of tribe shall soon dissolve; that as the world grows smaller, our common humanity shall reveal itself; and that America must play its role in ushering in a new era of peace.

To the Muslim world, we seek a new way forward, based on mutual interest and mutual respect. To those leaders around the globe who seek to sow conflict, or blame their society’s ills on the West — know that your people will judge you on what you can build, not what you destroy. To those who cling to power through corruption and deceit and the silencing of dissent, know that you are on the wrong side of history; but that we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist.

To the people of poor nations, we pledge to work alongside you to make your farms flourish and let clean waters flow; to nourish starved bodies and feed hungry minds. And to those nations like ours that enjoy relative plenty, we say we can no longer afford indifference to suffering outside our borders; nor can we consume the world’s resources without regard to effect. For the world has changed, and we must change with it.

As we consider the road that unfolds before us, we remember with humble gratitude those brave Americans who, at this very hour, patrol far-off deserts and distant mountains. They have something to tell us today, just as the fallen heroes who lie in Arlington whisper through the ages. We honour them not only because they are guardians of our liberty, but because they embody the spirit of service; a willingness to find meaning in something greater than themselves. And yet, at this moment — a moment that will define a generation — it is precisely this spirit that must inhabit us all.

For as much as government can do and must do, it is ultimately the faith and determination of the American people upon which this nation relies. It is the kindness to take in a stranger when the levees break, the selflessness of workers who would rather cut their hours than see a friend lose their job which sees us through our darkest hours. It is the firefighter’s courage to storm a stairway filled with smoke, but also a parent’s willingness to nurture a child, that finally decides our fate.

Our challenges may be new. The instruments with which we meet them may be new. But those values upon which our success depends — hard work and honesty, courage and fair play, tolerance and curiosity, loyalty and patriotism — these things are old. These things are true. They have been the quiet force of progress throughout our history. What is demanded then is a return to these truths. What is required of us now is a new era of responsibility — a recognition, on the part of every American, that we have duties to ourselves, our nation and the world, duties that we do not grudgingly accept but rather seize gladly, firm in the knowledge that there is nothing so satisfying to the spirit, so defining of our character, than giving our all to a difficult task.

This is the price and the promise of citizenship.

This is the source of our confidence — the knowledge that God calls on us to shape an uncertain destiny.

This is the meaning of our liberty and our creed — why men, and women and children of every race and every faith can join in celebration across this magnificent mall, and why a man whose father less than sixty years ago might not have been served at a local restaurant can now stand before you to take a most sacred oath.

So let us mark this day with remembrance, of who we are and how far we have travelled. In the year of America’s birth, in the coldest of months, a small band of patriots huddled by dying campfires on the shores of an icy river. The capital was abandoned. The enemy was advancing. The snow was stained with blood. At a moment when the outcome of our revolution was most in doubt, the father of our nation ordered these words be read to the people:

“‘Let it be told to the future world … that in the depth of winter, when nothing but hope and virtue could survive … that the city and the country, alarmed at one common danger, came forth to meet [it].'”

America. In the face of our common dangers, in this winter of our hardship, let us remember these timeless words. With hope and virtue, let us brave once more the icy currents, and endure what storms may come. Let it be said by our children’s children that when we were tested, we refused to let this journey end, that we did not turn back nor did we falter; and with eyes fixed on the horizon and God’s grace upon us, we carried forth that great gift of freedom and delivered it safely to future generations.

Daily Discontent For 1-14-09

Published 14 January, 2009 by itsaheartache

Fennel Seeds.  Gross.  I warmed my Stouffer’s Lasagna Italiano for lunch today hoping to dig into some fantastic Italian goodness, only to be greeted by dozens of these horrible tidbits.  They mocked me, laughing as I tried to push them off the top of my frozen entrée.  No dice.  Not only was the whole dish ruined, but it looked like something you could find in those little metal dishes on Dr. 90210.  I don’t like fennel seeds! 

 

Being Overdrawn.  I’ll admit that I’m not too good with money.  However, it really chaps me when I forget to log something into my bank ledger and wouldn’t you know – it hits 2 days before payday and cleans me out + a $34 overdraft fee.  I now have -$53 to my name.  At least for a couple of days, until payday gets here, but then it will be gone again.  I hate, hate, hate being overdrawn.  It makes me feel like such a lame-ass.  Well, I guess it is my own fault for not managing my money better.  But hey, we’re working on that one, no?

 

Colds.  I am getting another damn cold.  This one has taken residence in the back of my throat and is moving to my chest.  It was just 2 weeks ago that I had a horrible sinus cold.  It seems to be migrating.  I have never had more colds in my life until I came to work where I do.  At least I know why everyone has hand sanitizer and Kleenex on their desks.  Open offices with 100+ people are not as fun as I would have thought they could be.  Hmph.

 

Moving.  I’ll say it again – I hate moving.  I hate carrying stuff.  I hate having to clean things 5 and 6 times before I’m totally happy with them.  I hate having to cram my crap into a tiny storage unit (OMG it’s so impossibly tiny).  I hate boxes.  I hate not knowing where anything is.  I hate deciding which of my things are important enough to warrant taking to Brother’s house and risk irritating him with the amount of crap I’m bringing.  I just hate it.  The next time I move I want it to be the last time.

 

4 words – Alberta Clipper.  Effing COLD.  Holy crap it’s cold outside.  In the big city they are assembling groups of people to seek out the homeless people and make sure they are taken somewhere warm (churches, shelters)  One of the local radio stations called it Bum Hunt ’09.  How mean, but how true.  When it’s cold enough that the weather man is discouraging being outside for any amount of time, you know you’ve got some weather.  The low last night?  Wait for it… Two below.  Now you’re in Michigan.  Once that little dash appears before the temperature, you’ve got some weather.  And I have to move in this crap!!!  Yikes!

Bikini Girl. Yes, add me to the list of bloggers complaining about this waste of cells.  I watched the season premiere of American Idol last night waiting for the usual line up of awful wanna-be singers and those few diamonds in the rough.  The girl who sang Barracuda is officially my favorite.  She wants me to spoon with her.  But the little hooker who showed up on a bikini, declared that she was going to make out with Ryan Seacrest (ICK!!!) when she got her ticket, and then sang like crap?  I hate her.  And I hate even more that she was put through.  We all know why she was put through.  She’s got a body like a battle ax.  One of the finest backsides I’ve seen in a long time.  But I digress.  Her attitude is horrible.  Her face isn’t even that cute.  She shakes her head like a bobblehad when she sings.  I can’t wait till Hollywood when they burst her bubble in a bad way.  I hope she cries.

Show Me The Way To Get Home; I’m Tired & I Wanna Go To Bed

Published 12 January, 2009 by itsaheartache

Holy Hannah, am I ever tired. I don’t even want to think about the mountains of things that still await me at home to finish. I have boxes upon boxes, and laundry upon laundry. I don’t even get home at night until after the sun has gone down. It’s going to be a long week.

Work is still busy and I still like it. I don’t have any big major gripes about anyone I work with. And even if I did, I probably wouldn’t say it here because people get fired for that kind of nonsense.

I’ve made myself a list of things to do tonight… The most hilarious thing is that I have rewritten this same list almost every night for the past week. What a bum, eh!! Procrastination is one of my finer points, unfortunately it’s coming to bite me where it hurts!!! Saturday morning is show time and I have to be totally ready.

Tomorrow morning I need to drop off the enrollment papers for the boys’ new schools and set up their tours. The boys are understandably nervous. Oldest Boy is more nervous than the other two boys; he says there is too much new going on at the same time. And he is right. I just have to keep him talking and remind him that everything will be OK; this way he doesn’t tail spin and go into another depression.

I admire their ability to just go with the flow and trust me. There are times when I don’t even trust myself, but there they are with their silent encouragement. They make me so proud.

With all the bad news regarding the economy, I wonder how long I will have to stay with Brother? I mean seriously, with the way things look I think 6 months is being very optimistic. My gut tells me that I need to start getting my name on lists for housing in Greenville but I need to be realistic. If they have something ready in 2 months, I am not going to be ready. Not even in the slightest. I guess we’ll just play it by ear and see how it goes.

I need to get my cookbooks around and get some recipes out for cooking big dinners! I will add that to my To-Do list. LOL That made me giggle. The list is ever expanding and I seem to be getting more and more tired as I think about it.

Deep breath, and repeat after me… This too shall pass.

Jen and I took the Divas to a bridal show on Saturday afternoon. The Divas enjoyed all the free cake samples, and Jen & I were annoyed by the constant influx of traffic-jammed pedestrians. There were lots of cake vendors, caterers, party buses to climb into, and DJ’s playing sample songs. The Divas and I did the Cupid Shuffle, much to the enjoyment of the DJ’s booth we were loitering in. We drew a crowd, because come on – Who can resist a chubby girl and two adorable blonde twins cutting a rug? We had to have been a sight, and we had a riot. The Divas wanted to dance to it again but some song they don’t know came on and they wouldn’t dance with me anymore. Alas, there’s always the wedding to look forward to.

Yesterday was interesting – My windshield wiper broke!!! The drive home from taking the girls home was less than fun, highway splash back from passing semis is never a fun thing, and also take into effect I couldn’t wipe the goop off!! I need to take the van to AutoZone or something and have them put a new wiper on for me. I hope it’s not too expensive! I’ll price it out and have it done on the way home tonight. We’re supposed to get some more snow and then guess what? The bottom is going to drop out. Gross.

I’m a fair-weather Michigan weather lover. I love the seasons, and I do love winter. The deep freeze this time of year is really hard for me to like, though. The high temps later this week aren’t even supposed to get out of the single digits. It’s hard to be cheerful when your face muscles are frozen in place. I guess it’s true what our moms used to say… “If you keep making that face it’s going to freeze that way”. In the right weather, I’m sure it CAN freeze that way. Thanks, mom. I don’t know how the Eskimos do it. I guess they must snuggle a lot when it gets cold like this.

OMG one more thing before I go. The girls and Jen and I went to eat Saturday before the bridal show; we went to Long John Silver’s. (Hush, I love that place) We sat down and got our food, and I gave Jen my hush puppies. I don’t like them, and Jen does. Well, the girls like them too. Natasha said “I like hush puppies, but I feel bad that the doggies have to die”. HAHAHAHA She thought they were made from dogs!!! It was the cutest thing in the world. Yes, I did tell her they are made of bread and some other stuff I don’t know.  But no doggies.  She is too cute.

With that I shall leave you for a few days, until I get some time to write again.

Remember to breathe. And be thankful for the small stuff.