Tuesday, December 18, 2007
My initial plans were, I would drive to California to visit with my brothers for the holiday this year. It's been a long time since I've been home to California. But, I wasn't sure if Sadie was pregnant, if she was, we'd stay home.
Well, now we know, Sadie was pregnant and has had her beautiful puppies. I am not going anywhere now. And that's okay. The puppies are just now opening their little eyes, they're so cute! I need to get new photos to post.
My parents had also changed their minds about going to California. My dad is not too keen on the the idea of driving through the Sierra's with a trailer in tow, through the snow. So, my brothers are on their own in California for Christmas this year. My daughter too, had planned to drive up from Los Angeles to my brothers' town, to meet with all of us. She will be staying in L.A.
Anyway, now I'm off work and staying home. Well, my boss emailed me this a.m. I guess he's had issues with a couple of my staff members. So, I ended up at work all afternoon today anyway. My boss and I met with one of my employees. It's the part of my job that I could do without, letting an employee know they are not meeting standards. This task is just one step above letting an employee go. Just hard things to do. Sometimes, it is necessary though.
So, I met with this employee. She defended herself and blamed others for her poor performance. In the end, she seemed to understand we want her to do her best, try to change the things that are keeping her from getting her work done. If she still felt miserable, we challenged her to find other employment. One of her complaints was with another employee that I personally have had many unnecessary dealings with.
This particular second mentioned employee, comes up smelling like a rose, every single time there's an issue. Anyway, I suggested that before I go home today, I would pull the four employees together (yes, there were two more involved in this issue today) to get their issues aired and hopefully, resolved. This ended up another hour and half long. Tears streamed, feelings were aired, apologies made, hugs given, and a promise to move on from today, leaving the past in the past. I will be gone for the next week, and I'm hoping this will give everyone a chance to cool down. Can I just say, STRESS!
To top things off tonight, I felt like I had a touch of food poisoning. Fever, chills, upset stomach.
Aww, but a couple of good things... One good thing, my guy left a huge Christmas present, all wrapped pretty, on the kitchen table for me before he left on his run to California. He won't be back until late Saturday night. I don't have a clue what he got me for Christmas. I want to peek, but I want to be surprised more than I want to peek.
The other good thing... when I got to work, there was a brand new crock-pot on my desk! See, yesterday I brought my famous breakfast burritos. Another employee broke the lid to my old crock-pot, given to me as a wedding gift in 1978! The lid shattered slivers of glass all over the office. It really was incredible how this lid shattered so. Anyway, this employee felt she needed to replace the crock-pot. I told her just find me a lid. Well, I guess she couldn't find just a lid, and now I have a brand new crock-pot! I thanked the employee. She felt bad, but it was just an accident.
I don't have a Christmas tree up yet. I'm still thinking I will get this done. I've got all my gifts, just need to finish wrapping. My daughter loves her GPS device I gave her at Thanksgiving when she surprised us by driving up here, arriving just in time for Turkey dinner! I did send off a package to her with little odds and ends I've been collecting for her all year. I even put together a stocking filled with fruit and candy and little things.
So, this was day one of my Christmas vacation.
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
Saturday, December 08, 2007
I do not know much about the service, other than even the National Guard is going to Iraq. Something I am NOT happy about. But, my son has told me some of what he's doing and why he is doing this. And also I've found information online. The more I find out, the better I feel about his decision, and I have to remember - it is HIS decision - whether I like it or not.
The program he enlisted with is a School First program offering 24 months of college before any active duty. He did enlist for eight years. That's a LONG time in something if you find you're not happy! Again, this is his decision. I do hope he has great experiences and finds opportunies that brighten his future, which will make him very happy. So, he enlisted November 26, 2007 - he'll be out in November, 2015. Oh, that sounds so long from now.
I've talked with my son, my parents have talked with him, his girlfriend's parents have talked with him, all trying to give him as much support as we can and help him make this life changing decision. There are some awesome opportunities for him through the Army Nat'l Guard and as soon as I step back from being a mom full of worry, and see those opportunities he has, I think I'm good with his decision.
What I've found good about all this is, I do believe it will be good for him. Maybe he'll find a little appreciation for home and his mom. Angry teenagers seem to turn on those who love them most, he is no different.
Today, he started his once a month weekend with the Guard. In March, he'll go to basic training in Oklahoma, then transfer to Missouri for advance training, graduating in late July. From there, he'll be back home for 24 months and attending Boise State University, starting as a Sophomore.
Pvt JMM phoned late last night to let me know he was staying over at his girlfriend's for the night. He would leave early and get to Gowen Field about 6:15 a.m. I reminded him it was snowing and the roads would most likely be icy in the morning, to be very careful on his drive. He said he'd go slow. I wanted so badly to give him a hug and was sad that I didn't see him before he left. (I'm being such a BOOB! He's only gone until tomorrow afternoon.) I told him, "Good luck, tomorrow!" and that I loved him.
This morning I woke up at 7 a.m. to find an inch of snow on the ground. The house is empty, just me and the dogs. It's my son's girlfriend's, LJ, 17th birthday today. Her family is having a weekend full of parties for her. Pvt JMM is missing those. I had a gift for LJ. She stopped by after school yesterday to see me. She and Pvt JMM left after just a few minutes to start her birthday celebration with her friends.
Monday, December 03, 2007
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
Thanksgiving started off a bit rocky, between my guy and my mom... I'm not sure how I manage sometimes. Family drama...
Thanksgiving dinner was wonderful. My brother and his family, five of them in all, had drove in from California the day before. My parents' neighbor and her family joined us, three of them. My son and his girlfriend were there too. With my parents and I, there was a good group of us.
As we all settled into our seats at the table for dinner, prayers were said and then the doorbell rang! My mom wondered who that could be, as we were all there. Someone guessed it was my 4 year old nephew. Nope, he was right there at the table.
My dad gets up as the doorbell rings and rings... and in came my daughter!!! Oh my gosh! Seeing her, I couldn't hold back the tears of happiness. My daughter and I had tried and tried to find a flight she could afford, to get her home for the holiday, without success. Next year, we thought, we would do better in planning her trip home. And, here she was!!!
She had asked for Wednesday off work, got her car in for a check-up and oil change, and drove from Los Angeles to Reno, spending the night at her boyfriend's family's home in Reno that night. She was up early Thanksgiving day and drove the eight hour drive from Reno to Boise, making it just in time for dinner! Oh, it was so good to see her!
Friday, I spent the day with my guy and his son and his son's girlfriend. This town is out of turkey of any kind, the day after Thanksgiving... we learned the hard way. We finally found a breast of turkey, marinated in lemon garlic. It was actually pretty darn good. As was the rest of our little feast.
It's a girl! Earlier this week, we learned we are going to be grandparents! My guy's son is going to be a daddy in January. They are both very young and struggling with their relationship and the fact that they are going to be parents. We want to be supportive of them both, and hope to be part of this baby's life. Our wishes were made known. The mom has only met us twice now. We enjoyed seeing them, having dinner with them, and visiting.
Saturday, my daughter and I spent the whole day together, alone. She kept saying she wanted to spend the day with her mom! From not wanting to see me at all, a couple of years ago, to this... I was really tickled, and enjoyed every moment.
My guy suggested I give my daughter her Christmas present early, she could really use it... a Garmin GPS. See, when I visited my daughter in Venice, California, earlier this year, she complained about how lost she gets, all the time. It was so frustrating for her, and sometimes even scary, ending up in the wrong place. I thought then, I will get this for her for Christmas.
My guy was right, she loved it! We took it out and drove around Boise, Eagle and Meridian, learning how to use the GPS. I drove, she played. We looked up a Starbucks we had never been to before, and followed the directions, and wha-la! There we were! Sounds silly, but seriously, this is going to be so good for my little girl in big ol' Los Angeles, California!
Early Sunday morning, my brother and his family, and my daughter, all left for California. The weather was cold, but dry, thank goodness. I always worry about icy roads this time of year. My niece, a senior in high school this year, shared the driving with my daughter from Idaho to Reno. They followed my brother. At Reno, my daughter had to turn south for Los Angeles, my brother and his family kept west for the central coast of California.
My guy and I spent the day together. We went to the movies and saw Beowulf in 3D. I really do not care for these types of movies and had a hard time staying awake. The special glasses we needed to wear were dirty, even though they were supposed to be washed. I went to trade them during the running of previews only to be handed a towel to wipe them off with. Hmm... wonder if they ever were washed. I ended up taking the glasses off a couple of different times. Anyway... my guy enjoyed the movie, and I got to snuggle up and keep warm with him for a couple of hours.
Later that night, I received a text message from my son saying he would not be coming home Sunday night. He wouldn't answer my text replies or my phone calls after that. I am starting to get used to this practice of his, and figured he was spending the night at his girlfriend's home, as her parents continue to allow this. I had made plans earlier to meet his girlfriend Monday, after school, for coffee.
Monday, my guy left to finish his run, driving to Pendleton, Oregon, and back. He would be home in time for dinner. I spent the day cleaning house, then met my son's girlfriend for coffee. LJ told me my son had signed papers with the Army National Guard. I couldn't believe it. He promised to see other recruiters before deciding on which branch of the service he was going with. And, I really hoped he would change his mind about signing up at all.
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
Sunday, November 18, 2007
((be sure to hit your ESC button to stop my background music before you start the video))
“The Mom Song”
Get up now Get up now Get up out of bed
Wash your face
Brush your teeth
Comb your sleepyhead
Here’s your clothes and your shoes
Hear the words I said
Get up now! Get up and make your bed
Are you hot? Are you cold?
Are you wearing that?
Where’s your books and your lunch and your homework at?
Grab your coat and gloves and your scarf and hat
Don’t forget! You gotta feed the cat
Eat your breakfast, the experts tell us it’s the most important meal of all
Take your vitamins so you will grow up one day to be big and tall
Please remember the orthodontist will be seeing you at 3 today
Don’t forget your piano lesson is this afternoon so you must play
The bus is here
Come back here
Did you wash behind your ears?
Play outside, don’t play rough, will you just play fair?
Be polite, make a friend, don’t forget to share
Work it out, wait your turn, never take a dare
Get along! Don’t make me come down there
Clean your room, fold your clothes, put your stuff away
Make your bed, do it now, do we have all day?
Were you born in a barn? Would you like some hay?
Can you even hear a word I say?
Answer the phone! Get off the phone!
Don’t sit so close, turn it down, no texting at the table
No more computer time tonight!
Your iPod’s my iPod if you don’t listen up
Where are you going and with whom and what time do you think you’re coming home?
Saying thank you, please, excuse me makes you welcome everywhere you roam
You’ll appreciate my wisdom someday when you’re older and you’re grown
Can’t wait till you have a couple little children of your own
You’ll thank me for the counsel I gave you so willingly
But right now I thank you not to roll your eyes at me
Close your mouth when you chew, would appreciate
Take a bite maybe two of the stuff you hate
Use your fork, do not burp or I’ll set you straight
Eat the food I put upon your plate
Get an A, get the door, don’t get smart with me
Get a grip, get in here, I’ll count to three
Get a job, get a life, get a PHD
Get a dose of,
“I don’t care who started it!
You’re grounded until you’re 36″
Get your story straight and tell the truth for once, for heaven’s sake
And if all your friends jumped off a cliff would you jump, too?
If I’ve said it once, I’ve said at least a thousand times before
That you’re too old to act this way
It must be your father’s DNA
Look at me when I am talking
Stand up straighter when you walk
A place for everything and everything must be in place
Stop crying or I’ll give you something real to cry about
Brush your teeth, wash your face, put your PJs on
Get in bed, get a help, say a prayer with mom
Don’t forget, I love you
And tomorrow we will do this all again because a mom’s work never ends
You don’t need the reason why
Because, because, because, because
I said so, I said so, I said so, I said so
I’m the mom, the mom, the mom, the mom, the mom!!
Thank you for sharing, Shayna!
Friday, November 16, 2007
The following is a copy of the front page of the Idaho Tribune Daily News, copied and pasted here...
Caldwell woman wins lottery for fifth time
Anna Pearl Rowell of Caldwell is one of the luckiest Idaho Lottery winners of all time.
Today, Anna Pearl Rowell claimed her $110,000 winning Wild Card check from the Idaho Lottery and then retired from her service as the office manager for the Canyon County Assessor’s Office. It's her fifth lottery win.
Rowell became the third Wild Card jackpot winner from Idaho in the last four months when she matched all of her numbers and the Wild Card from the draw held on Nov. 3. Those winning numbers were 16, 17, 18, 24, 26 and the Wild Card was the Ace of Spades.
She bought the winning ticket at Jacksons Food Store located at 2406 S. Montana Ave.in Caldwell so that she could enter the “Second Chance to Paradise” promotion to see Boise State play Hawaii over Thanksgiving.
“It’s a pretty great feeling when all your numbers start to match up,” Rowell said today. “I read the numbers in the paper on Sunday morning and couldn’t believe it. I started reading the numbers and looking at my ticket and then said, ‘Oh my god! Oh my god! Oh my god!’ My husband thought the dog had been run over.”
And while this was the third Wild Card jackpot winner out of the last five for Idaho, this was Rowell’s fifth big Lottery win.
• In October 2002, Rowell won a Dodge Ram Quad-cab pick-up truck through the Lottery’s “Bucks and Trucks” second chance scratch game promotion.
• In July 2004, Rowell hit lottery luck again when she won $15,000 playing as a contestant in the Lottery’s 15th Anniversary Game Show.
• Earlier in 2004 she won $1,500 on the 15th Anniversary scratch ticket.
• In 2005 she won a Pac-Man video arcade through another second chance draw.
When asked the secret to her lucky success, Rowell offered, “Well, I tell my husband he’s really lucky to have me.”
Rowell, a longtime employee of Canyon County, had planned to retire today before hitting it big. Her win just happened to be a coincidence.
“This is great because now I’ll be able to pay off my house,” she said.
Friday, November 09, 2007
Thank you, Psychfun, for mentioning that not everyone goes to college, and of those who don't, many do just fine. I do believe one must want to go to college to do well, and if being there only to satisfy a parent's wishes, they probably are not going to do as well. At best, it would be a major struggle to survive the classes.
My guy mentioned to me the other night while I was in the middle of my own chaos, my son's girlfriend is her parents' responsibility and there's nothing more I can do there. It was a moment of, "Ohhh, you're right..." when I heard that. So, I am seeing things a little different today. I am a bit more settled within.
In the end, in all of life's ups and downs, things do seem to work out. And, when mama's happy, everyone's happy.
Thursday, November 08, 2007
I have befriended my son's girlfriend, and seriously, she really is a nice girl. She seems to like being around me. My son, though, wants to be away from home, away from me. There are times I will spend with just her. We've gone to summer festivals and shopping together.
I know it's time, my son needs to move out, start his own life, so I can keep my life sane. And, I'm sure as soon as he's able, he will move out. That's not a problem with me. Of course, I'm wishing he would stay at home and go to college, but I also know, he's got to do what he feels is right for him. At this point in his life, I can give advice, advice he can take or leave... I know this.
He's talked about marrying this girl. He's also talked about joining the service. And yes, I've tried to talk with him about both of these ideas. He's 18 and can do what he wants, it's none of my business.
Sometimes I sit here, all alone in this house, and wonder... wonder what the heck I did to have ended up all alone! I never, ever imagined I would be my age and alone in life, ever! I hate being alone, but do not expect my kids to fullfill this void in my life.
I admit, I'm not ready to be alone, but... I am okay with my son moving out. There's just too many differences, too many "...it's none of your business, mom..." I still believe, as long as he lives here, the things I do ask about are my business, whether he likes it or not.
Well... He doesn't pay rent, he's not working. He's known that if he wasn't in school fulltime come September 2007, he would need to pay rent. I don't think he won't pay, he just doesn't have a job right now. He is going to interviews, so hopefully he find something soon. Again, I'd rather he went to college full time and stayed home rent free. It's really not about the money, it's more about education, responsibilities and respect.
Wednesday, November 07, 2007
My eighteen year old son still lives at home, and is very involved with his girlfriend and her family. The girlfriend is almost seventeen. And honestly, I am okay with the two of them, their young and in love. She's a nice girl, I like her.
What's got my blood boiling is her parents allow him to stay the night... even on a school night! I am just going crazy over this! It's not just one time, it's all the time!
He's 18, and legally, I am not responsible for him, but... It's just not RIGHT in my book. And, she's just 16, will be 17 in December. Her parents are much more liberal than I must be, and I thought I was pretty liberal.
OMG! I cannot believe how upset I am over this, it's just not right, and there's nothing I can do about it. She's NOT my daughter, and he's 18 and "can do whatever he wants!" Whatever happened to that "...as long as you live under my roof..." saying?
Sunday, September 23, 2007
The Perrine Bridge over the Snake River at Twin Falls, Idaho.
Yesterday, I drove to Twin Falls to meet up with my guy and his family. It's a two hour drive from home through the high desert. The Interstate follows the Snake River for most of the 130 mile trip. As I got into town, the sun was starting to set, yet still high above the horizon. I pulled over at the Perrine Bridge outlook to take some photos.
My guy had driven from southern California with a load that delivers in Twin Falls on Monday. I was excited to meet him there Saturday afternoon. We spent the night with his mom, and I left for home Sunday afternoon.
We had a nice visit with my guy's mom and his aunt and uncle. His aunt and uncle are leaving in a couple of weeks for Arizona to spend the winter months in warmer weather, and my guy wanted to see them before they left.
Other things on my mind... Today, September 23rd, is my mom's birthday. She is in southern Arizona, just about at the Mexican border, to help her sister-in-law. My mom's youngest brother is dying from complications of brain cancer. He was taken off life support Friday and brought home to be cared for there. He is not expected to live.
Growing up, I wasn't around this uncle and his immediate family, so I was not close with him. I never really knew him. Still, my thoughts and prayers go out to him. Also, to my parents who have driven the two day trip, from here to there, to be with him and his wife, at the time of his passing. I know my aunt could use the support of family right now... being there for the living, they are who need us most at times like these.
Saturday, September 22, 2007
Today, they have a ton of kids in their yard, and balloons are everywhere. I put the dogs in so they wouldn't be barking through the fence at them, to be neighborly. I've not met these people, their house is actually on another cul-de-sac behind my house.
Their back patio is all decorated up, and I can see their dining room to decorated the same. Seeing this, brought back many memories of all the birthday parties I used to throw for my kids when they were young. Birthdays have always been a special time at my house, for the young and old alike.
Now that my kids are older, they aren't into the big party thing... Oh, there's been other reasons too. Family has drifted apart over the years. My daugher now lives in Los Angeles, far, far away. I used to throw casual dinner parties all the time. Friends and family were always here at my home... well, I guess that would be "there," in California. I haven't had but a few dinners at my house, here in Idaho. I sure enjoyed having those dinners. Hmm... maybe I best be getting those together again.
Thursday, September 20, 2007
create your own visited states map
or check out these Google Hacks.
This little map of visited states was found on Becky's blog. I found this to be interesting... I love traveling, as I believe most people do. I was actually surprised at how much RED was on this map! Still have a few states to see...
Updated: Sept 22, 2007
I was born and raised in California, and my grandparents always lived in Idaho while I grew up. So, I had been to most of the western states, many times with my family on summer camping trips. Oregon, Washington, Nevada, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming and Arizona, have many memories of family trips where my grandparents joined us.
I have been to Texas and New Mexico on my own, for work related travel. Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, and Ohio were all part of a trip I took to see a NASCAR Brickyard 400 race in 1997, before my trucking across America trip.
Most of you know, my guy is a trucker. I have been able to take a couple of long vacations to ride with him across our beautiful country. This is how I saw most of these states, as a drive by. Like in Missouri, I would have loved to have spent an hour or so at the Arch in St Louis. Instead, I took as many photos of the Arch as I could, as we drove by at 55 mph.
Interstate 90 and Interstate 80, neither run through South Dakota, lol, were our main routes, most the time. Almost always in trucking, you never really know where you'll head to next, when you're driving for a company that runs all lower 48 states. So, it was a total adventure for me, to see the sites we could along our way.
My first long truck outing with my guy was in 1999. I was out on the road with him for nearly four weeks during that trip. We drove through 25 states, stopping when we could to see the sites. This was one of my most memorable things I've ever done, I had a blast. Seeing so much of America, seeing how beautiful, and diverse, our country is.
Our dispatcher knew I hadn't been east of the western states so she found loads that took us clear across the country. A couple of highlights of this trip were, NYC for three days... we parked out on Long Island at a park-n-ride, rented a little car, and spent a wonderful time in NYC. Another highlight, was the south... it is so pretty in the south. I was awe struck through Arkansas, Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, South Carolina. Gorgeous down there! I was very interested in Pennsylvania, both my mom and grandfather were born there. We took a little, two lane back highway, up through Pennsylvania, seeing Omish communities in the raw. This is a trip I will never forget.
Friday, September 07, 2007
For an extra special treat for me, my daughter met me at the airport in Ontario! We had breakfast together, talking over french toast and coffee for a couple of hours. It was so good to see her. When it was time for her to go - she had a pre-scheduled appointment she could not change - she dropped me off at the truck stop where we met up with my guy. There was a pleasant exchange of "hello's" between the two of them before my daughter had to leave. This was the first time in years the two of them have seen each other.
That afternoon, we drove over to the California Speedway, in Fontana, a few miles from the truck stop, to watch the Nextel and Busch Cup time trials. It was amazingly HOT! Too hot! With a major thunder storm just over the mountains to the north of us, the air was thick on top of 110 degree heat. It was incredible, it was miserable!
We parked a mile or two from the track, in the RV Parking lot. My photos do not do the parking lot scene justice. It was pretty cool to come upon the sea of flags sporting the number of the RV'er's favorite driver's car. Most every RV had a flag flying. We road the shuttle to the speedway.
Once inside the speedway, it became apparent just how big the facility was. I think the track is 2.5 miles long, with 14% grades in a couple of the turns. The back stretch is straight, the front stretch is arched.
Here's a few photos of our day...
We stayed in the heat and watched all the Busch race time trials. Denny Hamlin took the pole for first place in the next day's Busch race. I didn't know drivers could race in both races, Busch and Nextel.
After being in the heat and walking around the speedway forever, we decided to get a hotel room to cool off. We called around and found the Airport Marriott running a special, and got a room. Ahhh!!! A shower and wonderful room! Quiet, clean, plush, full service deli, full service restaurant, and full service bar & grill, and of course, full size pool in the center courtyard. We spent a refreshing night, ordered a pizza from the hotel deli that was absolutely the best pizza we've had in a long time! So, if you find yourself in the Ontario, CA, area and needing a room, I'd refer you to this hotel.
The next morning we headed for Idaho. We had thought to stay another day and see the Busch race, but it was miserable hot and there was no way we would be able to stay out in that heat. We drove up the eastern side of California, going through the miles of desert and the Eastern Sierras. As we drove along, I found these trees very interesting, I think they're Yucca trees. At first I was sure they were Joshua trees, but once I was home and looking at the photos, I'm thinking they're Yuccas.We were in and out of thunder storms most of the day. The desert can be so pretty. Most of the time, I prefer a forest over a desert, but do find the beauty in both. We were able to listen to the Busch race, live on SIRIUS radio. It was pretty cool to know we were just there, saw the track, and heard the cars roar during their time trials. Seems the Busch race was pretty intense, those boys really got some race drivin' in.
We spent our next night in Hawthorne, Nevada. We woke up early and were on our way again. We listened to the Nextel Cup race, and again, what a race. Those drivers were fighting 130 to 140 degree temps in their race cars. It was over 105 on the track. Reporters tried to interview Dale Jr, he was so hot he couldn't even stop to talk with them. I think they need to do early spring races at Fontana, not in the middle of summer like this... it's just too hot! We topped the Treasure Valley before sunset. It's always good to be home.
I had a nice visit with my daughter... precious time with her I normally do not have. And, I had a wonderful time with my guy for a couple of days while driving back to Idaho from Southern California.
Sunday, August 26, 2007
Sunday, August 19, 2007
Saturday, August 18, 2007
Monday, August 06, 2007
Wednesday, July 25, 2007
***Please scroll down to see my California trip... May 23rd! I finally got it posted, and I don't want you to miss it.