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Time moves on

Long time no blog, huh? I’ve been a bit busy. I got back from China! That was huge. I gained a wonderful little being. That was humongous. Now my nest is getting ready to be scattered, again. Drats, that college!

China was busy. And scary. I’d say 1% spoke broken English. That is if you could find her/him. We were on our own most of the time (2 weeks). Which made eating almost impossible. Menus were mostly in Chinese, and we are not the gambling type, seeing that chicken feet were a favorite by many and squid flavored potato chips were at every convenience store. My husband lost 10 pounds and I lost about 6. I lived on Coke and the doughnut and fried egg they gave me each morning. Oh, and Coke at lunch and dinner. Hence only the 6 pounds lost. You are told NOT to drink the water. Brush your teeth with bottled water and not to eat the vegetables. Hmmm….that left watermelon and rice with noodles. I don’t want to see another speck of rice for quite some time.

Our newest family member is amazing. Upon our first meeting, she clung to me and hasn’t changed her mind that I’ll do as her new momma. What a brave little girl. She left all she knows, a language she understood, all-you-can eat rice and noodles, and came to America with a strange woman and her husband to try her tastebuds on mashed potatoes and applesauce. Both of which she despises. Sigh. So I make her rice and noodles anytime she wants. She truly inspires me with how quickly she is adapting. ūüôā

My two…yes, two boys leave for college next week. *sniff, sniff* I know they need to go, need to spread their wings. However, I’ll be left to look at their empty rooms and remember all the nonsense and shenanigans they pulled during our time together. Stop me now!! I don’t think I can go and make the exit scene at the dorm rooms, again. I might be busy that day they have to go. LOL

On a more exciting topic…I am about to release my next book. I. AM. So. Excited!! I just read the latest review for it. I get such a high off of reading what someone thinks of my books. Provided they are justifiable. I can’t say too much for the trolls out there. Everybody has a pooper, right? Anyway, so my next book comes out August 23rd! Eep. It’s a summer fling-type one. I got it in right under the ‘summer’ wire. I do hope everyone who reads it likes it. As with all my books, I fall in love with each of the characters. It’s so difficult to choose which I like best.

Well, I’m off to get that last minute school shopping done. Everyone has that one kid, right? The one that constantly reminds me they have nothing on their supply list and school starts Monday. Yeah, yeah. I have three days, don’t I? Oh, how I hate the supply aisles at Wal-Mart and Target. It’s worse than a BOGO at the shoe store. People grabbing glue sticks like Elmer’s is going on strike. And binders that cost a fraction of my car payment lining the shelves. Come on! It’s a binder, people. Three rings. Why is it like ten bucks? And why does every teacher in the free world need two for their class? Don’t get me started on backpacks. Yes, my oldest son has reminded me that he’s had the same one for the past five years. What can I say? That thing has kept its shape and still zips. Well, kind of. I’ll get him a new one. But have you seen the prices? Forty dollars? And that’s a cheap one. Seriously? Times that by like six. It takes a bite out of the old wallet.

Enough of my school supply rant. I mean, is my kid really going to blow their nose through three boxes of tissues? And use 200 Clorox wipes? I think not. Anyway, happy back to school! Let the good times roll for all the moms who can drop their kids and go back home and take it easy. Your summer of ‘Mom, I’m bored’ has officially come to another close.

Cheers!

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I smell school in the air

Don’t get me wrong, I love summer. I love the warm weather, the fact I don’t have an alarm clock attached to a tardy bell, no packing lunches, and no homework. That’s right, just because you don’t have to turn it in, you have to make sure your child does it, does it right, and it’s in the backpack the night before. Shew, and I thought those days were behind me. Anyway, there are some things the summer brings that I could do without, though. The “I’m bored” every ten minutes, “what can I eat now?” (even though they ate fifteen minutes ago), “are we going anywhere today? maybe a movie, the mall, anywhere?” Ah yes, the idle hands of time. This I don’t like so much. I’ve been extremely fortunate in the past with a mother-in-law whom we fondly refer to as camp. She is awesome–orchestrates scavenger hunts, themed menus for the week, outdoor games, milkshake days, and trips to the stores. This year, however, she’s become the caregiver for her mother. My children are limited with their time at her house. Heck, she’s limited at the time at her house. She lives with her mom throughout the week and returns to her own on the weekends. So it’s been somewhat of a bummer summer. And I get it, kids don’t have the same things that need to be done as a parent. We’ve taught another one how to cut the grass (a five hour chore on a riding contraption), I’ve assigned another one dish duty every morning, and the two smaller ones hang out, making sure their dirty clothes get in the basket and out from under their beds. But how long can this entertain? Approximately eight minutes. Then there’s the rest of the day to consider. And flopping schedules with your husband so one of you can remain gainfully employed.

Alas, summer is coming to a screeching halt. I smell the paper and wooden pencils as I walk into Target, see the back-to-school advertisements when the television is switched on, and pass all the parked buses, begging for newbies to join the ranks in transporting the crazies to the school back and forth. It’s time to get hunkered down to waking up early, praying we have bread, and wondering what I can make for dinner. (for those weeks I don’t have it magically planned out ahead of time). It’s better this way. The kids are all in places that’s making them think, they’re finally out of the house, and I can get into a schedule. It’s both liberating and frightening to think about. I’m not fond of schedules, but it’s necessary.

I took my two littlest to see Despicable Me 3 yesterday. Yeah, it was as good as you can imagine a rental to be, sitting in a theater that just charged us over $20 for the tickets, $30 for snacks, and a kid kicking my chair and talking the entire show. But I do it out of love. Although I must say, my kiddos didn’t seem particularly thrilled with it. Kind of like they were thinking it was a DVD rental at the Redbox, too. Once you go into the second and third editions of movies, it’s a rental for sure.

But it was nice to get everyone to pitch in and clean the house with me in order to go to the movies! My daughter and husband got to see Spiderman. They raved over it. Ironically I’ll see that in the Redbox. Times are changing, as my second in birth order son skulked to the back of the theater with his girlfriend, and my oldest met up with someone and watched Dunkirk.

Well, that’s all for now. It’s Sunday and the weather is a perfect 70 degrees. I’m going to soak up the last day before Monday begins. We have a dentist appointment and our first home study scheduled for this week. And, I might be doing a little bit of school supply shopping. Open house for my smallest is in 10 days. I can only imagine the teacher is going to demand 20 sticks of glue, 10 notebooks, and 15 boxes of tissues!

Have a great one, everyone!

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Back to School and Other Stuff

back to schoolI’ve been busy lately, going and re-going to the stores for school supplies. How many hand sanitizers does one really need in a classroom? It’s not even healthy to keep pumping alcohol onto kids hands, is it? I mean, just send them over to the little sink and have them wash with soap and water. But, anyway. I’m not completely hip on the whole mammoth-sized amounts¬†of supplies you have to cart into the classroom on the first day, anyway. And, all the notebooks? I don’t have to tell you that buying for five children¬†can get pretty pricey.

I’ve been doing other things lately, too. I’m happy to report I received my first¬†round of edits for WAKING AMY. Did I¬†mention that in my last post? I hope not. Nothing like duplicate information overload. Anyway,¬†I’ve been busy working on them. It’s surreal getting back my manuscript with all the red markings. Well, not that many red markings. Some…very little, in fact:) I’m beginning to see that I use commas a little too freely. Like everywhere I pause breathing. I thought that was the right way. Turns out, I was wrong. So, there’s a lot of taking out of the little cute curls I like to add too much. See, I just did it again!

Back to going¬†back to school. Only a few of my children are ready. The girl to be¬†more specific. Of course the girl is ready. Aren’t all girls? My girl in particular is¬†Extremely organized. I’m not sure how¬†she endured summer at all. I mean there was nothing to organize.¬†No homework, no quizzes to study for… So now¬†she’s happy. Already planned her first outfit for the first day.

The school¬†thought my fourth child had moved and didn’t have him on any roster or in the system.¬†Really? Like he’s the only one of the family that moved? So they¬†quickly pecked something on the computer and presto! Here is your teachers for math, science, and reading.¬†I hope¬†it was tied into some type of learning analysis and not just the teacher with the least amount of students.

I suppose I’ll get back to my¬†edits. Then I’ll go back to the store tomorrow for¬†some more baggies, pens, and 20 more packs of paper. Oh, and five more boxes of tissues I’ll never know if was necessary.¬†You’d think they were going abroad for study…in a¬†hut…without running water…with desperate needs of ziplocks¬†(gallon-sized¬†if you’re a boy)¬†and tons of pronged folders, and sets of headphones with USB sticks.

It’s not like they’ll run out of lead in the first semester and¬†the¬†supply stores will all shut down. Five packs of pencils for each child? Let’s¬†take this year¬†two notebooks at a time. Can we?