Thursday, March 14, 2013

A Freezer Full Of Love

I was standing there doing the dishes this morning, reminiscing about my childhood, and next thing I know I have tears rolling down my face.  Not tears of sadness.  Happy tears.  Lucky tears.  You see, I didn't have a lot of family that I was really close with.  Most of them I only saw on holidays, or special occasions.  My grandmother, who was amazing passed away when I was very young, and so did my great grandmother.  I was however lucky enough to have one aunt and uncle who meant (still do) the world to me.

When you're a kid, it's important to have people other than your parents who you can depend on.  You don't always like your parents, so having an extra set around is nice when you need to vent, or just get away.  My extra set was my Uncle Mike, and Aunt Chris.  I spent many weekends with them, and my cousins.  Got caught stealing, and smoking with my oldest cousin at their house.  We got in some deep shit over that one.  We spent every holiday over there, after all the grandparents had passed.  I tell you what, NOBODY can cook like my Auntie Chris.  NOBODY.  The food and the laughter is what I remember the most.  We were always laughing.  Non-stop laughing.  Laughing and making fun of each other.  Isn't that what family is for?  If you can't make fun of your family, who can you make fun of? 

They made my life easier.  They made me feel loved, and they made me feel special.  I'll never forget the worst summer of my childhood.  I was 14.  It was the year my parents decided to move me out of the state, and away from all my friends.  I lived in a small town, and had gone to school with my friends since kindergarten, and they were moving me 30 minutes away.  When you're a kid 30 minutes is far, especially when you don't have a drivers licence.  I was pretty upset.  My aunt and uncle offered me a place to live.  They told me if I didn't want to move, I could always come stay with them.  When my uncle signed my 8th grade graduation autograph book it said "You will always have an open bed waiting for you here, if you need it".  I used to pull that out when I was a PMSing teen, and cry cry cry, because I knew I was lucky to have people like them in my life.  That's a great feeling when you're a kid.  I just knew there would always be someone there that I could count on, no matter what. 

As I got older, and got my licence, I still spent many weekends at their house.  One summer we went to Great America almost every weekend.  Then I'd go out and get into trouble with my cousins.  My aunt and uncle called me at least once a week to check on me, and just to chat.  My Uncle Mike is the one who made me realize I had finally met the man I was going to marry.  We were all having dinner together and I got up, and made my future husband a plate of food.  My uncle's jaw about hit the floor.  His exact words were "If Jesus Christ himself walked into this house and asked you to make him a plate, you'd tell him his f*cking arms aren't broken, and to get it himself!  I think you've found the one you're going to marry.".  He was right.

After our wedding, me and the hubs struggled a lot, like new couples often do.  We were broke, trying to figure out how to live with each others bad habits, and getting used to the married life.  My aunt and uncle made that first year easier on us.  They would come by every week or two and fill our freezer with meat.  Pounds of ground, big fat ass pork chops, and even some steaks.  We never had to worry about what we were going to eat.  They made sure of that.  We were broke as shit, but we had meat dammit.  Lots and lots of meat.

I could go on and on about all the great things they've done for me.  I could tell you about the food my aunt made for my wedding shower, and all the dishes they bought me, and how they made sure to upgrade and buy a better crib mattress for my kid, because she didn't want him sleeping on a crappy mattress.  I could go on and on, but I think you get the picture.  They are amazing, and I am lucky to have them.  I don't think I'll ever be able to repay them for all the kind things that they did for me.  They didn't have do any of it.  They weren't my parents.  They were my aunt an uncle.  There is no rule that says you have to love your nieces and nephews, and that you have to be there whenever they need you.  They just did it, and I'll forever be grateful for them. 

I didn't write this blog so I could brag about my aunt and uncle.  I wrote it because I believe every kid should have at least one aunt and uncle like this.  Someone who is always there to talk, and always there to make your life a little easier, and a lot more fun.  Even if distance prevents it, at least be an ear for your nieces and nephews.  Call them, send them a card, and let them know they can count on you and that they are loved.  I still have that autograph book, and I still pull it out and tear up when I see my uncle's handwriting, telling me that I will always have a place to stay.  Having a relative that's always there, is almost as important as having a great set of parents.  Lets face it, life can be full of suckage sometimes.  A freezer full of love can make all the difference to someone.  Make some memories.         


Friday, March 1, 2013

Don't hate me because I love my stories

About a month ago I told you all I had received some great news.  Life changing news.  News that was going to make my entire year better.  News that made 2013 worth living for.  I didn't go into details because I know I'm going to get some crap for my dirty little secret, that I have kept from my Facebook page.  I am a soap opera addict.  I love my soaps!  I love my stories!  Yes I am the cliche stay at home mom who lives for her stories.  I don't eat bon bon's though.  It's Chex Mix and Doritos.  Get it straight! 

Here's the thing.  I grew up watching daytime television.  Before I could talk, my Bushia (great-grandmother) and my mother always had the television turned on to ABC at noon Monday-Friday.  Neighbors came over with coffee and coffee cakes, and watched with them.  One of my early childhood memories is of Tad Martin (Michael E. Knight) returning from the dead and Dixie (Cady McClain) slamming the door in his face.  I think the story ran for two days like that, with them talking through a door.  I can't remember the whole story, but I can remember my mom laughing and crying all at the same time, and jumping on the phone to talk about it with her friends afterwards.  Even though I didn't watch them all the time because I was just a kid, I still followed those stories.  I watched them on my summer breaks and all my vacations from school.  No matter what was going on, the Soaps would always be there. 

After High School was over I started working right away.  I used to throw a VHS tape (what the hell is that?) in the VCR every morning.  I would record 6 hours of television every day just so I could watch my soaps when I got off work.  I began religiously watching them from that point on.  Soap Network, and DVR kept me up to date with my soaps up until they were cancelled in 2011.  Even my brother got into them a little bit while he was in college.  My family owned a little store at the time , and that was how we spent our afternoons.  Running the store and watching our stories.   

Devastated doesn't even begin to describe how I felt when I read that my soaps were being cancelled.  When I heard the news I felt like I was punched in the gut.  Losing One Life To Live and All My Children was like losing a family member.  These were shows that I had watched almost 25 years.  These were shows I bonded with family and friends over.  I grew up with the characters.  And in real life, the actors are kind of amazing.  Soap actors treat their fans very well.  I cried.  I admit it.  I cried like a baby. 

So what does a huge soap opera fan do when their favorite soaps get cancelled?  You fight for it.  And I did.  I fought for my shows.  I wrote into ABC every single day telling them what a mistake they were making.  I told them they were taking away a piece of my history.  My memories.  I didn't get along great with my grandmother.  We were like night and day.  Some good memories I do have with her though, are the summer days spent at her home watching the soaps.  Days spent with my family watching our shows.  Bonding moments me and the sister in law had.  All gone now.  I joined groups and I did what they told me too.  I wrote letters, and sent emails.  Still the  soaps were cancelled.  We fought so hard, but they didn't listen.  My soaps were gone forever, replaced by more reality television.  Devastated.

Last October I had the opportunity to go to an interactive fan event with a few of the actors from One Life To Live, called Loving Llanview.  I bought two tickets for me and my sister to go see our soap stars.  When we got their my sister upgraded our tickets so we can meet them and get pictures with them and autographs.  It was the best and worst day of my life.  I was so excited to meet my soap stars, but so sad b/c I was there to finally let them go.  I was basically there to give up and say goodbye. 

After the fan Q&A was over we went in back to meet them.  I tried so hard to hold it together.  I really did.  Got a picture with Melissa Archer (Natalie Buchanan) and talked a little.  Made it through without making an ass of myself.  Then we got in line to meet Kassie Depaiva (Blair Kramer).  I could feel myself losing it a little.  I stood in line holding back tears and trying not to faint b/c I was about to meet this woman who I have watched on TV for years and years.  The little old man in front of us followed her everywhere.  She knew him by name!  How cool is that?  She gave him the biggest hug and talked with him for a while, while I sat back and tried not to lose it, praying that I could hold it together. 

Our turn!  If you guessed that I would be strong and hold it together, you guessed wrong.  I walked up to her, and completely lost it.  I sobbed.  I ugly cried, in a room full of people.  I was able to get out a few words about how much I missed my stories, and Kassie gave me a few minutes to pull myself together, and a giant hug.  This woman lost her job, and she was consoling me and trying to make me feel better.  Soap stars are amazing, also they are hilarious.  I made it through the rest of the picture and autograph session without any more incidents.  We met Hillary B. Smith (Nora Buchanan), Rex Balsom (John-Paul Lavoisier), Victor Lord (Trevor St. John), and David Vickers Buchanan (Tuc Watkins).  All of them were so funny, and so sweet.  I did almost cry again on Hillary, but I was able to hold it together, since I had already unleashed on poor Kassie.  I left the event feeling sad and defeated.  I had fought for my soap stars.  I fought and lost.  Now I had just said goodbye. 

Fast forward to this new year.  In January a company called Prospect Park announced that they were reviving the soaps.  One Life To Live and All My Children will be returning, only it will be online.  I don't care where they go, b/c I will follow my shows anywhere.  I'm excited to see the direction the soaps will be going in.  I can't wait!  I know where I will be this spring.  I will be parked in front of my hulu + 4 days a week for 30 minutes, probably ugly crying.  It may not seem like big news to you, but it is huge for me, and I meant it when I said that it would change my year.  I encourage you all to check out the new and improved soaps, and the direction they are going.  Do it for me!  You won't be disappointed.  I would totally do it for you. 

Please check out these fb pages for more details.  There might even be some pictures of me on the last link.  Just look for the puffy eyes.!/paosrevolution?fref=ts!/SaveAMCandOLTL?fref=ts!/LovingLlanview?fref=ts

Thursday, February 14, 2013

makeup, the girl, and other things

Last night on the post (on facebook) about the girl being embarrassed at school over the eyeliner incident, I had someone tell me I should not let her wear eyeliner.  At first I wanted to have an internet caps lock fight, but I thought my best bet was to log off right away and go watch some comedy shows and sleep on it.  It was the first thing I thought about this morning when I woke up.  I would like to address it now.  Last night I wouldn't have been so nice about it.  The comment is gone.  I don't do internet drama.

Let me tell you a little something about this beautiful 14 yr old of mine.  If you have followed me for a while, you know she isn't my biological child.  You know we have her b/c her parents messed up and lost custody of her.  Because of the rough life she was forced to live she had absolutely no self esteem when we got her. 

Now she makes straight A's in school, tests above average on all her state tests, and only hangs around with nice girls.  She very easily could have gone in another direction. 
Yesterday she overheard a conversation on the bus.  The girl was talking about how bad her home life is, and how she was using drugs.  You know what my girl did?  First she texted me to ask who she should tell.  Then she waited for all the kids to get off the bus and she told the bus driver what the girl had said, because she didn't want any other kids to have to suffer at home the way that she did.  Most kids would have ignored that.

So the bottom line is, don't be a judgemental twit.  You don't know her story, and you don't know mine.  When we got her she was at least 20-30 pounds overweight because most of the food she ate was garbage.  That happens when you're cooking your own dinners at 8 years old.  It also happens when you're sitting at home lonely at that age, not knowing when your parents are going to come home or what condition they'll be in.  My girl can tell you some stories that will make your skin crawl, but she has risen above all that.  If she wants to wear a little eyeliner, lip gloss, and eye shadow to school after all she's been through, and that's the worst thing she's doing, I'd say I'm doing a pretty good freaking job.  Think before you hit that send button.  I delete and ban those keyboard warriors.        

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

It's my stupid birthday again

So tomorrow is my birthday and once again I'm a bummed out pile of whiny.  I hate my birthday.  I've hated it for as long as I can remember.  Most people want piles of presents, maybe a party, or to just be with their family.  I like to sit on my ass, maybe have a drink or 12, watch tv or read a book, and just to be left alone.  Bake me a cake and get out of my face.  Sounds kind of harsh doesn't it? 

As far back as I can remember most of my birthday's have sucked major donkey balls.  I honestly can't remember a good one I've had since I was about 14.  Even my 21st which is supposed to be the birthday of all birthdays kind of ended up sucking in the end.  I ended up taking care of a bunch of drunk, puking fools all night and making sure no punches were thrown. :-/  Now making fun of drunk idiots can be amusing, but not when they are puking in your car, or fighting.  I'm a small girl.  I can't be trying to break up a fight between two big grown ass men, and I shouldn't have to. 

On top of all that someone usually picks a fight with me on my damn day.  Never fails, a snarky smart ass, rude comment will be thrown my way.  Never freaking fails!  This is why I normally end up avoiding all people except for my immediate family, and I even avoid them a little.

Now normally I'm a glass half full kind of girl, but when you are going on your 31st birthday and you can only look back and remember one kick ass day out of 31, it tends to jade you a little.  I always start out the month with a little skip, and little optimism, but as the dreaded day gets a little closer, I get a little more pissy.  I can't help it.

Now I can tell you two things that have been done for me to redeem my day.  This year my husband and sister bought me tickets to go to a show, and meet some stars from the show after it was over.  This absolutely made my year.  My birthday will still suck as it usually does, but I will have the memories from that awesome day, and no asshat can take that away. 

The second was after my 21st.  I was dating this guy that completely ruined my birthday.  He was one of the drunken idiots.  The following weekend we went out again to try and salvage my birthday, and guess who got drunk and started acting like an idiot?  Yep that guy.  So I made him leave, and went out with my husband who was just my friend at the time.  We spent my birthday at a strip club, and a couple dance clubs.  Now that was an interesting day, and maybe a blog post for another day.

Anywho, I'm sorry to be such a debbie downer, but as you can tell I hate my birthday.  I try and stay positive anyway, and occasionally feel a little excitement about it, but it's just hard to stay positive about a day that's shit on you for the last 16 years.  I love my husband, because since the day we became friends he's tried to make it a special day for me, and no matter what he always gets at least a little smile out of me on the poo day.  So today and tomorrow I'll be hiding out on my couch in my yoga pants.  I probably won't even wash for the occasion.  I'll try to stay a little positive and at least be happy about living another year, but I can't make any promises. 


Wednesday, October 10, 2012

My girl

Now I know you've all heard me talking a lot about the girl lately.  I'm just so damn proud of her I can't help it.  I'm going to tell you a little bit about her, and hopefully you won't get sick of hearing me talk so much about her.  She's just been through so much that she deserves praise, and love even if it's from random internet folks who she will probably never meet. 

I met the girl 14 years ago, and she's been part of our family ever since.  I went to school with her parents.  She's always been like a niece to me.  Sometimes a bratty niece that I wanted to toss out the window, but a family member nonetheless.  She stood up in my wedding, and we picked her up all the time to spend weekends with our kids.

A few years ago she came to live with my family.  I won't get into all the details on this, because I don't want to badmouth anyone.  I'll just say she'll be with us until she's 18 or older, and her parents have exposed her to things that no adult should even be exposed to.

Despite all the things that she has seen, she's been an honor roll student since the day she started school.  She's been to about 7 different schools in her short life, and still managed to keep those grades up.  She's even had a ton of absences and late days, up until she came to live with us, and still stayed an A student.  I got a letter from her school last week.  She has to go take some tests because she scored so high on her state standardized testing last year.  Now I have it in writing that she's gifted.  She'll be taking high school level tests.  Tests that kids take to get placed in college.  How amazing is that?  

Did I mention she can sing?  Like really sing.  One thing I love is music, and very few people can move me to tears, but she does every time.  Once when she was much younger, she was singing at her schools talent show and the teacher accidentally stopped the cd.  Most kids would have died on the spot.  Not the girl.  She stood up there on the stage, and told her teacher to start the song over and then she nailed that song for the second time.  Last weekend she was invited to sing the National Anthem for a breast cancer benefit at a racetrack near us.  She was so nervous she was shaking.  I walked her around the park and encouraged her as much as I could.  By the time she went on she was calm enough to do it.  Nailed it!  People came up to me outside to tell me they thought she was professional singer and they couldn't believe she was only 14.  The caption on her photo for the racetracks fb page says she was one of the best the park has ever had.  I can't even tell you how proud I am.

I love that girl, and I'm so very proud of her.  I tell her this every single day.  We have talks about what she's going to do with the rest of her life, and I reassure her that she is better than her family ever was.  She's smart, she's beautiful, and she's a total sweetheart.  She helps me with the housework, cooking, and even taking care of the other kids.  She's made dinner for us on more than one occasion just because she wanted to.  Last night she did two loads of laundry after she finished her homework without me even asking her to. 

I'm so happy and blessed to have her in my life, and to have her be part of this family.  I actually couldn't imagine my life without her now.  I don't hate her parents.  I feel sorry for them.  They have missed so many great moments.  All her solos at her school concerts, all the awards she's been given, and what a great kid she's become.  We couldn't save them.  I'm still heartbroken over that.  All we can do is make sure that their daughter doesn't turn out like them.  So far I think we've done a pretty good job.  Way to go girl!     


Tuesday, October 9, 2012

My addiction

People have told me I drink too much.  Truth is, I don't drink enough.  Two to three alcoholic beverages a week is about average for me, depending on the kind of week I've had or if there is a party going on.  If there's a party double that number.  If I run out of booze (that never happens) I don't crawl around shaking, sniffing rubbing alcohol, or go begging for money for my next bottle.  I just make a wish for more beer when that happens, and then I drink some chamomile tea. 
Want to know what I'm addicted to?  COFFEE!  Like I'm so addicted to coffee I would lose my mind if coffee went away tomorrow.  I would beg, steal, and maybe even sell my children for one little sweet cup of that amazing bitter devil juice.  Here's a story about my coffee addiction.  This is also probably in the top five angriest moments of my life.  A bear almost lost his life over this.

A few years ago we only had one vehicle.  We lived in a very small town but there was a store and gas station, kind of in walking distance.  Me and the little walked there a few times a week to pick up extra things we needed, or just to get out of the house. 
One dreadful morning I woke up and went straight to the coffee pot, like I do every single day.  I opened up the coffee container and to my horror, there was only about two teaspoons of coffee in there.  WHAT THE F*CK!!!  I called up Mr. Sexy Bear and ripped him a new one.  He was the last person to make coffee.  Why didn't he tell me that there was no more?  Why, why, why???!!!!  I'm losing my mind and shuddering just thinking about it. 
Ok not a problem, I'll walk my tired ass to the gas station.  The coffee there sucks, but it will at least hold me over until my husband gets home with more coffee.  Go outside to check the temperature.  F*ck me!  It's cold outside.  Did I mention it's winter?  I have a baby in the house.  Ok not a baby, baby.  He was probably around two, but still.  Do I make him suffer and freeze his baby ass off for my addictions?  No that's not right.  I can do this. 
I make a cup of tea.  It's not the same!  It's not even close.  I drink the tea while still steaming mad over the fact that my husband forgot to tell me there was barely any coffee.  He decides now would be a good time to call me.  He's very apologetic over this whole horrible situation he's put me in.  I tell him not to freaking call me until he is on his way home with coffee in hand, and even then I won't be speaking to him.  Just let me know he's got the stuff. 
Now I'm pacing the house.  I need coffee.  I will settle for a teeny tiny little cup.  Just need to a few gulps of the nectar of the gods.  Just two or three gulps.  That's all I'm asking for.  Enough to get me through the next few hours. 
Go back outside to check the temperature.  F*ck!!!  It's still winter, and I still have a baby here.  Everyone I know that loves me enough to bring me coffee is either working or dead.  F*ckers!
Ok Panda baby.  We can do this!  That's me talking to myself.  Another cup of tea.  Tea still sucks.  Hubs calls AGAIN to let me know how sorry he is for not telling me we are out of coffee.  "SERIOUSLY LEAVE ME THE HELL ALONE!  I WILL KILL YOU!  I'M SERIOUSLY MORE PISSED OFF AT YOU RIGHT NOW THAN I HAVE EVER BEEN!  IF YOU WERE IN FRONT OF ME RIGHT NOW I THINK I WOULD HIT YOU!"  That ended that conversation.  He decided it was best to leave me alone until he brought the stuff home.
Ding!  Idea brewing, like the coffee that's not!  I remembered I had a few little teaspoons of coffee.  I would boil some water and run it through a filter in a mug.  Hopefully that would be enough for me to get a semi strong (I like my coffee to put hair on my chest) cup of coffee. 
As I stood there pouring boiling water over and over into that few tablespoons of coffee that moments ago I had considered snorting, it hit me.  I'm addicted.  I'm highly addicted to coffee.  I've paced the house, and neglected my child all day, because I was out of coffee.  Here I stand with my caffeine headache, and slight shakes, holding that filter with the tiniest bit of coffee grounds like it is a newborn baby.  I'm pouring that water ever so gently so I don't lose one little drop of that coffee.  If I had spilled it I would have sucked it right off the counter top.  I drank that little cup of coffee in about one minute.  It was like a little cup of weak Heaven. 
Mr. Sexy Bear came home with new container of coffee, and I snatched that shit right out of his hands without saying a word.  He didn't say a word either.  He knew that it was best to leave me and my coffee alone.  After I finished humping it, I brewed the strongest pot of coffee I've ever had in my life, sat my addicted ass in the kitchen, and whispered sweet words only coffee understands.  I got that night off of mommy/wife duties, and I just drank coffee like I've never drank coffee before.  I think I had a coffee orgasm. 

After that experience I thought it was best that me and coffee not see so much of each other.  I could no longer drink my pot a day, because I couldn't survive without it.  Now I only have two cups a day, and I've switched over to tea in the late afternoon and evenings.  I never want to experience that again.  Even now the memory of it haunts me.  I still reach for my coffee the second I wake up, and don't function without that first cup, but now I only allow myself two cups a day.  One in the morning to do the breakfast/cleaning thing, and one in the early afternoon for a little pick me up. 
So yes I have a drinking problem.  I'm Panda, and I'm a coffeeholic.  I can say that for sure now.  I've been to dark places, and I've done many things for coffee that I'm not proud of.  I hit rock bottom and I did something about it.  Now you try and touch my booze or chocolate, and I'll rip your arm off and beat you with it. 
Hubs has been forgiven, and he has never made that mistake again.  I love you dear husband!  Now I can laugh about the time I almost killed you for a cup of coffee.  Drink coffee!  It will help you type dumb stories like this one.  Have a great day!   

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

My confession... I'm a slacker

First I want to say, I love running my facebook page. I started it because I thought that it would be something fun, and mostly because I know my friends and family were getting a little sick of some of my more vulgar posts.  What can I say?  I'm an a-hole sometimes.  I kept doing it because I got many messages and comments thanking me for doing it. When someone tells you that you make their day brighter, it feels damn good.  This is why I will continue to do it, unless you all want me to stop.  I guess I'll just have to talk to myself if that happens. 

A lot of you know that I've found myself in a bit of a funk since last winter. I've been stressed. I've been depressed, and it seems like life just keeps kicking me. I've been doing things to change it.  It's been a struggle, but I'm in a pretty good place right now, and it's been better.  Still not great, but definitely better.

Before I get to my confession let me start by telling you, only my youngest is my biological child. This is why you mostly hear me talking about him. That's a long story, and one I'm not going to get into probably ever. I have four kids. They are all mine in one way or another. Only the two I mostly post about live with me full time. I'm telling you this so I don't get any comments asking why I'm only talking about one or two of my kids in this confession.

My confession...

I'm a slacker
I have not been that great of a parent. I've been a good mom, and I take care of my kids, but I haven't been great. I used to be great. I used to work with my youngest every day. He was as smart as most four and five year old kids, by the time he was two. The depression/stress took that mom away from him. Yeah I get up and feed him, get him dressed, kiss him, hug him, and all that stuff that moms do, but I haven't gone above and beyond like I used to.  I've been a slacker.  I took great pride in how well I took to being a mom.  I was kind of a natural, and what I didn't know, I researched the hell out of and figured it out.

Two reasons I am admitting this publicly.  The first is I want to continue to run my page, and even blog once in a while, but I will not be around as much.  The second reason is maybe someone else will read this and realize they need to make some changes too.  I never thought my page would actually help people, but I have the messages to prove that it has.  I don't want to give that up.  We all need a little laughter in our lives.  It's what keeps me sane. 

So if you have noticed that I haven't been around that often this last week, it's because I've been making it a point to spend more time with my kids without my cell phone, or the internet on in the background.  How can I limit their electronic time, when I'm glued to the computer/phone as much as they are to the television/video games? 

Today I spent the whole late morning/afternoon with them at the park, and I never even took my phone out once.  I sat there and I watched them play on the slides, and climb the bars, and I smiled and yelled words of encouragement.  Every time those kids looked up to make sure I was watching them, I was.  I took them on a long nature walk where we talked about everything we saw.  We saw weird plants, mushrooms growing all over, cool looking spider webs, tadpoles, frogs, fish, and even a couple of deer up close.  These are all things I would have missed if I had my head buried in my cell phone. This is an activity that a month ago, I wouldn't have felt like doing because I was being a slacker. 

This evening I spent about an hour coming up with a schedule that I'm hoping will keep everyone happy, including me.  My family used to follow pretty strict routine, and that worked for us.  That routine kept my house clean, gave my family time with me, and gave me time to myself.  I will not be around as much, but will continue to post daily, just not all day.  My phone will not be glued to my side any longer.  my computer is only getting turned on at night when the kids are in bed, or if it's our scheduled free time.  I'm done being a slacker.  I have the best family in the world.  I am not going to put them off to the side any longer.  They need me and I need them.  This lazy slacker will still be lazy, but not when it comes to the kids.  They make me smile, and I want to make them smile.

I want to say thank you to the likers who will stick around, even though I won't be there as much.  As for the ones who won't, well I'm sorry to see you go, but my family is more important to me.  Much love to my likers!  And with that, I'm out.  Tomorrow starts the first day of the new schedule and I have to get up early for the first time in months.  Wish me luck!  xoxo~Panda