Thoughts For Coffeetime

It’s coffee time and it’s the weekend. My thoughts today are rather all over the place today. I’m glad it’s the weekend and time to relax a bit. Hubs and the boy will be heading off to the British Car show tomorrow leaving me home alone for either projects or relaxation. I have yet to decide.

Work is going much better and I’m starting to actually feel useful around the offices I’m placed in. Hurrah! At last! Sometimes the task lists are daunting and I have no idea what to do with some of them, but for the most part, with some detective work, I can do something. As a float nurse, that’s what it’s all about. Getting through what we can and muddling through the rest of you can.

Homework, for the most part, is going well with the boy. In saying this, we still have today to get through since we didn’t do Friday’s homework yet. Bummer on my part. I wasn’t feeling it yesterday. I suppose mom needed a little break.

Have you ever noticed how God works in those little mysterious ways? Lately, I’ve been talking to an old friend who has made me feel connected to so many good things in life. I so enjoy our conversations each day. It is something that has brought great joy to my life.

So, what’s new in your world this week? How has your week been? Join me for coffee and let’s make a connection!

Ugh! Calgon Take Me Away!

Ever have a day, a week, a year where you just want a do-over? Or maybe just hit the delete button for so many things that have happened? This year has been it for sure and although I’m not feeling like hitting the delete button today, I could sure use a bubble bath, candles, some expensive chocolates, wine, a vacation lodge in the bahamas. 

Oops, sorry, I meandered off for a moment. The point being that we all have those times where we need to destress! 

I’m not sure about you, but my life is hectic enough with just my 2 remaining kids at home, working and the house. But so much more is added on to us nowadays it seems. There’s carting everyone around and work and… homework.

Homework takes up my evenings with the boy. It just never seems to be finished. It isn’t for lack of trying either. I seem to lose him just when it’s time to pick up the other kid! Grrr. Getting him back to task is nearly impossible!

On days there’s lots of homework it makes getting dinner nearly impossible! Did I mention the ADHD issue? Today is one of those days and somehow homework is relegated to me because I have better luck with him, but not when there is this much.

I’m not sure how my mom did this, but I do know that my brother and I were independent. We did our own homework. When did this change for kids? When did it change that husband and wife couldn’t spend any time together because of homework? Calgon please take me away! I need a vacation and it’s only the second week of school!

Time for Coffee

Oh how I’ve missed having coffee with you! Let’s get a quick bite to eat and catch up.I’ve made some homemade oatmeal chocolate chip butterscotch cookies or there’s strawberries and angel food cake of you would prefer that.most of all, I’ve been looking forward to your company.

The kids are back at school now and life is back to it’s normal school year routine. Hard to believe I sent my second one off to college but she’s working hard and having a blast. What did we do before cell phones? She texts me and snap chats me almost every day. She’s gone to a Cardninals baseball game, done some Zumba and salsa to boot! Don’t worry, she has always studied and is doing that too. 

Number 3 is transitioning to  sophomore year as well. He so far has all A’s so what’s not to love there. I have a feeling that this will be a big year for him. He’s been going through a lot of changes lately but knowing that he has the love and support of his family will be the strength he needs throughout his life. He’s challenged by teachers to be his best, including his art teacher. I think she won’t be disappointed knowing my baby’s mad art skills! But when that teacher seems to single you out and speak directly to you in front of the class? Well, you just go do your thing! Go shine!

The little man seems to be adjusting to 4th grade fairly well. Granted it’s just a week so far, but homework is getting done, bedtime is being met and chores are mostly getting done. Work in progress! I’ll be talking to his teacher on Monday to see about behavior and work to see what improvements can be made. Pray for him and for me! I’m trying to be the proactive parent this year and working less means more time helping him stay on task.

Lastly, I’m back at work. I wish I could say I’m loving it, but it is work after all. I’m slow but learning and getting there. I finally have great teachers. I’ll get there and I sure felt better coming home Thursday than I did on Tuesday! Next week is the same but longer days. I’ll get there. I’ll get to know the job and the people and I’ll be just fine. Then, and only then, will I be able to say I love my job.

So, how was your week? I’m dying to hear about it! I hope it was wonderful just like you!

Ah Back to Work and Normality

This morning as I ventured out the door to make the trek to work, I felt as though I was never going to get this new job figured out. So many things to learn and relearn and I’m not getting any younger. It’s not that I’m beyond learning new things, it’s just that I seem to need such repetition to get the things I learn into my thick skull! Yes, that’s right, my thick skull. 

You see, I have done my former job for so long that I could do It in my sleep, except for the driving, but I knew how to do it so well. Now, I’m faced with new challenges everyday that take most people surely less time to conquer than it takes me! That’s what I’ve told myself anyway.

Overall, I like my new job. I enjoy the challenges immensely, but my brain hurts. I like computers but good grief there are at least 2 ways to do everything at my new job and sometimes I get so confused when one person shows me one way, then someone else comes along and insists I do the same thing a different way simply because it’s easier for them. Lord, please help me! I will get through it though. I know there will be an end to my training and I will be out on my own soon enough! God save us all!

At home, the youngest 2 kiddos are adjusting to life back in school. We have new rules in place and they are both in bed at 9. Yes, my 15 year old included. Homework is the priority but chores, too, must be done. It is a work in progress but hopefully will manifest itself by a successful school year. There will always be exceptions along the way. I know that. This isn’t my first bicycle race. 

I’m excited about the changes we’ve made and the best part to report is that Mr. 9 year old only had his homework fit once so far. He’s decided that it has to be done and the sooner it’s done the better! He also wants his teacher to be happy! I will continue to use this tool as much as I can. 

Working less is a blessing for me. I may have much less money but I will have happier kids. I think happier and more successful kids are the best goals I can achieve in my lifetime. 

Open Communication

images-43.jpegSo today’s word prompt is open.  After thinking about this for quite some time, I decided on open communication as my topic.  I have to tell you that this is a subject that is near and dear to my heart.  Communication is something I happen to be very good at.  I’m a blabber mouth and you will always know how I feel about something, but that is not what I’m necessarily talking about here.  The communication I’m talking about is more the kind where people can openly discuss things without fear of admonition for their views or concerns.  It’s a way of communicating.

In our house, I find that open communication is so important.  I want my kids to be able to come to me with questions, concerns or problems without fear of condemnation or reproach and that is the home I have built.  It doesn’t mean that there is no discipline.  Believe me.  There is plenty of that when it’s necessary.  When my children have questions about those sensitive subjects, you know the ones, the ones we didn’t want to ask our parents, my children come to me.  Not only do they come to me, they bring their friends.  I’ve done more sex education in my home than you can shake a stick at.  Sometimes it can make me uncomfortable, but I know it’s necessary and I know that the information is given properly and very well.  I am, after all, a registered nurse and a mom.  I give the facts and from a Catholic viewpoint which is age appropriate.

Open communication is more than that though, Thank God!  It’s being able to speak to my husband and truly talk to him.  It’s not being judged.  It’s him not being judged, which he struggles with still.  Open communication is so important for a happy home.  At least it is in my  home.  I can’t imagine feeling like I couldn’t say what was on my mind.  I don’t always say what is there, but that is usually because I’m weighing out whether it is necessary to say or not, but knowing that we can talk about things in our home is important to me.  Knowing that my children can come to me with what is on there minds, or with any questions or concerns instead of going to friends or the internet for answers is of immense importance to me.  I am so grateful for having this gift in our home and sharing it with you.  It’s not always the easiest route, especially with a very curious 9 year old boy, but I’d rather he get his answers from me than anywhere else.

It’s Time for Weekend Coffee!

I’m so glad you could make it this morning.  I’ve been looking forward to this time we share together all week.  I’m telling you, our weekend coffee is the highlight of my week. If we were sitting down together today, I would break out the Thomas coffee I’ve just purchased.  I’ve been so excited to share this with you.

You see, my dear friends and neighbors are from St. Louis.  I have lots of family there, too.  I love St. Louis with all my heart.  My daughter will be heading there for university in the fall, so she likes it there as well.  Anyway, I digress.  Thomas coffee is an amazing find.  When my friend, Tracey, ran a doughnut shop, the only coffee she served or would serve was Thomas coffee.  I have to tell you, I tried it once and I was hooked.  I think I’ll go make us a cup instead of just telling you about it.  It’s something you won’t believe until I tell you, but there is no bitter aftertaste.  I can’t wait for that first cup. I’m sure you’ll like it, too. You’ll see. I just wish we had something sweet to go with it.

In other news this week, my middle daughter graduated from high school last Sunday. It couldn’t have been a nicer day.  The weather was perfect and the ceremony was beautiful all along with a Catholic Mass.  We are Catholic and she graduated from a Catholic school so what better send off into the vast, new world than with a Mass.  Our pictures turned out very well, too.  I would have liked some more, like one of my dad and brother with the graduate, but that didn’t happen.  We all went out to eat lunch afterwards which was delicious and the best part was that we were all together.  Such a joy. Of course, after lunch was over, we came home, rested a bit, then she took off to attend various parties for the rest of the day.  Ah, youth!

All the kids are out of school so summer vacation has officially begun.  It’s nice not having to wake them up in the mornings and make sure the boy is ready for school.  The girls are independent, so we just hear them getting ready and off they go around 7:15 every morning.  Next year we won’t have a driver for either of the ones left at home, so we will be back on full-time taxi duty.  I will miss that, but it’s only a year until we have yet another licensed driver in the house.  Hubs and I have been spoiled over the last 4 years always having a teenager to run errands and such.

My Kindness challenge is going well so far.  I’ve just finished week 3.  This week, we focused on being, thinking and saying kind things.  This is a tough one, but I’m starting to get better.  It’s not to say that I’m an ogre or some other terrible monster.  I do have a temper, however, so it’s twice as important for me to remain calm, gentle and kind during those times.  I’m a work in progress.

Being a more gentle person is not as hard as it sounds and I’ve found that it helps my relationships. I have found over the last 3 weeks that my marriage is much more infused with love and patience.  Hubs is changing too.  I can tell he is more engaged with me than he was, and our marriage shows that. Our marriage is the focus like it should be in our life, the rest is secondary.  I love this man with my whole heart, unconditionally.  I think he’s seeing a change in me, too.  I hope he is.

Well, I hate to guzzle and to, but it’s time to get the boy up and moving.  He has a baseball game in a little over an hour.  I thought it would be raining, but it isn’t raining yet.  This little apple of my eye, my not-so-little baby boy, my sweet future who is too big to fit in the bed between Hubs and I is growing up too fast.  Soon enough, he’ll be wanting the car keys too.

Today’s Stressor

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This is exactly how I feel! Stressed beyond stressed! We have an appraisal guy coming today. That was totally unexpected, for one thing. I am so not impressed! We have 2 hours to get this house in order and it’s far from it! HELP! CALGON, TAKE ME AWAY!

I hate the unexpected things in life, especially when it comes to my house. We are firm believers in actually living in our house so, our home would never grace the pages of any Home and Garden magazine. I do try, but with my kids and those from the neighborhood always here, it just isn’t happening.

Lord help me to get this together today, somehow! Just had to share this briefly. This is my biggest pet peeve but unless I get mean, there is no rest for the already weary.

Blessings, my friends,
Deirdre

If We Were Having Coffee

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If we were having coffee today, I’d hope to meet at my favorite coffee place here in town..not only for great coffee, but tasty treats, too! We would catch up on what the kids have been up to this week.

All my kids are out of school. It’s hard to believe another school year is over. I now have a 4th grader, a sophomore and my 2 oldest girls will both be out of the house in college next fall. Where has the time gone? My second daughter graduates tomorrow from high school. I can hardly believe it.

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I would tell you how the kindness challenge is going well. I’m enjoying the changes I’m seeing in my life as a result. I’ve been doing it for 2 weeks now and I love it. I can’t say much more accept that it’s awesome and everyone can join.  revofkindness.jpg

I would share with you the absolute joy that I was nominated for the Liebster Award. Yes, me! Can you believe it? Someone thinks my writing is good! Good enough that I should get an award! Exhilarating for me! I never win anything or receive any accolades for anything I do so what a highlight to my week!

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Dad also got his driver’s license back. His eye surgery was a success so far and the full recovery isn’t even complete! He had let his license lapse several years ago due to his sight, but he is a realist. He knows his limits. This week, he passed his test and bought a car. I’m so proud of him! Watch out though if you see him. He was always a bit wild!

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Lastly, I would have to tell you I’m really disappointed in the last two games my St Louis Blues have played in the Conference Finals.  I mean, really, they are playing The San Jose Sharks game instead of making the Sharks’ play the Blues’ game.  C’mon guys, don’t fail us now!  We are so close.  Your fans can taste it!  We have another game tonight and we are counting on you.  If there isn’t a turn around tonight, I am afraid this season is over for us.  I am a Blues fan.  I have my jersey, my t-shirt, my blanket, my garden flag, my van sticker, etc.  They’ve come so far, we are so close, but these last two games this week, well, they choked.  No goals scored in two games.  I know in my heart they can do it.  They are sort of like the Cubs of the NHL. We can’t go 100 years without the beautiful Stanley cup.  We deserve it this year.

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So what’s new with you this week? What new with the family? The writing? Anything fascinating or simply ordinary happen? You know me, I love our coffee weekends together! I never want our time together to end!

If We Were Having Coffee

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If we were having our weekend coffee today, I’d tell you this has been an eventful week! I had my meeting with my surgeon regarding my pancreatic cyst.  I finally got the results from my biopsy that was taken on April 19th!  Yes, almost a month later!  Can you believe it took that long?  Me either!  The initial results took only a week and they wanted to do more testing.  They called and told me I had many atypical cells which means my cyst was precancerous.  The best means to take care of this is to surgically remove it.  It’s a big cyst.  I’m ready.  Bring it on!

My week was also filled with working with wonderful people in another department of my new place of employment.  As many of you know, I’m a nurse and this past week was nurse’s week.  As this department is very generous, we were fed all week!  This was not so good for my diet, but my belly was kept full and let me tell you, it was very tasty! We had pasta, salad, fruit, baked potatoes,  cookies, doughnuts, sandwiches, breakfast sandwiches, cinnamon rolls, and more!  These people know how to feed their employees well!

I would tell you that it was my son’s last hockey game of this session and my daughter’s last high school Spring Show.  It’s hard knowing that next year, I’ll only have 2 children at home, but also kind of exciting at the same time.  I love knowing that my 2 oldest girls will be pursuing their dreams in college.  Knowing that I have 2 birds that have flown the coop and 2 that are still in the nest is a comforting thought.  I must be doing something right.  I’m proud of my 2 oldest girls.

For now, let’s just sit back and enjoy our Colombian blend coffee with our Creme Brulee creamer.  It’s delicious.  I’ve eaten so much.  I’ll stick to my small omelet for breakfast.  What will you have?

 

When Genetics Just Suck

Anxiety and depression are cruel twists of fate. In my case, I suffer from both of these as many people do. Nothing terrible happened to me that I couldn’t handle. I really don’t have PTSD as a therapist tried telling me once. I think she really could see everyone as having some sort of traumatic event causing them to have PTSD but truth be told, I think I’m my case, genetics are more to blame.  It just sucks.

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The depression and anxiety can be all consuming at times, but the anxiety really is the worst for me. It always has been. For me, it got really bad in college. I had to sign up for a class late which meant missing the first day of class. That threw me off the rest of the semester causing me to have panic attacks every time I would get to the doors of the building. I didn’t know how to drop the class and was anxious about new places so instead, I took the F. It killed my GPA there. The recovery was brutal. I didn’t go back to that university thanks to my anxiety and panic attacks. I felt so alone.

Eventually, I returned to school but was ready to face the world. I had good friends and a good support which really helped. It’s thanks to my support system that I am the nurse I am today. I also had better control over my anxiety.. I was in a completely different stage of my life by then.

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Now, fast forward to today. I’m a mother of 4 amazing kids. We’ve weathered many storms together but always come out ahead. 2 of my 3 daughters have to take meds for depression/anxiety. I am the one that caused this wretched twist of genetic mayhem. Now, my other daughter, may need medication, too. Are my genes so strong as to cause this for everyone? What a lovely thing to pass along.

Living with anxiety can be crippling, especially when it’s paired with panic attacks. All rational thought processes are out the window with anxiety. Your rational mind tells you you’re being stupid but the anxiety has you believing you will die because your heart will jump out of your chest if it beats any faster. Living with anxiety simply sucks the fun out of life at times.

I’m doing much better than I used to, but it still rears its ugly head from time to time. Chemical imbalances of the brain are just as real as high blood pressure and diabetes but the stigma associated with these diseases is profound. Why do people judge so readily? I believe it’s because they simply don’t or refuse to understand.

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Take a moment and put yourself in the shoes of someone with anxiety or panic attacks or depression. Imagine being stressed out making a phone call to order a pizza. I’ve lived that. For lack of any other way to say it, it simply sucks. Normal, everyday activities are hard but we struggle through them because we have to live. Once we get through the hard parts? We are awesome and tons of fun! More importantly, we are just as normal as you.