Ice Cream Issues

Don’t Stop Believin’ by Journey

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We climbed back in our car after losing about 2 hours’ time and drove on.  The chatter picked back up and our singing out loud filled the car. I think, we compete subconsciously at who sounds better but let’s face it, we both equally suck.

We made it the Oregon border, where we stopped for a potty break and decided ice cream was a good idea.  However, I don’t think I mentioned it was nearly 115 degrees outside and the minute I stepped out the door with my vanilla cone it turned to sweet cream.  It was running all over the place.  My hand was white and it continued down my forearm and as I begged for help with the one napkin we were given, she laughed the kind of laugh that was infectious.  We stood there for a few seconds laughing as I struggled to get my shit together. Tears streamed down my face and as we came to the back parking lot we passed a car with the bumper sticker that read “I have issues,” and at the moment, I had some serious issues!  I posed for a photo, we made it back in the car and I sucked down an ice cream cone in a way that most people would think was savage.

The scenery around us had started changing. The Oregon green had changed to browns of many and tumbled weeds were blowing in the distance.  The miles and hours passed until we made it to the Idaho border.  We needed to fill up the car, use the restroom, and gather snacks.  The gas station had two very unfortunate characters behind the counter. I attached myself to my sister’s hip, I knew she would always be the one to do the ass kicking on our trips.  We filled a tiny plastic bag with unhealthy snacks, drinks, paid for gas, and there was no bathroom.

Next door in the middle of nowhere was a questionable casino.  We knew it was our only chance at a real toilet. Although we were hesitant to enter, our bulging bladders drew us in and what was inside those doors was unbelievable.  If one could picture the most redneck version of a casino, the smell of dust, dirty body, sweat and a big room cropped dusted by cigarette smoke – that is what we walked into. It was some place I wish we never entered and knowing what it was like inside, in retrospect, I defiantly would have chosen to squat and pee between two cars rather than use that bathroom. As we left, a little person with a cowboy hat, cut off shirt, sitting on a stool so high it was twice his height, gave us a head nod.

As we exited the building of smells, a ploom of what was trapped inside that building followed us to the car.  It was my turn to drive, we jumped inside and in my uncomfortable state of glee, I left the parking lot over one curb and then another and we were on the road again.

 

Cline Falls Road

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She arrived later than she thought.  We unpacked her car and repacked into my car.  The tank was full and we were off on the first leg of our trip from Independence to Redmond.  Not really considered a “leg” of the trip because we had 17 hours ahead of us to Utah.

She had just driven over four hours to my place, drained the bladder and jumped back in for almost another three hours. As soon as we were both trapped inside, the chatter started and we carried it all the way to Sisters.  We started at least 15 stories and only finished six of them but we always made it back around to one that we didn’t finish, sooner or later we always finished them but it might be on the fourth day we were together.  Today, we still have unfinished stories.

It was not our first trip but it always felt like the first time.  The excitement…for me was like a kid on Christmas morning.  As an adult travelling was with my sister was like Christmas morning.  Our trips were this way.  The entire trip wrapped like a huge gift under the tree and we never really knew what was inside, every step or mile of the way it was thrilling like tearing open the gift you wanted all year long.

We talked and talked, she made sure to toss in a bag of peanut butter chocolate cups and we shared them as the odometer numbers increased and emptied a Nalgene bottle of water.  Hours passed and carried us to our resting place. We made our way to Cline Falls Road, she turned left, left again, and as the curves in the road wrapped us closer to our destination. We realized how late it was.

We were both sleepy, the windows opened to keep us awake, and our long hair tossed around us. I told her to slow her speed and in the darkness police lights flashed around the car.  As she struggled to find a place to pull over in the central desert, she drove on…further than my instincts would have taken me.  As I insisted her pull over, we came to our left hand turn. She turns and pulls over to the right curb barely out of the entrance and as we giggle and are slightly nervous about what we did wrong.

She insisted she wasn’t going too fast…the officer walked to the left side of the car and just as he asks for her license and tells her she was speeding; I start screaming at the top of my lungs as a sprinkler hoses me down from the top of my head to the middle of the chest.  It passes by once, screaming, it passes and again as my sister tries to silence me and politely insists I roll the window up. The officer looks down at me and shines his flashlight in my eyes without a smile, I babble about the sprinkler.  He was not entertained as I struggled in the front seat to not continue laughing and as well as I know my sister…she would break at any time, I kept it together until she got her ticket.

We continued on to our resting place laughing so hard we couldn’t catch us breathe until we drifted to sleep. The next morning, we woke before 6am and we still laughing.

 

The Great Wall

My Sister by Reba

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She and I weren’t always close.  We fought all the time.  Our room was divided down the middle with masking tape.  I was the tag-along to her, always sneaking her clothes and shoes after she left for school, borrowing her eye shadow, stealing a quick spritz of her Colors perfume.  I was the typical envious younger sister who wanted so much to be like her big sister.

Sharing a room was difficult for her more than me. The masking tape served as a barrier like the Great Wall, for if anything of mine crossed that line it was thrown in frustration on top of my bed or hurled into my closet. This was a frequent occurrence in our red, black, and white themed room. A table separated our twin beds with a boom box that we turned on every night at bedtime, the music ran all night, so low that we strained to hear it and drifted to sleep. My sister used to hum and sometimes whisper the lyrics. I loved sharing a room with her. Although there was always a point of contention in our room usually because of messy me, I think that I loved being on her heels because it was attention she was forced to give me because I was annoying the hell out of her.

I wanted to be where she was, I wanted to be like her, and I longed to be included in her daily life.  Even if that meant being tied up knee socks and tights by her at the ankles, knees, wrists and arms while she and a friend laughed at me as I struggled to move or fell on my face when I did actually get to my feet. I do remember feeling upset but I don’t remember if I actually cried. I suppose I deserved the friendly torture after all the little sister pestering she had to put up with. It’s funny how now, when I write about it, I remember it fondly.

She had the perfect hair, the prettiest dresses when she went to school dances, she had the coolest clothes and this amazing leather jacket that I took from her closet numerous times she wasn’t wearing it, I would pack it in my backpack and put it on when I got to school then pack it home and quickly hang it back in her closet.

She was beautiful, had everything I didn’t because she was older, and she did everything first. She was the best role model a little sister could have. What an impression our shared room has left on my heart and mind. This box shaped space she shared first selflessly with me and it became so much more than just a room we shared that I annoyed her in daily.  This room where she and I shared our childhood gave me great understanding of how simple acts of love, torture, companionship, frustration, and laughter would propel our relationship to break down the Great Wall. I love my sister for everything that she is, strives to be, and the relationship we have is like none other.

I am often told by people that they are so envious of the relationship I have with my sister, the way I talk about her as if I see her everyday, sharing simple details as if we lived next door to each other. We lift one another up every day, every step, one foot in front of the other as the time passes between our visits.

Free Write\ing

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Recently, I have become very aware of how busy life is, no, I didn’t just wake up yesterday and realize it. Over the last few years my twin boys have gotten older thus a lot busier with activities.

I don’t know if it’s just my twins but since the beginning mine have been completely attached at the hip.  I constantly ask adult twins or people who know twins…. if they still get along as adults.  I have heard way more no’s thank yes’s.  I would say there is something special about having multiples…my twins are something else.  The connection is crazy real, crazy intense, and I hope it’s always crazy close!

This weekend we rocked the Yamaha Twin Engine for about 12-16 hours and two tanks.  Sun was awesome…like therapy for me. Burning energy, no worries…completely blissed out.

Sunday, we had our longest and closest friends come with their children for the day.  They live about an hour away with two kids about our ages, not twins, but just as busy as any other family out there, maybe even a bit busier.

So, I don’t get to see this friend of mine very often…I think one year we went 7 months without seeing each other maybe longer.  It’s tough as children get older and move up thru the grades in school. It gets harder and harder to plan and see friends especially if you live an hour from each other. Even friends that live miles away somehow find their way back to each other.

Yesterday, in my complete blissed out state I realized I was in these… numbered hours of perfection (and I have written in my blog about perfection not existing, so here I go contradicting myself). Sitting and laughing with my friend, screaming over the boat engine and the yelling kids. It was heaven! And oh, did I laugh.  The good kind, the belly laugh.  The kind of laugh where a few hours later, that moment pops into your head again and you start laughing out loud.

I can’t really give you (my readers) one specific example of the joy that occurred yesterday on the river in a boat with our friends.

I will try a few words/phrases:

Being in the water (I love the water)

Playing with a foam football in the river

Splashing a dry person before they splash you

Cruising in the boat, good music, drinks

Good company…

Jumping off the boat mid float

Laughing so hard you almost wet your pants

Chasing kids in the water

Splashing….

Tubing, floating, food

My twins finish school this week for the summer and my house is buzzing with excitement!! I hope you all have the kinds of friends we do and get to experience these moments of joy, bliss, and enchantment throughout life with them.

Enjoy your week, my friends!!

 

 

You Can’t Win Them All

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Do you ever get into a conversation that is going no where? After a few “back and forth” across the table, you resign yourself to the fact that there is no point.  Yet, in some sick and twisted way you still engage and can’t walk away. I think it is hard for me because I can’t just walk away when I don’t believe in something someone is saying.

I strive to be heard – the real me.  For someone to truly know me inside and out, the good the bad, the ugly. Also, all the warm fuzzy parts of me – what I think is a sense of humor, kind, full of love, and a dreamer.

Somewhere across the table there is a personification of the strength of Thor – there isn’t anything breaking through no matter how much there might be a shock and aww moment.

For me, it’s not about him winning or me winning…. it’s about compromise and the tug of war that continues to go on seems to get you no where. He pulls, you pull. What is this actually helping you either of you – defiantly not seeing more clearly.

I hate to say it but I have seen my clearest sense about me when I am put under extreme dangerous situations or on any days of trauma. There have been deaths that came unexpectedly, illness, accidents, near death experiences for me and in the eye of the tornado, I know I am the calming force.  As the tornado dissolves I usually end up with heavy emotions weighing on my shoulders the way “Atlas” held the weight of the world on his “Shoulders.”

Some days you don’t win them all, some days I don’t win at all. Sometimes there are a lot of deep breaths where I have learned to quite my mind. And take a long moment to pause and realize I am blessed with.

 

** Keep watching for my book to order later this month!

Go Ahead, Unfriend Me!

unfriendEvery day, I go to this object which is now so much more than just a common telephone.  It is the root of all evil…..do I still get sucked in, yes!! But do I complain, not really!!

It’s full of gadgets and buttons, that I may push by accident and who the hell knows what will happen when I do?? I attempt to push these buttons with purpose and knowledge of what will really happen….as if the world will stop!  At this point, my children know my phone better than I do.  Does life require me to have this…..hell no….but I have fallen into this sucking vortex of technology.  Yes, I can make my way through an apple product (shit, don’t shoot me for be an apple person) but I can get done what I need too on most Apple products.

So, with social media as it is today….I will claim its awful, what’s the point, and -uck it…..but yes, I fail and I continue to use it. Do I share my heart, soul, and deepest darkest secrets on it…..no way!!!

I woke this morning with a big fat UNFRIEND ME in Facebook.  Now, logically who the hell cares…..she isn’t worth it any way if she feels the need to even check that box but I was a upset.  Yes!  What the hell?  Why did it bother me, to be unfriend??  By someone I see a few times a year??

Part of me says screw it all (technology, I mean), did I really need to wake up with someone trying to -ucking play scrabble with me at 6am….what the hell could I spell at that hour, of any meaning?? Click to another screen, how much money is in the bank, oh okay. Weather??  Schedule for the day.

So, I continue about my day and feel sad for her that she feels the need to spend her time un-friending people online.  Did I make my choice, yes?  Did I know it would cause the “un-friending”? NO!

I had been with the “new” girlfriend the night before (unplanned), He was just not in love with her any more (now has a new friend) and now you unfriend me…..were we even friends in the first place or just friends in this cyber world that means nothing.  Yes, I can have very serious conversations through a text message…..does some of it get lost literally because of the gifts language brings to us-in the spoken word! Hell, yes….things can happen in the spoken word….words make things happen!

So, I actually see you outside of this “unfriend” me world and you no longer speak to me, I guess we aren’t friends any longer but by now…..sadly, I would say I am a veteran of being friends with six different couples who have gotten or are getting divorced.

So, I again, reexamine… were we even friends?? Did you become friends with me because of families or him? Or did I do that? Who Knows?  Who cares?

Snap Chat…..WTH, now I get a snap chat from you saying you are un-friending me, is that absolutely necessary when Facebook already tells me that….but go ahead introduce me to Snap Chat, that deletes our messages after a certain number of minutes…..why Snap Chat me that you don’t want to be my friend?? The only purpose I see– is if you are trying to hide some unsightly photo that you would never ever want to go public.

Now, ask me if I care if you unfriended me?  Go ahead, ask!! Well, I do because I am human and I do have a heart! It was the fact that instead of being a human and saying i’m done or screw you to my face……I saw it on a screen.  Is this what human contact has come too? Nothing face to face but screen to face?  Something is so wrong!!

A few days ago I forgot my phone quite frankly, I lost it and went to town willingly and it was so freeing, relaxing……like I was stranded on  beach with a bucket of ice cold beer and…… really, I was roaming the isles of Cash & Carry.

Other than a phone, what is this Apple good for?? Other than eating it or running it over with my car?? I am one friend short today and I guess I am okay with that.

But, I will keep my Apple!

Listen

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Addicted by Blake Shelton

Sometimes you get that call from that certain someone that makes your heart flutter-from your husband, wife, girlfriend, boyfriend, partner, etc.  Where you stop everything you are doing….flop down on the couch or sink down into the soft sheets on your bed….just to hear them breathe on the other end of the phone.  There are days when I would give anything for that but the craziness of life keeps that from happening.  I suppose I could give every excuse in the book but it is rare that any two people are on the same page at the exact same time.  Come on people, it doesn’t happen that way. It takes work…..lots of work. Even after the work, you might not get there!

I want to be so consumed by someone or by listening to their voice-that the melting ice from my glass on the table next to me, drips condensation down the sides and creates a tiny puddle and the glass’ base.  I want to feel them holding my hand, hugging me, and make me laugh.  One of my favorite things to do in this whole world is laugh! Sad to think, I am not really a funny person!

I hear with contentment and listen with my soul, I can put myself in the room they are in as they speak to me.  It seems so real but we are hundreds of miles away.  It is true in most relationships where love is involved, people  can relate to this in someway or another.

A Shout out to Teachers!!

I have been thinking a lot lately about teachers. I just signed up and am now enrolled for a week long writing workshop with my high school creative writing teacher…for me learning should never end.  Granted, you have a number of years to  be taught in a school setting.

It’s an empowering feeling that comes when you complete the task at hand, the report, the project, and for me at 39-I will never stop learning-Wether it be how to be a better writer, mom, wife, bookkeeper, photographer, I will never quit learning. I believe learning is important to all people at all ages.

I think about the things that people say about my father as a teacher.  He has been retired for a few years now but I still run into people who ask about him and share with me the wonderful stories of how he impacted their lives.  I actually had my dad as a teacher, years ago and I remember loving watching him (he always looked like he was so happy-elated really, to be a teacher) but I also remember him being very strict with me.  I understand why now because he wouldn’t show any special treatment with his own daughter but I remember thinking he was a great teacher!

Fast forward to today, I have two 12 yr old boys who each struggle in their own subjects and with different social situations. I lean on their teacher’s to tell me what is going on, to help me help them with homework, to let me know when they are having a bad day or a good day.  I expect them to move mountains for my children and they do!

I also believe some teachers see me walk down the hall and want to run like hell to their classrooms and lock the doors.  🙂 I can often become emotional about my children (after all, they are my kids and they deserve the best). Their growth in school is something I feel I need to be actively involved in because I have no control about what it is happening when they are in school.  Again, I rely on the teachers.  So, for any of you who have known me as a parent and you have had my child in your class, I am not crazy however, I am fighter for their education, I am also a fighter for you (teachers), if any teacher came to me about something they needed in their class, I would go out of my way to help them personally get it.  If they needed a voice, I would give mine.

Teachers, I need you to do your best and have the supplies you need to be the best teachers you can be! Down to my core, I believe that the teacher/parent relationship is so important.  So, to some of you, I am sorry if you ever had to pass me the box of Kleenex in your classroom. I am passionate about my children’s education and you deliver that to them!

We have been blessed to have some amazing teachers for our boys.  Teachers that go above and beyond, they embrace their roll as their educators, they do not give them the answers they work to help show them the way, these educators deserve more-every year we pack their classrooms with more and more students, less supplies, and less time for hands-on learning…..there is so much testing and standards that MUST be met.

I wonder, if we gave teachers the standards to meet for a year and didn’t have to worry about specific standardized tests–what would happen in those classrooms.  I believe those teachers would guide their students to fly….if they met the requirements set by the state but they were not limited by how they fulfilled those requirements.  Just think…what that would do for the teachers and most of all, for our students and children!? The entire classroom would light on fire with learning and ideas….minds asking questions and exploring new and different subjects that just don’t fit in to today’s curriculum.

Teachers are an incredible resource, they are a special kind of person. These people are rare! When you find a good one, try to figure out how you can keep them in your child’s life, so they develop a bond and the student will always know they can go there (to that teacher).  They will know and feel that that specific teacher will always have their back. They give and give without expecting anything in return.  We need them, more of the them, and it seems every year the number of actual teachers, we have, drops.

So, if you get the chance and see a teacher-your childhood teacher, or teacher’s you  have now, make sure to thank them and let me know how important they are to you and your world. I know I need to thank the teacher’s that help my boys’ every day. Without teachers, what would our children and future look like?

 

Give & Take

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Do you ever get to place in your life where you are no longer getting anything out of a relationship?

For example; where silences get longer on the phone, a strange awkwardness when you are together in the same room, or perhaps something has happened between two people that simply can’t be undone. For one person it is not repairable but the other just continues on as if nothing has happened. This friend goes about her business and when it is convenient, she will resurface in your life again.

Sometimes, what breaks my heart the most is the idea that someone expects me to do something because it is what they want, with no understanding, what so ever that it might not work for the other person? I know there are takers and givers in every situation….in any relationship there should be reciprocal giving and taking. There will be days when one is just not strong enough to give and days where one takes more than the other.  It is the middle ground and equilibrium where the relationship should be steadfast itself.  The relationship itself should be able to balance itself on the tip on a needle…one will be overcompensating for the other but will understand that someday the favor will be returned.  Generally, in strong relationships, I believe this to be true. It is what I strive to practice.

I have struggled and I have loved in all my relationships, no matter whether we are friends or lovers. I have said goodbye and hello to people who have left my life and tried to return to my life. I do not pass judgement on past or present. I welcome the idea of moving on but I don’t want the same flaws to show up in the same relationships.  Automatically, my mind goes to “not this again”.

I have been have been braving a new path since the new year, working on my own dreams and taking care of my ever-growing 12 year old twins. I am working on projects that I don’t need to share with anyone.  I feel blessed to lean on the people who are there for me.  Who generally want to know about me?

Comfort finds me surprised getting your unexpected messages. I never know when they will come but each one puts me at ease.