Dec 26, 2011

Tis The Season

According to The Artist I am now officially, "Dork mom"

It's been a while since I was able to sit down and post. The past two months have been a whirlwind. Starting with the November 22nd orthopedic surgery and subsequent Frankenfoot and ending with The Teenagers hospitalization after she plunged into respiratory distress last Monday, it seems like I haven't slept or sat down for ages. Throw in Christmas shopping, attempts at working for a living, school plays and vacation, housework, canning for the holidays etc., and I find myself in major need of a re-boot.

Thank God for organic coffee and wonderful friends.

Haggie Maggie and dork mom on Christmas Morning
BFF for 48 years

My dear friend Haggie Maggie was diagnosed with cancer recently and I spent as much time at the hospital with her as Frankenfoot would allow and once I was cleared to drive. I am amazed at how tough this woman is and how well she is doing. Radiation, chemo and radical surgery and she still keeps ticking. Strong enough to spend Christmas morning with the Pepper Posse which is a decades long tradition and in itself enough to bring the strongest person-alive to their knees.

*Please note the scarf from Island Rider in the above photo and note that it was also 80 degrees on Christmas morning. It keeps the air conditioning off of my neck and I love it!

The golden girl at Christmas

The Teenager has had a rocky December. When she aspirated at breakfast on December 7th it triggered a series of episodes which left her with left lower lobe pneumonia and a respiratory crash a week later that landed her in the hospital. The teenager has NEVER been in the hospital for an illness.

She loved the cable tv channel surfing, room service and spending the night with her big sister, The Genius who never left her side.

The Baby was a joy to watch at Christmas. She is the epitome of the Christmas spirit and truly loved every gift she was given. As Island Rider pointed out, however, The Baby is no longer a baby. I'm thinking we should have a contest to officially change her name.

I vote for Sassafras. Why? She has developed serious attitude which I suppose, is necessary for survival in this household.

The Boy is ...well...the Boy.

The Genius and The Boy.
Don't forget to brush your teeth before you burglarize the neighborhood, sweetie...

The Artist is here with The Boyfriend Every Mother In The Universe Would Love. I've stolen a recent photo of him taken by The Artist because I only managed to capture his foot on Christmas Day.

TBEMITUWL with Abby my grand-daugher

The Artist is spending a little extra time with us this year and I've loved having her here.

The Artist loves her brothers artwork which featured prominently in this years gift exchange

I am thankful for each and every one of my blogging buddies and am blessed to have met you! Praying you all have a wonderful holiday season and a healthy, happy and prosperous 2012.

Onward to a new year!

Dec 25, 2011

Merry Christmas 2011

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and a healthy and happy 2012.

Dec 10, 2011

Obla Di Obla Da

Photo form Google Images

This week will be my first week back to work. I spent a good portion of my time calling my clients yesterday. One in particular touched my heart. A lovely black family who lives in a rough area that used to be called "projects" but are no longer called "projects." I can't remember the proper terminology because my aspiration in life has never been to be politically correct.

The family has three huge bubba boys under the age of 6. Always immaculately dressed with heads shaved clean and ready smiles that blind. I always feel like I'm in the presence of little George Foreman's destined for greatness when I'm with this family.

"Bubba #3 has really missed you. Every white woman in Wal-Mart he sees we think he thinks it's you and he has a fit trying to get to them." Mom says.

I can't wait to hug my littlest Bubba who always runs to me and affectionately choke holds my carotid arteries for the first five minute of our visit.

Finally got the sutures removed this week and the foot was re-xrayed. The outside of the foot is still walking-deadish but the x-ray was fantastic. For the first time in too many years to count I have a "normal' foot. The doc did a magnificent job removing all of that excess bone. I look forward to not being in chronic pain. I look forward to wearing real shoes.

Since the swelling went down I demonstrated to the skeptical doc how I am able to move my toes side to side.

The doc was stunned. Silence. And then he spoke.

"If you ever figure out how you can use this talent in society please let me know."

The Boy has a solo in the school Christmas play. He can't remember the words but doesn't seem to care. He continues to keep me on my Frankenfoot...

"You snuck out and went across the street to Buddy's because you knew I was talking to Cindy on the phone. I was distracted and you took advantage me!"

"You were talking to your friend who died?"


"You were talking to your friend who died?"

Completely missing the point as always.

"How can I talk on the phone to a friend of mine who is dead?"

"Through a miracle."

Ah. Gotta love that child-like faith.

The Boy had his annual follow-up with Orthopedics. He will have surgery in May to replace the rod that is about to telescope up and out because of growth. It has served him well since it's insertion in 2002. I only hope it hangs in there unlike the other rod. His last femur fracture in 2008 was the stuff nightmares were made of with two surgeries in two weeks, significant pain and blood loss and a non-union of fracture and surgical osteotomy requiring a bone stimulator for over a year. He also re-broke the osteotomy at art camp during origami week but who's counting.

The Baby has mastered the Wii one-armed. She loves to sit and create Mii characters for hours on end. She has been weaned successfully off of the seizure medicine. The process took well over 6 months. Since this time she has begun to talk.

A lot.

The Teenager aspirated last week and we are fighting off the ill effects with inhalers and chest percussion. I have e-mailed the pediatrician requesting an appointment tomorrow. We will probably need a chest x-ray. I am praying she does not have pneumonia.

As I sit typing this entry, Frankenfoot elevated, I will I return to work tomorrow, take The Teenager to the pediatrician and then to the hospital for a chest x-ray while making it home by 2:10 to get The Baby off of the bus and then to The Boy's school to pick him up by 2:30pm? Never mind dinner, baths, homework, dishes....

Thank God music therapy at 4:30pm has been cancelled.

I realize my "vacation" has come to an end and I find my self humming...

Oh Bladi Oh Blah Da

My own form of music therapy.

Nov 29, 2011



This has been an interesting week. Fortunately, I don't remember much of it. Between the Morphine every 6 hours and the agonizing post surgical pain I believe I entered into a dissociative fugue state that left me with partial amnesia for events experienced during the fugue state time frame.

That's my theory anyway.

I remember the first night after surgery when the nerve block wore off about 10 hours too early. I was not prepared for the intense pain. Didn't I breeze through back surgery? Didn't I have abdominal surgery? Didn't I give birth to two children both of whom had complicated deliveries? Didn't I break this foot not once but three times recently?

Walks in the park compared to Frankenfoot.

On the morning after surgery I remember nausea overtaking me so suddenly that I projectile spewed all over the dining room table (yes, you heard me correctly), floor and kitchen cabinets since I could not run (let alone hobble) to the bathroom in time. Instantly, after I cleaned the barf up with bleach those familiar words came drifting down the stairs which I had not yet been able to even think about navigating...


I remember calling up to The Teenager asking if she made it to the potty this time?

"Sort of."

Uh oh.

I don't remember going up or down those stairs hauling bleach but I do remember cleaning up the "pooooooopie."

On day two after I had pressure washed my kitchen with puke I remember someone delivering a big Thanksgiving dinner to my door that my friend BJ had so carefully arranged for us to receive. Unfortunately, it was all frozen, including the turkey which also needed to be cooked. BJ was livid.

"That's what you get when you leave a man in charge," she fussed.

Before I knew it she was banging on my door with a huge pot roast, potatoes, carrots, gravy, rolls and a giant ham with pineapple rings decorating it and still fuming about the "damned frozen turkey."

Two days after the surgery was Thanksgiving day and I felt well but not well enough to go to dinner at Mama Mia Maria's. I was able to make breakfast and lunch for the kids.

Around dinner time, however, agonizing ankle pain overtook me and i was unable to weight bear.

At all.

The teenager was crying because she was hungry. After all it had been nearly four hours since lunch.

Dear Lord.

I popped a Morphine, 600mg of Motrin and walker-hopped to the stove and made grilled cheese sandwiches for Thanksgiving dinner.

Around 7 pm neighbors delivered a real Thanksgiving dinner to our door which we were all too tired and too full of cheese to eat.

And the ankle pain was relentless. I figured I had a blood clot until BDDW called me and told me he had had a revelation regarding the ankle pain.

'It's the boot. Take it off. Ice and elevate your ankle and try as much range of motion as you can tolerate."

Scuba diving anyone?

I so love it when I have friends who practice medicine on the side. BDDW was 100% correct. Within 24 hours I could walk again.

Today I got my gross dressing changed and my first glimpse of Frankenfoot. The doctor was not pleased with the boot induced ankle pain story especially when he saw the flipper boot that I had been given pre-operatively.

I left the office with a boot that actually fit my size 6 1/2 foot
and a nice, clean dressing.


In the past few days since I've been off the pain medicine and able to ambulate without agony I have passed the time by watching The Last Of The Mohicans, My Left Foot, Alice's Restaurant, The Constant Gardener, The Stand, and the first seasons of Storage Wars, Law and Order SVU and The Walking Dead.
Yes, the first seasons in their entirety.

I'm beginning to relate to the zombies who are referred to in The Walking Dead show as, "the walkers." Not only do I have a Frankenfoot that would qualify me for the job I am also brainless after three days of Netflix.

Next week sutures come out. In the meantime, the foot specialist instructed me to move my toe as much as possible. I told him I could already move it up and down but not side to side.

The doctor nearly fell off of his stool laughing.

"Toes don't move side to side," he howled.

"I beg to differ! I'm certain I could move my toes side to side!" I informed him.

"Bwahahahaha." The man is choking with laughter now.

"It's been so long since you've had any movement in that foot you can't even remember how toes are supposed to move," he informs me.

Yeah well...I bet my zombie friends can move their toes from side to side.

Those who have toes, that is.

Nov 19, 2011

Daniel Boone Alive And Well In Florida

For those of us in the Tampa Bay and Miami areas of Florida we have a tendency to forget that we are, after all, still in the deep south.

Daniel Boone reminded me of this today.

Nov 17, 2011

Baby Sings The Blues

One of my neighbors who no one seems to know but me knocked on my door recently and asked If I would like their Play Station Rock Band. Her son has grown and moved away and no longer wanted it.


The Boy had received a Play Station from a friend years ago and it finally passed away this year. We've have no money to replace it so he's been without for quite some time.This week Curly T hooked up a few things for us and last night we were in Rock Band business.

I sat mesmerized for 2 hours watching The Boy drumming and The Baby singing.
And even though it was horrifyingly loud and The Baby sounded like a cross between Aretha Franklin and a screaming Janis Joplin I couldn't help but be fascinated by her facial expressions. This child puts her heart and soul into music.

Since she was a 5lb infant she has been fascinated by all music which she simply calls "song."

Her favorite seems to be Nina Simone and she will sit and demand I replay Nina Simone videos over and over for her.

d is it just me or is there a resemblance?

Move over Nina. This Baby can sing the blues.

Nov 16, 2011

"... we do not take a trip, a trip takes us."

If there is one thing I've learned while being the mom of three special needs children it is that making plans for the future is as absurd as a staunch Republican at a MoveOn meeting.

Take this week for instance.

Iris/Virus is on a cruise. I can't remember exactly who is on the cruise with her besides The Beard (see Bio's) and a pack of metal bands who's names elude me. Being of the Jimi Hendrix/Led Zeppelin era I wouldn't know a Whitesnake from a Metallica.

So since I have no personal care assistant for The Teenager I had to take off of work this week. You know? The job with no benefits such as insurance coverage, sick time, vacation time, gas reimbursement, etc.

Yes, the older I get the more backwards my employment river seems to flow.

Then I found out I have to have surgery and the doctor wants me off work for at least 4 weeks. Home for the holidays only sounds charming in the movies.

Sing it Perry

Home for the holidays in the real world means no paycheck at Thanksgiving and Christmas.

I'm hoping my recovery is swift and that I can return sooner than later to work. After all, I can't shake that feeling that I am safer at work than I am locked in this house with the three musketeers.

In the meantime this week was to have been a week to have fun with The Teenager and prepare for the surgery/holidays by getting as much done as humanly possible. Yesterday was a perfect example of why plans do not work well in my world.

After the pediatrician finished chewing me out for taking The Baby to the Emergency room after the face plant we scheduled a follow up appointment for a face plant re-check and flu vaccines for The Baby and The Boy. Unfortunately, the morning of the appointment The Teenager began vomiting.

When the Teenager vomits she stands firmly rooted to her current spot and simply let's the barf spill up and over. It doesn't matter if she is on her new purple carpet, sitting on the living room sofa, or in the middle of a department store. She barfs where she stands. And then she stick her fingers down her throat and barfs some more. And then she walks in it.

One hour before the pediatricians appointment clear across town I am mucking in the midst of the Woodstock of vomit festivals.

Obviously not able to drag the poor girl to the pediatricians office with us I searched frantically for a teensitter. My entire backup posse was either at work or ill themselves so I did something I've never done before. I called my 92 year old father and Pearl Harbor survivor, Popi, and asked him to teensit.

I'm sure you are all under the assumption that i hesitated because Popi is 92 soon to be 93. After all, we are all guilty of making assumptions regarding age and aging.

FYI: The man is in better shape than I am and only this year have I noticed him slowing down a little. By slowing down I mean he has slightly limited his tree climbing, brick laying, building and painting projects.

FYI: I hesitated because he is a hideous babysitter. This I've learned from my own child hood as a rather sickly child who missed a lot of school. Since my parents both worked he was occasionally left in charge of me.

I was lucky to get a sip of water or a baby aspirin out of the man during his 8 hour shift.

Popi and The Boy taking a break.

When I returned from the pediatricians Popi was out back sweeping the patio he constructed. In his defense the man did leave the sliding glass doors open while sweeping. I'm not sure why since the air conditioner was blasting and the man is as deaf as a tree stump from destroyer depth charges that exploded around his submarine during multiple World War 2 battles. The important thing was that the man made an effort to pretend he was observing The Teenager.

And when I returned home I was barely in the door when i heard those familiar words, "uh oh! I have diarrhea," wafting from up stairs along with a distinct odor. And did she ever.

Walls. Clothing. Floor. Rugs.


Today hasn't gone much better, actually. The Boy is home for the second day in a row. He was not given the flu shot yesterday because, as it turns out, he was wheezing. Who would have known? He tells me nothing and shows no visible signs of illness. Am I supposed to be psychic? And let me just say that knowing what tomorrow would bring is about the last thing on my Christmas wish list. I'd probably die of fright.

Although projects have been altered this week to accommodate the usual insanity all has not been lost. I managed to get our 3 Christmas trees up and Friday night Curly T and I are planning a booze jam marathon.

Uh oh, did I say, planning? Perhaps I should rephrase that...

My favorite author of all times sums it up more succinctly than I ever could since I'm prone to run on sentences and flight of ideas:

A journey is a person in itself; no two are alike. And all plans, safeguards, policing, and coercion are fruitless. We find that after years of struggle that we do not take a trip; a trip takes us. John Steinbeck

Thanks for the reminder, John. If you were here now I'd propose a toast to your wisdom with booze jam. Or at least give you a piece of toast with booze jam on it.

Nov 11, 2011

Face Plant

Photo Google Images

A man walks in to a bar. Stop me if you've heard this one...

I love
the blog A Moon Worn As If It Had Been A Shell. I can't remember how I even stumbled upon it but have been an avid follower for a while now. A prolific poster and gifted writer and poet, Elizabeth has a feature she calls, How We Do It where she shares happenings of daily life which I should point out rarely happens to anyone else in daily life. Not only does it crack me up but it makes me feel soooo much better about my own life.

I thought of Elizabeth yesterday when The Baby did a face plant in her wheel chair on the ceramic tile floor.

As Montell Jordan said, "This is how we do it."

Here is the abbreviated version of our week
in the nuthouse in a nutshell:

The morning starts when The Teenager walks down the stairs stating, " I know how it's done. Moses was NOT a slave. The people
had to work."

No. I have no clue.

While she is bathing I run into the downstairs bathroom in a panic.

"Let me guess," she states. "You have to pee like a racehorse?"

I have a doctors appointment. Iris/Virus asks me twice, "who has the apportionment?" It suddenly dawns on her I have an appointment. She is stunned into silence primarily because I never have an appointment. I don't have time. Why I can't even remember my last pap smear. Was it this decade?

I go see my Thursday morning clients and then to the doctor.

He schedules surgery on my foot on November 22nd. I say happy Thanksgiving to me as this is the perfect excuse to eat more pie and stuffing which will aid in my recuperation. The foot is pretty terrible so I already knew I'd probably end up sliced and diced if I actually sought medical attention. What I didn't know is that it is also broken with a nice piece of bone poking around in there. Doesn't it hurt?


Does it slow me down? No.

Fortunately, I have the pain tolerance of a yeti which all family members have except The Genius and The Teenager who I suspect may be the more normal members of the Yeti clan.

The Family

I get The Baby off the bus and the driver tells me I need to wash her hair because she is itching. I am highly offend and use all the self control I can muster not to smack this idiot into the gutter. The Baby has some pretty serious hormonal issues from the extensive neurological damage she sustained after being squeezed out of the birth canal on a hallway floor and then left for dead. This includes facial and scalp acne and some pretty potent adult sized body odor. Do I really need to explain this to the bus driver?

I make a mental note to speak with The Baby's teacher as now, in my paranoia, I am thinking they are discussing our personal hygiene behind my back.

I then go to Elizabeth's blog and read the note from her daughters teacher.

"please try to send Sophie in with a proper coat since it's freezing out and we want to take her for a walk."

I like the comment from Birdie regarding the coat:

Do these teachers not take courses in communication?

"Please try to send Sophie in with a proper coat since it's freezing out and we want to take her for a walk."

How about,

"We are really looking forward to taking Sophie for a walk. It is getting cold and the leaves are beautiful! Sophie looked so warm and cozy today but could you send her coat along tomorrow just in case the temperature drops?"

If only sweet Birdie were our children's teacher! Because it doesn't end there.

I call a friend to discuss my hair humiliation and she informs me she had just received a nasty call from the school demanding she cut her autistic child's nails. One nail takes approximately an hour and creates a tremendous meltdown.

She suggests the teacher cut the nails herself.

And yet a third friend who just returned from a meeting with the middle school principal after a teacher told her daughter in front of the entire classroom, "Yes, you may go to the bathroom as I talked to your mother and she told me you have already wet yourself twice."

Bad enough to be humiliated in front of the peers when you are 13 but also lied to? The teacher never spoke with her mom.

Welcome to public schools where many of the employees received their sensitivity training from culturally corrosive comedy acts like Carlin and the school bus drivers moonlight as Endocrinologists.

Then the face plant occurs. The Teenager pushes The Baby's wheel chair in to the living room but The Baby slams on the brakes. The Teenager shoves and The Baby tips forward and lands face down, buckled in, on the ceramic tile, with the wheel chair on top of her. The Baby, who never cries, is hysterical clutching her head. I become hysterical. The Teenager becomes hysterical.

We are all hysterical.

And the weather is beautiful and all the windows are open. I expect the police to arrive at any moment.

I drop The Teenager off at the nail place where Iris/Virus is having her nails done and The Teenager walks in to the nail place and melts down as only The Teenager can do. Two black woman are glaring at me. The entire nail salon is upset, thinking I am an abusive white foster mother who has terrified this poor black child. Iris/Virus calms The Teenager down and the Vietnamese employees throw her in a massage chair which lulls her into compliance. I expect the police to arrive at any moment.

I rush Face Plant to the ER where she checks out fine and we are sent home in record time. The ER doctor hands me her phone as we are leaving informing me our pediatrician wants to speak with me. The pediatrician informs me I am not to go to the ER without calling her first unless it is life or death because of Medipass.


I tell the pediatrician I've dealt with Medipass for 18 years with dozens of foster kids and have never been questioned once since it is not an HMO.

As usual, I get no where. I expect the Medipass police to arrive at any moment.

I pick up The Boy from Mrs. M's who simply picked him up from school without any explanation on my part other than my hysterical slobbering and screeching over the phone. I then drive to retrieve the Teenager from Iris. The Teenager begins to melt down again while walking to the car.

Mental note: Make appointment with the neurologist regarding the outbursts which have become worse with the onset of Epilepsy.

We make it home. I arrive to discover that my adult neighbor across the street has confiscated The Boy's go-kart from my garage and is allowing every kid in the neighborhood to speed up and down the busy street between cars. Without helmets or parental permission.

Law suit anyone?

I march over to the neighbor and informs him it is now HIS go-kart as I will not be sued when someone cracks their head open or worse.

Bye Bye Go-Kart

This morning Mama Mia Maria and I were going to hang out, have lunch and go fabric shopping. By ourselves. I've been looking forward to this for two weeks.

Instead I had to keep The Baby home from school since she was awake, blabbering total nonsense and singing from 1 am to 5 am non-stop. Concussion anyone?

Nonsensical blabbering is fairly common in our home but generally it's origin is me. And a darned good thing I kept her home to observe her closely as The Baby had explosive diarrhea down to her ankles and up to h
er neck requiring a change of clothing before I could walk out of the front door to pick up Mama Mia Maria.


In my paranoid state I am certain the school would blame the diarrhea on me as well.

Hours later I still can't get the smell of poo out of my nose. comrade...this is how we do it.

Nov 1, 2011

Osama. Obama. Fi. Fi. Fo. Mama.

Yesterday we were officially approved for Social Security disability!

Today we were officially approved for Social Security disability!

Yes. We are still the recipients of duplicate mailings. Ironically, not the recipients of duplicate checks.

No more R-o-s-e that spells G-r-a-c-e because they actually got the middle name correct!

No more Osama or Obama because they actually got the last name correct!

One teesny issue...

They spelled her first name incorrectly and in doing so her Medicaid was also changed to the incorrect first name.

Ever dealt with Medicaid? If not, let's just say that it is easier to elicit the current weather forecast from a local zoos lemur population than to find intelligent and efficient life forms in your local Medicaid office.

I need to rest up for this next battle. Perhaps a cruise first?

Anyone care to join me?

Oct 28, 2011

Crazy Busy Week

Beauty and The Beast

Four or five new referrals at work in a week. I lost count. Three month evaluations. Re-evaluations. Reams of paper work in a job i was told only had two forms to fill out.

And I believed that!

All day training today learning to administer and score the Battelle Developmental Inventory 2nd Edition (BDI-2). Did I sign up for this?

The Boy's school dance tonight. Spent a fortune at the Army/Navy Store on The Boy.

I love the smell of napalm in the morning

but lucked out with The Baby's thrift store cheerleader outfit. Yes, she kept the wig on all night. The girl loves all things hair, nails and clothing.

The Baby gets "tp'd" by Thomas's classmates

Unable to find The Teenagers angel costume for the dance but she didn't seem to mind tonight. Being allowed to "tp" friends and family members AND dance made it all worth while. Not to mention the pounds of candy she thought I didn't see her ingest.

The Teenager in her tied dye shirt tp-ing a friend.

I'm looking forward to a rainy weekend and a rest!

Oct 22, 2011

If We Could Just Put Mona In a 57' Chevy....

This week was the first time in 11 1/2 years that The Boy was able to complete his Pamidronate infusion in two days and not three days. I know that may not seem like a milestone to you but to me it is heaven on earth.

After infusion we had a few minutes before The Baby got off of the school bus so we zipped in to a couple of antique stores because I've come up with another
lamebrain creative idea I wanted to pursue. The Boy mostly drove me insane zipping ahead of me brushing precariously close to breakables.

"Are there toys here?" One of his favorite questions.

At one point he disappeared into an adjoining room and I heard him exclaim:

"Her again! I see that women everywhere I go!"

I was a little surprised when I saw the painting that he could not remember who Mona Lisa was as he has the most magnificent art teacher in the history of art teachers and has had more than one encounter with Mona. I took it upon my self to do a spontaneous exhortation regarding Mona and her smile and Leonardo's absolute genius.

To The Boy, who is an auditory learner, my speech sounded exactly like this:

blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah

On the way home as we're driving down the interstate he lets out a huge, happy yelp.

"Look on your right! On your right! On your right!"

"I mean your left! Your left! Your left!"

Wasn't Leonardo dyslexic as well?

I mustered as much enthusiasm as I could and commented positively on the vintage car he was so thrilled with on the left right left. I wondered out loud what it was?

"That's a 1957 Chevy Bel Air."


"How do you know that?" I inquired.

"I know my cars, " he replied.

Move over Mona.

Oct 17, 2011

Two Hurdles Down

Today at 3:30pm the man arrived from the wheel chair company and installed The Baby's one-armed drive. It normally takes him 45 minutes but he had a "few problems" so he was with us for 2 hours and 15 minutes.

Now there's a surprise!

Also today I received two letters from Social Security. They both said exactly the same thing because from the moment I filled out "the application which wasn't an application" on line they have been sending me duplicate mailings of everything.

The letters, however were both addressed to The Teenagers adoptive name.

What a pip!

More hurdles? Bring them on.

Onward and over! Here I go!

Oct 16, 2011

What A Difference A Decade Makes

It occurs to me yesterday as I spent 5 hours cleaning the foulness out of the inside of my mini van just how much my life has changed since adoption. Prior to 2000 I used to own the above sporty, red car. Oh, how I loved and pampered that baby! The auto detailer came to my office every other month to tweak it's perfection.

I will admit I got a few speeding tickets motoring in this baby.

Only because it was red.

Now I own this:

I had to trade in my red baby for more cargo space. I needed room for 1 to 3 car seats, a couple of wheel chairs and a few strollers at one time. I had to order one with a bench seat in the middle to accommodate The Boy when he looked like this:

Which was every six months or so although I admit that even when he was able to bend at the waste I could barely squeeze him into the red car.

As I cleaned the purple crayons out of the sliding door tracks, the Pediasure off of the ceiling liner and scraped the melted gummy bears out of the seat belt buckles with a bread knife I couldn't help but ponder how my life has changed in a decade.

Now the only thing I get stopped for in my white mini van is expired auto tags because I'm too busy to remember my own birthday.

I used to look like this:

Me and my buddy, Tim. RIP sweet friend.

Now I look like this:

Wendell Berry said, " The past is our definition. We may strive, with good reason, to escape it, or to escape what is bad in it, but we will escape it only by adding something better to it."

Somewhere between mourning the loss of my red car and burrowing through the petrified forest of dead nuggets and french fries two things occurred to me.

First thing being that I've added something much better to my life during the past decade.

Second thing being that I'm going to offer my neighbor across the street twenty bucks to finish the outside of the mini van.

Oct 14, 2011

"Kick Em' In The Junk Bonds " 30 AD Style

The story of the money changers being driven out of the temple occurs in all four of the gospels of the New Testament. It is the only accounting of Jesus ever using any type of physical force in the entire Gospels combined. John seems to allude to the fact that he whipped their greedy butts more than once since scholars believe John mentioned more than one Passover in his documentation.

In doing so Jesus publicly challenged the authorities of thieving and taking advantage of the poor. The authorities in 30 AD who were no different than the international bankers of 2011. The authorities who set up shop with the blessing of the political leaders of their time. The authorities who forced exchange rates that only benefited the wealthy. The authorities who exploited the poor.

Sound Familiar?

Google Images

People even The Lamb of God knew enough about the destructive consequences of usury to stage a public protest.

Just my opinion.

Oct 13, 2011

Social Security Disability. Yes. Again.

It occurs to me as I travel home from the fax machine at Office Depot that I only share the tip of the family iceberg with my blog friends and followers.

Yes. The tip.

Many of you may find that hard to believe since our experiences are often so bizarre and overwhelmingly complicated that you could not imagine any more excitement being packed into our daily lives.

I don't have the mental or physical energy to blog about what's under the tip of the iceberg but when it comes to The Teenagers Adventures in Social Security Land I think every detail SHOULD be documented don't you?

When I arrived home today from the grocery store I had a voice mail message.

The message was addressed to the mother of (insert The Teenagers birth name) informing me that The Teenager needed an IQ and Achievement test which they would pay for but they needed to make sure that I would be bringing her for the testing. Never once did she state who "they" were or leave her actual name on the message.

And yes, just to be absolutely fair I just went in and re-listened to the message and no she never mentioned her name or the name of the agency she represented. She did miraculously leave a phone number which I suppose I should be thankful for.

I phoned the 1-800 number reaching a very pleasant lady who turned out to be from the Florida Disability Determination Office. That's three people I've dealt with who can't remember the correct name of the client they are working with but are as sweet as canned pineapple in heavy syrup. I'm beginning to suspect Prozac in the water cooler.

I asked why she was referring to The Teenager using her birth name which has not been her legal name since 1996.

"Oh, you will have to take that up with the Social Security office and have them change it."

Wrong answer.

I informed her I had taken it up with the Social Security office in 1996 and was in possession of a social security card and birth certificate with the correct name on it.

"Oh. It doesn't matter as long as I have the correct address."

"No, it does matter. It matters to me. It matters because The Teenager was adopted in 1996 and legally you should have no knowledge of her birth name as it does not exist. What you are doing is not legal. In other words you are telling me it would be ok for me to apply for SSI for my daughter under the name Elvis Presley even though that is not her legal name just as long as I used this address? Perhaps Elvis Presley is not a good example since he's dead and all. Let's say I apply for Social Security using the name Barack Husain Obama? It's ok just as long as I use this address even though that is not her legal name?"

"I'm changing it in the computer now!" she trills. "The reason I'm calling is that we need an IQ test on the Teenager and we will, of course pay for it!"

"She had one in July of 2011."


"Yes, I brought the copy in to the Social Security Office."

"I don't have that..."

"Really? Why I'm totally shocked," I gasped.

I wanted to tell her that I forked $320.00 out of pocket for the IQ test because I think any psychologist who contracts with the agency for disability determinations is a nit wit who probably couldn't even get a job in a Filipino call center let alone a job as a real psychologist.

Instead, I told her I'd be happy to fax her the report I already turned in to J-O-H-N-N-Y in September.

"That would be wonderful," she tra la la'd

I think I could hear the bubbling of the water cooler in the background.

So I fax'd the $320.00 four page report stating The Teenager's IQ is 46. It cost me $6.00 and gas to Office Depot which ticked me off more than anything. After all, I am on a very strict budget and I wish these people would stop wiping their rear ends with my daughters medical records.

"It's ok to use my name! Just be sure to use the following address...Social Security Disability for everyone!"

Perhaps Obama should use my address in his next campaign and offer free SSI for anyone residing with me. He could modify his last campaign slogan just a tad.

It's about time!
It's about change!
Bogus name?
OK with Husain!

It would certainly do wonders for his popularity.

Oct 12, 2011

It's Official. The World Has Gone Completely Mad.

Amish Arrested!

Seriously? The Amish attacking other Amish with scissors and battery powered hair clippers? Didn't their mothers ever teach them not to run with break and enter with scissors?

And assault with a battery powered hair clipper? Assault aside, are the Amish even allowed to use batteries? Just asking.

Is it me or do the above perps really look Amish to you?

Allegedly, one has had a previous brush with law enforcement for sexual contact with a minor. Care to guess which one by looking at their mug shots? I find it difficult to decide since they all look like Charles Manson wannabe's. And don't let that bowl cut on the right fool you. He's probably snortin' crushed Vicodin behind the haystack before he sets it on fire morphing old MacDonald has a farm into the MacDonald Triad.

I don't mean to be critical but while we're on the subject nothing says kissin cousins like the photos above either. The fact that 17 out of the 18 involved hair trimming, beard snatching families are "related" comes as no surprise when you look at those mug shots. Can first cousins marry in Ohio? How about siblings?

"Rachel called, Josiah. She told us to bolt the barn door and charge up the taser. We need to throw down them gangbanger foo's before they clip us tonight."

And what about these eight arrested in Kentucky for failure to affix those bright orange triangles to the back of their horse drawn buggy's because they violate their modesty codes. I know. I agree. Orange is for inmates and hookers...

but guys! What about those hairdos? Are perky flips modest? Really?

You want to talk perky flip? Look at me in 8th grade.

I don't know why this whole Amish thing has done me in today. Maybe it's because I'm always threatening to run away and become Amish. Maybe it's because I think they have the most wonderful, healthy life styles.

Maybe it's because if you can't trust the Amish not to scalp you who can you trust?