Thursday, January 26, 2012

Alive and well and smiling

You hate me, don't you? I'm so sorry for not posting for so very long! Life. Life got in the way of retelling life here.

And then the lives of others, whose stories I can't share because they are not mine, took over my life. Or I let them take over. Welcomed them as a matter of fact. Pursued them even, if can imagine that.

But it wasn't you. And it wasn't this forum. I took the entire month of January off from the other place that I blog at every week; one week off at the place that pays me to tell tales. See? Not you.

But I will be back soon, oh, very soon, to share some more tales. I promise. Ok, I feel bad for neglecting things over here. ONE short tale:

This is me. I'm going to church. I almost didn't go that day, but decided that was the wrong message to send to my kids. So I fluffed my hair, donned my pearls and contemplated, but did not decide upon, a lowcut top.

Contemplating lower cut top

I was healthy, awoke in plenty of time, and really had no good reason to miss church, so why did I not want to go? Because, apparently, menopause is the new adolescence. My face had decided to head in the Way Back Machine to age 13. I had a breakout like I have not seen since I would smudge my Leif Garrett posters with Lip Smackers each night.
Look at the chin! I have the chin of a teenager!

"I'm not going to church today." I announced at breakfast.

"Why not?" Brian asked.

"If she's not going, I'm not going, I'll keep her company," Bekah offered oh. so. generously.

"Because, I uh..." I looked at the faces of my kids, faces that would probably face a similar situation in the not so distant future," ugh, I'm going. But not one crack about having a third eye!"

So I went. Concealer as in place as it was going to be, head held high, as many distracting techniques as I could come up with (although it was a communion Sunday, and I don't like wearing anything that might accidentally give the elders serving an eye full as I bowed before the alter so the top was not low cut.)

I have age 50 right ahead of me and I'm trying to conceal pimples. It's just wrong. 

I have to point them out, don't I? Oh, you can see some, even caked with concealer they are hardly concealed.

Sorry about that. In person, they  really were quite obvious. I caught people looking at my chin all morning, and it wasn't my imagination either. The blemishes were there, but I couldn't let a hormonal outbreak stop me from going places, doing things that are important to me. I couldn't let something so superficial hold me back.  What would be the point in that?  There really wasn't anything I could do but smile.

Which is probably a really great life lesson on several levels, don't you think?

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Because every Saturday should begin with a police report, duct tape and Press 'N Seal wrap?

Happy 2012! (a number I keep repeating because I'm  determined to write the correct year before March!)

The last day of our 2011 began at 2:30 AM. That is when Brian and I woke to a loud KEEEEERASH!

In that moment between sweet slumber and waking terror - the moment of shattered dreams- I thought an M80 had gone off outside the window. Brian thought it had been someone crashing through the glass of our backdoor.

He guessed better.

It was Noah's bedroom window to be exact.

I have a confession-- falling asleep in Noah's bed after prayers, and mid 6 year-old pillow talk is something that I frequently do. I was sleeping there when the window broke- mere inches from the glass shards, Noah was on the side away from the window.

When I peered out the unshattered portion,  there was no culprit to be seen. But on the lawn was a ball that had not been there when we went to bed. It didn't belong to my kids, either.

I should back up just a bit.  Our neighborhood is very active at night. We have had a long history of late night ding dong ditching. So have most of our neighbors. It's just a fact of subdivision life. Even the hooligans who decided that they didn't like the conventional style of our light up reindeer and rearranged them one late night was annoying. (But it was sorta funny.)

You giggled. It's ok, so did I

But a middle of the night breaking of windows? That's criminal.

"Clean up this room, it looks like a crime scene in here!" I told Noah first thing in the morning.

" It IS a crime scene!" Luke countered.

"Yeah, but the police don't have to see what slobs we are!" I said as they headed to tidy and I called the sheriff's office.

The officer arrived quickly (He had a name that screamed for commentary, but I resisted. Really, the guy probably hears crap about his name all the time and someone with Vollenweider as a last name probably shouldn't be mocking other people's last names, anyway). He took pictures, recorded my story and asked me to call if I figured out who did it.

The town I live in is small. One of the downsides of small town life is that everyone knows your business. One of the upsides of small town life is that you can very easily find out any one else's business.

It didn't take long.

"Hey!" I said when my neighbor Christy came to her door, "do you recognize this ball?" I tossed it in the air like the jock I wish I was.

"Yeah, I was looking for that, it's my kid's."

"It came through Noah's window last night."

"Never saw it before."

This was not our first detective case. A year of so ago, Christy and I broke the case of " what happened to the full bag of security guard gear that was taken from an unlocked truck?" We found the physical evidence in her shrubs, and figured out the timeline based on the activity of her dog the night before. We resisted the urge to make commentary about the wisdom of leaving such items in an unlocked car...well, at least to the police officer who came to collect our findings.

For the Case of  Shattered Dreams, we headed off to another neighbor's house channeling our inner Cagney and Lacy. Only, you know, no firearms...or badges, simply armed with our combined knowledge of human nature and our degrees from the School of TV Cop Shows.

Within 20 minutes, we had answers.

We know who did it.

We have witnesses.

How it all plays out is up to the kid's parents.

And because I like to inform of handy things you may not know:

This is not my first Ball v. Window episode. I have boys...and a husband. If you need to board up a broken window (because it breaks on a holiday and the glass company can't come out for 4 days without paying extra), reach for the Press 'n Seal wrap. This time I added a layer of Reynolds pan liner ( the one with aluminum foil on one side, parchment paper on the other) and sealed it all up with duct tape. Very cold resistant, and the glass sticks to the Press 'N Seal wrap and doesn't fall on the floor.
Recipe for repair: Press n' seal, Pan Liner paper, 2nd Press 'n Seal layer, duct tape

Done. And classy.

And that is how my Saturday began, and 2011 ended,  with a police report, duct tape and Press 'N Seal Wrap.

***UPDATE*** The parents did the right thing. There are good people in this world who do things that aren't comfortable to try and  teach their kids to right thing. I applaud them. Nicely done, Parents!