Life lessons from a little boy

As a teenager it was an unwritten rule that I act as bad ass and emotionless around my family as much as possible.  Looking back on it now I have no idea why I was like that but at that time  I had legitimate reasons for everything that I did.  I was in a constant battle with my mother over the boy that I swore was my soulmate and would stop at nothing to prove to everyone that we belonged together.  That resulted in almost nightly arguments with my mother who hated him with every breath in her body.  My sister and her two little boys had moved in with my mom and I so they were unfortunately subjected to my stubborn teenage attitude and my regular screaming matches with mom.  Usually after mom and I were done yelling I would retreat to my room, slam the door and turn up my music real loud (yep, I’m sure that showed her, huh?)  one day after a particular loud argument I went into my room, slammed my door and plopped down on my bed. Then, I heard a few taps on my door.

then a few more……..

 

“Aunt Stacey? Can I come in?”

 

my little five year old nephew Brian was standing at my door with his lips pressed between the crack of the door and the frame. Tapping his fingers rhythm style while he asked again

 

“Can I please come in?”

 

I opened the door and he looked up at me with a smile.   I had laid down the law early on when my sister moved in with the boys that they were to ask before coming in my room.   As if my room held the legendary chamber of secrets,  it was still my safe haven and whatever privacy I had at home I intended on keeping in tact.

 

“Yeah,  come in”

As he walked in I closed the door (loudly) behind him, making my point to whoever else was in the house that I was still upset.   He  sat down on the edge of my bed and looked around.   I know he didn’t have any clue what I was upset about or what was going on, he just knew that tensions were  high in our homestead and he wanted to lighten the mood.   That day  I know I must have vented to him at least a dozen teenage angst’y issues and I know he didn’t really understand a word of what I was talking about.   Still,  he sat there patiently and listened as if he did.   Even if he didn’t say a word during my entire rant it didn’t  matter,  it still helped because he was there, and he cared enough to listen.   After that we would ‘hang out’ pretty regularly when I was home,  even if it was to hide in my room and listen to music.   It made it easier to be home when my sister and the kids were home,  especially as the tension between my mother and I worsened the older (and more emotionally dependent) I became to my ex boyfriend.

One particularly awful weekend I had been sick off and on for the past few days and started worrying that I may be pregnant.  The last thing I wanted to do was tell my mom so I kept it to myself for the time being until I was sure.  That Monday I skipped school and went to the health department down the street and took a pregnancy test.  It came back positive.  When I told my ex that I was pregnant he said he was elated but warned me that if anything ever happened to him that his family would make sure that the baby was raised by THEM and not me.  (** more on this subject will be explained in another entry..  it’s just too much to go into right now!**)  I kept the ‘big news’ from my mother for a few days until one night when I didn’t come home from school and instead had gone out with the boyfriend and went to one of his father’s employees’  homes.   His dad was one of the ‘top bosses’  (or so he kept telling me,  who knows if it was even true)  and I noticed that a  small group of people that worked for his dad enjoyed ‘sucking up’ to the boss’s son.  Chris would bring me along to their house (which only was a few blocks from mine) on nights they played board and roleplaying games such as Dungeons and Dragons.   Despite the fact that they were all at least twice our age,  they were all really nice people and I enjoyed visiting with them.    My mother, on the other hand was furious. In her mind they must have been mentally unstable sickos to allow two teenagers to go to their house.   One night we were at their house and my mother comes knocking on their front door.   I have no idea how she found out where we were but just seeing her standing on that porch with that enraged look on her face made me want to crawl into a little hole and die….   That night when I came home it was on between my mom and I!   Not only had she embarrassed me but she made an ass out of herself acting the way she did to people she didn’t even know!     As we argued my nephew came out of his room and stood quietly in the hallway.   I know he hated to hear us fight and deep down I hated for him to witness anything like this, ever.

“Stacey! I’ve had it with your SHIT!”

 

“You are going to be a LOSER just like he is! You are throwing your life away!”

 

“He is never allowed in this house,  ever again!”

 

That last thing she said sent me over the edge!    I remember my eyes welling up with tears and sucking in a huge breath of air as I blurted out

 

“Well then you’ll never see your grandchildren!!!!”

 

The silence was deafening after that.   My mom sat there and looked at me,  speechless with her mouth open.    I had no idea what she was going to yell next… but she didn’t yell,   she spoke softly.

 

“So, that’s how it’s going to be… you’re pregnant now…”

 

Out of the corner of my eye I noticed Brian had vanished from the shadows of the hallway where he had been standing and listening to us this whole time.  I imagined him running into his room, jumping into his bed and hiding underneath the covers to prepare himself for what could only be described as “Mom-ageddon”

 

“YES!  I’m pregnant!   and I feel sick,  and I don’t need this stress!   and I hate YOU! and I hate that you hate Chris because I love him and I am going to marry him!”    I was so mad I could feel my cheeks flush,  and my stomach wanted to throw up.   I knew the neighbors could probably hear me yelling and at that moment I didn’t care.  In my eyes my whole life was crumbling down because nobody understood me.   My mom just sat there and shook her head slowly, burying her face into her hands.  I can only imagine now what she was thinking…   her stupid daughter, and that jerk boyfriend of hers just got themselves into one of the biggest messes of all.    She started ranting on about how I would never go to college now and never have a career.  All of these things that in her eyes had been within grasping distance of me had all been yanked away forever because now I was going to be a teen mom.   She couldn’t even factor consider any of Chris’s family into this situation as being any form of help either.. my mom didn’t like Chris’s father and she thought his mother was a delusional wackjob.   I could tell the gears in my mother’s head were spinning trying to figure out how to even start to comprehend what was going to happen next.   I know she had toyed with the idea of tossing me out of the house more than a few times.   A couple years before all of this  I had abruptly left the house to go live with my father and his new wife for a short time,  but that hadn’t worked out very well.   Back when my step mom and I didn’t get along at ALL.  I was still in the mindset that my mom and dad belonged together and the best thing for both of them was to get back together.   In my mind Donna was just a homewrecker and us living under the same roof was, in her words “a living hell”.   Anyways,  after that short time I had moved out I think my mom had an easier time accepting me getting out to learn life on my own.  Lord knows I wasn’t listening to her!

Just then I felt a gentle tap on my arm.    Little Brian was standing next to me with one of his backpacks over his shoulder  that he used for school.  He had some items stuffed into it,  books, etc.   Tucked underneath his arm was a stuffed toy rabbit that I knew was one of his favorite.   It was a white rabbit with longish springy ears.   Brian used to tell me that this toy was especially special because it had ‘caught his very first tears”.

 

“Grandma?   Aunt Stacey?”

 

I was in no mood for anything else,  and that bitchy, nasty, stone faced teenager once again surfaced in me.  I had never lashed out at my little nephew before .. until now.    He reached up to tap my arm again and I jerked away from him,  even startling myself that I had done it.  I looked down at him and  heaved in a huge annoyed sigh.

“WHAT DO YOU WANT??”   He jumped a bit when I snapped at him but still held tightly onto his backpack and that bunny.  He then turned to my mom,  his grandma
He then said what has to be one of the sweetest things I had ever heard…

 

“We need to start selling some things so we can have some money for Aunt Stacey’s baby”

 

Setting his backpack that contained some of his prized belongings  down at my feet he looked up at me and smiled,  then starting to talk about when we should plan a garage sale as soon as possible.

“I have more things I’ll bring out.   A whole bunch!   We can make a lot of money!”

 

I honestly didn’t know what to say… a lump had formed in my throat that really made me want to throw up.   After all the fighting between my mom and I and all the bullshit we were yelling at one another, the only thing this little boy cared about at that moment was the baby.  As young as he was,  he was so concerned about making everyone around him happy.  His main focus was to try his best to make everything better by trying to help the problem the only way he knew how.     That kid had a heart of pure gold.   Right that moment I  wanted to scoop that little boy up and hug him tightly and tell him how much I loved him,  but then I looked over at my mom who was still staring at me.   I couldn’t let her see me breaking down,  not now..   So instead I did something awful and heartless…

I looked down at my nephew standing next to me and coldly rolled my eyes.   “Oh WHATEVER! That’s so stupid!” I hissed down at him.  I remember he just looked up at me with a big confused look on his face and then quietly watched as I  turned around and stomped back into my room,  slammed my door loudly and turned up my music loud.   Not more than a few minutes later there was a knock my door.  It was Brian…

 

“Can I please come in Aunt Stacey?”

 

“NO!  GO AWAY!”

*deafening silence on the other end of my door*    Then….

“Please?”

“Damnit!   Leave me alone!  Go away!  GO AWAY”

 

I think he stood out there for a few more minutes until he finally walked away.   I had my ear pressed to the door listening to see if he was still there and eventually I heard nothing.    Faintly I could hear my mom telling Brian that he didn’t do anything wrong.     That I was having a temper tantrum and it was nobody’s fault but my own.    She was absolutely right…

That night I laid in my bed buried in my covers and cried my eyes out.  To have treated my littlest ally that way was totally and utterly wrong.  All I could think about was what he had said about offering to sell his things to make our lives easier for a new baby.   He cared so much about me,  and about my well being.     Of everyone under my roof,  this little guy always had my back.. and I had treated him horribly.   I cried all night and woke up the next morning nervous to face him for breakfast.   What would I say?   How would I apologize for being a heartless bitch to this little boy who just wanted to help.   But when I got up to go get some cereal,  he was sitting at the kitchen table watching his cartoons.    He looked up at me with a smile and just said  “Oh!  Good morning Aunt Stacey!”  as if nothing had happened.   The backpack full of things, including his beloved stuffed rabbit still sat in a pile on the floor where he had left it the night before.

 

Brian and I never talked about that day,  at least I purposely never mentioned it again.  Just the thought that I had treated him that way still hurts me to this day.  After that day though,  I saw him in a different light.   He was smarter than the average kid.  His mom had raised him to have a big heart and to put others first.   He was always excited to come home after kindergarten to tell us all about what he learned that day.   Good manners,  always saying please, thank you and excuse me and always helping around the house with chores.    He reveled in doing the right thing and made sure that we were all doing the same.   It was also his influence that helped lessen the tension between me and my mom,   we both realized that if a little 5 year old boy can act more mature than us,  then we had a lot to learn about our relationship.   It didn’t make the quarrels that we had over my boyfriend… but we never fought that way ever ever again.   We worked on a better way to communicate,

 

I’ll always hold a special place in my heart for Brian and thank my sister for bringing him into the world.   I love that kid to the moon and back…  Thank you, Brian..

 

 

Advertisements

The many flavors of JELLY

We are competitive by nature.   Pretty much from the first day you step
foot into the social world you are in competition with everyone else. Whose
lunchbox is the coolest, who is  better in hop scotch,  who has the nicest
clothing, coolest friends,  best hair,  better parents, better car,  higher job title,
spouse, house, blah blah blah…

It never stops!  And no matter what we ALL are guilty of it.

I guess I have found myself being more observant of it lately since my
social life of where I am currently residing is pretty much nil.   I don’t
have a real big friend circle like I have had in the past.  Most of my close
friends have moved away and are scattered all over the place.  So,  I
am a fly on the wall,  a wallflower… and it’s because of that it’s
heightened my senses in other ways.   I notice more of what’s going on around
me.   I still have a hard time keeping my mouth shut though….  working on
that 🙂

The whole competition thing can be entertaining to watch from a distance,
especially if it’s directed at you in some way…  watching someone fall over
themselves trying to outdo you and hoping for a reaction.   In the beginning
when that sort of thing was done to me,  I would bristle up and get
defensive.   “How dare so and so try to think they are better than ME!”    That would make me want to outdo THEM to the point where it turned into war.   I resented that person for even daring to stick their nose into my business in order to steal my mannerisms.  “Why doesn’t she just do things her own way instead of copying mine?  PATHETIC!”    After a while I actually stood back and looked at the situation…  What I’ve come to discover is when someone is going out of their way to do that to you,  it’s actually a compliment.  I mean,  to have someone actually want to pattern a little bit of their life lead by your example is a very special feeling if you actually think about it.   I’ve done it before,  and it’s shaped the person that I am today.. It’s human nature.

So I say,  if anyone wants a little competition…. BRING IT!   🙂

 

 

“Sorry, wrong number”

Calling the right place on post can be a major pain in the ass.  There are numerous extensions and DSNs,  not to mention the turnover is high and people are constantly moving in and out of offices.   And don’t get me started on the ‘phone directory’ provided online… it may as well be in greek since I don’t understand a word of it.   Especially anything to do with the human hospital numbers, I’ve been guilty of just calling one of the numbers in hopes that whoever it is that picks up the other end can direct me easier than me mulling through pages and pages of extension numbers.

Because of that we receive the occasional wrong number from others trying to reach another department.  We’ve had mental health questions, podiatry, home maintenance requests, and once even a poor mother who thought she was calling the nurses’ line that went into a long story about her son’s circumcision before I was able to politely cut her off to tell her she had called the wrong number.   Usually my co worker and I would just say “I am sorry but you have reached the veterinary clinic” and refer them back to the post operator number to most likely play another game of ‘let’s try this number now” until they reach who they need to.   Yesterday though… we got a call that was different.

I could barely hear the lady on the other end.   At first I thought it was her connection but it was obvious she was having a hard time speaking.  I turned up the volume on my phone and listened to what she had to say.    She was saying something about wanting to get information about traveling across state,  and that she didn’t know what documentation she needed.  Being in the ‘veterinary clinic’ frame of mind I figured she was asking about traveling with pets,  but before I opened my mouth to speak I heard her say the word “Veteran”…… then silence.

“Ma’am?   Are you trying to call the….”  I replied, then I could hear her take a deep breath and she half blurted out as if the words had been choking her in the back of her throat

“You see, I’m the mother….”

Oh GOD…  she was trying to call the Veteran’s office regarding having her child’s remains moved!  You could tell this poor woman was having a hard enough time making this call in the first place and just having me say “You called the Veterinary clinic, not the Veteran’s office” would make it all the more worse.

“Hold on just for a few moments Ma’am, I will get the number of the person you can contact for that”

“Thank you….  very much!”

I put her on hold and my hands were shaking.   Even from that short conversation with that lady I could feel the emotion in her words.  To think of what she was going through calling a military post where her child was once at and now where they will be until arrangements could be made to bring them home.. it broke my heart.   The most I could do was get her to the correct people without any more delay.   Thankfully my husband oversees a number of divisions on post including the Casualties.   I gave her the direct number for them and she thanked me again with a little sniffle and we each hung up the phone.

 

I hope she is able to be reunited with her baby as soon as humanely possible..  and I’m glad I was able to help out if even a little bit by not referring her out into ‘post operator’ land.

The other Stacey’s mom

In my elementary school class we had two Staceys, myself and another girl.    We were friendly with one another for the most part but I wouldn’t say we were ‘friends’.     She was more social than I was (back then the lunch lady was more social than I was!) and I would just assume melt into the wallpaper most days at school rather than    be a part of a gaggle of girls.   That’s why I have so many observation stories to share,  I wasn’t like a ‘normal’ kid.  But anyways..

If I remember correctly the other Stacey’s mother worked in some position at our school so she was able to keep a close eye on her daughter.  In social terms that made her more popular.  Her parents had a big house, drove a nice car and she always had pretty clothes.  Every year for her birthday her mother would bring trays of cupcakes to her class for all of the kids.  She was liked by everyone and everyone wanted to be her best friend.   A few of my classmates had mothers that were teachers or worked in the church part of the school while mine was a glorified stay at home mom. (nothing at ALL to be ashamed of because my mom rocked her job!)  but in ‘popular kid’ terms that wasn’t enough to join the cook kid cliques.   Cliques in my class were easily divided by popularity and that means the only clique I was in was my own.  Well, me and one other person, my best friend Tammy.  At school her and I did everything together, and when she wasn’t at school I would sit by myself somewhere at recess and patiently wait for the day to be over.   My teachers told my mother about it all the time and said I needed to be more social with the other kids.  So my mom signed us up with some carpool to school program that the other mothers were doing. Every day a different mom would drive us all to and from school. ( It just so happened that the kids that were in my carpool was a few of the girls who weren’t very fond of me.)  When the carpool idea didn’t work,  the teachers in my class started putting me and the other Stacey together in the same study group hoping that we would become bffs based on the fact that we shared the same name.  Then, one day her mother showed up to our classroom and passed out party invitations to everyone in the class,  myself included.   Stacey was having a birthday party.

My mom was more excited about the party than I was.  She went out one day while I was at school and bought a birthday gift for me to take to the party and then picked out my outfit I was going to wear.   Thankfully Tammy was invited too and I knew I could rely on her to help me blend into the surroundings.  My mom, however urged me to try to make new friends.  All I could tell her was “I’ll try”.

I remember walking inside Stacey’s house and thinking to myself “WOW”.   Every inch of her house was decorated up for this party right down to colored balloons, streamers and her name on banners pretty much in every room.   Stacey was all dressed up with yellow ribbons in her hair  and very politely thanking everyone for coming all the while as her mother was ushering kids into the back yard for festivities.  There were games, food,  and all of the kids were getting along well for the most part, and I remember I even came out of my shell for a bit that afternoon since the kids that were normally mean towards me seemed to accept me and we all ran around acting like little girls (as much as we could run around in our party dresses, that is!)

Just before the party was over,  Stacey’s mother told us all to get in a line and lead us over to a patio table where a big book sat.

“Now, I want everyone to sign this for Stacey!”  she said “Write something nice about her and how much you appreciate this party”   I looked over at Stacey and she was burying her face in her hands.  I think she wanted to fade away into her surroundings like I usually did.  The book turned out to be a memory book of some sort.  A glorified baby book and beyond, so to speak.  Every single social event in her life so far had been documented in this book and her mom carefully made sure that her daughter had a memento that she would look back on in years to come and remember how much fun her childhood was.
By the time I got to the table she handed me a pen and I started to write “Thank you for inviting me to your party,  love Stacey”   Her mom looked at what I was writing and snatched the pen out of my hand and tossed it onto the table.   “What? No!…  write something else … something you like about her! You can do much better than that!”.  Normally her mother was so sweet and soft spoken,  but not now!     I looked at all of the other signatures before me and there were things like “I like your dimples”  “you have a nice back yard”   “your cake was pink, my fav color”    Finally I picked the pen back up  wrote “I like that we have the same name”  and handed the pen back to her.   She took it, looked back down at what I wrote and dismissed me with a wave.   I guess my entry was sufficient.  I then went back into the yard and joined the other kids who were all now looking for Stacey.  She was nowhere to be found though, and I think she stayed scarce until the party ended and our parents all arrived to pick us up.  After that her mother came out and passed out party bags for everyone that had toys and other things inside them.  “Stacey picked each of these out just for you!”   That appeased us kids for the most part and everyone seemed to forget the weird book incident.

After that I saw Stacey,  and the other popular kids in a different light.    Everybody had some form of weirdness they had to deal with in their lives.. whether you were popular or not popular.   Her mom wanted to preserve her daughter’s social life in a book,  whether she liked it or not.    I have no doubt she meant well… but she should have gotten more of her daughter’s input first.

 

I wonder if she still has it to this day..?

Identity crisis

The following is a vent and nothing more.  I’m not planning anything drastic or stupid so there is no need to worry.   I just feel that if I keep all of these emotions bottled up for much longer it’s weighing on my health as well as my soul.  Maybe if it’s all out I’ll be able to deal with it easier.  At least I hope so.

Lately I’ve been having more issues staying motivated and finding things that keep my interest for any length of time.  When I’m not at work, I feel like I am not accomplishing anything worth while and would much rather be sleeping .   When I sleep I have a good chance of dreaming and my dreams have felt better to live in than reality.  I forget things very easily now and I know I frustrate those close to me when I am scatterbrained and seem more ‘helpless’ because I can’t accomplish a simple task.   I don’t know if this is typical of a midlife crisis, hormonal, an ‘uber’ form of depression or what because I don’t have anybody who would understand to ask… but things just don’t feel right.  I don’t feel like the person I once was,   and not knowing if this is just a temporary phase in my life is really scaring me. I keep hoping one day I’ll wake up and everything will be back to normal,  but the longer this goes on it feels like that will never happen.  It’s a very dark and lonely way to feel… and I don’t know how or why this happened.

I am happily married,  don’t get me wrong.  I don’t think I could imagine my life with anyone else in it,  but even he has changed towards me. He has a very stressful job and over time has allowed it to consume his life,  both work and home.  I’ve always supported him in his career paths and for the most part I don’t feel that I fit the stereotypical “nagging wife” definition.

I met him on the internet back before dating on the internet was a huge thing.   I wasn’t looking for anybody but God knew I needed someone so there he was.  Our first weekend meeting face to face was carefree and so, so amazing.   We had a chance to get to know one another online before meeting face to face so that helped our meeting be less awkward overall.   We spent a wonderful weekend in Lake Tahoe and without even needing to say it decided that we would spend the rest of our lives together.  Now, all of the things that he said he loved about me back then seem to irritate him now.  For instance, he said he used to love how spontaneous I was.   We once made a pact to never fall into a routine.  Why?  Because routines are boring!    We said no matter what curveballs were thrown at us in life, that we would do whatever we wanted because at heart we would always be young, even if one of us was in a wheelchair.    “You keep me young”  he once said, and I had a talent of making him laugh (I love to hear him laugh)   A few months ago we were both wide awake on a Saturday night and I leaned into him and said “Let’s go to Denny’s!”   When we lived overseas we would often make comments on how we missed good old American 24 hour diners so I figured my mentioning it may not end up with us going to Denny’s but may get a chuckle from him and remove his nose from his computer screen long enough for a short conversation.   Instead, I got an annoyed sigh and the reply “NO, ARE YOU KIDDING?  it’s TWO THIRTY IN THE MORNING!”.  After that I just turned over and made myself fall asleep.   That was the last time I ever suggested anything spontaneous.

I hope I am able to sort things out where I can be happier eventually.  We have a vacation coming up and I’m hoping without the distractions of the internet and other electronics that maybe we can learn to fall in love with one another again.  Start over again in a lot of ways..?     I miss who I was a few years ago,  back when I didn’t feel like I was always saying or doing the wrong thing and when the thoughts inside my head would come out of my mouth a lot easier. Back when I made people around me happy rather than frustrated  and when I wanted to be awake rather than laying in bed on the weekends hoping to sleep straight through to Monday when I finally get to go back to work where I feel important and needed

 

I lost my parents way too early in life.. and right now I would give anything to be able to have them here now to hold me and tell me everything is going to be alright.

 

😦

 

 

 

 

My review of Rachael Ray’s “Nutrish Dish” brand dog food

So many pet foods out there.. ! aisles and aisles of them, all claiming to be the very best, highest quality or made with the freshest ingredients blessed by mother nature herself, etc etc. I remember when I was a little girl we fed our dog Purina Puppy chow as a puppy (the kibbles with the powdered stuff on it that turned into a creamy substance when water was added)  and then Purina Dog chow as an adult/senior.  There were no breed specifics, special needs, ‘hormone free, additive free, all natural, free range, soy free/wheat free/ choices out there.   A few years later  while watching Price is right one day I saw a commercial for ‘cycle’ brand dog foods. Cycle one, cycle two, cycle three. It was pretty much laid out in front of you. Feed your dog this.. and it will eat.

 

mqdefaultYYBAR046

 

 

Everything was so simple back then…

but then came greedy corporations that thought making pet food (AND human food for that matter, but that’s another rant!) was too expensive for their bottom line so they cheapened it, started adding fillers, fake colors, fake flavors and crap that has now become what we call our food today. Working in the veterinary field as long as I have, I have witnessed hundreds of cases of doggy diets done wrong. Your average consumer will judge a pet food by how it is displayed on the container. “Fresh garden greens, carrots, peas, potatoes and chicken” Wow! perfect! it all sounds fine and good until you come home from work that night to find “Fido” has vomited on your carpet and those ‘fresh garden carrots’ have left a bright orange stain that is very unbecoming of a fresh carrot. What I’ve noticed is usually it’s the prettiest bags that hold the biggest lies when it comes to picking out a pet food. One brand which will remain nameless looks amazing on display, but it’s all for show.  The majority of allergy cases we have seen have been related to feeding that brand of pet food.   Dogs will start having recurring ear infections and skin issues, wake their owners up in the middle of the night licking and chewing on their feet and butts.   Anal gland issues, you name it!  That’s what you get when you eat stuff that doesn’t belong inside your belly… your body starts to revolt!   It’s not the pet owner’s fault at all,  it’s false look of the food and the bells and whistles in its advertising that makes them think they are making an amazing choice for their furbaby.

 

img_0349-2

 
Influenster once again offered to send me a product to test, and this time it was for my dogs.    A new food that was debuting to the public in March.  Rachael Ray’s Nutrish/Dish with Chicken and Vegetables.

12716147_10153869047551745_5748880193647158143_o

My dogs were thrilled at the opportunity to eat!  No, really!   Usually when I feed them I have to put their bowls at opposite ends of the room.  Otherwise Rebel will gobble up a mouthful of his food then run over to Daisy’s bowl and do the same.. running back and forth until both bowls worth of food are packed tightly in his mouth like a hamster.  He will then attempt to chew and swallow what is in his mouth like a doggy version of ‘chubby bunny’ that often ends up with him coughing out whole pieces of kibble and me chasing him around trying to make sure he doesn’t choke himself to death.    I did an ‘unboxing’ video for Influenster and it turned into a double feature of unboxing and taste test.  Mainly because once I opened the bag the dogs were REALLY interested in what I had.   The first thing I noticed in the bag was dried veggies.   Carrot slices, shriveled up dried peas and little dice shaped dried potato bits.  Then there were chicken bits with kibble.   I divvied out a bit of each piece and let my dogs check it out.   Both were enthralled in eating the food.   Not gobbling up and swallowing as fast as possible but rather enjoying each bite.  Their noses remained in their bowls (THEIR bowls,  Rebel wasn’t doing his usual running back and forth routine) until almost each bite was gone.    The only thing they had trouble with was the rather large carrot slices.  I tried to break them into smaller bits but resorted to just soaking them in a tiny bit of water to soften them.. then they were free game to devour! Overall I really like this food for my pups.  They really took to it and it is very apparent that Rachael Ray formulated this food with the pet’s health in mind.   It’s not just a ‘pretty’ food but rather a REAL food.    Am I going to switch my dogs over to this when it officially hits the shelves?   You bet!

 

Another reason now why I loves me some Rachael Ray.. 😉

 

12747493_10153869046091745_4811608854985546606_o

Thank you Influenster and Thank you Rachael Ray!  ❤

 

“What was THAT look for??”

Sigh…..

 

this is a rant that may not make sense but it’s been on my mind for so long I just have to get it out.   I don’t know if anyone else has had this problem before or if I really do give off a look that makes me look like an evil asshole.  Whatever the case it’s something really hard to deal with and emotionally it hurts because I don’t really feel that I’m like that.

I will get comments just out of the blue

Geez, what was that look for?”
“What’s the matter with you, Stacey?”
“I’ve been told by the other employees that you have been short with them today, you are really going to have to change your attitude?”
“WE already know what Stacey thinks, her expression tells it all!”
“What was that nasty look for?”
“I saw you driving in your car the other day and you looked so pissed off.  I waved at you and you didn’t even see me.  You don’t even smile when you are driving!”

There are more comments like that..   a lot more.   And it happens all the time now.     When I try to tell people that I am not upset all I get is “Uh huh… well your look says it all!”  After a while I just give up trying to explain because I guess I do make some ugly looks.  Ugly looks that tells the world how foul tempered and annoyed I am with everything.  Why would people lie?   So because of that to some, I am just an ass.  An ass that always gives everyone dirty looks.    Watch out for Stacey!  she’s got an attitude problem!   Remember my blog about first impressions?  I’ve been a victim of that where I currently work.    I think I’ve been pegged as the bitch so people tend of walk on eggshells around me.   What do I do?  What CAN I do?   it seems like some people have already drawn up their own conclusions about me.
It’s enough to bring me to tears sometimes  (most times) … I wish I could somehow film my expression for a week just to see what others see.   I want to know why so many people think that of me.   I am not that kind of person,  I swear!  I want to spend what little time I have left on this earth enjoying life, making people happy, helping animals and making friends… not constantly saying over and over again “I wasn’t making an ugly face”

I do get deep in thought a lot.   Back when I was little I was a shy outcast.  Not only did I have a pretty bad stuttering problem I also didn’t fit in with the popular crowd so I was happy sitting off by myself in elementary school playing with bugs or watching all of the other kids play.   Occasionally one of the popular kids would walk up to me and say “What’s wrong with you?  Are you weird?”  I would just look down at my feet and say “I guess”   I guess I was weird…. but I was happier being weird than considering myself that mean girl’s equal.    Over the years I found my voice and became more social.  I was still shy and wasn’t considered a social butterfly, but  I made a small circle of  friends and developed a pretty comical personality.  I love to make people laugh, and I’ve been told before I am fun to work and hang out with.

However,  it’s those other people that insist that I’m always giving off nasty looks that is making me rethink how I really am.   Is it something I am doing subconsciously?   am I fooling myself when I tell people that I really am happy?    Do I really have that ‘ugly’ face that offends people and makes me not the kind of person people want to socialize with anymore?

It has almost gotten to the point where I have started hating what I see when I look in a mirror.

 

 

I am truly at a loss..

Time to get back on the wagon

bikini me n lau

This is me (on the right)  circa a LONG ass time ago.   The girl I’m with is one of my best friends in the entire world and we are at some water park near Reno, Nevada.   We thought it would be cute to buy matching bikinis (and we pulled it off in my opinion!)  of course the dark story behind the condition of my body is that at the time I was with someone who body shamed me into an eating disorder (I would buy a pair of jeans or some other article of clothing a few sizes too small on purpose then absolutely wreck myself until I could fit in it… even if it meant drinking straight peroxide to induce vomiting… yeah.. let’s not get into that)   I saw myself through different eyes back then.  Manipulated vision, I like to call it.   Now that I look at it over 20 years after it was taken,  my friend and I looked DAMN good!

I think this picture was the last time I ever wore a 2 piece bathing suit.  Not that I will ever wear one again..  my body just doesn’t like 2 piece anythings anymore,  but I’m going to work on getting my body back into the less ‘fluffy’ form.   I had done it over a year ago and had amazing progress,  but then fell off the wagon after a huge falling out with one of my now ex friends.

Me @ 2012

before

 

and here’s me a little over a year ago after a very determined diet plan.

better

I felt WORLDS better!   Was starting to get more energy, my knees stopped hurting and I was looking forward to dressing up at events.

boat

 

Well,  hubby booked us on a cruise for March so I’m making resolutions to get back into shape for it.    Thankfully I’m not back in the shape of the first picture.. but have dwindled down to the point where I get winded easily.   I’m determined to make a difference in these upcoming months  (and this time…  to stay at that goal!)

Challenge, accepted 2016!   Let’s do this!

 

 

Why?

It’s the New Year and unlike my friends on facebook I didn’t post the obligatory “OMG HAPPY NEW YEAR” messages for all to see.    Because a friend of mine found out earlier yesterday that her brother had taken his own life.
Even as I’m typing this several hours after finding out myself from her my eyes are tearing up thinking about it.    My heart is breaking for her  and for her whole family.   What they must be going through right now.     WHY?  why do people do this to themselves and ultimately to the family and friends that love and care about them?!    I, myself have suffered depression (I still do in a lot of ways)  and have dealt with all of the horrible issues that go along with it….( and yes, I have uttered the words “the world would be better off without an eff up like me in it”   but I could never do that to my family and friends !  Never ever ever!  )    Leaving people behind to wonder if there could have been anything they could have done to make a difference.   Leaving people behind to blame themselves for your choices.

I don’t understand,  and never will.

 

 

Silk’n Flash&Go Express review

Here we go again!   This year I was really on a roll when it came to lucking out in Influenster trials.     This time they asked if I wanted to try out a hair removal system that doesn’t involve waxing, plucking or shaving.      I’ve discovered the older I get,  the more hair is appearing in places where I really wish it wasn’t.     It takes a lot longer to ‘girl myself up’ than it used to… and if I don’t keep up on the regimen I fear I’ll end up like this:

thufir1

Same with my upper lip.  It’s not a thick growth of hair but even the scattering of dark hairs in that area is still enough to cause unwanted attention from other people.    It’s just…. gross!    So as I was saying when I was asked if I wanted to try this product out for free in exchange for my opinion  I couldn’t say YES quickly enough.

 

The day it arrived I was going to do an unboxing video but my computer was having issues.   It wouldn’t upload a long video without overheating… so I figured I would do one AFTER the fact…. still didn’t work.

 

The problem I was having is it was hard to film actual progress in using this product.   That isn’t necessarily a bad thing though…  see,  the way this works is the changes DO show itself over a duration of a few treatments, but if you aren’t treating a particularly hairy area it doesn’t really give you the same affect rather than just telling you about it.

 

12376693_10153736416841745_3921129662409364175_n

The areas I chose to treat were my upper lip,  my armpits and my embarrassing, hairy Hobbit toes.

 

 

to prepare the areas for treatment they recommend that they are washed, shaved and patted dry.    Shaving my upper lip… ugh!     That wasn’t very easy to do considering I knew how it would turn out if the Silk’n Flash&go didn’t do what it was supposed to do!  I would have thick, manly stubble grow in where the hair was and I would be in a worse state.    It took a LOT of nerve to shave my face,  but I finally opted to do it…. after all, if this device did work,  I wouldn’t have this problem for much longer.    I shaved my lip, my pits, my Hobbit toes, patted the skin dry  and prepared for the first treatment.

The instructions said to treat weekly and that sometimes it could take up to 4 treatments to see results,  but I started noticing the hair ‘thinning’ on the third week.    It was subtle,  but definitely noticeable for me since I have to deal with those areas on a daily basis.   Within a month I could look down at my feet and not think about going to Mount Doom and dropping a ring in the lake of fire.

The only effects I felt were the slight heat sensation during treatment,  it didn’t irritate my skin at all and was a lot easier than I thought it would be.   the only drawbacks are if the person desiring treatment is a frequent tanner, has tattoos on the areas they want to treat or has a darker complexion that the unit would not be able to pulsate into.   (thankfully though there is an indicater that checks skin tone before use so it’s basically fool proof!)

Interested in trying it out?  I recommend giving it a go,  since I now have less hair to deal with and only because of a few easy treatments that literally takes minutes to complete.

 

Thank you Influenster!

 

12295313_10153693809371745_5887635695505540895_n