The Monday before the Valentine’s Day


We are back to the beginning of another week welcoming Monday.

monday be good

After a somewhat lazy weekend with the boy, getting back into the grind will be a real challenge. I mean pajamas were the outfit of choice and now I am back into work clothes which are not nearly as comfy. Plus there are schedules and appointments. Hello Monday!

For so many this week can be either really good or really bad depending on their relationship status. The “will they or won’t they recognize me as their valentine” and the blast of commercialism-in-your-face of the holiday doesn’t help some folks.

Some people have detailed plans and other have no plans. Some are going about the week in a haze of hearts and flowers while others are just struggling to get by.

Personally, it’s always been an over the top holiday that I don’t place a lot of emphasis on. If I am with someone, then that is wonderful, but then I would hope they know every day how much I care about them. I would do something but not on a grand level. If I am single, I enjoy watching others have their moments of love or maybe it’s lust. I don’t “hate” because I don’t have that “special someone.” It just does not bother me one way or another.

sometimes heart needs time to accept

From the time I was young, my mom always gave my brother and I a “valentine” on the holiday. It was her way of letting us know we were her valentines too. Her and my father had 46 valentines before he passed away. Now I try to make sure I give her a little something, even a card, just so she knows she’s m valentines too. I do the same for my boy. I get it now how much you love your children and include them to make them know they are a special to you. Not just every day, but also on Valentine’s Day.

It’s the beginning of the week and Valentine’s Day isn’t until Sunday! I am just noting that I have a date with the TV at 8:00 PM CST no matter what as the Walking Dead return! This girl is fired up about that! Ha!

There is much going on in my fabulously graceless life but I am one strong, stubborn, crazy chic that isn’t giving up or giving in to the challenges life throws at me. I will fight my way through the day and pray for strength and peace. Maybe a lot of peace! Some sanity wouldn’t hurt either!

monday clothes and bra

I hope you all face this Monday with an attitude of determination and remember to Keep Hope Alive!

 

 

 

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Being a kid is required for sanity


kids joy u should too

I challenge anyone who has the opportunity to spend 24 hours just being a kid! You don’t have to run races or get too dramatic, it just involves being in the right mind frame. It also involves not thinking so much. Being a kid or even being kid like requires you to let go of the tensions and suspicions of everyday life.

Young children, usually 7 and under, have a true innocence and can often see things we as adults cannot, as well as imagine fantastical worlds. They blend things they have seen during their short lives, things they’ve experienced and things, I believe, they remembered from a past life. They say so many things they don’t even understand, but yet in some ways they do. It can be hysterically profound.

We place so many responsibilities and schedules on them. Not that I don’t think consistency isn’t a good thing, because it is. But sometimes you just need to kick back and see what happens. You will still eat and do all the things needed to take care of and fuel yourself, but you do it in a more laid back frame of mind.

no plan see what happens

It has been a truly challenging week for me. I knew that I wasn’t necessarily up for doing too much, yet I always love to have fun with the boy. I get creative and finding fun things to do for him. I admit I am a big kid at heart so it isn’t hard to find things we both enjoy doing!

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So for a whole day we just did kid stuff. I didn’t do any chores, other than cooking and pick up from that. We hung out, watched movies; we were good guys, bad guys, became zombies, had sword fights, did science projects, had superpowers, morphed into creatures and laughed so hard we couldn’t see. We set up a table in the bedroom and ate breakfast and lunch watching movies. We ran around the house screaming and chasing each other and the cat. When it came time for dinner, I made homemade venison spaghetti with little cheese on the top and we ate in our pajamas because we felt like it.

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We stayed up late and took baths and showers and put on clean pjs before laying down to stories and a movie. It was going to be more movies but the boy finally passed out! Shortly after, so did I!

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Lately life has been extremely stressful. I am finding more creative way to lessen my stress and enjoy my life. It doesn’t have to be flashy or planned out to perfection; it just has to be fun and relaxing. Loving from the little man doesn’t hurt either!

Enjoy the pictures from the maos of our lives!

I wish you all a fabulously fun Sunday!

creativity m angelou

Keep Hope Alive!

 

Beyond happy it’s Saturday


love sat mornings

I cannot tell you happy I am it is Saturday. I am done with this week. It is now behind us and I can’t tell you how pleased I am. The boy and I are planning a lazy weekend. Well, mine may be lazier than his!

There have been so many things that changed in my world in the last week. Some things I didn’t see coming, some things I had an idea and some that just blew me away. It wasn’t just one area either, no, not for this fabulously graceless human. It had to have multiple layers both physically and mentally. It’s like Murphy, as in Murphy’s Law, has taken a shine to me and wants to shake things up a bit. I feel like a bouncy ball in a blender.  

meaningful silence better words

*reblogged from https://fightorflights.files.wordpress.com/2016/02/img_0770.jpeg

I am working to find my happy creative space. Fortunately that small human I gave birth to is with me and he makes me happy in my soul. He makes me face the day, I have no choice. Even if I wanted to feel sorry for myself or lazily wallow and uncommunicative I don’t have a prayer with him around! That’s a good thing!

Another bonus is I will creatively find time to do more writing. It is so strong and such a part of me I can’t deny it. I am working on doing more with it. I am definitely going to stop holding back.. for the most part! With that comes the quiet reflection, which I desperately need. I also know my loves will be there for me and give me the space I need. Just understanding it’s a part of me moving forward and accepting new challenges.

When things get tough, I know those that I can count on my peeps that are there for me no matter what.

They aren’t pretty words and it might as well be written across the universe. I AM WITH YOU. I ACCEPT YOU AS YOU ARE.

That is really all that I need. It’s all anyone truly needs. When your life gets turned upside down, being able to handle it, even when it brings you to your knees for a minute or ten, and having people you know have your back means Everything.

Today I am thankful for those who have stuck through me through thick and thin. Screams, laughter, tears, my flakiness, mi vida loco and even gaps in communication, I know I can count on them.

Y’all are always there for me when I need it and thank you sounds so trite. I can only hope you know how blessed, thankful and grateful to have these people in my life!

I will stop getting all mushy now, but sometimes, we need to take a minute and not only remember, but thank those people who help keep us out of the padded white rooms!

no respond negative be peaceful

reblogged from https://fightorflights.files.wordpress.com/2016/02/img_0768.jpeg

I wish you all a fabulous Saturday!

Always keep hope alive

Too much….


how much too much

Sometimes life can be just too much. Sometimes it can be a person, place or situation. I know I can be a bit much to handle at times. I mean I could be classified as a hot mess. *Ahem could be.

It is said that you are not given more than you can handle. There are so many times I want to just call bullshit on this one.

sometimes best of you and your life

Then I really think about it. Usually it’s when something was abruptly cut off. I mean I know there are times when everything isn’t right, but in my twisted mind, I try to find every solution I can think of before I just cut it off. Whether it’s work, relationships or my routes to certain locations I really think about it and how it will impact not only me, but those I love.

Sometimes things do become too much and you have to cut it off for your own sanity. This is something I can completely understand. It doesn’t matter if it’s me cutting or someone else cutting, I understand it and even if I don’t like it, can abide by it if it’s done respectfully. That means civil and without drama for me.

ST good fall aprat better together

It doesn’t mean you don’t still think about things. You don’t stop wondering “what if”, but you realize that often times things do happen for a reason, even if you don’t see the big picture just yet.

Then I think about other areas where I feel that there is just too much to do. Things I don’t know if I can handle it. At least not with my usual fabulous graceless ways. It is at this stage, that I begin looking at creative ways to handle the overabundance of responsibilities and challenges I face. It isn’t always easy. Sometimes I want to pitch a hissy fit and have a come apart. I want to scream and yell and throw things. However, I have learned that while keeping an old set of cheap dishes to break in the driveway can be exhilarating, I’m starting to get over having to clean up after. I have enough to do without adding something else. It still feels good though. But then again so does beating on the drums and playing rock-n-roll with the boy. Less mess!

So when I think, what is too much for me? I realize too much is what I make of it. I can control how I react to it and how I handle it.

Here’s looking forward to a fabulous Friday!

Never forget to Keep Hope Alive!

 

 

Stop the train, I think I want to get off….


That moment when you are at your wits end and you call your sister and say, “Go out to the pen, grab a chicken, a rooster, whatever you have most of and sacrifice that critter and chant for things to get gooder!” Yeah, I totally had one of those moments.

Times like that is where 80’s movies and song quotes come to mind. “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.” Ferris Bueller. That’s the first one that popped in the old noggin’. Maybe being of the MTV and a Gen X’er play into that. Who knows?! And really, do I care? Eh, maybe not so much. I mean I can’t even place artist and songs together unless we go way back and even then I may know the entire song but not who sang it much less wrote it!

never know how strong u r until its only choice

By the way, the sacrifice thingy worked, at least for the one issue I had which involved an early start to my morning by at least an hour. And anyone who really knows me knows I am Not an early morning person unless I went to bed really early. I’m more of a night owl. Lately I am just a need more sleep-in-love-with-my-bed-and-think-about-it-far-too-often kind of owl. Human. Whatever!

This week has been a real hum-dinger! I am hoping and praying for a better today and a fabulous weekend. Life is what you make of it. Life may be tossing zingers at me, but I am truly working hard to handle it with class. Sometimes there just are no words. You have to just trust in what is there and believe in yourself. No matter how hard it gets, you know you can get through it. Maybe a little more worn than you had thought, but you make it through.

For me I learned when I had the boy that I can’t let those zingers drag me down for too long. I can wallow in it and I can ask why, but I also have to be present for him. I have to function for him and I want to. Gone are the days of me being able to stay in my pajamas for the weekend or when I come home from work. I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Sometimes let go

The whole single parenting thing can be very daunting at times. Even if you co-parent well, it doesn’t make other things just easy. If you don’t co-parent well and you have other issues, it can be even worse. I am just blessed to be a parent at all. I am just thankful he is so open and understanding with me. He talks to me about anything and he’s only 5. He tells me he knows he can talk to me about whatever he needs and I won’t get too mad or upset.

I do screw up, pretty much weekly, but I know I am doing something right. I know that my greatest contribution to this world isn’t the words that I write but the human I teach to go out into the world. Love. Hope. Compassion. Understanding. Questioning. Patience. Faith. Trust. All of those things as well as teaching him how some other people hate, and sometime for no reason than that was how they were taught. Heady stuff.

The best part is that he makes life more bearable when things are rough. He loves me unconditionally. That and I now know my sister will do the bird sacrifice for me make all right in my world!

Happy Friday Eve! Keep Hope Alive!!!

thrs is friday eve

 

 

sometimes


Sometimes

Sometimes it seems so hard to just move. It’s hard to go on with a smile on my face acting as if I am doing fabulous. Though I think the matching baggage under my eyeballs tell a bit of the story. But only a tiny portion.

I sometimes feel overwhelmed about life. It isn’t always due to outside forces, but often from somewhere inside. Things I need to for myself and my sanity for me to be able to survive. Sometimes people don’t understand that and I get it.

Who am I kidding? I want to more than just survive, but also thrive in my life. I have so many things that are good in my life. The boy, people, situations and over all just fabulousness.

sometimes stand alone

I also have things that are somewhat beyond my control yet things that I do have some power in how they are handled. Of course other things that make me pause and think about the course my life is on currently. Where can I make improvements, what can I change to make things better, those kinds of things.

That is where sometimes the inability to move creeps in. I have so much to do, so many things I need to take care of and I get lost in some form of time suckage. I can watch children’s television programming, I can get lost in a book. Or I can just sleep, which is what I want to do the most of lately.

sometimes wrestle snuggle with deamons

I think today I am going to take one step at a time. This middle day of the work week, I am going to remember to stop and breathe. So often I go and go and go. Instead of stopping I seem to kick it up a notch. I know I need to slow down. No one can keep up at this pace. So I make myself stop.

Maybe we all need to slow down every once in a while so that we aren’t forced to stop. We just need to remember that.

For my own sanity, I will keep hope alive and get through this day. But I will give it my all while remembering to take it easy too. I can do this. I am the Fabulously Graceless Lady Maos.

 ST just not do anything

 

 

Know when to fold ’em


I have this “flaw” that sometimes gets me into to trouble. When I meet people I tend to trust them and give them the benefit of life if things are awkward or something. This especially true for people who are friends of friends or people I meet again after not seeing for many years.

I do have a BS meter that goes off if someone is straight up not “right” and I can feel if something is “off” with 95% of those people. Sometimes one or two may slip through, but for the most part I am a trusting person.

Many years ago, many, many come to think of it, I learned to play poker. I was always decent at the game and enjoyed the fun of playing with friends. I have never been a serious gambler because I can’t afford it!

gamblin

About 12 years ago, a group of my peeps and I started having a game night once a week at the “Booty” family house, because, frankly, most of us hated going out to clubs and where a bunch of drunk, sweaty folks were and we would rather be closer to home. Plus a few couples had kids and we wanted to all get together and it was easy and fun. After about a month we started playing . Texas Hold ‘Em mostly and I loved it! I loved playing and hollering, “Gamblin’!” when I made a “big bet”. We were all pretty broke but the pot size could get up to $50 or even $100 from a .50 buy in, so if I was gamblin’ why not make it fun?! Plus, all the guys all read up on Poker and strategies and statistics. Us girls understood the rules. Yes we had to have a little “cheat sheet” that told us if having all the same suit with five cards in a row was better or worse than 2 jacks and 3 aces, but that was only for a few months. We never read the books we just played by “feeling”. Sure we lost some but you can bet I won more than I lost because I didn’t have much to lose! If I lost out I could sit on the sidelines and still chat with my friends.

not perfect

I am not into playing head games or mind games. I don’t have time for them nor the patience. I am pretty straight up. I don’t lie or cheat. I am a big believer in karma. I may not always give away my hand, but I share what I can with those I am close to.

I will cover for a friend in a heartbeat. I will give them the benefit of the doubt. I will go the extra mile for them. I do not “share” their life or things they tell me in confidence with others. That is a part of what makes these relationships so special. It is the trust and understanding of who we are as human beings and how we gel. I don’t get into putting down friends with others who don’t like each other. It’s just not me. In fact, I have had some people leave due to the fact I choose to remain friends with others. Relationships I still have to this day and don’t miss those who left for jealousy or misunderstandings because they were too petty to realize that true friendships are a beautifully, rare thing and you don’t just toss it away because someone else doesn’t like it. This isn’t grade school and we aren’t choosing sides.

i love my crazy friends

Some of my best humans on the planet I don’t hear from on any kind of “regular” basis. I can think of 3 right now that I haven’t spoken to in many months, yet if they called or I called, we would pick up conversation where we left off. I am thankful to social media in that respect because we can at least see parts of each other’s lives. I have other friends that we haven’t seen each other in years yet we still talk, text or email randomly. If something happens, we find a way to be there for each other.

I am often perplexed and shocked at some people who act as if this is some sort of weird animal mating ritual instead of how I am as a human in my relationships.

You know how you meet people and you just feel they are good people? They may be struggling and you talk and find things in common, help each other out. Then out of left field they just leave you hanging with your mouth open because in all that you talked about you didn’t seem them acting like that.

This is a recent experience of a girl I met. She had transplanted here, was looking for work and putting her life back together. I could see the good in her. We talked a good bit and I helped find her work. She waited to start due to the changes in her life and I respected that. When she said she could help out I believed her. When she didn’t show to cover the one shift I really needed her for I was floored. The text and calls later in the day and days following were just pathetic. I went back looking for signs I missed in texts and emails. I found them in the inconsistencies I chose to look over as “she wasn’t thinking” or “maybe she meant this” instead of the blatant disrespect of myself and others.

Every once and a while it happens with others too, but not so much. I’ve learned when to fold my hand and sit back and chat and when to gamble.

I still choose to gamble in this game of life and end up with the pure joy and blessings to have some amazing relationships in my life. People I know beyond a shadow of a doubt I can count on. I mean jeez, I have to be able to trust my own gut instincts! If I have to fold, I can only hope we get the chance to sit off to the side and talk before walking out the door.  It doesn’t leave me jaded, it just makes me double check those new players who come into the maos.

friends

I’m thinking it’s time for another hand… keep hope alive!

 

Twisty Thursday


Happy Thursday! It’s closer to Friday but kind of like Tuesday close to Friday where Thursday is close to Sunday. Welcome to my mind!

It’s been one of those haven’t had a lot of sleep weeks with tons of projects to accomplish, twists and turny kind of weeks. The kind of week where things are getting done but there is also a lot that isn’t getting done, therefore, I’m freaking out a tab bit. Yeah, that doesn’t make me sound crazy at all. Nope!

In fact, this is one of those posts I wrote whilst laying snuggled up with the boy. He has fallen asleep and his warm little body is pressed against mine. When he sleeps he looks so much younger. He’s getting so big but he still loves to cuddle with his mama. He told me the other day that sometimes at school he can’t give me a hug and kiss at school ‘cause some of the school kids said it wasn’t cool. I asked him why it should matter what they thought. He thought about it for a minute and grinned and said it didn’t. They didn’t know our happy! He said he felt bad that they didn’t want to hug and kiss their moms. I tried to explain to him that sometimes when kids get bigger, they don’t always want their moms and dads around. He informed me that other kids may feel that way he would always hug and kiss me and love me for always no matter what.

So in light of that revelation, I leave you with happiness in my heart and hope for a fabulous Thursday no matter what!

Keep Hope Alive My Fabulously Graceless Friends!

 

 

I woke up alive and realized I needed to live the moments


I rolled out of bed groaning and stumbled to the bathroom to start the getting ready process. Shortly after, I cheerily woke up the boy from his angelic looking sleep and watched him stumble his way to the bathroom and then get himself dressed.

I was putting on the last of my war paint when the text came through that one of our good caregivers was out sick and I needed to fill the shift. I doubled my speed for getting out of the house, changed into scrubs and we left for the day.

My clients were way across town, out in the country. I somewhat know their routine and knew they would be getting hungry and breakfast is part of their routine.

I arrived only a few minutes later than their normal caregiver, “T”, but they remembered me and were happy to have someone there to “assist” them for the day. Mr. K met me at the door with a smile and Miss P was still in the bed. One glance around told me that they had been pretty much alone all weekend, as “T” and I worked together to help make them a schedule and keep things consistent for them. We have a system for them to follow and have shared it with their children. Their family is involved in their care but they have lives and families to raise too, so we are there to help mom and dad.

It isn’t that mom and dad, or P & K, are all that up in years, they are both 70 with her just having a birthday. Their bodies are healthy for the most part and they love to talk, laugh and enjoy life. They no longer go as much as they use to because they are both in different stages of Alzheimer’s and dementia. They are like thousands of others in the Boomer generation that are still “young at heart” and in need of care due to a terminal diagnosis.

Miss P has middle stage Alzheimer’s and needs help bathing, getting dressed and can no longer cook or clean. She talks some, more in the afternoons, but she is so sweet and a joy to be around. She has no problem with me bathing her and “helping” her get pretty for her husband. As long as she knows where he is, and I gently remind her if she gets anxious, she is fine.

Mr. K has early stage dementia. He “runs” the household and “helps” Miss P. She is his world and he talks of “his beautiful pearl” and “young blushing bride” as though it is now. You can see the love they share. He knows her memory is “bad” and that she needs help. He knows he “forgets” things but he has reminders and that is why I am there to help them.

We do our best to communicate anything that goes on to each other so that their weekdays flow consistently, or at least a semblance of it.

To watch her struggle to remember how to remove her clothes and thank me over and over again for being so “nice” to “help” her get bathed and dressed for the day, it breaks my heart. I think back to earlier that morning, was it really just that morning? When I got the text I would be covering for T and my day with them.

To see people so vulnerable in so many ways because by nature they are kind and trusting, but now we add in the memory loss factor and I worry for them. My problems and irritations seem to shrink in light of what they face on a daily basis. Not that I don’t have my own issues and hardships, but that I can get so irritated over something so small at times, or that I got so caught up in something I missed something beautiful. It makes me rethink what I see as important.

I think of how my mind works and how I ponder which thing was more important and then I will jump to another topic. I also will multitask and continue on with the flow of my day. I just know what needs to be done and I do it. I may miss things, but I know it’s on the list for tomorrow even if there is no actual written list. Then I stop. Their lives are no longer like that. They can’t remember things as clearly or even at all in some instances.

That afternoon I drove straight from their home through craptastic traffic to get the boy. I knew we had things to do, I still had to work and there were chores to finish, but I scooped him up and hugged and kissed him immediately. I savored the little boy sweat smell and the way he holds me so tight. I want those memories to always be there. I don’t ever want to lose that part of me. If I forget everything else, I want to remember he chose me to be his mommy.

I woke up alive but after going through the day I realized how alive I needed to be and I am thankful that I was reminded just when I needed it.

Keep Hope Alive and have a fabulous day!

Generations X & A: Parenting from the broken hips & other fun science stuff


b in lights

I often read parenting articles and parenting blogs. Let’s face it, we live in a world where technology is literally at our fingertips. I learn so much and it leads me to research other interests and ideas. It teaches me things and helps me understand different perspectives as well as learn new things that are important to my growth as a human being and as a parent.

regardless of generation still a person

I have also learned which category I, along with the boy, have been labeled/categorized into. It’s quite entertaining interesting to say the least. Parts of it I can see as true and parts I just have to laugh depending on who’s spewing the data of said labels.

cow (2)

The other day we went to the local science center. It is always an adventure and my boyfriend was thankfully there to help me hobble make it through the experience without falling out! Can we say food court and I had to use threats of leaving on the boy so mommy could get some carbs so she didn’t pass out! Along with the awesomeness that he carried my bag that I insist on taking and it’s got enough in there in case some catastrophe happens. I’m weird like that. We also used the elevators instead of climbing flights of stars. Small moves Ellie. The place is just plain fun where we enjoy ourselves and I am a big kid too. I also wanted to put things in their proper places in the Itty Bitty city but yeah, I refrained for the most part.

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There is so much to take in and absorb. Even as an adult you would be hard-pressed to not find something you found “cool” in there! I did see one dude napping but that was on the 3rd floor and honestly he did have a comfy spot to sit in and I admit I was jealous of the spot as I was tired but still having fun and by the time you get there I’m sure we’d walked a few miles!

I also enjoy people watching, when I’m not trying out the experiments and checking out the exhibits.

There are multi-generational families that visit and all of us are there because we have a child in our care and we’re tired of being home and TVs and personal technology. Yes it’s a science center but it’s hands on and yes, technology is used, but it still makes it interactive for everyone. (I’m talking about you, my sciatica, acting all mean cause I needed the exercise!*sorry!)

cow (1)

This is where I realized there was also some sort of weird “grouping” of people, if you will, who handled their charges differently. I know this also can go into another area of people who just don’t pay attention to their darling ‘lil rugrats, helicopter parenting, etc but that’s a whole plethora of other topics!

gen x dates

I am referring to the categories/labels placed on those of us born in different “eras”. It seems to have started with the Baby Boomers (those born 1945-1964), followed by Generation X (those born 1963-1980), Generation Y (those born 1981-1994) and of course, Generation Z (those born 1995-2009). Now we have moved on to Generation A (those born 2010 – 2025). Just refer to here for the breakdown! http://www.smh.com.au/lifestyle/diet-and-fitness/talkin-bout-my-label-20110720-1ho7s.htmlI am of the Generation X and the boy is Generation A. I have friends with kids in Generations Y, Z and A…. I get so lost trying to figure it all out! It’s like my family tree with extra twist and turns!

gen a

Confused yet? I sure as hell was! I really had no idea! I just knew there were people of all backgrounds, races and ages and we were all, at some point during the fun, family outing day, having some kind of “moment” with our kids. The fun was watching it happen too!  

battle

It was obvious with the parenting styles and ways folks interacted with the kids. Heck, I was even in battle with someone else’s kids for a bit there when the boy and I were playing with the foam block and pegs… pegs make for good swords and the blocks can be used as shields or projectiles. That one got a bit dicey and I had to pull out the mommy, “Ain’t nobody got time to get injured here, be a bit more careful.” Never did see those kids’ moms but they apparently thought I was cool. It seems I always end up helping parent someone else’s kid and for the most part, I’m okay with it. Especially in small situations like that where I can bail when my kid bolts to the next area that strikes his fancy! I know they can’t leave without an adult so it’s all good! I just wonder which Generation adult they were with!

I leave you with the magic of my boy’s Jedi mind, he hands down relaxed his mind to “beat” 2 adults in the move the ball with your mind game. He even switched sides to make sure he really was that cool! He closed his eyes and meditated to get that ball there! Have to admit I was pretty impressed on that one! It also showed your brainwaves…way cool exhibit and a fabulous way to get him thinking deeper!

mindgames

Have fabulous day and Keep Hope Alive!