Sandie Simply Says

December 27, 2008

Gotcha and other stuff

Filed under: Step Life — by Sandie @ 12:00 pm
Tags: ,

I discovered this great feature on WordPress. I’m sure other blog hosting sites have it, but I just noticed it here. I can choose when I want a post to be published! Isn’t that great? I can write a post at say 11pm on Dec 26 and have it post at noon on Dec 27. So, I decided to trick all of you into thinking that I wrote a post on Saturday, when I really wrote it on Friday night but didn’t publish it until the next day. I’m actually somewhere in Texas or Lousiana and won’t have internet access for hours. Gotcha! Oh wait…I guess I just told you what I did. Ooops!

This is the time that’s always bittersweet for me. I’m happy to be going back to stay in my own bed, but incredibly sad to be leaving part of my family behind. And every time I find myself wishing we lived closer and hoping against hope that just once the needs of the Air Force could meet up with my needs.

We went to see the movie “Marley and Me” tonight…er, I mean last night. There is a scene when Jennifer Aniston is talking about marriage/kids/etc and she says “Nobody told us it would be this hard.” That’s how I feel about my family. I knew entering into a ready-made family wouldn’t be easy. I knew it wouldn’t be all Brady Bunch and roses. What I didn’t expect was this big hole in my heart. The one I walk around with most of the year. It’s only filled when I have all five of my kids under one roof. I knew I’d love the girls, but never expected to love them this much. Never expected the incredible hurt I’d feel every time another visit ended. Nope, nobody told me it would be this hard.

Oh and a quick water heater update: Tony and I decided Christmas night that we’d loan MIL the money for a new water heater (though it was only a loan to make her feel better, we really weren’t expecting her to pay us back). We went to Lowe’s today to price a few water heaters. That’s when I found out the darn thing had a 9 year warranty. I’m not sure why nobody thought to call Whirlpool to enforce the darn warranty! I went in search of warranty information and found a troubleshooting guide. We went as far as we could with the troubleshooting guide and ended up calling in a plumber. Turns out, no licensed plumber has ever looked at the darn thing either. So, the guy comes out and says we need some part that costs $4.16 and they charge $75 an hour for labor (and I don’t think this part will take more than an hour to install). Yep, you saw that right…my MIL has been without hot water for 8 months over $80 and all because she didn’t want to call in a professional. Hopefully, MIL will be able to get the part installed on Monday.

December 26, 2008

The Christmas Guest

Filed under: Step Life — by Sandie @ 11:07 pm
Tags: , ,

Picture it: It’s Christmas Day and the kids are excitedly getting ready to open their gifts. Then Ashley’s cell phone rings. It’s her mom. I hear Ashley tell her, “We’re opening Christmas presents.” For most people, well normal people, that would be a signal to say, “OK, call me back when you’re done.” But no, she keeps Ashley on the phone for at least another 5-10 minutes. And then utters the famous words we all know are coming: “When are you coming over?” This was followed by another phone call about an hour later: “What time are you going to be here?”

Some background information: Tony and I have been married almost 10 years. In that 10 years, we have spent THREE Christmases with the girls (including this year). All three of those were spent in Laredo. And now all three times, it’s been a shared holiday. They spend part of the day with us and part of the day with their mom and because my husband generally takes them over there and stays while they open gifts, HE spends part of his day over there, as well. The only other time we get to spend with the girls is 6-8 weeks in the summer and an occasional spring break (though that hasn’t happened since Alyssa was in kindergarten because the girls’ spring break is a different week then Alyssa’s). To break it down, on a good year, the girls spend 70 days with us and 295 days with their mother. And that’s only if they are with us 8 weeks in the summer, a week at Christmas, and a week for Spring break. On a normal year, they spend 49 days with us and 316 days with their mother (and don’t even get me started on how somehow the courts find this not only fair, but “in the best interest of the child”). She gets 87% of they year with them. Can’t she let us have one completely undisturbed holiday?

I’ll admit, sharing Christmas didn’t bother me much in the last two times this happened. This year, it really bothered me though. Maybe it’s because the girls are getting older. Ashley will be 16 this spring. Last summer, she wasn’t sure she wanted to come for 6 weeks this summer. She wants to go to summer school and then she has band camp (which starts 3 full weeks before school starts!). Our time with them is already precious enough. The last thing we needed was their mom to show up, uninvited.

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