right now

right now

Nov 12, 2010

Calling all country music songwriters!

In need of some material? We're living it right now. The kids came home Wednesday night to start their 4 day weekend, and I thought we would be able to carve some fun time in somewhere, but the deployment fairy "Jody" has gained entrance into our lives yet again, and it looks like no fun will be had. Up until a few minutes ago I thought it was Sunday already thankfully, but nooooo, it's only Friday. Yep, it's been a long 24 hours.

Yesterday started out well. After starting a pair of socks with some on-farm spun alpaca, I decided it was the most fantastic thing since heirloom tomatoes, and I just MUST go back and buy it all (there were 2 more skeins of that particular hand dyed batch), I have a lot of Christmas gifts to knit! So off we went to the yarn store, and I couldn't believe it - the kids were good! I prefer NOT to take them unless it's a "fiber emergency". One of the gals at the store let them wind the balls and they couldn't stop talking about it!

Finn getting to spin the "thingamajig"

Loch had a "oopsies!" moment and had to untangle

They are pretty familiar with where yarn comes from and even know the difference between synthetics and natural fiber, probably thanks to me being somewhat of a fiber snob.

They did however, want to know what an alpaca was. Loch even asked if it was "like a llama", which impressed me. I told him that it was similar to a llama and showed them a photo.

They liked this one because it looked like Sprocket!

I told them about the reason alpaca wool is superior to other wools, that alpacas are "new" to our country, and also filled them in on the differences between them and llamas, and they were pretty interested to learn that llamas are fierce guard "dogs"! I wish we lived somewhere they could experience them first hand, someday...

Speaking of Sprocket...

this is what happens to a herding dog with no JOB - worthless!

After that, it was all downhill. We had a dinner date with BFF and her kids last night after music lessons. While at lessons, Finn started complaining he was hungry and didn't look too good. We left there and just as we got out of the car at the restaurant I heard the characteristic belch and whipped a bag in front of his face just in time - sick! I have never had to deal with a child vomiting anywhere outside our own home, and I guess my lucky streak is over, and my friends who have are probably laughing at me now. I am prepared, though - every time I have been to the hospital for surgery (which is actually many times!) I snag every one of those blue sick bags and stash them. I've got a stash in my purse and in the car LOL. He actually had to use it yet again on the way home, another first for my car. I am however, very proud of him in that he never missed in the car or the house! When we got home he was so cute, he got the "sick chair" (beanbag) out of the closet, set it up in the bathroom with some books and his little stuffed penguin. He was sick about every 20 minutes from 6 pm until 12:50 pm - I remember the time since I didn't go to sleep until about 3 am for fear that I wouldn't hear him if he needed me, even though he was in bed next to me.

Here he is at about 9 pm, I was thankful he fell asleep but it didn't last long.

I'm not much for coddling my kids, but I felt really bad for him, they don't get sick often, so it really surprises and worries me. Luckily he was better this morning and I was able to get all surfaces in the house sprayed and wiped down, but when I moved on to the laundry...

P.O.S.!!!!! After 5 years of nothing but problems, it's officially dead. I'll be damned if I'm going to spend hundreds of dollars on "gotta order a part" for it to "not be fixed" yet again! This will have to wait for hubby to get back.

Which brings me to this...

The kids thought this was great fun... glad someone liked it. Earlier, I had Loch give me all his quarters and he made me write him and I.O.U., hahaha, but found that apparently laundromats have changed in the past 20 years LOL. Check out the above photo, see the card? Yep, it's a laundry "credit card". I had to swipe my credit card in a machine and it spits out a loaded prepaid "washing card". WTF?? I should consider myself lucky that we found a place in the "good side of da hood" to do our laundry. I had no idea where laundromats were even located at here until this, and lemme tell ya, it ain't good! It's not a college town here, either, so they are pretty much all located in "other parts of town". I guess I should consider myself lucky then that I don't have one in my neighborhood LOL.

So let's sum it up. As of today, we have one bad muffler on hubby's car - rendering it illegal for use, part of the backyard fence is broken, my car desperately needs new tires, washing machine is broken, sick kid, property taxes are due, and a partridge in a pear tree! But for some reason, I'm not freaking out. Last deployment I was beside myself with near panic attacks from all the stuff that broke down.

What's the difference this time? Knitting - and YOU! Seriously, I have been so busy knitting I'm just ignoring everything else, and last deployment, I wasn't blogging yet. I really feel you all have helped me stay connected in what otherwise is basically 7 months of being alone with 2 kids. Not going to get sappy, I'll save that for a post when I'm feeling sappy-ish... but thank you all for your blogging, commenting, and just being out there, it helps many more people than you think!

This time, I'm going to do what every irresponsible person would do: spend money on new tires, and get us home for the holidays for a much needed vacation. To hell with the rest for now!

My new outlook:
The washing machine is broken. So what? The world won't end, consider myself lucky there is such a thing as a laundromat, use it until hubby gets home and either fixes it or we find out how to buy another, cheaper, "old school" kind that actually works

The Forester's muffler is shot. Well, it's hubby's car, not mine. He's not even here right now.

The Outback needs tires - ok, I'll get them, I have over a month to do this, it'll work out.

Sick kid - yay! I'm thinking "better now than on vacation"!

Property taxes are due - yeah, whatever...

Don't feel bad for me, this is a breakthrough, I'm learning to cope! And before you think "what a string of bad luck...", it could be way worse, like last deployment when every major appliance in mine & my tenants house broke, my ceiling caved in (really!), and the siding and fence blew away in a hurricane. This stuff happens to every military spouse everywhere, everything always happens on deployment, I think it's a test of some kind. Well I'm going to pass it, damnit!

Come heck or high water (speaking of we are having tidal flooding LOL), we are going home for Christmas! When people ask "where are you going when you get through deployment?", instead of saying "Disneyworld!" like the commercials, we will reply "we're going to Minnesota!" - where "it could always be worse"... (probably only Minnesotans are going to get that LOL)

One coping strategy that is going to happen in 45 minutes: kids are going to bed early tonight!

So do I have the makings of a good ol' country sob song? :)


  1. You're probably handling all this better because it's happening near the end of hubby's deployment rather than at the beginning! But still, you get some gold stars for your wonderful attitude. I seriously don't know if I could handle a deployment of my spouse.

    Laughed out loud at the picture of Sprocket. That's a picture of a happy, well-adjusted neurotic dog.

    Oh, that poor baby Finn. Hope it's just the 24-hour dealie and he's fine by now. And didn't pass any germies on to his brother. Or you!!

    I'm totally with you on the super-duper front loading washers. Ours has exactly one more breakdown to go before it's ripped out and an old-fashioned top loader goes in. (Which is gonna be some feat in our teeny-tiny bathroom.)

    If I only had the talent, I'd set your blog to music. You are a wonder, Erin m'dear! Keep telling us all. It helps us feel better about our days!! ;o)

  2. M' car done died,
    'n' the pickup needs new tires.

    The front ones 'r' bald,
    'n' the back uns 'r' fried.

    M' kid took sick,
    'n' the other went to jail.

    My man done gone,
    'n' the roof caved in from hail.

    The fence is fallin' down,
    and we ain't paid 'r taxes.

    But we're headed to Minn'sota,
    Yah sure, you bet your ax . . . es.

    P.S. (Besides, it could always be worse!)

  3. I am having one heck of a time trying to comment....I will try this again! I have some pictures on my homeschool blog from a fieldtrip to an alpaca farm if you want to show the kids: http://fourlittlefeethomeschool.blogspot.com/search/label/alpaca

    Hang in there Erin, get your tires, get your alpaca yarn, and keep your chin up!! I don't know how you do it, and as you said- you ARE doing it. :)

    I swear appliances are just made to break these days. My front loader does a crappy job of washing compared to the old models, I may not get one again....the low water usage is not good for clothes needing a wash right? Sometimes I pull an item out and it is dry and dirty, somehow it gets socked in and avoids the cycles.

    Oh, and your poor kid! Nothing is worse than constant vomiting, I hope that will be the end of the stomach bugs for your house this season. We are a puky family, lol, everyone but my husband gets car sick, and vomits when stressed so I am AMAZED your car is just now getting christened. AMAZED.

  4. Alpaca thoughts.......tell the kids they spit when they get upset (similar to camels, but they blow mostly air so it is a fine mist), and we witnessed this firsthand one day, quite funny- the alpaca throws it's head back, spits, and all creatures great and small scatter like mad, lol. They generally don't like to be pet/handles as they are rather shy. The color is not predictable when they are bred *if* I remember correctly, so that is kind of a neat thing to know when it comes to the yarn.....so a brown alpaca may have a white or black baby.

    They go to the bathroom communally, they sort pick one spot and everyone waits their turn and goes, kind of like us ladies all heading to the loo together at a restaraunt. It is amusing to witness.

    They have coats put on in the cold weather, and in the summer they dislike the heat very much. The alpacas we visited have fans in their barn, and sprinklers in the pasture. they like to stand right over the sprinkler and enjoy a good hosing. :)

    That is all the fun fact I can remember off the top of my head, but I hope the kids get a kick out of it. Maybe I will post more pictures on my garden blog for you if there any funny ones I left out on the homeschool site.

  5. We-ell, fry m' chitlin's and twist m' nickers, Chickie Mama. Ah do buh-lieve you done put Ms. Erin on the Country Music map!

  6. I had hoped for nothing tragic, only funny! I have to say, I think you gave us both!!

    You are my kinda girl, know that? Really, what else can you do? You forgot to mention drinking, when do we start drinking???

    I think the yak in the back would have bothered me...blaaaaaaaaah! But you are a real trooper! And prepared!

    Just think of all the "fun" things poor hubby gets to come home to. At least he will know he is really loved or something close to that! :)

    Yeah, laundry on a card now. And then you probably will get stuck with the card and a positive balance on it that you wont want to use up because you'll have a new machine by then!

    MN...just keep your eye on the ball!! Or bottle, whichever you prefer.

    Loved Chicken Mama's song to you :)

  7. Sorry to hear that Finn wasn't feeling well. Poor little guy. That is so amazing that you had a barf bag in the car! Talk about being prepared! You're so amazing in all that you do with the kids, house, and garden while your husband is away. I would be in panic mode every day!

    My husband and I bought our first washer and dryer last year on Black Friday from Lowes. The prices were 40% off! Prior to that, we lived in apartment buildings and never had our own washer and dryer. We used to do laundry at the laundromat all the time, and it's not fun when you live on the 3rd floor with no elevator. So after 10 years of doing laundry at the laundromat, it was a blessing to have our very own washer and dryer. I hope yours is fixed soon!

  8. oh my y'all know how to put a smile on a girl's face! Chicken Mama, awesome LOL! Kelly, love all the fun facts! Will check out the site with the kids tomorrow. And don't you just love how "yucky" the seals get on front loaders? All that money spent so I can scrape goo out of the seals on a regular basis... someone in that industry is laughing all the way to the bank!

    APG, I think I can count on one hand the number of times I have thrown up in my life, so I was pretty freaked out the first time I had to deal with it with the kids, but when it's your kid you don't think about it, much to my surprise LOL

    Mama Pea, Finn is fine now, was back on regular diet by dinner and had scrambled eggs and a biscuit! I super-cleaned with clorox everywhere this morning, I just hope it wasn't too late. Loch was fine when he went to bed an hour ago, but I heard him crying/sniffling and I went in to see what was wrong and he said "I don't know"... that's how it started with Finn last night, he got real moody an hour before getting sick.... ugh!

    And Sprocket? I should drop her off at an alpaca farm, better yet, llamas, they'll give her a swift kick in the rear!

  9. Yup, I am back again. Forget that link- read the kids my 'fun facts' that I wrote above (cause I was too lazy to write them again), and then visit my blog, I did special post just for them with lots of alpaca farm pictures.

  10. Glad to hear everyone is pulling through. I hope Loch is well. This is one of those situations where "you do what you need to do". It's amazing what you can do when you have to. You are one strong country mama!
    Hang in there.

  11. Oh goodness Erin you have had a rough day of it! I remember when my kids were little and they seemed to get every stomach bug going. Between the two of them I was always cleaning up after one or the other. Now I keep a bucket in each of their bedrooms near their beds and we always have a plastic bucket in the car, mostly because they used to get motion sick in the car. The plastic ice cream bucket is easy to clean with a bit of bleach and dumped in the toilet. Thank goodness they've grown out of the pukes now and rarely get stomach bugs.
    I feel for ya on all the broken things. I have my own batch of broken things and my husband has no excuse why he doesn't fix them other than he can't cause he's not a handy type guy.
    You attitude is great and you'll get through whatever life throws your way.
    Love that picture of Sprocket! Such a funny dog.

  12. Dang girlfriend, you are an inspiration to all of us! Doesn't matter what it is, you get it done. :)

  13. meemsnyc, exactly! That's why I just chose to deal with this little inconvenience, many others do it all the time.

    Judy, when I look back at some of the things I've had to do, I admit it does amaze me. (one deployment I had to crawl under the house 5 or 6 months pregnant to fix the well pump and got kind of "stuck" in the crawlspace entrance LOL)

    Sparkless, yesterday I found one of the kids halloween plastic pails... it's now in the car! Hopefully we won't have to use it now that it's there! I know you definitely have your share of broken stuff too, I could have chosen to not blog about it, but I know there are others out there experiencing difficulty too, and it personally helps me to know that "I'm not the only one"! I try to keep things honest on here, I'm not supermom, we have our share of crappy days and broken stuff!

    Dani, thanks... I figured out long ago to just expect this stuff and it no longer hits me like a ton of bricks when it happens!

    Update, Loch is fine! Both kids are now chasing each other around the couch and throwing balls in the house at the dogs LOL

  14. You are one amazing gal-this is just "one of those days(months!)". You'll pull through with a whole lot of knitting, some good friends, and heck, a bottle if needed. And yes, country songs are made from times like this.
    A big hug for you. Kick your washer for me--I have a piece of SH*$ too!

  15. Why is it that all hell breaks loose when our hubby's deploy or are in the field???
    While my hubby was gone:
    somebody hit our car in a parking lot
    washer broke and flooded the kitchen
    vacuum cleaner died
    heater broke
    water heater broke
    7 month old daughter was very sick (throwing up) and passed it on to me
    no family nearby to help out...
    And those are just the first things that come to mind.
    Hopefully your little one is well again and you got the sickness out of the way for your trip home.
    Your dog cracks me up. We have a border collie and she is the most neurotic ocd dog EVER!

  16. Sounds like my life! If you get a new top loader don't buy the new water efficient ones, they are terrible. Ours only fills half way up with water but you are supposed to fill it to the top with clothes. I hate the thing and wish I would have purchased a regular one. Such is life.

  17. LOL - I'm from Missouri and we, too, know it could always be worse! But it's still bad, and you know, a little self pity never hurt anyone.
    But you fer shure, ain't wallerin' in it!
    And these comments are cracking me up, too! And, I try REALLY hard to truly appreciate my appliances when they ARE working. I also say nice things to them...Ryan and the kids think I'm crazy, but Sweet Sally (my minivan) just turned over 150k miles and is going strong. So they can think what they want! Sweet Sally and I know the truth. ;D

  18. I think I live by "it could always be worse" in so many ways!

    I've been through the 'sick in the car" thing more times than I care to count these last five or six years :( DD sometimes gets carsick, and since she can't tell me when she's not feeling "right" it always comes as a surprise. And usually when we're on the highway, 40 minutes into an hour-long drive, and there's no place good for me to pull over and clean up.

    When I got my front-loader three years ago I spent the extra $ and got an LG. Definitely not cheap, but (knock on wood) not a single problem! An Extra-High spin speed and a Sanitary cycle are definite pluses when you have to line-dry!

  19. Alison, that made me chuckle... if you notice, mine IS and LG! Out of 8 people I know that have them, you are the first that hasn't had any problems, so you must be treating it well :)

  20. Hm - not the same model as mine. I'll have to try and figure out which model I've got!

  21. Sue, I wonder if the "old skool" kind are even available anymore? I would go out looking this week except I said I wasn't going to worry about it right now, LOL!

    Anke, misery loves company! Every freaking deployment it's something, isn't it?! Glad to know you're out there "braving it" on the "back lines" with me!

    Melissa, I talk to my cars too! My Subarus all have names, and I stroke them gently on the dashboard when they are going through "the change" (they're all females, of course)!

    Alison, I wouldn't delve too deep and rock the boat, just know you are a very lucky girl and be happy about it!

  22. Erin,
    I just love reading your blogs...for so many reasons. I was a single mom of two boys for several years before I remarried. Mine are 10 and 13 so a little ahead in age compared to where you are now! I have so been there with my ever so affectionately named "little box house" (Ikea = friend). Now I have added two wonderful stepdaughters to our mix and a 5th....boy...oops, I mean husband!! He is wonderful but often traveling for work. He is my brilliant chemical engineer that really does not care for home projects. So they often fall to me...and that's okay cuz how cool is it when you "get er done!!" Very empowering!
    You go girl!! I just shake my head and laugh...we have been in so many similar places. The difference is, I do not have the skill or patience to do any needlework and I am equally incompetent in the kitchen. So I watch in amazement. Meals here are less exciting.... but that leaves more time for outside work and play! And I do work part time hours when kids are in school. This stuff in which you are in the midst....we call it "the good stuff". Over in the blink of an eye. Then those kiddos are grown and gone! Hang in there!?!?!

    Oh, and my van... her name is Ruby! We are a little at odds right now and it seems her days may be numbered....as are my days of driving a mini van. Been there and ready to be done with that! ugh.

  23. Jill, my subarus have always had nice Norwegian names like Olga or Helga LOL! I know what you mean about time flying - I usually have to beg my kids to try everything at dinner but tonight? - they ate like Minnesota farm kids, eating everything, wanting seconds, and drank a ton of milk! It seems they are turning into "big boys" overnight!

  24. You must send the request to all the song writers as you need to gather whole of the material then you must do like this.