Archive for the ‘I ain’t gonna be no SLAVE!’ Category

Paladin is off at therapy.  I just realized that I haven’t been here in like 2 weeks.  Ya’ll need a quick catch up.  So here goes: 

* We’re doing a menage a therapist thing now.  That’s right.  It takes 3 of them for us.  lol  Nah, it’s not quite that dire.  Dr. Mark went on a rotation for 2 months and handed us off to Dr. Max and Dr. Randy.  Dr. Randy is just for Paladin.  That was good because a fair amount of our time in therapy was being spent as one on one time between Paladin and the docs.  He needed his own thing for a while to sort through everything he’s gone through since his illness began all those years ago and to build this new life and find a direction for himself after his forced medical-retirement.  I kind of wish I were there though.  Paladin has significant short term memory loss, and I’m not there to be his short term memory bank.  As for Paladin and I, there are still issues but they are no longer BIG fights.  Just small quiet ones.  That’s progress.  Right?  Eh…

* Brian’s truck broke down and we spent several days shuttling his brother, Manjina around to temp jobs.  Manjina finally got enough cash together and the truck is back on the road… for now.  Brian’s step-brother, Ralph Jr., wants the truck back and since the VA has now taken Brian’s entire $900+ check, it’s a matter of time before the crap hits the fan on that one.  We’re keeping our fingers crossed that it happens off our property.

* The last kids weekend was spent coloring pumpkins (we’ll carve them this Saturday) and then Sunday after church, we had a picnic/tea party.  They had fun and I took a bunch of video for Youtube (honeywine2000 is the username if you’re curious) to send to the grandparents.  Paladin’s Dad got very emotional over the video.  He is a sweet man.  He and Paladin are both big ol’ girls.  🙂

* Here’s another kick in the lady balls for those of us with no children.  Did you know that if you’re married to someone on Social Security disability you only get benefits if you have children with them or are 62 or older?  Isn’t that lovely?  Doesn’t that fall under some sort of discrimination?  Seriously?

* Then Tina called asking if I’d talked to our Dad recently.  I haven’t.  Heck, I barely get the time to scratch my own butt half the time.  Tina couldn’t get anyone on the phone for a couple of days and finally started calling around.  Where was Dad?  JAIL!  Why?  Apparently, he and Step-slag got into it and he threatened to off himself.  She had the cops take him away.  I guess there’s a backlog of some sort because he’s been in jail a week now in protective custody waiting to see the regional head-shrinker.  Tina called Uncle Jim who lost his mind over this.  I was even surprised at the names he was calling the Step-slag.  At any rate, the last I heard a few of my uncles were getting together to go break him out.  Tina, Uncle Jim, and I have all offered to put him up over here.  Step-slag isn’t answering at their place in Mississippi and for all we know, she’s jumped ship with the contents of the house.  I guess he’s taking too long to kick the bucket.  All those multiple insurance policies must be getting expensive to keep up.  So, I guess I’ll find out eventually what’s going on there. 

* We’re also busting our humps to get everything around here done in preparation for spending more than 2 weeks in San Antonio starting the middle of next week.  A lot of it is that little stuff you do to get ready for winter like build a dog house and take out the air conditioners and repair a broken window.  But, when you’re trying to get all of that done, keeping several medical appointments, taking care of the kids, and taking care of paper work (Paladin is still trying to get his TDY crap fixed…we decided to get an advance for the trip because they’re backed up on TDY payoffs to the point that if we’re lucky we’ll get our last 2 TDY payments sometime in 2010), it all gets to the point where you don’t know what you’re doing from one minute to the next.  I haven’t even thought about what to pack yet!  And then there was special paperwork.

Yep, it took us forever and a day, but we finally got wedding 2 done.  🙂  I think it was my favorite.  It was sweet and simple and something of an international affair at that!  We just headed up to Natchitoches to Front Street and had the parish Justice of the Peace meet us there.  Front Street has such great scenery and even though it was a wet morning, we got great pictures.  We even had a local photographer who is also the Cane River Heritage Area office manager pop out and take a few pics for us and she posted them online here.  Then an older gentleman popped out and took our picture telling us that he only spoke French.  Before I could use my extremely limited high school French to ask “French Canadian or France?”, he disappeared.  Then when we went into the Les Saison candy shop for our wedding dessert (handmade chocolate truffles…mmm…so good…I get at least one every time I go), we were congratulated by a gal from London.  We were a real sight, I guess, because people were stopping and waving.  I do love living in the South sometimes.  🙂  Everyone seemed so happy to see us everywhere we went.  I would have thought they’d be jaded seeing people taking wedding pictures all the time on Front Street.  It was truly lovely.  It made me wish I’d skipped the first wedding and just had this one.  We had lunch at The Landing and then before heading home, Tina and I went into the local Goodwill.  If we were a sight on Front Street, we must have been something else at the Goodwill!  lol  One lady stopped me and asked if I was buying my dress because she was putting on a bride of Christ passion play.  😀  I’ll say it again:  I love the South.  Just to put the cherry on top of such a Southern experience, I bought several pairs of tap shoes for my Borrowed Girls (they look just like plain mary janes and I was desperate to find them inexpensive dress shoes for the holidays).  On the way back, we stopped at the Nat’l. Guard Armory and Tina dropped off the last of the ex-husband’s things (he’d left some stuff including his paternal grandfather’s coins behind and I wanted to make sure he got them before they deploy in the next couple of months) and he told her that his maternal grandfather died back in May shortly after he’d moved out.  I feel really sorry for them.  I loved his grandfather.  I really did.  Then, after all of that, we stopped at Mom’s to drop Tina off.  I wish I’d had the camera running because Mom was so happy she was about to jump out of her skin.  She said, “So now I really CAN say that they’re my grandkids!”  I just told her that I thought she already was.   They’ve been calling her Grandma for months now.  It was just a really happy day.  And here’s the proof:






My fancy shoes!





Of course, if you’re on my Facebook, there should have been a link to all the photos over on Walmart’s site.  I won’t even lie and begin to promise to talk to everyone any time soon.  I’m hoping that with all the down time stuck in the hotel room in San Antonio that I can catch up for a while at least.  I’ll talk to you soon-ish though!  🙂

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I just put this up on Facebook and I wanted ya’ll to see it to.  It’s a sucky post but it’s the best I can do at the moment.  I miss you and thanks for thinking about me (especially you, Heather  🙂  ) and for still looking at this thing.  If you have Facebook, please add me (Anna Lee Meade from Alexandria, LA).  I’m not abandoning the blog…yet.  It’s just that I need to consolidate for now.  I’m going to try to come back here in the next couple of weeks to put up pics of the dresses etc.  Anyhow…here is the so-called “short” version…



First, THANK YOU for all of the lovely birthday wishes.  I do appreciate them.  Although I didn’t get on Facebook, I did check my email twice in the last month.  What?  That’s some kind of speed record for me!  😉  I wanted you to know that I got them and that I felt very cared for when I saw that even though I’ve been MIA for months you haven’t forgotten about me.


For those of you who don’t know, my mother had a bad fall at the end of June.  She fell in her kitchen while she was alone and broke her left femur, her right wrist in 2 places, and her right shoulder.  Mom has been shuffled from hospital to hospital for the last 2 months.  The break in her left femur became infected and she had a second surgery to take care of that.  She got home this last weekend, but we’re still watching for infection.  All in all, she is doing much better even though she is still on a wound vac.  And for any of you behind the Obama health plan, just keep in mind that the current system is what kept Mom being shuffled around and kept Tina in doctors offices for TWO DAYS just to get her 15 prescriptions filled; that’s the plan they want to tighten the controls on.  And, yes, Mike has read the actual plan and kept me well-informed on it.


And that was the easiest part of my last 2 months…


Also, for those of you who don’t know or haven’t noticed (and I’m not trying to make you feel bad about it because I’ve been living under a rock!  🙂  ), I’m getting married!  I’m marrying Michael Bradley Jackson on September 4th if the good Lord’s willin’ an’ the creeks don’ rise!  This has been made more hectic and more interesting by the fact that Mike has 5 children.  Yeah, I said FIVE from the age of 3 to 16 and only one boy in the bunch.  His ex has been neglecting them and treating them like a three year old with a formerly well-loved doll; she loves them but ignores them the vast majority of the time.  Recently, her neglect has taken a very serious turn.  For months, we had been trying to get it through to her that the 3yr. old is supposed to have a poop more than once a week.  A couple of weeks ago, we ended up taking the baby to the ER twice (first visit the doc gave her a suppository and a 10gram dose of laxative…17grams is the adult dose…and it didn’t work).  On the second ER visit, Mike’s ex showed up with military police and tried to prevent him from getting the baby care.  It didn’t come out in her favor, but the cop flat out told us to call CPS on her.  We have.  That was over a week ago and CPS hasn’t even interviewed anyone.  So, yeah, we’re a bit preoccupied with that.  If that’s not enough, this Monday is Mike’s final divorce proceeding (it was supposed to be in June but his ex didn’t bother to file the final motion…his lawyer had to do it).  Because his divorce isn’t final and a crap storm may hit with CPS at any moment, the wedding invitations won’t go out until after Monday.  Yep, with luck I’m marrying Michael Jackson next month.  And, yeah, I’m pretty sure we’ve heard all the jokes.  😉  But this Jackson is so white he can’t moonwalk.  Did I mention that I’m making all of the dresses and all of the flower arrangements and we haven’t found an officiant or found a cake or bought rings yet???  Breathe…


Finally, I’ve just been informed that with the state budget cuts in health care I will be losing work hours…over HALF of my work hours.  I’m tied up in knots about it, but Mike’s all, “We’re doing great.”  He’s right.  Our income, I should say HIS income, finally leveled out this last month, and now he’s making about $300 more a month than when he was in the Army.  It turns out that a brain tumor is profitable, but only if you live through it.  The VA ended up rating him something like 240% disability, but they only pay the 100% which is still very good.  But, I don’t like that I’m not contributing as much as I used to even if it’s nothing compared to his.  The worst part is that because of the nature of the job.  I’m still going to be doing the same amount of work.  It’s just going to be done out of the goodness of my own heart now.  😦


There were lots of little day to day kicks to the gut around here recently, but these three things are what have kept me hopping and running to keep up with my life for months now.  Mostly it’s the kids that have kept me running.  We’ve had them most of July and part of August.  I love these babies to death, but every time we have them, we find out more about how crappy their lives are.  It’s been one long festival of this ex trying to take the 14yr. old boy out of school to take care of the 3yr. old (which was a long battle, but thankfully, he’s in school now) and right after the ER thing, we found out that she’s been letting the 6yr. old sleep with her and her boyfriend most nights.  Where the heck is CPS?  They know all of this and more and they are still not showing up.  Now, you know the real reason I haven’t been online.  If I stay online like this I’ll keep talking to everyone and these bustles will not get finished today and I’ve got about 2 weeks and my dress hasn’t really been started.  Life is hard.  No doubt about it.  I would love nothing more than to be able to catch up with ya’ll, and I hope I can some day soon.  In the meantime, I’ll at least try to show up once in a blue moon to share and peek at your lives.


Give me your addresses to get your invites!!!  Oh, and if you know I have your address, confirm it anyhow, pretty please?  I have the most messed up address book!  lol


Talk to you as soon as I can!  Oh and when you don’t get on this enough, you find weird pics like people petting parrots that may or may not be ceramic.  This disturbs me…


Hugs, Anna

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I’m not here.  Remember that!  Don’t tell anyone!  We’re ripping out the shower at Brian’s and that means that in a few days I will no longer be bi-parish/county.  I’ll be in Deridder full time!  W00t!  No more traveling constantly back and forth.  Just the nice slow routine of the retired and the disabled to look forward to.  That sounds like absolute heaven!  I do so love a routine.  Sad, I know.  But, I totally do!  Unfortunately, in order to get there I have to go through hell first.  I have to go pack 28 plus years of brik-a-brak.  

We’re hoping that by Monday it will all be over with, but since Paladin is retiring today, everything on all fronts is a shambles!  Paladin’s retirement pay is screwed up already and we’re having to juggle to get everything paid especially Mull.  That’s the last person you want to have to short.  I’ll sell my blood before we’ll delay that payment!  She’s already started crap this week and we don’t even have the kids until Friday.  She had Bell calling up at 7 am on Saturday morning begging to keep this stray dog she’d found.  No way.  We already have Sally, Sam, Pascal and a cat.  Plus, Brian has his brother’s dog and a cat.  We’re starting to look like a rescue shelter as it is.  Oh wait, I forgot.  We’ve killed all their pets.  I’m not sure if Mull’s plan was to just aggravate us with that one or to see if Paladin would confirm that Sally and Sam are still alive.  Poor Paladin, he hates telling the kids “no” about anything especially when his daughter’s on the phone pleading, “But they’ll kill it at a shelter and he’s really cute.”  Oh how I wish there were a pill to eliminate the guilt complex for a few hours!  I got on the phone and told her, “If you ‘taught’ this dog to sit and stay in 10 minutes, it’s probably someone’s dog that they’ve lost; and, if not, then you need to take it to the shelter at the end of our street which is a ‘no kill shelter’.”  Ok, so I said it nicer than that, but there was no way that was going to happen.  The last thing we need is an attack of “just one more” syndrome.  That’s how you get 5 kids in the first place!  But, it didn’t keep Paladin from wringing his hands for hours because he had to disappoint her.  I can’t even blame Mull too much because she was just playing her usual game; it was a no-lose for her.  However, Bell is 16 and she was playing her own version of the guilt game just hoping that she’d play the odds and win.  That sickens me a little bit.  I know A LOT of people who play that game their whole lives, but I really didn’t want to see her be one of them.

You’d think that I’d be ranting about having to glue the plumbing pipe to the new shower twice or spilling the pipe primer on my newly laid vinyl floor (fyi, no, bright purple does not blend into faux sand beige rocks…grrr..) or the 10 zucchini that I picked in the first 2 days of harvesting them (which means I’m already drowning in zucchini that’s waiting to be canned or frozen and that there will be TONS more to follow) or ripping out walls and carrying heavy ass handicap accessible showers over half the countryside.  Oh yeah, that’s what I’m supposed to be doing.  I think I hear screaming.  I’d better go.  Monday, I left them alone to put up a wall and Will hit Dave in the head with a 4lb. sledge hammer!  It’s a good thing we have exceptionally hard heads in our family!  lol Ron, why didn’t you remind me of the horrors of home improvement!?!  Oh well at least Paladin and I are beating the ‘renovation leading to divorce’ statistics.  We can’t get a divorce over home renovation, but I guess we could break up over it.  Hmmm…we are divorcing other people though; so maybe that’s just getting it out of our systems?  (speaking of divorce, why have I had more contact with M.’s family in the last 3 weeks than I had in the entire 3 YEARS we were married???  WTH? I don’t want him to get rolled by ho’s either but that doesn’t mean I’m going to take him back…and wasn’t I that bitch he was supposed to be getting away from?) At least our renovation seems unlikely to break Paladin and I since we were putting up paneling and making out after each piece went up correctly.  Don’t try to figure out how much kissing that is because much like my measurements it will probably be just a tad off.  As Paladin has learned to say, “Moulding will fix it.”  But, it won’t keep the Brothers from taking the sledge hammer to MY head if I don’t go help take out that shower!  I better get with it.   Hopefully the next time you see me online, it will be for a long relaxed stay.  Byes!


P.S.- I sucked it up and deleted at least a few of those blogroll slackers (mostly the big names that have gotten too big to keep up with little ol’ me…I’m happy for their blog success, but I’m done advertising for them unless they start showing up here again).  I don’t know if I’m done deleting yet.  Some of those are going to get a second chance in the coming weeks.  I can’t blame them for not coming to see mine when I’m not going to there’s as often as I’d like, right?  Or, I’m too soft hearted.  Oy.  Life.

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It was her stolen idea, and now, I’ve stolen it.  Just a bunch of lazy thieves around this place, I tell ya!  I have two great reasons: I have extra time for a short post.  And, I do have a few things on my chest.  I usually just spit it out, but I’m really good at hiding things from the people I’m in a relationship with and those I love.  I’m not sure if its a byproduct of being a woman or of being a fat woman.  It sometimes seems like those of us in the dreaded “fat” club (and I’ve known skinny girls in it too) just don’t always feel able to speak up to those we love or those we want to love us.  So here goes…

Ten Things I Wish I Could Say to Certain People- (I’m not going to bother with the disclaimer.  Feel free to guess the person in question.  It will be like a game show!)

  1. I faked it every…single…time.
  2. I was told it was an olive branch.  I just want to stick it up your whooha and make tapenade!
  3. I almost cried when I realized that I had a grandpa again.  You’re one of the few reasons that I’m sorry its over.
  4. You’re a teenager.  I don’t care what you tell yourself or how old you are physically.  You ARE a teenager.
  5. I’m not sorry it’s over.  It’s actually a relief in some ways.  I’ll regret it, but I also breath easier.
  6. I have wiped your ass.  You should never speak to me in less than the nicest of tones.
  7. Are you ever going to tell him that the REAL reason you waited so long is you are absolutely shallow in every sense of the word?
  8. I know what he said to you.  You and I both know it wasn’t an accident.
  9. YES!  It is a sore point.  It always will be and I’d think that after I’ve told you that in every subtle way I can that you’d get the clue.  You’re not stupid.  Are you just playing dumb?
  10. You have completely devolved and I don’t know who you are anymore.  I don’t think I want to know either.  I’m sorry, but I think it was meant to happen because we just don’t fit anymore.

Maybe I should have just written about the Gosselins or Rachael Ray?  I can’t stand either one of them.  Ahhh…celebrities…the last people we’re allowed to bash.  I love them so.  You can’t just say to someone, “You suck as a parent and I wish your kids would get put in foster care because they’re bound to do better than you even in that system!” in real life.  Why not?  Because that’s irresponsible.  If I said everything I wanted to say to the people in my life?  I’d be one lonely hermit which is the same thing everyone else would be.  Stupid society and it’s rules of behavior.  Bah!

I can say things like:

Octomom, you’re an idiot.  Didn’t you know America only likes people who have 8 kids AND a husband?  There has to be someone around to hit in the head when things are going wrong!  And would it kill you to drag everyone to church constantly to show just how much you believe in God?  See, then you wouldn’t have to be nice to the people around you.  I know, Angelina gets by without going, but she’s also spreadeagled over Brad Pitt every time you turn around.  She gets a free pass.  You’ve got to aim lower…cable television lower.

But, I can only say it to celebrities.  I can’t tell every whore I know, “You keep going to church and announcing it to everyone around you like you’re curing cancer.  Why is that?  Ok, so you went to church.  None of the messages are creeping in.  That just makes me think there’s something wrong going on in that church.”  Seriously, why is it that the biggest whores I know are constantly headed to church?  Do they even make it in the doors without feeling a little electrical shock?  Or, do they get side tracked by the pretty lights and the shiny pole on their way there?  What is up with that?

Obviously, I had extra time on my hands here.  Don’t you miss those days when I had tons of extra time and could write this sort of stuff constantly?  If so, then you really must be bored too.  🙂  Some people aren’t bored enough though.  That blogroll on the side there is going to be pared down one of these days.  There are few things lower than the blogger who shows up just long enough for you to add them to your blogroll and then disappears.  I realize some people blog for the camaraderie and to build friendships.  I guess I do to some extent, as well.  The truth is that I like the distance sometimes.  I love knowing all of you.  It’s just that life inside this box gets to feeling too tight.  The human contact thing is slightly important to me.  I’ve never been all touchy-feely but human connection is vital to everyone.  On the one hand, I don’t feel the need to forward ya’ll emails about soldiers fighting in their underwear, but on the other hand, I would like to go beyond the homepage especially when you’re hurting or going through something you are trying desperately to handle.  The truth is I’d rather you just pick up the phone.  Remember those quaint pieces of machinery?  I’ve never had any intention of saving the world, but I always want to be a safe place to fall.  So, if I don’t get on your site constantly, it’s not that I’m not thinking about you.  If I’m not emailing you twice a day and sitting on Yahoo Messenger stalking you, you might just have to live with that.  I’m still around.  I’m just difficult to reach.  Oh, and Der Stalker, I changed my phone number.  Everybody else can have the new one though!  🙂

Go on.  Say something without fear of retribution.

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Me:   Who’s there?

Indy:  Indy!  *giggle*

lol That’s what a fair amount of my weekend sounded like.  🙂  I love that little Indy thinks I’m her joined-at-the-hip playmate, but I think I’ll enjoy it more when she understands how the knock-knock joke works.  lol


I haven’t posted because things have been far too insane. 


Last week, Dave, Paladin and I took Brian to town to arrange for deferments for several of his payments because of the cut in his VA benefits which began immediately despite the letter the VA sent stating that it wouldn’t start until June.  When we brought Brian home, we discovered that the Sheriff’s department was looking for Manjina and had 2 warrants out for him stemming from unpaid child support.  As we were getting ready to leave for the day, Manjina called from the jail.  Earlier that morning, I had told his on-again, off-again girlfriend where he would be, and Brian, who doesn’t care for her much, automatically assumed she had tipped off the cops.  Brian’s stepbrother, current owner of Brian’s residence, made it clear that Manjina would not be allowed back in the residence, and by the next day his stepbrother began clearing out the property.  The day before this happened Brian had asked me about Paladin’s offer to have him move in with us, and I assured him that it was still on the table.  After Manjina’s incarceration, Brian has decided to go ahead and take us up on our offer.  So, this week we will be starting the renovations to make our home handicap accessible.  In the middle of all of this, my head supervisor out of Shreveport came through to go over Brian’s Plan of Care and we explained the situation to her; she assured us that its not a problem for Brian to live with us and that my job will not be affected. 


As for who tipped off the po-po, Manjina’s girlfriend has been pulling every string she can to try to get him out, and at one point Brian turned to me and said, “I don’t know if it’s love, but she’s killing herself working for him.”  I reminded him that I like her.  She’s a hard worker and a go-getter and she pushes Manjina to do what he needs to do.  She’s a good woman.  As for the tipster…my bet is on Mar.  I think Mar thought it would be the prime opportunity for her to worm her way in here.  Her reaction to the “surprising news” was also very suspicious as in she wasn’t surprised at all and seemed to be fishing to see if anyone knew how they’d found Manjina.  Hmmm…  I’m guessing it’s killing her that Brian will be moving far away from here.  Or should that be “far away from her”?


So, probably before June 1st, I will be living at the Deridder house full-time.  The good news about that is I will be able to be online a lot more!  w00t!  I seriously miss being here, and I miss it even more now that more than half of my local girlfriends have left Ft. Polk.  It’s unfortunate, but it’s the nature of living near an Army base.  😦  Girl’s Night hadn’t been the same since the men had come back from Iraq, but at least we still got to see each other.  Now, nearly all of them have been reassigned to different bases around the world.  Our last Girl’s Night was poorly attended, but I was really there to see Rachel and the kids before they left for Missouri.  We spent over an hour in the parking lot hugging and laughing.  Dave and Will came by while we were outside and Rachel had to go joke with them for about 20 minutes.  I guess I’m going to have to get over my aversion to using my Facebook and Myspace accounts because like many young people that’s Rachel’s favorite way of staying in touch.  *sigh*  And, yeah, I know I sounded totally old saying that.  *crotchety old lady voice*  You little whipper-snappers get off my lawn!


I truly appreciate your suggestions concerning our custody issues.  I took them to heart and have spent two days going over my personal correspondence and the blog in order to piece together a log of our custody issues.  Of course, this was partially spurred by more ugliness over the weekend.


We had a lot of things happen over the last week and over the weekend with Mull.  After she kept the children from going to the zoo with us, we decided to keep the children over Spring Break but only on our terms.  As it turned out, she refused any contact with us over Spring Break. 


By Thursday night, Paladin prepared for war and when he contacted Mull to pick the kids up for his regular visitation, he was prepared to tell her that if she tried to prevent his visitation that the police would become involved.  Fortunately, Mull eagerly agreed to the schedule and he didn’t have to make that threat.  I’m guessing that hanging out with five kids wasn’t her boyfriend’s idea of a good vacation especially since he turned 26 on that Friday according to the kids (Mull is 35).  Hey, I guess even a blind guy notices five kids after spending a week with them.  Can’t keep them quiet forever.  The duct tape glue wears loose.


Friday night was pretty quiet really.  Blondie had a headache, but she recovered after a small dose of children’s ibuprofen was put down her.  We blindfolded Bell and brought her into her party room (soon to be Brian’s studio) to give her our family gifts while Tina, Dave, and Will were there.  She got a ton of Goth accessories from Tina & my family, a glam Goth bracelet from me, and a tiger print mini-skirt from Paladin along with a pair of shoes to replace her extremely worn-out favorite flats.  She loved it all and the room.  I had taken the blue Christmas lights I had bought for the wedding (50 cents each at after Christmas sales…I’m planning to use them to light the trees in the back yard for that fairy effect) and lined the entire room in them.  I took one set and wrote her name on one wall in lights.  We borrowed Brian’s 32 inch flat screen tv for the party which turned out to be a great blessing.  The original party was meant to be a “water” party because they had so much fun playing with the water balloons at the BBQ that Bell wanted to do that for her birthday too.  But it POURED the rain all weekend long.  Instead, I had about a dozen Goth kids in one room.  When we weren’t looking they went out and ran in the rain.  When we got them back inside they played Twister and then watched bad horror flicks (“American Zombie”, I want that hour of my life back!).  It was probably all for the best because I ended up being the party overseer all by myself. 


Before the party, Savvy complained of an earache twice.  I was pretty sure she was just seeking attention, but to be safe I insisted she take some ibuprofen and lie down.  When she didn’t make too much of a fuss about it, I figured it was better to be safe than sorry.  I told Paladin to take her to the ER and I’d hold down the fort.  He got back just before the party ended.  As it turned out, she did not have an ear infection.  It’s likely that she agreed to lie down because she relishes the extra attention.  But, the doctor did say she had an upper respiratory infection (aka a common cold) and possible allergies and the doc prescribed Motrin and a nasal spray but decided that an anti-biotic wasn’t necessary. 


As usual, we learned a lot of little tidbits from the kids.  Bell told us that Blondie and Savvy have both begun wetting the bed at Mull’s, but we’ve been checking their beds and they’re staying dry here.  That seriously worries me.  Bed wetting can be a sign of anxiety in young children.  But, I also wouldn’t be surprised if there was some sleep apnea involved because these children snore loudly.  Still, it doesn’t explain why they are bed wetting at home and not here.


Then, while making pancakes for breakfast on Saturday, Blondie piped up and said, “Mom never makes us breakfast!”  They had been at home all week for Spring Break and I asked them what they’d been eating.  They told me they “put peanut butter on bread” and Blondie said “I get salami out of the fridge.”  Ask me how pissed I was!  All five of these children have had a hot breakfast EVERY single day they have been with us at the Deridder house except ONE morning when they asked for some of my cold cereal.   So I said, “But Mom gets up and takes care of you right?”  Blondie and Savvy were both answering back and forth and it went something like this:  “Mom is sleepy.”  “Bell is supposed to take care of us.”  So I asked them, “What about Indy?”  They told me that Indy doesn’t sleep in Mom’s room anymore; she sleeps in the living room or in their bed.  So I said, “But what about when you go to school?”  They answered that “Mom leaves her door open so she can hear Indy.”  If I was pissed before, just guess what I was thinking by the end of that conversation!  This kind of stuff kept coming up all weekend and HELL YES I MADE NOTES!  We knew Bell was bearing the brunt of the parenting at Mull’s but we had no idea how much.  The next morning I was talking about Indy’s need to be potty trained (she’s beyond ready…she tells you when she needs to go and gets on the toilet by herself) when Bell told me that Mull has been having Indy wear the panties I sent home with them but she’s doing it to save diaper money.  Then Bell complained, “but then I have to take her to the bathroom every few minutes.”  Not much of a life for a 16 yr. old.  I too was a parent figure at that age, and although I took a lot of pride in it, I also didn’t have to care for 3 kids under the age of 8.


Things just seem to be quickly going down hill with Mull.  The girl’s new underwear is still missing a MONTH after I sent them home with them and Mull just says she doesn’t know where they are and they’re still showing up with the same 3 pair of stained underwear they’ve been wearing for the last 6 months.  Four months after she first mentioned it, Savvy’s hearing aids still have not been fixed, and it’s a Tricare service; it doesn’t cost her a single DIME!  Poor Savvy keeps showing us her cavity, which is getting much deeper, and asking us to make a dentist appointment for her, and when we talk to Mull about it, she says, “It’s costs too much.”  When Paladin offers to pay the co-pay for it (about $150 according to Mull…Savvy also pointed to the new NintendoDSi commercial and told me that “Mom has that”…Walmart.com has the game for $199…I guess her toy is more important than Savvy gumming her food), she counters with, “It takes months to get an appointment.”  Bull!  Pure BULL!  I called the dentist’s office myself yesterday and they had appointments for after-school for 3 days this week and assured me that they didn’t have to hold treatment for Tricare participants.  I knew that before I called the dentist (so does Mull…she’s used them before), but I wanted to double check and to make a note of it in the Custody Log.  Mull also sent Savvy back with her Easter dress shoes because according to Savvy, “Mom says they’re too big and they look ugly with socks.”  So Savvy wasn’t allowed to wear her shoes with her Easter dress, and since I haven’t seen these kids in a single dress shoe, I’m guessing she went in her dirty sneakers.  For the record, when Savvy tried the shoes on they were a bit loose, but the smaller size was too tight and since I’d just bought her new socks I had told her she could wear them with the socks.  Martian has his own issues and Saturday he had to be forced to take a bath (he admitted that he hadn’t had a shower since Wednesday) and later that weekend he mentioned to Paladin that Mull had used a “wooden spoon” in regards to discipline but we never got the full story.  Frankly, things just got deeper as if a bad mothering hurricane was tearing through this week.


Saturday morning while I was cleaning up breakfast, Paladin and I found out that the little girls didn’t know about the divorce.  I guess telling your kids something like that just isn’t necessary in Mull’s book.  So we spent about 5 minutes explaining what it was and that it wasn’t a big deal and that nothing was changing from the way it was right now.  It didn’t seem to phase them at all and I was glad of that.  All they’ve been saying for months is that “Dad left” and I constantly correct them.  When asked, they know that “Mom took us to the hotel.”  I really HATE that Mull tells these kids that their father left them when it is the most untrue thing in the world.  He’s done everything he could to be there for them all along including asking Mull to come back knowing she was pregnant with yet another child that wasn’t his.


Just when I thought the day couldn’t get any longer, Saturday, after Bell’s party, we put the Borrowed Girls to bed in their room.  Begin the saga!  It’s been going the same way at least one night out of every visit for the last 2 months:  Savvy goes to sleep with no trouble at all.  About 1am, Savvy starts coming into our room and continues to do so every hour for the rest of the night until I give up and sit in her bedroom and make her keep her head on her pillow.  After that, she’s dead to the world.  So, it’s not that she’s not sleepy; she just seems to wake up and wants to be up wandering around.  I thought maybe she was afraid of the dark, and she has used that as an excuse but she has a different reason for wanting to be up every time.  To cut her off at the pass, we had put up blinds with curtains over top of them, we’d put in a nightlight (which was useless because there’s so much light from the porch and street light that you can barely see it), and we’d given Savvy a flashlight.  All of it was useless.  The next morning I found out why.  Bell told us that Savvy has been doing this at Mull’s too.  She goes into Mull’s room and Mull tells her to go get in bed with Bell (we make her stay in her own bed).  According to Bell, when Savvy goes to school she tells the teachers that she’s ‘sick’ but what she really means is that she’s sleepy.  Because of school policy, they send Savvy home and Mull let’s her sleep on the sofa.  Bell says that this has become a habit with them.  Because Savvy is being counted at attendance in the morning, she’s not on the absent rolls, but she is missing school.  So, later this week (Paladin has appointments today and tomorrow), Paladin is going to stop by their schools and find out the in’s and out’s of what’s going on with ALL of the school-age children (we already know that Marvin has missed all the school days that he can).  Mother of the year, I tell ya…


Sunday wasn’t that bad.  I put Savvy on punishment because during her night tirade she had woke both Blondie and Indy by screaming that she didn’t want to stay in bed and had taken apart Indy’s sippy cup.  I made her write 30 lines saying “I will stay in my bed all night and I will not wake up other people at night”, and I wouldn’t let her play on the computer at all.  When she complained, I told her that the punishment was for our house and that she could ask Mom if she could play on the computer when she got back to Mull’s trailer park.  She replied, “But Mom’s always on the computer; she doesn’t let us use it.”  Boy, that picture just keeps getting clearer, don’t it?


I wouldn’t bank on Mull being off the computer any time soon, Savvy.  When Mull showed up to pick the kids up on Sunday evening, she pulled out the b**ch fit card.  Paladin came inside all flustered asking me about these imitation-Lego blocks that Mull sends with the kids sometimes.  I told him that they hadn’t brought them.  He looked anyhow, but they just weren’t there.  He went out and told Mull that if we found them, that we’d bring them to her.  Mull told him that she wanted those blocks and she wasn’t leaving until she got them.  He came back to look again, and I started getting hot under the damned collar let me tell ya.  Like I’m hiding children’s blocks!  That’s right!  I plan to retire on selling used $20 bags of imitation Legos, b**ch!  He looked again and still no blocks.  This time when he went out she made the teenagers get out of the van to go look for them.  I stayed in the house because if I’d went outside I’d have a cut a b**ch fo sho!  I sent him outside and told him to go take up the laundry list of crap she needed to address (all that stuff up top there) and I’d help the teens look.  Sanjaya2 was with them and he said, “She seems to have had a really bad day today.”  That’s about the nastiest thing that boy has probably EVER said in his life; he’s that sweet.  I replied, “I’ll bet.”  By the time, the kids came back out, she was more than ready to leave because she ducks any discussion of her parenting like Willie Nelson tries to outrun the IRS.  The long and short of the block epic is that 20 minutes later when Paladin called the kids had found them sitting in their bedroom the entire time.  Hand to God, if I’d went outside, the cops would have been called.  I wanted to call them immediately but Paladin doesn’t want to have to go there until there’s no other choice. 


My best guess on Mull’s meltdown?  I’m guessing that a week spent with five kids in a trailer makes it very clear to a 26 yr. old blind guy that EVEN HE CAN DO BETTER.  Since she drives him back to college every Sunday before she picks up the kids, I’m guessing that Mull and Jeremy either fought or broke up.  I hope for his sake it was the latter.  Either way, I’m guessing she will be online hunting for another baby daddy line up this week.  Mull likes to hedge her bets.  In her line of work, you have to.


At any rate, that’s my life of the past week or so.  Crazy.  Just pure crazy.  Tomorrow night, we’re sending the Custody Log to Paladin’s Dad who works in child support enforcement in Oregon.  I don’t know if all of this stuff is enough to get Child Services involved, and we want his opinion and that of his contacts.  We’re also taking copies of it into Paladin’s lawyer and pushing him to get off his ass or we’re going to have to get a new ambulance chaser.  We also have to start the renovations on Thursday.  It’s all too complicated and it barely leaves me enough time to scratch my ass much less get online.  I have pics waiting to be posted, but I have to get my software reloaded on the computer at work.  We’ll see how much of a slave driver Paladin is this weekend.  Maybe I’ll get to be online at home!  🙂


*sigh*  Try not to forget me.  I won’t forget you.  I’ll be around when I can and in a few weeks, we’ll be together again.  😉


P.S.- Maricel, point taken.  I haven’t updated my About Me page and I so totally have put that on the list.  Of course it’s number 195 on the list.  So, it may be a while…

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I haven’t posted in a week, but not for lack of trying.  There has been A LOT happening on ALL fronts.  But, I’ll start with the easy stuff.  The day after I wrote that last post I got online at work to catch up with all of you.  I got halfway through my blogroll when the boss sent me off to town.  The next day when I got to work Manjina told me my computer had another virus.  Boy, he did it right that time!  This virus wouldn’t let you online at all and you couldn’t even run any anti-virus or anti-spyware programs.  I had no choice but to wipe the entire hard drive.   Yeah, that’s about as much fun as it sounds.  It took 2 work days for me to wipe the drive and reload the basic programs.  I haven’t even put MS Word or Picasa back on it yet.  I’m not even going to load Yahoo Messenger because I’m pretty sure that’s how he got the virus in the first place.  His Yahoo accounts have been getting hijacked for months with the hijacker changing his password and sending out messages as him.  Going by the messages, it’s obviously a vindictive ex-girlfriend or someone related to them.  I tell ya.  Here’s a clue Manny.  STOP HANDING OUT YOUR PASSWORD LIKE IT’S CANDY!  And how about you don’t add everything with a female name that asks to be added?  Not so hard really.  At any rate, if you thought I just didn’t care or skipped your blog intentionally, SO NOT TRUE.  Somewhere in the middle of all of this, there was a kids weekend, my relatives came, Rachel got her PCS orders, and Tina had a minor celebrity sighting.  So let’s hit this…


When Mull dropped the kids off on Friday, she and Paladin got into it over me.  It started innocently enough.  She sent them with a ton of craft stuff for the weekend.  When they came through the door, Blondie was gushing over it telling me how “Mom said we can do this here.”  I told her in my smiling, sweet, not-on-your-life voice, “Nope.  You can do that at Mom’s.  I have stuff to do this weekend.”  Mull was still outside giving Paladin a schedule for Spring Break (but I’ll get into that later).  So, Martian took the stuff back out to her.  Mull flipped.  She told Paladin, “She can’t tell my kids what they can and can’t do.”  I was inside with the little ones and oblivious to all of this, btw.  Paladin told her that I was none of her business and Mull told him she’d ask her lawyer about that. Paladin told her that was fine that he wondered just what the judge would have to say about her selling babies.  As I said, I was inside the house and had no idea this was going on.   Bell came inside and was obviously upset.  I asked her what was wrong, and she said she didn’t know if she should tell me.  I told her, “In this house, we have no secrets” and took her to the bedroom to talk.  She told me about the fight going on outside.  I told her that Dad and Mom were wrong to fight in front of her and Martian.  She was having trouble explaining how she was feeling, and I told her that I knew she felt caught in the middle and that she didn’t have to be.  I told her that it’s the adult’s responsibility and she’s a teenager and that anytime she felt caught in the middle she could come to me.  We hugged.  It was totally a bonding moment and she felt better.  When Paladin came inside I dragged him into the bedroom alone to find out what was going on.  He hadn’t known that Bell or Martian could hear them.  I left the room and sent in Bell and Martian so Paladin could talk to them and apologize.  And, the rest of the weekend went off without a hitch except for some arguing between Paladin and I.  I always get stressed when pulling off a big to-do.  I try to do everything myself (in this case, that meant redecorating a courtyard and porch and cooking for 30…all in 2 days…I’ll have decor pics soon!) until I can’t and then I hand off a few jobs.  Paladin wanted to go put a bracket over his license plate.  Yeah, way more important than fixing the grill and getting out the cooler.  So, yeah we got into it, but we got over it…as soon as he saw the light…  I told him if he thought this was rough, he should see how I get when the wedding comes.


Sunday, we planned a BBQ and invited my relatives and all of my girlfriends (I told Rachel to forward an email to them but most of them didn’t show up…not sure if Rachel was lax or what…this has happened before with her…she shows up with one or two people in her car and that’s it…I’m starting to wonder if it’s intentional friend-hoarding or coincidence).  We didn’t tell the kids this until the day of the BBQ because every time we have made a specific plan and told them about it something has ruined it.  They all had a blast!  Paladin got water balloons, and although I missed most of it because I was making sure everyone got fed, I hear that they got several of my cousins GOOD.  lol  My relatives all loved the kids and fawned over them.  Savvy got her hair french-braided by my aunt and was over the moon about it.  Rachel showed up with her 3yr. old Naudia and with Girl’s Night regular Clara and her little 4yr. old Junior (how I wish I’d given someone a camera while I was running around making strawberry margaritas and telling Bell that “I don’t care if your mother lets you make her pina coladas and drink with her.  It’s not happening here.”).  Naudia and Indy are about the same age, and Junior and my cousin’s little boy Christian are the same age.  So, the kids had built-in buddies.   The boys did great and were in cahoots in 10 seconds.  But, Naudia has me worried.  She wouldn’t play with the other children (she is shy with most people but she’s been in daycare with other kids for months) and when you put her next to Indy you can tell that they are on two different developmental tracks entirely.  Naudia’s language skills are stunted to some extent and Rachel has already spoken to a speech therapist because of it.  I’m very worried about it.  Sometimes you really don’t see how significant it is until you see them with other children.  I’ve been around this child more than her own father (thanks to deployments) and on this Monday, they will be leaving for Missouri.  I’m going to miss them so very much.  😦  Anyhoo, the party was still in full swing when Indy informed me that she had pooped.  We headed inside for a diaper change and Mull showed up halfway through (who keeps feeding this kid curry?  seriously, she could peel paint off the walls!).  I told Martian we’d be out once it was done.  When we came out I almost had to force Indy to go because she wanted to keep playing outside.  I’m sure that helped Mull’s mood.  Eventually, the party wound down and we headed out to my Mom’s.


The majority of the week was spent at work trying to repair things.  First, I worked on my computer.  Then Brian told me that he had gotten a letter from the VA telling him that he owed them almost $17 grand!  Needless to say, we spent a day at the VA trying to get somewhere with that.  It comes down to additional medical expenses, such as OTC meds and transportation costs, that the VA has been giving him a monthly stipend for, but that Brian didn’t claim (it was determined before Tina’s time and we suspect that a previous worker filled out the form and padded it…but the Hispanic Morgan Freeman voice on the other end of the line would only say it was “data” they had on file).  They are going to dock his pay by over $500 a month.  Brian thinks it will all be ok, but things have been tight since Mr. Ralph died and he had to take over all the bills alone.  The other day before Paladin and I left Brian asked if the offer to move into the West Wing still stood.  Of course, it does.  Not a problem.  We’ll be happy to have him as a tenant. 


I did take off for most of Tuesday and Paladin and I joined the family on a trek through Natchitoches.  Paladin had never been and we hit all of the same places we’d gone with Ginger last summer including St. Augustine Catholic Church (the wedding ceremony of Steel Magnolia’s was filmed there), Oakland Plantation (it’s undergoing renovations but they’ve opened far more of it since last summer), and Magnolia Plantation (it was deserted and not even the caretaker was there…last year we had a ghostly encounter there that scared the bejesus out of Ginger 🙂 ).  Then we went to lunch at The Landing restaurant on Front Street where the food is ok but you really pay for the ambiance (I prefer Merci Beaucoup around the corner); the bread pudding always makes me forget the cost though.  Paladin and I avoided most of the shops and just strolled along the river front talking about how what might have been.  If Mull hadn’t screwed up filing the divorce, we’d have been in Natchitoches secretly getting married that weekend (I mentioned that to Mom when we got home and she flipped…apparently, I forgot to tell her about our interrupted secret elopement plans).  We ended the day out at the Bayou Pierre Alligator Park.  Unfortunately, it was still a bit cool out and alligators don’t like that, but the baby goats were ADORABLE!  I used every quarter I could lay my hands on to feed them!  Paladin was hanging around talking guy stuff with my Uncle Rob.  Paladin fits in with all the relatives just like he’s one of us already (the brothers even like him…he hangs out and drinks coffee and argues politics and speaks guns & ammo…like I said, he fits right in!  lol ).  On the way out of the park, Tina stopped the owner to tell him how much she enjoyed watching him on A&E’s The Exterminators and she told him about her minor-celebrity sighting.  Last Saturday, she was in Walmart when the brother on the Exterminators, Ricky, asked her if he could get past her.  She went totally ‘OMG!  A celebrity!’ stunned and stuttered, “Sure, Ricky.”  Then Ricky looked stunned.  I’m pretty sure it was the first time he had been a celeb-sighting.  It made Tina’s year.  It was a good quiet day, and I went home with White Russian and Irish Coffee truffles from Front Street’s Les Saisson candy shop. 


In fact, everything was quiet until Thursday evening when Paladin and I got into a major fight.  He has a bad habit of telling the kids everything about our plans which is the same as telling Mull.  Martian called him Thursday evening and asked what we were doing and he told him about the zoo, stopping at Mom’s for painting (weekend before last, I let Savvy and Indy talk to Mom on the phone and Blondie has been asking about her too…Indy threw a major fit the other day wanting to talk to “mom” on the phone…Paladin thought she meant Mull and I had to explain to him that she meant my Mom…this would have been their first time to meet my Mom in person but they’ve met the brothers and Tina a few times) and bowling on base with the Girl’s Night crowd.  I screamed at Paladin over that and told him that we’d never see them now.  He argued back at me because I’m too controlling and have to have my way and he’s not going to lie to his kids.  I told him, “This is who I am and you’d better figure out now if you can handle it; if you can’t, it’s best to leave now.”  He walked out of the ghetto trailer and came back a while later.  We talked it through but nothing was really settled.  I took the argument harder than he did.  He thought of it as a little spat.  I spent the rest of the night driving back to Deridder with him quietly thinking about whether or not he could handle life with me.  I’m under no illusions.  I KNOW I’m controlling and I take my life and everything I do seriously, but I haven’t changed in 20yrs.  I wouldn’t hold my breath on things changing anytime soon.  Paladin tried to get me to talk about it by the time we stopped at Walmart for gas (people don’t really appreciate you sitting in the van for half an hour talking while they wait to fill up, btw).  He finally realized that he’s not the only one with abandonment issues.  I may handle mine better, but they’re still here sitting beside my ‘second class citizen’ issues having coffee and talking shite.  My issues didn’t even get a chance to cool down when Paladin pulled out the forgotten Spring Break schedule Mull provided.  He had forgotten to show it to me until that moment.  I flipped a bit.  Mull’s schedule was basically her taking the kids to the zoo Saturday and to Church Sunday then immediately leaving them with us after Church for most of the rest of the week.  Gee…I wonder if college students get the same Spring Break.   They do?  Why, really?  By morning I was still steamed at Paladin despite his hugging me tight in bed and telling me how much he loves me (that doesn’t keep me from being mad about suddenly having to work out my work schedule so that I can work, take care of the kids, and be with you week-after-next when you have to be in the hospital for 2 days).  Mostly, I was pissed because I’d been looking forward to sleeping past 6am for the first time in a month, to having a single day when I didn’t have to clean or take care of a million other things.  I wasn’t mad at him for long though.


When Paladin called at 8am to make sure the kids were up and getting ready for our day out, Mull informed him that they couldn’t go because they were sick.  Uh huh.  After I’d told Paladin “told ya so”, I suggested he roll on over there and see just how sick they were.   The answer?  Probably not at all.  According to Mull on the phone, Savvy was throwing up all night and Indy was sick and had a fever.  When Paladin got there, they were gone.  Mull soon arrived with all the kids in her mini-van dressed and ready to be left with us; she wanted us to leave Bell at home alone with Indy and Savvy and take the “healthy” kids to the zoo (that leaves Martian and Blondie, btw).  That would never under ANY circumstances have happened; at most, one of us would have stayed with them and Bell would have gone with the rest of the kids.  It’s not Bell’s job to take care of a sick 2.5yr. old and 8yr. old!  She’s only 15!  Dammit, Mull, be a mother or step aside and let a grown up do it!  Of course, sick is a very relative term.  Paladin quickly found out that Savvy had thrown up once the night before and she was hanging on him begging to go to the zoo as perky as ever.  Indy was kept out of his reach; so that he couldn’t touch her to check her “fever” but she didn’t do her usual sick kid thing (she wasn’t listless or glassy-eyed or cuddling up…and believe me, we know what she looks like sick…Mull has sent her to us sick MANY times).  Paladin informed Mull that her ploy wasn’t going to work.  If the kids were really sick, she needed to either stay home and take care of them herself or take them to the ER on base (it costs her nothing but time to take them there).  She told him that just maybe the kids would be sick the next time he was supposed to have them too.  He told her that if she couldn’t take care of her responsibilities that a judge could make sure she did.  Mull has sent those kids to us about 4 times in 5 months with illnesses and has yet to have taken any of them but Martian to the doctor (she only took him because he’s missed so much school that if he didn’t have a doctor’s excuse they’d fail him).  Savvy keeps telling us about her cavity and that “Mom says she can’t afford to take me to the dentist”; Paladin has offered several times now to pay the co-pay for the dentist (as he did for Bell to get her braces and he pays to keep the dental insurance which is an extra charge in the Army system) and Mull just got almost $5k in tax money and another big pay-off from the adoption.  She can afford it.  She just doesn’t want to.  She wanted to make sure she ruined our day out and to get her way.  Paladin told her that wasn’t going to fly.  He came home without the kids because of it.  Bell texted him telling him that it was unfair to not do it Mom’s way because that way at least some of the kids could go and instead now they’d be in the ER for hours; he texted back telling her not to do her mother’s talking for her (Mull makes Bell and Martian talk to Paladin for her despite the fact that we’ve told her time and again to do her own calling…it’s not like Paladin attacks her or anything…it’s called being an adult).  What else was he supposed to do?  If we had taken these obviously-not-sick kids to the zoo as planned, Mull would have reamed us over it and she’d probably have done the same if we’d left Bell to take of them (as if  we’d do that!).  In the end, we’ve pretty much decided not to make Mull’s life easier by taking the kids for most of Spring Break.  We want them here.  We do.  But, Mull can’t have it her way all the time.  She doesn’t get to tell us how to spend our time with them.  Period.  And, I, for one, really don’t feel the need to take care of the kids so she can spend romantic weeks with her college student especially if it’s on her terms.  The Wednesday before this, Paladin talked to his attorney about equal custody, and the lawyer said he could file for it but it’s going to take time.  His lawyer isn’t the greatest and seems to be juggling a lot of clients.  I told Paladin that he’d just have to be the squeaky wheel.  We haven’t been formally documenting Mull’s activities or hunting her down or making notes about her men, but it looks like it may be coming to that.  *sigh*


So that’s been my week in a nutshell.  I’m going to try to get to your blogs tomorrow since I’ll have my Sunday free, I guess.  I hope you haven’t all disappeared.  😦  Right now, I’ve got to water my neglected garden, check out the very needy cat, and go to the last Girl’s Night.  😦  Byes!

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Can I write a post in 6 minutes?  Let’s see…

Congratulate me!  Wednesday my divorce papers were filed!  I’d been hoping to get it finalized on April Fool’s Day, but it took too long to get in to see the lawyer.  M. started to give me grief about it, but it’s done.  The only way he can stop it from being final in the next few weeks is to hire his own lawyer and fight it.  He ain’t got the cahoneys.  Paladin was nearby when he started his whole “don’t I get a say in this?” schtick.  Paladin didn’t interfere, but when I came out of the room with M. I could see that Paladin was on high alert.  I don’t think I’ll ever get the M.P. out of him, but, heck, sometimes it comes in handy.  And it’s sweet that he’s like a bulldog when he’s protecting his own.  🙂


Mull tried to give us grief because we asked for an extra day with the kids while my cousins are here.  We’re planning to take them to the zoo and bowling and make a really long day of it.  And, yes, I told the kids that when we had them over the weekend while Paladin was outside clearing it with Mull.  She was fine and dandy with it.  Then, when he called to remind her and set up the timing for it, she claimed she was already taking them to the zoo.  Sure you were…about 10 seconds after they told you we were taking them.  Whatever.  We talked it over and told her it was fine that we’d still take them early on Friday morning.  I promised them the zoo.  The zoo is what they get.  I doubt they’ll complain if they go twice.  This coming week, Paladin has made an appointment with his lawyer to talk about equal custody.  I doubt we could get full custody, but he’s certainly in as good a position as her to have equal custody.  I don’t know how all this works but I’m hoping that it also lowers her child support.  I know that sounds cruel of me, but I think that cutting her financial legs may be the only way to get her to see her life for what it is.  Child support is meant to take care of the kids and not so you can bring in man after man to f**k with the kids in the next room.  There for a while I actually was beginning to feel sorry for her.  After the crap she’s been pulling lately…not so much.  All she has to do is straighten up her act, pay attention to her kids, and keep her whoring on the down-low instead of right in the house with them.  I don’t think that’s so much to ask.  If she can’t, I’m more than willing to make her life less comfortable.  As I told Paladin, I don’t really care that she’s from a foreign country and has no marketable skills to speak of.  They get Oprah everywhere!  She did this same thing in her own country.  Children are not cash cows.  They are a responsibility and a treasure (as sappy as that sounds).  As far as we can tell, she gets up in the morning and makes sure they leave for school (chances are Bell is the one actually getting them ready).  She tells them to pick up their room when they come home.  That’s it.  Martian does the cooking and he and Bell do the cleaning.  Mull goes to bed about 8 or 9 and doesn’t even put them to bed.  How many mothers would love to be able to get away with a set up like that?  Do a load of laundry, change 2 or 3 diapers, throw a banana at the baby and call it a day.  That’s if the oldest kids aren’t there to do that for her too.  Hell, I don’t get to bed at 9 o’clock at night and all I’ve got is a dog and a 30 hour a week job!  But, as I’ve said about my own situation in the past, being a ho is a full time job…


Dang, that rant seriously ran over my 6 minutes!  Uhhh…I think that will have to do for now.  I should be at work Monday.  So, barring rain, computerus interruptus (aka computer cock blocking…literally…I don’t use my computer if Manjina is in his bedroom!), or the boss sending me to town, I should be on here.  Fingers crossed!  🙂

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I haven’t been able to get online this work-week because of Brian’s sleep schedule and his requests and because my computer has contracted a virus.  Where did the virus come from?  Well, it’s between Manjina and his porn sites or various “others” that have been on my computer.  That is being STOPPED ASAP!  A while back I mentioned that there might be trouble brewing around here, but I never got around to telling ya’ll about it.  So here’s the poop: 


When Tina came to work here there was another PCA (personal care attendant) working for Brian by the name of Mar.  Mar, in a word, sucked.  She barely even showed up here and only did the bare minimum when she did.  I suspect that what she did do was because Brian personally requested it.  Brian’s POC (plan of care…or instructions as to what you must do each day like wash clothes, do dishes, cook, etc…basically, it’s what your daily job entails) was not worth the paper it was written on to her.  Mar got the job because she came out from California to screw Manjina.  About 10 minutes after she got here, she started living with Manjina’s cousin and his 2 kids were calling her “mom”, but she kept the “job” (this is a pattern from what I can tell…previous workers were either screwing Manjina or one of the other brothers…no wonder Manny got his hopes up about me!  ha!).  Eventually, our supervisor, GG, was calling and not getting any answers and never getting Mar on the phone.  GG started asking Tina a lot of questions.  Tina didn’t out Mar, but she didn’t lie for her either.  One day GG showed up for a surprise inspection and Mar was no where to be found.  Brian just stayed neutral and didn’t lie for her.  Mar showed up an hour or so later unexpectedly trying to make like it was just a misunderstanding.  GG put her on probation, but she didn’t fire her.  Apparently, Mar was on the skids with cousin and had been online finding a new mark.  Within a month or two, she headed off to Missouri on vacation to meet a “friend” and never returned.  There was great rejoicing in the land.  There wasn’t a single person around here that was particularly sorry to see her go as far as I can tell.  So, when Mar started calling people around here up back in January, everyone was very neutral and a few people told her outright to get lost.  But, hey, Mar didn’t get where she is by taking “no” for an answer!  Within days of Mr. Ralph’s death, she was on the doorstep. 


I’d never met her, but obviously, I’d formed an opinion.  Ain’t nothin’ changed it, either.  Mar is a “sweetie pie ho” or SPH for short.  An SPH talks sweet as can be.  She will infiltrate every part of your life and stick to you like diarrhea to a baby’s butt.  Nothing short of threatening an SPH with firearms will get rid of them and in fact, this method is not full proof.  In some cases, not even an order of protection will keep them at bay (personally, I recommend garlic and lots of it).  They are experts at preying on weakness and do not hesitate to do so.  Mephistopheles was an SPH.


Mar has moved in with the former tweeker, and I don’t see things going well there.  I’m seriously worried about Tweeky.  Tweeky has been off the meth for a LONG time.  She’s been clean, but the minute I’d heard about Mar moving in with her, I said to Tina, “She’ll be on something before you know it.”  I was right, but thankfully, it’s not the meth.  Tweeky is drinking…heavily.  I’m hoping that’s as far as it goes, but I don’t see a bright future there as long as Mar is around.  Don’t get me wrong.  I know that Tweeky made her own decisions, but an SPH can twist you up and exploit any opening.  Tweeky had a pretty big opening.  Tweeky has a home that she rents and a job at the Big W and best of all, she got injured on the job right before Christmas and is expecting a settlement.  I’m sure Mar heard a big ole “cha ching” when she found out about that.  Nah…I’m sure her coming back here had nothing to do with that…  Tweeky and Mar had been friends since childhood and Mar is the reason Tweeky came out here to live.  Mar has led her down the wrong road many a time according to Tweeky which is why she told Mar that she couldn’t stay with her.  But where has Mar been living for the last 2 months?  I told ya…SPH!


Well, things aren’t moving fast enough for Mar, I guess.  She’s having to look for a new “in” and she’s got her eye on my seat.  She found out I’m getting married this summer and living half the time in Deridder and by now, she probably knows about the Ft. Polk Expansion taking over our property.  She’s been showing up here frequently.  At first, she showed up a couple of times when Tina was working.  Now, she’s been here every day I’ve been here.  I’m sure, at first, she wanted to find some way to bring me down over work issues.  A simple call to GG and she’d have her “in”.  Unfortunately for her, I actually do my job (what a concept!).  In fact, I often go above and beyond.  So, instead she’s been working the SPH angle with Brian.  Need an example?  Yesterday.


Yesterday, I came in and Manjina hadn’t been here all night.  Instead, Mar had come by to use the computer (wanna guess where I think my computer suddenly got it’s virus? Manny’s been watching porn on it for months with no computer STD’s) and stayed all night to “help poor Brian out” (can I get a collective “aaawww”…sheesh…why do men fall for this crap?  I’ll tell ya why because Mama didn’t slap enough tit on ’em!…of course, with men there’s never enough tit).  Brian knows I can’t stand the ho.  I keep myself far away from her at all times.  I make no bones about it.  I talk to her only enough to be civil.  That’s really the ONLY way to handle an SPH.  You must NEVER give them an inch.  But here she was when I arrived.  She got up 2 hours after I arrived to (shock!) a job that was done: bed made, urinals clean, kitchen spotless, laundry in the dryer.  I swear, her face slid further down her ancient ho skull when she realized I’m not a slacker. 


After she left, Brian got up and wanted toast and jam for breakfast.  He also wanted meatloaf for dinner, but we didn’t have hamburger.  I called Tina and had her pick some up in town, but in the meantime, he decided she was taking too long and asked for a spiral cut ham.  I put the ham on and it was about half done when lo and behold who should arrive but Tweeky and Mar.  Tweeky was carrying a bottle of Jack Daniels and offering to make Brian an “irish coffee” (she looked so haggard…it’s really sad).  Brian came through and I told him that the ham was done.  He made some “funny” remarks designed to irk me, but I shrugged them off and set out the ham.  Well, guess who just sweeped in and starts getting some out for Brian like she’d slaved all day over it?  I admit freely that I am a territorial alpha female.  I know this and I embrace this.  I’m either on top or I just don’t participate when it come to this type of crap.  I gave Brian a nasty look, literally threw up my hands, and went into the living room and sat down in his extra wheelchair to watch tv (I can’t bring myself to sit in Mr. Ralph’s chair and the sofa just looks icky…early 80’s tweed upholstery…can you imagine the dust mites? eewww). 


A few minutes later, Brian rolled up beside me and asked about his meatloaf.  Hello!  You have an entire HAM sitting in there!  He complained that he REALLY wanted the meatloaf.  And I replied, “Kill those people and get them out of my kitchen then.”  He turned and sped off to the kitchen and told them to get out that he wanted his meatloaf.  I could hear Mar saying, “She needs us out?  This kitchen is huge though.”  Tough luck, sista.  Despite the fact that it was only about an hour before I usually leave work, I not only made the meatloaf; I made the mashed potatoes from real potatoes and not powdered ones!  When I brought Brian his food, his tongue was on the floor.  I heard him offer them some and Tweeky said she’d take a plate, but a few minutes later, I heard Mar and Tweeky driving away.  Poor Tweeky never got her food.  I guess, Mar didn’t feel like hanging around as much as she thought.  


Sure, it was passive aggressive.  Oh yeah, homey can play that when its called for!  But, screw it!  Some people can’t handle a head on approach.  Sometimes you have to be suggestive instead of forthright, and when it comes to men and an SPH, that’s really your only course of action.  One misstep and you’re a horrible mean person who just won’t leave poor lil SPH alone.  I doubt this was Mar’s last volley though.  I guess, I’ll have to be a little more guarded around here.  😦


Anybody else put a ho in her place?  😀

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My last two posts were pre-scheduled weekend before last.  Monday didn’t quite go as expected.


Tina called and woke me about 4am Monday saying, “Brian thinks Mr. Ralph just died.”  Tina and I dressed quickly and then we grabbed Dave and Will and rushed to Brian’s.  We were right behind the ambulance but Mr. Ralph had passed a few minutes before we got there.  Dave helped the EMT’s bag him, but they were just going through the motions.  We were there until 9am waiting on the coroner to pronounce him dead and allow the EMT’s to remove the body.  Eventually, Junior, Mr. Ralph’s oldest son, and his two daughters came.  Most of those early hours were spent calling the relatives.  Tina helped with most of that.  I felt utterly useless and spent time folding some clothes and cleaning up what I could and helping Brian dress.  Once Jon (Manjina) got there, I took Dave and Will home and got a shower before I came back.  Junior and his daughters took care of the arrangements that afternoon, and when they came by looking for clothes Tina insisted they take a blue dress shirt because it was Mr. Ralph’s favorite; they debated it a couple of times and I thought Tina was going to throttle them over it.  Obviously, I hadn’t been there all that long, but I talked to Mr. Ralph a good bit.  In the past month or two, he had finally gotten comfortable enough with me to discuss his dislike of Brian’s friend and how worried he was about the possibility of Jon’s daughter coming to live with them.  But, I can’t say that we connected on any emotional level.  Tina, however, has been working here for two years and has gotten to know all the skeletons and knows who to call and how.  She insisted that I go ahead and take my “vacation” and I reluctantly went ahead.


Unfortunately, Junior had been deeded the house and 3 acres several years ago when Mr. Ralph and Brian’s mother declared bankruptcy.  Therefore, Brian has no legal stake in the house.  Junior says that Brian can stay as long as he pays the bills, but Junior is not exactly trustworthy.  Brian is half-looking for another place to live just in case, and Paladin suggest we build the west wing into a studio apartment for him (Paladin has been talking about turning that room into an apartment to rent for some time now).  It would make for one easy commute.  Jon has been here for the entire time (hence my lack of blogging…my computer is in his bedroom and he and his gal have been there 24/7), but because of Junior’s animosity, Jon is expected to leave soon.  The date is uncertain, however, and he and Brian seem to be looking at a lot of places for rent.  I think they may be trying to get a place together so that Jon can stay up here. 


Honestly, from what I’ve heard from Tina and others, it’s been a mess.  There have been arguments over missing guns and a supposed will which even Mr. Ralph’s brother swears he had seen (Junior and his daughters started rifling through papers and taking things out of cabinets before they had taken Mr. Ralph away).  It’s just downright ugly and it’s all simmering just below the surface…for now.  I think it’s only got two ways to go:  Either, Junior keeps his word and moves him and his daughters in here with Brian (which is supposed to be his plan), or as Jon predicts, Junior will keep Brian around until he’s ready to sell the place or just wants it to himself and Brian will be out on his ear.  Personally, I wish he’d take Paladin up on his offer since then he’d have a guaranteed place to live and because Paladin has already been making overtures about me quitting once we’re married (Paladin hates me living out here 3 days a week instead of being with him in the Deridder house the whole week).  😦  In the space of a day, I went from total job security to being surrounded by palace-style intrigue.


It’s really weird coming to work and Mr. Ralph’s water system work truck not being under the carport (that was his little part time job after he retired), and it’s even worse when I come in the door and he’s not sitting in his recliner watching the Today Show.  It’s only been a couple of days since I got back to work, but I just can’t get used to it.  When I come through the door, I keep thinking, “Is he in his bedroom or did he go to the casino?”  Then I remember.  Yesterday, Brian had to do some business in town, and Jon loaded him in Mr. Ralph’s GMC truck.  I had gotten in the back of the king-cab and closed my door while Jon left the driver-side door open about a foot (the driver door has to be open to open the passenger door beside it).  The truck was on a steep downhill grade and there was only a slight breeze blowing.  Brian was on his cellphone when the two of us watched the driver door slowly close.  Creeped us the HELL OUT!  Those doors are pretty danged heavy and there wasn’t enough breeze to close it (a breeze shouldn’t have slowly closed it anyway…it would have slammed it).  Dozens of times we loaded Brian up that way, and Jon would leave the door open like that and Mr. Ralph would reach over and gently shut the door.  I’d seen Mr. Ralph close that door in just that particular gentle way a hundred times.  Call me gullible but I don’t doubt that Mr. Ralph was standing right there.  He probably sat down in his recliner after we left and started watching his favorite show, Days of Our Lives.  At least, that’s how I’d like to think of him.

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There’s nothing much to report today.  We’re off to the VA hospital with Brian for his check-up, and that means a day long horror trek.  😦 


However, happily, my beloved is coming home today!  And, after work, I plan to slip off to Ft. Polk tonight to welcome him back.  Friday, I snuck into his room and left a card and a couple of helium balloons because I knew I wouldn’t be able to be waiting for him.  Wednesday may begin a week long vacation of sorts.  Paladin’s surgery comes with a 7 day mandatory leave, but he’ll have to go in tomorrow and sort that out.  After that, we’ll spend 7 straight days together.  The house should get cleaned and hopefully, we’ll get started moving in.  One of the nicest things about us is that we have pretty much the same work ethic and energy level.  That means that we exhaust other people but we get tons done!  He’s detail driven and I keep an eye on the big picture.  It works pretty well so far, but a week together is a nice test.  I’m not worried though.  We’ve spent 4 days at a time together for a couple of weekends over the holidays, and our regular weekends are really 3 days because he gets off work early on Fridays.  Our last weekend together, he came out of the bedroom with his overnight bag and it suddenly hit me that he was leaving that night.  It hadn’t even occurred to me that he would be leaving.  I wanted to cry.  He makes it very easy to turn co-dependent. 


Over the weekend, Paladin and I spent a few hours online IM’ing and making wedding plans.  We looked at some rings.  We talked about what the kids will wear and what the men will wear.  And, we decided on one GIANT SURPRISE for the wedding!  It’s SO BIG I can’t even tell Ginger!  Pascal and Pyewacket (that’s pronounced pie-ah-wak-et…she’s our cat…oh yeah, did I mention that I got a cat?  I know, I’m allergic but she showed up one day and won’t leave…obviously, she’s an outdoor/barn cat) are the only ones who know!  But, I’m going to let ya’ll in on it sometime this Spring after we make sure that we can swing it.  It will be a password protected post that comes with a penalty of death should anyone leak the info to Ginger.  The secret is KILLING ME ALREADY!!!  Arrrggghhhh….


Tomorrow, our supervisors will be here at work (did I mention that I had moved my desktop to work? presumably it was so I’d have more time to blog  HA HA).  Since Tina is supposed to be on the schedule, I get the day off.  Boringly, I will be home cleaning.  😦  So don’t bank on me knowing anything about the bloggy world for more than a week since my computer is at work and I won’t be.  Dang it!  😦  Ginger will have to keep me abreast of all the goings on.  In the meantime, I’ll try to get pictures of Pye and the outside of the house and Paladin and maybe even the kids if we get to see them. 


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