Category Archives: Kids

Why I Love My “Staycations”

Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE the beach. Back in my married years and before the grandkids hit school age, my former in-laws used to treat their family to a week at Hilton Head. These trips typically required clearing up work responsibilities, cleaning house, packing for two adults and one child (no Social Diva at this time), coordinating dog care, and then driving for a long period of time.  We used to leave on Friday, drive to Rock Hill, stay overnight, then finish the trip to the Island on Saturday. We would spend the week with the in-laws and the sister with her husband and child. I was usually ready to head home by Thursday. The return trip home would start by 5 AM Saturday morning, putting us back in town between 5 and 6 PM, depending on the number of potty breaks. I usually came back more exhausted than when I left, and it used up so many vacation days!

Since my separation/divorce, I haven’t had the funds to take the kids away to the beach for a week. Instead, I typically take off the week bordering my birthday in July and the week prior to the start of the school year. During these “staycations,” we have taken day trips to Erie, visited Kennywood, worked on projects around the house (well, I did; not so much the kids), shopped for back to school supplies, and have just enjoyed a relaxed, no itinerary type week.

There are a few reasons I love my staycations:

* I can wake up on my own (still as early as 6:30), but not be in a rush to be anywhere. I can enjoy my coffee while catching up on the news of the world and my Facebook and Twitter timelines.

* Live with Kelly! I watch this show anytime I am able to be home at 9 AM.

* The Ellen DeGeneres Show. Same as above. Regardless of whether it is a fresh run episode or a repeat, I still try to watch.

* I get a little slice of being a “stay at home mom.” I can run errands with the kids (otherwise known as #MomShuttle). I can keep up on household chores.

* This last week, I was able to do some serious cleaning/purging in my basement. I have boxes that haven’t been touched in the five years I’ve been here! I threw out so much crap, and I have a large stack of items going to the Vietnam Veterans of America on Monday.

* I was able to spend two days with Flawed Memory, who was released early of his two weeks’ notice. We hung out at the pool and saw a Blackberry Smoke show.

So I’m at the end of my last summer staycation week. The kids go back to school on Monday, and I go back to work. I love hanging at the pool over the summer, but I am looking forward to the cool temps of my favorite season. The Fall has much in store for me as well. Vampire Boy is a senior in high school. Two friends have their weddings scheduled in October and December. Then there’s Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. This year seems to have flown by so quickly. And, of course, I’m looking forward to my grown up vacation on The Rock Boat at the end of February.

I guess I should now seriously start that diet / eating more healthy / working out regularly. Now where’s that post I wrote about resolutions?

I Wish …


That instead of being “worrying” about Vampire Boy and his work schedule at the zoo that you ENCOURAGED him.

That you encouraged him to be a good employee with a good work ethic.

That you encouraged him to think ahead to manage and organize his time with work, soccer, and school responsibilities.

That you encouraged him to keep his first real paying job.


You complain about the road closures and the drive.

When you drive him only ONE trip, ONE WAY, per week.

And encourage him to give up this first job.

Instead of teaching him to a good work ethic.

And how to hang in for both the good AND the bad.

I guess that’s why I have had only two jobs in 26 years … and he’s had numerous jobs and periods of unemployment.

I guess that’s why I didn’t give up on our marriage and I wasn’t the one who walked away.

Instead of worrying about the job at the zoo,

How about encouraging him to study for the ACT?

How about worrying about if he’s scheduled for his senior pictures?

How about worrying what he’s wearing for senior pictures?

It’s hard to co-parent when one parent thinks a kid should do more, yet the other parent doesn’t.


Braces Removal Day, Endless Driving, and Computer Disappointment

Day 3 of NaBloPoMo. I have no real topic to focus on.

Today, Vampire Boy had his bottom braces removed. My first born has morphed from the darling baby he was into a charming young man.  Coming from a person who told her mother that her grandchildren would be four-legged fur faces, that says a lot.  Vampire Boy wasn’t that impressed about having the braces removed as he needs to wear a lower retainer 24/7 for a year, followed by nighttime wear for the second year.  He now has a more beautiful smile and is truly growing into a handsome young adult.

I feel like I spent most of my afternoon/evening in my car. I left work early to pick him up a theater practice (he’s on stage crew and they’re practicing for next week’s performance). After dropping him at the orthodontist’s office, I headed over to the Middle School to pick up Social Diva from Homework Club. Since I was early, I returned my (severely) past-due library books (got the fines reduced to $10 each). After running Social Diva over to her dad’s, I head back to the orthodontist’s office to pick up Vampire Boy and review the instructions with the orthodontist.  It’s back in the car to take VB back to the school to finish out the rehearsal.  I’m half-way home and I get a text “please come back, we’re done.” [Sigh]  I head back over to pick him up and transport him to dad’s.

I was anxious to get home because my Vista CD finally arrived. For those who don’t follow me on Facebook or Twitter, my computer died on Sunday. After spending days researching how to recover my files, I was anxious to sit down and try recovery again. Unfortunately, I don’t know enough about recovery to use the CDs without completely wiping out my system.  I’m back to Square One.  I don’t mind doing a factory reset, but I am anxious about recovering the documents, files, and photos from my machine. They look like they’re still there. The challenge is going to be getting them transferred out.

The next two days are going to be crazy ones. I hope I can write something worth keeping your attention!