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  1. Don't get me wrong.  I actually do love my sister.  Except when I do not.  And she has made it really really hard to love her in the last (doing the math here)  3.5 years.  (no really last 'contact' was June 2014 in a cryptic 'stand down, I'm alive' Facebook post - oh and this was in the period when I was getting Mom diagnosed with dementia and dealing with drive-offs and actually needed to talk to her).  

    And yesterday was her birthday.  And Facebook likes to remind me of this because her birthdays are turned on (for the record, mine is not because I don't always react well to 'everybody' screaming happy birthday at me for days) - even though her last post was June 2014.  

    I assume she is alive.  That assumption is based on statements I receive (no, really) regarding her storage unit when the payments are late.  My means of communicating with her is via facebook messages that indicate no receipt but trust me they are getting through somehow (I care not how) because a few months ago the storage unit threatened to sell her stuff and I communicated that to her and for a month or so no notice.  In the mail today - yup, another notice about late payment.  So I just sent another message and the lovely I miss you pangs have reverted back instantaneously to I hate you.  

    My suspicion based on a limited about of internet research/stalking is that she's having financial issues and hiding from creditors (because that is always a great way to deal with issues).  And I cannot help her if she doesn't want to be helped (as indicated by her hiding from everyone).  

    I did not wish her a public happy birthday yesterday because in the past that has resulted in friends of hers, some dating back to high school coming out of the woodwork and then I have to go through this whole weird explanation of I have zero clue what is going on or where she is.  Which always feels so sad and stupid.  I'll also admit to not attending certain family functions (mainly on the paternal side) because my uncle is going to ask about her and really I want him to leave it (and about half dozen other subjects) alone but he won't.  (and really dude, you are my father's brother and you know how he was so whey the hell are you of all people expecting me to know or figure out or get through to my sister who is acting the same way he did)??

    The positive news of the morning from the same batch of mail is that the Recovering State of Brownbacistan has renewed Mom's Medicaid for another year.  

  2. Christmas is over, New Year is gone, I'm out of excuses. Back to weekly posting plan.


    And, so, what's going on in Ranford household?

    To be honest, not much. Life continued in familiar, chaotic misery. 

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    Viola started a new parenting strategy. You put a crying baby on floor and lecture it. Very fundie-like, and very unproductive. 

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    She decided to share this wisdom to the world with her first book. Basically, it’s a collection of her blog posts, but readers now must pay money for it. 
    Smart life choices!
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    Reed is a bit of a bully towards Huckleberry. He gets along with twins and doesn't care about quads yet, but every time he sees Huck with a toy, he takes it away. 
    Zachary and Viola would encourage Huck to give Reed his favorite childhood position, but, unfortunately, Huckleberry doesn't have anything that belongs just to him. 
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    But Reed has a good side, too. He catches more fishes in one day than Zachary has managed to catch in his entire life. 

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    The fishes Reed provides is the main food source for entire family now. 

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    And he remembers to pick up all the old bottles from kitchen floor. And, trust me, there are lot of bottles. 

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    #StoryTime: During one night a total stranger entered a house!!! Viola was busy potty training Huckleberry and didn't notice until it was too late!

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    The ungodly stranger turned out to be a hobby instructor! They are almost as bad as social workers, running around and telling kids that it's ok to enjoy something!!
    (Apparently, Forest likes this one particular toy so much he has gained enough enthusiasm to be in zone. And he is only toddler. I'll take it as a sign.)

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    And, yes, no pregnancy announcement from Ranfords... Have Lord closed Viola's womb? Without giving her a precious little baby girl? Or is this just temporally hardship that will be overcome with combination of praying and sweet fellowshiping? Viola sure hopes so. 

  3. Life

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    Currently trying to find what gets vaseline out of a toddlers hair my toddler joy got into the vaseline and I'm wondering how the heck im going to get this out of her hair. How many washes will this take to come clean this is gonna be a long night

  4. Hey everyone! In advance of Thanksgiving, I thought I'd share a family turkey recipe! Fair warning, this takes FOREVER to cook. I do it in advance of the big day.  Enjoy.

    Sauce: Enough for or a 15 pound turkey or smaller  

    Ingredients:

    Relajo (spice mix).. you can find this at some Mexican grocery stores in a little baggie or make your own

    ---chile ciruela

    ---chile wake

    ---ajonjoli

    ---pepitoria

    ---laurel

    ---ajo

    3 chopped onions

    2 Red bell peppers chopped

    1/2 small can tomato paste 

    12 peeled tomatoes (from a can, buy two large cans and use 12, plus juice)

    2 cartons Chicken stock

     

    Directions:

    Toast the relajo on a frying pan until its fragrant 

    Cook the onions until transluesent, add bell peppers and relajo

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    Add tomatoes and tomato juice 

    Cook low and bubbly for 30 min 

    Blend the sauce as fine as possible (you can use regular blender, but let it cool before blending, or immersion blender)

    Add half carton of chicken stock and cook for 20 min

    Get another pot. Place a fine strainer over the empty pot, and slowly strain the sauce into the pot using a spoon to push the sauce against the strainer and squeeze as much juice out as possible. This juice should be thin and red. Place the pulp into a bowl and repeat until all the thick blended sauce is strained.

    Now take the pulp and put it back in the original pot, adding another half carton of stock. Cook for 20 min.

    Repeat the straining. Cook one more time with more broth. Strain again. (so three rounds of cooking and straining)

    You can throw away the pulp, and what you have left in the pot is your sauce! Season to taste. If its too sour, mix in some brown sugar

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    For the turkey:

    Ingredients:

    ·      Butter

    ·      Mustard

    ·      Worcestershire sauce

    ·      1/2 cup white wine

    ·      Stuffed spanish olives

    ·      Capers

    ·      Salt

    ·      Pepper

    ·      Paprika

     

    Directions:

    The night before, poke the turkey with a fork. Rub the butter, mustard, and worcestershire sauce all over the turkey and get inside the skin

    Put the turkey in a pan with the sauce, olives and capers drained, white wine, paprika and cook in oven. 

    Make sure you baste often it while its cooking

     

    The sauce gets its final flavor from the turkey. After cooking with the turkey, it can be frozen used as sauce on other things.  Also, a good Salvadoran post-thanksgiving meal is pan con pavo/ pan con chumpe, which is a turkey sandwich with the sauce, radishes, and cucumbers. Use a crusty bread.

     

    Sauce can be made a week in advance, and keep in Tupperware in the fridge. Or freeze if holding for longer.

     

    Throwback to last year's stuffing recipe: 

     

     

  5. If you’ve read my posts on FJ for a while, you’ve probably heard me mention that I have scoliosis.  I underwent a spinal fusion when I was fourteen, and I’ve had a fourteen-inch titanium rod with screws and hooks holding it into place against my spinal column. As you can imagine, this sometimes gets uncomfortable.

    Spoiler

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    Now, from what we can tell now, I inherited the gene from my mother’s side of the family—because guess who also has scoliosis? That’s right, everybody’s favorite, Aunt PJ. To be clear, the difference between my scoliosis (and subsequent surgery) and Aunt PJ’s scoliosis is something like this:

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    Necessary disclaimer: I don’t doubt that Aunt PJ’s scoliosis causes her discomfort—I’m sure it does. But, as you can see, it’s akin to comparing a deep paper cut with someone who just cut their finger off in a cigar cutter. I can't tell you what I wouldn't give for a ten percent curve, even after my surgery. That doesn’t stop Aunt PJ, though, and she wants you to know she’s in horrific. pain. every. day. Of course she does.

    Spoiler

    raw

    Given that we have the same diagnosis, it should come as a shock that when I had my surgery (and subsequent lengthy hospital stay and recovery time), Aunt PJ didn’t reach out to me once, either through card or phone call. But that’s Aunt PJ for you—if it’s not about her, it’s not important.

    Spoiler

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    After the death of my grandmother, my mother moved back to her home state and moved into the family home to help settle the estate. As I’ve mentioned previously, Aunt PJ also lived there with two of her three children. This was also my first year in college, and I couldn’t come home from school to visit my mother. Why, do you ask? Because there wasn’t a decent bed available to me to sleep in, a requirement in my life post- surgery. That’s right, a woman with scoliosis wanted me to just sleep on a cot. I ended up not visiting my mother for a year, until she moved. Four beds in the house and no one could give one up for a couple of nights so I could sleep and still walk in the morning.

    Spoiler

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    Over the years, Aunt PJ’s scoliosis has supposedly gotten worse. She posts frequently about her pain and discomfort on Facebook and in person, eliciting sympathy from kinder-hearted folk than me. She now visits a chiropractor and refuses to sit on soft seating such as sofas and armchairs. Several times, Aunt PJ sat on a dining room chair and explained to me that her scoliosis kept her from sitting on the couch…while I was sitting on the couch. Trust me, Aunt PJ, if my twisty straw of a back can handle it, so can yours. 

    Spoiler

    shoutouttomycouch.gif

     

    So each and every visit I have with her, I get to hear about her wretched, pain-filled life (in which she is healthy enough to travel long distances, sit and stand for extended lengths of time, and participate in physical activities like yoga and going to the gym--you know, stuff that is difficult for me to do). And does she ever ask me how I’m managing? Yeah, you have two guesses and the first one doesn’t count.

    Spoiler

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  6. Keeping Up With The Dunkels - Chapter 14: Dunkels Double Date

     

     

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    Back at the Miceli's, Hobart brought his doctor friend home for dinner again one night, and one of Adalyn's sisters just happened to be visiting to help with the baby.

     

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    Wow! Aimee Joy and Christian seemed to be hitting it off! "What do you think about an ice cream sundae reception?" she asked him.

     

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    "Huh? That's crazy."

    Hmm... maybe not.

     

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    Uh oh... is there trouble at Adam and Mehrissa's new house?

     

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    Nope! Apparently when you adopt a pet, the police are nice enough to bring it over. Er... sure. Why question it? Adam and Mehrissa's boys had been begging for a pet for ages, and their parents finally decided to get them a little puppy named Bear. Aww!

     

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    With Mehrissa expecting another (hopefully) tiny blessing, it sure was going to be a full house soon! She wore her hot pink maternity pajamas, hoping God might take the hint.

     

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    Not long after Aimee Joy was introduced to Hobart's doctor friend Christian Cwik, Anna Grace started talking to another young man from church, Waylon Menon. She was a little worried when he expressed his admiration for women who kept in shape - that wasn't her at all! But it COULD be her! 

     

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    After Waylon left, Anna Grace jumped right on that treadmill. She got off to a rocky start, but she purposed to work out every single day, determined to win Waylon's affections, and soon she was physically fit!

     

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    "Wow, I can tell you're a young lady with a heart for the Lord, who also LOVES to lift!" Waylon exclaimed, impressed, and promptly went to talk to her brother to see if he could start a group text.

     

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    *To the tune of Butterfly Kisses* "I know the cake looks funny, Daddy... but I sure tried!

    Oh... wait... my daddy's dead. And he wasn't my real daddy, anyway. Oh well."

    :pb_eek:

     

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    Guess what? Christian and Aimee Grace Joy (I am seriously surprised I don't mess up these names more often, folks) may have gotten off on the wrong foot (seriously, ladies, enough with the ice cream sundaes), but soon they were getting along just fine. In fact, little adopted brother Alexander was only too happy to chaperone as they started an OFFICIAL COURTSHIP!

     

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    Aimee Joy was thrilled that her educated and employed suitor took her out on nice dates (don't worry, the chaperones are right there at the next table). She didn't mind at all that he had a gay brother in the city. What was one gay brother?! They were totally in sync on everything. They even discussed the sort of house they would move to if, Lord willing, they got married!

     

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    Anna Grace wasn't far behind her twin sister. Her dates with Waylon were a little more low key, but she didn't mind at all. She was more than happy to show off her homemaking skills by impressing him with the most complicated meal any of her sisters had ever made: spaghetti and meatballs.

     

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    Both sisters were totally sure they had found the men they were going to marry! FINALLY!!! Being single in your mid-20s is such a trial, ya'll!

     

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    Back in the Big Scary City... Abigail was still fuming about the way Gilbert had treated her. She decided she was finally going to take the plunge and try online dating.

     

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    Her first date was with a firefighter in a trench coat. She thought that was kind of weird, and she'd had bad luck with guys in trench coats - plus, all she could keep thinking about was how mad she was at Gilbert. But she decided to give trench coat man 3.0 a shot anyway.

     

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    Sadly he turned out to be totally meh. All he could talk about was himself, and Abigail found herself far more interested in the basketball game on TV than him. She didn't even like sports!

     

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    A couple weeks later, she had another date lined up with a guy named Neil. This guy seemed much more promising. He looked normal, didn't wear a trench coat, and didn't try to jump into bed with her on the first date (which is a good thing, since Abigail is still trying to get over her fundie upbringing and hasn't had the best of luck with dudes and, er, hasn't even kissed a guy yet. Shh...)

     

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    WHAT FRESH HELL IS THIS.

    Abigail and Neil planned to meet up for another date the following week. When he texted her to let her know he was outside, she asked him to come in, because she was going to be about another five minutes getting ready. But when he walked in the door, he was dressed like THAT.

    "Um, hey Neil, what's up with the outfit?" she asked with a light laugh, trying not to show her alarm. "Are you in a play tonight or something?"

    "What? Nope, 'course not. I'm taking you out on a date. This is just how I dress. Haha! I know it may seem weird, but I'm part of a plant-worshiping group and we have to dress like this to do our rituals. It's not a big deal, we just have sexual intercourse with plants to gain their leafy powers for ourselves. I was hoping you'd come to tonight's meeting with me."

     

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    Abigail kindly asked him to leave.

    "Fuck you, Gilbert!" she thought to herself, as Neil walked out the door. Some misdirected anger there, I think, but okay.

     

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    Things were going much better back at the Dunkel homestead. The twins' suitors coordinated between themselves to do a... double proposal! Oh my gosh! How sweet and how neat! 

     

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    Aimee Joy and Anna Grace were absolutely ecstatic. This time they both say, "YES!" Looks like there's a double wedding in the (VERY NEAR) future!

     

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    NIKE! Don't worry, Cara was alone in the privacy of her beige bedroom as she celebrated her third pregnancy. #Blessed!

     

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    Adam and Mehrissa's boys were growing up. So far little Bryson was the only one with Mama's colouring.

     

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    Bear grew up too! Good dog.

     

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    Addyson liked to escape the Dunkel homestead now and then to visit her cousins' house, where there were only six people and a dog.

     

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    Happy Birthday, Braydon! Time for a haircut, I think, little buddy.

     

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    Much better!

     

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    Just as Mehrissa put Bryson down for his afternoon nap, she went into labour for the fifth time. This labour was the fastest yet, and they didn't even have a chance to call the midwife! Thankfully that baby just slid right out of her, a mere 10 pounds even, and she was back on her feet making tater tot casserole that very same night! Meet...

     

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    Brody Dunkel! Yep. It's another boy. Sorry Mehrissa - maybe next time! I mean, look on the bright side. There will definitely be a next time.

     

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    Adalyn was soooooo enjoying being a mommy. It was the most precious thing ever! As she watched her little David grow into a toddler, all she could think of was how much he looked like his daddy. Where was Hobart, anyway?

     

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    Out schmoozing, it seems. Look, the man is a DOCTOR, he has to make connections in the community. He can't be expected to sit around at home with his wife and kid all day. How else is he supposed to provide for them? And yes, he's at a disreputable establishment with GAMBLING, but that's where the work luncheon was held. He can't help that, can he?

     

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    Okay, I know this looks bad, but Dr. Amanda [mumbled last name] is European, okay? It would be the height of rudeness not to greet her with a kiss!

     

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    But it seems Hobart tried to do a little more than greet her, if you know what I mean. To her credit, she was having none of it. "Are you crazy, Hobart?" she exclaimed. "I know you're married! We're standing outside your own house, for God's sake! I'm out of here."

    Hobart could only hope that this little 'misunderstanding' wouldn't get spread around town by his colleague...

     

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    Meanwhile, inside the house, Adalyn was about to welcome their second precious blessing! "Hobart! Hobart?! Where are you?!" she called. 

     

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    Oh well. Adalyn was sure he'd be along to welcome his newborn daughter Daisy to the world eventually.

     

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    A few days later, Abigail was surprised to see Hobart out and about downtown, and at the sort of establishment fundies usually steered clear of. "Hobart? What're you doing here?" she asked. "Didn't Adalyn just have a baby?"

     

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    Hobart laughed her off and told her he was there for a 'work event', but she watched in consternation as he sat down to play poker with some strange women, who seemed more than a little interested in how much money a doctor of his calibre made.

     

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    Guess who? While Abigail was out and about and worrying about her brother-in-law, her "ex-boyfriend" Gilbert showed up outside her house AGAIN. Good thing she wasn't there to see him, because there might have been a throw down, and not in a sexy way.

     

    So long for now! Hope you enjoyed today's update. Check back soon for... a Dunkel Double Wedding! And so much more. Maybe a Dunkel restraining order, too (take a hint, Gilbert)!

  7. This fucking summer. This fucking year, really. So. My marriage, which limped along while I was super depressed because I just didn't care, is really rocky right now. I'm not sure he knows that it's total shit- I think he thinks everything is great. I mean, I finally stopped nagging him. I'm just really quiet all the time. I never ask him to do anything around the house anymore and just do it all myself. Because I'm fucking tired of having to tell a grown man, over and over and over again, that he needs to put effort into his own life outside of work. For the first time in a long time I'm thinking about the future and I'm just exhausted by the thought of however many more decades with him. I get one life and I'm not sure I want to spend it as someone's damn live-in help- there is no mystical property of a penis that prevents the owner of said genitals from cleaning the shower once in a fucking while, without being reminded six times, and without whining about it.

    It all came to a head when one of his friends (who, silly me, I thought was my friend too- hahaha, no) told him that he's avoiding me on purpose (we're next door neighbors, it was getting pretty weirdly obvious) because he's got some Mike Pence flavored asshole ideas about the world. Well, the dude didn't acknowledge his own Mike Penceness, just said that he won't be alone with his friends' wives*. Like, what the fuck, dude, I'm a PERSON. I'm a PERSON. I don't BELONG to my husband, and I don't just drop my fucking pants every time I'm alone in a room with someone! As a matter of fact, the vast majority of times I have ever been alone with another human being, I was wearing my pants the whole time. The whole time!

    *I'll note that this rule was clearly not in existence last year, before I lost 50 pounds.

    Believe it or not I swallowed my rage (it took some serious swallowing) and did not make him eat his own mailbox. See? Agency. Choices. Not ruled by my emotions/gonads/instincts. Almost like I'm people or something.

    Like, holy shit guys, I'm being treated like I'm an appliance with tits by basically all sides these days. This sucks and MANY things officially tasted better than thin feels.

  8. I feel the need to get this off my chest, even if nobody really reads this.

    Yesterday marked the end of a chapter of my life that was open for 16 years - since I was 16 myself.

    When I was 16 I met someone online. We were the same age (or so I thought - years later she admitted she was actually 6 years older than me) and had similar interests and immediately clicked as friends. In fact, it turned into more than friendship and we started a long-distance relationship. I was infatuated, in love as only a 16-year-old could be.
    I vividly remember our first fight. It was around the time of my 17th birthday. We had a mutual friend who was interested in a site called Furcadia. She'd invited us both to play with her but my girlfriend wasn't interested. I decided to give it a try, though. When she found out I'd been hanging out there with our friend she was furious. I was taken aback, but I placated her and it was over.

    Thus began my dealings with a person suffering from psychiatrist-diagnosed Narcissistic Personality Disorder. In the early years she broke up with me several time. Each time I was sobbing and heart broken. Each time I was told to get over it. At one stage I moved across the country to live with her. I had no car and no way of catching public transport so she promised to drive me around. Three days before my flight she dumped me. When I moved there, she refused to drive me around. My parents had to buy me a car and drive it cross country. Two months later she decided she didn't want to live there any more and broke the lease to move back home. I had to do the same.
    She told me to move on because we were never getting back together. Eventually, I did.

    I kept it from her, knowing that in spite of her telling me to move on she would be furious. I didn't lie about it, I just never mentioned it. I didn't really try to hide it. Enevitably she found out and the fallout was phenomenal. Eventually, we began talking again. She wanted to resume our relationship after mine ended, but after she had stranded me across the country without so much as a single apology for her actions I'd seen her true colours and could never feel the same about her. I was willing to be friends, but any love I'd felt had been crushed by the hurt I felt.
    Despite not being in a relationship, she rewrote the history of mine. She accused me of being with him while I was still with her. She claimed that she'd never said to get over her and that she'd been trying to get back together with me while I was with him. None of that was true. After telling me so many times I had to get over things she'd done in the past, she never let go of my 'betrayal'.

    Once I found out about the NPD I began to learn how to avoid the arguments and brush off the constant criticism. I was a bad friend, I made her wait too long when we talked online, my illness got in the way all the time, she made all the time in the world for me but I wasn't reciprocating. Somehow, amidst the constant barrage of criticism she kept hinting at us getting back together, but she wanted me to be the one to make the move.

    That's when I realised - she didn't love me. I was her backup plan. When she had a better prospect she was happy to let me go, but when there was nobody else she wanted me. She took for granted that I'd wait around for her and ask to get back together and be grateful for the opportunity.
    She was wrong.

    A couple of years ago, I met someone new. Somebody whose love didn't come at the cost of my self worth. Someone who didn't complain about making endless sacrifices for me and ignore the sacrifices I made from then. In fact, I didn't need to make sacrifices for him at all.

    It was a love different to any I've felt before, and the first time we met up I realised I couldn't imagine my life without him. Earlier this year, we got married and it was the best thing I've ever done. Naturally, I did not tell her.

    I told him everything about her - how our relationship had started, the ways it had ended, and our continuing 'friendship'. I told him that she viewed us as being in a relationship even though I hadn't agreed to one. I was completely honest, and he was completely supportive. He encouraged me to disconnect with her, made me finally believe I didn't deserve the constant criticism, that even though I'd learned to deal with her and didn't rise to the bait it still negatively affected me. He didn't push. He just let me do it at my own pace.

    Yesterday, I finally disconnected for good.

    It was over something relatively minor in the scheme of our rocky relationship. I was going through something difficult and she was angry with me for being distracted by it because she was having problems too. I told her I was dealing with a potentially terminal illness in my family. Most people would at least offer some perfunctory sympathy. An 'I'm sorry', even if the next word was 'but'. But she didn't. She was just angry I wasn't asking about her issues.
    And that's what did it.

    I told her I had nothing more to say to her, and this time I truly meant it.

    I know how different the story would be coming from her. I am a horrible person, a heartbreaker, cold and cruel. I am a cheater and a liar. I am not a saint and I know I've done things out of anger or hurt to lash out at her. I am not blameless. I feel genuinely sorry for what she's going through right now and it's very hard to not tell her so, but I can't get drawn back into contact. My words yesterday confirmed to her every bad thing she's ever thought about me and she will never forgive me. She'll hate me. I needed it to be that way. I wasn't cruel, at least I tried not to be. I wanted to say she was a narcissist and a hypocrite, but I didn't. I didn't get mad. I just said I could no longer be in contact  - but that's all it will take. Ending things myself, on my terms - that's an unforgivable sin. I still feel guilty, despite everything. I hate hurting or upsetting anyone.

    But at last, I can finally breathe.

  9. sawasdee
    Latest Entry

    I went tonight to the Grand Opening of my friend's bar.

    It was great. Lots of people, good live music, great food -including a roast suckling pig. I reckon it cost her at least 10,000 baht - about $350. Doesn't sound a lot, but here it is. I live on about 30,000 baht a month.

    There were LOTS of people there. Some were fellow bar owners, there to wish her luck - they won't be back, they have their own bars to run. Some were friends and family, who don't usually go to bars - but came to show support.

    Many were what we call balloon chasers - when a bar is having a party, and giving away free food, they put balloons outside. Some people go from balloon to balloon, to avoid paying for food. I saw some come in, eat, have a glass of water or a small beer, and leave. One table had three different groups in less than 90 minutes.

    And then there were some who are and will be customers. I''m just not sure there were enough of them. Out of maybe 150 people all night - I was there from shortly after it started at 7pm until nearly midnight - there were maybe 20 to 30 who will be regular customers - and they won't be there every day.

    I'm her friend, and was there with some of her relatives. We'll probably go as a group about once a week. I'll go another night with other friends.

    I'm just not sure it's enough to sustain her business. She has three employees, whose wages must add up to at least 40,000 baht a month. Tonight, she had four extras, because she knew it would be super busy.

    I really want it to work for her, but the freeloaders tonight upset me.

    So I'm feeling a bit down.

  10. From the beginning of my pregnancy I wanted a home birth in water. I knew my son was going to be my last child, and I truly wanted that experience. Until I hit 34 weeks. March 23rd I called my primary physician & told her something didn't feel right. I had a ton of pain in my abdomen and my baby wasn't moving much.  She referred me to the only OB practice in the area that takes my insurance & they basically told me "pregnancy sucks, you're fine, get over it." The weekend passes and I feel him moving less and less, but I was starting to get labor pains. I called the hospital near me & they told me 34 weeks was too early and despite my concerns, they would stop my labor and send me home.

    Monday the 27th I was in labor and worried about my son. My mom took me to a different hospital to get a second opinion. They did an ultrasound and hooked myself and my son to the monitors, the on call OB determined he needed to come out because his placenta had begun to die, and he wasn't getting enough nutrients, something the OB I was referred to could've caught if they had listened to my concerns instead of brushing me off.  I starten on pitocin and walked & bounced on the birth ball. 

    6 AM on March 28th I begged for an epidural. My first birth had been 12 hours of labor, 20 minutes of pushing, and medication free. I had wanted to do that again, but at this point after laboring 48+ hours on my own, my body was worn out. I was shaking uncontrolably and crying. After they placed it, my water broke and I knew things were going to go quickly from there. I texted my husband telling him the baby was coming within the next few hours & to try and make it. I napped off and on thanks to the epidural until I felt intense pressure and realized it was time to push. 

    After two pushes and 5 minutes, Woodrow-James Digger Godwin made his way into this world at 11:43 AM. He weighed 5lb10Oz & was 18.5 inches long. He was placed on my chest for a moment, and then once we realized he was wheezing and struggling to breathe, he was whisked off to NICU. My mom followed him while the nurses stitched me up. I texted my husband again "baby is here but he's in NICU"

    It was 4 days before I could hold him & 7 before he came home. 

    He's now 5 weeks old & finally putting on weight and has adapted to life outside the womb very well. 

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  11. Until recently, I foolishly assumed that since the laundry area shelves and brackets were 1.5 inch thick solid wood, that they had been properly anchored to the wall by the previous owners.

    Long story short, they weren't! :angry-cussingblack:

     They are now, and I'm extremely grateful that no one was hurt when one of the brackets holding up a fully loaded shelf pulled itself out of the wall. :pray: 

    Everyone, please check to make sure your shelves are secure! 

  12. This post is brought to you by the amazing homemade ice cream at Good N Plenty and dedicated to @Mela99 This does not make up for my bitterness about not going to Shady Maple. 

     

    Today was........something. I'm remembering why I don't sign up for church-related things anymore. As a child, I always wanted to see a show there and I figured you're never too old for cute goats. I was slightly confused when I found out we would be seeing a production of Jonah but it ranks pretty low on the "potentially problematic" bible stories for me. 

    BOY WAS I WRONG. 

    I'll start off by saying the set design for the show was FANTASTIC. I want to hug the entire production team (especially the stage manager calling all those cues!) and feed them the baked good of their choice. The music is sung live over a pre-recorded instrumental track so there were a few timing issues but nothing that made the show unbearable. 

    I'm lying, there's one song where the harmonies are really grating. 

    Anyway, I'm sitting semi-enjoying the show, smelling too many roasted almonds, and crying over the worst $3 cup of watery iced coffee for all of act one. I shoot off a few texts to family members who I thnk would enjoy the show and settle in for act two. Now they open the show by explaining that they take some creative license with the storyline, biblical purists need not apply. Cool. I was not prepared for what was coming next.  

    (White) Jonah is projected out of the whale and onto.....an island full of brown natives. These are nice natives (they give him a donkey and clothes!) but they're definitely presented as an "other". Ok...slightly perturbed but we can still recover.

    S/N: Being surrounded by whale stomach acid for 3 days turned Jonah's hair from brown to boyband blonde. Seriously, it's in the script.

    Jonah Timberlake rides up to the gates of the city full of "evil people with no good in their hearts" who live by the motto "For the honor of Ninevah NEVER SHOW MERCY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" full of condensation general disgust. Hmm, I wonder what kind of evil no good people he'll find within the city limits? 

    Black People. 

    Brown People. 

    People in shades darker than "HOA Beige" because of course brown people are ALWAYS THE PROBLEM amen. 

    The king and queen of Ninevah (and their brown child) are the only major speaking roles portrayed by persons of color in this entire damn show.  

    I'm pissed. I'm literally shaking. 

    The Ninevites sing songs that are more gospel than musical theatre. I just shake my head.  

    Honestly, don't ask me any of the finer plot points of this section because I was about 300% done by then. After Jonah's little vine dies I'm hoping they do an awkward curtain call and call it a day. Of course, you can't end the show on this wonderful (seriously, the moral is prophet or not- don't be an asshole) without having an appearance from the most important figure in American Christianity.

     White Jesus™ shows up. 

    That's right folks! No longer relegated to the much shorter New Testament, White Jesus™ makes an appearance just in time to teach Jonah a lesson and then walk off, hair blowing in the breeze. 

    If I had been any closer to an exit I would have walked out. They sing one last song in true curtain call form and then White Jesus™ makes another appearance just in time for the final pose. Then they do an abbreviated altar call. 

    TL;DR White Jesus™ is white and colored folks are evil.

  13.      I have suddenly become one of those people who constantly takes pictures of their food! I know it's not cool anymore. I feel like my FIL who struts around in a white track suit wearing sunglasses, or with his sweatshirt tucked into his jeans.

          I made a mushroom melt on pumpernickel bread with a Greek cheese I can't spell, much less pronounce.

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          Here is my cute cat picture I promised to show. It's a dirty click bait trick. I know very few FJers can resist cutepet pictures.

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  14. I have been rebuked by a fellow FJer for doing the cleaning post wrong. So, here's an attempt at doing it right.

    Today was the day of the week where my job makes us clean the ceiling fans. My boss took the initiative, telling me I'd better get off my cell phone and do some actual work if I was interested in getting paid. I purposed in my heart that I would dust the ceiling fans.

    While I went to the office to flip the switch that would turn on the fans, I thought about death. Would death be preferable to cleaning ceiling fans? If I fell off the ladder and broke my neck, did I know where I was going? What would happen if I fell of the ladder and broke my ankle? I would just have to trust in the lord that everything would be ok.

    I purposed in my heart to be brave, and prayed that God would give me the courage to climb that ladder, for lo, I do not like heights.

    I took the long handled dust mop, climbed the ladder, and wiped the blades with the dust mop. Since we clean our ceiling fans for Jesus every week, there wasn't much dust to begin with, and I forgot to take pictures. The before and after ones would have looked the same anyway, since everything here gets cleaned all the time. 

    After getting off that really high really scary ladder, I spent all the rest of the day praying for forgiveness for all my sins. Praise the Lord.

     

    There, was that better? Sort of? I really do hate that stupid ladder, but I exaggerated exactly how much it freaks me out. Well....sort of.....

     

  15. Accentuate the Positive

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    halcionne
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    I haven't posted because I've had a hell of a time eliminating everything I need to in order to give this experiment a fair shot, primarily chocolate. And Diet Coke. :my_dodgy: 

    The good news (I guess) is that I can tell now that those foods make me sick, so I have even more reason to cut them out. The GAPS Diet prescribes lots of fermented foods, so I was hoping to come up with a homemade, fizzy, fermented drink to replace the soda, like fermented lemonade or beet kvass, but I haven't had much luck with that. Here is the Jinger (heehee) bug that I starved to death. 

    Spoiler

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    And an attempt at an apple cranberry kvass that went moldy on day three, so I refuse to continue with it. Some sources say to remove the mold and keep going, but that's just too squicky for me.

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    So I've been eating a lot of homemade chicken soup with sour cream or yogurt stirred in, and I like it. It makes me feel healthy and like I'm taking good care of myself. I got an Instant Pot for Christmas so I plan on trying to make my own yogurt soon.

    Has anyone had good results with small batch fermenting at home?

  16. I've recently been playing around with watercolors a lot (mostly because I wanted to paint something nice for my bestie for her birthday) and I just kinda wanted to show off some of the things I've done recently. So this post now exists. 

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    Most of these are from my #drawweirdaleveryday project (which I gave up for a long while but am now doing again) but the cat is my friend's cat Khéops. I painted that for her birthday. 

    I've got one more I could show, but it's not quite done (it's also meant to be a surprise yet and its recipient hasn't seen it yet). 

    ART!

     

     

     

  17.     So this is the beginning of a blog. Just something I can write out that may or may not be interesting. I am Sadie. I am 30. I work in the local hospital, providing care for psych patients. I am also a mom of 3. My oldest has autism and my youngest is hyper as heck. I am married to Micah, a die hard atheist who is an engineer. Probably the most interesting of all things is that we were raised in a religious cult until we were adults (ish. I was 17.) So there will be posts of the struggles that everyone goes through when they leave. It can be hardcore. 

       So basically today I'll just go into a bit of it. It was patriarchal, women were oppressed hard. We were subjected to four hour long church services, multiple times a week, and were beaten if we did not comply. My family decided to leave when I was 17 due to them trying to marry me off to my husband, as a minor, and because of the disrespect my mom was given. We've never looked back.  My husbands family left probably five years ago, because of how my mother in law was treated. My father in law is still struggling. It should also be pointed out that my husband's grandfather is now the leader.  We will go into all of this later at some point because oh how I've got stories. 

       Other things I will probably blog about are my patients (without violating HIPAA) and how I am in a quest to find a way to help the ones with dementia a bit more than, I already do, fashion, or my lack of, music, because oddly enough I sing opera and am a huuuuuuuuuuuuge music nerd, Maybe some books, definitely my kids, and stuff like diet and all that crap. So please enjoy. I promise I'll try to be a regular at this. 

  18. Tonight's song I've been listening to over and over is "I'm Not the Man" by Ben Folds. I am basically trying to find every live version I can on youtube. I have been obsessed with this song since the album came out. It gives me a lump in my throat when I listen to it sometimes. In February, I'll be seeing Ben live with a local orchestra. I have no clue if he'll play this one but I might go a bit crazy if he does.

    A lovely live version is behind the spoiler tag.

    Spoiler

     

    In high school, I liked the song "Brick" by Ben Folds Five.  But I never really listened to Ben Folds much until around maybe 2010 or so. Since then, I've been kind of obsessed. I listen to him almost every single day. I'm not sure if that's healthy or not...ha! He just has so many great songs. The one I posted above is from his most recent album. I've only seen him perform live once in 2012. We're finally seeing him again next year and I am so freaking excited about it. As dumb and cliche and it sounds....his music has really helped me get through tough times. This won't be the last Ben song I post here.

  19.    It's done!! Oh friends we are so happy it's done! It looks fantastic! Our new wall tree came too and we got it put up and our coats on it. Now just waiting for the floor to acclimate and we'll get it down probably next week. We do have a few more things to hang in the front room, some photos and the Jolly Roger flag over a window as well as a ships wheel and some nautical themed lights.

     

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  20. SpoonfulOSugar
    Latest Entry

    I won't be returning to FJ.

    If anyone would like to connect with me, my email is sunnygoldfinch at gmail dot com.

  21. Gilda is our 2nd oldest female, after Lily. Gilda's loves are cardboard boxes, straws, plastic spoons, and potato chips. Fluffybutt loves her some potato chips.  That's about the only people food she's ever touched. You could set a steak dinner in front of her and she would just look confused.  Like Josie, she has her own language of sorts. She has a very soft and delicate meow that we only hear once in a while. She sort of grunts and gurgles in response to us - like she says 'err! err .' She also has a penchant for wanting to play with my nail art supplies and polish whenever it's out. 

     

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  22. Grapefruit Marmalade

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    So the MLB regular season has ended and the playoffs start tomorrow.  Thanks to the Giants sweeping their series against the Dodgers this past weekend, my Cardinals are out of the playoffs for the first time since 2010. :(  Because I love baseball, I'll watch anyway.  Now I have to decide which team to root for.

    The teams playing for it all are:

    American League: Orioles, Red Sox, Blue Jays, Rangers, Indians

    National League: Cubs, Mets, Giants, Dodgers, Nationals

    I'm a National League fan all the way; so by process of elimination, cross off the American League teams.  I grew up watching the Cubs because my family, especially my dad, liked them.  Watching those games led me to watch other National League teams.  Besides that, I didn't like American League games because they used the designated hitter, which (to me) simplified the game and removed a level of strategy. (However, if I had to choose an American League team, I guess I'd choose the Blue Jays because I saw them in Toronto earlier this year and had fun, even if my poor arms fried to a crisp because some certain dummy *points at self* didn't bring or buy sunscreen that day.)

    Re: the National League teams... (and I will probably root for whichever one of them makes it to the World Series)

    Nationals: Nah. No attachment to them. I only know who a few of their players are and have no strong feelings about them either way. 

    Dodgers: Nah. See: Nationals, although I do like Clayton Kershaw. Also, if they'd won even one game against the Giants this weekend, the Cardinals would have at least played the Giants in a tiebreaker to determine who'd go to the Wild Card game. Thanks for nothing, Dodgers.  That, and they didn't even give Vin Scully one last chance to broadcast a winning game this weekend. Nice sendoff...not.

    Mets: Up until last year, I'd have said no way in Hades. There's a back story there I won't go into. Suffice it to say that the hate is gone and I could like them again. They're an interesting group and they've overcome A LOT of injuries to make it this far.  If they make it to the World Series, I'll pull for them. Until then...probably not.

    Giants: Normally I would pull for them.  Normally I like them.  But I'm feeling a bit not-fannish (yeah, I know, that's not a word) toward them after they went out and won every night the Cardinals won during that last week of the season. Couldn't they have lost even one game to give the Cardinals a chance? Besides that, even though I know it was in their best interest to cut Tim Lincecum loose after last season, dang it, I liked him! To me, they're not the same team without him. Maybe better, maybe worse...but to me, less interesting.  

    Cubs: Hmmm. Until about 4 years ago, they would have been my no-brainer choice. You see, I grew up a Cubs fan, as I said above. Dad was a Cubs fan and the family followed. Several times, we all hopped on the bus and the L and rode up to Wrigley Field to watch them play. Eventually (except for one year when my sister went with me instead), it was just Dad and I who went. Later, I went alone. In 1989, when they made the playoffs, I sat on the phone from Friday evening to late Sunday afternoon trying to get through to Ticketmaster to get tickets. I finally got through, got 4 single seats for Game 1, and then proceeded to watch them lose to the Giants 11-3. Yes, I was a diehard Cubs fan.  But that love affair went sour along about 1997, when I worked for a creep who had bought season tickets along with a bunch of his business cronies. One afternoon, the jerk ordered me to go up to Wrigley and scalp his tickets for that game on the street near the ballpark. I was so ashamed and embarrassed. Another day, he invited me to take the afternoon out of the office and go to the game, only to leave after a few innings and return to the office, where he ripped into me so badly that I was catatonic the rest of the day and that weekend.  I never went to another game until 2003, when I took my now ex-boyfriend to a game. (He is one guy I should have just stayed friend with and not gone any further. But I digress.) Eventually, I got fed up with their losing ways and what appeared to me to be apathy on ownership's part. Did they not care about the product they put on the field? Didn't look that way to me. Of course, I didn't realize what they were doing (intentionally gutting the roster and rebuilding from the bottom of the farm system on up to improve the team)...I had just had enough. I was done. I wanted to follow a team that I could tell knew what it was doing.

    In the meantime, Dad passed on; my oldest sister and her family became Cardinals fans; my other sister followed her (my brother and other sister never showed much interest in baseball); and I moved away from the Chicago area and into Cardinals territory. I'd always liked the Cardinals, even though they and the Cubs were bitter rivals; so when I decided I'd had enough of the Cubs once and for all, it was obvious to me which team to follow. (Interesting story: one day, maybe Christmas 2013?, I announced to everyone that I was officially a Cardinals fan. My nephew ordered me to walk over to him; when I did, he swept me up in a big hug and said, "Welcome home.")

    The Cubs and the Cardinals are bitter rivals. My sister used to go to Wrigley when the Cardinals played the Cubs there and says she, as a Cardinals fan, always got beer dumped on her. I turned my back on the Cubs. It wouldn't be right for me to decide to root for them now...that is called being a fair-weather fan and that's not right, not after I said I was through with them.  Yes, they're interesting to watch. Yes, they seem to be having so much fun; and I have to admit, I've watched a few more games than I should have watched.  

    So...which team do I choose?  I've got until Friday to decide. LOL

  23. So as I mentioned the other week, I'm moving. TOMORROW, in fact. I've been a bit sad to move out of my little flat - it's in a rough area but I haven't had any issues - at least until today when I noticed some douchebag had KEYED MY CAR.

    Seriously? My second-to-last day of parking here and someone decides to key it. Luckily, it's not too bad - i managed to rub the surface off and it's not as bad as it looked initially. Just to make matters worse though - I didn't even notice until the man who'd come to fix my windscreen pointed it out. Yep, in the space of a week my windscreen cracked and my car got keyed. LOL. What the hell.

    I'm doing okay, though. It will be expensive to fix and I'm pretty protective of my car, but at the end of the day - it's a hunk of metal and I'm not hurt. Things could always be worse.

  24. This week I have accomplished something great, HUGE even:

    I have finally found shoes that don't make my little toes feel like they somehow missed their amputation appointment.

    Color - check
    Ease of purchase - check
    Ability to reorder 1000000 pairs at once - near check (I actually want to wear them a bit more first to make sure they'll hold up ok).
    No attack of the allergies while shopping - check
    NO squished painful toes! - CHECK!

    You have no idea how happy I am about this. YEARS and MANY shoes of attempted this made me wonder if it might be impossible without emptying my bank account. Apparently it IS possible. YAY! I'm so happy. I once found a pair of shoes when I was really desperate that were good, except they were something like 5 times my budget at the time which wasn't really possible.

    So, long live internet shopping and long may I be able to purchase shoes with free return, and no import taxes.

    (and may internet shopping greatly improve. I got my feet scanned so I could find out what shoes would fit best and the damn thing won't even tell me that. I have to look at each individual shoe *sigh* At least the scan did inform me that I have WIDE feet, and thus I'm not imagining that ;) )
     

    The search for work/formal shoes/boots continues. I ordered some 'wide' ankle boots online. People complained in the reviews that they were too wide. I try them on and was so terribly terribly saddened. I'm not sure how much foot binding those reviewers did in their youth, but those boots made me want to get rid of 2 full toes spread over 3 toes, on each foot. They were NOT wide enough. I guess the bonus was I could actually squeeze my feet into the boots. There have been times in the last five years and the 100s or possibly 1000s of shoes/boots tried on, where it just wasn't possible to do that.

    And I guess while I talk about footwear, it's time I got some new gardening shoes. I don't know what I want, or how to find cheap enough footwear that'll fit, is sturdy enough and won't get full of dirt every time I step outside (ok ok, today it was manure and dirt)

    Then I might need some gumboots , and I'll be sorted for the next 20 years. One may dream right?

  25. Looking for Love

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    GoddessOfVictory
    Latest Entry

    Why put this all online instead of talking to my friends? I’ve always been the listener in my friend group, but when it comes to talking about my own life I tend to feel like I’m wasting their time. Plus, almost all of them are married now, and have children. They've long since left this stage of life in the dust.

    Why one more year? Because dating is exhausting and I’m tired of the cycle of crushing to crushed and back again. Because if I continue waiting for the one, I’m afraid the rest of life will pass me by.

    A little background about me – I’m in my early thirties and I’ve never been in love. Growing up I was always the shy, ugly girl that no guys paid attention to. However, I have had one boyfriend in the recent past. It was not a match made in heaven.

    Here are the current key people:

    The Ex – Twenty-five years my senior. Half of the time he is one of the most generous guys you’d ever meet. The other half, he’s an emotionally abusive, unapologetic a**hole. He’s a workaholic who hasn’t taken a day off in over a year. To complicate matters,  we still work together and are still friends.

    The Brit – My current crush. He lives in England. I do not. He’s cute and has that oh-so-sexy accent. We frequent the same forum and belong to a group chat on Skype. We have a lot in common but he might have his eye on someone else.

    Muscle Man – Met through a mutual friend. He really likes to work out. Me? Not so much. We used to go to school together but never had any of the same classes. Our mutual friend claims he’s interested, but he took three months to get in contact. Not sure we have much in common but I’m willing to get to know him.

  • Posts

    • ViolaSebastian

      Posted

      New video! Long story short: suck it up, buttercup. Serve your husband. Find the good things about him. Figure out his Love Language. What about your Love Language? Well, Lori says fuck your Love Language, this isn't about you, this is about serving your husband. 

       

    • JermajestyDuggar

      Posted

      20 minutes ago, Seahorse Wrangler said:

      Me too...

       

      Cynical Seahorse is thinking the woman who wanted 'the literature' was another pro-lier  friend of TAM who was trying to provoke the police into action.

      I was actually hoping it was someone who hates these protesters and wanted to get her in trouble. But I’m petty like that.

    • samurai_sarah

      Posted (edited)

      55 minutes ago, Lgirlrocks said:

      Same goes for men. Being mad and upset can look ugly on anyone. Period. Fuck that shit about women always having to smile. It’s annoying and tiring. I do smile a lot but if I don’t feel like it I shouldn’t have to. 85D7FAE5-9A5E-4E7E-B06E-13195BC71467.thumb.png.aeb65468f2478f545eeb4a935c0a904b.png

      Lori is so wrong. My housemates, when I was a student, my housemates used to tell me that "We aren't afraid when you're shouting. We shit ourselves when you're calm and smiling...".

       

      Edited by samurai_sarah
    • Seahorse Wrangler

      Posted

      3 hours ago, NachosFlandersStyle said:

      Ehh, I can certainly imagine being proud of civil disobedience for a *worthwhile* cause. It's the part about harassing individuals who are just trying to go about their business that I don't understand.

      Me too...

       

      Cynical Seahorse is thinking the woman who wanted 'the literature' was another pro-lier  friend of TAM who was trying to provoke the police into action.

    • Purrl

      Posted

      I doubt she cut it too, but maybe the hairstylist at the Bates wedding convinced her to.



  • Recent Status Updates

    • mollysmom

      mollysmom

      Almost lost my little dog Molly today  Thankfully she seems to be ok but the next 24 hours are crucial. My ex husband came home to find her blanket wrapped around her neck real tight and she was just laying on the floor. He got her untangled and the blanket had blood on it and she had pooped and peed (probably so scared while it was happening) She started coughing up blood and her one eye is all bulged out and bloody. He called me and I told him to get her to the nearest emergency vet and I would meet him there. They said she's really lucky to be alive. They said to keep a close eye on her breathing the next 24 hours but after that if she's ok she should be fine. They sent her home with eyedrops and an anti-inflammatory medicine for her little neck. I'm so happy that she is ok but man, my heart is broken just thinking about how terrified my poor little baby was! I really really hope dogs have short memories so she doesn't remember this but even thinking about how she was most likely struggling just breaks my heart. I know she's "just" a dog so this is probably silly to alot of people, I totally get that, but she is my baby. I never had children. Molly is my baby. Everytime I think about how she was probably feeling I just cry. But I'm so glad she's alive.
      · 6 replies
    • AliceInFundyland

      AliceInFundyland

      Ch. 3 Sneak Attack
      While in bed, two ants appear on my arm. Instead of approaching this logically, I spray the ant spray straight behind my nightstand.
      Unventilated.
      Immediately. Don't do that.
      · 3 replies
    • melon

      melon  »  clueliss

      clueliss,I love your profile pic.
      I have 3 torties.I have 3 tabbies and 1 black or tuxedo cat.
      · 0 replies
    • HerNameIsBuffy

      HerNameIsBuffy

      Got up at 6:30 and made kids’ breakfast before they went to work.  Cleaned up and laid back down for a second to plan what I was going to do this morning aaaaannnnndddd...
      Just woke up a little after noon.  
      Just me and the fur kiddos and I’m trying really hard not to follow sleeping in with a long nap.
      · 3 replies
    • VelociRapture

      VelociRapture

      It’s Father’s Day in the States today. I hope everyone celebrating has a lovely day and everyone having a difficult time - for any reason - has a peaceful one. ❤️
      · 0 replies
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