Dec. 18th, 2006 11:10 am
omimouse: Digital painting of a mouse wielding a spear (Default)
In case I never mentioned it before, I've always been lousy at keeping up with diaries and journals and whatnot. Especially so when life is going mostly smoothly.

We have (sort of) done the December decorating. We have a very small fake tree set up on a stool, on account of not having room in the apartment for anything larger. It still looks very cute, and it has ornaments and blue beads and silver stuff. It's in front of one of our bookshelves, the one that we nailed four stockings to. There's more blue beading draping from stocking to stocking, and lights strung around the shelving a bit above that. It's a very nice effect.

I have made caramels, and they are good. This is an understatement of vast proportions, but it does not do to let the entire world know that you make an addictive substance in your kitchen. I will be asking [livejournal.com profile] warinbear to cut the sheets later this week, because that's the only way they'll get cut as opposed to eaten outright.

The three of us, [livejournal.com profile] reana and [livejournal.com profile] darcsyde took Bear-Cub and Puppy Christmas shopping yesterday. JoAnn's, a half-priced bookstore, and Marshalls. With lunch out between the bookstore and Marshalls. Started around 11:20 and Warin headed down to Huntsville with the girls at 3:00. Uff da. Those girls have frickin' energy.

[livejournal.com profile] louisadkins and I have a chiropracter appointment later today. We also need to get some gorcery shopping done. We'll do one more grocery run on Thursday to get some of the more perishable stuff for Christmas dinner, and then we'll hole up in the apartment.

I'd almost forgtten how much running around tends to accompany this part of the year. -laugh- Ah, well. It's all good.
omimouse: Digital painting of a mouse wielding a spear (Default)
I love my children very much. No ifs, ands, or buts about it.

This does not make me any happier about the fact that Bear-Cub is slamming into a roller-coaster puberty at the same time that Phooka is hitting the Terrible Twos head-on. Puppy, apparantly feeling left out of all the emotional angst, has also decided to join in on the fun. Oh, and we're trying to potty-train Phooka. The past week has been one of the more draining ones.

Here follows my ordeal with Phooka. )
omimouse: Digital painting of a mouse wielding a spear (Default)
What's been going on, let's see . . . I turned 24 last week, on Sept. 8. Bear-Cub baked a surprise carrot cake for me on the day. Not that she knew it at the time, but carrot cake was my absolutely most favourite kind of cake when I was about her age. So, happy bouncy Omimouse. [livejournal.com profile] warinbear did something nasty to his back on Thurday night, and wound up going to see a doctor about it on Friday. We had the actual party for my birthday on Saturday. Tacos, cake, and ice cream. I worked on Warin's back for almost three hours straight that evening. It seems to have helped a lot; his pain levels were considerably lower on Sunday. [livejournal.com profile] catchild spent most of Saturday volunteering at the local Red Cross office.

We spent most of Sunday gaming. Good game, overall. I like playing an archer who is capable of hitting targets that are most of a mile away from her. Her bow is damn near bigger than she is, but it's a good bow. It's also enchanted, hence the phenomanal range.

Warin was feeling much better by today. We handled various and sundry housework stuff, and met the kids at the bus stop. Then Catchild checked her e-mail. She wound up using my computer, I think because hers was running something that meant no using it until it was done. When an incrediby angry looking Catchild poked her head out my bedroom door a few minutes later, I knew there was a problem.

Kathy (Warin's mom) contacted the school. She was looking for info about Bear-Cub's teachers, what classes she was in, when the school had open houses and PTA meetings, and so on and so forth. This after she had been told she was to have no contact with the girls. Period.

We'll be talking with the school about what we're going to do about this.
omimouse: Digital painting of a mouse wielding a spear (Default)
K e-mailed Bear-Cub today. She wanted Bear-Cub to let her know when her school's Open House Day was, so that K could be there. No, none of the adults got any contact about this, why do you ask?

This prompted a discussion between [livejournal.com profile] catchild, [livejournal.com profile] louisadkins, [livejournal.com profile] warinbear, and myself. We already know [livejournal.com profile] ebonunicorn's opinion on this; we will still be checking with him after he gets home from work this evening.

We will be notifying K that we are severing contact with her. End of story, no more chances, this was the last line.

[livejournal.com profile] chaiya, [livejournal.com profile] dimers, we don't know when we're going to be sending her the letter on this, but I figured that you guys would want the heads up on the shitstorm that will more than likely ensue after this. If you want a warning closer to the date, we can let you know then as well.

Warin and I talked with Bear-Cub about this a little while ago. She told us that she had been expecting this for a while. Bear-Cub is not happy about the situation, but it really looks like she's been preparing herself for this for a while now. We told her that she should feel free to talk with us, ask us questions, or just scream on this whole issue any time she needs/wants to. She knows that this is not her fault.

We will be talking with Puppy about this after she gets back from her playdate with a friend. Telling her that Nana won't be allowed to have any contact with her at all anymore will probably be one of the hardest things that any of us have ever done. Bear-Cub is old enough that she saw what was happening, and she had time to prepare for what she knew was going to happen as a result of it. Puppy is still too young to catch what's been happening, so this will more than likely come mostly out of the blue for her. Which means that it will hit hard.

I feel tired and very old right about now. None of us wanted this to happen. None of us wanted to do this.

But at least I know some measure of peace right now. Phooka, who has been emulating her sisters and calling K "Nana"; Phooka, who loves so easily and trusts so very completely; Phooka, my youngest daughter, will never look at me and ask with hurting eyes, "Mama Tante Omi, why doesn't Nana love me?"

EDIT: Wed., Aug 3, 14:00 This being my journal, I forgot that not everyone who reads it knows what's been going on between us and K. It suddenly occured to me that it might appear as though we're cutting ties over a few instances, and without trying to work anything out. K has been pulling stuff like this and far, far worse for at least as long as Warin and Catchild have been married. There have been several attempts to tell her that we consider her behaviour unacceptable. It does not appear to have had any real impact on her.

Just to let everyone know that we've been dealing with this for a very long time now, and that we have tried the less drastic routes.
omimouse: Digital painting of a mouse wielding a spear (Default)
So, over the weekend, [livejournal.com profile] warinbear's mom (K) e-mails Bear-Cub. K tells Bear-Cub that the Huntsville Public Library will be having a birthday party for Harry Potter on Monday (today) and that she thought that Bear-Cub and her sister would be interested. Oh, and if no one else could drive, she could play driver for them.

We decided to go ahead and go. Let the kids spend some time with their Nana, let me spend some time with some very good friends. I practically grew up in that library. I was a volunteer and an employee there. I have friends there that remember me from when I was 7 years old. Therefore, I was perfectly fine with being around K there. My turf, y'see. Well, as fine with being around her as I was ever going to be. We drove ourselves, taking 2 cars so that [livejournal.com profile] louisadkins could go with me, [livejournal.com profile] catchild and all three girls.

Meeting old friends (library itself included in that category) was wonderful, the event was fun, all three girls had a blast. Phooka was in heaven in the toddler section. Catchild got to say hi to folks that she had met through me a few years ago, and I got to introduce Louis to old friends of mine.

Fast-forward about an hour and a half, to 5:30 in the evening. Catchild and I were needing food rather badly at that point. Louis goes in search of the two older girls. He found them with K. He told them that we needed to leave to get food, and that we needed to leave now. K was getting out pictures to show them at the same time that he was saying this. She said that she could just show them to the girls real quick first. Kids ignored Louis and dove into the pictures. Self-satisfied smile from K that the girls missed. Louis repeated himself on the needing to leave now angle four more times. He was ignored by both girls and by K. Fourth time, he informed the girls that if they did not move, they were going directly to bed upon our arrival at home.

Bear-Cub and Puppy moved. Bear-Cub was highly upset with having to go, and not happy about having a potential punishment tossed at her. Louis was (and still is) understandably upset about being ignored by both children and adult. Especially since Bear-Cub and K both know that Catchild is hypoglycemic. Bear-Cub also knows very well what happens when either of her mommies don't get food when they need to.

K was very obvious in comforting (and in my opinion, egging on) the upset Bear-Cub.

Okay. In review, that might seem like a small thing to be furious with a grandparent over. To review: K deliberately undermined Louis's authority with the girls. By example, she showed them that it was okay to ignore him. She then demonstrated to the girls that she felt that they shouldn't have gotten into any kind of trouble over it. She has done this to me, to [livejournal.com profile] ebonunicorn(Drkn), and to Catchild. I do not know if she has done it to Warin. I do know that both myself and Drkn usually catch most of it.

If past experience is any indication, the older girls will most likely ignore both myself and Louis for about a week or so.

I was furious and damn near hysterical with hurt and anger when we got home. I am now feeling very cold. K has finally crossed a line in my mind, and she has finally pushed to far.

My official parental vote on anything involving K is that the kids should not have contact with her. At all. Period. She refuses to stop undermining our parental authority with the girls. By doing so, she is teaching them by example that they do not have to listen to us or take us seriously. She is toxic, and it is my opinion that if we don't really trust her to be alone with the girls in the first place, why in the name of Hell are we letting her anywhere near our daughters at all? Yes, cutting her out of their lives now would hurt, but I think it's time we were actually honest with our children instead of hoping that K won't do something that'll screw them up for life.

Oh, wait. It's already to late on that front, isn't it? I say tell them the truth, hold them, hug them, remind them that we love them and that this is not their fault. Tell them all the things that we haven't been telling them about their Nana. And then get her the fuck out of their lives before she destroys them while we're waiting for her to do something 'obvious'.

My stance on this is no longer open to debate.

P.S. Catchild, I am not angry with you, this is not your fault, and I still love you very much, as I likely always will. While I am addressing several of your points, I am not upset with you. Okay?
omimouse: Digital painting of a mouse wielding a spear (Default)
The kids went off to camp yesterday. We go pick them up on Friday.

The silence in the house may very well drive me mad before then. True parenthood is not colic, school, laundry, PTA, or stepping on a toy at three in the morning. True parenthood is when you realize that you're on edge because you haven't heard a single argument all day. It is when you consider getting a tape made of your children fighting so that when they are away for longer than a school day, you don't go bat-shit crazy.

Thankfully, Phooka is still here and seems to be enjoying the chance to have us all to herself for a while. That or she's enjoying not having to fight the older girls for her toys. Still not sure on that one.

She's learning more and more each day, at one helluva pace. Her language skills are getting better on a daily basis, and she is finally starting to figure out cause and effect. As in: If I haul this cat around by the ears/tail/paws/belly fur, said cat will claw me until I let go. For their part, the cats are moving her from the 'kitten' to 'juvenile' category.

Topic shift to Games:
In between massive planning for my game this weekend, I've been playing Fallout on the computer. I have oficially decided that the 'rifle' category ranks as having the best weapons evah. It is absolutely wonderful to sneak into an area, go into combat mode, and be halfway across the screen from the things you're shooting at. While pulling off accurate called shots to the eyes. I do think that the AI is a bit on the slow side. Sure, I sneak good and all that, but when the flesh of the guard next to you melts off of his bones, which then collapse in a little pile on the floor (I love the effects of a critical with a plasma rifle), wouldn't you be just a bit suspicious? Just a bit? Just standing there doing nothing is somewhat idiotic, is all I'm saying. Especially when the green bolt from the plasma rifle goes right past one guard's face to hit the guy in front of him. Into this category also fall the idiots who use rocket launchers at point blank range. Or who use a burst weapon or flamer on you when one of their buddies is in the way, killing their buudy and leaving you mostly unscathed.

Then again, it may be that they owed said buddy a larege sum of cash, on account of being too stupid to know when to leave the poker table.
omimouse: Digital painting of a mouse wielding a spear (Default)
I forgot how long the mourning process takes. While the timing of Oma's death was sudden, I had been expecting it for at least five years. I knew it was coming. I had time to prepare, to come to terms with it. When she died, it still hurt. It just took a lot less time for me to finish saying goodbye, and to be able to think about her without it hurting. It's different when you don't have time to prepare. It hits you like a knife, and it can take years for the knife to slowly twist its way out of your heart and gut.

Especially when you lost someone, not to death, but to . . . I still don't know what we lost her to, to be honest. When I feel bitter about it, I get snarly about how I never really knew there was a problem until it went boom, because no one fuckin' talked to me, but that's only when I feel particularly bitter about it.

[livejournal.com profile] ebonunicorn's son, Nik is up for the weekend. Apparantly, he'd been to an SCA thingie in the past week or two. He met Reana's son, L there. He told Bear-Cub and Puppy that he met L, and that L told him that he'd "broken up" with Bear-Cub, and that he no longer like her or Puppy. He was very insistent about this. Bear-Cub said something to the effect of "he never would've said something like that", and Nik got very set on it. Bear-Cub and Puppy were in tears for over thirty minutes.

I don't know what to think, or what in all of this is truth, and what isn't. I know that I'm not angry or upset at any of the kids involved. When adults fight, all too often it is the children who pay the price.

I'm just so very, very tired of all of this. I will probably never know all of what happened between Drkn, Reana, and Catchild. This means that I will also probably never know what caused the relationship between the three of them to explode so badly. All I know is that we are still mourning. I am still mourning. And my two eldest daughters have more than likely lost people that were very close and important to them.

And every now and then, the knife hits a nerve on its slow, painful way out.
omimouse: Digital painting of a mouse wielding a spear (Default)
It has been a long, busy weekend. [livejournal.com profile] louisadkins and I saw SW3 Friday night. At the Imax at Opry Mills up in Nashville.

Let me just for the record state that I hope that whomever designed the highway and interstate exchange in Nashville navigates it eternally in the sixth circle of Hell that Louis and I decided said road system is. It is nasty. Especially with major construction going on in several areas. If I don't have to get anywhere near Briley Parkway for a year, it'll still be too soon. We will not even go into how often I had to bounce lanes to stay on I-65 south, or the panicked moment when I thought that I was on I-40 east because the signs are the very opposite of helpful anywhere the three interstates that go through Nashville meet each other. [livejournal.com profile] warinbear knows how to navigate that acid-tripping spider's web of roads. I take a navigator, spend a lot of time changing lanes, and pray to Hermes a lot.

That said, the movie was good. Not as good as ESB, but it was still good. I do think that Lucas should be threatened with severe groinal injury and extreme bludgeoning damage to his hands if he ever even thinks about writing romantic dialogue again. And I never, ever, ever want to be anything less than ten minutes early for a movie ever again, 'cause we got there just as they were starting the trailers, and the only seats left were the ones in the front row. At an Imax. My neck is just now starting to consider forgiving me for that.

The rest of the family went out to see the movie on Saturday, with me and Louis staying home with Phooka. We had a fun day together. She was bright and cheerful and chipper and fell asleep in the car on the way back from our minor shopping trip with part of a chicken nugget still clenched in her hand.

It was good to get to spend time with her like that. She loves going out to go shopping, and she loves getting to munch on french fries and nuggets while looking out the car window. I want to personally bless, thank, kiss, and possibly bestow sexual favours on whomever came up with the idea for the child-lock on car doors, by-the-by. Phooka's car-seat is directly behind the driver's seat in Juliette, and the child-lock was the only reason that the door next to her stayed closed. She is fascinated by the door-handle, and will play with it for a good deal of time, trying to figure out how it works.

Need to go get into bed now.
omimouse: Digital painting of a mouse wielding a spear (Default)
Must calm down. Must calm the ever lovin' fuck down.

Right. The events of this evening proceeded thusly:

I took Sadie (our black and tan Aussie Shepard) for a walk, and then brought her inside to continue the ongoing process of getting the cats used to her and getting her familiar with the family's scents. After a little bit, I asked Bear-Cub to please take her back down to her house in the chicken-barn. Said barn, FTR, is within easy sight of the house. Puppy asked to go with. [livejournal.com profile] catchild said sure, go ahead. They were planning on playing in the effective front yard (considered to be the grounds in front of the house that can easily be seen from the house) after they settled Sadie in.

Go to one hour later. We figure that it's time to call the kids in at this point. They're not obviously seeable from the house. No biggie, they have an area or two that they're allowed to play in where we can't see them from the house, 'cause those spots are very close to the house. As in, maybe a thirty second walk. The ground dips oddly, and the pole barn is in the way.

Catchild calls a few times. No response. Catchild walks up the driveway, to see if they've taken Sadie up the hill to the neighbour's house to show Sadie off to one of their friends. She checks the chicken barn as she walks past. No kids up at the end of the driveway, no one at all up the hill, no sign of the kids anywhere. I step out onto the front porch and get told this.

I spent about 12 seconds inhaling in prep for calling the kids. For those of you that have heard my voice, I actively worked at projecting as strongly as I could when I exhaled on Bear-Cub's name. For those of you that haven't: I have been told, by just about everybody that has heard my voice when I slip and unconciously project a little while speaking, that my voice qualifies as a weapon. I am not exagerating in the slightest when I say that the entire valley heard me call her.

I heard what sounded like the kid's voices, off to the right of the house. I let Catchild know that I'd heard them, so that she would know that we didn't need the cops. It turns out that she had dialed the first number when I told her this. Kid's voices arguing.

"Get. Your. Butts. Home. NOW."

Cessation of argument. Bear-Cub's voice: "We're coming!" Five minutes later, they were in view. Catchild went down to meet them.

Catchild, [livejournal.com profile] louisadkins, and myself have all lectured them. In calm, precise voices. They each have an essay on basic wilderness survival and a story about a mommy who has lost her children to turn in. Bear-Cub has a basic report on human predators as well. She also got an age appropriate talk of a somewhat more specific nature on human predators from myself and her Uncle Louis as well.

This is the second time that they've done something like this. Bear-Cub has been informed, point-blank, that if she does this for a third time, the lecture will become more explicit. In ways that she very clearly did not want it to become.

[livejournal.com profile] warinbear you get to lecture them tomorrow, if you wish. I am going to go relax now. I have an incredibly vivid imagination, fueled by a knowledge of Catchild's foremost abuser, and his persistence.

And I know a fair amount of what he did to her. My mind is currently a pictoral view of Hell. No, Catchild says that Hell is nicer.

I don't think I've ever been so scared in all my adult life.
omimouse: Digital painting of a mouse wielding a spear (Default)
So I was walking past the sunroom this morning. We have Ebon's son over, he and the girls are playing with the Play-Dough, happy, happy, waitaminute, what did I just hear?

"So you won't talk?" "Never!" "Feed her poison!"

I poked my head through the doorway and informed the kids that this was Not An Apprpriate Game, and to please find something else to play. The said okay. I walked off, slightly wincing, but I figured, okay, now they know, no problem, right?

About five minutes later, as I'm headed for the laundry machines, which are right next to the sunroom, I hear the kids again: "Get the eyedropper. Squirt it in his eyes!" "AAAHH! I can't see!" "Tie his mouth shut."

Right. The kids were told to put the Play-Dough up and to come sit on the couch when they were done with that. I went and got [livejournal.com profile] warinbear, because I wasn't sure if I could properly explain why this was not an appropriate game. I asked them why they continued to play after being told to pick a different game. "We couldn't think of anything else that we wanted to play."

My husband wound up explaining to our children what torture was (which is what they were playing) and during this, Ebon and [livejournal.com profile] catchild enter the room. After they got caught up on the situation, we had the wonderful fun of deciding proper discipline for the kids.

We're handling it by removing from them various of the privileges they had gained for mature behaviour, seeing as how they haven't been handling the mature behaviour part of that very well. They are banned from RPGs, movies rated higher than G, various board games, and various books. The ban is currently subject to monthly review, with the potential to be lifted on evidence of sufficiently mature behaviour. Bear-Cub, the ten-year-old, is reacting in a pissy, grouchy, surly, and generally whiny and wailing manner. Puppy, who is six, realized real quick that this particular ban didn't touch much of anything that she was all that interested in/old enough for in the first place, so she shrugged and accepted it. Seeing as how she was going along with the other kids' idea on this one, it sort of evens out, IMO.

If this were the first instance, we wouldn't be reacting like this. This is far from the first instance of this sort of game, and they have a distressing tendency to try such games on each other and/or the cats. And almost always when Ebon's son is around. My opinion of the boy's bio mother and step-father (now legal father) are not repeatable in civil company. Suffice it to say that I have heard some of what they let him watch, and most of it was intended for very adult audiences. We're handling it by removing from them various of the privileges they had gained for mature behaviour, seeing as how they haven't been handling the mature behaviour part of that very well.

Stuff like this is not a game, and we're trying to get the message accross to them.

sigh Please pardon the typos in the above; my fingers are not cooperating with me right now.
omimouse: Digital painting of a mouse wielding a spear (Default)
Got to see something incredibly cute and adorable last night. The Phooka was refusing to sleep, so at about nine [livejournal.com profile] catchild brought the fussy baby out to [livejournal.com profile] warinbear, and asked if Poppa Bear would please work his magic. About thirty minutes later, I came back into our room to get something, and found [livejournal.com profile] warinbear asleep on the bed, on his back, cradling a sleeping Phooka on his chest. [livejournal.com profile] catchild and I giggled and grinned and gently woke the Bear up, since we both knew beter than to try and pry the baby out of his arms while he was still asleep. He brought her to her crib and gently laid her down. The picture that they made last night still gives me warm fuzzies.

Snowfalke went to the vet this Monday. He wasn't putting any weight at all on his rear left leg, so off to the vet he went. The vet was shocked to find that the leg wasn't broken. He does, however, have a pretty nasty infecion in that leg. She drained a pocket of blood with a needle, and gave us liquid anitibiotic to feed him at home. He's looking much beter now, and he's actually starting to join in the run and pounce games again.

I'm feeling really happy about the job Peter Jackson did with the LOTR movies right now. Bear-Cub watched the first extended DVD about three weeks ago, and the second one last week. Upon hearing that this trilogy was based on a book, her eyes got reeeally big, and she proceeded to try and find where on the shelves the books were. [livejournal.com profile] louisadkins brought down his large hardcover edition (the one that contains all three books) for her to read. She is diving into it with unfettered enthusiasim. This is one proud and happy Librarian mouse right now.

I am also in search of Dutch and German tapes, CDs, and books. Bear-Cub and Puppy both have started singing along with the Rammstein CDs, and their accent is almost flawless. I want to encourage this trend. I'm already trying to remember to chatter with the Phooka in Dutch on a frequent basis. Anyone got any Muzzy stuff that they're wiling to part with? -hopeful look-

On a somewhat more grumpy note, I am also going to set aside time to educate Bear-Cub. She came home last year with the assingment of memorizing various parts of the Constitution. She asked me to help her study. After she'd finished reciting the piece she was supposed to memorize, I asked her, "Good. Now, tell me what it means. Her response boiled down to, "I don't have to know what it means, I just have to memorize it!"

Insert lots of shuddering and twitching, and several muffled screams. If the school has not educated her on the meaning Constitution by summer break, then I will. I have also been having lovely little history conversations with her. In general, I am trying to help her avoid falling into the one viewpoint only trap that so many American Social Studies textbooks contain.

My contribution to democracy: Education of the young.


omimouse: Digital painting of a mouse wielding a spear (Default)

January 2013

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