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Friday, July 30, 2010

Mom can I have the car?

And so it starts. Jennifer wants the car to meet her friends today down at an South King County theater and then they are going to go to dinner after. Which puts her home around 10 pm.

When I told hubby of this plan, he promptly declared it a waste of time and gas, and we could just as well go and drop her off and pick her up. I told him that it doesn't take that much gas to go where she's going. We've allowed her to do this before AND I don't think gas is the first thing on his mind.

Try the fact he's having problems with the daughter going out, at night, at all with the car.

I might just suggest she go to a matinee and try again later for a soiree with her pals at night.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Working with animals

Jennifer is deciding to maybe take a different track when looking for a summer job. Instead of working at fast food places, she's wondering if a zoo, aquarium or some other animal-related endeavor. I agree. Who wants to work at Abercrombie when you can work with a bald eagle, whales or cats/dogs that need a home.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

College hunt

The colleges keep trying to woo Jennifer. Dozens have sent e-mails, more e-mails "is this you, Jennifer?" e-mails, posters, fliers, postcards and gee gaws.

She's looking for a college that will offer a good biology course and one that is far away from us. I think, personally,the thought of living 3,000 miles away might be more attractive than the reality of 3,000 miles away.

At the rate the stock market is going, she'll either have to pick one college from the tuition exchange, or she'll have to win a scholarship. I just hope it isn't to a college 3,000 miles away. Yes, I admit it, I'd miss her. And her dad, don't even get me started. Our travel and phone bills would break us.

Monday, July 26, 2010

One year and counting

It seemed to dawn on both Gary and I this weekend.

A year from now, Jennifer will be 18. And technically at least, a grown up.

So in light of that rapidly approaching date, we're going to make some new house rules.

She starts helping me pay the bills and monitor the savings account. This way, she'll know when I say "We don't have any $$ for that." I'm not making it up.

She's going to shop for the household one time a month (for the week) and cook dinner one time a week. AND, she's going to start washing her own laundry.

I know, I know, you're asking why she isn't doing that now. Well, blame her dad on that one. He's a bit of a fanatic about doing laundry all the time. Just as I'm a bit of a fanatic on cleaning up the kitchen. So Jennifer knows if she waits, guess what will be done for her?

We'll have to stop doing that.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Daughter off to the beach with friends

And I'm off the beach on the Beach Naturalist program. I just hope she slathers on the sunscreen, as thanks to her Irish, Norwegian heritage, she burns quickly.

And we nagged, asking her to stay away from one park where there seemed to be too many drownings this year.

"Mom, I can swim, you made sure of that."

"I know, I know, but the water is still too cold to be in it long, and there are stumps in the lake you wish to go to, and just humor us, OK?"

So she did. Grumbling all the way.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Daughter and I are cooking tonight

After our rather expensive foray into the int'l. food dept at Top Foods. Gary, my meat and potatoes hubby, at first said he was going out for burgers. But the promise of jerk chicken and a tiramisu cake drew him back into the fold.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Let's cook!

That's what Jennifer wanted to do when I got home at 6:30 pm tonight.

And she didn't mean dinner. She'd just flipped through a few of my Weight Watchers cook books and picked out about a dozen recipes she thought were cool. I told her after dinner, hoping she'd forget her HGTV dreams. She didn't. So to the store we drove, leaving $50 behind as we looked for scallions, rice noodles, garlic chili sauce and sesame seed oil ($7.99!) Ack.

But I figure she'll be leaving the house in a few years, so might as well encourage this cooking jag. If only she think about it at about 3 pm in the afternoon, so I could have dinner ready when we got home.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Don't even talk to me

Jennifer broke up with her b-friend, again and was in a foul mood. And it appears that this time, unlike the last 6, he isn't going to beg her to take him back.

I didn't know any of this until I was heading to the gym with her and only wanted to stay 25 min. She wanted to stay an hour or more to work off some frustration at the non-texting, non-calling Adam. I took her back around the block, grabbed the dog leash and was ready to let her go by herself, until Gary corralled me and told me to go with her, at least compromise on 45 min.

She and I road in stony silence to the gym, whereas she sat and cried in the car most of the time, rebuffing all my entries and so I ended up going to the gym for an hour to work out. But I was not in the mood to talk to her, nor she I and so we stalked into the house and went literally to our separate rooms. I don't think Gary knew what to do when the two women of the house weren't speaking to each other.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Mom, where are the gardening tools?

I guess this is a marker of just how bored my daughter is today. I'm back at work after two weeks (sigh) and she's home and supposed to be cleaning up her bathroom and the tv room.

And oh, she doesn't want to go to volleyball tonight. So, I told her fine on the v-ball, the clippers should be out on the deck and the leather gloves somewhere inside the house, so the dog won't eat them and cost us $500 in vet bills.

So, the weeds will get pulled. But as for the toilet scrubbed, probably not.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

You guys are loud!

That was the judgement we received from Adam, Jennifer's b-friend, as we came out of the bathroom at Border's yesterday.

We were talking about men, and the relative strengths and weaknesses of each sex, and concluded women were stronger overall (I'm sure adam's ears perked up at this). But he said that people were stopping and listening to our chatter from a couple feet away. So, we'll have to tone it down next time.

Blueberry pies

We didn't get to baking one yesterday, but plan to today. Whether it be the weight watcher's version, or not, I don't know. Jennifer, obv. doesn't care about the calories, but I do, so we'll see.

Friday, July 16, 2010

The grinch has arrived home

It was sunny yesterday, but when Jennifer arrived home, the temperature dropped by about 10 degrees, at least.

She'd had a bad day at v-ball camp, where she'd gotten placed (unfairly she thought) with the newbies who thought they were all that. Not quite the group she was in the mood for after entertaining the thought she might get on varsity this next year at last. (on this point, one of the coaches told her she'd really improved over the last year, and the trainer for the camp poo-hooed the idea that to be a successful v-ball player, you need to be tall. Really glad I shut my mouth and never voiced my earlier opinions to my 5-foot, 4-inch daughter at this point).

So, Thursday was a bit of a letdown after that. No praises and stuck with a bunch of snotty incoming freshmen. Then her b-friend called and wanted to talk, long and hard, about his birth mom coming back into his life (he thought she was dead from an OD long ago), and Jennifer's advice wasn't really what he wanted to hear.

Then I knocked over her drink, and told her "no, we can't get your foundation today."

So she harrumphed back to her room.

"What the hell was that?" Gary mumbled.

"A teenager having a bad day. Don't try to engage, I'll just take her to the gym and let her hit a punching bag for a while (which we did, and she did) so we don't have to be the standins"

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

No yoga tonight

At least for Jennifer. After all day at v-ball camp, she's just fallen asleep on the couch. Oh well, time to go it alone. To the gym for me.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Don't talk to me

Gary is a morning person. Jennifer, def. not. That became apparent this am as we all hauled out of bed at 6:30 am so Jennifer could make it to volleyball camp. Gary was happily chattering away, while Jennifer was is moody silence, as she collected her stuff, straightened her hair (don't ask) and looked for her purse (we later found that in the trunk).

After she finally drove the car off to camp - yes I gave it to her for a day - Gary remarked how grumpy she was.

Yes, she is. Just interact as little as possible before 11 am, and you'll do fine.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Me time

Yes, I know, I'm a bad mother.

But I sent gary off to man the bleachers at Jennifer's v-ball game, while I stayed home and cleaned, while watching all my guilty pleasures. Including drawing, which I plan to get to now.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Car bickering again

Even tho I told Jennifer not to fall in love with a car, she did. A 2006 Ford Focus for $9000. Gary says we don't have enough $$ (the car budget has about half that in it now); and is unwilling to take on another car payment.

Can't blame him since we already have 2. But Jennifer of course, doesn't see it that way. So they bickered all morning while I was on my Beach Naturalist duty, and I received a barrage of tearful calls as she called about the "no"  and then about the "no" to going to see it. He then relented to her tears, but if there wasn't going to be any dickering going on, she wasn't interested.

They continued to bicker, and more calls to me. She was grounded and couldn't go over for a sleepover tonight or watch the World Cup. He later relented on both.

They'd reached a sort of detente by the time I got home, but gads.  I was about ready to order them to corners.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Car shopping again

Gary and Jennifer are in a battle of wills over the car, but I think both are finally starting to see each other's point of view.

After getting our feet henna'd, (another post), we snuck off to Burien to check out a car she saw on a used car lot. Then we hopped across to a Ford dealership to check out Focuses. About five salesmen were lounging by the front door, which gave us pause.

"That's scary, do you want to skip this place," Jennifer asked.

But a guy named Matthew bounded forward, and started talking, almost nonstop about Focuses and how he just survived a rollover crash after he fell asleep at the wheel with his two kids in the back.


But actually, we didn't think he could make something like that up, and he did show us a nice Focus for $9000 with 41,000 miles and nice perks. So for the first time J could see the difference between a $9,000 car (which we could probably get down to $7,500) and a $4,000 car. So at least we're now all on the same page on that.

As for Matthew, he's looking for us in our price range. I like him. I just wouldn't want to drive with him.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Car shopping

We gobbled down our dinner at The Ram tonight and rushed down to the Honda used car lot before it closed.

Once the salesman found out our price range $4000 to $7000, he handed us off to his manager, which I think means we weren't worth his while. And so it continues. J has been prowling the internet for cars, as has Gary.

Jennifer's been finding cars she likes; and Gary has been nixing 'em, one right after another. Saab-too high maintenance. Prelude-it's a coup and will cost more to insure. Saturn-the one she found was too high mileage. Jennifer is getting annoyed, even if the points are valid.

So I finally pulled Gary aside and advised, to keep the peace in the house, at LEAST look at his daughter's finds. That way she'll at least feel like she has a say (which she does to a point, we're just not picking a car by how "cool" looking it is or its color).

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

So much for sleeping in

The entire idea of taking some time off when J was off was to spend time with her. Which I've done this week. But next week, just discovered her v-ball camp is from 8 to 5:30 pm. Well, so much for M-D time.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Watching scary movies

We're watching Legion right now, and as I look over, Jennifer is hiding her hands behind her pillow.

OK, this was my pick. Tomorrow night it's Where the Wild Things are, a little bit more gentle that a cross between Bus Stop, Terminator and Tremors.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Not with my daughter you don't

Jennifer was curled up next to me in tears, telling me about her boyfriend's friends (now x-friends) who were texting her nasty things, saying she was dominating all his time (not true) and it was her fault that he was now living in a group home for foster kids (um, not true again).

When she told me that one of them called her the c-word, that was the last straw. I brought in the big guns, i.e. gary. Said hubby promptly texted back all the perpetrators (who live in the same foster home Adam lived in) and blocked their # to text Jennifer. And he said if they tried it again, through another phone #, he'd call the cops.

I dont' think it dawns on these kids, that mess with Jennifer, you mess with 2 angry bears. That hasn't been their experience in their lives,but I think they know it's part of Jennifer's reality. Mess with her, you mess with all of us.

And adam has crossed said "friends" off the bff list.

Seriously, she called a fire engine on our fireworks?

That was the first thought that came to mind, when I saw 3 police cars, a fire engine, and 2 aide cars pull up to what I thought, at first was our house. Just hours earlier, Jennifer and I were setting off tamer fireworks for a 17-month old kid across the street.

Wouldn't you know the moment we shot off a parachute thingy, one part falls on the neighbor's roof who hates us. We were waiting for them to come storming out of the house (they had just pulled up as the chutist fell on their roof), but didn't happen.

However, it was just getting dark, and J and I were across the street playing with the 17-month old, and eating a chocolate concoction, when in fact, all the lights show up. As it turns out, it was a medical problem at our across the street neighbor's (never quite figured out what, or why 3 cop cars were there).

But we had to wait for them to leave to start shooting off our unsafe and insane fireworks. The fact there were so many vehicles with red lights didn't deter the neighbors down the street, who shot off sky rockets to their hearts content. We didn't have the nerve.

So we finally shot off the last firework about 11 pm, and then went in to watch the tivo'd Seattle version.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Time to buy fireworks!

This, ironically, has fallen to Jennifer and I. Gary has decided he doesn't quite care for them anymore. And mom's disapproval practically dripped from the phone.

She's not a fan of them either.

But she never was. I inherited my love of FW from my dad, who used to tell me stories of saving up all summer to buy a big box directly from the fireworks companies (in the 30s). Yeah, well, I never did that, but it's ingrained in my memory that we went out to the fireworks stands, and shot them off every 4th, and then saved some for the 1st of the next year of course.

So Jennifer and I went out to the Muckleshoot res. only to find about a gazillion people had beat us to it. The line up snaked up Highway 18 and onto 410 to the rez. Once there, it was like stepping in a combo of a war zone and a carnival, with hawkers at every stand.

"Geez," Jennifer said. "Some of those kids out out in the war zone (where the locals set off boxes of fireworks) are, what 5?"

Seems like. I was busy as the minute, trying to negotiate an intersection to turn into the firework plaza and make sure a paratrooper didn't land on the car. It didn't, it got caught up in a power line.

Once there, we did stick to our budget of $75, but it was a bit overwhelming to look at stand after stand, with mostly the same thing. We finally got our purchases, with a few freebies thrown in, and headed out.

The flaggers decided that the traffic wasn't working, so they routed us out the back, down what looked like an old logging trail that spit us out onto 410 again. Fortunately, the path worked, for those with faith that didn't bottom out, end up in the war zone (a spur of the road did snake off that direction) or get stuck in the mud or a pothole). And a caravan of cars started following me, so I just took a deep breath and plowed on.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Go home with a headache

From my daughter's volleyball team, and of course she wins the rest of her matches.

This always happens. We call it the mom curse. If I'm there, she loses, if not, she wins.

Especially true, it seemed, when she was on the basketball team. I used to just go outside and look in through the stadium doors. That way my bad karma wouldn't affect the team.