Summer Update…love

A lot has gone on so far this summer. Some wonderful marvelous things that I can speak about and some things that at this time that I can’t speak about.

It is hard when I express myself through the written word and I am stifled. I have written about things but not for this forum. Some of life happenings have to be held back to a hand written pages and put away into drawers for the time being.

Ron is five weeks out from knee replacement surgery and he has been released from physical therapy. He is their poster boy for recovery. I am proud of him. He did everything that he was supposed to do. He didn’t push to hard or do any silly things. He still has to wear his one compression sock. And boy is that sexy.

Rosie is growing like a weed. She is 4’11” (my height) and 96 lbs. She is constantly hungry and constantly chattering. She plays with her dolls, plays in the dirt, tries to build teepees and is friends with everyone in our cul de sac of five houses. Then she will turn around and swipe my makeup and want to wear a dress and heels. She is 13 in body but 10 in mind. She has a hard time keeping up with herself.

Brandon, well Brandon…he is 16. Need I say more.

And me. Well…I am back to working out but I have been prohibited from Crossfit. I loved Crossfit but unfortunately my joints and heart did not. When Ron went in for his surgery, I had labs and xray done on my hips. It was found that I have degenerative arthritis. Thanks mom and dad for the sucky genetics.

The doctor said low impact exercises only. So no Crossfit. We did try a cortisone shot in the hip. It did not seem to work. So we will re-evaluate the options.

With that Ron and I joined Planet Fitness. I want to lose 30 more lbs and build tone and strength. Ron is only going for 20 and to build strength in his leg. With the membership we can take one guest. So we can take our constant shadow with us. It will be good for Rose to start a fitness habit and hopefully this will become a lifestyle.

The Church is going well. We have had five people join since March and three baptisms. There is a good energy and a feeling of prayerful hope. The cry has become We can do all things through Christ who strengthens us.

There are at times, like in life, some personality struggles. But I try to handle it with prayer, listening, and understanding that we all come from different places. At times my patience is not always the there and then I become frustrated with my own feelings and inadequacy. I saw a post today that said that how our teenage angst and insecurity can return even years out of our teens. How true.

Camp Cook & Play has been a blast with 12 kids signing up. Now all 12 have not been there at the same time but we had at the most 8 and the least 5. For our first year I have been quite happy. Not all the kids have come from the church. “Behold we did a new thing” or a revised thing from the past. Rose has loved it and even made us hashbrowns a few nights ago.

This past week was a bittersweet moment in ministry. When someone in your congregation goes on hospice. You know when they are a person of faith they are going home, to their heavenly home. Watching a wife of 60 years say goodbye is hard, she doesn’t want him to hurt but she doesn’t wantto let go either. I sat with them a few nights. He kept his humor when he was alert. When he became less and less alert he still remembered how to pucker up and kiss. This man has an amazing family. I lift them up in prayer.

It makes you realize how deeply you need to show love to those that are around you. Life can be short. You need to be right with Jesus and surrender to him and you need to hold tight to your loved ones.

Don’t let grudges be held, let forgiveness be given and granted. Live each day like the people you are helping are Jesus. Love love love.

Life is not perfect, life is a roller coaster. Life is turbulent but it sure is a lot easier with love and Jesus.


His Surgery and My Weakness

My beloved and I have been together in some form for 27 years; college classmates in business College, friends, co-workers, parents, lovers, confidantes and spouses for nearly 25 of those years.

We have been amazing together. Mostly due to our faith in God and the belief in our covenant with each other and our Abba. Divorce was never an option although admittedly there have been mistakes made and times we were not terribly fond of one another.

Ron took a lot of the weight and responsibility of the family when I had my strokes. Mostly out of sheer necessity. I couldn’t do the bills because numbers didn’t make sense, they were scrambled. Medications were hard to remember what and when to take. In the kitchen, I couldn’t hold things to cut or slice.

At times, I was a comedy of errors and still can be on my bad days. Moving into a split level home in Idaho had its own challenges. So, Ron, began doing the trek to the bottom level to wash and dry and I became the folder. Then he would trek them to the upper level to be put away.

Tomorrow, he has knee replacement surgery. This is exciting as his knee is bone on bone and this will give him some pain free future opportunities. In fact, a thrift shop special was purchased today of a bike to ride as part of his rehab. I am not worried about the Surgery, they know what they are doing.

My concerns are twofold; firstly that he will mind during his recovery and do as told. Secondly, that I can do this. That I can take care of him, the kids, the house, the job and do a decent job. Especially the taking care of Ron. I have relied on him so much and for so long that this all feels overwhelming.

He has been the rock for us and done it all and I feel scared that I am going to have things fall through the cracks. I feel a bit alone.

I have two others going through surgery in the church family that I need to be Pastor Dawn for, we are kicking off a brand new summer program next week for the church and three of the key players can’t be there the first week…breathe breathe breathe.

And my Rock, the one who steadies me will do it in a different way. Away from me. Not by my side. If you don’t know me, I sound incredibly whiney and weak. I am strong and I will do all that I need to do and do it as well as I can. Right now though I am feeling unsteady and the word again overwhelmed.

Right now, I just feel adrift and not sure how I will do this all. Part of me is a bit upset that I have leaned that heavily on some dude yet I know I had no choice. So now I take some deep deep breaths. Remember to inhale and to exhale. If I need to cry, hide in the bathroom and do it. I have my Abba and I will lean on him and I will lean hard. And most importantly I will keep breathing.

Another Year Older

At this moment I am 53 years old and one day. I don’t feel any different than I did yesterday and I probably won’t feel any different than I will tomorrow. My husband teases me I’m celebrating the anniversary of my 39th anniversary. In reality, our lives have changed greatly in the past year. Things aren’t the same as they were last year.

We have found new diagnosis with the children after several weeks of new testing.  We have found new challenges with the children. We have found life-changing things with the children. We have found out things that will effect their future and things that will affect our future.

The Princess has been diagnosed with a long term developmental disability, where she will have to probably live with us for the rest of her life. She is excited about it and plans on moving her husband and children in with us. As of now she doesn’t understand the limitations of her life. Let me rephrase that, the potential limitations, that there could be in her future. It scares us for her. It scares us that we will not be around for her forever and then we have to look at her future.  What this future will be without Mom and Dad around.

It is hard to believe that she has become a teenager and she has begun to develop a teenager’s body but her mind still wants to play with her doll and horses. Princess can talk non stop to no one but herself and have a grand time of it. She can also turn into a raging hormonal mess of tears and yelling for no apparent reason.

The Teen, oh the Teen, he has become problematic. Explosive temper, stubborn, mouthy, lazy, and failing school. We have had trouble with the law, trouble with girls and he and Dad butt head on days ending with “y”.

We have redone his med regime, put him into group counseling, met with the school for an IEP for next year. We have tried to engage him more with the family.

Most of all we pray. We love them but we know love doesn’t fix the problems or genetics that their bio parents inflicted upon them. So we pray some more. We turn to the experts who have worked with PTSD, RAD, ODD, bi-polar disorder and all the other alphabet soup. And we pray.

Some nights we cry. Some nights we laugh because it’s too hard to cry. Some nights we feel guilty because we just want a break and to get away by ourselves and that never seems to happens.

So here we are 53 and 1 day and 65 years old. Our children range from 43 to 13, our grandchildren from 21 to 7. We aren’t content and we aren’t discontent. We work hard each day. Our house is not the cleanest as we often are tired after work or our energies go back into the Princess and Teen.

So in our chaos you will hear laughter, yelling, Princess talking non stop to no one, Teen’s yucky music, cacophony of barking dogs and know that this crazy is our normal. Our normal is not a normal meant for everyone.

God blessed us with these two children so now we have to live up to God’s expectations for us. So we pray a whole lot. If you get a chance, send some prayers our way too.









Too Quiet

That has been me and the blog, A lot has happened.

Broken windows, chewed books, tantrums, surgeries, visits from family, a wedding, the return of a world traveler and through this I have been silent. We had Thanksgiving and decorated the church and the kids decorated the house, Ron’s heater went out in his car and his tire went flat. The Princess got A’s and B’s first trimester and well the Teen did not. And still I have been quiet.

There have been funny Gizmo stories and stories of three dogs who pretend not to like each other cuddling together until a two legged family member walks in the room. Ralph’s slowing down and at 15 shows his age then he will have bursts of energy to remind us of his uniqueness. Yet, I still haven’t wrote.

I have had many joys at the church and some sorrows. The sorrows try to drown out the happiness and make you forget. Satan is a sly creature. Are we growing? Yes, by some people’s measurements. Is everyone happy? Heck, NO. Will I make everyone happy? Only in my dream world. Even in any church I know of, they wouldn’t be happy if Jesus was running the show. Still, I haven’t spoke.

I shared, in a rather, public forum that I felt broken. I wasn’t even sure quite what I meant other than my words had been silenced. I couldn’t fully convey my thoughts, feelings and emotions. I was blank. I still carry some of that. Whatever “that” is. I feel both a heaviness and emptiness.

I am waking up, going through the motions of my days. This week was heavier due to the pain of physically trying to do the splits on the ice. I score myself an eight, seeing I never could do them before. Plus the anniversary of my mom’s death seemed to sneak up and slap me.

Yes, I am praying. Yes, I have spoken to my Dr. but that answer is always more drugs. I am already a mini pharmacy. I even asked if those were the issue. But those are needed for me to live.

So I have broken my silence and really have not said much at all. Sometimes maybe it is better to be too quiet.

Thanksgiving of a Dysfunctional Family

I grew up in what is now called a blended family. Back then it did not have that fancy title. We were the step kids or her brats. Holidays were not exciting times. They were fraught with yelling, hitting, cussing and drinking and that was just preparing the food.

Thanksgiving was fancy plates and cloth napkins. Appetizer tray with veggies. Smoke filled room and noise. Often times we would never finish the meal as someone would have to leave on a “call” for the funeral home. 

If we were at my grandparents home, the smells were different. Charlie perfume wafting in the kitchen admist the smell of Thanksgiving ham. Grandpa hated turkey. But for some reason Grandma made oyster stuffing. At their house, I didn’t have to sit by my step dad. So there I was away from the back hand side. 

In fact there we had the kids table, where my brothers and I sat thinking we were special. But yet somehow desiring and wanting to be at the big people table. Grandma even made our little card table elegant.

After dinner the adults would play cards and cuss and smoke and drink some more. Usually someone would say something and we would leave with my parents in a a huff. We three kids would hunker down in the back seat. Knowing the slightest wrong word could result in a beating. Usually I said the wrong word.

If it was at our house; it would be walking on eggshells before, during and after. I would sit at the back hand side of my step dad and cringe every time his hand moved, not knowing when I might end up on the floor for doing something wrong. My brothers said when I moved out, my chair remained empty. If my step dad’s older brother was there it usually meant a fist fight.

I always hoped for a wonderful huge peaceful laughing family Thanksgiving. We had a few Thanksgiving with my family as an adult where it was a bit better but someone would say something and the fight would be on and someone would leave angry or hurt. 

With my own family, I tended to go to the opposite spectrum. Super low key. Probably too afraid to make a fuss.  I think part of me is still that little girl wanting that ideal Thanksgiving. I have been to a few homes where I have seen that and it has left me in awe and even envious.

Tomorrow it is just the four of us. By popular vote, we are going to have hammocks and beans. We are going to do some house projects and chill out. On Saturday; our daughter, son in law and grandson will be here. I will cook a pared down turkey dinner.  

I suppose my traditional Thanksgiving days are still screwy. Maybe I don’t need that one day to elevate it to something more. Really isn’t just another day like any other day. It has historical significance. But honestly aren’t we called be thankful all the time. Not just one day a year.

Today, I was pretty sad about a situation. I came home and shut myself away and had a good cry. Then I prayed. I am still a bit sad but I realize that I can’t change what is going on…it is what it is.

What I can do, is find different ways to find thanks. Right now, I haven’t found a lot but when given clarity and distance, I will. I know already that I am more blessed than many many people. I have my faith, a home, a job, my husband, my children…that is more than many.

I couldn’t control those adults that caused harm when I was a child but I can pray that i have done a better job with my older kids and will do a good job with the youngest two.

Sunday at church, I am giving everyone 5 kernels of corn based on an old story that the first year the Pilgrims were here they each were only given 5 kernels of corn. I am giving those with the thought of 5 things or areas of thanksgiving we have.

What are five areas in which you are thankful?

Heavy Hearted with a Throbbing Headache aka the State of the World…A Rant

My head is throbbing and my heart is heavy. I can’t turn on the news, look at social media, read a newspaper or watch a sporting event without there being hate, disaster or politics. I am basically going to go on a free range rant.

The world is a literal mess. There seems to be very little good news. There are earthquakes, hurricanes and flooding, There are wars and rumors of wars. There is anger over every aspect of life. There is no equality because we all have stopped trying to communicate. We have leaders of the world name calling like adolescents. But instead of rocks they have nuclear weapons to toss about.

There are shootings in churches and schools. Parents killing children. Children killing parents. People beating people with baseball bats. Everyday people killing for no apparent reason. “He was a nice man, I never thought he could do that.” Well folks he did.

Teachers having sex with students. What the heck? That just creeps me out. I guess I always thought my teachers were old. They were like 30. When did teachers start thinking that is was a feasible idea? When did student think it was ok?

How many little ones are going to left in hot cars before parents realize that they can’t go to the bar, go to the mall, or go to work? By now hasn’t it gotten across to all of you, the car gets hot. It cooks those little ones and usually kills them or causes permanent damage. Find a babysitter or don’t go. 

Kids would rather sit next to each other and talk on their phones than talk face to face. Social media has become both a modern day miracle in connecting us across miles but also has become a detriment in interacting in real time. My kids have to be reminded of what eye contact is and that their eyes can move above their laps. 

I am still uncomfortable with our President having a Twitter account. Especially since there seems to be no one monitoring those late night, early morning tweets that he makes. Everyone knows you don’t tweet when you are tired, mad, or just broke up with someone.

I can’t wrap my head around suicide terrorist or any type of terrorism. And if you are a suicide terrorist and live are you fired from your job? The idea of sneak attacks and hurting innocent people goes against my grain. It seems cowardly. If you are going to do it, stay there and be caught, if you are so proud of your work.

I can live without sports but I watch usually to spend time with my spouse. I don’t like sports and politics mixing. But I believe in our right of free speech. I don’t quite get the whole kneel, not kneel thing. I know at one time the team’s didn’t even come out until after the National Anthem. Do I give respect to the flag–yes I do. Does it bother me they are kneeling? I am not sure, I would be more upset if they turned their backs. I am still sorting this one out in my head. So don’t pounce on me.

What does hack me is their salaries and the salaries of these actors. We have children starving. Homeless. Puerto Rico without power. But these above named athletes and actors are making millions. Millions. They buy mansions, bling, cars, clothes and stuff. Poor folk or middle class struggle. Some some they came from there but they have long forgotten.

I keep telling my congregation that we do not know the time or place when Jesus will come again. But at times I even have to wonder just got a tad of a moment if some of this is end times.  Some part of me wishes it were because we are in such a sad state. 

We need some good news. I am tired of my heart being heavy and things in the world not making sense. I am tired of reading of something stupid, sad, heartbreaking, angering or hurtful every day. Part of me wants to stop reading and seeing but I was not made to be a mushroom and hide in the dark. 

I continue to pray. And I will continue to pray. That is the one thing that I can do in this messy world that I call home.

A Day of Discombulation

Have you ever had those days when you wake up and nothing seems to go right? Today was one of those days. The dogs wouldn’t mind this morning. The kids wouldn’t mind this morning. Teenager decided to see how far he could push me. He tried to do it in a cute manner, which only preceded to irritate me more.

So I decided to go outside to get away from the child. So of course he follow me outside. I was so looking forward to going to work this morning. I had a new toy to put together. A generous donation have come come in a form of an all-in-one computer. I was looking forward to putting this all together. But as you know the best laid plans of mice and men never seem to work out.

I had several interesting phone calls today. Calls about if I handled demon possession, calls referring referring people in the right direction for the right topics that I am not equipped to discuss, poignant calls of prayer requests for people with families in Texas affected by Harvey and then my bicycle man. I will call my bicycle man Mister B.

Mister B showed up on Sunday needing help during service. Myself and a few Elders worked with Mister B for a few hours and got him set up to travel to Seattle. I was pretty sure he was on his way. When to my surprise he graced my doors today. He had found some other difficulties.

My Secretary asked me if me, “Is it ok if I leave now? Do you feel safe?”

What am I suppose to say right in front of the person. But he answered for me, “yeah, I’m not going to kill her or anything.”

Warmed my heart and apparently made Secretary feel secure because she went home.

So we worked on the current issues. And those took another two and a half hours to work out. I think we got everything straightened out this time. I pray so.

Mister B is a man of opinion and varied stories. He never cussed. But he did use words of hate in describing my brothers and sisters of humanity that I corrected him on and then wondered later how brave or crazy I was to do that. I didn’t feel threatened but the same time I never wanted to go the bathroom while he was there. So after two and a half hours I must say my bladder was happier when he left the building.

Mister B now is either on his way to Seattle or Florida. It’ll be interesting to see where he ends up. I will keep him in my prayers as I know there are some demons nipping at his heels.

Mentally that was a huge strain. So I was looking forward to coming home to my sweet darling obedient children. Ok that was a fantasy. None of the chores had been done.

The Teen said he had done them but if he had I was 5 ‘5″ and 101 lbs. He didn’t know where his sister was. He was supposed to be watching here. And he started picking up on his behaviour where he had left off that morning.

Do you know how glad I was to be at home?

I went to call the Princess in, she came in ranting about never being able to play with her friends again. I decide I am going to sit on the front porch. Her friends from across the street come over and return the knife she had taken over to play show them. Yes, my friends, a knife. One of my paring knives.

My respite on the front porch was over. I went in and bellowed her name and the word knife. She knew she was in deep doo. The Teen was ecstatic someone else took him out of the lime light. She looked at me. She looked at the knife I was holding. She made a run for the door.

As she hit the bottom of the steps she screams, “your not my mother! She is going to kill me, stop her she will kill me!!”

And she takes off. The neighbors are outside. The kids chase after her. The adults watch . I hobble along. She hits the end of the cul-de-sac and dives under the pine tree into the open field. The kids drop their bikes and give chase. I still hobble along and climb under the pine tree. The kids get across the field. They come back to me to say they can’t catch her. They want to go back and get their bikes. I tell them they can do that if it’s okay with their grandparents and please bring my phone. So I go hobbling along through the field. Finally turning onto the sidewalk.

The Princess has now turned and is walking back toward me. She is quite a bit away.Her arms are open wide and she is sobbing. She gets close to me and asked me for a hug. I tell her right now I can’t hug her because I’m very upset but I love her very much. By now the calvary has arrived. The kids if returned with the bikes. The hubby has shown up with the car and the Teen has shown up with my phone.

I send everyone back with instructions for the Princess to apologize to the neighbors. I ride back in the car with Ron and then I go speak to the grandparents and apologize for her disruption and thank them for letting their grandchildren help. I explained to to them about the special needs our children have and explain that I would not kill my child nor do I want to in the literal sense.  In the meantime the Teen is now instigating and Princess is in full meltdown mode. I excuse myself.

I separate them and tell Princess to take a Calgon moment. It seems now every nerve I have is on the surface and I am surly. Not even a Snickers bar would fix it. Poor Hubby gets his head snapped off a few times. He has earned a few more saintly points tonight.

At 8 p.m. I send Princess and me to bed. Her to sleep and me to hide. My mind is whirling and I need to defrag it. Desperately need to. Tomorrow is the first day of school so maybe that is why they were so squirrelly. I am not sure what it was but it wasn’t pretty.

Tomorrow; I will send my youngest two to school, I will have my devotional time. I will download programs on my new generously donated toy, I will ready the bulletin info, I will cook sloppy Joes for 60 folks with the help of an amazing crew,  I will I pray and I will find a pinch of sanity somewhere.

You know you have to laugh, crying just makes you look ugly.





Looking Back but Still Moving Forward

Four years ago today, I had my second stroke in eight days. I was blessed that I maintained my cognizant thought and most of my speech. But in those early days, I didn’t embrace what I had as so much what I didn’t have. It was also one year ago that I read the letter to my Missouri congregations tendering my resignation.

Reading Deuteronomy 5 we see the 10 Commandments handed down to the people of Israel. This was their go forward moment. They could look back on their enslavement but look ahead. They had new rules and a new outlook. Change was in their future and some of them didn’t like that. They probably originated the often heard phrase, “We have never done it that way before.”

I have had those life changing moments that are a part of my history, part of my makeup. When I went into foster care, my marriages, my divorce, the births and the adoption of my children, deaths of loved ones, career changes, moves and illness. Each of those events brought a new normal to my life. A new time to become more or at times less.

When I had the strokes, I lost part of me. Not just physically but emotionally also. I felt wired differently. My thought process and memory were less than I’d want it to be. I couldn’t concentrate as I used to. There was no way in he’ll I could even multi task. I lost confidence in myself. In a sense, I became less in my mind. I felt I was letting folks down. My thoughts would not process all the way through from point to point.

My two churches supported me through but they began to take care of me and I wasn’t taking good care of them. They suffered for three years. Maybe suffer is a harsh word but they did not get a pastor running at 100% capability. It was hard to have two churches and two churches so vastly different. I loved both congregations and they each were blessed with talented and loving folk. Choosing to leave was hard but I think a benefit to them. 

I had interviewed at my present church but had not been called at all to serve them. I resigned based upon my faith in God and knowing I was hurting the congregations more than helping them. Was I trying my best to serve them? Yes. Was I giving them a 100%? No. They each deserved better.

Now please understand, I am not saying these congregations were perfect. They were churches made of people…and in that we all have our quirks and twitches. But they deserved more of someone who had more to give them. I miss the people to this day. I will probably continue to do so for a lifetime.

I miss fish fry’s, the Lord’s Acre Sale, Hope for the Holidays, the Back to School Fair, Ice Cream Socials, Spaghetti Fundraisers, Champ Clark Days, seeing the Amish and going to the Muny. I miss my ministerial alliance guys and Every Child Every Day and the Summer Lunch program. I know these will all continue without me but I hold those times closely in my memory banks.

I look back at all of this and remember it and build upon it. I use it as reminders of what I have done well and what could have done better. I use that now. I take care of one church now. One single small church.

We are rebuilding, not the building literally. But the hearts and hopes of the congregation. “Behold, He makes all things new”. Being new isn’t always easy. It can be messy and ugly but given time it can shine.

Four years ago, I had no choice but become something new, something different. Do I always like the new? Depends on the day.  I miss walking without a funky gate and not being able to wear high heels. I miss having control of my hand and fingers and having someone think I am giving them The Middle Finger. (It has happened in church.) I miss having the energy I use to have and the ability to multi task.

What I have learned is tenacity. Not to give up, to push through. To not always look at myself for what I can’t do but what I can do and have done. I learned that I have a deeper layer inside of me. That I am more than what my body says I am.

Time changes each and everyday. I look back so I can look forward and be more of what I need to be and what God wants me to be. I hope and pray when my time comes, I will stand before God and He will look at me and say, “Dawn, you weren’t perfect, you are flawed. I love you for those imperfections, those scars. I am proud of you. Well done, my good and faithful servant, well done.”

Stroke Survivor

Four years ago today, I had my first stroke. It was unrealized when I woke up that morning what the day would have in store for me. How my life and my families life would be changed.

It was a typical morning with the chaos of 5 children in the house. Four kiddos to get out the door for school and one who was suspended and got to hang out with us. I woke up with an extreme headache and it continued to progress.

It was a scary day full of hopelessness and fear. It was a day where I couldn’t formulate thoughts. It was a day where communication was difficult. I knew what I wanted to say and do with my body but it was not possible.

Now, four years later, I have a new normal. I am not the high heeled wearing gal. I am me. A bit more confident, much more aware of my body and it’s needs and what it is telling. I still don’t always listen but I am learning.

To this day, I am taking strides in my recovery. Still being a pro active survivor. It is easy to be the victim and admittedly, I at times wear that badge but it is harder to be a survivor.

If You Paint Your Name on the Tree, We Know it Was You

Having special needs children is a challenge. Having special needs children who have been foster care and adopted is another challenge. Having that as a combination can be quite interested at times. We often times have to find the patients that we don’t truly have inability to bite your tongue. Sometimes it is a day of perfection and sometimes the day of disasters. There are meltdowns. And please note I said meltdowns not tantrums. There is a difference.

We call our younger two, the alphabet kids, because of all their diagnosis’. There is ADHD, PTSD, RAD, ODD, OCD and toss that in with degrees of autism, plus the possibility of bi polarism, you have a hell of a cocktail. You have meds, counselors, caseworkers, Dr of Psychiatry and just a good ole pediatric doctor.

I love these two children with all my heart but I have to admit these our my two hardest. They still carry battle scars from their bio parents. In my sons case not understanding why he had to move foster homes, 11 times and why no one wanted him. When you hear him ask, why?, at the age of 15 it tears your heart and want to rave at the system and some foster parents. 

The Princess and the Teen both have food issues, they lie easily and often. They each have their own pecularities and individual issues. Some that are foreign to me but vividly real to them. Which can cause social issues and morality problems. Please understand they aren’t horrible children possessed by Satan. Even though at times we wonder. They are children with problems.

The Teen is belligerent and obnoxious at times but a lot of teen boys are that. He can be lazy until he wants something. The something this week is a new video game. When Dad is home he relatively obeys him. But when he isn’t this child baits me into anger…and he is good at it.  He has lost his phone and laptop due to his behaviour.

But tonight the star of this story is the Princess, who we are rethinking of nicknaming her Bandit, Raccoon or Sneaky Pete. She sees something shiny and she wants. She sees something she wants and she takes. After the taking comes the hiding. She has hidden a variety of things;food, makeup, art supplies, scisdors, forks, spoons, glue, tools, art paint, markers, highlighters, flashlights, batteries and the list goes on.

She is a cat burglar, you never see her take the things. We have to periodically (every third day) check her room and her normal hiding spots and the abnormal ones. She has slit her pillow and hid things inside and even her mattress. (Where did she learn this? Has she been watching too many prison documentaries.) 

As you hold the item that you found in her room, she looks at you innocently and says, “Boy, how did that get there?”

My mind works instantly with sarcasm but I so often force myself to hold back and not say what my mind is thinking. And of course she doesn’t know when she took, why she took it or what she was going to use it on or do with it.

Today, I took her with me to a hair appointment. I have been down six days with something but I couldn’t cancel the appointment again. I take Princess with me. She is being excellent as we go through the process of color, pedicure, waxing and haircut. She even tried on an outfit that I purchased for her. I rather had too, she put it on and left it on when I was processing. After 15 minutes, I thought it would be tacky to return the outfit.

In the middle of my waxing (face only, shame on you), my phone blows up. The Teen is messaging me, actually he is snitching me. My dear darling girl had got a hold of the yellow spray paint for the last two chairs. I asked if he was sure it was, he said yes.

I then contact the hubby. Yes it was her. How could he tell? She sprayed her name on a tree. Ummm, yep, that would be a dead give away. She also painted her play house and part of the neighbors white fence. Dad then checked inside the playhouse.

Davy Jone’s might have been jealous of all the Treasures in there. She had taken her stuffed animals out, a sleeping bag, blankets..those are normal things. Then there were a rake, shovel and hoe. There was lawn fertilizer, brake fluid, oil for lawnmower, power steering fluid and of course the missing can of yellow spray paint.

How did she get all those things without us knowing? We watch her closely, we really do. If you have read earlier blogs, you know she can wander so we watch and check on her often. We have no clue how or when she could have done it. We have the shed and play house in line of site of the kitchen. Admittedly, we don’t stand and stare at her all the time.

She showed me today her army sneak crawl (The was before the discovery). Is that it? We didn’t find hunting camouflage in the play house, so I don’t know. Dad did do a room check and did find his multi tool under her mattress. I don’t even want to know. Hopefully She wasn’t going to use it as a shiv.

She doesn’t understand the severity of what she has done and not just this incidence but the overall stealing and lies. At this time; she has no screen time, she has to go apologize to the neighbor (what a great way to meet your neighbors), and her play house is going away. She will be having extra chores to compensate for the loss. We will be padlocking the shed.

Someday we will laugh at this. That is what I keep telling myself. Sometimes I wish I could see what she is thinking and her thought process. But then I think I am better off not going down that rabbit hole.

My niece told me today that  we never have a dull moment. I laughed. Then I asked the Princess what the marks on her arm were. My niece wondered too.

Princess answered, “oh that is where I suck my arm when I am bored and watching tv.”

Yes just another day in paradise. No dull moments here.