auntbijou: (Default)
So... the Impossible Son is now a freshman in high school.

*pause for motherly whimpering*

In our small town, the freshman campus is separate from the high school. It's also on the other side of town from where we live. Not a big deal, because this is a small town. I am lucky, though, that his first period class, athletics, is at the high school, and so is his last class of the day, because this means he can walk to school in the morning and walk home in the afternoon, since the high school is just down the street from us. Which means... no more sitting in long slow lines of cars to drop off/pick up my student, HUZZAH!!!!

*dance of joy, dance of joy*

Since Impossible is also on the high school cross country team, this also means that every other morning, he has to be at the high school at 6:30 a.m. for running practice. The Husbandly One drops him off on his way to work, and if I wait long enough, I can go out on the back deck and see the whole team go running by. They get back to the school in time for the team to shower and get ready for their first period class. Which, for my son, is athletics, as I mentioned earlier.

The next thing I need to mention is that my son, at 14, is the tallest person in our house. He is all long arms and legs, and the basketball coach pretty much started drooling the moment the Impossible Son loped into the gym. So... the Impossible Son spends first period playing basketball pretty much nonstop. All. Period. Long.

All freshman who have their first and last periods at the high school are required to ride a bus to go back and forth. This bus leaves at a very specific time, and if a student isn't there at that time... too bad, so sad. There is only ONE bus for this. I totally get that.

However, what this means for athletic students is... depending on the coach, there is NO TIME FOR A SHOWER.

This... is NOT a good thing.

So, Tuesday morning of the second week of school, I was sitting and staring at the story I'm presently working on and wondering if I needed to do little tweaking of my outline when the Dropkick Murphys start screaming, "I'm a sailor peg, and I lost my leg! Climbing up the topsails, I lost my leeeeegggg!!"

It's my phone, and I think, "I turned in the athletic forms, he has all his school supplies, omg, what has he done now?"

"Hey, Mom."

I frown at look at the clock, thinking, did he miss the bus?

"I need to come home and take a shower."

Blink. Blink.

"Wait a minute, didn't you take a shower after class?"

"There was no time," he said a little sheepishly. "I mean, I barely have time after practice to throw on my clothes! I have to get out to the bus as fast as I can, no time for a shower!"

Okay, I know that's true, it was true when my daughter was a freshman, and will probably be true until the construction at the high school is finished.

"Impossible, you'll just have to suffer through it," I begin, knowing the school won't just let him come home. Then I realize, the ringtone was the Dropkick Murphys, not the Legend of Zelda. He was calling from the school office, not his own phone.

"Mom, everyone in my class says I reek! I stink, Mom, even the teacher says so! I need a shower!" he insisted.

It doesn't normally take me this long to catch on. "Wait a minute, are you just calling me on your own, or did the teacher send you to the office to actually go home and take a shower?"

"Yes, Mom, my teacher insisted!"

"Okay, I'll be there in a few minutes."

I was sort of stunned, but, having been around the Impossible Son when he was sweaty, I could sort of see it. Thing is, he didn't have that much of a body odor problem, really. It was mostly his feet that would get us during soccer season, where we would beg him to keep his shoes on until we were out of the car. But that's soccer pong, and just means keeping his gear clean. So, I got in the car and drove over to the freshman campus to sign him out.

The freshman campus was built in 1923 and has all the problems you'd associate with a building that old. It's small (the current class of freshmen are practically bursting out of the seams), it smells, and it's hard to air condition. In fact, only the classrooms and offices are air conditioned, while the halls are NOT. It's like walking into a sauna when you enter the building, and you want to hold your breath until you get into the office, where it's nice and cool. At least for a few minutes. Air conditioning at the freshman campus really means not as hot as the hall way.

So, I wade through the sauna to the relative comfort of the office to sign my son out. He arrives and keeps a careful distance from me, and when we get outside, immediately moves downwind of me.

"It's bad, isn't it?" he asks, eying me as we walk to the car.

"Not really." I take a careful sniff, but I don't smell much because... he's downwind.

"Just wait," he says ominously.

Amused, I unlock the car, we get in, I pull the window shade off the dash, start the car and get the AC going... and immediately my eyes start watering, my gag reflex leaps up and punches me in the throat, and my nose and lungs start rebelling and trying to escape.

"Oh... my... God..." I gag, turning to stare at my son in horror. "Did you roll in something dead??"

He's grinning at me. "I know, right?" The Impossible Son's cheeks are red with embarrassment, but there's an odd sort of pride in his eyes, too. "It's awful, isn't it? I told you! You didn't believe me!"

Frantically opening all the windows in my car, including the sun roof, with the AC going full blast in the faint hope of getting the... the... STANK out of my car, eyes watering and leaning away from my child, all I can say is, "Holy crap... how the fuck did this happen??"

"Mom," the Impossible Son says as leans helpfully away from me, "we ran four miles this morning in cross country, and then I had to go straight to basketball practice! No time for a shower! And then we barely have time to dress before we have to catch the bus! We all reek!"

I think all my nose hair was gone by the time we got home. My eyes are watering just remembering this. It was horrible. Like... old cheddar cheese that's been sitting in a bowl of water in direct sunlight for three days, and moldy soccer socks in a hot car, with a little muddy dog and three weeks unchanged cat litter box. During a hundred degree summer. With... sweat.

*is still horrified*

I never thought I'd ever say that about one of my children, but omg, he reeked. It made soccer pong look... pleasant.

So, after he'd decontaminated and changed clothes, he told me the story.

He was in his second period biology class, and the teacher had broken them up into smaller groups to work on their assignment. First, the kids in his group had started moving away from him with, "God, Impossible, WTF?" and "Dude, did you even take a shower??" Then some of the groups that were close to them started complaining and became vocal about insisting he go home to take a shower. The teacher, noticing the increasingly vocal protests, called him over to find out what was going on. At this point, Mr. Impossible had had enough. "Miss Biology Teacher, I really need to go home and take a shower," he said apologetically.

She said humorously, "So you're a little sweaty, you're fine, stop messing around and get back to work."

"No, I really, really stink, that's why they're all complaining," he insisted.

At that moment, the AC came on, and the vent was apparently behind him and blew air directly toward her. He said she was opening her mouth to probably tell him to go back to his table when his personal cloud of stench was blown into her face.

She froze. Her eyes went wide and her nostrils flared. Her eyes bulged as she stared up at him with horror, then they reddened and started to water. Her nose looked like it was trying to pinch itself shut. Her hands gripped the desk so hard, her knuckles went white. And her mouth snapped shut.

He said, "I seriously started to worry about her, because it was like... she stopped breathing!"

Of course, she stopped breathing! She was trying not to smell him.

After a moment, she started frantically pointing at the door. "You," she said, scooting hastily away from him after thrusting a hall pass at him. "You! Home! Now! SHOWER!!!"

"Well," I said, leaning toward him, "you smell much better now."

"I should," he said as we got in the car to go back to the freshman campus. "I used almost half my body wash cleaning myself off! Do they make industrial strength body wash?"

"No, and before you ask, Axe Body spray is not shower in a can," I said firmly. "If you had used it you would not have smelled better. You would still have the Stench, it just would have been... the Stench WITH Axe Body spray. And that would have been much worse."

"How do you know?" he asked as we pulled up to the school and I parked.

"Because the pot smokers at my high school used to try to disguise the smell of what they'd been doing before school started with this mint breath spray called Binaca. And it never worked." I grinned at him. "They never understood why they kept getting caught, but you know, it was because instead of smelling like pot smokers, they now smelled like Fresh MINTY Pot Smokers™!"

He laughed. "I'll pass that on!"

"Good. Because we're all kind of tired of smelling sweaty teen pong with Axe Body spray!"

You know, I'm still working on getting the smell out of my car!
auntbijou: made by <lj comm=lvlwings_icons> (Delicious Hot Schmoes!)
The Impertinent Daughter is a senior and will be graduating this year. That's twelve years worth of excuse notes that I've written for her alone (because I home-schooled her for kindergarten), and I am so done with this school district. Seriously.

In fact, you could say I've gotten rather jaded, and after last year's experiences of having to go toe-to-toe with administration just to get the Impossible Son moved to a class where he wasn't being bullied by his teacher, and then this year, well... I finally just... let go and gave them the full benefit of my biting sarcasm and dry wit when I had to write excuse notes. Or when I have to check the kids out of school.

Once, when I had to pull out the Impertinent Daughter to go with us to one of the Impossible Son's orthodontic appointments, I wrote in the check out slot, "orthodontic torture" for the reason. When she started her period and was cramping so badly she couldn't stand up straight, I wrote, "uterine vengeance and gore."

Why not?

So one morning, when I was sitting there, trying to cudgel my not really awake brain into composing yet another bland and professional excuse note, I just... gave in to my inner demons and wrote this:

"Please excuse the Impertinent Daughter's absences on Monday, February 3rd, and Tuesday, February 4th. We shall blame her grandfather for this one, because he was the one who decided to pass down the completely unnecessary and totally un-fun Migraine Gene. He could have passed down any gene but this one. Did he give her his green eyes? No. Did he give her the ability to imitate any bird call she hears? No. He gave her migraines.

We have both decided this is totally unfair and wish to complain to the management. Management seems to be ignoring us at the moment, and so, she’s had a migraine the last two days, and while she isn’t really over it, she’s attempting school today anyway."

I figured, what the hell? What are they going to do, yell at me? I'll just smile evilly and ask them what precisely is wrong with the excuse note? It gives the salient facts in an entertaining and light-hearted manner, and if they don't agree, too bad. Besides, I'm working on the supposition that these things are just as boring for them to read as they are for me to write. Why not entertain everyone? I figure it's a win all the way around. I get to practice my creative writing skills, and they get to spew coffee all over their office! WIN!!

Here's another one:

"Please excuse the Impertinent Daughter’s absences on Tuesday, February 11th, Wednesday, February12th, and Thursday, February 13th.

There was an epic battle with a virus that turned into a secondary sinus infection. Fortunately, the valiant Sir Zithromax came to her rescue, and destroyed the bacterium that tried to invade her sinuses. This enabled her trusty White Knights to defeat the despicable virus that had brought her down in the first place. Thus, she is able to return to school today. Do not be startled by the barking. It is not a werewolf. It is merely Miss Impertinent coughing."

Or this one:

"Please excuse the Impertinent Daughter’s absence from school on Friday, January 11th, and Monday, January 13th. We were having adventures with possible mono, which most fortunately, did not come to pass. The doctor did not want Miss Impertinent to return to school until the blood work came back, due to Miss Impertinent’s unfortunate habit of biting people and trying to turn them into werewolves. We’ve had the werewolf discussion with Miss Impertinent. I don’t think she’s listening. Still, the blood work came back and showed no mono, just an opportunistic virus that had nothing to do with werewolves, and everything to do with making her queasy and tired. She should be fine for most activities, but definitely not werewolf hunting."

This is one of my favorites:

"Please excuse the Impertinent Daughter’s absence on Wednesday, January 8th. There was nausea. There was cramping. There was fatigue. And even worse, there came the Dreaded Noises We Shall Not Speak Of. Because of this, I, in my role of “She Who Must Be Obeyed,” decreed that the Impertinent Daughter should stay home and not inflict herself, nor her possible projectile vomiting (which thankfully did not occur) on the innocent populace of the high school.

She is still pale, wobbly, and vaguely nauseous, but determined not to miss classes. Should she become horizontal and immovable, I shall arrive forthwith to whisk her away to the doctor."

On that last line, I ALMOST said, "I shall arrive forthwith to whisk her away to the voodoo practitioner of our choice, there to have beads rattled over her, and then to be suspended by one leg until the evil spirits be exorcised or fall out forthwith..." but I figured that would have been a bit much. Besides, l like to keep the excuse notes to one page, if possible. It's best I limit myself, you know?

Lest you think I left the Impossible Son out, here's the only excuse note I could find (I think two others are either on the iMac, which is unavailable right now, or simply lost):

"Please excuse the Impossible Son’s absences on Tuesday, March 4th, and Wednesday, March 5th. First he turned green. Then he got the bulging eyes. There may have been excessive salivation. Thankfully, there was no projectile vomiting, though there were prodigious amounts of mucus.

Did I mention tonsils the size of ping pong balls?

Thankfully, it wasn’t some strange tropical disease, though that might have been quite exciting. And the doctor tested him for strep and mono (which seems to be going around), both of which turned out to be negative. So he should be good to go. However, should he start sprouting excessive hair, well, it could be puberty, or he could be turning into a werewolf. Please refrain from the use of silver bullets until I can come pick him up."

Fortunately, the staff at both the junior high and the high school have been getting a big kick out of these excuse notes. I had the principal at the junior high run me down one morning to tell me how much she enjoyed reading a note I had written when the Impossible Son got his first migraine (ugh). It reminded her of her mother writing a similar excuse note for her when she was in high school, so she thought it was pretty hilarious. And the normally dour attendance clerk at the high school is cheerful and greets me by name when I call in now. So... WIN!!!

And just think, they have at least five more years of this, until the Impossible Son graduates!

*evil smirk*
auntbijou: (Kirk duh what??)
Can I just... vent my spleen here? I mean, seriously, the people at the middle school... the stupid, oh, my gods, the stupid...

That steady thumping you hear? It's me, banging my head over and over again into the desk.

You know, seriously, I really thought it was Mrs. Sees-Plots-Everywhere, but apparently, getting assigned to the middle school causes some sort of... brain damage. Or maybe Sees-Plots-Everywhere cursed the school, sort of like how Voldemort cursed the DADA position at Hogwarts. I dunno, but the last two weeks have been... horrible, and today was just the capper.


Okay, so... last Monday... no wait, let me start over. It all started with a phone call. The Impossible Son had been playing a "game,", one of those stupid games 6th grade kids play that are so stupid and you think, "Surely my child is too smart to play that sort of stupid game," But, my son isn't immune from Stupidity, so... he took a pencil, turned it over and rubbed the eraser into his skin until... he literally rubbed a hole into his skin. Not only that... he did it three more times! All on the back of his hand!!

The principal of the school, who was the Impertinent Daughter's vice principal last year and thus knows me, called me to tell me that Mr. Impossible wasn't in trouble, but if it happened again, it would be an automatic suspension. Okay, fine. I can handle that. And the Husbandly One and I had the "any game that involve bodily injury, or harm, to yourself or others, is a game you are not going to play because it is stupid and people who encourage you to play these games are not your friends, they are stupid people you do not need to be around" talk with him. And that was that.

I thought.

I had been told to keep the eraser burns on his hand covered until they were healed, so I went and bought some vet wrap at the local feed store because, let me tell you something: Band-Aids aren't going to stay stuck to my kid's skin. His papa is the same way, I don't know if it's skin oils or what. The only band-aids that have any hope of staying on his skin more than ten minutes at a pop (and that's a generous estimate) are the waterproof kind made by 3M. So vet-wrap and gauze it was.

So, by the following Monday, I was almost out of vet wrap and didn't have enough to wrap between his thumb and forefinger to make sure the dang thing would stay put. Needless to say, it slid off by first period.

His first period teacher, a language arts teacher I will most generously call "Mrs. Picky" instead of what I want to call her (which is Mrs. Bitch), sent him to the nurse, who threw something together with band-aids and... get this... scotch tape. Yes, you read that right, scotch tape, the tape you use on wrapping paper when wrapping a present. Yes. That lasted... not at all. And when he got into band and started playing his trombone, it became painful, so he pulled it off. In the meantime, he had a friction burn from gym on his forearm so that had a band-aid, too, that Mrs. B... Picky put on his arm. That was stayed in place, until it fell off, unnoticed.

About this time, Mrs. Picky shows up to pull my son out of band class. Apparently, this is something she's been doing quite frequently, and no one has been informing me of this. Nor have I authorized her to pull Mr. Impossible out of classes. Period.

So, Mrs. Picky pulls him, notices the missing bandage and immediately decides to write him up and haul him to the office, where he is put in In School Suspension. Which basically means he's suspended and can't attend classes, but... within the school instead of sending him home. Talking to the 6th grade Assistant Principal (hereforth to be called the AP), it sounds like he was put in I.S.S. to separate him from Mrs. Picky.


So, the Impossible Son is very upset when I pick him up and informs me of what happened, and that he will be serving in I.S.S. the next day as well. When I asked why, it turned out he had participated in another Stupid Game, this one called Nut Check Thursday This game involves going up to other boys and striking them lightly in the crotch with a hand and saying, "NUT CHECK THURSDAY!!" Except it was Friday.

Shoot me now. My son has testosterone poisoning.

He was caught, and assigned I.S.S. for the following Tuesday. And that one, I will freely admit, was wholly deserved. Because stupidity fully deserves punishment, right?

Now, while he was in I.S.S., his teachers were supposed to send his work to the I.S.S. room so he didn't fall behind. And they mostly did... except Mrs. Picky. And she waited until FRIDAY to decide he hadn't done his work, and she pulled him from P.E. and sent him to the library... not to work on the written part of his assignment, but to color a picture.

Yes. This woman pulled my son from his physical education class to have him color a picture. I am not kidding. I wish I were. Really.

And the only reason I found out about this was because my son lost a baby tooth in the library, and was sent to the nurse, who called me immediately. Because he had a second loose tooth he was in danger of losing, and it was causing him a great deal of pain, so they wanted me to come pick him up.

It wasn't until after we got in the car that I found out what had happened, and... I pretty much hit my limit of patience with Mrs. Picky at that moment. She rides him constantly, calls me and tells me things like, "Maybe you should move Mr. Impossible to another class, because he has such a hard time staying awake in mine. He's always half asleep, he never has a pencil, and he's always forgetting his I.D." Then she turns right around and says, "I love having your son in my class because he's so smart, and he's always reading, and he's so funny, and I just love him!!"

Talk about mixed messages!!

Okay, so I looked at him and said, "You want me to transfer you out of her class while we're here?"

He looked massively relieved and said, "Oh, thank you, Mom!!"

We go in to see the counselor, and I smiled pleasantly and said, "I would like to have my son switched out of his first period language arts class and into another first period language arts class. There's a personality conflict with his current teacher and it just isn't getting better, so I think it would be best for everyone all around if he's removed from her class and put in another one."

The counselor smiled at me and said, "Well, Mrs. J., I will speak to the AP and see if we can do that. It's late in the year, and we may not be able to do it, but I'll do my best."

Yeah, that's pretty much when my patience went out the door. I kept my smile, but raised an eyebrow and said, "Let me rephrase that. I'm not asking you to switch him out of that class. I'm telling you to switch him out of that class. It's not a request. He will be pulled."

"Mrs. J., it may not be possible..."

"Oh, it will be possible," I said, keeping a firm rein on my temper. "Because you put him in I.S.S. to get him away from her, you put him in I.S.S. because he pulled off a band-aid that SHE had put on him, you have allowed her to pull him out of classes at least twice a week with what sounds like very little justification, because this is a class he happens to be doing very well in, and he spends more time in lunch detention because of her than he does actually eating his lunch. So, yes, this is going to get done. Because you and I both know there is much more than just a personality conflict going on here, and I have completely lost my patience with it. I am done, are you understanding me?"

She looked at me gravely for a moment and then said, "Yes, Mrs. J. I am understanding you. If you would please write a note with your request and the reason for it, emphasizing personality conflict, then sign it and date it, I will give it to the AP and tell her that this is urgent. His schedule should be changed by Monday."

"Thank you, Mrs. C," I said, and I accepted paper and pen, writing the note right there. I dated it, signed it, and then I looked at her and said, "And this will be done by Monday, won't it?"

"I'll do my best, Mrs. J." she said.

"No," I said. "This will be done by Monday."

"Yes, Mrs. J, it will be done by Monday," she said.

I took my son and left, and went home.

So... today came, and... I got a phone call this morning. From Mrs. Picky. She informed me that she was writing up the Impossible Son for a referral, because he didn't do his journal assignment in class, and didn't finish his worksheet by the end of class. "I wasn't in class today," she gushed over the phone, "I was supervising some testing, so there was a substitute in my class, and she told me that your son said he was on restrictions and couldn't write. So I went to find him during his band class and there he was, playing his trombone just fine, so I decided to write him up for a referral. Would you like to speak to him?"

Which made me realize he had been standing there listening to all of this. And that when I talked to him, she would be standing there, listening.

Yeah, I was at the school within the hour. I went to see the counselor, and she looked up at me and said, "Oh, Mrs. J! I'm so sorry, but I haven't had time to get to Mr. Impossible's schedule!"

I smiled grimly and said, "Okay, so, this is what I'm going to do. I'm pulling Mr. Impossible out of school today. When you get his schedule redone, you call me and let me know. Because he's not coming back to school until he's out of that class. He and Mrs. Picky have gone way past personality conflict and mutual antagonism and that class has become a hostile environment. I won't have it. So, you change his schedule. The only thing I ask is that you keep him with his math teacher, because he's actually doing pretty well in her class. Other than that, do what you want."

Her mouth fell open during this "But, Mrs. J, these things take time!"

"No. They don't," I said angrily, not bothering to try to control it any more, because I was just so done. "If you can't do this, then I won't be bringing him back. My husband and I will pull him from this school and put him in another district. And since it wouldn't be fair to put our son in a better school district and leave his sister here, we'll pull her, too, and put her in the same district with him."

She actually went kind of green with that one and said, "I'll work on it right now."

"Thank you," I said, and turned to sign my son out. And on the line where it said "reason to check student out," I wrote "Rescue Mission."

I took him to San Marcos, because I had an errand at the library, and within the hour, my phone rang. It was the counselor. "I gave the information to the AP, and she approved it. Mr. Impossible will have his new schedule in the morning."

"Thank you," I said and let the Impossible Son know.

And you know, I am SO TIRED of having to spend so much time in front offices, trying to get this district to do right by my kids. It's ridiculous. It's so unnecessary. It's like clearing one hurdle only to find out there's another one to jump, and it's so frustrating. If we could move tomorrow and find a better school district, I'd do it in a heartbeat. But we can't. So we try to make the best of it that we can and hope that what we do to supplement our kids' education is enough.

Tomorrow, I will most likely be bearding the principal in her den to see if we can (1) get that damn referral shredded, and (2) find out just how many times that woman pulled my son out of classes. Because that? No. Just no. Because it seems like that was more harassment than for actual education purposes. And I am definitely not putting up with that!
auntbijou: made by <lj comm=lvlwings_icons> (Delicious Hot Schmoes!)
The Impossible Son has one class period that at one time might have been called "study hall." However, this one is more interactive, as it's basically a tutoring period because our district fell way behind on math and reading scores ("hmmmm, wonder how that happened?" Auntie asks sarcastically). So... he's getting extra help in math and in language arts.

So, a couple of days ago, they were working on "correcting sentence fragments," basically changing fragments and making them into whole sentences. And the example given was "at the station," which had a finished example of "I can meet you at the station tomorrow morning."

Then the teacher made the mistake of saying, "But that's boring, I'm sure y'all can do better than that!"


So... these are the sentences my SON came up with. His "corrections" will be in italics. You might want to put any liquids far from the computer, and don't drink anything while reading, because some of them are surprisingly hysterical.

Don't say I didn't warn you!

1. Before the dance I killed a vampire.

2. While we worked on the experiment my friends turned into zombies.

3. Once the baseball season begins, THEY WILL COME!!

4. Ahead of me, he watched me with a bat.

5. After the summer vacation, vampires came.

6. Without a pen or pencil I can't kill Bigfoot.

7. Opposite the park he still watched me, but with Bigfoot.

8. When she began to speak a bear came, wielding a sword.

9. Even though the temperature was warm, the bears took over.

10. From my seat, I could see the orcs coming.

11. Next to the library, they were still watching me.

12. How the rumor spread was because of the duck.

13. On top of my dresser was a honey badger.

14. Past the principal's office, they continued to watch me.

15. When they are found, we take them to NARNIA!!

I think my personal favorite is #6. I laughed so hard when he read that one out to me that I nearly drove us into a ditch. Though... a bear wielding a sword is pretty funny, and so is a honey badger on a dresser. I wonder if it cares?

For eleven years old and having virtually no writing instruction beyond what I cram down his throat during those times he's willing to sit still for it, that's not a bad fledgling effort at letting his wonderfully weird sense of humor show through. What kind of bothers me, though, is the teacher had laughed and said, "This is weird. It's crazy, what's up with this??"

And then I remembered, "Oh, wait, that's right, they don't have things like irony, humor, and creativity here." Because, you know, this sort of thing, well... it's normal at my house!

Yes, yes, I'm getting sarcastic again.

Still, I'm proud of what he's done, and happy to see his creativity developing. I can't wait to see what he does next!
auntbijou: (Kirk duh what??)
Haven't posted in a while, I know. Real life keeps me busy, mostly in the form of two harum-scarums who regularly give me fits.

The Impossible Son has shot up this summer, growing at a rate that leaves me breathless. His feet are as big as mine, and the top of his head now comes up to the top of my upper lip. He can wear my shoes comfortably now. What's even weirder?

The Impertinent Daughter can wear his outgrown shoes. Guys... he's eleven, she's sixteen.

It's... mind-boggling, to say the least. I think the tall genes from my mom's family finally got turned on in my son.


The Impossible Son also got his first phone last week when the Husbandly One, Miss Impertinent, and I got our upgrades, and of course, he's going nuts with it. And driving us nuts in the process. Of course, I remember the Impertinent One doing much the same when she got her first phone. It will calm after a while. In the meantime, I have used his Blackberry to my advantage, setting the alarm on it when he goes off to play with a friend so he'll know precisely when he's supposed to come home. It's worked pretty well so far.

Heh, heh, heh...

Meanwhile, our clothes dryer has stopped heating, so unless we want to run up our electrical bill air drying our clothing, I have been hanging clothes out to dry on a clothesline in the backyard. I've discovered a few things about myself, too. Like... I still know now to tie a half-hitch knot... but have no memory of being taught how to do it. It's possible I learned it in boot camp, but... really, I have no clue.

And considering it's been forty one years since I last hung clothes out to dry, it's amazing how much I remember. Like.. turning jeans and shorts inside out so that the pockets dry, too. And hanging shirts inside out so they fade on the inside, not the outside. At least that's what my mom used to say.

I also totally understand why my mom wore loose house dresses when she hung clothes out on the line during the summer. Because it's friggin' hot out there, and shorts and a tank top just aren't cool enough! Ugh! At least I'm in Central Texas, where it only takes about fifteen minutes max to dry the clothes (sometimes, it only takes about five), as opposed to Houston, where it can take up to an hour or more, depending on the humidity. And you have to take the clothes in the very second they're dry... or they'll start to mildew.

Nope, no mildew out here!

Still, this hanging clothes out to dry and taking them back in is exhausting! I'm kind of dreading the bed sheets, but I know it has to be done. *sigh*

Hopefully, we can get a repair person out to at least look at the dryer soon and find out whether it's worth fixing or not. If it is, great, if it's not... not so great.

School starts in a week and a half, and I'm both looking forward to it... and dreading it. Looking forward to it because, hey, time alone to write again without someone either hovering over me or popping in every five minutes to ask questions. Dreading it because... the Impossible Son starts junior high, and while Mrs. Sees-Plots-Everywhere is no longer there (though this may change), I'm still going to worry. He may be growing, but he's still small, and Grand-Daddy's Smart-Ass Gene™ has kicked in big and strong this summer. This is not necessarily a good combination, unless he can think of the kinds of insults that stop people in their tracks.


The Impertinent Daughter starts her junior year this fall and guess who the new 11th grade principal is? In case y'all don't remember, Mrs. See's-Plots-Everywhere was the 8th grade principal when the Impertinent Daughter was still in junior high. She was the nutjob who tried to ban button-down shirts for the girls because "boys can unbutton them," and shirts that showed the collarbones because "that's inappropriate." Yep, you guessed it, she's the 11th grade principal at the high school, and if I have anything to say about it, she won't stay there long.

No, seriously, this woman needs to go. The district sticks her at the junior high, then moves her up to the high school, or the alternative high school, the parents rebel, the district yanks her out, puts her out to pasture until the next school year, then sticks her back at the junior high, where she'll hum along for a few years until they try to move her up again. Why do they do this, you ask?

Well, it could be a variety of reasons. It could be they need any warm body they can jam into administrative positions.

It could be that she has something on someone high up in the district.

It could be that the administration are complete and total idiots and keep hoping that the parents who keep trying to have her removed will disappear as their children graduate (I personally hold out for this one, even though they don't seem to realize this woman keeps pissing parents off every single year).

It could be she doesn't get fired because her husband was once on the board of trustees. Or still is. I honestly don't know, because the lineup of the board seems to change on a weekly basis.

I knew something was off when I logged onto the high school's website and saw, for the first time in years, a dress code. Are they kidding?? Yeah, she's not staying, folks. I'm just sayin'... And it's not even ME they have to worry about. There are more than a few kids who are "different" at that school... and all of them are honor students, all of them are from what everyone likes to think of as "good" families, and the first time that woman crosses one of them, oh, boy, I think I'll just pop some popcorn, sit back, and enjoy the show. In fact, I'm pretty sure who she's going to piss off first, and the mom in question knows all the major players in town and has no problem getting them all behind her. Mrs. Sees-Plots-Everywhere won't know what hit her. I can't wait.

I should really be ashamed of how gleeful I feel about this, but... I'm not. Nope. Not one bit. The woman lost my consideration when she locked the girls in the cafeteria to lecture them about their clothing and their personal choices.

And that's how my last few weeks have been going. How about y'all?

Facebook Status, Anyone?

Wednesday, June 13th, 2012 05:29 pm
auntbijou: made by <lj comm=lvlwings_icons> (Delicious Hot Schmoes!)
This is what I posted on Facebook a few minutes ago...

"Grocery shopping with my children is rather like being orbited by my own tiny planet and moon. A hyper, dancing, chattering, extremely frenetic tiny planet while a very grouchy, cranky moon continually snarks and fusses at the tiny planet. No wonder I forget stuff. Aleve, please?"

The Impossible Son orbits around me, literally sticking to my side and hopping, dancing, twirling, and jigging on both sides of me, and behind me, and in front of me, until I can't keep track of him and I end up almost falling over him or bumping him or... yeah. And yes, it drives me NUTS. It was one thing when he was small and I could easily move him either into the basket or up on my back or hip and thus out of the way.

Now, however, he's eleven, and he's in that all long arms/long legs stage of pre-explosive growth, and that's just entirely too much boy to be dancing around Mama and nearly tripping her up!

And while he's doing this, he's talking my ear off and with the grocery store being full of people and annoying music, I can't make out a word he's saying, and I can't focus or concentrate for anything. GAAAAAAHHHH!!!!

In the meantime, my daughter is pushing the basket, fussing almost nonstop at him to get off the shelf, get off the the display, move out of the way, don't touch that, put that down, don't pick that up, get that for Mum, please, no, don't put that in the basket, not that one, genius, the other one, wait, no, don't touch that or you'll knock it all over... MOOOOOM!!!

Yes, as you can see, the fun of grocery shopping with my kids lives on.

It's very... migraine inducing.

Good thing I love them. Of course, I can't walk away from them and pretend they aren't mine because (1) they look just like me and (2) it's a small town, everybody knows us, and no one is fooled any more, though they might take them off my hands for an hour or two out of sheer kindness. Maybe.

Have I mentioned that my kids are also going through the ravenous wolf phase? The Impossible Son is eating nearly everything in sight. Fruit doesn't last long in our house. Or frozen vegetables. Or crackers. Or ham. Or hot dogs. Or leftover grilled hamburger patties. Or cheese. Or chips. Or bananas... dammit, I forgot bananas!!


And the Impertinent Daughter, at 16, is still growing, and has moments of, "I'm not hungry," followed by three or four days of, "eat ALL the food in the house!!" And there are days when she sort of eyes her brother, but he's too skinny to eat. Not enough meat on those long bones of his. Perhaps I should be nervous!

And then the Husbandly One comes home and says, "Where's all the food?? Didn't you just go grocery shopping???"

And I say, "It was sheer self-preservation!! I had to, or they would eat ME!!!

I don't know why he never believes me...
auntbijou: (Kirk duh what??)
You know, I haven't posted a Weird Animal Story in a while, mainly because the Killer Psycho Mockingbirds have been relatively quiet. So... I guess we were kind of overdue.

So... this morning. We troop out of the house so I can take the kids to school, and as we get to the car, I pause. Why? Because there's this huge BUZZARD, also known as a turkey vulture in the street behind my car. Just sort of... hanging out. You know. "Doopty doo, doopty doo, nothing to worry about folks, hyuk, just doin' mah buzzard thang heere, heh... don't mind me, now, y'all just... pretend I'm not here!"


And he won't move. Usually, buzzards don't like being approached, and will take off if you get too close. Not this one. I figured whatever it was that was dead, it must be really, er... tasty. Or something. Problem was, I couldn't smell anything dead nearby, and didn't see anything, either. So, I herded the kids into the car and had to back up creatively so I didn't end up with a big ol' turkey buzzard stuck to my rear bumper. And it was as I was pulling out that I realized what had attracted Mr. Buzzard.

Our neighbors had this... this... HUGE FISH lying in their front yard against the mutual hedge between our properties. I swear the thing must have been six feet long!! NO WONDER Mr. Buzzard was so determined to stick around, I mean, he must have thought he'd hit the Mother Lode of Dead Crap!!

Okay, so... the kids were freaking out, and laughing hysterically, and kept looking back to see if he'd approached the Big Dead Fish yet the whole way up the street.

The Impossible Son looked back as we turned and said, "He's going for it!"

So... we get to the Impossible Son's school, and there is a truck in front of us that has a... tiny deer sitting on the hitch. No, seriously. A tiny little deer, sitting cross-legged on the hitch with one of it's forelegs up in the air, like it's saying, "Hi there!!"

The Impertinent One said, "Oh, I wonder if it's like the cow Papa and I saw on a truck once! When they hit the turn signal, the cow's eyes glowed red and the legs went up and down!"

"Yaaaaagh!" I said. "That sounds creepy!! And distracting!!"

The truck didn't turn, so the kids were disappointed. However, after I dropped the Impossible Son off, and then went to drop Miss Impertinent off at the high school, the truck appeared again, turning out of the driveway of one of the schools I pass on the way home, and there was the tiny deer again. This time, the truck turned, and THE DEER WAVED AT ME AND KICKED ONE LEG UP AND DOWN!!


I almost had a car accident, I was so... mesmerized...

So, when I got home, Mr. Turkey Buzzard was pecking half-heartedly at the Big Dead Fish, and I could swear he was saying, "WTF is this shit??" I peeked around the hedge and realized his problem right away.

It was a TAXIDERMIED Big Dead Fish!! In fact, it had lost most of its scales at some point, and there was fiber sticking out from where it had split at the top, and oh, the reek!!! Evidently, the bushes sort of protected us from it.

Mr. Buzzard gave this indignant squawk and sort of hop-flapped away before taking off for something less well-preserved. I mean, seriously, it's pretty bad when you manage to disgust a BUZZARD.
auntbijou: made by <lj comm=lvlwings_icons> (Delicious Hot Schmoes!)
So, after the Impossible Son's soccer practice, it was decided to head to our favorite local Tex-Mex restaurant, Mr. Taco. We were in the mood for fajitas, or at least the Husbandly One, the Impertinent Daughter, and I were. We have discovered that Mr. Taco's "fajitas for two" plate feeds the three of us nicely. The Impossible Son had his usual chicken strips, no gravy.

We forgot that Thursdays are live mariachi band night.

Did I mention there are all hard surfaces at Mr. Taco, with nothing to absorb sound?


Anyhow, yeah, it was loud, but the food was worth it! Once we'd eaten ourselves to a lull, the Impertinent One begged a pen off me, grabbed a clean napkin, and immediately began to sketch the mariachi band members, then took it to them before fleeing back to our table.

They passed it around among themselves, looking at it intently, then marched over to our table and serenaded her with "Just My Imagination," and a Spanish/English version of "I Just Called To Say I Love You."

Her smile was incandescent, and she giggled almost the entire time, hiding her face every once in a while, but mostly beaming at them with delight. I rubbed her back from time to time when it looked like she was getting overwhelmed, but mostly? She absolutely loved it!

I think she was also chuffed that two of the mariachi singers actually fought over who would get to sing to her! And if you've never seen a violinist and a trumpet player arguing over who is gonna sing to the pretty girl, then you have no idea what you missed!

I think she's just beginning to have an inkling of the doors her art can open for her. This is going to be an interesting journey to watch!

LIFE. It Happens.

Thursday, February 2nd, 2012 11:44 am
auntbijou: made by <lj comm=lvlwings_icons> (Delicious Hot Schmoes!)
Can I just... step off the roller coaster for a few minutes? Kinda feeling dizzy... just a bit.

Let's see, we're having to replace the central air/central heating unit in our house because (1) it has reached the age where there are no spare parts available any longer and (2) even if there were spare parts available, it wouldn't be safe to fix.


Yeah, that was fun. The guy who came to repair it works for the company who installed it in the first place some twenty years ago, and after first telling me what needed fixing and how much it would cost, then telling me the parts that needed fixing needed to be replaced, then telling me they don't make those parts any more, I got to deal with the blustering, Good Ol' Boy owner of said company. Mr. Good Ol' Boy took one look at me and decided that I was the type that could be easily manipulated into what he wanted me to do, and proceeded to try to intimidate me into agreeing with him that his company should be the ones to do the work.

Y'all know that went over like a lead balloon, right?

Funny how Mr. Blow Hard and his tech went all through the closet where the CA/CH unit is housed, with Mr. Blow Hard taking measurements and loudly telling his tech that they'd have to rip out the wall, and probably part of the floor to put in a new coil, and he would recommend a contractor to rebuild the wall after they were done replacing the unit, blah, blah, blah, and it never occurred to him that I was texting the Husbandly One basically a blow by blow account of what was going on while I sat quietly at the kitchen table with the laptop. Mostly, Mr. Blow Hard shouted out a series of arcane numbers that I'm guessing were supposed to be measurements of some kind, or maybe it was just supposed to impress me with how technical he was...

When he finally "presented" me with his "findings," I said politely, "Well, I'll discuss this with my husband, and we'll let you know what we decide."

He frowned, then smiled indulgently and looked at his tech, nodding as he said, "Oh, right. You'll discuss this with your husband." He snickered. "You mean, you'll ask him what to do and then do what he tells you."

Yeah, that pretty much made me see red, but I just raised an eyebrow and said, "No, I mean I'll discuss it with my husband. We're partners. Neither one of us makes big money decisions on our own. We talk it out, go over the pros and cons, and go from there. Sometimes he has the final say, sometimes I have the final say, but either way, it gets discussed, we do research, and decide how big a hit our budget can take, because it affects both of us. So when I say we'll discuss it and let you know, that's precisely what I mean. You have a problem with that?"

"Well, if you go with us, you won't have to pay the service fee for this visit," Mr. Blow Hard said, still trying to work the intimidation factor. "But if you go with someone else, I'll have to send you a bill for $85."

"That's fine," I said with a sweet smile. "We'll let you know."

"You should decide soon, because we might be booked up," he said as he headed for the door.

"We'll take that chance," I said firmly. "Bye now."

Yeah, that was fun.

We called a couple of companies, but decided on one recommended to us by the Tall Blonde. What settled it was (1) he got back to us and (2) he didn't just look at the main unit. He also went up into the attic to check the ducts and connections, and went under the house to check the coil and the drains. He was very patient with my questions, and also cleared up a mystery that's been driving us crazy for some time now.

Every time the A/C or the heat came on, I'd smell this... faint burning odor that made the back of my throat burn, and would sometimes set my asthma off. We had the unit checked several times because of this, but there was never anything we could find to explain it.

Then Mr. A/C guy takes a look at the duct work and peers up at the top of our unit and goes, "Huh."

Yeah, that's not a good sound, either.

Seems that when Mr. Blow Hard's company installed the unit, they used a type of duct work that has since been banned in our country because it's... well, basically a piece of crap. And when all the new ductwork was installed, they left this original duct work in place where the unit connects to it all. Basically, what happens to the crap duct is that it dries out and starts cracking, then dry rots and gets blown about in the system. That's what I've been smelling every time the unit comes on.

Mr. A/C said, "What I don't understand is why they left it there. Because even if the new duct wouldn't fit, there's a way to work around it and adapt it, so... why leave the old stuff? It's not safe!"

Well, judging by the crap unit Mr. Blow Hard wanted us to buy, I'd say it was done to cut corners. After all, how many homeowners actually look up into their attic to see what they've got up there? And how many of those that do would know what to look for or what they're even looking at?

We're fortunate that the weather has been mild, though the first three or four nights after we lost our heat were tough, because it got down in the thirties. Thank goodness for lots of blankets!! This house holds on to the cold like you wouldn't believe, and I've had to open the windows during the day just so I can feel my fingers!!

The Impertinent Daughter's team survived a three day soccer tournament over last weekend, and so did we! Again, in San Marcos at the fields where the Impossible Son and I froze our katooshies off. And, yes, it was cold, but not as cold as last year! Friday night, they were in first place, but by Saturday afternoon, because of the bizarre point system the folks who were running the tournament were using, the JV found themselves playing for third.

I'm still not sure where we placed, because every person I've asked have said something different. Personally, I think they placed pi.

Hey, it makes about as much sense as that point system!!

And the Impossible Son has started soccer practice for the rec league this week, which is going to be frustrating, I can tell already. Why? Because once again, there weren't enough coaches for the record FIVE U12 teams that were formed this season, so they basically started grabbing any warm body. And one of the warm bodies is the woman who is coaching my son's team.

I have nothing against her. She's a good person, I've known her since the Impertinent Daughter started playing soccer, and now her daughter and mine are playing JV for the high school. It's cool. However... she's never coached soccer before in her life and has no idea where to start. The good news is, she knows this, and has enlisted the help of several girls on the high school team, as well as any parents who have any sort of know how, or is willing to help out. This can work, I've seen it work before.

I've also seen it go to hell in a handbasket.

So... I'm hoping and keeping my fingers crossed that things will go well. However, the Husbandly One and I have decided this will be Mr. Impossible's last season playing here. If he plays rec league next fall, it will be in San Marcos.

And that is the State of Auntie so far. Woo.
auntbijou: Thank you, Karadin! (Gackt eats!!)
So... had a parent-teacher conference with the Impossible Son's primary teacher today. It was interesting, and encouraging.

It was only supposed to be for 15 minutes, but... we ended up talking for 45! We talked about the Impossible Son's math problems at length, and I found that he's been rushing through his math assignments so he can read a book afterwards. While she's pleased to see him reading, she's not so pleased that he's rushing through his math, getting problems wrong, and not asking for help. He says nothing to her. Just finishes as quickly as possible and hands in it, then grabs his book and disappears into it.


Shades of his mother. Meaning me. Which means I know exactly what he's doing.

So, I told her, explaining yet again about the lack of trust in his teachers, and said, "It's not you personally. This started in second grade, with Mrs. Oblivious Teacher, who is now teaching fifth grade." I filled her in on what he had gone through, trotted out several of the math "explanations" she had given me, and followed up with what he had gotten in third and fourth grade, including the outside issues that were causing problems for him.

"Was he as lost as he seems to be now last year, too?" Mrs. S. asked me.

"Oh, yes," I replied. "I had Mrs. H. send home math homework, worksheets, whatever it took, to tutor him through what was stumping him."

We went over what I've found so far that stumps him, showed her what he was doing and what I had done to correct it, and finished with, "I can't help him if I don't know what's going wrong, so please, please, please send home worksheets!"

About this time, a mouse made its presence known.

Not long after that, a second larger mouse made its presence known.

We spent the rest of our time with our feet up off the floor, keeping an eye out for the mice, and talking about the Impossible Son and what we could do to help him.

Somewhere in there, I found myself volunteering to tutor three of her students who are having difficulty with reading comprehension. They read beautifully, but have no memory whatsoever of what they've read. "Apparently, this is a skill they didn't learn back in second grade," she said grimly. "Nor have they been tested or had any sort of intervention recommended, so far as I can find out. And the parents are... not responding to any of my notes."

Oh, goody.

So... this should be fun. I'll start out twice a week, and depending on how things go, I may end up doing it more often, but we'll see. I figure getting them to break the stories down into smaller parts and asking them to tell me what they remember is a good place to start, and I'll expand from there.

The other advantage is that this gets me into the Impossible Son's classroom twice a week, so I can see what's going on and unobtrusively observe him in class.

Lastly, I also need to talk to his Language Arts teacher about why he's making a 75 in a class he normally makes 90's to 100's in. I mean, seriously, this is a kid who is reading at a 7th grade level! I mean, I have my suspicions, but... I'll wait until I talk to the teacher.


Tis a puzzlement!!
auntbijou: (Default)
So... it's been awhile, hasn't it?

Part of that's been because we had the Stomach Virus from Hell, which was possibly a norovirus. Well, the Husbandly One got it on a Wednesday night, threw up and had... um... well, let's just say he drove the porcelain bus, too. Yay. He had me worried to the point of hovering.

I don't hover. Unless someone is really sick.

He got better Thursday afternoon, which was a good thing, because that's the day the school didn't call me when the Impossible Son had been attacked at school.


By Friday, I had a meeting with the principal, informing her in no uncertain terms that she would be seeing both myself and the Husbandly One for a meeting, it was not going to be postponed to a more convenient time because as far as we were concerned, since she and her staff dropped the ball, her convenience was irrelevant to the situation.

I will say this about the Impossible Son's principal. Confronting her is like bashing yourself into a brick wall surrounded by fluffy pink blondeness. Seriously. First, she tried to blame the lack of calling on the counselor. "I told her to do it immediately," Mrs. K. said. "She knew she was supposed to inform you first thing!"

"Except she was in the office with you, because according to your own words, the student was out of control."

"Well, yes, but she should have called you the minute she left my office, and I reprimanded her for it, telling her that her priority is always to inform the parents..."

"Mrs. L. has always called me when there is a problem," I said firmly. "That has never been a problem for us before."

Yeah, that kind of threw her.

And... she tried to turn the Impossible Son's esteem issues back on us. Ohhhh, don't even go there! Don't... even.

We announced our intention to transfer Mr. Impossible, and THO tried to couch it diplomatically, saying that sometimes, just changing an environment can be good (he's had personal experience with that), and of course, she tried to discourage us because they really, really don't want to lose the Impossible Son from that particular school, which is the "flagship" of the district.

*insert eyeroll here*

And finding out what measures they were taking, in the meantime, to protect our son was like... pulling hen's teeth. She kept citing privacy laws to us and I finally snapped and said, "Look, I just want to know if my son is going to be safe! I want to know what guarantee there is that this won't happen again. I want to know what you are doing to make sure he's safe! Are you moving this kid to another class? Are you separating him out and putting him in in-school suspension? Are you sending him to the alternate school? Are you fitting him with a shock collar? What??"

I mean, she wouldn't even tell me if this kid was bigger than Mr. Impossible!!

I found out later through a friend who works at Mr. Impossible's school that Lug has a "shadow." A teacher who is assigned specifically to him who is with him at all times, and that he isn't allowed to come into contact with the other children.

It was a most unsatisfactory meeting on all sides.

So, THO and I made an appointment to talk to the principal of the school across the street from our backyard. She was pleasant and calm, asking for our son's name and taking notes when we told her why we were there and wanted to transfer him. Then she dropped the bomb.

It seems that the fifth grade class in our district is the largest ever, and the fifth grade classes at all four elementary schools in our town are literally jam-packed to the gills. In fact, the class at the Impossible Son's school is the largest in the district, to the point that they had to hire a fifth teacher just to handle the overload.

I already knew this. It started in second grade, when they had to hire a fifth teacher (there are normally four teachers at each grade level at his school) and let her go at the end of the year, then hired a fifth 3rd grade teacher the next year... and let her go, and so on and so forth. I just didn't realize it was district wide.

Anyhow, the principal, Mrs. O. told us she would give us a call after reviewing the situation with the fifth grade teachers at her school, and as soon as there was an opening.

That was Friday. That night, the Impossible Son got the stomach bug, and threw up continuously for several hours. He wanted his Papa with him, so THO stayed up with him while I went to grab some sleep, only to be shaken awake at 2 a.m. "We need to take Mr. Impossible to ER," THO said. "He's dehydrated."

So, I got up, got dressed, woke up the Impertinent One, grabbed a blanket, a towel, and a bowl, and drove to San Marcos and the ER there. That's when we found out it was possibly norovirus, and that we weren't the only ones. There were a lot of people with the same thing there.

Fun, fun, fun.

The Impertinent One, in the meantime, trying to stay awake and to not starve, raided the vending machines and consumed Dr. Pepper, a slice of carrot cake, a Coke, and Doritos. This... made her incredibly hyper and it was exhausting just to look at her. When we got home, the Impossible Son crashed on one couch, THO passed out in our bed, and I went and curled up in the Impertinent One's bed.

I was too tired to process that my teenage daughter was hyper and had nothing to do!!

When I eventually woke up several hours later, I staggered into the dining room and stopped, frowning. Something was missing. The feeling increased as I moved through the kitchen, and then into the living room.

She had cleaned the dining room, the kitchen, and the living room. She did dishes and several loads of laundry and... and... then she... she...


I am still gobsmacked. Still.

Needless to say, our weekend was pretty mellow after that.

Well, Monday, Mrs. O. called and informed me that she had talked to Mrs. K., who had assured her that measures were in place to protect my son. And Mrs. O. was hesitant to transfer my son, but not because of Mrs. K's assurances. She said, "The thing is, we have a group of boys in our fifth grade classes and there is a lot of... ahem... drama going on with them. Normally, this is a problem with the girls, but this year, for some odd reason, it's the boys. And I'm really concerned that if we transfer your son here, we will be taking him from one ... dramatic environment... and dropping him smack-bang into the middle of another dramatic environment with the added bonus that he would be The New Kid. And Mrs. J.... that would be like tying meat around his neck and dropping him in a shark tank."

"I can see that," I said with a sigh, and I do. Great.

I haven't called the other elementary just down the street because that's the school we transferred Miss Impertinent away from when she was being bullied, and the same woman is still principal. She didn't protect Miss Priss, and I don't have a lot of confidence in her protecting Mr. Impossible.


That night, the Impertinent Daughter had a choir concert at the school, and I... wasn't feeling so good. But I went, leaving THO with the Impossible Son, and sat through the junior high choir's unenthusiastic and uninspired droning (no, you can't possibly call that singing) and was relieved when it was the high school choir's turn, because they actually can and do sing, and... drove home after, hoping the rock in my stomach would go away.

Yeah, I spent the night throwing up and ... driving the porcelain bus. Let's put it this way, THO didn't change out of his work clothes until the next afternoon.

So far, the Impertinent One has avoided it. *knocks frantically on wood* This stomach virus is ripping its way through town, and I just hope it doesn't come back for a second visit because... eurgh!!

And then this week, I had a checkup with the endocrinologist. During my last appointment, there was concern that the Lump on my thyroid seemed to be growing, so I was scheduled for an ultrasound, which ended up being rescheduled several times due to circumstances beyond my control (i.e. sick kids). Well, I finally got it done, and when the doctor saw me, he had a pleased smile on his face. The Lump has apparently been reabsorbed, and while they are going to be keeping close tabs on me (I go back in December), they're pretty certain this is just one more part of having Hashimoto's thyroiditis (anybody know Hashimoto? I'm sure he's missing his thyroiditis, and I really wouldn't mind giving it back...).

So... there we are, all caught up. And now, it's time for me to pick the Impossible Son up from school!
auntbijou: made by <lj comm=lvlwings_icons> (Delicious Hot Schmoes!)
Yesterday, on the way home from a trip into San Marcos, the Impossible Son and I sang the Moosebutter Star Wars song at the top of our lungs all the way home.

It was awesome.

He's still recovering from chickenpox, so he had to accompany me in to San Marcos for a trip to Dr. Tummy to get samples of my acid reflux med while we wait for the drama over my prescription to get resolved. Who will win? InHumane Care, or the intrepid and determined Dr. Tummy, with assistance from Mr. W., the Small Town Pharmacist Who Could? Tune in next week for an update!!!


Well, yesterday was full of little trips. I took Mr. Impossible in for a followup with the doctor about his tests, yes to chickenpox, no to Lyme, and to check his pox out. Most of them are crusting, so he should be good to go back to school next week! Then the trip into San Marcos for the samples, and then a stop by his school to pick up his makeup work.

The trip home was a blast, actually! I mean, there were were, walking back to the car, him skipping along next to me while holding my hand and chattering on cheerfully about any and everything, and I have no idea why, but I just started randomly singing, "Nobody cares if you upset a droooooid, 'cause droids don't tear your arms out of sockeeeeet..." and he chimed in with, "I suggest a new straaaaategy, let the Woooookie win," and we both sang loudly and badly, "Because nobody caaaaares... if you upset a droooooooid!"

And yes, there were lots of other people in the parking lot, and yes, we got stared at, and no, we did not care at all!!

After that, it was a foregone conclusion that I would select the song to play on the CD in the car, and would hit repeat, so we could sing it over and over again on the drive home, complete with gestures and faces. I am sure the people on the freeway in San Marcos enjoyed our emoting, and I'm also sure the people at the light before heading down the state highway thought we'd lost our minds.

I especially enjoyed the Impossible Son's faces during the section of Luke whining. The pathos! The utter dejection! The extreme sulkiness!!

It made my heart swell with pride!

I love moments like that with my son. I don't often get to see his extremely silly side like that, and I have discovered that he has inherited my, and my dad's, extremely elastic face. He's got a pretty wacky sense of humor that I truly do appreciate, and is developing a wit as sharp as his sister's. Pretty soon, their verbal sparring is going to take a whole new level, and I'm going to find it harder and harder to out-geek them.

I look forward to it with great enthusiasm!

Because... nobody caaaaaaaares if you upset a drooooooooid!!


Wednesday, August 17th, 2011 12:11 am
auntbijou: (Kirk duh what??)
Add this to the file of Things I Am Not Ready For:


The Impossible Son... has fuzz on his upper lip.

*flail flail flail*

No, it's not cat hair, it's not chocolate syrup on his upper lip... it's hair. Stiff little hairs.


I'd noticed this a few weeks ago, actually, but tucked it away neatly in my Denial Drawer. Nice big roomy thing, my Denial Drawer. Lots of room for stuff I'd Rather Not Think About™

Anyhow, I'd noticed this... subtle shading on the corners of his upper lip. It was really apparent when we were at the beach, and I had actually pretended at one point to be rubbing sand off his chin so I could take a better look in bright sunlight and... promptly shoved what I'd seen in my Denial Drawer. But I couldn't help noticing it again, and again, and again.

Finally, tonight, in our poorly lit bedroom (we had the lights low to encourage sleepiness), it was unmistakable, and I got the flashlight and put on my glasses and took a really good look... then got the Husbandly One for corroboration, and... yeah. Fuzzy Lip Syndrome.


Where did my baby go????

And while I'm going through this emotional toss up of my Denial Drawer, the Husbandly One says, "Oh, yeah, I started shaving when I was TWELVE."


Don't mind me, I'll just go curl up in the corner with a paper bag over my head, rearranging the contents of my Denial Drawer. While singing. Loudly. And NOT thinking about the hair on my son's upper lip. And his legs.

*sticking her fingers in her ears and singing "LA-LA-LA-LA-LA-I-CAN'T-HEAR-YOU!" loudly*
auntbijou: made by <lj comm=lvlwings_icons> (Delicious Hot Schmoes!)

Well, in this picture, he kind of looks like him, don't you think?


It's the way his long hair is blowing in the wind, you know. And if you're wondering, that cute little fish was his catch of the night. He'd taken the kids salt water fishing for the first time, and while the Impossible Son caught the biggest fish of the night, and the Impertinent Daughter caught the second largest, the Husbandly One caught... the smallest. And no matter how hard he tried to catch something bigger, for the rest of the week, everything he caught was... pretty much the same size as that cute little Gulf cat in the picture. Heck, for all we know, it was the same fish the entire time, following him all around Rockport and Fulton, throwing itself shamelessly on his hook for one more look at its long haired hero! ♥ ♥ ♥!!

Oh, come on, I had to say it!

I find this an extraordinarily entertaining photo, on so many levels, and I'm proud of the Impertinent Daughter for taking it. She got a good shot of her papa!

I wanted to write more, but I'm just too tired to concentrate. School starts in three weeks, and... I can't wait.

The Last Hurrah...

Thursday, July 14th, 2011 01:49 pm
auntbijou: (Dancing Snape)
In a few minutes, I will leave to run a couple of errands, one of which will be to go to the local theatre to pick up tickets for tonight's midnight showing of "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Pt 2."

As my daughter said this morning, sitting on my bed in shock, "I'm so excited to see it, and yet I'm not because... I'm not ready for it to be over."

We've been following Harry Potter's adventures since she was very, very small. We've laid on the floor with a box of crayons and a huge 18"x 24" tablet of paper in front of us, and drawn Harry, Ron, and Hermione, Hagrid, the blue Ford Anglia flying through the air, Fluffy the three-headed dog, and Professor Dumbledore with pointy toed boots and sparkly purple robes, because Miss Impertinence had gotten glitter sparkle crayons from Aunt Blonde Sister and thought they'd be perfect. We've sewn felt people and made Harry, Snuffles, and Mrs. Weasley with wild curly red hair. We've experimented with making Butterbeer, some of which were awful, and some which were... okay. And when the Impossible Son was born, we tugged him into it, too. We've dressed him up as Harry, and dressed Miss Impertinent as Hermione, and as Luna. We've had Harry Potter birthday cakes and spell battles. We've made up ridiculous spells for very silly things, and we've made a game of looking around when we're in public and spotting people we either think look like the characters in the books, or that we think are secretly witches and wizards slumming it with the Muggles.

In other words, we took the world of Harry Potter and ran with it. And it's been fun!

But... it's sad to see the last movie. Because, according to J. K. Rowling, that's it, there is no more. One can hope she will eventually come around to writing about the next generation of wizards and witches and the challenges they will face, but... that day may be long in coming, or may never come at all.

Still, I'll be leaving to get the tickets. And I'll probably pick up a box of tissues to take with us because... I have a feeling we'll need it.

(no subject)

Saturday, July 9th, 2011 06:43 pm
auntbijou: (Steven Fry LOL)
The Impossible Son just came running into the room with a large Nerf gun in his hands. "This is a hold up," he shouted.

I blinked at him.

"Now... hold something up!!" he said, aiming his Nerf gun at me.

I grabbed my cup and held it aloft, my eyes wide.

"Okay, you're safe," he said, and departed.

Life in my house = never a dull moment!
auntbijou: (Kirk duh what??)
Week Two of Summer Vacation... and I'm about to lose my religion.

Let's see, I'm trying to clean the hog pen that is our living room, a task which always makes me want to strangle my children rather cranky, because it begins to take on Sisyphean proportions. Every time I think I've cured my kids of a bad habit, I find that I haven't. They've just gotten better at concealing it.


Take, for example, the Impossible Son. I think Hercules had it easy, cleaning out the Augean Stables. He should try cleaning under and around the loveseat that Mr. Impossible has claimed as his own. I found... okay, I don't know what it was, I don't want to know what it was, I could live my entire life without ever knowing what that stuff was, and die happy. Seriously. It might have been a thriving civilization, for all I know. If it was, sorry, I destroyed it. I had to. It was going to take over the Earth. That's me, the unsung hero of planet Earth, saving it from being taken over by home made science experiments and penicillin farms.

So, I'm picking up detritus left over from video games, glasses left on the table from yesterday, and I move to pick up some toys next to this old video console we're using to hold DVD's and as I'm standing up, I look between the console and the wall and there are these... things. Lumpy, dark, possibly reddish, possibly purplish, kinda hard to tell... things. And it was hard to tell the color because they were covered in a thick mat of hairy mold. They might have once been strawberries, or... blackberries? I'm not sure, because like I said, I could go my whole life without needing to know. Anyhow, there they are, stuck to the floor, pulsing slightly, looking somewhat malevolent... I'm not quite sure, but... I think they were... looking at me!!

Windex and paper towels. I saved the planet with Windex and paper towels. Yes, I am awesome!!

I'm still seriously grossed out. And yeah, I let Mr. Impossible have it, making him look at the mashed, squished, Windexed remains and said, "There is a garbage can not six feet away!!. There is a compost bucket three feet beyond that!! USE THEM!!! Or seriously, the XBox, the Wii, and the PS2 will go the way of the triceratops. As in BYE BYE!!"

I don't get it, this kid can play an entire game of soccer nonstop, he can run a mile without stopping, he can climb anything, is sometimes so energetic he can't sit still and has to go outside to play... and he can't walk six feet to a garbage can????

Oh, and I'm seriously going to have to call my mother and apologize again. Because I completely understand now why she would go nuts when I'd put music I liked on the stereo and had it blasting away while I cleaned the living room and the bathroom. Because when the Impertinent Daughter puts her music on full blast while she cleans her room, the living room, her bathroom, the kitchen, etc... it drives me up the wall!!! And you know what the worst part is??

We like the same music!!

I mean, how sad is that? She's listening to music that I like... and it's driving me nuts because I can't hear myself think!!

That's it. I am officially old.

Oh, and another thing... I'd better get some serious chocolate out of this. I'm not kidding. Because after I finish scraping that weird sticky stuff off the wood floor in the living room (and no, I don't want to know what that stuff is either), I have to tackle the kitchen and the laundry room.


This is sooooooo going on my bill to Homeland Security. I mean, seriously, I SAVED the PLANET. With Windex. And paper towels.

How many superheroes do you know can do that?

Yeah. That's what I thought!

Excuse me, I need to find the paint scraper. There's a malevolent force of evil I need to scrape off the floor. By the way, have you seen the Windex?
auntbijou: (Angry Chibi Auntie!!)
It was 100 F (37.7 C) at the school down the street from us today, and 101 F (38.3 C) at my son's school.

It's only May 25th!! Jays, this is going to be one scorcher of a summer! It's going to be another triple digit summer like it was two years ago, I just know it. Yay whoopie yay.

Yesterday, when I picked the Impossible Son up from school, he stated most emphatically, "Mom, I never... ever... want to come back to this school... ever... again."

And I thought, "Uh-oh, what happened now?" Because he'd been having bully problems, I'd emailed his teacher and while she didn't reply to me, he had told me things had improved.

Next, he'll want to sell me ocean front property in Arizona... )
auntbijou: (Death)
I wish I was a whiner, because right now, ooooo, I'd be so whiny, everyone would be sick of me!


Okay so... last week, the virus. First Mr. Impossible, then Miss Impertinent, then me. Impossible had it until Wednesday, and went back to school on Thursday. Impertinence got it Monday afternoon and had it until Saturday. I took Impossible in to the doctor on Monday, and Impertinence on Friday. No visit for me because, well... you know how it is. Besides, it was a virus, not much to do but grin and bear it, yeah?

I took the Impertinent One in on Friday though, because we were actually starting to worry, judging by her limp noodleness and the fact she was so damn quiet, that she had... MONO... AGAIN.

*shudders at the thought*

The doctor said, "If you're still feeling like this on Monday, I'll have to run a mono panel on you."

I think she scared the Impertinent Daughter into getting better!

Okay, so... Sunday, it was hot and so the kids invited a couple of friends over and had the Epic Water Balloon Fight of Doom. Somewhere in there, a galvanized tub had been filled with water for splashing purposes, and for some crazy reason known only to another ten year old (and thus not to someone as old as, say, me) the Impossible Son lifted up that tub full of water and lost his grip so that it smashed down on his big toe.


It is nicely purple and swollen. It got iced down and at the time, we thought it was just badly bruised because he could wiggle it and bend it. This, of course, was before he went on a field trip to San Antonio on Monday, and before a kid in his class said, "I don't believe you really hurt your toe," and... stomped on Mr. Impossible's foot.

No, I am not a happy camper. And yes, I am calling the school.

Anyhow, by last night, he was in tears, so, I called our doctor, who has his own X-ray machine, and made an appointment. And got teased about our very frequent appearances. I had to laugh, though, when one of the receptionists told me they were thinking about painting, "Reserved for Auntie's Family" above one of the exam room doors.

I said they should give me frequent flyer miles instead!

So, he was examined and X-rayed, and they'll be sent to a radiologist, but so far, they don't think his toe is broken.

The only thing is... there's only, what, six more weeks of school? And I'm working on something I might actually get paid for, but there's a deadline, and I thought, well, I have all of May to work on it...

*bangs head into wall*

GAAAAAAHHHH!!! And then... and then... and then... the Impertinent One just texted me, "Mom, my throat hurts, can you come get me??"



And the cats are stalking me because I need to buy more cat food, and I desperately need to go grocery shopping, but I can't, because Mr. Impossible is supposed to stay off his foot, and I'M ABOUT TO LOSE MY MIND!!!

I just need time to write, and just... get it done, and hello, universe, please to start cooperating with me? Because I really, really can't take more of this, really. Seriously. Stop it now. Now. Stop it.

*self medicates with chocolate, lots and lots of chocolate*


Monday, April 25th, 2011 07:42 am
auntbijou: (Kirk duh what??)
The Impossible Son woke up with temperature of 100.3, and now it's 101.4!


He just finished the antibiotic for his Ear Infection of Doom on Saturday. And he's got his first TAKS test tomorrow!!!

*tears out hair*

This is the third time in as many weeks!! WTF???? Hello, Universe? STOP IT!! NOW!!

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