Tag Archives: my family

‘the keeper’

Sometimes when we read someone else’s words they hit you deep down in your guts directly to your soul, these words did exactly that.  They paused me.  They made me remember my job, “the keeper

I had bracelets made for both my kids, I wear my sons, one day I’ll give it to him but for know I am the keeper of the message “ain’t no mountain high, no valley low” the song I played them so much during a very hard time in our lives, the divorce.  We are years passed that now, however, old wounds die hard and long sometimes so it is just a reminder that through it all, good and bad, they could always count on their keeper

It certainly is the little things that we know to keep this lil sailboat  sailing like a Viking battleship ​

One of our silly videos to fully embraced our motto ​



“I am the keeper.

I am the keeper of schedules. Of practices, games, and lessons. Of projects, parties, and dinners. Of appointments and homework assignments. 

I am the keeper of information. Who needs food 5 minutes before a meltdown occurs and who needs space when he gets angry. Whether there are clean clothes, whether bills are paid, and whether we are out of milk. 

I am the keeper of solutions. Of bandaids and sewing kits and snacks in my purse. But also of emotional balms and metaphorical security blankets. 

I am the keeper of preferences. Of likes and dislikes. Of nightly rituals and food aversions. 

I am the keeper of reminders. To be kind, to pick up their trash, to do their dishes, to do their homework, to hold open doors and write thank you notes.

I am the keeper of rituals and memories. Of pumpkin patches and Easter egg hunts. I am the taker of pictures, the collector of special ornaments, and the writer of letters. 

I am the keeper of emotional security. The repository of comfort, the navigator of bad moods, the holder of secrets and the soother of fears. 

I am the keeper of the peace. The mediator of fights, the arbiter of disputes, the facilitator of language, the handler of differing personalities.

I am the keeper of worry. Theirs and my own. 

I am the keeper of the good and the bad, the big and the small, the beautiful and the hard. 

Most of the time, the weight of these things I keep resembles the upper elements on the periodic table – lighter than air, buoying me with a sense of purpose.

But sometimes the weight of the things I keep pulls me down below the surface until I am kicking and struggling to break the surface and gasp for breath.

Because these things I keep are constantly flickering in the back of my brain, waiting to be forgotten. They scatter my thoughts and keep me awake long past my bedtime.

Because all these things I keep are invisible, intangible. They go unnoticed and unacknowledged until they are missed. They are not graded or peer reviewed or ruled on by a court. And sometimes they are taken for granted. 

My husband and my boys are kind and generous and they love me hard. And this is by far the greatest job I have ever had. But sometimes being the Keeper is exhausting. Because you feel like you’re doing it alone. 

So to all of you who are keepers, I see you. 

I know the weight of the things you keep. 

I know the invisible work you do, which doesn’t come with a pay check or sick leave, is what makes the world go round. 

I see you.

And I salute you.”

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Credit: Lucky Orange Pants


Who lives in a pineapple under the sea?  

Walking in the store yesterday with thing 2 looking for food for her math project, we see that cake mix.  Immediately we think of our dog and the murdering of smurfs in my kitchen when he are the blue cake mixes.  I asked Thing 2 what would murdered thing would this cake mix look like when our dog ate this one??   When she answered me, I truly had a “LOL” moment, she surprised me and I almost bought it for the pure fact that she said SpongeBob!  I dislike SpongeBob so much that I actually thought of satisfaction feeding it to my horse dog and imagining SpongeBob murdered  because I got to feed him to my dog and never hear that laugh again …YAY ME!  

Oh lord, then I remembered the giant maybe 2 and half foot tall SpongeBob plush toy stuffed with styrofoam beads  my son won for doing well on a fundraiser, wait, that  I WON for doing  so well  on that fundraiser when he was in about 1st grade.  

Which then led to the gigantic, maybe 3 ft tall stuffed ogre Shrek plush thing stuffed with cotton one of them got from someone, I have no idea who. 

There is a point here… maybe be a little irony as well.  

During just one of the umpteen wretched moments of my divorce, both kids saw his awful behavior once too many times  and got extremely angry.  They took it upon themselves to take their anger out on and blame SpongeBob and Shrek big plush toys and all the stuffing inside them….

What in Gods name are you doing in your room guys?  Sounds like screaming bloody murder and crazy laughing???   

So nonchalantly, almost boastful and prideful from 9 year old. 

….we murdered Shrek, he’s dead….

then the six year old, voice almost excited and eyes gleaming …

…and SpongeBob is too Mummy!!! 

 So, my thinking the dog murdered smurfs and could possibly “taking out” SpongeBob seemed kinda fitting….

Welp, sure am glad we all worked past that one!  

One of those days…

I actually realized it was Friday at about 2:30 pm  today….  I am not quite fairing well with my father so ill.   I haven’t quite known if I was coming or going since Thansgiving.  Christmas with my family was absolutely wonderful, we haven’t been ALL together in so long.  I think we even tolerated my brothers girlfriend kinda well.  Poor girl just has no clue. 

Thanksgiving, birthday, Christmas, birthday, New Years, it came and went so fast.  Here Valentines Day tomorrow and I realized it was Friday as my kids got home from school.  My dad in the hospital over a month now, I haven’t had a normal nights sleep since I don’t know when.  I started a blog, not this one a different one, back in October just so I can sort out and remember all that’s happening.   Since Thanksgiving I haven’t been up to even say “good mornin! Have a fabulous day at school ” to my kids.  I haven’t been able to sleep, the thoughts of what’s going on haunt me, we know these days are coming but waking up to them 50 times a night is just no damn fun.  Getting up at 6 am was never my forte, good lord no, I am simply not good at that, everyone knows it, including myself.  Well, now it’s damn near impossible.  I’m thankful, grateful and pretty damn blessed he takes care of mornings here or my kids would not get to school, ever.  Everyday after school, when I am actually not in a coma like sleep, I gab with them to do the mental check of everyone’s well being and from then til after dinner when they disembark family for homework, from hitting the threshold  after school to homework time,  I do bug the crap out of them.  One cooks with me while one complains he is unable to open a can of ravioli and stands to watch our chaos  Music plays, we act silly and dance like goofballs, even the dogs get into our shinaniggins and everything seems just our kind of normal. 

Who cares if I even know the day, I’m just thankful I have someone to look after me while I am looking after everyone else.  I am grateful and blessed to have this wonderful man bugging me like I bug the hell out of my kids.  Taking me to a hospital daily to deliver food to my momma so she eats, running in and out of a hospital what seems all day long (but it isn’t, it’s just stressful is why it seems this way, we all know it)  checking tires, checking electronic devises, whatever is asked, he does it, no questions.  He knows what is important to our family and he acts accordingly, his opinion is valued, even his advice is listened to, and the tough words a kid needs to say to a sick dad and exhausted momma-. he gets elected because the respect goes both ways around us.  He is completely in charge but not in charge at all.  We have learned very big lessons from our first marriages and are able to share the “in charge”  title quite well.  Does it matter I didn’t know it was Friday really?  No not at all, he knew it was, he knew my list was long once again and pointed me in all the directions I needed to go.  Does it matter to him that I have yet to get Valentines?  No, because I actually already did, he just doesn’t know it yet.  Do I expect a gift?   I can absolutely say no I do not, I get whatever I want when I mention things and I soon forget that I even mentioned it until he surprises me with whatever it is.  I don’t know that I know a more thoughtful man besides my dad ….means someone raised this feller right, perhaps  I should marry him, again and again.  My heart feels love everyday, even if I think it’s Wednesday but actually it’s now almost Saturday.. Happy Valentines Day, now take me to bed or lose me forever… 



The House that Jack Built

My mom said something that struck me today, and so did my sister.  I truly want them both to know that there is not ever a reason to thank us for anything, not ever, not me or Troy.  It is extremely hard I know for my brother and sister to be living so far away from my parents and my texting them & sending pictures or whatever is not me doing anything out of the ordinary, they would do this for me and I know it, i do not ever doubt that,  our family is too wonderfully & weirdly close to leave anyone hanging like that.

My phone rang this am and I wasn’t even awake yet.  I haven’t slept well since this began in October, when I do sleep, it is like a coma I hear nothing at all.  That’s not good. .  So I kinda gather myself here and get a text from Sis. We are trying to plan out how this all is going to work moving my dad to physical therapy rehab facility. Then my mom calls saying the meeting at the aftercare place went well and she will give me a heads up call to meet them there when my dad arrives about one.

Sitting with only needing my shoes on waiting on the call to arms from my mom to help make this move as smooth as we could, that was not out of the ordinary just like my sister calling straight away, so very quickly for replacement parts for his vest therapy thingy and getting them overnighted.  When her number pops up earlier than scheduled, she conveys my dad wants Troy and I at the hospital to help my mom move his numerous machines (sleep apnea thingy & the $17,000 vest thingy that helps him cough)

Change of plan,  what Dad says, we do, it’s pretty much that simple.

I don’t think she realizes how concerned he is about her and making sure she is okay too.  They were both very nervous about doing this and no amount of hearing “He will be fine” was simply not going to cut it today I don’t care what anyone says, that wasn’t going to help.  Dad knew that too, After almost a month in the hospital, he’s weak and when things go wrong in my family, 9 times out of 10 it goes haywire, screwy, no one believes that could happen kind of wrong. I swear I’m not kidding.  From my dad carrying a box and something falls out while trying to save it, he drops the box and ends up with 16 stitches I think, down his shin.  My dog deciding to dive into the pool while I was underwater and landing right on me, and slicing my eyelid open with her claw in the process and I’m home alone, in my bikini needing stitches.     Or hopping the fence as a kid and missing enough that the top of the fence spears my thigh and ruined my new Jordache or Cakvin Klein jeans, not to mention being stuck on the fence.  The garage door being closed on your head, my dad thought I wasn’t so close it would clear me,  whoops!  Or your x husband leaving a cubbard door open and you walking directly into it and knocking  yourself unconscious,  waking up my kids scared & crying and having no clue what’s happening, again needing stitches.  I think the scariest one was at six or seven my mom making me wear this ridiculous dress to school and all I did was fuss and complain and  by George promise her that  I was going to ruin it so I never ever had to wear it again. After school while goofing  with my friends between ours and our neighbors houses well,  I lose my footing and did a superman into their chimney.  With a gigantic gash bleeding like crazy on my face,  I find my parents in the kitchen so  I announce pretty loudly almost happily, “I won’t have to wear this dress again, I ruined it”. My parents about passed out as the turned to me in the kitchen, in complete shock, I had blood everywhere like i had severed an artery.  I wasn’t scared until my mom shrieked!  Guess what?  A whole lot of stitches that time!

So when it goes wrong, trust me, it really goes wrong in my family and it’s usually me and my dad this crazy stuff happens to!

So as my mom is telling me my dad wants us there,  I was already moving, the mission had began:

1) shoes  2) brush teeth  3) bathroom.

Then I’ll be on my way Mom

I motioned Troy, he knew it was time so as I hit  #3 on that short list my mom says “Dont Rush. Oh no, what about your kids? After school?”  “Mom, they know what to do, they have a key, we told them yesterday what was going on”.  Her response was “You are a good kid thank you” To which I said,  ” thanks is not needed, I’m no different than my brother or sister, you guys taught us right the first time, my kids know what to do but so do your kids, we are on our way now, 20 minutes tops” maybe not verbatim but pretty darn close.

I love my family fiercely and would walk thru fire for them.  I found myself telling Troy thank you for helping keep everyone calm, his strong presence I know helped me as we were outside waiting and I kinda sighed and put my head on his chest, he hugged me and truth be told, I needed that I felt safe, that everything is gonna be alright’ moment, like when my dad said when I gashed open  my eye, leg and my head, ‘everything will be alright, I got you!”            I am so grateful he was there.   This has been anything but easy.  He looked at me straight in the eye and said ‘why would you even say thank you?’  I am here for you.” Well, fact of the matter is some people aren’t even if they say they will be there but get annoyed or mad  if anyone actually asks for help. I know he is there and don’t ever leave me hung out to dry or throw me under any bus, I wouldn’t do it to him either.

When it comes to loved ones, family and close knit friends, my parents taught us well, I have not ever forgetton that, if I did,  that would be more than disrespectful to both of my parents and they are such caring and loving people who did nothing but show love to us always.  My dad has thrown us many of his goofy faces that have that “WTH?” look (he’s good at it!), he has said many many times “You  need to act like you have some damn sense!” “If you want to go out and stay out all night, fine but if you can’t get up the next day and do what you said you’d do, I would suggest you don’t stay out all night there missy!”  I think i could actually write a book on “Jack’s quotes, simplistic yet profound words of wisdom”

Now listen to me, young lady, mom bought you a new pair of penny loafers, now  people put pennies in them for luck, I’m putting quarters  and you will wear them whenever you go out, and I won’t ever have to hear again:  “I didn’t have any money to call and say I’m going to be late dad’  You can call twice!

All I could think was ….gee thanks Dad!  I’m wasnt ever late again, I had absoluteltly no desire to ever need those quarters or a pay phone.

Yes, my mom has called me by my first, middle & last name, more than once, it rolled out well from her mouth and stopped us dead in our tracks  just like it works for every other mother in this world.  She’s wanted to throttle my neck, whatever that actually means, she’s said it.  “do I have to get a switch?”  Holy crao no you don’t need to get a switch!!   I’ve never seen a switch in action, but my parents stories scarred the mortal hell out of me since I was 4!!  No damn switches!!

So yes, we had ‘bad kid’ moments but overall we all were good kids.  When it comes right down to it all, honesty, I should thank my parents for raising us right. My own children should as well.  They should be happy as la lark that I’ve not ever said “do I need to get a switch?” Scariest sentences in this whole wide world!!

Troy is a part of us now, stuck like glue Mister, They say you can’t get out of death and taxes, well, best add ‘the family’ to that list, and strap in because I’m not letting go and I’ll tell you this:  you will always know you are loved, no question in that AND the other thing you can plan on is that it won’t ever be boring, not ever, no, we do not understand that word at all in this family.

Oh, and  by the way, my daughter inherited the knack we have for getting hurt and my son wasn’t left out, oh no. he  has bizarre things happen to him too… It’s all in the family, one for all and all for one, I guess that makes us The 8 Musketeers in the house that Jack built.