I blame the fact that I've been up to my eyeballs in work, kids, "stuff".
Work...I'm always thankful for that. Being a sub is funny...the first few weeks of the school year you hear nothing. Crickets. Then, about 3 weeks in- BAM. A friend and I were talking about it and we decided it's due to the fact that for the first couple weeks of school, everything is like a new pair of shoes: clean, shiny, happy. Then you get them broken in, maybe spill stuff on them, perhaps step in some poo. The shine wears off, is what I'm saying. And that's when the substitutes get calls. Not that I don't appreciate it, believe me. I'm semi-excited for my next paycheck, which is saying something.
Kids: I'm still giddy with excitement over the terrific year all four of my angels are having. In particular, my William. He's always been the odd man out as far as my kids and schoolwork have gone. I mean, don't get me wrong, there have been many tears shed over some of the other kids' grades, believe me. But in those cases it wasn't a matter of them not understanding the work, it was them not wanting to DO the work. With William, everything always seemed to be more of a struggle. Especially spelling, reading, all of the Language Arts stuff. The other kids, I swear, have never had to study for a spelling test. Really. Not once. They inherited my geek super power of PERFECT SPELLING. Too bad it wasn't something a wee bit more useful but hey, I'll take it. And yes, I am living, breathing proof that those who get the geek super power of PERFECT SPELLING don't always have the sidekick power of PERFECT GRAMMAR. Pffffft.
But now? This year? William is shining. He's doing his homework, and even better? He GETS it! I think part of this can be explained by the teacher he has. The three older kids all had the same teacher, a sweet and lovely woman. But last year, at William's conference, his 5th grade teacher and I talked about maybe putting him in with the lone male 6th grade teacher. I wanted him to have some experience with a guy teacher, partly to get him ready for junior high where the males are more plentiful, and partly because I think it's a good idea for him to have a strong, positive guy role model in his life.
Whatever it is, it's working. But little dude has so much homework...his class is reading the book "Hatchet" by Gary Paulsen, so William and I have been reading it out loud, together, at home, at night, usually in my bed. Which makes me sleepy, which has been totally cutting into my night-time computer activities (and I'm sure people who are friends with me on facebook are totally missing my "witty" late night comments...).
Listen, I've been so busy I haven't been keeping up on my shows! That's the true indicator of my busyness. I did manage to watch American Horror Story on FX last Wednesday night though...yowza. I haven't felt such a creepy mixture of fear and total turned-on-ness like that in a long time. Fear because, HELLO...there are scary dead ginger twin boys, a ghost wearing a shiny latex gimp suit, a tiny scary old lady/kid basement-dwelling demon, and the whole thing has a very distinct "The Shining" vibe about it. The turned on part? Naked Dylan McDermott. Need I say more? I'm going to tune in again tonight and see if it holds up. Oh, and I can't forget two rocking ladies, Jessica Lange and Frances Conroy (the matriarch of the "Six Feet Under" family, love her!!). Jessica brings the funny, believe it or not.
I have renamed Cabin Boy. His new moniker is TeenMan. Because he is a teenager trapped in a 50-something's body. And before I say, "Well, aren't they all?" I'll stop myself because no, they aren't all that way. Just the ones I happen to find myself doing this bizarre, middle-aged mating dance with. He's asked me to come up to his cabin on Saturday. I would have gone up for the whole weekend but Friday night is devoted to my hens. So yes, Saturday will be a blur of shaving, Ped-egging my heels, tweezing in the magnifying mirror, driving and hopefully, fun. I'm going to make him watch Bridesmaids with me, and have requested that he has the makings for dirty martinis on hand. It's supposed to be a beautiful, perfect fall day in Wisconsin this weekend. I'm hoping it's just as nice inside. If you get what I mean, hardy-har-har. I'll keep you posted.
My book: can we talk? I had this beautiful, gauzy vision of what this fall was going to be like: kids in school, me having a few days during the week where I could just sit and whip out a book, one chapter at a time. In reality? I scrapped the first several chapters I'd started a while back, and now find myself staring at the blank screen with a vacant expression on my face. I'll get these bursts of inspiration, where actual paragraphs form in my head and I'll think to myself, "Self! Get that written down!" but then something will happen, like work or kids or "stuff" and whatever fabulous prose was in my head just up and disappears. I still have a few people to talk to, also, and will be getting on that SOON. Now I feel like there are two books I want to do: a collection of short stories, essays about what women have done when their husbands leave. And then the fiction one, which is slowly turning into more of a "Jenny Memoir", which is basically what this blog is. So yeah. I'm thinking it might be time for me to go back on Adderall.
And one more thing: lately I have been hankering to go back to school. I was all set to go back, right before Big Daddy stopped paying everything. Like, had applications ready to go, everything. But then, of course, I had to put everything on hold. And now the feeling is back again. Only this time I don't have any idea how I'll do it. I have some amazing friends who have gone back/are going back (yes, YOU, Amanda, you ROCK!) but it seems like none of them have the responsibilities that I do. I have to work, because I'm the sole breadwinner for my family. I don't know how on earth I can do it, how I can add one more thing to my already too-full plate. But I really, really want to go back. Where there's a will, there's a way, I suppose, but dammit. I really wish I had either a husband or a winning lottery ticket. That would make life so much easier. Well, the lottery ticket would.
On that note, I bid you a fond farewell. Time to go to work, and by work I swear I don't mean play "Words with Friends".