Saturday, July 28, 2007

me, Kota

... the gallon of milk is empty, the cats have come out of hiding, the dog has cleaned up the cracker crumbs all over the kitchen floor...the boys must of left!  The boys were here overnight and we had quite a visit.  Dayton is trying very hard to talk, he jabbers nonstop saying, "hey baby" me following me all over the house.  He also is quite the walker.

My stepson Jeremy fishing with Dakota...4/2007

We noticed that the boys can be quite demanding, and being we raised the others with manners and hope that the grand kids would have the same we tried to correct them when the began asking for "Grandma get me some milk" became "Grandma may I, can I have some milk please"--Jacob.  Dakota at 2 1/2 still doesn't use proper nouns, everything is "me want...or me want milk please" or "him want this".  And if you try and correct him..."me, I want"...he'll figure it out.  Their parents have noticed this too and I see them trying to squash this too.  They'll get it...

Dakota's got potty training down so well that we took an hour long walk to the park and no accidents.  Nothing like walking 6 blocks home from the park with a kid with wet pants, which happened to me last summer with Jacob.  It had been a while since I did the potty training thing...I am getting that too.

In my last entry I was talking about Dayton's blanket.  The Christmas Dakota was born Mark was laid off with no unemployment, we were short on money.  My mother was a crafty type so when she died I inherited all her yarn. She had taken baby yarn and made a bunch of squares.  I wanted to give Tracey a part of her so I took the squares finished the blanket and gave it to Dakota for Christmas.  For Jacob I used some of the extra skeins mom had & made a huge blanketfor him.  Well, come to find out years later Traceythought the blanket was hers...she and Jacob actually fought over with making a big boy blanket for Dakota, I am going to make Jacob another blanket.   I am going to teach the girl how to crotchet...then she can make her own!  She did cherish the mom blanket which made me happy.



Jacob and Dakota...4/2007

Since I featured both Jacob and Dayton on my last to entries, I'll share  Dakota...

Such a charmer...6/2007


Thursday, July 26, 2007


Tracey and Jeremy went to see Michael Buble in concert last night.  Tracey loves the guy and Jeremy surprised her with tickets, good ones too.  Mark's ex took Jacob and Dakota to her trailer, she does this when she thinks I've spent too much time with them...but not baby Dayton, so I went out and sat with him.  Liz came with so he got the total Grandma, Aunt La La spoiling treatment.  The kid goes to bed early, so I spent the evening looking through Tracey's downloaded pictures.  I lifted these...

from May, 2007--Dayton

I made this blanket for him when he was born, he will not sleep without it.  It was supposed to be self stripping yarn, but it didn't work for me, it is very soft!  Like grandma!


also from May 2007--Dayton--pre haircut

This is from prom when Tracey did Liz's hair.  Tracey started beauty school Tuesday. 

June/2007--Dayton post haircut

Such a happy baby...

Tomorrow I am going out and picking them up for an overnight...I miss my boys!

Sunday, July 22, 2007

mid summer day

Yesterday my stepson Matt had a 'bag' party.  You know that game where you take homemade bean bags and throw them at a box with a hole in it?  He invited some friends and family and each participating person paid some money and they picked teams and had an all day tournament.  It was fun for me as my dil Brandy is a teacher so some of the guest are teachers too.  Also, Mark and I went to school with many of their friends parents.  Sometimes I forget that I am old and we talk about things we have in common.  Like school, students, their parents and even them!    Matthew (my stepson) never invites his mother to these things...I think she's only been to his home 2 times, but Mark and I are always invited.   I get along with Brandy's parents.  This is a good thing.  Oh and the food was awesome.

Today, I have been pretty much wandering...I do that sometimes when I have nothing better to do.  I did go get milk (the kids will be here this week, and we must have milk!) and noticed that the back to school stuff is out...seems soon to me....then I took the dog for a walk, it's lovely outside...all the rain has really made for a colorful neighborhood.  Oh and I pulled weeds, with the flowers come the weeds.  Oh and the never ending laundry....I have clothes line outside.

Liz drove herself back and forth to work last night...nice thing as she starts at 10 pm and ends at 6 am....after I made sure was home at 6:00 I didn't wake up again until I heard the church bells 9:00!!!   Gotta love the summer....

Here's some pics of  Jacob, he loves his real 4 wheeler that he has had since he was 3.  It is perfectly safe as it only stays in first gear, and it turns off if he falls off.  Daddy made the hills...long pants, a helmet and sturdy shoes are a must.

I am looking forward to spending time with these cuties!


Friday, July 20, 2007

Liz & really I am letting her grow up ;)

Kristin girl friend of my son Tim and Liz

Today Liz and I went to the DMV and she finally got her driver's license.  WHEW!  She tried to get out of it, said she had pink eye or some such thing when she woke up so she had to wear her glasses instead of contacts and then there was the sun, it was making her eyes hurt.  When she took drivers ed in school (which cost $150) her instructor was unable to test her hence the trip to the DMV.  I think drivers ed is up to $300 now, had I known she wouldn't be tested I would have throw a fit.

I had promised my husband that I'd move out if we didn't go see I am having issues....Liz is my last kid, I even had to marry a guy with five kids to get my kid fix.  This year will be the first year in 20 that I do not have a kid going to school, well junior college, but that does not feel like school.  You know school where they do choir programs and you watch sports. I know I know they will have all that at Junior College, but geeeeeez my kid is now an adult....officially!

She passed by the way...she thought she did not...the DMV was a popular spot today.  I even sat with a lady I used to work with, two of her sons were trying to get their licenses too. think of her car insurance!

Mark and I once had three teenage boys driving all at the same time, their dad helped with insurance, but God that was expensive....and I lived through that and I'll live through this too....

Oh yeah, Tracey is going to cosmetology school and I will have the boys on Tuesdays and Thursdays...I guess going full steam ahead into the grandma phase will be just fine by me!  Plus I get to send them home when I am done with them!!!


Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Thankful for you!


A while back I was nominated in a fellow j-lander's journal, her name is Kas and she home schools her children.  She is my hero, she is all the things I wish I had been when I was having babies, I wish I had been bolder back then.  No matter I am a good mom now.  I love reading about her family.  She is a real sweetheart.

Oh horror it was nearly a month ago!  I am so sorry!  But I do feel honored!

Also, I was nominated by Kathy who has a private journal for the Rockin' girl award!

Thank you Thank you!  I totally feel loved in a time of my life where I am going through nothing but CHANGE!

First things first, I have been around J-land for  3 years, I remember my 1st entry, whining about not seeing my grandson Jacob, three years later I am the one who keeps not just Jacob, but his 2 brothers. 

Changes, so many over the years in J-land.

Who can forget when AOL came up with the ads and so many bolted from aol journals.  Many just went private and were never heard from again, or went to another journal space.  I felt hurt, but with change comes new friends.  I have friends here that I value and enjoy keeping up with.  AND THEY ARE YOU ALL!

You all keep me sane, in all this madness...called my life.

I was going to complain about Liz's party, my drunk brother not attending this after my family spend much money and time planning his daughter's wedding, who also did not attend, her excuse was her father in law who had an accident 3 weeks ago.  Truly that was the only blot on what was otherwise a fun day.  My parents best friends came, they made me feel that tie to my past.  All my boys came, Liz had a few friends, but many were at the matinee for one of the plays  held this summer.  Liz's boyfriend Mike is on a mission trip in Georgia, but his mom came and she fit right in with the family.

Liz was happy, so mom's happy!

I was very weepy Monday when I went back to work, then I got in my bus and the driver that subbed for me while I was at court is a sweet lovely lady named Maggie, she actually encouraged me to drive all those 5 years ago.  She left me a little note that said simply, "I miss your smiling face."  I cried.  Sometime when you think the world isn't such a happy place you look and you realize it is, you look for the love, and there it is, right there!

The weather has been awful, rain, storms, and humid...but that's ok.  I have friends and that's what matters!  Thanks for being my friends!

This is an old pic of the boys, but it's adorable




Thursday, July 12, 2007


My county is quite small so child support is only handled one day a week in courtroom 1.

I know the Judge.  I went to high school with him, he was once my son's baseball coach.  I know he would be fair and helpful.  I've been to court many times with Mark and his ex.  I know you  really don't need a lawyer for most things, for sure criminal stuff, but family court if you have half a brain you can do it yourself. 

So off I went knowing full well I would most likely not get any child support, but hoping to at least get some help with college.  I also thought T would not show up, but he did...I know he is still trying to prove himself, but flying from Oklahoma to Illinois is very easy for him as he works for a major airline.  And after Liz's description of him at her meeting I am thinking he's most likely in late stage alcoholism.  It's been 12 years since I saw him last...judging from the mess he's left of wives and kids, not jobs I am surprised, I figured he was still doing what he always did.   If life doesn't beat him down, booze will, and booze is a leave no survivors type of tyrant.

I was right, he looked like crap, smelled like an ash tray, and was sweating.  After listening to the parade of delinquent parents, some in jail, some being threatened jail and one poor lady who was in jail house yellow stood whining about how her boss was there and now he wasn't, and she wanted out!  My buddy the  Judge was having none of it.  He even told one lady get your child support caught up or go across the street (the jail) next time.

Soon we made our appearance and as I figured no child support after high school, but in Illinois pursuant to 750 ILCS 5/513 parents are to contribute to further education of their kids. 

The judge sent us out to discuss the matter.  Again, Mr Compliant asked me what I wanted.  Fortunately for him I am far person, had the college book with me and suggested a number.  We both felt Liz should help pay.  He then agreed to mailing me the money (cashier check) in a lump sum sometime in the next few weeks.  WOW!   He's going to sell some stock from the airline. 

After Junior College we can go back to court to discuss further education.  T also volunteered other grants & scholarships through work when she decided on a University.  And he even told me to keep her as a tax deduction. I should I am paying for her insurance.   He's insurance is horrible.

Then we went back in front of my friend the Judge and told him our agreement.  The Judge and I then made small talk about our children and how they were doing.  God I love living in a small town!   I felt so much better about my parenting skills!  After all my kids played sports with a judge's kid!  ;)

So kids, dealing with a beat down--used to be bully-- face to face isn't so hard.  After further inspection I have come to realize I can be a control freak, BUT it's because I love my family more than anything.  I would fight to the death for anyone I call friend.  After court I even went back to work and found my monitor Julie and told her of my experience.  Her ex owes her a large amount of back child support and doesn't work or sees their three daughters.  I suggested (see I can suggest, not tell) she change courts to here and have the court go after him.  Jail seems to beat a person into compliance or at least getting a legal job.  Although she should keep her same courthouse, it's Cook County near Chicago, I am sure the clientele there are very different than little old Kendall county!

I am getting better though!  I have backed way off on bossing people around and am way more willing to let other learn from their mistakes.  As for the old lady mother in law in Missoula, she's probably forgotten what she said to my sil and will be calling soon demanding to know what we are doing!



Wednesday, July 11, 2007

thank you!

Thank you all so very much for listening to me...yesterday.  I knew my feelings were hurt  in my head. I knew I should should just let this go, but your input helped.  You filled in very well for my mom!

My kid also put some things in perceptive regarding her stepbrothers, she said that they should understand that their dad changed because it was time for him to change, and it took being away from their mother to do it.  She also said that if I wasn't controlling we probably wouldn't have our house or any of the bills paid!  Nice...this kid is wise beyond her years.

Now I am sitting in my home all alone...and I LOVE IT!  My husband has been off work since Monday, we had major storms, but he is going back tomorrow.  YAY!  He is golfing right now with his son who lives here.  Jim loves to golf and gave Mark his old golf clubs, bought him golf shoes for his birthday and now he has a partner.  Good exercise too.

Tomorrow I have a court date to see if the state of Illinois allows the custodial parent to receive child support for their children in college, or at least orders the other parent to pay 1/2 of college.  My boys dad paid half, but he is responsible.  I am not afraid of court, I went many times with Mark and his ex...I even helped him try & get custody of his youngest, this without a lawyer!

Liz's graduation party is Saturday.   We are having it at Jeremy and Tracey's house.  I still have to buy a few things for the picnic.  She wants things simple, which makes me happy.  Liz is working at Target now, overnights, from 10 pm until 6 am.  She has been working 3 days only and they are in a row so she can adjust her sleep.  She's a night owl anyway.  She will have to change this schedule in the fall, but Target wants her on days anyway.  Guess they think she friendly.

I think she's pretty special!




Tuesday, July 10, 2007


God is the only one

who can make

the valley of trouble

a door of hope.

-Catherine Marshall

Like most people I have my quirks, my issues, my character flaws and my past.  Most people who know me think I am a nice enough person.  They invite me to lunch, they confide in me, hell they even trust me with their kids!

So ... why is that all within one week I have been brought to task for being "controlling" or not being fair by four different people??!  Two I can understand they are my stepchildren.  Their dad changed so much when he married me, that I can see how they think I did some sort of voodoo on him and wham he changed...something he did not do when he was married to their mom.  Knowing my husband I have no clue as to why he was with her in the first place.  But I really can't say as my first marriage was with someone I had little in common except which bar to drink at.  And no, he does not think I am controlling either, we get along just fine some 22 years after we divorced.   The next one is Liz's dad...he thinks I kept her unfairly from him.  He has a jaded drug/alcoholic view of the past,  I was controlling as I was protecting my kid, I'd be an awful mother if I just handed her over to him.

The last one was last night, my mother in law who is actually my husband's stepmother called my sil and proceeded to tell her she hated me, and that I am terrible because I wrote Liz's thank you card out, my bad I admit, Liz has bad handwriting, and against my better judgment I even sent her a graduation announcement in the first place as she is very very opinioned and a bit senile.  She also bad mouthed Mark's dead mother, so I shouldn't feel so bad.  My poor sil was bawling her eyes out, because according to the crazy lady all the kids are terrible and never have done anything right.  Their dad has been dead since he's rolling in his grave.

Soooooooo, all this made me want my own Mother who would have listened to me cry, hug me, pat my hand and say..." know this isn't true ... so don't let it bug you"

Maybe I should have my mother in law call T, after all they both love to pick on dead people...he's blamed all his problems on his dead 4th wife!

Thanks for listening I can hear you all say....

"there, there Rose it's all good!"




Sunday, July 8, 2007

birthday boys


"oh grandma...these are clothes!" 

Jacob turned 4 and last Sunday the kids had both he and Dayton's birthday party. 


Future rock stars in the making!  Dakota, who is 2 1/2 calls guitars his Le le...but Sunday you couldn't get him off the drums!

Grandma Rose was cool enough to at least give Jacob a future rocker tee shirt ... with a skull picture on it.

Fortunately for Tracey they have a shed in the yard for the band!  The drums were from the other two grandmas.   Tracey's mom & I gave 'boring' savings bonds and clothes!

The party was fun, not too hot outside, all the kids except my son Eric, who was working, were there.  The biker friends  showed up, but I think they were too hung over from the night before (another 'kid' party) to do burnouts in the street.  Nice thing is they all throw money in an envelope to give to the kiddos.


This birthday boy had too much fun for one day!

Mark's been off since Tuesday, he got some painting done, but it's been hot.   We went to the kid's house Friday and swam.  Yesterday was Mark's birthday, his kids took him golfing and he wanted to stay home last night to watch the race.

Today, pretty much lazy as it's still hot.  Thinking we should head to the pool!



Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Happy 4th





Happy 4th everybody! 

Liz did meet with her father Monday night.  T did not say hardly anything.  His wife did all the talking.  Mostly light stuff.  They did get lost (again...if he had been visiting his kid he'd know where she lived, plus I used to live across the river when he did visit when she was little, which is not far from where they had dinner).  He did pay the bill though.  Least he could do. 

Liz's friend Emily came with & her boyfriend Mike.  The biggest thing T was happy about was that Liz graduated high school, his other kids had not.  GOD!  High school!!!  My oldest graduated from a big ten school.  Liz's aim is to go Columbia in Chicago after a few years at the local Junior College.  We aim high in this family.  

So...hopefully he will still feel guilt ridden and show up next week in court.  Makes my life a whole lot easier. 

On a lighter note the kid's birthday party was fun.  Two of my own kids came with boy/girlfriends.  Eric had to work.  Tim's girlfriend the teacher fits right in.  All my stepsons came including the youngest Dale who is the one who is still mad at my husband, because his mom and dad got divorced when he was 6...he's 20 now.  Years of therapy couldn't help this kid and his resentment.

But we all did speak and hug.  Promises of future meetings were made.  I think he's just partying too much and doesn't want our disapproval.  He's young, he'll learn.

I'll show pics later.

Liz has to work overnights for 3 days including tonight so no fireworks for her, that's ok boyfriend is on vacation.  No fun without boyfriend.

Mark is off until Monday....stinks because it's with no pay, but we'll be ok, work has been slow but steady, with no rain days so it all balances out.

He has 2 gallons of trim paint and we/he is working on painting the house.

Be safe!  And enjoy!