Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Entitlement Complex

I used to have an entitlement complex. Hey -- I AM the baby of the family. Growing up, I got most everything that I wanted. When I moved out, if I needed money, Mama and Daddy were there, no questions asked. I had credit cards, I paid time on vehicles, a house, you name it. I got loans from high interest companies, I filed bankruptcy. I have been there.

The American Society breeds the entitlement complex. Every generation says, "I want my children to have better than I did." This is a noble statement, but it is also a misguided statement in many ways.

Mama and Daddy are always there for me -- they take care of my children (for free). If my car is in the shop, they give up theirs for me to use. They sacrifice themselves for me a 40 year old adult woman. But, I do NOT take it for granted, I do my best NOT to impose, I pay for their cell phone, I do for them also.

To have better than I did usually refers to things, toys, privileges, money, houses, status. But, it should mean to have a better understanding of life, to have a knowledge of how to manage themselves in society, to balance a checkbook, to have responsibilities, to teach them to grow up. I find it a whole lot easier with my three to give them things than to give them the moral ideals needed to accept responsibility. It is a daily effort.

My grandfather raised four children through the depression. He worked for less than $1.00 a day. His children love his memory dearly. He woke before the sun rose, he literally slaved until sundown. He did not use the excuse of I can't because I need to spend a lot of time with my children in the evenings. He instilled a better life in their minds, they learned his work ethic.

My Daddy has always worked, he worked for years and years in a factory that he hated. But, even though he hated it he knew his responsibility was to his family, his wife and his children to provide for them. We never went hungry, we never were cold or left in the dark. My father would get up early and feed animals, do chores before leaving for work. When he got home he worked he gardened, he mowed, he fixed the vehicles. Yes, he was an alcoholic but no substance abuse EVER caused us to do without.

Our mother worked hard too, she worked, she got up early straightened up the house, and when we got home she cooked us a meal, cleaned the kitchen, helped us with our homework. They gave us what their parents didn't give them in the way of physical things. We now start to see the entitlement complex starting in society.

I am a generation older than my husband. My sister is a generation older than I. My sister is ashamed to ask Mama and Daddy for help. She feels guilty when she borrows and works hard to repay her debts. I ask for help as a last resort to the point of overextending myself on credit. Sis and I get up every morning, many times in pain, and go to work yet in my case -- I don't spend a penny on ME. She until recently did NOT put herself first. But my husbands generation -- says, Mine, ME, ME, ME, ME. He works hard NOW, but it took him until the age of 30 to hold a steady job. He gets a raise and comments -- well you budgeted on my old salary, so I get the rest? NO.

As parents, adults, a family -- the money doesn't belong to the individual, it belongs to the family. As Dave Ramsey says, "You take care of the four walls first." This is the house, the utilities, the food, the necessities. As adults we don't expect others to take care of us. But, I have seen the entitled generation do so many things that are ungodly and immoral when it comes to money management and entitlement. "Sticking it to the man."
  • I worked at a University and students would ask how much extra financial aid can I get, I want to buy a car. The government would pay for their child care. They would play the game.
  • I paid full price for duplex rent, the girl next door was on Section 8 and her boyfriend lived with her making twice as much money as I. They were proud of their "beating the system."
  • I know people who get on disability and still work jobs on the side, people who cheat the taxpayers.
  • My husband works with a guy who buys people's food stamp money for .50 cents on the dollar. I spend $400 a month for a family of five on groceries and here are people cheating the government. My kids eat hotdogs and bologna, I make $50k a year and the abusers of the system eat steaks.
  • A friend of my husband (before the bankruptcy law changed) made the comment that he was going to get all of the credit cards that he could and run them up...then just file bankruptcy on them. Smart huh? NO.
  • My husband used to only want to work for cash, to avoid a 1099, he didn't want to give any of the money to the government, he wanted it ALL.
  • My husband has another friend that is an alcoholic, he has two children and another on the way, he lives with his mom and dad. He can't hold a job. He expects his parents to bail him out. He expects his mom to change her schedule to watch his kids. He expects them to cater to his needs and to heck with his parents needs.
All of these are classic examples of an entitlement complex. I think it is classically called a narcissistic personality. That in itself is a whole other post.

To our youth -- we must remember to teach them and they must remember the following:

The government owes us NOTHING. Our parents owe us NOTHING. But we OWE it to ourselves and our ancestors legacy, we OWE it to our children to stand on our own feet, to be accountable for our own actions, to grow up, and we OWE it to our Lord who expects us to be wise stewards of those talents that he has given to us. It is time to stop feeling as though you are entitled and to take care of your responsibilities.

In other words -- you got yourself in this mess -- now get yourself out of it.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007


Kids not only say the darndest things, but they also ask the darndest things.

Last week -- these are the some of the things
that I had to explain.

Explanation #1

DD1 "Mommy what is the worst word that you can say?" (7 years old)
Me "Hate. You should never ever say that you hate someone."
DD2 "Mommy I thought it was the F word." (5 years old)
Me "Yes, that is a very bad word but hate and anything taking God's name in vain is worst."
DD1 "What is the F word?"
DD2 "Fuck"
DD1 "Ohhh -- so hate is worst than fuck."
DD2 "Mommy, what does fuck mean."
Me "Now girls stop saying the word fuck. It is a word that is used when you are talking about something a man and woman do. It is an adult word and it is very bad manners to use the word and makes a lot of people feel uneasy when they hear it. So we shouldn't use it."
DD2 "But it's not as bad as hate?"
Me "Hate is a very mean word."
Explanation #2

DD2 "Mommy, Daddy is the S word a bad word?"
Dad "Yes, shit is a bad word."
DD2 "No Daddy not shit, the other S word."
Me Thinking hard, "What other S word?"
DD2 Quietly, "Stupid"
Dad "No."
Me "No but it is not a nice word when you say it and are talking about another person."
DD2 "Oh, OK F**** said the word stupid."
Dad "Tattletale."
Explanation #3

Preface: We attended the Gospel Meeting at church (revival). The preacher made the statement that we are not to love this world or the things in it. The seven year old was listening. When putting her to bed this is how it went:

DD1 "Mommy, why aren't we to love the world? What did he mean? I thought we were supposed to love everyone."
Me "He didn't mean that we aren't to love the people of the world."
DD1 "But he said..."
Me "Let me see... hmmmm. Okay -- you like to go to your friends' house but you always come home. You love being home. Well, we are to want to go to heaven and not love this world so much that we like it more than wanting to go to heaven."
DD1 "Mommy, in school they teach us to love the world and to reduce, reuse, and recycle."
Me "God made the world, it is our job to take care of it. We take care of it because we love God, but the preacher was talking about loving what are called "worldly" things, things that God doesn't like us doing, like stealing or lying."
DD1 "Well I love this world and the people."
Me "I am proud of you, but you love God more and want to please God, right?"
DD1 "uh-huh"
DD2 "Mommy, I love you as much as God."
Me "Thank you. Now let's go to sleep."

I told the preacher about it and he snickered and said oops sorry, but glad that I understood what he was saying and let her know that he was proud of her for listening.

Excuse This House

Author: Unknown

Some houses try to hide the fact
That children shelter there,
Ours boasts it quite openly,
The signs are everywhere.

For smears are on the windows,
Little smudges are on the doors
I should apologize, I guess
For toys strew on the floor.

But I sat down with my child
And we played and laughed and read
And if the doorbell doesn’t shine,
His eyes will shine instead.

For when at times I’m forced to choose
The one job or the other,
I’d like to cook and clean and scrub,
But first I’ll be a mother.

Monday, May 21, 2007

News and Views

My TMMO Progress

Confession time: I blew it on F****'s birthday party. Spent way too much money and robbed the emergency fund. I can rebuild it by the end of June if all goes well and still pay the next snowball.

Good news though: Another snowball thrown -- Here's the progress so far. A new snowball sneaked in -- I forgot all about a Student Loan at a private college. Hopefully I will be able to negotiate them down.

Doin' the Crawl -Arrears Caught Up - DONE - $1,761.86 - 2/9/2007
Baby Step 1 - Replenishing -- to be done by 6/30/2007
Baby Step 2 - 11 SNOWBALLS left to throw
Snowball 1 - $413.00 - Thrown 2/16/07 - Legal Fees
Snowball 2 - $167.04 - Thrown 2/23/07 - Medical Bills
Snowball 3 - $242.73 - Thrown 3/15/07 - CapOne - CC1
Snowball 4 - $300.00 - Thrown 4/12/07 - Pinnacle Finance (negotiated down from $533)
Snowball 5 - $300.00 - Thrown 5/21/07 - Father in Law loan paid back

The next one is another Capital One Credit Card -- balance is now $262.36 to be paid 6/15/2006 which will eliminate another monthly payment. Those $15.00 minimum payments add up and add back in when paid off. Every little bit helps.

We are learning to look at what we spend and to manage our money instead of it managing to get us into trouble. We have a weekly ritual with grocery shopping -- the kids and the hubby seem to like the MENU. I create a weekly menu based upon their food requests and ONLY purchase at the grocery store what I NEED to make those meals. I don't shop the circulars, I don't look for bargains, I don't play the store's marketing game. I buy what we NEED. This week groceries for our family of 5 cost $108.01 including a 50 pound bag of dog food, cat food and diapers. Not bad if I say so myself. My best week so far was $86.00. Before doing the menu -- I was averaging $140.00 each week not including the eating out.
Getting to Know You

J**** is a recovering alcohol/drug addict. He has either drank or done some sort of drug the entire time that I have known him up until his sobriety on 12/13/2006. He admits and I admit to him also that we really do NOT know each other with him clean and sober. We have always had a third partner of some sort in our relationship - addiction. A clean and sober individual is different than a person under some sort of influence. An enabling partner (me) is always reacting or preparing for dealing with the beast that is the addict.

The new J**** is also confused. I am not as "hands on" now that he is clean. I don't constantly attend to his needs or need to keep track of his "comings and goings." We are getting to know each other in a new light and it scares both of us. At times he gets a little grouchy -- which I understand from Sober Steve's post is normal. I think he called it King Baby syndrome. I am the epitome of the Queen Baby -- nothing is ever my fault and I think that J**** is seeing through my facade and realizing "Hey - she's not near as perfect as she or I think she is...hmmm." Yep, I'm really fallible and I can hide it really good.

This is a new adventure for the two of us -- an exhilarating and frightening adventure. It's like we are adults or something -- and honestly -- neither one of us are crazy about growing up.
Bragging Rights

Not only can I brag on my children, but I can brag on my siblings too.

My sister (read her blog at A Real Life Soap Opera) is incredible.
  • She has made a personal goal to lose weight and has joined Weight Watchers for support. She has lost 26.8 pounds this year. That is phenomenal.
  • She is making a life for herself and went to see the Amish country this past weekend. She and I saw irony in the fact that the Amish don't do electricity or cars BUT they have a website.
  • She loves her children and grandbabies dearly and sacrifices herself for their welfare.
  • She is up for a major promotion at work where she will have the opportunity to travel, something that she is very excited about. I am soooo happy for her.
I love you Big Sissy.
Teacher Let the Monkeys Out

This is the last week of school. Things are hopefully going to calm down. I just finished working on the June calendar -- we may actually have a weekend or two for just us. I miss my kids, I'm very selfish when it comes to them. I love to be with them. Summertime -- Yeeehaw.

Until next time -- God Bless.

My Miracle

Believe it -- I was told that I couldn't have children by a respected fertility doctor / gynecologist. I was told that I had a hormonal imbalance that would stop me from having children. I read and read and read and I read that the heavier a woman is the more testosterone they make. I was overweight.

I divorced my first husband -- they say the best diet to go through is a divorce. I lost a LOT of weight.

I met J****, my booty call guy and whoops I was pregnant. I took a pregnancy test and a miracle happened -- I was pregnant.

On May 22 - one day before my due date -- my miracle was born.

Check out my Flickr photos to see the Luau birthday party that we had today.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Tale of a Day at the Zoo

Our middle child in kindergarten, went to the zoo with her class.

This is what she came home and told us that she did.
  1. She saw a giraffe running.
  2. She got to pet the giraffe.
  3. She saw a lion, and an antelope, and a chimpanzee.
  4. She saw a poisonous snake and you couldn't tap on the glass or it would hit it's head on glass and hurt itself.
  5. She saw a big hairy spider and it got out of its cage, she picked it up and put it back.
  6. She rode a rhinocerous.
  7. She saw a baby elephant and it was this small (she held her hands about a foot off the ground), but the mommy was as big as ten daddies.
  8. She saw a panther and it wanted to follow her so it jumped the fence and went with her through the zoo all day.
  9. She saw penguins and it smelled really bad in there.
  10. She saw a baby tiger, it was white and she got to pet and feed it. The food looked like dog food.
  11. She saw a boa constrictor and he was green with black spots, she got to hold him, he was smooth.
  12. Mommy forgot to pack her a lunch, so the school gave her a lunch with a ham sandwich, cheetos, and jelly candy. It was real good especially the jelly candy.
  13. Someone had to carry her, because she was supposed to wear her tennis shoes and had on flip flops.
  14. She went through the rain forest and got wet.
  15. She had a good time.
She has a great imagination and had a wonderful day. Things had been hectic -- so Mommy forgot that she was even going to the zoo. I am so thankful for wonderful kindergarten teachers, that help me take care of her.

Cool thing that they do at her school -- the parents provide white t-shirts and the t-shirts are all painted exactly alike. That way they can keep better track of our babies. That is a great idea.

Oh yeah -- she said they all fell asleep on the bus trip back to the school and had to be woke up.

Got to love those field trips.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

You've Come A Long Way Baby

I'm 40 today.

Here's how far we have come in one year. Below is my journal entry from last year. Comments in Orange.

May 12, 2006

Happy Birthday to me…

J**** brought diapers to the house for D***** last night. (We were broke, I had no money in the bank account -- we now have an emergency fund and a budget.) He showed up around 8:45 pm while I was putting the children to bed. They were so excited to see him. He told them a story and sang to them and tickled them and yes, he was on the road to being drunk. (J**** has been clean and sober for 150 days today, 5 months tomorrow) I fell asleep putting them to sleep and he came upstairs and woke me up. We talked and he was belligerent and aggravating. He didn’t want to stay at the house and wanted to leave, but he still wanted to kiss me goodbye. He told me during the conversation that he’d drink alcohol if he wanted and wouldn’t stop. Not for me, not for the kids, not for anyone. (He did it for himself, he was about to lose everything.)

He left and went back to A*****’s house. I went to bed.

F**** woke up in the middle of the night and was angry because I wasn’t sleeping with her. She is starting to get an attitude; (attitude is still there - she's in that stage I think) she is dealing with a lot of anger lately. I think she is very smart and she knows that things are bad. When J**** came in last night – shame on us, we yelled in front of the kids and they scolded us, mainly me. (J**** still yells, we still argue -- but all parents argue, our arguments however are no longer verbally violent ones, but petty everyday arguments.)

When she woke up, we talked about Daddy having to leave because of the alcohol. She told me that Daddy lies to her about stopping and about his drinking. She sobbed and sobbed and sobbed when I told her that Daddy would be leaving us soon.

She is having anger issues right now and expressing them toward me. We’re going to have to go and have a mother/daughter day out.

Am I doing what is right? They love their Daddy so much. When he walked through their bedroom door (even though he was drunk) their little eyes lit up. They were so happy that he was home.

What am I putting them through? Is it worse to live with alcohol or to live without a father? (I'm thankful to God and J**** for making the choice for me, and that was to take the choice away. Prayer really does work, folks.) What a mess.

I’m 39 today (now I'm 40 and things are a lot better) and this is not what I thought I’d be dealing with on this birthday. The lawyer just called and he is going to file the orders for temporary custody, child support, and exclusive occupancy of the home.

Things are much better now, of course not perfect - no home is perfect. We are both still growing and the kids are still having growing pains of their own. I'm so proud of what he has accomplished this year - clean, sober, occasional church attendance, a full time job, taking on more responsibilities. Yeah -- I could still fuss and nag about stuff, but what wife can't?

All in all -- today was an uneventful birthday, but birthdays have never been a big deal to me. I always thought the mother should be celebrated on the child's birthday, she went through labor and carried them up to nine months. I cleaned (real cleaning) part of the house, J**** went out and brought us back our supper -- ribeyes yum, yum. I got cute stuff from the kids. I made myself a birthday cake last night (german chocolate - yum, yum) well, D***** and I made it. Everybody called me that always remembers. Brother will remember in a day or two -- that's just the way he is, always late. Sis came over to see me and brought me a pretty necklace and earrings. I bought myself a new bra - another uplifting thing.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Getting it ALL off my chest...

I'm going to be forty on Saturday -- so, I'm going to be whiney. I earned it.

Here goes...


Everyone looks at me and thinks I have it all together. Well, I don't. I am so in over my head it is not funny. People comment, "I don't see how you do it, you work, you have three kids, you fix them supper, their hair is combed, you run the church website, you teach a Bible class..." blah, blah, blah. Well truth is...I stay up to 1:00 or 2:00 in the morning, just trying to stay caught up. My house is extremely messy-can't blame it all on kids, it's the one thing that I just have to let go. Something had to give and it is a clean house. J**** works third shift, so in the evenings he needs a little extra sleep and I become the only parent. I'm not complaining -- I'm proud of his progress and I am glad to give him that opportunity, but..

Trip to the E.R.

...sometimes things falls through the cracks. J**** mowed the yard and left the gas can out. We forgot to lock the backyard gate. I was doing homework with the girls and not paying close attention to the boy. He thought he was being a big boy and pulled the gas can down, it tipped over and spilled over his head and in his eyes. D***** and I rushed to the E.R. He cried, I cried, J**** and I played the blame game for a bit then said -- hey, it was an accident, thankfully the boy is okay. It was so pitiful. He held me and the gas got on my face -- it burned. I could only think how bad it must be hurting him. Trying to pay attention to all three...D*****'s safety fell through the cracks.

I'm too Fat

My B.M.I. is 36.
  • Underweight = <18.5
  • Normal weight = 18.5-24.9
  • Overweight = 25-29.9
  • Obesity = BMI of 30 or greater
Enough said on that topic.

Burned Out

I love my job, but I am bored. B-O-R-E-D. I understand that since I miss a lot of work ( they are very understanding) it is hard to assign me the big tasks. With three young children you miss a lot. This week -- I missed Monday due to D**** having a tummy bug and 1/2 day today with the eye doctor thing. But, I am capable of so much more. A few months back I was working on a project -- I found a way of resolving a need we were having. I asked if we had access to a specific type of server. No we didn't. I researched how much it would cost. It was a lot of money and I was told that we couldn't get the money for that. A while later the V.P. asked the same question -- why yes, we would get right on it. The V.P. can find money for anything he wants. I had mentioned several times I would like it to be my project before this and that I would like to learn the technology. The project was given to someone else, I was disappointed. But, I am happy to have a good job. I just need something more to motivate me.

Not only am I whiney, but my Kids are Whiney

It is the end of the school year, everything is coming to a final rush...Dance, school, Brownies, Daisies, birthdays. They are tense, I am tense, they are at each other's throats. Sisters --- phew. You take it out on the ones you love. I need to get a handle on this. The oldest is testing her boundaries, the youngest just wants more attention. Aaaarrrrrggggghhh. Sometimes, I just blow up. They get privileges taken away and they cry and whine and OMG they make me nuts.

I'm smoking, smoking, smoking.

And the doctor says I don't need a nerve pill.

Happy Birthday to me

I'm going to be 40. No big deal. It's just another number -- Popaw lived to be 99 -- that's another 59 years. I am embracing my gray hairs, but hating the aching joints. All I want for my birthday is a clean house and some me time. No kids, no husband -- just me. I'd be happy to turn the radio up and just clean the house to my liking -- then soak in a hot bathtub and take a nap. Since Mother's day is Sunday -- hint hint -- this would be great.

A Big Scare

J**** has been trying to be hired on full-time at the factory. Yay!!!! he is now full time. was an uphill battle. He got a call this morning from the HR department telling him that he had falsified his application by saying NO to the question - "Have you ever been imprisoned for a felony or misdemeanor?" Well, I love my husband but when nervous he doesn't think real straight and to him imprisoned meant in prison. The saving factor was that in his interview they asked him if he had any concerns that might keep him from being hired. He told them he has two DUI's and served jail time. Thank God that he is brutally honest. From the phone call today around 12:30 until the decision at 3:30 we prayed and prayed and prayed. Today prayer worked. Thank you Lord. My husband has a full time job. We are proud and happy.

New Seats at Church

Yep, they got rid of the bench type pews and put in stadium style seating. Do you know how hard it is to control three kids in seats that have a seat that will bounce up and down? They can't lay down if they are getting tired, the seats are too close so the boy can't sit in the floor and do what two year olds do to keep them occupied. So, the boy and I stay out of the auditorium, he cries, I want to cry and the girls well -- towards the end they rock in their seats. I'm not spanking them due to a decision made without regards to thinking it completely through. They do look pretty though.

I could go on and on... but that is enough for today... Remind me to tell you about who all I am worried about. Good thing I don't drink...Nah -- I wouldn't have my life any other way.

Monday, May 07, 2007

Kentucky Derby Results

The Kentucky Derby is a big deal here in the Bluegrass.

You just HAVE to bet on it. So hubby went to Keeneland and placed a few bets.

We had the kids pick a number from 1-20 and Daddy wagered those numbers for them. Ms. F**** chose number 8 and her horse placed. So she won about $10.00. The rest of us -- well, we remember now why we are not professional horse handicappers.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Derby Breakfast

Every year we have a Derby Breakfast at work. Everyone brings in food or contributes money to the food. Our unit is responsible for breads and pastries. So, I am making my Granny's Caramel Dumplings. Granny was born in 1907 and this was her mama's recipe -- it's an oldie, but a goodie. A very southern dessert/bread recipe.



2 1/2 cups of brown sugar
1 cup of white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 cups of boiling water
2 tsp of butter

Combine ingredients in a 9 x 13 baking pan and work it until all sugar is dissolved and it begins to become thick. (Stir, Stir, Stir)


2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup sweet milk (to all non-southerners, this is just milk)
2 teaspoons of baking powder
2 teaspoons of vanilla
2 tablespoons of melted butter

Combine ingredients (will be like a cookie dough). Spoon dumplings into sauce. Granny said to not let the dumplings touch. Bake at 350 about an hour.

Yum, Yum Yum. Add a big glass of milk when you are eating this, it is very rich and sweet.