Burned bridges

Photo by Marek Piwnicki on Pexels.com

Well, the time has finally come and home is no longer a dreaded place. The subject of many of the rants on this blog has now burned a bridge and there is no chance of home turning into a place of total turmoil again (well, there is a large caviat to that I guess. More on that later.) It’s tough to go all the way back in time and cover all the ground that could be covered to properly put this whole thing into perspective, but that would be a lot of work and I am not sure you all care that much to have a complete picture. If you have been around the blog for a while, you can probably put things together with just the few posts mentioned here today.

I have tried to help those who couldn’t help themselves. I have been trying for many years and it finally came to a head this last weekend. The trouble with this is again that it is self-inflicted and someone thinks, yet again, they are the vicitim. Really, it is by choice and being unwilling to take any advice. Unfortunately, it’s the five grandchildren that will suffer the most.

When my step-son and his five kids were allowed to move in back in November there was hope that maybe there would be some changes in their lives that would lead to a postive outcome (and it might still but seeing that at this point is hard to imagine). Things that have been discussed here previously (see above as well as the following) was about wasted food, not parenting the grandchildren, and the outright disregard for sanity in parenting.

It finally all came to a head last Saturday.

The night before (Friday) by son had been up a large ortion of the night with the youngest grandchild because she was sick. As requested, he let us know he needed more sleep (he requested an hour) and we agreed to take over childcare duties so he could get some sleep. That request was abused and turned into four hours.

As a result, the five grandchildren were left in our care and we did everything we could to keep them occupied, busy, loved, dressed, fed, and entertained. We kept them from going in to wake their dad, even though he totally went beyond the time requested and agreed upon. At one point in the morning, the second oldest (age 6) got a little too rambunctious with the middle child (age 4) and repeated hit him “accidentally.” The 6-year old had been warned repeatedly and was asked at one point to stay on his bunk bed as a time out until he was released. Again, there was unusual noise and I checked on the commotion…the 6-year old was on the floor wrestling the 4-year old, having him pinned below him and him crying. I took one step into the room, delived a single swat to the backside of the 6-year old with my hand, which sent him crying back to his bunk.

He and I chatted about the incident not five minutes later and he admitted that he disobeyed, that he was playing too rough with his sibling, and that he hadn’t “accidentally” hit his sibling either. He went to far as to admit that he deserved the swat. He was back to playing and didn’t cause any other issues the rest of the day.

UNTIL. Until, he skipped into the room while his dad was making dinner and blurted out, “Grandpa hit me.”

I was there. He’s six, so his recollection of the events and why he got the swat weren’t entirely accurate. My son then proceeded to say, “Stop hitting my kids.”

Long story short, the discussion after that point corrected the events as told by the 6-year old, involved a threat of calling the police if I continued to discipline the children in a way that he didn’t agree with, and an ultimatum that said they’d move out if I (well, we, because my wife has spanked them too) didn’t bend to his parenting style, which includes the lack of discipline.

Mind you, he has virtually no place to go except one friend’s house which is not ideal for any of them.

So, I recommended finding a new place to stay since I was not going to do what he wanted me to do.

My wife and I had already had the discussion that this would likely come up again. There was a blow up about it a week prior where he basically packed up the kids with no coats, no socks, no shoes, and no food, and left the house for about 12 hours. We were clear when he left the first time that nothing on our part would change since we love the grandchildren and we are constanly having to step in to pick up the slack. We had the agonizing discussion that the threat of law enforcement would eventually be used and how we would respond to it…the conclusion was that we would ask that they move out, knowing full well that that wouldn’t be the best thing for the grandkids considering the turmoil they have endured over the last several years. But, we also knew he would refuse to leave them behind with us.

At this point, they haven’t returned. As far as we are concerned, he has burned his bridges with us. We, his mom and I, have been there and picked up the pieces enough. We love our grandkids, but for him we are done. If it really comes down to it, we will take the grandkids back to live in our house but he will not be welcome.

A tough decision, but we see no other way around it. We aren’t going have someone (even our son) threaten us and force us into living and “grandparenting” into a style we believe is wrong.

Home is more peaceful these days. It sucks considering what our grandkids are going through.

But, we couldn’t be held hostage in our own home either.

Baseball is back…

…but it really isn’t baseball.

Sure, they are playing the game. That part I like. I have missed it. Spring Training, when I was there in February, feels like a lifetime ago at this point.

But, with the shortened season, rule changes for said short season, and all the protest stuff going on before and during the game, it doesn’t feel the same. I love the game, but it just isn’t the same.

I likely won’t watch.

I maybe probably will listen. Maybe. Probably.

I am torn.

selective focus grayscale photography of baseball

Photo by Rachel Xiao on Pexels.com

Uninvited

close up photography of bird nest

Photo by Evelyn Chong on Pexels.com

OK, am I crazy here? Am I being unreasonable?

If you have guests staying in your home, do you think it is inappropriate for them to invite guests over to your house? Essentially, guests are inviting guests into your home.

Furthermore, what if all the guests are family?

So, some family is now living in my home for an undetermined amount of time. It’s been less than a week since this change. One of the conditions of moving in was that they were not allowed to have guests over, because having people in your space is one thing but then to have those people inviting strangers into your home because they are their friends, is just a whole other problem. This condition seemed to be understood.

Anyway, last night I overheard a conversation where the newly homed family members (in my home) were making plans with other family members who don’t exactly live nearby, but are within driving distance of their own home, to stay at the house. I believe the conversation went something like, “Well, you can come and hang out for the evening and we can probably find a place for you to crash. Driving home that late doesn’t make sense. I am sure we can find room. It’ll be fun. You can just go home the next day.

Excuse me? Fun for whom? Have you checked with me yet? Is this OK with me? You are making plans for me and my home without checking with me first. How is that OK? I mean, I have already altered my life to allow some family to stay in the house, do I really need to rearrange my life just so more family can stay in my house? Really?

Does it make a difference in this situation if the family members involved are your adult children and grandkids? One adult child has moved in with her 11 year old daughter. They are inviting our middle son and his family (wife, 3 boys under 7) to stay at the house too. Mind you, there is barely enough room for the people already staying in the house…

Am I crazy here? Am I being selfish?

I liked my nest empty. I want it back that way. That’s not to say I don’t love the kids and grandkids, but come on…it’s kind of the principle of the thing, isn’t it?

Conflicted

nature photography of river near trees

Photo by Michiel Alleman on Pexels.com

There are a few things in life that I just have a love/hate relationship with. I love them and yet hate them at the same time. Those two emotions don’t usually go together and often are in regard to different things, but today (well, really the last several days) I am conflicted because of weather conditions.

In particular, snow.

I love snow. I love the peacefulness and quiet as the snow falls. There is comfort in that. The blanket is leaves, at least for a while, causes he world to slow down or pause. A stillness ensues. I love the look of snow on the landscape – there is beauty in it! Sun glistening off freshly fallen snow. White mountains and trees framed by bright blue sky is stunning. Anyway, you get the picture. There are aspects of snow that I love. As a kid, I liked playing in it.

But, on the other hand, I hate snow. It’s tough to drive in. I can do it, but I don’t like it. I would just rather not, but when necessary I can do it with relative ease. I especially don’t like other people driving in it! People are idiots most of the time, so adding slippery white stuff as an ingredient to travel just makes for trouble. Snow is cold. I know that is an obvious statement, but I don’t like being cold. It is just miserable. I don’t particularly like that snow has to be removed (sometimes multiple times) from the sidewalk and driveway. That can be hard work! No, like REALLY hard work. As an adult, I don’t enjoy playing in it. Not even a little.

I am sure there are more things I love and hate, but those are the ones off the top of my head. So, how can I be so conflicted on this? “Why?” is maybe a better question. But, I don’t really wish to know. It just is what it is.

So, there you have it. One item I am conflicted on. There are many more, but let’s just put this out there since that is on the forefront of my mind as we deal with snow and ice up here in the upper left corner (Pacific Northwest) of the US.

Do you have something you are conflicted with? A love/hate relationship, so to speak?

Love is just a word

love text sign

Photo by Emre Can on Pexels.com

I am not sure if I have become jaded/cynical/pessimistic or just old. It’s likely that it is a combination of all of these things.

Anyone else feel like the word “love” is just another word these days? Like, people don’t actually know what it means and abuse the use of it all the time. Sure, they may technically be using the word correctly based on the definition, according to Webster, but just because the dictionary has put a definition to it doesn’t necessarily mean that people actually love. Splitting hairs here? Maybe. But I get really tired of hearing when it most likely isn’t really meant.

You hear it all the time but you probably don’t really pay attention to how it is used…because it is used all the time.

“I love this pie.” Do you really?

“I love the characters of this show/book/movie, etc.” No, no you don’t. Not really.

“I love that you work so hard at making a difference in the neighborhood.”¬†Doubt it.

You get my point (or maybe you don’t). The abuse of the word is rampant. It’s irritating. Well, at least to me. It’s irritating to me.

Does anyone else find this even mildly irritating or am I alone in this?

I don’t love the use of the word love in common vernacular. It’s value is diminished when it is abused.

Marketing mayhem

red and white ribbon

Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

Anyone else already tired of today?

Anyone else think this day, Valentine’s Day, is dumb?

The stores love it because it is just a marketing bonanza filled with stupid little gifts. Money, money, money! The cash registers ring non-stop.

Ever notice that the price for things that are normally reasonable suddenly go way up? Case in point, flowers. A dozen roses at Safeway any other time of the year is $14.99. The days surrounding Valentine’s Day…$45.99. Seems like a scam to me! Hopefully you ordered yours early or you may be outta luck, or pay through the nose as the price probably went up.

Sappy cards @ $5.99 a pop. Little trinkets and stuffed animals @ $7.99. Chocolate, of course varies on size and quality, is priced like there is going to be a shortage in the near future. I mean, really, nothing says “I love you” like a box of chocolates.¬†I love you so much, why don’t you add a few pounds.

Don’t even think about reservations at the last minute!¬†Prepare to drop a fortune if you are going to a special restaurant. You might as well just hit up the McDonalds drive-thru and go home to sit on the couch.

Alright. I am sure you get it. I’ll stop.

Today is stupid.

Got a Valentine’s Day horror story? Do you agree with me? Tell me in the comments!

 

I’m not done loving you

broken heart love sad

Photo by burak kostak on Pexels.com

I am sorry. Your once forgiving ways have slowly diminished over the years and it is time for us to part. The way you met my needs was unparalleled, unselfish. We worked together so well, it was like you were a part of me. I wasn’t done loving you, but I think you were done loving me. I’ll never hold another like I held you. I’ll never watch over another like I have watched over and protected you. I’ll never look at another like I have looked at you. You will be missed, but not forgotten.

Ever had one of those experiences you just wish you could take back? An instance of regret as you dispose of something you have loved for a long time?

Do you have favorite items you just can’t bear to let go of because they are worn out?

I had that experience a few days ago.

My favorite mechanical pencil has finally decided it doesn’t want to hold an eraser. The mechanical part (lead dispenser) works just fine. But the eraser. The eraser kept falling out and I couldn’t patch it any longer to make it stay. As soon as I had to erase something, it would just fall out. I am not perfect, so having the ability to erase is kinda of big deal. So, now, after 10 years of using this pencil I was faced with a choice.

Do I continue to use it and get an eraser that isn’t attached to the pencil? Then I would have to keep track of two things…OR, do I just bite the bullet and toss it – moving on to my next favorite pencil?

If you read the first paragraph, you know the outcome of this love story. It is a sad story.

So, what favorite item did you hate to get rid of but were forced to? Tell me what it was and why in the comments!