kmduvalois's Xanga

Friday, August 31, 2012

Angry Women?

Today I woke up angry.
I was angry at myself because I could not get up to get Jacob (aka Crackle) off to school on time.
I was angry at myself because I did not get my blog post written and posted in the time I wanted to.
I couldn’t even drum up the gumption to say nothing
That annoyed me.

I spent most of this last week helping DD#2 (aka Princess)  with her school work—the last of the high school classes that needed to be completed online for her diploma.
I have been knocking myself out over Government, Econ, Short Stories and Forensic Science. She has also been working hard and we got it all done.
I am also going to school and I have a final tomorrow. I got all my assignments done except for an Author Study (book report for grownups!) and the Final Exam.
I’m wiped.

But it brings me to the two things I have not talked about but that are a part of this project because they are a part of me.

1.      Commitment
I am afraid to commit. I admit it. For so many years I was strapped to my home, my chores, my children my spouse… I felt controlled by laundry, cleaning, preparing meals, caring for children… and then I had Jacob.

2.      Lazy
I am NOT lazy. I hate that word. I am also not undisciplined, however I do procrastinate. I will admit that fault—if you will—but I am not lazy.
As a matter of fact I found two of my books on procrastination last week when I was sorting through the bookshelves.
I’ll get around to them …sometime.

One of the reasons I wanted to take on a daily blog was so I could express my frustrations (read annoyances & anger) and figure them out. Another reason was because I keep making excuses and I want the excuses to stop keeping me from what I really want to do. If I just make it a habit to write every day and JUST DO IT! Then the issues of commitment and “laziness” will take care of themselves.
Or something like that.
That’s what I believe anyway.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Pardon me while I digress...

OR:Hey, it's still Wednesday in Hawaii!

Today I was supposed to write about my issues with commitment but... a “typical” crazy day ensued and in the end I am frantically trying to get this in (it's after midnight, but I refuse to consider it a fail! ...Hey! It's still the 29th in Hawaii! LOL)

So here's the thing...

I took DS#1 to get his braces. ...finally! 
He let me take a “before” and “during” picture but not an after...? seriously? Anyway, I promised I wouldn't post it on Facebook, so I'm not... ;)

Then I had school work and general schmoozing around on the internet and thinking about my writing and blah blah blah blah blah...

AND next thing I know it's time to take Jacob to his MRI appointment.

First, I got lost. Then while trying to input the stupid address into my Navigator I rear-ended some poor schmo bumped another car. He was really nice about it but I insisted he take my info anyway.

I can't afford the bad Karma these days!

Turns out I was half way to Long Beach, okay more like 3/4ths. GAH!

So I finally pull my head outta my arse figured it out and get to the place. 
We park (without having to pay! Relief!) and go for a short walk to the address. It was hidden so I felt a little better that I overshot it by almost a block.


They were *supposed to put him out, as in Anesthesia for the MRI but nobody said anything. There was no prep, no discussion. We got handed some ear plugs, Jacob was instructed to lay still and Voila. (Yes, I got to stay).


So, I got lost, rear-ended somebody drove all the way to Sunset Blvd in Los Angeles for... what?

Fine. I was glad. I didn't want him to have the drugs anyway. The whole thing scared the poop outta me lasttime!

...and off we go.

And I ran out of gas in the Valley (where the 5 and the 14 meet).

You should know that in the last two months(ish) I have run out of gas three times. One of those times I actually ALSO locked the keys in the car.

No, we do not have AAA.

Combine those with the memories (no, mostly not good) of me running out of gas All. Over. The Antelope Valley, and I have a new book title... Running on Empty

I was eventually rescued. (Someone is getting a home-baked treat tomorrow!)

But Lands, what a night!

So... that's my story and I'm sticking to it as to why my blog went up late...

*Doctor's recommendation.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

The 40-Day Thing (aka Lent)

I was a Senior in high school when I first learned about Lent. I was fascinated by the idea. I had a Catholic classmate that gave up sugar (a common sacrifice for Lent I discovered) and put a cramp in our cooking class assignment because of it, but I respected her. I thought it was really cool that she took it seriously and didn’t cheat.

A lot of teens would cheat. I mean it’s not like her parents would know. But she would, and that was impressive to me.

When I was a missionary (for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints) in Japan back in the day (late 80s) we used to do this thing called A Season of Sanctification. It was a period of time when we tried to be “perfect.” Yeah, I sucked at it. I loved the goal-setting  and check-off-list making. I Love that! I still make lists, like crazy! I am not so good on the checking-off part. You know, the getting ‘er done. Meh.

So when I came home from my mission I kind of decided to do the Lenten thing and make a sacrifice during the 40 days before Easter. I thought it would help me appreciate the season and bring me closer to the Spirit. I gave up chocolate, sugar, or soda. Sometimes I DID something instead of giving something up. One year I participated in Body-for-Life and went down two sizes!

They say it takes 21 days to make a habit so you’d think I would have a habit after 40+ days but usually not. I would binge before (the year I made the most delicious homemade Boston Cream Pie for Fat Tuesday, notwithstanding!) and binge after. The said year that I did the BFL? I stopped when it was over and if you know that BFL is a 12-week program then you know that I didn’t make it.

In the last 10 years or so I have tried to combine the two ideas. I have tried to create a Season of Sanctification during Lent where I try to do “it all” for 40 days. I have never done it. I usually give up after about 3 days. Meh.

This year, as part of my Blogging goals and my year of the Uneven Number I will be incorporating two Seasons of Sanctification. The first one will begin in November around Thanksgiving (which if you do the math is approximately 40ish days before Christmas) and again in the spring around Lent. My blog posts will be reflective of this goal and I have an outline that I plan to follow. I am hoping that the timing will help to bring me closer to the Spirit of Christmas and Easter, the two most holy of holidays for Christians. I consider myself a True Christian more than anything else. The Golden Rule is the motto of my life. 

Wish me luck... and maybe, bug me? 

Monday, August 27, 2012

I Am What I Am vs. Who I Want To Be.

I am not having an identity crisis.

I know who I am. I am Katrina. I am a daughter, sister, niece, wife, mother, aunt, grand-daughter, cousin.

I have five children. They need me. They will always need me and I would not have it any other way. One needs more from me than I am always capable of giving and this is difficult. I am striving to finally find a balance between Who I Am (now) and Who I Want To Be.

I am losing Me. 

I don't mean in that *good way where you serve and benefit from being of service to other humans (particularly your family) but in that way where your identity and purpose flounder. The struggle makes everyday activities almost impossible. 

I avoid commitment.

I am a hermit. It's easier than saying, "Yes, I'll do that," and then having to cancel because something came up beyond my control. Usually Jacob. 

I suppose I could believe that this time will pass, but it may not. And if I'm not here to keep it going there will be nothing left for me to give.

That's what I'm afraid of.

I am a writer.

Writer's Write (did you know that?) yet I am not. 
Do you see the fiction novels on the shelf nestled between Jude Devereaux and Janet Evanovitch? Yeah, that's where I belong. 

I know this. I have known it for a very long time.

Because I am a great writer! 
(Thanks Lani & the Cherries for always reminding me!)

I am not "in it for the money" because that's silly. 

I am in it because I have stories to tell.

I have thoughts, ideas, and dare I say opinions, about women, and love, and sex [gasp!] and the power we not only do not realize we have, but we generally give away! What? Yes. We GIVE it away.

No. No. No. No. No!

Embrace your power! Know who you are and what you have to give and then GIVE!

That's what I want to do.
That is Who I Want To Be.

*Matthew 16:25 KJV

Sunday, August 26, 2012

1. The Goal: 365+6

I have a theory. I think when I am an even number age that my life doesn’t suck as much as when I am an odd number age. I realize it’s not rational or logical, all I know is that it has been that way for a long time. 2011 seriously sucked for me. I have been needing 2012 to be better… and so far, not so much. The last couple of months have been extremely difficult (as they were exactly a year ago as well) and I’m done having excuses to put off my dreams. Done.

It is time to start.

Taking a page from someone who has always inspired me and recently (as a voice from the past) is seriously altering my life at the moment, I have decided to spend the next year (and a week) to blog. Basically it’s for the year I am an odd number again. I am afraid. The last three years have been quite awful and even though I have been keeping a gratitude (I call them Grattitudes—an ATTitude of Gratitude—get it?) journal during that time, it has still been awful.

We’re talking people dying, having to move, being poor, being sick (and tired) kind of awful.
It’s not that I’m unhappy, I just know I can be happier, mostly with myself.

This is the time.

I am doing this, and I need ya’ll’s help to keep it up.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Summer Adventures, or Not

So I have several things on my mind.
  1.        Why I don’t like going on vacation.
  2.        Downloading free books for Kindle.
  3.        Jacob’s arm, Jacob’s school; Jacob in general.
  4.        DD#2's school work.
  5.        Writing as my “job.”

1) I don’t like to go on vacation: Not with my family anyway. We go on a wonderful trip with my parents and siblings to Lake Powell every year and it is wonderful. It has become a tradition since 1994—I remember because I was pregnant with DD#2 our first year and DD#1 was so small; it was a blast! We have not gone every year and DH hasn’t gone in several years. That’s fine. But it takes its toll on me! I admit that I spend most of the week reading and sleeping. Last year and this year I tried to make it a rule to get in the water every day.

Can you imagine being surrounded by beautiful, pristine (okay maybe not so pristine) lake water and not wanting to go in? Here’s that thing. Usually it’s very cold so you feel that initial I-don’t-want-to-do-it feeling but once you do you’re fine, generally speaking. This year was warmer. Last year my rule was to go down the slide 10 times a day and once I decided to do that I was doing it. This last year has been hard on my body what with getting Shingles again and being diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and generally living in constant pain. The evidence is in my weight gain and the fact that climbing the spiral staircase to get up to the slide top seemed like too much for me so I did not do it. I actually only got in the water once. Then Jacob dislocated his elbow and all bets were off. No more water for me. I was On Call as Chief comforter/mommy.

Last summer and this summer we took a “just our family” vacation. Both years were excellent. This year we went to Santa Barbara County. We camped at Lake Cachuma (not so great), spent a day at Solvang (not so great), and visited Refugio and El Capitan state beaches. The beach days were A-m-a-z-i-n-g! I actually went in the water (not past my waist, don’t be silly!) and refined my tan. The good time nearly rivaled last year’s trip to the Santa Cruz area. I missed DD#1 who is working in Utah (very proud of her though)! Those family vacations weren’t so bad but I admit DH does most of the work. I am unable to do a lot. I help, of course, but even the cooking was left to him. I did make one fire this year but it nearly went out. The Boy Scout(s) rescued it! Even with that the trip is exhausting.

What I really want is a week, okay just a few days, in a hotel where it’s stocked with sub sandwiches, Doritos and diet soda and I get to go out to eat once a day. The rest of the time I get to spend writing or watching movies or reading. Sounds boring to some but a JOY to me! That’s why I don’t really like vacations. They are not vacations for me. I want to do what I want to do when I want to do it (including eating or not eating, as the case may be).

2) Downloading Kindle books: Okay, so I subscribe to a few emails that give me lists of the books that are currently available at for free as Kindle downloads. I get two or three lists a day, well four actually. I am currently receiving a general list (Pixel of Ink), a non-fiction list (Power Reads) a cooking list (Dining Downloads) and a Christian list (InspiredReads). I download 3-6 books a day. It’s true. I will never have enough free time to read all these books for HOW FUN that I have them. I will never be bored again! Lately I’ve noticed that I “already downloaded” many of the books. Oops.

3) Jacob. So I mentioned Jacob’s arm. This will make this post even longer and I really don’t like my posts being longer than two or three paragraphs. Jacob dislocated his arm in June by jumping  off a swing at Lori’s house. We took him directly to Kaiser in O.C. and they sent us to the hospital (Kaiser) in Irvine. They put him out for the reduction, splinted it, wrapped it and sent us home. We went to the Lancaster facility about 10 days later where they re-X-ray’d it and said we needed to see a specialist. I asked for a removable brace because I have been here before. Approximately 3 years ago we went through this nonsense before. He dislocated it (still fuzzy on the how because he was taking a bath and that just seems crazy!), had it reduced, splinted, etc. at Kaiser Panorama City. Followed up in Lancaster where they said he was “fine” and removed the splint, no brace. He RE-dislocated it within two weeks and at that follow-up I asked for the removable brace. When we saw the specialist this time, we drove to the Kaiser on Sunset Blvd (near Children’s Hospital) in Los Angeles. He seemed to think it was no biggie and he could wear the brace “as needed,” which I interpreted as Most of the time, but Jacob interpreted as; Whenever I feel like it. We went to Lake Powell. He went “cliff-jumping” and RE-dislocated his elbow. No, he was not wearing his brace. I took him to Page (AZ) for the reduction and he struggled to get out of the anesthesia. Yeah, it was not a fun day for Mom (dad wasn’t there, you’ll note). He did wake up and when we followed up with the specialist a few days later in Los Angeles he is now saying Jacob might need reconstructive surgery. Bummer. They will use cadaver tendons to replace his (probably) stretchy elbow tendons. First we get to have an MRI where they will put Jacob under. :::sigh::: No, Mommy is not excited. He currently has a cast. Oh, and it's not waterproof. *eyeroll*

Oh, and Jacob was “supposed” to start school yesterday. When he got there (via bus provided by our local school district) they had no idea he was coming and sent him back home. Great. So I am fixing that SNAFU now. He now WANTS to go to school and is “punishing” me for the mix-up. Loveliness ensues.

4) DD#2 has until August 31st to “finish” high school. She will then go to St. George to live with Grandma and Grandpa until she finds a job and gets the money to attend Southern Utah University. She wanted to take a trip with her friend so she whooped her tush in gear and got it done except for just a few lessons. I’m helping her a little (Why was Juliet mad?) but WOW! When that girl decides to work, she W-O-R-K-S! Who knew?

5) I am trying to treat writing as my job. So here I am. Writing, that is. Now I get to work on the fun stuff.