Archive for March, 2007

I have so much to say about the title of this blog, and honestly not enough time, but I expect to continue on with this, often.

In 1998 Milton Creagh came to the Treasure Valley and spoke to the community, with very direct verbiage…YOU HAVE A METH PROBLEM HERE IN IDAHO…no one listened. I actually was 28 when he came here, and I went with my mom to the Idaho Center to listen to what he had to say. Everything that came out of that mans mouth was so right on the mark. I remember listening to him and just shaking my head in agreement…some of the things/drugs that were prevalent were very new to our community…some I had seen 10 years prior, and yes…some I had done. When we drove away I remember that my mom and I didn’t stop talking the whole way…we were both in awe, we were both humbled, we were both pretty shaken. I realized then…10 years after I had graduated that I had an addictive personality. I realized then that only by the GRACE of God had I managed to excel in life without being an alcoholic or drug user. I had lucked out an was only…a smoker.

I shared alot with my mom that night that I might never have shared, and admitted to trying a good chunk of the drugs that Mr. Creagh mentioned while in Jr. High & High School (yes, I said Jr. High). I was a pretty good kid, knew right from wrong, and also really wanted to be accepted. And just like in that 1998 address by Mr. Creagh then, he said it again over the course of several days MULTIPLE times this week (March Against Meth) to many audiences…kids (people) do so many stupid things just to be accepted, and be cool. I am one of those statistics. I also realized that with a 6 year old daughter (at the time) that I needed to really stay educated and keep a watchful eye. I can’t change the world, however I surely can keep a handle on myself and do everything I could to keep the lines of communication open with my daughter so that when she was presented with (notice I didn’t say “IF”) the opportunity to smoke/drink/use drugs/have sex/the list is endless, that she would at least have as much information as she possibly could to handle the situation properly, make the right choice, say no, etc….and if she made/makes the wrong ones…well then I can only hope for a few things:

1) That I (we, my husband included) have given her all the right/informative information and that it was a mistake that SHE made freely knowing it was wrong to begin with, not because she didn’t know better.

2) That she has enough respect for herself and for us that she will come to us and admit that she’s made the wrong choice, and she’s learned from it—before it gets worse.

3) If she is/or knows of someone who is in trouble, that she feels comfortable coming to us (or someone else she trusts) so that hopefully she/they can get help and also so that the burden of hiding/hindering a problem is not on her shoulders. Kids/teens have enough stuff going on in their daily life, they don’t need the extra stress. That’s what parents/adults are for, to support these up and coming future parents/leaders/educators in EVERY POSSIBLE POSITIVE WAY.

So, with all of that in mind…I am thankful that God has really been looking out for me, and that my tough addiction is smoking…not that it is easy to quit, not that it’s a better choice, but only because I know I can beat it. I know, in my very heart that I would not be able to beat any of the other legal/illegal alternatives…and believe me, I’ve had strength through alot of trials that I wouldn’t wish on anyone. I seriously believe everyone has an addiction, some of us are just luckier than others when it comes to the severity…that is why when we (as a PEOPLE) see the path of destruction that gangs/drugs/alcohol are bringing to our families, friends, neighborhoods and communities…we need to get a handle on it WHERE we can. And the first stop is in our living rooms…don’t think you have to be “all that” to your kids, they respect the fact that you aren’t perfect. Share your struggles, share your experiences! And don’t wait until your kids are 12 & 13 to start talking to them…if you have elementary kids…start opening the lines of communication now! They are having issues in grade school too…some issues worse than others, but if you can talk about gossip/backstabbing/bullying when your kids are in the 3rd and 4th grade…then you will be able to talk about smoking/drinking/sex/drugs etc. when they are the most vunerable, and hopefully by then, they will be coming to you!!!!!!!!!!! You won’t have to ask, they’ll tell you what their friends are doing.

I was about 10 when I tried smoking…I got caught, I lied, I continued to do it. I didn’t inhale…but I still did it. I thought I was cool. I thought I was cool until 7th grade (Jr. High School), when some girls walked by me in the hallway and started taunting me that “ewwww someone smells like smoke”…they were the popular girls. So I thought, then I found out that they were the girls that didn’t smoke cigarettes, but they were the girls that smoked pot. Now that’s gotta be cool…if they’re doing it. See the pattern? Fast forward to High School…by now I (or even you who is relating to this story) know who has what drugs, I have a job, I have money and even transportation. Scary isn’t it. Friends/boy or girlfriends that are older, who have friends who have different drugs…you are cool aren’t you? So easy.

Parent’s, friends, family…anyone reading this…YOUR CHILDREN ARE NOT IMMUNE, DRUGS DO NOT DISCRIMINATE. Kids raised in good homes, both parents, brought up loving God, making good choices, good grades, with money, with goals…etc – those kids are no more immune than the kids with one parent, living in a shack, with no God, bad choices, no money, no goals….Drugs have no boundaries.

Kids will undoubtably make mistakes. That is part of growing up, learning, testing the waters…but help them to grow up saying “NO” (remember Just Say No?) and knowing “Not Even Once” is the motto they need to learn and also live by…because it only takes once, to get addicted to smoking, it only takes one drink to get addicted to drinking…it only takes once to get addicted to meth (and die), it only takes once to have sex and get an STD, or pregnant…

Be a good listener, not a preacher. Ask questions, be honest, be blunt! Do this daily, do it early, do it now…and please explain WHY they need to know “NOT EVEN ONCE”…
Guess it’s time for an update! :) What a loser! – Amber and Graham have been surpassing me…what’s with that? LOL Maybe this long one will help me catch up a bit!

Ok I’ll start here (previously emailed this to a friend, perfect for blogging) – Well I’m home from San Jose (gone the 13th, 14th and 15th)…I’m tired, with the time change and then time changing back and forth between here and San Jose…messed me up. Early rise every day, long days….3 of them! We went to the Doctor on Sunday, then off to the
beach…what fun! It was almost like driving to McCall (Or maybe Idaho city) through the canyon just to get to the beach…where it was open. Mountains so beautiful! Then the waves! Awesome! Then dinner at Alice’s Restaurant. Guess Arlo Guthrie wrote a song about Alice’s Restaurant…don’t really know the song/era/reason…but I overheard that it’s FAMOUS…I read a ton of reviews on it….and every review was either a 4 or 5 star….all held true. Great food. I ate a burger called the “La Mans”. Then back to the hotel….strange place I’ll tell ya. Looked like a college apartment complex (a small one) from the outside…nice windows the tic/tac/toe kind…well kept up outside…walk in the front door, everything looks updated and nice…newer carpet, new paint and wallpaper (textured)…and a sign. I posted a picture of it on flickr. Hysterical. I finally figured out it is because the hotel permits smoking which is known to cause cancer….anyway, the rooms are nice. Jaccuzis in them…ours had two beds a kitchette with fridge, stove, sink cupboards…and a sofa and table w/two chairs. Cute. :) Almost old, trying to get to new status. :) Serve breakfast every morning…scrambled eggs, bacon, french toast, toaster waffles, muffins, bagels, juice, fruit etc….nice! And then Monday thru Thursday they have a lite dinner, menu rotating. Monday night was make your own deli sandwich, with tons of stuff! :) Free food is always great! Then Monday we left for the surgery center we had to be there by 8:30, met a nice man who’s son was also having the same surgery as Rachel. Very nice guy from Ohio. Rachel did awesome throughout everything. Amazingly strong little girl. She just seemed to know what was going to happen next and wanted things to be very similar. They helped make it that way for her which was great. She slept all day, once she woke up we were released within about a half hour, it was about 5:45 when they wheeled her out to the car. Then we ate our sandwiches (Rachel had some candy and 7-up) and we went to the $1.25 store, so Rachel could look around. She felt pretty good. When she was ready to leave, we headed back to the hotel to do some coloring and have some girl time. Tuesday morning we were up at 5am, and outta the hotel after a yummy breakfast about 7:30, and only by the grace of God did we make it to the airport in the traffic (10 miles) in 30 minutes, and about 5 different freeways/expressways etc. later….to return the rental car and get checked in, through security, and into a very crowded room to wait for the plane. :) We all made it home in one piece. I was lucky, I got a good nap…Carrie and Rachel however, did not. Poor girls!

Let’s see, the rest of the week consisted of catching up on sleep, wanting to do laundry…and not accomplishing it…and getting back into the swing of things. I was thankful to come home to a house just as clean/picked up as I left it….but sad to hear that Graham and Amber did so well without me. It’s so nice to be needed…

Saturday Amber and I went with my mom and Gena out running around. We went to Morris Hill Cemetery to find a headstone, for one of mom’s fellow genealogists. We cleaned up around the headstone of this mans, and what we think was his wifes. Then placed some flowers for them, and took a couple pictures. We also went to lunch, Japanese, maybe not my best choice to take them too…but none the less an experience. LOL – I tried to pay the bill..since I ordered so much food (I wanted them to taste so much)…but even though I gave the lady my bank card…mom walked over there (while I was not paying attention) and told the lady she was buying. I was not amused. We also hit the dollar store, and ShopKo on our journey. :) Saturday evening, our friends (and previous neighbors) came over for a very nice visit and brought their youngest son, and puppy with them. Scrappy and the boys love their play dates! It’s so nice to watch them wear themselves out. And we get to visit!!!!

Sunday afternoon sleepy head slept until almost 1pm (she about choked when I went up and told her it was 10 to 1)…then she got some food in her tummy and settled in to do some homework. Graham and I took the boys to Zamzows to get some round-up and fertilizer…they went nuts…they love people! Doesn’t matter who, or where, just people! Then we headed to Home Depot for a doggie door. Even though we ran errands, sprayed round-up, installed the doggie door etc…we still had time for a short walk around the block with the boys.

And finally…today…MONDAY…I got some laundry done!!! Monday is usually my laundry day, so I don’t feel like I’m behind at all! Yea! We all pitched in with dinner and had bacon, eggs and pancakes for dinner. YUM!

Tomorrow is a new day! It’s not Monday anymore, however there is a 60% chance of rain, and the weather has been so beautiful, i’ll be sad to see it go…spring is here, that’s for sure! We are having the “Dell” guy over in the morning, to fix a clients machine (Gold Support is Awesome!) which is so funny, since he’s doing what Graham would normally do, but…the customer paid for the extended warranty, so Dell comes out and does it! Funny! We also are having a meeting with a man who does Dog Training in the evening…these puppies are so cute, we want them to STAY cute…and learn a few manners. :) We tried Puppy Kindergarten, and both of us were really not impressed…add to that our little guys are so VERY social and hyper, it’s almost impossible for them to chill and actually learn in that one hour time frame when there are 4 or 5 different “friends” to play with! We’ll see how this meeting goes!

Hopefully this will catch me up with my blogging…I’ll try and stay on top of it. If you get a chance, you gotta read Graham’s Blog he secretly reads news (inside joke) and found a real whopper of a news article! Hysterical! — Secrest Out !

So, first of all, I must comment on my last blog entry. I prayed Amber would be able to handle having a blog, and that we would not regret letting her have one. Some of the things she’s blogged about are not on our top 10 list of things to blog about, however most of them are exactly what we had in mind.

Our biggest deal is that it’s NOT myspace, and she has a place to be herself and vent. The sharing with our family and our friends is just a bonus so they will know how she is…and really who she is for that matter. :)

We’re proud of her, and sometimes we just have to let her be her. No matter how hard it is sometimes. Choose your battles. :)

Please feel free to comment, and share your thoughts about this…it’s always helpful to hear what others have to say!

xoxoxo
Steph

Ok – So I admit it, I am a sucker! You see, I guess it’s not only me…both Graham and I caved. Amber was all bent out of shape because Mom has a blog, and she doesn’t. We told her to state her case, and give us 7 reasons she would like to have a blog and 3 safety rules. She gave us 8, and 4. All of which are logical, and rules that she knows. Yea! It’s not myspace, so we’re happy. Anyway…we have full access, and hopefully she’ll use it correctly, or it’s gone! Zap! Disappearing! :)

Dear Lord, please help her prove she’s a good girl by following the rules! Thank you! Amen :)

Today is Thursday and you’d think that things would have slowed down by now…NOT! Graham finally made it home Tuesday night around midnight. It was quite a chore for him to get back home though, as US Airways doesn’t let people fly “standby”…can you believe that? He also got a very rude lady at the check-in desk. Poor guy! Needless to say, it all worked out eventually, US Airways made it right for him, thank goodness!

On Wednesday morning, Humphrey had to go in to get neutered. However, not only that but have 3 baby teeth removed, and microchiped in 2 places. Talk about traumatic! He really has been a trooper though! Thankfully they gave him some pain meds. Woo hoo! Pretty soon the whole family will be doped up! LOL Tommy didn’t fair too well though, he really sulked all day, wandering around the house aimlessly looking for his big brother. One look from those sad eyes and you just HAD to give him a treat. Seriously he made out like a bandit (manipulator) while his brother was getting the shaft!

While I only had one little one to watch, who mostly slept at my feet all day, I paid bills, got organized (at least a little bit more), did some filing, got the laundry completely caught up and managed to finally get the boys’ AKC paperwork done and ready to go in the mail! Yea! Cross a couple more things off my list! The bad news in all of this is that I overdid it with my toe. I paid for it in the middle of the night Wed night, oh…did I pay! I guess since I accomplished so much the day before, I should have tried harder to stay off my feet the past couple days. Tough!!!! That is really tough! Two puppies, a teenage daughter and a husband…all of which are used to being taken care of!

Sunday I’m leaving with my best friend (and her daughter) to go to San Jose for a couple days. Her daughter is having surgery while we’re there…but in the midst of it all we’re going to try and go to the beach and find some “shells”….I can’t wait to take pictures! I’ve never been there before, so we should have a little bit of fun in addition to the little bit of discomfort…maybe we can make up for it. I think my best friend and I both really need a break from reality too. So it should be some good “me” time too.

Been surfing blogs alot lately….I have to admit, they are something of their own breed, obviously. I’ve found everything from vacation blogs, to baby blogs, to book blogs, to super software geek blogs…wow! I’ve had this blog for a couple years now, and have never done anything with it…but recently my mom mentioned about one of her cousins who sends out an email with pictures to a bunch of people whenever she travels…”she should blog”…that sparked me to take my own advice. This way maybe mom can show her mine…and maybe it’s something that would work for her…it’s pretty easy.

I have had several old journals/diaries…but this is different. I am sure that people type their whole lives and thought processes in blogs for that same purpose…along with random ideas and poems…however, I’m not entirely certain of what this will bring for me. I do know that it’s been something nice (maybe relaxing) for me to do, and I wish that I would have entered in alot of stuff over the past two years, if not here…somewhere. It’s been quite busy around here!


On the road
Originally uploaded by
Boise IT.

Here’s a picture of where Graham was staying. He’s so funny! Look closely you can see him in the mirror! Can you say Geek?

Well, in the midst of playing around (since I can’t do anything else but sit here) I decided to see what the link is between blogger and flickr…so I picked a picture within our flickr account, and chose the icon that said “blog this” and now I have the opportunity to type in my text, and the title came in all by itself, as the name of the picture.

How fun is this! This is a picture of Humphrey and Tommy…taken quite some time ago. (I’ll figure it out, and post it later here). They love sleeping together, and don’t like being in separate crates. However, they are starting to out grow the crates. *sigh*

It’s Monday – Aren’t Monday’s worthless? I say that partially because I’m sitting here with my feet elevated, ice on my big toe…all the while thinking of the things that need done, that are NOT getting done. Graham just left for the airport. He’s going to Phoenix to set up a network for a client there…the timing of my toe is just not good. Oh well, what can I do. He’s leaving 55 degrees here and going to 85 degrees there. I’m jealous. He also said he might not come back. :(

Humphrey Bogart and Tommy Lee, thankfully are pretty good and seem to know that I can’t be up playing, so they just lay either next to me, or on the floor beneath me. Very sweet! They know that Amber will play with them when she gets home. The back door is cracked a bit so they can go out and play and then come back in when it’s time to take 5 and check on mom!

Speaking of Amber, she’s getting a cold. Poor girl. I think I’ll probably keep her home tomorrow, because she’s not feeling good (and mom MADE her go to school today, how rude!) and also because she has an orthodontist appointment tomorrow (to get her bleaching trays) and Humphrey has a pre-op appointment to get some blood work done. He goes in Wednesday morning to get neutered. Guess I’ll be livin on Ibuprophen tomorrow instead of the good stuff, so I can drive! :)

…ok, more later.

It’s time to start blogging! Enough with the “catch-up” emails! LOL This way EVERYONE can be caught up, at their convenience. Sounds easy enough!
We are getting much closer (not quite ready yet) to publishing the new family website…it’s amazing. Graham has been working really hard trying to please his most “picky” of clients. Me (Steph). He’s doing a great job, and surprisingly without many changes. We had talked about adding a blog to the website, and this way is one way that I could work in it without much effort. I set it up, so I am the one learning it. :) Who knows, maybe we’ll all have one of our own someday.
Today’s been a rough day, I stubbed my toe on the door, and managed to pull right big toe-nail 3/4 of the way off…blood everywhere! Off to the Minor Emergency Center we went…and after he wrapped it up really tight, and wrote me a Rx, he sent me on my way! Can you believe that? He did give me some great pain killers though! So I can’t complain too much. Just gotta stay off my feet, and keep it iced and elevated. Great! Let’s see how long that lasts!
I’m just playing around today with this blog, mostly to see what I can and can’t do…so understand if things look strange, that’s why! Additionally please give me some grace with my spelling etc, since I’m a little loopy! (Loopier than normal that is.)
Love you all!