The Importance of Diction

Heh… Diction.


I was sitting in bed with The Peach the other day and (as I am apt to do) I farted.

“Excuse me! Mommy farted!”

To which, The Peach leans over to the right, grins hugely and lets one rip.

“Heehee I sharted too!”



“Noooo… Fuh-fuh-FARted.”

~scowls~ “Fuh-fuh-SHARTED!”

Ummm… Not. It.


I love…

I love the way you smirk when I make a snarky remark and then I tell you how clever I am.

I love the way you instinctively reach for my hand when I’m sad.

I love the way you always know (whether I’ve told you or not) that I’ve had a shitty day.

I love that you hug me when I walk through the door when I have had a shitty day.

I love that you send me a frowny face text when you leave the house without a kiss goodbye. Although, I still appreciate that you don’t come kiss me goodbye when I’m sitting on the toilet.

I love that you send me an “I love you” text every day (almost). Even if we’re both home all day.

I love that you take the girls when I’m getting stressed (most of the time).

I love the way you look at me like I am the sexiest, most beautiful woman in the world. Even when I’m in my sweatpants, haven’t showered and am bloated and grouchy.

I love the way you are constantly trying to gross me out, just because you think my reaction is cute.

I love how you remember stuff I say, like how much I wish we had season 4 of The Walking Dead. And then, a week later, you sit down and fuss with your computer and all of a sudden it’s streaming on the TV in the bedroom.

I love how you try to make Princess Punk laugh when she’s pissed off at me.

I love, that when you bring The Peach in the room for a diaper change, I will shortly hear insane giggles and squealing and you playing “Tickle Monster.”

I love that Princess Punk became your daughter too. No question. No hesitation. Just love.

I love that we made The Peach.

I love that you have seemingly infinite patience with our children. And me. And My Mom.

I love… that you love me…

And I love you too.

Not a stalker, I promise…

Okay, I think I have posted a few times about Allie Brosh of Hyperbole and a Half. I am not a stalker, I swear.

I think the reason why, is that first of all, she’s an amazing writer. I wish I was that good. She’s smart and funny and has a quirky way of looking at things that makes sense to me in a very real way. But mostly… Mostly because she has written about depression in a way that is more telling, more eloquent, more understandable and more accessible than anything I have ever read or could hope to write myself. She manages to convey the sense of nothing that depression can engulf you in. And she seems to make it understandable to people who’ve never experienced it themselves. At least, I think she does. I wouldn’t know exactly since I’ve only ever seen it from the inside.

She did an interview on Fresh Air on NPR. Much of the interview revolved around Allie’s posts about her struggle with depression. Which honestly, did her some disservice because there were only a couple of those posts and all of her other stuff is just as awesome and not so sad. But I guess that’s what draws people in right? The suffering of others? Anyway… If you haven’t already, you should listen to the interview

It’s real. And raw. And honest. And heart-breakingly familiar.

Given my general level of scatter-brain, I very rarely can sit and listen to something without doing something else as well. I play games, I cook, I clean and I work. I was at work when I listened to the podcast. I had to stop working. I sat, riveted with tears in my eyes as Allie haltingly talked about suicide and how it hadn’t really started with her wanting to kill herself, just to not be HERE anymore. And how she had made up a plan that would look like an accident so it wouldn’t hurt her family as much. And I knew it. I knew that feeling, that impulse, that desperate thought, that anything else, even death, would be better than this. And I knew, that like Allie, the only thing that had kept me alive then, was the thought of my family. Not how much they’d miss me, but how disruptive and upsetting it would be for them to find me, to know that I did that to myself. And, like her, I look back now and I get choked up, because I know how awful it would have been if I had actually given in and taken the only escape I saw.

So I listened. And I cried a little bit. And then I went back to work. And I felt a little better about things.

Thanks for that Allie.

Oh crap, it’s Vermont…

I forgot to get my tires changed out.

They’ve been sitting in the back of my 10 year old Subaru wagon for a week. My Subaru that is supposed to be AWD but has a transmission problem so it’s only 2WD. Which apparently, makes a Subaru extremely hard to handle on slippery roads.

So good snow tires are a must. And I have good snow tires.

Inside my car.

It’s the last week in November. I should know better by now. I’ve been living in Vermont for 7 years now. We have frequently had snow on the ground on Halloween. This year, it’s been unusually quiet.

I was tricked.

Lulled into a false sense of security.

And I forgot.

I forgot that winter driving is shitty here. Especially this time of year, when it’s not quite frozen, just a slurry of half-melted snow, ice, and the foundation of salt and sand that will help a great deal later in the season, but now just slides around in all the other muck. It’s fucking deadly.

So this weekend, we got an inch or 2 of snow which quickly softened and partially-melted making the roads… How can I describe them properly?

Remember in the summer when you were little and one of your friends had that slip-and-slide which looked so awesome untill you slipped and slid and slammed the back of your head on the ground? Yeah. I woke up in the morning and looked out my window at the beautific mountains and the gentle white blanket covering everything and thought, “Vermont is AWESOME!” Then I slowly pulled out of my driveway and my rear tires slid  across the road untill I was half-way in the other lane. It’s a really good thing I leave my house so early and there was no one else on the road.

Vermont was not quite so awesome at that moment.

Tonight we’re supposed to get a lovely storm, snow this evening turning to sleet and freezing rain overnight.

I have an appointment to get my tires changed out.

On Monday.

I think at Thanksgiving this year, I will be thankful for not killing myself on the way to and from work the day before.

At least, I hope I will be.

You @$$holes


My mortgage company just changed servicing companies. I signed my paperwork to have my direct deposit transferred over and everything, on time, when I was supposed to. My mortgage payment is supposed to hit my account around the 9th of the month.

11/12… nothing

11/13… nope

11/14… Called the new servicing company. They assured me they had received my paperwork and that with the changeover, payments were being drafted a little later this month. Suggested I call back tomorrow.

11/15… Still nothing. Called again. As I was on the phone with this young woman , somewhere in the central time zone, she announced that my payment had just been posted.

But wait…

“Oh, I see the bank has returned the payment for insufficient funds.”
“Ummmm… No. I am looking at my account balance right now. The money is there and has been there.”
“I’m sorry about that ma’am. Let me take a look for you. May I put you on hold?”
“Okay. I’m going to put in a request to re-draft the payment.”
“Could I verify your bank account number and routing number?”
“~bankaccoutnumber~, ~WRONGroutingnumber~”
“No. That’s not correct. Let me give you the correct routing number please.”
“Oh no ma’am, I’m sorry you have to provide a written request to do that.”

Sooooo… Faxed in the request.

11/17… Online banking shows TWO drafts for $946. My account is now overdrawn by $631.49

Called servicing company.

“Ummm… Could you please tell me why you drafted my account twice?”
“I’m sorry ma’am. Let me help you with that.”
“It looks like there was a draft on 11/14 that was returned for insufficient funds and then another draft today that you authorized the last time you spoke with a customer service representative. One of the charges should drop off before they actually post tonight.”

(for the sake of some brevity, I’m paraphrasing a LOT now)

“Are you absolutely positive?”
“Yes ma’am. I’ve checked with a supervisor and one of the charges should drop off your account tonight.”
“And if it doesn’t?”
“You can just call us tomorrow and we can resolve the matter then.”

11/18… Both payments posted.

Called servicing company.


ok… That’s what I wanted to say. What I said instead was something like,

“Excuse me, I was assured yesterday that the second draft to my checking account would fall off and not actually post to my account. Yet there it is.”
“I’m sorry about that ma’am. Let me take a look for you. May I put you on hold?”
“I’m sorry for the inconvenience ma’am. I spoke to my supervisor, it looks like we’ve received both November and December payments. So you do not have a payment due until January 9th.”
“I did not authorize a December payment. I can not afford to pay two mortgage payments in one month. You have just sucked up my electric and fuel bill payments and left my account massively overdrawn.”
“I’m sorry about that ma’am. Let me take a look for you. May I put you on hold?”
“Ok, well I spoke to my supervisor and you have two options at this point. You may send us a written request for a refund of the last payment. It will take about 7 days to process.”
“WHAT???? ARE YOU JOKING? What is my other option?”
“You can apply this to your December payment.”
Fuck. You. That is not an option. That is a financial catastrophe in my house. Either way.”
“I’m sorry for the inconvenience ma’am.”
“I will fax you a request to refund the payment. I am expecting you to pay any late fees or overdraft fees I may incur as a result of your massive fuck-up mistake.”
“Yes ma’am, you may request that.”

Called bank. Spoke to the lovely and extremely helpful Melissa who patiently sat through my lunatic-worthy rants and then said,

“Why don’t we just return the second draft. It will be insufficient funds anyway and you won’t have to wait for a refund. Then you can have them refund the $37 returned item fee.”
“Oh. Okay. That sounds much better.”
“I’ll let you know when the fee posts and write something up stating you were charged the fee because they drafted your account twice. You can send them that and they should refund the fee.”

11/19… Returned payment and $37 fee leaves my account with a 277.51 balance.

11/20… Servicing company calls me to let me know they are processing my refund. I advised them that my bank had already returned the payment and this would no longer be necessary. I advised them that I would be faxing a statement from the bank and I expected any fees incurred to be refunded immediately.

“Yes ma’am, I’m sorry for the inconvenience.”

11/21… Online banking shows A THIRD draft for $946. My account is now overdrawn by $668.49

Called servicing company.


Ok… I am aware that these motherfuckers are holding the deed to my house. So what I actually said was…

“Could you please help me figure out what is going on? I do not even know what is happening now.”

Apparently the customer service rep couldn’t figure it out either.

“I’m sorry for the inconvenience ma’am. Is there anything else I can help you with today?”
“Can you pay my electric bill?”

~awkward silence~

So I sent this fax… To the servicing company. To my bank. AND to VHFA, who is the actual lender.

Please help me resolve this matter regarding the multiple payments that have been drafted from my checking account. There were two drafts on 11/18/13 leaving my account overdrawn by $631.49. I was assured that one of the payments would drop off before it permanently posted to my account. It did not. On 11/19, I spoke with your customer service again and was told that since the payment had posted, I had the option of either applying it to my December payment or requesting a refund which would take up to 7 days. We live paycheck to paycheck. Neither option would be anything less than a major setback to our already fragile financial stability. Since I seemed not to have any other option, I sent a fax on 11/19 requesting a refund for the second payment. Then, after speaking with my bank, we agreed that they should return ONE of the charges for insufficient funds, charging a $37 overdraft fee which I expected you to reimburse. That would have left my loan paid current through November with my regular payment to be drafted for December on 12/9/13. I received a phone call from customer service yesterday afternoon regarding the situation. I advised her that I will not be pursuing a refund since my bank had returned the payment. I stated that I would be sending proof of the overdraft incurred as a result of your mistake and I expected to be reimbursed. Upon checking my account this morning (11/21/13) in order to provide a screen shot to prove the overdraft fee had been applied, I found that yet another draft for $946 had been posted to my account. This is leaving my checking account overdrawn by $668.49 since there is also the $37 fee. I have bills that need to be paid. My electric bill is due tomorrow. My fuel bill is already past due. At this point I do not have any idea whatsoever what to do to resolve this so I can go about taking care of my household. I have never paid my mortgage late. Not once. It makes me extremely nervous that you hold the deed to the home I live in when you can’t seem to process a monthly payment correctly. The second page of this fax is a screen print from my online banking showing two drafts for $946 from my account on 11/18/13, even though I was repeatedly assured that this would not happen. Then the returned payment and fee from my bank and the THIRD pending draft for $946 that hit my account today. I am completely confused and highly irritated.

Thank you

Mrs. Newlife


11/22… Third payment has posted. I am now beyond pissed. And extremely worried, because at this point, even if and when they straighten this out, I have no idea where I stand and what bills I will be able to pay. I had to shell out almost $400 for glasses for Princess Punk and myself today. And Thanksgiving is in 6 days. And Christmas is in a month. And while I had everything carefully budgeted and planned out, I have no fucking idea what to do now.

I received a call from the servicing company on my way home today.

“We just wanted to let you know, that we are researching this matter and we will get back to you as soon as we have more information.”
“Any idea when that might be?”
“No ma’am, I’m sorry, hopefully the beginning of next week.”
Fuck. You. Ok. Fine. Thank you.”
“Yes ma’am. We’re sorry for the inconvenience.”

Because shit isn’t stressful enough right now.

I bought a MegaMillions ticket today. I figure the karma bus has to turn around at some point instead of repeatedly running me over…


Six Degrees of Good Samaritan

A text from The Zen Master at 12:15pm

Do you know when Fairy Dog went out this morning?
I didn’t let him out, why?
I haven’t seen or heard him all day
😦 did you ask Mom?
She hasn’t seen him either

To Princess Punk at 12:33pm

Did you let Fairy Dog out this morning?
He’s gone
Meaning he’s gone. Daddy can’t find him
Keep calling for him i told dad that i let him out on my way out
6 hours ago.
Just keep calling il go look for him later

Zen Master again…

Princess Punk said she let him out
Could you please look for him?
~32 minutes later~
Not having any luck
Drove the loop around
Went towards woods in back of the house
Drink of choice at Deer Camps everywhere...

Drink of choice at Deer Camps everywhere…

It’s hunting season. Rednecks with rifles and 6-packs of Natty Light would easily mistake my collar-less dog for a coyote. We know better. We know this time of year that Fairy Dog needs a bright orange collar. We know that our usual routine of letting him out the front door and letting him back in when he barks at the door is just not going to cut it this time of year. He’s a good dog, he wanders a bit sometimes but always comes back when we call him, but in the month of November, he either goes out on a leash or someone stands on the front porch while he runs out and pees and then races back in. Because he is a completely neurotic ass-kisser, we HAVE to take him on a leash at least once a day and walk him around because otherwise he just races back in and won’t poop.

I went home early. I was already feeling shitty and Princess Punk had an appointment with JO later anyway. When I got there, The Zen Master suggested I post a plea for help on facebook. So I posted a couple pics of him and this around 3pm;

My Fairy Dog is lost… Last seen early this morning street that I live on near town landmark… If you’ve seen him or know anybody who’s seen him, let me know, we miss him! He’s a sweet, shy, collie/shepherd mix, about 45lb — with Princess Punk and The Zen Master.
We went to the appointment with JO and then back home.

I checked my facebook. 5 people had shared my post. There were a handful of comments, mostly things like, “Oh no!” and “I hope you find him soon!”

But then this one, from The Zen Master’s friend’s girlfriend…

Someone reported finding a lost dog in town several miles away. They posted a picture and it looks like it could be Fairy Dog. I will tag you in it. GL

After much fussing with computers and smart phones conspiring against my poor dog…

I just texted The Zen Master the pic and contact number of the people who found him.

Sure enough… There was my Fairy Dog, in the back seat of someone’s car, looking morose and nervous.

After a phone call and some brief conversation (“Wait… You picked him up WHERE???”) This wonderful, lovely, charming good samaratin named Samantha drove to my house with Fairy Dog in tow.

He wouldn’t get out of the car.

After some coaxing, he jumped out of their car and leapt into The Zen Master’s truck.

They probably thought we beat him or something.

After bringing him inside and letting the Peach shower him with animal crackers (“Beah! Beah, havvit. Heah, havvit. Pat pat pat pat huuuuuuuuuuug, guh Beah”) we came to the conclusion that something had scared the crap out of Fairy Dog (probably a gunshot) and he hauled ass. Since Samantha had picked him up in the morning behind a school, over the river and through the woods (literally) and she said he was running flat out, and since he was such a chicken-shit when he got home, we assumed that whatever it was, happened soon after he was let out.

Neurotic and a little twitchy, but my Fairy Dog is home, safe and sound. Thank you to Good Samaritan Samantha who picked him up several miles from my house in other town, and thank you The Zen Master’s friend’s girlfriend for finding the picture she posted on facebook.
A happy ending at last… — with Princess Punk and The Zen Master.

Welcome Home Fairy Dog!

Welcome Home Fairy Dog!


Thank you social networking for returning my neurotic, collar-less dog in the midst of hunting season. Within 12 hours.

A metal-mouthed teenager

Princess Punk is now unable to go through as metal detector without beeping.

After several months of prep, her teeth are now imprisoned in metal and will be for the next two years. And she seems OK with it. And The Zen Master and I are particularly thrilled because the braces negate some of the grown woman appearance caused by her curvy shape.

And in two years, when the braces are removed, she’ll undergo surgery to correct her severe underbite. Which will sick, but will all be worth it in the end.


I think she’s pretty cute…

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