Reunion Time

No child left behind has a whole different meaning in the Testerman family, we see a child within the family that is in need and people step up to meet it. I, myself, was one of those children, my birth mother should never have had children, she was not the mothering kind. This is not a bid for pity, it is a fact, she knew it, she gave all of us away, I have often said I fared the best.
I digress, allow me to explain my thought pattern, this weekend was my family reunion and as usual there were a ton of kids running around. A truly great sight to see the younger generation there running around getting to know each other; making memories with their cousins that will last a lifetime.
One of my cousins was telling me how he was trying to get permanent custody of four of the little boys, for whatever reasons their mothers are not able to care for them. Some have even been put in foster care at this point; he is hiring an attorney to get the boys.
Several are his grandsons; several are his brother’s grandsons, his brother that has passed away. I am not surprised by his endeavors, you see someone who was not in my direct line stepped up and took me. My cousin’s generosity in this area is inherent, I have seen it over and over, Testermans stepping up and taking on a responsibility that really isn’t theirs but we consider it ours due to the children being our blood. Whether they are direct line or not, we do this because, well it’s what we do.
When someone gets married, and the other person already has children, we take those as well. They are now family, they are ours, in all the important meanings of the word family.
Elizabeth Anne’s fiancé will find this out when I start stealing his little girl to come over and play with Tessa and the Irishman’s girls. She’s a little young yet, but soon she will start saying she wants to go to Gigi’s house. I already consider her my new granddaughter.
The Irishman went with me again to my family reunion; we took his son and his youngest daughter. The oldest one had plans that she didn’t want to give up, understandable at her age, she is 12 almost thirteen, and well at this point there was nothing but strangers at this event.
So off we go with two kids, a dog and an Irishman, yes we took Stormie with us, after a quick stop at Starbucks we were off on our road trip.
We get there and my family is as loud and crazy as usual, I’m so happy some things never change. My cousins all embraced the Irishman’s children, welcoming them and even asking if they would be back next year.
When we were leaving my cousin Cindy hugged each one and told them welcome to the family.
I asked the Irishman’s son how he had liked being there, and here is a direct quote from him: “Angie your family is crazy, not the scary kind of crazy, the kind of crazy you want to be around again.”
I believe the world would be a better place if all families had the philosophy of no child left behind.

Hopping

Today is officially my last Thursday posing as Friday event. I was offered a job in another department and I start Monday. It will be a 5-day workweek, I don’t know if I will know how to behave in that situation, however I shall figure it out.

I am incredibly grateful for my new opportunity within the major telecommunications corporation I am employed with. It was an unexpected offer, however a welcome one nonetheless. I packed my desk yesterday; it is a very bittersweet circumstance. I truly enjoy the people I work with; they are all different, with different personalities, quirks and temperaments. The one consistent thing with them all is their helpful attitudes; I am so fortunate to have worked with this group for so long. Twenty-four of us are going to the new job, so happy to be going with so many familiar faces. So sad to be leaving so many, I pray the rest can find jobs as well; they are all in my daily prayers.

When the layoff announcement came, they told us 43 people would have to go, we were stunned, shocked, dismayed and a depression settled in the office. With people finding jobs and with the unfortunate passing of one of us, that number is down to 11. The one of us that passed, he would be happy that he saved one person because that is the kind of person he was.

From 43 to 11, that is huge, the mood in the office is now one of hope not despair, I see people smiling and laughing more. We are grateful for our new opportunities and hopeful for the ones left in the office that they too will be able to find employment within the company.

I have to say here, now, our Chief Steward came through, he has worked tirelessly in the pursuit of opportunities for our people. I am beyond impressed with his dedication in this endeavor; it is what is going to keep me a union member. I also have to give huge kudos to our 2nd level manager; he also worked tirelessly helping to make this happen. I have to be honest here, I didn’t really pay attention to his mood, but when I saw, after the 24 people were told of their opportunity he looks lighter. I didn’t realize what a toll this had taken on him; I am impressed (it is a word being given a work out here, however it fits) with his caring, I am sorry I didn’t see it before.

I will begin my new adventure on Monday, learning new things, helping a whole new set of customers getting to know new people and even seeing old friends.

Before anyone thinks, wow how lucky, no, it was not luck, it was God, pure and simple. There were a lot of prayers going up for the people in that office, I am still praying that they can pull 11 more jobs out of the hat.

On a different note I am revisiting a segment I call Does That Make My Dog Crazy. Last night I come home and found the Irishman and Stormie are playing chase. Stormie actually hops, yes, hops, like the dogs in the old cartoons. I tried to get this on video, but she knows when she is being recorded! She stopped doing it! Then she and I began to play hide and seek, this is our favorite game. She will chase me to the kitchen, I will hide behind a wall, she goes to the other side, I slide around out of her view, she then runs around. I slide, she runs, then she will become very quiet, I will peek out and she is there and she jumps for joy because she won that round of hide and seek! What a joy she is, she definitely keeps our household, well, hopping.

Change

I have to give a huge shout out to the Irishman, I came home yesterday to some laundry being done, all the trash was taken out, the lawn mowed and the kitchen spotless. I think he doesn’t think I see all of that but I do and the stress it alleviates is great. Thank you Irishman!

Yesterday was interesting, full of surprises that I am not at liberty to say right now in this format. I do believe it is a good thing, at first I wasn’t positive, but now I am. Sometimes we run towards change with outstretched arms, welcoming whatever the wind blows in, other times change is thrust upon us. This change is being thrust upon me, I firmly believe that God is in control, and I believe this change came from Him. Pushing me in a direction that He wants me to go, I am curious to see where it will take me. So far I have not been let down by change, at times it has been difficult, at times it has been overwhelming, but in the long run it has never been bad.

There are so many things going through my mind right now, I will save them for a different time. This is a short post, more to come later.

Busy, Busy, Busy

This has been a very busy, fun filled weekend indeed; I hardly know where to start. Let’s start with Friday, Tessa’s class was singing for the school Friday afternoon, so off I went. She did so good, I am so proud of her, she actually had a big part and she just got out there, in front of everyone and sang her little heart out.

There was no Friday night dinner, as the Irishman’s girls had a dance review happening. Instead we decided to make it Saturday, the Irishman had chosen the menu, only fair he should be there to partake.

Saturday, Tessa’s class was preforming for the Onion Festival, so off we go to that, we were all there, she did beautifully once again. This time in front of more people, she did not inherit the shy gene.

Then it was lunch, steak, corn on the cob, grilled asparagus and Caesar salad, we got a new grill. Jeffrey put together the grill, Jeffrey also cooked the steaks, he seasoned them perfectly. Everything was so good, Tessa got to play with the girls, we all got to eat. Good food, good conversation, fun times with Jeffrey, Elizabeth, Alex and the rest.

I am exhausted from all the prep work; shopping and cleaning up, I do believe today will be spent relaxing. By relaxing I do mean doing laundry, I need to get caught up today is the day.

Tomorrow is another fun filled day at work; I am hoping to hear good news, like more co-workers got new jobs. So far 7 people that I know of have been offered new jobs. That makes me happy and hopeful for the rest that are affected by this round of layoffs. Make no mistake, my job is not safe, the rest of us will be gone by November. I am actively looking for a job within the company; think good thoughts for me people.

I am thinking good thoughts for all of those that are under the gun so to speak right now. The majority are good people and good workers, I am not going to name names, there is one that I do not have an ounce of pity for. He/She has treated his/her co-workers horribly, so much so that if anyone there does not like them on a personal level.

Sometimes you cannot like how someone does business, and still like him or her on a personal level. This person is not to be trusted with anything, it’s sad really, when you think about it. We are all on this earth for such a short amount of time, 110 years really isn’t that much in the grand scheme of things. Why make everyone around you miserable just for your own enjoyment? That is the question I find myself asking, with no answer in sight.

Oh well, I hope everyone has a great day and keep looking up cause that’s where it all is! (Yes, I quoted Kidd Kraddick)

My Review of Spa Esoteric

Yesterday I went and had the facial Jeffrey gave me for my birthday, and I was not disappointed. The place he chose, Spa Esoteric, is located in old McKinney, in a house that is over 100 years old. When I walked in the door I was immediately put into a calm state, the atmosphere was nothing short of perfection.

My appointment was with Irene, she was gracious and welcoming, she explained to me step by step what was going to happen and how my skin was going to react. She expressed surprise at my age, in a good way, and put me at ease immediately. She told me she would not be chatting during the facial; she would only talk to me if she needed to tell me something about my skin.

I immediately fell in love, I do not enjoy chatting during my facials or massages, I want to relax, not talk. She asked what products I use, I told her I was a true Mary Kay user; I have been using the products for 25 years.

The Chocolate Cherry facial was beyond any expectations I might have had, my skin felt wonderful afterwards. She told me that whatever I was doing was working, she did recommend I use something gentle in the line on my face and only exfoliate twice a month for the type of skin I have.

She did not try and upsell me on needless products; she did not try and convince me that I need to change my current products. She told me that it was working for me, just be a little gentler with how I handle my skin.

I noticed that they do more than just facials; they have a full service salon within the building. I will be going back and enjoying the services they have to offer.

Please check them out at www.spaesoteric.com, well worth a trip to historic downtown McKinney. I believe in spending dollars locally, so I will be using them again and again. For many things, check out their website, make an appointment and enjoy. Especially if you live in McKinney or the surrounding areas.

The day got better from there, Alex had the day off and came over after my facial, then I went and picked up Tess from school. I made dinner, Jeffrey and I ate together then the Irishman came home with his two girls and Alex came back and I fed more people. There was plenty for everyone and they all seemed to like it, the only one missing was Elizabeth Anne and her fiancé with his daughter. Hopefully next time an impromptu family gathering happens she will be able to come down for that.

I have decided that whenever I pick up Tessa I will be making dinner, so maybe next time I pick up Tessa Elizabeth can plan on coming down and hopefully her intended will be in town so he can come as well.

That’s all I have for now, I hope everyone has a great day and enjoys the artic blast that is headed our way.

Happy Day After

What a great day yesterday was, I decided that since I was picking up Tess and the Irishman was getting his girls I would make some treats and order pizza for Valentines dinner.
So, I made cupcakes and dyed them red, with purple frosting, then made big, heart shaped, sugar cookies, bought candy, decorated the dining room. I thought that would be it, then to my surprise a text comes from Jeffrey telling me that Tessa’s class is having a Valentines Day party and it starts at 3 if I wanted to go. Did I want to go??? Uh, yeah!
So off I go to surprise Tess in her class, what fun, first graders are so much fun, no guile, no shyness, just pure joy. I took my camera and the kids had a ball taking it and taking pictures of each other. I am going to have the pictures printed and give them to Tessa for her to keep as a good memory of her first grade experience.
Then another surprise, the Irishman’s girls were having friends over, so extra pizza was in order; I already had enough of the other goodies.
Another surprise, Elizabeth Anne was in town and came by to visit with Tess and myself, then to top it off Jeffrey stayed and had dinner with us as well. The only person I didn’t get to see was Alex, the only thing that could have made it a completely perfect Valentines Day.
I know that Valentines Day is touted as a romantic day, however, love is love, and I got to be around people I love. I consider that a win.
Maybe next year will be about romance, we have had years where it is about romance, but this year was about family.
I hope everyone had a great day and celebrated in the manner in which they wanted to. If not there is always next year to look forward to.

I’m Alive!

I have a lot and a little on my mind, this month is quickly winding to an end and I am happy to see February on the horizon. First up, Elizabeth Anne’s birthday then mine, both milestones this year. Elizabeth Anne hits the quarter century mark and I hit the half-century mark. And for the first time she is half my age, this happens rarely and I believe it is a good sign, not that I really believe in signs or luck or anything else of that nature.
Still enjoys this rare occurrence, I shall, fully.
We are still enjoying the new abode, the house is wonderful, I am loving having carpet only in the bedrooms. I know the electric bills in the summer are going to be much less than being in the apartment. So many great things about living in a house as opposed to the apartment. Number one is no one is stomping on my head that was so completely annoying.
I know I haven’t written in a while, so let me get you all caught up. Last week Tessa’s mothers called me on Tuesday and said Tess was out of school Friday and could I pick her up and have her spend the night. Let me tell you I was all over that, put in for the afternoon off on Thursday and it was a Tess and Gigi day.
A pancake for breakfast, a quick run to Bed, Bath and Beyond for a special brush that is supposed to get tangles out easer then off to Kid Mania.
Fun was had by both Tess and Gigi, then her dad came and got both her and Russ as he was staying with us for a week.
The next day was museum day, I had promised Tess a trip to the museum and Jeffrey said let’s make a day of it. So we took her and the Irishman’s two girls to the DMA (Dallas Museum of Art) where we did indeed see a couple of mummies. One was a not royal person so their sarcophagus was not constructed as wonderfully as a Pharaoh’s would be so the feet were exposed. She could see what an actual mummy looked like. She was a little shocked, she thought they would be all wrapped in pristine linen, when I explained that the mummy was thousands of years old and that’s what they look like her jaw dropped. Totally worth the time and effort to get her there.
This weekend was uneventful, cleaning, laundry oh wait, no I lied! I got to see Elizabeth Anne for a few moments Friday evening and Saturday was lunch with Alex, very nice indeed. So see not so boring after all, today is back to work where I am sure I will be helping a ton of people keep their connection to the world. It’s always a good feeling to help someone keep connected.
Have a great Monday!

Nocona Update

I have an update on Nocona, this morning she is clear eyed and trying to stand, best news is she “did her business”, which she had not done since Tuesday. She has been on stool softeners all week, it finally paid off, thankfully so, because the Vet said that was her big worry at this point.
She was able to walk a little outside and do her business, so things are looking up. When I picked her up Friday she was worse off than when I dropped her off. She was lethargic, and not moving at all, the vet said she probably would not last the night. Well she did, Elizabeth and I decided to take her off of her pain meds for the whole day of Saturday, because she was drugged up, you could see it in her eyes. By yesterday evening she was doing better, eating and drinking.
Today she has eaten a whole can of dog food and my tuna, she has also been drinking, then she sleeps. Which is kinda normal for her, and the Irishman, I feed him, he sleeps.
I am very happy, I am praying this is the first steps on the way to recovery, I know it won’t be all the way, she is after all 12, but I do hope this means we have many years left with her.

Thankful List

I have totally missed saying something I am thankful for every day on Facebook, so I will say all thirty things here, now, buckle up:

1. I am thankful that I know a Gracious and Loving God that forgives my transgressions. I pray daily that I am able to forgive others.
2. I am thankful that I have the children that I have, I have seen other peoples and it’s not pleasant, so to my children, thank you for being simply amazing.
3. I am thankful that I have the friends that I do, I don’t know what I ever did to deserve any of you, but I am thankful you remain my friend.
4. I am thankful for my love of animals, I believe a love of our furry and feathered friends show real humanity.
5. I am thankful that I live in the middle of the country and am not on a coast that is hit by tsunamis, hurricanes, earthquakes and torrential storms.
6. I am thankful to live in a country that when those things do happen, all states send help to the people that were hard hit. We are a caring country that comes together no matter what our political believes to help our fellow man.
7. I am thankful to our men and women who serve in the military, you are simply the best of the best, you are the definition of who we are.
8. I am thankful for my job, major telecommunications corporation you literally saved my family from poverty. I will be forever grateful for the opportunities you have given me.
9. I am thankful for technology, as much as we all lament how it is isolating us, I do believe with the current natural disaster we can see how fantastically helpful it has been in keeping us all in the loop with opportunities to help.
10. I am thankful for a new beginning every morning.
11. I am thankful for Starbucks, you feed my addiction, you are always there for me, and I love you.
12. I am thankful I have a roof over my head.
13. I am thankful I have a car to drive
14. I am thankful I can afford whatever I want to eat, I have choices
15. I am thankful for my health, I am the healthiest person alive, and I am thankful for my farm girl background that has, I believe, given me my fortitude.
16. I am thankful for freedom of speech.
17. I am thankful for all of the recent opportunities I have had to walk out of my comfort zone and do something differently.
18. I am thankful for boots, seriously, what would my life be without my kickin’ boots? Dull, so very dull.
19. I am thankful for freedom of speech.
20. I am thankful for books, that all of our technology has not wiped out ink to paper. There is nothing more relaxing for me than to hold a book and read it. I love the feel of the book, the weight, the smell, everything about books.
21. I am thankful the Irishman is getting healthier. It has been a long, hard road to health for him and I am thankful he is in a good stretch right now.
22. I am thankful for angieworld, it gives me a platform to spout whatever I want, no one has to read it, however, it is incredibly cathartic for me.
23. I am thankful for Dean Cain. That’s all.
Ok, I can’t do 30, 23 is my limit, I hope everyone has a great day, it’s my Friday and tomorrow I am in studio with Shanon J recording our show which airs Saturday evenings.

Weekend Noodle

Once again I sit here facing Monday, I always have a hard time on Monday as I find it difficult to fall asleep on Sunday night. I wish it were easy but it isn’t, perhaps others can empathize with me.
This weekend was crazy busy, it started off Friday evening with me delivering Dr Who DVD’s to BBFF, then dinner at Gloria’s, very nice. Very entertaining, BBFF is very good company, although he once again reminded me I am in charge of finding him a girlfriend. So I am putting the word out, looking for a nice, cute, geeky girl for handsome, funny, geeky boy. Late 20’s to early 40’s please apply.
Saturday was a me day, I admit it, I first had my hair done, once again Beatrice outdid herself, I look fabulous. Then it was a spa day for me, I was fully pampered at the Pure Day Spa in Frisco, TX. First on the menu was a massage, I have never had a massage by a man masseur before. It was wonderful, I prefer a firmer massage and he was pitch perfect, and he didn’t chat. I was able to fully relax with being expected to make conversation, what a treat! I was finally using the Valentines gift the Irishman had given me. I had champagne, strawberries and was able to relax, please go there and ask for Todd. He was amazing. Next on the menu was a chemical peel and microdermabrasion session with Van. She was also great, not real chatty so once again I was able to relax and enjoy my time with her. The Pure Day Spa was simply amazing, you have to go, when you do be sure and ask for Todd and Van, both professional and good at what they do.
I was a complete noodle after that and just went home, ate my leftover nachos and watched TV, it felt wonderful to do so. I cannot begin to explain how all of that made my Saturday less painful, it was the 9th anniversary of my mother’s passing. I dread the day, I hate it, even though I know she is home, with my dad and incredibly joyous. I miss her, I miss her gentle humor, her wisdom and I miss someone in my life giving me unconditional love. When one loses their mother, well that is when you realize no one on earth will ever love you as much as she does. If your mom is still alive, hug her, giver her a call, tell her how much she means to you and how much you appreciate everything she has done for you in your life.

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