To answer the question in this posts title, yes. Yes I do!
This past weekend was the Simcoe Long Weekend here, which meant a nice three-day weekend and we were going to pack all our camping gear into the trailer and head off to the wilds of Ontario and camp on Crown Land and perhaps do a bit of offroading with the Jeep.
But the weather gods intervened and promised to deliver us yet another one of their miserable wet and cool weekends, so we opted to instead of camping of rock crawling, we would instead hang out around the nasty city and on the one sunny day of the weekend we would pack the family into the Jeep and head to Niagara Falls.
The decision that we made to cancel our camping trip was a very good one. There was a tornado watch and a torrential downpour where we were going to be camping, there never was a tornado but there were some pretty strong winds, which anyone that goes camping in a tent can attest to, is not a fun thing when you are sleeping with nylon or canvas as your shelter.
But on top of that, the torrential down pour actually flooded out many campgrounds during the weekend. As folks came back from their long weekend in the woods, they posted their pictures and each one made me more and more happy that we in fact decided to stay home.
On Friday night the oldest of my children went to a party with his girlfriend and his car dies, so that hubby and myself had to drive up and pick them up and get his car towed home.
On Saturday the husband and kids went to Canada’s Wonderland and spent the entire day walking around the park and having a great time on the rides together. I spent the day at home with the little man, and the two of us had fun playing and hanging out together.
Sunday the kids announce that they are worn out from their walking around on Saturday, so it was just hubby, little man, myself and two of the three dogs loaded up into the Jeep and our friend, his son and dog climbed into their Jeep and we all drove down to Niagara Falls along the lake shore, a nice scenic drive. Everything was going fine, until we got into Burlington and got stuck behind a very slow driving older gentleman on a stretch of road that was one lane and there was no passing. The drivers in this line of cars behind the man who insisted on driving less than 30 in a 70 zone were all losing their minds, but none more than my friend, who isn’t a fan of long drives to begin with. So as soon as the opportunity presented itself for him to pass, you better believe that our friend and a few other drivers gunned it and drove past the car moving at a snail’s pace. When we finally made it around the slow driver we pulled in behind our friends Jeep and we noticed that his rear shock was hanging low, about an inch or two off the road, and in danger of hitting a bump or something and being ripped off. So we called him up and gave him the heads up. He pulled off into a gas station, pulled out his big bag of bolts that he always carries in his Jeep (which saved us last Simcoe Day Long Weekend when our trailer hitch got mangled and a few bolts got sheared off, and we borrowed some of his bolts to fix it).
He dug around in his bag for a few minutes but wasn’t able to find the right size of bolt, all of them were too skinny, about 1/8″ when what he needed was a 3/4″. He was about to just stick in one of the smaller bolts to just make do until he could grab a bigger one, when his son piped up and announced that he saw a big bolt in the glove compartment, so his Dad rushed in and grabbed that bolt and ‘ta da‘ the bolt was perfect and my son’s friend was so proud that he saved his Dad and the Jeep. He wore the biggest grin for quite a while.
After that averted disaster we decided to stop for some food, and after driving around, looking for a place with a parking lot where we could watch the dogs in the Jeeps while we ate, we decided on an Italian place, which I have to say I have my doubts to it being Niagara’s Best Italian Eatery, and I will never go back again.
But after we ate our friend noticed that our U-Joint was busted and lucky it was still holding together, so we were able to drive home on it, with the plan to fix it on Monday.
Monday, the husband runs out and grabs a new U-Joint and starts getting to work, taking his tire off and that’s when he starts to make some startling discoveries.
Back in February the transfer case for our Jeep just exploded while we were driving along the highway one night. It was not fun, and it ended up damaging a lot more with its flying pieces.
The Jeep was in the shop for months, getting new parts and rebuilt. The mechanic is one that we’d been going to for years, and we thought he was amazing and the would treat our baby with tender loving care, ok, maybe not so much tender loving care but at least he’d do a good job like he’d done in the past.
But as the husband started to do the work he realized that the mechanic hadn’t actually done such a good job, since the nuts holding the tires on our Jeep were not all there. He hadn’t actually pinned the U-Joint in and that’s why it broke. The more he went over the Jeep, the more he realized that the mechanic had done a very slack ass job. We should have known something was up when he let us drive home with our Jeep and he hadn’t even put any oil into the engine.
So, we’ve resolve to not use that mechanic ever again. And the hubby is going to go over the Jeep with a fine toothed comb to see what else is done badly, maybe even take it into mechanic that works on modified Jeeps like ours to ensure that everything is done properly and that nothing more will go wrong.
But the reason that we’re feeling pretty lucky is because if we’d gone offroading this weekend, we would have ended up with a broke Jeep, who knows how bad or how expensive. So glad the weather gods made it so we cancelled our camping plans, this was one of the luckiest weekends we had in a while.
The weather this summer has been mostly wet and on the cooler side. For the last week or so we have had a few hot and humid days, which has been nice. But the reason just keeps falling. The Toronto Island just reopened after being more than 40% submerged from flooding.
We were supposed to go camping this weekend near Perry Sound, but because it’s calling for rain on all days but Sunday, that’s been cancelled. Yeah, I’m feeling pretty depressed about it. I’ve been in a bad space and I just need some time out of the city, away from the morons and the noise of the city.
So many years without a vacation has me feeling pretty low. We’re hoping to get out of the city next summer, so fingers crossed.
My art is stuck in a rut, I’m in such a negative head space these past couple months, I just can’t get the creative flow working.
My phone is on its last legs, twice now it’s died and the husband has fixed it and got it working again. But it’s time too look towards getting a new phone.
Also, my laptop died. Which sucks. I have all my recipes on there, I have all my art studies, lessons and inspirational motivators saved on there. Husband says he’ll look at it, but I’m not looking to hope. My hope died a long time ago.
I have been hanging out with Little Man Devlin, going to the Ice Cream Store, popped into the pool a couple times. Just doing typical Mom and kids stuff, not exciting but it helps to pass the time. We’d be going outside more often except the rain keeps us in.
I have taken the dogs to the dog park, they’ve enjoyed going into the river and meeting new four legged, hairy friends.
So it’s now August, heading into the last days of summer, which I have always thought of as the dog days, which can mean the days when the dog star rides at the same time as the sun (July 3 too August 11) or days marked by lethargy, inactivity, or indolence.
I guess the dogs d days of summer are the same as the lazy days of summer, I just like the sounds of dog days better.
But I digress, we are now heading into the last Wells of summer, so while I am still thinking up fun things for Dev to do, I am also turning my mind to preparing for back to school, and all that entails.
Back to school shopping, new clothes since this kid is growing like a weed, and of course I still have to make his new, school year bibs.
I guess I’m just going to be busy, busy, busy for the next while.
Inspired to paint this by a photo I took from our campsite up at Mississagi provincial Park a few years ago.
It’s hard to write anything here for me, mostly because I have nothing noteworthy to write. My life is pretty much in the same place it was 5 years ago, even a decade ago. The only difference is that my kids are older and the things I do to look after them has changed, such as I no longer need to cut their meat. Except for Devlin, I still cut his meat for him, obviously. I’m still changing diapers, just like I have been for the past 20+years. In 1994 I started changing diapers and watching a steady stream of children’s television programming and all these years later I’m still doing it. Still making puree meals, still watching the kids tv shows. The thing is that is not going to change, not anytime soon, if ever.
It can get a bit depressing, when I sit back and think about how much my life hasn’t changed, and how it’s going to be this way until the day I die. So, I don’t think about it. I fill my mind with other things, things that are sunny and bring me joy.
Other people don’t understand why I geek out and obsess about TV shows, why I get so involved with fictional characters from books?
It’s a way to keep my mind distracted. To keep the sad, depressing thoughts about my life away from the forefront of my mind.
It’s the same with my sessions of dungeons & dragons, I really like to play, getting together with my family and friends and spending a few hours, even most of a day, sitting back and relaxing and being someone else. It’s a vacation from my life, for a brief time I get to be someone else and not think about the shit that is my life.
Don’t get me wrong. I don’t walk around all upset and lamenting that my life is all tons of suck. I love my boy. I love how happy he is. I love how much he makes me laugh and how amazing he is. He has a smile that just makes me smile. 95% of the time, I’m loving him and not feeling like anything is wrong at all. But that other 5% of the time I’m dreaming ‘what if things had been different’. It’s a sad indulgence that makes me feel even worse because I get all wracked with guilt, like I’m wishing this happy little guy out of my life, and I’m not. It’s just that sometimes I think what my life would be like if my 18-year-old son was on the verge of graduating from highschool, if I’d been able to have a job without worrying about what kind of child care I’m able to get for my son. Not having to hire a babysitter for him just so I can go out and run errands and not have to take him with me.
If I’d been working since Devlin started grade 1, as was the plan, what sort of life would we have had with a 2 income family. I imagine we’d have owned our own house. I imagine more vacations in our lives instead of just 2 real family vacations in all these years. Life might be easier in some ways, but there’s no guarantee. There would have been other road blocks, other obstacles that we’d have had to face, and perhaps we might not have faced them together. Who knows?
So, when my 5% pity party ends I go back to being happy with my life and forget about all that other crap for at least another 6 months or until some other issue drops into our laps that makes me regret not being able to work like other parents, not being able to shoulder some of the financial burden so that it didn’t rest entirely on my husbands shoulders.
I thought I’d stumbled onto a solution for that part of my worries, but it didn’t work out.
And that’s ok, because it came with its own set of problems. But now I’m stuck again. Waiting for my life to move forward, hoping it will move forward but knowing that even if I manage to take a step forward, there will always be something else pulling me back again.