Slight Turbulence

Bring it on, bring it on, bring it on. From here to the eyes and the ears of the 'verse, that's my motto. Or at least it would be, if I start having a motto.


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Getting Things Done

Today I went to work, then delivered KidA to an oral surgery appointment, shopped for cold foods after her appointment, dropped her off at home with directions for KidC and KidI to nurse her while I went back to pick up pain medication at the pharmacy that was conveniently closed when we left the dental offices.

I then revised the Chore Chart, which rotates about every quarter so the kids aren’t always doing the same chores for too long, then I pulled some weeds and raked around the house. Finally, I rallied KidC and KidI (with a surprisingly quiet tone) to help me remove all the furniture off the enclosed patio deck so we could sweep it and dry out the outdoor rug and pillows that endured the weekend winds and rain.

I feel accomplished on these kinds of days. I also feel alone. The DH is at the firehouse so these days happen regularly because his shift is 24-hours at a time.

I will feel alone and then I feel badly for feeling that way because so many military families do not even have the luxury of knowing their spouse or partner will be coming home the next day. So many single parents do the same thing, day in and day out. I also feel guilty for feeling that way because so often as I was growing up did I pride myself on my independence and ability to “go it alone” or “do it myself.” (I really painted myself into a corner on that one.)

It takes a little bit of effort to draw myself out of dwelling on the predicament. Really, I know whining helps no one. I know that I am fortunate to have the kids generally willing to help when I need it. I teach my children that feelings are always valid. People feel angry, discouraged, cheated, proud, exuberant, and comical. What counts is the actions you take, not how you feel.

So although I feel left alone to do so much of tasks, I remember to be thankful I have loving children. I remember to appreciate living in a nice home with a patio deck.

I know that alone is my choosing but I acknowledge the feeling… Then I focus on what needs to be done. The linen closet always needs to be straightened. A friend always needs a quick text to say “hi”. The kids could always get a hug.


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Title and Tag Line

I selected the blog name Slight Turbulence when I decide to move from iWeb to WordPress. Apple was discontinuing it’s service and I loved using iWeb and all the features. The kids even had their own site named iBartolome Web Show.

I had already been blogging for about two years after completing the “post everyday for a year” challenge I came across. I started off thinking my blogging would be a public journal of sorts; an expansion of thoughts I posted on Twitter. This was before Twitpix and Instagram and around the time Facebook was swarmed with everyone in the entire world!

I had finished re-watching Firefly and finally gotten to watch the Serenity movie so pulling a phrase or quote from the series seemed like a great idea. It describes how I like to portray my life. As if everything is going along pretty well with just a few occasions of slight turbulence. Of course really, it could all explode!

The key is to remain calm, as if we were just having a regular day. Shrug off the negative, focus on the positive, accept the definition of interesting as “Oh God, oh God, we’re going to die” and make the most of it because really, life wouldn’t be living if their weren’t any turbulence.

Today’s assignment for Blogging 101 was to “Edit your title and tagline.”

I’m keeping my title. I did edit the tagline.

It does occur to me that my explanation of the title and the title itself may lead readers to expect crazy, disastrous stories from my life. That will happen some of the time. I think of it this way: Remember when we had land lines? Phones without caller ID? If you had called me early in the morning. Not dead in the middle of the night, but around the time I should probably be up and about getting ready to be productive. Of course I’m not awake, however, if you phoned, I answered. I answered with the most perky, wide awake voice I could muster. I also claimed I was awake already. Yup, that’s what this blog has been. Even with the title, I have shared pretty much the good stuff. Perhaps I will share more of the turbulent now that I have revisited my title. I can already think of a few topics:

  • KidC’s college aspirations and how we will pay for it
  • My job position ending in June
  • Communication issues between the DH and me
  • The relationship I don’t have with my sister
  • Home repairs that cost a fortune
Gracious, my life is full of turbulence. Maybe Serenity would be a better title!


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Revisiting the Reason

I’d like to be more focused and identify the “voice” of my blog and decided to sign up Blogging 101 offered by Word Press. The first “assignment” of the year is to share “Who I am and why I’m here” as well as “What are you about and why should people read your blog?”

My name is Christina.

I am a wife, mom, daughter.
I am a teacher, administrator, volunteer.

I procrastinate, plan, dream.
I direct, correct, clean.

I blog to share my thoughts and observations beyond the quick status updates and tweets and pictures.

I blog to document my life and use the public forum to improve my writing skill because a personal journal would have terrible spelling, incredibly long sentences, and isolate my feelings when really, sharing with the world is something of a legacy. (Yeah, I’m full of myself!)

My writing is pretty G-rated. Everything I write I’d be fine with my children reading. I’d be fine with my employer reading. I strive to be upbeat. I strive to not judge or create controversy. I do strive to encourage introspection and reflection.

I struggle with commenting on current issues and ultimately ask myself how my writing would help or add positivity to the discussion. That often leads me to not write about something as this platform is not conducive to a fair, empathetic discussion about polarizing topics. If you know me, you should know where I stand on issues and what I believe. If you want to know, just ask. Be prepared for a sincere answer that may contradict popular opinion. Be prepared that it will not change the way I strive to have mutual respect for everyone.

I would love for more people to comment on my thoughts. I would love for more people to read my blog! I will consider this blog a success when I make it other someone else’s Blogroll because they believe their own readers would enjoy reading my blog.

I work very hard to keep an even keel going in my life – with my marriage, my family, my job. That is never, ever what really happens. Slight Turbulence is the name of my blog because first I LOVE Firefly and most things Sci/Fi and second because the slight turbulence in my life could at any moment explode — it is with humor, love and support of family and friends, and my moral compass guided by the Bible and my relationship with God, the ship sails on!


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My Deciding Jar

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My Deciding Jar

My last blog post was about a Happiness Jar. Tonight I’m sharing my Deciding Jar. It was a gift from my girls (KidI and KidA). It contains about 100 slips of paper with QR Codes on each slip. The way it works is that I will scan the code to determine how much I will pay for their foot massages.

Two years ago, KidA thought it would be a neat idea to start a “loyalty card” for her services. She would punch my card every time I got and paid for a foot massage. Let me establish her skills at foot massages — she is incredible. Not only does she firmly massage all parts of the foot, she also will massage for a long time. At a certain point, I figured she should be rewarded for her skill and she set her price at $4 for a 30-minute massage. It is a great deal. Sometimes, it ends up being only 10 minutes per foot because she’ll get carried away in conversation or she’ll focus more on what is on television. She also insists on starting on a fifteen minute interval so that she ends “properly.” So I’ll have to sit and wait until it is 8:15 or let her stay past her bedtime to end at 9:15.

So I was happily getting my feet massages and paying her pretty regularly about once a week when she came up with the loyalty card. I was not very diligent about getting it punched. I had no idea what I would get if it was completely punched. Then last January KidA announced that all the punches were done, revealing my prize — half off massages for the rest of the year! Winner!

She admitted that she thought I’d finish the card back in October or maybe November. That would leave only a month or two of the half off price. None the less, all last year, I got my massages for only $2!

This year, she was a little more savvy and my discount ended at the stroke of midnight on the last day of 2014. No matter, I now have this ingenious “Deciding Jar” to give me the possibility of deal. Plus, KidI is in on the massages so really, I would have to say, a pretty great Christmas gift for mommy!

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The Happiness Jar

Improvised tickle tool

A few years ago, Elizabeth Gilbert (Eat, Pray, Love author) encouraged fans to start their own Happiness Jars as she had done. She would write the best moments of her day on random pieces of paper and store them in a jar. Since I want to grow my writing skills, I’m looking for focus, inspiration, routine, basically anything to help me get going.

It is about 8:40 PM on the first day of 2015. I’m contemplating reminding the girls that their bedtime is 9 o’clock. I’m also taking the time to determine my best moment of the day.

Was it returning home from our four-day staycation? Vacationing is fun. It always reminds you of things you truly appreciate back at home. Things like strong water pressure in the shower. Or a full kitchen with spices, condiments, and utensils. Familiar sounds and all my clothes, shoes, and toiletries (because the DH always encourages us to “pack light.”

Maybe it was heading to the Tolentino Pavilion (aka Auntie Cindy’s house) for a late lunch with her family. Good food, great conversation, high spirits because it is a new year. Added plus that the second cousins all get along and actually put down their mobile devices and interacted with each other.

I could think of a few more moments in contention for “the best” however, I think it would have to be as I sat on the couch reading through Flipboard articles and the DH declared “One minute!” At that, KidI jumped up and started an attempt to make her daddy laugh. KidA soon joined in to find his tickle spot. At the last possible second, the DH laughed loudly and the girls called themselves champions as they continued to laugh as KidC and I watched their craziness. That moment, right there. My family. Enjoying themselves. Together. Best moment of January 1, 2015.

Happy New Year everyone!