Monday, June 28, 2010

I've Got a Great Man

And he's not even here to defend himself!

I've got a lot of respect for a man who fulfills his commitments. That doesn't make him perfect, but it does make it easier to overlook the little annoying things he may do. And I've got one of those men.

Bryan was divorced just a couple weeks after I met him. That's nearly 15 yrs ago. In May, his daughter, who turned 18 last fall, graduated high school. That heralded the end of his child support obligation. He didn't have a perfect record, especially in those early years, of being current or always on time, but he did catch up on all those payments and has been current ever since.

He called the state offices back in February to see what had to be done to make sure the deductions from his paycheck stopped at the right time, and was told he didn't have to do anything. It was in the computer and would stop on time.

But Bryan works for the Federal Gov't. Sad. They need a specific form from AZ in order to stop deducting the amount from his pay. And guess what? AZ didn't send them the order to desist. Last week, Bryan got a check in the mail for the amount of child support taken from his check.

That's right, people. AZ is receiving money from Bryan's TSA checks and issuing it, in check form, to him. And mailing it to him.

Dollar signs of indignation are going off in my head. Imagine the money wasted by the state of AZ child support enforcement division because of this. I can't imagine this is the only time it's happened. The obligation to pay has ended, but the money keeps being taken from the checks and sent to AZ. They don't send it to the payee, since the obligation has ended, so they issue a check that is mailed back to the payer. Now multiply that by 50 states. Insanity, thy name is gov't.

Okay, so it's a downer for us, too. It's nice when an obligation is done to be able to close the mental file and have it be over. Now we have to wait. And since Bryan is camping this weekend, he's going to have to wait to make his phone calls and try to get the wheels squeaking along next week. Sigh.

Oh, and the only way he can contact his particular caseworker directly is via fax. They won't give out her phone number because of the propensity some paying fathers have to be belligerent.

Rant over. I just had to get that out somewhere. I understand the need for the noncustodial parent to help pay for their child's needs. I may have mentioned it, but my parents divorced when I was 4 and my mom's biggest complaint was my dad never paid or didn't pay it all. And I know there are a ton of deadbeat dads out there, and that we're all lucky to have been in this situation and have it work out so well.

But now I'm ready for it to be over.

And this blog background may need to be changed. I reminds me of chocolate and makes me hungry. ;)

Friday, June 11, 2010

Peek A Boo

I don't make it on to this blog like I know I should. There's something off in the balance, because I'm a mother first and foremost. I could claim that, between my two jobs and Mommy-ing, I don't have time to blog about it--but the truth is I've been kind of dry on topics. Sometimes it's hard to see from the trenches. :)

At the end of May, we took a family trip down to Phoenix to see my stepdaughter graduate high school. AMAZING. Oh, and the ceremony was good too. Seriously, though, that girl just rocks my world. I was not so driven and motivated at her age. I felt lucky just to have survived that long. But she's got a plan, and great grades, and scholarships--the world is literally at her feet. And she's gorgeous to boot. I'm so proud of her, and so happy for her.

On the same trip, we met up with Papa and sent my number 2 son with him to Oklahoma for a visit. This kid is in HEAVEN being spoiled by his grandparents. I'm pretty sure they're having a good time, too. I love all my kids, but this one has a special way about him. He's so gentle and caring and compassionate I know he's not just mooching their attention and not giving anything back. And he was so excited Sunday when we called him and I said we'd call him every Sunday. I like knowing we made the right choice. He was supposed to go last year to visit, but I just don't think he was emotionally ready. This year it's working out great.

My youngest also graduated kindergarten this year. She's now bragging to everyone that she's a first grader. Her teacher didn't have enough room for all the nice things she had to say about her. What a fun way to wrap up my procession of children. (remind of that when she's 12 and driving me crazy lol)

And, even though I get next to nothing done writing-wise, I do love summer. I love having the kids out of school, if only so I can appreciate it that much more when they go back. Kidding. I think. This August, all 5 of them will be in school all day long. Supposedly that will free up time during the day for me to write--but since I still have the day care baby and her terrible two's, maybe not.

My remaining twin is coping well with his brother being in Oklahoma. He sometimes has that lost look about him, like he's missing an arm or half his brain, but most of the time he behaves like himself. I hesitate to say normally--that's such a loaded word.

And my other daughter, of course, is still a challenge to decipher. Today she wants to be a rock star and perform for her new friends, even though yesterday she freaked out when the boy downstairs told her he likes her. I just looked at her and said, "What do you expect? You're adorable. It's going to happen." So she shrugged and decided to be okay with it. Later she told me it's tough being the friend of a boy, because everyone else thinks he's your boyfriend. Sigh. I remember that all too well.

My oldest son is the topic of my Tooele Mommies blog post today. He's all fired up to be an 8th grader, and didn't hesitate to point out when he's a freshman in high school his big sister will be a sophomore in college. Yes, son--I know you're growing up. I still remember you when you were tiny, so don't push it. :)

Oh, and I got to see a movie this week! You probably have no idea how rare that is. My mom took me to see, of all things, Shrek Ever After. Cute, and a nice tie up of the series. Hopefully they won't push their luck and try to do another one.