blondebeaker: (Default)
So Kiddo is coming home tomorrow from his cross country hell trip (as he's been calling it) with his dad. Grump backed out of the "pay for you're own food" bullshit thanks to his mother. I knew I wouldn't get through to Grump but his own mother found out through kiddo and she was seething. Also I told Bug that if he needs to he could text me anytime and rant....even swear if he has to. (He rarely swears but I figured if I give permission to let it fly because letting him vent will probably help and it has)

His visit with his Paternal Granddad went well and he enjoyed the visit. Apparently his Granddad is very impressed with his BBQing skills on the last night and cooked everyone dinner.

But other than that its been a shitty time. They're basically driving both ways non stop or with as few overnight stays as possible so Bug has been sleeping in the van and every time they do a pit stop everyone has to get out and walk a bit. Doesn't matter if you were sleeping. And when there is full stoppage they camp and Grump forgot (or was too cheap) to bring air mattresses or camping pads so its just the sleeping bag on the tent floor.

But what has Bug really upset is that his birthday just came and went and neither his father or stepmom acknowledged it. Not even a "Happy Birthday." He's hoping that when they get home there might be a present or special meal but he's not holding his breath. I got a text from him that night saying:

"I feel like I was brought along on this trip to fulfill legal obligations from the custody agreement, not because they wanted to."

Poor Bug. :( I feel so bad for him and so fucking angry at his father over this.

I told Bug it may not be big and splashy, but Matt and I are going to try our best to make a good birthday for him when he gets home, even if its a bit late. And he knows that his Grandmother will probably have something done up for him too, along with his War of 1812 Reenacting group. But still when its one of your own parents, it hurts deep.
blondebeaker: (Default)
Fucking pissed at a "friend" on FB. She pretty much said that people like me don't deserve the $15/hr min wage hike. I called her out on it and she goes "Not you, just the ones who are shitty at their jobs." and gave an example how a Tim Horton's employee messed up her order. (She is a shitty customer and I've called her out several times about her behavior towards fast food workers) and then utters the words:

"Wage increases, even from the gov't should be based on performance not just for everyone." along with the whole fearmongering OMG everywhere is going to install self checkouts and inflation is going to skyrocket, jobs will be lost, etc. And she knows its going to happen because she runs a dept at her company and handles their finances (girl you work for the Wal-Mart of security guard firms and its

I went off on her. Like fuck me for wanting a decent wage and fuck everyone else who may not be able to work jobs that pay higher right? But she's run a dept and handled their finances so she knows how this works.

I'm being super petty and pissy about this but I hope the Ontario economy fucking booms from this so I can make her eat her fucking words.

(I really should just unfriend her but she rarely posts so I'm leaving it for now.)

Before I hit post edit: Wow some of her friends are none too pleased with her either.

But yeah Ontario is getting 15/hr min. wage!! Come Jan 2017 it will be 14 and then the year after that (hopefully because elections are coming soon) 15! When I saw that news alert I started to cry. You have no idea how much it will help us, and many others.
blondebeaker: (Default)
 I'm seeing a lot of people on my FB having issues with their kid's teacher's lately and I'm in that pile too. Kiddo's music teacher is just realizing NOW that he may not be a good fit for Advanced Music despite me and kiddo telling her this SINCE THIS PAST OCT.

Seriously this woman has only talked to me once and that was to call me with her concern that Kiddo may have anxiety. Wasn't there for parent/teacher night (she was on leave for that month due to a death I think) Tried to call and set up a meeting. Nothing. We've been with Guidance and the VP/Principal for meetings set up with her and she's been a no-show every time. Oh wait there was a mass email about the solos saying they were not exams and music exam will be in June.

And then there is that whole music solo thing I mention in my last post. I found out at 4:30pm last Friday, a long weekend Friday, while getting ready to go home from work that this solo IS AN EXAM (Despite the email mentioned above) when she called me to yell at me why my kid wasn't in on Thurs. (he fell and hurt his on Weds. spent all day Thurs at the Dr.'s and xray clinic...was a sprain big toe and he's all good) and any missed exam needs a note to reschedule. And it needs to be in for 2nd period Tuesday.

I told her that I cannot guarantee that the note will be brought in by 2nd period but it will be brought in personally by me that day as quickly as possible due to the fact she CALLED ON LATE FRIDAY AFTERNOON OF A LONG WEEKEND so the earliest I can get it is on Tues, and what ever time the Dr can slip me in. No telling me to go to just any ol' walk in is not going to help because we can lose our Dr. if we use an office outside our healthcare network.


And poor kiddo is so stressed out that a simple problem with his phone reduced him to tears this evening. He's positive he's failed this class and will barely passed everything else (he's never failed anything in school and mentally its been hard on him this past year to present) and he's terrified of his father's reaction to this. Because any perceived fault or failure Grump sees? "Must come from your mother." (Lovely ain't it.)

I cannot wait until summer hits. Its when Kiddo will see the Dr. that specializes in teen mental health and medicine, we can start on the right path of getting him in a better place mentally and the new school year should (hopefully) be a better one.
blondebeaker: (pic#863787)
Bug is so stressed out about his music class he's in tears over it. He has to do a 4 minute solo of Ode to Joy on the xylophone. And because damn thing is a concert sized one it cannot be taken home. Only practice he can get on it is twenty minutes once a week after school because every other time is the bands. He's asked if practicing on a smaller one at home (we can borrow one from the library) would help and no one, I mean no one is giving us an answer to that. Which is driving me up the wall because dammit we need an answer!

Not only that they said he either needs a accompanist, either its a friend who can play music (none of his friends do) or the adult musician the school hired (but we need to pay 50 bucks for) or a CD of Ode to Joy. But the CD must be that of a xylophone playing the tune.

The poor kid feels like everything is working against him right now, and he is TERRIFIED of failing. So cue me and Matt trying to look anything of a recording of Ode to Joy on YouTube that is the whole song and on that damned instrument. We know that the Parkdale library does instrument borrowing and you can have it for 3 weeks and I'm going to make my way down and get the damn thing so he can practice.

I feel so frustrated and upset that he's having such a hard time right now in Gr. 9. the poor kid can't get a break right now.
blondebeaker: (Default)
Bug decided tonight to wear his sunglasses at night (song title intentional) when we went out to the bookstore.

You can see where this is going can't you?

The end of our parking lot is really dark and well, Bug walked into the side a parked black van, got really confused at what just happened to him, and then lifted the sunglasses up and remarked "Ooooh! So that's why you shouldn't wear them at night!"

I couldn't help it, but I burst out laughing. There were apologies after because, yeah, that is embarrassing.

Karma bit me in the butt shortly after because not only did I trip the stairs going into the store, I walked into door before opening it..
blondebeaker: (Default)
The kid just told me his Dad wants to do a cross country road trip this summer to see his Paternal Grandfather. Which I'm fine with, as I heard Ex-FiL is not doing to well health wise and it may be the last time he gets to see him.

And then goes on to say that his Dad wants him to start saving up his money because, a 14 1/2 year old, is expected to HELP PAY FOR GAS AND POSSIBLY HIS OWN FOOD.


Like what is he going to do if the kid has no money? Make him starve? Siphon gas from other cars? Yes I give him half of child tax credit** but that sure the hell is not enough to help fund a fucking trip from Ontario to British Columbia.

JFC, I almost started believing the man had a lick of common sense in him but holy God, I was wrong.

Also his  wife gifted the kid with a Fitbit for Easter. Kid like it and thinks its pretty cool because he's been wanting to keep track of his steps and activity. But me? Not impressed. They've made some comments to him about his weight** and activity levels since moving in with us and....I dunno, it bothers the hell out of me.

So yeah, Grump is still Grump. And as he approaches 40 he's getting worse.

Bug is going to meet with a Dr. next week who specializes in teen medicine and we're going to find out for sure if he has Anxiety. (One of his teachers said he hides it well from his friends and classmates, but she's picked up on a bunch of signs pointing to it.) Honestly it wouldn't surprise me if he does. Bug wants to be tested for ADHD because after a classmate gave a presentation on it during Health/Gym, Kiddo realized some of the signs mentioned apply to him, plus knowing his own Dad has ADD and even if he doesn't,he wants to be sure because he says feels that something in his brain isn't right (his words). I'm pretty proud of him for being that in tune with himself to notice. And noticing it before I did because I was so concerned with the possibility of him having an Anxiety disorder.

I really hope its nothing because I really don't want to deal with Grump about it since he refuses to acknowledge Bug has asthma. Despite the fact the pulmonologist that tested and diagnosed him also knew Grump's sister and was on the medical team that did her double lung transplant 10 years ago.

**When Bug moved in he was pretty skinny and soon found out that Grump was pretty strict on meal times,how much you could eat and how long you have to eat. When we first saw the Dr. to get a check up she thinks that while kiddo was eating pretty healthfully he just wasn't getting enough calories. So when he moved in with us and we're a bit looser with times and amounts his body went into "I gotta save every bit of this!" mode started gaining. Doc is not to concerned because he's still very healthy and its not an extreme amount of weight and thinks that once puberty goes into full swing he will drop the weight.
blondebeaker: (Default)
Welcome fellow former LJers!
blondebeaker: (Default)
[ profile] milk_and_glass was asking for ideas  about a 1890's Toronto Ward child and their life. I have one about my grandfather but it happened between 1915 and 1925 where Grampa (born 1910)was living in the East End of London and before he was sent to Canada. I'm going to use his name, Davey for this story. Hopefully she can glean some ideas from it since The Ward of Toronto and East End were quite similar as they were both dense slums with a high immigrant population.

Davey has been living on the streets of the East End of London for a bit at this point.  He's avoided being put in the Workhouse school, getting the Spanish Flu. And there was other fun stuff like TB and dysentery that ran through the area thanks to overcrowding and slummy conditions. To get food he would find odd jobs or possibly even resort to stealing food. But usually he would just head to the docks and ask if there was anything he could do for a few pennies or shillings.

 One of the jobs was to catch rats. The Foreman hand the Davey and his friends a sack and told them to find as many rats they could. A half penny per rat was the going rate. Off the kids go and eventually they find a bunch of rats and head back to the Foreman for their pay. Mr. Foreman would count how many they caught and then he would toss the dead rats into a nearby ditch before heading into the office to get the money.

 Seeing this Davey suddenly got an idea. Why not grab the tossed rats when the Foreman walked away, wait until near the end of the Foreman's workday and sell them back to him? That way the rats would settle back down, the gang didn't have to work as hard for a day or two. The only thing they would have to worry about is making sure the rats they were re-using were not too far gone. The gang agreed this was a brilliant plan! And off they went.

 This went on for most of the summer. The Foremen were none the wiser but was always amazed that kids found so many rats. "They must get them other places besides the docks," he probably thought. Either way he always kept his promise to pay them, and it keeps them busy and it’s doing the docks a service. Until one day after the rats were tossed into the ditch the Foreman suddenly came back and caught the kids grabbing the rats he just tossed.  "You cheeky little brats! You might have fooled me once, but never again!" (Grampa said this was what the man said, but I cannot remember the exact words)

The Foreman confiscated the sack of used rats, pulled his knife out and cut each of the rat's tails off and tossed them into the ditch. "There. Now let’s see you try and pull another fast one on me."  And that was the end of that. For that part of the docks.

 Davey and his friends would head over to other docks and offer their rat catching services to other companies. But this time they tweaked the plan that the used rats would be turned in at different locations instead of the same dock Foreman. This kept 5 or 6 boys girls fed for a good long time before they were caught by police or officials, probably for Truancy, and were sent to the Barnardo Home for Children in late 1924, early '25. A few months later Davey was sent to Canada.

 This is one of my favorite stories from my grandparents. The drunken duck story Gramma would tell us was the only one that topped it. This is probably one of the only things Grampa told us about his childhood other than living with Hiram Grey, the man who the Barnardo Home for Children matched him with. Anything else I know about the history of Home Children is through my own research.

July 2017

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