We’ve had a string of bad dreams over the last week and it’s making me realize that having adult problems sure makes me feel old.

Audrey woke up Saturday morning and told me that she had a nightmare. I asked her what it was and she told me, “I don’t want to talk about it,” and flat-out refused to discuss it any further. Her resolve is insane! Later, I overheard her telling Tyler about it while we were driving to Monster Jam. She told him about how Pepper, our black lab-mix (interesting how I call her a black lab-mix, instead of a pit bull-mix), was on fire and burned to death. She struggled to say it outloud and it was clear that she was on the verge of tears.

Tyler, possibly in an attempt at making her feel better, told her that it wasn’t real and how he had a nightmare a couple nights before that. He dreamt that people had broken into our house and were trying to kill us.

As I think back to my childhood, I remember having a recurring nightmare about a 50 foot tall Frankenstein’s Monster chasing me through my elementary school. His feet would crash through the roof and rubble exploded all around me. Inevitably, the nightmare would nearly always transition to me running away from the same monster, but normal-sized this time, through my backyard. But the backyard was a swamp and I could neither run fast nor scream. It was terrifying and haunted me for a long time. I wonder if I’ve ever shared that with my parents; they may not even be aware of this childhood trauma.

But as an adult, it’s different. I had a dream that was mentally horrible for me a few nights ago and felt like a nightmare at the time. I’m in my car, at a stoplight. It feels as if the light has been red for longer than it should and that I’ve been sitting still for a near lifetime. Finally, the light goes green and I hammer on the gas pedal. But just as the front bumper of my car enters the intersection, it happens… I see that the light didn’t actually turn green. It was the left turn signal that went green. I slam on the brake pedal and screech to a stop. All eyes are on me as I sit, utterly embarrassed, waiting for the traffic signal to turn green. It was mortifying. Why my brain interpreted this as a nightmare is beyond me, but it certainly elicited those emotions from me.

And then it happened over and over again. The exact same thing. I’d get to the next light, sit there, see a green light, hit the gas, realize it’s the left turn signal, slam the brakes, sit embarrassed and wanting to die…. wash, rinse, repeat. Oh, the humanity!!!! The only thing that could have topped it is if Frankenstein’s monster was sitting in the passenger seat laughing at me with his stupid giant feet.

Monster Jam!!

Okay, wait… that picture was just the bait to get you to keep reading…. I mean… who can deny the adorableness shown here? The kids too, of course.

I found out recently that Monster Jam (the Triple Threat Series!!!) was going to be in town soon. By “in town”, I mean about 45 minutes away, but who’s keeping track? When I mentioned to Sarah that I wanted to take Tyler to it, she asked why I wasn’t going to bring Audrey. I had assumed that it wouldn’t be of interest to her, but boy was I wrong. Sarah wasn’t interested in all the loud noises and mayhem, so three tickets were promptly purchased…. then…. we…. had…. to… wait… forever! But finally, the day arrived. The kids woke up a little slowly on this day, as evidenced here, which has the potential to cast a very dark cloud on the entire day…. as any parent could attest to… but some delicious Raisin Bran took care of those concerns, because they were all smiles just shortly afterwards.

They could. not. wait. to see Grave Digger!

For an event like this, I can’t imagine sitting in the first available rows. Needing to sweep your view from left to right just sounds ugh, but maybe that’s the adult in me talking (get off my lawn you brats!!). So, we got the family-friendly priced (i.e. cheap, because I’m a working class person!) seats and had a fantastic view.

Audrey took an interesting approach with her ear muffs and pigtails, but darnit she was adorable!

Audrey was VERY excited to find out that two of the drivers were women. Above is “El Toro Loco”, driven by a woman with bright purple hair. Given Audrey’s affinity for pink and purple hair, there was an immediate connection.

El Toro Loco didn’t disappoint during the “wheelie” competition, either. Well, not until her truck just completely shut down and had to be towed off the arena. Video below, click the play button.

And Grave Digger? Poor, poor Grave Digger? The Monster Jam gods were not looking favorably upon the obvious crowd favorite. During the donut competition… well… this happened… click play again.

They got him stood back up but then this happened during the freestyle competition….

The only thing that could possibly redeem this travesty would be if something bad happened to Max-D, the only other truck to give Grave Digger a run for his money (and currently number two in the overall standings for this season). The gods smiled upon Tyler’s wish (even though Max-D still won the day’s events).

The drive home wasn’t bad at all either.

Sadly Amazing


Has it really been a year and a half since I’ve posted something here? Is anybody even listening any longer?

It’s unfortunate, because there’s been a heck of a lot going on over the last 18 months. We moved from Indiana to Michigan, although I’ve posted about that already… I think. Yeah, definitely. I’d like to say that we’re completely settled into our house, but we still have boxes here and there – you know, against the wall of the basement, in the corner of the bedroom, tucked away in a closet, up in the rafters of the garage – with…. with… well, with stuff inside them. Just… stuff.

I’m also back in school, completely determined to finish up my degree, for a number of reasons. First, and foremost, to set an example for the kiddos. It’s important for them to know the value of higher education and that it’s going to be expected of them to do the same. Lead by example! Next, because there’s not much more I can do at work without a degree. I love what I do and do what I love, but the only way to open up more opportunities is by completing what I’ve started. Lastly, because if I don’t do it now, I never will. It’s hard enough to dedicate the time now with everything going on. I can only imagine how hard it’d be if I waited until the kids are in gymnastics, soccer, baseball, or dance that require my presence multiple days a week.

There’s so much I want to share… so much that I can’t convey with a two or three sentence status update on FaceBook. Like, about that time just a couple weeks ago when Audrey, three and a half (if I don’t mention “and a half”, she gets very stern with me and corrects me of her proper age), decided that she was going to perform some complex math problems. I’m very proud at the intelligence that both of my kids exhibit, so imagine my joy, and overwhelming pride when Audrey lays this gem of an addition problem on me: “Daddy plus crazy equals fart.”

But, like I said way up there at the top… there’s been a heck of a lot going on over the last 18 months. It’s so terribly difficult to sit down, reflect on the day, and spew something coherent and, hopefully, witty into a blog post with… well… with so much stuff going on… Just… stuff.