To Put It All Out There

“Be still when you have nothing to say; when genuine passion moves you, say what you've got to say, and say it hot.”

Monday, May 30, 2011

Wow! I can't believe how long it's been!

Wow, I cannot believe how long it has been since I last wrote on my blog. I truly don't know where the time has gone. Well, I do but that's for later and upcoming posts.

I sat today and flipped through my blog - I really did write a lot on here and am proud of some of what I wrote. I could tell you where I sat and wrote each post and what sort of mood I was in. Funny how I never forgot that.

Let me start by telling you that my life has, yet again, taken turns that I did not see coming. Turns that have been for the better and some that have left me heartbroken and bent. However, with each new step I have found myself in I am always reminded that this is a journey to find me. I have been on this journey now for thirty-two years. It's funny how so many women hate to admit their age. Why?? Of all the things in life there are to be ashamed of why would you be ashamed of that? It's a number. It's the time that you've spent trying to do this thing called life! I love being thirty-two. It means that yes, I did survive my teen years without being strangled by my mother and I even survived the dreaded twenties and that time when all you want to do is find your place.

I'm still not 100% positive that I know where I belong yet and maybe that's the whole point. Maybe, just maybe, the point is to always be looking. To never just settle. Maybe I'm supposed to be on this quest and do what I can as much as I can!!

Well, no matter how you want to say it I think I'm finally at a point where I can start writing again and actually have something to say worth writing about. So much has happened I cannot wait to fill you in!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Protecting Americans Or Restricting Freedoms?

I have read and re-read this article several times. I, being Christian in my beliefs, at first moved past it - to be completely honest. At first it was the situation of "Doesn't affect me move on", however the more I sat here the more it kind of played on my brain. I understand protecting our freedom against terrorists. My brother serves in the military, no one knows better the sacrifice of our US military. However, since the Fort Hood shooting I have feared for our Islamic Americans. I could very easily see a repeat of the Red Scare here. History has a way of repeating itself. I am eager to see what plays out here exactly.

NEW YORK – Federal prosecutors took steps Thursday to seize four U.S. mosques and a Fifth Avenue skyscraper owned by a nonprofit Muslim organization long suspected of being secretly controlled by the Iranian government.
In what could prove to be one of the biggest counterterrorism seizures in U.S. history, prosecutors filed a civil complaint in federal court against the Alavi Foundation, seeking the forfeiture of more than $500 million in assets.
The assets include bank accounts; Islamic centers consisting of schools and mosques in New York City, Maryland, California and Houston; more than 100 acres in Virginia; and a 36-story glass office tower in New York.
Confiscating the properties would be a sharp blow against Iran, which has been accused by the U.S. government of bankrolling terrorism and trying to build a nuclear bomb.
A telephone call and e-mail to Iran's U.N. Mission seeking comment were not immediately answered. Nor was a call to the Alavi Foundation.
It is extremely rare for U.S. law enforcement authorities to seize a house of worship, a step fraught with questions about the First Amendment right to freedom of religion.
The action against the Shiite Muslim mosques is sure to inflame relations between the U.S. government and American Muslims, many of whom are fearful of a backlash after last week's Fort Hood shooting rampage, blamed on a Muslim American major.
The mosques and the skyscraper will remain open while the forfeiture case works its way through court in what could be a long process. What will happen to them if the government ultimately prevails is unclear. But the government typically sells properties it has seized through forfeiture, and the proceeds are sometimes distributed to crime victims.
Prosecutors said the Alavi Foundation managed the office tower on behalf of the Iranian government and, working with a front company known as Assa Corp., illegally funneled millions in rental income to Iran's state-owned Bank Melli. Bank Melli has been accused by a U.S. Treasury official of providing support for Iran's nuclear program, and it is illegal in the United States to do business with the bank.
The U.S. has long suspected the foundation was an arm of the Iranian government; a 97-page complaint details involvement in foundation business by several top Iranian officials, including the deputy prime minister and ambassadors to the United Nations.
"For two decades, the Alavi Foundation's affairs have been directed by various Iranian officials, including Iranian ambassadors to the United Nations, in violation of a series of American laws," U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said in a statement.
There were no raids Thursday as part of the forfeiture action. The government is simply required to post notices of the civil complaint on the property.
As prosecutors outlined their allegations against Alavi, the Islamic centers and the schools they run carried on with normal activity. The mosques' leaders had no immediate comment.
Parents lined up in their cars to pick up their children at the schools within the Islamic Education Center of Greater Houston and the Islamic Education Center in Rockville, Md. No notices of the forfeiture action were posted at either place as of late Thursday.
At the Islamic Institute of New York, a mosque and school in Queens, two U.S. marshals came to the door and rang the bell repeatedly. The marshals taped a forfeiture notice to the window and left a large document sitting on the ground. After they left a group of men came out of the building and took the document.
The fourth Islamic center marked for seizure is in Carmichael, Calif.
The skyscraper, known as the Piaget building, was erected in the 1970s under the shah of Iran, who was overthrown in 1979. The tenants include law and investment firms and other businesses.
The sleek, modern building, last valued at $570 million to $650 million in 2007, has served as an important source of income for the foundation over the past 36 years. The most recent tax records show the foundation earned $4.5 million from rents in 2007.
Rents collected from the building help fund the centers and other ventures, such as sending educational literature to imprisoned Muslims in the U.S. The foundation has also invested in dozens of mosques around the country and supported Iranian academics at prominent universities.
If federal prosecutors seize the skyscraper, the Alavi Foundation would have almost no way to continue supporting the Islamic centers, which house schools and mosques. That could leave a major void in Shiite communities, and hard feelings toward the FBI, which played a big role in the investigation.
The forfeiture action comes at a tense moment in U.S.-Iranian relations, with the two sides at odds over Iran's nuclear program and its arrest of three American hikers.
But Michael Rubin, an expert on Iran at the American Enterprise Institute, said the timing of the forfeiture action was probably a coincidence, not an effort to influence Iran on those issues.
"Suspicion about the Alavi Foundation transcends three administrations," Rubin said. "It's taken ages dealing with the nuts and bolts of the investigation. It's not the type of investigation which is part of any larger strategy."
Legal scholars said they know of only a few cases in U.S. history in which law enforcement authorities have seized a house of worship. Marc Stern, a religious-liberty expert with the American Jewish Congress, called such cases extremely rare.
The Alavi Foundation is the successor organization to the Pahlavi Foundation, a nonprofit group used by the shah to advance Iran's charitable interests in America. But authorities said its agenda changed after the fall of the shah.
In 2007, the United States accused Bank Melli of providing services to Iran's nuclear and ballistic missile programs and put the bank on its list of companies whose assets must be frozen. Washington has imposed sanctions against various other Iranian businesses.
Associated Press writers Samantha Gross in New York City, Juan A. Lozano in Houston, investigative researcher Randy Herschaft in New York City and AP photographer Jacquelyn Martin in Maryland contributed to this report.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Infiltration of the opposing force begin!!

As a single mother there are two things that will always remain true in my life: 1. I will never be a soccer mom & 2. I will always be one of "those" women!! So I was surprised to find myself invited to join the PTA board at my son's school. I was now a foreigner in a strange land. I found myself surrounded by housewives whose greatest ambition in life was to further their children's position in school by being there ALL the time. I have now attended two PTA meetings and can now break down for you the oppositional team.

You have the social climber. If her life would have taken her in any other direction she would be sitting on a corporate board somewhere wearing a man shirt and barking orders at terrified interns. She is exceedingly kind and funny to the point of just being creepy.

You have your back stabbers. Oh you know the ones. Smile, giggle, wink, and get info. They are snooping, gabbing, and constantly trying to outshine and outshoot their "friends". These were your popular girls, your cheerleaders, your pep squad team. Each tries as they might to gain popularity with every single person. Unfortunately, at our age it is nothing more than an insecure unhappy woman trying to make herself feel better at the expense of anyone else she deems as competition.

There is, of course, the women who do not know how to do anything besides have children. These women generate children at roughly the same rate as most people change their underwear. They have so many children it becomes apparent that they should have a school to themselves. These women make me exhausted just watching them kiss their children goodbye. How does she keep track of them all? I would have, for sure, left one at a mall, airport, or at some random spot in my town! It must take them three hours just to say goodnight to all of their spawn!

There is the mother with the perfect amount of beautiful little children, who has the golden retriever, and white picket fence. She is just "DEELIGHHTED" to be taken advantage of. She loves to bake and clean. Her kids all have their hair parted in just the right place, their faces are always Kool-Aid mustache free, and their shirts are always EXACTLY the right size. Somehow I find myself trying desperately not to gag whenever her prissy little ass walks into the room.

I love Mrs. What Did You Say? She's a blast to mess with. She only joined the PTA so she could get the dirt on the school, teachers, administrators, and children. She is quick to pass along a rumor or to dig up dirt on Mrs. Second Grade Teacher who happened to be found having a little fun in the broom closet with Mr. MARRIED Gym Teacher. I think I will tell her something about myself and see how long it takes to get back to me!! That should be fun.

Then you have Mrs. I Know EVERYONE. Oh I love her. Mention a name, any name, and she instantly knows them. The Pope...he blessed my new home! Prince William...had tea with him last Tuesday. God...oh yes he helps me wash my floors. It's truly amusing. I try desperately not to just yell out random names (Farcus Dingas for instance) just to see if she says anything. I believe I will test her at the next meeting! Let's see how many people she truly knows!!

But the ultimate, the best, the ones that are just downright comical are the ones that have their children in EVERYTHING and these children happen to be super children. They are able to beat any child at a foot race, receive top marks in every class, and leap tall buildings in a single bound!! I have to patiently sit and listen to how little miss Sally scored in her last soccer game or how little Sam did at swimming practice. How they "suffer" so horribly because they had to downsize from a full year Y membership to pay monthly. They have so much going out to insure their children are in every single extra curricular activity to come down the pike that there just isn't anything extra. You know their son. Bobby. He's a darling boy who happens to play the piano, knows how to start a campfire using just two sticks, he's a brilliant soccer player, a green belt in karate, he swims like a fish, kicks a football further than anyone else, and have I mentioned he came up with a alternate theory of relativity? He happens to look like the backside of some scrawny mutt but he's truly an amazing little boy!! These happen to be the same women who have a five bedroom house, drive a BMW, and happen to carry a purse that is worth more than my entire wardrobe. They better you no matter what you have. Possessions and impressions mean more than anything else. These are the women that in twenty years will still have the tits and ass of a teenager!! It truly is sad to witness.

There are those of course that despite a better monetary position than myself remain amazingly true. They are hard working men and women that are part of the PTA for the benefit of having a say in the running of their children's school. These are the people I feel sorry for because they are surrounded by fools. Fools that wouldn't know how to run an organization if the blueprint was laid at their feet. I will infiltrate. I will play the games. And in the end I will remain the same person I always have to find the humor in the most humorless of situations!!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

I woke up today...

I woke today to find my baby a boy. I know that sounds odd to say but truly it has hit me like I didn't think it would. How can I explain this in terms for all to understand? When my son was born I was in a fuzz, to say the least. I had found myself a 21 year old mother who was struggling in a relationship I was no more prepared for than I was for motherhood. For the next thirteen months I would juggle work, motherhood, and the struggles of an abusive and controlling man. I loved my son's father, this I do believe, but I painted him into a corner. I have accepted my role as it is. I know there is no excuse for a man to ever strike a woman or even be tempted to, however, I knew his history getting into that situation and I was trying to make a round key fit into a square hole. He was a fatherless child, a young man left to fend for himself in a world that didn't coddle or cradle him. He was scared, as was I, but he let his fear conquer himself and was left doing nothing! When I say nothing I truly mean nothing. No working, cleaning, and basic human emotions? You mine as well forget those. And so I painted him into a corner. I begged and pleaded, I yelled and nagged and like all animals if trapped they lash out. I should have known it would happen but I had never been adult before and I wanted his help. In my life men worked, they provided for their family and my job was to take care of my son and smile at all the right times, that was the role of a woman. At least that was the notion. But my life did not go in that direction and so after thirteen months it came down to how many mouths I could feed. Two is easier to take care of than three. I asked him to leave, I begged him to leave, I literally threw him out, but like a bad disease he kept coming back. I was young and now see my errors but finally I looked at my son and realized that's who he'd become and I left that man for good. So I spent my son's baby years in a fuzz, like I said.
I regret that I missed it all. I hardly noticed his first step, his first coo, and don't remember half of what other mothers remember. Does that make me a bad mom? I don't know but I hate that that is the way it was. I was babysitting for the first two years and spent a lot of time wondering when his mother would come and get him. Once the fuzz lifted, once the clouds parted and I could see the sun again it all became clear. I was his mom, not mother which is too harsh of a word for the relationship we now share, I was a mom. And so I have devoted the last six years of his life to solely being mommy. We share a special bond not easily mistaken for anything else. I laugh with him more than anyone else and after eight hours at work all I want to do is see him. He makes me mad, he makes me sad, but that is what all mom's feel. And so I think that through it all I have been in survival mode for so long I have missed his steps. Now he's eight and I am just trying to catch up. Eight. What a delightful age. He has more mood swings than most women I know and he's becoming independent which is killing me slowly. He wanders in the mall, he wants to cut his own path through a crowd, and I am left standing back yelling "Wait give me a minute to catch my breath."
I wonder than if all mom's feel this. Is it just me because I did miss so much? Do all mom's feel the sharp pain in their heart when their child asks them to not walk them into class anymore? Do all mom's hang on a little longer to the hugs that are so embarrassing for them to give? What about the mom's whose child can't do those things? I guess for me that is what makes it all so sweet. There are mothers whose children cannot hug, or walk to class, or cut their way through a crowd. Children that cannot fight back, they don't have the health to do so. That's what makes it all so seem okay. He's healthy and happy. He loves being him. And it's all because I didn't decide to lay down and take my fate quietly. I fought for him. I fought for me. I fought to provide a life worth living. Hug your child today, hang on even when they try to pry you off, hang on. Realize that even through tantrums and sleepless nights it will soon pass. Realize that the baby stages wizz by so fast that one day you will be standing on the sidewalk watching them walk away. Eight. How did I get here?

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Merry Christmas

I wanted to take this time to wish everyone a very merry christmas and a happy new year. Enjoy the time with family and friends and realize that the feeling of christmas doesn't have to end.


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