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My blog, my friend. My blog, my enemy. MY BLOG. Period.

My blog, my friend. My blog, my enemy. MY BLOG. Period.

I have had so many things to say but have found myself in a position I swore I would never be stuck in with this blog.  I find myself needing to censor myself.  I mean really, when do you ever see me put an “*”  in the middle of a word so it suddenly is not such a curse word after all.  I mean, really? (That is my next post but this one became too long.)

I guess it started when I found more and more people in my real life reading my blog.  Now, I was outed  years ago by a friend who loved the blog and shared it with friends at school.  That did not bother me.  They commented or admitted to reading it or just flat out didn’t care.  I could be myself.  That is what this blog is all about.  It doesn’t bother me that people I see on a daily basis read this.  I have nothing to hide.  Not exactly.  It is just that it becomes a one way street.  They are allowed into my private life and into my thoughts but I am not privy to theirs.  It seems…off balance.  You can know me, but I cannot know you.  That doesn’t so much work for me.

Oh, but on the humorous side of this, I did have a mom from the school who emailed me a few days ago.  You see– for those of you just joining us– I am the PTA president at the school of one of my kids.    Now, if you have been here for a while that statement is STILL making you laugh.  I get it.  I do!  But this email was classic.

Dear Jennifer, PTA President,

I came across your blog the other day. (It wasn’t hard to find.  You might want to think about not being so visible if you are taking on such a big volunteer role.  Especially when the kid is so young.)  However, I found a few posts that made me wonder how you must be feeling about your words now.  These posts are not very flattering to the PTA and now you stand up as their president. It seems a bit hipocritical [sic]. I wanted to know how you feel about the PTA now and if you take back what you said now that you are “the leader” of the “Stepfords”.


A Mom Out To Cause Trouble

Well, in answer to your question, pretty damn good.

Here is my response:

Dear Mom Trying to Cause Trouble,

I have two policies on my blog:  1) I do not delete a post UNLESS I have directly inflicted pain on someone unintentionally and 2) I do not say anything on my blog that I would not say to someone’s face. (Oh, and let’s throw in #3: No nude pictures. Of me.)

Thank you so much for pointing out these old posts!  I mean it!  It really reminds me what it felt like to be treated so badly and to feel so unwelcome.  Your email helps remind me I never want to make anyone who volunteers at the school feel that way.  You must be very caring to ensure that I am reminded of that bad time so that I can avoid it while I am in a position that holds at least a little bit of power.

Thank you so much for your concern and caring for our volunteers!

I look forward to seeing you at school,


For those of you who have been here a while, you are surely aware of what she is talking about.  For those of you who are new, here are links to the horrible, awful, no good posts I wrote.  Including trying to fake my own death to avoid the PTA.  (Again, I am not apologetic about my words.  I was working with women who were the Meanie Moms of the school and they had no problem excluding, belittling and bringing volunteers to tears.)

These posts (if you look at the year they were written) are old.  I still stand by them because I was treated in a manner that I hope a PTA volunteer at the school I am active in is NEVER, EVER treated.  It was a horrible time in my life and a horrible way to be treated by anyone.  Now?  Now I know I set myself up for mocking because of these old posts.  Do I care?  Sure!  I already feel like an outsider anyway. However, I am strong enough to take it.  I know that what I went through only made me more determined to make sure anyone who wants to volunteer is not only welcome, but praised for their work.  Whether it is one hour every other month or 15 hours a week.  They all matter.  They ALL deserve respect.  I am thankful for each of them!

So, Ms. Mom Trying To Cause Trouble, take your spite elsewhere.  If you want to volunteer, you are welcome to do so.  If you want to try to make me look bad?  Oh, honey, I do that enough on my own and really don’t need your help, thankyouverymuch.

Anyone else have stones?  Feel free to hurl them.  Trust me.  I can take it.

The cosmic shop vac that sucks in volunteers sucked me back in!

The cosmic shop vac that sucks in volunteers sucked me back in!

Yes, I will admit it. It happened. They sucked me back in. I am officially on the Executive Board of the PTA again.

(*I will pause now so that you can feel free to figure out the appropriate discipline action to take.*)

One minute I was hiding and playing dead in the hallways declaring something along the lines of hell freezing over before I went there again and then the SUCK-wattage was set on full blast with the volunteer suck-vac and there I stood with my volunteer sheet in hand agreeing to be the newsletter editor. Oh, but I did it much smarter this time.

First off, I have a co-editor. Share the duties. Share the blame. Share the scorn. (Poor friend of mine is probably going to be blackballed by association.)

Second, I am on the executive board and can speak my mind all I want and then I don’t even have to vote. That could sound bad, but if you think about it, it is good. I get to tell them when the ideas are stupid less than stellar, but since I don’t vote, I cannot be blamed for the stupid less than stellar ideas that pass.

Third, I am working with the majority of woman who are new to me. Meaning, the year of the HORROR That Is Not To Be Mentioned In My Home is from a time they either were not there or were not involved. Clean slate, baby.

Okay, hit me with it. I know you are ready to slam me with the “what the hell are you thinking” comments. Bring ’em on.

Hide your children! They got another one!

Hide your children! They got another one!

Let me tell you a story, kiddos.  Grab your blankets and some popcorn.  It is part humor, part horror and of course, with a moral.

Once upon a time there was a Mom whose first born had started kindergarten.  As soon as school started a woman who referred to herself as the PTA president phoned her.  “Are you in the house alone?!” (I kid.  She totally didn’t say that.) Though what she said was almost as scary.  “I would like you to be the kindergarten room parent.”

[cue horror theme music and screeching violins]

After several “No, really, no thank you. Not for me.  Don’t think so.  Uh-uh.  Not gonna happen” I found myself the kindergarten room parent.  In charge of all parties and all volunteers.  Having never had a child in public school before, I found myself in charge.  Miserably.

I learned after that year and changed my outgoing message on my answering machine to “Thank you for calling.  If you are calling in regards to volunteering, I will bring juice.”

Years later, I tried again.  This time on the Executive Board.  As the Membership Chair.  I took over from someone who left.  Bad move.  Bad position.  Bad year.  From then on out I took the stance of “Play dead when dealing with anyone from the PTA.” I have been known to throw myself on the floor and play dead to avoid being tagged as a volunteer.  The Stepfords…they scare me.

One of my good, close friends has been a Stepford in denial for quite a while.  “No, no…I am not a Stepford.  I just volunteer because I blah blah blah…” (I tuned out at this point.  Sort of like when Tom Cruise starts to talk about his knowledge of post partum depression or preach to me about Scientology.) I adore her, but day by day I see her inner Stepford coming out.  I am scared.  Hold me. 

Hang on, kiddos, this is where the horror comes in to play.

I got a phone call today.

“Are you in the house alone?” (Are you still falling for that?  What she said was much scarier!)

“They asked me to be PTA president.”

Okay, I think she might have said something else, but I was laughing and crying so hard I couldn’t hear another word. 

It happened.  They got her.  It is worse than Jason from Friday the 13th.  Worse than Freddy Krueger.  Worse than ‘When a Stranger Calls’.  She has become…


No longer in denial.

I immediately rushed to my doctor to get my vaccine updated.  I mean, one cannot be too careful when dealing with the PTA.  They bite.

I shall miss you, my dear friend.  I will, of course, laugh at you, mock you and avoid you at all costs, but know that in my heart, I will miss you.

And also know….I am laughing my ass off at you!

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What have I done?

What have I done?

Forgive me, Internet, for I have sinned.  I feel I must come clean with something I did last week.  You may shriek in horror.  You may even turn your back on me for my horrific act.  But I still feel I must be honest with you.

Last Friday, I went to a…..PTA meeting.  BUT WAIT, it gets worse.  I showed up a half an hour early to help the Hospitality Chairperson set up and make coffee.  AND (yes, there is more) when the sign-in sheet was passed around, I signed it.  With my REAL name and REAL number.  I know. I know.  The horror of it is almost too much to comprehend.  Yet, sadly, there is even more to my sinful ways. 

After the meeting, I joined one of my good friends (A Stepford in denial- who will be called out by name if she outs me again) while she was talking to other board memebers.  I knew it was going to happen.  That damned introduction.  I stammered and stumbled and finally admitted my name was Jenn.  The woman cocked her head to the side and asked for my last name.


Before I knew it, I told her.  I TOLD HER MY REAL NAME!

I know.  I know.  I am ashamed of myself, too.  Not only did I put myself out there, but I know that this will make my participation in the PTA Protection Program null and void.  What, oh what have I done?  (In my defense, most of the board is either people I get along with or people in new positions.  I mean, it could be different.  Right?  RIGHT?!!)

I knew that throwing myself on the ground and faking my own death was the smarter move. Now…well, now I can only accept that I have been marked a target once again for PTA volunteering.  UNLESS, they are blog readers.  Then, there isn’t a chance in hell they would ask me back! 

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Does a new laptop come with that?

Does a new laptop come with that?

I forgot the best part of the story below.  So, I am the Person In Charge of putting together the Memory Books for the kids.  Basically, the memory book consists of each 5th grader’s picture and then a series of questions like “best memory…” and “when I grow up I want to be a…”.  You get the picture.

I started off with a $150 budget.  For 80 memory books.  Well, not one to do things half-assed, I decided to rearrange the budget and got it bumped up to $250.  (GO me!)

If you know me at all or have learned anything from reading this blog, you know that I pretty much live by the motto “Everything in excess!” This would be no exception!

Black and white photos?  Pah!  We are going COLOR!

Two students per page?  Please!  We are going “one per” on this project.

Card stock covers?  I think not!  We’re having slick covers, baby.

(And these people allowed ME to be in charge?  Seriously?  I laugh at their lack of judgement!)

Remember that $250 budget I was so very proud of?  Imagine the horror…the sheer horror I felt upon getting this claim check when I was trying to get the books made.

Imagine if you will a frantic and freaked out woman at 11:00pm, crying and becoming hysterical when seeing this figure.  I believe I even fainted for a moment or two.

Again, I ask… Why did these people leave me in charge?  They KNOW me!  They know my general disregard for the rules, especially PTfreakinA rules.  Come on people.  Puh-leez!

It all worked out in the end.  I mean, I owe my husband in ways that are not even fit to put into type for saving my ass on this.  But, the kids got their memory books.  The PTfreakinA didn’t have to fork over $2,758.40. (Don’t forget the 40 cents, people.  It all counts!) And I got all of the credit.  Which we all know I am a credit whore who wants all of the praise and adoration. 

When it came time to turn in receipts and get checks cut for reimbursements, I totally wanted to submit this claim checkI thought it would be pretty damn hysterical to watch the PTfreakinA president and treasurer freak the hell out when they saw it.  I mean, worst case scenario, I get a great laugh at their expense.  Best case, I get that check cut and can go back to Fry’s and buy my own lickable laptop.

Come on, admit it.  You would be tempted to turn that receipt in, too.  Wouldn’t you?

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All this and cake too?

All this and cake too?

I don’t know if I mentioned that I would be MIA due to the 5th grade graduation.

Fifth Grade.  Graduation.  (I shall pause here while you all vomit in your mouths and get fresh water.)

Remember when I was outted to a PTAer earlier in the year?  And when that person put my name on a list to “help” with the end of the year graduation program?  Remember that?  Well, we can TOTALLY blame her for my absence as of late. (Do you want her email address?  I will totally give it to you!)

I mean, they really do make a big deal out of the fact that these kids made it through elementary school.  Here is a brief breakdown of a few of the things involved that I was in charge of seeing completed.

80 Memory Books………$302

80 Slide Show DVDs…..$197

Excess Drinking by Volunteers…………$78

Listening to the friend who is responsible for getting me over-involved scream like a little girl who is seeing her own death flash before her eyes after she got me sucked back into the PTA…….Priceless

I am seriously surprised at all that the school does for the 5th graders when they graduate. They had a graduation ceremony. (No caps and gowns, but very dressed up kiddos.) They all got a memory book (you’re welcome) and a copy of the DVD slide show that was shown at graduation (again, you’re welcome) and a reception. 

Now, don’t get me wrong.  The kids love it.  The parents get to ooooh and ahhhh over their little spawns.  It’s just that it is FIFTH GRADE. 

*blank stare*

Want to know what I got for graduating 5th grade?

The opportunity to go to 6th grade.

Is this something that is particular to this area (aka Snotty, Tx) or is this something everyone does?  I really need to know this information because I am shocked at what a big deal it was.  I, therefore, feel like the Grinch Who Stole Graduation because I think it is so over the top for 5th graders.  I need to know what other areas of the country do.  How did/does your elementary school handle the end of elementary school? 

Because, seriously, if this is something that is just particular to Snotty, Tx, I am so going to move to PiddlePiss, Tx so that I can avoid this in the future.

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