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The Chronicles of Pern: First Fall

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Who is Who

Me - Mommy ~ I love listening to country music, Celtic Thunder, and almost anything but metal.  My hobbies are astronomy gardening (thought mostly the plants end up dying) and reading.  I would read all night if I could.  I am a substitute teacher so I sadly sleep most nights so I can be alert and focused for my students.

I recently divorced my husband and after moving back home with my parents to help take care of them.  Now I have ventured out on my own.  Sadly my mom passed away and my brother and his family are taking care of Dad now. 

D-Daddy ~ My ex-husband.  We were in love once and had many good years.  Something happened, I don't know what.  Some think it was me gaining independence.  I went back to school and got a degree, I started driving and I started making decisions on my own.  Over the years he went from hugging me for no reason in the supermarket to hating everything I did and would call me names and do hurtful things to me.  Once he told me that if what I was saying didn't sound interesting he just wouldn't listen.

He loves to listen to metal and truly believes that hockey is God.  He can tell by looking at a photo of almost any NHL team what year it was taken by looking at the uniform and can tell you who won the Stanley cup in any year.  Honestly he seems to be more angry at me since the divorce became final and overtime I show him I don;t need him anymore he will lash out at me somehow.

P ~ My oldest child.  He was such a tiny baby, not even 6 pounds.  I still remember how he swung his head towards me when he heard my voice for the first time.  Through the years he has kept me on my toes.  I have woken up to him holding a bouquet of sharp knives, knives that were up so high that I had a hard time reaching them.  He has covered my living room rug with coffee grounds, emptied 17 trivial pursuit games cards into a giant pile, made cement in the living room (of course spilling some on the rug too).

That was before we knew that he had asperger's, sorry today it is now called low level autism.  Now that he is approaching his teens Minecraft and his iPad are his world.  Luckily I have parental controls and can make his world turn off at my command (Muh ha ha!)

He is a teenager, yes he is turning evil.  So I expect at lest 10 years of trial and tribulations from him. Though he still wants to give me his and will happily offer me kisses in an attempt to bribe me.  He is handling the divorce better than I thought, But I think our decision to let him stay with his father for the time being is the biggest reason why.  I am hoping in the future that he will want to live with me.

He seems to finally like my house and I have to say he is much better behaved when he is at my house rather than his father's.  He always starts misbehaving and resists my parenting about 45 minutes before his father picks him up.

B ~ My youngest child.  She was such a big baby, over 8 pounds!  Was late, got stuck, and was pouting when I first saw her.  When I finally saw he perfect tiny fingers of course only the middle one  was sticking up.  We called her Diva even before she was born.   She freely uses her cuteness for evil and is just so precious.  She has a secret weapon, her shrill screech.
Now that we are living with my parents, my mostly deaf father can hear her screech.  It is horrible and so high pitched I often check to see if a hoard of angry dogs are running toward us.

Luckily unlike my son she LOVES to read so I often find her snuggled up with a good book.  Unfortunately she has learned to reading under the covers with a flashlight trick and is fully capable of staying up all night if so desired.  She loves art and has some of her art in every art show that her school district has.

He biggest passion right now is cats.  Her cat ran away so there is only one cat at her father's house.  At my father's house there are four cats and a dog and at my house two dogs, five cats and three spiders.  She adores animals and I think she may incorporate them into her career someday.

My Mommy ~ She raised me and made me who I am, well she definitely helped, lol!  She also loves to read, often she will read more than one book at a time.  In fact one of her famous quotes is "I had a book..."  usually said while looking for one of the books she is reading.  Like me she teaches, but is a special education teacher.  I have such fond memories of her taking me to school with her on my days off when I was a child.  Of course her district had different days off.

She had been care taker to my brother and I as we grew up, my grandmother when she could no longer care for herself, my father when he could no longer walk and years later when he suffered from two strokes within weeks of each other.  Last year it was my turn to take care of her.  Unfortunately I only had nine months with her after her fall in the parking lot.  I miss her every day.

She has been gone for almost a year now and everyday I have to stop myself from calling her and telling her about what is happening in my life.  I know she is still hanging around and I feel her presence every day.

My Daddy ~ We have had our differences.  Most say we are too much alike and when we live in the same house but heads.  So of course when someone needed to take care of him without a second thought I did.  Over the years as I grew into an adult we have gotten together much better.  Now that I am a parent myself I understand him much better than I did as a child.

Still it is different being the one to give him his meds, making sure he is tucked in a night and fixing him his meals.  I do not understand how he can eat the exact same thing every morning and have made sure to have a stockpile of Cheerios in the house because I truly believe the world will come to an end if he does not get his bowl of Cheerios in the morning.

His dementia is getting worse, but having my brother and his family as well as their pets living with him seems to be good for him.  It is not one person doing it all like it was when I was there and because my brother has a dog my father finally has another dog in his life.  He spoils jade rotten, and jade in turn steals the socks right off his feet.

S ~ My baby brother.  My first memory of him is waiting in the backseat of my parents car with Dad in the drivers seat and Mom in the passenger seat.  We were waiting behind a hospital and a parade of doctors and nurses were walking past us.  Finally one stopped and handed my mom a baby.  Then Mom and Dad asked me for name suggestions, they decided on S.  Since then we have tormented each other and been best of friends.

We both have started our own families. The only difference is his spouse is wonderful and mine was a jerk.  Like me his older child has Autism, but on the other end of the spectrum.  Now that we are grown ups we still torment each other, but we also still love each other (though there are some days we both may try to deny it).  He lives with my dad now and I'm on my own.

Hannah Montana - No not the one from the tv show.  My daughter fell in love with tarantulas when she was two.  I know what little girl doesn't dream of having a pet spider.  It took her 8 months to talk me into buying it for her.  Oh I tried to not buy it.  First I asked my landlady (my MIL) if we were allowed to get one assuming she would say no, she said of course, get one.  Then I tried to bring her to the pet stores with me showing that they were hard to find and expensive.  The store had at least 20 and most were priced between $12 and $15.  Finally after research and the universe flinging open every door I tried to close to keep the tarantula out of our house we bought one and actually became quite attached to her (well, all except my ex who doesn't even know they need water to live).

Red Knee - My son has always given his pets very literal names.  If he were to ever get a dog and it was black I am sure he would call it Blacky.  I don;t know if he really wanted a tarantula or just wanted one because his sister had one.  I had to order this tarantula special and have it shipped via FedEx.  I wonder if they always know what they have in those boxes?  We don't know it Red Knee is a male or female but it has been with us for three years now and has molted many times.  They don't have red knees when they are babies, Red Knee only started to reveal it's true colors about a year ago.  This tarantula we have watched triple in size and it is fascinating to see the changes overtime it molts.  It is still to quick to handle, but of the tree tarantulas we have the most interesting to watch.

Strawberry - She is a Giant Strawberry Blond Tarantula and I consider her a rescue.  I bought her from a couple who had no idea how to take care of her.  I always tell people tarantulas make great pets because 1) they don't stink 2) They only eat .50 of food a week and if need be can go a few weeks without food, like they do in the wild 3) they don't make any noise and 4) Their cages only need to be cleaned out every month or so.

The people who had her before I got her had her in a smelly glad fish tank, it was filled with dead crickets, It was disgusting.  I ended  p buying her a new enclosure because the aquarium was just so filthy and stinky.  She still hasn't moved since I got her, so I assume she is full grown, but she is smaller than others of her species.  She is considered a bird eater so she could get very large.

Tango - Such a happy dog.  When yo come home he is more than excited to see you and he will talk to you and let yo know it.  Not just barking, he really is using different tones and sounds in his vocalizations so you know he is telling you something.

He is in a house full of cats and often we can't help but wonder if he thinks he is a cat.  I am convinced his goal in life is to keep up away from the stairs because his two favorite places to sleep are at the top and second bottom stair.  He looks at you when you want to use the stairs as if to say, "No, these are not the stairs you are looking for."

If a burger ever broke in I am sure he would lead the burger around and show where all the good stuff was just to be pet and have his ears scratched.  He may not be the smartest tad but he is one of the most lovable ones.

Hip Hop - Our newest addition, with the fastest little legs I have ever seen.  I have a friend who lives in Pennsylvania with a dog that runs out of the yard or front door any chance he gets, we used to as well when I was a child.  (His name was Houdini.)  How that he has been here a bit he doesn't try to take out of the front door every time it is opened.

He is a lapdog and loves to Snuggle with T and PT.  His eyes are precious and they look like he contains all the worlds kindness in them.  Tango is happy to have a playmate and they really get together almost all the time.  Like siblings thought there is the occasional spat.  But in a house full of animals I have to say he fit in perfectly and has been a joy.  Sometimes you just have to have a dog on your lap to make the world a better place.

Oliver - At least part Main-Coon.  He is so fluffy and snuggly and an attention hogger.  When I first moved in he declared that I was his.  He would sleep with me every night and if my door was closed he would meow and scratch at it until I relented and let him in.

He is a cat who knows what he wants and will get it.  He always has a plan in his cat brain, and I suspect it may be world domination.  He has taken my kitten under his paws and makes sure to spend part of every day playing with her.

He also will meow loudly if he thinks he is being ignored.  Who knew that there was nothing worse than an ignored Oliver.

Simone - Also known as the Empress Moo -  No one remembers exactly how old she is but she is older than 15 years.  She is a fat happy cat.  She is not a big fan of Oliver and the two of them have been known to get in a tussle or two.  She and the kitten have seemed to reach an understanding.  She won't hurt the kitten and the kitten will not use her as a toy.

She very rarely comes up stairs and this photo is from the second time she came into my room.  Usually she is in the converted garage to den or on the back of the sofa in the living room.  She loves to be pet but will not seek out your affection unless you are PT.

Cinder - Named from Cinderella - A beautiful tortoiseshell cat and also loves my room.  She is a head-butter.  She loves to let yo know that you are hers in no uncertain terms.  A very sweet cat , but does love to bite.  She is one of those cats that wants to be pet exactly a certain number of times and will demand the pets, but she won't give you a hint as to how many pets she wants.

It reminds me of the tootsie pop commercial instead of how many licks to get to the center it is how many pets until I bite you.

Mitten - AKA Casper - He is still a kitten and has catitude already.  He used to be such a cuddle to T and now is very stand-offish and hides.  Of course he was the cute cuddly one we all fawned over and then two new pets were introduced in as many weeks.

You can't tell from this photo but he has a black mart on his forehead and a black section on his tail.  He is still small for a cat, but much bigger than Munchkin.  He is so soft and fluffy.  I wish he would let us hold him more.

Now we play a game of lets find Mitten just so we know he is okay.  We found his last hiding spot so I have to assume a new one will be found soon.  Though he has been coming out more and more so maybe he is getting used to the new additions.

Munchkin Jelly Belly Simberscotch - That is what happens when kids can't agree on a name.  She soon will be having a Facebook page.  My daughter ids turning her into a fashionista and purchased at least six different collars for Muchy.  At least they are all from the Dollar Tree, so she can afford it.

She is a delight and always sleeps in my room much to Oliver's and Cinder's chagrin.  When she is off kitten food I am sure it will change but by keeping her food in my room I keep all the other animals from eating it.  Kitten food must be delicious because even the dogs try to get in my room to eat her food.

She was born on March 30, 2015, in Renovo Pennsylvania.  


  1. Hi,
    I am an assistant at Kirschenbaum Productions owned by Emmy award winning filmmaker, producer and speaker Gayle Kirschenbaum. I am doing outreach and building partnerships related to our upcoming feature documentary, Look At Us Now, Mother! The film is about a highly charged mother/daughter relationship and its transformation from Mommie Dearest to Dear Mom, from hatred to love, as told through Gayle's story.

    In my research I came upon your posts and found them enlightening and inspiring. I like your posts about your family very much. I believe your blog is a match with what we are doing, speaking to a similar audience, who strive to overcome their inner suffering.

    The reason Gayle is making such a deeply personal film is to help others who are suffering from childhood scars. After receiving much acclaim from the media and public to her award winning humorous short called MY NOSE, about her mother's relentless campaign to have nose job, Gayle decided she needed to go deeper to tell her story of forgiveness and healing.

    Our mission is to help restore family relationships and empower women to overcome their fears and accomplish their dreams. Gayle has developed a method using her "Seven Healing Tools" how to transform difficult relationships.

    I would love to brainstorm with the possibilities of a partnerships and collaboration.

    Here is a 2-minute movie trailer:

    Some possible ideas for partnerships are spreading the word about our upcoming film through your website and social media. Perhaps hosting a screening after the films release. The film will be the centerpiece of a large outreach campaign and we are looking for a partner to build this movement. We will, in turn will promote you in the same way.

    Please feel free to email me any additional questions. I look forward to hearing from you.

  2. Hello,

    I wanted to reach out to Autumns New Beginnings to let you know about a documentary and movement that we believe you will connect with: LOOK AT US NOW, MOTHER! We have been featured widely in the media, are humbled by sold out festival screenings, standing ovations and honored by awards. We are writing now as we are launching a Kickstarter campaign to raise the funds to launch the film theatrically as wide as possible.

    Emmy award-winning filmmaker, Gayle Kirschenbaum’s LOOK AT US NOW, MOTHER! is about the transformation of a highly charged mother/daughter relationship from Mommie Dearest to Dear Mom, from hatred to love. It is Gayle’s own story. It is about forgiveness. It was the hardest film for her to make and the most important. You will understand why when you view the private trailer below.

    We are creating a global movement focused on forgiveness and healing between mothers and daughters, with LOOK AT US NOW, MOTHER! as the center piece.

    To kick off this movement, we are going to be running a 30 day Kickstarter campaign starting September 10th!

    We need all the support we can get during this time. It would be a tremendous help if you would become an Outreach Champion by spreading the word about this film and campaign. We must meet our goal of $75,000 by the end of the 30 days, in order to collect any of the funds raised. It is all or nothing. Every little bit helps, and word of mouth is just as valuable as a donation!

    Can you tweet this out to your network starting Thursday, September 10th?

    Help LOOK AT US NOW, MOTHER! get to theaters! Support this #doc #LAUNM @glkirschenbaum on @kickstarter Find out how:

    We want to have a great push to launch the campaign so are asking many partnering blogs to help get the word out. Any support you can give gets us one step closer to our goal.

    Please share our project with others you know! Visit our KICKSTARTER PAGE and become a Backer! All amounts are welcome and are a huge help.

    More information can be found at LOOK AT US NOW, MOTHER! We thank you in advance for any help you can give!

    Below you will find a private link to the 4-minute trailer as well as a video and our Kickstarter Campaign video!

    Erica Handel
    Kirschenbaum Productions

    Inline image 1
    Password: 302ab

    What people are saying about the film.