RSS Feed

Tag Archives: Mom

Holiday Amnesia

Of course the holidays were more fun when I was a child and could just sit back and enjoy them with none of the work. I have gotten a little less enjoyment each year in scheduling when we can possibly get a tree and how we will find some extra Jacksons to pay for it and ultimately slogging out the same decorations to adorn it.

I know I sound terrible. And the tree is my FAVORITE PART OF CHRISTMAS!

But I have reached a new low this year…

This year, I can’t even remember it.

That’s right. I can’t remember what happened.

It was a blur of buying gifts, wrapping gifts, buying ingredients for cookies, going to holiday events which seemed to be happening not only every weekend, but then every night of the week. I remember the holiday party at work, and how much I was looking forward to it. That night, we saw a listing for a dog online who would turn out to be part of the litter we would ultimately adopt our new pup from.

Then, there is a blur.

Puppy arrives

I know a dog started living with us between Christmas and New Year’s. We went to my sister-in-law’s New Year’s Eve party. We took the dog. I think. My husband and I had birthdays too, but I only remember coming out of a sickness fog to return to work.

Did this really happen?

I am finding items around the house that I don’t remember. They all turn out to be my son’s Christmas presents he received. I know when we got the puppy there was a mad rush to remove items from her path that she may destroy or eat. But having them out of site also put them out of my mind.

Maybe I am just out of my mind.

Has anyone else ever experienced this, or is it just me?

Maybe the 24 hour stomach flu that went through our house had a coma effect? Except, well, I am the only one experiencing this problem.

Oh well. I have always said that Christmas should be like the Olympics—we should take a break in between them. Even Christmas every other year would be more palpable.

Maybe the Jennifer’s Holiday Amnesia Episode of 2017 is Santa’s way of granting that wish. He managed to grant all my other wishes this year.

Your past shapes you. It can’t be undone.


Mommy’s Day Out

Today I had a Mommy’s Day Out.

It was wonderful.

I highly recommend all mom’s take one now and again.

But I’m not telling how I spent my day.



From the broken mind of Jennifer Friess, the joining of hearts & souls…
NOW AVAILABLE! Troll Gurl and the Cursed Kingdom





What I Learned This Week – 12/7/14

This week I learned that on the right day of the year for only a donation to Toys for Tots, I could get to drive my car around Michigan International Speedway!

It was awesome!

Because I had to take my mom to the bank on Saturday anyway, I asked her if she would want to ride along out to the speedway with me. We both used to watch NASCAR racing for many years. It was the perfect activity for her–no walking.

She kept saying there would be tons of people and there would be a line.

There wasn’t.

We had a little trouble finding the right entrance to go in, but then we got to drive through a very narrow tunnel that made me nervous. Then everyone in the car had to sign a disclaimer. I even had to sign one for my son, M.

We went to enter the track on pit road.

I said, “Look! It’s pit road.”

My mom said, “Where?”

I said, “We are ON it!”

Then she was impressed.

I said, “Take pictures!”

She said, “I don’t have a camera.”

I said, “Use your cell phone.”

She forgets that there is a camera on her phone.

She got nervous when I went high in the turns. They are banked so high that my everyday vehicle seemed like it would roll over any second. It was very strange to see minivans and SUVs driving around the track together.

For your donation, you were supposed to get one time around the track at 25mph. We went more than one lap and more than 25mph, but not as many times or as fast as anyone else.

I felt a little closer to Jeff Gordon that day.

Here are our pictures:

The view from the track

The view from the track

Me gritting my teeth as I approach the steep banking

Me gritting my teeth as I approach the steep banking

The view of the track through my windshield

The view of the track through my windshield

The biggest surprise was the text I received the next morning from my mom:

Riding around the racetrack was one of the coolest things I have ever done in my life. Thank you.

Hmmm… If she is going to be that grateful for a change, I just might have to start dragging her out more often.

Coming Soon! My first book: The Wind Could Blow a Bug

Click here to sign up to be notified by email of my future book releases.


What I Learned This Week – 10/26/14

Tonight I learned not to judge the middle-aged woman in her pajamas pumping gas at the gas station. She may have spent all morning trying to get the checkbook balanced, and after three hours had to settle for a 10 cent discrepancy.

One pair HAS actually been to yoga class...

One pair of mine HAS actually been to yoga class…

I learned not to judge the woman in yoga pants pushing the grocery cart around Meijer. It is quite possible she was wearing real clothes earlier in the day the first time she left the house. That would also be before she helped her husband pick up leaves, and got covered in dirt, rotting leaves, and dog poop.  Also, before the dog barfed up a combo of her own poo and grass in the laundry room.  Twice.

I learned not to judge the weary-looking mother staring blankly at the grocery store shelf. It is very likely that this is the only time she has been at the store without her preschooler in a very long time, and needs to take advantage of this by picking up gifts for him for his upcoming birthday and Christmas. She might just be racking her brain to remember what size Lightning McQueen he was most interested in three days ago when they were at this very same store together.



For all you know, that woman has worked for the last 6 days straight. She could have bitten off more than she can chew. She misses her family. She misses her dog.

I learned not to judge the woman with her hair quickly escaping her pony tail and no makeup out in public at 9:00PM. She knows damn well that she has no right to be out. But she also spent all of her day doing so many other chores, that she still needs to buy groceries, including supplies for her son’s lunch at daycare tomorrow. And when she arrives home, she still will need to put away the groceries, pack said lunch for the son, pack one for herself, and tuck the tiny night owl into bed.

Then eat some Halloween candy.

Then type up and publish a blog post.

Then start reading The Perks of Being a Wallflower as preparation to publish her own YA book, hopefully before midnight.


This week I learned that I am totally that woman. You can judge me all you want, but I am drained.  Stay-at-home moms always argue that the work they do is REAL work.  And I wouldn’t argue that point, having done it for almost 2 years myself.  But, it is DIFFERENT work.  For all the days when the house ends up more of a disaster at the end of the day than when you started, there are many more days than not where you feel a sense of accomplishment of actually finishing the dishes, making a semi-nutritional and/or delicious dinner, or spending an actual 10 minutes of quality time with your child.  Working full time makes those tiny accomplishments impossible.


My 3 Jobs

Posted on

I think of myself as having three jobs right now:

1. Writer

2. Maid/ Mom

3. Customer Service/Retail

A pictograph of my life right now.

A pictograph of my life right now.

As a writer, I am working on like 4 novels at once. I hope to have once finished soon. I am also trying to keep up my blog, as I do not want to lose views just as I might have a product (my future book) to hock to them (THIS MEANS YOU!). I don’t want to abandon my only marketing tool. I have also learned that I write because “I can’t not write.” So, I might as well try to find a way to use that to move toward a goal.

Making a little money from it would be nice as well.

Fame and fortune would be AWESOME!

3 JOBS-meme

I am not a stay at home mom, because I work part-time outside the home. But when I am home, I am chasing my child, trying to keep him clean and fed and happy. (The “happy” part is almost impossible.) I am also trying to keep up with the laundry and dishes and sweeping. I aspire to complete a thorough spring cleaning someday…for 2011. We also have two large dogs. So some days I feel like a zookeeper as well.

I work about 15-20 hrs per week in a retail customer service job. So, I spend all day waiting on my child’s beck and call, then I head off to get paid to do the same thing for strangers.  I have an hour commute one way. So, if you figure I usually work 3 days per week, that is 6hrs I am gone from home and not getting paid for them, plus gas. It cuts into the bottom line. I know it sounds silly, but you have to understand that we love our house and want to stay close to our family. Therefore, we live in the land of very few good jobs. To get a job similar to the one I held for 12 years prior, we would have to move closer to Detroit, or a different city. We don’t want that. So, we make due.

I know that my husband does not see it this way at all. I try and throw the “three jobs” thought out there once in a while, but I don’t think he understands what I am getting at. He just sees my small paycheck and thinks I should get a different job. He views my writing as a hobby.

But I looked for a job for a year and a half, before I found this one. And where I am at now, I am actually making more than minimum wage. If I got a different job, that might not be the case. The minimum is the new maximum, me thinks. And with this job I have thus far avoided daycare for my son, which, could lead to additional costs.

I don’t think he realizes that in 2003, we tried to run our own business, because he wanted to. I supported him, because I knew a version of that had always been his dream. We were also planning our wedding at the same time. It was highly stressful. It was one of those businesses that only thrives if you sign up people to be under you. We never got any. We gave up on it. The info and motivational tapes from that are still sitting in our attic. Like a big sign that reads “failure”.

When we were both out of work a few years ago, he tried a self-employed venture. Once again, it wasn’t exactly his big dream, but it was something he would enjoy doing more than factory work. I supported him. The market was not real good at that time, and it was a hard business to network. It was hard for a new kid on the block to get word of mouth, when there were so many established people in the field available. He put that venture on the back-burner after a year. The advertising from it is still sitting in our driveway, a literal “sign” that makes me sad.

That is two years of my life of letting him take his chance on a dream. So, I am looking at 2014 as my year to pursue my dream. I am just not sure that he has realized that yet.  We might not have a lot of food in the cupboards, but we are not going hungry. Working part-time allows me more time to work on my writing.

I have not reached my goals yet, but I AM GETTING SOMEWHERE!


Will my goals cost a little money to get there? Sure.

Did my husband’s? Yes.

Will my writing pay out big dividends? Most likely not.

Did my husband’s? Not so much.

Were his ventures important to him? Of course.

Are mine important to me? Damn straight.

Imagine the wonderful harmony in our household if at least one of us was doing something they enjoyed as a part of a career?

Imagine if we BOTH were.

I don’t want to walk by boxes of my writing upstairs and have it remind me that I failed to meet my goal. I have been doing that for 20 years already.

I am done with failure. I want some success.

%d bloggers like this: