failure is not an option

february 2022
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(Russo-Traver Household Profile)
Zeke Traver (38 years), Morgan Russo-Traver (37 years), Lewis Traver (16 years), Vivienne (8 years), Cicely (8 years)

narrated by: Lewis

Cicely couldn’t see the chalkboard, so naturally the entire bunch of us had to get our eyes checked. Of course, the only one that had an eye issue was Cicely, seeing she was the only one who couldn’t see in the first place. Sometimes I think Morgan overreacts. Cicely doesn’t even care that she has glasses now, she’s just happy that she can see.

She’s too happy of a kid, there’s been zero snowflakes this winter, and she’s thrilled because now she can do somersaults year round. Like who loves somersaults that much? Give me a snow day, please.

Dad always goes out there to watch her do her flips and flops, and I know that Dad would have never watched me flip around if I had asked as a kid.

I’m glad she’s not a cranky sister, because that would be worse, but she’s even happy when she showers before bed. Belting out songs like she’s in a musical.

She’s even got a regiment for her skincare, washing her face and everything. I actually have acne, and I don’t have a routine.

Vivienne is much more like Dad and me, headstrong. She’s set on it snowing this winter, and sits outside if there is even a slight chance of a snowflake. Dad allows this insane behavior, and the adults think it is cute. It never snows, and she freezes in the meantime, because it’s by no means summer weather out there.

She hates doing her homework, and she hates sitting still. Dad lost his IT job last month, which was devastating, it was just after closing, and Morgan and Dad were seeing if we could even afford the house. Thankfully we appear to be able to, but now he’s home 24/7 and Vivienne is constantly finagling with him.

And Dad always gives into her. He’s never been strong with kids, I always did whatever I wanted until Morgan came into the picture. When your Mom dies, people pretty much want to buy your feelings away with gifts and treats. I don’t get that kind of treatment anymore though, Morgan put a stop it, and said that it wouldn’t help me in the long run. I didn’t know she was a shrink too.

When Morgan isn’t home, bedtime looks like this.

When she is home, it is more like this.

She’s in the interview stage for the Chief of Staff position, her Mom is retiring at the end of this year, and who better to take over Metro Hospital, than her own daughter. Morgan insists that she has to go through the same process as anyone else, but I figure she’s just saying that. She is also working on a medical research project that could help make the hospital ahead of its time.

Dad has found a new passion for cooking, he’s becoming incredibly domesticated the longer he lives with Morgan. He insists that cooking is new favorite thing, and is constantly getting new recipes for us to try, if he starts a Pinterest board for recipes I’m going to have to intervene.

He’s awfully impressed with his new found abilities as well, he rattles on about how great each bite is, then pats himself on the stomach when the meal is complete. It’s not five star cuisine here, but it is better then boxed macaroni and cheese, and everyone knows that Morgan can’t cook anything but a lunchmeat sandwich.

In the new house, Morgan finally has her adult room, aka the boring room without a single electronic in it. She likes to do her reading in there, and when me and Dad horse around in there, she gets all upset that we are going to break something, like one of her books.

We get banished to the TV room, which I have to admit I pretty much love. She has a spot by the fireplace so she can be near us if she wants. But now that she’s working toward that promotion, she’s pretty much invisible when she’s home, which I’m not complaining about.

We also have a basement with a bar, which I totally want to throw a party at sometime. In the mean time, I got Dean to come by and I tried to get him to take a drink with me, but he refused. I didn’t drink enough to even feel a buzz, I just wanted to know how it tasted, and not be found out by Morgan-Police. I was disappointed that Dean wouldn’t try it, sometimes he seems babyish.

But he can do a mean trick shot over the girls’ old xylophone, which makes Vivienne mad if she sees us.

Good news came in the middle of the month, Dad found a job doing Graphic Design, he’s in the same building downtown as before. He’s pretty pumped, thinks he’ll like doing Graphic work more than IT, and it has better hours.

With Dad back at work, it means that I have the house to myself, sometimes for hours on end. Morgan takes the girls to her parents out in Millwood about once a week, but lets me stay home. I appreciate this gesture, because her parents are the worst.

They love their grandkids though, Dad says that they’ve softened them up, but he still doesn’t venture over more than necessary. When Regina found out that the girls didn’t know piano, she jumped right on it.

Vivienne is the happiest about Regina giving her lessons, Regina thinks it’s required of a young lady to know how to play, and she’s trying to fill her schedule after she retires. But Vivienne is really terrible, and I wonder if she regrets taking on this charge.

Sometimes she has to leave the girls there to go into the hospital for a delivery. With Dad working until seven or eight o’clock, that means I get the house to myself.

Caitlyn usually comes over, we can make out at her house, but her twin brother is always around, even when their Dad is gone.

At my house, there’s no one around to keep an eye on us. We started dating when we were thirteen, and had not considered going a farther step. At the time Morgantalked to her about birth control, and Dad talked to me. But we both thought it was an over reaction.

Caitlyn didn’t think it was necessary, but I did take my Dad’s advice, because I don’t want to be a teen Dad. I think Caitlyn took the whole experience different then me, I wish I could talk with Dean about it, but I don’t think he’d understand. When I was his age, I didn’t think about this kind of stuff, not really.

That night, Morgan came home and told us about a delivery at the hospital. She went into all the details, and it made me feel like she knew what me and Caitlyn had done.

It was my classmate Perla Martinez’ Mom, Isabella. She had a boy named Deigo, and he went into the NICU for some breathing treatments. Morgan always shares these stories because the twins were in an incubator when they were born too.

It was definitely gross to hear about Perla’s Mom having a baby, and all the grossness that it ensues.

And it made me nervous about doing anything risky with Caitlyn, even with my own form of birth control, because I definitely don’t want to witness a birth anytime in the near future.


Notes: None of my households had a single snowflake this entire winter!

Zeke lost his job, and I was devastated for a few minutes. He went back to night school for that job specifically, but it turns out his interests match Graphic Design better, and it has better hours.

Apparently I’ve been prudish (they are in the same family tree, but not “related”) in not letting Lewis and Caitlyn go farther in their relationship, so I let them. Lewis is allowed birth control, but Caitlyn is not. Good grief do I hope nothing happens with these two! I always take Lewis for a bit of a cautious risk taker, both of his parents were very wild, Zeke was always angry, and his Mom was drunk and cheating all the time. So I see him as someone who was raised better, but still has that desire to test things out.

And Isabella Martinez (pnpc) had her third baby that was due this month, Diego Martinez. I need to update the PNPC page with a picture of him, but am waiting until his first birthday I think.

I put up a tour on tumblr of their new house Part I, Part II. I seriously love this house.

Thanks for reading!!


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10 thoughts on “failure is not an option

  1. Uh oh, Lewis is trying to peer pressure Dean into drinking with him! I hope he and Caitlyn slow things down a bit. They need to be extra careful so there aren’t any mishaps!

    1. Uh yes! I definitely do not want any mishaps, especially with these two! They have lasted longer than I anticipated. Lewis and Dean have a funny relationship, genetically speaking, Lewis is Dean’s older half-brother (though they weren’t raised that way), so sometimes he likes to play the older-know-it-all part, and depending on their ages, they have a lot in common, or they don’t.

      Thanks for commenting!!

    1. I agree, I think that Zeke is way more laid back in parenting, and would agree that kids need to be allowed to test their boundaries and try things out. Morgan is not laid back, and if she found out about the liquor or the bedroom behavior, she would freak out.

      Thanks for commenting Starr!

  2. Ha, Lewis could be a bit of a bad influence on Dean but it’s good to see he was sensible with the birth control at least. Especially seeing Caitlyn wasn’t! If he’s prone to taking risks, I think it makes sense that he’d be keen to get Caitlyn into bed as well.

    I’m glad Zeke was able to get another job. I can see him in graphic design! It will let him indulge his creative side and his techie side, which I imagine he’ll really enjoy.

    Vivienne and Cecily are so adorable. And those glasses – they up the adorability factor for sure! If I’d had glasses as a kid, I definitely would have wanted fun coloured ones like those.

    I can’t remember: is anyone else in line for Chief of Staff or is Morgan a shoe-in? Loved seeing her working so hard to achieve that goal, so I hope it pays off.

    1. Yes, the Graphic Design is a perfect match for Zeke! I don’t know how I missed it before when I put him back in school, but now I’m glad I did, sort of a lemonade scenario here. And it has way better hours, I adjusted the IT one to have better titles and more realistic hours.

      Lewis could totally be a bad influence, but he’s definitely not as crazy as he could be. If Dean were older, I think he’d look into some of these options himself, but he’s 13, such a kid still. Though I don’t see him being a drinker, ever, not with his career desires and more serious nature.

      I agree about the glasses, totally made Cicely more adorable!

      Morgan was competing against Marcus Dwyer, but he had a chance card and got a malpractice suit, so Morgan is pretty much a shoe-in now. She hasn’t gotten to that level yet, but when she does, it will be hers. (Hadley Millett will not be pleased with this, seeing Morgan dislikes her).

      Thanks for commenting Carla!

  3. Oh my, oh my. Do be careful Lewis! At least he takes the risk of teen pregnancy seriously. As for the drinking, as long as he’s responsible and doesn’t do anything stupid, it can’t hurt to have a sip. But no pressuring the others, especially since he’s not legal himself.
    Glad Zeke got a another job that works better, and a new hobby that’s usefl for the family to boot! Well, at least Lewis and Morgan aren’t at each other’s throats.

    1. Yes the biggest no, no for Lewis is pressuring Dean to partake with him. But who wants to break rules alone? Originally Zeke had fitness as a hobby, which never fit him in my mind, he’s pleasure for pity sake! So I used Pru’s hobby chart at N99 to change a few in this house, and Zeke fit with cooking. I could see him being at home in the kitchen, and discovering this dormant hobby after being fired. And yes his new job is much better fitted for him, I’m excited that it worked out so well!

      Thanks for commenting Fini!

  4. Lewis’ perspective on this one was very entertaining! His opinion and views on Morgan had me snickering. The “Morgan-police”, haha! I definitely agree with you seeing him as a cautious risk-taker. I’m hoping he doesn’t get stuck in something very unfortunate with Caitlyn’s less-than-cautious risking! Yikes.

    1. I really hope there are no long lasting repercussions too! I really don’t want these two to stay together forever, though I would relent if that’s where it went, but I’d like them to have that freedom. I’m glad he was entertaining, in my mind he has this mouthy, bad attitude, but it’s nearly entirely internal, because Morgan would squash him, and Zeke wouldn’t tolerate it ether. So he mouths back in his head.

      Thanks for commenting Mao!

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