Wednesday, December 31, 2008
I think this is a sign of the apocalypse.
Hard & Heavy
Basically it's a Time Life compilation of music my dad wouldn't let me listen to when I was a kid because he thought it was devil music. Seriously, it's a Time Life compilation. I don't even know what to think about that.
It's nothing fancy, but it's been well received thus far. :)
Tuesday, December 30, 2008
Have you ever seen someone waving at you and, of course being the enchanting individual you are, you wave back enthusiastically only to find out that they were waving at the person behind you?
Well, I have, and it's always embarrassing. Even if that person doesn't see me waving, I always feel stupid.
Recently, I had something very similar to that happen and even though I didn't make a big scene, I am still embarrassed. Specifics aren't really important in this story, so I'll just tell you why I'm embarrassed.
I overheard someone talking the other day about something nice and Christmassy they had gotten for a friend of theirs, and how they were excited about it. In the context, I thought they were talking about me (I know, I know, but seriously, I thought it was me). I got a big, warm fuzzy thinking that they had done something nice for me, so I went out and bought a gift for them (which I wasn't planning on doing, but wanted to return the favor because I thought it was so sweet of them to think of me.) As you can probably guess, it turns out that they weren't talking about me at all and now I feel like some kind of lunatic because I handed over this wholly unexpected gift and stood there like a muppet while I realized it wasn't me they were talking about in the first place. Now I'm afraid they are going to feel awkward and obligated to return the favor, which I would never want in a million years.
If I'm going to overhear things in the future, I'm seriously going to have to make sure I overhear EVERYTHING that is said. *dies*
Friday, December 26, 2008
This is the post where I would usually write a long and philosophical post where I talk about all of the things that have happened this year.
I'm not doing that this time and you know why.
Oh, I know that things could have been infinitely worse. I'm not an idiot after all. But for someone who has grown up in a relatively happy, blessed and sheltered world, it was quite a shock to my system.
So instead of giving you a retrospective, 2008, please just imagine me kicking you in the crotch and giving you the bird while you lay whimpering in the street. Turn about is fair play, after all.
Hugs and kisses,
EDIT: See what I was doing there? I was anthropomorphizing 2008. You know, just in case you got confused.
Monday, December 22, 2008
1) I hate Christmas shopping sometimes. Not because I don't want to give presents (I love that part) but because I always want to find a really fitting gift for the people I shop for, and sometimes it's impossible to do that unless you have a long time to look. I didn't have that kind of time this year, and now I feel that some of my gifts will be slightly cheesy. :( Oh well, I'm glad to be able to give them, if nothing else! :)
2) You know that song "Baby, It's Cold Outside?" It's one of my favorite Christmas songs normally, but when I heard it the other day I realized that it could be interpreted as a rather cheerful song about false imprisonment and date rape drugs! Heeheehee. At one point the woman says "What's in this drink?" and the guy is trying to keep her from leaving his house. Steve and I spent the duration of the song changing the lyrics into creepy innuendos and lines from "Silence of the Lambs." Good times.
3) Grandma made some homemade gingerbread (not cookies) and it is gooooooooooood. I don't think I'd ever had actual gingerbread before! Now I'm determined to figure out how to make it. I'd ask her for the recipe, but she'll just tell me how to make it instead of writing it down. Bless her she's 86, so I shouldn't complain, but I can never remember everything she tells me to do.
4) OOOH! In case you don't know yet, starting in January I will be one half of the pair of Sprocket employees who will be writing and recording the Space Camp Podcast! I'm so excited. Granted, it's nothing spectacular, but it's a short, kid friendly broadcast that has a "Today in Space History" segment performed by my co-worker Andrew and my own "Tech-Knowledge" segment. Yes, I am the one of us to talk about technology. To be fair, though, it's very basic stuff and it will mostly be talking about who invented things or how ideas for certain things came to be created. The one I've recorded so far was about who invented the cell phone and the fact that he got his idea from watching Star Trek. If you have iTunes, be sure to subscribe to the podcast starting in January, and I think you may can download it also from our website, www.spacecamp.com. It's free, and you'll get to hear my intermittent southern accent kick in. It was really bad when I said the name "Gene Roddenberry."
Friday, December 19, 2008
1) Eat at elBulli. Apparently there is a two year waiting period and the food can cost up to $500 for a couple. I still want to do it, though.
2) Go on a picture taking tour of Italy, Ireland, Rome and Japan.
3) Get a special "white glove" tour of the Vatican art collection. (If Josh ever becomes pope, I'm calling in a favor, though.)
4) Make cheese. Butler said I wasn't allowed to get a cow because they scare him.
5) Sit next to Stephen King on a long flight and make him tell me why he always kills off people I like in his novels.
6) Sit in a huge bowl of melted chocolate. I mean, I could actually probably pull this one off, but it would be weird.
That is all for now.
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
1) My office is never going to dry out at this rate. Two new leaks have sprouted up and it feels like the air conditioner may be on in stead of the heat. I'm going to die of exposure INSIDE this office. I will haunt them so hard!
2) Speaking of people dying up here, this is what happened to Mace Windu:
You can't really see the actual water damage, but brother-man here is all kinds of melted. :(
3) OOOOH! Guess where Sara and I will be going on April 4th? We are going to see Wicked! I KNOW! I'm so excited! I had no idea that it would be coming to Alabama at all, much less to Birmingham. She got us some amazing seats and I'm super excited! I've been wanting to see the play since I read the book. Yay!
4)I totally flaked out on a project I was doing yesterday. I started working on it, got halfway through with it, walked away from it for a second and completely forgot about it. Hopefully I can get it done today and make up for my mental lapse. Right now I'm just hoping that my stickers weren't really important.
5) My cell phone is acting weird. I keep getting the alert sounds that mean I have a text message, but there is no text message waiting when I open the phone. If any of you fine people are trying to text me, I haven't received anything. Please don't be irritated.
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
As I was wondering through the interwebs, as one without a specific destination is bound to do, I came across a web page dedicated to deciphering the differences between the words we Americans have for certain foods and the ones the British use. Since Steve and I have been watching a lot of British television lately, I was interested, because at times I had no idea what the people on those shows were talking about. The word "flapjack" wasn't mentioned in the article itself, but further down the page in the comment section. Something about it just sounded so good that I had to try making them, so I did. Since I had no idea what one of the ingredients even was, I was a bit afraid that these things might not taste very good, but oh, mama, I was wrong about that! So go, I implore, nay...I demand, that you go to your nearest grocery store and pick up the ingredients for this and make them immediately. If nothing else, they are pretty darned good to eat at breakfast! Go, I say!
The flapjack recipe is very flexible. You can adjust the amount of sugar and syrup to taste and texture (more syrup=more sticky/gooey). It is a great canvas for add-ins: dried fruit, nuts, seeds, spices. So far I've only made them the way the recipe calls for plus adding some dried cranberries, but I'm thinking that chocolate chips might also be good in these.
Ginger Flapjacks (UK):
1 lb oats or one full cup of oats.
1 tsp ground ginger
8 oz butter
4 oz demerara sugar (I didn't know what that was, but you can sub light brown sugar)
1/4 cup golden syrup (Lyle's is the UK standard; heard you can sub 1/2 light corn syrup and 1/2 honey if you can't find golden syrup. I found a tin of Lyle's at my local Publix in the same section as Karo syrup.)
Preheat oven to 300FCombine dry ingredients. Melt butter, sugar, and syrup until sugar dissolves. Combine butter mixture with dry ingredients. Press into a parchment lined 12"X8" pan. Bake for 15-20 minutes (15 minutes for a softer flapjack/20 minutes for a firmer/crunchier flapjack). Cool in pan 10 minutes and score into bars/squares. Let cool completely before cutting all the way through. Makes about 24 2-inch squares.
I accidentally put in a bit too much of the golden syrup, so my finished product is a bit gooey. Instead of being able to eat them with my hands, I'm going to have to eat them with a fork. They are still delicious, just not hand-holdable. I'll also go ahead and warn you that when you take these out of the oven, they aren't going to seem done. Maybe it was the excess of syrup, but even after baking for 20 minutes, when I pulled them out of the oven, the middle of the pan shook like unbaked batter. However, just let them cool completely and they will firm up.
So there you go. Yummy stuff. Let me know if you made these and how they turned out! :)
Monday, December 15, 2008
LAYER 1: Tell us your…
* Name: Sheena, Queen of the Dwarf People or Kelly
* Birthday (month, day): February 14th
* Birthplace: Huntsville, AL
* Current location: Huntsville, AL
* Eye color: Dark Brown, almost black
* Hair color: Dark Brown with reddish bits in it
* Height: 5′4″
* Righty or lefty: Righty
* Zodiac sign: Aquarius
LAYER 2: What’s…
* Your heritage: As far as I know I'm Swedish/Native American, but there is more I don't know
* The shoes you wore today: My ragged, fake, Wal-Mart Uggs
* Your weakness: Puppies and chocolate, but separately
* Your fears: Roaches, heights, closed in spaces
* Your perfect pizza: I don't care for pizza
* Goals you’d like to achieve: Happiness, security, minions
* Your first waking thoughts: Can I make myself go to the gym today? No? OK!
* Your best physical feature: My eyes
* Your most missed memory: Being silly with friends
LAYER 3: Do you…
* Smoke: no
* Cuss: I'm trying to stop, but I do occasionally. Ok, I do it a lot, but I really am trying to stop.
* Sing: Lots. All of the time
* Do you think you’ve been in love: A couple of times, actually.
* Did you go to college: Yes!
* Liked high school: Mostly, but there were some unpleasant times.
* Want to get/stay married: I'd like to stay married.
* Believe in yourself: Not anymore
* Think you’re attractive: No
* Think you’re a health freak: Bwahahahahaaaa...*cough...wheeze* No.
* Get along with your parent(s): Of course.
* Like thunderstorms: Love them. The louder the better.
* Play an instrument: Xylophone, clarinet, piano, Rock Band drums. :)
LAYER 4: In the past month have you…
* Drank alcohol: blurg, no
* Smoked: No! Yuck.
* Done a drug: Not an illegal one
* Made out: Ha, no.
* Gone on a date: No
* Gone to the mall: Once, but I hope I don't have to go back for a while. Yikes.
* Eaten an entire box of Oreos: I don't care for Oreos.
* Eaten sushi: Yuck, no.
* Been on stage: Yes
* Been dumped: No
* Gone skating: No
* Gone skinny dipping: No (wow, I'm boring.)
* Stolen Anything: I was going to get some hot chocolate from the unmanned concession stand the other day, but after I got out of an ethics meeting, I didn't feel right about it!
LAYER 5: Have you ever…
* Played a game that required removal of clothing: I don't think so.
* Been trashed or extremely intoxicated: Yes
* Been caught “doing something”: God, no!
* Been called a tease: No
* Gotten beaten up: Only by my sister.
* Shoplifted: No, I was too chicken.
* Age you did get/hope to be married: 22
* Numbers and names of children (either you have or want): None. Do Not Want.
* Describe your dream mate: I'm too disillusioned about this. I couldn't tell you anymore.
* How do you want to die: Quick
* What did you want to be when you grow up: A ballerina or Prison Guard.
* What country would you most like to visit: Italy!
LAYER 7: Now tell…
* Name a drug you’ve taken illegally: Ativan, but it was an emergency.
* Name a person you could trust with my life: Only me
* Name a favorite CD that you own: Most of mine are self recorded, so I don't have a "Favorite"
* Number of piercings: 7 - Two I still use, four others I don't use anymore, all in my ears.
* Number of tattoos: None
* Number of times my name has appeared in the newspaper: A few. I did a lot of stuff in high school that got recognition. Usually FFA stuff.
* Name a past experience that you regret: I once told a boyfriend that I loved him when I really didn't. Then I told him I didn't mean it and it really hurt his feelings. I hate hurting people's feelings.
Thursday, December 11, 2008
If it rains much more in the next day or two, I'm seriously going to consider wearing floaties to work.
For those of you lucky enough not to work in my office, you probably don't know that it actually flooded in here yesterday. I'm not talking about a tiny bit of water on the carpet, either. I'm talking a soaked carpet, wet paper, ruined foam core apocalypse.
I realized something weird was going on when I walked into the museum and saw two large, drip catching garbage cans sitting in the center of the walkway that runs underneath my office. At first I didn't understand how bad things would have to be upstairs for water to have to actually get through the floor, but then I remembered that my office is right above a concrete barrier that serves as a ceiling downstairs. Oy vey. When I opened the door that runs to the third floor offices, I noticed that it was very humid and there was a very bad smell coming from my end of the hall. I walked into my office and my feet squelched on the carpet. I looked down and saw that with each step, water was welling up around my feet. It was so nasty. The floor up here is filthy at best, because it's too difficult to get a vacuum cleaner up the stairs, and I could only imagine what kinds of new life forms were being reconstituted like diabolical sea monkeys in the now soaking nap . The water was still dripping onto the carpet occasionally, but it had slowed down enough to make passage into the room safe enough. My office was destroyed. Granted, my computer was salvaged, due to my co-workers efforts and my other electrical equipment was luckily sheltered under a concrete overhang, but almost everything else in there was wet, had been wet, or was damp because the heater came on at night and caused the humidity to rocket. I hadn't seen windows that steamed up since I was 16!
I called the COO, because the last time our ceiling leaked this bad (albeit on the other end of the hallway) he came up to survey the damage. You know, kind of like how the president will fly to one of those towns that have been badly damaged in some kind of storm. They can't do anything to help, but they walk around looking concerned. Apparently the Leak Of Doom was too old news to get him back up here, so a team of building maintenance men came up to see what was going on. They sort of tried to use a shop vac on the carpet, but even they saw it was an exercise in futility. They did empty out the water filled garbage cans for me, though, which was nice.
By this time I was wet to the knees. As you know, I'm short, and most of my jeans are a smidge too long for me. Their hems touch the floor, and I'm bad about stepping on them. This time, however, every time I'd do it, water would wick up through the hems. My feet and legs were wet and cold all day!
They finally decided that they would attach a rain gutter along the seam in the roof that is leaking so badly. Attach a rain gutter INSIDE my office. I mean, seriously, I can't get more white trash unless I get patio furniture and have a duck running around loose in here. Come on! At any rate, the gutter actually worked very well, with only a little bit of leaking in some spots. They have to channel the water into a trash can for now, which they have to empty periodically, but they are going to figure out a better way soon. I hope. We've estimated that about a hundred gallons (maybe a bit more) soaked through my office yesterday. Nice.
Losses are few, but annoying. I have been recycling old signs so that we don't have to order more foam core as often, but my stash got wet and is now mostly ruined. A bulletin board that I keep some of my sketches and samples on got wet and I had to throw a lot of things away. Spiderman got soaked, but he's made of nylon, so I'm going to leave him alone and see if he dries out. I had a sketchbook that I had been using to draw what was going to be my Christmas card this year, and now that is ruined. Both chairs in my office are wet, but I don't have anywhere else to sit, so my butt has been wet for two days. It's not pleasant. Luckily my Chewbacca and Obi Wan standees were in a safe place, but Mace Windu wasn't as lucky. He wasn't my favorite Jedi, but dangit, I liked him protecting the door. If anyone knows what a Jedi funeral entails, please e-mail me and let me know so that he gets a proper send off.
At any rate, things seem to be getting less...wet in here. I'm hoping that my carpet dries out soon and the bad smell goes away. If you've heard that I have died of some kind of weird fungal disease, please note that it probably came from the carpet in my office.
That is all.
Tuesday, December 09, 2008
The Final Countdown MemeI stole this from Annie because she always has the most funnest memes on her blog!
TEN things you wish you could say to TEN different people right now:
1. Don't worry, it'll happen soon. Not as soon as you want, but sooner than you think. :)
2. I want to forgive so much, but I don't know if I have the power to do it. I'm trying really hard.
3. As wonderful a woman as I think you are, sometimes your selfishness astounds me.
4. No, I won't, and you can't make me! So, NYEAH!
5. Yeah, I know what you said about me and that's why I don't feel comfortable around you anymore.
6. You smell like sausage! Every day! You Do! Why?
7. Super size this please, and cover it in chocolate.
8. I liked you a whole lot more when you at least pretended.
9. Because I'm too embarrassed, that's why!
10. Sometimes just because you want something doesn't mean you are supposed to get it. Deal.
NINE things about yourself:
1. That whole thing about wanting to sit in a box full of puppies isn't an exaggeration. I'd love to really do that.
2. I don't always think I'm right, and I'll respect you more if you argue a point with me instead of just rolling over and saying I'm right. Just don't be a jerk about it.
3. I really do think I like dogs more than I like people. That worries me.
4. I love my job, even though I complain. Having said that, I still hope to get a better one some day.
5. This is not to illicit compliments, I swear, but I think I'm ugly. No amount of compliments has ever changed my mind about this.
6. My favorite part of the morning is when I put on makeup. It's just fun!
7. I love the beach!
8. I love to travel, and I hope to see a great deal of the world before I kick the bucket.
9. I always put on lipgloss just to go to Wal-Mart. I still think of it as "going to town." :)
EIGHT ways to win your heart:
1. Honesty above all else
2. Treat me as if I'm important to you
3. Make an effort to really understand me and what I love
4. Unexpected kindnesses, even little ones
5. Act silly with me, even in public. I very rarely do anything too embarrassing anymore.
6. Take a real interest in my life, even the bad parts
7. Remember that sometimes a hug can say more than words ever could
8. Tolerate my obsession with chocolate and art supplies
SEVEN things that cross your mind a lot:
1. "Wow, I wish I could lose weight!"
2. "Don't fall down the stairs. Be careful on the stairs."
3. "I don't want to clean anymore. We'll just get it dirty again. What's the point?"
5. "Where are my glasses? I can't see without my glasses! I left them right here!"
6. "There are just not enough occasions to wear costumes."
7. "I'm going to eventually have to wash dishes or call the HAZMAT team to haul them away."
SIX things you do before you fall asleep:
1. Change into pajamas
2. Tell the dogs goodnight
3. Set the alarm clock
4. Say a prayer
5. Snuggle into the pillows
6. Put my cold feet on Steve
FIVE people you couldn’t live without:
1. This one isn't fair. I could live without everyone, but it wouldn't be very much fun.
FOUR things you’re wearing right now:
2. Knee socks
3. Cargo pants
4. Starfish necklace
THREE songs that fit your life perfectly:
1. "Some Days You Gotta Dance"
2. "Every Day Is A Winding Road"
3. "Miss Celie's Blues"
TWO things you want to do before you die:
1. Learn to dance.
2. Learn to play the violin.
1. I'm afraid that one day I'll realize just how very little I've impacted the lives of the people around me, but only after it's way too late to do anything about it.
Monday, December 08, 2008
Case in point: This is going to be a bit TMI for some of you, but not in a really bad way. Normally I wouldn't talk about this sort of thing because it just seems kind of indelicate, but it has to be explained in order for you to fully understand how STUPID what I did was.
Last week I told you I had been sick. At first I thought it was a cold, but I never had a fever. I then thought I might have a sinus infection, because I get those a lot. However, I didn't have headaches or a sore throat. In fact, the only problem I really had was an extremely stopped up nose (when it wasn't running), sneezing, I was tired most of the time, and my eyes were constantly burning and watering. It had gotten bad enough for me to need to take a day off from work last week, and although I was hoping it would be better by the weekend, it wasn't. Steve bought me medicine, I took vitamins, I rested, I did everything I could think of to get better, but it just wasn't happening. I even went to Steve's company Christmas party completely stoned on cough medicine and Dayquil. It was rough. Because I felt so bad, I didn't go to church yesterday and I was just about to the point here I was going to agree to go to the doctor, even though I knew I would wind up getting a shot (which I'm just terrified of for some reason.) I don't have a problem with doctors, of course, but I would have had to go to the Doc-In-A-Box and it never fails that they ALWAYS give us the same meds if we go to see them with those particular symptoms: A shot for the congestion, a bottle of codeine cough syrup, and a pack of antibiotics. I had my own reasons for believing I didn't have a sinus infection, and I didn't want to have to take antibiotics because I worry about becoming resistant to them. Also, they don't really seem to help me a lot of the time and it seemed like a waste of money. So, I looked up a few home remedies to help my stuffed up nose and found something that sounded useful. I don't know if any of you have ever heard of nasal irrigation, but it is basically where you pour warm salt water into your nose to help flush out bad things. I had done it before, but forgotten about how well it worked, so in a last ditch effort not to have to go to the doctor, I decided to try it.
I have to stop here to explain the part of the story that might be a bit TMI. Since a day or so after I started feeling sick, I had been getting a slightly bloody nose almost every day. It wasn't bad, but if I had to blow my nose...yeah, there you go. Don't make me explain further. My nose also started to burn when I would breathe, as if the air I'd breathe is was scorching my sinuses. At first I didn't know why there could be bloody noses or the pain could be happening, but I had also been using all nasal spray and drops every day so I could breathe and realized that with the constant blowing of the nose, violent sneezing, and spraying of different things up my nose, I probably had very raw nerves in there. It was unpleasant. But I digress...
I got the salt water solution ready and went into the bathroom to do the irrigation thing (I'm sorry, I know it's gross, but bear with me.) Oh. The. Humanity. I don't really recall much about the next minute or so except for extreme pain and a blinding urge to rip the nose off of my face. It didn't occur to me before I began the ill fated treatment that if I used salt water to flush out my nose, I would basically be pouring salt water onto raw nerves. It was horrible. I just stood there, swaying on the spot, trying to keep my head from exploding. I think I might have tried to scream, but no sound came out of my mouth. Needless to say, the home remedy was abandoned completely. It hurt so much. It was like someone inside of my head trying to claw their way out.
After that, I just couldn't think of what to do, except maybe one more thing. I have to take two allergy meds every day, but I was out of one of them and had forgotten to refill my prescription for a couple of weeks, and so I called it in. As soon as I got it home, I used it and could tell a difference within an hour. I didn't realize that I depended so much on that particular medication! Apparently I'm allergic enough to something in my house or at least allergic to something I came in contact with, that my head will shut down if I don't take my medicine. I'm not completely well yet, but I can already tell a huge difference. Now I'm just trying to get better from the beating my respiratory system has taken over the last week or so. Once my voice comes back, I should be fine. :)
Saturday, December 06, 2008
A CHRISTMAS MEME
Wrapping paper or gift bags? Wrapping paper, even though I hate wrapping gifts. I’m just not that good at it and it frustrates me!
Real tree or Artificial? Fake. I don’t like cleaning up after real ones and I feel guilty about killing a tree just to decorate it. Traditions be damned!
When do you put up the tree? We don’t have a set time of year, except it happens after Thanksgiving. We probably won’t bother this year though.
When do you take the tree down? Whenever we get tired of it. Sometimes it's early February before we do.
Do you like eggnog? Not even a little bit.
Favorite gift received as a child? Barbies. I looooooved me some Barbie dolls and all of the trappings that went with them. I also once received a microscope, and I used it until it pretty much comitted suicide from over use.
Do you have a nativity scene? Two or three, I think. I want to carve one of my own, though.
Hardest person to buy for? Jon, Amy’s husband. I don’t know him well enough to know what he would want.
Easiest person to buy for? My brother. He’s always happy as long as he gets to unwrap it himself. If he unwraps a See-N-Say, his joy is boundless. This NEVER changes.
Mail or email Christmas cards? Mail, but only if I remember to buy stamps. I'd rather say it in person. However, personally, I'd rather get cards only from my real friends and family instead of an impersonal card from people who barely talk to me any other time of year, especially when I know the only reason I'm getting one is because my name is on a list.
Worst Christmas? Last year, after dad died.
Worst Christmas gift you ever received? I don’t know if I have a “worst” gift, but Steve’s grandma gave me a hideous sweater once. I hid it after she went home. However, if Grandma suddenly gets over her fear of using computers and reads this...that statement is a lie. I wear it everyday.
Favorite Christmas Movie? National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. “Where’s the Tylenol!”
Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? Yes. Sometimes, other people need things more than I do. I've never done it just to get rid of something, though.
Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Sausage balls, but I'll pretty much eat anything that comes out of a Christmas tin decorated with pine cones. Nothing ventured, right?
Clear lights or colored on the tree? Clear, as long as they don’t blink. If they are going to blink, I need colored lights.
Favorite Christmas song? Oh, Holy Night
Travel at Christmas or stay home? Travel, but not far.
Can you name all of Santa's reindeer? If I sing the Rudolph song.
Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning? Both, because we have two families to visit who do things on different days. Of course, Steve and I usually never wait on Christmas to open gifts because we have no self control. We're lucky if we even get a chance to wrap them before we give them to each other.
Most annoying thing about this time of year? Greedy people who can’t be happy unless they get a lot of expensive stuff and people who shove their "selfless" good deeds in my face. Yes, I'm glad you gave your last five bucks to the salvation army bell ringer, you are truly a saint. Smarmy idget. If you spent as much time doing good as you do bragging about it, the world would truly be a better place. Now get off my lawn.
Favorite thing about this time of year? I used to have a good friend from out of town who would visit me every year around this time, and I looked forward to that all year. Now we’re all old and don’t do it anymore, but I always like to think about that. It was very special to me. I suppose that would make "good memories" the best thing for me.
Favorite ornament, theme, or color? I have 12 beautiful silver glass and prismatic glitter ornaments that I bought when I worked at Pier 1. They are beautiful when the Christmas lights hit them. I’d hang them up all year if I could find a place to do it!
> Favorite food for Christmas dinner? Dressing
> What do you want for Christmas this year? A better outlook on the future would be good. My optimism and trust in my fellow man to be returned, maybe. Oh, and a Red Ryder BB gun with a compass in the stock and this thing that tells time.
>Have a wonderful Christmas!
Friday, December 05, 2008
1) You know, I like guy's chest hair as much as the next person. Well, I probably like it more than some because that's just how I roll. However, there is a video that plays downstairs in the museum that shows a SkyLab astronaut taking a bath (you know, the whole vacuum thing). It's basically a short clip of a dude vacuuming water off of his chest hair. I can't explain why, but it makes me throw up in my mouth a little every time I see it. It bothers me so much that I really want to steal the DVD it's playing from and hide it so that I don't have to see it again. It's disturbing.
2) The dress I bought for Steve's company Christmas party arrived, and it actually looks better than I thought it would. However, it's about 4 inches too long for me, and by that I mean it drags the floor even when I'm wearing heels. I'm going to have to cut it off, and I'm scared. Luckily, it has an unfinished hem, so I won't have to figure out how to sew it back up, but I'm afraid I'm going to ruin it. However, if I don't cut it off, I'll trip on it. Sometimes, being short sucks.
3) I was out sick yesterday due to the annual bout of crud that I get every year. Luckily I had built up just enough personal time not to lose pay for the day, but now I don't have anymore. I basically slept all day and overdosed on vitimins. Hopefully I'll be much better soon, but as for right now, I wish I were back in bed!
4) Grandma is in town. She turned 86 yesterday, and I had no idea she was that old! I hope I'm as feisty as she is when I'm that age!
Wednesday, December 03, 2008
Her name is Coco. She is adorable.
My dogs would have eaten this costume before my camera was even on. :)
We came back from our annual trip to Georgia last Sunday after a very nice Thanksgiving/Christmas celebration with our Puckett & McGee Family!
I had to work on Wednesday, but was able to leave a bit early so that Mr. Lee could pick us up for our trip. We don't normally all drive together, but this year we did. Steve is still enamored with his GPS thingie, so we followed a new set of directions to Casa Puckett, and managed to get there before it was very late. We spent some time talking with Aunt Brenda, Uncle Garry, Amy and her two kiddies (who came especially to see us) before going to bed.
Thursday morning was very fun and very busy. Aunt Brenda and I cooked lots and lots of yummy things, and we actually followed a recipe for the dressing this year! It was scientific and everything! I also learned how to properly use a food processor, but only after accidentally liquefying three onions. Don't laugh! The recipe said "Finely Chopped" and I defy any of you to find onions more finely chopped than those! :) I think we pretty much cooked all day, except for those moments that we stole to take baths and change clothes. Steve and Greg went on their annual squirrel hunt, not killing anything (thank goodness). After the episode of the squirrel killing bucket that happened while we were in Myrtle Beach, I don't think I could take much more. I kind of lost track of them after a while, but mainly because I was busy cooking. I'm so glad they let me help fix Thanksgiving dinner! I love to cook, and I'm usually too tired to do it! Everyone finally arrived, with Amy bringing her own yummy part of dinner. As we sat down to eat, I realized how tired I was, and I almost dozed off into my cranberry sauce.
While serving dessert, Aunt Brenda swears that someone was throwing food at her, but we can't figure out who it could have been. We still don't know where the mashed potatoes that landed on her hand came from.
Friday we had plans to go to a Christmas party (yes, we celebrate both at the same time because it's the only time we all are together during the year) at Greg and Kristen's house, but unfortunately their little boy came down with strep throat. BOO for germs! That didn't stop Kristen from outdoing herself and somehow managing to send over a large amount of very good food that she had fixed for us! I felt bad, though, that she went to so much trouble and didn't even get to enjoy it. We all took full advantage of it, though. I think I ate my own weight in everything. I'm fairly certain that I gained roughly 23 pounds over the weekend. However, it was Thanksmas, so I was allowed to indulge. Shut. Up. We all exchanged gifts afterwards and had a very good time doing that!
Normally we would have left on Saturday, but we stayed an extra day so that Steve and Greg could watch the Georgia/Georgia Tech. game and the Auburn/Alabama game together. At least I thought that was what we were doing, but I don't remember seeing Greg until the very end of the Iron Bowl. Where were you, Greg? I also went with Amy and Uncle Garry to pick Jon, Amy's husband, up from the airport. He had gone to visit an old (and by old, I mean she was 80) friend over the holiday, so unfortunately we didn't get to see very much of him while we were there. At any rate, we had another good day of visiting, whatever the reasoning for it!
A funny/disgusting thing happened at dinner that night that I've got to share. I have to take responsibility for it, because I wasn't paying attention to the things I laid out on the kitchen island. We were going to have Thanksgiving leftovers, and when it came time to eat, I jumped into the fridge and pulled out everything I could find that resembled leftovers. Unfortunately, Uncle Garry has a broken foot, so Aunt Brenda fixed his plate and brought it to him while he was sitting in his recliner. We were all kind of scattered around the den eating, so it wasn't very obvious, but at some point I noticed Uncle Garry get up and hobble out of the den in the middle of dinner. He came back after a while and said that there was something wrong with the cranberry sauce because it tasted like pure salt and he had to go and spit it out. Aunt Brenda told him to talk to me about it because I was the one that made it, but he said, "No, not what she made, the kind from a can." He pointed to the container that was sitting between the turkey and the dressing and I started to laugh. I had to tell him that it wasn't cranberry sauce at all. Earlier in the day, I had carved up a monster sized ham so that it wouldn't take up so much room, and Aunt Brenda had saved some of the drippings to use for cooking. She put them into a small, yellow container. As you know, the gelatin from baking anything on a bone makes the drippings look like jelly, and since I hadn't been paying attention when I took the food out of the fridge, I grabbed that container and put it with the rest of the food. The yellow container made the brown drippings look red, so poor Uncle Garry got a mouthful of cold, salted, ham fat. I don't know if I should be as amused as I am about that, and if not, I'm sorry!
Sunday Steve and I accidentally overslept, and since Steve had to go into work (gee, thanks...whomever needed him to come in) we had to jump up and head out before Uncle Garry even woke up! All in all, it was a very fun visit, and I'm glad I got to be there. :)
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
My inspiration building is gone!
There was an old carpet store downtown that had a big sign that said "CARPET" over the door. The letter "T" was always out, though, so the sign always said "CARPE."
It always reminded me to go and seize the day.
It got torn down. :( Now I need to find inspiration someplace else.
Monday, November 24, 2008
So the wedding went well Saturday night with one notable exception: Me.
It wasn't that I sounded bad, unless a lot of people lied when they told me how well I did on my song, but it was more of a slight "flow" issue that I caused in the ceremony. It wasn't a terrible thing that happened, but it was both mildly embarrassing and confusing!
The very capable wedding coordinator we have in residence at our church always makes an itinerary for every ceremony she presides over. These things are exhaustive, seriously, and have everything listed in the order they are supposed to go. Everyone involved in the ceremony in any way gets a copy of this itinerary so that we all know exactly what we need to do, and to my knowledge, everything ALWAYS goes according to this plan. Sounds rather wonderful, right? Especially for those of you who know how confusing weddings can be.
Well, Saturday night I arrived at the church and realized that I had forgotten to bring my itinerary with me. I knew about where my song was supposed to be in the scheme of things, but I didn't want to wind up standing up too soon and grabbing the microphone before the sound guy was ready, or having to stand there like a giant Muppet while important wedding things were going on. I knew that the assistant wedding director would have a copy of the thing, so before the wedding started, I took a look at the list and ran back to my "soloist chair" in the shadowy corner of the church.
(FYI, that is the nice little niche where I get to sit and be as unobtrusive as possibly while I wait for my cue. I like that place because I don't have to walk in front of anyone to sing and pretty much no one sees me, only hears me, which is the way I like it. But I digress...)
Anyways, when I read the list, it said that there would be the "wedding vows & prayer" and then my solo for the unity candle. I was glad that there would be a prayer so I could would magically be at the microphone when everyone looked back towards the stage. So, I waited for my cue of "Let Us Pray." Everything was going fine, the bride and groom said their vows and exchanged their rings and suddenly, there was silence. Then there was rustling. Then there were people looking around. Then the wedding party was looking around! Apparently I had read the itinerary wrong! The harpist (yes, there was a harpist) said "I think you're supposed to be singing!" and so I ran to the microphone, my face aflame. I heard the pastor say that there was going to be a song, which wasn't part of his script, but he didn't know where I was thanks to the shadowy corner, and didn't know if I was even in the sanctuary or not! I did my song and sat down, and THEN the pastor said a prayer. Oy vey. A good thing about it is that I was so embarrassed that I didn't have a chance to be nervous about singing, so at least there was that!
Now, all I could think of what that I had contracted a terrible case of dyslexia if I actually read "Vows & Prayer" and then "Solo" after that if that wasn't what the list said. I knew it wasn't a big deal, and in reality the people looking for me probably didn't last more than a few seconds. However, I couldn't believe that I got that confused. Well, after everything was done and I was at the reception, I apologized to everyone I could think of (no one was upset, but I felt bad anyways.) I was honestly kind of worried about my eyes or brain, though, to have made that kind of mistake.
However, when I got home, I did a search for my itinerary and lookie what it said:
IT WASN'T MEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!! HAHAHHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAAAAAAAAA!
I felt much better. You could probably tell that, though.
All in all, it went well. So I live to fight another day. :)
Friday, November 21, 2008
1) Crap. I'm singing at a wedding tomorrow and I'm not at all comfortable with my song or my voice. I mean, damnit, Jim, I am not Shania Twain! There are notes in this song that defy my understanding. I'm going to have to fake it. I'm going to sound like a basset hound.
2) I am currently disgusted with clothes. Nothing I own is comfortable except for my sweatpants and giant hoodie sweatshirt, but I can't wear those everywhere! Heck, I can't wear them anywhere really. I have been looking for a decent dress to wear to Steve's Christmas party, but almost everything is sleeveless! SLEEVELESS! What the hell? Chubby girls don't like sleeveless, yet almost every danged dress in my size is sleeveless! AAAAGGGGH! I finally found a dress with sleeves on the internet, and I'm praying that it looks OK once I've gotten it. You know what though? I'm going to wear it anyways! I might wind up looking like a hooker librarian from 1976, but I don't care anymore. I'm done. I can't take shopping for clothes anymore for a while.
3) I harmed myself at the gym yesterday, and I have no idea how. I kind of have to shuffle from place to place at this point, but it is getting better. Yesterday I got up to walk down the hall and promptly fell over into the wall. :) I'm so graceful.
4) Steve and I have been playing Lego Indiana Jones, and it's so much fun! Well, except in those places where we keep falling off of cliffs or missing walkways and have to start all over. A part of me is sad that I've spent the last three days playing a video game at night. The rest of me is having too much fun to care. :)
5) I'm usually done with Christmas shopping by September, but since I wasn't sure who I'd be spending the holidays with this year, or even if I'd celebrate them at all, I didn't bother shopping. Now I'm very far behind with my Alabama family. I'm going to have to shop *gulp* during the Christmas shopping rush. I think I'll just wrap things in the house and give them to family members. What? I have nice things! Don't judge me!
Thursday, November 20, 2008
I saw a movie yesterday that scared me badly. I knew it was supposed to be a scary movie, but I didn't think it would be that bad! It was called "The Strangers." Now, if you want to watch this movie for yourself and see what happened, go away immediately! I'm going to talk about it so I'll feel better! Shoo!
OK, the story is about this young couple already having a really bad night. They were on their way home from a wedding, where the guy had proposed to his girlfriend at the reception. She said no (she wasn't ready), so understandably, they weren't happy. Their original plan was to go to his parent's - predictably isolated - summer house that night to stay and then go on a road trip the next day. Of course, telling her boyfriend she wouldn't marry him kind of changed plans for them. When they got to the house, the guy had decorated the place with candles, roses, and champagne, which didn't make either of them feel any better about what happened. Needless to say, everything was kind of sad and awkward. The guy calls his best friend and leaves a voice mail asking if he will pick him up the next day because things didn't go as planned. That's important, I swear. He goes back to the girl and while they were talking, a woman knocks on the door and asks them if "Tamera" was there. They tell her no, she had the wrong house, and she says "are you sure?" and then walks away. It was creepy, but not too weird. Inside the house things continue to be awkward, and when the girl runs out of cigarettes, the guy says he'll go and get her more and leaves her at home alone.
While he's gone, she starts hearing things. The woman who had knocked earlier comes back and knocks on the door again, and asks again if Tamera was there. The girl, already freaked out, says that she had already been there and asked that, and the woman says "are you sure?" again and then walks away. The girl calls her boyfriend and tells him that weird stuff is going on, and for him to hurry up and come home, but the phone cuts off. She keeps hearing weird things, and finally opens the curtain and sees this huge dude outside with a mask over his face. It was just a bag with eye holes cut out of it and a mouth drawn on, but it was a freakishly scary mask. She screams and hides. Her boyfriend finally comes home and she's trying to get him to understand what has been going on, but he doesn't believe her. Instead of shagging ass to the car and getting the hell out of Dodge, he tells her nothing was outside and spends valuable time trying to calm her down. When she runs to get her cell phone, it's gone. The guy goes back to his car to get his own cell and sees that his car had been destroyed. He finally believes the girl was telling the truth. It all kind of went downhill after that. The boyfriend winds up accidentally killing his best friend with a shotgun because he didn't realize the friend had felt so sorry for him that he came out there that night to get him. The three bad people (2 girls and a guy, all in masks) methodically terrorize the couple, as well as cut off all means of communication to the outside world. They wind up mentally torturing them for hours and eventually killing them, all "because they were home."
I can't say that the director didn't use some of the cheaper forms of scaring the viewer, because there were plenty of those sudden noises and misdirection that startle you. However, it was so atmospheric and, well, scary. There are scenes where it's totally quiet and the room is full of shadows, so your focused on the main actor, but eventually you realize that you see a faint silhouette or the faintest glimpse of a white mask in the shadows. They didn't use normal, scary music at all to alert you to what might happen. In fact, there isn't really any music at all in the movie except for what they show playing on an old record player in the house. The music that plays is weirdly cheerful and unsettling, because it doesn't fit what's going on. The whole movie is quiet, except for that music, with very little dialogue. The bad guys aren't supernatural, but they give off that impression because they appear and disappear so quickly, between the three of them there are only two lines that are spoken, and the masks they wear have frozen expressions that don't allow you to see them as human at all. Not to mention, you can tell they were just playing with the two people to scare them as much as possibly before they killed them, and enjoying it the whole time. I think part of what made it so scary was that it was plausible. Maybe real people would have reacted differently than the victims did, and maybe the bad guys wouldn't have been able to pull things off so smoothly, but in the realm of hard-core-crazies, you never know. The movie was probably more of a psychological thriller than a proper horror movie, but it was really, damn scary. It made getting to sleep difficult, and movies don't normally do that to me anymore.
It was scary. I watched it in daylight and it was still scary. So, there you go. Now, if you will excuse me, I need to go and find a weapon to carry around with me today.
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
I have a theory about the Comfortable Silence. They are either automatic when you click with someone immediately, they grow organically as you get to know people better, or they simply don't exist at all with some people. You never really know how much you take a comfortable silence for granted until you are faced with an uncomfortable one.
We have a new guy working here that I haven't had a chance to get to know very well. He seems really sweet and like someone I could possibly become good friends with given a chance. Yesterday I was sitting at my desk fooling around on my computer when I happened to look up and see the new guy in my doorway. He didn't really say anything, but just stood there and smiled. I said hello, thinking he needed something, and he just kept smiling and standing there. He did eventually tell me he was up there to see one of my co-workers who turned out not to be in his office, and decided to say hello to me while he was there. We sat there basically smiling and looking at each other for a while. I had no idea what to say. I mean, as most of you know I could talk to a mailbox for an hour, if it were a familiar mailbox. I suddenly started feeling awkward. I wanted very badly to make him feel comfortable and not bored, but the more that I wracked my brain for a subject, the less my mind wanted to fix on a subject. I mean, I don't really know the guy! Outwardly, I probably looked fine, except for the big smile that never left my face, but inside I was thinking "OK, what can I talk about? I don't know! He's going to think I'm an idiot if I just sit here and smile. But he's not saying anything, either! He's just standing there and smiling! Dear Lord, I don't know what to do! Now I'm awkward! Awkward! AHHHHHHHH!" It was traumatic.
We finally did end up talking a little and to kind of break the awkwardness I jumped up to try and see if I could find whatever it was he came up here to get from my co-worker. I babbled to fill up quiet time, which probably made me sound silly. We also spent a lot of time just looking at each other and smiling because we didn't know what to say. If he's going to work here and come to visit me, I'm going to need to find out more about him. I'll google him if I have to!
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Friday, November 14, 2008
1) I had a dream last night that I had died. Don't worry, though. Even though I was dead, it wasn't a bad dream. I was a ghost and I went to my funeral, which for some reason was being held in the church I attended when I was younger. I was floating down the center aisle and looking at who was there, but I didn't recognize anyone. There weren't that many people there, and they all seemed to be busy messing around with their cell phones or playing games on hand-held things. No one seemed sad, or even interested that this was a funeral! I was pissed! After it was over, I went back to someone's house (where several people from my family had gathered) and I spent a great deal of time getting revenge on their indifference by scaring the hell out of everyone by moving things around and knocking things over. :) It was funny.
2) I'm so tired this morning! When I go to the gym, I have to wake up at 4:30 to get there when it opens. It's not that I'm that dedicated about working out, but I know if I don't go first thing in the morning, I will be too tired to go after work. Normally I feel a lot better and awake after I do this, but today I feel like I've been drugged and I'm really sore. I shouldn't be sore, because I've been working out, at the very least, once a week since late May or early June of this year. That brings me to another point: I thought working out helped you lose weight! It's a lie! A lie, I say! I'm either going to have to completely stop eating altogether, or cut off a part of my body to lose weight. I don't want to do either of those things! No fair!
3) I think I had more to say, but my mind keeps wandering this morning. I'll write again if I remember what I was going to say.
Monday, November 10, 2008
We have decided that year 8 would be: The Year of Rock Band 2!
Yes, somewhere deep inside we are both 12 years old.
We actually bought the game Saturday, you know, since we'd probably be busy on Tuesday. Heh, yeah...that's why. We've been having fun playing the game, although there are some things we haven't figured out. Steve plays the guitar and I play the drums. I kind of suck at the drums, but I am better at them than Steve is, owing, no doubt, to my 4 years of being in the percussion section of my high school band. Granted, I didn't play the drums. I played the xylophone. However, I guess since I once hit an instrument with sticks, that makes me the drummer! So far I can only play in "easy" mode, but I only started playing this week. I'll practice and soon I'll be better than that one armed fella from Def Lepard!
Saturday, November 08, 2008
1. Put Your iTunes, Windows Media Player, Winamp, etc on shuffle.
2. For each question, press the next button to get your answer.
3. YOU MUST WRITE THAT SONG NAME DOWN NO MATTER HOW SILLY IT SOUNDS.
4. Put the artist after a dash following the song name.
5. Put any comments in brackets.
How would you describe yourself?
How do you feel today?
What is your life's purpose?
What is your motto?
What do you think about very often?
What is your life story?
The Saga Begins - Weird Al [My story would have less Gunguns, but it's close to the truth.]
What do you want to be when you grow up?
Breathless -The Coors [Hopefully in the amazed way and not like, emphysema or something]
What will you dance to at your wedding?
The Way You Look Tonight - Frank Sinatra [Not bad. Now to find a Sinatra fan who'll marry me!]
What will they play at your funeral?
What is your hobby/interest?
What do you want most of all?
What is your greatest fear?
What is your darkest secret?
What is your favorite thing in the world?
If you could have one wish, what would you wish for?
What is your theme song?
The next time you hear this song (aside from now, that is), you must dance.
Why will you post this meme?
It's Not Unusual - Tom Jones [HAHAHAHAHA! It's really not!]
Maybe this just proves have very confused taste in music.
Wednesday, November 05, 2008
1) OK, so Obama won the election. Good for him! I'm not going to lie and say I voted for him, but to be frank, I practically eenie-meenie-miney-moed in this election. I'm not proud of that, because I would much rather vote because I believe in someone and what they stood for. There were only one or two tiny things that I liked about McCain that I didn't like about Obama, so that's how I chose. However, I want to say that I think the new president-elect seems very sincere about his desires to make a difference and I hope the changes he makes are ultimately positive ones. Now, of course, I get to go to a family gathering in the nest couple of days and listen to the racist side of my family bitch and moan about a black man being president. Beer me strength.
2) I'm so tired. Steve had to go into work last night to some work on a network thing (I'm not going to pretend to act as if I understood what it was) and I went with him. We got there at a bit after 10 p.m. and stayed there until after 2 a.m. this morning. I mainly sat in his office and read catalogs and played Solitaire with real cards! I don't like playing solitaire with real cards because you have to shuffle them and set them up, and I'm not good at shuffling cards. I had no idea we had been there so long until about an hour before we left. Steve showed off all of his high tech toys, and I got to see him and his co-worker Alan in action. I was duly impressed. However, I've decided that if I had to do their job, I'd shoot myself. I just would. Server rooms are some of the most depressing places on earth.
3) I was able to get in touch with a friend of mine from high school after Googling his name the other day. Well, I say we were friends, but we had a love/hate relationship for a long time after we went together for a while and then broke up. Ultimately, though, we ended up friends after we realized how dumb it was to not like each other for reasons neither one of us could determine. He makes me feel dumb, though. He doesn't do it on purpose, but he has a PhD in Secondary Education (or some such thing) and is an assistant professor at JSU. I only got my BA last year! Oh well, he was always more driven than me, so I'm proud of him. He told me he was on his way to Texas to present and that his oldest son will be 6 this year! So now I feel dumb and old! :)
4) My novel writing isn't going so well. It isn't that I don't know what to write, but I have a problem with adding in too much exposition, and it makes my story all convoluted. I didn't expect my first attempt at writing to be All Quiet on the Western Front or anything, but I kind of figured I'd do better than I am. Oh well, it's all about the journey, right? Anyone? Eh, I'll do my best. That's all I can do!
5) Here is another picture from St. Louis, just for funzies. It's kind of a neat shot, even if it's a bit crooked and dark. I wish I'd had a tripod, but I don't tend to visit friends with a portable studio in tow. This was taken from the top of Bro. Josh's building that he lives in.
Monday, November 03, 2008
1) Voting day is tomorrow and I'm not comfortable with who I'm going to vote for. Quite honestly, I'm not comfortable with either candidate. I want to vote for who I believe would be best for the job due to their stance on a lot of different issues, but it's been so difficult to even know for sure what those things were this time. I mean, if I want to vote for someone who has been on SNL more often or who has the best commercials, I wouldn't have had a problem deciding. However, this time it seems to be all about hype and I don't want to vote on hype. I am usually excited about voting, but this time I'm not because I don't know if either person is going to be good for the country. I don't like to be "Meh" about the person who is going to run our country.
2) Steve got to experience Fathead Rudepants at the gym today. He's the guy who gets on a stationary bike for five minutes, but feels he needs to cut off the TV in front of him before he can pedal. Apparently he flipped off the TV that someone was watching this time. Too bad a fight didn't break out! I'd like to see those geezers in a dog pile!
3) I'm writing a novel! Wait, let me rephrase: I'm attempting to write a novel. Because Amy inspired me, I decided to join NaNoWriMo this year. For the uninitiated, that is "National Novel Writing Month" and it's where you try (emphasis on try) to complete a 50,000 word novel in a month. It sounds daunting, but I'm going to try! So far I have 368 words or so (heh heh heh). I'm glad that the book doesn't have to be any good or even publishable. I just want to be able to mark "Write a Novel" off of my "Things To Do" list. Go me!
4) I still haven't pulled myself from the sticky pool of complete apathy long enough to tell you about my trip to St. Louis, but here are a couple of pictures to tide you over. Enjoy!
Metropolis, IL (I think). No, I wasn't intentionally trying to kick Superman in the crotch.
Jesuit Hall, St. Louis, MO. Steve and Bro. Josh in his Jedi Robes. On one of our walks, it was very windy and his cape thing kept getting tangled around my head. True story.
The Arch, St. Louis, MO. No, I didn't go into the arch (already done that) but no picture of St. Louis would be complete without the arch, right? I had to lay down in a parking lot to get this shot. Also, I hate wearing sneakers with those pants. I don't know why.
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Monday, October 27, 2008
Something is wrong with my brain, seriously. My perspective of time is all out of whack and I'm forgetting really random, yet completely familiar, things. Steve went to help Anthony sort out a computer problem the other day and he left while I was reading something on the internet. I looked up at the clock and thought "Good grief, he's been gone for an hour! It's not time for him to be there yet, but he's gone! Where did he go?" I called his cell and he was in the car driving over there. He had only been gone for 15 minutes. It was really strange. I was so confused that it scared me. That has happened more than once over the past couple of weeks. Does stress do this to people? Anyone? Bleh. I'm not old enough for memory issues of this magnitude.
In other news, we just got back from a week long trip to St. Louis, which was fun. I couldn't "Blog Along the Way" because I didn't have much access to a computer, but I'll tell you all about it when my brain is back in working order. Wait...no. I'll tell you about it before then, because that could take years! I'll post about it soon. :)
Friday, October 17, 2008
1) Now that I'm fairly established as the "Friendly Neighborhood Sign Lady" (and yes, I sign emails that way when sending something out en masse) I am given a bit more leeway to do different things with my special event signage. The standard signs are white, with red and blue borders, a SpRocket logo at the top and "welcomes" the name or logo of the group having the event. However, since we've built the Davidson Center, we are getting more things like wedding receptions and rehearsal dinners and a lot of our guests want signs that match their wedding colors or invitations or whatever. That probably would have been a no-go at some point, but now that we are hurting for money, people who pay get what they want! :) I like doing the wedding and rehearsal dinner signs because it gives me a chance to do a bit more design work than usual and I get to use fonts other than Helvetica Black. Occasionally I get a request for an culturally specific event that I'm completely clueless about, so I have to be very careful about colors or symbols or whatever. Yesterday I got a request for a sign for something called a Simcha, which the internet tells me is a Jewish celebration that can be for anything. I am not Jewish and I know all of one Jewish person (and as far as I know, she is from a Jewish family but doesn't follow the lifestyle). Ergo, I was lost. At any rate, since it was for a rehearsal dinner, I knew I didn't have to be too specific with traditions, even if I did want to be sensitive about their traditions. So, I researched and downloaded things and did a lot of rearranging and starting over until I had what I believed was both appropriate and pretty. Then I checked to see what wording was requested for the sign and it said "Shalom, Y'all". I kid you not. I was not aware that we had Jewish rednecks in Huntsville, or anywhere else in the world, but there you go. You learn something new everyday. SIGH.
2) I watched a very scary movie on YouTube yesterday! Normally I can watch scary movies and they don't bother me, but this one was freaky. It's called [REC] and it's basically the Spanish-language original that the movie "Quarantine" is based on. Steve hates horror movies, so I knew I'd have to wait until it came out on DVD before I'd get a chance to see Quarantine, so I decided to watch the original with the subtitles. If you like scary movies, I suggest you watch this one (you can find it on Google Video, too). It's very claustrophobic and freaky. I watched it during my lunch break yesterday and I was listening to it with my earphones in. There were a lot of jump-out-at-you moments, so I can only imagine the sounds coming from my office: silence then "AHHH!" more silence then "NOOO!" It was the kind of movie that made it hard for me to sleep, so it must have been scary. The only other movie that does that to me is The Exorcist, and I refuse to watch that one ever again.
3) My voice is almost gone. I ran out of allergy meds on the same day that I had to replace a sign outside. The sign is planted in a built up flower bed that is about waist high on me and the flowers poked me in the face the whole time. I have been fighting my body's urge to get any worse, and I even bought the kind of allergy medicine that you have to get by giving a DNA sample and 8 forms of identification to the pharmacy. If I but anything else with pseudoephedrine in it in the next couple of days, the FBI will come and cart me off. I'm on their Meth watch list now, I suppose. Of course, we also have the nice cough syrup that Steve got the last time his allergies were acting up, so I take that too. It makes me all warm and tingly. DARN POLLEN. It's freaking October! Go away already!
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
It's been a while, but I'll be honest, I haven't really felt like writing lately.
No, don't worry, everything is OK right now and hopefully getting better as the days go on. I've just been in a kind of "blah" about everything, including my blog. Blasphemy, I know. I suppose it's my subconscious' way of saying "Well, you just spent 3 1/2 months in a kind of borderline insane/hurt/losing-ones-mind hell, so maybe we'll just try to see what it's like to be calm and a bit bored for a while, shall we?" My subconscious is cool like that, sometimes.
(This next part is a bit personal, so for anyone sensitive to that kind of thing who doesn't want to read it, you can go now.)
So here's an update: things have been better for the past couple of weeks. Steve and I are working on making things better and I'm trying very hard to deal with everything that happened without going crazy. It isn't easy, but I'm doing OK with it. My main problem right now, even though it isn't a constant issue, is being angry. Not mad, not irritated, but ANGRY. It's a scary feeling, because I don't have much (if any) experience with true anger and I don't like it. I can be rolling along, feeling fine, and then it hits me and I find myself standing there shaking and wanting to hurt people. It ruins my day. I know I could never hurt any of them as bad as they did me, but I want to try. I want to make them suffer and I hate the way that feels. I now understand why wrath is one of the 7 deadly sins, because it feels evil. However, I'm working on dealing with the anger and I think I'm doing OK. Please don't think I'm going to wind up on a roof with a sniper rifle or anything like that, though. :) Apparently it is a level of the grief process, which our counselor said I would go through, and that it's normal, but I really hope it goes away soon. I pray for the anger to be taken away and to be given charity, like it says in 1 Corinthians 13, in its place. I'm certain that I'll have that in time. I just wish it was soon.
Other than that, things seem to be going OK. We have good days and not so good days, but we are both trying to figure out how to do the things for each other that need to be done. It's an ongoing process and there is always the chance we just can't fix it, but so far so good. I'm kind of a basket case at times, but honestly, I believe I have the right to be. Don't you?
I know that some of you don't understand why I didn't just leave and take everything with me, but that never seemed like the right thing to do, to me at least. On TV and the movies, it seems so cut and dried. When something like that happens, there is nothing you can do but turn your back and walk away. However, it wasn't like that for me at all. I had so many people giving me advice and telling me what I should do, I just ended up confused. It's not that I didn't appreciate the advice, and it wasn't that it was bad advice (most of it was excellent, actually), but I knew I'd eventually have to make up my own mind about how to deal with things no matter what I was told. After many "dark nights of the soul" I finally just had to tell God to take it, because I couldn't deal with it anymore. I couldn't deal with it mentally, physically or emotionally any longer or I probably would have literally gone insane. When I finally lay it down, things began to get easier. I believe that we are doing the right thing at this point, and not just because it was what I originally wanted. It's not easy. I know that quite a few of you who read this blog don't really believe in God and probably think I've deluded myself into following this path out of some kind of martyr's obligation. I can respect that, I guess. It's not true, but I can respect it. I just also hope that you realize I'm not nearly as naive as that. :)
Anyways, enough of that. I just wanted to get that out of the way so that I can hopefully move on and write about nice things here again. I miss being silly and would like to get back to it as soon as I can.
Wednesday, October 08, 2008
Monday, October 06, 2008
The trip went really well. We stayed in a nice place called Carribean Resort & Villas, which was one of the last hotels on the shore before you get to the private sea-side houses (one of which I'm going to live in one day...hopefully) and it was much nicer than I was expecting. I thought that Myrtle Beach was just another cheesy beach town like Panama City, FL. Not that I'm saying Panama City doesn't have merits, but it is kind of skeezy in places. :) We were there from Tuesday to Friday, so we even missed the weekend traffic. It was quiet, with things winding down from the tourist season, but we did manage to get there right in the middle of the Biker Convention. Fortunately or unfortunately, none of the bikers asked me to be their old lady, but there's always next year!
I got up super early on Wednesday morning to watch the sun rise over the ocean. I couldn't find anything on TV that would tell me what time the sun was supposed to come up, so I finally just went down with my chair and waited it out. It was beautiful, and I got a lot of nice pictures of the sun coming up. I'll post a few here later on. I watched the sun come up, took pictures for myself, took pictures for an elderly couple who wanted to be together in front of the sunrise, and collected shells. There weren't that many nice shells out this time of year, at least not ON the beach, but I found quite a few I liked. I'm a scavenger. Don't judge me. It wasn't all lovely, though. When I was getting ready to go back inside, I felt something hit me, but didn't think anything of it. It was only later, when I was putting away some clothes, that I noticed that a sea gull pooped on me and that is what I felt hit me. I mean seriously, there were only about 6 seagulls out there, there were dozens of people, and it pooped on me. Figures. I also managed to get attacked by a fairly unusually large wave. Steve was watching me get into the water, and I'm not kidding when I say that the biggest wave I'd seen all day rose up righteous and body slammed me into a bed of broken sea shells and drug me along. It probably didn't take that long for me to get free and get back on the beach, but it felt like I was tossed around for an hour. I had sand and crushed sea shells in places that I didn't realize I had, enough sand in my bathing suit bottoms to build a castle, and I don't know how I did it, but the top of my suit was filled with tiny sea shells, too. Steve was laughing at me when I finally got out and struggled back to our beach chairs, but he stopped when he realized I was bleeding from two very abraded places on my left leg. Those hastared shells were SHARP. I managed not to bleed on too much, but I stayed out of the ocean after that. We spent the rest of our outdoor time that day in the pool and in the lazy river that our hotel had. I am also not sure what kind of seashells got into my suit and on to my skin, but they stuck tight and wouldn't come off. It took me almost two showers to get all of them off. I was still finding pieces of the shells in my hair over the next two days!
Wednesday was also the one year anniversary of when my father died, and I don't know what it says about me, but I was glad not to be at home. I spent that morning thinking about him while I walked on the beach. It made me think of the rare times my family got to go on vacation, so they were good thoughts. It helped not being at home where the memories were much less pleasant, even though I probably should have been near my mom and sister. I got to grieve for him in my own way, so I'm not sorry.
We spent the rest of our trip just relaxing, eating, and shopping. I finally got to go to a World Market and a Ripley's Aquarium! We also ate at a place called "The Melting Pot" which was nice, but kind of expensive. I joked with Steve that it was probably the only time I could ever convince him to cook his own dinner. :) It was a really nice trip and I think it helped being away from things for a few days. We got some important talking done, which was good, and we just used the time to try and have fun together, which we did. It was a good trip.
Friday, September 26, 2008
1) Saw the season opener of "The Office" last night and loved it. However, I feel like kind of a huge nerd for being excited that Jim and Pam finally got engaged. Hey, I can live vicariously through fake people's joy, can't I?
2) I got a honey-wheat bagel for breakfast this morning, which was sweet and yummy for the most part. Halfway through, I took a bite from a spot that apparently had been bumped up against a garlic bagel because it went from sweet to OMG, Keeping-Vampires-Away! It hit before I noticed, so I had a bite of strong garlic and grape jelly. I don't recommend that combination. Bleck.
3) Today is my last day of work before my annual lay-off. I'll only be off a week instead of two, but I don't mind. Maybe I'll go on a trip or something, who knows? I kind of wish I didn't have to be anywhere around here next week, because Wednesday will mark the one year anniversary of the day my dad died and the beginning of a whole year of complete, fucking sucktitude. I know that sounds overly dramatic to some of you, but alas, it's the truth. When the one day of the year that was actually good was my birthday (and you know how my birthdays usually go) then that should be proof enough for you. I want the good things in my life back. I miss them.
Monday, September 22, 2008
1) It's official. I'm addicted to Iron Chef. Ever since I found out I can watch the original Japanese version on YouTube, it's all I seem to do when I have the time. I like the American version of the show a lot, but there is something about Chairman Kaga that makes me smile. I also like the fact that they dub the voices with people who sound like they are commentating for Monday Night Football. Good stuff.
2) I didn't go to the gym this morning because I couldn't make myself get out of bed. I woke up, I argued with myself, I shamed myself and I still didn't go. That is not a good way to deal with exercise. Too bad I can't just do it in my sleep.
3) I fell down in the kitchen last night while on my way to throw something away. My big toe got caught in my pajama pants cuff and I just went over. Hard. I skinned my wrist and banged my elbow on my left side, and I have bruises on my right knee. I just kind of lay in the floor for a while in a daze. Such is my life lately, I suppose.
Monday, September 15, 2008
1) I need to get gas, badly. I meant to get some last Monday when I was off from work, but I was too tried after my morning of doctor appointments and errands. Had I known the fuel-price insanity that would begin in my town, I would have filled up the tank, the trunk and the back seat too. Now I can't find too many places that even have gas, so I'm boned. I am going to have to find a place on the way home or I'm going to get stuck somewhere.
2) Blerg, I hate fall allergies. I was out of work again last Thursday because of them and I kept dozing off anytime I got still yesterday. Right now I feel as if my muscles are on fire and my sinuses are stuffed with fiberglass insulation. Lots of fun.
3) The Sprocket is going to change it's hours this fall to save some money. They are going to be closed Mondays and Tuesdays from November 1 till some time in February. It won't change my hours, thank goodness, but customer service personnel will be changed. All I really care about is that for a few weeks, we'll be able to do repairs and put things up without having to do it in front of an audience. :)
4) I need to get to work! I've been sitting here doing nothing for long enough. Have a wonderful day, you guys.
Saturday, September 13, 2008
I know some of you must think I'm sort of an insufferable whiner or something, but this is honestly very, very hard. Hard for both of us.
Please for more prayers, if you have some to spare.
That is all.
Tuesday, September 09, 2008
I just wanted you guys to know I'm still alive. If you've e-mailed or called and haven't heard back from me, it's only because I've been in "Hiding Mode" lately. Please don't think I'm ignoring you or anything. Hopefully I will be more responsive soon. Thanks for checking in with me.
I hope things are well with you all.
Friday, September 05, 2008
Thursday, September 04, 2008
Wednesday, September 03, 2008
Tuesday, September 02, 2008
I'm afraid about what I'm going to hear. I really wish everything was back to normal again.
This is my foot in Key Largo. Well, on the side of the road in Key Largo. We were stuck in traffic.