Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Meet Hermie

Because I'm a college student, and find myself without tons of free time. Because I was bored coming home from work, attempting to drive through construction. I named the guy who insisted on shoving his car right up my a**.

Meet Hermie. The blue hemorrhoid.

Consider this a warning, his Kia will be visiting you on your commute soon.

PS. I only know it's a Kia because it passed me and flipped me off for doing the speed limit. Go figure.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011


As a college student, it's important to have goals. Most instructors at the first of the year want you to tell them what kind of grade you will likely get in the class and then, if living in a world that you ruled, what you would actually get.  Obviously in the world that you ruled, you would get everything your little heart desired. Without all the blood, sweat, and tears.

Let's face it, the real world if vastly different. I might want that A in Spanish, but without putting in lots (and lots, and lots, and lots, and..) the odds of that happening are zilch. Goals are important. They give you a finished result to work towards, but on the other hand they can be all consuming or even non motivating.

I'm overweight. Hello, my name is Abby, and I'm chunky.

This is where you say Hi Abby, then hand me chocolate.

I spend approximately 25 minutes of my day riding on the bus. Most days, I spend that time thinking about work, school, my husband, my lack of social life, or trying to talk myself into talking to strangers today. Apparently that's a lesson that I learned a little too well as a child. Yet today I thought about what good grades I got last semester. About how, even when I didn't feel like it, I stayed up and I did homework, and I studied, and I got a tutor, and about the A's and B's I finished the semester with. I took a Pass or else attitude. I had to pass my classes. I have to maintain a high GPA to keep from getting kicked out of the program. I don't have a choice. I have too. If I want that job I keep dreaming about, I have to do it. Whether I feel like it or not.

I wonder, where I would be if I could learn how to put that same effort into weight loss. Where would you be? Could you be working on your own college degree? Could you be 30 pounds lighter? Could you have the job you wanted? If you just showed the same amount of time and commitment to yourself and your own body that you gave everything else, what could you have accomplished?

I could be 30 pounds thinner. I could be more than that. But instead, I'm still sitting here. Waiting on myself to commit to me.

Sounds goofy when you think of it that way, doesn't it? And yeah, it does. But, if I'm not happy, then that job, that college experience, that _______, doesn't matter.

Maybe, this year, my 32nd year, will be the year that I can learn to commit some time to me for me. Maybe, you can find the time to commit to yourself too.

"So, self, I've been thinking. We've been together a long time, and I really can't imagine my life without you. Without you, I'm just a body, an empty shell of a person without you by my side."

(Presents beautiful, sparkly, shiny ring in a Tiffany blue box)

"Will you marry me?"


Now, maybe just a little tweak to my calendar here, and a pinch there and I can schedule in some time to sweat. Other than sex.

Monday, August 29, 2011


They say a picture is worth a thousand words. Sometimes "they" are right.

I can't say or do anything that honors this soldier and his family more than this simple picture.

Dog Mourns

Today, on a random Monday, its important to remember those soldiers and their families who sacrifice their lives, their son's, their daughter's, their wives, their fathers, and their mothers, so that we can experience a freedom that so many others can only dream of.

Read the article, then tell me that animals are incapable of feeling a loss and of feeling love. If you can, then you can't be human.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Five Question Friday

It's been crazy in Metal world today. When things are busy like this, it reminds of how much I love my job.

My first day of classes went good, I think I'm going to enjoy both professors and hopefully both classes, but one of them is a math class, so I'm not counting on enjoying any of that. Today (in about 30 minutes) I will head out to my 2nd day of classes. Spanish and History of Rock and Roll. Yep - I'm THAT student. But what else was I supposed to take for a visual and performing arts credit?!?

Busy, busy weekend planned. Helping a good friend move tomorrow, a trip to the grocery store (hopefully to stock up for school supplies for next semester on clearance), and meeting with a few friends for John to do his fantasy football team draft. It's his first year playing, and I'm just going along for the ride.

Have a happy weekend! Stay out of Irene's path!

1. Did you make any fun purchases this week?

Yes! My husband and I bought new phones! No more part-time phones for us (hopefully). We are getting rid of our blackberries that don't work half the time and we are upgrading to Androids. I have no idea the specifics, but the husband called and said it was a done deal. So...ok.

2. If you could go to any musical concert, what would it be?

Hmmm. I would like to see Kenny Chesney (again) and the Zac Brown Band. I heart Kenny Chesney and the Zac Brown Band just has awesome music. You can't go wrong either way.
3. What is your least fav/ most fav house chore?

I hate cleaning the bathrooms. Loathe, intense dislike. Nothing else really bugs me that much, and I'm a stress cleaner, so I clean a lot. Plus I'm a neat freak, so that helps too.

Most fav would have to be laundry. You start it, then depending on the cycle get 40+ minutes to do other things before you mess with it again for 10 minutes and then bam, 40+ minutes of freedom.

4. Would you prefer new appliances or clothes?

Umm. Neither. I hate shopping. Yes, I know, I'm un-American and un-girl for that matter. But, if I had to pick (and mostly because I have recently bought all new appliances) clothes.

5. Miracle Whip or Mayo?

Ta-mate-o Tah-mat-o

Is there really a difference? Other than fat and calories? Honestly, I buy whatever is on sale when we need it. I typically use 1 regular sized jar a year. We don't use much, so we aren't too picky. Yes, I'm aware, I'm weird.

Thursday, August 25, 2011


As I was riding the bus to get to my first class, I had a sudden realization. Today, I have a better understanding of what Papa meant when he kept telling me that a college degree doesn't make you smarter. Its life that does that.

I don't like new situations. I don't like being thrown into a room full of people I don't know. I really don't like it when the two guys sitting behind me are talking about which high schools they just graduated from and I realize how different I am from them.

They haven't struggled with infertility, they haven't had to worry about losing their job and putting food on the table to feed their family. Those are life experiences that the will eventually have, unfortunately. Those experiences will change them, they will teach them, they will make them stronger.

Yet today these "kids" have taught me a valuable lesson. They don't care. The only person in the room bothered by my age is me. They are too busy in their own lives and living off their own experiences that they don't care that they were 6 when I graduated high school. They don't care. I'm what they want to be when they graduate. They want to get married and have a family and a job that they love.

I didn't realize, until today, that college teaches you more than just the things found in books. It teaches you that sometimes, no matter how much you don't want too, that you have to do things alone. It teaches you that sometimes you have to stand on your own two feet and that you have to be the oldest or youngest in the room. You have to learn how to stand alone before you can ever truly begin to support someone else.

I realize that for some people, they have had to stand on their on for a while. Every one's life is different, their experiences different. What they take away from each experience and each situation is different, yet similar at the same time.

Even though I've been in the real world for a while now, I know that no matter what, there are still things that I'm going to have to face alone. I also know that I have to learn that I worry more about what other people think about me, than what they actually do. I have got to learn to be comfortable in my own skin. They don't care that I'm 31, they just want to pass the class and graduate. That I can relate too.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Meet Dale

This was my computer when it was diagnosed with an incurable virus and crashing hard drive.

Meet Dell after Brain surgery, a few joint replacements, and a face lift.
I like to call this Dale's midlife crisis.*

*AKA - me, seriously bored at work without my computer.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

It's Funny What You Miss

I've always heard the saying that when you lose someone you miss the oddest things. It's true.

When my grandfather died, I missed chocolate covered cherries at Christmas. There was a big display and I burst into tears in the middle of Wally World. I missed the smell of Beech Nut Chewing Tobacco.

Sunday I was having a cleaning orgy, cleaning things that are typically skipped over every week, so that things were nice and clean before I started school on Thursday and my life revolves around homework. I opened our microwave to wipe it out, and the sudden urge of how much I missed Papa, John's grandfather hit me. I hated to clean out the microwave when we lived with him. Papa was notorious for not covering up anything when he microwaved it. And if 2 minutes would sufficiently do the job, he did it for 3, just for good measure. So there was constantly something blowing up in the microwave.

When we went to Abilene with my parents, there was a Gaither's music display. We didn't share the love of the Gaither's like Papa did, but that display in Cracker Barrel, made my heart ache. I missed Papa more that day and more on Sunday than I had before.

Then today, an older guy came in at work, whose hands looked like Gangie's, and I missed him today too.

It makes me wonder, what little things will I miss about my parents. What little things would I miss, if John were to die before me? What would they miss about me? What would they wish that I had done differently? What would they wish that they had done differently?

Friday, August 19, 2011

Five Question Friday

It's my last Friday as a free woman! Next Friday will be back to the homework grind. Part of me is looking forward to it, and the other part of me is dreading it. I am ready to have something to do at work, but I'm not ready for all of the homework.

We have plans tonight to have dinner with some friends, I'm looking forward to the laughter and jokes that we will share. With all the stress of the last few months we can use the fun to decompress.

I have a cooking orgy planned to try and stock the freezer with a few extra meals before school, that way on the extra busy nights, we can have a home cooked meal and not worry with eating out. It's a win-win situation for both of us.

Enjoy your weekend!

1. Do you close the bathroom door when you are home alone?

::hangs head in shame:: Nope. When I'm home alone, I leave the door wide open. I don't shut it at all. If a burglar were to come in they would see me in all my glory. I have no shame. But when my husband is home, I shut the door. Because when I poop, I want privacy. Otherwise, I leave the door open.
2. You have to walk around with a word on your forehead. That word describes you. One word. What is it?

I had to ask my husband on this one. His first word - beautiful. At first I was going to protest that, but then I got to thinking about it. And yes, I am beautiful. I may not have the prettiest face, or the best body in the world, but my heart, it is most definitely beautiful. I'm loving, I'm giving, and I'm thoughtful. And I can give you 20 people to email who would agree. Most of them, my husbands cousins and their families.
3. What store do you refuse to shop at and why?

Lowe's grocery store. The few times that I have been in there, the food seems to be cheap and old. Of course this was a good few years ago. I haven't been in that store in about 8ish years. Otherwise I'm not too picky. I primarily stick with Wally World, TarJay, Cato's, Fashion Bug, Lane Bryant, and Hobby Lobby.

4. If you participated in arranged marriages for your child(ren), who would you choose for your child(ren)?

I don't know that I would participate even if I had too. I think that part of growing up involves having your heart broken. You need to have your heart broken at least once to truly understand how relationships work. You need to have your heart broken so that you can really understand love.
5. If you could pick how and when you would die, would you?

I have went back and forth on this one. And my final answer - no. Life only has meaning because there is an ending. Granted, if you knew when it was ending you would have the opportunity to make it count. You could say your goodbyes and make amends, but at the same time, you would know. You would make the most of it, and so would everyone else. It would be penciled in on someone's calender. On the other hand without knowing, you have the freedom to make plans and live your life. You don't get caught up into "getting everything in" before you die.
The only thing that I would pick is how. I simply want to go to sleep and not wake up. My grandparents, Papa, all went that way. It's peaceful. It's painless. And I would be unaware, which would be a blessing in its self.
Happy Friday! I hope you have a wonderful weekend! It's the last one of August!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

My Days are Numbered

One week. That's all the time I have left. I'm not sure if I should be thrilled or disappointed. In one week, less stressed, more relaxed, more free time me disappears until December as I go...BACK TO SCHOOL!!!!

Part of me is thrilled, part of me is dreading it. Because let's face it, I could live with learning the stuff, but less homework. Less stress. More of a life. So much of last semester was a blur that I honestly don't remember it. And I'm afraid that much of this semester will be the same. There are classes I'm looking forward to and classes I dread.

I'm looking forward to taking one more step towards a degree and the life that I want. Yes, I realize that my plans may not coincide with the plans that God has lined out for me, but I still feel like I'm where I should be, doing what I need to be doing. I still feel like I'm doing the right thing.

It's hard to believe that it has snuck up on me like this. I have started having the butterflies again. I felt so lost the first few days of classes because I felt like I was so old and out of my league. But now, well, now there are familiar faces in the crowd. Now there are familiar hallways and offices and rooms that helped me gain confidence in myself. And if worse comes to worse there is that GPA that makes me proud of my first semester of college, of school in 13 years. I can do it. I will do it. I can do anything I make up my mind too, as long as I want it bad enough.

Sure, there are things that aren't done, like unpacking, cleaning up the garage, a stocked freezer of food so my husband doesn't have to worry about dinner. My Scentsy Party details lined up and ironed out, and Christmas shopping. I still have a week, so there is hope for some of that. But not all of that, I don't want to be all stressed out about all that other stuff before I start school. So, we are taking a what happens, happens mentality and what doesn't, will be worried about over my Christmas break. This may be the year of the gift cards.

So ready or not, Texas Tech, here I come.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Traveling with Parents

I love my parents. I promise, I really do. There are days, and times though, where I can imagine happily choking them.

If I ever have the urge to go out of town with them again, please shoot me. Please. You have my permission.

This past weekend, we went to the big city of Abilene, Texas to spend some time with my niece (who turned 11 yesterday) and nephew. My parents went too. So they could see the kids and spend some time with both of them before school started and play the birthday fairy. 

My parents aren't the most organized or the best planners. We left on Friday and came home early Sunday afternoon. We needed clothes for 2 days. They had like 8 bags of various sizes. 8 bags. For 2 days. My husband and I had one big suitcase, a cooler bag with snacks (in case we were hungry after swimming) and 2 smallish boxes with the kids birthday stuff in it. Obviously we didn't come home with the boxes, we carried everything into the hotel and out of the hotel in one trip. No luggage rack needed. My parents on the other hand, had a luggage rack half full. For 2 days.

I don't know if it's because they are retired, or because they are old, or because they think that they are old, but they have no plan. It's a go with the flow mentality. Which is fine, when others aren't involved. I'm a planner. I like to have a game plan, and when dealing with my step sister, plans are always good, because she never has any. Kinda like my parents. Figuring out when to eat and where to go was like pulling teeth. It was an ordeal that shouldn't have been. A simple, pizza sounds good, or whatever would have been nice. Instead it was a "oh, I don't care." I'm pretty sure that my head came close to exploding a few dozen times.

Then it was "I'm tired, and too old, too fat, too sick because I smoke 12 packs a day" to have any desire to do anything other than sit in a hotel room all day. I get that they aren't in the best of health. I get that. I do. But, lose some weight, quit smoking, DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT. Don't just sit around and complain how crappy you feel when you won't do anything about it. My grandmother did that, and it drove me crazy, and now I see the same behavior in my mother and father. It sucks. But to 2 adults who are in good health, sitting around the hotel on a Saturday afternoon, doesn't really sound all that appealing. We are usually out doing things and moving around. We ended up going to the zoo. Me, John, Sophie, and Scott. Both of the kids whined because it was hot and humid and after 10 minutes they were ready to go. We spent 2 hours at the zoo. It was fun. It hot and humid and getting miserable. I will give them that.

They aren't planners and like to have a game plan in place. They aren't OCD like I am. They didn't have to have their car cleaned out and detailed before they left. They didn't stay up late the night before cleaning their house so that they could come home to a nice sparkly clean place. Nope, they stayed up late doing laundry and packing, which I had done days before. That's them. That's me.

However there were times that I just wanted to scream at them to get there crap together and act like an adult. Not like some person who was lost and didn't have a clue. Yet, they have been like that my entire life. My mom has always been a procrastinator to the extreme. She has always waited until the last minute to pack and do laundry. She doesn't do laundry now until she is out of underwear. And only then, she digs around hoping for clean ones to put it off a few more days. My dad is different, he gets all excited about something and then his excitement quickly fizzles out.

Then there is the smoking. After my dad had his heart attack they had quit, for about 8 months. They were fighting all the time, and being snippy with each other, and decided that they would start back and it would solve all of their problems. They don't realize that they are adding to them. My father couldn't even walk from the restaurant to the truck without huffing and puffing like he had just ran a hard mile. It was maybe, maybe 40 feet. Maybe. It screws with my asthma, Sophie's asthma and it makes me and them smell like we have wallowed in an ashtray and not taken a shower in days.

There were parts of the weekend that were fun. There were parts that I could have done without. I just wish that they would try to be more willing to meet us halfway, than just sit back and let the majority of the decision making be done by John and myself.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Admitting when I'm wrong

Last week I wrote a post called "Teachers". One of my readers (Hi Andrea!) Left a comment that has had me doing a lot of thinking, and instead of replying only to her comment, I wanted to write another post.

She makes a lot of good points. Not all teachers are like some of those that I know. There are some of my friends and family that are excellent teachers. They teach, it's something that they are passionate about and they shine, as do their students. They are often the "favorite teacher" in many children's lives. Those are the teachers that make me proud.

Then there are the others. The ones that think because they are a teacher that they should be entitled to "better" benefits. There are a couple of this type in my family. They always complain about how bad teachers have it and about how more should be done for teachers. I know here, that there are tons of places that give discounts and fringe benefits to teachers. Yet, law enforcement or members of our military don't get the same treatment. I would think that the people who risk their lives for us each day deserve those benefits more than anyone else. I don't think it's write for society to play favorites in order to drum up business. If your going to give the teachers a discount, then just knock the price down for everyone. Am I jealous? Nope. I dislike any person or group that thinks that they should get something special or that they are entitled just because they are a cop, or a teacher, or a rocket scientist.

These are the teachers that only became teachers so that they could still have summer's off. Here, the average teacher makes $35,000+ per year. While, it's not a ton of money, it is a decent salary. Slightly doubled from that of minimum wage. Teachers get excellent retirement packages, but unfortunately thanks to the economy, those aren't doing as well as they have in years past.

As far as benefits, yes, heath care is expensive, and yes, insurance companies have raised their rates and they have reduced the amount that they pay out in response to laws and other needs. I understand that. My husband's insurance went up as well.  But in the original posts, I didn't just mean health benefits, what about the discounts that they are offered? And I'm not just talking locally, without naming names there are nationwide chains that are located here that give discounts to teachers, as well as local businesses. Does the guy that is working in the back of my office right now get those benefits, those perks? Nope. But he still has a college degree, and his job is more physically demanding.

Yes, teachers often work at home. So do I. So does my husband. He still has to answer his cell phone when it rings even if he isn't in the office, and if there is a problem, then he must fix it. Even if he is on "my time". His boss called last night and needed some information about some stores that were being remodeled. John had to stop eating dinner to go get on his computer and get the information off. It couldn't wait until today. That isn't an usual occurrence. He spent 20 minutes gathering information for his boss, on his own time, not company time. Yet, he can't go to a local office supply store and buy his office supplies at a discount and the teacher can? There are tons of people who go home and work. It's not exclusive to teachers. I had a teacher in high school that never took papers to grade home. She did it all at school. She went to school at 7:30 and she went home at 5. But that was "her" time as she put it on the first day of class. She was probably the most influential teacher I ever had, and my favorite from the time I hit 6th grade. Part of it is a choice. My mother-in-law admits to goofing around on the internet instead of grading papers, and then she has to take them home and do it. Whose fault is that?

No, I have nothing against teachers. The ones that do their job and teach and realize the power that they have to shape lives, actually have my utmost respect. I can't imagine standing in front of a room full of kids and all that comes with dealing with children. I have no desire whatsoever to teach. I don't have the patience, and the OCD in me likes things simple and neat. I explain and you get it. No other explanations necessary. I don't work that way.

Our Senators, representatives, and even our presidents have totally screwed up our education system. But we put them in that office, and often they aren't voted out, so realistically those who go and vote, and those who sit at home and don't vote have put them in office. The mistake was ours to make, and now it's ours to fix.

Do I know the absolute truth of how it works? No, because I'm not a teacher, just like you won't know how debits and credits work if you aren't an accountant.

So yes, some of my opinions could be misinformed. But then again, I was raised by people who don't believe in credit cards, and who don't believe in buying something that you can't afford and for saving for a rainy day. I was raised by people who didn't spend more than they made, and by people who believed that hard work would get you anywhere. Could I live on a teacher's salary? Absolutely. It's about $13,000 more than I make in a year. Could I have afford a $700 house payment and a $400 car payment? Nope. Ok, yeah, I could, but I wouldn't. We would find a cheap 1 bedroom apartment, and a car with a much cheaper payment. Would we be happy? Probably so.

I might not be a teacher, but I've learned that money doesn't buy happiness. You could make a million dollars a day, and be completely miserable. Are there teachers out there who love their job, and do it because of a passion? Absolutely. Those teachers - they are rare. And those teachers are worth their weight in gold. Those who don't have that passion to teach are the ones that make the rest look bad. Which can be said about any profession.

So I would like to offer my apologies, because yes, I did do some stereotyping in that first post. There are teachers out there who have a passion and who do an amazing job, and they go above and beyond what they have to do. They have my utmost respect. And to the teachers out there that have lost that passion - find something else to do, or find the joy in teaching again, because you have the ability to change someone else's life with what you do. Use that power wisely.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Young VS. Old

I have always heard about generational gaps and I have seen them repeatedly. Yet here lately, it seems like I am noticing it more. I don't know if it is because I am learning so much at Tech that doesn't have to do with my degree or I'm just paying more attention.

Recently the city required that the company that I work for get a Storm Water Permit. My boss complained that it was the government holding its hand out and looking to extract more money from small businesses. I saw it as trying to get businesses to think more about their environmental impact. Is it a pain? Yes. Is it good business practice to be "green"? Yes. Does my 72 year old boss see it that way? No. Our perspectives are very different. Yes, the need for the permit came at a bad time for the business, we are trying to recover from slow times and it's hard. We often barely make payroll, simply because we are trying to stretch every dollar that we have. So yes, I understand his desire to not spend the money.

After taking the Environmental Science class last semester I learned a lot of information. It was educational and it made me think about recycling and going green in a whole new level. In fact, if my husband wouldn't look at me like I was crazy, there would be a ton of changes in our own home. That class was eye opening. My boss, being of a different generation sees things differently. He hasn't taken the class, and once again, he would argue that it was all propaganda from the government so that THEY could have more than he does.

Yet, talk to a 15 year old, and this is something that they have heard in school for a while now. They are used to the recycling bins at school. They see it as protecting the environment and those cute little animals, not that the big, bad government is trying to steal money from them.

Makes me wonder, if everyone would stop trying to be the "right" one, how much could we learn if we stuck 30 year olds in the same room with 70 year olds? The older group has seen more, and had more life experiences to help with not repeating mistakes, the 30 year olds have the ambition and the drive to push through and see changes happen. In a perfect world, it's the perfect solution. In reality, it will never happen.

My boss has the mentality that everything will always be around, that global warming isn't real and that it would take a huge disaster, like a meteor to screw things up. He doesn't realize that permit, and the fee spent could save someones job. It could save a lake. It could help find an alternative to cleaning water for drinking. Is it an age thing? Or is it an education thing? Is it something that he could overcome, or is he too stubborn to change his way of thinking at this point? Are you?

Wednesday, August 10, 2011


Today, because I have more guts than sense, I'm opening a whole new can of worms on my blog. If you are a teacher, or married to a teacher, or know a teacher, then you are probably going to be really, really pissed at me after reading this. I'm sorry in advance.

I realize that the educational system in this country is lacking. It's all about teaching the students how to pass the standardized tests so that the school districts get the money. They teach the kids how to pass the TAKS test. Or whatever the abbreviations are this year. Realistically, because they aren't actually allowed to "teach" they are glorified babysitters. Ouch. Sting much? If I were to get pregnant, I would homeschool my children. Period. They have to know the material for the tests, but they also still get a quality education. They would get to learn about things that schools aren't teaching anymore because of their political correctness factor.

I hate that teachers are losing their jobs. But then again, I hate it when Engineers, Doctors, Lawyers, Grocery Sackers, pool boy's, and ear wax remover's lose their job too. It's hard, no matter what field or area you work it. But the question remains...why should teachers be immune? Why shouldn't they have the same worries as everyone else? Why should they have job security when the rest of the country doesn't? Why do they get better benefits? Better retirement? Why shouldn't an engineer or a doctor get the same benefits? Why are teachers "better" than everyone else?

They aren't. Pure and simple. Yes, the job they do is tough. Yes, they have 30 kids that they have to corral and try to teach them. I agree that their job is hard, but so is a rocket scientists' job. I hate that schools are having their budgets cut and that they are losing money, that programs will be cut, that jobs will be lost. I hate that for anyone, teacher or not.

We put such a high value on education, yet we forget to teach. History is important so that we don't repeat the same mistakes. By teaching the kids how to pass the tests so that their district gets the most money, what are we really teaching our kids?

How to milk the system? How to get the most reward for the least amount of effort?

It's sad that teachers have the greatest opportunity to shape our children, yet they have the least amount of control to do it. They have someone standing over their shoulder telling them that the holocaust wasn't important, so they share that message with our kids. Which is to bad, we need to learn from the mistakes of the past to avoid making those same mistakes in the future.

~A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops. ~Henry Adams

~The best teachers teach from the heart, not from the book. ~Author Unknown

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

A Dose of Perspective

The news here has been flooded with talks and videos and pictures of the Navy Seals that were killed in Afghanistan over the weekend.

I'm not big on the political scene. I think that there is a ton of room for improvement in all areas of our government. It shouldn't just be about getting the votes, it should be about doing what's right, morally and ethically for our country. But that's a whole 'nother can of worms.

Yet today, I just can't imagine how the hole that those 30 lives have left, not only to their families, but to our country. To a certain extent I think that we have forgotten the devastation that our country felt on September 11th. I think that we have forgotten the men and women who put their names, and let's face it, often their lives on the line so that you can stand in line at Starbucks instead of having a drill Sargent yell at you. They gave their life so that you might have that privilege. Makes that $4 cup of coffee suddenly a whole lot more expensive.

The youngest cousin of John's, due to some road blocks had to forgo his plans of becoming a police officer. He had decided that he was going to join the Navy and train to become a seal. Frankly, I was terrified. Their job is dangerous. Very dangerous. They have tons of training to prepare them, but it's still scary to the family waiting at home for them. So when he decided to join the coast guard, because as he put it "God didn't make me to kill people, but to save them". Knowing Matt the way that I do, I agree completely. I couldn't imagine him taking another person's life, no matter what the situation was.

So today, instead of complaining about how hot it is, and how my air conditioner struggles to keep up, how tired I am, how big my problems are. I'm going to think of those 30 Americans. I'm going to think of their families as they try to put their lives back together. I'm going to think of the tables that will have an empty chair at dinner. I'm going to think about the families who have lost a son, a father, a husband, a friend, and I'm going to be thankful that they are so very willing to step up and give the ultimate sacrifice so that my life can be what it is today.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Garage Sale 2011

Well, since there is a post here, it's quite obvious that the garage sale attempt didn't kill me.

But it was touch and go there for a while.

Actually, I really can't complain. We did go. We got rid of quite a bit of stuff. We still had quite a bit of stuff leftover, the majority of which we packed up and took to Goodwill. Some of the more pricey items, we are taking to my moms and going to attempt to get rid of it at her garage sale in 2 weeks. I'm not looking forward to that little adventure. But the goodness is that there isn't much. The bad news is that she will be out of town until the 19th or 20th and won't have it ready to go and to someone with a Type A personality like me, it will be the biggest nightmare. But, I promise to try to not choke her. I just keep repeating "I won't like prison." Over and over and over again.

I did sunburn though. But only on my arms. My legs won't hold color of any kind. Period. Get up, go to the bathroom and look at your butt. See the lighter color. Multiply that by 1 million, and that's how white the rest of my body is. My arms have a nice little tan going. Everything else. Not so much. It makes me crazy.

We are going to Abilene this weekend to see my nephew and niece before school starts. Is it awful that I'm not looking forward to going? When we saw the kids in January their behavior was horrific. They were awful to me and John. My niece was pissed because my parents, her Nana and Bop-pop weren't coming, so she took the PISS ON YOU attitude. It makes it so hard to want to spend time with her. When all I can think about it how mean she is. She will be 11 on the 16th.

You guys don't have too much fun today, it is Monday after all.

Friday, August 5, 2011

5 Question Friday

This is one of those weird Friday's when I wish it was Monday already. I'm having a garage sale tomorrow, and I'm so not looking forward to that. I have screwed around all week and haven't gotten things ready and I finally started on it last night, and well, let's just say it's going to be a long night and probably early morning getting everything ready. I already feel a nap coming on.

But if your in Lubbock, come see me. Just look for the ad on craigslist or in the AJ that has Precious Moments in it. There are too many weirdos in internet land for me to give you my exact address. Be a stalker, look it up. Tell your boss your doing "research".

Wish me luck. If I don't post Monday, I might not have survived the weekend.

1. Do you have siblings and are you close with them?

I have a step sister and no, we aren't close. We are totally different and have totally different views on everything. We don't always get along, but we try.

It would be nice to have a better relationship with her, but we are both so different that it couldn't really work out. I haven't talked to her or heard from her since January. Ouch.

2. Would you rather be slightly UNDER weight or slightly OVER weight?

Under. Simply because it's so much easier to gain weight than it is to lose weight.

Plus it's a vanity thing, people don't make fun of you for being underweight. they worry about whether or not you have been sick, about whether or not you have something wrong with you. When your over weight people assume that your lazy, that you eat donuts and double cheeseburgers by the case. They don't think that there might be some possibility that you have something wrong with your body too.

3. What's your favorite State Fair food to splurge on?

Cotton Candy. I realize that technically it isn't food, but I buy bags of the stuff when we go to the fair. Bags. Then I ration. Then I usually end up throwing a bag away because it shrinks down into a hard ball of sugar before I eat it because I was rationing.

We usually try to have a turkey leg, cheese on a stick, and a wonder bar. Preferably a cheesecake wonderbar. Because let's face it, cheesecake dunked in chocolate, then rolled in nuts, is just full of awesome.
4. What are your thoughts on your kid(s) going to school in a few weeks?

Wait, listen. Listen very, very carefully. Do you hear that? It's the angels singing a Hallelujah chorus and parents jumping around in joy. And it's me, bored at work, with my brain fried rejoicing that in a mere 19 days I will no longer be bored at work. I will be back to school. How freaking awesome is that?

I'm such a nerd. But I'm cute. So that balances things out.
5. Pool or Ocean?

Uh...both. But I only like to look at the ocean and experience the beach. I don't swim in it. Period. When I can't see the bottom, of the ocean that's where I stop walking in. There are things that swim in the ocean with large, sharp teeth that look at me and think..."Hmmmm, snack time!" I don't want to know if the pretty little fishy, that I.can't.see. is looking at my feet thinking, "I wonder if she is sweet, or if she is tough, she looks tender, with all that fat. Let's nibble on a toe and find out." No thank you.

Pools. I love to swim. I could live in a pool. You know, if it had a restaurant, potty, bed and office. There aren't creatures in there that eat me and see me as a potential snack. Although, thanks to a few bad sunburns over the years, and my aversion to 100+ degree weather. I like indoor pools so much better than outdoor pools.

So when I win the lottery, I will just build me a house on the beach with an indoor pool, so I can have the best of both worlds.

Have a Fun weekend! Have a garage sale in my honor. I'll send you my address so you know where to send the proceeds.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Hacked by a Hacker

Wow, what was up with that post yesterday? Whiny? Grumpy? Feeling sorry for ourselves?

I'm going to blame it on a hacker. Yep, that's it, I was invaded. By the body snatchers. And they typed that up and posted it without my consent. Exactly.

That's my story. And you don't have proof that it wasn't me.

Here is a bulleted list of complaints. Just so I can get it all out of my the hacker's system.

- Can believe that it's August? I haven't even started my Christmas shopping yet. I have like 4 presents taken care of. Period. And I start back to school 3 weeks from today. Everyone may get gift cards this year, and chocolate.

- I know I have unpacked my back pack. I have seen my back pack. But I don't know where I have put it. I'm starting to wonder if I really unpacked it. Or if I am crazy. Or both.

- I'm having a garage sale this weekend. I think I was delusional when I decided that. Good news is, my garage will be empty after Saturday. So if your in Lubbock look for the garage sale on 96th Street on craigslist and in the paper and come see me.

- I'm pimping out my Scentsy business on Saturday too. All of the other consultants do it when they have a garage sale. I have lots of plans for the old books that I have that won't be any good the end of the month too. I'm going to try to pick me up some new customers and earn enough to hopefully pay for my tuition for summer school next year.

- Who am I kidding? I may need the money to pay my tuition next month. All the budget cuts have me concerned about my student loans. I'm trying not to worry, and just have faith that things will all work out. But the worry wart in me, isn't buying it.

- Grocery shopping. It's expensive and I hate it. Can't United set up online shopping and delivery?

- Ug. I have seen a number on the scale this week that I don't ever want to see again. Been trying harder to watch what I eat without watching hard core yet. Mostly because I need to set up some plans, but this fat has got to go. It's either me or it.

- We are going to Abilene to see my niece and nephew next weekend with my parents. The kids start school soon, and because of divorce proceedings, still can't leave the county. Because of the way that my niece behaved when we saw them in January I'm not looking forward to it as much as I would like to.

- I told family about this blog. I'm not sure if I should regret that yet or not. I haven't sent her the address, I'm working up to that.

- To not have completely finished unpacking yet. We moved June 17th. Past moves have never taken this long to unpack. I'm tired of it. I'm also tired of the mess. I'm running out of time to get it all done before I start back to school. After the garage sale, we are packing everything up that's left (which is hopefully nothing) and taking it all to goodwill. Then the rest of the weekend will be spent cleaning up the garage and finishing unpacking.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Evil, Horrible Daughter - in - law

I had hoped that time would work. I had hoped that Papa's drawn out illness would work. I had hoped.

But, I had a feeling that it wouldn't. I had a feeling that things would go back to the same, once my mother-in-law, the matriarch of that particular family had returned. Unfortunately I was right.

I'm back to being evil and avoided. Sometimes I really don't understand family. I don't understand how they can think that they can push me away and have their son in their life too. It hurts him just as much, if not more than it does me. My parents haven't always loved John and the choices that he has made, but they have respected them, and they have kept their mouth shut, and they have at least treated him with some form of courtesy, some form of decency.

I can't make them love me, I can't make them like me. But I would hope that they were all raised to at least be nice to me. Instead, when I speak, what I say is glossed over. Like I never said it. They probably would have preferred that I said nothing at Papa's memorial. Instead of reading this. They probably wish I hadn't shown up.

I can speculate for days.

But instead of a turning point in a relationship. I learned that today, my mother-in-law buys her Scentsy from someone else. Simply for the fact that she doesn't have to see me. I'm not surprised, I'm not even that hurt by it anymore (contrary to the ranting I have been doing). What bothers me the most is that everyone else follows suit. If my mother in law doesn't approve, then John's brother and sister can't either.  They are ruining their relationship with their son, and they don't even see it. That's what bothers me.

Papa's death has left regrets with many. I don't want them to wake up in a few years and regret the choices that they have made. I don't want them to keep pushing him away. He too, has realized that things are back to "normal". No more texts, no more calls, no more.

One day, there will be no more. Now, that's a text message I would love to send, broadcast to a family. They won't live forever, their won't be a good time to "fix" their relationship. We won't live forever either.

Now, the only thing left to do is wonder. What happens from here?

Monday, August 1, 2011

Who You Aren't

It's not who you are that holds you's who you think you aren't. ~Unknown

The last few weeks have been draining, both physically as well as mentally. It's hard watching someone you love suffer, and die. I wouldn't with that experience on anyone, but at the same time, I think it's something that every human should witness, simply because it gives you a big dose of humility.

I've spent the better part of the last month feeling incredibly sorry for myself. With all the drama with my in-laws and my summer slowing slipping away, and some of the plans I had hoped to accomplish with it, it's been a hard few months around here. Self doubt has definitely taken over my life.

Friday on Facebook, one of my contacts had posted the above quote, and it got the wheels turning. There may or may not have been grease involved, since it's been a while since those wheels were turning.

It's not who I am. Why? Because, amazingly so, I'm awesome. I'm sweet, I'm kind, according to the family at the memorial service, I'm an amazing writer. John's cousins poured on the praise, even my father-in-law commented, so obviously, I can, on occasion, write. It's not who I am that holds me back. It's not who I am that things I'm too fat, too stupid, too slow, too old, not worthy, not beautiful, not a good writer. It's the person I think I'm not.

That person, is a real pain in the neck. She thinks all those things. She thinks that I have nothing to offer, she thinks that I can't. When in fact, I can. She thinks that I'm not worthy of praise, and sometimes even love. She thinks that I'm not, and everyone else is.

I'm starting to think that she needs a muzzle. Preferably in pink.

I can. I am. I will. I have.

I can do whatever I want, as long as I put in the effort and the work. I am worthy. Of love, of understanding, of kindness, of happiness. I will go where I want to and do what I want in my life, so long as I work towards it. I have a great family, wonderful friends, and my husband's extended family, with cousins (who let me spoil their children), and aunts and uncles, and a grandfather. Yes, it still hurts that they don't love me. It still hurts that they don't bother to get to know me, but I can't make them. I can only be me, and let them find out for themselves that they have been missing.

That part that isn't me, well she's still me too. She's the one who sometimes pushes me into working harder. She's the one with incredible strength, that let's me borrow some of hers, when I think I can't go on. She's the one who pushes me to do things that terrify me. That person that I'm not, she is part of me too, I just don't listen to her much. Sometimes, she thinks that I'm the one that needs the muzzle. And duct tape. She's the one who tells me I can, when I think I can't. She's the one who pushes me to do better, to be better. She's the one who tells me that I am (fill in the blank).

Most of the time, she could use a muzzle. But don't tell her I said that.


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