Wednesday, December 13, 2006
1) Carmex for my chapped lips. (Yes, they really are chapped right now.)
2) My dryer's lint screen, which recently brought in solid cat hair.
3) Lowe's Home Improvement, which sells my favorite fireplace logs in bulk. (They burn just fine when the damper is open.)
4) My dishwasher (which could make the difference between roaches or no roaches -- trust me on this one).
5) A paycheck with which I can actually keep a pantry stocked with real food -- namely, Cheetos and canned pineapple. (Yummy).
6) My patio -- even though I suspect that it may be home to some wasps or yellow jackets (unless I call maintenance soon...).
7) The privilege of watching my cat try to catch falling snowflakes through the window.
8) Working a night job, where the traffic driving to work isn't usually too bad ... and where going to bed at 1:30 in the morning is considered really, really early. (Really.)
9) Working in a big city, where if you fall asleep at the green light, some dude will promptly honk and yell out the window to alert you.
10) Living in the suburbs, where you can enjoy a sturdy October moon, in December, gently shrouded in clouds above the city's din.
Thursday, November 30, 2006
Since moving to Irving (from West Texas) two months ago, I think I have FINALLY gotten over my culture shock. There is a TON of diversity out here, which can be good and bad, but I think I'm mostly adjusted. Here are some noteable events you might enjoy hearing about.
1) About a month ago, I was an hour and fifteen minutes late for work one day because I was stuck in some serious traffic. I meant to look for the news article online, but from what I understand, near Texas Stadium (where there are 3 main roads that converge), a large truck carrying oilfield equipment misjudged the height of an upcoming bridge and hit it. I think it must have messed up the roads somehow, because they've still got one lane on two different highways closed for construction. I had a feeling when I saw 3 helicopters and one news photographer walking down the road that something was up...
2) About a couple of weeks ago while I was testing out my new fireplace, I ended up smoking up my whole apartment. I THOUGHT the damper was open, honest. But apparently it was only open a crack. My smoke alarm went off and wouldn't stop, so I called the emergency maintenance people from my apartment since it was after hours. 45 minutes later (wow, fast turnaround time for an emergency), the maintenance guy came and was very nice. He showed me how to unhook the smoke alarm if it were to ever happen again, and he showed me how to REALLY open the damper. (I felt a lot better after it took him a while to figure it out himself...)
3) When my parents were over here for Thanksgiving, with their dog, the pooch pooped on my living room carpet ... in front of my dad while he was watching TV. Um, that incident sort of speaks for itself...
4) It's a good thing I tested out my fireplace, because a serious Arctic chill has breezed through the Metroplex, bringing ice, sleet, and snow. I have a cool job where they told us the office was open as usual, but to not come to work if you didn't deem the roads safe. After watching the news where they said there were only 13 major accidents and 17 minor accidents this morning, and realizing that all that water on the road would be frozen when I would have gotten off work tonight, I opted to take a snow day. So here I am -- viola -- with the time to finally sit down and write this. :)
Until next time...
Tuesday, August 22, 2006
2) BRINGING YOUR CHILDREN TO WORK WITH YOU. I can understand if you couldn't find a baby sitter, or if the child is ill. If the kid were to sit quietly and entertain themselves while their parent is working, it is no distraction, no problem at all. (Some of my coolest childhood memories were when my sister and I used to go to work with my hairstylist mom and read or play hangman under the dryers in the beauty salon.) But when the kid is still an infant and crying very loudly while coworkers are oohing and aahing, and those of us innocent bystanders from 50 feet away are trying to work, it can get very annoying. (Especially if the kid is like 14 and decides to practice his drum rhythms on a nearby desk.)
3) PEOPLE WHO EAVESDROP ON CONVERSATIONS, AND INVITE THEMSELVES TO JOIN IN, FROM 50 FEET ACROSS THE ROOM. Self-explanatory.
4) HIGHWAY DRIVERS SITUATED IN THE LEFT LANE, GOING 1 MPH BELOW THE SPEED LIMIT, REFUSING TO SPEED UP. I think public officers would say this could be dangerous. Especially if you're stuck behind the vehicle with a semi on your right and 40 cars behind you. Note: I'm not sure if this is necessarily a problem in large metropolitan areas.
5) ASKING SOMEBODY WHAT THEY'RE READING. I am probably sitting quietly by myself because I want to be by myself. If you don't see me put my book away when you walk into the room, I would prefer to not engage in a conversation at this time.
6) PEOPLE WHO TALK AND TALK AND TALK WITHOUT LETTING YOU GET A WORD IN EDGEWISE. Also self-explanatory. I usually try to head for the nearest exit.
7) PEOPLE WHO TALK TOO LOUDLY. When combined with number 6 above, it can be lethal for your eardrums. Perhaps you grew up on a farm, but you're in the city now. They've invented electronic devices that will let you project your voice to hundreds of people at a time, with minimal voice strain. But I am standing right here.
8) THAT BEARDED OXYCLEAN GUY ON TV. This sort of goes along with number 7. Hey, if I buy just one of your toilet bowl cleaners, would you please stop yelling at me?!??
9) OVER-CRITICISM. I realize that God gave you a brain, and that He gave you the ability to develop opinions. But must you over-develop them, and share them at the drop of a hat as if they were the law? Can you please just say something nice -- about anybody??
10) OVER-LISTICISM. This occurs when one creates list after list about just about every... oh, crap. Perhaps I should stop. Uh, thanks for reading and, um, goodbye for now. :o)
Monday, August 21, 2006
I have not reached the fountain of youth. (Nor do I believe it exists, really...) But I have found a certain non-pecuniary eccentricity that makes life SO much more exciting than it was, say, a year ago at age 29.
For some reason, I finally feel validated as an adult. Not the I'm-going-off-to-college-and-will-only-call-my-parents-when-I-need-money type of adult. Not the I'm-going-to-stay-up-and-hang-with-my-college-friends-even-though-I-have-a-full-time-job-to-wake-up-for-tomorrow-morning type of adult. It's more of the please-stop-treating-me-like-I'm-fresh-out-of-high-school-because-now-I'm-in-my-THIRTIES! type of adult. I must say it's pretty cool. :D
OK, so I'm a little weird. My favorite color is dark blue so just about EVERYTHING I own & wear is that color. I've rediscovered the Carpenters. I would much rather eat my sack lunch in the car than have to endure chatty gossip in the breakroom at work. The highlight of my Saturday morning is monitoring Turner Classic Movies like a hawk to see if I've got their cartoon episode on tape. (Well, OK, so I'm ultra-quirky, too.)
I think one thing that helps this bicentennial baby embrace her thirties is the fact that she still doesn't have any husband or kids to tie her down. I'm still a little bit bummed about that. But I don't know very many moms who can dance a jig with her cat and not feel any shame.
What the heck is it with becoming a mom nowadays, anyway? Several of us single gals get together every once in a while and talk about how weird it is that ALL our friends are getting married and having kids. (Hey, did you catch the irony? a huge chunk of our friends are sitting around discussing our singleness? :">) Friends that we haven't seen in years -- we didn't know they were dating, now suddenly they're married, and now suddenly they've got a cute kid and another one on the way. Whew! Where the heck has time gone??
I don't know about everybody else, but for me it's the full-time job thing. That tends to eat up all my time and make the calendar days float away like rapidly running water. Or maybe it's just that as you get older, you begin to encounter more and more people from your past. You've had more time to accumulate more friends, right?
By the way, I apologize again for taking so long to post something. It must be that pesky 8 to 5 thing... :">
Tuesday, July 18, 2006
A few weeks ago I was getting dressed to go out with my family and I couldn't decide on my jewelry. I rarely get to wear my dressy jewelry and I was torn between two pieces. Then I remembered a set I received for Christmas from one of my students. I fished it out of my bathroom drawer.
I had forgotten that the backing of one of the earrings had broken off the last time I wore it. Since it was set in my mind to wear that particular set, I scurried about the house, looking for super glue. I finally found a tube in the back of one of our numerous junk drawers.
The cap was missing, so once I opened the darn thing there would be no way to store it. What the heck! That's what the dollar store is for. I grabbed a pen with a sharp point and carefully pricked an opening into the top of the tube.
Although done carefully enough, there was too much pressure in the tube and super glue came shooting out! Literally. Not only did it get all over my hands, but a huge blob shot straight into my eye! I panicked for a split second and tried not to blink. I ran to the bathroom to take out my contact. Right smack in the middle of it was a blob of glue that had already dried.
That was a close one. Imagine what would have happened if my contact wasn't in. If the glue landed directly on my eye. Or if I had blinked and my eyelids permanently stuck together! Okay, that may be a bit extreme, but given the right amount of glue combined with prolonged blinking time and ya never know.
So, two weeks later I'm fine, my eye's fine and my superglue covered hands are fine. Only a small blob of glue on my left ring finger fingernail is left as a reminder of that perilous night. Oh, and thankfully my contacts are disposable, so I was able to pop a new one in and head off to dinner with the fam. Unfortunately, after all the drama, the glue didn't fix my earring and I had to go with my alternate choice.
Tuesday, July 11, 2006
1. A book that made you cry
Most recently: The Chosen by Chaim Potok -- when Danny and his dad FINALLY talk
2. A book that scared you
Dunno . . . I don't scare easily, so I can't recall any book ever scaring me . . .
3. A book that made you laugh
Bridget Jones's Diary by Helen Fielding
4. A book that disgusted you
The Atomic Bomb: Voices from Hiroshima and Nagasaki by Kyoto Selden (Editor) I had to read it for a history class my last semester of college. I couldn't finish it; it left me with some horrible mental pictures that still plague me if I think about it. Although, maybe that's the point . . .
5. A book you loved in elementary school
Sideways Stories from Wayside School and Wayside School is Falling Down by Louis Sachar (his book Holes is awesome, btw. I just don't think it was out when I was in elementary; I didn't know anything about it until '04.)
6. A book you loved in middle school
I didn't have a particular favorite book in middle school, but I read a lot of Christopher Pike's horror books one particular year. My sister-in-law was astonished when I told her that while we were at Half Price Books last month. She couldn't believe my parents let me read that. I don't think they knew about it.
7. A book you loved in high school
The Tombs of Atuan by Ursula K. Le Guin. After reading it for 9th grade English class, I went out and bought all the books in the series
8. A book you loved in college
The Brother's Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoevsky
9. A book that challenged your identity or your faith
Is it bad that I have to think about this one???
10. A series that you love
The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis
11. Your favorite horror book
The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde
12. Your favorite science-fiction book
Never liked science fiction, but I'll try to read anything that's recommended.
13. Your favorite fantasy book
Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings, but I must give an honorable mention to Robert Jordan's The Wheel of Time series.
14. Your favorite mystery book
Hmm . . . can't think of one off the top of my head . . . I've always had a fondness for Sherlock Holmes, though.
15. Your favorite biography
Evidence Not Seen by Darlene Deibler Rose - however, this is more of an autobiography.
16. Your favorite coming-of-age book
Tess of the D'Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy, if that counts. "Coming-of-age" sounds so nebulous to me.
17. Your favorite book not on this list
Any of Jane Austen's novels
*If any of you Thinklings happen to read this, I apologize for not trackbacking . . . nearly two years of semi-blogging and I still can't figure out how to do it.
Monday, July 03, 2006
By the way -- a belated Happy Birthday to Debbie!! Hope you had a good one, Dude!! :D
Saturday, May 20, 2006
I have exactly four days of work left. Actually, I have four days left of working with the kids. I still have to "work" for another week and a half after that, but the hard part will all be over. And not a minute too soon, I'm exhausted; it's been a long year.
I have mixed feelings about this school year ending. I'll be ecstatic when this season is over. Heck, my coworker and I have been counting down the days for over a month now! It will be wonderful to be in a less stressful and threatening work environment ((I write that in faith; I have yet to find a new job...ok, ok, i have yet to seriously search for a new job...I'm just so darn tired!)). It will also be wonderful to love kids again and not hate myself for yelling at large groups of three- and four-year-olds. I know my next teaching position may also be challenging, but if I could survive this school year, I could survive anything. I just need to get out of this current situation ASAP.
Despite how excited I am for this to be over and done with, how happy I will be to be away from all the crying children and my psychotic boss, I'm starting to realize I will miss my kids. At least some of them. I think. And I'll also miss my coworkers. At least three of them.
Last week was teacher's appreciation week and I was showered with gifts from my kids. Mostly fruit baskets (at least 6 of them!) and flowers. I felt so loved! A card with one of the baskets said: "I love you . . . because you have been a great, sweet and wonderful teacher throughout my first school year. I'm just beginning my life and I have learned a lot from you. Although I won't see you in a couple of weeks; I will always remember you as my sweet, sweet teacher. I love you forever . . . . Nathalie"
How precious is that?! I even got a little misty-eyed. Sure, her mom wrote the whole thing, but Nathalie at least wrote her own name at the bottom. I taught her that!!!
But as I've began packing up my classroom, I can't help but remember all the vision I had coming into the school year. I somehow lost most, if not all, of that. And that grieves me. I feel as though I failed my students in a way. I allowed crappy and incompetent administration deter me from my goals this first year of real teaching. At the same time, I know I impacted my students; otherwise, they wouldn't love me so much. I just pray they remember the love and fun songs, not the shouting and impatience that too easily surfaces. Now I know how to pray over the summer in preparation for next year. You can pray that I will diligently seek the Lord and store up for the upcoming year. And while you're at it, please pray that I find a new job . . .
Friday, April 14, 2006
OK, here are some things that have been rolling around in my brain for a while -- hopefully they've solidified to something somewhat intelligible. (I hope that's a word... well, it is now. :))
This is old news, but what the heck was the deal with all those mining accidents that were happening a couple of months ago?!??? Was the devil just taking aim at a particular industry & destroying some innocent lives, or are there just some primitive ideas that need to be conquered here?? In case it's the latter, I humbly submit the following.
(Well, OK. I idealistically submit the following.)
Why do we need human beings stuck in coal mines every day? I was telling someone the other day that maybe in certain parts of the country it's a cultural thing. (Here in West Texas, working out on the oil fields can be pretty risky, but we do it anyway.) But still I'm sure they're down in the mines risking their lungs & their lives so they can earn money & support their families with an honest living.
And (I know I keep harping on this) why the heck do we keep paying government money for that antiquated space shuttle program? All that rocket science just so we can prove YET again, mission after mission, that there AIN'T no life on other planets, no matter how you spin it??? There is some serious brainpower, though, on those projects.
So why not combine the two efforts and design robots or something to do the mining for us? No lives risked necessarily, just all the dirty work done by remote control. And maybe the coal miners could be trained instead to do the operation and tech support, etc. I personally would MUCH rather spend my tax dollars supporting a state-of-the-art safety technology for coal miners rather than ANOTHER rinky-dinky ol' shuttle mission. We've been to the moon. We've got the solar system mapped out. Can't we PLEASE just save a few lives with our brainpower and tax dollars???
If only we weren't so wishy-washy.
Sunday, March 19, 2006
Four weeks until our next day off; six weeks after that before school is over . . . . I hope I make it . . .
This first year of teaching has been interesting, to say the least. I was forced to brush up on my Spanish. I learned how to manage a class of 22 3-year-olds. I learned how to manage 21 of them while helping the 22nd get cleaned up after throwing up all over the place. I learned how to help a 3-year-old get cleaned up after throwing up all over the place without gagging and throwing up myself. These are all lessons that will get me far in life, I'm sure.
I've discovered that being a grown-up can be over-rated sometimes. My biggest issue is with money. I hate it! We work our butts off to earn it and then we have to turn around and give it away and we're left with hardly anything. I mean, I make upwards of $30000, but after paying for my certification program, school loans, credit cards, car, school loans, cell phone, insurance, etc., I'm lucky if I have $200 a month left for food, gas, and other necessities. Not only does college prepare you for the field of work you plan to go into, it also teaches you how to stretch a dollar and live off of Ramen Noodles and Totino's Pizza (yeah, my trainer at the gym loves that diet). Thankfully, my certification program will be paid off in June and I can start saving more for England. I should also have my credit cards paid off in a year. It's the school loans that are killing me. Oi!
With trying to finish the school year strong, searching for a new and better job for next year, learning how to juggle grown-up finances, and laying the ground work for me to move to England next year, I'm learning how to trust Jesus more. Trying to learn how to trust Jesus more. Any suggestions???
Monday, March 13, 2006
. . . you buy a new car and your rational for weaving in and out of traffic shifts from "my car's big, old, paid off, and has a few dents...what's the deal if I get another dent?" TO "my car's small, fast, and I have great insurance...besides, that BMW driver doesn't want his car dented..."
. . . you don't even bother to slow down in a construction zone; in fact, you get ticked off when the car in front of you slows down!
. . . you speed up to block in the driver that impatiently tried to pass you.
. . . you speed up to prevent the driver that was in front of you, that impatiently tried to pass the driver in front of her, from getting her spot back.
. . . honking your horn becomes instinctual and part of your daily commute.
Saturday, February 18, 2006
I say it's about durn time we perpetual singles went against the grain. No more getting sick when you pass those chocolate-heart displays at the supermarket. No more wanting to strangle the deliveryboy when he brings a giant vase of flowers for somebody ELSE. No more being the victim!! Why should the couples have all the fun???
My single friend, following are some tips I humbly submit to you. (Disclaimer: I am kidding, of course. If you actually try any of these ideas, I ain't gonna be held responsible...)
LIVING WITH BLACK TUESDAY
1. After the deliveryboy drops off those giant flowers at somebody's desk at work, have your lasso ready and rope the dude. Pin him down and demand to know where YOUR flowers are. (Just make sure your boss isn't watching...)
2. If the deliveryboy is really cute, untie him and invite him to coffee.
3. If you're no good at roping, try firing missiles. Grab some chocolate hearts... aim... and FIRE. The deliveryboy has been conquered.
4. If that doesn't work, drive to the flower shop and let the air out of the deliveryboy's tires. If you can't get flowers, NO ONE can...
5. Distribute antacid tablets at work. Surely everyone will need help digesting all that chocolate.
ALTERNATIVES TO BLACK TUESDAY
1. Move to California, open a tire shop, and celebrate Valley Tires Day.
2. Distribute half-eaten watermelons at work, in celebration of Melon-Rinds Day.
3. Tie orange peels around your neck, in celebration of Smellin-Rinds Day.
4. Go to the park. Celebrate Flying-Kites Day.
5. Go to the DPS and pay any outstanding tickets. No sense in celebrating Dodging-Fines Day.
Thursday, February 16, 2006
Tons of chocolate.
I had a great v-day, actually. Here are the highlights:
*At work I was in charge of watching two classes, which equals approximately 40 kids. You're right, having to coordinate 40+ kids in storing backpacks, jackets and lunches, as well as bathroom time wasn't so great. But sitting and watching movies for over 3 hours was nice.
*I had about 18 valentines this year ((( I have 22 kids, but one was absent and a few were cheap . . . ;o) ))). I got a lot of the usual cheesy dollar store valentines glassware, a few cutesy small stuffed animals, two very nice vanilla candles, a McDonald's giftcard, two roses (one real, one fake), and TONS of chocolate. One girl gave me a box of Ferrero Rocher chocolates. Mmm.....And my dad gave me half a one pound box of Godiva chocolates*. Double mmm......
*I spent the evening watching Bridget Jones's Diary, drinking wine, and attempting to eat half a pound of assorted chocolates. But I was defeated; I gave up after about 6 pieces. *sigh* Thanks to the wine I had a great night's sleep, though. And my trainer helped me work off most of the extra calories Wednesday evening
That was basically my v-day. It may sound dull to some of you wild and crazy folks, but I enjoyed myself. It's great to be at a place of peace and contentment in my singleness. But I'll save that topic for another day.
*Dad said Mom and I have to share the box of chocolates. Figures.
Monday, February 13, 2006
I had hoped to post more witty and clever SAD posts to match last years,' but life has not afforded the time. So, I leave you with a repost from last year(with a few minor adjustments):
Keys to surviving SAD...
Are you a single woman who has found yourself alone on Valentine's Day? Need help? Look no further!
Here's what you need:
*an empty house/apartment/room with a vcr/dvd player
*an exercise video/DVD
*2-5 bags of chocolates, fruit chews, Twizzlers, or sweets of your choice
*favorite pet or stuffed animals
*two movies - one romantic comedy (such as Return to Me, Sleepless in Seattle, Love Actually, etc) and one girl-power movie (like Bridget Jones' Diary, Legally
Blonde, Supergirl, etc)
*a box of Kleenex
Here's what you do:
1. It's Valentine's Day, but for you it's become Single Awareness Day as you find yourself alone and dateless. First, embrace it!
2. Enter your house/apartment/room. Lock the doors, close the curtains, and silence the cell phone (it's better to let your parents' leave a message than to have to dodge their incessant questioning on yet another dateless v-day).
3. Insert the sappy movie into the vcr/dvd player.
4. While viewing the film, munch on the 1-2 bags of sweets.
5. Tears may begin to flow as feelings of loneliness and depression overwhelm you, so cuddle with your pet/stuffed animals for comfort (but don't squeeze Fluffy so hard that his eyes pop 0ut) and use generous amounts of Kleenex to remove all unnecessary traces of tears and snot.
6. After two hours of this, you'll need a lift - insert the girl-power movie into the vcr/dvd player.
7. As you watch the power-flick, soak up the positive energy from the strong, independent women. ((Or at least picture Supergirl punching the lights out of that gorgeous guy who will never ask you out.))
8. Eat another bag or two of sweets. You're da woman! Be confident and comfortable with who you are! Love the curves you have developed over the years! You don't need a man to boost your self-worth -- heck no!
9. As you come down from your sugar high, depression may begin to fall again, especially when the movie comes to an end and you see Bridget happily hook up with Mr. Darcy and Elle with Everett. Resist it! Stop the movie if you must!
10. Insert the exercise video to boost endorphins and in an effort to burn a hundredth of the thousands of calories you've ingested throughout the evening.
11. Halfway through the exercise video you may begin to feel light-headed or have trouble breathing; perhaps there's a pain in your side and a burning in your lungs, not to mention the world's worst stomachache.
12. Crawl into the nearest bed or couch, or just collapse on the floor if you could go no farther; cuddle with your pet/stuffed animals (again, don't squeeze too hard), and open your bible to Isaiah 58 -- it's time to start fasting!
You will soon realize we need God's help to become the inwardly strong and confident women we were created to be . . . or at least, hopefully, you'll have this revelation before you pass out due to over-exertion following the excessive sugar intake; in other words, before you slip into a sugar coma.
"Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised."
Wednesday, February 08, 2006
Sorry it's been so long since I've contributed. Things have been hectic, especially around the holidays. Recently I've been getting over a stomach bug.
But in between all the busy spots, I've seemed to develop more opinionated, er, opinions. So hopefully they'll materialize into blog entries soon. :) Also hopefully, Black Tuesday is just around the corner... Perhaps I'll post something holiday appropriate. (Or holiday rebellious? therapeutic? sticking-out-your-tongue-at-and-going-pppppffft!!?? We shall see.)
See you then!
Sunday, January 15, 2006
Thursday, January 05, 2006
Sunday, January 01, 2006
May you enjoy the treasures and blessings contained in this new year as Abby enjoyed devouring her chocolate chip cookie:
And may you find joy and take pride in your work during this new year as Nathan did while helping bake our cookies:
God bless you and keep you during 2006.