Rants (and two little raves)

Today was a bad day. Well, not so much bad as absolutely frustrating to the very core of me. I'll get to what set me off, but let me just tell you all the things that made it worse once I was already annoyed-frustrated-batshit crazy.

--I saw not one, not two, but FOUR people throw their damn cigarette butts out their car windows. Smoking annoys the shit out of me to begin with. I hate when I go to a bar and I come home smelling like ass from all the people who chain-smoked their way through happy hour. But I deal with it from certain family members who smoke. I don't complain out loud, I'm not rude, I just deal.with.it. and then go home and wash all my clothes and take a shower.
Anyway, what really annoyed me about this is that it is extremely dry around here. We had a random rainshower yesterday (the first in almost a month), but I swear it evaporated before it hit the ground. We have watering restrictions, and a burn ban. Most lawns look like hay, especially in commercial areas, and definitely along the highways. And here are ignorant asshats throwing their damn cigarettes out their window! WTF? I mean, if you can handle that shit in your lungs, why the hell can't you put it out in your damn car and handle the smell of it until you can throw it in a trash can?? I just don't get people!

-- At work, I have been trying to collect money. I won't go into detail, but it is pretty hard to get some people to pay, and I understand some of it may be due to the economy. But! Just tell me you don't have the damn money to pay me for the work we did 4 months ago, don't LIE! Annoying! Don't make me feel like I'm the pain in the ass, calling you every few days, when I am hanging on the lie YOU told ME.

-- This story bothered me when I read it last night, and I've been thinking about it all day. Do I really want to write another post about the illegal immigration 'issue' in our country? No, not really. But this story really pissed me off because the damn defense attorney for one of the defendents is actually trying to say that the victim provoked the defendents by retaliating against their racial slurs. WTF?? Are you kidding me? Grrrrrrr.

-- Has anyone else been following the jacked up story about little Caylee Anthony in Florida? She was allegedly abducted about a month ago, and her mother decided to allegedly search on her own, without telling any of her family. And then, finally, Caylee's grandmother is a bit worried, finds her daughter's car abandoned, and calls the cops. All of a sudden, Caylee's mom surfaces, like nothing is wrong, and somehow, Caylee's mom convinces her own mother that Caylee is okay-"Oh, she's probably settling down for a nap by now." And then all of a sudden: "OMG! Caylee's been missing for a month! Help!"
WTF? The stuff the mother is saying doesn't make sense. The tapes of her talking to her brother and sister on the phone from jail are odd. She doesn't sound upset that her daughter is missing. She sounds annoyed that everyone is upset about the missing 2 year old. She does not sound remorseful, hysterical (as I would be), out-of-her-mind batshit crazy that her kid is missing. And then the grandmother goes on Larry King on Tuesday, and talks about how she thinks her daughter is innocent, but then she starts talking in circles too, and none of it really makes sense. Where the fuck is the little girl???? In my gut, I feel mom is involved. I feel she ditched her. Or killed her. Very sad.

I would say that these types of news stories don't normally get to me, but they do. Every day. I don't seek them out on CNN.com or on the evening news, but they are there, every day. And it saddens me. Some days, it really pisses me off, the awful things people do. Other days, it makes me so very sad. Sad enough to want to just curl in the fetal position and cry myself to sleep. Dramatic? No. Just that empathetic.

--Lastly, let's talk a bit about censorship. I have read several people's posts about being concerned that family members, the IT department, co-workers, or bosses will find their blog. I also read someone's blog about a month or so ago, talking about how she was going to shut down her blog because her husband may very well be going into politics, and she would hate for anything she wrote to be used against him.
When I read all these posts, I commented to each of them that they should JUST BE THEMSELVES AND LET EVERYONE ELSE DEAL WITH IT IF THEY DON'T LIKE IT.
But is that the best idea? Can you really write when you feel as though you've got someone looking over your shoulder, that you wouldn't necessarily want knowing all your thoughts? I understand that when you start a blog, you are really putting yourself out there, for the 'whole internet' to see, but I think maybe it's different when you realize that your father has been checking out your blog, or your grandmother. When it's an anonymous person, you aren't worried about censorship (or at least I'm not). I'm not worried that someone won't like what I have to say, because, if you don't like what I wrote, you don't HAVE to come back, right? But when it's a loved one reading your shit, their feelings may get hurt. They may be surprised by what you have to say. And that, is the issue.
I started blogging on Myspace. For myself. It was an outlet, and I knew that people would have access, but that didn't much bother me. It's not like I was blogging about my sex life. I eventually started my blog here, because I wanted to get away from Myspace, and also because I wanted to be part of this awesome community. I wanted to reach out to others, make new friends, gain insight into things, get support. And yes, it is still my outlet, for me. And I could just as easily keep a journal, but I would not have met all the lovely women (and some men too! sorry guys!) if I had not been brave enough to put my shit out there.

So, lovely blogging community, please tell me: Do you censor yourself if you find out someone is reading your blog? Or do you just go for it, and not worry about their feelings? Or, do you go for broke and shut the damn thing down?

And here is my two little teeny raves for the day:

-- I finally won a PiF contest!! Woohoo!!! I won Fiona Picklebottom's contest! Yipeee!!! I get books! I love books! My husband? Not so much. He's sick of seeing them pile up, since the bookcase I got 8 months ago is already bursting. But: Yay me!!

--I was given a cute little blog award by Holly. Look over there ---> to your right. Cute huh? She is such a sweetheart for thinking of me, and if she wasn't 14 bajillion miles away, I would march over to her house right now, beat down her door, give her a big hug, and pinch her cute nose! And share a few bottles of wine. Or rum. Or tequila. You get my drift.


And, here it is! (Drumroll please!)

If you are interested, here's my chapter in Foodie, published today on Wordpress.

Go. Critique. Throw rotten tomatoes at me. Or....sing my praises!

I'll take that too.


Brief vacation, Boot camp frustration, Extended procrastination

Brief vacation:
My brother came in town Friday for my girl's birthday. I took a break from posting, but not really on purpose. I stayed up way late. I ate pretty healthy, other than the carrot cake we all ate with our hands, and the Italian ice cream we had one night. I played the WiiFit, and laughed until I cried at my brother's skinny ass trying to hula hoop. I drank mimosas and ate at odd times of day. If I didn't lose any weight this week, I have a feeling I know why!
Boot camp frustration:
Week two of boot camp has come and gone. Last week I busted my ass to eat well, and really enjoyed it. I did eat a greasy burger and greasier fries on my daughter's birthday, but damn it, that's what she wanted, and I caved. And my belly ached after I ate it. Ick.
Boot camp itself was killer. The scattered trainer has some high expectations, which I suppose is good, but I'm in a world of pain in certain areas of my body! She had us doing crazy things outside...I can't even explain or demonstrate, but my body is screaming. Each day, I can barely hike my ass up into my Jeep (if I just say 'car', my girl corrects me: "Mommy, it's a JEEP, not a car!!!" Get it straight!), and I guzzle a 1.5 liter of water during the hour-long class. I felt my legs give out several times on Friday, and I really did push my body to exhaustion.
That being said, my clothes still fit the same. Or should I say?- don't fit the same. It's pretty bad when you ask your girl on her birthday, 'Baby, what do you want to do?' and her reply is this:
'Mommy, I want to go buy you a shirt and shorts that fit you, okay? Then you feel better, okay?'
HOW SAD IS THAT??? She has seen/heard me pitching a fit in my closet, trying to find something that fits somewhat comfortably and looks somewhat decent.
I have kept up my business with the WiiFit, but I refuse to see what it says I weigh. I just cannot bear the thought of busting my ass in boot camp for 4 weeks and ending up in the same damn position I was in 4 weeks ago.
On a brighter note, I do feel better. I have more energy. I feel stronger in my core, in my stomach, and I can feel all the muscles pulsing and flexing when I move now. This morning, I saw the definition in my thighs and calves. LOVELY if I do say so myself!!!
Extended procrastination:
My turn has come to write a chapter for the online book titled Foodie. Check it out! The story is great so far, and the idea of different people writing each chapter is brilliant!
However, I was not saying any of this when I got the email saying it was my turn, and I had up to 2 weeks. I was almost in tears, panicking over something I had not yet written. I wrote the first couple of lines right away, and then left it sitting there on my computer screen for almost two weeks. Every time I opened my laptop, there it was, little cursor blinking, waiting for me to continue. And.I.just.couldn't.

Jeez, talk about getting stage fright, or procrastinating, or whatever. So, I finally finished it, the night before the deadline. Yet I still haven't sent it off to the editor, because....well, I don't know! I will send it tomorrow morning, after I sleep on my 1,036 words, and then, well, I guess you all can critique me, throw rotten salmonella-ridden tomatoes at me, or sing my praises. Whatev. At least it's done and over with!
And I would like to add, in run-on sentence form:
I have not won a single PiF contest yet, and hello??? I am leaving comments NON-STOP, and I paid an arm and a leg to mail off the package to my PiF contest winner in frickin' London, and seriously, why the hell is it so expensive to ship something over the damn Atlantic Ocean, and I am still so very jealous of all of you that went to BlogHer, I totally feel like I'm 'outside the circle' again, like I did in high school (how lame is THAT???), and Google Reader can bite my ass because it says I have 282 damn posts to read, and jeez-don't any of you do anything besides write??? While I'm here trying to write 1,000 damn words, with nothing to type, and I bounced my flabby ass off at my girl's birthday party, racing my brother and sister through the obstacle courses, dragging my girl up a 20 foot blow-up ladder only to fly down the slide at eardrum-shattering speed (with the speed burn on my ass to prove it!) and HOLY HELL, I am so old! I was panting and gasping and laughing and sweating, and my girl never once seemed to mind that her mom was being a kid with everyone else instead of doing the 'mom thing' and standing around watching all the kids play.
So there.


My bugaboo-

1096 days ago today, you were born. After almost exactly 9 months of thinking about you, you finally arrived. We had a rough start, but you came into this world strong, alert, and hungry (which doesn't surprise me, considering your parents, and the fact that your momma hadn't eaten a meal in about 12 hours!).
From the moment I saw your intense little face, I loved you.

You didn't cry right away, and I remember holding my breath. You had one little squeak of a cry, and then you seemingly locked eyes with your Daddy, and all was silent. As he checked out his baby girl, you examined him.

Those nights in the hospital were rough, but you seemed quite comfortable to be outside in our world.

Those first months were filled with joy, amazement, intense love, gratitude, relief, and grace. You were the easiest baby I ever met, other than those first weeks of breastfeeding struggles, which thank the good Lord, we changed up the day I finally broke down and bought formula. You filled my days with so many new things, and I loved watching you explore your 'firsts'.

I would be lying if I said those first months were not also filled with frustration, exhaustion, tears, confusion, and loneliness. The screeching phase was not a fun one for me. Nor was the 'I must have you in my eyesight at all times, even when you pee' phase. But for each frustrating, confusing time, there was something just as beautiful to cherish: your giggle, your silly cooing, the sparkle in your eye upon recognition of your Daddy, the way you pushed your head into my neck, the brightness of your smile.

I was a new mommy, honey, and you never seemed to mind; I just didn't know what the hell I was doing, even when I did. I have never stopped being so grateful that you have been so easy-going through this wild ride we call your life. Daddy and I have flown by the seat of our pants at times, and you just fly by right along with us. You have been sassy, silly, and laid back through everything, even when you broke your ankle 6 months ago. It was my heart pounding wildly in the doctor's office, not yours.
The past 1096 days have flown by. There were days when I just wished the sun would set, your father would come home from work, and you would go to sleep. Those days dragged by, but mostly, it has flashed right before my eyes. Last night, while bathing you, I realized you are all arms and legs now. You are so tall, so a little girl. And I am sitting here amazed that you are no longer a little baby, but a little girl, with thoughts, dreams, imagination, and desires, that you make known any chance you can.
Tonight I stood in the store, browsing little girls' birthday cards. I found one that had a big 3 on the front of it, and for the tiniest split second, I thought 'Oh wait, she's not 3! She's just a baby!', and then. I realized that you are not a baby, and you are 3. I actually got choked up at this realization again, as I do each time it smacks me in the face.
Bugaboo, you have stolen my heart, and your Daddy's as well. And I can speak for both of us when I say this: We don't mind at all. We love your sass, your independence, your intelligence, your personality, your affection, your charm, your smile, your love.
Happy birthday, baby girl! Your momma loves you more than all the stars in the sky.


Regret the size of my heart

I originally posted this on my blog on myspace August 23, 2006. I read this post by Moo the other day, and it made me think of this one. As of today, I have still never had any response from this person. Yet, this person still shows up in my dreams, and for days afterward, he stays on my mind.
I wonder what we are supposed to do when we are not forgiven. How should we take it? When do we forgive the person for not forgiving us? How? When does my heart stop hurting at the thought of this person, who was a dear friend, and nothing more, this person who will not speak to me, has not spoken to me in over 10 years? How do I forgive myself for ruining a good friendship?How do I just 'let it go'? --

So, I had this really awesome friend in high school. He was so funny, laid back, sweet, athletic, smart,and really loyal. I adored his family. I wanted to live at his house, but I don't recall that I was ever there day after day.....
We continued being friends once we both started college. I even went to hang out with him on his campus during the summer. I enjoyed my time with him there, but was startled to discover something new about him that I had never known before, and it scared the living shit out of me. He begged me to keep it a secret, and not tell anyone. I was so torn. I can't watch someone drown and not lend a hand. Have you seen those commercials that have a kid lying in the middle of the road and his friend sees an 18 wheeler coming, but doesn't move to help his friend in the road? Or the one where the kid is drowning in the lake and the friend is standing on the dock and isn't sure if he should help? They are 'say no to drugs' commercials.
Anyway, I was the person standing on the side of the road, or standing on the dock. I wanted to be as loyal as him, and make a promise that he wanted me to keep. I wanted to keep his secret, and make him happy. But, I couldn't keep my damn mouth shut too much.
He doesn't know this, but when I went home, I spent several days not sleeping...tossing and turning this crap in my mind. I was torn, and I have spent most of my life being torn when it comes to making decisions (damn it! why'd I have to be born a Pisces????). I wanted so badly to keep his secret. As far as I know, he has kept a few of my secrets from high school, so it only seemed fair, right? But if I kept his secret, it would destroy me, and possibly him, so....
I, in a roundabout way, told who needed to know that something was going on. I didn't say exactly what I saw or knew, just enough to get the point across.
And, somehow, we never spoke again. I don't know if we just lost touch, or if he thought I told and was pissed, or if we just grew up and away. I don't really know. But I know that a few years later I found him on Classmates and saw that he was doing sooooo much better.
And now, with the lovely discovery of the black hole that is MySpace, I have found him again...only to get no response. I have no idea if he is angry with me, or is just too busy to chat it up with an old friend, but:
If you are reading this, you know who you are. I am sorry for telling, but really, I am NOT sorry, because I feel that it was the best thing to happen for your sake. I could not have lived with myself if something hideous had happened to you. I did not want to look in your pretty eyes someday and see that the life had been extinguished. I hope you are doing well (seems that you are!) and I hope you can forgive me, if you are angry. I'd love to be friends again.


She might have a problem

We moved the night before Thanksgiving. The house in Springtown was built in the 70's, and for all intents and purposes, had stayed in the 70's. When we bought the house, we got the house full of furniture and mice. The previous owners had done their best to keep up with the mice, but they were elderly, and you could tell that they had lost the battle. There were droppings everywhere. Among the droppings, we also found little chunks of yellow flaky stuff, that strangely resembled dried-up playdoh.
I quickly learned it was rat/mouse poison.

By the time we moved our stuff in that day, the sun had set. Our stuff was everywhere. You could barely see the floor. After the warm welcome from one of our neighbors, I didn't want to let my dogs outside unattended. So they stayed in with us, and after we lost steam trying to unpack and attempting to move the old furniture into the garage, we slept in the living room. My hubby slept on the couch, I slept on the loveseat/chair, between us a sea of boxes and furniture.

I woke up to a dark house, and could hear a crunching sound. I realized that one of the dogs was chewing on something. I assumed that it was one of their porcelain dog bones, as I had unpacked them on a whim. I went back to sleep.

Awhile later, I woke again, to Kooter sitting in front of my chair, his wet nose about 2 inches from mine. Daisy? Nowhere to be found.

I convinced him to lie down, so I could sleep a bit longer. However, I started to hear a crunching sound again. I decided to check up on the sound. I maneuvered my way into the kitchen, only to find Daisy eating something strangely resembling dried-up playdoh.

The fucking dog ate rat poison.

And with the house such a mess, there was no telling where the hell she found it, or how much of it she had eaten.

At 6:30am on Thanksgiving morning, I was frantically calling the animal hospital 20 miles away, trying to find out what the hell I needed to do. I was told 'Your dog will go into convulsions, have seizures, go blind, and then die'. LOVELY.

We spent the better part of our Thanksgiving at an animal hospital about 45 miles away. The only one open anywhere near us. We had to bring both dogs, because we weren't sure if Kooter had eaten any of it. They had to induce vomiting. And Daisy, the dog who not only eats everything, but pukes at the drop of a hat, would not puke. They had to give her the medication twice before she puked up some yellow playdoh shit.

Kooter? No poison in his tummy.

They both got shots in the ass, and were given prescriptions for Vitamin K or some shit like that, to make sure they didn't die in the next month. Do you really want to know how much this set me back??

On the way home, the dogs were in the back of my SUV, with all the seats down. Daisy tried to lie next to Kooter, and he started growling at her. She started to get all submissive 'I'm sorry I put you through hell at the vet's office', but he wasn't buying it. She kept at it, and Kooter attacked her. While we were driving down the highway. Scary fangs, foaming at the mouth, growling, barking, trying to kill his sister.

Daisy flew from the back of the SUV to the front in about .5468 seconds. Fur was flying all over the place, she was drooling everywhere, and she jumped into my lap in the front seat, stuffing her dumb head under my armpit.

Kooter laid in the back the rest of the ride home, growling and shooting her the evil eye any time she peeked out from under my armpit.

Fucking dogs.


Oh, Kashi, how I love thee

Day 3 of boot camp:

I think it went well. I ran my butt off, and got so hot I got the goosebumps, which I guess isn't good? Drank a 1.5 liter of water in that hour. I'm sore as heck, but I'm WIDE AWAKE and feeling like I could do anything right about now. In fact, I just spent the last hour trying to kick my hubby's ass at Mario Cart on the Wii. OMG! I suck at driving, but that game is great!

Anyway, I decided to go back to eating healthy again, because, quite frankly, fast food was really starting to make my stomach turn. I've been eating a ton more fruit, and adding Emerg-C to my water. I'm 'making better food choices', as my trainer says.

I have fallen in love with Kashi. The cereal is awesome. The cookies? Awesome. The snack bars? Awesome. Do they make ice cream? Yogurt? Come on, I.NEED.MORE.KASHI.

The result? Not so awesome.

My stomach is....ahem, gassy, shall we say? All that damn fiber is really doing a number on me!!! TMI, right? But I promised full disclosure, didn't I?

Anyway, I don't think I've lost a pound, and I spent a good 20 minutes trying to find something that fit decent for church, BUT! I feel stronger, more energetic, and my curves look nicer in the mirror.


I've got a couple of technical questions for anyone who cares to help me out.

First, I decided to sign up for Google Analytics. I want to see who is coming regularly, how they find me, how many hits I get when I chat about my bowel issues, that sorta thing. But, I am apparently technologically challenged. I don't know where the frick to put 'the code' in my post. WTF?? And the 'help' section is absolutely no help at all to me. HELP!!!

Second, I have about a year's worth of blogs on myspace. I want to move them over here, because, if I'm allowed to toot my own horn (toot!toot!), some of my stuff is worth reading (Jeez, apparently exercise makes you all self-esteem-y and ballsy!). Do I seriously have to go post by post and import them all that way, or is there some trick of the trade to getting them all at once?? I am high maintenance, huh?

Third, and this really has nothing to do with the blog.....I NEED DRESSES! Casual, flow-y, pretty, not too much of a cleavage show...I can't find cute, bright summer dresses anywhere!!! Where the hell did all you going-to-BlogHer ladies get your dresses? I would prefer not to spend an arm and/or a leg, and I would also, if possible, prefer not to order online, because I WANT THEM NOW (oooohhh, fiesty AND ballsy).

Help! Help??


Boot camp & WiiFit

I mentioned that I had an odd week, and I did! In a nutshell, my cousin from Colorado (who is 24), came to visit, and he stayed with us. He's a cool guy, and we haven't really spent much time together as adults (or as kids, for that matter), so it was nice to get comfortable with him. However, my father and his wife were with us every day, and that??-Is another whole story. I am more than a little frazzled and frustrated after all that. I just can't even articulate it right now, so instead, I'll tell you all about the other new thing I started this week.

I signed up for a boot camp. It's 4 weeks long, an hour each, and I go three days a week. Actually, I've already figured out that the instructor is a bit all over the place, so I could probably go all 5 days a week, and she wouldn't notice.

Before boot camp started, I had to do the whole pre-evaluation-tell-me-how-fat-and-out-of-shape-I-am. And I knew it would suck. And it did.

So, since I am such a shy little wallflower, I figured I would go for full disclosure, and just let you know all of my stats. The way I see it, maybe one or some of you will get some motivation by my lack of embarrassment, or by my progress over the next 4 weeks. If not, well, then I will at least get some giggles out of you.

Weight- 1--

I don't care what the scale says. Or so I say. I understand that muscle weighs more, so this lovely number may not really go down. I can't really say full disclosure, I guess, because I'm not telling you the exact number. I'll just say that I weigh 19 lbs. more than I did this time last year, and also 19 lbs. more than I did before I got pregnant with my girl.

Total Body Water %- 46.9%

Apparently this is at the bottom of the normal range for healthy women. This should increase as my body fat % decreases.

Body Fat %- 42.48% (58.2 lbs of fat!!)

I can't even believe this one. But I guess I can. I have lost so much muscle tone since I had my girl, and I haven't been consistent enough with my exercising to actually build the muscle tone back up.

My metabolic age- 37
I'm only 30.

Timed mile- I ran 2 laps, and walked 2 laps- 13:32

1 minute worth of push-ups- 35

1 minute worth of sit-ups (not crunches)-33

Monday was my first night, and I loved it! I think I sweated more than I have in a really long time, and I felt my legs get all jello-y and fatigued, but it was great! There are about 16 of us, including my mother.

We only went 2 times this week, because the instructor was sick on Friday. So, I can't really say I feel any progress, other than the soreness of my arms and every single muscle in my stomach.

To add to this, I bought a WiiFit on Thursday! Last night we set it up, and giggled while we made our very own 'Mii'. The WiiFit told me my age is 45, and said my body fat % was at about 24%. Hmmmm. It also informed me that I have shitty balance, which I already knew.

I'm going to go for doing the WiiFit on the days I don't have boot camp. I am really hoping to shave the body fat % down. But what I really want is to feel strong again, capable of anything, and confident. Here's hoping....



Anyone out there? It's been an odd week for me, and I feel all lost and stuff, since I haven't posted anything, or read anyone else's stuff! I'm hoping most of you awesome people are at BlogHer, and then I won't feel so bad about not scheduling some posts for while I have been 'away'. I'm also hoping that some of you new readers will come back....I promise I'm not a bore! Please?
So, the very first thing I read tonight was the wonderful news from Moo. I am so excited for her!!
Then I caught up on my good friend's blog. Which, by the way....

I am so very happy to tell you that my lovely friend Jill has finally created her very own little blog! I can take absolutely no credit at all....I think I may have tried nudging her along a few times, but it was her, and her alone, who spent 1454 hours thinking of a name, setting up the blog, and creating her very first post. She is a great writer, and you must go check her out. Please leave her some comments, show her some love and encouragement, and enjoy!

Her blog: Babies & Bundt Cakes

Go. Now. I'll wait.

Lastly, I got caught up on the wonderful life of Holly. I love reading her blog, because I can totally relate, and sometimes I feel like she is reading my mind! It's wonderful!

Well, I'm tired, brain dead, my nerves are shot, my lips are chapped, my head is killing me, and I can't lift my arms any further than about a 45 degree angle. I promise I will explain....

But for now, I must find a comfy place to lay my fuzzy head. I have a TON of reading to catch up on!


My new favorite baseball player

Well, my cousin is in town from Colorado, so I'm wayyyyyy behind on my blog reading (DAMN YOU, google reader! Why must you mock me with your huge numbers!?!).
I am also behind on my posting. I'll catch up, I promise!

I was going to post a big snazzy picture of my new favorite baseball player, but apparently blogspot and I are not getting along this evening. Anyone else having this issue? Orrrr....is it just me?

Awhile back I made mention of a tiny disappointment, but I may very well have recovered from that this evening. Did anyone else watch the Home Run Derby? The Celebrity game? Just me?

Anyway, Josh Hamilton is my new favorite baseball player, AND he plays for the Rangers! Yipeee! Maybe the Rangers have a chance..? Maybe...? No?

Well, anyway, he is awesome. A.W.E.S.O.M.E.

That's all I got, until I can post pictures of him and then I'll blab a bit more about his awesomeness. Until then, I'll watch some more Intervention, drink some more wine, and get a bit more sun in the kiddie pool.


Attack of the bugs, Part Tres

The bug situation has continued, but I haven't posted about it because I don't want any of you to think I live in a filth-ridden house, or I'm a shitty cleaner, or...hell, I don't know. You probably won't ever come to my house anyway, but you sure as hell won't once you read this. (But I promise, it's mostly because I live in a small subdivision that is still being finished out, and is only a year old, and there's a few acres behind my house, so....I promise it's not my fault!!!)

We left off with little gnats hatching by the gazillons in a couple of the house plants. And the daddy long legs snooping on me in the shower. Well, since then...
*I found a scorpion about a half inch long in my bathroom.
*I found a scorpion over an inch long on my back porch.
*I found the teeniest tiniest scorpion in the toilet bowl. He was about the size of my pinkie nail, and the only reason I happened to look down as I popped a squat was because I was using the hallway bathroom, which the dogs us as their water bowl.
*I found a centipede/millipede/whatever-apede in my bathroom.
*My hubby found a large black widow in our garage, on the ladder that we had just dragged all through the house, and also climbed all over, as we were changing out the light bulbs in the house.
*The fucking mosquitoes are multiplying like gnats or rabbits or mice. Every time I go in the backyard, I get swarmed.

*And this:
I get a shiver down my spine every time I look at it! Do you know what that is??? I'll tell you!-It's a big frickin' pile of daddy long legs!!!!!!!!! It's in the corner by my side door. What the hell?
For about 20 seconds I thought maybe I should leave them there, since I had heard that they keep other bugs away. So I googled them. Apparently they are not in the same class as spiders, and there is an actual spider that is called a daddy long legs too. This one likes to eat on decaying plants and dead bugs. No frickin' dead bugs around here, guys. Wrong house.
Last night there was a little fly-thingy flying/crawling around my bedroom windows. I thought he was on the outside, but he wasn't. I completely forgot about him.
This morning, while making my bed, I grabbed the throw pillows off of the window seat. I had been up approximately 3 minutes. I felt a huge sting on one of my toes, and I jumped back. I looked down, and there was that little fly-thingy, curled in a ball, like stinging me was more than he could stand. A fly swatter and a few minutes of well-deserved beatings, and...he's swimmin' with the fishes now.
So, an exterminator has come to 'fix the problem'. And part of his fixing has been to put little sticky bug houses behind my toilet bowls.
I came home this evening to sticky bug houses all over my house, in about 459824 pieces. Except for the piece stuck on Daisy's nose, where she couldn't reach or see it.
Can I please stay with someone else until all these buggies go away for good? I just get the willies when I go to bed, thinking about what could crawl on me while I'm drooling on my pillow.


Saturday/Sunday shopping spree

I went a little nuts this weekend. Really, it had nothing to do with the whole bottle of wine and no food, I swear. I just, I don't know, have decided to start about eleventy million projects all at once. So.......please, enjoy:

My camera does absolutely no justice to the beauty of this orchid. I have been coveting this particular one for 2 weeks, but in general, I have been wanting one for awhile.
This was one of 3 purchases at one of my favoritest places EVER-The Funky Monkey. This shirt is made of silk. The ruffle continues around the back, and goes up the back. Upon seeing me in it on Saturday night, my husband said, 'It looks like a stitched up plastic bag'. Oh, gee, thanks.
Purchase #2 at the Funky Monkey is a beauteous amber and pearl bracelet. I could not resist. It is so unique.
Purchase #3 is this adorable little monkey, whom my girl named 'Cookiebutt' in about 2.5 seconds. He is soooo living the good life: he sleeps in a comfy bed with 14,000 other stuffed animals and 4 blankets every night, and then hangs out in my jeep every day (literally, since he has little suction cups on all 4 of his hands/feet/appendages?). Then, at the end of the day, he gets swung around by his skinny little arms at warp speed, until he crashes and burns.

Here are 7 of the 8 books I ordered off of Amazon (AWESOME sale-they were all under $8 each!!! And free shipping!). Most of them are for my mom for Christmas, but hello? I can't let them go to waste, collecting dust...so I will be reading them between now and say, July 31st? Shh, don't tell my mom.
And this sweet mess on my dining room table? Ooooh, these purchases are all the way up there with the excitement of my Funky Monkey purchases. Fabric, fabric, and more fabric! You get to guess what I am going to do with all the snazzy-ass fabric, canvases, and yes, that is a big-ass pillow. About half of my readers (meaning, 2 of my readers!) know what I'm doing, but the rest of you...guess away!


Huh? Who are you, and what have you done with my crab cake??

I have been a bit whine WAH WAH WAH woe is me about the fact that my girl has been acting, well, ahem, like a 3 year old. The whole independent thing, mixed with a little 'hold me hold me HOLDME', sprinkled with some 'Why? Why? Why?'. Most evenings, when I put her to bed, I quickly tiptoe down the hallway towards my living room, and it is not until I settle on the couch that I realize I have been holding my breath. And it takes me a good 20 minutes to relax, to unwind from the non-stop chatter of 'Why are you doing it that way? Who bought that for me? Can I have a snack? No, I don't want water.'
Each time I think I am on the brink of losing it (it being what is left of my sanity), I remind myself to take a deep breath and count my blessings. I know that she is such a good little girl. I know that I want her to exert her own little independence. I know that I want her to be outspoken, strong, and opinionated.

But does it always have to be with me? (in a whiny, sniffling voice)
Over the past several days, my girl has been so accommodating, so obedient, so pleasant, so.....not a 3 year old. At the store today, she asked for some cookies, and I told her we still had cookies at home. Her response? 'Okay, next time we get cookies' and that was it.

When she asked for a little Polly Pockets thing with 4 bazillion little fricking plastic pieces, I said 'No, it's too close to your birthday for you to be asking for all this stuff'. Her response? 'Okay, I get it next time. Or I will ask my grandma for her to buy it for my birthday party, okay?'
Last night was bath time. Usually, this is a stressful time in our house. She does not like water in her ears or her eyes, yet she refuses to put her head back so I can run water on her hair without it getting in her ears or eyes. Since she was about 5 months old, bath time has been such a love/hate situation in our house. She loves to play in the water, splash the hell out of me, play with her little squirt toys, but hates having her hair washed. Most baths the past 2 and a half years have ended in tears (usually hers, but a handful of times, mine too).

Last night? My girl said 'I put my head like this' and proceeded to put her head back far enough that her hair was in the bath water. My mouth fell open. She closed her eyes and said 'Okay, momma. My eyes are closed. You can pour water now.' I just sat there, and after a few seconds, she cracked open one eye, looked at me and said 'Momma, are you gonna do it or not?' So I did it, and she actually laughed.
Would it be too good to be true that my girl is getting past the tantrum stage? Probably. I won't fool myself into thinking my crab cake is gone for good. But this? This is a wonderful time for me.


Keeping hope alive

Three years ago, I was suffering from some pretty bad pregnancy-induced insomnia. It could have been that my left hip was screaming approximately 23.75 hours a day. Or it could have been that my dear little wee girl liked to kick the living crap out of the very top of my ribs on my right side. Or it could have possibly been that I was so damn thirsty, drank a ton all day, hence, peed about 12.58 times a night. Eh, either way, I was up.

One night I caught a show on the Discover Channel, or some such educational non-sense that I watch non-stop. It was about 5 American contractors working on an aerial anti-drug campaign with the Colombian government in February 2003. Their plane crashed in the middle of FARC territory, where the FARC immediately killed 2 of the Americans, along with a Colombian contractor that was with them.

The show went on to show the 3 remaining Americans finding out that not only had their employer been bought out by another company here in the US, but that their 2 co-workers had been shot and killed.

The show was gut-wrenching. I sat curled up on my couch, biting the inside of my lip until it bled, tears streaming down my face. I was absolutely livid that these men were being held hostage by some very scary people, and our government was doing nothing. Yeah, yeah, I know-I'm sure there were various under-the-table deals going on, that the public isn't privy to. However, this showed in 2005, about a year and a half AFTER they had been captured. How the hell could the US do nothing to save them?

After watching the show, I sat up another couple of hours, surfing the 'net for information on the men, their families, the history of the FARC, and any possible updates on their conditions. I wrote my Senator and Representatives. I ranted and raved about the show for weeks after I saw it. I had long conversations with my father about the military, our government, and my feeling of utter helplessness in this situation. And I prayed.

I have prayed for those men for the past 3 years. There have been countless sleepless nights where I have stared out my window at the stars, and wondered if they were still alive, and if they had any hope left. Not like I've prayed non-stop, but they were definitely on my list of people to pray for.

Saturday night, after a bottle of wine, I turned on CNN at about 3am. And there were the faces of the three men: Marc Gonsalves, Thomas Howes, & Keith Stansell.

They were rescued by the Colombian government. After 5 years. I was speechless (and not because I was both drunk and stuffing my face with fries). I found myself saying 'Oh my God' over and over.

See, I am one of those people who prays, hopes, and worries, but sometimes I don't have much faith in my own ability to hope. I was letting logic take over--after so many years, and no updates about those men, it seemed pretty logical to say that they were probably dead. Yet, I continued to pray for them, whenever their faces entered my mind, trying to keep just the slightest bit of hope alive, for them.

And for me. I was hoping that 'the powers that be' would do something. I was hoping that they would be able to escape. I was hoping that God was hearing all of the prayers whispered in bedsheets. I was hoping that if they were freed/rescued, it would prove to me that having faith and hope actually means something.

And it did. They are alive. They are all about 30-40 pounds skinnier, but they are well. They are back in the US, back in the arms of their families.

They are alive.


Pay It Forward contest results

I intended to put all the names in a cute hat and have my girl draw a name, but then I went to the neighborhood party, drank a whole bottle of wine by myself, ate like 2 crackers, got so drunk that I couldn't see my neighbors' faces clearly, went to Wendy's at 1:45am, only to find that my hubby's wallet was at home, watched CNN while he went back to Wendy's with his wallet, ate my Wendy's fries and little burger in approximately 4.52 seconds, drank 3 glasses of water, attempted to remove my eye make-up with something that apparently does not remove eye make-up, and.....passed out.
And dreamt about drinking huge glasses of water.

Soooooo. Yeah.

The random number generator was much easier.

That being said, commentor #18 is the winner! Dynamita, from London! I can't tell you how excited I am to get to send something to London! Fun!! Dynamita, please email me at dlwinkler@msn.com so I can get your address and all that other stuff.

More on the embarrassment of getting hammered with snooooooty neighbors after I go eat a whole watermelon and drink a few gallons of water.


Happy 4th!

No time for a snazzy, snarky, silly post today. Off to stuff my face and try to float in a pool all day.

Hope everyone has a safe holiday! Or weekend, for those of you Canadian-type-people.

Don't forget to enter my PiF contest! It ends at 11:59 central time this evening! Good luck to all of you!

"You! Hey You! Enter my mom's contest, or else!"


Tying up some loose ends

I went on vacation well over a month ago. Yet, I have not told you anything fun that I did, or showed you pictures of the adventures. Please, grab a cold beverage, and get comfortable....
First: We stayed at a hotel that was a stone's throw away from the filming location of this movie. It was beautiful (the hotel). The filming location-not so beautiful, but still very intriguing. I love to go to very old places, and walk around all the history. So, we went. And it was all fenced off. A local told us that when the owner of the land passed away, it was sold, and someone turned it into a restaurant for awhile. Then it was closed down, and now it is in shambles and all fenced off. It is rather sad. I was hoping to do some exploring, but the best I got was a few pictures and a short walk up 3 or 4 of the steps.

Here's the movie location from my hotel. And here:
And here's the hotel from the movie set, after the hike along the shore, where we saw huge iguanas (imagine that), tons of black scary-looking crabs all over the 4.5million rocks along the shore:

Second: I mentioned that the beach was a huge disappointment. It was like kitty litter, and the undertow was unreal. So, we paid for 'a trip to the beach' on an island about 30 minutes from our hotel. The guy was really good at selling the damn 'excursion': big beaches, delicious lunch, free drinks, monkeys, maxin' and relaxin'. He failed to mention: we had to take a little boat from the shore (not a dock b/c they don't have one), with the unreal undertow and huge waves, with no life jackets....we had to take this boat to a big party-style-boat out in the middle of the ocean, and transfer from the little boat to the big boat. That might not sound like a big deal to you, but we are not the most in-shape bunch. My FIL had back surgery about 8 months ago, my MIL is as light as a feather, my mother is, well, a klutz, and HELLO??-My daughter is a toddler!!! To say the least, it was stressful.
So, we survive the transfer, and make the 30 minutes trip to the 'island'. It was beautiful, but I have no pictures of it. Don't ask.
We got to the island, which conveniently had a dock (Thank goodness), and we sought out some comfy chairs. The sand was much more like real sand,and even had shells! My girl played in the sand until her swim-diaper was so full of sand she could barely walk. The drinks were weak, and I was somehow voted 'designated parent' again, so no loss there, I guess.
It was pretty obvious that this was not a natural landscape, if you get what I mean. It's not like the monkeys, parrots, and sea lion all lived there on their own. People could go snorkeling with a sea lion that they pulled out of a cage, put on a small boat, and brought out to a group of snorkelers a couple of hundred yards off the shoreline. I was a bit miffed that they actually had it in a cage.
Then came the little 'whistling ducks'. They were cute, and we were able to hand feed them little meal worms. But were they in their natural habitat? No. The guy with them, the 'trainer', said he had raised them since birth, and they lived with him in his home. Cute, but again, not really authentic, ya know?:
Then, the monkeys. Or should I say monkey. On a leash. That they took out of a cage. Sigh. He was adorable, and had such beautiful colors, but it bothered me that he wasn't just hanging out in his own habitat. Here's the little guy, that chattered, and spent 5.2 seconds on my arm before smacking my girl's hand and jumping back to his 'trainer'.
(The look on my face comes from my noticing that he had a bright green butt).
There was also this beautiful owl named Frida (again, not in her natural habitat), but by then, my camera's batteries had bit the dust again. My mom has a picture of me with her. I love owls. Not enough to collect little owls or get an owl tattoo, but they are gorgeous, and I've got a Springtown story or two involving an owl (or two).

Here's the normal-looking crab that I pissed off because I followed him around trying to get a decent shot for my girl:

And here's the teeniest, tiniest little hermit crab ever, that my sister tried to pull out of his shell because 'his shell is pretty'. That went over well, let me tell you. :
(Sorry it's blurry. The little guy was smaller than my pinky nail, but he moved like a bat outta hell!)

So, that was the beach excursion.

Third: (I told you to get comfortable)

My mother, sister, my girl, and I decided we wanted to go horseback riding. We all love horses. The same dumbass that sold us the beach trip sold us this one. He told us several lies: a--we would go into the hills/mountains, and also along a beach; b--my girl could ride on the horse with me due to her age; c--my sister could ride on the horse with my mom, due to her nervousness; d--it would be fun.
So, we wake up early, and we go down to the lobby, where the bus is supposed to pick us up. No bus. So after about 30 minutes, they call a taxi for us, which will supposedly take us to the bus. We get there, have to pay the taxi (when all transportation was supposedly included in the price), and there is no bus. NO.BUS. So then we have to get in another taxi, to another bus station, where holy hell, the bus actually exists!
About 10 minutes into the trip, the AC on the bus stops working. No problem-it's like 86 degrees, and the bus has windows. Yipeee.
Then the exhaust starts backing up into the bus. So we all get high and light-headed. Weeee.
Here we are on the bus, getting high:

We are almost there when the 'guide' tells us to look to our right: 24 hour, all-inclusive hotel, ahem, PRISON. Did anyone watch Prison Break this past season? (Helllooooo, hot men on that show!) This prison was a spitting image of the one on the show....lots of guards, next to no roof, lots of sand, and no hope.
And guess where our 'horse ranch' was?? Yeah, you guessed it: next to the prison. Damn sure didn't see that in the brochure.
When we get there, we find that there is no beach, that my girl cannot ride with me, my sister cannot ride with my mom, we all must wear helmets (they actually gave a motorcycle helmet to one guy with a big head! WTF??), except my girl, because 'We don't have any small enough for her'. WTF?
The upsides: The food was awesome. The horses were sweet. The scenery was breath-taking.

The downsides: My horse didn't want to listen for shit. The 'walk along the river banks' was really a walk through small, muddy puddles. The 'hike through the mountains' contained climbing on rocks at a 45 degree angle. The fear that there was a prisoner on the loose, trying to hide in all the damn rock and dust and spindly trees.
(Oh, and my camera had to be shoved into a plastic bag with a water bottle, since there was nowhere else to store it on the horse. Let's chat about that a second: I had to hold the bag in the same hand that I was holding the rope. And it kept falling in my lap, between my woo-ha and the saddle. So, if you don't see where this is going, you haven't read enough about my lack of luck...with the constant trotting, the water bottles um, exploded, um, all over my woo-ha area, and um, I looked like I pissed myself. Oh, and um, the camera? It sorta stopped working for a bit. )
My girl got her 'very own cowboy' because she was so small. She had to ride with one of the ranch hands. Which, I was fine with, because I had watched him with the horses prior to us getting on, and it was obvious that he knew what he was doing. But, my girl was a bit uncomfortable at first. Thankfully, my sister got the dumbest horse ever, who was quite literally bringing up the rear, and my girl and her cowboy were right next to her. My mom's horse was a lazy ass (ha!), so she was back there too. Mine? She didn't give a shit what I wanted. She kept trying to get ahead of the same 2 horses, come hell or high water (or low water, in this case), so I didn't really get to ride next to my girl. She loved galloping. So, here's my view:

Notice the dust? Yeah, that's my horse's fault.
And my girl? On the way back to the 'camp' for lunch, she fell asleep on the horse. No, really. Proof:

She was OUT. Poor cowboy had to hold her for the last 20 minutes of the trip, because she was leaning. He got a good American dollar tip from me. Contrary to the look on his face, he was so kind-hearted about it.
So yeah. That was the horseback riding trip.
Fourth: The contest! Don't forget to enter my contest! It ends at 11:59pm, central time, on July 4th. And go to Swistle's site and enter everyone else's PiF contest.
Fifth: My lovely pre-eval for boot camp is next Saturday. Torture, I tell you, torture. I will be weighed, measured, pinched, prodded, and I'm sure I will leave feeling like a damn cow (with a cute haircut).
Sixth: Fourth of July plans, anyone? I will be sunning myself at my in-law's on Friday, watching fireworks with my girl and my dad Friday night, going to lunch with Kristie on Saturday, going to a neighborhood party Saturday (woohoo! Just what I need-alcohol and new neighbors who are my parents' ages and older! That oughta give me some blog material, huh???), and a girl's trip to the fabric store and maybe dessert on Sunday with Jill. I'll probably end up the designated parent at most of these things......
And SEVENTH: This is the best thing of all!!! I got my very own 2008 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited 4 door, 4x4 this weekend!!! It's dark blue, it so pretty, and it only had 72 miles on it! I am soooo excited! And? I got a 4 inch lift on it today!! Woohoooooo! I have wanted one of these since I was like 17! Only took me 13 years. My girl? She loves it! She says she likes 'her' Jeep. I promise I'll have pictures soon. Yipeeee!
And on that note, I shall end this novel of a post, and take my lazy ass to bed. Happy Wednesday everyone!


Meme whore (damn it!)

So, I read Mooooooo all the time, and awhile back she posted this meme, and I found it intriguing. I love photography, but I'm not an expert. I registered for a photopgraphy class in college, and then dropped it because my dad didn't want to pay for the 'required camera', and I damn sure didn't have the money at the time. I think I got this love from my mother, as I did my love of writing, poetry, and silliness. So, it's apparently meme month, or something.

The rules:

a. Type your answer to each of the questions below into Flickr Search.
b. Using only the first page, pick an image.
c. Copy and paste each of the URLs for the images into fd’s mosaic maker.

The questions that inspired the photos:

1. What is your first name? (And let me tell you, if you go put my first name in, there are SEVERAL neeeeked pictures of women! What the hell? I thought briefly of using one of them, because the first one made me giggle. Click here if you dare.)
2. What is your favorite food?
3. What high school did you go to?
4. What is your favorite color?
5. Who is your celebrity crush?
6. Favorite drink?
7. Dream vacation?
8. Favorite dessert?
9. What you want to be when you grow up?
10. What do you love most in life?
11. One word to describe you.
12. Your flickr name (I don't have a flickr account or name, so I put in a nickname my family uses for me).

My result:

Fun, huh? Go. Do it. Now. I dare you.