In the myst of the mosquitoes

I've got a beautiful backyard going on, if I do say so myself. I still have a long way to go, but I'm slowly getting there. I've got sweet potato vine that needs to start growing already, will ya?, tomatoes that need to turn red, strawberries slowly getting there, & lots of blank areas just waiting to be filled with beautious stuff.
I can lose hours in the day while weeding, pruning, planting, and watering my plants and flowers. Last Sunday, while my girl & her friend Lorelei squealed in the kiddie pool (the real one, not this one), I had time to spend doing those things.
Also? Look at the birdhouse my girl painted. She is so proud of it, and of course, so am I.
And then there is Daisy. The dog that used to avoid me at all costs. The dog who now follows me everywhere I go in the yard, who's snout goes up my ass if I stop short. Yet, she apparently
does not want her picture taken. Seriously?
I can't tell you how many pictures she ends up in because she must be around one of us at.all.times, yet, when I want to take a cute picture of her, this is the crap I get.
I plan on planting some more herbs this weekend, (the ones to deter the stupid mosquitoes), as well as a few ferns & other sun-loving, flowering things. I can't wait!


The day I pissed off another religion

While randomly clicking on links to blogs the other day, I came across this post. It cracked me up, because seriously, some people are just soooo anti-social & for those social butterflies (like myself), it is unbelievably painful to be stuck in an awkward situation with someone who just does not want to talk. Somehow, that reminded me of this story:

I moved into a little apartment when I left home. It was about 2 seconds from campus, and was perfect for me (not so much for Kooter, but that's another story all together). I was young, skinny, and still learning how to be assertive, authoritative, and sassy. I struggled a bit with anxiety, as I still do. I was also drunk a lot, but I digress.

The doorbell rang one day, and it was 2 young men, Mormons, asking me about my faith in God. Now, if you know me at all, you know that I am polite and respectful to everyone, sometimes to a fault. So, of course, I politely tell them that I was raised in the Catholic church, and do believe in God. One of them actually stepped his foot into my teeny foyer. They continued to ask me things: Did I believe in Jesus? Did I pray? Did I attend church regularly? Blah blah blah.
I answered everything politely, but at the same time, my mind was racing wildly, trying to come up with a way to get them the hell out of here. They finally left when they convinced me to take a copy of The Book of Mormon, telling me they would come back to discuss it with me. Shoot me.

[A little back story is required here:
In high school, I briefly talked to a boy (and I say boy because he was almost 2 years younger than me) who was Mormon. He was sweet, silly, funny, and awkward in his own way. His parents were strict, and guess what? His mother f-ing hated me. HATED ME. Actually, that is putting it pretty mildly. One night we were sitting in his driveway talking when his mother asked that we come inside. So we went to the family room, and continued talking. Seriously, TALKING. This boy was young, and I was cautious, since I had my heart trampled on several times in the last year or so. So, during the course of our conversation, he leans over and kisses me, out of the blue. Sparks, I tell you. Also? His mother walks in. Gives him a stern look, won't even look in my direction, and leaves the room. He leaves, and comes back a few minutes later to tell me I have to leave. And not ever come back. And OMG, his mother doesn't like me because I am Catholic, corrupt, and just kissed his son.
We hardly talked after that. I felt like a total WHORE for letting him kiss me. Thanks, religion. Thanks, MORMONS. Sheesh. (And yes, I realize that I can't label alllllll Mormons as asshats because his mother was an asshat, but sheesh. )]

So, yeah, I don't really know how to handle me some Mormons (no offense, if there are any Mormons reading this).

A few weeks go by. I forget about them and their book. I was dating my now-husband at the time, and if you know him at all, you know he doesn't put up with shit. So one day the doorbell rings, and I peek out my bedroom blinds to see who it is. It's the Mormon guys. I frantically whisper the entire situation to now-husband, and he tells me he will take care of it.

As I lie on the kitchen floor, as quiet as can be, he 'takes care of it'. He tells them that I am at work, that he doesn't think I opened the book at all, and hands it back to them. He then tells them that they are welcome to go visit me at work. They fall right into that trap, and ask where I work. He proceeds to tell them that I am a stripper, and work at some titty bar in Dallas. He even starts to give them directions to the imaginary place!
Dead silence for a few seconds.
I wish I could have seen the looks on their faces.
He then tells them that they are welcome to go up to my place of employment and pray for me and 'all those other lost souls'. Then he closes the door.
I waited a good minute before laughing my head off.
They never came back.
I am soooo going to hell, aren't I?


Kinda Like a Big Deal*

So last week I mentioned that I was going to a book signing this week, and I was super-excited about it. I am, still, in fact. If you look over to the sidebar on the right ----------> , I have a little area about books. I am not good about updating it like I should, but let me tell you, I wouldn't leave a book on my list if it wasn't worth reading.
About two months ago, I ordered How to Be Lost by Amanda Eyre Ward. I was so excited to read it, yet...it sat on my counter for a few weeks because school stuff got in the way. I couldn't resist any longer, and read more than half of it in one afternoon, between my two classes. I actually thought about skipping my afternoon class to continue reading it; it was that good.
I can't do the book justice by writing a review.....but it's a heartful story about a woman who goes on a journey to find her long-lost sister, a sister that disappeared when she was only 5 years old. The family is torn apart by it; the two remaining sisters have a thicket of guilt crammed in the middle of their relationship. The story is suspenseful, humorous, and heartbreaking. I don't want to tell you much because I am one of those people that LOVES to be surprised in a book (think: My Sister's Keeper & The Myth of You & Me, both brilliant, on my bookshelf, & in my heart).

When I got to the end of the book, I actually threw it across the room. I was upset because I wanted to know more. My husband told me to email the author and ask her for more. I laughed, but!!-Lucky for me (I hope), Amanda addresses the ending of the story in the Reader's Guide, stating that she cut out several hundred pages in the final draft of the story, and she can tell readers what happened to the characters.

This evening, Amanda will be doing a book signing at Legacy Books in Plano. When I found out, I was all "SQUEEEEE!" and my husband was all ".....", until I told him I am totally going to ask her about the characters in the book, and then he was all "oh" (Yeah, he's not much of a book whore like me, but I guess I'll keep him). I am hoping I don't look like a nervous groupie when (if) I meet her. I am in awe of her storytelling capabilities, and also? I feel a bit of a kindred spirit, only because I've had a novel growing in my head for the past 5 or 6 years, and omg, she actually published 4 awesome books, and could that possibly be me one day?
I started Forgive Me last week, and let my mother borrow Sleep Toward Heaven, so I can't speak for either of them yet. I'm totally buying Love Stories in this Town today, and going to try to finish all 3 before my internship starts June 1st. I'll tell you all about them when I'm done. Until then, you should pick up How To Be Lost. Make time to get lost in a book for a few hours. You won't regret it.

*By Clipse & Kanye West (Not trying to steal Jonniker's cool way of titling posts with songs, but omg, this song is stuck in my head, and the title fits the situation, so, yeah. Thanks, Jonniker-you rock! ) (Also? Give the song a few minutes. It seriously can get stuck in your head when you are working out, right about 1:03. Also? He says alligator souffle, and that just makes me giggle.)


Parent FAIL (and it wasn't me this time!!)*

The other night while at the grocery store, [and by 'we' I mean my husband actually went with my girl and I. That is news all on it's own! When it was just me & him, before my girl, he would go with me on a regular basis, and it was fun to buy too many things together. Then...well hell, I don't know. I guess the honeymoon was over, he came to his senses ("WTF? I don't know any husbands who go to the grocery store with their dorky wives! F- this!"), and stopped going with me. The downside to this: I have no one to blame when I spend $100 on snacks & frozen burritos. The upside? I could go down every damn aisle at a pace similiar to a normal human being's, not Speedracer speed. But I digress...], my girl was particularly whiny. I was so relieved that she was doing this in front of her dad, so he could see that I am not exaggerating when I say she's bringing me to the edges of insanity with her whiny, demanding phase. However, I was at the edge of insanity by the time we left the store, which isn't good. Apparently, so was he (again, not good) because this is what happened:

My girl: "I want this" Holding up a pair of Ipod earphones at the check-out.
Me: "Honey, you don't even have an Ipod"
G: (cue whiny voice) "I want an Ipod! Why don't I have an Ipod? Can I have an Ipod?"
Me: "Honey, I don't even have an Ipod. You've got enough fun toys. Put it back."
G: (continue with whiny voice) "But mommmmmmmmm.....oh, can I have this?" Holding up a toy camera.

Me: "No, you have a real camera, remember?"

Hubby: "Put it back and come over here, please."

G: (whiny voice still going) "But Daddddddddddddd........I want something!"

Then she picks up some weird little toy that looks like a fuzzy worm.

G: "I want this! Paige has this! She has her own. Her mommy and daddy bought it for her. I wannnnt it!"

H: "Put it back. I don't care if her mommy & daddy bought it for her. They must love her more than we love you."


G: (whiny voice reaching epic proportions) "But....I WANT IT!"
I'm fuming, counting to ten, holding my breath, and trying not to lose my shit. I love the kid, dearly, with all that I am, but for.the.love.of.pete. make it stop.

I notice her walking away from us, holding the toy in her hands.
Me: "Honey, put it back. We aren't buying it. You can't have it unless we pay for it."

G: (serious tone, not whiny in the least) "I want it. Pay for it." She continues to walk away.
So then my husband does what all good parents would do (LMAO):
H: "We aren't buying it, so that means you are stealing it. And if you steal it, you go to jail."

G: "GO TO JAIL? The police are gonna come get me? But....will you come visit me in jail? Mommy? I'm going to jail????"
Cue uncontrollable crying that could break a serial killer's stone-cold heart, mixed with a little bit of whining, a lot of snot, and epic proportions of parental guilt.
As we walk out to the car & load the groceries, I keep giving my husband a combination of the evil eye & the wide eyed "Are-you-fucking-kidding-me-will-you-please-say-something??", to no avail. She keeps asking me if she's going to jail, if I will visit her, will the police be nice to her, and oh my god I'm going to jail?? I was having a hard time not laughing, seriously, until it continued.

We get home and she walks into the living room. She sees Daisy and takes the crying to a whole new level:

"But I will miss Daisy when I'm in jail. Can I please not go to jail?" Real, sad, gushing tears cover her face.
At that point, Daddy saved the day and explained everything to her so that she would understand the lesson. Also? I am pretty sure that if she ever does get arrested, both of us will bail her out because we would have a hard time not thinking back to this day. (Well, she would get one "Get out of jail free" card; I hope she never has to redeem that, but I can't give unlimited ones out without feeling like a true parent FAIL).
After she calmed down and got a healthy dose of loving from us, I started to worry that she might be getting sick because omg, she is never this whiny. I was exhausted afterwards. And although it wasn't me, I felt guilty and omg, who prepares us for this shit?

Help me out: Tell me your parent FAIL stories. Spread the guilt.

*I don't really feel like it was a parent FAIL, so much as a wake-up call for him to see just how she can bring you to the edge of parental insanity.


Music Lover Monday on Tuesday, because I suck (but not enough, according to "someone who shall remain nameless")

First, thanks for the suggestions about fighting the mosquitoes. I appreciate my peeps!

Next, I've got writer's block. I've got a ton of stuff to write about, but it's just not coming out. It's all globbed up in my head, and don't tell me glob isn't a word, because I say it is. Also, I just realized I had a Music Lover Monday post all ready, but didn't post it. You want to know what it was? (Say yes, because even if you say no, I'm about to tell you anyway).

I'm not sure why I like these guys, but I do. Maybe it's the interesting lyrics thrown in the middle of these snappy beats? Hell, I don't know. For all I know, you guys have heard of these guys, and it's nothing new to you. But anyway, The Dodos:

Anyway, I'm just going to blame my writer's block on my f-ed up sleep schedule (why does the dog have to wake me up 4 damn times between 2 and 6am? Why can't I go to bed before midnight? Why can't I get up to work out at 6:30am? Whyyyyyy???) and the fact that I chose to do another liquid cleanse and ohhh.myyyy.gahhhhhhh. I am so hungry. And bloated.

So, yeah, aren't you glad you stopped by here today?


Friday Filler (Also: I'm fighting those mosquitoes & I.WILL.WIN)

So, let's see..how can I bore you for the next minute & a half?

Well, first off, my final grades are still not posted for this semester. It's killing me, the not knowing. I'm pretty sure I will check the stupid website 487,129 times between now and, say, Saturday.


So after my girl got unbelievably swollen & beat-up looking from two mosquito bites, I spent a good deal of time on Google. (And I realize those pictures might not look all that bad to you, but both of those were taken within 20 minutes of being bitten, and she got worse, much worse. We are talking eye swollen shut, black & blue all the way around her eye, for days. We are talking entire foot swollen & purple, and then bruised for 3 or 4 days after the fact.)
After talking to her doctor again, we agree she is medically allergic to mosquito bites. I want to avoid pumping Zyrtec into her body every day of her life. I want to avoid spraying DEET on her every day. I do not want to have to avoid being outside, going to the park, playing ball, playing in the sandbox. It's just not fair to her. We are lucky enough that she hasn't been bitten on her neck, by her mouth, on her lip. Can you imagine if her throat closed up? I don't even want to think about it.
Anyway, I want to fight back. I want to try some natural things, in addition to the f-ing chemical warfare I've already scheduled to occur next week. So I spent 14568 hours on Google, looking at alternatives. Suggestions include planting peppermint, marigolds, rosemary, catnip, eucalyptus, & citronella grass in your yard. There's also something called a mosquito plant that you can supposedly only buy online, that I might try as well. I already have some peppermint & rosemary in my backyard, but I'm going to make sure I buy all of them, and put them in planters/pots by all my doors, so the little fuckers think twice before trying to enter my house.

Also, there's this eucalyptus lotion that supposedly pisses them off. I'm buying it. I've heard sandalwood lotion helps piss them off too; seeking it out as we speak.

So, dear Internet, I tell you all this to ask: do you have any tried & true things that repel the blood-sucking fuckers? Also, how about things you use to stop the pain, itch, and intense swelling? Oh wait, not everyone has that reaction. So far, we've been giving her Zyrtec, motrin for the swelling & pain, and putting lots of ice packs on. I've also made a paste out of baking soda & water to cover the bites with, but she isn't so happy about this one.


Do you know what I cannot stand? When the help* does the laundry & "accidentally" puts two pair of dark jean shorts in with the light-colored clothing because then all the light-colored clothing comes out looking dirtier than it did when it went in, since now it all has this light-blue tint to it. I mean, I really enjoy my workout bra smelling fresh, but I really don't like it looking f-ing dingy. Ditto for my husband's socks & my cute white tank.

Do you know what else I can't stand? When "someone" forgets to leave a towel by the shower, so when I get out of my nice warm shower, I end up having to freeze my butt off walking to the linen cabinet to get a towel, and then on my way back over to the shower, I slip on the water footprints I made, and catch myself on the wall, but only after my foot goes in the trashcan & a toothpick gets stuck between my toes.

Yeah, good times.


Has anyone seen Damon Wayans Junior? He was on Jimmy Fallon last night, and wow is he a cutie! He does look like his dad, and omg, all the Wayans sound alike & have similar facial expressions, but where have they been hiding this sweet guy?** And now I'm thinking of them in White Chicks & cracking my ass up.

*By "the help", I mean me.
**And that reminds me, The Bloggess asked recently who we would have sex with that isn't exactly a hottie. I said Rob Schneider & Steve Carell, but HELLO?? How could I forget the Wayans? Go check out the responses, as long as you aren't faint of heart!


The Power of the Mommy hormone

This was emailed to me today, and I just couldn't resist posting it. (Thanks, Nicole!)


Where I digress & digress & .....

Right now I should be working. On what? Hell, I don't know, but I'm pretty sure I should be working while at work. But, instead, I am trying to catch up on people's posts (except Alan's because I don't think I will EVER catch up, since he posts like 12 times a day). I'm also doing that thing where you read a post, and someone's comment catches your eye, so you click over to their blog, and then you start reading their posts, and then another comment catches your eye, and then.....it's been like 45 minutes and you don't even know how you got where you are!
Maybe this is why I don't ever catch up on my Google Reader!

But I digress.

I've got 21 days before the summer semester starts. 21 days before my internship starts, before I'm stuck with the alleged 'professor from hell', the one that molds the easiest class into the most dreaded, difficult, beatdown of a class. And to make matters worse, I have her class on Wednesday nights, and during the summer, the classes are 3 hours & 20 minutes long, and she never lets her class out early. So what does this mean? I will be hungry, I will be crabby, & I will be Tweeting as much as possible in class just to survive it every week.

Alas, (by the way, who the hell says 'alas' anymore? Seriously, unless you are writing a novel set in another century, right?) I decided to go to grad school, so I can't really bitch about the negatives, can I? (OOOooooo, yes I can, and I will!!!)

I digressed again.

In the next 21 days, I'm going out for drinks with a couple of friends so we can celebrate being done with our Spring semester. Then, I'm embarking on another liquid cleanse. Then, I'm going to a book signing, and omg, I am really excited about this one! In fact, sooo excited, I'm just going to post about it separately (you are just dying to know, aren't you? Pffft). Also...

I seriously need to catch up on my DVR. I still haven't watched the entire inaugaration, for cripe's sake! And the entire season of Grey's Anatomy sits there, between the entire season of Private Practice & 56 episodes of Reno 911, all calling my name. I shit you not: I haven't watched this season's Grey's Anatomy, because I never finished last season! So, in the next 21 days, I swear I am going to rent Season 3 and catch up! If not, my husband will surely delete all my shows. He gets all annoyed that I have used 45 of the 784,539 available recordable hours on the DVR. It just gets under his skin, and it makes me giggle.

Oh, and speaking of shows! Can I please complain about Prison Break?? Now, I will never complain about the glorious eye candy on that show, but I am just so damn sick and tired of the confusion. Oh for fuck's sake, can we just get on with it!? Can you just find this SCYLLA thing and why don't you blow up that bitch of a 'mother', along with the scary bald-headed guy, & THAT CREEP T-bag (which makes me think of 'tit-bag') and omg, quit with the serious staring, will ya??? I realize this show is ending soon. I realize I will miss the sexy eye candy, and the d.r.a.m.a., but right this instant, I just yell at the TV every time I watch an episode.

I digressed, but now you know what I will be doing Friday night, after I go out for drinks. Thank goodness for my DVR.

Other shit on TV annoying me right now: Celebrity Apprentice. I don't watch it, but I can't even stand the commercials for it. Joan Rivers? Her fake face? Trump with his hideous facial expressions? Thank goodness that's over.

And can I talk about the shows I am loving right now? Dirty Jobs never gets old. Nor does The Deadliest Catch. Oh, and Medium.

All that digression has got me sleepy. And snacky.

Happy Tuesday!


Enough energy to run a marathon (down the hallway)

Recently, my dear friend Stephanie (who is pregnant and due in August with a boy! Squeeeeee!) and her husband came to visit. We intended to play Wii all night, but we were lazy and appareantly we are old, because we did nothing but watch TV and the girls.

My girl & Micah ran up and down the hallway, in and out of the living room, yelling, squealing, and laughing. They played, they argued, they giggled, and honestly, it was a joy to hear their cute little voices all night.
Here's what the last 10 minutes of the visit looked like, while us adults were yawning and begging for a pillow to rest our heads on:

The wrestling match ended when we pulled them both off the couch and made them say their sweet goodbyes.
Ahhh, to have that kind of energy at 11:00 at night.


Missing him still

The last few nights, when going through the night time rituals with my girl, she has told me this:

"Mommy, I really miss Kooter. I want to see him in heaven."

And she cries.

I feel bad. I know that this is an early lesson in learning to live in spite of a loss. A lesson in loving sight-unseen. I want to take the pain from her, but know that I can't, nor should I, really.

She is coping well:
She gives lots of attention to Daisy. We talk about Kooter, how we love him, miss him, how he is still in our hearts, how he can visit us in our dreams, how he is probably happy & at peace, playing fetch with an endless supply of tennis balls.

The last few mornings, when I go into her room, she has moved her pictures around. She has framed pictures of her Monkey Matt, her Aunt Angel, and 2 pictures each of Daisy & Kooter. They are all on her nightstand, but when I go in her room, one of Kooter is on her dresser, facing her bed.

This morning, not only was that picture there again, but the other picture of him, a close-up of his silly face when he was a puppy, was in her bed with her. Also? A tennis ball.

When I asked her about the tennis ball, her simple response choked me up:

"I wanted to play fetch with Kooter if he visited me in my dreams."

My sweet girl, if only you knew what you do to me.


Music Lover Monday

This new love is courtesy of my sister, who told me about this band this weekend. They have been featured on Grey's Anatomy and Friday Night Lights (SWOOOOOOOON-Taylor Kitsch, who places Tim Riggins) (An aside: Please check out his yummy, sexy, goodness below: )

Ahem. Sorry. I was supposed to be talking about the MUSIC, not the guy that makes me drool and feel like I'm in high school all over again, huh? Okay, moving right along:

They are The Rescues.

I really REALLY like them. After I pay my tuition for the summer, I might need to invest some of that extra loan $ in a hefty itunes credit.