Thursday, July 31, 2008
But there's so much more to him.
I met Shaun in January of 2001. Steve and I had started dating, for the second time, and he invited me to join him and his buddies for Guitar Night. They had one night a week where they all got together and played guitar and ate and drank. There were a couple of non-guitar players, Ms. Heather included, who sang or shook shakers or just curled up quietly in the corner and listened. On this particular night, Shaun and McP were the only attendees. And since they were just so impressed by my singing, I became a regular with the group and saw them every week.
In the course of my six year relationship with Steve, Shaun became one of my best friends from the group. He, Steve, McP and I went on a few three day weekends together and I probably saw him more often than anyone else. He moved back to Boston for a year, but when he returned to Seattle, we all picked up right where we had left off.
I had always considered Shaun a good friend, but I never knew how good of a friend until he suddenly became my family.
Two days after the break up, I called and asked if I could stay with him for a few days. He said I could stay as long as I needed. And he meant it. He cleaned out a drawer in the bathroom for me and gave me his spare set of keys. He would text me throughout the day and ask if I had eaten anything recently. He would drag me out of the apartment in the evenings when I was curled up on the couch, staring glassy- and teary-eyed at the TV.
When I felt I had burdened him enough, and I went to stay with Jessica for a few weeks, I offered to give his spare keys back. He said no. He said since he traveled so much, I should just hang onto them in case I needed to do laundry or just wanted to crash there one night.
When I finally moved into my own apartment, I again offered to give his keys back. He again said no. Since I was having such laundry stress, he told me I could come over and do my laundry at his place anytime. (And in November, when The Fiasco happened, he started texting again. "Consider this your daily check in from Chicago! Eaten anything today?")
I spent Thanksgiving day and New Year's Eve with Shaun. He sat and watched football with me almost every Sunday, even though he doesn't give a shit about football and would spend the whole afternoon talking about how great Brady was, even though the Patriots weren't playing. He even talked me out of extending my West Virginia trip so that we could have a few three day weekends this summer.
Then, in April, I met Todd. Who, coincidentally, has a ton of things in common with Shaun (theater, graphic novels, music) When I told Shaun, he said, "You can't date him until I meet him." Well, Shaun was still traveling a lot, so after a month or so, he changed his tune. "You can't move in with him until I meet him." They finally met at dinner earlier this month. And I think he approves.
I went over to Shaun's this past Tuesday night, and as I left, I again asked if he wanted his spare set of keys back.
This time he said, "Sure". And I cried a little.
It was such a turning point. I don't need his keys anymore. And he knows it, so he took them back. It's like giving up a security blanket, or the pretty pink pills. I'm okay now. I have security (and laundry privileges) with Todd, but Shaun will always be my big brother. There has never been a doubt in my mind about his loyalty or his intentions. I knew I could let down my guard with him and he would still be a true friend. Oh, there were other men comforting poor Raechelle last summer, but I was way too broken to realize that they had ulterior motives. Shaun never had an ulterior motive.
(Or maybe he did. He's a guy. I'm cute. And was drunk. A lot.)
He never crossed that line. And when I confessed to him the Ginormous Bad Decision of 2007, he just looked at me and said, "Wow. You really screwed up. But you know what, Raechelle? Everybody does. Don't let anyone judge you because they've all screwed up, too." And then he let me cry on his chest.
So, raise those glasses!
To Shaun! One of my best friends. My big brother. My lifeboat.
I love ya, man.
Our company picnic is today, and it's Hawaiian themed, so we have been given permission to wear blue jeans (oh THANK YOU THANK YOU!) and a Hawaiian shirt, if we so desire (nothankyou). Rumor has it, there will be ping pong and mini golf this year, in addition to the standard tradition of a cover band. People are in holiday mode and one of our techs is passing out leis and hairclips with flowers.
My lei is peach and yellow, but it clashes with my thick, black sweater that I'm wearing because it's only 55 degrees outside and only about 65 degrees in my office.
I really do love Seattle. Really.
But come one. Just one month of summer. Please? One consistent month? That's all I need.
Maybe the clouds will part by noon and it will appear summery when I head down to get a hamburger. And the Blue Angels are in town for Seafair, so we may catch a glimpse of them practicing. That's summery.
Please send warm and sunny thoughts.
Wednesday, July 30, 2008
Monday, July 28, 2008
I had lunch with Ms. Traveler on Saturday. It's always good to hang out with her. She knows everything about everything and never fails to, at some point, compliment me on my writing. Seeing as how she's a Professional Writer, it's always a huge confidence booster. And I walk away inspired and motivated to find a writing job. But then I get overwhelmed and discouraged because I don't have an English degree like so many people are requiring and well.....I end up blogging and whining to you guys.
Thanks for listening.
After lunch, I ran some errands, did some dishes, paid some bills. Then just sat on my couch for an hour flipping through channels and looking through the new Ikea catalog. It was nice to just enjoy my apartment.
That evening, I headed over to Todd's to make dinner and watch some movies. And I have to say, I LOVED 50 First Dates. So warm and fuzzy. I'm a sucker for warm and fuzzy. I'm putting it right up there with When Harry Met Sally... Yes, THAT warm and fuzzy.
We also watched Airplane, which, GASP, I had never seen. Big surprise. Funny, but like with Star Wars, I missed the curve. At least I know what Todd and the kids are quoting now when they say, "A hospital? What is it? It's a big building with patients, but that's not important right now." Now I'm one of the cool kids.
Sunday, after sleeping in until 9am (I know!) I got on a teeny weeny cleaning bender.
I washed up some dishes and wiped down the counter, then just meant to wipe off the stove. There was something that looked suspiciously like dry Coco Wheats everywhere, probably from when Tyler cooked breakfast. (I'm guessing that's where the hunk of butter on the cabinet door came from, too. Teenagers are fun.)
But a simple wipedown turned into taking off all of the burner pans and knobs to soak and 409ing the shit out of the stovetop. Kayleigh was sitting at the kitchen table, playing solitaire while I was doing all of this and she (very seriously) said the funniest thing yet.
"A house without messes must be your own personal hell."
She's quick, that one.
After the cleaning bender, we headed out to lunch and a movie, where migraine number four made a brief appearance. It started with the squigglies on the drive, and progressed into the fork-in-the-back-of-the-eye pain once at the restaurant. I downed four Advil and Todd rubbed a pressure point in the muscle between my thumb and index finger, which actually seemed to ward off the worst of it.
Seeing a movie that afternoon was probably not the best plan, but I figured if my head started to hurt too badly, I would just lay against Todd, close my eyes and snooze alittle. But it never really progressed into the normal oh-gawd-please-just-cut-my-head-off headache. I still have a bit of pain today, but not enough to warrant turning off the lights or wearing earplugs.
And I'm glad it didn't get too bad because WALL-E was just fantastic. (You have to watch some of the videos on the site. HAVE TO.)
Holy crap, Pixar can do no wrong. And the movies just keep getting better and better. They're so good at conveying expression and emotion in the smallest amount of detail. And, although the movie is cute and funny, there is a very clear message to be had. If we keep up this pace, earth will be uninhabitable and humans will become brainwashed blobs of goo.
It really is a heartwarming film. Really.
Once home, Todd and I rested our eyes for a bit. What, old, you say? No, not old. Just soaking up some cuddle time before I had to leave. After such a craptastic week, it was so nice to just curl up with him and be happy.
I got home relatively early so I puttered around my place and watched some TV before heading to bed at 9:30pm.
Okay. Maybe I am old.
Friday, July 25, 2008
The ring that Todd gave me.
Pretty little Celtic knots.
I've gotten a few emails that all ask the same question:
"Why the hell haven't you blogged about this!?"
Well, faithful reader, I'm a visual kinda girl. I wanted to wait until I could get a photo when the ring wasn't so tight that my finger turned blue. That just killed the beauty of the whole thing.
And it's been a rough week in RaTodd-land. Or Taechelle-land. I'm still workin' on it.
On life's highway of love, there are speedbumps. Sometimes those bumps are roadkill, but sometimes they're just speedbumps. Speedbumps slow things down for a reason. Speedbumps make you almost come to a complete stop and ask, "What the......?" This is a good thing. In hindsight, of course. In pre-hindsight, you don't see the benefit. You just think, "Oh crap, I hate dating."
But then you talk it out and the weight lifts and the barrier of anger you had up dissolves and suddenly all you want to do is latch onto that person for the rest of the night.
Unfortunately, you've decided to sleep in your own apartment. On a Friday night. Because your bills are piling up and your bathroom is filthy and you have a friend who really needs you on Saturday. So, you make sacrifices and tell your boyfriend you'll see him tomorrow night.
But you smile every time you look at your pretty silver ring.
Thursday, July 24, 2008
The Ex used to get frustrated with me because my excuse for not educating myself in politics was that it was too overwhelming. I would rather just focus on keeping my little bubble of a life happy. Why depress myself with issues and topics I didn't feel I could do anything thing about? I just kept my head down, tried to stay under the radar and waited to die.
Not the healthiest way to live life, I know. I'm not so bleak about it anymore. Now, I vote. I read up on things. I have an opinion when the topic comes up at dinner. Rarely do I get all ruffled.
Oh, but I got ruffled this morning. Good-n-ruffled. (Ooh. My German name.)
I listen to 103.7 The Mountain every morning when I'm getting ready for work, and then on my drive. I love those guys. Marty Riemer and Jodi Brothers are like the best friends I don't have. And this morning, they mentioned that Washington state may soon require high school students to pass algebra II in order to graduate. And I immediately got a pit in my stomach. Then Jodi said exactly what I was thinking:
"I would have never graduated high school if algebra II were required back then."
Amen, Jodi. Amen.
Then Marty smarted off with EVERYONE should take algebra II and it was soooo important and girls can do math just as well as boys and then I turned off the radio. I love him death, but sometimes he gets a little opinionated.
I've written about my trouble with math a few times. It took me three semesters to pass algebra I in high school. It was brutal. Once I actually got out of algebra I, I went straight into informal geometry. Not regular geometry. But "informal".
This is a square.
This is a rectangle.
Explain the difference.
Uh......One side is longer?
Congrats, Raechelle! You've passed informal geometry!
At graduation, I stood in line with 135 other seniors, just minutes from walking across the football field to get that friggin' diploma, and watched as the principle literally pulled people out of line. They finished up our final grades THE EVENING OF GRADUATION. And if you failed, you got yanked out of line.
Scariest moment of my life.
I ended up passing with a D.
Oh, but the fun that was known as math was not over! I had to take the ACT exam - the "informal" version of the SATs.
Failed the math portion three times. THREE TIMES. Oh, I excelled in the reading and writing. I can write and babble about anything. Hence, these long, rambling posts.
But throw numbers at me with a letter here and there and I dry heave for an hour.
They finally let me enter college (bless their hearts) as long as I took pre-algebra. They were hellbent on cramming that stuff down my throat. I took this class, for six weeks during the summer, four days a week, for five hours. Algebra. Four days a week. For five hours. And by golly, I passed. No grade. Just passed. Good enough.
Okay, fall semester. My classes were algebra, psychology and ballet (needed to have so many credits to be considered "full time"). I excelled at ballet. I was first at the bar after three weeks. Psychology wasn't too bad; the teacher was enthusiastic and held my attention. I think I passed most of my tests.
Second semester. Algebra. Dropped out (the teacher showed up for class three out of five days).
Third semester. Algebra. Failed.
At which point I said, "Screw this."
Then came business school. No algebra. I learned how to balance a ledger, use a 10-key and type 80 words a minute. Much more my speed.
The point is, I would have never graduated if algebra II was required when I was in high school. My school (which will remain nameless since I'm about to badmouth it) had no desire to see us succeed. Our math classes were taught by the gym coaches (yes, I know some gym coaches have the smarts to teach math. Mine did not.) I remember asking Mrs. Hill if she could help me with a problem and she responded with, "Well, if you don't understand by now, you're just not getting it." My parents were never good at math, so they couldn't help me. And we couldn't afford to pay a tutor.
Now, as my disclaimer, I'm not putting 100% of the blame on my teachers. I was not a very motivated student. I did what I had to do to get out of there, and even considered dropping out my junior year and just taking the GED.
And I do remember my folks finding a tutor for me in sixth grade. Ms. Cardwell. She was very patient with me and I think I was probably making good progress. Then my brother picked me up at school one day and they started making googly eyes at each other and then they started dating and she went with us to a pool party (I remember she wore a lot of pink) and then they broke up and well, suddenly I didn't have to stay after school for tutoring anymore.
So I blame my brother, in addition to my teachers, for my math deficiency.
From what I hear, Washington thinks students should be required to pass algebra II so they can keep up with the education standards in other countries. In plain english - our kids ain't as smart as other kids. And I think that's all well and good.
Just don't suddenly force high school students to magically pass algebra II. Won't happen. They need to be prepared for it, starting in elementary school. They can't just do it on their own. Teachers have to be able to teach it to students like me who just don't get it. Parents have to have the time and money to get tutors for their kids who just don't get it.
I'm so glad I'm done with the whole high school thing. Although, if I could go back for a day, knowing what I know now......oh boy. I would be the coolest chick in school.
I'd probably still fail algebra though.
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
But come on, people.
Fish. Really? Eating the dead skin off your feet?
What goes through a person's mind when they're asked if they would like the regular pedicure or the fish pedicure? What is the logic that makes them say, "Oh, why, the FISH PEDICURE, of course! It's only the best for MY tootsies!"
One word for ya: Ew.
Fish and feet do not mix. I don't think there is any way to convince me. Go ahead. Leave a comment. Try to convince me. Dare ya.
Speaking of pedicures, looks like I'm being whisked off to California in a few weeks! And you know how I love a good pamperin' to start my vacation off right. Gotta have pretty fingers and toes!
I may have to skip eating out for a couple of weeks. Habitude has upped their prices again.
As a 1930s wife, I am
Kristin, maybe you should have someone else take the quiz for you. It seems that maybe we do not see ourselves very accurately.
Monday, July 21, 2008
And I am now rewarding myself with biscuits and gravy for breakfast. And bacon. Gotta have the bacon.
I could recap the weekend for you, but why? Todd does it so well? Thanks, sweetie.
(I'm really not using him.)
It was a funfilled weekend. Pretty houses, babies, ex boyfriends, meeting new friends, movies, cleaning, cleaning and more cleaning.....all good things.
Also, who puts onions in gravy? Ick. I've hit my biscuits and gravy wall.
I'll post again when I have all of my coffee in me and can form better sentences......
Friday, July 18, 2008
Because I have seen Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog. Finally.*
Don't know what this is? Here.
If you are a Buffy fan (and if you're a fan, you know who Buffy is so I don't have to type "the Vampire Slayer"), this is a must see. If you're a Joss Whedon fan, it's a must see. If you are a Neil Patrick Harris or Nathan Fillion fan, oh, you must!
*Sorry Todd. Just couldn't wait for ya.
And today, I'm just mad. Scowling, furrowed, don't-even-come-in-here-and-chat-with-me mad. I don't care how much money you're willing to put in the bucket.
And, oh, don't EVEN THINK of popping in here to ask me where my boss it. I will throw my stapler at you, I mean it.
I even pitched a tiny tantrum in front of the big boss lady. The first one in the three years I've been here. She asked me to change a catering order for next because "someone" (don't know who) thinks pastries are just too unhealthy, so we need fruit and yogurt.
Oh, for cryin' out loud.
This, after I spent 30 minutes on a conference call with two other assistants trying to get a reoccurring meeting that involves doctors (shoot me) scheduled through the end of the year. I was already irritated and then to be told to do something like change the food because it's just too unhealthy....well. My pen accidentally flew out of my hand and my pad of paper accidentally slid across my desk.
The big boss lady said, "Now you know what I deal with."
Maybe I should take a nap at lunch.
Or just drink lunch......
Thursday, July 17, 2008
Normally, I don't mind visitors. A quick pop in, a "Hi, howya doin'?" is great. Maybe even a sit down, "Here's why I'm upset..." is okay. It's not written in my job description, but I know that people think I'm here for their venting pleasure. And most of the time I don't mind. It goes with the territory.
The problem is, there are some folks who don't have a lot going on and don't understand that I actually DO have a lot going on (despite my posting during the day. These short ones take all of 5 minutes). So I listen to them for a bit, but eventually, I have to just flat out say, "Okay, I gotta get back to work. Thanks for visiting. Buh-bye."
During one of these visits, I mentioned to my friend, who was sitting in my chair, that I needed to figure out how to make some extra money. Gas is going up, my parking is going up, groceries are going up.
But my pay is not going up.
He suggested that I rent out a portion of my spacious, green office. I said, "Hell, I could pay my rent just by charging people to sit in that chair."
And a lightbulb went off.
Todd asked what exactly a "session" was.
I replied, "I wear many hats at my job. Some of which I'm not at liberty to discuss."
Nose: Still a little clogged.
Teeth: Still throbbing. Ice cream for dinner was good, but only if I kept it on the right side of my mouth. I'll make a dentist appointment soon.
Gray hair: Not just confined to my head now.
WTF?! Nobody ever, EVER told me, a woman, that gray hair could appear in any place other than my head. Why do we not talk about these things? It would really help to alleviate the panic that you feel when you see that first one. The mind boggles for a minute. "What the hell.....? Nah, couldn't be......"
Lungs: I'm using my inhaler a couple times a day now. I still have that revving, asthmatic cough. Could be leftover cold, could be allergies. Who knows.
Wrists: still neurotic about them. My massage therapist did a full body thing yesterday (rather than just spending an hour on my back, like normal) and she started to do my forearms, starting at my wrists. And I almost hit her.
DO NOT touch the inside of my wrists. Under ANY circumstances. Or the inside of my elbows. I will go kung fu on your ass, I swear to gawd. And touch the backs of my knees at your own risk. Sometimes I'm okay with it, sometimes I'll kick you. It's a gamble.
Poor Todd. I think he has a chart on the back of his door. Neck: a-okay. Stomach: just don't jiggle it. Wrists: Raechelle hurts me. Feet: Only when Raechelle's had a lot of wine. Hands: a-okay.
Eyes/Head: Funny thing. I quit wearing my glasses. Completely. And I haven't had a headache in months. I put my glasses on for 30 minutes, just to test my theory. Head starts hurting. Does that mean my prescription is off? Or that I really don't need glasses and I should sue my optometrist? Either way, my head doesn't hurt anymore.
Overall, I would say B+.
Not too shabby for a 33 year old.
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
And what did he bring, you ask?
The man is allergic to shellfish and he brings sushi for lunch. That's love, baby.
We walked down to the lake, spread a blanket and had California rolls (dude, funny, since he's from Santa Cruz) and cucumber rolls. Then we just looked at the water and baked in the sunshine for an hour.
What a nice Wednesday.
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
Are any of my readers pilots? Could you please explain this phenomenon to me?
I'm thinking I may need a root canal. I've got a problem cavity that was filled the year I moved here and, although my dentist has taken out the bad filling and put in good filling, it's now throbbing pretty much regularly.
I've read what happens during a root canal. And I am none too happy about it. I may willingly give up my arm for the IV that will knock me out. And that's saying a lot.
I have a paper cut between my first and middle finger. Helluva place for a papercut. I may start applying for worker's comp for crap like this.
Warning: the sauce that comes on the veggie quesadilla at Tacos Guaymas is freakin' hot. If you don't do spicy (like me) maybe ask for them to leave it off. Much less painful. I will remember next time.
Also, when you go to their website, there's music. And there's no way to turn it off. And it's really annoying. Just FYI.
I would like to ask for some good juju, please.
There are changes coming on at work (things I dare not blog about) and some good juju would help me considerably. I'm not in jeopardy of losing my job, but there are "changes". Just work with me, okay?
The Ex and I spoke last weekend. It seems we will both be at Milo's first birthday party this Saturday, so we thought it would be a good idea to break the ice in advance, rather than in front of Milo. He's too young for that kind of drama.
He sounds good (the Ex, not Milo. Milo can't talk yet.) And happy. It was a nice chat. I'm looking forward to seeing him. We will have our significant others in tow as well, so maybe some positive juju on Saturday around 3pm would be a good idea, too. You know, if you're not doing anything.
My first name, Brenda, is after my aunt, who passed away very young.
My middle name, Raechelle, was after a woman my dad dated, but my mom changed up the spelling because although she didn't like the woman, she liked the name.
2. WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU CRIED?
July 4, at 7:45pm. Sitting on Granny's porch. I do that when I go to Nestorville.
3. DO YOU LIKE YOUR HANDWRITING?
4. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE LUNCH MEAT?
Um. Turkey. Maybe. If you twist my arm.
5. DO YOU HAVE KIDS?
No living creature has come out of my body.
6. IF YOU WERE ANOTHER PERSON WOULD YOU BE FRIENDS WITH YOU?
7. DO YOU USE SARCASM A LOT?
Ha. Do you even know me? No, no. I never use saracasm.
8. DO YOU STILL HAVE YOUR TONSILS?
9. WOULD YOU BUNGEE JUMP?
10. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE CEREAL?
Kashi Cinna-Raisin Crunch (or Froot Loops)
11. DO YOU UNTIE YOUR SHOES WHEN YOU TAKE THEM OFF?
Most of the time.
12. DO YOU THINK YOU ARE STRONG?
Emotionally? No. But people keep telling me differently.
13. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE ICE CREAM?
Oh, there's so many really. Mint chocolate chip, Ben & Jerry's Half Baked, strawberry....
14. WHAT IS THE FIRST THING YOU NOTICE ABOUT PEOPLE?
Their fingernails. Weird. I know.
15. RED OR PINK?
Both. Depends on if I'm feeling saucy or sweet.
16. WHAT IS THE LEAST FAVORITE THING ABOUT YOURSELF?
My tummy. It's baby fat. I'm sure of it.
17. WHO DO YOU MISS THE MOST?
My brother. We don't really talk much anymore.18. DO YOU WANT EVERYONE TO SEND THIS BACK TO YOU?
Not really. Just post it on your blog.
19. WHAT COLOR SHOES ARE YOU WEARING?
Black. Big surprise.
20. WHAT WAS THE LAST THING YOU ATE?
A homemade chocolate chip cookie from a really sweet doctor.
21. WHAT ARE YOU LISTENING TO RIGHT NOW?
It's on pause, but my "Irish Boys" playlist.
22. IF YOU WHERE A CRAYON, WHAT COLOR WOULD YOU BE?
Uh..periwinkle. Just because I like the word "periwinkle".
23. FAVORITE SMELLS?
Ah....fresh cut grass, Coty Musk perfume, cooking onions or garlic, Pledge, roses.
24. WHO WAS THE LAST PERSON YOU TALKED TO ON THE PHONE?
Marc, from Purchasing. He always answers calls from me by singing "Did you ever know that you're my hero....?"
25. DO YOU LIKE THE PERSON WHO SENT THIS TO YOU?
26. FAVORITE SPORTS TO WATCH?
Well, duh. Football! (four weeks to go!)
27. HAIR COLOR?
Brown (with lots of silver "highlights")
28. EYE COLOR?
Green (which, with the brown hair, apparently makes me Welsh......and hot.)
29. DO YOU WEAR CONTACTS?
Oh, gawd no! I'd rather go blind than stick something in my eye every morning! Ewww!
30. FAVORITE FOOD?
Again, so many....sushi, chocolate covered cherries, chocolate covered peanuts, chocolate covered sushi....
31. SCARY MOVIES OR HAPPY ENDINGS?
32. LAST MOVIE YOU WATCHED?
33. WHAT COLOR SHIRT ARE YOU WEARING?
Black. What's new?
34. SUMMER OR WINTER?
35. HUGS OR KISSES?
Both! Who could choose?
36. FAVORITE DESSERT?
Favorite? Ha. Just hand it over, bucko.
37. MOST LIKELY TO RESPOND?
I didn't send this to anyone, so whoever reads it and posts it on their blog.
38. LEAST LIKELY TO RESPOND?
Those who don't do these.
39. WHAT BOOK ARE YOU READING NOW?
STILL trying to finish Obama's book. Love him to death, but it's just not engaging me.
Now, I bought "How To Talk To A Widower" in the airport in Pitt, and finished it before I landed in Seattle. A very fast and entertaining read. Not as sad as the title would lead you to believe.
40. WHAT IS ON YOUR MOUSE PAD?
I have no mousepad. I'm one of those mousing snobs who uses a trackball. No mousepad required. But if I did have a mousepad, it would proably have a picture of a cute kitty on it.
41. WHAT DID YOU WATCH ON TV LAST NIGHT?
Ten minutes of the Simpsons. Then I left the house.
42. FAVORITE SOUND?
The creek at Granny's. And a really heavy rain.
43. ROLLING STONES OR BEATLES?
Eh. Rolling Stones.
44. WHAT IS THE FARTHEST YOU HAVE BEEN FROM HOME?
New York. Pathetic, I know.
45. DO YOU HAVE A SPECIAL TALENT?
Oh, you betcha. I can make my tongue split. It impresses all the boys.
46. WHERE WERE YOU BORN?
Morgantown, WV. At the WVU Hospital.
47. WHOSE ANSWERS ARE YOU LOOKING FORWARD TO GETTING BACK?Nobody's. I look forward to comments, though.
Monday, July 14, 2008
Right. Got back to Seattle Thursday night and was picked up by Todd and two very excited children. I think they missed me.
And found this photo on my camera, which I had left behind.
Ruby got a bath. I don't know if the kids helped, but they sure look proud of someone's work, don't they?
Swigged some good cough syrup, updated Todd on the trip, and went to sleep. And slept really hard. Finally.
Then came Friday. My very last vacation day.
Todd, Kayleigh and I got some Starbucks, shopped around a little, then K and I came to my apartment to switch out vacation clothes for Seattle clothes. Then Todd and I spent some quality adult time (sans children) that night.
And I got a call from Daniela! She and Sergio were in town for a few days, so we made a plan to meet up Saturday evening.
Saturday was completely unproductive. It was beautiful out, but Todd and I couldn't seem to get motivated to do much of anything. And it was wonderful.
That evening, we had dinner with D & S.
Jonah & Daniela
Oliver (aka Diego) & Sergio
Kayleigh was enjoying baby time as well.
That evening, we were all tired, so we lounged and watched "Batman Begins" since I haven't seen it and we're going to see "The Dark Knight" when it comes out. My opinion? I don't think I'm a big Christian Bale fan. Something about him. And I think I'm so used to Tim Burton's Batman movies (over the top and comic book like), that this one just seemed boring. I'm still looking forward to "The Dark Knight" though.
Sunday, I had every intention of leaving Todd's early so I could spend some time in my own space. I haven't been home in over a week and I miss my space. I miss my smells. And you know how sensitive I am about smells.
The word "hyperosmia" is one of the top google searches that leads to my blog. There are a lot of people out there who want to know what this word means. And when you google the word, my blog comes up on the second page of results.
And one of the other top searches that leads to my blog are the phrases "alone vs lonely" or "how to deal with being alone". There are quite a few people who are wondering how to deal with loneliness. And to these people, I give you a hug. It sucks being lonely. But it gets better. Reach out to your friends who keep calling and emailing. They wouldn't offer to comfort you if they didn't want to. I tried the whole don't-inconvenience-anyone-when-I'm-sad-because-that-makes-me-dependent and that was just plain stupid. It just made life worse. My friends offered to come over and comfort me and I kept saying "No, no, I'll be fine. Really."
But you know what? As soon as I just started giving in and letting them comfort me, it got better. And it doesn't make you dependent. It doesn't make you weak. It makes you strong. Because you have the courage to ask for help. Sounds weird, but it's true. Trust me.
Where was I?
Oh yes. I had every intention of going home early yesterday, but after brunch with Todd's brother and his wife, a nap was much needed (freakin' crows squawking at 6am). Then I got all clingy and cuddly and well, I finally left at 6:30pm.
Clingy and cuddly is a good thing. I have quite the wall up. Todd and I are both well aware of this. I've been kicked in the gut a few times this past year (and I haven't blogged about it so you'll just have to take my word for it) by men who said all the right things and promised all the right things, just when I was broken enough to believe it. My friends told me it was wrong. They tried to warn me. But I didn't listen because I wanted so very badly to believe that it was right.
So, I have a wall up. And I'm hesitant to trust my instincts, because they've let me down in a major way recently. But little by little, the bricks are falling out of the wall. Little by little I'm starting to trust in a good thing. All signs point to happy. For me to step out from behind the wall to be clingy and cuddly is a big step. And it made for a fantastic weekend.
Sunday, July 13, 2008
And please forgive any typos. It's late, I've been at this for a few hours and I'm pooped.
Friday, July 4
I arrived in Pittsburgh and began my three-ish hour drive to Nestorville, WV. In a PT Cruiser. Yeah, baby.
Apparently, I just missed dad being....well....dad.
Dad, workin' the tractor.
(Oh, calm down, mom. I specifically picked this photo (there were eight of them) because his shirt isn't open. It's all very PG.)
My brother and sister and their families were already there.
Tent City, WV
After all of the hugs and hellos, Ma and Pa were presented with a cake.
They have purchased land (officially dubbed Pisswilly Ranch) and are in the process of getting a mobile home on that land. We don't know when they're going to actually get to move up there, but they're ready.
That evening, my brother set off fireworks. Oohs and aahs were heard for minutes.
Sorry. No photos.
Saturday, July 5
Mom and I got up early and went to breakfast.
Why, what's that on the menu?
That's right! Coco Wheats! And now that I think about it, I meant to pick some more up while I was there. I forgot. Crap.
Later that day was bonding with the family.
My siblings, Wendy & Shane, with pa.
Then there was dinner, and more bonding with the family.
I thought I was being sexy. No one else did. Might have been the wine.
Then my sister's husband got a wild hair and decided he was every bit as cool as the young whipper snappers, so he partook in rolling down the hill.
At least he didn't throw up, right?
And Saturday ends with a very heavy four year old sitting on me.
Sunday, July 6
Tent City was dismantled and the siblings, and their families, left for home. Right as my aunt and uncle arrived. Ma and pa took them up to Pisswilly Ranch and while they were there, my aunt collected a bag of apples to make homemade apple sauce. So, me, my mom and my aunt sat and peeled apples (which, by the way, hurts the hell out of your hands) while singing gospel songs. A very West Virginia moment.
That evening, the sickness set in. Could have been the heat. Could have been dehydration. Could have been the beef I put in the lasagna I made for dinner. Could have been the tubs of Clorox in the bedroom where I was sleeping that my uncle swears prevents mold in the room. In any event, I was miserable.
Monday, July 7
Still sick. I woke up at 6:30am then went and crawled into mom and dad's (empty) room, since they had an actual bed and I was on a quarter inch of foam on the floor in my grandma's old room with a 10 year old. And Clorox. Dad gave me a pill to settle my stomach and my mom got me a bucket. I slept until noon, and felt a little better when I woke up.
My dad and uncle had gone up to the ranch to scope out where the mobile home was going to go and what trees would have to come down and other country, outdoorsy, retirement stuff, so mom, Trent and I took them lunch. I did not eat.
Side note: this house is on the road leading up to the ranch. Would you take a look at that porch? Sigh. I want this house.
(Take note, Nancy)
Anyway, here's the property.
The First Supper (okay, "lunch") at Pisswilly Ranch
More sleep that afternoon. Which was okay, because it thunder stormed for a little while. Actually, it did that every day. Little thunder, big downpour, then sunshine. Not too bad.
Tuesday, July 8
Shopping with my cousin, Hippy. Yes, Hippy. Her real name is Diane, but everyone in the family has a nickname. Harry, Lardy, Whitty, Hippy, Gillis, Binky. It's a hillbilly thing.
I bought WV hats and shirts for Todd and the kids. Gotta represent.
Stopped by the property for a bit to check out dad's new riding lawn mower that he and the uncle purchased that morning.
Here's my response to dad's tractor photos. Whadya think? Who works a tractor better?
That afternoon, I finally made it down to the creek. Hippy took some pics, but I haven't gotten them yet. I'll have to bug her about that.
Sickness update: the stomach was better, but the allergies had set in. Nose was clogged up, I started sneezing my head off, and as soon as I would lay down to sleep, I started coughing. So I slept on the couch.
Wednesday, July 9
Mom and I spent the entire day driving around looking at mobile homes. The entire day. I've learned alot. Not sure when I'll ever use this information, but it's tucked away for further reference.
And then, I got a little alone time, so I laid down by the creek and read a bit.
Sickness update: cough cough, hack hack, ACHOO, ACHOO, (blow) ACHOO, cough cough, ACHOO (blow). Oh, for the love of puppies, shoot me. Where is my codeine cough syrup when I need it?
Thursday, July 10
After a long drive, and almost hitting a groundhog that was sitting in the middle of a four lane highway, I arrived at the airport. My brother and his family got to see a big black bear sitting in the middle of the road on their drive up. I get a groundhog. Stupid groundhog.
Note to self: my very thin, Hanes boys' white tank top makes getting through security a breeze. Use it if ya got it, right?
And the final pic of the trip.
Does a pink cowboy shirt negate the "toughness" of the cowboy himself? Hmmmm....
Sickness update: cough cough, hack hack, ACHOO, ACHOO, (blow) ACHOO, cough cough, ACHOO (blow). Todd picked up my cough syrup while I was gone, so I downed a big swig before bed and slept soundly though the night. And Friday, felt right as rain. Huh. Must have been that clean, mountain air.
Next up.....Weekend Update!
Thursday, July 3, 2008
Last minute binders to make
Two more meetings to plan
Out Of Office to set
Oh, but no can do
Map from Pittsburgh
Printing of the itinerary
Weather for Nestorville
What to pack, what to pack?
T-shirts and shorts
Do I need a fleece?
Duh. Always take a fleece.
Did I send that last email?
Is everything tidied up?
Does the big boss lady have her schedule?
Should I give them a phone number?
Nah. Let 'em wing it
One last Swiffering
Desk is so clean
Papers are stacked neatly
Coffee cup is washed
File cabinet is locked
Pens will not go missing this time
Like at Christmas
Okay, it's time
Lock the door, turn off the light
Am I forgetting anything?
Got my glasses
Got my printouts
Left notes for the bosses
Feel like there's something else.....
Oh for the love of puppies, let's just get the hell outta here!
See ya in a week!
After the massage, I jaunted off to West Seattle where Shaun FINALLY got to meet Todd (or as Shaun has been calling him - Snuffalufatodd.) We had dinner at the Celtic Swell on Alki while Erin McNamee played pretty much every song from our old Guitar Night binder.
The men seemed to get along just fine. They talked about movies and music and other stuff that I tuned out because I was listening to Erin. I got a text later that night from Shaun, telling me he approved. Well, "tentatively approved" were his exact words, but I know Shaun, and I know he's just giving me a hard time. I hope. In any case, I'm glad that hurdle has been cleared. Now I just need to Todd to meet Kim-n-Tim and then the relationship will be 100% real.
What about the parents? you ask.
Mom and Todd apparently have a little email relationship going on, so I consider them having already met. Wouldn't you agree?
After dinner, I headed back to Ballard (school night, you know) and promptly fell asleep. But I was awakened at 2:30am by pouring rain, thunder and lightning that lit up my whole apartment. There had been lightning all evening, but nothing like this. Holy geez. I was *this close* to calling Todd and whining that I was afraid the lightning was going to come in the windows and get me.
Did you know my uncle has been struck by lightning? Twice?
So you can understand my fear.
In the end, I decided I was a big girl and did not need to call my boyfriend in the middle of the night just because I was scared. I did, however, unplug all of my major electronic items. Cause that's what you do in Texas during a thunderstorm. What happens if you don't? Your big ass 50-something inch TV blows up.
Ask my parents about that.
So I unplugged stuff. Including my precious coffee maker. Priorities and all.
And this morning, it's dark and rainy, but that's okay. Because in 24 hours I will be on a plane, headed to the country.
Where the forecast says scattered thunderstorms through next Wednesday.
But it's still vacation so I'm not bothered. Now, if the creek is too high to play in, like last time I was home, I'm going to be one pissed off chicky. Here's hoping the universe is happy this week and works with me.
Wednesday, July 2, 2008
I need to throw a tantrum. Big time. I'm wound up and I'm not sure why. My underthings are cutting into me, my shirt is too tight, I feel fat, I hate these jeans and my shoe has something that's poking me.
One of my supervisors is out so everyone feels the need to pop their little head in my office and ask where he is. How about I don't care? Now get outta my office.
I just remembered a meeting that is happening on July 14, my first day back after a week long vacation, and I haven't done the minutes for the last meeting to present at this meeting. So I gotta get that done before I leave work tomorrow. And minutes take me a long, long time. It's really no fun.
I feel like I have something in my eye but I can't find anything. So I'm rubbing my eye a lot. And it's pissing me off.
Sorry. That's all I got.