Monthly Archives: August 2009

Only 3 1/2 Years.

This was my cubicle this morning:

This is my cubicle tonight.

My position was eliminated today at 4:55 PM.

I think I’ll take tomorrow off.

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Filed under Money Hump Building

All Over the Place.

I have lists. Lists of things I need to do, lists of things I need to buy. Like groceries, for example… and ink. My printer is out of ink.

I got my ticket in the mail. It’s not going to cost me $134. Nope. Much, much more. Bail is $212, or traffic school is $262. That is insanely expensive and way, way beyond my $20 rule. I’m now thinking it might be worth it to go to court and beg for a lesser fee… because $262 for being maybe 20′ early in the bicycle lane? That’s just ridiculous. That’s $13.10/foot. I’m pretty sure penis enlargements are less expensive than that… I saw it in my spam mail just this morning. Not that anyone would want a 20′ penis…

I booked a round trip flight to visit my Aunt Marj, arriving just a couple days after her birthday in November. I am really excited about going to see her! And, if you’re interested, to put the airfare in perspective, I can fly 3,104 miles (round trip) for less money than driving 20′ in a bicycle lane. Yes, I’ll be doing cost comparisons for awhile.

I just looked out the window and saw my resident hummingbirds. They love my back yard and I love having them in my back yard. They sit out there for hours on end, perched on plants or the string of lights, I love having a hive of hummers.

Ohhh, I attended my community’s board meeting a couple days ago to request that they heat the pool in our section of the community until November 1 (instead of turning it off early or heating the small, heavily shaded kiddy pool). My swim friend/neighbor attended, too. I left the meeting after I spoke, and before they rendered their decision. She came by the pool this morning as I was finishing my swim and told me that the Board had been persuaded by my presentation, that they granted all my requests. She gave me all the credit and I was so shocked.

Well, the cats are passed out, taking their early afternoon nap and I’ve gotta get going to run my errands. Y’all have a nice weekend and STAY OUT OF THE BICYCLE LANE, hear?

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Filed under I ♥ My Miata, I own a Home, I Stimulate the Economy

Love & Loathe — 08/25/09

Love:

* That there’s only 4 months until Christmas.

* Going to the mountains, like we did this past weekend, and doing all the things we do in the mountains… visit to KMart, the Candy Shop, squirrel watching, book reading, sleeping in, hiking, visiting the shooting range (I got the best shooting score!!). Idyllic stuff. Good stuff.

* I bought these a few months ago and thought it’d be fun to use them during the summer months for our iced tea. I love how they look like we should be using them for something else.

* How fun my cubicle at work looks. I may have a “small cubicle complex”, but I get a lot of compliments on it. So I guess it is true — it’s not how big it is, it’s how you use it?

Loathe:

* The not so good moment in the mountains when we discovered that the one store where we’d been able to buy our favorite pie has stopped carrying it. Gah! I just know I’m gonna be a hoarder because of discontinued products!

* Frisky bullet shells, such as the ones I experienced this past weekend. The most exciting one started in my cleavage and went all the way down south. I got burned in three places. First time that’s ever happened.

* Weird sleep patterns.

* Squeaky doors.

* Drama over stupid stuff.

* Clutter.

One Last Thing:

I didn’t get a very good picture of this, in fact, the picture pretty much sucks, but since I took it, I’m posting it. Mostly it’s just a reminder to me to put the question out there. So, here’s what it is… I’ve seen quite a few vehicles driving around with stickers on their back window saying things like, “In loving memory of John P. Andrews… 1978 – 2005.”

Do you think they just want to remember their loved one or do you think that’s like a portable headstone and they’re driving around with an urn in their car, belted into the passenger seat?

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Our Anniversary.

It’s been four years since we trekked to the mountains and then hiked a mile, with a little rock climbing thrown in at the end, to get married in the place where he proposed to me. It was a unique wedding, to say the least, and it was perfect for us.

At the time, I didn’t feel ready to be married … I was scared, I was overwhelmed, I still had healing to do, I was still carrying emotional baggage. I thought I had to be in the perfect place emotionally, physically and at the perfect time in my life — like getting on a ship. If the anchor wasn’t cast to hold things in place, and the loading ramp wasn’t lined up perfectly, then I’d end up adrift in the ocean.

But then I realized, marriage isn’t like a boat ride… in a good marriage, you aren’t tethered to shore or anchored to the bottom of the sea. Marriage is like a hike. Sometimes the path is carved out of granite and the going is dry, tough and not very pretty. Other times, there are waterfalls and shady areas that take your breath away for the sheer beauty and spirituality. When you get tired along the way, you have someone to hold your hand or cradle your head while you rest. You don’t have to be perfect to get married, you just have to be strong enough to be “weak” — willing to be vulnerable, to let him into the inner core, to let him help you heal. You should have the freedom to choose which path you take, as long as you always end up back together, facing the same direction. Facing life together, with family and friends surrounding you in love.

Marrying this man is like a little slice of heaven pie each day for me. There is so much more to him than I would have ever guessed when we first met and every day I love getting to know him just a little more. There are so many of his virtues I could extol, but I really don’t want people throwing up just because they read my anniversary post on my blog.

So, I’ll just finish by saying that when I look at couples who have been married 20+ years, I know that four years seems like a piece of sand on the beach — there’s a whole lot more sand to cover. But then I think about all we’ve done together and, boy, have we made every single piece of sand in our marriage count so far. We are really good at making memories that last.

Happy Anniversary, babe.

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Love & Loathe – 08/18/09

Love:

* The smell of laundry in the air in the mornings — my company is now located across the street from an apartment complex and as I walk from my car to the building, the scent of laundry in a dryer wafts through the air. It’s a comforting smell that I enjoy.

* Cracker Jacks. One of the “oldest” snacks, dating back to the late 1800’s, but I love the sweet treat as if it were invented yesterday. It’s also one of those things that I always forget about and then when I remember, I’m like, “Oh yeah, I really like those!”

* My weekly visit with Grace. I ♥ Grace.

* Rambutans. Tastes similar to the lychee, but way cooler looking.

* Carolina Pad’s Simply Chic line of products — really brightened up my dull cubicle, let me tell you! The best part is, I found nearly the entire line on clearance at my local Walmart. Although I did buy a few things off their website — it came all wrapped like a Christmas present in August. I was impressed. I may have become a teensy bit obsessed with that line…

Loathe:

* Chipped fingernail polish. One of those things that just bugs me.

* Waiting or being in limbo with things.

* The chairs we now have at work. They look nice and are somewhat comfortable, but the details of the chair’s design was not thought out for female sitters. For example, the wheel plate is metal instead of hard plastic, like most desk chairs. I know, you’re like, “So what?” Well, women wear heels. If the wheel plate is the metal bell, then women’s heels are the gong — all day long. Also, the back of the chair is terrible for women whose hair is past their shoulders. Tangles it like a windstorm. So I now wear my hair in a bun (no tangles) and listen to the radio by wearing ear pods (no gonging). But, like I said, the chairs look nice.

One Last Thing:

It seems as if something has changed the last few months and I’m mentally bringing work home with me. My boundaries are in place as far as no phone calls or e-mails once I leave the office, but mentally I’ve lost that boundary and I need to reinstate it. I examine and re-examine things that were said or done during the day and I need to figure out a way to stop. I need to figure out a way to focus on the here and now.

So, how do you leave work behind? Once you cross that threshold and get out the door, how do you focus on the moment you’re living instead of the moments you’ve finished?

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Filed under I Stimulate the Economy, Love/Loathe, Protected

In the Air.

Someone’s Birthday

I can’t believe it’s August already. Tony’s 36th birthday is tomorrow (the 17th). We met when he was 28, he’ll be 36 tomorrow. Makes a person wonder where the time goes, doesn’t it?

This man makes me laugh so hard. We had date night on Friday, and went to our local Red Robin for dinner. As we sat there eating, one of us decided it would be entertaining to do body builder postures. And so, there we sat, with every bite of food we took, posturing to flex our biceps or quadriceps or neck muscles or whatever sitting pose we could invent to flex a muscle. “Hey look! Our car is that way!” Flexing a bicep to point repeatedly. “Oh yeah, well this chicken wrap is the best I’ve ever eaten!” Overflexing chest muscles to pick up a green burrito looking thing. On and on it went. We were laughing so hard we nearly had tears running down our faces. The waitress must have thought we were insane but, I’m telling you, it was the funniest dinner I’ve ever eaten.

Happy Birthday, babe!

No Shampoo, etc., Week 13.

May 17th was the last day I used shampoo — that was 13 weeks ago. Hard to believe, but it’s not really any big deal anymore. In fact, I’m slowly but steadily whittling away the inventory of shampoo by using them as a post-swim body wash. Outright discarding them seems wasteful. I have no plans to ever use shampoo to clean my hair again.

I use my baking soda/water rinse every 2 to 3 days, as needed, and my recipe for that concoction has never changed.

We have really hard water, so I boil 32 oz. of tap water, turn the heat off and add 1/2 c baking soda. I then wait until it cools and pour into a squeeze bottle. I use only on my scalp while showering. For soft water, you would just add the baking soda to the water without boiling and shake.

I’ve finalized my apple cider vinegar rinse recipe, and it’s now fine-tuned to what my hair needs — I use this every day, since I swim every day. I add 1 c aloe vera juice, 1/4 c apple cider vinegar, a 10″ stalk of fresh rosemary and fill the rest of the 32 oz. bottle with tap water. As I mentioned, I use this every day and I use it on the entire length of my hair. Takes about a cup per use.

I’ve completely stopped using Scalpicin, I don’t need it anymore. My scalp is healthy with no inflammation or itching. Occasionally, due to a preference for lovely smells, I’ll use a small bit of sulfate free conditioner or a small bit of sulfate free oil. Loreal has a wonderful line of products that I love.

In addition, I keep a small plastic container by my sink of baking soda. This I make a paste of when rinsing my face. It makes a great makeup remover and exfoliates my skin.

Here’s a picture from last week, after my hair cut:

Yeah, I figured you wouldn’t be able to tell…

Anybody but me feeling the change of the seasons? There’s something in the air, isn’t there? The smell of autumn, a little bit of a chill at night that wasn’t there a week ago? Hmmm.

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Filed under Best Husband, Hair Can Be a Topic of Conversation

One Hundred Thirty-Four

Things you can get for approximately US $134:

    * On Wednesdays, you can buy 536 hot dogs for $.25/each at Weinerschnitzel’s.

    * 41 gallons of petrol (at $3.219/gallon, the current rate at the gas station at the corner).

    * 8 GB iPod nano on Amazon.com. Actually, that one’s a nickel shy of $134…

    * 1,696 ounces of baking soda (at $2.49 per 32 oz. box).

    * 11 bags of cat food (nearly a year’s worth of feline happiness).

    * A couple tickets to see Bill Cosby in September.

    * 33 fish tank filters (that’s nearly 4 years of filters, folks).

    * Approximately 10 pounds of filet mignon at Costco.

    * A traffic ticket for a less than 10 second ride in the bicycle lane if you cut over before the dotted line to make a right-hand turn.

I’ll let you guess which one I chose.

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Filed under I feel Amused

Love & Loathe – 08/11/09

Love:

* Blaring funky dance music.

* My friend, Grace, who lets me come over to her house on my lunch hour and hang out with her. A home away from home is a welcome midday respite.

* My mom — she is genuinely interested in me as a person. From halfway around the world, she listens and provides needed wisdom. Even though I know she has her own stresses and struggles, she is always, always there for me.

* My husband is one of the most responsible, reliable, loving, compassionate people on this planet. Even though I know he is stressed to the max right now, he never falters at being the best husband, the perfect husband, for me. I am so blessed.

* Gardenias… my gardenia tree just keeps blooming like crazy.

* Plumeria blossoms… my plumeria tree burst out in flowers last week.

Loathe:

* Struggling so very hard to paste a smile on my face when it’s the very last thing I feel like doing.

* Feeling depressed, overwhelmed and in over my head.

* Hormones that are all over the place and based on the knife sharp physical abdominal pain I’ve been having this week, as well as the emotional fluctuations I’m battling, I’ve been pondering just how much longer I have before endometriosis takes over my life again. Oh, Aleve, how I love thee… it helps me take things one sharp pain at a time!

* Having terrible dreams that I actually remember. I never remember my dreams, but I remember the one I had this morning and wish I didn’t.

* One of the cats had diarrhea with blood in it… we have no idea which one, and they all seem overwhelmingly normal in their lethargy, no observable abnormal weirdness or behavior or temperatures. (sigh) (shrug) What to do?

* My husband lost two of his little fish this past week. You know how losing fish makes me so sad.


One Last Thing:

I mentioned a couple weeks ago that my Aunt Marj was diagnosed with breast cancer. She had a mastectomy last week and came through the surgery great, is in no pain, she said, and seems to have a really great attitude — kicking ass and taking names, don’t you know. The doctors believe they successfully removed all the cancer, but they’re testing the surrounding muscle to be sure. She goes in for her follow-up appointment this Friday where she’ll learn the results of the test.

Please be praying that they got it all and that the test on the surrounding muscle and tissue is normal — which would mean she doesn’t need chemotherapy.

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Filed under I feel Sad, Love/Loathe, Money Hump Building

Highlights.

So, I finally plunged ahead and decided to face the cranky service adviser at the dealership I’ve been going to for over seven years and schedule an appointment for my overdue oil change. You remember me telling you about him? The one who, when I asked when my car would be done after 75 minutes had passed, argued with me that it always takes this long and I pointed out that I’ve always done the oil changes on my lunch hour and haven’t had a problem before and then he said “whatever” and walked out on me? Yeah. I don’t hold grudges.

So there I am, Wednesday, being brave and calling there, and wouldn’t you know, The Ass who was an ass three months ago answered the phone with an annoyed, loud, obnoxious “SERVICE!” Apparently, he’s still an ass. So I hung up on his ass without saying one word.

I was gonna go there only because I really like the Mazda mechanic they have, but to deal with The Ass? I think not.

So I called a dealer who is closer to my work, all scared I was gonna get yelled at again, but the lady who answered the phone sounded like she’d been waiting for my call all day and for a second I was scared I’d accidentally called a phone sex line. She was THAT nice. Not that I would know, understand, but I’ve heard things about things. Anyway, so I asked if they could service my car for the same “family” price the other dealer had been giving me for seven years, without any hesitation, she said “Sure, when do you want to come in?” And I almost asked, don’t I get more foreplay??

I ended up going in that day and, wow, even though they have construction going on and they’re set up in trailers, I felt like I was an honored guest. I was offered water by no less than three people, one of the employees came over and handed me the remote to the TV (even though I was reading a Glamour magazine). I was fairly certain that if I’d decided to take a nap, a pillow and blanket might have appeared from somewhere. You know how I love to nap while waiting for my car! Well, turns out, they CAN do an oil change in less than an hour. 35 minutes to be exact, and i require at least 40 minutes for a decent nap.

There was a minor hiccup somewhere in the communication, because I told them to check and top off all fluids that were low. When I popped the hood after the appointment just outside of their garage to double-check their work, I noted that they had not topped off the antifreeze container, which was well below the “low” line. What was funny about that was, everyone in line of sight came running and wanted to know what was wrong. Let’s just say it got taken care of in quick order.

The other highlight of the week was that I finally got up the nerve to go to the dentist and get my teeth cleaned. Overdue for that, too. The last cleaning I had was a deep scaling on all four quadrants and if that doesn’t sound scary, I don’t know what does. Basically the hygienist goes below the gumline and removes all build-up that is keeping the gums from getting all cozy with the teeth. It was scary, bloody and I had four half moon crescents dented into both of my palms afterward from my fingernails. So I was scared to go again because I really didn’t want to do another deep scaling.

Of course, not going is just the opposite of what a person should do. As with anything in life, the longer you wait, the worse it gets… best to just face the thing and get it over with. Fortunately, the news wasn’t too bad.

I’m facing some more scary stuff at work. Office politics reared its ugly head while my boss was out on vacation last week over things that I would normally brush off and be over already. But given the tenuous and fragile relationship we barely re-established just before she left, and the manner in which these things were handled while she was out, I’ve been a nervous, fretting mess with a gnawing worry monster in my gut all weekend, hoping that she sees and understands my side of things.

AND just to top it all off, I got my hair trimmed on Saturday. Always a big deal to me, even though the same woman has been cutting my hair since August of 2005, I always fret just a bit that she’ll cut it crooked or cut too much. But, as usual, she cut it straight and snipped just the right amount off. I’d show you a picture, but if you’re anything like Tony, you wouldn’t even notice that any hair is gone. Interestingly, she noticed right away at how much healthier my hair felt to her and asked me what I was doing to it. When I explained my baking soda/water and apple cider vinegar/aloe vera/rosemary regiment, she stood there with her mouth hanging open and then called the other hairstylists over to check it out. I think my hair was stroked by at least three people on Saturday.

Yes, I know how that sounds. And, yes, it was exactly like that.

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Filed under Hair Can Be a Topic of Conversation, I ♥ My Miata, Money Hump Building

Love & Loathe — 08/04/09

Love:

* Snug’s summer antics. I had forgotten about this thing Snug does when we run our box fans. He positions himself either in front or behind it and then YOWLS into it at the top of his lungs. He likes the sound of fan distortion, apparently, because he’s been doing this every summer for awhile now.

* It’s August! Tony’s birthday month! Our anniversary month! Four months until Christmas! This is exciting stuff, folks!! I keep telling him that his third job is playing the lottery, so maybe for his birthday he’ll finally win — the lottery from a broke state. HA HA!

* Finally, finally, finding a GYN and his office staff that I like — the whole package (see previous post). I can’t believe it. Best experience of having my bottoms off and on the table, ever (except for my RE, that is).

* Someone at my work did something right with their tomato plants. The person brings in a large bag every Monday morning and leaves it in the kitchen for everyone to share. I wish I knew who it was, because I’d love to tell them thank you!

* While my fancy-pants watch is in the shop getting a new battery, I bought a cheap thing on clearance at Big Lots! The flowers on this thing appear and disappear and I could stare at it all day. Never has time going by been so fun to watch before!

* Summer swims in the outdoor pool. These wonderful swims are what I think and dream about while swimming inside at the gym during the winter.

Loathe:

* Searching for stuff only to learn that it’s been discontinued. For example, I have a Kensington Pilotboard Multimedia Keyboard at home that I bought three years ago. I love everything about it and would love to have one at work, too. But guess what? Kensington no longer makes it. Grrr. Cosmetic companies discontinue stuff ALL THE TIME and it makes me crazy. I feel like I have to stockpile stuff when I like it because next time I go to the store, it might not be there. I think I may have a glimmer of understanding for hoarders, because I think it probably all started with the “discontinued” error.

* People who talk on their cell phone in a public restroom while using the toilet. When I encounter that, I intentionally become a multiple flusher, but it matters not to them. The one I encountered this past week at work was sitting on the toilet grunting and plunking and talking mid-plunk. So gross.

* Traffic. I now have to take one of the horrific California freeways to get to work. My other option is a surface street with traffic lights. So I take the freeway. I thought I had figured out the traffic patterns and it worked great for three days last week, leaving my house 5 or 10 minutes earlier than usual I missed all the traffic. Apparently I was tricked, because my strategy isn’t working this week.

One Last Thing:

This past Sunday, I was walking back to my car after swimming and a butterfly caught my eye. It was fluttering up and down, in giant circles, at the will of the breeze that was following the bank of the road up the hill. I increased my walking speed, got back to my car and grabbed my camera. I looked for the butterfly and caught a glimpse of it, but then it was out of range. I saw it again, then lost it, saw it, lost it, and finally just decided to take a wild shot, not even hoping that I captured it photographically. When I downloaded my pictures, I was stoked to discover that I actually did get it in the picture I took. What a lucky shot!

Cropped to the butterfly:

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