Thursday, December 30, 2010

Grieving for my family of four

Last summer when our children seemed to take a VERY long time to gain employment, Mr. P and I discussed our financial culpibility with respect to their lack of sticktoitedness. I remember being very financially stressed for most of my adult life, and I really, really wanted to spare them that particular stress so they could concentrate on school. I didn't pay for everything, because I think working is important---we left them to pay for their electricity and cable and food and $140 each for their rent, and I would pay the remainder ($200 of their rent, car insurance, car repairs, cell phones, medical stuff). We made this deal when they both had full scholarships and were getting about half again their tuition refunded to them for expenses.

Over time, they lost those scholarships due to lack of attending their classes (from what I gather). Mr. P and I downsized significantly so that we could absorb more of their finances...granted we were ready to move, but I was too chicken to buy a house in case the kids needed money. It became the norm that I paid all the rent for both of them every month without a word from either "is there work I can do for you" or "thank you so much for covering us" no nothing, and I kept paying it. And in restrospect, I shouldn't have allowed that to go on for so long.

Now I am grieving for the life I wanted them to have. I wanted them to leave college with a great undergrad and no debt, with some financial stress to learn the value of a dollar, but not enough that they lay awake at night trying to figure out what to sell on Ebay to keep the power on. That life is gone. Mr. P and I did the best we could, and apparently we just didn't get the job done, and unfortunately that means my kids are starting their adult lives without the solid base of education that I would have preferred.

As of March 1, 2011 I am no longer paying any bills for my kids. That was a VERY hard decision to come to and after I told them last night I cried. CRIED hard, first reaction to grieving, right? Well denial is likely first, which is what I did for a long time when I just paid for stuff regardless of their school progress.

So they have 2 months (really 3, since I will pay bills on March 1) to figure out their finances and get employment at a level that will support their spending habits. I have two months (really 3) to let go of being a parent to a child and instead become a parent to an adult. And while I think both kids really want that, I think we are all going to struggle with how that changes the family dynamic.

BYE "Family of Four". We had a great run.

Now we are a family of TWO with two adult children.

It is time.

Monday, December 20, 2010

So, I think NABLOPOMO is officially a fail, no?

Considering my last post in November was the 12th.

Things have been, to say the least, hectic. OH MY BLOGGY HELL. I just typed a whole paragraph about why things have been so hectic, and I was re-reading it, and fucking hit some button and it was GONE. As I was saying. I still haven't finished all my grading for my fall course. I graded twenty exams today, and have one project left for tomorrow. SHEW.

Also today I have done 732 loads of laundry, including all the bedding in my house. My children have been staying here for a couple of weeks while I have been away, and apparently they go to bed with their shoes on and let the duvets drag all over the floor...both white duvets were FULL of dog hair and floor dirt. SUPER YUCK. They also apparently each use 14 blankets a night, each of which were left on the floor at some point. I was SO aggravated, but the goal of them staying here is that my dog is okay and not fretting over being alone, and he seems good, so mission accomplished.

On the subject of my very messy children, I am trying not to be very upset with them and have a happy Christmas, but it is proving difficult. Our son quit going to classes in October, which results in all F's, and he lied about it until about 2 weeks ago when I caught him in a lie about finals. (HINT: When your Mom is a professor at the same University, don't try to lie about finals timing.) So he is not going to go to school at all. Our daughter lost her job in October, and still does not have a job. She also quit going to school in October, but has worked it all out, and is going back in January with a different major.

I know they are young, and have to find their own way, but I feel like we have completely failed. Both of our kids are very smart, funny and creative. BUT, I think they are a bit lazy and do not realize what effort real life We are about to have to take a major.stand. and the thought of it makes me so anxious I haven't slept longer than two hours in a row for weeks and weeks. So, in a nutshell, that is why I haven't been posting. I didn't want to put it out there because I am embarrassed that I did not instill better sticktoitedness (I am pretty sure that is a real world) in my kids.

Friday, November 12, 2010

my phone go boom

Today I was meeting some old friends for lunch and in my haste to get a quarter in the meter I dropped my iPhone on the sidewalk, and BOOM, it was all over for the iPhone 3. White screen of iPhone death.

I came home and Googled and YouTubed solutions and I must have broken the LED screen...I decided I would go on Tuesday to get the iPhone 4.

Two hours later, I got the iPhone 4. I couldn't STAND not being connected to the world every second.

How sad is that?

Now, Mr. P and I canceled our plans for tonight (meet up with friends for beers and trivia) and are settled in with pizza and Hell's Kitchen on DVR and talking to each other using FaceTime while we sit next to each other in the living room.

That is even sadder!

Thursday, November 11, 2010


Ten weeks ago, Mr. P and I joined a bowling league kind of on a whim. We used to bowl quite a bit when we were first married because bowling is cheap on military bases. I think at one time we were on 3 different the kids liked going to the bowling alley, they brought toys and played and there was music and french fries, and don't even get me started on the phenomenon that is a bowling alley grilled cheese sandwich.

Last night, we bowled for the league championship and we WON! It was very exciting and I even had the league high score, 221!! Now I feel like if I ever get tired of my job that pro-bowling may be a way to go.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Less words Wednesday: Gardening woes

I have some weirdness happening in my garden party.

First, I have a mad digger who is digging holes in all my potted plants, spilling my expensive dirt, having no regards for plant babies or flower pots that I have had for 20 years. Bastards.

AND, I think Bonnie's Plant Farms sold me a WEED with my lettuce....the pink is the WEED, and the blue is what the rest of the plants look like...I planted them right out of the flat I bought of Buttercrunch (or is it Buttercrisp) lettuce...maybe it isn't a weed, but I got an awesome bonus plant, but I think I am purposefully and carefully growing an expensive weed.

I flew to Kansas City

and in the process changed time zones, so I really didn't miss blogging today...



damn it.

(the title is what excuse Mr. P thought I should give. Not really sure why we would have gone to KC....)

UNLESS, this can still count as Tuesday's blog since I have not gone to bed on Tuesday it once every 24 hours bound by time, or once per day that you are awake?????

Thoughts? Did I just lose NaBloPoMo 2010???

Monday, November 8, 2010

Sometimes mail is not for reading

So, the bug guy left me a letter today:

Dear HotchPotchery,

Today I put a giant vat of bug killer all around the outside of your house. It is not organic, and is actually the most opposite of organic that is is man-made horrible poison made with extra cancer and if you accidentally lick it you will get tongue tumors within 5 minutes. However, this toxic substance will kill the following critters:

American Roaches, Ants, Ants, Species Unknown, Argentine Ants, Big Headed Ants, Ghost Ants, House Ants, Outdoor roaches, Pavement Ants, Pharoah Ants, Roach Species Unknown, Roaches, Scorpions, Silverfish, Smoky Brown Roaches, Spiders.

Yours Truly,

The Bug Guy

UMMMMMM....Roach Species Unknown?


I threw the letter away.

(I ad libbed the orange italics...but surely that is what the bug guy meant by "I treated the exterior and pest entry points.")

Sunday, November 7, 2010

We return to our regular angsty programming

We did a few things really right with our kids when they were growing up, but we have also done a few things really, really wrong.

We never taught our elder child how to deal with failure or criticisim, constructive or otherwise. As a result, when she gets any type of negative feedback she reacts so strongly that she turns little issues into huge issues, and huge issues into NON-issues because she retreats and doesn't deal with them at all.

There are a couple of instances that should have clued me in, there was this time she obviously had something in her mouth (which turned out to be a butterscotch) and she denied it to the point of hysterics. Another time, she had a cold Mountain Dew in her room, but denied taking it, to the point of slamming doors and more hystrionics. There are other instances, but honestly, reprimanding her wasn't something that had to happen much, as she really is a great kid...she did well in school, she was respectful to her teachers and coaches, and she was a good athlete. She excelled at most things, so there wasn't much room for "instruction" so to speak, but I should have realized earlier and worked on that with her, but I was lazy and just ignored it for the most part.

But now, she is at a point in her life where she is not handling herself or her responsibilities very well, and I feel helpless. Trying to talk to her is very difficult because she is so very defensive and quickly blames me or her brain chemistry for her decisions or lack there of.

I now am forced to wait and see what she does with herself. It makes me sad that she is sad, but it makes me annoyed that in order for her to do the things that she is supposed to do needs to be happy. We all have crappy stuff, and we have to work through it. From what I know, she is not in school. She is not working. I am not sure how she is spending her days. In response, I turned off her cell phone and the car insurance. I am still paying her rent because I am the guarantor.

It sucks.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

I really have no good topics

yeah, I don't really have much to say, but we are watching the Aggie-OU game...hold on....


We just scored. Aggies just scored on OU. again.

Gig 'Em.

Reveille is awesome, and according to Mr. P, she is the prettiest mascot ever.

(FYI, Auburn already won today. 10-0.)

I will be deep and thoughtful and wonderful tomorrow. All I got today is football. WHOOP.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Why I shouldn't work in the mornings.

I am NOT a morning person. Luckily, I have a job where most of the time I do not have to be. I do teach in the morning twice a week during the Fall semester, but that leaves 5 days that I can get up at will. mostly.

Now that I have tenure I have been put on 5 committees, and wouldn't you know it...the committees are full of the morning people. One such committee met last Thursday morning, bright and early. This particular committee is very serious, it is the student discipline committee, and recommends sanctions with regards to students who have behaved in such ways as to violate the student conduct code of our school. (I guess I could have skipped the description, you probably get it.)

Anyways, I got up, showered and picked out my clothes. Khaki shorts (I call them shorts, but they fall below my knees, but not quite capris), a white shirt, and navy 'boyfriend' sweater. I got dressed, took the dog out, and headed to the meeting, stopping for a gallon of Diet Coke on the way.

I got into the meeting and we were going through some stuff, and I looked down at my lap and my shorts were pooching out in such a way that it may have sort of, kind of , well looked like I was a guy and was REALLY happy to be in this meeting. At this point I reach to smooth it out, and I realized that my zipper was down. AWESOME. Very classy, very dignified.

I tried to pull my zipper up and it was all wonky and caught up in the fabric and I was really confused by it all and trying not to get weird about it while the people in the meeting were discussing some very serious subjects. I finally scootch my chair back a little and fuck me.

My shorts were on INSIDE OUT.

yeah. I don't even know.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Where do you put your ketchup?

I decided to go two days in a row without being all dark and angsty, because the rain and drizzle and chilliness actually has me feeling pretty good contrary to all expectations, especially since my dog kept me up until 3am and I drug myself out of bed at 8:30am feeling slightly nauseous from lack of sleep. (Does that happen to anyone else?)

So I was making myself a delightful breakfast scramble (peppers, onions, mushrooms, 2 eggs, a slice of cheddar on a whole grain English muffin) when I noticed that after I got the whole thing situated (egg/veggie mixture with melted cheese on top) that I flipped it upside down to put the ketchup that I love with scrambled egg next to the egg mixture...NOT next to the cheese.

Then I thought back to the last burger I had, and I did the same thing. Ketchup next to the meat on the bottom bun, then meat, cheese, lettuce, tomato, etc.

After more thought I realize I have "placement" issues with most condiments. If I am having a ham/cheese/lettuce/tomato sandwich...the condiment placement is contingent on the condiment. Mayo? Next to the tomato. Honey mustard? Next to the ham. Smooshed avocado? Next to the cheese.

Now, for hotdogs I like the ketchup directly on the hotdog, then relish, then chopped onions and jalapenos. I do NOT want the ketchup on the top of the onions and jalapenos, must be next to the dog. If that step is accidentally omitted (MR. P), then I would rather go without the ketchup than have it on the onions/jalapenos.

Nachos? I like the cheese directly touching the chips, with all the accessories (black beans, lettuce, tomato, jalapenos, etc.) on the top.

It's feeling a little weird now, so I think I better take a quick rest then go to work.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Wordless Wednesday, but with words

I am going to try the every other day approach so I don't completely scare everyone off. Yesterday I shared with how I am kind of dead inside, SO today I will share some pictures I have taken with my phone over the last couple of weeks.

First, the Poltergeist doppelganger lady that was spotted at our favorite pizza place.

Next, a claw game where you can pay $2.00 to grab a lobster that you can then have cooked for free. Penny was not amused by this.
We went to Orange Beach, Alabama and this was the view I had on my morning walk. It really helped get me centered so I could get to dead inside as opposed to raging to the point of boiling my innards. (oh, is that still a bit dark?....okay, I will try to lighten up.)
Ahh, pretty....

Mr. P thought this guy was SO cool, so we had to have his picture taken with this guy. (9-0, baby. Football has been FUN this year.)

At the same restaurant with the claw game, this tiny guy was hiding out by the trash can. (It is a tiny crab.) In deference to the bizarre issues with shellfish, we stuck to burgers and fries.

Since our move, we walk downtown for pizza/beers, work, yogurt, what have you a couple nights a week. We pass this tree everytime and we always wonder...."What the...."

Have you seen anything interesting lately?
OH, and Sabra Supremely Spicy Hummus and pretzels? I call bullshit on TEN servings in the container. I think it is more like 2.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Well, we gotta start somewhere

so I will start with how I am taking my MOTHER on a 5 day cruise in a month. Well, a month and two days. So in a month and four days, will somebody please come get me out of the Mexican prison where I most certainly will be residing?

Here is how it happened. A friend of ours wanted a bunch of people to go on a cruise for his birthday, but Mr. P can't go because of his new job...we will be going on a longer (better) cruise the following week. But I could go, because I will be done with the semester by then. Then Mr. P told me he would likely be out of town working those days, so I should think about going. I first considered taking my elder child as one of her good friends is going, but she SHOULD have finals (note how I said SHOULD---we will get back to that later), and I am not taking someone on a cruise during finals when the reason they do not have finals is not cruise reward appropriate (in my opinion).

It was the day before my mother's birthday, and I am not sure if I told you guys this, but my mom was kind of annoyed that we went on a cruise on Mother's Day and didn't invite her to come with Mr. P and I to the Bahamas....because she so wants to go on a cruise.

SO, back to the day before her birthday, I texted Penny and few times, and we decided we would give her the cruise for birthday/Christmas. So we did at her birthday dinner. She was extremely excited and very grateful, and that makes me feel good. But I am not sure good enough because I am sort of dreading it. I kind of feel like like I shouldn't have to see or talk to her in the mean time since I will have 5 solid days of all mom, all the time.

I think right now I wish that Mr. P and I lived far away and we could have Facebook and text relationships with everyone. I suck at family and friends normally, but lately? I am completely checking out. It is almost like I don't have the piece of my brain that "misses" people or feels sad when I don't see them all the time.

Well, I guess that is a start.

Monday, November 1, 2010

From once a month, to once a day? Really?

Today is the start of NaBloPoMo or some such combination of letters, and I have done this once a day posting for November quite successfully the last two years. Then, I decided about a week ago that I wanted to do it again this year, to reconnect with some people that I have missed and to reconnect with myself in my own mind.

---I am struggling with a few things.

Then stuff blew up and while I want to write it out, I have to decide if it is something I am comfortable sharing...I probably should wait until I am less upset, because right now the title of my blog post is, "Raising Asshats For Dummies" and I am pretty sure that is not the sentiment I want lingering on the Interwebs for all eternity because while I feel like there is some asshatty behavior going on right now, they are no actual asshats, per se.

And then finally, to maybe start being accountable again to myself about my healthy (or lack thereof) habits.

So here it is...I am throwing my hat into the ring for November 2010...we will see how it goes.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Third try at a snack is gonna be a party pack at Taco Bell

was what I just said to Mr. P after my first two attempts at healthy, appropriate snacks went viciously wrong.

First, I tried to heat up the remainder of some organic minestrone. Well, it wasn't liquid and it smelled weird. FAIL.

Second, I tried to toast a low-fat organic whole grain waffle and it burnt 7 shades of black. FAIL FAIL.


Sunday night I realized that all that effort at healthy, healthy, healthy was starting to revert back to unhealthy, bloated, crappy. I gained 13 of the hard lost pounds back. I basically quit jogging on a regular basis. All I was doing was working, a lot, then having pizza and beer for dinner, a lot. Lost my balance. SO, I registed for the 10K with the Christmas Lights that we did last year (with that dreaded Jolley Trolley), found a 4 week 10K training plan, and rejoined WeightWatchers.

So, today, on DAY TWO, after staying in points, but jogging 60 minutes (ONLY 6.16 k's, jeeeez) my dinner salad didn't cut it and I needed another snack before I dove face first into a bathtub full of candy corn---and seriously I was TRYING to do the right thing only to get smacked down. TWICE.

However, third time was a charm and I managed not to burn the waffle and topped it with some natural peanut butter and simply fruit. Now I am going to bed before I rip off Mr. P's face because he has 3 candy bars, 2 zingers and a box of rasberry cookies in his nightstand.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Breaking and Entering

So today is the day we go look at a house. But, I was so anxious about it, I went and jog stalked the house this morning. I wanted to jog past and look and think..."could I live there"...then continue jogging and decide..."could this be MY street" etc.

But I didn't just jog past. Really, that is all I meant to do...then the NEXT thing I know I am jiggling doors until I got one to open. I knew the house was empty from the pictures online, so I wasn't worried about a shotgun in the face. So I went through the whole house in my sweaty joggy clothes. know, I texted Mr. P that I was going to jog stalk the house and he replied, "Don't get caught" and I thought...well, who would know what I was doing, I jog by there all the time. He must have figured I would try to break in.

ANYWAY, it needs wooooork. Lots of work. I think Alice made the Brady's Thanksgiving dinner in the oven...there was a label that said, "Contstant Caloric Heat" I am not sure how I feel about the looks like a laissez-faire approach to lawn maintenance has been taken in the past, which I don't hate, but no real place for me to garden. I like to garden. Enough room, but GIANT trees that shade it all up.

Pink tiled bathroom. A yellow tiled bathroom. Small rooms. But it has my favorite element about our big house that we moved out of...layered living rooms, both with fireplaces. We can set one up pretty, and let Mr. P man cave one up big time. One for football games, one for afternoon relaxing. The kitchen would need to be completely redone. There is a tiny room I would call the library with built ins, and swinging doors that lead into I am not sure what (I couldn't find the light switch, and I had been in the house for 10 minutes by now) and a garage.

ACK. 28 minutes until show time, then Mr. P and I have some shopping to do and will hash it all out, and I am waiting for my HomeBuying for Dummies to show up from Amazon. I am not sure this house will get scooped up that quickly, but if it does, it does. If it isn't...well, then maybe I am about to go into real estate.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Am I brave enough.. buy a house? That is the question that is making my stomach churn churn churn today.

I am 41 and have never owned my home, and I have always had a valid reason excuse why I haven't done it. Now that the kids are out of the house and I have tenure, those excuses are really dwindling away, and yet I still haven't done it and to be completely honest, I am pretty sure I don't want the responsibility.

At first, buying a home wasn't an option for us. We either didn't make enough money or our credit was too atrocious to even consider it. Well, those things are changing. We make a good living, and with that I have managed to rebuild our credit to a decent level.

But for the first time in my life, I feel like I only have to be responsible to myself and Mr. P, and I am not convinced I am ready to give up three times a year vacations for a new roof or wiring. I don't know if I want to spend weekends doing home repair and yardwork, when I can just call the rental people. I know, I is a tax deduction...BUT, my argument there is that the mortgage I am willing to take on with the rate I am thinking I will get, will not put us into the Itemized Deduction category no tax break...we could be building equity, not just paying rent, true. But if anything catastrophic breaks, I am not responsible...I call the people...not sure I want to be the people.

But all that aside, we have an appointment to go look at a house tomorrow at 1pm. It is a great location on a street we love. It is a bizarre, cute, older house---big kitchen, fireplace, deck. Big yard. But the price is WAY too right--about $20 a square foot less than the norm around here...

I know what we spent to get a RENTAL to my standards...what the hell will I want to spend to get a home I OWN to standards when I don't have the fall back of..."it's just a rental"... ugh.

Why did you buy?

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Let's have a patio garden party!

The weekend weather was perfect to do outdoor work, so that is just what we did!

In July, I asked Mr. P for a raised bed garden plot as my birthday gift. My family pitched in, and yesterday it was realized. I love it so much that I get up from what I am doing and just go marvel at how it is exactly what I hoped it would be. The bed is fully planted with fall crops, and while it may not yield much, I get such a kick out of how a tiny flower with bees and butterflies fluttering about will all OF A SUDDEN be a tiny baby pepper or cucumber or eggplant.

My summer crops were a bit weird. Peppers? OH YES. Cucumbers? ehh...a few weird ones. Strawberries? 4. BUT OH MY berries, the absolute sweetest tastiest berries ever. And the strawberry plants that I thought were dead are coming back. Squash? Nada. NOT ONE. Ichiban eggplant? Scarce until the weather broke, and now that the temps are below 90 I have already eaten 4, harvested a grocery store size one today, and have 4 or 5 more growing. Apparently the eggplant do not love the Alabama heat like the peppers do. Melons? EPIC FAIL. Tomatoes? Grape, yes, and again, once the weather broke I now have maybe 45 blossoms, but not one regular size tomato all summer long.

Oh, I got sidetracked talking about the summer garden, when my point was to show you my fall garden party area. (I likely will not have a garden party, but I love sitting outside reading magazines in the sunny breezy gorgeous weather we have been having...and I call that my garden party.)

BEFORE: (now before you get oh so judgy about the hideousness of my yard, remember this is a rental!)

Way down at the bottom of the hill is Mr. P whacking weeds!

and NOW: TA DA!!

And the piece de resistace:

A different vantage point:

My summer garden...the frame thing is what Mr. P built so I could have all my plants at the apartment, and I still like it so I still have it.

It is kinda weird that we have all this set up in the front yard, but my back yard is all tree roots and shade. The "deck" and chairs were out back, but Friday night Mr. P and I sat out there with a beer, but Joe (the dog) kept wanting to be out front. We admitted we like out front better we just said, "WhatEV" and put the garden party in the front yard because that is how we roll up in here.

I really love it, but now looking at the pictures---I am wondering if it is more really weird than kinda weird....

Thursday, September 30, 2010

I am not mad

I have been out of blogging mode for most of the last year.

A few days ago, I decided to read my old blogs to see where I was, to see if I could relate to where I am now. DUDES. I was angry and bitter and then angry some more. I want to chalk it up to tenure tension, but even after I got tenure. I was upset and angsty and upset some more.

Maybe that is why I am less bloggy, I am not pissed at the world, when apparently I used to be. I love my life. I get annoyed and pissy, but in all seriousness, I am getting on board with my tiny house, I love my husband, I have tenure, so I only have to do work that I LIKE to do...I have money I need to pay my bills.

Nothing is that different from a few months ago. I wonder why I was so bitter---I am embarrassed by how nasty I was about my life.

Sorry life. I know it's good.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

I do NOT want a puppy

First of all, thanks for the Frisky condolences. I haven't cried in two days, but I miss that pain in the ass, and I see her out of the corner of my eye a lot and it is either a bird statue or a tiger Webkin or a flashlight. Now, on to other animal things.

For the first time in the history of my life, I do not want a baby animal. I feel it in my bones, I know it in my brain, my heart does not have the capacity to love and lose another animal.

I have loved and lost nine dogs and three cats. I still have THE dog, but I am thinking the magic number of dead animals is going to be 13 for me.

Okay, I might be lying to you and myself. I might be able to love and lose another dog or cat. I think that I am completely over being responsible and living my life around an animal. We can't live in a sweet condo downtown because my dog is awful on stairs and he would not like having to always be on a leash. I schedule my lunch hours and work schedule around my mutt. He gets anxious when we are gone, and I alternate between being livid that he peed on the floor AGAIN and being petrified he will keel over and I will have a 110 pounds of dead dog to be hysterical over. Mr. P and I are going to be in the southern Caribbean for 10 days in December and I hate that he will be at the doggie daycare and kennel that whole time.

But, here is the bizarre twist of fate...Mr. P is wanting a puppy, but he keeps guising it as a present for ME. I told him in no uncertain terms...I do NOT want a puppy. BUT, I have brought all the other animals into the house, so I will not prevent him from getting a puppy---but it will NOT be mine. NOT mine. HIS.

I wonder how long it will be until we have a puppy.

Friday, September 24, 2010

most annoying creature ever

is how Mr. P refered to Frisky.

Disclaimer: This is a downer post, but I hoped writing would help. I can't tell yet, which is why I am posting anyway.

Our cat.

She was a TALKER and PURRER and BEGGAR of potato chips and fried chicken. She wasn't that independent, she spent most of her time with us. However, she would also randomly sleep in closets, drawers, shelves, cabinets or right in the middle of the floor or in the middle of the dining room table.

Then, yesterday morning I got up and was organizing some stuff, and went into the still very cluttered office to get a file folder, and she was under the desk. Not that surprising, until I talked to her and she didn't immediately talk back. I got really nervous and it was completely founded...our Frisky had died. She was 15, probably very close to the day. I am so sad. I don't even like cats that much. She was SO annoying. But here I am. Sorta heartbroken. I stayed home yesterday. I went into work today and trying not to cry made my stomach hurt so bad I had to come home and just cry. My nose is stuffy and I look a wreck now, but my stomach doesn't hurt anymore. But now Mr. P is on his way home, he has been out of town, and I have to look at his face, and he REALLY loved her, out loud and all the time.

I had to come home and look at pictures of her alive so that I could get that last memory out, but it won't go. it won't go. And while it is here, I can only cry for that damn damn cat.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Getting it together

We moved out of the house on June 30. Most of our stuff went into a pod type thing and sat in my sister's yard. Some of our stuff went with us into a one bedroom apartment. We squished in and were pretty okay. What made that apartment kind of fun is that there was no "upkeep". No consideration of painting, or replacing knobs, or major cleaning because we were only there for 30 days. Then on July 31 we moved into this house. We shoved most of the stuff into the 'office' and called it a move. We painted. Arranged. Pause. Now 30 days later we have put up some shelves. Unpacked our doodads. Repacked some doodads that still don't fit anywhere or that I decided I truly despise. Shoved that stuff and empty buckets/boxes into the attic.

I thought that we would be DONE today. Moved in so that we could truly begin to settle in so that this could start becoming our home, but our cable wires are too long (so they don't fit in the cable/hider thing), our kids didn't answer text messages about two more pieces of furniture that they wanted, I am short one accent chair that I want in the living room. The bathroom flooded.

Yep, flooded, water pouring out from the FLOOR. Stopped the whole process of washing clothes, etc. damnity damn damn.

BUT, we did manage to get our room done. I kinda love it.
Here is where we started:
Here we are today:
I sleep on the side of the bed cutoff in the picture and there is a long wall over there with no furniture and it has my favorite part of the room on it...BUT the picture is weird because I couldn't get it at a good angle in the 3 seconds I had in my room when the plumber guy wasn't going back and forth, and I wanted to do this blog post.this.exact.second.

It's all pictures of me and Mr. P...two of them are collages that I got printed as a poster at Walgreens then put into some frames that Mr. P "rescued" and repainted with some of our leftover trim paint. We also mounted my tv on the wall...which did cause some tension yesterday since I CAN'T REACH the power button. But whatev. I can deal. I tried three times to post a picture of how high the tv is (it works fine for sleepy tv watching...I fell asleep very quickly last night) but the bitchy police must be monitoring my activity as it kept failing. I will try to sneak it by tomorrow.

I hope this plumber guy is fast, I want a shower and to get in that bed before the sun sets. I am TIRED. I have my alarm set for 6am. The predicted temperature is 64 degrees. Perfect to getting my now bigger ass back into gear with a run/walk before what I predict to be a KILLER week of work---I have 6 research based deadlines and 21 projects to preliminarily grade and turn around to my grad students.

Friday, September 10, 2010

I got a major slump going on up in here

So, last I left you, Mr. P had been laid off and we were headed out for my birthday weekend. Let's see, since then:

  • I turned 41. Mr. P threw me TWO birthday parties. One drinky party and one family party. My mom pitched a fit that she was not invited to the drinky party.
  • We moved out of tiny apartment into tiny house. The house is tiny. Tiny. t.i.n.y. I got bummed out at the tinyness and the crampedness and quit unpacking about a day in. I am still not moved in nearly 6 weeks later.
  • I kept Eli for a weekend. Wow. 4 is tough.
  • Went away with my highschool girlfriends for a weekend. Awesome. Laughter. Hugs.
  • Joined a new gym and got a personal trainer. Quit running. Quit everything. Even bailed on my trainer this week.
  • Mr. P got a new job where he has to travel out of town at least one night a week. It is way harder than I thought it would be. So much so, that I went with him last night. (The job is great, he loves it, he is making more money than before, he is happy and he has a company truck that he digs driving around Alabama.)
  • I joined a bowling league and on the first day I bowled a 150 and 141, but now two days later my knee hurts and my middle finger does too.
  • I got a health screening and my numbers are good. (Blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol, etc.)

I don't know what is going on with me. I feel guilty and shitty for getting behind on stuff. And my new diet of hydrogenated/fructose corn syrup snacks that I enjoy with beers probably doesn't help my attitude or motivation much either.

I took before pictures of the house o'tiny when we moved in. My plan is to be able to take the after pictures on Sunday. Plus, I have a huge harvest of peppers and I want to invite the family over for stuffed peppers next week. Will I get it done? Time will tell.

Friday, July 23, 2010

silver linings

I am waiting for some clothes to dry and then Mr. P and I are off to the beach for to celebrate my birthday. No, my birthday is not for another week, but I enjoy at least a week of getting my way with the ever popular (in my family), "...but it's my birthday!"

I am going to eat crab, drink something fruity whilst reading in a lounge chair, walk on the beach, and generally r.e.l.a.x.

OH, and I am very sorry to disappoint, but Mr. P took some time this week and schmoozed our way into NOT having to live at Mom's for that week...we will stay in the apartment for an extra 2 days, then move into the house 5 days early!

Friday, July 16, 2010


I am VERY good at growing peppers, of various sizes and styles:

However, I am less good at growing cucumbers.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

SH it happens

Thanks for all your well wishes and thoughts out into the blogiverse, but alas, Mr. P did, indeed, get the BIG.FAT.LAY.OFF. He got a month of severance pay, and directions to the unemployment office. Jerks.

He is okay. Actually better than okay. He is nearly giddy with relief, you can almost see the stress draining out of him. I feel awful about how unhappy he must have been for him to be so happy to have gotten let go. So we are going to look at the silver lining and enjoy having a bunch of time together. I have worked, shopped and cooked sauce for dinner. Mr. P has filed for unemployment, taken out the trash, cleaned the litter box, and swept the floors.

Now we are about to take the College Kid to buy some some khaki pants and pick out a refrigerator. Talk about living the dream.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

things were going a bit too well, apparently

We settled into our tiny new digs, and other than the tiny brown bugs in our ice cubes, the washer only rinsing in scalding hot water and the refrigerator smelling like bizarre flowery cleaner, we were happy to be downsized. Waiting patiently to move into the house in a little less than a month, even though a week with Mom lies in between.

Then TODAY. Mr. P texts me to tell me that a lady at his work got laid off. THEN about an hour and a half later, the axe men walk into Mr. P's office (he works in a satellite office about 45 minutes away) and are RIGHT.THIS.MOMENT huddled in the manager guys office. The manager guy that we call the Gelmet because he wears his dyed black hair slicked back, a la, Sha-Na-Na. This same dude that has been carrying on a game of grab ass with a co-worker for nearly 6 months. This same dude that threw Mr. P's friend out to the wolves and she got fired. The same dude that treats Mr. P like his secretary (calls him and tells him to email him reminders, tells him to send his UPS shipments, etc.) even though Mr. P is a project manager. This guy is slimy and will sell Mr. P out as sure as anything.

Now, Mr. P is miserable and wants to quit daily, but we are kinda dependent on his money...and we just kind of encouraged our kids to do some stuff that would require more help from us. Blech.

If it happens, we will manage, but man alive, can we not have 4 freaking months of peace???

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Lightning only strikes once...

Last Saturday (or now two Saturdays ago), Mr. P and I were swimming in the lake when a big thunderstorm rolled in. We debated going to the marina for cover, but didn't think we would make it in time, plus we were participating in a poker run with about 30 other boats, and even if we got there, we wouldn't have a spot to park the boat. We decided to wait it out.

Rain started, no problem. Rumbling thunder, no problem. Lighting...ehh...maybe, a problem? But then I rationalized that even IF lightning hit the lake, the lake is SO huge that the electricity would dissapate, and while we might feel it, it certainly wouldn't kill us.

Little did I know that theory would be tested. We heard a loud crash and FELT a jolt at the same time as a flash of lightning hit the lake. DUDE. We didn't die, and really it didn't even hurt. It just felt, weird, like you just flexed all your muscles at once. Then I had a lingering feeling in my hip for about a minute, which I have decided healed me as I have run 5K twice this (last) week, no limping, no pain.
Not an incredibly exciting story, but man, I love saying, "I got hit by lightning."

I wrote this post a million days ago, but wanted a picture to accompany it, and I hadn't downloaded pictures since before we went to the Bahamas. yikes.

THEN, the pictures didn't turn out quite as well as I had hoped, so, sorry for the anti-climatic lightning post.
Bat shit crazy Alabama summer weather.
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Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Greetings from my kitchen floor

I am sitting in the corner of my kitchen on the floor because that is the only place I can sit. All of our belongings are either outside in the Mobile Attic, or stacked up in the breakfast nook because the entire rest of the house is carpeted and the carpets are being cleaned right now. The oven, refrigerator, bathrooms, all baseboards, chair rail, spider webby corners and fan blades have been cleaned. The inside of the windows. The sheers have been taken down, washed and re-hung. (Except the set that was MINE that Mr. P ruined. "by accident". He hated those flowy flowery drapes, I know it.) Decks have been sprayed down.

When I was showing the carpet guys the layout of the house I remembered the day we arrived from Texas. The CK and I were ahead of the boys, and we could not even believe how HUGE this house was. It is pretty immense. 3 living rooms. 4 bedrooms. 3 bathrooms. Dining room. Kitchen. Laundry room. Breakfast nook. Screened in porch. Deck. On a huge lot, on a little lake. We were amazed at our good fortune. (We rented it sight unseen as we couldn't take a trip East before we had to get place.) We had always lived on top of each other, and in this house we could really spread out. I am not happy with the status of our family right now, and I wonder if it is we really don't function as well spread out as we do right on top of each other. But spread out is how it has to be, and as excited as I am for this phase in all of our lives, right now, I really, really miss that day that we were all so happy to be here in this house.

OH, and I got struck my lightning on Saturday.

Monday, June 21, 2010

what I did today

  • Slept through the alarm set for 5:30am and managed to drag out of bed at 7am. I set the alarm so early because starting next Monday I have to teach a class at 8am and the heat makes it impossible to run at times other than 7am and 7pm. I like TV at 7pm.
  • I weighed in DANGEROUSLY close to scootching up a decade. I immediately logged into, updated my weight and made a note to self to get shit together. asap.
  • Started week 2 (note that week 1 happened several weeks ago) of my half marathon training. AND AND AND, I warmed up and stretched before I ran. Pain free the first mile (well, my hip/knee crap, lungs? different question), then a bit of pain the second mile. Managed a decent time for me. Stretched again. Iced hip.
  • Made a frappe with my new Mr. Coffee Cafe Frappe. YUM. (Impulse buy yesterday because I was sure that it would help me through said early morning class starting next week.)
  • Watered plants. Fell in love with my baby cucumbers all over again. Tried to decide how many times we are going to have to have Thai food based on the 450 peppers that are growing.
  • Showered.
  • Wrote three blog posts and deleted of them.
  • Quit the gym. OF COURSE, you have to quit by the 20th so you don't get charged an extra month. I bet they change the form every day so that you are always a day late. fuckers. I want to quit the gym!
  • Changed my address at the post office.
  • Went to Chick Fil A for lunch and to read to decompress for class.
  • Taught an hour and a half class about writing queries.
  • Taught an hour and a half class about accounting for corporate bond issues.
  • Graded projects while eating a Fage 2% with Honey yogurt thing. I almost threw it away because it was weird. But then it got a bit warmer and blended and then I liked it...but maybe not 4 points liked it. I added some Corn Flakes. Did you know that Kellogg's Corn Flakes contain high fructose corn syrup? Yeah, I didn't either.
  • Came home.
  • Made HOMEmade salsa/pico. Tomatoes, red onion, homegrown jalapeno/serrano/habanero peppers, fresh corn, black beans, garlic, cilantro, salt/pepper, red wine vinegar. DAMN it is good. and fresh. and delicious.

Now I am waiting for Mr. P to get home from his run, and we are going to eat the salsa/pico stuff on corn tortillas with some refried beans and a bit of 2% cheese. We have 8 days left in this house, and it can't happen soon.enough.

OH.MY.GOD. I have the Bachelorette on and I think one of the dudes got a tattoo with her name on it....what the hell man??? psych.o.

How was your Monday?

EDITED TO ADD: My iPod had died, and when I charged it the date/time was funky, so it logged my run at May 5, so it isn't showing up with my Nike girl. My next run (Wednesday) will be there.

Monday, June 14, 2010

pshaw...I can make that.

So, we are in the midst of packing up our kitchen so that we can accomplish step's one and two of the worst moving plan in the history of earth:

1. Get Mobile Attic (this Thursday).
2. Pack most of our stuff into Mobile Attic.
3. Have Mobile Attic moved to Penny's yard.
4. Move rest of stuff into one bedroom apartment for 30 days.
5. Move out of tiny apartment into mom's apartment for 7 days. Repack some stuff and shove into mom's apartment. Throw rest of stuff away.
6. Have Mobile Attic moved to street in front of new old house.
7. Unpack Mobile Attic, paint bedroom Sea Glass (which is the new white, by the way).
8. Have refrigerator delivered.
9. FINALLY BE THE FUCK MOVED after 2 months of horrible, random shuffling around.

Anyways, today is the day I decided I NEEDED one more planter of watermelons, AND that I should find plans online to build my own adirondack chairs while we are staying in the apartment. And a gardening bench. Because of course, a tiny apartment is the perfect setting for an amateur woodworking studio. Also, I spent about an hour researching the cost of a weekend trip to NYC because I feel like I need to jog in Central Park, eat a chicken salad BLT at Carnegie Deli and eat fluffernutter cupcakes and Mr. Misty ice cream cones. All seems very reasonable.

Do you ever make unreasonable or weird plans that you are determined to see through because if you don't, your life might be completely ruined otherwise??

Oh, and I gained 4lbs this week. McDonald's TWICE. Pizza. Wings. Fried Chicken. No jogging. I am so lame, I have got to get my shit together, I am 12 weeks out from our first half marathon of the running season. YIKES.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

but...I like to eat candy

We had a great weekend. After work on Friday we hightailed it down to the beach. Got up early on Saturday morning and got loaded on the pontoon boat and had a really good day--we snorkeled, floated, ate food, repeat for the entire day. I am so glad we went, the oil is SO close to ruining a really gorgeous area.

Got up this morning, and went out for a leisurely breakfast, then Mr. P drove home like he was trying out for NASCAR so we could get to our school's baseball games. We are in the NCAA tournament, hosting one of the brackets actually. We won both games today, one easily, the other one was a nail biter. I am actually washing my exact outfit now so I can wear it to the championship game tomorrow afternoon!

But I digress, on to where the post title is coming from....

On the trip I was looking through my backpack for a band-aid and found a baggie of candy from when we went to Belize in MARCH. Tonight after we got home from the baseball game, I ate the gummies out of it, which left Mr. P's licorice candies. I handed them to him, and he said he hated stale candy and was going to throw it away if I wasn't going to eat it. Then we had this conversation:

Me: I love stale candy.
Mr. P: I hate it, I am going to throw this away.
Me: Yeah, that is okay, I tried to eat a piece and convince myself I loved licorice and it didn't work.
Mr. P: WHAT?!?
Me: I like to eat candy.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Does anyone know where to get eggplant porn?

One of the things I did this spring during Moodfest 2010 was plant a BUNCH of plants. Peppers of every variety we could find. Anaheim. Tabasco. Habanero. Thai. Jalapeno. Green bell. Tiny bell. Yellow bell. Orange bell. Red bell. (Which later I read somewhere that the other colored bell peppers are really green bell peppers that have further ripened---so good one Bonnie plant people---you got me to buy several more plants!) I also planted Japanese eggplant, cucumbers, strawberries, zucchini, and tomatoes in two sizes, grape and regular.

Now, if you read my post yesterday, oh. you didn't? Okay, I'll wait.
Alrighty then. Now you realize that I am moving many times this summer, and of COURSE this is the summer I decided that I MUST MUST grow enough peppers to support the country of Mexico and most of Texas. I thought of that. I put them all in planters. Some of the hanging ones (4), one square wooden one, two window boxes, and a variety of pots that I found laying around the house.

They are all doing well (except most of my herbs died and I only got ONE strawberry), but now...I am having some eggplant troubles. Or I might be. I don't know. Here they are:

The last two nights I have come home and ONE leaf is completed wilted. Thoroughly limp. I checked again the next morning and the limpness was still there, so I pruned the leaf. (This happened on 3 leaves, over 2 days). I posted my problem on Facebook and my sister thought maybe my plants needed some porn. (ya know so they wouldn't be limp.) (Oh, are we the only people that always go to "penis" when the words limp, hard, or any other word that can possibly applied to a penis are mentioned? If so, then nevermind.)

I consulted TWO horticulture professors, got good advice with requests for pictures when the plant did it again. But, today? NO limp leaves. So while am not in immediate need for eggplant porn, if you are aware of where to get it...drop me a line.

Oh, and speaking of lines...check out this goose family crossing the street.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

So, what's new?

There is ABSOLUTELY a million, trillion things that I have to tell you, and yet I have opened this window at least 50 times and I got nothing. Until today, I am managing to string some words together.

So here is the abridged version of what is going on with me.

  • Last night I realized that I will sleep in this house on the first of June, then our new apartment (yikes) for the first of July, my MOM's apartment (OH MY GOD yikes) the first of August, and then, finally, by the grace of God and MacGruber, Mr. P and I will be mercifully settled into our new abode for the first of September. This is just an update. The story behind it will follow on a later date.
  • Actually MacGruber has nothing to do with our move at all, but I paid hard earned money to take my kids to see it last week in an act of goodwill (to my kids, not Will Forte). I laughed. A lot. Ha, ha 'face vagina'.
  • On the note of the children, we had a come to Jesus chat where I explained why I cared about the choices they made, and I was okay with them doing whatever it is that they want to do, but not on my dime. Seems like they are gathering their shit together into a nice, neat pile, for which I am extremely grateful.
  • Since I really wrote much I have been to the Bahamas, the beach and the lake for weekends. AND, we are going to the beach again this weekend (before the OIL, oh the ever loving OIL gets here). So, please know that my life does NOT suck, I just don't do well when my expectations aren't met, and by the by, my expectations are high.
  • After we ran the 1/2 in March, I have probably not run 13 miles in TOTAL since then. I had a little of a weird injured knee, and a LOT of feeling sorry for myself because things weren't and we did a lot of wing eating and beer drinking which is not that condusive to jogging and push-ups.
  • Yesterday, I started training for the Rock and Roll Half Marathon in Virginia Beach, VA on Labor Day weekend. Hotel booked. Registration paid. Pat Benetar and REO Speedwagon, here I come. Oh, but can I say that I am pissed at myself that 5K is really hard again? oh well. The journey, right?
  • I am the same weight as January, so that is a small victory. However, I am on day 2 of counting points. This is the furthest I have gotten in months. Maybe this time it will stick again, and I get back to talking about how awesome I am at getting healthy, healthy, healthy. That got replaced with moody, moody, bitchy.
  • Summer work is going swimmingly. And I am not even being facetious.

So there you have it. I think my head is just about right, and even though I have been quiet, I have been paying attention to the good, the bad and the ugly in your lives. I hope to become more active on your blogs and in your lives again, if you will have me.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Missing simplicity

Today I was in a bookstore and there was a mom and her two little kids looking at books and I had a crazy sad feeling of nostalgia for summers past when we were poor and trying to keep our shit together with school and bills and then on top of that trying to figure out how to keep two kids entertained on little time and even less money. Lots of swimming, $1 movies, entire afternoons at the McDonald's playground, kids coaching me through Pokemon Shoot (a video game where you mimic taking photographs of the elusive Pokemon guys, and that might be the wrong name).

I am feeling sad for those times because my kids and I are struggling with our relationships right now. I feel like they are not handling their shit appropriately, and I bet they feel like I am micromanaging and judging them and they are most definitely right. I am wholeheartedly trying to protect them from their dumb ass baby adult selves as I wish someone would have done for me. BUT, I guess we are getting close to a point in their lives where I have to let them do whatever it is they are going to do...regardless of the repercussions. That is just a very hard lever to pull.

Monday, May 3, 2010

free pants for cancer prevention!!

Since I told you I would be soon with a blog post about Relay for Life, I have celebrated my anniversary, gone through all of our closets, had a yard sale, caught a student cheating and spent more time with my mom over the weekend than I have in ages and it really grated on me. There are snippets of conversation you might enjoy, but I feel too yucky right now to type them...I am slightly injured with a tweaked knee and sick with a sore throat and headache feeling completely sorry for myself because I can't run.

But that doesn't mean that AMY can't...she is the winner of the free pants for donating to Relay for Life...I used that and I used the entries as were on my Relay page and I felt bad for her at first because she was entry 15 (out of 15...I also felt bad for V-- because she was 1)...but alas, that was the random number generated!!!

So Amy...look around at and pick some funky me your size, style and mailing address and I will get them coming forthwith!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

fatstuff and green babies

All I can manage to do these days is wrap myself in Mr. P, my fat dog, and my new plant babies (which I even took pictures of to liven up this post, but I don't have the patience to wait for them to load).

Things are overwhelming to say the least, and while I am good at regaling you with trivial tales of people calling me the wrong name, venting about my mother, or teasing Mr. P, when it comes to the big, real, meaty stuff, I get too many thoughts swirling around that when I sit down to write and my brain gets all scrambled and sad so I switch to Facebook where I can post ridiculous one-liners about how I laughed at Mr. P for recording "America: The Story of Us" and he told me if I would watch things like that I could live up to my trivia playing potential, or how I planted some peppers in Topsy Turvy planter (hence the green babies), or how we spent Friday afternoon at the lake. Nice. Simple. Surface.

I need to write about Relay for Life and what walking. and walking. and then walking some more meant to me. I need to vent how my team let me down. I need to tell how Mr. P took perfect care of me and everyone else in our 'camp' that night. I need to talk about how thrilled I was that I had so many donations from friends around the country. AND, I need to give someone some downright awesome and funky pants. Today was step one, putting some words behind my voice. Tomorrow may there be substance. And free pants.

Well, maybe not tomorrow, it is my TWENTY FIRST anniversary, but definitely Thursday for sure.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

crap begets crap

I am so completely in a lazy, McLazy, LAZY status right now I can barely stand myself. I have not run since last Tuesday under the guise that my plantar fasciitis has flared up again and I don't want to be too injured to walk during Relay this Friday. (I call bullshit on myself here, by the way.)

We had friends visiting last Wednesday, Thursday and Friday and all three meant I drank and ate too much, which resulted in my complete vegetative status on Saturday that consisted of House and Criminal Minds, playing Zoo World incessantly all while eating Chinese food and pizza. I have done the work I have to do to stay above water, but then I am spending the rest of my time watching television or just looking out the window. I have polished off the Easter candy, and perhaps the most telling sign...since my journey began the beginning of 2009 I didn't weigh in this morning. What the hell ?

But this afternoon, I was thinking about why I am freaking out and completely reverting, and I think I know what has triggered this latest sabotage that kind of started about 6 months ago. I am not quite ready to talk about it, not until I get my head straight about it anyhow. Bear with. However, since I think I know what my problem is, even though I don't really know how to deal with it quite yet, I have told myself, assured myself, promised, begged, cajoled and pleaded with myself to at the very least get my run on tomorrow. I guess we shall see.

ETA: After some effort dragging myself out of bed this morning, and reading the comments that were very supportive and maybe a bit naggy, I did get out there and managed to pound out 4.28 miles. If I didn't have a meeting in 45 minutes I think I would have just kept going and going while I debate myself about what is going in in my brains. Now to see if I can get the food to follow suit.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

mother lover

I couldn't think of a title for this post except for mother fucker, and maybe that is even less appropriate than even I deem to be today. But now this title has me thinking about the SNL song and I am laughing about it because I know how much it makes my sister laugh, and now all my angst and annoyance aren't nearly as angsty or annoying so this post may be kind of boring.

So, last October my mom moved here under the guise of us working on our relationships, etc. Well, in many ways that really hasn't worked out that well because I am still really angry at her, and I think she just doesn't really want to have relationships with us because let's face it, relationships should be two-sided and I don't know that she has thought of another human in say....15 years. Plus, dudes. She is really, really weird. She wears a floor length fur coat made out of recycled tires when it is any temperature below 70. She smokes 80 cheap ass cigarettes a day and hacks like a merchant marine who has been snorting fiberglass for 30 years. She eats generic bologna as her only food group that isn't candy or Pop tarts and carries around bits of food in her pockets. Not in a baggie in her pocket, just plain old cookie right there in the pocket. (which is handy when you are 3 and want to feed the fish at the pond, so Eli doesn't completely mind.) When we have family events she can't stay where we all are and participate because that might cut in on her smoking time, so she hovers around and when she hears something that may intrigue her she yells, WHATTTTTTTTTTTTTT and right now my anger is back and I want to punch her right in her smoke hole.

Anyhow, in January she announces to us that she is moving back to the place where she used to live, to work at the job that she used to despise and live with her cat in a motel for 4 months. She is completely flabbergasted that we didn't find this a spectacular idea. Whatever. She goes.

She has called me twice in the entire time she has been gone...and that is when she needed Mr. P to go pick up her meds (thank the baby Jesus for pharmaceuticals or she would be even weirder) and then calls me every day checking in on how my doing her a favor is going until I have completed it to her satisfaction. The second time she started this cycle I told her I was annoyed that she only called me to ask for favors and she said, "Yeah, I knew you would be mad about that" and then proceeded to tell me how her cat is sad there is traffic in the parking lot of the motel. I just found out she might be coming back a week early and she said, "Don't change your plans," to which I said, "Yeah, I am not" and she got offended. But in fairness (to her), our conversations aren't that great, so maybe these snippets are why she doesn't call more often:

Mom: When I get back I am going to need a boat trip. (alluding to us taking her out on our boat.)
Me: Should be soon.
Mom: You know, since you are going to be saving all that money on the new house, you should use that to buy a bigger boat.
Me: NO, because mostly on the boat, it is going to be me and Mr. P. Alone. No one else.


Me: Yeah, we are going to put the boat at the marina because the driveway is pretty steep and Mr. P isn't sure our transom will tilt enough. (I am really not sure if those are the right words, but she wouldn't know either...)
Mom: So, you are going to have to park your car in the street?
Me: No, why would you think that?
Mom: Because if it is steep you will have to be in first gear. (my car is a stick shift)
Me: Yeah, but considering that I know how to drive my car, it won't be a problem.


So anyways, mom is coming home soon. Maybe even this weekend.


P.S. To try to help counteract all this pissiness I just sprayed out on the interwebs, I am participating in Relay for Life, and I will even let you try to win some pants if you will donate $10. Full story here.

Monday, April 5, 2010

the story of how I DO NOT have cancer

One of the reasons I took my blogging hiatus is that I knew that Mr. P and I had a battery of medical tests to undergo due to our ever increasing age, and with my colleague dying of cancer and my friend's diagnosis being very poor, I was not in a good headspace to relay what was going on with us. Today I will tell one of those stories now that my brain is functioning a bit more clearly and because the time for my shameless begging for money has finally arrived....

On Mr. P's birthday I went in for my first mammogram. It was relatively uneventful, and the tech told me NOT to freak out if they called me in for more tests because they need a solid baseline and the radiologists really want to get to know my breasts.

I leave, feeling pretty okay about it, and proceed to make a lasagna and Boston cream pie (FROM SCRATCH) for Mr. P's birthday dinner.

That was all on a Tuesday. On Thursday I get a call that the mammogram was abnormal for my right breast and I needed to come in for some spot compression tests. I slowly begin the freak out. I google. I read extensively, and for the MOST part all indicators point towards 'need more baseline info', so while I am nervous, I am not FUHreaking, just regular vanilla freaking.

The next Tuesday I go admit myself into the hospital with bracelet and all to get my spot tests, which were about 30 more pictures of the right breast. The whole time the tech is chit chat chatting about the 5K we BOTH did the Saturday before. SURELY if she sees a ginormous lump she wouldn't be just chitty chatty about her super annoying kid, right? After she is done, she takes the pictures to the doctor, and then comes back and says, "Well, come with me, he would like you to have an ultrasound." gulp.

So they get me situated and my boob all lubed up and the tech says to me, "Let's see if we can find this thing."

fuck. there is something to find. fuck me. I am really glad we bought the car so that I have reliable transportation back and forth to the medical school a few hours away. I am glad my sister lives here so that she can help Mr. P take care of me while I die. I am SO glad that I have been running so that my strength is somewhat built up to withstand all the treatments. fuck. fuck.

The tech focuses on something that I am going cross-eyed trying to see and then she gets up and leaves the room to show the doctor and says he will come and talk to me. What feels like an eternity, while I am cataloguing everything in my mind that I need to tell Mr. P about how I feel about him and our life together, and where our money is, and how he will have to be for our kids, the doctor comes in to tell me...

NO cancer. NO nothing actually. There was a lymph node he wanted a closer look at, but it was perfectly normal. Clean bill of health, see you next year.

I never had cancer, but in my mind I did for 10 minutes and it was excruciating. I thought I could imagine what my colleague's family had been through, and I realize that I felt the extreme tippy tippy top of the iceberg. So, because one day I may actually get the news I was petrifying of receiving, or because one of you might, or because ANYone might, I am participating in Relay for Life on our campus, not this weekend, but next. We have a team and will be walking and walking to raise money. So, what I am now asking of all of you, is help me? HELP me, HELP you. (shameless stealing from that movie with Cuba Gooding and he plays sports and has an agent, with Tom Cruise?)

So here is the link to my Relay "page":

Note the picture of the kid on my page is NOT me or anyone I even know, I just can not figure out how to change it. Back to begging: I know everyone is feeling the pinch, BUT, if you want to donate and can afford a $10 donation, let me know via email or comment and I will enter you into a drawing to win an awesome item from

If you win the drawing, I will buy you something from this site (in the $40 ish range). I picked this as a prize because I am working very hard with running and working out to get healthier to lower my chances of getting cancer, or increasing my odds of beating cancer, and I want all of you to have some super snazzy pants/shorts/capris to get healthy in too!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

so it wasn't a rock afterall.

The weather here this week has been absolutely divine. So great that all I want to do is breath the outside air...and actually right now I have all the doors open (don't tell Mr. P because I guess bugs like to come inside, and he would prefer I just open windows) and am 'working' from the patio.

On Tuesday I just putzed around the house and went running and when I finally couldn't put it off anymore, went in to work to finalize my exam. I took my gym stuff because my circuits class is on Tuesday afternoon. I ended up not allowing myself enough time, so I ended up having to scramble and throw my gym clothes on and run to get to the class on time. I felt a little stone in my shoe and thought that once I got to an ab exercise I would take my shoe off and get it out.

It shifted, so ended up not bothering me so I didn't look for it until after the class. It wasn't a rock afterall.

It was a broken nail. No, not a metal nail like for hanging up pictures, or hammering wood. I looked at my toes, all intact. Looked at my fingers, in tact. I don't know where it came from or whose it was, but ACK. GROSS.

But, that isn't the worst thing I ever found in my shoe. Once, I had a 'rock' in my shoe and when I got to work and checked, and it was actually a

roach. A COCK.ROACH.

The only good thing? It was dead.

(That happened about 15 years ago when I was working graveyard shift at a diner and living at my dad's house in between Mr. P getting out of the Air Force and us starting at school. ahh the good old days.)

Monday, March 29, 2010

so. apparently I ate a sticker.

My bed was the exact.perfect temperature this morning. My alarm went off at 7 and I rationalized that I ran nearly 6 miles yesterday, so I probably SHOULD take the day off of running, or at the very least I should wait and run after my office hours this afternoon.

FINALLY, I drag myself out bed, get cleaned up and finally get dressed. Change because the pants I picked made my ass look big. Change again. (NOTE TO SELF: Your ass is big, get over it.) Grab a yogurt, plum and my last tiny box of Peyton cereal. Fill up water bottle. Drive through Chick Fil A to get a giant soda. Park 1/2mile from office because I didn't get to work in time to get good parking.

Decide to multi-task and eat my plum on my walk. I notice the little produce sticker on one side, but decide that I can't really peel it off with one hand, so I will just eat around it.

Get to office and only the plum pit is left.


Friday, March 26, 2010

I am a WARRIOR. maybe?

After completing the half marathon, we have been trying to decide what is next on our fitness/athletic agenda. We know that eventually our goal is an adventure trip to the Galapagos, where we snorkel, hike, scuba, kayak, ride horses, etc. We think that trip is likely a few years away (it is super pricey), and we have some intermediate goals in of which was the half marathon. (check. and that still feels awesome, by the way.) And another is the Rome marathon in 2012. (yikes, that is less than 2 years away. SCARY.)

Anyway, Mr. P mentioned the other night seeing that one of his Facebook friends was doing this kind of adventure type race, where there is running and mud bogs, and other obstacles that you have to do and he was thinking that sounded pretty damn cool. Then last night the College Kid posted a link to that exact race on my wall (on Facebook) and with that, begins our adventure with more adventurous racing. Warrior racing, as you were.

So, knowing that I have NO upper body strength to speak of and there are a plethora of things to get over in those type races, I googled the best way to gain upper body strength. Any guesses? Fancy equipment? Personal trainer? no and no. Good, old fashioned push-ups. YUCK.

So today I started the push-up workout recommended. Today 3 sets of 10 push-ups. Rest 48 hours. Then 3 sets of 11 push-ups. Rest 48 hours. Repeat adding one rep each time. After two weeks, rest goes to 24 hours. Repeat infinity. I was actually able to do a total of about 14 "real" push ups and I did the rest girly girl style. Then I did some planks. For good measure. Dude, core/arm stuff is HARD. I would way rather run. So, not to forget good, old-fashioned cardio, I am heading to the park for a run in my new running shoes and cool Nike top.

OH, did I mention our first venture into these races? NEXT Saturday, after we do a regular old 5K. I am both excited to try and scared that I will fail, be too fat to get over some obstacle, and/or look like a giant loser out there with all the fit young things.

That just means I have to try, right?

Thursday, March 25, 2010

INappropriate crushing

I love Taylor Swift. There it is out there. I think she is adorable and funny and I love almost all her songs. Yes, I am 40.

Anyway, a couple of college boys from my school created a website devoted to getting a hug from her, she found it, and decided that she might, in fact, give them a hug if they completed a series of challenges and she issued this declaration in her own video message.

SO, today, they will be walking a little old lady across the street. The little old lady is a friend's mom. So, if all goes well, I will be [Hotch-Friend-Friend's Mom-College Boys-Taylor Swift] 4 hug degrees from Taylor Swift.

oh, and yes, I will be there for the filming of said old lady walking.


I wanted pizza for lunch anyway and it is right by the street crossing.

shut up.

ETA: I am in a green top leaning against the brick pillar on the very far can see me if you squint!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

another decision MADE

Remember last year when I almost was VERY neighborly with my sister, but then the super flaky ballroom dance teacher decided not to rent to us? (By the way, her house is STILL on the market. ha.) And then I got all flummoxed and decided to stay in our house for another year?

Well, here we are, round the sun once more and we are officially going to be semi-neighbors with my sister, a mere 1/2 mile! I have already signed the lease on a little house, with many weird amenities like a bathroom with yellow and black tile (a la a bumble bee), washer and dryer in a line NEXT to the stove, NO dishwasher and NO fenced in yard. BUT it is a great location, perfect for walking to football games, my office, outings for pizza and frozen yogurt, and feeding the turtles. Another big plus is that we will be paying about half for our living expenses as we are now (we are starting to save for a down payment on our very own house, yikes), so I just have to learn to be more efficient with my dishes and really suck up to Mr. P so that he is willing to take the dog out at 3am since he will have to be watched...oh, and we have to buy our own refrigerator, but I am kind of excited about that...I am thinking stainless steel with an ice-dispenser!

Now we just have to figure out what we are going to do about the slight (35 day) gap between leases in our current and new abodes....but none of this will even happen for 3 months, ahh, the joys of living in a college town!

Monday, March 22, 2010

March Madness

The last three weeks have been insanely wonderful, so much so, that with all the crud going around the regular world and the interweb world I have felt too guilty to post too much for fear of sounding completely douchey.
  • I got tenure.

  • I ran a half-marathon.

  • I went on a dream vacation with my husband of 21 years.
Any of these things in isolation would have made my month, but all 3? I have it pretty damn good. Plus, when we got home, we got to go play Candyland with a precious pumpkin baby, and I came in FOURTH WINNER!

A few snippets of our trip:

First stop, Grand Caymans, where we went to a turtle farm/conservation center. I choose to believe this little dude is going to be released into the wild, not eaten. The turtles were completely cool, but I left a bit sad about the fate of some of them.

Our last stop was Roatan, Honduras. It was really beautiful, and we snorkeled and snorkeled and then snorkeled some more. All of the gorgeous fish and coral made me even more determined to get to my goal of under 200 pounds so that I feel comfortable enough to get SCUBA certified.

SO, this morning, I weighed in after weeks of debauchery and I am EXACTLY where I was on January 4. So before work this morning, I strapped on my running shoes and went on my first real run since the half. (I ran twice last weekend, but didn't push myself, just sort of cruised around.) I logged back into WeightWatchers. AND so far, I am still within my points for the day. I have given myself a hundred reasons not to stick with the eating right portion of my plan to get healthy, and now that I have had time to reflect on all that is great in my life, I hope to start stacking up the reasons why I should be sticking with the eating plan!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

She is a FREAKING liar! *

14 months.
252 workouts.
785.3 miles.
196 hours.
142,000 calories.

I did all of that in preparation for today. I feel amazing and tired and accomplished and sore and amazing one more time.

3:00:31 was my "Gun Time", but it took me over a minute to cross the starting I should be an official finisher...I will have to wait and see though. I will be disappointed if I missed it by a breath, but it is what it is now. I was feeling amazing until about 10 miles, and then my hip flexors started stiffening, and it was hard to propel myself forward. I ended up walking a bit after each water station., all in the name of "hydrating"...but my time puts me at 13:47 per mile, which is about right for me.

Edited to add: 2:57:56.73 is my official time. I AM OFFICIAL!!! I burst into tears when I saw that I beat my goal of 3 hours...seems my emotions are a bit out of whack. I won't even tell you about how I started the race listening to The Climb by Miley Cyrus and tearing up over how awesome this last week has been for me!

Mr. P was a rock star. He never really trained, he would run on occasion, and he got a time of 2:16ish (he doesn't remember). I think his lack of smoking really helped. He asked me at dinner if I was mad at him, and I do have to say I am a little frustrated...I have run consistently for over a year, and he throws together a few runs and kicks my ass!

But I have to be honest with myself. I am still carrying A LOT of extra weight, and my time should really decrease if I can even get 30 more pounds off....which will be the next thing I tackle along with some speed training.

After we get back from the cruise, that is!

*My iPod decided to be a freak show and be all weird...only gave me credit for 11.5 ish miles. Bitch.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

If I quit you, then maybe this is why...

I am buying the poster for my office.

BUT, you don't have to worry about me telling you about how much I loose* each week, since I am GAINING weight. Yup, I am watching my weight go up. Not high up, but a little up, then I lose it, then a little up, then I lose it. I was SO cocky about how I well I would do in January and February that I asked for a large wicking shirt as my prize for THIS WEEKEND'S HALF MARATHON. I am on track to finish the whole thing whilst jogging (albeit, most people can probably walk faster than I jog after 11 miles).

My goal is to get an 'official' time, which means I have to finish in 3 hours. I did a trial half two weeks ago, and I was over by twelve minutes. (I didn't even lose weight THAT week.) However, I am assured that this course is pretty flat, and gorgeous, and I can use my iPod to keep me from holding my breath just so I don't have to listen to myself pant for 3 hours.

*I was just about to post this, and I wasn't COMPLETELY sure that you guys would know I was being facetious and that spelling makes me SO nuts that I decided to add this disclaimer.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Just a different sort of ass

I am no longer an ASSistant professor, but have been granted promotion and tenure and now hold the rank of ASSociate professor!

Schrodinger's tenure

The letters have left the administrative building and there are 63 of us anxiously awaiting their arrival at our respective departments. It could be after lunch today. It might not be until after lunch tomorrow.

It is official...I either have tenure, or I don't. And right this minute that is seeming so huge to me, because either way my life will never be just the same. I might have the most overwhelming sense of accomplishment and relief that this journey I dragged my family on starting in 2000 was worth it. I will have job security in this crappiest of job times. I will be free to work on whatever research I deem important and I don't have to worry if everyone else thinks it is worthy. Academic freedom. I can run my classrooms the way I want to run them without fear that one pissy student will wreck my evaluation average. I will become a better researcher and teacher without the stress of trying to please everyone. I will have a voice within my department to prevent junior faculty from being bullied and railroaded at whim.

OR, I will be starting almost completely over. I will have to try to find a faculty job in a specialty area in this crappiest of job times. I will have to move away from my kids and my sister. We finally have friends that don't make me want to shoot myself in the face and we would have to try to make new ones. I will have to work at the University that rejected me for another year knowing every second that for whatever reason they did not deem me worthy. I will be devastated because this is OUR school and once we leave we can not ever come back.

I can't wait to get the letter, but once I open it, it is what it is, and there is no more dreaming about what it might be.

Monday, March 1, 2010

when is enough really enough?

First off...let me just assure everyone that I did NOT go all shooty when I was denied alas, I still.don't.know whether I got tenure. However I got word that the decisions have been made, letters printed and are awaiting signatures and 'hopefully' will go out tomorrow. They will come through campus mail and I should know Wednesday after lunch at the very latest. Hopefully. Hopefull.y.

Now that that is cleared up I have two big things that I want to tackle today, and a million little things I want to tell you about because stuff has happened, but let's get the big stuff done today so you can decide whether to block my IP address, or ban me to Reader purgatory, I completely understand if you choose either.

Here goes: I can't live without some of the blogs I read. BUT, there are some blogs that I definitely have to break up with. Some bloggers just, to be completely honest, annoy the fuck out of me, and for some convoluted reason I believed that if someone EVER commented on my blog I OWED them blog loyalty for now and ever more. I was finding that if I opened my Reader and certain people had blogged, I felt dread at reading those posts and then just wouldn't read any posts because I felt all guilty and angsty and blech. I know some people tag blogs at Good, Better and Best and read down as time permits, but I find if I have anything 'unread' I am anxious about that as well.

Here is what is stuck in my craw: I have read posts about what annoys people about blogs, Facebook and Twitter and frankly, I don't give a shit about what people put on Facebook or Twitter...I find the mundane chatter to be interesting. I don't mind knowing about your child's potty progress (chances are I want to know, that is why we are friends on Facebook), or what you are having for snacks on the train. Here is what gets me all upset and twisty: bloggers who don't know their place in the blog hierarchy or WORSE, want to be considered an expert in something whether it be weight loss or running or photography or mothering or beastiality or any combination of the above when they just are not. I don't want to be your fan on Facebook, I don't want to Twitter about your contest, or link to you on my blog unless I WANT TO...I just want to know what makes you tick and how you are and really, who annoyed the fuck out of you and why and what curse words you said (either out loud or in your mind) and maybe who you want to have fantasy sex with (this week I am into the Skipper of the Swedish curling team, YES, I know he is a tiny baby, but he is so pretty.) So that is where my head is at. Charming, no?

Plus, keep in mind that I am very NON-confrontational so don't ask me if you annoyed me, because chances are I will say, "NO, I love your blog" because either I do love your blog or I don't want to read your blog, but I don't want to tell you that I don't want to read your blog because I don't want to hurt your feelings even though I do think you are annoying as hell. I feel better and worse all at the same time. So, on to another issue that is very important to me:

How many t-shirts is the appropriate amount of t-shirts? I have not counted, but I probably have 50, which I know is TOO many. Mr. P says to keep 5, which I know is TOO few. What is the baby bear of t-shirts? AND, for the t-shirts that must depart my wardrobe, do I throw them away, or donate them? Seems weird to donate a t-shirt. But I totally will if that is appropriate.

Monday, February 1, 2010

let the irritating tone commence....

I am going off the air for February. Blogging isn't working for me right now. I am having a hard time with lots of things that I don't really think are mine to blog about, at least until I get stuff straight in my head and I get some clarity and closure on other stuff. The pressure of NOT being able to blog about what I am going through at the moment is bothering me a surprising amount to the point that thinking about blogging makes my guts twist up.

There are other things too: I am not managing my relationships the way I know I can. I am not eating right. I am not running. I am not going to the gym. I am going through the motions to get through my classes, but I am not progressing on research or any of my other responsibilities in that arena. My house is a disaster both from a clean/dirty and organization/CLUTTERFUCK standpoints.

It isn't that I am (not) doing these things BECAUSE of blogging, I just feel like I want a quick fix on control and choosing to step away from blogging is how I choose to do that.

While I am gone I hope to have lost some weight, gotten back on the 1/2 training program, and gotten my house in 'company' shape. We will have signed a new lease. I will go over 100 miles on the brand new car I bought last Friday. (A YELLOW Chevy Cobalt)*. I will have participated in a faculty meeting that divides our faculty, and I will have had to choose a side. I will have had a mammogram, celebrated Mr. P's birthday, run in 4 races (one 10K, three 5K's), finished all the reviews I have piled on my desk, submitted a proposal for a grant, and hopefully, will have a letter from the University Prez stating I have tenure.

Catch you on the flip side of February, hopefully a less melodramatic flake!

*(That purchase, while I love the car, is an example of how I am kind of not myself lately and I need to re-center, to be all hippy dippy about it.)
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