Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Ooh Rah! Semper Fi! Devil Dog! Yut Yut!

Today is a very special day for Michael. After serving for 20 years in the United States Marine Corps, he is now officially retired.

I'm so excited for him, I'm so happy for him, and I'm so proud of him. Although I haven't been around for all 20 years of his service (he enlisted when I was just 8 years old, crazy to think about, I know), I have been around for the past three years.

During this time, I've been lucky enough to learn so much about the Marines. I have had the opportunity to visit places that mean so much to Michael, and to our country as well. I've attended a Marine Corps Ball in celebration of the annual birthday bash, I've stayed at Quantico Base and visited the brand new Marine Corps museum, and I've spent many days at Camp LeJune and Johnson in North Carolina. I've heard wonderful stories of amazing people that Michael has met along the way, and even received a lovely wedding letter from Oliver North congratulating Michael and I on our new life together. Through these experiences as a Marine wife, I've been inspired to write a long-distance relationship guide for military wives as my final field project for my masters degree (as many of you know, Michael and I were apart for quite some time before he was able to move to Utah).

It has been an amazing journey for me, and I'm sure an even more awesome one for Michael. I have such a respect for who he is, what he's given our country in terms of service, his personal values, and the standards he holds himself to. Simply said, my husband is an amazing man, and today I celebrate him and all he has given. I love you Michael and am so blessed to have you in my life. Congratulations on 20 years as one of the few, the proud, the Marines.

Monday, March 30, 2009

In Your Easter Bonnet, with all the Snowflakes Upon It

Um, what's going on with the weather? For those of you NOT living in Utah, you're probably unaware of the fact that it is still winter here, and spring seems to be eons away.

Snow? It's the end of March! Yesterday morning Michael and I (along with the rest of Salt Lake City) woke up to a thick blanket of the cold, wet, white, fluffy stuff. Not only was everything covered in snow, but it was STILL snowing. The roads were a mess, the birds were like "Seriously?!" and my mood sank to depths of gray, much like the color of the world outside my window.

I hate snow when there's supposed to be green grass and tulips blooming outside. I hate that I can't pack away the sweaters and dig out the skirts and t-shirts because even though the calendar says it's spring, Mother Nature is exerting her dominance.

I think Christmas and Easter should swap locations on the calendar. How many years now have we all been "dreaming of a white Christmas" only to receive a few little sympathy flakes. And yet, when Easter rolls around and we're supposed to hunt for eggs outside in the grass while little girls run around in dresses and bonnets, we're all too busy griping about how cold and yucky it is outside. Let's just switch the holidays and then Christmas can feel more like Christmas and we won't have to be disappointed in the lack of spring-like weather for Easter.

Two more snow storms this week. One scheduled for Wednesday (yup that's right, April fools day). I guess the joke is on us. I know we need the water, and for that I'm grateful, but I NEED SUNSHINE! And a TAN! I am so white it's scary. Besides, a little vitamin D would do us all some good.

*sigh* You won't see me building a snowman any time soon. Maybe I'll build a snow bunny and some frozen Easter eggs. HUMPH!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

There's Always a Room for Improvement

The house projects continue. Yesterday we primed and painted the bathroom off of the kitchen, and Michael installed a beautiful new light fixture in our entry way. We spent way too much time at Lowe's and Home Depot picking out a beautiful new Venetian brass faucet for the bathroom we painted, along with new towel bar, lighting, additional brass accessories and matching brass knobs for the bottom cupboards and drawers on the vanity to replace all the silver. I'm excited, Michael is exhausted.

We've had quite the day. In addition to putting in a new ceiling fan, removing a toilet, and cutting a new hole in the wall to fit the new light fixture, there's a mess in the hallway and my kitchen table is covered in everything from tools to accessories. Thank heaven we don't have to update the cupboards or counter tops. Lucky for us, the previous owners remodeled this bathroom and put in granite countertops and nice wood work before we moved in. At least that's one expense we won't have to endure.

That being said, I really can't wait till the house projects are done. The bedroom in the basement still remains tore up as we haven't had a chance to start working on that because we've been consumed with upstairs projects. I know it will be totally worth it, but I can be impatient and want it done now :) I guess the good thing about doing it ourselves, (besides doing it right) is we'll certainly have a new appreciation for it once it's all done.

Friday, March 27, 2009

An Epilogue...

Not having anything particular to say today, I decided a trip back in time might be fun, so I'm sharing a poem I wrote about Michael before I actually met him in person. We had been talking for about a month at this time over the phone, internet, through email, chat, etc... and somehow I just had this feeling. I couldn't decribe it, but I knew my life was about to change, and for some reason I wasn't scared about it but rather, excited.

I really love this piece and I've read it several times since I wrote it and have left it untouched- which is pretty significant for me because when I happen to revisit my pieces, I always find a reason to edit this or change that. That being said, I decided to post what I consider an "oldie but a goodie" from my writing reverie:

An Epilogue...

It was a journey I had taken, long ago in my mind,
A fate richly deserved linked to a destiny denied
A solemn, tempting sweetness of which I only had a taste
My plate crashing to the floor in weakness
Sugar melting in the heat of haste

I tried to regain the feeling through expeditions incomplete
I wound up cold and broken on the dark and hollow streets
I searched for missing pieces to make my body whole
But all I found was temporary, a thrift shop for my soul

I almost gave up looking, fragile from previous attempt
But there was a softness hidden in ocean eyes,
Shielded by the secrets they once kept
An honesty untainted, too prominent to regret
A gentleness so subtle, too familiar to forget

It was when I wasn't looking or even trying to find
That he came along and took me, body, soul, and mind
And willingly I go, eager to be led
By this hand so strong and handsome, yet soft enough to mend

I feel the pieces gathering, longing to be set free
A release of the shards protruding that have alienated me
A patchwork canvas painted with colors of my past
Will hang in an empty hallway, as I shut the door at last

A journey to be started, a renaissance of time
A fate richly deserved linked to a destiny that is mine
A solemn, tempting sweetness, no other I wish to taste
My plate crashing to the floor in weakness
Hearts melting in the heat of pace

Thursday, March 26, 2009

The Shack

Last week I received a phone call from my mother (which isn't out of the ordinary, as we talk often through the week). Usually there isn't any purpose in calling one another, other than the usual "Hello, what's going on there? Anything new with you?" type of stuff. But this phone call was a little different. As soon as I answered, I heard my mother on the other line saying "Hi, I'm calling because I just finished reading a book and I want you to read it."

Now my mother is an avid reader. She has been a teacher for over 13 years, and has had a love for literature as long as I can remember. She was always buying me books and reading to me aloud when I was younger. She's even the reading specialist in the school district where she teaches. She's often asked by the school board to present work shops to other teachers on how to teach literature. My mother is amazing at what she does, and so when she tells me there's a book she wants me to read, I tend to listen :)

She warned me that this wasn't just any "normal" book, and probably one I would never pick up and read on my own. She also warned me that when I started reading it, I would probably find myself thinking "Really? My mother wanted me to read this?" But she assured me that I just needed to stick with it, and in the end I would be glad I read it. She told me in that stern, mother knows best voice "You're going to start reading it and wonder why I wanted you to read it, but you just have to finish it. Promise me Michelle, you'll read this book. I even told Grandma she needs to read it."

Woah? Grandma too? Okay, she must REALLY like this book. My grandmother reads a lot too, but her taste in books differs completely from my mothers. But obviously my mom saw something special in this story. Special enough that she wanted to share it with her mother and daughter.

"Okay Mom, I'll read it. What's it about?"

"I'm not going to tell you what it's about, you'll just have to see."

"Yeah but surely the back cover of the book gives you somewhat of an idea, which I'll end up reading anyway, so at least tell me a little bit..."

"It's just a wonderful story, Michelle. And it's not one that you will expect. All I'm going to tell you is that it involves a man, and something horrible happens to him. And this horrible thing that happens takes place at a shack. One day he gets a letter in his mailbox from Papa telling him to meet him at the shack."

"Papa? As in his dad?"

"Papa, as in God."

"Uh, God? He gets a note from God signed Papa?"

"He and his wife use the term Papa for God, and yes, he gets a note in his mailbox from 'Papa' telling him to meet him up at the shack. And that's all I'm going to tell you. Go get the book and read it. I would give you my copy but I've already given it to one of the ladies I work with."

"Mom, are you serious?"

"Just read it, Michelle."

"Okay, I'll read it!"

And so, I read it. And now I understand exactly where my mother was coming from. And now, just as my mother told me, I'm telling you to read it.

I know, I know, what you're thinking because I was thinking the same thing. I'm not affiliated with any specific religion. I don't go to church on Sundays, and I'm not the type of person to pick up a book about God. But- I am a spiritual person, and I do believe in God, and because I trust my mother more than anyone, I read this book. Even if you don't believe, read this book.

I'm not going to tell you what it's about other than what you've read in this post. After reading this book, I appreciated even more that my mother only told me the little amount that she did.

And so for today, I leave you with this... read The Shack. You can learn about it here: http://theshackbook.com/

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


That's the only way to describe how I feel today. MEH. It was one of those mornings where I was sleeping SOOOO good (probably because of the two NyQuil liquid gel tabs I took last night so I could breath through my nose AND sleep). I heard Michael's phone go off to signal it was time to start the day, but I rolled back over and didn't hear him get up, take a shower, get dressed, brush his teeth or anything. The next thing I knew, he was leaning over the bed for a good morning/ good bye I'm off to work kiss and it was time for me to get my tired butt out of my big, comfy, perfectly satisfying bed.

I have a love/hate relationship with mornings like this. I LOVE when I'm sleeping so well and my bed feels perfect. I HATE when all of this must be disrupted simply because I must go work for the man for 8 hours so I can afford life. SUCKS.

Many of you who know me understand that I prefer to be busy. It makes my day go by so much faster when it is jam packed with meetings, projects, places to be, things to do, etc... so on days like this when I have no meetings, 8 hours seems like 16 hours. And to make matters worse, my head is pounding so I feel like my eyes are going to pop out of their sockets any given second (wouldn't that be gross).

So yeah, to sum it up, I'm having a MEH kinda day. And this blah weather isn't helping.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

My Tax Dollars Hard at Work- Except on Sunday

I was so wrapped up in painting this weekend, that I forgot to share with you something that happened on my way to Target on Sunday. Something very disturbing, which pissed me off to no end.

I am a dog lover. I have a cute, sweet, cuddle bug of my own and I love her more than anything. She is such a comfort to me when I come home from work and her little tail is wagging so hard and all she wants to do is jump on me and slobber me with kisses. I adore every second with her, even on days when she's been naughty.

That being said, I have a soft spot for dogs- especially lost, confused ones. And I just so happened to run into a lost puppy while running errands on Sunday. This little guy was small, maybe a Shitzu, but hadn't had a hair cut in a while. His fur was a mixture between tan and white, and he had big brown eyes. Let me re-phrase that. He had big brown, I'm scared to death because I'm lost and almost got hit by a car twice on this busy street, where the hell is my mom eyes.

I could tell he was freaked out beyond belief. And given where he was on the sidewalk, he was not close to home. Now granted, maybe home was down the street and around the corner, but he was far enough away that he was confused. He kept running up and down the sidewalk, not sure which way was the right way, and he had just stared death in the face by darting into a busy street full of cars not paying attention. Luckily, he did make it to the sidewalk.

I decided this little guy needed help so I pulled off the street and tried to see through my window if he was wearing a collar. I figured if he had a collar on, perhaps there was an address or phone number that could provide me of this little guy's home. But- he had so much hair, I couldn't tell if he had a collar on or not. I got out of my car and tried to walk towards him (at this time, he was shivering on the sidewalk- probably in fear). As best I could I called him to me but he was so upset he ran in the opposite direction.

Not wanting to scare him more, and not wanting him to run into the street again, I didn't chase him. But he was a fast little guy. He ran a good portion up the street and then plopped down on the sidewalk again in a look of sheer confusion. So I tried again: I got back in my car, drove closer to him, and tried to call him over to me. This time, he turned around and ran back down the street to where we had started.

At this point, I figured it was a lost cause. He was obviously shaken up and didn't want anyone near him. I can imagine that not knowing where your house is would be quite a scary experience. I decided to call the police assuming that Animal Control would be closed since it was Sunday. The response I got was maddening.

Basically the dispatcher told me that Animal Control was closed on Sunday. DUH. Then she told me that they don't respond to calls like mine. Let me make it clear that the fire station was right across the street from where this dog was. They wouldn't even have to break up the shiny, red engine. But no, I was told good luck but they wouldn't do anything.

When I asked why they wouldn't do anything I was told it was because they wouldn't have a place to keep the animal. Well... true, if the animal didn't have a collar, they would be stuck with him. But I suspect there is a collar and tag on this dog, and his owner is somewhere hoping that he'll get a call that his best friend has been found. I was still told no, and she once again repeated that Animal Control is closed on Sundays.

What infuriates me the most is that you can be charged for a Class B Misdemeanor if you find a lost animal and don't take it to the shelter. So either way, you are screwed if you find a lost animal on Sunday. I mean, really... nobody wants to respond to my call because it's their day off, but if I catch the dog and don't take it to a shelter, then I get charged (did I mention the shelter is closed on Sunday?) LAME.

And so what if it's Sunday?! It's not like police and fire depts aren't going to respond if a human were lost: "Your daughter is missing? Oh, sorry. We don't respond to those calls on Sunday."
I mean, what if you had a bear hanging out in your backyard, or a huge, poisonous snake under your house, or a rat infestation. "You're just going to have to wait it out ma'am, and call back on Monday when Animal Control is available." God forbid a cougar decides to turn your garage into it's lair on a Sunday.

Give me a break. I guess if you're a pet owner, teach your animals not to venture out on their own if it's a Sunday. Because if they get lost, you're outta luck.

I never was able to catch the dog. I hope his owner found him, or that he found his way home unharmed. Damn city. I'd like to know if my tax dollars are paying for coffee and donuts cuz it sure the hell isn't going towards anything on Sundays.

Monday, March 23, 2009

You Want What Color?

Quick update on the house projects:
We got the living room painted. Well, MOSTLY painted. I helped tape everything off, did trim work, and even managed to apply the second coat minus one of the walls, but Michael did most of the painting (because he's much better at it than I am, even though his painting lesson consisted of telling me it's no different than painting my nails....wrong).

Anyway- I LOVE the color. If you're interested, it's called Gobi Desert and it's a very warm, complimentary neutral. I think it will go fantastic with the trim and crown molding, and it looks great with the carpet. The only thing that didn't go over to well was the color we chose for the accent wall. We wanted one of the walls in the family room to be a little bit darker than the other three. So naturally, we selected a slighter darker color within the same color family as Gobi Desert. We even bought a tester and painted a swatch on the wall before buying the entire gallon. After evaluating the test swatch, we were certain it was going to look great.

Saturday night we primed all the walls and applied the first coat of the Gobi Desert on everything but the accent wall. Sunday we painted our accent wall Harvest Brown. And let me tell you, it looked horrible. I didn't like it immediately, but Michael encouraged me to wait for it to dry before jumping to conclusions. So we did. And I still hated it after it dried. Michael hated it too. In fact, he compared it to what you might find in a baby's diaper. And although disgusting, I think Michael's descriptive way of putting it gives you a fairly accurate visual of what our ASSent, uh I mean accent wall looked like :)

After getting the other three walls perfect, it was totally disappointing to having primed and painted this wall to have it end up looking crappy (pardon the pun), but that's life when it comes to paint. Trial and error right?

So, we decided on a color that we were 100% certain we would like (we knew we liked it because it is the same accent color that is painted in our living room and the previous owners had left us a paint can of it in the basement). Michael grabbed the lid with the color info on it, and we were off to Home Depot to get our gallon of Kodiak Gray. You'd think our paint problems were solved right? Wrong. Apparently, the color we had was so old that the line of paint no longer had the base color we needed to create the exact color. 2 hours and 4 different test gallons later (Home Depot is great because they didn't charge us for any of the test gallons it took during the attempt to reach our original color) we went home with a color that is as close as we're going to get to the original color.

Because we had painted the wall, it again had to be primed so Michael took care of that. Therefore, tonight is the big night we break out all the paint supplies and try this a second time. I really hope second time is the charm in this case, because if I've learned anything this weekend, it's that painting sux. Too much prep work, too much clean up time, and the house smells of....well, wet paint lol!

UPDATE: The first coat of paint looks awesome! I am hopeful the second coat (to be applied this evening) will finish off the room. I have no doubts :) Thank goodness for finding the right color!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Home Improvement Projects

Oh boy- Michael and I are gearin' up for a day full of bead board, primer, paint, trim, crown molding, and even new toilets (I know, exciting isn't it).

I think we might even be getting the cute porch swing that matches our house that I've had my eye on since we moved in.

There's still lots more that we're going to be doing over the next few months like: remodeling the downstairs bathroom, new windows, plantation shutters, new garage door, vinyl fencing on the sides of the house, staining the deck, tiling the master bathroom and updating the vanities in there, putting in a closet organization system in our bedroom, remodeling the kitchen, paving an additional driveway on the side of the house, replacing light fixtures, electrical work, adding a cute lamp post to the yard....and the list goes on and on. BUT- we're off to a good start, and got two major projects out of the way before we moved in (thank goodness).

I managed to finally unpack and charge up the digital cam so I'll post pictures of our progress and finished projects. Hopefully we won't have any major disasters, but if so, I'll try to capture those too. Aren't home improvements fun? Here's to religiously watching HGTV for the next few months :)

Oh and good news! I think I finally decided on a color for the family room :)

Friday, March 20, 2009

Today's Accomplishments

Today I managed to:
  • Register both mine and Michael's birthdays with Disney parks so we can get in free if we ever end up there on our b-day.
  • Go to Westminster to be measured for my cap and gown. I get to pick up everything including my master's hood in May- so I guess in a sense, this is a bigger accomplishment considering it is my masters degree :)
  • Have lunch with a former co-worker. We went to Dask's for Greek food. It was yummy, and the company and conversation was delightful.
  • Get some much needed vitamin D on my cheeks, arms and neck. Oh how good the sun feels kissing my skin after a long, gray winter.
  • Paint color swatches of three different shades on the walls in my living room. I'm horrible with decisions so my walls currently look like a patchwork quilt as I have about 8 different squares of colors painted in various spots throughout the room. I'm evaluating all of them in both natural sunlight and artificial. Hey- I want to make sure I pick a good one, and I refuse to paint until I'm satisfied with the choice I've made. Poor Michael... his patience with me is truly amazing.
  • Start a yummy dinner that is now simmering in the crock pot. I wanted to have a nice home cooked dinner ready for Michael when he got home considering he took me out for steak and shrimp last night.
  • Play frisbee with KeeLee in the backyard. I think she's excited the sun is out too.

The only thing I didn't manage to do today was pick a paint color and buy a car. Shucks. I really wanted to talk to more salesmen today :P

I think I'll spend the rest of this late afternoon reading my book while I wait for Michael to get home from work. Oh how I love the quietness of evening, especially when that evening is that of a Friday. I have two glorious, free days ahead of me. I think I've mentioned before how I live for the weekends :)

Thursday, March 19, 2009

The Audi is Outtie

Car Shopping. UGH. I hate the thought of it. I hate the salesmen. I hate haggling over price, payment, etc...

And what I hate most is that I HAVE to do it. Like tonight. Like Right NOW.
As in, I'm leaving work after I hit "post" to this blog so I can go pick up Michael (so I don't have to experience the Hell of car shopping alone).
As in, within the next 30 minutes, I'll be on some car lot with a sleazy, overly eager salesman telling me exactly what car I can't live without, how much I'm going to enjoy it, and that I can in fact afford it.
As in, I'll need a good stiff drink before the night is over.
As in I'm feeling sick to my stomach.

Lovely. Just what I wanted to do.

I'll give you the update tomorrow if I survive.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


Last night Michael and I settled into bed and turned on the TV to relax. We started watching the History Channel (a channel that is often viewed in my home in addition to the Discovery Channel, Animal Planet, etc...). I can be a bit of a science geek, especially when it comes to anything related to the solar system or planet Earth's mysteries.

As the show started, we found ourselves consumed in a documentary all about a barren desert on the other side of the Andes Mountains that had been waterless for what was assumed to be millions of years. However, man made tools were popping up across the desert (much like arrow heads). These finds baffled scientists because we all know that man cannot survive without water. And if water hadn't existed in this desert for millions of years, how could humans have lived here?

Well- during a search of this wasteland, scientists came upon a stone cave where they found traces of Chinchilla dung and grass nests that when tested, turned out to be 11,000 years old (yes, in simpler terms, it was 11,000 year old poop). But it was so cool because this was proof of life! Meaning, this land once had water and hadn't always been the desert it was once believed to be.

Where am I going with all of this? Planet Earth. Earth is amazing, and everyday mysteries are being solved, and new ones are discovered. It's almost difficult to fathom that we live in a place that is billions of years old. And guess what, we weren't the first ones here :) So many organisms existed before us, and the Earth looked much different than it appears to us today. I love learning about this place I call home, what it was like billions of years before I got here, and what it might be like millions of years after I'm gone.

That being said, I'm totally excited to also know what is happening on Earth right now. Which is why I'm so excited for Disney to release the movie EARTH on April 22nd, which happens to be Earth Day. This movie will be exciting for all kinds of families with adults and children of all ages. I can't wait to go see it.

If you'd like to preview the film, visit:

See you at the movies on Earth Day :)

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

When a Good Commute Turns Bad

Okay Utah drivers, listen up. YOU SUCK!

My husband laughs when he gets in the car with me. Usually because I end up screaming my head off at the jackass who cuts me off, the woman more consumed in her cell phone conversation than she is the lines on the road, and the mini van going 30 mph in a 60 mph zone. I'm glad he finds my road rage comical. I on the other hand, I am sick of putting up with idiots who belong on a bike instead of in a car.

To the red Oldsmobile who was riding my ass this morning, pay attention: I WAS GOING THE SPEED LIMIT YOU ASSHOLE! And, I wasn't taking up space in the fast lane because I was in the middle lane. If you want to go 90 mph, get in the fast lane! Don't get up on my ass trying to force me to speed up when I'm the one abiding to the speed limit, go around me. The fast lane was WIDE open so if you want to fly down the road with your ass on fire, get in the appropriate lane instead of trying to threaten me in mine. And what business do you have driving 90 mph anyway? Jerk.

To the white Chrysler doing 40 in a 65 zone: SPEED THE HELL UP or learn to ride a bike. My guess is that the majority of the people on the road this morning were trying to get to work. You might even be one of these commuters. However, we'd all like to arrive at work BEFORE CHRISTMAS! But because I refuse to drive like the red Oldsmobile above, I'll go around you. But seriously, if you can't handle the suggested speed limit, do us all a favor and take the bus.

To the silver Lexus: nice work *claps* I appreciate the fact that when you realized I was going slightly faster than you, you moved over into a lane moving slower. I didn't have to ride your ass like the red Oldsmobile would have, and I didn't have to go around you like I did the white Chrysler. Instead, you were actually PAYING ATTENTION and realized you felt comfortable driving slightly slower than the rest of us so you kindly moved out of our lane. AND- you used your blinker to indicate your lane change. I almost fainted when that happened because, let's face it, WHEN does that happen in Utah? So again, nice work. If I had prize to award, you would have been today's winner.

To the rest of you, please visit: https://driversed.com/courses/. And in the meantime, get the hell off the road.

Oh and by the way, happy St. Patrick's Day. Don't go getting all wasted tonight and try to drive home. If this is your plan, then please fore go the above link, and instead visit: http://www.alcoholalert.com/drunk-driving-consequences.html.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Freaking Out a Little

This morning I received a phone call from the Utah Higher Education Association. Basically, Westminster didn't send them proof of enrollment for my final semester in my masters program, and therefore UHEA was sending me a bill to start payment on my student loans. Technically, I have 6 months AFTER my graduation date to start paying back the gobs of money I owe the gov'ment for gettin' myself an edju-ma-cation. Fun stuff.

I called Westminster this morning and they agreed to send enrollment verification off to UHEA so they quit trying to bill me before I'm done with school. That being said, I'm still freaking out and here's why:

I haven't started paying back my loans for my undergrad degree. Why? Because I graduated right after September 11th happened, and couldn't get a job for 6 months. I asked for an economic forbearance due to A) lack of job, and B) lack of sufficient funds once I got my first crappy paying job out of college.

THEN- I went back to school in 2006 to get my masters. Basically, if you are in school, you aren't required to make payments on your loans. So UHEA carried over all my loans from my BA and combined them with the loans I was taking out to complete my MPC. I'm a few months away from having that all done, which means as soon as I'm finished, the 6 month count down to repayment time begins. Thus, my 6 month countdown to total panic begins as well.

I don't even want to tell you what I owe on student loans. Westminster is an expensive school, and although I had a full ride for my BA, I still had to take out student loans to live on while I was trying to complete a 5 year program in 4 years (my scholarship was only good for 4 years). That meant I didn't have time to work. So yes, I lived off student loans and credit cards.

Let me sum things up by saying I will be making a substantial monthly payment till I'm about 55 years old. Oh the nice car I could buy with that chunk o' money. I could remodel my kitchen 3 times over, I could do TONS of things... but instead, I decided to get myself S.M.R.T. Now I'm just in need of the salary that compliments the graduate degree, and the oodles of debt I'm in.

Why isn't education free? Think about it. All Americans should have the right to receive an education. And although many would argue that we do- in all reality, we don't. There are TONS out there who want an education and can't afford it. I'm finding out, I am one of those people :) I just found out AFTER getting the education, BEFORE I saw the price tag.

Ya know, I knew all along I would have to pay back the loans I was taking out. But a part of me thought, "It'll be okay, because I'll have my fancy degree by then, and that means I'll have an awesome paying job, and I'll be able to afford the payments so yeah, give me those loans, I'm going to school dammit!"

What a lovely little bubble I lived in. Well, it's popped folks, and reality stings. And I'm dreading those little monthly statements I'll be receiving just in time for Christmas.

If you're thinking of going back to school, good for you. If you have to take out student loans to do it, be careful. And really consider the ratio of salary vs. cost of school. Will you be getting that big fancy corner office and high paying salary once you have the degree you're thinking of getting? If so, go for it. If not, don't rush getting your degree. Take it a class at a time, and pay for it as you go. I think if I could do it all over again, I would have done that. That's probably the MOST valuable thing I learned in college :)

Friday, March 13, 2009

I Don't Even Know Where to Start

Let's get one thing straight (okay, maybe more than one thing):

  • For starters, I don't like "super hero" movies. And yes, I do use the term "super heroes" lightly (it was hard enough trying to sit through Dark Knight).
  • Second of all, I don't like movies where the plot is based on these so called "super heroes" saving New York, the world, the universe, etc... from bad guys, nuclear devastation, zombies, or whatever else "super heroes" are supposed to save us from.
  • Third- I don't like watching ooey, gooey, gory violence where people's heads get bashed in over and over with an ax, or where someone gets their arms sawed off, or little girls get eaten by dogs (I'm getting nauseated just thinking about it now).
  • Fourth (yes there's more) I don't enjoy watching an eyeless super human who glows blue and walks around with his flacid penis swinging in the wind.

If you haven't figured out what I'm talking about yet, it's the horrible, wretched, never should have been written, directed, or produced movie "The Watchmen" (a film that should otherwise be titled "Watch This and Regret Wasting Three Hours of Your Life on This Shit").

I don't even know where to begin. You might notice that I'm writing this post at 11:30 PM because I can't go to sleep until I vent about how flipping ridiculous the last three hours of my life have been. I know, I know, I just wrote about how awful "Rachael Getting Married" is, but I would gladly watch that five times in a row before seeing "The Watchmen" again.

We begin at 5:30 this afternoon when I talk to my friend David. He tells me that he and Tracy are going to see "The Watchmen" tonight, and Michael and I are invited to join them if we like. I hadn't heard anything about the film but Michael's eyes lit up as soon as I said the name of the movie so I decided to google it to see if there was a movie trailer I could watch. There was, and it didn't really tell me much about the movie other than 1-it was about a glowing blue super human, 2- it looked totally lame and 3- by lame I mean a total guy movie that would be nothing but a silly plot with lots of explosions and men in masks pretending to be more awesome than they really are.

HOWEVER- Michael is really great to sit through chick flicks with me. He usually lets me pick out the movies we see, he goes shopping with me and doesn't nag when I want to try on a billion sweaters that look just like ones I already own. THEREFORE- I decided to be a good wife and agreed to go to the movie (even though I was 99.999% sure it was going to suck ass and I would hate it). Oh the sacrifices we make for the people we love.

OH.MY.GOD. I have never Never NEVER endured sitting through such a horrible movie in my ENTIRE life (probably becuase I make a huge effort to never watch these types of movies for that specific reason). Not only did it keep going and going and going and going and going and going and going and (you get the idea), it was miserable, disgusting, and although I'm ransacking my vocabulary here, I can't seem to find the words putrid enough to describe it.

Three house later we step out of the theatre and my mood is ill, foul, and almost as bad as this movie was. I live for the weekends. Specifically Friday nights because it's the one night where I can be excited that I have two full days off ahead of me. The night where I let all the tensions of the week behind me go, and I exhale and enjoy. I guess I'm still waiting to enjoy this Friday (I might be another seven days out).

I had to come home and take a hot shower to cool off. I seriously couldn't be more pissed off that I sat through this crap. Needless to say, Michael is fired from picking movies. However, he did apologize to me in the car, expressing that he didn't know how horrible it was going to be. In his defense, he really didn't know it was going to be as bad as it was. But he's still fired from picking movies for at least three years (one year for each hour of pain I suffered watching this crap tonight).

If I could review this piece of crap show, (and thank God I can't because there isn't a newspaper out there that could print the words I'd have to use) there wouldn't be enough negative stars to rate this movie.

Trust me, don't see it. Just don't. And if you have children, don't allow them to see it. Really. There's naked man parts for three hours, brutal violence where the cameras hold nothing back, and a horrible sex scene where Little Miss Sunshine and Batman's wanna be brother get it on in a fly-mobile to a horrible version of the song "Hallelujah". People who went to see this movie should be fired from going to see movies (but since I went, I can't really support that statement so never mind).

Anyway, I'm going to try to go to bed now and dream of rainbows and unicorns and fluffy little puppies with cute noses and bright eyes and soft fur- basically anything to make me feel better than I do now.

Dear God, please grant me the serenity to accept the movies I cannot change, the courage to stay away from the ones I can, and the wisdom to never let my husband pick another movie as long as it's one we'll be watching together.

Missing North Carolina

I miss North Carolina. There's this empty space in my soul that longs to have it back. So much of my life happened there... so many important things in my life. I fell in love in North Carolina and with North Carolina. It was my place of refuge when I had nowhere else to go, when I had to get away from Utah (and so often I HAVE to get away from Utah). And I think every time I had to leave, I left of a part of me behind.

I love the smell of the air here and the way the humidity makes the sun appear like a giant grapefruit ready to burst. I love how storms roll through in the mid afternoons and evenings and how it rains. It rains like I've never seen it rain before. I love the tall grass that speckles the sand dunes on the shores of breathtaking beaches, and the old wooden fences that line these dunes that are now practically covered from sand and falling down. So much character. There's something about the beauty of this place that is unlike any other. It's not a tropical paradise, but that's what makes it paradise.

Last night Michael and I were unpacking some of his boxes that remain in our basement when we came across two clear rubber maid containers full of objects disguised in packing paper. They were heavy to lift and then Michael realized that these containers cradled the shells we had gathered off the coast of the Outer Banks, Beaufort and Sand Dollar Island.

Michael carried the two containers into the guest bedroom in the basement where I'm decorating with a beach theme. He placed them on the bed and I opened the container. Immediately I could smell the beach, the sand, the salt, and I begin to unwrap the delicate shells carefully. I was flooded with memories of when we gathered these shells.

It was in August, and Michael and I got up early to drive to Beaufort (not a long drive from his home on base in Jacksonville). I dressed in my swim wear and wrapped a lava skirt around my waist, put on flip fops, a tank top, sunglasses, tied my hair back and grabbed a towel. Michael put on his swim trunks and loaded up the trunk with the shelling gear (a large beach bucket to carry the treasures we were hoping to find) flippers, goggles, snorkeling mask, and sunscreen (mostly for him because the Italian in me doesn't burn too often).

We had to make a stop at the local Walgreen's in Emerald Isle so I could get a pair of cheap aqua shoes. Some spots on the Outer Banks (particularly the good shelling spots) don't have the ideal soft beach sand. Instead, you end up walking on a bed of shell fragments and they can hurt when the under tide is constantly pulling them out from under your feet, thus my need for the aqua shoes. I also managed to buy a deck of playing cards that had pictures of my favorite places in North Carolina, and two ceramic refrigerator magnets that had a boat and lighthouse on them.

Upon arriving in Beaufort, we caught the ferry heading to Sand Dollar Island and there our adventure began. We spent close to two hours on the small island and it's crazy because you feel like you are walking out in the middle of the ocean. The island is basically a strip of sand that runs approximately the length of a football field (it feels much smaller than that when tide is up and you're surrounded by nothing but ocean on all sides). But there you can find the most wonderful sand dollars. Of course we left the live ones (you can tell they are live because they are actually reddish brown and fuzzy on the bottom). The dead ones are the hard white ones that most people are familiar with. They're not easy to find because the sand tends to cover them up, but Michael put on his snorkel mask and took to the deeper ends of the sand bar, while I put on my aqua shoes and scoured the more shallow waters. In all, we collected 12 sand dollars that day, of various shapes and different shades. We were very pleased.

From Sand Dollar island, we caught our ferry and took a trip over to Shackleford island where it was time to get down to some serious shelling business (say that three times fast). Upon departing the ferry, Michael and I made our way to the point of the island where you can see nothing but ocean. The waves are giant and every time they crash upon the shore, remnants of a life unknown to us cover the sand. Many people rummage through this shell debris but Micheal and I dove into the waters to find the much larger prizes.

Michael is a much better sheller than I am. He'd surface the waters with a giant white or yellow shell almost every time he'd come up for air. I played it safer and stayed close to the shore, picking up the large shells that tide would deliver to my hands. It was a wonderful day. There's something magical about holding a shell, wondering what creature made it home, and what parts of the ocean floor this shell has been delivered from. When it was time to catch the ferry that would take us back to Beaufort, most of the tourists that had spent the day swimming in calmer waters were admiring our bucket full of huge conch shells, tiger shells, and queen helmet shells. We were very proud of our treasures.

Now, almost 8 months later, I am in our basement unpacking those meaningful shells. And with that, I'm unwrapping memories of not only that day, but of North Carolina in general. There's something to be said for this wonderful place. For me, it's a place unlike any other, full of rich blue coastal waters, rolling dunes of soft white sand, wooden beach houses in shades of coral, turquoise, yellows and purples. It's a land of flip flops, swim suites, and meals in modest diners overlooking the Atlantic coast. There's a smell in the air here, of ship wrecks and seaweed, hush puppies and sweet tea. The light is different in North Carolina. The sun seems richer, the stars seem brighter, and there's always a light house to guide you home. HOME.

I think that's what I miss the most...

Thursday, March 12, 2009

So Many Reasons, So Much to Love

There are so many things I love about Michael. For instance, he was sweet enough to buy me fresh flowers last night, among a basket full of other miscellaneous items at Target. I needed a few things so when he got home I mentioned to him that I wanted to go to the store (Target is my favorite place to go if I have grocery/home shopping to do). Instead of saying something like "Do I have to go?" or "Wouldn't you rather go by yourself?" he just said "Okay, want me to drive?" and we were off.

I love the fact that when I walked through the automatic doors and was immediately drawn to the fresh flowers display located next to the fruits and veggies expressing that I wanted to look for a second, he didn't say "Come on, we don't need those." Instead, he let me spend 5 minutes looking at all the different kinds of flowers, evaluating which ones looked like they would last the longest, and what types and colors there were. He didn't rush me. He didn't ask why we were looking. He just let me look, probably knowing full well I'd put some in our shopping basket. And when I made my final selection, he didn't ask "How much are those?" or "Why are we getting flowers?" He just let me put them in the cart and we continued on with our shopping.

I love that he allows me to be myself: crazy, stubborn, selfish, sometimes demanding, silly, and the occasional whiner. He eats what I cook for diner, even if it's too dry, crispy, or not his favorite. When I burn our grilled ham and cheese sandwiches, he calls it "Cajun style" and eats it anyway. And when he comes home and I've already changed out of my work clothes into some awful, unflattering pair of "fat pants" with my hair pulled back in a messy 1/2 bun 1/2 pony tail, he still gives me a kiss hello, a big hug, asks how my day was, and never once says "jeez, you look sloppy."

I'm one of the lucky ones who married a guy who doesn't comment when I leave dishes in the sink from the night before. Michael never says "Wow, you're makeup is all over the bathroom counter!" Instead, he lets me make a giant mess of the bathroom, decorating our shared space with half filled cans of hair spray, moose, gel, brushes, combs, hot rollers, curling irons, make-up, etc...

I get to sleep in as long as I want on weekends, and hang out on the couch all day Sunday watching America's Next Top Model and he never says anything to make me feel guilty for it. He's great at making sure KeeLee is fed and takes her for a walk every day. Sometimes twice. He takes the garbage out on Wednesday mornings, and brings it back in after the garbage man has come. He does laundry and loads and the dishwasher without telling me it's the wife's responsibility. He helps me clean house and change sheets and fold towels and everything else that goes into the upkeep of a house. And he never asks "Aren't we done yet?" I love that.

He lets me pick which movie we're going to see, and buys me kettle corn once we're there. He gives me his jacket when I'm cold and tells me that I'm beautiful on my most unattractive days. He lets me complain about being fat and never says "then do something about it." He never comments that I shouldn't have that when I put a package of double stuffed Oreo's in our shopping cart. He doesn't shake his head when I pour myself a Dr. Pepper at 9:30 at night.

But more than anything, I love that he is the kindest, sweetest man in this world, and he's in love with me. I don't know how or why I got so lucky, but I did. I wake up every morning next to the most wonderful man I have ever known, and I always drift asleep after hearing his soft "Love you sweetie!" And I don't think it gets better than that :)

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

2 Hours of My Life I'll Never Get Back

Setting: Husband standing in Kitchen, wife sitting at kitchen table.
Time: Evening, just after dinner.
Situation: The couple is discussing how to spend a relaxing evening at home.

Wife: "Hey, wanna watch a movie tonight? We can run to Blockbuster and get a new release. They always get new movies on Tuesdays."

Hubby: "OK, sounds good. What do you want to rent?"

Wife: "I think 'Rachael Getting Married' comes out today. Let's get that one. We both like Anne Hathaway, and she got nominated for an Oscar for her role in that one, so it should be pretty good."

Hubby: "Sounds good to me."

Setting: Master Bedroom
Time: Later that evening, after Hubby returns from Blockbuster.

Situation: The couple is watching movie.

Wife: "This movie is kind of boring. I thought it would be better than this. What's the point?"

Husband: "It's too long. How late do you want to stay up watching this? I think I'm actually going to go to sleep."

Wife: "Okay, I'm going to try and finish it since I've already invested an hour in it."

Setting: Master Bedroom
Time: Much later that evening.
Situation: Wife is STILL watching movie, Hubby is sleeping.

Wife thinking to herself: "Can this movie get any worse? Will it just end already? This sucks, I can't believe I've been sitting her for two hours watching such a crappy show. I'm pissed."


So there you have it. Michael and I rented what we thought was supposed to be a good movie. After all, the "critics have been raving about Rachael Getting Married" right? Well, news for the critics. THIS MOVIE SUCKS!

Have you ever watched a movie that was so bad you just HAD to finish it? You figure, well, I've already invested an hour of my time into this story... I guess I better see where it goes (which is usually nowhere). And then... TWO HOURS LATER, you're sitting there pissed off that you didn't turn it off when you began to realize it sucked in the first place and probably wasn't going to get any better?! Yeah- I have a list of THOSE types of movies, and Rachael Getting Married just shot to the top.

Where were the editors on this one? Seriously, it's like they fell asleep in the editing room and just let the film role without making any cuts. I mean really, how long does a wedding reception scene need to last? Do we need to see EVERY.SINGLE.DANCE? Might I add... there is no dialogue happening at this point, just music.

And what's up with the wedding anyway? It's like Indian (dot not feather) meets African, meets American, meets Asian meets CRACK. For the life of me I couldn't figure out why someone would have such a mess of a wedding theme to begin with. It's like cultures vomited all over the set (I have no problem with culture, believe me, but it's like the director just couldn't decide what he wanted so he did a little bit of everything- not a good idea).

Then, to add to the already irreversible wreck of a wedding, the entire plot of the show just sucked. Kim (played by Anne Hathaway) is a recovering drug addict. Everyone else is just f*#@%# up. Excuse the language, but there really is no other word to adequately describe the rest of the characters in this film. They spend the whole time fighting, each of them has a psychological issue, and there's a contest to see who can load the dirty dishes in the dishwasher the fastest. Really. There is. And it's lame.

I need to stop ranting about it because I'm working myself up again and this film really isn't worth my energy. I've already lost two hours of my limited free time to this wreck of a show, and now I've spent another 10 minutes blogging about it. So I'm done.

Just know this: If you consider your free time precious, don't waste it on this film.

UPDATE: We've all experienced the disappointment of wanting so badly to enjoy a nice movie at home or the theatre, only to be pissed off when it's over. Therefore, please share with me a list of your "Don't waste your time watching this because it stinks" movies so the above situation doesn't happen to me again. It would be much appreciated :)

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Plans and Things

After a crappy dinner (chicken was dry, I used regular rice instead of minute rice, we didn't eat until 9:30...ugh) I settled in for a short evening of TV and playing Bejeweled on the laptop. I turned the TV to one of mine and Michael's favorite channels: HGTV. We're new home owners and we have plans to do many house projects in the near future (or at least when our budgets will allow). Projects include updating the kitchen, painting, and laying tile/ updating the counter/cupboards in the master bathroom as well. So needless to say, HGTV offers a LOT of great tips; and it's where I get a lot of fun home improvement ideas.

SO- last night's show was based on this woman who decided to put all her furniture in storage and move to a condo in the Caribbean. *JEALOUS* For those of you who know me, I don't know WHAT I'M DOING living in the cold, snowy mountains of Utah. I'm a water girl at heart. I love the beach and feel at home when I'm near it. More than just love it because it's beautiful, I actually feel more energized when I'm near the ocean. I looked and looked for a job in my dream town of Wilmington, North Carolina when Michael was still in the Marines, but didn't find anything in my field. Thus he got a job with Homeland Security and moved here.

Anyway, after drooling over the opportunity this woman had just given herself, and turning green with envy over the less than two minute walk to the aqua beach (she gets to fall asleep every night listening to the waves crash upon the sand), I turned to Michael and said "That's where we are retiring; I will die on a beach." And because my wonderful husband is a numbers man, an awesome financial planner, and is in as much love with the beach as I am... we now have a plan.

PLAN: We're going to put money away for a simple but comfortable living space somewhere in a tropical paradise. Maybe we'll be lucky enough to purchase and enjoy it BEFORE retirement (crossing fingers), but if not, at least we'll be there some day. But mark my words, we have a DOABLE plan. And the plan includes white sandy beaches, palm trees, aqua blue water, and the sound of waves lulling me off to dream land every night.

Most importantly, this plan includes my sanity, because I know one day I'll be there. And although it will be a dream come true, Michael and I won't have to call it a vacation- because we'll be too busy calling it home :)

Monday, March 9, 2009

Weekend Recap

First of all, I'd like to start out today by saying that Reduced Fat Wheat Thins ROCK! They totally save me during that time between breakfast and lunch when I'm sitting at my desk ready to chew my arm off because I'm STARVING (yes I have breakfast in the mornings, but just about 20 mins before lunch, I find myself feeling as if I've been trapped on a deserted island with nothing but sand and coconuts). Plus, these wheat thins satisfy my salt cravings. I can never get enough salt.

That being said, I'm now going to mention how disgusted I am with this weather. Wind, Snow, Wind, Snow, COLD COLD COLD. SUCKS. I'm SO ready for spring, tulips, blue skies, warm sun, birds chirping, and green grass. GOOD BYE to ice patches, having to wear a heavy coat, cleaning snow off my car, accident reports on the news due to weather conditions, freezing cold wind, and everything looking dead. Come on March- in like a lion right? Well, bring on the lamb. I'm ready. I can handle it, I WANT to handle it.

The weekend? It was boring, but in a good way boring. Michael and I hung out at home on Friday night. I made spaghetti to surprise him when he walked in the door (his favorite). He has been out of town for work training for the past two weeks and I figured he would be tired, hungry, and sick of fast food... thus the spaghetti. Then we went and rented 3 movies, and snuggled in for a long relaxing weekend.
UPDATE: Movies sucked. All Three. Bummer nothing good has come out lately.

On Saturday we went car shopping in Provo. I'm looking for another AUDI and I refuse to buy another car from Dave Strong in SLC, so we made our way to Ken Garff in Provo. Didn't find anything, but Mom and Grandma came up to meet us for lunch at Red Lobster (yay lobster fest) and then we did a little shopping at the over priced Kohl's. After that, Michael and I headed back home for another crappy movie. Then we watched KeeLee struggle to find a good hiding spot for her bone. She ended up going with the bottom of Michael's suit case. Probably because he still had clothes in there and it made for good digging. After crappy movie, we took a break for ice cream, and then decided we'd better have some nachos (you know, to balance out the sweet vs salty cravings). No I'm not prego. Yes I have PMS.

On Sunday, we made our way to the man cave (aka basement) and organized and unpacked some of the boxes that have been sitting there since move in day. Actually, Michael did most of the unpacking since it was pretty much all of his stuff. I organized my holiday decorations, found a box of items I was hoping hadn't gotten lost in the move, and entertained the dog. Oh, and we moved all the clocks forward. YEAH for this time change. I LOVE LOVE LOVE having an extra hour of sunlight when I get home from work. However, where is the sun today I ask? Hidden behind snow clouds :(

That about sums up the weekend. Oh, except I forgot to mention we had to look behind all the pillows on the couches because KeeLee decided to help herself to the bag of bite sized snickers minis in Michael's suit case. She downed a few given that we found some empty wrappers on the floor, but then I caught her digging behind the pillows on the sofa and when Michael decided to look behind them, he found more snickers. Guess the dog had a craving for sweets this weekend.

So that's it in a nutshell. I'm looking forward to being home this evening relaxing with Michael, wearing comfy pj's and eating a good home-cooked dinner (I started marinating chicken last night). I live for free time...don't we all? :)

Friday, March 6, 2009

25 Things I Love and Love to Hate

I love:
1- Putting on comfy clothes when I get home from work
2- The way my puppy comes to say goodmorning as soon as the alarm goes off
3- Going on vacations
4- Purses
5- Looking through old pictures of friends and family
6- When it rains and I get to be home with a good book
7- Realizing it's not as late in the day as you think it is
8- Pottery
9- Getting new makeup
10- Peanutbutter
11- Getting an unexpected call from a good friend
12- Michael's eyes
13- The sound of waves crashing on a beach
14- Pay day
15- A full tank of gas
16- Summers in North Carolina
17- U.S. History
18- People watching
19- Getting an awesome parking spot
20- Finding money in a coat you haven't worn forever
21- Getting a strike at bowling
22- Fireflies
23- The smell of the air conditioner at my parent's house in the summer
24- Making smores around a camp fire
25- Star gazing

I hate:
1- People who cut you off on the freeway
2- Hearing that it's going to snow again
3- Being tired at work
4- Feeling obligated to do something
5- Eating lunch by myself
6- Sweating
7- Folding socks
8- Cleaning out the fridge
9- Having a mess so big you don't know where to start (unpacking)
10- The paint color in my family and formal dining room
11- Waiting for an oil change
12- Too many commercials
13- Dropped calls
14- Looking for my car keys
15- Bad hair days
16- Sorting laundry
17- Parents who let their children run crazy in public places
18- Being barefoot
19- When a good book ends and I don't know what to read next
20- Science fiction movies
21- Cartoons
22- Being too hot to sleep
23- Jell-O
24- Fighting with insurance companies
25- Repeaters- people who say the same thing in the same conversation over and over agian

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Garlic and Propane

It was an interesting day at work yesterday. By interesting, I mean smelly. And by smelly, I mean disgusting. Let me explain.

It's about 4:00 in the afternoon and we're all sitting at our desks working away when this odd smell starts creeping into our work space. At first I didn't think much about it. I just thought it was something in passing that would be gone as quickly as it came. WRONG.

As I sat there, the smell started getting worse. But the stronger it became, the more identifiable it was and soon I was thinking to myself "that smells like natural gas". Not something you want to smell inside a building. So I look around to see if anyone else seemed to notice the stench. But everyone was working away. This led me to believe that either 1- Nobody wants to say anything or 2- I'm crazy, my nose is broken, and I'm the only one smelling this awful smell.

Pretty soon Kevin comes around the corner and expressed that he smelled natural gas and thought it best that we go outside. So we all grab our coats/bags and head out. Some guy even passed out cookies while we were standing in the 80 MPH wind waiting for an invitation to go back inside. I noticed that nobody else was coming outside except for the people sitting in our department. Pretty soon, someone came out and told us it was okay to go back in.

Once back in my seat, an announcement came over the PA system "All employees, please evacuate the building now..." UH, okay. We just did that but whatever, I guess we'll do it again. But just as we were getting up to go out a second time, someone called false alarm.

I guess the lab was cooking odorless garlic (odorless my foot). Apparently when you cook odorless garlic, it gives off a smell similar to that of propane. Let me just tell you, it was bad. REALLY BAD. As in, I could barf it stinks so bad.

On my way home I was sitting in my car thinking "What stinks in here?" And then I realized, it was me. Yes, I had to go home and shower because I wreaked of natural gas/garlic. Needless to say, I pulled into the garage, opened my sunroof to let the car air out, and went upstairs to take a shower.

Who knew that cooking garlic could be so fun?!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Just Think About It

Another minor rant and then I'll shut up about the show The Bachelor. So Gillian was named the next bachelorette last night (and why wouldn't she be-she's totally adorable). However, this left me pondering a few things. Mainly- why are the most beautiful people on the bachelor and bachelorette shows?

Seriously think about this for a second. They elect extremely good looking people for this show. People who shouldn't have any trouble finding love because they're all stunning to look at for starters (which seems to be the first way to catch someone's eye). I know, I know, it's for ratings because nobody wants to watch ugly people fall in love right? WRONG. Remember Shrek?

Why can't NORMAL people be on this show? Normal, average-looking people who are struggling to find their one true love. It seems to me they are the ones in need of having 25 people line up to fight for their love, attention, and affection. Beautiful people have that happening for them anyway.

I challenge you- have you seen one average looking bachelor or bachelorette since the show started? One that had maybe an extra 20 or 30 lbs they could afford to lose? One that may have had a bald spot, or crooked teeth? No, you haven't. The only contestants on this show have been the real lookers (the ones who probably don't have to look that hard to find someone attracted to them in the first place).

I'm not bitter, I'm really not. In fact, I'm happily married to a man I happen to think is very handsome. Obviously I didn't need the bachelorette to find my true love, but there are plenty of NORMAL, average-looking, single men and women out there who could use this opportunity but will never be selected because they don't have enough "pretty people" votes to drive the television ratings. Kinda lame if you ask me.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009


I hate to even admit that I got sucked in to the "reality" show "The Bachelor" but I did. I can proudly say that I didn't watch this from the beginning, however. I think the first episode I watched was the one where Jason got to meet the girls' families. After the whole bury the dove incident, I had to watch. I mean, who doesn't get sucked in when there's a complete train wreck on TV?!

So why did I continue watching? Well for starters, I actually liked Jason. I thought to myself here's a really handsome, gentle, kind and caring person, and I hope he really does find what he's looking for. Mind you, I have never watched this show before because I don't prefer investing my personal time watching fake people try to win whatever contest is at the base of these reality shows. That being said, Jason sucked me right in.

So here are my down and dirty opinions:

  1. I wanted him to pick Melissa. From what I could tell, they really had chemistry and she was adorable. They just complimented each other and appeared to make a really great couple.
  2. There's something off about Molly. She's not emotional enough or something. And the way she ends her statements as if they were actually questions when she's talking drives me insane.
  3. I want to know what went down in the 6 weeks Jason and Melissa dated. If things just didn't work out because Jason couldn't get Molly out of his head, then shame on Jason for proposing to Melissa in the first place. Way to give your supposedly future wife and relationship an honest and fair start.
  4. I can't believe Jason didn't take his personal issues off camera. Why in the world did his break up with Melissa have to be public (6 weeks after the fact and the show had ended).
  5. Molly- even though you are odd, you're a smart enough girl to realize Jason wronged Melissa, on so many levels. Recognize that. Think about it. Process it.
  6. Jason- I am torn because I think you have a valid point and that is that nobody should marry someone they aren't in love with. But stop and think about why you're really NOT in love with Melissa. Ask yourself if you gave her a fair chance. Then ask yourself if the same thing would have happened had you asked Molly to marry you first. Would you have been able to stop thinking about Melissa?
  7. ABC- shame on you for allowing Jason to humiliate Melissa on screen. The show was over. Don't beat a dead horse just for ratings, especially at the expense of Melissa.
  8. Gillian- Thank God you got out when you did. You're the luckiest girl of them all.
  9. This is a good reminder for me as to why I do NOT watch reality TV.
  10. All of this has made me so very thankful that I have a loving, mature, genuine husband who has given 100% of himself to me. I'm so glad he has all the qualities I THOUGHT Jason had as well. I am so lucky to be loved by Michael.

There you have it. My rant, my rave, my thoughts. Just one last question for Jason:

Monday, March 2, 2009

Wouldn't it Be Cool if You...

1- Could trade places with someone else, just for a day?
2- Didn't have to work for a living, and could spend more time with your family and friends?
3- Never had a hard time falling asleep?
4- Had a super power?
5- Could eat and drink whatever you wanted and never get fat?

If I could trade places with someone else just for one day, I think I'd pick someone famous in the film or music industry. Not sure who exactly, but I'd love to know what it feels like, to be debt free, and called by name everywhere I went. I'd love to experience the exhilarating feeling of filming a movie or singing on stage with a crowd below me screaming for more. I'd probably hate it and really appreciate being me after one day of living in someone else's shoes- which is exactly why the experience would be beneficial :)

If I didn't have to work for a living, I'd jump in the car and pick up as many friends as I could fit. We'd head out on an awesome road trip, with no plan. We'd just go where the wind would take us, and nobody would have to call into work with some phoney excuse as to why they aren't there. We wouldn't have to come home by a certain time because we'd be free from corporate America.

If I never had a hard time falling asleep, I wouldn't be sitting here yawning right now. I hate trying to go to bed on Sunday nights. Especially after I've had the opportunity to sleep in on the weekends and relax. I'm just not tired when I'm supposed to be, which makes going to bed at a decent hour all the more difficult, and then I don't sleep well when I finally do fall asleep. Thus- I hate Mondays.

If I could pick just one super power to have, I'd go with.... um.... gosh that's a hard one. I'd like to say the ability to fly, or to be invisible, or the ability to predict anything I wanted. But in thinking of each one, I see downfalls. I'll get back to you on this on. I'm sure you'll be sitting on the edge of your seat to see which one I pick since it's so likely to happen. Don't hold your breath.

If I could eat and drink whatever I wanted and never be fat, I'd live on Dr. Pepper and peanut butter and chocolate. This combination will fix anything (except maybe your clothes not fitting).