Wednesday, December 31, 2008

happy new year!

happy new year my bloggy friends.

today is the slowest day of work EVER.

i just want to go hooooome. i want to be with my husband and cuddle and watch tv.

i swear it's 5 o'clock and my computer clock is just stuck.

SIGH!!!!!!!!


3 things:

b
m
w

those are my husband's real initials :-)

Monday, December 29, 2008

Fear Not...

So, I usually don't post about my religious views...but this struck a chord with my heart this Christmas and I thought it post-worthy. I think that for all of us in bloggyland...at least those whose blogs I read frequently...it's a reminder that we need.

The back story: very long with personal details. skip if you just want the message.


2007-2008 for the most part completely totally sucked. Granted a lot of really wonderful things happened to me. I left the job I was to burned out to do anymore and moved back to Columbus, which is the city of my heart. P and I bought a house. I started a new job that looked promising and wonderful. Before we bought the house, we lived with our friends the Mojos. While living with the Mojos we house-hunted and I started my new job. I got about a month and a half into it and started feeling "off". Like, there were times when I felt light-headed...dizzy. My stomach would roll and I'd feel like I had to sit down before I fell down. I went my usual route of ignoring things because if you ignore them, they'll go away. My heart rate was ridiculous, I mean...it's always fast (apparently I run on a different speed than everyone else...blood pressure is extremely low, but my resting pulse is rarely lower than 77 but resting it was still around 100 beats per minute. When we moved into the new house, P was working in the evenings, and I was there by myself until 11:30 p.m. a lot...and that's when it got really bad. The job wasn't going well at all, my boss was a nightmare and the people I worked with were the kind of people who are ignorant and prejudiced about many of the things that I consider myself an ally for. I was pretty much miserable and had only been there for 3 months. Anyway, I would be unpacking boxes and would have to stop and go lie down. I was terrified and thought I was dying. Finally, one night, I went to the gym...feeling off and ran for a long time. I checked my pulse and it was hovering around 200 beats per minute. GASP! SHOCK! TERROR! So, i went to urgent care. They checked everything and said "go home, you're fine, it's normal." I wasn't convinced and went home and cried. About a week later, I was putting stuff away (again, P wasn't home) and my chest got tight and I got dizzy and lightheaded again. I took myself back to urgent care and burst into tears in front of the nurse. She brought in the on-call doctor and he listened to my heart and said, "You know...I don't want to seem forward...but have you had a lot of change in the last couple of months?" YES!!!!!! I said. YES!!!! Then he asked, "Are you usually the type of person who just 'handles stress?'. YES! I said, thinking where is this crazy man going with this?? He then said...I think you're having anxiety attacks. WHAT????

Yes...and so began the year long journey through anxiety. I tried to tough it out for a couple of months...I made it through September before I caved and decided that I couldn't deal with it on my own anymore. I was stressing my parents out and poor P would come home to find me crying on the bed because I just couldn't breathe...couldn't get my heart to slow down. He would hold me and make me breathe with him until I could get it under control. I finally came to the realization that this was one thing that I was not going to be able to just 'handle.' I took myself to a counselor and got myself a prescription for some anti-anxiety meds. My urgent care doctor became my regular doctor. He addressed all my medical concerns and proved to me that there wasn't actually anything physically wrong with me. The counselor was wonderful, she quickly realized that I was not the type of person who would just take her word for things and gave me journal articles to read. She encouraged me when I was down and talked me through a lot of things where I really thought I was crazy. She helped bring my confidence back when between my boss and my anxiety...it had all but disappeared. We found that I am much more of a "bottler" than I had ever thought. That all the times when I would say I wasn't stressed out, planning a wedding, grad school, my dad's stroke, my grandparents deaths...I just didn't let myself grieve. Didn't let myself feel anything. I was far too afraid to feel vulnerable to let myself actually get rid of those emotions the way that normal people do.

Then along came March 2008. I was still seeing the counselor, still on the anxiety meds. My mom called and my worst nightmare came true...my dad was in the hospital again. There was something wrong with his heart. This is one of my biggest fears in the world, I am terrified of the day that I lose my dad. It's because he's older...he's 71. He's always been really healthy other than having "major things" happen. Diabetes, mismanaged diabetes, a mini-stroke. Other than that, he's hardly ever been sick in the entire time that I can remember. But my dad...my daddy, the person who'd always been my rock...was in the hospital. I felt like every worry I'd ever had about him dying was coming true. I was terrified. P was wonderful, he showed me that no matter what happens...he can be my 'rock' too. That he can be my strength when I'm not strong. But I was still scared. I had to be strong for my mom and my little sister especially, but inside I didn't know if I could handle it...not with everything else that had happened this year. But I did...and I did it differently than I had in the past. I let P see me cry. I prayed. Oh... how I prayed. I prayed not that God wouldn't let my dad die...but that he would do what he felt was right. I trusted Him. I trusted that IF he did pass...my family would still be okay. My dad's surgery went fine and he's doing amazingly well. I still worry. There's a part of me that every day wonders how people do it when their parents die. How long does the hurt last before it becomes manageable...How long will I ache and feel that emptiness. (I don't REALLY want an answer.)

After my dad's surgery, I decided that where I was working was really a major contributor to my unhappiness and started searching for a new job on the sly. I hated doing it, but was left with no choice. The end of May, I found a new job at OSU. I started working at my dream job 2 weeks later.

I gradually took myself off meds and stopped seeing the counselor. I've learned to effectively manage the anxiety...though I wish I could just never worry...I know that it's always going to be a part of me and I just have to not let it affect everything. This is the real reason that I started this blog to help me not let anxiety and fear turn everything bad, to help remind myself of all the reasons I have in life to be strong, to be confident and to be happy. This leads us to the Christmas Eve Sermon.

The Message: From Rev.Mcquire.

The title of the sermon was "Fear Not." It was a reminder of just how many times in the Bible God speaks to us and says "Fear not...for I am with you." It's actually true that the command not to fear is repeated more times than the command to feel love. Luke tells us of how the shepherds quaked in the field when the angels came to tell them of Christ’s birth. Luke tells us" And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

It is such a strong message throughout the Bible. FEAR NOT. Live your life In Him. TRUST. Do not be afraid...He is there.

Do not be afraid of the sad economy, do not be afraid of failure or of success, do not be afraid of your own mortality...do not be afraid of Loss...of sadness. He makes no promises that those things will not happen...but He loves us. He promises repeatedly that He is there. That He will take care of us always. If we trust. If we remember that message first told to the shepherds... Fear NOT...there is joy. We will see those we love again, we will be okay. Unequivocally...He tells us, He is there. You will be fine.

I have always wondered how my dad, my strong safe dad, has never been afraid. How he has never appeared to worry. Perhaps he just doesn't have the "worry gene" that the rest of us do. Or perhaps it's because he actually listens...listens to what God tells us so many times. My dad has always told me "everything will be okay...there's no need to worry." I used to laugh to myself and say 'how do you know.' But he does...and I believe I'm beginning to understand. How can I not trust what's repeated more times than the command to love? How can I assume to know better than God himself? Humbling thought huh?

So dear readers...here's my paraphrased message as we all begin the New Year together. Our generation (those of us in our late 20s, early 30s) are worriers. We are a caretaker generation...we fix things. We control things. We are strong and do not like to feel vulnerable. But we are human. We are just frail creatures in the greater scheme of Life. I plan to embrace my humanity...to stop trying to pretend that I can handle everything all the time. I hope not to fear so much this year. To remember that when I think that I'm about to plummet off a cliff onto the crashing rocks below, I have an invisible safety net. A giant warm loving safety net. HE is there, My God. As we continue in our new marriages, plan new weddings, hope for children (not me yet!!!!!), wish for good health for all those we love, fail, succeed, and dream....remember that no matter what the outcome, we need not fear.

This is my favorite reminder of one of the 75 or so times that God tells us not to be afraid.

The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? the LORD is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid? Psalms 27-1, KJ


3 things. Three reasons not to be afraid.





Thursday, December 18, 2008

mothers in law....

dinner with the mother in law and her boyfriend tonight...

plusses- free food at Ruths Chris steakhouse
minuses- i resent that she feels she can demand time with us after she ignored her son for the better part of his life. i dislike that in the 6 years that P and I have been together she has only supported him when she feels its convenient and that he feels compelled to say "it's just how she is...you can't expect anything else from her" Why should any son have to say that about his mother?

grrr.

perhaps i shall order filet. or lobster. or perhaps both. that will make me feel better :-)

oooooh i hear a big BAH HUMBUG in the room!

3 things:

my parents who have always, ALWAYS been there for me no matter what
my husband who deserves the best from everyone because he unconditionally loves them
that people in the world are finding holiday cheer in the little things like goofy ornaments and tinny musical cards and old christmas specials.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

twas the night before christmas......or wishful thinking?!

i wish it was the night before christmas! i wish that my cough would go away. it hurts!

where have i been since my last post? well let's see...

P and I went down to Dayton for my mom's birthday but that was when my dad and I were both still really sick so rather than go to Lebanon for the Parade of Horses that we go to every year I laid on the couch and snotted my brains out watching football with my dad while P and my sister and mom brought us hot drinks and blankets. I mustered enough energy to go with my mom and sister to pick up ribs from our favorite restaurant in Dayton (Hickory BBQ on Brown Street) and on the way home we were following a truck down I-35 and it spun out in front of us, missed us by maybe 5 feet and crashed into the wall. I hate winter weather driving.

Everyone was okay and the ribs were worth the journey!

I got to see my horses which was great...I wish that I could find somewhere close to my house that isn't 300+ a month. I really miss Colors even if I haven't ridden him in over a year. I would love to get back into riding regularly. Even just being able to be around the horse would be great. Horses center me and bring me back to earth when I get stressed. They are completely non judgemental and I truly believe they are telepathic and can sense your feelings and help heal your heart.

After Dayton we came home and went back to the daily grind. We went Christmas shopping a couple evenings and I did a floor-set at Bath and Body Works one night. That was a nightmare. I enjoy the floor sets because it's mindless work and the girls are really nice and it's fun to set up the store and make it all pretty for the holidays but when 3 people bail out at 11 and leave the manager and I there until 230 a.m. when i have to go to my real job at 730 the next morning....ooooh that hurts!

OSU's been OSU. The kiddies are all done with finals and have gone home for break so the campus is very very empty. It's kind of creepy because right during finals a girl was raped in broad daylight outside the building that's like 2 building's down from mine. Well, she was grabbed outside the building and dragged into the basement. We're all being really careful trying not to walk anywhere alone.

On a happier OSU note, it's nice to be done with my first "real" quarter of work at a new job. I have absolutely loved it and I'm starting to feel a little more confident...more like my old self before my last disasterous job with the crazy evil boss that destroyed my confidence in myself.(yeah...anywhere that makese you so miserable you go to counseling about it is NOT a good place to work.)

So that takes us to this last weekend...we went up to Michigan and spent the weekend in Ann Arbor with my friend Cornelia Maria and her husband Dr.Neuropsych. He's doing his internship at U of M and she's working for Concordia which is highly entertaining as Concordia is EXTREMELY CONSERVATIVE LUTHERAN and Cornelia, while Catholic, is a feminist who worked with me in very liberal Athens for 4 years. She's pretty much doing it for the free housing, but I think I probably would have died by now. She's not even allowed to say "so if you were spending the night at your boyfriends" as a hypothetical scenario example. They are in complete denial that there is pre-marital sex. Highly entertaining.

Anyway, we visited them and then went up to Detroit for the OASIS concert! OH MY GOD IT WAS AMAZINGLY FUN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I love Oasis and we had several of their songs in our wedding (Wonderwall, She is Love) and then we danced to Noel Gallagher's cover of This Guy's In Love with You. It was a great "rock" concert....I was even pleasantly surprised by Ryan Adams and his band the Cardinals. They are edgier than just plain Ryan Adams who I find to be kind of whiney and boring. If you dont' know who Oasis is, then I highly suggest that you go HERE and listen to some of their songs. The videos are a little strange but I recommend listening to Let There Be Love, Whatever, Live Forever and Champagne Supernova.

It's been a busy last ten days or so...but, lots of fun.

I shall leave you with a slightly less than thought provoking but still very true couple of lines from "The Masterplan"

Then dance if you wanna dance
Please brother take a cahnce
You know they're gonna go
which way they wanna go
All we know is that we don't know
How it's goinna be, please brother let it be
Life on the other hand wont let us understand
we're all part of the master plan

3 things:
tylenol nightime cough medicine
that my dog somehow remembers where he left his purple squirrel and he'll run and go get it and play with it on his own
that i live in Ohio and not Michigan :-)

Monday, December 8, 2008

dear sweet cold medicine

dear sweet 9 pound 4 oz baby jesus (talladega nights anyone?)

i have been SOOOOO sick! i got the cold from hell and have spent the last 5 days trying to snuffle,sneeze and cough my way through work, family, and all kinds of other stuff.

So what have I not told you, now that I'm starting to feel better?

Thanksgiving was a mixed bag. Left work early on Wednesday, spent the evening at home getting ready to go on the whirlwind tour of Ohio. Went to P's mom's house in the morning on Thursday and hung out with her awful boyfriend. This was freezing cold and uncomfortable and miserable. P's mom and dad got divorced when P was 8 or so and MIL moved to California when P was about 11 I think. MIL was largely absent from Ps life. From when I started dating P to when we got married, she'd sent him maybe 3 cards and called him a handful of times and he'd gone out to visit her once. Anyway, I have a little bit of resentment toward her because she now tries to make P feel guilty for not spending much time with her now that she's moved back to Ohio with her latest boyfriend. Thanksgiving was fairly similar. Little comments from her and her bf about spending more time with them rather than going straight to Ps dad's house (sidebar: we weren't INVITED to her house...we invited ourselves to stop by for a couple hours). It's whatever.

That afternoon we spent a wonderful wine and food filled afternoon and evening with Ps dad and step mom and step mom's family. There was tons of food, football and friends. I always feel like the frumpy oddball with the step mom's daughters because they're all drop dead gorgeous, put together out of a magazine, dark Italian looking women. I'm short, chubby and frizzy. They are very warm and welcoming to me, I sometimes think that they think I'm like the special kid on the bus. Oh well ;) I'm much more comfortable with their husbands where I can watch football and talk about Ohio State etc.

We played Euchre late into the night and then went to bed. The next morning P and I drove down to Columbus and I worked at Bath and Body Works helping them with Black Friday. It was pretty fun and not as busy as I thought it would have been.

Saturday my family came up and I cooked a huge meal of lamb and potatoes and veggies and dessert. My sister brought her boyfriend and it was just awkward and uncomfortable and awful because he's SO nice and she was being such a brat. I don't know if he'll last long. I would like them to break up and then get back together in a few years when she's ready to "settle down". My mom had the plague and ended up passing that on to me so I stayed home Monday and then faked my way through 4 days of work while trying not to drown in my own snot and phlegm. I know, I'm a pretty princess.

We decorated our Christmas tree and mantle and put a few decorations outside. As soon as I'm home, I'll put up a few more outside and we'll be done. I hope to post some pics soon!

3 things:
my mom putting her hand on my forehead to see if I had a fever, simple gestures let me know I'm loved.
my husband being SO nice to me when i've been such a crab pants for the last week
going to the oasis concert next saturday

Monday, December 1, 2008

I'M STILL THANKFUL....#%$@#%#%$#%#%

MORE ABOUT THANKSGIVING LATER....

but here's the thing. I am SOOOOOOOOOOOOOO thankful for my wonderful sister.

BUT

there are times when I would like to knock her silly for her 20 year old mean snake in the grass attitude.


OOOOOOOOOH MADNESS.

*breathe in* *breathe out*

I'm her older sister. We could brawl but nooo I will keep my mouth shut. I will just let her work it through her system and I will just assume she has PMS.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

thanksgiving run down

this blog is dedicated to all that i'm thankful for...but i wanted to remind the Internet, just how important it is that we REALLY count our blessings no matter how few or small they seem be to be. even if there's someone out there who feels like they have nothing or that nothing is going well....there is Life, there is beauty in simplicity, there is Hope.

that's a lot to be thankful for.

tonight: husband's at work, i'm eating a fantastic meal of mac'n'sneeze and merlot GOD I LOVE SIMPLE THINGS

tomorrow: bret's parents house and his stepmom's amazing thanksgiving meal straight out of better homes and gardens and the foodnetwork. I kid you not this woman's cooking is amazing. 25 family members I barely know all of whom look like tall dark Italian women with gorgeous straight brown hair and MAYBE the largest is a size 3. but they are all wonderfully warm and kind and accepting of my frizzy, tomboy, goofballness.


Friday: drivin home, bath and body works to help out during the Black Friday craziness and a sweet night with Husband

Saturday: roast lamb, velvet mashed potatoes, root vegetables au gratin, pumpkin cheesecake chocolate pie, pear and apple tart, green beans.

RIGHT NOW....oh crap the pies burning....no time to proofread!!!!

happy holidays all.

3 things:

that i found my dog on top of our patio table this afternoon...it appears that i've lost all control and i love it

my husband swept the house so i dont have to

my amazing amazing life and all those in it. including you.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

conformity?

Yesterday was the last class for my Wednesday sections. Thank goodness, two down, 3 more to go!

I noticed yesterday though, that I did a much better job learning the male students names than I did with the female students. I thought about that for a while and this is the conclusion that I came to. The men...look significantly different from eachother. The women...they tend to wear the same styles, have the same hair colors, same make up etc. The young women whose names I did get to know, are the ones that either fall outside the norm (the emo-girl, the girl with the lip piercing, the one who dyed her hair pink)or they are the ones that made an effort to come in to see me and let me know who they were.

I feel bad for not being able to separate out blonde girl number one from blonde girl number two. And I definitely don't mean that they SHOULDN'T dress how they are, or wear their hair the way they do....It's just interesting to me that in a class of 175 people, so many of them look similar enough that I can't remember which is which.

I know there's fashion fads and trends, there are classes on that here :-) But, when is it too much? When everyone's starting to look like Carrie Underwood? I didn't pick her name randomly...she's got the same kind of "look" that alot of my female students have. Interesting how we pick our styles to define ourselves...and then inadvertently define an entire class of women.

ramble ramble rah.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

whoopsies...made a puddle.

so last night...i was dead to the world asleep and somehow i rolled myself over and as i often do, laid my head on P's chest.

at about 4 a.m. I woke up because my face felt wet.

I had drooled so much that I made a puddle on poor P's chest.

i am such a pretty pretty princess.

oops.


3 things:

1.Mojokid is crawling forward now :-) :-) he's freakin adorable
2.I made a coupon book like Imperfect and am excited to start saving
3. meatloaf and mashed potatoes on a cold day with a good friend in a warm house.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

2 years

Dear P,

We have been married for two years today. At risk of sounding cliche I have to tell you that it's been the most wonderful two years of my life. People always say that they "know" when they find their soul mate. You and I both agree that we did not just "know". Both of us were happy in our lives and didn't know what we were missing with out eachother. You have filled a part of my soul that I didn't know I was missing before I met you. You have brought into my life, things that I never would have considered...and now love so very much. Friday night high school football, Oasis Concerts, the mountains...I have so many great memories that would never exist had we not started dating, fell in love and got married.

I think to myself how many things had to take place for us to even meet. You had to make the decision to stay at Ohio State and not go to Toledo to go the Pharmacy Program your sophomore year. I had to decide to go to grad school and get placed in Stradley for my assistantship. Aimee had to be on my staff when she SHOULD have gone on to another building by then. You still had to keep in touch with her and be willing to come help her staff the office til she could hire freshmen. I had to just happen to be in the office the day you were giving her a hard time and you, quiet, shy, reserved, introverted you...had to ask Aimee for my information so that after you quit working there, you could stay in touch. That's a lot of "chance" that could have never happened. I think our choices in the past brought us together for our future. Once we started dating and you got deployed to England, you could have gone out with the guys...and you didn't. You were so committed to me that they started calling me "wifey". Perhaps your Guard Buddies knew then, what we hadn't realized yet.

When you came back and I was working for OU, you had a choice to come to Athens, or stay in Columbus for grad school. It was just chance that you got offered an assistantship in Athens. It was around then that I really started to "know." You kept showing me how very much you wanted to be in my life...whether it was hanging out on my couch waiting for me to come home from late meetings. Or "rescuing" the dog when my residents set off the fire alarms at 3 a.m.

I am so sorry that I doubted your commitment to me and our life together and had that meltdown the night before you proposed. I just wanted so very much to KNOW that we were going to be together. I'm not a patient person and I appreciate how you held me and kept saying 'just trust me, everything will be okay'. That's such an important role that you play in my life. I'm a doubter, a worrier...and you remind me that I just have to trust Him, trust Fate, trust You...everything will be okay.

Throughout my sister's anxiety and depression when she was so unhappy in high school, when I was so worried for her...you said she'd be okay. She is. Through my job searching, my miserable year at THAT one college, through my own anxiety attacks. You are the only one that can hold me and tell me to breathe with you because everything WILL be okay. You have NO idea how very much I appreciate that steadiness and that compassion. I know how lucky I am as a woman, to be loved by a man that can connect with me when I'm scared and vulnerable. Through my dad's heart surgery and my mom's meltdowns..when I had to be strong for them, you were there. I know that you always will be. That's one area of my life where I do know that everything will always be okay. With you.

As mad as you can make me. As mad as I can make you (sorry). I love you with every ounce of my soul, with every cell of my being and with my whole heart.

I am so proud of you and the work that you do as athletic coordinator for osu-n/cotc. The kids you work with need you and you give them such great experiences. You are an amazingly talented man and my heart swells up with pride when I sit in the stands and watch you run around cheering them on and making sure that their games run smoothly. I know they're a pain, but you do SUCH a good job. You will be great. Your "84 year old man" in the back of your head will be very very happy when he looks back at his life.

I can't wait to see what this year brings for us. What you and I will do and experience together. I know that no matter what happens we will be better than 'okay.' It's been 2 years, I look forward to 2 million more.

All of my love, always.

yours.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

oh my gosh i've been tagged!

This is the first time I've ever been tagged...what to say what to say...

Here are 7 random tidbits about me:

1. I have several nicknames, Curly, Pottamus, Mus and Time Bandit or TB. The only nickname that is actually truly descriptive of me is Curly. The others come from my obsession with the show the Deadliest Catch and my undying love for how cute baby hippopottamuses pottami? are.
2. I have traveled outside of the country 17 times. 14 of those times were to England. Yeah....my dad's family is still over there and my parents are not real creative when vacation planning ;-) :-)
3. I had never seen a real mountain until I went on my honeymoon 2 years ago.
4. I actually go by my middle name and not my first name which confuses everyone. Neither of those two names is really Ann.
5. The ring tone that I have for my mom on my cell phone is the chorus of Handel's Messiah that goes "Hallelujah, Hallelujah, HAAAALLEEEEEEEEEEELUUUUUJAH" and she has called me more than once at incredibly inopportune times that have led to much embarassment and I still don't remember to turn my cell phone off.
6. I grew up reading beatrix potter and enid blyton...I can never thank my parents enough for introducing me to the world of British Literature at an early age.
7. I used to really want to be the girl that everyone admired for being sophisticated and worldly...but I've come to realize that I'm so much more comfortable with a coors light and a football game. Now I hope that if I touch someone's life it's because they know they can be real with me and be accepted for who they are at heart.

And now I tag:
My new favorite photographer because I'm pretty sure she's got fascinating things to say

another super funny lady who may just respond to the tag after she gets back from shopping for super fun christmas stuff

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

love this

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous,
talented, and fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God.
Your playing small doesn't serve the world.
There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other
people won't feel insecure around you.
We are all meant to shine, as children do.
We are born to make manifest the glory of God that is
within us. It's not just in some of us, it's in everyone.
And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give
other people permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.

~Written by Marianne Williamson (Speech by Nelson Mandela)

Friday, October 31, 2008

happy halloween!!!

I am so excited for this weekend....just a great opportunity to relax and hang out with the Husband.

This will be a short post as I'm still marathon-advising *aaarrrgh!* but I wanted to do a little public service announcement.

Everybody knows that people can donate blood...not everyone knows that animals can too and that it is really a great thing to do if you are an animal lover and your cat/dog is a universal donor. It's absolutely safe and not painful or anything for the animals and your pet may be saving countless doggy/kitty lives. You can read more about it here...

http://www.vet.ohio-state.edu/bloodbank.htm


So, take a look around your state...see if your pet could save lives.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

marathoning and GO TIGERS!

good.sweet.lord

scheduling for winter quarter is upon us and all of the advisors in the office are quite literally booked from 8-5 solid. i feel like i've run a marathon. thus, my lack of posting.

*wipes sweat from brow* pheewwwwwwwwwww.....................

I have spent the last couple of hours helping P catch up on laundry, fixing a potluck dinner out of all the leftovers in our fridge, eating said dinner and now chilling on the couch watching repeats of 2 and a half men. Oh charlie sheen...how you make me laugh.

I've gotten to spend a lot of time with my family the last couple of weekends. This past weekend we went up to Massillon where P is from for the Massillon v. McKinley football game. It was so so much fun.

When I was in highschool, it was not fun. I wasn't involved, I had my little circle of friends, nobody really cared about the school, the community or the people. It was pretty standard. When we graduated...we all went our seperate ways. Even those of us that went to the same college didn't stay in touch. It's only recently, because of facebook and myspace that I've really started reconnecting with some of them. This was NOT P's experience. Massillon is it's own special community. Some people look at them like they're crazy, but the town rallies around the football team. They get excited, they cheer, they are proud to be from Massillon. P still talks to a lot of the people in his graduating class. Nearly all of them go back to go to games and to spend time in the community every year. I can't imagine what growing up in that atmosphere was like. Massillon is in the middle of the rust belt. It doesn't have a lot of money. It's not all that special for anything other than football. It's such a fun place though...I love it.

We took my parents to the game, it was their first Massillon game and it was definitely a good one. My mom (a teacher in my old school system)was amazed that the town rallies around the school the way it does. Football may be at the heart of it...but how great is that for the kids?

I know that the football team is only 70, 80 guys, the band is there and the cheerleaders...but can you imagine what that experience is like? To be in highschool and play in front of 18 thousand people? To for one friday night have the whole community's attention on you? How fun would that have been if it were your experience?

More importantly than getting to show my parents the game was to let them see the part of P that I've gotten to know and love. We took them to his favorite places, the the little restaurant that has the best wings and potato soup ever. We took a little tour so he could show them the Walgreens he worked at in highschool and the candy company that his dad always gets chocolates from every Christmas. They got to see the town that made him who he is. They got to see the house he grew up in, the one his dad tore apart and rebuilt with his stepmom. They got to see how Stepmom and FIL are straight out of a Pier 1 catalogue and everything is organized just so. They got to see how the town doesn't have a lot, but the people in it work hard...just like P. They got to see his dad's stubborness and his generosity...the qualities that P inherited. It was neat. I think they understand him better and they really enjoyed themselves in his world. For me it was especially fun to hear him tell them the stories that I've already heard a thousand times.

I wouldn't mind someday moving to Massillon so that our kids could live in a community that comes together on Friday nights to support the school and the kids in it. Even if they didn't play on the team or have any part in it...I think that kind of experience can be really meaningful.

3 things:

Ben Heggy's candy
friday night lights
family

Monday, October 20, 2008

instinct

So, I had a student in my office the other day that just creeped the absolute **** out of me. I felt the little hairs on the back of my neck stand up and got the goose pimples and queasy stomach as soon as he walked in my office. I hate that. How do you know when to believe that instinct and when to just ...pass it off as an overactive imagination?

I've had that feeling before when I worked at Ohio U. I had this student who really never did anything bad, although I'm pretty sure he was supplying alcohol to underagers. I just couldn't help but feel confrontational when I saw him. He brought out this icky squicky feeling in me that was either fight or flee. I thought perhaps it was just me, that I was judgemental because he had that 'cocky, popped collar, frat guy attitude'. Then one halloween my grad student, JS, and I were sitting at the front desk watching the drunk kids stumble back in. My grad was chit chatting away and this student walked in and she got very quiet, very still, very ....tense. I watched her reaction to his presence and when he left I asked her if she knew him. She said no and then said "he's not a good person." I asked what she meant and she said, "i dont know. I can just tell. He's NOT a good person."

So what is it? What made both of us feel like that? Does he have some kind of negative energy that surrounds him like a black cloud trailing in after him? What caused that instinct to arise?

Most of my friends who work with college students have a student that stands out in their minds. My best friend from OU, the Cornelia Marie, had a student her first year that she to this day swears had no soul. She was gut-instinct-FRIGHTENED by him. He never did anything to her...he wasn't even the guy that threw the George Foreman grille at her. He was scarier than that guy. It was just instinct that something was not quite right with this young man.

It isn't even as if it's just the male students and we're feeling "vulnerable' as women. I have had female students that creeped me out just the same. I had one woman who I swear would have pulled the wings off butterflies had she been given the chance. I had to call the police once to have her removed from my office. After she was removed from my building, I felt like I had to check over my shoulder when walking past her new home because she might just be crazy enough to do something to retaliate.

It's different than the instinct that you just really dont like someone. That you know you'll never be friends. I worked with a guy, a grad student, who I just always thought was a smarmy bastard. He was always doing things that made him seem like suuuuuuuuuuch a great guy. He was an advocate for preventing sexual assault and all kinds of great stuff. But, I just couldn't like him...always felt guilty about it because everyone else seemed to think he was "fab." This instinct is different though.It's not just recognizing smarminess or even recognizing that someone is troubled or going through a lot or maybe they would be better off in counseling with meds. It's scarier than that.

After the Virginia Tech tragedy, a professor came out saying that she had always felt that there was something wrong with the student who would become that campus shooter. "I know we're talking about a troubled youngster and crap like that, but troubled youngsters get drunk and jump off buildings; troubled youngsters drink and drive," Giovanni said. "I've taught troubled youngsters. I've taught crazy people. It was the meanness that bothered me. It was a really mean streak."

She knew. She said she would have been shocked if it wasn't that student when she heard on the news about the tragedy.

So, when do you believe your instinct? It's not like there's some magic folder in a vault on campus that we can put our notes in that says "dude could be crazy mean, no proof...just a feeling." It bothers me.

I know that little that I do will prevent anything in the world from happening. I can hope and I can pray for the safety of all my friends and colleagues, and I can be vigilant where I can. But there's always the "sleeper." That you never saw coming. Did you know Jeffrey Dahmer once attended Ohio State? He lived in a residence hall. I wonder what people's instincts told them about him.

Conversely, I'm incredibly glad that my life to date has been so untouched by tragedy. I am glad that my sister is at a school that has emergency text messaging and that her residence hall is very safe and secure. I am glad that my university has plans and protocol for the What Ifs. I feel safe here. My office is great and we look out for eachother. We even have a 'code word' for when we might need help. It makes me feel a little bit better about those students that make me feel vulnerable.

That was a depressing post...I just needed to get it off my chest. Since that student was in, I hadn't been able to really stop thinking about him. Blah.

Creepers.

3 things:

that the girls in my office look out for eachother and walk to the garage together at night
that the weather is beautiful and it feels as if nothing could go wrong today
for feeling secure and comfortable where i am.




Thursday, October 16, 2008

pumpkins!!!

Going to the pumpkin festival this evening!!!!!YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY!!!!!!!

They have pumpkin everything.
Pumpkin burgerpumpkincheesecakepumpkinicecreampumpkinwafflespumpkindonutspumpkin!!!!

Where else can you see a 1500 pound pumpkin??

Can't wait to spend some time with P and walk through the streets people watching and enjoying togetherness. I will be exhausted tomorrow, but that's okay, it's FRIDAY!

I woke up last night to the wind blowing like something out of a Halloween movie. Our windows were open and it was chilly crisp. I snuggled back down in my blankets and hugged P tight. I love nights like that.

3 things:

the roof over my head
the roots i've planted
the dreams i have.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

gaaaaaaaah

*thunk thunk thunk*


yes. that's the sound of my head hitting the desk.


my BESTEST friend, Llama has had a REALLY rough year. She's the one that was dating a guy who lived in England. They got engaged in December and then in June he decided that he wasn't going to be able to keep his promises and move to the US (for 5 years til she finished grad school and got her career started) like he said he would the whole time they were together.. (yeah. long story. lots of bitterness and if anyone wants to go to England to yell at him with me, let's get tickets tomorrow.)


SO they tried to work things out until probably the middle of September. Then he decided it just wasn't going to work and broke things off completely.


Llama has gone on a date since then (yay!) but she somehow feels that she is completely awkward and destined to be alone forever.


Let me give you the run down on this girl.


She's brilliant, she's in her last year of grad school as a physical therapist.

She's the nicest person I know.

She is HILARIOUS and can hang with any guy and talk sports, quote Monty Python and still be a girly girl all at the same time.


Oh, and did I mention she is 5'8, 120 pounds and drop dead gorgeous?


WHY CAN PEOPLE NOT SEE THEMSELVES LIKE I SEE THEM??????? WHAT IS WRONG WITH THE WORLD??


AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAGH.


i dont CARE that she joined Match. I think Match is great for people. I do care that she joined Match because she's convinced that she might never meet anyone who will like her!


I understand she's busy and that Match is easy....but come ON just look at yourself and see how beautiful you are!!!!! *thunk thunk thunk*


okay. i got it off my chest. i'm better now. promise.






One of the girls in this pics is Llama, One is MojoMom and one is Chuck and one is me. I wouldn't be friends with them if they weren't wonderful. Do ANY of them look like they would be alone for ever?????

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

amazing idea!

So, consider me shallow...but I get really excited when I see that someone has taken the time to read my blog and leave me a comment. I love posting, just as a way to get what I'm thinking out there, no matter how trivial or mundane but it's even more fun when you get a comment back that says "Me TOO!!!" or "YES! I KNOW HOW YOU FEEL!"

I have been wondering how all these amazing people whose blogs I read get comments from all over the world. I'll be honest, I was a little jealous. And then one of my favorite bloggers Beautifully Imperfect posted this blog about The Secret's In The Sauce.

A whole new world opened right before my eyes! A blog to blog about! WOW!

Since I only discovered SITS today, I can really only say that I have read Imperfect's blog. So I shall tell you what I think of hers....

I love to read her blog because she is such a gentle person. You can just tell that she's one of those people who makes others smile because she's always trying to do good. She is SO in love with her new husband, which I appreciate very much because I absolutely Love love. Nothing makes me happier than hearing about people's love for another person. I enjoy seeing her decorating ideas come to life and listening to her ideas on Faith and Christianity.

So anyway, if you haven't found SITS, I hope that you do! It seems pretty cool!

Thanks Imperfect!

Monday, October 13, 2008

the Pig.



I'd like to introduce you to my little sister. She is an amazing young woman who I admire and respect SO much despite and probably partly because of our ten year age difference. Pig is 20 years old and a first year student at Smaller School in Another State University.

I did not always love her. In fact, when my poor parents told me that they were expecting an surprise baby, I was furious. You see I was a very very spoiled 9 year old. My grandfather was in the hospital dying and my parents were already stretched thin. I did not want to share their already limited time. I threw a book at my dad and made him cry....one of the 2 times in my life that I've ever seen him with tears in my eyes. It didn't phase me then, but now I wish that I had accepted the impending birth with a little more grace.

I generally do not love babies. I am not a very maternal person. I hope to one day have a couple of my own, but to be perfectly honest, I adore them once they can talk, when they can reason and when they are their own little people. The same holds true for Pig. The very first time I held her she pooped. I'm relatively sure that this was a sign that she was as unimpressed with me as I was with her.

Gradually, I grew to love her because she was my sister and you love your family. But then, as I matured and she grew up, I came to love her for the amazing human being and best friend that she is.

Some of the qualities that I appreciate the most about her are her compassion, her sense of humor and her ability to be herself when so many of her peers are more concerned with being part of the crowd.

She wants to teach special education and work with students with autism. She is GOOD at this. She truly has a gift. She is quiet and patient and calm even when being screamed at, kicked or bitten. She sticks up for their rights and is always the first to tell someone when they are being cruel to someone with no defense. And she does this in a kind way without making someone feel that they are stupid or ignorant. Smaller School in Another State University has a very strong Greek Life population and she did end up joining a sorority. She loves the sisterhood and the friendships, but she is quick to advocate for diversity and service when some of her less open minded sisters argue against it.

She is FUNNY. She has an ability to point out the humor in any situation. She considers herself to be socially 'awkward' and rather than hiding those 'awkward' qualities, she hams them up to make people laugh. She isn't funny because she tries to be...she just IS. For example, at a party, a guy she was casually friends with came up to her with this 'line.'

"Pig, we gottstaa get outta here"
"Why do we gotsta get outta here Robadoo?" -pig
"Cuz we can't have S-E-X here Pig."
"Robadoo....we can't have S-E-X anywhere. EVER." -pig
you might not find this as funny as I do...but I find it hilarious, if you could hear her tone of voice.

She doesnt make excuses for who she is or what her foibles might be. She knows full well that she is shy. She knows that she will never been the 'most popular' or the 'party girl' and she would never try to be. If she doesn't want to do something whether it's get wasted, have sex or get high...she doesn't. She explains her respect for herself to her friends, and gains their respect rather than their laughter. Her guy friends call her "the real girl." The one that they feel they always know she's being herself around them. I hope that she learned that from me because if there is one thing that I hope that I've taught her, it is that she is an amazing person. An amazing beautiful soul who doesnt need to try to be anything else.

When she was running track in her junior year, she started dry heaving before races. At the same time her grades were really slipping and I kept trying to convince my parents that this was not normal, that the two were combined. Finally they listened to me, and took a good look at her and took her to a counselor. He assessed that she was mildly depressed and had extreme performance anxiety. It came out that for most of her academic life she had felt that it's always been a little bit easier for everyone else. That she always had a little more weight to carry, some sort of self imposed care-taker issue. I see that so very much in myself and hate that she struggled with it on her own for so long. She is doing better now, after counseling, but still has to remind herself that she is successful, that she is intelligent, that she CAN pass math. I know from my own experience that this is not something you can teach someone and that confidence whether academic or emotional is born from within. But oh how I hope that some day she does realize just how special and smart she really is.

When i was struggling with my own anxiety issues, I found the most comfort from my 10 year younger sister because she was the only one outside of my husband who truly listened to what I was really saying. Who understood what the fear really was. I am so grateful for that compassion.

I know that her strength comes from our shared experiences and from the experiences that she is having on her own now that she is an adult and independent. She has, in her short life, watched her grandparents die from cancer, had a father old enough to be her grandfather, watched her father recover from a mini-stroke, watched him recover from open heart surgery AND was his chaperone and driver for a summer. She has dealt with a mother who though she is a wonderful person, is not an EASY person. She has torn her ACL and recovered faster than surgeons expected through incredible work ethic and personal commitment to her own health and not giving up when it hurt. She has travelled outside the country and within and this summer is spending 6 weeks at a camp for children with Autism. She has been the personal care giver for a handicapped 20 year old for 2 summers. She has been a sister and a friend. In her short 20 years, she has more life experience than some 50 year olds that I know.

This is my sister...I hope that you enjoyed meeting her :-)






Friday, October 10, 2008

lunch break

Are you single? that would be a giant NEGATIVE. I am very much married to my lovely wonderful husband.
Who is are favorite band/artist? The Beatles, though my favorite to actually see perform is Oasis.

How is your day going? slowly. my sutdents keep cancelling their appointments.

What were you doing at 3:00pm? yesterday...ummm i think that's when we were getting ready to go to the gym.

Have any siblings? 1 and and she's my favorite

What movie did you last see? Pig and I watched Dodgeball while we did her laundry

What kind of phone service do you use? Sprint PCS

Do you have a favorite pair of shoes? my sperry topsiders
What is your favorite breakfast meal? scrambled eggs with tomato, onion and worcestishire sauce.

Would you rather be at the beach or be in the snow? snow!

Do you like anyone? the people who read my blog :-)

Would you rather eat or sleep? i think probably sleep.

Do you like long car rides? depends how long and what the purpose is. If we're going somewhere then no because i hate waiting. If we're just driving to drive then yes!

Wanna go for a walk? sure

Rain or sunshine? sunshine!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

What is your favorite drink? the devils juice....diet coke.

Plans for the weekend? tailgate with the mojos, parents coming, etc.

Ever been out of the state? not as many times as i've been out of the country. Though it's catching up.

Out of the country? France, Scotland,Wales,England many times, Mexico, Canada

Who is the best band to see in concert? Oasis.

How much money do you have on you? i have no cash. maybe 5 cents.

Next concert you will attend? Oasis in december

What is your favorite dessert? let's be honest. i love them all.

Anything exciting happening soon? taking my parents to Ps hometown

Text or call? Text. I HATE the phone.

Are you a morning person? not really.

What is the most recent thing you have smoked? salmon? I have never smoked anything in my life.

How many times have you been on a plane? not as many as Blue!

Favorite vacation spot? Tofino, BC

What kind of pancakes do you like? drowned in maple syrup

What elementry school did you attend? Valley Elementary

How tall are you? 5'4

Are you close to your parents? sometimes too close. cut the apron strings y'all!

Do you like to hold hands in public? of course.

Would you have sex in aisle five at Wal-Mart if you could? what is in aisle five of walmart???

Do you like cotton candy? love it.

Do you own a hula-hoop? no

What kind of car do you drive? dodge caliber

Can you do the "Soldier Boy"? i can't do any dance. i am rythmically impaired

Do you own a pair of "boots with the fur? absolutely not.

What color is your umbrella? One is black with multi-colored dots.

How many times a day do your brush your teeth? usually 2 when i'm at work. more when i am home.

What brand of toilet paper do you use? P likes to buy the really cheap 1 ply.

How far have you traveled from your home? far but i always go back

Do you own a waffle iron? No but i have a quesadilla maker

Have you ever been in a wedding? Yes my friend Chuck's

Do you know your mailman's name? Mail....man?

Do you like to bet on horse or dog races? i dont but i would bet on the hossies.

Would you go to the moon if you could? Probably not but i might take the elevator to the stars that was in the news the other day.

What is the highlight of your day, so far? it's gorgeous outside.

What type of alcoholic drink do you order at the bar? i'm a beer girl.
Do you think senior citizens have sex? ever heard of viagra?

Have you ever shot anything and killed it? absolutely not.

Would you eat a live spider if somebody was going to pay you 5000 dollars to do it? probably.

Have you ever had a pedicure? yes, but i always feel sorry for the person who has to touch my feet. i hate feet.

What's your favorite part of the body to look at? definitely not feet. eyes probably and then that little muscular indentation thingy by the hip and lower ab. mmmm.....

Thursday, October 9, 2008

"sick" day

so....maybe i'm not sick. but i was so so tired. and P was home.

so. I stayed home from work today.

It was a wonderful day, we had so much fun and got soooo much accomplished.

Here's the list:

Took the Prius to get its oil changed
Went to Waffle House for eggs and waffle
Got prescriptions filled at Walgreens
Went to the garden place and bought
a burgundy mum
a giant blue ceramic flower pot
a dwarf lilac bush/tree thing that will be delivered on 10/18 to make
my front garden complete for the season.
P mowed the grass
I planted my burgundy mum in my giant flower pot
I split out some of the giant grass bush from the back yard and seperated the split into 3 new little plants and planted them on the side of the house to hide the utility thingy.
went to the gym
went to on our annual pumpkin getting trip
got 4 pumpkins
got 1 spaghetti squash for dinner tomorrow
got one jar of apple butter
played football in the park near Pigeon Roost Farm
Came home and grilled Hot Dogs for dinner. Yes. we were very healthy today.
Watched Thursday Night football.
Blogged.

3 things:

pumpkins
apple butter
sales at the garden center

:-) What a fantastic day.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

The Wickanninish Inn

I guess I did forget to say where those pics were from. Sorry!! It's quite possibly the most beautiful place in the entire world. Not warm though :-)

Taken from www.wickinn.com

The Wickaninnish Inn, Tofino Canada, has become a landmark - the enchanting and critically acclaimed destination on the awesome western edge of beautiful British Columbia. No trip to BC - and indeed, Canada - should be made without experiencing this remarkable Tofino destination.

October in Tofino is all about our new fall menu, romantic beach walks, and Thanksgiving - with oceanfront seats! Lounge on your balcony with a glass of red wine, or stroll to our cozy Driftwood Café for some hot chocolate by the wood-burning fireplace and picture windows.

If you're longing for some fall spa time, use our convenient spa treatment request form to inquire about your Ancient Cedars Spa treatments now.

While most of Canada lives winter under a blanket of white, the West Coast of Vancouver Island grows green, green, green as it witnesses the fury of howling gales, 20-foot breakers, and enough rainfall to keep our pristine temperate rainforest alive and well. All this drama is courtesy of the Gulf of Alaska’s Aleutian Low, formed from the growing contrast between the warm air over the North Pacific and the cooler landmasses of Asia and America . The ensuing natural furor is a spectacular site for the newly initiated, or for the “seasoned” winter storm watching enthusiast.

Since 1996, the Wickaninnish Inn has been the original winter storm watching destination on Canada’s West Coast (see our aptly-named Storm Watchers package) but how, oh how, did we even come up with this concept? Leave it up to the McDiarmid family for originality, but long before plans for the Wickaninnish Inn were even inked on blueprints, the family hiked a rugged shoreline trail to their cabin built on the first point west past the Inn. When a winter storm hit, a frequent occurrence from November through February, the McDiarmid kids would sit by the fire and watch the waves explode against the rocky shore – so much better than television! Some thirty years later, The Inn was designed so that every single room, suite and public space would allow for a view of the ocean – and that all guests would live the excitement of viewing our legendary West Coast winter storms from luxurious comfort inside. For a closeup of the storm action, reserve a couples massage in Ancient Cedars Spa's Cedar Sanctuary, our hand-adzed cedar cabin right out on the ocean’s edge.

Of course, we encourage you to don your Wickaninnish Inn raingear (handily hanging in your closet) and venture out for your own taste of storm season! One of our favorite pastimes is beachcombing along Chesterman Beach, but really, all beaches in the area can prove very rewarding with nature’s bounty. If you’re lucky -very lucky- you may just end up with a Japanese glass float. These hand blown pieces, looking much like big glass bubbles, were once used by fisherman to keep their nets afloat. It’s rumored that millions of these popular collectors’ items are swirling around with the Pacific currents, so happy hunting! Once your beach walk is done and your camera (or spouse) is begging for mercy, you can retreat to the Driftwood Lounge for a hot beverage while your raingear hangs in our custom boot drying closet – Yes, there is such a thing, after all, we’re on the West Coast!

Another recommended activity during winter storm season is spending the day at Hot Springs Cove, waves permitting. These mineral hot springs are located within the Maquinna Provincial Park (read: no “I visited Hot Springs Cove t-shirts” for sale here), and accessible only by air (a 25 minute flight) or boat (about 70 minutes, give or take some potential nature sightings). We’re happy to pack you a delicious lunch, arrange for your transportation, and off you go for some therapeutic soaking.

Of course, with Tofino’s reputation as “Surf City, Canada”, we must pay homage to the winter surf. A Tofino winter is true surfing paradise, with giant waves breaking on seemingly deserted beaches. Tofino is home to a number of professional surfers, and this is their time to take advantage of prime conditions. Novice surfers will want to enlist the aid of one of our local surf schools, whose experienced instructors will help you select the right size wetsuit and ensure you catch that first wave. If your high school track & field injury is still acting up (no, no, we believe you), you can always watch your loved ones take their surf lesson on Chesterman Beach – right from your table at The Pointe Restaurant.

Now that we’ve told you all about this winter storm season, it’s only natural that you travel to the Inn expecting tempestuous skies and the wail of a powerful wind, but we must warn you that Tofino winters also bring days of brilliant sunshine – yes, sunshine peeking in between winter storms! That’s the magic of our rugged coast and its temperate rainforest: Mother Nature runs the show, and she does it on a whim! In other words, don’t forget to pack your sunglasses.

There’s so much to see and do –or not do, if your wish is to curl up by your fireplace- in and around the Wickaninnish Inn during winter storm watching season. Be our guest during this most unique of Canadian winters – and experience the original winter storm watching destination, the Wickaninnish Inn.

Monday, October 6, 2008

peacefullness.

Do you ever just really wish you could go back to somewhere that you've been before? I don't mean in the metaphorical sense like you wish you could change time or right a wrong. I mean very physically, all of a sudden you just really long to be somewhere specific. I love to be here again. Raw, cold, peaceful...beautiful.

this is where i go when i picture my happy place!











sleepy

great weekend this weekend. had soooo much fun with the Pig.

however, am seriously lacking sleep and this Monday is NOT GOING QUICCCCCCCKLY.

i did however re-read one of my favorite children's books this weekend. Enid Blyton's the Enchanted Wood. Blyton wrote over 800 titles, mostly children's adventures. She has been criticized for various things, overly simplistic writing, gender bias, race bias etc. in some of her books...but if you look at the time period in which she was writing, i think that becomes fairly self explainatory. anyway...i loved her stories when i was growing up and it's been really fun to re-read them as an adult.

this is a list of some of her recurring characters in the Faraway Tree series...to give you an idea of the creativity and fun :-) (taken from wikipedia)

Characters
The first house the reader encounters is that of the Angry Pixie. It is a house with a tiny window. You might feel curious to look inside, but you dare not unless you want a bucket of ink or water thrown at you.
The owl, who lives in the home after the Angry Pixie's and before Silky's, is a normal nocturnal owl. He is a friend of Silky's.
The next house belongs to Silky, the fairy. It has a small yellow colored door, a tiny knocker with a shiny bell. She is called Silky because of her long, silky, golden hair.
You can always hear Mr.Whatzisname snoring all the time, he sounds like an aeroplane.
The next eccentric neighbour is Dame Washalot. She spends her time washing her clothes and throwing the dirty wash water down the tree.
The last house,which is round, belongs to Moonface. There is a slippery-slip in his house, a slide which runs down to the bottom of the tree. You will always have to slide down on a cushion; you don't want to get your clothes worn out.
The Saucepan Man lives with Mr. Watzisname. He is tied down with all his saucepans and kettles. Sometimes, he cannot understand what his friends are saying because of all the noise from the pans tied to his body.
The Saucepan Man's mother lives with Dame Washalot. She runs a cake shop.
The main characters are Jo, Bessie and Fanny. Fanny is the youngest, Bessie is the elder and Jo is their big brother. They live near the Enchanted Wood and are friends of the residents of the Faraway Tree.

anyway...what was your favorite children's book? My 2nd favorite is Beatrix Potter. I love her paintings as well.

3 things:

my beautiful husband
my simply gorgeous sister
my parents

Friday, October 3, 2008

helllllo lovely

all i have to say is that my sister's coming to visit me this weekend and she and i are going to a soccer game. for this reason and this reason only....




oh yes my friends. i am going to go watch beckham play soccer.

my sister and i are pretty convinced that he will see us in the crowd and come over to say hi.

yeah. that's right. we're going to go ogle the pretty man.

dont judge me.

i can be married and ogle.

hopefully he wont talk as his voice is disappointingly high and squeaky.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

uuuummmmm i want to be a doctor....but can i drop chem 101?

I have not been eaten by freshmen. Though, if one more tells me "i have to drop my math class. i can't understand my professor. shouldn't it be a rule that they speak English?" I may eat THEM.

dude. seriously.

yes. they have driven me to resorting to "dude."

funny moments so far:

"do you define plagiarism as using 5 exact words in a row? I mean, is it okay if I use 3 exact words?" -- seriously over-worried boy

"ummmmmmmmmmmm.....like...........i want to be a doctor." very spacey young woman who came in to drop chem 101 (not the chem she needs for med school as it is the chem for non-science majors) because it was too hard and she doesn't like chemistry in response to my question about what she wanted to be when she graduated.

"can i take all my math and science at a community college where it's easier so i can pass?" another possible doctor.

"i don't understand why I'm in the exploration program, i already have a major."- very confused student
"oh? what major do you think you declared?"-me
"pre-med"-student
"umm....pre med is not an actual major.....you kind of have to major in something before you get to med school."-me.
"oh. crap.guess i'm in the right place then." - student.

"i can't wake up before 10, so i need all my classes to be in the afternoon."
**how the hell are you going to get a job and how did you survive high school????***-my inner monologue.

"i'll do anything to get back into engineering....can't you just back date the paperwork so that it looks like i dropped the class before the deadline?"

"can my mom just talk to you? she explains things much better than me." -phone appointment.


these, my friends, are the children of the future. those upon whom our hopes and dreams hang. our future doctors, engineers and politicians.

i think i may move to Canada.

i still love them. they crack me up.

3 things:

1-my amazing wonderful husband who hugs me in the grocery store
2- Catfish Biffs pizza.
3- Imperfect's post and her question about favorite dinner time memories. What a warm happy feeling to go to bed thinking about :-)

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

school days school days


Oh the freshmen are SO freaking adorable!!!!! I absolutely adore them. The are all wandering around campus with folded up and dog eared campus maps that they try to hide in the palms of their hands JUST IN CASE any upperclassmen might see them and give them grief. You can see the kids that are 'too cool for school' (my 830 a.m. class is like that) and then you have the kids that are just so very very very excited to be there (my 330 class is like that.) Now granted, the 330 class could just be a little more awake, but it seemed to go much much better. Also, the computer in my classroom for my 330 class did not eat my disk like the CD drive in the 830 class did. I hate technology. I'm pretty sure I lost a little credibility when my students could hear me say "oh crap" from behind the giant multimedia tower.

I digress. Back to the Freshmen.

They come in all shapes and sizes...some of them look like models and movie stars and have more outward sophistication than I could ever hope to have. Some of the girls are coiffed, gelled, teased and blow dried into perfection with designer name short shorts and mile long legs. Some of them are chubby and pierced and picked their clothes very carefully trying to look like they're not trying too hard. Some of the boys look like they're 15 years old with stress pimples, ball caps and shirts that they think are "cool" (have safe lunch...use condiments). Some of the guys make me feel like a dirty old women when I gawk because, dear sweet lord they didn't make'em like that when i was 18!! Clearly they spend more time in the gym than those of my generation. They are SO excited to see someone that they know in their classes or to hear the name of a town that's somewhere close to their hometown.

Some of them are very clearly used to being the smart kid with the tough academic schedule. They think their arts and humanities and literature classes are going to be too easy of a schedule and they think they should only be in organic chem, immunology and microphysicalbioastronautology. Then there are some that are just overwhelmed by the new-ness of it all and are filing into my office panicking afraid they wont succeed.

I love my job :-)

I made them do an ice breaker where they had to stand up and introduce themselves and answer a question from my zobmondo question book.

how would you have answered?

would you rather be clumsy or forgetful?
would you rather lick under the fridge or under the toilet?
would you rather drink a gallon of hot dog water or a shot of foot sweat?
would you rather be abducted by aliens frequently and have no proof or have your best friend be invisible?
would you rather eat a teaspoonful of wasabi or crushed red pepper?



PS. the picture is from the presidents convocation in St.John's the old basketball arena.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

dun dun dun dunnnnnnnnnnnnnnn

survey classes start tomorrow.....


*quakes*


i hope they dont eat me alive.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Holland Typology

So for my survey classes, I have to prepare an activity that will help illustrate John Holland's Career Codes.

Basically Holland's theory was that there are 6 main types and any number of combinations of those types. The types are Realistic, Investigative, Artistic,Social, Enterprising and Conventional (RIASEC). Based on how you score yourself on the assessment, you end up being Realistic/Investigative, Artistic/Social, etc. etc. The core of Holland's theory that people of like personalities or career types find themselves in similar careers. Similar to other personality tests, each "TYPE" has lists of characteristics that are common to the type and thus have suggested careers that people with those characteristics may excel in.

So...before I get to my REAL question, let me ask this....What type are you? I'm not going to make you go through the assessment...but take a look at the descriptions and see which fits you best.

REALISTIC people are characterized by competitive/assertive behavior and by interest in activities that require motor coordination, skill, and physical strength. People oriented toward this role prefer situations involving "action solutions" rather than tasks involving verbal or interpersonal skills. They like to take a concrete approach to problem-solving rather than relying on abstract theory. They tend to be interested in scientific or mechanical rather than cultural and aesthetic areas.
INVESTIGATIVE people prefer to think rather than to act, to organize and understand rather than to persuade. They are not apt to be very "people oriented."
ARTISTIC people value self-expression and relationships with others through artistic expression. They dislike structure, prefer tasks involving personal or physical skills, and are more prone to expression of emotion than others. They are similar to investigative people, but are more interested in the cultural-aesthetic than the scientific. SOCIAL people seem to satisfy their needs in teaching or helping situations. In contrast to investigative and realistic people, social types are drawn more to seek close interpersonal relationships and are less apt to engage in intellectual or extensive physical activity.
SOCIAL people have high interest in other people and are sensitive to the needs of others. They perceive themselves as liking to help others, understanding others, and having teaching abilities. Social people value social activities, social problems, and interpersonal relationships. They use their verbal and social skills to change other people’s behavior. They are generally cheerful, scholarly, and verbally oriented.
ENTERPRISING people are verbally skilled and use this skill in persuasion rather than support of others. They also value prestige and status and are more apt to pursue it than conventional people.
CONVENTIONAL people don't mind rules and regulations and emphasize self-control. They prefer structure and order to ambiguity in work and interpersonal situations. They place value on prestige or status.


I tend to be Social/Enterprising which stands to reason given the satisfaction that I've found in the helping profession of student affairs. I do think that the social and enterprising are slightly conflicting and I've found that to be true in my daily interactions with my students. For example, the social side of me wants very much to be able to help someone figure out their life...the enterprising side of me wants to convince the student that i'm right about what they should be doing. Most of the women in my office fall under the same primary category of Social with smatterings of the other 5 types as secondaries.

So here's my REAL question. My idea for an activity to illustrate these types is to use movies and tv show characters and play clips and have the student guess what type that character might be.

So far, I have Dwight Shrute from The Office as Conventional. I could use Tim the Tool Man Taylor from Home Improvement for Realistic....but I'd like to find a more modern character. So, based on the descriptions above...what characters stand out in your minds that would fit the definitions of the Holland Types??

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

windy week

The remnants of Ike blew over Ohio and knocked out powerlines all across the state. Trees are down everywhere. It looks like a tornado passed through. Good news though! My roses that were in pots in the front yard did not blow away and the tree outside my office window is intact! I can't imagine living in a hurricane or tornado prone area. The wind was bad enough for me! My thoughts really go out to those who have had their lives turned upside down by the storms.

I am busy at work prepping for the 5 survey courses that I have to teach, making sure that I have all my supplies and syllabi updated and prepared. I got everything into a binder and made some lists yesterday so I feel a little more organized. I can't wait to get the first week over with. P's about going nuts with his job. It's the first time he's ever really worked in a student affairs type job and it's hard for him to get accustomed to the fact that you have to really sit down and think through each step of each event in a logical order rather than just doing it all at once. He is so anxious to do a good job that he's having a hard time understanding that it's okay to block out some office time on the calendar to sit down and make a list of things to do or something for yourself. He feels like any time the phone rings, he HAS to answer it...even though he has a perfectly good voicemail system. So essentially what's happening is, he sits down to work on a project, the phone rings, someone walks in and he gets 10 emails. I told him he needs to start laying some ground rules for his staff and trying to get people onto his schedule a little bit more rather than him running around on 20 different people's schedules. He is, afterall, the director. I think it's funny that the things that now come naturally to me, after working in the haphazard student affairs environment for so long are not second nature to him because usually he is FAR more organized and logical than I am. His prior jobs have really been positions where he had so much autonomy and so little contact with others that he was able to just blast through projects and work on them with little to no interruption. It's quite the culture shock for him I think. I helped him organize his thoughts a little bit last night by taking each event that he has coming up and making a to-do list for them. Then we sat down and looked at what his two student assistants could have delegated to them. That's another area that P is having difficulty with....delegating. Ohhhh my love, it WILL get easier...I promise, I promise!!!
I'm kind of bummed because next week is going to stink. We're hardly going to see eachother because he has an event each night of the week and I'm going to be going to bed early so i can get up and be fresh for survey class and the craziness that is apparently our Autumn Quarter Start.

I bought bright green pants at Old Navy to wear with a navy blue shirt...and while I really liked it in the store, I'm not so much thinking I like it in my office. I'm feeling more self concious! They are REALLY green.

Ah well, time to go to staff meeting....be well all!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Hello, my name is Ann and I'm a buckeye-holic.

It's now 5 minutes into the 3rd quarter....and it's getting worse. How depressing.

This is the extent of my obsession...and the reason for the frantic posting from 10 minutes ago. My husband and I are "that" couple. You know, the cheesy ones that incorporate their favorite football team into their wedding? The ones that everyone shakes their heads over and goes "oh my.....well, they ARE unique." Yep. That's us. Check it out.







In no particular order....


my aunt made our cakes.



We changed into jerseys for the reception.
Please note, he did not actually smash the cake into my face. :-) good boy.







Our colors were indeed scarlet and grey.





The grooms cake was the stadium.




We had pictures taken at the stadium after the wedding. The handsome and studly boys.





and the girls... weren't my bridesmaids gorgeous? The one on the left is P's sister. Then there's Chuck, the one who married the guy in the LA national guard, then Llama...she's the amazing one who just had her heart broken, and then my sister, The Pig. You can see why I call her Pig. She's such a fatty ;-)
That nickname actually came about because on occasion she snorts.






pa-freakin-thetic

it's half time...this is what my QB looks like.
i mean...he's just standing there! waiting for the giant pulverizing semi truck of a d-line to flatten him into road kill! what the HELL Sweatervest!?! you're killing me!!!!!!!! i THOUGHT we'd lose. I did NOT THINK that at HALF TIME i'd need PROZAC!
aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaarrrrrrrrrrrrrrgh freaking freaking bad.
unless the 2nd half is better.....tomorrow's gonna be rough.
OH and why does Brent Musberger have to sound so damn condescending????? At least kirk herbstreit's looking good today.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

in response to Blue's question

I was in my senior year of college. I was a resident advisor and we'd had to come back to campus 2 weeks early for our intense training that would prepare us for dealing with our freshmen students' life crises. We had one whole day devoted to "Crisis Intervention" with the counseling staff at the University's Counseling center. There were probably 500 of us and they broke us all up into different training sessions like "eating disorders" "suicide" "grief" etc. I was at "eating disorders" with my friend and we were listening to a counselor drone on and on about how to recognize signs of anorexia when my supervisor came into the room. He was always impassive...hard to read, but I could tell he was trying to subtly interrupt the counselor and I wondered why. I heard someone out in the hall say 'it's really bad,' and I thought that perhaps someone had died...someone on campus. My supervisor finally got the counselors attention and said that the training had been cancelled and that we all needed to report back to the main auditorium.

We sat down and the Director of Residence Life...one of the most eloquent men that I've had the honor to meet, stood in front of us and told us that there had been a national tragedy. He said that New York City had come under attack. At such a large college, we have many out of state students, many from NYC and immediately people in the room burst into tears and cries of disbelief. At first, we thought that a bomb had been dropped...then he explained what had happened and that we were to go back to our buildings and be with eachother and call our families and friends. He said that if we needed to...the counselors were staying in the building to talk with anyone who needed extra grief or anxiety counseling. We all looked at the cluster of counselors, there were maybe 10 to our 500 and they were all embracing and in tears. I wondered who would help them. We walked back and watched the replays of what had happened, the replays of the towers falling...together. It was unreal, sitting in our little lobby on tables since the chairs hadn't been re-installed from the summer break.


I remember patting my friend Luke on the back, he was in Army ROTC and his ex-girfriend went to school in NYC. He couldn't get ahold of her for quite some time. I remember thinking...this is going to change things, but not really understanding the depth to which things would be changed. Not imagining that 7 years later the political, international consequences would be ongoing. I think I was more naive then.
I think that shared experience changed my life greatly. I saw the college staff and how they banded together for the students that were in desperate need of a safe place to cry. I saw my college, where football falls above all else, cancel a game and hold an incredibly touching memorial instead. I saw a crowd of 110,000 people, the next week start chanting U-S-A U-S-A when instead of script Ohio, the band formed the initials of our wounded country.
I was angry that journalists put their lives and the lives of EMS workers on the line trying to get a story...I cared so much more about the people in the story than about the story itself. I started to think that perhaps journalism wasn't for me.
I learned that across the nation college students started staying closer to home, started worrying more about their security, saw colleges trying to catch up...and wanted to help because college should be a safe place.

alot of people were by themselves, i happened to be with 500 other students. maybe 10 of whose names i remember, even if i knew them back then.

I didn't know it then, but two of my closest guy friends would end up in Iraq several years later. I hadn't met him yet, but my husband and his closest friends would be deployed to Europe to provide auxillary support. I didn't know that the girl sitting next to me who I hardly knew and thought was a little odd would end up being my best friend and that she would one day marry a man who has been to Iraq and Afghanistan twice and may go again. I didn't know that my other best friend who I'd also met that same week and hardly knew on 9/11/01 would be affected so greatly because immigration laws would become so much more stringent and she would eventually fall in love with someone from another country...and have her heart broken when her fiance said he couldn't move here.

That one day still changes my life.

things:

1: bret whitaker National Guard

2: matt marfongelli US Army Infantry

3: luke anderson UH-60L Black Hawk Pilot

4: drew prud'homme National Guard

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

ode to pharmaceuticals and honoring marriage

allegra! oh blessed pharmaceutical breakthrough!

i broke down yesterday and called the dr. and begged him to prescribe anything that would turn the faucet that was my nose into a decidedly off position. he called in the nice generic version of allegra and for $5 i now feel back to my normal human, non-drippy self.

i hate drugs....HATE drugs. however, i am beginning to thank my lucky stars that i live somewhere that has the technology to make me feel like myself even if it's through chemicals.

*breathes in* hear that readers???? that is the sound of free and clear sinuses!

another good thing is that if YOU breathe in, i can hear YOU because for the first time in 2 weeks, my ears are not plugged up too! yaaaaaaaaaay!

Today feels like fall. I love it. I had pumpkin spice creamer in my coffee and I think I may make some kind of creamy soup for dinner. If I could get P to stop at Great Harvest Bread Co. before the gym, we might have a nice hearty soup with a crusty french bred. Mmmmm fall weather rocks my socks off.

Soon it'll be time to pick pumpkins and decorate for halloween. I cannot wait! I hope that P and I get to take advantage of some of the fun fall festivals that are around us this year. Last year we were too busy with having just moved into a new house etc. We missed the Circleville Pumpkin show and a few others that we love.

P and I have been having some good discussions lately. We've talked about what it really means to "honor thy marriage" and how do we "honor eachother." I think that overwhelmingly it's something that my married friends take lightly and that P and I too haven't really given enough in depth thought to what it means. As we complete year 2 of marriage (11/11/06) we've been contemplating it more. I google searched "honoring your marriage" and found this article by Jerome Daly at a website called "you're not alone." Now, I'll put a disclaimer here... I haven't got the foggiest idea of what this website is and neither support nor deny any of its claims... I just liked what Mr. Daily wrote here

"Now, fifteen years later, we are very different people than the ones who squeaked out those celestial vows. Did we have even a clue then? Yeah, a clue... but not much more. How do you begin such an uncharted life? Getting married is at the same time the most natural and the most foreign step most of us ever take. What do you honestly have to go on? Besides the premarital workbook that you may have scribbled in incoherently in your love-drug buzz, where do you find guidance for the specific shape of your relationship? Even within a Christian context, how are you supposed to understand this mysterious creation called marriage? And once you're past the initial giddy awkwardness of it all, the question is still a valid one: what shape should your marriage take? What is the connection between the marriage you observed growing up and your unique shape as a couple? Should you follow your parents' example, or should you work hard at doing things differently? When you find that things aren't working, is it possible that you're stuck in structures and mind-sets that God never intended for you and your spouse to adopt? What are God's specific intentions for your marriage?
Marriage is the quest that takes you beyond the forms of your parents' relationship-no matter how good or bad-and into your own destiny, held in the heart of God and waiting to be unwrapped by you. "

That's exactly what P and I have been talking about...the SHAPE of our marriage and what we want it to be like. Do we want to follow our parents examples or how do we want to change those structures and mind sets. What is the specific intention that He (or She) has for our marriage.

We've also talked alot about how we make decisions as a married couple. We make a lot of decisions together...but then there are decisions that we simply have to make apart from eachother and are we following the same value constructs and guidelines. I'm not talking about the silly stuff like "what do I eat for lunch today," I mean like when my parents or Ps dad weighs in on a subject in our lives and gives the 'parental advice.' How do we respond? Do I talk about being frustrated with P with my parents? Is that disrespectful if I haven't talked about it with him and told him about my frustration? When P's dad (while shopping for garden stuff) says 'oh this is the way it has to be done and there's no other way you know that that's how we did it in our house while you were growing up blah blah' does P think to himself 'but that might not be how WE want to do it in our house?' and is he able to explain that to his insistent father?

I guess we started talking about this because as more and more of our friends are getting engaged and married, we're seeing that on the surface many of them don't appear to have changed their relationships much since when they first met. I don't at all mean to sound judgemental because I love my friends and their partners and think that overwhelmingly they are happy and secure in the marriages. However, I want ours to evolve...I want ours to continually strengthen and grow. I want P and I to be able to look at eachother and know that the other cares deeply about being a Family of our own. Whether it's always just the two of us, or if some day we add children to the mix...I want to be able to say that I honor my marriage through constant learning and growth. I want us to be strong enough to create our own marriage and not just model after our parents, great qualities though they may have.

So, readers...if you're married (or about to be Wolfy ;-) ) How do you/will you honor your partner? What are your thoughts on what that really means? It's not just words in the vows... how do you all follow through? I'm curious...and I love love and stories about people in love.

Do tell?

Quotes

Carry out a random act of kindness, with no expectation of reward, safe in the knowledge that one day someone might do the same for you. Princess Diana
 

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