Thursday, December 31, 2009

where i'm spending the new year


more to follow later :-)

3 blessings:
safe travel

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Not a Creature was Stirring not Even a .....

Happy Holidays and a Blessed New Year to all :-)

3 things:
my family
p's family
our friends

Monday, December 21, 2009

But baby it's cold outside...

Even in the snow, life is beautiful

Lady, the 'boss mom' of the herd

Baron and Buster

Beautiful Miss horse's favorite 'girlfriend'

Colors, my 23 year old big baby and his friend Ace in the background

*** clearly, i have been playing with free

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

all you need is loooove

love is all you need

the holidays are fast approaching and p and i have done ALMOST all our christmas shopping. we've got one more gift card to buy and one gift card to send to his sister. we've spent hundreds of dollars (that we budgeted for! go us!) and haven't yet spent a dime on eachother. why? well...because.

you see, both of us look forward to christmas...we look forward to going to my parents house for the giant celebration of presents and food and love and we look forward to going to his house for the post-christmas relaxation, the gift exchange and the walks in the park by his house....but with all that, comes the realization that we don't really do christmas by ourselves until January. So p finally asked me today what I wanted for christmas when we finally get to celebrate after the new year....and my immediate answer was PHOTOSHOP. I covet photoshop. I lust for photoshop. I WANT it BAD.

but the thing is...he could get me nothing and my christmas with him would be perfect. he doesn't need to take me to do anything special. because all I love. and I know so well that i have that. I have his love. what greater gift could he give me?

9 days out of 10 i'm a normal rational human being...but that 10th day, damn can i be a basketcase. my anxiety will rear up and kick me in the butt...and of course i take it out on him. my worrying about things that might never happen make me fuss and fret and snarl...i can be bossy and i can be demanding and moody and in general just a sasspants. and...he still loves me.

i can have total meltdowns over my lack of confidence and fears and sulk and cry..and he still loves me.

i can be jealous and a jerk....and he loves me because of it.

that, my husband, is all i ever need from you.

i am SUCH a lucky girl.

so...just to keep this from being nauseatingly sappy.....i still reaaaaaaaaaaaaaalllly WANT photoshop. hint hint husband...hint hint!

blessings: this face is worth all 3

Monday, November 23, 2009

giving thanks

I figured that after my horrendously snark-filled post from the other day, I should get back on the track of being thankful for all that I have. And, internet,truly, I am thankful. I am thankful for all of my students, no matter how cranky they are, because as much as I sometimes hate them, I am so very grateful for the opportunity to play a part in their lives. I know without a doubt that some of my students are going to be the people that find cures for cancer, bring peace to the world and create the next great novel. I am thankful for my friends and my colleagues because they keep me going and keep me grounded. I am incredibly thankful for my family...I don't think I even need to say why. And, I am so very grateful for my husband. 3 years of marriage later, and I still look at him and think to myself, Thank you GOD for putting this man in my life.

So, our lineup for Thanksgiving is this...we're going up to Massillon for the traditional big family get together with turkey and stuffing and whatever else P's step mom whips up. Then I have to work at bbw on Black Friday for a few hours late at night. Then Saturday, I will be doing some cooking for my family and P's mom and her boyfriend. I am very much lookingforward to seeing my parents and my sister. It's just nice to be able to sit down together and eat a fancy shmancy dinner...but still be relaxed and have fun.

I'm planning on taking some fun pictures of my dog for our christmas card this you will be my guinea pigs on which picture to actually send. Expect that post soon.

Oh, and last week...yeah, it was just a really really crappy week. I'm fine now. I have regained my cool that I temporarily lost. There's not much I can do when I've apologized, when I've explained, and when I've tried my best. So, at some point, I have to learn to let it go and not let other people's reactions bother me so much. I'm not very good at that though. I am so afraid of not being good enough, that when I get criticism, I tend to over-react. It hurts particularly most when I know in my heart that I've tried the absolute best that I could and still made a mistake, or still get disagreement over my decisions. It's like, I just want to shout "don't you SEE how hard I'm working to be a A) good advisor B)good friend C) good teacher, why can't you just UNDERSTAND that and not critique me!!" But, I know that that's not going to happen...and I know that criticism is how we grow. Doesn't mean I like it though.


Friday, November 20, 2009

in which Mt.St. Ann explodes

Here's the thing. I am a GOOD person. I am a NICE person. I try my absolute damndest do be a CARING person.

and yet, some weeks, it feels like the world is poo-ing on my head.

I don't understand how some people get a pass for their behaviors and are just able to act however they want whenever they want and nobody bothers to correct them. whose world is it okay to send an anonymous scathing email telling me how much I pretty much suck because I wont cancel classes the day before Thanksgiving when THE WHOLE UNIVERSITY does not observe that wednesday AND your student's class got LAST WEDNESDAY off?

In what world is it okay to yell at me because your schedule is inflexible??

Why are other people allowed to flake out and make stupid mistakes and I'm expected to be understanding and kind and yet if I make a mistake I'm a terrible person who doesn't care?

Why do social rules apply to me and not to other people? I just don't get it. It's not that I don't think that I've stuck my foot in my mouth before and no one has said anything...I Know that I have inadvertently hurt people's feelings and no one has said anything because they 'understood' I was having a bad day... What I'm talking about is the situation where someone KNOWS how mean they are being, KNOWS that what they are saying is just not acceptable or appropriate and they just go right ahead and do it anyway. What is WRONG with them??? Never in my life EVER EVER EVER in my life have I blatantly just treated someone who was trying to HELP ME like they were dirt beneath my feet. If anything, I'm the one who goes back to secretly leave an extra tip when other people in my party are rude.



pity party is over...thanks for listening. back to the line of disgruntled and angry asshats.


my sister is the new Chi Omega president for her sorority
my mom loves being retired
my dad hasn't spontaneously combusted from the 2nd blessing :-)

Saturday, November 14, 2009


we may not have the best quarterback

our coach may be a 90 year old conservative play calling man trapped in a younger man's sweatervest




I WAS HERE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

That's right. After the game, I went onto the field and stood on the block O, the 50 on the 50 yard line and sat in the endzone....

Word's can't describe. It seems a little silly to the rational and logical girl in me, to be SO very excited about touching the turf where a bunch of 20 year olds play a game...but, in reality, I'll openly admit, I was a little misty eyed :-)

GO BUCKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

helllooo red?

not real sure what possessed me.....
given that i have to go to P's reunion in 2 weeks i'm thinking this was poor timing to lose my mind
i do feel a bit feistier...
wanna box?
i'll blame the amoxicillin that i'm taking for the plague that i've had for 2 weeks. stupid fall. stupid bronchitis.
perhaps i'll start speaking in an irish accent today.... me hair suggests it...

Monday, October 12, 2009

I WON SOMETHING!!!!!!!!!!!

I <3 the pioneer woman!!!

I am so excited!!! By sharing a story of a family member who dresses in innapropriate garments, I have won...wait for it...WAIIIIIIIIIT FOR IT. A coveted copy of The Pioneer Woman Cooks

I do not think that if you have not visited Pioneer Woman's blog that you can begin to understand how thrilling this is. The woman, can seriously cook. And her cookbook has STEP BY STEP PICTURES. STEP...BY STEP!

Do you know what this means to me??? This means that I will KNOW what the recipe means when it says "stir eggs til thick" (this apparently means til they are consistently yellow) and what "stiff peaks" mean when making meringue!! OHHHHH it is a culinary guide for the gourmet inside all who have less than stellar kitchen techniques and need STRUCTURE and GUIDELINES to make the meal look the way it's supposed to.

On top of that Pioneer Woman is a fabulous photographer and I am learning to properly use my camera thanks to her.

The Cotton Wife is also a fantabulous photographer and has the most beauifulest blog ever. I envy her farm life and really mostly the farm house...Ohhhh to live in a beautiful farm house... I bet it's shower wouldn't be leaking incessantly despite repeated attempts to fix it. Why do I say that? Because a farm house is my dream house and despite its age, a dream house wouldn't leak. It would know better.

If you would like to visit these women's blogs, I highly recommend. In the meantime, I'm off to count my blessings...

3 blessings:
the Pig will be visiting me in t minus 6 days
my dad is turning 72 on the 18th and is still doing fantastically 2 years post heart surgery
my aunt from England is coming to visit on the 14th!

Monday, October 5, 2009

100 Blessings

It's my 100th Blog! Thus, 100 blessings that I'm grateful for.

1. my husband who loves me more than i could ever imagine being loved by anyone
2. my mom, she brings p and i soup and dinners so we dont have to cook when they come to visit. she is extraordinarily generous to both of us
3. my dad, he walks me through unclogging sinks on the phone, and still says a prayer with me before i go to bed when i stay at their house
4. my sister, my shining star, who never fails to make me laugh
5. mojomom, she challenges me to grow personally, professionally and spiritually and also for our "am i being a good wife?" checks...
6. llama, her sense of humor
7. chuck, she's just always been there for me
8. cornelia marie, everyone needs a friend with whom they can drink in excess and then pretend to be a crab boat on the bering sea with. at age 29.
9. that i got to rekindle my friendship with my childhood best friend and that she is on her way to becoming a mom after years of trying and i get to be a part of that now. i would have missed it had we not decided to be friends again...
10. that my family, friends and i all appear to enjoy good health despite my worrying that disaster will strike.
11. that i 100% without feeling like i'm "supposed" to say it because that's how marriage is supposed to be can say that i married my best friend.
12. that Colors, while expensive, is still alive at age 23
13. Sonford Q. McSquigglebottoms. Best.Dog.Ever. yours will not win this argument.
14. That i have a job that i love
15. That i work with people i like
16. That i feel like personally, i am where i'm supposed to be at age 31
17. that even though i wish we made more $$, p and i can live well on what we have
18. finding my grandmothers recipes, handwritten on scraps of paper, and framing them
19. that i'm slowly learning to eat healthier and lose weight
20. that its currently football season, i love the festivities and school spirit
21. that the students i work with genuinely love their school and i get to help them have the best possible experience they can
23. dark chocolate.
24. that my father in law and his wife make me feel like part of their family.
25. that my family has passed on to me a love for cooking and that i can successfully make recipes that i remember my grandmother cooking
26. i get to see my sister in 2 weeks
27. through the wonders of the internet i can talk to my cousins in England and 'befriend them' as adults.
28. picking pumpkins out with my husband and playing football with him in a park on our annual 'fall date'.
29. the monday night football chimes... buh buh buh buh BUH BUH BUH!
30. books. any kind of book. well,except for sleazy romance...
31. shared memories with people i love
32. all my internet bloggy friends who i've met through blogger
33. for having lived in athens, oh for three years...i think i became a better person there.
34. for people who are allies
35. for the lonely trees that you see from the highway. they're out there all alone , but they're beautiful
36. for the way the leaves change colors in the fall
37. for the way that the air feels from october to december
38. mountains, even though i hadn't seen a "real" one until my honeymoon.
39. for this place
40. salmon.
41. for pine tree scented candles
42. christmas trees in general
43. the traditional family christmas that we always have, complete with reading Twas the Night Before Christmas before bed on Christmas Eve, waking up and going downstairs to find presents, christmas breakfast, christmas dinner and reading the christmas story in the Bible that night.
44. the noises my parents make at night and in the morning when i'm laying in bed. no matter what house it is, they're always the same...cupboard doors closing, checking the locks, winding the grandfather clock...they are ingrained in my memory.
41. comfortable underwear
42. joy in simple things, like when you slice cheese and find out that you have exactly the right amount to go on the crackers you grabbed out of the bag or finding out that a coworker already made the coffee when you really need some
43. starry nights
44. dick francis horse racing mysteries
45. my education. i never had to fight for it...and i always took the access i had for granted until i got to college and met people who werent as lucky as i.
46. for that matter, all of the priveleges that i have been granted my whole life...
47. for the awareness that they are priveleges...and that not everyone has them, and for people who try to lessen the gap.
48. Ye Olde Trail Tavern in Yellow Springs, OH- best juke box ever
49. how blue and green our world is
50. roses and poppies my two favorite flowers in the world
51. bed knobs and broom sticks
52. M*A*S*H- something that my sister, my dad and i all can share
53. beatrix potter and enid blyton- they helped me learn to imagine
54. the way the horse barn smells
55. sports stadiums
56. ohio state football
57. stadium hotdogs with stadium mustard
58. firepits
59. that P has introduced me to so many things that I may never have experienced without him, massillon football, hobo pies, camping
60. that fundamentally, p and i work well together and share values and beliefs.
61. that my parents tried to bring me up to love God and to have faith, but that I had to learn on my own what that really meant.
62. for that day in the horsebarn where i pleaded with God to send me a sign that he was listening and cared about my family and suddenly at the end of my prayer all the horses went from standing still to galloping across the field kicking their heels up in sheer joy of being alive.
63. that signs exist if you pay attention to them.
64. that many things in the world are spoken in whispers which makes them all the more special when you hear them
65. being comfortable being alone
66. honestly being able to say at 31 that i like who i am
67. how when you lay on your back sometimes the sky looks curved. i used to think that it was entirely possible that we were a 'snow globe' for someone out there
68. bad keanu reeves movies
69. hybrid cars
70. that people are still trying to scientifically prove the existance of aliens and bigfoot. i appreciate a world that refuses to let go of Possibility.
71. that i have gotten to travel to 8 different countries already in my life
72. my family crest is an oak tree and the phrase on it says "Stand Sure" which is something that i feel is an integral part of my life...
73. bagel sandwiches
74. nutella
75. that my little sister is much 'healthier' than i ever was at her age, mind body and soul.
76. for my parents 35 years of marriage
77. for our third year of marriage 11.11.09
78. for people who openly show their feelings, they make the world a more interesting place. think about what our lives would be like if there were a "no celebration rule" on life.
79. optimists- those of you in my life keep me hopeful
80. realists- those of you in my life keep me grounded
81. that no matter what happens, i know that i will always have Hope.
82. my grandparents...the good and bad memories, they're all part of life.
83. making stone soup with my Amma
84. my moms soup recipes and how making a bowl of her chilli instantly takes me back to being about 8 years old
85. that i am so very incredibly loved by such wonderful people
86. that i have so many people that I can love in my life
87. the smell of tomatoes in the garden
88. my grandmothers ring that i wear every day
89. never ever having had to have braces
90. the roof over my head and the home that p and i have created
91. being healthier now than i was at this point last year
92. that my friends in the military have so far, all come home safely
93. that my anxiety has pretty much gone away...or that i've learned to manage it to the point that it seems to not bother me anymore
94. that i can send my sister random nonesense that very few people would understand and she knows exactly what i'm talking about and will respond. For exmaple: "if mom's hyacinth and i'm daisy, does that make you rose or violet?" "definitely violet" (our last text messages) bonus points to the person who knows what we're talking about.
95. my husbands green eyes
96. that he loves me no matter what weight i am and thinks i'm beautiful no matter what.
97. random acts of kindness, doing them, seeing them, experiencing them
98. being able to take pretty pictures of people's makes me smile to show them how i see them.
99. knowing without a doubt that i am blessed
100. that my life is amazing

phew...i could go on...but 100 i think is enough for now. it was actaully harder than i thought to list 100 because so many of them seem silly...but it's true, they are blessings no matter how small.

what are some of yours? top 10 anybody?

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

proof that God has a sense of humor

So Today, I have had just an epic fail kind of day. Nothing major, just little annoyances of which the culmination was my microwaveable soup practically doing a back flip 2 minutes in to its heating time and exploding in the microwave in a tomatoey alphabetty tsunami.

as i sat down with my now hot but slightly less than full alphabet soup, i sighed and said to myself, "somebody thinks my life is funny today".

I spooned out a mouthful and looked down to see that my soup spelled


wish i'd had a camera. this for real happened.

3 blessings:
that i have soup
that i have a job
that i have friends

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

98 blogs of text on the wall...98 bottles of text....

Write one more and put it up next and there will be 99 blogs of text on the walll....

ahahahahahahahahaha I am hilarious.

Actually, not. This week has blown goats, let me tell you. Yes, that's right. I said it, blown.goats. We have been super busy at work which is...fine, but abnormal for this time of year. We usually do not see students SO much before the quarter starts. I don't know if it's because we're a little short staffed since we have 2 new people who are not quite yet seeing students full time or what, it just seems like 8-5 goes by in a blink and I barely have time to breathe. I usually don't mind the busyness as I really love meeting with the students, but this week I have just had some doozies. I'm kind of unraveled from listening to their complicated issues. It boggles my mind how an 18 year old can have SO MUCH going ON. In addition to the craziness, one of my favorite colleagues left to go to another was her last day and it was just kind of sad. She was the person in the office who was always willing to just shoot the breeze and take a 5 minute break with me to just be...goofy, y'know? Look at other people's wedding pictures or look at bridal magazines since she's HOPEFULLY getting engaged soon. I'll miss her and a little bit of the 'glitter and sparkle' left the office when she closed her office door that one last time. We werent really friends outside of work, I'm not really friends with anyone outside of's just not how life works out with me really. But we were friends AT work. *Sigh* Life goes on, and I know we'll keep in touch, she's moving up by P's hometown so when P and I go up I'll give her a call. It's just...I don't like change and our little office has had quite enough of it. We need a couple months of sedentary life to regroup.

On the other hand, my absolute favorite time of year is fast approaching. On Monday the students will officially be on campus. They will have moved into their new residence halls and apartments and will be starting a new year at Ohio State. For many, fall signifies the beginning of the end...end of summer, end of life. For me, it's always been the rebirth. The new freshmen come in, people are energized and ready for the next step in their lives. They've had summer break and reconnected with their families and their high school friends and they're ready to come back and see everyone from their "other life" that they missed. Football season is in session and people are decked out in scarlet and grey no matter what day of the week it is. The air is crisp and cool and the leaves start to change. Campus is gorgeous in the fall. It's vibrant and just so alive. It's easily the BEST thing about working on campus.

I have hopes for this year...I hope that the swine flu pandemic doesn't affect us too much because outbreaks on campus are frightening no matter whether it's a bed bug or a bacteria. These are people's babies and they are trusting us to keep them safe and healthy. It's frightening when you think how fragile the 'ecosystem' of a college campus is. I hope that we go another year without any on campus tragedies, we have been lucky. I hope that the new freshmen love the university as much as I do and that they find their true calling while they are in our program and that I can help them find their way there. I hope that I can maintain my enthusiasm and love for my job so that I can serve the students to the best of my abilities. They are young, and though they are bright and independent, they need advisors and personnel on campus that love their jobs and are dedicated to doing their jobs 100%. They may drive me crazy on a regular basis...but they still need help.

3 blessings:
my friend llama is starting to heal after the tragic loss of her grandmother
my friend chuckface is strong beyond her own knowledge and she will be okay when her husband deploys for the middle east, i know her strength even if she's unsure
my husband who continually supports me and cheers me on every single day no matter how grumpy i am and how down i get, he is truly my heart and soul.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

i am a slow blogger

so it's my 97th post today...i really thought that i'd perhaps be past 100 by now, I think that i probably would be but there are times that i'll write a post and 'crumple it up into a ball and toss it in the trash' or as we do in the internet world...hit delete.

i'm thinking of doing a give away for my 100th post like everyone else does...but i might wait til my 113th since 13 is really my lucky number.

i have been working out with a personal trainer in the attempt to lose some of the millions of pounds that i gained over the course of the last 2 years. i have lost inches...but not much weight which is depressing. i know it's only been a month, but i kind of want it to magically fall off in one giant lump.i do enjoy that i am stronger and that the things that i could barely do when i started, i can now do much more easily.

i am looking forward to the OSU v USC game on saturday, but i'll be honest, i'm not rael hopeful. i just wish that i could wipe the smarmy smirk off pete carroll's face. ugh. he just irks me. i'm sure that he's in actuality a very nice man...but seriously dude....your quasi-richard gere look bothers me.

i really wish that i did not have to be at work today on this gorgeous gorgeous ohio i'm just going to write some random fun stuff about myself for your viewing enjoyment

1. when i was a kid i would frequently pretend to be a horse with my friend elizabeth. we were always really cool horses that could talk and solve crime. my name was frequently Black Gem because we would play this game while swimming and I had a black swimsuit with little gems on it. Yes. we were horses and we lived in the water.
2. in 9th grade i had really bad allergies and they made me really cranky. the boy who had his locker next to me used to make fun of me and my allergies. one day in a fit of allergy induced rage, i waited til he bent over and then i moved the top locker door directly over his head. he stood up and nearly gave himself a concussion. i pretended like i didn't have any idea what happened. i've secretly felt guilty about this since then.
3. the same boy tried to cheat off me in health class when we were taking a quiz in which we had to label all the parts of the male reproductive system. i purposely labelled all of them wrong and waited til he turned in his paper to switch them to the right answers. i have never felt guilty about this as it's ridiculous that a BOY would have to cheat off my 9th grade blushing virgin self for the answers.
4. my personal trainer is beginning to think i'm 'special'. i have no muscle memory or coordination. he demonstrates something while facing me and it takes me at least 40 seconds to figure out how to reverse the mirror image and do it myself.
5. i have lists of words i dont like. i seriously have to restrain myself from telling people not to use some of them. or from curling my lip and saying 'ew'.
6. i could eat rice every day of the week. my favorite ways to eat rice are to saute tomatos and dump it on top of rice w/soy sauce or to steam broccoli and put it on rice with a little butter and parmesan.
7. similarly, i could eat bread with tomatos and salt every day of the week and be perfectly happy.
8. 6&7 are why i need #4.
9. my husband has 2 webbed toes on each foot and i think it's really fun to stick things in between them. blades of grass. pennies. whatever i can find.
10. i rarely, if ever, feel overwhelmed. even when i have a trillion things going on. i do not think this is healthy because i'm pretty sure it leaks out in other ways. perhaps in my obsession w/bread and rice.
11. my friend mojo mom could probably add at least 10 more weird things that i do to this list...perhaps she will leave an anonymous comment.

3 blessings:
webbed toes
gorgeous weather
my mom sent me home w/chicken salad so i wouldn't have to pack my lunch this week.

Friday, August 28, 2009

greetings dahlings

'Twas the best of times....'Twas the worst of times.

Well, perhaps I should say 'twas the okay-est of times was the grossest of times...
The last couple weeks have been kind of "meh". P and i have been driving to Dayton on a weekendly basis to paint my parents' deck and sand my parents' deck and spray wasps and kill them on my parents' deck and run screaming from the wasps and make my brave strong husband kill them on my parents' deck...not necessarily in that order.

The screaming might have been first.

The parents remain in England though they are returning on Monday. The Pig is back at school where she turned 21 but due to her sororities rules about RUSH she is not allowed to drink legally or illegally until September. So, it was really kind of an 'un'birthday for her.

She had the first day of her biology class today...the professor let them out early so he could go home to tend the pig he was smoking for his bbq this weekend.

Have I mentioned that she goes to school in Kentucky?

Due to the deck painting I have had aches and pains and bruises and scrapes like a 5 year old learning to rollerblade. coincidentally the Weather Gods decided to inflict a plague of ragweed on us the like of which has scarce been seen before. I take prescription drugs for this people...and yesterday, yesterday, it was like I hadn't taken anything at all. I was one constant leaky faucet of crystal clear pollen laden snot.

That's right. crystal.clear.pollen.laden.snot.

*shudder* I'm surprised it was not draining out of my ears as well.

Today, thanks to the glorious,soaking,drenching,beautiful rain that we had last night. I am back in the land of the dry and only slightly itchy. I'm hoping the drugs keep working so that I can get out to the horsebarn to see Colors...poor thing hasn't seen me for weeks.

Part of the absence from the horsebarn has been allergies, and then the other part has been because 2 nights of every week have been reserved for my new Personal Trainer. I hate him. Well, I love to hate him. I love that I'm actually seeing weight loss (5lbs in 1 month and a total of 7 inches have disappeared from various parts of my anatomy and NO i will not tell you how many inches from what parts). However, I'm pleased with this progress. I feel good about it. This is good. Also, though I loathe, despise and want to kick him in the g'nads sometimes...Personal Trainer clearly knows what he's doing and as much as I hate stepping up onto his stupid foot tall stool and kneeing a punching bag 10 times....ON EACH LEG....I guess I'm okay with the loss of inches.

Has anyone ever noticed how very very slowly Fridays go? I swear I have been here for 10 hours already. I would pay THEM to let me leave right now.

On a side note, I wrote this for a friend of mine who should know who she is when she reads this...

To have hope...
even the smallest grain of it
means that you have something
so when you feel that you have nothing
remember Hope.

To have faith
even the faintest whisper of it
means that He loves you
so when you feel that you are unloveable
remember Faith

To have friends
even far far away
means that you have someone
so when you feel that you are alone
remember me.

3 blessings:
for all the kiddies going back to school and our neighborhood being quiet in the evenings
for sunsets on the lake
for movie night with P him.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009


Flamly: (n) That's what my sister and I always call our stems from her inability to pronounce the word right when she was younger.

My parents and sister have been in England since August 1st. My parents are staying there until the 31st but Pig had to come back Monday so that she can leave for school on the 21st. I picked her up from the airport Monday evening and then took Tuesday off so that we could go to lunch and I could take her shopping for her 21st birthday present (she got some killer silver shoes and a gorgeous haircut). Monday night while P was at the gym, Pig and I sat out by the fire pit and roasted marshmallows and talked about her trip and our parents and the amusing things that they do, their habits and idiosyncracies.

I love those inside jokes that you can only have with your family. Only someone who grew up in your house gets them and laughs with you. It's a different level of understanding when you're with your family. Your friends may "get you" and they may be able to comprehend who you are...but your family, they understand. It's understanding born of shared experience, both good and bad. It's always refreshing when I get to spend time with Pig because she and I are very much alike, and despite our age difference (I'm the big sister by 10 years) have SO much fun together.

Often, even with my best friends, I feel like I have to worry about whether they understand where I'm coming from. I feel like I worry alot about whether they interpet what I say a certain way, or that they're looking for a subtext that isn't there. I check myself before I say things and I second guess myself when I do say something because I've always felt awkward, like people are prone to misinterpreting me. It's a huge challenge for me because at heart I want nothing more than to just say "look, this is how it is." and be 100% straightfoward and upfront with people. But the thing is...when you do that, people get mad. And I hate, hate, hate, having to run around and try to make amends for something that I didn't even say or mean..they just interpreted. Oh, I know that I'm at fault here too... I do know that at times I can be insensitive. At times, I can be too blunt and too impatient and too sarcastic...but not all the time. Not most of the time. I mean the kind of thing where I'll put up a facebook status and I get 5 individual messages asking if it was directed at friend a, b, or c.... when really, I was just quoting a line from a movie or a song.

Family's different...there's no awkward second guessing of what you can say. You can lay your feelings on the table,bare for them to see and they don't look for anything that's not there. Perhaps I shouldn't generalize and say 'family', perhaps I should just say "sisters". Lord knows, my mom looks for what's not there :-). But that's what makes her Mom.

Sisters, Family...they know you. They know what you're trying to say, they know the feeling behind what you've said. I know that not every family is like that...and I know that even my own family isn't like this 100% of the time. No one's perfect. But I do consider myself exceedingly blessed in this aspect of life. My husband and my sister, my two kindred spirits, they get me. They understand me. I'm extremely lucky in that my husband is caring enough to have taken the time when we were dating to really find out how I work, to understand my motivations, to listen to what I was trying to say and to hear the unspoken reasons behind the words. I think when you love someone, you do that...because you want to understand them the way that their families do. He's a listener and a senser, my husband. He's extraordinarily in tune to the way that I feel...he can read my face like he can read a map of our city. He knows when I'm worried, when I've had a bad day...before I ever open my mouth. People ask me all the time why P and I have such an obviously happy marriage... the easy answer is, because my husband's amazingly kind and TRULY understands me.

My dad can tell when I'm having a bad day just by how I say hello when I call home. My mom can tell when I've been crying from 60 miles away. My sister knows that when I say I'm mad about's really because I'm hurt by B. She knows that I don't like to be vulnerable so I get mad instead. And, she calls me on it. Lucky.

I laugh alot with my family. To the point where I cry I am laughing so hard...I love that SO much. It's that kind of laughter where you're not worried about whether you're going to snort because they'll all snort with you. It's unfettered and free. It's easy and comfortable like that broken down sweatshirt that you got your freshman year in college and just can't part with. Man do i love that faded scarlet hoodie.

Do you readers ever feel that way with your friends? Being totally completely relaxed and comfortable without ever having to second guess what you say? Or are you like you mostly feel that with your immediate family? I dont know why this was on my mind so much this morning...I think, it's just because when I spend time with P and pig, the next day, I realize how very relaxed I am and how much fun I had. With Pig being in college, and my parents being in Dayton , it's easy to forget how amazing they are, and how comfortable I am with them...and then I'm reminded and it sticks out in my mind. Anyone who reads this blog knows how much I love my friends and consider them blessings in my life, but anyone who reads this blog also knows how much I struggle with feeling like I dont fully fit in with anyone but my family and my husband and my horse. It's the paranoid introverted nerdy little girl inside my head poking and prodding and saying "what if they don't REALLY like you...." So that's why I asked how you all feel with your honest. Do you check yourself too?

check: (v) to make a sudden stop; pause: The horse checked before he jumped.
to restrain; hold in restraint or control: They built a high wall to check the tides.

3 Blessings:

Being accepted for who I am
My friends whom I do love so very much
My flamly

Tuesday, August 11, 2009


One of my favorite writers introduced me to a new website today. She is a phenomenally heartfelt and encouraging writer in her own...right. But she found this new site called (In)Courage. I think it's great. Everyone needs a little inspiration and hope in their day and this is just the place to find it. She asked, in her post, what (in)courages us...and I left her a lengthy comment that I'll use as a post for now...

My (In)couragements...

holding my husband after a long day and how he rests his hand on the small of my back.

the earthy smells of the horse barn

how no matter how much you screw up or think you are having an EPIC FAIL kind of day...dogs,cats and horses don't judge you, they accept you for yourself.

simple things like the smell of tomatoes and evergreens

thinking 'i can't do it' and finding out that 'i can..i am...i did' whether it's running a mile or being patient.

That's where i find hope...where i find love and encouragement. In those simple things.

Monday, July 20, 2009

are we ever really in control?

So, long time no see!

I got a little caught up in the beauty that is an Ohio summer and haven't posted anything in a while. Surprisingly, in that absence, nothing much has been going on. I have been horseback riding a few times which is amazing andwonderful and great. The horse is starting to settle down in his new barn and is creating less problems for the barn owners. He has been suprisingly good under saddle considering that I have not ridden him in years and years.

I think this shows the importance of training them well when they are young. It's not quite enough to just break them, and then hop on and hope they figure it really need to have patience and teach them all the little steps in between. My cousin in England, who I admire greatly spent 2 years working with her baby horse on the GROUND before she ever sat on her back. Without patience and proper lessons....they wont ever be fully trained! So, to whomever trained Colors before I got him...thank you thank you thank you for training him carefully and diligently so that when I finally got back on him after a 4 year hiatus...he behaves like a gentleman. Ground work and patience are very very important people!

Don't you think the same could be said for many aspects of our lives? I mean think about it. Before you enter into a have to do the groundwork first. Just like you have to teach a young horse what "whoa" means. You have to learn your partners limits and needs. Before you enter into a long term have to figure out just where you can rely on her and just how she needs to rely on you. With your children, you have to decide what rules you will have total control of and what rules are up for negotiation, you have to be able to say 'baby's ready to fly' and let go, but you have to know when it's okay to do that. With your family, you have to learn to trust them, but also to know that sometimes there are going to be rough patches that you have to forgive and learn from.

With horses, you're never fully in control. A horse doesnt submit to what you want him to do because he's totally domesticated. Watch horses in a field sometime. You'll get it, you aren't in control. They let you ride them because they want to please you, because they trust that you're not going to hurt them. Similarly, a well trained horse will look out for you on a trail ride. The lady who owns the barn I'm boarding Colors at has this horse named Baron. He is "the boss" in the field and when you're on the ground next to him, you can just sense that he is the dominant personality. He's got just a little bit of a wild streak...but when Mel rides him on the trail...she has no fear. None, at all. Even though she is terrified of heights, she will ride him on a cliff trail with a drop off on the side with no qualms because he is brave and he will take care of his rider. Similarly, he knows that she will never ask him to go anywhere that could be dangerous to either of them. He trusts her too. She has spent a lot of time developing that relationship with him.

I guess my point is...we don't control our marriages, our families, our friends, any more than we control a wild creature. They do what we ask because we have mutual respect, because we have understanding. They do what we ask because we take the time to lay down the say "this is where I won't budge, can't compromise, this is when you have to do what I need you to." We take the time to listen to them understand that perhaps they're afraid to go through that last gate, or over that last jump, and we let them face it head on, and give them reassurance that it WILL be okay, and we don't force them into it with no concern for their fears. We LISTEN to what they're saying to us, and they in turn listen to our subltest signals. When I ride Colors, I watch his ears...they're constantly swiveling back and forth to hear what's going on around him, but they also turn toward me, so that he can hear my little reassurances, my little commands. I know when he hears something scary because he'll turn his ears, then his head so he can get a better look at it. I learned to anticipate those moments and to talk him through them.

I don't think that people are so different than animals...our basic instincts are pretty much the same. We need reassurance in all aspects of our relationship. We need direction, we need to know we belong and that we can trust those we belong with. Additionally, it's a never ending process. Just because Colors seems to be doing well, doesn't mean I can just say 'it's perfect!' and quit working with him. I still need to exercise him before I ride...I still need to practice halting and backing and changing direction. We can't get complacent in our relationships with friends and loved ones....we can always challenge ourselves and eachother to grow.

So, I guess what I'm getting at is...think about your relationships, have you done the groundwork? have you earned trust? how does this make your relationships more successful? most importantly, do you have the patience to keep working on them even when they're not being the easiest "ride". Can you keep a cool head, calm hands and warm heart even when you hit the dirt? It's my goal to try that this week in all aspects of my vacation to Asheville, North Carolina looms and we all know that my family, though wonderful, does not always agree on everything and is not always very nice to eachother. Cool head, calm hands, warm hearts will prevail though...I hope!

For the record, all is well in my life ;-) Just a little self reflection and analogy in general for a Monday morning.

3 Blessings:

Simple weekends with my husband
Lunches with good friends
Unconditional love from my family

This picture is of Colors the first week that he lived at his new stable. He was standing off to the side watching the rest of the horses in the herd. You could almost read his thoughts, "I want to join....can I please? Where do I fit in????"

Sunday, June 21, 2009

a horse is a horse of course of course and

no one can talk to a horse of course
unless that horse of course of course is

the wonderful misterrrrrrrrrrrrrrr ed

well. i do talk to mine... despite his not being mr.ed...but more importantly...

I GOT TO RIDE TODAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

i can't tell you how long it has been since a saddle was on that horse. I am SO incredibly excited. We didn't do much but walk in a circle in the round pen. but OH MY GOSH. it was incredible.

now....if only i could get him to stop freaking out when the other horses leave their stalls and he's left alone.

anyone got suggestions?

Thursday, June 18, 2009

ann ominous and the week from helllllll

i make it a rule absolutely not to blog about "real work"

I may blog about stupid things my students say

Or how awesome I think my coworkers are...

but I can't say what I really want to right now

which is...this week was the week from hell and I really hope that my work place returns to it's usual state of happiness, glitter and rainbow sprinkles.

it's been very sad :-(

3 blessings:
that i still have a job
that those of us who work here are strong people
that we will adapt.

Monday, June 8, 2009

random thoughts...

It's raining. After a gorgeous, beautiful,simply wonderful weekend the advent of Monday brought with it rain, humidity and general hair frizziness causing weather. Kind of like Nature's way of saying "well, you have to go to it might as well suck outside."

Weekend Recap: P and I ended up dogsitting for MojoDog since his original dog-sitters decided they could not handle him vomiting on their Pergo floor. Well, I ask you, if you allow MojoDog to eat 2 rawhide bones and consume 2 gallons of water all at once...what exactly do you THINK will happen? The Mojos are on vacation in Florida and called us in a panic thinking their dog would be roaming the streets til they got home. Like we would let that happen. Ah well, it's good for our dog to have some company. That being said, we took the dogs on a 5 mile hike and let them swim in a lake on Saturday and then Sunday we went down to Lake Hope and went kayaking...I'm crispy. Forgot the sunscreen whoops... It was a great, relaxing weekend and I enjoyed myself thoroughly.

Switching Gears: How do you know when you're reading someone correctly? I will be the first person to admit that my facial expressions don't always mirror what I'm internally thinking or feeling. I THINK that I've gotten a lot better at this in the last few years but, I used to have problems with people thinking that I was very cold and aloof because I didn't ever look happy or inviting... Additionally, I have always had a terrible poker face for when I think something is stupid or if I'm annoyed. I think that I'm doing a slightly better job on both counts as no one has commented on them recently...although, perhaps that just means that people are too polite to now? Well anyway, I have always been able to read people very well. I am fairly observant and can easily pick up on people's emotions and little facial cues to what they are thinking. In part, this is what makes me a good friend and a good student affairs professional...I hear what people are really saying and what they really mean. Is it any coincidence that one of my favorite new tv shows is Fox's Lie To Me? Most of the time this "talent" (hah) is fun because I usually know who is crushing on whom and when someone's hiding a good secret (like engagement or babies). Sometimes's the bad stuff.
That being said...I catch people's eye rolls, their sighs and their little looks that they don't conciously know they're exhibiting fairly often. Most of the time, I just try to ignore them because despite my straight forwardness, I really dislike confronting people.I would rather be uncomfortable than make a situation worse. This unwillingness is usually a good thing because though I'm observant, I'm also a little paranoid. I will frequently assume that your eye roll or sigh is related to me or something that I've done. It's a HORRIBLE habit and frame of mind to have because I spend a lot of my time, on guard, thinking "oh his/her mood about me? did I do something???" My parents, friends, sister, colleagues...all of them are subject to my scrutiny because I'm really afraid that I've offended, annoyed, bothered and generally pissed them off.

I know. I'm trying to learn to not take everything personally, to not assume that someone's 'aloofness' or 'eye rolls' are directed at me. Because, as I stated before...I'm the queen of those things, or at least I was in the past, so Lord knows how many people I made feel like I was annoyed with them or whatever. Karma you certainly do come around don't you? You are a b....

Anyway, I guess the point is that along with counting my blessings, I'm trying to more accurately represent how I'm really feeling and remembering that my non-verbals can be just as loud as my voice. The reason? Well, because I want people to really know where they stand with me. To know when I respect them, to know when I enjoy them. I don't want to be remembered as the girl who was "aloof" like I was in college and high school. I want to be remembered as being warm, and caring and kind. I'm not really planning on GOING anywhere...I kind of made this sound like I'm thinking of my legacy after I die... I just mean, that I want people to associate me with a good feeling rather than of questioning where they stand with me. Isn't that a better way to live? It's such an easy thing to control too...I mean, we all struggle with controlling our weight, our grey hair our age lines, our health...what about controlling the image that you leave behind?

Think about it...I'm sure you can pinpoint some people from your past that left good memories and those who left bad memories for the way that they presented themselves. I know I've got at least 4 that I could name off the top of my head. I wont though ;-)

Now I'm not saying that I'm leaving my happy introverted, hermit crab shell. That's not what I mean at all.. I love it in here, it's nice and safe and warm. But there are times when I think we can all be open and inviting and caring toward others while still maintaining our quiet, calm, and introverted nature. It's not easy for me...but I think I can do it. So, Goal: appropriately display feelings and emotions while maintaining sanity and understanding that while one has baggage and bad days ones face and actions do not have to alienate people on a regular basis. Ready Set Go. I'll work on the paranoia later. stop rolling your eyes at me! hahahah.

So anyway, that's my random thought for the week...

that it's raining so I don't have to raise my water bill watering my plants
fresh peaches and strawberries from the farmers market
the chicken and asparagus that is calling my name for dinner tonight.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

livin for the weeeeekennnnnd

It dawned on me today as I was sitting in my chair fidgeting and wishing that it were the weekend that as of tomorrow, I will have been at this job for one year. So let's recount shall I? One year's worth of reflection on the big moments in this year...

I started this job just after my dad had heart surgery...he is doing well, though cranky as ever.
My mom has made the decision to retire and her last day is...ummm....August 1st?
My sister has successfully completed her sophomore year in college and is going to be a camp counselor at a camp for children with autism.
My husband has also completed one year at his new job and has grown and matured so much in that year, despite managing to P**** of one of the college president's by not introducing her first at a sports banquet. I maintain the arguement that her secretary told him she would not be coming and he didn't know any better really since none of the admins have ever come to anything before.
I learned to successfully (most of the time) manage my anxiety w/o medication *whoohoo!*
I stopped worrying so much about whether I fit in in my new office and have found that the women (and 2 gentlemen) that I work with are quite fantastic, wonderful and friendly...and...shock of all shocks, they actually seem to enjoy my company unlike the last crazy place where I felt like I was an alien from another planet.
My self esteem has rebounded for the most part from the afforementioned horrendous experience.
I have learned to keep count of these small blessings and to be thankful for the simple little things in life because they are what really matter.
I found that I love love love my job because of the little moments when, even though they don't say it, you know you helped a student find their way.
I refound my confidence that I'm good at my job.
I learned that I am not good at parking in parking garages.
or driving on the highway in the winter.
I learned that I have road rage for people who get to close to me on the highway in the winter.
I started caring more about the environment.
I started caring less about whether I was home alone in the evenings when P had to work.
I bought a pair of green pants.
I still get mad when people poke the tomatoes in the store and leave fingernail I'm growing my own unpoked tomatoes for the summer.
Mojokid started walking.
Mojomom realized how great a parent she is.
We bought a Prius...and a reel mower.
We planted flowers
I moved my horse to Columbus
We learned to be truly "WE" as a husband and wife team.

I think that out of all of those, family aside, the three biggest highlights are:

learning to actively count my blessings
finding that i work with a truly gifted set of colleagues who help me grow professionally and personally and helped me restore my confidence in myself as an employee and colleague.
Further cementing that P and I have a solid foundation in our marriage, that we have gotten through bad times together and he still loves me, and I still utterly adore and love him.

What are your 3 biggest highlights from June 2008 to now?

Friday, May 29, 2009

here horsie horsie horsie......

Well, I've been talking for quite a while about how I was going to be moving my horse to where I live and it's FINALLY happened. Memorial Day weekend, P and I drove down to Dayton and with the assistance of the farrier (guy who trims his hooves) we got him into the trailer. It was...not traumatic, but not easy either. The farrier had some, umm...let's call them "techniques" that he used to "inspire" Colors to go forward into the trailer rather than backwards over the fence and back into the field.

The drive took almost 2 hours because there were so many police out and well, you just can't go 70 with a 20 foot trailer w/a horse in it. By the time we got him to the new stable, Colors was drenched in sweat, his eyes were rolling wildly and he was terrified of everything. He practically fell out of the was so sad. After he calmed down sufficiently to get him into the barn, we put him in his new stall and kind of cleaned him up a little and then after it got cooler he got put out into the field with 2 of the mares from the "herd."

Here's where I insert nerdy animal behavior observations...please don't feel obligated to read.

Horses are herd animals. Their instinct is NOT to be alone. They want to belong, but like any large group, the herd has a heirarchy. It doesn't matter how big the boss is, only that there is a boss. Horses will fight to keep that hierarchy and they will protect the ones they feel need protected. So, you really can't just put a brand new horse into a field full of 11 other horses.

SO, like I said, Colors was put into a field w/two of the mares. Their names are Lady and Abria. Lady is the boss mare. She was none too pleased with Colors arrival and immediately herded Abria away from Colors and into a corner and then went back to show Colors that she wasn't going to be having any nonesense out of him. She chased him off and anytime he tried to come near, she would lay her ears back and bare her teeth. Poor Colors just stood there after a while and looked wistfully at them like "please please please just let me be your friend!"

Lady came into heat the other day and finally decided that my pretty boy Colors was worth her time and is now allowing him to join her and Abria. I think Colors feels pretty studly and they spent a lot of time together now.

Since they seemed to be getting along better, the lady that owns the barn decided to put the mares and Colors into the other field with a couple of the other horses. There's a little mare with one eye named Lexie, a retired old man named Wendell and another Mare named Sindell. They were all fine with Colors, but one horse who apparently is not very nice to anyone decided to corner Colors and beat the **** out of him. He's got some nice teeth marks, but the barn owner "Harmony" rescued Colors and put him back in the other field to try again later.

So that's where we stand right's been fascinating to watch their behavior and how they communicate with eachother. It's been a little painful emotionally and physically. It was hard to separate Colors from the other 2 that he was with in Dayton, they'd been together for 15 years and the little girl that lives there now was SO upset that I was taking Colors. And well, the physical part, he definitely stomped on my foot.

3 blessings:
That my rose bushes exploded into a riot of color this week

That he's settling in

That it's not broken

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

fields gardens and beaches

summer sun and grubby knees
send me straight back to my childhood
there's a certain peace to be found
sitting in the dirt
with grass tickling your legs
and the smell of healthy salty sweat
mingling with the fresh sweet breeze
makes me remember being small
and thinking that life didn't get better than
that minute right there
it got better each year
but it gets perfect sitting in the dirt
in the summer sun
with grubby knees.

Monday, May 25, 2009

perfect weekend...

off work a few minutes early friday
home to dayton to a delicious steak dinner grilled by my parents
i got to see my parents and sister
moving my HORSE TO COLUMBUS went SO much better than expected
P helped and supported me through the whole move
Lake Hope in Southeast Ohio to swim and relax by the lake
Ice Cream for Dinner
The horse settling in despite getting the $#%# beat out of him by a horse named Griffin.
Grilling bratwurst early in the evening
Godiva Cheesecake and 2 glasses of red wine by Buckeye Lake at sunset.

with...the best husband ever.

3 questions

what was perfect about your weekend
who did you spend it with
what are you remembering this memorial day?

Friday, May 15, 2009


Wishing Snickollet much luck and many blessings in her journey.

I love fate.

It is proof that life works in very mysterious ways. Who would think that by posting a random comment on a blog...I could help someone's life? I am honored.


being able to return the favor for someone who helped me more than she knows.
that anonymous strangers can touch eachothers lives
for all my blog friends that i've made.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

My husband found out my dirty little secret....

I tried to keep it from him...I really did. I mean, who wants to bare every dirty little secret from your past???? Not this girl. Some things are best kept hidden. But, as fate would have it, I let the secret slip. And now he knows my horrible horrible truth and I will have to deal with it as best I can.

Since the secret's out, I might as well tell you all how my marriage changed forever in the blink of an eye because of my careless, careless tongue.

There we were lying in bed late at night watching t.v. **** and a commercial came on. In my sleepy state, I wasn't watching what I was saying and I idly said. You know, I've never understood the cult following that the Terminator Movies have. I mean what's so great about them? Arnold's a bad guy and he's sent to kill some kid right?

P just kind of looked at me like I was a complete stranger to him. Then....he asked the question I've been avoiding for the 6 years that I've known him. "You haven't ever seen any of the Terminator movies have you....?"

I couldn't lie! That would be wrong!

He was shocked. Apparently, I have been walking around Life missing some vital component of American Culture. I never felt as if I was missing anything, but according to him and all of the male gender (he says) I have. Now that my dirty little secret's out, I fear that I'm going to have to pay the consequences. He says that our next 3? (are there really three???) date nights are going to be renting Terminator 1, 2 and 3. *sigh*

Dear GOD people do you know what this means????


My future looks bleak.

God help me if he finds out that I haven't seen all the Rocky movies, That movie where Tom Cruise drives a race car and Nightmare on Elm Street.

So readers ;-) now that you know my dirty little secret, why don't you share yours? What CLASSICS have you been avoiding for the past 10,20 or 50 years?

gracious friends who tell me fun things and take me to spontaneous lunches when I was feeling "blah"
teeny bopper music- you should check out "dirty little secret" by the all-american rejects
how cute my husband looks when he gets his hair cut.

**** (don't judge me, we have a t.v. in the bedroom. I like watching the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air and M*A*S*H) before bed)

Monday, May 4, 2009

backyard updates

Well, we spent the whole weekend power washing the house which was oh-so-very-much-fun. I'm tired and my thumb hurts from holding the trigger! Thus, I shall just put up some simple picture posts....If you would like to refresh in your mind what the backyard looked like before... please visit HERE. I'd say we're ALMOST at the halfway point in this new post...So much More to do. *SIGH*

3 Blessings:
The smell of marigolds and tomato plants instantly takes me back to being about 4 years old.
My amazing husband who goes up onto the roof to power wash parts of the house that no one would even notice.
That so far the swine flu in the US seems to be...not so scary.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

sometimes sunday is the best day of the week

This weekend was absolutely gorgeous. P's mom came down and though she may not be my favorite person in the world, this weekend was still fun. I think I ate more this weekend than in the last week. Let's run through the culinary experience real quick.
Friday night we stopped by an art exhibit in Bexley where the daughter of a friend of P's family was having an exhibit. She is an AMAZING artist. She's P's age, 28 , and is infinitely better at art than I will ever be at anything. One of her drawings brought tears to my eyes because it reminded me so much of one of my own experiences. She has been selected to exhibit her art at the National Portrait Gallery in London for a full year...The drawing I liked sold for 1760. I am envious of those with talent. *sigh* While at the exhibit I was peer pressured by the wine porter to drink 2 free glasses of icy cold pinot grigio. Yum.

We took the MIL to Schmidt's Sausage Haus down in German Village after the exhibit.
This is an historic site in Columbus and German Village is exceptionally beautiful. It has cobblestone roads and ancient houses that sell for, and I kid you not, 799,000 dollars. We waited for probably 45 minutes to get a seat and when we finally did it was RIGHT next to the German band.

It was loud but SO funny. I will admit that the hilarity of it may have been influenced by this.
Don't judge me. My mother in law was staying with us for the whole weekend!!!
Saturday we slept in as much as we were able with the gorgeous sun shining into the bedroom. We got up and waited for MIL to finish getting ready and then took her to a diner in PickTown for brunch. I had what was probably the largest omelette known to mankind. It was "healthy" though! It had tons of veggies in it! Post gargantuan breakfast we drove out to Nurk so P could work his baseball game. I helped the student worker keep score while P entertained his mom a little bit and then I watched the game and got gloriously tan/burned. It was loooovely. They lost, but sometimes sitting outside watching people have fun is the most fun ever.

After the loss, we drove MIL around Buckeye Lake and showed her some of the gorgeous but uber expensive homes that P wants to one day live in and then went to Papa Boos for dinner and relaxation by the water.

While there we saw



I get excited by the little giant CARP!

After dinner we went to another historic site called Weldon's for ice cream.

P's mom left this morning and I spent the entire day outside. I got the rest of the flowers and veggies that I'm able to plant right now, came home and planted them. Then, I scrubbed down the back deck and put back our patio furniture. I shall post some pictures of the "halfway point" of our backyard construction later this week.
I have to was The.Best.Day.Ever. I absolutely LOVE the sunshine and warmth. I feel like I have been fully dosed with Vitamin D and happiness :-)

3 blessings:
sunny days

Monday, April 20, 2009

What I'd Like To Say....

In which Ann Ominous writes about her inner monologue.

I'd like to say, that unless you call me, I'm not going to call you.
I'd like to say, that when I leave a voicemail, I'm not going to call again until you call me back.
When you do call...if you only tell me about all the bad things in your life, be prepared for me to tell you that your life is what you make it.
If you visit's polite to act like you want to be here.
I'd like to say that if you feel obligated to invite me to go with you and your other should feel obligated to act like you're interested in me being there.
I'd like to say that you shouldn't feel obligated.

I'd like to say that I found your friend incredibly shallow and incredibly mean.
I understand that people think that those who don't care what other people think are funny.
But I'd like to say that people should care what other people think. It's called being kind.
Making fun of someone who had a stroke isn't kind. It isn't funny.

That's what I'd like to say. What I'd really really like to say.

What I will say....

I'll keep calling you because I care about how you're doing out there.
I'll leave you a voicemail and I'll probably call back because I value our friendship.
When you call me and tell me that your life's not going well, I won't say anything...I'll try to listen, try to help, because I know you need me to.
I'll say that you can visit me and still see your other friends, because I know you care about them and that they see you less often than I do.
If you invite me out with your other friends, I might still go...but I will tell you in the future that it's okay, I don't mind staying home with my husband. I like it here.
You really shouldn't feel obligated.

I won't provoke your friend, I won't tell you I don't like him....but I don't think he's funny and when he crosses the line, I will tell him.

I will not let people make fun of stroke survivors. My father is one. I love him and count my blessings every day that I didn't lose him 10 years ago.

I will continue to say that people should care what others think;that it is important to be kind. I will always care what you think and about how you feel. You are my friend. That is what friends do.

I'm aware that like most things, friendship is a two way street, and that there are things you probably don't say to me. Friendship isn't perfect, I don't expect it to be.

3 blessings:
my husband stands beside me when he knows i'm uncomfortable
my dad, a 10 year stroke survivor
my friends


THIS makes me SO angry. If someone did inject those horses with something that killed them...that's just unbelievably cruel. Why?

One of my favorite authors said this once about his writing

I hope to make people realize how totally helpless animals are, how dependent on us, trusting as a child must that we will be kind and take care of their needs. ~Alf Wight aka James Herriot

Clearly...not everyone has read his books.

*outraged* and hoping that no one actually did this.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

compassion and karma

I have been thinking alot lately about people in general. It seems that there are so many people who are dissatisfied with their lives, their looks, their everything. This dissatisfcation is everywhere, it has seeped into my friends lives, into the students I see...everywhere. I'm not talking about the people who are heartbreakingly depressed or anything. I just mean the regular people who just...aren't happy. Sure, everyone's got drama in their lives, but some people 'bounce' with it better than others. Others seem to just inwardly collapse into a steaming pile of disgruntlement. I won't lie, I've been's a craptastic place to be.

The thing is though, we can do something about it. We can count the ways that we are beautiful, the ways our lives are blessed. Rather than remembering every single thing that's bad, start remembering the good. Rather than obsessing about why our lives aren't going the way they're supposed to, we can be thankful that we have a life to live the best we can. It's making a concious decision to be happy. That's the only thing that will clean up that steaming pile of disgruntlement that you may have fallen into. Drinks won't fix it, church won't fix it,your friends can't fix it, the gym won't fix it. Unless you change your internal behavior , the way you're going to be stuck. Don't get me wrong, those things can help...especially friends and church, but you can listen to your friends and the Bible all day and if it doesn't sink in, if you don't change, you'll walk out the doors the same person.

I think one of the most important things is to learn kindness and compassion. When your life is low...start trying to be kind to others, find ways to show compassion for people and you'll find that you are lifted up. Find ways to be kind to yourself and show some compassion for yourself and what you're feeling and you feel better. One of the bloggers I stalk just had a quote posted that I love. This is the full text of it :

For Attractive lips, speak words of kindness, For lovely eyes, seek out the good in people, For a slim figure, share your food with the hungry, For Beautiful hair, let a child run their fingers through it once a day, For poise, walk with the knowledge that you never walk alone. People, more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed, and redeemed. Remember, if you ever need a helping hand, you will find one at the end of each of your arms. As you grow older, you will discover that you have two hands, one for helping yourself and the other for helping others." — audrey hepburn

I did not used to be so happy with my life. I changed. Learning to be kind, learning to show compassion for others, learning to stop obsessing over what I thought my life should look like helped. Learning to look at what my life was really like and what it could have been like really helped. Learning that Life doesn't just happen to you, that you can be an active participant in its course really helped. I love my life now. At nearly 31, I have found that I finally feel like I am where I'm supposed to be and it is not where I thought I would be when I was 21. But, I belong here, with my friends, my husband, my family.

So rather than posting 3 blessings today, i'm going to post 3 challenges for you...

1. take 5 minutes to day to look around at all of the simple things in your life that you may usually take for granted.
2. find a way to be kind to someone else today
3. make a concious decision not to worry about something that's on your mind for at least an hour. stick to it, and practice thinking of something else.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

rain rain go away

Hello there! I hope you all had great weekends and spent some time with family and friends. We had a very nontraditional Easter Weekend at the Ominous Household. Friday night, P and I rented The Day The Earth Stood Still. It was interesting. Note, that I did not say "GOOD." It was an interesting concept, that our planet is vital and that it doesnt belong to us and that we're 'killing it'. A little farfetched in that the aliens come to eradicate humans in order to save the planet...but, who knows, maybe it isnt so far fetched after all. It would have been a better movie if it hadn't been so flat through the whole thing. You kind of wait and wait and wait for a surprising moment or that moment when the music gets real loud and things start happening fast. Yeah...that never happened. Even the ending was just like " it over?" Despite being kind of boring, P and I had a really good time watching the movie and eating good food that I cooked. It was very relaxing to just lay there and cuddle and watch a movie. We don't do that often. Saturday we got up and went out to Nurk (Newark) so P could do his athletic directoring at the softball game and then we drove straight to Dayton for Easter. It was a very nontraditional Easter weekend like I said. My parents were in Chicago celebrating their 35th wedding anniversary with some friends of theirs and P's dad and step mom were in St.Thomas for spring break. We were kind of left w/o family other than Ps mom and so since my little sister was also 'orphaned' we decided to spend Saturday with her. We met up in Dayton and we took her to our favorite ribs restaurant and then went to the Dayton Dragons home opener. It was different, but fun and it was so good to spend time with the Pig. She's hilarious and it's really runny when P gives her a hard time. He treats her like his own little sister and picks at her and teases her. She gets so frustrated because she can't retaliate :-) I laughed a lot.
Sunday P and I drove back, went to the gym and worked in the gardens. Some of my plants aren't looking so hot...i'm hoping the garden center was right when they said I could plant perennials now.... We'll see.

We took an extra day off yesterday and despite the rain hiked a 5 mile trail around a lake in one of the state parks near our house. It was SO MUCH FUN. It was rainy, but not really cold since we were moving and the view was pretty and the trail was just perfect...not too hard and not too easy. We ate lunch, went to the grocery and relaxed all evening. It was fantastic, add that to hanging out by the fire pit for hours Sunday night and our 'nontraditional Easter' and it was probably the best weekend that I've had in a long time.

I am a little sad that we didn't get to go to Church...but, neither my sister and I feel any ties to the Church my parents attend unless the parents are there. It turns into more of an awkward situation than a chance to worship because the pastor's a little odd and lots of the people know us, but we don't know them. So....we opted not to go but, it was good that despite not going, there are still things that remind you of the reason for the holiday. Christ is in us in our family and our friends and it was really a great weekend to remind me of how very much my life has been blessed.

3 blessings:

my sister is turning into a very poised and outstanding young lady.
my parents who, though it hasn't always been easy, are outstanding role models for what a marriage should be
taking the time to connect w/my husband and really talk about life while hiking and sitting around a campfire.

Friday, April 10, 2009

april showers bring....april flowers?

Last night, P and I took advantage of the gorgeous evening and worked in the yard. It's a good thing that we did since today is another miserably rainy, gloomy day in Ohio. I would say that overall it was a fantastic evening. P had another go with the hippie mower. He mowed the front yard, picked up dog droppings (yeuck..that's a boy job) in the back yard and then mowed. If he got the weed wacker out to do some trimming, our yard would look pretty nice...crabgrass and all.
While he mowed, I planted some perennials in our new flower beds out back. I think it's still a little early to be doing any planting, but, the lady at the garden center (a different garden center than the one that told me to buy the hardwood mulch that would later sprout fungus) assured me that they would be okay as long as I paid attention to frost. I also realized that I didn't buy enough of one plant and had to run to the Home Depot to get a couple more. One of my mother-in-laws says that one should always buy ones plants at a garden center or nursery because they are better quality. But here's the thing, Home Depot is like 5 minutes from my house, the nursery is like 30 minutes away. Home Depot sold me 6 plants for $35, the nursery sold me 4 for $40. I'm thinking that I like Home Depot. Just how superior can a nursery plant be anyway? It's a plant! We'll see.
So, here are the cutie pies that are growing in my yard right now...these aren't my pics, I just stole them off the internet because it was too dark to take pics by the time I finished planting last night. Not so much an exciting post today...but, it was just a nice relaxing evening, I wish you all the same thing today!

I'm beginning to think that our yard has more crabgrass than real grass... If you squint it's kind of pretty? Right?

Raspberry Swirl Dianthus (pinks)

Firewitch Dianthus

Tickseed! Yeah...I kind of bought these because I like the name. It makese me laugh.

3 things:
After 6 years of dating and being married, my husband still tells me I'm "cute"
For random sunny days in April
I get to see my sister this weekend :-)

Monday, April 6, 2009

The Curse

It's ironic that on Friday I was discussing with my sister the subject of our family curse. What? Cursed you say?? Yes. Cursed. **disclaimer** what you are about to read is an account of true incidents, but actual curse may be overdramatized for theatrical effect.

You see, my family has a long history of having random weird things happen to them that are just pure and simple bad luck. We have come to determine that it's really Karma's way of protecting the rest of the world population. You see, if it happens to us, it wont happen to you. We serve as the guardians of all other people's luck, because the bad luck bestows itself on us.

Case in Point: This weekend.

You all know that my husband and I dug out and rebuilt a flower bed last fall and after careful consultation with the garden center, we decided to use a particular brand of hardwood mulch that is designed to cut down on weed growth. Well, it's looked beautiful for the last few months and then all of a sudden on Friday, husband noticed these funny brown puffball looking fungi. Not just in a couple spots. All. Over. The. Mulch. We thought, Hmm...that's weird. I wonder what those are...and other random things. We went to the garden center on Saturday and bought some plants and went to put them in the flower garden and that's when I noticed it....the front of our house has all these little itty bitty black dots all over it. They look like this . Just like that little period...exactly that size though some are a little larger. WTF?!?!?!?!?!?!? SO, I head inside and check my trusty google website and find that more than likely the fungus is the culprit. WHAT??? SERIOUSLY??? The fungus is shooting polka dots at my siding.

You may read more about said fungus here: I have not tried the Mr.Clean Magic Eraser yet, the soft scrub with bleach and scrubby sponge worked fairly well. We scooped up the areas of the mulch that contained fungus and threw it away. I am really disinclined to replace all the mulch as it is such a waste of $$. We shall see how the next few weeks progress with the fungus attacking our siding.

Sunday the curse continued in full and angry force. P and I slept in Sunday and got up and read the paper, ate cereal and drank coffee. It started off to be a great day. We went and bought some crabgrass preventer because the people who formerly lived in our house apparently never touched the yard and it's going to be a years long project to rid ourselves of all the crabgrass. We planted the new plants and then I went and showered and got ready to go do a floor set at Bath and Body works. I came outside to eat my lunch and talk to P who was still pottering about in the garden. He went around the side of the house and got the hose out and watered the new plants. Then he went back around the side of the house to untangle the hose. I saw him kind of.....shake the hose to try to work out a kink. And then I heard him yell "OH SHIT"....and then there was this funny noise...and some silence from him. Then he yells a few more expletives that I wont print and I ran over to see what had happened. The faucet, my friends, was pulled about 4 inches out of the side of the house and water was GUSHING, FLOODING, POURING down the inside of the wall straight into the basement. You know, the basement that we just finished. Thank GOD that P knows how to turn the water off to the house because if I had been home alone while it happened, it's quite possible that I would be treading water in my kitchen at this point.

It turns out that whoever "fixed" the pipes before we moved in, thought that it would be okay to just "make it fit". Long story short, you should never try to stretch a 90 degree angled pvc pipe to fit a slightly larger than 90 degree angle bend. Years of stress on said stretched angle and my husband's shaking the hose cracked the stressed angle right in two.

So, the family curse continues despite changing my name when I got married. It's too smart for us, it must have access to my social security number or something because it definitely is still present in my life.

The curse touches us in a multitude of ways, horses getting loose, mom falling into a 5 foot hole while walking through a field, my sister falling up the stairs in front of the entire Greek community of her college, dad burning a hole in the counter and backing the car into the garage door of the house they JUST BOUGHT that's those random little "Slim to None chance" things that happen to us so that the rest of you can live awkward free and lucky lives.

I accept flowers, candy and credit cards as thank you gifts.

3 things:

That my husband knew how to turn the water off
That we own a wet/dry vac
That the rescue plumber was really nice and in a really good mood because his alma mater is in the championship game. I might have to be a UNC fan today.

Friday, April 3, 2009


It's going to snow again. I am so very very over gross weather. I am tired of being inside. I want out. I am hoping that tomorrow will be nice enough that we can go outside after P comes back from golfing with his buddy from work. P did spend part of tonight and yesterday mowing the grass for the first time with our new hippie lawn mower. It's pretty doesn't cut quite as cleanly as the old gas powered one, but it's nice to know we're not killing the environment, relying on foreign oil and saving room in our garage at the same time ;-) I'll let you guess which one of those three things I'm most excited about.

I worked today til 3 and then took off early to drive to Dayton to meet with my horse's vet and update his vaccines and draw blood for the Coggins test. The people who bought my parents house are nice....but it's true what they say, you can't ever go home again because it won't be the same. The yard's a mess and they have unfinished projects all over the barn yard. They are first time horse owners and I'm trying very tactfully to show them how to do some make sure the halter's not on so tight that it's rubbing the poor thing's face. They need to get their daughter in some riding lessons this summer and she'll learn how to do things properly...but geez. It hurts my heart to see the things that I used to take care of so well be so...haphazard.

Next step with the horse is to see if the old family friend will still help me move him up here....and then, the heartbreaking process of separating Colors from his little friends until he gets used to the new horses at the new stable. I will probably cry. It's going to be awful. Somebody tell me that I'm anthropomorphosizing (totallys pelled that wrong) human feelings into the horse and that he'll miss his friends but it's not going to break his heart???

***subject change before i cry***

Today at work was fun, we did a presentation for a large group and it was fun to see everyone's personalities come out in the way they present their pieces. We work well together and complement eachother well, I think. The rest of the day I chit chatted with my boss and told her that I'd like an additional assignment if she has any floating around...most of the other people in the office have something "else" that they do besides advise, so they have more to work on than just their allocated students. My 'appointment' doesn't come with any other projects, so I would like to either create one or be given one now that I feel like I know what the heck I'm doing. I may pick up more presentations this summer since I really do love public speaking. I may also help revamp survey class, though, I'm not sure that I'm really the most qualified to do this as I think I'm a TERRIBLE teacher. We shall see. She seemed positive about giving me more to do so that's good.

I also chatted with one of the other advisors about being at that age when you realize "oh some point I'm going to be the one that has to make big decisions for my parents" and questioning my ability to "be a real grown up." Sometimes I feel like I'm just 'playing' being an adult. I know P feels the same way sometimes though he wouldn't really make a big deal out of it like I do. I over react. Totally. Over.React. I get a thought in my head and let it spiral until it's this huge worst case scenario that there's no solution for and is all doom and destruction. It was really nice to hear from the other girl that I'm not a total nutcase and that she feels the same way sometimes.

Well, this was a random post and now that it's 11:00 and I do not have to get up in the morning, I am going to go upstairs and crack the windows to let a little cold air in, snuggle under my comforter and read Sherlock Holmes. I am toasty full of the delicious dinner my amazing wonderful parents brought me when they surprised me by meeting me at the horse barn, and a cadbury's hot chocolate with the new vanilla caramel swirl marshmallows on top. My husband just kissed the top of my head and I'm not alone in my neurosis and anxiety. I got to see my horse, my parents and I love my job. I'm pretty sure that that makes for a perfect day :-)

3 things:

Getting my horse to columbus is getting nearer and nearer
Classic Literature that makes me read slowly and absorb what I'm reading
I really do have the best parents in the entire world


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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