Friday, December 19, 2008

Yatta! ("I did it!" in Japanese)

This past week was the week for some serious arms up in the air and screaming, "Yatta!"

I will list my top three:

Finished first semester of school, didn't do too bad on my finals, didn't kill the kids with all the stress, with the added benefit of being so stressed out that I lost a couple pounds. I finished the semester with three A's and one B. Of course, that B is in my Anatomy and Physiology lecture, I've never worked harder for a B or been more proud.

I fixed the toilet. Again, but really fixed the problem. The handle broke again and instead of just putting on a new handle I found out what was causing the handle to break. An old gasket in the tank. Replaced gasket, new handle, and learned how to stop it from running. I used to have to lift the lid to flush the toilet and then wait around to fix the running. Now I stay purely to thrill at the sound of a completely working flush.

Survived first girl slumber party. DD turned eight last week and instead of some big party, I told her she could invite three friends to sleep over. I had this thing planned. Asked a friend to let the boys sleep over at her house so I could focus solely on the girls. They watched movies, played on the computer, video games, ate pizza, other various junk, and we made bracelets/necklaces with little picture frame charms for a picture of DD and whoever made the jewelry. And they were even quiet when I told them it was time to be quiet, I think I properly scared them with my I-am-the-crankiest-person-in-the-world speech. The next day was a little more challenging, they were all very tired including the boys. Everyone was all blood-shot eyes by the end of the day. None of them have ever stayed up that late before. They had a blast. Even if DD was having some serious entitlement issues, one more thing to work on.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Hunkered down

I am in full finals study mode. I have only four more days until I will be able to say I have survived my first semester back at school. I wasn't really feeling that much pressure, all my grades are pretty set. My English grade is right on the border of A/B, but I feel good with Hamlet so I am not that worried. I think I will be alright. I am very confident in my Algebra class that I will be fine. The final is accumulative and I have gotten A's on every test. To my surprise, I was the only one in the class to get an A on the last test. The test that I took early so I could go to the presidential rally. I was feeling the normal amount of stress going into my Anatomy final, it is on the last two chapters. I have a very solid B, so I just wanted to hang onto that. I emailed my professor to double-check that my grade was what I thought it was. I had figured an A was mathematically impossible but apparently he does some last minute curving. He told me that if I do very well on the final an A is not out of the question. So pressure back on.

As Sunday is a absolute no-study day, I can just veg out and post today. Especially since we didn't make it to church. A special thanks to Bug, throwing up at the Ward Christmas party last night. I can't tell you how good he is at telling me that he is feeling sick and that he needs to get to the toilet. He hasn't thrown up on the floor in years, leave it to now so we can be in public for that to fall through. He's not really sick, but that's a whole other story.

Here's the point just some lists of updates I wanted to share:

I did not get my flat screen TV, I wasn't impressed by the black Friday sales. The cheapest I saw was $100 off the cheapest I've been able to find on a normal day. That is not enough a savings for me to deal with crazy. I will wait it out a little bit more.

Way back on Veteran's Day, there was a program for Punx year group at school...

I just thought this was so funny. Do you see the arrow pointing to where you can see that tiny patch of Punx's head? He is standing on the highest tier there and the girls in front of him are a step lower and still that much taller than him. I just wanted a picture. We got there all early so we could sit in the front row so I could get some good pictures and maybe a video. And then this is all I could see. Then my battery died right after I took this picture. They sang very well though, it was a nice little program.

Then right before Thanksgiving I took the boys to go to the Presidential rally. DD had a field trip at school so I let her choose which she would rather do. She informed me that she had studied all about the President at school so she pretty much knew what he was going to say. It was a lot easier, I must say, with only two of them rather than all three. Especially since we stood there for about two hours before he came and then it took another two hours after before we could get back to out car. All for a twenty minute speech.

That morning as I was helping the boys get ready, I was explaining that they should dress nice. Not church nice, but let's not wear jeans. Note to self: it is so alright to wear jeans and comfortable shoes. I wore heels and was sore for two days. I was picking a nice outfit for Bug and just threw some random underwear at him, probably SpongeBob, and he picks them up and hands them back to me and says, "Mom, these are not nice underwear."

While we waited for the President. A very nice woman stood with us the whole time and even gave the boys a snack. They had sent out an email that we could bring food so I didn't but then they didn't even care. They had food there but I wasn't going to give up our spot to try and find our way to the snack tent at the back of the crowds.

As good a picture as I could get with the camera zoomed in and held over my head. As the President came in, a couple awesome soldiers reached back and picked up the boys to hold them up high so they could see him walk in. They pick them up one more time later on so they could look again. It was really nice, I can't pick up Punx like that anymore.

When it was over, we didn't even try to get to the buses I thought we could just sit down on the bleachers and wait while all the hordes moo'ed their way along. All those people just stood there forever. A friend and her family found us and we all waited out on the side together while the kids ran around.

One thing all the crowds missed by trying to get out of there so fast was watching Air Force One take off. We were right there. I think the boys liked that. Then when the crowds finally started moving we thought we should get in line. Then all the soldiers started yelling, civilians, make a hole. Next thing we knew they all got out of the way and kept telling us to move up front. All civilians to the front. We kept getting pushed to the front until we were at the front of the line. We felt bad about that so we moved to the side. Then the buses came, it turned out everyone had been waiting until Air Force One had taken off, no one had left that whole time we had just been sitting around waiting for everyone to leave. Then everyone got all crazy to get on the buses so my friend's family and us, we moved to the side again. Next thing we knew another bus pulls up and stops right in front of us. So we just got in. It was hard not to laugh at all the impatient people pushing and trying so hard to get on that first bus when we just stood back and watched then one came to us. My friend's husband said, this is what an evacuation would be like, except that no one here is scared. That was a scary thought.

I really liked taking the boys to go see the President. Politics aside, I thought it was a cool experience for them. DD, of course, cried about it when she got home and thought the boys had more fun then she did. Not much of a surprise.

That's about it. Classes are over, so I do have a lot of free time to freak out and study. It turns out I am not that great at studying for prolonged periods of time at home. I think though that being on this side of the weekend and seeing finals so close will help me focus. Not so much tomorrow, though, mom day with a friend, I am going to see Twilight again.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

I'm off!

Lovely school break looming before me, I am taking off to my sister's house for some turkey and hunting. I am hunting a flat screen TV this Friday. Our TV is the first TV we ever bought in our marriage and I am ready for an upgrade.

I will be back on Saturday or so and then I will post pictures of the Presidential visit to Fort Campbell yesterday that I took the boys to.

Happy Thanksgiving.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Uhhh, thanks?

Yesterday, I took a break from studying to actually do something. As I crashed and burned on my test this afternoon it probably wasn't the best idea. Anyway, I decided to go to enrichment. I have only gone like three times the year and a half we have lived here. It is the same time as swim team practice so I never make it. Yesterday, was the last day of swimming before we take a break. Less is more. So I pulled the kids out of swimming until Jan.

So, I get to the church and one of the first things someone says to me is..."You look exhausted."

I am pretty sure the phrase "worn-out" was in there also. I replied that, "Yes, I am but I am so glad that you can tell." Well, now. I have mirrors, I know that the bags under my eyes now resemble duffel bags rather than hand bags but ouch.

Here's to the future:

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Life or Pancakes

From the movie "Stranger Than Fiction"

Harold Crick - "I want to live! I mean who in their right mind in a choice between pancakes and living, chooses pancakes?"
Professor Hilbert - "Harold, if you pause to think I believe you'd realize that that answer is inextricably contingent upon the type of life being lead and, of course, the quality of the pancakes."

On an aside, I really like this movie, some of my favorite quotes are from this little know Will Ferrell movie. It is not a normal sense of the word comedy but it is very funny. Smart funny.

To the point, I love that line. I'm not trying to sound pathetic, but I hope when I look back at my life it would appear to be better than high quality pancakes. I'm just saying.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Lather, rinse, repeat. As needed.

I know everyone knows the rut feeling. I have been feeling it something fierce ever since Dan left and just stepped back into the grind like nothing had happened.

Turn-off alarm. Do a little reading. Get breakfast for the kids. Get in the shower. Backpacks ready, clean-up breakfast. "Does everyone have a sweatshirt?" Repeat question four times. Get my backpack ready. Grab whatever bottle is counting as my breakfast and throw it in. Watch for the bus, get out the door, go, go, go. Oh yeah, I love you, have a good day. Drive to school, talk to Dan on phone. Find parking spot, walk to class. Cram whatever study time I have in. Class, study, class, study. Drive home. Clean something. Eat maybe. Study, homework. Kids, their homework. Clean something. Stop fighting. What day is it? Swimming, scouts, what's going on tonight? Dinner, baths, jamas. Stop fighting. Go to bed, now, I love you. Study, homework, watch some TV. Talk to Dan. Read a little, set alarm, turn off light.

Repeat, repeat, repeat, infinity...

I feel nothing but stress, frustration, anger, and occasionally nothing at all. I am just coming off a wonderful girl's weekend. My sister and I and a couple of friends did a church conference thing, Time Out for Women. It was here in Nashville this past weekend. A single friend stayed at the house and watched the kids. We all got a hotel room, went to the conference, ate actual food, had a good time. Now here I am two days later, one day away from my first final and I am ready to explode.

I am very dispirited. I don't know how else to describe it except that I feel like I am failing. Not grade wise, potential wise. I am not doing my best work, the house is not clean, I feel like I am constantly pushing the kids away because I either need to study or please just let me have a minute to myself. In trying to get everything done, I feel like nothing is getting accomplished. I just don't know what to do with this feeling that I can't do this. The thought of settling for B's in some of my classes that I should have A's in makes me sick. And, yes, I know how stupid this all sounds. Now you know, I am truly that uptight.

So I have conceded. I am unwilling to live like this and unwilling to have my kids live this way anymore. As much as it feels like a kick in the gut, next semester I am taking the A&P II class with it's lab and nothing else. This class, this semester, has taken me at least 15 hours a week. I am just going to focus on that and maybe next fall I can re-evaluate, again.

But now, it is official, I will not be graduating here. It will be impossible. I choose sanity over a defined graduation date. It just really sucks. I have no idea where we are going next, if there will be a university there, if they will even have a program. It's going to be a great picture me in my gown next to Punx in his in 2024. That's figuring that Punx graduates on time for high school, serves a two year mission and takes five years to get through college.

Saturday, November 08, 2008

The thrill is gone

Enough already. [cough cough] I am so over the charm of laying in bed and watching TV, as I sneeze and reach for the tissues. At least I was able to venture out today, I was out of medicine.

Sixty-five bucks later, cough drops in bulk, chest cough meds, and a humidifier with some fancy vicks stuff you put in the water.

It's time to get out of bed. I'm thinking the couch, the one with the DVR in front of it, I remember why I hate commercials now. [cough cough] Was that pathetic enough for you guys?

The bright side, the kids don't have school on Monday, so I am not going to my classes even though my morning class was canceled so I am only ditching one class. Then Tuesday is when Austin Peay is doing Veteran's Day so I don't have classes on that day so I can be all kinds of pathetic until Wednesday with no fears.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Tons o' Tidbits

I am having a wonderful sick day. I haven't left my bed except to do necessary things like get chocolate, water, the computer, tissues, and more cough drops. I have never not minded being sick before. I feel like crap but yet I am enjoying myself. I have just laid here and watched TV, actual TV with commercials and everything. I even watched some music videos this morning, that was awesome. It has been too long since I took a lazy day. I wanted to take advantage of the lazy day to spew out all the stuff in my head that I didn't get out during R&R or have been otherwise forgetting.

Grades: I have hit a pretty good grove with my classes and have nailed a few more tests. The day that Dan came home was my second A&P test so I had to take it early, got the results after we got back from our weekend trip: 97%! I still got a sticker but my "good" went to "excellent" and I got #3 in the class. We just had our third test which I didn't study too well for since Dan was home for the whole section: 88%, back to a "good," but still third. Another Algebra test: 94%. In my A&P lab I got a 97% on the midterm and the top grade in the class. Second English test tomorrow on Dante, don't feel so prepared. So eventually my lazy day must end for some studying. Oh, poo.

Halloween: We did Star Wars this year. I was so happy that Dan was able to be here for the ward party at least.

I think I nailed the buns, that took some configuring. A natural bun of my thin hair is about the size of my ear, I made those from yarn. I took it easy this year, not much sewing. Dan's costume is thrift store with a little altering, mine is a Roman costume from years past with some altering, and the kids are purchased or borrowed.

There they are: Queen Amidala, Obi-wan, and Darth Vader. I couldn't find a picture where Bug is wearing his Darth Vader mask.

I already informed the children what we are doing next year. They have no choice in the matter, we are finally going to do what I have dreamed of doing for years. These will require five from scratch costumes so I have to get started real early, that's why I figured I'd let the kids know now that I took their free will away. I'm so excited, my dream Halloween.

Another swim meet: This time it was at our Y, so much easier. I don't know what places the kids got in there final events but they each won a few of their heats, they were very excited about that. The big one about this one was that they each got to do some relays for the first time and Punx did a 100 IM for the first time, one length of each stroke, it was amazing. He was so tired by the end, it was his hardest event and his last event. I was so proud. We have a couple more weeks of this session left and then we are taking the next session off. Just a little break, more free time during the winter and especially finals for me.

And lastly My kids on:

My kids on Finances:
Bug: If I had hundreds million dollars I'd put my hands in the air and say, "Victory is Mine!" Then take dollars and throw them in the air.

My kids on the eventuality of Death:
Bug and DD: Driving to Bowling Green, KY we drive through a small town called Russleville and it's graveyard every time.
Bug, "Mom, a dead yard"
DD, "Is that where you bury the people that you love?"
Me, "And where do you put the people that you don't love, in the garbage?"
DD, "That's all the people? How can that fit all the people who have ever lived?"
Me, "All the people that ever lived are not buried in Russleville, KY."
DD, "Oh, just all the people of KY and TN, then."

My kids on compliments:
DD, "Mom, you're nice and funny."
Me, "You forgot something."
DD, "Oh yeah, nice, funny, and beautiful."
And the same time Punx said, "Aggressive."

My kids on the election:
DD, "Mom, who are you going to vote for? At school there is a box at the cafeteria where we can vote."
Punx, "What are you talking about? That's for your favorite food, I voted for hamburger."
DD, "Oh, I saw someone vote for Obama."

The vote counters, that's one vote for pizza, one for Obama, one for hamburger, and one for Ralph Nader? Who put that in here?

That about all my diseased brain can remember for the moment.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Super Cheesy/Gushy Confession

I am not one for emotional outbursts. Wait, let me rephrase that so it's true. I am not one for outbursts of positive emotions. Spontaneous hugs, Golly gee your swell kinda stuff. Nothing makes me want to kick my own butt more than when I cry in public. I'm not all that comfortable when other people do it either.

But the truth really is...there is a soft sort squishy person deep inside there that I keep chained up and buried beneath sarcasm, wit, and (hopefully) a good dose of dark humor.

This election has made my squishy come out.

I know that I will take this back, maybe even by the time the results come out but I am so happy today. I have always been too interested in politics, I remember when I went crying to my father to tattle on my mother for having a Dukakis pin on her purse. I was mortified, what was she thinking? She couldn't possibly be thinking about voting for him. It was 1988, and I was ten, it's a little bit of a head scratcher why I am like this.

I love this country. I mean Apple Pie, Fourth of July, Big Band, Fireworks, bring on the Lee Greenwood love this country. Every Fourth I take the kids to the show on post and we sit real close to the band and I cry. I am so embarrassed. I try to hide it every year and am always so grateful when it finally gets dark.

Here's the point. Voter turn out has always been one of those things that gets my blood boiling. This great right we have and so many people not exercising it. So much blood split for it and people don't care. I missed the registration deadline after I turned eighteen by one day, I didn't know about deadlines then. On the day of the election I went with my boyfriend to the polls and watched him vote for Bob Dole as I hide my tears. I've never missed a deadline since, even with all the moves.

I am so proud of everyone this year. Bursting. Millions of new registrations, millions of first time voters. It is anticipated anywhere from 20-40 million more people will vote in this election than the last presidential election. That is so huge!

With all the division in the country, all this break-down among party lines, today I just don't care. Today everyone gets their voice. Americans are taking their voices back. This is why I am so happy, so pleased, so squishy.

Today I honestly don't care who wins. Because with so many people finally voting it makes me feel like we will be getting a President that America has chosen, even if it isn't the one that I voted for. How can I be upset at that? Now I make no promises on how I'll feel in a few months when the new administration does whatever it is they are going to do that I don't like.

Right now, inside I am all roasted warm marshmellow. I voted today, I hope you did, too. The will of the people will be done today. For the People, by the People.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

I have no words for this

I took Dan to the airport today. I can't tell you how wrong it feels. There is this "back to normal" feeling. I shouldn't feel like things are going back to normal now that Dan is heading back to Afghanistan. I drove straight from the airport to my afternoon A&P class, then home. Right when I got home it was right to chores, dishes, laundry, etc. It felt all like normal. I'm not sure what's going on. Just knowing that Dan will be coming home soon, knowing that I know what to expect now, knowing that I can do this. Dan should be home in about three months. They have cut off two months from the deployment.

Let's get to the fun stuff. R&R was beyond wonderful. Dan and I spent a couple of days in Nashville and in Kentucky at the Land between the Lakes. Just us two. We have only done that once before after we had kids. Man, it was great.

This is the view of Carnton Plantation in Franklin, TN. Dan and I did a tour. It was a plantation turned into a field hospital during the Battle of Franklin during the Civil War. There are still blood stains on the wood floors. There is a historical fiction out called The Widow of the South, it was very interesting. Also nice was taking a boring adult history tour of something and having no one to shush.

The view from the cabin we rented at the Land between the Lakes. Beautiful. I wish we could've stayed there for a few more days.

We came home on Sunday morning. I walked into the house and called the kids into the living room. Hey kids who wants to see what I brought home from my trip? Yeah! I opened up the front door and there stood Dan. They just yelled and ran to him. It was indescribable. This picture was taken within minutes and I think that is enough.

Having a man around the house again...

He did this to the garage in one day. One trip to Lowe's for a tool rack thingy, toy thingy, another couple shelves and the garage is so pretty. I wish I had a before picture so you could really get the full benefit. Let's just leave it at that there was a free path from the car door to the basement door.

He mowed the lawn twice, trimmed all the trees and bushes, took two trips to the dump, and a trip to the recycling place (we don't have pick-up here in Clarksville, we have to take it ourselves). And he bought me this...

We didn't quite measure the cabinet right and the fridge was too high, so Dan took care of that, too. He cut the lower lip of the cabinet so the fridge fits. I'll admit it, I have hugged my new frigde. The best part for Dan is the old fridge in the garage, the next time we went to the commissary he made sure we bought a whole mess of soda. While we would be watching TV in the basement he would just step into the garage and come back with a cheesy grin on his face and a cold soda.

I hadn't realized how many things I had let slide, couldn't do, or didn't do until I had a man in the house again.

Now lets get to the important part. What I wore to the airport.

I'm going to come clean about this picture, its a re-enactment. The picture at the airport is bad. When Dan came walking down that hallway thing and I saw him, I starting bawling. I never got fully into an ugly cry but when I cry my face gets all puffy and red. It shows up on the pictures. And the person who took the picture didn't get the full effect of the outfit. So, yes, I made Dan do a re-do. As much as I worried about this outfit I needed pictoral proof.

So now back to "life." I don't even want to think about what my inbox looks like or the google reader. Looks like I have a lot of deleting to do. I hope everyone had a good eighteen days.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

He's home!

Dan's home! Dan's home! he he he

Sunday, October 05, 2008

To sum up

I can sum up all of Saturday with this:

I ate my emergency Snickers bar.

Friday, October 03, 2008

I [heart] irony

I am beginning to love my World Lit class. I got the results back from the first half of my first test and it was an A, so yeah! The essay portion I will receive my grade on Monday.

Anyway, the first thing we read was The Odyssey, I got a kick out of reading the epic poem about a man struggling through great trials to get back to his wife after the war in Troy. I could imagine myself as Penelope staying at home with her son, waiting, waiting, waiting. Now I haven't waited for twenty years without so much as an email but I could sympathize with her, I think, a little more than the average college student.

Imagine my delight when we started Dante's Inferno today. As we begin to descend into the various levels of hell, it was all I could do to not laugh out loud.

Today we entered the first circle of hell: Limbo. Let's move on, huh? I've been living in this circle long enough.

By the time we get to the next circle, I should actually be missing class, due to picking my husband up for R&R, what circle will be be entering then? The second circle of hell: Lust. he he he.

I wonder if by the time I get back we'll have moved on to the third circle: Gluttony, which I plan to do a lot of while Dan is home, especially since I haven't eating in about five weeks.

This begs me to ask to real pertinent question? What circle of hell will we be in when Dan has to go back to Afghanistan?

"Abandon all hope ye who enter here." - Inscription over the Gate of Hell, where all the damned must go through on their way to eternal punishment, those with no hope of redemption.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Big mouth strikes again

Last week was parent teacher conference week at the childrens' school. Punx teachers sent a note saying that we did not need to meet, that was nice. DD's and Bug's meetings went a little differently.

I have been getting notes in Bug's study buddy about three times a week. "He did not do so well with his listening today." "He didn't do as he was told and lost some recess today." "Today when I told the kids to go to their desks after carpet time he stayed on the carpet and spun in circles." You get the idea. We have been discussing every bad note and celebrating every good one.

A couple days ago there was yet another bad note and I looked right at him and said, "This is not a good note." He looks right back at me with dead eyes and in monotone goes, "I don't care." Get to time out, right now. I was on the couch studying and stayed there where I could see him sitting in the corner on the stairs where I left him for a long time. After about twenty minutes I start saying, "Do you care now? Huh? Do ya?" And then left him in there awhile more. We had a long talk about him never saying that kind of stuff to me. Ever again.

Next day, good note. The day after that, not so much. I look at it, and look at him. He looks at me and before I can say anything at all, "I care."

Alright message received, but we are still getting bad notes, but at least I am not getting attitude over it anymore.

Then yesterday, Bug's primary teacher tells me a good story of what he said in front of the whole primary. I have started getting the kids ready for my weekend trip. "Mom is going away for a couple of days and Aunt Jenny is coming to stay with you guys." They don't know that I am getting Dan at the airport and we are going to the lake for the weekend. I told them that I am just taking a little break. After telling DD that she doesn't get to ask me why I get to take a break, I went on to explain that it was just for like two days and they would be with their cousins and Aunt. You'll be fine.

Bug raised his hand and told all of the primary, "Um, my Aunt Jenny is coming to our house for the weekend 'cuz Mom needs a break."

He also told his teacher about me being unhappy about my birthday, by way of the unhappy face that I had put on the calendar. I told the kids it was because Dan was gone not the numeric significance. That got me a batch of really good homemade cookies, which I totally snarfed. Now that the whole primary thinks that I am coming unhinged. Oh well, I will be too busy actually spending time with my husband. Holy crap, ten more days.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008


That was written on my A&P test. "Good." With a sticker of a flower on it. And a little note that said "tied for 8th."

I got a D.

I got 49 out of 72 points. Technically it was out of 83 points but he knocks off 11 out of the goodness of his heart. With his grading I got 68%, really I got 59%.

I stewed over the "good" and the sticker for a few days. He said nothing about grading on a curve. I wasn't holding out hope that my D was somehow miraculously a B or even an A. 8th out of 70 is pretty good, right? But never in my life has someone told me good job on a D. Or given me a sticker, although I don't think I have gotten a sticker on any of my work in about twenty years.

Finally today I asked him. Your grading scale is up front right? Percentage equals grade? Yes, that's right. Ok, you see I'm confused. I got a D, right? You wrote "good" on it. Did you get a sticker? Yes, I did. I put stickers on the ones I think still have hope. oh, alright, thanks.

Honestly, I think I'm starting to come around to him. There have been a few nursing students in the Library printing off his stuff for their upper-level classwork. They all say that they have forgotten everything and his stuff is the best. Everyone that didn't have him for A&P is now suffering. Anyone that had him and actually passed is doing fine. Maybe it really should be this hard. Maybe, gulp, it's only going to get harder, so I better get a good foundation now. From someone who forces you to actually learn the subject not just pass the test.

I think I will sign up for his class for the next level of A&P that I need next semester.

Until then, I have already printed out the study materials for the next test in two weeks. I have to take it early since the test in on the day that Dan comes home. But I am limiting myself to two hours a day, during the day. No more late nights. No more overdoses.

As in all things, I must find that balance. At least I know what is coming now. Until the next test, I have my first Algebra test tomorrow, first English test on Friday, and first A&P Lab test on Tuesday. One test at a time.

Wouldn't life be great if 68% were a good job on other things? I paid 68% of the mortgage payment this month- good job! I paid attention to the kids story about 68%- good job, although I think I would have to pay attention more to hit that percentage.

This has shaken my whole reality. Good job! For a D.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Things that make you go hmmm...

I had a crappy week. I had been studying non-stop for my first Anatomy and Physiology test. At a minimum I put in thirty hours of study. I was doing about four hours a day on a light day and that was just last week. The test was on Friday and I am almost positive that I failed it. If I knew where this professor lived he would find a flaming bag of dog poop on his doorstep. No multiple choice, no matching. All short answer, define, or sketch and draw. I went through the study materials four or five times. It was about 100 pages. It would appear that the things that did stick weren't on the test. If I don't get a good grade in this class I will have to take it again. And not just because I care about my GPA, although, I really do. Getting in the radiology department isn't a given, you must apply and be accepted. My two classes of A&P are the only health field related classes that I take. I can't imagine that a poor grade makes me look like a promising candidate.

First thing I did after I turned in that joke of a completed test was go eat. I have given up food until Dan gets home but I made an exception for Friday. And I made it a point that I wasn't going to think about that stupid test until Monday when hopefully I will get the results.

Saturday, I took the kids to a video conference with Dan. It was really nice. And weird. I literally hadn't seen my husband in about nine months. Seeing him was surreal. The kids acted like the monkeys they are but if they weren't there, I think Dan and I might have had an awkward time of it. We talk on the phone a lot and our conversation never lag, but now looking at each other through a bad pixelated screen, what do you say? It made me suddenly really nervous for R&R. Then we had a baptism for a friend and I dropped them off at Super Saturday. I had originally planned on canceling but changed my mind for some retail therapy.

I got my haircut, found the outfit for the airport. I took mostly everybody's advice, nice and casual. New jeans with a nice three button jacket. And really cute dark plaid heels with shiny black on the toe and heel. It felt really nice to buy a pair of jeans two sizes smaller and they just went right on, no squishing.

Then today, it looks like Punx might have pink eye. Second week in a row of missing church. I missed school last Monday because Bug was sick and now Punx. I got him a doctor's app for the afternoon but now I have three more days to freak over the test.

So I needed a laugh. I remember my chopstick paper that I kept from one time taking the kids to the nearby buffet always intending to share it but forgot. So here it is...

In case you can't read it: Welcome to Chinese Restaurant. please try your Nice Chinese Food With Chopsticks the Traditional and typical of chinese glorious history. And cultual

All punctuation and capitalization is as it appears on the original. That also reminds me, on my birthday we went to PF Changs and my fortune cookie didn't have a fortune. That is really bad right? Not getting a fortune on your birthday?

This got me to thinking of something I read in The Time a while back about the Chinese translating all their signs for the Olympics into English. They didn't do so well, I did a quick search. Spent a whole lot of time laughing and decided to share my favorites...

#7 is the head scratcher.

I need a laugh, that was good. All I did was google Chinese funny signs.

Friday, September 12, 2008

I need help

Yeah, yeah, go ahead and get the jokes out of your system. I really do have a problem here. It is two-fold. Dan comes home in one month. Hold on, I need to do that again.


So the first part of my problem is the freaking out about all the things that I need to do to be ready for when he gets here. The house sparkling clean, food in the house, maybe even have some freezer dinners, yard work, garage, haircut for me, haircut for the boys, write real to-do list of all the things I want to get done, etc. Everyday I live in this house and it seems fine and then I think about Dan coming home and it's a crap-hole. One disgusting mass of kids mess and filth. And the various depositories of my belongings that I haven't taken care of. This house looks exactly like what is does when Dan is home and that is now all of a sudden unacceptable to me.

The thing I am really freaking out about is what I am going to wear at the Airport to pick him up? Seriously. I am running circles in my head about what I could wear to the airport and can't figure it out.

Casual or nice
New or old

There are many pros and cons to each side. Casual would be the pinnacle of what I am, jeans, t-shirts, flip-flops is how I live my life. So Dan's first sight of me being something he is used to sounds reasonable.

Nice though has it's upside as well. I don't dress nice very often. So when I do, Dan likes that. It's a special occasion so shouldn't I dress up?

Then the old or new question. Should I wear something that is from my somewhat skinny collection that I couldn't fit when Dan left but that he would recognize. Once again touching on the whole comforting angle.

New to make me feel better and also get to shop more and celebrate my new size.

What about mixing up the categories, old outfit but nice clothes? Casual clothes but new?

Welcome to the endless circle of my thinking. I will accept all suggestions and then pretty much do what I want in the end but I still need guidance. The other part that worries me is isn't it too early for me to be putting this much thought into a decision like this that let's face it Dan won't really think about all? I'll get the "you look great" and he'll mean it. But he won't think anything about the energy or time put into the decision. He's a guy. And he's not incredibly neurotic. And I am not going to tell him either, no use giving him ammunition for the committal hearing. But I am going to face reality, my reality here. I am going to have this on my mind until I make a decision.

So go ahead and take it both ways, I need help. oh, oh, the really great side of new and nice is I'll get new shoes. I hadn't thought of that one before.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Abstract and selfish

I know that everyone must feel this way. This day is just off. Going about regular business, school, chores, swimming, feels out of whack. Staying at home watching the news feels weird. Everything about this day makes me feel like I've forgotten something.

This year more than any other.

I think of that day when I turned on the TV and saw. No one could have grasped then that it would mean that our lives had changed to pre- and post-. I didn't. Dan had just gotten out of the Guard and had contacted with the ROTC to join the Air Force after graduation later in 2002. He signed his contact on Sept. 9th when the world made more sense. Dan joined the Guard in 1999 to help pay for school and then fell in love with the military. He decided that if he was going to make it his career he should go Air Force and finish school. Dan's Guard unit was called up on Sept 13th for two years. All I could think of was how glad I was that he had gotten out and was now joining the Air Force, where he wasn't going to be asked to do anything scary. years later he is in the Army and in the war that started a month later. He has a desk job, he is not in danger, I do not worry about that. We are blessed, lucky, and grateful. But he is gone. And he is going again, all too soon. That is all I can think about. He isn't home from the first one and the second one is already looming on the calendar.

I am being selfish. Then comes the guilt. This day isn't about me but that is all I think about, my family and what this day did to my kids. Evil men on the other side of the world decided to murder innocent people because they live in America and wanted to go to work and support their families. Now my kids have to give up their father for big chunks of their childhood. I have to give up my best friend and have a 10,000 mile marriage.

We chose this life, the military life. Together. And more than that when Dan was being let go from the Air Force he had options, civilian life or Army life. We chose this, together. We knew that by going Army he would deploy. We knew that he would be gone and what he would be asked to do. We made this decision with our eyes open.

That knowledge doesn't change a thing. I am still alone at night when the kids cry. I am still selfish, and just want Dan home.

Monday, September 08, 2008

One success, one blunder

Brag, brag, brag. To celebrate hitting the 30 lbs lost mark, I went shopping. I have been on the hunt for two very elusive items. One: a dress, two: a jean skirt. The search has been going on for about a year. Background info for those that don't know of the fashion restrictions. Sleeveless is not an option, skirts need to at least go to my knees, and a few other things like backless, or too low in front. I have been on the hunt for a dress that right from the hanger I can wear. I have two dresses and they are both sleeveless so I wear shirts underneath one and a sweater with the other one. I want a dress that is self-sufficient. Needless to say, I am picky. Nothing I wear is frilly, not big on lace, or those grown-up pinafore looking things. Not going to happen.

Then just like that two dresses in one day. With one being the ultimate, a black dress. I do have to make two slight alterations and then that one will be perfect. Just a little bit of a nip on the neck line so it's not so come and get it and then the other alteration is for me to be just a slight less fatty and I am all set. That is my new goal dress, hanging in one corner of my room, taunting me. The goal is to be ready for it by the time Dan gets home. The other dress is perfect for now, right off the hanger. And two sizes smaller than my last size. Success!

On to the blunder, totally not my fault which is why I can share it so freely, although I am never that shy to share all the stupid crap I do. Every year for my birthday I get myself a present. I go a little crazy on Amazon and add on to the CD collection. But with a mission, this is back-dating that I do. Not anything that I can buy at the store, this is my old-school stuff. The stuff that I grew up on, the songs that shaped my tastes for the rest of my life. I was a child of the eighties but more importantly the youngest of six children, some of whom were teenagers then and took it upon themselves to make sure I was raised correctly.

This year it is some Pet Shop Boys, Howard Jones, and Elvis Costello. And two other obscure CDs, not old but not available at the stores, The Shins and a collection of music from Gilmore Girls. The tricky thing with buying old is that sometimes used is the only option. I normally do alright with Amazon but it is always a gamble. The Elvis Costello one was only available used so I gambled, bet on red baby. It landed on black.

The Elvis Costello comes first and I was so excited, I can already hear Veronica in my head, I am looking forward to a night of uploading to the itunes and introducing the children to Peace, love, and understanding. I open the CD case and there to meet my expectant gaze is a familiar blue CD with the word Weezer on it. Huh?! How hard is it to open a CD before you ship it? The second CD was in there, but come on, let's face it, on a two-disk album the first one is always the best, the ugly sisters go on the second one.

And to get a CD that I already have, that's just insult to injury. All I could think of is any person who has an interest in Weezer has had the blue album for years. The only people still needing to buy the blue album are kids who are now back-dating their collections being that they were like two when it came out. They have no clue who Elvis Costello is. Having said that, if you like Geek rock, you must have Weezer and the Blue album is there first one, sooo great. Then their newest one, the Red album, holy crap it is the best album that I have heard in years. It has a song on there that now tops my top twenty of all time favorite songs, Heart Songs. And another one, Everybody Get Dangerous is like seriously taking a nostalgia trip into my teen years.

I got side-tracked. Now begins the whole email the dude who can't open a CD before he ships it to see if he even really has the CD or if he shipped it to poor some sap buying Wham! Make it Big! Then mail it back, find another shifty seller and hold my breath again.

So in conclusion, yeah for my new dress and boo for incompetence.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

What the...?!

Today in Algebra we were broken up in groups and set to work on an assignment. We got our little group of four all together, chatted a tiny bit and got to work. A few minutes into doing some work that didn't require any discussion I hear, "Um, ma'am?"

That would be one of my group members trying to get my attention. I was the only girl in the group and I can assume by his title the only ma'am in the group also. I hesitated and looked around to see how close by the professor was, maybe he was trying to get her attention. No such luck. I looked at him and asked, "Did you just call me ma'am?" Then he realized that he had offended me and meekly apologized.


I'd rather had been called dude. A million times over. Ma'am. shesh.

Friday, August 29, 2008

It's hard to be a grown-up...

In college. My first week as a college student is complete. Right before school started I reevaluated what I was trying to do versus what my priorities are. I was extremely stressed out about the pre-calculus class and the load I was taking on even before classes started. I took a deep breath and thought really hard about my goals and my kids and it wasn't so hard to come to a decision. I dropped two classes, the classes I was taking online, which I hate. I dropped the calculus and signed up for the math a level below it. Now I knew that making this decision means that I won't graduate in 2011. But on the other hand it gives the children a higher chance of survival by me not killing them in some stress-induced rage.

It also means that I won't graduate in 2012, either. All signs indicate that we will move in 2011. So I will go to Austin Peay until I am done with my generals, which I can do in four easy semesters. The last year we are here I won't go to school at all while I wait until we move to the next post. Hopefully at the next post I will be able to graduate. Also, the last year we are here Dan should be deployed again so not going to school that year just makes things easier.

Here is my point, though, about being a grown-up in college. Somewhere, somehow along the line I did grow up and now college kids bug me.

In every single one of my classes the kids start to clean up their stuff to leave five minutes before class is over. It is loud, distracting, and totally rude to the professor who is still trying to teach. In my Anatomy/Physiology class which has at least 50 people in it, it is the worst. The professor lectures right up until the end and people are all shuffling their things and it's hard to concentrate on the material. Don't they want to know what he is saying, don't they take notes? I seriously thought about shushing them today but that would violate my goal of staying low-key.

As I am trudging around campus the first day of school with my gimpy back, I was looking for a comfortable place to study during the two-hour break I have between classes. Which I love, I get so much work done and it frees me from having to do homework at home when I need to focus on the kids. I found some cushy seating in the student center and set up camp. It was so loud in there. All these boys playing pool and cussing at each other. A whole mess of flirting and disgusting behavior going on. And all I could think about was don't they have studying to do? Why do they have to be so loud?

Grandma that I am now, I scouted a new location with comfy seating in the library where at least it is a little more quiet.

This is all so surreal to me. I feel like I should go outside and yell at some kids to stay off my lawn. I was one of those obnoxious kids once, talking all loud, flirting, and making a general spectacle of myself. Now the kids who have taken my place are annoying and clueless to me. I always thought of myself as somewhat cool. This adult thinking is not on the list of what's cool. And I don't care, when did that happen?

Is this what my mid-life crisis is going to feel like?

I am almost positive that I am older than one of my professors. My lab instructor, I would be shocked to learn that she is older than me, it's so weird.

Last thing on an unrelated subject. I got a new lemon cake to try again with my birthday cake. Wish me luck.

Sunday, August 24, 2008


Today I turn thirty. It's too big a number to just use numerals, it must be spelled out so that everyone can feel the weight of the number.

My name is Cristtin, college sophmore, mother to three, and I am thirty.

Deep Breath...

The fates have conspired against me to make sure that I never forget my thirtieth birthday.

Let's start with Thursday, a friend called, some neighborhood teenagers had lit her thrash can on fire. She had a puddle of plastic at the end of her driveway. Like most of my Army friends, her husband is not home. She needed some tools and some help to try and get this thing off her driveway. I headed over to her house and we tried to scrape, break, and pry this thing of the concrete. We just about have it up, I have been prying it up to get some leverage so she could scrape more junk. I bend over and just heft this thing up so it will start to come up. On the second lift, my back said, "Oh yeah, I'm done." I felt my lower back just contract and implode on itself. I spent the rest of the day in bed pretty much just a lump.

I wasn't able to get into my doctor so I had to go to the urgent care clinic on post Friday morning. That took about four hours. But I did get a wonderful cocktail of drugs that have kept me pretty happy since then, even through the pain.

Friday night, went out with my sister Jenny, who had come for super-fun girl's day on Saturday. We were out about two hours when the sitter calls, "Um, Bug threw up." All I could think to ask was did he make it to the toilet? He did so we didn't really rush home.

Saturday, on the other hand, did go smoothly. I had a couple friends unable to find sitters, so there were just the three of us on our trip to Nashville. Pedicures, lunch at PF Changs, and then a little shopping before it was time to head back to pick up the kids from Super Saturday. That night Jenny and I were wiped, we both were ready for bed incredibly early. I started to conk out around 9 p.m., I think the drugs are starting to build up in my system and am getting more dopey.

The big day, I wake up this morning and it hits like a ton of bricks on my chest. I am thirty.

I was going to not go to church today and just blame the back, but Bug had a talk in Primary. There was no water-pressure in the building, so they were going to let us go home early. My back was killing me from the chairs and pews that I was sitting in. Then all of a sudden the pressure was back so church is back on. I guess I must have looked really bad today because I was asked by two separate people what was wrong with me. I was so doped up that I was having trouble focusing.

Church eventually did end so I went home to get ready for the Sister missionaries to come over for dinner because I didn't want all that cake and ice cream on my hands. Turns out I didn't need to worry about that...

That would be my birthday cake. It is a lemon cake, in case you might be wondering. Did you know that if you put a cake in the oven and then walk away and it ends up baking for about two hours this happens? Well, I do. Now. The sisters thought I had baked a chocolate cake and were really surprised to find that it was in fact supposed to be yellow. We got along just fine with my birthday ice cream.

All in all I am very pleased with my birthday. This is the stuff of good stories and I am sure to not forget it. I would much rather things be memorable than go off without a hitch and just forget all about it because it was so normal.

The one thing I could've done without is the back strain. Like I needed a reminder about how much older I am than the majority of my fellow classmates. I know, let's add a cane to the picture. On Friday, I went to the college to pick up the rest of my books and they were doing some sort of Freshman tour. There were these infants every where. I was thinking about my mortality when it hit me that the average college Freshman is closer in age to my oldest son than they are to me. They were even born in the same decade, the 90's.

Born in the 90's? While they were getting potty-trained, I was freaking out about Cobain's death. While they were riding their first tricycles, I was tearing up the road in my Ford Escort. When they started kindergarten, I was learning all the rules of streaking in the middle of the night with my best friends. I will stop this line of thought now.

Speaking of best friends. My BFF stopped by my house on her move across the country. Lisa has been my best friend for almost half my life now. We became friends at Girl's camp the summer I turned 16. I was so happy to see her even if it was just for the one night.

So I better go to bed, it's a school night, after all.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Quick Summer Wrap Up

Anyone remember how much I was freaking out about surviving the summer? Well, it would appear that I did survive. And even more surprising the children did too. With me starting school next week and my super awesome birthday girls day out this Saturday, if I don't get these pics out right now they aren't getting out. And there were a couple of cool things that happened toward the end there that I felt like sharing. Whether or not any of you care. I'll be sending this post and pics along to Dan, since he can't read this anymore, so I know at least one person cares.


DD's first swim meet and the thing I was actually a little more excited about, all their new swim gear. DD wore a swim cap for the first time. And Punx wore Jammers, it was The cutest thing he has worn, I think since he was in a onesie.

See their events written in permanent marker on their arms? Man, I love swimming. Punx wouldn't scrub his arm in the shower later that day, he wanted it to stay for as long as possible. DD scrubbed her arm pink.

Here is DD diving into the pool. See off to the right of the picture, you can see the girl is already in the pool. She has great reaction time, huh? After every race she would look at me and ask, "Did I win?"

Punx getting ready for one of his races or getting ready to pick his nose, not sure. He won his heat for the 25 yard backstroke, I was so proud. He ended up taking fifth overall in that event. He DQ'ed from the breaststroke again, so did DD. I will have to admit that made me a little proud, too. I was never any good at breatstroke. Maybe they'll be flyers like their momma.

On to their last day of gymnastics.

Bug practicing some jumps.

DD was nailing her headstands on the first class.

Punx on the balance beam.

And then our trip to Louisville to see my sister, Kaarina. My other sister, Jenny and I went to Louisville for two days to see her. She was going to Louisville for business. I hadn't see Kaarina in about two years. If only my one other sister could've been there all four of us girls could have been together.

All the kids at the science museum. It was a really cool place.

Then all of us at the Hard Rock Cafe, it was my first time at a Hard Rock. And all three of us girls by the river. Sorry about the eyes, Kaarina, the other picture you were talking so your mouth look all funky.

So that's basically got us to the end of summer. And now the kids are in school. Bug starts full time when I do. It's off to another year.

One last thing. Dan comes home for R&R in less than two months. Woo-hoo!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

It's Here! It's Here!

I was going to do a long newsy post about surviving summer and the last few things we did that I didn't get around to posting about. Very wordy, lots of pictures. Seeing my sister from Idaho that I haven't seen in a couple years. DD's first swim meet. The kids finishing up gymnastics. The kids first day of school. Putting my baby on the bus for the first time...

blah, blah, blah...All that went out the door at 2:15 p.m. central standard time by an unexpected ding dong.

I got a new toy.

The Kindle. A Kindle. My kindle, my own, my precious. I have been begging Dan for one for my birthday and lookey lookey, he listened. He was not wanting to spend the money but I finally hit him with unassailable logic. I was in love and would most likely end up getting one, one way or another. It was in his best interest to get it for me now. It will save him money. It saves him whatever he would've spent on another birthday present that I may or may not like.

Anyone not familiar with what this is? To a person who reads two or three books a week this is the best invention since the printing press.

An electronic book reader. The Kindle has the capacity to hold 200 books. With simple memory cards like you use in your digital camera your library stash can be as big as your real one. And to download a book is often more than half the price. All books 9.99 or less. A normal best-seller hardback book is $25, after 25 books, my kindle has paid for itself.

And it has a built in Oxford dictionary, access to Wikipedia, and can download books wirelessly without ever paying for any sort of internet or contract. Amazon pays for what they call the whispernet and it uses the cellphone internet so connection is every where you get cell coverage.

No doubt to any of you I could go on and on about how great this thing is but it has given me a true dilemma.

Which book do I get first? This is a decision of momentous weight. I will forever remember this. Fiction, nonfiction? Thriller, sci-fi, fantasy? Each book says something about the reader. I can't just get something I want to read and call it a day. This matters.

And yes, I did the same thing to my ipod. I sat there with a large stack of CD's agonizing over what would go in first. It was John Mayer followed immediately by Jack Johnson.

I think I need to take a chill. Curling up with a good book always relaxes me. Argh!

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Chicken sans head

It's been a few months since I had a meltdown, right? So it's time. I'm entitled to one now, ok?

Entitled or not, I am having one. I won't bore you with my whole to-do list just my top two.

The kids start school on Friday. I start school about two weeks after that. I am taking seventeen credits. One of my classes is Pre-Calculus. It has been six years since I went to school. Longer since I took college algebra. But to graduate in the time before we move, I have to take Pre-Calc right now. So I have been studying everyday from a textbook that is the math level just below the class I am about to take, as a refresher. Want to know what doing Algebra everyday for hours on end of your own volition does to your will to live? No, you don't.

So, I am freaking out. I don't know how I am going to handle this class and the unknown is my enemy. Once school starts and I am in motion things will be better. I can get a tutor, meet with academic advising, have options. Right now my option is calling my Dad and asking him to please go over functions with me and please explain their purpose. And could you kindly tell me why they exist in the first place?

Also, there is something wrong with the computer so I got an external hard drive to save all my files and am going to attempt a reboot to see if I can fix the problem that way. I found a trojan horse on the computer a few weeks ago and removed it but I think that there must be something else that the scans are not picking up. Just the thought of being without my computer sends me in to hyper-ventilate mode. But if I can't fix it, looks like I am going to have to suck it up and take it to Chuck after all. Just for them to look at it is going to be like $200, man.

I will be pretty scare for the next little while. And a pretty bad blog reader, too. I just opened up my email and had 45 messages and my google reader had 73 posts. It is time for me to focus on the freak-out. I pretty much deleted all the emails and am just going to clear the reader.

Because I need to get back to my Algebra. Is it bad if your brain feels squishy?

Saturday, August 02, 2008

Saturday to-do list

I've got everything done on my to-do list today and it's only nine p.m. so that still means I'll get a couple good hours of veg time in now that the kids are in bed. There is nothing I love more than days that are in the extremes. Extremely lazy or extremely productive and today was one of those miraculous days where it felt like I accomplished both so I wanted to give the results.

Pick-up the children from their first sleep-over (all of them)

Watch four kids all day

Clean the kitchen and floor

Take all seven kids out for some sprinkler time

Pay the bills

And read Breaking Dawn

The last one on the list was obviously my top priority so it got the majority of my attention today. Oh man, it was so excellent. I am very satisfied with the whole thing. There are always those couple things here and there that you wish were in a last book, but she can't make all these totally insane uber-fans happy. For this book I had two firsts. One, an actual audible reaction to something that happened in the story. Two, when my friends and I went to the book party last night at midnight we totally geeked out. I even made a T-Shirt. We all wore T-Shirts... pledge our allegiance to our sides. They had those iron-ons that came in the special edition of Eclipse that I didn't even know existed. I just made mine. Team Jacob was across my back. Not to say anything about the character Bella, it's just a personal connection. If I had to personally choose one I would choose Jacob. It's a tough personal choice that every girl has to make. Not saying anything bad about Edward, he is wonderful. But I am a sucker for a sense of humor and the over protective thing would bug me.

So you can see what my totally geeked out shirt says.

I even won a book, from winning a trivia contest the book store was doing at the party. It's not a book I've ever heard of but I am not one to ever turn down free book.

I can't wait to hear how any one who has read the book liked it, or like in my case was really surprised by some of the stuff and loved it.

Although I hate it when a series comes to an end, it makes me so sad.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Feeling the need to clear my name

I think that just the fact that I am writing the post at all proves my point that I have OCD issues. I did that photo tag, see just below, and most everyone got it. I have organizational issues. But there was one comment, just one, where someone called me a neat freak. And being the never-let-it-go person that I am. I am addressing the issue. To everyone and in particular my brother-in-law Mike that leveled the accusation that I am a neat freak here it is...

I am not a neat freak. I am an organization freak.

There is a distinction, like the difference between dork, geek, and nerd. A very fine line to walk, yes, but I like things in their place. I don't necessarily care if they are clean while they are there. I love baskets, especially if they match, folders, shelves, and systems.

I don't have a problem with the intensely clean it's just that I don't count myself among their numbers. A dirty kitchen floor will not bother me, in fact, I'll just leave the room and go read. A book shelf where one of the books is on the wrong shelf, now we are talking, that will be fixed.

One example for you to truly understand the level of the psychosis:

Looks harmless enough, my CD case. Each nook has a reason and within each nook there is further reason. The sections that hold bands that I have more than one CD of are all grouped together. Then there is the church section. Then the three sections when I explained to my brother-in-law Brian I got a "Are you serious or sick?" look. Bands that I have only one CD of broken into three groups. Punk/Ska, Older than twenty years/classic rock, and rock of the recent twenty years. And did I mention that they are in Alphabetical order? I also have a drawer of CD's in my bedroom that I don't put on display for various reasons, they are burned so in cases that are not pretty therefore un-displayable, kids CD's that I will not admit to owning, and other things that defy my system therefore have been banished.

I could delve deeper to figure out the reason for my freaky ways but I think I do it for a few simple reasons. The obvious trying to have control in an out of control world. I really like pretty shelves and organized and being able to find things easily. I was raised by someone of a more pack-ratty tendency and have swung the other way.

I believe that any organizational freak has their dark secrets just like I do. There are a few people that I have no secrets from and have seen the madness behind the order but here it is, dark secrets no more.

My desk is almost always in some state of shambles. Especially since I got DSL, I used to clean during page loading waiting time but that time disappeared and so did desk tidy time. I am currently on my third system of organization for my office and am still unsatisfied.

The other side of the pantry floor, holding all the things left to do on the never-ending kitchen remodel that I haven't done anything for in about six months. For full disclosure benefit once I took this picture I looked into myself and realized that there was no way I was doing any more work on the kitchen by myself until Dan gets home and promptly moved it all into the garage so as to not have to see it mock me everyday and now it looks rather nice with just the toolbox, ice chests, and shopping bags. And the water jugs to be cleaned for long storage.

I didn't take a picture of the garage my deepest of all messes because that is too much revelation even for me on one day.

A few more example of my excessive organization for everyone to mock:

Our upstairs storage closet. It holds sleeping bags, luggage, and the holiday totes. I bet you can't guess for what holidays though.

Now before anyone thinks I am totally Sleeping With the Enemy crazy, this is out short-term "comfort" food storage on the top shelf of the pantry so it doesn't get touched much so, yes, I felt the need to make it pretty. And my normal food supply doesn't look like this.

And before you think "poor Dan," I don't force any of this on him. Any laundry that I have specific needs on how it is to be folded I never ask him to fold, like the towels and all their categories, I am not going to get into another explanation and sound like Monica. He is excused and encouraged to not participate in the madness.

So I am pretty sure that I have made my point that I have an organization problem not a neat/clean problem. I think we have established that freak is totally justified but just don't ever accuse me of being a clean freak, it obviously gets my back up.

I just did my proofreading before posting, man, I sound like a nutter, oh well.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Picture Tag

This has been going around and I decided to do it at the beginning of the month and then didn't do it. But then Stacey tagged me by name so I figured since I had already taken the pictures, I would just post them. As stated by the rules of the tag, I took the pictures the moment I decided to do it, July 4th around 11 a.m. They have just been sitting on my computer since then.

So the rules are you take pictures of the ten things on the list without any prior clean up or sprucing. Anyone seeing these pics will know that I followed the rules.

1. My closet

I don't think there is much to say here, I think my anal-ness is speaking volumes for itself right here.

2. My Bathroom

As you can tell we had just gotten back from the lake and all the shoes, toys, life jackets, etc still needed to be cleaned and washed. When I say just got back, I mean like three days.

3. What the children are doing right now...

Punx, he didn't even acknowledge my existence.

DD, with the pose and facial expression of her generation.

Bug, no clue what he was doing there under the coffee table.

4. Favorite shoes

My OP's baby, does anyone else remember those teeny-tiny corduroy shorts?

5. Dream Vacation

Hawaii, do I really need to say more?

6. Fridge

[insert quippy food pun here]

7. Self-Portrait

As I appear to the children on most days and that is me still in my pajamas at almost 11 a.m., good day.

8. Favorite Room

The living room, it is a no-kid zone. This is an adult functioning room. It is where I keep my pretty books and my music. I always keep it clean. The first room in the house that I will clean, I should say. I will sit on the couch with a book or some music on and can really relax here. I do allow the children to enter it from time to time but with strict rules. And there is no TV in this room.

9. Kitchen Sink

Dishes I can be proud of. Not only are they proof that I actually cooked, they are proof that my kids got a hot breakfast!

10. Laundry Room

I don't have a room, I have a closet. I put my sorter in my pantry which is right next to the closet. I had to remove one shelf to get it to fit but I just moved it to the top.

That was fun. I am not tagging anyone, if you want to do it, just do it.