Friday, December 31, 2010

Flash Bulb Friday


Happy New Year's Eve!
 
Somehow, it just felt right to post a Christmasy picture today. It'll be the last one until next year, right? The reason behind this photo is that I'm still feeling cruddy about my decision to bail on Christmas with my family. I promise this will be the last mention of it though! I don't want to dampen the spirit of today's awesome holiday! It's a fresh start and a new beginning and it's time to leave all the crappy things that happened in 2010 behind us and celebrate the life and wonderfulness ahead!
 
Plus, I figured a train could symbolize moving forward, right? Eh... who am I kidding? There's no real, honest symbolism behind this. I pretty much picked it because I didn't want to post any photos from past New Year's Eve parties where my friends were drunk on the floor or puking in the bushes or humping random bartenders. Oh, the good old days!
 
So here's to a safe, but fun, new year's eve!
 
Rum for everyone!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Year in Review

It became sort of a tradition on my old blog to post a year-end recap of all the exciting things that happened throughout the year. A look back at the wacky, wild, and wonderful year of 2010 in the life of Gail & Puff!
 
January - Welcomed in the new year by spending 4 straight days sick on the couch, while rocking the most hideous plaid PJ pants you have ever seen. And I decided I still hate boats.
 
February - A hoity-toity restaurant misplaced our Valentine's Day reservation but we also visited a museum with lots of naked lady paintings, complete with some monster bush.
 
March - Sported a tiara and pink veil while drinking lots of rum with my college buddies. Oh, the good ol' 420 days relived!
 
April - Sported a tiara and pink veil while drinking lots of rum with my high school buddies and my ex-boyfriend. Nothing weird there.
 
May - Donned the white dress, took lots of fun photos at an abandoned building, married my best friend, drank some rum, ate some cake, and had a grand ol' time. Topped it off with a week away in the Caribbean. Even though neither of us like the beach. Or boats.
 
June - Kimhead got to shake hands with the lead singer of Lifehouse and I was crazy ass jealous. My parents came to town, as did The MIL, and we had a ridiculously pointless follow-up reception. On the bright side, my parents took us out for more rum afterwards. I swear I'm not a drunkard. Celebrations, like marriage, just involve some alcohol from time to time!
 
July - Puff and I went to Hilton Head with some friends and tried to go sea kayaking. It kicked our butts and we hated each other for it. We will be headed straight to divorce court if we ever have to do that again. Then we went to Chattanooga to look at black-lit gnomes and I got hit on by a tour guide in a cave. In front of my husband. And he didn't even try to cock-block the guy. I married such a sweetie!
 
August - August is hot and sticky and gross in South Carolina. So we didn't do much. The one day we did try to get out to the mountains, it ended up raining. I had a big week at work too. And it made me hate women. More so than I did already.
 
September - I started this blog in full force and got to share with you the ridiculous feats of Puff... like horseback riding around a ring and camping in our backyard. We went to an apple festival where I gorged on apple fritters. Almost made the hour drive, paying a ridiculous fee to park, and dodging 920834309 people in a crowd worth it. Almost.
 
October - What didn't we do in October? Race cars, good friends, food festival, trip up north, friends, weddings. And the weather was perfect. Maybe I wish it was October all the time.
 
November - Epic temper tantrum from The MIL, moving my best SC friend 100 miles away, and my normal hatred for Thanksgiving ensued. Yeah, I pretty much loathe November.
 
December - Great "Hell Week" at work followed by lots of festive fun for Christmas. Yeah, so I technically feel like I missed Christmas, but it wasn't that bad overall. Next year, we're staying in The Fort even if we have to drive back in 19034 feet of snow. I'm pretty sure my SUV can handle that, right?
 
So... our NYE plans are a late dinner at our favorite seafood restaurant, where I can orgasm over blackened halibut and get drunk on the best raspberry martinis in town. Then a weekend full of things only married people do, like outlet mall shopping & a scheduled movie date. And I wouldn't have it any other way.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Regret Me Not

Sometimes in life, we make decisions that we immediately regret. I have made it a point ever since my senior year of high school to try to live by the lyrics of a Robbie Williams song that says "No regrets, they don't work. No regrets, they only hurt." Why? Well, because gosh darn-it, he's totally right!
 
With the threat of 3 inches of snow through all of Kentucky (including the rural parts) and snow & sleet in the mountains of North Carolina, Puff and I made the difficult decision on Christmas Eve to leave The Fort early and drive back to SC. Meaning, we completely missed Christmas with my mom's side of the family. You know... the part of Christmas that makes it feel like Christmas. The part I look forward to most every year. The part that I'd been hyping up to Puff for months to get him prepared for the excitement and fun. Yeah... we fucking missed that part.
 
And I regretted the decision immediately. Especially when we went by my Granny's house on our way out of town to pick up our gifts. She was so sad. I almost cried. It was ridiculous. Right then and there, we should have changed our minds. But the thought of getting stranded on the side of the road in Podunk, Kentucky, and having to wait 14 hours for a tow truck while having to pee in a Ziploc baggie just didn't really appeal to me. And when I look outside now and see 2 inches of snow (or more??) on the ground in South Carolina, maybe it was the right decision. (They were saying last night those curvy, rural, inhospitable mountains we drive through could have gotten up to 12 inches!)
 
But yes, I rarely regret anything in my life. I can probably list less than 3 things that really, honestly made me upset for a long time that I truly, 100% regretted. It just sucks that missing Christmas had to be one of them. The phone call yesterday from Granny telling me how disappointed everyone was didn't help either. But at least I had my husband. We were together and safe and cozy in our warm house, while the snow fell outside. And I know it could have been a lot worse. It was a lot worse for other people out there.
 
Every once and awhile I throw myself a pity party. And I'm in the midst of this one still.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Sound Bite Sunday

I'm sure I've got lots to update about the holidays, but for today, just a simple sound bite. Shinedown is a band I found out I liked for a really odd reason... Chris Daughtry on American Idol. He sang one of their songs during his season and when I liked it, I went out and bought the Shinedown CD. From there, I became a huge fan. Yes, they are pretty hardcore, even though they've had a few recent songs with mild success in the Top 40. However, one major difference between them and a lot of other modern rock bands... the lead singer, can actually sing. This is one of my faves of theirs to show off his vocal chops. Enjoy!
 
"Call Me" by Shinedown
 

Wrap me in a bolt of lightning
Send me on my way still smiling
Maybe that's the way I should go,
Straight into the mouth of the unknown
I left the spare key on the table
Never really thought I'd be able to say
I merely visit on the weekends
I lost my whole life and a dear friend

I've said it so many times
I would change my ways
No, nevermind
God knows I've tried

[Chorus]
Call me a sinner, call me a saint
Tell me it's over I'll still love you the same
Call me your favorite, call me the worst
Tell me it's over I don't want you to hurt
It's all that I can say. So, I'll be on my way

I finally put it all together,
But nothing really lasts forever
I had to make a choice that was not mine,
I had to say goodbye for the last time
I kept my whole life in suitcase,
Never really stayed in one place
Maybe that's the way it should be,
You know I live my life like a gypsy

I've said it so many times
I would change my ways
No, nevermind
God knows I've tried

[Chorus]
Call me a sinner, call me a saint
Tell me it's over I'll still love you the same
Call me your favorite, call me the worst
Tell me it's over I don't want you to hurt
It's all that I can say. So, I'll be on my way

I'll always keep you inside, you healed my
Heart and my life... And you know I try.

[Chorus]
Call me a sinner, call me a saint
Tell me it's over I'll still love you the same
Call me your favorite, call me the worst
Tell me it's over I don't want you to hurt
It's all that I can say. So, I'll be on my way
So, I'll be on my way
So, I'll be on my way

Friday, December 24, 2010

Flash Bulb Friday


Happy Christmas Eve! 

Today is the best holiday in my family. I get to spend part of the day with my dad's family opening fabulous gifts and then the evening is when all chaos breaks loose at my mom's family. There will be at least 20 of us, if not 30 of us, at my grandmother's house this evening, with a pile of gifts so high you can't walk around it. And plenty of bourbon slush for everyone! It's always my favorite holiday memory, and this is the first year Puff gets to experience it! It will be such a change from just he and the MIL only! 

Anyway... today's photo is just a reminder of someplace warm. Because gosh darnit, it's cold and snowy and gray here in The Fort! I'm ready for spring. Or I'm ready to be in Mexico. Either works just fine. 

From Choice, Not Chance, to you and your family... Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Puff's Quips

One recent Saturday, Puff and I scheduled a date night. However, I had to work during the day and a football game's dismissal was mucking up our restaurant plans. So we decided to skip lunch and eat dinner with the old folks. We pulled up to a booth at all of 4:15pm.
 
During dinner, I commented on the music they were playing and how it seemed odd and that I felt trapped in a soap opera. Moments later, when the song changed, Puff lit up.
 
"I know this song! This is Yanni!"
 
Imagine my shock and embarassment as he proceeded to inform me that when he was in high school, he used to drive around in his big ol' red Buick and jam to his Yanni cassette tape.
 
I married a dork. But I love him anyway. 
 
_____________________________________________________________

And a new one from last night...

Me: How does this sweater look?

Puff: You're showing a lot of boobs. You need one of those things. (Gestures to his neck/chest area)

Me: A dickie?

Puff: Yeah, kinda like a dickie. Something that the Duggar's would wear. I don't know. Um... like a promiscuity blanket.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Nothing Says Xmas like a Zebra... Except Maybe a Peacock

A bulleted list of random, yet interestingly quirky, things that happened this past weekend in Atlanta...
  • During the funeral of The MIL's man-friend, they mentioned someone who used to be the Grand Poobah of the KKK years ago. Only in Georgia.
  • Apparently if you live in Michigan, you think 35 is balmy.
  • The MIL can buy my adoration with gifts, as she proved by buying me more than Puff for Christmas.
  • And lastly, when you live in a redneck part of town, nothing says "Merry Christmas" quite like a tacky light display. And yes, I made Puff get out of the car (twice) to take these pictures of their awesome animal display in their front yard!




Update: Totally forgot to mention the Yeti from "Rudolph" who had boobs and red lights for nipples! Christmas lights are totally badass. Love it! 

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Sound Bite Sunday

As a general rule, I totally hate Christmas music. I think it comes from working retail one year during the holidays and being forced to listen to the same obnoxious 8 songs over and over again... including one sung by Alvin & the Chipmunks!
 
That being said, I don't want to come off as a total grinch. So, I am suggesting a Christmas song from my favorite Christmas album of all time. Go ahead and try to judge me. This song isn't any worse than any other...
 
Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays by 'N Sync
 
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays
Merry Christmas, Merry Christmas
Happy Holidays
We've been waiting all year for this night
And the snow is glistening on the trees outside
And all the stockings are hung by the fire side
Waitng for Santa to arrive
And all the love will show
'Cause everybody knows
It's Christmastime and
All the kids will see
The gifts under the tree

It's the best time of the year for the family
It's a wonderful feeling
Feel the love in the room
From the floor to the ceiling
It's that time of year
Christmastime is here
And with the blessings from above
God sends you his love
And everybody's okay
Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays
Merry Christmas
Merry Christmas
Happy Holidays

Bells are ringing
It's time to scream and shout (scream and shout)
And everybody's playing cause school's out
Celebrating this special time we share
Happiness cause love is in the air

And all the love will show
'Cause everybody knows
It's Christmastime and
All the kids will see
The gifts under the tree
It's the best time of the year for the family
It's a wonderful feeling
Feel the love in the room
>From the floor to the ceiling
It's that time of year
Christmastime is here
And with the blessings from above
God sends you his love
And everthing's okay
Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays
Merry Christmas
Merry Christmas
Happy Holidays

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays
Merry Christmas
Merry Christmas
Happy Holidays

No matter what your holiday
It's a time to celebrate
And put your worries aside (worries aside)
And open up your mind (open up your mind)
See the world right by your side
It's Christmastime
Merry Christmas, Merry Christmas, Merry Christmas
Happy Holidays
Merry Christmas, Merry Christmas, Merry Christmas
Happy Holidays

It's a wonderful feeling
Feel the love in the room
From the floor to the ceiling
It's that time of year
Christmastime is here
And with the blessings from above
God sends you his love
And everything's okay
Merry Christmas, Merry Christmas, Merry Christmas
Happy Holidays
Merry Christmas, Merry Christmas, Merry Christmas
Happy Holidays
Merry Christmas, Merry Christmas, Merry Christmas
Happy Holidays

Friday, December 17, 2010

Flash Bulb Friday


HAPPY HOLIDAYS!!!
 
Tacky, much? Wowza! In a suburb just outside of town, there is this dude in a subdivision who goes outrageously overboard with Xmas lights each year. Puff found an article about him in the paper and we've had to go for the past few years. Each year it gets better. He's gradually overtaking other people's yards and adding new things. He even has Smurf lights! How cool is that?!?!
 
But really, wouldn't you just hate to be his neighbor????

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Sounds of an Angel

Waking up early on a Sunday morning with church looming ahead is about as exciting to me as discovering an ass pimple. However, this past weekend was a bit different. I awoke with giddy excitement. It was Puff's choral debut at our church. (Yes, I'm officially an associate member of a Baptist church. Commence hysterical laughter. I'll wait!) Anyway... he had been rehearsing with them for the last month or longer (since The MIL told him to join the choir so he doesn't lose his "gift") and it was time to shine and sing some Christmas cheer!
 
I had to meet him at church, since he had to get there early to suit up in his stylin' robe and purple scarf-thingie, and was thankful when a fellow member asked to sit with me. Even though you don't talk through church, it's always nice to have company. When the preacher announced the start of service, the members of the choir entered from the rear and walked into the aisle. They sang part of a song there. But I couldn't turn to look for Puff. Why not, you wonder? Because every last bit of me wanted to look at him and giggle. For some reason, it just struck me as the funniest thing he could have ever done.
 
But I'm still proud of him. The choir sounded great, he didn't noticeably fuck up anything (hard to tell though... lol) and he was happy I was there to support him. Even if I couldn't look him in the eye because I was trying so hard to resist making goofy faces.
 

Monday, December 13, 2010

I'm hungry...

One day recently, my boss and another co-worker were discussing their dinner plans. I joined the conversation by mentioning that night's menu was grilled steak and homemade au gratin potatoes. My boss looked at me like it was so weird to know what I was going to eat for dinner.
 
 
Let me back up a second and remind you of my undiagnosed, but oh-so-obvious, OCD. Sometimes, it's a hindrance. Puff will be quick to point out he sometimes hates me for having to sleep with a fan so I can hear the white noise and drown out all the other night sounds... namely his irregularly paced breathing. And don't even get me started on trying to sleep through rain... it's just impossible! But at other times, I think it really helps me. (In fact, I think it helps reign in my ADD, which is why that's also going undiagnosed!) I keep lots of calendars (typically 3, but at this time of year, it's 6, since we're so close to the new year) and DON'T YOU DARE think about writing on anything of mine with your unapproved handwriting. (Especially you, Kimhead! But that keeps me super organized and keeps me on top of everything and planned so I can be a good employee and structure my hectic life. And you can't really blame me for keeping a color-coded spreadsheet for my Christmas gifts. You know you want to pick on me, but really, you're just jealous that my OCD keeps me so organized that I can shop a year in advance and keep track of it all.

 
Back to that dinner conversation. When they probed a little bit more about my seemingly innocent plan for dinner, they came to find out that I may go just a wee bit overboard on the OCDness when it comes to groceries and such. The grocery list stays on the fridge and we add to it what we need. We try to only shop twice a month, so when it comes time to go to the store, I rewrite the list. So it's in chronological order of the layout of the grocery store. And yes, I walk through the store with my list and pen in hand and scratch off everything as we put it in the cart. (But surprisingly, I'm not a price hunter or coupon clipper.) But because we do this, I also do a menu for dinner twice a month. To me, it just makes logical sense. If you know what you plan to make for dinner each night, that sure makes the grocery trip a lot easier.
 
 
And don't tell me that you don't make your own menu! And that you don't type it up and hang it on the refrigerator.
 
 
OK, so maybe you don't. But dammit... 
 
 
Ahhh... just leave me alone!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Sound Bite Sunday

I don't really have much of a backstory for this song today. I probably would have a good one if this song had come out before I met Puff. Somehow, it seems like it would be 100% relevant to my life. Thankfully, right now, it's not. However, I still love it.
 
"Learn my Lesson" by Daughtry
 
Tonight the sunset means so much
The one thing that you know you'll never touch
Like the feeling, the real thing
I reach out for that sweet dream

But somehow the darkness wakes me up
I've felt this emptiness before
But all the times that I've been broken
I still run right back for more

You'd think that I'd learn my lesson by now
You'd think that I'd somehow figure out
That if you strike the match
You're bound to feel the flame

You think that I'd learn the cost of love
Paid that price long enough
But still I drive myself right through the pain
Yeah, well it turns out, I haven't learned a thing

Sometimes I think I'm better off
To turn out the lights and close up shop
And give up the longing, believing in belonging
Just hold down my head and take the loss

You'd think that I'd learn my lesson by now
You'd think that I'd somehow figure out
That if you strike the match
You're bound to feel the flame

You'd think that I'd learn the cost of love
Paid that price long enough
But still I drive myself right through the pain
Yeah, well it turns out, I haven't learned a thing

Friday, December 10, 2010

Flash Bulb Friday


No, this isn't an homage to my favorite calendar (Studs & Spurs) but rather a fond memory of the weekend I got engaged. Because nothing says "I love you" quite like some armor.
 
On this Friday, one year ago, Puff and I were happily bitching about the cold weather in New York City on a long weekend getaway. Puff had lived in NYC for several years and loves to be there during the holidays. While it was definitely a fun (and memorable) trip, the part I loved the most was slipping that engagement ring on my finger and getting to giggle and squeal with delight. (Once we were out of the park and back in a warm car!)
 
The next day, Puff and I set out to explore The Met and I snapped this photo while we were wandering. There was a group of children sitting on the floor around this huge life-size display of a solider on horseback. They were all sketching their favorite parts. And this part was my favorite. And is since one of my all-time favorite photos I have ever taken.
 
I'm just happy I can explain to people that it was made even more special by the special life-changing moment that happened the night before!  

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Cowboy Hat Required

I AM SO EXCITED!!!!
 
Here's the deal... Puff and I have decided that in October 2011, we're going to try our hardest to make a trip to Lousiana happen. Why Louisiana, you ask? Only because they have the most badass event in the history of events... the Angola Prison Rodeo! (http://www.angolarodeo.com/)
 
I just started to do some research and have figured out flight options and how the whole long weekend would work. Fly into New Orleans and check that out, and then on the Sunday of the rodeo, drive to the Louisiana State Pen out in Bumblefuck to watch prisoners get the shit kicked out of them by a bull. I just want to squeal with delight!
 
But then, it gets even better! (Really, you're wondering. How could it get any better? Well, it can!) So, I'm on Mapquest looking up directions from New Orleans to Tunica and realize there's a line on the map that is very intriguing. To back up for one second... it's a life goal to hit all 50 states before I die. I'm not even 30 years old yet and have been to 42 of them. So, not half bad, right? Well, two states that have been eluding me that seem so close are Louisiana and Mississippi. Now, we figured this trip would easily knock our LA but then... that line! It's the STATE line! And it's only 6 miles from the prison!
 
So not only will I be able to go and buy prisoner arts & crafts and watch them play poker in front of a giant bull, I can also drive a mere 6 miles out of my way and pick up another state! Bring on Mississippi, bitches!
 
You better believe if Puff would let me right now, I'd be booking those plane tickets!!!!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Gotta Get Me Some...


Best story of the week so far:

I returned a call from someone who had left me a message during my craziness last week. I just got back to the guy, but he was understanding. We got to talking that he needed me to send him some information about something upcoming in January. I asked him what his product was that his company sells.

His answer?

"High End Lubricant."

Enough said.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Don't Get Too Excited

It's now, officially, time to take the biggest sigh EVER.
 
::sigh::
 
(Somehow, that seems a little anti-climactic.)
 
Anyway... my week from Hell is finally over! In the end, it wasn't all that bad. Numbers were up, profits were up, most people were happy, and the few cranky-pants who weren't just won't ever see me ever again. And I'm totally OK with that.
 
I prep all year for this one week, but that doesn't ever make it any easier. Think about it like when you were back in college and it was finals week. Like when you were having late night cram study sessions, complete with delivery pizza and a Zima (plus Jolly Rancher) and you realize that maybe you should have attended more than two of your economics classes, even though the professor was a giant douche-canoe and you didn't understand anything he was saying. Plus that business building was so far from your dorm! (Er... residence hall. Happy University Lingo Nazi?) That realization that you've got to stay up all night, all week, to learn all that new stuff, plus take all those other tests, plus walk from one end of campus to the other on no energy, no sleep, and low blood sugar. Yeah... my week was kinda like that. Times ten. Although, I did lose 4 pounds. Always a silver lining, right?
 
So as I start to take control of my life again, get the house in order, and refuse to iron Puff's shirts for the week, I will now be on a more normal posting schedule. I'm BAAAAACK!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Sound Bite Sunday

I survived my crazy-ass week! Yippee! Or at least I'm assuming I survived since I'm around to post this. I might not be all there mentally for a few days, or physically for that matter, but at least I still have my job!
 
I realized years ago that music has an overwhelmingly interesting affect on me at certain times. And stressful times are a key example. (Or depressed times. Or just being bored times.) But there is always one song I know I can jump in the car, crank up the volume, and drive around aimlessly listening to. And that song will always make me feel better. The best part is that my dad does the same thing. To the same song. And whenever he hears it come on the radio when he's out driving to a client or driving aimlessly to avoid being at home, he always thinks of me. And sometimes, he'll even call me and leave the "power chords" on my voicemail. My dad's pretty awesome.
 
And so, to mark the end of my hectic week and the return of my sanity, an ode to getting by and having fun too!
 
Peace of Mind by Boston
 

Now if you're feelin' kinda low 'bout the dues you've been paying
Future's coming much too slow
And you wanna run but somehow you just keep on stayin'
Can't decide on which way to go
Yeah, yeah, yeah


I understand about indecision
But I don't care if I get behind
People livin' in competition
All I want is to have my peace of mind.

Now you're climbin' to the top of the company ladder
Hope it doesn't take too long
Can'tcha see there'll come a day when it won't matter
Come a day when you'll be gone


I understand about indecision
But I don't care if I get behind
People livin' in competition
All I want is to have my peace of mind.

Take a look ahead, take a look ahead, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah...woa!

Now everybody's got advice they just keep on givin'
Doesn't mean too much to me
Lot's of people out to make-believe they're livin'
Can't decide who they should be.


I understand about indecision
But I don't care if I get behind
People livin' in competition
All I want is to have my peace of mind.

Take a look ahead, take a look ahead. Look ahead.

Monday, November 29, 2010

M.I.A. but Not the Rapper

Today marks the start of my most insane, crazy, busy, hectic, stressful week of the entire year. And that is no exaggeration. To say my job hinges on this week is a bit of an over-statement, but the reality is, that it kinda does. Since you may or may not know what I do for a living, and since I vowed to keep that out of this to ensure the stability of my job from being blog-fired, just trust me when I say it will be mayhem.
 
But good mayhem. The more people, the better.
 
So, with that being said, just wanted to let you know I'll probably be MIA until this coming weekend. (Unless I start digging through archives!)
 
Try not to forget about me!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Sound Bite Sunday

I feel like a lot of my songs lately have been a little, let's say, gloomy. So, with it being just after Thanksgiving and all, I thought I would share a song that to me, is a little more upbeat. Well, not technically upbeat, but the lyrics are happier.
 
Anyway... I first heard this song round about my freshman year of college. I liked it. I knew the words. I kinda forgot about it for years though. Until I met Puff. Somehow I stumbled across it in the year leading up to our engagement and realized it was the song I was destined to walk down the aisle to. (Of course I couldn't do something traditional! Duh! How boring and totally NOT me!) Then in the spring during our engagement, I bought the new Lifehouse album that had a special second disc. When I was listening to it, there was a live version of this song and it was just destined to be. I almost teared up listening to it on the car ride home that night! 
 
When you listen to the song, there is a perfect tempo change that was the exact moment that I timed for me to walk down the aisle. Oh so perfect! I loved how it worked out! I even had to print the lyrics of the song in our wedding programs. That way, everyone who didn't know the song (which was probably all but like 3 people... my husband didn't even know it!) could read the lyrics and understand the beauty in it. I will now always hold this song close to my heart. It's beautiful. It's amazing. And it reminds me of the love of my life.
 
Everything by Lifehouse
 
Find Me Here
Speak To Me
I want to feel you
I need to hear you
You are the light
That's leading me
To the place where I find peace again.

You are the strength, that keeps me walking.
You are the hope, that keeps me trusting.
You are the light to my soul.
You are my purpose...you're everything.

How can I stand here with you and not be moved by you?
Would you tell me how could it be any better than this?

You calm the storms, and you give me rest.
You hold me in your hands, you won't let me fall.
You steal my heart, and you take my breath away.
Would you take me in? Take me deeper now?

How can I stand here with you and not be moved by you?
Would you tell me how could it be any better than this?
And how can I stand here with you and not be moved by you?
Would you tell me how could it be any better than this?

Cause you're all I want, You're all I need
You're everything,everything
You're all I want your all I need
You're everything, everything.
You're all I want you're all I need.
You're everything, everything
You're all I want you're all I need, you're everything, everything.

And How can I stand here with you and not be moved by you?
Would you tell me how could it be any better than this?
How can I stand here with you and not be moved by you?
Would you tell me how could it be any better than this?

How can I stand here with you and not be moved by you?
Would you tell me how could it be any better than this?

Would you tell me how could it be any better than this?

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Slackass Saturday

 
 
Did you like my witty new title for when I'm not around on a Friday to do my Flash Bulb post? It's like I'm a Wizard of Words!
 
Moving forward... since I don't have any photos of turkeys or Dallas Cowboys football games handy, I figured I would post a picture of something that makes me thankful. Confused yet? Really? Old ratty chairs don't make YOU thankful? What is wrong with America? ::sigh::
 
Puff and I took a jam-packed weekend tour of the Smokies in June 2009 to celebrate our one year anniversary of putting up with each other. We went zorbing (check it out on the InterGoogle - totally worth the $70 a person) and played putt-putt golf in Gatlinburg. We bought salt-water taffy and researched air-brushed t-shirts. (That shit's expensive!) And on the way home, we took the long, winding mountain roads and stumbled across a mill somewhere in the middle of no where. While we were walking about, I spotted this chair, and when I snapped this photo, it instantly became one of my all-time favorites. (So much so that it's hanging framed on the wall in our home office!)
 
But why does this picture remind me to be thankful? It reminds me of my insanely intense, undying love for Puff. We had such a great time on that anniversary trip and it was a total celebration of our relationship. It was fun and interesting and yet, goofy and cheesy all at the same time.
 
Which, basically, is us in a nutshell.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

I'm Supposed to be Festive? Ugh...

Happy Paid Day Off to Watch Cowboys Football!!!!
 
Is there any other reason to get excited for this day?
 
Hardly not... dry turkey, nasty ass pumpkin flavored things, runny cranberries. Yuck! Yuck! Yuck! And don't even get me started on the total ridiculousness of shopping the sales tomorrow. Are the sales really that good that you have to camp out at 4am? I hardly think so.
 
All that being said, Puff and I are about to hit the road to Atlanta to spend a few days with The MIL. Trust me, I'm less than excited about the entire scenario. However, I'll put on my happy face. On the bright side, we're supposed to go out to eat today, which means a wider assortment of foods, so hopefully there will be something I can eat. (Oh no wait! Since I first wrote this draft, I've come to find out that The MIL forgot to make us dinner reservations! Thanksgiving at McDonalds... here we come!) And yes, that dreaded shopping. Tomorrow marks my second ever (in my entire almost 30 years of existence) that I have ever gone shopping on Black Friday. Again, less than thrilled. Although I guess they just assumed that since I survived last year, they would once again test my sanity and resiliance against the public and mass stupidity.
 
Am I missing anything? Oh yeah... what am I thankful for? Well, Cowboys football, is probably numero uno today. (Did I just say that out loud?) Of course I meant that my husband and family are tops on my list! In all sincerity... my family, my friends, my health, my life, my opportunities are all amazing and yes, I am truly thankful for them.
 
I'd ask you what you're thankful for, but apparently my readers are slack-asses since the last "Reader Participation Day" failed miserably. If you feel so compelled, leave a comment. But mostly, just enjoy the time with family (say hi to my family if you see them) and cross your fingers for a Cowboys win! (Because yes, really, that is the only redeeming quality of this holiday!)

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Roach Babies: Part Deux

Dum, dum, dum, dum... DUMMMMMM!!!!
 
::sigh:: My bow-tied dermatologist diagnosed that mysterious bump on my stomach last week. And unfortunately, Puff and I will not be having roach babies. Yes, I'm sure you share in our disappointment. Perhaps God just has bigger and better plans for us in store.
 
Yeah, it's just a dermatofibroma. (How's that for a name?!?!) Apparently, that's just some fancy-schmancy term for weird-ass bump. A search on the InterGoogle has lead me to a page that describes it as "like an iceberg" since there is more to see under the surface. Yummy!
 
In reality, it's a benign tumor growing on my stomach. However, if it gets any bigger, I've got to go back right away. In the meantime, I guess I just learn to live with this thing. Except sometimes I really just wish I could pop it like a giant zit. So far, that seems to be fruitless. It's not budging.
 
Stupid stubbon dermatofibroma-roach baby. Stubborn just like it's mama!
 
UPDATE: Since I wrote this draft, I talked to my dad about this dermatocrap-thingie and apparently he's had them too. First he gives me his janky baby toenails and then this. Geez, thanks Dad!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Sound Bite Sunday

I hate that in life, so many songs just seem to be about heartache or a bad break up. Or at least those seem to be the times when songs strike a chord and hit home. When I was a freshman/sophomore in college, I was in a pretty bad relationship. In hindsight, we just weren't good for each other, and I know he has matured and grown and gotten married and is expecting his second child. And I am happy for him. But that doesn't mean that, at the time, my 19 year old heart wasn't broken and torn apart, time and time again, when he cheated on me (to be fair, I cheated on him too) and when he ultimately left me for a girl who posted pictures of herself on the internet while only wearing a thong. (She kinda reminds me of The Slutasian!)
 
But during the summer of 2001, while working the most kickass internship ever, and meeting one of my best friends (Truck Stop Lizard - he gets a nickname because he asked politely), the band Journey released the album, "Arrival." And from one song to the next, it took me from songs of love to songs of break up to songs of renewed passion and joy for life. I know, without a doubt, I would not have gotten through that entire nasty relationship and subsequent depression, had it not been for that little piece of me who can latch on to other's words and see the meaning behind them. No, those words didn't come from someone in the church or a family member. No, the words that helped me heal came from a rock band. And for those of you who truly know me, you would never expect anything different.
 
To Be Alive Again by Journey (post Steve Perry)
 
Doin' time... where it takes you
You know it's time that can break you
We get caught in a moment...
Just steep walkin' most of our lives

In your mind (when you need it)
With a song (to help you believe it)
You can reinvent your world
Anytime you like

To be alive again...
Wakin' up from where you been
Younger now than you were then
You're comin' 'round again
Do you remember when...
Life was so much simpler then
Like summer nights that never end

To be alive again

Find the smile...
You've been missin'
There's someone that you could be kissin'
So open your eyes and you'll see
What's been there all along

Letting go (of your feelings)
With doubt and fear (you don't need it)
Break the chains on the heart of the soul
That's been waiting so long

To be alive again...
Wakin' up from where you been
Younger now than you were then
You're comin' 'round again
Do you remember when...
Life was so much simpler then
Like summer nights that never end

To be alive again

You're not among the walkin' wounded anymore
There's a time to fall
There's a time to rise above it all

To be alive again...
Wakin' up from where you been
Younger now than you were then
You're comin' 'round again
Do you remember when...
Life was so much simpler then
Like summer nights that never end

To be alive again

(The lines above that I bolded are some of the most poignant in all of music to me. Even though I'm happily married now, part of me will always hold on to that.)

Friday, November 19, 2010

Flash Bulb Friday!

 
 
5 years ago, I went on the trip of a lifetime.It was such a journey of self-discovery and enlightenment into what I want and need out of life, that I remember the place for what it was and what it taught me. In my mind, there is no place more magnificent, gorgeous, free, mesmerizing, mystical, enchanting, carefree, delightful, daring, challenging, mysterious and yet, like home, than New Zealand.
 
The memories I have of that trip abound and I frequently find myself chatting about the amazing places I saw. From the greenest rolling hills to the most pristine beaches to the most craggy & imposing mountain peaks to Milford Sound (look it up on the InterGoogle) every twist and turn brought me closer to peace. The thing that I remember most are the friendly and welcoming people. The Kiwis have the most amazing outlook on life. After spending two weeks there, among them, you can see how their life is inspired by their surroundings and you just, literally, never want to leave.
 
It's funny how I saw all those interesting places and sweeping vistas, yet this is the photo I chose to share. It was our second to last night in New Zealand. We had stopped in the most out of the way lodge one could find, on the shores of Lake Ohau. It's just a dot on the map... if it's even on a map. Standing on the patio, cocktail in hand, surrounded by new friends, I felt like I was experiencing a place that no one had ever seen before. The ripples on the lake seemed to be perfectly made by angel's wings. Mt. Cook stood looming in the distance as we watched the sunset. Yet, over on a picnic table, near the edge of the water, were these rocks. I'm not sure the story behind them... a bored drunkard playing with them over a beer or a child from earlier collecting them at the lake's edge and setting them out to dry, perhaps? But it just spoke to me, in some strange way, and I climbed up on top of the table, with my cheap, old point & shoot digital, and snapped one of my all-time favorite photos. Somehow, for some reason, this photo just embodied my experience there.
 
Deep in my heart, I know I will get back to this place again. Puff and I have decided it will be our 10 year wedding anniversary treat to ourselves. The prospect of it excites every piece of me. It will be so much better to experience it with someone who wants to be there and will enjoy every second of it. Puff will relish in the twists & turns of the mountain roads and I can just see him hiking trails and sipping water from glacial fed streams. And I just know we'll find a wide, empty field to tramp through and stand alone with our arms out-stretched, twirling to look in every direction to soak up some of God's best work. And hopefully, we can fall in love with not only New Zealand together, but maybe fall in love with each other all over again. The land of the Kiwi's has amazing powers.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Redecorating Redo



I thought I'd just let this be the week of redecorating here at My Choice, Not Chance!
Since I already posted about the baby stuff I'm researching when I'm bored, I figured I'd just continue it on with a little update on the visit we had from a realtor. A friend of a friend is a realtor, and much to the dismay of The MIL, she came over this past Saturday for a few hours to go over some things we could do to update the house and get it in shape to sell. We're still not 100% sure if selling will happen as soon as next year or perhaps not for another several years, but it's always good to get some input.

There was discussion of paint (the bathroom will become grey in the near future) and ceiling fans and such. But our biggest eyesore is our kitchen. The white cabinets are fine, but the plaid wallpaper is dated and the white countertop stains and scratches so easily. We had discussed putting up grass cloth wallpaper over the plaid and getting brownish-khakiish (wow, did I just create a new word?) granite countertops. The realtor, surprisingly enough, said she didn't think we needed to do granite. I never, in a million years, thought we could get what we hoped from our house without an updated kitchen. Regardless, we want to move forward with granite. Except... she gave us a great new idea!

Here is a picture of what she suggested to do instead of new wallpaper: bead board. I totally love it (since it sorta harkens back to the Nantucket Pottery Barn house I've always wanted) and supposedly it might be cheaper than new wallpaper. And we could go with a black granite counter instead, which would've been my preference all along. (I love black and white!)

So... I'm asking for feedback. You don't have to leave your name (you can post comments anonymously and without being members) and let me know what you think of the black counters with the white cabinets with the white bead board.

C'mon guys... it's time for reader participation day!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Tik, Tok

You know how people tell you that eventually, your biological clock will start ticking?
 
Well, I'm pretty sure mine starting to tick about 5 years ago. And loudly.
 
Cue one failed relationship plus one successful one plus one happy marriage and all that still equals no baby. But don't worry, we're hoping it won't be long. Sure, I still pop that little pill every morning, but eventually, we'll be weening off that and thrusting forward (and backward and forward) trying to conceive a little snuggly, adorable, giggly creature. (I still have time to convince Puff that it's the cool thing to do!)
 
So... cue a super boring (or rather, procrastination-filled) afternoon at work and what am I doing? Yup... I'm researching car seats and strollers and baby bedding. But c'mon... isn't it adorable?!?!
 
Product Image Sumersault Geo Brights 10 Piece Crib Set - Multicolor
 
It even matches the palm tree paintings that are currently in our guest room! Oh, our future baby girl is going to have a styling room! (Did I already mention on this blog how we totally plan to do our son's nursery to look like an Irish pub? Yeah, we're going to be awesome parents. How many babies do you know with beer signs in their nursery?!?! Don't judge; We're trendsetters.)
 
::sigh:: Can you even imagine me when we do finally get pregnant? We'll have everything we could ever need for the first 3 years of life by the time I'm 5 months pregnant! Hey - never hurts to be prepared!
 
Update: Since I first wrote this draft, I've since discovered the Crate & Barrel family website of http://www.landofnod.com/. Yup - dangerous! So, here are Killian and Kennedy's future bedding sets. (Insert winky face!)
 
 

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Sound Bite Sunday

Something a little different today. Instead of a song, just two quotes that were said between Puff and I yesterday. I refuse to give you the context, because somehow that just takes a bit of the fun out of it. Enjoy!

"Black people need dishwashers too!"

"Woah! Not so close to my butthole!"

:)

Saturday, November 13, 2010

It's Sexy Time

No, I don't normally post on Saturdays, but this story from the wonderful world of married life happened last night and it was too funny not to share...

Round about 9:45pm, we were cuddled on the couch with the lights now on and the blinds open. We had just finished watching an episode of CSI: we had taped. When I stood up off the couch, I walked over in front of Puff and turned around and did a quick sexy (yet totally silly at the same time) dance move and teased by pulling my pj bottoms down to reveal my panties.

Except when I turned my head around to see his reaction, I notice there is a car in front of our neighbor's house with the light on inside (so there's a person in it) with a straight sight-line to my little show!!!!

Oh - so when I run into the dark guest bedroom to peek out the window to see what's going on, I realize it's two COPS at our neighbor's house!

Well, you never can call me out for never doing anything nice for a man in uniform!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Flash Bulb Friday!


With Thanksgiving only two weeks away and lots of holiday madness starting just the week after that, I am getting into the holiday spirit! I've already got all my Christmas shopping done... no surprise there! So, this was a picture I took of some really amazingly awesome gigantic ornaments in New York City. Puff and I went there last December for a romantic long weekend. Less than 12 hours after I took this photo, we were engaged! 

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Craptastic!

How much crap is too much?
 
This past weekend, we moved Kimhead an hour and a half from us. It was bittersweet, for sure. She's advancing in her career and is back close to family in the city she really enjoys. It just sucks to have her not right up the road to meet for dinner after a hard day at work. The move entailed a completely packed 24' rental truck, plus our cars packed too... not to mention the trips she had already made in her car in the prior weeks.
 
I'm not going to pick on her too much (but yes, Kimhead, just a little bit) because I have been guilty of hanging on to things for the wrong reasons before as well. And you know what? It's her crap - so if she wants to keep it crammed in her closets or under her kitchen sink, then who am I to fault her for it? I'm still hanging on to a shirt I bought in Venice when I was 20 because I can't bear the thought of parting with it. Not to mention those satin "rhinestone cowboy" pants from high school that are in a bin in my closet. All that being said, I am definitely grateful that along with getting married & combining households came the sensibility of realizing that just because my grandma gave me something I don't like, doesn't mean I have to keep it. Or that one doesn't need 5 sets of silverware. And if you haven't worn something or used something in over a year, that perhaps, you aren't EVER going to use it or wear it again!
 
Yet, while I pick on Kimhead about keeping 100 plastic forks and unopened packages of drink umbrellas in her pantry, I am the one with an attic full of boxes and knick-knacks at my Grandma's house. In fairness, I haven't been moving it all around the country with me each time I move though! And every time I watch "Hoarders" or help someone move or hear of someone redecorating their house, I get that pang in my stomach of the guilt and disgust of having so much crap. Yes, at my age, I have too much crap. It just so happens that some of it has been boxed up since my sophomore year of high school, more boxed since 2000, and yet, even more boxed in late 2004ish. Pretty sure if I haven't needed or wanted it yet - I'm not going to need 50 sets of salt & pepper shakers or a backpack from Planet Hollywood.
 
My dad had a great idea once upon a time - A Memory Box. However, his idea of a memory box exploded into the idea that keeping every single Barbie shoe or McDonalds Happy Meal toy was somehow going to be worth the storage space and the time to sort through it all later in life. I had a yard sale a few years back, and the only thing I mildly regret is that I think I sold some childhood books that would have been great to keep for my own future children. In reality, with the sets of grandparents that our kids are going to inherit, they're never going to want for anything in their entire lives, so gifting my future daughter with a hand-me-down Hungry, Hungry Hippos game probably isn't necessary.
 
So, what do I do with it? Well, I sell it. Or at least some of it. I had started Memory Boxes last Christmas when I was in The Fort and intend to work on some of that again this next trip home. What goes in a Memory Box? My grandmother's copy of "A Profile in Courage" and ticket stubs from concerts I went to as a child. Perhaps even that plastic Smurf cup I used as a child when I visited my grandma or my favorite bean-baby doll that I got for my first Christmas. What can be sold? Well... that collection of salt & pepper shakers I mentioned, for example, is a good starting point. And nautical knick-knacks accumulated through college. And there are definitely some books and some blankets and some games and some toys that can go too.
 
However... those "vintage" toys yield a bit of an issue. Do I try to sell them at a yard sale (which is tentatively happening in July 2011 - stay tuned for details!) or do I put them on http://www.etsy.com/ or try Ebay or Craigslist? There are certainly some people out there who would jump at that Bernstein Bears unopened Happy Meal toy or that mint condition Barbie or those Fisher Price Little People that were small enough to choke on. Any insight is welcome. I think a bit of research is needed to make an informed decision.
 
In the meantime, while I go through a mental list of what I can toss versus keep from my grandma's attic, I surely hope that Kimhead is planning my next meal for when I visit. I told her I want her to make sure she uses all that crap she wouldn't part with - tiny crock pots, a gigantic roasting pan and asparagus cooker, and yes, I expect a tiny drink umbrella in everything as well.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Sweet, Sweet Loving

Last night, Puff and I met with a rep from a life insurance company to discuss changing the policies I already have, getting one for him, and also got some financial planning information on IRAs. We are so super old! Anyway, we had the meeting at a local Starbucks. Each of us had our drinks (tall hot chocolate with no whipped cream for me - although it came with whipped cream. Really, is it that difficult?!?!) but as we passed the hour mark of sitting there, the guy behind the counter brought us each a donut in a bag. (Yes, they were probably otherwise destined for the trash.)

So... each of the others ate their donut right away, but I wasn't feeling it, so I brought it home with me. Not long after we got home, there was nothing on TV, so we were laying in bed kissing on each other. (Sorry for any mental image there.) Then this happened....

Kiss, Kiss, Kiss

Puff: What are you going to do with that donut?

Kiss, Kiss, Kiss

Me: Is this supposed to be sexy talk?

Kiss

Riotous laughter

Being married is awesome :)

Monday, November 8, 2010

Dream Weaver

I am a borderline insomniac.
 
Thankfully, I have resisted the need to use a sleep aid. So far at least. My dear almost-80 year old grandmother sleeps probably 3 hours a night. Pardon me for a minute while I go pray that it's not genetic.
 
I was recently reading one of my favorite bloggers and she was discussing the crazy-ass dreams she has while taking the medication, Cymbalta. She was talking about running from things and spiders falling in her bed and lots of other random things. And it occurred to me... I don't even NEED drugs to have dreams that are crazier than that! Could you imagine me on drugs?!?!
 
It would be wise of me to start a dream journal, where I document each morning the ridiculousness that happens in my head each night. Really, it's no surprise I never feel well-rested. My imagination is on over-drive almost every night. And people wonder why I have to force myself to focus on redecorating my house in order to even fall asleep. Could you imagine the things I would be thinking about if not? It would probably range from freaking out about work to thinking about what to pack for my trip to Europe next summer to wondering why there aren't pink elephants in the wild.
 
Oh, yes, but those dreams. Sometimes they're seemingly mundane, like my best friend and I becoming cheerleaders. But they go into such detail... right down to the ghetto neighborhood store we had to frequent to buy our new cheerleading outfits and how Miss wouldn't take off her sweatpants under her cheerleader skirt and then we tried to buy Carolina Gamecock hoodies but the Gamecock wasn't the real logo because there was pink and green on it and almost every sweatshirt in the place had rainbow stripes down the sleeves.
 
Personal favorites from over the years include the cast of Full House murdering my pet collie or the tap dancing penguins in top hats dancing through fire. Or the time that traffic got backed up on the highway because there was a bright blue three-headed turtle on the middle of a bridge. Or that underwater tiger I was desperately trying to swim away from. Maybe it was a lion? Or that time Robbie Williams and I were running from the police and after running down hills and through creeks, he managed to disappear up an embankment just leaving watery footprints. The morning after that dream, I even remembered the license plate number on our getaway car. And I had one recently where Puff left me in the middle of the night to go visit The Slutasian because she had emailed all her friends that she was super sick and dying but turned out she was just on her period.
 
Maybe if I got back to writing creatively, I could channel some of this vivid imagination and then maybe, just maybe, I could know what it felt like to have a restful night's sleep. One can only wish.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Sound Bite Sunday

I posted once before a "theme song" to life by the band Trapt. That's technically my second theme song, since this one came first. Yes, I admit to liking cheesy soft-pop-rock bands sometimes, and Matchbox Twenty is one of my all-time faves. (Although my step-mom is the fanatic who chases Rob Thomas all across the country!) So, here's too all of us who are little different and a little crazy... and always unwell.
 
Unwell by Matchbox Twenty
 
All day
Staring at the ceiling
Making friends with shadows on my wall
All night
Hearing voices telling me
That I should get some sleep
Because tomorrow might be good for something
Hold on
I'm feeling like I'm headed for a
Breakdown
I don't know why
I'm not crazy, I'm just a little unwell
I know, right now you can't tell
But stay awhile and maybe then you'll see
A different side of me
I'm not crazy, I'm just a little impaired
I know, right now you don't care
But soon enough you're gonna think of me
And how I used to be
Me
Talking to myself in public
Dodging glances on the train
I know
I know they've all been talking 'bout me
I can hear them whisper
And it makes me think there must be something wrong
With me
Out of all the hours thinking
Somehow
I've lost my mind
I'm not crazy, I'm just a little unwell
I know, right now you can't tell
But stay awhile and maybe then you'll see
A different side of me
I'm not crazy, I'm just a little impaired
I know right now you don't care
But soon enough you're gonna think of me
And how I used to be
I been talking in my sleep
Pretty soon they'll come to get me
Yeah, they're taking me away
I'm not crazy, I'm just a little unwell
I know, right now you can't tell
But stay awhile and maybe then you'll see
A different side of me
I'm not crazy I'm just a little impaired
I know, right now you don't care
But soon enough you're gonna think of me
And how I used to be
Hey, how I used to be
How I used to be, yeah
Well I'm just a little unwell
How I used to be
How I used to be

Friday, November 5, 2010

Flashbulb Friday!

Life has been keeping a sista down lately! Between having only 1 real day off the entire month of October, coupled with the mental drain of a visit from The MIL, I think it all caught up to me yesterday... while working day 11 of 12 straight. I came home sick at lunch feeling feverish, which ultimately dissipated and transformed into a horrific sinus headache. With all of this behind me (and Kimhead's move looming ahead of me this weekend) I am trying to find a happy place. And that happy place keeps landing on that trip to the Caribbean that I took this week, two years ago.

While this isn't necessarily the best or most interesting photo I've ever taken, I will never forget the peace of the moment when we were leaving St. Lucia and this rainbow appeared. It's no wonder St. Lucia is, by far, my favorite place in the Caribbean. Such great memories. Maybe I'll get to go back one day soon.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Birthday Surprises

So yesterday was Puff's 33rd birthday. He's such an old man!
 
I had gotten him expensive race tickets (refer to the earlier entry about Le Mans) for his birthday gift, but that seemed like such a long time ago, that I thought he needed something else special on his actual birthday. We had dinner at a nice steak restaurant in town that we had never been to before. He got to pick his actual cut of ribeye off a giant hunk of meat they brought table-side. We sat and ate a quiet dinner in the candlelight while looking out into the trees. So romantic!
 
But I had bigger things up my sleeve. A few months ago, we were watching Ace of Cakes and I asked Puff about what kind of cool birthday cakes he had as a kid. I remembered mine: Care Bears, Rainbow Brite, Cabbage Patch, a football, even a record that said "New Kids on the Block" on it. My parents were rock stars when it came to cool cakes. So, when Puff informed me that he NEVER had a cool cake as a child, it literally broke my heart. And I vowed that birthday 33 was going to include a cool, fun, childish cake. So... he got a Scooby Doo cake. Complete with his name on it! Oh - and an actual Mystery Van that has real wheels, so he can play with it later! I am so the best wife ever.
 
On top of that, I had found a woman on http://www.etsy.com/ (no surprise) who had these awesome prints of sayings. Well, I inquired about a custom print and she was more than happy to oblige. Even after hearing what I wanted to say, she just laughed and sent it to me immediately. There's a long story behind it (so don't be offended) but it's going to hang on our bedroom wall, next to Puff's shiny vase and fake sticks, under another print that is the "Choice, Not Chance, Determines Destiny" that is my blog photo. Sometimes, you just need a little whimsy in your life. And I think this print does the trick. Happy birthday, baby. I hope you had a wonderfully memorable day!
 
 

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Married Talk

In celebration of my dear husband's birthday today, a wonderful moment from the conversations of married people:
 
Driving home from the grocery store one night...
 
Puff: When we get home, will you look at this thing on my neck? I think it was a bug bite that turned into a pimple.
 
Me: I don't think bug bites can turn into pimples.
 
Puff: Sure they can. It's pretty awesome.
 
Me: As awesome as the mysterious bump on my stomach that appeared out of no where?
 
Puff: Is it a bug bite?
 
Me: Nah... maybe it's a cyst?
 
Puff: It's a zit.
 
Me: No... a roach crawled on me in the middle of the night and laid her eggs under my skin.
 
Puff: So you might have roach babies?
 
Me: Yup... one day it's just going to open up and tons of little baby roaches are going to crawl out of my stomach, like I'm giving birth to them!
 
Puff: We should video tape it. It's around Halloween and that would be cool.
 
Me: Screw video taping it for Halloween. We'd sell that shit to the Today Show and they'd fly us to New York for an interview!
 
Puff: I like New York. (pause) Sounds like a plan.
 
We'll keep you posted on the due date for our roach babies!

Monday, November 1, 2010

I'm not Fearless


There are 3 things in this world that terrify me more than anything else:

1) Pigs. They will fool you with their cute noses and oinks. Then, they will eat you. Every last bit of you. And a CSI team will have to pick bone fragments out of pig poo to piece you back together for identification.

2) Revolving Doors. They fool you into thinking they're fun and functional. Yet, when you run into the glass in one, or get trapped inside of one on a cruise ship, the enemies have won.

3) Porta-Potties. Really? Do I need to even explain why? WHAT IF SOMEONE THINKS IT'S FUNNY TO PUSH IT OVER AND YOU GET COVERED IN POOP?

Ah yes, so there are my deepest darkest fears revealed. However, on top of "fears" there are also things that just kinda give me the "heebie-jeebies." Ya know, things like palmetto bugs (cockroaches) and snakes and washcloths.

Yup. Washcloths.

The funny thing about that is that we have an over-abundance of them in our linen closet. This is for two reasons: 1) Puff uses them on occasion to apply a topical medicine and 2) Whenever you mention to Granny that you don't have any washcloths, you will get 20 of them for Christmas. But clean, nicely folded cloths in my linen closet don't worry me. It's the USED ones that freak me out. Namely, ones used by other people outside of me and Puff.

Cue a visit from The MIL this past weekend. (The visit probably warrants a rant in and of itself, but I'll refrain from throwing anyone in particular under the bus today and just say that I did my very best to not ask her if I should go find her tiara and sash to crown her top "Drama Queen.") I had to work both Saturday and Sunday mornings, so I was out of the house on Saturday before she even got out of bed. Then Sunday morning happened. I had to be to work before 8am, so I was up at the crack of dawn (OK, so there wasn't even a crack yet... it was still pitch black outside) and stumbled into the bathroom in a sleepy stupor. I brushed my teeth. I peed. Then I went to get in the shower. And there it was. A dirty pink washcloth, hanging limp over the side of the tub, right where I pull back the curtain to step inside. And I know it doesn't belong to me. And it doesn't belong to Puff.

I went back into the bedroom and told Puff he had to deal with it. I'm not touching that thing. Ewwww!!!!
So, he slides out of bed, mumbles his unhappiness, and just picks up the thing like it's nothing, wads it up in his hand, and throws it in his dirty laundry pile. Dude... you probably just got old lady vagina & butt juice on your hand.

Really... that should bother him. Pardon me while I go and dry heave over a trash can.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Sound Bite Sunday

Every once and awhile, a song comes along that just speaks to you. When I first heard this song, I was driving along I-75 North heading home, on a trip minus The Ex. I'm not sure how long we had been dating but there had been discussions of a marriage and children. However, when I heard this song, I just knew something wasn't right with us. I was rushing to slow down. And while our relationship would go on for at least a year or more after I heard this song, I just never could get it out of my head. On that drive along I-75 that day, I kept hitting "replay" and listened to the song at least 10 times in a row, learning almost all the lyrics in rural Kentucky. I still rush to slow down sometimes, but I'm happy to know that when it comes to the big, important decisions in my life, I don't act that way much anymore. However, I still consider this my theme song.
 
Lost Realist by Trapt
 
My independence is calling my name
A doubtful voice divides my faith
My independence only hesitates
An unsure choice I can't embrace
You're gonna have to carve me,
Carve me from stone
Right to the bone or
I'll end up alone
Playing the role
Of someone in control

Why do I rush to slow down
Why do I rush to slow down everything
Why do I rush to slow down
Why do I rush to slow down everything

Will the dice ever roll
When will I ever know
Will the plot ever twist
Or will I still resist
I've been playing the part of a lost realist

My indepednce is turning the page
Tomorrow comes we start to fade
My independence only complicates
It's not enough to meet half way

You'll have to carve me
Carve me from stone
Right to the bone
Or I'll end up alone
Playing the role
Of someone in control

Why do I rush to slow down
Why do I rush to slow down everything
Why do I rush to slow down
Why do I rush to slow down everything

Will the dice ever roll
When will I ever know
Will the plot ever twist
Or will I still resist
I've been playing the part of a lost realist

I only keep what I give away
I only keep what I give away

Why do I rush to slow down
Why do I rush to slow down everything
Why do I rush to slow down
Why do I rush to slow down
Everything

Will the dice ever roll
When will I ever know
Will the plot ever twist
Or will I still resist
I've been playing the part of a lost realist

Why do I rush to slow down
Why do I rush to slow down everything
Why do I rush to slow down

Friday, October 29, 2010

Flashbulb Friday!



 
 
In the spirit of Halloween in a few days, I thought I would post the closest photo I've got to something "Halloween-ish." I absolutely love to photograph old cemeteries. They draw me in with their mystery and charm. One of my all-time favorites is at the Episcopal Church on St. Simon's Island, Georgia. There is no place more tranquil on earth to me than the north end of that island. I actually have branded myself for life with a tattoo that reminds me of there and the calmness it brings to my otherwise chaotic life. This photo was taken on a June 2008 girl's trip that couldn't have come at a more perfect time.
 
I find such beauty in the sadness of this place.  

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Yup - Still hate people

I recently posted about the epic struggle with soccer mom van-drivers who parked in our yard until we corralled them out. Well, their demon spawn have now become the problem.
 
Puff woke up having night terrors that kept us both awake one recent evening, thinking about ways to electrocute the bastards. Unfortunately, I have made him see the error of his ways and prompted him to not get arrested. (Selfish reasons, really... I still need his sperm.)
 
The basic gist of the whole conundrum is that now there are other kids whose demonic mothers don't love them enough to arrive ON TIME to pick them up from school, so the kids are forced to hang on the curb. Sometimes for up to an hour. Oh, but that curb just isn't enough enticement for their short attention spans. Nope. Cue the running through our yard, wrestling in our yard, wielding sticks at each other from our yard, climbing in the tree in our yard, and trampling through our plants in our yard. Cue my email to the principal of the school. Cue his jackass response saying they can't do anything.
 
WHAT THE FUCK?!? Yes... you can do something. You can send your sorry-ass SRO to the corner in front of our house and find out who these kids are and send letters home to their parents. The alternative? I contact the school board and inform them that you are doing nothing to help prevent the damage of personal property by your students. Students who are NOT EVEN ALLOWED to walk off campus to hitch a ride home. That's what a car line is for. And you can bet I'm saving every emailed response from the school so that when Johnny Dumbshit falls out of our tree and breaks his arm and tries to sue us, that I can be sure to point out that we tried to PREVENT this by getting the school involved and they didn't give a shit.
 
Cue the most exasperated and desperate sigh EVER!
 
It's moments like this when it's hard not to jump to conclusions and immediately start researching homes for sale in the neighborhood, contacting realtors to get their input on necessary home improvements to sell The Bungalow, and getting finances in order to move. After several recent hours (following the terse response from the middle school principal) that is what I spend my time doing. And after a few hours, I took another giant sigh and realized we're being ridiculous. The kids are just being kids and the reality is that they're not damaging as much as we probably thought. Not enough to pack up and move years before we had planned. We are just starting to make the house feel like a HOME, and we can't just throw that away for thousands of dollars in realtor fees and closing costs and moving trucks.
 
So the plan moving forward from today is to see if the school SRO follows up on an email we sent. If that doesn't pan out, we contact the school board so they know what is happening. And then, sometime next week, I am going to leave work early to come home to put on my best Suzy Homemaker impersonation and go kill those kids with kindness on the curb (perhaps wielding Halloween candy) and try to just talk to them and ask them to stop. And if that all doesn't work out, then we might just be installing an electric fence around the perimeter of our property to keep out the vermin.
 
It's pretty sad when REAL vermin would be easier to deal with!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Home, Sweet Home

It's funny how when you get married and are forced to start meshing not only your lives, but your STUFF, how your taste can suddenly change.
 
Puff had bought The Bungalow in 2005 and I made my grand entrance in July 2009. In the 15 months since I've lived here, we've done quite a lot: New roof, new office ceiling, new office paint, two closets redone & expanded, new bathroom plumbing, and our rusty shed was painted. Not to mention lots and lots of flowers planted around outside. But since we've gotten married, it's become time for me to officially put my stamp on the place and turn it from a bachelor pad, to a home where we can welcome a baby in a few years. (Although, I must say, he had the BEST bachelor pad that I've ever seen... so I had a good base to work with!)
 
Growing up, we always lived in brand-new, custom-designed homes. My parents liked modern furniture and modern things, so I inherited their taste. My apartments over the years have been full of black and silver furniture, lots of glass, and everything new and stream-lined. However, for years, I dreamt of having a "nautical house" so I collected everything I could find... sailboats, lighthouses, buoys, lanterns. Eventually, my "nautical house" in my head morphed into more of a "Pottery Barn Nantucket house" and I still liked those nautical touches, just more subdued, with khaki and pale blue walls dancing in my dreams. Cue The Bungalow. Not a khaki or pale blue wall in sight. Mustard yellow and cranberry walls... plus plaid wallpaper in the kitchen. Not to mention antiques and family heirlooms he wasn't willing to part with. Antiques? Such a foreign concept in my world!
 
But somehow, it's all working. And quite nicely, I must say. Yes, we have a modern glass & nickel table in the dining room and I have a "Pottery Barn Nantucket" lighthouse in our bedroom and seagull in the guest room, but we're working in harmony with the antique table & desk in the office and that plaid wallpaper. Since the wedding, we've been focusing on the master bedroom... new, grown-up furniture from Haverty's, in a dark wood to compliment everything else, yet paired with white nightstands from Ikea. Our World Market bookshelves are filling up with photo albums and travel books and collectibles from our honeymoon. And I've discovered http://www.etsy.com/, along with http://www.cb2.com/, which have become inspiration to find those final touches we desperately need.
 
While it's still a work in progress... we still have no art in the master bedroom and we need to replace the nightstand in the guest room... I'm pretty happy with what we've accomplished so far. Sometimes, it's the small details that make me the happiest.
 
 Puff's nightstand. There's typically a framed photo of us there too.
 
 
 
Our new print we got from Etsy to hang in the kitchen. (Puff loves cars, and it matched the plaid!)
 
 
 
A serving platter that was a wedding gift from my ad agency, paired with Pier One candles, and rocks from CB2 don the table in our office.
(And NO KIMHEAD, you are not allowed to come and rearrange my rocks! That took me 10 minutes to get them right!)
 
 
 
My comfy, yet ugly, office chair was replaced with an antique dining chair and funky cushion from World Market.