Friday, April 29, 2011

Alphabet Tag

Attached or single? Attached. To my cat.
Best friend? Kristin.
Cake or Pie? Ummm…why is this a question. Cake AND Pie. Duh.
Day of Choice? Thursday
Essential Item? My own pillow- I have to take it with me whenever I’m sleeping away from home, even at a nice hotel with big fluffy pillows with handy labels “soft” and “firm”
Favorite color? Blue. And green. And yellow. And purple.
Gummy bears or worms? Worms- I like to jiggle them and bite off their heads, but then since they’re worms, pretend they’re still alive and have conversations like “Ha! You almost got me, but I am awesome, and I LIVE!!” and then I bite off their other head and laugh. I am troubled.
Hometown? Elgin.
Indulgence? Chocolate. And fresh fruit. I would pay a lot of money for fresh fruit, especially in like March when all I’ve seen for months in the produce department is apples and oranges and bananas. This is why I bought 10 kiwiw, 7 mangoes, a box of strawberries, and a pint of blueberries last week. And then ate them all in one day.
January or July? July, it’s my birthday and the BEST holiday EVER (Fourth of July, not by birthday)
Kids? No thanks. I have enough. (Actually I stole that answer from another blogger, but I’m leaving it, because while I have none of my own- I do have enough kids, and I don’t really want anymore.) (All of my kids are students. I have no actual kids.)
Life isn't complete.... until you’ve scratched some things off the ole bucket list (see mine on the page labeled “life list” because why make a list about what you want to do with life, about death).
Marriage Date? September 27, 2025.
Number of Brothers and Sisters? One brother. One sister-in-law whom I like better than the brother.
Oranges or Apples? I think I already established my fruit preferences.
Phobias? Running out of good quality literature.
Quote? We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. (If you don’t know what that’s from- I quit.)
Reasons to Smile? Life is awesome, even when it’s not.
Season of Choice? Ms. Dash Table Blend. LOVE IT! Also, fresh basil or chives in the summer.
Tag Seven People? No.
Unknown Fact? I’m secretly shy. That isn’t so much of an unknown fact, as I keep trying to tell people, but no one believes me, so it’s an “unbelieved fact”.
Vegetable? As of this second- grilled zucchini with onions, salt and pepper.
Worst habits? Biting my nails, and an inability to stop thinking about food.
XRay or Ultrasound? Never had either actually. I had my very first ever antibiotic in the fall of 2009 (when I was 27), although I think I need some more right now (minor infection of the gum/tooth)
Your favorite food? I pretty much like everything actually. I especially like new foods, or exotic foods.
Zodiac sign? I used to be a cancer. I don’t know what I am since they changed them, nor do I care.

Falafel (and Day 16)

Today I went out for lunch. This is something we do ALL the time at my work. Someone decides to go out, and takes orders from everyone, then they go get lunch. It usually takes 12-15 minutes depending on where you're going and who all ordered. Yesterday I got all kids of mad because the girl who went out was gone for 30 minutes getting Wendy's (yes, my diet lost to Wendy's this week-sad!). But then today I went to a new Middle Eastern place. My boss had been, and knew I was going (in fact she ordered a sandwich). She said nothing about how long it might take. I was gone FORTY-FIVE minutes!!! It's a two minutes drive from my work. On the other hand, the food was FANTASTIC and the reason it took so long was the man made everything right there while I watched. Between my co-workers, I ordered a falafel sandwich, 2 kabob sandwiches, 2 falafel appetizers, and 2 drinks. While I waited, the man gave me a piece of falafel to munch on, he "accidentally" made us an extra falafel sandwhich he just threw in for free, and instead of 4 falafel patties on teh appetizers, he gave us 5 (each). That makes a total of 6 free falafel patties, plus all the stuff on the sandwhich (pita, tahini, veggies, etc). Plus, the total was less than $20. So- if you live in my town, you should probably go there. It's called Babylon Kabob and it's in the little shopping center on 58 with the Little Ceasar's across the street from 7-11 and Jewel.
30 Days of Song- Day 16
A song I used to love, but now I hate- I used to love the song "15 Minutes of Shame" by Kristy Lee Cook, but now I'm bored by it. I think the problem is that it's like the first song on my mp3 player, so I hear it everytime I turn the thing on, plus it's the first song on my favorite mix CD so I hear it everytime I put that on, and I've just heard it to much lately. I imagine I'll like it again after I haven't heard it in awhile.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

30 Days of Song- Day 15

Day 15. Song that describes you- Fighter, Christina Aquilera.

Alternatively “Not Pretty Enough" by Kasey Chambers

...And now you know everything there is to know about me :)

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

30 Days of Song

Day 14. Song that no one would expect you to love- Kristin was SHOCKED when she discovered Neil Diamond on my mp3 player, I’m not sure why, but she didn’t think I would like him. Since she knows me best, I’m gonna have to say, if it surprised her, no one would expect me to like it (everyone knows what I love). Other than that, people are fairly surprised to find out I enjoy Christian music. I do enjoy both the hymns and the popular stuff, and I especially enjoy Apologetix which is a Christian parody band.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Comcast Sports Hates Me

I love hockey. It's the only sport I truly watching. So I got all excited on Sunday when the Blackhawks won their game, meaning they got a game seven chance to go on in the playoffs. So I settled down tonight to watch it, ad had to sit through 45 minutes of the Bulls/Pacers game first because Comcast Sports decided to show the end of that and then go to the "Blackhawks game already in progess". I missed the first score (but, since I'm writing this during a commercial and the score is currently 0-1, let's hope it was the only Canuck's only score of the game).

30 Days of Song

Day 13. Song that is a guilty pleasure- I secretly like a few Britney Spears songs, from back before the meltdown- (You Drive Me) Crazy, Stronger, Lucky, you know the bubble gum years songs. Also, I HATE that I like the song “Girlfriend” by Avril Levigne. She states flat out in the song that there’s nothing really wrong with the girlfriend, yet she’s encouraging some boy to break up with another girl and date her instead. But it’s so catchy that I can’t help but sing along! ANNOYING!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Book Club (and 30 Days of Song)

Tonight was book club night, which was great because I really needed some time with my friends. And although, I define the word "friend" more strictly than most people, I do have some friends that I really only see at book club. I didn't finish the book, although I will by the end of tomorrow night. Next week I'm leading the discussion on "Mansfield Park" at my Jane Austen Fan Club (totally different than book club-honest) so I prioritized that over book club's Band of Brothers. It turned out okay. Although my book club has a strict policy of discussing the book during book club, it's not a great book for discussion. You can't really ask something like "Artillery fire on fox holes- for or against?" and the book was really focused on broad sweeps of factual information, no more detailed than a grade schooler's social studies text. Sad!
30 Days of Song
Day 12. A song by a band you hate- yeah, sorry to punk out on this one, but I don't listen to music I don't like, so I literally don't know anything to put here.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

30 Days of Song- Day 11 (Also- Easter)

Day 11. Song from your favorite band- I don’t really have a favorite band, so I looked at the artist stats on my Windows Media Player. Toby Keith wins the contest of “artist who has the most minutes of music on my computer” so that’s who I picked a song from for today. Toby has a lot of pretty good ballady songs, and once I started writing a screenplay for a rom-com that could use only Toby Keith songs for the soundtrack. Pretty early on the hero was to realize he was falling in love with the heroine during a scene in which the song “You Shouldn’t Kiss Me Like This” played. That is today’s song.

Also, I hope you had a nice Easter. I did. I spent the morning in church (I love Easter service), the afternoon with my best friend's extended family (running joke on holidays at this point- "She should just change her name at this point, we see her often enough"). When I got home, it was to a second Easter dinner with my family, my mom's boyfriend and his daughter, and a few of the boyfriend's friends. Also, my mom asked me what I think of the boyfriend. This would make me think she' pretty serious about the guy, except I already knew that because she almost never comes home from his place.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

30 Days of Song- Days 9 & 10

Sorry, I didn't have a chance to do this yesterday :(
Day 9. A song you can dance to- "Stop! In The Name of Love" by Diana Ross and the Supremes. This is on my "safe for work dance mix" and my kids love it. When I was in high school choir, the senior girls always sang a song together at our last concert of the year. The year I graduated, this was the song that we did, so now I know like an entier choreography for it. Of course it's nearly impossible to get a Youtube video of the real thing now that Glee! did it (I only know that because of all the Glee! videos I had to sort through to get this one), but I did get it for you.

Day 10. A song that makes you fall asleep- assuming this means something that relaxes me not something that bores me, Vivaldi’s Four Seasons, especially the Autumn Movement

Thursday, April 21, 2011

30 Days of Song Day Eight

Day 8. A song you know all the words to- Yeah, see this is another tricky one, because I love to sing and I don't really like songs until I can sing along to them. So pretty much, every one of the 248 songs on my mp3 player. I guess I'll pick another favorite song here, and that song is..."Jar of Hearts" by Christina Perri. I first heard this song a few weeks ago when my friend (who's name I'm not going to write, since her name was one of the biggest items on my Wordle- but she knows who she is) posted the lyrics on her blog. I love the music for this song, it's just so amazing, and the lyrics are fantastic.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Kittens, Shivs, and Songs

I want a kitten. Except last time I had a kitten my grown up cat beat her up and bossed her around, and then the kitten peed on the floor. Alot. The thing is, maybe that kitten peed on the floor because she was like a year old when we got her, and she and Buffi were battling for dominance, and also the kitten had been a stray for a year, and in the wild cats pee on the floor, so she might not have known any better. So, I still want a kitten. But my mom said no, in case it pees on our new carpets. Also, I just asked Buffi about it and she just gave me this look, like "Lady, we are not getting a kitten. Be happy I didn't shiv the dog when he was a puppy." (My cat is kind of mean).
30 Days of Song!
Day 7. Song that reminds you of a certain event- Driving to cemetery to bury my best friend and mentor, the song “Homesick” by MercyMe came on the radio. It was the first time I heard it, and every time I hear it I think of that friend and that funeral.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

30 Days of Song- Day Six

Day 6. Song that reminds you of somewhere- “Ready, Set, Don’t Go” by Billy Ray and Miley Cyrus, this had just come out when I went to DC before, and it literally came on the radio like 47 times on the car ride there. My friend was completely sick of it by then, so we changed the station every time, but every time I hear it now, I think of that road trip.
The other thing I think about when I hear this song is my dad. That trip was just weeks before my dad died (both happened in March of 2008). It was my penultimate year of college, I was supposed to go on my first international trip that summer (I didn't go), and I was graduating the next year. Other than myself, the person my graduation was most important to, was my dad, so this song kind of reminds me of my dad too (especially because it's a father and daughter singing).

Monday, April 18, 2011

Ever Wonder What My Blog Is About?

Well wonder no more. Just check out this wordle I made today.

Now go make one of your very own!!

I Believe (Also 30 Days of Song)

A friend of mine wrote about what s/he believes (I’m under orders to protect identity in this case, so be aware of odd grammar in the next few sentences!). This person wrote that s/he hates his/her believes because s/he has been teased for them, but what this person wrote made me think about what I believe. We don’t have much in common when it comes to believes, this other person and I, but I appreciated the chance to think through what I believe.

  • I believe that our culture has become far too casual. I believe that a certain amount of polite formality would help us as a group. That’s not to say that we should be formal with our friends, but I don’t believe that I’m friends with someone just because I know that person’s name. It shouldn’t be weird when I call the parents at my work by their titles (Mr. Parent, Mrs. Parent…).

  • I believe it takes years to form a solid friendship, and that friendship (like any relationship) requires work on the part of both parties.

  • I believe that friendly love (philo) is just as important as the other kinds (romantic and passionate).

  • I believe, assuming the existence of a God who created us, and who loves us, He wants us to use the abilities He gave us. That includes being able to form reasonable conclusions about the world around us, whether those conclusions draw us closer to Him or not. That’s why we have free will, to make decisions based on all the evidence we can gather.

  • I don’t believe in using credit for stupid things. Credit should be earned and used for big things that the general public couldn’t afford all at once (college education, cars, houses, etc). I do believe that people should use credit reasonably- if you have to use credit to buy a car, you probably don’t need the fanciest car you can find, you need one that satisfies your NEEDS not your WANTS.

  • I believe most Americans do not know the difference between a need and a want. I don’t go so far as to say the only things you need are food, shelter and water, but I do think there’s a big difference between needing a car to get to work to provide those things and “needing” a Hummer to travel the perfectly travelable roads found in most of the country so that you aren’t uncomfortable in any way.

  • I believe in being kind to everyone. It doesn’t cost anything to be nice, and honestly it makes you feel better.

  • I believe in education. It bothers me when people are willfully ignorant on important matters, especially the things that affect us all on a daily basis.

  • I believe that we can and must all respect each other, whether we agree about our believes or not. I’m not saying we have to pretend to agree, I’m saying that as long as one person’s belief is not endangering another person, we need to be able to RESPECTFULLY disagree.

  • I believe…some other stuff that I can’t think of right now, so I can’t write it down.

30 Days of Song!!

Day 5. Song that reminds you of someone- I don’t just love music, I love musicals. I’ve blogged before about what the song “For Good” means to me. When I saw this item on the list, this is the only song I could think about- it makes me think of both my good friends now (especially Kristin) and in the past (especially Marissa). I’m not going to post the video again here, but if you want to see it, you can follow the link!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

New Plan!

I want to lose some weight. Although it might be better if I waited until after my friend’s wedding as my dress fits me now, I don’t care. I want the weight gone by the time I leave on vacation, or at least a good amount of it, and that means I have to start now, not in two months.
I made a good start today, by deciding to do something about it. Also by buying the stuff for good healthful salads for work lunches. Because if I have something yummy, I won’t be tempted by the Wendy’s five blocks away right? I also picked up some good fruit for snacks and side dishes, and a few potatoes (because if there are no carbs to go with my salads, I will fall to Wendy’s in less than three days) to bake and eat with that butter flavored yogurt I like. All that plus the yogurt I already eat for most snacks, some multi-grain cereal for breakfast, a shiny new water bottle to encourage water drinking, and some 100% juice for when water gets boring, and I spent a lot of money on this crazy scheme. So that “solves” the whole “eat healthier and reduce your caloric intake” part of weight lose.
The hard part for me is the “exercise and increase your caloric output” part. I have a hard time finding the motivation to workout. I don’t take workout classes because they’re expensive, and I get self conscious in the classroom with strangers. Sometimes I take the dog for walks, which I’m only motivated to do because I can listen to my mp3 player, but I want to do more. The dog is just excited to go for a walk, but he can’t make me walk longer or faster. I have some workout DVDs that I used to do sometimes, but I got bored alone in the basement jiggling my body along to whatever tiny little person was on my TV. Plus those people freak me out, because they’re tiny and can do scary things with their bodies that I can NOT do, and then I feel like an idiot for thinking I can, and then I run away from the TV in shame. But, I only run as far as my bed (which is where I my nightstand with the Oreos in it is), so that’s not very helpful.
So, what I need from you is twofold (after you laugh at me). I need some ideas for how to eat healthier, but cheaply and without getting bored. Boredom --> Wendy’s. I also need some thoughts on workouts that I’ll be motivated to do without having to stare at my jiggly bits in the mirror for 20 minutes first.

30 Days of Song- Days 3-4

I’m posting yesterday’s post a little late because I was out with a friend literally all day. We met at 11:15 for brunch with her family, then we did some shopping and crafting for another friend’s wedding shower, and now it’s 12:30 tomorrow morning. So I’m posting days 2 and 3 at the same time.

Day 3. A song that makes me happy- When I was in high school my boyfriend had a slot on a radio station. He and a friend were on from 3:00-4:30 every Friday afternoon. I had to go be at work as 4:00 and the other guy’s girlfriend didn’t get off until 3:45, so every week my boyfriend started the show playing a song for (I really only liked one song on their playlist, but I always listened to the whole first hour), and they ended the show with a song for the other guy’s girlfriend. The song they played for me was “All the Small Things” by Blink 182. That was over a decade ago, and to this day I smile every time I hear that song.

Day 4. A song that makes me sad- “I Loved Her First” by Heartland. I don’t know that I would have wanted to be “given away” but I wish that my dad could be there for my milestones. Not just a wedding, but my dad should have been there for my college graduation. I wish he could be there if I ever got married, or had children, or any number of things. Every time I hear this song, I want to give my dad a hug, and then I want to cry!

Friday, April 15, 2011

30 Days of Song- Day Two

Day 2. Least favorite song- I don’t really have a least favorite song, because I don’t listen to music that I don’t like- which means I can’t name any particular song that I don’t like. So, instead I’ll tell you about genre of music that I HATE (and it’s really the only one I can’t stand). I HATE that violent gangster stuff about beating ho’s and doing drugs. Like I don’t object to the occasional weed reference by a musician that normally doesn’t have that stuff in his/her/their music, but when all of your songs about hurting people or being stupid I have no respect for you, and also you are no longer an artist so much as an idiot with no internal sensor. Also, I didn’t put a song in my “30 Days of Song” playlist for today, because why would I put a song on my playlist that I DON’T like?

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

30 Days of Song- Day One

So just so Sarah knows I didn’t steal this from her- Sarah, even though much of the idea of this is the same as what you wrote, I really feel this way, and I didn’t steal it, okay? Like Sarah, much of my life is about music. I love music. I sing almost everything. My small children at work literally hear music from the time I get there until I leave. I’m either playing a cd, or we’re singing a song, or I’m singing to them. Our group time is like 90% singing songs I made up to teach concepts. The thing I miss most about church is the singing. I miss being in college choir more than most of the college friends I don’t see anymore. I love music. So when Sarah blogged about doing this 30 Days of Song thing, I wanted to play too.

Day 1. Favorite song- Wow! This might actually be the hardest question on what I’ve seen of the list so far. The other items are all more specific. My favorite song changes based on my mood, and what I’m doing, and how I want to feel. One of my favorites is “Sweet N Sassy” by I5. I like it because it’s the overall message is that women can be strong without needing a man, but that they can be strong WITH men too. My favorite line, about a minute and half in is “I will be there for him, just as strong as he will be there for me. When I give myself, then it has got to be an equal thing.” I don’t like it when women act weak around men, and I don’t like t when women act like they can only be strong by making men weak. We can both be strong. Men and women are different, and we each have different strengths, but we make each other better.

Senator Mark Kirk- making political activism complicated since 2010

Senator Mark Kirk- making political activism complicated since 2010
I get a lot of political email. Quite a bit of it is lobbyists for groups I support asking me to sign petitions. I almost always click the link and sign, but now instead of getting a “thanks for your support” page like I used to get, I get this notice
“Senator Mark Steven Kirk (R-Illinois) requires that you provide this additional information in order to communicate via email….
*Phone Number___________________________”
So, I dutifully, although aggravatedly, type in my phone number, expecting my “thanks for your support” page. And despite the additional effort I’ve put into contacting Sen. Kirk, I now read,
“Your message was not sent to the following decision makers:
Senator Mark Steven Kirk - Senator Kirk will not accept email messages unless they are sent using this web form.”
So now, I’ve taken the time to type in my phone number to contact him and failed to do so. How many people do you think now take the step of copying the information and going to his form to email him? I’m guessing not many. So in addition to doing that, I flood his office with phone calls. “Senator Kirk, I’m calling about [whatever my issue is]. As your constituent, I would urge you to [whatever I want him to do. Explain why]. I’m calling you because I was unable to simply sign the petition on this matter, because you require an additional form. Thank you for your time and service.” Man, that guy must HATE me and I feel like a jerk- but at least I know he’s heard what I think!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

A Great Weekend

You know on Friday night when I was sitting in the car waiting for Kristin to come out of her workshop, I wrote about my regrets, the things I wish I could change. But I didn’t write about what a great weekend I had, or all the amazing things I wouldn’t change. Friday was super fun, because I had the day off work and so I got to sleep in a little. Then I had lunch with my friend Sarah, and that was great! She cooked for me, which was super nice because I am usually cooking for someone else, rarely does anyone cook for me. And it was great! She made one of my favorite meals (completely on accident even!)- chicken with fried zucchini and pasta salad. And she made me some soup to take home, which was extremely delicious when I ate it today. After I left Sarah’s I drove up to Wisconsin (Whitewater), which is where the college is located. That was also pretty nice, since I was alone I got to listen to only the music I wanted, as loud as I wanted. Thank goodness for my mp3 player! Saturday I was hoping to meet up with some family, but they weren’t available :( Instead I did a little antiquing and then I went to look at some Indian Mounds. Here’s what I know- I followed the signs that said Indian Mounds --> I was on “Indian Mound Dr” passing roads like “Turtle Mound Ct” but it was completely flat. I ran out of signs pointing me towards mounds, and I never saw anything that could have been a mound. I think they paved them over to build the subdivision I was driving through. Which- would you live in one of those houses? Because I’ve seen Poltergeist, and no, no I would not. (Actually I wouldn’t for the sheer fact that they paved over history for yet another subdivision, not for fear of being haunted.) I also did some shopping at the conference vendors and bought some jumbo dice that are super fun in my class. We roll them and then practice counting the dots. On the way home, I had Kristin with me and we listened to her new CD. It’s a CD for teachers, but not really for classroom use, with songs like “I’m A Teacher, Not A Babysitter” and “Use Your Words”. And we concocted a plan for a girls’ weekend in a few weeks. We asked a bunch of our friends to go with us to St. Joseph, MI for some wine tasting, swimming in Lake Michigan, and pizza at the best pizza place I know of. Even Sunday was fun, because I went out for brunch with my friend Leah. We went to one of my favorite brunch places and had mimosas with brunch, while we talked about boys, books, and other necessities of life. Overall, despite my regret-filled post from Friday night, I had a great weekend! Just thought you might like to know that :)

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Pretend I Posted Last Night, Because That's When I Wrote This

Tonight I sit in the parking lot of a college campus, listening to “Tonight I Wanna Cry” and dwelling on my regrets. I’d like to say I’ve lived a life I can’t or don’t regret, but there’s so much I’d change if I could have the last ten days, months, or years back. It does not help that the capus I sit on, in the college I dreamed of attending and didn’t.
Ten days ago I set in motion a chain of effects that resulted in an angry boss, when I over reacted to a piece of gossip that I should have ignored. Ten months ago I opened my heart, when I should have turned away. There are guards a woman should keep in place no matter how forlorn she is. Lines on should never cross, not even in one’s mind, in a moment of lonely weakness. In the words of the song I am listening to, “It’s gonna hurt bad before it gets better”. Ten years ago the world was at my feet. I could do anything, be anything, I wanted. I could have seized the world by the tail and been someone great. Instead, I sit here tonight in a college parking lot dreaming of what could have been. Tomorrow I will return to my room in my mom’s basement. This was not my plan.
Regrets, on discovers to late, don’t disappear just because one wishes them to. They follow me, like specters of the past, haunting me, yet not causing me to make better decisions.

Sunday, April 3, 2011


Yesterday was the day Kristin finally got to actually use her Christmas present. If you don’t know, a bunch of her family and I split the cost of a “Wild Encounter” at the zoo. This is basically a chance to be a zoo keeper for a few hours and help care for your favorite animal. Kristin’s is the penguin, so that’s what we got her. Her mom, Grandma and I were going to the zoo also, to take pictures of the five minutes in the public eye portion of the program, and also to have fun at the zoo, but since she had to be there before the zoo even opened, we left at 7:30. On a Saturday morning. When I was sick.
Then we left the zoo at 3:30 so we could be back at my house in time to change and leave to see a play. Kristin and I LOVE the Reduced Shakespeare Company, which is a group of 3 guys who put on these “reduced” plays. They started with “The Complete William Shakespeare, Abridged” where they go through all of Shakespeare’s plays in just under 2 hours. The one we saw last night was “The Complete History of Sports, Abridged” every sport ever played in just under 2 hours. It was awesome. After the show I made fun of Kristin for spelling her name out when the guys were autographing our playbills, so the guy spelled mine wrong (Teena) to show me how it feels. Ha! That’s exactly what I wanted!!
Today we went English Country dancing again. That was also a ton of fun, but now I’m exhausted. My throat is on fire from talking and laughing and coughing all weekend (plus being out in the cool breeze yesterday), and I have to go back to work tomorrow. Thank goodness for next weekend, when I take a day off work to go stay in a hotel in Wisconsin for no good reason at all, except I want a break!