Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Christmas Baby

On Christmas Day, Ashley (my nephew Brett's wife) gave birth to the first baby born on Christmas day in my family.

Blake Eli Johnson
9 lbs. 20 inches

Absentee Blogger

Christmas is only a few days behind us, and already we are ready to move onto New Year's Eve. It all goes so quickly.

This year I found myself especially homesick. Missing my mom, feeling guilty that she is home alone on Christmas. Missing my family. Cousins, aunties, nephews, babies, the noise, the commotion, the whole works.

April and I had a nice, cozy, warm Christmas day. We opening gifts, stockings, and played games. Christmas Eve we saw Tangled, I loved the horse and the pet chameleon. They both make me crack up laughing. Ate good at the Tulalip Casino and headed home to relax. Enjoyed watching past episodes of Big Bang Theory, brainy humor but oh so funny.

I got hit with a cold that everyone has had a work and now just recovering. Still don't feel back to myself, but getting there.

More to come, lots on my mind...

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Two More Days

Tomorrow is Christmas Eve, can you believe it?

I can still recall, as a girl how difficult it was to will my self to fall asleep on Christmas Eve. In our little house in Cerritos there wasn't much by way of insulation, and as I got older of course I waited and waited and waited for the sound of my parents leaving the living room. Santa had arrived! If I did fall asleep, I would awake at 3 am or 4 am and sneak out to the living room. There I would silently sift through my stocking contents (Oh the joy of a stocking!) and then onto the loot from Santa! Those quiet moments in the dark exploring all the new goodies. It was such a thrill. I don't remember when I stopped believing in Santa, but I know I played along for the sake of my much younger brother of many years. I didn't mind, I still love a good surprise gift.

My childhood Christmas were so generous, to this day it is one of reasons I tend to overboard at Christmas with gifts. Sometimes the number gifts around our tree would be go grand there had to be a six foot radius of them! Of course this included Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles, and cousins but still so many presents!

I look back and think of all the hard work my mom did cooking, cleaning, shopping, wrapping, and getting us all dolled up for the day and feel a sense of admiration and appreciation. I'm sure it was exhausting. I know my Dad stayed late many Christmas Eve's helping put all the gifts together, not to mention how hard he worked to provide it all for us. You really adapt such a different sense of the holidays once you are the one providing it! I am truly thankful for all joy they worked so hard to provide to us over the years.

In memory, I still think my favorite Christmas was during my teenage years. I got my own phone line in our house and a chair matching table for my bedroom. I loved it! I felt so spoiled! Of course, there was the Easy Bake Oven (5 I think), Barbie and all her accessories, the first Pong game my Grandpa got us one memorable year. So many Christmas' to remember, so much to be thankful for. I am happy to say Christmas once again is one of my favorite holidays and look forward to spending it with the LOML! Bring on the joy!

Merry Christmas!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Christmas Time

I just love this commercial for this holiday season. It reminds me of the excitement I felt when I was a girl waiting to unwrap all those beautiful packages under the tree. A time when it seemed like days were so slow to pass and it was going to be forever before Santa arrived. Hope you like it too! Oh to feel that enthusiasm for the holiday again!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Post Fall Quarter Review

12 weeks goes extremely quickly, when it is actually only 10 weeks and Thanksgiving week is thrown in as well. This quarter went lighting quick. I won't say Medical Terminology was easy peasy, but it was NOTHING akin to all the horrific science classes I have endured. Labs and dead cats to dissected included. Finally, back on the A track and that feels good. Not having to go to the library and study is wonderful. Being able to read fiction or non-fiction for that matter and not feel guilty is a good thing as well.

Now we head into the Christmas season. Work has been painfully slow, which is never good on the pocket book this time of year. I have lost all enthusiasm for cleaning a building as old as God and as smelly as time itself (what we have to do when the restaurant is slow). Not to mention being managed by someone with severe OCD. Oh the fun there just continues.

My hope is that I can find somewhere in the medical arena to fit into for the next 9 months or so. I know I need to show some "hands-on" or "around" experience. (I have no idea if years of working as a Massage Therapy will be looked on as working with patients or not.) While applying to get into Nursing School. As they say, we shall see what happens.

Maybe it's the out of school let down, maybe it's just homesick, but I've captured a small case of the blues and am working on getting myself out of it.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Snow Days

I did not grow up in the PNW (Pacific North West) as most of you who take the time to read my blather know so snow days are new to me. Those pictures I posted a few days ago were only the beginning. There is not only a good deal of snow all around the neighborhood, but ice as well. Ice is more the reason for snow days. Have you seen the videos of crazy humans trying to navigate up and down the hills in Seattle? It's almost embarrassing and it makes me oh so grateful for off the street parking. The last thing I want to wake up to is my car buried in a pile of car dominoes. This car sliding video was shot locally and is exactly of which I speak.

I told April yesterday, "If I was a kid, I'd be so excited!" But the truth is, I am excited! I am still working on collecting the proper gear to wear out in it but I still absolutely love it. She does not, so I need to find someone who wants to go "play." There are a few little ones in the immediate neighborhood that I might make a snow man with if the rain does not wash it all away, as predicted tomorrow.

I was off of work yesterday, which was good because due to the icy weather and horrible driving conditions they closed the restaurant. I due in there at 5pm today. I am hoping for another "snow day." Hot coco, movies, some studying, and layers of clothes and a blanket. You just can't beat that!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

First Snow of 2010

I don't know what it is about snow that is so magical but it is. I felt like a kid this morning when I opened the blinds to see it floating down from above. Just love it!!!

Thursday, November 11, 2010


I was thinking about people who hurt us. I was thinking of people who hurt us the most. Who are close enough to us to hurt us the most. Our parents, our siblings, our oldest friends, spouses, children.

I am a big believer in owning my own feelings and being responsible for having them in the first place. Yet sometimes I still choose to react by being hurt by the things others have done or said to me.

I don't know why, but I was thinking about being hurt, but I was. I was thinking about who hurt me the most, even if it was unintentionally. Strange how that is a completely different kind of hurt than loosing someone you love to death. The hurtful pain is there, but it unique. It goes in and twists around and back n' forth taking hold and causing destruction.

I look back and wonder why. Why it took me so long to see what I was willing to accept no matter how uncomfortable it was. I thought about what I helped create and was willing to exist in for much too long. I'm so tired of hearing the excuses and blame for reasons things happened. No manner of illness will ever excuse behavior that is never owned up to or responsibility taken for. Those apologies are hollow. They are worthless in my mind. In my heart. Like a broken record those excuses used play over and over.

Dr. Phil drives me buggers, but I love this quote from him, "We teach others how to treat us." I believe this is true. No matter how well or how poorly.

Supposedly, we learn from past mistakes. If this is true I would say I've must of learned something. Today I am with someone who adores me. Who seldom, if ever hurts my feelings. Who is respectful. Who listens to what I say, and remembers. Who treats me better than I've ever been treated in my entire life. I hope she'd say the same thing about me. I am thankful for the love I have today. Because of her, much of the hurt in my heart has been washed away. Of course, she could hurt me dearly because I have been willing to risk totally loving her. But because of who she is,it is a chance I was willing to take. I'm so glad I did.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Post Review Experiment ~ Day 7

Sunday, Sunday, Sunday in our house is Seahawks football and sometimes Sounders Soccer. Yesterday was both.

But, I am getting ahead of myself. We got up early. We were actually at Starbucks by 8:15 am ON A SUNDAY MORNING!!! You are shocked I know, but truly not nearly as shocked as I. The interesting thing is that I wasn't even really tired. Met up with friends and had a good time laughing and talking for a good 3 hours. The time just flew by.

April and I were off to run our errands and arrived home somewhere around 2ish. She turned on the TV and we watched as the Seahawks got completely annihilated. Sad, sad, sad. It was easy to take a quick nap since there appeared to be no hope for the Hawks.

Since I had finished all my homework by Friday we caught up on Grey's Anatomy (a bit overly dramatic, if you ask me) and then onto the soccer game. Unfortunately, our Sounders were unable to beat the Galaxy. All the same, I know the Lewis family will be thrilled if Eddie ends his career with a Galaxy by taking the finals. That would be a nice way to retire! So, go Galaxy!! (Oh, and yes that means he plays with Mr. Beckham.)

But, all in all. I'm not missing the noise box so much. It's a good thing.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Experiment ~ Day 6 Rewind

So, last night I did watch Sons Of Anarchy and Medium, that I had recorded during the week. Strange. Weird. Ummmm, here's what I noticed the most;

- Too, too many commercials. Loud, obnoxious, screaming "look at me," adds I couldn't fast forward fast enough to get through.

- On Sons, there is a lot happening at once. I noticed I felt a bit besieged by the images and "flashing" around if you will. I still get a kick out of the entire story line because it is so far removed from my life but it is very visually stimulating. I was glad I watched it first.

- I watched Medium, while I like the stories and her "gift," I really enjoy the relationship portrayed between husband and wife. It seems real, healthy, they struggle, disconnect and reconnect and keep going like life.

- Lastly, I've noticed that I've been falling asleep much, much easier without watching TV. Not to mention getting to bed much earlier. That is a good thing.

It was easy to turn if off once those two shows were done airing. It took me a really long time to watch both of them, but it did help me just settle down and relax after a long day and evening working.

My plan is to keep the TV off again this week, except for those programs I record. Will see how it goes...

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Experiment ~ Day 6

Worked a double shift today. My butt is kicked,time for some intentionally viewing. I'm going to settle in and watch one of the shows I recorded. Only an hour, will be interesting to see if it feels different.

Experiment Day Friday

Wanted to watch last night when I came home but didn't. That was all for Friday, got lots of homework accomplished and my quiz so I could have Sunday free.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Experiment ~ Day 3 & 4

WOW, who would of thought I'd get used to NOT having the TV on so quickly. Honestly! Truly! Now when I look at the big empty flat screen box sitting in the corner I'm not so pulled into it. In fact, part of me feels like if I turn it on it will once again return to sucking the life out of me. Ha, not really but it does sorta feel that way some days, right? Especially with all the political ads as of lately. Now comes the bickering about who really won, etc...

As a disclaimer, I do intend to watch my Netflix and Hulu from time to time. I will probably par-take in the shows I DVR 'd this Sunday. Glee, Sons of Anarchy, and Grey's Anatomy. I watched Amazing Race on Sunday last week, and will probably tape it again but as of today looks like we can live without the Cable and the Cable bill. S-U-R-P-R-I-S-E, who'd a thunk! But it's not gone yet, so I will report on the final, final outcome.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Experiment ~ Day Three

I swear it's like going off a really good drug (not that I would know that personally but I've heard). The damn thing was almost calling to me this afternoon to be turned on, immediately! All I wanted to do was sit down and catch up on a favorite show I DVR'd. But dang it all to heck, I didn't succumb. Nope! Day three of getting used to quiet at home and I must admit tonight when I walked in the door it was actually wonderful. Funny thing, I can actually feel that I am tired. Normally, I would just sit down and watch TV to unwind. I feel like I wouldn't even notice that my body feels tired I'd just tune in and tune out, if you will. So instead I checked Facebook and I read a few of my favorite blogs (http://dooce.com/ and http://drgrumpyinthehouse.blogspot.com/) Had a good laugh and now here I am.

Another positive development and shocking truth is that the house is cleaner than I've kept it in months, maybe years!!!! Someone will love me for that! To top it all off I got almost an entire chapter of home work done today. Hmmmmm, this no TV thing just might be a good thing. It may take a while to adjust to but today it does not seem impossible. Well, not entirely.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Experiment ~ Day Two

First, let me say how difficult I found it NOT to turn on the TV last night. I totally use it to keep me company, especially while I'm doing homework and when 10:00 pm rolled around it was like I had an itch I needed to scratch. I didn't but man it was darn near impossible.

Once again this morning I wanted to know what the weather was expected to be like and I almost automatically turned on the TV when I came downstairs. Today I had to remind myself not to and I did not. Just looked on-line for the report.

I think today was easier since I was out and about all day. Had the fortune of having the day off and was able to spend time with Cristi and her mom, Bonnie. They were here for Eddie's soccer game Sunday night and stayed a few extra days. We got so lucky and had absolutely beautiful weather and headed out for Bainbridge Island. One of my fav's. Had a delicious lunch at the Harbor Pub with an amazing view of the harbour. Drove around the island to site see and dropped into one of my favorite nursery's, Bainbridge Nursery. The colors all over the island looked like a combination of fire and gold. Just stunning. Made a quick stop at a new candy shop called Bon-Bon's and headed back to Seattle. Hope they made their flight, if they did it was with few minutes to spare. It was great to catch up with one of the oldie-but goody friends and her mom.

Long drive home, but not too bad. Only a bit of stop n' go. Since April is working so late it is actually nice not to have the TV on and spend the time catching up and reconnecting. I still haven't gotten used to how quite the house is without it.
One thing I realize for certain is that I use the TV also as a way to relax. Like tonight, I'm too tired to study, don't really want to read (too tired now to focus) and while turning the TV on would be nice I see that just heading up and taking a shower and hitting the hay is probably the best choice. So no TV = not staying up too late tonight. That is a good thing.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Experiment ~ Day One

For quite sometime in my household we keep talking about getting rid of cable. That is our Comcast Cable. It seems that no matter which one we try they all end up costing about $120 bucks a month or more. It seems like such a rip off when I count the number of houses that probably have cable just on my block alone, not to mention paying for "high speed" internet.

Today was supposed to be "D" day for the cable. But...we were at breakfast Friday morning and just couldn't agree on what to do. It wasn't that we were arguing, but really I just can't decide either way. Of course the practical part of me says let it go. Let it go. The other side of me says, it's now getting colder. We will be home more. We have shows we like to watch and look forward to them. Football Sundays. I realized the justifications could go on and on and on. So, April told me to pick a number, one or nine. I picked nine. Nine we keep it, one we let it go she decided. It came down to our friendly waitress Hannah then picking one or nine. She picked nine. Ha. So for now, it's still connected.

Here's the thing, I'm going to do my damnest not to turn it on this week. First of all, I want to see if I can. If the quiet in the house will drive me bat shit crazy or not. Second of all, I want to see if I will miss it. I figure a week should tell me. I still have my computer. I still have homework. I still have a good book I'm reading. New recipes to cook, cleaning, visiting with friends, etc...

The funny thing is I realize what a habit has become to have it on in the background. I have always turned it on when I am home alone. This morning after I showered and got dressed I came downstairs and low and behold, even though I had consciously already made this decision I hit the button to turn on the TV. It is just that automatic. I immediately re-hit the button turning it off, but it surprised me that I even did it. Is having the TV on that buried in my subconscious? Seems so.

So, dinner is almost cooked. With April driving an hour each way and working 10 hour days, she will appreciate that. Of course, now there is no excuse for being rushed with any studying. In fact, quite a few projects have already come to mind to complete. So, day one has about 6 more hours in it. Let's see what else comes to light with the TV turned off.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010


in the neighborhood today and wanted to shoot some pictures of the local Halloween decorations. I took 2 pics and the batteries in my camera were ka-put! Luckily, I had already decided to walk to the local Bartels for a few essentials so I picked up some batteries as well.

Hopefully the sun will be shinning bright tomorrow morning and I will be able to get out and snap some festive shots! Love this time of year...

This shot is from Tad's lovely home in Connecticut, it is known as Pumpkin Hallow. Perfect for this time of year!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Punkin' Lovin'

My friend Tad has taken to posting a "pumkin a day" on Facebook this last week or so. I think it is a great idea. He is also the one who posted the American flag every day for a month before the 4th of July. I'm going to set out in my own neighborhood this week to scout for great pumpkin pics but I just love these shots of white pumpkins. It's a good place to start!

These lil' ones remind me of entire bulb of garlic!

I had to post this one since it looks like the centipedes are spelling out my initials.

Shabby Chic Porch

Monday, October 18, 2010

The Last One Got Me Thinking

Writing about the LMP aka the Last Menstrual Period, got me thinking about my first one.
It is one of the funniest stories of my teenage life, except I wasn't even quite a teenager yet. I was in sixth grade. I was eleven. Eleven for god sakes! I was the ONLY sixth grader to have to bring a purse to school. Oh yay me! Not!

I started my first period in the summer. We were on a family vacation at the river. For those of you who don't know, the river is now a common destination for jet skiers, wake boarders, and people who want to get way out of control and party. But during the era of our visits to the river we mainly water skied and tubed. It was not crowded. It was hot. Hot, as in 100 to 115 degrees easily in the summer. In other words, unless you were in the water or had air conditioning to escape to, it was my idea of miserable. This was before my parents had a mobile home. They had a very small travel trailer and we had no air conditioning. It was unbearably hot and my bunk was on the very top front of the trailer. At our campsite in the Wheeler Inn, there wasn't a tree or sign of shade any where near our small metal box. So imagine this as my refuge.

As I said, these trips were mainly spent water skiing. We also floated around in inner tubes, took running starts and jumped off the dock, and for a longer float jumped off the point and into the river. The current would carry us away towards Big River. My guess at least 80 percent of the day time was spent under or in the water!

I was the proud owner of two very white water skis. I still skied doubles at the point. I was out on a run with my dad at helm of the ski boat. I had gone on the usual tour of up towards Blue Water Lagoon, onto the small damn, and back around. To bring me in Dad headed for the spot on the inlet that we had set up for the day. On shore sat the gang watching my landing. While I was skiing, for reasons I'll never know, I looked down at my skis and they were covered with very dark polka dots all over them. I had no idea what it could have been. They just kept coming. Strange, very strange. As I headed closer into shore, I became more concerned. I had been skiing since I was 6 years old, so I had no fear of coming in very close to the shoreline. As I flew in, I basically ended up stepping right out of my skis and came running up onto the sand. While that was cool, I remember calling for my mom to come over to me. I landed gracefully enough to show her my skis. She looked puzzled at first, but it quickly must have dawned on her. I remember her putting her arm on my shoulder and leaning in to talk to me.

The thoughts inside my head sounded something like this; Urgh!!!! What!!??? It can't be!!!! It's total bathing suit only weather. Pads just don't survive water!!!! It's only Tuesday!!! What will I do for the rest of the week???

Suffice to say, I did survive but it was one long and miserable week. I was stuck in a bathing suit top and shorts. At least I could still ride in the boat. I spent more time in that hot little travel trailer than I care to remember. I had cramps. Man oh man, did I have cramps! So, I began my very first period while water skiing. Now it makes me laugh. And I think the story kinda goes along with the rest of my quirky life.

Saturday, October 16, 2010


This post is not for the stuffy at heart, or the squeamish, or the ones who don't discuss bodily functions. You have been forewarned.

Imagine this, a woman looks forward (in the strangest way?) to this day, so much so, it has its' very own abbreviation in my Med Terminology course. I for one can say, yes at this point I am ready for it. Or really the end of it! This awaited event has come to be known as; LMP. Otherwise known in medical circles as (please hear the drum roll in your head) The Last Menstrual Period. Period. Amen. You. Are. Done. With. It. Forever. Ah, the joy of that idea. The thrill of it. The absolute downright frickin' oddness of it. Will I finally begin to feel my age because of it????

About 10 years ago, when this crazy journey of periomenopause began I did not have a period for 9 months. And, no not because I was pregnant and had that baby carted off secretly to Botswana. It's a long story, one I will continue on some other post but it lead me to a little insight what the future would someday be like. Easier. Calmer. No more once a month day where I swear the flood of the century occurred within my womb. Or I should say came out of it. If men bled like this there would be a paid day off once a month, no questions asked. Ever. At. All. Understood. It was and still until recently is a pain in my proverbial ass. It is an issue at work, who can run into the can every hour to "change" out her tampon when you are working a 4 to 6 hour busy shift. Usually not me. Who can stand to where a damn pad, just in case? I'm sorry, but not me. They still feel something akin to a diaper that is just in the way when walking. Don't get me wrong, on a really bad day (while working) I've had to, but I detest it.

Oh, and how about trying to sleep when your nether regions have turned into a non-stop faucet of red? Right, sure, uh-huh. Liar, I know you can't sleep well then either. I roll from side to side, trying to never lie on my front or back for fear of leaking all over the bed. Yes, even through the mattress pad. Never mind the sheets, blanket, and duet cover. Gross. I've tried sleeping on top of a towel. Yeah, that really works. For who? Not me, one move and it ends up all tucked up under me and around me. It's anywhere but where it should be. Annoying. I'm bleeding like a mad women as if I'm not annoyed enough I am tangled up in my own bed in one of my least favorite towels. Great.

How about those favorite panties? You know the ones you liked so much you bought four or five of because they were just perfect. Ha, one forgetful morning when you no longer are keeping track of every 28 days and wah-la no more perfect panties. Euwieeeeee. Now they are just yuckie and stained. Again.

Okay, and this is just the plain ugly truth. Some days I bleed so heavy if I am not careful it will run down my leg and all over everything just moving from the loo to the shower or vice versa. Told you it was ugly. Men wonder why we get grumpy. P-L-E-A-S-E. Never mind the fact that I may not have my contacts in and see this and leave it unknowingly. There is that to deal with on top of it all.

There be little mention of the embarrassing leaks, the painful cramps, the seven days of pure hell until I finally found a miracle called "the pill," the torture of putting in and wearing my first tampon, and lastly the fear of having an unwanted pregnancy when I was younger. Most of these lovely side dishes are well known by all of us who are women.

All of this said, no wonder it has earned its' own abbreviation. LMP indeed, bring it on, bring it on. Oh, and hurry up about it, would ya please.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

I Want Wonder Woman's Gold Bra and Bracelets, Please

My teflon is wearing thin. I joke with April to respray me before any "big" thing or possible uncomfortable situation but lately it has not helped.

My emotional and mental ability to protect myself has diminished away to a very thin layer. A very, very, very thin layer.

About three weeks ago, each day at work became what I dub, "hell," day. Kinda like hell week all high school football players went through each summer, only this lasted for almost two weeks solid. It's dribbled into almost each shift I've worked since then. It sucks. The screaming mimi I am employed by thought it was a good thing he actually managed not to scream at me on the last crazy Friday.

I've tried every angle in order to bring some semblance of harmony into my work life. Those of you who read this know I can get along with just about everyone, it has been rumored I should have gone to work for the UN. I am usually that good at negotiating peace. But not in this situation...NOT. AT. ALL.

Why am I penning this off this morning? Because I am due at work in a half hour. I don't want to go there today, tomorrow, or ever again. Until this week I could still manage to show up with a smile of my face and look forward to the day. For some reason, I just can't sum it up anymore. I feel defeated. It has become personal.

My glass is half full attitude is drained. I have been looking for job possibilities but so far I see a big fat nada on the horizon.

So this morning, I pray for embodiment of Lynda Carter. I just need my damn teflon back, now!!!!

Thursday, September 30, 2010

The Line

Somewhere, you have to draw a line. A line where you choose between right and wrong. Moral and immoral. Good and evil. Accepting or judgmental. Standing up or falling down. Respect for privacy or public knowledge.

Dharum Ravi and Molly Wei made a choice, and as far as I am concerned and they crossed that line from decent to indecent. They crossed that line in a very big way. They not only crossed it but they did it in roaring fashion, rubber burning, dirt flying, cars like streaks blazing by in a fury. Only the fury they caused broke someone. It broke him so big and wide, he couldn't see any possibility of a life because of it. This story breaks my heart as well. You can read about it here.

When will people learn we are all made out of flesh and bone, want and desire, and the need for love? When will people learn to be respectful of all others despite our supposed differences? You know I always joke that I don't care if you are fucking a goat, as long as you and the goat are happy. That said, what I mean is that if there are two consenting adults what you do behind closed doors is no one's business. Truly, that is what I believe. I don't care what the Bible says. I don't care what you believe it says, or any other manifesto you subscribe to for your life (or after life) guideposts. All I ask is that just like I do for you, you do for me. I respect that fact that we are all entitled to our own opinion. It does not make you wrong in my eyes, just different. What you think of me, is really none of my business. I try to live my life in with that in mind.

All this said, it makes me so sad that these two people took it upon themselves to post a video so personal and intimate. If it was a straight couple, I'd be just a angered. Words like personal and private scream out in my head. Forget trust and consideration, after all school's only been in session for a few months so I'm betting that no bond was formed between the men as roommates. At least I hope not, if so that must have felt like an even bigger betrayal.

I can only imagine the pain Tyler Clementi must have felt. It must have been total and complete with no sign of relief or end in site. Sadly, this is the only thing I can assume since he will never be here to comfort. Never be here to ask. Never be able to hear the words from his family that they love him. Accept him.

There is talk of treating this as a hate crime. This is a tough one for me, since the longest sentence allowed is 10 years. When it comes to punishing Ravi and Wei I am perplexed. How do you deliver justice, when nothing will bring back this boy's life. He was 18. Only 18 years old. How many years of a life did Tyler miss out on? Would he have lived to a ripe old age, was he a risk taker, does illness run in his family? I wish we could sentence them for unknown amount of years that Tyler would have lived. Extremely harsh, I know.

In essence, I realize that they did not literally kill Tyler. But words once spoken can never be unheard again and video once put on the Internet can never been unseen again. It will be out there for all eternity. This is the greater crime in my eyes. What they did can never be undone, how do you punish someone for that? Is there a sentence that would be fitting? In a way, at least three lives could be forever changed because of their actions. I don't think they ever intended those to be their own.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Witness to Happiness

Homesick. I got so home sick the other day watching this family celebrate birthday's together. They were a big group, mostly sisters and one brother 8 of them total I think. Since they live all over the united states when they all get together they celebrate one another's birthdays.
There was laughter, lots and lots of laughter. Funny cards. A typed up poem on a special piece of paper for each one of them. I don't know what it said but I overheard one of them say it it made the hairs on the back of her neck stand up.

This family celebration made me miss my family, so much. All the lunches with my Mom, Auntie, and cousins where we caught up over a meal. Where the laughter was easy and always present. The holiday celebrations where the meal was ever delicious and the one thing you could count on was kids everywhere. Kids who grew, and grew, and grew so tall that any hope of me not being the shortest one in the family died. Weddings with smiles and tears and beautiful brides and happy grooms. Cute flower girls and nervous ring bearers that made each ceremony complete. Baby showers. Cousin parties. Even funerals, at least we had one another for comfort.

I miss them. The loudness. The insanity. The thoughtful presents. The smiles. The hugs. And most of all the laughter, I miss hearing their laughter as it crested over the room down the hallways and back into my heart.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Compilation, or Where Did My Summer Go?

So, if you've checked in to read my blog you've noticed I really haven't posted much this last 3 months. I really intended to but first, being out of school was such a relief I was off the computer more (I wanted to have a life and be involved, not head buried!); second, I have been working more this summer and we were busy (not much has changed there-still the bosses favorite whipping girl), and lastly we have had visitors for about a month solid. While it is fun, I wish the visits were spaced apart so we could enjoy them more and each other in between! Who knows, with the negative post I put on Facebook about Fox News and Glen Beck, my father-in-law swears he won't be back. I can only hope he was kidding. I'll just say, I'm glad I have no addiction to any news channel no matter how biased or unbiased it may be. I find the constant news on the TV to be exhausting.

This summer left me with a Christmas wish list of sorts, it is as follows;

I pray that as time passes I can continue to grow as a person. Try new things. Stay away from eating the things I know will trigger my stomach like an inner tsunami. That when telling a story the time and day of week things happened are not relevant to it's "just". That while my muscles still move correctly, I exercise them enough to keep them moving that way. That I remain capable of cultivating conversation with those I love, those whose opinion is completely opposite to mine, and new friends for a very long time. That even though I am older, I remain open and playful. That my face adopts a permanent semi-welcoming smile so I am approachable. And lastly, that I always have enough resources to color my hair. A vain but simple wish, really.

Oh, and very, very lastly there's no friends, like your old friends. Thanks to Lisa Crisp-Koehler for making sure we got to spend time together while she was here!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Changing Values

After my horrible marriage, where I tried to create what I thought I wanted, I made a startling discovery-the things I thought were important to me are not. Not so much at all. The perfectly quaffed living room. Curtains. Rugs. Probably the only things the only thing I'm still unable to resist are art or things that make me smile. Luckily, April agrees.

You know the feeling and the presence of which I speak, "Hi, welcome to my beautiful home..." Like my Dad's house. It is beautiful, no doubt, but other than the back family room and the kitchen I feel like I can't move or breathe in it. Not that it's too much or too showy, it just isn't me anymore. I don't covet perfection, I covet enjoyment. I covet comfort. I want you too feel at home in my house. I will never forget one of my overnight stays there, in the guest bedroom with all white sheets, all white towels in the bathroom, even the palest of carpet on the floor. Can you guess what time of the month it was for me? Like the worst of the 5 days and not a "safe" thing to use or sleep on in sight. I barely slept for fear of causing ruin. While it's beautiful, it's just simply too much for me.

I don't spend much time shopping. I guess the cost of an education has become more important than a new seasonal wardrobe. Recently, my sister-in-law asked me how my place is decorated. I laughed. My first thought is with love. There is no shabby chic or modern or theme. It's just a big ol' comfy couch, a few comfy chairs, and a flat screen. Yes, we do like the newer things, I'm just not so willing to go into hock for them anymore. After three years together, April and I just bought a new comforter and sheet set. It took that long for it to become something that was important, and mostly that was because one of us likes to sleep wrapped up like a burrito (king size makes that issue disappear!). While I like it, it doesn't make me swoon. It's just something that is.

I think the other reason I've changed my ways of thinking about new things is this: they only stay new for a very short time. In my married life, two days after the delivery of a beautiful new dining room table, I happened to spy one of the cats on top of it. This was not good but what followed was worse. As Moe started to slip to the side, she dug in her claws and slid all the way off of the perfect new wood. She slid from the center I might add, leaving a very deep set of cat claw marks across it. Sigh...so much for new. It was ours for ever after that.

Someday, when I'm done with paying for an education maybe shopping will once again fun. The catalogs will arrive and I will order five of something I like just because I can. I will see a funky $700 chair that goes perfectly with the lamp next to it and bring it home. But for now, I'm fine with my new values. Happy certainly looks better on me than a cool looking living room ever did.

Friday, September 3, 2010

A Surprise to His Wife

Faking this injury eventually back fired, but he swore he had a groin injury. Joe had convinced the massage therapists I worked for he had a badly pulled groin. According to him he received this painful injury while playing baseball.

He would come in for massage therapy, usually once a week. He was a client of the twin sisters that owned the business, thankfully. Only, every now then they would both be on vacation - leaving one of the other "team" to end up having to work on Joe. Ugh.

I will never forget having to massage this man. Let's just say that it was probably one of the most awkward situations I've experienced. Now, I know how painful a real groin pull can be, and trust me when I tell you I was in no way convinced this man was in any pain. If anything, by all appearances appeared to be completely enjoying the experience. If ya know what I mean! How embarrassing, not only was he at full mast, but there I am as a therapist have to work around it. Literally! It was just ridiculous. Thank goodness he was not my regular client, I would never had had the patience nor the trust.

Joe came in for regular massages the entire time I was employed at the health club, it had to have been at least several years he was receiving this special attention. Unfortunately for him, he ran into one of the "team" members while on vacation with his wife in Las Vegas. They said hello and made small talk until Tone asked the million dollar question of him: "So how is that groin injury you had worked on? Are you finally recovered and doing better?"

I can only imagine the look on his face. I can only imagine the look on his wifes face!

Apparently, when this question hit the air she hit him with, "What groin injury?"

He then mumbled something to my coworker and they made a quick departure. Tone said it was pretty funny, he had been just as suspect of Joe as myself.

I knew it! I knew it! I just about died laughing when I heard this story because I never did believe he was injured, just a big ol' pervert. Now, not only was he just a big perv, but his wife knew as well! I imagine this was his most memorable trip to Vegas, ever.

The Perfect Day

You know the kind of day I mean, when the sky is bluer than you can recall ever seeing, ever. Little tiny bright white puffy clouds that look like cotton balls littered all over the horizon. The enormity of it just endless.

I wonder why it is that this kind of day makes anything feels possible. Even the next two years, even endless hours of studying, and hours of sacrifice that you pray will pay off. Because of days like today, and messages from good friends who believe in me somehow I know I will make it through. Thanks.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Trying Out New Recipes ~ And Making A Few Up as I Go Along

One of the things I love about NOT being in school is that I have free time. Free time equals more time to be creative. Taking photos, changing the color of some furniture, writing, painting (okay, so I have some ideas but nothing on canvas), and cooking!

This week I came up with a cold chicken thai noodle salad. Loved it! Teriyaki chicken, cucumber, fresh bean sprouts, carrots, cilantro, very finely chopped celery, and green onions. The peanut sauce recipe was oh so easy (I had to improvise a bit since I didn't pick up the coconut milk at TJ's when I saw it!). I cooked up the spaghetti noodles, tossed it with the veggies, chicken, and peanut sauce, and dinner was served. So easy to put together as well, and tasted even better on the second day after everything was chilled through completely.

A few weeks back I made a dinner salad based on the idea of Caprese Salad.You know the one, fresh basil, tomato slices, and fresh buffalo mozzarella cheese.

I happen to like it with a bit of balsamic, EVO, and kosher salt. So, I mixed some romaine lettuce up with fancy mixed greens to begin. I added fresh tomato, chopped up basil, TJ's marinated mozzarella balls, and amazing croƻtons from the farmers marker (what a deal, a buck fifty for a bag of multi grain bites of deliciousness). I topped it off with a mix EVO, balsamic vinegar, pressed garlic, black pepper, and Italian spices. It was so delectable.

I would love to tell you I have made an amazing salad like every night, but no. Thinking that will be something I have to start doing with some of the things I have in mind, but sure have had fun experimenting with dinner!

Tonight, first try at real Buttercream Frosting for cupcakes I'm making to take to work. Onto the powdered sugar awaiting me in the one woman kitchen!

p.s. I would be happy to pass on any recipes! I will try to link them here, as well.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Friends Who Write

Since I seem to be all talked out/written out these days I thought you might enjoy reading some great stories by my friend Keith. Keith is a writer for the O.C. Register and can tell a good yarn. He has been in Lithuania with his son and his boys baseball team. Makes for great reading, if

A Bit Of England, Thanks to Marianne

I just had to post these photos that Marianne took while she was in England. I think they are wonderful. I think "The Gate," is my favorite. Enjoy!

Heat Wave Rolled Right Over Me

So, it was hot yesterday. I mean really hot especially for the PNW. I think it almost hit the 100's. It was so warm April and I came home early and just moved as little as possible all afternoon. Really.

It was so hot, that when I decided to go to bed I forgot there was chicken cooking in the oven. (Thank goodness April reminded me.) The bird did not get covered up, luckily he was just fine this morning. While I remembered to take out my contact lenses, I completely forgot to put any lids on the case. And I thought the heat had not really effected me yesterday. Obviously I was wrong!

The heat is still here, and it should make for a very interesting day at good ol' non-air conditioned restaurant.

Egads, I'm thinking I should just call in and go float somewhere for the day!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Random with a Film Rating

Now, while unlike the crowd I haven't read the book (been reading others!) I did watch the film last night. Nothing on cable, didn't feel like reading, and wanted to be entertained. I was.

I love suspense and thriller films. Not to the point of horror flicks, but edgy not silly. This fit my tastes perfectly. Cunning, smart, several very intriguing plot lines going on simultaneously. Set in the beauty of Sweden. Subtitles or no, this is an excellent ride.

The main characters involve a journalist, a "researcher" (I say this ever so loosely because truly she is a master hacker obtaining information that many of us would love to be able to access), and a very wealthy family. The family at their core is outnumbered by sick and twisted members who came of age during a time when being a Nazi was acceptable. The one family member who still has a heart is searching for his missing niece some forty years after her disappearance. The search for her plays out among the drama of Lisbeth's life and it's unexpected collision with Mikael's.

There is a hearty dose of violence, black-mail (with a sick retribution I so enjoyed), an odd love story, a history lesson, and an excellent ending.

It is rather long, so make yourself a big popcorn with a hearty glass of water ever it is you enjoy and watch this film. You won't be disappointed!

p.s. April has read the series of the books and was thrilled with the film actually followed the story line extremely close!

Monday, August 9, 2010


I just haven't had it in me to sit down and organize my thoughts. At least not enough to a point where they can be followed or make sense.

So, unlike everything else, I am choosing to check in only on occasion and give voice to my words.

I guess lately, it seems like there are demands everywhere you go. Go to the Co-Op to shop for better/greener ways to live and you are hounded by the "Save the National Forest," girls. It went something like this...

"Blah, blah, blah, are you with me on saving the forest and rain forest?" she said.

Oh, for the love of Pete, like I could possibly say NO or better yet, yeah I'm for slashing and burning the entire forest and building crappy track homes all the way to the top of Mt. Rainer. Really? Is there a good answer to that not so innocent question?

"Oh, yeah and all we need is a monthly donation that comes right out of your checking account or credit card," she smiled sweetly and said.

I don't know. It just seems like everywhere I go, someone wants something from me. And. I. Am. All. Tapped. Out.