Tuesday, October 31, 2006

If We Only Had Kids.....

What would our holidays be like if we had children? See for yourself.
Our Ladybug Sophie
We had to bribe her to get into her costume. Food always works with Sophie. Notice we have trained her to eat off a fork. She is so smart and has such good table manners.

Not only is she not happy with the costume, but she is tired of me taking her picture....constantly.
God, I can't wait until we have children. I already have their costumes picked our for the first three Halloweens.


Happy Halloween everyone.

Last night when I got off work I got home and decided that I was feeling bad, but not bad enough to not go to the gym. I figured I can only feel better. And I was right, I felt so much better after spending 30 minutes there. I can't wait to go back on Wednesday. I am hoping that maybe the "icky" feeling I was feeling was just allergies or the constant change in weather we have been having. One day it's in the 40's and then the next is in the 70's. I want to say either stay warm or get cold. Pick one and stay.

As I have mentioned before I have a little friend at the local bagel shop. My little gay friend is always so nice to me and knows my order without even asking me. I am sure this saves me at least 30 seconds every day. I decided to do something for him for Halloween since he is always so nice to us when we go there. I put together a little basket of candy for him. Actually it was a good size basket filled with lots of chocolate and candy. I gave it to him yesterday and he loved it and and was in complete shock that I did that "just for him". As he handed me my bagel he told me it was on the house today. Nothing better then giving a gift and getting your bagel for free.

We always (well the last two years) have a lot of kids that come to our house on Halloween. Two weeks ago we went to Walmart and got our candy. I knew that I was going to be seeing my oldest nephew and I wanted to put together a great basket for him filled with lots of candy. So we stocked up on the candy. I am talking $60 worth of candy, some for our nephews and some for the trick-or-treaters that would come to our house. Last Thursday I called his Mom to make sure they would be home on Saturday. I told her what I was doing and she said that the kids were not allowed candy this Halloween because they had broken their rule of no candy in the bedroom. Crap. I knew I had all this candy and I didn't know what I was going to do with it. So now we are stuck with all this candy, popcorn balls and little bags of Cheetos. The kids that come to the door at 9pm are going to think they are the luckiest kids in the world. In order to get the candy out of our house I will probably be dumping the candy in their sacks.

Tonight Laura is making a special dinner just for Halloween. For one night we are going to forget we are on Weight Watchers. We are going to set up our firepit in the driveway and sit outside just waiting for the kids to start coming by.

What a great day this is going to be.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Check out this Blog

Did you guys hear the news???? Melissa Etheridge's wife, Tammy has a blog? Click here to read her blog. I read the post about how they picked the names for their twins and it was one of the sweetest and best written posts I have ever read. Check it out.

Why I Can't Be Sick

I woke up this morning feeling fine just very tired. I shouldn't be tired since I was asleep by 10:30pm and didn't get up until 7:30am. As the day has gone on I have felt worse and worse. I feel all achy and I have a slight headache. My eyes are running and I feel like there's something stuck in my throat. I haven't been sick for almost two years. I really hope my luck hasn't run out and I am coming down with something. I just don't have time for this. Here's why I can't get sick right now:

1) My schedule at work is booked solid for three weeks. With one person gone from our department it's been busy, busy, busy at work. On a usual month I take about 120 calls and so far this month I have taken 196 and there's still one more day left.

2) I am having a root canal on Thursday. I don't want to have to reschedule and I don't know if they will do it if I am sick. Again I don't (and can't) reschedule and if you have any questions see #1.

3) I have another dentist appointment with my regular dentist a week from Friday. If I miss Thursday's appointment I will have to reschedule the regular dentist appointment. Again, see #1.

4) Tomorrow is Halloween and I really want to pass out candy to all the ghosts and goblins that come to our house. I mean, I really, really, really want to.

God, I really hope that I am not getting sick. If I do come down with something I am going to blame it on the DMV. Standing in line with so many people for an hour and half would have to be the reason I came down with something.

Damn, Damn, Damn

Sunday, October 29, 2006

5 Truths

Last week I was tagged by Isabel and I am just now getting around to it. Here are my 5 Truths.

1) Sometimes I am so caught in the past. I am constantly thinking "6 years ago I was doing this or that" etc. It drives everyone around me crazy, including myself. When I was a teenager I went to the same summer camp for six summers and loved every minute I spent there. I check their website everyday looking at the weather up in Grand Rapids, Minnesota and reading the message boards. I love knowing what is going on at camp.

2) The Wal-Mart that we go to is over by where my parents live and the church I went to as a child and adult. There are many times when I will drive by the Kingdom Hall just to see who is there. Laura is so patient with me when we do drive by and never questions my reasons for driving by.

3) I never did drugs until I was in my mid-20's and even then the only thing I did was pot. The first time I smoked it I was alone and once it kicked in I sat there and laughed at myself for 20 minutes. I then went outside and smoked a cigarette (I had heard that if you smoke a cig right after it will keep the high going) and I continued to laugh at myself. I went inside because I was afraid my neighbors would know what I was doing. I know, a little paranoid. I smoked pot for a few months and then got worried that I would suddenly be drug tested at work. (never was) If pot ever became legal I would probably smoke it on a regular basis.

4) The winter of 2002 I had just been accepted back into the church (after being kicked out for smoking) and I so wanted to celebrate Christmas that I went and bought a small x-mas tree, some lights and a few decorations. I kept it in my living room, but was prepared to run it upstairs if someone just happen to stop by. No one did and it stayed up through the first of the year. Now that we have a 7ft tree, the small tree I bought so long ago is always set up in the spare room in front of the window. I will probably always keep that tree to remind me how happy I am being "free" from the church.

5) I used to always think that I was a morning person, but in the past year I have realized that I hate mornings. Unless it's the weekend, I am usually always grumpy before 11am. Laura was laughing at me this past weekend because I got up with the dog around 6am and I sat downstairs watching music videos. I was singing along at the top of my lungs. She said she got a kick out of it because that would never happen M-F. I didn't even realize I was singing loud enough for her to hear me.

So, those are my truths. Next I need to tag five people. So, I tag Casey, Lynilu, Kitty, Sassy, and Not-so-Pregnant and of course anyone else that feels like sharing some truths.

*The picture above is of our pumpkins all lit up tonight.

Our Pumpkins

As usual we have had a very busy weekend. Thank goodness we got an extra hour of sleep last night, otherwise I think we would have been exhausted. The weekend started out on Friday when I got off work and having to stand in line at the DMV for an hour and half trying to get Laura's car tagged. Luckily there were two very amusing people standing in line with us. One was a man in his late 60's telling us how he didn't seem to have a problem with marijuana and that when he was in Vietnam he had some of the best pot ever. He really made our long wait in line entertaining. Note to self: when we have to renew our tags in 2008, don't wait til the last week of the month. After standing in line for what seemed forever we didn't feel like going home to cook so we were off to TGIFridays for dinner. Dinner hit the spot. Then we were off to Wal-Mart for some last minute Halloween shopping for the nephews we were going to see the next day. I am still trying to figure out how we spent $90 on junk.

Saturday morning we woke up and went to Weight Watchers. Now it had been two weeks since we had been and I was at least expecting a little weight loss. NOPE. I actually gained .8lbs. Damn. The lady there didn't seem to concerned and said that I should not be upset about that. I did ask if I could take off all my clothes to weight in and she looked at me like, "huh?" It was worth a shot. We then came home and waited for the Geek Squad to come by to connect our laptop to our other computer and printer. They were in and out of our house in just one hour. Then it was off to the south where we were visiting Laura's family and my oldest nephew. Taking in baskets of Halloween fun to our nephews is always fun and I love seeing the expressions on their face when we show up. Add some homemade caramel apples and we were the favorite aunts all around. By 3pm we headed home and again decided that we were starving and wouldn't make it home because we were so hungry and stopped at Ryan's for their buffet. It was good and I managed to fill up on salad before heading to the comfort food. I had never been to Ryan's and found it very tasty and I look forward to going back. Here are some pictures of what we have done today.
We bought two pumpkins for this year and decided today was the day to carve them.
Here is Laura carving her pumpkin.

Here is my finished product. I picked the easiest of the patterns because I am still a "rookie" when it comes to carving. I think it turned out pretty good if I say myself.

Here is Laura's final product. She decided to go with a kitty cat in honor of our strays. I can't wait to see them all lit up tonight.

Friday, October 27, 2006

A Day in the life of Sophie-Cat

I thought I would share with all of you the life of one of our cats. Sophie-cat is the "boss" and what she says around here goes. No questions asked. Here is a typical day for our Princess. Thank you Laura for documenting this for us. 5:59AM(it was a early morning for all of us)



3:00pm Realizing it's time for Dr. Phil.

3:02pm: realizes she has already seen this Dr. Phil.

God Always Provides

I am constantly amazed at how God always provides for me. Going through the day sometimes I forget, but then something happens and I am reminded.

Last April when we were going through the bathroom remodel and the crisis with Ben missing I had a very good friend going through something horrible. I met this friend at my current job and we worked together for just six months, but we have continued to be friends throughout. Before she left her job here her partner of 14 years was diagnosed with a brain tumor. Her last few months here were not good ones due to her partner going through countless surgeries trying to remove the tumor. Finally in April 2005 she decided that she needed to be home with her partner and their 9 year old daughter. I was sad to see her go, but knew she needed to be with her family more then to be here.

In December 2005 the tumor came back. Within weeks her partner was in the hospital with more surgeries trying to remove the tumor. Brain surgery is very hard on the body and her partner suffered greatly. In April her partner went back in the hospital and did not leave. Right in the middle of the bathroom remodel hell, L's partner passed away. That Friday I went up to the hospital to say a last goodbye to L's partner. It was one of the hardest things I have ever done, besides saying goodbye to my own Grandmothers. Seeing L and their daughter so upset and in turmoil as to how they would go on with their lives without V was almost too much to see. As I was leaving the hospital L was talking to me about the upcoming funeral and how stressed she was about paying for it. A year without working to take care of her partner had taken a toll on their finances. L was so upset that she felt she couldn't provide a proper funeral for V and she just didn't know what to do. Even the most simple funeral is in the thousands. Without even thinking I pulled out my checkbook and wrote her a check to help with some of the costs. I knew that a little bit of my help might take some of the stress off L and that was the only thing I could think of that would make L feel a little stress in a moment of unbelievable stress and sorrow. The money was given to her with no intentions of repayment. I knew there would never be a moment in my life where I would need that money more then L at that moment.

Wednesday I got a call from L who said she wanted to meet us for dinner. Since April we've been trying to get our families together, but something always seemed to come up. Thursday night was perfect for both of us. I knew it was going to be good to see L and her (now) 11 year old daughter.

At dinner, L explained that V's life insurance had finally paid and she was wanting to pay back all those that helped for the funeral. I explained that the money was never given with the intention that it would be re payed. I was simply doing what a friend does for another friend. She knew that, but said she really wanted to pay us back. Out of respect for her and her feelings towards the funeral I took the check.

It's times like this that I am constantly amazed at how God provides for us. This coming month we have more expenses in regard to my teeth. Another root canal and 2 crowns equals almost $1500. If I just allow Him to provide for me, He never lets me down. Laura and I had worked out a way to pay for all the dental work, but things were going to be tight. Add to that expenses to tag and pay the taxes on Laura's car it was going to be a very tight month. Now the financial burden is lifted and now I just need to learn to rely on God all the time.

I must never forget: God always provides for my family.


Thank you all for your comments. I will be the first that yes, maybe I over-reacted a little. But those of you that are fairly new to this blog need to realize there is history with ELF.

When we were 14 we went to camp together. I guess you could say we were "going out", whatever that means at that age. We lost touch over the years and then last August I found his blog. He was civil for the first few weeks and then he suddenly started throwing his views down my throat. He has been rude, crude and just a complete asshole. The only solution I found to this was to tell him maybe we should just forget we ever met up again. He agreed. But through the this past year he continues to stop in just to start shit. It's very typical of him to do this.

I realize there was no real threat (that he made) against our life. But would you want your blog linked to a website where the topic is "Executing gays to prevent the spread of disease"? I know I don't. I emailed ELF and simply told him "please take the link to my blog off your comment". There was no reason to put a link to my blog in his comment. He could have gotten his point out without linking it to my blog. I have no idea who will read his comments and I don't want people coming to my blog from that link. My wishes are very simple.

In our family Laura is known as the one that can express best through words. Here is her comment from my previous post.

Caroline and I had an extensive conversation regarding this particular comment and the link to the blog. Though neither of us believe we are in harms' way, the whole situation is irritating because of the numerous requests to simply go away. The blog where the link is provided is certainly not the traffic Caroline was expecting to attract with her everyday musings about our family. You'll note most of her entries are not so much political statements but more casual, mundane things common to anyone, regardless of sexuality. Yet, one of the great qualities of this country is the freedom of speech--used responsibly. I believe in this day and age to disseminate this kind of message, violence against any group, without the humanitarian plea for tolerance is abuse. Spread the word of understanding rather than, "Hey, in some places you'd be killed and it's okay in that culture." To this am I suppose to say thank you for sparing my life and I appreciate the bit of tolerance you've offered to placate me. Hardly. Laura

Enough said. Time to move on.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Threats Against Me and Laura

I noticed today on my counter that I have been getting a lot of hits from some odd website. I mean a lot of hits from this website, not just a few. What is disturbing is the article from this website that they are coming to my blog from. The article is here. The article talks about "executing gays to stop the spread of disease". I looked at the comments and found the gnat (aka ELF) is back and has linked my blog on his comment. Clink on the link and it's almost at the bottom and the comments were made by E.L. Frederick. What concerns me is he is pretty much putting a threat out there against my life and Laura's life.

This really worries me because I fear for the safety of my family. Why can't he just leave me alone. Even if he didn't do anything, he has proposed violence against us simply because we are gay and anyone else that is gay.

Any suggestions as to how to handle this situation would be more then welcome.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

The Stray Family

We have 5 indoor cats (I know it's way too many) and 3 that have "adopted" us that live outside. I have talked on several occasions about the 3 cats we refer to as "The Stray Family". There is Blacky who is the Dad, Betty (Laura calls her "whoa Black Betty Bamalam" after the song by the same title) who is the Mom and then the baby who we call Billy Joe. When I pull in at night the three of them are on our front steps waiting for me to feed them. Earlier this spring Blacky had a couple pretty bad wounds on his legs and I started feeding him moist cat food (along with dry cat food) to help those wounds heal. It worked great, but now I am obligated to feed them every night. Here are some pictures from this evening. I am sorry for some of them being blurry, but they just didn't want to sit still for pictures.

Blacky is the blur on the left and the one telling me "kiss my ass" is Billy Joe. I tried so hard to get his picture and he turned around and just sat there for a second. Damn teenagers.
Here is Blacky (left) and Billy Joe with the treats bag. I had already fed them when I decided to take some pictures. So I had to pull out the treats. I laid the bag on the ground and Blacky and Billy Joe proceeded to try to get the treats out themselves.

Here Blacky has successfully got the bag of treats up and is sticking his whole face in trying to get a treat.

Here is Betty, aka Momma. I am so used to calling her Momma that I usually just call her that. She has moved in under our front steps and I do believe she has had some more kittens. I am anxious to see the new babies.

Here is Blacky with our little dog statue. They have been so rough on this statue. One day we came home and found it in the neighbors yard. It used to have a welcome sign that hung from it's mouth, but they have torn it up completely.

Here is Betty (left) and Billy Joe. Billy Joe is playing with Betty's tail. Billy Joe never sits still and is always moving. He also loves the little pumpkin lights. We have come home to find a few of them knocked over. He shows very little respect for our items.

Last but not least: here is a picture of Ben. I read through some of my posts from April when he was lost for a week. Made me so thankful that he is home. Here is how we spend most of our evenings. He sleeps all day and when I get home he comes out for some loving. Do you notice the similarities between Ben and Blacky? Ben's father is Blacky. 5 years ago I managed to catch this cutie. I just love this little guy so much.

Changes & Interviews

I think my good eating habits are back on track this week. Last week was just too emotional for me to worry about Weight Watchers. I used to be addicted to Coke. I would have 3-4 a day. Since starting Weight Watchers I have been mainly drinking water. I have always loved ice cold water, but this past month I have grown to love it even more. It's amazing how the weight comes off when you are drinking enough water. I used to stop and get a Coke in the mornings and then I would drink it all through the morning and then in the afternoon switch to water. Now I start out with water and then maybe have a coke in the afternoon. I feel my focus is a lot better now that I am not drinking so much crap. Yesterday I drank water all day and then when I got home I opened a coke and drank maybe 3 sips and dumped it out. It just doesn't taste good to me anymore. Could this be true? Could I actually be tired of Coke. I know not drinking Coke is really helping my teeth as well. I am sure that is part of what contributed to my teeth going bad so quickly. I love going through the day, not drinking any Coke and getting no headaches. I feel so free of caffeine now.

Most days I bring a sandwich for lunch. Other days I opt for a Subway sandwich. Both are very low in fat and good for my new lifestyle. Today I was sitting and looking at my sandwich thinking "you just don't look good today". I got this overwhelming craving for a salad. I love my salads topped with lots of veggies. The more the better. As I walked out to drive up to the grocery store to get my salad it felt so great having a craving for something that was so good for me. This change feels so good.

Today we are starting the interviewing for Kristie's position. I continue to be shocked at some of the resumes that people send in. The social service field in Kansas City is so small. If you burn any bridges you can consider yourself done in this field. We got several resumes from people that one of us had heard something about and they didn't even have a chance with us. The lesson here: do not burn any bridges if you work in the social work field in Kansas City. We got a resume and are interviewing someone that is part of Promise Keepers. I was a little hesitant to interview this person because people in Promise Keepers are known for not being diverse. I hope that if this person is hired and is still very involved with Promise Keepers then there will be no problems with me being gay. Because then I might just have to kick some ass. There is nothing worse then having to work with someone that has a problem with what I do behind closed doors.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

New Look

I changed my template because honestly, I was so tired of looking at the same one day after day. Let me know how you like it. Next goal: create my own template. Don't hold your breath because it's going to take some time to figure that one out. Hopefully it will be about the time I get tired of this template.

Where it all began

Last night I had a pretty long conversation with Laura's older sister over IM. (have I told you how much I love our laptop today?) We were talking about something and I started talking about when Laura and I first got together. Brought back some great memories of that first summer we spent together.

Laura and I first met on May 7, 2004. It was three weeks later that we went out on our first date. During those three weeks from when we first met and our first date there were many nights spent on the phone. The first time we talked on the phone we were on the phone from 8pm until well after 2am. I remember being so nervous when she first called me. Our first date was on May 28, 2004, the day before my birthday. We went for a simple dinner and then back to (what was) my house to hang out. I remember it being a very nice evening and we ended up sitting out on the back deck until well after midnight. We were just talking and getting to know each other more. Our first kiss was on my birthday on the back deck. I will tell you this, that was the best birthday gift I ever received. Around 3am I decided it was probably best to get her home. It was a 30 minute drive to get her home, 30 minutes of saying goodbye and then 30 minutes to get back home. As we left the house she handed me a present and said to open it later in the day. When I pulled in the driveway I knew I was getting home too late because the paper had already been delivered.

By the time I got into bed it was 5am. I had to be up at 8am to go pick up one of my nephews to drive down to see my brother. I was looking at 4 hours on the highway. As I got on the road I put in the CD Laura had given me for my birthday. I instantly fell in love with this artist that I had never been that interested in. (more on the artist in the following weeks) As my nephew and I drove down to the lake where my brother was living I had this feeling that I knew my life would never been the same. Around 11am Laura called me on my cellphone to see how I was doing. I knew she wasn't even out of bed yet due to our late night. Oh and she called to officially wish me a happy birthday.

Once I arrived at my brothers I told them about this wonderful date I had. They were happy and supportive, but I would find that was short lived. Laura and I ended up talking on the phone that evening until something like 2am. I finally told her I had to get off the phone because I was exhausted. After staying up all night the previous night, driving 4 hours and then playing with my other 2 nephews (who were 2 and 1 at the time) I was about to drop.

The next afternoon I drove home. And of course most of the way talking with Laura. We spent all of Memorial Day together. That was when I first learned she did not like "On the Border" which is one of my favorite restaurants.

The next few weeks were filled with us getting to know each other and many more sleepless nights. I am not sure how I survived those first few weeks. I am the kind of person that needs at least 8 hours of sleep at night. I was living off maybe 4 or 5 hours of sleep a night. I guess I was living off pure adrenaline. It was wonderful.

In July I talked with Laura and told her that I really needed some sleep and the only solution I saw to that was her moving in. She agreed and the rest is history.

When I was married to my ex-husband I kept saying to myself, "this can't be all there is". I would say the same things when I was just dating people after my divorce. I never felt my life was complete in the love department. I was always searching for something else. I was not content. Laura has filled all those voids I was feeling. When we first got together everything around me disappeared and it was just the two of us there.

Laura and I have realized through our conversations that our paths crossed several times before we actually met. They crossed in 1995 when we were both working at the same mall. They again crossed in 2000 when she was living in the same apartment complex as someone I was dating.

We were meant to meet on May 7, 2004. It's such an amazing feeling to find the person you were always meant to be with.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Pictures of the Family

It's been a while since I have posted any pictures and I thought I would try it out with the new laptop, which by the way I love. Here are some pictures of the family from this past weekend when we got together to celebrate Laura's Dad's birthday.
Here are her parents, who by the way are celebrating their 38th anniversary this Thursday. They are such an inspirational couple whose main focus is and has always been their family.
Here's Laura's older sister and husband. I love this picture of sis's hubby. We need to work with older Sis smiling when we say, "say cheese".

Here is Laura's younger sister and hubby. Again another good picture of hubby, but obviously we really need to work on the sisters smiling when we are taking pictures, or at least paying attention.

Here is Laura just five minutes ago. She is in the middle of watching "Deal or No Deal" and reading a personality test to me. She is so good at multi-tasking.

Here is Brady in the bed that Lynilu gave us before she left. He is way too big for this bed, but he sleeps in it anyway. We are currently working on "sharing" with him. Ben has tried to sleep in it, but Brady thinks Lynilu gave it to just him. Our work never ends.

10 Weird Things

I got this from Ragged and thought I would share with all of you. Here are 10 weird things about myself:

1) My first concert was Whitney Houston. My parents surprised me when I got home from camp that year. I went with my Dad and I was mad because he made me wear a skirt to the concert. I felt so out of place, but did really enjoy the concert. It really helps when your Dad gets the concert tickets; we were in the 10th row.

2) I have a routine when I go to bed. It involves the following in no particular order: let the dog out, finish any dishes left in the sink, bring in the outside cats food, lock the garage door, turn off all computers, let the dog in, brush my teeth, shave my legs, take out my contacts, take my meds, count all the cats (this started after we lost Ben), and finally get into bed. Note: I am usually exhausted by the time I get into bed.

3) I love Barry Manilow. Ever since I was 10 I have loved his music. I remember saving up my money when I was 10 so I could go buy his new tape. I even belonged to his fan club and every month I would get my "Barry Gram". I have seen him in concert 6 times. Laura says she will never go see him in concert. I beg to differ.

4) While I was going through my divorce I lost my car. (ex husbands fault) My parents bought me a 1984 Cadillac. I drove that car for almost 2 years. I hated that car. About two weeks after I got it I put my window down to throw out my cigarette and the window wouldn't go back up. I had to drive 30 minutes on the highway in the middle of January, home. I was never so happy to get rid of that car.

5) 80% of my clothes are Eddie Bauer. I was nicknamed "Mrs. Eddie Bauer" at one of my jobs.

6) I've only broken one bone in my life and it was my middle finger. When I was 13 my brother was bugging me and I went to hit him and hit the door frame instead.

7) When I buy new clothes they usually have to hang in the closet for a few weeks before I will wear them. It's almost like I have to get used to them before I will wear them.

8) When I first got married I was a horrible housekeeper. I had someone stop by without any notice and I was so ashamed at how my house looked. I now keep my house clean all the time because you never know when someone will stop in. Our house has to be clean enough that if someone did just stop by I would not be embarrassed.

9) The dishwasher has to be loaded in a certain way. If Laura does the dishes I sometimes will go back and rearrange the dishes to how I like them to be.

10) I am obsessed with pens. I will take them if I like them even if they aren't mine. Just ask Lynilu how obsessed I am with them. If you don't know what to get me, a pen always makes me happy.

If you are reading this, consider yourself tagged.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Sunday's Thoughts

For some reason tonight I have really struggled with writing a post. I seem to have a million things I want to write about, but then I write them out and I don't like how it comes out. So I hit the delete button. Here are some of the things that I have been wanting to write about, but can't seem to get the words out right. Maybe if I put them in bullet form it will make more sense to me:

*I have been thinking a lot about my family lately. Laura's family got together on Friday night and it made me miss all the get togethers my family has. I still get very shy when I am around her family. I don't know why. I have been part of the family for two years, but the first ten minutes I am around the family it's like I am frozen with fear. I think I am afraid I am going to say something that they suddenly look at me like, "what the hell is she thinking?". From the outside looking in I appear to be a very shy person, but actually I am not shy. I could talk your ear off if I had the chance. I wish I could learn to relax around her family. I know they love and accept me, but I become so afraid of rejection again. There are a lot of things I miss about my family. When I didn't pass my test on Thursday I needed the comfort of a Mother. I just wanted my Mom to give me a hug and tell me everything would be ok. It's hard not having my Mom in my life. I would go to her so much for advice and emotional support. No matter how independent I become there are days when I still just miss having my Mom. She always seemed to know what to say to me to make me feel better.

*As much as I am happy that summer is gone it's depressing looking out at our backyard. Last weekend we took down all our summer decorations. We had all these cool signs that we bought in Florida last year. They always brought back memories of our perfect trip. As much as I love seeing the beautiful colors of leaves in the yard, it's sad knowing that summer is officially over now.

*I feel that I was ripped off this past weekend. Having had worked on Saturday I feel that I missed out on 1/2 my weekend. Laura and I really treasure our weekends together. It's our time to come together again as a couple. Yesterday the weather here was perfect for one of those days where you stay inside all warm and cozy watching movies.

*I skipped Weight Watchers yesterday. Because I had to work I didn't have enough time to make it in to weigh in. I am feeling guilty about that. I am also feeling guilty that I don't think I lost any weight this past week. The scale was reading the same thing this Saturday morning as it did last Saturday morning. Damn Zingers.

*I really want to get to the weight I was at in 1994. I have a hard time looking at myself in the mirror or pictures of myself. I think I look fat and disgusting. I wish it was jut as easy to loose weight as it is to gain it.

*In two weeks we are going down to Springfield, MO to see Kathy Griffin. It's going to be a fun night and I can't wait to see her perform in person.

Well, that's what's going on this Sunday night. I have another busy week. My boss and I have interviews scheduled this entire week. Looking through these resumes I really wonder what people are thinking when they send them in. For example: we had someone send in a resume and the email that she put on the resume was a very sexual meaning email. Come on people, use common sense. If you are sending a resume to a place you hope to get employed, set up a free email account that is professional looking not sleazy.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Welcome to the 21st Century

I decided at 8pm that I didn't want to wait for the Geek Squad to set up our wireless router. We got out the box (which said it would take just 20 minutes to set up) and proceeded to set up the router. Installing it on our main computer was no problem, but the laptop was a little more challenging. One phone call to tech support and here I am sitting on my couch, watching the evening news blogging. Wow. It is my dream come true.

And on the 7th day SHE rested...

Wow, what a whirlwind of a week this has been. I have been going nonstop since last Sunday and I am beyond exhausted. The week started out with being overloaded at work. With my favorite co-worker (ever) leaving and my boss going out of town for the week for a conference, left just me to take all the calls from individuals this past week. I also had someone start attending my pre-treatment group and I actually had clients show up for assessments. All this equals one busy worker. I was out of the office on Thursday (for my test) and then early Friday morning I had to be on the other side of town for a 8:30am meeting. This particular meeting lasted 4 hours. Once back to the office I checked my voice mail and had, get this, 18 new messages. It took me til I left at 4:00 to return all the calls.

Then Friday night the whole family got together to celebrate Laura's Dad's birthday. It was fun having everyone together. It took a lot to get everyone's schedule just right. After dinner and then some shopping afterwards, we didn't get home until close to 10pm.

Then this morning I had to be back at work at 9am for our staff/board retreat. I am still trying to figure why the staff was there. Most of what they were saying was way over my head. But the lunch was good. There were two board members that had hearing aids and they constantly said, "huh, can you speak up". I got tired of hearing them say that after the second time.

On my way to work I stopped for my morning bagel. It had been since Wednesday since I had had a bagel. My body was so desperately needing one. As usual I had no cash so I used my debit card. The lady told me it was saying, "over the limit". WHAT???? She tried it one more time and still nothing. Luckily I had my one credit card on me and used that. As soon as I got into my car I called the bank to check my balance. Our available balance was $410.00. I was thinking it must have been a computer error. I called Laura and she said she would check into it. At 10:30 when I was on my first break I called her and found out what was going on. We had bought our airline tickets with our debit card and they charged us for the tickets, plus the price of 4 more. Well, not charged us, but held the funds that would equal another $1200. WTF!!!! Well, the funds to the airline had already cleared so the bank quickly lifted the hold on those funds. Here are my concerns with that:
1) I had no idea that the airline could do that to our account
2) I had no idea they could legally hold onto more then what we charged

It's all cleared up now, but from now on any airline tickets will be bought with our regular credit card. We keep any money we know we aren't using in our savings for this exact reason. I would hate for the airline to get a hold of our money and then "forget" to credit us back.

Luckily Laura was available to take care of that this morning otherwise I would have been pissed having to wait until Monday to take care of this. I got out of my conference at 2pm and headed home.

Oh, one more thing: my boss was there today and I told him about the test results. I think he was a little disappointed, but not in me. He is upset that this test is made so hard that it's almost impossible to pass. He said he has never known anyone that has gotten above a 72. Makes NO sense to me. So it looks like I still have a job. Whew!!!

Now my weekend can officially start.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Retail Therapy

What's a girl to do when she is completely down about the not passing a very important test involving her job? Why go shopping!! Here are the things I bought today to help my hurting heart.

A new laptop. We have been talking about getting one and with Laura's new job she really needed one. We opted to buy the wireless kit so we can use the laptop anywhere. And for just $9 (normally $150) the Geek Squad will come out to install everything and hook both computers up, etc. So by next week I will be blogging from my couch. I can't wait.

I then opted for a snack that would fill the void of a passing test exam. Zingers did just that for me. After a casual lunch (which by the way was DELICIOUS) I decided that I needed something to snack on while watching Oprah. These hit the spot.
And finally, we bought our airline tickets for our trip to Florida in April. We checked on the prices a few weeks ago and the airline we took last April wanted $750 per ticket. Forget it. So we opted for an earlier flight, on a different airline and we get in an hour earlier then the original airline we looked at. Plus the price hit our checkbook just perfectly. Now that we have our airline tickets and our little cottage securely booked, it's all a go for Florida in April.
I have to say my day of retail therapy did me very well. I am already counting the days to the Florida vacation. One week on the beach with the warm sun and the love of my life next to me will be my perfect moment.


I needed a 70. Just four points away. I'm done. I'm spent.

Screw Weight Watchers today. I need some comfort food.

Now the hard part comes: telling my boss that I didn't pass the test AGAIN. I can't wait to see his expression.

Pray that I have a job come tomorrow morning.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Third Time is a Charm

I would love to say that my day got better yesterday, but I managed to drag my crappy attitude home; which didn't go over well at home. By 8pm I realized that I was doing no good and decided to keep my mouth shut. That was the best idea I had all day. Luckily today I am feeling better and feel I can take on the world again.

Tomorrow morning at 10am is my big Kansas Social Work license test. I work in Missouri, but we also have clients from Kansas. Kansas requires all social workers to have a license. I first went for my test in July 2005 and got 68. I needed 70. There are 150 questions so you know I was just 2-3 away. I had to wait 90 days to retake the test. I went back in October 2005 and got another 68. Each time I take the test it cost $175. My work paid for the first one, but since then I have had to pay the $175.

So tomorrow I will attempt this test for the third time. I took the practice test and missed just 9 out of 50. Not bad. But seriously, after 150 questions, they all start looking alike.

I am praying my little heart out that third time really is a charm.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Some Days I Just Want to Quit My Job

Today is one of those days. Most days I love my job, but today I am questioning my love for my job. Here are my reasons why I want to quit today:

* My agency belongs to a coalition and this morning was our monthly meeting. We have been talking about the same shit for the past year. It's a waste of two hours every month when nothing gets solved and we continue to debate how to change how we are doing things. Either change it or shut the fuck up.

*When I came back to the office I was questioned by someone as to if I was really at that meeting. WTF????? My boss was sitting right next to me. If you have a problem with me being gone this morning, then check with him. Otherwise, shut the fuck up.

*I was told by the producer of the radio show I did last week that the show was at 7am. Turns out it was actually 6am. I emailed the producer to ask if I could get a copy of the show. I can for the price of $20. Excuse me...I took the time out of my day to go do your radio show. At least give me a copy for no charge especially when you told me the wrong fucking time.

*My phone is ringing off the hook with calls from the same people that called me six months ago saying they had to get in immediately. If you can't make your appointment then please call me and if you miss your appointment and then call me six months later because the judge is going to throw your ass in jail because you haven't done what you are suppose to; please shut the fuck up. Remember: lack of planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on my part.

Please God, let tomorrow be better.

Monday, October 16, 2006

"There's a tear in my beer"-Hank Williams

Today has been so sad in my office. My co-worker Kristie put in her two weeks notice and last Friday was her last day. Kristie and her husband are moving back to Oklahoma. I have worked with Kristie for the past year and it has been a barrel of laughs the entire time.

Working with addicts can be very frustrating and sometimes you just have to laugh when you really want to cry. Just when you think you are getting through to someone the drug keeps calling them back. So just like the addict, working with them can have many ups and downs.

I think Kristie and I bonded from the very beginning. She has such a quirky sense of humor you can't help but laugh sometimes. She was one of the hardest workers I have worked with. Not too many people volunteer to take an assessment for you just because. We have a lot of down time at our job and there were many days when the only thing that got me through the day (besides all your blogs of course) were the countless emails Kristie and I sent back and forth to each other. We really had some good times and some good laughs.

When we would come in the morning she would always ask how my night or weekend was. It was a rude awakening this morning when there was no one there to ask how my weekend went. The rainy weather this morning matched my mood perfectly.

My boss and I are completely in mourning with Kristie's departure. Going through the resumes that are coming in for Kristie's position just reminds us how lucky we were to have her work with us for the past year.

Kristie started out as a co-worker, but she has left as my friend. The person that will fill her position has huge shoes to fill and I think they will find it close to impossible.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

$$$Feeling Lucky?$$$

Well, I was feeling lucky until we went to the casino. Actually I didn't do that bad. It was Laura that was struggling today. We went with the same amount of money and (as always) we said when we are done with that money, then we are done for the day. I play the slots (25 cents) and Laura plays blackjack. I was down to my last $20 when I hit a small jackpot. I won 288 tokens and with the ones I had I had close to 400 tokens. Laura came over and asked for some money. I gave her mine and she asked (well told is more like it) to go get some more money out of the ATM. I hate getting money out at the casino because they charge you something like $4 just to get money. What a rip off. So, I took out some money and went to the 50 cent machines. I instantly was up to $120. I played for another 2 hours and when it was all said and done we were both broke, as usual. But we had fun. We went with her parents and it was a blast watching them play. At the end her Mom said, " we are down to our last few dollars AND we are at the penny slots." Enough said. It was now time to eat.

Unlike Vegas where buffets are cheap, the buffets in Kansas City are not cheap. I think for the two of us it was $33. I had only had some oatmeal for breakfast and a banana so I was literally starving. The doctors have been adjusting my meds and if I don't eat every 3-4 hours I get dizzy and a headache. About an hour before we quit I noticed I was a little dizzy and I had a horrible headache coming on. Once we sat down I was more then ready for our meal. Laura kept calling it "linner". Which meant lunch/dinner "don't ask me to cook tonight". I think my stomach is shrinking because I was full after my first trip. My headache instantly went away.

This is a busy week for us. On Thursday I am going for my Kansas Social License. I guess third time is a charm. Then Friday the whole family is getting together for Laura's Dad's birthday. Getting the whole family together is sometimes very challenging. Then Saturday I have to work (crap!!!) since we are having an all agency retreat. Saturday night we are going down to the country for a hayride. Apparently this one is pretty scary and I am kind of scared myself.

Have a great week everyone. Wish me lots of luck on Thursday for my test.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

It's the Weekend

My visit yesterday to the dentist was, well, typical. They put me on the gas, which I think wasn't turned up enough because I was just a little bit relaxed, not the typical I am in a another world feeling. They started drilling away at my cavities when BAM I felt pain. They gave me another shot and then another BAM I still feel the pain. They informed me that this tooth was past the point of needing a cavity and yep you guessed it, another root canal. This will be my third since July. They proceeded to fill the other 3 and give me my referral and send me on my way. I can not tell you how much I don't want another root canal. After a root canal my mouth is sore for a week and that always means a crown as well. Luckily I am not feeling as down with this one. Last time I was worried about the expenses that comes with a root canal. Yes I am still a little worried because it's another $910 (root canal + crown), but with two incomes now I feel it's a more manageable without digging deeper into our savings.

This morning we went to Weight Watchers. I have lost another amazing 3.6lbs. Can you believe that?? I have never lost this much weight in three continuous weeks. I am pretty proud of myself. And this week was a tough one. Two luncheons plus a couple emotional eats I was sure that I had just lost a pound or so. Really shows that by us adjusting our menu when we eat more at lunch is working. Laura lost an amazing 4lbs as well. Go Laura. This is the first time that I have been eating a very healthy diet as well as taking my diabetes meds on a daily basis, so I am sure that has a lot to do with it as well. Since going to Weight Watchers 3 weeks ago I have lost 9lbs total. And this is just the beginning.

Tomorrow Laura and I are going to the casino with her parents. I simply can't wait. My downfall when it comes to spending money in useless places is the casino. Hopefully with her parents there I will watch myself a little more. I am hoping for the big win, but Laura reassures me once again I will just be donating money to the casino. A girl can still wish.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Radio Star & New Job

It's been an exciting day. First of all, I went to a local radio station today and taped a show that will air on Sunday morning at 7am. I spoke about addiction and how it affects the entire family and how to help someone you love that has a problem with drugs or alcohol. I was so nervous before going, but once I started talking I forgot that I was on the radio. I think I felt better knowing it was taped. I knew if I made a huge mistake like dropping the F bomb then we could start over. (not that I would drop the F bomb in a business setting) They make you wear headphones so you can hear the conversation. About 1/2 through talking I heard this voice and was like, "who is that?" I quickly realized it was myself talking. I hate my voice. So if you are in the Kansas City area this Sunday and are awake at 7am you can listen to my interview on 97.3. I hope I remember to set the alarm to get up and listen to is. When I left they said I did a great job, but we'll see when I actually hear myself talking on the radio.

Due to budget cuts in the school systems (I hate our current Governor), Laura's job was cut in May. We knew in April that she probably wasn't going to get a contract. She decided that being in the classroom wasn't where she wanted to be right now. She felt her skills could be used in so many other places. We knew she was going to get paid through the end of August, so we budgeted very well to allow this. I told her to take time in looking for another job. With our savings we were more then OK. Well, I am happy to announce that Laura was hired today by a company to write grants. It's a salaried position plus she negotiated to get 2% of the grants she gets. Not too bad. Those could be some real nice bonuses in the future. But here's the best part: She gets to work at home. How cool is that. I am so proud of her.

Tomorrow I take my (what seems like) millionth trip back to the dentist. I am just getting 4 cavities filled so it shouldn't be that bad. When I made this appointment two weeks ago I knew it was going to be Friday the 13th and I debated about changing it. But here I am the night before my appointment and it's still scheduled. Guess I will have to go. I am sure with all my visits to the dentist I have sent his family on some nice vacations or at least paid for a couple of the kids to get braces.

I got my blood work back from my doctors appointment on Monday. Nothing but good news. My cholesterol was 84 (down from 200), and my sugars were 5.8 (down from 6.9). My sugars are suppose to be below 6, so those .2 points make a huge difference. They already cut all my meds in 1/2, so maybe by January the meds will be lowered even more. It feels so good to be eating well and taking good care of my body.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

From the Past

There are certain days when I hear a song and think back to the days that seemed so simple. My only worry was having enough daylight to play oustide with my friends, will I get to play tetherball today, etc.

Today I found one of my all time favorite songs on Youtube. I love this song. I have talked about it before and Laura and I have even said this is one of our songs. It's one that if you do hear it on the radio (the Oldies station) you sing at the top of your lungs when you hear it. Upon watching this clip on youtube I noticed some similiarities in the female singer and myself when I was a child. Here are the pictures of me as a child and then a link to the song. Tell me if you see the similiarties.
I am the little blonde on the far right side. Notice the hairstyle that I have. This picture was probably taken in 1980.

Here I am with my brother and cousins. I am the one with her arms folded smiling. Again, notice the hairstyle. This picture was probably also taken around 1980.

Now here's the clip of the song. Please feel free to sing out loud when you hear this song. I promise you will feel so much better after singing the song.

National Coming Out Day 2006

In celebration of National Coming out Day I decided to delight my readers with my personal "coming out" story. I think I have shared bits and pieces, but never the whole story in one piece.

Growing up I knew about gays, but it was never an option for me. I would go to summer camp during the summers when I was young and I remember thinking "I wonder what I would do if another girl flirted with me?" I was told that I was suppose to like boys and eventually get married and have kids. Again there were no option but to do that. I wouldn't say that I was boy crazy in high school, but I did have boyfriends. Once I entered into college I still dated boys. Then in 1994 my best friend from high school told me about this thing called email. My family had a computer and I signed up for Prodigy. That is where I met my ex-husband. Long story short, we chatted for months and months and then ended up getting married.

I was miserable in this marriage. When we got married I was wearing a size 12. Six months after we got married I had gained 40lbs. I hated this life that I had created. I remember working with this guy that was gay and he had moved to Kansas City from small town in Missouri and I remember thinking, "I love how he is doing what his heart is telling him to do."

After I got my bachelors degree I started working at a particular social service agency. I loved working there. About 3 months after I started working there I met this lady that worked as a social worker for the state. I instantly felt something that I had never felt before. It was the most wonderful feeling I had ever felt. I did anything to be around this person. We would hang out after work and talk on the phone. But I was still married. I was so torn as to what to do. Plus being a Jehovah's Witness made it even more difficult. I remember telling my ex-husband about having feelings for this woman and he was very upset. His way of dealing with it was hooking up with another woman. I was just friends with this woman and nothing physical had happened. Within a few months my ex and I decided that this marriage wasn't working and we should probably go our separate ways.

At this time I was working with this girl at my job who was married. I talked to her one day about the feelings I was having for this other woman. She became a really good friend to me. One day after work I took her home and next thing I know she was kissing me. This was the first time I had kissed a woman. I immediately knew this was who I was. Kissing this person felt so right. I had never felt that kissing a guy.

After ex left I thought I knew what I wanted. I had just been kicked out of the church for the first time and I was dating a woman that I met online. I liked this woman, but it didn't feel like forever. We lasted just a few months.

After that I was very confused and went back and forth between men and women. My heart was telling me that I was gay, but then the church was telling me that I was wrong and that a life as a gay person is wrong. I just didn't know what to do.

This confusion led to depression. In the whole process of me trying to figure out who I was I went back and got my masters. After I got out of school with my masters I was pretty sure that I was gay. Then in the fall of 2002 I crashed big time. I was depressed and had a full breakdown. If it weren't for Lynilu and her late husband I don't know if I would be here. I just didn't want to live if I had to live my life as a straight Jehovah's Witness.

For two years (2002-2004) I didn't date anyone. In July 2003 I lost my job and spent 6 months on unemployment. During that six months I healed my soul. When I went back to work at the end of 2003 I was so much better mentally. For the first time in my life I felt content with where I was. It was then that God sent me the love of my life.

May 7, 2004 Laura came into my life. 3 weeks later we had our first date. We have never been apart since then.

My parents knew instantly that something was different since I was not calling them as much and I was not available to be their little servant. Finally on July 4, 2004 I told my parents that I was gay. That was the last time that I had any kind of conversation with my parents.

I have no regrets for living my life for me. Those times when I was alone wishing that I had someone to share my life with I had in my mind what I wanted that person to be. Laura meets and exceeds all those expectations.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Car Rides & Odd Blogs

This is going to be a tough week for eating healthy. Yesterday I took a co-worker to lunch since Friday is her last day. We went to a local burger joint (aka grease joint) for lunch. I opted for the Gyro instead of a cheeseburger. I think that was an excellent choice given my options. I will tell you it was one of the best Gyro's I have ever had. When I told Laura what a Gyro was she was shocked that I would eat Lamb. I tried to explain to her that I wasn't eating Little Bo Peep flock, but she has no desire to try one. For dinner we had a salad to make up for all the points I used at lunch. Tomorrow is an all staff lunch for this co-worker and we are having the best Chinese in Kansas City. Next to Mexican food, Chinese is my favorite food. It's going to be a tough week, but mighty tasty.

Sophie-dog is recovering very nicely from our camping trip. Before this camping trip she LOVED car rides. Well, she liked the idea of going for a car ride. Once in the car she would start shaking, etc. Since we've been home I have said to Sophie in my very excited voice, "You wanna go for a car ride?" Sophie looks at me and then runs upstairs to the bedroom. I think she has gotten "you wanna go for a car ride" and "time for bed" all confused.

In my attempt to entertain myself at work I have found this whole world of blogs that are devoted to the die hard Christians that are raising little baby making factories. Many of the girls that are not married and still living at home call themselves "stay at home daughters". Huh? They have decided at the young ages of 13, 14 and so on to be Mothers and wives. They feel that their goal in life is to be a Mother and to take care of every need that their husband has. They believe in the view that they will have as many kids as God provides. Which turns into very large families. It's not uncommon for these families to have 9, 10, or more kids. They depend on the older kids (the girls) to "raise" the younger ones. Really, when you have 10 kids can you really devote a lot of time and attention to them. And how fair is it that you are responsible for raising your siblings. The women are allowed to only wear skirts, no jeans or pants allowed since this is considered not modest for women. There really are some unique people out there. You know I grew up with just one brother. Even with just two kids I know there were times when my parents didn't have as much time to spend with us on a individual basis. I can't imagine trying to squeeze in enough time for 10 kids.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Orinial Menu VS Actual Menu

On Friday I posted what our menu was for the weekend. We didn't stick to that exactly, but we were pretty close. Here is the menu I said we were sticking to on Friday and then below is the actual menu:

Original Menu:

Tonight dinner: Chicken breast sandwich (good)
Breakfast tomorrow: Pop Tarts (not bad, but not too good)
Lunch: Subway sandwich (very good), Cheetos Puffs (not good)
Dinner Tomorrow: Hot dogs roasted on the fire (not good, but a lot of fun)
Desert: Smores (not good)
Breakfast: Pop Tarts (not good)

Actual Menu:

Friday Dinner: Chicken breast sandwich
Friday evening snack: 1 Pop Tart
Breakfast Saturday: Sausage biscuit and 3 small donuts. Note: We got up Saturday morning and needed fire wood and decided it was way too cold to have cold pop tarts. And the hot sausage biscuits were just too tempting. While we were paying we noticed a package of 6 small chocolate donuts. We figured it wasn't that bad if we split it.
Lunch Saturday: Subway Sandwich and Cheetos Puffs
Dinner Saturday: Hot dogs roasted on the fire. Note: they were as good as we remembered them to be
Desert Saturday: Smores. OH-MY-GOD it was delicious. Just one was enough for both of us.
Sunday Breakfast: Again too cold for a cold pop tart so we had breakfast at Sonic on the way home

We got a lot of exercise while we were there. Walking the dog, chasing her around and rescuing her from the "big bad dog leash". I don't know how many times she wrapped herself around the tree 3 times and you could see she was struggling. Sometimes she is so smart and then other times I wonder what she thinks.

So all of this burned off calories. We actually think we did pretty good for the weekend. We could have done a lot worse.

This morning I had my regular 3 month visit at the doctor. I am down 8 lbs from when I was there in August and 1 lb from when I weighed in at Weight Watchers on Thursday. Not bad if I say myself. My doctor was very happy that I started Weight Watchers. I kept telling her how just the little bit of weight that I have lost has made a huge difference with my back. My blood pressure was 110/80, which is excellent. They of course took a bunch of blood work to see what my sugar levels are. I should have the results in about 3 days.My doctor was impressed that when I am checking my sugars they are very low. After a meal they should be below 180 and mine have been coming in under 100. She actually was a little concerned and cut my diabetes medicine in half saying that if I keep up the weight loss I will probably be off all meds in six months. YEA for me.

I really think we had the last weekend for nice weather. Woke up this morning to a very cold house, so the heat is again back on. Watching the weather last night they were saying that Thursday morning we should have our first freeze. It's suppose to rain on Wednesday and they said if it is still raining come Thursday morning then we could have flurries. I can't believe it was 85 yesterday and now they are talking about flurries.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Camping through the eyes of Sophie

What a wonderful weekend we had. We couldn't have asked for better weather. I will admit it got a little bit more chilly at night then we had expected. We were thinking it would get down in the low 50's, when actually the lows were in the mid 40's. A little chilly, but we realized that our sleeping bags work wonderful in the cool weather. We had also planned ahead and brought a couple extra blankets that worked great. But I don't think I will ever get used to going to the bathroom in the middle of the night in 45 degree weather. Yes there was a bathroom, but there was no heat and the toilet seat was mighty cold.

This was Sophie-dogs first camping trip. We weren't too sure how she would react or act, but she did so well. We had the best time with her along. We felt safer in the tent at night knowing that nothing would be able to come close without us knowing. For example: the first night we were one of the only campers in our part. There was a couple across the way, but they were in a camper. About 2:30am we heard 3 loud knocks. The dog sat up like, "don't worry girls I will protect you." We decided that it was probably someone out in a boat. That night we also heard what sounded like a huge pack of wild dogs just barking like crazy. About hearing a shot gun and then the barking stopping we came to the conclusion that someone was out coon hunting. (Thank God for the book "Where the Red Fern Grows" or I wouldn't have known what was going on) The second night there were more people in the campground so we all (the dog included) slept better.

We decided to share our pictures through the eyes of Sophie.

Here she is 1/2 way to the campsite. Obviously she is trying to tell us "I need to go to the bathroom NOW". One quick potty stop and we were on our way again.
Here Sophie is wondering where the hell we are going. Keep in mind the longest car ride she had been on before was 30 minutes. As she is looking out the window I am sure she is seeing her life flash before her eyes.

Here is our campfire the first night. By 7pm it was getting pretty chilly. Sophie was a little upset with the wind because it kept blowing smoke in her face. By the end of the trip she was part black and part ash.

"You want me to sleep where?" Once she found out that we were actually going to be sleeping outside she wasn't too thrilled. Having just shaved her 3 weeks ago she wondered if we were trying to kill her. One beach towel later and she was all cozy that night. We decided we are going to buy her a sweatshirt for the next time we go when it's cool. She is really not used to the cool weather.

Another first for Sophie: being tied to a tree. When let out on her own she turns into a Greyhound. We got a dog chain and tied it around a tree. It took her a while to get used to it and now has a mild case of whiplash from running not realizing she was tied down.

The ride home. Getting into the car to go home I swear she was smiling. Within one mile of driving off she was out like a light.
All in all it was a wonderful weekend. Last night we sat around the campfire from 4pm until 9pm. There was no wind and we just sat around and talked. It's one of my favorite grown up memories.

Friday, October 06, 2006

We're Getting Out of Dodge

This weekend we are off to go camping. We held our breath earlier this week because it got cold again and we had to turn the heat back on. Luckily it has warmed up and we should have perfect temps and weather.

We are all packed and just waiting for my day at work to be over. I emailed my boss asking him if I could leave a little early since we are going camping and we really want to set up our tent before dark. I am hoping he will read my email and feel sorry for us having to set the tent up in the dark if I stay until the end of the day.

Last night I went to Weight Watchers for my weekly weight in. Not only was it 2 days earlier then I was suppose to go, but I was going in the evening instead of the morning. I still lost .6 lbs. Not as much as I wanted, but the lady reassured me that she is sure I lost more since I was coming in the evening and in my work clothes. She said that there can be as much as 2 lbs difference from your weight in the morning and the night. Whew. I got on the scale this morning and it was 3 lbs lighter then when I went in yesterday.

We decided that this weekend we are not going to follow our new lifestyle completely. Here is our menu for this weekend:

Tonight dinner: Chicken breast sandwich (good)
Breakfast tomorrow: Pop Tarts (not bad, but not too good)
Lunch: Subway sandwich (very good), Cheetos Puffs (not good)
Dinner Tomorrow: Hot dogs roasted on the fire (not good, but a lot of fun)
Desert: Smores (not good)
Breakfast: Pop Tarts (not good)

Oh well. Thankfully we have 6 days until we go back to Weight Watchers next Saturday. I am sure we will burn lots of calories chasing the dog around, tending to the fire, and of course the dreaded trips to the bathroom. If the temps drop too much at night we will burn calories shivering as well.

Hope everyone has a great weekend and I will be back to bloggerland with lots of pictures of our adventure on Sunday.

**Update 11:15am***
Just got an email from boss saying I could leave at 2pm. Looks like we will be able to set the tent up in daylight and enjoy the campfire this evening instead of unpacking.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

More Random Stuff

13 Random Things You Like:
1) Laura
2) Chocolate Milk (hate plain milk)
3) Dragonflies
4) The color Navy Blue
5) My Honda Accord
6) The beach
7) Snowy Days
8) Music
9) Pens (I collect all kinds of pens and have been known to take the pen they give you when you sign your credit card at restaurants)
10) All my pets (Sophie-cat, Sophie-dog, Brady, Ben, Bonk and Astro)
11) The number 11
12) Sheets just out of the dryer
13) Campfires

12 Movies
1) The Prince of Tides
2) Notting Hill
3) Brokeback Mountain
4) What About Bob?
5) The Family Stone
6) The Green Mile
7) 50 First Dates
8) The Perfect Storm
9) Steel Magnolias
10) The Horse Whisperer
11) American History X
12) On Golden Pond

10 Things About You
1) I was adopted when I was 3 days old
2) I am double jointed in my hands and arms
3) I had surgery on my right hand when I was 12 and now have a huge scar on my wrist
4) I was married for 5 1/2 years
5) I don't speak to my ex husband
6) I really want to be a Mother someday
7) I take a lot of pictures
8) It only takes me 30 minutes to get ready in the morning (shower included)
9) I was never overweight until I got married
10) I miss my nephews that I don't see

9 People You Talked to Yesterday
1) Laura
2) Sophie-dog
3) Kristie
4) My boss
5) My boss' boss
6) The cute little gay boy at the bagel shop
7) My neighbor
8) God
9) An addict

8 Favorite Foods
1) Bagels
2) Mexican Food
3) McDonald's Cheeseburgers
4) Chips & Salsa
5) Hot dogs
6) Chinese food
7) Seafood
8) 100 Grand Candy Bar

7 Things You are Wearing
1) Shirt
2) Pants
3) Croc Shoes (God, I love these shoes)
4) Bra
5) Underwear
6) Ring
7) Nothing else

5 Things You Touch Everyday
1) Laura
2) My hair
3) The dog and cats
4) The dishwasher
5) My keyboard

4 Shows You Watch
1) The King of Queens
2) ER
3) The Amazing Race
4) Cold Case

3 Favorite Actors/Actress
1) The lady from Cold Case (can't remember her name)
2) Sarah Jessica Parker
3) Mark Walberg

2 Most Recent People You've kissed
1) Laura
2) Sophie-dog

One Person You Could Spend Your Life With
1) Laura

I am not tagging anyone, but anyone that wants to do this, please do. I love reading all the lists.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

My God is Love

Up until thirty minutes ago, today was a struggle. I have heard through the grapevine some of the hurtful things my family (mainly my Mom) are saying about me. It really tears at my heart when I hear these things knowing that they are not true and more importantly that they are coming from my own Mother. The person that raised me from the time I was just 3 days old. No matter how much I try to push it off, it still hurts. A lot.

I have tried several times to meet my parents in the middle and try to find some kind of middle ground, but they refuse and a lot of times are mean about it. I wrote my Mother and email last week telling her that I did love her and my Dad (and I made sure she knew I wanted her to tell my Dad hello as well) and that I was hoping we would find the middle ground sometime. No response. But that is normal. I don't even know if she reads these emails. I would think she would. I know I would if this was my child reaching out to me. Then to hear the things she is saying about me just really hurt. My hurt then turns into anger, which we all know gets me nowhere.

So this evening after we had dinner I went out and sat on my front steps. Laura had decided to go in the backyard, but I went in the front to play with the little stray kitty. I was out there for about ten minutes when my neighbor that lives right across from us came out with his 9 year old son. I could tell he was walking towards our house and I said "hello" to him. Here is the conversation we had:
Me: Hello
Neighbor: Hi. How are you doing this evening?
Me: Good, how about you?
Neighbor: Just fine. Hey do you think I am a good neighbor?
Me: Yes, very much so. (he really is a great neighbor)
Neighbor: Well, don't you think good neighbors should help each other?
Me: Yes I do
(By this point he is standing on the front steps right next to where I was sitting)
Neighbor: Well, I wanted to come over here tonight to share something with you. I was at church on Sunday and while I was praying your face kept coming to me. The Lord was telling me something. He wanted to tell me that He Loves You so much.
(at this point I was completely in shock)
Neighbor: We are told to witness to our neighbors and God has wanted me to come to you and be sure to tell you and make you realize that God Does Love You. It doesn't matter who you are or what you do, He Loves You.

Right before my eyes God is telling me that He does love me. What do you say? Needless to say I was speechless. I didn't know what to say. I explained to my neighbor how I really needed to hear this today. He then went on to tell me that the members of his church were given this assignment to go tell others (with no conditions of coming to church, etc) that God loves them. He said he had done that, but then on Sunday while he was praying I kept coming to him and he knew he had to come over here and tell me that God did Love Me.

The Jehovah's Witnesses do not love me. In fact, they despise me. How can you love God when you are openly hating others, especially those in your family. I just don't get it. The last conversation I had with my Mother was on the telephone. It was September 2004. Her last words to me were " I HATE YOU" and then she hung up. I have not talked with my Mom since that day. How can she love God, but hate her own child? For me, it takes up a lot more engery to hate then to love.

Despite what my family thinks God does still love me and He does take care of me. Just because I have taken a different path then them they feel that it's the wrong path. They don't understand that there are many roads and one destination.

I love my family. Since leaving the Jehovah's Witness religion I have learned what love really is. No matter what they do or say, I still love them. God is love and that is how we should treat others, especially those that hate us.

I don't know about my family, but my God is Love.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Did We Go Too Far?

As many of you know I was denied the chance of celebrating any holidays when I was a child. This has led to a small problem as an adult. I tend to go overboard with the holidays. For example: here is our house all decked out for Halloween. I blame this obsession on the Jehovah's Witnesses.
This is our spider "George". We spent the entire evening "stuffing" his body and legs with all the newspaper that was to go out on Friday for recycling.
I love this shot of the pumpkins when they are all lit up. I wish we could find more of these to line our whole path.

Our blowup for Halloween. The bat is suppose to go up and down but we aren't smart enough to figure out how this happens.

Here is "Marcus the Carcass". He was the first Halloween decoration I bought two years ago. I usually have him lined up better. He looks better when it's dark outside cause he lights up.

Here's picture of most of the front. I love the little ghosts on the tree.
This evening as we were sitting down to dinner we heard some commotion outside. There were 2 kids standing at our front door. They wanted to know if "Marcus the Carcass" came up out of the ground. I told them to be sure to come back on Halloween.
Gee, I can't wait til Christmas. Our house will look like the house in National Lampoons Christmas.