Category Archives: Life

25 things

My sister tagged me on facebook with this “25 random things” list.  I told her I wasn’t doing it, but I just didn’t want to do it on facebook.  So I’ll do it here.  Yes, my facebook page links to my blog, but you know how facebook is.  Unless you self-promote yourself via your feed, no one bothers to look on your page.  So there’s less of a chance all those random colleagues I have as friends on facebook will find this.  I’ll start with the reason I have never done one of these things.  But rules first:

If you you get this, you are supposed to write a note with 25 random things, facts, habits, or goals about you. At the end, choose 25 people to be tagged. You have to tag the person who tagged you. If I tagged you, it’s because I want to know more about you.

(To do this, go to “notes” under tabs on your profile page, paste these instructions in the body of the note, type your 25 random things, tag 25 people (in the right hand corner of the app) then click post.)

Obviously, I’m not on facebook.

1)  I hate memes.  Why?  B/c they scream “look at me, I want to talk about me!”  (verses the narcissism of blogging..? I know.)  I’m not judging you, this is my problem.  I hate overt displays of ego.  Which leads me to:

2)  This girl I used to work with would come up to me and go on and on about the guys that would hit on her.  Either on the bus, on myspace, at the gym…  She only did this to me and I couldn’t stand her while everyone else loved her.  I didn’t understand why she did it, and it made me feel like shit.  Too much ego in my face.  I was so happy when she left, but I couldn’t let anyone at work know that.

3) That guy I briefly left boy for was the same way and I dread running into him because it’s a 5 minute brag session before getting in the last breath”and how are you?”  And just like with the other girl, I feel like shit afterwards.  I just don’t get it.

4) I’m trying to get over this by not being afraid to toot my own horn (and I’m not talking about flatulence.)

5) Although, while we’re on the subject of flatulance and tooting my own horn… well, enough said.  Boy can back me up on that one.

6) And also, since I made a B in physics when I was SERIOUSLY convinced I was going to fail, I now have it in my head it’s very possible I could be a medical physicist.  So I’ve been reading this physics theory book and actually really enjoying it in a sci-fi kind of way.

7) I’m by myself on a Friday night in my apartment watching Ghost Whisperer and getting scared.

8) I’m worried I won’t make it to 25.

9) I was afraid of the dark until the age of 17.  I always had nightlights.

10) I still have the blanket.  It stays under my pillow.

11) I can’t believe I just admitted that.

12) Part of keeping that blanket so close is sentimental value.  My grandmother made it.  She died before I was born.  Sometimes its absence in the middle of the night can still send me into a panic.

13) Obviously, I’m very insecure.

14) Insecurity also makes me overly proud and stubborn as hell.  My mother will gladly testify to this as I have pulled those 2 traits out on her one too many times.

15) Look!  I’m at 15!

16) Sometimes I sit at work and worry about Jack.  I also worry that I won’t cope very well if something ever happens to him.  It’s embarassing to admit the amount of attachement I have to my dog.  But I will say he got me through some of the toughest times I have had in my adult life.

17) No one could ever take care of me like boy does.  I don’t say it enough because after exposing too much of our break up on here I’ve been more protective of what I do say.  But it’s true.  He’s my best friend and then some.

18) I find 20-something blogs I like and start commenting and following them on twitter to establish an online social network.  I recently had to unfollow someone completely because she got engaged and started going on and on about offering advice on how to find “the one” and how to have a good relationship and how to live a better life (she doesn’t read my blog, I’m pretty sure I know who reads this.)  I found it not very genuine, overly optimistic, and it annoyed the crap out of me.  It felt like high and mighty self-branding.  Should I feel bad about this?

19) I could talk forever about the importance of eating healthy.  Bottom line is I don’t, I mean I do, often, but oh, I don’t.  This back and forth pattern, eat healthy, eat a whole pan of brownies, probably puts me at a very high risk for an eating disorder.  I am very conscious of my weight (my grandfather has always asked about my weight and my mom compared my body type to Tonya Harding when I was a ballerina then later called her a cow on ice.  Not blaming, just sayin’…)  Most important part is that I don’t have an eating disorder and never have, but it’s a constant uncomfortable unease with my body and diet that I really hate.  Ooooh, what it is to be a girl.

20) My one big regret was quitting ballet too soon.  I developed a woman’s body earlier than the other ballerinas and was put in the class with the older girls, but I didn’t have the emotional capacity to deal with the weight factor.

21) I want to be a doctor more than I let people know.  I can’t wait until medical school.  I get very excited talking about it.

22) I’m pretty sure I still have friends that doubt my ability to do this.  I don’t know if they realize saying things like “some of us just don’t have the aptitude” in response to my struggles with physics is pretty transparent in how you think I’ll do.

23) And nannannabooboo, I did well in physics so in your face.

24) I’m going to meet boy and a friend at dinner now.  They went to see a scary movie.  I don’t do scary movies.  I’m too sensitive.

25) And I don’t plan on washing my hair or getting out of my jeans and tee shirt anytime soon.

Did it!

The End.

And all my readers who have blogs need to do the same.  Wandering Bella, The Blonde, The Purposefully Content, The IT Girl, and everyone else.  kthxbye.

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the rest of what I wanted to say about my Tahoe adventure

On the train ride to the airport hours before our plane ride to Hawaii, boy turned to me and said, “you realize if we don’t have fun on this trip we’re breaking up.”  My jaw dropped to the floor before I started cracking up laughing.  Because it was so true.  Really, if you can’t have fun in Hawaii with your significant other, there’s a BIG problem.  Fortunately, we didn’t run into that problem.

Tahoe proved no different.  I’ve never felt resentment of going some place spectacular and missing out on something I thought was awesome because he wasn’t in the mood to go to the top of a mountain or go down the 2.5 mile trail one more time.  We’re good travel mates.  And if you’ve ever traveled with someone who gets whiny and in a grumpy funk over one bad meal or a lack of ability to make a decision about what to do next, then you know how nice it is to have a travel partner that matches your pace and priorities perfectly.

In between the most awesomest snowboarding, I snowshoed twice a day with Jack.  When we arrived the owners’ yellow lab, Kona, came up to the driver side door to greet us and Jack went nutso.  I think Jack thought this whole vacation was for him (you know, because that Chem and Physics final stressed him out so much.)  He hopped onto the bed right away and sprawled out before we took him on an evening romp through the snow.

I took Jack snowshoeing in the mornings by myself not so much because boy has a problem with snowshoeing as much as he has a problem with mornings (he works at 5am, so any chance he gets he sleeps in.)  I can’t explain what I like about snowshoeing without getting super excited and cheesy, so here goes…  I took over 100 pictures that first morning out there by myself.  Being out there in the woods with the snow killing all the sounds around so I all I heard was the crunch crunch of my snowshoes kept a smile on my face.  I wanted to capture the glitteryness of everything.  Jack could go anywhere he wanted but mainly stayed at my heels because he got wobbly legs where the icy surface tension wouldn’t hold him above the snow.  Maybe partly because the air was so thin, but it was so clean – a combination of which could have led to me taking pictures of the bark on trees and the frost on sticks convinced that these things are the most beautiful things EVER!  And that fungus, the stuff growing on that tree stump?!  Wow.  And then the last morning, Jack started to get a bit wiggy.  As if in staring at me, ears back, head low, tail down before turning all the way around and running back along the trail to the cabin.  I was talking out loud to him “what’s the deal, dude?  You love this!  Why are you running?”  He did it a few more times but I kept going knowing he will always follow me rather than go off by himself (I love this about Jack.  He will always come to me instead of running off, it’s a reassuring cattle dog gene.)  About an hour later when we returned I told the owner what Jack was doing and how weird it was.  His response?  “Bears.  You don’t think to look up, but there was probably a bear in a tree.  They scout out their prey from the trees.”  Umm, huh?  Shouldn’t they be in hibernation?  In any case, I so wish I would have seen one to get a picture.

In the evenings we sat in the adirondak chairs by the fire roasting s’mores while Jack and Kona did laps around the fire in between begging for marshmallows.  And you know that feeling after a vacation?  The one you want to hold on to, the lack of tension, glow in your skin, the lack of self-awareness about what my hair is doing or what I’m wearing?  Yeah, that.  I thought about it.  What I was really dreading about going back to work.  I arrived at this – I hate trying to dress nice and do my hair and look decent for the office.  What you may not realize, but my friends can testify to, is that I am extremely self-conscious.  I hate trying to look nice, I can’t put an outfit together to save my life and I hate trying to smooth out my hair (it’s frizzy folks, unless I don’t wash is for days and truth be told I mostly wash it every 3 days, if not longer.  You may think it’s gross, but I say it saves me hours of blow drying and straightening.)  I read over at Working Girl blog that advertising and marketing careers are known for being fashionable.  Not this working girl.  I’ve declared too many times that a job where flip flops and jeans are not allowed is not for me.  Am I whining?  Yes, but it’s sort of a problem.  I can get stuck in the mirror forever in the morning not satisfied, trying way too hard, afraid of being judged for not trying harder.  I sweat too much to wear fitted shirts (yeah, I don’t know why I sweat so much, just do.  Doctor’s response – it’s a sign of good health.  Tell that to my fear of raising my right arm too high in public.)  I am a tee shirt and jeans girl.  So, there.  That’s the pimple on face since I’ve been back.  It’s the self awareness that came with leaving the woods and returning to the cubicle when I don’t thing I quite belong.

And it’s the last few days of freedom before a I hunker down for Physics II and Chemistry II.  I know, you think I would get a break with getting a B in physics can all, but that was just the first half!  On to magnets and oscillations.

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more than you wanted to know about snowboarding

Boy and I just came back from our annual Tahoe trip.  We extended the trip this year to include 2 days of snowboarding instead of just one.  I insisted that this time we take a lesson so I can maintain control and not risk blowing out a knee (2 years of snowboarding and we never took a lesson.)  So we did.  And it was awesome.

We took a weekday lesson in the afternoon which meant it was one cutie instructor with a british accent (Rhys, like Reece’s Pieces) and just me and boy.  Basically a private lesson.  He took us to the bunny hill, up the lift, talked us through getting off the lift (still hit the snow the first time off) and walked me through coming down the first hill.  And just having someone there, talking you through the obvious, I wanted to throw my arms up and call my mom and scream “look at me, mom!  look at me!”  We started off with falling leaf, which looks like this:

falling-leaf1So you do this while keeping your board pointed side to side while lifting your toes, rocking back on your heels and squatting down shifting weight into right foot then left foot.  Easy peasy.

Next, S turns.  These are supposed to look like this:

sOr something like that.  So the point is to keep the same foot going forward all the way down.  Whereas in the falling leaf you have right foot going forward, then left foot.  On the S turns, you flip around on the turn and have your back facing down the slope.  Now think about this position.  When coming down on your heels, it’s so easy to fall on your tush and slide down the slope.  But if you fall on your tush facing up the mountain, it’s a heck of a long fall!  See:

fallingMuch scarier, and much more painful.  I slammed down and caught myself by my wrists and I just sat there b/c holy ouch.  I was shaken up and scared to fall again so it took me a while to try it again, but it got better.  It always gets better.

Day 2, we did some bunny slope runs then hit the big trail.  2.5 miles, 8,000 feet up!  First accomplishment, not falling off the adult ski lift.  Boy and I both hit the snow hard last year and the little siren went off that indicates the lift had to stop until the people on the ground can get there faces out of the snow.  So not cool.  This year?  I had a little british voice in my head repeating “alright, 100% this time!  stand up straight, put your weight forward, left butt cheek last to leave the chair…”  And magic!  off the chair and gliding down.  We strapped on our boards and started down the mountain and the experience was 110% more enjoyable than blustery last year when I was tired, sore, had altitude sickness and found myself walking down the mountain grumbling and the parts where I put on my board were so flat I didn’t go anywhere.  This time I zigzagged the whole way down.  Like this:

als-s-tunrsNow, the important part here is what you see to the right side.  Mmm hmm.  Those are 360’s people.  I started my zigzag down the slope and lo and behold – I’m doing circles!  I was totally showing off.  Making sure boy was looking at me each time so I had an eyewitness.  There are cameras set up on the slopes and you can go to the site afterward and see if they caught you in action.  Each day I sat and went through about 300 pics posted trying to see if they got me.  And they didn’t!  I’ve been so worried that no one would believe me, that I am now a very awesome snowboarding fiend.

What I like most about snowboarding is that it is quite possibly one of the scariest things I will do.  Each night afterward I spent an hour before falling asleep freaking myself out, visualizing all the injuries I could get, everything that could go wrong, working up into a mental block.  And each day I went out and got over my fear.  I feel like a walking ad for how girl sports raise self esteem.  Although I think those ads are meant more for the tweens rather than the 25+ gals 🙂

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going to smell the snow

candied ginger for the car ride for me: check

trail mix for the car ride for him: check

bone to chew for the car ride for Jack: check

3 days of food (and enough ginger ale to keep me burping for a month): check

Jack’s snowshoeing vest: check

movies.  tons of movies: check

completely non-intellectual and age inappropriate books (i.e. the Twilight novels I haven’t gotten to yet): check

my snow pants that I left at home last year (followed by a temper tantrum upon arrival): check

TAHOE!

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for the sake of not disappearing altogether

Needless to say, it has been busy.  And this is a quickie.

Consumer free Christmas? Well, not by choice.  I haven’t bought or given a single gift yet.  And I have no plans on cramming in last minute shopping.  When the idea of shopping stresses me out, why would I go do it?  Totally planning on hitting up colleagues and family with Happy 2009! gifts 🙂

Or make that no Christmas? Gasp! Never! However, I’ve had the same question from several people – do boy and I celebrate Christmas since we’re atheist?  Are you KIDDING me?! OF COURSE!  Silly geeses.  What do we celebrate?  Each other.  Family.  Our good fortune.  And oddly enough, our favorite television show is Eli Stone.  We’ve been following this one from the start (and too soon end) and it centers around a Christian man who believes he’s God’s prophet.  We ENJOY the show, the very Christian show, that America has decided to cancel.

Dog is still freak. Why? because last Friday, after finding a sugar ant invasion in our new apartment after the first hard rain, I suffocated drowned a trail of ants across the hallway with a giant puddle of Raid ant killer.  I was proud of myself, too.  I hate hate hate bugs which is why boy usually handles bug situations before I get a chance to even see them, hence the drowning.  I was making a little swimming pool of Raid in the kitchen when I heard a tongue lapping in the hallway.   Jack found the puddle, and the little guy has such an oral fixation he has to put his tongue on everything!  And he doesn’t just lick, he goes to town savouring things such as poop, garbage, and apparently Raid.  I had a fit that sent Jack into an all-day pouty mood and called the ASPCA poison control to go over the ingredients and how Jack might react (and let me tell you, unlike the human poison control center, the ASPCA poison control center is not free.  $60 per consultation which is unfortunate in case someone chooses NOT to pay the fee and take the risk of waiting it out…)  Jack was fine, but I spent a whole day wondering if he was lethargic or just pouting because I used my mean voice at him.  And the advice from poison control?  Give him a treat so he can get the bad taste out of his mouth otherwise he’ll drool and foam at the mouth because he can’t spit.  Dear Jack, if it tastes bad, maybe you should have your tongue all over it!!!

and lastly.  I haven’t slept since Saturday night.  Last night I pulled my first all-nighter since those good ‘ole college days to get through my last final this evening.  I have a lot to say about this semester, but I’m not sure I’m ready to say.  Some of it is humiliating but most of it is frustrating.  Lessons learned – I will not be taking two 4 credit classes alongside working full time, and I will not beat myself up to the point of paralyzing anxiety over not understanding completely new and unfamiliar material.  Unfortunately, I’ve earned a few scars physically, emotionally, and on my transcript.  Nothing that can’t be undone, but it will require 2-3 times the effort and a complete fear of physics.

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this little life of mine.

new-aptmnt-038This is where I wake up.  The morning light is awesome.  I slip out of bed, tuck my feet into a pair of pale green flower embroidered slippers I got from chinatown years ago, and tiptoe into the kitchen for a warm cup of tea.

All the while I’m being watched.  Something happened to Jack when we moved into the new apartment.  Maybe he knew boy and I were making things work, maybe he was just happy not to be shuffled back and forth between two apartments, maybe he’s just finally out of his punk adolescent stage, but

new-aptmnt-066

he’s cuddlier.  Happier.  Snugly.  And Sunday mornings are his snuggle indulgence.  The only time of the week when he is allowed to crawl up in between boy and me in bed and be smushed in between a tangle of blankets.

Weekday schedules are hectic with class, so Tuesday is the one evening a week devoted to cooking a meal and eating together.  Other evenings during the week are spent me leaning against the fridge eating saltines and butter and boy mixing nuts from one bag with chocolate chips from another into the palm of his hand before dumping the mix into his mouth while we rush through conversation about how are days have been.  I worried when we first moved here.  Boy and I talk and talk and talk.  I thought the apartment would be too big for us to carry on across room conversations, but we still manage…

new-aptmnt-045

new-aptmnt-042

This corner of the dining area is coveted.  We live on a busy corner and the front of our apartment is open to the world in odd angles along the street – this is the perfect place to sit and watch.  In the evenings with the lights on, curtains open, and the rush hour traffic outside, it’s hard to ignore the fact that half of our life is open for viewing.  At some point in time, strangers have seen us hugging, dancing, or me picking my nose…

Hardwood floors are new for Jack.  The layout of the apartment allows him to run laps from the living room to the hallway, through the kitchen, into the dining area and then into the living room to the hallway…  If we get him wired enough, he chases us in circles.  If he hears us flip direction when he’s not looking, he does the same.  He scampers in place for a good minute trying to turn around and keep his feet under him and the pawing, clawing, scraping is hysterical.  Henew-aptmnt-080 has flipped backwards and slammed down on his side far too many times only to bounce up and play it off.  Around bed time, he slides off the couch and has been caught letting his back feet sliiiiiiiiiide along the floor as he pulls himself forward in a long stretch.

And finally, I may complain about being stuck in a closet studying, but when we first saw this apartment boy noticed a curious door off the living room with 2 deadbolts on it.  The landlord saw us looking and pointed out that the previous owner had an expensive violin that he locked away in this closet.  Inside is a storage shelf, a window, and built-in desk.  When I stepped in first I shouted immediately “This is mine!”  It’s my study space.  I can lock out boy and Jack  and focus.  It’s my space, not shared space, but my space.  And while I thought we were getting a 2 bedroom apartment to ensure we have enough space to breath while we start this new phase in our relationship, all I really need is this closet.new-aptmnt-008

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coming to terms

I’ll never be that optimistic girl you knew from high school.  And of all my faulty weaknesses, I think this is the one I may never come to terms with.  I even asked boy if he could ever see me that way, the optimist, the smile that walks into the room, the ball of energy that breaks the quotidian.  His response – “well, you’ll never be mistaken for that person.”  But maybe I want to be mistaken for that person.

Some day I want to write a book.  Does everyone have that dream?  I like to think that everyone does.

Maybe we’ll have a holiday party.  An upbeat party where I can finally wear that black dress I love so much with the black slipper flats.  But what if people don’t come?

I want to be a die hard fan of something.  Sports, literature, Twilight…  But I haven’t found what I want to be a fan of yet.

I love the word quotidian.  It sounds like it should be boring when it’s anything but.

I bought nail polish because the name was seasonal – plum pudding.  It screamed “wear me during Thanksgiving dinner and everything will taste that much sweeter!”  And now that dinner is over, I feel like a whore.

I have a closet turned study room.  It has a window and a desk.  My thinking space.  It’s meant to keep all distractions away, including Jack and Jack’s tongue which he can’t seem to keep in his mouth.  He licks air.  I think I may be getting a bit lonely sitting here in my thinking closet…

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I Heart Turkeys

I don’t keep my adoration of wild turkeys a secret.  I love them!  They’re awesome!  And I love hiking and hearing the gobble gobble gobble of a gaggle of turkeys behind a thicket.  So of course I can’t eat them on T-day.  Not for lack of liking the meat, I love cooked turkey, smells AND tastes delicious.  But I just can’t do it.  (Not to mention that Palin video… Good grief woman!)  So boy and I settled for a vegan shepherd’s pie with kidney beans and chickpeas.  What really made it yummy?  Ground walnuts.  Here are some pics:

Lastly, because this is the season as the commercials would indicate, I bought a fitness DVD!  Why?  Because after the move I realized my knees can’t take much more running before falling off, so I better find an alternative in order to cut back and save my tendons.  And here I was griping about fitness DVD’s because they are for lazy people that don’t want to step outside and it’s going to be so low intensity… Right.  Here’s what I bought:

the-firm

And about 25 to 30 minutes in, I turned to boy and huffed out “oh lord I think I’m going to throw up…”  There were cardio moves I was so lost during and I skipped side to side in our new apartment creaking the hard wood floors flailing my arms wondering who in their right mind could follow this stuff!  It’s a mix between light cardio and light sculpting moves but it’s back to back to back with increasing intensity and I was following the non-toned girl they put in the mix for the beginners.  It’s good for me because all I do is run and my body is so used to running that I can go on and on just running.  But can I touch my toes?  Not with out my hamstrings screaming because they’re so tight from running.  Can I lift a heavy box?  Not quite because my arms get no workout aside from swinging back and forth on a run.  It’s challenging.  And after doing it again tonight I want to go out and get more.  And a leotard and leg warmers and an aerobic step (but really, I close the curtains and make sure boy is so enthralled in playing Left 4 Dead so I don’t have to worry about anyone seeing me marching in place, knees up, and swing it out, and did she say right or left?  wait, what the hell are we doing?)

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lessons from the past week

  • how I feel after I take an exam is not a good indicator of how I performed on the exam.
  • contact paper, that stuff used to line kitchen cabinets and drawers, is meant to frustrate the crap out of people like me.  I spent my Saturday night measuring, cutting, sticking, peeling, unpeeling – because I couldn’t possibly let my utensils and dishes touch the bottom of a cabinet or drawer that I have yet to use.  icky.
  • regurgitation and vomiting are actually 2 different things.  Also, nothing can get me more emotionally frazzled than Jack.  Ever since moving into the new apartment Jack has been experiencing what appears to be acid reflux.  When he did a spontaneous regurgitation that seemed to surprise even him, I flipped out and called the humane society vet.  I have never liked this vet, so I got a referral to a pet hospital.  I left work to rush him over there where I was comforted so much by the professional staff.  They have doctors that specialize in neurology, radiation, acupuncture, seizures, surgery… Jack warmed up to them right away.  After finding a heart murmur (on the first visit, he’s been to the humane society at least 3 or 4 times the past year and NO ONE has ever said anything about a murmur) Jack is being monitored for one more week before we decide on whether or not to get a chest x-ray.  Worst case, pneumonia could develop if he inhales while regurgitating.  Best case, he is super sensitive to his mom’s moods and with a move and midterms, I haven’t been the most relaxed person.
  • lastly, apparently I’m not too good at sharing things.  Did I mention boy and I have moved in together after 3 years in separate places?  yup.  we did.  Why did I forget to mention this?  Probably because I’ve been super defensive and protective of what the last year has been like for us.  For good reason.  But what it amounts to is a lot of hard work put back into a relationship that’s worth having and keeping.  And this one’s for keeps.

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peter le feu

It’s what I realized today.  That experiencing passion and sharing passion is sometimes difficult.  Remember my rant about how ferns are awesome (they have flagellated sperm!)?  Did you know some people could care less about this?  No, really.  Some people don’t care. I know, I don’t get it either.

Today I finally made the connection as to why I don’t tell certain people certain things.  Have you have been really excited about something and down played it for someone because you thought they wouldn’t understand?  I’m an atheist.  And I remember when I made the decision to be atheist.  I felt liberated.  Free to move about.  Able to experience this world fully without wondering what’s next.  I was really excited by my decision. But I couldn’t share it with my best friend and I still haven’t.  I don’t know if she feels passionately about her religion or if it’s something she wants to feel strongly about.  For her, religion is familial, tradition, culture.  For me, it felt like a weight.  So why would I ever volunteer this in conversation?

But then there are moments, often surprises, when I’m talking with someone, and I very lightly throw in something, like being a pre-med student.  And they catch it and take a curiosity to it.  And as I explain how I came to this and why I came to this it becomes easier to let it go and it feels good.  And suddenly I appreciate the person I am talking to so much more because having a passion acknowledged by someone feels good.

And I hope I can pass it on.  Recognize what other people feel passionately about without letting it slip away in a conversation.

And yes, peter le feu, it means exactly that.  Farting fire.  But in a good way.

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