Unplugged

So I’ve decided to do a Monday dump. The truth is, we go offline on Sundays, but really, for the most part we are kind of off line on Saturdays as well (other than my campaign for Jady Griffin to have 400 followers for his birthday.)

Needless to say, this unplugging means that a lot of things come up in reading or conversation and I thought this might be a good day to turn them over to you.

So the firs thing, is that if you are on Twitter and you like to be amused, you should follow Jady Griffin. His quotes of his son Tait are hysterical. His wife has a blog called Lark and Bloom that I posted for last mothers day. It’s a Christian blog, that has a lot of real life insight. You should check that one out also.

We didn’t directly celebrate Elvis’ birthday. But it’s widely known that Graceland

is a favorite of AM’s. Though I have to admit, I am not really sure that I know why… I need to follow up on that. Also. A line in the infamous Marc Cohn song, Walking in Memphis. In case you missed the horrific drama this post created. Anyway, peanut butter banana sandwiches for all.

Nope, this weekend we celebrated the release of AL from prison the hospital. We got an update Saturday morning on Justin’s Granddad, the lack of update since then probably means that Justin’s sister was in town. Hopefully we’ll hear something today. At last news he was doing better – breathing on his own. In our opinion no news is good news! We look forward to not frantically checking our phones to make sure that no one has called or texted with bad news. It was awesome to get the news that AL was going home! We offered lots of thankful prayers during prayers of the people last night for AL’s release and what we hope is Granddad’s continued improvement.

We LOVED this article in the Sunday Times. Be It Resolved. Seriously. So, for those of you who don’t know my AM, she has resolve of steel. She does most of these things naturally. When I showed her the calorie tracking app she has used it faithfully and her weight has stayed really consistent. It’s awesome. I, on the other hand, almost never use it consistently and I toy with 7 pounds like Sadie plays with boxes. I am going to be better about it though. I am resolved. Seriously. Anyway, it’s a great article and very pragmatic and scientific. So give it a read.

For humor. We live at the end of a dead end street. It dead ends into a cemetery. So people use our driveway as a turnabout. Once a month people yell at us or threaten to ram our car for waiting patiently while they use our driveway as a turnabout. Last night, after church, two cars were backing in to turn around and there were three cars parked in front of the fire hydrant so they couldn’t go there… There we sit. On the street. With two cars in our drive way. Three cars illegally parked at the end of the street and we backed up to let the cars out of our driveway so that we could get in, the cars, of course FURIOUS, thinking we’re backing up only to do the same thing they’re doing, not to park AT OUR HOME. I thought Justin was going to go postal. Currently there is a poster taped to a trash can in our driveway that says, Private Driveway NO U-TURNS. I think it got hit at least 10 times last night.

Warning – small political rant. I’ve never lived in a state where primary advertising is reachable. It’s something else. Anyway, there’s this ad out. I won’t mention the candidate. However, the indication is that faith=moral and non-christian/non-jewish/non-mormon faith=immoral. As I said earlier, we go to church. Yesterday after church, we were pulling out of our parking spot, a cabbie almost slammed into the left side of our car trying to get around us and the woman behind us tried to cut around us on the right – while on the phone, with the window down, screaming profanity. Clearly, I responded by rolling the window down and responding in kind. Moral? Probably not according to a man who uses the word zany as an insult. History has shown that both the atheist and the zealot’s capacity for morality and immorality are on parr, and the religious man is the very one who should carefully head how he yields his claim of piety. You would never find an atheist behaving in the same manner. I think it’s pretty dangerous to associate morality exclusively with three specific sects of faith, and statistics show that in fact that is EXACTLY what Americans do. Just something to mull around, and ask yourself.

So there you have it. The tree is down. Epiphany, Little Christmas is past, AL is home, Aunt Sue’s Chocolate Cake is almost gone, and the temp outside is finally above 30 so I need to go for a run. Happy Monday everyone. Thanks for stopping by and don’t forget…

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Catching Up

Since I last blogged… That one time from Vassar… When I was going to blog once a week from Vassar… A lot has happened.  I will catch you up quickly so that we may all move on.

I took two classes.  Once was Gender and Race: At the Intersection.  This was a life changing and humbling course.  I was not the class favorite.  I was not the teacher’s pet.  I was not the most popular.  I was gettin’ by on gettin’ by.  I also took Modernism in the City which I did not expect to enjoy, and loved.  My fellow classmates and myself (except for Harlow who was the class favorite and somehow managed to laugh his way peacefully through the program) worked our way through with tears, hard hard hard work and quit a bit of conflict.  I can honestly say that nothing I did in Germany compares with the interpersonal trial or stress I experienced in this program. I was very thankful that my Aunt finished chemo and I finished the program on the same day.  I will treasure talks on my bed with a wise and generous woman named Eddie, a dear counselor named Allison and my new brother from Syria – Hasko.  Whom I would like to keep in my pocket.  There were 29 students who went through this program and we will be forever linked by our experience.  I am grateful for each one of their stories, their accomplishments, their tenacity and their spirits.  Fighters.  What a group.

We drove home to Lady A and Architect A’s going away party.  Bum-mer.  We had a sweet weekend with them laughing and visiting and remembering a year of fantastic memories and laughter and friendship.  We helped them load their U-Haul.  Enter Super-Morgan, another lifesaver from Vassar who generously loaded A&A on and then loaded J&me in.  Saint Morgan.  No man deserved such pain.  You heard me.  I came home Saturday.  Said goodbye to A&A Sunday, started my math class Monday and moved that Thursday into their apartment.  Shoot me.  No seriously.  It was months before I unpacked.  I got my first B in the math class.  Forsook my 4.0.  NEVER. AGAIN.

I have started the fall semester with an Intro to Lit class that makes me giggle.  Thank you Vassar for your generous contribution to my ability to maneuver a “Lit” class.  Some Bio, some Psych, some Calculus.  I am exhausted.

We had a trip planned to Texas, which fell through very unexpectedly at the loss of my Uncle Al.  So we re-routed to Brooklyn and spent 4 days in a fancy Blue hotel room with a see through shower with AM&UK.  I am pretty sure that they did it on purpose so that we would go to Brooklyn Bread everyday while they showered and pick up delicious sandwiches.  “It doesn’t matter where I am, as long as I am with you.”

When we got back I finally took the final for that math class from the summer and got my weekends back, unpacked my house.  Helped my dear friend with some shows while her husband Rico Schenck galavanted the globe making ships quieter. Having some major minor dental surgery and pondering why my CSA has so many effing root vegetables.  Seriously.  Why?

So there you have it.  You’re all caught up.  Now I am back.  I am pissed about that damn post on facebook where the bratty girl is holding up her sign about no debt, no smart phone and no 99% – and taking responsibility for all of her own actions.  I mean kuddos to her for all her hard work and for every single student like her.  However, I am a student, with a smart phone, and a cheap apartment and a couple of jobs busting my $%&, not blaming anyone, but thinking, should it be this hard?  I think I am part of the 99% – does that mean I am not taking responsibility for my finances or blaming people for my financial state?  I don’t think so.  And I am pretty sure that’s not what she meant to say either.  So take the damn post down everybody, the tone is condescending and not helpful.  We’re all poor.  Be nice.

Also. We have started the Breaking Ground campaign so J and I are begging for money for the orphans again.  Or at least we will be.  We are developing a strategy.  In between homework and cooking root vegetables.  Oh and shopvac’ing our apartment.  It’s true.  I shop-vac’ed the apartment tonight.  And people say I am OCD.  Please.  It’s normal.

Things we’ve loved lately:

The lovely world of Spotify

Speaking of music, at the beach AM would always play great peaceful Sunday morning music GM & RS introduced us to Antje Duvekot, whom we enjoy peacefully on Sunday mornings.  I particularly love the song about Judas lately, it makes me cry.

We joined the Isabella Stewart Gardner museum, I’ve been twice this month and taken to calling the late Mrs. Gardner, “Izzy”

Speaking of things to enjoy in Boston, trying to enjoy the remnant of our tomato plants with Green Tomato Biscuits .

Not much to say about fashion right this minute, except that today, at TJ I found two of the most beautiful MJ (not even M for MJ) dresses for the most drastically reduced prices.  They fit beautifully and were magical and I felt like a fairy in them, they were more than 90% off their original prices.  I was ashamed at how disappointed I was to not have them.  But J and I just re-centered about what’s important.  And those beautiful dresses are not important. Education is important.  And so we re-focus and get over it.  There are plenty of seasons of lovely dresses to be had once I have a fancy pants job and he stays home and walks the dogs.

I’m including a picture from J&me at a recent free event that Shane hooked us up with.  It was so fun.  He danced like a mad man and we drank whiskey and ate cupcakes and I taught awkward dancing.  Poor Shane for being associated with us.  It’s not our most flattering picture, we obviously don’t really careBushmills        We are SERIOUSLY considering using it for our Christmas card.

Motherhood Post

For those of you who don’t follow me on Facebool, Tumblr or Twitter. I guest posted today. Read and laugh.

http://www.larkandbloom.blogspot.com/

Fancy Ranch Water

A “friend” from high school has started this blog – Not That Martha.  I say “friend” because we definitely had interconnecting groups of friends, and I thought M was both incredibly beautiful and overwhelmingly hysterical but we definitely never called each other on the weekend.  We’ve had awkward “catch-up” chats at Patty Griffin concerts, but until this blog started I wouldn’t have really claimed a friendship.  However, as blogs have the ability to do, since she started this blog and I have begun stalking her professionally, I feel a bit more like we are establishing a legitimate acquaintance.

Let me just say, her blog is fantastic and her business is something I have a deep admiration for.  I won’t tell you the whole story here because it’s all on her blog but she and her partner are going a year without buying anything new, they are not eating out and they are farm-to-tabling it like masters.  Her recipes are incredible, but the ingredients she uses, the things she finds and the local Texas stuff that she knows about are fantastic.  I have a feeling you guys will become as addicted to her blog as me.  I hope as well you are inspired by her lifestyle.  I so admire the steps that she and her girlfriend are taking to respond to the current state of our habitat.  I appreciate their commitment to not participate in over-consumption, appreciate the small things in life, be honest about the sometimes difficulty and celebrate their big and little victories, they are shameless promoters of local farmers, producers and distillers.  There is a lot to admire and learn on one little blog.  Enjoy.

Here’s our current favorite from Martha’s blog, I may have been less productive Sunday due to a morning full of this!

Fancy Ranch Water.

Schedule Shame

Thanks for all the love on my AM post. It’s funny, I go on and on about her all the time, perhaps the post was more spectacular due to the current circumstances surrounding our lives, it didn’t feel that spectacular to me. It was factual. That really is who she is, it’s not flashy. It’s just her. However, I appreciate all your love and encouragement.

So, I have a new topic. I am currently supposed to be working on homework, but I try to blog on Mondays. It’s the only day that I have time. Not that I really have time today, but I am going to do it anyway.

I was thinking on Friday about what a bad friend I have become. I used to be a good friend. I was great at cards, mix CDs, books with sweet notes in the front, encouragement, and surprises. I was brushing my teeth and thinking about how one of my best friends from high school had a birthday Thursday, I had a little treat for her and a card and it was going to go unwritten and un-mailed just like Liz’s socks, my sister-in-laws treats that I made for them at Christmas, a birthday card that IS already written to my grandmother-in-law, pictures from my wedding for my mom, a photo album for my mother-in-law, CoCo’s Christmas present is sitting on the couch, she lives a mile away and countless thank you notes that have still not been written. I haven’t seen most of my friends that live in this town, returned sincere and beautiful emails and phone calls from dear cousins and friends of our family checking in on me about something very specific. My father is coming to town this week and I am not sure when, nor am I sure where he is staying or what he is doing. I spend a lot of time snapping at J instead of communicating with him, and all I want to do is sleep. I am so, so tired.

Depression you ask? Nope. Life. School. Work. Laundry.

Here’s what last week looked like.

Monday
6:00 am Out the door for a run
8:30-1 AK, she’s 2 so we got donuts and we also ran some errands. I am almost sure that she enjoyed the donuts more than the errands.
1:30 rush around calling old schools to try to finalize transcripts to be sent to schools I am applying to, this has been a three month nightmare, which came to a raging tear-filled frenzy of groveling and begging on this day. Only to be told, “Oh my gosh, we’re so sorry. This was totally a computer glitch, we’ll release these transcripts right away.” HEART ATTACK.
3:00 Drs Appt
4:00 Home to start working on studying for Marketing quiz, rough draft due for English, and start flash cards for Management mid-term
7 J home, cook dinner
8:30 Finish paper/Work on Vassar summer program application
11 Bed

Tuesday
6:00 run
7:15 leave for class
8-1:15 Class
1:30 Pick up the boys
1:30-5:30 but normally 6 or later Two little boys full of energy and their friends
7 We had something this night last week but I can’t remember what, I just remember going straight from work to do it.

Wednesday
7 Late morning run
AM’s birthday – wrote blog, arranged a couple of birthday surprises.
Studied for Management mid-term and finished up second draft of English paper
Spent some time with Amy and Ellery, a rare and luxurious occasion. I also spent a lot of time on the phone with SDSU and MCC regarding the aforementioned transcript situation.
12 School to get in my hour of lab work for German and Math, also to meet with a professor regarding the summer program I am applying for at Vassar which requires, you got it, transcripts.
3 Pick third family’s kids up from school. Worked until 8.
8 Home to study for test and print paper

Thursday
6 Up early not to run as planned, but to study
8 -1:15 Class
1:30-6:30 Boys
7 J provided dinner
8 Study for German test and work on Math homework
11:30 Bed

Friday
6 Up to study
7 Leave early for pre-class review
8-2:30 Class
1:30 Pick up boys – That’s right I miss an hour and 15 minutes of class every week so that I can work, which is why my math homework is so tedious and important
1:30-6 Boys
We went to Brunello’s on Friday night and had dinner. We were too tired to cook and had a lot to talk about, as we don’t get much talking done during the week.

Saturday
Slept in until 7, ran errands, got groceries, did some shopping.
Family birthday party in Holden, late afternoon
8-2 am Back in Cambridge, babysat for the baby I worked with last semester
3 am – Bed

Sunday
8:30 Up and At em, baked Frittata and made some Ranch Water (recipe to follow in next post)
10 Brunch with Amy and Ashley, trying to remember to make time for friends
Drove to Sommerville to get gas for 20 cents cheeper, went to Trader Joe’s for some groceries, couldn’t get what we needed, ran to Formaggio bought some fantastic cheeses
4 skipped church for the umpteenth time
5 Pulled some meat out of the freezer to try to prepare food for the coming week so that we aren’t stressed about eating each night and so that J has lunches to pack and take.
6 cooked dinner
7 dinner and caught up on The Office & Parks and Rec
9 Clean up and crawl in bed

It’s Monday and now I am starting over. And I am already behind. This morning I wanted to get my German and Algebra homework done. I also need to finish the final draft of a paper, I have an appointment at 4, Haley’s in town for dinner, so tonight is not an option. I haven’t been running yet, because I have been trying to take care of some emails about pretty important stuff, pay some bills, and catch up on my administrative life. None of this will include mailing those things I mentioned at first… So again, more behind than I want to be and German and Math will get pushed aside, as will running and showering.

All I know to say is that it produces shame in me. I always said that small groups were the life of a church, alas, I cannot manage to get to one because of my schedule. I don’t want to go to church because I don’t want to defend my last blog post or explain where I’ve been for the last few months. I want to call my friends but feel overwhelmed with how much and how little I have to say. It seems to create this cycle of shame that even though I am giving everything I am doing, everything I have, none of it is quite enough, and still the time I do have I am not spending in the best way. I am not quite sure how to get out of it. I want to celebrate my friends birthdays, their marriages and new children, I want to be a friend to them during difficult times, I want to catch up and hear how they are. I want to see CoCo, DTB and my cousin who live less than two miles away. It’s simply not going to happen. The things I listed above are more than I can handle, and I am holding on my the skin of my teeth to manage those. Much less the unexpected, like needing to pick up dry cleaning, go to the bank or grab something we forgot from the store.

So please be patient with me. The friend I was is no longer the friend that I can be, I am not sure if I will ever be that girl again. What you are getting is the best that I’ve got, and if it’s not enough, believe me, I understand, I underwhelm myself. But I beg, please be patient with me, I am trying to be patient with myself, and it’s much more difficult than I imagined.

Deep Fried Pork Rinds

Oh thank God my mom doesn’t have to go buy these anymore:

Instead, if she had a computer, or knew how to use the internet, she could click on this link and make them herself. And instead of those nasty preservative filled pork rinds, she can get hers freshly made at home like these:

Yesterday I woke up on the wrong side of the world. I spent all of Tuesday writing thank you notes. I am continuing to do so. I will be doing so tonight as Boo and all his little buddies converge on our house for beer brats and old school Tron. Thank heaven we have that handy dandy DVR/VHS duo. The one that makes low level groans and moans and sometimes makes me feel like we have a ghost in our house. I do not know what a Tron is, but in my mind it looks like a transformer and when DTB and ArchitectA get here tonight I picture this debonaire trio turning into pimple faced, braces clad, snorting nerds geeking out about somthing like a transformer. I’ll probably get all 200 notes written with ease in an attempt to not have to watch one minute of this testosterone empowering movie.

Back to yesterday. Awaken, wrong side of the world. Email from favorite family I interviewed with explaining they were going to keep searching for the perfect nanny for their family. Deep feeling of rejection ensues. I start compulsively applying to all monster and craigslist part time jobs. Including a suggested one for a Spiritual After-school Counselor at a Jewish school in Brookline, I am pretty sure I’ll get an email any minute about that one. I shake it off with a shower which for some sick reason got cold WAY faster than it’s already too fast pace and then rush out to my recently very expensively repaired car with wet hair to take CoCo to school so that she doesn’t die on black ice, only to find it totally and completely dead. Boo proceeded to be totall unreachable. I start panicking because I have another interview with another family that afternoon. Did I mention the freezing rain? Well I did now. Then Boo says to ring my landlords door and ask him if we can use his magic jumper. This is apparently a machine which prevents having to wave people down in the street, ask them if they have jumper cables because yours are in your husbands car twenty minutes away in the parking garage at his office which is holding him captive, only to find they don’t speak English, have never heard of jumper cables or are driving a stolen car and don’t feel comfortable stopping at a house so close to the Brighton Police Dept. Needless to say I was thrilled about the magic machine. So eventually Mr K comes back and tell me that he does not have the magic machine it’s in his son’s car who will be home at 11:30 p.m. Mmmm, thanks magic machine. I’ll go back to freezing rain flagging. I call the family I’m interviewing with. She suggests I take a walk to the closest gas station (at least a mile in any direction) and see if they have a magic machine. I tell her there is not one close, she suggests a cab. Obviously I am going to need to make this interview.

Thankfully, worried about my emotional stability Boo came home and jumped the car. Both of us thankful that it was just the battery and nothing that would return in to the money pit, AKA anonymous and really terrific Auto Repair place that was the recipient of a lot of our money this month. Then, to charge the battery, Boo took me to McD’s for a DC.

I made it to my interview. I will refrain from commenting on it.

Came home, cooked a terrific butter chicken recipe. I know everyone loved the Pioneer Woman’s but I did not love it as much. I thought it was delicious. I overdid it on the honey, but nothing a few very non-traditional ingredients couldn’t almost totally repair. We did it with sweet potatoes. Added a fantastic flavor. We’re trying to ease back into our uber healthy diet. Not with the beer brats tonight, but with the cost effectiveness of using the remaining brats from AL&UM’s party.

Sweet Boo, at dinner, he said, “I am thankful such a hard day could end with such a delicious meal.” I love that man. He watched basketball while I continued to search the internet fearlessly and endlessly for job, encouraging me not to submit an application to a Craigslist post by “freckleface75” for a personal assistant. Hmmm. Wonder why?

So, back to thank you notes and part-time job searches. Maybe some pork rind making too. Sick. You guys know me better than that.

MLK, Civil Rights and Pots de Creme

I love this day. I know that MLK Jr probably wouldn’t, but it is always good to return to the struggle this nation exists in. Obviously, we are still a nation that battles giving equal treatment to all individuals no matter their color or creed. Years ago Bono was speaking to a man that is HYPER famous in Evangelical circles (I know, it’s an oxymoron of values) and he reminded him that the church is NOTORIOUSLY late showing up on civil rights issues. I will not re-state what the article says, but I will say that gay rights is another place that I think the church will soon realize they have been holding on to biblical interpretation that will later be considered as when they held on to scripture for slavery, or oppression women. I hope. I hope. I hope.

My favorite MLK “thing” is actually not the I have a dream speech, though it makes me cry and it reminiscent to me of Obama’s tribute to the victims of the Tucson shootings. If you’ve never read them, go here. The crux of the letters, to me, is “injustice for one man is injustice against all men…”

UK recently sent me a link to this NYT article. Obviously, this is a very fatherly thing to send, but I think it is wildly apropos to the current times and the current day. We are who makes a difference and the difference starts with us internally and overflows from there. Not with finger pointing and expecting other people to change… Like that’s going to happen. We have little control in this world, but our attitude is one thing that we have all sorts of control over. Like running, it’s hard for me to stay on a steady course of discipline in this area, but if I have any hope for the world that I live in, I know it is important that I treat humanity with respect, that I own up to my flaws, and I speak out boldly for what I believe in my heart is right or wrong no matter what the consequence is to my popularity, even among the ecumenical church that I love.

That being said, some friends of ours got engaged and I am cooking a lovely celebratory dinner for them tonight. I am going to make Pots de Creme. I have never done this, alas I have decided that tonight is the night to get this party started. Why in the world do I demand to try new things when people are coming over? It’s inappropriate and I shouldn’t put people in this position. However, armed with Occhi’s parents wedding gift (Cooks Illustrated) I am going to do it and it’s going to be delicious.

Fashion Blogs, 4.0, and Unexpected Free Time

When I finished my first marathon Return of the Jordi’s Mom, who is yet unnamed on my blog, I need to think on it, she needs a good one, something involving animal print I think. Anyway, she gave me this beautiful gift which has the Confucius quote, “The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” That is, in fact, how I began running. One step at a time. Same way I’ve gone back to school. One step at a time. It’s been as difficult. Maybe more so. Especially thinking about leaving the safety of community college and heading to big girl school. However, I got my grades back. Let me tell you the last time I got straight As was definitely Mrs. Wallace’s class in second grade. I could not be more proud. I have to honestly say that I was not sure I was well suited for the academic setting. I thought maybe I was good at reading the New York Times most read and trying to feign intelligent conversation… I am not saying a four point from BHCC makes me an academic, but it does now make me capable of completing a second semester not on academic probation, which will be a first for me. Now that’s worth celebrating!

I am currently testing the waters as a guest blog writer. A friend asked me if I was up for doing some posts for a men’s fashion theme. Ummmm… OK? I am not saying that I don’t love fashion, I am just saying that it’s a bit harder than I thought and I am not sure that I am much of an expert. I mean, I stalk the Satorialist, and his book is one of my favorite gifts Boo ever gave me. I did cry when I watched this video that he just posted on his blog!
watch?v=e5NgG5koPZU

Despite all these things, I am not sure that I am qualified to guest blog… We’ll see how it goes.

So, since my trip to Atlanta was abruptly cancelled due to poor organization on the part of AirTran, and suffocating snow I am trying to use this extra week to do productive things. That includes, long long overdue thank you notes, blogging, guest blogging, and catching up on movies while I am doing it. I am also listening to my landlord sneeze in an inappropriately loud manner, freezing in my own home, eating Sugar Cookie dough, avoiding cleaning and laundry, and craving chick-fil-a. So there you have it. Don’t be jealous. Interviewed for a nanny position yesterday with a family that I adored. Should know late this weekend if it’s going to work out, as the German’s would say, “Press your thumbs for me.”

Sugar Cookies, Rotten Trees and Cellulite

I read a friends blog today and it was so serious I had to
stop reading. IT’S FRIDAY! Come on friends. Lighten up, laugh a
little, introspective self-aware evaluation is only fun for a
maximum of three posts, and really, even then it’s so people can
read it and think to themselves, “Man, at least I am not as
depressed as that poor sack.” Anyway, all that to say, this blog is
for the sake of laughter. First, I am reading a book called
“Mennonite in a Little Black Dress.” It’s so funny. I laugh out
loud a lot. So much so that I take to read while the baby that I
nanny for is sleeping, only I can’t read it because I laugh to
loud. Second. Snow is coming. I am currently walking around the
house with my pet space heater. The only pet Boo will let me have.
Third. My car has
been making this squeaky squeely sound like waka waka weeeeek a
waka. Boo says it’s the fan belt. I say it’s annoying. I’ve already
taken it in once. Today, which I set aside to work on applications,
I am going to take it back. Punk ass fan belt. Stop whining about
the cold, that’s my job. I also need to take my tree down. I am
pretty sure it’s close to rotting. I keep thinking, “Out of sight,
out of mind.” You are probably asking, “If you don’t take it down,
how can it be out of sight?” Ummm, hello. Pretending it’s not there
is practically the same. Fourth. Today as I was eating left over
Taco Salad (I know those who know and love me – GASP) I was
thinking about my life long hatred for Tacos. And to this day I
will not eat tacos in a hard taco shell. There is no reason and I
hate them. There is a reason. Learned Food Aversion. I am always a
little hesitant to post about my family on here, because I usually
hear about it later, but I feel like this one is safe. My mother
cooked 7 meals. I have always claimed this. She also cooked them on
the same night of the week most of the time. I am not sure that
this was intentional, but my mom has a learned aversion to manual
labor so cooking was included. As I have learned with my personal
aversions, structure can help. So as I was trying to recall my
mother’s 7 meals this is what I came up with: salmon croquettes
pork chops (shake and bake) fajitas tacos chicken (shake and bake)
occassionally enchiladas but these were my dad’s recipe so she had
an aversion I do not remember ever eating vegetables For snacks she
loved to eat the following: Pork rinds fillet o fish and the
crispies from Long John Silver (And you guys wonder why mustard
chicken and scallops were so offensive to me when I moved in with
AM&UK) You are probably saying to yourself, ummmm Steph,
that’s only 5 meals. Yeah. I was puzzled as well. But guess what? I
realized that the other two days were left overs. Fajita left overs
on Monday (fajitas were sunday’s meal) and we would use the cut up
veggies/cheese/etc for the leftovers and then the tacos. But to
make sure that I didn’t get sick of tacos… She would mix it up
and make cornbread casserole with the leftover taco meat. If you
cannot understand why I don’t love tacos now then you are a sick
and heartless mench. Even as we prepared the tacos on Wednesday
night my skin felt balmy and I had deep and irrational fears that I
was becoming my mother. However thus far I have not started
drinking Pepsi in the morning, watching Nascar or playing duck hunt
with blinds drawn through the day. So, I am thinking, thus far I am
safe. However. After eating two repeat taco meals, I think that we
are done with tacos for a while. I need another 15 year break. I
also remembered another antidote from my life recently. I don’t
know if I’ve mentioned enough how, ahem, bigger I used to be. I am
not just talking big boned, I am talking bigger. Like Star Jones,
Rosie, Big Bertha kind of big. Anyway, I was still pretty. What? I
was. I was the only over 200 pounder I knew with a fantastic
hourglass figure. An unnamed Aunt once told me that I was pretty
enough to be a plus size model. I think this is actually at least
three rungs below being told you could be a part time model.
I digress. So
I was so pretty that there were four types of men found me
irresistible; Truck Drivers Anybody not born in the United States
or Canada Members of AARP and black men who liked to use the pick
up line, which unfortunately for them did not translate… “Say
baby you know I like thick women.” to which I would respond,
“Calling a girl fat is probably not a very good way to get a date.”
Truck drivers would often give me a little extra toot toot on the
highway, like I was going to MacGyver it and quick like write a
sign, “Meet me at exit 352, my cell number is 555.5555.” Dumb
asses. But the worst was the UPS guy. My friend Laura claimed for
years that the UPS guy had it bad for me and reminded me that he
was in fact, a truck driver. I poopooed her. I did not think he
qualified. Well three years in, he came in my office, asked me to
sign for a package and then offered, “you could add your number if
you want to.” Ummmm excuse me? “You deliver packages for three
years, I don’t know your name and you wear all brown, I think I’ll
keep my number thanks.” The worst was the time that Jasper died, my
beloved, albeit slightly retarded, anorexic lab. I was pretty
bummed. He died prematurely and unnecessarily (I’ll save the Jasper
stories for another time) and I was down. Finally, on about the
fourth day post-loss the aforementioned UPS guy comes in, asks for
just a straight signature and then says, comically, “What’s wrong,
you’ve been walking around like your dog died.” to which I replied,
“He did.” I am pretty sure that’s when UPS dude knew, I wasn’t
going to “let brown do it.” OK. I am going to eat some sugar cookie
dough. I am too lazy to roll the cookies out and actually make
them, so I think a ball of dough will do. I hope that Lance
Armstrong doesn’t have sugar cookie dough entered in MyPlate, if
it’s not listed and I don’t know how many calories it is I like to
pretend like the calories don’t count. Perhaps that’s the cause of
my cellulite collection, or maybe I am just a cellulite hoarder and
refuse to get rid of mine, as I am emotionally attached to all the
hot guys it used to bring me.

College Essays, Mulligatawny and the Sugar Bowl

I come from a long line of longhorns. Well, at least a strong line of longhorns. As in my father refers to the amount of money he gave to the University of Texas at least every third breath, in between complaining about “Catholic high dweebs in their SUV’s with their BOOM BOOM BOOM boxes”, and crime in Arkansas. You can imagine my confusion when I fell in love with an Arkansan. For some reason the two guys I dated before this, both from deep in the Piney Woods (try to google it, you may not find it – it’s practically Louisiana) seemed so metropolitan. I mean, in their own caveman kind of way. Anyway, it’s normally not an issue. Well, unless I cross a line and make too many backwoods Arkansas jokes in public places, or I am with A&A my sister/brother in-law who make die hard fans look wimpy. Other than that, it’s kind of a non-issue. Needless to say, last night when the game was on, I knew we would not be continuing our 30for30 marathon, but instead watching the game. I didn’t even know who UofA was playing. I also didn’t know what a safety was, I think I thought it was a position, but apparently you can also get points for it. I am, however, a big underdog fan and love to cheer for the team that’s looking the least likely to win. I became a big Hog fan last night, even at midnight when Boo is long since asleep and I am catching up on DEG and Anuggs tweets or WWF, we were glued to the TV. Then in the very last of the last minute Arkansas lost the game and we were so bummed. Just what I needed, one more team to Bum me out. As if the other two I cheer for wasn’t enough. This football thing is for the birds, I am going to start watching T-Ball, I am pretty sure they don’t keep score and everyone wins. I have the emotional capacity for that.

Mulligatawny. TPW posted a recipe for easy MGT on her blog and I thought (we’re in a thriftier moment of life) I HAVE ALL THOSE INGREDIENTS. So I sauteed some onions and garlic. Then I threw some Garam Masala, curry powder and flour on them. After that I added an entire box of chicken broth, some Fat Free 1/2&1/2 and finally in the end I through in some chicken cubes (already cooked and spiced with honey and curry) and some sweet potato. I admit, I like my Indian food a bit more on the sweet side, so I added extra honey, but I bet the other solution is to use coconut milk instead of 1/2&1/2. It was absolutely delicious. Trader Joe’s sells a curry naan that we ate the soup with and we were so full and so happy at the end (except for the aforementioned unmentionable.) It’s a great winter soup and really easy, so if you’re a curry fan give it a shot.

College Apps… Shoot me. As you know. I am going to BHCC, and though it is the pinnacle of my academic success (to this point), I am beginning to feel it is not as good as it gets. I know what you’re saying… “WHAT?” “With a cast of characters like hugging troll, loud talker, Joseph, Prof Cambridge, Prof NSYC????” Yes, even though. I love them and they fuel the blog comedy, but let’s be honest. One of my professors may have spoken English as a third language and often called algebraic formulas by the closest well known English word. There could be more out there. So I am trying my luck and throwing my application in. Key word, application. I got a text from my mom last night, explaining that she was working on her Cobra policy and unemployment and that she just really does not like that stuff. It suddenly became clear to me. My aversion is genetic. I never understood because my Dad is basically a paperwork and detail maniac. AM is DEFINITELY a details JUNKIE, she loves them. I swear, I think it might make UK jealous how much she loves the details… Me, not so much. I like the details about as much as I like the smell of rotten fish every step of a long run. I like details as much as Nancy Pelosi likes to watch Sarah Palin’s Alaska with no flask and trapped in a room with Christine Matthews and John Boehner. But now I know, the hatred comes from my mom. For my application I have to write 4 essays and fill out like 3000 pages of information about things I did 15 years ago. Like I remember. I have given myself a deadline. I am pretty sure that I will watch all the DVR’s episodes of Pickers and force myself into an all nighter to finish by my deadline. I can tell this is going to be fun.

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