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Showing posts from August, 2011

2 am

Recently I read a sweet blog. Essentially an ode to what a good friend is. I just finished a book that spent a lot of time on the protagonist's best friendship (damn you jodi picoult).
But I didn’t feel all warm and fuzzy after I read them.
They were sweet and true and most days or weeks I’d like them.
Just not this one.

Good friends are easy.
They don’t require thought or upkeep, makeup or cleaning out your car.

But maybe even better friends are sometimes hard.
Almost exactly a year ago, one of my closest friends lost her dad. And I drove 3 hours each way just to give her a hug. We don’t speak every day or even every month. But, when I walked in that room we both started crying. Less than 20 minutes later, I got in my car and drove another 3 hours back. Those six hours meant more to our friendship than any of the icecream, or silly notes in class, or cupcakes. More than Prom night or graduation or college road trips or any amount of hours of talking or texting on the phone ever …

popcorn with butter

When I first moved to town, I was 23. A newlywed. Living in a little townhouse in a big city. Where I mostly didn’t know anyone. My husband at the time traveled more than he was home and I had a lot of free time. I was sad and lonely and didn’t want to admit it. So if my husband was gone for the week, I often alternated my nights between the gym, Barnes and Noble and going to movies. By myself.

And I liked it.
I saw all kinds of movies. Once I even stooped low enough to see one starring Brittany Spears (Crossroads). And something about going to these movies was catharthic.
I could lose myself in someone else’s story for 2 hours. It was dark. There was popcorn with butter. And I am not at all a public crier, but somehow it felt perfectly acceptable to cry my eyes out in a movie theatre and feel a lot less alone than I did in my apartment.

Then I made friends, got busy, Shaun stayed home more and I started to know enough people in town that I was embarrassed about being busted at the…

afterschool special part 2: 4th-6th and inbetween.

(my not so indian education cont...)
4th.

Fourth grade is pretty sketchy.
My teacher was Mrs. May. And mostly I remember trying to find words that spelled a dollar. Adding up each letter ( a=1, b=2, etc.). And it seems like for the first time we started to notice money everywhere else. My hair had finally grown out enough to put in a ponytail. Sort of. I also started to wear bows and complained about my dark blue stiff denim jeans with ironed on patches. I was still good with the Keds though. Especially if I got to take the laces out.
I was a Lost Boy in PeterPan in the spring play. Except my lost boy costume was really just an elf costume my mom made out of felt. I cant look at elves around Christmas without thinking of PeterPan.
We had to do a commercial for the class. I chose one I saw every morning while watching TV and waiting on my parents to take me to school. I made an entire guitar out of cardboard and memorized the jingle word for word and sang it proudly for the class. No …

after school special part 1: my not so indian education

When I was in Seattle almost a month ago, a friend told me to hit one of her favorite bookstores there. And I love a good bookstore. I wander the aisles and touch them and take pictures of ones I want to order online cheaper. If their are squishy chairs I sometimes even order coffee and sit down and plow my way through something that looks good. My favorite sections (usually in this order): memoirs, staff picks, religion, science and then fiction. Somehow I ended up in education and couldn't resist this book:

A book written by students, about their teachers. And I was curious about what they had to teach me. The first section were letters from highschoolers to their teachers. And they weren't all flattering. It made me wonder what mine would say about me. The middle section was a retelling of Sherman Alexie's prose about his school years, mostly on a reservation. They were broken up by each grade and painfully honest.  Click here to read it (it is pretty short I promise) An…

i don't feel like dancing

A few things I am good at: math, making mix cds, cooking, napping and losing my keys.
A few things I am not good at: dancing, french braiding, matching outfits (heck, I don’t even match my socks) and applying makeup. And yes. I subscribed to YM, Seventeen and Teen Magazine growing up. And I read them cover to cover. But I still couldn’t tell you how to apply eyeliner. My husband will tell you that I’m all girl. Meaning I cry at cheesy movies, occasionally stress over what to wear, take things he says the wrong way, can quote Top Gun and Dirty Dancing (and owned the soundtracks), and most days I’d much rather get a pedicure than watch ESPN. But I don’t like frilly dresses or big hair or lots of makeup. Growing up, I played outside way more than I played with barbies. And I own nothing that has been bedazzled.

My daughter on the other hand came out twirling. She sometimes sleeps with shoes instead of stuffed animals. She has dolls for her dolls. Is in love with anything princess and of…

the dreaded question and rejection letters

I’ve just finished a week of inservice and meetings and plannings and wanting to poke my eyes out. I spent my last Saturday morning of summer making copies and setting up a demo.
One afternoon this week I got to sit through some technology training. The technology, surprise, was not working. So while the presenter stalled she made us go around and say why we became a teacher.
I had to go first.
And I HATE that question.
You’d think that starting my 12th year, I’d have a good answer stored away. But I froze.
I can’t even tell you what I said it was so lame. I've already blocked it out.

And then today I stumbled across this.
My first rejection letter. Sort of.
It was the Community Opinions page ripped out of the Dallas Morning News. 5 years ago. With the obituaries on the back.

A month or so before that page in the Dallas Morning News, me and my husband somehow ended up kidless and eating brunch in uptown. Someone had left the paper on the table and me and Shaun traded pages as w…

How to play it safe.

Some reccomendations on how to play it safe:
Order the same thing. You already know you like it.
Shop at the Gap.
Wear appropriate swimwear. And never forget sunscreen.
Keep your training wheels on.
Don’t call.
Don’t go first.
Save for a rainy day.
Keep waiting for that rainy day.
Carry an umbrella.
Work late.
Pick neutral tones. For your walls and nails and cars.
Wear a helmet. And kneepads.
Keep your windows rolled up and your doors locked.
Screen your calls.
Hit save instead of send.
Never wrestle.
Never commit.
Play by the rules.
Don’t make promises. Just in case you can’t keep them.
Eat in your room or your cubicle.
Get coffee by yourself.
Do what always works.
Always have a plan and a map.
Don’t do things that scare you. ever.
Dress in layers.
Match your socks.
Have conditions.
Wait.
Put your keys in the same place every night.
Always take your phone.
Get a second opinion.
Always use a dryer sheet.
Use your parking brake.
If it’s not working, give up.
Love less.

And. Those are…

just married.

Our Sunday school class has been doing a series on marriage and intimacy for most of the summer. We have been out of town a lot and I didn’t always do my homework but when we were there….It has lead to some great conversations. Most of which I am not mature enough for. I make silly jokes. Turn all kinds of shades of red. And my husband mostly checks his phone.


And today was no different. Until the class was almost over. We were mid funny embarrassing story when the pastor walks in. (and trust me it wasn’t the kind of funny story that you want a pastor to walk in on) We finished the story anyways which lead to all kinds of laughter and inappropriate jokes (my favorite kind) and she gets up and tells us to stand and face each other and hold hands.

Most of us are still kind of giggling. And it all feels awkward and weird. And then she starts reading.
And every couple in the room is facing each other. Holding hands. And repeating their vows.
And I couldn’t help but notice that every woma…

closets

I am ending my last week of summer with a bang.
By cleaning out my closets.
My clothes just need some weeding. And hanging and I’m hoping to find that pair of jeans and single flip flop I lost.
Owen has a few clothes that need to go. but mostly I just need to match up his shoes and throw out the things with holes and get rid of all the AWOL legos that have made it in there. And pray that I don’t find anything that used to be alive.
But Tess’s closet is in the biggest need. It seems like everytime I do laundry I need to sort through her clothes and pack up the ones that no longer fit.

Because she seems to wake up bigger every day.
The only thing that isn’t growing is her hair.
So I filled two trashbags with clothes that no longer fit to pass on to a friend and another to Goodwill.
And I’m not a saver. I’m happy to get rid of stuff.
But everytime I go through my kids clothes I get a little nostalgic.
Her Easter dress and the outfit she wore to her birthday party and the jammies with th…

5king it in 100 degrees (and a playlist)

I run a lot of races.

Let me restate that a little more accurately. I slowly jog a lot of races.
Mostly 5Ks and 10Ks but I’ve also done mud runs, adventure races and even once did a sprint tri and a half.

I’m not fast. But I always finish. And I rarely walk.

And I have a few racing rituals and tips.

First. I always choke down a peanut butter powerbar for breakfast. I hate the way they taste. But. always do it and wash it down with a Gatorade.

Panties that stay in place are also critical. I’ve had more than one friend try to convince me not to wear them at all but I haven’t even been brave enough to try.

Pee before the race. No matter what. even if it is in a smelly port-o-potty.

Don’t wear the race t-shirt to the actual race. I’m not sure why I’m such a snob about this but I am. I actually usually try  to avoid wearing any kind of race shirt at all to a race to avoid any expectations that I can actually run.

Good socks, a place to tuck your key and a easily recognizable shirt or hat…

welcome to the moment

Me and my husband have different ideas of travel.

He does his research.
I like to get lost.
He likes history. I like coffee.
Neither of us want to miss anything. But we have different ideas of anything.
I can walk forever. His feet hurt.
He googles it. I ask a friend. Or the concierge. Or a random person on the street.
And the next day he can walk forever and my feet hurt.
I give all my money away to homeless people but want to splurge on cabs and desserts and trinkets.

We spent a long weekend in Seattle. No kids. Just us. We even tried to stay off our phones most of the time. And this is partly for our 10 year anniversary. But I also just love new places and getting away and exploring. I’d rather have plane tickets than jewelry any day. And I couldn't wait to get away.

We got in really late. 2 a.m. in my body's timezone. I’d had a rough week. I was short on sleep and food and had all kinds of things running through my head that I was eager to turn off for a few days. So was …