Tuesday, March 27, 2007

A Fast Boogie and New Blog Features

A Fast Boogie:
I mean "boogie" as in a dance, not something that comes out of your nose. I'm doing said fast boogie because I just found out that I've been granted financial aid not only for the fall and spring semesters, but also the three summer semesters coming up. So, if I pass all my classes (the only ones I'm really worried about are the math classes), I will be graduating in May, 2008. Well, provided I don't die of mental exhaustion before then. But still, MAY 2008! That means, this time next year, I'll be wrapping it all up to get ready to get my undergrad degree.

This is kind of a big deal to me. Mom never made it past high school. Not that she wasn't smart enough. She was a very sharp lady! Just she didn't have the opportunities back then for scholarships and financial aid, so she joined the Air Force to try to get college money and experience, and instead met my dad, and the rest (along with her plans for college) was history. Dad went to Yale and Syracuse, but only for intensive training in languages, he didn't get a degree. He did get a couple of associate's degrees in computers while in the Air Force, but no four-year degree. So, I'll be the first, I believe. I know I won't be the last though.

Now I just have to stay motivated and not drive myself nuts trying to do everything and keep all my balls in the air. And, I have to not strangle a certain co-worker in a fit of rage.

I wonder if that rat-tail is long enough to wrap all the way around his neck...

New Blog Features:

In case you hadn't noticed, I added some new features to the blog. I'm trying to read more of the Bible. In fact, I've picked up Everett's habit of reading a Psalm a day, corresponding the number of the Psalm to the number of the day in the year. It's proved quite enlightening. For instance, I was reading Psalm 83 and came across a surprising reference. I didn't know Ewoks were around in biblical times! Obviously, I'm just kidding. (If you're lost, I'm referring to the reference to En Dor). But I do find it interesting to find obscure biblical references in all sorts of different places.

Wait, I digress (again). Anyhoo, in an effort to help me read more of the Bible, I've added a feed to my site that links to BibleGateway's Verse of the Day flash tool. I think it's nifty.

Also, since I'm nosy and I like to know who/where in the world people are accessing my blog and how often they do so. I noticed a neat little map on Jeff's "Semi-Daily....What Up?" that shows little red dots signifying the locations of all the people who have visited his blog. The dots get bigger the more times people from that location visit. It tracks the locations and number of times accessing the site through the visitors' IP addresses. I thought this was pretty durn cool, so I went to their site and signed up for one to be on my blog, too. It's free, so what the heck? Besides, this way I can tell if you people are actually reading this gibberish I write, or if you just humor me once in a while. :-) So far, I've got little red dots in places where I don't think I know anyone, like Italy, France, and the Canada/New York border-ish area (it's kind of hard to tell. The map has boundary lines for countries, but not states). I even see my blog family's little dots on there, some in Tennessee, Kentucky, Illinois, Arizona, Texas (most of that is me checking in to see what all new little red dots there are!), Wisconsin, maybe even a Michigan or two, and so on. You like me, you really like me (to steal a cheesy over-used movie line)!

I've also rebuilt my links section. When I switched from old blogger to new, somehow I forgot to include all my non-blogging places I like to surf. So, I corrected that error; now you can see all the different places I visit when I'm supposed to be working or doing homework. Like right now, I'm supposed to be studying for a math exam tomorrow. Ha ha. As if!

Anyway, I'll quit boring you now. I just thought I'd point out the new features and the reasoning behind them.

Monday, March 26, 2007

On Parenting

Sometimes it's hard to be a parent (well, actually, it is pretty hard in myriad ways all the time, but I digress). Aside from discipline, love, play, school, etc., it's hard just knowing when to let go enough to let your kid grow. For example, last night Rachel was sick, I was trying to study for a math exam (ick!) I have this week, and supper needed to be fixed and the kitchen was a total wreck. So, since Jamie has helped on several occassions with the dishes, I decided he was old enough to rinse the dishes and load the dishwasher by himself.

Now, as much as I love my son, he has this really annoying habit of doing something wrong on purpose, asking a million questions about if he did it right, in the hopes that I'll get exasperated and tell him to just move and let me do it. Well, last night it finally dawned on me that letting him get away with that wasn't only making more work for me, but it was also doing him a disservice, as he would grow up expecting somebody else to step in and take over any time he messes up (on purpose or otherwise). So, I squashed my impulse to just step in and do it, and made him finish the job. But it was HARD. He dawdled, hemmed and hawed, water went running all the way down to the other end of the counter, but still, I insisted that he do it.

Then he asked in a whiny voice, "Why do I have to do this?" My reply was that he has to do what I ask him to do because he's old enough to start helping around the house more. I also said that since Rachel and I are both working and going to school, if we're going to have a house that doesn't look like a pigsty, EVERYONE has to pitch in and help. Then he tried to make a smart-butt comment about Destiny not doing the dishes. I replied, no, but she is expected to pick up her toys when she's done playing with them, and put movies back on the shelf after watching them. That helps keep the house clean. All he said was, "Oh." Then he finished loading the dishes in the dishwasher, and I told him how to run it.

I wish I had the luxury of not expecting so much out of him. I wish I didn't always have to put a load of responsibility on his shoulders. However, that's not realistic. Our household right now requires that everyone pitches in. I know, in the long run, this is good for his character, rather than letting him loll around the house all day with no responsibilities. I know several children at his school whose parents don't make them do any chores or have any responsibility, and they are total brats! But still, sometimes I wonder if I'm not taking away from his opportunity to "let the kid be a kid" when I have to expect so much from him. Due to family circumstances, my brother and I didn't really get to be children, we had to be tiny adults. I always swore it would be different for my child(ren).

So, now I'll open the floor to your thoughts and experiences on the subject. Comments anyone?

Sunday, March 25, 2007

It Happened Again

I'm really getting tired of being freaked out in the middle of the night. It happened again tonight, folks. The back door slams, Ziggy runs barking and snarling to the back door. I freeze, thinking "not again", and by the time I get to the back door, the front door is rattling and Ziggy takes off snarling that way.

And, once again, it happened when I was the only one awake in the house. In fact, this time, I was the only adult in the house. Rachel went out dancing with some friends tonight for a little while after work. I called the cops first, then I called her to let her know what was going on. Then I went and got her wicked-sharp pocket knife and kept it close by until the police showed up.

This time, the officers (plural) showed up in about 10 minutes. They looked around, didn't see anything, asked if maybe it was an animal. I pointed out that the door on the back porch only opens outward. There's no way an animal could make it slam without a long reach and an opposable thumb to pull the door outward, then let it go to make the distinctive "slam!" noise. So they put a concrete block in front of the door, and another one in front of the gate to the back yard. That way, if I hear anything again, they can come out and see if the blocks have been moved or not, signifying if a person had been through there.

I called Rachel at the club, and she suggested it might be a stupid, drunkard of an ex-boyfriend who apparently likes to randomly track her down and beg for her to take him back. I told her that he must be an idiot if it is him. After all, here he's tried to get in the house twice when she either wasn't awake or even home to see! I told her his timing really must stink. Considering she feels never seeing him again would be too soon, she agreed that there is much about this man that is odious (or is it odorous?).

Either way, whomever it is trying to break in is getting on my nerves. I'm thinking maybe its time I got a wicked-sharp 7" blade of my own, so I won't have to keep borrowing Rachel's.

Somebody laid that ancient Chinese curse on me, I guess: "May you live an interesting life." Well, Buddy, I'd settle for boring!

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Dragons-4; Flyers-3

Woo hoooo! Jamie's soccer team, the Dragons, won their first game of the season! Yayyyyyyy! It was one of those really tense, exciting, never-know-which-way-the-score-is-going-to-go kind of games. Jamie's team scored the winning goal in the last minute of the game. And they were playing against kids who were older and bigger, to boot!

Jamie played goalie the first half, and was a striker (forward) in the second half. He didn't score a goal personally, but he was very good about being there for the others to help them out with passing and such.

The team has come a long way in just three games! They were actually playing as a team the majority of the game, looking to see who was open, passing the ball, spreading out, all that good stuff that makes the game exciting. And it was incredible seeing them finally "getting" what their coach has tried to teach them all along.

I was so excited and yelled so much that I fear my voice has suffered a set-back. I guess I'll have this odd, husky-yet-scratchy voice for a bit longer. I guess it's worth it, though. :-)

Oh, and here's some eye candy for you:

I can't believe I actually got a *real* smile out of him for this one. Of course, for the next one, he had to goof off:
And in case you were wondering, the Dragons lost their first game, tied their second game, and now have won their third game. I can't wait to see what happens next weekend!

Friday, March 23, 2007


There's a wall of glass between us,
you can't see me
or hear me screaming
fighting for just one moment of your attention.
Most of my life,
those who were important to me
never knew I was a person -
I was just an object to be used then ignored.
I'm tired of being lonely.
What's the point of beating
on the glass when
all I'm doing is getting my hands bloody?
You never saw me anyway.
You only acknowledged my existence
when you needed something.
My shame is that I allowed it to happen.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Totally Freaked Out!

Okay, so now I'm totally freaked out. I was sitting here working on homework around 10:45 p.m. when the neighborhood dogs started barking like mad. Then I heard the screen door on the back porch slam. So, I sat here for a couple of minutes with my heart pounding in my chest. Then I got up and flipped on the backyard lights, peeked out the blinds, then made sure all the locks on the sliding doors were fastened. Just about that time, the front door rattled a bit, and Ziggy started growling this really deep, scary growl I'd never heard before, and charged at the front door!

Okay, by now I'm freaked out totally. I'm the only one in the house awake. I can't remember if the door to the garage is locked or not (sometimes we forget to lock it) and I'm too scared to get up and go see. So I call the police. They tell me to make sure all the doors are locked, turn off all the interior lights except for one dim one, and turn on all the outside lights I can. An officer would be here as soon as s/he could.

By this time, I've got sweat trickling down my back, my palms are damp, and my heart feels like it's going to crowd up in my throat. So, I said a little prayer for Jesus to take my fear away and keep everyone in the house safe. I kept repeating it over and over again until the police showed up almost 45 minutes later. Between knowing that God is watching over us and the police coming and inspecting the place, I feel a lot better. However, I'm going to sleep in Jamie's room tonight. Just the thought of having to look at that sliding glass door in my bedroom, wondering if someone is still out there, creeps me out. I know if I had to sleep in there, I wouldn't get any rest at all!

Tuesday, March 20, 2007


Ugh! I wanted to put this trailer in my blog, but the nifty code they provide won't work on blogger for some reason. Darn!

Oh, well. Avast, ye hearties! See it May 25!

Monday, March 19, 2007

Biting the Bullet

I don't know about you all, but I'm thinking it would be wise, when one is already sick, to abstain from playing in chilly sea water. (However, no one ever said I was wise!) I had a tiny sinus infection and a messed up voice at the beginning of my vacation time last week. Now, I have a slightly less-messed up voice and a massive sinus infection. The voice, while not as bad as it was, is still kinda screwy; and the sinus infection has taken over my whole head. So, having been ordered to go to the doctor by my boss, I'm going today at 4:00. On the bright side, I get to leave work early. On the bad side, I have to go to the doctor to do it. I despise going to the doctor! But it will be worth it, I'm sure, to get rid of the funky voice, the awful headaches and pressure, and the other icky accoutrements that go along with a sinus infection. Of course, I wouldn't be going if it weren't for the fact that my boss is making me go.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

New Phone, Soccer Game, Etc.

Luckily, Rachel had a spare phone just like hers that she let me have, and Sprint has transferred my service to the new phone. Now my only issues are re-collecting all the myriad phone numbers I had in my old phone, and convincing Destiny that no, I did not steal her mommy's phone and yes, I'm sure it's mine. I've threatened to cover it in silly stickers so she can tell them apart.

Jamie played his second soccer game today, and he played goalie the first half and striker (forward) the second half. The game ended tied 4-4. In this age group, there is no overtime. He's very tired, and is now complaining of a sore throat like the one I've had for a little over a week now. Mine seems to have mostly gone, except for in the mornings when I first wake up. However, it seems to have taken up residence in Jamie's throat instead - just in time for school to start back up from spring break. Sor far, though, he doesn't appear to have developed the cough I started having on Tuesday-ish. Sorry, kiddo, you have to go to school unless you're vomiting or have a fever. Texas is a lot more narrow in its definition of "sick" than Kentucky.

Dad gave me a $10 gift certificate for Target, so Jamie and I stopped by there, and I got myself a new CD. I picked up ok go's CD "Oh No". It's really good. I really like it, and have listened to it non-stop for the past four hours.

I guess I better quit procrastinating and do the homework I've been avoiding for the past three weeks. I'm trying to keep myself motivated by reminding myself that, if I'm diligent, I'll have my degree wrapped up by spring of 2008. Oh, it can't get here soon enough!

Thursday, March 15, 2007

RIP Little Red and Silver LG Flippy Camera Phone

My phone is MIA, presumed dead. My poor little camera phone (full of irreplaceable pictures of Jamie's last school concert) disappeared on Tuesday. I last used it as Jamie, Everett and I were heading out to eat breakfast and go to a museum before taking Everett to the airport. It was raining really hard that day, so I let the guys out at the museum entrance before parking - across the street in the back lot of an IHOP. I had to hurdle several huge puddles, as well as jump across the rivers flowing down the sides of the street. I believe my phone fell out of my purse during one of these athletic feats. I tried calling my cell phone (something I often have to do as I search for it in the house) and it went straight to voice mail. This only happens when the phone is off. I can only assume that as the phone hit the water, it was short circuited and turned off. Now my phone is MIA, presumed dead, and I have to undergo the hassle of replacing it. Oh well, it was a fun weekend, and a dead/missing phone is a small price to pay, regardless of how annoying. The irreplaceable pictures break my heart, though.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Back to the Daily Grind

Wow! That was a fun weekend. But four days passed by so fast, it wasn't nearly long enough. I feel like just 20 minutes ago I was picking up my company at the airport, then I blinked, and it was time to go back. Oh, and all my bragging about the wonderful weather forecast came back to bite me in the butt. Our trip to the beach was, let's say, an adventure.

First, the person we were following who was supposed to know where he was going, didn't. Then there was construction which confused us (me), and we wound up going away from the beach. Then I finally bought an atlas at a gas station, and we wound up getting there several hours later than we had planned on. And the sunshine was non-existent. It was thunderstorms and temps in the 70s and lower all weekend.

But oh, this weekend was loads of fun. I don't know how others feel about the weekend, but for me it was so wonderful that I'm sad on so many different levels now that it's over. When we were heading back to the airport, all I could think of was the first line of that poem that says "Stop all the clocks". I wanted time to stand still. It was too soon. There wasn't enough time. That just means we'll have to arrange another visit. There's so much more to see, do and talk about.

Friday, March 09, 2007


Having a fantabulous day here. I've got four days of uninterrupted bliss and fun starting tomorrow, including a trip to the beach, I've got company coming down to visit during this time, and I just found out that I got an A on my Earth Science midterm I took on Monday. And here I was sure I'd gotten a C. Woooo hoooooooo!

The only dark cloud on my horizon is the fact that I have to take another mid-term tonight. I'm giving Rachel money to take to kids to McD's or somewhere, ANYWHERE, they can't possibly disturb me while I take this exam over the Internet.

Then, it's total FREEDOM for FOUR WHOLE DAYS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Just to Make You Envious...

The following is the weather forecast for this weekend and the two teensy little vacation days I'm taking next week...

Saturday - HI: 79 LOW: 56 Partly Cloudy
Sunday - HI: 81 LOW: 56 Afternoon sunshine
Monday - HI: 86 LOW: 59 Sunny skies
Tuesday - HI: 84 LOW: 56 Sunny skies

On Monday, everybody in the house is going to the beach (except poor Ziggy. He gets to stay home and I'm paying Jamie's friend a couple doors down to come up and walk Ziggy for us while we're gone.)

To quote my dear departed Mama - "Ain't I a stinker?"

Friday, March 02, 2007


Jamie stayed at work with me until noon. Then we went home, ate lunch, snuggled for a while, then we went to the doctor. In going to work with me, Jamie may have infected my main boss with the flu. Yep, the boy officially has the flu strain that is running rampant in the schools right now. He's been given a prescription for the symptoms, and orders to rest and drink plenty of fluids. Needless to say, we aren't going to Papaw's house this weekend. It could be dangerous for Dad to be ill when he's still having trouble with the pace maker he got back in November/December.

I was planning on doing some serious house scrubbing in anticipation of company coming, but now it appears I'll be doing it sooner to kill any flu germs lying around. So, good people, imagine me attacking my house, sponge in one hand, Lysol disinfecting wipes in the other. EVERYTHING is getting scrubbed this weekend. (So much for studying for my mid-terms next week.)

Bring Your Kid to Work Day

Okay, so it isn't officially "Bring your kid to work day". But it is for me. Jamie woke up sick this morning with a fever, cough, sore throat, chills, etc. Usually if the fever was mild and he was acting his normal self, I would send him to school anyway. But today was different for many reasons.

1) I jokingly said, "Well, if you don't go to school you don't get to go to soccer practice." Normally this would produce a response along the lines of "Gee, I feel better now. I'm going out to the bus stop now." Instead, he said he didn't mind, he hurt too bad to do soccer anyway. What???!?!?!!? My kid must REALLY be SICK. So I didn't make him go to school.

2) I called my boss to inform him of item #1. Bad news, though. No one else was going to be available to be in the office until at least 10 a.m., if not later. Someone has to be here to handle the phones, input new jobs, and make sure everything runs smoothly. Boss had a doctor's appointment of his own, his wife has school all day today, one engineer is teaching a class at one of our suppliers' facilities, and the other engineer is in Austin.

So, now Jamie is taking a nap on the couch across from my desk, and I'm sitting here wondering when the heck somebody else is going to get here so I can take my sick baby home. He has a doctor's appointment at 4:15 this afternoon. The sooner we get home, the sooner he and I can snuggle up together and take a nap.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

God as Fiscal Provider

Okay, I know there are people who have prayed for better jobs, more secure futures, more income to do more for their families, etc. And I know that there are some churches out there that tell you that if you pray for money, God will give it to you, because he wants you to be rich (don't get me started on this philosophy, people). But I don't think He answers this directly.