Friday, December 31, 2010

Reverb - Day 31

Core story. 

What central story is at the core of you, and how do you share it with the world?

Sadly, the first thing that came to my mind is negativity and bitterness. I feel this is ALL that I am anymore. I'm sure my (few) blog readers are sick of it and well, frankly so am I. Sure I could "change" it right...pretend that my life is wonderful, be other people do...but sorry, that's not me. I'm not a good liar either. I wasn't always so miserable, but these are the cards I've been dealt over the past few years and I've become a pretty unhappy person because of it...though mostly just when I'm in deep thought or looking/reading other people's blogs...particularly those who are happily married, popping out more babies, staying at home with their kids, having good times with friends...all of the things that I want, but don't have right now and not sure when (if) I ever will. Right now I am stuck, against my will. I am powerless to make a change & likely will be for some time.

I'm certain this lovely way of being is why less and less people read my blog...and at the end of the day, that's really OK. I've kind of gotten away from blogging until this Reverb series, which has been fun, but today is the last day and I'm really not sure when I'll blog again. What's the point anymore? For Ethan to read this in 10 years and think "damn! my mom sure was unhappy!"...well not sure just how much I'll continue with this. I won't delete it (lesson learned previously) as it's always good to look back upon...maybe someday when I'm  happy again to see how far I've come and to see that things really did get better.

And sure, you can go ahead and say that there are people out there w/lives worse than mine...that is likely true, but also don't think that my full story (of shit) is posted here...there is much more to it than what I share here (another lesson learned).

So it pretty much sucks that what I feel is at the CORE of me is BITTERNESS which in turn had made me into a majorly negative person.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Reverb - Day 30

Prompt: Gift. 

This month, gifts and gift-giving can seem inescapable. What’s the most memorable gift, tangible or emotional, you received this year?

Does it sound ugly or bitter or just plain ungrateful if I say that I did not receive a gift this year that would fit into the above description? I don't mean for it to.

It is the truth though.

Even with my graduation this year...nope. In fact, I'll share with you the lovely story of how my husband went out on the morning OF MY GRADUATION and bought me a bracelet (that I have NEVER EVER mentioned wanting). He also opened a credit card to get it thereby giving us even MORE debt - that we don't need. I ended up taking it back because frankly I wasn't going to wear it. I am a pretty simple jewelry girl... I have a Tiffany 'Return to NY' bracelet and I wear it every day. Oh and did I mention the harassment I got over returning the damn thing? Seriously!! Apparently, he had a hard time getting over that! Whatev! There was NO thought or effort put into this gift and really that is what angers me more. Additionally, I told him NUMEROUS times that I did not want ANYTHING because well, we can't afford it. No big deal. Does he listen? No!! A card would have sufficed, but he didn't bother with that. Turd!

As for Christmas, let's just say I've had better years and 2010 probably ranks as THE worst of all my Christmases. I guess I had a good childhood...and things have gotten progressively worse with age.

I received two wonderful blouses for work, from Eddie Bauer, a brand I wear almost daily and I know their sizes and what fits etc. Well, those buttwipes at Eddie Bauer went and changed their sizing (again!) and the sleeves on both blouses were too back they went. At least I don't think I gained weight in JUST my arms. I did exchange one for a nice pair of khaki pants I can wear to work, but I asked for blouses because I NEED blouses!!

I had also directed family to my Amazon Wishlist for ANYTHING on there...I mean, talk about selection, there are over 50+ items the list. Well, turns out that more than TEN years ago I apparently created an Amazon account and wishlist and when you search by my name, that is the list that comes up. There are 6 items on that list. All items were added in 2000, one of which being a 2001 calendar. No one noticed these {small} details and I received two books I have NO interest in as well as a GINORMOUS Spanish dictionary. I didn't mention this to the gift giver, because it's certainly not her fault and I would never want to hurt anyone's feelings. At least there was thought and effort put into these gifts. Nuff said!

I have since contacted Amazon for help on how I can delete this account. I have tried EVERY email account I have ever had, to no avail. Amazon says they cannot delete the account w/o an email address...well great....I guess it's stuck there forever and I will have to remember to tell everyone to search using my EMAIL address and NOT my name. *big fat sigh of frustration*

Other gifts, while lovely, were small things like some lotion for Bath & Body Works and a gift card from Target. So again, LOVELY, but memorable??? Not so much. 

It is what it is.

Office Overhaul - Help!!

What was once my "refuge" (my office) is now a room I practically avoid. As you will see in these pictures, it is a disaster area. I am typically VERY organized and must have things in their place...which is very likely the reason I am avoiding this room. I cannot find a good (functional) spot for everything and in particular, I cannot find a good placement for my computer. 

I previously had the computer standing up but I can't really put it up against the wall because of the way the CD door opens. There are also 2 USB ports in front which need to be accessible ALL.THE.TIME. Additionally the desk is not deep enough for it to be standing up next to the monitor and not take up a TON of space. 

Maybe there is nothing that can be done (without changing out the desk) and I just have to deal. I dunno. Suggestions?

And getting a different desk is not an option...I wanted this desk set for eons and got it back in 2007 and while it's from Pottery Barn and I thought it would be the ULTIMATE is not. If I had it to do over again, I don't think I would get the corner desk version OR the hutch...I miss my wall space and the fun bulletin board I would hang in front of my desk.

Sorry for the cruddy pictures, they are iPhone pics...for speed, ease and simply because I am lazy.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Reverb - Day 28


What’s the thing you most want to achieve next year? How do you imagine you’ll feel when you get it? Free? Happy? Complete? Blissful? Write that feeling down. Then, brainstorm 10 things you can do, or 10 new thoughts you can think, in order to experience that feeling today.

This prompt seems repetitive (yet again) least in terms of what my answer would become very well-versed in InDesign, enough so that I could make some funky scrapbooking embellishments and sell them on-line. Since I've already written about this at least 2 times previously...there is one other thing I want to achieve which would provide me with a great sense of accomplishment.

I was speaking with the art teacher at the school where I work the other day and she mentioned that one of the teachers offers a clay art project during the summer and that maybe I should consider doing a scrapbooking workshop for the kids when school is out for the summer. She would help me obtain the art room for use as well (at no cost!).

So I'm getting quite excited about this. My initial plans are to run one workshop for 3-5th grades and another for 6-8 grades. I'm certain it will be only girls, so that will be easy. For the older girls, my plan is an "All About Me" mini-album...and I might do the same for the 3-5th grades but the construction of the album may be different. Also, I may need to come up with quite a few projects because I'm not certain quite yet of may be something that runs for a full week for 3 hours each day...just not sure yet. 

The best part, the girls who own the LSS here in town are going to help me plan this and of course I will get my product there as well as direct all the workshop participants to their LSS for products/supplies.

So I still have a lot of planning left to do but I am really looking forward to all of this. Not only will it be tons of fun with the kids but some additional income for me. While I was/am looking forward to having the summer off, I was already contemplating having to find some sort of summer employment, you know, to pay my student loans etc.  These scrapbooking workshops would be a great way to do that and certainly a whole lot more fun!!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Reverb - Day 27

Ordinary joy. 

Our most profound joy is often experienced during ordinary moments. What was one of your most joyful ordinary moments this year?

I don't think I can pinpoint one particular moment of pure joy...lucky for me they happen least once per day and usually thanks to a particularly adorable almost-3-year-old. It's usually something he says, but occasionally it's something he does. Either way, it's usually hilarious, but it's always joyful.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Reverb - Day 24

Disclaimer: I'm skipping Day 23 because that prompt was totally lame IMO.

Everything's OK. 

What was the best moment that could serve as proof that everything is going to be alright? And how will you incorporate that discovery into the year ahead?

Another challenging prompt as I'm not sure I can identify one moment in the entire year of 2010 when I ever would have thought that "everything was going to be alright" and I'm not just saying that...I'm totally serious. A lot of changes need to happen in my life before I would ever come close to thinking "everything is going to be alright"...I guess that's the result of being at the lowest point in my life ever. Instead of life getting better as I age, it's progressively gotten worse. Here's hoping things get turned around in 2011...because I'm quite tired of hoping the "next" year is's yet to happen.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Reverb - Day 22


How did you travel in 2010? How and/or where would you like to travel next year? 

My only travel this year was by car. Two trips to Orlando, FL. One in March. One in July. That is all. Of course, this lack of or limited amount of travel was not my choice...I love to travel and wish I was posting about my multiple trips here and there during this past year...but no such luck for me in 2010.

If money were no object next year, which is HIGHLY unlikely, I would like to travel to Mexico, first to the small town where I lived so that I could visit my friends there. I have not seen them for 10 years! Then I'd love to head over to a beach town, such as Ixtapa or Puerto Vallarta. I'm purely dreaming here, I doubt either of these trips will happen.

What I DO hope to make happen in 2011 though is a road trip up to Michigan. Haven't been up there since October 2006 when the Tigers BEAT the Yankees in World Series Playoffs. Woot!! My best friend has had TWO babies since then, neither of which I have met and she obviously has not met E. A trip up there is OVERDUE! I was hoping my mom could go w/me in March during my Spring Break, but she cannot, so if I do make the trip it will likely be just E and I and frankly, 9-10 hours in a car just he and I sorta frightens me....we'll see what happens.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Reverb - Day 21

Future self. 

Imagine yourself five years from now. What advice would you give your current self for the year ahead? (Bonus: Write a note to yourself 10 years ago. What would you tell your younger self?)

Advice for the year ahead:
*try to continue being strong
*remind yourself that "this too shall pass"
*take time for yourself & leave the guilt behind (ha!)

Note to myself 10 years ago...I really wish I had had this note back in 2001, that's for sure. Here goes...

Dear 29 year old K:

Congratulations!! You have just accepted a recruiting job with Motorola IN Mexico...a goal you set for yourself just a few short years ago. Way to go!! Have fun and enjoy it...just remember that culturally not everyone will fully accept a young, white female in a professional role. They will try to walk all over you and disrespect you...stand tall, grow a thicker skin and show them you know what you are doing.

After six months living at the AZ/Mexico border, you will think you have found the "man of your dreams" least it appears that way for a while. You could not be more wrong. Take it from me and end it, kick him to the curb and out of YOUR house and move on. You'll save yourself truckloads of sadness, anger and bitterness if you just take my word for it.

When that job at Motorola ends due to constant layoffs...enjoy your six months of unemployment instead of stressing so badly, it's your first time ever being unemployed and you'll find something else eventually, so enjoy the free time while you have it.

When you are offered a full time, albeit low-paying mental health research job at the Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, take it...even if it means leaving your house (and O!) behind before selling it. You just might meet a great doctor or two and well, who knows where that might lead. At least you would be back in Dallas a bit sooner, a whole lot happier and close to family and friends.

In 2004, your house in AZ sells and you are back in Dallas. Happy! Don't believe the promise-making phone calls that start coming in from AZ. Look the other way and start anew. Stop doing things in your life to make others happy and start living for yourself. Don't give in to the pressure. Don't settle. Just don't!!

Don't bother moving to Knoxville, TN...the city is boring and offers nothing. Also, the graduate degree you are thinking about pursuing will end up costing you a fortune and you'll probably end up not even using it since salaries are so low in the profession as well as the city. Also, while being near mom and dad is another reason for moving to TN, mom's time will be consumed sucked dry by her new husband and time with you will be extremely limited almost non-existent. Dad will eventually move 90 minutes away so you won't see him that often either. Either stay in TX or move to Orlando, FL like you've been dreaming about for so long. Start living for yourself (2nd reminder!).

Finally, be kind, know that getting married or having a man in your life is not the be-all, the end of the day, relationships are overrated and you've already had tons of fun doing things on your own. Embrace it. Quit worrying about making others happy. Live for YOURSELF!!


K in 2010

Monday, December 20, 2010

Reverb - Day 20

Beyond avoidance. 

What should you have done this year but didn't because you were too scared, worried, unsure, busy or otherwise deterred from doing? (Bonus: Will you do it?)

Well, in order to keep this from being a terribly negative sounding post, I'm going to stick with my Etsy store theme...I didn't launch any big plans to create my Etsy store and get it off the ground. Sure, I have an (itsy-bitsy) Etsy store right now...I think there are 3 things in it at this point, but that's not what it's about.
Reasons I didn't do this...there are plenty: lack of time, lack of money and just plain distracted.

And for the "bonus"...yes I certainly PLAN to do this in 2011. Here's hoping it works out for me.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Reverb - Day 19


What healed you this year? Was it sudden, or a drip-by-drip evolution? How would you like to be healed in 2011?

Nothing healed me this year. There was/is NOTHING in my life that is even remotely healing. I am probably more damaged now than I was at the start of 2010.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Reverb - Day 18


What do you want to try next year? Is there something you wanted to try in 2010? What happened when you did/didn't go for it?

This one is a very similar to Day 13 in my opinion...if not the prompt, at least my answer is the same.
I really want to try to get an Etsy shop off the ground...

I need to learn (and master) InDesign. I keep searching for a class to no avail.

I need to do this not only for me and a creative outlet, but a much needed income booster...since working a 2nd job outside the home really isn't an option.

I didn't go for it last year because I had enough craziness going on w/school, work and home.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Reverb - Day 17

Lesson learned. 

What was the best thing you learned about yourself this past year? And how will you apply that lesson going forward?

Hmmm...this is a tough one for me...I know I learned a lot this year, I'm just not sure what I would consider the BEST thing. I'm also thinking that maybe I really knew these things already, but they were brought to the forefront of my mind based on circumstances in my life at the time.

I'm just going to go with learning that "I am resilient"

Some of the reasons:
-tackling graduate school while having a toddler
-tackling graduate school w/a not-so-supportive husband
-working while tackling graduate school
-dealing w/a not-so-supportive husband
-dealing w/a toddler who is full-blown in the "terrible-twos" mode
-completing graduate school!!!

Yep, I think those are plenty of reasons  :)

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Reverb - Day 16


How has a friend changed you or your perspective on the world this year? Was this change gradual, or a sudden burst? 

I don't think it's been ONE particular friendship, but an overall look at my friendships (or lack thereof) in general during this year.

I've disconnected from a few who I felt weren't "there for me" when I needed them OR simply can't handle it if I'm not Sally Sunshine 24/7. Honestly, I want to know WHOSE life is ALL SUNSHINE 24/7?!? Must be nice.

Anyway, I've also just come to realize that I don't have a close friend who CAN handle hearing about things when they're bad or when I'm down...which sucks, because we all need to just get things off our chest or simply be heard. Sharing this w/a friend holds a lot more value (for me) than with a stranger (i.e. counselor).

I realize I'm not always the most positive person in the world, but experience has shaped me this see, when you get your hopes up and then are continually let down, it tends to make you see things a bit more realistically and sometimes negatively. Once upon a time I was really happy and probably more "sunshiney" but right now, not so much. That's just the way it is.

And so, in looking at my friendships and how they ebb and flow, I've become less open, both here on my blog and in real life. What's the point in sharing/venting when no one really wants to hear it? I realize everyone out there isn't a counselor or even has counseling (AKA listening) skills...and so I'll use my journal and a private blog for now and hope that works for me.

And lastly, I've been on the other end of this...I recently had a friend go thru some pretty hard stuff and noticed her  (negative & depressing) posts on FB, which were very unlike her. I reached out to her and let her know I was there for her if she needed to talk etc....just so happens, she too is a counselor. 

All that to say, even if you can't lend an ear, I will still hear you out in your time of need.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Reverb - Day 15

5 Minutes 

Imagine you will completely lose your memory of 2010 in five minutes. Set an alarm for five minutes and capture the things you most want to remember about 2010.

1. Finishing the Princess 1/2 marathon - probably the biggest athletic accomplishment in my life to date.

2. Ethan's smile, laugh & sweet kisses.

3. WDW trips w/Ethan in March w/mom and in July w/dad.

4. The day I was offered my new job as the school counselor.

5. Graduation day!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Reverb - Day 14


What's the one thing you have come to appreciate most in the past year? How do you express gratitude for it?

I think what I have come to appreciate more and more as the year has gone on is my time with Ethan. Until August, for the past 2 years, I was working 3 days (or less) per week while finishing graduate school, so even though I had studying, tests and papers to do, I still had Thursdays and Fridays at home with Ethan and I loved spending that time with him, just he and I. I miss it.

And so now that I'm working 5 days per week, unwillingly of course, I cherish and appreciate every single minute I have with Ethan, particularly when it's just he and I...those times are even more precious to me. 

What a perfect prompt for today as I am home with E on our 2nd consecutive snow day and I've loved every minute of it, even though it hasn't been just "he and I" since O is working nights since last week. It's still been good times. We've watched Toy Story 3 at least 7 times in the past two days. Thankfully I am NOT sick of the movie's too good to ever be sick of.

Looks like tomorrow will be back to "normal", as in back to school, but Thursday we just might be back at home as some nasty snow, rain, sleet combo is scheduled to come in late Wednesday night. I love living in a place that is not prepared or equipped for even just a little bit of wintry's a great change from growing up in Michigan and STILL having to be at work after 4-5 inches of snow fell overnight.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Our First Snowday!! (in pictures)

Sunday afternoon/early evening - the snow begins.

Monday Morning!

Peanut Butter Cookies - probably the best recipe I've ever used...oddly it was Pillsbury which one would think I had tried before...maybe I have & they just never turned out as well as they did today. Happy!
More peanut butter goodness...I used crunchy peanut butter too. Mmmm.
Just a little bit of scrapbooking...working on my 365 Things I'm Grateful for (2011)
And we are now watching Toy Story 3 for the 3rd time today...good times!! Snow Days Rock!!

Reverb - Day 13


When it comes to aspirations, its not about ideas. It's about making ideas happen. What's your next step?

This is a good I've been thinking about for a LONG time...there is nothing more I want than to have a successful (albeit small) Etsy shop, primarily selling scrapbooking know, like THIS one or THIS one...I love both of them. Of course I would have my own products and ideas, but both of these shops are great inspiration. I have purchased great items from both of them in the past.

So, in order to take the first step towards this goal of mine, I need to learn and become proficient in least that is what my research has yielded. Like I said, I've been thinking about this for quite a while.

I have looked high and low for a "continuing ed" InDesign workshop/class around here, at the local community college...nothing!! I cannot believe it. I've looked @ B&N for their "InDesign for Dummies" book...but I think I may need more than that...does that make me a super dummy??

So while I have these great hopes and dreams, I am stuck right now...the next step remains finding a class (preferably NOT on-line) to learn InDesign and start creating. I'm running out of patience.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Reverb - Day 12

Body integration. 

This year, when did you feel the most integrated with your body? Did you have a moment where there wasn't mind and body, but simply a cohesive YOU, alive and present?

For this one I would have to say March 7, 2010 which was the day I ran the Disney Princess 1/2 Marathon...I hadn't trained as much as I would have liked to, but I managed to finish within the goal time I had set for myself. 

I felt quite proud of continuing with 7/1 intervals for approximately the first 9 miles, paired up with a Twitter friend, (10+ years my junior). I ran the rest at my own pace needing just a bit more recovery between intervals. I finished about 9 minutes behind my Twitter friend.

When I crossed that finish line, got my medal & my picture taken, I would say that was the most alive and present I had felt in a long time. It was the ONLY thing I had done JUST FOR ME in more than two years. It felt good.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Reverb - Day 11

11 Things. 

What are 11 things your life doesn't need in 2011? How will you go about eliminating them? How will getting rid of these 11 things change your life?

Good Question!!!! Yikes!! I"m going to try to make this one short & sweet.

1. Financial Stress - any detail or explanation on this one would be depressing, but I won't deny that I think of it at least 10 times per day...that needs to stop. The only positive in it is that I've been fortunate that I've never been "here" before...something has to change.

2. Baby Weight (+/-20lbs) - E's almost 3 years old...can I even call it "baby weight" anymore.

3.'s no secret, I have very little patience generally speaking...I will say though that I have a whole lot more patience when it comes to my little guy.

4. Debt - so maybe that's alot like #1, but I'm still putting it on here because I'd certainly be better off without it.

5. Body Image Negativity - so tired of this fight, but not sure I will ever conquer it.

6. Cat Puke - yep, that's the downfall of owning cats I guess, but I swear these two I have now puke more often than all my previous (2) cats before them. Ugh!!

7. Zits! Hello people, I am 39...I should not be having this problem...even if it occurs every 28 days or so.

8. Bad music - no explanation needed.

9. Comparisons - as in, comparing me and my life to is self-destructive and sends me into a depressing tail-spin as I am constantly made to feel inferior in my life and all I do (or don't do in some cases).

10. Worry - who needs it? I'm not sure anyone does. I'd like to be rid of it in 2011, but being the realistic person that I am, it probably won't happen in 2011.

11. Guilt/Bitterness - these go hand-in-hand for me, I feel guilty not having enough time with E, which then reminds me WHY I don't have the time and then the bitterness comes on strong!! It's been a hard road to try to shake either of these and like #10, I'm not so sure I'll be able to rid myself of them in 2011. It's worth a try though.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Reverb - Day 10


What was the wisest decision you made this year, and how did it play out?

I suppose this wasn't a difficult decision to make, but it was probably the wisest decision of 2010...that would be taking the job at the school where I am now which allowed me to complete my Internship concurrently and graduate a semester sooner than originally planned.

Sure, I had buttloads of stress along the way: studying for Comps, keeping track of direct & indirect hours, Thursday night classes and after school tutoring sessions...but I managed (somehow!) to do it all and make it through.

Pretty good timing on this prompt as I will walk across that stage this afternoon as I graduate with my Masters degree. It was long-awaited.

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Reverb-Day 9


What social gathering rocked your socks off in 2010? Describe the people, music, food, drink, clothes, shenanigans.

Sadly, this is an easy one for I attended NOT a single party or social gathering this year.

I just can't imagine how I could when this year was filled with work, finishing up graduate school AND caring for my favorite person in the world, my almost-3-year-old son, Ethan! No big social gatherings this year.

Let me correct this by saying there was one party this year and that would be Ethan's 2nd birthday party back in February. That would be the one that "rocked my socks off" considering it was the only one I attended. We had Scooby Doo cake and decorations which was his "BIG" interest at the time...we've transitioned over to Buzz Lightyear these days. It was a small gathering, maybe 15 people total. Ethan had a good time and that is all that matters.

Reverb - Day 8

Beautifully Different. 

Think about what makes you different and what you do that lights people up. Reflect on all the things that make you different – you’ll find they’re what make you beautiful. (Author: Karen Walrond)

This is a hard one for more...obviously since I never finished it's just really hard to answer this because I'm not so sure what the answer (if any) might be.

I do feel like I'm a good friend. I would do anything for a friend in need. I'm always happy to listen. I like to send little surprise gifts/goodies in the mail...and I would do more of it if I had more money. I truly like to give more than receive. I'm not sure that this makes me any "different" from others as I'm certain there are millions of people in the world who enjoy doing these things as well.

And since I'm typically a pessimist...I really cannot identify a single thing that might make me beautiful...I can only see the things I need to change in myself so that maybe someday I really could be beautiful.

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

split pea wreath

Here are a couple pics of the split pea wreath that E and I put together tonight. So fun!

Of course, the glue will dry clear and won't show, but you really want to drench it good after you put the candles and "berries" on.

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Reverb - Day 7


Where have you discovered community, online or otherwise, in 2010? What community would you like to join, create or more deeply connect with in 2011?

Oh, this is a good one!!
I have discovered a new community at my new job. Working at a small private school certainly lends itself to the formation of a family community, then add the religious component and it's even more so of a family. I love it.

We have a staff of approximately 70 people and we all know each other in some capacity. For me, a big part is that the teachers actually WELCOME the School Counselor and my guidance lessons with the kids. My experience in the public school was the opposite and the "talk on the street" is that most teachers aren't fond of giving up classroom time to the counselor.

I also have a problem with having found such a great family/community...the fact that I am constantly thinking about NOT working here next year and the stress I (already) feel over telling the principal I may not be back. I am feeling like I have no choice but to return to my previous career of HR/Recruiting after this school year. The primary reason is financially based and I'll just leave it at that. It also bothers me because this school has had a lot of turnover recently with their School Counselors and while that really isn't MY problem, I feel some pressure to stay put. Silly, I know.

As for a community I would like to be more involved in...there are a few, but at the end of the day, there just isn't the time, as much as I'd like to be a part of them.

Monday, December 06, 2010

Reverb - Day 6


What was the last thing you made? What materials did you use? Is there something you want to make, but you need to clear some time for it?

What a fun prompt!!!

It seems I'm almost always making something...usually scrapbook related. I haven't actually completed a layout in a few weeks and I've got about 2-3 mini-books in progress, so I'm going to focus this post on a different craft project that I recently made. I'm really excited to share it with you too!

I've been working in Centers with the kindergarten classes at school and well, this time of year, they need a bit more help to complete all their Christmas projects with the kiddos.

I helped the kids make an Advent Wreath...but not just any ordinary Advent Wreath...this one is made from split peas and Elmer's Glue!! For the candles we used wooden clothespins that they painted a day prior...3 purple, 1 pink. The "flame" is a gold pipe cleaner. Adorable!!

I meant to make one with Ethan over the weekend and completely forgot, but I've now added it to my "list" so I'll be sure to pick up the peas tomorrow (or Wed) so we can make one together on Wednesday night. I think we'll use real candles though. :)

It was crazy messy...but oh so fun. 

For our classes, we used 1/2 bag of a split peas and a whole lotta glue. Fill bowl with peas and glue. Insert hands and mix until all peas are covered in glue. Place on a paper plate covered with wax paper. Form into a donut/wreath shape. Insert "candles" and shape peas around base of candles to stabilize. Add extra clue into candle bases for additional support. Be generous with the glue. Don't worry, it will dry clear and not be seen.

You can also add some red beads for your "berries".

Such a super cute project. Try making one with your kiddos!!

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Reverb - Day 5

Let Go.

What (or whom) did you let go of this year? Why?

Another pensive-ish prompt from the Reverb 10 Project ...

I've been contemplating this one all day to figure out just what I would post, and to determine whether there is a "what" I let go of vs. a "whom"...because there is ALWAYS a "whom".

I definitely disconnected with a couple of "friends" this year. I'm guilty of being one of those people who really does try to hold on to friends, initiating contact whether it's just a FB hello or short email...but over the past couple years I've come to the conclusion that my time is equally as important as anyone else's and if someone isn't going to put forth the effort to stay in touch, well then, neither will I.

And the best part...I don't even miss these people.

I guess the only "what" that I gave up was my 3 day work week...traded for a 5 day work week, but since that's not something I'm really rejoicing in, I'll not bother going into detail about it. I'd much rather have my 3 day work week back.

So what OR whom did you let go of this year?

Saturday, December 04, 2010

it's beginning to look alot like Christmas

Ethan and I decorated the mantle and other LR areas last weekend...still no tree here yet, but I've heard we are going to get one today.

I did have a load of fun making that fun scrapbook paper garland which also turned out to be a great activity for E and I to do together. 

I also really need to work on finding a "special" stocking for E...right now his is either the Pooh or Mickey one...depends on which day you ask him. The best part of those stockings of course, is that they are ginormous!! Mine is in the middle simply for mom is not a big crafty gal, but she did manage to make this stocking for me more than 35 years ago and well, I refuse to part with it or replace it. I've had to put some extra stitching in the loop @ the top, but otherwise, it's in great shape.
And once again, I'm attempting the December Daily project (which I have failed miserably for the past 3 years), so let's see how it goes this time. This is my cover and it's a 5x7 album. Of course, when I compare mine to Ali Edwards, I never end up liking what I've put together.

Reverb - Day 4

This one will be more of a challenge...


How did you cultivate a sense of wonder in your life this year?

I'm not even sure what "a sense of wonder" means...if it means joy or happiness, then I can probably come up with an yeah, I'll go with joy/happiness.
In 2010, I cultivated joy/happiness AKA "sense of wonder" this year by finding a way to get to WDW (twice!)...and they were both fantastic experiences, despite a few hiccups along the way. The most joyful part of these visits were that the first one (March 2010) was E's first time at WDW and his first time seeing Mickey LIVE and "in-person", as well as many other characters. I swear that the character dining is the best way to go, especially with a toddler.

As for the 2nd trip (July 2010), it was just E and I at the character dining, which had it's challenging moments (getting to/from the buffet), but this time with him was wonderful. I took this little video on my iPhone of him waving his napkin in the hair as the characters dance around the restaurant and sing "Celebrate"...he has recently discovered just how to get to the video on my camera and he LOVES watching it (as do I!). What a fantastic memory!! 
I cannot wait to take him there again..hopefully it's sometime soon, although nothing is planned at this time.

Friday, December 03, 2010

ReVerb - Day 3

So I've not been very good at blogging's a combination of lack of interest(!) and lack of time...simple as that. Well, I guess I also don't have a whole lot to blog about...which is why I'm pretty excited to have stumbled upon this Reverb 10 Project

For the month of December, they are providing a prompt for reflecting back on the year...sounds good to me!!

And so...the prompt for today, Day 3 is...

Pick one moment during which you felt most alive this year. Describe it in vivid detail (texture, smells, voices, noises, colors).

I would have to say that hands down, the day/moment in which I felt most alive was March 7, 2010...that is the day I ran the Disney Princess 1/2 Marathon in Orlando. The longest running race I've ever completed and even came in under my 3 hour goal. I was pretty excited when I finished and maybe even a bit proud of myself...I've never been a fan of running and training for this was not much fun either, but it paid off.

By far, a Disney race is the best kind of race to participate in...not only was it great fun, but the entire time my senses were on overload with great music every 1/2 mile or so, characters cheering on the runners every couple miles as well and in this case a fantastic crowd of women runners who were ready to compete and/or just have fun. Such a good time.I cannot leave out the fantastic experience of meeting new friends that day as well.

And to be able to follow up the race with a day at WDW parks...well, not much in life can beat that. The only thing that could have made this day any better was if my mom and Ethan had made it out of the room in time to see me running or finishing. Instead, I met them at the hotel restaurant after the race and we enjoyed a great day together. 

March 7, 2010...I will remember you for a long time.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


~after a lot of praying and prayer requests,

~E began using his arm Monday mid-day

~and by the end of the day he said he was all better.

~that made me all kinds of happy.

~saw the Harry Potter movie tonight w/mom. Good times.

~leaving Wed for VA

~Happy Thanksgiving.

Monday, November 22, 2010

evil Monday

Probably one of the worst/most difficult Mondays in my life today...

I have an insanely full day @ school and then have to give a 1 hour Parenting Seminar from 6-7pm as well.

Combine that with Ethan's arm injury from Saturday and I'm just hoping I can hold myself together today to get this stuff done.

If it wasn't for school requirements and needing the "hours", I'd be calling in and staying home with my little guy. I worry about how he'll do at school today, wanting to be more active and possibly injuring himself even more. Thankfully, it's only a 2 day work week and we'll be home on Wednesday. I cannot wait!

It's likely some pulled muscles/tendons as nothing showed up on the xray but it really hurts him and he's not using his left arm much...which is really hard to watch. 

I am sick to my stomach over this and feel like it's my fault since I was playing with him when it happened.

I've even lost a couple pounds over the weekend, which I suppose would be the bright side.

I just want to snap my fingers and either re-do Saturday or have E be all better. They said it could take WEEKS...that crushes me.

Thursday, November 18, 2010


that explains the kind of day I'm having...sorta.

I knew dropoff for E would not go well today and although I remained calm and truly believe he wasn't sensing my fear...I was right and he went into full-blown meltdown...that's what FIVE days at home will do (weekend + 3 sick days).

I am really bad at letting these scenarios alter my mood for the day or at least a few hours.

Then when I got to work today I had 3 class lessons with the 8th graders. While they were somewhat enjoyable...they were also somewhat painful. I KNOW I was not as obnoxious when I was in 8th grade. Ugh!
Side Note: our lesson today involved cutting some things out of magazines and one student stumbled upon an article that said "Today's kids are more obnoxious" which point I had to try very hard at not busting out in laughter and agreeing (out loud) with the article. Classic!

I have class tonight. It's sort of the last class...well, it was going to be but then we decided we would meet on our real last class day (Dec 2) but at a restaurant off campus for dinner (and drinks!) that will be fun. Normally I'm not dreading school/class but today I just want to go home. I didn't have time for a run last night, won't tonight either or on Friday. So frustrating. 

It's times/days like these that make my feelings of bitterness rise to the surface. I fight hard to keep them hidden (and I think I do a good job in real life)..but you may see some of that's safer here than IRL.

O is going to AZ for the weekend. It's a "mommy & E" weekend and well, I couldn't be happier. Looking forward to two FULL days of peace and cuddling.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

I Want Wednesday

Well, I haven't done this in a while so let's see what I am wanting these days...

Return to Tiffany Necklace - originally I wanted the RtT TAG necklace (not the heart shape), but they must not be making them anymore because I could only find this one. I'll still take it though. I'm sorta hoping it shows up around say...graduation time...but then really who knows, it probably won't and I'd certainly be shocked if it did.

Any of the bazillion books on my Amazon Wishlist since I am just about FREE from textbook reading...on to reading for fun!!! Thank Goodness!!

I have a calendar obsession...I really I definitely want this awesome list-making calendar from Paper Source!!

I have always loved the movie "The Holiday" and don't have a copy of it to call my own...every year at Christmas time I am reminded how badly I would really like to own this one.

Monday, November 15, 2010

sick day

I'm home with E today..he has the Croup. This is our 2nd bout with it. It came on virtually overnight...bizarre, yet typical of Croup. Of course, you would never know anything is wrong with him by his behavior, he's as active as usual and in a rather pleasant mood, which makes it easier for mom.

The only negative...I had to miss work today and I'm really crunching the hours in order to make the requirements for internship...ugh. I will be so happy to NOT be counting my hours anymore once January gets here. :)

Anyway, it's always nice to have an extra day at home to get caught up on anything I didn't get done over the the one page write up I have to do for class on Thursday. Yay!

And the emails I've been needing to respond to. 

And the extra laundry that I didn't get to.

You get the point.

Of course, it will be excruciatingly painful to return to work tomorrow...that's the downfall of an extra day off.

But on the bright side...4 day work week and then only a 2 day work week next week. Hooray!!!

Hope your Monday is happy!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Daycare Drama

E got bit at school today TWICE. By the same kid.

This is ALSO the same kid who bit him on two separate occasions about a month ago.

Last time, the director told me she cannot guarantee (or even try) to keep them separated. Obviously!!

Now that it's happened again I am furious because it feels like they aren't even watching the kids. Wth??

There are still no spots open at the preschool at my work, so I really have nowhere to go and hence feel I have no options. (side note: if I was still at my old job, I would probably call in sick the rest of the week just to stay home with E and to cool my anger down...not an option now though).

O is of course furious as well and made the (not-so-bright) decision to tell/teach E to hit this boy in the face if he bites or tries to bite him again. This would not be my preferred way to handle things, but maybe if this other kid gets hurt he'll stop biting E. I dunno...but I sure am sick of hearing that MY kid is getting bit!!!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone


All of a sudden a bunch of my co-workers are "friending" me on FB and I'm stuck in a position of feeling obligated to Confirm the friend request.

The issue is that I'm not really comfortable with a bunch of work people being on my Facebook page...I think that is common sense really, so I'm a bit confused as to why they are all sending me these requests.

Honestly, it all started w/one friend, the music teacher...she must have a lot of free time on the weekend because she sent me THREE "friend suggestions" on Sunday alone. That in turn sends emails to both of the parties she is suggesting for connecting and so if I don't confirm the friendship when it is's pretty obvious. I have already asked her to not send me any more friend suggestions, but the damage is done.

Just last night I got ANOTHER request and I am truly feeling between a rock and a hard place at this point.

I'm starting to wish I had never accepted the first request (from the music teacher). Ugh!

What to do!?!?

Sunday, October 31, 2010

fun stuff

I just had to share this paper punch w/everyone because I am completely in love with it!! It is my favorite of all punches. It is lovely. You should get one.

Working on a mini-album for next year...we'll see how long I'm able to stick w/it. I figure I do my share (or more) of complaining and I'm going to really try to find one thing each day to be grateful will certainly be a challenge for me.

And just cutting up some papers in anticipation of Elise's class which starts tomorrow!! Hooray!! Thinking of making a 5x7 mini...just unsure what I'll fill it with. Also wishing I was home during the day to start on it, but instead I have a crazy full retreat, WW, dinner w/mom and speaker presentation to attend at local school. I'm tired just thinking about it all.

I also took part in Shimelle's class "Learn Something New Every Day" but since September was filled with Comps Studying...I have done mine during October. Here are a few pics...

Friday, October 29, 2010

random babble

Here's a random post for the 3 people who still read my blog...

*'s early release for the students today...I still have to be here til 3:45ish. Meh.

*I only have 3 more nights of class to be completely done w/my Masters, but I will still be accumulating direct hours through December. I still cannot believe I am graduating on December 10th!! Woot!!

*The students have no school on Monday and we have a Faculty Retreat.  Most work-related retreats I have been to have had a "fun/team-building" component (other places of employment)...not this time, we are going to a church (!) that is 30 minutes away and will listen to a Deacon speak about the book "The Shack"...umm, I hope I can stay awake. I was really hoping for the retreat to be @ the local zoo where they bring out animals to pet, that you normally don't get to pet on a regular visit to the zoo. Just saying.

*E will get more than one wear out of this years Halloween costume. Hooray!! Today they are having a costume parade at his school, we are planning to go to a Trunk N Treat tonight and another on Sunday afternoon and then out for the real deal of Trick or Treating on Sunday evening.

*Noticing that I've been losing touch with some people lately.

*I am still not used to waking at 5:30am and the whole process of getting out the door in the morning is mentally exhausting, often negatively affecting my mood. Ugh. Some things you just never "get over"

*I'm struggling to keep up with the few shows I like to watch...House, Top Chef Just Desserts, The Good Wife, Grey's Anatomy and Private Practice. I am at least a couple episodes behind on House right now, but I always make a point to watch my Thursday night shows LIVE. They are too good to wait and last night was NO exception. Private

*I'm considering running a 5K race on Thanksgiving day...I'll be in VA and I'm trying to recruit some family members to join's a very family-friendly race (i.e. strollers & dogs welcome) and you can choose to walk too. I think it would be a great way to start a day that will likely result in over-eating.

*That's all for now. Happy Halloween.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

bitchfest - pity party, call it what you will

From the title of this post, you can only imagine how my day has started out...I was certain it was a Monday there for a while...apparently it is actually Wednesday disguising itself as the dreaded Monday.

It all began at 1:45am, when E woke me because he wanted some milk. I typically try to "talk him out" of this but there was no winning that battle this morning and if I wanted to get some sleep, I just needed to give in. Next stop: 2:45am...same.exact.situation. WTF? He rarely does this, so what's the deal with twice in one morning...oh wait, it gets better. Now it's 4:45am...he wants his TV shows on and he's pitching such a fit that again I cave, turn them on w/o volume thinking I'll get to sleep for 45 more minutes. Ha! Yeah right...stupid me. 

The only positive in all of this is that he wasn't a booger when it came time to get dressed for school, but that was because he had already been up for 90 minutes! 

As O likes to say, I'm on the "warpath" today...and for once he's right...any little thing has and probably will set me the effin' moron who COMPLETELY turned in front of me while he had a RED light and I proceeded with my GREEN light leaving daycare drop off today. Yep, I honked, but somehow managed to control my hand gestures.

As you know I have that lovely arrival duty and of course this morning it HAD to be guess who gets to stand out there for 30 minutes of that fun...miraculously I had my umbrella.

When I have days like this, the bitterness in me comes out in full force and I'm reminded of all the times I was "promised" (loosely obviously) that I would be staying home with E during his younger years etc. etc. and the fact that that isn't even an option sends my mood plummeting to the ground. And then I get to observe all the doctor's wives dropping off their kids in their PJs or workout clothes...yeah, cuz that makes me feel even better about things. It's hard not to see other people's lives as SO MUCH better than mine (and yes, I know many have it worse, but just let me bitch for a minute ok?)

I'm in a pretty crappy mood and really can't help it right now. 

If I hadn't called in sick last week, I would have done it today. I do not want to deal with anyone and just want to crawl back into bed.

ETA: No, the day hasn't gotten better, but I lacked to mention the seriousness with which I am considering the need to return to my old line of work after this school year. Once school loan bills start coming in, I don't think this check will stretch that far...even with the increase I would get next school year. I have mixed feelings about it all...finally found an ENVIRONMENT in which I like to work and with good people, but the pay stinks. My former jobs that have paid well, have also come with CRAPA$$ people and environments. WTH? I guess it's too much to ask that all 3 come together for one happy work place?!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

2 bummers

Bummer #1 
I made my Christmas travel decision.

E & I will stick close to home. We may find some day-trips to take, but for the most part it looks like we'll be remaining in Tennessee for the holidays.

I'm both bummed and relieved.

Travel to TX just isn't in the cards this year.

Bummer #2
Being fat. It sucks. I've fought this battle and I hate it.

I joined WW (for the bazillionth time) almost two weeks ago.

For the first time ever, I had ZERO weight loss the first week. WTF? How does *that* happen?? I follow the program exactly, track everything, drink my water but still nothing. I ran 2 or 3 times last week too.

The running thing is going to kill me though. It's getting harder and harder to do and I finally figured out why...I'm SO freakin' exhausted by the time I get home everyday, running is the last thing I want to do...and the reason I'm so exhausted is not just because I've been working, but that I'm waking up at 5:30am these days. Ugh!!

So far this week, the scale remains in the same place...I will be both embarrassed and livid if I lose nothing again this week.

Every morning when I get dressed, I nearly break down in tears.

What happened to choosing "rich or thin"....I'm neither!! Sucks!

Monday, October 18, 2010

planning ahead

Thinking about the holidays already....E and I are (were?) supposed to fly to DFW at some point around Christmas to stay with my aunt for a few days.

At $425+ per ticket, I don't see that happening.

It's a 14 hour drive. I've always thought that it is a bit much, just myself and the little guy, but I'm starting to re-consider. I REALLY want to go to DFW, especially with having so much time off this year. And I know my aunt really wants us to visit, I don't want to disappoint her.

He didn't do great on our last long road trip (FL - July) but we weren't in our car (if that matters), but he did great on the trip to FL in March, so I guess it's a toss-up on how he would do from here to TX.

Is 14 hours in a car realistic for me and a 2.5 year old?

Saturday, October 16, 2010


I'm supposed to be working on a case presentation right now...but I AM at Starbucks and there is plenty to distract me...oh people watching gets me every time. And blogs to catch up on...

Anyway...I'm so relieved that the majority of pressure of school is lifted. I really only have to do this case presentation and one final paper and I'll be D.O.N.E.I cannot wait for the graduation ceremony, hopefully my name doesn't get butchered...and I'm really looking forward to pictures with E. :) I'm also glad that the Graduate/PhD ceremony is on a different day than the Undergraduate ceremony. We'll be done in 90 minutes. Hooray!!

Anyway, enough about school. I'm sure you are sick of that by now...let's talk about the weekend.

I'm hoping I have time to create a new blog banner...this one seriously needs to be changed out with it's Spring/Summer pictures!! Ack!

Tonight I am being taken to dinner (salad!) to celebrate passing my exam..we rarely go out to eat, so that should be long as E has a bit of patience..ha!!

Tomorrow we are heading to the Smoky Mountains...all the way to Newfound Gap...which we visited last year at just about this exact same time of year where I took this picture!!

It was insanely cold and the roads were icy (and scary!!)...I'm hoping it's not that bad tomorrow, but it is quite a site to see. On the way back down, we'll probably stop in Gatlinburg to take more pictures with the ginormous pumpkin in this picture (also from last year).