Thursday, October 28, 2010

Creepy Crawly Things

I am so damn tired of spiders!! They’re absolutely everywhere! I know, I know… they’re more scared of you than you are of them, they won’t bother you if you leave them alone… I’ve heard it all and I don’t buy any of it. I used to attempt to be of the mindset that they’ll go along their merry way if you let them, but that quickly changed when we moved here. These are crazy scary looking and freakin huge. I can’t stand to look at pictures online for more than a minute or so (and even then I’ve got my hand over my eyes and I’m just barely peeking out), but from what I’ve seen ours look just like brown recluses.

There’s a section of woods right behind our house, so it’s understandable that we’d have some inside. But this is an invasion. We put glue boards down around the baseboards and we’re catching a ton and still finding a ton more crawling around at night. More than once I’ve come close to stepping on one when walking down the dark hallways. We’ve each taken a few turns dreaming about them at night and waking up thinking they’re on us. It’s icky.

"Brown Recluse spiders are the Navy seals, the Green Berets...and
the Top Guns of the spider world."
Kansas State University - Brown Recluse Research Project

I totally believe it and I think ours are getting stronger and stealthier by the day. One was on a sticky board the other morning, all good and stuck right. Then a few hours later… POOF!... he was gone. Just like that. Not cool, spider, not cool.

I hate when the guys are gone and I have to get one. First I have to give myself a little pep talk, and then when it’s all over and done with I prance about like the girl I am doing the icky dance. It involves me hopping from one foot to the other going “Ewwww! Ewwww! Ewwww!” When the husband’s home I usually jump up on the couch (or chair, or counter, etc…) and refuse to come down. It’s an effective method because after first looking at me like I’m nuts, he does in fact get the spider. Go husband.

Sweet dreams!

Monday, October 25, 2010

The Park

I found an awesome park the other day and took the poochie there this morning. We had to go to the vet first for some of her routine stuff, and then we headed over. It is huge, wide open and absolutely beautiful! There’s a walking path, a lake and picnic tables scattered all about. I wasn’t really dressed for serious walkin’, so we just took a little stroll around. There were clouds floating along in the sky and a perfect gentle breeze. Her ears starting flapping all about whenever it picked up a little, which was adorable. We wandered through a good part of the park, and it made for a very nice morning.

Like always, we got some weird looks as people passed by. I guess it’s because she’s so uniquely patterned that people are trying to figure out what kind of dog she is. Or maybe just because we’re both so beautiful that they can’t help but admire. ;) Although we don't always get happy glances. Once when we were living in Charlotte, the husband and I were taking her to the dog park and we walked by a family headed back to their car. As we passed by one lady remarked, “That’s an ugly little dog!” I couldn’t believe it! Our poochie’s poor little puppy ears! I wanted to turn around and say, “That’s an ugly little kid.” Not really, but you know. How rude!

Anyways, I’m very excited to have stumbled upon this park and I can’t wait to take the poochie and the husband back on his next day off! Maybe we’ll even have a little picnic.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Illogically talking myself back into it...

I can’t seem to let go of the photography thing. It’s gone past just the camera now... I’m starting to seriously consider it as a profession. The more I think about it, the more I can’t stop thinking about it. I’ve only seriously considered one other thing as a possible long-term profession, and that was being a pastry chef about two years ago.

The husband had just been accepted into culinary school, and I thought about how much I’ve always loved to bake. Plus it would have been cool to be in school together. Anyways, I thought about it for a long while, but ultimately decided against it because as much as I love to bake, I hate being in the kitchen. Period. I get so freakin frustrated sometimes that I warn the husband to stay out. I couldn’t imagine myself voluntarily in a kitchen for the rest of my life. That and it would have cost about $30,000 (we got so lucky the GI Bill covered it for the husband!), which was just not going to happen. 

The money issue is the only thing holding me back this time around, because I really feel like I could do it. I found a program that’s a thirtieth of the previous price (just thought that would be fun to say), but there’s no way we could swing that or the cost of a camera now. It’s an online institute (yeah, yeah I know… but I actually talked to some people that have done it and they loved it), which I think I would do so much better at than going to a physical school. I was never good at that with the whole social anxiety thing. I seriously don’t think I could bear it having pictures I took being put up in front of an entire class to be critiqued/criticized. Plus with this you go at your own pace and have your own personal tutor who grades and critiques. I think it would be awesome.

A few of the stones we made
I want an artsy job where I can be creative. When I was in high school, some friends and I made stained glass stepping stones, and it was awesome. We even had our own little business we named “The Glass Menagerie” and we sold our stuff at local festivals. I loved it so much. I always had tiny cuts all over my fingers, and we had a scary glass cutting machine we lovingly named “The Monster”, but I loved actually making something. Creating something with my own two hands. I know taking pictures isn’t actually making anything other than pictures, but I’ve always loved it and found it to be a very creative outlet. While I was searching for this picture just now, I found a lot more that I took in high school. Even then I was trying to get creative and make them look good. Another one for my “One Day” list I suppose.

Friday, October 22, 2010

I hope he didn't get a ticket...

You know that scene from The Office where Michael is running down the road in front of the office building past one of those “Your speed is” indicators for cars? I totally saw some college kids doing that today, and it was fantastic. The town put one of those devices up about a mile down the road from our house, and I happened to drive past it on the way home. My insurance company would be proud… I was actually going the speed limit.
Anyways, I noticed two college-aged guys standing at the intersection about twenty feet in front of it, looking like they were about to cross the street. Then as I passed them, in my rearview I saw one kid start hauling ass down the road, looking like he was chasing after me. I was totally taken off guard at first and wondered why the hell he was chasing my car. Did I run over something? Did I go through a puddle and splash them? Then I remembered the speed radar thing and started laughing my ass off! It was priceless! I wonder how fast he was going?

Thursday, October 21, 2010


I find myself a little angry today. I logged into Facebook when I got up this morning and discovered that yet another friend is pregnant. That makes about four friends in the past couple of months. Don’t get me wrong, I’m very happy for her and for all of them, but I thought the dreaded “Why not me?” again. That questioning only lasted a few seconds as I quickly remembered that we’re not even trying right now. And I’m on freakin birth control. Duh, of course not me. Then I remembered why.

Then I got angry. Angry that I have this stupid condition. Angry that we can’t afford the treatment for it. Angry that it costs so much in the first place. Angry that it’s taking the insurance company so long to decide if I’m worth covering. Angry that I don’t have a job. Angry that the place I applied yesterday turned out to be the children’s clinic I’d chosen to go to if we did have a baby. Angry that the one thing I’ve ever really wanted I can’t have and won’t even be able to try for again for a very, very long time. Angry that I have no one to talk to about all this.

Then the internet went out again and I got angry about that. So I decided to make ciabatta bread, and the stickiness of the dough pissed me off, and I ended up angry at that. Then angry at myself for getting flour all over the kitchen, which I don’t normally do. And it just kept going and rolling downhill after that. I’m tired of being angry.

This next thing I wasn’t angry about, but sad. I told the husband about the camera yesterday, and the look on his face very rightly and understandably said, “Ha, you’re dreaming.” Then I came back down to reality. We’re supposed to be paying off debts and saving up for possible surgery and pregnancy down the road… how could I forget about that? And then I felt guilty. I guess I’m just looking for something else to wish for for right now, to try to forget what I really wish for. Does that make sense? I guess it’s good to dream… just have to dream for something more practical.

To end this on a positive note, the cable company guy came out and had the internet back up within an hour of when I called. That’s crazy awesome, and crazy unheard of!!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

New Love and New Obsessions

Yes, I am in love once again. My wonderful husband is still my number one love and obsession and always will be, but a new object of desire has found its way into my heart. It’s a camera. When the in-laws came this past weekend they brought their very nice Nikon, and my heart became all aflutter as I played with it. I’ve always wanted a really nice camera with a big lens that I could manually focus, and deep down I’ve always thought that if I had one I could attempt to be a photographer. I’ve had a couple of little digital cameras, but they’ve never held up for very long. And thinking that the nice ones were waaay too expensive, I’ve never even tried to entertain the thought that we could ever have one. Until now.

Of course I went online looking for one and found the perfect one. It would be expensive for us, but it’s not badly priced for what I consider a nice camera at all. It’s beautiful! I’m going to try to convince the wonderful, kind, generous, handsome husband I have (Can you tell he reads this?) that it could be a Christmas and birthday gift (my b-day’s in February) rolled into one that could probably be split with my parents. It could even count as next year’s anniversary gift (in May… a stretch, I know). I know it’s a lot and I totally don’t need or deserve it… I’m still not contributing any money to this family (although I'm applying for another job today… fingers crossed!) and the husband’s moo-lah will be paying for all the holiday gifts this year, including his… but a girl can dream.

Another new obsession that the rest of the household is sharing with me is The Price Is Right game on Facebook. All three of us log in on our respective computers and play together online. It sounds really dorky, but it’s freakin fantastic! The husband and the roommate continuously bash each other on the general chat, but it’s amusing knowing the rest of the people there are just trying to play a game and thinking “What the hell is wrong with them?”.

When your bid is the closest and you hear “YOU WIN! Come on down!”… wow, nothing beats it. That rarely happens because I’m constantly underbidding on crazy expensive items (I would never pay $3000 for one little chair), which makes it that much better when I actually do get it right. Then I win a pricing game! Then I win the showcase!! Oh wow, I just won $50,000 worth of pretend cash and prizes! Well, that’s only happened once, but it TOTALLY rocked. Am I a dork? I don’t think so because The Price Is Right is the best game show ever, right? Right?

They're not from around these parts...

The visit with the in-laws was really nice and pretty funny at times. I got to take them in the back door where the husband works and they got to see him in action cooking. The father-in-law was a proud papa after that! We ate at two of the restaurants the chef owns. They got a tour of a third and the smokehouse and cheese operation they run. We had a cookout at home and watched football. It was rather relaxing.

She got really excited to see cotton, 
so we had to pull over :)
They’re northerners and seem to think that southerners are a different species. I was born and raised in the south, so it was amusing to listen to. They asked me if I thought Mississippi southerners were any different than North Carolina southerners. The stepmother-in-law was constantly in awe of how everyone down here has a truck. We went shopping downtown and she commented whenever she heard someone with a thick southern accent. We visited a little country store which was closed and the owner was so sweet to open up for us. When we left, the father-in-law remarked, “Now THAT was a good ‘ol boy!”

A few years ago I drove to northern Ohio in the winter to visit the husband (who was then the boyfriend), and even now the father-in-law recounts the tale he made up of how I was questioning my sanity to drive up there in the snow. Oh yeah, he thought I’d never seen snow before either. I had always been a little taken aback by him, but now I think it’s endearing. Family’s funny like that. They used to drive me crazy, but now I miss them like crazy.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

This and That

So the in-laws are coming tomorrow. And the roommate’s parents arrive Saturday. No special occasion, just a coincidence that they want to visit their offspring the same weekend. What am I doing? Lots of cleaning and a little freaking out. I’m so scared all these parents are going to be like “Well you’re not working, so what do you do all day?” if the house isn’t completely spotless. I started earlier this week and plan on devoting the rest of today to finishing the scrub down.

The main thing I’m worried about is the roommate’s bathroom… it’s freakin scary in there. The shower is moldy/mildewey and the smell is terrible. I tried to be diplomatic, asking if I could “girly” up the room while the parents are visiting, since it is technically our guest bathroom too, and he said he’d clean it first. I got so happy! I hope he actually follows through, or else I’m just going to crack the door, stick my arm in and wave the bleach bottle around hoping it’ll splash in the right places. Not really, but you know.

Reese's Cake
I made a fantastic cake for the roommate’s birthday Tuesday. I call it a Reese’s cake… chocolate with peanut butter icing and Reese’s Cups bits sprinkled on top. It was yummy! The cake recipe is the one the husband and I used to make our wedding cake, and it brought back memories of standing in his dad’s kitchen making and wasting multiple batches because they kept sticking in the pans. I made some ice cream too and it worked out pretty well. I’d never made ice cream with eggs before, and it was so creamy!

Petting the pig
The husband and I and a friend went to a local farm yesterday. We’ve still been trying to get most of our food from local and organic sources, and this farm has some great stuff. They raise their own chickens, goats, cows and pigs. They make awesome goat cheese and have delicious eggs. When we first pulled up, a big intimidating black dog walked right up to my car door and didn’t look like she would let me out. Turns out she was an old softy just saying hello. There were also numerous chickens and ducks on patrol. 

We had made an appointment earlier in the week with the farmer, but I guess the message wasn’t passed on to the lady of the farm, as she had no idea we were coming. She was so sweet though and her four children running around looked so happy. It would be nice to grow up like that. We ended up getting several chickens, a couple dozen eggs and some breakfast sausage, then headed back home. On the way, we had to pull over to have the husband’s picture taken with a big pig we’d seen on the way in. :)

Monday, October 4, 2010

Welcome Autumn

I think the fall is a little bit magical. There’s something about the air getting a little crisper that gives me hope. The oppression of the thick summer air has gone and has been replaced with a freshness that makes me feel that anything is possible. This time of year always has a way of making me feel a little better inside, no matter what’s going on in life at the time. It feels like a new beginning, and I get excited about the future. When I picture that future now, I see it with children every time.

I see it with my children.

I see little ones in costumes hoping that the next house will give out the good candy. I see tall piles of leaves being scattered about as a belly flop lands right in the middle. I see a big family gathering around a really long table, passing down the mashed potatoes. I see trips to Grandma’s and knowing that she’s going to spoil like crazy. I see all of us sitting in pajamas at the foot of the Christmas tree gently shaking a present, trying to guess what’s inside. All the cliché stuff I guess, but that’s what I want. That’s what I’ve always wanted.

I think of all of that, and it gives me something to strive towards. I know I’m going to have that one day, and it keeps me going.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Doughy Goodness

I made some gorgeous bread today, better than any I’ve made before! I started out making a double batch so I could freeze one. I soon realized that the mixer’s bowl would not hold the ten cups of flour called for, so two individual batches it was! The yeast looked great from the get go, all nice and foamy. Then the rise seemed almost instant! I’ve never had dough rise that much. I usually put it in the laundry room, covered, on top of the running dryer to create a warm, optimal rising environment. Well, I had the windows open because it was a beautiful day and the oven on for another baking experiment, so it was pretty warm all over the house anyway. Maybe that helped? It was a different kind of flour, so maybe that was it? Ooooh, or the whole milk instead of reduced fat? I really don’t know what made the difference, but I’m definitely going to try to recreate it next week! I’m all giddy... successful baking makes me happy!

After :)

Friday, October 1, 2010


I beginning to see once again how things usually work out for the best. I think I'm finally actually accepting and truly believing that this TTC break is the right choice. I went through my own little version of the stages of grief, and I'm happy to say that I think I'm finally done with grieving and am accepting our decision. After we sat down and made that decision, the whole rest of the day I was in complete denial about it. I knew we had to wait, but I didn't truly believe that we would. The next few weeks brought depression, anger and guilt all mixed together. This whole year I've been focusing on making my lifelong dream a reality, and I was destroyed that it had to be put on hold and angry that it had come to this. I felt guilty that I haven't been working for so long and haven't been able to contribute anything to the household (other than lots of cleaning) or our financial situation. I felt even more lost inside. After months of primarily thinking about cycle charting, optimizing fertile times, lines on sticks, researching symptoms, etc., I didn't know how to think of anything else.

The past few days though I've started daydreaming about what I want and where I want us to be when we have a child. I want the husband to be further into his career and feeling more comfortable in it. Where he is now is more of a stepping-stone to where he wants to be. This chef has the name recognition that will help in the future and is giving him an opportunity to gain valuable experience and to figure out the direction he wants to go. I want me to be feeling more confident in myself and my abilities. I'm tired of feeling worthless and unable. I need to find something that will help me rebuild my self-esteem and feel worthy of what I want.

When I think of the future I picture the husband and me sitting on the floor in a living room playing with our children when they're young. I see days in the park or at the beach, full of laughter and play. I see our son riding the dog and our little girl with lipstick all over her face. I see us as grandparents with everyone coming home and gathering together for the holidays, telling stories and reminiscing.

I want us to be able to have that. This next year is a necessary step to making that possible, and I can now accept that.