Saturday, January 31, 2009

When Cancer Strikes

No Friday Favorites post this week.

The Whitt family just lost their baby girl, Tuesday, to cancer last night. Click here to offer condolences.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Honest Scrap!

I guess I figured it was about time I do goes.

Here are the rules:

The rules:
(^Class of Redundancy Class Much?)

1. Chose a minimum of 7 blogs that you find brilliant in content or design.

2. Show the 7 winners names and links on your blog, and leave them a comment informing them they were prized with "Honest Scrap." Well, there's no prize, but they can keep the nifty icon.

3. List at least 10 honest things about yourself.

So my 10 things.

1. I believe that my life will be complete when they finally release all the seasons of Boy Meets World on DVD.

2. I have more hats than I care to count and I love them, but I rarely wear them because I get obnoxious hat hair and then it bothers me for the rest of the day. The only exception to this rule is the cowboy hat, but I do not live in a cowcity, so I refuse to take part in this non-trend.

3. I'm a relentless planner. I love having things planned. I'm very spontaneous on short-term things (for example, the plane ticket I purchased on a whim to New England yesterday), but for long-term things...I need a plan, or I go nuts. It's sad, but true.

4. I'm a religious hypocrite. I'm not religious in the least, but that does not mean that I don't think other people should be. I almost admire people who are for having the kind of faith they do, and I will raise my children as Christians. I was all church-y once for a year or two in high school, and I mean church-3-days-a-week church-y, but I was never so happy as I was when I figured out it meant nothing to me. I'm more of a you-are-a-product-of-yourself-and-your-thoughts kind of person.

5. I like a lot of old music and music that most people have never heard of, and for that reason I tend not to keep CD's in my truck so the people who ride with me aren't bored to death. Radio, it is!

6. I read Parenting and Family Circle magazines. My sister subscribes to them, but never reads them, therefore I get them. But Family Circle has some great, easy-to-make dessert recipes in it, and I'm always fascinated by some of the Parenting magazine articles.

7. I am not one of those "one blog fits all" people, and I have 5 of them. This one, myspace, livejournal, one of my own on a writing site and one that is co-authored on the same site. However, this is the only one I post on regularly, and all 5 serve a different purpose.

8. I do not, in fact, live in High Point, Alabama like my Feedjit location says I do. I'd much prefer it, as they did not have 12" of snow in the last two days, but unfortunately it is not true.

9. The ratio of books-I-own-that-I've-read to books-I-own-that-I-have-not-read is slowly evening out thanks to Uni killing my want for extracurricular reading.

10. One of my biggest pet-peeves is bad spelling and grammar. I try my hardest not to correct B on his, because history is more his subject, but it does my head in. His tendency to use "board" when he really means "bored" is enough to drive me crazy sometimes!

I'm not tagging anyone because this has been done by almost everyone and I can't remember who anymore. If you haven't done it, consider yourself tagged!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

First Snow Storm and Snow Day of Snow9

Anyone who knows me can instantly tell you how much I hate the cold, snow and ice.

Unless, of course, it results in school and/or work closures, like today.

Even though I don't actually have classes on Tuesday's nor was I scheduled to work today, my University decided they'd still call me at 6am to tell me that the classes I didn't have were canceled. But, I'm still a ten year old at heart and super excited when a snow day occurs in my life, no matter what it does/doesn't get me out of. So far we've gotten about 7 inches, I'd say, and it is now icing. They said up to a 1/2" of ice, but it probably won't be close to that here, and then we're to get 4-6" more snow overnight. Translation: I'm hoping the Wednesday classes that I do have will also be canceled. =]

The best thing about snow days, though, is that kids don't have school. Which means I can feed my ten year old heart with a day playing in the snow with them. (You will also notice, if you spend much time on my blog, that I frequently have random children in my possession. This is one of those times.) So, I dressed myself in three pair of sweatpants, one pair of long johns (size childs small, because it's been 15 years since I last purchased a pair of long johns, the short length was combated with knee-length socks. PS they are also hot pink), two hats, two gloves, one longsleeve tee, the warmest coat I've ever owned, and a pair of riding boots...and then sweat my butt off as I dressed the kids and we all went out to soak our clothing in the snow.

E took to snowboarding right away...

...and jumping on my back.

Of course, Chase got in on the action too...

And Belle hated the action...

But, we all had a pretty good time (including the other two kids not pictured, and sans Belle, who cried every time she was set down.) And I am officially incredibly sore from shoveling and snow blowing the driveway, numerous falls/crashes, and numerous children jumping on my back...typically causing the crashing and the falling (maybe I'll do bruise pictures tomorrow, ha!). But, it was fun!

Last year our big snow storm hit in March with 15" in one day:

Poor Chase could barely see over the snow...

So, what did we do during that week of snow-doom last year? Well...

We saw a lot of this...

Tried some of this...

Emptied a few bottles of these...

Had one of these...

Spent 9 days wearing these...

Put our hair in these...

Played with some of these...

And questioned a lot of this...

But mostly we just enjoyed being here...

While not missing here... all. =D

(If you are asking yourself if I was just looking for an excuse to share many Mexico pictures, the answer is yes. Yes I was. Lovely, though, eh? ;)

Monday, January 26, 2009

Headers, Rings, and Other Musings

First off, some of you may notice that I have a new blog layout and header!

"But Via, haven't you mentioned before how bad you are at technology?"

Why, yes! I have, thank you for asking! My new adorable header and layout were done for me by a Miss Casey over at The Ever-Changing Life of the Military Wife! It is certainly a lovely product of Blue Star Blogs, and I can't thank her enough as I am, in fact, technology retarded. Stop over and check her out!


The Ring Decision

I settled on the smaller version of Mr. Diamond, Mr. Smaller Diamond V2.0 (not the same as the Mr. Smaller Diamond pictured in the previous post). You'll have to excuse my incredibly crappy photograph quality, and the pen circle around the ring. I got a little excited.

With the band...

I do love Mr. Diamond so, but it actually looked really bad with the band because they are both "stand alone" rings. But, Mr. Smaller Diamond did quite well with the band. Plus I think this one is more my 'size' anyway, since I'm not really into huge rings.

Let it be said, though, that B flipped through all my pictures of the different rings and picked Mr. Diamond Sr., PhD, who was not even pictured on the last post because Mr. Diamond Sr., PhD lives 2,000 miles past Prosperity (Although, he typically lives 5,000 miles past it, so relatively speaking he was a lot closer than he normally would have been).

What do you think?


I think we have decided where we are moving to this summer, as well. There is an apartment complex a couple miles from here that isn't too pricey, and we can get a two bedroom for the same price as most uppity places are for a one bedroom ("uppity" n. from the latin for "luxurious"; meaning places with washer and dryer already in unit).

It's not a huge square footage, although the picture appears like it is. My sister actually lives over there as well, so I have a first hand look into it (believe it or not it was B who picked this place, not me!). It will work out pretty well though as it's only a few miles from where I hope to have a full-time teaching position for the summer (resume sent yesterday!), and the extra bedroom will come in handy while my niece and nephew stay with us for a bit. (Things that make me a geek: planning for summer in January).


I thoroughly enjoy personally knowing the people who are being talked about on morning radio shows. It allows me to call and weigh in to feed my attention meter without being questioned.

Speaking of which, to all my new followers: Welcome! And thank you for contributing to my newly found need for said attention!

Also, on a side note, welcome to my mom as well, as she stalked my blog out yesterday. Hi, Mom! *waves*

Saturday, January 24, 2009

An Affair with the Diamond Family

Up until this very day, I never thought I needed someone spectacular. I thought I just needed someone who would always be there and would get the job done and still be gorgeous at the end of the day. I didn't think I needed to spend much of my life on this someone; thought a few bi-weekly months would be more than enough to satisfy me. I didn't even think I wanted to choose the one with whom I spent the rest of my life.

But then I walked in to my friend Fred Meyer's and I met this:

and we fell instantly in love as soon as his smooth white gold brushed my skin. I've tried everything, but I can't get him out of my thoughts. I didn't even think I liked his kind before today. But, I'm afraid that it would never work out between Mr. Diamond and I. We live in different worlds. He lives in the land of prosperity, and I in the land of retail and pre-military.

Things are farther complicated by his younger brother, Mr. Smaller Diamond, who is trying desperately to woo me for himself. But I am firm in my restriction, and it is not by choice. He is just not as handsome as his older brother. The sparkle is just not the same. However, Mr. Smaller Diamond lives only in the world of CouldSqueezeByLand, and that is a much closer country than Prosperity.

But both may lose to my internet love affair with Mr. Crown Prince. I met mister Crown late one night when I was feeling like a kiss, and he certainly delivered. You know, over the internet. Mr. Crown is certainly original, and he knows exactly where to live to make me happy. In fact, he's even willing to move closer and change the center of himself just to please me. We are much closer than Mr. Smaller Diamond and I could ever be. If only we could meet in person...

Mr. Diamond, however, also has a cousin the same age. All their lives they have fought for the best of the best, and it is no surprise that he has also attempted to bed me. Mr. Cathedral, however, is not as gorgeous as he thinks and has an even slimmer shot than his younger cousin, Mr. Small Diamond, since they live in the same world. But damn, is Mr. Cathedral scintillating.

And lastly, Baby Diamond is pulling for my attention. He has many of the same features of his father, Mr. Diamond, but as a baby does not have the same glamour. But, he's just so darn cute with all his baby talk that one can't help but entertain his chubby baby figure. Plus, he lives in my world (did I mention he's a bastard child?)

But, isn't Mr. Diamond so amazingly sexy? Just look at his shimmering face of loveliness:

So, who is your favorite Diamond boy?

Friday, January 23, 2009

Friday Favorites!

This might be kind of different this week, but it will probably be better than last week because I had a moment of 'smart' and decided to jot some things down over the week! There is also a little extra 'aw' and 'ha' factor on the end, just for some smiles.

Oh! And because I am such an attention whore, apparently, I need more comments to be happy. So, I changed my comments to be "anyone can comment" after I realized people were making accounts just to comment on here...aka, after I realized it wasn't set up like that in the first place. So, now the whole world can leave me messages! Aren't you excited? Yea, I thought so.

Friday Favorites!

First and foremost, I learned this week that if you blog about giant extinct reptiles killing people, you're blog will be googled. 700 times. In 12 hours. (I'm not going to lie, it's because of this that I now know I'm an attention whore. "Only 100 hits today? Psst.")

There are some people whose advice on books you should never follow.

There is a difference between what Hoxworth says and what Hoxworth means. Observe:
Say: "You cannot donate blood if you have gotten a tattoo in the last 12 months."
Mean: "We will still take your blood, but we will bitch about it because now we have to run all these extra tests.
Say: "You cannot donate blood if you have received third world medical care."
Mean: "Not only will we not be taking your blood, but instead of calling you every 4 weeks like we have for the last five years, we will be nearly hanging up on you because we're afraid that you have an undiscovered third world disease that can be transmitted through the telephone wire. We will not be calling again."

I hate hospitals. I think my sister is an alien. (Believe me, they are related.)

As much as I believe I can figure anything out, it is not a good idea to break out tools I don't know the names of and attempt to take apart a lamp in an attempt to rewire it and finagle it to my headboard. The clicky thingy and the electrical box thingy do actually have to stay attached for it to work, apparently. (Technical terms, of course.)

I should not browse bookstorse online at 1am, I end up regretting the amount I spend. But, it's so hard to pass up an awesome B&N sale because they never happen. (I do actually sleep on occasion, I promise.)

If you cut your lip along the top or bottom edge, people will look at you funny.

Take 10 hours and a combination of orange juice+tea+water+water+tea+tea+water and you end up with bi-hourly sleep breaks to pee.

To add to evidence that people should retake their drivers test at a certain age (like...65 or so), I watched a woman park in the row in front of my work yesterday. As she backed up with what I think she believed was 'precision,' she turned off the car and got out. Not only had she not ended up in one spot, but she had also managed to park in four spots. Amazing.

I think I'm going to attempt a new recipe: Rosewater Panna Cotta. It looks and sounds delicious, but how it turns out is a completely different story. This is buttermilk panna cotta, but you get the idea:

One person I will not be taking recipe advice from after viewing this video, however, is Paula Deen:

Kudos to E. Slaten for showing me this disgustingness.


The "aw" factor.

Just to add to all the other reasons that I'm sure I have the most amazing man in the world, here's a few more.

He sends me messages at night that say things like "Goodnight baby. I can't wait until I can say it in person every night. Love you." and "I just wanted to tell you that you are beautiful and I love you. Goodnight baby." and wakes me up with one of these: "Good morning beautiful." and hits me with one of these in the middle of the day: "Hey, I love you."

And if all that weren't enough, we were standing around in the camper today and I had 11 month old Arabella. I turned to B and said "Do you want her?" and he said "Sure!" in no form of sarcastic tone at all, and took her right from me. Yea, that's right. My man likes babies. Proof:

And as we were walking away, leaving kids aged 11 months, 4 years, 6 years and 13 years old after watching them for awhile, he goes "I love kids" in the most serious tone ever.

=] I don't think I could be luckier!


The "ha" factor.

These conversations are real, and have not been altered in anyway. Well, maybe a little altered to how I remember them...and for dramatic affect. But, not much.

At Dinner, 8 year old Ethan is saying the prayer:
E: Thank you Jesus for giving us food. And for being good. And for taking away...taking away...*pause* What is it?"
S: "Sins"
E: "Oh yea! Sins. And for the food we're eating. Amen." Lol.

Ethan and Granny's morning story:
Ethan: "Once there was a little boy. His name was Ethan. And there was a Granny whose name was Granny. And Ethan sometimes spent the night at Granny's but not very often. But, she has no idea how much time he's going to be spending at Granny's now because he hates getting up at six in the morning to come over here."

HA! Yea, that's my life right there ;)

I should probably also say that I wrote this post in several 5 minute increments today as that was pretty much all the time I had (I couldn't bare a Friday Favorites! post on Saturday. Tsk tsk!) so I apologize for typos and/or repeats!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Lost Tapes: When Giant Extinct Lizards Attack

When I was younger and I'd have trouble falling asleep, my mom used to tell me to "turn on something educational, that'll do it!" Well, when I started watching Discovery Health, Animal Planet, Nat Geo etc. in the middle of the day just for fun, she realized where she had gone wrong. However, the tradition didn't exactly stop, and I can often be found wandering through said channels in the middle of the night

Like last night, for example, when I flipped to Animal Planet at 2am, and found a new show: Lost Tapes. It's basically a show that uses found video tape footage to suggest that something exists and/or is not extinct. Like Bigfoot, for example. Or, in the episode I watched, one of these cuddly creatures:

Also known as a "Megalania" or "Devil Dragon," a 20-30 foot giant monitor lizard that roamed Australia some 40,000+ years ago.

But wait! There are tapes that 'prove' it's still roaming, of course! I tried to find a good recap of this episode, but it just aired yesterday so it's proved quite difficult, so I'll just make one up. Basically, this guy (who I think is named Dave...but we're going to call him that anyway), goes into the Australian Rainforest for some type of 'extreme survivor' show on his own. No crew, no food, etc. etc. Well, he gets this bright idea to take a stick that's maybe a foot long and stick it in a hole to see if there's an animal in there. Surprise! There is, and it bites his arm, but stays in the hole. So he leaves it alone and goes to make his 'shelter' for the night (which fails horribly, by the way). This is him in the middle of the night (not really sure if this video embed will work?)

So, the next day he wakes up and his arm is throbbing. Turns out: it was a poisonous bite. He remembers a village about 5 miles away and heads that direction for help. Monitor lizards, by the way, are known for striking their prey with their 'venom' and then stalking them for days until they are weak enough to eat. Dave's infection just gets worse and worse and he has yet to find the village, and he is being 'stalked' by something, and then we get this video:

Which is where it really started to creep me out. About ten seconds after this, Dave breaks down, knowing he's going to die, and says goodbye to his wife and daughter. About thirty seconds after that, something grabs him, his camera falls, he fights to hold on to grass but whatever it is pulls him away and we never see him again.

Apparently, his body was never found, but the camera was found by Aborigine trail guides about 1/4 mile from the village. There isn't really any evidence that this was a Megalania, and it could have simply been a regular Komodo dragon as they are known for doing the exact same thing. The only things that have brought this into question were that there were unidentifiable tracks near the camera, and that there was unidentifiable saliva found on the camera equipment. And since we know that there are hundreds of unnamed/undiscovered animals/insects/etc living in rain forests, they basically have nothing. Plus, I have been unable to find any information at all about this guy. And if he was real, then he has to have been the worst survivor-esque person ever and was crazy for doing this--other than that random moment of "how to find grub under bark," which is also taught by Timon and Pumba.

But it was still creepy, and the whole thing gave me the heebie jeebies all night. Yck.

P.S. Leaving home 10 minutes early for better parking is just as ineffective as it sounds. Welcome to the result.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Laughter Lives! Tuesday

Laughter LivesThis post is part of "Laughter Lives! Tuesday" on the Riggs Family Blog. Check our their blog to read everyone else's "Laughter Lives!" posts.

Laughter Lives Tuesday is a new thing started over at The Rigg's Family Blog (link above). It's basically just a day to post something funny that happened, or a "kids say/do the darnedest things" post. Be sure to visit their blog to read others posts, and please keep their daughter Abby in your thoughts as she braves through chemo!

Laughter Lives!

A few years ago, when my nephew was maybe four years old, we got him a goldfish. In his infinite wisdom, he named it "Fish" and it became a member of the family for the remainder of it's life. One day, we noticed that the tank was sans-Fish. We looked all around it in case it had made a suicide leap on it's own, but it was a no go and my nephew had no idea where it was...or so he said. Fish was simply just...gone. We emptied the tank and that was that.

A few days later a really odd smell had started to brew in my nephew's room. On the first investigation we found nothing odd. No food or drinks laying around spoiling, no super-dirty-clothes (better known as SDC's of Doom when there's a little boy in the house) so we waited until the next day. The smell was still there. My brother decided he'd go through everyone of my nephews drawers and closets, because we all know how famous kids are for sneaking snacks in and hiding them, and then forgetting about them. Well, turns out it wasn't a snack he was hiding as my brother pulled poor little Fish from the inside of one of my nephews socks.

His explanation? "He was cold!"

Monday, January 19, 2009

Hey, You Other Countries!

As some of you may have noticed, I added a counter and feedjit to my page because I thought it would be fun to see where you all were coming from to visit. Imagine my surprise when my first 20ish visits were from places I had never/scarcely heard of. Tucuman, Antioquia, Wien, Cataluna, Castilla y Leon, Ribe, Stoke-on-Trent, Kalmar Lan, etc. etc. So, my question to you is, who are you awesome people from other countries? Because I'd love to get to know you :)


The Weekend "Duh" moment:
Don't assume you can run in a straight line on a treadmill without looking. I did, so I closed my eyes, and paid for it about ten seconds later as I went flying into the cement wall behind me. I was booking it, going a good 7.5-8mph, and for the record, it hurt. A lot. And still does. But, a few minutes later I was laughing. A lot.


Wedding Upcap:

We've decided (well, I decided and told him that this is what we're doing and he seemed to agree) that we are going to wait a extra year before we have the actual wedding. We will still do the engagement this year and start planning it and everything, but with us living together this year and our combined salaries being less than a homeless person typically makes, we'd have nothing to put towards a wedding next year. It might not be a full two years that we wait, but it won't be next spring. It just depends. Once he's commissioned, we'll be fine. But, until then, it'll be rough. I'm kind of disappointed because it seems so far away, but it was my decision and I think it's the right one so we'll live with it.

I'm not one of those girls who's had their wedding planned since they were 10. As I've said before, I was really never positive I'd even get married, so all this is a whole new game for me. We will be getting married in his Catholic church, which I've decided is fine for me to sacrifice because at least the pictures will be gorgeous, and that's pretty much as far as we've gotten. The only thing I do know, is the type of dress I want. My sister's friend got married last year (and I babysat 9 children in a hotel room that night.......I do not recommend that. It's not worth the money. Trust me) and her dress was utterly gorgeous. I emailed her last week and she sent me 9823928 bits of information about it and everything else that I couldn't possibly thank her enough for, and I thought I'd throw one of the pictures she sent in here. I don't want this exact dress, of course, but something similar. And even then, I could try it on and it could look absolutely horrible on me, but so far this is kind of what I have my eye on. (You can also find her in the July 2008 issue of Redbook, she's just that awesome!)

The picture doesn't really do it justice. It's gorgeous. All beaded and amazing. It is not pure white, and that's fine with me. (Click on the picture to see it fullsize). What do you think?

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Conversations to Live By

Why I love my family:

Me: "I'm taking B up to my father's tomorrow."
Gram: "*insert long pause here* you not like him anymore?"

While at Target, in the training potty row looking for one for Baby B...
Me: "Oo look! A Dora one! She loves Dora."
Mom: "Does it sing when you pee in it? This one sings when you pee in it." *pushes button*
...We did, in fact, get the singing one. It's a princess potty. We are definitely grown women, can't you tell?

With Gran, Sister, Mom:
Gran to Sister: "I wish you wouldn't buy shirts like that. All your clothes are too big for you."
Sister: "Even this one?"
Gran: "Yes. It's hangs too much."
*Mom walks in from outside*
Mom to Sister: "I like that shirt babe, it looks good on you."

Voicemail of the week:

My oldest nephew: "Maymay, this is KyKy. I just wanted to tell you that we beat all the levels on easy on giitar hrro and now we can play all of 'em. Okay. I love you. BYEEE. looooove you. love you lots. really, i love you. okay. love you."


Friday, January 16, 2009

Friday Favorites!

I've decided to start doing a post on Fridays of the week's most amazing/funny/stupid moments and things I've learned, because everyone can relate to the TGIF theory (and, maybe even the 90's shows).

But, you know me, and that probably means I'll make this post now and do it again in three months and mention it as if I've been doing it all along :) So, we'll see!

Friday Favorites

-Walking by a sale of hats, gloves, and t-shirt at my University and seeing a nice grey t-shirt with the words "UNFUCK THE WORLD" on it. Yea, I'm pretty proud to be a member of this Uni haha.

-Spreading my happiness around to people who probably don't care, and not caring at all that they don't care ;)

-Hitting arctic temperatures this morning with a windchill of -19. I have no idea how MckMama does it, I couldn't stand this for very long!

-I had a customer the other day who was incredibly loud, stinky, and hard to understand. And every time he would finish a sentence he would blow out, and let me tell you folks: he was not a teeth brusher (did he have any, anyway?). But it was an endless source of laughter for a good hour after that.

-Coming to terms with the fact that my manager is pretty much always going to be a bag of douche, and will always have his tag sticking out of the back of his shirt. But, hey, I'll always laugh about it...and I'll probably eventually get fired for saying something to him that I shouldn't. Thus is life! ;)

-Spending some time with Ethan, who is only too old to tell me he loves me when anyone else is listening. Can't believe my baby will be 8 at the end of the month!

....this seemed more exciting before I started writing it, and then I suddenly forgot all of the awesomeness of this week. Hmm.

But, of course, we can't forget the pre-engagement! :D Best thing ever. I'm pretty sure I've never been this happy in my entire life, and I don't know that I could be any happier!

Onto another note. Casey asked a few weeks ago if any had significant others who read their blogs. My answer to that is: no. As you all know, my entire purpose in creating this blog was to figure all this military stuff out by reading all your blogs (yes, I am using you). B knows about this, but he does not read it nor does he have the address for it. In fact, we refer to it as my "secret blog"...though, 'secret' isn't exactly accurate if we talk about it anyway, ha! Actually, no one that I actually know has the address for this blog save one person around here and a couple who don't live around here, and that's simply because of two facts: 1. I talk about B in all kinds of ways and ask you lovely people for advice, and I prefer for him to think that my actions are solely made up by my own mind (because, why wouldn't they be? pssht) and 2. because due to the fact that B and I have known each other for 8 years, went to school together, and hung out in the same group of people all the time (it helps when you only have 33 people in your graduating class), most of our friends are mutual friends between the two of us. Thus, I write something about him, they read it, they tell B, and I'm in trouble. See? Yes, it's a tangled web of amazingness. So no, B doesn't read it!

But, your blogs are actually becoming increasingly helpful to us (even B has said so, since I relay some messages to him on occasion) in a lot of things. Specifically Melissa's as she ventures into base-housing-land and Lindsay's as she plans her wedding (I am actually stealing ideas. I'll put you in the bibliography ;]).

So, thank you all for continuing to tell complete strangers all about your life, I'd be lost without it!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

The Ghim Wym

I think I've officially decided I'm going to be ... productive in the "in shape" department. I did really well for the better part of last year, to be honest. I had knee surgery, and as soon as that was over I had a few months of pt, and then jumped directly back into soccer and was still working out on the side, thanks to my roommate who wouldn't go by herself and dragged me with her. I realize now, though, that that was mainly because of her and the fact that the place we went was about a twenty foot walk from where we lived...because I haven't been anywhere, really, since I moved out of there. And I'm no longer in soccer (I may fix that, as well). I did pick up biking/cycling/whateverelseyoucallit, but it's -2 degrees outside right now and that makes it difficult to bike in.

I stopped doing any exercise at all this past month really, save a measly six mile ride on the one day it was 60 degrees outside, because I have had zero appetite. I'm pretty much the complete opposite of a stress-eater...a stress-non-eater? Yes. And with the "awesomeness" of this past month, I've not been hungry at all. I've literally lost 10 pounds and not even once thought 'i'm hungry'. I basically had a cup of fruit for lunch and a cup of yogurt for dinner and a whole bunch of water in between. But, that doesn't leave a lot of room for stamina and I would only get like 5 minutes into a workout before I'd get lightheaded so I just stopped. But, I'm hungry now haha. So, back to the sweating!

I may actually join a gym for the first time ever. I've looked at a couple in this area, and there are some pretty decent choices. The contenders:

VLF: I have an appointment tomorrow to check out a gym a bit south of here, an all woman's gym, that costs around $16 a month. They have classes and a lap pool and sauna and all the fun stuff, but from my understanding of what other people have told me is that it's nearly impossible to get them to stop auto-renewing your membership after a year. It's on a very busy/traffic-filled road down the highway that I'm never on for any reason, and their hours of operation are not even slightly lenient. But, it's the cheapest, and there's a pool.

CRVS: This is also a womens only gym, and it's a lot closer to my house. But, it's more of a 30-minute-workout thing and I'm not really sure if that's what I want or not. And there's no pool :( The major pro for this is the fact that it's so close to my house, maybe a 10 minute drive at most, because it's also more than double VLF. However, it is a chain and it does have standards to uphold, unlike VLF.

MAC: This one is also very close to my house. This is probably more my style, because it isn't like...a "program." It's basically the same as CRVS other than the non-program schpiel. It's also a good $10 more expensive than CRVS.

BDYWKS 24/7: The name of this one says it all: 24/7 Fitness. This is, honestly, probably the best thing for me because I do a lot of weird things late at night and early in the morning, like workout, before most gyms are even open. The fee for this one is somewhere between $30-$35 a month. It's right next door to CRVS, so it's close as well. However, everytime I drive by this place all I see are guys. I never thought that bothered me before, but for whatever reason it is bothersome now haha.

Anyone have one gym that's a chain that they love and would like to share?

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Quello Per Rubare Il Mia Cuore Completamente

An Italian title in honour of Melissa, who has just made it to Italy! Yea, I am jealous :) Bonus points if anyone can tell me what it means! Hint: Peter Cincotti.

However, back on the home front, things are still spectacular. I'm annoyingly giddy, and don't see it ending anytime soon. I'm apparently "nauseating" as well (thanks Bekah) but, I can't help it, so deal! =D

My mom finally made it in and we just had the longest conversation we've probably ever had together. Apparently she and my grandmother had had a conversation a few hours prior to this, in which they discussed me and my mom stated "I think your girls a gone-er." and my Granny then replied "Yes. But, she can't be moving all over the world with kids!" ...that last part I'm adding in only because it allows me to point out how hypocritical she is, since she did the exact same thing. But, I love her, and value her opinion so...what can you do. ;)

Back to important things. The exact statement that came out of my mother's mouth went a lot like this: "Most of me is happy that you finally figured it out, since most of us already knew you belonged together. But part of me is sad that my baby is leaving me. And all of me is afraid to tell your dad." Yay, she's pretty much awesome. The conversation actually went as well as it possibly could (I blame this solely on the fact that I started it with "So, I have some news. I'm not pregnant, just to clear that up"). She's was crying, I was crying, and all in all it was really nice. She applauded my planning efforts, and told me she was happy for me and especially happy that I was happy, and that she was glad that we were able to keep our heads on straight about all this.

And then said she needs her time to be completely okay with it. Exactly what I would have expected :D Come on now, you didn't honestly think I got my level-headedness from my father's side, did you?

She even started asking me questions about the wedding and how big I wanted it and where I wanted it and....I haven't ever started thinking about that stuff haha! I do know that having four parents and more random surrogates that all have family and all have friends makes "I just want a small wedding with family" an event small enough to just squeeze into Buckingham Palace (think the queen would mind? she's not there that often, anyway). Just doing the quick math, my family alone, only spawning as far as aunts/uncles+their kids (no friends) and not allowing anyone to bring a guest is 70 people alone. But, these things I am not concerned with currently. At least, not until I have a completely boring day and need something to do. ;]

Because the official engagement isn't happening until May, we have decided not to tell our mutual friends--except my best friend, because she knows everything...typically before I do. There are only a few of my friends who know now, and then those random 70 other people I told... ha! But, the most important thing is our mutual friends because we know the extent of shock in which this is going to bring upon their general formation. We're pretty excited for that! :D

That's all for tonight. I'll go smile to myself now.

Monday, January 12, 2009

The Decision: YES!

Thank you all for your advice on this past entry, it did help a bit!

I had been wrestling with this for a week or so before I posted it, and I think writing it out and analyzing it on paper really helped as well (I'm pretty sure the writer's brain should be it's own genre of human).

We had serious discussion night tonight (the worst night of all, we should probably wear mourning clothes on these nights) and got everything out in the open for both of us. We know our timeline and our plan. We are going to move in together this summer, probably around June-ish, and we will be engaged sometime in the month before that. He wants to be engaged before we move in together because of his family and Catholic values and all that jazz, which is fine, but we are both big believers in the live-with-them-before-you-marry-them philosophy so we both know this is the right thing to do. I'm pretty sure normal people don't set a date to get engaged, but then again we've never been normal! ;)

B wants to be in active duty for his entire career in the Air Force. I know this. It's what he wants. But, we were talking about this and my concerns with being away from all I've ever known and he said this: "I have to get my 4 years of active duty done. But, if after that we are stationed somewhere and you decide you can't do it and want to come back, I will go reserve and we can come back to Ohio." This statement made everything right for me. Not because I know that's what's going to happen, because I don't and I really don't want it to happen, but because he's willing to give up everything he wants for me. I love him so much :D

So: Yes! I'll be a married woman in 2010!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

On Marriage and the Future

I should probably start this entry by saying if none of you read this, that's perfectly fine. It's more of a me laying things out for myself post. But, if you want to and maybe offer some advice, then I'd be eternally grateful ;]

B has decided in his own mind that we are getting married. This wasn't really a secret, and to be honest I had thought this from the beginning. But, it's a lot different when you are the one thinking about it and what he is thinking is a mystery, I've decided. Because earlier this week when B and I were sitting on the sofa every sentence coming out of his mouth involved a shifting of words: if was suddenly when, me was suddenly we, and I became us. We haven't really talked about this other than a few words, because I'm really not sure how I feel about this.

I thought this was what I wanted. I thought that it was fine, that I saw myself with him and in the military for 20 years and it was perfectly fine. But, this small change in words threw me for a say the least. B and I graduated high school together, went to college at the same time, and had planned on graduating at the same time. However, I transferred colleges and lost a good year in the transfer (and even that is pushing it). He'll graduate next year and will be stationed in the summer, but I'll still have a year of school left. If I transfer then, I will lose at least another year...if not, two. He said he could see if he could be stationed at the base about an hour and a half from here, and then we could do both, but I know he wants to be in NC and doesn't want to be stuck here for four years for my one year of school. Another thought is that I could stay here and go to school for that year, and we could switch weekends driving back and forth and I'd be with him on breaks and such--we'll be apart longer when he's deployed anyway, it would be almost like a test. But then the other question we get married before he's stationed or after? Because if we wait until after, then we run the risk of him being deployed and us being stationed away from our families etc. etc. on whatever date we choose. But, if we do it before, and we opt to do the me here, him there thing...then we are going to spent our first year of marriage apart and that's...odd. Ahh! What do you think?

And I guess the bigger question to ask before any of that is even considered, is is this what I want? I have a massive amount of family here. All I've ever done is been around family. We all live on the same street, we have monthly family meals at my grandmothers, my uncles fix everything that ever happens to anyone's vehicle, we work. I've always been the kind of person who enjoys finding one place she loves and staying there forever. I mean, I knew this going in, but I thought I was okay with not having that--maybe I'm not. How am I going to handle moving around the world every four years and being away from everything I've ever known? Am I going to be miserable? Or will it work? Plus, I'm only 21 years old. I always thought I'd be older when this happened, if it even happened. I always saw kids in my future, but getting married was a different story...I was never positive that would ever happen, especially to a military man. I've never really been the kind to take a backseat to any man (woo, girl power! ha). Am I ready for this at 21? I'm really not sure if I'm ready to give up the 'me' years. I just got them back, because for 5 years I was mom to my nephew, and I didn't even start the 'me' years until about two years ago.

It's all weird and up in the air. I love him to death, I do, but I feel like every decision that is going to run the rest of my life has to be made right now. Do or die. And I'm not sure which one I should do.

Any thoughts?

Saturday, January 3, 2009

2008: The Year of Magical Thinking

Yay for boring books by Joan Didion titles (maybe I'll have better luck).

2008 is now over, and I've just finished all the Christmas' and birthdays with all of my siblings and extended family (at least, those I am doing it with). (Inset: while I was writing this I remembered one more birthday gift unopened in the other room from Honey, so I'll open it after this ;]). There isn't really a definite way to describe this year in all it's infinite glory, both Jesus and Hitler sized, but it deserves some bit of recognition for having both happened and being over for good.

I won't go into grueling details of the year at it's worst, because anyone who knows me well enough knows the struggles this year has brought me and my family, and with it my move back to my hometown. With my mother's cancer and other less interesting family issues, it most certainly has not been a year for the books in that department, but we stuck together and got through it and there's no where to go from here but up. We've learned that there is too much lost in being angry or sad, and that Buddy the Elf had one thing right: 'Smiling's my favorite!' It's not worth it to be pissed all the time--you hurt no one but yourself. A simple smile and joke make things much more bearable even when it doesn't seem like there's anything to hope for. That's probably the most valuable thing my mother ever taught me. Well, that, and that playing hookie from highschool to get a tattoo with your mom is the best memory you'll ever make. She's the Lorelei to my Rory, and always will be.

This year also brought the most extraordinary vacation I'll probably ever take in my entire life. I spent a week in England with a few friends, all of who I met up with when I got there, and then a month in Kenya, Africa with a group of 12 Brits that I had never met before. It was my first trip out of the country (well...minus Mexico) and my first trip anywhere (minus Maine) by myself. The first night in London was incredibly scary thanks to the ghetto we were in, and I ended up in the hospital in Kenya with a huge fever that they could only tell me in celsius what was, and neither one spoiled it for me in the least (though, it did make me incredibly glad I had travel insurance). I miss the people I met and became friends with there, and I cried when I left for a solid hour in the cab.

2008 also brought the arrival of legal drinking age. For most people, I think, this is a bigger deal than it is to me. I have been 'allowed' to drink for years upon years by my parents, and the only time I've ever had enough to get me in trouble was when they had no idea I was doing it (lesson learned, ya). My mom made the comment when I left that night that 'it doesn't seem right that you aren't having your first legal drink with me'. I said 'I won't drink anymore than I do now, and you know it'. We laughed, but it's true. I really don't drink much. I'm a lightweight, and don't really enjoy the taste of alcohol. So, my last exciting birthday for a while is now over--now for 55! Senior menu!

But, mostly, 2008 brought a realm of unfamiliarity that we needed and learned from. I used to be able to close my eyes and see exactly what my future held for me, but this year I learned that living in the present is more important than worrying about the future. Plus, I might be looking at a future that is absolutely nothing like what I imagined for myself, and that is (oddly) perfectly fine with me because I love him, and that's all that matters.

We said goodbye to:
Sean (April)
Norb (April)
Flora (June)
Judy (June)
Edna (June)
TJ & Stephanie (September)
& Laura (December)

We said hello to:
Braylynn (Dec 07, but she still counts)
Arabella (February)
& Kylie (August)

In conclusion, this says nothing important in the least but I'm bored so welcome to my rambles.

Peace out, 2008. To 2009: Bring it on.

Happy New Year!

P.S. It was a gorgeous scarf and gloves. Kudos, Honey. Kudos.