Friday, March 30, 2007

dormancy

You would not believe what a difference a few days have made to the plants around here. I left my house on Monday and got back last night. I did a quick glance at things outside to make sure nothing weird was going on but it was dark. This morning I went out to water the porch plants and wow! So much has changed!

There are a few new things blooming (or getting ready to). However, the real change is in the trees, shrubs, etc. that were dormant for winter. I have six tiny little trees and I don't know what they are but they turn into sticks in the winter. I wasn't sure if they were even alive. Last weekend, tiny little leaf buds started showing up on them. Today, real trees. If they continue growing that fast they'll be 50 feet tall by June. It really is amazing. Now if someone had just finished weeding while I was gone...

Before I thought that everything could be related to Friends. Today I can't think of a single thing to tie into that show. I think Sex and the City can fill in the gaps, though. Dormancy? Anyone?

(And my current state over there is "dreamy" because I had a dream last night/this morning about Ami from Miami Ink. Love him. Let the teasing begin.)

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

life list

Have you ever reached a point in your life where you feel directionless? That may sound like a desperate, hopeless thought but it’s actually the opposite. I suppose I’ve always been a person with goals. Like every part of me, that probably came from a combination of my personality and my upbringing. Being raised by a single mother can really make you a capable woman. I’m very grateful for that.

I always knew I’d go to college. Even though very few people in my extended family had taken that route, I knew I wouldn’t entertain any other options after high school. I’d go to college and obtain a quality education that would lead me to a career. It was very important to my mother that we be able to take care of ourselves. Hopefully we’d have a partner with whom to go through life but you never know. The unexpected certainly happens.

So I went to college and then grad school. I’ve had several jobs, each building on the last. I’ve finally reached a point where I can rest for awhile. And, better yet, I actually enjoy my job and am proud of the company. This past weekend people were all talking about how they disliked their job and/or their boss and/or their salary. I really had nothing to contribute. I’ve been that person but made the decision to do something about it and did.

I also worked hard to own my own home. I’ve worked two jobs at a time. I’ve paid off debt. I’ve worked hard. Now I’m living the dream—complete with sore muscles, paint-stained clothing, and fingernails that look like a mechanic’s. And that couldn’t make me happier.

Now I’m feeling sort of directionless. I had a list and I’ve crossed things off of it. What I need now is a new list. It just feels like I’ve been so busy with other things I haven’t put much thought into what I want now. It’s a weird feeling to have when you consider yourself a productive person. So that’s what I need to do…take some time out and think on it.

What would you want to do in life if there were no obstacles in your way?

Sunday, March 25, 2007

spring has sprung

Instead of a compelling post of words, I bring you a compelling post of pictures. I'm very happy about the warm weather and the arrival of spring. I suppose in about another week and a half it will be 100 degrees but until then...

Please try to look at these in a glass-half-full kind of way. Weeding needs to be done. It's on the list. In fact, in some areas it has since been crossed off the list. And a few of these bulbs have since disappeared but they're fun while they last.















Thursday, March 22, 2007

mediocre

I would just like to state for the record that I haven't had a good, quality post in awhile--maybe all month. I realize this. (Ok, one minorly interesting note is that I just misspelled "realized" and made it British. Is working on a British study corrupting me?) I don't know what the poor posts are about. Maybe I'm tired from doing manual labor and have no mental energy left. Who knows... I will try to do better soon.

My house rocks. I would post more pictures but my computer is officially dead. Well, it will cost more than I'd like to fix it so I'm just having them recover the data. I'll get a new computer in June. That's when my company's technology bonus thingy comes through. Sweet deal.

I also got a tiny raise and a significant bonus this week. I got news of it anyway. It comes through over the next few weeks. This is very exciting for me since the largest bonus I've received to date was $40. Seriously. I'd rather have nothing. Now I have to figure out what I want to do with this extra cash. Most likely it will go straight into the house. Now, what project should I do? Maybe that will be the next poll question. But first I'll have to narrow it down to a few choices for you, my cyber peeps.

The only other sort of funny thing I have is that last night my brother and I traded chores. I asked him to bring his lawnmower over so I could mow my lawn while he's out of town. He needed to clean his house last night because, like everyone, he didn't want to come home to a dirty house. I cleaned his house; he mowed my lawn. We both felt like we won. I suppose one day when he gets married I'll have to mow my own lawn...

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

seeking boyfriend in rock band

I have a t-shirt that says that. I guess it should be pointed out that I have t-shirts that say all sorts of things. I like them even though they are meant for tweens and I'm 30.

I think this one is true, however. I dig musicians. Wait, not just any musician. A good musician. And their genre doesn't have to be rock but they have to be able to "rock" whatever their genre is... Take Jack Ingram. Technically, he's country. (If you're from here, you know that he's really Texas Country. There's a difference.) But, man, can he rock--his live performance at the rodeo was awesome. Unfortunately for me I think he's married with children.

Today Mat Kearney was on Ellen. He sounded good even on those high notes. It's refreshing when a singer sounds good outside of the studio. It's sad that it's come to that.

So if anyone has a musician (who isn't a loser) they'd like to send on over, I'll be home.

Monday, March 19, 2007

hello. my name is cjh and i procrastinate.

There are a few things I should be doing this morning that are work-related. On the To Do list is to take a few training courses, create a spreadsheet, and maybe have a teleconference. One course isn't until noon and I've heard no word on the teleconference. Ho hum.

What's not on the list: blog, try to figure out plans for the summer vacation, order Astros tickets.

It was an eventful weekend. Here's the list (in chronological order)...
  • Finished painting the living room orange. I like it. Now if only my new chairs would come in.
  • Cleaned. Bah humbug....who likes to do that?
  • Volunteered at the local neighborhood marathon. Those people amaze me. I had dreams of running one once upon a time. My knees had other ideas.
  • Had lunch for some peeps at my house. Good broccoli salad.
  • Thought, for the millionth time, that my yard really needs some work. Ignored it.
  • Went to the Home Show at the convention center. "They" (whoever "they" are) lied. It wasn't any different from the other one we went to a month or so ago.
  • Played frisbee golf.
  • Watched Stranger Than Fiction and The Holiday. The former surprisingly very good. Very different from his other movies. The latter made me and the brother's girlfriend make sighing girly sounds while the brother sat there silent. Could someone send me a cute foreign man? Anyone, anyone? Preferably one who doesn't sleep with the nanny.
  • Went to the craft show. Got in free (!!!) because I, too, turned 30 this year. Hey, I'll take the perks where I can get them. Bought some food items and a new purse.
  • Puttered around the house.
  • Thought of a few craft projects of my own.
  • Watched Unbreakable on tv. Not M. Night's best work...

So now I'm just biding my time till my noon training. What I'd really like to do is go to Hobby Lobby.

Friday, March 16, 2007

friday morning recap

It was an interesting week. Last week I was out of town from Monday-Thursday. Then I had to turn around and leave super early Monday morning. I really dislike traveling on Mondays. If I have to, I try to make it an afternoon flight. There's nothing worse than having to cut your weekend short by frantically packing clothes and work things, remembering at least 3 times that you've forgotten something.

So, as always when I need to get up before maybe 6am (this time 4am), I didn't sleep well. Part of it had to do with the time change. Had I really changed the time on my alarm clock? I was also thinking about the actual job I had to do the following day. My supervisor was accompanying me, it was a type of visit I hadn't performed at this company, and it was at a new location. How prepared was I really?

Monday morning I headed to the airport. Upon arrival, I was very thankful that I decided to cram all my stuff into a tiny carry-on. Spring Break. I had forgotten. Lines everywhere. And leisure travelers are very different from business travelers (but that's a whole other post). While I was in the long security line the electricity went off. Oh, did I neglect to mention that it was lightning and raining sideways? Yeah. So, oddly enough, they don't let people go through security with no lights on. Go figure. While I was standing there in line I started thinking that I would probably be late to Dallas. My supervisor was coming from Austin. We only had a limited time in Dallas so today may not go real smoothly after all.

Got through security and boarded. The time frame is looking good. Then the pilot says we're going to Dallas the long way to avoid the storms. It was a pretty bumpy flight up and even worse coming down. I was running about 20 minutes late. Not too bad. Everything else went well that day. We ate lunch here. It was really good for a chain. So, fat and happy, I headed back to Love Field to board a plane to OKC.

Tuesday went well. Wednesday started fine. I was finished at my site a little early and left for the airport at 10:30am. I didn't eat lunch because nothing at the airport appealed to me and it's only an hour flight. I'd grab something once I got home. That was my first poor decision. We boarded nearly on-time. Still Spring Break so still full flights. I picked the first empty (middle, all middles) seat that had a little overhead storage. Sat between two guys. Pulled out my book. The flight starts out ok. When we get close to Houston the pilot comes on and tells us that there are lots of storms, air traffic is delayed, and we're in a holding pattern.

At this point, the guys and I start chatting. We're going to be here awhile. Turns out the guy to my left is 39, divorced, works in plastics, and roomed in college with a guy who lived very near my hometown. The guy on my right was from Missouri and was the twice shot, thrice stabbed body guard for a fancy traveling stripper. He didn't look like body guard material. Interesting conversation ensued.

After we had been circling almost an hour, the pilot comes back on. We either need to try to land this thing or head to Corpus to refuel. As passengers, we were torn. We certainly wanted to arrive safely. If we landed in Corpus, though, how long would it take to get back home? I had rodeo tickets, people. But those storms looked bad even from above. Once we started going down through them, seeing very dark clouds and lightning, the male divorcee (is there a word for that?) and I were wishing we had taken the Corpus route. Oddly enough, we landed very well and it wasn't as bumpy as expected. It was hailing when we landed.

It then took me an hour to drive what is normally a 30-minute drive home. During the drive I heard on the radio that Rascal Flatts had cancelled. Instead, we were going to see Joe Nichols, Jack Ingram, and Clay Walker. I had been hoping to have some free time that afternoon. Maybe grab a coffee, buy a new pair of jeans. I ended up getting home at 4pm. Got into my house to notice that there was a little water on the floor in two of the rooms. Who knew where it was coming from? No time to think about that. Threw on some jeans and old tennis shoes (didn't want to get the boots dirty--yes, I own boots but they're cool and retro) and headed over to pick up the brother's girlfriend.

I was only in her apartment about a minute when it started pouring yet again. Sideways rain again. Got freakin' soaked on the way to the car that was parked very nearby. We make it to the rodeo and finally I get food. We find our seats and I take off my shoes. My jeans are still soaking wet from the knees down. My shoes and socks are wet. Very wet.

We watch the rodeo events. Then the shows. Joe Nichols. Not so good. During this performance the couple in front of us decide to break up resulting in beer getting flung on the only dry parts of my clothing. Then Jack Ingram. Really good show. Great hair. So cute I want to just put him in my pocket. Then Clay Walker. Eh. Ok show. Seemed like a nice guy. I put my shoes back on and we start the loooong trek back to the parking lot to head home.

During all this I was just entertained. Not freaked out or upset or anything. It was just one long adventure. One I would happily not relive. TGIF, people. TGIF.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

the purple room

So this is the purple room (the room that's the color of my brain apparently). One day it will be the guest bedroom but right now it pretty much holds some odd and ends. Unpacked boxes of candles and other decorative items. Pictures that have yet to be hung on walls. This is the view into the bathroom.

This is one of the items that will live in the purple room even once it's the some-other-color room. My grandmother had a sewing machine built into a table similar to this one. My mom admired it so my dad ended up doing this for her. It's a pretty nifty item. There are also a couple figurines that were Mom's and a jewelry chest that lived at my mom's parents' house once upon a time.


More of the same. In the corner back there is the doll house that my grandma made me when I was little. It comes complete with an attic where all the doll house furniture is currently stored. I turned it into a game storage unit.

Monday, March 12, 2007

shake your booty

...the song playing in the doctor's waiting room today as I waited to go in to talk to him about doing an Irritable Bowel Syndrome study.

Friday, March 09, 2007

coinkydink?

I went to buy paint for my living room today. It's called Burnt Brick and is one of the few house colors that won't be historic. When I was checking out the cashier complimented the color (they always do). She also said, "It matches your hair." It does. Then I started thinking that the kitchen color is roughly the color of my eyes (they have less green) and the dining room is about the color of my skin when I'm at my most tan (which is pretty pale). Coincidence? Who knows. I certainly didn't do it intentionally. But unless I want to paint something the color of the freckles my knees get in the summer or the color of my lips or gums (or teeth or fingernails), I'm pretty much through with using me as inspiration.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

show me how you do that trick

Last night I watched (for the umpteenth time) Just Like Heaven. Will Mark Ruffalo be my boyfriend?
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Love the quote o' the day: "Being powerful is like being a lady. If you have to tell people you are, you aren't." Right on, Margaret Thatcher.
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I'd like to point out to anyone who has read the book I'm currently reading, that I picked Seattle as a travel destination prior to starting the book.
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I had what some may almost consider a date while here in Shreveport this week. Almost. Did it qualify as my gut feeling, my reason for coming here? Probably not.
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I'm going home today! I miss my house. That's it for today's miscellaneous. Good luck getting the Cure out of your head. (If it's not in your head, how are you my friend?)

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

there's a bathroom on the right

Ok, so I've noticed that I often quote song lyrics in my titles. This one is a bit of a CCR stretch...

My house has 3 bathrooms. I know, who needs 3 bathrooms? Not me. As a person who grew up with only one bathroom, I thought two would be a good idea. It's nice to have a back-up. And it's nice to have one public and one private. Originally, the house had two. When the attic was converted into the master bedroom, they added another one. I hate the people who used to live here because of their choices when surfacing the bathrooms. Well, it could be worse but still...

This one is the room I'm trying to ignore. This picture shows it in its original state. This past Sunday I took to tearing off some of the wallpaper. I abhor the wallpaper. The floor is not so great either. And, just for fun, the door needs to be rehung. It doesn't shut all the way (thus, making it impossible to ignore).

I do like that there's a window and the sink is great. There's also good linen storage behind the door where I, in fact, store linens. The tub is nothing exciting. Don't you wish there were a claw foot? Me, too.

The next one is my bathroom. It has the same lovely wallpaper. It does have nifty built-in shelving (that's much more organized now than it was in this picture), another window (with a little ledge I use sometimes to put on shoes), and a garden tub. Good shower head, too. The flooring is peel-n-stick tile again. But, again, it's not as bad as it could be. One fun thing to deal with is that the cabinetry has to hold duct work. This makes for very limited closed storage. This is something I need to work on improving. And it would be nice to have lighting above the mirror. For any guys who read this, putting on make-up while being back lit isn't the best scenario.

And the last bathroom is the one off of the purple room (aka the guest bedroom). It started off as dirty sock grey. It is now a light yellow (the same color as the hallway in my brother's house...free paint). The decorations are the same as what was in my apartment bathroom. This was actually the first room I painted and decorated. That's only because it was easy. This room has a pretty snazzy shower...no tub...but you can sit in the shower. I haven't used it yet but I think it's cool.



Would you like to see the purple room? I'll save that, and all its glory, for later.

Monday, March 05, 2007

rainy days and mondays

Because my favorite airline treated me poorly a year ago, I received a $300 voucher. Suddenly, it's expiring tomorrow. Today I decided to go here for a few days in April...


I've never been but have always wanted to go. Maybe I'll drink coffee and listen to grunge while wearing flannel in the rain.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

the life of a single gal

My work computer was down part of this week. My fax machine, too. I think my house may be rejecting all things modern/technological. This explains the lack of postings.

Actually, I'm not in any real mood to post right now but thought I should so people know I'm alive. Last night I saw the episode of Sex and the City where Miranda buys her own place. I hadn't seen that one in awhile. She goes through the whole check-the-single-woman-box thing, too. And she heard something like "this whole, big place just for you?" And she almost choked on take-out and feared she'd end up like the previous owner--dead for a week without anyone noticing (except her cat who ate off half her face). I can relate.

The other day I locked myself in the bathroom with my cell phone to test the workings of the lock. Hey, it's an old house. If I were to get trapped I'd like to be able to call someone. It worked fine. But then a few days later I locked it and had thoughts of it malfunctioning, resulting in me being trapped in there until I starved to death (after eating whatever natural bath products I could find a la Friends) or were forced to throw myself out of the second-floor window.

(Ok, so maybe I'll post a little.)

When you've been single as long as I have and you majored in psychology, you can't help but create your own terms for things. (If someone has created these before, I'm sorry and I'll let you take full credit. I'm no Dr. Phil.)

The first term is "dating fatigue." Noun. An overwhelming sense of exhaustion that stems from being single and officially "on the prowl." One may feel this after a string of bad dates or after a period of time with no dates. Signs/symptoms may include actual fatigue, hopelessness, pulling one's metaphorical hat out of the ring, daydreaming about the Starbucks guy, and/or thoughts of recycling.

"Recycle." Verb. To reuse or think about reusing a previous boyfriend, date, special friend. In severe cases of dating fatigue, one may actually follow through with recycling. In mild to moderate cases, one merely thinks about recycling perhaps even to the extent of manifesting dreams about it. One thinks of these people in terms of "if only" (i.e., if only he lived in this country/were not married/were not a jackass) or idealistically, as applicable. Actual recycling never ends well.

Yes, suffering from dating fatigue. Dreams of recycling...