Friday, December 31, 2010

End of 2010

Overall it was a pretty good year.  School was overwhelming at times – both teaching and grad school.  I’m happy to be in a relationship again and I really like Matthew a lot.  It’s been hard not seeing him for two weeks now, but he’ll be headed back tomorrow.  No plans for tonight.  It’s not the first New Year’s eve spent alone so no big deal.  I went and had dinner with my friend Kirsten tonight.  Josh is gone to a party at his girlfriend’s house.  I have a small bottle of champagne in the fridge that I’ll open sometime tonight.  Not sure if I’ll stay up until midnight.  I can’t call Matthew since he doesn’t have cell service at his house in Indiana.  Going to do some housecleaning and laundry.  Might start another book.  My Kindle is on its way, but probably won’t get here until sometime next week.  It’s really cold here.  It is supposed to get down to 10 degrees tonight.  No precipitation though.  We had a little rain and wind last night but that’s it.  Tomorrow I have to do some work for the choir director at church.  I still have school work to do, but will have all day to work on it.  I guess I’m going to call it a night and see if I can stay awake until midnight at least.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Making progress

I didn’t go to school yesterday either, but I did work from home and got quite a bit done.  Today I did go to the school and stayed there about 4 1/2 hours.  I’ve also worked from home another 2 1/2 hours and am making progress.  There’s still a lot of little things to be done, but I’m getting much closer.  I’ve been staying up way too late and sleeping in which is a bad habit to get into – especially when I have to go back to work in just a few more days.  I just took an ambien in order to force myself to get to sleep a little earlier (and wake up earlier – hopefully).  Tomorrow I still have lots of work to do and my choir director wants me to help her with converting some computer files as well.  Heard from Matthew briefly today – with his limited cell service I should be glad to hear from him when I can I guess.  He’ll be back in two more days so that will be a relief.  I miss spending time with him. 

It took 4 days, but my Kindle is finally on its way.  I got my confirmation email that it shipped today.  I hope it will get here by this weekend so I could play with it some. I’m not sure how much time I’ll have once I get back to the grind.  At least no college classes!  But now I’m facing further yearbook deadlines and our big fundraiser this month.  If I survive this month, I think it will be smoother sailing afterward.  I’m not really worried about my Capstone experience – writing three essays in a week shouldn’t be a problem – I’m a last minute kind of person anyway.  I am going to take off three days from school in order to write.  But that isn’t until February. 

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

So I lied

I didn’t get back to work on Monday as planned.  I went to the grocery store and got stuff to make dinner for Josh’s friends again, then I locked myself in my room and read, watched t.v., and surfed the web.  Yesterday I cleaned my desk and then went shopping with a friend.  I had $65 in Kohl’s gift cards to spend and I spent all of it plus another $25.  But I got three sweaters, a pair of jeans, a pair of khaki pants, and a jacket.  We then went to the mall and I bought a pair of black jeans.  After that we went to Target and I bought a pair of sweats – I don’t have any that aren’t stained or have holes in them.  We then went to Applebee’s for dinner.  I had a perfect margarita which was very yummy and a steak with shrimp for dinner.  My dinner was very good but they messed up my friend’s order.  She asked for a special salad but didn’t want the pico de gallo but when they brought it they said they couldn’t get all the pico off which is ridiculous.  She tried eating it, but couldn’t stand it with the onions in it.  She sent it back and got a plain ceasar salad with chicken.  The service was really slow as well.  So I came home and didn’t do much of anything and tried going to bed around 10 after taking one tylenol p.m.   I was still awake by 12:30 so I took another.  I didn’t get to sleep until sometime after 2:00. 

I slept in this morning and now I’m trying to get myself out the door and to the school to work.  It’s not going very well.  Matthew texted me today.  Turns out his cell phone doesn’t get service at his house in Indiana.  When he moved to Texas he switched to Sprint from Verizon and now he doesn’t get a signal so I only hear from him when he’s headed into town or something.  He did say that he missed me and that he wished he would have booked his return flight to come home a few days earlier.  He will get in late Saturday and I’ll be picking him up from the airport. 

Well, I guess I should put some clothes on and get my butt out of this bed.  I think I’ll pick up some lunch and head to the school and see if I can motivate myself to get some work done. 

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Year in Review 2010

I’m posting this a few days early, but what the heck – here’s this year’s review of 2010.

1. What did you do in 2010 that you’d never done before?

- Went to football games to actually watch the game and not the band.

2. Did you keep your New Years’ resolutions, and will you make more for next year?

I rarely make resolutions and generally don’t keep them if I do. I did intend to lose weight last year and I did accomplish that goal losing about 20 pounds in total (on a good day). As far as resolutions for this year – my plan is to simply survive the rest of this school year and become the librarian next year. As far as I know that is the plan at this point, but definitely won’t count the chickens before they hatch!

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?

Not exactly – see #4 below.

4. Did anyone close to you die?

I had two friends this year who both had babies that they carried full term and died before they were born.

5. What countries did you visit?

No new countries but did get to go to Florida and ride a bunch of new roller coasters.

6. What would you like to have in 2011 that you lacked in 2010?

More time to simply enjoy life, more dates with Michael, more love.

7. What dates from 2010 will remain etched upon your memory?

July 29 – First time I met Michael in person. October 28 – First official date as a couple. October 30 – Eagles concert with Michael – best date ever.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?

Finishing up my grad school classes with a 4.0 GPA. Meeting someone that I find to be wonderful who seems to like me as well.

9. What was your biggest failure?

Not getting that damn yearbook finished.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?

No, was sick a little off and on, but nothing major.

11. What was the best thing you bought?

My new laptop with my tax refund check. New camera. Two new printers (one laser, one ink jet). I’m giddy for technology.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?

Josh still has a 4.0 AND he found a job this year. Michael for getting his head out of his butt and realizing it is ok to date me.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?

Some of my students who refuse to try and have the capability of doing better.

14. Where did most of your money go? – school books, other books, gifts – and Walmart where I buy groceries and such.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?

Dating again – first time in about 5 years with the exception of the bizzaro thing last year with Thomas.

16. What song/album will always remind you of 2010?

To Get Me to You – by Lila McCann – makes me think of my relationship with Michael.

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:

happier or sadder? Much happier
thinner or fatter? Thinner – a size smaller
richer or poorer? About the same money-wize – financially stable.

18. What do you wish you’d done more of?

Reading for pleasure, relaxing, roller coaster riding

19. What do you wish you’d done less of?

Worrying, procrastinating

20. How will you be spending Christmas?

Well since Christmas is already over, I guess this question is pointless. I basically did nothing this year except make dinner for Josh and his friends. Next Christmas – who knows – I hope I’ll be able to spend it with Michael.

21. Who did you spend the most time on the phone with?

Probably Josh or my aunt. Michael and I talk, but rarely on the phone.

22. Did you fall in love in 2010?

Not completely, but I admit that I’m in the process of falling.

23. How many one night stands in this last year?

Thank goodness none.

24. What was your favorite TV program?

I hardly got to watch t.v. – but still like Chuck and Psych.

25. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?

No – I rarely find myself in a position where I hate someone. Sure, there’s always someone that I don’t like much, but pretty much nobody completely rubbed me the wrong way this year.

26. What was the best book(s) you read?

The Book Thief and now I’m hooked on the Jack Reacher series by Lee Child. I ordered a Kindle just so I could continue reading without adding to the growing stacks in my house.

27. What was your greatest musical discovery?

Not sure that I made a new discovery in terms of music this year – though I did realize that I do like the Eagles after getting to go to their concert – rediscovering their music so to speak might be the best discovery for this year.

28. What did you want and get?

A relationship that makes me happy with someone I really like and respect. A 4.0 in my graduate school classes.

29. What did you want and not get?

A job as a librarian.

30. What were your favorite films of this year?

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows part 1. Other than that, I didn’t really see many movies in the theater.

31. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?

I turned 41 and spent it with Michael who made me my favorite dinner of spaghetti. It was a very nice birthday, and the company was amazing.

32. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?

Being able to figure out what goes on in Michael’s head.

33. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2010?

Again – I have no fashion concept. I did try to wear more jewelry this year – so I guess that’s my addition to fashion.

34. What kept you sane?

Writing/blogging, dating, knowing that there’s a light at the end of the tunnel and this is probably my last year of teaching.

35. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?

Can’t think of anyone in particular. I have a little more admiration for Robert Downey Jr. – I used to not really like him at all, but I did enjoy his performance in Sherlock Holmes – so that is saying something.

36. What political issue stirred you the most?

The fact that the Texas legislature continues to screw up education and yet people still voted most of them back in office.

37. Who did you miss?

I’m missing Michael right now because he’s gone for Christmas break. It would have been nice to spend more time with my other family members this year like my sister, dad, and brother.

38. Who was the best new person you met?

Michael by far!

39. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2010.

Sometimes people surprise you in good ways and that you don’t necessarily have to give up looking for love for it to find you, but you have to really be open to finding it.

40. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year?

“There's a light at the end of this tunnel
There's a light at the end of this tunnel
For you, for you
There's a light at the end of this tunnel
Shinin' bright at the end of this tunnel
For you, for you
So keep holdin' on”

~Third Day

Monday, December 27, 2010


“Words are, of course, the most powerful drug used by mankind.”
Rudyard Kipling

I’m a connoisseur of words.  I read them, collect them, write them.  They move me, devastate me, inspire me, educate me.  I can’t say I’m an avid book reader – though I do love to read and find myself absorbed in books once I get started.  Sure, I haven’t read a lot of the “classics” so to speak, but I do get caught up in another world when I take the time to read.  It’s not just books.  Though I can’t just read anything that comes my way – like a newspaper, I’ll skim and glance at it mostly – I read other things like blogs, magazines, poetry.  When I find quotations or passages that speak to me, I save them.  I write – though I wouldn’t say my blog is going to win any awards – most of the time it is quite dreary and mundane and often ends with me going to bed – but I do write beyond the scope of this blog.  I have probably four journals at home in which I’ve penned thoughts over the course of several years.  I was a writer even back in my teenage years where I’d pour my heart out onto notebook paper.  I’ve written poetry, letters that have never been mailed, thoughts and pains on scrap pieces of paper.  Sometimes just the writing is necessary to get the flood of emotions out.  It isn’t necessary for the recipient to receive the words, it’s enough to have forced them out of my thoughts into some form on paper.  Sometimes that is where the healing begins.  Beyond the printed word there are those that are spoken and even unspoken.  You know the saying “Sticks and stones will break my bones, but words will never hurt me?”  What a lie!  I would much rather have the sticks and stones because words can be so much more painful.  Even the lack of words can hurt.  Silence has a power that can shatter a soul. 

So why this diatribe?  I just finished reading one of the books that I got for Christmas called The Book Thief.  It was an amazing book that had me crying for the last 50 pages or so.  It just hit me as to what power words can have on me.  I cannot imagine not having the ability to read and appreciate the words of others.  Sometimes I find that others say things far better than I ever could so I borrow their words from time to time – like with the music project I did for Matthew.  In addition to the music I gave him, I made him a book that contained all the lyrics to the songs on the player, but I also put copies of Postsecret cards that had special meaning to me, quotations that I found to be inspiring, some poetry I had written, a list of reasons why I like him, and a letter than summarized why I put the book together.  But I’m wondering if the power of words moves other people as it does me?  Perhaps it only affects those that have found an appreciation in them?  Maybe my brilliant idea of a Christmas gift wasn’t so brilliant.  I think of my students who say that they hate to read and feel sorry for them, because they will miss out on so much by not experiencing the power of words.  But these same students can get caught up in the words of some rap song – so they can still hold power – it’s just in another format.  I just wonder are there people that are not affected by words at all?  Or is it a matter of finding the right words in the right combination in the right delivery before an impact is made? 

Sunday, December 26, 2010

A Quiet Christmas

Not that past Christmas’s have been relatively loud, it was just rather uneventful.  Josh and I had the Christmas eve Mass on Friday.  I sang in the choir and Josh played clarinet.  It was a nice service and the music was really good.  We came home and decided to open presents Christmas eve since Josh was going to go play at the Christmas day Mass.  I went over to my friend Kirsten’s for a bit to give her present to her.  I visited a while and then came home.  Then Josh and I opened presents.  He even filled my stocking which I think was a first in a very long time.  I got Josh some items that were on his Amazon wish list such as some orchestral scores, music books and a CD.  I also got him a Weather calendar (which is a traditional present) and as a surprise, I got him a GPS for his car.  He has gotten turned around and lost a couple of times on his way back home so I thought the GPS would be beneficial.  Josh got me books and put candy in my stocking.  Matthew and I exchanged gifts on Monday before I took him to the airport.  He got me a silver necklace with a treble clef from James Avery, two candles, and a really pretty journal.  I gave him a scarf that I crocheted, a book (The Five People You Meet in Heaven), a movie (The Sting – which is his favorite), an mp3 player (Sansa clip) that I put some music on for him, and a book I created for him.  He seemed to like it but I couldn’t really tell.  I don’t know if he’s listened to the music or not yet.  It kind of frustrates me because we’ve barely communicated since he’s been gone.  I’m trying to not let it bother me.  I know he’s spending time with family and has been busy, but I thought he’d at least call me at some point. 

Christmas day was just another day for the most part.  I slept in and then made some breakfast shortly before Josh got back from Church.  Then I did nothing for the most part.  I read some, got on the computer, napped, watched t.v., and then made supper for Josh and a couple of his friends.  I made fettucine alfredo with chicken, salad, and rolls. 

Today Josh and I played at Mass again.  I came home and napped.  And read, and web surfed, and watched t.v. … again.  I need to start getting some work done.  Tomorrow I plan to work on school stuff.  I also need to go shopping at some point.  I have some Kohl’s gift cards to spend as well.  I’ve been eating and eating as well and that will need to stop soon or I’ll gain back the weight I lost last year.  I’m still debating the Kindle purchase.  I do want an e-reader, but reading the reviews hasn’t convinced me yet. I’ll give it more thought tonight and try to make a decision soon. 

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Still Unmotivated

It’s 11:30 in the morning and I’m still in bed.  I’m awake, of course, but I have not really gotten out of bed other than to go to the bathroom, let the cat in and out, and feed the cat who thought she was going to die of starvation.  I stayed up until around 1:00 a.m. last night watching t.v. and reading.  I did go up to the school yesterday to see if I could access the yearbook files.  I could access half of them, so I started copying them over.  I thought about going back up today but it might be pointless until I can get to the first half of the files where I hope the pictures I’m needing are. 

I didn’t hear from Matthew all day yesterday, but did get a text this morning and it sounds like he was busy all day doing things for his parents like shoveling snowing, plumbing things, etc.  Perhaps HapJoy is right and he just needs his cave time.  I have read the book Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus but it was a long time ago.  I think there’s more than the cave thing though.  He’s still waffling on the relationship itself.  I’m just not sure which way he’s going to go at this point.  But I’m just hanging in there to see what will happen.  Perhaps now instead of attracting perverts, I only attract the commitment-phobic men. 

Tonight I have our last choir rehearsal and then tomorrow is Christmas eve Mass.  I’ve still be reading a bit these days which is nice.  I read two of Lee Child’s books which feature a character named Jack Reacher.  I love series books with a continuing character so now I want to go back and read all the other books.  But then I look at my bookshelf and realize that I have way too many books.  So now I’m thinking that maybe I need a Kindle.  But then I was planning to hold out and get an iPad in the spring after my tax refund comes in.  But then I’ve been reading about eReaders and many people swear by Kindle even when they have iPads because the iPad can get really heavy compared to the Kindle and the iPad is difficult to read in bright light.  So now I’m thinking about getting the Kindle, but wondering if I need just the wireless or pay the extra $50 for the 3G capability.  I think that in most scenarios, I wouldn’t need the  3G because I would purchase books from home before going on trips or I would probably have access in hotels and such.  But then there would be that one time that I needed it and wouldn’t have it – but I don’t know.  It’s just so confusing.  But I’ve been looking at buying used copies of the books I want, and by the time I pay for shipping, it is almost as much as it would cost as an eBook and they wouldn’t take up more room.  Still not sure, but if you have a Kindle, iPad, or other eReader, I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Two Days of Nothing

I have spent the last two days basically doing nothing.  I really had the intention to go up to school and work, but my motivation just isn’t there.  I have read books instead.  I found a new author that I think I like.  I need to go back to the earlier books and see how they begin.  I took Matthew to the airport on Sunday.  I’m feeling like things are a little off with him, but I’m hoping that he is just needing his vacation time and nothing more.  I can’t really explain it right now, but it’s that intuition that I have that is usually right in some way.  I figured that I wouldn’t really hear from him much, but he has texted me some.  Yesterday I braved the crowds and went to Best Buy and the mall.  It wasn’t horrible, but I didn’t stay out long.  At Penny’s I got Josh some tank shirts that he wanted and I found a new dressy dress for me to wear at the Koobraey awards at school.  Today I didn’t even get out of the house.  I wore my pajamas most of the day and then changed into sweats.  I cooked some dinner and even ruined the rice a roni.  I’m almost finished with my second book in two days.  I do need to get up to the school tomorrow, but I’m not sure how long I’ll stay.  I’m feeling a little guilty – but not so much that I’m doing anything about it.  I’m going to finish my book tonight and just see what tomorrow brings.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Christmas Break

I’m not sure that it will really be much of a break, but I am glad that I don’t have to teach classes for two weeks.  Matthew came over for lunch on Friday and then he went to do some shopping.  I finished up his gifts and got them wrapped on Saturday morning.  I cleaned house – amazingly, and went to the store to get groceries for the week.  I got stuff to make cashew chicken and then Matthew came over around 4:30 on Saturday for dinner.  Matthew, Josh, and his friend Dustin helped put the ornaments on the tree so I actually have everything decorated now.  Matthew stayed for dinner and then headed home around 7:00 since he had things to do in order to get ready to leave today.  He’ll be here in about an hour and we’ll exchange gifts and then I’m taking him to the airport.  He’s heading up to his parents’ house in Montana for a week and then he’s going to Indiana for a week so I won’t see him during Christmas break at all.  Hopefully absence does make the heart grow fonder. 

I plan to do pretty much nothing today.  I think I’ll watch some t.v. tonight, maybe start a book.  Tomorrow and a few days next week, I’ll go up to the school to do some work.  For Christmas Josh and I are staying home.  We’re going to have fettucine alfredo for Christmas dinner.  Most of my shopping is done.  I have a few more things to get, but I’ll head out one day next week and get the last few gifts I havne’t bought yet.  I did most of my shopping online already.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Still here

I was hoping that things would slow down now that grad school is done.  No such luck.  I’ve had to deal with grading millions of papers, yearbook stuff, Christmas stuff, parties, baking, and all sorts of other things.  As for good news, I made it through grad school with a 4.0.  I made A’s on both my final projects giving me a 97 ad a 98 average in my last two classes.  As for bad news, I don’t think I’m going to get either yearbook done anytime soon and I’ll be working on a lot of school stuff during the break. 

Josh will be home tomorrow or Friday.  Matthew has a church Christmas party on Friday so I don’t know if we’ll plan dinner another time before he heads out for Christmas break.  I still haven’t put the tree up so I guess I will do that on Friday or Saturday.  I’m so ready for school to be out.  I just want to sleep for about a week and then maybe I’ll get up and do some productive things.

I simply need more time right now.  I left school at 4:00 because I was just tired, but then I remembered that I needed to go to the bank to put money in Josh’s account so he would have enough to get home.  After that, I got a call from some friends in Canyon that needed help with doing a mail merge so I went over to help and I got it done after about 45 minutes.  I had to export an address book file in a CSV format, import into excel, clean it up and then create the mail merge.  So by the time I got home it was really too late to nap.  I talked to Matthew briefly on the phone, tried to lay down for a bit but gave up and had some leftovers for dinner.  Now I’m talking myself into going to church for communal reconciliation. 

I guess I better get going if I am going to make it by 7:00.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

One more week

I don’t know if I’ll make it, but I have just one more week until this semester is over.  It seems to have gone by both slow and fast.  I have so much to get done it the next week, I hope I get it all accomplished.  It doesn’t help that I didn’t get anything done that I really needed to.  Sometimes you just need a day off though. 

Friday my aunt and uncle came to visit so we all went out the dinner.  Matthew joined us as did my cousin and her son and his wife.  We went to Abuelo’s for dinner which is a really good Mexican food restaurant.  On Saturday I went to the school to do some work and then I went to Matthew’s around 5:30.  We went out to dinner and then to a movie.  We saw Due Date which I thought was pretty funny.  A lot of people are comparing it to Trains, Planes, and Automobiles, but I still liked it. 

I went back to the school to work today but didn’t stay long since I didn’t have an internet connection.  I gathered up papers to grade and just brought them home.  And then I took a nap.  And then I went shopping.  Then I came home and attempted to grade papers, but then I let myself get distracted with Matthew’s Christmas present project that I’m working on.  I still have a lot to do with it this week.  But I also have a Christmas party Monday evening, a Christmas Party after school on Tuesday, possibly Church on Wednesday, then nothing in particular on Thursday, and then dinner with Matthew and Josh and decorating the tree on Friday.  Matthew leaves to fly to his parent’s house for Christmas on Sunday.  I need to get him his presents before then. 

I should have gotten papers graded, but they’ll eventually get done.  I “intend” to get to school early tomorrow.  We’ll see how that goes.  I think I’m just going to go to bed and hope for the best.  But I will leave you with a picture of Matthew and me.  I’m not sure why I’m still using a pseudonym for him, but since my blog name is a pseudonym, I guess it worksDSCF1125

Thursday, December 09, 2010


I’m finished with grad school classes!  No more homework.  I submitted my last paper this evening, then went to choir rehearsal late.  I don’t have to worry about anything grad school related until February 14 which is when my Capstone week starts.  That is when I have to write three essays in the course of 7 days.  I just got home from rehearsal, poured myself a large glass of wine and I’ll be headed to bed shortly. 

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

I hope I survive

This is the last official week of grad school for me.  I’ve been out of pocket for a while because I’ve been overwhelmed with other things and I’m still overwhelmed, but figured I needed to post a little something. 

I have one major project and a paper due this week.  One is due on Wednesday and the other on Thursday.  I have about 1/2 the project completed.  I haven’t even started the paper other than getting the research for it.  I have a million papers to grade for school and the stupid yearbook to finish.  I think if I make it through this week, I might just survive.  It is still unknown at this point. 

I’m going to try to get the project done tonight and spend all day tomorrow on the paper.  I really just need time to stand still for a while.  I felt exhausted by the end of school today and still had much to do. 

I probably won’t post for a few days until I get through all this stuff.  I’ll let you know if I make it by Friday or Saturday.