Sunday, December 21, 2008

Well geeze.
I've recovered from the flu, but the past few weeks I've felt like a big depressed walking panic attack. I stopped blogging because I can walk around depressed and survive. But if I turn to introspection (Don't laugh. I count this as thought. For reals.) I start to panic and I can't breath. And whenever I tried to comment on somebody's blog I felt like I was going to spread my crazy. If something good happened I felt like people would see through my congratulatory words to me screaming and if something bad happened I wouldn't be able to cheer you up, I'd just encourage you to go off the cliff with me. (No, no, not suicidal. Just occasionally binge drinking and (god help me it';s hideous I know, I know) smoking. As a friend said to me as she saw me pick up a cigarette "What the fuck? When did you start smoking?! Think of your ovaries!"
Fuck my ovaries.)

So. As soon as I start to think I'm going to clean out my four hundred strong google reader and get my shit together (I signed up for ICLW. Good for forcing me to get it together.) my computer's airport card dies. So my internet access is going to spotty at best.
But I promise to come back soon. I miss you guys.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Still recovering

I'm still alive, despite my worries about dehydration yesterday. I couldn't even keep down small bits of water. Isn't projectile vomiting fun? (/sarcasm)

I woke up today feeling a million times better and had some soup and just ate a small plate of leftovers. If I still feel good in a little while, I am going to try a small piece of sweet potato pie since I didn't have any on Thanksgiving.

It was good to see family, and Thanksgiving was okay, but I'm going to blame my sickness for being weak and too tired to write anything about it right now. Instead, I'm going to ask if anyone read this essay in the NYT magazine about using a surrogate. While I doubt I would ever be best friends with the author, I appreciated it and her honesty and was *disgusted* by the comments that people left. I get that people don't see infertility as on the same level as other diseases, but I don't understand the vitrol that it seems to inspire. What other disease gets you labeled as "selfish" for trying to treat it?

Saturday, November 29, 2008

I'll tell you all about my exciting (not really, but it was nice) holiday just as soon as I can stop throwing up. Right now I have menstrual cramps, a cold sore the size of Montana on my lip, and all I've had today is a little tea and ginger ale, all of which promptly came flying out of my mouth.

On the plus side, I don't think I will have any weight gain from this four day weekend.

Please, somebody put me out of my misery.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Thanksgiving

Oh Thanksgiving. I'm trying, I am.

I have been painful depressed the past few days. Not quite take all the food out of the refrigerator and curl up inside it depressed, just go to bed early and not talk to A because I don't feel like I can say anything that won't just be guttural wailing depressed.
I decided not to apply for that job I asked you all about. I know it's silly, but I felt like if I applied and got it I would feel obligated to take it for the money. And it made me actually cry to think about leaving my job. It's one thing if I have to leave it because of A finding work somewhere, but choosing to leave so *I* can move somewhere and take another job? I would not be happy. And I know that might seem irrational to many of you, but unless I absolutely have to , I am not going to leave. And A agreed. It didn't feel right to either of us.

So it's back to hoping A gets a job here in town. He's got a few classes he can pick up Spring semester at the U he was teaching at before, and while it will be part time, it should be enough to keep our heads above water for a bit. So we'll continue to tread.

I am feeling better today and looking forward to Thanksgiving. It is important to remember all the wonderful things I do have. (Like a husband who cleaned the house today - oh how I love that he cooks and cleans.) I am also so very very thankful to have such amazing people living in my computer.

A and I first became a couple on Thanksgiving, so it's always a nice memory to have. We knew each other and were friendly. He had told me to give him a call if I came into town and I did. We went out for coffee and I ended up staying at his apartment until 4am, talking.

We always do Thanksgiving with his family. They don't do Christmas, so this is their holiday. And they always do it up right. I mean, I always loved T-day food and all, but wow. This family can COOK. I do feel bad about my parents being all alone this year though. My brother won't be coming home to visit until March and my sister won't come back until Christmas. In past years, they spent Thanksgiving with their best friends in town, but last year their friends both died within two weeks of one another. We invited them to come with us, but my mom said they would be fine by themselves. We are leaving Charlie with them, which I think my mom is looking forward to. She really misses her dog and I know she is looking forward to retirement this year so she can get another one. In the meantime, her grandpuppy is a good fill in.

In addition to the usual family Thanksgiving dinner, we are in Indy in the morning. One of my friends from high school has a brunch every year that her mom has hosted since we graduated. Originally it was a way of everyone catching up on college break, but this is the eleventh year and we are hoping to go forever. There are usually ten to twelve people. We have drinks, eat fresh fruit and bagels and sweet bread and her mom makes the most delicious noodle kugel ever. (God, the kugel is something I know everyone looks forward to every year. It is AMAZING. I got the recipie a few years ago but it was missing the magic touch.) We get some silly turkey gift and take a group picture which goes in the official Turkey Book.

So after a huge brunch, a huge dinner, and leftovers on Friday, I will be back twenty pounds heavier, with more leftovers and sweet potato pie. Until then, I wish all of you a happy Thanksgiving. For those of you not in the US, I will eat some extra for you. It's a sacrifice, but one that I am willing to make.

EDIT: Oh! And I am thankful, despite the fact that I wanted to go to bed early tonight so I could get sleep before tomorrow, that I am about to go out and meet up with my friends. My old speech partner proposed to his girlfriend at a basketball game tonight and (I assume she said yes) we're all supposed to go congratulate them.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

I lead an exciting life

Sunday night always comes way too quickly. It was a good weekend though.
Friday we didn't really do anything, other than finding Samoa ice cream, but! my cheap move of the week was noticing that there were no rotisserie chickens. It was 6:45 and the sign said they guaranteed it between 5pm and 7pm. So I have a coupon for a free chicken! I called my mom and she was very proud. She thinks it's hilarious that I get such a kick out of stuff like that. I have the ability to get ridiculously enthusiastic about the most mundane things.
I also drooled over an online fabric retailer my friend told me about. A couple made me giggle though. I wonder if my boss wants a pillow made of this fabric for a Christmas present? (EDIT: Bwahaha...sorry Nancy, no, it's not vagina fabric.)

Saturday afternoon I went to my best friend's mom's house. His mom was having a jewelry show of stuff she had made. Darling genius D gave me a gift certificate which was very sweet of him, so I got a couple pairs of earrings and a bracelet.
I love D's parents. I hung out for a couple hours giving his dad shit and catching up with his mom. When they introduced me to people they said I was D's friend and that I was family. It's always nice to be included in somebody's family.

Saturday evening we went to my parents for dinner, and had spaghetti. There was also egg nog. Non-alcoholic. That's about as exciting as that gets.

Then today I went over to my friend M's house. She and her husband want to sell their house at some point and her garage was full of stuff. So another friend of hers and I helped her start organizing. It took six hours but we managed to take a huge load to Goodwill, throw out bags and bags, shred six years of documents they don't need, convince her husband that the moldy stuffed animals from his childhood would never again go to bed with him, and


EEK!

A lot of time was spent cleaning up a ton of mouse poop. And a mouse nest. And more mouse poop. And some nibbled paper. And some more mouse poop. Those fuckers *love* to poop. Luckily, M's other friend is of the non-squeamish variety and did the majority of the cleaning up. M's five year old wanted to help with the garage, but that gave us a great excuse to keep her inside. Gross. I must have washed my hands fifty times today.

So tell me you all did glamorous and exciting things this weekend so I can live vicariously...

Friday, November 21, 2008

My wild Friday night

I really don't keep track of my cycles anymore. I figure there is no point unless I meet Brad Pitt and then I can only assume I will wake up the next day pregnant with triplets and adoptive mother to twelve.
But I always have plenty of warning when my period is on its way. I become a raging bitch about a week beforehand. (As opposed to my usual sunshiney personality, y'know.)
Poor A. I've been royally beyond cranky today.

But you know what I found at the store today? Girl Scout Cookie ice cream. (They had Samoa and Thin Mint.) That helps. Now if those little girls would knock on my door with some actual Samoas, we would be in business.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Choose my own adventure? Nah. You do it.

I'm probably being ridiculous and there is a really obvious answer here.
Humor me anyways.

A is just not finding a job. I think it's a combination of a few things - I think there aren't a lot of jobs out there, his law degree isn't terribly useful since he didn't pass the bar and his experience is as an educator, all the ed jobs he's applied for aren't beginning until next fall and he might still get one but it's a long ways off. Also, I think he's depressed and not really doing much in the way of networking.
Many, if not most, of the jobs he's applying for are not here. And while I don't particularly want to leave if we have to, we have to. (Sorry Lollipop, no DC, but we are looking at BFE Illinois, BFE Ohio, St. Louis, North Carolina (Kate!), and BFE Colorado.)

So there is a decent chance that we will move.

That being so...
I don't want to leave my job. I love my job. I adore my boss, I can bring Charlie to work, I think a lot of the stuff I do is really interesting and important and good. There is beer in the fridge, I can talk back all I want, and if this mythical baby ever comes into being my boss wants me to just bring the kid with and keep working.

There is a job posting in Ch*cago. I think I fit what they want pretty perfectly. They pay really well.
And Illinois mandates IF coverage.

If there is a good chance that we will have to move anyways, and I will leave my happy little job, perhaps I should apply for this job. Chicago is a big town and A would have plenty of time and a financial cushion while he takes the bar again and finds a job.

Of course, this job might suck, I might hate it, Al might find a job here where I want to stay, I wouldn't be able to bring Charlie or the mythical kid, we own a house here that lord knows we might not be able to sell and housing in Chicago isn't cheap. My parents are here, my friends are here (though we have a few in Chicago too).

Do I apply? I know that I might not even get it, that even if it is offered I wouldn't have to take it.... but I'm still hesitating.

Tell me what to do oh great internets.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Away Message

I just got home from work and I still need to do paperwork and I need to be back at 7:30 tomorrow morning, but I feel like I need to leave some sort of away message. I've been too busy to comment the past few days.
I wish blogging had something like facebook where I could leave my status. I don't mean to ignore you guys, I know there are important things happening in your lives and I promise to comment tomorrow night!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Do you see it?

So this is what the artboard on the building currently looks like:


And then there is the next proposal...

I don't want to post the whole thing, but below is the middle third of the picture my boss was certain was a lady's nah nah-nana. The original has an identical girl on either side and their hair meets in the middle. This is the middle.



Now imagine it twenty feet high, looming ahead of you as you drive into downtown every morning...

Monday, November 17, 2008

Change!

I'm so bloggy today.

So I can't post the vagina picture in it's entirety, but I will try and post the uh, controversial section of the picture tomorrow. I don't want to post the whole thing since it's somebody's artwork and presumably not in a public place yet, but I know you're all dying to see if my boss was correct.

In the meantime, I will show you a non-dirty picture.
A few weeks ago the adorable & sexy Annacyclopedia posted a picture of her new haircut (she looks beeeoooootiful) and I was like "Hey! That looks like my haircut!" I then made the absurd claim that I would post a picture of my hair. See, her hair *did* look like my hair - right after I got it cut and the stylist made it look all pretty. But my hair, although it is straight, is nutso and does not want to go in any normal direction. And I couldn't get it to look like Anna's again.
So no picure of it like that. Because then I got frustrated and, in a fit of boredem, cut some uneven bangs with nail scissors.

Sexytime, ya?

Er, maybe not.

Then today I decided to finish it off, so I went and got my hair cut.

Now is sexytime?
Ya?
Ok, it looks like angryandconfusedtime (maybe I should look at shit before I post it) but I do like it.
Why do I love my boss?
Because we got a proposal from the arts council people about a proposed piece to go on the side of the next door building. (They have a big billboard area that has a piece of art that gets switched out yearly.)
My boss looked at the proposed artwork and asked me what I saw. I told him I saw two mirror image women and he's like "That's it? You don't see the vagina? Because I see a goddamn vagina. Trust me, I know a vagina when I see one. And if those guys [next door] can't tell that's a vagina they're either gay or they don't spend the right kind of time with their wives."

Yeah, after he mentioned it, I could totally see the vagina.

The arts people are sending another picture proposal.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Freeeeeedom!

I don't know if I've ever mentioned my irrational phone phobia. I can talk on the phone to people I know, that's fine. But I have sometimes have mini panic attacks when it comes to calling somebody I don't. I psych myself out, thinking they'll not hear me right and think I am saying obscene things or I'll mishear them and respond by saying obscene things. Or maybe I'll just be nervous and "Fuck you shitwad" will come flying out of my mouth. Also, they cant see me, so what if they can't tell I'm using sarcasm? Is the meaning lost if you can't see me making a jack off motion in the air?
(I sometimes worry about this when I leave messages on people's blogs too. In my head I can hear myself saying one thing, but I think maybe without the inflection and scrunched faces people sometimes think I am just a weirdo.)
Anyways, I've always had this phobia. It's gotten better, but as a teenager when my mom told me to call the driving school to register for the class, I couldn't do it. I just knew that if I tried calling I would screw something up. So I didn't sign up to learn how to drive. It wasn't until the next summer, when I figured out I could pay my little brother five bucks to make him do it, that I signed up for driving school.
I can't believe it took me that long.
Once I went through driving school and got my license, it was like a whole new world. Indianapolis is sadly lacking in any real public transportation system, so being able to drive is really the only way to break free from your parents. I didn't have my own car, but I could borrow my mom's. (And my boyfriend had a car. What an amazing little Honda that was...) I loved being able to hop in the car and go wherever I wanted. Finally I was the master of my little seven mile universe.
As much as I love A, I feel like finally getting my car back on Thursday was like getting my license all over again. Two weeks of having to have him drive me to work every day was getting to me. And because his car is a stick and I am pathetic, (I never learned how to drive stick shift and the next person who tells me how much more *fuuuun* it is to drive a stick gets said stick shoved up their left nostril) I had to ask friends to pick me up if we did anything. It was like junior year when everyone else had their license and I had to beg them to let me bum a ride with them to the Perkins to drink coffee and play cards. Pathetic.

But now I have my trusty girl back. And let me tell you - getting new steering, tires and brakes makes a difference. She sticks to the road as we hug curves. She flies over train tracks without pulling. She actually stops when little kids and pregnant women run out in front of her.
Well. Little kids anyways. I make no promises about pregnant women.

Today A had a friend over to watch the football, and I ran out to the Ghetto Kroger to get them a frozen pizza. All.by.myself.

Yesterday? I decided I wanted to go to the Value City that was going out of business and had everything 80% off. So I went. All.by.myself.

Friday? I drove to work. All.by.myself.

Thursday evening? I drove up to a friends house to walk dogs for an hour in her dark crunchy-leaf neighborhood. Kind of all.by.myself, except for Charlie. Who also loves the freedom of the car.


**********
There were a couple of nice moments that come from not having my car. A drove me to work every day (and picked me up, which sucked for him, because it always takes me 30 minutes longer to leave than I think it will) and so it was nice to have that routine. Also, I babysat for a friend on Wednesday. I was supposed to have my car back, but the mechanic set off my airbags and had to have them reset, so I didn't get it back until Thursday. So A had to drive me way the fuck up into suburbia and since he would have had to turn right back around to get me, he stayed and watched the girls.

My friend M has the smartest cutest darn kids. Her daughter Am who just turned five a month ago is reading like a champ, flying through books without hesitation. She asks these amazing questions and has perfected her disparaging look when you try to talk around one of the answers.
M's one year old Av, the one she wanted to have at the same time as me, is totally edible. I could just gnaw on her cheeks all day. We brought Charlie and she was delighted to have a stuffed animal that would kiss her and steal her bear.
A and I had a great time with the kids. He's going to be such a good father someday.

But god I'm glad I don't need him to drive me around anymore.

Edit:
By the way, this heat thing? Awesome. I love it. And now I can screech at people to close the door because I am *not* trying to heat the entire world, do I *look* like I am made of money. Of course, by people, I mean Charlie when I am bringing him back in from going outside and he pauses before running into the house. I gotta practice though.
And the animals don't think it's all that warm. Thomas is sleeping under the covers like he always does
and both he and Charlie tried to sleep in my lap today.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Nirvana

Oh people. It is truly an amazing feeling, this "warmth" of which I had heard tell.
Last night I sat on my couch with a hat, scarf, blanket, long underwear, sweater, polarfleece over my sweater, and three animals who were all pissed off at me.

This morning I woke up with a cold, snot filled nose and said "No more!" I turned the furnace on. That's right. I was done being cold. Done.
A started to protest, then fell over frozen solid, so I flipped the switch. Within three minutes there was this strange sensation...

I could feel my toes.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Last week randomness

Is it really Sunday night already?
Last week was such an amazing week. All week I was sleep deprived and after Tuesday night, giddy. I can't count the number of times I cried, just feeling overwhelmed with pride and hope and joy all intermingled.
Indiana had the biggest change in Rs to Ds of any state. My friend M told me that when she was driving to school Wednesday and heard that Indiana had gone blue she started sobbing. It's been kind of like that.

On Wednesday I got to see the amazing Shinejil who was in town for a conference. I think we were both a bit loopy from the night before, but we had a nice time talking. She is seriously one of the coolest people I have ever met. If I could grow up to be her, I would, but I think it's too late for that, so I will just claim her as a friend and hope some cool rubs off.

Last night we went to a friends house for a re-warming party. K&B had their house broken into a few weeks ago, so they wanted to bring some good karma back in. A stayed home because he is depressed about the bar and his job situation and there were some people from his old department there who are kind of assholish. I said A was sick and avoided those people. I really hope something works out for A soon. A couple of my friends met up with him for lunch a couple of weeks ago and have separately told me they're worried about him.

This morning I took my car over to a friends house and he fixed my brakes for the $60 it cost me in parts. Unfortunately, while he said the mechanics were jerking me around on the brakes hardcore, the steering really is fucked. And he doesn't have the equipment to do that. So I still need to come up with $800 (EDIT: Fuck. Make that $1100) for that. But it's a lot better than $1700. A lot better.


Let's see. What else?

The crappy -
A got a call from a friend and when he asked her about her son she told him she was pregnant again. It just doesn't bother him like it does me and that bothers me. She's the person who always comments on facebook pictures of me with kids by saying "Watch out, babies are contagious" and shit like that. She's really A's friend and I wish he would tell her that we can't have kids so she would stfu.

The fun -

I finally took the mirrors and picture frames I got for a buck and spray painted them glossy orange. (They were gold.) This is after the first coat. I'm making my guest room the most colorful room possible. Now I just need to figure out what I want to put in the little picture frames. Any ideas?

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

There are so many reasons I am excited about President Obama. These reasons have nothing to do with the color of his skin.
But it makes me cry with joy at someday having biracial children who will be able to see a President who looks like them.
That hits me square in the heart.

Beeeeer, where are you?

Oh for fucks sake Indiana! It's bad enough that on Sundays you can't buy beer at the store, but on election day I can't have beer until the polls close?! I had forgotten this stupid arcane rule and was so ready for a drink at 4:30 and there you go crushing my hopes and dreams with your laws.

Ok, seven more minutes and I am in the bar.

Nov. 4

Whew, waking up at 4am is starting to catch up with me. I am not working the polls today, but A is and I needed him to drop me off at work on his way. Charlie and I walked over the *bucks as soon as it opened to get some coffee. Then my boss took me out for coffee again. And lack of sleep plus lots of caffeine is making me all gooey in the brain area.

In case you somehow missed it, today is Election Day. So go vote.

But it's also Kelly's anniversary. She's still mad in love with that man of hers, so go tell her congratulations.

On a sad note, today was Karis and Addison's due date. Today is understandably an unspeakably hard day for Mandy. Go hold her hand.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Fuck Fuck FUCK

Seriously. I love my car. But it is costing way too much this year, the year that I have no fucking money.
My wonderful amazing way too generous boss decided my tires were crap (which they were) and is buying me nice new ones for Christmas. (He's buying them now before I crash and die. He wants me to keep coming to work.)

I took my car in this afternoon top get the tires and asked them to check my brakes too because a couple days ago my brake warning light came on (and then turned off).

I just called to see if my car was ready to be picked up yet and apparently my front brakes are shot and I need new rotors, something about my suspension is about to fall off or something, and I'm leaking steering fluid like mad. The guy was really nice about and told me he hated to ruin my Friday like this.

A isn't getting called back about jobs. A couple have said they might not be filling the positions after all, but most have just ignored him.

Happy fucking Halloween. I hope y'all get the treats, because I am apparently getting the tricks.

EDIT: So the estimate is about $1700. And the mechanic is a nice guy who ushers at church with my dad, so I know he wasn't bullshitting me. I pathetically started crying right there at the counter with the two mechanics trying to console me that it was just a car, not the end of the world. I drove home on fancy new tires in a car that is about to either lose braking power or steering. I'm going to see if my neighbor who runs an illegal garage out in the alley can do some of it cheaper.
And then after I get home and grab a beer to cry into, I see that I have a letter from Kara and a package from JJ. (Filled with chocolate, a cool magazine, lip balm, tea, and presents for Charlie! The chocolate saved me from eating all the trick or treaters chocolate, so I'm sure if they knew what she did they would be grateful as well.) It was exactly what I needed to calm down and stop hyperventilating. I will survive. It's just a car.
I can't thank all my blog friends enough. What would I have done this past year without you guys?

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Meme-ing it up again

Nancy's post reminded me that I never did this meme that somebody (I can't remember who now because I stink) tagged me for. But I am avoiding paperwork while I wait for A to finish making lasagna, so I figured I'd do it.
I'm supposed to post the fourth picture from the fourth folder on my computer.


Drumroll please...






Um, not sure why I have a picture of my messy side desk. But there you go.

Sweet Mother of Stirrup Queens, we're almost there!

Look people! Look to the right!
U.T.E.R.U.S. is SO almost there. If we sold everything left on the ebay and etsy, we would totally make more than enough. Or if a few of us clicked the direct donation link.

I'm just saying. Don't you want to be the hero who pushes it over the edge and has me send you the georgeous print that OhEmily did? (Plus, I'd put my return address on it and then you could send me fan mail.)
Dream that dream and go buy something.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Keeping warm

I've always been cheap. Of course I like to think of it as frugal. I can't help it. It's the way I was raised.

Among our weekly chores, we all got a thick pile of coupons to cut and sort.

Clothes were found at thrift stores and garage sales.

And of course, when it got cold out, instead of reaching for the thermostat, my mom handed us sweaters.

So when it got cold this week, I looked deep into A's warm brown eyes, slid my hand into his, leaned in...and told him to put on a goddamn sweater.

Of course, I forgot that A has the unfortunate tendency to not only buy in to my frugality once I've had my rant, but to sometimes take it even further. So I woke up this morning with twelve blankets, two cats, a dog, a husband, and a cold nose. Because despite the freeze warnings last night and my flashbacks to Laura Ingalls Wilder writing about not sleeping if it was too cold because you MIGHT NOT WAKE UP, A decided we could totally make it another night without turning on the heat.

Look, I know it hasn't even gotten below 29 F yet and I do not live in Duluth MN like my mother did and lord knows she had to shovel snow higher than her car and still go to school to teach the ungrateful children and somewhere in the countryside my dad was carrying his two sisters on his back through the snow barefoot uphill both ways across broken glass and ice and blahblahfuckityblahblah....

But I have been cold. I reached out to the themostat before A stopped me about a second before I flipped the switch. I am wearing two pairs of socks, leggings under my pants, and two hoodies over my shirt. But my little toe was still going numb, so with no hope of sneaking the furnace on, I decided to warm it up the frugal way...

with hot apple cider!


And then I made it better with some caramel syrup... (50 cents at a garage sale)
And really better with some vodka I got for my birthday...

(Oh! Frugal alert - Organic cream for 95 cents!)
Which turns into whipped cream...
Which goes onto the cider with a dash of cinnamon...

And suddenly I have warm feeling about being cheap again.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Show and Tell: Pomegranate

I've known amazing people. Maria Nichols was head and shoulders above them all.

The best woman I have ever known wasn't much to look at: A tiny hunched over figure with gray frazzled hair and an arm swollen from cancer treatments. She wore thick polyester clothes and had a long face that drooped with age and experience. Her feet would be stuffed into colorless orthopedic shoes.

She wore glasses and when she wanted to make a point to the middle schoolers she taught she would stare through her glasses' thick lenses and slowly, deliberately, push them up her nose with her gnarled middle finger.

She wove amazing tales and prodded students to think and cursed us out in foreign languages while appealing to her sister, Minerva, the goddess, to knock some sense into us.

She also introduced me to pomegranates.

Mrs. Nichols, my mama Maria, taught my social studies class in 7th and 8th grade. (I don't think it was called social studies though. It was the gifted/talented class and I think they called it something else. D, if you're reading, do you remember?) She also let a handful of us eat lunch in her room. We were the social outcasts who would clutch our lunch trays looking for traps to avoid, but once she opened her room to us, it was like our own personal Lyceum. We would eat and talk and listen. And one day we were talking about Persephone, who was tricked into eating pomegranate seeds by Hades to make her return to the underworld. One of us mentioned we had never had a pomegranate, so Mama Maria brought one in sometime shortly after.

I thought of her earlier today as I cracked open a pomegranate. Whenever I see the pomegranate thread the infertility community uses as a symbol, I can't help but think that in another time she would have been a great and wild blogger.She was a true teacher - she didn't just recite facts and expect them recited back. She told stories and made us live them and make connections between them. She wanted us to experience life, not just know some version of it from a book.

My Mama Maria passed away when I was in my senior year of college. Everyone who knew her felt the loss deeply. She made so many feel as though they were her prize student, her special child.

She never said goodbye, she would just send me off with an Irish blessing, as she called me her Irish Colleen.

May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind always be at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
and rains fall soft upon your fields.
And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of His hand.


Only after "May the wind always be at your back" she would mutter "and not of ye'."

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Tagged all over

I am just getting tagged all over the place! So this will be my catchup post for all the memes. So if you want to know random things about me, here ya go:

Endobaby tagged me for this:
1. Do you have the same friends since childhood?
Not from when I was young, but my two best friends have been my best friends since middle school. L moved to Indy from NYC to live with her dad in 7th grade and we recognized kindred spirits in each other. D went to middle school with us. He was on the quiz team and in the gifted classes and did Math Counts and all the other nerdy things with us, but he didn't really become a *friend* until the summer before high school. He went to a different high school, but we would spend hours talking on the phone. D's seen me through a lot. Both L&D are still the best friends a girl could have.
2. What do you value most about your friends?
With D- Being able to sit in silence. My mom never understood the way D and I could be on the phone for hours and have these big periods of silence. I guess it is kind of weird. But if you can be with somebody and be comfortable just *being*, I think that says a lot.

So many of my friends fulfill different needs, but I think all my close friends share the ability to just be completely bizarre together. We are so weird sometimes.

3. Are your friends sounding boards?
Yes, and you, my blog friends, are some of the best.

4. What is your favorite activity to share with friends?
Sitting and talking. Or just sitting and being silent because you already know everything the other person thinks and you can just enjoy having their presence.
I like going out to eat or karaoke or shopping, but it all comes back to just hanging out.

Kate, and Anna and I believe somebody else tagged me for this (we are such an incestuous bunch, aren't we):
1. Where is your cell phone? table
2. Where is your significant other? kitchen
3. Your hair color? depends
4. Your mother? me
5. Your father? gruff
6. Your favorite thing? sleep
7. Your dream last night? blank
8. Your dream/goal? happiness
9. The room you’re in? cold
10. Your hobby? incomplete
11. Your fear? emptiness
12. Where do you want to be in six years? Jamaica
13. Where were you last night? home
14. What you’re not? tidy
15. One of your wish list items? blanket
16. Where you grew up? suburbia
17. The last thing you did? cuddle
18. What are you wearing? sweatshirt
19. Your T.V.? fancy
20. Your pet? sleepy
21. Your computer? powerbook
22. Your mood? indecisive
23. Missing someone? david
24. Your car? sassy
25. Something you’re not wearing? shoes
26. Favorite store? thrift
27. Your Summer? gone
28. Love someone? Al
29. Your favorite color? orange
30. When is the last time you laughed? always
31. Last time you cried? days?

And my new ICLW friend Caba has tagged me for this:

The rules are:
1. To link the tagger and provide the rules on your blog.
2. Share 7 facts about yourself.
3. Tag 7 people at the end of your post by leaving names as well as links to their blogs.
4. Let them know they've been tagged by leaving a comment on their blogs.
(Ok, I may have said some of these before, but my memory stinks.)

1. I chew on my lower lip when I am worried. It drives A nuts.
2. In college every year I did my taxes with my friend Mel while sitting in the same booth in an Irish Bar.
3. I would not admit this to many real life friends, but I am voting for a Republ*can this year. (No, not for president! Heh. As if.) Please do not spread this fact around as it would damage my liberal nutjob image.
4. My favorite fair food is a corndog. I love a good corndog with mustard. Oh how I love them.
5. We have not yet turned on our heat despite it being 45 degrees out right now. And our insulation is crap, so believe me, I can feel it.
6. In middle school I would go through food phases, where I would eat the same thing as a snack every day after school for weeks. The weirdest one was my eggnog phase. I made real eggnog everyday for two weeks. Thinking about all those raw eggs now is gross.
7. I do not wear my engagement ring. I used to wear it, but I am always bumping into things, so I would hit it and snag it, so I put it up.

I would tag people, but I am lazy after doing all those.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Pretend you didn't read that last post.

Uh, I am deleting last night's drunken blog entry.

Yeah. Little hungover this morning. Already sent the "sorry I'm an asshole" email to the nice guy that drove me home despite me being obnoxious. He wrote back saying it was fine and he was amused by the screechy and profanity filled gun control lecture I gave to one of the other guys.

Heh.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Still here, still bitching and moaning

Whew. I just went through google reader and tried to comment on everyone's most recent post and cleared off the old ones. If I missed somebody or something incredibly important, I'm sorry.

So let's see..what's happening here...

Last week my sister flew in for an evening on her way elsewhere. Mel came over and had dinner with us (A made Mac and Cheese. Mmmm.) Mel's having a rough time, so please send good vibes her way. Even though we were both wallowing, it was good to wallow together. (I did get to give baby Simone some burp cloths though! With fire trucks on them! She will be quite a badass when she's born.)

Saturday I got up and had an abbreviated garage sale junket with my mom. It may have been the last one until spring, but it did yield a real Coach purse for $8. (They had marked $10, but as my mother taught me, *always* ask if they will take less, especially if they are having bloody Marys.) It was a nice cap off to the season. (I need to get some cleaner as it has a few scuffs.)
Randomly, I also found a wedding picture belonging to a fellow blogger, Bon. Stupidly, I didn't buy it. (More in a moment.)
I had to go to a board meeting for work in the afternoon, which was boringish, but it only ran an hour and a half over (believe me, with my boss, that's *amazing*) and then we had our annual fall dinner with the board, which is always nice. I truly like all of the guys and gal I work with and they are the best people with which to eat and drink. And drink. And drink.
(At the age of twenty seven, I can't even BEGIN to keep up with these forty somethings. Staying out drinking until 4am? At 11pm, I am usually ready to climb into bed. ) We had a super nice dinner that yielded leftover fillet mignon and chocolate cake, along with a nice wine buzz. We went across the street to keep drinking, but I gave in quickly and had A take me home.

Sunday after I eventually woke up from my slightly drunken stupor, I went and met up with Bon for coffee and a walk. We did not solve the mystery of her wedding picture being at a rummage sale, but it was nice to finally meet her in person.
**********

What other random things have I been up to?

Last week (or the week before? My time has been all jumbled) I finally put together all my Ikea bookcases. As I was doing that, I listened to CDs that the amazing Kate sent me - one to wallow to and one to dance to. A has decided that based on her musical taste, Kate is indeed a good friend to have.
Of course, something had to go wrong - I had been so proud of myself for having just the perfectly sized space for three and a half bookshelves. Except of course that I had measured from the wall and not the floor. We have huge baseboards. I don't want to cut into our antique baseboards for some Ikea shelves, so I just put the little one at an angle. It still looks pretty good.

Before:


After(ish - I still need to get all our books up there and organize them):You can get a sense of how big they actually are from the chair - it's not a small chair. I painted the walls a carmel color and got some baskets at a garage sale and put this cool 1895 Art Nouveau wrapping paper on my magazine holders:

I've also been trying to find a chair to put in there and I found this midcentury Plycraft Mr. Chair on Cra*gslist, but now it is sitting in my living room and is so comfortable that it might not make it any further:


And now your moment of cuteness:


Also, the Etsy and Ebay U.T.E.R.U.S. things are going well! I have a couple things to put up on etsy tomorrow morning, so look over there tomorrow to see what fantasticness you can buy.

Oh, and thank you all for offering virtual drinks. If they were all real, I would worry about my liver.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Shake your crafty money makers!

What's that you say? Did Io steal the below directly from Lollipop Goldstein? Why yes I did.
****************************************************************
Um, some pretty freakin' amazing things happening with U.T.E.R.U.S. When we last left off, we had $837.12 in hand. And then an anonymous donor issued a challenge. She will match bloggers dollar for dollar over any amount made through the eBay auction, the etsy site, or direct donations. In other words, if you donate some pottery to the etsy store and it sells for $40, it actually sold for $80 because this person is matching you dollar for dollar.

Wait.

You really need to read this new again.

Whatever you donate--either itemwise or as a direct donation--will be matched dollar for dollar. If you give $5, it's really like giving $10. Why is she doing this? Because she wants to kick you into action. She wants you to remember a time someone did something for you and she wants you to pay it forward.

So what can you do to get into the giving spirit? There are numerous ways to get involved in this--one does not even require you to give anything at all beyond your time...
  • Donate directly via the paypal link on the right sidebar (it's midway down the sidebar with the U.T.E.R.U.S. updates).
  • Donate an item to our eBay auctions or bid on an item yourself.
  • Donate an item to our etsy store or buy one yourself.
  • Sell ad space on your blog and donate the ad revenue to U.T.E.R.U.S.
  • Donate a skill--web design, etc--or run a garage sale at home (and then donate the money)
  • Do this really cool thing that Lori found and donate the money you make from it. Remember--$10 is really $20 in donation form.
  • Tell people about U.T.E.R.U.S. and ask them to get involved too.
*********************************************************************

OK, Io here again. We have sold three of the six things in the etsy store, so we need to get more stock! If you knit, donate a blanket or some mittens or something! (If you *thought* you wanted to knit so you have nice yarn that you never used, you're me. Donate the yarn.) If you an an artist, consider how good it would feel to have somebody buy your work and hang it on their wall! (Kate sold a picture!) If you make jewelry or stuffed bears or purses or anything craftylike, please consider donating some of your work. And if you don't, come buy it!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Still alive

I'm not even really sure what to say.

I go back and forth between feeling like I am being a melodramatic queen to feeling like no, this really does call for some heavy sighing and weeping and hand wringing and whatever else I can pick up from starchy Victorian novels. (And I generally feel like an asshole for ignoring all of your sweet comments and loving emails. And I'm afraid when googlereader hit 200, I hit clear, so I'm sorry for not commenting on all your happy/sad/random news. I love and appreciate all of you SO MUCH, but every time I saw somebody had left a message I burst into tears and had to close my laptop.)

A year ago we had just found out why two years of ttc hadn't been working. And even with all my bitching and moaning about how we couldn't afford IVF, I knew that A was graduating in December, that he'd get a job making more money than he did teaching, that we wouldn't have the extra expenses of l@w school. I figured that we would be able to save and it would be a wait, but we'd make it within a year. Easy.
And then A flunked the b@r.
Man, did that suck. We've been living off of my salary (love my job, but I am paid next to nothing) and our savings. A studied again and decided not to get a job on the (oh, it seems SO. FUCKING.STUPID. now) belief that he would pass in October and get a l@w job. So it would be ridiculous to get some other job in the meantime! Just hang out a while longer and do stuff around the house! And then we'd get back on track and maybe we could do IVF sometime in the spring!
And now he's flunked again.
And the economy is in the shitter.

Even if we could get pregnant with that good old-fashioned s-e-x, now would not be the time.

Everything is kind of jumbly.
A is looking at jobs pretty much everywhere. If he gets a job somewhere else, he might move while I stayed here. It's hard to figure out what he can do though - there's a lot of stuff that he would be great at, but his backround is all over the place, so actually getting hired? Might be hard.

He could cook - he has a culinary degree and was a professional chef. But that was eight or nine years ago, so getting hired to a decent kitchen might be hard.
He could teach - he'd been teaching C*mmunications at the university level for seven years until he quit last winter to study for the b@r. But it's the middle of the school year. So he *might* be able to get another job making shit money *next* fall, but that doesn't do us much good.
He has a law degree...but, well, you know how that goes.

We're both depressed and touchy and nervous. A feels like he has let me down and is embarrassed. I hate having to tell people. And I'm sure they hate figuring out what to say.
He's not stupid and he certainly studied (I am hitting the next asshole who tries to explain how they studied and maybe he should try their method that SERIOUSLYpeople heTOOKthefuckingclassesandDIDallthesameshitYOUdid, so shutthefuckup.) (Oh, and please don't tell me that JFK Jr had to take the bar two or three times or whatever. I don't think he was living in the ghetto while he was waiting to take it again. And saying that doesn't make it seem any better that A doesn't have a job. Plus JFK Jr. died. Just sayin'.)

There is no way that we will be having a child in the next year.

Oh, and last Monday? Heard from the clinic about donating. Fucking perfect.
While it would be nice to have the money and I still would like to help, right now I am unhealthy and stressed and probably mentally unstable.Extra hormones right now might push me over the edge. So I am withdrawing my profile. Boo.

And other shitty things - I fucked up at work last week, nothing huge, but I hate fucking up. One of my best friends here and his husband are moving out of state. My friend R (who is *that person* who was in the process of adopting, but got pregnant) is pregnant again. She's kicks ass and I am happy for her, but talking to her last week and the combination of hearing her say she was sorry about the b@r, tell me that she's pregnant and wants a girl, and that I'd be pregnant *soon* just about killed me.

Aw fuck, here I go veering off into melodrama.

***
There is good stuff too:

I put up my Ikea shelves and while they don't quite fit right (I measured from the wall and forgot about the baseboard, so the skinny shelf is at an angle. Doh.) they look really good in my freshly painted office/library.

My sister is coming into town tomorrow, so that makes me super fucking happy. She will drink wine with me and trade out a couple of books and lecture me about what I should do, but in a way that makes me feel inspired, not shamed.

Um. Cinnamon ice cream. That's good.


OH! And hot damn, UTERUS is good! Go look at the ebay stuff (wanna win my hamburger phone?) and also look at our etsy store, which I am running. uterus.etsy.com
And please consider donating items or money.

***
So tell me people, what did I miss in your lives last week?

Thursday, October 2, 2008

I was going to liveblog

I was planning on liveblogging the VP debate, but I can't because I just keep breaking out in laughter. Palin is ridunkulous.


Ten hours.

Ack

Less than 22 hours until we hear about the bar and I simply can't concentrate on anything. I'm crawling out of my skin.
I have work sitting in front of me, but it's not exactly holding my attention.
Quick, somebody distract me.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Oh my god we're back again...

You know what is awesome and amazing?
(Well, besides me. I am pretty awesome and amazing...according to my mother. And ok, she was talking about how "amazing" it was that I had no shame in bringing a diaper out to the living room while we had company when I was four and putting it on myself in preparation for bedtime. Geesh Mom, did you have to remind me, as though I don't have enough embarrassing things from my childhood that are forever burned into my memory, that I was not only an exhibitionist but also a bedwetter until I was five? Ack!)
Um. Sorry. That was not awesome.
AS I WAS SAYING.
You know whats awesome and amazing?

This community is.

I was reading Calliope's blog this morning and she mentioned a year ago making pumpkin ravioli.
That was one of the first IF blog posts I remember reading. After almost two years of trying, we finally had an answer to why there was no screaming baby in our house and I was desperately searching the Internets for more. When I found blogs I became obsessed. I sucked in IF blogs like they were air and I was drowning. There were people who felt like I did, who had been where I was, who had gone where I wanted to.

So a month later I started my blog.
And I read people's blogs and commented.
And people read my blog and commented.
And I got a package from Anna and from Kate.
And I sent a package to Jen.
And I met shinejil and Kelly.
And I got a call from Kara.

It hasn't even been a year, but it seems so much longer.
I have found my home with all of you. People who are so far away - wishingforone in Egypt! Tracy, who's a republican (which ideologically is really, really far away from me)! We're all so much stronger because of each other.

Which brings me back to Calli.
Calliope let us show off what we could do together. What we could accomplish. (OK, yes, it also took Calli's ovaries and uterus and some sperm and doctors and drugs and...ok, but we *helped* is the point.)

Calliope has given up a lot to take care of her grandmother and one of those things is being able to have one of those "paying job" things. After a devastating miscarriage last winter, she didn't have enough money to move forward with an FET. A lot of amazing people came together and created U.T.E.R.U.S.
And partially because of U.T.E.R.U.S., Calli had an opportunity to get the Snork all up in her ute, snuggled in and growing every day.

(Do you guys know where I am going with this? Yeah? Aren't you *excited*? Don't you want to get *involved*?!)

It's time for U.T.E.R.U.S. to spring back into action. You can read about the latest recipients and how you can help over at the incomparable Lollipop Goldstein's place. (You *may* have heard of it...Stirrup Queens ring a bell? Yeah, if I were her I would walk around saying "Don't you know who I *am*?" every five minutes. Which is probably why I am not her.)

So I expect all of you will either:
A) Donate money!
B) Donate stuff for the ebay auction! (I'm sending a hamburger phone from the movie Juno!)
C) Buy something from the ebay auction! (Don't you want my hamburger phone? It has fake sesame seeds on the bun!)
D) Donate something crafty for our etsy store (New addition! And I am running it!)
E) Buy something from the etsy store! (I am putting up beautiful green alpaca wool from Chile. From the 1970s. My mother passed along her "Oh, knitting would be fun, so I'll buy wool while I'm living in this foreign county, but geeze, I don't actually want to knit so I'll just let this wool sit here for thirtyfive years..." gene. And her wool too. She passed that along. And now it could be yours!)
F) Arrange travel stuff for Vee and Max!
G) Donate money!

Whatever you do, don't let this be something that you think "Oh, that might be fun but I don't have much ability to help..." We can do such amazing things for each other. Together.

Please help.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Keeping it together

We are engaging in distraction therapy this week. So I will mention this once and then hopefully not say anything again (because I am so busy doing fun! exciting! things) until Friday, when I erupt with joy.

Bar results come out on Friday.

***

Ok! Moving on.
I survived seeing my friend J on Thursday. Her little girl E slept the whole time and I held her for most of the visit while J ate her dinner.

It's not actually being there that gets me. When I'm with a baby I'm too busy being mesmerized by her tiny hand curling around my finger or that incredibly soft swoop from her forehead to her nose. I'm sad but its tempered with awe of this little life.

It's when I leave and can feel how alone I am in the car, separated from my other travelers, glancing in my rearview window to a backseat that is empty, that it hits me in the gut.

***
This weekend I figured that as long as we're slowly whittling down our IVF savings to pay bills and fun things like that, I might as well spend some more of it. If we're not having IVF any time soon, why not go all out with a great big "fuck it"?

So this weekend I made the pilgrimage to Ikea with my friend E and another friend of hers. (E is temporarily rocking a Durango. We went to Cincinnati, which is less than two hours away. The three of us spent most of the day walking through the maze of cheap bright home scenes until one person would wander off, distracted by shiny Swedish doodads, and had to be hunted down by the other two. (Um, that was mostly me being distracted and wandering away...I can't blame the dad who had his kid on a leash in there. I probably should have been on one.)

Ikea is fantastic, but it does have drawbacks: I thought maybe it was just me, but E's friend J also pointed out that she had never seen so many pregnant women in one place before. They were freaking everywhere.

I managed to get out without picking up too many random objects, but I did drop a huge chunk of change on four bookshelves with height extenders so they are almost eight feet tall.

Of course, right now they look like this:


(Take away the sleepy cat and pretend you don't see my dining room floor that still has not been refinished.)


And the space they are going into in the office? Currently looks likes this:

Er. Yeah. That is all part of the distraction plan - A will be working on cleaning that space out and assembling bookshelves this week.

And now, because A took a picture when I wasn't here and it transfered over from my camera and my furbabies are just so darn cute, I give you KD and Thomas:

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Charlie done a bad bad thing

A and I actually went out last night. On a Wednesday! We left the house at 9:30pm!

Madness.

My dear friends M&B are moving away. They were my first friends when I moved back here after college. A was working and going to law school at night and traveling for work on the weekends, so I practically lived at their house. B and I worked together starting his baby, the f*lm fest*val.

B recently got his dream job, but it's all the way in Tennessee. He's already moved down there while M stays here for a little while and tries to sell his business. (Anyone want to buy a psychotherapy practice? You could come live here and be my bestest friend!) Everyone is happy for B of course, but we're so sad to lose them. Everyone has been sobbing goodbye on their porch. I suspect a few people might be hatching plans to kidnap them so they can't leave.

Last night M was lonely so A and I met him at the bar down the block and sat and talked for a while. It was good, but sad.

We stayed a couple hours then went back home to find out that I am a terrible mother. I had left things where Charlie could get to them. Charlie had ripped open a package I was planing to mail today to a certain birthday girl and opened the chocolate bar and eaten the chocolate. Which kills dogs.

He jumped up to greet us and you could smell it on his breath.

A kept asking me what I was thinking and I kept freaking out. Finally, I figured out that the amount he had eaten was less than a sixth of what he would need to eat for it to be toxic, but all night I kept waking up and checking on him.

He's totally fine - you'd never know he had eaten anything. He went right to bed, didn't puke, bright eyed and bushy tailed today, playing with Betty here at work.

Little stinker's breath still smells like chocolate.

***
Tonight I'm making meatloaf and mashed potatoes to bring for my friend J, who just had her daughter a week ago. She broke her tailbone giving birth and I know she's overwhelmed, so I offered. She is a friend and I do want to help her out and meet her new daughter, even if it is somewhat bittersweet for me.
When I talked to her on the phone she told me how amazing it is being a mother.

Wish me luck at not falling apart.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Now I remember why I hate the Ghetto Kroger

We went back and got a few more frozen deals from the Ghetto Kroger the other day. (Mmmm..Amy's Chili with cornbread! More Julie's Ice Cream, in my favorite flavor, blackberry! Tofurky stuffed with cranberry dressing! Ok, the last one was kind of gross.)

So tonight I went back because we were out of a couple important staples - yogurt, sugar, olive oil. Of course, I got a few extra scores in my special markdown area. Organic corn meal half off! Mango salsa half off! Half and half half off (say that five times fast)!
I even managed to get some nice tampons half off ! Of course, one of the many beautiful things about being infertile is that I know I will need tampons next month. And the month after that. That's right - I can buy ahead! And in bulk! Take that, fertiles! Booyah!

Despite my tampon score (Oh! And if any Indy area ladies are looking for clearblue easy fertility stick things, they are half price in the bins, right next to the bulgar wheat and the Nascar M&Ms.) I was reminded of why infertility also sucks.

Crack whores. They love this Kroger. (And no, I'm afraid this type of woman is not a related species of Infertile Whore.)

Ok, maybe she wasn't a crack whore. I don't *specifically* remember seeing her standing out on tenth street. But she gave off the same vibe.
This zoned out woman managed to follow me approximately 1.7 miles through the store, all the while ignoring her crying son except to occasionally snap at him to shut up. Which, in my experience, usually doesn't work with two year olds.

I'm not really one for snatching babies, but I wouldn't mind smacking some mothers.

Edit: I forgot to mention the pregnant woman smoking in the parking lot. Classy.

Monday, September 22, 2008

The USA needs to play catch up

How fantastic is this:

Australian lesbians can now have both partners recognized on their children's birth certificates.

Congrats to my Australian friends. I know there is still a long way to go, but it's better than what we have here.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Show and tell: Dead Sexy Io

Thank you all for being happy my mom doesn't have cancer - we're pretty happy about it too.
Since she's ok, she and my dad have gone to Illinois for my dad's fiftieth high school reunion. I think there were about eight people in his graduating class. (By the way would-be-robbers reading this: Not only do my parents have an alarm they have the nosiest neighbor in the world. Don't bother breaking in - Mr. Jones might be ninety-four, but he will fuck you up.)

Of course, this means that my momudee wasn't around to garage sale. So I had my own garage sale. Which seemed like a good idea. At 5pm last night.

Somehow I managed to get my sale thrown together by 8am. I strongly strongly subscribe to the just-get-it-gone philosophy, so everything was a quarter. One guy bought four dining chairs, a rocking chair, a cat scratched club chair, a computer monitor, and a whole bunch of little doodads, and somehow put them ON TOP OF his little car which was already filled up with a large wife and other assorted items.
Just as I was about to put everything up to take to G**dwill, two people showed up and I sold them everything I had left (except my books) for a couple bucks. One of them just couldn't stop grinning. He was really excited about getting things: a purse for his mom, VHS tapes for himself, candles for his sister. He said I made his day, which totally made my day.

So now I just have a bookshelf and about eighty books sitting on my porch. My BIL claims he is going to come take them away but if anyone is in the area and wants a whole bunch of trashy paperbacks, you can have 'em.

When I decided last night that I was having a garage sale I realized that I would need some card tables so I went and borrowed some from my parents. While I was grabbing them from my dad's office I noticed a pile of pictures and thought I would share one with you to prove that, yes, I *have* always been this dead sexy.

You know you wish you had those glasses.


Edit: Heh. And if you don't agree with me, meet my 14 year old self. She will kick your ass and set you straight.






I was such a teenager.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

The good, the bad, that's all.

The good: My mom does not have cancer.

The bad that should be good except I'm a motherfuckin infertile: Remember my friend J? She of the drugs and drinking and accidental knockedupedness?
Yeah, just got a text from her letting me know that she's giving birth to her daughter tonight.

That's all: Gotta go eat some Tofutti.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Reason to love the ghetto

You know, living in the ghetto has a lot of drawbacks. Some of my neighbors are trashy (but the crack dealer is gone!), our air conditioner was torn apart for copper (but it was old anyways and insurance helped us buy another nice new one!), and there are occasionally dead bodies found in trash cans (ok, no nice way to spin that other than saying it wasn't *our* trash can).

But one of the things that would at first glance seem to be a drawback has actually proven to be awesome.

The Ghetto Kroger.
(For those of you who are unaware, Kroger is a grocery store 'round these here parts.)

Disclaimer: You know that person who brags about how cheap they are? Yeah, I am that person. I can't help it - I was raised that way. So skip this if you find it annoying. Because that is the whole post: Me, bragging about grocery shopping scores.

Our Ghetto Kroger is a step up from the one we used to go to. When we lived in downtown proper, the choices were either ghetto Ghetto Kroger or high-ass-prices grocery store. There was also a ghetto Kroger that was so bad nobody I know would go in it.

Ours is a bit better - it's a lot bigger, has a produce section that is doesn't *completely* make me wonder about the racist/classist practices of the corporation, and has an organic section.

Don't get me wrong - it's still ghetto. The produce is not as bountiful or fresh as stores in my parents neighborhood. There is no olive bar. The store seems to have a policy of only opening two lanes, even if there are twenty people in line, which there always are. Despite our pleadings, they don't carry the New York Times like the Kroger down the road closer to suburbia(we used to get it delivered, but it turns out nobody would deliver to the ghetto and we had to cancel because we never got our paper.)

And I can't completely blame them for some of these things. Hell, I know I wouldn't use the olive bar, so I know that the crack whores probably aren't bemoaning the lack of one.
But here (finally, I know, where the hell is my point?) is my point. Because people are poor around here, they don't buy some things very often. Therefore they have manager's special stickers all the time to get rid of things that people aren't buying. I have become an expert at spotting the orange stickers from a distance. The organic/natural foods area is one of the best places for these. And tonight I scored.
The past couple of weeks, the organic section has been getting spare. They haven't been restocking. Which had me worried that perhaps they were going to do away with Amy's Pizza and Kashi.
It turns out they were getting new products, so tonight all the leftover stuff was marked way off and stuck in a freezer bin for me to find and get way too excited about.

My freezer had been close to empty - tonight, I filled up my freezer. There was a teeny bit of room left after I put everything away so I went back to buy more.
This is a shot of one small section of the freezer to give you an idea:


That Amy's Cornmeal crust with organic fire roasted vegetable pizza that is normally seven bucks? $1.25. That Julie's Organic Ice cream that's normally $4.29? Fifty six cents. That Tofuti fake ice cream crap? Actually quite tasty. And seventy cents. And I got like four huge bags of edamame for seventy five cents apiece.

I love the ghetto.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Blahs

My last post asked what you do to get out of a funk and it turns out one of the best things is having lots of awesome online friends comment on a post about happy things. (I puffy heart all of you more than you can know.) I also read a trashy novel and gave Charlie lots of kisses. And watched the opening of SNL. Tiny Fey worked wonders for my mood.

(Going to the birthday party of a one year old and seeing an incredibly pregnant lady who kept touching her belly? Shockingly, this did not make me fart rainbows and butterflies. The cake was good though.)

I'm still feeling a little blah, though I'm sure it has a lot to do with the cold gray weather and the tickers across the bottom of CNN announcing the latest stock market numbers and the fact that we have less than three weeks until we know about the bar and I think the anxiety is slowly and steadily increasing. (Plus there's that whole getting a j.o.b. thing in this economy even if he does pass.)
My mom just went in to have a biopsy on her jaw because there is something on her jaw and they weren't sure if it was just an infection or... She's supposed to find out Thursday so I'm trying not to think about it - no sense it worrying until we know.

----
I think I'm with Emily - I feel like I need to apologize for not being able to shake the funk. I know it's ridiculous, but I feel stupid for being such a cranker.

Blah blah blah.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Advice

I'm having another feeling-sorry-for-myself day. Monthly hormonal demons have possessed me, so I know it will pass, but in the meantime...

When you feel like everything is crap, what is your favorite thing to make you feel better?
(Other than shopping, eating, or running. I'm poor, fat and lazy right now so those are not going to work.)

Thursday, September 11, 2008

I remember

I feel fuzzy today. It's a gray quiet day outside and online I've been reading 9/11 postings that bring me back over and over again.

It was so quiet.

I had walked onto campus and was sitting and reading on the steps of the speech team office, which was housed in the grad student wing of old barrack-style dorms that had been converted into the Communication Department's building.
It was beautiful out.

Matt, the grad student who had the office next to ours, walked up and told me. I went upstairs and reloaded CNN.com over and over, until the towers collapsed.

I went back downstairs and sat on the steps. I didn't know what to do.
My coach walked up and I said "Did you hear?"
I suppose I will always be a part of his memory of that day.

We sat and listened to the radio. For weeks, everything I heard seemed like it had the same scratchy static white noise wrapped around it.

I tried calling my aunt who worked near the towers, my sister who drove past the Pentagon every day. I tried calling my best friend.

I don't remember when I finally got a hold of everyone or what we said, except that my sister had seen the smoke, had just left her house. That everyone was alive.

The next weeks were so quiet. Fighter planes zipped over our heads and the world hung awkwardly off its axis. My friend M and I sat and watched Bill O'Reilly because she was writing about him and he started talking about Bloomington, Indiana, "that hotbed of terrorism."

Strangely, and a bit sadly, it was a return to at least a small part of normalcy, where we yelled at conservative talking heads instead of just crying.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Ker-pow

Thanks for putting up with my political rambling as of late - I know it's probably annoying for some people since it has nothing to do with IF and it can be divisive. But I had to let out some of my rage. I find if I don't let it out, if I internalize, that I just feel worse.
I came home today with a bad headache. I shared my opinion on something (I know, shocking) and it was apparently broadcast and I got a call from a chief who was kind of an asshole in telling me he thought I was wrong. And I can't really tell this chief that he's a damn idiot. So I apologized and shut my mouth. Messed up my head.

***

As usual my mom and I went garage sailing last weekend. It's so sad. We go nuts for baby stuff. There is always somebody we can justify buying it for. Clearly the brand new StrideRite saddle shoes for a dollar should go to somebody! So I quickly try to figure out who might have a little girl who is going to be a size 7. Meanwhile, my mom is trying to single-handedly clothe her handyman's son and my cousin's foster daughter. (Sad story - my cousin is trying to adopt her and her younger brother and her first mom came back to the state to fight for her, NOT because she wants her, but "so [her] kids know [she] didn't just give them up." WTF)

I always find a few things that I don't know if anyone would need them. So if anyone wants a brand new graco pack n play sheet, I got one for a quarter and don't have anyone who needs it.

I have so much stuff for other people that I collect that I almost worry for when I finally have my own kid - will buying these things for other people's kids now be enough to let off the pressure? Or will this be like my headaches and when I finally get a kid my mom and I will finally go so nuts that we'll drown them in our garage sale treasures?

Friday, September 5, 2008

Soft Core Politics: She's a mahhhhthur!

OK, if you read my blog regularly, you might have picked up that I am not a fan of McCain-Palin.*
Despite my political beliefs, I really don't mean the following post to be a gripe about any particular party or person, though it's possible some of my preference might be evident. It's more of an observation about politics in general. And, I suppose, life in general.

Of all the things that bother me about Palin, one thing has been bugging me: The fact that she's a mother. OK, not really that she is a mother. I think it's great that she's a mother. (Really. However any of us want to judge or applaud her choices, I 'm sure her kids love her and she loves them.) What I have an issue with is that during the speaking breaks (or when they decided that the speaker wasn't important enough to stay with thankgodforCspanwheretheymostlyshoweverything...) at the RNC, when they interviewed people here is what I heard:

"I think she's great. The fact that she's a mom..."

The first word of the video to introduce her: Mother.

The headline to a story about her: Sarah Palin: Mother of five...

Obviously, a lot of this identification as "mother" comes from her own telling of her story. But surely this woman, as much as I don't think she should be vice-president, could be identified for other things? What if Sarah Palin didn't have any children? What would the narrative be? Would she ever have even gotten elected as Mayor if she didn't have the PTA?
Sexism of course makes this more of an issue for her - we might still be discussing this if she were a man, but not as much and more of the glory and more of the sniping would be directed towards the female spouse. (And the PTA thing - I know that sounded sexist, but I am trying to view it as people would view her - as somebody with no kids, not as somebody without drive or ideas - does that make sense? I hope so.)

But seriously, are women with children that much BETTER than those of us without? This idea of "mother" is put on such a pedestal. That being "mother" makes you wiser, more patient, more caring. It's the subtle condescension I hear from friends who tell me I'll understand when I am a mother.

I mean really? What the fuck is that? I can accept that maybe I can't completely know the kind of love that comes with being a mother because I can feel the absence of that love. But patience? Wisdom? Generosity? The ability to potty train? Bullshit. I was a live in nanny for years to the extent I really was part of the family. I have "done" the age three with six different boys. I *know* potty training, people. (And because of all that potty training, I *really* know patience.)

And it's not just mother. Let's say the Obamas didn't have children. I don't think Obama would be on the ticket. Not that he makes a big deal out of his kids. He mentions them certainly, and they were used as part of the pageantry at the DNC, just as all candidates parade their families, but they're not a central part of whatever narrative most of us assign him. (Granted, this is due in part to being a man - once again with the sexism.) But even then, no kids and what happens?

Barack losses his ability for compassion. Michelle becomes nothing more than a cold career woman. How can they care about the future if they have nobody to create a future for?

America does not trust people without children who are running for office. (We *really* don't trust people who are single without kids who are running for public office.) Obviously, there are exceptions to this rule, but I do believe they are few and far between.

Did anyone really think Charlie Crist stood a chance being picked as McCain's running mate? Here's what I know about him: He's really tan, he's a Republican, he's a single man with no kids. (Yes, I also know he's now engaged. And maybe a couple other things. But those are the first three things that come to mind.)

I think his status as a single man with no kids ruled him out as a choice - it makes him a playboy, selfish, childish himself. Possibly gay. Poor guy. Other than being a Republican and probably a good candidate for skin cancer, he's probably great and thoughtful and all that jazz. But Americans would never accept somebody who can't haul a family on stage after the speeches.
Hell, I wonder if part of the thought process that went into picking VPs was how many children they could add to the milieu on stage. (And Biden had such a great backstory for his sons. A horribly sad and life changing one, but it plays well in Peoria.)

I think being a parent changes your life, I really do, even if I haven't had a chance at it yet. But I think that even now, dealing with infertility, it's easy to fall back into the idea that it somehow makes you a better person. I think it can. But parenthood is not the only path or even a certain path to all those qualities we like to ascribe to it.

Feel free to share your thoughts. (Kate, I'd love to hear your thoughts on Clinton - I kind of left her for you since I figured you'd have better stuff to say there.) I know this was kind of disjointed and random and maybe I contradicted myself somewhere. It's complicated and there is no definite right or wrong. But it's what I've been thinking about.


*For those of you somehow not aware, I am a flaming liberal: I am pro-choice, for gun control and gay rights. I think if you want to burn a flag, you should be able to do so even if I don't like it. I believe in economic justice and the regulation of industries that could profit from harming people or the earth. I believe that discrimination on the basis of race or religion or sex or a million other things is wrong. I believe most conservatives need to expand their understanding of what discrimination means. I believe that until we have a perfect justice system, the death penalty will be imperfectly used. I believe banning books is a crime and creationism is ridiculous. But if you want to have a book about creationism, I'll let you put it in my library. I won't teach it in my science class though, because it's not science. It's religion. I believe that speaking up about what my government is doing overseas IS patriotic. I believe that letting people die because they don't have health insurance is criminal.
Don't worry my Republican friends - I believe in a lot of other more universal things too: chocolate, puppies, booze, sleep.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

OK, done for now

It's safe, RNC is over, I'm done snarking about politics for a while.

I have been thinking about how on both sides motherhood/parenthood is such a key word. Never would a single and/or childless woman (or man, actually) be able to be considered for President or Vice President.
More on that coming up tomorrow.