Thursday, December 29, 2011

In Which I Complain

Every day I am exhausted.  I wake up (I actually like to say, I get out of bed after laying in it for 8 hrs because I'm not sure if what I did counts as sleeping).  I go to work.  I will take  my "morning nap" which is 30 min. of uncontrollable sleep.  Sometimes it's all I can do to make it into work before I fall asleep, then I just stay in my truck and take a nap.  Sometimes I sleep at work.  The other morning, I woke up, got ready for work, saw that I had 30 min before I had to leave and took a nap.

Every week night I go to bed AT 10:00.  Sometimes I play a video game/read in bed, so I would say I fall asleep at 10:40.  Then I get up between 6 and 6:30.  That's just under 8 hrs.  The other night I went to bed at 9:00 but didn't fall asleep until 11:00 ish. 

 I'm not worrying about things at night either.  My brain just refuses to relax.  I could be thinking about nothing, but my face is all scruntched up, I get these terrible headaches behind my eyes.  That pain has always been there.  It feels like I'm looking up as high as I can with my eyeballs and it hurts the eyeball moving muscles.  I have practiced my whole life to not worry before going to bed...this whole can't sleep happened a lot when I was in high school and younger (for as long as I can remember), but went away entirely in college.  I like to think that when I was in college, I only got 3-4 hrs of sleep anyways, it all sorta just washed out.  I was also very happy in college.  Happier than high school or now.

Then I have the world's most boring dreams.  Recently they have been dreams where I read the words in my mind, liek it's a book, I repeat the words to myself, then I understand but do not see what happens. I just see words in a row.  Only you can't really read in dreams, so I am spending a whole lot of time concentrating on reading and not relaxing and letting the dreams flow.  Sometimes in the morning, I know I'm dreaming, and I open my eyes and realize I've been awake the whole time, and sigh in relief that I don't have to be in the dream any more because it's so long and boring, and chances are, it's the second time I'm dreaming the same boring dream in the same night.

When I don't work, I usually wake up, say goodbye to Josh (he only works on the days I have off), and then take a nap that's actually relaxing for 5-6 hrs when he gets home.  So I sleep about 14 hrs a day/night on the weekends.  My mother told me I should have gotten my Christmas cards out when I was on vacation...what was I doing that whole time? Well, I was sleeping.

With my little energy, I force myself to work at work.  Accomplish something.  It takes all of my energy I have to motivate me to work, so when I get home, I just want to crawl into bed.  Instead I have to find reserves of energy to make me do my work at home.  How do mom's do it?

And that's why you haven't received my Christmas card yet.  I got the litter cleaned before I got those written.  But in my defense, litter stinks more than christmas cards.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Christmas Wii, Not.

I have an opinion about all the wedding ideas on pinterest, but I will keep it to myself.  It isn't pleasant, and maybe I'm wrong.

For all you future brides, I'm probably wrong.

I received an email at work a few weeks ago saying that the Wii with Mario Cart game pack I ordered was being shipped by Amazon.  Now I didn't order a Wii, so I assumed it was Josh and made an effort not to read it.  I thought maybe he used my amazon account on accident to order it.  (That's a lie, he doesn't have his own account).

Anyways, I felt bad knowing what he got me for Christmas, and I deliberated for days about telling him or not.  I read into his every word and conversation.  I finally decided, with the help of a friend, to get him some Wii games to let him know I knew, after I opened the Wii.

There was no Wii.

It was a spam email.

But it did distract me entirely from the idea that I might get a Kindle Fire, which is exactly what I did get!  And it's awesome beyond belief.  I feel like I imagine it would feel like to get a cell phone at age 16 instead of age 21, my third year of college.  It's sort of like I'm close to being the first cool person instead of the lame person who catches up with the older version of the new sweetest thing.

For example:  I get a smart phone, the Droid Eris.  Fast forward 3 months: Angry Birds comes out.  It's a hit.  I couldn't play it until this weekend when I got my Fire b/c the Droid Eris is too old and slow run Angry Birds. 

Here is a list of my favorite Actors:
1.  Bruce Willis

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Ant Update

I'm not sure I'm going to get Christmas cards out this year.  I hope anyone who doesn't get one takes it as a personal offense.  Mostly it's because I'm lazy as hell.  AND I didn't buy Christmas cards.  I went searching for my stash the other night, and it was empty.  I'm also on vacation.  Who wants to do Christmas cards on vacation?  Not this girl.

Our Scotch tape is also too big for our dispenser.  So that's difficult.

I heard from my sister that the ants are just creating an early base for the upcoming take over in the spring.  She votes kill them.  She also hates ants more than most bugs.  I don't know though, those ants may have helped a mushroom grow in the pot and that was awesome.  I do not dislike ants like she does.  It took a lot to motivate me to discover why there were ants all over my couch.  I was fine just living with them.  At least they weren't in the food.

Once, when we lived on Belmont in Nashville, my mom sent me delicious cookies in a bag.  The postman left them on the porch and hundreds of tiny ants got in the box.  Hundreds of them.  Josh brought it in and just left the box on a plastic lid of a tub in the apartment.  I had to bring the whole thing out covered in ants.  We went through each cookie and blew off all of the ants we could find and then ate the cookies.  My mom's cookies are that good.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Potted Plant Habitat and Stupid Water


I had started a different post this morning, but forgot what interesting things I was going to say!  It was all depressing and sad, and today I don't want to be sad and unhappy, so I deleted it.

Here is what I wanted to say:

We have ants in one of my houseplant pots.  It's my favorite cactus style plant that I've been wanting forever.  My mom has one and my plan growing up was to get one when I was an adult too.  Well, last spring, I was finally adult enough to purchase one, pot it, and keep it out of reach of Ackbar.  He loves to bat the leaves off one by one.  And now there is a colony of ants in it.  It grew a mushroom too this fall!  The pot of earth did that is.  So it's my little habitat, not just a cactus plant.  The ants came out when we brought the fire wood in from the porch when they replaced the slider door.  They made a long line from the wood to the pot.  Josh says they came from the pot.  I say they moved from the log to the pot.  How else would I get a tiny colony of ants in a potted plant??  They found the candy cane decorations I put on the mantle too.  There is such a small amount of ants compared to the war we fight against them in the spring time around the rest of the apartment that I am inclined not to mind them there.  Plus, neither of us are going to eat the candy canes, and there are three other jars full of them.

(Look at that sweet rock!)

So the dilemma is do I let them live and be a part of the family or do I try to get rid of them, possibly harming my plant at the same time?  What would you do?  Ants are good for the soil.  By the way, the soil was totally indoor potting plant soil that I bought.  Sigh.  That was the hardest part, paying for dirt.  I have become one of the suckers that paid good money for my parents' manure.  I asked my parents but they would not bring soil from home for me to use.  This is probably smart on their part, it would go a long way to transporting invasive species.  The same reason why they would not bring me firewood either.

Paying for firewood and dirt is all part of why the city is not a good place for me to live.  Plus, I dont' live in a fun part of the city.  I live in a ghetto suburb without sidewalks or parks.  I have to be on constant vigilance when I drive making sure I don't hit homeless guys or teenagers walking around.  It does make things more exciting though.

Do you want to hear a long annoying story?  Yes?  Good.  The other morning, it was raining.  My theory is that when it rains, some of that storm water makes its way into the water system and is filled with Stupid.  People wake up, drink some Stupid water, and then drive to work.  The Stupid is always worse when it rains here you see.  So it's raining.  I'm driving to work.  It's one long road and once you get out of Antioch proper (past the mall) it goes down to one lane.  It's a one lane road all the way to my work, except for 100 feet inbetween two lights where it has two lanes.  It takes me anywhere from 15 to 45 min. to get to work depending on traffic, time of day, if school is in, and if someone pissed off the crossing guard/four way stop traffic director.  I've sat for 15 min trying to go less than a quarter of a mile because of the crossing guard wasn't letting my lane of traffic go.  So there is a long line of traffic on a normal day.  You just drive in a line of 30 cars or so and there is no point of passing anyone b/c all it gets you is spot 15 instead of spot 18 in a line of 30.  You are still going to go the speed of the car in spot 1 no matter what.  On this particular rainy day, the double lanes were merging into one lane.  The two cars in front of me were playing chicken and neither slowed down to let the other in.  Finally the car being the ass in the lane that was ending, slowed down and got behind the car in front of me, then got in the left turn lane and passed three cars on the left through an intersection and got back in line.  See incredibly Stupid and pointless.  Maybe if it wasn't pointless I would be slightly understanding, but it was.  I passed that guy when he finally turned left 10 min. later.  He got no where faster and put a lot of people in danger.

For a delicious cup of healthy coffee, add ovaltine.  It has vitamins and makes your coffee chocolatey. 

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Delicious Delicious Soup

Josh and I have been feeling under the weather this week and have very low stores of food in our house.

Yesterday I looked in the freezer to see what we had.  We had a bag of frozen cut up veggies that I had cut up earlier this year and froze for just this situation.  It was turnips, carrots, and peppers.  What kind of peppers?  I have no idea, but one was VERY spicy and one was not.  There was also a frozen bag of yellow that for weeks and weeks now I've been telling myself it's corn.  And then the other part of me goes, No, that can't be corn I remember eating all of the frozen corn.  I also found 4 frozen chicken legs in the freezer and a container of low sodium veggie broth in the pantry.

I poured the broth in a big pot and added 1.5 Cups of water.  I put in the legs frozen and waiting for the water to boil.  Then I cut up an entire onion and put it in with the chicken.  Once the chicken legs were cooked through, we removed them from the soup and added the rest of the frozen veggies.  The bag of "corn" turned out to be grated yellow squash and added a nice thickness to the soup without gross squashiness.  We pulled the meat from the chicken bone and skin and put it back into the soup.

Spices included:  Salt, pepper, Terregon, ground savory, basil, celery seeds, and powdered slippery elm for health.

I think you could use any spice you wanted.  These were just what was out and celery seeds are my favorite so I put them in everything really.

BAM!  Delicious chicken soup!  No need to thaw anything.  I think it still took 1.5 hrs to cook b/c it all started frozen, but we were also just taking our time to cook it...I bet you could cut it down if you were smart enough.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

In Which Technology Fights Back

What a busy time of year it is, isn't it?

I just returned from a work trip to Vegas. To answer my most commonly asked questions:
1.  I stayed in the Flamingo
2.  It was an updated room not an old one
3.  I did not leave the hotel for fear of getting lost and then sold as a sex slave
4.  I disapprove of Vegas's existance

Okay.  I got there.  Barely.  A marathon was going through the city and many of the major roads were closed and blocked off. My shuttle driver had to do some yelling in Russian to get us through and around.

My room had this amazing machine that played DVD's, CD's, ipods, and stuff with a special plug.  I had none of these things with me.  It had many large speakers hooked up to it, but I could not get the TV sound to play out of the speakers.  So that fancy gadget was worthless. 

The zipper on my luggage has reached its' last lap.  I almost thought I was going to have to cut my luggage open, but on my last try, the zipper finally worked right.

The light switch for the heat lamps in the bathroom are not located in the bathroom, they were located next to the entrance door.  That switch turned on the heat lamps and the closet light.  Not sure why.  Before I figured this out, I was taking a shower.  There was something in the shower that looked like broken plastic nobs.  They weren't pretty and fancy like the rest of the place, so I thought maybe that turns on the heat lamps, while you're already in the shower.  I was standing there, with the shower door open, waiting for the water to heat up, and I turned this lever from OFF to ON and those "broken" knobs shot water straight out at me and into the rest of the bathroom!  It was horrible and the heat lamps did NOT turn on.

There was also a tv in the mirror of my bathroom, but not a tub, so I could not lay in a bath and watch tv.  It also blocked my view of myself in the mirror, making it difficult to get ready in the morning.

Finally, the best part, once I figured it out, was the curtains opened and closed electronically by flipping a switch. 

And that was just my room.  I got lost every time I stepped out of my room.  Some elevators worked, some did not, and some would let the doors shut slooooowly and then nothing would happen.  There were flamingo's and ducks outside in a fake habitat. I  like watching them in the morning before I had to go to my meeting.  They would clean themselves by rubbing their heads on their feathers, spreading their natural oils around to help them float better.  Then they all tried to jump/fly down a little water fall.  Some ducks where less afraid than other ducks.  There was also a 30 lb albino catfish in there too.  Reinforced my determination to never eat catfish.

That was last week.

Saturday was my birthday and I turned 28, which is a really good number to be.  I never imagined myself this old before.  It seems though, that the older I get, the younger people think I am.  I was calling for room service in the hotel for food, and the lady asked me if she could speak to the adult in the room.  "Um, I am the adult."  Then we had to chat all about it, blah blah blah.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

In Which I Embrace and Question Technology


I figured out a quick way to upload my phone pictures to one spot online so that I can get them on my blog.  Welcome to the 21st Century!  I even did it right.  I wanted to use Instagram but that's an iPhone only app, so I googled Droid Instagram Apps and read reviews to pick out the best app for my needs that did the same thing as Instagram.  I am using Picplz.  My user name is Dirtball.

This picture is of the inside of our apartment from the porch.  The app gives you 18 filters to apply.  I picked number 14.

Tonight I make 3 pies at least.  Pumpkin, blueberry, and peach.  I might buy the "good" pie crust and make a pudding pie too.  We'll see how I'm feeling in the grocery store.  Goodness I love pie!

I can't decide if I want an Amazon Kindle Fire or not.  It will be good for traveling, I don't need to worry about not having enough books.  I can upload my free ezines I would like to read up to it.  I can play majhong tile on it.  It's wireless so I can do some computer stuffs. I can get a super cute case to put it in.

That's the good side.  The downside is that it weights almost a pound.  It's solid.  I don't think it will be easy to hold it in a comfortable position for long, which is necessary for reading.  The screen is a little bright, it's not like the older kindle screens, so that might make reading hard.  And finally, I do love the feel and smell of a good book.  But books are a little hard when traveling.  I'll be able to borrow books from friends on it and I'll be able to download free books and borrow books from the library on it.  I know! Blows your mind really.  I'm borrowing an electronic file that I can't even hold!  Crazy.  This will save me money b/c right now I usually buy a book in the airport and I'm terrible at returning physical library books and the closest library is rather small and not full of options.

What do you think?

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Happiness Owls

The other day I changed my Firefox persona or decorative background behind all of my internet buttons.  I didn't have a lot of time to choose and I ended up with owls and flowers.

It's a little busier than I usually pick, but it makes me sooo happy every time I look at it.  I'm so surprised by that, but it makes my office seem a little bit homey.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Discussions of What Makes Me Happy This Week

I want to talk about things that make me happy.  This week I didn't get enough sleep one night and it was a pretty anxious week for me.  I'm forever yelling at myself for not being perfect...and then yelling at my yelling self to give myself a break.  And of course I refuse to listen to anyone, even myself, telling me what to do, so I do the opposite and sit in sad misery feeling bad for myself or I watch Starcraft videos with Josh.  But there are happy things:

1.  My work computer desktop uses Microsoft 7 and I have a desk widget on it that tells me the time in different time zones.  With my new position I was able to add Mountain Time to it.  I now work with people in each of the US time zones (except Alaska and Hawaii)...which means I know people across the country.  I have to take each of them into account when I set up meetings, make phone calls, expect response emails.  This makes me happy.

2.  I grew a fruit fly, caught it, killed it, fed it to my venus fly trap.  NOTHING HAPPENED.  It didn't even close.  I'm not sure what that's about...but I'm happy I got to try.  I will try again.

3.  I paid my bills.  I was only late on my Comcast one...not the important ones like the credit card.  That makes me very happy.  I thought it was be hard and hurt me to pay the bills, so I had put it off.  It wasn't hard at all and it didn't hurt.

4.  Learning new things makes me happy.  My mom sent me a book she read once.  It's about healing and cells and stuff.  My childhood, life, view, some beliefs, everything I learned from my mom all makes sense now!  I now understand the thought process and reasoning in a whole new way behind telling your cells in your body you are not sick, and then you won't be.  (We didn't go to the doctor because we didn't believe in sickness....and to tell the truth, I never got sick.)  Reading that book makes me happy.  It's like a hug from my mom when ever I open it up.  It also forces me to open my mind REAL wide because it doesn't follow the path of logic and science I've been studying for the past 10 yrs.

Disclaimer:  We believed in sickness.  We weren't some crazy back woods family or anything like that.

5.  I'm happy Josh's mom and brother are visiting.  Having people in our house disrupting my fragile balance and routine is causing me to stress in anticipation...but I want to try and experiment.  I want to not be stressed about I'm going to think about all the strange, fun, and different things that could happen that will be exciting.  Plus they are family, not strangers, so it's easier to let them in for long times.  I'm not sure where they're going to sleep though....  I'm letting Josh worry about that one.

6.  I'm happy I have a kitty like Ackbar.  This morning I tried to pick him up but he was in the kitchen, so I had to get past Josh who was looking in the pantry, and I jostled him.  Then Ackbar ran away from me and went through Josh's legs, in his way. I chased Ackbar out and bumped into Josh really good.  Then the tapioca fell and spilled a lot.  I picked up Ackbar and gave him a big hug.  Josh blamed both of us for the tapioca, and I held Ackbar and we watched Josh clean it up. Ackbar likes to be held so long as he can still watch what's going on.  I think he's a scaredy cat and is braver when he's held.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

In Which Coffee Makes Me Manic

It's Holiday Season!!!   I've made my favorite side dish fluff.  Gluten free apply mini muffins are just as delicious as gluten ones!  I have 2 thanksgiving parties this week.  (One is work related).  I'm helping an older couple I know with low mobility to get their newly moved into house ready for the holidays this weekend.  Josh's mom and brother are visiting.  Craft day is Sunday! 

Next week I shall bake at minimum 3 pies and eat at minimum one piece of each.  I'll wake up early and drive to memphis on Friday.  Spend the weekend with the Colombini family.  

Friendsgiving is coming!

The Lions might win!

I want nothing for Christmas unless it was crafted by someone or from a local store.  No target, no kohls, no walmart gifts.  Save you money and give me a hug!  I love hugs...unless you are creepy.  Okay, so I'm more particular than most on who I let hug me, but I'm trying!

Ackbar grew special armpit tufts of hair that stick straight out for this season.

And I get to see Demitri Martin on Friday!

Damn, it feels good to be a gangster.

Monday, November 14, 2011

In Which I Eat an Apple and Type at the Same Time

It sure has been a while hasn't it?  Well, it's been quite a busy past few weeks here in Nashvegas.  During the days it was all GET-READY- FOR-THE-MEETING at work, then at home it was all P.A.R.T.A.Y!!!

Just kidding on that last part.  It was more like SLEEPING.  We did go out one Friday night for a friend's birthday.  We went to Tribe, one of the local gay bars.  The bartender called Josh "babe".  I think he was shocked and maybe a little complimented.  I always feel happy when bartenders say nice things to me like that....but I'm a woman and that's what men do, compliment us.  (Not really sure what I'm talking about here...just typing really fast.)  Then we went to Karaoke! Whooo hooo!  I love karaoke so much.  We went to a different place than my normal bar, and it was much less crowded.  The best part?  I got to sing Wonder Boy by Tenacious D!  The other place has a strict no Tenacious D policy.  It's my favorite song to sing.

Sunday I woke up early and drove with co-workers to Philadelphia, Mississippi.  Mississippi mind you.  Have you heard of this town? Probably not because there is nothing there.  The casino was nice and I actually did like the incredibly and unbelievably long walk from the room to the main meeting area.  The food was terrible though!  And having to avoid wheat as I do, there was very little to choose from.  Mostly just chicken wings.  There were no veggies the entire week.

I tried to bring my own food, which mostly worked out well.  I did have to eat one gluten free bagel with peanut butter.  It was dry and horrible.  I only like bagels when they have 1/4 inch of cream cheese on them.  I had bought some rasberries and brought them with me.  On the first day I ate a bunch and then felt terribly sick.  The sickness pain hit me while I was walking through the loud and smoke-filled casino floor to our "food".  I sat down, then had to get up and find the bathroom.  I asked a woman at the nearby resteraunt, and she wouldn't let me in there and looked at me like I was a freak because I didn't know where the check in desk was.  I found the woman's bathroom just in time to throw up in the garbage can in front of the woman cleaning the bathroom.  That was fun.

My new position at work is sort of a big deal.  I didn't know.  I've already got Chiefs lined up and waiting to talk to me.  I exaggerate only a little.  The head boss here talked to me again.  That's like a record or something.

How long does it take for fruit flies to hatch from an apple core?  How long can I keep an apple core on my desk before my coworkers make me throw it away?  Oh, I need the fruit flies to feed my venus fly trap.  I might catch some ants tonight and bring them in tomorrow to feed it.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Update to Imagine

So.  It's the end of the night.  Josh got me pumped with some hard cider and candy.  We totally put away the clothes and moved the bed.  There was a little bossing around where Josh wouldn't let me vacuumed before AND after the bed moved, so the floor isn't vacuumed the best.  Ackbar was worried but enjoyed the excitement.  The next steps are to move more furniture, clean better, finish the laundry and finalize putting away the summer clothes.  Then onto cleaning the closet. 

We got rid of one plastic weapon and I found a book, an eye pillow, and some papers.  There was a ton of litter between the mattress and the box spring.  I don't know how that got to be.

The best part? I can lay in bed and stare at my volcano picture now.


Imagine with me. 

I imagine tonight Josh and I get all the laundry done and clothes put away.  I imagine vacuuming the floor.  I imagine cleaning out and getting rid of some of our plastic weapons under the bed.  I imagine organizing the stuff under the bed.  I imagine finding things I thought I had lost under there too. Then I imagine moving the room around so the bed is against the wall.  I imagine hanging up more pictures and things that make me happy.  I imagine hanging up things to look at from bed.  I imagine my bedroom looking more like it did before I got married and didn't worry about it being to "girly".

I imagine Ackbar being upset by all this.

Will this all get done?  Unlikely...but it's nice to think about.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

C & P Straathof Family Camp

Went camping with the family this weekend.  We met them up in Indiana (down for them).  It was a very nice private campground next to an old limestone quarry that filled in with water to be an awesome swimming hole.  It was too cold for us to swim, but it was nice to look at it an imagine.

We got a camp site as far back as possible and no one was in sight!  I was as loud as I wanted to be all day and all night!  I yelled and talked loud and laughed and didn't worry about bothering my neighbors.  It was wonderful and refreshing.

My favorite part was when my brother and Dad found a large stick and started playing baseball with it and the green walnut balls of death on the ground.  If you hit one good enough it cracked into a bunch of pieces and the hard nut in the center would fly straight at the pitcher - usually my brother.  That's me in the picture...I missed the walnut, it's down by my left shoe in the picture.  And yes, that amazing blue truck is indeed my truck.
 Since I mostly see my family outside, this is a good time to introduce them to you, my following.

This is Mandy my sister, Lianne my Sister in Law, me, and Josh.  I'm not sure why I'm so dramatic.

(The gnome followed my parents down and did a poor job of guarding against racoons.)
 This is my dad.  He kept stuff in the front pocket of his overalls, making his chest and belly look bigger than normal and really weird.
 This is me with dirty hair, my mom, and my sister.  My mom made the hair band she is wearing.  Hopefully I get one in black someday.  Mandy is the cute one.
This is Mandy and her husband Nick.  Nick likes beer in an artist's sense, not a drunken lout sense.  I suspect that he drinks less than the rest of the family, but drinks a lot better too.  Also, Mandy is a lot more like me than you all think.  Do you see that face!?!

My mother did not email me a picture of my brother, so you are going to have to do with this screen shot of a stick man with little legs and arms drowning in a lake formed from a phallic cloud. 

And that was my weekend. 

Sunday, October 16, 2011


In my freshman year of college, I took an intro geology class with Dr. Reed Wicander.  It was the start of many long hours and thoughts in that classroom and the hallway of that building.  I sat in the second row.  Students are more likely to get A's if they sit up front, but I never sit in the front row b/c teachers unconsciously do weird stuff sometimes in class.  It's better to place a little distance between you and them.

I had a professor, Dr. J, who would get white spittle built up in the corners of his mouth when he talked and when he got passionate and started calling us his little birds or yelling about how Mother Nature is a whore, he would spit it out onto the first row.  Sometimes teachers will lean against the desk as they talk or put one leg up on the desk, and then their crotch is RIGHT THERE and you spend the entire time focusing on not looking and not thinking about it.  And that's why I choose the second row.

I sat next to a guy  named Joel, and he was my partner for the lab part of class.  He was a little nerdy and weird looking, and that made me nervous because I didn't know how to act around him.  But he did his work, was smart, and was overall a good partner, so I didn't care, and in the end stopped being nervous.

Every day I would come in, get out my three ring binder for notes, my pencil, and my pen.  I would spend some time arranging them perfectly in front of me (it was one long table that everyone sat at, not individual desks), then I would open the binder up to the first page.  It was the schedule of what we would be doing for the semester in that class.  I would cross the date for the last time we had class.  At the bottom was the words:
Final Exam
Dec 10
I would draw a box around it or add stars and exclaim to Joel that Dec 10 was my birthday!  I'm pretty sure I told him it was my birthday at least once a week for the entire semester.

Then one day it was Dec 10 and it was my birthday and we had sat down to take the exam.  Joel handed me a sparkly cardboard crown thing, and was like "Happy Birthday!"  Isn't that the nicest thing ever!!!?!?!  I really wasn't expecting it at all.    And it's one of my more favorite memories to think about.

It's also why birthday's are really important to me.  It's a special day and it should be recognized by everyone.  Not my birthday! But everyone's birthday!  Even if you don't know someone well, if you remember their birthday or are nice to them on their birthday, it means a lot.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Well Dressed Woman

Today is Casual Friday...the best day of them all.  I'm wearing my comfy new jeans.  They are very nice looking but are not skin tight and do not have built in fade marks. I like them because they are standard jeans, they make no assumptions, they are no nonsense.  They are also too long, so I have the bottoms folded up 1.5 inches.  I've grown to love the look (I must fold all my jeans/pants up). 

I am wearing an older green tshirt that must have been high quality and I've worn it for years, but it isn't too faded nor is it stretched out at all even though it's a stretchy tshirt.  It's a nice forest green.  I wore my scarf that my mom knitted for me, but I designed.  It's one of my more favorite things I own.  It's mostly a dark green with a light green mix and some spots of purple and gold.  It looks like moss and has the texture of bark on a tree sort of.  I designed it to go with my brown leather coat, the coat is the tree and the scarf represents moss and leaves and a sunlight dappled forest.  And it actually does.

My hair is day old, meaning I didn't wash it yesterday or today.  It is looking nice since it's casual friday and I am going for a non-professional business look.  The ends are all sticking out but the left side is a little flat.

For shoes I'm wearing my favorite pair, my gnome kicking shoes.  They are black slip on skating shoes.  World Industries is the brand.  They have little bloody hand prints sliding down the sides of them...from all the gnomes I kick.  They are a size too big for me and I have Dr. Scholl's really expensive inserts in them.  They are the best most comfortable shoes I've ever owned and Josh bought them for me.  I love it when he buys me shoes.

Oh, my socks don't match my outfit...they are polar fleece (surprise surprise) flame print that where the back ground is black and the flames are bright yellow, red, green, purple, blue, etc.  I wanted to wear just white cotton socks today but I couldn't find any in the sock basket. I  think I shifted them all to the bottom the other day when I was looking for my patterned nylon sock things.

I also wore this kahki jacket from Cabella's that my parents got me when I graduated college.  It was the first time I wore it this season and I found green gloves in it that match my outfit perfectly!  It also has a Gorillaz pin on it that is a green apple core.

My earings are tarnished gold hoops.  I got 3 hoop earrings, silver, gold, and copperish for $6 at Target yesterday.  They are much higher quality, despite the price, than the ones I got rid of.  (I got rid of them to make room for the new ones).

I'm just so amazed at how well I match and how well I'm put together today and I honestly did nothing to make it so.  I wore the shirt because it was a tshirt and was in my drawer, I wore the jeans because it's casual friday, I put the hairband in my hair b/c it's dirty, and I wore the scarf because it gets really cold in the office.  I put on the shoes because I love them.  And the jacket is just the right weight for the weather.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Sphene My Love

Finally, I have a scientific paper published!  I am an official author, first author at that!  Two years of my life in a 22 page paper on sphene.  I do love sphene. 

Do you see that little guy?  The brown one edging in on some quarts?  That's a sphene.  They all look like that.  Usually they are more orange in color, I think the picture changed the color a little.  The big white one is quarts, the big one off to the left is sanidine, and all the black is volcanic glass.  This picture is of a microscope slide made from one of my rocks.  HRL 21 I bet.

For this picture I crushed up some pumice in a tube with a baseball bat.  Then I sorted out the sphene from the glass using water and density differences.  Then using a pin taped to a pencil, face grease, and a microscope I picked out individual sphene grains from the "sand" I had made.  It was then mounted on a slide by the lovely Danny Flanny at the SHRIMP (Super High Resolution Ion Micro Probe) or a microscope the size of a room.  This image was back-scatter imagery.  It's been a while, but I think that means they sent something at the grain and what bounced back was recorded as this image.  Anyways, each circle is a spot I took a measurement from with the SHRIMP and the numbers are the estimated temperature of the magma (lava) when that part of the sphene grew/formed.  I could, but I won't, show you a chart I made with all the temperatures comparing the outside of the grain to the inside, as well as the dark spots to the light spots.

Finally, this last picture is AWESOME!  I call it Skeleton Sphene because it looks like bones on the outside of it.  That's why I took this picture, because it looked cool.  I showed Calvin and it turns out it's actually cool because the sphene on the edges is dissolving and turning into illminite, the bones.  That shows that something interesting was happening in the magma at the time of cooling.