Category Archives: Life Stuff

Things to do on vacation

I’m taking a week off of work. It doesn’t happen often enough, and as usual, I have an overly ambitious list of things I’d like to do.

  1. Get my Batling CD exchange CD done and in the mail.
  2. Finish reading The Da Vinci Code.
  3. Get my car’s oil changed.
  4. Keep caught up with the Olympic coverage I’m recording on my TiVo.
  5. Get caught up with all the other TV programs on my TiVo.
  6. Finish the first two weeks of lessons for my B&N University film course.
  7. Read at least a couple of other books besides The Da Vinci Code.
  8. Organize my clothes (long story).
  9. Make some cards. I need to get inspired to do some crafting again.
  10. Get back to my cross stitch.

I’m sure I’m forgetting a few things, and I have a few general errands I’d like to get out of the way too (like getting Blazer in for annual shots), but if I could accomplish everything on this list, I’d consider this a very satsifying week off.

The Olive Garden. Need I say more?

Well, okay, I’ll say a little more.

I was rather looking forward to an evening where I could just veg, watch a little tv, perhaps finally design my Christmas thank you cards. But then my mom said two magical words: Olive Garden. I was pretty sure it was just her way of bribing me into going grocery shopping with her, but I didn’t care.

So I had some great soup, salad, and breadsticks, plus a glass of wine.

Then we stopped by Bed Bath & Beyond, where I discovered that very little of my kitchenware pattern is left, and what little was left was on clearance. Hmm. Guess I shouldn’t have waited so long to pick up more pieces. You can see a picture of the olive oil bottle I have here. I just found a website that has the matching coasters, so perhaps there’s some hope I can find a few more things out there.

The Better Version of 2005

Since everybody’s doing it, and I feel it’s probably best to redeem my last post, here’s a bit more fun version of the past year.

January The 2005 legislative session started, and I worked a lot. I also brought home a new kitten and eventually gave her a name, Blazer. Guinness was overjoyed to have a new playmate. I started the fourth part of a four-part course on the book of Revelation. Oh, and I got around to getting a new prescription for my contacts.

February More session, lots of work. Went to a friend’s nephew’s dedication at our church. An online acquaintance died and I sent flowers to her funeral in New York state on behalf of our reading group.

March Session? Still going. The last Saturday of the month, I helped friends move from their apartment to a townhouse.

April Baseball! Session was still going strong, but with season tickets, I managed to get to a couple of games. The Revelation study I began the fall of 2003 ended.

May More baseball! Regular session ended, special session began. I went to a Saints game as part of a friend’s birthday near the end of the month.

June Most of this month was spent visiting my dad in the hospital, while special session was going and I was still working overtime. I met a bunch of Batlings one evening after spending seven hours at Regions Hospital during one of my dad’s surgeries, and I’m not at all sure how I not only stayed awake, but went out with a friend after that and had a nice conversation with a guy I met at a bar. All in all, that day is a bit of a blur. I turned 32 on the same day my older two nephews were on national television (CBS Early Show), but did they wish me a happy birthday on their sign? No, they just said hi to their grandparents. At the end of June I started hanging out in the Batcave, and my life was so much improved by it.

July On July 2, I attended and did the Bible reading for the wedding of the friends I helped move in March. Went to more games with Batlings. Oh, and around the middle of the month, special session finally ended, and there was much rejoicing. At the end of the month my brother, sister-in-law, and three nephews arrived for a two-week visit and I finally got to meet the youngest, Zach.

August My brother performed a miracle and got my networking-challenged laptop onto my wireless network, so I could participate in Batling game threads during the games I wasn’t attending. Went to a friend’s baby shower. Went to Valleyfair. Started going to Friday happy hours with Batlings.

September Labor. Day. Weekend. I might have also celebrated a friend’s birthday and gone to a few Twins games, and there might have been a storm.

October My parents celebrated their 35th anniversary. Baseball ended for the year. Some Batlings and I had a girls’ “poker” night. There may have been pillow fighting. I went to the Jason Mraz concert, but more importantly since I’m related to two of the band members, I saw Dropping Daylight as one of his opening acts.

November I learned that Sioux Falls is a great place to drive for happy hour. I finally saw my friends’ baby who was born in mid-October. Blazer turned a year old.

December Happy hour at Tom Reid’s. Batling holidayish gatherings tonight and Friday. Christmas. Making plans to move out to an apartment in St. Paul March 1 or so.

Hopefully the Really Bad Year Is Over

The year’s worth of time that began November 29, 2004, is now over, and I hope that the badness goes with it.

That was the day one of my three-year-old cats, Dublin, was diagnosed with asthma and died of an attack shortly before I arrived at the vet’s office to pick her up.

After that, things were mostly okay for a while.

But then in June, my dad contracted a life-threatening infection and only an emergency amputation saved him. So the summer was a lot busier than usual, and work was harder than usual, including working a few weekends, well into July.

Just as things were looking up, a storm came through in September, and left two trees on my parents’ house, damaging their sunroom and the roof of the main house. Also, a branch from one tree make a good-sized hole in the roof, causing quite a bit of water damage inside the house. To date, the only repair work that has been able to be completed is removing the trees that had to come down.

As if cleaning up at my parents’ wasn’t enough, the house of friends of mine was destroyed by a tornado during that same storm. Fortunately, their insurance company has been taking care of most everything, but I did go over one evening shortly after to help box up things from the kitchen for storage.

While backing my dad’s minivan out of the garage to go over to my friends’ house the day after the storm, I bumped a car that was parked exactly across from the driveway. I have no idea why I didn’t see it, but since cars are never parked there on school days, I certainly didn’t expect it to be there. There was only paint damage to the minivan’s back bumpter, but the other car was apparently not drivable (it was fine by what I could see, but whatever), since it was there for several more days, totally in the way and violating two-hour school day and overnight parking resrictions.

Then my mom’s car got hit while she was proceeding through an intersection in October, nearly totaling it. Mom was, thank goodness, uninjured.

Then my car was broken into while parked at a friend’s apartment building this past weekend. No big deal, really, just one more annoying thing to put up with.

Thank goodness for the highlights, noted in my Thanksgiving post. I’d like more of those in the coming year, please.

Winter Shoes

Have I mentioned how unfond I am of winter? I don’t mind the cold, despite that my bedroom will be no warmer than 60 degrees until spring — it beats the 80-85 degrees all summer.

But snow…ugh. Just running a few errands last night was a pain, having to clear off my car after I left each store, encountering drivers who can’t cope with a little of the fluffy stuff. And my commute to work is long enough without adding a little snow.

But mostly, I need new shoes. I’ve really come to love my new boot-cut jeans, but they’re so long, and none of my boots are appropriate for walking through snow, especially when there’s ice under it. I’d prefer to not fall on my ass while just walking to my car.

I used to have a couple pairs (one black, one brown) of comfortable slip-on shoes with rubber soles and 2-inch heels, but they’ve bit the dust.

I had a pair of Eastland shoes that I thought would be a good backup pair until I found something else, but it turns out they’ve got huge cracks in the soles. The other day when it was raining? Yep, my feet were mighty wet when I got home.

So, long, boring story short, I need shoes. I hate shoe shopping.

Counting My Blessings

Even though Thanksgiving is a fairly boring holiday for me, or perhaps because it is, I like to take a little time to think about the blessings in my life over the past year. In general, it’s been a relatively bad year, but there are still lots of good things to be thankful for.

Number 1: My dad is alive. Another 24 hours without treatment back on that day in June, and he wouldn’t be.

Number 2: My parents are still together, and celebrated their 35th anniversary a few weeks ago. As bad as the summer was, I can’t imagine how much worse it might have been without my mom.

Number 3: That I got to see my three nephews for a couple of weeks over the summer. I wish I could see them more often than every other year or so.

Number 4: Batgirl, the Batcave, and baseball in general. I can’t think of any better ways to keep my mind distracted while things were bad, or better ways to spend a good time even when life is fine.

Number 5: The silver friends (i.e., the new ones through the Batcave). Internet friends are the best, especially when they start becoming your real friends. They have brought a new life to my life, and I’m enjoying it more than I can say. Roadtrip, anyone?

Number 6: The gold friends (i.e, the ones who have been around forever). These people are the foundation, the rocks I know I can always turn to. I hope that even as some of us are starting families, we’ll continue to be a family.

Number 7: My job. Sure, it’s not great every day, just like any other job, but I enjoy what I do. And the paycheck is nice too.

Number 8: My cats, Guinness and Blazer. Heh, I almost typed Dublin’s name right there, even though she’s been gone since four days after last Thanksgiving. I still miss her so much, but Blazer is adorable and sweet, and a fabulous playmate for Guinness. Pictures to come soon!

So, thanks to everyone who’s been there for me this past year. Without you, I’d…well, I’d probably drink less, but you know what I mean.

I’m *so* sleepy…

I really need to get out of this thing where I can’t fall asleep before 1 in the morning. Getting up at 6 in the morning is challenging at best. This is the sort of day when I wish I didn’t have such a high caffeine tolerance. I’ve had nothing but coffee and chai all day, but I need toothpicks to prop my eyes open.

I should probably go shoe shopping this evening. Perhaps I’ll just make a stop at JCPenney on my way home to see what they have. Then watch a little tv and go to bed. *yawn*