Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The End of the Road

Or at least the end of NaBloPoMo.  I cannot believe I actually blogged every day for 30 days straight.  I will admit I actually doubted my ability to complete this task.  What surprised me the most is not that I actually did it but that I did it with only using blog prompts twice.  I knew I had more thoughts in my head that I wanted to get out.  It was just a matter of getting in front of the computer and making it happen.  I got a lot of positive feedback from this month though.  Not that I had any plans to discontinue my blog, but I am definitely encouraged to keep it going.  I also have some better ideas on what to write to interest people.  I do intend to make more time for blogging than I have in the past.  I don't promise to write every day.  Some days are just too busy and finding the time is near impossible.  After all, I do have a family and a job and a life (or at least some version of one).  However, I do think that writing about my somewhat life can be slightly interesting.  I do have a good idea for a series of posts I want to write and they are perfect for the upcoming Christmas season.  So stay tuned...it is sure to be enjoyable!

Monday, November 29, 2010

A Case of the Mondays

"Look's like somebody's got a case of the Mondays!"  The line made famous by the movie Office Space, which just so happened to be filmed here in Austin.  Yep, that was me today.  After the long weekend, I woke up with absolutely no desire to return to the office.  No real reason except that my bed was warm and comfy and I didn't want to get out of it.  Plus, while I am a ton better, I am still recovering from my cold from last week.  The barking cough is gone but I am still cruddy.  That does not make for a good Monday.  My boss commented on the way out of the office this afternoon that I had been quiet today which was out of the ordinary for me.  Well, I had spent most of the day with my headphones on and tried to focus on getting my work done.  Truth was I didn't want to work late so I wanted to knock all my work out before the end of the day.  Also, I spent most of Sunday in a bad mood and really just didn't want to deal with people today.  Shortly before I left the office, the Sheriff sent me a text that Kiddo was sick.  At that point I knew I was in for a long night.  It appears that the stomach bug that has been going around has hit my house.  First, the Sheriff and now Kiddo.  Here's hoping that I can avoid it since I really don't need to miss any work.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Weekend Over

I can't believe this weekend is over.  It was so nice to have a few days off.  I can't say they were relaxing since I was busy getting ready for Thanksgiving and fighting a cold the whole weekend but it was still a good all the same.  Since month end was Friday, we will be working on our close out to wrap up the month.  That means a busy week for us.  But then I am starting to feel like that is the story of my life.  I was able to knock out a few more Christmas gifts this weekend. I am just waiting for suggestions from a few of my family members so I can finish up.  I also need to figure when I can get the decorations out of storage so we can get the tree up and make this place feel a little bit more like Christmas.  The bad thing is I am just not ready for it to be Christmas yet.  I can't explain it but I am having a hard time getting into the spirit.  Here's hoping that adding some decorations to the house will remedy that problem.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1

The Sheriff decided to surprise me this afternoon with a date to see the new Harry Potter movie.  He had arranged for his parents to watch Kiddo for the night so we could check out the one movie we have both been wanting to see.  Overall I thought the movie was good but then I am a fan of all of the Harry Potter books and movies.  This movie was definitely used to set up the action that will occur in the second part.  It has been more than a year since I read book 7 so I am going to start re-reading it tonight to see what was left out and to remind myself of what will come next.  What I remembered from the book was that the time Harry, Hermoine, and Ron spent in the woods seemed long and drawn out.  It felt the same way in the film.  There were several things that I felt like they touched on in the film but kind of glossed over.  I am hoping they will be focused on a little more closely in the next film.  I am ready for the action to really get going in the next film.  I feel it will be pretty intense and will move really quickly.  I do fear that I will have the same reaction to the final film that I did to the final book.  I wanted more.  I wanted to find out about Harry's life post Voldemort.  I realize the epilogue was intended to show us how everyone turned out but I felt like it was just a glimpse and there was so much more we could learn about them.  I am curious, though, to see how they are going to handle some of the scenes from the Battle of Hogwarts in the movie.  Part 2 is supposed to come out right before my birthday in July so guess what I will be asking for this year.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Iron Bowl 2010

In the state of Alabama, there is only one football game that matters: the Iron Bowl.  This is a game were battles are fought and legends are born.  This game pits family members against each other and can turn best friends into bitter enemies.  Alabama versus Auburn.  Winner takes all.  There are so many stories to tell and so much history involved.  I have watched Alabama lose 6 straight years only to come back and shut out Auburn the next year.  I have seen last minute defeats and come from behind wins.  I had no idea what to expect today.  Alabama is the reigning National Champion while Auburn is undefeated so far this season.  But anything could happen.  Alabama came out of the gun firing hard and hitting harder, forcing 3 consecutive 3 and outs while accumulating 21 unanswered points all in the first half.  I thought we had a good shot at pulling off the win and ruining Auburn's perfect season but I tried not to get too optimistic.  That was a good thing.  Unfortunately, Alabama's lead didn't hold and Auburn ended up coming from behind to defeat Alabama by 1 point.  It wasn't the blow out many expected but it was definitely one for the record books.  Surprisingly I managed to stay calmer than normal during the game thanks to some wonderful friends who came over to eat leftovers and watch the game with us.  The company was great which took the sting off of the loss a bit.  Now I get to listen to another year of Auburn bragging about their Iron Bowl win.  Just remember...there is always next year.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thanksgiving

Thank goodness Thanksgiving is finally over.  I feel like I have been planning this meal for months.  Truthfully, I had planned out the meal pretty well.  I pour over cookbooks looking for the perfect recipes to complete the meal.  Once the recipes were selected, I planned the cooking method of each item and then mapped out the time everything needed to start cooking in order to be completed on time.  The Sheriff was a big help today.  He took care of the last minute cleaning and house preparation only coming in the kitchen when I called him.  The kitchen was my territory today and it was in everyone's best interest to stay out of my way.  The in-laws seemed pleased with the meal and I received many complements.  All in all it was a successful day.  However, my cold is back full force.  I guess I over did it yesterday when I was feeling better and my body is letting me know today.  There will be no 3 AM Black Friday shopping for me.  I hit a couple of the sales online and purchased a couple of gifts but that craziness is not really my scene.  The only deal I saw that was really something we would love to have is the grill the Sheriff has been eying since the summer that is $100 off at Lowe's.  Unfortunately, neither one of us has any desire to fight the crowd to go buy it nor do we need to spend the money.  Instead, my Black Friday will be spent chilling on the couch trying to fight this cold and watching the Iron Bowl.  Sounds like a good day to me.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Wednesday

Good news! I am feeling better today.  Not 100% but at least functioning which is a vast improvement over yesterday.  The day was pretty busy.  This morning I spent a couple of hours shopping for the Children's Christmas party at my office.  Then I still had some work stuff to take care of.  I was able to scoot out a little early so I could hit the grocery store before it got too bad.  HEB was smart though offering free wine samples while you were shopping.  Nice way to relax the shoppers, HEB Plus!  We also had to pick up the turkey and a few other things for tomorrow.  The morning is going to be crazy busy but I will still tune into the Macy's Parade.  After all, Christmas can't start until Santa appears at the end of the parade.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Tuesday

Today started off much better than yesterday morning did.  The sound of the alarm at 5:30 wasn't as traumatic as the day before thank goodness but it was still just as unwelcomed.  You see, despite the fact it wasn't even remotely cold yesterday, the Sheriff and I decided it was time to put the comforter in the duvet cover on the bed since the cover was freshly washed.  That meant it was slightly warm (stuffy) in our room last night.  Stuffiness and my sinuses do not play well together coupled with the fact we had a freeze warning in Austin less than a week ago and it is now 80 degrees.  I woke up feeling less than 100% but it wasn't until I was half way down the toll road to work that it hit me...I am sick.  I am talking itchy, watery eyes, runny nose, coughing, sneezing, congestion, the whole 9 yards.  And of course, my beloved ClaritinD was in the medicine cabinet at home.  So I suffered through the first half of the day getting progressively worse until lunch time when I could venture out to a drug store and put my HSA debit card to good use.  The medicine definitely helped but I am still feeling very under the weather.  So now I am worried about feeling crappy on Thanksgiving since I am cooking for everyone.  I told the Sheriff to let his family know there might be a change in plans but I hopefully I will be feeling better so that isn't necessary.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Monday

I know by the way I woke up this morning that is would be a rough day.  Apparently I was sleeping hard this morning when my alarm went off.  I guess I was thinking it was still the weekend because I sat up and yelled, "Oh crap!  It's Monday."  Don't know how I didn't wake the Sheriff up.  Needless to say, I didn't want to get out of bed.  But I got a move on and headed to work like normal.  Thanks to the short week, work was just as busy as I expected.  Fortunately, the Sheriff was off today so he was able to start some of the preparations for the big day on Thursday.  Most of the cleaning and laundry have been done.  Tomorrow we will be hitting the store to get the last minute stuff we need for the meal.  I am hoping to avoid the crowds that I am sure will be at the store on Wednesday.  Besides, I have to pick up the turkey from Popeye's Wednesday.  I just hope the plan I have mapped out in my head works.  We will be working on a tight schedule especially since the Sheriff has to work Thanksgiving.  But I am sure it will all be fine.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

The Week to Come

I feel like I am running out of things to say.  I know this week has probably been pretty lacking in the blog department and for that I am sorry.  I am not making any promises about the upcoming week.  For a short work week, it is going to be crazy busy.  We are coming up on month end so there is a lot to be done to prepare for that.  Also, I have Thanksgiving and all the preparation that will go into that as well.  I am sure I will be wiped out by the time Friday rolls around.  You can forget about me hitting the stores at 4 AM on Black Friday.  There is nothing I want bad enough to be out that time of the morning trying to score a deal.  (Plus, the Sheriff will be working so I have to stay home with Kiddo.)  I will consider some of the online deals that I am sure will be offered.  Those are much more my speed.  I also won't let anything pull me away from the big game that will be happening Friday afternoon.  It is no secret that I will be propped up in my chair Friday afternoon at 1:30 glued to the Iron Bowl.  Here's hoping Alabama can pull off a big win.  Auburn has had a good season and I would love to see us spoil that.  (Yes, I know that is mean but that's what rivalries are for!)  Given that I am only 9 days away from the end of this little experiment, I fully intend to post every day this week with an update of the Thanksgiving preparations as well as thoughts on the Iron Bowl.  Oh how I wish I was home right now!  Plus it makes me really sad that my parents are spending Thanksgiving alone this year since my dad can't get off to make the trip to Texas.  Fortunately we will be making the trip to Alabama in a couple of weeks for an early family Christmas.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Quiet

Not much to say this evening.  It was a rough day where my lack of patience and temper got the best of me.  I decided it was best to lay low because of that.  I ended up pulling out my sewing box and working on some old cross stitch patterns that I had.  I was given a sewing machine a couple of years ago and I have never used it.  I would really like to learn how to sew more.  I haven't tried to do any sewing in a long time.  It was something that I regularly did with my aunt and grandmother.  I am probably better at it than I realize but I know I have much more to learn.  I don't think I would ever be one to make my own clothes or anything but it would still be a nice skill to have.  I also used to crochet but I haven't even touched my needle in years.  I might just have to go get some yarn to see if I can remember how to do it.  Now my thumb hurts from sewing all day.  I forgot how relaxing it could be and how wrapped up I could get in it.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Girl Time

I got some much needed girl time with my best friend today.  We have been planning it and looking forward to it for weeks.  Since we don't work together anymore, Steph and I don't get to see each other as often as we would like.  So we made plans to head to East Side Cafe for lunch then over to the Palmer Events Center for the Austin Junior League's Christmas Affair.  The Christmas Affair was crowded as usual  but I was able to score some cute Alabama items to add to my collection.  I have been debating going back down there tomorrow to do some more shopping but I know I probably don't need to.  My body is still recovering from the craziness of the Thanksgiving Pot Luck at work and walking around the events center all afternoon didn't really help that much.  As it stands right now, I am looking at hitting the bed as soon as I hit post on this entry and staying that way until the Sheriff comes home from work in the morning.  This weekend should be fairly laid back.  The main thing we need to do is get the house prepped for Thanksgiving so that we only have to do minimal pickup on Wednesday before the in-laws invade on Thursday.  As much as I would love to go catch the new Harry Potter movie this weekend, I think it is wise that I take the opportunity to relax and get stuff done around my house.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Exhausted

Yep, exhausted...that would be me this evening.  We had our Thanksgiving pot luck at work today and I spent most of my day helping setup, putting food out, and cleaning up.  To say I am worn out would be an understatement.  Because of that, you aren't going to get much of a blog from me tonight.  I am sitting here waiting for the Alabama massacre of Georgia State to end so I can head to bed.  At 63-7 with 6 minutes left, I would say we pretty well have this one in the bag.  Now we just have the Iron Bowl to look forward to next week to wrap up our regular season and then an undetermined bowl game.  Here's hoping work flies by quickly tomorrow.  I am looking forward to a low key weekend.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Things I Am Grateful For

With Thanksgiving only a week away, I had the thought that I should talk about some things in my life that I am grateful for.  Of course I have a wonderful family, a good job, and great friends and those are all things I am grateful for.  But I was thinking along a different line this morning.  I was laying in bed shivering a little bit thanks to the cold (ok...cool) snap that has hit Central Texas and the fact that I forgot to turn the heater on before I went to bed.  I always sleep with the ceiling fan on because I need air circulating so I don't get stopped up.  Well, the fan was making me cold but I didn't want to get out of bed until I warmed up a bit.  That is where my handy dandy ceiling fan remote makes my life better.  I am extremely grateful to whomever thought up the brilliant idea of a remote controlled ceiling fan.  That is one of the greatest inventions ever.  The other thing I realized I was grateful for was the snooze button.  I am so not a morning person so I will take every extra second of sleep I can get.  I hope to add a few more things I am grateful for between now and the end of the month.  So be on the look out and feel free to share things you are grateful for.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

What to Write About

Yesterday I mentioned that it can be hard to come up with topics to write about when trying to blog daily.  I received a comment in response to the post that I felt the need to respond to.  I was asked about writing about my job.  Well, one thing I learned pretty soon after entering the blogging community was that talking about your job was pretty much off limits.  Just ask Heather Armstrong what happens when you discuss your job or co-workers on your personal blog.  Beyond the basics of saying that I have a job or that work has been busy, I think it is best to leave that topic off the table.  People I work with read this blog.  The last thing I need is to say anything that could be taken wrong and put my job at risk because of it.  There are other topics that I know to leave off the table as well.  Some things are just to personal to write about publicly while others stand a risk of offending people so I just won't discuss them.  I have set some boundaries for myself and I try to stick to them.  One time I pushed the boundaries and I almost got in trouble for it.  I won't do that again.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Day 15

Yay!!!  I am officially half way through NaBloPoMo.  I now understand why other blog writers find this so hard.  The truth is my life is actually pretty boring and there isn't always something to share.  I have found it hard to be creative on a daily basis.  I have also found it hard to remember to blog every day and to set aside time for it.  I have decided that I would do well to use the voice recorder on my phone to record my thoughts though.  I have come up with several great topic ideas and  written almost complete blog posts in my head during my morning drive to work.  It is the only time of the day that I truly have to myself.  So that is really when I can get lost in my own thoughts and really examine what I feel about a particular subject.  I am just glad that I have gotten this far into the month without skipping a day.  I just hope I can keep it up.  I know next week will be rough with Thanksgiving and all the preparations that are going to go into that.  But I am sure I will be able to find some time once the Sheriff leaves for work and Kiddo is off to dream land.  Let's just hope I am not so exhausted that I forget!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Prompting Again

I'm tired tonight and the creative juices aren't really flowing so I am going to my trusty list of blog prompts and working from there this evening.

What is the most useful thing you own?
That one is so easy. My iPhone. I don't know how I function without it. I left my phone at home when we went to church tonight and I really felt like I was missing an appendage. I can't believe how much I rely on a silly phone to get through my daily life. But I need access to twitter so I can follow the news, weather and traffic in my area. I need the Facebook App to keep up with my friends. I need the calculator, the tip calculator, the clock, the banking apps...everything that is on there that I use regularly. To think, 3 years ago the iPhone was a fairly new gadget and I swore I didn't need a phone that would do anything more than text and make phone calls. Now I do just about everything with my phone.

Administrative Note: I received several comments about not being able to comment without creating a blog or logging in. I have updated the blog settings so that should no longer be necessary. Please let me know if you have any issues posting comments. Thanks!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

A Family Dog

One thing I realized I hadn't mentioned was how Maverick was adjusting to having two new people living in his house.  Since my divorce, Maverick has been the "man" of the house and took his job of protecting me very seriously.  The Sheriff was concerned about how Kiddo would react to Maverick, especially since Maverick is basically the same size as Kiddo.  He was pretty scared of Mav at first because Mav tends to be a little hyper and doesn't know the difference between 0 and 60.  Kiddo has never had dogs as pets.  His mom owns a couple of cats but everyone who has owned a cat knows, cats would typically rather leave you alone while dogs just want love from their humans.  I was worried that Maverick would be jealous or protective and wouldn't react well to having the Sheriff and Kiddo in the house.  However, I was wrong (and should have known better).  Maverick has loved having two extra people to take care of him and give him love.  Fortunately he is an extremely friendly dog so my biggest concern should have been trying to lick everyone to death.  All in all, we are just one big happy family living the suburban dream.  It's actually kind of sickening.  :)

Friday, November 12, 2010

Date Night!

Our church hosts Parents' Night Out once a month and tonight was the night.  The Sheriff and I always take advantage of this because we don't get a lot of time alone thanks to his odd work hours.  Even tonight we had to cut the evening short because he was off to work around 9.  We headed to the Melting Pot for dinner this evening because we had a coupon and stuffed ourselves silly.  The food was amazing.  They are featuring a French themed fondue right now and we selected the special.  I highly recommend the White Chocolate Creme Brulee fondue for dessert.  I don't even like white chocolate and this was the best dessert fondue I have ever eaten there.  I would list Melting Pot high on my list of favorite places to eat.  The meal at the Melting Pot usually takes close to 2 hours to complete so I was worried about being rushed to get the Sheriff off to work and for me to pick up Kiddo.  However, tonight we were able to finish in less than 2 hours and had a little time to kill before we had to head to the church.  It was nice to have some quiet time just the two of us.  That is probably what I would say is the hardest part about our situation.  Newlyweds typically get a couple of years of alone time before kids are in the picture and they have to figure out how to juggle both.  We already have the kid and somehow we have to squeeze in alone time between both our jobs, all of our activities, and make sure Kiddo is taken care of.  We definitely struggle with having enough time alone but we work hard to make it happen as often as possible.  So I am truly grateful to our church for providing us with the opportunity to have some time alone.  Tonight was wonderful...good food, great atmosphere and wonderful company.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Veterans' Day

Veterans' Day is a day set aside to remember those who have served in our Armed Forces and have fought to protect our freedom. I have watched my brother deploy three and we have been lucky enough to have him return home safely every time. One of the local radio personalities reads the following poem every year and I thought I would share it with you.

What is a Veteran?

Some veterans bear visible signs of their service: a missing limb, a jagged scar, a certain look in the eye. Others may carry the evidence inside them: a pin holding a bone together, a piece of shrapnel in the leg – or perhaps another sort of inner steel: the soul’s ally forged in the refinery of adversity. Except in parades, however, the men and women who have kept America safe wear no badge or emblem. You can’t tell a vet just by looking. He is the cop on the beat who spent six months in Saudi Arabia sweating two gallons a day making sure the armored personnel carriers didn’t run out of fuel. He is the barroom loudmouth, dumber than five wooden planks, whose overgrown frat-boy behavior is outweighed a hundred times in the cosmic scales by four hours of exquisite bravery near the 38th parallel. She – or he – is the nurse who fought against futility and went to sleep sobbing every night for two solid years in Da Nang. He is the POW who went away one person and came back another – or didn’t come back AT ALL. He is the Quantico drill instructor who has never seen combat – but has saved countless lives by turning slouchy, no-account rednecks and gang members into Marines, and teaching them to watch each other’s backs. He is the parade – riding Legionnaire who pins on his ribbons and medals with a prosthetic hand. He is the career quartermaster who watches the ribbons and medals pass him by. He is the three anonymous heroes in The Tomb Of The Unknowns, whose presence at the Arlington National Cemetery must forever preserve the memory of all the anonymous heroes whose valor dies unrecognized with them on the battlefield or in the ocean’s sunless deep. He is the old guy bagging groceries at the supermarket – palsied now and aggravatingly slow – who helped liberate a Nazi death camp and who wishes all day long that his wife were still alive to hold him when the nightmares come. He is an ordinary and yet an extraordinary human being – a person who offered some of his life’s most vital years in the service of his country, and who sacrificed his ambitions so others would not have to sacrifice theirs. He is a soldier and a savior and a sword against the darkness, and he is nothing more than the finest, greatest testimony on behalf of the finest, greatest nation ever known. So remember, each time you see someone who has served our country, just lean over and say Thank You. That’s all most people need, and in most cases it will mean more than any medals they could have been awarded or were awarded. Two little words that mean a lot, “THANK YOU”.

“It is the soldier, not the reporter, Who has given us freedom of the press. It is the soldier, not the poet, Who has given us freedom of speech. It is the soldier, not the campus organizer, Who has given us the freedom to demonstrate. It is the soldier, Who salutes the flag, Who serves beneath the flag, and whose coffin is draped by the flag, who allows the protestor to burn the flag.”

Father Denis Edward O’Brien/USMC

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

I Almost Forgot!

Apparently balancing my checkbook had me so consumed that I almost forgot to blog today.  I committed to 30 days so I am going to do 30 days.  I had planned to write about the crazy fog driving in to work this morning.  I can't believe how bad it has been the last couple of days since DST.  I thought the drive would be easier when it wasn't pitch black out but the fog is worse.  The Sheriff has warned me it will get worse.  I also debating writing about how our gas bill has doubled this last month since I have started commuting.  That is killing me!  Instead I am going to babble on for a few minutes because I really don't have any thing interesting to say.  So...there you have it.  My feeble attempt at blogging this evening just to be able to check the box.  Sorry, readers.  I promise to do better tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Commuting

I mentioned recently that my company relocated to a new building about 20 miles away from our previous location which increased my commute from 10 miles to 33 miles.  This isn't the longest I have ever had to commute but it has been a while since I had to make a long drive to work.  My longest commute, from Killeen to NW Austin, was nearly 60 miles and only lasted 6 weeks since I was in the process of moving to Austin.  I am one of those people who likes to live in close proximity to everything I do, especially work.  I knew the drive to Austin was temporary which is why I was willing to make it.  I was relieved when I settled in my apartment 4 miles away and only had to do 2 u-turns to get to work instead of taking the highways and toll roads.  This new commute has been rough getting used to.  I take the toll way to get to the office because it cuts down on the traffic and is an overall faster route to the new location but it is expensive.  Also, since this toll way is fairly new, there isn't much along it so I better have a full tank of gas and pray that I don't break down since there isn't anywhere to stop along the way.  The Sheriff's work schedule also limits my choices on when I can arrive and leave work as well as increases the need to travel faster.  Daylight Savings Time ending has done wonders for my commute though.  The last month found me leaving my house at 0 dark 30 when it is still pitch black outside.  I would literally watch the sun come up as I made my way to the office each morning.  That was actually kind of cool.  On the flip side, I would still have a couple of hours of daylight left when I headed home.  The time change brings the opposite effect.  The sun is shining when I leaving for work and I get to watch the sun set on my home.  Fortunately I am driving north so I am not blinded by the setting sun.  I definitely prefer this commute to what I experienced this past month.  With it dark outside when I was leaving for work, it was harder to wake up and get going to safely commute.  I would stroll at the door with coffee in my hand and my heavily lidded eyes would finally perk up a bit about half down the 130 toll way.  I even tweeted that tired was my new normal because I felt like I just couldn't get enough rest (of course blogging at 10:15 doesn't help).  The better mornings definitely help me get going a little bit better in the mornings.  Who knows...I might even be able to stop taking the coffee with me soon.  On second thought...not so much!  

Monday, November 8, 2010

Ugh...Exercise

So I am cheating tonight because I am tired and I can't get the creative juices flowing. I know it is only day two but the end of Daylight Savings Time is kicking my butt. I passed out on the couch last night watching Pirates of the Caribbean. I nearly jumped out of my skin when the Sheriff suggested we go to bed and then I was out again in about two seconds once my head hit the pillow. Maverick even put himself to bed last night because he was so tired. I don't think it helped that we spent most of the weekend cleaning. And by cleaning, I mean moving furniture to sweep and mop behind it before we laid down our new rug in the living room. With the living room and dining room being conjoined we can't clean one without the other. And then the kitchen had to come next because we needed dishes to eat off of and well before we knew it we were almost done with the whole house. And worn out. (and I wrote a lot of ands there but it's my blog and I say it's OK!) So back to my original point which is that I am cheating and using a blog prompt because I couldn't think of anything to write about. (You never would have guessed that from the previous paragraph either!)

What's one thing that you know you SHOULD do for your health that you just can't seem to make happen? And why is it so hard?

That is an easy one. I need to lose weight. I weighed myself recently and I was very upset at what the number was and I know I need to do something to change it. I know I need to watch my diet a little closer and I need to exercise and that is where the problem comes in. I just cannot seem to stick to an exercise routine. I have joined gyms, fitness programs, women only workouts, you name it. But I just can't seem to find something that works for me. For one, I have other things I would rather be doing with my time than spending it working out. I don't get a high from it. I don't enjoy it. To me it is a tedious task that I must suffer through. I blame it on the fact that I never had to worry about my weight when I was younger. But then I was dancing as many as 5 days a week so I was exercising regularly. I just didn't realize it at the time. Once I quit dancing in college and continued to age, the lack of movement took its toll and now more than 10 years later here I am. So now to find a routine that works for me and my family and doesn't cost a fortune so I can see that dreadful number lower to a more decent range.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Challenges

Tonight was H.Y.M.N at Awana at church.  We didn't go.  H.Y.M.N. stands for Honor Your Mother Night.  I had been thinking about this night ever since we got the Awana calendar.  I wasn't sure how to approach it or what Kiddo would think.  The Sheriff and I hadn't discussed it so I assumed he thought we would just go and not think anything of it.  The truth was I knew it would be a rough night for me.  I am not Kiddo's mother and I get subtle reminders of that on a regular basis.  Kiddo also frequently tells anyone who mentions his mother that she is far away.  Usually the people are referring to me because they have no way of knowing that I am actually the step mother.  So then I get a strange look from the person who made the original comment and have to explain our situation to a complete stranger.  I didn't want to go to church on a night that was focused on mothers and risk hearing Kiddo tell everyone that his Mommy wasn't there.  The Sheriff asked me what I was thinking about going tonight and left the decision up to me.  He understood my concerns about the evening and didn't want me in a position where I would be uncomfortable.  I knew I would have some friends there and that it probably would have been OK but I just couldn't bear the thought.  I am probably being a tad selfish or melodramatic about all this but this full-time step mother business is hard.  I have all the responsibility of being Kiddo's mom but I get none of the reward from it.  Just tonight the Sheriff was helping Kiddo write an email to his mom and he was so excited about sending the letter to her.  All I can think is that there will never be anyone who will hold me in the same regard as a child does its mother.  It just makes me sad.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Typical Saturday

"Some people think football is a matter of life and death.  I assure you, it's much more serious than that."  ~ Bill Shankly

I am a woman who loves college football.  In most places, that is rare unless you are from the South. Southern women know as much if not more about their team of choice as well as all of their opponents.  Men are surprised when they start chatting me up about football because I am actually pretty knowledgeable on the subject.  Someone made the comment to me while I was waiting in line at Kohl's yesterday that football was the new religion.  I turned to him and said you must not be from the South because if you were you would already know that football is religion.  This comment came after a conversation with his buddy about the Alabama shirt I was wearing.  Sure enough the guy confirmed that he was in deed from California.  You see...college football is a whole different beast when you leave the South.

That being said today started out like any Saturday in the fall.  I was up and had the TV on in time for ESPN GameDay to start.  But that is where my day changed.  For some reason, I wasn't really interested in the early games so I opted for some made for TV movies instead.  I flipped the channel in time to watch Alabama games versus LSU at 2:30.  Truthfully, I wasn't too worried about this game because I felt that LSU's team wasn't that good.  They were just lucky.  Les Miles had made some poor decisions but the team still managed to pull out wins over everyone but Auburn so far.  Needless to say, I was extremely disappointed in Alabama's performance on the field this evening.  While I don't think they played any worse than LSU did, they just didn't seem into the game.  It was almost like they were defeated when they walked onto the field.  So, the day ended with our second loss of the season.  I am still proud of my team but I am hoping they can hold it together better over the next few weeks.  We still have to face an undefeated Auburn in the Iron Bowl the day after Thanksgiving.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Follow Up

A couple of my friends commented on my Christmas post on Facebook which made me realize there were a couple more things I wanted to say on the subject.  I believe that I can thank my mom for being such a planner.  I remember watching her run around like crazy the last few days leading up to Christmas and staying up all night to get everything wrapped and under the tree.  This was all before cell phones and she would be gone all day with no way for us to contact her or know when she would be home.  She was exhausted on Christmas day and that lead to a lot of frustration and annoyance in our household.  My mom's procrastination caused me to not have a spontaneous bone in my body.  Everything has to planned and detailed so that I know when it is going to happen.

On that note, I am hosting Thanksgiving for the Sheriff's family at my house this year.  That means I have been picking out recipes and planning out the layout of the food and how everything is going to be cooked.  I have hosted Thanksgiving before but I have cheated using pre-made food that just needed heating to make the meal easier for me.  That means that I am really going to have my hands full trying to complete the meal while keeping Kiddo occupied and the Sheriff sleeps.  It should make for an interesting day.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Annoyed

I spent most of my day being annoyed today.  It started last night after I got home from dinner with the Sheriff.  I got a text when I was leaving work that they were doing work on the road in front of my house.  It should be a problem for me to get into our driveway but it was just a head's up.  Apparently a water pipe in front of a neighbor's house busted and they were repairing it.  They had been working for several hours already when I arrived home because Maverick had to be left in his room so he wouldn't keep barking at the noise outside.  We were fortunate to have a night to ourselves without Kiddo thanks to his grandmother so we decided to go on a date.  When we returned home around 8:30, they were still working on the road.  An hour later I could still hear them out there and so could Mav and he was letting me know it.  At 10:15, still there.  All the while I was worried about Kiddo waking up from the noise because it was right outside his bedroom window.  At 11, I was in bed and could still hear them working outside.  Maverick was agitated and, while he wasn't barking, it took him a while to get settled which meant it took me a while to get to sleep.  So, yes, I was annoyed.  Because I went to bed annoyed, I woke up annoyed and that just carried over to me being annoyed most of the day.  And when I am annoyed, my patience and tolerance runs thin.  At least I was aware of it and was able to warn the Sheriff before I got home.  Fortunately, when I got home, no one was working on the street.  Tomorrow should be a better day.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Christmas

It is that time of year where I start to panic about Christmas gifts for my family.  I know most people don't worry about Christmas until Black Friday or later but I am not one of those people.  I am way too much of a planner to wait that long to shop.  I have been known in the past to start shopping for Christmas as early as July.  That has not been the case this year.  I do, however, have a plan of attack for the majority of my family.  My oldest brother and his wife are always a little difficult but I am sure I will figure them out.  The sheriff's family is different story.  I have no idea where to begin with them.  Plus I am shopping for the Kiddo this year.  That is fun and stressful all within itself.  I want to make sure he has a nice Christmas but I don't want to go overboard at the same time.  He does have 3 sets of grandparents and his mom to buy gifts for him on top of what we are getting.

Christmas is going to be very different for me this year.  This is the first year I will be at my own house on Christmas morning celebrating with my own family instead of sitting in the living room at Mom and Dad's.  I missed Christmas one year when I was married to the ex and he insisted we spend the holiday with his family.  We did head home the day after Christmas to celebrate with my crew but it still made me sad not to be home on Christmas morning.  My parents decided long before I was born that we would be in our own house on Christmas morning rather than somewhere else.  When my brother had kids, he decided to follow the same pattern.  I have always known that it would do the same thing when I had my own family.  That doesn't mean it isn't going to be tough on me.  I am sure it will be fun playing Santa for Kiddo but I know I am going to miss being home.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Day 2

OK...so I am cheating a bit today. I am relying on a blog prompt on day two mostly because I don't have the time to try to be creative today. I mentioned in yesterday's post that time constraints are going to be the biggest limiting to factor for me completing an entire month of blogging. Well, Tuesday is my busiest day both at work and at home. I have several deadlines for customer requirements that are due on Tuesdays and our small group from church meets Tuesday nights. I don't even get to go home first before small group. I just head straight there and pick up food on the way. Needless to say, I spend most of Tuesday run around like a chicken with my head cut off. Today is of course no better than normal when you add in two additional meetings and handing out packets to the Race for the Cure participants. So I am going to use a prompt I stole from the NaBloPoMo page that is actually one I could write about for hours.

What is the first play you ever saw live?
Well, that is a surprisingly tough question for me to answer. I don't remember which play/musical I saw first live. I am sure I was taken to one on a school field trip but I can't tell you what it was. I remember going to the ballet as a child. I started dancing when I was 5 so being around the stage and productions were nothing out of the ordinary for me. What I can tell you about was seeing my first show on Broadway. I was 17 and a senior in high school. I was in New York because I was going to be in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade and they took us to see Phantom of the Opera. By the time, I saw the show I had nearly worn out my cassette tape of the Phantom highlights. I knew the songs and had visualized the show in my head a million times. But sitting in the Majestic Theatre watching the story unfold before my eyes was better than I could have ever imagined. It was at that point that I knew theatre would always be a part of my life. I really wanted to be on stage but I doubted my talents and was afraid I was too old to receive the training I needed to become a star. Instead, I took roles where I could find them even if it meant being the nameless dancer in the back corner just so I could get the thrill of performing for an audience. It has been years since I have been on stage and I miss it daily. I would love the opportunity to be a part of a show again if my schedule would allow it. However, I have yet to find a place in Austin where I can plug in my talents. Since that first visit to Broadway, I have been back several times and I have season tickets to Broadway series in Austin. I have seen more than 20 shows and I know the words to hundreds of Broadway show tunes (not that I would let anyone hear me sing them). Theatre is one of the great loves of my life. Some might say I have grease paint in my veins.

Monday, November 1, 2010

So It Begins

November is finally here and that means so is NaBloPoMo.  Ever since I committed myself to this, I have been wondering what I got myself into.  I love writing.  I love having a blog.  On any given day, I probably have 2 or 3 posts running around in my head.  The writing portion isn't the hard part.  Finding time to write the stuff in my head is.  I just flipped my calendar at work over to November and it is deceiving.  My weeks look uneventful.  My days not busy.  But they don't tell the true tell of my life.  I have always been one of those people who is happiest when I am busy.  I don't like having down time because I feel like I should be doing something important, not just sitting around.  But then, I am exhausted when I do get a moment's break so my house doesn't get cleaned, my clothes don't get washed, and I am frustrated by the state of everything around me.  The truth is the calendar in my office hasn't been updated yet.  The one on my phone and the one at my house tell the truth.  They show days filled with activities and holidays on the horizon.  Even this morning, I, the one who remembers everything, forgot that we have plans to meet my brother and his wife for dinner this evening.  How did that happen?  It wasn't on the calendar.  So, faithful readers, bear with me as I attempt to make it through an entire month blogging every day.  I don't want to let you down nor do I want to let myself down.  If I miss a day, comment...let me know that I have been missed.  Scold me.  I need to hear!  I want to be held accountable to this endeavor.  With that said, day 1 is done.  29 more to go!