About Me

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I have been a stay at home mom since Oct 31st 2006. My children started school in 2008, so I decided it was time for me to go back, too. I have been a full time student for over two years now, and it seems like I am learning about more than just my schoolwork.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

I am not a dieter...

...so when I picked this book, Let's Do Lunch, from booksneeze.com, I was not at all sure what to expect.

Since I have never read a book like this before, I'm not sure what is "typical" for a diet/weight loss book. But if this is what they are all like, I will probably never read another one again. The introduction and first chapter read like a brochure. These chapters were all about why you should follow this plan and how wonderful it was, with a few success stories thrown in to butter you up. These success stories follow you throughout the entire book.

As a notoriously picky eater (just ask my family) the promises on the cover of this book  ("Eating all the CALORIES and CARBS you want to lose weight!" and "...common foods that are already in your house into your body in a way that causes it to shed its unwanted baggage.") looked good to me. Except, Mr. Wilson speaks of throwing food away. Food that was "already in his house." Another thing that bothered me was the authors stress that this was not a fruit diet. More appropriately, this is not a "fruit-only" diet. In the third paragraph of chapter 3, Mr. Wilson tells us, "You need to eat as much fresh fruit--especially the sweetest fruits--as you can possibly tolerate putting into your body each and every day..." Sounds like a fruit diet to me.

With any diet book, there will be some that the program works for, and some that it doesn't. I guess this is one book that will not work for me. I am sure there are others out there that it will work for, however. So I cannot say that I wouldn't recommend this book to anyone, just that I will stress the differences each individual has before telling someone to read it.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010


Music plays a big part in my life. Those songwriters really know how to touch your heart, make you say "I know that feeling!"

I have playlists, cd's, mp3 files, and even cassette tapes with music that tells part of my story. Mixed tapes from my pre-pubescent childhood reflect my siblings and parents preferences. CDs from high school that my friends and I listened to constantly. Country songs I used to swear to hate that I've now grown to love, thanks to my lovely husband. Early Mommy music, full of Mary had a Little Lamb and the ABC's.

Notice how that whole paragraph is filled with other peoples choices. In almost all aspects of my life I find it easier to go along with others decisions. But finally, I feel like I have music that's all my own. It took a lot of growing up, a lot of "I don't care what others say about me", and a lot of reflection. Oh, I know I'm not the only one who likes this music, but it's my choice now, not anyone elses.

My cell phone is an mp3 player, saves me from having to carry around something else in my purse. The radio stations up here don't have a lot of variety, so I listen to my cell phone music driving around. I have the Windows Media Player open on my computer most of the time, playing my favorites while I work. Other times, my playlist.com account is open, belting out tunes. Sometimes it's really easy to get lost in a good song.

Of course, listening to that old music brings back plenty of memories. Testify to Love will always remind me of spending time with my sister, just like Kathy Troccoli will remind me of times spent with both sisters. Hymns remind me of my Mom, along with all the "Mom songs" out there-Thank You Mom by Good Charlotte, Sissy's Song by Alan Jackson. Whenever I hear How Great Thou Art I remember walking with my aunt behind my Mommy's casket at her funeral. The Twist reminds me of Daddy at my parents 25th Anniversary. The music I remember listening to with my brother is ZZTop. Stellar Kart, Overflow, Ever Stays Red, Thousand Foot Krutch, and Sanctus Real are all bands that my bestest friend and I LOVE, and most of them we've even seen in concert. Cowboy Take me Away is how I feel about Mike, and Hole in my Head is an anthem to old boyfriends that a friend and I share. Overflow's Cry on my Shoulder is the song I would sing to Emma if I couldn't find the words she needed to hear. Kenny G brings back special times, just like Jewel reminds me of driving around Phoenix with good friends. Marisy Dotes is a song that Mom sang to me, that I sing to my kids. And my children fall asleep to my--poorly sung--version of Amazing Grace.

Maybe that's why I like music so much, it helps remind me of times I may otherwise forget. Whatever the reason, music is part of who I am, my portal to another time and place. Pushing play brings peace to my world.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

The start of another semester

School starts today. For me, I mean. The kids started last week. My actual classes don't start until Monday, but my internet class has started today. Have I mentioned before that I dislike internet courses? I really like having an instructor there face to face. I struggled with my last class. Unfortunately, this required class is only available via internet. I could have chosen a different class to take--this being a 'pick a 3 credit course from Arts & Humanities'--but I have roots in theater, and decided to get back into it. Except Intro to Theater is not the same intro as in high school.
This is more of a History of Theater. Which is not what I expected, but it sounds fun. So, I will try the internet class one more time. Who knows, it may grow on me.
I am also taking business math. Let me tell you how much that terrifies me. I am no good at math. AND I am so worried about losing my 4.0 over this stupid course, that as soon as I got my book, I started working on the exercises. The first chapter is basic addition and subtraction, and I'm already having problems with it. Of course, the problems I am struggling with use millions and billions, but it's still sad that I am having such a hard time. 
After school starts, girl scouts starts again. Emma is bridging to Brownies this weekend. I still have my uniform, so she's going to wear it. She's also going to have a new sash with some of my old patches on it. I decided to recycle and save some money. Although it didn't really matter, I had $10 worth of gift certificates for the girl scout shop. Instead of patches, however, I decided to buy her a cute pair of leggings that she can wear under some of her skirts.
The kids are outside playing right now, having gotten ready for school 40 minutes early. I think I'm going to go throw some balls with them.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

A Comedy of Errors

Yesterday, there was a hummingbird catch, tag, & release, along with lectures, displays, specialists, and a whole bunch of other stuff. We decided to go. Which was our mistake. It's about an hour drive to the reserve where the event was going on. My mother-in-law, the kids, and I got up early, and left for the wildlife preserve at 6:30 a.m. Forty-five minutes later, we cleared the open, empty range, and hit town limits. Coming down the hill, into town, the car decided to die on us. Still another 15+ miles from the event.

This has happened before, and usually the car needs to sit and rest a while before she decides to start up again. So we decided to sit where we were (at the entrance to an RV park) and wait it out. Except the car did not want to start. Well, it wanted to, but it didn't. With cars whizzing past us, (no one stopped until we had finished) Emma steered while the grown ups pushed, and we moved the car about 3/4 mile down the road to a gas station. Or, at least, what we thought was a gas station. The kids had to go to the bathroom, so we walked up to the doors to see nothing but a mop bucket in the building. ABSOLUTELY NOTHING...

After determining that my lovely husband could not come and rescue us right away, we decided to walk into town. Not entirely sure exactly how far it was, but it was at least a mile. My kids are not walkers. They are whiners.

McDonald's for lunch, the general store for time wasting, and Napa for the price of parts. Three hours later, we notice how dark the sky is getting, and head back to the car to wait for my knight-in-shining-Chevy to arrive with help.

On our way back, we discovered wild watermelon plants with baby watermelon growing on the side of the road. Deciding to kill more time, we found things we could use to dig up some smaller plants, and unearthed 3 small watermelon vines. The kids had fun digging for worms, getting muddy, and playing with roly-poly bugs. After this, we sat in the car as a monsoon storm rolled our way. Leaning the front seats all the way back, Emma and Rob gave Nancy and I 'makeovers', manicures, and massages.

Once the storm passed, the kids started getting antsy, so we let them run around the parking lot while the adults sat in the car, solving crossword puzzles and laughing at the other motorists who made the same mistake we did in assuming the gas station was operational. An hour before Mike got there, a police officer finally decides to show up and see if we need help. No, thank you...WHERE WERE YOU THIS MORNING??

I don't know if you've seen "It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World", but it's the original (1963) to the more recent (2001) adaptation, "Rat Race." Anyhow, there's a scene where actor Dick Shawn is in a hurry to save his 'Mama', played by Ethel Merman, from horrible circumstances. I had visions of my husband driving just like this to get to us.

As I was sharing this thought with my MIL, who shows up, but Mike himself! We got the car loaded on the trailer he brought, stopped to go to the bathroom one last time, and headed home. Twelve hours after we left that morning.

Thank God we were close enough to town to walk. If we had been even 2 miles back, there's no telling what would have happened. As it was, there was a reason we didn't make it to the hummingbird thing. Who knows what it was, but we still had fun.