Monday, February 21, 2011

Facing My Addictions

It was an interesting weekend.  Very odd.  Not sure what to think of it.  So, don't really expect any of this to make too much sense.  I do know that  a) I am not as young as I used to be, b) I love my books, laptop, and Dt. Dr Pepper a little bit more than I should sometimes, and c) I am not as young as I used to be. 

First off, I have been off crack Dt. Dr. Pepper since last Wednesday.  This is a monumental event.  Since my days in college when I would have to be up early for nursing class or for early morning clinical, I would grab a diet soda to go with it.  Even while I was pregnant, I would allow myself just one.  Lately, I would have a 20 ounce Dt. Dr. Pepper on my way to work, on my way home from work, and if we happened to be going out to eat I would have a diet something or other then too.  Just a bit too much aspartame and caffeine, ya think?  So far I have been surviving with water.  Granted, I've been buying bottled water, but thought that would make the whole bottle to mouth transition a little easier.  Needless to say, I have been sleeping much better.

Except when I have books I NEED to read.  I made the mistake of purchasing the last two books of  The Hunger Games.  I started Catching Fire late Friday evening.  I did manage to control myself and went lights out at about 1 AM.  I finished it the next evening and had to start Mockingjay - at least the first chapter or so I told myself. One chapter turned to two and so on and so forth until about four in the morning.  By five in the morning we had "thunder ice" and Maren was crawling in bed with me.  The thunder ice was kind of surreal.  Lightning, thunder, rain, hail, ice pellets and a little dusting of snow.  So strange for February.  I felt like I was in the arena at the Hunger Games.  But maybe I was just a little sleep deprived.  Excellent books though.

We didn't make it to church Sunday because of the ice, or so I told myself. Actually I wanted to sleep since I had had so little of it the night before.  I left my laptop on the little side table by my recliner in front of the TV in my office.  I told Princess Maren mommy needed to take a little nap and like any good mother would, popped in Toy Story 3 to keep her occupied.  Wasn't long before I heard a loud crash (Hunger Games arena again?) which happened to be my laptop hitting the floor. Maren had gotten her foot caught in the power cord and pulled it off the table. The screen had shattered, but it still turned on.  I got the sickest feeling that all our pictures were gone for good, and why hadn't I down loaded them to a web site for safe keeping?  So I hooked up my computer to our TV through the HDMI cable and everything else seems to be in working order. Now I have new office (in the living room with the big screen) and a HUGE monitor.

So, I learned a few things this weekend.  Water really does taste pretty good.  Lack of sleep makes for poor choices the next day. Books really can wait until tomorrow. Shattered laptop screens are not nearly as important as your girls shattered heart because she broke her momma's favorite toy.  She felt so bad.  Organizing and storing your photos probably shouldn't wait until tomorrow.  I'm working on it in my brand spanking new office.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


182 stringed instruments.  Some of them had only been played for a mere 6 weeks.  My expectations were low.  Sweet Marissa told me they sounded "AWESOME" at their rehearsal, but this coming from the mouth of an ever hyperbolic tween, I couldn't help but think of that saying "like cats in a roomful of rocking chairs." 182 of them in fact.

See, every three or four years our school system's wonderful strings instructor, the ever patient and long-suffering Mrs. Haverdink, takes on a feat of mammoth proportions.  She teaches the elementary strings, middle school, all the way on up to high school, a selection which the kids perform in one mass orchestra event.  This year they performed Orpheus in the Underworld - Finale by Jacques Offenbach, AKA "the Can-Can."

To answer your question, yes, they can do the can-can, and they did. It was wonderful.  Beautiful. I got all teary-eyed. Unexpectedly.  Maybe it was seeing our girl sitting next to those high school students and knowing that would be her in a few short years.  Maybe it was Maren's visible "spine tingle" and look of amazement she got on that big crescendo. Maybe it was because the Captain was home.  Maybe I'm just happy to be part of a school system that takes their music as seriously as their sports. 

Whatever it might have been, I know the elementary kids and their families were free to leave after the first number, but we didn't.  We stayed and listened to the String Orchestra, the Full Orchestra and the Jazz Band ( who, by the way, just finished first in districts and are now on their way to state).  It was an unexpected treat. Like a 44 degree day in NW Iowa in the middle of February - yup, got one of those too.

So, here's a little Offenbach for you.  Just to get good and stuck in your head for the next few days or so. Marissa has been practicing since late fall.  I know about these things. Enjoy!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

My Funny Valentine

Awhile back when we moved Marissa downstairs, we also moved the Captain and I into the front bedroom and Maren to to the back bedroom.  The front bedroom shares a wall with our TV room and when the girls were in that room we could never stay up and watch a movie at an appreciable volume level without waking them up.  The front bedroom also had a nicer walk-in closet.  Bingo.

The problem with this closet was the way it was organized.  It just had two small, short areas for hang-ups on either of the shorter side walls.  The longer back wall had a shelf, but no place to hang things.  Talk about wasted space.  So finally this weekend, after about a year or so of cursing the mismanaged space, we remedied that situation.  Well, I'll say the Captain mostly remedied that situation.  I would walk in, cough, sneeze, drill a couple holes, look pathetic, cough and go back to sit in my recliner.  Repeat. Looked something like this. Why I am taking pictures of my closet is a little beyond me.  It's what we do here in Iowa in the depths of winter?

Anyway, here's the before: (forgot to take an actual before picture with everything still hanging in the closet, but I'll be darned if I was going to hang them back up again)


And the after.  Isn't it beautiful. And organized. And beautifully organized.  Sometimes I go sit in there and shut the door and quietly talk myself in to thinking that the rest of my life is as such.

Here's the Captain's side.  As seen by his little Captain's hat up on the top shelf.  What a stud.  But do you see that bright purple sleeve hanging there on the left?

Here it is again.  Guess what that sleeve is attached too?


That he bought for himself.  Pretty sure that makes him undateable. He also occasionally wears socks with sandals (black socks even), has a pair of jorts (think I bought them for him), has a cell phone protector on his belt, wears shiny pointy black shoes to work, and owns a speedo (tells me he used to be a "swimmer"). Undateable, and then some.

But, that does make him mighty fine marriage material.  Thanks for the closet, honey!! Thanks for taking care of things when I was/am sick! Have a good trip and see you soon! 

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Perfect Pairings x 3

Well, here it is 4:15 AM, and no sleep in sight.  I long for some uninterrupted sleep, but with this cough/cold /flu/nigh on to dying illness that I've have obtained, it just isn't happening.  So, what are blogs for if not to pass the insomnia time away.

We have had our hands full lately.  Between me trying to get my head around my new job position, the girls random pattern of school days and various snow days, and trying to keep Harry from licking his, well, you know, we have had some busy days.  So, I'll get you up to date and try to add some perfect pairings along the way.

Snow days:  I think all the world has had a snow day as of late, well at least here in the states.  The girls informed me they have make up days scheduled into June.  It's going to be a short summer.  But, snow days make for good sledding days.  Photo credit goes to the Captain - love this shot.

This was almost a good sledding day turned bad though.  Remember a long time ago when I told you about the infamous hill with the creek at the bottom?  Well, let's just say Marissa found the creek. 

She was okay, thank goodness, but I think she has found new meaning to the word "BAIL". 

Perfect Pairing:

Job 37:10
By the breath of God ice is given, and the broad waters are frozen fast.
And speaking of ice, tis the season for ice skating.  The girls are doing their thing again with ice skating lessons.  Surprisingly, they have been able to make it for all of their sessions without any weather cancellations at all.  Seems it only snows on Mondays round these parts. 

They always enjoy the lessons and have improved a lot.  I am glad to see them out and moving this time of year when the winter duldrums set in. 

Perfect Pairing:

Psalm 126:2

Then our mouth was filled with laughter, and our tongue with shouts of joy; then they said among the nations, “The Lord has done great things for them.”

And lest we forget, there is Harry.  Always Harry.  Harry got well, you know, neutered, this past week.  He has had to wear the cone of shame so he doesn't lick his, well, you know, wound.  If you think he was mad at me for the haircut, well ....

....actually, I think we have made up.  I could only stand to see him knock his cone into things for so long, before I had to haul him on my lap and give in to those big brown eyes. 

Pefect Pairing:

Isaiah 56:3
3 Let not the foreigner who has joined himself to the Lord say,
“The Lord will surely separate me from his people”;
and let not the eunuch say,
“Behold, I am a dry tree.”

Well, that's an interesting verse.  Hmmm, but yes, Harry's "dry tree" has healed up rather nicely.

On a more somber note, my dad was admitted to the hospital again the other day.  He has a little pneumonia, a urinary tract infection and a good old sinusitus.  Praying that all these little things don't add up to a big long hospital stay again.  We'll take as many prayers as you can give us.

Head on over to Baloney's for some more perfect pairing action!