What's Being Read the Most...

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Myspace Migration: It's Champagne Thursday

Current mood:energetic
Going to start this post early today, because I've been.so.sleepy.lately!!! I'm excited, today I get to "winter clean" my house. Ok, lest you think I'm some kind of freak, it's not so much that I enjoy the scrubbing of toilets and tubs, I don't - and that's not what I'm doing today, anyway... I like neat. And organized. And I don't feel neat nor organized when I step into my home lately. So, in about 10 minutes (after I throw on some jeans), I'm going to put Roxy in her little travel carrier, and we're going to get some Starbucks. When I get back, I'm throwing out everything that's in the garage. Because, seriously, I've taken it with me on every move since 2000 and I NEVER look at the stuff. I can't need it. It just sits around. So, I'm tossing it!

Then, I'm dealing with the toys. I got all the pre-Christmas toys organized last week, but now we need to find homes for all the new stuff. I want to put a lovesack in the loft and some throw pillows, so I need to find a home for the chairs that are up there. Maybe I'll call Salvation Army today. I've got a gazillion little girl clothes that need to be donated, too. I was going to do this all next week, but I just can't stand it anymore.. so... today. It begins today.

I need to get the yearbook done! My goal was to have it put together before the kids went back to school, but now I'll be happy if we can just get the kids arranged in all their classes.. I realized that we forgot to get the disk we need with all the activities pictures. Whoops!

I can't believe how struck I was by the fact that Gerald Ford died. I wasn't even alive when he was President. In other news, I was kind of cracking up at the fact that the Puget Sound has increased levels of vanilla and cinnamon from all our holiday baking. Check out this article, it was interesting: Holiday Baking Impacts Puget Sound

So, Roxy is really just quite adorable. The kids went over to a friend's to sleep over and she, of course, doesn't know that. She just knows they're not downstairs playing with her and she doesn't like it. So, she keeps going over to the stairs and barking once, then sits down. Waits. Nothing. Comes back to me and leads me to the stairs where she repeats the process. It's soooo cute! She has been a great dog. I'm glad we have her. I hope she's glad we have her after she gets fixed next week!
I purchased some stuff for a fun Champagne Thursday twist: cranberry juice and rasberries to augment the Champagne. It's yumminess! But, it reminds me that New Years is coming up quick... I need to get my plans firmed up! Oh yeah, that reminds me, Bev, please call!! :)

Monday, December 18, 2006

Myspace Migration: And the Countdown Begins

Current mood:blank
We're now officially one week away from Christmas. Which is totally fine by me because I've been done with the shopping aspect of Christmas for aeons. Now wrapping is another story - still lots of that to do. I used to love wrapping - was very meticulous... perfectly wrapped presents with straight creases, no showing tape, perfect bows and present toppers. Now, I'm all about bags. LOL

Had a fun weekend with Bev and my girls. Friday night Bev and I hung out with some rather ... interesting... people and at the very least, it was an experience. An experience where I ended up with some very questionable DVDs in my backseat, and a pool stick from some bar. We've decided they're bad influences, lol... Saturday night we went to the TSO concert. It was very cool; it was the girls' first concert, to boot! Bev, I've got that copy for you - remind me to get it to you next time I see you! I've decided Bev is definitely among my favorite people. I really enjoyed my munchkin time this weekend. I'm going to miss them when they go to their Dad's this week.

Today we're seeing Santa after school/work. This is going to be a light work week for me. I'm taking a half-day Wed., I'm taking Thursday off and Friday is still undecided. Fortunately, it's easier to do at the end of the year.

Ok, so I kind of ranted about this in a bulletin, but seriously, passive-aggressive people drive me bonkers. Say what you mean, mean what you say and don't lead people along by the nose. Now, lest you think I'm talking about a guy, I'm not. I'm actually talking about a girlfriend of mine (though I have definitely known [and still do] guys who would fit the "passive-aggressive" mold). I watch her do/not do all kinds of things while staunchly waving the BS banner of "I don't want to hurt their feelings." Riiiight. Because it will hurt so much LESS when they come to realize that you've seen them for AGES past when you knew you didn't really have feelings for them. THAT won't seem like using them AT ALL. Look, I understand really not wanting to hurt someone else - but there comes a point where you're no longer thinking about how THAT person feels and you're really more focused on how the act of being straight will make YOU feel and what reprocussions it will have for YOU. That's not cool.

I also realize I tend to be on the other end of the spectrum. I know I, more often than not, will take the truth and use it like a spear. But, hey, I'm being honest, right?? Hmm... anyway, so I get that there's a balance. If you have to choose between the two, though; I still think being brutally honest is far better than "sparing someone." I've just seen very few instances where the person that really was being spared was NOT the person that was getting (more or less) lied to - it was the person doing the "sparing." Seems cowardly to me.
Ok. Must get ready for work

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Myspace Migration: Adventures in Wierdness

Current mood:weird
Ok, so it's just kind of been a wierd. Yesterday was a wierd kind of day. First of all, I'm on some wierd sugar kick - typically, not so much into sweet stuff. Lately, I've been all about chocolate... what the heck is wrong with me?? I had to get handmade marshmallows from the bakery next door to our neighborhood so we could have REAL hot chocolate (made by my Tassimo, so not sure how that fits in with the whole 'homemade' thing) and marshmallows. I don't even really like hot chocolate and marshmallows! LOL

And I guess, because I've been working a lot and still kind of getting over being sick, I've been knocking out early. Which is disappointing, because I would have liked to have visited with my brother more than what I've been able to. But, anyway, all I've done is work and sleep for the past week. No insanely late hours singing, blogging, visiting with friends or what have you. So, last night at 1:30, this guy I've gone out with a sum total of once calls me ... total drunk dial. And what do you say to that? "Hey dude, it's Thursday, I'm sleeping and your drunk - call me when it's daylight and you're sober??" Anyway, he went on some wierd kick about how he only needed to be crazy for a little while and he was crazy about me but he only needed to be crazy... anyway, I mouthed off something half-awake about needing to hire a security guard and went back to sleep. He called AGAIN! This time, I turned off the phone. Geesh. It's not even Friday....

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Myspace Migration: Perspectives

Current mood:amused
I was struck today by how different perspectives can be, and both still be right. Not a bad thing - there really is no right or wrong on this - but just different. A friend of mine went out of town today - and I texted this morning asking if they needed a ride to the airport (and from, obviously). Seemed a completely natural thing to ask - to him, it seemed like a completely natural thing NOT to.
His thought? I'm busy, I have a life and a bunch of responsbilities and would probably be too busy - didn't occur to him to ask, probably didn't want to impose. That's actually rather considerate of him.

My thought? Yeah, I'm busy - but that's just what you DO, especially for people you know well or care for. Growing up, we always took friends and neighbors to the airport. A lot of it, I think, was that my parents and their friends were far too frugal to spend $6-$15 per day to have their car stowed away at the airport or at off-site parking. The other part? It's just nice to have someone waiting for you with their car at the doors when you step out of the airport and to just sit back and relax while they taxi you home. Plus, if they're friends or you're close, it's great to be able to see them off and welcome them home! And I guess, because I've always DONE it - it doesn't seem like an imposition to me at all.

Neither one of us are right nor wrong - or rather, I think perhaps we're both right. It's just different perspectives and today, that just struck me funny...
You know what else strikes me funny? This dry cleaner operator thinking they'd make a fabulous Vice President of Property Management. I may make this train of thought into it's own blog later, because Oh.My.Gawd! it's rediculous.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Myspace Migration: Why Did I Do a Monster Posting?!?!?!

Current mood:aggravated
I know better. Seriously, I do. You place an ad for a position and here's what happens. You get every yahoo on the planet that's NOT qualified for the position applying and maybe you get one or two qualified candidates. The other thousand? Laugh material? Irritants? Grrr....

I really feel for people looking for a job. Especially the ones who are unemployed, because there's an aspect of desperation that is just kind of sad. But it doesn't change the fact that at the end of the day, when I'm reading about all your fabulous experience as a GAP Manager when I'm looking for a specific, technical Vice-President who needs about a decade of RELEVANT experience... it doesn't change the fact that I'm going to want to Wring.Your.Neck.For.Wasting.My.Time. Because, seriously, people are not going to hire you for something you're NOT qualified to do. Just doesn't happen that way.

*Sigh* I feel better now. I should go find coffee. Is it wrong that at 9am, I already need a nap??

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Myspace Migration: Weekend Follies

Current mood:chipper
So, the majority of this weekend was spent recouperating my illness of this week. Wow. I was seriously hit with the mother of all head colds! I still have congestion, but I don't feel sick anymore. Which is good, because next week I have the mother of all work weeks! :)

I got the girls the dog for Christmas. We now own a little mop named Roxy (she was already named before we got her). She's 7.4 pounds of incorrectly cut hair, but she's very sweet. She has barked a sum total of once - at me - when I made her go to bed for the night. Once she gave in, though, she was very good and let me sleep until 7am. Which I needed. So, this morning she's getting used to the house and is currently sitting on my lap as I type this. I took her for a walk (in the hopes I could get her to poo - she peed in my backyard, but she won't do the other) - that was fun. Got her little jacket on (the light one, it's not too cold) and her little leash and off we went. To find that this dog hasn't really done walks. I have a little, untrained mop on my hands. But she's cute and we'll keep her.
In other news, I had dinner with Bev at Friday's after I got the puppy. She stayed roasty warm and napped (I wore her out at Petsmart) while I.Got.Carded! Seriously, barring not being able to get in one time at Sherlocks when I had forgotten my license; I never get carded. Looking underage is not something I suffer from. But, Bev being the genius she is, ordered a double shot of vodka and I ordered a cranberry juice and I was in business. LOL We ate SO badly to celebrate her starting on her diet today...

I'm hoping the dog will let me get this house clean - I think I've got company coming over this evening. I'm going to see Holiday with Jackie while Roxy gets groomed this morning. Then I'm catching up on some work this afternoon. My life is just so thrilling! :)

Myspace Migration: And A Very Merry To You!

Current mood:calm
The girls loved Roxy. Seriously, I can't blame them. She's an adorable dog. Right now, she's in bed. Hopefully, she's cool being there even though I'm not. Between the girls getting their big Holiday gift and wrapping presents this afternoon, I'm very much in the holiday spirit.

I'm not big on getting gifts. They make me feel odd, most of the time - like a gangly teen that hasn't quite grown into their limbs. Over the years, I've learned to appropriately deal with them, but I still enjoy giving them far more than getting them. There's no real rhyme or reason with my gift-giving, either. Oh, to be sure there are the obligatory gifts that are always purchased - for parents, siblings, Grandma and the like. There are my children's gifts, which I can't wait to purchase each year (I L-O-V-E kid toys), and then there are the other gifts. Some friends, it goes without saying that I'll get them something - there will always be something under Jackie's tree, for example. But most of the time, whether or not I get someone something is dependent on whether or not something struck me.

Example: I wrapped a gift for someone this evening that I knew I was going to purchase months ago. The only thing that would preclude them from getting their gift would be them not being in my life anymore. I knew what I wanted to purchase them, I wanted them to have it, and so they will. However, there are a couple of other people I'm fond of, but nothing has really stood out at me (nor come to mind) to get them. So, I'd be purchasing something just for the sake of purchasing it and that doesn't seem very cool to me. Is that odd??

On another note, a girlfriend and I were talking about relationships this evening. Every relationship you're in is either moving forward or moving backwards. However, because they are organic states of being, they can't sit still - they stagnate, thus receding (moving backwards). Interesting theory. How does that work in practical application, I wondered? How does that apply to my own dating life? How slow of a pace can you take and still be "moving forward??" I don't really have an answer to this, but I don't wholly disagree. I think at some point, you're sharing space and time more than you're sharing a relationship. The example that comes to mind is I dated a really great guy over the summer. Truly, might be one of the better men I've met in the last few years. We went out several times; but, we never really achieved any real intimacy... I never really felt like I knew him the way you know someone you're in a relationship with. So, though there was time, there was no moving forward. At least, not that I could see.

And then there are those that you'd like to move forward with, but don't know how. What signs do you give? Who gives them? That's the trouble with being a chick - I never know if I'm supposed to sit back and go with the flow or be agressive - it's not like business. Oh well, I'll figure it out or I won't...life will go on quite merrily either way.

By the way, Brokeback Mountain is depressing. Beyond the fact that it was hard to engage in a story about gay cowboys,it was just REALLY sad. For every character in it. Except for maybe the grocery store guy that ended up being Alma's second husband. He seemed to fare pretty well. I'm tired. Time for bed. And I have a ton of candles to blow out still. Night ya'll. :)

Wednesday, December 6, 2006

Myspace Migration: Puppies, Pampered Princess, & Pain

Current mood:sick
Not sure if there will be a Champagne Thursday tonight. Still sooooooo under the weather. I have purchased a small pharmacy's worth of medication and am hoping that'll help. Right now, all the fluid in my head is on the left side and the pressure is making me see spots in my left eye. Can you say 'No Bueno?' It's causing a little bit of pain. Thank goodness for the Pampered Princess routine!
The Pampered Princess routine is something I came up with several years ago to mitigate stress and take some time for myself - juggling a screwed-up marriage, children, school, and work was kind of all-consuming. The name is kind of a joke, because at first I felt guilty for spending thirty minutes just on me. But, over time, I got over it and the name stuck. It's 30 minutes of taking a quick shower (you shouldn't bathe dirty, it's not good) so you can pop on a facial scrub/masque and then just chill in the tub for 15 minutes. No thinking about stuff, no working on issues - just me, hot water, a million bubbles, a bunch of candles and some music. It was awesome. I carried on that ritual after the divorce because it really was good for me. My way of meditating, I suppose. :p In fact, I did it daily up until about a month ago.

Interestingly enough (at least to me) that was when my stress level started increasing. Think there's a correlation?? LOL I didn't even notice I had stopped doing it. But, with being sick, it's what sounded good - spending my conscious kid-free time alternating between the shower and the tub (when you're sick, get some shower soothers, they rock and Tea and Sympathy bath bombs from Lush are de-vine). And that's when I realized it really had been awhile since the Pampered Princess routine had been routine. I'm instituting it again; because although I feel like crud, I am oddly at peace. :)

PTA General Meeting tonight and I've got to talk about the yearbook. Fun, fun. Tried to get out of it because I'm sick and I feel like crud - but, I was told the agenda has already been printed and my name's on it. So, I'll shlub up there, I guess. Shouldn't take more than 2 minutes to say what I need to say, anyway. LINDSEY'S FIRST CHOIR CONCERT IS TONIGHT!!! :) :) :) :) I'm so excited for her.
Sooooo... the kids want a puppy. I've gone back and forth on this. I want one for them (and me), too - but.. it's a pretty big commitment. I had pretty much decided this wasn't the right time .. and then Roxy showed up. We have the opportunity to purchase a Shih-Tsu who's been VERY well taken care of for a fraction of what we should pay for her. With all her stuff, toys, bed, crate, medication.. and so on. Good deal, they don't shed, and she's already crate trained. *Sigh* I'm going to see her Saturday. It WOULD be a kick-butt Christmas present for the kids.

I'll write more later if I end up doing Champagne Thursday (which, given the fact that I'm on meds is probably NOT a good idea)...

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Myspace Migration: Oh My Goodness, My Hair!!

Current mood:shocked
I'm in shock. It's good... I think. Yeah, I got bangs. Sort-of. My stylist, Shelby, said they're "side-swept" bangs, which aren't REALLY the same as getting bangs. I guess. Anyway, as this is the first time in 15 years that I've had ANYTHING remotely resembling bangs, I'm in shock. But, I'm told they look good and worse case scenario, in two months it'll be the same length as my first tapered layer. So, we'll see. :)
It's COLD - or, it's going to be. I'm so happy!! Ok.. more later, I guess. My hair smells really good and is soft.. so, that's a bonus. Here's some pics:

Not a great picture (neither are, really); but, here's an idea of thebangs.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Myspace Migration: Back Up & Running... Sorta

Current mood:cheerful
Well, I have a semi- functional computer so I'm back online. I have a list mile long of topics I want to blog about (1). It's been an interesting week or so. I've been texting my friends programmed into my text message list with my major updates (2) and everything else has just been added to the list. Thanksgiving was quiet since the girls were with their Dad and I did shop on Black Friday. In truth, I think I single-handedly supported the US economy! LOL I had a loaner Durango while they were putting the DVD player into the Pacifica and I filled that sucker up twice with stuff. *Sigh* But, I'm basically done shopping, so that's good.

I got my decorations up. Will put up pictures as soon as I reload all the stuff for my phone onto my laptop. I hung lights outside for the first time ever - basically BY MYSELF! Yay! And, they're cute (3). The tree was a total undertaking. I have a new pre-wired tree that had both clear and multi-colored lights. I'm not personally a fan of multi-colored lights on my tree. I like clear lights. So, I had to strip off the pre-wiring so I could extract the colored lights and then add more clear lights so it met my liking. I now have 2100 clear lights on my tree. It's beautiful.

More later. It's kid time.

(1) Like that's a suprise to anyone - and Yes, I will be breaking it into different posts for those with ADD :)

(2) Like how my outdoor lights look, or pics of the SUV I filled up, or my beautiful tree!! :)

(3) It's not completely symmetrical, which bugs me a bit, but given that's the first time I've EVER had to do it, I'm ok with it.

Myspace Migration: Buying Signs

Next topic on the list! :) From last week:
So, I had a date last Friday. No big news there; I go out fairly regularly ... I'm single, right?? LOL Anyway, as I'm sitting in a REALLY comfy chair sipping on my coffee; I concede my mind drifts from the conversation at hand to buying signs (1).
When we're making a major purchase, there's typically a dedicated salesman/woman involved. Why? Because they're needing to analyze the transaction and our actions for "buying signs." Little tells to show we're hooked, we're interested. In reality, you can find these little signals in pretty much every interaction between people. For me, I look for a few constants:

1) body language - mirroring and matching is a pretty natural tell. If you're comfortable in a situation, and enjoying yourself, you will naturally mirror (or match) the body language of the person you're interacting with. So, if I'm kicked back and my date is sitting up straight with their arms crossed - bad sign. However, if he's leaned back and I'm relaxed - good sign - there's mirroring there.

2) ease of conversation - when you're enjoying yourself, conversation tends to flow. If you're having to constantly keep the conversation from straining or are fervently trying to carry one along, that's a signal that one or both of you aren't buying.

3) "Personal Space" - I forget what psychologist talked about 18 inches of personal space, but a major buying sign is when that 18 inches ISN'T observed. Now, this doesn't mean they have to be all up in your face; quite the contrary. What it does mean is that the 18 inches of personal space reserved for casual acquaintances/strangers is no longer observed. That 18 inches creates a ring of privacy during interactions with those whom we are not intimate with. So, to ignore that space and get a little closer is usually a good buying sign.

4) Lingering. Let's face it, if you're having a good time.... you don't really want it to end. So, if you're with someone who can't wait to get the heck out of the car (or can't wait for you to); chances are they're just not that into you. Personally, I look to see if a date lingers when it's time to go.

Now, in his case, I was thinking about the buying signs between dates. If you've ever read the 5 Love Languages, what I'm about to say will make all kinds of sense. If you haven't, you should. It's a fantastic book. Anyway, I'm a Quality Time girl with a secondary language of Words of Affirmation. For me, Conversation hits both my primary and secondary languages. If you're taking the time to call me, I'm pretty happy because that does count as quality time for me and it's conversation. But, (maybe this is high maintainence), if I haven't heard from you in three or four days I'm probably going to question your interest. I won't be mad, I won't gripe... but, in the back of my mind I'm probably going to be wondering what's up. Why? Because calling is a buying sign... and not calling is an absence of one. Let's face it; if you were interested, you're going to WANT to talk to me... and we make time for what's important to us, right??? Even if it's a "How are you?" text message - it shows you care... thus, a buying sign.

I don't know if everyone thinks that way, but I do - and I was thinking about it, so I thought I'd share. I'm at the point in my life where if I don't see buying signs, I just don't waste my time. :)

(1) Ok, maybe "drift" isn't the right wording. More like my mind SPLIT - I was listening to him and present in the conversation, but I was also thinking about buying signs... and how I really need to replace my nails with a new set... no more fills

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Myspace Migration: Setting Up for Christmas

Current mood:chipper
Ok, before I begin, let me address my choice of song on the front page. It probably WON'T be up long - I'm not going to lie, I kinda like the beat... but, it's up as a joke... I've got a gal pal that will totally get it when she finally logs on. And once she calls me on it, I'll change it. :)

Now, let's start whittling down on the mother of all blog-topic lists. Seriously, it's two pages long! LOL It took me three days to set up for Christmas. Why? Because of one things: lights. Christmas lights for outside and the lights on the Christmas tree. I'm a little anal about my Christmas Tree. No, scratch that, I'm a LOT anal. And pre-wired trees, however convenient they are in theory, suck in practial application. Or, at least the one I bought did. First of all, it had multi-colored lights on it. That's just WRONG in Crystal's world. Secondly, the lights were hap-hazardly strung around the outside third ofthe Christmas tree. Thirdly, they didn't even TRY to hide the wires. No, this would not do at all.

So, I spent like 8 hours unraveling and unwiring the pre-wired tree I purchased. Then, I spent another 3 hours ever-so-carefully wrapping 2100 (that's right...how do you like them apples? lol) lights all around my 7.5 foot tree. And you know what? I HID the wires... no, they are not invisible, but not nearly as in-your-face as before. Another hour to place the ornaments where they belong, drape the ribbons, place the bow and add the star and voila! My tree was up. I have to say, though, after all that effort I can relate to those who leave their trees up past December. It's a shame that all that work only translates into 30 days of decoration. :)
Putting the lights up outside took about a day, largely because I had never done it before and had NO idea what I was doing. Once I figured it out, it really only took another hour or two. :) My house is SO pretty!!

I celebrated with rum eggnog in my Christmas poinsetta flute while listening to Christmas Carols. I'll add photos of the process - probably tomorrow

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Myspace Migration: Welcome to Yet Another Champagne Thursday - Rate the Guys

Current mood:happy
Wasn't going to do Champagne Thursday this evening - after the Cape Cods with Wendy yesterday, I'm genuinely concerned about not giving the appearance of being an alcoholic - 'cause I'm not. Truly. However, after watching Grey's Anatomy, my mind has kicked into overdrive and so here I sit, with my glass, partaking after all.
Life's kind of funny. To some more than others; to me, it's really quite funny. Sometimes in that laugh-out-loud-until-your-sides-hurt-kind-of-way; others more in an isn't-that-a-kick-in-the-pants-ironic-kind-of-way. Sometimes the two join forces and then it gets really interesting. But, with the way I view the world, life is almost always humorous. Why? Because I am bright and shiny - not so much dark and twisty (though I can get there now and again, it's not really who I am).

I want to talk about relationships (nothing new). More than that, I want to talk about the guys that I'm talking to/dating right now. I've been trying to steer away from that lately, because there is more than one guy I'm talking to and I think that it's important to make the people you see feel special. It's hard to do if it's constantly thrown in their face that they're "one of X" that you're talking to (we almost all do it, talk to more than one person at a time, but how much do you really publicize it?). And I know with the exception of one guy, they read my blogs. Which is cool - it's not that I've anything to hide, I don't - I just ... I don't know... I don't know how excited I'd feel about reading details about dates/the relationships they have with other chicks.. so, I try to be somewhat considerate of that.
But, it's time. Time to talk through some of this, get it in print where I might even be able to have a dialogue with some of my friends about it. Nothing huge; just some thoughts.

Earlier this week I was accused of being "unromantic" by my friend Christopher. So, the first thing that does (of course) is make me think about the past and then the guys I'm dating/getting to know and try and figure out if he's right. I appreciate the fact that he feels comfortable enough with our friendship to point it out (though, I'm not sure I needed to be beaten over the head with it, Christopher... ); but, respectfully, I think he's only half-right. Maybe this falls along the lines of stoicism; but, I think there's a time and place for romance. It's lovely, it is... but, it can't rule our lives. It's idealistic; and passion for the sake of passion alone is not truly passionate. We can't really sustain that mentality 24/7/365. And, I submit, we really wouldn't want to - or shouldn't, anyway. Part of what makes romance and passion such wonderful states of being is that it isn't constant; it ebbs, flows and builds.

Also, there is the logical thought of it skews our rationality; which, we need. I need to make a decision on who I want to be with on more factors than if they make me hear the Philharmonic when I'm with them or if I can still feel their kiss goodnight the next day. Sure, those are fabulous feelings - it's just not the end-all. Not for me. I want my best friend... I can teach him how to kiss.

I've met some truly wonderful men over the last few months. Great guys. I've met a couple of stinkers, too; but, that's to be expected. (Note to men; when I say I don't care about how much money you make, I mean it - if I have to say it more than twice, it's a good hint to stop talking about it - I think this is pretty much universal to all self-sufficient women) There are a couple that I'm really interested in getting to know further and seeing where that leads. The points of commonality between them are interesting; as are their differences.

I'm attracted to professionals. I always have been; people who have a career versus a job. I think it compliments my own ambition - I may be joking when I say I want to rule the world, but I'm not joking when I say I love my career and being successful is important to me. Not at the expense of my children/family, but it is part of my mental well-being. And I guess that I feel like people who have a career get that.
Turns out, another point of commonality is music. With the exception of one guy that I can think of, every guy I've gone out with or am talking to is either really into music or is musical himself. That really makes me happy; I know, no newsflash there. But, I think the creativity behind that is really what's important to me - not just the shared interest.

But, that's really where the points of commonality between the guys I'm talking to/interested in ends. After that, they're very different people, all with different industries/professions and they handle themselves (and me) very differently. With one guy, I'm pretty sure of where I stand; with another, it's hard to find the footing. I can't tell if that's a sign or not, but I'm not overly concerned. I think what brought this up is that I found out that I'm probably going to run into one of the guys I'm seeing tomorrow night at the DMA - I'll be with my daughter, he'll be on a date. That will be interesting - kind of like broccoli is interesting (as an aside, I find it rather interesting that broccoli has a generally accepted reputation for making people gassey, yet so many people still eat it *Shrug*). It's ok, don't get me wrong - I am talking to/seeing and getting to know other people - why shouldn't he? But the thought I had as I hung up the phone laughing was that there's something a little unnatural about seeing your competition.

And that's where I took pause. My competition. I have never really, seriously looked at this whole dating thing as a competition before - because, really, there's no clear way to win. It's not like I can exert "X" amount of effort and get some kind of prize. No guy can win me by following "Y" path... so, it just didn't really seem like "competition" or "race" was really an applicable term to dating. But, the reality of the situation is that for both the guys I'm talking to and for myself, there is a comparative, if not competitive factor to it. And while I don't want to shortchange my kid by changing my plans because I don't want to see how I size up next to this chick, or put the guy in an odd situation; I have to concede, it gives me slight pause.

I'm really secure in who I am at this point in my life. I know my flaws and I know my high points; but I do not compare myself to other women. I'm just me - and I tend to look at how I'm living my life and how that matches up to the people that I'm talking to - not how it matches up to the other women they're talking to. And I like that. I don't want to mess that up. Because I don't want to deal with any insecurity beyond the fact that I don't like my butt and I don't look like I'm 17 anymore. LOL Seriously, I just don't want to wake up Saturday morning wondering if I'm as good for someone as someone else is. I don't want that worry (I guess that qualifies as a worry) and I don't need that stress. Does that make sense?

Of course, the reality of the situation is that question exists whether I see her or not. Whether I see any of the other women the guys I'm talking to are seeing - or if any of them ever see or get to know each other - the question of "how do we size up" still exists. I tried, once, this summer to compare and contrast the men I was seeing. Made a spreadsheet, a powerpoint presentation for my gal pals and everything (Hey, I concede I'm a geek - I had a broken foot/ankle and too much time on my hands). But, truly, they were impossible to compare because, like I said earlier, they were so different from one another. One guy was really emotional and sensitive, one guy was really manly and I'm pretty positive that the third guy was gay (though even after proof he still doesn't want to admit it, which in this day and age, I don't get). It comes down to personal preference and what you need in your life when it comes time to choose.

Choosing is a double-edged sword. It's a lovely luxury to be able to have options to choose from; but there's always buyer's remorse to be concerned with. Did you pick the right guy/girl? If you had done "A," B," or "C," would someone else have actually been the better choice?? It can be scary, so many of us opt not to choose; to just go merrily along until things sort themselves out. Overall in life, I'm pretty good at making choices; in fact, I'm fairly adept at it, I think. I'll research it, weigh it out and then make the decision... then it's done. People have remarked at how quickly and decisively I can act. But, with relationships, it's totally different. I'm one of those people that tend to (at this point in my life) sit back and see what happens. I don't want to make the wrong decision, so I will make no decision at all and just kind of go with the flow. The problem with that is, by not taking action and saying "Hey, I want to get to know you better; let's make this happen" or "I really like you and want to see where this could go" I think I could very well miss out - because it presents a laissez-faire kind of attitude that I don't wholly have.

All that being said, I'm not ready to make any kind of snap decision yet; I'm still getting to know people and seeing how we fit - but, hearing about Christy (the girl that will be at the DMA tomorrow night) made me chuckle and think about all of this. That and the whole Izzy/Alex thing on Grey's Anatomy.
There's more to say, but this blog posting is already hella long... soooo, I'll come back to it another time if I remember. To the guys I'm seeing/getting to know - thanks. There should probably be some kind of award for having to put up with my thought processes. :)

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Myspace Migration: Baby it's Cold Outside

Current mood:cold

Ok, first of all, I got a new planner that runs through 2009 (thank you Lifetouch - total perk of being the Yearbook Chairperson). So, I'm getting November filled out and guess what I saw?? November 3rd was National Sandwich Day. This immediately brings 2 things to mind:

1) Not really sure what that says about our society when we, as a country, recognize an entire day to celebrate the sandwich.
2) I wonder if I had a sandwich that day? That'd be kinda funny....

In other news, it's flippin' chilly outside!! Seriously, it's not that cold - the thermometer in my car says it's nearly 50 degrees but the wind is cutting. There was definately NO WAY I could do a skirt today. Nope, nope, nope. Today was absolutely made better by Starbucks. Just thought you should know. The only thing that will make it cooler is if I get to pick up my new Soccer Mom car today. We'll see... :)
One Fun Thing - 1funthing.com - do it. It rocks. More Later.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Myspace Migration: Tuesday, It's a Good Day...

Current mood:giddy
I'm just really enjoying myself today. It's been crazy busy, but I like that! Got good news: my neighbor is going to make it - that's the good part. The unfortunate part is that he's got a VERY long recovery ahead of him. I think in these things you have to focus on the positive, though - he's still got an "ahead of him" to speak of.
I hit my latest and greatest breakpoint at work which translates into more money for me - so yay! I LOVE MY JOB - I swear, I'm having so much fun with the new development practice. I like to research and learn new things and there's a lot to do and learn. I'm going to have to talk to work about getting a laptop, though. My computer here is just kinda hosed and with my personality, I really need the portability, anyway. Which, I've got money in the practice to do it, so that should be fine. We'll see.

Was talking with someone today and was asked if I had really thought through WHY I wanted the things I want out of a relationship. That was an interesting question to me. Seriously, I'm not sure anyone's ever quite asked that before. Lots of people ask WHAT I want, but that's not the same as why I want it. And yes, I do know why I want what I want. Hadn't really thought about it, but I can articulate why I'm looking for "comfortable" as opposed to "exciting" or "make my heart skip a beat." You know what? I've got the latter every day of the week. I've got an exciting, fast-paced job, and more than enough stress/unknown variables between work and being a single-parent. So comfortable is really what I need when it comes to a relationship and really, what feels good to me. (Yes, my sarcastic friend Christopher, I realize that you're going to read this and say that's not terribly romantic. I have two things to say to that: 1 - You don't date me, so what the heck does it matter, anyway? and 2 - Sue Me. :p) As far as building a relationship with someone to where they become my best friend - who wouldn't want that in a partner??? I mean, really... when the fireworks start to fade (and yes, they DO tend to Christopher - romantic or not, even you can't say they're all bright and shiny 24/7/365/lifetime), wouldn't you want that???

Gotta go workout before the PTA meeting. The girls want to watch "Dancing with the Stars" tonight- Jackie's got them hooked - so we're going over there for a "Star-Studded Soiree" complete with sparkling cider for the kids (red wine for the adults) and Wing-Stop Garlic Parmesean, Lemon Pepper, and Barbeque Chicken Wings. We're Oh-So-Cultured.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Myspace Migration: Monday Funday

Current mood:calm
So, the girls stayed with their Dad last night because they didn't have to go to school this morning and honestly, it was easier for me (that's ok, now and again, right?). Picked them up this morning for an early morning dental appointment. Yeah, the dentist's office was closed. They rescheduled our appointment to 2pm. Kinda forgot to tell us - wasn't that just peachy?? LOL

The kids went to work with me. Where I found out that somebody swiped the DVD player I bought for the kids' playroom at work. I just don't get that. They left the gamecube, but they took the cheap-o DVD player. *Sigh* Fortunately, my kids managed to amuse themselves for awhile and I did actually get some work done.

We had the dental appointment. Lindsey's teeth weren't a huge issue to do today; Natalie still hurts. She had one tooth they had to do a LOT of work on today - she might actually lose that tooth, we're not sure yet. Anyway, we get done and they want me to double pay them - I had already done that. Sometimes I wonder if they just throw out numbers and people say, "Oh, ok!" and just blindly pay it.
Home now. Have a TON of work to do and really need to get to the store, but don't want to leave the kids alone (that would be irresponsible parenting) and don't want to take Nati out of her bed (poor thing). So, I think tomorrow might be a cinnamon roll breakfast, though I tend to think that's a lot of sugar for those little bodies that early in the morning.

I kind of feel like snuggling up with the girls in my bed, reading Alexander's Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day and trying again tomorrow.
Still no word on my neighbor. I'm really not in a bad mood, though it may seem like it reading this blog. I'm just sort of spent. Maybe I need some coffee?? I have a Tassimo, I could arrange that!! :)

I had this thought today: how many of our decisions are really critical? I mean, I say that every choice I make brings me to where I am today - as if they're all this interwoven tapestry that if you pull one string, you'll screw up the picture... so all strings must stay intact. However, I wonder if it isn't more like SOME of our decisions make a difference and a bunch of them just don't really matter a whit. So, I can choose to try a Pumpkin shake (which is not on my diet and took about 3 seconds to remember that I don't really care for pumpkin) and it won't have an effect on tomorrow - excepting that it was $3 I didn't really need to spend and over 30 years what would that $3 bring in interest?? LOL Anyway, hopefully you get my point. If some of your decisions don't really matter, does regret become then a useful thing? Does it allow you to become more carefree or does it become that much more important to think through your choices so that you aren't flippant on the wrong decision? My logic is getting fuzzy, I'll stop there.. just something I was mulling over.

I can't believe I didn't remember I don't like Pumpkin all that much...

Friday, November 10, 2006

Myspace Migration: Pepto, Prevacid, or Tums... Holy Heartburn, Batman!

Current mood:exanimate
Yeah. I have seh-herious heartburn right now - to the point of chest pains. Note to self: Orange juice and lasagna are NOT a good mix in your stomach. Reading that, it doesn't even SOUND good. But lately, I've been literally craving orange juice. Can't get enough of it - and I've been popping Vitamin C like it's candy. Normally, I'd say I'm a pretty darn good cook but this lasagna did NOT turn out okay. I will go so far as to admit that it was actually pretty yuckky. I must have made a wrong turn at the sauce or something...

So, now I've got an upset stomach (though I'm sure the 12 ounces of orange juice I had right after dinner didn't help) and heartburn that would start a forest fire, given the chance. I'm looking at the options for "forest fire" relief: do I take Tums, Pepto, Prevacid, all three??? I'm opting for all of them at the moment....
My brother was laid off today, poor guy. I know he'll be okay, he's degreed, he's bilingual, and he's sharp (of course, he's related to ME)... and he knows me, I'm a recruiter. Hopefully I can help him out (or, more specifically, one of my connections can). We'll see...

I'm still buried under work. Enough that I might not be able to keep the plans I've made for the weekend. I really need to get this stuff done for Monday. We'll see how much I accomplish tomorrow night... I'll be burning the midnight oil, either at the house or at the office.

So, I'm wearing these flannel sleep pants that are just THE BOMB. Seriously, it's sorta sic how comfortable these are. Decidedly not attractive, but still - I think I could totally live in these one weekend and be okay with that. I probably wouldn't do anything but sleep, but lately that's ok, too.

NaNoWriMo Word Count to Date? 19,182. I'm WAY behind. But, you know, work's kinda pesky about being my first priority after the kids. If I'm lucky, I'll catch up at Thanksgiving.

Is it wrong that what I really want is orange juice right now?? LOL - I think I'm going to go get some water and go back to bed. Night, all!

Myspace Migration: And Suddenly, The World Just Stops

Current mood:sad
There are all kinds of reasons the world could stop for a moment or two... some of them pleasant, some of them momentous and some of them sad. Of course, we always hope for those pleasant moments, right? Sometimes, though, you end up with all three. But, no matter what the root cause, time stands still for just a moment and typically, you get a flash of clarity. My favorite "world stops" moments are admittedly girly: the feeling I get when I snuggle my girls is the first moment that comes to mind. I could seriously hold on to them for hours and be just fine. Everything in the world seems right and insignificant at the same time. That perfect unexpected kiss (that can really only be better if it's raining) right before you're held by someone you care for/cares for you is another "world stops" kind of moment. It's soft, sweet and everything else just melts away. But, let's get back to reality now, shall we?

Tonight, I had a wonderful time. I saw a really BAD movie (FYI, "The Break Up" sucks. Why the hell would you make a movie about a break-up where they DON'T get back together in the end??); but, I had really great company. It was one of those times where I wish the world could have stopped because I was just comfortable. But, the world can't stop and I have to pick the girls up for a dental appointment REALLY early in the morning.

On the way home, that's when the world paused for me for a moment. I checked my voicemail because I saw I had missed a couple of calls and low and behold, one of my friends/neighbors had left a voicemail. Our children are friends, I like them and our lives are somewhat connected. Well, the Husband had been in what is evidently a rather serious car accident yesterday. He's in the hospital and I have no prognosis to report. That to me does not sound like a good sign.

It seems melodramatic to say the world stopped for a bit, but it really did. In that moment, all I could think about was the pain he might be in and his Wife. Nothing else mattered. Even typing this, I'm getting chills; I can't imagine what she's going through. I know what I'd be going through.

There was one night when Jason (my ex-husband) didn't come home on time. I didn't know where he was and I went through this gammut of emotions. But somewhere around 3 or 5 hours late, I became panicky. Where was my husband? I called every hospital in the metroplex, every police station, every friend I knew of, every restaurant I knew he liked to frequent trying to find him. Nothing. The pit in my stomach was horrid and hard to explain. Finally, I got a hold of one hospital who had a Jason My-last-name that had indeed been checked into the hospital ER that night. The entire world got very loud and then disappeared completely off my radar at that moment. The only thing that mattered was getting to him.

Fortunately, it was a different Jason and as I was getting ready to walk out the door, he showed up. He'd been out drinking with co-workers and was, other than driving quite intoxicated, completely ok. But still, I remember how shaken up I was and nothing had really happened to him. I can only imagine how much worse it is for the Wife now.

I'm praying. I'm praying they're ok (both of them) and I'm praying that God will show her how to find the strength and serenity she'll need during this time. I'm praying that there will be something I can do to help. I'm praying for their child. I'm praying that her world starts back up again, soon...
I don't know how successful I'm going to be at this, but I guess I should try and get some sleep. Goodnight, all.

Myspace Migration: Everyone's Got Weirdness... Even Me!

The 1st player of this "game" starts with the topic "6 weird habits/things about yourself" and people who get tagged need to write a blog about their 6 weird habits/things as well as state this rule clearly. In the end, you need to choose the next 6 people to be tagged and list their names. Don't forget to leave a comment that says "you are tagged" in their myspace comments and tell them to read yours.

1. My nose gets stuffy when I kiss someone for any protracted period of time. Not too terribly, but enough to where I need to take a moment to breathe. LOL

2. When the kids are home, I sleep with the door open. HAVE to, almost. When the kids are elsewhere for the night, and I'm sleeping alone, I HAVE to sleep with the door closed and locked. Go figure.

3. I'm partially color-blind.

4. I get periodic cravings for Orange Juice and nothing really tastes good until I have at least a glass or two!
5. I have to eat the outsides of a 3 Musketeers before I can eat the middle.

6. I'm double jointed in a couple of fingers.

Tagging the people whom I kinda want to know what their wierdness might be (because darn it, if I got tagged, others should, too!):
1. Shelly
2. Bev
3. Chris
4. Christopher
5. Shane
6. Wendy

Thursday, November 9, 2006

Myspace Migration: Champagne Thursday Begins...

Current mood:productive
Ok. I am plum wore out! I think I owe several people apologies, because there are a lot of calls I haven't taken or returned in the evenings this week. Seriously though, folks, I have just been mentally exhausted this week by the time 8pm rolls around. It's like I turn into this walking zombie or something. Or, like two nights ago, I just flat out fall asleep.

I was concerned, mildly anyway, and then I remembered it was like this when I started the residential practice two years ago. I'd go to work, come home and work some more, Beau would light the candles on the coffee table and honestly just leave me alone while I was either working or staring at the candles like a vegetable. Fortunately, he was all into his computer game so I wasn't really neglecting him. I just had to pour all my energy into creating the infastructure for the search practice - so come the end of the day, mental acuity was gone and mental dullness reigned supreme. Much like a pencil that had been used all day without being sharpened.

So now, two years later, I'm starting a new practice in addition to maintaining the pulse of residential (which I'll concede is fairly weak these days). My mind is really wholly focused on getting an in into Chicago's Women in Real Estate, learning my way around CREC, and memorizing the BUMA website. Do I have every developer in my database? Do I know what the big projects in Chicago are? What does the delay in Nicky O's hotel mean to the development world, or does it?? Who are the big dogs in this business that I need to be talking to? What positions even comprise the placable workforce for these companies?? Anyway, you get my point, I'm learning how to roll in this world. I've got a stack of books, magazines, web sites, business journals, scads of notepads and gallons of coffee. Which, at 6am, I'm already well past my coffee quotient for the day and ready for a nap.

I don't know how my personal life is going to fit into this. When I did this last time, I was in a semi-committed relationship; so, I really didn't have to focus on how to fit in dates. I didn't see my friends (unless you count Beau's brother, who was one of my best friends at the time) and my kids had a nanny. This time, I am dating and have met one or two people I don't want to lose track of during this "start-up" period. I have friends I not only want to see, but really need to so that the newly formed tendrils of friendship don't break. And, most importantly, this time around I have no nanny and I have a very different mindset on what makes good parenting. I can't just ignore my kids all evening for work. So last night I decided to give this a whirl (when I realized I had worked through their bedtime): I'm trying to set a rule where 2 nights a week I do no work until after they're in bed (Tues. Wed) and then the other three nights, try to do things that don't have me at my computer with my back to them. Like putting on a kids movie and reading a business journal while we're watching it (I've got all their movies practically memorized, anyway). Then, putting the business journal down and playing a game with them before bed. Then, on the weekends, I'm just going to have to dedicate a few more hours to work. Which, given the time of day I wake up and the time of day I'm used to going to bed, shouldn't be all that difficult.

This will be the first Champagne Thursday in a long time that I will not only not be talking to my girlfriends (I know, poor sentence structure), but will not be having champagne as well. Maybe a glass of red wine as I'm working, but it doesn't really feel like a champagne kind of day

Myspace Migration: This is a Rant; It is Only a Rant...

Current mood:bitchy
I've got ten million other things I SHOULD be doing, but I feel it appropriate to pause for about ten minutes and go off on something. I'm REALLY frustrated at the moment with parents who do NOT have primary custody of their children (here comes strong language, please excuse me) bitching about how much they are inconvenienced financially taking care of their kids through - wait for it - CHILD SUPPORT. How it wasn't fair. I was listening to someone talk about this today and Oh.My.Goodness. Now, everyone who knows me that to say I'm a "Strong Personality" would probably be putting it mildly. I'm wildly opinionated and I have no problem sharing said opinions. So, it took everything in me to literally bite my tongue and not spend a few minutes sharing how completely inane that train of thought was.

Let me say up front, this is not a DAD thing. It's a Non-Custodial Parent thing. And it's probably the minority of non-custodial parents. But it just seems like there's a lot of them that just.don't.get.it. My ex-husband is even included in this now and again. Most of the time, he's really not bad. But, when something out of the blue comes up and we have to have a financial talk - it's really preparing for WWIII. "Don't you realize how much more I do than you?" - Um, no... not really. "I only get them a third of the time, I shouldn't have to pay half." Well, but you do claim half the responsibility for MAKING them, no? And bottom line, you did sign off on the divorce decree agreeing to X,Y, and Z, no? So, why is this a conversation and not a "I spent X on Y Medical Bill - you owe Z" kinda talk? Usually, about that point, my ex-husband rejoins reality and our conversations can continue peacably. Not everyone is as lucky.

But that last statement of "more contribution for more time" is a pretty common argument. Why should a parent have to pay more than the percentage that they get to see them? I mean, really, it just doesn't seem fair... right? Um, no. The problem with that argument is that nothing about divorce is fair. It's not ABOUT fair. It's not even really about the parents. It's about the kids and the lifestyle that you want your children to have. Do you WANT your children to wear ratty-arse clothes because you want to stick it to your ex-spouse? Do you WANT your child to miss a birthday party because you two are fighting over who pays for the gift this time? Does your kid NOT get their prescriptions refilled because you think it's more important to go out Saturday night? I mean, really....

In my specific situation, Jason and I talked about the kind of lifestyle that we wanted for our children when they were infants. Now, I'm not going to say that we had completely in-synch views, but we by and large came to an agreement. The lifestyle that I keep is in keeping with what we wanted for our children. Let me tell you, it's not cheap. So, it really gets my goat when Jason talks about how he makes a greater contribution towards the kids than I do (and I think that's why he does it, but that's really not the point).

(If I didn't have kids, I'd SO be in the apartment building next door to where I work and I'd probably save about 600 dollars a month doing it, by the time you factor in rent, utilities, and gas. - So don't tell me I would have spent that money, anyway)
Now, factor in the 1k I spend in clothes every three months (my little girls got their butts from their Dad's side of the family and wear 1/2 size jeans - the cute ones are hard to find and expensive... they cost more than mine and I need a lot more fabric!), the nanny we used to have and the summer care for the kids (that I solely provide for), the medical bills (that I pay 90% of), the birthday gifts, the toys, the school stuff, the school pictures (that everybody and their brother on both sides of the family needs a copy of - and by the way, why the heck do school pictures end up costing $120 for two children, anyway?), Halloween costumes, Christmas junk, and then the normal stuff like after-school activities and food and such... it adds up amazingly quick and it's nowhere near an equal split.

And you know what? As long as I can afford all of it, that's totally ok. Why? Because I'M A PARENT. I chose to have those children. I take on the additional expenses because it's part and parcel of the gig. It would never occur to me to gripe about it being unfair. Being expensive keeping the little suckers - sure, I'll gripe about that IN JEST... but, seriously, noone MADE me have them. And to not have the responsibilities of daily care and to then gripe about the realistically, let's say 30-40% contribution you have to make to their care?? Personally, I think you should be flogged.

Wow, that really was cathartic; even though I am sure I sound like a complete hard-arse. To all the parents who do make it about their kids... Thank You. - That is all; you may continue with your regularly scheduled programming now

Tuesday, November 7, 2006

Myspace Migration: Voice Your Vote

Voice Your Vote - Election Day 2006
It seems like, for the last 10 years at least, I hear each election day that there are "no good candidates." Why bother to vote? I don't like anybody.

Hmmm... You know I think it is harder to identify with any one particular candidate and be completely sold - at least it has been for me. But, then again, I'm not voting the party line - I'm voting the issues. So, it's quite commonplace for me to have a hard time finding a candidate that I agree with ALL their viewpionts, across all my hot-button issues. I personally would like to see changes to our Land Commissioner, our Comptroller of Public Accounts and actually, our Attorney General. In local news, I'd like to see changes to the District Attorney. In more than one of those positions, I have a hard time finding a candidate that I like.

But the solution is not to throw away my vote! Call me an activist (you'd be wrong, but you wouldn't be the first), call me over-passionate on this issue - say whatever you like, but it literally gives me a sinking feeling in my stomach when I hear that people didn't vote. Seriously, it is our civic responsibility to vote as part of being an American Citizen. And since there is not a single person that I know that doesn't enjoy at least SOME of the benefits of citizenship; there shouldn't be a single person I know that doesn't step up to the responsibilities of it!
Why vote? Every single one of these positions have impact on your life. Example: Attorney General - we have different things the AG can focus on: Greg Abbott has spent a lot of time [in my view largely unsuccessfully] chasing after deadbeat parents and back child-support - we could have someone that not only addresses that, but maybe also focuses on things like mandatory local public voting before installation/enforcement of new toll roads, water piracy, and utility degregulation stabilization of rates. Ok, so maybe I didn't phrase all that as well as I could of, but you get the idea... Every one of us either directly or indirectly pays for utilities and most of us in N. Texas utilize toll roads. Wouldn't you like to know you had a say in installing someone who could help regulate how much you're paying for these things??

Another reason to vote is local issues. Example: liquor sales for dry areas. We have an issue to vote on where I live that would allow the sale of beer and wine in grocery stores in the specific city in which I live. That's important - not being able to (our current status) has impeded grocery stores from coming into our up-and-coming area of development. Not only do I have to currently drive nearly 20 mintues to get to a grocery store; our area is losing out on some significant tax revenue. With my vote, I have the opportunity to help address that!

http://www.sos.state.tx.us/elections/voter/2006_primary.shtml - This site takes you to the Secretary of State's website - and will have information on every position up for vote, who the candidates of record are, ect. Be informed - it's not too late... And then Voice Your Opinion - Vote!!

Sunday, November 5, 2006

Myspace Migration: Sort of a Pay It Forward...

Current mood:productive
I've been exchanging emails with a friend of mine, who was really unhappy about the state of her hearth and home and a few other things. Anyway, a lot of the struggles she has are the same struggles that I've dealt with and have heard renumerated from many of my friends. It got me thinking: What are your current struggles? What tricks of the trade have you picked up along the way that would potentially help others? Seems like that would be a great blog for those of us who do so... and would, by sharing our struggles, increase our odds of finding someone who's already tackled that and found solutions!
Here are my struggles:
1) This may sound trivial, but it bugs the daylights out of me. I have this heavy flatware that is SO not discoloration resistant. It looks like it has rust, but I don't see how that's possible. But, I HATE using it because that's what it looks like. Does anyone know of a heavy cleaner for brushed flatware?
2) I'm working very hard to "be present" wherever I am. I like to multi-task and that's ok, to a degree. But, I also have a hard time leaving work at work and home at home (especially since I work from home part of the time, lol). My job isn't 9-5 and I often find myself trying to take calls during dinner (sometimes even dates, eek); thinking about issues with clients and such while I'm out or thinking about the kids/home stuff while I need to be completely focused on work. I know that's natural, but I need to overcome it. I have yet to find an effective gameplan for that, though....
I'm sure there are more, but I can't think of them right now.

Here's my "pay it forward:"
When Kel was talking about having issues with keeping up her house, I could totally relate. When I was married, it was a huge issue for me, too. Heck, it can get to be an issue now, if I let it! There's certainly no overage of free time in my life. Which is exactly why I adopted this practice from Flylady: "Touch it once." Seriously, it doesn't matter what you're "touching" - whether it be something at work, the stuff you bring into the house, groceries, cleaning, whatever.. take it where it needs to go, put it up, finish the job. If you don't, you'll have to expend TWICE the energy/time you would have originally to finish it later. Plus, it makes your house more cluttered. There's my secret. LOL That's how I keep my house from looking like a complete disaster. I try very hard to touch things ONCE.
I guess that runs along the vien of my second struggle, doesn't it?? That's kind of funny to me...

Water Water Everywhere & Not A Drop to Drink...

Ok. Let me start this off with saying WOW. It has rained enough that it flooded the section of the Tollway I have to go down to get to 380. In fact, I saw two cars stranded in the water - which was enough to get me to hit Reverse and take El Dorado to 423 instead. But, how crazy is that? It doesn't even seem like it's been raining for ALL that long!

So, had a date tonight and I guess the weather change affected my allergies because my eyes itched, my nose itched and I'm sure that poor guy thinks I'm addicted to cocaine or something. LOL Actually, it was great to meet him - he's funny & I have a thing for bald guys. Anyway, if I had realized the weather was going to do that, I totally would have popped a Claritin. Oh well, lol.... FYI, Taco Diner in the Legacy Center is cool.

In other news, I've been trying to stave off getting my nails filled/done because I thought that would totally look trashy for Shelly's White Trash Birthday Bash thing this Friday. I mean, that would fall under that category right? Get fake nails, but not be able to keep up with them. Hmmm... yeah, I don't think I'm going to make it. It's kind of driving me nuts. We'll see. If I can make it through tomorrow, I'll make it (because I'll get busy enough that I won't have the option)... but, I kinda despise how they look right now!
To top it all off, I got home and found out that I'm out of my bottled water. There's water around me EVERYWHERE - just not the water I want! I find a funny irony in that. :)

Thursday, November 2, 2006

Myspace Migration: Champagne Thursday

I.am.Martha.Freaking.Stewart. Seriously, I'm pretty excited about what I'm cooking this evening. Walnut Cranberry Stuffed Chicken; Fresh Green Beans with Tuscan Herbs, and grilled Sweet Potatoes. Did I mention I love to cook??? I decided I needed to de-stress this evening and cooking is just so much fun! Plus, I'm fixing a healthy dinner to boot, so you can't beat that!

I'm loving the change of pace at work. I didn't really realize how much I needed it. Plus, I'm one month into the 4th quarter and I'm at 118% of my goal! Yay, me! :) I had so much fun today researching.... They're telling me I move offices again MAYBE this week, maybe next - that's the only really unsettling thing about work right now. I know I'm moving again, so I don't want to settle in.
I'm about to go walk as soon as Jade's Dad picks her up. I've got 20 new songs loaded and I'm pumped because the walking trail around the neighborhood lake is done!! And it's crisp and chilly outside.. so pretty! Seriously, the world is a beautiful place to be part of today.

Champagne Thursday will be celebratory tonight. I've got good stuff going on at work, I'm confident today's meal will be fantastic and there have been some interesting developments on the personal front. So, I can't complain...
Maybe more later; there was SOMEthing I wanted to talk about, but I can't put my finger on it at the moment.

Wednesday, November 1, 2006

Myspace Migration: I Now Own a Soccer Mom Car

Current mood:grateful
So, I did it. Traded in the Altima yesterday for a Chrysler Pacifica. I now own a "Mommy Car." The kids are thrilled. It's a cool looking car. With American cars, it's best to buy used (well, with most cars, really) because of the MASSIVE depreciation hit you get when you buy new. Don't believe me? The sticker price for my car new - 2005 Chrysler Pacifica Touring Limited - 31k and change. Now, technically, since the 2007 models are out, you could say it's 2 years old. So, 25k miles and perhaps 2 years later - it took almost a 50% depreciation hit. Sucks for them, great for me.

Like the Altima, I made sure it had all the little bells and whistles. In fact, there are only two little whistles that I'm missing from the last car: the seat warmers (I WILL miss those) and the one-touch window raise (it has one-touch down). But, it has dual power seats (the Altima only had driver's power seat) and the DVD player, so - I guess it washes out. Well, it WILL have the DVD player after Saturday. :)
Here's pictures of the car:

That's what the DVD Player WILL look like after they put it in (but it's not in yet, so I stole the pic from another one of their cars). I was concerned that the sunroof would mess up the ability to have the DVD player, but they said no.. so yay!!
Grapevine Chrysler Jeep Dodge did a great job. Very painless buying experience overall. Walked in and said, "I want that car. I want X for my Altima, Y for the Pacifica, and I want the DVD." They said, "Cool" and we were off to the races. Wendy and I celebrated with Cape Cods after it was all over.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Myspace Migration: Happy Halloween

Current mood:exhausted
Wow, it's been one heck of a busy day! Soooo, the kids had a blast tonight! Lindsey was one scary Vampire Bride and Natalie was a Bat Princess. I think it's important to note, that they chose their own costumes and wanted to be something scary. Were I in charge of their costumes, they'd be historical figures like Queen Elizabeth, Cleopatra, Marie Antoinette, or Marie Curie. Or perhaps something cute like ladybugs, hippies, or pixies... But, they had fun and that's what's important at the end of the day. Or, er, night.

Work was very interesting today. I'm expanding my practice to include Commercial Development for the Eastern half of the United States. Can you say "busy?" Because, if you can, you just described my life from now on (like it wasn't already).
Well, we stopped off at Jackie's to watch "Twitches" and "Dancing with the Stars" while we ate miniature food (hot dogs [beef], chicken sandwiches, grilled cheese rounds, and cheeseburgers.. all in minis!) and Jackie and I drank about a half-a-bottle of my favorite red wine. After walking around the neighborhood collecting candy, I EARNED it! But, I'm ready to go relax now; maybe take a quick shower and wash the mountain of glitter from this morning out of my hair. I got a little crazy with the glitter - it was ALL over me (and is now, consequently, all over my bathroom floor)!

Monday, October 30, 2006

Myspace Migration: Monday, Monday

Current mood:calm
It's been a looooooong day. And, of course, we're not done yet. I didn't end up watching "The Break-Up" last night - I fell asleep composing an email. Then, I got woken up by a phone call and I think I managed to get myself more confused than I was before I talked with the person. Yay, me...
Lindsey stayed home from school sick today. I'm SO ready to be back at the office... I'm also ready to work out. Think I'm going to do that...
I had interesting things to say; but now I can't remember them. I'll try again later.

Oh my Goodness, the season finale of Weeds was AWESOME! Before it came on, I fufilled the pampered princess routine. The kids wanted "Kid Time" to themselves- playing, so I had the time. Ladies, the pampered princess routine rocks. You take a shower (to get squeaky clean) and then you take a bath. Lush Bath bomb, and a Lush gritter bath ball (the pink one) and it smells like heaven and has enough bubbles to be the set of a Jenna Jameson movie... light some candles, throw on a CD and you've got one great backdrop to relax to.

There are lyrics stuck in my head tonight.. From Blue October's "Hate Me:"
"Will you never say you love me just to put it in my face?"
"And will you never try to reach me? It was I who wanted space.."
Why is that stuck in my head?

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Myspace Migration: Thinking Over the Things That You've Said

Current mood:pensive
I love that song. It's actually my new profile song, and it's been playing in my head all day. That, along with a few thoughts...

Backstory: Had an interesting talk with a new friend last night and we were talking about how she's now "Relationship Girl" and is sick of just the random dating. I'm thinking I'm feeling where she's at. Anyway, it reminded me of a conversation I had with this guy I had been seeing. We weren't exclusive and he still kind of had a thing for his ex-girlfriend, as I came to discover. I wasn't happy with that discovery, but I understood it. So, I told him if that's what he wanted, he should go for it. Life's too short to settle. Anyway, he didn't go for it, ultimately.. we discussed the whole thing later on and he said he felt like I didn't care about him because I didn't fight for him. Actually, his words were, "If you cared about me, why didn't you take a stand and say, 'Hey, I think we have something here and I don't want you to see her?'"

Yeah. I was thinking about that today. I don't know what to do with that. It's not that I have a complete issue with what he's saying, it's just ... it seems to me that if he wanted me, then this wouldn't have ever come up. Ok, let's move this on to a more generalized playing field, because it's really not about him, it's about me. I'm used to being the one to fight for the relatioship; I'm the one typically putting in the hard work, doing all the compromising and the relationship overtime. And I'm not complaining - there is a time and a place for that. I'm just not sure it's at the beginning of a relationship.

Seems to me, that when the right person comes along, the other people.. well, they just don't seem to matter. You shouldn't HAVE to "take a stand" too early on. Express interest, sure... but, more than that? I don't know...

Yet, on the other hand; people are rarely exclusive when they start dating. So, I guess unless you say, "I'd like to get to know you without the pressures of us trying to ALSO getting to know other people" - chances are, you both are. I guess I don't know how you transition it - all my serious relationships were with friends where we just realized that we wanted to be in a relationship with each other - we didn't really date and then transition, you know? I guess I'm a little lost on this score. Which isn't a big deal right now, because I'm not trying to transition a relationship at the moment. But still, better to know before you need to, right?

Anyway, I doubt any of that makes sense.. it's just something I'm thinking over.. I'm kind of mellow this evening. I don't know, I think I have a dash of pensiveness in my mood this evening. What I do know is that I've owned "The Breakup" since the 17th and I'm going to watch it this evening.. by myself, thank you very much! :)

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Myspace Migration: Sweetness of Saturday

Current mood:chipper
Let me start with, "I LOOOOOOVE caffine." Seriously. It's awesome. Starbucks in hand and the world is right. Plus I had giftcards from work, so I didn't even have to pay for my caffine fix. The world IS a beautiful place.

The world is a beautiful place. I say that in jest, yet I believe it. That's the filter through which I view my life. So, even when frustrating crap happens (Like showing up to work yesterday and finding all my stuff in boxes, much of it upside down and just chunked, some of it ruined because I have to move offices YET AGAIN) - I spend ten minutes peeved and then I'm over it. Life is wonderful, yet again. It's just the way I am, how I'm made up. More of my job orders went *poof* yesterday - bad market conditions right now... yeah, I was bummed at the loss of 200k in fees, but you know, after a good night in (which was also unplanned; So sorry Chris, we'll get together soon) with music and a chance to unwind, I'm over it. I still have work to do, I'm still employed and I'll get to go on a marketing spree... I'm lucky.

I guess my point to all of this is that I like the way I view the world. And not that "my way" is right ~ (I'm not sure there IS, in truth, a right way or a wrong way) but, I don't understand why everyone doesn't think like this. It just seems like it would be such a complete energy suck to feel like the world is out to get you, or that life is systematically screwing you. Which, while somewhat the counterpoint to my view of life; I know people who view the world this way. Like my ex- for example; he truly believes that life is one giant disappointment - and that's easier for him, so when disappointment does happen, it really doesn't throw him. It's what he expected, you see. I'm not dogging on him, I just don't understand how anyone could live like that. It's terribly depressing and exhausting to me. And it appears to be to him, too. But, when we talk about it; he says that my outlook seems exhausting to him. Different paradigms, I guess... Anyway, just wanted to reflect a little on that; not that it really got me anywhere.. I may come up with more to say on that after my walk.

I'm going walking here in a bit. I'm really enjoying my Saturday walks. They're a lot of fun. And they keep the water weight off, lol. I'm so seriously dehydrated by the end of it that all I can taste is salt. I'm sure that's not healthy, but I get back to my car and suck down a HUGE bottle of Fiji water (call me high-maintainence if you wish, that stuff ROCKS) and then go home and nap while my clothes are in the wash/dryer. Call me domesticated, boring, whatever - I like it.

So my cousin called yesterday and asked for my help finding a job. No problem: he's charasmatic, young, energetic and has a marketing/advertising degree. I'm so happy to help - and would be even if he HAD no degree, was NOT charasmatic, and irritated the hell out of me. It just a bonus that he doesn't. He's family - that's what families do - we help. I told him that and he kind of cracked me up a bit because I really think that caught him by suprise. It shouldn't. I repeated: We're family: that's part of it. We're here to love and help each other. I can help; and help I will.

This seemed like a normal, naturally-held belief. If families don't go above and beyond for each other ~ then what makes them any different than anyone else, save biology? Ok, need to go walk now: I have a busy evening ahead of me and I can't be late. I'm so loving the weather today

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Myspace Migration: Wednesday Weirdness

Current mood:weird
Ok. Different kind of day. The kiddos have dental appointments today, so they're both home from school. In fact, we have to leave in not too long from now.
I set a doctor's appointment to find out what the heck is up with me. All I want to do is sleep and it's been three days since I've gotten home, so recouperation and jet-lag as an excuse is wearing thin. Kind of wanting to have them check my iron level or make sure that my new HRT regimine isn't causing this. Because I NEED to be the energizer bunny. :)

You know what I want? A Snoopy Sno-Cone Machine. Seriously, I had one as a kid and it rocked the house. And I totally forgot about it until I was watching "My Date with Drew" - a sort of funny documentary about this one aspiring director/filmmaker's lifelong dream to go out on a date with Drew Barrymore. He would have done better to do a documentary about his lifelong dream to have sustained employment as he was broke, but *shrug* he didn't ask for my opinion. Anyway, for some reason he got her a Snoopy Sno-Cone machine (I don't know why, because I fell asleep during that part) and it reminded me how cool MY S.S.C. machine was. I want to have another one. The girls would totally dig that - plus, I remember this friend from college used HERS to make alcoholic sno-cones, which could have real potential.

I have decided that my quest for the mojito will end Friday night. Now, I don't know what I'm doing Friday night or who I'm doing it with, but I know it WILL involve a mojito, darn it. Except now I'm thinking that I might have actually had a mojito before, but can't remember it at the moment. There's this fuzzy memory of the word and a really interesting glass with one in it - but, that's all I can get... which means, it could be like a dream fragment or a stray thought or something.

Obviously, I need to stop drinking coffee. My train of thought is very fuzzy today. I feel like I need another nap.

Myspace Migration: Riding Red in the Hood...

Current mood:tired
So, I took my kids to the dentist today. Let me tell you, I was RED HOPPING MAD. For oh-so-many-reasons. First of all, my dentist's office... it kind of sucks. However, DMOs kind of suck, too - so, there's not many dentists to choose from. Basically 2 chains. Both blow. Now that I have the crassness out of the way, I'll continue. Typically, we go to the pretty office in Allen. Makes you feel a little more comfortable while they're screwing up your plan of care and such... it LOOKS like a competent place. Well, the dentist that typically works there just up and left yesterday on vacation or something. We were left with a choice: wait another 3 weeks for him to get back (not an option, my kids were REALLY hurting) or go to the Pleasant Grove location. Not ever having been to Pleasant Grove, I chose to go there to get the kids taken care of.

It is NOT a good sign when your car is the best looking car on the road and you drive an Altima. I take that back, I did see a new Dodge Durango and the new smaller Cadillac SUV. Barring those two cars, though, mine was the stuff. It's also not a good sign when you pull up to the dentist's office and it's in an old, renovated strip center decorated with kitchen tiles instead of normal outside veneers like say, brick, or stone, or even stucco/plaster. It's an even worse sign when there are bars on the windows and doors.

Get inside and the place looks like a government office. There were NO warm, fuzzy stuff anywhere in the office. Cheap plastic chairs, linoleum, and bad lighting. No kids books, no toys, no magazines, no coffee tables - nada. They had plywood bookshelves to hold their files and a TV that didn't work. It smelled of pee, but I'm not sure why. Again, they wouldn't let me go back with the girls - this seriously concerns me after the media had that thing on the news a couple of weeks ago about the kid who died due to negligence at the Dentist's office. I should be able to be with my minor child, given I'm the patient advocate for said child. However, I wasn't; and the girls pleaded with me to let them go back anyway, because they wanted their mouths fixed.

I relented. By the way, did I mention at that point, we had waited for an hour and forty-eight minutes PAST our appointment time to be seen? Yeah. I'm so glad they made a point of telling us how important it was to be on time. That was obviously worth it. When they got done, I went to pay and it was a whopping $240 more than they told me it would be. Work's already done, though, so I pay it.

When I left, there was - I kid you not - this car a couple of slots over from us where I watched this woman get in, pull out a bag of something (I don't know what, for all I know it could have been licorice, I just know it was dark) and then get out of the car and flounce off. That was about the time I locked the doors and got the hell out of there.

We went to the Lush party tonight. Have I mentioned I Looooooove Lush? They have awesome bath stuff. They had some new products for Christmas that I'm going to have to partake in... I was taken by their Champagne Shower Jelly, the snowmen butterball bombs, the peppermint bath bar, and a few other fun items. I noticed they also have a new massage bar for Christmastime that might need to be added to my collection. I got a couple of twinkly bombs today - they smelled like powder with a hint of glitter. It just makes me happy there! Plus, they served champagne and chocolate cake. I'm not a huge chocolate cake person, but it's Chocolate Cake Day, so that was convenient.

Let me explain Chocolate Cake Day. It's not a hallmark holiday; indeed, you'll find it on no calendar... save perhaps a select few who will have scrawled-in-pen reminders. A friend of mine lost her son a little over seven years ago today. Just before his birthday, October 25th. She had been planning to make him a chocolate cake for his birthday, his favorite. That year, it felt right to her to make it anyway, in his honor. She did. And every year since, our little band of girlfriends has "Chocolate Cake Day" on October 25th, where we eat a chocolate dessert in his honor. Typically, the kids and I will do Chili's Molten Lava Cake, but they weren't up to it tonight (don't blame them - Natalie's mouth bled for nearly half an hour AFTER they finished working on her). So, I was tickled when they had teeny chocolate petit-fours there.

I thought quite a bit about Beau today. Not for the reasons you might think; I don't miss him at all. I was talking with someone about how they're not in the space yet where their ex-girlfriend is someone they could think about without getting angry, because they feel used. I understand. Totally. And it made me think about Beau. It took a LONG time to see how toxic that relationship was for me and longer still to get to the point where I could get angry enough to do anything about it. When I finally did cut him out of my life, it took a little while to get to the point where I didn't want to beat the practice dummy at work when I thought of him. It just seemed like such a waste. Then, for awhile, it just seemed sad. Because there were so many points where it could have been different; but, he was selfish and I was stupidly enabling. Now, I can't muster up any feeling for him whatsoever except a twinge of pity for how screwed up his life is. I want him to be happy, I think - but mostly I want him to grow up. Given the fact that he's nearly 40 and still can't take responsiblity for his actions or lifestyle, I just don't see that happening. I feel for him on that score. But, mainly, today I thought about how grateful I am that he's no longer a part of my life, in any way. Typically, I like being friendly with the guys I've gone out with in the past - I don't see reasoning behind being spiteful and bitter. But, I'm so much more peaceful without him around.. there's no drama! I was trying to remember how much time it took me to get where I am now.. I'm wanting to say it was like 4 months? I wonder where my friend will be with his ex-girlfriend 4 months from now...

The kids are already in bed. I'm tempted to join them. The doctor did some tests, but he said it's really probably just jet lag. Jeez. I've never dealt with jet-lag before; not that I recall anyway. This is rediculous. But, I'm going to go work out for awhile, while I still have SOME shred of energy left to do it with.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Myspace Migration: Down & Dirty with the Details

Current mood:happy
Part of the beauty of vacations is that you're escaping the mundane of your life; you know... the responsibilities and day-to-day details that eventually make you want to pull out chunks of hair ~ partly from frustration and partly to see if you have indeed went completely numb from the monotony of life. So just the sheer act of being on vacation makes everything seem better. I know this, and take that into account. But, even with that under advisement, San Fran is amazing. It's so beautiful here and, as a largely pedestrian-driven city, it really appeals to me. I love that they're set up on a grid and have been walking everywhere. I bought a trolley pass for my stay that I have yet to use. Don't want to, there has been too much to see to have any of it zooming past me. No thank you, I'll walk and take it all in.

The hotel is gorgeous and kind of quaint at the same time. I changed to a smaller room to accomodate the couple(s) behind me - the people a few ahead of me went to check in and were told there were no more king-sized beds available. Being one person and only really caring about having enough pillows (not so much the bed size, I'm all about the pillows); I offered to give mine up for a double-bed room instead. I lost my living area by doing that, but the hotel loved me for it (I know this by their reaction to a mishap that happened later that day). I don't know if this is a chick thing or a Crystal thing, but I HAVE to unpack straight-away when I get into my room. I'm not really comfortable until I do. Clothes hung up, folded into drawers, shoes put in the closet, suitcases put up, bathroom items arranged and accounted for. I just don't like living out of a suitcase.

So, after I unpack, I settle in for a quick nap because I thought I had enough time before hang-gliding. Dumb move on my part -completely slept through it. Then, when I went, my worst fears were realized: the hippie-dude that was on the website picture was my glider guide. Yeah, don't think so - no way was this guy taking me up - not going to happen. Trying to reschedule for Sunday when a decent looking instructor shows up and off we go. THAT? Was A-MAZ-ING; but I was a little afraid I was going to die. Just sayin'.

Thursday evening: Culinary tour of Chinatown and Northbay. Fab-u-lous. What is NOT fabulous is that my checkcard has disappeared. Darn it. Thank GOODNESS I've got cash or I'd be totally screwed. Chinatown is cool. Kind of discombobulated and random in the way the stores/shops are set about, but I'm finding this is true for much of S.F. You'll see a rather elegant art gallery next door to a smoke shop next door to an expensive bedroom shop next door to a massage parlor next door to a slutty lingerie store. Ok, maybe there is an order to that: get your motor running on a great piece of art, have a smoke to wind down, buy some Egyptian Cotton sheets, get a massage so you're loose enough to use them and get kinda turned on by the person giving you the massage so you get some lingerie to use with your sweetie. Nevermind, I stand corrected: there is an order.

Anyway, the Culinary tour. My tour guide, Tom, was totally fun, kinda flaming and something of a perv to boot. He seemed to go on forEVER about San Fran's history of prostitutes, brothels, and the like. The history he provided extended to the numerous times the city burned down. In fact, with the exception of the fortune cookie excursion, he gave us NO information about food whatsoever. Even still, I had great dim sum in a cool hole-in-the-wall place (love those), some fan-flippin-tastic coffee where the screenplay for Godfather was written (by the guy who wrote it, whose name I can never seem to recall); and finished up with some pizza and wine at a place called "The Purple Onion" where the Grateful Dead played (and a ton of other people).
The Purple Onion owners were cool. We met the owner upon arrival, so I took a picture of him and gave him a hug before I went downstairs to the stage area. When we came back up, he asked me to take a picture of the other owner, and I was happy to oblige. Only this guy wanted to do European Kisses after - sure, why not. They were fun. There were two older couples with me on this tour - one from Atlanta who had children my age and one from England. They were both QUITE a bit older than I and I'm fairly certain I shocked the Atlanta lady. She remarked it was a pitty I didn't have someone to share this experience with. I laughed a little and told her I didn't; and this was ~ in an odd little way ~ a wildly appropriate way to spend what would have been my wedding anniversary had I still been married. On the way back to the hotel, there were several sax and guitar players. I had to sing/skat with one of the sax players for a bit. I had a grand evening.

Friday morning I woke up at 5, Texas time. There is NOTHING to do at 3am in San Fran that I'd feel safe doing with the number of homeless people sleeping on the sidewalks. So, I made myself go back to sleep for a couple of hours longer. After all, this IS a vacation darn it. When I got up and going again, I still had plenty of time to get to Starbucks for breakfast coffee. Found my checkcard, which was good. Ended up in a limo with Witty/Holly, Heather/Scott, Susan and her friend Steva, Jon, Matt and his friend, Shawn. We went to several winderies and we must have been fairly rambunctious, because we (as a group) got griped out by the french winery guy. Actions have consequences; we bought no wine from him. Out of the 78 people that went on this trip (including me), a couple of the married men got very fresh. Those who know me even remotely know that is something I find extremely distasteful. But, I have learned over the last couple of years that is not something I'm able to be as cutting wth as I'd like to - so, I tried to subtly mock them. When one guy told me he wanted to have "fun with me for fun's sake" - no relationship issues, I remarked that "Yes, that would make things much less complicated, wouldn't it? Especially with your wife." Yeah, he took that as an invitation. It wasn't. I commented later that I wanted to have sushi for dinner and when one of the guys said he did too (over and over again) and started cracking up with another guy that we could do sushi together ~ I came to the realization that we were NOT talking about the same sushi. And I'm sorry, but that's just not cool. I DID do sushi - the kind I meant- just with a different group of people. Let me tell you, Ali makes an AWESOME sake lemon drop. We had a LOT of sake. Jon and I went back to the hotel together where I proved I'm still directionally challenged and got us lost. Ooops! But, we made it back in one piece and were were going to watch one of the movies together (they had theatre-run movies on the TV)... except I crashed after I got off the phone with Eric. I'm pretty sure he thinks I ditched him for something more exciting I didn't, unless you can get really excited about feather pillows.

Again, woke up way early this morning; but this morning, I needed to. Went kayaking. Saw the sun rise over the water and it was so amazingly beautiful. By the way, was completely dressed inappropriately for the occassion. There were these two guys (a couple) who were dressed in flourescent wetsuits and I was totally making fun of them (in a nice way) - told them they were so lame! They totally returned the favor when we got done and I was wet and freezing my ass off in jeans. They were cool and we're going to be pen pals. Went back to the hotel, got cleaned up, and then walked back down to the piers and played in the marketplace for an hour before my morning brunch cruise. If the gorgeous views and city bustle weren't enough to make me fall in love with San Francisco, that marketplace IS. Awesome. Fresh flowers, great breads, fruits, oils, meats AND it's an experience to boot. I'd totally shop there every time I needed something if I lived in S.F.

The brunch cruise was cool and I got a LOT of writing done there. The food was fantastic and I ate WAY too many carbs, but it's the only time on the whole trip I was bad unless you count the millions of calories I consumed in alcohol. The views are so amazing and I've decided two or three things while on that cruise:

1) I will live in San Fran for at least one year before I die. Perhaps not consecutively, but cumulatively.
2) I want a sailboat AND a motorboat.
3) Nope, guess I just decided two things. But, I really do love the water, though.

After the brunch cruise, I went down to Pier 39 and played for awhile. It was SO much fun there. Very busy. Went into the Aquarium on the Bay, which is fun because you get to go under the bay and touch sealife. Lots of fun, funky shops at Pier 39 and Girhadelli (sp?) Square is nearby. Eventually, the driver for the Seaplane picked us up and up I went to view S.F./Sausilito via air. Lovely. Really kind of cool to get that view and I liked the seaplane; it was a very smooth ride. The pilot was totally boring, though. When I went to tip the driver (who was REALLY cool), found out my whole wallet was gone from my backpack - which REALLY sucked (never did find it, btw). Fortunately, I always leave 20 bucks and my driver's license in the hotel room. Had to cancel my checkcard and everything though which was a total bummer.

Saturday night was our KBIC dinner cruise. Again, what a blast. We were all there having a good time: open bar, pretty decent food, dance floor - the shots were flowing and everyone was feeling pretty darn good. We went to Cliff's and Suite 181 to dance after that. I'm sure I made a complete idiot of myself dancing (I typically do, but yet I never seem to care) - but, I had a great time. I really drank to excess that night though - and can't remember much other than we were "VIPs" at this club and had the entire downstairs to ourselves for a few hours with many carafes of vodka and juices.

My head hurt SO badly Sunday morning. But more than that, everything else on my body hurt. First time I tried to get up it didn't work, so I had to lay back down for another oh, I don't know - three hours or so and try again later. Even then, I only made it as far as the tub and soaked in a Lush Marathon Bar bath. OMG, those things rock. Eventually, I was able to get up and go to starbucks for their smoked cheese quiche and coffee. Did another quick swoop through Chinatown and then it was back to the hotel to write until checkout.

We got to the airport three hours before our flight, so I had a lot of time to read and write. Reread Stupid and Contagious which remains a really fun book and wrote another chapter. I may finish this darn book in November after all! I was SO glad to be home. Like I said, it was seriously sick how excited I was when I finally made it home to my bed.

I'm sure I'm glossing over a million different details, and I know I still want to address the homeless issue. But that will have to be tomorrow as I'm totally exhausted now. :)