Sunday, March 28, 2010


I quickly realized how boring my last post was, so don't worry, at least I am aware of it and will hopefully not make the same mistake twice. I find myself up during the night which does not happen that often at all (thankfully) but I can NOT fall asleep again. I have slept for a few hours and then find myself incapable of going back to sleep so... what better to do then, by the way I always forget if it's then or than... anyone want to set me straight on this one? What to do next.... look up funny outtakes of course! After a long day, long week, or even a normal day I LOVE having any reason to laugh because I think it is so important for the human psyche. Find me someone who doesn't laugh, and I will say they are unhappy. Isn't that the boldest statement you've ever heard? Probably not, right? But still... laughter is hugely important and I hope everyone (in the world of course) but if not, at least whoever is reading this finds themselves in funny situations or if nothing else can laugh by yourself in the car driving home from work.
FOR INSTANCE; Friday night I found myself at a stoplight staring at a guy who was dressed as the statue of liberty (I assume it was one of those odd advertisements for tax day but I'm not quite sure considering it is literally a guy, probably 23, dressed in a hoodie and jeans but with a bright green toga type outfit and a matching queen like hat). As I watched him he randomly broke out into dance, I could tell he had headphones in and it was obvious he was listening to music. So I appreciated his ability to stand on a very busy street corner and just dance while showing his face. For some reason I think I could totally do that if I had some sort of a mask, but that is just lame. This guy was going to town on his random and quite spastic moves but I had to laugh because as I sat and watched him I quickly flipped through the (mostly) awful radio stations and was pleased to find that Cher's "do you believe in love" was on... normally I would change the channel so fast but in this situation it perfectly fit, and it cracked me up that this guy happened to be listening to "do you BElieve in love after life...." on repeat, which by the way, that's what I think she is saying I don't actually know.
Similar situation about a week ago I was on a busy highway about 5 p.m. and ready to be home. I sometimes like to listen to Enya on the way home because not only is it better than any talk or music on the radio but I find it to be very relaxing. Well, my Enya cd was not within reach and I had to settle for whatever I could find on the radio. As I am getting comfortable with the tunes, I notice a car driving so very close behind me that I could not see his front lights. Now, that is way to close for comfort in my opinion and I found that very annoying. First of all, if I am driving slow (or the exact speed limit) I always put myself in a lane in the middle or far right to make it easy for people to pass me. For whatever reason this dude would not pass me, and spent about a minute huffing and puffing behind me until FINALLY he got in a lane next to me. But when he made this lane switch he was within inches of hitting the back of my car. In my anger, yet serene environment in my car (because I so happened to be listening to Bette Midler's 'God is watching us') and as he passed throwing his hands up in the air, I gave him a 'thumbs up' as I was singing 'God is watching ussssss... from a distance'.
Now if you've never spent some time with me, or heard of any of these songs, I probably sound like a crazy person. But I will encourage any sort of hilarity to ensue on your end of things because we need more of that in this world. Thanks for reading!

And in case you want some of 'The Office' outtakes please check this out.... and I will post some of our home movie outtakes very soon.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

End of the week

We had our big site review at work on Monday and Tuesday and I could visibly see that my supervisor was nervous about it. After lots of preparation and a kind of intense interview from one of the reviewers, we got really high marks! Not only that, the reviewer expressed his interest in our program and listed all the things we were doing right, in front of my supervisor and the C.E.O. Then I had my performance review with my supervisor on Friday to end the week. She rated me higher than I rated myself on a few things, which I think is kinda of hard (and a little ridiculous) to do anyway... example; rate yourself 1-4 on a list of issues, rate yourself too high and you seem overly confident, rate yourself too low and she questions your ability to do the job well.
So after a couple of longish days and still recovering from traveling over the past weekend, going to softball practice was a welcomed distraction. We were outside a bunch and got the dogs out for several walks, and I was refreshed by the sunshine!
We've had a great start to our weekend and we have NOTHING planned but a hair cut for me, and a trip to Target for a few things, and I love those kind of weekends.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Grandma Sugar

We heard this past week that my grandma was "not doing very well" and after several visits to the hospital and different spats of bad health, grandma always came back from it, this time we were all pretty worried that she wouldn't. My sister, nephew and I quickly traveled to Minnesota Thursday and spent Thursday night, and all of Friday with my grandma. We had the amazing opportunity to tell her exactly how we feel, let her listen to the calls of loved ones, and even though she was not fully awake, she responded in different ways and I absolutely know she heard everything we said. Several friends, residents, and nurses came by to tell her how they felt and a goodbye just in case. We shared very special moments with nice Chaplains and Hospice, which I could not imagine doing that job every day, we so appreciated their sincerity and kind words.

Thanks to Kestan for being our comic relief during a very difficult time, he would grab a Kleenex and take turns bringing it to me or Shannon saying "for your boogers..." or "please stop, it's okay, stop." Grandma loved laughing and I knew she was smiling on us then.

I have called grandma "sugar" ever since I can remember. She was a charmer, and the best at one liners, and cute phrases. Grandma called little ones her "little sugar sugar" and that is how I began to know her and how our family always referred to her. Grandma would have been 92 years old this June. She created a beautiful family and touched many many lives.

Grandma Sugar will forever be missed. I am so very grateful for Grandma Sugar for many reasons, but especially for her letting us be apart of her journey leaving this Earth. And now she is flying free...

Monday, March 15, 2010

Living well...

It's usually about this time of year that I get a great desire to work out. Like really work out. I want to ride my bike, I want to get the dogs out more often, I even want to run! I love the layers of winter and the fact that I feel completely comfortable putting on a few pounds, but then I get this itching desire to just kick butt. I made a delicious veggie soup last night; chicken broth, carrots, onions, celery, potatoes, and some yummy seasoning it was great! Why am I writing about this? Maybe to get it out there, to really get it out there and know that this is what I want to follow through on. I have never really been big on 'accountability', meaning if I am going to do something I will do it and if I don't there is a reason for it and that's okay. I work with someone who tells his friend everything he is doing and not doing in order to keep him 'accountable' and I just don't work that way. But maybe for this particular thing I will, I know I am going to do it. I am not setting my goals to losing a certain amount of weight because I just want to healthy overall and even though some days it's annoying, but I just don't focus on the number on the scale, (we don't even own a scale for that very reason). I want to be more fit, and to live well.

That's my 2010 way of thinking, it encompasses so much living well; working out, eating good food, getting good sleep, continuing to make meals together, spending time with loved ones, sleeping in every once in a while, indulging from time to time, continued motivation into loving inspiration!

Friday, March 12, 2010

9 out of 10... really?

Jaxon enjoying a few quiet minutes alone with his new toy before it disappears.

The pet store said this toy was a 9 out of 10 on the scale of "we promise you your dog will NOT be able to tear through this toy". So we believed them, and we bought it. Ellie is notorious for shredding all of her toys within twenty minutes but we thought the 9 would be a sign that this toy would survive in our house.

And this is what's left of it. Although I will say we had this toy for about five days, the longest any toy has stayed somewhat in tact.

I spent a little of my birthday gift card today by getting a few new art supplies and I am very excited to use them this weekend!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Vanilla tacos!

This morning I had to wake up early (7 a.m.) for a Saturday and run off to softball practice, which I didn't mind all that much because the sun was actually out and we got to play outside. Once I got home I was pretty tired and managed to get a short nap before Jaxon startled me out of my slumber by yelling at some squirrels that were in our yard. He actually just barks, but the way he does it sounds like he is actually trying to reason with the disturbance and doing everything in his power behind the window to make whatever it is that bothers him stop. Then Matt and I ran some errands and spent a gift card we had at an over priced dog bakery, still very fun getting new treats and a few toys for the pups, and we may have bought some home baked shamrock lookin' cookies. Then we rented a few movies at the red box and bought some groceries. I only mention the grocery part because I think it is a very simple pleasure, yet one I am very grateful for when it comes to being able to buy fresh, delicious food that actually makes me want to cook. We got home and immediately started making these:

Vanilla tacos. The recipe has nothing to do with actual vanilla but because our dear friends Dale and Jamee coined the phrase "Vanilla tacos" because a lot of Matt's friends have always referred to him as "vanilla", mainly because he would wildly sing Vanilla Ice in his dorm room back in the day. Yes, back in the day.

We LOVE these tacos but have not made them for quite some time. Easy delicious recipe and of course make changes where you feel like it: hard shell taco bowls (key ingredient because they add an extra crispy crunch, re fried beans (or black beans if you so chose), ground turkey and after it is cooked Matt likes to melt in some cream cheese (1/3 to 1/2 container), garlic, fresh onions, chopped lettuce, corn and black bean salsa, and then of course thousand island dressing on top, if you think that sounds crazy, please just try it.

On to the movies we watched: 2012, and Everybody's fine. One devastating picture basically about the world coming to an end in the worst possible ways; earth quakes and tsunami's, just awful. Some terrifying images and thoughts could race through your mind when you watch it, but then there is also a calm in the utterly dramatic storm, the fact that it is out of their control. The other one explores a family that is trying to keep things together after their mom passes away and the adult children hide their faults from their surviving father. Both reminded me how quickly time flies and how very short life really is. We have NO CLUE what will happen tomorrow, we can hope, and dream and rely on what happened today but truly we are still at a loss. And that made me want to love even more and breathe deeply and let every last tiny worry I have just fade away. I want to rest easy in the decisions I have made, forgive myself for the mistakes, and continue having compassion and always striving to live well.
Needless to say, I was in need of it's always sunny after watching both of these movies, I don't think I will watch either one again, but I did enjoy seeing them once. Does that make sense?

I am also so very grateful for laughter and the power of a good sense of humor. If nothing else, I crack myself up, so there's that.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Friday night fun

This past week I started back up coaching softball at a local high school. I really enjoy the fun time spent (mostly) outside and interaction with the high schoolers, plus it's the easiest job I've ever gotten paid for. However, that on top of my full time job starts the season where most days during the week I am away from home from 8:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. and that is an adjustment for me. I've began living out of my car again, with several changes of clothes, different shoes, and backup hoodies depending upon the weather. So after a long, but good week full of lots of work the first thing I want to do on a Friday night is be. at. home. Tonight I played with the dogs for a while as they had tons of extra energy, and then clearly we spent a good five minutes putting Matt's winter hat on Ellie.

The sunshine today was incredible!