Tuesday, October 31, 2006
My husband dressed up as a monster this year for Halloween...he does this EVERY Halloween. He sits on the porch and acts like a dummy and as the kids are walking away, he moves and scares them. He's very sensitive to the kids' ages...if it's a small child, he just moves his hand, if it's an older child, he moves faster...and if it's some 10 year old hoodlum who kicks him in the face, he lunges and chases him off the porch...with ME right behind him.
Yes, that happened twice tonight. First a junior high age girl kicked him in the ribs...he jumped at the whole pack of them forcing them to run right for the corner of my porch...all of us watching from inside rolled on the floor laughing. We hadn't seen the rib jab. Later in the night, a punk 10 year old walked right up to him and kicked him in the face!
You might be saying, well, the kids thought he was a dummy. True, but do you teach your kids it's ok to kick someone else's property, whether it's breathing or not? C'mon, show a little respect. B handled it better than I did. I grabbed the kid by the back of the neck and forced him off my porch. We turned the lights off right after that, but B has a red mark on his cheek to remind him.
Other than the kicking incidents, we had a GREAT night. My SIL, her mom, and her 2 precious girls (Little Red Riding Hood and Tinkerbell) came over, along w/ 2 more of our friends and their little ones (a cow and Superman). We went trick-or-treating for about 10 houses until we were all so cold we couldn't feel our hands, then headed back to the house to eat pizza and hand out candy. Imagine 6 adults, 4 kids, 1 monster, and 2 dogs making their way down the street together...we were quite a sight!
The best part of Trick-or-Treating was walking up to a house with a pumpkin carved with the UTexas logo and watching my friend's son yell, "Go OU," as the lady opened the door. Classic! She teased us back by going back inside and taking the candy with her...but she came back.
Since Halloween is now over, that means November is almost here...I can't believe it!
The wind is INSANE here….it blows and blows and makes a mess. I was so excited to move away from Desert California so I would have less dust in my house. Man, was I wrong! It is MORE dusty here than where we came from…I guess because of how much the wind blows.
There are a bunch of train tracks that I have to cross to get to work. There are 3 places down this road where I can cross them to get to work. There’s usually a long line to turn at the first crossing, so I don’t take that one very much. The 2nd crossing is the one I usually use, and it’s a pretty rough road, but I only have to cross 3 tracks. If there is a train blocking the tracks (which happens OFTEN), then I pass by that crossing and go to the next crossing, where there are 14 tracks to cross – I counted them this morning! These tracks are so rough that I have to drive over them in 1st gear, going so slow that my car almost stalls. My poor Saab!
This is the first time that I have lived somewhere where the geese actually fly south for the winter – actually, the first time I’ve lived where geese live (or that I’ve noticed them). When we first go to town, the puppies and I were surprised by a strange squawking sound heard from the sky. We didn’t know what it was at first! The dogs barked and ran around the yard, and I just stared at the sky in awe. It’s the coolest thing to see them flying in a “V” across the sky.
My MIL scared the crap out of me last night. We go to bed early because we get up early. So, when she called at 9:52 pm last night, we had already been asleep for about 20 minutes. We don’t have a phone in our room, so when I woke up (with my heart pounding as always happens when the phone rings and I’m asleep), I had to run into the living room to grab the phone. She told me she had just talked to Uncle John and she needed to talk to B. I freaked out…I thought something was wrong, someone was in the hospital or someone was dead! I went back to our room, woke up B, and told him his mom wanted to talk to him. He was on the phone for about 1 minute, and then he hung up. I asked him what was wrong, and he said…”mom wanted me to play golf on Friday”…what???
Wednesday, October 25, 2006
I'M AMAZED…at how quickly I am settling into life as a Kansan (I still can not comprehend why they do some of the things that they do though - like not sell liquor on Sundays or in grocery stores)
I DOUBT…that Bill Clinton didn't inhale.
I CAN’T SEE…how people can think that illegal immigrants should be given the same priviledges as citizens or LEGAL immigrants.
I WANT TO BEAT WITH A SOCK FULL OF QUARTERS…the claims adjustor for my moving company who thinks I'm only owed $400 for all of the damage done to my things.
I'M ADDICTED…to email, my cell phone, and grabbing my hubby's butt (it's so cute!)
I FEEL BADLY…for a friend of a friend who just lost a baby (full term) due to Trisomy 18.
I WATCH…too much TV (but it doesn't take nearly as long to get through a show w/ my trusty DVR).
I LISTEN… to my friends' rants and raves and victories and losses and love that they share with me.
IF I HAD A MILLION DOLLARS…I would NOT go to a 50-hour a week job every day.
I WANT…my house in California to sell, and I want to start my family, and I want my immediate family to be close, and I want there to be NO ice storms this winter, and...(I could keep going, but I'll spare you)
I CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT… B (my hubby of almost 6 years).
I'M OBSESSED… with checking my email.
I THINK CHILDREN…will change my life forever.
I CAN’T WAIT…for the Buddy Weekend (only 5 weeks and 2 days to go)
I'M PROUD...of my Buddy Marge for recently realizing what I've ALWAYS known about her -- she is a strong and beautiful woman!
I HAVE A DREAM…that I will live happily ever after.
I ALWAYS WEAR…foundation AND mascara.
I FEAR…losing my loved ones.
I WISH…I would become pregnant with twins! (I pray for that, too)
I ONCE ACCIDENTALLY…ran smack into a plate glass window in a restaurant (I was walking back to my table on the patio and I wasn't looking where I was going -- I thought I was walking through an open door, but NO, it was glass). I was SO embarrassed.
I NEVER…thought I would live in Kansas.
I’D KILL TO…(well, not really) keep my standard of living what it is, without having to work every day.
I MISS…lots about California -- my Buddies, my family, good pizza, George's Specials from Dewar's, coffee shops on every corner, and beer and wine from World Market
I'M LOATHE TO ADMIT…that I could live on popcorn, potato chips, and chocolate
I’LL NEVER FORGIVE… myself for choosing the worst moving company in the world (CALIFORNIA COAST VAN LINES aka HORIZON VAN LINES)
Sunday, October 22, 2006
Well, maybe that's a slight exaggeration, but it sure feels good to beat those Chargers!!
I have to admit, it got pretty tense there for a while, but my boys stayed strong, and victory is ours!
Granted, our record is still not the greatest, but today's win will help.
Let's go Chiefs!
I'm having a GREAT weekend, and it's still not over!
It started on Friday afternoon when I stopped to get the mail. Now, I LOVE email...it's so convenient and it really helps me stay in touch with my friends and family...but there really is something to be said for good old fashioned USPS mail. In my mailbox on Fridaywas a big box from my college buddy who lives in NorCal. Inside were 4 Chick Lit books AND some yummy chocolates (I'm going to go eat one right now). How fun is that?? Shell, thank you so much! I can't wait to start reading!
Then on Friday night, we went to the football game at the high school that B graduated from. His buddy Jay and his girlfriend went with us. It was so much fun, and SO hilarious. Those silly boys got all puffed up when we got there, talking about how maybe they would be asked to make an appearance on the field at half time, and they could not stop telling stories about "that game where..." We sent them to buy us snacks and they came back wearing CHS jerseys! AND, to top it off, CHS won! It's the first game they've won this season! Their last game of the season is this Thursday, and we've already decided that we're going. Small town life at its best!
Saturday morning, I got up much too early, and my friend and I drove a couple hours to OKC to attend the BIGGEST craft fair I've EVER been to. It was at the state fair grounds, and there were 5 HUGE buildings filled with crafts, and food, and furniture, and clothes and jewelry, and all kinds of fun things. We shopped and shopped until our feet couldn't take it anymore, and we were running into people with all the bags we were carrying. I bought a few Christmas gifts, several soup and dip mixes, some Christmas ornaments, and some really fun headbands. This is going to be a new tradition for me. I'm going EVERY year from now on! Our poor hubbies stayed home and planned on playing golf but it was rainy and cold here at home. My friend's hubby wimped out, and decided to stay home and watch football...but B braved the cold (he said it didn't rain on him), and he played 18 holes. There were only 3 cars in the parking lot!
Even though it was rainy and overcast yesterday, today is beautiful! The sky is blue, there's not a cloud in the sky, and it's cool enough that I was able to wear a turtleneck, my Ann Taylor skirt, boots, and a wool coat to church this morning. We ate at yummy McAllister's for lunch, and I'm still sipping on my sweet tea as I watch the Chiefs ROMP ALL OVER the Chargers! Sorry KK! My Buddy KK (who lives in San Diego) called at the start of the game to give me grief because my boys weren't performing...but as we chatted through the first half of the game, things turned around. Does it get any better than this??
C'mon, did the Chargers really expect to beat the Chiefs at Arrowhead?? Of course, anything can happen in the 14 minutes that are left in the game, but my weekend is going so great, I'm going to remain optimistic! Ok, as I typed this, those stinky Chargers scored again...but we'll hold 'em...Go Chiefs!
So, here I sit, watching the game, sipping sweet tea, catching up on email and blogging, doing my laundry, and looking out the window at the blue skies and green grass...oh yeah, and I'm in the middle of planning an Open House where I'll bring in a bunch of direct marketing companies to sell all of us girls a bunch of fun stuff -- jewelry, make-up, cookware, candles, scrapping stuff...and I will get free stuff from all the sales so I can do my own shopping!
When the game ends, I'm going to call my SIL, who moved yesterday and couldn't go to OKC with us, to see if she wants me to go help her unpack in her new place. Maybe I'll stop for a latte on the way...
Not a bad weekend, 'eh?
Wednesday, October 18, 2006
Well, that's not entirely true...it just feels like that.
So, B's younger brother (who's my age) called us last week to tell us that he proposed to his girlfriend (about time!). We had been teasing him for almost a year to not let her get away. B's youngest brother's wife and I are excited about another SIL, and B's older sis could definitely use more chicas around with all these brothers! We will be heading up to Colorado around tax time next year for their wedding.
On Sunday, my brother called to say that he and his wife are expecting! They got married earlier this year, and his wife was anxious to get started in the kid department. B and I will become aunt and uncle again. Between the 2 of us, we have 4 nieces and 2 nephews...is it our turn yet?
We are celebrating with our family members at their good news this week. It was nice news to hear after our "miserable" weekend...maybe this trend will continue...house for sale...hint, hint...
Sunday, October 15, 2006
I have now spent more than 6 hours sitting in a salon chair this week. I got my hair "fixed" yesterday. "Fixed" is in quotes because I still hate it -- but at least I don't look like I got my hair done by a 5 year old anymore. This SUPPOSED stylist made me wait for 30 minutes before she started on me, so I was pretty hot by the time I got in that chair. I had already asked for my money back and had been told that they don't do that...so I had to allow A to work on my hair again. While I was arguing with the receptionist about how I had NO confidence that "A" could fix my hair, another girl overheard us and said that she had to come back next week to get her hair fixed because the girl in the red sweater had messed up her color...hmm, A was the one in the red sweater. Let's just say that I am not a blonde anymore. In order to not make my hair fall out, we had to color red over all of her mistakes. Oh well, dark hair matches my mood.
B worked 16 hours yesterday doing inventory at work. His partner at work, in his infinite wisdom (note the sarcasm), told half of the guys that they wouldn't be needed for inventory, even though B INSISTED that there was too much to count without them...so, the small group that showed up attempted to count the entire place...for 16 hours. Oh yeah, it's Sunday afternoon and B is back at work again...recounting all the stuff that was counted wrong last night...because people start to make mistakes after working for over 12 hours.
Since B worked today, I tagged along to my company picnic with Monica and her family. Yes, I said company picnic, and I also mentioned earlier that it's raining. That's where the miserable really kicks it up a notch. We trudged out to the park, where thankfully there was some cover in the form of a bingo hall and a wrap around porch. We took their son to the animal farm, let him ride down the wet slide one time, and then we beat it out of there. We were wet, cold, and still hungry (since they hadn't served the food yet).
From there we headed to the local Buffalo Wings place to eat and catch the beginning of my Boys' game. By halftime, we were full of wings, and I was ready to punch the idiot behind me who was cheering for the OTHER team. I came home, changed into my comfy clothes, and plopped down to see if my Boys could turn it around...but it didn't happen...so here I sit recounting my weekend to you.
Oh yeah, don't let me forget about the letter I got yesterday. The claims company who my moving company uses sent me a letter saying that they don't see where CALIFORNIA COAST VAN LINES, aka HORIZON VAN LINES, did me any wrong. And they also said that they will be so kind as to insist that CALIFORNIA COAST VAN LINES, aka HORIZON VAN LINES, pay me $0.60 per pound for my damaged items that I DID NOT pack -- that works out to $400 by their calcluations. How generous of them.
B and I were supposed to enjoy a nice meal, cooked by me, tonight...but it looks like unless we wait for a midnight snack, it ain't happening.
So, as my boys leave the stadium with their heads hung low after losing miserably, I will sign off, and pray for a better week...where the word of the day is NOT miserable.
Friday, October 13, 2006
I just stumbled on all the pictures we took on our family trip to Disneyland this summer. What a riot!
Dad’s birthday coincided with Father’s Day this year, and his only birthday wish was for the WHOLE family to take a trip together. He chose Disneyland and California Adventure.
So, my sis and her hubby flew out from Alabama. My bro and his wife came from Wisconsin. B and I were still in CA, so we drove down with Mom and Dad and we met my niece and nephew in L.A.
Do you have ANY idea what it’s like for 10 people to decide which ride to go to next?? The purpose of the trip was to spend time together, so we didn’t exactly want to split up, but it was tough to make decisions.
We started out the trip with dinner for Dad’s bday. My nephew, I, was the entertainment. He really likes ice cream!
We wandered around California Adventure (which, by the way, is WAY better than Disneyland if you’re over 3 years old). B won the kids a bunch of stuffed animals playing basketball (the term “won” is used loosely since each animal ended up costing about $5! But, he did make all those baskets!).
Sis and I HAD to take a picture in front of the “BEAR LEFT” sign…there’s a story behind that…in college, she came to visit me right after I moved away. We were following the directions of someone in the car who told me to “turn left”. Well, we were at a weird intersection where about 3 roads came together. So, I turned left…but that was the wrong thing. I should have taken the middle road, and I had taken the left road (hellooo, they said TURN left). After we got back on the right road, I informed the crew in my car that they should have told me to BEAR left…which sent them into uproarious laughter…I don’t see what’s so funny…Anyway, Sis and I had to relive the whole story by the sign.
We had a blast, and we fought, and we wore ourselves out, but it was a wonderful trip! I hope it starts a tradition…of course, we’ve already decided the next trip will be to somewhere relaxing!
Wednesday, October 11, 2006
Ok, ok, maybe I'm looking at this a little out of perspective...but that has been a pretty stressful part of moving far far away from home.
Yes, you have to find new doctors and churches and banks and insurance agents...but I have people I can talk to about that...and recommendations that I can use.
I THOUGHT I would just look around at the girls at work and find one with cute hair and find out where she gets it done. Well, that would mean girls at work have cute hair...not so. The only one with cute hair (that I've seen so far) is my friend Monica who is in the same boat I am (she just moved to KS, too).
I ended up visiting a couple salons where I talked to stylists and checked out their prices (which are way more than I paid in CA -- what??!), and I chose a salon about 5 minutes from my house with a stylist who assured me that she could replicate the formula for my color that my last stylist (I LOVE you and miss you Krista!) had written down for me.
So, last night was my appointment...you already know the outcome by the title of this posting. But, just for fun, here are the details...
Just a side note -- I'm starting to question my decision making skills...I chose the wrong moving company, I chose the wrong hair dresser, I'm not exactly creating a good track record here.
My stylist, call her A to protect her identity (why? because I'm not THAT cruel), looked at the formula, and went to mix color. I have 2 colors weaved into my hair - a red and blonde. The red didn't look quite right in the bowl, but it was a different brand, so I decided to give her the benefit of the doubt. First of all, she put the color on a little differently, but she started at the back of my head (where I couldn't see what she was doing), so I decided (hmm, decision making skills again) to keep my mouth shut.
As she got around to the side where I could see, I realized that she wasn't pulling the red all the way through to the ends. Now, since it's a different brand of color, it's not exactly the same color as I have on my hair - not to mention that red fades FAST, so it's not really red she's coloring over, it's blondish/brown...so what impact will that have? Still, I keep my mouth shut. When she's all done (which, by the way, she seemed to start rushing at the end, and I got even more nervous), she says she needs to color my ends, so she goes to get more red. What?? She then grabs all the ends that SHE THINKS have red at the roots (since the roots are in foil, how does she know?) and starts putting red on them, and I can tell she isn't using as much dye as she used on the roots.
Ok, then I sit and process for 30 minutes while she cuts some guy's hair, then she washes me out and goes to get the toner for my roots. I had told her the toner Krista used was to brighten up my roots, so the new growth wasn't as obvious. Well, I don't know what she put on my hair, but she put it all over, and my roots ARE NOT brighter.
Next, she cut it, and I think she did fine except a "trim" to me is about 1/2", not 1"...but whatever.
When she was just about finished styling it, my soon-to-be new SIL called to tell me that she and B's brother had gotten engaged on Monday, so I was a little distracted, and didn't check out the finished look very closely.
After I got home, I went to put my hair up so I could take a bath...and that's when I noticed just how bad it is... The red at my roots is MUCH darker than the ends, there are a BUNCH of places where the blonde and red are mixed together on the SAME strand. AND (yes, there's more) she didn't get all the way to the roots on some of it -- mainly at the front (which is my BIGGEST pet peeve)! I CAN NOT BELIEVE IT!
Oh yeah, forgot to mention that my neck is ALL RED from the dye. Well, after making all these findings, I had to have a glass of wine with my bath. AND THEN, while I was in the bathtub trying to rub off the red dye on my neck, I dropped my book in the water.
So, after work I will be stopping by to see A (and maybe the salon owner if necessary) to see when and how they will be fixing my hair. I'm seriously contemplating paying for Krista to fly out and do my hair from now on...
Sunday, October 08, 2006
People watching in Pennsylvania got a little out of control this week. In fact, it wasn't really people watching...it was ogling and in-your-face and inconsiderate.
We were getting ready to go out to dinner Monday evening when we heard the news. A man walked into an Amish school and shot 10 young girls in the head, then killed himself. WHAT IS HAPPENING IN OUR COUNTRY??
The tragedy was the topic of discussion for most of the week. We asked a million questions...why didn't he just kill himself? Why did he chose the Amish? What was wrong with this man? Why did this happen?
The most amazing part of this whole tragedy is the way the Amish community has handled this. They lost 5 of their children, and they mourned them, but they also mourned the loss of a father and husband -- even though he was the reason they lost 5 children. They offered forgiveness to the dead man's wife, and they made it clear that they KNEW this was God's will, and that He had a plan.
A lot of us, in tragic situations, will SAY we know it was God's will, but we continue to try to figure out WHY it happened, and WHEN it will get better, and WHAT the future holds. I don't think the Amish are doing this. They accept it point-blank as God's plan, and they bond together and depend on God and each other, and they get through it and move on. They KNOW that God has saved them and that they will go to heaven when they die, so they REJOICE that their kids are in a better place, even though they miss them.
Where does faith like that come from?
I have a new respect for the Amish. I used to think they were naive and not as smart as the rest of us, but maybe we're the naive ones. They know what is most important in life...their relationship with God. They don't have the distractions that the rest of us have.
Granted, I don't think God commands us to ignore the progressions in technology that have been made in the last 100 years, but He gives us the ability to choose how we want to live. I'm glad that I don't live without electricity or my car or my cell phone, but I bet you that I could focus more on what God wants me to do without those things.
I am not ready to give up my comforts of life, but my eyes have been opened a little bit this week, and I will praying for healing for the Amish community, as well as for the family of the man who caused this.
Tuesday, October 03, 2006
Did you know that you can drive south from Detroit and be in CANADA?? Yup, it's true! I did that when I was here 7 years ago.
Our training is in Plymouth, MI, about 20 minutes northwest of the Detroit airport. We have class during the day, and then we can do whatever we want at night. Last night a few of us went into downtown Detroit to eat at Hard Rock Cafe. The food was ok, but the important thing was that I was able to pick up my souvenir Detroit shot glass.
Tonight we went over to Ann Arbor to see the University of Michigan. We drove past the stadium first, and then we looked for a parking place so we could walk around campus a little bit. After easing the giant rental car into a parallel parking spot (perfectly, I might add), we got out and started feeding the meter. A nice college coed told us that we didn't have to pay after 6pm, so we told her thank you, and then I opened my BIG mouth. I said, oh well, at least we donated to "Michigan State"! Oops! I can never keep these 'U of' and 'State' schools straight. I don't live here. I do the same thing with the Kansas schools. I caught myself right away, and luckily she was walking away by then.
We found a store that was sporting anything and everything with Univ of Michigan on it...and all for under $20! Can you believe it?? They had shirts and sweatshirts and pants and hats and stuffed animals and glasses and golf balls and DOG SLICKERS and bottle openers...I could keep going on, but I'll spare you. I splurged and got a small gift for my hubby and a sweatshirt for myself. Now, I LOVE my alma mater, but you can't buy anything besides a bumper sticker for less than $20. What's up with that?
Tomorrow we're planning on heading to Toledo, Ohio, for dinner. It's about an hour south of us. I know that that probably doesn't sound very exciting, but I have a goal to visit all 50 states in our nation, and I haven't been to Ohio yet. I've been to 39 states so far, so this will be number 40. 10 more to go!
We went out with 2 other couples on Saturday night. All 6 of us just recently moved to Kansas. One couple from Virginia, and the other one from Oklahoma. I met Monica at work, and we have already set our hubbies up on a golf date -- they went a couple weeks ago while Monica and I hit the gym. I met Shannon at the Tag Office, where we shared our frustrations of moving to a new state.
We had a blast! We met at our house, and then headed downtown to a Mexican restaurant (or, what Wichita considers a Mexican restaurant) where we chatted and joked and got to know each other. It was a lot of fun...since we're all new in town, we had all kinds of stories about finding out where things are located, how to get stuff taken care of, and how it compares to where we come from.
Us girls, of course, took the opportunity to wear cute jeans and fun heels...while the boys were dressed in jeans and shorts and sandals. After dinner, Shannon and her hubby had to head home to take care of the baby, so the rest of us went to Oscar's, where there is the HUGEST TV screen I have ever seen. It's literally 2 stories tall. B was in awe!
Even after all this excitement, we still were home by 11pm (are we old, or what??)...but the night was a success, and I can't wait to do it again.
Here's a picture of the hot mamas out on the town!