Thursday, January 27, 2011

Around the House

Kev has class on Thursdays, which means that I spend Thursdays alone with whatever plans I make. This might make me the worst wife ever, but I sort of like the odd weeknight at home alone. Generally, I spend these nights on the couch with the cats and a book, avoiding my to-do lists and alternating between reading and watching my guilty pleasure tv that Kev abhors. (Strange side note: while Kev is a gigantic Teen Mom and Teen Mom 2 fan, he will not watch more than 10 seconds of 16 and Pregnant. He says that actually seeing how young the girls are while they are physically pregnant gives him the creeps. I find this odd.)

Today, though, I finally did something I've not been making time for, and played with our new camera. Yes, for Christmas we were lucky enough to receive enough Amazon gift cards to make buying our dream camera. I am ecstatic, and true to my secret love of all things reading and research, spent some copious interweb time looking for some help getting my creative itch scratched. While I want to use my camera a LOT, I just don't think I'm ready for the traditional photo a day, 365 challenge. However, this blog has a great weekly photo challenge, and I figured that I could at least do that.

Or so I thought. Oops. Somehow, we are now on Week 4, and I spent tonight working on Week One's assignment. Big oops. So, while I'm hoping to catch up with the rest of my photo procrastinating this weekend, here are my favorite shots from Week 1's challenge: Around the House.

While I'm not crazy about my iron being in this shot, it does have three of my favorite things about our home in it: our orange curtains, our dining room light fixture, and our arched doorways. When I think about going home, this is one of the mental pictures I have.

This picture makes me laugh really hard because it so perfectly sums up Kev's and my eating habits. Top shelf full of tamales, lean pockets, chocolate and Ben and Jerry's: mine. Bottom shelf full of meat: Kev.

This picture was just born out of curiosity about shooting with no flash out a dark window. To me, it is Chicago. Porches, exposed brick, and kind of a strange finish. I also like the funk factor of my patterned scarf's reflection on the glass.

I love glasses. They just say "good times ahead" to me. Or maybe that's just the liquid I fill these guys with talking.

I'm not brave enough yet to attempt self portraits, but I kind of like the strangeness of my three paned bathroom mirror. It's sort of eerie, no? Definitely the scariest elbow I've seen all day.

Now if you'll excuse me, I am running late for my usual Thursday night Lean Pocket, pajama and pregnant teen Thursdays. TGIT.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Little Life Updates

I had a few whole big posts in the works, but then I realized that I probably won't have time today after school to do the kind of life update and reading update and photo updating that I'd like to, so those posts will have to wait for other days this week. For now, here is a teensy list of items floating around my brain.

1) I like the cold, but I wish you could exercise outside in it. I love the snow, and bundling up in blankets, and the sheer adventure of wondering if you will survive when you step out the door, but I wish it was bike riding season, or running season. I know people do both of those things in the winter, but I'm just not willing to risk my life in such ways.

2) Kev and I had a fabulous day on Saturday. We had no plans all day, hung out in our wicked awesome bathrobes (which truly do deserve their own post), read books, played video games, and went out on a fabulously wonderful date to the sushi place near our house, where we drank wine and solved the world's problems. I love my partner in crime.

3) Things have been tough at work lately. Without getting into it, there has been a whole lot of drama. Luckily, instead of letting it bring me down, I'm letting it give me the courage to explore my options and I'm finding some great ones. I've also found a support system of people I never knew were cheering me on ready to help. And of course, I have my man by my side (see #2) and a whole passel of friends to take my mind off things. Life is good, despite the mayhem, and I'm oddly grateful to be going through what I'm going through.

4) I have some kicking reading challenges lined up this year, which also deserve their own blog post, and I'm having a great time with them.

5) I also get to walk my Godpuppy today. He's a corgi and he's silly. More on that later.

6) I'm getting absurdly into the skinny jeans and boots look, although I have a strong belief that people need to wear butt-covering shirts with such apparel. I have seen far too many adult women running around without pants and it makes me uncomfortable. I like to choose whose buns I get to see and when I see them, thanks. What's with that, anyway?

Well, my friends, I know this wasn't much of a post after the two week hiatus, but given a terrifying to do list at work, homework, and a friend's birthday party tonight, it's the best you are going to get today. Happy Tuesday

Tuesday, January 11, 2011


I'm pretty sure that I'm going to hell....because of mixed nuts.

Let me explain.

Two years ago, our school piloted being a peanut free school. This meant no staff or students were permitted to bring any peanuts, tree nuts, or products with peanuts or tree nuts (like many granola bars) to school. We were told to abstain in order to protect the kids in our building who have allergies to these kinds of nuts. Students who brought items with peanuts (like peanut butter sandwiches) were forced to sit at a separate table away from the other students. All students had (and still have) to clean their hands with cleaning and de-germing wipes. Teaching assistants were turned into searching machines, sniffing out traces of nuts.

After some parent outcry, they lifted the ban last year, and we were "encouraged to abstain" from bringing nuts. We have big yellow signs on every door with notes from our district superintendent encouraging us not to bring these items to school. The kids are still wiping down before they start the day and at lunch, but now it's the allergy kids who sit at their own table (with friends who have sanctioned lunches).
As for me? I've become a nut felon. Most of the time, I try to eat according to a healthy eating plan, and this plan recommends that we eat a thumb sized serving of a healthy fat (like nuts or olives) after each meal. So, deep in the depths of the bottom drawer of my desk, which is inside the tiny office in my classroom, I have a jar of cashews and macadamias.

Although my nuts are hidden, I still feel guilty enough about this to devote a whole blog post to it. Why? I make sure to wipe down my hands after I eat the teensy serving of nuts twice a day, and none of the students that are in my classroom throughout the day are allergic. Most of the students in our school are allergic to peanuts, not tree nuts. And yet, I can't shake this guilty feeling.

Tell me your thoughts. Am I insane for feeling guilty about this? Or do I need a good punch in the face for eating my nuts so cavalierly? I need some outside perspective on this one.

Thursday, January 6, 2011


I was going to write a big blog post complete with a picture from each month of 2010, along with some thoughts. However, I realized something: we have big gaps (Jan-May, in particular) with NO photos. Yipes. So instead, here is my resolution for 2011:quiet focus.

In 2010, I feel like Kev and I really settled into being married. We stopped worrying about what our friends thought if we missed or made plans (were we weird because we were the only married couple and we still went out a lot? were we weird if we wanted to stay in?) We also started to really look towards our future. We both started grad school, we bought our condo, and we made more solid plans for our finances. We started eating healthier. We lost some weight. We gained some exercise. (By the way, I'm hoping to learn how to spell the word exercise right on the first try in 2011. It always takes me three tries. Exersize. Excersics. Exercise. Damn.)

You know what I learned in 2010? Growing up isn't half bad. I love the home we're building. I love watching our mish-mosh of college furniture slowly disappear as we hunt for the perfect items for our new place. I love talking about what we might be when we grow up. I love learning things from Kev, like how to jump a car. I love laughing at our 8 trillion weird jokes and arguing over the 8 trillion pieces of clothing all over our bedroom floor. I've realized that I love my life-and sometimes that means not worrying about where that makes me stand in relation to my friends. I'm always going to be awkward, and unique and different and strange. Because as Coco Chanel once said "to be irreplaceable, you have to be different."

So, for 2011, my goals are fairly simple. I want to get back to the goal weight I achieved this summer (damn you, Polish food, cookies, and oodles of wine that added 4 holiday pounds to my gut). I want to quit procrastinating, and focus on achieving a few meaningful things each day at work and at home, and I want to take a few pictures each week to remind myself how lucky I really, really am.

Happy 2011 to all of my family and friends. Whether I see you every day or once every few years, I'm blessed to have you in my life.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Ten Things for Tuesday

***I planned on doing a long post about what we did over break and New Years, but I'm tired from getting back to work and quite frankly sick of reading other people's posts about how they are too fat, so you're getting this instead.

1) I want to go to Florida to spend some time with my grandparents over spring break. The airfare is not cooperating with this plan. Boo hiss.

2) I'm playing a round of Game-On Diet with my co-workers to start 2011 off right. Fortunately, it's holding me accountable. Unfortunately, eating healthy serving sizes is leaving me STARVING after binge-ing all of break.

3) Today I had a great day at school! My two lowest students (who happen to be sisters) both showed flashes of brilliance today and used more English than I've heard them use before. Sometimes I think I have the greatest job in the whole world.

4) Kev had a major disappointment today. Oddly, it reminded me how much I adore him, because I hurt worse for him than I think he ended up feeling for himself.

5) I love the All-State Mayhem commercials. I still giggle every time I see the high school texting one. I want them to keep airing forever.

6) After a month-long hiatus, I went back to my normal routine of walking my former neighbor's dog. I opened the door and he came running to me. I think he was happier to see me after Christmas break than my students were.

7) I'm absurdly excited that Teen Mom 2 is going to happen. This show also makes me absurdly thankful that I didn't have a child when I was 16. Especially since that child would be 10 now. Yikes.

8) Kev has his 10 year reunion this summer. I'm already a little stressed about what to wear. I hope I can find a fantastic sundress for the occasion, especially since we went to the same high school and I'll know a majority of the people there.

9) I know a lot of people that think that Facebook has made high school reunions obsolete. This makes me sad. What about all the people that I don't stalk on Facebook? What about all the people that are going to appear much more or less normal in person than they do on Facebook? So many questions.....

10)I'm officially addicted to, which has yielded me a gigantic to-be-read pile that Kev is starting to comment on. I'd better finish my trashy vampire book tonight so I can start reading some big kid books again.

Happy Tuesday Everyone!