Tuesday, August 28, 2007

1700 Miles of Sorrow

My friend Di sent me a message today to let me know her pet cat, Scout, had died. I left a message on her cell phone, but something told me she probably wasn't ready to talk about it. Right now the only thing I want to do is be there with her. I know there's nothing I could do or say, but at least I could do for her what she's done for me so many times- just be there to pick up the pieces.
I love you, Di, and I'm so sorry.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Dukes of Hazzard, Twenty Something Years Later...

This weekend I caught several episodes of the Dukes of Hazzard on CMT.

When I was a kid, I NEVER missed an episode. I think it came on Friday nights.

I noticed some things while I re-visited my obsession this weekend.

First- Tom Wopat really wasn't all that. Luke Duke was my favorite, mostly because my sister liked Bo, and I couldn't like the same one she liked! The same thing happened with the Hardy Boys....she liked Shaun Cassidy, so by default I liked Parker Stevenson.

Second- Did you ever notice that when the Duke boys were sliding in the windows of the General Lee, the engine consistently roared to life before they were all the way in the car? Impressive.

Third- The General Lee spent more time airborne than it did rolling on the dirt roads.

Fourth- The people who guest starred as good guys or bad guys on this show were there same ones who you would see again Saturday night on the "Love Boat" or "Fantasy Island."

And another disconcerting thing...The mechanic (I think his name on the show might have been Cooter) is now a member of the House of Representatives representing a portion of north Georgia. Then again, Sonny Bono did that.

Ok- I think I'm done now.

Post-Breakfast Glow...

Go over to my other blog and read about my past 2 breakfasts......

So I'm sitting here, basking in the post-breakfast sugar buzz. I am reading the comments that have been left on my last post.

Another thing you can always count on friends doing is helping you keep your priorities straight. I realize that I have a pretty great life. I have a wonderful boyfriend who loves me, I have amazing friends both in Savannah and Atlanta and here in Alamosa, and I am embarking on a career switch that will greatly decrease my stress level.

Although I don't get to see or talk to my east coast friends as much as I used to, they are still a huge part of my life. One of the things I'm looking forward to when my free time increases a litte, is having more time to email and call them more often. Not to mention being able to spend more time at home during Christmas break.

So....that's what's on my mind at the moment.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

A Little Peace of Mind...

Peace of mind is something I haven't had very much of lately. After grappling with my job change opportunity, and then acting on it, I have emerged from a state of total self-absorption. And I'm noticing that lots of people are making big decisions. On the FRED list, for example, several of my friends are contemplating changes (Toni and the Colorado move, Jen and the situation with her daughter and school testing, Melessa and her job situation, the list could go on and on). I have been hesitant to chime in on these situations, honestly, because I have been so ridiculously wrapped up in my little pity party. But one of the things that's great about friends is running things past them to see what they think. And because they are your friends, you can depend them to tell you what they really think.

One of the changes I am planning to institute along with my career path change, is to be more responsive and open on the FRED list. I can't begin to tell you how amazing this group of females is. They accepted me into their group unconditionally and I am forever grateful for it. But I haven't really been an active participant on the FRED list since our weekend retreat. But that will change, and soon!

I think I am most looking forward to having more time to do the things I enjoy after changing jobs. I won't have anymore late board meetings or last minute overnight trips to Denver. I can get back into cooking and blogging and practicing my newest foray into the craft world- punchneedle. I have a wonderful friend who is expecting her first baby in January, and if I get on it right now, I might have something resembling a hand made gift to welcome her new family member into the world. I like the idea of that.

It will be a while before the free time kicks in, because I will be working 2 jobs until the middle of October, but I will take full advantage of it when I get the chance.
Oh- and my house is so quiet right now......I have a loaf of wheat bread in the oven (which is such a wonderful smell!) and Devin is napping in the bedroom. So I am taking a few minutes to brain dump and try to preserve what little sanity I have left. :)

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

New Job...

I know I have not been blogging much lately. I have been wrestling with a big decision, and sometimes my thoughts get so tangled, not even blogging through them helps.

I have decided to leave my job at the Chamber of Commerce. I have been the Convention and Group Tour Manager there since March. I feel like I did a good job, but there were lots of skills necessary that are not in my bag of tricks. It can at times be very stressful. I realize that stress is everywhere, but if you have a high level of responsibility and stress, I believe you should be doing something you truly love.

I have accepted a position at Polston Primary School as a kindergarten paraprofessional. This should be interesting...

Friday, August 17, 2007

Business or Pleasure?

So this Thursday, my boss and I left Alamosa for 2 days of meetings. Which wouldn't be so bad, except for the fact that they were in Denver. I really don't enjoy Denver. I don't like the traffic or the smog.
Anyway- we went to our meetings in downtown Denver Thursday, then drove to Castle Rock to stay the night and go to more meetings today. But today, we got to go shopping at the Castle Rock outlets afterwards.
Now that was fun. And we didn't get to half of the stores. I bought some stuff for camping, including a folding table and an egg carrier. Plus some other stuff, but I don't want to say before Dev sees it.
It's getting late, and I need to get to bed.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Monday, Monday, Monday



(It was raining on the way out of the Pizza Den)
Needless to say, I didn't cook tonight. We had no groceries in the house.

I think I'm going to start planning weekly menus again. We eat much better when I do that. I simply can't wait til I get home from work to figure out what to make for dinner. That's how Pizza Den happens. I have nothing against Pizza Den- they have wonderful pizza. I just think there's no reason why I can't make equally wonderful things at home.

Anyway, that's what I'm going to try to do. I will probably post them on my food blog. Maybe that way I'll stay with it. Stay tuned......

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Oh Yeah...

One more thing about the camping trip. I have another golden quote from Dev (right up there with the "desperate" incident).

We are holed up in the tent Saturday afternoon as the rain is pouring down. There is a great thunderstorm bouncing around. When the rain started, we managed to grab a bag of potato chips, a piece of chocolate and a bottle of wine. As we are lying there, listening to the sound of the rain hitting the top of the tent (which, to me, is very romantical), Dev says.....

"Drink some more- you're not easy enough."

Blog Pics

I have made an executive decision. I am no longer going to fight with this site about placing blog photos. I finally figured out how to do it, but it's just such a big pain in the ass, I don't feel like it. So from now on, I am going to upload all my photos to flickr and link to it.

If any of my new-found techie friends would like to enlighten me on how to make the blog photo thing less painful, then please leave a comment and help me!!

Camping 101



I just returned from my first camping trip in, oh....say... 10 years?

The last time I went camping, I was with Diane, and we ate well, but spent both nights sleeping in a jeep because the first night it rained and we had a tent full of water, and the second night because we had left food in the tent and it was full of ants.
To see the rest of the pics from this trip, go here.

Dev and I left Alamosa around 5:30 Friday afternoon, anticipating the fun that awaited us in South Fork. We had decided to go to a forest service campground between South Fork and Creede. I believe the name of it is Palisades.
So much cheaper than a hotel.....$16 per site per night! And it was so beautiful. For apartment dwellers, it was a much needed respite from the loud music of our daily lives. Had it not been for the sound of the generator powering the HUGE HULKING HOLIDAY INN ON WHEELS next to us, all we could hear was the rushing of the mighty Rio Grande River. Thank god they didn't run in all the time.
It began raining just as we drove into South Fork. We found the campground, staked out our spot right next to the river, and sat in the truck, waiting for the rain to stop. 6 games of Uno later, it was getting dark and the rain was still coming down. Dev decided we couldn't wait any longer, so we got out and pitched our little tent by the river....

We were both starving, so we lit the gas lantern and made sandwiches out of the cooler while sitting under a huge tree, which proved to be our only refuge from the rain. After dinner, we retired to the tent to listen to the storm. To me, that's one of my favorite things about this trip...lying in the tent, listening to the thunder and the rain drops hitting the top of the tent. For some reason, even the voices in my head are more peaceful when I'm out in the woods. And I'm glad to say that our new tent from REI is waterproof. It would have been an ugly trip if the tent had leaked

Saturday morning we got up bright and early. I thought it was a bit strange that there were no birds singing. I expected to hear quite a cacophany of wildlife. Apparently in Colorado, the wildlife likes to sleep in on the weekends as well.
We were both starving, so I pulled out the home-made buttermilk pancake batter I made before we left Alamosa and Dev lit the campstove for me. I burned the bejesus out of the first couple, but the rest came out ok.

Dev also put some water on to heat up so we could wash our faces. I had forgotten about that part. Somehow I was thinking there would be a bath house.....but there wasn't. It did have a restroom, if you consider a hut built over a huge plastic pan of waste and chemicals a restroom. Next time I'll take pics so you can judge for yourself.

While we were eating breakfast, I noticed this huge blue bird (which I correctly identified as a bluejay) sitting in the tree right near our table. This bird was really big. I named him "Fatbird." He hung out at the site the whole time we were there. I was able to identify him because in the girls' "restroom," there was a poster of all different kinds of wild birds in the area. Dev told me the boys' had pics of animals. I didn't look, though. Our campsite was also frequented by a cute little chipmunk. He didn't get a name. I got a pretty good look at him with the binoculars, but no pic. Maybe next time.

Our spot was really nice. It was right along the river (Dev got 3 chances to fish), and it had 2 big, beautiful trees. Next time we are going to bring a hammock! There are lots of things we will bring next time that we didn't have this time- warmer clothes and better food, chief among them.

I had a great time on this camping trip. I can't wait til we get to go out again, especially since I will be better prepared. Oh- and I'll take more pics as well!

Friday, August 10, 2007

Camping....

Dev and I are headed out for a camping trip this weekend- my first in a long, long time. We have the tents and sleeping bags packed, as well as lanterns and cook stoves and all that other camping stuff.
I have quite a few things to blog about, I just haven't had time. I was out of the office on Monday, and it seems like I've played catch up ever since. I suppose it would be defeating the purpose of camping if there was wifi out in the woods.....

Monday, August 6, 2007

Have you done FRED yet??

I have. And I totally enjoyed myself.

This weekend I had a very unique experience. I was invited to attend a FRED. What's a FRED, you ask?

A FRED is like a girlfriend getaway mashed together with summer camp mashed together with a college dorm.

I met 8 brand new friends this weekend. Prior to Friday afternoon, I had no idea any of them existed.

A few months ago, Tonya asked me if I wanted to go on a girls' vacation with a friend of hers (Toni) and some other ladies. They were getting away to a cabin up near Salida, CO. Naturally, I said I would love to.

Fast forward a few months, and T and I are climbing in her mini-van, bound for Salida! I wasn't sure what to expect, since T was the only person I would know out of the group- plus Toni was the only person T knew. All my concerns were put by the way-side very soon after arriving at the cabin. Within minutes we were all laughing and talking and letting our hair down. The other ladies there were members of a mom's group. They were all there without their spouses and children. I can honestly say I thought I would feel out of place being the only childless person, but I really wasn't. I enjoyed listening to their stories and watching them share pictures. Not to mention the fact that watching them all shed the "mommy" skin and become carefree, silly girls again was IMMENSELY entertaining... :) There was abundant laughter, abundant food, abundant story-telling- and abundant rain. It rained more in that one weekend than I've ever seen since I moved here. But it did not dampen our fun.

I did not take my camera, since Dev was going camping with his parents and I figured I'd be with T, who takes way better pics than I do anyway. As soon as she posts her pics to flickr, I'll link to it.

I'd like to talk more about the FRED, but I'm at a loss right now for what to say. It was an incredible experience, and I feel so honored that these wonderful women let me into their circle of friends. Memories of this weekend will be making me smile for years to come.

I can't wait for FRED 2008!

Friday, August 3, 2007

Why wait?

Here's the commercial I found on YouTube....

Anticipation....

Do you remember that ketchup commercial from when we were kids? I don't remember the brand (it was probably Heinz) but I remember the song. It's going through my mind right now.
I found an updated version of it on youtube, but I can't get it pasted in here. I put in "anticipation ketchup commercial" as my search term. Anyway, I did figure out how to get YouTube to post it here for me, so hopefully that will work.
Why am I thinking about this song? Because I can't wait to get out of here and start my girls' weekend! I am looking forward to lots of laughing and talking- lots of sitting on the deck looking at the sky.
But I will miss Dev.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Thursday...

So I made ricotta gnocchi for dinner tonight. Go over to my other blog to see it if you want.
I am headed to Salida tomorrow with Tonya, for a girls' get away weekend. I will be back Monday to post some pics and tattle on all the crazy stuff Tonya does. :)

Is it Friday Yet????

I am falling asleep. I was so busy this morning, I didn't think I'd ever get everything done. Well, I did. So now I'm sitting here, BORED. I have left phone messages all over the universe, and until someone calls me back, I have nothing left to do.
I've been surfing around on the internet, and I found another entertaining site, very much like the icanhascheezburger site. It's www.laughoutlouddogs.com. Tonya sent it to me, so technically, me sitting here goofing off is her fault. Come to think of it, my sleepiness is her fault, too, because she DRAGGED me to lunch at Back In Thyme and MADE me eat lunch and a big fat piece of Bailey's Irish Cream Chocolate cake. I strenuously objected, but she wouldn't listen... :)

A Picture is Worth A Thousand Words...



This pic was posted on one of my favorite websites, www.icanhascheezburger.com

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Ancient History

Dev gets much enjoyment out of telling the people we meet about how "aloof" I was the first time he messaged me through Yahoo Personals.
I know there are 2 sides to every story, but honestly, Dev has it all wrong. He claims that I "let" him talk to me and that my reply to his first message was snobbish. In reality, my reply to his first message was something like this:
"If you would like to talk to me, my screen name is *******, next time you are on the internet, you can message me."
See? nothing aloof, nothing snobby. I think Dev read into it what he wanted to believe.

So tonight we are driving home from our weekly bowling date with Tonya, Shane, Sarah, Phil and Marni, when this subject rears it's ugly head again. I decided to turn the tables, so I asked him why he decided to try to message me again, if I had been so snobbish during our first exchange.

You will NEVER believe what he said. Not in a million years.

He said......DESPERATION.

Those of you who know Dev, please feel free to email him and tell him what a freak he is.
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