Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Quoth the Raven: Nevermore

Mystery Scene
Ever have one of those days? Just bleak and dreary? I am having just such a day. It's gorgeous out, the sun is shining, but my heart is weary and heavy. There's not even necessarily a reason for it.
Anyway, it brings to mind one of my favorite poets, a Mr. Edgar Allan Poe. When I was in eighth grade, we had to memorize the opening paragraph of The Raven:
Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore--
While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.
"'Tis some visitor," I muttered, "tapping at my chamber door--
Only this, and nothing more.
So creepy! I love this poem, and his others. I love Annabel Lee. I love The Bells. Man, I just love his rhythm and rhyme. Anyway, next time you have a dreary day, read The Raven, and think about how much worse your day could be: you could be hunted by a Raven.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

The Blue Team

Boys (11-13) in football team holding up trophy on field, cheering
I recently discovered a new favorite author. Well, maybe not *favorite* yet, I mean it's not like I wrote a fan letter (yet), which I've done with my past 2 favorite authors (Markus Zusak and Bryce Courtenay - check 'em out!). I'll have to read another book to make sure this guy is as amazing as this first book was. The book I read was Oracle Night by Paul Auster.
In the book, the main character describes a brotherhood of men of high regard, which he dubs the Blue Team. It comes about when the main character reminisces of his childhood in summer camp, and his participation in Color Wars. The teams are Red and White, but there's a secret team ... a team that is formed by invitation only. A camp counselor organizes the secret Blue Team - the members that are asked to join are loyal, respected and respectful: the best of the best. Not necessarily as far as athleticism goes, but as far as humanity, ethics and morality go: these are the people you want on your team.
Now, the concept of the Blue Team was not really a main part of the plot, but it was certainly an important device in the book, and it really touched me after I finished reading the amazing story of a novel... within a novel... within a novel. I have great friends, and I'm really blown away by their friendship. They are true Blue Team members, definitely, and I'm glad that they are the people I get to be surrounded with (I mean... we chose each other, sure, but sometimes people can be duds. Not my friends!). And my family! My family - whom I did NOT choose - they are certainly Blue Team.
Who do you have in your life on the Blue Team?

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

The List

Checklist and pencil
Some call it a Bucket List. Some call it a Resolution. Some just call it a To Do List. The list I keep in my wallet is simply titled Plans.
It's my list of things I'd like to do. One is for the upcoming year, and one is for life.
Jennie has a great list and she keeps it pretty up-to-date. Maybe we can get her to post hers here.
My list for 2010 is a good one. I got a lot of advice when I started making resolutions this year, and luckily I didn't listen to any of it. People tried to tell me that I should only make three or four resolutions. They tried to tell me that I wouldn't get anything done past March. They tried to tell me not to be vague, and not to be too specific (thanks? for that?). Well, I've been able to mark things off my list, such as: "Travel somewhere awesome" (New Orleans), "Double $$ from freelance projects over last year", "Take a writing class", and I'm working on " Read Fearless with my girlfriends" (and the rest of the resolutions for the year).
My "Plans" list is a little more... awesome. I have the 3 tennis grand slams that I would love to see (checked off is the Australian Open), plus "See Federer play". I hold my breath every year to make sure he doesn't retire before I get to see him play in person. I've been able to check off "Get a bike" and "Get a new computer" -- hmmmm...maybe I need to add: Ride my bike. Trips I want to take: Alaska and Vancouver. Go on a missions trip. Get a trip paid for by writing. Can you tell I'm really into travel?
What are some of the things on your list?

Monday, May 17, 2010

I'm a big girl now.

Most of you know that last fall I bought a house. It was the ideal time (yard work wise) to buy a house. I didn't have to do an ounce of yard work when I moved in because the grass wasn't was to cold. Then summer had to come into my life. My weeds (ahem..grass) were growing fast. The bushes were becoming trees,and things were getting very out of hand. I was so unprepared. I didn't have any tools and no lawn mower. NOTHING.
So my dad, being the hero that he is, has been cutting my lawn. He helped me trim the bushes in the front—so you could see my house, of course. After a few weeks of him...doing the yard work, he decided to give me his lawn mower. He bought a new one, of course. So I had to learn how to cut my own lawn. BOOOOO! He came over to show me all the bells and whistles on his old lawn mower and yesterday—dundadduna! I....CUT.....MY.....OWN....GRASS! I felt like a proud home owner. I know, it is just cutting grass. I have never done it before, so it was a big deal to me. AND now I know I can do it! I'm a big girl now.

Friday, May 14, 2010


I am one of those people that wants a hobby, tries to have a hobby and then fails miserably at ever DOING the hobby. It seems have something you enjoy so much that you want to spend all of your time doing it. I pretty much skip around to different activities and never commit to one. I am one of those people that loves change. (i.e. I rearrange my furniture numerous times throughout the year--attempting to get the "perfect" set up)
So I always wonder...what would it be like to have ONE or TWO hobbies that I enjoyed so much that it was all I ever wanted to do.
Tell me about your hobby.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Oh! Sweet Pig!

Our friend, reader and occasional commenter, Lori (we've called her Loggins on this site), has begun her own blog. Not only is Lori fantastically funny, but she also exults in using words incorrectly (and against my grammatical advice. Seriously - tell her that "coupon" is only a noun, not a verb). The blog, Oh! Sweet Pig! is located here.
Pink stuffed pig uid 1298582

haha. Just kidding. It's here. But, that's what she gets for being the original Cat Lady, and the reason for the Cat Lady Equation.

I tried to convince her to just join our blog. Lori would add a lot of flair. Alas, she had already begun her own brilliant blog. Yay, Lori!! It's awesome and funny. Check it out.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010


Clock on wall
Things that make me feel older:
•Having to type 3 as my first number in my age. Really - I keep going for the 2.
•Realizing that a movie that "just came out in 1994" actually came out 16 years ago. And that some people I know were only 4 years old at the time.
•High School Reunions
•Getting upset about "kids today".

Things that make me feel younger:
•Hanging out with my awesome friends.
•Being able to be spontaneous with my plans.
•Playing with my niece and nephew.
•Ending my age with a 0. It's just 30, not 31, or 37, or 39.

There have been a few things that happened to me lately that have given me some conflicting feelings about my age. Thirty has been a terrific year for me so far. Seriously - some really wonderful things have happened, and I truly believe it's just going to be such a full year that I'll always look back at this age and think " yeah, thirty was great for me!" But I still sometimes feel old. What are some things that make you feel younger or older?

Monday, May 10, 2010

Is this it?

You ever feel uneasy? Antsy? Unsure for no reason?
Today is one of those days for me. I am anxious, ADD and antsy for no reason.
I can never pinpoint what it is.
What is different about the day or what causes the feeling?
It starts like a normal day but ends up a “not great” day.
I feel unproductive, anxiety-stricken and ready for a change.
I am a person who loves change, so I wonder if it is just the uneasiness of fearing my life will always be the same.
How do I change the feeling? Make it go away?
Can anyone relate?

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Blasting the Competition

Tennis racket and ball
I'm a competitive person. I would like to win everything. Seriously.
I want to win board games, arguments, and even sports that I am terrible at.
So ... I get disappointed. A lot. Because there are some things I'm just not going to win.
I play tennis, and we have matches every weekend. And I'm good. But I'm not great. In fact, if someone else came along and said they were good, chances are that they're better than me.
I have to stifle my competitive nature when I'm playing tennis for several reasons. First, because I'm just not that good, so it's pointless to be so competitive. Second and possibly the most important reason is because I play doubles, so I just cannot do that to my partner. I can't let them feel pressured by me, and I can't pressure myself. If I give off even the hint of being competitive, they will feel enormous pressure and ... this leads us to the third reason...
Tennis is probably 90% a mental game. What is happening in the player's mind is even more important than what is happening with my arms and legs. If I'm distracted, or frustrated or excited - it will affect my game. For example, this past weekend I was getting really frustrated in my match, because I knew we were better than those girls. I KNEW IT. And I just wasn't playing well enough! So what started happening? Did this anger and frustration give me a leg up? Heck no! I started double faulting on top of everything else. (In my opinion, the double fault is an indicator of a mental breakdown in a player. Because it's ALL on the player. It has nothing to do with the opponent).
I do a pretty good job of not being competitive when I'm playing tennis, because it will lead to a lot of losses. I'm pretty sure that if you asked any of my partners if I'm competitive, they would say that I'm not more competitive than the average person. But if you asked one of my friends, like Jennie or Lori, if I'm competitive, they would give a heartfelt and unanimous YES!