July 31, 2008
July 28, 2008
This weekend I drove home for a much needed trip to see the family. I am really loving trips home now because my parents recently bought a new guest bed and it is likely sleeping on a cloud (yes, I have been a guest in my house since the first day I left for college and my mother gleefully packed up my room). Plus Toby is in heaven because the second he walks in the door he get so much attention you would think he was the second coming of Christ. Either way, the visit home was very relaxing for both Toby and myself.
For being as little as Toby is, he sure can run fast. One of my favorite past times when going home is to take my brothers to the football field and see if they can race Toby. It is so damn cute that I decided I had to film it. So I forced my brother Kevin to walk with me over to the football field. The plan was that I would stand at the other end and raise my hand when I was filming so they would know when to run towards me. Kevin is now 15 years old and apparently has many other things to think about...like girls...and golf...then to worry about his silly sister standing at the other end of the football field with her arm raised like an idiot.
The following was Take 1:
I would like to report that this was the only time this happened...but oh no, we had 4 more takes before I finally got this shot...which is tragically very anticlimatic. I promise that if anybody visits me in the flesh I will make Toby race you and you can understand the pure preciousness in the moment better then this video can exhibit.
Many thanks to Kevin for helping me with this post...
July 24, 2008
Although I don't know how I feel about a picture of my underwear being posted on the web. If you would like to see the rest feel free to go HERE.
July 17, 2008
July 16, 2008
First, we have flown out to see each other every two-weeks. This has helped a lot. Of course it means that we are now committed to eating Ramen and generic cereal for the next year, but it will be worth it.
Second, we talk to each other on the phone constantly. For that, I must thank for Verizon for allowing all customers to talk to each other for free- otherwise we would be down to eating at the soup-kitchen with homeless people everyday next year.
Third- and I cannot believe I am admitting this- we have sent each other emails for each day we are apart. Melissa's emails to me are the reasons she loves me. My emails to her have been the things I miss about being with her. She started at "reason she loves me number one." and I started at thing I miss most number one."
At this point in time she is probably wondering if I am going to send Number 32 to her before she goes to sleep. My thought however, is that on I would post Thing Number 32 that I miss about her on the blog. There is nothing special about the number 32....BUT there is something special about today...
It is our Anniversary!!! I cannot disclose to anyone how long we have been together because we have a tendency to lie about the exact length of time. We do this because it is easier to just give a longer amount of time than is actually true than go through the entire explanation of why it really has not been as short as they may think.
Back to the point. I thought, it would be fun today for me to publically-post the "Thing I Miss About Being With Melissa." This is a big step for me, as I am not usually one to be public about my feelings. However, the distance between she and I right now makes it hard for me to do anything else to surprise her and let her know I care- and remember our anniversary. So without further long-winded-ness from me....
Melissa is without question my best friend- (sorry Mom and Chris)- and I miss spending at least a part of each day with my best friend. Everyone who has a best-friend knows how amazing it is to have them there in person.
It is nice having her with me because she is such an amazing listener. Whether I am telling her some useless and incredibly boring tid-bit about the Supreme Court, going off on one of my rants about how to reform police departments, or simply telling her about my day- she always listens...and somehow acts very interested.
Sure we talk on the phone, but there is nothing like having her there with me when she is listening.
Another amazing thing about spending at least apart of each day with my best friend is that we always have fun. Seriously, no matter what we are doing- walking Toby, watching TV, eating dinner, grocery shopping, (things that I cannot put down because our parents read this blog)- it does not matter, I enjoy everything when I am doing it with my best friend.
I also miss getting to spend at least a part of my day with my best-friend because even when we are apart during the day, I always know that I get to go home and see her. Knowing this allowed me to get through numerous classes this last semester without attempting to paper-cut myself to death and/or drop a giant text book on my head. (Thank goodness my job is more entertaining than class) Having her in the same city as me also means that I might have the chance to re-energize myself mid-way through the day with a joint-lunch break in which we will talk and laugh before going back to the grind of the day.
I miss all of the things and all of the other things that come with getting to spend at least a portion of every day with my best-friend: Melissa.
I cannot wait for this summer to end!!!
July 14, 2008
Now if I only could find the button to print out the doctor's note so I could validly stay home from work without a pay cut...
July 10, 2008
These last three days I have been siiiicccckkkk. Not just sick: Siiiiicccckkkk. And not just the kind of sick I usually whine about, but the kind of lay on your back in bed and beg the Lord to reach down from the heavens and rip your sinuses out of your face to stop the pain sick.
But there has been a silver lining to my gray cloud.
So two days ago Ryan (my brother) called me to see if I wanted to go play tennis while I was driving home from work at the start of my sickness coma. The conversation went like this:
Ryan: Hi Melissa. I was wondering if you wanted to go play tennis or something tonight.
Me: I am, like, dying.
Ryan: Okay. Talk to you later.
I figured that would be the end of it. I mean, Ryan has been around me for the last 20 years (exactly, happy birthday Ryan) and knows my overdramatic ways. But that evening ,while lying in bed, I heard a knock at the door. Toby leaps out of bed and ran to the door in pure excitement of the thought of getting to be around someone other then me. I was terrified. I have decided that my apartment complex is slummy- so now every night I deadbolt the door and put my couch in front of it just to be safe. Hence, I was terrified as to who the hell was at my door.
But it was my brother! He read through my overdramatic tone and into the sound of my voice- which apparently sounded legitimately congested- and he brought me hot soup, ice cream, DC, tea, and bones for Toby. All on a student's budget. I was so impressed, my parents raised him well...and I think I kind of scare him.
Then the next day I called in sick to work and proceeded to call Dan and blame my sickness on him. Obviously. I know this may sound mean, but in fairness he was sick the week before I went to visit him, so blaming him was an obvious choice.
He took my verbal lashing quite well, and afterwards I was so exhausted I fell into a over the counter drug-induced coma for the next six hours…until there was another knock on the door. Toby once again leapt off the bed in anxious anticipation, this time in false hopes of my brother once again taking him on a walk. When I looked through the peephole this time there was no way I was answering the door. It was a 7-foot, 250 pound man I did not know. Hell no. That was until I saw what he was holding in his arms. He knocked again and said "Sunrise Flowers." MAGIC WORDS! I opened the door and there stood the no-longer scary man delivering me flowers.
I have to say, after blaming my sickness on him…possibly unjustifiably so…it was incredibly wonderful for Dan to send me such a beautiful bouquet.
And as I lay there that night in bed, after Ryan once again had brought my soup and was taking my dog on a walk, I thought to myself how incredibly lucky I am to have these two amazing men in my life...and how I am totally get sick more often!
July 7, 2008
This Fourth of July weekend I spent some much needed quality time with my amazing fiancé. Since Dan has been very good about flying to Boise all summer, it was my turn to make the sacrifice and travel the eight-hour round trip flight to Dallas for the weekend. So I strapped on my cowboy boots, buttoned up my rodeo shirt, and put on my pink cowboy hat for a rip roaring Texas weekend.
I am totally kidding.
But I did fly to Dallas and had a wonderful time. We went to the Fort Worth Zoo, Half-Price Books (which quite possibly is a better heaven then they ever taught me about in church), had the best sushi in the WORLD at Bluefish, and witnessed an amazing fireworks show followed by a once in a lifetime performance by the Temptations…(Review). But more then anything it was nice to hang out and relax in a pool that was not infested with snotty-nosed neighborhood kids.
So the weekend was amazing, but what I really need to talk about is my intense need to undergo massive flight hypnotherapy… or at least get my doctor to prescribe me some intense muscle relaxers before my next flight. Let me explain.
When I was six years old my Dad took me on a rollercoaster at the Boardwalk in San Diego. It was quite possibly the most terrifying experience of my life. Despite the fact that it was a pretty mundane rollercoaster that only went up and down, I convinced myself I was going to fly out of my seat and fall to my peril on the concrete below. The still picture that they take of you on the rollercoaster captured the moment perfectly. My Dad with his hand's raised shouting with glee, and then me sitting next to him- ghost white- with my arms locked around the bar …obviously praying for death to come quickly.
So the point is I have never been a fan of things that go up and down. That being said, my first time on an airplane when I was fourteen was ironically painless. I don't think I fully understood the absolute absurdity of a giant ball of tin hurdling itself through the air. So instead of obsessing over the flight crashing, I occupied my time hitting the stewardess call button and asking her for pillows and blankets I didn't really need or want merely because I thought she was my own personal servant.
Flash forward ten years and at least fifty flights later. I no longer am mean to stewardesses, and more importantly, I have come to the stark realization that airplanes make no sense. I have had many people try to explain to me the physics of the wings and the air pressure and how it all works- but no. I am absolutely convinced that one of these days the universe is going to realize that there is no possible way something that heavy should be in the air, and just like that all the planes will simultaneously drop out of the sky.
I typically deal with flying by trying to pretend I am not on a plane. The second I sit in my seat I immediately close my eyes and will myself to sleep in hopes that an hour or two later I will magically awake still on the ground but at my final destination. This flying tactic has served me well, but when Dan and I flew the Florida Keyes over Spring Break, we had an unusually terrible flight into Seattle (hereinafter referred to as Seattle Decent of Terror and Horror) that had me convinced we were going to crash into the water. Ever since this flight…my flight fears have risen to a new terrifying level.
I really blame my current obsessive fear of flying on Dan. Who, during the Seattle Decent of Terror and Horror, thought that instead of comforting me it would be cute to start talking like we were GOING TO DIE and say things like "I really loved you." At which point I swore at him and told him to stop freaking me out (luckily we didn't die…otherwise those would have been some terrible last words). Or the other time in which he was supposed to be in the air and he thought it would be funny to text me messages like his flight was going down. Seriously, the more I type this the more I realize this new flight fear is entirely his fault.
So on this flight to Dallas, I realized I had evolved into a complete spazzy flying mess. I was a nervous wreck before the plane even took off and I could not calm down. Plus I can no longer sleep on the plane since I am gigantic bundle of nerves and every single bump I envision plummeting into my death in a rocketry ball of fire. This flight was particularly terrifying when my pilot into Denver decided that it would be fun to NOSE DIVE on the decent. He also thought it was appropriate to land the plane on one wheel, which was an experience the literally left me almost paralyzed in fear that I could barely get out of my seat.
But it was my flight into Dallas that was the real kicker. Still shaky from the nosedive that was my last decent, I decided to have the largest glass of wine I could buy. In fact, I fully intended on buying the airline's entire stock of wine to get me through the next flight. I cursed under my breath when I saw that there was a small child sitting next to my seat.
Now, despite the fact that I am not really a big "kid person," I try to be understanding of parents who have to fly with kids who feel the need to scream the entire way. Its not really their fault, and if I ever lose my mind someday and have kids of my own (no breath holding please), I would hope people would be understanding. That being said, when your child HITS ME and informs me "this is MY ARMREST DON'T TOUCH IT!" You might want to consider switching out seats so your child is no longer sitting next to me. Not only did this little…blah….HIT me, he decided he would then pile all his toys on me while drawing crosses in his notebook and tapping me on the shoulder saying "I can draw crosses." "Good job" I would mumble, at which point he literally turned to his Mom and said "I hate girl babysitters. I want a boy one." The Mom just smiled at me. I blame her.
But the worst part of the whole flight was that I no longer felt I could drink wine or read my Cosmo with this little kid sitting next to me. So I tried to sleep. I somehow was able to doze off for five minutes and I woke up to the smell of vodka. NOT ONLY had I missed the drink the cart, but the little boy's MOTHER was downing vodka right next to him. I don't really BLAME her, but I didn't get my wine purely because I didn't want to drink in front of her little kid. I almost grabbed the vodka out of her hands and told her that she owed me. But I didn't. I get major good karma points. Plus I don't really like vodka.
The flights back to Boise were relatively peaceful, if you don't consider the fact that I landed when my connecting flight was going to take off…and had to run through the terminal in dress shoes that were too big and made a loud CLACK CLACK CLACK noise as I ran. But at least they held the plane for me, and I only made them wait an hour (good karma points redeemed). But best of all was on the flight back I heard a girl SOBBING in the back of the plane because she thought the turbulence was so bad- and I thought to myself, at least my fear of flying has not led me into full out crying convulsions. Yet.
Here are some pictures from the weekend.
July 2, 2008
BUT I digress, my point it is that I fully admit that I want to see that a company is truly making an effort to give me the best possible service. Not status quo service. Not okay service. I want to walk away from a place saying "DAMN! I am going back there next time I need (insert product here).
And you know what- I promise you if I get that kind of service I will be going back the next time I need whatever product that company sells. NO MATTER WHAT!!! Seriously, even if it is not the most convenient stop, or if it costs a little bit more, I will be a loyal patronage of that place if I get the kind of service we all deserve to get. Even if it has been a year since the last time I needed that product, I will return....
Like I did Sunday when I went to PRO QUICKLUBE (on Parker Rd in Plano) for an oil change and inspection.
(No this is not a commercial and I am not currently receiving any benefit from the company for this post...though they should feel free to offer me free service)
Seriously, the most AMAZING place to take your car for maintenance in the WORLD. What makes this place so amazing? Lots of things. I will get to all of them in a second, but first let me give you a brief- okay, as brief as I can be- background. Important to the background is to recognize that I know absolutely nothing about cars...
Last summer I drove my 92' Geo Prism from Washington to Dallas and then back. Being an older car, I always took it in to get a good check before starting out in either direction. Jiffy Lube is who I visited in Washington, they of course recommend whatever it the computer tells them to recommend without actually looking at the car. In this particular instance they tried to implore me to get something done to my car, (flush the transmission-I think), which I was about positive I had done a few months earlier at a different place. I passed on the service, but told myself I would get it done before I drove back to Washington.
When I took my car into PRO QUICKLUBE the man helping me was named Ali. I explained that I knew nothing about cars; had to drive this 15 year old car 2000+ miles back to Washington; and asked if he would check everything out. Additionally, I told him that Jiffy Lube had told me I needed to have the transmission flushed and asked him if he could do it. Instead of just saying OK, Ali told me he would check it to see if it was something I needed to get done. A little while later he came back and explained that there was absolutely no reason for me to get that done; that he thoroughly checked things; and then gave me a couple of recommendations.
I was amazed. Who had ever heard of a car guy telling you that something was not needed? He was honest. He did an incredible job on the car. He gave me the best customer service I have had in the past 3+ years.
Accordingly, on Sunday when I had to take my car in for maintenance for the first time since I came to Texas, there was no hesitation about where I was taking it: PRO QUICKLUBE. When I took it in, I asked the person who greeted me to check everything out and let me know if there was anything I needed to do other than an oil change. About fifteen minutes later the same person who greeted me came into the waiting area and said, "he wants to show you a couple things about your car." I went out to my car to find Ali, under the hood!
Again, he walked me through everything; physically showed me why he was recommending the things he was recommending; and did it without the typical car guy if-you-don't-do-what-I-say-your-car-is-likely-to-blow-up scare tactics.
So let me just say, Thank You!!! Seriously, if United Airlines ran their company the way Ali runs his then they might have avoided that quarter of a billion dollar loss earlier this year.