Monday, December 28, 2009

She

I have written a couple posts here about my pops, it occurred to me the other day I never told you about my mom.

She’s the kind of lady who will fly her daughter home for Christmas because of homesickness and faraway sickness.

She is the quiet strong.

The backbone of the family.

She will dance with you in the kitchen when your five.

She’ll sing along to wee sing silly songs on your way to daycare. She has a sweet quiet singing voice.

She comforts you when life deals it's cards.

She laughs loud and often.

She fed, dressed, did homework, and played with us kids while working full time.

She is the kind of mom who let her kids spend a couple hours at Toys’R’US and pick out one toy at the end of the trip.

She’s patient, never loosing her cool.

Her hugs are warm.

She can throw-down in foosball.

She has raised three teenagers with humor.

She is a great daughter, a fantastic grandmother.

She can cook anything, always prepared to entertain a houseful.

She has taught me independence and patience.

Some women worry about turning into their mothers as they get older. If I turn out to be half the woman my mom is I will be happy.

I wish my doorstep was closer to hers.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

A Homemade Christmas

All of our Christmas decorations are in a storage unit in California this year. After work one day, Bobaloo found some fun shiny stuff that the AT&T store threw away. Knowing my propensity for shiny stuff, he put it in the Groovaru and brought it on home.
This is the stuff Christmas trees are made of..
.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

"Tis The Season

It has been a while. I’ll use the excuse that my fingers were too cold to type.

The cold snap has put a damper on my disposition

and Christmas can be such an imposition.

In eight days I go to see my family. Everyone, including my brother who I haven’t seen in two years and a nephew I haven’t met. This makes me very happy.

In eight days I get to see all of my best friends, and my best friends’ spouses, and my best friends’ children. This makes me very happy.

I work on Christmas. I am happy to work on Christmas.

I work on New Year’s. I am unhappy to work on New Year’s.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Gobble Gobble

Has everyone recovered from Thanksgiving? Good.

I have been living 928 miles from my family for the last four years now. It is hard to be away from the pandemonium that is the holidays with them. Amidst a little homesickness, Bobaloo and I have been starting our own traditions. I am usually not a huge fan of the holidays, but now that I get to do them my own way I look forward to them more and more.

When we first moved out to Colorado we would do traditional Thanksgiving feasts. This year we had our second annual buffet at the Table Mountain Inn. No cooking, no dishes, no drama. I ate my weight in vegetables, Bobaloo ate his fair share of turkey and we were happy and full. I napped, he watched football. All in all, Thanksgiving was a success!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Ugly Sweater You're The One

I went thrift store shopping last week and found a find that I couldn't pass up. Originally this treasure was $2.89, but I was lucky enough to get it half off.
This little number will go great sitting on the patio while reading.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Honest Scrap

Scrap means left over, fragments, discarded material. Many times truth and honesty are discarded material, considered fragments and left over. People like us need to tell it like it is, and let the scraps fall where they will.

I received the Honest Scrap Award from Sam at A Place I Call My Own. So, thanks Sam! The rules of the award are as follows:

  1. Thank the person who gave the award and list their blog and link it.
  2. Share "10 Honest Things" about yourself.
  3. Present this award to 7 others who blogs you find brilliant in content and/or design, or those who have encouraged you.
  4. Tell those 7 people they've been awarded Honest Scrap and inform them of these guidelines in receiving the award.

10 Honest Things

  1. I love languages (especially Spanish and French). I would love to go to school for linguistics.
  2. I used to be afraid of snakes and just learned how to hold one where I volunteer. Eek.
  3. If I won the lottery I would take a year with a pop-up camper and travel to all fifty states, saving Hawaii for last.
  4. I feel better when I read.
  5. I miss living close to my family but secretly I enjoy being far away.
  6. I would love to write short stories for a living.
  7. Summer is my favorite season. All of the clothes in the winter make me claustrophobic.
  8. I'd rather eat pretzels than a chocolate bar.
  9. If I could live anywhere for a year I would move to France.
  10. I am not a cook. Restaurant reservations have been made for Thanksgiving!
I hereby officially nominate the following seven folks for the Honest Scrap Award!
  1. Deidre at Decoybetty. I love to read about Deidre's adventures in Australia, especially when there are dudes involved!
  2. Lolly at Enchantingly Ludicrous. Lolly is the only blogger-friend I have met in real life and I recall she kicks ass at darts. I enjoy reading about Lolly's balance of motherhood, school, and fun.
  3. San Diego Writer Girl at Lisa Wants the Floor. Lisa has a beautiful style of writing and has been great encouragement.
  4. A.B. at The A-List. A.B. is funny when she's bitter, and she runs a lot!
  5. The Maiden Metallurgist at The Maiden Metallurgist. I love to read about the Maiden's adventures in Chicago and she always posts the best pictures. She has also taught me how to spell "metallurgist."
  6. Jacob at Busy Busy Busy. It is fun to read about Jacob's transition into the "real world." He is funny and articulates beautifully the struggle of early mornings, coworker fridges, and office etiquette.
  7. Lora at Fever. Lora is one of the first blogs I followed. She is brilliant and encouraging.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Orange Push-up Dreams

I was born during a blizzard in April. My grandfather gave me an American flag and told my parents that I had nice ears. I was olive-colored with black hair. My mother couldn’t believe that I was hers.

I remember living in the old house. I remember bathing in the sink and how tall my older brother was. I remember the green front steps with a wrought iron rail. I remember the hail storm and crying when my dad went out to take a picture. I remember the cartoons on the television set.

When we moved, my brother and I ran up and down and back and forth on the ramp of the moving truck. It was August and hot. The new blue house. The neighbors came over and one of the girls was pretending to be a monkey. She would turn out to be my best friend. We would sit in lawn chairs under the sprinkler and hold up umbrellas and eat orange push-ups.

Early memories are a blur, but they are there. I try to recall my first memories when I have trouble sleeping. Sometimes I dream about those days.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Jill in Real Life

Blogs are fun. I have “met” a few interesting and fun people through my blog. Lora puts it nicely over at Fever; people I blog with.

Sometimes it’s hard to come across the same way in my blog as I do in real life. Here are some real life facts about me.

I embarrass easy and my face turns red.

I have weird personal space issues with strangers

I have a quiet laugh

I am goofier in person

I get louder, the more I drink

Once I get going, I am a chatterbox

I love music, like, really love it. Symbiotic stuff.

I know a lot about weird things.

I love foreign languages. Especially Spanish and French. I can read and write a little, but suck at speaking.

I am good at dispensing advice, however, not so great at taking it.

I come across as more patient than I actually am.

I also come across nicer than I probably really am. :)

I’ve met most of my good friends on cigarette breaks or at the bar.

If I had your address, I’d send you a Christmas card.

I get bored easily.

I make lists when I am out of blog inspiration. Hopefully, it will come back soon.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Fall Stuff

October is hands-down my favorite month of the year. Lately, my days have been full.

Filled with three carved pumpkins, three more waiting for faces. iTunes playlists to blast at home and cds to groove to while on the road. My days have been filled with medicine or supplements, rather. Good food like hot-dish, soup, and frozen pizza. Dinosaurs. T-Rex and the like. Slot machines and dirty money. Warm blankets and snow. Cold beer. Hot Honey bush tea. Mountains. Mountain tunnels. Anxiety. Love. Phone calls home. New friends. Lou Reed. Birthday cards I have forgotten to send out. Failed yoga. Flo’s diner dash. My days have been filled with visits to Hobby Lobby. Therapy. Funky, colorful dreams I could take a bite out of. Long hair. Halloween costumes. Novels. A bicycle in the living room. A new couch and an old coffee table. Berlin. The broken Taurus that has gotten me so far. Good sleep. Fall-scented candles. Slice and bake cookies.

I cannot wait to see what November brings!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Old Souls and Free Spirits

It takes me 45 minutes to get to and from work these days. I don’t mind most of the time because I like to sing with the car radio and the views are pretty. It’s nice to have that time to myself to think about everything or nothing, however the canyon road moves me.

When I was growing up my dad cleaned on Sunday mornings. To make the task go by faster he would play his far out records. Records my mom came to refer to as his “boing-boing” music because of the wild melodies and the raucous resonance. The record player console was in the dining room where the sun caught the glass from the patio.

Once in a while, the old man would bestow upon me the great responsibility of choosing the cleaning music. Picking out a record is the first recollection music I have. When it was my turn to choosethe music, without fail, I would carefully slide the enthralling LP out of a box. I always found the record with children like me on the cover and was delighted. It was the first piece of art I thought was truly beautiful, even then. I was haunted by the sea-children climbing on rocks for many years. Much later, I realized the album was Led Zeppelin’s Houses of the Holy.

My job was to dust with Windex, and I carefully sprayed every surface more than liberally and loved the smell always taking great care to get every spot on the coffee table. It was a special treat when my mother would have me dust all of her fragile pieces in the china cabinet. The sun would gleam on the clean glass and it made me happy. My dad loved the album. As he cleaned, he probably thought about everything or nothing, however the record moved him.

About three years later, I tagged along with my dad to the car wash to help him wash the Ford Econoline before we headed East for Christmas vacation. I was probably eight when we took this small voyage. I was always his little tag-along kid on these small errands. “Crimson and Clover” by Tommy James and Shondells started to play on the oldies station. We sang along and after the song was over, my dad told me about how innovative that song was in it’s time. I didn’t really know what he was talking about, but I felt important because he always spoke to me like I was a grown-up.

As we drove home from the car wash, we listened to more oldies and were happy. I was eight and my young mind was thinking about everything of nothing. When Christmas season comes around, I always throw “Crimson and Clover” into the music mix with all of the Christmas carols.

I grew fast, as kids do. I lived with my parents when I was nineteen and unfortunately, did not have many friends with the same music taste. When the Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young tour came to St. Paul, Minnesota, I had no friends volunteering to check out the show with me. My dad bought us tickets and it was the first time the two of us went to a concert together.

The show was stunning. I was so happy. That night we spoke about everything and nothing, however Neil Young moved us. I still have the ticket stub in a box of mementos.

My dad and I have always had music in common. There were teenage years when it was hard to relate to one another and it seemed the space between what we thought and knew was a million miles. More years have passed and now I am in my twenties, and he is in his fifties. The miles are now space and distance between our doorsteps. He came to visit this last week and it is not too hard to catch up these days. All we need to do is throw a CD into the boom box and visit at the house, put a quarter into the jukebox while sitting on a barstool, or listen to the radio on a car trip and the time and distance doesn’t seem to matter anymore. We still talk about everything and nothing and in these conversations we are happy.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Bobaloo, this one goes out to you...

Yesterday marked my one year wedding anniversary with my husband. I am generally not very good with the mushy-gushy and to be honest I felt a lot of relief yesterday, as in yay! we did it. With almost seven years of togetherness under our belts, this last year has certainly been the most strange and the most wonderful.

We have seen each other through job changes and encouraged one another to be better. A gigantic move there, a gigantic move back and the long stretches of road in between. Broken cars, broken hearts, life, death, and what goes on in between. We watched our patio garden go from brown and lifeless to beautiful and fruitful. We have seen one another drunk and happy and sober and sad and dealt with everything life had for us in between. We have stuck together for the amazing and the ugly of this last year and the normal in between.

We were married in a little mountain ceremony in Boulder. It was everything I could ask for in that it was outside, not fancy, and “us.” My little brother did a reading we picked out and I think it still holds true:

"An anonymous text from the Tradition says that, in life, each person can take one of two attitudes: to build or to plant. The builders might take years over their tasks, but one day, they finish what they’re doing. Then they find they’re hemmed in by their own walls. Life loses its meaning when the building stops.

Then there are those who plant. They endure storms and all the many vicissitudes of the seasons, and they rarely rest. But, unlike a building, a garden never stops growing. And while it requires the gardener’s constant attention, it allows life for the gardener to be a great adventure.

Gardeners always recognize one another, because they know in the history of each plant lies the growth of the whole world."

-Paulo Coelho (Brida)

Monday, August 24, 2009

Monday, Monday

I love Mondays these days. Mondays are now my "Fridays." Needless to say, I am a very happy camper today.
I am happy to see the summer come to an end. I am looking forward to fall even though I have to take the semester off from school. Maybe I'll sign up for guitar lessons or something. I like the feeling of being expected to show up somewhere once a week.
Any ideas for a new hobby to take up for the next five months?

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

The Most Wonderful Grandma of All

When I was young I was terrified of my dad’s mother, Grandma J. From very early on I found her to be loud, critical, and brash. I remember packing my Wuzzles bag for holiday trips to Eau Claire, Wisconsin and when I found out we were headed to her house I would howl and cry because I always wanted to visit my Grandma Cille first.

The apprehension for these visits didn’t die down until I was in my late teens. My brothers and I would sleep in her living room, the two of them on the floor in sleeping bags and me on the couch. When my older brother and I were teenagers we had mastered the art of sleeping in and had every intention of doing so while spending Christmas vacation at Grandma’s. Every year, without fail, Grandma J. would turn the oldies station on early in the morning blaring Christmas carols that stopped the sugar plums and fairies in our dreams dead in their tracks. These holiday carols would be after a night of hearing her wind-up clock every hour on the hour and the fuzz of her police radio coming from the hallway.

Everytime we went to see her I was asked, “Are you still one of those vegetarians? You must not get enought iron.” or told, “With your eye makeup like that, you look like one of those burlesque girls.” That’s my favorite Grandma J.-ism. Years later, I now take it as a compliment.

Things changed when I was seventeen. I had to do a school project that involved interviewing an elder for a oral storytelling project. My dad pulled me out of school and we drove an hour and a half to go see her. In all of my growing up, I had never once wondered why she was the way was or what made her tick. That day I found out what she was made of, and came to appreciate how strong she had to be and hoped that a lot of her genes were passed to me.

When I graduated from high school I found myself taking little roadtrips to go see her here and there. I’d pick her up and we’d go to the buffet for lunch and she would introduce me to her friends and seem so proud to show her grandkid off. I miss having lunch with her, I hate that I am so far away.

I spoke with her on the telephone today and it was so good to hear her little voice. These days, she seems more gentle and soft spoken. I don’t think it’s the age, I think it’s because she knows me now. Grandma J. keeps me posted on the family, recites Norwegian words from her youth to me, and speaks honestly about how hard it is to grow old and lose the people you love.

Some days while at work, the church plays the same song as her wind-up clock. Immediately my brain goes back to her house. I think of the way the flowered tin of crayons smelled, how there were always fig neutons in the cookie jar, and her perfume bottles and lipstick in the bathroom.

Every year that passes she makes it a point to warn me that it will probably be her last year on this Earth. I know better though, she’s tough as nails. I think it’s her way of preparing me for life without her, which makes her the most wonderful grandma of all.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Egg Salad

My "weekend" now falls on Tuesday and Wednesday so there's not always a whole lot going on. I have turned to Netflix and have been enjoying a bunch of Audrey Tatau movies. Somehow I don't feel like I am being lazy if I am watching a movie in a different language.

Also, I have been watching the first season of "Man v. Food." I want this dude's job. Today, while wolfing down a Jimmy John's sub I got to thinking...

If you entered a food-eating contest where you won by out-eating a competitor in an hour, what kind of food would you make you a champion?

I'd probably go with egg salad. Not necessarily because I like it, I just think I could eat a ton of it without getting sick.

Weird. Somehow writing this post has led me to Wiki Brain Salad Surgery. Interesting stuff.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Hello Again

Hello Again. Remember that Shelly Long movie? I used to watch it all the time when I was a kid. Weird. Anyway, I am glad to be back and during my little break I have been enjoying the summer blogging of others. Anyway, let me get you up to speed.

Where to start? The last couple of months have been full of a lot of great, some good, and a little bad. After the move back from California, I have been focusing my energy on getting my Colorado life back on track. It's strange, I am still unable to look at the whole "California" experience objectionably and figure out the why? of it all. I am still unsure what to think of the whole thing, but for now I am doing what a wise dude suggested and am not looking back; moving forward. Easier said than done sometimes, right?

I have never considered myself to be lucky in a good fortune kind of way, however, somehow we were able to get back here safe and sound and get our apartment back and find jobs quickly. In between getting back and my new job I was able to take a nine-day trip to visit my folks and friends in Minnesota and it was good. My parents are wholly amazing and they mended my spirit, always seeing my life from a different panorama than I do.

The job I have now is wonderful, it's exactly what I wanted from employment. I get to walk around, chat with people, fix things, break things, and make people smile. It's up in the hills where I have to drive through three mountain tunnels to get there, which makes me a little nervous, but it's beautiful.

After a couple of weeks of working there, I had a mentor-in-training say, "If you want to walk around in circles for the next three years and wait for a lightbulb to go off, you can by all means do that here." Seriously, on some days that's my job description. Holy buckets! My entire adult life I've been walking in circles waiting for a lightbulb to go off, and now I get paid to do that? Life is hilarious. And if there's a god, he/she's a regular barrel of laughs too!

Well, I'll be back to regular posts now. It's good to see you, my friends.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Hiatus

I need to take a break from the blog for a while.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Unemployment is the new Staycation

Unemployment is weird.  It’s been many years since I haven’t had a job and if I wasn’t so sure I am going to get a positive callback later this week, I would be a little more freaked about the situation.

Last week was very bizarre and I didn’t quite know what to do with myself during the days.  I was very happy to get two calls about possible jobs.  One interview did not happen at all and I went to the second one on Friday.  The interview went well and I expect to hear back this week about a job that starts on the First of June.  In the meantime, I am still sending resumes out because, you never know.

The weekend was great.  I was able to meet up with some really good friends who I missed during my time in California.  Bobaloo and I went down to the Buffalo Rose on Saturday to listen to a band and meet up with friends.  There were all sorts of folks (of the biker variety) that we haven’t seen since before the winter.  It was like everyone came out of hibernation.

Yesterday was a lazy day, but amidst the movie-watching and lounging I was able to finish a good book (for the first time in months) and get together a plan on what to do on a day to day basis until I find a job.

Today, kicked off a new start for me.  I started another book, went for a jog, did some chores, sent some resumes, watered the plants, sat outside, and even watched some Tyra.  Her show sucks.

Here’s to a well-rounded day without a dime spent!  

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Home Again, Home Again

I am back to Colorado and boy, is it weird.  I returned last Friday and for a few days everything was a whirlwind that has finally settled down a bit.  After a lot of packing and unpacking I finally found my camera cable, so here are some pictures.
The groovaru.
Sometimes you need to know when to follow.
The check engine light came on two states too soon.
On the road again...
Home.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Greetings from Las Vegas...

Las Vegas, New Mexico that is. Yeah, it's about as exciting as it sounds. I am pretty sure if I was in the other one in Nevada I would not be blogging. I have not been to the one in Nevada yet, but I am pretty sure it's a little more happening. Bobaloo and I packed all of our stuff up yesterday and put all of our necessities in the U-Haul and everything else in storage. We were able to get on the road and make it to Phoenix last night. To get out of the state of California we had to go through some mountains which was terrifying because the brakes in my car are not up to snuff. There was a nasty accident too that freaked me out. It's extremely strange to be driving in California and Arizona. There are border patrol agents everywhere. When I was driving to California a couple of months ago I had to stop four or five times at checkpoints. Last night we only had to stop once. Border Patrol agents assholes. And while I am a fan of dogs, I don't appreciate their scary dogs sniffing my car. We made it to Phoenix and stayed in a hotel. Today we finished driving through Arizona and were making our way through New Mexico when we decided to stop for the night. So, we are enjoying the luxuries of cable television and continental breakfast. I love cable and I love breakfast. A lot. By this time tomorrow, I will be in my own bed at home. I am pretty excited about that. This trip has certainly been interesting. You wouldn't believe all of the things you can buy from the side of the road in Arizona and New Mexico. That's another post entirely. Well, that's all. Good night.

Monday, April 27, 2009

The Weekend Happenings.

Well, this past weekend is my last one in San Diego. It was filled with all sorts of fun and adventure and unfortunately, not a whole lot of packing. On Friday, we hung out at a friendly bar called the Aero-Club which has been our regular hangout while being here. There are always some interesting characters in there so it was nice to yuk it up and stay up too late.

Saturday was a lazy day from staying up way too late. Amongst all of the laying around and doing nothing I managed to muster up the fortitude to reactivate my Netflix account so I could fully bask in being a bum. After an Ed O’Neill (Al Bundy) movie and Chinese food, I was out.

Yesterday was fun. Bobaloo and I headed up to Carlsbad to have a delicious brunch with my sister-in-law and nephew. I am sad to be moving away from them. I have really enjoyed getting to spend so much time with them while out here. No trip to Carlsbad would be complete without a trip to Dini’s By the Sea. So, we headed there and had a few cocktails and enjoyed the sunshine. After that we went home for some more Netflix fun.

I have two days left of work. Two days! We have a few days to get all of our stuff packed and ready to go and by this weekend we will be back in Colorado. I cannot believe it.

Hope you had a great weekend!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Just Ducky

So if you are bored this weekend and have stumbled upon Jillie Side Up, you have found me at a funky fork in my life. Do you know what I enjoy about being a grownup? That we all are in various stages of having our ducks in a row.

There is the type of grownup who from an early age had life pretty well figured out. They dreamed their dream and went and got it. Those people’s ducks are fully aligned. I have a couple of best friends who are this type of grownup and I am always amazed at their tenacity and discipline.

There is the type of grownup whose ducks are all there, kind of in formation, and for the most part swimming with some direction. They made it from point A to point B, but not by the means of a straight line but rather a curvy path. I have friends who are of this variety too. What I admire about them is their ability to get to point B while having some fun and doing cool shit on the way.

Then, there is the grownup like me. I have ducks. And they’re really awesome ducks, but kind of rebellious and can never seem to get in a row. I am eleven days late in making my birthday resolution for this year, so here it goes. This year is the year I reign in my ducks and tell them what’s what and where we are going. If all goes well, next April 13th, we will be having a duck-themed birthday party and will be celebrating how pretty my little row of ducks is.

Slapdash San Diego Thoughts (in no particular order)

My time in San Diego is winding down. I am excited to be all packed up and to leave. I am not excited however, to actually do the packing or drive twenty-one hours. It’s strange how mobile I consider myself in my head; in reality I have a lot of stuff. I can’t help it, I am sentimental and it is easily to acquire a menagerie of furniture, books, photo albums, and clothes. Stuff. It’s weird how much I enjoy my possessions. Not that it is treasure from Pier One Imports or anything fancy like that. When I first came out here, besides my husband, the thing I missed the most about Colorado was my couch. I loved that sucker.

I am happy we were able to check out some stuff while living here. In some ways it has been like a weird two month vacation except I go to work.

Do you know what I find most fascinating about San Diego? No matter where you stand in the city, there are dozens of frozen yogurt shops in a two-mile radius. As a fan of frozen yogurt, that is amazing. That shit doesn’t happen in the Midwest or in Colorado. Sure you have your Dairy Queen, Coldstone Creamery, and whatnot but it just isn’t the same. I am really going to miss that.

I enjoy missing things; it means there was some joy or love worth checking out and worth being missed. I am glad that I am going to miss San Diego a little bit. Not just the frozen yogurt, the Trader Joe’s, or Ikea. The hustle and bustle of the city is great. Although there is a little more bustle for my taste than there is hustle, the general vibe is awesome. I am a fan of cities that have great public transportation and SD is awesome, trains, trolleys, busses galore plus most areas are pretty pedestrian-friendly. Yield for the peds, man.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Happy Day, Earth

I am generally a fan of holidays where it is expected of me to have cocktails. Christmas? Celebrate the birth with some egg nog. Easter? Celebrate the rising with some wine. Fourth of July? Have a few cold ones and watch the fireworks. St. Patrick’s Day? Self-explanatory. Earth Day? Why not?

It is great that we have a day dedicated to pondering where we need to make changes for a better world. This past year has found me eating more locally, using reusable shopping bags, and cutting back on consumption with limited trips to Target.

Where I could use more green in my life in my intake of beverages. Wine, beer, rum, and Coca-Cola all come in glass or aluminum and make for much to be recycled in our household. When we lived in Boulder, on occasion we would get mead from Redstone Meadery and drink like Vikings. They sell their mead in reusable and fashionable blue bottles. When you returned with your bottle they would refill it at a discount price. What an idea! I love it!

I think I am going to look for some other useful ideas when it comes to cans and bottles. I am already planning a Heineken Christmas tree this year out of bottles. Also, the internet is amazing. Look what else you can make. I think I am going to try the beer chandelier and the radio for the lounge.

Here is an interesting article on the topic of beer bottle vs. can. Which is better for the environment?

Can you think of more eco-friendly ways of getting your drink on?

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Mussels, Mollusks, and Movies

I have not been feeling very creative as of late. My thoughts have been a gumbo of mumbo jumbo recently. Having life be absolute disarray might have something do with it. I have been doing a lot of reading though, sometimes it’s nice to sit back and read about the drama in other people’s lives.

I leave San Diego at the end of the month and am very excited to be going back home. This little adventure hasn’t been a total loss though, we’ve missed three blizzards in Denver and the pool at our apartment complex will open up at the end of May.

My husband brought up the idea that we’re pool kind of people. Not ocean people, not lake people, on occasion river people, but for the most part pool people. It’s totally true. I am not quite sure what to make of that information. I prefer to be a big fish in a small chlorinated pool? I guess if I am wearing my shiny swimsuit, I look more like a mermaid or a shiny mussel shell. So I guess I am a shiny mollusk in a chlorinated pool. Hmmm... Anyway, I am looking forward to the summer and getting all of our pool toys out and enjoying the sunshine.

I have been enjoying my time out here a lot more. Now that I know we’re going home it is easier to be worry-free. I have given my two week notice already, and have never been so happy to leave a job in my life. Seriously, it’s that bad. Last weekend we went out to dinner and a movie which was fun. We go to the movies once a year, so it’s a big deal. We also took a drive up the coast stopping at a fun little bar called, Dini’s By the Sea in Carlsbad where we drank cool drinks in the sunshine on the patio and met some interesting people.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Two Weeks Notice

Remember the movie The Wizard of Oz? I loved it when I was a kid. I knew every word and every song from watching it over and over. It was a close second to Annie. I always shuddered during the parts with the flying monkeys, laughed at the teeny munchkins, and marveled at Glenda the good witch.

In less than two weeks I am going home. Much like the movie, my life in Denver became black and white and I went on a search for Technicolor. What better place to do that than California? Everything is bright, new, and different. I have encountered tin men, scarecrows, and the like out here. I was swept up in a necessary twister of befuddlement and amongst the budding plot lines, was smacked into a harsh reality.

I remember a part at the end of the movie when Dorothy says something like, “I know now if I ever go looking for my heart’s desire, I don’t need to go any further than my own backyard.”

That is how I would sum up the lessons learned on this misadventure. Does life get boring and monotonous sometimes? Yep. Is part of being a grownup dealing with it? Unfortunately, yep.

P.S. In other news, I logged into my blogger account this morning and all of the blogs I read disappeared from my queue and somehow the internet erased me as a follower from the blogs I read. Darn it! I didn’t mean to “un-follow” you; it might take some time for me to find everyone again.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

It happened.

I am now closer to thirty than to twenty.

One year older, and a hell-of-a-lot wiser.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Beware of Foreshadowing

So, a proverbial change of heart has taken place and some decisions have been made. I called my dad today to wish him a happy Easter and to tell him that after a lot of thought, we are moving back to Denver. I was expecting for him to advise me to stick it out and hang in there. But instead, he said something along the lines of at least we have the courage to make mistakes. And more importantly, life is full of ups and downs and the key is to have more ups than downs. Sometime during the three and a half years of living in Denver, it became home without us even realizing it. We have gotten our apartment back, now all we have to do is get our lives back. Hopefully, there will be many ups in our future. Happy Easter!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Looking for Answers

I am full of questions. I cannot help it; there is just so much strange information out in the world pleading for me to get my informative hands on it. My inquiries know no confines.

I tackle global issues. How far would we have to go in the ocean to reach international waters? I ponder diversity. Why are there never white people working at sushi restaurants? I delve into holy contemplation. Why do we celebrate Easter, again, and where do the eggs come in? Even cuisine is not safe from my inquest. Who came up with the idea of frozen yogurt? Did they have a beef with ice cream or something? Why has no one invented beer flavored frozen yogurt? I’d eat that.

More often than not, my husband shoulders the brunt of my queries in the car on the way to somewhere. After attempting an answer the following conversation usually takes place:

Him: I guess I don’t know, wait, how am I supposed to know?

Me: I don’t know. You know lots of stuff. I thought maybe you’d have read it somewhere.

Him: Where would I have read about the creation of frozen yogurt?

Me: I don’t know. I was just wondering. Maybe you’ll read about it somewhere in the future and remember that I was wondering.

At this point he usually just shakes his head and we move on.

The strange part is that I don’t necessarily need an answer and it is not likely that I will not wiki it when we get home. In my opinion though, they are valid questions to throw out there. Someday I am going to win a big screen TV in a bar trivia competition or something. We’ll see who’s laughing then.

The stranger part is I have a picture in my head of my husband reading in a waiting room and learning the answers to all of my questions in some magazine. I wonder what magazine it is.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Let The Sunshine In

The trouble began right before we moved to San Diego. Bobaloo and I have had a barrage of bad luck. We have been thwacked by the world more times than I care to count. It started with Bobaloo's identity being stolen in Denver followed by major car repairs that were not in the moving budget.

I came out here and found an apartment that is too small, had my identity stolen, and last week had to buy a new starter for the old Taurus. Not to mention the stress of Bobaloo looking for a job and the both of us trying to adapt to a new place and a new life and missing Denver quite a bit. It's been a rough run.

We have been doing our best to stay positive and have been doing everything karmicly (I don't think that's a word) possible to turn things around.

Here is some awesomeness amidst the calamity:
  • I get the biggest kick out of the weather forecast on the news. Here is an example of a typical forecast: Today we're expecting it to be nice, tomorrow we are expecting another beautiful day, but look out, the temps are going to plummet to 55 on Saturday. Ha!

  • Pacific and Mission beaches have the best people watching in town.

  • We had our maiden voyage to Trader Joe's last weekend. Wow. There was no possible way for me to contain my excitement and focus there. We found such low-priced delights as vodka, green bean chips, and soy chorizo. Soy chorizo! If that is out there, think of the possibilities! The chorizo was muy delicioso by the way.

  • The Little Italy farmers market is charming. It is quaint and there are all sorts of fresh goodies and samples. I love samples.

  • The Aero-Club Bar is a friendly neighborhood joint we found last week with good peeps and good booze.

  • We mysteriously have cable. I do not know how long it will last but I am enjoying every second of it.

  • I get to see my sis-in-law and nephew on a bi-weekly basis. It is neat to see the little guy trying to say new things and getting big. Plus, I get to look forward to being an aunt to forthcoming baby two.

  • Last but not least, it is April and I have a tan.
P.S. How does the song go? Is it "let the sushine in" or "let the sun shine in" with a space between "sun" and "shine?" Hmmm... I suppose it doesn't really matter.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Swimming Lessons

Living in San Diego, Bobaloo and I live quite close to the ocean now. I’m talking under a mile. When we made the decision to move here I had dreams of hanging by the ocean and taking it in on a hot day that includes picnics, Frisbee, tunes, the whole nine yards.

Bobaloo and I were talking about going to Pacific Beach to hang out this weekend. Only now, has the realization that I cannot swim set in. And while the ocean is beautiful, I am terrified of it. Not to mention shark attacks.

Growing up my family vacationed in Florida twice. Both times we stayed in hotels next to the beach where we swam in shark-free, five-foot pools next to the ocean. My dad would not let us go into the sea over our knees because of the omnipotent undertow, thus, my irrational fear of the dark deep-sea.

I think about this and the birthday resolutions I am going to make in a couple of weeks and am thinking it might be time to sign up for swimming lessons at the local community center.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Lord Hornblower

So, this last weekend my little bro was in town for spring break. This kid has seen and done everything by the age of 17 due to my older bro and me living in awesome locales. I was kind of stumped on what to do with him and also a little short on fun money.

For $25 apiece, I booked tickets for us to cruise the 26 miles around San Diego Harbor. When we got on the boat we found chairs for the three of us on the left side of the boat, or port side if you will, for all of my pirate readers. Ahoy, by the way. The whole tour was of everything on the right side of the boat. Oops!

We saw Diego the whale’s shadow. The poor thing is stuck in the harbor. Who gets to name the whales anyway? I have to say, it is kind of a lame name for a whale. If I had a whale, I woud probably name him Walter. What would you name your whale?

Halfway through the tour, we found a table on the sun deck where we were able to indulge in a beer and some chips. Some awesome chips. Chips in the shape of a whale’s tale. I took pictures. And as soon as I find my camera cable I will upload them. Anyway, we proceeded to get sunburned, which was awesome. Because it was March.

After the boat ride, we topped the day off with some pizza, frozen yogurt, and the movie Anchorman. I think my bro got a good taste of San Diego.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Whose got the funk?

I haven’t felt like myself the last two weeks. With the move, Bobaloo going back and forth, and the newness of San Diego I feel like I am in panic mode or survival mode. You wouldn’t know it from the outside; I appear to be very cool, calm, and collected. Well, as cool as I can be.

Lately, just getting through the day expends so much disorderly energy that I a have nothing left in my tank when I get home. I just want to sleep and not think about anything. I am not sad, but I am not altogether happy either. I guess, just sort of existing.

Realistically, everything is fine. I have no more or no less worries than I did in Denver. Maybe it is all of the change.

Hopefully, this weekend will snap me out of my funk. My little brother Kyle is in town for spring break and we are headed to the beach!

Friday, March 20, 2009

Swedish Stuff

Tonight after work, I get to go to the wonder that is Ikea. When I lived in Minnesota there was an Ikea right by the Mall of America. It was blue and yellow and glorious. Three years in Colorado were Ikea-free. Now, I am happy to announce there a store in San Diego containing a whole lot of Swedish goodness and I will happily betray my Norwegian ancestry and revel somewhere between bedding and kitchenware.

Oh. All the stuff! I love stuff. Tonight’s adventure is to result in shelving, lots of shelving. Apparently I way underestimated how much stuff we have and our apartment is tiny. I am talking, tiny. I am about halfway finished with the unpacking. Bobaloo is getting his car from Colorado and I hope to have the place lookin’ sweet by the time he comes home to San Diego.

Aside from unpacking, this weekend includes another trip to Little Italy’s farmers market for groceries. The hunt for the perfect slice of blog-worthy pizza will also continue.

Pictures to come soon.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

3 Weeks

The wait is almost over. On Saturday my beloved is scheduled to arrive after a long day of driving. I miss him, I miss my bed, I miss my stuff. I moved from Colorado three weeks ago. Some days have gone by quickly, and other days have been excruciatingly difficult and long. Nevertheless, I cannot wait for Bobaloo to get here. I am very excited for him to see our new teensy weensy apartment in the middle of the city.

This week took a turn for the better at work and I am feeling more comfortable there. The drive to and from work is short and I can take walks by the ocean on my lunch break. After work on Monday, I found a neat little bar downtown. I have also gone to the beach and found the boardwalk in the harbor. Over all, I consider this week a success and my best since moving here.

Tomorrow night I am going to watch the sunset at the harbor and Saturday I plan to go to the farmer's market in Little Italy. My goal is to enjoy the free time now, because once those boxes arrive on Saturday there is loads of unpacking and decorating to do.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

10 Questions

This meme came from Lora's awesome blog.

This is the famous "Ten Questions" as popularized by James Lipton on "Inside the Actor's Studio," originated by French television personality Bernard Pivot, after the Proust Questionnaire.

1. What is your favorite word?

Anticipation

I am filled with anticipation. This word invokes a lot of excitement, to me it means the good kind of waiting. Hope, I guess. As in, I am anticipating your arrival. I am full of anticipation. Anticipation. Anticipation. Anticipation.

2. What is your least favorite word?

Supposedly

I can't stand this word because many people mispronounce it, which is very irritating. Argh.

3. What turns you on?

Music

Whether at home or at a show, I love music. It has the ability to transform any situation or occasion.

4. What turns you off?

Boredom

I cannot stand being bored. I am one of those people who constantly need to be entertained all. the. time.

5. What sound do you love?

Happiness

I love the sound of people having fun whether it be in glasses clanking at bars, people cheering at shows, friends gabbing over coffee, etc. When I hear people having fun and enjoying life, it makes me want to have fun and enjoy life too.

6. What sound do you hate?

Burping.

I know it's natural, but it just grosses me out.

7. What is your favorite curse word?

Currently, bitch-ass.

As in, if your bitch-ass could return my call at your earliest convenience, that'd be great.

8. What profession other than yours would you like to attempt?

Dentist

Ever since I was a kid, I've wanted to take a whack at dentistry. If it weren't for so much bitch-ass schooling, I might have given it a try.

9. What profession would you not like to do?

Daycare Worker

I like kids, but I think I would lose my sanity.

10. If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gate?

Happy hour starts at three.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Personally

I am happy with the decision move to San Diego thus far. The climate and the few things I have checked out are phenomenal. I have met a few characters out here who are warm and friendly.

It's been a little rough at the new job. I am weighing my situation and options. Yesterday, panic attacks ensued, things went very sour very quickly.

I received a few pep talks yesterday. After a rough Monday, I went to get a beer and met this gentleman from India who advised that as long as I had a clear concience I am doing the right thing.

My concience is a little cloudy. I feel a little uncomfortable doing what I do. My dad said to keep a stiff upper lip and see the writing on the wall.

At this point, I am doing my best to hang in there and am trying not take shit from anyone. Which is totally not my personality. I take things personally.

Maybe I should go work at Seaworld. Shamu is awesome.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Routines

It is hard to start new routines. I am in a quasi-routine right now. Both feet are in California but my heart is still in Colorado. It's different. I am alone and have all the time in the world to write, but I do not. I haven't found my writing routine yet; my ritual.

I used to have a job that slowed down mid-morning and I would write my entries up and post them at around the same time everyday. They were quality entries (at least to me) and I could not wait until it was time to get started on that day's entry. My situation at my new job is quite different. No blogging allowed.

Although it doesn't matter too much, I feel like I have so much in my head and cannot figure out where and how to get it all out. I am having a hard time differentiating between if I am stressed out and anxious or if I am loca en la cabeza.

Perhaps, when I have furniture it will be a little more conducive to writing. I miss my couch.

On a brighter note, I am exploring. Getting around town with no worries is a pretty awesome feeling. Our little apartment is cute and the middle of the city. I am excited to be a city dweller. The noises, the hustle and bustle, the street parking, everything! I was able to take a two-minute drive last night to the harbor and look at the boats and the ocean. What a sight. I am excited for all of the upcoming adventures when Bobaloo gets here. Until then, tonight I begin the hunt for the perfect slice of pizza.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Better Now

After a week of sulking, I am better now. The week went by quickly and I am getting the hang of everything at work. I was told to go to hell and called the c-word by some callers, but I didn't take it personally. Over my lunch break I drive down the palm tree-lined roads and go to a park next to the ocean. Awesome! This weekend I am going up to North County to stay with my sister-in-law and nephew which will be a nice change from hanging out with myself. I am not sure what exactly we will be doing, but it is nice to hang out on the patio with the little guy and play. One more week until Bobaloo and my stuff arrive. I am getting pretty excited for him to get here so we can do all sorts of exploring.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

California Dreamin'

I have never lived alone before and can say for certain that I am not digging it. On the one hand, I am proud to have accomplished many "grown-up" tasks by myself, on the other hand it sucks. Bobaloo is in Colorado for a couple of weeks and I am here in California. I found an apartment yesterday and moved in today. It's going to be a long two weeks. Let me paint a picture. Me on an air mattress in the living room huddled around the computer eating cheese and crackers and drinking a coke. An empty apartment aside from a few clothes, a shower liner, and some food. I bought a CD player clock radio because I didn't think to bring a TV. Boy, is it quiet around here. Aah. The Californian dream. I love the palm trees, but miss my husband. Hopefully the work week will keep my mind busy so time flies by.

Friday, February 27, 2009

I am officially in California on an adventure that began six days ago.  I will be blogging with more frequency when I have a place to live.
Here are some things I've learned the past six days:
  1. It doesn't matter how old you are, sometimes you still need your mommy.
  2. Just because you've gotten A's in school doesn't mean you get an A in life.
  3. Cacti are really, really cool in the desert.
  4. Marriage is awesome and it sucks to be away from your spouse for an extended period of time.
  5. I drove forty miles on a five-lane highway, had a rough first day of work, and made it back to where I am staying without taking a Xanax, crying, or being scared.  Sometimes confidence peeks out when you least expect it and more importantly, when you most need it.
  6. Just because technically you don't have home doesn't mean you still can't miss it.
  7. California is as beautiful as I remember.
Well, I should have time to tell all my stories this weekend.  Later!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

On Coffee

The perfect cup of coffee does not taste like coffee at all. It is filled with caramel, chocolate, and topped with whipped cream. It comes in a white paper cup with a hole in the black lid. The whipped cream oozes skillfully out of the hole delightfully tempting my taste buds.

On Friday mornings, my husband and I drive separately to the local coffee shop. It gives a chance to smoke a couple of cigarettes, enjoy the delicious goodness that is Kona coffee and most importantly, we get a chance to have a nice chat before heading off in our separate ways to face the day.

The smell inside the coffee shop is superb. The shop is not too bright too early. Occasionally there is a line although it is not so bad because everything smells so delicious. The baristas are pleasant but not overly cheery; they have started to use my first name. This is nice. There are brunette coffee beans for sale in candy machines that are lined against the chocolate colored wall. Animal paintings are for sale and surround coffee and teapots that are scattered on shelves.

Every so often, we will make coffee at home and I do not indulge in a cup during the workday. Fridays are an indulgence, a delicacy in our world of hurried breakfasts and Coca-Cola. This Friday morning ritual is a great reminder to take time out to enjoy the morning and a great cup of caffeinated splendor.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Twitter-pated

Technology can be scary. It makes life so easy but still it is hard to take the leap and know what is truly the latest and the greatest. It took me a couple of attempts to get a blog up because I was afraid of putting myself out there. Forty posts in, I feel I am comfortable.

I tried Twitter yesterday for forty-eight minutes and felt that it crossed some sort of boundary. Am I really interesting enough to follow 24-7? Probably not. Facebook, blogging, and an email account are enough for right now.

How do you feel about Twitter?

Monday, February 16, 2009

Dwellings

I am feeling a wave of anxiety with the start of a new week. It is the last week in Denver.

Yesterday, Bobaloo and I went to say goodbye to Boulder. It is where we started in Colorado. When I look back at me when we first came here, I was so scared of everything and everyone. There have been many changes. I was able to find the closest Target on the third day of living in Boulder, for the next two weeks everywhere I went I mapped out by its proximity to Target. Now, I can find any Target in a twenty-mile radius.

It was the first time we lived together, my first home without my parents, and the start of many fine adventures. I will miss Pearl Street and the 470 square foot apartment we shared, called “The Shoebox.” Our first summer was filled with afternoons with Gary the Squirrel, grilling, and we started what would become a three and a half year Yahtzee tournament.

We lived in the “Chicken Coop” after Boulder. It has been torn down along with all the bad memories of the place that could do no right. We met many great neighbors in this place. We were able to walk around downtown Golden whether to see the creek or get a beer and play air hockey. I look back at that time and remember how excited I was to start school and Bobaloo finally got the hang of fly-fishing. This was the year my brother went to Iraq for the first time, I became an aunt, and we went and saw John Prine for my birthday.

The place we live in now is my favorite and I will miss it a lot. The apartment has no name yet. I love the two patios, especially the one overlooking the pool. We are minutes from Red Rocks where we have seen Widespread Panic every summer. There is a lot of sunlight in the windows. It is the first place we unpacked every box and decorated. We have the proximity of the mountains and the city. This apartment has seen us check out the Denver scene, learn to snowshoe, host our first Christmas, and get married. We have made excellent friends at the local watering hole, and have had great neighbors, aside from the yapping dog.

Goodbye Colorado. Not forever, just for now.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day!

Bobaloo and I are not big celebrators of Valentine's Day.  Today, we are having some cocktails and making some food at home.  But, in honor of the day of love here are seven out of a thousand reasons I love my husband.  If you have a propensity for getting nauseous at the sight of schmaltz, you might want to skip this post!
Bobaloo has the best smile.  It can be empathetic, charming, and goofy depending on which one is needed.
Only he can make me laugh until I cry.  I love his sense of humor and Carl the Curmudgeon.
Because he is adventurous, our life is never boring.  I am so excited for our next adventure.
After we got married I didn't think anything would change.  It turns out I love him more everyday.
Living with him, I have found him to be the best cook ever.  He is very talented with calzones and pasta with white sauce.
Once I told my best friend I'd only get married if I found someone who loved music more than I did.  I met him and married him and his c.d. collection.
Our song is "You Made Me Unlonely"  by John Prine.  The song is beautiful and Bobaloo has made me unlonely.