Friday, September 29, 2006

more postcrossing goodness!!

Woohoo!! Apparently we forgot to check the mail yesterday. Dan got it this morning, and I woke up to THIS on the bed next to me! Yay!

I signed up for a travelling notebook group on the postcrossing forums a while back, and the whole thing kind of fizzled. The idea was that we would each buy a small notebook, decorate it, and send it on in a circle. Each of our notebooks would travel all over the world and then come back to us. Along the way other members of the group would write in the book, add pictures, stories, etc., showing what life was like in their corner of the world. It's been long enough that I had pretty much given up on the whole thing, but then along came this lovely package from runswithscissors in New Zealand this morning!! Yay!! Thank you Kyleigh!! Your notebook is really nice! I'll add my little world to it this weekend, and send it along on it's journey. Sorry for the blurry pictures, but Im in a hurry and my camera is not cooperating this morning. Maybe I'll fix em later....

This is the cover of her notebook:

and the postcard and Maori fish hook necklace she sent along for me:

Wednesday, September 27, 2006


So. I picked up some books at a local second hand shop last week. I have a silly obsession with books, and I collect them fiendishly. My books are some of my most prized posessions. I went in looking for a Tom Robbins book that I'd seen there before but didn't buy at the time because I didn't have spare cash on me. I love Tom Robbins. I came out with 11 books, and none of them were the one I went in for. I bought The Beach by Alex Garland, The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger, Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer, A Million Little Pieces by James Frey, One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Pictures of Hollis Woods by Patricia Reilly Giff, The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd, Snow Falling on Cedars by David Guterson, and a few books for the kids. I am weak. Books are really cheap there though! How could I pass them up?! I am excited to read every one of them.

I started in on A Million Little Pieces this morning, and it is really really really good. Already. I've only read a couple chapters, but I am quite certain just from those chapters that this will be one of my favorites. I have read a little about the controversy surrounding the book, but you know what? I don't care. So he wrote the story in the way his messed up head perceived it, or remembered it, or wants to remember it, and it's not 100% factual. Whatever. I get that. At least 90% of the books I read are 100% fictional, so what do I care if he embellished his true story a little? At least it's based on a true story. That gives it some punch. Even as some one who has no knowledge or experience when it comes to the worlds of addiction and rehab, it reads a little surreal, and it's obvious that it's not a strict factual account. He's not a scumbag for writing an interesting book. And it really is an interesting book.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Yoooouuuu caaaannnn do it at a trot, you can do it at a gallop!

You can do it real slow so your heart won't pal-pi-tate, just don't be late! Do the Puyallup!

We took the kids to the Puyallup fair yesterday, and had a blast! My youngest was so excited she was literally jumping up and down as she was telling me "Mommy, I'm having sooooo much fun!" It was expensive and crowded, but so worth it just to see the looks on their faces. We took them to the Kitsap County fair a couple times when they were younger, but they don't remember, so really their only past fair experience has been at the Baker County fair when we go to visit Dan's family, and it's so tiny it doesn't really even count as a fair. I think they were shocked and amazed at the big fair experience yesterday.

On the way there...

The loot!


Driving the autobahn...That's some speed limit, eh?

I should note here that we also went on the ferris wheel, the haunted house ride, and THE roller coaster, and I had fully intended to take pictures, but didn't. I was going to take a video of the girls on the roller coaster for the first time with my phone, but I was too busy screaming my head off and trying to keep both youngest's hiney and mine in contact with the seat. It was a challenge! We had a lot of fun. :)

There was a free Teddy Geiger and Anna Nalick concert at the fair last night. It was too loud and crowded for kids, but we did watch for a couple minutes. I love concert lights! Tonight is Hilary Duff, and Oldest is so wishing she could be there, but her concert isn't free like the rest. Go figure.

Friday, September 22, 2006

The Peace of Wild Things

When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children's lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water,
and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought of grief.
I come into the presence of still water
And I feel above me the day-blind stars waiting with their light.
For a time I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.
--Wendell Berry, Openings, 1968
(copyright, Wendell Berry, Farrar Strauss Publisher, NY, NY)


So I was laying in bed this morning trying to wake up, which is something I always struggle with. Suddenly I heard Dan in the kitchen, almost in a half whisper, "Jenny, come here, quick! Come look at this!" I nearly jumped out of my skin. In my half-conscious stupor it really seemed like he said it in that someone's-creeping-around-outside tone. Halfway curious and halfway dreading what I'd see, I stumbled quickly in to the kitchen. Apparently the girls heard him from their room too, because they appeared by my side. In the tree outside my kitchen window, there were maybe 100 tiny birds (chickadees?) jumping and playing and just generally being cute. How cool! My younger daughter says "Look at all the baby birds!" Dan explained to her that they were full grown. Then oldest says "Ha ha, a normal bird could eat those ones right up!" I do have a sadistic child.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

everything comes crashing down

I don't talk about work here. Ever. Period.
Whether I particularly enjoy my job or not, I do value it muchly, and my company enjoys their privacy, as do most.

That said, I think it's pretty safe to say I had a big personal realization at work today. WOW.

I have always been one to resist change. I HATE change. Hate is a strong word, but it's absolutely the appropriate word when it comes to how I feel about major remodels of most aspects of my life. I'd like to think I'm reasonably carefree, and even serendipitous. Open-mindedness is something I really value. The thing is, if I get into a routine, I begin to have certain expectations about that routine, and about the world around me, and it really upsets me sometimes when that gets tossed all about. This is normal and sad, I know.

So what's on my mind lately? Change.

I work for a company that likes change. There are major restructures on a pretty regular basis there. I've always moaned and groaned to myself, and gritted my teeth. I really have come to expect the worst. Even so, I've gotten used to holding on to my hat and going with it, because I don't really have any other choice.

So last week, I was moving my desk to another part of the building. We ALL were moving our desks to other parts of the building, and most were unhappy about it. I took a moment to try to count, and as near as I can figure, this was my 19th desk/office move in the 2 1/2 years I've been there. Something about that is funny to me. I now look forward to my next move, as it seems like it will be an anniversary of sorts - My 20th move!! So while we were moving, a coworker made a comment. He said that "they" say it's actually beneficial to companies to move their employees regularly. The constant change keeps things fresh, and boosts efficiency. It made sense, so I stuffed it away in the back of my head and continued my internal snarling. Smart alec!

I loved my old workspace, buy you know what? I LIKE my new one too. :)

This morning, I was talking with the girl who is now in a rather stressful position that used to be mine. She is doing well, but is still scared that everything is going to come crashing down around her, just as it seems to have for everyone else who has ever had the job. Literally. I found myself telling her that it always crashes eventually, because that's just the nature of things there (Im so nice, I know), but what she does with it and where it takes her is completely up to her. Crashing can be a good thing sometimes, and she shouldn't stress.

Wait?! What? Where did THAT come from? What the H-E-double-hockey-sticks? I had a realization. It's something I already knew, but suddenly I really feel it, and I really believe it. Change is GOOD. That which doesn't kill us really does make us stronger. I LIKE where I am now. I LIKE who I am because of the trials I've endured. I feel GOOD about myself.

Crashing is good. If I hadn't crashed and burned in the position she's in now, I wouldn't be the person I am now, and I wouldn't be happy. I was not a happy person then. I was just really good (or bad) at pretending.

We are just finishing a big move at home too. It's been painful and frustrating. I've felt so defeated by the fact that we just couldn't afford to keep our own home and had to move back to a rental. It's really bothered me. But you know what? I never did feel good about that house. I was sick over it the day I signed the papers to buy it. It just felt like something I had to do. Our new rental house feels good. It feels right. Having some financial freedom feels pretty darned good too. Sometimes sour grapes make the best grape juice.

And you know, if Dan and I hadn't crashed a couple months ago like we did, (and Boy, did we CRASH) we would be miserable together too. We've barely hung on for years and years. I resented his existence and he resented mine. That's not nice to say or easy to say, but it's the truth. Now it's like our relationship is new and fresh again. I realize finally that I really and truly value him. He stopped me as we were getting in to the car the other night after dinner with his boss, threw his arms around me, and told me he was absolutley nutso when he had questioned whether or not he wanted us, and he loves me more and more every day. And you know what? I believe him. And it's a pretty darned good feeling.

Change is good.

Crashing is good.


geysers and mudpots?

Weird dream last night. For some reason Dan and the girls and I moved in to the lakefront house my family lived in when I was younger (the one my mom had to sell after her divorce). We were trying to get unpacked, but we were on the front porch and never seemed to go inside for some reason. Still, we were unpacking. Then we were down on the patio by the water. A lady from work that I don't know very well was over for dinner, and I couldn't figure out why she was there, especially while we were unpacking. By the water. For some reason, there were mudpots and a little geyser in the front yard (between the house and the lake). There are hot/warm springs in the lake, so it seemed to make sense, and yet it really troubled me. I remember searching for the springs while swimming as a kid. You'd swim around, and if you got in just the right spot, the water was warm instead of cold. There was an odd little fence on one side of the geyser and mudpots, which were all in this big jagged hole that seemed to have opened up in the middle of the yard. And the irises that seemed to want to take over the world when I was a kid were almost all dead, except for just a little patch. The Hammock was still there though. How I loved the hours I spent in that hammock staring up at the sky through the trees, listening to the ducks splash in the lake. Mmmm, memories... tinged with strange, odd, weird dream moments......

the golden eagle (for Jesse)

When the Golden Eagle
Is the last hotel on the street

When the money
Changes hands for the last time
And the heart is dirty,
When all the dead marriages are forgotten

When cancer is the guide
And wine the map and
There are hired killers in the

The Golden Eagle will take us in,
There will be tuna sandwiches
On the windowsill
And curtains

We will ride the cable cars again
And there will be a mirror
On the wall
That catches the sunset
In the evening and holds it still.

~Karen Sykes

Saturday, September 16, 2006

just peachy

While I'm at it with the pretty pictures, this is how I spent last Sunday. All day. Up to my elbows in peach juice. They turned out very nicely, if I do say so myself! Ooooh, and look at the cute tile! Did I mention I love my new kitchen? I love my new kitchen!

postcard happiness

These came in the mail yesterday. I love postcardx!
Thanks Virginia and Kristy!!!! You ROCK!

Yes, there is a plug here for - check it out! She is selling some cute stuff! Little girl looking over my shoulder says mommmmmmmy, look! Oh that's so cute! Mooooommmmmy, pleeeease can you buy it?

Friday, September 15, 2006


I really hope that's out of my system now. I really don't like that C word. It is just ugly. Please excuse my vent. It may have been vulgar and unnatractive, but rest assured it was much much worse before I edited out a large portion of it. I like my friend. I dont like the fact that she is stubborn. I don't like the fact that she doesn't take the time to learn the facts before arguing viciously for false statements of reality. I don't like that she is always positive towards me when we talk, but then talks about me behind my back to Dan. Hello? He is my family, remember? He's going to tell me what you say Einstein. Friends like that are just not worth having, and yet she is without a doubt my closest friend. Our lives are so intertwined that it's really just difficult to walk away. Our children are like siblings. How do you tell some one you've been friends with for years and years and years and who is more like family than friend to sod off?


Grrrrrrrrrrrrrr. Thoughts of annoyedness are pulsing through my neck. Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrr....Irritation, irritation, irritation. I don't want to go off on my friend. I don't want to go off about my friend. I like my friend. I try to like my friend. I really do. Sometimes it takes effort. Does the fact that I get irritated by real stupidity (not the endearing cute kind either) and lack of common sense really mean that I am oversensitive? I just dont have patience for it. Even so, I've always thought I was pretty nice about it. I have no interest in telling her she's a stupid c&*$, because Id really like to maintain some friendship with her. She *does* have some endearing qualities. I am not oversensitive you stupid f-ing c@#*! You are almost 30 years old. You are a grown woman. Quit trying to be a dumb teenager. You were dumb as a teenager as it is. You really dont need to relive that. Either do I. Grow up!

Monday, September 11, 2006

funny moment of the day

An IM from a friend just a moment ago:

don't know whos [arse] I have to kiss to get a [new] job, but they need to stick it up in the air higher so I can find it

hee hee

a lump in my throat, a knot in my stomach, and a tear in my eye

I was just driving along minding my own business this morning. Just another monday morning... I dropped the kids off at school, stopped at the post office to mail some bills, ran into the store to pick up a couple things, hopped on the freeway, turned on the radio, and headed for work. I drove on down the road listening to music and driving, half awake and thinking about little else, same as any other day. Then I saw him. Right in the middle of the last overpass before my exit, there was a man holding a large US flag, blowing in the wind. I felt like some one kicked me in the stomach. Today is September 11th! How could I not even have realized? The date hits me like a freight train. This man was giving his time, when I imagine he was supposed to be at work. He was standing there in front of the world, cars whizzing by behind and below him, making a silent statement. A HUGE silent statement. I wanted to turn around and drive back by to tell him thankyou! How could I forget about something like this? September 11th was the day that so many people's nightmares became reality. September 11th was the day so many brave people gave their lives for others. September 11th was the day I realized how vulnerable every single one of us is, and the day I lost the sense of security I'd lived with all my life. It was the day that war and atrocity became real to me. War had always been something we fought somewhere else, away from home, before that day. You know, the whole "It could never happen to me..." scenario. September 11th was the day that brought my country back together, that relit the fire of patriotism in so many people's hearts. Ironically, I was driving down the freeway listening to music when I heard the news that morning also. I didn't go back to talk to the man with the flag, but I am thankful for what he is doing there today. I hope he stirs in others the thoughts he did in me.

Thanks to you, whoever you are, for touching my life, and for reminding me this morning of many things that should never be forgotten!

Saturday, September 09, 2006

those who matter don't mind

Yesterday I received this one. I love this quote!

then I made these..

On their way today to some other folks in far away places...

more postcards

Then I received these:

mountain jellyfish?

So this is the first handmade postcard I made. I sent one very similar to it to some one in a far off place :)

Friday, September 08, 2006

a change will do you good (do doo doo doo la la la)

Speaking of pretty pictures, I've prettied up my blog finally. Nice, no? Im liking it :) Thanks to ahpoi on blogskins for the pretty picture!

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

pretty pictures

We just got back last night from our yearly trip to Eastern Oregon. It's so beautiful over there! The heat is more than I could deal with full time, but it was really nice to get away. (aaaaaaahhhh, big sigh. aaaaaahhh, another big sigh, was nice to be gone, but its nice to be home too...)

Aren't these clouds dreamy? The sky there is so amazing. We never have clouds like this at home. If we do, Im not lucky enough to be looking up.

My girlies are going mining! Yeah, um no, but they thought it was pretty fun to stand in front of the old cornucopia mine anyway. We went up to Cornucopia with Dan's uncle. He lived there as a young boy when it was a booming mining town. It's a ghost town now, with a few ramshakle shacks and lots of stone footings where there once were miners homes. That kind of place is cool anyway, but even more so when you have a guided tour with someone who LIVED it! WOW!

obligatory country boy truck porn...

Dan at twin lakes, cool place, very pretty. We made love on the dock here. No one around for miles. We saw some smoke over a ridge on the drive back down to town. By the time we reached the bottom they were evacuating the whole mountain, and there were helicopters scooping water from the lake to drop on the fire. Can you imagine making love beside a mountain lake, no one around for miles, just sunshine and solitude, and then suddenly up roars a helicopter? That would be an awkward moment! We consider ourselves mighty lucky and our timing good. Another 20 or 30 minutes, and we'd have been hastily dressing while trying to keep our clothes from blowing away in the wind from the choppers. Heh. Yikes!

Im a bad blogger...

I dont write nearly often enough, and thats sad. Its not like anyone is reading this, so Im not letting anyone down or anything, but Im letting myself down, and I dont like it. I am a happier and more even keeled person if I can take the time to write and to work through how I feel, so I decided this was important to me, but I really haven't followed through as well as I had planned or hoped. UGH.