Sunday, December 18, 2011

I'll Be Home for Christmas

I've traveled somewhere for the holidays for as long as I can remember.
Whether it was between two sides of the family growing up, coming home from college, visiting my husband's relatives or simply the fact that I lived in another town...
I've always been on the road.

As I've grown older, it seems there are more places to go.
Between the two of us, there are 6 places to visit between Thanksgiving and New Year's.
This year, I'm fortunate enough to say we will be done by Christmas Eve.
And I will be home for Christmas.

We try to split up the holiday season as best we can.
We usually see most of my family around Thanksgiving and will see some again today at a birthday party.
We've already visited a few of his relatives on the weekends and just found out the last gathering will be on Christmas Eve.
Which means we don't have to get up and go on Christmas Day!
Can you tell how thrilled I am about this?

Though in a way it may seem sad to others, it's exciting to me for two reasons.
    1. I have to go into work around 10:30pm that night.
        I was afraid a day of traveling would cut my evening nap short if not completely.
        It's a huge relief that I will be able to get some rest.
    2. I've never spent Christmas in my own home unless I had to work.
        And I couldn't make it somewhere.
        That's such a gift when you've been on the go for so long.
        And you like staying at home.

We could probably still run over to see some of my family in the morning and get back at a decent hour.
But by that point, we will have seen everyone, handed out the gifts and been on our way.
So I'm going to take full advantage of this opportunity because it may not come around again for a long time.
When it does, it will probably be because we have no family left.
Or maybe we'll be hosting instead of hopping in the car.

The only problem now is that I have to come up with a holiday meal.
I'm thinking green bean casserole will be involved somehow.
Some kind of meat.
And pie.

Come to think of it, this may be more work than just going to someone's house!
Ah, but it will be worth it.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Staying Put

Ahhhh. Our first weekend of relative calmness in 6 weeks. Since October 1st, we've been to the mountains plus two weddings, dressed up and went out for Halloween, and taken a train from Jasper to French Lick. So this weekend and next we're catching up on chores and yardwork before we start up again with holiday madness. Thanksgiving is only a week and a half away. Christmas? 6 weeks away. And we have at least 5 households to visit. Kind of a tight fit. But I think we've got a basic schedule in mind so that we see everyone.

We've made awesome plans to go to Louisville with friends to ring in 2012 so that should be fun. It's not often both New Year's Eve and New Year's Day fall on the weekend. It's especially nice for me and my news peeps who would probably never be able to take BOTH of those days off. Can't wait to shop for an outfit!

Well, Perry's fired up the lawnmower so I guess that's my signal to start the indoor work. I wanted to get some things done yesterday when I got home from work, but the recliner took all of my motivation and I ended up shopping online instead. All I really have to do is start blasting some music and I'll be good to go.

Here's to staying put for a few weekends!

Friday, October 21, 2011

Cabin Fever

After a slowdown in September, we jumped back on the busy train in October. Starting with our trip to the mountains. I looked for a pet friendly cabin many times over the past few years, but I could never settle on one that didn’t make you pay a bunch of extra fees for having dogs. Finally, I found this little place in Georgia that I thought was reasonable, and we were off.

We arrived on a Saturday afternoon and stayed for 4 nights. I didn’t want to book us for too long because I wasn’t sure if we’d even like it or how the dogs would behave. But we definitely could have stayed all week. The cabin was at the top of a mountain with a beautiful view, a hot tub and a fireplace. There were neighboring cabins, but since the leaves were still on the trees, you couldn’t even see them from our deck.

I was concerned about keeping us busy. We usually don’t stay in one place for that long when we're on vacation. We tend to settle down in a different location each night. Plus, we usually don’t have the dogs so we can go to restaurants and be on the go all day. But it really was the perfect mix of relaxation and activities. We went to a lake recreation area and state park, saw waterfalls and pumpkin patches, bought fall goodies and Eddie Bauer clothes, enjoyed picnics outdoors and had breakfast and dinner at the cabin.

My goal was to get into the hot tub (with a glass of wine, of course) every night. No matter how tired I was. But being on night shift and switching back to normal for a week catches up with you quickly. So by halftime of the Colts game on Monday night, I conked out and missed my chance. But every other night, by golly, I was enjoying those jets!

We truly did not want to leave, but the time came and we headed home. We spent the rest of the week taking care of projects around the house, running errands, riding motorcycles and just hanging out. Since then, we’ve been to one wedding and have another one this weekend. Halloween is just around the corner and so is Pmo’s birthday. Besides Thanksgiving and Christmas, looks like the end of the year might calm down. Until I fill it up with plans again. Another cabin is in our future for sure. I'm pretty sure we're hooked now.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

A Wii Bit of Guilt

I began wanting a Wii after visiting a friend who had Wii Fit. The games were fun and you got a workout on top of it. I started watching the ads and after several months bought a system when there was a gift card perk. We bowled and played tennis for awhile. I bought Just Dance, also after playing it at another friend's house, and later Just Dance 2. Darts soon entered the picture. I purchased the balance board and got into boxing and yoga. I even started weighing the family every week. But after awhile, as all novelties do, interest faded. And I haven't played anything in many, many moons.

I keep talking about getting back into all the games, especially for fitness purposes, but I haven't done much about it. Until last night. Pmo and I had dinner at the Fiddler Fest, then came home to drink wine and listen to music. I specifically requested record playing. After sitting in a chair for a bit, sipping my red Roberston King, trying not to fade like I often do on a Friday night, I knew I had to move or else it would be lights out soon. So I asked Pmo, "You wanna bowl?"

It took awhile to set up the Wii again because batteries had to be changed, the sensor bar had to be picked up from behind the TV and the remotes had to be reconnected. But once we got going, it was fun! I even stayed in my "go out" clothes for awhile and stayed in my shoes. Like I was at a real bowling alley. We moved on to darts later. I finished the night by playing some ski ball and hoops. The biggest advantage was it kept me up past 11pm!

So now that the ice has been broken, I hope I truly will get back into the Wii as the colder months approach. I find it hard to justify playing video games when it's 80 degrees and sunny. I think that's part of my constant battle of "what *should* I be doing right now?" Read a book or clean the bathroom? Surf the internet or take Jack for a walk? Cook a meal or do laundry? Watch a movie or sort through papers? Write a blog or flip through a magazine? Not to mention work, sleep, groceries, etc.

There are only so many hours in the day. Boredom is obviously not even an option with all of those things I just mentioned. However, as always, I expect time and energy to work against me. Just need to remember last night's fun!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Circle of Friends

I don’t make friends easily. It’s not that I’m a hermit or no one likes me. Though I doubt I’ll ever win Miss Congeniality. But I’m not social. I’m horrible at small talk and meeting new people. I don’t mingle. Which is why I’ve met all of my friends through circumstance. Having to be in the same place for a certain amount of time and getting to know them. Not because I met them at a party once and exchanged phone numbers to get together again.

My circle of friends starts near Terre Haute. My best friend from home lives there with her husband and two children. About 20 years ago, we started hanging out in junior high because we were in the same classes and our families were close. She’s been there from virtually the beginning and probably knows me better than anyone ever could. Luckily, we don’t live too far apart and I see her a few times a year. Most recently at our high school reunion, and some shenanigans before and after.

Next stop is Indy where my sorority BFF lives with her husband and two children. We actually met in high school because she lived in a neighboring county and worked with one of my friends. But I didn’t really get to know her until senior year when we roomed together at college. We visit about twice a year during our “summits” where a small group of sisters get together at someone’s house for the weekend. And occasionally, we see each other in between if one of us happens to be in town. Her sister lives here, so that’s a bonus.

Head over to Louisville and you’ll find another one of my college besties along with her husband and two children. You see a pattern here? I met her freshman year when I went out for track. She was a sophomore and the only girl thrower who wasn’t exactly thrilled about me invading her turf. But that quickly changed when we spent some time together outside of practice. Let’s just say she and the boys introduced me to a side of college life I hadn’t seen before. And I’ve pretty much been enjoying it ever since. A group of us try to get together at least once a year, but I don’t see any of them as often as I should.

Further south, you’ll meet a single girl in Nashville who’s like a sister to me. I was married to her brother for a short time, so I guess I’ve known her for almost ten years now. We got acquainted during holidays, family gatherings and other events. She’s always been my counselor. Her ability to listen and give advice is quite unique. I can talk to her about all kinds of things: relationships, religion, careers, you name it. We try to meet up for lunch and/or shopping a few times a year. Though as I write this, I realize I haven’t seen her in a long time and I’ve had a note to call and catch up with her on my to-do list for several weeks now.

The circle ends with Evansville and my work friends. These are the people I see on a regular basis and who are most up to date with my life. Although with Facebook and this blog, pretty much anyone knows what’s going on with me. We often go out with 2 of my friends and their husbands for dinner and usually karaoke. In fact, that’s what we’re doing tonight. Each couple has a child so it all depends on getting babysitters. But it usually works out about once a month. I have other friends from when I used to work evenings that I don’t see much anymore. Sometimes breakfast plans can remedy that.

After writing this, it’s apparent I have plenty of friends. I just wonder if I’m settling for what’s in front of me instead of breaking out of my comfort zone. Am I being content with the people who have walked into my life instead of getting out there and meeting others? Should I open up the circle?

Then I realize I *do* make an effort. I work to keep the friends I have. It’s hard to stay in touch with people, even if they live in the same area, but especially if they’re out of town. I think I do a pretty good job of sending emails or getting on Facebook to check in, even make plans.

I’m not so good at picking up the phone. Unless it’s for texting. Digital correspondence is somehow way easier than calling. I still send cards in the mail for baby and bridal showers or weddings I can’t attend. But writing a letter? That’s a lost cause. No friend, old or new, wants to try to read my handwriting.

Saturday, September 3, 2011


I’d have to say I’m pretty ambivalent when it comes to most things. Perhaps this is why a career in news suits me because I can see both sides of the story. But I even fell into that because I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do with my life.

I don’t have any real political views. You probably won’t ever see me marching on Washington or protesting property taxes. I don’t have any stance on immigration or gun control. I’m not really pro-choice or pro-life. Though the older I get, I tend to lean pro-life even though I think women should have the right to choose. See? Can’t make up my mind.

The subject I’m most ambivalent about right now is whether to have children. I think many people believe I’m anti-kid. Which is not true. I love kids. I love my cousins’ kids. My friends’ kids. I’m “friends with toddlers” as one of my girlfriends puts it. I’ve just never had a maternal urge or felt I had to do something about that biological clock.

I always assumed I would get married and have children. But there was never a real plan for that, much like my career. College was definitely a goal, even had my sights set on a master’s degree in…something. But by the time I got to that 4th year of higher learning, I’d had enough of school. Marriage happened, so did divorce. Then marriage again. But the kids thing has somehow always been put on the back burner.

I’m about to turn 33. So the baby vibe is all around me. Friends, family, neighbors…seems like everyone is procreating. I’m not saying there’s peer pressure or anything, but there must be something in the water, you know? Still, I’m not sure it’s for me.

On one hand, having a baby would change my life forever…
On the other hand, having a baby would change my life forever!

See, for the first time (in a long time) I’m pretty content. I’ve got a good job and a great relationship. I still see my friends from high school and college. I travel. I stay pretty busy. And who knows what is on the horizon? I’m perfectly happy sans kids. But I don’t want to have any regrets. I don’t want to look back and see I missed out on such a special experience. And, in essence, a contribution to the world. A legacy. Something we would always share.

Since neither one of us feels strongly on the subject, we don’t have a real problem. It would be an issue if I was the wife who *had* to have children and would go to great lengths to do so, and my husband was totally against it. But that's not the case. I also would rather be happy with the love of my life and not have kids, then settle for my second choice and have a family.

I guess what it boils down to is I’m afraid of rocking the boat. I fear what having a baby would do to our relationship. Our free time. My body. My mental state. ‘Cause there’s no going back. It’s not like adopting a puppy that pees on the carpet and you send it back to the pound. Though I probably wouldn’t do that to a dog. Plus, let's face it: we’re not getting any younger. So a decision must be made.

I’ll have to keep wrestling with it until something or someone persuades me one way or the other. But obviously I'm not easily persuaded. I would pray about it, but I’m not very religious either. I just wish for once I had a strong opinion. Maybe I do. I just don’t want to accept it yet.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Journal Yearning

Pmo and I used to have a habit of recounting the entire weekend on Sunday night. Everything we did, everywhere we went, everything we saw. That task has fallen by the wayside, same as my journals.

On our first vacation together, I wrote up everything we had done at the end of the day on my computer. While it was fresh in my mind and I could still remember details. Because if you wait much longer than that, you lose so many memories. I eventually turned my writing and pictures into a scrapbook. It was a lot of work, but I'm glad I have it in the back bedroom to look at whenever I want. I have also put sets of pictures on a few DVDs (with songs, of course) and given them to Pmo as presents.

I enjoy putting stuff like that together. I just haven't done much of it in lately. I started looking at journals the other night at Barnes and Noble. Crisp, unwritten pages bound by leather or canvas. Sometimes with a tie wrapped around or buttoned by a flap. The travel journals really sparked my interest. I thought about getting one but wasn't sure I would actually use it. I hate waste.

This blog is a journal, obviously. But you see how often I come up with something to write about on here. And how often do I just write about writing? Sometimes, I don't want to go public with my thoughts. I have a few journals I keep from difficult times in my life that I don't necessarily want everyone to see. Then again, I have considered trying to make a book out of those entries, too.

As I've grown older, it's been much easier for me to write fact than fiction. That's why a blog works. And keeping something like a travel journal would make sense. I don't have to sit and wait for inspiration to hit me. I just tell what happened. Sitting here at the kitchen table helps, too. When I sit in the recliner with the TV on, my mind goes numb and I quit thinking for awhile. Which I like. Which I often need to do, especially after work. But with just music playing and creativity flowing into the air, I can actually form thoughts and come up with a plan. I don't like silence. Dead air, as we call it in the TV biz :)

I bought this computer in 2007 because I wanted to be like Carrie Bradshaw from Sex in the City. I've admitted this before and I have no shame. But another advantage to blogging or keeping a journal in a word document is that you don't have to see my handwriting. I love the look and feel of a journal in my hand, but if it's not legible, what's the point? Alright, my handwriting isn't that bad, but if I get in a hurry, I start making mistakes. Not a big fan of white out. And my hand starts hurting. Then I quit writing. And that's no fun.

Still, I may go back to B&N and buy that travel journal for our next trip. I could drag my scrapbooking supplies out and go shopping for new ones. I might print out some pictures and take a stab at another memory keepsake. I may go find one of those journals in the back that I know is blank and start filling it. I could read my old entries and form those thoughts into a rough draft. But for now, I'll probably go start reading the book I bought Friday night and go to sleep. And dream of brown leather and perfect cursive.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Hot and Cold

I'd say my summer is going well. For summer. I'm not a big fan. The bugs, the sweat. It would almost be okay if those things went away when the sun went down. But they don't. I went to work the other night and it was 86 degrees. And pitch black. Unreal. Thank goodness for the A/C.

I did the pool thing when I was younger, but now it's just not my thing. I'd rather hang out at a lake or the beach. But I don't do that either. There is a lake at a park about ten miles from our house but we've only been bicycling there.

That's another thing. I hate when it's too hot to ride bicycles or motorcycles. Nothing worse that sitting on a motorcycle, a black one for that matter, with the hot pavement beneath you.

I know, I know. After the winter we had, I shouldn't be complaining. Plus, I'm not even awake during the hottest part of the day, unless it's a weekend, so what I do I know? But I'd rather be comfortable. Cozy. And able to breathe.

I'm forgetting one thing. It may be in the 90s outside but it's pretty chilly at work. So I have to bundle up when I go in, then shed the layers when I come out. It's ridiculous. I prefer fall. And a cabin in the mountains. With a glass of wine in a hot tub. Hmmm. Time to make vacation plans.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Me Against the Music

I often wonder why I didn't pursue a career in music. I attribute it to the fact that they don't teach you the good stuff in school. This fact is portrayed perfectly in "The Runaways" when Joan Jett goes for guitar lessons. He wants to teach her "On Top of 'Ol Smoky" on acoustic guitar. She wants to plug in an amp and crank out "Smoke on the Water".

I could have joined the school band but I really wasn't interested in playing the clarinet or the tuba. Classical music wasn't my thing, and that's all I had heard the band play, besides pep rally material. I do remember getting to sing a few "popular" songs in junior high. It was in Mrs. Scherzinger's class: "Yesterday" by the Beatles and "Spinning Wheel" by Blood, Sweat and Tears. I was told I was a soprano so I felt like all I got to do was sing the high notes like an opera singer or choir member. All I was really did, all I've ever done, is imitate what I heard. I never learned how to read music. It seemed boring at the time and I guess I just didn't get it.

Before I go any further, let me make it clear that even though I enjoy a good karaoke bar, I do NOT think I'm a good singer. Never have. In fact, I cursed the fact that I wasn't given such a talent. How could I be so passionate about something and then not be any good at it? The first time I sang in public was my best friend's wedding in 2005. My dad later told me the bride was dancing in the crowd and mouthing the words right back to me. I'll never forget that.

My ultimate dream was to be a singer/songwriter. Even if my voice sucked, I still could have learned how to play guitar or piano and write songs. Went on to college and perfected my craft. But even in college, you're expected to have a basic knowledge of your subject before you start that journey. I didn't understand the dynamics of music, just that I loved it. Plus, you're supposed to invest in a career that's profitable. Unless you're any good, the music industry can eat you alive.

I've always enjoyed a variety of music: rock/country/pop/hiphop, etc. I like to say, "A good song is a good song is a good song." No matter what genre. But I always come back to Stevie Nicks as one of my biggest influences. If you looked up the definition of singer/songwriter in the dictionary (or did a Google search these days) you'd see her picture. Next month, I'll get to see her live in concert for the first time. I really can't believe it took me this long. Stevie's like one of my oldest and dearest friends who I still have a connection with even though we lost touch over the years. I may not listen to her music every day or even have all of her albums, but she's still so important to me. Not just her voice, but her lyrics. It's like she knew exactly how I felt. And she made me want to put my emotions into song, too.

I guess if I had wanted it bad enough, I would have pursued music as a profession. I suppose it's not too late. I could still take singing lessons. I could write down lyrics. I used to write poetry all of the time. And what is a song if not poetry set to music? I could learn how to tickle the ivories or play my grandpa's guitar. I actually dabbled in guitar a bit in college. I had a friend (who reminds me of Joan Jett) who tried to teach me. But I lost interest. And it hurt my hands.

Maybe one day I'll get my act together, literally. Or maybe I'll just be a professional appreciator.

Either way, the music will always be with me.

" can sing the melody to me and I could write a couple lines..."

--Bon Jovi

Monday, June 6, 2011

The Sleep Monster

I fought the good fight this weekend. You win some, you lose some, right?

Saturday was a loss. We knew it was going to be hot, so we were trying to think of things to do that wouldn't kill us, physically and financially because we're going on vacation in a few weeks. I had a few errands to run so I went out on my own around 11am and got back before noon. I think we had some lunch then I proceeded to lay on the couch. All damn day. We couldn't really agree on what to do, a wave of tiredness hit me and that was pretty much the end of it. Perry tinkered around the house and I took several cat naps. I managed to wake up long enough to have dinner. I planned to make chicken, rice and mashed potatoes but all of the energy had been sucked out of me so Perry made 2 out of 3. Which ain't bad :)

I was determined not to fall into the same sleep trap on Sunday. We decided to cash in our Bar Louie gift card and hit up the Super Flea Market while riding our motorcycles. Unfortunately, we rode right into a storm and had to take cover immediately at the flea market which put a damper on the situation, pun intended. After an hour or so of picking up some cell phone accessories, we decided to make a go of it. It was barely sprinkling and the storm had mostly passed. Plus this guy let us park under the carport so our motorcycles weren't too wet.

I wanted to forge ahead to Bar Louie, but after a few minutes on the bypass, I realized the bottom of my jeans were getting soaked and we probably needed to go home first. A couple of quick showers, change of clothes and we were off again. The thing about Bar Louie is that Perry and I both got gift cards earlier this year for being employees of the month. But we're really not that crazy about the restaurant. So we used up his gift card and gave the remaining balance to some other customers. It was just a buck and some change.

I knew if we went home after lunch I would just end up passed out on the couch. All afternoon. Again. So I looked up showtimes for The Hangover II and turns out we had just enough time to check out another nearby flea market, Trader Bakers, before the movie. This is where I proceeded to buy 4 dvds for $10. Not bad I thought. In fact, I'm watching Mystic Pizza right now. But since I was yawning at lunch, I was afraid I might fall asleep during The Hangover. I didn't, and the movie was insane. But I was pretty wiped out afterward so I succumbed to a snooze when we got home.

As I napped, again, Perry commenced more tinkering. When I woke up, we thought cereal sounded good for dinner. With a bowl of Corn Flakes (Perry) and Rice Krispies (me) in hand, we watched our Netflix movie of the week, Due Date. And I'm proud to say my eyes stayed open during the entire flick, although they did droop a few times. It took little time for them to close completely after the movie was over, a good hour or two before official bedtime.

Since I dozed off early last night, I got up at 5am this morning. Again. The other part to this story is that I'm off work today, my long lost Memorial Day. Which means I just slept through most of my shift. Perry has to work, of course, so my plans are to clean the house. It should be easy to get going once he goes to work because my energetic hours occur in the earliest part of the day. I just have to wait for him to get up and keep quiet until then.

So if you hear music blasting from my house around 8am, it's just me mopping. I'm sure I'll be out like a light this afternoon. Again.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

On the Homefront

It happens every year. Pretty plants and colorful flowers start popping up all over the place. In people's yards, at home improvement stores. And I get the idea that I can magically reinvent myself as a gardener.

I forget the fact that whenever I plant something, I don't take care of it. It looks good for a few days, maybe even weeks. But it always dies. It's a combination on my lack of knowledge and little effort.

So this year, I decided to be true to myself and go simple. I still like the look of mulch and I don't have to maintain it too much, so I got the idea from a friend to line the area in front of the porch with bricks to keep the mulch from escaping with the rain. And just using lawn decor.

Mom started me off with a solar light in the shape of a caila lilly. I bought another flower looking light at Target. I added a couple of little mushrooms and that's as far as I've gone. I'm thinking of letting others areas I used to mulch grow some grass. Unless I find some more decor to put out.

In other news, we're planning a trip east soon. Gettysburg, DC, Williamsburg and VA Beach. I've got the hotel rooms booked but that's about as far as I've gone with that, too. I need to make an itinerary. I'm also spending a weekend at a casino with some girlfriends. That should be a good time.

This is supposed to be a "long" weekend for most people, but of course I have to work Monday. I'm trying to mix a little bit of chores with a little bit of fun. We've got a big tree branch down in the yard we have to cut up. Grass needs mowed. Laundry needs washed. Carpet needs vacuumed. But it's supposed to be warmer so I also want to get out the bicycle and/or motorcycle and have a little adventure.

That's the scoop on the homefront!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Writing Woes

  • I've thought of several ideas for blogs over the past few weeks. But if I don't write ideas down, they slip away into the recesses of my mind until something pulls them out again. Maybe that's why they call it fishing for ideas. You cast a line in your brain, hoping to pull out one of those bottom feeding catfish with the whiskers.

  • I'm not able to write a daily post. I don't have the time, energy or enough worthwhile topics to pull that off. I might be able to manage one a week if I set my mind to it. I am, after all, an obsessive planner so if I put it on my to do list, it would probably get done. But that hasn't happened either. So I'm happy with myself, for now, if I blog at least once a month. Just checked the date of my last one and I'm making good on my promise.

  • I wish I could blog more. I've always loved writing. I wanted to be a novelist or a playwright, holed up in some cabin in the mountains pounding away on a typewriter. With dogs by my side, of course. Or out in the country in a house by the lake like in Funny Farm, getting inspiration from a squirrel. And I would love to be a singer/songwriter if I knew anything about melodies, harmony or notes. But those things take a lot of talent. And I live in the real world which means I need a regular paycheck.

  • I'm also a bit of a perfectionist. If I can't sit down with an idea at hand and a plan to craft it, I won't post anything. In fact, what I'm doing right now is a bit out of the ordinary. Just sitting here writing on the actual Blogger website. I usually start writing in Microsoft Word, save it, go back over it, edit it, copy and paste it here, edit some more and finally post after I've previewed it and made some more adjustments. That takes a long time! And sometimes I just want to get off the computer for awhile. Take a walk. Do some yoga. Watch TV and not think.

  • That being said, I can't remember any of those ideas I had for blogs right now. So I guess this is a just blog about blogging. I also don't like to make these things too long because I know our attention spans are short these days with all the information that's thrown at us from every angle. But like Jerry Springer, I have a final thought.

  • I do get to write in my current profession which is awesome, but I don't have the time I crave to really perfect it. There's always a deadline approaching and I'm often working with other people's words, not my own. But at least I came close. I'm not totally out in left field: performing neurosurgery, building a skyscraper or rocketing to the moon. That's just not me :)

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Lessons Learned

You can become a morning person, if you're forced into it.
My most productive time is now between the hours of 6am-12pm.
After that, I'm pretty much worthless, especially on a Saturday night.
If I'm sitting at home, I doze off by 8pm.

You can learn to like coffee, just find the right sweetener.
I've learned Coffeemate does the trick, and I'm still trying out different flavors.
But I only drink coffee when I absolutely need it, like when I'm having a particularly difficult time waking up before work.
Don't want my teeth to get stained :)

You can enjoy quality time, but you have to decide what that means.
I'm trying to hang out more with P, B and J (Perry, Bug and Jack) and get back to my yoga, Just Dance 2 and Wii Fit... instead of trying to catch up with every single post on Facebook or dwelling on my job after hours.

You can enjoy some luxuries while staying true to your inner cheapskate.
I've recently splurged on a few items like a massage and a flat screen TV for the bedroom.
But I still love bargain finds at thrift stores and flea markets and clipping coupons.
I also searched high and low for affordable lodging near, not on, the beach in Florida.
Someday, I'll treat myself to an oceanside view :)

You may work the night shift, but you don't have to look like it.
I'm a jeans and t-shirt kind of gal.
Working the night shift gives me the excuse to slack in the style department.
So I try to dress up as much as possible to keep from slipping into the habit.
I even keep buying clothes and accessories that adhere to a professional dress code.
But if I'm just not feeling it, I can get by with a hoodie and jeans, no problem.

You can't do it all, just do your best.
This is the biggie.
I'm working more hours than I used to, and I have to do some tasks at home now.
Yet there's still housework to be done, dogs to be fed, bills to be paid, presents to be bought, family gatherings to attend... you get the picture.
I realize now if I get behind, I'll catch up.
Pretty quickly.
I'm kinda OCD like that.
And if I can't catch up, Perry helps out.
That's the beauty of it.

Now if you'll excuse me, it's time for some quality time on the couch.
With B and J.
'Cause P is at work :)

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Spring Forward

Cabin fever has definitely set in for all of us. Jack is especially whiny. Pmo gets bored easily. Bug is not getting any exercise and attached to the couch. And I'm losing weight because my meal times are so random and sometimes nonexistent.

So here are some things I'm looking foward to...

Short term: Yoga. I plan to get on the floor and do some stretching later. I'll probably take a nap, too, because we stayed up late last night and got up early this morning. Why I don't know.

Middle term: Friday night. Pmo and I are now in the habit of going out to eat at the end of the week. Our most recent outing was Pizza Chef. Plus, it's still days away, but payday's coming around again soon and I can't wait to pay off some more debt.

Long term: Spring starts 6 weeks from today. Pmo and I are talking about taking trips to Florida and DC in the coming months. I'm also going to have extra days off this year because I'm salary instead of hourly. I've already got one, possibly two comp days built up. And I'll get all 6 holidays off now, well maybe not the exact day, but I have 6 days coming to me nonetheless.

For now, it's going to be a lazy Sunday with my usual super early bedtime. I'm going to miss the Super Bowl, but I really don't care too much about that. We had a little get together at our house last night, so I got my appetizer fixins out of my system. That's my favorite part about football anyway, the food.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Rest in Peace?


My eyes slowly lift from a sound sleep.
My ears hone in on a desperate whine coming from the living room.

I usually don't hear such things.
Either the noises aren't made or the fan I use for white noise works.
I didn't turn on the fan today.

I get up to see what's wrong. The noise is coming from Jack. It's a much different whine than I'm used to. His head is slightly down, tail wagging. I suddenly remember both dogs ate a bowl of food right before I went to bed. So this must be an EPC, emergency poot cry.

I begrudgingly throw on a coat and take the dogs outside. The sun is bright and I wish I had grabbed sunglasses. I walk around the backyard with Jack on a leash, leaving Bug to his own accord. Jack trots around and Bug is the one who ends up pooting. This, of course, does not make me happy since Jack started the whole thing.

We go back in the house. I declare "no treats!" because I'm so irritated with the whole disturbance, and I lie down again. A few minutes later, I realize I too must go to the bathroom. I get up and take care of that, then lie down. Again.

A few minutes later, I hear thud. Thud. Thud. Thud. Sounds like someone is pounding a hammer on a roof. But no one would start working on a roof at 4pm on a Friday. Then I put 2 and 2 together: weekend + plus warmer temperatures = basketball kid. He's a teenager two doors down from us who's almost always out pounding the pavement when it's warm. A few expletives run through my head and under my breath I murmur, effing basketball kid. I finally give up the fight and retreat to the living room.
****I don't sleep as long on Fridays so I can attempt to sleep through the night. So I was going to get up in an hour or so anyway. But it's still annoying. Soon, Pmo will be home. I'll have to put on my happy face and gear up for dinner. Maybe he can talk me out of getting up at 3:30am Saturday morning to play basketball in front of my neighbor's house.****

Monday, January 24, 2011

Routine Maintenance

I know all I've blogged about lately is being on night shift and producing the morning show. But it's all I know right now. So here we go.

Today, tonight, whatever... I tried to establish a bit of a routine. At least during the week. Weekends don't count. You pretty much have to get through them the best you can. And still try to enjoy yourself. Anyway, today I got 8 hours of sleep from 11am-7pm, yay! Okay, I woke up a few times, but the point is I was able to fall back to sleep, which I feel is the hardest part about day snoozing. I still credit the melatonin for keeping my brain in a coma. To keep me alert after I woke up, I started drinking coffee around 7:30pm. With French Vanilla Coffeemate, my new friend.

Then I caught up on work email, Facebook, etc. I used to go through work email just to weed out all of the stuff I didn't need. Now I need to catch up on things and see what's going on before I go into the newsroom. I have to pay a lot of attention and save more emails than I used to.

After that, I got out my yoga mat and did several poses while Pmo watched American Pickers and Pawn Stars. I feel the need to stretch now more than ever because I sit for even longer periods of time at work. Especially this morning. 2 and 1/2 hours in the producer booth is hard on the bottom. I also have trouble walking at first when I get out of the chair. Is that bad? :)

Finally, it was time to eat. I fixed a ham and cheese sandwich with cheesy poofs and had a Diet Coke. Pmo was glad I finally settled down. But think about it. I really can't get up at 7pm and just relax all night because I'll get tired all over again. And I don't have a lot of energy in the morning after I get home from work to do these things. Except this morning I did do the dishes and cleaned the kitchen and bathroom countertops. And had pizza, salad and chocolate milk for breakfast :)

Now it's almost time to get in the shower and schlep into work. That's another routine that gets thrown off on the weekend, my showers. Don't worry, I still take them. They're just at odd times and spaced out more than usual.
I hope I can keep up this new routine. So does Jack. You know that commercial on TV where the dog is doing yoga with his owner? When I get on the floor, Jack seizes a golden opportunity:

Friday, January 21, 2011

Weekend Outlook

My weekend started around 8:30am this morning. Probably around the time your work day began. That's the big plus of working night shift.

I just finished my second week on the morning show. I feel a bit more "with it" but I have a long way to go. There are kinks to be worked out, conversation to be had, lessons to be learned. It's really a trial and error process. For all of us. I'll be glad when I get to a point where I've got it all figured out, or at least I think I do. I'd like to have a better grip on things. There are lots of logistics to mull over. Many sources to check again and again. Planning ahead day to day. Things I can do, I'm just not used to it. It's tiring. I still feel scatterbrained and unorganized, but I'm chipping away at that as well with my notes and such.

That being said, I'm going to relax this weekend. I'm having lunch with a co-worker in a few hours. Pmo and I might take in a movie tomorrow. We had talked about going to a winery but the snow changed that plan.

My weekend will end around 12am Monday morning. Or Sunday at midnight, depending on how you look at it. That's the bitch about being on night shift. But I won't think about that now. I'll think about that on Sunday when I have to go to bed at 6pm ;)

Friday, January 14, 2011

Hell Week

On Monday, I started a new role at work as executive producer of the morning show. Now that I have the first week under my belt, my survival story of Sunrise Boot Camp can be told.

The first step was adjusting from 2nd shift to 3rd shift. Not easy. I only slept 5 to 6 hours a day at the most. The dogs were confused and wondered why I was at home but not in the living room with them. I started drinking coffee and used sleep aids at times. I even bought some melatonin for future naps.

The second step was learning how the show currently operates. I have produced a 1/2 hour show, and at times 2 separate 1/2 hour shows, for the past 7 years. Sunrise is a 2 and 1/2 hour show. It's a totally different dynamic, a whole new crew of people and a lot of content responsibility compared to the evening shows.

The third step was adapting my way of producing to the show. I'm sharing duties with another producer for the first time. I use different elements and tools than what the crew is used to incorporating. The director and I are in the process of coming to an understanding in terms of what I expect and what he can do. In fact, he's teaching me things I didn't know we could do.

The fourth step was moving the show into a new direction. A series of meetings took place in the latter half of the week that introduced new elements, strategies and goals into my brain. At this point, I had a breakdown. I think it was Wednesday. I woke up from a nap, came into the kitchen and just started crying on Pmo's shoulder. The whole week was one big roller coaster of emotions. There were times when I wondered why the hell I decided to do this, and could I really do what upper management was asking of me? There were times when I had ideas of how to make the show better. Too many ideas that clouded my mind and made it difficult to close my eyes when I needed to sleep. There were times when I just missed my former life I left behind less than a week ago. 11 hours of overtime didn't help either.

I think my biggest problem, besides the poor sleep and eating habits, was the chaos of clutter. I don't deal well with being unorganized. I am not usually scatterbrained. I've been taking notes all week which are randomly placed on loose pieces of paper, in a notebook, in emails and in my mind. I need to cohesively bring all that together in one place in a specific order or I'll go insane. I need to decide what to tackle first and how to execute it. It's like coming home to a dirty house. I can't relax or settle in until I've put all the dishes away, cleared the countertops, made the bed and filled the dog bowls.

I'm calling it boot camp/hell week in the hopes that the worst is behind me. It can only get better from here, right? I was thrown into the fire, to the wolves, what have you, right from the get go and I'm coming out the other side. I have to retrain my brain and change my mentality. I think of it like building a truck on an assembly line. For years, you've done it the same way with the same parts and the same people. And you were pretty confident and comfortable in your abilities. But then the boss moves you to an SUV. You not only have to learn how to build this particular SUV, but build it like it has never been built before using new tools and parts. And make it bigger. Much, much bigger.

Kudos to my husband who has beared with me and been my rock through this first week. He's made dinner, packed my midnight snacks, cleared snow off my car, kept the dogs quiet while I slept, washed the dishes, made me coffee, sent me articles on staying healthy on night shift... the list never ends. God bless you, St. Pmo :)