Thursday, May 19, 2011

another something good. how could i forget?

today my husband did not have to work.
he brought me lunch & we ate outside.
then we took a walk by the river.
we kissed under a tree.
it was perfect.

something good

i am going tomorrow to houston to meet my bff's baby. he will be a month old.
i cannot wait to see both of them.
the long trip will be worth it.

something nice.

i don't have anything nice to say right now. i think i am super tired and not wanting to go to my second job. i would cancel if i could, but we need the money.

i also haven't exercised enough today, and i will not be home until way late, so running is not an option :(

the real reason i am complaining, probably, is because i had a realization today about how fat i am.
"fat" it is even a gross word. just to type it. yuck.
so i created a running schedule and i am sticking to it.
i have no choice.
so some posts will probably be about running and working out.
sorry in advance.

where are the woodchucks

i haven't seen them.

maybe they migrated.

or maybe it's because they know i am watching.


i work in public service. three things happened today that i didn't like.

1. woman on her cell phone (not supposed to be) on SPEAKER phone so that the whole room could hear...when i asked her to keep it down and take it off speaker, she said she didn't know how.
things to figure out before making a call...

2. a woman coming in and asking for something WHILE FLOSSING her teeth with one of those hand held picks. i couldn't look her in the face, and i almost got sick about it.

3 and third, WOW this is by far the worst one. guy walks up on his cell phone (see #1) and motions/mouths that he needs a pen. argh!! try putting that person on hold and then asking me politely if you could borrow a pen.
he then returned it and asked if he could keep it, "is it one of your free pens?"
we don't have free pens.
then he asked me if i could do something for him on my computer.
i told him they could do it at the front desk...he said, "oh, so you're just playing free cell"
i said "no" and wanted to say, " i am actually blogging about how rude you are."

Tuesday, May 17, 2011


okay, so perhaps that was a bit overboard. but, seriously, i feel like i have a huge potential...without the possibility of expressing it. and if i am not pursuing it, am i only losing it?

what is this a time for?
learning? relaxing? praying? writing? reading?
only so much a sedentary me can take. blah.

nothing is ever good enough for me.

losing my potential

That's me in the corner
That's me in the harsh light
Losing my potential
Trying to keep my mind alive
And I don't know if I can do it
Oh no I've read too much...
but I haven't read enough

I thought that I heard you laughing
I thought that I heard your ring
I think she thought she saw me cry.

just another manic monday?

wish it would have been...

Friday, May 13, 2011

crispy like a perm

today has been a delightful day. i have nearly slept through the night two days in a row so i feel so much better than usual. i disputed an astronomical gas bill and had it lowered. (still paranoid i read the meter wrong, but i guess we'll find out soon.) i took care of e-mails and calls that were on my to-do list. and although i can't be out there more than a minute, the weather is absolutely gorgeous and it feels beachy :)

also, my husband picked me up and took me out to eat :) he also had a present for me: two gorgeous little plates, one avec l'arc de triomphe et l'autre -- la tour eiffel, bien sur. i look forward to using them.

my workmate came by to chat. she is so articulate and takes time to say her words, softly, almost soothing. i like to hear her talk. she described someone's hair as a perm, and i said, "maybe it's natural?" and she said, "it seems crispy like a perm, or maybe just crispy from dyeing it blond?" which i thought was hilarious. so i wrote it down and now i am telling you.

working the second job tonight. okay with it as i can lie in bed for as long as i want in the morning. (will probably still wake up at 6 or 7, but at least i can be lazy, drink coffee, and hang out with my gorgeous husband.

bon week-end!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

from megan's blog. wow. so true and inspiring.

Several years ago I had a bad month.  I found myself saying, "Gosh, that was a bad month!"  I would repeat it like it was some sort of way to excuse myself from fully engaging in life.  And then it grew to a hard summer - then a hard year - until one day I found myself literally saying, "It's been a hard... two and a half years."  When I said it I wondered, how long is this going to go on?  How long can I give myself a "get out of feeling happy" pass?  Right then and there I knew that even though there had been some legitimately hard things going on, I had to find a way to be happy.

Making yourself happy isn't the easiest thing in the world to do if you've never tried.  I started by putting happy quotes on my wall and repeating them like positive affirmations.  I also tried blocking out all unhappy thoughts.  And though it wasn't overwhelmingly effective -  it slowly began to work.  And then over the next couple of years I came up with several strategies that are my "go-to" activities when I feel the blues coming on.  I don't know if I'm prone to the blues more than most people but I do know it is something I have to stay on top of.  I have had full fledged depression - after the birth of two of my boys and then another especially hard time.  And now, sometimes for a reason and sometimes for no reason at all, I'll have blue times.  But now, as soon as I recognize it, I start down this list.

1. SUN SUN SUN.  First off, I get outside.  I know that sometimes my depression can be coming from something as simple as a vitamin D deficiency.  So, I go sit on my porch with short sleeves and shorts on and soak up some rays.  No, you won't feel completely gleeful after 20 minutes but it WILL help.

2. FOOD  Next, I look at my diet.  Am I eating enough fruits and vegetables?  Am I sad simply because my body doesn't have everything it needs to function?  Am I eating enough?  (That doesn't happen very often).  I will load up on the healthy foods, take a multi-vitamin, and try and be more attentive to my diet.

3. SLEEP  This is a tricky one because when you're depressed you can find yourself sleeping TOO much.  In fact, that was how I discovered I was depressed a few years back.  I would get up, get my kids breakfast and my oldest off to school.  Then I'd stick a movie on for my toddler and go get in bed.  Get up, fix lunch, pick up my oldest, another movie and back to bed.  Luckily, that schedule didn't last too long but it's a bad place to be.  So, now I just make sure I'm getting enough sleep but try to stay away from naps.  Though I LOVE to nap, it doesn't actually help my feel any happier - though going to bed a little earlier does.

4. EXERCISE - I know, I know, boo!  I sometimes wish I didn't know that exercise is so important to happiness - but I do - I KNOW it.  My happiness is often directly linked to the amount of exercise I'm getting.  If I start my day with a jog - even if it's only a slow mile, my day is way better.  I am able to get outside, listen to my feet hitting the ground, my breathing, my heartbeat - I am living in the moment when I run.  It's almost like meditation - it's the best.  I am able to ride the ups and downs way better, I'm more optimistic, and a lot less anxious.  I just feel smooth inside.  And that's a fact, jack.

5. LIMIT MEDIA TIME, INCREASE FACE TIME - Media can be a real drag - and when I say media I mean television, music, and most especially internet.  For me, FACEBOOK is so toxic in large quantities. Instead of sitting down to stare at a contrived world, I walk to a neighbor's and chat.  Also, while you're there - give her a hug or throw some kids in the air.  Humans need to be touched and to touch things.  It can be feeling a soft blanket, kissing a baby, but the best is hugs.  All of that contact seems to get my happy signals flowing again.  It awakens me to the beautiful real world around me.  When I hug Mike after a bad day I let myself imagine that he is squeezing all of that stress and darkness out of me.

6. WASTE POWER.  What I mean by that is I open ALL of my blinds and turn on EVERY light in the room.  I really do believe that our spirits are drawn to and added to by light.   I really need light.  When we were house-hunting - how much light came in was one of the main characteristics I was looking for.  Bright days make me a happier girl.

7. MUSIC - I know, this seems at odds with #5 but this is a very speific use of media.  I don't mean listen to any music all day long.  I mean that I choose specifically uplifting songs and listen to them to get me out of a funk.  I don't lay on my bed and listen to it like an angst filled teenager - I get up, dance, start working on something - I let it get me going.

8. CLEAN/CREATE - these two may not seem related but they are!  Cleaning and creating are times when you take something and make it into something else.  That could be organizing your silverware or knitting a hat.  But a warning, DO NOT try reorganizing a super messy basement when you're depressed - instead start with a small linen closet.  Or just do the dishes.  Cleaning the kitchen, even if I really don't want to, can make me feel better than just about anything.  The act of cleaning requires you to stop thinking so intently about yourself and instead about how to fit a lot of cups in the dishwater.  You feel the water and the bubbles on your hands, you move - it's really effective.   As for creating, just like cleaning, don't start a huge project that will overwhelm you and leave a huge mess to clean up.  Instead, rearrange your furniture or pictures, watercolor with your kids, bake some bread for your friends.  It's really hard to be depressed while standing over the stove-top and smelling yummy food cooking.

9. BUCK UP - This step is one of the most important because if you don't try harder to be happy, none of the first 8 will help.  If you are moping around and feeling sorry for yourself nothing is going to help.  SNAP OUT OF IT!  If I feel those blue thoughts swirling around me I will physically shake them off - I jump up really fast, shake my head, or say out loud, "Get thee hence!"   You've got to try not to think those thoughts or to listen to the father of all lies.  I'm positive that Satan is always watching for moments of weakness when he can start to bring you down into depression - like when you get on the scale, when someone doesn't wave back,  or when you forget to complete something important.  He and his servants are lying in wait to pounce on you at those moments - so you've got to be able to throw them right back where they came from.  Sometimes it's easy and sometimes it's like I'm wrestling with those voices - slowly flicking each and every one away.  But you can get help...

10. FANTASIZE.  Yes, you read that right.  I'm not talking about fantasizing about someone's hot bod - I'm talking about imagining your future life with a lot of hope. This move is surprisingly requiring a lot of faith for me and it's been really hard to feel happy about it all.  So I've been forcing myself to imagine myself there and how happy I'll be.  I imagine myself sitting in my grass on a beautiful evening and being happy.  I imagine future friends, happy holidays, and almost everything.  It's really helped me to be more positive.  Also, sometimes I have "future girl" visit me to tell me how everything is going to be ok.  I imagine my future self coming to me and saying, "Wow, that WAS a hard time, but don't worry - you'll make it through it - and you'll be glad you did.  There are a lot of happy things ahead."  My favorite future girl visit is when she says, "Wow, you are a lot fatter than I remember being!  But don't worry - you won't always be!"  What would your future girl/guy say to you?

10.  PRAY -I used to wait to pray until I was really depressed, but now, as soon as I feel it starting to bug me - as soon as I feel like I'm having a hard time doing #9 - I get down on my knees and ask for help.  And you know what?  Your Heavenly Father loves it.  He KNOWS what you need to do to overcome it.  When I ask for help - sometimes I'll get an idea of what I could do to feel better, sometimes I'll have an easier time remembering why I'm cool and ALWAYS I get added strength.  Sometimes he sends a friend my way, and sometimes he tells me to be the friend to someone else.  We all know service is a really effective way to stop thinking about how terrible your life is...

In the end, I think that depression is the plague of our time - I think it's the most effective way to weaken us and keep up from doing what we were born to do.  I'm not going to murder anyone but I might kill my potential by spending my life unhappy.  But that being said, sometimes depression can be a tool to help you get better.  When I'm depressed I can often figure out why - maybe it's the way I'm spending my time or who I'm spending it with or without.  Depression can act as a barometer to your life - and when you figure out what is amiss, you can change and get better - and HAPPIER!  So, don't stress if you're blue - it's normal!  And maybe my steps won't help you but try them out and figure out your own ten ways to beat the blues.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

my cat is in love with me.

i wrote my husband a message today...apologized for attacking him with kisses and nudges at 5:30 when i was leaving for the early breakfast. i said that i was sorry (not really!) for acting like our cat sir charles (we also have another, but she's a girl, and bitchy, and she (punkinhead) is in love with him.)

sir charles is a boy and he LOVES me. he sleeps by my head, sometimes even letting me use him as a pillow.

my husband replied:

"i'm not sure i remember that, but thanks. he was sitting, hovering over you last night. just staring at you. very creepy."


i long for the "simple" life, and if i lived it, food would be so different...

few additives
not overly processed
few ingredients
fine ingredients
good for me

so different from what we eat now. and not crazy expensive to eat healthier.

however, i work at a fine establishment, and we sometimes get to feast on their delicious offerings. each tuesday, i work an early breakfast, and we often get to eat the spread. this morning we could choose from: fresh fruit, farm fresh eggs, buckwheat pancakes, sorghum butter, housemade bacon, local ham, housemade biscuits, gravy, jam made in-house, local honey, housemade yogurt, and the best granola ever. need something besides coffee? perhaps freshly squeezed juices- orange or grapefruit, or milk from a local creamery.

so we eat this breakfast and feel crazy energized for hours, and don't usually need to eat until dinner. it's not as if we super pig-out. it's because what we are eating are whole foods and wholesome. and of course, mighty tasty.

why today

why today, when i am feeling i look so homely, and my pencil bag with extra erasers is at home,
does my earring back have to go missing?

i can feel really fat and ugly and i put in earrings and voila...i'm better.


i love

cy twombly

read about him here:

farm in washington

i just learned that my friend megan is living in rural washington. living her dream life.
her blog is completely inspiring, entertaining, and beautiful.

i am a bit jealous ;)


even though we ain't got money,
i'm so in love with you honey.

i am all yours.

Monday, May 9, 2011

le travail

mint tea.
homeade shortbread.

good book.
comfortable chair.

occasionally interrupted by people who need something.

ridiculous, but nice.


The sky is grey and the light is far
The sea is a rage within my heart
I turn my sight to the crashing waves
I cry in the night just to be saved

I need eyes to be my guide
I need a voice that’s louder than mine
I need hope I need You
Cause I can’t do this alone

Grace I call Your name
Oh won’t Your smile fall over me
I’m cracked and dry on hands and knees
Oh sweet grace rain down on me I need You grace

I pray for dawn a new day to live
I pray for mercy only Jesus gives
Though darkness falls and a million cry
I believe over all there’s a greater light shining for us

Come down and save me

Thursday, May 5, 2011

who raised you?

an associate of mine just said, exclamatorily, "you look exhausted. are you okay?"

things not to say to a woman: that.

if you think someone looks exhausted, you can ask, "how are you?" and if she chooses to tell you she's tired, you can have a little conversation about it. otherwise, keep your mouth shut.


I believe what i just saw were woodchucks. a mother and one baby. (This isn't my photo.) They were darling and I wished they weren't scared of me. I thought they might be muskrats, or nutria, then perhaps groundhogs? but then i found the description of woodchucks, that they are in Arkansas, and that they do occasionally (voluntarily) swim. (I was walking along the river.) I can only hope I see them again. I know right where to look.  :)

dear GOd


not mine, but i like it.

She finally accepted it was out of her hands. She gave up worrying. Just like that.
The weight still hung around her neck like an anchor. The fear of [rejection] still
clung to her like wet clothing. But she would not worry.
She pushed it to the side as if it was a curtain, only in the way.

She would not worry.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011


with the cold, cheap beer in her iced tea glass, drunk by nine in the morning, she would settle into her routine. a tuna sandwich for lunch everyday. a nap, and another drink to ease the pain. a phone call to her brother. listening for the postman while pretending to watch t.v.

and always spending hours and minutes dreaming of the two husbands she lost; one by divorce, one by death.

i visited often and listened to her stories, and always about how the electric shock therapy caused her watch to keep funny time.

i miss her in the early morning.


i remember my bitterness and gall
     and my soul is downcast within me.

YET this i recall to mind and therefore i have hope:
because of the LORD's great love we are not consumed.
 His mercies are new every morning.

 great is His faithfulness.




--e.e. cummings

need a laugh?

today i needed a laugh. so i read SEINLANGUAGE. seinfeld always makes me laugh. highly recommended if you need to relieve some stress.

a beautiful day

the groom wore shorts :)


Monday, May 2, 2011


I taught high school for a couple of years. the following is an example of a typical day...

So its near the end of the class period, near the end of the day
The students of third year French have (somewhat) diligently finished an exam

One student requests a trip to the little boys room
i say little boys room, yet he is of driving age

Being that some chocolate sounds beyond satisfying,
i grant his wish and request he do me a favor

"Do you know so-and-so, in this office"


"Would you go get a miniature peppermint patty for me?"


This task seems easy enough, i continue my work at the computer.
He returns, empty-handed
"She was having a meeting with some other people"
i asked who, he told me that besides my secretary friend there was another secretary, the prinicipal, and the assistant principal.
i am disappointed, but understand.

i find out that he
A. knocked on the freakin door
the assistant principal answered
B. he states, for all to hear, "Ms. Spencer wants a york peppermint patty."
quel surprise, he was turned away

if i could have kicked him in the rear, i would have

wine wednesday

wine wednesday. what a splendid idea :)
a couple of weeks ago, my husband and i decided to eat as if we had four times as much money as we do. it was grand. tapas, bread, bottle of wine (half-off!), sharing two entrees over good conversation. a tiny dessert (that he didn't want, and then ate most of...). it helped me to relax and re-evaluate and reminded me that everything will be okay.

ideally i would cook more than i do (while drinking wine and listening to good music) but i lack the time. i also lack the shopping/planning skills. there was one time in my life, besides when i lived in paris, that i actually took time to cook each day. i was on holiday visiting my sister and her children in australia for 2 months. while they were away at work and school, i would decide the menu, shop (sometimes making 2 trips to the store), and then start the preparations. nothing short of lovely...

last night, i settled on making a casserole-like dish. (i am anti-casserole, as i grew up served too many. now i know why. easy!) chicken spaghetti. my husband loved it. and it will be delicious as leftovers tuesday and wednesday nights for him. i will be away at my glamorous second job both nights.

so, this wednesday the forecast calls for no wine-ing...


it is 51 degrees and raining.

i am reading: TOAST: THE STORY OF A BOY'S HUNGER by Nigel Slater
                    PROUST WAS A NEUROSCIENTIST by Jonah Lehrer
                    Whole Living

i am listening: bjorkestra

i am eating a gala apple.

i am hoping my blog turns into a book turns into a movie.


i live my life in widening circles
that spread out across the world...
and it hurts.

but i have a hard time loving those i encounter now.
i can only suppose it is because i was happier then.

i will take the time to be happy.

seas of lavendar

I used to travel frequently, leaving the country two or three times a year.
      I used to write.
I laughed more; seldom did I shed tears.
  I thought about others more than myself.

I will do these things, be this person, again.

I've always longed for the simple life.

take moments to experience your senses. share your encounters. tell your stories, even if no one listens.
I will do this here. and be happy.


and you who have always thought
of happiness rising
would feel the emotion that almost
whenever happiness falls.