Friday Round-Up

April 7, 2017 at 2:23 pm (Uncategorized) (, , , , , )

As usual, my brain has been a little all over the place lately. I’ve been dealing with some family stuff that isn’t exactly fun and while it’s not over yet, some of the biggest hurdles have been crossed. I think. I hope. Because my head is more than a little spazzy, I’m going to let loose with my post to get some stuff out.

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Right?

It’s been raining for like three weeks and the sun came out today and I had almost forgotten what it looked like. I felt like a vampire and not in the sexy way. However, the juxtaposition of the first sunny day also being the first day our new “President” drops bombs on a struggling country without Congressional approval is somewhat difficult to align. I cried this week watching videos of Syrian children gasping for breath and I cannot imagine seeing that happen to my family. I don’t think there are any good or easy answers to these issues but I don’t see how fighting violence with violence will put an end to violence. Fighting a war for peace is sort of like having sex for the sake of virginity. But I’m not someone who gets to make those decisions so I will sit here and stare at my phone and think “What fresh hell is this” every time I get a new news alert.

What else. There are positive things even in the darkness and today I found some unexpected money that will go to a deserving person. I’m having a good hair day. And I think Scott and I convinced the guys in the apartment we’ll be moving into to move out a day or so early, which will help us save tons of cold hard cash when it comes to hiring our own movers. So that’s a win! I’m working all night at the Field Museum tonight and will get to spend my evening surrounded by excited kids, taxidermied animals and dinosaur bones. So clearly my Friday will be cooler than yours. And it’s going to be warm and STILL sunny this weekend so I plan on enjoying the crap out of our weather.

Also. I have Jury Duty next week for the first time ever and I’m pretty freaking excited about it. I really want to be chosen and am trying to determine a good way to ensure I do so without making the court think I’m a crazy person. I just want to see the judicial system in action and don’t even care if it’s for something like a traffic violation. This is my civic right so let me at it!

I still have great friends and great family and a great husband and I’m trying not to take the good things in my life for granted while I also fight off the bad. That’s all anyone can hope for, right?

And hey, at least it’s Friday!

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The Little Things

November 30, 2016 at 3:31 pm (Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , )

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Truth.

Change is hard. Growing up is harder. My life has changed a lot this year and promises to change even more in 2017 so I’m having a hard time just keeping up. Some of these changes are good and some I didn’t exactly see coming but I’m doing my best to stay positive through everything. And in order to do that, I’m going to focus on the good things I’ve got going for me. This is a little late for Thanksgiving but it’s never too late to give thanks!

  • I have a great family and I love them all (even the ones who drive me crazy. And vote for Trump…). My family isn’t perfect but we care about each other and do what it takes to ensure we’re all relatively taken care of.
  • I have a great husband and he does things like buy me flowers and chocolates and wine on days that I snap at him on the phone (this may or may not have happened just today). He’s my best friend, he has my back and I love him.
  • I have great friends as well and they supported me through quite a bit this year. Some of them also danced on a stripper pole at my bachelorette party so clearly they are all awesome people.
  • I have a very good job that I seem to do very well. Or so I’m told. I like the people I work with and the work I do and I am thankful for the opportunities, perks and benefits that I receive through my employment. Hell, just a few years ago I was laid off right around now so I’m thankful to be employed at all! But I’m even more thankful to be where I am.
  • I live in a great city full of interesting, new and exciting things to do. And I even go out and do some of them! Chicago allows me to flourish in my geeky ways and places like The Field Museum only contribute to that. I’m grateful to live in a place that allows me to do so many different things and love so many different kinds of people.
  • I’m healthy and most of my loved ones are fairly healthy as well. Yes, I lost my grandfather this year but it was one of those deaths that was bittersweet…I miss him every day but know he’s better off and I’m thankful for the all the time we shared. Most everyone else I truly care about are in decent health as well and I can only hope that continues to hold true.

I have many other things I can be thankful for but having my loved ones in my life, a decent job and a roof over my head are all that really matters so I’m going to end there. And no matter what the upcoming year brings, I have a few things that will always make me smile!

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Hospitals and Old Men

May 22, 2013 at 10:22 am (Uncategorized) (, , , , , , )

Thankfully, these two things are not related (at least not in this post).

I know three different women who are undergoing surgeries or procedures in hospitals today, in three different states.  The one in Louisville has already come out of it and seems to be doing just fine, so long as she doesn’t share any embarrassing details of her sex life with her mother as she’s all doped up on the ride home.  A family member in Houston who has already faced way, way too many surgeries and health issues to count is going through yet another surgery today and will likely be in the hospital for the next five days or so.  Luckily, she’s one of the strongest women I know and I have no doubt she’ll prove that yet again with this latest trial.  Lastly, an old high school friend of mine in Florida is undergoing surgery to remove her breast today after she was recently diagnosed with breast cancer.  She’s also very resilient and I know she’ll pull through this just fine.  She’s got a 6-year-old daughter and it reminds me of when my own mother battled breast cancer in her mid-30’s.  My sister and I did shots of tequila with her in Mexico to celebrate her 20th anniversary of being cancer free and I’m sure my old friend will one day be able to do the same with her own girl.

Just because my Papa likes lighthouses. And it’s an appropriate picture for today.

In the midst of all this anxiety, there are also things to celebrate.  My grandfather (my mom’s dad) is turning 85-years-young today.  Sure, he’s not as spry and agile as he used to be but he’s got vitality in his own way and he’ll get riled up to prove it.  My Papa is one of my favorite people (even when he’s being a cantankerous old grouch) and he’s taught me so much in the time I’ve been able to share with him.  For instance, I put a little bit of sugar into my tomato based dishes as it takes away some of the acidity and makes the whole thing sweeter – apparently all of my family does this because of him.  He also taught me the easiest way to crack and egg and that torn pieces of bread placed in a bowl and doused with milk and sugar makes a fairly decent breakfast cereal (don’t knock it ’til you’ve tried it).  Besides some culinary tricks of the trade, my Papa also taught me most of what I know about family.  He worked hard all his life to provide for his wife and six children and he loves all of us, including his nine grandchildren and five great-grandchildren, as much as anyone possibly could.  If he had his way he would give us every cent to his name and have us all living within 10 feet of his house.  He may not get around as well as he used to but I talk to him 3 to 4 times a week and he’s as sharp as he ever was.  I hope I’m as smart as he is when I’m 85.

I wish I could be with all three of my female friends and my grandpa today but unfortunately, I have yet to discover the secrets of breaking the space/time continuum.  Which means I’m stuck in my office.  However I’ll be thinking of everyone today and sending them all my love and healthy thoughts, as well as checking in as often as I can.  If you could put out a few good and positive vibes as well, we would all appreciate it!

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10 Years is a Long Time

May 9, 2013 at 11:41 am (Uncategorized) (, , )

I’m sure you’ve heard about the three women and young girl who were freed in Cleveland, OH, after being held captive by a deranged man for over ten years (and if you haven’t, you can read about it via CNN here).  Stuff like this really blows my mind.  Remember the completely warped man in Austria who held his daughter captive in an underground complex for 24 years?  Can you even imagine?  I know I can’t.

Seriously, stories like this put every single bad day I’ve ever had into perspective.   Oh, my train was late and my student loan bill is due?  Boo freaking hoo.  I can’t help but think of all the things I’ve done in ten years and it makes my heart break that these women were being abused and repressed in a tiny house for that entire time.  I started and graduated from college, traveled to 9 countries, enjoyed quite a few relationships and friendships, held nearly a dozen jobs in three different cities and learned countless things about myself and our world.  In short, I’ve gotten to live while some worthless excuse for a human being took that right away from these women.  And what’s really scary is that they were right under the noses of so many people!  Makes you wonder what exactly is going on behind the closed doors of every house you pass each night, doesn’t it?

I hope that the victims here are eventually able to live a somewhat normal, healthy life.  They certainly deserve it.  And I’ll try not to let the little things bother me so much because I have so much to be thankful for – if you’re reading this, you probably do too.

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Quarter Life Crisis?

March 1, 2013 at 12:56 pm (Uncategorized) (, , , , , , )

For whatever reason, I feel like I’ve been having a late quarter life crisis this week.  I thought that those were supposed to hit in your early 20’s, about the time you graduated from college and realized you had no idea what to do with the rest of your life, but apparently my crisis is a late bloomer.  I’m not sure what’s going on but I just feel…amiss.  I’m bummed that my job isn’t exactly my dream job and while I keep my eyes and ears open for new opportunities, it’s a harsh reality that I can’t really afford to do what I really want to (i.e. go back to school or maybe work for a non-profit).  My ugly student loan situation ruins lots of the big plans and ideas I have and it’s never really easier to deal with.  Perhaps when I’m 55 and have it all paid off I can go back to school but man, that’s a long way out.

Thank you, thank you very much.

It seems like all my friends are getting married and having babies and while I honestly don’t want to have to deal with either of those things anytime soon, it feels like I should want that.  You know?  Or maybe you don’t.  I’m not sure how to really describe the feelings I’ve been having and I’m sure this post seems scattered and confusing, but I’m hoping it’ll help to let some of this out.  The rational part of me knows that I’ve actually got it pretty good – my bills are paid, I’m able to save, and my financial situation isn’t nearly as dire as I sometimes think it is.  I’ve got great friends, a great family, a great boyfriend, I’m still able to travel etc., but I still feel like I should be doing more.  When I was growing up I envisioned myself having a job where I was able to actually help people on a daily basis and I just don’t feel like I’m making the sort of difference I should be.  I know that some people are finding relief due to my bankruptcy work but it’s not really tangible.  And I also know that I’m helping people out at the food pantry I volunteer at and as a Docent at the Field Museum but…it still doesn’t feel like it’s enough.  Which is crap, because all of those things are satisfying in their own ways!

I’ve got a plan to take some sort of class this year, whether it’s a language course, dance class, or cooking class.  I miss learning on a frequent basis and even if I can’t afford to actually go back to school, I can still try new things.  I’ll be training for new exhibits at the museum all month so I’m really looking forward to those lectures, at least.

But back to the crisis – just what is wrong with me?  I need to put on my big girl panties and suck it up.  Maybe this is all just PMS, or perhaps I am in dire need of a vacation.  It seems like everyone around me is planning one trip or another in the upcoming months and I just filed my taxes, so perhaps planning something for Scott and I is on the horizon as well.  This crisis I’m having this week could also be weather related, as we’re currently in the long stretch of  Chicago winter and it feels like sunlight and warmth will never make appearances ever again.

Well.  I do feel a bit better after venting, and at least it’s Friday – and someone finally cleaned out that stinky fridge in the corner.  Onward and upward!

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Circle of Life

October 30, 2012 at 3:10 pm (Uncategorized) (, , , , , )

You can’t go far today without hearing about SuperStorm Sandy and the havoc she’s wreaking.  I’m seeing something like almost 40 deaths and untold millions (billions?) of dollars in damages.  I have friends on the East Coast and while I believe everyone is accounted for, there are still many people who I do not know who aren’t and my thoughts are with all of them.  I think that weather like this is going to be more prevalent in the future and I hope that the damage done through this storm remains as minimal as possible.

In unrelated but also depressing news, yesterday I found out that a work associate of mine had a massive stroke over the weekend and was removed from life support yesterday.  He passed away last night.  This was a middle-aged business owner who cared for his ailing wife and large business but always managed to have a smile on his face as he brought donuts into our office for his regular meetings.  I saw him on Thursday and he seemed in as good as spirits as he ever has.  Sudden deaths like his and those in the eye of Sandy definitely make me appreciate all of the people in my life and just about everything else I can.

Cue the music

In the midst of all this, my cousin gave birth to her first child last night, a little boy who weighed in at 8lbs, 8oz.  This is a cousin that is more like a sister to me and as the pictures started rolling in, tears nearly rolled down my face.  It’s incredible to think that he was growing inside of her just moments before those photos were taken and I’m so excited that his delivery went well for both him and his momma.  Granted, she pushed for almost three hours before eventually having a c-section (um, ouch) but the look on her face in the first picture I saw made it clear that the whole ordeal was more than worth it.

All this has me in kind of a weird mood today (not to mention the fact that I’ve been fighting off a cold all week and have that medicine head thing going on) and I’m more thankful for everything in my life than ever before.

Especially for the fact that I’m not going to be pushing an almost nine pound person out of my nether regions any time soon.

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