Interstellar Adventures

May 5, 2009

I Ran

Filed under: Running Life — by InterstellarLass @ 9:52 pm

Saturday I ran a half marathon. 13.1 miles in Indianapolis. It felt good. Wheels started to come off around mile 11, but I managed to keep my rusty bolts together and crossed the finish line near my goal. Need to reset/confirm a goal here soon to keep it up.

February 15, 2009

Flip Side

Filed under: Uncategorized — by InterstellarLass @ 12:05 pm

I hate that it took me 54:24 to run 4 miles today.

On the other hand, I ran 4 miles today.

December 19, 2008

knock on wood

Filed under: Uncategorized — by InterstellarLass @ 8:20 pm

I’m about to go play my first soccer game since…elementary school? Pray that I don’t break, tear or otherwise injure anything.

December 15, 2008

Nothing like a party to make a house a home

Filed under: Family & Friends,Interstellar Casa,Mr. Wonderful,Texas Life,Uncategorized — by InterstellarLass @ 12:40 am

I finally got around to having a “Housewarming Party” nearly six months after we moved in. Which is exactly what I needed to get touch-ups done and pictures hung on the wall. I’m not proclaiming that all boxes are unpacked. No, in fact, quite a few got stuffed into closets. But the walls have less spackle-patches and paint splotches, and there are pictures on the walls.

Nick let out his inner decorating diva and made the place all Christmassy. Except for the tree, the majority of the decorating was done by him, with some suggestions (and some nixing of ideas) from me. His favorite idea took a while to come by, and also conquered one of our decorating challenges – the stairwell landing wall. Going through a bunch of crap at my mom’s house this fall, I came upon a bunch of old LPs. Which I greedily took and didn’t offer to share with my sibs. I’ve picked up a few more LPs at a discount book store, and bought a turn table. So we picked our favorites of some album artwork and used LP frames to make art!

Saturday I roasted and turkey and warmed up a ham, and my friends brought over side-dishes and desserts, and we had an in-law-less Christmas dinner. ALL contributions to the dinner were excellent, including some perfectly spicy jalapeno au gratin potatoes, and some beyond delicious creamed brussel sprouts. My friend Steph also brought me some beautiful flowers and champagne, which I will soon enjoy in some mimosas.

I also made Christmas sugar cookies with royal icing. Not something I will sanely choose to do again. It took me forever to get the cookies rolled out and cut. The recipe I found called for the dough to be chilled. My friend that makes the most beautiful decorated cookies told me I had the wrong recipe – hers don’t get chilled. Then, the icing. Everywhere. What a mess! I didn’t even decorate all the ones I baked, and I was exhausted. So much so that I forgot to make my cranberry sauce and only had jellied sauce. So now I have two bags of cranberries. They’ll get used though, so no worries. No one stayed too late. Mostly because I now live in BFE, and I know that it took some people about 45 minutes at least to get home.

I love my house. Just sometimes I wish I could pick it up and land, Dorothy-style, somewhere else. Except I love driving up the two-lane, tree-lined asphalt road to get home some days. For about 45 seconds I don’t feel like I live in one of the largets metropolitain areas in the nation. I like the ranch that I drive by on my way to work every day. And it tickled me to no end to see them harvesting crops at the end of the summer. But all around are new subdivisions (yes, the builders are actually still building, though not as fast), and the roads are scheduled to be widened, and then I will have to move somewhere else in 10 years to get away from it.

I can’t wait to have more parties at my house. Good thing I have so many beds! My friends can all stay the night if they decide they don’t want to drive all those miles back home.

December 10, 2008

Still Kickin’ It

I’m sure this place barely has a pulse. And this is probably a lame attempt at CPR. But, nonetheless, here I am. My friend Ben decided to check up on me and pushed me just enough to get me to post. I like it when people care. :)

Since we moved, Pop passed away, the kids started new schools, Nick went back to school, and work started kicking my ass, I haven’t been inspired to post much. Many of my thoughts made me sound like a whiney-ass bitch, and though I am, I still don’t want to sound like it.

Elle’s birthday came and went and we had a slumber party with 10+ 9-10 year olds. I realized several things that night. First, Elle has some serious bossiness issues, and I (privately) told her she was acting like a brat at her own party. Second, I wanted to tell about 5 other girls at the parties that I thought they were being bratty, but they were not my kids, so I just reminded them to play nice. Thirdly, I wished I could tell 5 other parents that their preshus babees are brats, but they are soccer parents and we have to play nice. Fourth, I hoped that Elle never acts the way these girls did when I’m not around. Fifth, it will be a long time before I have another slumber party for little girls.

Zed nearly failed algebra (8th grade honors math) last six weeks. This was the first time I’ve ever really had to ride him about his grades. He has taken on a lot more school work this year, with 3 honors classes, and he has been involved in athletics, which takes extra time. But he also lazes around a lot. Mostly he’s been a great teenager though. So far. Knock on wood. He picked it up, and we haven’t had any issues since. I know it will make you all jealous, but the worst problem I have with him is that he leaves his bike in the driveway. I know, I know. He’s too good!

Nick has been having some health issues, and near the end of the summer was diagnosed with Hemochromatosis. Basically my baby is Iron Man. Literally. He retains high levels of iron in his blood, which is extremely toxic, and can cause life-threatening side effects and diseases if not treated. Fortuately his diagnosis was made very early (I can be very persuasive) and tests revealed no damage to organs commonly affected. He has visisted a stream of doctors as a result, and we are still trying to get everything into balance through regular treatment. But he is still plagued by some of the side effects of the disorder, but is actually getting better, though some days it doesn’t seem that way. He has also gone back to school, and is working on finishing his associates before transferring to a four-year program.

And I have been working my tail off. And staying at very nice hotels when traveling. And meeting really cool people while I’m on the road. I’ve been sticking my neck out into some uncomfortable territory, creating a role, and lining myself up to be promoted into it. Which, as brave as I appear to be on the outside, I am really a scared little chicken-shit on the inside. The first time I gave my pitch I finished with a very wet shirt back and waistband. I hate it when I get all nervous and my voice wavers and my hands shake. I can do this dammit!

My birthday has come and gone as well. I’m now in my “mid-thirties” and I think I’m starting to show my age. Seems like the skin on the cheeks isn’t as smooth and shiney as it used to be. And my hands are starting to look old too. I’m moisturizing like a mad woman, trying to get back that baby smooth feel.

So all in all, yes Ben, I’m OK. Just busy living, turning my new house into a home, trying to bring home more bacon, and loving my family more and more every day. I’ll try to do a better job of being around. Things are staring to get interesting again, and I’m feeling pretty good after this post. Mwah!

September 10, 2008

Republican vs Democrat

Filed under: Funnies — by InterstellarLass @ 8:56 am

 

A woman in a hot air balloon realized she was lost. She lowered her altitude and spotted a man in a boat below. She shouted to him, ‘Excuse me, can you help me? I promised a friend I would meet him an hour ago, but I don’t know where I am.

The man consulted his portable GPS and replied, ‘You’re in a hot air balloon, approximately 30 feet above a ground elevation of 2346 feet above sea level. You are at 31 degrees, 14.97 minutes north latitude and 100 degrees, 49.09 minutes west longitude.

She rolled her eyes and said, ‘You must be a Republican.

‘I am,’ replied the man. ‘How did you know?

‘Well,’ answered the balloonist, ‘everything you told me is technically correct, but I have no idea what to do with your information, and I’m still lost. Frankly, you’ve not been much help to me.

The man smiled and responded, ‘You must be a Democrat.

‘I am,’ replied the balloonist. ‘How did you know?

‘Well,’ said the man, ‘you don’t know where you are or where you are going. You’ve risen to where you are due to a large quantity of hot air. You made a promise that you have no idea how to keep and you expect me to solve your problem. You’re in exactly the same position you were in before we met, but, somehow, now it’s my fault.

August 15, 2008

In Beijing it’s a stomach bug

Filed under: It's Me, Lass,Training — by InterstellarLass @ 10:35 am

Perhaps the Olympics inspired me. On Monday, I started boot camp. I wasn’t nervous, though it seems I should have been. I wasn’t too excited about our first ‘activity’. It seems there were some birthdays for some of the ladies in the class. So, at 5:30 on a Monday morning, there were 20-30 grown women running around a parking lot like crazy fiends, with balloons tied to our shoes, trying to ‘pop’ others’ balloons, while protecting ours from danger. This is not how we get me to participate in things – by starting off with goofy-ass games I mean.

Our workout was quickly interrupted by rain, so we moved from the parking lot to a semi-covered but partially flooded pavillion. The rest of the workout was typical I thought, and when I left, I felt that I hadn’t worked hard enough.

Oh silly me. By the time I got home, my muscles started to ache, and I could tell that I had put in enough effort. Way more effort than I should have probably. This was total head to toe pain. By the time I got to work, getting in and out of my chair was a workout itself.

On Tuesday, my phone alarm at 4:30 am brought a groan. Still sore and barely able to don my sports bra and tie my shoes without grimacing severely, I still made it to boot camp. I actually enjoyed that morning’s workout, even though they were called ‘suicides’. But at home, things quickly went from bad to worse. The pain in all my muscles was constant and throbbing. Not a good sign. By the time I made it to work, I knew I was going to come down sick. And, just as I predicted, that afternoon I started running a fever.

A visit to my chiro gave me brief respite. Bless the stim machine and hot pads. I continued to run a low-grade fever Tuesday night into Wednesday morning. I emailed in sick to the boot camp instructor and my project manager. I didn’t go to the doctor. After Nick made me take a cold bath, my fever broke, and I thought I was on my way to recovery. Then the throat started to hurt.

Wednesday night I tossed and turned on the couch, trying to stay away from Nick so my sickness didn’t spread around the house. My throat felt like I was choking down hot, spiked coals. I didn’t sleep well, and when I looked in the mirror, I looked like a puffer fish. OK, slight exaggeration, but that’s what it felt like anyway.

Thursday morning I called my Dr and got an appointment. The rapid strep test came back negative. On Monday the lab culture will come back to confirm the negative diagnosis. I shoveled four ibuprofen and some Mucinex D and headed to work. People looked at me warily, and I croaked around all afternoon.

Before I sat down to watch the hours and hours of Olympics coverage on my DVR, I shoveled another 4 ibuprofen and some Mucinex D. Then I tossed and turned on the couch, the hot, spikey coals having returned. We are talking excruciating pain when I swallow, from the bottom of my jaw, up to my ears, which feel like they are stuffed with cotton.

I’ve missed 3 days of boot camp, which wasn’t cheap. I’m sure the instructor thinks I’m a total flake, making excuses because I’m a pansy. I assure you this is not true. I haven’t been sick in years, and now I’ve got this strange, random throat issue. Ibuprofen dulls the pain and swelling to a bearable level, but I’m not getting any better. One of the ladies at work mentioned a throat virus that’s been going around, saying it last weeks, ebbing, then returning. I am not cool with this. I don’t have a couple of weeks to be sick. I have boot camp and the corporate challenge going on this next month or so, and I don’t have time to be sick!

So, for now, I’m probably going to OD myself on ibuprofen and Mucinex D, gargle warm salt water frequently, and pray that my mystery illness magically disappears. My one hope is that if I’m not better Monday, my boot camp instructor will let me move to the next session so I can recover and not lose my investment. I can bowl for the corporate team with a sore throat, but other events like kickball, the bike ride, run, swimming, etc. I can’t do while I’m down without making myself worse.

It’s days like today when I wish I had access to the Olympic physicians and trainers, and thankful I’m not being dope tested.

August 2, 2008

How’s that now???

Filed under: It's Me, Lass,Rants & Opinions — by InterstellarLass @ 11:11 pm

I spent part of another day at my mom’s house today, helping her reduce from a 3/2 home to a 1/1 apartment. The going, she is slow. But, we are making progress. One of the things I am taking from the house is my mom’s dining room furniture, china, crystal, and flatware. My mom is a little sad, because it’s the one ‘super nice thing’ that she has, but apartment ‘dining’ rooms are, let’s say, tiny, and it just won’t fit.

So, today I was there, helping her pack it all up. We did an inventory of all the items, looked up replacement values (for insurance purposes), and packed and wrapped and boxed. I quickly figured out the packing stuff I had purchased at my local UHaul place just weren’t going to be enough, so we went to the one by her house.

I had a long wait at both UHaul locations today. It’s 105 in Texas, and people still have to move. UGH! So, we grabbed the extra dish kits and glass kits we needed, along with the boxes, and stood in line forever. Please note my use of the word “kit” in the previous sentence. This is where it gets fuzzy.

On the packaging, the ‘kit’ says it includes the packing foamy pouch thingys, the box insert forms, and a box. The thing is, the boxes are also sold separately, which must have just caused a ton of confusion for our UHaul Salesman #2. Salesman #1 at my store was quite competent, and rang my purchases up, no problem, even getting the boxes for me that were included in my kit that I neglected to pick up.

I knew I was in trouble when Salesman #2 asked me how many boxes I had. “I have four boxes, one for each kit I bought” I replied. “Well, they’re not included you know, so I have to charge for those.” I raised an eyebrow. “Really? Because on the package here it says (pointing): Kit includes: Bullet Point 1 – foam pouch thingys, Bullet Point 2 – box insert forms, Bullet Point 3 – Box.” To which he replied, “Yeah, I know that’s what it says, but the box isn’t included.”

I was floored. Clearly on the packaging it said box included. Salesman #1 told me box was included, and did not charge me for box. Salesman #2 obviously has issues with interpreting the written word. “I’m sorry, but I really believe the box is included, so I need you to ask someone else about this.” So, he whipped out his cell phone and called his manager. “Are boxes included in the dish and glass kits?” he asked. “Oh they are, for reals?” I about fell over.

Yeah, for reals, they are included. But wait! There’s more!

While Salesman #2 and I are having our training session, a girl who had previously been at the counter interrupts our discussion, needing to provide whatever thing she didn’t provide before in order to vacate the premises with a truck. Salesman #2 finishes the call with the manager, hangs up the phone, backs out my entire transaction, and finishes off the young *ahem* lady, then re-rings me up. I still can’t figure out why he couldn’t back out my four boxes, charge me, and let me leave.

Customer service. Don’t expect it at UHaul. But hey, at least I didn’t pay an extra $20 for boxes.

July 28, 2008

Feels like…what?

Filed under: Interstellar Casa,It's Me, Lass — by InterstellarLass @ 9:28 pm

We’ve been in the new house for 6 weeks now. Well, one month and seven days anyway. And it still doesn’t feel like home yet. I mean sure, there’s the unfolded laundry on the bed, the dishes in the sink, and who knows what the kids’ rooms look like. But the feeling of ‘home’ eludes me still.

I haven’t gotten to my routine of grocery shopping and cooking yet, meaning we’ve been eating out way too much. I have made a few meals here on my new gas stove. And the gas stove still frightens me. Especially when I use the oven. I know the inspector inspected it and gave it all thumbs up (heated to a perfect 350F when set at 350F), but the on and off noises freak me out. And things cook faster, and handles get hotter. I still haven’t rearranged the kitchen from when my sister-in-law helpfully unpacked.

Our bedroom is done, for now. I have a drapery issue to overcome. But the painting and furniture is done. The new living room furniture is all here now. The backordered ottoman/coffee table arrived last week. The kids rooms are 80% unpacked. Nick’s office is shaping up nicely. My office has picture frames and books on the floor still. I’ll move my mom’s dining room furniture in the next week or so. The guest/craft room upstairs will continue to have it’s door closed. The guest/storage room upstairs will continue to wait on Nick to find the bed frame screws. I have about a hundred billion spackle spots to sand down (and then paint) on all the walls in this house. And I still have screws to pull from the high spots on the stairwell landing.

I will continue to look at my yard and it’s complete lack of landscaping, combined with it’s pleothora of weeds and cringe at the thought of trying to do even a little yard work in our sweltering 100+F degree days. Mowing is a pre-dawn activity around here. And the neighbors don’t get mad, because they’re all up doing their own yards. I continue to look at my back yard and laugh at myself that I thought I was going to get a garden planted back there next spring. I’d better start saving my sheckles.

Maybe it will start to feel more like home when the kids come back next week. July has alternately dragged and sped by. They’re staying a couple of extra days since we needed to juggle the weekend visitation schedule so they’re with their dad the weekend he gets married. Am I the only one that thinks 13 and 9 are too old for a ring bearer and flower girl? Not my event though, so I bit my tongue at that news.

I’m not sure what to do ‘next’ on the list. It all seems to happen on a whim. I’ll walk in the door from work, get an urge to hang a picture, get tired of looking for the hammer, grab my sanding block and sand a few spackle spots until my arm is tired, and then move a box from one room to another before sitting down, exhausted and go to bed watch a few episodes of Deadliest Catch off my DVR. (Sig & Phil are my favorites. Sig’s brother Edgar is totally insane, but is the closest person I can think of to a real-life MacGyver.)

It will all get done over time, I know. But my perfectionist ‘get it done right now!’ attitude is irritating me. And if I can’t make it perfect, I’m not going to bother to do it at all. Yeah, I know. I’ve got a sickness. And it wasn’t even all my years of therapy that helped me figure that out.

July 21, 2008

Fun & Educational

Filed under: It's Me, Lass — by InterstellarLass @ 9:22 pm

The brilliance of putting things into a blender is on par with watching CDs flash lightening in a microwave. But when it’s educational too, I give it an extra rating star.

Update: Trying to update the link. Sorry this hasn’t been working.

Who knew you could do this with sugar?

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