Interstellar Adventures

June 28, 2007

14 hours later

Filed under: Elle & Zed,Family & Friends,Interstellar Casa,Interstellar Travel,It's Me, Lass — by InterstellarLass @ 9:35 pm

Thankfully, my flight home was uneventful. Except for the hour we sat on the tarmac after the plane parked in our gate blew his generator, thankfully on the ground. But we had to wait for another gate to clear. Tuesday wasn’t so great. After watching The Storm that ate Oklahoma ground our plane out of OKC, our 1:50 pm flight turned into an 8 pm flight on another airline. And when the baggage door came off the plane, another two hours later we finally took off in the driving rain. My knuckles are just now recovering their color. We finally pulled into the hotel 14.5 hours after we left our offices.

I’ve been traveling for three straight weeks. My frequent flyer mile bank has increased while my tiredness level has increased at an exponetial rate. Thankfully I’m done with planes and automobiles for the near future. One cool thing out of this trip though was that we discovered a new flight web site called Flight Aware. You can look at flight status information even for flights currently in the air. We watched our flight come in to the airport while we waited.

I’ve missed my kids and my hubby. Elle had a bit of an issue at day camp on Tuesday. She got into a fight. After a boy called her gay. After she got upset that he wouldn’t share his Cheetos. If only my problems were that small. Still, it’s wrong for her to get in a fight, especially with a boy, especially when she lands more hits. And on Sunday she and Zed go to their dad’s. I think she’s a little emotional because of that and the fact that I’ve been out of town so much. I haven’t been on a buiness trip in years, and to have three weeks full of it, it’s a little upsetting to schedules and such. So I wasn’t too hard on her, but did make clear to her that her actions were very out of line.

I know I’m sucking at keeping up with posts that are worth your time. I’ve been a lot busier lately, especially with a job, where, for the first time in a long time, I actually have a project that requires more than 5% of my mental function. Add that with monitoring the sale of Pop’s house, the planning of touch-ups to our house, and the browsing of available real estate, and I’m toast. I’ve thought about giving this up, if not for good, at least for a while. Maybe I won’t for now. It’s just a thought. But for right now, my 12 year old baby is asking for some cuddle time, which is rare, so I’d better take advantage of it while I can.

June 21, 2007

I think I’ll burn my bra

Filed under: Interstellar Travel,It's Me, Lass — by InterstellarLass @ 7:43 pm

But not for feministic reasons. But rather because it smells like it was put in a smokebox. And it was. We went to a local bar last night. Paid our $1 membership fee. Had to fill out a form to get it too. I thought it was maybe for Homeland Security. But it’s just to buy beer. The membership will probably be used again the next time I come out here.

After a mediocre dinner where my steak came with the post that said M RARE but was actually cooked WELL, we went to play some foosball. I’m not a talent at such bar games, but I managed to hold my own for awhile and my partner and I won at least 1 game. At least I didn’t have to hold my head in shame.

By 11 pm I was toast, having still not recovered my drinkin legs after the debauchery of the previous week. Today was a full day, and I needed my beauty sleep. This morning I checked my upper-half undergarment and immediately put it in the bottom of the plastic laundry bag, and topped it with my outfit from last night. Fortunately I thought to bring a spare holder for the twins, and we managed not to go out tonight, so I’ll be in the clear tomorrow.

My first ride here on the commuter jet was a little sketchy at parts. My ears still hurt from the noise. And the fact that the pressurized cabin was just pressurized enough to sustain life. I was popping my ears every five minutes. And that not-so-brief segment of turbulence nearly caused me to lose my venti latte. Hopefully the ride home tomorrow is a bit more smooth, especially since the plane is full.

June 15, 2007

Take me home, please

Filed under: Interstellar Travel,It's Me, Lass — by InterstellarLass @ 9:48 pm

3 am Wednesday came waaaay to early. On the flight to Baltimore I slept in 15 minute spurts. The meetings were long, followed by a long, long night. Dinner followed by play time followed by a visit to a really cool Irish bar where we hung around until last call. I vaguely remember getting a cab back to the hotel, not being able to find my room key, then it miraculously appearing out of my purse. 8 am Thursday came waaaay to early. I don’t know how I managed the morning. By the skin of my teeth really. And I do think they had skin, even though I brushed twice. Fortunately my coworkers were in relatively the same state. I managed to sleep most of the trip back which helped. By the time I got home I finally felt better. Maybe I had finally recovered from my hangover. Maybe just being back home made me feel better. There’s no place like it, really. One trip down, two more to go.

June 12, 2007

Flying the Friendly Skies

Filed under: Interstellar Travel,It's Me, Lass — by InterstellarLass @ 6:47 pm

When I was a kid, I got to fly between Dallas and Houston to go see my grandparents for summer vacations. I know that the first time I flew by myself I was definitely under the age of 5. Shocking now to think that, but this was the late 70’s. I remember my grandfather dropping me at the airport and loading me on the plane. I had on my denim jumper, white tights, and red shoes. I vaguely remember a stuffed animal of some sort. Just before he left me on the plane, my grandfather took a pin from his pocket and put it on the lapel of my dress. It was a little train engine. The Little Engine That Could. I was a little afraid to be flying all alone. But my grandfather told me to just remember that “I think I can, I think I can, I think I can” and to not be afraid.

With the little train engine pin long gone, tomorrow I’ll be popping a couple of Xanax as I board my flight to Baltimore. Thunderstorms are forecast for both the takeoff and landing destinations. I don’t fly well anyway. Next week, I get to board my first commuter jet as I journey to Alabama. And then the following week, I get to see Cinncinnati for the first time in my life. Three plane trips in three weeks. Six of each; take-offs and landings. Hopefully all the TB patients have been contained this week.

June 7, 2007

Them’s the facts, Jack

Filed under: It's Me, Lass,Memes & Quizzes — by InterstellarLass @ 10:26 pm

1. I can teach myself to do just anything. I’m a very hands-on learner, and I can usually figure something out if I do it enough times. I taught myself to read music (treble clef that is, I learned bass clef in band), I taught myself to play the piano (not Rachmaninoff, but still, I could play with two hands), I taught myself to knit, and many other things. Depending on how interesting I find the activity, I will either decide to learn more, or I’ll live with knowing as little as I want.

2. I’m not very patient. I think this is because I’m so hands-on. I can’t stand to sit back and watch someone else do something. BUT, I try very very hard to hold myself back. Sometimes I’m more successful than others. I’m going to get more practice at this, because I think I’m going to teach Zed to cook. He’s learned laundry and dishes. Cooking is next on the ‘survival skills’ list.

3. I’m a Sagittarius. This description is pretty accurate of me.

4. I wear my heart on my sleeve and my emotions are very rarely hidden. This has gotten me in trouble many times. If you make me mad, you pretty much know it immediately. In the past people may have referred to my ‘glare of death’. I don’t know what they may have been talking about…

5. If I could sing, I would want to be a rock star. And not some skanky pop star like Britney or whatever. But like Gwen Stefani before she got all weird with the yodeling.

6. When I was 4, I tried to run away from home. My mom had promised to take me to the zoo, but was going to take a nap first. I decided not to wait. So I took her purse, got in the front seat, and emptied her purse to find the keys. Had it not been for the mailman that foiled my plans, I would have made it too. Headstrong? Nah.

7. I took ballet for 12 years. At my first recital, I decided to explore the stage. During the big kids production of ‘Hansel & Gretel’ I snuck onto the stage behind the oven prop. When the Witch opened the oven door, I yelled “Boo!” to her and then scurried back off the stage. I’m not mischevious either.

8. I eat my meals one food at a time. Meat, vegetable, vegetable. Salad has to be completed before I start on my entree, or else the salad doesn’t get finished. Same for any appetizer. So it really preturbs me when waiters rush my meal through. I’ve been known to send my entrees back because I wasn’t ready for them. Especially after I ask the waiter to delay putting the order in.

Golly that was hard. I’ve done a few of these type of memes and it gets harder and harder to find things to share. And now, 8 people to tag. How’s about… Carnealian, Silly Old Bear, Bone, Sparky Duck, Jolynn, Marie, TSM, & Laura. Don’t be shy now ya’ll.

June 5, 2007

Hey Kid, Happy Birthday, Once We Get Past the Hair

Filed under: Elle & Zed,Family & Friends,It's Me, Lass,Mom Life — by InterstellarLass @ 11:11 pm

So, since it’s the summer time, and since Zed’s birthday was just around the corner, and since he needed a haircut anyway, Nick and I decidd to have a little fun. “Hey. Want to shave your head into a mowhawk?” “Ummm…sure! Why not!”

So, Nick and Zed went into the bathroom and got hair all over the place. I had to go in and clean up, both the cut and the hair. And when we were done, I think it looked pretty cool. We went and got it professionally cleaned up a little more over the weekend.

Saturday night we went to dinner with my family for Zed’s birthday. I’m surprised there’s any oxygen left on the planet from the gasps my mom and grandmother sucked down. My sisters were a little more cool. After the first hundred ‘Oh my gods’ we finally got a ‘that’s cool looking’ from one of them. My grandfather just looked at him with disapproval and said “What a disgrace.” Nice gramps. Way to start off the night. No happy birthday? Isn’t that why we were there?

My grandfather sat outside the restaurant and stewed while the rest of us went inside to eat. There was palpable tension at the table through most of dinner. Nick went a little overboard in defense of my parenting capability and I’m not sure if he and my grandmother will speak for some time, if ever.

So forget the fact that he’s first chair clarinet, that he’s in honors math, that he got a ‘commended’ score on our state-standard test, that he has the sweetest heart of any kid his age that I know, that he looks after Pop and checks on him during the day to make sure there’s nothing he needs, that he’s progressively more responsible and is dismayed any time he thinks he disappoints people. Let’s throw all that out the window because of a haircut.

There he sat, at his birthday celebration, he was apologizing for causing trouble. I told him he did nothing wrong. Because he didn’t. And neither did I. My grandmother is convinced that we’ve opened ourselves to a world of trouble by allowing him to do this. Uh. He’s almost a teenager. That’s trouble right there isn’t it? And if I though he would be negatively influenced by this action, I wouldn’t have even considered it.

This is the way my family has always been. Never fearing to stick their noses in when they haven’t been asked. Never failing to have a comment or an opinion on my choices. Nick called it ‘child rearing by committee’. And they do all act as if they have a vote. And at times in my past I wasn’t capable of pushing back on them. Of putting my foot down and saying ‘no’. Of insisting that they respect my authority as a parent.

So, because I have yet made another bad decision and failed at my parenting duties, Zed will no doubt be featured on America’s Most Wanted within the next 10 years. I’m probably going to have to visit him over the Christmas holidays in juvenile detention. He’ll be convicted of selling drugs to babies. All because at age 12 I let him shave his head into a mowhawk. Silly me. Someone revoke my rights as a parent and save my children now from the inevitable damage that I have now done to them. I’m most angry over the fact that this was his birthday. And it was sullied by the negative reactions of my family that aren’t mature enough to keep their mouths shut.

But you know what? My baby boy turned 12. On Sunday he went to training to become a timekeeper at the basketball games, earning $5 per game. Then Nick continued to contribute to his deliquency by taking him to TwinPeaks (similar to Hooters but with lumberjack girls) for lunch. He declined the photo with the girls, but accepted the koozie signed by the staff. Last night I took him shopping with his gift cards and birthday money. We went to JCPenney, armed with a $40 gift card, a $10 coupon (good on an over $10 purchase), and his ‘savings’. He had a list of what he wanted. Shoes, shorts, shirt. The Target gift card would be saved for a Gameboy game. We searched the men’s shoe section. We found a pair of Adidas sneakers ON SALE. In a size 8. Is that normal? I was shocked. He checked out on his own, using his coupon and gift card. Then we wandered over to the boys section. I helped him locate sizes. He chose styles, and tried on for fit. Then checked out on his own. The cashier complimented him on his hair, asking (though totally bald) Zed if he thought he could do that style with his ‘hair’ too. “Hey, it’s America.” and the cashier laughed. Everything he bought was on sale, and with the coupon, he only spent $4.89 of his cash. Target was out of the Gameboy game Zed wanted, so he decided to save it rather than buying something he really didn’t want.

I’m so proud of Zed. I could brag on him all day. He is a wonderful, sweet, warm-hearted, kind, loving, smart, responsible (for a 12 year old), trustworthy, funny (funny!) kid. I could not have asked for a more perfect son. All you moms know that squeeze of your heart when you think about how much you love your kids. It’s both heart-wrenching and exciting watching them grow up. My time getting him ready for the world is already over half gone by, and the next few years are going to fly by I feel.

Happy Birthday Sweetie. I love you.

June 1, 2007

New Soccer Mom on the Block

Filed under: Elle & Zed,Mom Life — by InterstellarLass @ 9:52 am

Thusfar, our experience with soccer and Elle has been all rec and all for fun. Starting tomorrow, we enter the big leagues. Select Soccer. Elle had to go try out a couple of weeks ago, and after the practice the coach said he would be glad for her to join the team. “She’s good. She does need to work on fundamentals, but she’s good.” With just two practices with these coaches, I’m already seeing an improvement in her footwork and skills.

We’re starting with the shorter indoor season, and our game tomorrow is at 7:42 AM. That’s in the morning people. Early in the morning. We’re going to have to get up at 6 am on a Saturday. That in itself is just wrong. Tonight we have to go to Academy to get new shorts and socks in the appropriate color for the new team. Oh, and ponytail holders in the right color too. Can’t forget those.

I’m also going to be the ‘new mom on the block’. I won’t know any of the other mom’s on the team. One other girl from Elle’s team is playing, but she’s playing an age group down because of when her birthday is, despite the fact that she and Elle are in the same grade. I’m not good at talking to other moms. Especially not early in the morning. And especially not Soccer Moms. Our resume is rec league only, so I feel a little like the white trash soccer mom. But hopefully Elle will play well and ease my transition. No pressure kid.

Update: Well, she pulled through for me. Like it’s all about me. Her team was technically better than the opposing team and we won easily. They stopped counting goals after we scored 8, and I’m pretty sure we scored at least 8 more. Elle scored two goals in the first half! Way to go baby! There are several girls on the team that have excellent skills, and Elle has a lot to learn. She has the time, and I’ll find the money. We’re thinking World Cup one of these days. 😛 

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