Monday, May 25, 2015

12.25 Courage - The First Step

Bestest Friend and I are in the middle of a blog project. Each day of the month we will post a picture on a pre-determined theme and write a little something about it. The theme for the twenty-fifth day of each month is "Courage."
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Theirs was a solid Catholic family: mom, dad, two boys who were the oldest, and three little girls. Catholic grade school, Catholic colleges for all the kids.

But the cracks started to show.

The family arguments were legendary. The oldest brother would declare "you are dead to me" to one his siblings and the silent treatment would last for months.

The mother got sick. The youngest daughter left her job and her husband for months to be with her at the end. And then the arguments started. The youngest daughter fought her father about her mother's last wishes. She wanted more say in medical treatments. When the mother died, it was in a room where her husband and daughter were in the middle of a screaming match.

The father never spoke to his youngest daughter again and within six months, his own illness quickly taking him away from the family.  None of the other siblings will talk to the youngest daughter.

She calls me, crying. She is orphaned, her brothers and sisters won't talk to her, and while she loves her husband, he's gone a lot.  She's sad, she's lonely, she's afraid that her disrespect of her father will follow her into the afterlife.
She calls me, tells me that she has called her siblings. She has reached out, she has done her best, but they won't talk to her. She's crying.

There's nothing left to say.

She's very brave, I think.  And she feels very alone.

Someday I hope she finds a family to replace the one that has abandoned her. Family is not always shared DNA, but shared experiences and shared love.  I hope she finds peace. I hope she finds comfort from her husband, her friends, and her church. 
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To see what Bestest Friend wrote about the theme of the day, check out her blog, Too Legit to Quit.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

12.24 Pain - Thunderclouds

Bestest Friend and I are in the middle of a blog project. Each day of the month we will post a picture on a pre-determined theme and write a little something about it. The theme for the twenty-fourth day of each month is "Pain."
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Anniversary #7.

I force Dr. BB to pull out the tripod and take our photograph somewhere on our anniversary every year. Last year we actually just took a selfie together and I was grumpy about that for a long time, so when I woke up this morning, the first thing I did was remind him that we needed to take a picture.

And then we looked outside and noticed it was pouring rain.

Here's the deal. We don't have indoors activities that we do together. We hike, take walks, go for bike rides, and other assorted activities that take place outside. Where it was pouring rain.

I watched the radar like a hawk and when there was a tiny break in the green, I put on lip gloss, grabbed the camera and umbrella, and marched my husband out to the backyard to take this.
And as soon as we heard the shutter click on this, the sky opened and we were drenched by the time we got back inside.
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To see what Bestest Friend wrote about the theme of the day, check out her blog, Too Legit to Quit.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

12.23 Writing - Code

Bestest Friend and I are in the middle of a blog project. Each day of the month we will post a picture on a pre-determined theme and write a little something about it. The theme for the twenty-third day of each month is "Writing."
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One of the podcasts in my regular rotation is A Way with Words, a show about language, word usage and history, wordplay, and the general oddities of how we communicate.  I don't always agree with the hosts' philosophy on language because I'm much more of a stickler than they tend to be, but, in general, I love that they accept neologisms as part of an ever expanding and evolving language and that they are so excited by regional variations and dialects. It's not necessarily a podcast for everyone, but if you love words, idioms, and the impact of language on culture, it's totally fascinating.

Some of my favorite segments on the show include terminology used at the workplace.  Usually folks in fields like business, law enforcement, and education call in, but I want people in construction to call in more often.  I know they have interesting turns of phrases that they use and I want to know them.

For example, what is with all the codes that are written all over the sidewalks in our town?
I'll admit I still think C3PO when I walk by this one.
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To see what Bestest Friend wrote about the theme of the day, check out her blog, Too Legit To Quit.   

Friday, May 22, 2015

12.22 Seven Deadly Sins (Sloth) - Lazing

Bestest Friend and I are embarking on a new blog project. Each day of the month we will post a picture on a pre-determined theme and write a little something about it. The theme for the twenty-second day of each month is "Seven Deadly Sins."
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I dropped Dr. BB off at school because he had some annoying end of the year crap to do and then I walked over to the coffee shop where I was meeting a woman who was going to give me some extra work to do over the summer.  But I was about half an hour early for my meeting and instead of going for a walk or finding a park and doing lunges and squats or SOMETHING active, I sat on the steps by the lake and watched this goose family circle round and round and round the lake.

The parents seemed to distrust me, sending me squawks and hisses the first couple of times they passed my way, giving me a wide berth, and sending daggers my way with their best goose glares, but after a couple of laps, they just ignored me.
And that's all there is.  Dirty looks from geese and an exceptionally prolific algae bloom.  Let's get this weekend started.
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To see what Bestest Friend wrote about the theme of the day, check out her blog, Too Legit To Quit.    

Thursday, May 21, 2015

12.21 Laughter - The Great Machine v. Device Debate

Bestest Friend and I are in the middle of a blog project. Each day of the month we will post a picture on a pre-determined theme and write a little something about it. The theme for the twenty-first day of each month is "Laughter."
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It is Dr. BB's birthday today.

On present offer:
1) Two pairs of Besciani socks. There is no way I'm letting a chance to buy my husband striped socks go by without actually purchasing some.
2) A one pound assortment of See's Candies chocolates. They're all gluten free and since Dr. BB didn't want a cake or cookies for dessert tonight, at least he can have a truffle.
3) Truefitt & Hill Sandalwood shaving cream and an Omega Boar Bristle shaving brush
4) Pants

Man, I give some lame presents. I would like the first two things, I think. But the rest would make me sad. They came from his list, though, so he can't complain.
We're currently in the midst of A Great Debate all about words. We had finished the great debate about what to call the area of our building between the front door and our apartment door (foyer? vestibule? entryway?) and now we've moved on to quizzing one another about the difference between a device and a machine.

I think a device needs a source of power to work - battery, electricity, or whatever.  A machine, on the other hand, can run by itself.  Dr. BB has this weird thing about machine having moving parts, primarily mechanic, but a device has no moving parts. But then we get into very deep, philosophical discussions about cars (not a machine by my definition, but a device, but I would not feel weird or misunderstand if someone called it a machine) and watches (but the gears MOVE, I cry) and tools (there's a reason the word tool was created!).

And then we laugh at one another for the inaneness of our debates.
In the end everything is just a thingamajig, gadget, or whatsit. 
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To see what Bestest Friend wrote about the theme of the day, check out her blog, Too Legit To Quit.  

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

12.20 Lessons - Learn To Read A Calendar, Dumb Ass

Bestest Friend and I are in the middle of a blog project. Each day of the month we will post a picture on a pre-determined theme and write a little something about it. The theme for the twentieth day of each month is "Lessons."
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I'm waiting for a student to come and when she is ten minutes late, I log on and check the confirmation email that I sent her about this appointment only to realize that I am, actually, an hour EARLY. I made myself crazy to get here for a 4:30 appointment, only to find I had an entire OTHER hour I could have been doing things to make my life easier for tomorrow (my husband's birthday - he doesn't want to make a big deal of it, so a big deal won't be made, but a DEAL will be made, at least a little one).

I have been working on being kinder - kinder to others and kinder to myself.  But I hate it when I do shit like this. I have never been good with details. So I have developed systems to help me with this shit. The reason air filters get changed regularly in our house is because we put in on the calendar. The reason the groceries get purchased is because I have a notecard with every recipe we make and we look at those notecards Every. Single. Time. we make a list to go to the store, even if we've made the recipe one hundred times.  The reasons the ceiling fans get changed from counter-clockwise to clockwise is because we do it on the days we reset clocks for daylight savings.  SYSTEMS.

So when I ignore the systems, I get very upset with myself.
Next semester, I'm teaching a "New Student Seminar" and on the day we tackle time management issues, I'm just going to print off this blog post and walk away.  Don't let me talk to you about time management, kids, I'm an idiot*.

*It's this self-deprecation that I'm trying to change. Getting upset at myself is counterproductive, of course. I've learned my lesson and will not do this again in the immediate future. But, fuck it, I'm so annoyed with myself right now.  (Deep breaths. Deep breaths.)
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To see what Bestest Friend wrote about the theme of the day, check out her blog, Too Legit to Quit.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

12.19 My Best Friend - Be Aware of Snorting!

Bestest Friend and I are in the middle of a blog project. Each day of the month we will post a picture on a pre-determined theme and write a little something about it. The theme for the nineteenth day of each month is "My Best Friend."
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The area of my house that is always messy and I just can't control is the area around my desk in our home office. At one point, I valiantly tried to institute a clean desk policy for myself whenever I was leaving my desk, but I ended up just making piles on the floor so my desk top would technically be cleaned off, but that was not actually helping to organize things. 

Eventually I learned that the thing is that I want to be surrounded by personal things that make me happy when I'm working. At my school office, I really do force myself to clean my desk off at the end of the day, but I also have more space to spread out photos and notes and happy making figurines.

So I gave myself extra room by hanging up some ribbon right over desk and putting happy-making and reminder-making materials. Most of these things involve my friends and Bestest Friend, in particular, comes up a lot because she sends me lots of goofy things through the mail. Sometimes when I'm struggling with the work on my computer screen, I look at the "Be Aware of Snorting!" sign and just laugh and laugh and laugh.
It's also where I put things that cannot get lost. I'm going to a Lighthouse Cruise with my mom and sister in July (don't worry! - I promise to post pictures even if I'm not posting a picture every day) and I have the tickets posted there.

But when people come to visit, we make sure the door to this room is shut because it's never clean.  Bestest Friend would never have a place like that!
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To see what Bestest Friend wrote about the theme of the day, check out her blog, Too Legit to Quit.
 
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