24 November 2011


First and foremost, I was woken up this morning at about 6:00. I assumed it was work, but when I looked at my phone, I saw something I haven't seen for 7 months- Chris's name on the screen.
Safely back on US soil. Oh, thank you, thank you God.  He sounded good. Huge weight lifted off my shoulders.

(Pictures of their homecoming)- I couldn't find Chris in there, but I did borrow this one:

Can you think of a better way to get off the plane- greeted with a cold beer? I am so damn proud of him.

To continue the thankful trend...

Thankful for my amazing family. Not all families are like mine- and I am thankful for each and every one of them.

Friends- the family you get to choose. Again, I know some pretty damn wonderful people.

Thankful I have a job, even when it gets stressful. Thankful for the kickass coworkers that help me get through the tough days. Thankful for the regular paycheck and the roof over my head, the food in my fridge, the car in my driveway.

Too many things I take for granted on a daily basis. I am truly blessed.

23 November 2011


Just... wow.

I have literally postponed writing this, trying to find the words with which to capture the sheer awesomeness. But... I just can't. Also, I've been waiting for some pictures.

I have to say, yet again, that I am incredibly lucky to know such amazing people.

Let me explain the reasons for all of this gushing-ness.

I've always wanted one, and have jokingly talked about who is going to throw me one for years, but this weekend I got a surprise birthday party!!

I love surprises, but it is very hard to surprise me. Once I find out something's going on, I can't stand it. I have to know what's going on. Especially if it's behind my back. I can usually read people and tell that they're hiding something. Or I over-analyze and think they're on to something when they're not. ... Or ARE they?? I am very impressed that they managed to surprise my paranoid, sneaky self.

But they did it, oh, so freaking good. I was shocked. Stunned. Never in a million years would I have guessed that I was walking into a surprise party. My friends are goood.

They planned for months, thought of every last detail, and panicked because they thought I had caught on. They had plan B, plan D, plan F to make sure I got there. They had secret meetings and mass emails. They almost accidentally talked about it in front of me several times. And they freaking pulled it off!!

I never had a clue!

The entire party was gluten free- sandwiches from Jason's deli, cheese balls, fruit trays, organic wine, some amazing spicy mac & cheese (Jen, I need that recipe!), brownies, I mean everything. Akhtar even baked a gluten free cake that was better than the last one. I should have grabbed a piece to take home!

There were pink and polka dot streamers and balloons

 A banner that everyone signed

Party hats, an owl pinata filled with little bottles of liquor (GENIUS!)

 A jumbo-sized Jenga game, a little booty-shakin', and a really good time.

And, AND, they all pitched in to buy me...

a new tv.
A freaking TV!
OMG THEY GOT ME A TV. A really good one.

Not to say that my old tv wasn't super awesome...

 but this is clearly a vastly superior tv.

The party was amazing, but by far I'm most touched by the amount of thought and effort everyone put into it.

I just...  no words. These people are amazing. (Plus Akhtar, who isn't pictured because he took all the pictures!)

And to be a good sport, here's a video of the surprise:

22 November 2011

20 fo sho

Happy birthday Suzy Bear!! You are an amazing person and you are so loved.

 (diggin how they're creeping in the background lol)

19 November 2011


Yesterday I did a little shopping and came home with this dress. And I paid 50 bucks for it.

I didn't go shopping for a dress. I tried it on on a whim. I generally don't even try on clothing that is mainly polyester- I like my fabric to breathe. But, I figured what the heck.

And it looked awesome on me. So it came home, non-breathable fabric and all.

Now I need somewhere to wear it. I don't want it to be one of those dresses that looks amazing and sits in my closet for 3 years before I ever wear it.

18 November 2011

dream weaver

I'm tired of having dreams about work.

I fell asleep wrapped up in an extremely cozy cocoon with my feather comforter and the cat.

Then I had horribly stressful dreams. I dreamed that we took on a ton of new homes and we had phlebotomist after phlebotomist coming in the lab to drop off rack after rack of blood. They were literally crowding around the centrifuge and piling their racks of tubes on top of each other all around the lab, wherever they can find the space. I can quickly see that there's no way that we will get all of it done in a day's time. Visions of overtime and working terribly long shifts and exhaustion dance in front of my eyes.

And the whole time they're untrained, and asking me questions and loading the centrifuge wrong so it's making a bunch of noise and wobbling all over the place. So I grab the phlebotomy manager, who in real life is kind of a smartass but overall a nice guy, and ask him to help me out with training the phlebotomists. And he just looks at me and tells me to deal with it and walks out.

Then the cat woke me up and forced me from my cocoon to be let outside. Man, I can't wait for a cat door.

But seriously, I deal with enough stress at work. Why does it have to invade my dreams?

17 November 2011


My dad can't stand it when my sisters or I wear pajama pants in public. I always figured it's because it looks sloppy, but recently he told me it's because, "boys can look at your butt."

Supposedly they can't do that when I wear regular pants?
And I'm sure boys aren't craning their necks to get a look at my fanny- pajama pants or not.

Funny how dads think.

16 November 2011

flashing lights

I have no clean spoons.

This will be a problem tomorrow morning when it gets to be cereal-eating time.

I was all set to do the dishes, when I happened to glance over here at Lappy and remembered I have a story. So dishes will wait, or possibly get postponed until tomorrow morning when I wash a single spoon for cereal-eating purposes. Or I'll use a plastic spoon. *shrug*

This morning I got pulled over.
That's right, at 4-o'freaking-clock in the morning.

I was turning out of my neighborhood, and I saw the cop sitting there at the intersection, one of those killer whales. I see them on this particular stretch of road a lot, especially early in the morning.

So I made sure to come to a complete stop before I turned right on red. I always glance in the rear view mirror when I pass a cop, and I saw him start driving. Fuck.
Still driving, looking in the rear view mirror, he got up right behind me. Fuck.
Lights come on. Fuck, man.
Racking my brain, I realize I did not use my blinker when I made the turn. Do people really get pulled over for that? Maybe I had a headlight out.

So I pulled into a parking lot and he comes to the window. I roll it down.
BAM flashlight all up in my face. I squint, "Good morning."

"I'm officer so-and-so. License and proof of financial responsibility, please."

As I reach for my wallet he asks where I work. I tell him, and he asks where that is. I tell him that, too. Making conversation? Or making sure I'm not a secret druggie/ serial killer/ arms dealer/ rapist disguised in a cute hair bow and scrubs and a pink sweater?

I hand him my license as he asks me if I know why I was pulled over. I tell him, "No I'm not sure why," as I start to reach towards the glovebox for my insurance card. Silently hoping that I remembered to throw the current one in there.

He tells me, "You didn't use your blinker when you turned," Blast. He keeps going, "and you turned into the left-hand lane."

Derr, what? I vaguely remember some obscure page in the driver's ed handbook that mentioned that rule about having to turn into the right-hand lane when making a right on red. Oops. I made a kind of exasperated, "I'm such a tard" noise like I knew about that rule all along and I can't believe I broke it, as I dug through my glove box... and finally pulled out the insurance card.

He doesn't even take it. He hands me back my license, says something I didn't really catch, and gets back in his car before I have a chance to say thank you in the direction of my open window.

Hm, okay. Must have had something much more important to do. My dad would say there was probably a sale on squishies at the Valero. He probably got radioed about something? Maybe a robbery or something exciting.

But, I was annoyed that I was pulled over at 4am when there's no one on the road to be a hazard to. He was just waiting there for someone to screw up. Like forgetting to use a blinker. I'm so damn dangerous. (In hindsight, how could I forget to use my blinker?? There was a cop RIGHT THERE! Geez.)

And also, don't waste either of our time if you're not going to ticket me, or give me a warning, or whatever. Not that I wanted a ticket, but why did he even bother?
Maybe I was going to get a ticket and I just got lucky. I wonder how much a ticket for that would cost?

Maybe he was just bored and curious about what type of person is driving around at 4am, not using their blinkers and turning into left-hand lanes.

In that case, I probably deserved it.

14 November 2011

the real reason for VS 5/$25

Dear not-really-my-period-but-light-spotting-signalling-my-period-will-soon-start,

Thank you for ruining a really cute pair of underwear.


I know you all feel me on this one. (Well, the girls anyway)

[and actually it's 7/$26 right now...]

13 November 2011

Braided Tshirt Scarf Tutorial

This weekend we made two different kinds of scarves from tshirts. The first is a Ruffly one. 

This is the second kind of scarf we made- using this pin as inspiration. There was no tutorial to be found, so we kind of made one up.

Braided Tshirt Scarf:

Lay your tshirt out and start cutting through both layers of fabric. Make the strips fairly thin- about an inch or so. You will end up with loops of fabric.

Once you have the loops (we ended up with 12), start stretching them. I had no idea they could stretch so much! We had some fun with that, haha.

 fun with stretching!

After they're stretched, cut through each loop- turning your loops into long strings.

Set aside 2 strings.

Have your friend hold one end of the remaining strings while the other braids, or anchor it under a piece of furniture. Separate strings into 3 equal-ish ections and braid about halfway down.

Take one of the strings that were set aside and tie it tightly with a double knot at the end of the braid. Wrap the rest of the string around tightly and double knot it. Trim and tuck in the ends.

The next part is a little tricky. We found it easier to sew all the strings together at the two ends, then sew the ends together.

Meaning:: we sewed all the strings at the top of the braid together, then we sewed all the ends of the loose strings together. I neglected to get a picture... hopefully it's not too confusing.

I sewed them on the machine, but hand-sewing would work too.

After we got all the crazy strings into more manageable bunches, we connected the two ends of the scarf. There will be a lot of bulk, but do your best. Trim as much extra string as possible.

It will end up something like this (again, with super awesome paint effects):

Take the other piece of string that was set aside and wrap it around the ugly sewn-together part so that it looks similar to the one securing the braid.

Finished product:

Not bad, eh?

Ruffled Tshirt Scarf Tutorial

It was a crafty weekend over here.

One of the projects we tackled was the making of scarves... from old tshirts!

We made two different kinds. 1. Ruffly and 2. Braided.

First, the ruffly one. Complete with super awesome paint effects that hopefully make it clearer.

Ruffly Tshirt Scarf:

Take your old tshirt and lay it out flat.

Cut off the bottom hem.

Cut straight up one of the sides, about 3 or 4 inches.
Then start cutting a strip across on the top layer only- not through both layers.

When you're cutting, cut at a slight upward angle instead of straight across. You're going to be cutting in a spiral up the tshirt- ending up with one big long strip. When you get to a side, just flip it over and continue cutting, maintaining a fairly constant thickness.

Once you've cut all the way up to the sleeves, there will be a part of the big long strip that was originally the bottom of your tshirt. Cut off the wonky part where you started the spiral so that you have a smooth edge.

You will end up with a long piece of fabric- and you want it as long as possible. Also, don't worry if your strip is not the same thickness all the way down- once you make the ruffles, you won't even be able to tell.

Next is the fun part. Make the ruffle by setting the sewing machine tension at its highest setting, and choose the longest stitch. Just feed the fabric through and sew right down the middle- and it will make a ruffle- no fancy feet needed. Also, don't backstitch.
We found that the combination of highest tension/ longest stitch created a ruffle that was too tight- so we pulled out the threads and tried it again at a slightly lower tension.

 very intense work, this ruffle-making is

Once you've got a ruffle that you like, set the tension and stitch length back to normal and sew back over your middle line, this time making sure to backstitch.


*While the ruffles are pretty stable at this point, they are still move-able if you tug.
To get a ruffle that will definitely stay put, you need to stabilize it with a piece of plain fabric down the middle, or make your ruffles using elastic. But that was too much fuss for our interests.

So there you have it; a ruffled scarf using an old tshirt.

12 November 2011


I made something I pinned on Pinterest!

A lot of wonky sewing (that darn bias tape is tricky) and a little bit of blood (rogue pin), and now I have a "mug rug."

I eat at my computer a lot, and the spot in front of my laptop always gets a little grody. I'm also a little lazy at cleaning it regularly, so I definitely need a "cereal bowl rug." Overall, I'm happy with the result.

11 November 2011


A few months ago my parents were drunk at a party watching a football game. At one point, my dad said to one of the children there, who was about 6 or 7, "If you go bet my wife that her team is going to lose, you could probably get a bike out of her."

At this point my mom was in her "Give away money and make bets" stage of drunken-ness, and her team was very far behind towards the end of the game. So the kid runs up to her, "Miss Roberta! I bet you a bike that your team is going to lose!" And, of course, my mother insisted that her team would win and the bet was on.

When her team ended up losing, this little kid was beside himself excited. Jumping up and down, "I get a bike! I get a bike!"

My mom didn't have time to hold up her end of the deal before they had to leave (they were several hours from home visiting friends and had to get back home for work), but promised the boy that she would get him a bike the next time they visited.

This past week they ended up back in town, and called up the boy's dad- who was a friend of a friend. He said that he'd been talking about that bike ever since he had won the bet. Can you imagine the torturous suspense?? A little background on this family: 3 little boys, one of whom belongs to the wife's niece who couldn't take care of him so they took him in. So money's a little tight.

Anyway, they took the boy and his two brothers to Walmart to buy them all bikes. The other boys didn't want bikes, and instead wanted toys like a remote control car and lego sets. But the original boy ran to the bikes and picked one out, in the super excited way that only a little boy picking out a bike could be.

My parents were just about as giddy as the kids- they were all glowing with huge smiles as they walked out of the store with their new toys.

10 November 2011


Been experiencing a little bit of discomfort lately, so today I ran my own urinalysis.

For Suzy:

Anyway, I was surprised to get a ketone result of 15 mg/dL.

And I really don't see a good reason for it.
I mean, I've recently taken up jogging, but it's definitely not prolonged or excessive.

Garr, something new to worry about. At least until my pee gets back to normal ;o)

09 November 2011

go baby

Today I ran for 5 minutes.
Add an extra 30 seconds each time I run?
I think that's reasonable.

07 November 2011


Today I was able to jog the entire length of a Britney Spears song; about 4 and a half minutes. I used the "dead fish" breathing technique, breathing in and out of both my mouth and nose at the same time. I found it much easier.

Go me! My 5 minute goal is totally reachable.

I also feel considerably more peppy than I did before exercising. You know, the whole,"endorphins make you happy" thing.

Also wondering if my iron is low again, and maybe that's why I've been so sluggish lately.
Time to get some more multivitamins.

06 November 2011

I want

I want my man back. Right here- not on the other side of the world surrounded by crazy people and explosives. I'm so freaking over this crap.

I don't want to go to work tomorrow.

I want a nice long soak in a bathtub. This would be nice.

I want some energy.
I want to go to bed right now and get a really good night's sleep.

Felt so blah today. Work was really slow. I anticipated that, and I tried to watch a movie on my laptop but the dvd wouldn't play after 30 minutes. So I spent most of the day bored off my ass, looking out the window at the dreary day. Which is probably why I'm in such a funk.

05 November 2011

like cheddar

Ohhh. My feet hurt. I feel like I've aged about 10 years in a few days.
Today actually wasn't as terrible as I envisioned... but I'm just freakin' beat.

I purposely took care of all the weekly maintenance today so that tomorrow (if I don't get calls for pickups every 30 minutes like today), I can chill for a while. Also, I need new shoes.

Whenever I dread this, I'm just going to focus on how worth it it will be when I get to take time off when he's home. After so long, this last month is going to be brutal.

04 November 2011

Here we go again...

Dreading work tomorrow. Hopefully this bullshit ends up ok, like all of the other bullshit that I've bitched about that ends up being ok.
It's just the between-now-and-when-the-bullshit-gets-better that sucks.
I have a feeling I'm going to be very bitchy tomorrow.

I miss the days when I enjoyed my job-- and the people I work with.

Back when I liked my job, I came home content, like I spent my day doing something good with my life.
When I come home after a sucky day at work- to nothing substantial, I feel like I need something else. I don't feel fulfilled.

I feel like my whole day is spent trying not to bite some idiot's head off.

I need a happy place that I can focus on when I'm trying not to get annoyed at certain people that I'm forced to be in close proximity with. 

Isn't it awful that a single person can change your whole outlook?

03 November 2011

run, jenny, run

Last night I accidentally inhaled some toothpaste while brushing my teeth and I thought I was going to die right there, crouched over my sink. From choking on toothpaste.

Today was GORGEOUS.

Been trying to get some sort of physical activity in every day or every other day, which is usually a brisk walk. Even though I'm constantly moving at work, it helps to clear my head, get my blood flowing in a non-stressful way, and helps me sleep better at night. Also, I've noticed I'm less puffy and I haven't experienced any weight fluctuations like I do every few months.

I'm getting rather bored with my walking routine. I get bored with all my workout routines, really. So I decided to try running. No particular goal, just want to do something different.

I need to start bringing a timer when I attempt to run. Because it's all up to perspective as far as how far/ how long I run. It might feel like a long time, when in reality it was more like a minute. I need some point of reference, especially if I want to improve. Striving for an extra 20 seconds every day might make me less bored.

I've discovered that

1. I can run for longer than I thought; when I feel like stopping, I just don't. And then I keep going and *surprise* I don't die. And when I say 'for longer than I thought,' I mean a total of a couple of minutes, tops. The idea of running for 5 minutes straight is still not doable. You gotta start somewhere.

2. I need to learn how to breathe correctly when running. Will probably help with the longevity issue.

01 November 2011


Apparently I am now a "seenster."

Akhtar and I made the Houston Chronicle's photo gallery from the Spirits & Skeletons thing.
Now maybe when you google my name, something will come up that's actually about me instead of the pervert schoolteacher.