Monday, August 31, 2009


Dustin here.

A little follow-up to that last post. I didn't run away from home. I was just playing racquetball with our pal Robert Klick; I'd told Neesh about the plan, but forgot to tell her when, and apparently she didn't notice when I kissed her goodbye and slipped out that morning. That was totally my bad. Next time, I'll leave a note. Sorry for panicking everyone (especially you, Neesh)!

We're at It's a Grind cafe now. Neesh is writing and reading for comps. I'm writing a poem that I hope will make it into tomorrow's update at Fun fact: Poetry was like, my specialty while I was in grad school at Southeast; since there was no nonfiction writing program there, it was all poetry and fiction workshops, all the time. So I know my way around a rondeau, but up in these here parts -- especially with only two allotted public readings in five years -- there's really no occasion for one such as me to put that out there. Besides, the poets here got that mess staked out hardcore like the Neil Armstrong's U.S. flag on the moon. They're all, like, yoink. 

But that's okay, because Neesh and I got somethin' in the pipe for the creative types in these parts whose voices maybe aren't getting heard so much. More on that as it develops. I'm stoked about it, though. I can tell you that much. 

Back to the matter at hand before they close and kick us out of here. Peace out until next time, loyal reader.


Thursday, August 27, 2009

Two Strange Occurrences at Piranha Court

The full first week of school is not yet under our belts (D teaches MWF so he still has tomorrow, and I teach today) and all kinds of strange things are happening. One-a student of mine missed the first day of class (he was the ONLY one to miss it). The class is for students majoring/minoring in English. He then wrote me an email claiming "scheduling conflicts." Out of curiosity, I facebook him (is "facebook" a legal verb yet?) and find out that his status claims he not ONLY missed class, but he missed the WINERY!!!, too. I planned to say nothing about it and just kindly point toward the attendance policy in my syllabus so he had an idea. D thought I should call him out. What can I say? I cave under peer pressure exerted by my husband, so I casually advised him, at the end of the informative email, to alter his facebook page to a more private state so his claims of having "scheduling conflicts" could be more believable. Followed by a "see you in class tomorrow!" I'm still not sure whether I actually WILL see him in class today.

When I woke up this morning, my husband was gone. Seriously. He still is, as a matter of fact. All of his things are here, though, and so are his running shoes so I have crossed "running" and "leaving me" off of the list. However, he's not in the house. I once woke up to find him gone and decided he must've gone out for something, but found he was really closed into another room whose door we usually keep shut. I checked those doors, though. And this time, he's really gone. I have faith he'll be back, even though he's not answer his phone. But where could he have been at 8am? Weird.

More to come on the first week of school sometime after I find my husband.


Friday, August 21, 2009

The Demands of the Kitchen and Other Tales

When did I get so boring?

I have been toying with the Great Removal, as in, the Great Removal of my Myspace Page as I don't ever use it and it is kind of pointless to have that space on the internet devoted to me when I'm not devoted to it. However, it is home to my previous blogging. A blog that tells the story of a girl who came before me: confused, uncertain, depressed, seeking and falling frequently. It takes place in a mind that roams, is sometimes witty and, mostly, quite odd. I'm no longer that person, of which I'm glad, but I do appreciate some of her writing as it's really kind of quirky, engaging, and, at times, enlightening. So I made this attempt to copy/paste it all into a blog on here, but it's over 1mb (or something like that). Then I tried to save it in a document on my computer, but Word physically and flat-out refused to do it. As a last attempt, I emailed it to myself, but I'm not convinced it will ever see the light of day again if I keep it in my old email account. What to do with a past self? A blog that reveals a journey to the now? I don't know. Do you have any other ideas?

Other than reading books (they're for my exam, Kelly!) by the score, I have been drinking coffee like it keeps my heart pumping. D, God bless him, must find me even more boring than I find myself. Last night he tore out of the house to go see a movie that he KNEW was going to be bad, though I tell myself it was the company of his friends he was really interested in, not in parting ways from the Book-Eater that he's apparently married.

However, this alternate universe I'm living in has its own interesting moments. For example, the other day I looked across the room at Dustin sitting over in the kitchen. He was reading intently and, from where I sat, it looked as though he and his giant brick-colored coffee cup were floating. For a good hour, every time I glanced in his direction, the coffee cup appeared to be hovering near him, waiting for him to grab hold of it's handle and sip.

A spider crawled up to me while I was reading the other day and I would bet money it was the exact same spider I saw earlier in the week. On the first occasion, it was near Dustin who, I think, doesn't love spiders. Mostly the spider was yellow with a distinct black stripe on him. Not huge, but fuzzy-looking. I didn't get a chance to tell D about it before the spider scurried off and then reappeared, days later, beside me on the couch. For a minute, it was like me might saddle up and ask me how Mary Rowlandson's "Captivity" was going, but when I returned his attention, he took off in the other direction. I knew this wouldn't do either of us any good...all this running amok on the couch business, so I scooped him up using an envelop as a shovel. He ended up folded inside of the envelope and I set him free out on the patio, much do the dogs' dismay.

Lastly, all this reading has forced me to confront the issue of the paint on the walls of our home. The color is a greenish, but was supposed to be a yellowish, a mistake I've lamented since the day I moved in. I have never stopped wanting it to be yellow and so for the last four years, I've tried to ignore the proud green walls that stare me down from every direction and room. Once, I though I'd paint the study a deep burnt orangey-red. I haven't given up the idea, just haven't gotten around to it. But the kitchen is beginning to get awfully pushy about me painting it yellow. Do you know what that's like? First, the kitchen demanded a pot-holder that would dangle from the ceiling over the sink and breakfast. It kind of insists that the holder will bring a new artistic feel to the room. It has a point. Then, when I began to look around for such a piece, it began hinting at wanting a new color. Mostly this began last Sunday when Dustin, my most wonderful, thoughtful husband, brought me home a shock of yellow roses. I adore them and put them on the breakfast bar in the kitchen so I can see them from where I study. The kitchen has really become quite taken with them itself and now thinks it's THE color. I got some swatches when we bought a can crusher the other day. We, (Dustin and I) are discussing. The dogs don't like it as their hair will lay claim to the wet paint and we know it, but we're still turning the idea on its head to see if it takes or not. Mostly, we're just waiting to see if the kitchen backs off or stands its ground on the color change. You know how kitchens are.

This is what you get when you put a writer in a house and force her to read for weeks on end. Thankfully school starts next week and I'll finally be able to leave the house for a reason!

Otherwise, more to come.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Getting Back

What a glorious day today turned out to be! I finished one book, started and finished the next and am now on my third book. D and I got a run in, then we met up with a new nonfiction student and his wife, who we did not get to meet previously. We met them for a late dinner (mostly my fault for running into the dark, but more on that later) at Addison's where Nick and Cecelia ordered the ever-tasty Mediterranean salad and some wraps; I stuck with the scrumptious rare-Ahi tuna with a side of the still undefeated-best-vegetable-ever-created: Broccoli and D had these tasty Nachos Bianco!-------------->

We chatted about their move and D's great, secret idea (which I will reveal in an alternate blog at an undesignated date that will, hopefully, be in the near future) while nibbling on the most tasty foods we could think of (I was starving after our run so I might be a bit biased). The company was splendid and the conversation just as satisfying. We were also pleasantly surprised to learn that Nick and Cecelia live just around the corner from us, basically, which is awesome. Almost no one from school lives near us (and if they do, we don't know it). We're not the kind of people to go knocking on the doors of our friends and just barging in, but it's nice to know that if they need us or just want to swing by our place, we're close enough for it to happen. It's especially nice if there's an emergency. Nick and I might carpool to school since he couldn't get a parking pass (they're tough to come by)...and we have a similar philosophy (all of us) on wanting to be at school, do what we need to do, then peace out and get back home to our lives, dogs, home...etc. When we parted ways at the end of the night, we couldn't help but remark about what "good" people they are and, it's unfortunate, but not often that I find myself saying someone is inherently "good" and "genuine" like these two are. What a nice, needed addition to the program.

Fast forward to before we met up with these two lovelies, though. Today my "half marathon training schedule" said I needed to run 4.5 miles, which I wasn't compelled to run in the state of fatigue I found myself in come "cooling hour" (around 7). However, I am a woman of my word and I pulled on my running gear and, accompanied by the huzbah, went to the Katy Trail. We agreed that I would run about five miles and D would run whatever he felt comfortable with...whoever made it back first would wait for the other. Cool.

It was 7:30 when I took to the trail, my feet crushing rocks and dirt beneath me as I found my pace and began pushing my distance further up: Maybe I'll just run a little over five m
iles, instead. I'll see how I's not out of the question. A girl with purple shorts and a heavy white t-shirt and her running partner, in purple shoes and purple shorts, pulled ahead of me on my left. A man with no t-shirt and black shorts swooped past us all "Nice work, ladies. Keep on going," he called out to us. "Great job, buddy. Nice stride," he waved to a middle-aged man running toward us...and he continued to call out encouragement to each runner he passed as he went. The girls chatted idly and picked up there pace; I started to follow there lead and then some, gaining on them as we reached the half-mile marker. Woah, woah! You'll never get six miles in if you run at this pace, I chided myself and begrudgingly slowed down. I am competitive by nature and swallowed my pride as the purple-clad girls pulled to a comfortable distance ahead of me.  (Photo is of the Katy Trail during daylight.)

I followed them for two miles, passing children on bikes sandwiched between their parents, also on bikes, a man and his dog and granddaughter, two women and their dog, runners, walkers, bikers, roamers...we passed old people, young ones, women pushing strollers, people walking dogs both big ones and tiny ones through shaded portions of the trail and the overcast-sunny ones until the girls broke off at the rest place and walked clear off the trail. I continued forward, glad I didn't keep up with their stride, through a tunnel, under the road, into the forest beyond city limits.

It was still light out when I hit 3.15 miles and turned to make my way back. Still light out as I ran the un-shaded mile with nothing but fields on either side of me and heard "moo-ing," but saw no cows. It turned dark as soon as I hit 4.2 miles and not just dark, but black. The trail went dry and empty without a soul in sight or sound but my feet hitting the ground, the occasional hoot in the dark or flicker of dull light where the trees parted overhead. I thought of Dustin and why I hadn't run into him yet. He told me he thought he'd run five miles. He should be out here somewhere. Unless something happened to him. The band on my arm that keeps base withe the satellites that track my mileage blinked green like a firefly in the dark; I ran through a spiderweb that stuck to my face like hair on my wet skin. 

The silence turned on me and something rustled in the forestry surrounding me, the trail turned to wood as I passed over a bridge that I thought I'd already crossed. A man on a bike nearly hit me, though we saw each by the light of the rising moon and had plenty of space between us. I worried he might turn around and come at me on his bike from behind. I couldn't possibly outrun a bike if he attacked. I'd be no match. Still no Dustin, only darkness. In the distance, I spotted a vague white glint ahead, fast approaching that disappeared as I passed through a particularly thick area. I didn't see it again until it was an inch from me: another woman, running alone in the dark. Or was it? Images appeared then disappeared, something flew past my head; I heard a whooping from above. Am I not alone, after all?

At the end of the trail, where I began, the lights glowed yellow a mile away like a beacon guiding me back and the fear rising inside of me boiled so furiously my pace only increased. I forgot I had water to drink or feet that had run nearly six miles. I worried Dustin might be worried or looking for me or, worse yet, hurt...and that light still a mile away. I pressed on, fighting the relentless spiderweb off my face, hearing animals in the wood around me, shifting leaves and crunching gravel.

As the gap between me and the end closed in, a flashlight went on in the distance: fluorescent and bright. Then off. Did I see that at all? Is my mind playing tricks now? Then on again, consistent and stable. I knew it was him searching for me in the distance and ran faster. The last two minutes were easy; the fright subsided and I ran to the light: "Neesh?" I grabbed onto him and hugged. "I knew it was you." My heart beat hard in my chest from being so scared. "How did you know?" he asked, guiding me back to the car. "Because you always come for me. You're always there waiting and making sure I find my way safely back to you."

I will be running earlier from now on. The mind has a way of playing the most frightening tricks on you at the worst possible times...or does it? Whatever the case, I don't want to find out next time.

Thank God for Dustin.

Sweet dreams, all.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

The Blog I Didn't Write Last Night

I started a post last night whilst awaiting some Berry Bread I concocted (successful creation, I might add) to finish baking in the "Can't-Screw-Up-The-Yeast-This-Time" bread machine (that's its FULL name). However, it turned into what could be a really crappy essay filled with lots of information that isn't terribly interesting. In short, I wrote about Wolverine from the X-Men. Forgive me! The blog-writing came on the cusp of the final credits of the movie Hulk and my awaiting the final BEEP of the bread machine. So instead of that blog, filled with tangents and stories that take too long, I give you this new one that I will write just for this occasion.

A few weeks ago, D entered an essay contest (and we just found out he came in THIRD! Way to go, huzbah!) and kept urging me to enter, as well. I was reading some book or another on my comps list and told him I just couldn't do it. Plus, I had no inspiration. It's been a while, actually, since I've felt like I could put down a book and write without losing myself to it, causing me to reject completing the book. No bueno, amigos. But he did push topics at me and, eventually, tackled me into a conversation on Wolverine. We had recently seen the Origins of Wolverine movie and Dustin began advocating Cyclops while we sat, computer before him, book in my hands, in Panera Bread on Hilton Head Island.

"Cyclops is pretty great, too. He got the girl," Dustin remarked, mentally likening himself to the character. "He's a good guy: reliable, powerful, important, smart. He could totally kill Wolverine with his power if he wanted to. AND, he got the girl."
"He has no edge. No...spark. Wolverine is just mysterious and rebellious and he only has eyes for Jean Grey. He's sexy and funny and untamable. Cyclops is the right choice. The smart choice, the guy Jean should be with, but women are always attracted to the Wolverine's in the pack."

We continued to discuss the fact that Cyclops felt intimidated by Wolverine. In the first movie, he tells Wolverine to 'stay away from my girl,' moments after saying that IF he had to tell Wolverine that, then Jean was clearly NOT his girl. Obvious unsettlement on the part of Cyclops. Obviously he's threatened, and who wouldn't be? It's Hugh-Sexiest-Man-Alive-2008-Jackman!

I've had my students watch and write papers on this film. Mainly, they've discussed LGBT Rights, Civil Rights, the Holocaust...etc. But one of my students wrote a paper on Jean Grey's plight of having to choose between the "good guy" and the "bad boy." We spent quite some time discussing how girls always go for the ass holes who treat them like shit and always overlook the wonderful, stable men who adore them. In the end, the paper was just ok, but the points we discussed or that I found my thoughts wandering to when faced with the dilemma of Dr. Grey's choice were accurate.

As a normal woman, Jean was clearly drawn to the unequivocal sexual energy radiating off of Wolverine and immensely attracted to his passionate desire for her and her alone. He was smart, funny, strong, independent, devoted, sexy and capable. But he was also temperamental, unpredictable, at times, frightening, prone to fits of rage and short, completely unpredictable and unreliable. Whereas Cyclops is also attractive in a subdued kind of way when compared to Wolverine (the guy wears turtlenecks and, let's face it, not all men should be wearing turtlenecks...especially if they're trying to appear more masculine than the leather-jacket clad, motorcycle-stealing, on the hunt, steel razor-clawed Wolverine), smart, reliable, loyal, adoring, trusting, responsible, kind, caring, thoughtful...etc. Need I go on? So, why the hang-up, Jean? Why the obvious feelings of hesitancy when Wolverine is around?

The answer is simple: something in us wants to rescue that lone Wolverine, pull him in and tame him just enough to keep him "ours." We don't want him to lose his mystery or passion, we just want him to keep it reserved for us. 

The problem is, once Wolverine is ours, or, hers, that is...she wouldn't want him anymore because he wouldn't be what she loved after all. He couldn't be rebellious and independent, temperamental and unpredictable yet loyal and stable, cautious and reliable. In the end, what women really want and what it takes some of us 28 years to figure out, is the calm, certain version of Wolverine: Cyclops.

I lowered my book to look at Dustin plugging away at his computer across from me, glasses clutching to the bridge of his nose, hair tousled from his hands running through it in concentration, tanned face and glowing green eyes and said: "In the end, no one really wants Wolverine because no girl would ever be happy with the kind of life that would mean for her. He would never change or become reliable. And if he did, he wouldn't be the person we fell in love with and the whole relationship would be a great big sham. At the end of the day, once we figure out what's good and true in life, we're all going to go for the guy with the glasses who will love us forever and never make us wonder where he is or if he's coming back. It's why I married you, honey."

I think he was excited that I, too, had likened him to Cyclops. He's right, after all, he's a pretty awesome character, too!

On an unrelated side note, Bogey is doing much better today (thanks for all the well-wishes). I ran 6.2 miles yesterday, which brought my week to about 20 miles. I'm still aiming to do the Roots and Blues BBQ Half Marathon on the last weekend of September so I'll have to get my mileage up, but I am proud to say I ran the 5k distance in 23 minutes...a new PR! And the huzbah did 5 miles, too! Welcome back, D! By the time school starts, I want to be up and finished with my run by 7am...just one week left...ugh.


Saturday, August 15, 2009

The Metaphorical Sun'll Come Out Tomorrow?

It's been a rough day in these parts! I woke up with a renewed sense of plugging away toward my comprehensive exams this semester, thinking I'd get a whole lot of stuff done before the husband arose (it was, after all, only 6am), but I was slightly irritated that I hadn't slept well. I'd gotten up at 3am for some unknown reason and the next three hours were filled with a sleep so frail, one of the dogs just breathing deeply woke me. Every sound, every change in the atmosphere and I was up all over again. Needless to say, I had very little sleep from 3am onward.

Once 6am hit, I gave up and I did so fairly optimistically thinking the early morning gave me lots of time to read, visit the bright yellow sunflowers in our garden, have some coffee from a giant red mug and relax. Unfortunately, the Fates had other plans.

No sooner did I brush my teeth than Bogey, the small, white, oldest dog, began vomiting with a vengeance. Poor boy threw up all over the rug (of course...he is too good for the tile, which you'll later learn more about). I quickly scooted him out the patio door and proceeded to clean it up. If you're a dog owner, you know that these things occasionally happen. After I made coffee and got the dog's breakfast ready, I let Bogey back in and fed the two pups. Then I take the bigger, younger dog out for her morning walk (short and sweet: this is a potty trip only). When I get back inside, Bogey and I go for his walk (though I knew he'd probably already gone outside, but didn't want him to feel left out). All's well, so I settle onto the couch, open my book "The Accidental Asian" by Eric Liu, and proceed to read for about a page. Byz (the second dog) is laying at my feet in the living room on the rug. Bogey has his belly pressed against the tile floor in the kitchen, ten feet away, and watches me from across the room. Just as I get absorbed in the book and confident that I can and will finish it today...I hear it. That gurgling, gagging in the back of his throat. I look up just in time to see Bogey throw up...again. And not on the tile where he was laying, but he made an extra special effort to get it on the rug. Again. 

Out to the yard with Bogey. Back to the coffee table with Eric Liu. On my hands and knees cleaning puke. Again.

Then we all settle back into our routine once more...and Bogey gets sick two more times, in a row and on the rug this time. Everything stops. This continues until Bogey has thrown up a grand total of five times, not to mention the puddle of dry bile I found in the bedroom in a corner...something that probably happened while D and I slept. This brings us to six. At this point, Bogey has been sick for hours. Dustin is awake; we've had breakfast and Byz has decided to join in the fun by PEEING all over the kitchen floor. (I should explain that this is typical of her when she is not getting attention or feels she is not getting the attention she wants because Bogey was getting so much attention. I don't expect her to understand the complexity of WHY he was getting the attention. I'm just perplexed by her ability to be spiteful and act on it in this manner. And trust me, it's purposeful. This is not the first time she's resorted to the pee-tactic.) Time to call the doctor who, in turn, tells us to medicate him with four milligrams of Benadryl, keep him calm and in a quiet place so he won't get anxious or upset. Don't feed him much. Right. 

Here is what poor Bogey looks like on Benadryl:
Perhaps the word you are looking for is "stoned?" Poor baby couldn't even focus his eyes for more than a minute. For a brief period of time, calmness ensued. I fell asleep, accidentally, while reading. Dustin read the better part of a book. Three hours passed without incident and we let Bogey out of the laundry room (the emptiest, all tile, confined space in the house). All was right with the world.

I continued with my day as if nothing had happened and, for a while, my day could be summed up like this:
I finished that book (which inspired SO much thought for my dissertation revisions!), updated my comps list, worked on the questions for my comps a little and fed the dogs. We walked them, put Bogey in the "Calm Room" again and headed off to the 9:50 showing of G.I. Joe.

If you have seen this movie, skip this next paragraph as I am about to rant for a few sentences. If you have not, bear with me. (Actually, skip to the very last paragraph as my rant went on for MUCH longer than expected. My apologies. I had no idea I felt so strongly about my dislike for this film!)

A few months ago D and I went to see the movie "The Watchmen" and I wrote a blog on how disappointed I was which, if you're interested, you can read here. I would, however, be hard pressed to find a film worse than the one we saw tonight...(and, by the way, there are some similarities to "The Watchmen" in plot--at least the "why" of why the villain--or in this case, lesser villain--claims to be doing what he's doing). Where to even begin with the horrific experience we just sat through! I once dated a guy who, after a long day of work, expr
essed the desire to go see a movie that was "All action, no plot." The creators of this movie attempted to have both action AND plot, but failed to set a standard for either. Or, if they did, it was extremely low. The acting was average, the dialogue made me sick to my stomach ("Try this on for size, boys"...and "What'd you say your unit was called?...'I didn't."), the
explosions and mindless action gave me a headache. I almost broke into tears of laughter at moments where no one else was laughing...simply because the dialogue and delivery was so ridiculous. Seriously. At first I thought it was the popcorn that was making me physically react with a headache and a sickly stomach, but after much careful consideration while more poor dialogue was spouted off, I knew I was wrong. The last time I felt that way during a movie was when we saw "The Watchmen!" Weird.

I hated what Stephen Sommer (writer and director on this one) did to the romantic ideas I had about the cartoon I watched as a child. The Baroness and Duke were engaged and star-crossed lovers? Covergirl dies via knife in the back less than halfway through the movie? Icy chunks sink when the ice-lair is exploded (doesn't that defy the laws of physics...or, at least, the laws of ice?)? Cobra is really RELATED to the Baroness? What is the world of G.I. Joe coming to? They packed in more cliche and corny lines (both story and spoken) than three or four 80's movies combined. Besides the predictability of every single moment of this movie, the acting sucked (did anyone else notice that "Duke" is, essentially, a Brad Pitt-wannabe? I began wondering whether his real job is as Brad Pitt's stunt double and since they couldn't get Brad for this role they just cast the guy who normally doesn't...and shouldn', instead). The story mimicked others we've seen very recently. 

I'm all for being entertained by a movie, even if it's not Oscar Award worthy or even particularly awesome ("The Hangover," for example, was entertaining, but not a fabulous masterpiece of cinematic genius by any account.) This movie couldn't even do the basic service of entertaining me. But more than anything, I felt taken advantage of when I left the theatre. Like the movie creators capitalized on a dear childhood ritual of mine: racing inside after a long day of school followed by run-down in the local empty lot with a bunch of neighborhood kids, up to my parents' room (the only one with a working t.v. my dad wasn't watching the news on), sitting too-close to the t.v. cross-legged on the wooden floor with my brother and singing the theme song. We sat there fixated until the credits rolled and the Public Service Announcement ended. (Not old enough then to note the irony of the violence throughout the half hour show immediately followed by the warnings to "Not talk to strangers" or "Not use a stove without parents" or, my personal favorite, "Don't fight" all given to us by cartoons that solved problems with violence first, conversation and understanding second or not at all.)

I expected the movie to be crap. I'd read the reviews and, though D was the one who kept suggesting we see it with a boyish twinkle of excitement in his eye, I'd be a liar if I said I wasn't lured in by the call of my childhood self, as well. This is precisely what the movie makers expected: to make millions of dollars off of those of us who loved G.I. Joes enough to not let our siblings play with the plastic men unless carefully supervised (my brothers). This is exactly what they were banking on when they watched the film all the way through after the final edits and went ahead with it, anyway. (Let's face it. There is NO way they watched it at that point and thought: THIS ROCKS!) They thought: This will make us money! Those children of the eighties will come running. And run we did...right out of the theatre and back to the jeep where we breathed easier and recounted our memories of the cartoon show...our favorite moments, characters, weapons. "Every time Covergirl rode in with this big missile tank, like a mobile SAM, I knew shit was going to go down. The only one I liked more was the bridge layer. My favorite. It was awesome," D struggled between his nostalgia for the "old days" and his calm dismay at the atrocity that had been made of it. G.I. Joe the film, much like Covergirl the character, died as fast as it flashed onto the screen. 

Needless to say, it was disappointing (at best). When we got back to the house, we were pleased to find that Bogey had not gotten sick in the laundry room and Byz had behaved splendidly...but just as those very thoughts finished forming in our minds, Bogey threw up two more times and Byz peed all over the floor. We cleaned up the mess, cracked a beer and cheers-ed to what we hope will be a better tomorrow.

Hope your day was better than ours!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Our Summer in Photos!

It's like I hit 98 blogs and immediately stopped posting! So sorry, fair readers! However, we've returned from an INSANE summer filled with weddings, deaths, births, jobs, love and breakdowns. All the makings of a reality t.v. show (or if you were born BEFORE reality, a soap opera). Just to give you a quick idea of what our summer was like...I give you a photo montage! In chronological order...

Stacy and Todd's Wedding

Dustin, Me and our new friend Jill

The BEAUTIFUL Bride and Groom

Anabella's First Trip to the Beach

Bella and Coire

Us in the Pool
Pre-Wedding Events

College Roommates Meighan and Ali Two Days Before Nups

Girish, Danielle, Jimmy and Kier: After Rehearsal Dinner Welcome Party!
Soon-to-be-marrieds! Summer and Keith.

Wedding: Bride Cam-Style

Some of My Ladies: Lindsay, Erin, Sar and Seale
Most of the boys: Kelpe, Trickey, Kurt, Brian, Matt, Becky (wife of...)Carl, D and Andy
One of our Flower Girls, G, and Dustin
Two of our most favorite people AFTER the wedding with D. Meghan and Tim!
The Honeymoon!
Hot Springs in Santorini!
Farmer's Market in Dubrovnik, Croatia
Castle at Monaco
Il Duomo: Firenze, Italia
Trevi Fountain
Poseidon's Temple: Greece
On the Boat at Sundown!
At the TOP of Mt. Vesuvius
Our Dinner-Mates!
In Barcelona with HS Buddy James
Park in Barcelona: Can You Spot the Husband?
Barcelona at Night

The Aftermath: Working & Living in Charlotte
Baby Sister's 27th! Oh, my!
Sleeping in Charlotte
Fourth of July: Risk
Karaoke at our place of Employment
Baltimore Stop on our Way to a Wedding in Philly
Staying with College Roommates the night before the wedding
Wedding Reception
The Newlyweds: Jill and Liam-(who I've been friends with since 1st grade!)
Cape Friends in Philly!?!
Visiting the Carolina Raptor Center near Charlotte
Our Job with Wings! (Wild Wing Cafe, University Park, Charlotte, NC)

That's not ALL we did this summer, of course, but it gives you an idea of what a whirlwind our summer has been. There are other photos and events not included just yet: the reception my mother-in-law threw us back in Cape Girardeau, the Jour de Fete 5k with the killer hill we ran last weekend followed by a super BBQ with two of our groomsmen (D's friends), their families and D's best friend Andy, the week we spent in Cape with D's brother...all the running around we've been doing since we got back...etc. If we make any reference to an event we haven't talked about this summer, we promise to give whatever back story is necessary.

Now that we're back in Columbia and have unpacked and put away all of our gifts and clothes...etc...we have been in "fix it" mode. Our AC unit leaked a pond into our garage so we were stuck with the task of fixing it. I did a check online for some advice, we followed the advice, and much to the huzba's surprise...IT WORKED! Flawlessly! The battery to the subaru legacy we've got died and today we're going to attempt to fix it. The car literally started to breakdown WHILE I was driving it the last four miles from the highway to our home a week ago. It made it right to our door then turned off and hasn't run since. We're hoping to get more time out of it and are considering "Cash for Clunkers." Does anyone know anything about that program? Or have reviews of it?

I'm in training mode for a half marathon at the end of September (the Roots and Blues Fest here in CoMo), but in the meantime...we are doing the Heart Walk on August 29th with our dear friend Lexie and are volunteering for the Heart of America Marathon over Labor Day weekend. Speaking of "training," I had the privilege of running with the Columbia Track Club yesterday during their "speed workout" and let me tell was like running with the US Olympic Track Team. These guys were awesome...and I was a SORRY sight for all runners. It was a bit embarrassing just how far behind them all I was (I mean they lapped me and could've done so about fifteen times), but they were so gracious and encouraging that I actually finished the whole workout. The mileage was nothing I don't ordinarily run, it was the tempo-ing and the stopping and starting and quickness that I'm not used to. This means I need to work harder and get better so that NEXT time I join them for a workout I've improved. So, even though I'm pretty sure they don't read this, a giant shout out of thanks! to the Columbia Track Club...especially Ted and Tony and Beth for getting me out there to begin with!

What's up next, you ask?
Well, the semester starts in a little over a week. The fair in Cape and my mother-in-law's birthday is next month. D has a wedding in Mexico in October and I have a wedding in September near Philly. Unfortunately, we can't both attend both weddings as finances won't allow it (does anyone else have the problem of being a grad student and NOT getting paid for the majority of the summer months??? It SUCKS!) I am taking my comps this semester (I know, I know...finally!) and, we're playing in a Whiffleball Tournament in October, as well! But, from now on, there will be consistent updates since there is consistency to our lives again so check back, sign up, stick with us...the best is yet to come!

Hope you're all enjoying your summers and can't wait to catch up on all the adventures you've blogged about!

N and D