Monday, April 23, 2012

Books Books Books

I love love love to read and I cant remember I time that I didn’t. I pretty much have to read something (magazine, paper, book) every night before I go to bed. I don’t have a specific type of book that I stick to either. I like horrors, mystery, romance, comedy, everything. I was a lucky girl in that my mom and my grandma’s always read to me when I was younger. I was such a nerd in middle school that when I was old enough to start babysitting, I asked for books instead of money. The one lady I babysat for would take me with her to book store and I could pick out 2 books every time. I was in Heaven! I read all the Chronicles of Narnia (7 books) in 11 days during the summer after 6th grade. I would read and read then scramble like a crazy girl to get my chores done before my mom got home from work.  I am of the age that Judy Blume was in her prime and I devoured her books one after another. I loved Are you there God, it’s me Margaret?, Deenie, Blubber, and who can forget sneaking Forever from my teachers and Mom. I felt so grown up and could relate to Judy’s books the whole time.

I get most of my reading done when I’m traveling. I get to start reading while waiting to board, then I read during the flight, and I read once I get checked into the hotel. I can usually read about 2 books in a week. I love having the good ol’fashion book with paper pages for the most part but I am starting to warm up to reading them off my iPad too. I just have so many books on my shelves that I need to read. One of my personal goals is to read my “real” books first to start clearing out the shelves then start reading more on my iPad.  I’ll admit it’s so handy to just buy a book from wherever I am on the iPad when I’m traveling so I don’t have to hunt down a bookstore.
I just completed the Hunger Games last month and I am a big fan. They were so entertaining and I couldn’t put the books down. I haven’t seen the movie yet but I will. I am usually so disappointed in the movies because the books are so much more detailed. I still like to see the movies to make the comparisons.  I finished a book last night that was a final book of a series.  So now I have completed the whole Wicked series by Gregory Maguire. They start in this order - Wicked, Son of a Witch, A Lion Among Men, and Out of OZ: the final volume of the Wicked years. The book Wicked is the one that the musical was based from.  The musical is my all-time most favorite musical and I’ve seen it 3 times (Chicago, Columbus, and Dallas). The funny thing is that the book is totally for adults and I cringe when I think about all the Moms buying their daughters the book after the see the show. Like there are serious language and sex in the book that I wouldn’t want my nieces reading at their age. The author makes up so many words in these books that I think is so creative and funny that he does that. I can see where some people though could get stuck on this and think” what in the h*#l is this?!
I’m excited to start my next book tonight because its by a very funny author who is a famous blogger. Have you heard of The Bloggess? She’s on a book tour now and I really want to make a point to see her in Dallas. Oh my , is she hilarious! Her book is called “Let’s pretend this never happened ( a mostly true memoir)”.  I preordered in on Amazon so I can read from my Kindle app on iPad. Can’t wait!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Women's Retreats

I just  went to my first CHURCH women’s retreat last weekend and I’m glad I did to see what it was like.  I was not sure what to expect because I had only been to my first women’s retreat of any sort last year with my CMA group. Now I know that the CMA retreat was my favorite. I liked that the CMA had many different speakers and they each had their own style of presenting. We were given some time each day to pray and BE STILL but nothing more than an hour. Last weekend , the Church retreat gave us a 4 hour personal time and in my opinion that was too much.  Spending 120$ is a lot of money for you to not have something planned for 4 hours of that time. Don’t get me wrong, we made good use of that time. A handful of us got in the car and drove to the closest mall and went shopping. It was nice to get to know some of the ladies I go to church with better but I can shop on my own time. I want to know that the weekend was planned for me to reflect and pray more, and read my bible more along with the fellowship activities that are planned.  I can say that I don’t think I’ll probably attend another one with my church again but I’m glad that I gave it a try this time. I have been going to my church for a year and I only really knew 2 people that go there. Now I know  several more of the ladies and it makes me more at home with the church.  The scenery and the location of the retreat was nice. Texas Bluebonnets are out and were all over the retreat center. The location was about an hour south of Dallas and it was really pretty. My CMA chapter women’s retreat is in a few months (July) and I am going again. It’s going to be in a different location out in East Texas in one of my fave little towns that has good shopping on the square. How funny is it that now I could definitely appreciate a 4 hour break to shop on this retreat!?

Horizons women-i'm 5th from rt,2nd row

Bluebonnets south of Dallas (borrowed pic)

I am not traveling this week and so far I don’t have any tickets booked for anytime soon. I am loving it! I love love love my job and I don’t mind the traveling. But it is SO great to have these breaks in between where I am not packing every Sunday night. I have been meeting a few of my friends for dinner and visiting my Dad when I can. I happen to have a date night with Dad tonight. I’m taking him some BBQ after work and we’ll just chill at the house for a while. Poor Dad, he’s still on a gluten free, sugar free diet to prepare for the stem cell treatment coming up soon.  My conversation on the phone was funny earlier today while trying to decide what to bring for dinner.
Me: how about beef and broccoli from a Chinese place?
DAD: sounds good but I can’t have the sugary sauce they cover it in.
Me: hmm, ok how about tacos?
Dad: tacos are good but I cant eat the shells
Me: dang! Lets see- Italian is out of the question because of the pasta.
Dad: I can eat meat and vegetables so bring us some BBQ!
Me: perfect! No sides like friend okra and macaroni cheese but maybe they’ll have some green beans. 
I respect my step mom so much because she’s had to be creative every day in preparing his meals. She’s traveling with her job this week so I’m glad to be in town so I can take care of Dad.
Update: we should hear pretty soon from the Dr for notice that the stem cells are ready to go and then they’re off to Santa Domingo. Cross your Fingers!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Storms and Easter -Oh My

If you watch the news at all you’re probably aware of the horrible tornadoes that hit Dallas and surrounding areas last week. Ironically, I normal travel every Monday and my truck would be parked in covered at the airport but I wasn’t scheduled to leave until Wednesday.  It was so scary and destructive. The huge blessings is that there was  not one fatality. Of course there was injuries but nothing critical. There is footage where there are tractor trailers being tossed in the air like matchsticks. So crazy!!  We got hail the size of golf balls in my area and my boyfriend had baseball size where he was. I was cringing because my poor truck was not covered at our office. In less than half mile away the cars had hail that actually broke out their back windshields. Can you imagine?  

I was scheduled to leave the following morning to travel to Atlanta but over 400 flights were cancelled by AA.  I got up super early knowing that the airport was going to be a zoo and I assumed the flights would be closer to being on track. I called the AA automated checkin and it said that my flight was on time so I waited to speak to agent and she said “oh yeah- that flights been cancelled and no other flights going out until next day”. I asked them to put me on a Delta flight and they were able to get me on one leaving that same night only at 8 pm arriving in Atlanta at 11pm. I was just happy to get there because I had classes to train on Thursday that took lots of preparation and others were flying in for the class from other states as well.

  It was such a whirlwind trip in Atlanta. I got to my hotel by midnight and got up early to find a Starbucks and be at office  ready to roll by 8am.  After work I met my cousin Lauren at a fun restaurant called The Vortex. Its kinda biker bar burger joint and its been on Food Network from having a crazy burger with eggs and on it. Yuck. I didn’t order that of course. After we had dinner we went to a Starbucks a few doors down so that she could help me work on my blog. Lauren has had a blog for a long time and she is the one who gave me the courage to start mine. We got kicked out of Starbucks at 9 and we sat in my rental car for another hour just talking and getting caught up. I love my cousin so much and wished she would move to Texas right now! She’s working on it.  Just  a matter of her husband finding a job in his field first.  I didn’t get to my hotel room until almost 11 because I had to stop and fill my rental car up with gas and I didn’t want to do next morning on way to airport.  My cousin and a coworker told me that I should leave really early to avoid Atlanta rush hour downtown and with it being Good Friday the airports might be busy.  SO, I got up at 5 and was out the door by 5:45 am. There was no traffic at all and I was able to get on an earlier flight on standby arriving almost 2 hours earlier than my original flight.YAY!  I just wished I was a plane sleeper but I just can’t sleep at all so I read while I’m traveling.
How was your Easter? Mine was great- busy but great. Went to our church service that was really nice. We had a wooden cross with chicken wire wrapped around it and buckets of flowers beneath it. Each family was to put a flower through the wire and between both services it would be completely covered. The flowers also represented a prayer requests for our family. I thought that was really cool.

After church we went to my boyfriends parent house and took them some Bar-B-Que so they didn’t have to cook.  We visited for a while and then we had to head off to my aunts house about 45 minutes east of Dallas (Rockwall). We were so full from lunch we couldn’t eat again but I did have some yummy desserts. I saw so many desserts from pinterest. I think its so great when people are actually making things they pin. I still haven’t but I plan on it!
I am not traveling this week or in the next couple of weeks and I feel like I’m on some sort of vacation. I am spending some evenings after work with some of my girlfriends and catching up. YAY!
Talk to ya later.

Monday, April 2, 2012

No more baby showers- yes i love kids!

Last weekend I made an exception for a sweet sweet friend and attended her baby shower.  Recently, I made it a rule in my very own rulebook that I am not to go to any baby shower at all- ever.  Please understand that it’s what I had to do for my own feelings. I was never able to have children. I don’t mention that fact often (or never on this blog until now).  I had many bad plumbing issues to start with then I had sealed the deal a few years ago when I had the procedure :endometrial ablation.  Did I want children of my own? Of course I did.  It was also very difficult to meet a man in my younger child-bearing days to explain that I could never have his child. At many times, those men would walk away and I didn’t blame them.  I was fortunate in my last relationship that he was ok with or without kids and it was nice for me to not have that pressure. 
When I go to a baby shower I feel like a fish out of water among all the women there. Always!!  I have no special tips, cravings, favorite diapers, breast feeding skills, etc that I can share like the rest. I have no desire to play all the games on guessing “what’s in the paper bag?” because they are baby stuff of which I’m not familiar with buying  (yep we played that last week and it was a baby on board sign and I guessed a coaster). The only thing good out of shower is the first 5 minutes to see all the cute decorations and the punch. Seriously, why don’t we drink punch more except at showers (baby and wedding)?  I am going start making punch more starting this weekend.
I have no problem at all buying the gifts that the mother-to –be has registered for. I still love shopping all the same even if its baby stuff. I just seem to be getting more sensitive the older I get.  I feel like I’m allowed to have a pity party a couple of times a year when I remind myself that I have no children to take care of me or put me in an old folks home.  I went through one period of my life where I decided I would adopt a child from Mexico, Asia, wherever.  I was really excited about it but GOD had other plans.  I was still not in a relationship at that time and my income was steady but not much to provide all the adoption costs. It was soon in that time frame that I got my new position in my company that requires me to travel A LOT!
When I was just out of high school one of my BFF’s got pregnant that summer. My mom and I both got to be in the delivery room with her when the baby girl  was born. My friend and her baby lived us for a while after they left the hospital.   It was now that baby girl who is now pregnant with a baby girl of her own so I broke my rule and went to her shower.  It was decorated precious and a ton of ideas were taken off Pinterest.  I didn’t take any pictures, sorry.
I will tell you that being a step-parent has been the next part of my dreams of ever being included in a family. I am so blessed to have 2 of the most AMAZING, TERRIFIC step parents a girl could group with!  Both of my parents have both been divorced a couple of times each so I had my share of total step-monsters to deal with. That is why I can say I know within the very depths of my being a woman, I can love someone else’s children like my very own. I know the fine balance between not trying to be their real mom but being the bonus mom to support them at all times. I love my step dad so much and I considers me one of his own. My step mom is the same way. I have a step brother and step sister that I love with all my heart. Who can really define a perfect family? Does it really have to be by blood? I don’t think so.  In my next relationship, I can only pray that this dream of bonus kids will come true.  And I am going back to my rule book and not going to another baby shower again.  Its not personal to you my friends or mothers to be, let’s meet the next day and I will shower you with gifts while at our fave Starbucks.  It may seem selfish but I just don’t want to go into a party and leave sad like I do.  I should really get a dog again. Maybe that would help.