Monday, June 30, 2008

Vocabulary of a Baby Cricket

It's so cute when kids learn how to talk. What they hear then repeat don't necessarily match.

My Little One, she often refers to herself as a cricket. I don't remember how that got started excatly but she calls me Mama Cricket and herself Baby Cricket...her sister is Sister Cricket and of course, Daddy is Daddy Cricket.

Here are a few examples of some cute things My Little One, the Baby Cricket, says:

tuggle = snuggle
petty = spaghetti
toot nack = fruit snack
groofug = group hug
fweet = sweet
peak panish = Speak Spanish

This is cute, too. When she is trying to say, "You're the best mom in the whole world!" it comes out, "you mom in da whole best wooled!". Oh! LOVE IT.

Now...on the other end of the verbal abilities spectrum, she can whip out a mean "I apologize". It comes out smoothly, crisply and perfectly enunciated. She can also say "I don't like chocolate chunks" clear as day. And, she touches my soul when she distinctly relays her affection for me, "I love you, mama. You're my best."

I love you too, Pone.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Book List

I'm not sure what this list is supposed to prove (if anything), but I found it on utterscoundrels livejournal site and decided I'd post my experience. Makes me wish I had more time to read! It helps to have an advanced reader child in my house. We'll be trying these together I'm sure.

Instructions:
1) Look at the list and bold those you have read.
2) Italicise those you intend to read.
3) Underline the books you LOVE.
4) Reprint this list in your own LJ

LIST:
1. Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
2. The Lord of the Rings - JRR Tolkien (not even interested)
3. Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
4. Harry Potter series - JK Rowling (will not read)
5. To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
6. The Bible (I've read parts)
7. Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
8. Nineteen Eighty Four - George Orwell
9. His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman
10. Great Expectations - Charles Dickens
11. Little Women - Louisa M Alcott (my all time favorite book)
12. Tess of the D'Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy
13. Catch 22 - Joseph Heller
14. Complete Works of Shakespeare (does it count if I've just read them all seperately?)
15. Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier
16. The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien (so not my thing. ew)
17. Birdsong - Sebastian Faulks
18. Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger
19. The Time Traveller's Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
20. Middlemarch - George Eliot
21. Gone With The Wind - Margaret Mitchell
22. The Great Gatsby - F Scott Fitzgerald
23. Bleak House - Charles Dickens
24. War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy
25. The Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams
26. Brideshead Revisited - Evelyn Waugh
27. Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoyevsky
28. Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck
29. Alice in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll
30. The Wind in the Willows - Kenneth Grahame
31. Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy
32. David Copperfield - Charles Dickens
33. Chronicles of Narnia - CS Lewis
34. Emma - Jane Austen
35. Persuasion - Jane Austen
36. The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe - CS Lewis
37. The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini
38. Captain Corelli's Mandolin - Louis De Bernieres
39. Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden
40. Winnie the Pooh - AA Milne
41. Animal Farm - George Orwell
42. The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown
43. One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
44. A Prayer for Owen Meaney - John Irving
45. The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins
46. Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery
47. Far From The Madding Crowd - Thomas Hardy
48. The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood
49. Lord of the Flies - William Golding
50. Atonement - Ian McEwan
51. Life of Pi - Yann Martel
52. Dune - Frank Herbert
53. Cold Comfort Farm - Stella Gibbons
54. Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen
55. A Suitable Boy - Vikram Seth
56. The Shadow of the Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon
57. A Tale Of Two Cities - Charles Dickens
58. Brave New World - Aldous Huxley
59. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time - Mark Haddon
60. Love In The Time Of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
61. Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck
62. Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov
63. The Secret History - Donna Tartt
64. The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold
65. Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas
66. On The Road - Jack Kerouac
67. Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy
68. Bridget Jones' Diary - Helen Fielding
69. Midnight's Children - Salman Rushdie
70. Moby Dick - Herman Melville
71. Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens
72. Dracula - Bram Stoker
73. The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett
74. Notes From A Small Island - Bill Bryson
75. Ulysses - James Joyce
76. The Bell Jar - Sylvia Plath
77. Swallows and Amazons - Arthur Ransome
78. Germinal - Emile Zola
79. Vanity Fair - William Makepeace Thackeray
80. Possession - AS Byatt
81. A Christmas Carol - Charles Dickens
82. Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell
83. The Color Purple - Alice Walker
84. The Remains of the Day - Kazuo Ishiguro
85. Madame Bovary - Gustave Flaubert
86. A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry
87. Charlotte's Web - EB White
88. The Five People You Meet In Heaven - Mitch Albom
89. Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
90. The Faraway Tree Collection - Enid Blyton
91. Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad
92. The Little Prince - Antoine De Saint-Exupery
93. The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks
94. Watership Down - Richard Adams
95. A Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole
96. A Town Like Alice - Nevil Shute
97. The Three Musketeers - Alexandre Dumas
98. Hamlet - William Shakespeare
99. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl
100. Les Miserables - Victor Hugo

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

i love you KB (dallas)

i love it when people say what they feel. i admire it, actually. i suppress so much of what i feel, yet i am surrounded by beautiful, amazing people who are articulate, exact, own their feelings and apologize if need be. women who are resounding and unforgettable. friends who become fiber of my being; woven into the jackietapestry. kristine is one of those friends, those women, that kind of human....

K ~

you're infinite love for me is carrying me through these hard days. i love your laugh and smile. the laugh is infectious. i love that you have the ability laugh through your tears. you inspire me. when we share time in each other's presence, i hear the jingle jangle of your bracelets, notice what color you're wearing (easy when it's usually black HA!), that sort of thing....

cultured yet trapped into monotony, vibrant yet bogged down by social norms -- yeah. that's you (and me?)

i DO wish we had more time together. i DO wish it wasn't so hard to be my friend. i AM sorry i'm not a better one..... i DO love you infinitely. i AM thankful that you constantly reach out to me even in the times when i want to be alone. even better, i DO know you UNDERSTAND those times....and draw on your patience during my isolation.

you teach me.

even when you don't know it, i am learning from you.

i am watching.

i am paying attention.

i listen to you.

feel you.

when you don't even know it.

so back to work i go.... i'd rather be sipping some wine in Paris, splitting a baguette and people watching with you.

i am looking forward to more wine, duran duran concerts, north park visits, xo's in emails, stories of your family, hearing about your faith(s), withdrawals from one another after an all-to-brief visit.

happy birthday a little early, my sweet...

xo
~J


P.S. (i hope the guys out there pay attention to this blog because the bottom line to making a woman happy is....pay attention to her AND...TELL her you noticed (if you need examples, message me!).)

Happy Anniversary to Me!

Seven years.
I've been here seven years.
And I wouldn't trade 'em for the world.

What a great job I have! And a good company! I am sure I could be making about $20K+ more per year, but I won't have the benefits. It's a strong family-oriented company that's stable and growing. Social and fun, generous and dynamic.

The congrats came from unexpected sources. A couple of (ahem) Director's of Operations that've been here a little longer than me sent me well-wishes. One lady in the field location in Louisiana did, too. How fun!

My group went out to lunch to send off one of the landmen going to law school. Nice timing, huh? Then later today, there's birthday cake. All on my seventh anneversary -- all by coincidence. Woot!

Anyway....I'm thankful for my job. Since I *have* to work, it's the ideal situation.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Sound Advice from My Horoscope Today

Wed, Jun 18, 2008
Stop fighting the inner tidal wave of feelings that's agitating your emotions. Your fearful resistance to the unfamiliar intensity and the uncertainty of the mysteries within can be generating your fear now, and not the feelings themselves. Trust in the healing process the same way you'd trust a mathematical formula. You don't need to know the specifics to be touched by the magic.


Compassion Within Limits
You can earn others' respect by staying gracious under difficult circumstances. However, self-doubts may be highlighted. Be kind to yourself, so that negative judgment doesn't inhibit constructive change. Your responsibility is not to make everyone else happy, but to honor your own gifts. Be clear about what you expect from friends and partners. Relationships do not just happen magically, but require conscious effort and commitment now.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Father[ing]

I was thinking of how I usually dedicate this day to my biological father. And while he's been foremost on my mind today, I did happen to take some time throughout the day to invoke the memories of other influential fathers in my life....and I need to acknowledge them today.

In my mind, there are lots of different fathers, father figures, fatherly ways, etc., so I went to one of my favorite online sources to find the definition of 'father':

  • Dictionary.com Unabridged (v 1.1) - Cite This Source
    fa·ther –noun

    1. a male parent.
    2. a father-in-law, stepfather, or adoptive father.
    3. any male ancestor, esp. the founder of a race, family, or line; progenitor.
    4. a man who exercises paternal care over other persons; paternal protector or provider: a father     to the poor.
    5. a person who has originated or established something: the father of modern psychology; the       founding fathers.6. a precursor, prototype, or early form: The horseless carriage was the father of the modern         automobile.7. one of the leading men in a city, town, etc.: a scandal involving several of the city fathers.8. Chiefly British. the oldest member of a society, profession, etc. Compare dean1 (def. 3).
    9. a priest.
    10. (initial capital letter) Theology. the Supreme Being and Creator; God.
    11. a title of respect for an elderly man.
    12. the Father, Theology; The first person of the Trinity.
    13. Also called church father. Church History. Any of the chief early Christian writers, whose     works are the main sources for the history, doctrines, and observances of the church in the  
           early ages.
  • 14. Ecclesiastical. a. (often initial capital letter) a title of reverence, as for church dignitaries, officers of monasteries, monks, confessors, and esp. priests. b. a person bearing this title.
    15. fathers, Roman History. conscript fathers. –verb (used with object)
    16. to beget.
    17. to be the creator, founder, or author of; originate.
    18. to act as a father toward.
    19. to acknowledge oneself the father of.
    20. to assume as one's own; take the responsibility of.
    21. to charge with the begetting of. –verb (used without object)
    22. to perform the tasks or duties of a male parent; act paternally: Somehow he was able to               write a book while fathering.
+

After reading the aforementioned, I smiled satisfactorily. Below is my list of 'fathers' I'm thanking and grateful for today:

My Dad, the biological one

My father-in-law

My Godfather

God, THE Father

The Fathers of my Faith

The Founding Fathers of the country in which I reside

The father figure I used to work for in El Paso (the doctor)

+

Happy Father's Day




Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Graduates of Miss Trixies School of Fine Ladies Etiquette

I've had some out of town company visiting ~~ enjoying a few days off from work. It's been really nice to kick off the summer spending time with my kids and good friends.


The five of us girls went to Fort Worth yesterday to the Fort Worth Stockyards. The Cowboy Hall of Fame is there. After we watched the Cattle Drive, we mosied over to the Old Photo Shoppe where us fine ladies dressed in our fancy duds as loose saloon women from the Old West. Money tucked in our dresses and under our garters, throw in some guns, booze and a snarl, we were thrown back to the "good ole days".


My kids looked priceless!


Sunday, June 08, 2008

Sleeping Arrangements

My house is rarely a place of rest -- at least for me. The solitude for which I desperately long doesn't not exist here. This is not my sanctuary. Yet, it is serving a higher purpose; one that is temporary. I pray I have the perseverence to see it through. And I humbly accept that which I have been given. I suppose in a year's time, I'll be able to look in the rear view mirror with that gift of hindsight and see those stolen moments of quiet and peace I actually experienced in these tumultuous times, so I'll keep the faith. I am sad that I cannot yet call them by name when they occur.

One of my best friends is visiting. She lives in PA. Her aunt is also visiting. She lives in NY. The aunt's daughter deployed today for Iraq. Currently they are sleeping in my kid's bed. My Eldest is snoring on her stomach in her butterfly sleeping bag at the foot of our bed on the floor. My Little One, for the first time ever, is 'camping out' in her butterfly sleeping bag in my mother-in-law's room -- mother-in-law fast asleep in her own bed (a bed lent to her by my mom, though). My father-in-law lay asleep in the hospital bed in the living room. I think My Husband and I are the only people in our own bed.

This morning at 8:30, our doorbell rang. It was a geriatric doctor who makes house calls. She came by to assess my father-in-law. That was the beginning of the traffic in my home today. It's like that most days: physical therapy, home health nurse, occupational therapy. The family and friends visiting. The deacon of our church says he'll be by soon. Oh! The Eucharistic Minister comes by, though not as consistently. There's a lot going on here.

It's no wonder I feel out of sorts...unsettled....a feeling of not belonging.

Again, it's temporary. But it's still uncomfortable.

I just remembered why I really started this blog entry! (Funny how the mind works...)

The deacon gave the homily today at church (I love our deacon. I especially feel loved when he says to me in his Louisiana-speak, "well hello bebe".). Today's theme was about mercy and love, and how they are words used interchangeably. The homily ended with this exact phrase:

He loved me into being.

Wow! Beautiful, right? Even if you don't believe in God, it's a wonderfully profound and joyous notion to root yourself into...that you were created out of L O V E.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Six - Seven - Eight

Took the kiddos swimming today at the pool where we are members. As we strolled by the clubhouse, we were asked to be especially quiet because a wedding was being conducted. So we took our pool stuff to a table poolside and found a good view.

The bridal attendants -- four of them -- were stunning! Their dresses were fushia, halter style, full a-line skirts. The white chairs added such elegance. It occurred to me during the ceremony what the date is today. It's June 7, 2008.

Six, seven, eight.

I bet there were TONS of weddings today because of that number sequence, especially because it fell on a Saturday! I'll have to check the calendar when eight - eight - eight is....

Friday, June 06, 2008

Repeat Promises

So, um, it's probably not a good thing when one eats so many Dove Promises that when reading the Promise on the inside of the foil, one has seen them all. Well, almost all. Let's just say that one has read a lot of Dove Promises lately (okay, One confesses to indulging in the chocolate part, too), and well, a new Promise has finally been delivered:

"Sometimes a smile is worth more than a dozen roses"

Is it just me, or isn't a smile ALWAYS worth more than a dozen roses?!

I'm just sayin'....

*shrug*

Have any promises for me? Post 'em! (YOU can eat the chocolate.)

Monday, June 02, 2008

Congratulations Are In Order....

...to my brave My Mother In Law who drove for the first time today since the car accident!!

*round of loud, boisterous, obnoxiously enthusiastic applause*

It's a big day.

Overanalysis of My First Day Back To The Gym In Three or So Years

I *swear* I just lost 10 pounds in the 30 minutes I spent at the gym over my lunch hour today! I SWEAR IT!

Even my shoes fit looser.

Amazing.

It must be God's way of tricking me to go back...all this placebo elation. Or perhaps it's that wicked serotonin and norepinepherine braindrug stuff that has me feeling like what I did today actually made a dent in the last three years of not working out.

I eyed the scale after I changed out of my work clothes into my workout clothes (seems like there should be some sort of irony in all those 'work' kinds of clothes....hmm...hafta think on that a bit). I don't keep a scale at my house. I don't because I'll obsess and be on it every ten minutes or so. That's what some of us weight-obsessed people do: obsess about our weight on a scale. Anyway -- yeah. Highest weight EVER. So...momma's gotta take care of business.

I forgot my lock, so I daringly took the risk of having my Duran Duran VIP Astronaut travel bag stolen. Contents included my iPod (I took my Shuffle that I *thought* I had sync'd music on last night JUST so I could work out today with it, but nooooooooooooooooo. I was denied! I'm not iPod savvy. grrrr), my credit card, car keys, among other incidentals. Of all that, I probably would've been most disappointed about losing my bag. But I digress.

I'm out of practice for the lunch workout. After all, it's a finely orchestrated function to get to the gym, change clothes, work out, shower, re-dress and head out the door in about an hour or a little more. The shower part alone is it's own little process, especially when you're a gym shy girl like me. It's intimidating to be so overweight and be naked in front of very fit women of all ages (notice I didn't say skinny women...there is a difference sometimes). It's hard not to play those recordings of all those pesky life-draining insecurities about vanity that seemingly I never seem to completely mature out of. (And, yes, I am aware that the previous sentence is grammatically incorrect, but I can't control the effervescing braindump right now. I'm gushing with randomness and hyperactivity!) I'm not the kind of girl who is wired to use those images of fit women and that sense of feeling 'not the same' in order to motivate me to health.

Those people who are 400, 600, 800 pounds....I don't know how they get that way. Honestly. And how do they EVER recover from that?! I'm having a hard enough time as it is. Food is awful. It's almost worse than money. You can't live without food. You'll die. One can live without drugs, sex, alcohol, casinos, porn; but one cannot live with out food. Now. The *kind* of food is the hiccup. And THAT my friend is what I habit I need to improve. I contend changing diet is harder than disciplining myself to go to the gym. Because inevitably, my mind thinks: I can eat whatever I want because, hey, I'm workin' out.

WRONG!

Moderation is the key.

Day one down.
We'll see what tomorrow brings.

Loose shoes is a step in the right direction (pun intended)!