Sunday, November 30, 2008

Early Christmas

We went out on Black Friday- the only time I've ever gone shopping on Black Friday and it was so worth it. We got a washer and dryer! Sears had some amazing deals that I'd been watching for weeks. We ended up getting the pair for about what it would have cost for just the washer regularly! I am so excited that I can finally do my own laundry in my own home without having to go to the laundry room to do it- I hate it when strangers can see my underwear!

I can't even find the washer or the dryer on the Sears website any more, otherwise I'd add a link.

All in all on Friday we went to Sears, Jo-Anns, Starbucks and the grocery store. Obviously the grocery store was deserted the day after Thanksgiving, and Jo-Anns was much less crowded than Sears- which still wasn't that bad... But the Starbucks was insane. Holy cow apparently people need to be caffeinated to shop (which I get), but the Starbucks people were just not equipped for the onslaught- I bet we waited more than ten minutes after placing our order before getting our first drink and another five minutes after that to get the second one. We had a grand time talking and people-watching in the meantime, but I did think it was interesting that of Sears and Starbucks, Starbucks won the Crazy Black Friday Crowd award, in my book.

Oh, and we saw Dark Knight yesterday. Ranger Man loved it and I closed my eyes and bawled through the whole thing. If there hadn't been people sitting on either side of us, I probably would have gotten up and waited in the lobby. Creeped me out much to much. It was fun to go to the movies though, like a date or something!

And because I really have nothing exciting (besides the laundry machines!) to say... Here's some Georgia Tree-Action!


Saturday, November 29, 2008

Google's funny!

I am not the only person who gets creeped out by random friend requests/what have you on facebook. Someone got to my blog by googling "friend request creeped out" of course, for a while there, I was getting quite a few hits off of "barracks whore," although it looks like I'm (finally) off the first page of google for that search.

It does make me wonder- what are people actually looking for by typing "barracks whore?" pictures? tips? how to become one? where to find one? It makes me laugh.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Egg Nog, Egg Yuck.

I love Christmas. My birthday is Christmas Eve- so I have always been the worst kind of Christmas nerd. In deference to those around me, I will wait until Thanksgiving, but at that time- the Christmas Carols go on, the Christmas moves get watched... I love it so much. I even love it after 5 years working retail in (gasp) malls for 3 of those years- I'm a diehard. Although, I won't lie- Macy's at Christmas does more than fulfill the need for Christmas songs. But I digress.

So eggnog is sort of Christmas-y, but more simply holiday-y, so I didn't think it was breaking the Thanksgiving rule to get some Eggnog at the store the other night. It was Vanilla Eggnog, which I had never seen anywhere on the West coast, so I was excited to try it. And yum! it's really good. (Sidenote: good in coffee too!).

Downside to this lovely eggnog: Webster also, apparently, thinks it is lovely and when I left my glass on the table to wind the yarn, he hopped up on the table (bad Webster!) and helped himself. Ranger Man and I learned, about ten minutes after we detached the cat from the glass of eggnog- he was really going at it- that kitty tummies and eggnog are not a good combination. Ranger Man now calls it Egg Yuck. Poor Webster.

I'm excited because I've only got two days of work and then a 5 day weekend! My goals for this weekend:
  • Graft the toes on the two pairs of socks that are sitting on my coffee table that are completed except for the grafting.
  • Finish the book I'm reading for my final book review for this semester.
  • At least outline that book review
  • Start reading for this final major paper of the semester
  • Eat lots of pie.

Looks like a good list to me!

Webster before the egg yuck... Ranger Man playing with beads:


Poor kitty...

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Nothing exciting here

Work and school (mostly school) and also Ranger Man randomly coming home and randomly going back (again, mostly school) has fried my brain. I have no brain left. So instead, here are some of the pictures from the photography class the other weekend. In the next few weeks there will probably be many more cop-out posts like this one.



On the other hand, I did finally get the yarn for Mystic Ice wound, and the shawl started. I'm on row 15 (did I mention my brain is fried?).

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

It must be the end of the Semester...

Because all I can think about is how much reading and writing I have to do, but all I really want to do is wind that skein of tencel laceweight I got in the mail yesterday and start Mystic Ice. It's a very tangled skein right now, although it doesn't look as bad as Cookie's.


On the bright side- I turned in Major Paper #1 for this semester this morning. All that's left is one very minor paper, one book review and Major Paper #2. And I have until 12/10. That's only 7ish books that I need to read between now and then and who knows how many articles. That's probably do-able.

Monday, November 17, 2008


Secession? People are talking about secession? Is it bad that reading that article kind of made me giggle?

For the record: I live in Georgia, and I haven't heard anyone talk about secession. But- I also stay out of the 'country' parts of town (not really sure where they are, but I stay away none the less).

But then I was thinking: What if it's not just MSM crazy over-reacting yellow reporting? Theoretically, what would secession look like in 2009? And how on earth would I avoid it and get back to the land of the Yankee? What would they do with all the soldiers on post? Would every single member of the US Armed forces stationed south of the Mason-Dixon (or its 2009 equivalent) line be moved North of the line? Logistically, how is the possible? Do they know how long that would take?

Apparently I've been a little too engrossed with schoolwork lately, because once I actually started thinking about that, it was quite an interesting proposition. Silly and giggle-prompting yes, but still interesting.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

The silver lining

Really- yesterday was horrible and I don't care to repeat it. I'm a worrier anyways, and when there really is something to worry about, it isn't pleasant.

But, throughout the whole thing, when he was sick and when we went to the hospital, I kept thinking to myself "I'm so glad that I'm here and he doesn't have to be by himself." I told him that yesterday when we (briefly) talked on the phone. Not that this made it all worth it or anything, but he replied to me that he felt the same way- that he was glad I was there too. It sounds sappy, but that was a really validating and wonderful thing to hear. Sometimes I'm afraid that he just takes care of me, and that I'm just along for the ride and it was really great to be able to help him, and for him to really recognize and feel that I could do something so tangible and concrete for him. But as great as it was, it wasn't great enough to wish that sort of situation on us on a regular basis. No thank you. Still, it was a nice ending to an icky day, a silver lining in a really dark cloud.

I'm still pretty sleepy, maybe later this weekend I'll write about the guy I met in the ER... it was an interesting night.

He's Okay.

He called last night. He didn't have to go back to the hospital or anything yesterday. He can call every once in a while, and the best part of all- he gets to come home on Sundays!

Thank you all so much for your hugs and well wishes- as long as he can take care of himself enough to stay out of the hospital for the rest of the week, he'll be back home this weekend and I can take care of him the right way!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Craptastic GoodBye

Okay, I'm going to try to explain what happened. One, because it's kind of sucky and misery loves company and two because I feel so frustrated that I'm hoping for some catharsis.

Ranger Man was supposed to report to his course today, and it sounds like they were kicking it off with a PT test. Ranger Man was really nervous about this course, because although it's a regular Army course, he's still required to uphold Ranger standards and expected to pass with flying colors. Unfortunately, he's been sitting in classrooms for the last year, and not working out or doing field problems so he has been a little nervous.

We went to bed around 9 last night, and he felt fine. He started to say that he was feeling nervous. We were talking and feeling okay about the goodbye and the separation, and right about at ten it was apparent that he wasn't feeling well. It was gross. Let's just say he couldn't keep fluids in his body. Initially he attributed it to nerves, but after a few hours that was obviously not the problem. I rubbed his back and watched him get sicker and sicker from 10 until 3. At 3 he handed me the keys to his truck, with the DoD decals, to drive him to the ER. He must have been really, really ill to even consider letting me drive his baby.

I knew, logically, that he had the flu or food poisoning or something like that and he wasn't dying. That didn't make it much less scary. He's the one that is big and strong and takes care of me. When we were trying to leave, he put his shoes on by the door, I left the room and then re-entered it (less than 2 minutes gone), and he was face down, flat on the floor. I asked him if I should call an ambulance, because if he was collapsing, I wasn't sure if I could get him down the stairs. He was completely white, no color in his face and he was experiencing chills. We outfitted him with a bucket for the car ride, and he made it down the stairs- we were off to the ER.

They set him up in a little room in the ER, ran a line and gave him a total of 3 units of fluid. 3 units is a lot! They gave him an anti-nausea to stop the vomiting and he was finally able to sleep, and the color returned to his face. They discharged him at about 7:30 in the morning, with 48 hours quarters (the doctor's note telling him to stay in bed for two days), and some medication.

In the parking lot, he got on the phone with his bosses, and agreed to stop by 'the office' right then, to discuss what to do. Of course they decided to send him to the course. He has to pass this course in order to get promoted, and the course isn't offered again for another 7 months. If he doesn't get promoted he's (a) kind of stuck professionally for a while and (b) stuck without BAH still for the next seven months. I'm sure there were more reasons, but those are the only two that I'm privy to. So we're off to his barracks room to grab his things, him still feeling like garbage- just not throwing up any more, and smelling like he'd been seriously ill all night, and me really trying to just make sense out of everything that had just happened- when I hadn't gotten any sleep since 24 hours previously.

He dropped me back off here at the apartment and he was off- a hug good bye and that's it. I have no idea when (if?) he'll be able to call, if he's okay, if he did that PT test which probably would land him back in the hospital... Not to mention, I'm praying that I don't get whatever he had.

Is it bad that part of my frustration is because for a good chunk of last night it seemed inconceivable that he would be going to this course. He was supposed to spend today in bed, with Webster, recovering... and I know it's bad that I got my hopes up for that, but I did. As much as I hated that he was sick, it was difficult to be really upset that he might be home for the next few weeks instead of gone. And then, in an instant, that was gone again and I was so tired and worried and so keyed up still from being wound tighter than a drum all night long - it was really hard and frustrating.

I finally got some sleep- I left work early and came home and slept for a while. I'll go back to sleep really soon, because that 28 hours without sleep thing wasn't so much fun.

That is our craptastic good-bye this morning. Really, really awful. It's one thing to say "Good bye, I don't know when I'll talk to you again, but be careful" when you know that he's at least starting out okay. He didn't start out okay, which means I don't know if he's okay now.

Ew Yuck and Sleep

There are some good-byes that are really good- not too sad, well-prepared and looking forward to the hello at the other end.

There are some good-byes that are terrible because of the people involved- egos, sadness and despair.

Then there are some good-byes that suck because of nothing that anyone did, but because of the worst possible timing.

I'm too tired right now- but let me say Ew, Gross, and So So Sleepy right now. Oh, and I have no idea if Ranger Man is okay (as in, in good health) right now. I'd give it a fifty-fifty shot and that's being generous.

On the bright side, I now know how to get to the ER on post.

More later when the words aren't cris-crossing on my screen.

Monday, November 10, 2008

A leaf.

Just a couple pictures from the nature photography class we went to yesterday. We had a fantastic time- although we usually do when we do something together. I started out on my craptastic camera, and then Ranger Man took pity on me and let me use one of his. I don't have any of the pics I took on his cameras on my computer, yet, but here's one of the least icky ones I took with mine. Two more days until he's gone again... luckily I have tomorrow off work too! I'm sure it will be mostly spent packing (unless he does it today), but we'll still have a great day and then I will get back to the grindstone while he's gone again.


I think that I've done a much better job than I anticipated of keeping up with school while he was here- I was a little afraid that my classes would go way downhill once my wonderful distraction was here, and it's not like I have classes to go to every week for accountability. But I kept just as much on top of things, if not more so, while he was here as I did while he was gone. Getting up with him early in the morning was the perfect time to get stuff done. Now I'm sure that I don't have the willpower to get up at 5 on my own so I'll have to adjust my schedule again and try to find something that works. Hm. Webster is not going to be happy- he liked having me up all morning long!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

A Parade!

It's our 'last weekend.' He's not going away away right now, but ugh. He's still leaving again. On the bright side, last weekends are usually filled with fun stuff (and some tears, but mostly fun stuff), so here's a run down of yesterday:

Ranger Man and I happened to be at a bike shop downtown yesterday, and all of a sudden there was a parade marching down the street! No kidding. It was some sort of Masonic get together parade? I am not sure, it wasn't in the paper or anything, but there were Masonic lodges from all over- Chicago, Arkansas, the Bahamas... and it was pretty cool to get to see the parade.

Then we took a walk by the river to see the turtles, it was a beautiful sunny day and the turtles were sunning themselves on rocks. There was one little turtle that was all by himself right up next to the sidewalk and I named him Melvin. I wish I had brought my camera!

We had lunch at a Caribbean restaurant (following the Bahamas theme), and went grocery shopping. It was nice- a real day with just the two of us, no Army stuff to get done, no immediate school deadlines for me, just nice and relaxed. Lots of talking about nothing and just being happy to be together, for once. This school that he's going to isn't so long, it's just a little over a month, so in the grand scheme of things it's not that big of a deal, but it was nice to have a mellow and fun day before he leaves.

Today should be even better. Except for having to do laundry, we're going to take a photography class together. Hopefully I'll have some good pictures to share at the end of the day!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

ahh, somebody likes me!

Loquita gave me a blog award, and said some very nice things about my blog! I'm touched!

I'm supposed to answer the questions with one word, but I don't think that's going to work. One of my undergrad professors told me that I was prone to rhetorical flourishes (he was a journalism teacher and that was a bad thing), and I haven't looked back since. No pithy responses from me! Plus, Ranger Man made me a Lemon Drop and some Mac and Cheese due to my icky day and the Lemon Drop is... well, I'm feeling it!

1. Where is your cell phone? in my purse. No. In my jacket pocket. I called my dad on my way home to whine about being a jerk and making students cry...

2. Where is your significant other? This is so cool- he's right in front of me. I can see him. He's putting together the dresser we got at IKEA last Sunday so we have somewhere to put our clothes. He's also watching some Steven Seagal (sp?) movie or another.

3. Your hair color? My hair isn't sure what color it wants to be. Blondish-reddish? darker underneath? It got pretty blonde while I was on the Island.

4. Your mother? Has turned into a raving lunatic lately.

5. Your father? Is an all around good guy who seems to be much better natured now that he doesn't have to deal with my lunatic mother.

6. Your favorite thing? hm. Ranger Man? Webster? Knitting? I have no idea

7. Your dream last night? It was probably bad. But luckily I don't remember it. All I remember from last night is being really cold and having someone to snuggle with.

8. Your dream/goal? being Dr. KJ, or getting my JD. When I took the LSAT (when I was 19), I promised myself that if I didn't go to law school I would get a PhD and be Dr. KJ. I'm still working on that goal. Then I want to make brilliant contributions to the scholarship in my field.

9. The room you're in? The living room

10. Your hobby? Knitting! (duh)

11. Your fear? edited to not jinx anything.

12. Where do you want to be in six years? See number 8.

13. Where were you last night? here, with Ranger Man. After Arabic class, that is.

14. What you're not? um, sober? the lemon drop is helping me not feel like a jerk, but it's not helping me feel sober.

15. One of your wish list items? hm... a bunch of books for my thesis. Yarn, of course... and I've promised myself that when i finish my thesis I can learn how to spin - so a spindle and fiber. Ranger Man says he's going to make me a wheel (how cool is that?!)

16. Where you grew up? The PNW- practically South Canada

17. The last thing you did? Well, technically I'm participating in an online chat for my Art History class, so hopefully the last thing I did was make a meaningful contribution to my class.

18. What are you wearing? PJs!

19. Your T.V.? Don't have one. So it's my computer. White Macbook.

20. Your pet? Webster (duh) - the King of the House

21. Your computer? see # 19. Working with PCs at work confirms to me almost daily how much I love my mac.

22. Your mood? improving.

23. Missing someone? my mom- I wish she'd come back from crazy land. And my family who's so far away. I'm about to miss Ranger Man, but I have a few days before that happens!

24. Your car? Finally I got one! I love air conditioning in cars!

25. Something you're not wearing? a bra? is that tmi?

26. Favorite store? hm. The Loopy Ewe? haha. no. Seriously.

27. Your Summer? Has lasted FOREVER! come on cold weather, I'm ready for you!

28. Love someone? Of course. And we both deserve it!

29. Your favorite color? well green. But I can't wear green, so blue. but I like green better.

30. When is the last time you laughed? not today. Probably yesterday.

31. Last time you cried? Last weekend, I think. And it was a doozy. But I think I'm feeling better now.

I'm supposed to tag people. I'm going to be a terrible person and not tag anyone specifically- please feel free to consider this your tag... I had a wicked witch of the west day and I don't know how much more telling people to do things I can handle. No more Guilt!

Disclaimer: I apologize if the lemon drop has led to even more typo-s than usual. I do love lemon drops though, they're so yummy!

The Wicked Witch

I'm a jerk.

I made a student cry this afternoon! I'm not even a teacher...

I feel like a jerk. When I used to babysit eons ago, one of my kids called me the "wicked witch of the west." Today I feel like that title would apply again.

I don't think that I was overly harsh- merely realistic, and she deserved to hear what I told her, but at the same time... crying? really?

But then, I found out also that two of the kids that I used to coach have stuck with climbing and have made it to Nationals- that is awesome! One of them, in particular, was the reason that I loved coaching climbing, it allowed the inner-city kids that didn't have much else to look forward to a vision and a purpose and something to be truly good at. I am so happy for them. I obviously don't take any of the credit, I just taught them a very, very little- my colleague, ~M~, has apparently continued to carry the torch and do amazing work. That made me feel a little better, but I still feel like a jerk.

this and that

correction: *now* I am officially registered for my final classes on the Island. There was one class that I was waiting to see if I could take it as a distance study and I heard back from the prof yesterday that I can! It's a class that actually relates to my thesis, so I'm pretty excited about that. It's an amazing prof that I've had before- but even without the added work that comes with a distance study his class last spring was hands down the most intense and reading/writing heavy class I've taken as a grad student. And there will be more writing as I have to make up for not being in class for discussion, so it should be kind of crazy. I was hoping to get some work done on the thesis during Spring semester, but I'm not sure how feasible that is now. And I peeked at the syllabus for my winter class... bad idea. bad bad idea. lots and lots of reading about one topic all crammed into those four little weeks.

It hit me two days ago that, very soon, Ranger Man will be gone again and that means that everything that has been great about the last almost-five weeks will be gone again. He's not going to be gone gone yet- although that's certainly coming shortly- and although he'll be much closer physically than the times he's been at Super Secret Army Land etc, he'll have much less communication abilities. Hopefully he'll get to come home for Thanksgiving?

Sigh, Webster and I are about to be on our own again... At least I've got that cat!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

not the end, not the beginning

I'm officially registered for my last two classes at my school on the Island- and one is the class that they make you register so you can actually PAY them for the pleasure of writing a master's thesis. Awesome. So technically, all that's left is one class over the short winter term and then my thesis. Of course I'm a glutton for punishment and I'm trying to work out a deal to also take a class in the spring, but that would just be icing on the cake and it would actually help with my thesis.

I feel like I should have had some sort of bittersweet moment when I hit the "Submit" button and actually registered for the last time at the school on the Island. Like there should have been some sort of relief, or apprehension, or some sort of feeling at all. But it's not really an end (and not just because there's still a thesis to write), because I'm not done with school, and it's not the beginning of something, because I'm most of the way done with my first Master's degree... it just feels like the middle.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Someone else's words

Scott Adams (the artist behind Dilbert) very nicely summed up the misgivings I have about the outcome of this election, through humor. You can read it here.

To clarify my position (and none of this is earth-shattering): While I'm not quite so doomsday-ist to suggest that the entire country will collapse (although I'm not saying it's absolutely not a possibility), the amount of hurt and disappointment across the country is going to be immense. And because of the record number of voters, I think that it will be even bigger than the 2000 election as far as dividing the country. As a political scientist (which I hate that I am that, I really do... but alas, an interdisciplinary MA will do that to you!) I am incredibly interested to see how (or not) a new administration can deal with the disappointment and mistrust.

Voting and such


Friday, obviously, not today... I spent almost two hours in line for early voting. I'm not sure what to make of all of these insanely high predictions for voter turn-out. I know that 80% voting shouldn't be insanely high, that people should want to have a say in the governance of their own lives, but it still seems pretty high. It also seems really high considering that it's mostly likely not going to be a landslide either way, which means that a lot of people are going to be disappointed with the results.

While you wait for tomorrow, check out Hulu's collection of Historic Campaign Ads.

Oh, and how cool is it that there's a peach on my sticker?

Sunday, November 2, 2008

This might be a food blog now...

As promised, Monday night's dinner...

IMG_0069 IMG_0067

Fettuccine Alfredo with (my favorite) broccoli. He even warmed the plates with hot water before putting the food in them- he remembered to pour the water back out of mine, but kind of forgot for his, so he had soupy Alfredo.

So that's the reason that I didn't make it to knitting group on Monday- I had yummy food waiting for me. It's not like I'm going to have yummy food waiting for me for too much longer, so I'm taking advantage of it now, while I can!

I just realized that I thought I finally stopped trying to sleep this morning at 4:30, which would make it close to five now, which is almost time that I would wake up if it wasn't the weekend... but it's daylight savings time. It's not even four yet. I'm going to have to figure out how to get back to sleep. There wasn't any daylight savings on the Island, so I'm kind of out of practice with the whole screwing with the internal clock thing... darn.

I think we got pictures of last night's dinner also- a Pork Loin Roast that handily eclipsed the Kraft mac and cheese I poured out of a box for lunch... What am I going to do when he's gone again? I'll have to come up with my own stuff to blog about!

Saturday, November 1, 2008


I didn't exactly grow up in the boonies, but I didn't grow up in the middle of a city either. In order to go trick-or-treating we had to actually get in the car and go somewhere- the mall when I was little, or a friend's neighborhood once I started school. So I never, ever got to have the experience of trick-or-treaters coming to the door. I thought that last year, on the Island I would have some- there were approximately six. But I was nervous the whole time about being all alone in my house opening the door to strangers (thanks for leaving me all by myself, roomies!)

So this was my year- I was so excited! Ranger Man was going to be here and there are small children living nearby, so I started talking about the trick-or-treaters and getting candy for them months ago. We talked about getting a pumpkin (and roasting the seeds, I love roasted pumpkin seeds!), but in the long run, we still don't have a dining room table or any place really suitable for carving a pumpkin, nor are we really home and not racked out in bed because we're exhausted long enough to do the carving. So we gave up on the pumpkin idea. I thought.

I got home yesterday and Ranger Man was sitting in the middle of the kitchen floor (which was covered in newspaper), carving a pumpkin! It's the cutest, most lopsided Charlie Brown Christmas Tree type of pumpkin I've ever seen, and I love it. Here are some pics:

IMG_0013 IMG_0014


Yay for pumpkins! what a fun surprise! And yes, our kitchen counter really is that messy. You can actually see knitting in one of those pictures- I've got a UFO stashed in the kitchen....

We had a few trick-or-treaters, and we have a ton of candy left over so it was a win-win night!

I hope everyone else had a great Halloween!