Thursday, July 30, 2009

A Glimmer of Hope?

So we went to look at townhouses today. Shock of all shock - we found one we really like IN OUR PRICE RANGE! It's downtown, walking distance from places we like to go. It has a lovely, sloping yard in the back. I'm not going to say much more until we put in an offer. It is, however, within the USDA's district! Woo hoo!

I have been tracking my food without limiting too much what I choose to eat. Because of that, it appears that I'm limiting my food intake. I feel good that I haven't been gorging too much. Now the problem is getting more exercise. We'll see how it goes...

Michelle and I will be having a "girl's day" tomorrow, and I'm taking them out for dinner tomorrow night in honor of her recent birthday. We're getting our nails done, which I'm really excited about. *B*'s mom dropped a pamphlet from a local place that is REALLY cheap. She said it was really nice. We've been missing each other's texts, so there aren't any definite plans, but all will fall into place eventually.

I feel so loved! I never knew I had comments on some of my posts! THANK YOU!!!! I feel so encouraged by everyone. The comments also got me to read some of my posts, which motivate me to pick up things I've been slacking on. Momzoo also reignited my quest to find the article on five year journaling - I FOUND IT!!! It was from, and it's called Creating a Five Year Vision. WOO HOO!!!

Things I'm Going to Do Tonight and Tomorrow (in no particular order):
  • Have one heck of a prayer session with the big guy
  • Working on the five year stuff
  • Put laundry away
  • Vacuum bedroom and living room
  • Send info to the new mortgage guy
  • Get nails done
  • Go out for dinner
Things I'm Thankful For (in no particular order):
  • Being off of work
  • Having a place to crash
  • Having a generous family
  • Having a great boyfriend
  • Having a reliable car
  • Life working out in one way or another
  • Finding faith that we'll have our own place one day (hopefully soon!)

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

So It Goes

I've been up and down all day today. This morning *B* and I went to a financial planner, my insurance agent. He pretty much told me we're a little bit screwed when it comes to finding a house. We're going to keep our eyes open, but I don't have to kill myself looking. Again, my dad offered for us to move into his house when he moves down south. I haven't said yes, but I haven't said no either. It really upsets me to think that we could be with his parents for our birthdays, anniversary, Thanksgiving, and worst of all, Christmas.

Last night, I dreamed that I started school already. I had plans ready, but none of the materials for the lessons. We had to go to some kind of gathering (fire drill or assembly), and I wet myself and hoped no one else noticed. I wonder what that means.

One of my favorite shows right now is "You Are What You Eat" on BBC America. I just watched tonight and realized that the majority of the food I ate today was really bad for me and that I need to take better care of myself. So right now I'm chilling out, watching "18 Kids and Counting," planning for living a much less stressful life. All told though, I only ate 2160 calories today, and had 15.9 grams of fiber. For feeling like a pig, I did pretty well!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Catharsis Restrained

I cried today in front of *B*. I think it's only the second time I've done that in as many years, the first when I found out my parents were getting a divorce. I didn't let all out, but it was nice to expend some of the pent up sadness and frustration. I miss our life. I miss our grown-up-ness and coming home to the cat, days of candlelight, movies on the couch. It feels like we'll never get that back. There's been a lot of stress in this house lately. Personality clashes, grumpiness, the strain of new people interrupting a routine. It literally makes me cringe.

I started reading White Oleander by Janet Fitch to get away from everyone. I found myself surprised to get sucked into it. I feel like Astrid, afloat with nothing to anchor me down. I'd come to an interesting place where I didn't want to keep reading, because I knew it will only get worse for her. But I persevered, and I finished the book last night.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Oh So Frustrating

We saw a house today. It was built in 1898, and it's got some gorgeous features (granite counter tops, nice range, etc). But in general, there are a lot of problems. It's killing me to know that we're going to be with *B*'s parents for a lot longer. I'm just so not an extrovert, and I feel I'm always "on." I really wish we could just get a place.

*B* and I decided to eat more healthful foods. Tonight, for dinner, I made baked salmon with lemon juice, squash, and green beans. It was SOOOO good if I do say so myself. To get the salmon, we went to a fresh fish market. It was much smaller than I expected. But we got a fillet of organic salmon. I didn't realize it wasn't deboned! I had to use tongs to pull out every little bone in that 2 lb fillet. It was a lot of work, but totally worth it. This morning, I finished making applesauce, and I made a fruit salad with all the random fruits we had in the fridge.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Oh Wow!

I just watched Alton Brown frost a cake on a record player. How brilliant is that?! I absolutely love that idea. Never mind the fact that it could destroy the record player.

Before that, though, I watched 16 and Pregnant. I have a hard time with that show. Though it is more true than other portrayals of teenage pregnancy, I still think that it somewhat glamorizes that lifestyle. I am thankful, however, that none of the girls shown chose abortion. While I wouldn't go so far to prevent someone from that option, I don't believe in it myself.

It may seem as if I have no life what with all the TV I'm watching. But I've actually gotten a fair amount of planning done for next school year. I've come up with some nifty plans, and organized my lessons far more than I ever have before. I'm actually excited about going back to school to some extent.

We went to see two more houses today. One of them is the most precious house I've ever seen:
If it weren't a one bedroom house with the tiniest kitchen I've ever seen, I would TOTALLY buy it. I'm in love with the area in which it's located. I would gladly drive 45 minutes to work to live in that town. Besides that, we really need to get a new loan officer. We don't even know what our price range is anymore. I'm still pretty leery about getting a house until *B* has a steady job, but what can you do.

I've not been very good about keeping up my prayers. Since losing the house, and coming from school during David Jeremiah's broadcast, it's fallen by the wayside.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Why Can't I Write Anymore?

I used to be really excited to hop onto my laptop and churn out a post. For the last week, I haven't been able to write much of anything.

We submitted our withdrawal of contract today. Once we get our good faith deposit back, we'll never have to think of that house again.

I have bug bites all up my legs and arms from sitting outside on Saturday. I'm going crazy! I just can't stop itching.

I've been reading Loving Frank by Nancy Horan. So far, it's really good. I'm 2/3 of the way through, and I've only had it two days. I'll probably finish it tonight. Tomorrow, I'll give a thorough report.

I'm really hoping to get a jump on my emergency bag tomorrow. The hardest thing I've had a problem getting together - a change of clothes. Should I pack for warm or cold weather? *B* is packing zip-off pants, but I am not so lucky. Tank tops and long sleeve t-shirts perhaps??

Sunday, July 19, 2009

More Ramblings of a Lost Woman

I really don't know what to do. Tomorrow, I will be calling a new real estate agent and sending in the paper that says we give up on the contract. I think we'll be looking at townhomes. I've been looking in Montgomery County, and that's weird for me. I don't know the area at all.

Day 1 of Life Starting Over...Again

I really just wish that this could all be over. It hit me that we are starting COMPLETELY over and that, again, we can't afford any of the houses on the market within an hour of my school. It feels like the world is against young people. *B* can't get a job because he doesn't have enough experience. But he can't get experience until he has a job. I had once remarked that it feels like life is on pause. It no longer feels like that - it now feels like we're watching the menu screen on a DVD in a foreign language. Not only are we not going anywhere, we're not even on the right track to go anywhere.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Bittersweet News

At 9 am, I got a phone call demanding my transcripts and a copy of my diploma. I drove an hour to school, paid for the transcript, and sent it, all hyped up to get finished and close on the house. Soon after, we found out that we were denied for the loan for a third time. This denial means that we will not be getting the house at all. We've decided to live with *B*'s parents for a couple of months until we can afford to move somewhere else. It's both very stress relieving and very stressful to not have a house again.

I went out with my mom, *B*'s mom, and her friend tonight. We all got haircuts and highlights. Then, we went out to Applebee's and got a few drinks. It was a really good time. It wasn't until I fell across some real estate websites that I started to get depressed again. It feels like we'll never get a house.

Thursday, July 16, 2009


I'm not posting right now because we're waiting to hear about the mortgage!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, July 13, 2009

I Love...

...Maryland Public Television. It is my favorite channel. BBC America comes a very, very, very close second. On nights like tonight when I find my curiosity piqued and my intellect challenged, I'm so very glad that there is SOMETHING good on television. Though, I suppose I shouldn't watch too much television. I think it's alright though, because it really does inspire me. It inspires me to cook, to craft, to enjoy life more. It was MPT that showed me the lifestyle of Tasha Tudor, MPT who showed me Bob Ross, MPT who showed me all the little festivals going on in the area. And tonight it is MPT that reminds me that I like history. And I'm a bit of a geek. And I love that.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

A Cold in July

How is it possible to have a cold in July?? Both *B* and I are sick right now, with me being the sicker of the two. My nose is stuffed up and I am so yucky feeling. His allergies are acting up because of the dust here.

I discovered the clothing store Ross today. Oh. My. Gosh. It was awesome! I got so much stuff for work! And the clothes are soooo cute. I got 10 items for $100. And I'm not talking about crappy clothes. These were really nice. I will post pictures.

I feel really bad. I think I freaked out a fellow blogger. I saw these really cute skirts that Momzoo made for her girls. I really like the skirts. I emailed her to ask for the pattern, and promptly the pics of her kids dropped off the web. I really didn't mean any harm. They went back up later, so maybe it wasn't me. I do feel a bit like a stalker though, and for that, I am profoundly sorry.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

You Do What You Must...

...when it comes to your cat. Wicket still has a wicked case of the fleas. I've been combing her for three days in a row, and yesterday I even ventured to give her a bath. I've gotten over 50 fleas in the last 72 hours and countless eggs as well.

First, the bath story: I ran some warm water in the tub. I put the cat in the tub, and the typical freak out started. I held her back toward me, and her claws were flying, scratching at the enamel tub. Her little claw actually hooked a bar of soap and sent it flying. There's a huge gouge out of it! I laughed at her until somehow she spun around and the claws were pointed toward me. My arms are proof of her displeasure. After I got her totally soaked, she calmed down much, much more. She tried to get out, but not nearly as vigorously.

As I was combing fleas off tonight, I had to be creative to keep her near me. We had bought new, catnip-flavored pounce treats. I gave her some treats when she let me comb her. When she ran away, I tossed a trail of treats a la Hansel and Gretel right on back to me. It worked probably three or four times before I decided the few fleas I was getting off of her were not warranting the mass quantity of food.

I'm trying to ignore the mortgage issues this weekend. I will say, however, my ex-landlord keeps ignoring my phone calls and emails. We have mail to get, and we haven't gotten our security deposit yet! I'd even be okay with it if he said I can't do it now, but I'll get it to you. I just don't like being ignored.

I brought my dad's vacuum over when I dropped him off from the airport yesterday. This morning, I went nuts vacuuming the living room. It feels so much better in here. I will clean our bedroom again tomorrow, and try to organize the computer room.

When I brought over the vacuum, I also brought ALL of my mom's canning supplies. I will be learning to can over the next few days.

I was also doing my internet hunt today, and found this interesting article on stocking an inexpensive pantry. I will definitely start looking a little more carefully for deals from now on. I'm not sure, however, how to find all these great deals. I've heard rumor of an internet site that tells you all the best deals. After my canning research, deal hunting will be my next project.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

It's Been a Long Day

Earlier this afternoon, I was steaming mad. I have not been that angry in a very long time. After a very productive morning (I got my homework done four days early, visited with Kimber, and reread some of The Shack), I called my realtor and my mortgage broker. As it turns out, we were denied our loan. This time, we were denied because we had been denied before, even though I got a substantial raise between the two applications. We could have been saved this problem had certain steps been taken to prevent it. I was cursing a lot, blaming it on my realtor and the previous mortgage broker. I was so angry, that I took it to God.

Just about the whole way to school, I talked/prayed out loud to God in my car. I asked him why I deserved this, and a whole myriad of other complaints. Most of all, I asked him for guidance. So I left it at that and went to class, coming out of it much calmer than when I went in. Coming home, I decided I was really hungry and needed to stop off to get food. I knew I shouldn't have been spending money on fast food, but I was hungry. And food is a need. So I stopped at KFC, and wouldn't you know it, they don't have any chicken. I drive off in search of more places to eat.

Then the religious radio program I listen to came on at 8:00. The sermon - determining the difference between wants and needs. Talk about guidance straight from God! The pastor talked about the line of Our Father "give us this day our daily bread." He talked about what we ask for and what we should ask for, labeling wants as needs, and trusting in God. This gave me great hope, and I've decided I'm going to just go one day at a time right now. I will work on my surroundings as to make them more habitable, and stop worrying about what could be or should be or what I think I deserve. We have food (often free food), clothing that is perfectly good (even if I need to learn to get stains out), and a roof over our head (also for free). Our needs are met. Our wants - privacy, varied food, new clothing - really don't matter so much so long as we can function in praising God and performing our roles in society. With this in mind, I will attempt to take a new approach as I soldier on each day.

Oooo, Giveaway!

Mrs. Mordecai over at Be It Ever So Humble is hosting a giveaway of awesomeness! Check it out!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Teacher Thoughts

Today's class was really inspiring. I was just overflowing with ideas for my students. When I got into my car, I wrote down everything I could come up with. I didn't even listen to the radio on the way home, I just reflected on my teaching. It was a really great feeling. I have a rather long list (almost a page) of ideas I've gleaned from the three classes I've taken this summer. I'm hoping this year will be much better than last.

We went to the thrift store today, and we got a lot of fun things. I bought a new purse, *B* got new shorts, together we got a french press coffee maker, and we got his nephew a little plaid skirt that will be a kilt for the renaissance festival! I will definitely be going back there.

I'm having a hard time saving money even though we're living with *B*'s parents. In the past week, we've been to the thrift store, Wal-mart, Chevy's, and random food venues. The worst part - I'm scheduled to go out with friends Thursday and Friday.

I think - I hope - what's going to happen is that the second we get the house, we tighten down. I plan on getting the Sunday paper to clip coupons. We won't be going out to dinner nearly as often, and I won't be stopping random places for junk food. I'm thinking about trying the envelope system, or at least keeping a spending journal. I also want to keep a running tally of how much things cost. I had heard of a scanner than itemizes your receipts, but I can do that myself if I am disciplined enough.

We hopefully have 8-10 more days before we move. That feels like such a long time still. There's so much that can go wrong between then and now. All I can do is wait and pray.

Monday, July 6, 2009

I Feel MUCH Better

Last night, when I finally laid down to sleep, I asked for help with the stressors in my life. I had a long hash out of what I needed and for what I was thankful. I, then, woke up this morning a full 3 hours after I wanted to be up, better than the night before. By mid-afternoon, I was feeling alright. *B* and I had a nice snuggle and a talk about what's bothering me. Now, I'm feeling much better. I'm still working on the God thing. Above all, I think prayer is working well for me. I don't know why, and I don't know how, but it makes me feel better.

I started my summer classes back up, and Gail from work is teaching my class. This development is good because she knows me, but bad if I don't perform well! I think it'll be alright. I get to go in late to school tomorrow, which is nice.

After class today, I went to Borders. I have a coupon for $5 off of any book, but I couldn't find anything that struck my fancy. So I came home and hopped on What Should I Read Next to find something I like. I'll be back at Borders tomorrow, list in tow.

A few months ago, a Real Simple blog got me to thinking about this question: what do I want my life to be like in five years. Since then, I've been creating a collage (albeit from Google images pics) of what I want in my life in five years. Tonight, I've worked it into something that I think fits pretty well. It's definitely a work in progress as it reflects how one's priorities change over time. Even from the time I first started, my priorities have shifted. But here it is, in its unfinished glory:

It's a tad bit blurry, but overall, it demonstrates the major areas of my life that I'd like to develop. From top left, clockwise: having a home, having a family, traveling here and abroad, and cultivating hobbies.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

At the Risk of Sounding Whiney...

I'm really unhappy today. I mean I'm really, really unhappy. It all started when...

I woke up this morning a little grumpy because it was early and I had a late night. Despite all the bug bites up and down my legs, I was good. On the way to my mom's, I even sang a little bit with my radio. I got to Mom's and played with her kitten, Shadow. And off we went to church.

Church. Was. TERRIBLE! The priest barely spoke English. The entire congregation was like a droning mob. There were no insights into how to live one's life. It was, without a doubt, not where I wanted to be. And just like when I was a kid, I got annoyed when my mom enjoyed it. I don't know why, but I did. I was a grouch, but I got through it.

We went to breakfast at Denny's, and I mellowed out after a little while. We had a normal breakfast, and went over to Wal-mart. I was much happier then, and I even picked up some more supplies for my kits.

I played some more with Mom's kitten, then went over to Dad's. I had an alright - even good - time, and got a look at some of the furniture that we are generously receiving when we move. I swung by, picked up some ice cream and food for *B* and his family, and came back "home."

When I got home though, crap hit the fan. I was just hugely grouchy and really didn't want to be around anyone, least of all *B*. He didn't do anything wrong. He's being his normal self. I just wasn't having any of it. I know the catalyst was the awesome post on about how she met her husband the other night.

Here's what I want to know - why am I so worked up about having kids already? Why do I love reading about other people's lives so much? How can I satiate this creative need I have inside when I'm not a creative person? How can I get over the last 10 days in such close quarters with everyone? What am I going to do if the house doesn't go through in time?

Even as I type, I feel constricted and choked. I feel guilty that I want to be alone so much. I can't stop thinking about how nice it was in Florida, and I don't mean the weather.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Productive Day!

Today, I finally bit the bullet and cleaned out my car. It still had pine needles in it from our Christmas tree! Now, it is spic and span, and I know exactly what I need to round out my car kit. Using information from and other random sources, I've collected all the information I need for a full car kit. My emergency car kit includes:


Batteries (AA, AAA, D)



Bungee Cords

Cash ($20)

Change of Clothes


Duct Tape

First Aid Kit


Glass Breaker

Hand Sanitizer

High-Energy Snacks


Jumper Cables

Lug Wrench


Oil (5W-20)


Pocket Knife


Shop Towels

Tire Pressure Gauge

Toilet Paper in Ziploc



Wet Wipes

Windshield Washer Fluid

After cleaning out my car, I took some of the clippings from the grape vine out back, and I wove a wreath out of it. I'm holding off deciding if I like it until it dries out and turns brown.
I also made a really healthy, yummy lunner. I made Mexican chicken wraps, with leftover greens (squash, asparagus, green beans), and leftover peaches. One of these days, I'll get around to taking pictures more often. I also made Fourth of July Potato Salad. I used red, white, and blue potatoes for that touch of holiday festivity.

*B* had a project today that made me very happy! From half a palate he got from work, he fashioned me two mint planters. I will post pics as soon as it's painted. I'm so excited - way to use what we have to fashion something useful (and free)!

I just found out I can use my SD card in my laptop! In honor of this joyous occasion, pictures of the animals!

Ubay - A sweet, old, midget we like to call the "scabby tabby."

Molly - a super sweet german shepherd/boxer mix.

Prunella - She's slightly senile, but not as bitey as she used to be.

Wicket - Can't you just feel the love?!

Friday, July 3, 2009

Night Thoughts

At night, lying in bed when I'm trying to sleep, I have deep thoughts that I want to write about. When I get out of bed to put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard as the case may be), I don't remember any of it. And here I am, trying to put it all back together.

I feel guilty that I didn't ask my parents if they wanted to get together for July 4th. So instead, I asked my mom to go to church with me Sunday, which is something I haven't done outside of school in literally years. She was surprised, but receptive. I'm going to call my dad tomorrow and swing by his house after my mom and I finish up. *B* and I are meeting up with Michelle and Bill next Friday, and I've asked Kimber if she wants to hang out next Thursday. I'm really trying to reconnect with people I've lost touch with.

I feel like I have no purpose during this time off. During the school year, I have purpose out my ears, but not so much now. I'm slowly whittling away at lesson plans I have to create. But that is a VERY slow process that comes in productive spurts. My classes start up again this Monday, which will actually be a welcome change.

We have 12-14 days until we can move into the house. Being under the two week mark is both very exciting and very scary. We've opened so many boxes, and they will all have to be repacked. If anything will fail, it will be soon. I think that I'm afraid of being told we can't move in again or that I've made huge financial mistakes during this waiting period. I've been saving a lot, but spending a fair amount as well.

So far on our 72 hour kits, we have backpacks, emergency blankets, and utility knives. I'm struggling with finding a good first aid kit. What should it have in it? How much is appropriate? I'll be making a new medicine bag for my purse after we move in. At one point, I had pain killers, benedryl, lactaid, dramamine, band aids, and much more in my purse at any given time. But now that a) we've moved and b) my purse has all but fallen apart, I no longer carry it with me. I'd like to go to the thrift shop to see if I can find a new purse. As for my car kit, I'm sure that I could finish it out really quickly if I shop my belongings, but I've been too lazy to do it. Perhaps tomorrow I can take the five minutes I need to do it. I even have an empty crate in which I can put it all somewhere in this house!

For now, I'm just counting the days and trying to enjoy each one as it comes.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Happier Day

Today, I ordered the first of my supplies for my 72-hour kit from the REI outlet. It comes in July 15th, just about when we move into the house. It's really pretty, as shown below, and the biggest I could find.
When I can, I'll be gathering supplies to stock it and my car pack. *B* is really into the idea of self-sufficiency and preparedness, too. We're both very excited to get started.

There is a gorgeous storm outside. The lightning is particularly bright tonight. The power even went out just now. I haven't heard a good summer storm in a long time.

Yesterday, we went to see my mom and her kitten. It really made me nostalgic to be back in the area. I really would love to move back there when I'm more settled in life. I love it because it's open, friendly, and comforting. I miss all the space and the animals. Unfortunately, the main town in the area is really starting to build up, so it will never really be the same when I get back there. But I can always hope.

Mom's kitten, Shadow, when we watched her for a few days.