Thursday, August 27, 2009

I was nauseous and tingly all over. I was either in love or I had smallpox.

Welcome to your early Friday blog! We are heading to a cabin in middle TN for a weekend getaway to celebrate our 6th wedding anniversary, hence the early blog post.

We spent our actual anniversary going to the church house (that’s what my grandparents call it) & eating a 5-star lunch at Quiznos. After that, Ben did what any good husband would do & took me to a chick flick (The Time Traveler’s Wife). The movie was great & we finished the evening with an awesome meal at Old Venice!

This weekend will be Ben’s ideal vacation - going to a cabin in the middle of nowhere. Even though it won’t include the beach or pina coladas like our past 2 anniversary trips, I am really excited about hiking through waterfalls & just being together!

The Absent-Minded Professor
On Monday I came home to Ben giving our yard “the works”, but little did I know that it was not entirely by choice. He had locked himself out of the house a couple of hours before & had to wait until I got home to let him back in.

Later this week he thought he had locked himself out again. His first thought was to turn into The Hulk & break down the back door because he had to be at work in 45 min, but instead he went around to the front in a hurry just to make sure it wasn’t unlocked. It was & so he proceeded to jump in the shower & get ready for work.

The funny thing would have been if he HAD of broken down the back door & walked through the house just to see the front door wide open. Oh, & when he came out to his truck Cali was hanging out in the front yard because he had unknowingly left the side gate open. Good times!

Lately we have really been getting into watching TV shows on DVD instead of in real time. We’ve watched the first season of 24, In Treatment, Arrested Development & this weekend hope to finish The Black Donnellys. It’s nice being able to pace yourself, but also having the power of knowing that you can watch the next episode whenever you want - great idea TV people! Anyone have a TV series suggestion that is a must-watch?

On that note, I must finish up the work day so that in a few hours I can do my happy dance on the way out of prison…I mean my office. Happy weekend before Labor Day weekend everyone!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Real Men...

On my way to work today, I saw a new huge billboard. In bold, solid letters it said, “Real Men Don’t Hit Women.”

I hate this form of public condemnation. It is completely based on shame and humiliation. Does anyone honestly think the way to reach men who hit women is to humiliate them and challenge their manhood? Perhaps thus is the reason they are abusers in the first place. If you admit to hitting a woman you are admitting to not being a real man, driving you into even more shame. It only leads to the perpetuation of a shame/abuse cycle. I feel ashamed, I deal with that shame through abuse, I feel ashamed again, I abuse to deal with it, etc. There’s little way out. MY OPINION is that for many abusers, there is a strong sense of shame, but the abuser has not learned how to handle shame, except to take it out on those around them.

Men who hit women are responsible for their actions. It is wrong. My point is shame and humiliation is the worst response. Where is the offer of help in this? Where is the grace in this for the ashamed, emotionally unstable abuser? My belief is that an abuser can’t change without a show of compassion, and you CAN extend compassion with accountability and responsibility.

Oh, and don’t you ever forget, “REAL men love Jesus.” Ugh…give me a break!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Society tells us we're civilized, but the truth is we are animals.

According to this pic, Cali & I share the same opinion about college football season being right around the corner. Is it Friday already (kidding)? Where have all the cowboys & 4-day work weeks gone?

Family Weekend
We spent last weekend in MO with my family & had such a good time! My brother & sis-in-law came from OK & my grandparents came up on Sat to help me eat bday cake. It was too short, but we were able to squeeze in coffee with one of my favorite cousins I hadn’t seen in a long time. Oh, & we did get DQ blizzards on the way there & back & got some good ole’ Spfld cashew chicken.

According to Ben, my organizational “sickness” has reached an all-time low. I was shopping at Target the other day & was searching for some pacifiers that were on a friend’s baby registry. Apparently, there are many different types of pacifiers & they were all mixed up on the wrong hangers. I figured out that I could match the UPC from the back of the package to the one on the hanger, so I proceeded to take them all down & spent the next 20 minutes reorganizing them perfectly. I would secretly love for someone to pay me to do this kind of thing, but it hasn’t happened yet.

A friend of mine recently made a FB note about a few of her “quirks” & it got me thinking about some of mine: spacing the shampoo/body wash bottles equally apart & facing the same way in the shower, setting my alarm for random, odd-numbered times (i.e. 5:43, 6:07), always putting the volume # on the TV to an odd number & shutting the gas off on the stove because I’m convinced we will die of gas poisoning just to name a few.

Charades Anyone?
“Hey, our friend Kayci is being induced in the hospital tomorrow.” Ben
(Monica miming while gargling with mouthwash)
“You are pregnant with the spawn of Satan?” Ben
(after recovering from almost spewing the mouthwash) “No! We should get them a stuffed bunny from Party City.” Monica
Apparently, the bunny ears were confused for the devil ...very common mistake in charades I’m sure.

Ben & I will be celebrating 6 amazing years of marital bliss this Sun! Our life together has been one big adventure so far & we still love (& like) each other a lot! We will be taking off to a beautiful place in middle TN next weekend to celebrate & I can’t wait! Alright, that’s all I can muster up for your Friday afternoon blog entertainment. Happy almost weekend everyone!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Tween Blog and Resentment

I am now considering my blogs as tween blogs because they come tween Monica’s fun Friday blogs. After you read this one, you’ll need a good Friday blog! I’ve been thinking a lot about resentment lately and would like to share a story.

One day in chapel at OC a Dean of some sort from the Pepperdine Law School led some talk that went way over my head. At the end he said he would be in the Student Center on campus that afternoon for anyone interested in talking about the school. I was considering law school as an option at that point in my schooling, so I stopped by his little table that afternoon.

After I initiated the conversation, I finally asked him, “So how much does it cost a year to go to Pepperdine Law School?” He then responded with a straight face, “If you have to ask, you can’t afford it.” No change of expression on his part, even though I briefly giggled because I thought it was a joke. When I finally realized he was being pompous and smug, I felt humiliated.

All I could think about for days was ripping the bow tie off his neck and feeding it to him as I shoved it down his throat. I thought, “I’ll show him…I’ll go to law school and show up in his class and be the best student ever.”  However, I knew inside that he would not even remember me and I would have felt terribly unfulfilled, which made me even more frustrated.

That man owned me and my thoughts for a long while, which is the best definition I’ve heard of resentment—to resent someone is to be owned by them. I was ready to do anything I could to show him up, to humiliate him, to beat the arrogance out of him. He owned me for several years. How could his one remark and his stupid bow tie cause so much humiliation and hate in me? I can come up with no better answer than I let him control me. I’m frustrated I let him own me for so long, but I have since let it go. Now on the other side of it, I can see how I let him influence and control me and how I don’t want anybody like that to have any ownership over me.

Who owns you right now? I have to admit I have some shareholders.

Friday, August 14, 2009

On the run from Johnny Law... ain't no trip to Cleveland.

It’s Aloha Friday, no work till Monday (insert happy Friday dance)...the Friday song is what I miss most about listening to the radio in the mornings instead of opting for the iPod in our bathroom.

The Great Outdoors
Last weekend we went camping with our Ireland team in Texarkana. When we stepped out of the car at the campsite Fri night, our glasses immediately fogged up from the humidity…and it only got better from there. Besides the heat, there were ants, crickets, bugs & mosquitoes everywhere (including our tent) & we got little to no sleep both nights. Regardless, we had a blast & got to spend Sat out on the lake kayaking & it was an amazing bonding experience sharing communion around the campfire Sun morning!

He Says the Sweetest Things
“Do my eyes look tired?” Monica
“No, your face does.” Ben
This was a conversation we had earlier this week after a long weekend which resulted in uncontrollable sleepy-type laughter.

“Accept Me, Accept Me, Accept Me!”
This was the phrase I belted out in my sleep one night this week, which was proceeded by me sitting straight up in bed & then lying back down. Now, even though this was probably a dream come true (no pun intended) for a therapist to do some major subconscious dream interpretation, it freaked Ben out just as my sleep talking always does. He got me back though because that same night the pillow monster reared his ugly head & I was barely able to pull my pillow out from his death grip.

Reality TV at its Finest
Normally I don’t blog about specific TV shows, but I must give props to Big Brother for actually giving me butterflies from anticipation last night while watching the show! I won’t bore you with the details in case you don’t watch this guilty pleasure, but I will say that America voted to give one of the contestants a special power which was used (these powers are usually never used so as not to ruffle too many feathers) & it changed the game & it was AWESOME! Ben likes to scoff at my love of reality TV, but I throw it back in his face because technically all live sports are “reality TV” - am I right ladies?

Who’s Patty?
So, just as people “google” themselves I decided to “white page” ourselves via the WhitePages app I have on my iPhone just for fun. Ben’s name & our address came up & it even said “Age: 25-29” which is a little scary that the internet gods know that. Then came the kicker…“Household: Monica, Patty” Who is this Patty & why isn’t she paying her half of the mortgage & bills?

Well friends, we’re off on another road trip extravaganza to the Show-Me state to celebrate my belated bday w/ the fam! Cali is VERY excited to finally get to come this time & not be left at home like a red-headed stepchild. We are already anticipating our traditional blizzard stop at Dairy Queen & hopefully some yummy Springfield cashew chicken. Have a great weekend everyone!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Cell Phone Delays

As I was in line at Sam’s today, a lady was on her cell phone and trying to pay at the same time and it definitely cost me some precious time that I could have been watching ESPN2. My thought was this: “Forget the delay in reaction time cell phones cause drivers, the real issue is the delay cell phones cause in making a simple store transaction.” It especially adds up if you are in a long line. I’ve been guilty a time or two as well. I think we should start making babies with three arms so when they are older they can talk on their cell phones and find their debit cards. Hmmph!

Friday, August 7, 2009

The only normal people are the one's you don't know very well.

Oh Friday, how I wish I didn’t live for you to get here week after uneventful work week!

Another Pup Bites the Dust
Ben was in the backyard playing fetch with the pups. He decided to throw the ball up in the air between Cali & Layla, which resulted in one of those slow-mo football tackling scenes that they replay over & over because one of the players got a concussion. Layla ended up with the tennis ball & Cali ended up with a bit tongue & a chunk out of her nose. Ben proceeded to do the “finger eye test” & Cali was fine, but I don’t think we’ll be signing her up for puppy football anytime soon.

Nana Puddin’
So…last weekend our church decided to tack on a banana pudding contest to our annual ice cream social. I made the HUGE mistake of participating - entering a banana pudding contest in the south, what was I thinking?! We called our good friend Justin who lives in FL for his top secret recipe & it turned out amazing! Unfortunately, there were at least 50 other “fancy” banana puddings staring me in the face when we arrived & alas, I didn’t stand a chance.

TV Diet
I have offered to go on a TV diet upon the return of all the new shows this fall because A) It sucks up WAY too much of my time & B) I hate watching shows that Ben won’t watch with me. Desperate Housewives, Brothers & Sisters, Gossip Girl, One Tree Hill, The Bachelor, 90210, Survivor, Grey’s Anatomy & Ghost Whisperer are all on the chopping block. The Big Bang Theory, How I Met Your Mother, LOST, Scrubs, The Office & 30 Rock are still being negotiated. We’ll see how this pans out when we add college football to the mix.

My Office Quote of the Week
“I reckon I shouldn’t ever try to pick up a woman that I can’t PICK UP.” (I am seriously not making this stuff up people.)

Well, let the out of town weekends begin…we’ll be camping in TX this weekend (yes, we’re insane for camping in hot, humid TX in Aug), going to MO next weekend to celebrate my bday w/ the fam & then off to a yet to be determined destination anniversary weekend getaway!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Living to be Something vs. Living not to be Something

I like to ponder on things during the week and let Monica wrap it all up on Fridays with her awesome blog posts. She’s revived the blog and I look forward how she saw the week.

I’ve noticed a big difference between those who live to be something and those who live to not be something. For instance, I had a roommate that was heck-bent on not turning out like his father. He was going to finish college and be a brain surgeon—I’m not sure he finished the first year. So much was focused on not being his dad and he couldn’t focus on being himself. I see it in couples all the time—“I don’t want to be like my dad” or “I’m so afraid she’ll be like her mom.” The couple focuses on not being their parents and have trouble developing into who they want to be. I find that living out of not wanting to be something often gets the opposite result, which is ending up like that something. The anxiety actually brings about what someone is trying to avoid. Its like shaving your head so you don’t start balding. The reason I think this happens is when I am trying hard not to be something and I start to think I am being that way, I get discouraged and reason that I must just be that way (I think this happens on the conscious and unconscious levels). Its related to the “I’m mad but I don’t want to be and that makes me even more mad” scenario.

Then, I notice the people that are living to be something they want to be. I find it refreshing to be around these people because they seem to know what they want and go after it without a second thought. They are not hindered by not wanting to be something and have the freedom to be what they want. I think this is the difference between doing something out of fear and doing something out of freedom. I have found a great point here to dive off into some theological stuff, because this applies to those who are Christians because they want to be with God vs. those who are Christians because they don’t want to go to hell. Its also like OU playing a bowl game to not lose rather than to win.