Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Wee Bit Wednesday

{one} how tall are you?
5'3".  I'm short, and I like it mostly.

{two} besides bills, what do you spend most of your money on?
Skyline and books.  It's a sad life, but someone's gotta do it.
{three} what are your three favorite websites?
Blogger, Yahoo, and probably which is this ultimately awesome do-it-yourself furniture building site.
{four} what brand of tennis shoes do you prefer?
I don't have one, but Reeboks and Sketchers are pretty nice.
{five} what food can you absolutely not stand to eat?
Anything spicy.  No way.

{six} How many pairs of jeans do you own?
4- 3 that fit and look nice, and 1 that look horrible but are covered in paint and count as my "work jeans"
{seven} if you could have any job, what would it be?
If I could have any job I would stay at home and not have any to be honest.
{eight} have you ever ridden in an ambulance?
My dad was an EMT, so riding to school in an ambulance was common.  I also got hit in the face with a baseball bat once.  Knocked out, placed on a backboard, rode in an ambulance, the works.
{nine} how many pillows do you sleep with?
2- Mine and Mike's.  He works nights, people.  No, I don't take it from him!
{ten} on a scale of 1-5, how organized are you?
5.  I love organization.
And since I forgot to post last week's-
{one} name one thing you worry about running out of.
Gas.  I push it to the last minute because I hate taking the time to pump gas.

{two} what is your favorite pizza topping?
Ham and Pineapple

{three} what is your favorite harrison ford movie?
6 Days, 7 Nights or maybe Sabrina.  Air Force One was pretty good too.

{four} apple juice or orange juice?
orange juice.

{five} what’s your favorite thing to do on a sunday afternoon?

{six} what is the wallpaper on your cellphone of?
A piece of sheet metal with a heart on it

{seven} do you have a favorite tv commercial?
No.  They are all pretty dumb.

{eight} what is the weirdest thing you’ve ever eaten?
I don't eat weird things.  Although some would consider deer meat, squirrel, or frog legs to be weird I guess.  It's all part of living on a farm.

{nine} what is one piece of clothing you can’t live without?
Jeans.  Gotta have my jeans.

{ten} if you were a character from “lost”, who would you be?
I don't watch Lost.

Out with the Old?

I'm not really sure where to begin with this.  How about a quick "about me".

I grew up on a farm in a small town.  We had maybe 2,000 residents.  My high school might have had 400 kids in it.  My graduating class would have been around 95, maybe.  Now, not to be overly critical, but my education while in this small town left something to be desired.  I was at the head of my class (I would have been valedictorian), but when I moved to a bigger city school, with lots more kids and programs and opportunities, I found that I was majorly behind.

Enter facebook.  While most of my friends on facebook are from more recent encounters, such as college and beyond, I still keep in touch with high school friends.

Unfortunately, some of them aren't what I'd call "friends" any more.  There have been things done and said in the past, and honestly I'm a little surprised THEY haven't gotten rid of me because of, heaven forbid, my inter-racial marriage.  (I do in fact know at least 2 or 3 of them are absolutely 100% against this).  Anywho.  Friends who aren't friends.  Yeah, but we were at one time, right?

But now that we're adults things are different.  We disagree.  Mainly on politics. I KNOW!  You don't have to tell me "you should just not discuss politics" or "Well, they are entitled to their opinions".  I understand.  I'm friends with a lot of people who disagree with me on politics, actually.  Including one of my closest friends.  We either agree to disagree and not discuss it at all, or we choose to have a wonderful, respectful debate.  It's quite fun, actually, and it keeps me up-to-date.

But other friends, specifically those who are less educated and from my old town, are less than nice.  They post things that are actually insulting to me, claim things like "Liberals don't support the military".  They call names and spread hate.  And as much as I would like to argue with them, you just can't argue with people who just refuse to accept even basic fact.  They hear things, but don't check the facts.  Then they are disgusted with something taken so out of context it's unbelievable.  These are the types of things I see.

Now, please don't think I'm being judgmental.  I'm really not.  I've tried.  I've tried reasoning, and even ignoring.  But I find that every day they find ways to bother me.  And I'm not judging their lack of education.  I do see it as a reason, though, and I think it's really sad.  But what can I do?

I want to know about their babies (3 on the way, with others growing up).  I want to hear about their family (2 of them are in Afghanistan).  I want to stay in touch.  But I just can't take it. 

So what would you do?  Do you remove the old and move on?  Do you say something?  Even though they have the right to say whatever they want (and I don't think it would go over well)?  Or do you just grit your teeth and deal with it.  I just can't decide.  I love these people, and it breaks my heart that they can be so negative without knowing the facts or even trying to know the facts (seriously... facts.  Not opinions or even projections or estimates.  Plain and simple, proven facts.)

Advice requested.  Please.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Parenthood and my liberal "young parent" ideas

The title is my own.  No one has criticized my ideas.  Mainly because I'm not a parent yet.

I love love love the show Parenthood.  It's a lot of drama, but it's the drama of real life situations, I think.  It's interesting.

So the show has a website (of course) and on that website each week it posts a poll of "hot topics" from the show (because of course... no one agrees on how to parent appropriately).

I have found that I disagree with the majority of viewers on a very very regular basis.

I'm a little surprised by that.  Mainly because of lying, it seems.  Is it ok to lie to your child (who is autistic, but doesn't know it) about going to a support group for parents of autistic children?  Yes.  I think so.  He doesn't realize he's different.  Why point it out when the doctor said he's not ready to know?

The world disagrees with me.

Is it ok to lie to the principal of a nice elementary school (tell him you, the parents, are married when, in fact, you are not) in order to get in?  No.  I don't think so.  Besides, he'd probably find out the truth later anyways.

The world disagrees with me again.

Should you steal Halloween candy from your child?  Yeah.  They don't need all that sugar.  Neither do you, though.  And I'm not talking "gobble it all up" stealing.  I'm talking a piece or two here or there.

Again, the world disagrees with me.

Do you watch the show?  I'm so curious to see what you think of it, and of the hot topics!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Health Insurance Dilemma Solved

To see part 1 of this post, simply go here.

So where were we?  Oh yes.

The dilemma was the group plans at work don't match our needs or financial means.  BUT we can't switch to an individual plan because what if our situation were to change in 9 months (because it seriously most likely... will)?

Then my mother, the genius, had one of her brilliant ideas that for some reason I didn't think of.  Not sure why, because once I saw it, it made perfect sense!

I will get a plan for myself through work.  And only for myself.  It's HSA eligible, so I can start that up as well.  And then, for Mike, we will get him his very own individual plan (because obviously he won't be getting pregnant).  And sadly, Mike's plan is better than mine (by a lot.  His deductible is half of mine with all the other benefits remaining the same) and it's only $3 more per month than what I will pay for mine.

So problem solved.  We don't have a crazy $6,000 deductible and we are only spending $3 more per month.  And, since I'm not changing plans, there is no worry about a "what if" situation- it's covered.  Plus, since Mike's plan is HSA eligible too (Health Savings Account for those who aren't up on those things), we can both use my HSA.  Simple.  Affordable.  Nicely covered.

Yay.  Now we can go hurt ourselves without the worry of not knowing what's covered/what's not.  And if YOU have any questions, by all means.  I can answer them.  I probably know health insurance policies better than some who sell them.  No joke. 

**Insert "I can't wait for the Healthcare Reform Act to fully come into play" statement.  Pregnancy as a pre-existing condition?  That's just shitty. (And we'd qualify for a credit (I think)!)"

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The big fat stinking thing called Health


Health insurance.  Stinks.  Hard.  Core.

So my company's open enrollment for health insurance is going on, and our plans start Feb 1.  

Do you remember the dreaded first for us?  Or maybe the awful summer we had?  Yeah we have learned a LOT about health insurance in the last 8 months ish.

So I found out, after learning the hard way, that the insurance plan I picked (I had 3 choices) really did not match our needs.  AT ALL.  It was bad.  Real bad.

And it was so sad, because I think if I put a little more thought into it, and had taken it seriously, I could have figured this out when I chose the insurance... And we wouldn't have had to face the financial repercussions that we unfortunately had to deal with.

We survived, by the way.  But think of all the things we could have done with the extra money we would have saved!

Anyways.  So we are in open enrollment, and Mike and I have decided we HAVE to switch insurance.  But there's a glitch.  There is a really nice HSA choice.  If you're an individual.  For a family, it's cheap, but it would really hurt you financially if you have medical needs up around 5,000 to 6,000.  

So I was frustrated, and I was a little unsure of what to do.  We had looked at individual plans outside of what my job offers.  But the maternity clauses wouldn't go into effect for 9 months.  What if... ya know?

To be continued...

Monday, January 17, 2011

Menu Monday- Picky Eaters

Dear future children- please be like your father and eat everything.

I don't deal with picky eaters well.  It's frustrating. 

My mom is a picky eater.  And when I say picky I don't mean to a huge extreme.  Just mainly vegetables.  Green vegetables.  And we put vegetables in pretty much everything we cook.

So naturally, when she stays with us (which is twice a week- she commutes to work, so it helps her out), dinner is a little bit of a challenge.  There are a few meals that I make that she likes.  But not a lot.  So I plan it all out.  And then Mr. Snow comes along and changes her schedule.  Now it's Monday, she's staying with us tonight, and the pot pie or beef stroganoff I had planned for when she was coming are frozen solid.


I guess I'll make the dinner tonight and throw the veggies in after she gets her portion?  I think that'll work.  I'm not really good at this "adjusting" yet.  How do you all do it?  I don't want her to feel she has to get her own food, and I don't want her to feel bad because we have to change our menu.  How do you balance things?

Anyways, here's the menu

Monday- Chicken Alfredo
Tuesday- Spaghetti
Wednesday- Maple Chicken
Thursday- Beef Stroganoff
Friday- Pot Pie
Saturday breakfast- Eggs and Biscuits
Saturday dinner- Eating out! (We still have 1 more giftcard from Xmas)
Sunday breakfast- Pancakes?
Sunday dinner- Maple Glazed Chicken

I had planned on packing Chili and cornbread for my lunch this week.  However, I used an old stockpot for the chili (I had made a double batch) and it was too thin of a pot- it burnt the chili.  I froze it anyways hoping it would be fine if I didn't scrape the bottom... But it tastes burnt.  I couldn't even eat it.  How awful to waste so much chili! (A double batch, people...)  So now I have a dilemma- do I go to the store and buy ingredients to make the chili again?  Or do I just buy cheap-y soup for lunch?  I can't decide.

Link up, folks!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Awakened: House of Night Book 8

This was just recently published.  Being the fan that I am of the House of Night story line I obviously rushed out to buy it.

I have read all 7 books previous to this.  Most within the same week.  I won't lie, the writing isn't the best at times, but the story!  It's a guilty pleasure of mine.  My literature friends would probably skin me for reading stuff like this, but of all the books I've read lately, I was more absorbed in this one than any of the classics.  Hands down.

The back of the book:

"Exonerated by the Vampyre High Council and returned to her position of High Priestess at Tulsa's House of Night, Neferet has sworn vengeance on Zoey.  Dominion over Kalona is only one of the weapons she plans to use against Z.  But Zoey has found sanctuary on the Isle of Skye and is being groomed by Queen Sgiach to take over for her there.  Being queen would be cool, wouldn't it?  Why should she return to Tulsa?  After losing her human consort, Heath, she will never be the same- and her relationship with her super-hot warrior, Stark, may never be the same either.

And what about Stevie Rae and Rephaim?  The Raven Mocker refuses to be used against Stevie Rae, but what choice does he have when no one in the entire world, including Zoey, would be okay with their relationship?  Does he betray his father or his heart?

In the pulse-pounding eighth book in the bestselling House of Night series, how far will the bonds of friendship stretch and how strong are the ties that bind one girl's heart?"

The bibliography:

Cast, Kristin and P. C. Cast.  Awakened.  New York: St Martin's Press, 2010

You can find it here for a lot cheaper than I paid for it, or visit your local library (support the libraries!)

Total pages for this book: 290

Plus unrelated textbook pages: 45

Total pages for 2011 so far: 686
Remaining pages: 10,314

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Wee Bit of Me Wednesday

{one} have you ever been on tv?
Local tv, yes.  In high school I was a member of the varsity bowling team.  It may sound silly, but we were awesome and we were the first girls varsity team to be State Champions.  In any sport!  So we were on the news. Fun!
{two} what was the best movie you saw last year?
I would have to say Despicable Me.  :)

{three} do you sleep with your sheets tucked in or out?
Untucked.  They are just too tight when they are tucked in.

{four} do you cut coupons?
Yes, but not a lot.  I save about $10 a week, though.  That adds up to over $500 a year.

{five} do you ever count your steps when you walk?
If I'm bored.

{six} what sauce do you dip your chicken nuggets in?
Honey.  Plain honey.  It's the best.  Been the best since I first discovered it was good on both nuggets and french fries.

{seven} do you have any magazine subscriptions?
I got a free US subscription once, and although it ran out in November they still keep sending it to me.  Weirdos.

{eight} when was the last time you wrote a letter on paper?
March of 2008.  It was addressed to my dad.

{nine} what’s your favorite fruit pie?
Banana Pudding.  That counts, right?

{ten} black olives or green olives?
Neither.  Gross.

100 posts?

Today is my 100th post (ok, so 2 of those aren't published yet, but who's that specific?)

I did a bad thing last night.

I introduced my mom to 16 and pregnant, and as luck would have it the show was Leah's (from teen Mom 2) so I have also introduced her to Teen Mom 2.  I admit I really hate the show.  While I enjoy 16 and pregnant because it has a purpose and serves that purpose well, I think Teen Mom just exploits the problem and really just makes it worse by saying "you're a teen mom!  let's make you famous for screwing up!". 

But none the less, even though my mom was extremely irritated with how immature some of these girls were, she was hooked.  That motherly instinct kicked in (which I swear is the only reason we love shows like these) and sure enough she wanted to see what happens to these girls.

It's officially a guilty pleasure, I think.

Monday, January 10, 2011

So I have no menu today.  I don't know what we're eating this week, because quite frankly, once you freezer cook you don't really look at the menu so much.  I know tonight is leftovers of Benihana's (sans Benihana.  It was delicious).  I think I have maple chicken on the menu, and I know there are shredded chicken sandwiches and tacos.  Other than that?  Who knows!  So I'm not posting a menu this week.

But today!  Today I start classes, officially.  Yeah, I already watched the intro and did the first 4 tasks for my one class that starts today.  But I'm sure he'll post a lecture soon and then I'll have homework, and maybe I should consider checking to see if I have school supplies?  Because I haven't yet.  I have the book, though.  And 2 chapters to read this week.

At least I can count the textbook reading assignments towards my 11k for 2011, right?

Wish me luck!  I just might need it.

Friday, January 7, 2011


I decided to start the 11k challenge for 2011 with this:

It was a Christmas present from my mom.  One that I had asked for.

The back of the book:

"Ian McEwan's symphonic novel of love and war, childhood and class, guilt and forgiveness combines all the satisfaction of a superb narrative with the provocation we have come to expect from this master of English prose.

On a summer day in 1935, thirteen-year-old Briony Tallis witnesses the flirtation between her older sister, Cecilia, and Robbie Turner, the son of a servant.  But Briony's incomplete grasp of adult motives and her precocious imagination bring about a crime that will change all their lives, a crime whose repercussions Atonement follows through the chaos and carnage of World War II and into the close of the twentieth century"

The bibliography:

McWean, Ian.  Atonement.  New York: Anchor Books, 2003.

You can find it here or at your local library (support the libraries!)

Total pages for this book:  351

Total pages for the year: 351
Remaining pages to read: 10,649

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Oh Dear oh dear oh dear

Ladies and gentlemen!

I did it.

I signed up for a race.  And not just any race (oh no, my first can't POSSIBLY be easy!).  It's 2.91 miles of hell.

No, that's literally what the thing says.  Hell.  It's a 2.91 mile run, but that's not all.

We're talking 14 death traps.  Some are fun.  Like climbing the haybales and the junkyard.  Others are still mild- crawl through a dark tunnel, the tire run, the uphill run.  They get a little more difficult when you have to climb a wall, run through a wind storm, trudge through waist deep water.  They get scarier when they make you repel down a cliff, walk a plank, run down a river.  Some are rather difficult, like climbing the nets and crawling under barbed wire.  But the scariest of all???  That terrifying one?

You have to take a leap of faith.  Over a fire pit.

Yeah, about that.

T minus 150 days until I meet my death in a burning blaze.  And the sad part is it's at the end of the race, meaning I will have run almost 2.91 miles and conquered 12 of the other obstacles.  All that will be for naught when I go up in smoke.

But it'll be fun!  Right...?   Right?

Yeah.  Totally.

PS- if you are in the area and care to join me on my suicide mission (along with about 5 or 6 of my friends), here's the link.  We run at 9 am on June 5.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Starting off right- Menu Monday- On a Tuesday

Yay for being late on the first week of the year!

Who's ready for 52 Menu Mondays?????????

Ok, so... Me.

This week, the menu (by memory, so be patient)=

Monday- Taco Melts.  They weren't that good.  We'll have to tweek the recipe.
Tuesday- Chili that I forgot to thaw... and cornbread (of course)
Wednesday- Chicken Pot Pie (One of our faves)
Thursday- Pot Roast with potatoes and carrots
Friday- Date night (maybe... Mike works)
Saturday breakfast- Eggs, bacon, and muffins
Saturday dinner- leftovers.  Mike is recording a wedding.
Sunday breakfast- Supposed to be Breakfast burritos, but I didn't like them
Sunday dinner- Benihana style shrimp, rice, and veggies.  :)  Let's hope they turn out!

Lunch for the week- Soup and sandwiches.  It's a good one with lots of variety, and it seems to shrink the waist (which is nice after the holidays).

Ok, so there isn't a lot of variety this week, and I'm not posting any recipes because the ones I like you've seen and the ones I don't, you don't want.  BUT, if Benihana's style goes well I will share that experience!

Link up, folks!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

A Challenge!

I just accepted a challenge to read 11,000 pages this year.  

That's 11 bajilion thousand million pages!!!!!  I don't know if I can do this, but as a student in a MLIS program, I think I'm up for it.

I'll blog my progress.  Promise.  And maybe a picture or two.

Let's see how I do, shall we?  Any interesting reads on your list?  I have a hefty few on my list.  Atonement will be the first.  I just finished The Five People You Meet in Heaven.  Seriously, you should read it.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

For 2011

I'm not normally a person to make New Year's Resolutions, because quite frankly we usually don't keep them.  BUT.  This past year I noticed that I was just sorta going through life and getting really comfortable with routine and my every day life.  (read: boring).  SO this year I have 2 resolutions: to live life with more purpose, and to leave my comfort zone more often!

For example.  I plan on signing up for the Warrior Dash today.  

Also on the list this year?

Goals for us: 

Mike wants a full time job.  He's expecting a call for an interview in the next week.
I want to get a lot of grad school in (I start in 9 days).
Run the Warrior Dash (and some other 5k races).
Attend a wedding!  My brother will have a May wedding.  :)

Goals for the house:

We need to cut down a tree... Sadly...
If Mike gets that nice full time job we just might get new windows!
I want to re-do the master bedroom and the project room.  We're thinking natural earthy tones in the bedroom and I like the idea of bright colors for the project room (since later it will eventually be a baby's room).
Hang a clothes line!  We have a huge nice backyard.  Time to make use of it!
Landscape- I want a garden in the front yard, and I hate our bushes!

Project list- 

Window treatments for the bedroom
Bottle Chandelier
Laundry Organizer
Sewing Cart
Message Center at the door (Can't decide which one I like best)
Knit several projects and open an Etsy shop???  Or maybe just get my Christmas gifts done early.  We'll see!

Happy 2011 y'all!

Winding Up 2010

2010 leaves much to be desired, to be very honest.  Personally I can say I have detested this horrible year, and I can't wait for it to be over.  But I must admit- there has been a lot of growing and a lot of learning who my (and my husband's) true character is.

Here's a quick recap of the year, bloggy-wise and non-bloggy-wise.

January- We moved into our house!!!!!

February- Mike was unfortunately transferred from his "temporary" full time position to a "permanent" part time position.  Blah, but I have to say it was expected.  Either way it kind of put a damper on our economics.

March- A friend of mine actually moved in with us.  Technically.  She'd actually been living with us since January, but it was only temporary... until it became permanent.

April- I started my blog and told you all about our Wedded Bliss.  I also learned that diamonds can indeed break.

May- I told you about our Mothers Day and then about learning to use Iphoto.

June- I told you our awesome news about making new traditions.  I also discovered that I detest translating, but I love libraries.

July- I was mostly sick.  But I learned I could endure several weeks of constant nausea.

August-  I unfortunately shared the bad news.  And then I lost my Grandpa.  August is a really bad month in our family.  But I learned my own strength, and that when needed I can survive just about anything.

September-  I shared the things that made me happy.  I discovered that getting away is not the same as running away.  I witnessed the Running of the Weiners.  I described Football in our house.  And we remodeled our beautiful office.

October-  I shared important shit- like what the freak are Fast Flats.  And how to budget your money.  And that thing about loving myself, which I indeed think I have learned.  I also applied for Graduate school.

November-  I began freezer cooking.  Which I love, by the way.  I also confessed my desperate need for a dayplanner.  Oh, and did I mention?  I made a freakin' turkey!!!!!!!  

December- Mike turned a quarter of a century, and I am finally able to say that I have found what makes me happy.  Oh, and I have registered for my first semester of grad school.  :)

And by the power vested in me, and speaking for several others, I say "Goodbye 2010!!!! We've learned our lessons.  Now it's time to move on.  May we never see the likes of you again!"