Sunday, February 27, 2011

Blitzkrieg Update

I survived a week of layoffs at my company. This is round one of more to come. We expect more in June or July. There were many casualties. One of which is one of my two best friends at work. So that was rough. Fortunately, I know she counts on God in life. So once the initial shock wears off, I know she knows he's got her back.

My life is blessed. Not just dodging the layoff bullet. God's just got me feeling very peaceful and blessed. The imperfect me will try to unseat that feeling periodically. Fortunately, God is stronger than my wobbles.

Not much else to report. Very tired. Working each day, waiting to see who gets escorted from the building - it's oddly exhausting.

God rocks.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Valentine's Weekend

I'm having a crap day - emotionally. Physically, it's sunny and gorgeous here. My distaste for Valentine's is attempting to derail me and doing a damned fine job.

This picture by Stacy Reed (lovingly borrowed from She Dreams in Digital) sums up my sentiments for today:

I paid all my bills this morning. I filed my tax return and saw a nice refund amount. But I also screamed at The Ex on the phone earlier when he was almost an hour late to pick up the boys. I think the dark cloud that is attempting to represent my soul at the moment was secretly happy as the minutes ticked beyond the pick up time. Sometimes you just want to be pissed off. Normal, yes. But never good. Because it's not fun to waver between rage and weeping. Certainly not for dainty flowers like myself. Meh.

So I have a day and evening to myself. And most people are busy filling every second of their day with something that's been scheduled or put off for a long time. Many couple friends are doing couply things because it's Valentine's weekend. Good for them. My few single friends already have plans or aren't returning calls. Which is annoying that they can't immediately sense my selfish funk and come pouring out of the walls to cheer me up and coddle my immaturity. What's up with THAT?!

I spent a while pouring back through my past VDay blog posts. The pathetic thing is, this post really isn't being any different than those pouty little diatribes. Holy crap when will I get a grip and just get OVER it? I've never liked VDay. It's a huge waste of money and that is exploited by businesses that make their money exploiting things like this. I don't have the same distaste for Easter and you'd think - as a Jesus loving soap-box climber - I'd be all OVER the bastardization of THAT holiday.

No, this is a particularly selfish dislike. It's one thing to stand with your loved one, agreeing that the holiday is silly and not buying into overpriced flowers, dinners, etc. It's another thing entirely to be single and endure the endless commercial barf spewed from florists, chocolatiers, and diamond merchants. Commercial portrayals of relationships annoy the snot out of me by swinging wildly along the wide spectrum between these two staples:
  1. Dumpy, balding, clueless man unexplainably has a totally hot, smart wife that does everything.
  2. Sensitive, loving (and usually gorgeous) guy says exactly the right thing to the woman in his life to show he TOTALLY gets how lucky he is to have her as he presents some really tacky, yet expensive, diamond encrusted trinket to her.

I barf on both images. And in stead will concentrate on wonderful and realistic couples in my life. They are fun, funny, loving, imperfect, and devoted. They don't treat marriage like extreme dating that can be dumped as soon as it gets hard. They fight and eat crow and work hard to make up for their short falls. They pout and compromise. They exasperate each other and wouldn't trade their spouse for the world.

You guys cannot even fathom how encouraging it is to watch your relationships. I know you will see this and think, "She can't be talking about us because we are SO not the ideal!" but you will be wrong.

Here is to the wonderful loving marriages that I've been privileged to view from afar or from the intimacy of close friendships. Here are to my friends that unashamedly declare their love for the long haul. Here are to the people that remind me that people do still take those vows seriously:
  • Mom & Dad
  • Lucy & Jim
  • Brenda & Larry
  • BigSis & TallGuy
  • Kendra & Donny
  • Monica & The Hunter
  • Diane & Jimmy
  • Trish & Prince Charming
  • Lisa & Kevin
  • Shari & Wyatt
  • Kimberly & Alex
  • CBeth & The Engineer
  • Tiffany & Jeff
  • Michelle & Kenny
  • Leslie & Nathan
  • Deanne & Robert
  • Kim & Ken
  • Jane & Breen
  • Wanda & the Retired Pastor
  • Tracy & Marc
  • Jess & Jeff
  • Julie & Jeff
  • Allison & Rich
  • Jackie & Kevin
  • Jeannie & Jack
  • Alicia & Art
  • Fieryboots & A
  • a-dub & his Lovely Missus
  • Scoo & Mrs. Scoo
You guys - and so many others - really inspire me. Your love and affection means something to someone aside from your spouse.

Imagine that.

Friday, February 04, 2011

Snow Day for Texas!

I've been taking a beating from my friends in the north over my Facebook postings about our cold snap. Today, I'm sure I'll be taking a beating over the pictures I've posted of our snow day.

Since humans are such one-uppers in nature, we've always seen scenarios where you say something and someone has to start out, "That's NOTHING," and launches into how their similar experience was more intense, more scary, more wonderful, more SOMEthing. It has always driven me nuts. Especially when they have to go the scary route. It's like, hey, here's the most wonderful news of my life! I'm getting married/having a baby/whatever and then some competitive Debbie Downer has to pipe in with horror stories of the worst pregnancy or emergency c-section or someone having a heart attack at their wedding. Seriously?

So now with all these social networking sites, everyone can lob their competitive negativity from the comfort and safety of their couch, bed or armchair. Which has spurred me to invent an app where I can punch them in the neck from the safety of MINE.

Texas has been having a cold snap. It has been cold by anyone's standards. I'm a 20 year Boston veteran and a 4 degree wind chill still makes me think, Yah, that's pretty damned cold. I totally get that there are other parts of this world where 4 degrees is downright balmy and they'd be putting on the shorts and tank tops. But in TEXAS, people - where I LIVE now - that is the kind of cold most people are not prepared for. If you're a transplant like me, you have a nice sub-zero LLBean jacket, about 3 pair of snow boots and a myriad of hats and gloves. But lots of folks down here suffer through the few really cold days layering hoodies. Why spend the money for just a few days a year? So when we get a few weeks of below freezing weather, that's shocking. Especially when the day before saw near 80 degree warmth.

So for all my northern friends that love posting their "Suck it up, you big pansy" comments, yah, I got it. I wouldn't trade your 952 feet of snow for my cold snap for anything. That's one reason I moved down here. (Well it was housing prices but I've grown to love the mild short winters here.) But I have some friends in Canada that would love to post similar snotty remarks on your snow whining posts. But I digress into snotty land.

Roll your eyes or not, we got SNOW today. And underneath it, there was ice. I don't care where you live, smart people don't drive on that stuff if they don't have to. Or unless they have the vehicles to tackle that. So schools are closed. My state agency is closed. We got ourselves a real honest to goodness snow day! Only the second one due to snow that I've seen in the 5 years I've been down here. We had ice storms that close things. But only 2 snow days.

When you live somewhere that never gets something, it's a huge deal when you finally get that something. Even a tiny bit of that something. We are loving it. And as a former Bostonian, I'm glad it's just small enough to not have to shovel anything.

The Boy lovin' the snow (wearing some of my Sorrell snow boots)
My thick Mickey Mouse PJs and my Timberland boots
A cute, cold and happy Lil'Bro
The back of my house
Frozen and about to come back in