Tuesday, December 18, 2007

In which we were showered...

Yes, yes, I am a bad blogger. I think I have finally figured out my problem. I want to wait until I have something super interesting to say and when I finally do I spend days planning out how clever I will be. This seems to be unnecessary as I am always super clever, right? Anyhow, I thought I would share what I have been doing over the last month.
First was trip to Chicago for Thanksgiving with the P’s. This is always a fun event, but more so because I had my first baby shower. My pics here are limited because, well first I let my mother take pictures and that is never a good idea as she is one of the worst picture takers in the world (and I still love her). Second, we had an awesome helper in Genevieve, who helped pull stuff out of bags and unwrap presents. But this also means that she is smack dab in most of the pictures, which is good for me because I love her, but bad for the blog because I do not think it is a good idea to put pictures of a child who is not mine up in cyberspace. So you get some of the ones where Evie decided to take a break.

While there were a lot of people who could not make it, we had a great time. And at the end of the day there was so much stuff that Jeff and I had to leave some when we went home! We received a lot of clothes, the swing and bouncy seat, exersaucer, stuffed toys, rattles, monitors, a beautiful moses basket and more clothes. We also received the car seat from my awesome Sister in law. I think that every outfit with pooh on it has been given to Lilly, which of course I think is awesome since pooh is my favorite. And we had the best cake in the world!

Then just last week the lovely people at work threw me a shower in WV. It was a super good time and since there were no children there, lots of pics. I think everyone was excited because the last time someone in the department had a child was ten years ago. It has been demanded that we bring Lilly in for many visits. The food was awesome and once again we were given many lovely things: more clothes, books, blankets, toys, the changing pad, diaper genie and the bathtub. It was a bit easier to get this stuff home as we had no suitcases or dog.

I have one more shower to go, at my Aunt La’s house over Christmas break when we get back to the Quad Cities this weekend. I am sure that will be as fun as the others have been and people will be more than generous. As it goes now I wonder if Lilly will need us to buy any clothes during her first year, I doubt it. My mother has given us the bassinet, and I think we will have the crib well in hand by the time we get back into WV after the first of the year. We will have some baby gear to buy, but not a lot. We will need the stroller (which we figured we would purchase as it is expensive), bottles, slings (to carry Lilly around), boppy, bumboseat, sheets and most importantly the pack ‘n play. I think these might be the first thing we buy because we live in a house with two floors, and I am not walking my ass up and down those stairs constantly!

More updates will come soon as we travel around Illinois for Christmas and New years, but the good news is that MLA is in Chicago, which means we will not have to go on a another trip!!!

Friday, November 16, 2007

I think we have a mouse..

Yes, you read that correctly. And it seems to be a pretty smart mousie as well, he has found a way to the food without having to play chicken with the cats. Unfortuantely mousie has worn out his welcome and there is an electric trap waiting for him, and that is a human death for him, I was just going to open the door and let Ella and Louie go after him, so he should be grateful.

So this all started with Louie. I had noticed that Louie, for the past few weeks had taken up sentry right in front of the cabinets under the sink. He just sat there and stared for hours in the evening, occasionally scratching at the door. At first I thought that maybe a bug had gotten in there. We have a lot of camel crickets try to come in when the weather starts getting cold. Now Louie really does not like the crickets and tends to leave cricket corpses scattered across the basement, probably as a warning to others. So I thought that maybe a cricket had gotten into to the cabinet, but I was wrong. Just this week we started to hear the unmistakable sounds of mousie scratching coming from the cabinet. I, of course being a wussy when faced with the thought of rodents, made Jeff go look. He did not see a mouse, but did find a hole that came up right into that cabinet. Now this is below the sink, where we keep the garbage. So this mouse had found a way into the house and right to the garbage without having to face any cats. Now this is a smart mousie, because if he ever came outside of that cabinet Louie or Ella would have him. But an intelligent mouse is still a mouse and so must die. Last night a spoke to the cabinet, telling the mousie not to come back, and if he did he would not be happy. Then today I bought and electric trap, one that will kill mousie inside a nice box and I will never have to see him. I do not feel bad. He was warned and if he comes back he is responsible for his own death.

On a different note, I will be trying to cook a small t-day dinner for Jeff and I on Sat. Yes I said that I would cook it, and I think I will do very well. (And Jeff will be there the entire time, so calm down!)

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Even Hal knows...

I have to agree with Jeff whose argument is that in my past life I must have been good at drinking the blood of kittens, that is the only explanation for the karma that follows me around. And I must be still being punished, which is the only explanation for how even my own computer likes to screw with me. Honestly I wonder what the hell I can do to change my luck, but nothing seems to work. As far as my computer goes I have had the cable people out to check the modem, I have had the computer itself checked and I have run every virus checker and nothing works. What is the problem you may ask? Well it seems like my computer likes to decide that random websites are off limits to me. They will no download, and I can not get to them for days on end. There is no rhyme or reason to what sites are down at any given time, except of course that it is usually a site that I need or what to get to. Do I want to check my email? That will be down. Do I want to add stuff to the baby registry? Go to a message board or blog that I read regularly? Down. Do I want to look at new jobs offered in my field, research some 19th century publication from the London Library? Down. Now these sites are not always down, they are down when I need them. There is no reasonable explanation for this other than even my computer hates me. Honestly I am starting to feel persecuted here and I can not get work done that I need to get done. I guess I should just give up and watch more TV, give up the chase for a good job with a decent wage and maybe move into a trailer. For right now I am blaming my pregnancy hormones, but if this keeps up I am not sure what can be done, does the internet carry a grudge?

Monday, October 08, 2007

Dance of the Sugar Plum Strollers

Now I knew when I got pregnant that our materialistic why make it simple when it could be complex society would make buying baby gear an exercise in frustration, but no where in my imagination did I see the dance of the strollers coming. There are literally thousands of strollers out there and they all do different things, are made by different people and have different safety standards and accessories. Now I am a smart girl who does her research and makes mostly good decisions, but this stroller thing might just be the end of me. It is driving me so crazy that I am having dreams that I am being attacked by strollers, like a scene from Hitchcock’s The Birds. Jeff thinks I am stressing too much about this, but I would like to put my baby in a safe mode of transportation that is stylish and practical, is that too much to ask for? Apparently so, so let us go over some of the top contenders, well for funnsies.

First there is the ultimate of baby strollers, the Bugaboo. If all things were equal, and I was rich, I would buy this thing in a heartbeat, it has everything that I want, it has a bassinet for an infant and then a regular stroller for an older kid. It comes in a variety of colors and looks good. And if I had a grand to blow I would certainly own this (maybe, I still don’t know if I would spend that much on a stroller).

I thought about travel systems, but every review I have read urges not to buy one. I guess the cons outweigh the pros. The pros are of course that you can take the infant seat right out of the car and click it into the stroller without waking the baby or moving them. Of all the travel systems I have found I like these two the best, the Baby Trend (green and gray) and Chicco Cortina. I like the Chicco a bit more, but of course it is more expensive. But I guess the cons of travels systems happen after the baby is out of the infant seat. I guess it turns out that the strollers are kind of crappy. And of course since the baby outgrows the infant seat I do not want to be stuck with a stroller that falls apart.
Besides I have decided that I like the pram kind of stroller that can convert into a regular stroller, and with most regular strollers you can also snap in an infant seat. Or I could go this way, and skip the stroller altogether for the first few months. This is a snap and go system that is just a stroller frame into which an infant seat snaps in. This is good for keeping the infant seat going and forgoing the stroller altogether. But I don’t know if I like this system, I am not sure why.

So let’s move on to the strollers I do really like, the ones that convert from a pram to a regular stroller. First there is the Combi Thru.
Now this is the perfect stroller, and the price is just right so of course that means that it is too good to be true. This stroller is not made anymore. Bastards. Now I also really like these two, the Britax (black and tan) and Fischer Price (green), both of which convert, but neither of which can also support an infant seat, where most of the other convertible strollers can. So with these I would get the aesthetic, but not the practicality that I would need.

So now the last of them, the ones I have narrowed my search down to. First is the Peg Perego Pramette (gray right). This stroller is perfect, it goes from a pram to a stroller, has a high safety rating and looks good, it also comes with a price tag to match, around $450. This is still a bit expensive for a stroller. There is the Everbright (below), which is in my price range and comes with all of the things that I want, but of course there is a downside, the reviews for this product are only so-so and there is no ability to snap in an infant seat. This is also a really new product, so there is not a lot that we know about it yet. And so at the end of the day the one I really like is the Peg Perego Centro Completo (hey it’s Italian). This converts from a pram to a stroller, has a high safety rating and is pleasing to look at. Also important, it has an adjustable handle that will come in handy seeing as both Jeff and I are taller than average. So this stroller is almost perfect, it would be more perfect if it was a wee bit cheaper than $300. I mean it is not crazy expensive, but I do wish it were just a little less cash. The upside is that this allows an infant seat to be snapped in, most easily the Peg Perego, but also the Snugride. But for all of that I am still not sure. I mean I like this stroller, but can I justify the cash?

I can not answer all of this yet, I am hoping with enough time I will eventually stumble onto something or make up my mind, but I am not promising anything. And until then I guess the dance with just continue.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Sunshine go away today...

I don’t feel much like dancin’. I love that new Jeep commercial, it makes me happy for reasons I am not quite clear on, one I am sure is because I love my Jeep. Now some people know that buying a Jeep is a lot like joining a cult. All of a sudden you get magazines and jamboree invitations, other Jeep owners wave at you, it’s like a club. And I love my Jeep. Normally it looks much like this, except that it is navy blue and has a sunroof. It is not too big, it’s not too small, it is just right, yes I am Goldilocks. And when I drive it I do feel like dancing. But in the last few weeks my beautiful Jeep has become a wounded soldier. Almost three weeks ago I was rear ended by, and I am not kidding here, a delivery truck working for the school board. I was actually impressed with the beating my Jeep took. I was hit by a truck for the love of God, I thought the whole back end was going to be squished. But it wasn’t, instead I have a broken tail light and bashed in gate, all told almost $3000 of damage. And the kicker? I can’t get it into the body shop until Oct 1rst! So I have been driving a car around with a broken tail light, can anyone guess how long it took before that became a problem? So I called in for a rental car until my car can be fixed, of course at the insurance company’s expense. My mistake was asking for a car that was comparable to my own car, and what I meant was I did not want a compact car, let’s be honest Jeff can’t fit into a compact car. I thought they would give me a sedan, boy was I wrong, because this is what they gave me, oh yes a big honkin’ trailblazer. The thing is HUGE!! I sit so high up and the dashboard is so wide, I never know if I am staying in the lines! I also feel a bit wasteful, me along driving this huge car around. Of course we have already had a problem with the rental car. The first day we had it it came up with a flat tire, this was Tuesday. I would not have though much about it except that we had just changed a flat tire on the Jeep on Saturday, I am sensing a trend here. Fortunately because it was a rental car I did not have to change the tire myself (or rather Jeff didn’t have to change the tire, you really didn’t think I was ever changing attire did you?). But now I am a bit afraid to take any of the cars out, I think the car gods are angry with us I am not sure how to appease them, what does one sacrifice to the car gods? Some fuzzy dice? Well let’s hope next week is better, I had hopes for this one, but that did not work out, so I am looking forward to next week. Wish us luck!

Friday, September 07, 2007

The Joys of West VIrgina

Yesterday I made one of the inevitable mistakes that happens when you live in West Virginia and no where else. Jeff and I were on our way home from Target (how did it happen that I have become so suburbanized that I am at Target at least once a week?) and this little beat up hatchback of indiscernible origin was going super slow. Of course I took great offense to this and yelled (within my car not outside of it, geez, I am not a crazy person) “get out of the way you freaky hippie!” Jeff noticed my mistake right away, this bushy haired and bearded slow moving pile of rusted car was not hippie, it was mountain man. Now this is a mistake that happens often here in WV, but I think it is an ironic one none the less.

Now first we must say shame on me for seeing a great mass of hair and a crappy car at least 15 years old and jumping to conclusions, but when I am behind the wheel of a car people should really leave me alone (or I should not be allowed to drive) but seriously, if you get on the road, drive correctly! Anyway, I am sorry (not really) and let’s move on. So normally when you confuse stereotypes of people they are not so diametrically opposed, I mean rarely does one yell “punk” when they mean “young Republican.” But in WV it is quite easy to mistake mountain man for hippie, it actually happens all the time because unless said mountain man is wearing his buckskins, it is difficult to differentiate one from the other from 10 feet away. Now you will find these people at the same place occasionally, say a mountain top removal protest, but that is about it. When seeing a hippie up close the mountain man might mumble under his breath “dirty secular liberal” and the hippie might shake his head and wish to Buddha that the mountain man come to his sense and vote Democrat, which is why I think the all too common mistaken identity is just one of the fun things about living in WV!

New topic, here are a few pics of the sweater I am trying to complete for my new neice or newphew who will be here at the end of Nov. Now I know I have time, but I may not make it! Why? Because I can not get this $#^#@^$ neckband to knit up right! I have tried with DPN and circs, but it juts won't work. DO you think the new baby will really need a neckband? But I have yet to start anything for my own little ski on the way. I am hoping that the weather will turn soon because I do not feel much like knitting when it is 102 outside! But I know that will not happen until Oct. so I should just bite the bullet and start something new! ENough for now, coming soon, though pics of the damage to the new jeep!

Saturday, September 01, 2007

I've been tagged!

So I have been tagged, which actually makes me happy, I have never been tagged before, by my cousin in-law over at mylifewithdogs. Of course if you asked anyone they would swear he is actually related to us by more than marriage (which would really freak out his wife to whom I am actually related). But since I have been tagged here we go with six weird things about me. Of course most readers will not be surprised by this list because I am never one to hide the weirdness, I am right up front with it.

But never the less, here goes……

I am a sucker for any movie that is big and pretty. Titanic? Moulin Rogue? I loved ‘em, I don’t care about plot or character or pacing, is it big and pretty? Then I will watch it twenty times, I will also always pick the action flick over the romantic comedy every time. Right now I can not wait for Shoot ‘em Up to come out because it looks awesome! Especially the helicopter stunts.
I really, really want to like sushi, but I don’t. I am not sure why I really want to like it except that it seems so sophisticated and chic to say things like, well we went for sushi. I have tried really hard, I have eaten a lot of different kinds of sushi, but they all feel like rubber and make me want to spit it out in a napkin (which, on occasion, I have done). I am also so stubborn I will probably never give up trying to like sushi.
I have a very strange love/hate relationship with coffee. I love it, but after two cups it hates me. If I had my druthers I would drink coffee all day everyday, but my stomach disagrees. And of course now that I am pregnant I don’t drink it at all because it seems the baby does not like coffee the way I do, which makes me wonder if this kid is really mine. I also wish that there were a Starbuck’s on every corner for my own convenience.
I continuously find it amazing that students write down stuff that I say. Now I know consciously that I am the professor and that I make up the tests and quizzes and grade the papers, so what I say should be written down and studied. But I still find it disconcerting that students take my knowledge and apply it to stuff, I am half afraid at some point one of them will accuse me of being a fake and not knowing what the hell I am talking about and I will freeze and agree with them.
I enjoy some hard core rap, like Emiem and Kanye West. People will look at me and say, uh..excuse me but don’t you write and study feminist theory? Yes, and yes I am a feminist, but I believe that some of these artists rise above the bitches and hoes crap and actually create art. I do not believe that everything is art, but I do believe that anything can be art which is why I enjoy these guys.
I tend to get obsessive about stuff. I will find a TV show that I enjoy in syndication and then watch every one until I have seen them all. After that I usually lose interest. I will also start new hobbies a lot. I will see something that looks interesting and usually teach myself how to do it. Once I have mastered it, it usually goes away. There are some exceptions, I still knit.

Now I though about writing about how I am not a spur of the moment kind of person and research everything thoroughly before I make any decision, but most people know that about me anyway, it is part of my A type personality.
I will take this opportunity to tag everyone over at Killarneysirishblog, because they all need something more to do now that school has started! HAHAHA I would also like to thanks the Swansons for this opportunity to write about something, I think Greg will be my inspirtation to keep up more on this blog! Coming in the next few days, the damage to the new jeep because some guy in a delivery truck hit me!

Monday, August 06, 2007

Disney and Visits and Babies...Oh My!

Yes, yes I know it has been over two months, I am a bad, bad person and should be shot. But as most people know now, I am pregnant and no one is allowed to shoot the mama to be!

There has been a lot going on this summer, but nothing so pressing that I did not have time to update this damn thing. It all started with the Disney trip at the beginning of June which was super fun, but as we soon discovered, early June weather in Florida does not suit us all that well, we will stick to March from now on. While it is always warm in Florida, March is much better than the “I can’t breathe humidity” of June. But we did have a good time, and came home with a little souvenir of our own.

We were there for our anniversary and decided that for our presents to each other we would go to a nice dinner, I mean a super fancy dinner at Victoria and Albert’s. For those not in the Disney know..V &A’s is the fanciest dinner in town. It was seven course and we got the wine pairing which meant we were actually quite drunk by the time we left. The people were very nice, although I think our waitress was judging us, especially when I whipped out the camera to take a pic of the individualized menu, which also said Happy Anniversary. I was more impressed though with the letter from the Queen that they had in the women’s bathroom! When I can back to the table to gush to Jeff, another waitress promised to take me in another room with a painting of V&A, and there she took a few pics for us. It was super fun, but as it turns out I am not fancy, and I always though that I was. I believed that deep down I was switched at birth and I belonged more with the Kennedy’s, but as it turns out, not so much. Don’t get me wrong, seven course dinners are great every three years for an anniversary, but as a common thing I think I would be bored.

So I didn’t take lots of pics at Disney mostly because I have a ton of pics from previous trips and I don’t need another pic of the castle. But we did catch the end of the Flower Expo at Epcot, which was a good time. See the super cool Captain Hook and Peter below and well as some other statues made all of flowers and plants.

We got back home in time to start making the homestead ready for the P’s, who came to visit for a week. We had a really good time as we took off for the Ripley Craft Fair on the fourth, but my illness kicked in just about the same time, and it has not left yet. But a good time was had by all and after they left along came by B-day, where I turned the big 32, but I think I look much too young, so I am comfortable saying I am 28 or 30 at the oldest. But I did get this cool speaker for my ipod if I should ever get an office of my own. Oh and I got Disney Scene It, which is fun, but if you play make sure to use the adult questions and not the kids, because then you will just get pissed at the hubby because he wins so easily.

We actually have just returned from another trip that took us from Chicago to the QC and then to the UP in Michigan, but I should leave something to discuss later. more pics will come I swear!

Thursday, May 17, 2007

The Semester is Over!

And we all dance! I dropped off all of my administrative paperwork, and am officially done with the semester. Jeff and I went out for a celebratory lunch and now I am left sitting on my couch looking at the disaster of a house that I haven’t had time to clean in three weeks. But I think I will do that tomorrow, today I will sit like a slug on my couch and enjoy doing nothing. Tomorrow I will clean, run some errands and basically get stuff done that I haven’t had time to do lately, namely get a hair appointment and start getting ready for Florida. Yes we leave next Friday to Chicago for a b-day party and from there we are flying to Orlando for one sun soaked week of Mickey and his friends. I can not wait. I will swim and drink and basically act like a hokey tourist for awhile before I get back home and have to face summer. Of course the only pressing matter for summer is finishing my last chapter, defending and hopefully preparing for a job next year.

I do have lots of pics and updates for you. I am working on a cute little sweater for the newest addition to the family and I still have not shared the pictures from the Boston trip, and I will get to all of that I promise, but for now I am a lazy slob on the couch, tomorrow I will be productive.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

For Today, We are all Hokies

Monday our world was made a much sadder place. I have not really been able to write about it yet, I will probably only muddle my way through this now, but I will try.

I have had to quit watching much news, my morning routine because I am filled with unimaginable sadness. The pictures of the students, the faculty, and the campus is all too familiar to me. What I see is my students, my colleagues, my campus. I think all of us that spend our days on a campus feel like this right now. In the middle of class I have to stop and catch my breath as I look over my students, I know I would be devastated to lose any of them. Worse I have sat in class thinking about how I would barricade the door, where the safest place to stand was, and how we could get out of a window. The good news is that none of this has stopped me from going to class; it has just made me more wary. I wonder if that is a good or bad thing. I don’t want to have to work on conjecture about what student might just lose it. Unfortunately the stories from VT are not that surprising. I have worked and attended more that a few colleges, from community to large Universities and the protocols are all pretty much the same. There are never enough police or security employed by the school. And to be fair, a college campus is one of the safest places that you could be on a day to day basis, so it is not strange that one of the places that are cut in a budget crisis is security. And problems on campus are usually not advertised because colleges fear that parents will yank students, so the administration of VT is was not abnormal in their decisions, they were actually very normal. I can hope that one of the good things to come out of this tragedy is that we can rethink the kinds of security that we need on campus. Right now there is no way to lockdown a campus, it’s actually impossible because campuses are made to be accessible to students and if they are public schools, the land is public property which means the campus is open to anyone. Schools actually look at ways to make the campus more accessible to students, not less. Buildings are often old, used for aesthetics or efficiency, not safety. Doors to classrooms open out, not in, which often could be a fire hazard. And classrooms are set up logistically for the best way to educate, not safety. Much of this can change and much of this should not change. Campuses need to be open and accessible for students, but they also need to be patrolled more. We have to understand that when you have a lot of people congregated in one place there may be fights or problems and they should be handled, but they should also be reported. If there is an incident with a weapon, we as faculty need to know about it. We can be notified much more easily then students can and if the situation is taken care of we can stall rumors, but if it is not we can make decisions about what we expect from our students and ourselves. I can’t pretend to know all that goes into logistic and security decisions fro a university, after all I am just an English professor, but I do know that I love my job and all of my students are precious to all of us, even if we sometimes complain about them. So I do know that we need to discuss these problems and make some changes and that needs to be done soon.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Under Pressure

That if, of course the song pinging through my head as of late. And fortunately I am old enough to think David Bowie, not Vanilla Ice, but that doesn’t mean that this is any less frustrating. It is of course not that far away from the end of the semester, I have mountainous piles of grading and students coming out of the woodwork. I of course do not know if I have a job next year, but I need to finish that last chapter of the dissertation. The house is a mess and I have laundry to do, but I have carved out a space on my couch because work always takes priority. Last weekend I was supposed to play some catch up and get ahead. But instead I was made a last minute trip to Illinois. Thankfully it was all for naught and everything is back to normal, but I didn’t get any work done. How could I when there were babies to play with. We got back on Monday night, just enough time for me to teach a few classes because we are off again Thursday for Boston and a conference. Why is it I ask that all cheap flights leave at some god forsaken time that I rarely see unless I stay up all night? So my this time tomorrow I will be in Boston, will maybe get some sightseeing in around the conference by the time I leave on Sunday. And the back to the grind and trying to finish the semester without jumping out my office window. Of course I am only on the second floor, so I would just break a leg and they would still be expecting me to grade finals. But I will post pictures when I get back, at least you have that to look forward to!

Monday, March 19, 2007

I Got an Ipod! I Got an Ipod!! I Got an Ipod!!!

Yes it is true, after a couple of months of whining, my husband took me to Target and ordered me to purchase my new ipod!!! I almost thought of waiting until this summer and getting the new iphone, but honestly what the hell would I do with it? I probably wouldn’t even know what the hell to do with something like that and I figure the first few years will be filled with problems that will need worked through and I am not a good beta tester, I am far too impatient. Through research I finally narrowed now what I wanted to the video ipod. I thought the nano colors were cool, but to get one that held at least 500 songs I would spend $50 less then getting the video ipod, and with the video one you can, you know, watch videos and load photos (which of course I have already done). And so the last choice I had to make was color and really it was 50/50. Did I want white or did I want black? I spent some time checking them out and debated the merits of color with Jeff until he decided that he had enough of that and left me to go look at games. In the end I got the black one, and I am happy. I was leaning toward the white one, but everyone has the white one, so to be just a bit different (I mean come on, you really can’t pull of disaffected with an ipod, but the black one? Maybe) I bought the black one. I am not putting it out of the realm of possibility that Johnny Depp called to me from the packaging. I mean he is a pirate and all, somehow at once all dirty and sexy, but hey it’s Johnny Depp, I can’t be held responsible for my actions.

So the nice thing about the new ipods, they come charged. When I bought Jeff his ipod just over three years ago it came in a huge box and had to be charged for like three days (maybe that is an over-exaggeration) so I was happy to start playing right away, except….that when my computer crashed three weeks ago and I had to reset the entire thing it hadn’t wiped out my itunes. I installed the new one, but I don’t have the music that I purchased previously. It turns out that they expect that it is all backed up on your ipod, but when your ipod is already dead, there is no back up. (I know, I know but I worried about backing up the diss, not my music). I have emailed itunes and I hope that they will take pity on me, especially since I just spent an inordinate amount of money on this damn thing. But the new ipod is awesome. It has a huge screen that is also color. I downloaded some pics already and it is awesome! I set it up so that it plays a slideshow when I am listening to music, and of course I bought some new music. Jeff taught me how to listen to Sirius radio online (hey I pay for it) so every time I heard a song I liked I wrote it down (there are a lot of post its on my desk) and I downloaded some today. Once I get my already purchased music and put is some CD’s I will be like 1% on my way to filling up the damn thing!

But the thing to remember is I LOVE LOVE LOVE my new purchase and that means that it may just be a good spring break. Of course from here on out I will be neck deep in my dissertation (the goal being to finish) so don’t expect to hear from me for awhile.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

My Mid-Week Vent

Ok, so most of the time I use my blog to write about knitting and what I did over the weekend, but today I am irritated at many things and so I vent. I should warn the faint of heart, but I won’t because if you are reading this then you already know my political slant.

I find it all kinds of frightening that outing a CIA spy is not considered treasonous. I mean really, are you f&^^Y& kidding me? How is that not some how treason? She was a SPY. I repeat, a SPY!!!! But no, I guess that if you are the VP you can do whatever the hell you want. You can also, it seems hire a guy who doesn’t remember what he said when and to who. I mean who in the world actually believes that Scooter Libby, who was the chief of staff for the Vice President of the United States, has such a bad memory that he can’t remember what he had been told and when? I mean really? Isn’t one of the main sticking points for holding a position like Chief of staff in the WHITE HOUSE is knowing a lot of people and remembering those people and the information they have given you?
It also scares the sh*! Out of me that the Attorney General can break the law in every imaginable way and still not resign or be booted. I mean how bad does what you did have to be that it doesn’t even fall under the purview of the Patriot Act? I mean this is an act that allows the suspension of habeas corpus, secret wiretapping and secret trials to get secret warrants with little to no evidence. So it is really telling when what you have done isn’t even legal by Patriot Act standards. And on top of that you also intimidate federal prosecutors to hold off on arresting certain people and push to arrest other before the big election. Of yes and fire those people who disagree with you. All of this and no resignation, oh and no word from the White House. WOW.
When children perish tragically in a fire, it makes no difference whatsoever if they were illegal aliens or not. No one bit of difference. Did you hear me Mr. O’Reilly? Oh yeah and 10 year old kidnapping victims most likely assaulted by the pedophile who stole him are not to blame for what has happened to them. Blame the victim is an old game, but blame the victim who is a child? Come on. I have no doubt that you are a culture warrior, but I do doubt is you have a human heart.
I would like every single hatemongering person who makes incendiary statements about homosexuals to think for just one second about how history will judge them. You know those horrible people who justified lynching and fought segregation with their ignorant and racist speech? That is you in 10 years; students will see those comments and wonder at how people could actually treat other human beings that way. Discrimination is discrimination; it is not justified because you say so. You don’t like someone lifestyle? Deal with it because no one should be discriminated against because some small faction of people can’t read the Bible correctly.
I think that is enough for now, I will probably have an FBI file by morning, so if you don’t here from me again, try me at Gitmo.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

The good, the bad, and...well you know

Yes, yes, yes it has been a crazy week that has vacillated between being super cool and fun and driving me to drink copious amount of alcohol and toying with the idea of chucking it all and running away with the circus. And the best part is, it’s only Wednesday. So what’s a girl to do? Bitch on her blog it seems. But let’s start with the good.

On Saturday we went to a dinner party (which is turns out adults do a lot and, depending on the people you eat with, much more fun they I ever thought there would be) and we met some new super cool people. And we all drunkenly decided that we needed to have a karaoke party, since I, for some reason have two karaoke machines. How does a girl with absolutely no musical skills have two karaoke machines? Well because I like to sing, even though I am awful at it, Jeff bought me a stand alone machine last year, which I plug in and play when Jeff’s not home. And then in Philli over Christmas break Jennie told me about this cool game you can play on the X-Box, Karaoke Revolution which comes with its own mic and you get points and stuff for singing on key, and you can go head to head with someone else in competition. This is the best because you just have to hit the right note, it doesn’t matter what it sounds like. And Jeff is happy with it because it is the only X-Box game I will play. But I digress. The decision was that I would bring the machines, Jeff would make perogies and we would have a fun party.

Then on Tuesday we had a speaker at school for the Black history month convocation. It was Alfre Woodard, an actress that you may recognize from Scrooged or her new gig Desperate Housewives. Now I will admit that I was not too excited about rearranging my syllabus to take my class to a speech by some actress. I mean if it had been academic or something no problem, but an actress? But I did it and I actually really enjoyed her speech. I think that she really surprised people who thought she was just going to give a nice little speech. Instead she railed against the war in Iraq and the way in which this administration is ignoring the poor and disenfranchised in this country to make a train wreck out of another. And she appealed to the students to make their mark, to stand up for those who can not because they are the future. She ended by reciting a Langston Hughes poem which she did beautifully (duh she us an actress). It was great fun, but I think she surprised people with such an overtly political speech. And the students enjoyed it, which was really the point.

And the bad side? Well I won’t get into it now, and I wouldn’t discuss some of it on this blog. Let’s just say that it starts with the pile of stuff on my desk at work that needs to be graded and end with me banging my head against a door because people are driving me crazy, but again I won’t name names, that would be a bit dangerous. But let’s suffice it say that I will just sit here with my cocktail and try to forget today every happened with a couple of mindless hours of American Idol.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Moving on...

And that is what I am doing, the Bears lost the Super Bowl, but we have next year and only a few more months before Cubbie spring training. So we will move on…..

I thought that it has been over a month since our trip to Philli and I never posted pics! I would like to point out before the viewing that the night before we left J and I fell sick with the babyflu. Truly I do not know who got me sick, but there were three babies and no students so someone needed to take the blame. This means that we had a 14 hour drive with two sick people downing strange blue cold-buster. Actually the drive wasn’t that bad, but I did have a scary day when I realized that my voice was going, going gone. I blame the flu, but it also might have had something to do with the late night of drinking the first night we got there! But I gave my paper, it was well received, met up with some friends that I have not seen in a while, had some drinks and saw some stuff.

When we got to Philli I had luncheon to go to, but after that we walked around the city a bit. One of the first things I decided we need to see what Betsy Ross’s house, and I made Jeff take the audio tour, yes he was happy with that. I liked this kitty fountain that was in the courtyard, but I honestly don’t know how Betsey would feel about the Starbuck’s across the street. That night we went to dinner with L. We walked around until we found someplace that looked good, but once inside Fork we realized that this was one of those hippier than cool, everyone wearing black place. I bet that they served little food too, and everyone knows how I feel about little food. So we went one block over and eat at this great Italian place. There was wine and fun had by all, and after dinner we went back to the hotel bar and more friends.

The next day we had another round of things to see, but before that we had to get our picture taken with this guy. Turns out we were too late to see Independence Hall, so we headed over to the Constitution museum, which is very cool. It’s fun for kids, or people like me who really just like taking pictures with bronzed statues. My favorite part of the museum was the screens through history to tell you who could vote, J says he could vote from the get go if he counted the car as property.

The next day I gave my presentation and then we saw the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall. I have to say that after the long line and the security the Liberty Bell looked, well how should I say this, kind of fake. I mean it looked like the bronze was sprayed on or dipped in plastic. Independence hall though was more fun. We saw the room where the Declaration of Independence was signed, which was pretty cool. And then we walked around to point out all the places that Nicholas Cage stood in National Treasure. And we were not the only ones doing so, which makes me wonder exactly what kind of dork we are! But in all the drink was fun and if you make the trip here is an interesting tip, every road stop on the PA turnpike has a Starbucks, enjoy.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

SuperBowl Bound.....

So there is definitely a lot to catch up on in my life, or really not so much but I am sure people would like to see some pics of the trip to Philly. But the big news ‘round here is, of course, that my bears are going to the SUPERBOWL!!!! Yes, I said the Chicago Bears. Are. Going. To. The. Superbowl. To put this in perspective, the last time that the Chicago Bears went to the Superbowl I was 10 years old. It was so long ago, as a matter of fact, that I distinctly remember my brother and I taping the superbowl shuffle on a blank audio tape off of the radio. We knew every word because my mom would play the radio in the morning when we were eating breakfast and getting ready for school. And after 21 long years of suffering as a Bears fan, we are back. This has been one hell of a season, we couldn’t have it be easy could we? Of course not, that is not the Chicago way. We had to backtrack and flounder, try to give it away and then take it back. This season the Bears took a page from the Cardiac Cubs. But Sunday’s game against the Saints was awesome. There was no wishy-washy performance, we wanted it more. It was a perfect Chicago game, snow flurrying down to coat the field and players and Soldier Field shaking like a snow globe. It was beautiful and if you don’t think football can be beautiful, you’re a philistine and I don’t know if I want to talk with you anymore.

This of course means a few things will happen over the course of the next two weeks. There will be much smack talk between my father and me. He, a long time Colts fan has much to be happy about. The last time the Colts were in the Superbowl they were still in Baltimore and I hadn’t been born yet. So his long suffering has been very long indeed. People often ask him why the hell he is a Colts fan and the answer is simple, when he was a boy he loved Johny U (if you don’t know who that is I am surprised you’ve read this entry this long). And there will be smack talk. I called him Sunday night to say one thing, we’re coming for you. I also felt the need to warn him that he should really take down the big Colts flag he has flying in the front yard as he does live in northern Illinois, only a few scant hours from Soldier Field. And in the next few weeks I will want to throw things at the new TV more times than I can count because the same talking heads that said the Saints would win will be talking about how the Bears will never bring down Payton. All of this is in the future, but for now I am just happy because instead of waiting patiently for the baseball season to start I am planning a Superbowl party, Chicago night at our house.


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