Grace in Small Things 3×365

  1. I did something today, that yesterday even talking about how scary it was made me literally sob. Today I conquered great big hairy scary FEAR (insert dramatic music interjection here). I introduced myself to a business manager, told them the services I offered, gave them a few of my business cards, and then asked them to pass the spares to anyone they came across needing graphic design services. Much to my own pleasant surprise, I did none of the following: have a massive panic attack, forget essential parts of the English language, or shit myself. I did it. I did it afraid, but I DID IT.
  2. I got new specs fo’ FREE! A friend that works at a lens lab hooked me up with a special program their company does to get folks without insurance new glasses.
  3. Hunky got new specs fo’ FREE, too!
  4. And then aforementioned friend took me out to McDonald’s for lunch.
  5. Hunky got me an early birthday present today. I have “I’ve no job but I’ve got great boots!” boots! Black leather, and they’ve got heels. Like, not motorcycle boots’ “I’ll ride my bike OVER you, bitch” heels; like, “Day-um, Tom, quit grabbing my ass! We’re in public, man!” heels. I don’t get it. The male readers reader here probably understands this phenomenon, but I do not get how heels make our asses hotter.

It was a very good day. *sighs contentedly*

I may have to beat him with his diploma.

When I graduated, I had a party. I had just spent 18 months completing a five semester graphic design program at my local community college to earn my AA. That day, I got up, and Kizzle and I went to The Five Seasons Center to go through the ceremony with 1500ish other graduates.

It was a HUGE deal for me.

I had attempted college about 10 years prior. It wasn’t pretty, people. I did one semester at Kellogg Community College and one semester at Glen Oaks Community College, both in Michigan. Then I moved to Iowa and brought my barely 2.0 GPA with me and transferred it to the community college here. I met Hunky a couple months in, in French class. That semester, I got an A. The next semester we started dating, and I took French II. I got a D. I was working full time, going to school full time, and then later, also planning a wedding. I decided to take a semester or two off because I was just exhausted, and no closer to deciding what I wanted to be when I “grew up”. Fast forward about 10 years and two kids later. I had been separated from my husband for almost a year and bought a house alone. Before I even made the first house payment, my paid-off car died so I had to buy a car and take on another payment. Before I even had a chance to make the first car payment, I got laid off. I knew that there was nowhere else in Cedar Rapids I could make the same amount of money as at the job I had just lost. I decided that 1- I was going to have to go back to school and B- I was going to have to finally decide what I wanted to be when I grew up. I knew it was going to be challenging. My GPA had hit a new low: 1.6. But since then, I had also been diagnosed with ADD and my hearing was degrading much more quickly than I had anticipated. But I had also done a lot of work with a psychiatrist and therapist for coping mechanisms for ADD, and had a bright shiny new hearing aid. It went even better than I thought it would. I had earned all As and had brought that 1.6 kicking, screaming, and crab-walking like Regan in The Exorcist all the way up to a 3.492. The only regret that I had was that I missed wearing honors cords by .008.

Now we’re back to that day, maybe even the best day of my life, my graduation day. I had finished something. I had accomplished something. I had found an occupation that I would have gladly done for fun. It was an amazing day of celebration. Kizzle and I had bought brand new Cons for the occasion; hers bright yellow, mine bright green. Our families would be able to pick us out of the 1500ish graduates in the procession with identical gray mortarboards and robes. My mom, step dad, sister and sister’s best friend had come from Michigan for the occasion.

We went through the graduation ceremony and that night, we all went to my favorite bar and all my friends were there; even one of my professors! It was probably the best night of my life. We ended up closing down the bar and then going to breakfast afterwards. I passed out in the back of my sister’s Durango on a tire iron. I was so passed out, I was laying on a tire iron and could not have moved off of it if it was 1000 degrees and had ten penny nails soldered on spiking out of it. It was hawsum.

When Hunky was just a little ways away from getting his AA, I asked what he wanted to do for his party. To my surprise, and well, intense irritation, his answer was a resounding “Eh.”

Which I met with a sputter-y “What?!”

He explained that he wanted to wait until he got his BA for the, I believe he called it, “rigmarole.” Because this wasn’t really a big deal, you see.

You what to the who now?!

After I gave him the tongue-lashing he was begging for, and he got done backpedaling and reiterating what a ginormous deal it was to earn an AA and how proud he was of me for attaining that achievement, we simply left it at that. The AA would go by quietly, and we would throw him a huge bash when he graduated with his BA. Okfine.

Now he’s announced that he didn’t turn in his application for graduation form by the deadline, but hey, it’s no big deal because we’ll just have a party when he gets his Masters!

Oy, vey. I could just smack him. But with my luck, he’d enjoy it.

What do I win? Are there at least some fabulous parting gifts?

NaBloPoMo It’s been one of those days that makes me hate NaBloPoMo. I have several different ideas for something to write about; however, each one would take more effort than I have the energy for. I could have done a Weekly Winners post, but do you think I remembered to take any pictures this week?! Hay-yell NoooOOOoooo, I did not.

I went to church (15 minutes late AS USUAL, I think people would have a heart attack and die from surprise if we showed up ON TIME) and then sat in the coffee shop and chatted with friends while the rugrats were in kid’s church. Then I went to a friend’s baby shower and actually ATE (ok, I admit it, I only SMELLED) the baby food (Oh, alright, I admit I licked the spoon on one of them) during the baby food game. Got home around almost 4:00pm with the full and good-hearted intention to write my blog post and then finish the laundry.

I sat down here at the computer several hours ago. Let’s see how many things I came up with to do to procrastinate writing my blog post.

  1. Read a couple comments that I got from Maggie linking to me. *waves frantically at Maggie*  Everybody say, “HiiiIIIiiii, Maaaaaaggggggie!”  We love Maggie, people.
  2. Rejoiced in the lovely fact that I picked up another 8 subscribers since yesterday. Everybody say, “HiiiIIIiii, New Subscribers!” We love New Subscribers, people.
  3. Cleared my Google Reader.
  4. Read a few blogs that I have bookmarked but not yet in Google Reader.
  5. Wasted some time in Google Analytics, SiteMeter, and StatCounter.
  6. Wasted some more time in Blissfully Domestic. p.s. I have some really exciting news about this website I can’t announce yet, but soon. I don’t want to jinx it.
  7. Remodeled my sidebar with Tabbed Widgets. That alone took a couple hours.
  8. Cleaned out my inbox on my hotmail, my yahoo, and my cantrememberdiddly.
  9. Unenthusiastically watched the goings-on in Twitter. Clicked through to several Tweeple’s blog posts that weren’t in my Google Reader.
  10. Went through old blog posts adding categories to the ones I had filed under “x”, where “x” equals “default category chosen because I couldn’t be bothered to add appropriate categories in the first place which would seem like a bad thing until I need something to procrastinate writing a blog post during NaBloPoMo.”
  11. Watched Giants vs. Patriots with vague disinterest.
  12. Sorted and put away papers on my computer desk.
  13. Put autumn candy in my glass candle holders. Candy corn, pumpkins, and caramels with sticks. Hawsum. Lit a whole bunch of candles in the living room. Thought, Hmmmm, caramel.
  14. Went to the grocery store and got popcorn, ice cream, and a caramel apple with peanuts.
  15. Ate the caramel apple with peanuts.
  16. Went through my pictures in Bridge half-heartedly searching for inspiration.
  17. Looked through the folder full of pictures I’ve had since March to write my how to do a nine-patch machine quilt. Saw a picture of my gramma’s sewing scissors and remembered that was when I lost them.
  18. Turned my couch upside down and unstapled the bottom material to see if Gramma’s sewing scissors fell through the cracks and inside the couch. Nope.
  19. Sat for a good five minutes thinking about how I will always spell scissors correctly, because I still remember my Speak & Spell spelling it out in that monotone computer voice.
  20. Played in Photoshop. Added Hunky’s goatee to my face. No, you can’t see it.
  21. Well, ok, maybe you can, but later. Damn, that would have been a good post right there. Dory. FAIL.
  22. Put a load of wash in the dryer and another in the washer.
  23. Got really desperate and mixed two different bags of potting soil and re-potted two of my ivys.
  24. Decided I need to buckle down and get it done. Went to flickr looking for inspiration.
  25. Then…

Hunky: Are you writing anything yet?

Dory: No, I’m in flickr looking for inspiration.

Hunky: Would you like me to take my pants down?

Dory: Would you like me to blog about it?

Hunky: *sigh* I’m going to bed.

I am a WORLD CLASS procrastinator. You DO NOT want to take me on. I will open a big stinking BARREL of PROCRASTINATE on your ass.

Weekly Winners 10/26 – 11/01

I’m going to start doing yet another photo meme called Weekly Winners sponsored by Sarcastic Mom. I’ll be posting my favorite photos that I took that previous week. I’ll still do Wordless Wednesday, but probably feature artsy-fartsy pics on there, and then Weekly Winners to wrap up my week. You probably won’t notice any difference with the amount I’m actually writing and I’ll post about the same amount of pictures; I’ll just be a little more organized about it. I’m so glad you guys put up with me. 🙂

Here we go with the inaugural edition (I may have been watching a little too much West Wing lately) of

Link to Weekly Winners

Hunky sure cleans up nice!


Elli’s little JRT burrowing instinct went nuts
when she found this huge pile of leaves!
Hunky and I got a good laugh out of her diving in
and then under the pile looking for goodness-knows-what.


Here’s more Weekly Winners!

Sign o’ the times

Just a quick post, I know you’re about to fall over to see me blogging on a Sunday. But.

Yesterday we went out to Hunky’s Mom’s house to celebrate a couple family birthdays. When we walked in, the first thing we saw was this…


This means YOU, bub.


Do NOT test her on this. She WILL beat you with Hot Wheels track.

I love that she had to do that. It makes me proud of our family.

Later, we were discussing music and I went to
Google some lyrics real quick to figure out the name of a song.081025_203746.jpg
Have I mentioned that my dog has some serious attachment issues?

VERY SERIOUS attachment issues.
Perhaps, Certainly, some separation anxiety as well.

Then the boys and their cousin tried to take on the old man.
Elli and Cindy get all kinds of worried when they ‘wrassle’.
You can imagine the noise and the house shaking.

If you’ll excuse me, I need to go apply some Ben-Gay to my husband’s back. *pointed look*

Rip it, roll it, and punch it, dude. (Oh my gosh, what IS that SMELL?!)

If I opened my mind any more, my brains would fall right out on the floor.

I’m getting so tired of the political emails flying around with Lies and Opinions dressed for the Halloween party as Facts. I’m going to make an inbox rule: all emails with either “McCain” or “Obama” in them will go directly to a folder named “Shuddup and Bite Me.”

Seriously, how can anyone at this stage in the game send an email that accuses Obama of being a no-birth-certificate-havin’ Muslim baby-killer? *cringes at the search engine traffic that will surely ensue*

HunkyDory tries to keep things light, yet indulges in serious conversation, too.

Dory: 10:49
Hunky: 5:19  Where you is Woman?!
Dory: 5:19  (Autoreply) Out and about running errands… might be driving; might not… IM me to see
Hunky: 6:32  i need this:
Dory: 6:33  *orders right away* finally, an answer to our prayers for more comfortable instances of marital union
Hunky: 6:43 I am pro-life, and will always be pro-life. But I refuse to be held captive by mis-definitions which hold “pro-life” to be merely the protection of the unborn. Community — loving one’s neighbor — is in the Christian sense something that has no boundaries. I am responsible for my neighbor, whomever that neighbor may be. And while I will not say “a Christian cannot vote for Candidate X”, I will say that to fail to think through some of these issues very, very carefully before repeating as biblical the boilerplate of Carl Rove / John McBush is singularly non-discerning. And I think that I, too, have the Spirit of God.~ Jon
Hunky: 6:43  Jon Trotter
Hunky: 6:43  I like that definition
Dory: 6:43  very eloquent
Hunky: 6:44  Meanwhile, the Supreme Court since 1980 (when the Repubs took over and — except for the Clinton era — kept the White House, has not made any significant change to Roe v. Wade.
Further, if Roe were “flipped,” what we’d have then is a state by state ruling on abortion. Likely outcome, not radically different than what we have now, except for a few states whom would outlaw it.
Further yet, the term “Pro-life” is one which only has staying power if as a culture we make as extravagant an effort on behalf of born children and their single mothers as we’re making for the unborn children. Republicans are astonishingly obtuse on this point, as are many Evangelicals. “Don’t use my tax money to help that mother financially!” Oh, but do make sure she has the baby, despite having no support structure around her to even care for herself, much less raise the child? Hypocrisy.
Hunky: 6:44  That came before
Hunky: 6:47  That’s not what Republicans believe and as the Republicans go, so goes the Christian Right
Dory: 6:48  “Christian” and “Democrat” are not mutually exclusive, as much as the church would like them to be.
Hunky: 6:55  Actually it might be as much as the Republicans might like them to be mutually exclusive.

My name is Dory, and I approve this IM.

I welcome your comments; heck, sometimes I beg for your comments. But if you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all. Don’t be a jackass, please.

Don’t be that guy.

Nobody likes that guy.

In. Mah. Damn. HOUSE.

I’ve been having a pretty hard time with the idea of having an almost teenager. But it’s kind of bittersweet. I will miss his baby-ness and his boy-ness, but I dearly love the lower maintenance version of my manchild.

I no longer have to worry about providing some sort of foodular sustinance about every four hours for my youngling. On Saturday mornings, the fruitbat of my loins gets up, get dressed, takes meds, makes and eats his own breakfast, and quietly (hoo buddy, if that lesson didn’t take some stellar parenting technique ass whuppin’!) watches cartoons. I, on the other hand, am free to sleep until I’m damn good and ready to haul my lazy ass out of bed. He mows the lawn. He does chores (most of the time without any threats negative reinforcement). Today I went to Tarzhay and picked up some Noxema pads for his first zit, and because I’m just that cool, a Rubik’s Cube. You know, for Just Because day. I was feeling kind of nostalgic.

That stopped the moment I picked him up from school.

He came walking up to the car with a friend, and much to my surprise, said friend enters my vehicle. *blink* *blink blink* Ah, what’s the happy-haps, man?

He indignantly replied, “Mom, I asked you about this on Wednesday.”

“Aaaand, could you enlighten me as to my response, because it completely escapes my memory.”

“I said, ‘Mom, I wondered, can Friend come stay the night Friday’ and you said, ‘Ok, let me ask Dad.'”

“Aaaand, somehow this translated directly into ‘Sure thing, son, we’re on?!'”


Hunky had been on the phone so he needed to be brought up to speed. As soon as he was, he said, “You know your Mom forgets things, and that if her answer involves talking to me about it, that is not the green light.”

Resignedly, because we’re complete and utter lame-os who must be grudgingly tolerated, “Ok,” he says.

So we drove home, and all went into the house and scattered; the boys to do their thing, and HunkyDory to do their thing. (That would be goofing around on the Innernets on each of their respective computers. Sheesh.) Before they scattered like roaches when you turn a light on, I unceremoniously tossed the Noxema pads and Rubik’s Cube at Rocky with a terse, “Use morning and night.” Hrmph. Damn nostalgia.

About an hour went by, and all of a sudden, I wrinkled my nose and inhaled a little more deeply.


OMG, something’s on fire!

Just then, Hunky came out of his cave office, and said, “Do you smell cigarette smoke?”

Oh. No. He. DIH-ENT! Uh, duh, I’m a smoker! I know cigarette smoke, especially when it’s not supposed to be in my damn house. Oh, haaay-ells, no, kid; I don’t even get to smoke in my damn house!

“Uh, yeah.”

“Where’s it coming from?”

At the same moment, our heads turned to the closed bathroom door about 10 feet away. And our jaws dropped. Then our voices.

“Would Friend actually be smoking in the bathroom?!”

“Are you shitting me?! He couldn’t be that dumb, could he?!”

[Pause for a second, because I want to share a thought that popped in my mind. HunkyDory on Whose Line Is It Anyway? and we’re doing the skit where you can only ask questions. Ok, moving on.]

“You wouldn’t think so, would you?”

“What are we going to do about it?”

“We, who, white man?!”

“You’re going to leave me to deal with this alone?!?!”

“Is a Bear Catholic?!?!”

“Aw, shit.”

[Pause again, ha, he loses! Dory wins! The crowd roars! Ok, moving on.]

So Friend comes out of the bathroom. I’ll save you the gory details, but there was a very stern talking-to, in which it was communicated that not only was smoking a really bad idea, but smoking in someone else’s non-smoking house was an even worse idea. I threw in my two cents by grumpily reiterating my point that I didn’t even get to smoke in my own damn house. Friend’s Dad was called. (Times like this make me really ok with the fact that I can’t use the phone anymore.) And Friend was picked up about a half hour later.

Because I don’t even get to smoke in my own damn house. That’s the important part to take away from this experience. Riiiiight.

Rip it, roll it, and punch it, dude. Please keep all body parts within the vehicle. And a reminder that no smoking is allowed on this ride; if smoke is detected, the sprinklers will automatically turn on, and an electric shock will go off under the offender’s ass. Because I don’t even get to smoke in my own damn house. Thank you for your cooperation.