Thursday, July 29, 2010

Blogging Break

Bad blogger. Bad, bad, bad blogger.

I promise I will be back soon with something to say.

I think.

I hope.

Yeah, I will.

I think.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

My Very Annoying Bucket List

Recently, I read the book “The Happiness Project” by Gretchen Rubin. It was very inspirational and left me with many things to ponder in my own life.

One of the “happiness increasers” (that’s my word, not Gretchen’s) that she shares in the book is how delicious it feels to really commit to a goal—and then, of course, accomplish it!

So I got to thinking about my goals—and then about my own personal bucket list.

For inspiration, I Googled “bucket list” to see the ideas that other people had.

Here were some examples:

--Break a world record
--Experience weightlessness
--Extreme skydiving
--Feed the sharks
--Ride a camel
--Ride in a hot air balloon
--Be a contestant on Survivor

Yikes! I don’t think that’s quite what I had in mind. For one thing, I really really really really hate heights and especially flying. Also, I’m scared of sharks, I heard that camels spit, and I am a huge wimp who could never last more than a day in the wilderness without my allergy pills, my microwave oven, and my sweet-smelling herbal shampoo.

Besides, I was thinking more about those types of annoying and/or seemingly insurmountable tasks that I often think that I’d like to do, but somehow never get around to it.

For example:

-- Clean out our hall closet and ditch or recycle stuff—like the green bar of soap shaped like a boot that I got in a White Elephant Christmas gift exchange at work a few years ago.

--Go to the doctor for my plantar fasciitis pain and get that damn cortisone shot, already!

--Clean up my blog links and get rid of old, inactive links—as well as add some links to blogs I’ve been enjoying but keep forgetting to link to. (Bad Alice and Yellowdog Granny, I’m thinking of you two!)

--Organize our bookshelves and get rid of books that I will never, ever, ever read.

--Somehow convince Iwanski to get rid of the books that he will never, ever, ever read. (This would truly be a miracle. Iwanski is an even bigger packrat than I am.)

--Finally take the three big garbage bags of “to donate” clothes that have been sitting in our bedroom for two months to Goodwill or Salvation Army.

--Tear the house apart looking for the tiny key (which has been lost for two years) which opens the locked filing cabinet in our living room

--After failing to find the tiny key, find out how to pick a lock so that I can open aforementioned filing cabinet.

--Clean out said filing cabinet.

Whew! I’m exhausted just looking at this list.

However, in less than a week I am going to check one item off the list. I FINALLY made a doctor appointment for my plantar fasciitis. And dammit, I’m going to get that shot, even if I have to scream “I WANT CORTISONE!” at the top of my lungs. I’m sure the doctor would love that…but I am SO ready for this pain to go away.

So hell, at least I am doing one item on my Very Annoying Bucket List.

So what should I do next? Clean out the hall closet? Organize our bookshelves? Find out how to pick a lock?

Whatever I decide to do, I think I will have to approach the task with an open mind…and an open bottle of wine.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Baby, It's HOT Outside!

OK, I love hot weather. I really do. But it is like, OVEN hot out there. Perhaps Iwanski said it best on his Facebook status when he said that it’s “Kirstie-Alley-butt-crack hot out there.” That made me laugh!

But seriously, folks, it has been one hot summer. Last summer, it seemed like we hardly ever hit 80 degrees…but this year it’s been in the 90’s+ for several days.

I know it sounds like I’m complaining—and yes, I guess I am.

Just do me a favor and don’t remind me about this when I’m bitching about the icy 10-degree days in February. Please.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Random Gatitas

I take pictures of my two cats (Autumn and Hattie) all the time, but I just realized that I never, EVER do anything with them. So now I'm doing something with them.


Yoga Kitty

Trader Joe's Kitty

Stoned Kitty

Snuggie Kitty

Fat-Ass Cat

Comfy Kitty

Clothes Basket Kitty

Sunshine Kitties**

**Okay, so Iwanski took this last picture--but I WISH I had! I really love that one.

I'm really not a crazy cat-lady....but they definitely make me smile.

Friday, July 9, 2010

On the Wild Side

Right now, I’m jealous of every kid under the age of thirteen.

Why am I jealous of them, you ask? Because they get to spend the entire summer just PLAYING.

Think about it. When was the last time you had three months off, just to while away the hours, with no responsibilities except to come inside the house for lunch and suppertime (where the food is already there, prepared for you; you don’t need to do a thing except eat), and just have FUN?

I think the last time I had that experience was probably when I was about twelve years old. Once thirteen hit, I was an awkward, nerdy teenager hooked on soap operas and longing for some boy to give me the time of day. Playing outside in the summer sun no longer held so much appeal for me.

But before the age of thirteen, I was a summertime wild child, free to do whatever I wanted to do, whenever I wanted to do it (within limits, of course). Enya has this song called “Wild Child,” and whenever I hear it, I am instantly transported back to that free feeling of being eight years old, running through sprinklers, riding my bike all over our little town, my messy hair blowing wildly in the breeze, and picking little green apples off our neighbor’s apple tree (mean old Mrs. Schroeder HATED that, and we were scared of her—but that made it all the more appealing to us, to try to sneak the sour yet succulent fresh apples from that little old tree without her catching us).

It was a wild time, and a happy time.

But adulthood has its happy times, too. Even though there are the adult responsibilities and worries of working, paying the bills, and doing household chores…there are also the extra freedoms that come from being an adult. Like being able to eat a cookie whenever you want and not have to ask your Mom or Dad if you can have one. Or deciding whenever you want to get together with your friends, without having to ask permission first. Or being able to run stark-naked through your house without anyone scolding you. (Not that I ever do that, mind you! Heh heh heh heh…) Or how about being able to watch whatever t.v. show or movie you want to watch, any time? Hell, you can even watch movies with swearing and nudity now. Hell, you can even swear now without anyone yelling at you—and dammit, that’s awesome!

And you can drink beer. Mmmmm….beer…….

But I think the absolute best part about being an adult is that you have more experience with life, so you can stop and really savor a moment—any moment—and you can really understand how beautiful and sweet that life can be. Sure, a child can appreciate moments, too—but not in the same way an adult can. Children don’t have that perspective that adults generally have, the perspective that says, “This moment will not happen again, so let me just really take it in and remember it for all of my life.”

And that’s what I did today. After leaving work at noon (yay for summer hours!), I was walking across the Lake Street bridge, and the song “Chicago (My Kind of Town)” came up randomly on my MP-3 player. I paused for a moment and looked down at the river beneath me. There were tourist boats and river taxis and kayakers chuggin’ on down the river, and the sun was glistening on the water’s edge in a beautiful, shimmery sparkle…and I nearly shed a tear as I heard the words:

And each time I leave, Chicago is
Tugging my sleeve…

In that moment, I could never picture myself being anywhere else in the world. I felt profoundly grateful for this city, for this day, and for this moment.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

I Found Him!

There were lots of things to do in Chicagoland today, like feeding your face at the Taste of Chicago, watching the Cubs lose to the Cincinnati Reds, enjoying heavenly barbeque at the Naperville Rib Fest, or enjoying some fun music at the International Festival of Life in Washington Park.

But I didn’t want to do any of those things.

What did I want to do? I wanted to go search for Waldo. Yes, Waldo. The star of the “Where’s Waldo?” children’s books, and four of his friends, were wandering the Millennium Park/Grant Park area between 4-6 today, and there was a contest to try to be one of the first 15 people to find Waldo and snap his picture. (If you did, you’d win an enlarged, screen-printed poster of one of the pages from the books.)

Now, I didn’t care about the contest—I just wanted to find Waldo!

And after about 10 minutes of wandering through Millennium Park, I spotted him!

I punched Iwanski in the arm and yelled excitedly, “There he is!”

We rushed over, and I was thrilled to have my picture taken with Waldo himself.

It truly is the little things that make life worth living.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

It's Magic!

I have a magical power. I bet you didn’t know that…but yes, indeed I do.

My magical power is my amazing ability to always call Iwanski when his hands are soaking wet.

What? I didn’t say it was a particularly useful power.

But seriously, this happens at least two to three times a day. I call Iwanski and he says, “My hands are wet, hold on a second.”

Yesterday, I called him, and he was laughing as he answered the phone.

“What’s so funny?” I inquired.

He explained, “Just a minute ago, I was thinking ‘I’m going to start washing the dishes, but I’ll bet that the minute I get my hands wet, Carla will call’…and then you did!”

“Really?” I laughed. “That is weird.”

“What is with you? Can you just sense that my hands are wet, or something?” he asked.

“I don’t know," I giggled, "but it is pretty strange.”

So there you go. My one magical power.

And now, I must go feed the felines—for their magical power is to annoy the shit out of me while I’m trying to write a blog post.