life got away from me.

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So much to post about! Tomorrow, I leave for Disney World 2013 part 2. :) It came up so fast because I’ve been so busy with work, work, work. Most days, I seriously work all day, then I go home and work 3-4 hours in the evening, and some weekends too. Long days but decent money. So this trip is going to be awesome!

A lot has been going on, too. Adam and I went with his family to Iowa for a weekend. It was great. Beautiful weather, great shopping, and good girl time for girls with my sister-in-law and her friend. Lola is getting so big and she’s still as adorable as ever. :)

Lola is AWESOME

It was nice to catch up with family and friends and get out of Chicago for a weekend. And the Des Moines farmer’s market? HOLY CRAP. The thing spans multiple blocks and streets… they only had asparagus for produce really, but there was so much other great stuff, like jewelry and clothing and mini donuts and wine. Especially blackberry wine. Mmmmm.

Adam and I went to see Marina and The Diamonds at the Riviera. It was a sold out show. I had to work that day, and the concert was general admission, so I knew we’d be in a long, long line. Except we totally didn’t because Adam ran into an old friend who was part of the local crew, and he got us to the front of the line. That didn’t make the people who’d spent the night there very happy–but they needn’t have worried. Adam and I were so not into being in the mob on the floor–we went straight to the balcony and grabbed seats!

It was a fantastic show. Charli XCX opened for her and I hadn’t realized that I’d already heard and liked a few of her songs.

Charli XCX

But Marina. OH MY GOD Marina. She is a queen. She is a goddess. She puts on a great show, and she looks like she’s having a blast doing it. Love her. So much.

Marina & The Diamonds

My yoga group had its official closing circle May 24. It was really nice. We did our thesis presentations, talked about the program and how we were going to use the new knowledge.

Closing Circle Official

Then we all went out for sushi! First we posed for pictures:

Ariel and Amy
ariel and amy

Genevieve, me, Reshma
genevieve, me, reshma

Graham and Angie
graham and his fiancee angie

Then I ate this!!

Namasake Don
namasake don

And this!

Passion Fruit Torte
passion fruit torte

Yummy yummy yummy!!!! :D

I got a couple of really cool things in the mail. One was this really cool iPad cover. My original cover is red, but I really wanted a pink one. So I got the Snugg iPad 2 Case, which I LOVE. Oh my God. It’s so compact and professional looking, but still fun. It’s got the smart cover thing, so I can close it and know it’s going to switch off… yeah, I’m really happy with it. :)

photo

I also got a really awesome tee shirt from Dress United, which is a place you can get custom tees made. I went with a design of Ganesha, the remover of obstacles, and this is what I ended up with:

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The back looks like this:

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I really like the shirt. I wish I’d gotten a bigger size because the cut does run small (I believe this is a size M.) Clothes shopping is a challenge for me because sizes are NOT consistent across the board. I almost always have to try on, because sizes aren’t even consistent within the same stores sometimes! So, I can wear an XS tee shirt in one place and a L from somewhere else… I tend to go with an M because that’s usually pretty safe, but in this case, I needed to size up. I still like the shirt, though. The design really pops and the colors are vivid and bright! If you’re looking to get a custom-designed tee shirt, You can get one for 30% off and free shipping if you use this link and the coupon code BLOG30OFF4U.

The lilacs have finally bloomed in my neighborhood, but they’re already going away. Why do I wait all spring for them only for them to wither away not even a week later? So sad. I’m lucky I got photos, though!

Lilacs!!!!

I make it a point to take huge sniffs of the lilac bushes in my neighborhood whenever I can because I love them so much. Now, I’d LOVE to think that once the lilacs are out that the weather is finally broken, but nope. It didn’t even get past 55F today. And it was rainy and cold. COME ON. It’s JUNE already.

Thank God I’m going to Orlando tomorrow, where the forecasted high is 86F. SO looking forward to the heat. It’s kinda messed up that it’s June and I still have to go to Florida to warm up…..

Anyway. I’m just about all packed. Which is kind of a miracle considering I usually start packing the night before for these things. Aidan is playing the new Kirby game I got him, and my mom is in the kitchen washing glasses for some reason. She’s all packed and so is Aidan, except for things like electronics, which are currently charging, medications that need to be taken in the morning, and toiletries which will be used in the morning. But tomorrow this time, we’ll all be in Orlando chilling. So excited! :) I don’t know how we’re all managing to act so calm….

Anyway, that’s all for now. Till next time! :)

I received free products from Dress United and Snugg in exchange for my honest and unbiased reviews.

So Much For That

I thought I would try to get my body back on to a normal sleep schedule. Because for the past several weeks, I’ve been staying up all night and sleeping well into the afternoon. Even though what I’m doing in the middle of the night is no different than what I’d do during the day (and sometimes I am even more productive!), I still feel guilty about it. I know I’m a night owl at heart, but I still feel weird about it.

I know this is the way I am built and I shouldn’t be ashamed of it… but the world just doesn’t really WORK this way. It doesn’t really cater to night owls. There are some 24 hour stores around, and it is much nicer to drive in the middle of the night (unless the panhandlers are still out and begging me to roll down my window and give them money…AS IF), but I can’t go to a yoga class in the middle of the night. I can’t answer urgent emails from Moksha or VSA in the middle of the night. But now that I think about it… maybe it’s OK for me to be the way I am. The nature of the work I do–most of it is from home and I have enough time that I can work on it overnight. Even if I have a meeting at Moksha, they know my sleep schedule, so they try to accommodate it. My latest apprenticeship is in the evenings and most of my workshop manager shifts are afternoon or evening.

Sunday night, I took a Tylenol PM (well, the CVS version anyway) at 10:30pm. I slathered on some Arbonne unwind lotion; dabbed lavender essential oils on my heart, my temples, my neck, and behind my ears; checked my email; played LEGO Harry Potter until just before midnight (I gave myself a midnight cut off); and climbed into bed. Had a snack and read The Hunger Games until I fell asleep. And I woke up at 10:25am. Which is an improvement over 3:15pm.

It’s a good thing I was up because ALA was announcing their awards and Adam got a Stonewall Honor for his book Sparks (written under a pen name SJ Adams). How exciting is that? VERY exciting is the answer we’re looking for here, just so you know.

I did not mention that by 1pm I was super, super tired. I was frustrated because I can be wide awake in the middle of the night but during the day (especially during the winter) I just want to sleep. I want to burrow under an electric blanket and live in dreamland. So I took a nap. I set my alarm for 2pm, but I was pleasantly surprised to find myself waking up at 1:39pm! I guess I just needed a power nap. :) Went to a short meeting at 3pm, ran a couple of errands, then we headed out to the burbs.

We celebrated Adam’s Stonewall Honor the best way we know how: By hitting some bookstores. We went to Anderson’s, where I picked up 7 CLUES TO WINNING YOU by Kristin Walker and BITTERSWEET by Sarah Ockler. Then we went to Half-Price Books, where I got 10 books, 9 CDs, and a computer game. I am so happy. I have a lot of new stuff to read and a lot of music to listen to. I bought Zoo Tycoon, but that’s mostly for Aidan to play when he’s here. Oh and my LEGO Harry Potter Years 5-7 arrived in the mail. I’m nearly 80% done with Years 1-4 (I’ve completed the levels, just need to get the collectibles), so I’ll probably start 5-7 sometime this week. Wheeee!

Today's Half Price Books book haul. Half Price Books CD Haul.

But now I am back to my old habits already. It’s 2:40am and I am wide awake. I just dabbed on the lavender (forgot to do the Tylenol PM tonight) and I’m hoping it will work its magic sooner rather than later. In the meantime, I will skip out on starting one of my new books right now–I’ll NEVER go to sleep if I start a new book. I’ll read The Hunger Games, and old favorite, and HOPEFULLY I’ll go to sleep and end up not sleeping past noon. I want to go to yoga. Which is at noon. And I need to shower before.

So I’m thinking that for now, it’s OK for me to be this way? It’s not like I have a 9am-5pm job (although in Chicago it seems more like 8am-9pm in a lot of jobs), and most of the things I have to do are in the afternoons and evenings. So I guess there is no point in trying to fight how my body naturally works, especially because it’s not hurting anyone.

When I’m at Disney World, I’ll have to take care. Don’t want to be sleeping the whole day away there! But I have time to fix that.

Ha. This pointless entry brought to you by slight heartburn, an afternoon dose of Lexapro, and the letters B-A-N-A-N-A.

Tis The Season For an Aidan

Starshine

How was your Thanksgiving? Mine was really good. My favorite part, of course, was that Aidan was here. We had a LOT of fun! We hung out, we watched Christmas programs, we braved the crowds on Black Friday and did some shopping, and I got in a lot of laughing and cuddling and good times. I suck them up now because I know they will end sooner than I’m ready.

I didn’t take photos of the spread, but we had turkey that Adam had brined in a solution from the Spice House (the turkey was good on Thanksgiving, but it was AMAZING Friday night). We had stuffing, cornbread dressing (gotta have my dressing; stuffing just doesn’t do it for me), corn, mashed potatoes, macaroni and cheese, cranberry sauce (homemade by Adam and awesome), and apple pie. Jeff and Deborah brought over a tart and some sweet potato fritters–I didn’t even get a chance to try them. Jen bought over a plate full of yummy rolls. We had sparkling blueberry juice and sparkling cranberry apple cider to drink, as well as the cranberry Sierra Mist. Everything was wonderful. We let our food digest while watching Twilight with RiffTrax before tackling the dessert. Good times.

Friday, Aidan and I went back and forth about whether or not we wanted to go out. He finally said “I want to go shopping.” He said he’d never been Black Friday shopping before and he thinks his dad won’t take him. So, we bundled up and headed on out! (And NOT to Walmart. Hell no.)

Heading out for Black Friday fun!
aidan and me on the way to state street
we’re waiting on the train, which came really quickly for once
so i had to rush and take this photo
that’s why i look crazy. lol.

I told him that we needed to go to shop for other people, not for him. But he talked me into getting him a stuffed Wreck It Ralph anyway. Hmph. Oh well.

We made our way to Macy’s. He didn’t really want to look at the store windows this year (Although he made sure I was OK with that. I was.). He did write his letter to Santa, though. Macy’s has a table set up every year and they donate money for every letter sent. :)

Thinking of what to Write to Santa
thinking hard.

Letter to Santa Mailed!
mailed!

We made our way through Holiday Lane, which I like to do every year, but we didn’t go see Santa. I didn’t even try–figured the line would be too long, and besides, Aidan was getting hungry.

Aidan, Nutcracker, Me
aidan and me at holiday lane
he was cranky and hungry
at least, until we made our way to the toy aisle

We also went up to see the Great Tree, which he and I called the “BASST”. Short for Big Ass Tree. But really an excuse for me to cuss. ;)

Aidan and the Big Ass Tree

We actually had a good time shopping. We didn’t head out til around 230pm, so I figured most of the insane deal hunters would be home and sleeping. Most of the stores we went into had really cheerful workers (the ones in Old Navy seemed to be running on pure adrenaline or drugs or something) and also cheerful customers. There was only ONE store with a pissed off cashier–I didn’t take it personally though. Only one of the stores was so crowded I started to freak out, but the others were manageable. One wasn’t crowded at all.

We spent Saturday evening having a Christmas program marathon. We started with Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer (where we tried to figure out what was going on with the doll on the Island of Misfit Toys), moved on to Frosty the Snowman and Frosty Returns, then plopped in another DVD and watched Santa Claus is Coming to Town and Mr. Magoo’s Christmas Carol. I could have kept going, but Aidan turned the TV off LOL.

I had so much fun with Aidan. This will be his LAST CHRISTMAS in single digit ages; he turns 10 on December 30! Hard to believe that I have a kid who’s about to be 10. Holy cow. But let me tell you why he is so amazing.

Last night, even though he’d had dinner, he decided that he wanted spaghetti. At 10:48pm. (He’s a night owl like me and on vacation time, I let him stay up.) I really didn’t want to cook that late, but I decided I’d show him how to get it started. I told him how to fill up the pot 3/4 of the way with water (he hasn’t learned fractions yet so he was like “WTF Mom”), and then he broke the noodles into the water. I added the butter and salt and oil, and he stirred the noodles. It was a team effort. I made enough for him to have a serving and a half. When I fixed his plate, I asked if he wanted everything in the pot, and he said “No.” And you know why? He told me that he wanted to make sure I got some even though he could have eaten all of it.

He is the kindest, most compassionate kid I’ve ever met, and I’m really truly hoping the teenage years don’t steal that away from him completely.

The next time I see him will be Christmas Day. 29 Days! In the meantime, I get to make Christmas. That will keep me busy and happy until then.

Random McRandomness

Lilacs
there are lilacs!!!!

I had a good weekend. I spent Friday relaxing and reading. It looks so pretty outside, but it’s still so cold. I don’t know about you, but 50F in January feels a lot warmer than 50F in April, and the temps have barely been making it out of the 50s these days. I know this is typical here, and I know I whine about this every year, but the fact is that I am so ready for it to be warm that it’s not even funny. Oh well. At any rate, I didn’t go anywhere Friday because I just wanted to stay inside where it was warm and dry and full of cuddly cats.

It’s not fair that it looks like this outside:

Around The Neighborhood

…but feels like this:

Wicker Park

(At least the lilacs are out, right? They smell so good, you guys! I love lilacs!)

Anyway.

Speaking of cats. Helena is back to peeing in bad places again.

It had been years since she’s done that (although I’m just suspecting that maybe she’s been doing it all along and I’ve been mistakenly blaming Crookshanks, who is more apt to poop in a naughty place rather than pee, but he has a history of that as well), but it started again when I bought a bath mat for the tub. You see, our tub has gotten slippery over the years and I didn’t like feeling like I was going to slip when I went for a shower. So I got a bath mat from TJ Maxx which was probably my first mistake because it had a nasty skunky rubbery scent to it. But it was comfy and kept me from slipping! Then, Helena started peeing on it. We got rid of the mat and she just kept peeing in the tub. Now, as far as a cat peeing somewhere naughty, the tub isn’t the worst place, right? I even joked that it was time to start toilet training her. She had the room right, you know?

But then it got worse. Adam got a new couch, identical to the one we had before. (Don’t ask what happened to the other one. It’s a long sordid story best left in the past.) Not the most comfortable couch ever, but it does the job. Except I started noticing a pee smell from the slipcover. Adam would wash it, and then it would appear again, this time in a different spot. We removed the slipcover, and Adam put a table cloth over the couch. The table cloth looks and feels like fabric, but it does not absorb liquid. If a cat pees on it, the pee gets on his/her foot, thus theoretically discouraging further elimination on the couch. HAH. HA HA HA HA!! See, I wasn’t completely convinced it wasn’t Crookshanks because as I said, he has a pretty checkered history, that one. THEN Adam actually CAUGHT Helena in the act.

Seriously? Seriously? WTF Helena. She’d been so good all these years! (Or maybe not, now that I think of it.) We have THREE litter boxes for those brats. I’m tired of cleaning up after cats who can’t/won’t eliminate in the proper places. Hmph. Maybe I’ll just start peeing anywhere *I* feel like it. How would you like that, huh?

Cats are the gifts that keep on giving. IN THE ANNOYANCE DEPARTMENT. Why does this happen whenever I practice yoga at home??

Every Damn Time!
every damn time!

Hmph. Well I’ll just keep lowering from chatarunga (which is hard enough as it is!) on to him every day and see if that changes his tune.

They’re lucky they’re cute and cuddly and so darn loveable.

Yesterday, I went to bookstore because although I have a couple of eBook copies of The Secret Garden, I really wanted a hard copy. I found a paperback that wasn’t too expensive, and a copy of the Bhagavad Gita that was also very nicely priced. :) Yesterday evening, I watched Juno and Mean Girls, played some games, and read The Secret Garden–the hard copy. I PARTY HARD, Y’ALL.

So, randomly. I LOVE getting packages. And sometimes that means I go shopping online just so I can have packages arrive for me. Today, I finally used some of the $35 I had in Amazon credits to get a copy of The Secret Garden/A Little Princess DVD combo pack, a bottle of Dr. Bronner’s baby mild soap, and the black and white Skull Shores Frankie Stein Monster High doll. So excited! I used to collect all the Monster High dolls, but now it’s just out of control. There are too many. I decided to focus only on Frankie Stein because she’s just awesome.

Frankie Stein
This pic is outdated. I’ve gotten at least one new one since.
I wish I was more creative with posing them. Some people are great at it.

Once I get this particular doll, my collection will be complete, at least until they come out with a new Frankie Stein. Then my sights will be set on the Katniss Barbie. WHO IS AWESOME.

Today I read and read and read. Then I headed out for a hatha yoga class. The class was fantastic, even though we had to do that blasted utthita parsvakonasana which I hate! (There are some poses which make me all verklempt when I have to do them, this is one of them. I should make a post about that someday.) Anyway, I was rewarded with a lot of wonderful forward folds and deep twists, and you guys know how I feel about forward folds, right? The teacher would say something like: “When you’re ready, come out of the pose” and I’d be thinking “But I’m not ready to come out of this fold!” But I’d come out because well, I didn’t want to be stuck behind everyone else in the class, right?

So, Sunday is winding down and another week begins. Here’s what’s on my plate:

· yoga classes
· yoga teacher training
· yoga teacher training lecture
· yoga teaching practice
· library
· urban priestess workshop
· master teacher roundtable
· reading
· homework
· farmville (shut up, it’s fun and relaxing)
· life

What about you?

Cranky Lady/Adventures in Shopping

Grarrrrr!

Once upon a time, I loved, absolutely loved going to a store, any story (except maybe grocery) and shopping. I loved browsing the aisles, picking out new things, taking that bag after the transaction was completed. YAY shiny new things for me! Or for Aidan! Going to the mall was an OCCASION. All those shiny stores full of shiny new things under one shiny roof! Someone hold me!

It’s not so much fun anymore. My patience has run the eff out.

I went to the mall to do some shopping for fun, and also get some errands taken care of at the attached Target. (Yes, this mall has a Target as an anchor store, which is kind of brilliant if you ask me. The other anchor is Kohl’s.) I don’t know WHY I thought going to the mall on a Sunday evening would be a good idea. It wasn’t. People were walking like turtles (and spread out, of course), and by the time I’d finally get around them, wild children would be all over the place, and I’d be scared of tripping over one or more of them. Entire huge families would bunch up and block entryways and aisles. And for some inexplicable reason, every few yards there were trash receptacles IN THE MIDDLE OF THE AISLES. Not off to the sides, but right in the middle. For people to trip over. REAL SMART. Not. I’d started off excited and looking forward to finding some treasures, but after a few stores, my patience was gone. I had to get OUT of the mall and into the Target, where things were just a little bit better (except in the toy aisle. Aye Dios Mio.).

People, do you think it’s too much to ask that parents keep their children in check in stores? I spend more time dodging random unwatched kids who are running and screaming and laughing than I do waiting to check out! This is not just in the toy aisle, by the way. Seems like no matter where I go, there are rogue children running all over the place.

WHY? I was never allowed to go running all wild and crazy through a store when I was a kid. In fact, the first time my parents let me and my sister go to the toy aisle without them was a BIG FREAKING DEAL and we knew we’d better not screw it up or we’d never be allowed to do it again!

I know this is me, but when I am browsing, I like to be alone. I don’t want to share that space with anyone else. So how come, every single time I find a deserted aisle and start to browse, some random kids come bouncing right over to where I am, followed by a mom who looks like she’s going to run me the hell over if I don’t move RIGHT NOW, and they seem to have an urgent need for the exact thing I was looking at/researching/browsing? GO AWAY I yell in my mind. I was looking at these spaghetti noodles FIRST! Of course I don’t say that, and I move aside to make room and I’m polite and everything. But inside, I am irritated and frustrated and impatient.

I’m honestly thisclose to just… buying everything online from now on. Ordering my groceries from PeaPod or something like that. Adam typically goes to the store for groceries, but he only goes to Aldi, and there are certain things that I only like the name brand of. But going to the store, dealing with other people? It stresses me out anymore. I don’t even care to clothes shop anymore. I walk into a store, see all the choices on the racks, and I get overwhelmed. That happened to me tonight in Forever 21. And Aeropostale. (I’m pretty sure I’ve outgrown Aeropostale anyway.) I pretty much turned around and left. (I DON’T freak out in Old Navy, funnily enough, but that’s because their merchandise is laid out in a way that MAKES SENSE.)

So there you have it. I don’t enjoy shopping anymore. :( Well, that’s not necessarily true. I still enjoy the act of acquiring new things, but I don’t like going to a brick and mortar store (unless it’s a book store or Old Navy) and dealing with other customers and their wild, screaming children. I don’t know if people are just more irritating in general, or if I’m just more crabby about it. At any rate, I’d much rather do it online. Or better yet, indie. Sometimes the shipping costs are worth my sanity. Plus I love to get packages in the mail.

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