Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Leaving Home

I don't normally put things like this on here, but this is absolutely amazing. Nathan had to write a poem about an immigrant coming to the New World so long ago. He said he put himself in the person's position. I absolutely love it. This is the first stanza. I'll post the rest when he's finished.

Leaving Home

I step on the boat to depart
Sobbing, my mother waves, goodbye
Silently, I pray that I am not making a mistake
Suddenly I fall, sobbing for hope
Wondering if I'll make it
Wishing I could stay, I float out to sea
Shaking, scared, alone
I go away forever, hoping, dreaming.
-Nathan Haycraft

Friday, May 14, 2010

Undefeated She Remains

This morning I witnessed two cellar spiders performing some sort of bizarre mating ritual. Or...at least I think that's what it was. Their bodies were just a bit different which led me to believe one was in fact male, the other female. I suppressed the urge to smoosh them into oblivion as I watched. Cellar spiders are no threat. It reminded me of an argument. Their legs would entwine, then separate hastily as if the male had accused the female of stealing the blanket and leaving him in the cold. She readily disagreed and retorted with a sort of curling her legs motion and pretty much told him if he didn't like it, he should get his own cover. She was finished with him and the whole bedclothes junk. I think she was just annoyed because her suggestion would mean she would have more laundry. Next time she'll think before she speaks. He casually mentioned that he had been awake half the night trying to get the said blanket, but she would have no more of it. She told him it was about time he was the one lying awake. He snores.

He was stubborn. He would have the last word, but she had other things in mind. He put all eight of his tiny feet together in a huff and waited for a moment. She would relent. He was sure of it. How on Earth could he think such a thing? This was not her argument, he had started it! She furiously started tying his feet together with her web. He saw her trick and quickly dropped about three inches below her on his own silken line.

He must have came to his senses and apologized then because there was a flurry of graceful spins throughout the web they had created together. They weren't near one another...neither touched, but a certain calmness had overtaken them. Cautiously he approached her. She retreated only a small amount, but let him pass her as he ventured up the wall. I had apparently missed something because he then disappeared. She remained motionless, no doubt triumphant in knowing she had drawn an apology from him.

There she still sits. I haven't the heart to kill her. I'll let her bask in the knowledge that in the near future she will be a mommy. Maybe I should throw her a shower...hmmm...

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

A Woman's Wish List

A cup that only runneth over.
A whole yard full of four leafed clover.
Indian givers who don’t take back.
A gallon of water in a paper sack.

The ability to fly without a wing.
A hamper full of only clean things.
A smile that fades only at night.
A window that lets in only the light.

A car that runs on love alone.
Ice cream that doesn’t melt on the cone.
A self mopping floor, a self wiping table.
A guy who’ll give us completely free cable.

A computer that doesn’t lock up on a whim.
A flower that doesn’t wilt on the stem.
No expiration dates, no expired milk.
A self made bed completely of silk.

They think they have us figured out.
That they can please us, they have no doubt.
Oh honey, why do you look so sad?
This list isn't really all that bad.

Aww, babe don’t cry, it’ll be all right,
You’ll have to sleep there only one night.
The couch can be lumpy, and it’s no fun,
But that’s only because we need a new one.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Radiant Red Locks

It's that time again, folks. I blame vanity for this chore. I'm not sure why I wasn't born with lovely red locks to accompany my pale complexion. I personally think hair color companies mixed up genes somewhere just to take my money in some sort of crazy hair brained conspiracy, but that's just me.

I refuse to get my hair colored in a salon and pay three times as much as I could by doing it myself, although it might be a bit easier. It's quite the process, but in the end I'm usually happy with the result.

Normally I open the box and only remove the instructions to retrieve the gloves. I've done this so many times I could recite the steps while dancing the hula and balancing a ball one one foot. Of course, the only thing I would succeed at of those things would be reciting said steps, but one out of three isn't horrible. For only a moment I think about rereading the timing step just to be sure, but usually dismiss it while assuming it's the same as it has been for years. If it ever changes I may be writing a completely different blog about wig shopping or getting my hair stripped.

After mixing the two primary ingredients comes the fun part: application. Our bathroom is about the size of a refrigerator box (slight exaggeration, but not much). If ever a member of our family gains too much weight he or she will have to be buttered up to slip past the sink to make it to the toilet. The application in it's self is, of course, the most difficult. With gloved hands I meticulously cover my head with deep red goo careful not to miss any. In my younger days an overlooked spot here or a missed spot there wouldn't be a big deal. I would simply write it off as if I were expressing my individuality. These days, however, I prefer full coverage.

Before today I had enough hair to cover the heads of 15 newborns or 20 preemies, so this was no small feat. Bumping elbows on the walls and trying not to completely cover everything, I work section by section, unwittingly staining ears, forearms and quite possibly the back of my neck. After all of the solution is on my head I search the mirror one last time for missed spots. I seriously look like I have been in a horrible accident from the forehead up and fully expect my brain to fall out at any given second. I set a timer and survey the bathroom. I'm not sure how it happens, I'm usually very careful, but the bathroom always looks like a small animal has come to a very violent untimely death. I have even unintentionally dyed a spot on a Pomeranian about the size of a quarter. He didn't seem to mind.

After cleaning up the mess, changing my socks and rinsing the goo out of my hair I'm normally pleasantly surprised I didn't completely screw it up. Tonight I will follow these steps to have radiant red locks once more. Stupid vanity.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Just for Today

I'm sure all of you have heard of the 12 Steps of Recovery. Integrated into the steps is something called the Big Book which basically assists recovery efforts and gives ideas on how to recover successfully. At the end of each section there is a daily meditation that an addict vows to do that day to empower them to stay clean. For example, on page 381 of the basic text the mediation reads, "Just for today I will look for opportunities to be of service in everything I do." Page 17 says, "Just for today I will strive to forgive rather than be forgiven. I will try to act in such a way that I feel worthy of self-love."

Today, I am going to list for you my "Just for today" meditations. Please note that this is in no way belittling the 12 Step program or the big book. Just for today I am going to laugh at myself before anyone else has a chance.

Just for today....

...I will look down when I'm walking to avoid stepping on legos, matchbox cars and broken gum ball machine bubbles. This will also aid in a lack of stubbed toes.

...I will tone down my awesomeness as to not make others jealous. I realize how hard it is for them and will try my best to make it easier.

...I will not reflect on the effects of gravity.

...I will shun narcissism and only look in the mirror 3 times (ok, maybe 4, but that's it.)

...I will not take so much joy in killing ants. They are creatures too even if they are little pests.

...I will do my Yoga workout (if it's under 70 degrees in the house and there's time).

...I will unhide all of the people whose statuses I have hidden on Facebook because they annoy me for exactly one hour. It's not my fault if I have to log off afterward.

...I will try not to be such a grammar Nazi. I may even force myself to misspell something. Maybe.

...I will not throw away an ink pen just because it skipped once. I can not be responsible if it skips twice.

...I will not suggest ice cream for breakfast out loud. I'll just think it.

...I will not be sarcastic more than twice.

...I will not roll my eyes more than twice.

...I will suppress the urge to curse when I step on a toy because I forgot to look down when I was walking.

...I will not threaten to "throw it out the door and run over it with the truck" if something isn't working right.

and finally...

...I will forgive myself instantly for forgetting any of these throughout the day. After all, these are my meditations...no one has to know.

I am infinitely happy that these are meant for only one per day. If I had to put so much conscious effort into a day to do all of these things, I think I would end up in the fetal position crying by the day's end. Especially throwing in the awesomeness one. That one's going to be exceptionally hard to live up to anyway.

Once again, these are not meant to put down the steps or the Big Book. It's all in good fun, I assure you. Don't take yourself so seriously. ;)

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Writer's Block

I sat in front of my monitor for nearly half an hour staring drowsily at a blank blog form. The little blinking cursor continuously mocked me as I racked my brain for words to silence it. Suddenly it occurred to me! I didn't need that dang cursor anyway, so I grabbed a notebook and my favorite pen and headed to the couch. The pen has been neglected lately, but there's just something about the flow of words on paper from a kick butt pen that no cursor can top. Take that you little blinking menace!!

So now I sit on the couch staring at a half blank piece of notebook paper racking my brain for words to fill it...

I try to start each day with a touch of optimism. Whether the sun is shining or has been kidnapped by greedy clouds, it is still a new day where nearly anything can happen. I don't really expect to win hundreds of millions of dollars in a lottery I don't play, but there is definitely potential for finding a penny on heads an it giving me a bit of good luck...or a little extra change. Sometimes you have to celebrate the little victories.

This morning, however, optimism flew out the window about thirty seconds after I rolled (or climbed considering I sleep next to the wall) out of bed. We need a new alarm clock. It's extremely reliable, don't get me wrong. I mean, it even goes off when you don't tell it to and refuses to be silenced by the likes of me. It continued to bleat out it's horrid scream for what seemed like five minutes. I inwardly threatened to forcibly introduce it to the far wall several times before it mercifully shut it's mouth.

I turned around and proceeded out the door wiping five hours of sleep out of my eyes. Almost the very moment I left the room pain exploded halfway up my right leg. I was fairly certain the next time I looked at my foot my toe would be crammed into it, boggling the minds of even the most experienced doctors. I stifled several choice words that would make my dad say "Quit your cussin'" while hopping on one foot. Surprisingly, after the agony subsided my toe was in it's rightful place with not even a mark to prove my story. It still feels like my worst enemy got revenge with a pair of pliers on it, but there is still no mark indicating my torment.

To my delight, my day did not continue in this horrible haunted house fashion. It actually turned out pretty good. Guess it goes to show you can't judge a day by the first 5 minutes.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Furniture Retaliation

I'll admit I have a certain flare for melodrama. When the mood or occasion strikes, Susan Lucci's got nothing on me. I'm sure with enough effort I could control this, but I usually just let it ride. I also tend to overreact. It's not my fault. My imagination works overtime to put together worst case scenarios in nearly any bad situation. It's just another piece in the vast, intricate puzzle that makes me me.

It had given no indication of how ruthless it could be! I didn't see it coming at all! For months it had sat completely complacent in the middle of the living room floor quite content to be used as a homework desk, foot stool, snack table and all of the other wonderful services coffee tables offer. It's only request in return was a daily dusting. We had a very good relationship for several months.

Then one fateful Sunday night, it happened. Along with the dramatic flare, I also have the uncanny ability to be a complete airhead at times. This isn't my fault either. I'm not sure who/what I blame, but I refuse to take responsibility for this flaw. I had assembled a very tasty chocolate cake on a whim and served it in the glass dish to my two awaiting boys. I placed the dish gingerly on top of the coffee table, a thick hand towel beneath. I doled out pieces of this delicious treat and we were enjoying it immensely when we heard a very loud POP! My husband and I looked at each other. He was obviously as confused as I was. After looking around the room and seeing nothing amiss, he lifted the cake. Down the middle of the table was a hairline crack. I had broken the coffee table. Later that night after beating myself up for hours (I loved that coffee table) the glass top made a temporary home on the front porch until it could be moved to the curb for recycling.

Two days later I decided it had to go. I had apparently only given it time to stew in it's own juices. I had no clue coffee tables retaliated when they were broken. I had assumed they simply accepted their fates and moved on to that big recycle bin in the sky. Boy, oh boy was I wrong!

The glass was thick and looked extremely sharp. I stood over it intending to pick it up with every ounce of care I had and move it with caution. I knew I had to put a bit of "umph" into it because of it's weight. I prepared myself to pick up the heavy object, reached down...and was suddenly bleeding.

Blood poured unchecked down my right middle finger and onto the porch. For a moment I was dumbfounded. It had happened so quickly and I felt none of it. The only indication of the table's attack was the red liquid that flowed freely. Snapping out of my stupor, I threw open the glass door and headed for the kitchen sink. I let water run over it for about 30 seconds trying to survey the damage when I realized it wasn't going to stop. I darted to the bathroom, grabbed a washcloth and put pressure on the cut that was still gushing.

What did I do next? Why, I updated my Facebook status, of course! "is bleeding...a lot!" After several comment conversations (resorting to chat speak because one handed typing is tedious) I called my husband at work.

I had long since realized that there was absolutely no pain, just blood. This led me to believe I had sliced a nerve. I had only known one person that had happened to and they ended up having to go to Louisville to get it sewn up. I couldn't do that! Who would get my son off the bus? What if they wanted to give me drugs (if you know me you know why I was worried about that)? Oh man! What if they had to take my fingernail to sew it up? That's really gonna hurt! I checked it again. Still bleeding. No amount of pressure was stopping it. I was going to completely bleed out from a cut inflicted by a piece of glass that didn't have the decency to just let things go! Crap! Why did I mess with that thing anyway?! Man, I really loved that coffee table.


My husband suggested elevating it and to call him back in 15 minutes. I continued my chat speak conversations and proceeded to clean up dots of blood throughout the house. Then I ventured outside for another look at my enemy. It just sat there uncaring and unfeeling. I knew not to get too close to it for fear of another attack, but eyed the spot that had impaled me. I wondered for a moment if my neighbors thought I was batty. My hand rested on the top of my head.

A few minutes later the phone rang. My husband was on his way home. It hadn't stopped bleeding.

After careful consideration we deduced that my finger did not, in fact, need stitches. He wrapped it for me in a paper towel and placed a rubber band just below the cut, not tight enough to cut off circulation, but tight enough to slow it. In a few minutes, it had stopped.

The table continued to inflict it's wrath on my for days! Bumping it against everything made up for the lack of pain on the actual impact and yard work became a guessing game of whether or not it would be opened up again. I opened it back up more often than not for three days and then was ordered not to do yard work until it was healed.

Moral of the story? Go with wood..or slate..or even concrete, not glass. Glass sure does hold a grudge!!

Two days later

Now do you believe I overreact?

Saturday, May 1, 2010

An Evading Arachnid

I'm not a spider person. I can handle the occasional cellar spider, but that's about as far as my spider loving takes me. I also don't claim to have infinite knowledge on the subject. In short, most spiders creep me out.

My husband has been working a lot of nights lately. After my 10 year old is tucked safely in his bed I busy myself on Facebook or delving deep into a book. The night this story stems from, I was on the computer. It was your ordinary every day..or night..scenario. Nothing new or interesting really. Just killing time. That's when he came on the scene. I could tell he was going to be trouble the moment I laid eyes on him. He moved slowly at first; sauntering ever so cockily down the wall. He completely stopped me in my tracks (yes, he has been labeled a he because I refuse to believe anything female could be that creepy). This guy was huge! At least 2-3 inches with his legs all sprawled out. I shudder to think of him even now.

My first thought was a shoe. There were several right beside me so I grabbed the biggest one I could find, instantly regretting that it was a sandal. My husband's sandal, but a sandal nonetheless. It's strange how quickly the mind works! I was convinced in that second, eying the thing creeping meticulously down my wall would somehow jump from beneath the sandal the moment I tried to squish him and attack my hand with every bit of gusto he had. His position was between a window facing and a shelf so I had only a small amount of room to work with. I knew if I just swung willy nilly he would take off quick like a bunny and I would have to chase him. Putting my hand inside the sandal, I aimed for him. I was going to have to be sure to be just over him. I readied...breathed deeply and went for it.

Man did that thing move fast! All of my weight was now against the wall. I was sort of hovered over my desk and pressing with everything I had. For a split second I thought I had him. I could almost hear the little crunch of victory. Yes! No. There he was, right beside my hand! How had he moved so quickly? Was this some sort of evil transporting arachnid that I hadn't heard about yet? My balance eluded me and I let out a short scream. Stopping to make sure I hadn't woke my son and placing my feet firmly on the floor once again, I surveyed the area.

He had ventured just over the shelf. Any movement by me would send him into hiding in the vast collection of action figures (my husband is a collector) and I would have to wait him out. He was very still, biding his time. Spray! I needed spray! Did we have bug spray? I didn't think so. Bleach! Bleach kills everything! I went on a search for a spray bottle of bleach. This venture took me to the bathroom where my eyes dart everywhere in search of this murder weapon. There! The spray bottle! Saved!! Nope. It was empty. I only glanced at the gallon of bleach before deciding I didn't have time to fill the spray bottle with the glorious liquid before the pest would be on the move again. The kitchen! I'll bet there's something in there! First I grabbed window cleaner. This should work. Then I saw the multi-surface cleaner. Previously I had taken out an entire army of ants with this so I snatched it up and hurried back to the living room.

Sandal in one hand, spray in the other, I stalked my prey. He was gone. Cursing under my breath (actually I think I said "Crap!" because that is normally my curse word of choice) I watched for him. He eluded me for what seemed like forever. I sat back down at my desk and waited. He had to come out sometime.

I busied myself once again, watching the shelf from the corner of my eye. Any movement I would catch and I would be ready. I slowly sat my cleaner on the desk just a few inches from my fingertips. Any movement at all and I would be a mad spraying fool, or so I thought. Three minutes passed, then five. I hadn't forgotten he was there, but had slowly let my guard down.

Then, he emerged.

The first thing out of my mouth was, "Bah!" Once again I silenced myself to make sure the child still slept peacefully. He did. I grabbed up my spray. He was mine now! I stood up too quickly for his liking. The spider took off like a bat out of Satan's realm and crawled at the speed of light around the side of the shelf. He sat there. He taunted me; dared me to attack him with a shower of cleaner. I obliged him. Once again he was on the move. Darting here and there hoping to evade my barrage of sprays while all the while I squeezed the trigger.

I don't know how many times I sprayed toward this creepy crawler before he fell and disappeared. Rest assured if he perished from the attack he met his maker all sparkling clean!

Why was I so freaked out by this intruder? It wasn't only that nearly the entire species creeps me out, but I was convinced it was a Brown Recluse. It was only after my husband got home from work and did an extensive search for me that I learned it was merely a Giant House Spider. I also learned a Brown Recluse only grows to about 3/4 inch. I breathed a sigh of relief. Giant House Spiders are apparently a friend to the humans. They feast on Hobo Spiders which are rather dangerous.



There are only a few similarities when I look at these pictures. Better safe than sorry I suppose.