Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Banned Book Week

This week, from September 24th through October 1st, is Banned Book Week. I always miss it, even though it's always the last week of September, but this year I managed to catch it thanks to a random, campus-wide email by one of the English professors. For those who don't know, Banned Book Week is the American Library Association's yearly celebration of "the freedom to read and the importance of the First Amendment" (source).

For me, it's the time when we look at  our system thankfully, because even though there are people who would, and have, banned books, we live in a country where we're free to read anything we want, despite the objections of the close-minded. This week is a time to learn about books that have been banned not only repeatedly throughout history, but even in the previous year, and to reflect on what's being lost in attempts to ban intellectual property. What a sad world this would be if people determined to ban any material they found objectionable won. Could you imagine? Absolutely no books would exist, because there's no shortage of people who find at least something objectionable. I can't even imagine and even more so as quite a few of the books on the list of banned classics have absolutely changed my life.

So, in celebration of Banned Books Week, here are a few of the many things going on around the web. Check them out.

Banned Book Week Virtual Read-Out - Short readings from banned books. I found this both incredibly interesting and quite inspirational. Best of all, you can make a video and upload it to the Banned Books Week YouTube channel. Follow these guidelines to participate.

Banned Classics--A lit of banned classics. I had no idea how many classics I've both read, and have yet to read, before looking over this list. I'm preparing a list of books for reading just as soon as I get out of grad school. If you're interested in learning why some of them were banned, check this out.

Mapping Censorship--Click on the link below the map to see Google Map's mapping censorship website. [If you can't see the map, try refreshing].

View Book Bans and Challenges, 2007-2011 in a larger map
For now, and while you're here, please give this short video a watch. It's a short reading from Chaucer's Canterbury Tales (for the Virtual Read-Out) and is well worth a listen as the reader reads it in both middle and modern English.

I hope you'll take a moment to check out some of these resources for Banned Book Week and reflect on how fortune we are to have access, via libraries and on the web, to so many banned, or nearly banned, books.

Monday, September 26, 2011

An Open Letter to Curtis Painter

Dear Curtis,

You've got a tough gig, I know. Being back-up to Peyton Manning for the last few years meant you really didn't have to do anything... ever. You had the cushy job of sitting on the bench and the privilege of having a front row seat, week in and week out, to the single most exciting player in the NFL. Period. I'm sure you spent a good deal of time preparing, working with the practice teams, and launching the ball during the pre-season, but no one ever expected you to actually do anything real. To really play, to really throw the ball in a real game, and to really try to lead the Colts to a win. All that lack of expectation must have been awesome. After all, no one was looking at you behind the monument that is Peyton Manning, so why would you need to try?

I get that. I also get that you must have felt a little bit slighted when, on Peyton's injury, the Colts went looking for a retired, second-rate player to lead the team. Why did they need Kerry Collins when you were there, a part of the Colts offense, and could have done it? Right? What's Collins know anyway? It's not like he's got 40,000+ career yards, or anything. I mean, really, what's the next to your 145 or so career yards, anyway?!  Maybe you were right, if that's how you felt, because just like you're no Manning, neither is Kerry Collins. And neither of you ever will be. But I felt for you. I did. Collins led us to two losses in the first two weeks, after all. Clearly, there's a reason he's retired--well, other than he's 38 years old. Then again, he's actually played the game, and scored touchdowns, and earned yards. He's a pro. But hey, so are you, right?

Then they put you in the game last night, against the Steelers. I wanted to root for you, to give you an A for effort, as a good friend of mine said. I thought, "Hey, maybe this guy deserves a chance and I'd love to see him step up." I wanted to want you, Curtis. I really, really wanted to tell that little voice in the back of my head, the one that said "there goes the game" when you came onto the field, to shut the hell up. I wanted to believe we could win with you on the field.

Then, I saw you fumble and vastly overthrow a receiver who was wide open. Wide open, Curtis! Seriously, I could have made that pass. They might as well have gone looking for a fan with a few college passes under his belt and let him play that quarter, after Collins' injury. We'd have been better off. I mean, I actually cringed, and I hate to cringe. I literally did that little cliche movement where you press your teeth together and shake your head. Unsurprisingly, when we lost, I wasn't terribly surprised. Neither was anyone else. But hey, when you make a paltry $400,000 a year, behind Peyton Manning's $20 million a year, who can expect much? I certainly don't, and let must say, I never will.



Friday, September 23, 2011

Still Sick... Seriously.

Bleh, I'm sick. I've been sick all week, but the point is that I'm still sick. Every day I seem to feel worse, so yesterday I went to health services at my school. They say I have a pretty fierce sinus infection--thanks, rude hotel check-in lady in Plainview--and gave me a steroid shot and some antibiotics. I'm hoping that it helps soon, because I'm feeling pretty miserable and since I took Wednesday off, I'm at work today because my students can't afford too many days off. They said 24 hours on the steroid shot, that is before it starts doing anything, and a few days on the antibiotics. Hopefully, I'll be better by Monday.

Of course, being sick means I won't be able to go out to Bluff Dale Vineyard tomorrow afternoon and see The Accidental Band play. That, my friends, is a real bummer. Not only was I looking forward to some good folk music, I was looking forward to a few glasses of good wine. They have a wine called Sweet Caramella on their wine list that I have been dying to have. I was going to invest in a bottle, but since we won't be going, that won't be happening. With 50 papers coming in on Monday, and my formal observation/evaluation on Friday, I need a nice bottle of wine to take the edge off. For now, nothing doing. We'll definitely have to go next time they play there, in October... or maybe it's November. Whatever, either way we're going.

I did, however, feel pretty terrible about having to take the time off, so I got to work on my thesis. I finished my Chapter One corrections on Tuesday and sent them off to Dr. Y. On Wednesday, when I was off work because I couldn't speak or stop coughing, I got three pages of Chapter Two written. So, at least my days off were productive, regardless of my physical condition. My brain clearly still worked, at least a little bit. Then, today, when I get home from work (after 2pm), I'll get to work on Chapter Two again and, hopefully, bang out some more pages because it's due October 15th to Dr. Y for initial corrections and I keep hoping to finish it and get it to her sooner than that. We'll see.

Anyway, the bottom line seems to be that I'm sick and wish I weren't. Too much to do to be sick, honestly. I think I'll start taking Airborne or Emergen-C, or something, regularly from here out. My immune system could clearly use the boost, because when I get stressed out, I tend to catch whatever sickness floats my way. Seriously not cool.


Monday, September 19, 2011

Pics from Plainview

I wrote about our trip to Plainview, last weekend, now I thought I'd share some pictures. My sister, or I, took them with her iPhone. After seeing her phone, I'm even more convinced I want one!

Me and Matt (adjusted with Picnik), and me and mom. I don't think I have any pictures of mom and I, so this is awesome. I think she looks great in this pic!

Me and Candi, in both pictures. Candi's 22, can you believe that? We had a good time, it was awesome that she got to come with mom and dad this time.

The left-side picture is me and my papa (my grandma's husband since I was about 8 years old). The right-side picture is me with Candi and my aunt Wanell, my papa's daughter.

I realized that we got home without any pictures with me and my dad, which I was a little bit bummed about, actually. I'd love to have a shot of me and dad! As it is, I don't have one to share. Maybe I'll get one when they're out in May for my graduation. That would be nice.

Alright, time for me to go. It's getting late and I'm not feeling at all well. Good night.

Childfree, Indefensible Apparently

If you read here with any regularity, or take a look at my archives, you'll find that I don't often discuss hot button issues, like religion, politics, or my status as childfree. I am what I am, and being childfree is a part of that, but I don't like to discuss it here because it's not something I feel like I need to defend, especially as this isn't really a "childfree blog." If it were, I would be all over it, and I do enjoy some childfree blogs. Today, however, I'm going to talk about it because I'm feeling a little bit annoyed, and a little bit uneasy, and that breeds ranting.

So yeah, I was reading this article, which basically says that parenting is the ultimate form of cognitive dissonance. He says that parents create the myth of joy to compensate for any potential unhappiness with their irreversible status as parents, and that a study shows that parents are generally less happy than their childless counterparts. Whether I believe it or not is irrelevant (I tend to generally believe it, by the way), it was the comments that really ticked me off.  Apparently, people are still, in the year 2011, saying that people without children are less a part of the human experience than those who have them. Which, I'm sorry, is just ridiculous.

Things like this...
Unless you experience it, it's just like explaining a sunrise to a blind person.

or, this...
You will never understand the full human experience and the meaning of love without a child of your own.

oh, or maybe this sarcastic sentiment...
non-Parent­s know everything about parenting - haven't you heard? ...Non-parent­s- they can tell you everything you're doing wrong and how you could be doing better.

Honestly, I don't know why I read these things. All they do is upset me, and there's no shortage of people saying that those of us who're childfree are less human, or lacking something essential to being complete. Okay, so I don't know what it means to be a mother, but I have a mother and was once a kid. From that vantage point, everyone is at least a little bit qualified to speak to what it means, seeing how they themselves were once--or perhaps still are--a part of the parent/child dynamic. Not from the parent perspective, but as half of the relationship, nonetheless.

Truly though, lately I've had trouble feeling like some of the people in my life understand me and this choice. Which leads me to think that if we have trouble with the people in our own lives understanding us, how the hell can we expect perfect strangers, who may or may not know someone who's childfree, to understand us?

And heaven forbid we should try to defend ourselves and our choices, not that we should have to. It's as if those with children--many, not all--don't want to even try to understand us. Or, are so eager to defend their decisions that they can't possibly see that others might make a different one. I have my convictions, they'll never change, I'll never turn up wanting to have a baby, that's simply not something I'm about to abandon. Likewise, I'm not going to turn up suddenly liking babies or enjoying being around them. It's not who I am. That doesn't make me less human, or less of a person, it means I'm able to understand myself and who I am, on a fundamental level. Very few people can say the same. There's something to be said for that.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Vow Renewal?!

So, now that we've been married for 11 1/2 years, Matt and I have been talking about having a vow renewal ceremony for our 15th wedding anniversary. While we realize it's still 3 1/2 years away, it seems like an appropriate time to be considering it. Weddings, or in our case vow renewals, aren't cheap and we really want to have a ceremony we're going to remember for years to come. While there are several reasons to do this, particularly for us, we're also running into a few problems in the pre-pre-planning phase.

The first reason this is ideal for us is that we didn't have a wedding the first time. I had been married before and wanted to skip the whole ordeal and Matt didn't care one way or another. We wanted to be married, not to have a wedding, so we went to the court house in Waco, a beautiful building, and were married by a justice of the peace. We didn't even have attendants or witnesses. It was just the two of us, together, doing something special for our relationship, no overly expensive celebrations attached.

Unfortunately, no wedding means a lot of things we didn't think about at the time. For instance, we don't have wedding pictures. We don't even have a snapshot of us on that day, which is a bit of a bummer. I'd love to have something to look at, to look back, and remember that awesome day. As it stands, we simply don't have it. So having a vow renewal, which is more like a traditional wedding, would be a good way to commemorate our marriage, with pictures and those we love, and to celebrate 15 wonderful years together.

The second reason goes with the first, that is, because we didn't have a wedding our family and friends weren't able to celebrate with us. This seems like a really good reason to have a vow renewal to me. We agree on that. Also, I'd really like to give Matt the experience of having a wedding, now that we're settled into our relationship and can really appreciate what it means. When we were younger, I don't feel like we could have appreciated it the way we would now that we're older and have been together for a long time. We understand what being married means and that experience enables us to truly understand what it is to vow to love someone for better or worse.

Now for the problems. The biggest problem is that I hate weddings. I know, that sounds horrible, but it's the truth. I hate them, hate isn't even a strong enough word. I abhor them. I don't really understand it myself, but that's my feeling. It could stem from my experience the first time around, but who can say? So, having a vow renewal, which is a wedding of sorts, might be tricky. Yet the idea appeals to me; the weird thing is that I really do want to do it, despite my feelings about weddings.

Another issue, going hand in hand with the aforementioned problems is that any time I think about planning a wedding I feel sick. They cost a lot of money and I'm wondering if it's worth it. We could just get pictures made, but it's not the same thing. We should have the experience of a wedding, on our terms, the way we want one or not at all. I just keep coming back around to the question: Is it worth it? I mean, we're already married.

We also face the issue of who to invite. Of course our families would be invited, but where do we draw the line on that? If we do it at all, I would want it to be a very small affair-- As in, 30 people or less. We would want it to be personal, and private, and small. So, do I invite my aunts and cousins? Well, my Aunt Pam is a given, but what about the others? I wouldn't want to and that might cause family drama. Do I invite my husband's step-siblings? Is there really even any reason for that? Do we allow people to bring dates? Children? I think the kids thing would have to be a big fat no way. I don't like children and wouldn't want them hanging around--but then my sister has kids and how do you really exclude them? Which of our friends are to be invited and which not? How do we invite some and not others?

Oh, and then there's the whole do we have it in a church, thing. Matt and I are neither one very inclined toward religious institutions. I don't like churches, neither does he, so that would be out, but would everyone involved understand? Who's to say, really. I mean, I just keep telling myself this would be our day and no one elses, but there're still considerations to be made. I think I'd like to do it outside, in the autumn, during the early evening. That sounds ideal to me.

Yeah, I'm thinking about all of these things because if we do it, I want it to be well thought out before we even commit to trying it. I also want things the way I want them, and right now, I know how that will look. I have a vision in my head of the whole thing. I know how and what I want, and I want to make sure Matt has equal say because this would be as much for him as for me.

So now tell me, what do you think about the idea of a vow renewal? Would you do it? Do you think we should? Someone give me advice on this. I'd love to hear what others think of the idea. :)

{{PS. Yes, I realize I wrote two involved posts in one day, so don't miss the previous post, with pictures, about the vintage sewing machine!}}

Sewing Machine & Things

I decided, after going through some of that stuff last night, that it might be better to just make a new post with the pictures I was going to put in the last post. Two reasons: the last post is plenty long enough, without pictures, and I'd really like to dedicate a post to this because getting a good look at that sewing machine, and all the things in the boxes, really made me appreciate what I had in a whole new way. I was very, very happy to have the sewing machine because it had been my grandmother's and I loved her, but when I got a good look at it, I really saw the beauty in what I had.

I also realized, right away, that I have no idea how to use it. I don't even know if it works. I didn't plug it in and give it a spin, so it's possible it needs servicing before anything else.

I love the vintage green color. This machine has so many dials, nobs, and levers, I don't know that I'll ever be able to figure them all out. I have a new machine, a Brother, which seems so dumb-ed down next to this machine. Oh, as always click the images to see them larger. I've said so before, but I feel like this machine is worth a closer look!

And I must say, it wasn't until I opened that little hatch on the top, and saw that strange dial looking thing-y, that I realized I really had no clue. Last night, when I was going through the things in the boxes, I came across a little plastic Kenmore box filled with those strange red disks. After looking at them, and the little white stitch diagram printed on each one, I knew they must go with the sewing machine, but I still had no idea what to do with them. Then, this morning, while taking these pictures, I found that little hatch on top (second picture above) and realized they must be used to set the stitch-type. No idea how, but that's my guess right now. I have the manual, so I'll have to check it out later.

I was really impressed by how well maintained the whole thing was for being so old. My grandmother took impeccable care of things. The front door on the table, which it now occurs to me I should have taken a picture of, is a little bit loose and sags a tiny bit (not sure what to do about it), but overall the whole thing is in great shape. Even insofar as the springs that provide resistance for lowering the machine into the table--which you can see in the right side picture above--is still really tight. I was worried that the machine would fall into the table, when I was trying to lower it, but it didn't do so at all. I actually had to push more than I thought to get it down into the table, but it wen't without complaint. Such a neat thing, that!

In addition to the awesome table, which I am so impressed with, I came home with boxes full of stuff. One of the boxes is filled with nothing but fabric scraps, which are more like large pieces of fabric, but aren't quite enough to make garments. Going through that box I found a bag with two riveting tools (which seem to be different) and a whole bunch of metal rivets. I also found a few cross-stitch kits and some embroidery--which I may or may not attempt. Oh, and then there were the bags, yes plural, of thread. Spools and spools! I threw away all of the nearly empty spools, the ones where I could see the spool, and untangled the rest. I literally filled an entire vintage overnight case with spools of thread!

The left side picture is the spools of thread. Before last weekend, I kept all of my sewing things in that box. My scissors, patterns, books, needles, thread, everything. Now, it's full almost to the top with spools of thread in every color imaginable! The right side picture is the door on the front of the sewing table, I decided to take a quick picture of it. All of the presser feet and such are kept in there. The only thing I don't like about it is that there's no space, because of height clearance, to put the cans of oil for the machine in that drawer. Otherwise, it's a really cool feature and allows me to keep all of the machine's things together.

All in all, one of the coolest things I came back with was this neat little box. My grandmother kept her sewing things in. It's metal and is perfect to stash all of the things I wasn't able to store in the vintage overnight box anymore, because it's now filled with spools of thread. So, I'm using it for the same purpose my grandmother was and it's perfect for that. The big, black-handled scissors on top are pinking shears and they are pretty sharp. There're also two pair of sharp metal sewing scissors and a rotatory cutter, in there with the rest of my things. And, of course, pins and other sewing stuff.

Anyway, I've gone on and on long enough, so I think it's time to go. I'm not feeling 100% today and I have to work on my thesis before going to my meeting at 3pm. I hope you've enjoyed the pictures!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Family & the Weekend

I had the opportunity, this last weekend, to see my folks and my youngest sister who came to Texas to iron out a few final things with my grandmother's belongings. It was so nice to see them, I really miss them terribly being so far away. It was also quite hard. They came out this way for a rather quick, whirlwind trip here and back, which is both fortunate and unfortunate. Fortunate because it means that the meager two days I had to spare were enough. Unfortunate because my mom has to get her myobloc treatments (which she gets every three months) this coming Wednesday. When it's close to her treatments, her condition starts to really bother her, so to take a trip like this was a brave thing to do right now.

I think the hard part of the weekend was being in my grandma's house, without my grandma. It was so strange. My papa Dwain was there, but it was just as hard for him as for the rest of us, particularly because we were taking a lot of my grandmother's things. He really struggled and said that once we all left, he was headed back out of town to see his friend. He really didn't want to stay in the house, and who could blame him? So I think after everyone left, early afternoon, so did he.

Anyway, after a six hour drive from Stephenville to Plainview early Saturday morning, we spent the day with my folks, my sister, and my aunt packing things up and moving things around. Some cousins from Lubbock (about an hour from Plainview) were coming--and came-- on Sunday morning to take a lot of the stuff, so it was really important for us to get things packed up for them. That was exhausting, to say the least, particularly so for my mom and my aunt, who both suffer from muscular/neuro-muscular disorders.

I did have the opportunity to have some things that belonged to my grandmother, for which I'm infinitely grateful. While she was still alive she gave me the family quilt--which is really neat and is something I plan to hang on the wall after we move. Now that a lot of her things needed to be moved, they allowed us to select a few things. One big thing I got was my grandmother's antique sewing machine. It's the sewing machine that my grandma made my mom's wedding dress on. When she asked me if I wanted it, there was no answer but the affirmative. I definitely wanted it! Then it was a matter of fitting it in our car. We have a little two door Pontiac Sunfire, so getting it in there was tricky business--It's the kind of machine that's bolted into a rather hefty table, so it's not small.

Matt and I did managed to fit it, with several boxes of thread, ribbons, and other sewing paraphernalia. I'm learning to sew, because it's something that makes me feel closer to my grandma, so having that really means a lot to me. The other things were some knickknack type things, like candle sticks, music boxes, things like that that had belonged to my grandma. All in all, I think we came back with five boxes, some bags of lose stuff, and the sewing machine. Matt brought it all in from the car this morning, before I left for work--what a sweetheart, even though I was being particularly unfriendly this morning; I can be really nasty in the mornings, poor guy!

The drive home last night was nice, but uneventful. We stopped at an IHOP in Lubbock and had lunch. While the service was terrible, the food was awesome. I only mention it because they have pumpkin pancakes right now, for fall, and they are absolutely to. die. for. They were delicious!! If you have a chance, eat them, seriously, eat them. Otherwise, we got in late last night and our baby was sooooooo happy to see us. Dogs aren't good when left alone, particularly needy little shih-tzus, and I always worry about him. We had a friend look in on him while we were gone, so we knew he was alright, but I still worry.

All in all it was a really nice weekend. Not terribly restful, but nice anyhow. I would trade rest to see my family any day. Until Saturday, I hadn't seen them since my grandmother's funeral last August. So, it has been more than a year and that's simply too long. I cannot wait until I can be packing up and moving home. Only another 8 months now and something tells me that's going to fly right by!  At least, I hope it does!!

{{PS. I'm at Tarleton right now, but when I get home later I intend to add a picture or two to this post. So, if you see it sans the photos, check back if you're interested in seeing them.}}

Friday, September 9, 2011


I feel like I complain all the time, but honestly, I have something to complain about  this time. I always feel like I have something to complain about, but right now, I'm in pretty serious pain, so that seems like a legitimate reason. My shoulder is absolutely killing me! I think I may have mentioned a month or so back that I went to the ER to have it looked at, since I was freaked out that it might be arm pain. They told me I have a "rotator cuff sprain" and to just not use it, to do some shoulder exercises, and to take muscle relaxers and it would heal up.

Well, guess what? It hasn't freaking healed up! As a matter of fact, I think it's getting worse. The pain is almost constant now. If I'm in a cold environment, it's worse! It just hurts and no amount of Advil is helping it. The only thing that seems to do the trick is the warm water from a shower and the Flexril they prescribed me. Unfortunately, the drugs make me totally loopy, which means I can't drive, or you know, think. Since I have a job that requires me to stand up in front of people and think, being drugged up isn't going to improve my job performance. It'll just make my students look at me like I've lost my mind, which isn't far from the truth with meds like that.

Matt thinks I need to go back to the doctor. Fortunately, I have medical insurance. Unfortunately, it's Friday and that's too late to get an appointment this week. So, I suffer. Since we're going out of town this weekend--my parents are going to Plainview (about 5 hours northwest of us) to sort through some more issues with my grandmother's belongings--I'll have the chance to take the meds, relax some, and go for a swim at the hotel on Saturday night. I so wish we had a pool, or knew someone who did that was close by, I feel like the weightlessness you experience in the water could be good for my shoulder pain.

Anyway, I have a little less than two hours until my class, my notes are preped and since I'm in pain, Matt's going to come pick me up and we'll, well, I don't know, actually. I guess we might go get food. That seems like the most judicious use of the little bit of time I have before my noon class commences. It will also get me out of the cool office, where I'm hurting, and into the warmth of the sun, where things aren't quite so painful.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Lesson Learned...

Things are back in full swing and, seriously, I did not anticipate how busy things would be! Every semester of graduate school I tell myself that I'll get the hang of this, that after this semester I'll be easier, and every semester it gets harder. I think, if I didn't do the assistantship, it would be a much easier experience. However, with the assistantship, and trying to write my thesis, life has gotten quite crazy!  While I like it, I also don't so much like it. I had the opportunity to spend the summer reading and studying, and that suited me just fine. Now, I'm teaching and writing my thesis and things are starting to get hectic.

So, I've been avoiding any extra work and hiding my head in the sand. I've spent a good deal of time with Matt, enjoying the weekend and trying to wind down from a crazy first week. I've not been blogging, or spending much time of Facebook. Rather, I've been trying to enjoy life while I have a few moments to do so. Matt's been amazing lately. He's a really good, really supportive guy who does what he can to help me and spends time with me when I have the time available. Amen for a good husband!

As far as school goes, it's good. I've said that I'm teaching, which is a really difficult experience for me in a lot of ways. The first week went pretty well, I felt really good about my classes and the students, I felt like we understood one another. It was really good. This week's been a whole other experience. One of my classes is quieter than the other, much more reserved. It made things a little bit difficult because I was doing a lot of the talking and I felt like I was repeating myself.  This makes things tough because, let's be honest, I'm just a little bit nervous and anxious to fill the air. Dead silence is not a good thing.

I did, however, have the opportunity to learn something about myself today, so it's been a good experience if for nowt else but that. I observe a class in the morning, have a few hours break, and then teach my own classes. Today, from the interactions, I learned that sometimes it's really important to listen to yourself when it comes to planning classes out. We watch Dr. M's class to see one example of what we're supposed to be doing, which is helpful because she's great and also because our classes is doing the same material as Dr. M's class. Today, I found that sometimes her way can't be my way. I need to watch and pay attention to how things work for me.

For my first class, I just winged the information. I didn't put up any sort of outline, I just went with it. I had my notes from observing that morning, and I had the book, but that was it. I found, however, that I couldn't quite remember everything when doing things like that. I can't exactly stand there and look at my notes, that's not going to work. So, between my classes, I came upstairs and put together an outline of the information, filled with questions to address during the lecture, from the book material. That worked like a charm! One of my students even came up to me after that class and told me I was an "awesome teacher!" That really made me feel good, I have to say. It was the shining moment in what had been, up until that class, a rather bleak day.

Now, I'm preparing to go home, which is a good thing because I'm exhausted. Matt and I are going for dinner and I think I'll have a drink, to ease the strain. I don't have any idea how people get through grad school without something to dull the... I don't know. Pain doesn't seem like the right word. Maybe strain, that's better. Mango Skrewdriver and chicken fajita bites, here I come!!


Thursday, September 1, 2011

Alone, Alone...

I swear, I feel a little bit pathetic right now. It's 9pm and I'm sitting here, alone, staring at my computer. The TV's off, the only sound is the hum of the air conditioner and the clicks of the keyboard, and I really, really wish Matt would come home. He went out to eat with his dad, and then to the football game at Tarleton, and I really miss him. How sad, right? He's only been gone like, oh, three and a half hours, and I really want him to come home. What's worse, there's absolutely no reason I should feel like this, I see him all of the time.

I think maybe the problem is that since school started back, on Monday, I've been so busy that I've not seen him as much as I'm used to. Over the summer, since he works from home, I saw him all of the time. Every day, in fact, and let me just tell you, that got a little bit tedious. I love him, and I like spending time with him, but 24/7 for three months is too much for any couple, us included. Now, school's back in and I'm spending between 6 and 10 hours a day at Tarleton, with the exception of today, and I want to spend what little time I do have with him.

Not that we really do anything together, mind you. When he's here, he's either sleeping, working, or playing video games... with the exception of Saturday, when we game together--we're playing 4e D&D right now and we're having a lot of fun with it.  Okay, not literally right now, but you know what I mean. I guess I just like him to be here, even if we're not doing anything together, specifically. I like to be able to turn and say, "hey honey..." whatever comes to mind. Most of the time he even answers. Sadly, I don't even like to be alone, alone. I like to be alone, together. If he's here, and leaving me alone, that's fine. If he's not here, and I'm completely alone, I go a little stir crazy. I would make the worst single person, ever.

Anyway, now that I've whined for ten minutes about him being away, and he's still not home, I think I'll go take a shower and try to ease down from my day off. Rather than laying around all day, or only working on my thesis like I had planned, I spent the day doing every little bit of busy work I could find (except the dishes *shudder*). I cleaned out the car, which really needed it, I cleaned off my desk, I washed clothes for Matt, I went out to lunch, you see the pattern. I did get my thesis worked on, and I got most of the major changes made (go me!), but not as early as I had intended. All of that, together with the air conditioner that has been blowing right on me all day, has gotten my arm to bothering me. It could also be those things and the fact that I was carting around a 25 lb. bag on that arm yesterday. Clearly, I don't have the slightest common sense when it comes to trying to heal from an injury, particularly one on my dominant arm.

Okay, okay, I said I was going so I am. The weekend cannot come soon enough, just one day to go! Man, I hope Matt comes home soon. Good night.