Friday, February 27, 2015

Random Things About Me

It's that time again.  Where I let you know things about me that you may not have already known.  That you may not care to know.  That you may wish you could unlearn.

1. I loathe tennis shoes.  They are so uncomfortable.  Too constraining.  My feet feel claustrophobic.  And usually if I am in them long enough, my feet hurt.  Everyone tries to help me with this--suggesting they are too small, too old, need a new brand.  But nothing I try makes me like them more.

2. I am a sympathetic crier.  Especially if I see a man tear up.  It has been difficult in some counseling sessions where my client is crying and I know I need to hold it together.  I just want to cry with them.
3.  I always brush my teeth in warm water.  Cold water just makes me feel like I'm  not really cleaning my teeth.

4.  I have specific pens that are used for specific purposes.  Don't mess with my pens.  It may appear as if I have 10 pens and I won't miss one if you "borrow" it, but I will know.

5.  I don't own a pair of non-GAP underwear.  They are my favorite.  The closest GAP Body is near my mom, so at least once a year, we make a trip to Woodfield so I can restock.

6.  I can't bear to get rid of pictures from frames.  So, I either buy new frames or I have a stack of pictures behind the current one in any given frame or I never replace a picture.

 Top and bottom are examples of stacks of photos.  Although, the picture showing in the frames is also kind of old.  In the top, the pictures date back to when Josh was probably 3 or 4.  In the bottom right picture, Alicia and I are in college.

 Top and bottom pictures are examples of pictures I cannot cover up, even though I know they are outdated.  Top is Daynah and Josh, now 20 and 16.  Bottom is Josh and I at Daynah's 8th grade graduation.  Partly I love the picture.  Partly I keep it because I'm taller than he is in the picture!
7. The sound of a can of soda being opened is one of the most satisfying sounds to my ears.  And often makes me crave a Dr. Pepper.

8. I sleep with 2 fans on at night for noise.  However, as soon as I wake up, the noise of the fans annoys me and the first thing I do is turn them off.

9. I often get symmetrical pimples on my face.  I would take a picture, but really, who wants to see that!

10.  I almost always let out an involuntary sigh when I turn my light off and settle into bed at night.

There you have it.  10 new things about me that you maybe didn't really want to know. :)

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Happy Valentine's Day to ME!!! AKA: I bought a car

Every time I say, "I bought a car," I think of the movie "We Bought a Zoo."  I literally finish "I bought a car" with "we bought a zoo" in my head every time.  I'm weird.  Just give me this one and we can move on.

So, here's a little story about me and my new car.  I'd give you his/her fancy new name, except I've never been much into naming cars.  So you can call the car whatever you want! :)
I have been fortunate enough to have a job that pays me for the miles I drive.  In 2006 when I got that job, I decided I had never really felt as if my Ford Contour was all that reliable, so I didn't want to keep driving it into the neighborhoods I often frequent in my job.  Last day of the year 2006, I dragged Amy along with me (and by dragging I mean that she was really excited to go.  Apparently she likes car shopping) to go car shopping.  I'd never bought a new car before, but the timing was right for that to happen. So, I drove off the lot in my brand new 2007 Civic Hybrid.  I'd love to say that I loved everything about the hybrid, especially the gas mileage.  But I think the gas mileage stopped working in my favor several years ago.  For the past year, I have been successfully avoiding the fact that my check engine light regularly comes on and it's because the hybrid battery was dying.  Then, about two weeks ago, my car was doing funny things and the few times I told people about it, they said it had something to do with the transmission.  My goal was to last another year in this car because I had been saving to pay outright for a car.  But that was not to be.  So, I decided to venture to the dealership on my own to buy a car.  There were people who would have gone with me, but for some reason, I stubbornly wanted to do it on my own.  The good news is, when you go along, if you leave satisfied, you don't really know if you got taken advantage of! :)  I had done some research and had decided that I most likely just wanted another Civic, but not a hybrid again.  So, 3ish hours after I had walked in, I came out with the keys to a brand new 2015 Civic in the color I wanted, with an auto-dimming mirror thrown in.

Here is the sequence of pictures I took with my key.  I couldn't decide what look I was going for:

I decided to go with the mid-range Civic, the EX.  That got me a sunroof (which I didn't really want, actually, but it was the only way it came), push button start (which is fun but has taken a little getting used to), and a touch screen operating system.  Having moved from one Civic to another, it has been interesting because it looks a lot the same, but it's different.  So I keep reaching to do things that aren't where they used to be.  My biggest gripe is that the inside storage is about half.  My console is smaller and the side door pockets are about half the size.  I need storage for all the stuff I accumulate!

I have been driving my car for almost a week now, and I like it!  I'm a little sad with the temperatures this week, because I splurged and bought remote start...which is being installed on Monday.  Figures, but I'll get a lot of use out of it.
And the miles have already started racking up.  I passed 100 miles on Sunday, after only having the car for two and a half days.  Although I did take pleasure out of going places and even invented a few reasons to go for a drive! :)

Happy 3rd Birthday, Michael! (a little late, but no less sincere)

I'm playing a little catch up today.  And with a little catch up comes a lot of pictures!

Michael turned 3 at the end of January.  I went up to the 'burbs to celebrate.  As soon as I walked in the door, Michael took me into the kitchen to show me his birthday sign from day care.  They wrote "Happy Birthday, Michael!" really big and surrounded it with all the kids' names from his class.  Michael pointed to it and said, "The big ones are ME!" (meaning that the big letters were his name).  So cute!

Michael is a three year old going on seven, only because he wants to do everything his big brother does and he doesn't like being hampered by his age or size!  He is in that stream of consciousness stage, where he talks non-stop from morning until bedtime.  It doesn't matter if anyone is listening or if anyone is even in the room.  He can talk to himself or his stuffed animals, etc.  On Saturday, before his party, we opened family presents.  I wish I could have taken a video of him helping me open my presents on my birthday and him opening his presents on his birthday just to compare the two. Where he tore into my presents without caring what was in them, he painstakingly peeled each piece of wrapping paper off his own presents, as if he was savoring the experience.
 Beginning on his pile o' presents.
 He stopped for a quick selfie with Aunt Teresa!
 His expressions were great.
 Although he started taking the presents off the table and turning his back on everyone as he opened his presents.  Luckily, I was smart and moved to where I could still see him.

 And then he lined each present up on the floor.
 Carefully tearing each piece of paper off.  Even when he could have looked to see what the present was, he wouldn't look until he was finished with the paper.
 You can't really tell what he is doing in  this picture, but he was absentmindedly gathering the paper in his arms as he was looking at his present.  Because he could not leave even a scrap of paper on the floor.  He picked each piece up and took it to Grandma to throw away.  So funny.  Cleanest three year old birthday I have ever witnessed!
 Looking through the periscope from the lookout of his new Paw Patrol tower.

Saturday afternoon was Michael's birthday party at this toddler play place.  It gets rented out just for his party, so it was just Michael, some cousins, and some friends from day care.  The kids all had a lot of fun
Races on little scooters...

Fire Marshal Michael!  These are the only pictures of Michael I took at the party because I got distracted talking with family.  But I couldn't help but corner John in jail and take a few of him.  He was pretty camera shy that day.  I believe one of the captions on Ann's Facebook pictures of John from that day said, "John is literally screaming, 'I don't want to be on Facebook!'" as she took his picture!  Such a ham, even when he is avoiding the camera!