Friday, February 26, 2010

Thursday, February 25, 2010

cycles go round and time marches on

This week as compared to the one I had four weeks ago has been an interesting study in cycles for me. Once again, the beginning of my period coincided a little too well with the end of the month (when I am flat-ass broke). And, once again, I pretty much lost my shit on Wednesday. Just for the fun of it, I’ll do a little timeline for you. You like those, right? They remind you of history class.


I ALWAYS start my period on Wednesday. It's one of the benefits of The Pill (I think it's a benefit). Reg. U. Lar. I. Ty. It's usually about 10:30 AM, give or take.

Payday is more of a moving target. The last working day of the month. That may be any day Monday through Friday as the months roll along. This configuration that has repeated from last month to this month is just a matter of timing, but there is something about the combination of being broke (a-gain) and hormonal as fuck that is really putting me through the ringer. (As a comparison, next month payday will be a full week after I start my period, and by October/November payday will come first.)

I am hopeful that this is one of those things where being aware helps to mitigate the situation. I have my doubts.

.::.

I've been meaning to address Austin's condition since his surgery. Mostly for myself because I have somehow managed to completely take it for granted how well he is doing now. It's like those few months of fear and misery never happened. Having his adenoids and tonsils removed was a very painful thing for him, but it has been SO VERY worth it. He doesn't snore at all anymore and his night-time breathing is a thousand times better than it was. Thank all that is good in the Universe. Especially my beloved ENT Dr. Lee.

.::.

I did in fact burn a candle for Lori on Tuesday. I wrote her name on one small piece of paper and Garrison's on a second piece of paper. I burned both pieces of paper and said a little prayer for whatever peace they each can find as the smoke rose.

Then I lit a second candle for Garrison. And then I lit a third candle. I don't know if the third was for her husband or her other children or me or all of us, but it seemed necessary at the time. With the candles I put a copy of a book about love that I read to Austin a lot when he was a baby and had recommended to Lori when Garrison was born.

.::.

I think that's it for now. Take care of yourselves out there.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

just because

I do love me some pandas.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Wilco: What Light

If you feel like singing a song
And you want other people to sing along
Just sing what you feel
Don’t let anyone say it’s wrong

And if you’re trying to paint a picture
But you’re not sure which colors belong
Just paint what you see
Don’t let anyone say it’s wrong

And if you’re strung out like a kite
Or stung awake in the night
It’s alright to be frightened

When there’s a light (what light)
There’s a light (one light)
There’s a light (white light)
Inside of you

If you think you might need somebody
To pick you up when you drag
Don’t loose sight of yourself
Don’t let anyone change your bag

And if the whole world’s singing your songs
And all of your paintings have been hung
Just remember what was yours is everyone’s from now on

And that’s not wrong or right
But you can struggle with it all you like
You'll only get uptight

Because there’s a light (what light)
There’s a light (one light)
There’s a light (white light)
There’s a light (what light)
There’s a light (one light)
There’s a light (white light)
There’s a light (what light)
There’s a light (one light)
There’s a light (white light)
There’s a light (what light)
There’s a light (one light)
There’s a light (white light)
Inside of you

anatomy

Okay, so either Mother Nature has a very limited imagination where reproductive bits are concerned, or I have a dirty mind. Am I the only one that sees some similarities between the flower bits and those diagrams we saw in sex ed?

This is a root tip.

Maybe it's just the people who draw the diagrams. Pervs.

A year has passed

Well, tomorrow it will have been a year. I’m not sure what to do. Build an altar for Garrison? Light a candle? I think I’ve written enough, don’t need to do that again just yet. Part of me just wants to climb into a hole and not do anything at all, but that doesn’t seem especially healthy. I had an appointment to go visit Lori on Friday but I didn’t go. I called her husband and got his voicemail. He called me back and I didn’t pick up.

I could write to Lori, but I don’t think I will. I know that she still needs to know that people care about her. I want her to know that. But there’s a mean part of me that just wants to hurt her right now. The other day I fantasized about taking her to a park, just so she could see the kids and be cut to the core. But it doesn’t work that way, does it? And I know it’s not my job to punish her. So for now, I just stay away.

I have a Virgin of Guadalupe candle; maybe I’ll light that and burn her mug shot.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Field Day 1

Today was the first field day for my class. It was fun. Next time I will remember my sunglasses. We went to three vineyards in Temecula.

This is the kind of crib you can build when you have a successful winery. First stop: Hart Winery

Très artistique photographie, non? I'll be damned if I can remember what variety these are.

Everybody say, "hi, Peter!" My instructor is an absolute pleasure to listen to.

Kiddos, do as I say, not as I do. Taking photos while driving is less than smart.

Note to self: This is a grow tube. You will need some of these. Second stop: Maurice Car'rie

I actually got to prune a little at this vineyard. There is one dude in class that likes to prove that he already knows everything we're talking about so far. He tried to tell me where to cut. I almost cut him instead. Third stop: Crap, I can't remember the name of the place. I'll ask the teacher next week. I think it's for sale though.

I don't know what that building on the right is, but I do think it's cool.

At one point we were talking about how many acres it takes to support a crew to help out with pruning and harvesting and all that jazz. I made a joke about having 5 kids and making them do all the work instead of hiring people. Nobody laughed.

Yes, Miss Maybelle, there will be light

As I mentioned a few days ago, I have some pictures of the Great Door Project of 2010.

Here's Dan in his goober goggles after the original window and some of the siding was removed. We're looking from the backyard into the dining room and through the living room window.

Here's the sliding door from the outside now! The outside trim is done and it just needs a proper step down to the patio. The inside? Not so much. The drywall still needs to be finished up, and in the mean time the furniture is all shoved around out of the way until we can get the texture and paint finished. Like, in June I'm thinking.

And as promised, the little guy in his tool-belt with suspenders! He calls himself Bob the Builder.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Esc

I’ve always described my office as a morgue with keyboards. That’s all you can hear all day, the tap-tap-tap of able-fingered bodies.

But I have moments here and there that make me think this is exactly where I belong. Don’t question the Universe, Stephanie; you are exactly where It wants you to be. Accept it and you will be a much happier person.

I don’t know what the hell I’m getting at, and I know better than to blog about The Job. Lest I want to get fired. Don’t tempt me. I just get so freaking restless sometimes. LET!ME!OUT!!!

I think the guy that mows the lawns on the HUGE riding mower has the best job on campus. Too bad he has such a crappy paycheck. And there’s the rub. There ain’t no going back. I can’t make less money. Can I?

Burn out. Boredom. It’s dangerous stuff. People do stupid things when they’re bored and trapped.

If you’re bored then you’re boring. I think I first heard that little jewel from my sixth grade teacher. She was a crazy old (old-school) lady. She went to work the day after her husband died. She had high expectations and was incredibly demanding, especially where language skills were concerned. If I have one ounce of skill in technical writing I credit her.

I was in massage school when I got pregnant with Maya. I was on the fast-track to new age hippie-dom. But I found myself in need of real insurance, and that meant going to a real school to stay on my mom’s insurance. An introductory computer class was a practical choice in college. I really enjoyed that class too. So I took another. And another. Next thing I knew I was getting recommended for a job by one of my instructors. Like, a real job. My first grown-up job. And here I still am, nearly 10 years later.

And here I have roots. Job. Family. House. And I don’t commute. I won’t commute. Not with a fox. Not in a box. I will not commute, Sam-I-Am.

I won’t make it to retirement age though, will I? I would surely go crazy by then. Twenty-three more years. I can’t even think it. And there’s no knowing what will happen. The area is growing. The college is growing. Anything can happen. Maybe I will get fired for blogging. I can dream. (SARCASM!!!)

I’ll go read some Demotivators. They always cheer me up.

Amen, Sister

I just love this:

‘Family Guy’ Voice Actor Says Palin ‘Does Not Have a Sense of Humor’

And I totally remember her in Life Goes On.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

The Avett Brothers: Head Full of Doubt (Road Full of Promise)

There was a dream and one day I could see it
Like a bird in a cage I broke in and demanded that somebody free it
And there was a kid with a head full of doubt
So I’ll scream til I die or the last of those bad thoughts are finally out

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Sunday, February 14, 2010

the effing dust is everywhere

Somebody [me] thought it would be a good idea to cut a big hole in the house and swap out a window for a door to make coming and going easier. And it will be nice when it's finished. But why is it that even small construction projects take longer than planned, make an enormous mess, and cost more money than budgeted?

I have pictures of the job in progress, but somehow managed to lose my camera. There are also pictures of Austin in his little-man tool-belt. [Ms. Moon, you are gonna need one of those for Owen; it is too damn cute.] And don't go thinkin' we're all gender biased around here. Maya's got her own tool belt and knows how to work a drill gun better than I do. She could probably change a tire faster than me too (but not as fast as Dan).

Anyway, I'm just looking forward to getting the dust cleaned up and my kitchen/dining room back in order. We were (are) going to put the window we took out of the dining room into the master bedroom (this outside wall) but my MIL came home a week and a half early from what was going to be a three week trip out of state because she's sick. So we decided we'd better not cause any more dust right now. And just as well, with being over budget and what not.

.::.

Last night I did a whole bottle's worth of "homework" by myself. Riesling. Pretty sweet and citrusy. Too sweet for a whole bottle to be a good idea [for me]. The hangover started before I even went to bed. Hell, before I sobered up. So much for moderation.

While doing my "homework" I watched Bottle Shock. It was cute and entertaining. If you ever watch it, note the way dust stirs up every time a car pulls up. That is something I can really relate to. They over-used the sweeping aerial shots of Napa Valley though. It became distracting. Like what? This? Again? But I did like it much better than Sideways. Course I hated Sideways, so that's not saying much. Sandra Oh was the only good thing about Sideways. Okay, maybe that's harsh... Virginia Madsen was good too. Otherwise Sideways sucked ass.

Next Saturday is the first field day for my class. I better find my damn camera.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

You must come out to light

I do this thing sometimes where something obvious occurs to me, and then I want to kick myself for not thinking of it sooner. I know I'm not the only one that does that, but still. What the fuck, right?

A couple years back we got our first flat panel TV. It wouldn't fit in our entertainment center so we got rid of it. (I gave it to Lori. See how she comes up all the time?) Anyway, when we got rid of that ginormous piece of pine, we put most of our electronic components into storage, leaving out only the DVD player and the satelite TV box. That means my CD player has been in storage for 2 years! At home we mostly listen to music by way of the XM radio stations included in our TV package, and in a pinch you can play a CD in the DVD player. (At work I listen on the 'puter.) Today I decided it was time to have a dedicated CD player in the house again and for some reason I thought I had to buy one. (Huh?) Then I remembered I had one! And it's a multi-disc changer!

But where will I put it so Austin won't mess with it? The little bugger really likes to push [my] buttons. Literally. And suddenly the thought occured to me -- I have that handy-dandy new pantry! And since it has curtains, not doors, I can put my CD player under cover and have it right there to listen to at dinner. For some reason this thought makes me feel like I am living in a whole new world.

Is being so easily pleased a good thing or a sign of mental inadequacy?

I think I even still have a record player somewhere...

++++

It's Alright

Time to lighten things up around here. I don't mean that I feel obligated. I mean that I feel lightness coming back. I've recovered the spring in my step and the swagger in my hips in the last few days.

I have been greiving. And I don't think I'm done. But something big happened today. I was able to remember something about Lori and feel the happiness of it. For all these months, memories even of happy times felt like a knife in my heart. Today, I found myself asking the universe if it was okay to feel happy about a memory of Lori. And that felt HUGE. I know the sadness isn't gone for good. But this bit of something on the other side of the light/dark spectrum is like a life preserver in the middle of the ocean, so very welcome to my tired arms.

++++

Big Head Todd and the Monsters - It's Alright.

This song came on the radio and I wanted to dance. It's from a record called Sister Sweetly, so, yeah.

Susan Tedeschi: Sweet Forgiveness

Sweet forgiveness, that's what you give to me.
When you hold me close,
And you say "That's all over."
You don't go looking back,
You don't hold the cards to stack.
'Cause you mean what you say.

Sweet forgiveness, you help me see.
I'm not near as bad,
As I sometimes appear to be.
When you hold me close,
And you say "That's all over,
"And I still love you."

There's no way that I could make up,
For those angry words I said.
Sometimes it gets to hurting,
And the pain goes to my head.

Sweet forgiveness, dear God above.
I say we all deserve,
A taste of this kind of love.
Someone who'll hold our hand,
And whisper "I understand,
"And I still love you."

- Iris DeMent

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

k.d. lang: I Dream of Spring

a letter

Oh, Lori. Do you know that I think of you all the time? I think of you and then I scold myself for it. Because you wouldn't approve. You never approved of excessive sentimentality. Where excessive means any. But you are everywhere. And if I am overly sentimental, then so be it. So be it.

The silliest things remind me of you. You know that white shelf in my bathroom? Every time you came over you told me you liked it and asked me where I got it. And I would tell you every time that my mother bought it at Target and that they didn't have it anymore and that you couldn't have mine. And we would smile. Garrison played with that stuffed monkey that smells like cinnamon. He nearly pulled my tablecloth off the table and our salad bowls onto his head. It was the black and green tablecloth with elephants on it. I wish I didn't remember so well. The corner of my bed where I sat and talked to Greg over the phone the night of the day you were arrested. I listened to him and I cried. I sat on the bed that I have to go back to every night and I looked at those pictures in my room that you liked. I told you how much I had paid to have them framed and confessed that I had never told Dan how much I spent because he wouldn't approve, but you told me that was a good price to pay for custom framing.

My chair at work. Where I was sitting the morning that Brian came into the office after walking out of a meeting where he heard you had been arrested. Arrested for murder. The murder of your own son. I still haven't forgiven him for being the messenger that day. Just as well it was him though. There are so few people in the world that I could still love while not forgiving them. I still have to sit in that chair every day. The stairwell, in the back of the building, where I went to cry. I called your cell phone, even though I knew you didn't have it where you were. I didn't even know yet where you were being held. I read the news article and called the detective's number listed there and told him I needed to know where you were. I wanted to talk to my friend. And the sidewalks. The fucking sidewalks are the worst. I miss our walks, you wrote to me.

I can't send this letter to you. I can't. You helped me so many times. And I can't help you. I want to. Some people say there is no such thing as can't, only won't. I don't know if that's true.

I wish you were dead. I've never wished that about anyone. Not even my dad who I've hated since I was five. But I don't hate you. I wish you were free. Is there such a thing?

I told my mother the other night that I had begun to realize, really realize, that I would never be the same again. Or at least I would never be able to look at the world the same way again. The world hasn't changed though has it? These terrible things have always happened. People do terrible things. My mother says that it is evil. That there has always been evil in the world. I don't know what it is anymore. Evil seems too simple a label.

Did you lose yourself or see yourself? Did you have all the power or none at all? I don't know why I ask, the answers never satisfy. But I can't stop asking. I have always been too self indulgent.

I want to scream. I want to go out to the desert and be completely alone under the stars. I want to hold my son and not think of yours.

What happened? How did you let it happen? The answers won't make me understand. But I need to know.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

curtains and shelves and more curtains

Don't tell my boss, but I think I'm feeling better. Sometime around noon I jumped out of bed and said, "I have to DO SOMETHIIIIIIINNNGG." So after fighting with my second-hand sewing machine that is haunted by my late neighbor, I went up to my mom's house to borrow her machine and made the curtains/covers for my new wire shelves that will serve as a pantry in the dining room.

Above: open; below: closed, just in case you missed that.

Holy Moses, that's a lot of white! I may take a stamp and some fabric paints to them at some point.

While I had the camera out, I tried to get a photo of the new living room curtains. Alas, I am not a clever enough photographer to take a good pic of fabric with light shining through it. I would provide you a link to them on the store's web site, but they don't have them listed online anymore*, damn it. I'll tell you my secret -- they're shower curtains. All of my window curtains are actually cotton shower curtains. It wouldn't work for everyone, my windows just happen to be a good size for them. (The pantry/self curtains were made from shower curtains too. I'm kind of obsessed.) (*UPDATE: They're back! Take a look, but know that I got them on sale.)

Here's my collection of blue willow plates as seen hanging in the kitchen, looking through to the living room. I have a couple more plates I need to hang, but I'll have to get the ladder out and my hands shake just thinking about climbing a ladder.

Here is the dining room with the new pantry shelves as seen from the living room... I couldn't wait to put something decorative-like on top of them, even though Dan told me not to. We'll be moving things around a bit when we have that window replaced with a sliding door this weekend. Hallelujah!!! It will be so nice to not have to come and go through the back door in the cramped little laundry room anymore. (Those sheers are also shower curtains.)

Did you notice the floating guitars in the photo above? I did when I took it, so I had to take one showing that wall.

There are more. Too bad I don't play. I leave that to the people who aren't tone deaf.

.::.

If you like this post, you may also like:

Photo Essay: Living Space

Reuse and Reduce: craigslist patio furniture for the bedroom

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Best laid plans

I had big plans for today. Big plans! I was going to take pictures of the little baby sage brushes that are creeping closer and closer to the house, reminding us that they were here first and they aren't giving up! I was going to take a picture of the new living room curtains. They look like a summer dress. I was going to move all the pantry goods onto the new shelves in the dining room and make the curtain to hide them, but... sick, sick sickety sick sick.

And your weekend just isn't complete until one of your kids pukes in the middle of Target.

Friday, February 5, 2010

That which does not kill us

If I’m going to do this blog thing right, if I’m going to be the kind of blogger I admire, I have to write this story that I have been telling myself I cannot write. I have to write it as well as I can without some particulars in order to protect the innocent, and the not so innocent, namely me.

From sometime around 2005 to sometime in 2007, I had this friend. We’ll call the friend M. Dan and I were going through some stuff with work and money and that crap that can make life hard sometimes. M and I had chemistry. Our friendship was a good one and I looked forward to seeing M, maybe too much.

In December of 2006, Austin quit nursing. The hormonal high I had been on through my pregnancy and breastfeeding came to an abrupt end. I started spiraling, emotionally. I became fixated on M in ways I shouldn’t have. One day in early 2007, standing at the kitchen sink, I told Dan I had feelings for M and that I didn’t know if we should be married anymore.

His world crumbled right in front of my eyes. In a matter of seconds. From just the few words I had said while our baby cried in the next room.

I was incredibly confused about what to do. Dan and I fought. He was so hurt. I was somewhat numb. I told M what I had said to Dan, about the feelings I had for M. M was incredibly delicate with me. M said that our friendship was enough. M didn’t want anything else. M is not a relationship person. I am. M told me that I was obviously going through a hard time implied that maybe my feelings were misdirected. Maybe I was going through some postpartum depression.

Nothing physical ever happened between M and I.

My friend Lori was the one I talked to every day about what was happening. When Dan refused to leave. When Dan and I talked and fought and cried everyday for two weeks. When I called in sick to work because I couldn’t drive away from Dan without finishing what had to be said. Lori got me through that time, and that was part of why I felt indebted to her after her arrest.

What I did to Dan kills me to this day. The way I pulled the rug out from under him. Shook his world so that he couldn’t trust it anymore. It took a long time for us to even begin to get past what had happened. And even now, if he senses I am being distant, he begins to worry.

There are so many complications that I can’t get into here, because of my job and how that fits in. Because I still have to take care with Dan.

M and I no longer talk or see each other. The universe took care of that for me by way of a change in circumstances. Thank god, too. Our friendship became incredibly awkward after I came forward with the feelings and struggles I was having.

Another good friend told me that our marriage was probably stronger for what had happened. I don’t know if that’s true. It doesn’t seem true. To me it just seems like I did something terrible to someone I love and that I came dangerously close to ripping my children’s world apart.

I learned a lot about myself, my weaknesses and faults. I learned a lot about my husband and the power and responsibility that comes with being someone’s partner in life. So maybe in that way our marriage is stronger.

Amos Lee: Listen

Listen
Listen to them church bells ringing
Listen
Listen
You can hear them hounds calling off in the distance
If you listen
You can hear the engines stalling
You can hear the angels falling

Travel
You find men and women all have troubles
If you travel
You will find that are the poor the victims of the gun or gavel
If you travel

But be careful now
Be careful of all them folks out there who surround you
Be careful
Some of them really only want to ground you
They only want control
Tear you down into that hole
So be careful

Now listen
Listen to them church bells ringing
Listen
Listen
You can hear them hounds calling off in the distance
If you listen
You can hear the engines stalling
You can hear the angels falling
You can hear the engines stalling
And the angels falling

Thursday, February 4, 2010

This is why you do not want to move to California

This here is an ad by one senate candidate slamming another. I am in no way endorsing one or the other, I just think the ad is really... something. Something crazy.


Carly for California released FCINO @ Yahoo! Video

No wonder people think Californians are nuts. I just love this state.

Rocco DeLuca: Swing Low

While we're sharing new music finds, I just have to brag on this guy. I went to high school with Rocco!!! Now, let me be very clear, Rocco did not and would not have the foggiest idea who I am. I was a quiet, shy, overweight, dark-headed little shadow-girl in high school. And look at me now! My job has beat the shy out of me with a stick.

But whether or not Rocco knows me is beside the damn point. I just think it's so cool that a local kid made it!

Echo

I just love the internet. Don't you? I honestly can't imagine life without it. I mean, I know that if there was nuclear fallout or whatever I could live without it if I had to, but in the mean time, I just think it's awesome.

Anyway, the reason for my love note to the interwebs this morning is that after my post yesterday featuring the very talented Rodrigo y Gabriela, I got an email pointing me in the direction of a young man by the name of Matt Stevens who also plays a little acoustic guitar. (I say a little in jest.)

Now I am no music writer, I just like to listen, so I won't torture myself or you all by trying to write a review. But if you are like me and sometimes need music with no words, thankyouverymuch, go check it out. You can even download his record, Echo, FOR FREEEEEE. But if you like it and can, give the guy some dough, alright?

As you were.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Rodrigo y Gabriela: Diablo Rojo

Did she say crazy shit? I like her. I love that they are playing in a big ol' concert hall and sitting on crappy folding chairs. I posted another by these two here.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

counting down

Geek alert. I am a big fan of Hayao Miyazaki’s films. They are sometimes scary, always quirky and often endearing. My hands down favorite is My Neighbor Totoro, and I wager a guess that I’m not alone in that amongst his fans.

He is sometimes referred to as the Walt Disney of Japan, which I guess is equal parts insult and compliment. He is incredibly influential and much more daring than Disney.

Kiki’s Delivery Service was the first of his films that I saw, and I still enjoy it a great deal, but it is probably one of the least weird of his films. Further toward the weird end of the spectrum are Howl’s Moving Castle and Spirited Away which is excellent.

One month from today, Ponyo will be released on DVD in the US. And yes, I am counting the days and will buy it the day it comes out. I wanted to see it in theater, but as I’ve said once or twice before, I don’t get to the theater very often.

These DVDs aren’t cheap, but every once in a while I pick one up used on Amazon. When I’m feeling really spendy I’ll buy one or two new. (I actually paid about $50 for Totoro as it had been discontinued by the manufacturer for some time. And yes, that is about 10 times what I usually pay for a used DVD.) I have every intention of getting all of the films he has directed that I can on DVD as time and money allow. You gotta have priorities, man.

Are you kidding me?

Some dipshit just peed all over the toilet paper in the unisex. College students can be pretty disgusting. Christ, I hope it was a student.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Weekend Update part 2

I've blogged before about my troubles with garden pests, especially gophers, squirrels and rabbits. Spawn of the devil, all of them. No, I don't really think that, I just want to have a nice outside space and they are making it more difficult than it needs to be.

Sometime back, my MIL and I had words right in the middle of the local garden center about what to plant along the fence to cut down on dust from the road. I wanted to pick up some oleander and she reminded me that it was poisonous. I said that you hardly ever hear about dogs or kids eating it and getting sick. She told me that horses eat it. To which I responded "WE DON'T HAVE HORSES." Not to mention the fact that almost everyone in the damn neighborhood has oleander, including my parents, and there is no fence between our yard and my parents'. SO IF IT IS A PROBLEM, IT IS ONE WE ALREADY HAVE.

So, to make a long story short, I've bought 10 oleander plants since Friday and I will probably be buying more in the coming weeks. I am going to plant a fucking perimeter of poison. I can't wait for those little rat bastards to try and eat some of that. I just have to be careful about our neighbor on the north and west, she does have horses, so I will be very careful.

Weekend Update

First and foremost: I HAVE AN OVEN AGAIN!!!

A whole week without makes you appreciate these things. You can only do so much with a microwave (Although I did make vegetable soup from scratch in the micro. It was fair to middlin.) And I am sick to death of fast food. Under normal circumstances the man would have cooked over an open flame in the backyard, but I don't remember what all got in the way of that. And there is the crockpot, but I never think of that in time before going to work.

So here's the new model:

I never thought I would be interested in a five-burner, but we got started looking at them and the four-burners looked so... incomplete. The center burner is elongated for use with griddles and the like. The icon for it on the knob looks something like a butterfly.

Unfortunately we haven't actually used the damn thing yet. It took Dan the better part of the day Sunday to convert all the little fittings from gas to propane and we had dinner plans at my mother's. And tonight will be crazy with taxiing children and taking the truck into the shop and who knows what we'll be doing for dinner. So. I'm sure we'll use it soon. My MIL may make herself breakfast on it today. But tomorrow night that baby is all mine.

.::.

My class started on Saturday! The first class meeting was all lecture, but went pretty quickly. There will be two field trips to the Temecula wine country. WOOHOO! Fun fun fun.

I brought 3 bottles of California wine home from the grocery store on Saturday and told Dan it was my homework. HA!