Wednesday, December 31, 2008


Something I really do not understand is my affection for soap operas. Young and the Restless holds an unending fascination for me, and I am not sure why, exactly. When I was young, Days of Our Lives, Another World, & Santa Barbara were what my Mamaw watched, and I, of course, watched with her. Somewhere along the line, I picked up Y&R & The Bold and the Beautiful as well-- probably because they were more interesting than talk shows and local news.

So I recognize there is an element of nostalgia. But that can't be the entirety of the issue because she also watched The Price is Right. But what is the appeal? It is certainly not the high quality writing and acting. Perhaps it is the fact that the characters provide friend drama without the time commitment. And none of it is really secret-- they show the whole nation, after all-- so there is no consequence for knowing the secret. And if you have a friend who also watches, you can gossip without fear of consequence. Does Sharon's husband know that she is secretly in love with Brad? We can discuss away-- no danger of Jack finding out from us.

But maybe it is even deeper. Y&R provides the community that I miss, living away from where I grew up, and the church where I grew up. I mean I know people here, but I only know their lives from the past few years; I don't know the history behind them. Unlike Y&R, in real life, people don't show flashbacks to explain the current story. No one rehashes their friends' lives in the coffee shop every time they see them. Y&R provides, in an odd way, a replacement for the community I lost when I moved away from the one I grew up in.

Monday, December 29, 2008

So much to say...

I really have had a great holiday, despite the drama. And truthfully, my drama is petty, especially when I compare it to my friend's homeless sister or my other friend's disturbed brother. I have a family that speaks to one another and basically feels compelled to see each other during the holidays. In other words, I am blessed.

My baby cousin (who is now 30) came to see me tonight. She is working at Fairfield Bay this week, and decided to drive into town to see us. That was really nice. I hardly get to see her anymore. She and I were close for years-- we both spent a lot of time at our grandmother's house, and as the oldest girl, it was my job (spoken or not) to look after the younger cousins. Not that I minded. I've always enjoyed looking out for people. So I baby sat here, I listened to her rattle about her friends and sisters and boyfriends. Our relationship changed when I married my husband and acquired my step-daughter. My cousin and step-daughter bonded, and I became a grown-up to her; her friend's step-mom, rather than her big cousin and friend.

So now, what we have is a changed relationship. She and my step-daughter drifted apart. But that's okay. What we have now is an adult relationship. And I think a good one. We talk mostly on Facebook, since I am not really a phone person. Anyway, tonight was nice.

Now, I should quit blogging and cleaning off my DVR and go to bed.

Saturday, December 27, 2008


So, I dropped the cooking part. With Kroger and their wonderful bakery down the street, just a couple of blocks away, who needs to cook? Maybe I am not quite as dumb as I look...

I hung the new home theater speakers, except the one in the corner I can't reach. It will drive dh crazy enough to do it soon, since it is unbalanced. :)

The house is a clean as it is going to get this weekend. Which is not to say that you should consider eating off anything but my kitchen table. But I am no longer having an anxiety attack over the idea of someone seeing it. I have some baskets that are overstuffed. And magazines stacked on a bookshelf. But I can live with this. Which is a good thing, because people are coming in half an hour!


Well, Christmas has come and gone. We had, of course, family drama. What's a holiday without drama? This is my brother's year to go to his wife's family for Christmas. Fine. I think that is a fairly stupid arrangement, but whatever. On years they come to our house, his wife's mother frequently comes along. Which is great. We love her. Anyway. I thought that, since he would not be coming to our parents' home for Christmas, that we could just all get together on Christmas eve at my house, have dinner, open presents, etc. Together. Nope. Not happening. He and his wife and daughter did come over and we had lunch with my parents. His family and mine exchanged gifts. My kids opened their presents from us (we always do this on Christmas eve). My step-daughter and her husband came over and opened our presents to them (they don't buy presents for us). Then we packed our stuff and traipsed to my parents' house for Christmas. My brother and his wife and his wife are having Christmas at our folks' house today.

I, on the other hand, am at home getting ready for a Christmas party for my college friends (at least the ones in the area), at least a select group of them; i.e., the group that all speaks to each other. So, I need to clean off the coffee tables and pick up around the edges of the house. And cook. Definitely cook.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Snow Day!!!

Yesterday, I was out visiting a couple of our partner schools without my cell phone. I am not a cell-phone-glued-to-my-ear kind of person, but I do like to have it when I drive. Anyway, visited one partner school in the morning, killed some time at Barns and Nobel and visited the other school.

Meanwhile, Conway schools dismissed due to the weather. And the business in Little Rock started shutting down. I leave Hall High, which is in West Little Rock and get on the interstate (this is normally a 10 minute trip). An hour later, I got to the Cantrell exit, where I just got off. I poked my GPS until it found me a route out of Little Rock that did not require being on interstate anything.

So I head out through Perry County. In the dark. And the ice that has by this time accumulated on the road. I put the car in low gear down Wye Mountain, and made it down alive. I left Hall at about 3:15 and made it home after six. That was a long long trip.

Today, of course, we are all home. And it has been a pretty good day. I installed a new memory chip on my computer (for a total of 2GB of memory!), got permission from my adviser to take a Children's literature class and have it count toward my degree program, and got my grade for the class I took (A-, which is a bit better than I expected). I have not, however, managed to make my house presentable. That is okay, though. Tomorrow is another (snow) day!!

Friday, December 12, 2008

A sigh or relief; Or It is all over but the shoutin'

I just turned in my final exam. Two questions out of the three listed. I could list them here, but really they are still too painful to think about.

My niece's birthday is this weekend, so we have family stuff. And next weekend is the weekend before Christmas? How did time pass so quickly?

I gave up and bought a new Christmas tree this week, because my old one is in the back of a large storage unit. My plan this spring is to empty that and sell the stuff inside. The problem is just having the time to go through it.

On to other things. Monday was probably the worst day I have had recently. My class that I was planning to take this spring was canceled. And while I was thinking about, well, fretting about that, and about scheduling a get together with my college friends and compromising on a Christmas date with my brother, I backed into our neighbor's mail box, shattering the back glass of my van.

Todd had W at his therapists, but I called and cried to him. Todd got me some plastic to tape over the gaping hole. I still had to take the kids to 4-H for the Christmas party. And where I somehow became the grown-up in charge. So I packed them up and threw them out we all went home.

The rest of the week? I have worked on my final. But now it is over. OVER!!!!

Thursday, December 04, 2008


My semester is almost done, for better or for worse. I am sitting here at my desk making instant coffee, writing because I promised myself I would.

What is on my mind? I am panicked about money, for a change. One of our credit cards-- an offer that came in the mail, (If you don't know, don't ever accept those. There are always better ones, but you have to look.) has gone over 30%. We have not missed payments, and our credit is average (too many student loans, mostly). So I really need to pay that off. And my van has been in the shop three times in six weeks, and I had to have some expensive medical tests done to find out that I don't absorb vitamin B very well. And I lost the fight with the insurance company, so I am paying retail for my son's ADHD medication. And, well, we're teachers. And I am in grad school, so I don't have time to pull in any freelance jobs.

On the bright side, Christmas shopping is done. One more small gift for a party is all I have left. I do however, still have to thoroughly clean my house. And possibly paint my living room, because that Ace-bandage pinky-beige is on my last nerve. I don't want to hang anything on those ugly walls. So all the stuff that belongs on walls is leaned up in the corner. Adding to the clutter in my living room.

So, yeah, that is what's on my mind.