Oct 31, 2007


I've been wanting to do this for a while, but never found the time to figure it out. I finally learned how and this is my very first mosaic - just a bunch of pictures that I like. Some of them are things I enjoy, things I want to do, places I want to see. Others are just beautiful pictures.

1. paris sign, 2. type, 3. poker, 4. hangers, 5. portillos, 6. addison, 7. fall leaves, 8. glasses, 9. strawberry, 10. apples, 11. arch, 12. yarn, 13. tulip, 14. slots, 15. french bakery, 16. books

Oct 30, 2007

Happy Halloween...CSI Style

We celebrated Halloween a day early - for some odd reason Davenport celebrates this holiday the day before, but has their Halloween parade on Halloween. Yeah, I don't get it, either. However, with the weather so nice, and Duncan so sick with bronchitis, we decided to celebrate in Davenport. We made sure we got some pics of our costumes. This year's theme was CSI (with Duncan going as the headless dead body). I have to thank Marie for the costume idea! By the way, Duncan made his costume entirely on his own:

Oct 29, 2007

What I've Been Doing the Last 5 Minutes

*Paying bills
*Waiting for our server to be connected at work so I can start my day
*Sitting in part workout clothes, part jammies in front of my laptop at home
*Wishing it had been my Cubbies that won the World Series
*Waiting for the Excedrin to kick in
*Watching the clock because I have to get food in the crockpot by 8:30 AM
*Flipping through old issues of Advancing Philanthropy
*Being shocked that I only owe $14.20 for my mammogram
*Reminding myself that I need to start keeping a "What I'm Grateful For" list (see the above item regarding the mammogram)

Oct 28, 2007


Shitty migraine all day. I'm just now feeling somewhat better.

Oct 24, 2007

My New Thing

My mom just called to tell me that my cousin is pregnant. Let me rephrase that. My cousin, the bitch, is pregnant. She always was a bitch. The last time I saw her - this past July at her brother's wedding - she was really sweet and we sat and gossiped for over an hour. So, maybe she isn't a bitch...but for the sake of this conversation we'll say she is. She is pregnant. I am not. I am a lot older than her and got married before her, so I should be pregnant first, right? It's selfish of me, but that's how I feel right now.

Anyway...everyone seems to be pregnant these days. That is, everyone but me. We're obsessed with all the pregnant women in Hollywood, so it seems that the new "thing" is to be pregnant. Well, here's my new thing - I'm not going to have any kids. I don't want to have kids. I don't like kids.

So don't ask me when I'm going to have a baby because the answer is this - I'm not. It's my new thing...

Edited to add: And please don't try to convince me otherwise.

Oct 23, 2007

I Am Part Italian, You Know...

You Belong in Rome

You're a big city soul with a small town heart
Which is why you're attracted to the romance of Rome
Strolling down picture perfect streets, cappuccino in hand
And gorgeous Italian people - could life get any better?

Oct 21, 2007

The Newest Member of the Family

Pebbles - My sister's new dog...

Thank You...I'll Be Here All Week

We're having some major work done at our office - painting and installing new carpet. The furniture in my office is being moved tomorrow at 7 AM, and painting begins tomorrow afternoon. Because the carpet isn't being installed until Saturday morning, my office needs to remain empty. This means I have to work from home all week. I already work from home one day a week, but I'm not sure how I feel about doing it the whole week. It will be weird. I drove home from work on Friday with half of my office in the trunk of my car.

Right now, all of that stuff is sitting in the foyer of our house, waiting to be turned into a temporary home office later tonight.

Oct 20, 2007

A Few More Thoughts

It is very lonely, very sad, very isolating to have a migraine. There is only so much I can do...and nothing anyone else can do.

With the pain comes the sadness, the anxiety, the helplessness. I cry because I have no control over them. I wonder when the next one will come. I cry because I know that there will always be the next one.

Down For the Count

I woke up this morning with a migraine. Completely unexpected (yes, I can pretty much tell when I should be getting a bad one). I occasionally do get unexpected migraines, but they usually aren't too bad. This one was unexpected and bad.

Two Fiorcet, one Relpax, and an Excedrin later, I still have some pain. I don't expect this to go away anytime soon, but it is much more tolerable. I went upstairs at 12 PM to try to sleep. I woke up at 2 PM. I forced myself to get up and try to eat - the amount of medication I had in my system was making me nauseous. I made the most carb-filled meal I could think of (I crave starchy foods when my head aches like this). I made some pasta with butter, olive oil, and Parmesan cheese. Do you know what it tasted like? Heaven. It was food nirvana. And I drank a Pepsi that was so cold, my throat burned and my eyes watered.

I had some plans to get stuff done around the house today, but I have come to terms with the fact that it isn't going to happen. I will be lucky if I can get myself off the couch - not because the pain is so severe any longer, but because my muscles are tired and weak and I'm in such a fog. I happened to put on the TV and saw that on American Movie Classics, it is "Hitchcock Saturday." Perfect. I plan to stay on the couch, watching some of my favorite movies - The Birds and Dial M For Murder. My favorite is Strangers On a Train, but it doesn't look like that one is on today.

Patrick is out for the day, and I don't mind a bit. It's pointless for him to be stuck at home with me feeling so awful. I called him and told him that I couldn't cook dinner tonight. I told him everything I wanted - to get Chinese food from my favorite restaurant, to wrap myself up in a warm blanket, and to sit with him on our couch and watch Hitchcock movies all night. I'm not normally like that - whiny and teary-eyed. I feel sorry for myself right now and I feel like giving in to it.

I expect to get bad migraines toward the end of next week, so it looks like I will have to do this all over again...

Oct 18, 2007

Check It Out

Normally I just add new blogs that I love to my list on the right side of this page. However, I have to point you to this new one I found: The "Blog" of "Unnecessary" Quotation Marks

Jason, my fellow grammar geek, I think you're going to get hooked on this one.

Pictures I Should Have Posted a While Ago...

Yes, I'm a dork and took a picture of the TV on this fabulous night.
Light the Night:

Boo is recovering nicely and found a new hiding spot. Don't worry, the dishes were already dirty.

The cool table from IKEA that I put together all by my little self.

Pictures from my dad's birthday party. Vann is not really licking the cake...it's all an optical illusion...

My parents' 40th wedding anniversary

Celebrating my cousin's birthday later that same day.

Oct 17, 2007

It's Raining, It's Pouring...

I love the rain. Really, I do. I find that it energizes me in a weird way. It motivates me and I tend to get a lot of work done because I don't feel like I'm missing out on anything. Today was a different story. I've been running around like crazy preparing for Duncan's birthday (he'll be 11 years old n Friday). Baking a cake, wrapping gifts, putting together goody bags, and even making treats (homemade banana muffins) for his b-day party at school. It was cloudy all day and even rained on and off for the afternoon. All of a sudden, it started pouring. I could hear it on the roof and against the windows - even a distant rumble of thunder. Suddenly I was exhausted. My body felt like it was working in slow motion, and I was fighting to keep my eyes open. I finally succumbed and went upstairs to take a quick nap (Note: I don't do well with naps. I am notorious for getting super cranky when I wake up). As soon as I snuggled under the blankets, the phone rang. It was my mother-in-law inquiring about the birthday party. Then, my husband called and I knew that my intended nap was never going to happen. I came downstairs, groggy and trying to find my way through the dark house, and decided to finish dinner.

I still feel like I'm in that funk. I can't quite seem to shake it. I'm trying to allow myself to feel the funk, but make sure I still read, write, exercise (that's a tough one), and engage in my other everyday activities.

The only other interesting thing that happened today was getting my annual flu shot. Good times, people. My arm is sore and swollen. That happens every year. One year I got a lump in my arm the size of an egg. It's not like that this time, but it does hurt to lift my arm. I used to think it was psychosomatic, but it actually hurts to touch or move my arm.

I lead an exciting life...

Oct 16, 2007

Hemming and Hawing

I subscribe to a free service that tells me how many people have viewed my blog, where they're from, and how they found my site. Lately, I've been getting lots of hits from people all over the country. What is the number one Google search that got them to my blog? How to hem your pants!

A very long time ago I wrote a post about how I finally learned how to hem my pants. Apparently, hemming your pants is all the rage because people are Googling that like crazy! I went back and checked that post. The funniest part about it is my Dad's comment - I just love that man!

Of course this reminds me that I do need to hem a pair of awesome pants I just got at Old Navy...

Oct 15, 2007

We Finally Decided On Our Halloween Costumes...

Patrick and I will be crime scene investigators, and Duncan will be a "dead body." He's definitely an 11-year old boy...

Oct 13, 2007

Bring In 'Da Funk

'Da funk is here. I wasn't sure if it was just my stressful week at work or the change in weather, but I can feel my feet firmly planted in the funk - tired, lethargic, no desire to do anything but sit in comfy clothes and plant myself on the couch. We managed to go to dinner last night, but the large group sitting behind me was loud and annoying, and for the first time in a long time I felt just a hint of anxiety. I fought it off, ate what I could, and was thrilled when we finally left. Even our regular trip to Border's wasn't as much fun as it usually is. Patrick and I start at the bargain section and then go our separate ways in the store, meeting up later in the evening to look through the books we've picked up along the way. I browsed the literature section and then the cookbooks, but my heart just wasn't completely in it (although we are going back tonight to use our 20% off coupon for a book called "Big Fat Cookies"). I sat on the leather couch fighting off sleep while Patrick browsed the history section. Then it was home - on the couch in my jammies watching some baseball.

Patrick wants to go to Galena today. I said I didn't want to, but am wondering if I should make the effort to go. Maybe I can force myself out of this before it gets too bad. It's not a long drive, and maybe the cool, fall air will do me some good.

Oct 12, 2007


You know you're exhausted when you wake up in the morning (much later than you should be getting up), sit up and think, "I can't wait to go to bed tonight."

I haven't been getting enough sleep. I'm also slipping into a bit of a funk. Is it the weather? Is it just that time of year?

Whatever it is...I cannot wait to go to bed tonight.

Oct 11, 2007


I had a completely bizarre dream last night. I had just found out I was pregnant, but never really experienced the pregnancy because the next thing I knew, I was in the hospital having a C-section. I remember being in the hospital afterward and realizing that I never got to see the baby. Patrick took me to see her (yes, it was a girl), but when we got to the crib, I looked in and was shocked. I said, "That's not a baby!". Instead I saw a girl that was closer to 3-years old. Not only that, but half of her face and her entire back was covered in black hair (the "werewolf syndrome"). Patrick then turns to me and smiles, telling me that it was just a joke and that she wasn't our baby. We move on to another crib, but this time when I looked in all I saw was a huge head attached to a tiny baby's body. Patrick laughed again and said he was still kidding. Finally, he lifts up his arms and holds up a perfect baby girl wrapped in a blanket. This was our baby. It was then that I realized that we never gave her a name because I never actually went through the pregnancy, and subsequently never bought any baby name books. Suddenly we were surrounded by books, frantically searching for a name, but I kept calling her Charlotte (even though Patrick doesn't like that name).

Then I woke up.

So weird. I definitely want to investigate this one a bit more...

Oct 5, 2007

Life List

I saw this post today and it seriously energized me. I have been swamped at work, overcome by nasty migraines, and overwhelmed by a general sense of fatigue and boredom. The other day I posted about how I've been letting my life slip away from me, and ever since then, I've felt this need to be more proactive in life. Honestly, I haven't done anything about it, but I can feel it bubbling beneath my surface.

Then I found the post about life lists. What a fantastic idea! A list of 100 things we want to accomplish in our lives. It sounds a lot easier than it really is...and I have only begun the process. The tricky part is what to include - do I say I want to vacation in the South of France even though I know I don't think I could handle the long flight? It's something I desperately want to do, but I don't know if I can get on the plane. Is it more important to create an accurate life list, or to be able to cross off things on my list? Will I feel like a failure if I add France to my list and never go? I think I'll add France and see what happens...

I'm going to finish my list by next week and then I'm going to post it here. I challenge other people to do the same.

Oct 4, 2007

God Doesn't Care If You Hit A Homerun

This is what I shouted at the TV last night after one of the Diamondbacks hit a homerun off the Cubs and then pointed to the sky as he crossed home plate. Granted, he very well could have been dedicating that homerun to a deceased member of his family. OK, I'll let him get away with that, but it really made me think. And if you're wondering, yes, I will be able to pull together a post about baseball and God - I'm good like that.

Do I start at the beginning or at the end? Hmm...I'll start at the end and work my way back.

When it comes to religion, I don't know what I believe any more. There is someone I "know" through the world of blogs who is battling Stage IV cancer. I'm not going into specifics because it is that family's personal battle and I have no right to identify them. I've been reading their blog for a while now and I like to check in on their progress. They are very spiritual people (yes, they are Catholics), and I am always amazed and impressed by the positive attitude they maintain throughout this process. They are parents (about my age), with very young children.

I'm not even sure where I'm going with this post. I know what I want to say, but I am having trouble getting there.

They frequently ask people to pray for them - for healing and a miracle. This is where I begin to question my faith. I was raised Catholic. I was taught that when people are sick, you pray for them. You pray for their healing and you believe in miracles. As a kid, this seemed OK because I never knew any sick people, so I never needed to question the validity of this. When my aunt got sick, we prayed. I prayed throughout the entire 8 months of her illness. It is the transformation of my prayers that interest me. I started by praying that the doctors were wrong about the cancer (they weren't), and then I prayed that the cancer wasn't as bad as they originally thought (it was). With the medical results to back that up, I started praying that my aunt would handle the treatments and would get better. She did get better...quickly. It was definitely a tough road for her, with the surgery, physical therapy, chemo, and radiation, but she did it. By the end of January, she was "cured" (don't get me started on the use of this word by her doctor).

Within a month things got bad again, and we started praying again. I had done the research and knew the grim prognosis - cancer within the central nervous system is not only incurable, it spreads quickly and most patients succumb withing a few months. I didn't tell my family, but I know my mom knew what was happening. We sat on the phone one afternoon and she said to me, "I just don't know what to pray for anymore." Praying for healing was futile. There weren't going to be any miracles. She was not going to survive this. I remember my brain switching from having faith to not believing, like turning on and off a lamp.

When do you make that switch? Is it wrong to stop believing? Do some people believe in miracles despite the medical evidence and the odds? A few days later my mom said, "I stopped praying for her to get better because I know that can't happen. Now I pray for her to be comfortable and at peace with death."

I know that things are not going well with my fellow bloggers. There are calls for healing prayers. Calls for miracles. I am happy that they have such faith, but it breaks my heart to read that. I remember those desperate times when I thought that saying one more prayer would make things better. I feel guilty that I don't believe in that anymore. But I can't. In my mind, what's going to happen is going to happen. You can't pray it away.

I am not here to criticize anyone's religious beliefs. Sometimes it makes me angry to hear people say that if enough people pray, and they pray hard enough, someone can be healed. Did my family not care enough? Did we not pray hard enough? I know that's not true - we did all we could when it came to prayers and the doctors did all they could when it came to treatments.

It's just too much pressure to think that you can control the outcome of someone's life by saying or not saying enough prayers. It's too heavy of a burden. I felt it. We all felt it.

I know there's a point somewhere in there...

Thank Goodness There Are Five Games!

The Cubs lost last night. Disappointing? Yes. Shocking? Not really. Just about everything I read or heard about the game was that the Cubs would lose the first game to the Diamondbacks' ace pitcher - Webb. He pitched a great game...as did Zambrano. It really was exciting to watch such a pitching duel. I only wish we had come out on top.

There is another game tonight, though, and with Lilly pitching, I think we can do it. Our pitching staff is much deeper than the Diamondbacks (basically, they're relying on Webb), and if our offense gets hot...look out.

On a side note, Patrick told me last night that he doesn't think our marriage can survive this postseason. I guess it's because I'm superstitious, neurotic, and a bit dramatic. I also cuss like a sailor and can trash-talk like nobody's business. Deep down he loves it...

Oct 1, 2007

More Secrets

This really jumped out at me today. Not sure why. OK, I do know why...

I need more courage to do the things I've always dreamed of doing.