Tuesday, March 30, 2010


I took yesterday afternoon off to work on The Thesis.

While I have the support of my co-workers and office to finish The Thesis and could easily arrange my schedule to work a five-hour day, A. had to work an 11-hour day in a field he hates.. He really hates his job. He hates it so much. (He does like his co-workers, however. Thank goodness for tiny graces, yes?) He has been applying for work in his field for a year. He has been (what feels like) rejected for a year. It is really, really starting to get to him. I feel so helpless.

When I arrived at home, I hunkered down at the computer and focused. I was determined to get as much done as possible in my allotted time. At 6:00 p.m., I saved my work and headed to the kitchen. I made a family recipe I got from A,'s mom and had a warm, comforting dinner ready for A. when he got home an hour later. I had a fire going so the house was cozy amidst the 50-mph winds outside.

I basically tried to make our home a huge hug for him.

It felt like all I could do. It felt good to take care of him. It still feels good.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Friday Five

1. A.'s friend's mom passed away a few weeks ago when A. went up to stay with his friend. It was good that they were together, I think, for both of them. She was surrounded by family and wasn't in pain. It was the kind of passing you hope for someone you love.

His friend just found out his father has cancer. It is a small growth, but he is not in good health and won't be able to tolerate chemo. So, we are hoping that surgery and radiation will be enough.

Please continue to send good thoughts/vibes/karma.

2. The Thesis is closer to done. Please send good thoughts/vibes/karma my way, if you can spare them.

3. I am really screwing up an important work deadline by taking two days off a week to work on The Thesis. I am trying to convince myself that sometimes shit happens and this is necessary collateral damage. Truth be told, I would much rather the damage be done at work (and unfortunately, likely some work relationships) than at home. Of that I am certain.

4. There are a loads of little birds outside my work window. And hoo, boy! They have a lot on their minds right now. They are really chatting it up. It is delightful.

5. I made my own homemade saltine crackers the other night. They are ridiculously easy and SO! YUMMY!

I also made the Pioneer Woman's Great-Grandmother Iny's cake. The buttermilk only had a couple of days before it would expire, so I had to make it. This is no time to be wasteful!

If you like spice cake, you will love this cake. Don't be afraid of the ingredients. Just go make it right now. It will make just about everything ok.

Happy Friday to you!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


Yesterday, A. and I awoketo Buster making a total ruckus in my closet. I threw his blanket in there the other day when I was vacuuming and he has since made my closet his little nighttime den. I find it kind of sweet.

A. got up to investigate, as it was early enough my legs refused to leave the warm bed. He started laughing - hard - and turned on my closet light. I fumbled for my glasses on my nightstand and looked over to see just what the hell was going on at 5:50 a.m.

Buster had managed to get two of my bras, hanging from the closet doorknob, wrapped around his neck like a noose and was stuck. He couldn't lay down and he couldn't leave the closet. He was sitting up, perfectly straight, ears up and wagging his tail, looking at A. with anticipation. He'd been rescued!

Dogs! My God, I love the dogs. And my honey-pie. He was laughing so hard and was so sweet to Buster. I just melt when he is tender to these two creatures we've vowed to care for. LOVE.


I took today off to work on The Thesis. It is a perfect day to be holed up in the back office.

The wind is howling and I can't see the neighbor's house for the blowing snow. This is new snow that arrived last night. Prior to this latest falling, nearly half of the winter's snow had melted! We were making progress! I estimated we only needed three more weeks for the rest of the snow to melt and the roads to dry out so we could re-grate and level them.

Now, I just feel like I am stuck on that goddamn planet in Star Wars, the shitty wintry one.


I am off to get another cup of hot coffee and then I need to dig back in. Progress is slow, but it is progress nonetheless! Happy Tuesday!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Friday Five

1. It is snowing. Again. The reports all differ, with some sources predicting a couple of inches and others a couple of feet (absurd!). Whatever.

2. All of the administrative crap for The Thesis is completed and accepted! I managed to jump through at least three moving hoops! And one that was on fire! I am a goddess!

My degree check went through and all the relevant departments have been alerted to my intention of graduating. All that is left is the actual, official letter from IRB (rather than the unofficial email I received) and the actual completed and accepted THESIS. Both of which have me nervous. Please, please materialize!

3. The Thesis is moving along well-ish. Not nearly as quickly as I would like, nor as eloquently or insightful. Again: Whatever.

4. I have not practiced meditating for over a week now, and boy, can I tell. I can feel the nagging, incessant anxiety of The Thesis starting to follow me, seep into my thoughts, regardless of where my mind is or should be.

I made a concerted effort last night to put aside time to meditate. I slept so much better and didn't feel that ever-present buzz of anxiety when I woke up.

I whole-heartedly endorse this meditating nonsense!

5. Tonight I am going to embark on a search for muck boots. Where does one find muck boots? A ranch outfitters store?

I have come to terms knowing that they are going to be necessary. Yuck.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

The Smell of Poo in the Spring

The mud. It is epic. It is never-ending.

Our five-foot tall snowdrifts are finally melting, but there is nowhere for the water to go. The land around here isn't used to a lot of moisture, and it is more like dirt than soil. Prairie grass is not known for holding the ground together when it is drenched.

Needless to say, we are knee deep in slippery, snotty, tenacious mud.

The car cannot make it to the house. The mud goes more than halfway up the tires of the truck, and there is one section of road that has ruts at least three feet deep. It has been iffy, getting from the highway to the house, even in four-wheel-drive.

The drifts are still a good 2-3 feet high. We aren't even close to the other side of this yet.


The winds this year were just so that our backyard is ENTIRELY drifted in, up PAST the top of the doghouse. We've had to dig paths out for the dogs so they can get around and get to the doghouse. Buster now uses the drifts to get on top of the dog house to lay in the sun. That has always been Belle's favorite spot and a surefire way to get away from Buster for a while. Now I find them sitting up there together, watching the hills.

The thing is, not only is the backyard going to be the most hideously muddy pit once this finally melts, it is also going to be full of poo. Currently, there are layers of poo strata in those drifts, results of storm after storm after storm. (And forget about trying to pick up poo frozen to the snow. It just doesn't work very well.) Eventually, this is all going to have to be dealt with, in one stinky, soggy, hideous mess.


Usually the wind blows the snow away and we have very little melt to deal with. We can attend to the poo in the backyard regularly, and it isn't an issue.


I haven't the foggiest idea how to deal with this. I mean, the actual logistics of such an operation.

Thank goodness we most likely have a few more weeks to figure it out.


Friday, March 5, 2010

Friday Five

1. We received news last night that A.'s friend's mom will most likely not make it through the day. Please pray/send good thoughts to A.'s friend, JB and his family. Also, please keep A. in your thoughts; it is very much like losing another parent to him.

Maybe think of me, too, that I might be a good support to those who need it right now.

2. I did manage to write another page for The Thesis last night before, well, things came up.

3. The air this morning smells so clean. It has been in the 40s the past few days and snow is starting to turn to slushy ickiness and the road to the house is pure mud. (My car can't get through it, and is parked at the highway. Yay, Winter!) It snowed last night, a heavy wet snow but it just made everything so clean. It is still quite warm outside, and it is just delightful. I believe I will go for a walk over my lunch hour and just revel in it.

4. I am craving ice water with slices of cucumber and lemon. If you've never tried this, I highly recommend it. Come to think of it, that is kind of what the air smells like today. Just so damned refreshing!

5. My nephew, M. I am sorry, but objectively, HE IS THE CUTEST KID IN THE WHOLE WORLD.

Thursday, March 4, 2010


Eh, my thesis progress was minimal last night, I only got a couple of pages roughly written. Bleh. But. Two poor pages is better than no good ones! Right?


Tonight's evening is wide open, so I should be able to get quite a bit done tonight. I need to feel like things are moving forward more quickly than they have been the past few days.


I am still planning on taking tomorrow night off. I like to take Friday night's off, because 1) I am usually much to tired and loopy to make any kind of sense after 5:00 p.m. on Friday, and 2) it is just SAD and PATHETIC to come home Friday night after a full work week and work on HOMEWORK. No way.


Damn! I just realized the Office Baby is due tonight! Gah! If I get lots done before the show, maybe I can dive back in after? Shit. Now I really wish we had DVR.


Happy Thursday to you!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Diggin' In and Diggin' Out

I have taken a few days off from Thesis Bullshit and really need to get my act in gear. I want to Omaha for my nephew's second birthday, and I refuse to apologize for that. But, the Thrusday before I left? And last night? Yeah, I had no excuse. I should have been working.


*brisk hand clap*

So! I have a game plan for tonight, and am determined to have five new pages of written material before 8:30 p.m.


I need you all to bug me tomorrow and ask me how many pages I finished. Hopefully the pressure of having to come clean will keep my butt in my home office chair.


It has warmed up above freezing for the first time in months, and it is DELIGHTFUL. The mud? Not so much. My car is parked at the highway because it can't get through the mud to the house. It never ends. Bah.


Happy Wednesday to you!