Archives for August 2014

And August Oozes its Way Out with 1000% Humidity

81 | 365 - August 24, 2014

Six more days left of August. I say that as if it means something – as if September 1 rolls around and the weather will flip the switch and the temperature will be tolerable, my allergies will abate and I will no longer have hair so frizzy that it can only be contained by finally succumbing to the ponytail.

But six more days and as we near September first, the temperature has kicked up a few notches as has the humidity and OH MY GOD IT’S THE WORST.

(Snow and sub-zero temperatures are also THE WORST so as you can clearly tell: I have weather issues.)

But August is almost over and I AM SO GLAD BECAUSE UGH.

Let’s cross our fingers that it’s 65 and sunny on Monday.

Thursday Ten: One Foot In Front Of The Other Edition

1. I made it through his birthday and the anniversary of his passing and well, it hasn’t been the easiest week of my life but on Monday, several of us were sharing memories of him on Facebook and it was nice to have people to share that with – we all miss him so much and we all have such amazing memories — to pool them together was really a bit of a relief.
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2. And then I stood in the same spot where I stood a year ago and watched the sun set. My last goodbye to my grandpa was on his birthday last year – we had been sure that “that was it” that we said our goodbyes. Somehow he had managed to hang on another day and I couldn’t bear to say goodbye again… so last year on his birthday I watched the sun set. This year I did the same. He’s still with us. Still with me.

3. Sigh. On a lighter note… Just a week and a half left of summer and it’s BACK TO SCHOOL for the girls. They are bickering at toxic levels right now, though, so… it’s about time.

4. Because I was tired of my wretched burgundy door – after 12 years of hating it! I finally painted it this past weekend. Behr’s Cloudless. I sort of love it. I haven’t yet painted my shutters and I know my neighbors are wondering about that – if I’m going to leave those nasty shutters clashing forever (no, I’m not) – but I’ll get to it soon.
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5. It hasn’t been a very summer-y summer, weatherwise so I should feel guilty about complaining about normal summer weather but UGH THE HUMIDITY. (No: I don’t feel guilty). I was just not cut out to sweat so much. Give me that 70 degree weather back please.

6. Protein drinks with powdered peanut butter is an actual thing in my life now. Sigh. Concerted effort to get back into shape and that means eating less garbage. I miss garbage eating. KETTLE COOKED POTATO CHIPS NOM NOM NOM.

7. Realizing the window between driving in road construction and driving on ice is very very small.

8. Checked out a bunch of books from the library. They were all awful. I love that I can just shut them and return them without any guilt or wasted money. Love the library.

9. I don’t think that Facebook is going to suck my brain out through their messenger app but ugh I don’t want to download another app. (Also, my nearly dead phone with peanut butter in the receiver has limited space and not worthy of an app I don’t need).

10. Already making plans for the weekend and those plans involve TACOS. I win.

Happy Birthday. I Miss You.

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Dear Grandpa,

I have had a lot of thoughts in my head over the past few weeks – well, over the past year even, if I’m really being honest – and as today drew closer, I found myself overwhelmed with an odd mix of extreme sadness and determination that I would not let today get the best of me. It’s early yet, and time will tell, but I will do my best today to honor you in a way that would have made you proud. Perhaps, I’ll duct tape something.

It seems unfair to have to endure both your birthday and the anniversary of your death within a 48 hour span, but perhaps that’s just a way to rip off the bandaid and get all the truly hard hurting done at once, and then find a way to put one foot in front of the other until the next hurdles – holidays.

Which is not to say that it’s only difficult on those big days – but those are the days it’s worse.

Most of the time, though, when I think of you it’s with love and I am able to put away the sadness of a year ago at this time. The sadness of saying goodbye.

Most of the time I think of things like potato pancakes and duct tape, of you shoveling the driveway even though everyone offered to have it plowed for you, how you always had Lifesavers in church, and how you pronounced my youngest daughter’s name funny. How you were so proud of them. How you were so proud of me. How you sent me postcards when I was a kid living in California and when we’d talk on the phone we’d race to say “Gotcha!” to each other. How you taught me to start my car with a clothes pin. How you were such an awful driver (you were. Grandma said one day, as we sat by your side during those last weeks, that she always figured you’d perish in the car – those were her words: Perish in the car. She followed that with, “Not that he was a bad driver” but yes, yes you were). The sound of your voice singing. When you called grandma “babe” when you were planning to renew your vows on your 60th anniversary.

You were and are so very loved – and I miss having you around. I hate that you’re not here. I wish you could see my daughters. I wish you could see that my life is coming back together. I’m glad you got to meet Chris and he got to meet you and these are all things I probably said last year right around this time but if I say them twice I must really mean them, right?

You were the glue that held us all together and since you’ve been gone there have been so few occasions where everyone’s been in the same place.

We didn’t get together on Father’s Day but we were all heart broken.

The thing is, you were so amazing. You were so strong for us. You were funny. You made us smile. You – just by being you – captured a permanent place in each of us and without you, it’s very clear that something’s absent.

And I don’t want to fill that void – but I don’t want to be sad either.

Sad feels ungrateful.

Some people are never as lucky as we were. Never as lucky as I was to have had someone like you in my life for so long (I’ve forgotten, grandpa, how old I am – isn’t that the funniest thing?).

We were blessed.

We were loved.

We miss you.

I miss you.

Forever grateful to have had you in my life.

i still love you.


Thursday Ten: I Don’t Relax Well edition

1. I took two days off this week – originally, Chris and I were going to head down to Black Dog Gelato (YUM!) in Chicago to take a gelato making class. I know, I know, it seems silly – but their gelato is PHENOMENAL and the class was set up so each person could design their own flavor, take it home, blah blah blah. It just sounded fun! Plus – I LOVE CHICAGO. A mini-escape seemed the perfect adventure as summer is nearing its end – buuuuut… the class was canceled. I have therefore spent the past two days at home cleaning my house and DOING stuff because I don’t do well just sitting on my butt doing nothing. Not a fun vacation. My house is clean, which is good, but ugh.

2. My Facebook feed has been flooded this week with back-to-school posts, but here in Michigan, the girls have another few weeks until they start just after Labor Day. Admittedly this summer has flown by faster than any other I can remember – and usually by now, we’re all crawling out of our skin waiting for school to start. Perhaps it’s because I’m working full time this year – I’m not sure. I feel like I haven’t been around as much as other years which stinks – but it also means that yeah, we’re at August 14 and it’s still fairly calm around here. Calm is good.

3. Facebook has also been filled with a lot of posts about Robin Williams. I can’t think of a celebrity death that has moved me as his has and I think it’s because Robin Williams was in several of my favorite movies. Though I wasn’t as much a fan of his comedic roles, I know that his art brought a lot of joy to many, me included, and it’s a huge loss that he’s gone. And while I don’t have much to contribute to the discussion on depression and Robin Williams’ death, one of the pieces that moved me tremendously was this one from Casey.

4. I bought into the hype and I bought the square marshmallows for s’mores. I’m a chump. The kids said they’re better. Um. Okay.
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5. When you go to get a hair cut and you say, “I NEED A CHANGE!” and you walk out with… the exact same hair cut. Sigh. That.

6. I love Apple and am pretty much a fan girl but WHOA, does iTunes get less and less usable? I hate its format now. I want old school iTunes back.

7. Speaking of fangirling… Less than a month until the rumored announcement about the newest iPhones. I’ll be waiting to get one. Mostly because my phone doesn’t work because the receiver is probably full of peanut butter.

8. Picking songs again for my 365. It’s my least favorite part of the whole shebang. Ugh.

9. My allergies are absolutely miserable right now. Damn you, ragweed!

10. If the weather holds, my project for the weekend will be to paint my front door. I’ve done so much painting around this house – huge rooms, even – I’m not sure why I’m letting this door project intimidate me. What I do know is I hate the color red, and so by default I’m not loving this burgundy door I’ve lived with for twelve years. Time for it to go. And yeah, I actually considered buying a new door versus painting this one. My wallet won: paint it is.

Thursday Ten: Swimming In Dog Puke edition

1. He has now thrown up just about every day for the past week. He seems fine otherwise, but I’m hoping that getting him groomed yesterday solves the problem. Because he’s a labradoodle, he doesn’t actually shed – so when his fur gets long and unruly and muppet-y, I think he chokes on it when he grooms himself. Hairball-esque gag reflexes trigger puppy puke puddles in my dining room. Sigh. Do not like. Hope he’s on the mend.
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2. Summer is FLYING by. My Facebook feed is full of first day of school pictures already! I can’t believe it – but here the kids will start school in just under a month. A few more weeks of summer schedules – and then the kids can start going to bed at normal times again! WHOOP WHOOP! (Seriously, bedtime keeps creeping later and later as summer rolls on and then I look at the clock and I’m all, “GO TO BED!” Kind of. I mean, they’re in bed by ten most nights but oy.)

3. So I watched a YouTube video of a crying baby going nuts when Katy Perry’s “Dark Horse” came on and aside from people letting their babies listen to stupid music, the other thing that blew me away (but not surprised me) was how kooky the comments were. People are nuts.

4. Speaking of… do you really think an IQ test you take on Facebook is really gonna be accurate (because I gotta say, there’s a few of them I don’t think would break 100)…

5. Top Chef Duels > Chopped

6. Chris and I took a day trip to Traverse City last week to spend the day admiring gorgeous scenery and tasting yummy wines. I love Traverse City and it was really a much needed break from life to get away from things for a bit, to spend an amazing day with Chris and to treat ourselves to the day. Oddly enough, despite my not being a “dip on crackers” kind of person – I’ve been kind of craving the cherry jalapeno dip served with crackers at L Mawby. Already wanting to go back!
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7. I need a change. I need a hair cut. I can’t decide what to do. Let’s see if I actually get ANYTHING beyond a trim this evening when I go in for a hair cut.

8. Only a few weeks remain of this year’s 365 – it blows my mind how quickly this year went.

9. So, all that StitchFix hubbub and I can’t decide if I care if they’re marking up clothes so drastically because HEY I suck at shopping and I figured there was an upcharge and all. I should want to cancel my next shipment but I really need shirts without having to go to a mall.

10. My twenty year high school reunion is next month. *gasp* I. Uh. How the hell has it been TWENTY YEARS since high school? I shouldn’t sound shocked – I feel every single one of those twenty years, but I shouldn’t be this old and UGH. I am. Whoopty-freaking-do. (And yeah, I’m probably going to the reunion.)