Fading Fast

I think I’ve done pretty well today on such a small amount of sleep. Considering I’m NOT a morning person to start with, starting my morning so early just causes me to feel I’m now entering the “jammie zone”… the time of evening when all I want to do is put on my jammies and either climb into bed (preferably pre-heated) or lounge on my overstuffed sofa with something yummy to eat and beverage of choice.

Please do NOT call me. I have had waaaay too many phone calls today. You want your order NOW. I do not want to give it to you NOW. This does not put me in a good mood. If you want me in a good mood, tell me there is ‘no rush’. That usually works. It means I will probably get it to you faster than you thought possible, but without the grouchy after-effects.

The telephone used to be my friend. Then I went to work at the institute of higher learning in our town. This is a reasonably large place and I was the first person that people spoke to when dialing the phone number listed in all publications, phone directories, and bathroom stalls. This meant I answered the phone at least 200 times a day. No longer is that true. After working in that position for almost a year, I was very glad to move up the food chain and no longer had to answer the phone. Ever.

Now have a totally different job but I still cringe when the phone rings. I pray that whoever is calling on our home phone will call me on my cell phone – I have caller ID on the cell that allows me to screen my calls and offer me the choice of letting them leave a voicemail or just ignoring them forever. DH doesn’t understand why I want to let the answering machine pick up the phone at home and let me decide if I really want to talk to whoever is calling. He however, has a love/hate relationship with his cell phone. When it rings he invariably yells “fucking phone!” loudly, then proceeds to answer in a normal tone of voice. I ask him if he says that when I call and he says no. He’s lying.

I don’t have the option at work of ignoring the phone or yelling obscene things at it. I am, however, last person to have to answer. When everyone else is out of the office, then I must answer. Or, of course, if the call is for me. Today most calls have been for me. I resigned myself about an hour ago to staying the full day. If I’m going to be tired, by God I’m going to be REALLY tired and if that means staying here until 5 answering the fucking phone, then I’ll do it.

It’s supposed to storm tomorrow. Rain, wind, cold. Maybe I’ll get to sleep in. I’ll put that in my happy thoughts and listen to the forecast later tonight. I just may not be able to stay awake for the big debate tonight… oh, well

Whine Whine Whine

I admit it. I’m a whiner. I never used to be, but in my older age I’m finding whining to be a perfectly acceptable pastime. When you are older everyone expects you to whine. I whine when I’m too cold. I whine when I’m hungry. I whine when I’m tired. I whine when I can’t think of anything to do except whine. Oh. Guess that’s redundant, huh? Right now I’m tired. I have every expectation of being further exhausted before I finally get to put my head on the pillow tonight. Part of it is this time of year (harvest), part of it is the full moon, some of it comes from waking up at 3 a.m. for no reason and being awake like it is the first day of school. Again, no real reason. I have nothing exciting happening in my life right now. I just opened my eyes and was UP. I’m anticipating being hungry in a short time. Then maybe I can find something else to whine about.

Tinfoil

Today we will begin the continuing saga of tinfoil. From time to time (about once a month) we will revisit the ever annoying properties of the full moon on the human body. Specifically mine. This may not be as facinating as it first appears.

I seem to be moon-sensitive. Perhaps this can be attributed to more water on the brain? I know the moon can influence the tides in the ocean, so perhaps it’s a mere physical sloshing in my head that creates strange dreams and odd wakeful periods in the night. Ask any emergency room personnel and they’ll confirm the increase in activity during a full moon. I’m not talking urban legend here, I’m talking to friends and family! It really does happen, right here in mid-America.

For as long as I can remember, it seems the full moon has been a harbinger of strange dreams. I have more remembered dreams than the ‘normal’ person as it is, and yes, I usually do dream in color. It doesn’t seem to be a factor if I can actually see the moon at the time of fullness. I’ve had issues when the weather has been overcast or when I had perfectly good, thick, moon-proof blinds. (Those of you who are faithful readers know that we are now living in a new house without such protection. Okay, yes, I did purchase blinds, but I didn’t say I had gotten them installed yet, right?) My DH likes to add his two-cents-worth in reminding me that ‘the full moon is full all the time – you just can’t see it’. Uh huh. Tell that to the brain.

As it is, I am once more wide-awake at 3 a.m. dreading the 6 a.m. alarm knowing tomorrow is going to be a shitty day because I’m going to be so damn tired. Yes, I hear you whispering “you should have stayed in bed” but I know myself and to be in bed right now would be a toss-fest and I’m just not up to that. Oh. Bad pun.

So I rise up out of my oh-so-comfortable (yes, I think I finally got the ‘number’ right) and warm bed and slink down to the family room so not to wake DH. I bring books and trail cats and find my laptop all plugged in and begging for some attention. I can’t resist a little blogging. Maybe talking to you is just the warm-milk placebo I needed.

There’s a Fly In My Soup

From time to time I am going to vent in this blog. If you don’t like violence, bad language and are not allowed into PG-14 movies, leave now. I mean it. Go away. I’m pissed.

As I’ve previously announced, I’m an only child. This is a curse and a blessing. More often a blessing. I wonder aloud many times what I have done giving my children siblings. Will they grow up and hate each other? So far I’ve not seen that side of things. They may have shown signs of wanting to kill each other when they were young, but they have seemed to grow out of it and at this point in time are getting along. Rather well, if I do say so myself. I am just the mom, tho’, so it’s possible they are holding long-term grudges that I will know nothing about until I’m long cold in the grave.

This brings me to my brother-in-law and his family. Part of me wouldn’t be so bitter toward his parenting skills except when our children where young and he and his wife had none, they were always quick to judge our children. Quick to jump in with a scolding or to scowl when a misbehaving two-year-old had to be taken outside the restaurant and allowed to walk off some of that energy. Now they are the perfect parents. Ask them. They’ll tell you.

I have many stories to prove my theory that their two boys are the spawn of the devil, but today we’ll just regale you with one such story.

First you must know the background. My DH is a farmer. He’s been a farmer his whole life – without a choice. He was drafted into military service back when there was still a draft, and before he went in he helped on his familys’ farm, and when he returned after serving his four years there was never any question that he would be helping on the farm again. It wasn’t even brought up – it was expected. He is the oldest of three children and his sister, although just a couple of years younger, was treated very differently. That’s a whole ‘nother story.

His brother, six years junior, was far enough behind in age that he really never got into the whole farm thing growing up. By the time he was old enough to help, DH was back on the scene and between him and his father they had it covered. Fast forward to about 10 years ago when FIL passed away. DH took over the farm operation and proceeded to do pretty well with it. MIL often talks about how BIL never got the chance to farm. BIL is living in la-la land. He thinks farming is coming out to work at 8:30 in the morning and leaving at 1:00 to ‘pick up the boys’. Or do this or that. There is always something. His wife is a great list maker and runs the family with an iron fist. He is a bit of a pussy and just lets her order him around. (I never have, nor will I ever make what is commonly known in these parts as a ‘Honey-Do’ list.)

BIL has two boys that are now 8 and 14. They are indescribable (is that a word?).

BIL has been pushing the oldest one toward farming since he was born. Buys him toy farm equipment at every chance, lets him do things way younger than is smart or safe. Sees our kids doing that stuff and figures if they can do it, then his kids can. He forgets his kids are 7 years younger than our youngest! Plus, our kids were raised around this stuff and taught from an early age to fear that equipment and to respect it. His kids just act like coming to the farm is going to Disneyland – without the parental supervision. You have to understand. My BIL thinks he is paying attention to what he’s doing and to his kids. He hasn’t a clue.

A couple of weeks ago the older boy called up DH and proceeded to tell him he is in FFA (Future Farmers of America to you city-folk) and they have a project to work for a farmer. DH says ‘no’, as he can’t drive, didn’t want to have to pay him, and really didn’t want him around to have to keep an eye on him when there is nothing for him to do. Wouldn’t trust him to run any equipment, etc. You get the picture.

Today. BIL was off work from his ‘real’ job and came out to help DH combine corn. The boys’ school got out at 1:00. Older boy was at home watching his little brother. He supposedly found out that BIL was in the field and got so mad that he had a hissy fit and threw a hammer through the garage door (which prompted SIL to get off work and take him out to the field where…duh…he wanted to be in the first place). He then was allowed, by BIL, to hang out until about 3:30 when BIL had to go home because “No.2 son is home by himself”. HUH? So, the way I understand it, Boy throws a temper tantrum and gets rewarded by a.)getting out of the reponsibility of watching his brother b.) getting to go to the farm just as he wanted to c.) causing Dad to leave work early to go home and do the job he was supposed to do. DH made some comment to BIL about it and was told “Boy’s in trouble now!” Ooookkkaaaayyy… if you say so.

Family. Gotta love em. I mean, you really have to. It’s written somewhere.

We’ll Get Back to You

I hate that phrase. Especially when it is coming from someone at tech support. My tech support. My internet provider.

I have spent all day in an internet-free zone. This means I cannot e-mail friends and family. I cannot blog. I cannot peruse newsworthy items or check what the weather is doing. Shut up. I don’t want to look out the window! Oh, and did I mention I can’t do my job? Arrrggghh!

So, instead of merrily tapping away on my computer I was stuck in the hell that is known as filing paperwork. Did I mention I hate paperwork? Did I perhaps mention I hate filing? Not just the act of putting paperwork into a file folder, but the necessary evil of having to a.) write on said folder and b.) write several big words onto little 1/2″ scraps of paper known as a tab or label in some type of legible way. Did I mention I hate filing?

Besides the pain it is to have to sing the alphabet song to myself several times in a minute, it is also physically a pain. All the letters of the alphabet can’t be within reach, so you have to hop to your feet (I don’t hop well anymore) to get to the letters that are just out of reach when you are sitting at the file table. Not only do you have to get up to actually file the document, but you have to check to see if there is a file already made, then, if it isn’t, you sit down once more to make this file and once again have to get up to put the freshly-made file in place. I don’t know how those file clerks do it. Oh. Yeah. They’re young and nimble. I haven’t been nimble now for at least 10 years. Let me re-think that. I was never nimble.

I hope that tech support person that was to ‘get back to me’ will get this problem figured out for tomorrow. I really don’t want to file another day.

Strange Little Girl

I was a strange little girl, and now I’m a strange woman. When I was little I did things to amuse myself whenever I could. As an only child I had a wealth of imagination that seemed to go on and on. I had a dog, a beagle, that was my best friend. I would have to walk my dog for 30 minutes a day. This seemed like a very long time to me, as a child. Now it goes by in a flash. Then I would hate walking very far and I was lucky enough to have an empty lot at the end of the block that my dog and I would explore. I found wild raspberries and mulberries on one such adventure, and would wander around trying not to get lost in the trees.

Once I found a squirrel that had recently been hit by a car. It was dead, but was either fresh enough that it was flexible, or old enough that it was flexible. At any rate, it didn’t smell bad yet and was soft and furry with no sign of violence. I kept it for a couple of days hidden in the empty lot, but eventually it became rather …uh…stinky… and became host to all those lovely critters Grissom is so fond of on CSI.

When we moved to a larger town I was blessed to find another empty lot not too far from our home. It wasn’t quite as secluded and had only one good-sized tree in the middle. I found it to be a good climbing tree and enjoyed viewing my neighborhood from its leafy branches. It was a month or so later and it became winter and I’d found some cardboard left on the lot. I managed to sneak some matches out of the house (my parents had a huge jar where they collected matchbooks from everywhere) and I would make little tinder fires under the branches of the tree inside my cardboard ‘fort’. One evening after I’d returned home I heard the sirens of a fire truck race to the end of my block and I was terrified that I hadn’t gotten my little fire put out and it had spread to engulf the neighboring houses. I swallowed my tongue trying to get enough spit into my mouth to counteract this fear, but went to bed shivering – sure in my heart that there would be a knock on the door from a detective holding the matchbook I’d left and telling my parents that my fingerprints had been found and the neighbors identified me as the strange little girl they’d seen hanging around the vacant lot.

I never did find out what happened, and never walk my dog that way again.

Connections

I started reading a blog quite by accident. I think it was a link from someone elses blog that linked from even another blog. I first found it amusing, then, as I continued to read it I found I was hooked. Partially by the fact that this person grew up in my hometown. If not my hometown, at least my state. Iowa. CW never actually tells us where in Iowa he grew up, or which state university he went to school, but in reading his blog posts I found clues. A dropped note here or there (his wife lived in the Towers), etc. I could be wrong, but if I am it’s enough of a similarity to make me believe he was from here.

It made me take another look at where I’m from. Unlike CW, who moved to several states and now appears to reside in Atlanta, Georgia, I have stayed in my little community. I lived in some tiny towns growing up, but my folks kept going back to the ‘big city’ of Des Moines. Couldn’t stay away.

I was raised a ‘town kid’. Oh, my family went camping out to the woods in the state parks – even going to Colorado and Wyoming and Kentucky. But that wasn’t my life. I enjoyed it, but I lived in the Great Suburbia. I remember when I was in high school they even came out with a book called “Suburbia”and we studied it in Humanities class. My school was really on the cutting edge even to have a class called Humanities. We studied things like the song lyrics to Simon and Garfunkel albums and why we all wear masks.

As a young divorced woman with two children, I found myself in love with and married to a wonderful man. Someday I’ll tell you that story! The point being, I now live in the country surrounded by corn and soybean fields that create our livelihood. I am on a perpetual camping trip through life. A pretty cushy one, I admit, but nonetheless it’s been pretty cool. And, I’m living in this mid-sized college town where my DH has lived his entire life and where I have made my home now for over twenty-five years. We’ve raised our children here, and two of them have actually graduated or will graduate from this university – as well as my SIL2B has graduated from there and my SIL is planning on returning to finish his degree, too.

The stories I’ve been reading of CW’s life experiences in Iowa have led me to have a different perspective on this part of the country. It’s interesting to see how someone else views “the Beast” (his term for the Iowa winter). I enjoy reading of his college escapades and drunken adventures – most of which seem to re-occur from time to time in his ‘old age’. I never made it to college as a student, but worked on the college campus for several years – actually admitting those poor confused freshmen into the life. I may have never been to one of his parties on the frat house lawn, but I’ve walked and driven past them many a warm summer night with the windows open and the music and laughter rolling out over the cars.

I find a rather strange bond with someone who has shared my town and some of my experiences. I find it heartwarming that as much as he loves his adopted city, he still seems to have good thoughts of family, friends, and memories still based here. I want to be young and share some of those experiences again. I guess I’ll just have to connect from time to time as I read his blog and try and remember my own experiences here to share.

Get Out the Tinfoil

I’m a bit odd when it comes to the full moon. DH says it’s always full, you just can’t always see it’s always full. Man-logic. Gotta love it. He teases me about wrapping tinfoil around my head (no, I don’t do that) and pretends he doesn’t notice how bright it is outside.

Yes, I did say I got blinds for the bedroom. However, I haven’t gotten them installed yet. This is a no-brainer. There is not enough hours in the day right now do add another extra thing. As it was, I didn’t get home until 8 last night!

Woke up at 3 o’clock. A.M. Thinking it was dawn, it was so bright in our bedroom! Looked at the clock and did a double-take. Lay back down and let the breeze lull me back to sleep – about 5:30. What!?!? What is that horrific noise? Oh, shit. I set the alarm clock this morning so I wouldn’t oversleep.

Off to the mine…

Earplugs Anyone?

He’s still at it. I don’t think they even took a lunch break.

I baked a bunch of cookies for my man. I vacuumed like a fiend. DD and SIL2B went hiking (no, not in our timber for obvious reasons) then went to the old house and moved the dog kennel to a better place. Would be nice if the kennel would get done at the new house, but SIL1 threw his back out last week at work and is now out of commission for awhile. <sigh> I really do want to get my dog moved soon. Oh, I played ms-fix-it, too, and fixed the drawer that’s been broken (yes, I did say new house) for a week. Screw pulled out in the back and evidently this is a task for someone with small fingers? Go figure.

Took a brief survey of the screens and windows today and determined that they aren’t doing the job. Sometime in the past week when I wasn’t around, the window in the garage that was broken when we moved in got replaced. That’s the good news. The bad news is I’m finding out the slider screens have bug-sized gaps in them, as well as some of the actual window screens. Somewhere the bugs are able to get in between the screen and the window. When the window is shut, this isn’t a critical issue – but, now it’s cooled off and I want to shut off the a.c. and open up the windows and voila! there are bugs inside the screens. Somehow they got there, and somehow they shouldn’t be able to. I mean, what is a screen for, right?? Guess I’m going to have to make a nasty phone call to the contractor and try and figure out what’s going on. I’m dreading that.

Made spaghetti for supper, but I wasn’t hungry and DD is on the low-carb diet, so no pasta for her. DH and SIL2B enjoyed, however.

Hope the jackass next door gets a really sore arm.