Tag Archives: happy

And How Are YOU Doing?

No, really, how are you?  Feeling good?  Family okay?  Weather inoffensive?  Food reliably obtained?  Good.  Enough about you, my turn!


LOVING MY NEW GIG.  Here’s my summary in a neat little pro-con list:


  1.  I don’t have to issue stupid “bathroom passes” and keep track of them and wonder just how many unsavory germs have been transferred to me.
  2. I make ONE lesson plan and teach it three different times.  For moneys.
  3. These young adults get my jokes.  I can throw out a bit of humor, a bit of snark, and I don’t have any Mom-of-Snowflayke calling me and yelling at me in front of the principal that I hurt somebody’s fragile ego.
  4. I’m only there for an hour and a half.
  5. I’m not hobbling together equipment or, worse, buying my own sound system and CDs so that a decent sound is experienced.
  6. Powerpoint is my BFF.
  7. No faculty meetings!
  8. No lunch duty!
  9. Actually being trusted to come up with the course content and the style of teaching and the examples I choose and.. and.. and… forget it, that’s everything right there.


  1.  I’m an adjunct, so no office.  But that’s okay because I can just go hang out with a student at the lounge and pretend I’m holding office hours.  Still get the job done and there’s tea and snacks nearby.
  2. I’m an adjunct, so no benefits.  That part is not okay because I’d really like some decent benefits, but in exchange for that, my college contributes 3% above my contribution to my pension.  THIS ROCKS.
  3. Sorry, I forgot this was the con list.  Pretend I struck out that last part.
  4. Um…..

No, that’s pretty much it.  Just those two things are the downside.  Oh!  I thought of another PRO: it is literally (please read that in Chris Traeger’s voice, thanks) five miles from my house.  Not 5.3, not “about” five, an actual five miles.  That tickles me.



Too true.


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Been doing a lot of stuff lately.  Mostly this:


(All taken with my iPhone.  No filters, no color correction or enhancements.  I know, right?)


And I made this for you:


(Again, with my iPhone, but this is terrible.  Maybe I should have taken this outside and flung it in the air to get a good shot.)


I’m outside every day with Nellie and it’s giving me plenty of time to reflect, and considering the escalation of terrible events lately, I want to appreciate simple beauty right in my back yard.  I am so thankful I have what I have, and I’m grateful for opportunities to give, and I wish my American readers a Thanksgiving of simplicity and contentment.


Back soon, and maybe there’ll be some sarcasm.

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Well, All it Took Was Food

It’s amazing to me how the brain works and how it affects the rest of the body, including the emotions.  It’s been a bit of a wobbly week and that neighborhood didn’t feel right to me.  I was lucky enough to make plans with a friend to meet for a glass of wine, and after spilling out tons of words and feelings and thoughts and “I know, right?” and a plate of perfectly seasoned and crispy sweet potato crinkle-cut fries, I was feeling a whole lot better about Things.

Yesterday we went fishing, and brought our cooler of sandwiches, fruit, pretzels, water, and seltzer, but I never took a bite: too seasick!  I haven’t been seasick since I was eight years old, so this was quite the “whoa” neighborhood.  Interestingly, there was no nausea and no chumming for the fishies; it was full-body trembling, dizzy, and an inability to stand (which is already challenging on a boat).  So I ended up napping and all the food was brought home untasted.  But as a sign of true love, Hubby made pancakes for dinner, half plain and half blueberry and it was the perfect “bring me back to the normal neighborhood” prescription.

This morning I met my breakfast buddy at our usual place, and had my bacon, tomato, and cheddar omelet with rye toast and many cups of hot tea.  More spilling of words, more sharing and laughing and planning and commiserating and by the time it was all over, I had a restored spring in my step and a happy outlook.  Once again, my neighborhood had come back and all it took was food.

I’ve been reading a couple of blogs and I’m wondering what makes me want to read ALL the archives of some, and barely want to skim others, and I think it’s because of the tone.  If it’s funny or upbeat I think I’ve found a new friend, somebody I want to be around often.  If it’s constantly a complaining place, I don’t want to stick around.  The ones who share something personal that bring up remembrances of my own feelings make me want to learn how others think.  How do other brains process the feelings I can’t?  How do others stay so happy all the time in the midst of strife?  Where does that talent for stringing words together come from?  How can I be more like them and less like me?

And today I answered myself: There’s already a them.  Just be a you.  Maybe throw some food in, too.





Come to mama.

Come to mama.


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I’m Giddy and I’m Up and You Know What That Equals!

(If you don’t, then why are you here still reading?)


Younger Daughter is coming home today for Spring Break.  I’m very very happy about this even though it makes me a really mean mom.  I didn’t want her going South for Spring Break.  Not because I’d be afraid that she’d end up on “Girls Gone Wild” or anything like that.  No, she actually wanted to be in New Orleans helping out in Katrina-affected areas like the altruistic little soul she is.  But Mean Mom didn’t like the thought of her driving 1700 miles straight through and having strangers (and by strangers I mean not carried on my insurance) drive her car and possibly driving a car she’s unfamiliar with as she’s still a relatively new driver especially since this wasn’t a group sanctioned by the college and there’s no liability happening and…..yeah, I’m Mean.  But I learned a long time ago that Moms get to play the “gut” card and if it doesn’t feel right to you, you tell your children upfront and hope and pray that they understand this is a Very. Big. Deal.  Lucky for me, Younger Daughter is an understanding soul, as well.  She will get her altruistic fill right here in Jersey helping in Sandy-affected areas, as well as being spoiled for a week.


I’m also helping Older Daughter to buy a car, and it’s from a really really nice man who sold Younger Daughter her car.  It’s such a nice change from an anonymous dealership and I think I will buy all cars from him going forward.  The test drive is today and we’re both giggling a lot over it.  Then we’ll have a week of jockeying four cars in our itty bitty driveway but I don’t care because that means everybody is home and I love it.  We’ll see movies, we’ll cook, we’ll bake something really unhealthy, we’ll probably hit some Dr. Who reruns, and then we’ll play Cinderella.


For reals!  We’re actually going to a Charity Ball and we have to get very dressed up and made up and hairdo-ed up (totally just invented that word, I’m getting it trademarked.  Wish I knew how to do that little TM thing on my computer.  Don’t steal it, ‘kay?) and then figure out how not to get all messed up with seatbelts while we drive for an hour to get there.  Then we’ll be feasting and dancing all night and this band they have is AMAZING and I just love the thought that once a year I can say I’m going to a Charity Ball and it really is everything I think it’s going to be.  Which, as we all know, totally means sweatpants the following day.

But this weekend, we’ll have nothing on the agenda except Daylight Savings Time which, really, why do we still have it?  Does it really do anyone any good at all?  Who’s good with losing an hour of sleep and showing up disheveled everywhere?  Doesn’t “disheveled” look like it needs two “n”s in it?  Spellcheck says I’m wrong.  Does Spellcheck know anything about Daylight Savings Time?  Hmmmm?????  Take that, Sassy Spellcheck.

Yep, I’m giddy.  

For your thinking and head-tilting pleasure:


And they kept it. How very ool.

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On the Season…

I’m amused by the amount and content of the catalogs I get at this time of year.

For example, a catalog that would like to equip my bedroom, and my bathroom, and apparently other rooms beyond that is showcasing a myriad of products to make my Thanksgiving guests feel right at home.  Don’t we all have that spare bedroom that just cries to be turned into a guest room, complete with scented candles, colorful bed linens, massive amounts of pillows, luxurious curtains, a clever nightstand, and a footbath?  Nothing says welcome like “put your stinky feet into a tub of water and splash about on my new coordinated rug.”  It is to chuckle.

A baking catalog fit for royalty urges me to “make a gift of it” by purchasing their accouterments to make the packaging even better than the treat I’m baking.  I can buy ribbon for $1/foot that will probably fit around three cookies.  I can buy brown paper tags with string for $10 when I can make my own for free out of shopping bags.  Or there’s the red and white baker’s twine that can make my slaved-over treats look just like they came from the local bakery, which kind of defeats the purpose of me doing all this home baking for Yuletide.

I can choose to ship out food to those far away from me from a colony that reminds me of cheese.  Yes, they sell cheese, too.  They boast on the cover of their catalog that there’s over 90 great gifts UNDER $20!  I can get Beef Logs (that sounds dreadfully unappetizing); tiny jars of mustards and preserves that don’t look big enough to fit a spoon or knife into; and (here I quote) (look, here come the quote marks) “delectable Bonbons; delicious Cakes; Petits Fours…”  (wow, do I know how to use quote marks or what?).  Correct me if I’m wrong, please…aren’t bonbons the French word for candy?  Why not just say candy?  And are petit fours simply tiny cakes?  So we’re getting cakes and tiny cakes along with our Logs of Beef?  (Nope, no better that way, either.)  How long have these edible items been sitting in a warehouse, ready to be packed into those segmented boxes?  What hellish preservatives must be used to keep them stable?  I think I’ll pass, thanks.

There’s the enticements from the end of the land and the beans, and while I like a lot of their clothes, they apparently don’t like people who are not spending the majority of their time outdoors on various slopes and hills and valleys, ruggedly skiing or skating or chopping wood, because the plus-sized selection is dismal and we’re a plus-sized family around here.  The only thing that would fit me is their tote bags, and I have several of them that regularly get stolen by my children.  Sorry! I meant borrowed, of course.

I am studiously ignoring the all-in-one catalogs, that promise to deliver in time for the holidays any assortment of “stuff” from ice-picks covered in faux-sheep to chocolate-flavored pretzel treats (and I can’t help thinking that anything labeled as a treat is really meant for the family pet) to canning jars (“Merry Christmas! Now get in the kitchen and preserve me something!) and a flannel nightgown equipped with its own Swiss Army knife.  (Makes me wonder what the Swiss Navy does for knives.)

Well, I’m not having a household full of people for Thanksgiving; it will be very small, everyone has a bedroom with their own linens, nobody is jonesing for a footbath or a beef log, just the normal meal with the usual football games playing in the background and lots of satisfied smiles.

And hopefully, a minimum of news coverage of Black Friday crowds.  Because that would mean indigestion.


This is what I want to see next Thursday.

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Facing the Monster

It was a very bad time for me last Spring.  It is now almost Fall, and I am so much better and in a strange way, grateful.  Today I took a final step and revisited the scene of the crime.  Granted, I only went to the parking lot and only saw three of my former colleagues, but I went to the physical location without having an emotional upheaval.  As I sat in the parking lot waiting for my friend to meet me, I was watching the students come out of the building.  (Oh my gosh, creeper much?)  I was wearing sunglasses and my hair has gotten really long, and nobody really bothered to look into my car so I was pretty much anonymous.  And instead of seeing former students and missing them and crying, I was seeing the students that were the trouble-makers and the difficult ones and actually being glad that I wasn’t doing this any more.

I realized that I cared for my students way more than they cared for me, which is exactly how it should be, but it was the final “whew” that let me realize I’m in the right place right now, and it is all going to be okay.  

Which means it took me only one hundred and fourteen days to lose it all and slowly climb back.

And I’m back.


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