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Saturday, February 28, 2009

Not sure I'll be adding that to my list of things to try

So in typical Texas fashion, the temperature yesterday- in February, mind you- made it up to 80 degrees. And of course, also in typical Texas fashion, today it is now 30 degrees cooler than it was yesterday, but that's not the point. Because the weather was warming up and the sun was staying out, Chill Out, our favorite local snow cone spot, decided it was time to open up shop.

Now you should know something about my husband- he is addicted to snow cones. As in, I think he would probably prefer to eat one for breakfast, lunch, and dinner during the year's warmer months rather than eat normal meals. And don't get me wrong, I enjoy a good vanilla/cherry snow cone every now and again, but I can't handle them with quite the same frequency that he can.

Well as we were returning from our afternoon o' errands yesterday, we just so happened to pass by Chill Out and I suggested, because I am a loving and gracious wife, that we stop by and have our first snow cone of 2009. So we did just that. And while perusing the menu, we noticed something a tad unusual. Take a look and let me know if you can figure out what struck us as a little abnormal:

Did you figure it out yet? I'll give you a hint- it's a flavor that has been added on in marker.

In case you are blind, you might not have noticed it, but there is definitely a flavor on there called "Thug Passion." I have so many questions. WHO orders a Thug Passion snow cone? And what flavors are involved in this snow cone- blood, dirt, and bullets? And how was this particular flavor in such high demand that it warranted being added on to the existing menu?

And this, my friends, is why I love Richmond, Texas.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Newsflash

Listen up, readers. Our size-small Dairy Queen Blizzards last night cost 60 cents less than they normally do. All I’m saying is that if this is the effect of a crumbling economy, then I am ok with the crumbling economy. Is that selfish?

OK WHOA AND AN EVEN BIGGER NEWSFLASH: I was just talking to two of my co-workers and fidgeting with my badge as I normally do. So as I was pulling it around on its string, I decided to bite down on it with my teeth. Why? I have no idea. But all I know is that I instantly became aware that just 2 short weeks ago that thing was in a public toilet. Sick. Sick. Sick.

And anyway, Brian and I have a pretty low-key weekend ahead of us, and so obviously I didn’t find it necessary to shower this morning. I just didn’t see the point in going to the effort of washing and drying my hair when the highlight of my day will likely be washing the dogs, getting Brian’s car inspected, or a trip to HEB. Yes, you read that right—HEB and not Wal-mart. We decided that we can only expose ourselves to so much Wal-mart filth before it begins to endanger our health, so we are taking a break this week. Instead we will be trekking it an extra 10 minutes to a grocery store that actually includes twisty ties for the produce bags. And one where you don’t leave feeling like you need to take a bath in rubbing alcohol to make yourself clean once again. Which is perfect considering my previously determined decision not to shower today!

Tonight will probably be a romantic evening consisting of eating leftovers and watching our latest Netflix movie, which is actually how probably 90% of all other married couples will also be spending their Friday evening, so I don’t feel too bad about the lack of excitement. Tomorrow we will be having lunch with some friends and then taking Brian’s parents out to dinner at Pappasito’s. I can assure you that mass quantities of chips will be consumed, and my pants will not likely fit the same when I’m done, but I’m ok with that.

I’m sorry that I didn’t have much to say about The Biggest Loser this week, by the way. I think we can all agree upon the following: Bob was being a tad overdramatic, Tara (or Tah-ra, if you ask Jillian) is most definitely on steroids, and Ron, though very desperately in need of ridding himself of his 3 stomachs, needs to get the boot ASAP. And as long as we’re talking about reality TV, let me just tell you that if I never have to see Megan Corkrey’s hip-shaking dance again on American Idol, it will be too soon. Seriously, so irritating.

Ok that’s all for now. I’m hoping tomorrow’s lunch (possibly a picnic?) with our friends will give me something townie to discuss. I’ll keep you posted. Have a good weekend!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Happy Buster-versary!

Yes, that’s right. It has been exactly one year since we first brought that poor little dumpster doggie home with us. So that means it’s been exactly one year since we have been clinically insane. True though this may be, we have loved having Buster as part of the family and wouldn’t trade our time with him for anything. And that’s a fact.

Just a quick trip down memory lane with/a few of my favorite things about Buster: the time he stayed put in the backyard when Noah broke free and ran away for a night, the time he played tug-of-war with Noah over the dead squirrel, the time(s) he barfed in the backseat of Brian’s truck, all of his incessant licking, and his constant need for attention.

On the Girl Scout cookie front, I am proud to report that we have one box down and three to go. Thanks to my addiction to peanut butter, the Peanut Butter Patties (aka: Tag-alongs) were polished off this morning when I packed 2 of the 3 remaining cookies in my lunch, and gave the 3rd to Brian as a breakfast appetizer. Normally, we would only have the Thin Mints and Samoas left, but some very gracious friends bestowed a box of Do-si-do’s (peanut butter sandwiches) on us, so now we are left with 3 boxes to consume. I’m not sure why the media is spending so much time talking about wars and our crumbling economy when CLEARLY I have a cookie-consumption issue going on. Tough life.

Brian’s youth group is holding its annual Pancake Dinner tonight and I’m pretty pumped about that. I think it might technically be called a Pancake Supper, but I refuse to use the word “supper” unless quoting Leave it to Beaver or Little House on the Prairie. Brian will once again be participating in the pancake-eating contest, and seeing that his biggest competition currently consists of a handful of first and second graders, I have a feeling he might pull off another win. I know you’ll be on the edge of your seats waiting for the results, so I’ll be sure to fill you in.

And for those of you who were wondering about my daddy-o, he is scheduled to check out of the hospital today and come back home, so that is good news! Basically he had a bunch of things going on with his colon that I’m fairly certain you are not interested in hearing about, but just know that he will be a-ok.

And lastly, I realized recently that I have very much been neglecting townie updates. We seem to have somehow acquired lives in the last several months, therefore taking away from the time we once had to pursue our townie quest. However, I pledge here and now to make townie-hood more of a priority, both in our lives, and in this blog. I will say that Allison and I took a little trip to Seaborne Park in Rosenberg for our morning walk on Saturday. This is the same park where Brian and I once encountered a feral pig, but sadly, Allison and I made no wild animal sightings.

And at long last, here is the latest townie fun fact:

The average travel time to work for workers age 16+ in Fort Bend County is 32.3 minutes (as of 2007). That means that those of us living and working in Fort Bend County spend an average of 62.6 minutes in the car every day… which means that in a year (50 work weeks), the average person in Fort Bend County spends 15,650 minutes (or 260+) hours in the car.

If you are my extremely fortunate husband, however, you spend approximately 2000 minutes (or 33 hours) walking to work each year. Must be nice, huh?

Sunday, February 22, 2009

My two favorite men

It has been an eventful weekend for both of my favorite men, so I wanted to make sure and give them both a shout out:

Brian did an amazing job at church today! His sermon was, in my unbiased opinion, excellently delivered :) In case you were curious, his message was about the call we all have to evangelize and spread God's word. He made me very proud.
My poor dad has spent the weekend in a hospital outside of Jacksonville, FL (Angela, maybe you should go visit him!). He is ok, but is possibly having issues with an ulcer or something else related. Apparently the tendency to suffer from unusual stomach-related ailments during business trips runs in our family. Hopefully he will know more about what is causing the problem when he gets checked out tomorrow, and hopefully they will release him so that he can come back home! Prayers are appreciated :o)

Otherwise, we had another fun weekend with the Olivers, but I have decided that they need to move here so that we can see them for more than just 48 hours at a time. We started off the weekend on Friday with dessert and games with 2 of our other favorite couples- the Scibas and the Trapps. I may or may not have eaten my weight in chocolate. We also played a few rounds of Cranium, but being the hip, young newlyweds that we all are, we called it a night around 10:30 pm because everyone was struggling to stay awake. Pathetic? Perhaps. I blame the whole having a job thing.

I don't really remember much of what we did on Saturday that didn't involve food, but I'm certain there were a few other filler activities. Allison and I went on a walk and did some shopping while the boys stayed home losing brain cells, er, I mean playing a video game and babysitting the dogs. We ended the evening with dinner at El Tiempo with 2 friends, dessert at Swirll (against our better judgment), and a practice-round of Brian's sermon.

They abandoned us after church and a subsequent lunch with my grandparents, therefore forcing us to get back to reality. Now I am enjoying a typical Sunday evening watching Lifetime movies and blog-stalking while Brian is at youth group. And I'm not so secretly pretending that I don't have to wake up at 5:15 tomorrow morning and start the work week all over again. Anyone else participating in this?

Ok kids, time to get back to watching Jessie Spano (aka: Elizabeth Berkley) on Lifetime. And no, I am not watching Showgirls. Happy 2/22 to you!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

I'm considering gaining 200 pounds just to be included

Watch out, because The Biggest Loser is coming to Houston for auditions in a couple of weeks. First of all, can you really call it an audition? What kind of talents and skills do you have to display during such an audition where the main basis for being on the show is being morbidly obese? I guess they find some obese people to be more entertaining for tv purposes than others.

However, I will say that I’m glad they hold “auditions” rather than asking people to nominate their friends for the show. Because if people take offense to being nominated for What Not to Wear, then I have a feeling people really wouldn't appreciate being nominated for TBL. Maybe they should allow anonymous nominations? I’ll make sure to write to the producers and suggest that.

We are experiencing some rare, beautiful weather here in the Houston area today. In order to fully enjoy this weather, I am staring longingly out of my cubicle window and stuffing my face with dark chocolate peanut M&Ms. Nothing gets you ready for swimsuit weather quite like these 2 activities when performed at the same time, let me tell you. The good news is that the only people (other than Brian) that see me in a swimsuit are the random passers-by that happen to cruise through the alley behind our house during one of my tanning sessions in the bed of Brian’s truck. Classy, I know.

On an unrelated but far more important note, the Olivers are coming in town to see us this weekend! We are always excited to have them visit because it means we have someone to go shopping with me and someone to sit around watching tv/playing video games with Brian. PLUS they are bringing Rocky, so Noah and Buster will be pumped to have another partner in crime to romp around with. However, last time he visited, “romping” consisted mainly of Buster and Noah pouncing on the little guy while he hovered, terrified, in the corner of the yard under some bushes. Our pups are loveable, but certainly not the sharpest tools in the shed.

Anyway, the main reason they are coming to visit is because Brian is going to be giving the sermon at church on Sunday! We are really excited about this, and although I am debatably more nervous than he is, I know he is going to do a great job. So here is where I officially request your prayers for Brian as he prepares for his talk… and prayers for me to stop bothering him about it. He loves me, I promise! :)

Other activities for the weekend will include eating, shopping, walking, and undoubtedly a few rounds of Guitar Hero in between. Now doesn’t that make you want to come visit? We have an extra bedroom, by the way, and if you ignore the fact that a roach has been spotted in the guest bed on not one but TWO separate occasions, then I'd say our house is a pretty ideal place to visit :)

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Jillian, I have a feeling your whole family's going down

Does it give anyone else a nervous tick when Jillian refers to Tara as “Tah-ra”? For the love, Jillian, that is NOT her name. Everyone else on the show seems to grasp the proper pronunciation, so why can’t you?

Please pardon my rage toward Jillian today. I would like to pretend it’s just my normal over-involvement in the latest episode of The Biggest Loser, but to be honest, other than mispronouncing one of her team member’s names, she didn’t really do anything to make me mad on last night’s episode.

She did, however, participate very fully in demoralizing me this morning. You see, I recently purchased Jillian’s workout DVD, The 30-day Shred. Because I am already an owner/fan of The Biggest Loser Cardio DVD, I thought I would also enjoy this one. And if you consider sweating profusely and wanting to die about 5 minutes into a workout to be enjoyable, then yes, I enjoyed it thoroughly.

The thing is, on the cardio DVD (which has workouts with Jillian, Bob, and some dumb blonde trainer named Kim), the participants in the video are actual contestants from the show. They are overweight and terribly uncoordinated. Translation: they make me feel really in-shape and awesome.

In contrast, on Jillian’s Shred video, her two “helpers” (aka: demons) are thin, toned and very much coordinated, leaving me feeling much like I did when I once attempted a step aerobics class at the Rec in college—disabled and out of shape.

That’s ok, though. I will rise above, and before too long, Natalie and whatever that other stick figure’s name was will be jealous of my mad skills. First, I just have to get to the point where I can complete the 30-second circuit of push-ups without having to drop to my knees. And it probably wouldn’t hurt if I actually got a set of hand weights to use instead of lifting imaginary ones… wish me luck!

Monday, February 16, 2009

I wouldn't mind spending every weekend like this


After the hand-in-the-toilet incident at work on Friday, I was ready to wipe the slate clean and start the weekend over. Fortunately for me, Brian anticipated that I might want a little extra attention and pampering over the Valentine’s Day weekend (HOW on earth did he know this? I don’t think I ever hinted or alluded to it…:o). So instead of coming home to a Friday afternoon full of cleaning, grocery-shopping, and other errand-running, I was greeted with flowers, a balloon (in Spanish, no less!), and candy. And did I mention candy? All I’m saying is that apparently Brian (a) wants to be married to a contestant on The Biggest Loser and (b) is completely unaware of my lack of self-control when it comes to Reese’s Peanut Butter cups. Regardless, I’m not complaining!
We spent the afternoon/evening seeing Slumdog Millionaire (good movie), eating dinner out, doing some Friday-night grocery shopping at the nicer of the two Wal-marts that we frequent, and playing a little Mario Kart. Oh, and at some point during the day we managed to buy a pair of khaki pants for Brian at Old Navy for less than $4… not sure how that happened, but again, not complaining!

As I mentioned before, Saturday’s plans were kept a surprise from me. The only part I played in the day (besides participating in his planned activities) was feeding the dogs for Brian and making him breakfast in bed. Oh, and I gave him a present—a gift certificate to get a “hot shave” from the Vintage Shave place in Sugar Land Town Square. I don’t really know how that all works, but from what I can tell, it is sort of like the male equivalent of a pedicure, so thankfully he was excited about it.

I don’t want to ramble on about what a great husband I have (I do) and about how wonderful the day was (it was), but I do want to make sure and give credit where it was due, so I’ll give you a quick re-cap:

- The first surprise was that Brian gave me The Fray’s latest album—it is great and I have had it on repeat ever since. #7 (“Enough for Now”) is my favorite—I highly recommend that you get the CD!

- The next surprise was that we were going to spend the afternoon at the Galleria where I could pick out a dress to buy for the evening. I’ll include a picture below so you can see which one I picked. I have always thought it would be fun to do something like that, and it was!

- Before we left for our shopping trip, he told me to pack a bag for the night. So after the Galleria, we checked into the Omni Hotel in Houston (on Woodway). Minus the fact that they gave us a room with 2 double beds (instead of a king), the hotel was great!

- Dinner was also a surprise—we ate a restaurant called Benjy’s in Rice Village… self-described as “modern American.” I’ll admit I was a little weary at first when reading the pre-set menu, but I ate my words (and my food) and ended up really enjoying it. ** We decided to get our dessert to go because I was about to explode from food consumption, and I think that was probably a good call.


- Last, but certainly not least, on Sunday morning when we returned home, he told me to close my eyes and he put something on my head. I opened my eyes to see that I was wearing Micky Mouse ears (Minnie Mouse, actually), and he told me that my final surprise was that he wanted to take me to Disney World for our upcoming (in several months) 2nd anniversary! We haven’t planned the trip yet, but I am excited nonetheless. Anyone with Disney World tips, please send them my way!

So yes, it’s safe to say he went a little over the top. And it’s also safe to say that I didn’t mind one bit :o) Thank you, Brian, for being the greatest and most thoughtful Valentine ever!

**And here is where I hang my head in shame: I have to admit to you all that upon reading the menu at Benjy’s, I behaved like a total and complete brat. I am not exactly an adventurous eater (I consider black beans, spinach, and cottage cheese to be exotic foods), so reading about un-optional endives, kalamata olives, and pureed carrots on the menu sent me into a little bit of a picky-eater-induced-rage. I will admit here and now that I was not very nice to Brian about it, and I will also admit here and now that I was very much in the wrong and am officially a big huge jerk for making him feel bad, especially before giving the food a chance! So to my wonderful husband, I am very sorry!

And there you have it, an official apology over the world wide web…. for those of you who know me well, you know that apologies don’t come easily. And especially not publicly, so consider this a major accomplishment for me :o)

Hope you all had a wonderful Valentine’s Day weekend as well, and I hope that the rest of you who also have today off are enjoying it by doing ABSOLUTELY NOTHING!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

I don’t blame you if you never want to shake my hand again

I know I should have written about this sooner, but the Valentine’s Day weekend’s festivities distracted me, so forgive me for the delay.

Let me just be brief with you: when I was at work on Friday, my badge accidentally fell into the toilet (was “accidentally” really even necessary there?). And when faced with the possibility of having to pay $10 to replace that pesky badge, I did the unthinkable—I reached my hand into that VERY public toilet and rescued my badge from a burial at sea. To answer your question, NO, I had not used the toilet yet. But I think you'll agree that that doesn’t make it any less disgusting.

After calming my gag reflex and exclaiming “SICK! SICK! SICK!” over and over again, I exited the stall, went to the sink, and spent a good 10 minutes sterilizing my hand and my badge with soap and the hottest water that I could tolerate. They both may be clean, but they will never, ever be the same again.

Let me just say that I have seen the “clientele” that use that restroom, and I have on more than one occasion skipped over that exact stall because of its filth factor. And now I have to continue life knowing that I stuck my hand inside that toilet. My right hand at that. Vomit.

What I found most amusing was that, upon returning to my office and sharing the story with my horrified female co-workers, someone asked me, “Well did you wash it off?!” Nope, I decided to lick it clean. YES I washed it off, but that doesn’t mean the memory won’t scar me for many potty-trips to come.

And worst of all, when I was telling the story and revealed that my main motivation in fishing it out was to avoid paying for a replacement badge, I was informed that they don’t, in fact, charge for the replacement badge. Awesome.

Hope your Friday the 13th was a little less scary!

And have no fear, a Valentine’s Day re-cap will be coming your way shortly!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

All about the Benjamins, baby

So as you might have noticed on my facebook status, I was really feeling the need to blog today, but struggling to come up with a topic. And while not having a set topic in mind has never stopped me before, today I was just feeling too lazy to overcome the blog-block.

So I declared this publicly on facebook and asked for a suggested topic. Thankfully, my great pal and fellow blogging friend, Chrissy, came through with a topic, so be sure to thank her... unless you don't like the topic, in which case, feel free to blame her :o)

Chrissy wanted me to share how I would spend an extra $100 today if given the chance. (And for you fellow Real Simple readers, you might recognize this question from the magazine.) So here goes:

$9 on a pack of bones for Noah and Buster
$18 on a pair of Hanky Pankies (don’t judge me, they’re the greatest underwear ever)
$25 on a pedicure
$20 on a tank of gas to go to/from Austin to see my family
$6 on Dairy Queen Blizzards for me and Brian
The remaining $22 towards dinner at El Tiempo!

So there you have it. How would YOU spend an extra $100? And don’t say “rent” or anything else obligatory, because that’s boring :)

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Wednesday afternoon ramblings

So guess who came across my path again this morning… ok who am I kidding, you will never guess. It is highly unlikely that any of you actually remember this post, but the very same woman with the Chevy Cavalier—pink stuffed animals in tow—happened to be in front of me during part of my morning drive! What a treat! I should point out that I noticed something about her bumper sticker that I didn’t notice before… it actually said “git-‘er-dun” instead of “git-‘er-done.” It’s an important distinction to point out, because if you are going to slaughter the first two words in the phrase, you might as well go for all three. Regardless, it was nice to see a familiar face on the road this morning.

And speaking of faces (impressive segue right there), someone sent me a picture of Rihanna’s post-Chris-Brown-asault face today. I tried to find it online but didn’t have any luck, but she does indeed look pretty beaten up! I also heard a rumor that he bit her, and my question is this—did they get into a fight, or did he develop a case of rabies? Seriously, who bites people after the age of 5? I am admittedly having trouble jamming out to “With You” or “No Air” now without feeling like I am supporting an abusive thug… and abusive thug with a potential case of rabies at that.

On a more positive note, last night’s episode of The Biggest Loser was much more enjoyable without Joelle’s presence. I will say, however, that I am a little tired of Tara. She started out being my favorite, but now I think she has gotten a little bit cocky. And I think that her uncontrollable sobbing in reaction to Blaine or Dane leaving was a tad on the melodramatic side. But if someone made me work out for several hours a day and deprived me of DQ blizzards and other vital necessities for weeks at a time, I would probably be a little emotional as well.

You might also be interested to know that I got a new pair of glasses today. I am fairly certain that they are almost identical to the pair I got freshman year of college, which says a lot about how much I have matured in my taste since then. My old pair’s prescription was apparently really outdated (no, it’s not the same pair from freshman year), and the eye doctor seemed fairly amazed (read: troubled and disturbed) that I had been operating a motor vehicle at night while wearing them on a semi-regular basis. Oops.

And that’s all I’ve got for today. Meanwhile, I’m going to get back to trying to figure out what surprise Brian has in store for me for Valentine’s Day. He told me I’m not allowed to look at his bank account between now and then (me? snooping? no way!), so do I have any volunteers to go look for me? :)

Monday, February 9, 2009

It's cookie time, it's cookie time!

Yes, my friends, it’s that time of year again: the Girl Scouts are out in full force. I was never actually a Girl Scout, and considering my love for Girl Scout cookies, I think that was probably a good thing. Because nothing is cute and loveable about a morbidly obese youngster knocking on your door trying to sell you cookies while simultaneously stuffing said cookies in her face. But maybe that’s just me.

Regardless, I bought 3 boxes and plan to eat them all in one sitting. I’m kidding, I’m kidding… I will stretch it out at least over a week-long period. Fortunately I have a cookie-loving husband who will assist me in my eating endeavors. I know you are dying to know which kinds we ordered, so here’s the moment you’ve all been waiting for: Thin Mints, Peanut Butter Patties (aka: tiny pieces of Heaven), and Caramel DeLites (dumbest name ever). I’m picking them up tomorrow, so please start praying now that I will exercise some self-control so that the cookies will survive at least until I get home from work.

And by the way, do Girl Scout cookies make anyone else want to watch Troop Beverly Hills? "Patches? We don't need no stinking patches!" Good thing I own it.

In other news, I had a really good time watching the E! True Hollywood Story about Mario Lopez this weekend. I know, my life is fascinating. Brian was out of town (yes, again!), so really the whole weekend was a blur of hours of random tv-watching with some intermittent social interaction outside the house. I did manage to escape on Friday night to meet some of my Bible Study friends for dinner at Gringo’s (let’s be honest, I never say no to Mexican food), and on Saturday afternoon to meet my friend, Sara, for coffee. And by coffee, I mean that she had coffee, while I sucked down (that wasn't very lady-like) a vanilla frap, which is essentially a milkshake. And now that I’m done re-capping my oh-so-exciting weekend, let’s move on.

I am really pumped about Valentine’s Day this weekend because I love any holiday that deems it appropriate for Brian to give me lots of attention and/or flowers and candy. I will settle for any of the above. And our plans for the evening are actually a surprise, so that’s kind of fun. Unless the surprise somehow ends with dinner at Captain D’s Sea Food (sick out) or a scavenger hunt throughout the local Fiesta. So Brian, if you’re reading, make sure and cross both of those activities off of your potential surprise activity list. (I know, I know—he is SO lucky to have such a helpful and straightforward wife!)

I am not above admitting that I may or may not have spent a portion of Valentine's Day last year crying in our bathroom because Brian forgot to make the bed and did not remember to make the cd I had requested as a gift. Irrational? Perhaps. I like to call it "endearing." :)

In addition to Valentine’s Day, this weekend also happens to be a 3-day weekend, as my company is very graciously giving us a holiday for President’s Day. Thank you, Presidents, for existing. In your honor, I plan to sleep late and not change out of my work-out clothes until it’s time for bed. I don’t think Brian has the day off, so I will be celebrating in solitude... but considering the nature of my aforementioned plans, I don't think he will be too bummed about missing out on the festivities.

And lastly, on an entirely unrelated note, who thinks it’s about time that my sister sends me a sample of some of her cupcakes? I think it’s the least she could to repay me for spending 9 grueling months in the womb with her, don’t you?

Oh, and for those of you that were wondering about the outcome of my last post, don't worry- the gas pains are gone... the humiliation is not.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

How to ruin dinner with your co-workers

Alternate post title: Umm, that was embarrassing.

Interested in ruining a perfectly good dinner with your co-workers while out of town on a business trip? Here’s how:

Step 1: Come down with an unusual and intense stomach pain during dinner. Get a little light headed, a little nauseous, and develop dry mouth.

Step 2: Inform your co-workers that you aren’t feeling so great, and then start crying and apologizing profusely.

Step 3: Have one of your co-workers stuff the remains of dinner in his face, and then walk you down to the nearest Walgreens. Meanwhile, have the other co-worker scarf down her food and get the check.

Step 4: Cry some more on the way to the Walgreens, all the while promising your co-worker that you don't normally do this kind of thing, and then stumble into the store, making sure to look disoriented and stop occasionally to double over in pain.

Pause: Make SURE that all of this is happening in the French Quarter in New Orleans, literally steps away from Bourbon Street.

Step 5: While one co-worker is trying to find the best medicine, and the other is standing by to make sure you don’t pass out, crouch for a bit on the floor, and then LIE DOWN on the floor of Walgreens.

Step 6: Cry some more, and agree with your co-workers that yes, maybe you do need to go to the doctor.

Step 7: Stumble outside with them while they hail a cab.

Step 8: Climb into a PUBLIC CAB IN NEW ORLEANS and lie down in the back seat on the way to the nearest hospital.

Step 9: Have your co-worker call your husband to inform him that you are not feeling well and you’re on the way to the ER, but not to worry because you’ll call him back in a bit.

Step 10: Moments before arriving at the hospital, realize that the pain has finally (thank the good Lord) gone away.

Step 11: Admit this with as much apologizing and embarrassment as possible to your co-workers, and proceed to hail a cab to head back to the hotel.

Step 12: Try not to die of embarrassment in the cab ride home when you come to realize that, most likely, you have just suffered from the world’s most severe gas pains.

Yes. This actually happened. To me. Tonight. Thank you, Megan and Nick, for taking care of me. And again, I’m sorry for ruining dinner :o)

Monday, February 2, 2009

How would you define exhaustion?

Because I’m pretty sure I would define it as this: spending a weekend locked in a house with 30 high school seniors, and enough junk food to feed the entire cast of The Biggest Loser. Because seriously, I am struggling to stay awake today, and that’s with the 24 hours of time I have already had to recover.

We went back to Austin this weekend to participate as leaders for my home church’s youth retreat called Focus. Back when I was an intern there (greatest job ever), my contact group was the 9th grade girls. Fast forward a few years to now - I am now well beyond my intern days, and they are all 3 months away from high school graduation. So obviously Brian and I agreed to come lead the senior house so we could have one last hoorah together. And what a hoorah it was.

The weekend started off on a great note when I overheard one of my most favorite girls telling all of the other girls that my blog is lame. I spent the rest of the weekend guilt tripping her and telling her what a jerk she is, because I feel like that is the most Biblical and effective way to encourage change in another person… don’t you? Regardless, I still love her.

Focus consisted of a series of rallies at the church, small group sessions (nothing is small about 30 18-year-olds), a mission experience in east Austin, and 2 hours of roller skating at a really shady establishment called “Millennium” where money was stolen and everything smelled like poop. Yes, like actual poop. Add in the fact that 200+ middle and high school students were taking their shoes on and off to slide into their roller skates, and you get sweaty B.O. + poop. It did nothing to build my appetite, to say the least.

And speaking of appetite, let me just tell you a little about what our diet consisted of for the weekend: brownies, muffins, queso, chips, m&m’s (peanut AND regular), Chick Fil A nuggets, more queso, somefruitandveggiesbutnobodycaresaboutthehealthy stuff, breakfast tacos, cookies, candy, every type of chip imaginable, sandwiches, pizza, cheeseburgers, ice cream. By the weekend’s end, my insides were crying out for help and I had drifted into some unpleasant food/sleep deprivation-induced coma. We drove back to Richmond after a quick lunch with my parents and the Wheelers on Sunday. And when I say, “we drove,” I mean that Brian drove, and I slept. And apparently it was a deep sleep, because I woke up not once, but twice with massive puddles of drool on my pillow. Attractive, I know.

So anyway, back to the weekend. It was great—I have missed those girls and it was really great to catch up with them and learn about all of the things going on in their lives that I haven’t been able to infer from facebook. Although I must admit that my facebook stalking skills are pretty superior, so they were surprised at what all I had picked up just from my trusty old mini-feed.

As far as the boys go, I have missed them too, but 18 year old boys really require a lot of patience. And that is an understatement. I really just think these boys and I come from very, very different planets. And their planet is one where showering is optional, and it is perfectly acceptable to seductively consume fruit during small group sessions in an effort to get attention. And did I mention that some of them even have girlfriends? Baffling, I know. Ok I’m kidding, they are nice boys… it’s just that they are… well, boys. Enough said.

Anyway, I think it will take me a good week to catch up on the sleep I missed out on, and at least 4 times that long to burn off all of the calories I consumed, but it is safe to say that it was well worth it. Not only did I have fun re-living high school with what seemed like a slumber party on steroids, but Brian and I also learned a lot from the speakers and left encouraged and challenged.
And by the way, if you happen to be one of those seniors that decided to give my blog a read, I hope that it didn’t prove Amy and her “lame” accusations to be true :o) Much love to you all!