Wednesday, January 27, 2010

I love my owl friend!!!

Remember a week or so ago when I posted about my etsy wishes? It was wishfull window shopping at its finest right? Well fast forward to today...I had a super busy, crazy, stressful, overly long day. I was gone and running around for about 14 hours. I came home though and found a package waiting for me. I never get packages, aside from the textbooks that suck up all my money (and time!). Guess what it was? The super cute owl decal straight from my etsy wish list!

Apparently my friend Lynn decided to order it for me, how awesome is that? Anyways it made my entire day better. How cute is he in my office? I put him by my books because a) its cute coming out of the bookshelf, and b) he is in my direct line of sight while I am sitting at my desk stressing over homework and dissertation. I love him! Ahh, the simple things in life....

Thanks Lynn, you made my day!! : )

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Material things seem so mundane after an enriching experience...

I am a huge proponent of volunteer work. I think it is one of the best ways to give back to the community. It doesn't often involve much monetary commitment, and can be one of the best experiences you can have on so many levels. There is a unique personal growth that happens from helping someone in a situation where nothing tangible is returned to you. The experience and personal aspects that are gained are far superior to any monetary my opinion!

That said, it has been a few years since I have done any volunteer work and I was definitely feeling the void. I have been interested in hospice work for quite some time and have had roadblocks for one reason or another. Well, I finally made it to the training this weekend; 18 hours of grief and death work...thats enough to drain even the strongest person! It was an absolutely amazing experience though, I highly recommend it to anyone who wants to be more comfortable with death. I am drawn to grief and love to be with people who can talk about death and who are ok with allowing that space for anxiety and discomfort. It was very honored to be in a room with such diverse and interesting people and be allowed to share in the emotions and growth. (I know Im being a sap here, but I was truly moved!) There is something amazing about sharing an experience with a bunch of people who are so different, but who have a common goal and outlook on life and the meaning derived from personal experiences. The people there this weekend ranged from first year computer tech students to practicing acupuncturists, where else do you get to share profound experiences with such a diverse range of people...for free?!Thats another great thing about volunteering, its free training and a free chance for personal growth. You can't beat that!

I am so excited to start working with patients. I know excited may not be the best word, but its just so amazing to think that I will be allowed into these people's homes during such a difficult and personal time. To me, that level of sharing and exposure is the highest honor someone can give you. Im so excited for the journey.
What have been your volunteer experiences? Does anyone else get as much joy out of these things as me?!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Coveting Etsy...

My friend lynn turned me on to Etsy a year or so ago and I am hooked! Granted, I have no money to buy things...but its a really fun place to browse around and make wish lists! Here is a sampling of my "to buy, someday when I make money off my career rather than spend money on it, list!!"

I am obsessed with big fun bags, and I am absolutely in love with this awesome purple bag!!

Ok, so the bed itself is a bit "old fashioned" looking (yeah, ugly), but I love the idea of having a connected pet bed! Although I am sure it is only good in theory and is never actually where the dog sleeps :)

I have this new love for owls and this guy is adorable! How cute would this be in my office?

...and this decal over our bed! Im really liking the wall decals, they are simple but really interesting. What an easy way to decorate!

I think I could wear these sweater dresses every single day! I love them and they look amazingly comfortable.
And there is oh so much if I only had money!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

I love this show!!

Tell me you have watched Modern Family, it is hilarious! :) Cameron is the best character on tv!

I think he is hilarious, I love him! He makes the whole show....well Gloria helps too I guess ; )

Have you seen it? Don't you love it?! What is everyone else watching this season?

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

More bus humor

Every regular public transportation patron knows the unwritten rule of relative silence that is expected. This is particularly true on the early morning commute, everyone needs their time to silently prep for the day. When someone misses the memo and babbles on loudly either to their neighbor or on the phone, it is pretty obvious. You can see the other people looking around in disgust. How do you not realize that everyone is silently stewing while listening to your obnoxious conversation?!

Well, I heard the best of the best (...well worst, I guess) this week on my morning bus ride. Everyone was silently riding the bus minding their own business, then this woman walked on, yapping away on her cell phone. Here is how the conversation went;

Mom, you have to come! We need three people so we can afford it!
(all other bus riders sighing and groaning as she enters and disrupts their morning relax time)
Mom! Its not that I don't know how much it will be.
Ok, so the rooms are $67 and we need three of if you come then we can split it 3 ways.
(more groaning)
I dont know how much that will be mom!
(other now look around with a glint of humor emerging)
Mom, I don't know, how am I supposed to just know how much it will be? It cant be that much the rooms are cheap and we only need 3, plus we are splitting it 3 ways!
(people are now sharing humorous glances)
Ok ok jeesh mom, Ill figure it out, I think my phone has a calculator.
(now she is yelling into the phone while she calculates this difficult math problem out on her phone's calculator)
Ok mom, here I am using my calculator. So it will be $67 times 3 rooms...and then divided by 3 people.....(pause for calculations)...see mom it will only be $67, thats cheap!
(people now are holding back their laughter)
Mom, its gotta be right, I used my calculator!...Fine, Ill figure it out again; $67 times 3 and then divided by 3....yeah, see its $67, thats what I said the first time right? Or no, I thought it was less than that, here Ill do it again....(and so it continued)

Ahh the entertainment of public transportation...

Monday, January 11, 2010

Pet hair!!

This is my biggest complaint (not that there are very many!) about pet ownership!! Pet hair everywhere! My first dog, Beau, was a Siberian Husky...and I lived in North Dakota with him (the land of extreme weather) meaning that he shed an inexplicable amount, so you would think I would be used to hair everwhere. The back seat of my car will actually forever be covered in his hair!

But no, I am still on a perpetual mission to find a way to rid my life of pet hair. I have tried special vacuum cleaners, hair "wands", giant sticky name it, I have tried it! Currently, we have a black dog and a white cat, meaning that there are no clothing options that don't show hair. Our apartment is covered in area rugs because there is a linoleum problem (don't ask) and the combination of multiple floor types and the pet hair is impossible to conquer! The rugs are hard to vacuum, the linoleum is only visable in sporadic areas and around the baseboards, so hair collects there in completely inconvenient places! (picture me screaming...and hair flying into my mouth, most likely!!)

Help!! I know I have fellow pet hair sufferers out there in blog world, I need ideas. I'm clean out of them!!

Monday, January 4, 2010

Bus stop shenanigans

Ahh the entertainment value of bus stops! I had never rode the bus until I moved here and I had no idea it could be so entertaining! I once saw a guy without shoes or socks, covered in blood with a huge gash bleeding on his head, walking through the rain...asking for money, yikes! I have also seen a man in too small women's jeans and a little girls tank top doing a strip tease in the aisle....its never boring.

Today I was waiting for my bus and a hispanic man came up to me and started talking to me in Spanish. He was completely oblivious to my lack of understanding, so I just let him continue. At one point he must have asked me a question because he stopped talking and looked at me, obviously waiting for a response. He then asked again (in English!) if I had a boyfriend. I said, nope but I do have a girlfriend. This was obviously a surprise to him and he responded with a five minute rant on the "evils of gay people!" Awesome. Just take the rejection and leave buddy. I didn't understand most of his rant, but what I did get out of it was that gay people cause tornadoes...he actually said that! I just sat and stared ahead of me praying for the bus to come and save me. I need to learn Spanish, I had some good arguments ready for this guy!

Oh wait, the best part is yet to come! After his rant of which I only picked out a few phrases, he ended with "Ok, so phone number?" Really?! What did he think, that I was going to say "Oh wow, I didn't know my evilness was causing tornadoes, thanks for sharing! I would love to go sleep with you as a thank you!" Come on buddy! My gasp of disgust must have gotten the message across because he shrugged his shoulders, called me evil again and walked away. Ahh, the bus stop....

Friday, January 1, 2010

No resolutions....

I have never really been one to make New Years resolutions, its all a little too cliche for me. My vegetarianism was technically a resolution 3 years ago, but it was something I was going to do anyways, New Years just gave a good date to start it! As I was reading through all the resolution and New Years (is that supposed to be capitalized?!) posts though, I found this idea to be very inspiring.

I find myself drawn towards words that epitomize a situation or that are particularly meaningful. That is part of my introverted nature, we are not generally drawn to outside stimuli, so when we are it is generally meaningful....anyways, I digress! So, the idea of picking a word to focus on for the year, rather than goals that are too easily broken, was something that I was immediately drawn to.

So, I started to think about what is to come for me in 2010 and decide on a word that will help me to make the most of it. I chose balance (I just realized now that is one of the words in her original post, I swear I didn't steal that also, only the idea of the word!). 

My year is going to be busy and likely very stressful. I am focusing on my dissertation, with a pretty strict timeline set out for me by my chair (professor who acts as my advisor and keeps me accountable during the process...and ultimately decides if I pass) who I really respect and do not want to disappoint. I am also finishing up my coursework and am going to start a job in the field part time. One of the things that I have struggled with throughout grad school so far is the ability to allow myself personal time and...well, a life basically!...while also focusing on what needs to be done for school. I anticipate that I will need quite a bit of self care in order to get through the struggles of the year. This is why I chose balance, it is a very hard thing for me to find, but also something that I find to be essential for my well being. Wish me luck!

What are your resolutions/goals/aspirations/hopes/etc.. for 2010?!