Monday, May 28, 2007

Workin' hard(ly) for the money

What a beautiful Memorial Day! And what a fun-filled, goal-achieving Memorial weekend! Friday night was our first night in our new house. It was spent running to Walmart (we were in desperate need of a shower curtain) and doing some light unpacking. We were asleep by 9:30. Saturday I had big plans. I was hittin' the yard sales, as I do every Saturday. But this Saturday was The Yard Sale. The 5-mile Joel Road Yard Sale. PLUS a community yard sale at Union Pines High. Jackpot! I raced off to Union Pines, angry at myself for oversleeping, because it started at 6 a.m. and all the good stuff was gonna be gone. It was practically 7:30 by the time I got started, and all that was left was junk. 5 boxes of trashy romance novels (not Inspirational romance novels, which I would have forked over the cash for) and some old Union Pines uniforms. Kind of weird. A little deflated, I started my journey onto Joel Road. For those of you not from around here, this is an annual yard sale where the people on this road all have yard sales on this one specific day. It is crowded as junk, awkward, scary, frustrating - yet an absolute must. My first stop, I got some onesies for 25 cents (for future babies or baby showers) and baby socks for 5 cents. I was offered a breast pump from the lady giving the yard sale but politely refused. My next several stops were disappointing, as I hungrily pawed through boxes of books only to find more trashy romance novels. I finally bought something at a yard sale where the theme was Makeup. I bought cotton balls for a dollar cheaper than I was planning on buying them at Lowe's later that afternoon, and a pretty tube of lipgloss for $1. (Note: I wore the lipgloss yesterday. After about 3 seconds, my lips started burning and I was afraid they were going to blister. I wiped off the lipgloss and slathered Vaseline on my lips. Turns out the lipgloss was that "plumping" lipgloss. So not worth it!!) After several more stops, and only buying two more things, I wanted off of this road. Traffic was at a standstill because of people trying to find parking, people running in front of cars, and people just aimlessly wandering on the side of the road, assuming they weren't going to get run over. As soon as I hit the end of the road, I felt such a sense of freedom. You might think that that experience has made me realize that it's not worth it to hit that yard sale next year. Tut, tut, my friend. I didn't plan as I should have. I've already mapped out my strategy for next May....

I got to mom and dad's at about 11:00, famished from skipping breakfast and walking in the hot sun for 4 hours. Luckily, mom said, "Want to go to 195 for lunch?" Boy, did I!! I could already taste that stir-fry. So, mom, dad, and I went to 195 for lunch and shopping. Then it was time for me to go home and try to unpack some more before Stephen got home. Steve and Aaron came with Stephen, along with all of our furniture and everything left in our storage shed. They stayed for a few hours, unloading and putting together everything for us. We ordered pizza from the Village Pizza (okay,but too expensive for the taste) and were in bed by 9:15.

Yesterday, I spent the early morning hours unpacking, then went to church, and then headed to mom and dad's for lunch. Left early-ish to go home and unpack so that I could impress Stephen with how much I got done. Ended up unpacking for about 3 hours straight (plus doing dishes, dusting, etc.) and then realizing I had to be at choir practice by 5:45. Tried to think of an excuse why I couldn't go but couldn't come up with anything that was valid. Went to choir practice, and church, went home, watched an episode of The Office. We were in bed by 9:15. I totally overslept this morning, don't know if it was just because of so much unpacking or what. Tonight after work I have to go straight to play practice and then it's off to Jenn and Matt's for a Memorial Day cookout! Then I will try to get home before Stephen goes to bed so I can actually see him. The next three days I will see him at least a few hours a day because he is off. I miss him. As soon as we finish unpacking I think we will see each other more and be able to have more quality time together. But I'll tell ya what, there's nothing like having a conversation and not having to hear anyone else's input on it. (Although we each have one person in our family who I am REALLY tired of hearing their advice for us.) And there's nothing like having a shower with actual pressure. And sleeping with our door open. And so many other little things that you miss when you're living with someone temporarily. Even though it's fun to unpack, I long for a day when I can come home and just sit with Stephen and do something mind-numbing like watch a movie. Or play a game. Well, that day will come.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Tomorrow we start Memorializing.

When I leave work today sometime between 5:30 and 5:45 pm, it will really start my Memorial Day weekend. This is why:

Tomorrow, my boss and supervisor are leaving on their vacation for Memorial Day. They won't return until Tuesday morning. That means that tomorrow, Saturday (if I choose to work on Saturday) and Monday are pretty much "free" days. Of course I'll get some work done... perhaps.

Tuesday after work I had to go straight to drama practice at church. Drew and I are doing a new play for June that will be really good. Stephen got his script for his play in August. Wednesday after work we went straight to youth group. Stephen taught and I did our new trivia segment. We had youth group outside which was itchy and distracting. But I couldn't say anything because we were 10 minutes late. Tonight, after work we will go straight to church for Peer Pressure Party for the teens. Tomorrow, after work, I will go HOME. To my NEW HOUSE. And only my husband will be there!! And we will live in peace all of our days.

Yesterday was dad's final singalong at school. Anyone who has never had the opportunity to go to a singalong is missing out on one of my favorite childhood memories. Dad has these great songs that his class sings as a reward, like once every 6 weeks or so. I went, as did my friend Jenn C. who was in dad's class with me in second grade. We sang every song at the top of our lungs. And then she cried. I think she wants to revert back to second grade. (Don't we all at some point!) Anyway, the singalong was so much fun, and the kids in dad's class this year are so great. I walked around with Zoey (Jenn's baby) on my hip, pretending she was mine, and hoping people thought she was mine because of how cute she is. I can see why people think it's better to steal babies. It's a lot easier than going through all that hassle for nine months.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Old friends, new friends, red friends, blue friends

Tonight we went out with an old and new friend. The old friend is the former Jenn T. (now Jenn C.) The new friend is her husband Anthony. We went to the River Lodge for dinner. We ended up just sitting around talking after dinner, not caring what time it was because Stephen didn't have to leave until after 8 and they didn't have anywhere to be until 8:30. Jenn and I went out two or three weeks ago. It was the first time we'd seen each other in over 5 years. But we had kept up communication very well through phone calls and letters. She has a beautiful baby girl named Zoe and another little boy?girl? that will greet us in October. I was unsure of Anthony because I know that Jennifer is someone who is so sweet that she is easily taken advantage of. I am pleased to find that Anthony is quiet, laidback, and seems to balance out Jennifer's activeness nicely. We are probably going bowling in a couple of weeks, and they have no idea what they're in for. I RAWK at bowling! And I don't like to lose. If one of them wins, I will smile, laugh, and congratulate them. Then once I sit down in the passenger seat of our car and the doors are closed and the windows are rolled up, I will sulk. I'll sulk until Stephen growls at me to relieve myself of my bad mood. I know that it's just a game. But games are no fun unless you win!

The other day on the field trip with dad, we played a game called Poison River. You take ropes and make the width of the "river" wider and wider and keep trying to jump over it. Dad said, "There are no winners or losers with this game. You will lose a foot or leg if you don't make it over. But there are no losers."

Tonight when Stephen gets off work he will be done with night shift. Then he'll go on day shift which is 5am-2pm. That will take some work to get used to I'm sure! Tomorrow we have a full day. Church, then straight to Knollwood for some golf, then straight to church for L.B.'s baby shower, then church, then home to crash! Today we took some stuff over to our house. Stephen mowed the lawn and used the weed-eater. I poisoned the weeds and moved some things into our closet and bathroom. Not a whole lot we can do in the house until the floors are completely done.

I can't believe I'm still up at 10:00. I know that sounds early but I'm on a perfect sleep schedule right now and I don't want to get screwed up. So, off I go!

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Those who can't teach, chaperone.

Today was such an exciting day! Lots of stuff accomplished. Today was the day that I chaperoned for dad's class on their field trip to the House in the Horseshoe and the old schoolhouse. I went kind of nervously to the school today, mainly because I'm really not very good with kids. I never know what to say to them or on what level I should speak to them. But I walked into that classroom, and doggone it if they weren't immediately waving at me and accepting me! I sat with Emma on the bus, of course, but spent my day hanging out with mainly her, Autumn, Sarah, Latavia, Spencer, and Jacob, all who latched onto me very quickly for one reason or another. We toured the House in the Horseshoe, played games, ate a picnic lunch, and then went to the old schoolhouse. This is where the fun really starts. I honestly can't describe all that goes on there. Dad "teaches" the kids from an old 1800s schoolbook, gives the bad kids switchings, seats them in a chair with a Dunce cap on, and they play games outside. As soon as I walked in the door from that, Stephen and I packed up our stuff and went to our house. Beginning at 3:30 we were in work mode. Our bedroom furniture was delivered yesterday. Our goal today was for the two of us to unload, put together, and place every bit of that furniture. Included is:

One bed - 168 lbs
5 Drawer chest - 150 lbs
2 nightstands - 150 lbs
Mirror for our dresser - 50 lbs
Dresser - 190 lbs.

LAWDY! Can you believe the two of us moved all that? You should have heard the prayers escaping my breathless lips when we were moving in the dresser. I knew if I dropped that thing, Stephen would kill me! *Side note: if we had paid people to do this for us I wouldn't have had to worry about that. Although now that it's over I'm glad we didn't shell out $500 for the people to do it.* Anyway, we both lived through it. Ran to Subway to get footlongs because we were some hungry workers. Ran to the dumpster to dump our trash (intermittently stopping to tie down the boxes that were leaking trash). Ran to church and got to youth group 6 minutes late. At least we weren't teaching this week! Now I am posting this and some pictures and hitting the hay! Poor Stephen is at work by now, starting his nine hours there. Bless his heart.

So, I just want to post a few pictures that made the field trip today SO awesome. Even if you don't know the kids (which you won't), these pictures are very fun.

Monday, May 14, 2007

I'm a HO! (Home Owner, crazy)

Stephen and I are official home owners in Pinebluff, NC! Woot woot! Our closing was rocketed up to 2:00 pm today. We had the keys by 5:00 pm. I took mom and dad to the house tonight. Mom couldn't climb the stairs but I took pictures of the upstairs bedrooms and showed them to her. They loved the house. Me too! I will try not to obsess too much over this as I hate when people center their lives around one central thing like this. But it is a lot of fun to obsess.

What I mean when I say "center their lives around one central thing":

> I can remember planning our wedding. I don't remember anyone else being alive in the world except for me and Stephen. Everything was centered around us. You want to know what we're having for dinner tonight? Well, I don't know, but at our wedding we're having bruschetta! You like the way that candle smells? You should smell the flowers in my bouquet! Etc. etc. I was very self-centered. And not very helpful in other people's weddings, like Dear Ole Sis.
> I have, as you know, many pregnant friends right now. They blame EVERYTHING on being pregnant. You're tired? It's from this baby. Hungry? Eating for two. Grumpy? Crazy woman hormones. Slow? You're weighted down. There's an excuse for it all. And they all feel the need to continually point out the fact that they're pregnant. Mind you, these are women who are 7-8 months into it. It's quite obvious.

Those are probably the main things for my age group. Maybe retirees do it too:

Bill: Hey Ted, do you want to go golfing next Saturday?
Ted: Sure, but what about two months from now? I'll be retired! Woot woot!

I don't know, that doesn't irritate me for some reason.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Is your doctor's office in a doublewide?

So, I'd like to publically announce my astonishment at what happened to me today. I had a doctor's appointment at Pope, my first one there. Imagine my surprise when I am pointed towards the medical building. Which is a trailer. Like your old art trailer in the back of the school? Yeah, that one. It has approximately two exam rooms. I can't believe the difference in Pope and Charleston.

My appointment was mainly for the purpose of getting my birth control pill prescription filled. So, I had to go through all the nurse stuff (getting my vitals, why am I there?, what meds am I taking? etc.) My reason for being there? Well, as soon as I said why I was there, the nurse kind of chuckled and said, "Oh, they sent you to the wrong doctor. She's pro-life and won't prescribe birth control." I was absolutely shocked. I have heard of pharmacists refusing to fill prescriptions of BC before, but I NEVER thought it would happen to me. I just sort of sputtered for about 30 seconds.

My thoughts in those 30 seconds: Should I take this as a sign that we're supposed to try to start our family now? Stephen will be thrilled when I tell him this. What money will we use on this child? Can I get this prescription from a different doctor? What if my insurance doesn't cover that? I have to find someone to prescribe this for me. IS THIS LEGAL??

(My mind was racing.) In the end, one of the nurses tracked down a doctor who would sign the order for my pill and I got a three month supply. But even now, I am feeling many different emotions. Concern - I don't know if this is legal, but everyone went along with it so I assume it is. Anger - who is she to decide if I can't use birth control? Judged - I am a 24 year old married woman who is a deeply devoted Christian. How dare she make me feel as though I should be ashamed for being on birth control? How dare she make me feel like I am a 15 year old sneaking in a forged permission slip so that I can go bang a few guys from my high school when my parents are out of town? Worry - what if this was my opportunity to get off the pill and now I've blown it? (Because I'm not willingly going to quit taking it just yet.) Sadness - how many people are having to pay out of their pockets for BC because of doctors like this? Or worse yet, how many can't afford to pay out of their pockets and get pregnant and feel like they have to abort their children or give them up for adoption?

My research on the Internet mainly follows pharmacists who won't fill prescriptions. Many conservatives (not necessarily of any specific religion) believe that pregnancy begins at the moment of fertilization and that the Pill kicks in after fertilization, therefore killing whatever life may be in the womb. ( One major point in this battle is the fact that the Pill is used for so many things besides birth control. Many people use it to control acne, balance their hormones, shrink fibroids, reducing ovarian cancer risk, and actually several other things. If I told my doctor I was using BC to control my acne, would she have prescribed it to me?

One doctor from Duke says it all: "I have a hard time with people who market themselves as women's health care physicians but who won't prescribe such a basic part of women's health care. We're seeing a growing trend among pharmacists and medical practitioners who consider it acceptable to impose their morality on women's bodies. I don't think moral aspects should be a concern. Imagine a pharmacist asking a customer whether his Viagra prescription is to enhance sexual performance in his marriage or in an extramarital affair. Never!"

Well, my soapbox is getting full. I better get off of it. Anyone else got anything to say about it?

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Welcome, New Earthlings

I'd like to welcome two beautiful babies into this world from this week!

Above: Miss Carly Ann Riggs

Above: Mr. Jack Rose

I'm so glad that these lovely ladies each had healthy birthing experiences! It makes me more likely to think about having children.

I told Jenn that I wasn't going to post tonight because I was having such a bad day. Really, just a bad time frame - not the whole day was bad. But then again, people have to see the dark side of Amanda every so often. And tomorrow, I won't remember how tired I am right now, or how frustrated I was almost being late for church, or how anxious I felt driving home from Chapel Hill in the rain, seeing four wrecks and praying that I wasn't the next one (as well as praying for my Dear Ole Sis who was on the roads too), or how sad I was that I didn't get to see Stephen tonight, or how irritated I was when the youth group leader didn't show up for youth group and I had to pull a lesson out of my butt, or how I am SO OVER the drama between two certain people. Okay I probably won't forget that I am SO OVER the drama. I knew a game of cards would straighten out all those emotions. So I played with Stephen's grandma. And she whupped me. But I feel better all the same. Maybe because during that game I realized that my day wasn't so tough compared with some people in this very house.

And today was actually a good day up until the point where the bottom fell out of the sky. I hate driving in rain. Granny and Granddaddy came up to visit mom. And it was nice enough outside that we could go walking in the butterfly garden at the hospital. Then we went to the bath and body sale in the children's hospital lobby. Then we went to the gift shop and got mom some badly needed salt and vinegar chips.

I best be off. I have a doc's appointment on Pope tomorrow morning so I need to rest up so I look perky and healthy for him/her.

Monday, May 7, 2007

The Barn is overpriced, I don't care that it's a classic

Today was overall a pretty good day. I worked only for a couple of hours (which sounds really fun but actually when that happens I just picture dollar signs with wings, like in the old comic books.) Then I went to jury duty to see if I could get myself out of it. It was actually kind of fun hanging out with some of these strangers. I seem to find myself really getting along with women over 40 for some reason. We just click. (Am I that old lady-ish or are they just young at heart?) We had to watch this birdbrained* video for "Potential Jurors." Hosted by Walter Cronkite. Are you yawning yet? It talked about how jury duty isn't a duty at all, and it should really be called jury service. Hah! And THEN at one point in the video, it says, "At some point you may be dismissed from being a juror for any number of reasons. Please don't take offense at this." At this point, people really started guffawing. Anyway, because of mom being in the hospital (bless her heart, I've used her as an excuse for so many things but she seems happy to be of service) I was able to get my "service" deferred until July 30. Then I'll do my blessed duty.

Anyway, then tonight I went out with some of the girlies from church. We ate at The Barn whichiswayoverpricedinmyopinionandyougetsmallportionsandreallythefoodisnotthatmuchbetterthanmostplacesthatarealotcheaper. But it was fun anyway. And my friend Allison announced her pregnancy! I am so thrilled for her. So let's take count:

1 - friend this year who has already had a baby
2 - friends this year who are starting to try to get pregnant
3 - friends this year who are pregnant at this moment

I'm tellin' ya, there's something in the air around here. And before you ask - I'm not holding my breath but I'm not taking deep breaths either. And that's all I have to say about that.

* I actually just used to look up a synonym for the word "retarded". I hate using that word but this video really was just that.

Saturday, May 5, 2007

I'll see you at the Women's PGA Tour in 2007

Well, it looks as though I'm a natural at yet another sport. Today I went golfing for the first time. I went with Stephen, Jesse and Ronnie. And not to brag, but I'm pretty sure I'm the most versatile golfer any of those guys had ever seen. Not only can I swing perfectly into the ground rather than messing up the ball, when I do hit the ball, I can hit it all the way to the left, all the way to the right, or just a few feet in front of the tee so it's less walking distance.

In reality, I wasn't that bad. We played Captain's Choice and actually used my hits every once in a while. Meghann Barnes and her boyfriend were playing right in front of us which was very random! It was good to see her again. Last night Stephen surprised me by buying several boxes of pink ribbon golf balls. And him and Jesse saw some pink ribbon golf clubs. I might be able to be convinced to buy them at some point in my life.

So, we're able to really start counting down the days until we close on our house. We set the closing date for May 14 but we're attempting to move it up to May 11. Then we are getting the hardwood floors redone which will take a week. So definitely by the end of May we'll be in our new house! Alone! By ourselves! Amazazing!

I really did want to update this but I'm distracted. I'm smelling dinner, hearing Roseanne in one room, hearing Ultimate Fighter in this room, Stephen's talking to me (I'm not going to interrupt him because he's complimenting me on my golf game), so I'm stopping for now.