Sunday, October 26, 2008

10 Things I'm Loving at this Moment

1. The phrase "Aunt Joanna... I wuv you!" I can't hear that enough.
2. Joshua wanting to cuddle with me. It's going to be a bummer when he's too old to cuddle with his aunt. For now though I'll cuddle just as long as he wants!
3. Katelyn wanting to cuddle with me. Reading stories with her or combing her hair while we watch "Dancing with the Stars" are little memories I'll always cherish.
4. Eating dinner at home or at my sister's house with her family. Not spending the time driving to a restaurant and then waiting for a table, waiting to order, waiting for our food, waiting to pay, and driving home takes a lot of the crankiness out of the kids and leaves a lot more time to play. :) It's giving me more cheap quality time being the "cool" aunt.
5. My sister time... lately it's been a drive home together from church or a drive to Bunco together, but it's those times when I get to talk to LaRae without children distracting either of us that I get some great bonding time in.
6. My bro in law being cool with me being over and playing with the kids a lot. It makes a difference to have him actually mention something to the kids about how lucky they are to have their aunt around to play with. It makes me feel more a part of the family and much less like the lonely bother that I sometimes feel like. :)

OK I'll move out of the family stuff now.

7. Learning how to spend money wisely. Hi. My name is Joanna and I'm a shopaholic. No seriously, I'm fully admitting it now and am working on it. I've taken the Becky Bloomwood stance of MMM or CB (make more money or cut back). I've chosen (or life has chosen for me) to CB. After a week I'm already really learning that I don't need to go buy things to feel better about myself.
8. My puppy dog. OK I always love him, but Sprinkles has been extra cuddly and fun lately.
9. My job. I have to keep reminding myself of this. I love the challenge of teaching Geometry even if sometimes it's stressful. I have always felt that I was put on this earth to teach, and even when it's stressful (which it's really been lately), I need to lift my head, find my joy again, and focus on being the best I can be at what I do.
10. My DVR. Petty. Worldly. I know. I don't care! I LOVE my DVR. I love not being tied down to my TV but always being able to catch my shows. I love the random surprises that my series recordings catch like new "Jonas Brothers: Living the Dream" 5 minute segments. It's ok. I'll admit I love JB! lol.

I have more, but I thought it would be good to share a nice even 10 tonight. I need to start blogging with pictures again soon. Oh well. Stop for a moment and think about the 10 things you're loving at this moment. :)

Friday, October 17, 2008

Putting Lives on the Line

Have I ever told you about my good friend Paul? He'll do anything for his friends, and I mean ANYTHING!

Tonight we had a slightly humorous occurrence. I took Sprinkles out around 10 pm for a quick walk, and when I walked out my door and across the street, I noticed a 2 ft by 2 ft box covered in white paper. On the box was written "STOP AND LOOK", and it appeared to have holes in it. After staring at it for a while I decide not to approach it, but I do start looking all over the place for the people who must be Punking me. Not a soul is around; I hear no quiet laughter; I see nothing but the now hugely freaky box. Look people, it's the post-9/11 era. People shouldn't leave oddly marked, wrapped packages around without a clear purpose!

So I walked Sprinkles elsewhere in the complex and came home. Fearful that LaRae and Randy were already asleep, I decided to call Paul. He lives close, and I knew he and Jennifer would be catching up on their DVR stuff tonight. Yeah, so I relay the info about the box to him, and he agrees it's freaky. However, I don't want to call emergency maintenance (bc the last time I did it was for a weird chemical smell in my apartment, and they thought I was insane, but I thought I was going to die in my sleep from breathing the strange gas), and I'm scared to call 911 for fear of a policeman yelling at me for being silly. Without hesitation Paul says he'll be over shortly.

I decided to go outside to wait for him, so I grabbed my broom (so we could poke the box), and I hunted for a safe spot to duck behind while Paul poked the box. I found a minivan nearby and decided that was a sturdy enough spot that maybe a bomb wouldn't kill me... Looking back, I think I was still too close. Anyways, Paul arrives with a flashlight (super smart since I forgot to tell him the box was right under a streetlight) and a baseball bat -- while it was sturdier than my broom, it wasn't as long. Did I mention my first fear wasn't a bomb but something live (bc I thought there were holes in the box) and dangerous?

At this point you're probably thinking, "Joanna, go to bed and leave it alone!" Well I'm not that person. What if it was dangerous, and I didn't do anything about it, and someone got hurt?! I'd never forgive myself. It HAD to be investigated for the people of my complex!

In all fairness, I've left out another part too. On the hydrant across the street from the box is an arrow with a sign saying Labradoodles will be "on sale" this weekend. Coincidence though, I'm sure...

Back to Paul and the baseball bat! So I was laughing like crazy bc I just know I'm being insane, and it's probably nothing. Paul is looking at me like I'm insane for laughing (mostly bc I think at that point he was praying but counting on being blown up). He actually told me that he thought I needed to be further away for this (him poking the box) -- which also made me laugh, but I did run behind my newly staked out minivan.

So Paul began the exploration of the box. He examined it from all sides. Nothing. He did stop to look around for the people punking us like I did (again I laughed bc I knew he was listening for quiet laughter from the bushes too). He poked it. Nothing. He then told me to get behind the van better. He rolled it over -- with the bat. I braced for the explosion. Nothing. Hm. I was starting to get a little sheepish feeling. He rolled to to one side and unwrapped it partially with the bat. Whew! Still nothing. OK so then after looking with the flashlight a bit better, he really went for it and reached into the box. I think there was paper or a piece of cardboard?? lol. Yeah, it was an empty box. So he sat it back up and sort of re-wrapped it.

Our bet is that it's either there to draw attention to the labradoodle sign or else people will be set up there with some labradoodles tomorrow... although why set up in a complex? I do think they'll be fairly confused as to why someone unwrapped their box. Lol. :) Oh well... don't leave a wrapped box with no clear purpose sitting out in a post-9/11 world!

The sobering thing in all of this is the thought that it could have really been something bad. Paul could be dead now... so could I. I should have called emergency maintenance and let them deal with it. While I super appreciate Paul for literally risking his life for me and my insane curiosity, it was sort of dumb for us to mess with that box. So scary event, turned out good. We'll laugh about my paranoia in weeks to come. Thank goodness for friends who indulge your fears and help you feel safe!

Monday, October 06, 2008

Follow Up

Well Folks -- I thought I should write a follow up to my last post -- if I even have any readers left. I did get to go to the funeral afterall. My next door teacher at work gave me some frequent flyer miles to help me be near my family. Isn't God great? :) It was where I needed to be. I don't really want to write about it much though. It was just so surreal; even seeing her doesn't make her feel truly gone. Please pray for my family for time to heal the pain.

On a totally different note: I'm struggling with an emotion tonight that I don't truly have too often... well is "hate" an emotion? I mean true, teeth-clenching, body-shaking, seeing-red hate. What bothers me the most is while I'm hating him, I'm hating myself too. I hate that I let him get in my head and bother me, that I spent so much wasted time with him, that I knew he would never fit in my world and I tried to force him in anyways. I hate that I was so desperate to have someone that I settled for someone totally wrong for me. I hate that he's trying to make me jealous by saying he has someone -- but he's lied to me before, so why believe him now?? I hate that while I don't want him anymore, I don't want anyone else to want him. Mostly I hate how moronic, ridiculous, and not a match for me that he is. It's not fair to feel like that about someone. It's not loving, it's not Christian. Hate isn't of God, but right now I can't see straight. I'm letting my emotions get the best of me, but I don't know where this emotion is coming from. Well maybe if I'm honest it's coming from disappointment in myself. My disappointment hinges on him and our past together. I regret that year or more of time I was with him. I regret the wasted time that I could have been doing something else -- something better with my life. Why did I fool myself into believing that being with someone who wasn't the One was better than being lonely? Lonely is always better. I need to get used to lonely. Make it my friend. Me and lonely -- we're together now.

I know most of that doesn't make sense, and right now I just don't care! I know it's childish to post this on my blog, but again I just don't care. I know I'm throwing a lot out there but ya know... you get the picture. Whatever.