Archives of Our Lives

{a narrow and broad look into the lives of people I love}

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Pick Apart {of Me}

I know it's Wednesday only, but I felt like answering a Thursday question today.

Q [from Jennie]:

I have a question to be added to your Thursday posts' list.

Why do you put brackets around your titles? You don't do it all the time, but probably half of the time, so you must have a reason for it. So, why? What does it mean? (By brackets, I mean { }. I don't know what those are called.)

A [from me]:

Hi, Jennie! Who are you? There wasn't a link accompanying your name, so I don't have any idea who you are. Which is a lot like making you anonymous, only kind of worse, because I have a bit of a hint. If you are from Mesa and I have met you, you could be a few people. Jennie my neighbor, Jennie my aunt, Jennie who takes pictures, Jennie the mother of my best friend, Jennie from the block.

In regards to your question...WRONG! There is not really any rhyme or reason to
my use of {these things}.

First off, let's figure out what they're called. According to the most reliable source on the internet, {these} may be referred to as 1} squiggly brackets, 2} squigglies, 3} curly brackets, or 4} braces. I feel silly using the term "squiggly" in my daily discourse, and braces make me think of how I need to see the dentist, so for our intents and purposes, let's call them "curly brackets."

Secondly, my inspiration: {Frolic!}
A simple "if, then" statement should suffice. If someone does it... and I like it... then I do it. Queen of mimicry, that's me. Never had an original thought in my head.

You are right about one thing, though: I don't use curly brackets all the time in my titles.
Only sometimes. I never know when I am going to use them. Sometimes my titles just look like they need a little...something extra. So I hug them with curly brackets, and go along my merry way. It's not something I give any major thought. If it happens, it happens. If not, fine. {I suppose that makes me sound very spontaneous and full-of-life. Actually, most days, the use of curly brackets in my titles is the most adventurous thing that happens to me. Everybody should move to a country where they're legally forced to be lazy.}

However, since you're probably looking for a little more closure in your life, and I don't take the challenge "ask-me-anything" lightly, I've broken it down for you.

Here is a list of recent posts that have been titled with the use of curly brackets:

{A Lesson in Self-Assertion}
{I Put the Ab in Abnormal}
{Flip My Flop}
{The Dog Ate My Blog Post}
{Communism at its Finest}
{Life Lessons and Muffin Tops}

Here is a list of recent posts that have been freely titled:

The Saga of Steve vs. Ned--This is Mostly Speculation
I Wonder How Many Angels Had to Die in the Making of This Bed?
There's no Such Thing as Edward and Bella
And Then I Was Faced With My Day of Reckoning
I Turned 22 And All I Got Was Adult Acne.

So maybe I use the brackets with shorter titles, or titles that are not quite long enough to be my life history.

I don't know.

But thank you, Mystery Jennie, whoever you are. For caring. For reading. I hope I answered you enough.

And if you have any more questions, anyone....please. Don't hesitate to ask.

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I Turned 22 and all I Got Was Adult Acne.

On the inside of my right nostril, over the course of one night, I have contracted either a pimple or a bug bite.

I don't know which is worse.

On one hand, I might have a pimple inside my nose.

On the other hand, I may have inhaled a bug in the middle of the night; a bug which then proceeded to bite my nose.

So really, is there any way this is going to be a good day?

In case your Tuesday is looking anything like mine, I'm posting some pictures of my birthday flowers. It might just cheer you up.

Poor Kyle brought them to me in a brown paper bag from the flower place, and I was so excited to be able to arrange them myself. If anybody's gonna get me flowers, getting them so I can arrange them myself is much better than buying them already fancied up. Not that I'm any Eddie Ross or Jami Parker Pitts, but I still like to try.

I got that white pitcher from Goodwill for $1.99 and like it more than most people I know. [Not you people, though. Different people.]

Here's the arrangement from a step back...

And from one more step back. This is for anyone who's been bugging me to show pictures of my house. Happy Tuesday. And normally, those black candlesticks aren't there--they belong on a lower surface, but I recently had a little terror at my house, and he was obsessed with destroying anything at his eye level. I still haven't quite recovered.

{He sure is a cute little tyrant, though.}

{Oh yeah. And don't mind that crazy person in the mirror. She may or may not have just barely gotten out of bed. She hasn't showered in a while. She has nothing to do with the person who runs Archives of Our Lives. Nothing at all.}

And now for a few steps closer...close-ups of flowers make me smile.


...and pretty.

Mums are quickly becoming my favourite flower (second only to snapdragons). Especially these fall-coloured ones. Poor Kyle said he got these ones because I had them in my bouquet at our wedding almost a year ago.

Svelte, PK. Very svelte.

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Monday, September 29, 2008

Is There Anything More Tedious in all the World?

I am an adult; twenty two years of age, officially. I pay taxes (when I have a job) and fill my own gas tank (when I can't get Poor Kyle to do it for me). I make my bed (almost always now), and cook dinner (such as it is). For all intents and purposes, I'm a grown-up.

Why, then, do I hate brushing my teeth? Why?

I'll tell you why:

1. It's so tedious. You want me to just...stand there? In front of the mirror? The two times during the day that I look my absolute worst? For how long? Three minutes? Please.

2. ...

Never mind. There's only that one reason.

It is, though. Tedious, I mean. Nevertheless, I do brush my teeth on a regular basis (once a week, like clockwork [just kidding!]). I just get so...bored. I always have. When I was a kid, and didn't understand about bad breath and social faux pas and what-not, I would go to school without brushing my teeth all the time. [I didn't have a lot of friends.] Then, the day before I had a dentist appointment, I would get all stressed out and try brushing my teeth every five minutes or so, and then ten times right before the dreaded hour. It never worked. I always came out with 20 more cavities than before.

The only thing that's changed since then is that, as an "adult," I'm fairly sure there's no way around brushing my teeth twice daily. (Although...I still don't have many friends. Maybe I'm on to something...)

Yet for some reason I really enjoy flossing. Tell me it's time to brush my teeth, and I'll procrastinate as long as I can. But flossing--it's the highlight of my day. With flossing, I actually get to see the fruits (or bread particles, or pepper) of my labor. It's like a treasure hunt in my mouth! Every evening before bed! [Being able to floss from the comfort of my lush bed might have something to do with my joy.]

I've decided I have to make a game out of brushing my teeth.

Maybe if my toothpaste was a little person with feet who jumped out of the drawer every time I went to the bathroom and sang cheerful songs while I brushed...then again, that might just make me need a therapist. Image from here.

But the only one I can think of is see-how-quickly-I-can-run-back-to-bed-and-catch-a-power-nap-while-brushing. And I tried it once, but the complications with my bed sheets were horrible. Not worth it.

So I'm turning to you. Do you get bored with brushing your teeth, too? What games do you play to make yourself do it?

No? Nothing?

Oh. How awkward.

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Friday, September 26, 2008

How To Be Self-Taught at Anything.

Thank you, everyone, for all the birthday wishes. Nothing like a birthday to make me feel like everybody loves me. On a birthday, I have no enemies. On a birthday, I'm everyone's favourite person. Updates of the day will be coming next week.

But until then, I'm trying to learn the ever-so-complicated art of Photoshop CS3. [What? They have a CS4 now? Shoot.] It's not an easy task. Poor Kyle taught me what a layer was and how to use one, and Ree Drummond taught me everything else.

I don't want to take any classes or any true tutorials, because I would very much like to go around smugly telling people that "I am a self-taught Photoshop extraordinaire." There's something about being self-taught [at anything!] that makes me feel really vain.

So far so good. I know I like how this one turned out. What a cute little tongue my nephew has. All the better to exploit him with--that's what I say.

But when it came to this photo, I couldn't decide if I liked Option #1 or Option #2 better...

On the one hand, in the above photo (Option #1), Inquisitive Baby's eyes are bright and crisp, and his face looks soft and fluffy.

But on the other hand, in Option #2, my Inquisitive Baby's background is dark, and there's just enough contrast to provide visual stimulation.

Visual stimulation? I don't even know what an aperture is--how can I possibly talk about visual stimulation and get away with it?

So it's up to you, e-friends. Should I like #1 or #2 better? The differences are subtle, but I feel like I should have an opinion either way. And you are going to form that opinion for me [please, that is]! You can vote in the poll to the right, or comment on this post if you'd like to expound your reasoning. Also, if there are any amazing photography sites that make your world go round, please let me know of them.

I'm in the market for some inspiration.

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Wednesday, September 24, 2008

It's my party and I'll--oh, forget it.

It's my birthday.

And on this, the 25th of September, I would like to declare that I'm tired of keeping it real.

What I want, for just one day, is a whole lot of fake.

In other words, instead of my [self-made] birthday cake looking like this:

I want it to look like this:

Image from here.

Yeah. Uh...not so much. My birthday cake's crack is showing.

[At least the cake stand is adorable.]

...And instead of my war-zone post-birthday cake kitchen looking like this:

I want it to look more like this:

Image from here.

Instead of my gallbladder looking like this:

Utterly revolting image from here.

I want it to look like this:

Sunshine and daisies. Photo by Jim-AR.

It's my birthday, and I'd like some fake, of the Martha Stewart persuasion.

Please and thank you.

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Tuesday, September 23, 2008

He Calls Martha "Martha," and I Call Him Eddie Ross.

Hello world. Meet my new best friend:

Photo from here.

He looks good in vests. His name is Eddie Ross. Oh, and I'm evidently the last person in the world to become one hundred percent enamoured of him. I found his blog during a quest for design tips, and have been nothing short of obsessed ever since.

Here is a man who is talented with all things gorgeous. He designs living spaces, flowers, and table settings. He's been a caterer, a Food Network honcho, and is currently one of Martha Stewart's right-hand men (only he's taking a hiatus to be involved with "Top Design," a television show in its second season on the Bravo Network). In other words, he's the kind of guy I always thought I should marry, but it's a dadgum good thing I didn't because then I would've harbored an inferiority complex all the way to my death bed. (And anyway, I'm glad I ended up with Poor Kyle. Things worked out just as they should have.)

Eddie's blog showcases delightful snippets of his personal design triumphs, including thrift store and flea market finds (i.e. "treasure hunting"), before-and-after success stories, and how to create professional flower arrangements from home. He proudly declares that it's not necessary to spend buckets of money to create an elegant style. He even understands the value of white dishes (a personal obsession I am always feeding).

I could look at his before-and-after photos all day long. Especially this set, in which he transformed his kitchen light fixture and effectively changed my life:

Photos from Eddie Ross.

But it doesn't end there.

Because this man is actually nice. As in...a kind and decent human. I commented on his blog (after finding it and devouring every post he'd ever written) and even went so far as to ask a design question of my own...

...and he wrote back. Personally. Within the hour.

Let's recap: A guy who calls Martha "Martha," and is actually allowed to do so...wrote me an email. With advice. Personalised design advice, just for me and my little house.

Photo from Eddie Ross.

So of course I blew it, as I do with all new friends {it's my lifelong curse}. Being completely starstruck (because I've never gotten mail from a famous person before [I would be so pathetic in Hollywood]), I wrote him back. Like an idiot.

And he wrote me back again. A brand new email, with words different from the first!

Yes, I know it was stalker of me to write twice. It's just that I couldn't stop the visions of me and Eddie Ross, arm in arm, scouring the streets of New York for deals on the cheap. "Oh, Eddie Ross, you're such a joker," I would laugh, smiling at my new best friend who would be coming over to redecorate my brownstone apartment from top to bottom later that evening, and he'd show up with a fresh floral arrangement he'd thrown together just for me.

I know. Pathetic. I won't be bothering him anymore, because enough is enough and I know it. In fact, as soon as I sent my googly-eyed second email, I regretted bothering him twice. With his fast-paced life in NYC, I'm sure he's beyond annoyed with me by now.

Photo from Eddie Ross. Naturally.

But he's my new best friend, and I won't rest until I get a personalised invite to one of his amazing dinner parties. (Teasing, Eddie Ross. Just teasting.)

Seriously, though...I will proudly link to his blog on my sidebar, and a little piece of me will be besotted with him until the day I die.

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{Hypochondria and Me}

This is turning out to be the worst birthday week ever.

First, my sister called yesterday and told me that she had been planning on buying me Heather Bailey's Trash Ties™ for months, but now, since I wrote about them on my blog, she's not going to. Because now I'll "never believe that she was going to buy them in the first place." I tried to convince her that yes, I would believe her, but to no avail. I blew it.

I hate when that happens.

Then last night, to drown my sorrows, I ate an entire bag of Peanut Butter M&Ms™, which was a very bad idea indeed. Because not only did I throw off my record of not eating sugar (I'd made it 12 hours!!!), but it gave me a Pain.

That's right. A Pain. I've got a Pain, and nothing I have done has helped. I've tried sleeping. And staying in bed. It was still there when I woke up this wretched morning.

I thought maybe it was just acid reflux, or maybe heartburn, but it isn't anywhere near my heart.

It's right there, under the maple leaf.

What is that, anyway? Did I break a rib? Or my sternum? It only hurts when I'm fully straightened out (i.e. standing up or stretching in bed). Hunching over, or curling into the fetal position, I feel just fine.

According to this diagram, it could be anything.

Photo from here.

Which means I'm going to die. Me and The Pain, in all our misery.

No Trash Ties™, and you're going to die at 22. Happy birthday.


Sunday, September 21, 2008

{Flip My Flop}

I got tagged by HeatherPride some time ago. I never follow all the rules of tags; I only ever write them, but rarely do I pass them on. I'm the kind of kid who ruined the chain letters for everyone else. Sorry everyone. Stop reading my blog if it bothers you that much.

Maybe you already knew...

...but just in case you didn't:

Six Things Which Flip My Flop:

1. I have brushed my teeth in the shower since high school. Saves water. Plus, I like that I can let the toothpastes suds run down my chin in minty rivulets. Kind of like I'm a heathen, except I'm taking a shower so not really.

2. Poor Kyle hates it when I do this. [Not that he's ever seen it happen, because this is a family-friendly blog, and for all intents and purposes, we sleep in two separate twin beds just like Lucy and Ricky did. In fact, he only knows about it because he's reading this post right now.]

3. I wear contact lenses. They are clear, not coloured. My eyesight is so poor, they can't even make coloured lenses that would also help me see. If contact lenses were glasses, mine would resemble those little flip-out dome things (they must have a name!) kids buy for five tickets at Pistol Pete's Pizza. Or a pair of plungers. I wouldn't be able to blink.

4. I find most nursery rhymes and children's songs depressing. "I don't know why she swallowed that fly; perhaps she'll die???" How awful! I had a kamikaze fly enter my ear canal once, and it was terrifying. I can only imagine swallowing one, plus the entire zoo that came afterwards.

5. I eat dill pickles. Daily. With cheese. Cheddar, mozzarella, neufchatel, camembert...any cheese will do. I even eat dill pickles with cheese-flavoured processed snacks, like reduced fat Cheeze-its™ and cheesy rice crackers. Tonight for dinner, Poor Kyle and I had whole dill pickles, chilled, sliced and covered with nacho cheese Doritos™.

Photo from here.

6. Poor Kyle says, "You're pretty sensitive about your travels. It breaks your heart to take any kind of road trip at all--business or pleasure--and not stop to tour every little tiny detail of the area." He's right--it's true. And really, can you blame me? I love places.

And as a bonus, because it's Monday and you probably need a little pick-me-up...

7. I once pepper sprayed myself. [It was not my proudest moment.]


Thursday, September 18, 2008

{Call Me Greedy, But Say it Softly}

***Preface: This post is about birthdays. Specifically mine. I was raised in a family where birthdays were celebrated. I have come to embrace the tradition of celebrating birthdays with loved ones. I like birthday presents. Call me greedy if you want, but say it softly so I can't hear. I don't think presents have to cost any money at all. If Poor Kyle were to simply write me a long, juicy love letter, I would consider myself gifted.

Since I know that would never happen, I wrote this post.***

Every year when my birthday rolls around, I set out to be close-lipped about it. I always want to see who will remember and who will forget. By not mentioning my birthday, I can assess who really loves me and who doesn't. I'm pretty big on martyrdom, in case you haven't noticed.

Unfortunately, I can never make it all the way to my birthday without blabbing to the world, so I never get to find out who my real friends are. I may never know.

This year is no different.

My birthday is coming up next week. I'll be turning 22. [I kind of chuckle to myself when I realise that I'm turning 22, because most people I associate with are significantly older than me. Even the kids I went to school with are all turning 23 this year. I kind of have it in my head that everyone who reads this blog is older than me, and wiser to boot. So when I come to conclusions about marriage and money and life in general, I always feel like I'm the last one to know.]

Anyway, despite all my efforts not to remind Poor Kyle of my upcoming day, I have a niggling doubt in the back of my mind: "What if he actually does forget? How will I respond? This is the first birthday he's ever been faced with as my husband--what if he totally embarrasses himself?"

Not wanting to answer any of those potentially dangerous questions, I decided I'd better make sure he remembers. So for the past few weeks, I've been mentioning it.

And I'm easy to please, for sure. In fact, I've gone so far as to flat-out tell him things I would like for my birthday. None of them are expensive or out of our budget, because--though I do think birthdays should be celebrated--it's not worth breaking the bank.

Any of the following items would make me a very happy birthday person indeed:

1. The best chapstick I've ever used. I've gone through three tubes and am due for another. Highly recommended (along with Burt's Bee's Pomegranate, my second-favourite).

Image from here.

2. Heather Bailey's Trash Ties. One set of long, one set of short. I've been intrigued by these since before they became available, but they're more costly than I would spend normally on hair dohickies. As far as birthday presents go, however, they're pretty cheap.

Image from here.

3. A self-hosted blog. What a nice gift from Poor Kyle this would be. It may or may not be in the works right now. Stay tuned for more [or no] details.

4. A stipend to paint my kitchen. The purple walls are cramping my style, and I think I've finally picked a colour I like. I've got the time, I've got the all I need is the cash flow. Maybe once it's decorated how I'd like, I can finally post photos of my house and put Jami's curious mind to rest.

Twenty-two is coming soon. Let's hope he doesn't blow it.


Wednesday, September 17, 2008

{Good Things Come in Reds.}

A couple of weeks before I got married to Poor Kyle, I went to Canada for a little visit. You know, just to make sure that I really wanted to take the proverbial plunge.

While I was visiting, my husband-to-be took me to sign up for a cell phone on his account. [Some might call me a money-grubbing woman of the night. Others might say Poor Kyle was my sugar daddy. But the way I figured it, we were getting married in a few weeks, and I needed a Canadian cell phone number. It only made sense.]

It was a lovely new phone—all shiny and red, just like most everything else I buy... these twins...

...and these twins.

[Owning a pair of Steve Maddens has always been a goal of mine. The fact that my first pair were shiny, red, and on was fate. But I digress.]

Right away, I took the phone home and sat down with the manual, determined to figure out what all the buttons and cords and icons meant. I turned it on, and to my delight, realized that Poor Kyle had already left me a voicemail. (Little did I know that once we got married, his voicemails would almost immediately turn from “Hello, gorgeous—I know I just saw you five minutes ago but I just wanted to hear your voice,” to “Cuhmeal, where are you? I called twice already. Listen, I need you to bring me something for lunch—I forgot it again. Also, could you put my black hoodie in the wash today? I know you already did seven loads yesterday, but it’s my favourite hoodie. Oh. And I’ll be late for dinner—don’t wait up.” Oh, to be young again…)

Hardly being able to contain my joy at finding a new message, I pressed and held “1” to retrieve it, assuming that—along with every other cell phone I'd ever owned—voicemail was pre-programmed into the phone as speed dial #1.

It rang once, but instead of connecting me straight to the Voicemail Lady, it continued to ring a few more times. Suddenly, I heard a voice.

“Hello?” it greeted. He sounded about my age, and with a Canadian accent. He was no recording.

“Umm…hello? Is this…is this my voicemail?” I was dumbfounded. Surely it was a joke. Were Canadian voicemail systems set up with actual humans? “Is this guy sitting in a call center somewhere taking messages for me?” I wondered.

“Uhhh…pardon me?” came his equally perplexed--though very polite--reply.

Finally coming to my senses and realizing I must have simply dialed incorrectly, I apologized and hung up. I was so flustered, I didn’t even wait for him to say goodbye.

I checked my “Sent Calls” menu, and found that I’d just made a call to a number I didn’t recognize [and not just because I'd gotten a new phone number myself]. “How odd,” I thought, “I’d better try that again.”

Sure enough, the second time I tried to call my voicemail, I was met with the same human guy. Luckily, though, I [sort of] had the presence of mind to explain myself.

“I’m really sorry to keep bothering you,” I apologized. “I’m not an idiot. It’s just…I got this new cell phone today, and I’m trying to check my voicemails, but for some reason my phone thinks its phone number is you.” Even to myself, I sounded like a fool.

“Oh, sure,” he replied understandingly, as if that sort of thing happened all the time. [And as if I actually made sense.] “Well…I hope you get it figured out.” And then, in parting, “Talk to you later.”

Hanging up, I decided two things: One, that I had just made a new friend whose name I forgot to catch, and two, that Poor Kyle would know what to do. So I called him next.

“Hey, babe,” he answered.

“Hi. Hey, so a few minutes ago I saw I’d gotten a new voicemail, so I went to check it, but instead of the Voicemail Lady answering, it was a guy. And at first I thought he was my own personal assistant, but then I just realized my phone thinks its phone number is his, and now I have a new friend. He’s the guy whose number my phone stole, and we’re friends. What should I do?”

He didn’t believe me of course, until he saw it for himself later.

We still haven’t gotten the problem fixed, and it’s been a nuisance the entire time I’ve had this phone. I can’t text Google™, for one. Rather, I can text Google™, but Google™ thinks my cell phone is the other guy’s number, so Google™ replies to him. It took me nine months to figure out why Google™ never texts me back; I can only imagine how strange it’s been for my friend to receive random texts from Google™ these past nine months. Things like “Definition of onomatopoeia,” and “Linens ‘N Things. 1235 S. Arizona Ave. Mesa, AZ 85679 (602) 898-1234.”

Sometimes when I’m in a hurry and try to check my messages quickly, I forget my broken speed dial. When that happens, and my friend answers, I always chuckle. “Oh, hi. It’s me again—that girl whose phone is struggling with an identity crisis. Sorry to bother you.”

“Oh, no bother,” he assures, the smile in his voice transmitting itself over the telephone signal. “Talk to you later.”

I really like my nice friend--it's almost like we're pen pals, but without the pens. Maybe someday I'll get to meet him.

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Monday, September 15, 2008

And Then I Was Faced With My Day of Reckoning.

We always knew this day would come.

It was inevitable, I suppose.
Poor Kyle bought a house (our current little love shack) back in September of 2006. Now, two years later, the cable company has finally figured out that the past owners have moved.

And just like that, I’m cut off. Life, I tell ya…it can turn on a dime.

Was it dishonest of us? Well…it’s kind of a gray area along the Spectrum of Morality. The real dishonesty was that the previous owners didn’t call to have it disconnected. Scoundrels, all of them. The fact that neither Poor Kyle nor I ever had time in our busy lives to remedy a mistake we didn’t even make…that’s a sin of omission, at worst.

At any rate, there’s a difference between accepting blessings (free cable was undeniably a blessing [while it lasted, anyway.]), and actually pirating those blessings for oneself. And I’ve never made much of a pirate.


Someday, I will be rich enough to afford cable of my own accord. That will be a very joyful day indeed.

But until then…
Goodbye Mike Holmes from Holmes on Homes. I almost loved you.

Photo from here.

Goodbye So You Think You Can Dance Canada—your first episode was a delight. If these Canadians know what's good for them, I'm sure you’ll be a big hit.
Goodbye Divine Design with Candace Olsen, and Take This House and Sell It with Lisa LaPorter, and Design Inc. with that Sarah person. Sarah person, I wish I could see how your new house and baby’s nursery turns out. Goodbye Location, Location, Location, and Relocation, Relocation—two shows that each have the same delightful British hosts and are essentially exactly the same. I will never know the difference between you two, but I will always remember that we had a good thing going.

Photo from here.

And now, with our Wii out for “servicing,” I’m left to my own pathetic devices. Our DVD collection is rather scarce—well, maybe not scarce, but it’s scarcely decent. I can only take so much of Dumb and Dumber, Wayne’s World, and Tommy Boy before I decide a torture chamber is a better alternative.

Anyone read any good books lately?

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Thursday, September 11, 2008

Birth Control and What I'd Do if it Ever Failed Me.

I believe that children should come into this world being highly anticipated by their parents. Of course, accidents can happen, and who am I to judge? No one. I am, however, a girl who knows that she is not--in any way, shape or form--ready to be a mother. If I were to get pregnant unexpectedly right now, I would feel so sorry for my unborn fetus, because I do not think I could be joyful and excited to birth it. (To BIRTH it. BIRTH. Sounds wretched.)

Someday I will be ready to have children, and when that day comes, I will be as hopeful and expectant as any mother likely is. I will nest. I will read "What to Expect When You're Expecting" (a title which should be underlined but Blogger won't let me). I will go to LaMaze and La Leche League and LaMommy-and-Me prep classes. When I am ready.

But for now, I take very great care not to let any of my defenseless little eggs get fertlised. That's how we roll, the eggs and me.

So with no further ado...

Q [from Anonymous]: So what ARE your birth control plans?

A [from me]: I am taking a prescription birth control pill called Yasmin. I like it, second only to the prescription I was on back in the states [it was a similar pill called Yaz, but the "off" pills were only three in number. Which meant the "off" days were three or fewer. Which was a marvelous thing indeed]. But they don't make Yaz in Canada--just Yasmin. The only difference is that the white pills--or the "off" days--are an entire seven. Which is four more than three. Which is the kind of math that can get your head chewed off if you bring it up during The Week of the White Pills.

Poor Kyle--he knows to beware of the Week of the White Pills. Poor, poor Kyle.

I won't complain, though, because my meds up here cost me $10.00 for a three month supply, whereas in Arizona I was paying upwards of $50.00 each month. But that was my fault because I dropped out of college and could no longer qualify for student insurance. I'm a black sheep like that.

Anyway, Yasmin is a nice little drug that I gleefully pump into my body every night before bed. I did all the research my little brain could tolerate, and I decided the pill was the choice for me. I might have preferred the Depo Provera shot, if not for the fact that I would rather get pregnant than get shots--and that's saying a lot. And please...don't even get me started on those nasty things that stay up in people's bodies for months on end. I...cannot...fathom. Ever. Never ever ever.

But to each her own.

Q [from Camille Elise]: Hmm...If you ever have kids, how many do you want? And would you ever consider having them at home, in say, a bathtub?

A [from me]: Four. And if there is any way I can figure out to have one sets of quadruplets or two sets of twins, I would absolutely take it. The way I figure it, I can completely hole myself inside my house for four years until at least one of my kids started school--and every year following would just get better. Then again, what do I know? My older sister, a new parent herself, tells me that this is the stupidest idea she's ever heard. And she's pretty clever, so I am probably wrong.

I would never have my children in a bathtub. I might consider having one in an Aqua Doula™, though--it's a child birthing spa! Ooh, la la!

But I intend to have at least my first child (assuming I can't get all four at once, because I could never be so lucky) at the local hospital, such as it is. Because, as I believe with my contraceptives, if the drugs are there, I want them.

If, however, my first birthing (ugh. BIRTHING. Sounds right awful) experience is negative, I would consider trying a home birth. The smart way. The Cristin way [i.e., with a licensed, experienced midwife there as guidance and a life-preserver]. When I read her post about her experience with a home birth, I remember thinking, "Wow. That really does sound nice. Being able to sleep in my own bed just a little while after having a kid? Good deal."

But who wants to think about birth plans now? Not me. I'm only sayin' 'cause you asked.

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Wednesday, September 10, 2008

{I Put the Ab in Abnormal.}

This is the last day of my laying low-ness. Tomorrow I'll be back in the proverbial saddle, blogging five days a week again. Tomorrow my big sister--and all her entertaining distractions--will be gone, along with my sweet-face baby nephew.

Life will resume as normal.

Except I kind of forgot what "normal" is for me.

It seems this entire summer, the only thing that's stayed constant is that I haven't.

Take jogging. All winter, my excuse for not exercising was because of all the snow and ice outside my warm cozy house. Exercising in the winter gives me the whooping cough. But the coming of summer didn't really do anything for me. At all. I am no more in shape now than last year. Probably worse, actually.

I've been bouncing around the continent from week to week, never in the same place: Oregon, Washington, Utah, Idaho, Arizona, British Columbia. I think over 50% of this summer has been spent not here.

I even tried getting into the habit of making my bed every day, but there's nothing consistent there. Sometimes Poor Kyle stays in bed after a long run to Oregon and back, and by the time he's up, I'm ready to sleep again. My bed can go unmade for days at a time, despite my good intentions.

Even changing it from this... this...
...didn't provide the motivation I need.

So how am I supposed to know my routine, if the constant in my life is change? I have no routine. My days are lived based on my current whims.

I guess it's back to that, then.

I know it's Thursday and I'm supposed to answer questions a question, but I'm going to do it tomorrow. Guaranteed it will be good [a nice discussion of birth control is in order, I believe], but it's September 11th today. I wanted to write something different.

On this day in 2001, I was a shiny new Sophomore in high school, and America seemed to be changing forever. Even though I did not have direct relatives or friends in New York, my almost-fifteen year-old self could sense that times were strange.
Times did change, and have changed continually since that day. It seems for me, and all the world, the only constant change.

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Sunday, September 7, 2008

What's in a Name? A Million Different Selves.

I don't really have a nickname.

When I was in 6th grade (grade 6, Canadians!), I decided "Camille" was a nasty name, and I'd much prefer to be called "Cammie." I got my entire class in on it--teacher and all--and was quite sure that my future as "Cammie" was bright and empowering.

Me captured in my element, chopping down a Christmas tree when I was 12, during the height of my "Cammie" self.

Until I got to 7th grade and met a whole slew of Cammie/Cammy/Kami girls. Suddenly, my new personality--in its entirety--seemed less like me and more like everybody else. I had to go back to Camille.

But shortening "Camille" is a difficult task--"Cam" is rather masculine, and I'd already ruled out the "Cammie" bit. "Mi" sounded too much like something from Monty Python and the Holy Grail, and "Mille" was out of the question.

But I can't help the fact that most everyone in my family calls me "Millie." Not just that; it's "Millie," "Millie Vanilli," and--in my sister's case--simply "Mill."

For aunts and uncles, my parents and grandparents, this is perfectly normal. But if anybody else--friends, in-laws, anonymous commenters--called me "Millie..." It is not pretty. The first boyfriend I ever had tried to call me "Millie" on more than one occasion, which effectively ruined his chance with me, because it made me feel like I was dating an uncle. And who wants to marry their uncle? (Okay, I did want to marry one uncle once upon a time, but I was really little then--I haven't wanted to marry him since I was 5 or 6.)

So don't call me "Millie," or any version of the name. I would have to then stop blogging so as not to ruin my relationship with any of you non-relatives.

Oh. And also? Evidently there is more than one way to pronounce my name. I've always called myself "Camille" as in "cuh*mill." It wasn't until I was 18 or 19 that I realised some people pronounce it "cuh*meal." Yeah. And I never knew, until I moved to Canada and people started asking me if I prefered Cuhmill or Cuhmeal, and I was like, "Oh, I have that option? Cool." I stuck with Cuhmill.

So if you ever meet me...whatever. Like anyone cares about this. I don't even care. Someone, please...give me something to write about. I'm grasping at straws here.

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Thursday, September 4, 2008

I Wonder How Many Readers I'll Estrange in Writing This Post?

Sorry I've been on the down-low lately.

My sister is here to visit me. She's brought along her husband (good guy) and child (even better). We've been having more fun than any family should be allowed to have. I won't post pictures quite yet, because we haven't taken one, or any. But I will--I promise.

Suffice it to say that I may or may not be posting much for the next few days. But I'll be back--I always come back.

Oh, and I might as well answer a question, since I'm here and all...

Question, From RatalieNose [one of my most favourite blog readers]: Camille, if you were still living in the U.S. which presidential candidate would you be voting for?

Picture from here.

Answer, from Me: Barack Obama. And I am still voting, because I'm an American citizen even if I've moved far far away. I'm allowed.

[Now all of you can debate in the comment section as to whether or not I'm telling the truth. Remember I come from Mesa, Arizona and I also have a penchant for sh*t disturbing.]

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