One year ago...

Last year at this time, I was sitting on a beach, sipping a Dirty Monkey, and enjoying the last full day of a week-long vacation in Playa del Carmen, Mexico.

Two years ago, I was working at the pool, getting ready to start a new job in a new school district in the fall.

Three years ago, I was working on my application to meet the July 2 deadline for a job as an Aquatics Coordinator in Breckenridge, CO.

Five years ago, I was finishing my practicum for a master's degree in gifted education.

Ten years ago, I had just graduated from high school and was planning on leaving for the Air Force in September to be a crytologic linguist.

Today, I am sitting on the couch, watching Sparky snoozing in his swing. The closest thing to a vacation in the near future is a road trip in the new mini-van to my cousin's wedding in Connecticut this September. I am currently unemployed and working on yet another master's degree.

This is not a lament. Just an observation of the way that life meanders. I wonder where I'll end up in another ten years.



So, for the second time in two weeks, I've been to a surprise party. One for my friend Sarah's 30th birthday bash; today to Karen's 60th.

Both times, I've missed the "SURPRISE" part of the party.

Last time, I was "rolling the dice," when Sarah arrived at her party and was so shocked and happy that she started crying. ("Rolling the dice" is our euphemism for using one of these, if you care to know.) Today, I was inside dealing with a fussy Sparky, who seemed to be unhappy about being outside in the hot weather, when Karen realized the party was not for her granddaughter but actually for her.

Oh, well... All in the name of motherhood, right?


An Unexpected Snack

As I unloaded the groceries the other day, I came upon an item that was individually wrapped in a small plastic grocery bag. I racked my brain, trying to determine what it is that I had bought that would warrant its own individual bag...

"Nothing breakable," I thought. "Nothing leaky, sticky, or poisonous."

I opened the bag to find a small cardboard tray from the meat section of the store carrying some type of fried food. This was definitely something that got put into my cart by mistake. Carefully, I turned over the item to see the UPC code sticker on the bottom:


Bonus! The checker must've forgotten to put these tasty morsels in the cart of the person who checked out before me (who bore an uncanny resemblance to Methuselah) and then put it into my bags instead. They were even still warm from the heat lamp they'd most likely been sitting under for approximately 5 to 7 days! Luckeeee...

I wasn't going to drive back to the store for $1.50-worth of chicken innards, so I asked Dave if he wanted one. He looked at them, considering, and tentatively tried to take a bite of one of the fried rubber pucks. He gave up and put it back in the tray.

I went ahead and promptly brought them out into the garage and threw them in the trash.


Numb what?!?

From the 2008 National Scripps Spelling Bee... Go ahead and watch it! You'll be happy that you did.


Life is good...

Hard to believe that it has been over a month since I last blogged. I can't believe that the entire month of May has gone by and I haven't posted a single thing. Well, life has been busy, to say the least. Sorry for the inconsistency.

That's for those of you who are keeping score. I know you're out there.

How life has changed since that last post. The biggest change since then is that Dave and I have decided that I will not go back to teaching next year. Instead, I will stay home with Sparky during the days and attend classes at UMSL towards my master's in Counseling and Family Therapy during the evenings. When it came down to the few days I had to go back to work this school year, I just knew that I didn't want to go. So, we sat down and looked at our budget:

If you take the cost of daycare
+ Gas for me to drive to & from work
+ The money we'd save by selling my car
+ A few other ways to save here and there
= Breaking even.

It ended up being way more worth it for me to stay home and take care of our son instead of working full time.

However, it ended up being a rather bittersweet decision. As thrilled as I am at the prospect of being able to stay home with Sparky and accelerate my degree program, I was very sad to leave my job. The teaching position that I've held for the last two years has been the most fulfilling job that I've ever had. In addition to truly loving what I teach, I've had more fun with my co-workers than any other teaching position that I've ever held. They are truly dedicated to their jobs and I look up to each and every one of them as people who go the extra mile for their students. Our daily lunch conversations are freakin' hilarious and I will miss them. Luckily, I will have the opportunity to substitute teach and I know that I will make the effort to stay in touch with all of them. I sincerely hope that we don't lose touch.

It is weird to be on "summer vacation" while knowing that I don't have to go back to work this fall. Last summer was the first summer that I haven't worked full time at the pools as a lifeguard or manager since I was 16. This summer I'm not even helping to fill in.

If you would've told me two years ago that I would be taking time off working to stay home with a baby, I would've looked at you like you were crazy. And while I have loved every minute of my life up until this point, I wouldn't change a single thing.

As the title of this post says... Life is good. :o)

Edit: I just noticed that I ended my last post with the same three words. I guess it must be true.