Friday, September 28, 2012

Stranded in Barcelona (Not!)

Well, it's been an interesting Friday. After teaching a section of writing 093, I visited the staff lounge on the third floor, and I opened my email to check my messages. Apparently, Steve and I are stranded in Barcelona and we needed $2,200 for our safe return.

My email was hacked. This fictitious tale of woe was sent through the interwebs by a hack who has nothing better to do, and this person is probably dwelling in someone's basement while clogging up innocent people's cyber accounts. Great. Every single person in my email account and on my facebook page received this email. And although it was out of my control, I am sorry.

Steve and I received phone calls, emails, and facebook messages from concerned friends and family. Although annoying and irritating, it was touching to hear from people I haven't heard from in a long time. In addition, Steve and I are enjoying the hilarious facebook postings on my wall. Perhaps we need to do something fun with it. Someone suggested that we photoshop a photo of us...in Barcelona. Hmmm.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Autumn Solstice

Fall is here. I felt it in my bones this week. And I really like it. The Lady Cats are enjoying the cooler weather, too. They gallop around the house and curl up together for mid-afternoon naps. Ah, the life of a Lady Cat.
Today I grabbed my digital camera, sauntered outside, and took a long walk on the Riverwalk. Isn’t it interesting how vibrant the flowers and foliage are when the sky is grey? Blue skies are beautiful with flowers as well, but it’s the intensity of grey that I take note of.

This week I started an additional gig. I teach three classes (two sections of reading 083 and one section of writing 093) at Ivy Tech Community College on top of teaching one night course at BMC. I would like to keep the jobs, plus sideline jewelry shows, book promotions, and programs, going as long as possible, as long as it doesn’t interfere with the elective course (D511) I’m taking this fall. There is fall break at BMC next week, so I can catch my breath, tweak the syllabus and focus more on the new gig before returning to both jobs after next week. Hopefully this week I can post more blogs and continue the novel. It’s almost 37,000 words now.

Steve is taking a well-deserved autumn break from his online teaching gig, and he is working hard at Schurz. (He’ll start teaching again next week.) Steve has also picked up writing again, and I’m happy to see that he is pursuing it more. He is an excellent writer; he needs a nudge to get more of his work published. (But that is ultimately his decision, of course.)

Cheers to a beautiful week! I hope yours is autumnal and beautiful.


Sunday, September 16, 2012

Bachelorette Party

Remnants of feathers from the boas adorned the sidewalk in front of the house, and the back deck, much like autumn leaves. The feathers are most likely scattered down the road we sauntered to the local bar/dance venue. We left a plethora of feathers on the dance floor. Rewind to about 4:00 p.m. The venue was fake housed (Steve, I couldn't have pulled it off without you--thank you ever so much!!!) and the ladies started to arrive to decorate. The weather cooperated beautifully, so we decided to take the soiree on the deck under the Ash tree. Pink and yellow mums adored the front and back yard. There were pink streamers, balloons, a sign with Bachelorette tied to branches, fancy glasses, straws, beads,a tablecloth, and candles. It was so much fun. We also had glitter to adorn the eyes and face. The seven of us dined on a lovely salad and a decadent lasagna. We drank spirits and wine. We laughed and played bachelorette games. Two small fires (one in the oven and one on the deck) were quickly snuffed out. All of the cats were accounted for. After the evening turned into night, we secured the house and sauntered over to a local bar/dance place. It was crowded after awhile and unfortunately, a bit smoky. (I will be pleased when all places are smoke-free.) We danced for a very long time in our boas and beads. We stayed until after midnight, and when the locals started to do the flip and grind dance moves, it was time for the true grown-ups to abscond. So we trekked home, chatting and laughing, leaving our feathers behind. A police officer slowly drove behind us to make sure we were safe (or not publicly intoxicated, which we weren't.) We made it home and hung out for awhile afterwards. Three guests stayed over and took advantage of the couches on the front porch (enclosed) and in the living room. (Moshi the cat decided to curl up with the bride-to-be on the porch.) The next morning, we met up with some of the guys and meandered out for breakfast. Now I am here writing and looking at the feathers scattered on the back deck. I don't sweep them up right away. They are colorful reminders of a fantastic evening.

Interesting Week

Last week was a long, strange trip. It started out well, as I helped a friend with rearranging furniture at her home. It made for a fun and festive afternoon. Monday was scary, but all's well, so enough of that nonsense. Wednesday and Friday I trained for classes at Ivy Tech Community College. In addition to the occasional monthly class I teach three nights a week, I will be teaching three courses from September 17-December 15. I'm teaching two reading courses and a writing course. I'm very excited and a litte apprehensive. I want to be able to do both successfully and really help people achieve in college. I've wanted to teach college since I was 18, so I am living my dream. :) Steve is also teaching two courses online on top of his daytime gig, so we're both following a similiar path. On Friday, I went to friend's house for film night, and there was a cyanide scare in Mishawaka. A fire started in an empty warehouse and noxious fumes permeated the area. Steve called my friend A., and caught me as I was walking out the door. Steve's folks watched it on the news and they alerted Steve. Of course, I left my cell phone on the porch, so Steve contacted my friend. So, he ended up staying the night at his folk's house and I stayed with my friends. Thank you, M. and K. for being awesome hosts! Saturday, I co-hosted a bachelorette party. But that's another blog post. :)

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Gratitude

Benign is a beautiful world. Steve and I were so frightened yesterday. Failing a mammogram was a nerve-wracking,frightening experience. Thanks to the comfort of family and friends, we managed through it, and we are grateful for the support. Thank you. <3

Sunday, September 09, 2012

Fun Weekend

Steve and I enjoyed a beautiful September weekend out with friends. Friday night we dined at Sunny's Korean Restaurant and then ventured out to That Place to sing karaoke and continue the party. It was a hilarious time. I had fun doing and singing "The Safety Dance" in front of friends and strangers. Who cares? Life is short and no one threw tomatoes. Saturday night Steve and I attended a friend's outdoor garden party. It was a lot of fun. On Sunday, Steve and I both spent the day with friends. Keeping busy this weekend was the plan, because there was no way I was going to ruin a weekend ruminating about Monday. I washed the dishes and swept upstairs to burn off some of this nervous energy. I am thinking positively: the mamm slam will turn out fine and benign and we can go on with our lives. Besides, I don't have time for this nonsense. I'm in graduate school and taking on another teaching gig (three classes) in a couple of weeks, celebrating a wedding with friends, and going to a conference in October. I have no time for disruptions of the peaceful writerly life I am trying to lead.

Thursday, September 06, 2012

Interesting Wednesday

Yesterday was one of those character-building days. I didn't sleep well last night.It's late summmer in Indiana--congestion is to be expected. I had to cancel coffee with J. because I couldn't catch my breath. It had been a very long time since I had an asthma attack, so it was rather disconcerting. I called Steve and my allergist, and the South Bend clinic worked me in and gave me a breathing treament, then sent us home. That alone was surreal and strange. (Thank you, Steve, for taking me.I was too winded to drive.) Later that day, I answer the telephone and get the dreaded call from the doctor's office. "We need for you to come in for a diagnostic test and we scheduled you for Monday." Okay, then. That has never happened before.I almost cancaled going to class last night, but I'm enjoying it, and as a graduate student, I really need to attend. Steve nudged me to attend and it was a good distraction. Just in case I forgot(!), I also receive the follow-up letter in mail. (It's a cross-over in the mail. Grateful they are prompt.) "Thank you for your recent visit to our facility. There is an area on your Digital bilateral mammogram that requires further evaluation. I recommend that you return for special views." Special views? Does that mean it will image in 3D or something? (Bad joke, I know.) "An ultrasound may be required." Lovely. Why not skip the second mammogram and go straight for the ultrasound? Please spare another round of mamm-slamm! It's strange enough to listen to someone on the telephone talking about further testing, but it's disconcerting to open the mail and read it in print, which brings me to the point that the written word continues to be powerful. It could be nothing--or it could be something. Waiting is no fun: at least I am able to get in on Monday afternoon to find out what's going on. So, I have tried not to freak out, surf on the web to self-diagnose (dangerous!), and think the worst. But I am preparing myself and I've decided not to keep quiet about it, because I've already had two women who are now going to pursue mammograms.Therefore, this scare is worth it if another woman is saved. Will you keep you posted. Thanks for reading. xoxo

Monday, September 03, 2012

Wildflowers from the Garden

Here are some happy flowers from our wildflower garden. Enjoy!

Labor Day Sunday Poem

Sunday, Labor Day Weekend, September 2, 2012 The forecast clouds disappeared, and the sky appeared (and brought humidity) blue sky blue reflected on the waves and in the wake of boats on the private Michigan lake, where I grew up in two residences on the same lake over thirty-six years ago. Thirty-six years. And as I lean back in a white chair with cushions and held my knees up to my chest, I felt this place for the first time, I felt displaced for the first time as we no longer have our physical space. And the lake seemed to respond to my sorrow as we listened to the man playing "Taps" with a bugle on the lake into my sentiment and my heart sank in tandem with the sunset. And I gazed up at the afterglow of a recent full moon on the lake with its reflection on the water through blurred vision, a single tear cascading down my left cheek.

Saturday, September 01, 2012

August Blue Moon September

When the clouds cleared late last night, I ventured outside our front porch and looked up at the full moon. Not only was the moon full, but it had a bluish hue. The song Blue Moon coursed through my blue veins, so I wrote a haiku celebrating the moon and the changing of the months. Cloudy August night full blue midnight moonglow-- clear September morning. I liked how the weather was cloudy on August 31, and then it was clear enough for the moon to appear after midnight on September 1. (I captured a few photos, so I'll post them shortly.)

November Musings and Happy Early Thanksgiving

Has it been two months already? Happy autumn! In about a month, winter will be here. It's starting to feel like it outside. Enough ab...