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Friday, December 31, 2010

365 Words and a Big Committment

I've wanted to do a 365 Project for a while and felt sad when I missed the boat starting one the beginning of last year.  All year long I swore that I would take on my own 365 Project at the start of this next coming year.  aka. tomorrow.  As this year crept to an end I thought for weeks about what my possible theme could be.  It isn't an easy decision.  Too much randomness would lead to chaos and lack of direction.  A too confining a theme would peter out on creativity well before I reached my goal.  I had to think of something with balance, and then the idea came to me.


Random words.  

And a photo a day inspire by each random word.

You must check out my 365 Project Blog to see more and bookmark or follow it!

And be sure to have a safe and happy New Years!!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

How I Lost Over Ten Pounds

I figured with the New Year coming and new resolutions on the doorstep for many people that this would be very fitting to talk about!

If you've been reading my blog for a while or seen photos of me then you're probably thinking "You don't need to lose weight!" when you read my post title, but that's not true.  A couple of months ago I weighed myself for the first time in half a year.  For the first time ever the scale weight had to top from the 100 bar to the 150 bar.  I weighed in at 151lbs.  It was the heaviest I have ever weighed in my entire life and I decided to do something about it.

At 5 feet and 3 inches tall weighing over 150lbs put me firmly in the overweight category according to my BMI.  Now, I didn't feel overweight, but I had noticed that I had those jeans that were always "a little too tight".  I always blamed it on the wash, tightening up the denim.  (seriously, I can't be the only one who has made that excuse, can I?).  Slowly I was watching myself add on a few pounds each year.  Where had my 135lb college physique gone in just four years? 

Finally, I decided that I needed to stop making excuses and break the pattern, but how?  I already exercised, sometimes more days than not.  Running, aerobics, elliptical, circuit training, I was doing it all and still adding on the pounds.  Then a friend told me about an app for her iPhone that she used to help her fit into a size smaller wedding dress.  My Fitness Pal.

My Fitness Pal is an app and a website, so you don't need an iPhone (or any other smart phone).  It's also FREE.  In simple terms it is a calorie counter, but what it really does is all the work for you.  Using it is so easy.  Here is what you do...
  1. You input your current age, height, weight.
  2. Input your average daily activity level (I was realistic and put light)
  3. Input your profession (so it knows how active you are at work)
  4. Estimate how many days a week you work out.
  5. Pick a goal weight.  
  6. Decide how much weight you'd like to lose a week (2lb a week maximum)
Just like that the program will calculate just how many calories you should eat in a day to reach your goal.

This is not my iPhone's screen shot, but rather from the My Fitness Pal Website.

Weighing 151 pounds I picked 130 as my goal weight, a weight I hadn't seen since my freshman year in college.  After inputting that and all my other information the program told me that at the rate I wanted to lose weight (2lbs a week) I could only eat 1200 calories a day.  That's it, a measly 1200 calories!   It wasn't going to be easy to stick to...

Initially I had no idea how many calories on a given day I was eating and thought that I couldn't be that far off.  Boy, was I wrong.  The first day using the program I just recorded foods that I normally ate and didn't try to stick within the caloric range the program provided.  Turns out I ate over 3,000 calories in one day.  No wonder I was slowly packing on pounds, even after exercising!

It amazed me how many calories were in certain foods and just how small a serving size of Cheetos really is.  Eventually I learned how to optimize my few calories.  The program has an enormous food bank of over a hundred thousand different foods, ingredients, and dishes ranging from home made to chain restaurants.  All you have to do is type in what you are eating, the program will display it, and then you add it to your daily food diary.  I've never had anything I've eaten not be in the database. 

Automatically your calories are subtracted for the foods you eat or added for the ones burned doing exercise. Even different types of exercises are stored in the database.  Go for a jog?  Just type it in and how long it was and the total calories burned are recorded and then added to your total daily allowance. Heck, most weeks I have been too busy to do any significant form of exercise, but still adhering to the caloric limit I was able to continue to lose weight.

My pixel heights are the same in both of these merged photos.

Not only is this program so simple, but it really does work.  Three months later I am over ten pounds lighter!  (twelve to be exact...)  I'm using my third, almost forth, notch on my belt instead of the first.  My pants that used to be "a little too tight" are now extremely comfortable (and I dare say almost a little big).  I feel confident, comfortable, and healthy.  People are also finally coming up to me a noticing that I've lost weight without me striking up a conversation.  That's the best part.  Unsolicited compliments.

My Fitness Pal App                                    My Fitness Pal Website

So consider this website/app when you are thinking about your New Year's Resolution (because I know some of you already are).  I have not been paid or asked by any representative of this program to write about it.  Rather, I just wanted to share my success in losing weight and feeling better about myself and pass it on to you!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Almost Snowed In

A blizzard in a cabin in the woods is one thing, if not expected or normal, but a blizzard in the middle of town when you are living the suburban life is something else entirely... If not horrible.

Fourteen inches of snow. That's the best I can gather after taking a dozen measurements around my windblown yard. That's more than enough, combined with 40mph winds, to bring civilzation to it's knees. Funny thing is that the more is snowed way up in our cabin the more we did. Can't drive? Just take the snowmobile. Don't have power? Just throw another log on the wood stove. That simplicity and carefreeness doesn't exist down here in "the big city".

I drove through all seven levels of he'll this morning on my way home from work. I sat the entire night alone and oblivious to the swirling white wonderland that had befallen upon Vermont during my night shift. When countless employees began calling at 5:30 I'm the morning saying they couldn't even make it out of their driveway I began to wonder if I would even be able to leave work. It wasn't the weather holding me captive, but the lack of shift relief.

Finallly, beyond fashionably late, the day shift nurses arrived wind blown and half frozen, recounting tails of horror from their commute. Naturally I brazenly put my knitted hat on and headed out to my car. What a day to neglect to wear a coat.

My normal 25 minute drive was extended to an hour. Miles of tortuous driving later I pulled into my unplowed driveway. I stuffed my car into the snow and that's where I left it. The wind and snow continued to fall and blow, but I had made it to the warm serenity of my living room.

And then I preceded to sleep the entire rest of the day.

The night shift will do that to you.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Ahead of the Storm

Its always great to see my family and for some reason its always just as great to return home after a whirlwind few days spent conversing, baking, wrapping, and reminiscing.  This year, for the second time since I moved away from home to go to college, we had to leave and return to Vermont early thanks to an impressive impending snow storm.  We had no desire to drive up the east coast in blowing snow so we had to get ahead of this guy...

Nothing ruins Christmas like a Nor'easter.  Just ask the thousands of people stranded at airports.  And as I pointed out to Shawn yesterday, this is why we don't fly when we visit my parents.  Any other time I'd love a storm like this, but when it cuts into my Christmastime I get a little miffed. 

So instead of the intended four days in Maryland I spent three.  One less day of Christmas cookies, Wii games with the family, and time spent wandering the Delmarva with my camera.  Only one day on the beaches of the Chesapeake is not enough, but fortunately the one day I picked produced a wonderful sunset.

Its moments like that, standing on the beach watching the sun sink below as far as my eye can see that I feel a part of the Earth.  My family traces back to the Eastern Shore of Maryland for four hundred years and its moments like these that make me feel connected to them, the past, and the present all at once.  More than anything it makes me feel like I am home. The best moments of my Christmas were the moments spent on this beach.  No presents, no big, lit-up tree, just the softness of the water, brightness of the sky, and the freedom of having it all to myself on Christmas Eve.

Now, I have been torn away from that scene and that state.  I'm back in Vermont amidst blowing snow and unplowed roads.  Its uncanny how quickly things change, but the holidays still aren't over for me.  There is one more 'Christmas' to be had, at my in-laws tomorrow, after the storm. 

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Twas the Days Before Christmas

Our tree is now decorated and proudly on display
With ornaments hung up high and out of the way
While he cat is snuggled all underneath the bows
Peacefully resting, at least for now

In a matter of days it will all be on the floor
Shattered in pieces and pretty no more
Our little kitty takes all the decorations from sight
Leaving behind only the strands of lights

While each morning we sweep and put the tree back together
The cat grins at us thinking he is ever so clever
However the dog seems completely preoccupied
His unwavering eyes are glued to the outside

He's guarding the tree with unwavering fervor
Such a patient and steadfast, faithful observer
But throughout the day not a visitor does pass
As we wrap gifts and place them under the tree at last

Merry Christmas to All and to All a Great Week!

I am in Maryland for the rest of the week.  Its going to be a flurry of a few days spent with family, friends, and my camera.  There will be lots of photo taking of the flat farm-filled landscape I love and miss, too.  May your holiday be filled with love, food, and everything you asked Santa for. See you after all the festive hub-bub!

Oh, and don't forget, there is still a week to enter December's photo contest!  

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

A Different Kind of Christmas Shopping

I think Christmas shopping should be fun.  Seriously!  It shouldn't be just commercials, crowds, and stores full of highly advertised gifts where you wait in line for the same amount of time you spent shopping just to overpay for something they'd probably rather have gotten a gift card for.  No wonder people get stressed and crazy during the holiday season.  They're doing it wrong. 

The other day Liz and I spent much of the afternoon wandering around the most eclectic place imaginable, the Quechee Antique Mall.  Its both antique store and flea market of sorts.  Inside is literally anything and everything, including this shelf full of creepy Santas.  Rows upon rows of randomness greets you at the entrance.  You go in not having a clue what to get or even what is in there and come out with an armful of the most genuine and creative gifts ever.  Now that is how you Christmas shop.

There was everything from vintage toys and oil cans to comic books and cooking pans crammed in every nook and cranny.  Hardly a sole was there and we spent our time playing with different items, oohing over prized antiques, laughing at the utterly junk, and wondering what some unusual objects even were. 

Need fencing equipment?  Yup, that's there.  A lamp made out of a trumpet?  Oh yeah, that's there too.  What about an old railroad signal lantern?  Of course!  I could go on and on about the randomness found inside...

...including a stash of old cameras!  

A few hours later we walked out of there with our Christmas shopping finished and genuine gifts in hand.  It sure beats the heck out of fighting for a parking spot and standing in line at Best Buy.   Hopefully you find a way to nix the stress of the holidays and enjoy your gift getting like we did!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Its Not a Lunar Eclipse, But...

Everywhere last night and today has been talking about the Lunar Eclipse.  The rare, once in a lifetime, occurrence of the eclipse on the Winter Solstice was all over the news, radio, and amongst everyone's conversation.  My Facebook wall was abuzz with updates and photos of everyone's experience enjoying the phenomenon.  However, here in Vermont it was cloudy.

Total overcast all night long.

I kept sneaking outside all night long to glance at the sky.  The only thing that changed was the wind.  It grew stronger while the clouds seemed thicker.  There would be no Eclipse for us Vermonters to enjoy.  So, instead of posting a spectacular photo of the phases of the eclipse I'll share with you a more Earthly scene....

My sister and I have been doing a lot of driving around and photographing.  Since I am new to this part of the state and she isn't even from here and visits just once a year we are both like tourists, aimlessly driving around the back roads, getting lost, and photographing everything along the way.  Its been great having someone to handle the map for me and share the enthusiasm for my random treks.  We also both seem to wear the most inappropriate footwear imaginable for such adventures.  Sneakers made of mesh and clogs are not meant for climbing hills covered in snow and ice.  Ah, sisters. 

What's not pictured in this photo is the unhappy UPS man who was behind me since I stopped my car in the middle of the road to take this photo.  As far out in the middle of nowhere as we were I figured there would be no traffic, but I forgot that its almost Christmas and UPS is everywhere (and cranky).

In the end I may not have seen the Eclipse, but I think I am okay with that. 

Monday, December 20, 2010

The Power of Facebook

This is an example of the power of Facebook.  While many are against it, cry invasion or privacy, or simply use it to play mindless games, what many don't realize is that it is a testimony of our lives.  Our feelings, words, and experiences chronicled.  All of our interactions with friends, family, and coworkers interconnected in a way that displays just who we are as people.

Nothing depicts the strength and longevity of every status update, like, and comment more than this story depicted in the Washington Post "A Mother's Joy and Family's Sorrow". (story will pop up in a new window/tab).  I garuntee by the end you will be needing to dry your eyes and have a new appreciation for your status updates.

Myself, I am a huge fan of Facebook.  Not only am I far from family and friends both in Vermont and my home state of Maryland and use it as a mean to communicate with them, I just thoroughly enjoy interacting with everyone on there.  I don't view it as an invasion of privacy, but rather a tool of connectedness. Where else can I instantly share with scores of people something funny that just happened, an accomplishment, or photo?  Its an incredible innovation that we are just barely beginning to comprehend.  The significance will be apparent generations from now when our children and grandchildren have a comprehension of just how much we like Bon Jovi lyrics, the Red Sox, or spent our time procrastinating.

We are journaling our lives in a more societal way than ever before!  I say embrace it and all that Facebook.  Maybe one day what you put as your status will be something significant, or just an important puzzle piece of who you really are. 

What do you think?  
Is Facebook really such an important societal tool as the article depicts or is that a blown up misconstrued interpretation of a commercialized social nightmare?

Sunday, December 19, 2010

The Miserable can be an Inspiration

I hate the airport. Honestly, I hate anything about flying. Its not that I am afraid, not in the least. What it is is that I thoroughly hate the experience. The security, the degrading undressing, and the uncomfortable seating. No Thank You.  But, I did realize, thanks to the airport, just how good things really are.  For me anyway... not this poor guy.

Meet Mr. TSA. 

He was slumped over his podium vigilantly surveying all those awaiting their family members to arrive and protecting the 'Do Not Enter' signs between the gates and the unscreened who were awaiting family members.  The entire hour we were there he did not move from that position.  I imagined his arm had to have long since fallen asleep.  The expression on his face was drab and miserable.  Then my estrogen distracted me when I noticed the cutest little girl with a big smile on her face.

She was running to and fro across the little waiting area, happily exploring and babbling.  Everyone was smiling and watching her, everyone except Mr. TSA, that is.  He stood glued in his statuesque misery position.  The only time he moved was when the little girl decided to run towards to 'Do Not Enter' signs as if she were breaking free of all the reins of the world.  Her young mother hastily chased after the baby before she could violate the imaginary lines.  Suddenly Mr. TSA was very animated and exclaimed a "You can't enter here!".  The mother was apologetic and snatched up her baby with a scowl as Mr. TSA returned to his miserable state, glaring into emptiness. I sat on my bench and laughed inside. 

What a way to live.  Miserable, without affect, and so without emotion as to not even smile at the innocence in the world.  I sat there and smiled thinking how fortunate I was to not know such misery.  I vowed to never let myself come close to such a state of existence.  Then my sister's plane arrived and the whole incident was pushed to the back of my consciousness. 

Seeing my smiling and exhausted sister, who is now visiting until the middle of next week when we all will embark on a drive down to my parents together, put an even bigger smile on my face.  How awesome it is to be able to smile at both the unexpected and expected sweet moments in life?  That's what I call having it good.

Friday, December 17, 2010

What Have Christmas Trees Come To?

Being a Vermonter I have a firm belief about Christmas Trees.  They must be real.  Its imperative and mandatory.  It would be blasphemous for a Vermonter to not have a real Christmas Tree, afterall, much of the ones found across the country leaned against store fronts and makeshift Christmas Tree lots come from this fair state. 

As a little child, growing up on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, my parents instilled in me the tradition of cutting down a Christmas Tree.  What was once a hard stuck tradition is now weaning away to more convenient and modern ideas.  Call me a traditionalist, but nothing beats climbing into the family truckster and venturing out into a snow covered field with a saw and dragging a fallen conifer back to be tied to the roof (National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation Anyone?)

The smell of fresh pine filling your home is better than anything Yankee candle can pull off and then at the end of the Christmas season, which is as soon as I wake up on January 1st, it can be hauled outside and left to become tinsel laden compost.  Really, the only negative part is the needles.  Needles are the bane of my existence.  I occasionally find a stray pine needle in August while cleaning those far reaches that are behind my furniture, but even when I find those dastardly, brown things months later they still make me smile and think of the warmth the tree brought to my home for the brief time it filled my living room. 

I wouldn't settle for anything less.

But some people do...

Artifical trees have been around for decades.  They are so incredibly popular for many reasons, whether its cleanliness, ease of care, convenience, or lack of access to "real" trees.  Rather than getting in the truckster and going for an adventure you go into your basement, attic, or closet, pull out a box, unfold the tree, and stick it in a stand.

Now they come prelit with lights


And all whole rainbow of colors!

But for some, even an artificial tree is not what they are looking for either.  Something even simpler than a needleless tree you store in a box most of the year.  It takes up no floor space.  There's no lights.  Nothing more is needed to set it up and rolling and unrolling.  

I give you the "Wall Christmas Tree".  

In tapestry...

or a decal...

It brings the Christmas experience to an all time low.  No more trudging through the snow looking for the perfect Christmas tree.  No more ornaments! Or tinsel! Or fresh smell of spruce that is the best thing next to pumkin pie!  I can't bear the thought of it!  

The Christmas Tree is such an integral part of the Christmas that I don't think it should be messed with, unless absolutely unavoidable.  If I could bottle up the Vermont Christmas Tree Experience and share it I would (see my last post).  Everyone should know what it's like to seek out the perfect tree, cut it down yourself, decorate it proudly in your living room, and put presents underneath it for Christmas morning.  And Especially, a Christmas tree doesn't belong unrolled and pasted to a wall. 

What is your stance on Christmas Trees?  Are real the only way to go? Or do you live in Hawaii and only decorate palm trees? I can't be the only one with such a nostalgia for the real thing, can I?

Thursday, December 16, 2010

There and Back Again - Just for a Tree

Its become painfully real just how far away the Northeast Kingdom is and how great a two hour drive can be.  Since we've moved we've only traveled back to our 'home' once... to get a Christmas Tree of course.  Years ago we found a gem of a place and we weren't about to break with tradition, even if it is over a hundred miles away.  When you find a good Christmas tree farm you don't just give it up and go buy one at the super market instead so we made the journey back to the Frenchman on the hillside.

 Every year the man comes out, greets us, and offers us a ride on his tractor.  "No thank you." We always say as we motion to our boots and gloves.  "We're dressed to make the hike."  He hands us a saw, nods, and waves us off as we trek up the steep hillside.

After just a few minutes of walking, before our breath really has a chance to run away from us, we seem to find the perfect tree.  Part of me wishes the hunt would take longer and we could walk around pointing and debating over bare spots and pointedness perfection of the top for our star, but too many of his trees are perfect making our search short and sweet.

This year Shawn decided it would be my turn to cut down the tree.  "You can handle it.  Just don't hurt yourself."  was what he said to me.  Ah, my husband knows me well.  I invariable injure myself on the most menial tasks.  (coming from the woman who got her finger stuck in the storm window of her new home the first hours there.) So, I grabbed the saw and began sawing..

It was more work than I thought.  Just before Shawn decided he should interveine I declared I had sawed enough and was going to push the tree over. With a swift body check to the tree and simultaneously declaring 'Timber!' the tree succumbed to my efforts. 

And then I realized maybe I hadn't sawed quite enough...

This is what happens when you don't saw enough.... the trunk of your tree splits.  Oopsies.  I thought it was funny, however Shawn, did not.   He groaned and declared I had messed up the tree, but I disagreed.  Surely it could be fixed!  

Of course, By fixed I meant Shawn would figure out how to make it fit in our tree stand. 

And then back down the mountain we went, back to the Frenchman and his tractor. 

The Frenchman bundled up our tree with some dangerous and ancient looking mechanical masterpiece.  It was loud and noisy and part of me worried he was going to lose his arm in it.  Then, happily, the man offered us hot chocolate and cookies for no charge in the warmth of his garage.  Of course I obliged and had my fair share!

As we left I said the same thing I do every year, "isn't this place great?"  Its one of those places that just smells like tradition as soon as you step foot there.  A kind old man, tractors, Christmas trees, hot chocolate and cookies?!  Its all the ingredients awesome Christmas traditions are made of!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

An Atypical Laundry Find

Every wife finds weird things in her husband's laundry.  Tools, keys, pens, food, and lord knows what else.  I am pretty sure, though, that the wife of a firefighter/paramedic will find the most unusual things imaginable.  When I did the laundry the other day I think that theory has been solidified. 

Exhibit A

So what is that exactly?  Why, its an endotracheal tube, ET tube for short.  If you aren't familiar with medical equipment an ET tube is an airway used in emergency situations or for surgeries when you aren't breathing on your own or need to be ventilated artificially.  Here is a video demonstrating an intubation in the operating room.  (if you don't like watching medical sort of things just skip it)

So when I found this amongst my husband's laundry from work the following conversation took place.

Me:  "So was this actually IN someone?"
Shawn: "No, that was just for practice.  I must have shoved it in my pocket afterward."
Me:  "Oh, okay.  Do you want me to save it then?"  
Shawn: "Sure. I'll use it again later."

See, perfectly normal.  Right?
Okay, maybe only if you're the wife of a paramedic, but that has to be in the running for the weirdest thing ever to be found while doing laundry.  Don't you thing?   Have you found something even more strange than an ET tube in your husband's clothes?

Monday, December 13, 2010

The One That Stayed Behind

 **I know this is a repost, but I've been having issues with comments being enabled :(  Hopefully now comments can be added to this post and all subsequent posts!  Thanks for those of you who emailed me!

When we were packing up our trailer back at the Cabin our neighbor stopped over to talk to Shawn.  I wasn't home at the time while they stood on the frozen lawn and talked like old friends despite a good generation gap between them.  The neighbor, who is the only other person to live year round on our road, started talking about his beloved Beagle.  The Beagle we would see them walking up and down the road in the warmer months.  Come to think of it I hadn't seen him in a few weeks.  It wasn't just because it was suddenly cold and snowy.

The Beagle had died, suddenly, of a brain aneurysm just two weeks earlier.  As the neighbor told Shawn the story his eyes filled with tears.  He wasn't just a dog, but family.  Someone who had been with them for years.  Jokingly, as Shawn added more of our belongings to the trailer, he told the neighbor "We have three dogs, you want one of ours?"  

A moment of silence passed and then the neighbor asked if he were serious.

Shawn stood for a second, half wondering what he had really suggested and if he really was serious.  We had discussed together, not more than the night before, about the difficulties of owning three dogs in a slightly smaller home that was in the middle of town rather than out in the woods.  Much of our worries were over providing them each with enough attention and space.  And what if we had a child?  How would the Little Ranch hold up to having a child and three dogs?  We didn't know...

Reluctantly, still clouded in thought, Shawn answered.  Well.... maybe Clyde?  The neighbor's eye's lit up and then Shawn wondered what the heck had he just done.  Before he could think any further they were both inside and he was showing Clyde to the neighbor.  When the neighbor saw Clyde for the first time he almost burst into tears at his likeness to his former beagle.  He was perfect, he said. 

I was sitting in class when I received a text message informing me that he had offered Clyde to our neighbor and why he did, but that he wouldn't do it if I didn't want to.  As my teacher was discussing schizophrenia my eyes welled up with tears.  What kind of a situation is that to respond to in the middle of psych class?  I sat in my seat trying not to cry at the thought of never seeing my happy little boy beagle thumping his tail wildly when he sees me as I processed what Shawn had just told me.

Deep down I knew he would be in an incredible home with people who would love him dearly.  Their own grief was fresh and hearts were in need of mending, something Clyde certainly could do.  I knew that there was a big difference in caring for two dogs versus three.  As hard as it was, I knew it would benefit everyone.  Clyde would never spend a day in a crate like he does with us when we are at work since the neighbor is retired and would surely get all the one on one attention he desires. 

The next day I said goodbye to Clyde before Shawn walked him down the road to our neighbors.  He jumped up, licked me a million times like he always does, and then wagged his tail as Shawn led him out our front door for the last time.  I couldn't go with Shawn to hand Clyde over.  Instead I sat on the couch and cried with my other two dogs.  

Sometimes doing the right thing is so very hard.

The next day the neighbor told us that after Shawn left Clyde went to the door and whined once.  Then they threw a ball to him, he went after it, wagged his tail, and had moved on to a new chapter in his doggie life.  Our two dogs are as close as can be and never missed a step. 

I still think of Clyde often.  There is not a happier and more easy going dog in this world.  While I feel saddened he is no longer in our home I know that he is just as happier (if not more) in the loving home he is now a part of and I feel better knowing that we were able to heal our neighbor's broken heart. 

Saturday, December 11, 2010

What Would You Do? Friendship Poll

Every once and a while  we each are caught in a situation where the decision seems simple enough yet it bothers you to no end.  That's what happened to me the other day....

Out of the blue a friend I hadn't talked to since she changed jobs and I never run into anymore sent me a message on facebook.  It was something along the lines of this:

My boyfriend said that I could finally post photos of him and I together on facebook as long as there are no photos of my ex and I together.  I really want to post photos of him so could you please delete the photo of (Her Ex) and I walking into the wedding reception together that is in your facebook album?  It has to be done, sorry.  You'll have that photo forever for yourself so it should be okay if its not on facebook. 

I sat at my computer for a moment mulling over what she had just asked.  She was referring to the photo of her and one of my good friends walking into our wedding reception together.  I still talk regularly to her ex and work with him occasionally.  This is the photo...

Part of me thought it wasn't a big deal and the other part of me was irritated by the whole situation.  A volley of thoughts cascaded through my mind as I mulled over the issue.
  • Why should I care?
  • Its not my fault her boyfriend has such weird and controlling demands
  • Tons of people are paired with people they don't know, used to date, or don't like at weddings. 
  • But it does mean a lot to her.
  • It is just facebook.... would anyone even notice if the photo is gone? Probably not.
  • Did she even really give me a choice or make a demand, though?
  • I should be allowed to post photos from my wedding reception if I want.
  • What would I want if I was in her shoes?

I seriously considered both sides of the issue for a little while, but in the end I decided to just delete the darned photo.  It just seemed easier and less confrontational.  I'm not willing to lose a friend over something so dumb, even if it is irritating. 

But I was wondering...  if this situation happened to you what would you do?

Don't you just love how the dumbest things in life turn out to be issues?

Friday, December 10, 2010

The Perfect Place

We've now been in our new home for a few days and had a chance to really get warmed up to the idea of living on a bustling road with neighbors and streetlights.  To be honest I really love it here, the house that it.  Its nothing like the cabin and our little piece of land is nowhere near as nice, but inside the little house everything is perfect as can be. 

When we first walked in we discovered that the former owner had left all her rugs and curtains.  How nice of her!  We really didn't have anything for the floors or windows so this was such a nice gesture.  Actually, I imagine she had no use for all of these rugs and it was a heck of a lot easier to leave them behind.

In just two days we were unpacked, put away, and it felt like home.  TWO days... Seriously.  I never imagined that the headache that was packing and moving would melt away so quickly.  Some of my friends have moved recently, and even not so recently, and they aren't even unpacked yet.  I know they're jealous. You didn't know I had such awesome unpacking skills did you?

Just to show you some proof.... that box on the floor in our spare bedroom is our very last box that needs to be unpacked.  That's it.  Just one box.  Its half empty and contains things we hung on the wall in the cabin that don't really fit in at this new house. 

Our walls are actually pretty darned bare.  Painted an off white they sure make the home seem bright and inviting, much more so than the dark pine walls of the cabin, but we don't have a single thing to put on them.  The excessive expanse of our walls has me excited to fill them with photos.  Finally, the push I need to actually purchase some more of my own!

Meanwhile, I have yet to do much venturing outside the home yet.  One step at a time... 
Plus, I am just starting to get comfortable here!