Wednesday, December 31, 2008

In Honnor of Mike

This week has been really tough. Mike's cancer has returned, invading his spinal column. The doctors gave him two weeks to live. Mike has been going through physical therapy in hopes of becoming strong enough for one last round of chemo; in hopes of giving him more time. Unfortunately, Mike is too weak. There is nothing more the doctors can do. Mike is returning home, to rest in comfort until the Lord calls him home.

The house has been very quiet, as we begin the process of coming to terms with this news. It is hard to prepare for a loss you refuse to accept. I hurt so deeply for Mark who is about loose his older brother. I can't even imagine what he and his family members are feeling. I am trying to prepare my self for the loss of a dear friend, but I just don't want to say goodbye yet.

I have lost people close to me, family members and friends, but it never get easier. Especially when they are young; when I remember just months ago everything was hopeful and Mike was in recovery. I can't imagine leaving this earth at the age of 28.

Cheers to Mike, to his energy, his laugh, his joy, his sense of humor, his skills on the guitar, his friendship, his stories, his life... his courage...

Friday, November 28, 2008

So Sad

I am sad to announce that Sir Lancealop and Jack didn't get along, so I had to take Lance back. I feel terrible, but it wasn't fair to either bunny. Now I am back down to one bun, and looking for a little girl bunny to join our family.

I am busy getting school finished up. Only three more weeks, until absolute freedom. I am so close I can almost taste it!

Speaking of... I better get back to it!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

We may have killed our neighbor

Okay, before I can tell this story, I should introduce you to the main characters

Mark Bailey - One of my roommates
Mark Thayer - My other roommate
Katherine - Mark Bailey's girlfriend
Old Nag - The mean old lady who lives next door
Mike Bailey - Mark Bailey's brother, currently undergoing treatment for his returning cancer

Okay, now that you know everyone, I can begin.

So shortly after we moved in I was standing at the end of the driveway waiting for my Dad to come pick me up. Old Nag comes out of her house and asks me, "Hey, who is parking in the street?". Thayer has been parking his truck in the street, a completely legal action, because our driveway only fits two cars at a time. I extended my hand for a handshake and walked over to introduce my self to our new neighbor, "Hi, my name is Jessica. I just moved in next door." She recoiled from me like I was severely infected with leprosy. Old Nag then proceeded to scream at me how my roommates and I have broken so many convent rules and how subhuman we are for it. Our landlord must have forgotten to tell us that only one vehicle is allowed to be parked in the driveway, there is no parking in the street, the lawn must always be neatly moved, and the recycling must be immediately returned to the garage even if you work during the day. I told my dad about the encounter and he told me Old Nag is probably upset her property value has gone down because she lives next door to a rental. When I returned home from a lovely dinner, I told Mike and Thayer about the encounter. They were so upset that Old Nag had been so rude to me, they went right over to her house. Old Nag's husband answered the door and proceeded to interrogate Mike and Thayer. "Where do you work, did you go to college, why don't you park in the garage, how many of you live in there, how long have you had your jobs, is anyone currently a student..." So we have decided they are just two cranky old people with nothing better to do than observe their neighbors and get bent out of shape over the stupidest things. So we just keep to ourselves, keep the lawn mowed, park where we like, and keep the blinds shut on that side of the house.

So, now the stage is set for the recent events. I was watching TV, taking a homework break when Bailey comes out of his room and tells me that Katherine, who recently left our house for work says there is a ticket on Thayer's windshield. Bailey and I run outside to check it out. Sure enough there is a traffic ticket on his windshield. He was fined $0.00 for parking against traffic. Bailey and I ran inside to give Thayer the news. There is no way a cop just happened to be in the neighborhood. We are off the main road, in a side street, and you can't see Thayer's car unless you come all the way around the corner. The best we can figure is Old Nag called the cops on Thayers car. She really needs a hobby. In order to take retaliation for this offense, Bailey and I promptly moved our cars into the street. For a couple days we only parked in the street, leaving our driveway perfectly empty.

When I came home from school the other day, I was told by Bailey we may have killed our neighbor, the Old Nag. He told me he was sitting in his room, which faces the street and an ambulance came down the street and parked in the neighbors driveway. It was there for awhile, flashing lights and everything. He didn't see them take anyone away. We figured our parking in the street is driving her beyond crazy and could have caused a heart attack or something. So I have started parking in the driveway again. I am not sure what the laws are regarding "death by passive-aggressive behaviors toward old people", but I do know that I don't anything to do with it.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

I'm Adopting!

I decided that it was time again for another rabbit. Poor Jack needs a buddy to bond with, and it just so happens there is a bunny at the shelter that needs a home. So tomorrow after work, I am headed to the shelter to bring home my new baby, Sir Lancealop. I didn't pick that name, it is what the new bunny came with; it is pretty cute though!

The new bunny is an adult male. They are not sure exactly how old he is, but they are guessing that he is full grown. This means he should be about one year old. He appears to be a mix breed with lop being the main breed. He has these very cute floppy ears that stick straight out to the sides of his little bunny head! He is a beautiful grey color. Not a dull gray, but a bright gray with little spots of white and brown. He is very calm and relaxed most of the time. When I first saw him, he came running up to the front of his cage to be petted. He loves to lay on the laps of the caretakers at the shelter and to take naps in his cage. It will be a bit more work to bond two males, but it will work out in the end I think. Jack was very eager to bond with Katie, and he seems ready to find another friend. He has been getting used to Juno, a roommate's girlfriend's dog; but I know that he would rather have a bunny buddy.

Here is a picture of little Sir Lancealop

I can't wait to get my new baby home and situated. I have been storing up toys and boxes for him, so he will have some of his own. I am so excited!!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Any Tips?

I have a terrible habit of chewing on my fingernails. I think it has to do with stress and anxiety. When I get nervous about something, or am apprehensive about something, or thinking about something that I can't control; I just can't resist the urge to chew and pick on my fingers. I will rip the fingernails off down; often times past the quick. I will pick on the hangnails, and the little thing-ies of skin until they bleed. My fingers will be raw and painful for days. Then just when they grow out, I start the process all over again.

I hate this habit. I know how disgusting it is. I know how dirty nails are, how many germs are there. I hate how my fingers look. But I just can't stop.

Any Tips?

Another Airport Message

I'm sitting in the SeaTac airport, waiting to board yet another flight. This time it is to Boise, Idaho. Dad and I are headed there to meet up with another member of Remodelers Advantage, a national consultant group we are both members of. We are going to check out his business, how he is set up, and take a look at how he runs his operations.

We are also going to stop by Fusion Set, the company currently hired for our marketing. We will be able to see their offices and how they are set up. Then Chad, the other RA member, Dad, and I are going to drive together down to Salt Lake City, UT where Dad and I will pick up our rental car from the SLC airport before heading up the mountains to Park City. Park City is like SLC's Whistler; a ritzy, upscale ski resort. Dad actually worked on some of the first buildings in the area when we were living down in SLC. We have our second annual RA meeting there. So for three days I will be in long meetings with remodelers from around the nation (a few are even from Canada). It will be intense because it never ends. You talk business at breakfast, lunch and dinner. Then, when I finally get back to the hotel room and all I want to do is sleep and rest my little brain, Dad wants to keep talking business. I love this, I really do, but sometimes enough is enough.

It's pretty funny. We have been sitting in the airport at our gate for about 20 minutes, before Dad realised his forgot his cell phone in the truck. This is really bad news because he stays in contact with the crews and subs throughout the meetings, so no cell phone means no contact (he hates my blackberry, it is too complicated and the buttons are too small). He ran to catch a cab, to go back to the hotel, to come back to the airport, and back through security before our plane leaves. A part me is really happy cause now he can't tease me for the disaster I caused when I slept in and missed our flight to meet the cruise ship when Nichole and I flew went to Mexico. At least when I got to the airport, I had all my stuff.

Well, I better get going. it is getting close to boarding, and I better figure out if I am boarding or finding another flight. Here go, another day in my life!


Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Anyone See A Resemblance?

Presidential Debates

Well, I have just finished watching the first 2008 Presidential Debate between Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) and Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL). (I don't have cable in my house yet, so I had to watch the debates online.)

I have to say that I was disappointed with Sen. Obama. He did not seem to be very aggressive or straight forward. He was weak in his defense of Sen. McCain's points and rarely had a strong counterpoint. After scanning a few of my favorite news sources, and a few general sources, I was surprised by the lack of support for Sen. Obama's performance. It seems the media, who has been a cheerleader for Sen. Obama in the past, was also disappointed.

Sen. McCain seemed to be only opponent in attendance who was interested in direct clash. Sen. McCain also seemed to have a better handle on foreign affairs, aside from his 'punish by ignoring' policy. Although, Sen. McCain enjoyed getting on tangents which included sob stories of families who lost children in war, his attendance at ceremonies of solders signing up for another tour in Iraq, and his bracelet honoring a dead solider. But wait, Sen. Obama has a bracelet too!

Every year I am frustrated by the lack of direct clash, inability to directly answer the lead questions, and general nature of the debates. I thought the purpose of these debates to allow for direct interactions between candidates. However, it seems to be an extension of previous speeches.

I am excited to see the Vice Presidential Debates. Palin has not been very successful in her public interviews and speeches, with the exception of her initial appearance at the Republican Convention. This may be the Democrats change to make the Republican look weak.

I have not yet made up my mind as to whom I will be supporting coming the November elections. I am not excited about either candidate and both candidates have qualities which cause me to be nervous. Given the current economic, foreign affairs, and domestic status, I believe this will an incredibly important election. ...oh and don't even get me started on the bail out proposal.

Anyone else, just as disappointed as I am? Anyone else eager for the Vice Presidential debates? I would love to hear your thoughts.

Monday, September 15, 2008


The other night I couldn't sleep. I was laying there in the dark thinking about the saying, "Everything happens for a reason". I began to reflect upon my own life and here is what I came up.

1. All those past relationships - taught me what I need in a partner and to appreciate the wonderful man I have now.

2. All my car accidents - taught me the frailty of life, to be a defensive driver, and the consequences of recklessness

3. My DUI - taught me to never chance it, to plan ahead, and to prevent others from making my mistake

4. Losing people close to me - to love those around me, to tell people "i love you", to value life for the wonderful gift it is

5. Living with depression - to know my own strength, learning to ask for help, acceptance

6. Being born a klutz - taught me to laugh at myself, accept my failures, and determination to overcome

7. Developing friendships, then loosing them - to appreciate what I have, and when to let go

8. Being a liar - has taught me to not lie, to say I am sorry, and to face the messes I have made

I am sure there were more that I came up, but this is all I can remember. I believe it to be important to reflect on the painful memories, the embarrassing moments, the hard times in order to remember what I have learned, what I felt, and how much I never want to experience that moment again. It is important to humble ourselves, as it is all too easy to forget our mistakes, and focus upon our good sides.

But isn't that life is all about? We come to Earth to learn lessons, to better ourselves, to continually strive to be better people. Everyone stumbles, trips up, and gets hung up. But that is why we are not alone. That is why we help each other, forgive each other, because one day it will be ourselves that needs help up. One day, it will be our turn to ask for help. Make sure someone will be there to help you up.

Monday, August 25, 2008


I closed out my old apartment on Friday night, and hit up the Beav with Mark and Joel. I am now officially living out two vans. They are not near any rivers, but they might as well be.

All my stuff is crammed into two Chevy Express Vans not being used by company employees right now. I am living out of a box in my parent's basement. It's not too bad. I'm always on time for work, even though I get up five minutes before work starts. Dinner is always made for me, lots more TV channels to pick from, Julie is taking the place of my roommates for entertainment, Mom plays with Jack while I work, and the amount of gas I am using is next to none. It is a bit strange not to have anywhere to go. Before I would get off work and take off for home. But now I just walk back to the house, and try to find something to do. It is a bit strange, and I am looking forward to being back on my own.

Jack is learning how to run up and down staircases. When we let him into the living room that is all he wants to do. Up and down, up and down, up and down he goes. But when he tires of that, he darts underneath the furniture and finds all the tiny places he can cram himself under. It is pretty funny. Mom loves when he binkies. Last night, he binkied six times in a row. Now that is one happy bunny.

Now that I have access to a shop and tools, I am working on building myself a bookcase. I have designed it to be completely customizable. Each shelve is a unit in itself, and they have pegs that snap into another shelve unit, so I can make it four selves high, or two separate shelves of two high each or what ever I might find to work best. I made the selves varying heights too, so my tall books, photo albums, and sketch pads have a place to call home. I am pretty excited about my creation. I hope it turns out like what I am picturing in my head.

Joel bought me a guitar for my birthday and I am learning a song already. I have practiced my cords enough so my fingers are starting to stretch out. My finger tips are finally hard enough to play for an hour at a time. I would play so much when I first got it, that typing at work the next morning would be so painful. But finally I have hardened up my fingertips, and can now play for a long time. I am working on switching between notes fast enough. Right now, it is just pretty silly, but I can recognize what I am playing.

Well, that is about all that is new with me, well as least all that I can think of now. Peace.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Sitting... Waiting... Wishing...

I'm sitting in the lobby of Glass Doctor, waiting for the windshield on the 1995 Work Van to be replaced, wishing I was back in the office so I could get something productive done. Charlie had a BIA-GA meeting this morning, and was running late, so I had no ride back to the office. So I borrowed mom's laptop, so at least I could I write my article for the next BIA-Newsletter. Now that I finished that, I have nothing but Internet cruising to do. Now, this might sound fun to someone, but all I can think about is the work back at the office. I feel guilty getting paid to sit here. Normally I would welcome this kind of task, but not this week.
We have turned in our applications for the new house. (P.S. I am moving - the rent at my apartment increased and I was not happy - I am moving). I really hope that we get this place. I am very excited. It will be interesting to live with two boys and no girls. (Did I mention they are both named Mark!). I don't see any trouble arousing from being the only female around. I tend to get along better with guys. I am a bit nervous about going back to the roommate thing. It has been really nice living alone, aside from the paying 100% of all bills - that sucked. The whole getting used to sharing space thing is always awkward... do we have our own cupboards, or do we just share all food, do we make a chore chart or just clean up as we go, who pays what, who's name on what account, all that kind of crap. Oh well, for my last year in Bellingham, I might as well save some money. Besides, maybe Jack will feel better with other guys around, he can have some guy time. :)

Speaking of my baby... Here are some of my favorite pictures over time...

Jack somehow unattached his potty from the cage and dragged it into his box and then sat in there for the longest time... what a funny bunny

Katie is napping and Jack is giving her a bath... awh how sweet! (P.S. those are not droppings, they were trying out raisins for the first time)

This was Katie's first bath, she LOVED it! She would kick her back legs and send water flying - I think I might have been wetter than she was!

Easter Bunnies!!

Katie was big that we just squished Jack inwhere ever we could, she was so big - and not very happy with me, as you can tell...

This is one of the last pictures I have of Katie, and I like it because they were always like this, sitting together, hanging out together in the their cage, always on the second floor...

Best Pals!

Monday, August 4, 2008

Going Public

I am so proud of myself. This morning I finally did something I have been thinking about doing for a long time now. I rode my bike to work; well actually it was a combination of riding the bus and riding my bike.

I rode my bike down to the Bellingham Bus Station on Railroad, then took a bus to the Cordota Station, then took a bus to the Lynden Station, and from there road my bike the three miles to the office. All in all, it only took me one hour to make the entire journey.

When I drive my car it takes me about 25 minutes to get work on the freeway. Even though taking the bus/my bike takes over twice as long, I get to read my book, listen to music or people watch while the bus. The three mile bike ride wakes me up, gives me energy and releases those happy endorphins in my brain so when I do arrive at the office, I am cheerful and ready to get started. Imagine that, without any coffee! I'm even going to log my miles on the SmartTrip website for the WTA. You can win money, gift cards, and fun stuff like that.

Last Saturday, Joel and I went to Wet-n-Wild in Federal Way. With his Microsoft PrimeCard, we get into the park for only $10, instead of the full $35 per person. It was a lot of fun. It has been a long time since I rode a tube down a water slide, or riding a roller coaster. The last time I was on swing set, I got an upset stomach, so I was pretty proud of myself of myself.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Now it is summer...

Summer quarter ended yesterday! Alright!

It was actually one of my best quarters at Western. I enjoyed my Comm 498 class, maybe one of my favorites overall. I've enrolled in this class before (but due to an illness had to drop out that quarter) and I definitely say that the group of students directly correlates to the amount of fun that class can be. Ethics tend to remind me of rhetoric, in the sense that there are dictionary terms for the concepts, but they are truly hard to define. During discussion of ethics, it is hard not to fall prey to violating an ethical code, even when you are being ethical. Just as when you are trying to define rhetoric, it is very easy to employ rhetoric. I love thinking about things like this. When the path becomes circular and complicated, but at the same time is straight and narrow. I love conversations and discussion when there are so many points of view which are just as correct as the next, and justifications can be made all. To challenge yourself to discover why you truly believe what you do. Man, is the communication department just right for me.

On the other hand, I love how all my Communication courses mix so well with all of my Sociology course too. It is interesting to examine how society has constructed itself, while also examining how we communicate with each other changes. There is a definite correlation between the two. What am I going to do when I am not in school anymore. Really, as much as I hate the homework, or the lectures that never end, or the nights spent writing papers. But I will miss the discussions, the people, the topics, the option to sleep in, and the option to leave when I want.

But I am excited to get back to work. I love my job. Talk about a challenge. Who knew I could write an entire Fall Protection Work Plan and Accident Protection Work Plan, and Respiratory Protection Work Plan, and Employee Safety Manual and Employee Manual that would stand up to legal criticism. Yahoo. I love going to conferences, consolation meetings with RAR, I like working on new plans and drawing up the as built. I am getting pretty good at it too. I am looking forward to finally having the time to get my three page to-do list knocked down.

Well, I guess I should get the day started! Cheers.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Rest in Peace my Katie

My Katie-Rabbit passed away Monday night. She was just barely one-rabbit-year old, about eight people years. Jack and I miss her already, but we know she is in a better place.

R.I.P. my Katie

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Grinding Gears

I am having a hard time going back to school. I am too used to only handling the workplace. I much prefer the workplace to the demands of school. I get home after a long day and I forget that I need to check what homework is due... I get to work and I forget that I have to process everything as quickly as I can since I am only there for three hours instead of eight... I plan my weekend adventures, and I forget that I have to consider the next week of school and ponder if I want to work or play; especially since my paycheck is no where near what I am used to. I am switching gears so much and so fast that my poor clutch is fried. (I think that was a pretty cleaver line...). This is especially bad during summer quarter, everything is so shortened, everything has to be completed faster, and on top of the classroom load, I have five online courses needing my attention.

My poor buns are feeling very neglected. I can tell. When I get home, they go nuts, begging to be let out. As soon as I let them out, they race around because they know they will be headed right back in shortly when I head to bed. Poor little ones. I hope they will forgive me.

Oh well, it will all be worth it when on August 23rd I wake up a college graduate. No longer will have to argue with the registrar's office, no more "yep, you can graduate... oh wait... no, you can't". I can't wait until the diploma is hanging on my wall and this will all be behind me.

Monday, June 30, 2008


Man, what a crazy summer it is starting to be.

I just got back from San Diego. That was a great trip, inspiring and interesting conference. I meet a lot of new friends, did some insane networking and got a ton of new ideas for the office. I love going to conferences like this one. Not only do you get to travel somewhere, meet new people but the most important, at least to me, is the refreshment of your love for the business. Being around all these smart people, efficient companies, and hearing about new and exciting things, just makes me get pumped up, excited to keep up the hard work, and to try for new levels of success. Hearing praise about our systems, processes, and methods of handing different situations, hearing about how other companies do the same things we do, or are experiences the same difficulties, just makes you feel better about your current situation. It was a blast.

I didn't really feel very good on the way home. The plane was super small, and I don't think air conditioning was invented when they built this plane because it was so hot. Not to mention the screaming kid. The poor mother was doing everything she could to comfort and calm the kid, but he didn't want any part of it. I tried really hard not to get mad, it wasn't her fault by any means, but a human can only take so much. Oh well.

I have started my last and final quarter of school. I am taking five on-line courses and two in-class courses. I am super busy and trying to find a way to successfully finish out my education while still fulfilling my duties at work. For example-this morning I drove out to the shop at 6am and was able to enter time cards before I had to leave for my first class. I'm using my break between classes to document a couple S.O.P.'s, email off some documents to contacts at the conference, update the website, review an essay for an online course, and do some homework for an in-class course. Then after my second class, I will head back to Lynden to finish out payroll and prep for the safety meeting tomorrow. Then it is back to Bham to meet up with Julie, and hopefully Chris and Jackie, to see Wally in theaters, then home to clean up from the weekend, clean the bunny cage, get some laundry done, and some homework. Maybe I can squeeze in some work hours. We will see...

So that is about all I am up to. Planing a camping trip with friends... Joel's parents are going to meet my parent's on July 5th... yikes... and who knows what else will come up.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Maya Anglou, the great


enough money within her control to move out
and rent a place of her own,
even if she never wants to or needs to...

something perfect to wear if the employer,
or date of her dreams wants to see her in an hour...

a youth she's content to leave behind...

a past juicy enough that she's looking forward to
retelling it in her old age...

a set of screwdrivers, a cordless drill,
and a black lace bra...

one friend who always makes her laugh...
and one who lets her cry...

a good piece of furniture not previously owned
by anyone else in her> family...

eight matching plates, wine glasses with stems,
and a recipe for a meal,
that will make her guests feel honored...

a feeling of control over her destiny...

how to fall in love
without losing herself...

how to quit a job,
break up with a lover,
and confront a friend without; ruining the friendship...

when to try harder...

that she can't change the length of her calves,
the width of her hips, or the nature of her parents...

that her childhood may not have been perfect...
but it's over...

what she would and wouldn't do for love or more...

how to live alone...
even if she doesn't like it...

whom she can trust,
whom she can't,
and why she shouldn't take it personally...

where to go...
be it to her best friend's kitchen table...
or a charming inn in the woods...
when her soul needs soothing...

what she can and can't accomplish in a day...
a month...
and a year...

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Flight of the Conchords- Business Time

Who Am I Kidding?

Goodness, I was in a foul mood. I have a ton of friends. And they just so happened to all be in Bellingham last weekend and they all wanted to out on Saturday night. That was quite the night. Here is a breakdown...
  1. Work on car with boys, chase a wild rabbit, and buy fuel injector cleaner
  2. Hit up El Gitano for some beans and chips, some Cau, Sara, Aleks, Sato, Joel, and Jess time, and of course food
  3. Race home to clean up, shower up, pre-funk it up with Joel, Mark, Jenn, and Nichole
  4. Walk down to the Royal for some girl time with Jenn and Nichole
  5. Sneak over to the Beav to see what the boys are doing, and of course use a bathroom with no line
  6. Some how end up in the basement of the Royal, try to make Nichole pee in the sink down there, get caught, make up a story, and head back to the dance floor
  7. The Royal gets crashed by Jacob, Bob, Joey, and Shelly... DRAMA! ( I don't miss those days, I cope by drinking more)
  8. Back the house, find Bob and Jacob in an alley
  9. Punch out my living room window
  10. Crash into my bed and call it a night
  11. Breakfast at Denny's with three orders of hash browns and Moons over my Hammies
  12. Best part of all - Re-living it all at breakfast with the boys

I honestly think that is the best part of having a night out on the town, or a wild night of drinking. Sitting around, half hung over, with your partners in crime the next morning, eating breakfast and laughing over what took place only hours before. Figuring out what really happened, who did what, who said what, who was where, and all the shenanigans of being 23.

I still can't believe I punched out my own window. I didn't want to have to tell my parents, but I did. They just laughed at me. I was figuring that I was going to have to tell my landlord, cash in my renter's insurance and have the entire window replaced (which would have included extensive exterior and interior work... which I would have had to hide my rabbits for, since they are not supposed to be in existence). But really I just had to take the window pane out, take it down to Lyndale Glass, order up a new one which should be here tomorrow. Problem solved. No one knows. And life goes on.

I will just add this story to my growing list of stories. Anna and Robert were talking one day, and they were surprised to find their best friends are so similar. Both Travis and I are good story tellers, great friends, wild and carefree, spontaneous, and the life of the party. Travis and I have decided that since we will most likely end up being the Maid of Honor and the Best Man at the Birch Wedding, we aren't going to toast Anna and Robert, no we are going to roast them. How fun is that!! I am already gathering my material.

Life is good right now. Life is really good right now.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Left Behind

I was laying in bed last night trying to fall asleep when I realised a very embarrassing fact. I have very few friends left in Bellingham. Really. The only reason my cell phone rings during the week is from Joel or from my parents (which is usually the result of something work related). There are people I could call. There is Nichole, living in Lynden with her two boys (but she is usually busy with her boys), there is Angela (but she is busy between school and her husband), there is Beach (but we usually see each other on girls night), and that is about it really.

How sad am I? I started to wonder if this was the result of making up my mind to move to Redmond next spring. Did I cut my ties with Bellingham too early? I thought I was an outgoing person, but am I really just an introvert who would prefer to be home alone? I am tired at the end of a day of work, and just really want to lay on the couch and then go to bed. But come on, I am 23, and don't want the life of a fifty year old. I feel so boring. When did I become such a homebody? Is that I just don't want to hang out, or is it that no one wants to hang out with me?

I do save money as I am not eating out, don't really go to the bars anymore (unless someone is in town), hardly go shopping, no coffee get-together, no fun. But I spend the money somewhere else since I don't really have much savings. So what is the deal? I am a nice, easy going, friendly 23 year old and I don't have any friends. Jack and Katie don't count I have decided.

Oh well. I guess I am not motivated enough to get out there and make some friends. I will be leaving next spring. I hate goodbyes. I hate the false promises of coming back to visit. I hate to leave people. I am excited to move. I feel like I will be catching up to people who have already started their new lives. I feel so behind. Maybe that is why I don't have friends in Bellingham, I don't want to make anyone else feel left behind. It sucks.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008


something stirs and awakens, an itch in fingers to dance, to express mysteries. nothing brings me more into a moment. enhancement of sounds, brightening of sights, awareness of details, eternity-like moments. travel outside the skin, out of my earthly ties and a freeing release of pent up angst. scenes begin to play out, adventures to be had, stories to tell, lives to live. nothing is limited, everything is possible, all at once. distractions become the focus, interior conflicts become exterior, confinements released. connections made to lost causes. belonging no where, belonging to on one. ready to run, to sit, to spin. the itch grows. the spirit sighs and body relaxes. lips part and emotions find voice. questions turn to answers, and fears to trust. need to express. need to express. need to express. scratch the itch.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Bothell to Huskey Stadium

On Monday, Joel and I went for a bike ride with his parents. It was so much fun. We meet up in Bothell and rode around Lake Washington, all the way to the Huskey Stadium and then back. Judy has this thing on her bike that tells us how fast we are going (in m.p.h.) and how many miles we have traveled. We averaged about 10 miles per hour for the three hour ride. My butt is so sore, it won't go near anything that resembles or feels like a bike seat. At one point my back tire was flat, but we didn't figure that out for a while. I was so tired, and my legs felt like lead. I was working so hard to keep up with everyone and not slow them down. I was mad at myself, cause I thought I was in better shape than that. Once we put more air in my back tire, I was ready to rock and roll. What a difference! Much better. On the way back I was ridding Judy's bike, Judy was ridding Joel's bike, and Joel was ridding my bike (I'm not sure why we played Chinese-fire-bikes, but we did) and when Joel applied the breaks on my bike as we were ridding down a pretty big the front tire completely blew! So Judy and Jack had to ride back to the cars and come to pick Joel and I up. But overall, it was a great day. Perfect weather for a bike ride. Great activity to do with Joel's parents.

The rest of the weekend was spent visiting open houses, hunting down a great guitar, almost buying another rabbit (which I was going to name Jimmy-he was so FREAKING cute!), relaxing at home, and barbecuing with friends. But now it is back to Bellingham, back to work.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Goal to Rock It One Day

Listen, I want to thank leaders of the--in the faith--faith-based and community-based community for being here. --George W. Bush Washington, DC 09/06/2005

Yep. That is the guy the American public elected. Sometimes I can't believe a person who speaks consistently like this is able to get so far, especially in politics. And then sometimes, I think there are more people like him in politics than not.

I was on a website the other day, where you enter your own opinions on various topics ranging from abortion, to emigration, to foreign policy and then based on your answers, it matches with you with a politician in the race for presidency who best matches your own opinions. I was surprised with my match. But what I like even more about this website, is that it provides you with examples, based on actual votes made, bills signed, and such. It provides detailed, documented, and researched data with sources provided. A rare thing to find today. Pretty interesting to see how I matched up with different candidates. It will be an interesting election year, that is for sure.

So the long weekend. It is about time! I am very tired. Everyday after work this week I have been napping for at least an hour, which means I don't get to bed on time, since I am still wide awake. Oh well.

I have made it my goal to learn a song and know how to play it without looking at notes or anything on a guitar by Christmas this year. I am going to do it. I have always wanted to learn how to play and now seems like a good time to start. I know the cords C, D, and G. So that is a good start. I want to be as good as Justin, Joel, Mark, Mark, and Mike. Man those guys are amazing. Joel was playing something something on his bass and Mark just watched Joel's fingers for a minute and then was playing along on his electric. Amazing!!! I just sit in the corner of the room, watching in awe, and sometimes singing along if I recognize the song. I just love to sit in on their jams. One day, I hope they will let me play along. That would be way too cool.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Frustrated and Disappointed

I received some very frustrating and disappointing news this morning. How do you separate your own feelings, perceptions, and judgements from another person's dilemma? How do you do this when you have been drawn in, and involved in the situation? How do you not feel disappointed when something happens to reverse it all? How do you sit back and let it go, let the person make their own decisions, even though you don't agree?

It is very easy to say, you just have to let people fall, you have to continue to support them, guide them, and pray that you are wrong; pray that the person will be happy, and in the end all will be well. But actually doing these things, truly feeling okay and releasing the negative feelings are very difficult to actually put in motion. It is hard for me to give credit for admirable goals, to positive dreams, and to making the tough decisions in this situation. It is hard for me to stay quiet on the side lines, to be supportive, to be kind. I want to believe, I want to be supportive, I want to be kind. What is the right decision to make? It is better to stuff my opinions, views, and perceptions down; to stifle them in favor of being supportive of this person? Is it really that helpful for the person in question? Would it actually be a bigger benefit for this person to hear how I truly feel? No one enjoys lip service, and I don't enjoy giving it. At what point it is not worth it to speak my piece? At the lost of the friendship, at the risk of hurt feelings...

Life can be so tough. I have read quotes and quips at the bottom of emails or other various places, saying it is moments like this that make people strong, that define life, and give us the courage to move on. But really, it is moments like this that make the rainy weather seem fitting, that make working out sound like a good idea, that make me want to get into bed and sleep on it. I definitely don't feel encouraged my predicament, rather I feel discouraged that things won't change, feelings and opinions will remain stifled, and the past will repeat. It all always does.

Friday, May 16, 2008


So yesterday, Charlie and I came back from measuring a home of a client for the As-Built drawings I need to get down by next week and I was checking the answering machine when I heard this message...

"This message is for Jessica Hudson, Office Manager at Hudson Remodeling, this is Gary Jenson (the mayor of Ferndale); Outstanding article in the BIAWC Newsletter! Truly Outstanding. We need more articles like this, I really appreciate your message and the public needs to hear it. Outstanding, outstanding! Pat on the back to you! Thank you very much." (P.S. I had to listen to the message like ten times to get the direct quote accurate!)

I was so excited that the article was finally printed, I ran straight out to the mailbox. There it was. A full page on page three. I don't think my head can get any bigger! Yahoo!

And it is supposed to be super hot today - another plus. What a great day!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

New Baby

I want this bunny... How cute! I could use this bunny as a floor pillow, he could warm up my bed before I get in it... I really want this bunny!! I am going to need a bigger apartment!

Take a walk through my thought process

I am reading a book which discusses how society has and is treating youth by examining the various manifestations of the crisis we are currently in. The topic is very interesting, and has changed how I reflect on my own adolescent years. The points this author makes are soundly justified through scholarly research and documented studies. Consider the current stand society takes with empathy. Or rather the lack of empathy in society. I will admit it, I don't have much empathy for any one outside of my family. But really, I can have little empathy for individuals within my family. I lock my doors when I see homeless people panhandling on freeway exits. I am irritated when I see the very "homeless" looking guy who lives in my building - "would it kill him to shower?" I think. Society actually encourages this behavior. Over time we have this encouragement through the place of homeless children in orphanages, where they were 'out of sight out of mind'. How long do stories of missing children, victims of shootings, murder etc. stay in the news? Long enough get the public hype to sell copies, and then it is onto the next big story. Why is this? When did it start? Can it change? What else does society do that I don't know about? Very interesting.

I found out yesterday that I need new tires. Not only did I drive home from Redmond on Sunday night with a nearly-flat right front tire, but there are hardly any treads left. Oops. I also need my oil changed, and the check engine light has been on for about the past two months. I knew this would happen, you get the car paid off and finally own something out right, and the stupid things starts to break down. Just knew it.

So another split holiday between my family and Joel's family. His mom and I had a surprisingly enjoyable chat. Started off talking about Scientology, then Wicca, then drugs, then bulimia/anorexia, then projects, then organization... anyways surprisingly enjoyable. It's not that I don't like Joel's mom, it is that I don't understand her sometimes, if not all the time. I think if we have a few more conversations like this one, then I might begin to understand where she comes from. People just have a way of surprising you.

My plans for the afternoon consist of napping. I love to nap. Anna, my old roommate, used to call me The Professional Sleeper. I can sleep for days without waking to eat, use the bathroom, or anything. I love to sleep. When I am upset, angry, sad, or depressed all I want to do is sleep. I love to nap, doze, and rest. There is nothing like being wrapped up in a warm blanket and turning off your brain. I love it. Sometimes I sleep just to sleep.

You know, thinking of Anna reminded me of her other nickname for me; Extreme. I do everything in extremes. I either sleep all the time, or hardly at all. (Like when I worked full time, was in classes at WWU full time, and hung out with Aleks and Cau until I went to work... they love to talk about those times.) I am either super clean or super messy, there is no tidy about me. You can either eat off the toilet or you can't even get in the door. I either don't drink or I drink to get drunk (and often times that just ends up in the backyard... Anna and Joel can speak to that). I never do things moderately, it is always one extreme or the other. The same goes for my school work, my physical activity level, my budget, when I read, when I write my stories... goodness. One time I told Anna I would have a TV show based on my life story and I would call it The Jess-o Extreme-o Hour.

Well, back to it. Only two and half more hours until nap time. Hooray.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

New Day

Today is a new day. I want so badly for this time to go smoothly, for things to work, for goals to be met... I know I can do it, I have to... Today is a new day!

Monday, May 5, 2008

French Fried Brains and Eggs

I am so tired. My body hurts, my brain hurts, my whole body seems to be on the border of falling of apart.

On Friday morning, I arrived home from North Carolina. Joel picked me up from the airport and dropped me back off at his place. I slept there for the rest of the day and then headed up to Bellingham later that night.

On Saturday morning at 6:30am I got up to get ready for a long day at the 2008 Tour of Remodeled Homes. This year we had two homes on the tour and our newly hired marketing company was coming to town. This was a great chance to share with Donna and Mary, our new marketing ladies, the work we do. I picked up Donna and Mary from their hotel, and took them out to the first home. They met with Charlie and Stuart, and then after a while I took them over to house number two. There they met Dave and saw another project we completed. Then I brought them back to the hotel, picked up lunch for everyone (including the Comcast guy) and headed back to help Dave out at house number two. Then once I finished up there, I met up with Joel and the boys. Justin was in town (he has been living in Alaska working in a mine using that Geology degree of his) and so was Mike (recovering from extensive chemo and stem cell treatments for his cancer). Mark, Mark, and Mark B's girlfriend came over and we were up until about 2am catching up and having fun.

On Sunday, it was back to Tour of Homes to show people around the home, to repeat myself over and over and over and over and over, to listen to retarded questions, judgements by people not in position to give them, all with a sappy smile on my face. But even after we closed up the doors for another successful year, it wasn't over yet. It was home to pick up Joel and then out to dinner with Donna and Mary. Even though the food was delicious and I did have a good time.

Then it was home, to say goodbye to a Joel that I hardly saw, and to bed so I can start another five days of work. Right off the bat this morning, Donna and Mary were at the office to talk more marketing with us. That lasted another five hours.

I am so tired. I don't want to talk about work anymore. I don't want to wear uncomfortable shoes. I don't want to wear suits anymore. I don't want to fake smile. I am tired of being passionate. I am so tired of it all. I think I need a day off. I need more than three glasses of wine. I need more than my bunny slippers and my heart blanket. I need a quiet place, Joel, and more wine.

Instead, I will finish my glass, I will put the bunnies to bed, I will brush my teeth, put on my pj's, and I will go to bed. Oh boy... I can't wait for it all to start over tomorrow. Yippee.

Please pardon my sarcasm. It must be the wine.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Oh so tired...

Oh my. How in the world am I so tired? Our meetings go from 8:00am until about 5:00pm, with dinner at 6:00pm. All I have to do physically is sit in a chair and type (Linda asked me to take notes of the commitments during the meetings). But I am exhausted. I want to lay down and close my eyes. I think that if I did that, I wouldn't wake up in time to make our 6:00am flight tomorrow. Every single night, when I get back to my room, I watch maybe an hour of TV and then I am asleep, remote in hand and lights on. When morning comes, you need to bounce right up and be ready to rock-n-roll. It is starting to drain me, but today is the last day. Thank goodness.

Well, better go, the first meeting is starting and I need to get ready. Audios.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Should Be

I should be working right now. But I don't want to. I would rather lay in bed and watch TV. I don't really have anything to say to these companies. I want to just regurgitate some stuff I read somewhere that they should be doing and call it good. I am on vacation in my brain, but still want that pay check when I get home.

Crap, does reality suck.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Airplane Speech

I'm sitting in the Salt Lake City airport, killing time before the next flight. I am busy mean-mugging this old guy who is talking very loudly on his cell phone. My dad asked if I was going to make another one of my famous "airplane speeches".

One time, my dad, sister Julie, mom and I were flying to Baltimore, MD and we loaded the plane in Seattle headed for Atlanta, GA. There were these three guys, in their early twenties who were sitting three or four seats back from where we were. They were talking so loudly about really dumb stuff, that I was loosing my mind. I really didn't want to listen to them all the way to Atlanta (about a five hour flight). I figured they were excited and waited about ten minutes before I stood up. Julie panicked, and watched me with really big eyes. I said, "Excuse me. Would you please mind lowering your voices as a courtesy to the other passengers on this flight. I can't even hear my sister speaking to me who is sitting right next to me. I would really appreciate it, if you wouldn't mind lowering your voices. Thank you." and sat down. I swear to you, five or six people clapped for me. The lady sitting across the isle from me, leaned over to tell me I was her hero. The guys were very embarrassed and were quiet for the rest of the flight.

I think right now, I will stick to mean-mugging this old guy. But if it gets out of hand, I have no problem reminding people of their manners.

Well, I think I will watch a movie. Our next flight isn't for another two hours or so. Next stop, North Carolina.

Friday, April 25, 2008


I am really excited. I have been asked to write a monthly article to appear in the local newsletter for the Building Industry Association of Whatcom County (BIAWC)! I have also been asked to write a second article for the Master Remodelers Council, a division of the BIAWC. I am really excited about this opportunity. I never thought I would be a published a columnist at 23. I am exaggerating here! :)

I am not sure if Dell, the current BIAWC president and a good friend of Charlie's was supposed to write the article, but he asked Charlie to come up with one, so of course it got pushed onto me. I was excited to write the article. It was something different than writting a safety plan, or an employee manual, or entering bills into Quick Books. I was asked to write an article on why remodelers/contractors should be charging for an estimate. I did some research (about a day and half) in the magazines we get, and organizations websites (like BIAWC and the nation wide BIA website) and summarised it all into a page long explanation of the benefits of charging clients for an estimate. I think it turned out very well. I was nervous to show Charlie, but he really liked it. Then I emailed it off to Diana at the BIAWC and she liked it so much that she asked if I would write for them all the time. She was amazed how quickly I was able to come up with a article that was, (and I quote), "so professional"!

I also found out that I get a $1 raise today! Oh boy! And I am eligible for vacation pay! Yippee. What a great day this is turning out to be. Tonight, I am driving to Redmond to pick up Joel (who will be starting his first day as a Full-Time Microsoft Employee on Monday), then on to Kent to have dinner with Anna and Robert. Then the four of us are heading off to Puyallup to party it up at Waynes (one of the best bars south of Bham). Then on Saturday it is back to Bellingham to get the apartment cleaned up for Julie (who will be watching the bunnies), get the bunnies all set to be without their Momma, and finish any forgotten loose ends. Then around 6am on Sunday, it is off to North Carolina for the next week.

Well, I better get back to work. Lots to take care of before the big boss man and I are out of the office for a week. Audios.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008


Okay, I was just busted, big time. Very embarrassed.

I had two pieces of Almond Roca for breakfast (hence the previous entry) and so I am feeling a bit of a sugar buzz. I get to listen to music when Charlie isn't in the office (the old grump likes dead silence in the office) so while he was out running errands this morning, I am rocking out. I had my music on random and some opera came on. I am trying out all kinds of different music right now, and am loving classical pieces and operas. Anyways, I was entering tickets and acting out what I imagined to be taking place in this particular opera. I was waving my arms around in the air, dramatically dating the entry of the tickets, flying across the room in my office chair as the music builds to file the tickets... you get the picture. I was being a complete dork in what I believed to complete privacy.

Well, to my dismay, I didn't hear the trucks pull in. As I was coming to the rescue of my tickets-in-distress, I finally noticed Dave and Stuart standing outside the office window. They could hardly breath they were laughing so hard. I was so embarrassed. I wanted to die. I wanted to hide under my desk with the papers I need to shred. Good thing Dave and Stuart are my cousins who have known me since birth. But still...

Monday, April 21, 2008

Blogging while on hold

What is the perfect thing to do while waiting on hold... blogging!

This weekend was wonderful. I spent three wonderful days in Friday Harbor with Joel celebrating our one-year of dating. Joel even treated us to hour-side-by-side massages. It was bliss. Even though the weather was cloudy and a bit rainy, it was a lot of fun to walk around, shop, explore, and eat. Except for the headache on the ferry ride back to Anacortes, the whole weekend was wonderful.

I leave for North Carolina this Sunday. I have a lot of reading to do in preparation for the three days of meetings. It doesn't sound like that long, but really, it is. I have to know 10 companies finances, budgets, marketing plan, and business plans inside and out, complete with areas of concern or necessary improvements. It is pretty overwhelming. Oh well. Just another challenge waiting to be overcome.

I have decided that I don't hate flying as much as I used to think I did. I still hate going through security (what is grosser than having to take your shoes off in public with a bunch of other shoeless people?), I still hate long flights (tall person + little airplane seats = grumpy Jess), but really it isn't that bad. I could be taking Grey Hound to North Carolina. Now that would be a lot longer trip, with a lot stranger people, and a whole lot worse overall. In the last nine months I have been to Maryland, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, California, Mexico, Utah, Nevada, Virgina, and New York. I feel like I live out of a suit case.

The other day Joel and I were having dinner with friends in Seattle, and they started to ask when the wedding was going to be. I just jokingly said, "I don't want to married until I am thirty". It annoys me when Joel and I get questions like that. I know they are just asking, joking, acknowledging our commitment to each other... what ever they may be doing. It seems to be an invasive question to ask. What if Joel and I didn't agree on that subject, or if we had never discussed it? What if that question caused arguments between us? Personally, unless I bring it up, I don't want to talk about.

I had the chance to ask a psychic a question not to long ago, and a friend was surprised I didn't ask if Joel was my soul mate. I felt that if you need to ask, you already know the answer. And besides, even if Joel is not my soul mate or if we don't end up marrying, I want to enjoy our relationship for what it is right now. I don't want to be thinking our future too hard. I don't want to be putting time frames, or time limits on what we have. I want to continue to have fun, to love him, to enjoy him, to grow with him, to explore this earth with him, to just be with him. What will happen in the future will happen, but now, I want to enjoy what is right now.

Friday, April 18, 2008


I have been thinking about spirituality lately, mostly my own spirituality. Recently my opinions and viewpoints have radically changed. Not that I have converted or anything. I just finally feel more comfortable with what I truly feel what religion and spirituality are. I believe this has been a journey I have walking for many years, but after a few recent events I finally feel peace, assurance, and comfort in what I believe.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008


OK, Now that I am at home instead of at work, I have more time to share some of my stories from my cruise around the Mexican Rivera. Oh man where to begin...

The adventures Nichole and I went through just to get to the boat is probably the best story. So, here goes. Our flight left SeaTac at 6:40am on Saturday, so I drove down to Redmond on Friday night after work so I could have one night with Joel before I left him for a week. We got to bed pretty late, but I had my suitcase already packed, and my carry one ready to go. Joel set two alarms and we went to sleep. I remember Joel waking me up, saying "Honey, you need to get up!" I sat up and looked at the clock; it was 6:20am!! CRAP!! We flew out of bed, I tossed some clothes on, and Joel graped my luggage and we went out the door. Joel doesn't even remember carrying my HUGE suitcase up a flight of stairs and tossing it in the trunk like it was a pillow. We drove as fast as we could to the airport, but luckily didn't encounter any police officers.
Nichole had been trying to contact me, as she took the shuttle to Seattle and was wondering where I was. She was trying to hold the plane for me, telling the flight attendants that I had been in a car accident. But it was too late. The ticket counter took my luggage (after I paid them $35 because my luggage was over weight) and gave me a security pass to get through security. Getting through security was an ordeal, apparently not too often do people without boarding passes try to get through. But once I was on the other side Nichole and I started the up-hill battle of trying to get out SeaTac. Thanks to the fact it was spring break, every airline was over booked. Even though we were on the wait list for five flights, everyone was telling us we weren't going to get out of SeaTac that day. By the pure grace of God, I ended up the Alaskan Airline counter. After being turned down by almost every other airline, an angel in disguise found a flight for Nichole and I to Santa Anna, California. Santa Anna is about an hour north of San Diego so we jumped at the chance to get on a plane.
Joel went online and reserved a rental car for us to drive from Santa Anna to the San Diego where (cross-your-fingers) our luggage should be waiting for us. When we landed in Santa Anna we had an hour and forty minutes to make the one hour drive, pick up our luggage, drop off the rental, and get a ride to the cruise ship terminal. It is a good thing that Californians like to drive fast (everyone, including a cop, was going 90-95 in a 60!) cause we had some serious ground to cover. Well, we made it, our luggage was there, and Nichole's grandma picked us up to take us to the cruise ship terminal. We hurried through customs, questionnaires, and other pre-boarding activities. When we finally got on the boat, we left out a huge sigh of relief... with only ten minutes to go!!! And then we were off to empty the mini bar in our room!
Day One: At Sea
We started the day with breakfast in our room (free room service!) on our private deck as we watched the sunrise over the ocean. Then we headed to the pool deck where we laid out and spent the day drinking Miami Vice's (1/2 Daiquiri and 1/2 Pina Colada). It was wonderful, until I realised later that I had burned. Even though I had 60 SPF on, the sun is intensified by the reflection off the ocean and the proximity to the equator. Oops.

Day Two: Cabo San Lucas
Today, we got to swim with dolphins!! It was so much fun! Our dolphin was Monet, a seven year old male who was found injured in the wild. He was a lot of fun. He did tricks for us, sang us a song, let us pet him and even took us for rides. Cool Dolphin Fact - they can sense when a person is pregnant and want to spend all their time with the pregnant person! What a way to find out, if you didn't previously know. We spent the rest of the day walking around the town, shopping, and we even got our hair braided into many tiny braids.
Day Three: Puerto Vallarta
Once again, we had breakfast on our private deck as the sun came up, and then got dressed for a day in town. We had to take a cab into the main part of the city. There was a beautiful white sand beach, lovely stores all over the place, and so much to do. We walked around, shopped, relaxed, and explored this wonderful city. Then we went on an excursion to Los Caletas. This is a place only assessable by boat. When we arrived, we were served an authentic Mexican dinner. It was so good. We ate and ate and ate. Everything was so delicious. Then we watched an authentic Aztecan ceremony. It was amazing! I think my mouth was hanging open during the whole show, I loved it! Then it was a boat ride back to the cruise ship and time to call it a night.

Day Four: Manzanillo
When I woke up and looked out our deck I was disappointed. Normally we have amazing views of the ocean, the coast line, or a cityscape. But not this morning. Instead, it was stacks and stacks of semi truck crates. It was a HUGE shipping yard. Oh well. After a shuttle ride for 15 minutes through the shipping yard, we were taken to the heart of Manzanillo. Nichole and I spent the day exploring the city, and getting lost in a true Mexican town. It was neat to leave the tourist section of the town and walk around in the "local" side of town. It was a mix of buildings I wondered how they were still standing, and new buildings. Laundry drying on porches, children in classrooms located between stores, alleyways with dogs, shrines to Mary, beautiful churches... It was amazing.

Day Five: At Sea
Today was pretty windy and a bit too cold to lay out on the pool deck. So Nichole and I spent the doing activities around the ship (there was never nothing to do!), eating the delicious food, and attending speakers on many topics. Even though we weren't in port, it was a great day.
Day Six: At Sea
It was finally warm enough to lay out in the sun. It was my last chance to try to even out my tan after burning my front side. I laid on my tummy the entire time we were in the sun, trying to make my white backside match the front. Once the sun went down, Nichole and I enjoyed our last dinner in the Vista Lounge and headed back to our rooms to pack up our bags.
Day Seven: Back in San Diego
It was sad leaving what had been our home for seven days. The people were so friendly. All it took was one time meeting you, and they had your name memorized. They would greet you by name when ever they saw you. I miss the sun. I miss the food. I miss the fun. I miss the service. I miss no-work. But it was nice to be home. Nice to be back in Joel's arms. Nice to back in my own bed. Nice to making money, not spending it. Nice to be back with my family. Nice to home.

So there you have it. A very brief recap of my cruise through the Mexican Rivera. I can't wait for my next cruise. People are wrong when they think cruises are for old people and boring; they are amazing! I can't wait for my next vacation.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Back from Vacation

I am back at work this morning after a week of cruising around the Mexican Rivera. It was the best week of my life so far. I feel so suffocated in jeans, long sleeve shirts, and socks. I want to be in a bathing suit and a dress, or tank tops and shorts. The weather was so warm and inviting. I miss sitting by the pool and tanning on the deck, eating extravagant five course meals every night, and unlimited room services. I really miss the sunshine. I am starting to believe I might one of the many individuals who suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder.

I was happy to be back in my own bed though. And my bunnies where very happy to see me too. Jack jumped over Katie and couldn't give me enough kisses. They are so sweet. Julie did a great job of taking care of my babies for me. It was strange to drive a car. I haven't done that in over a week. It seems to take me much longer to get everywhere, since I have to do it myself now. No more having everyone else take care of my every need. Rats.

Well, I better get going. I have a ton of catching up to do at work and my desk is piled with stuff. I will post pictures and stories very soon of my fun in the sun.

Thursday, April 3, 2008


Oh man, it is only 8:24am and already I have had one exciting morning!

First - I woke up late, again! I have been sleeping through my alarm and I have no idea how. I have it set for 5:45am and the buzzer sound. It is across my room, so I have to get out of my bed to hit snooze. Normally I wake up right before it goes off, but lately I have been sleeping though the obnoxious noise for an hour or so. So I woke up to sunshine and knew right away I had done it again. So I flew out of bed, threw on some clothes (I'm surprised I have clean socks on!), feed the bunnies and raced out the door.

Second - When I got to work, I had to help Charlie jump start the 95 van (I accidentally left the lights on yesterday so the battery was dead. Good thing the '92 van was around for me to drive home), then I had to make a fire cause Lee left after 2ND coating the stairs for a job and didn't start a fire (it helps the product dry faster and since he has already messed this project up several times, we need the darn things dry) but there wasn't any firewood in the shop. So I have take my little cart out back to the wood pile and drag some wood inside for my fire. There must have been some fumes in air, because when I started the blowtorch to start the fire, there was a REALLY big flame. I just kinda stood there for a minute... and then realised I was about to blow my self up. Oops. So I opened the big bay doors and turned on the venting fans (LEE!!!).

Third - I went inside to make coffee and as I was carefully measuring out the amount of grounds, I realised I was half an hour late to call Joel and make sure he was up. He has a big day today, and he was nervous that he might sleep late, so I offered to call and make sure he got up. He is interviewing for a full time position with Microsoft. He is working as a contractor, which means he actually works for Volt, who lends him to Microsoft for a year. At the end of the year, he is forced by Microsoft to take a 100 day vacation before he can start another contract with Microsoft. He is really excited since the full time job with Microsoft will be with the same team he is working with right now. This would be a great opportunity for him and he has studied really hard. I know he can do, but he was pretty nervous. So, half an hour after I said I would call, I called him. He was already up and showered, but he was worried I was sleeping late! Funny boy.

Fourth - Then Mom calls the house and tells me that, and I quote, "Your car doesn't like me anymore." With the way my morning is going (and the fact I have been ignoring a Check Engine light for the past month or so) I was afraid that some thing was really wrong. She had been trying to unlock the car for awhile but the stupid remote wasn't working. This has happened to me before and I just stand there and push it really hard over and over until the darn thing works. But for some reason it wasn't working for mom, and she was cold, and hungry. So I told her to use the key to unlock the car and brace and for the alarm. I walked her through the steps of popping the hood, finding the fuse box for the alarm, and pulling out the fuse. It was nutzy with all the noise of the alarm in the background and trying to work off a memory of the one time I had to do this before. But now Mom is eating breakfast with everyone, and will just use the key to lock the car.

I think I am ready for a nap. I have saved the day four times already this morning. Super heroes have it tough. Well, I better start to see what I can do for today. I have to get the office ready to function without me for the next week, as I leave for Mexico on Saturday!! Oh Boy!!

P. S. I believe it to be some unspoken rule that Chevy Vans (or any construction vehicle for that matter) is only able to receive AM Talk Radio or Classic Rock stations air waves. I found it ironic that no matter which van I drove, that seems to be all the radio can find to play. Oh how true the sterotype seems to be. :)

Have a great day everyone!

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Sleeping On It

Sometimes it is amazing what sleeping on a dilemma can do for yourself. I went to bed last night, feeling a bit better but not anywhere near wonderful. I woke up feeling better about my own predicament, easier about a dear one's troubles, and generally at peace with myself.

On a side note...Here is something funny for you all. So yesterday, my Mom was getting ready to leave for a quilting retreat. She and some friends go away to all sorts of resort/retreat like places bringing with them their sewing machines, irons, ironing boards, all the stuff you need to work on a project. It is quiet an ordeal, and she loves going on these trips. So she was backing out the shop driveway (there are two driveways at my parents house; one for the house, and another for the shop) so she was backing her mini van out of the shop driveway and somehow managed to run the mini van passenger side back wheel up the support wire for the telephone pole. She did some major damage to the wheel and parts of the car... dad could hardly get the minivan off the wire, let alone get the tire off (she completely shredded the tire!). So they took the minivan into Charlie's Autobody to see if she could still make the 6hr round trip to her sewing retreat. They said, "No way! That is too far to drive". So Mom was upset that she was going to miss her retreat and wouldn't be able to refunded for it.

I felt bad for her, so I offered to lend her my car so she could go. Yes that is right. My Mom is driving my car to the retreat and I am driving a 1995 Half Ton Chevy Van. It's one of dad's old work vans, it is huge, and a bit ghetto looking because he is trying to sell it. So it doesn't have a company logo on it, it has been sitting in the driveway at the shop so it is dirty and covered in tree debris. I get all sorts of double takes... like "Whoa - A girl is driving that thing!". I just smile and wave at them. I have to park on the street instead of my apartment building's parking lot, cause I can't get the thing in there. I went to Fred Meyer and parked in the middle of no where, cause I have no idea how to park that thing. I have run over, bounced over, parked on, and driven up many of the curbs in Bellingham. It cracks me up to be driving this thing around town. I wonder what people think when they see me. I notice I get a lot more cops following me... maybe they think I am a trouble maker in my ghetto van. Oh - and the van has no guts so I have to floor it and hope I can get up to at least 50mph before I hit the free way.

So if you need a pick-me-up today, just think of me in my ride!

Monday, March 31, 2008

I Don't Want This

I just want to crawl in bed and forget the world. I don't responsibility today. I don't want to face the past. I don't want to struggle. I don't want to fail. I don't want the stress. I don't want this, I don't want this, I don't want this.

But I did it anyway. I was hoping that it would all be finished today. I had a plan, and followed it through, but nothing was really resolved. I still have to wait. I still couldn't take any of the first steps. Nothing was fixed, everything is still teetering.

I am just tired of it all. All I can say, is it better be fixed before Saturday. Mexico I need relaxing.

Grief Is a Thief

Grief Is a Thief

Grief is a thief
you have urged
to take you away
but with your own
key locks you,
wet with tears,
inside your musty
woolen closet and
turns out the light.
Dark in your trap
shared with moths
you cry long past dry
and choke on all why.
When you know it's
time (and you will):
the closet open
into a room,burst
the room open
into a sky,
settle for no moons,
pray past all suns,
inhale from Cosmos.
Not earth are you
but the damp wick
of a future shining.
Strike your match
and light the way.

Alan Harris

This poem expresses my weekend better than I could.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Wish I Was Smarter

So our cabinet builder stopped by the office today and was explaining complication to Charlie about an upcoming job. I was working on something else, but listening to the conversation. Then, later in the day, I was listening to a debate on the radio about the democratic elections coming up and both speakers very incredibly interesting and well educated. This all got me thinking about my education. I don't think I am that smart.

Really, what did my Bachelors degree get me? Well, not much I guess. Especially since I have to learn how to do everything, it seems, for my job. I didn't learn how to write a Workers Fall Protection Plan, or even how to research and understand L&I laws, I don't have any accounting experience or education, I can't name all the countries, and honestly I am not even sure what name Russia is going by right now. I have no idea who are the State Senate or Legislative Representatives for Whatcom County. I don't even know off the top of my head what years the Revolution, Civil, or even World Wars started or ended. I know the general decades, but that is about it.

I started to think about what a Communications Degree is. Really I was taught the names and technicalities for the things we have learned how to do since birth. I have known how to communicate, but didn't know who developed the theories until I went to WWU. I am feeling depressed that my degree doesn't seem too real world applicable. Maybe if I was in marketing, journalism, or some field like that it would feel more suited. Why did I decide to get a Communication Degree? I am not excatly sure...

I wish that I was smarter when it comes to every day, real world stuff. Maybe I would be interesting if I could intelligently discuss current events, articulate my thoughts in a refreshing manner, or something along those lines. Maybe I should switch from reading fiction, and start to read non-fiction. Or is this a passing feeling of inadequacy and tomorrow I will be happy with my paperback edition of The Bell Jar. Who knows...

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

My Father's Daughter

I have turned into a walking, talking, spiting image of my father. I don't know if it is a result of spending 40+ hours a week with him, or if I was doomed to this fate from the moment I was born. Here are just a few of the ways I have become my father.

1. I listen to AM radio. Yep. I do. I listen to talk radio all day. I start my morning with the drive from Bellingham to Lynden and I listen to the morning news and talk show. Then I spend the first hour or two listening to music on my computer and then I switch over to a live-online version of am radio and spend the rest of my day listening to various republican talk shows. It is interesting to hear the different topics being debated, discussed, and thoroughly torn apart by various hard-core republicans. Sometimes I am irritated by what someone has said enough to turn the radio off, but typically it will last through my drive back to Bellingham.

2. I have a strong need to control. I usually express this need in terms of organization and cleanliness, but I am noticing it escape in other forms. For example my bi-weekly safety meetings. It drives me crazy when Charlie will start with the meetings off with schedule checks, and job updates... that is supposed to come after the safety meeting discussion and updates. But it makes me even more crazy when he talks over me or makes me skip the team building activity for the week. Then, guaranteed, two days later he will ask me why I didn't do some sort of team building activity at the bi-weekly meeting. Sometimes I want to pull my hair out. Although, I do have to admit the office is looking wonderful. It is actually taking on the look of an actual place of business, rather than just some desks and computers in a shop office. I am very proud of what I have accomplished so far.

3. I have to be on my own schedule - NOT someone else's. Growing up, my Dad would had this saying he would use when we would forget something at home when we left for school. "Poor planning on your part, does not constitute an emergency on my part." This saying used to drive me crazy! I was going to be in trouble if Dad didn't bring my flute to school soon, I don't want to hear a lecture, I want you to get in the truck and bring my flute! Today - I live by this rule. I like to organize my day around what I want to accomplish, and when Dad comes into the office and wants me to give him my undivided attention on ten different topics, I want to pinch him, jab his ribs and go back to my work. I have my own things to get done. Just because you can't remember how to attach a file to your email, doesn't mean I have to put everything aside until you feel better. ...actually I do, that's my job.

4. It's My Way Or The Highway. I really do want things done my way. I try to be open to suggestions, but really, deep down, I just want them to conform to what I have already thought out. This doesn't transfer over to all areas of my life (at least I would like to think so), but it definitely shows up at work. It drives me crazy when Charlie puts something where I don't want it, or he doesn't follow my instructions. His idea of putting something away is to just throw it on my desk. (aka - I put it away). It drives me bonkers because I hate things on my desk. I think that is why he does it. Or he refuses to label things. He says he will remember what it is, but a week later he will ask me what this file is doing on his desk. Oh brother! He also keeps trying to take over the corner of my desk that is next to his desk. So I went out into the shop and found a long stick and use it to push his stuff off my desk and onto the floor. One day he will learn to knock it off.

Of course these are just a few, but they are the most obvious. I can see how one might see these traits as negative, but I see them as positive traits when used appropriately and in moderation. This is my task: To learn how to control my need for control. (hows that for a control freak! ha ha)

Monday, March 24, 2008

Just Rambling

I so did not want to get out of bed this morning. It was so warm and cozy. I really do hate alarm clocks. It is much nicer to wake up to the sun, than it is to wake up to an obnoxious buzzing noise.

I have picked up my tickets for the Mexican Cruise, and the crazy thing comes in a little travel pouch, with all these forms I have to fill out, their own luggage tags, tips and don't forget items, and all this other stuff. It is nuts. I don't have much time left to get down to my "bathing suit ready body" but I keep working out double-time and hopefully it won't be that bad. I think the real shocker will be that much of my white body exposed at once. That is a lot of whiteness.

Joel and I were talking about criminals who are actually really smart because they have figured out ways to get around the system. If only they hadn't gotten carried away, they probably could have gotten away with it. The discussion took me back to the course at WWU on deviant behavior. It almost becomes an addiction, a thrill of sorts, to attempt the deviant behavior again and again, each time raising the stakes, increasing the thrill, until finally an error is made and the criminal is caught. For example, in the Redmond area, a person has figured out how to use a pre-paid Visa with only $1 on the card to pump not only his truck full of gas, but the five one-hundred-gallon drums in the back of his truck. This guy has done it about three times and gotten away with it. That is a lot of gas, for $3. It is almost tempting to give it a try with the prices of gasoline on the rise. Joel and I debated what he must be using all that gas for. I think the person is either a semi-truck driver (or some occupation where he drives a lot and has to pay for his own gasoline) or he is in on the deal with other people who pay him for the gas which he is getting illegally cheap. Joel thinks he must be storing it somewhere. The criminal must have a years worth of gasoline stored up in his garage by now. If there are any stories of a huge explosion in the Redmond area... I think we have found the gas thief.

Easter was fun. It didn't seem like as big of a celebration as in the past. Maybe it was the weather, maybe it was just me. I actually ended up working through my family's Easter celebration. I was trying to make up for lost time when I was home sick and we had bills to pay, paychecks to print, and invoices to enter. It actually takes me a long time to do those things. I just like to double and triple check everything I do. I don't want to make any mistakes when it comes to the business's money. On actual Easter Sunday, Joel and I slept in and later went over his parent's house for dinner. His mom had cooked this original Passover/Easter feast. The meal was complete with bitter herbs, unleavened bread, lamb and beef, double dipped vegetables, mortar, and something else that is escaping me at the moment. It was all very good. I was surprised to find that freshly grated horse radish tastes slightly sweet to me. Everyone else thought I was nuts, but hey-what else is new?

Oh boy! It is almost 8:00; the official Coffee Hour. I start work at 7:00am and I usually start by ready email for a bit. Then I check out Post Secrets on Monday mornings. Then I check to see if anyone has posted a new blog. Then I head over to the Herald to check out the local news and to see if any of my latest press releases have been printed. Then I decide if I want to add to my own blog, or if I would rather read the news. By the time I am finished it has nicely turned into 8:00, and it is time to head into the house. That is the nice part about working in the family business. I get to see my family members every day. I spend all day out in the shop office with dad, and for coffee hour and lunch, I go in the house, eat my parent's food, watch their TV, read their paper, and then head home. It is wonderful. During coffee hour, mom and I eat Cheerios for breakfast, work on the newest crossword puzzle, and chat about the latest family news. It is really nice to be able to talk with my parents everyday. They really are neat people. I am enjoying getting to know my parents as an adult. It is pretty neat.