getting in touch with my nerdy self & Courtney from the Bachelor

I’m sure the gods above are laughing now. A good few years wasted learning about law, poetry and woman’s health.  Well, we won’t say wasted. {sorry dad!}  Off-track maybe so. I’m NOTORIOUS for exhibiting curiosity for multiple subjects. Have always been that way. Sort of like adult ADD, which I stated in my last post, apparently does not exist in adults. {Okay, Kevin, you win: for stating that I am somewhat of a hypocrite in my posts.} So now my newest interest is graphic design. Yep. I said it. Nerd to the fullest. Watch out.

So this is my first time using Illustrator and if you have half a brain, you know it’s not the easiest thing in the world to do AND it’s my first time diving into this elaborate design software. I would now usually say something like, “winning!” but that annoying model Courtney Robertson from The Bachelor quickly forced me to remove that word from my vocabulary as she is the epitome of a self-absorbed, narcissistic, blustering, bitch of a person. {How do I REALLY feel? ha.} I mean, that show cannot be real. And if Ben was anywhere near close of a real person, he wouldn’t be degrading himself on that “reality” show. I know he’s partially from Sonoma so I’m supposed to support him but come on.

My first illustrator project in under 10 minutes

Can we all agree that if we had the chance we would tell Courtney where to promptly put that rose? {wink}


Since No One Else Is Talking About It… Full Version

“Modern medicine is a negation of health. It isn’t organized to serve human health, but only itself, as an institution. It makes more people sick than it heals.” – Ivan Ilich

Our society has a major malfunction: the inability to relate to the unknown. It makes people extremely uncomfortable. It’s easier to convey a rather trite (sorry. Actually, I’m not sorry) yet very relevant  disease like breast cancer, AIDS and even organizations like D.A.R.E. to a community. Yet somewhere between children’s leukemia and men’s prostate cancer, we forget about a major, unyielding cyclone that is affecting more adolescents then Justin Beiber. And that parasite is drugs.

It’s a destructive monster that engulfs every aspect of your life, including your family. It ruins everything in its path, beckoning you to flirt with the happiness and numbness that it provides with– sometimes–  just one try.

A major reason why I wanted to dive head first into this depressing atrophy, is because of New York Times Best Selling author Ellen Hopkins. Hopkins is somewhat of a savior to children and young adults of my generation because she addresses the growing epidemic of drug use in our society. In her Crank trilogy, which features Crank, Glass and Fallout, she describes the way drugs (mainly crystal meth, or methamphetamine) took over her daughter’s life. In her daughter’s words. The way she reaches children all over the world with her words is indescribable, and is best depicted by this short excerpt from Crank:

Just Before The Drop

“You know how you
stand and stand and stand
in line for the most
gigantic incredible roller
coaster
you’ve ever dared attempt.

Anticipation swelling,
minute by minute by minute,
you choose to wait even
longer, to ride in the front
car
and finally it’s your turn.

They buckle you in, lock the
safety bar with a jolting clunk!
Hook engaged, the chain jerks
you forward. You start to
climb
Crank-crank-crank.

Cresting the top, time
moves into overtime
as you wait for that scant
hesitation, just before you
drop
You know how you feel
at that instant? Well, that’s
exactly how it feels when you
shake hands with the
monster.”

Some reviewers relish the fact that they believe her work is merely glorifying the use of drugs, and that it de-sensitizes children to it and does not portray the effects drugs really do have. I have to disagree. Hopkins is reaching out to adolescents who might be too scared to ask questions– and simply in that she is raising awareness. And we all know raising awareness is the first step to making a change. Children who are not able to distinguish fantasy from reality (or rather right from wrong) should indeed not read this book. On the other hand, many schools carry her books and are used to teach various methods such as verse, poetry, and assonance.

Before we slip into book review reverie,  I want to bring up another issue that is seldom discussed. Mostly because prodigious drug companies make sure of it.

Prescription drugs.  Are they more addictive (and more widely a problem) than the dirty crystal meth and black tar heroin that we’ve all grown up to know as “dirty” and “disgusting” and think “I don’t know ANYONE who does that, and don’t hang around it.”  The problem with prescription drugs, is it’s much easier to circumvent and justify why you “need” them. Not to mention a professional doctor actually diagnosed you with Aderall. (Can we all agree most adults do not genuinely exhibit ADD?) I know ADD is detrimentally overprescirbed to children, as well. I feel like drugs are viewed as so: Heroin to prescription drugs is a run down shack to a mansion in beverly hills. But the mansion has a mask on. Prescriptions are socially accepted. Heroin is not.

We’re becoming genetically programmed to believe we cannot exist without some form of instant gratification. I clearly remember when I got my first digital camera. The belief that one could see the picture instantly after it was taken was amazing! And the whole world agreed. Everyone is trying to get ahead. Then it was smart phones, to make sure you had the world at your fingertips. Then it was Steve Jobs, coming in with all sorts of technology that made it possible to achieve almost anything from a voice command  to your iphone.  DVR’s so we don’t miss a single show, planning for planning, the busy lives of regular families, school, carpool, sports, bills, jobs, etc. News gets delivered to our phones and we do not sit down and read the newspaper anymore. No one takes vacations without turning their phone off. Try once, TURN IT OFF. See what happens. Just when we thought we had it all, we can basically now drive a car without even really paying attention. Monster energy drinks supposedly make a third-quarter net income of $56.5 million. That’s based on the fact that they have tons of endorsements and they sell the drink like it’s guaranteed to get you laid. You have determined you cannot perform without your superficial energy drink.

Pharmaceutical companies are a multi-billion dollar organization. Some people who work there probably make millions of dollars per year.  What do you think drives them to this wealth? Anything in particular they do to keep rolling in the dough? Stop prescribing? Stop enabling? Tell doctors’ offices to start telling patients to see a homeopathist instead? No. People want a quick fix. They don’t want to change their lives, their priorities, their plans. They just want a little yellow pill in the morning and a blue one at night.

In Food Matters, a documentary essentially about ‘you are what you eat’ and loosely based on Socrates quote “Let thy food be thy medicine and thy medicine be thy food” further defends my theory on pharmaceutical companies: “Good health makes a lot of sense. But it doesn’t make a lot of dollars. Modern medicine revolves around ‘a pill for every ill’ and that’s the way the sickness industry wants to keep it.”

No one wants to make healthy choices for dinner because it takes too long and they don’t have enough time. Hamburger Helper (or worse, fast food) is all they know. But that’s a whole other tragedy.

And as long as we remain this LAZY, those pharmaceutical companies will soon take over the world — if they have not already. So as long as people are content with those yellow and blue pills, nothing needs to change.

Which brings me back to instant gratification. For most, we need caffeine in the morning to jumpstart our day, and _____________ (insert alcoholic beverage of choice here) to wind down the evening. For some, merely caffeine alone does not adhere to our needs, and, lucky for them, their colossal insurance company Blue Cross is more than happy to provide them with such resources. It’s a stigma, left for the patient to drown in while the doctor is glorified for their intelligence and understanding. Greed has overcome their offices. And the genuine care for a patients health and well-being is left on the back burner while money and recognition is crucial. The problem with Rx’s is they simultaneously help you get through the day while also enabling you to become more dependent on them. Remember that feeling in the poem, “… just before the drop?” Well, that can be achieved without the help of Vicodin, unbeknownst to many.

Soon, you can’t get up in the morning without antidepressants to clear the void in your mind, and the pain relievers for a back injury you sustained years ago. One which would be healed adequately through exercise, physical therapy and some massages here and there.  Then you blindly accept “necessary” pills for anxiety and ADD so you can float through your entire day without ever having to have felt any authentic feelings that you need to be healthily alive. All for these non-existent ailments.  Yet you are so happy and accomplished, it’s hard to see what you’re doing wrong.

Before we embark on this petrous path I want to make it immensely clear that I believe some people do actually NEED medication.  Cancer patients, people with HIV, people who are diagnosed with clinical depression or multi-personality disorder.  I am not completely insensitive.  And for those who actually depend on this medicine to live, I sympathize and cannot imagine what it would be like.

Although, relying on drugs to keep you alive (ha, that’s somewhat ironic) and not just for recreational purposes such as “I get so much done in my day” “I can’t live without it” “I am a full time mother” “I am a full time student” “I am a full time plumber” “I am a full time lawyer.” It doesn’t matter. Most medicine is being over-prescribed. It’s abuse when you rely on drugs to make it possible to sleep at night from all the drugs that kept you awake during the day. I can’t tell you how many kids I knew in college who were prescribed aderall to “get through exams” or xanax because they were “stressed.” I certainly don’t condone it, but people who take a xanax on a plane for fear of it going down is different then people who are prescribed a daily dosage of it when it is clearly not imperative to their health or well-being.

So, are prescription drugs indeed more dangerous than drugs like Crystal Meth, Heroin and Cocaine? All the drugs we were taught to stay away from because it will eventually lead you to a very dark place? Literally. In an alley way with the other vagrants not unlike yourself?  True, it will take you there. But prescription drugs aren’t so different. Here is a short excerpt from The Sun magazine, about a woman who avows her battle with prescription drugs:

“In college you start to have unpredictable panic attacks: sweating, dizziness, stomach cramping, feelings of impending doom, the need to return to your home immediately. The doctor prescribes Zoloft (an anti-depressant) daily and Xanax (an antianxiety drug) as needed. Now the panic attacks are less frequent but you feel a pervasive sense of numbness and gloom. Then come the headaches and insomnia. Maybe a different antidepressant will work better, the doctor says. Try Paxil. That’s good for anxiety, too. But you can barely tolerate the disorientation and double vision. Let’s see how you do on Remeron.… and you still can’t sleep without nightmares. Try some antipsychotics for the nightmares and some Neurontin (an antiseizure medication) for the headaches. You gain 30 pounds in a few months… Maybe some amphetamines will help you lose that weight. Phentermine slims you down, but you start having diarrhea every day. Getting through college is proving to be much more difficult than you thought. The antiseizure medication makes you feel like a zombie. You’re always tired, but you can’t sleep. Valium, Sonata, Ambien – none of them help. Instead they make you hallucinate. You try to kill your sisters dog with a cane because you see him for the malevolent alien he really is. Topomax (for the headaches and depression)… You can’t study because when you try to read, the words are screaming inside your brain… On top of that, your thyroid has become imbalanced, and you need to take hormones for it. Your mood spirals downward. Maybe you have an undiagnosed case of ADD. Try some Aderall. You chip a few teeth from clenching them so hard. You begin contemplating suicide again…Wellbutrin …Celexa … Bleeding stomach ulcers and kidney stones. You drop out of college and gain 40 pounds from Seroquel, the only drug that let’s you sleep… You start believing you aren’t really real. But, hey, at least you no longer suffer from panic attacks.”

– Jenny B.

After I took massage therapy classes years ago, it taught me that so much can be achieved without the help of western medicine. At the time I thought my hippy, barefoot, linen wearing teacher had lost it.  Herbs? Natural remedies? I wasn’t buying it.  And that’s probably the problem with everyone else. And it makes me think, did this author ever try a nice long walk? A hike? Watching the waves or the sun set? Meditating?  No matter how cliche these ideas are, there’s a REASON you see that old 94 year-old man practically crawling down the sidewalk putting all his welfare into his walker. You might think, “He’s an idiot! Go back to the nursing home, you’ll get lost.” But the old wise man knows it’s because sunshine and exercise will bring clarity, happiness and good health.



CATCH MY DRIFT?

This morning I woke up with cold feet on the wrong side of the bed. I had a dream I was all dressed up with no where to go and was all bent out of shape.

It felt like I was having deja vu, since the night before I was stood up after mygirlfriend found out I had just cheated on her with her best friend.

I really just wasn’t happy, to be quite frank. I know beggars can’t be choosersbut I really got the short end of the stick on this one. I made an ass of myself, basically.  I was determined to take it with a grain of salt so I took life into my own hands.

I burst out of bed, balls to the wall and brushed the chip off my shoulder. I was cool as a cucumber. I threw on some clothes, near and dear to my heart and left my house with nothing up my sleeve. It was now or never. I was hungry so I made sure to pick the low hanging fruit on an apple tree nearby. I didn’t have a plan, no rhyme nor reason,  so I decided to play it by ear.

Soon, I was in the lions den. Sirens blared by me as I saw a sign that read “absolute power corrupts absolutely.” Looking over my shoulder at the piss poor vagrants I thought– and if I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a thousand times– “I wouldn’t piss on your teeth if they were on fire!”

I was scared to death and wanted to be safe rather than sorry and got the hell out of dodge. I felt like I was the pot calling the kettle black, who am I to call reign supreme? I didn’t have a dollar to my name, really. Why am I airing my dirty laundry, anyway?

Knowing I didn’t have countless hours before I would most likely be kicked to the curb I engulfed my labor of love and did my good deed for the day. I was going to grab the bull by the horns and forget about the existential angst of my long lost love.

Life’s a bitch, right? Lighten up, I told myself. These things happen, it’s the same old story. Boy meets girl, there’s a meaningful relationship, a twist of fate- and, although it takes two to tango- we were both young and foolish.

I was inexorably drawn to fly the coop.

I was a kid in a candy store. Basically took a trip down memory lane and broke her heart. I was caught red-handed with her best friend, and that really got her goat.  But she was like my ipad to me as Steve Jobs was to technology, to tell you the truth. I didn’t want to throw in the towel just yet.

Needless to say, neither girls are my number one fan. Yes, you live and learn, but she thought we had stuff that dreams were made of. For me, I was going to have to start from scratch and start looking for my own place like there was no tomorrow. My ex-girlfriend was one in a million, and to her, there were plenty of other fish in the sea. You could cut the tension with a knife. Or five.


Cutcoknivesreview.com

She was ready to get in the sack with some smooth talking, armchair quarterback who didn’t know her OR me. So even though I was back in the saddle, it goes without saying I wanted to give a last ditch effort.

You know what they say, the road to hell is paved with good intentions, and that’s what I planned on saying to her, with a dozen red roses. You live and learn. I know I was on thin ice, but what are you gonna do? She was out of town, and when the cats away

Sidebar: Cutco Cutlery is not affiliated with this site, however, I encourage you to purchase through them for your kitchen supplies. Any other brand is just not worth even considering. (Click here to be utterly amazed and to get some great holiday gift ideas.)


Love and Marriage {go together like a horse & carriage?}

Credit: priorengagementblog.com 

I have always considered marriage as the most interesting event of ones life, the foundation of happiness or misery.”

-GEORGE WASHINGTON, letter to Burwell Bassett, May 23, 1785

I’d say most women grow up dreaming of their wedding day. What will the wedding dress look like? Who will be their bridesmaids? What color dresses will THEY have? Location, food, music, flowers, guests, seating charts, finances, cake, rehearsal dinner, gifts, thank you cards, ceremony, and most important, who will be the groom? [Think Jaws soundtrack.]
All that literally makes my head spin. (Think modern day Exorcist. I am falling off my chair from the sudden motion… really.)
And I’m sure someone reading this might think, with no doubt whatsoever, “She is afraid of commitment.” But they’re wrong. I’ve lived happily with my boyfriend for three years now and all is gravy. We have tattoos of each others initials.  I figured I could always say “KJC” means “Kingston Jewish Council,” “Kinabatangan Jungle Camp” or “Knoxville Juggling Club.” The possibilites really are endless. [Wink.]
I have a hard time believing the real reason people get married these days. The statistics speak for themselves. About 50% of marriages end in divorce. Which leads me to believe people ARE NOT getting married for the right reasons. Or they’re getting married too young, which is actually proven fact. [Don’t believe me? Look at this site.]
What are the fundamentals of a long lasting relationship? Trust? Communication? Love? Respect? I don’t believe marriage is one of them. Now, don’t get me wrong. I do agree with the idea of marriage, when it’s for the RIGHT reasons. I someday will get married. My point is, I feel like a lot of people get married as somewhat of a crutch so they don’t have to face what is really happening. Like it’s the next step in being happy. Like people tend to do with children. “Let’s have a baby. It will fix our problems.” Although people don’t admit it, they are doing it. I used wonder why these people were so gullible, so naive, so anxious. And then it hit me: Our society looks at marriage as the “norm.” People who are married are on the right path. They’re taking the next step in the right direction. If it’s not for the right reasons, though, they’re in for a big surprise. I hate to sound pessimistic, but I’m being totally honest.

Credit: Times Union

I’m sure other women have the same ideas about marriage as I do. As for the others, who feel the need to fall so deep into a non-existent world of a perfect relationship, do they ever ask themselves: who is this wedding and marriage for? It’s sad to me that so many young couples feel the need to provide a lavish show for hundreds of people whom many they barely even know. Who is it for?
It started so long ago there isn’t even a record of the first “marriage.” There are records of the first rules and regulations regarding this “holy matrimony” or “wedlock.”  It was made for people who wanted to publicly show their commitment to each other, whether it was for legal, social, libidinal, emotional, economic, spiritual or religious reasons. And a lot of marriages were arranged, back then. It still applies to people in South and Southeast Asia, Africa and the Middle East. Not to be confused with “forced marriage” where the person can force you to marry them (um, sounds the same to me.)

Credit: Yourlovetips.com

I wonder if it would be better for an arranged marriage then for some people to get married on their own.  People feel they need to validate their relationship with marriage. What’s that about? Getting married is for you and your partner. No one else. If you’re having doubts, ask yourself this: If you could do whatever you wanted– regardless of what anyone said, did or thought– what would YOU chose to do? Once you have answered honestly, decide whether or not it’s really what you truly want.
Just because you’re in love (and even have a family) it doesn’t necessarily mean you are obligated to tie the knot. Our society needs to get a grip on this concept. It’s becoming more and more common, and shaming or looking down on people because of it is absolutely ludicrous. And medieval.
Looking at statistics for all this can also be seen here and here (humor me and look at the latter, which I chose purely for entertainment, Bible News, which has a rainbow colored theme.)
Just because you are married, doesn’t mean you have somehow magically erased all problems regarding infidelity. If you’re not happy, you’re not happy. If you think a wedding ring and a signed document will keep yourself (or partner) from straying if you are not satisfied in your relationship, think again. If someone is going to cheat, they’re going to cheat. It has nothing to do with whether or not they are married. (Well, I take that back. Maybe it does, to an extent. But only monetary-wise.)
A lot of people think if you have a marriage, you have a good foundation and tangible proof that you will succeed. I couldn’t disagree more. It all depends on this marriage. Married young? Had kids right away? Husband goes to work for the family business and wife can do the rest? She doesn’t really have a choice… but does she care? 20 years down the road she probably will. And then her life will have passed her by.
What about the person who dates regularly, travels the world, and carries out their dreams? Makes a living by something they’re passionate about? Finds someone they want to spend the rest of their lives with? After discovering who they are as individuals, and merging the two, to make an incredible long-lasting relationship consisting of TWO people, (to clarify, one and one make two, not one.) THAT is the relationship I will place my bet on.
Know who YOU are, and know who YOU want to be by your side for the rest of your life.
Marriage isn’t for anyone else, it should be for you and your partner. Don’t get married to fix something, get a dog. Or a therapist. Don’t get married for anything other then you want to spend the rest of your life with this person, period.

CHILDREN: The Circle of Life and The Art of Patience

The little guys checking out a fellow playmate's truck from "Cars."

Webster’s Dictionary says the definition of a “child” is: A very young or recently born person. Our of sheer boredom during nap time I looked up synonyms for “children.” This is what I got: anklebiter, bambino, little angel, moppet, (what?) small fry, squirt, whippersnapper. These can all definitely define the two youngsters I consider my pseudo children. They are two and three, just 12 months apart.

Just when I think I might have “had it up to here” (mother’s line from when I drove her crazy) the three year old says “Hey! look at that girl! She has the same sweater on that you wanted to buy at Target!” (His memory and attention to detail is uncanny.) And the younger one exclaims in a voice so giddy and sweet you want to squeeze him, “Ariel, I love you so much!” ‘Ariel’ of course being a new word, slowly transitioned from ‘Ayo’ which just melts my heart– a feeling only a parent or (pseudo parent) would understand.

The two kids who were screaming and fighting over Lightning McQueen like it was the last toy on earth are now watching me in awe as I sing in the car to Radiohead’s “Freak” (ironically, not unlike how I feel at the moment) and claim they “like this song!” What do you know? A new lullaby.

If you think you knew anyone with bi-polar tendencies, have kids. They are on a sliding scale of one extreme to the other, and trying to predict their mood would be like trying to predict the weather.

I’m sure you’ve seen those mom’s who seem supercool under any circumstance… So “put together” and perfect. I wonder if they are on some sort of medication. I wonder if they have some sort of chip in their children’s brain to make them behave extremely well. I once knew a child, we’ll call him James, and he was so extremely polite and had the manners of an 80 year old man. He would have pulled my chair out for me if he physically could. But his parents were very strict. They probably had him reading Shakespeare as soon as he could say “Hamlet” and were undoubtedly preparing him for S.A.T.’s as soon as he entered kindergarten.

That’s all fine and dandy but where was James’ CHILDHOOD? Kids need to be able to scream and yell and run like mad up and down the hallway. They need to get sandy, fall in the dirt and skin their knees on the grass.  I feel like if you don’t let kids be kids, they’ll forever be aching for some sort of worry-free childhood they were never given.

We’ll see James someday, at 45, swinging from monkey bar to monkey bar at the park with no kids of his own in sight. And parents will be cautiously aware of this fact and keep their own children in close proximity.

I’m so glad that most parents I know today are letting their kids milk the hell out of their childhood. Not to the point of spoiled brats who don’t say please and thank you. LET YOUR CHILDREN BE CHILDREN. And my little two year old, today, by the way, burped and said “excuse me.” Not to brag, but what two year old do YOU know says that?  Their parents balance play time, calm time, healthy food and TV time all perfectly. It’s so hard to do this day to day, with a massively busy lifestyle, but in the grand scheme of things, it’s a job well done.

No matter how many times children scream in your face, disobey, run away, or throw up on you (yes, that happened today. Toddlers throw up… so after the newborn phase is over, don’t get too excited.) You still love them unconditionally. Because they are going to be the next generation’s ruler’s of the world. And we want them to be smart! And listen to Radiohead!

You have to remember they have only been around for a very short time, as “recently born” people. What were you doing 3 years ago? Celebrating Obama’s victory into presidency? Beginning an unhealthy addiction to the Twilight series? Mourning over Heath Ledger’s death? Picketing gas stations? Doesn’t seem too long ago, yeah? That’s my point. These little guys have barely been around. And although it sometimes FEELS like they’re purposely TESTING your patience, it’s ultimately up to you to decide how far you’re going to let them carry on with their little shenanigans.

I mean, really. Do you think your two-year-old wakes up every morning in his crib, yawns, stretches, and says (looking at the clouds and birds painted on his baby blue wall) “Today I’m going to create an environment that resembles a day in HELL for my mom and dad! Yay!”

Moral: Let children be children, but keep them healthy (even if it means they’re going to literally cry over their leafy green consumption– because if it were up to them they’d be fully satisfied with gummy bears and chocolate) and teach them morals and manners. Happy children, with happy childhoods, grow up to be productive members of our society.


Almost Perfect

Before you read, I just wanted to put it out there that this post is “Almost Perfect” because it’s from my phone. Someone at Cox decided it would be funny to turn my internet off indefinitely.
Damn Cox.
End disclosure. 😉

Do you see those couples who look like they’re just perfect? Agree on anything? Favorite book, favorite food, favorite movie, etc. “Oh-em-gee! Bruce and I just LOVE Paris in the fall!” Umm, who doesn’t?

I’m the last person to give advice on relationships, I don’t have a masters in psychology (thank god.) But I DO know what its like to have a HEALTHY relationship. It’s okay to have qualms with each other. It’s okay to not agree on what to eat for dinner! RIP Russell Armstrong, but his wife Taylor said she’d literally agree with him on everything! To what to eat for dinner, to bigger things like vacation spots and which house to live in, or where to send their kid to school. (Okay, I made up that last one, but it seems like a good example, yeah?)
The boy and I have the hardest time with food. Considering we both like to cook and like totally different stuff. That’s okay though! You have to be able to be a little opinionated. I love watching Adrienne and Paul (Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, from now on, RHOBH.) bicker back and forth because it reminds me of the boy and me. We’re totally like that. We’re not that couple mentioned above who puts on an array of gestures and laughs to prove to outsiders they’re not secretly trying not to kill each other in their sleep. I’m completely real in my relationship. And proud of it. What you see is what you get. And I know there’s a time and place, but we don’t ever fight or disagree so badly that people feel uncomfortable… (Friends, back me up here?) And that rings true when we’re in the privacy of our own home. We just don’t argue that much. I mean, we do, constantly, but not for long. We nip it in the bud.

Hold it all in and you’ll have a nuclear explosion from here to Hong Kong. No joke. Arguing over little, trivial things is one thing, but if you find yourself constantly disagreeing (think battling, like WWIII in your kitchen) on these three things, you’re in trouble: finances, religion, and morals. Those have been the staples for something you should agree on from the beginning. Not like, 2nd-date-beginning, but pretty damn early on.

Also, if you find yourself spending so much energy on trying to find a balance, take a long hard look at what exactly you’re fighting for. Relationships are a lot of work! Throw in kids and mortgages, and be prepared for overtime. But– realize if it’s for the long haul, like, till death long haul– you better be happy. Or working on being happy. (Tip: if you’re “working” on being happy for more than, oh, I’d say three years, time to move on.) Life is too short.
Geez! I need a big glass of wine after that one! Talk about exhausting! Imagine the couple who “likes” to argue! You know, the ones who fight over and over but seem to enjoy the drama? Not my cup of tea.

Someone should come up with “Relationship Insurance.” You know, like we have for other important things in our life like our health and our houses and cars?
Wait– I think they do– isn’t that what pre-nups are for?

Posted with WordPress for BlackBerry.


DIEGO

Am I one of those annoying people who love their dog more that life itself? Yes. Am I one of those annoying people who treat their dog like a human? Yes.

Therefore, I have created a picture timeline of the 15 months the little man has been with us. Am I going to print these and line them up on my staircase? No. When I get a staircase, you best believe I will.

"I'm about six weeks. These guys picked me up from my farm and washed me in a bucket and drove me 'home.' Still not quite sure about them. Of course I'm trepidatious... wouldn't you be if some strange people picked you up and washed you in a bucket?"

"My parents put towels under me wherever we go. Don't they understand I'm peeing on purpose to mark my spot? Another annoyance: people won't stop talking about my damn eyes. Yes, they're blue. Oh no? You've never seen a Shepherd with blue eyes? Yes, I'm a quarter Husky, that's why. Ohhh, now you see? I'm making a hit list in my mind. See you when I'm grown, bitch."

“Circa 8-10 weeks? Not quite sure. I spend a lot of time sleeping.” 
Guard dog in training. Once he grows up to the door knob we’ll be confident in his abilities as a massively aggressive German Shepherd with killer instincts and lion-like tendencies.

"Sup guys. This is my new backyard. I like to kick it here with Biscuit n Gravy (my neighbors, two bulldogs.) I'm really starting to grow into myself and learning all sorts of new things. Like shoes and balls and all the treasures in the garbage can..."

"So this is my first road trip. I slept the whole time practically... pretty boring. I don't know why mom and dad talked the whole time and laughed about everything and it was so stupid. Nothing funny whatsoever. They're suck dorks. I hid."

"Mom likes to hug and kiss me a lot. Since they got me when I was just 6 weeks I think they're my REAL mom and dad. Therefore I am quite attached. No matter how much they bug me and squeeze me and talk in weird voices to me."

He is starting to resemble a dingo. His ears are huge and we're not quite sure if/when he'll grow into them. Anyway, this was Dingo's first excursion to Northern California, Dillon Beach. He was wondering why the water was so excruciatingly cold. I had to explain to him the difference in temperature coincides with where you are in the world, the moon, the tides, the sun, etc. He was very interested.

"Mom and Dad finally threw me a bone for christmas. And I got a bed too. I never sleep in the bed, considering the couch is MUCH more versatile for my liking. Dad threw this into the garage and says it's my 'new' bed but they've got another thing coming. I don't care HOW much I shed and drool on 'their' couch. Dog beds are for suckers."

"Dad likes to 'fake' give me a beating. He likes to know he's in charge. Just smile and nod... that's what I tell all my buddies. Parents forgive you. They love you too much to stay mad. Especially my parents. I play them like a deck of cards."

Diego's favorite park, right by our house. This sufficed until we moved and now have a huge yard. Look at this head shot... whatta stud!

"This is the most recent pic of me. So I'm about a year and 2 months now. I frequently help mom in the kitchen when she's cooking (or dad if he's bbqing) because I find they're quite sloppy and drop food ALL the time. So, being the gentleman I am, I swiftly take care of it for them. Cause that's just the kind of guy I am. Tip: It's not begging if you're not asking. You're simply waiting on an opportunity. Smart business plan if you ask me."


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