31 July 2009

off through the new day's mist I run

What's that? you ask?

That. Is a Yard Monster.

Tree and I pulled it from its nest in the pine trees along the side of our back yard with the weird vampire neighbors (the other side has the cool neighbors who invited us to their cookout on the 4th of July). Actually, I'm not 100% sure they are vampires, but since I've yet to see any of them in the 8 months that we've lived here, I can only assume. I do know they own a small dog, though, who is sometimes out on their deck, so I guess they must not be the dog-eating kind. Unless the dog is the only one living there. In that case, bravo on teaching yourself to drive to the store to get dog food. Unless the dog ate the neighbors. Yikes...

Getting off topic. So the Yard Monster was a huge snarly viney grapey thing that was strangling like 4 trees to death. Plus it was a terrible eyesore. Tree brought home some pruning shears and we hacked and yanked and untangled and cursed for the better part of two afternoons - and there's still some left. Unfortunately, the previous occupants of our house (technically still the current owners as we are mere renters) never tried to cut the thing back. And obviously the next-door vampires/dog didn't do it either. In fact, the type of fence that separates that section of our yards (there are two different kinds of fencing on that side... sigh...) is such that I suspect the wild grape debacle was no accident.

But that part of the yard is definately coming along. We're going to pick up some blueberry bushes tomorrow and get them planted hopefully tomorrow afternoon, if the weather is ok. It's been raining something awful lately. One of our tomato plants (we only had 3) was killed in the vicious storm we had the other night. Luckily everything else was unharmed. The squash/zucchini/pepper plants are all doing fine, giving us a pretty decent return. Again, we didn't plant much because it's only the two of us here and this was our first garden, but I'm impressed! And we have so many great ideas for next year. The blueberry bushes we're planting tomorrow won't give us much, if anything, this season, but it will be nice to have berries next year. And they'll be covering up the nakedness created when we took out all the wild grape vines - the vampires' yard is overgrown, filled with junk, and just horrible, and I'd rather not have to look at it.

That was kind of snobby. :P

Well, that's pretty much it for now. Two days left of leave, then back to work. More stuff to do outside before I'm satisfied. We've got the cookout to plan for, and I know it's early, but I'm already gearing up for Halloween. And there are a whole list of recipes I want to try while we can take advantage of these fresh summer vegetables. Busy busy busy.


Side note: Tree was featured on My Sleeping Husband! (shhhh, he doesn't know) Go on over and take a peek.

"so seek the wolf in thyself..."

- Metallica "Of Wolf and Man" -

29 July 2009

and I ain't got no worries 'cause I ain't in no hurry at all

Haven't posted in awhile - I didn't realize it, but I needed to take a break and decompress. I'm currently on leave from work (day 8 of 12) and am feeling much, much better. I don't really want to get too much into it (I always say that, don't I?) so I won't, and instead look to better things and what has been nourishing me lately.

A quick rundown (I hate these lists):

- Tree's homemade lemonade, the best lemonade I have EVER tasted

- pulling vines/weeds/yard monsters out of the trees and lawn, and envisioning what a beautiful, welcoming space we will have once we're done

- picking and eating fresh tomatoes, summer squash, zucchini, and green peppers that Tree grew in our backyard

- visiting local farm stands and buying corn, blue berries, and carrots

- planning for Halloween (some projects I plan to try are a few sinister-looking Witch Jars for out on the porch and a whimsical, kid-friendly Witch's Cauldron for the front entryway - there are a lot of small children in my neighborhood...)

- continuing the process to purchase this lovely house that Jack built (despite its issues quirks - or perhaps because of - I am head over heels for this house)

- oh! and getting ready for the superawesome summer cookout we're having at the end of August; I can't wait to have everyone I care about, together, at our home

I guess that's really it! You could say I've done a whole lot of nothing on these days off, but sometimes it's the nothing that refreshes you to take on anything.

"well, if it rains, I don't care,
don't make no difference to me"

- The Doobie Brothers "Black Water" -

16 July 2009

cause I'm alive, so alive now

[untitled] by: Garden Variety Photographer

"I wanna run through your wicked garden,
heard that's the place to find you..."

- Stone Temple Pilots "Wicked Garden" -

14 July 2009

I'm gonna break my rusty cage and run

I really don't want to get into the whole knock-down-drag-out horrible thing, but here's a (kind of too long) summary (I'll try to be as impartial as I can but honestly, I'm still fuming) of my mindblowing (not in a good way) weekend:

Our entire purpose for going home this particular weekend (last weekend) was to attend my friend Julaaay's wedding Saturday evening. Julaaay and I worked together at Shaw's for several years and now only sporadically keep it touch, but I still consider her a friend. Anyway, we received the invitation for her wedding and RSVP'd several months ago (as in, this was not a spontaneous decision to go to the wedding).

Saturday was also the date of Tree's mother's big summer cookout/graduation party for her fiance's daughter, who recently completed hairdresser school. Tree's mother knew we had this wedding to go to when she planned her cookout.

So Saturday morning we went to Tree's mother's house to spend a little time with her while she got ready for the cookout. We called on our way over to see what she wanted for breakfast (bagels and coffee, also some for her fiance's daughter, who didn't even acknowledge our presence, much less thank us for bringing her breakfast... but I digress) and took it to her as she was getting ready for the day. We ate, chatted, said goodbye. The understand was, as we drove away, that we would stop by her cookout after the wedding was over. She knew the wedding started at 5 pm.

(Full disclosure: she also trimmed my hair a little, at her house, to fix a mistake the last hairdresser had made... which really just led to another mistake: allowing myself to become indebted to her by letting her trim my hair. Next time I'll stick with the shitty cut.)

We got dressed, met up with Yoshi and Sharty, drove to the wedding. It was beautiful, Julaaay looked like a princess, and it was really nice to spend time with the old Shaw's crew. I missed them more than I'd realized.

But everything kind of took a long time. After they were married, the guests enjoyed a cocktail hour while the official party posed for photographs. Then we went upstairs to the reception hall, the official party was introduced ("...and for the first time in public, Mr. and Mrs..."), the bride and groom's first dance, and so one. It wasn't until 7:30 when we were first being served the meal. Then the best man/maid of honor toasts, then cake cutting... then the bride's dance with her father, the groom's dance with his mother, the throwing of the bouquet and the taking-off-of-the-garter thing. Then dollar dances with the bride/groom, a conga line (!!) and so on and so on. It took awhile. And even after the "traditional" part of all of it, I was having a nice time dancing with my sister and Shaw's friends. But could you really just get up and leave in the middle of it? Oh look at me, getting ahead of myself.

So Tree's mother screams at him over the phone while we're still at the wedding (it was right after the food was served), freaking out that we weren't at her cookout yet. I guess she expected us to split the night between the two events? I don't really know because (a) she talked to Tree, not me, (b) Tree had actually been talking to his brother when she took the phone and started yelling, and (c) was evidently really drunk. At least, that's what everyone keeps telling me (like it's an excuse?). She went on about how important the cookout was to her, how important it was to her that we be there, and how she feels blown off because we weren't there already.

That left Tree in a shitty mood for the rest of the wedding, so thanks! I didn't really get to enjoy my night, either.

Before it got out of control and while I was still only mildly annoyed at her reaction to Tree and me ATTENDING A WEDDING WE'D PLANNED ON FOR MONTHS, I texted her to apologize that the wedding was running later than expected. I tried to call also, but both went unanswered. She also stopped taking Tree's calls, so when we got out of the wedding (around 10:45 pm) Tree texted his brother to see if anyone was still at the cookout and to let him know we were on our way (we first had to drop off Yoshi and Sharty).

His brother texted back that we shouldn't bother because their mother was "really mad" and that it would just "be a big scene." So I'm sure we were the talk of the stupid cookout. Whatever.

The next day Tree tried to call her to talk it out, she initially didn't want to take his call, finally talked to him. He drove over to her house (alone) and tried to explain how unreasonable it was for her to get upset when she knew we had the late wedding and we told her still stop by afterward but that it would be late. We even offered to go to eat with her Sunday night to make up for it (not that it was our fault, but just to smooth things over) but no, the cookout was "really important" and blah blah. She also told him we only call her when we need something (an unshakable desire to... bring her breakfast?) and that she feels like we put her on the back burner by not making time to go see her the way we do Tree's dad and my parents/sister. (Except Tree's dad and my parents/sister don't try to guilt us into breaking plans with other people to spend time with them.)

I just can't fucking win. We went to go see her before the cookout and offered swing by both after the cookout and the following evening to make up for missing the bulk of the cookout. Not good enough.

I understand she wants to spend time with us, especially since we've moved and aren't in MA very often, but she's going about it ENTIRELY the wrong way. Behaving like this just makes me want to go see her less, because now the next time we are there it's going to be awkward, and I just don't feel like being in that situation. I'm really too old for the drama.

So now we get to be the bad guys with everyone because we "blew her off." My life is fucking amazing.

That was an inappropriately long "summary." Well, I don't care. Suck it.

"you tied my lead and pulled my chain
to watch my blood begin to boil"

- Johnny Cash "Rusty Cage" -

06 July 2009

anyone can see my every flaw

Time for some early-summer reflecting...

So, a new baby and a new kitten - can you guess which one was a bigger deal?

I was perhaps a bit untruthful in my previous post when I said the kitten was to comfort Tree when my niece arrived; I find the little guy is comforting me as well. I won't lie and say a part of me feels left out of all the (fun?). My mom tells me about the adorable little booties she found in the attic that Yoshi and I used to wear. Yoshi wearily repeats her future M-I-L's most recent crazy declaration ("I would never tell my child Santa didn't exist, no matter how old they were. I would tell them Santa used to exist but that now he doesn't."). But then she has to go - The Little One needs to eat/be changed. Suddenly my artful arrangement of candles on my dining room table doesn't seem so captivating.

But quite honestly, I rationally don't want kids, like, full-time, if that makes sense. Like, today, I was searching for summer craft ideas online (more on this another time) and came across all sorts of cute things to make with a child. I was looking for more adult and permanent crafts, but the felt jungle and puppet theater made me a little sad. I would like little hands to help me cut the felt or pick out fabric! And I'd like my crafts to have some use, unlike the endless "good ideas" I've had (hand painted/stamped stone magnets, my WWII service trunk, handmade notecards, you can even throw Athena's in here...) that were superexciting for all of 5 minutes.

Wow, rereading, I kind of got away from what I was trying to say in that last paragraph. What I meant was, it would be great to help a child assemble a puppet theater, watch them put on a show or two (guess I'd have to help them make puppets, too), and then have them leave my house. Oh, but that's possible now that I'm an aunt, you say? Except I live 4 (or up to 7, depending on the hellish traffic jam that is the George Washington Bridge) hours away. And yes, Tree and I have talked about moving back home to be closer to family, but I was really unhappy in Massachusetts, and I don't want all my (adult) life decisions to be based on other's people's happiness while sacrificing my own (our own?). You know? My family is (I guess?) happy in MA, and who knows, maybe someday I'll want to return, but not right now.

Kind of getting off-topic again. Fuck! Anyway, maybe I could just volunteer at a preschool or a YMCA or something. Otherwise I fear I'm going to get overwhelmed by all the cool things I'm (missing out on?). Because I honestly do feel like I'm being left behind... I'll be 24 next month and Tree will be 26 in December...

TL;DR I'm torn on the whole "having a kid" thing. Fuck.

"I don't feel the way I've ever felt,
I know
I'm gonna smile and not get worried,
I try but it shows"

- Jimmy Eat World "Pain" -