Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Observations on craigslist

~Lots of people buy glass dining room tables with terrible looking chairs to match. And then try to sell them on craigslist for way too much.

~You need to post a picture with your listing.

~The over sharing going on there is hysterical. So many people go into all this personal information that truly has little to do with the actual listing. Cracks me up every time I read someones life story on a listing for a couch or table.

~The spelling mistakes crack me up too. One of my favorites was a listing that only said "Cardenza". I am sure they meant credenza. Proofread people!!

~It also cracks me up when they post pictures of the items to be sold with about twenty pounds of crap all over it. You can't even see the actual item to be sold!!

~The sheer amount of floral couches in this world is astounding. Where did floral couches go after the 90's???

~Love it when the title of the listing says "DIVORCE SALE" or something else along those lines. I guess this one goes back to the over sharing.

~Go check out the free section. Always something surprising there!!

~There is some ugly stuff out there. Like really ugly.

I love craigslist. I really do. After trolling it for months for different things, you start to notice things. What have you noticed about it?

Thursday, March 25, 2010

It got me thinking....

A few days ago, I read this post by my friend Emily.

I thought, what a fantastic idea!! I want to do that!

And then I started to think. What would my five lives be?

I kept thinking. And I couldn't really come up with anything.

I mean, I had these vague ideas, like live in France and do.........something french?

Or, become a part of a non-profit somewhere and help them do........something?

I was shocked. I could not come up with anything concrete. I thought about what I wanted to do when I was in high school: become a Marine Biologist so that I could train and swim with dolphins. And that idea was nixed very quickly once I knew how much science was involved with that one.

But. I do want to go back to school. I want to expand my french skills. I want to take history classes and then go BE where those things happened. When my children are grown and on their own, I want to be involved in doing things in my community, and maybe even worldwide. Maybe take piano and music classes at college.

I wonder, what does this lack of desire, this lack of not knowing what I want to do mean? Does it mean that I am so involved in my current responsibilities that I haven't even thought about it? Or does it mean that I have no direction? I have no idea. But now that I know that I don't know, I am going to think about it more. Give myself a good year or two to figure out what I want to do. A few years back, when I was sharing with my husband my desire to work once the kids were gone and out of the house, he said something along the lines of "if you're going to work, you should make it more than just a job". Meaning he thinks I should volunteer, or work with a non-profit or do something to make a difference rather than just work to earn money. (which is still good, obviously, but I think he feels we won't have to worry about that. which I guess we will see when we get there.)

With my youngest starting school in September (that day I will be doing a dance of joy. some people cry when they take their kids to school, I send them off with a smile, and skip happily away.) I hope to be able to start on this road of 'what I want to do when I grow up'. Yes, I am a mom. And, as my therapist said to me yesterday, I seem to be doing a pretty good job. But all moms are more than a mom. They have hopes, dreams, aspirations, goals....and not all of those center around their children or family. So, I am off to find those things for myself.

Wish me luck!!!!!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

I did it!!!

The last few weeks, I have been attempting to run at the gym. I have never been a runner, and struggled in school to complete the mile regularly. I don't have asthma, but really have struggled to breathe well while running. (perhaps the smog in LA county had something to do with it?????)

I started doing a run/walk thing on the treadmill. Run for a few, and then walk and catch my breath. And do it as much as I could for my 30 minutes of cardio that I do. On the treadmill, my left hip also starts hurting, and I am limping off the treadmill. I usually have done the elliptical, mostly because I don't lose feeling in my feet near as soon, and I feel that my body moves so much smoother on it.

This morning I got to the gym, and I had my pick of the treadmills. I turned on my MP3 player (which has Glee plus a few songs my husband sings on it) and started to warm up. And I started to run. And I just kept running.

And I did it. I ran a mile, in about ten minutes. I slowed down and walked a few minutes. And then I started to run again. And even though my hip hurt again, I was able to keep going, and for the first time, actually completed the 30 minutes!!

It was a little emotional.

And I will try again next week.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010


So, for the last almost ten years, we have had pretty crappy furniture. And really, there isn't anything wrong with the free couch you get from the neighbor that is getting rid of it, or table you picked up at a yard sale. The only reason we have a matching couch and love seat is because my husband found them before we left Germany, used, and wanted them because both sides of both recline. And the big couch has a heating or massage thing in it. (which we have never used in the four years we have had them). These poor pieces of furniture have been moved several times, been taken apart and put back together, and been used mercilessly by two small children. And they are starting to show it. You know it is bad when someone comes to your house, sits on your couch, and asks for a pillow because they can feel the metal bars in your couch. Yeah. (no, I wasn't offended. I have been feeling them myself for a while.)

We are to the point, at least I feel that we are, where we need some real furniture. Adult furniture. Furniture that looks nice, but also is functional and serves our needs. (ok, we really do not NEED new furniture. it is absolutely a want.) I have been looking on craigslist for a long time for other pieces of needed furniture in our house, and came across this lovely thing:

I love it. I love the color, I love how it looks. I love that both of us like it. And the best part is that it also comes with this option:

Because we always live far away from friends and family, we often have visitors. And while the extra-long-twin-mattresses-that-go-together-make-a-cal-king-on-the-floor work quite well, sometimes we need more than that. (not to mention a better place to store the darn mattresses. at least my kids get some use out of them my using them as an inside trampoline. heaven knows they need them with this crappy weather we have here.) The only thing left to do is go look at the showroom where this baby is at and see if it is comfy. See if it can stand up to kids and moving. See if it is really worth spending part of our tax return on.

There is also another reason I want to do this. My husband and I have this agreement. When we accomplish something fairly big, or are apart for a while, we get to do something or get something for ourselves. For example, after he finished his first year of Physicians Assistant school (by far much more difficult and harder than the second year) he got us a new TV. One that he can watch his sports in HD with. Or play video games with. This time my husband got himself a new bike as his deployment gift to himself. A very nice, expensive bike, that cost more than what we used to make in a month as E4's. We even got it on sale. This furniture is my gift to myself for this deployment. (and believe it or not, his bike cost about the same as what this furniture will. I know, a BIKE!!!) There is another set at the same location that I also want to look at, although it does not have a sleeper in it. But that set breaks up into pieces so that it doesn't always have to be a sectional. And since we move so often, having a versatile piece of furniture like that could be pretty awesome.

So, I am excited. Excited that we are at a point that we can do this. Excited for how it will look.

I just might turn out to know how to make my house look nice after all. Well, after I get all my little clutter piles picked up.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Le langage de l'amour

For Sunday Scribblings

Last night, about 10pm, my computer rang. Usually my husband calls closer to when the kids are getting ready for bed, so it was a little unexpected. Especially since we had spent a lot of time talking to him earlier that evening. He had some time before sick call started and just wanted to call me. And practice his French.

Since he has been gone, he has been studying French. For active duty and their families, Rosetta Stone is free through the Army Knowledge Online website. And since my husbands job allows him a lot of free time, he, for whatever reason, decided to learn French.

He has been studying it for a while. He downloaded some things that he can put on his MP3 player and listen to while he spends hours at the gym. (he really has a lot of extra time there) And last night he called because he wanted to practice speaking French with me.

I love it. I feel like it is his way to have some sort of a connection with me while he is gone for so long. It could also be because we hope to get back to Germany and he knows if we do we will go to France. Many many times. It will also be useful when I have things to tell him that I don't want the kids to understand.

The sad part of all this, is that my French has really gotten bad. I can read it and understand almost everything. I can listen to it and understand 90% of what they are saying. But when it comes to me responding, my brain struggles to find the right conjugations, the right vocabulary. I hate it. I used to be fluent. I could hold my own anywhere in France. I could joke with people, give directions, do anything. And now, ten years after I was fluent, my brain is just so much slower.

Sometimes if I have time to warm up, things start to just come out. Which I love. I even dream in French still. Not that often, but I do sometimes.

I have a few grammar books that I really want to start working on. Working on the future, subjunctive, and the imperfect tenses. Remembering sentence structure, vocabulary, and all the exceptions of the rules. Because French is the language of exceptions.

I love speaking French with my husband. It gives me a warm fuzzy feeling, helps me to feel connected to him while he is so far away. There are things that we do not talk about in English, but for some reason, I can say those things in French. It also is motivating me to do more to improve my French. (I am hoping to go back to school soon and start taking French classes!) I just wish I had the hours he did to sit and do it. It would really be sad if he came home speaking better than I did. Well, no matter what, I still have a better accent than he does.