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Location: Upstate, South Carolina, United States

I think that the Meredith Brooks' song, "Bitch," summarizes me rather nicely. Or, if you prefer, X. dell says I'm a life-smart literary scholar with a low BS tolerance...that also works!

Friday, September 30, 2005

Paranoid Parenting

Welcome to paranoid parenting! Here, we discuss all the ways we are paranoid that we are ruining our child's life, or children's lives if appropriate!

Did everybody make their weekly contribution to the "Future Therapy Funds" jar? Good! Then we can proceed!


I think it's normal for people to worry about parenting their kids. Am I doing it right? Will they be better off for having me as a parent? Am I putting him or her as the highest priority? What is GOOD to do, what is RIGHT to do, in this situation or that? If a person doesn't second guess the decisions made while in charge, I feel that the person can't claim to be a decent parent. Nobody's born with these skills. And honestly, no matter how great your parents were to YOU, every child is different and has different needs.

I always make jokes that I have to add an appropriate amount of money to the therapy savings account whenever I do something to or with the kids. Like, for instance, this week I decided that I was a Crap Mom because I forgot to pack up Ari's lunch the other day. It's the second time in three years I've managed to do this. What's the worst case scenario there? Well, the school lets her get food out of the cafeteria and I pay for it later. She gets fed. Still, when Ariana came home and told me she cried because she couldn't find her lunch and felt she must have misplaced it, I slumped. There's another $80 to the therapy fund, I thought.

Today's agitation started this morning. Ariana was reviewing her spelling list on the way to school because they get a spelling test every Friday. She's pulled up her spelling so that she now has straight A's. The quarter ends soon, and all she has to do is get an A on today's spelling test (she did) and next Friday's test and she has the A honor roll. I promised her a special prize if she managed to do so. Why did I do this? My parents NEVER did that. The OTHER kids got special prizes when they had all A's, but WE got a glass of Pepsi (we weren't allowed to have soda, ever, except four times a year if we were on the A or A/B honor roll). Repeatedly I asked my parents: why don't we get a prize for doing well? A nice pat on the back? Something? My parents responded: we have four kids getting fantastic grades. We'd be broke. Blah. I hated that. I know the reward should be "the grade itself," but...well, for little kids in particular, why CAN'T they also have a fun book or toy as a "congrats!" message? Anyway, Ari's drive to get her special prize made her review the words on the way to school. She's in second grade, and they do 10 to 12 words per week for spelling. My son, on the other hand, is in a K-4 program...preschool. They supposedly learn the alphabet instead, but Jared already knows it.

Ok, so there Ari is, rattling off her words and how to spell them, and suddenly, I hear Jared pipe up, "You forgot the N."

Oh shit. He was right.

Gaping like a fish, my mind went nuts. He's four! Most four year olds can't read, but I was three when I read, so why not? But...I didn't know! But...if I realized he was at a really high level of word recognition, I would have worked with him more and read to him more and of course I read to him and Ari reads to him too but oh my god, have I screwed him up by not assuming he was gifted enough to start reading????

No really. These were my paranoid thoughts. So, after I dropped them off at school, I tried to reason with myself that it was a fluke. He was a normal four year old. I had done him no disservice by not working with him like a tennis coach works with a prodigy. Then the doubts crept in...did I neglect his reading skills because Ari was so adept at math that I assumed that he, like her, would not be able to read before 5? I mean, I worked with her a LOT because she loved to read, and it still didn't happen before kindergarten. No, no, no, I reasoned. Jared has high word recognition, sure, but he doesn't know how to spell words. He's not fully ready to read. He's not even in kindergarten. You didn't screw up.

Then I picked up Jared and Ariana from school today. The teacher for his k-4 class RUNS!!! out to my car and opens up the door, babbling at me. "My goodness, you have such a smart child!" she tells me. "They were able to play with beads today and the beads had letters on them! He decided to make me a necklace, and on his own he pulled out Mrs. Jewell from all the letters, threaded it up, and presented it to me! He even got the MRS right!" she beamed. I thanked her, and my heart started going again.

My child. Genius. Stuck with a woman who is so tired from teaching school/Girl Scouts/running this house/counseling students that one story is quite enough at night to read, and we're done. In a stay-at-home parent family (an advantage Ariana got because I didn't start working until she started kindergarten!), he'd already be reading. Then the guilt started in about the failed marriage and how the stay-at-home parent, me, was ripped from him at two and a half years of age. Hell, of course the way my mind was going, I was also thinking...if it weren't for ME being his mother, by now he'd have cured cancer! Damnit!

Paranoia is such a beautiful thing!

Thursday, September 29, 2005

It's Embarrass Alex Time!


What relationship doesn't need some...fireworks...right, Alex? *grins evilly*

December of 2003, Alex decided to be a total romantic (as per usual). See, in September of that year, I had told him that I had never done anything on New Year's Day. EVER. The most exciting times I ever spent at NYE was breastfeeding at midnight with two tiny newborns (both my children were born in December). He told me that I needed to have done something fun for NYE...and he would take care of it. Before I realized what had happened, he had booked reservations at this very nice, expensive, delicious restaurant--La Bastide--for the evening PLUS booked their nicest room at the Inn part of La Bastide for the night.

It was a magical night. There was music and dancing and appetizers and all you can drink good wine and alcohol...and fantastic food for dinner...and then, of course, there's the action. When you take two people who are madly in love and give them a bunch o' alcohol, why would you NOT have some action going on?

So, yeah, like at 1030p we decided to "visit" our wonderful room. The room had a plush king sized bed with a down comforter and pillows, a fireplace, a jacuzzi, thick robes, slippers, more wine should we want it, etc.

Before we knew it, midnight had rolled around. The professional fireworks display started up. How appropriate, considering the activities that had passed in the room and were bound to continue!

Alex pulled back the drapes so he could see the full effect. There he stood, admiring the beautiful display of bright, vivid lights and loud explosions. He remarked that there were a lot of people enjoying the fireworks out there.

"Honey," I told him mildly, "that's not what they are enjoying."

Alex forgot he was nude. The curtains were back indeed, and there were the people outside within full view. Totally embarrassed, he scampered off to put on his robe, flushed deep red.

I didn't stop laughing for quite some time.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Brain Death

I wish I weren't the absent-minded professor type. Yes, it happens more when I'm distracted and overwhelmed.

Women: ever shave your legs in the shower, only to get out, go on with your day, and realize oh shit, I only shaved ONE LEG????

Yeah. Rock on for me.

Guys, I don't think your equivalent of just "missing a patch" on your face is as dumb as missing a whole damned LEG. I can't believe me on some days...sigh...

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Like a Headless Chicken!

Today I feel panicked. I really do.

I have about 40 emails to answer. I usually am all caught up on my emails. I suck.

I have NO FREE TIME at all. At school, even when I think I might have ten minutes, a student hunts me down. I keep thinking I'll just say, "I need to eat! Sorry!" but I can't. I'm usually the only teacher who can earn their trust, and this is a community college. By that I mean: many of my students are doing community college because life dealt them so many crappy blows that they have no choice if they want an education. Every semester I'm there, it gets worse because I then have former students hunting me up AND current ones. Do I love helping? YES!!!! Do I love feeling useful? YES!!!! Does all this social work mean I'm falling behind on my school stuff and life? YES!!!!


Today's counseling was an hour and a half on student Z ("Kira, my therapist doesn't even help me as much as you do...you've been through this and you really understand what I need to look at, and what I need to see to keep my head on straight!").

Oh, and then another half hour on Student X. This boy was NOT the type of boy to ever open up. EVER. To anyone. He's in a foster care family even though he's hit 18, and there are lots and lots of issues. I still can't believe he was telling me all this stuff. It goes so against his ethnic background and personal experience to leave himself vulnerable to anybody. So, how could I refuse? I found out that he talks about how great I am to other people, and how lucky he is to have me as a teacher. Again...how can I refuse? I'm hoping I can help him more.

I'm not even getting in my Chuck Time. Chuck is my favorite instructor at Tech. No wait. Chuck is my favorite HUMAN BEING at tech since Amanda left. I adore Chuck. He makes me laugh, and we have a great time. A student came in the other week and laughed at us, saying, "You guys are always joking around and having a blast here!" Well, yes. Chuck is brilliant, funny, and like me tempermentally. Oh, and most importantly, Chuck is a pervert. I can do any manner of innuendo and he's there, catching and returning! There, that's some innuendo too! haha!

I come home and since the WC is so busy, I'm always looking at papers. As Chuck said today, "The last thing I want is to look at more papers at home." Yes. But then again, my kids are taking up that time anyway, so what does it matter?

I'm behind horribly on grading and we haven't even hit fall break.

I have to pay this stack of bills by Friday or they'll be late. I'm never late paying bills. Unacceptable. Gotta do that before bed, maybe.

I have to clean up the kitchen. I cleaned it up earlier before making dinner. Now we're back to go.

Ari needs help with her homework. My floor needs vacuuming. My cat's box needs more litter. I need to mop the kitchen floor because I spilled something sticky on it. I need to fill out this paperwork to continue to get the sponsored insurance for my kids...and that requires getting some other stuff done. Jared qualifies for the free lunch program at school thanks to his dad's total lack of income, and I was told that they prefer for the 4-K program to have all the kids eat the cafeteria lunch, so they prefer for us to fill out said forms. HEY, that means I need to get the ex to sign a paper. Sounds like work! That'll be fun to pry out of him! "I'm a lawyer! My son shouldn't qualify for a free lunch program!" Riiiiighhht. When you are too busy drinking and partying for two years while you wait for your license to come back, then you aren't a lawyer. Not a lawyer even right now due to no license, too. So hah!


I need to organize my bag and sort through my papers. I still haven't unpacked from last weekend.

It's just reached that point of so much to do that I can't do any of it and instead panic and run around aimlessly.


ARRRRGHHHHHH! *rips hair and continues to run around like a chicken with her head cut off*

Sunday, September 25, 2005

Yes, Amanda!

Your boobies are weapons of male destruction! And they are so much more fun to find than the fictious weapons of mass destruction!

Why? Well, see, since they are real males can play with them.

Males hunting for the other kind, sadly, had nothing to play with.

Amanda's breasts = LOVE BABY!

(pssst nobody ask...it's better that way)

Mmmmm Sleeping Children

We arrived back at 8p from Columbia. Now they are in bed, sleeping.

The weekend went really well. Alex was, well, perfectly fabulous as always. We talked a little bit about how scary it was for me to have toothbrushes and other small items now left at his apartment for the kids. Amazingly, he always seems to understand my fears this way and knows how to soothe them.

I liked helping him set up his apartment. For the record, I'm a bitch. I like to think of myself as The Good Queen Bitch, but still! What do I mean by this statement? I have some OCD issues and control issues that just randomly crop up at a moment's notice. I would definitely say this has to be the main part of my personality that drove my ex nuts. He HATED to have anybody ever tell him what to do, period. I, on the other hand, wasn't even AWARE half the time that I was telling him to do something. But believe me, he noticed it every time. Typical sentence structures that would freak out the ex:

"It's your mom's birthday. You need to get her a card."

(ha! He would grumble about it and get me to buy it. God I suck. It's the 'you need' line that he loathed, though. Well, and he hated the part that it meant he had to do something he'd rather me do.)

"Hey, the garbage is overflowing. Can you take it to the dump today?"

(no really, to my ex that was a controlling statement even though I was asking. Apparently, I was supposed to just say something like 'can you tell me when you are going to take out the garbage?' and be satisfied with whatever answer there would be...even though that and starting up the fire in the fireplace were his only chores around the house.)

"I can't reach this lightbulb. I need help."

(Yeah, that was a controlling statement too...I think I need more therapy because I STILL can't see it. Sigh. But Alex and Bellybutton complained/complain like MAD to me that I never would/will ask for help when I needed it. Now you know why.)

Anyway, Alex loves all of me. Every last scrap. When I'm a bitch, or grumpy, or curt, he still grins at me and loves me. Isn't that rockin' fab? (A* darling...you know what I mean! haha!). So, there I am in HIS APARTMENT and oh god, I'm being sooo OCD about how things are placed or stored or put away that it's just sad. And Alex just grins at me and lets me. I'm moving around HIS SHIT (Note: I'd kill somebody who did that to me...what's my problem? Where's my 'treat others as I want to be treated' philosophy NOW?) to be in what I think is a more logical and organized fashion.

Meanwhile, Alex has my four year old son doing the same thing. POOR MAN!

For instance, Alex left a pen out on the table. Jared found the pen box with the other pens that looked like it...grabbed the pen off the table...and put it back in the box. He also saw a spindle of cds that had a couple of cd's laying near it. He picked up all the cds and stacked them back up, replaced the rubber ring, then put the lid back on and snapped it shut. THEN he looked at the placement of where Alex had stuck said CD case and....ummm....god I'm so embarrassed, but hell, he's my son...moved it to a new location on the table because he thought it 'looked better' over there.

Now, if Alex had told me to stop, I would have. It's HIS apartment. If Alex would have said, well, these suggestions are fine, but don't move this one thing, that'd have been fine too. However, what Alex did was let me reorganize the kitchen to my heart's content. Oh, and the bathroom too. Oh, and the laundry.

Hey, but I left the bedrooms alone! And the living room and dining room areas! Yay! I'm salvagable!

Yes I am. Shut up. SHUT UP! I AM TOO! :)

The kids loved the zoo. Jared picked out his item in the gift shop: a snake hat. It's a rattlesnake hat, and yes, it rattles. He was running around hissing at people and having a blast with it. Of course he insisted on wearing it into stores today too. Ariana picked out a small stuffed tiger. Both of my kids are obsessed about cats in all forms, so I was not surprised.

There was a wonderful 3D movie at the zoo we could see. Alex and I were very impressed with how well it was done. I had a hard time watching it at points because I was so entertained by watching my kids either reach out in front of themselves to grab something or dodge something.

The best Alex moment of all was when I took him into World Market today. I had been in the store before and knew he NEEDED to see it. Sure enough, he was an excited little boy as he jumped around from product to product he loved but could never get in France. See, Alex's mom is a Brit. His father is French. Alex spent the first three years of his life in England, and after that he often spent vacations with his grandparents in England. That's why a) his English is pretty good and b) his English is also spoken with a distinct Brit flair. Well, since he's been over to England so much, he became used to certain biscuits (cookies to the Americans) and candy bars. He can't get most of them over in France. BUT! THERE THEY WERE IN THE WORLD MARKET! He also almost died when he saw Heinz Tomato Soup too, as apparently it was a childhood favorite. Alex loaded up, practically bouncing on his heels the whole way! It was definitely a Yayness Moment. The kids were also excited because Alex then bought them a few candy treats too. Note to self: World Market is dangerous to the budget.

What a great weekend! I had a lot of snuggles from Alex and the kids; the zoo was fun; I helped him get his apartment in order; we had good food. The only bad moment was during Friday night. I went to the grocery for us while Alex stayed home with children, and a bastard stole the assigned parking place. He lives near a pile of bars, and somebody wanted that spot to go bar hopping. We contemplated towing. NEXT TIME, BASTARD! YOU JUST WAIT! I had to park farther away Friday night which sucked. I reclaimed the spot on Saturday morning, though, and kept it the rest of the time. Otherwise, we all had a great time!

I still can't believe Alex seemed delighted for me to redo his kitchen a lot *flushes*. I'm glad, though. Maybe he realizes I'll be cooking there more than he will so it's ok? haha!

He IS a great man. The best!

And there ARE no promises.

And it DOES suck to be vulnerable.

However...I can do this relationship thing forever again. Alex is--as has been pointed out--the man by which all other men are judged! haha! Nobody can do better than him. And so, I'll just say thank you for My Alex and go to bed now.

(next time I see him is a week from Wednesday...yes, I can wait...I think...maybe...aw, do I have a choice?)

Friday, September 23, 2005

Running out the door

I'm heading to Columbia (two hour drive) right now with the kids.

I'm terrified. I know that frequently we will do this exact trip for the next two years as Alex finishes up his internship and also does his last year at USC. So, I bought the kids items to leave at his house...it's worse than items I leave there for ME. It's so permanent! My hands actually shook as I packed up a box of stuff we're taking down there. Some of you think I'm being a retard, I'm sure. Some of you understand. It's just...when you get married and trust you'll be married forever, and then your hubby goes nuts and that's the end of that, you feel uncertain about promises, the future, relationships, etc. I know this is the right avenue to go in life.

I'm still scared crapless.

Pardon me while I, shaking still, pack up the rest of the car and take off!

Thursday, September 22, 2005

How To Be A Real Woman

I was a tomboy growing up. I bathed. I wore clean clothes. That was about it. If my clothes matched, hey, it was a great day!

As I became older, I realized that I didn't qualify as a "real woman." I didn't have the items necessary to count as one. My sister was disgusted at me and pointed out to me what I needed. I'm almost there!

A real woman needs the following:

a) Over 20 pairs of shoes. At least one pair has to be a pair that the woman bought just to match a single, solitary outfit OR is a pair of shoes that matches nothing, but that woman KNOWS ONE DAY she will find the perfect outfit...

b) More than 5 shades of lipstick.

c) Sexy underwear and bras

d) Lingerie

e) At least one (1) Chick Magazine around the house (note: romance novels can substitute)

f) At least five (5) DVDs or VCR tapes that could qualify as chick movies

g) Something lacy, flowery, or pastel-ish

h) No fewer than five (5) bottles of stuff in the shower. These items can include shampoo, conditioner, body wash, shaving gel, facial scrub, deep intensive hair treatment, etc.

i) Several different types of moisturizer and lotion

j) All closet and drawer space must be filled over capacity with clothes

k) Something nice smelling (perfume, candles, or incense)

Hmmm...I'm probably missing some items. If anybody can think of what to add, let me know! I'm still working on this "woman" thing here. I'm getting there. I can't EVER do the southern woman behavior of subtlety and sweetness. Sigh. Therefore, it's imperative that I fulfill the rest of this list so I can pretend I'm a woman otherwise! haha!


How the hell did I forget purses/handbags????

l) At least five (5) purses or handbags. These purses can match shoes or outfits.

m) The main handbag/purse must have odd crap in it. Every woman's purse should have slightly different odd crap in it. "Normal" crap is a wallet, brush, makeup items, checkbook, cell phone, and gum/mints. A pen or pencil is also considered normal. Odd crap is not necessarily an item that you don't think belongs in a purse. Odd crap just simply isn't found in the vast majority of women's purses.

Odd item examples (all items I have either had in my purse in the past or am carrying now): an address book, keys on a keychain to nothing that I own or go to, a fold up cup, the entire medicine cabinet (sudafed, claritin, excedrin, actifed, you name it), a wine bottle opener (hey, you never know!), letters I received years ago, hair bands, bubbles, French flashcards (you wanna bet Cookie makes another French letters joke?), d&d dice, paper clips, coupons, letters to mail, hand lotion, various food items, random small children's toys, books, magazines, collar with D ring and a leash (no. don't ask. no really. just don't), or underwear (again, it's just best to not ask). Just about anything that you cart around that can fit into said purse will count.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

My Social Filter Fails Again

Today we were going over the process analysis essay that my English 155ers have to write. They have to pick out their own topics. One of the girls always whines about having to pick her own topic. She has issues with thinking for herself. In fact, she tries to make up every excuse in the world to get me to assign a topic on anything. For instance, they write journals for me, and each collection of journals has three assigned topics and three freewrites. She has tried so far to get me to come up with her three freewrites every time.

So, as she began whining today about not getting the topic assigned, I explained that she had outside interests and she should use those as a basis for what topic she should pick.

Girl, whining more: "But all I do is go to school, study, and sleep!"

Me, sighing: "Honey, you have a daughter you made somehow, so I KNOW that's a lie. I mean, I have two children and I know that they don't come from school, study, or sleep."

Class was uncontrollable for a few minutes. Oh well!

Tuesday, September 20, 2005


I was pondering this AM how I began to blog, and how my original purposes for blogging are different from the ones I seem to hold now.

Amanda had a blog before I did, and she gave me the link. Then she also gave me Angie's blog link (well, links...that's when she used to have two blogs). I found it a great way to keep up on Amanda in particular and to learn more about Angie. Amanda and I were very close at Premere Tech, but Angie left shortly after I arrived, so I only saw her a few times. We ate out once (Amanda, Angie, and I) and I immediately understood why Amanda adored her, so the blog was a great way to get to know Angie better. I started out as a reader.

Well...but it wasn't too long before I started to itch to make comments. I decided to set up a blog mostly to make comments on their blogs, but then I also decided hey, I could make a post here and there so they could see what was up with my life too. My posting in the beginning was very sporatic because that was my sole goal: give Amanda and Angie a way to know about my life if they desired.

Then I decided...why not give the blog addy to others I don't see as often as I would like so they, too, can keep up on the Life of Kira? I remember sending the addy to Joe at that time for starters, and then a few other friends received it as well. Some of them read the blog but never comment because (I suspect) they are not wanting to set up an account to comment. I have my blog set up to not receive anonymous comments because I think anonymous comments are cowardly. If you have something to say, be willing to back it up!


So, for a short while I was happy with this arrangement: only people who knew me had my link. I could post now on Amanda and Angie's blogs. Done!

Well, not done.

I'm trying to remember the order on things, but I believe it was Jezzy who found my blog and posted over here first. She was one of them, at least. Then Valerie posted over here, followed quickly by another person or two. I kept thinking to myself, why the hell do they care? They don't know me? HAHA! Yes, I hadn't gotten the whole blogging concept down pat yet! I peeked at their blogs out of curiosity. And then it just blossomed from there. I found a few other blogs I just had to read because they were interesting. I usually found them because they posted on Amanda or Angie's blogs...or they posted on mine.

I think the biggest turning point in my change of blogging attitude was when I posted a short story months ago. I knew that Amanda was going through a rough time, and she sincerely inspired me to finish up this short story I had been meaning to finish up like FOREVER. That's why there's a dog in it for the main character. If I had, at that point, been basing it solely on MY life, the main character would have had a cat! Haha! Well, Amanda was talking to WordWhiz at that point who was going through a similar crisis. WW read my story and wrote her response to it in such a way that I was totally moved and started to follow HER blog.

There, I thought. I'm done. I have a short list of blogs I follow outside of folks I know, and that's that.


WW posted a link to Hof's blog one day due to the Why do men...? series of posts he was writing. I thought the post was hilarious, so I stayed and read more. Then he sketched me up! I was so touched that a man I had never met would offer to sketch his readers and then DID SO that I have remained a loyal reader since that point.

And who can read Hof's blog without following A*'s? Yes, it became apparent very quickly that Hof was brilliant because he realized exactly how great A* was. Why wouldn't I read the blogs of two genius folks?

Ok, so THEN I determined: I have enough blogs to follow. WE...ARE...DONE!


The branching has continued, and I feel like shortly I will have one of those tremendous blogrolling lists that I've seen some folks have. I just can't help but get sucked in to certain people's blogs. For example, when I was reading comments on Hof's blog, I saw a few funny, well-written comments by Foilwoman...ok, so then I became a regular reader. She advocated her Very Best Friend in the whole world's blog...ok, so I began to read hers. She talked about how wonderful Cookie was...ok, so then I started reading Cookie's blog. I saw Laura write a quip on Hof's blog long ago that resonated with me, and I thought for some odd reason she might have something in common with me so I checked out her blog. Poof! I LOVED her sense of humor and quickly found out that, sadly, we DID have a few things in common. I say "sadly" because most folks wouldn't get all excited that there were more men out there in the world who neglected their families for drug and alcohol issues.

Determined not to read more blogs, I became stubborn. NO...MORE...BLOGS. I am reading enough, thanks.

Well, but then I realized that Andy's blog was all about a MAN who was madly in love with his wife and son, and I find it just settling and comforting to read his posts related to said issues. I know there are plenty of men out there who are great dads and husbands, but not many of them blog about it. And then April showed up and became my official Ego Feeder. Damn does she do a fantastic job! Ok, ok, I thought reluctantly...there's two more to watch.

We're DONE, right? No.

I suddenly had a blogger stumble upon my blog while she was trying to find examples of decent blogs from each of the 50 states. She added me to the 50 Blogs Project, and I immediately referred Laura to her since she hadn't had anybody for Kansas yet. I couldn't recommend the other folks' blogs I follow because either a) the state they write from was already taken by another blog or b) I don't KNOW what state you write from. Anyway, that was the next blog link...and then Chief Slacker started posting over here, so I added his to my list...same with SC who made it clear early on that he understands redheads since he's engaged to one...haha! Sandra's blog I really ended up peeking at for no reason I can pinpoint, but once I showed up I went...aw fuck, I guess I'll be coming back HERE TOO!

No really. I'm done now. NO MORE! Except, well, Mesabi Red's blog is kinda cool and I'm getting sucked in there too...

Why am I kidding myself? I came online to blog so that friends could keep in contact with me, and I've made a lot of NEW friends. There's a nice little community here, and I'm suddenly a part of it, and happily so! I guess I will keep blogging and finding new places to visit. I guess I'd better find a way to get to Vegas so that WordWhiz will give me that alcoholic beverage she has promised me! I guess I'm having more fun with this blogging thing than I ever imagined.

So, why did YOU start blogging? Is the reason the same now as it was then? I know my answer sure has shifted with time!

(EDIT: I'm adding in links...*grumbles*...I hate doing links...some people are link happy. Not me!)

Monday, September 19, 2005

Back Again!

Ok, so first of all I know I'm behind on my damn emails. I'm sorry. It's been a hellacious week and then I was gone this weekend. I didn't have access to the net since Friday AM until now. Well, technically when I arrived back at the house at 1a I COULD have checked, but I chose to sleep some first.

Except for all the driving, the weekend was great! I was most excited to see my friend Trish. I haven't seen her in forever. I adore Trish. Trish is brilliant and fun and interesting. I think that Mesabi Red would love her. She's good at just about everything, but her main love is science. She has a master's from UNC in Ecology and watches the discovery channel for entertainment. I was able to meet her fiance this weekend too...which was a surprise. I wasn't sure if she'd ever get married at all. I mean, handfasted sure (that's religiously way more up her alley), but married? When I asked how long they'd been engaged, they both scrunched up their faces and tried to remember. I had to laugh! The answer was: we think two months ago was when we decided for tax purposes to go ahead and get married. Later on, I leaned to Alex and told him if he ever proposed to me like that, the answer was no. Haha!

It was great to hang out with my brother and my sister-in-law, plus my nephew and niece a bit as well. They want us to come back for Thanksgiving. I probably will try to arrange that. I think the kids would have a great time there, and holidays are for family anyway.

I think one of the most entertaining parts of the weekend was to show Alex The Mansion (as I like to call it) that my brother's family has. He's just rarely seen anything approximating 5000 square feet (if ever). In Europe, there's a lot of folks scrunched into a small area, and so the dwellings are just smaller. So are the appliances and everything else. He was amazed by the whole set up and kept mumbling about how much SPACE there was in the house.

The funniest part of the weekend for me was the moment that Alex revealed that yes, indeed, he is male. My brother Ken has this one room that we call the Man Room. I also like Laura's phrase that she used for a similar room in her house once: the testostaroom. It has a huge, mammouth TV in it with surround sound. Watching anything on that sucker is an experience that can only be beat at the movie theatre. Alex was wide eyed and drooling as he examined this room. Then, that night--and mind you he has NO memory of saying this, but I just thought I'd die laughing when he mumbled it--Alex was nearly all the way asleep and he had one last thing to say. It was a little slurry as he was so groggy and almost asleep:

"I like your brother a lot and I respect his TV."

Congrats, Alex! Your man card is secure despite your lack of enthusiasm about sports! Haha!

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Another wedding

So, tomorrow I get off from school at 2p, drive back to the apartment and collect a few things, then drive two hours to Columbia. There, I drive to Alex's workplace and pick him up, driving onwards to Raleigh for a dear friend's wedding.

Said dear friend has been engaged probably 13 times (barely exaggerating here...). He is a year or two older than I am, and this time his engagement seems to have lasted. I'm nervous for him. I have never met the bride, and I just have to wonder. Oh well. That's their business! We'll arrive and BE HAPPY.

Of course watching a wedding will make me brood a bit over my own collapsed marriage. I can't help it. And then I'll likely have a moment of panic wherein I resolve to not get married again. And then Alex will reassure me in his very classic style, and all will be fine again.

I DO have an attitude of, do this this this and we're over! Thankfully, the list does not include any of Alex's behaviors. My trigger list for men:

1) If I speak, you listen.

2) Occasionally pay attention to me. SOLELY to me. Not all the time, damnit. I need space. I'm just sayin'...sometimes.

3) Cheat on me and I remove your testicles.

4) If we have a household together, unless you are the stay at home dad, you'd better be fucking earning an income. If said income is spent on you more than the house, I will strangle you with fishing line.

5) If he likes to get drunk all the time, bye bye. I don't care if he drinks (I drink!); I care if he drinks too much, too frequently.

6) If he smokes pot, bye bye. I'd still vote it legal if given the chance. I don't care if my friends do it. But as far as me dating a pothead? Not happening.

7) No other drugs either. I don't care if they are legal or illegal (of course I am not referring to prescription drugs that are for a specific problem). I just can't cope with it after all that happened.

8) Scream at me and I will take nearby objects and keep shoving them down your throat until you can no longer speak.

9) If you're living here, it's OUR house. Get off your ass and help out. I am not your maid/financial planner/hooker/nanny. I'm your girlfriend/wife.

Yeah, that's the major triggers. Yeah, I have a violent response to said triggers. I can just FEEL the men cringing...haha! Sorry, guys. It's my emotional baggage. It comes in blue or green, but never pink. There's little cute wheels, though! So it's EASY to push! Ask Alex! haha! And also to be fair, this list became triggers due to more than my Ex. It's the accumulation of experience that has handed me this lovely set of Samsonite Emotional Baggage.

I just don't take shit in a relationship anymore. That's the vibe I sent out, too: "I won't take shit. I will love you until you feel like you've gone to heaven...be loyal and caring and adoring...and make you laugh like your gut will burst...but I won't take shit. Why? Because I'm worth gold, not feces. So if you aren't willing to treat me like the rare treasure I am, FUCK OFF." Hey, it worked. That attitude got me Alex.

And I guess...well, at first I was so scarred from the failed marriage that I swore never again. My motto? Bigamy is having one husband too many. So is monogamy! But I've settled down. I look at the wonderful man that Alex is, and I realize he's already such a major part of my life that marriage IS an option. He fits. The kids love him. I don't enjoy things in life quite as much when he's not around. I guess I need to keep him! So, back to the wedding I will witness: I will brood, I will panic, Alex will settle me down...I'll smile, feel content...

...and know that I could do this thing once more...as long as it was with him.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Progress Report

Ok, so I didn't realize that in second grade, Ariana would get a progress report mid-term for the first quarter. Ignorant me!

First of all, I'm really proud of her. She's about two points away from being a straight A student. If she pulls up her language arts grade from a 91 to a 93 by the end of this first quarter, she'll get there. It's the spelling tests that are dragging her down. She has a 95 in reading comprehension, which is graded separately from the spelling and writing exercises.

Second of all, she's more from my family than I am. See, remember: I'm the medieval lit person in the middle of three engineers, a math major, and an orthodontist. "One of these things is not like the other! One of these things just doesn't belong!" My daughter has a 100% average in math and science.


HOW do you get a 100 in math? I've never done that before in my life! But then I remembered that all the tests of hers in math I've signed to go back to class were 100's and she keeps getting little rewards for being one of two or the only one to get a 100 on X math test, so...I shouldn't be surprised. Right?

And a 100 in science? My God!



Here, in case you wonder how much of a pain in the ass I can be sometimes...Alex is staying at his boss' house until Monday when he moves into his own apartment there in Columbia. He, being ever helpful, just got up to assist in dinner preparations while we talked on msn (I'm sure you can figure out who has what title on msn):

Kira Rocks!! says:
Just laid the table

Mange ta merde et crève ! says:
You set the table, or you had sex with it?

Kira Rocks!! says:


And for those not proficient in French, that translation of my title is "eat shit and die." Told ya it was the wrong time of the month to mess with me...haha!

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

How To Know It's That Time of the Month


4 Godiva Truffles

1 Pint Haagen Dazs Dulce De Leche

To Student Who Had a Cell Phone Ring In Class:

"What location on your body would you like that shoved up?"

To Students Who Were Whispering In Class:

"Shut up or I throw you out of class bodily"

Yup, I figure right about now Alex is pretty damn happy he's in Columbia...haha!

Monday, September 12, 2005

Trying to Think Happy Thoughts

Well, Alex had to head off to his internship this morning. He will be located a two hour drive from me in Columbia. We can see each other on weekends--tons better than four months like this summer--so we will have a lot of contact. I should be happy, right?

I'm not.

I'm betting A* will feel this crappy after Hof leaves after his week with her too.

YES, I am delighted I had a whole week with the love of my life. But...it's just so much easier with him HERE than with him AWAY. Then I also think: I have two more years of this shit. TWO...MORE...YEARS!!! ARGH! I can't move to Columbia (tied here due to custody issues). He can't move here because his course of study is at USC, in our number one international MBA program in America. It'd be foolish for him to NOT finish it up, as far as he's come. Plus, the average salary for a (completely bi-lingual) person with an IMBA degree is, oh, approximately four times what I am currently making. That'd make a decision to cut it short DOUBLE foolish. But two years? Two more years of seeing each other on holidays and vacations? Oh, crap. Even if we married, we'd still have to wait it out. It depresses me. I don't WANT to make it that long. I want him HERE, every NIGHT, FOREVER.

*throws baby-like tantrum on floor*

Ok, so it's apparent I need to think happy thoughts. I will, then, share with you my first and most favorite letter/note I had received from a student. I keep a folder filled with the notes and letters that my students write me in thanks for being their teacher. Whenever I stare at my paycheck, I open up that damned folder and remember why I'm doing this profession.

Student Q failed out of my English 101 class the very first term I was here. She was quiet. She said hardly anything in class at first, but she did open up a little as the term went on. Her grammar was atrocious, and she didn't seek out help during the term. So, yeah, she failed out of my class, but then in the spring term I helped her with her papers through the Writing Center, and she passed. I had positively NO idea I had influenced her at all! We joked and chatted a bit that spring term as I helped her with the papers, but really, if I had to pick out a single student of the 150 I started with that previous fall--a student who had been most pleased and influenced by me--she would not have been even on the top ten.

Sometimes, folks, we never know how much we influence people unless they choose to share it with us.

Amanda was in the WC that day (my boss! bestest boss I ever had! haha!) I received the letter. I started crying. I handed it to her. Yes, she started sniffing too. It just was that moving of a letter!

Student Q handed me the paper, folded over, and scurried out of the WC with rapid speed. I had no time to even question what the contents were. I just looked confused, so did Amanda, and then I opened it up and read it. Oh, and I'm leaving the grammar JUST as it was. BELIEVE ME, I know it's riddled with errors. I don't care. It was still a beautiful note.


Dear Kira

Hi I wanted to write you a letter to express everything you unintentionally or intentionally done for me. I would write this letter in my own handwriting but I want you to be able to actually read it. I thought for a moment you would discover this letter early because I was writing it in the writing center and suddenly you were looking over my shoulder. I am sorry if I seemed rude I did not mean to be. When I first came to *insert school name here* I was a shy and nervous young woman who was scared to say or do anything for fear of being ridiculed. Until I came to *school name* I had that nothing I ever did was right. That no one cared and I was worthless. I never expected that to change, but when I first attended your class you were like a hurricane that tore a hole in my brain. You were so blunt when you spoke that it shocked me. You put your life out there so that everyone could see and you did not care. You made me blush repeatedly with your off topic discussions and made me want to come to class early just so I could hear you talk (SIDE NOTE--I often arrived to this class early and we chatted about the world before class. When I look back, I realize she was ALWAYS there early...every class). Your words and attitude amazed me and buzzed in my mind like an angry bee and made me start to think. I began to think to myself that if you could go through your life of trials and problems and come out with such a "sunny" and interesting attitude and happy smirk that just maybe I could change and come out of my shell and be like you. I know this sounds pathetic but you opened my world. You exposed me to so many new ideas and concepts. Many people might say that is what happens at college but that is not the case. You amaze me. You told your entire life story to the class. Your "interesting" stories could fill a book. If you wrote about your classes I am sure it could fill many volumes of books. With titles such as when students come to class drunks to Interesting word and phrase misspellings (hand gliding). You have inspired me to live my life. I have started taking chances. I have started standing up for myself. I actually asked a guy for his phone number at a restaurant the other day. I flirt constantly and live my life to the fullest and think to myself why not. Most of the people I come in contact with I will never see again why not leave a lasting impression like you did for me. My constant thoughts used to be why is everyone looking at me, but now its why is everyone not looking at me. I have started caring what my future will be. You have, whether you have noticed or not, changed my life (for the better :) ). I am getting a full time job this summer in the medical field and I do not know if I will come back to *insert school name*. Because of you I am taking charge of my life. So I thank you so much for what you have done for me. I will always remember the laughs and smiles. My time in your class will be sunshine to look back at. You are an interesting woman Kira and you no doubtably will always be. You bring laughter in to every students life you touch. I just wanted to tell you Thanks for everything you do for students. I look forward to your columns in the Weekly World News. I hope your days are filled with interesting times (and men from other countries) and interesting students. May you have all the chocolate and champagne that you could ever desire. Hope you have a great life.

Your grateful student

*name signed here*

PS please don't check this paper for mistakes :)




So, yeah. I teach. I get paid nothing. I have no health insurance. But I love work every day.

Now you know why!

Oh, and further explanations so it makes sense: we had a student in her class show up drunk. It was an 8a class. He started drinking at 6a that morning. Can you say, alcoholic? I knew you could! It was a memorable class. We also had a dear older student who wrote a whole essay on how she wanted to go "hand gliding" instead of "hang gliding." Yes, we all had a blast with that one too.

The Weekly World News mention is due to my use of that in one day to show informal writing style (I then compare it to articles from local papers that have a more formal journalistic style). It's a useful tool for showing the differences between informal and formal writing. I always joke that I'm in the wrong profession since the writers for the WWN get twice my pay and great benefits. I could DO that job, you hear me? Haha!

Ok, concentrating on those happy thoughts now...

Sunday, September 11, 2005

More Fun in the South for Alex!

Alex has now been fully introduced to Southern life in America.

1) He had a RC cola (he likes it)

2) He had a moonpie (he was very polite about it...which means he didn't like it..."It's chewy. I'm not overly fond of marshmellows")

3) He got to see me deal with a Christian Fundamentalist Nutjob at the door who was trying to save me from sin.

I think the latter experience really threw him for a loop. You'd NEVER have a door to door evangelist type in France screaming about your sin and salvation. I was very courteous at first to the man because I thought Alex would like to see some of the fellow in action--after all, this is a totally new experience for him! After a while, I heard choking noises behind me though. Why? Well, the fellow hit a trigger button for me that made me slip a bit on courtesy and rip him a new asshole. All in an informative, yet terse, tone of voice! Basically, the Catholic church is the church of satan, the "false church," and he is worried because he knows that I am going to hell because I was baptized into said satan church as an infant. When I started going off about the Catholics, Episcopals, Anglicans, Lutherans, etc coming to an agreement about the role of Mary in the Christian church, and now they were working on the eucharist, so that if he felt that way, he was surely alone...that most Christians realized that accepting Christ was the critical aspect of being saved, not whether or not it made a person feel morally superior to point fingers at other Christians and say, "You're going to hell! I'm not! I know the one truth, the ONLY version of truth, and you don't!" I went off on transubstantiation, I went off on cosubstantiation, I went off on so much religious knowledge he did not have (or else he'd not be so fucking ignorant) that Alex said he had to TRY not to burst out laughing as he watched the guy's adam's apple bob up and down. He looked so confused when I told him that whatever religious beliefs I had, obviously they worked because I had a level of peace and a blessed life to such a degree that there had to be the divine taking a hand in it. For a conclusion, I told him that he was a totally offensive human being and that the conversation was over. Then I slammed the door in his face. See, now THAT is entertainment!

I figure he's praying for our souls right now as we speak. I don't mind. I'm always glad to give somebody useless something to do finally.

Alex was jealous. The neighbor's apartments who did not answer the door were left a very flashy pamphlet (that we were not given) about how everybody was going to hell, even if you believed in Christ. Even if you were baptized. Hell's just too damn full because you have to belong to THIS denomination and be BORN AGAIN, period, or...have I said it yet? You're going to hell! We got a good chuckle out of that one. We stole one of the pamplets off of another apartment's door (see? he's right! we're thieves! going to hell!) and have used it repeatedly for comedic value since yesterday afternoon.

That incident actually reminded me of Laura posting the bumper sticker she saw: God, save me from your followers. What disgusts me the most is that there are SO MANY FANTASTIC Christians who live their lives with the compassion and love that is essential for the real understanding of the religion, yet those Christians get thrown into the bucket with Nutjobs like this creep to anybody who is not Christian and has an experience like this one. I figure that men like this fellow are responsible for more people NEVER becoming Christian than ones who have actually converted. Honestly.

The funny thing is, by the time we went to bed yesterday, we decided the whole day was just perfect. And yes, that included I Know Best And You Are Going To Hell Man appearing on the doorstep. We had crepes for breakfast (I made them); we had fun with the nutjob; he had his RC and moonpie; we went to the grocery and had a great time shopping (Grocery shopping is so much fun with him!). Then, we came home, unloaded the groceries, and went to Green's. He bought a bottle of Mandarine Napoleon because I had never tried it. I love how adorably French he is sometimes...he kept raving about how pretty the bottle is...haha! He seriously gets into the aesthetics of the bottles of alcohol he purchases. We then meandered about the mall. See, I'm used to guys pushing me out of a store or not being patient, but Alex loves to shop. He doesn't care if it's clothes or cookware or shoes--he's interested. I rewarded him by buying something new at Victoria's Secret. He rewarded me by purchasing 8 Godiva truffles for me. We then ate at Flat Rock for dinner (a seafood place), had a nice long meal where we laughed and chatted a lot, and came home. Now, how's this for a geek activity? He pulled up a chair at that point and played with my hair while reading my favorite blogs with me...haha! I tried the Mandarine Napoleon when we arrived home, and I have to say that the stuff tastes how I WANTED Orangecello to taste. I would buy this one for sure if I wanted an orange liquor to sip. I will stick with my limoncello for my lemon moods, however.

*sings U2's Beautiful Day*

Saturday, September 10, 2005

The Nice Girl-Bitch

Since I already brought up the best guy combo, I just thought I'd mention the equivalent female combination. It's easy for me to discuss because it's absolutely what I think I am.

My friend Bellybutton, when we were dating, told me once that he wanted a nice girl with a naughty streak, and I fit the bill entirely. At the time, it made me laugh, but since then I've given much thought to the concept. Most of my female friends fit that bill too. If you don't have that naughty streak, I'll constantly offend you, so I guess that's why most of my women companions are similar in nature! Haha!

The nice girl is easy to define. She is sweet, thoughtful, and kind. Good with animals and children, she reaches out to help friends in need and loves to nurture those close to her. She will bend to accomodate and knows the value of compromise. The nice girl will work hard to keep the friendship or relationship going because she simply cares about YOU.

The 'other' streak can come in two forms: Plain Naughty or Naughty Bitch. Plain Naughty is just the Ludacris statement that Amanda quotes--a lady in the streets but a freak in the bed. Her main quality is that she abandons decorum once sex enters the picture. She is wild, enthusiastic, and creative in her sexual relationships, openly sexual and flirty.

I'm actually more of the Naughty Bitch type...haha!

The Naughty Bitch has the Naughty streak as far as sex goes, but the Bitch part also gives the Nice Girl a hell of a lot of backbone. This aspect of a gal means she will bend and bend for you (per a Nice Girl), but push her too far and SHE is not the one who breaks...YOU are. The Bitch half of this streak is not constantly present. She is, of course, under most circumstances, a nice girl. It's just when the situation warrants it, Bitch appears. She can be aggressive, assertive, fiesty, and mouthy. She can say what she means, and she can show a temper. This girl is nobody's doormat. She gives her kindness to those who deserve it, and she will allow them way more leeway than the rest of the world, but she still has that boundary you cannot cross. If you do, heaven help you. Sometimes, she can combine the Naughty Bitch elements at once, giving the guy somebody whom he needs to subdue and conquor. The Naughty Bitch is flirty, fun, and still very nice...but not all of the time.

I'm definitely a Nice Girl with a Naughty Bitch Streak. I will do just about anything for anybody if it makes his or her life better. I LIKE helping people. I LIKE feeling needed. I WANT to be near you and make your path on this planet that much easier. However, if you take advantage of my niceness, you will regret it. I have a fierce temper and a hell of a lot of backbone. When it's unleashed, it's a sight to see. My ex AND Alex both have told me on several occasions: You know, you are hot as hell when you are angry...as long as it's not directed at me. Haha! I am nobody's doormat. I DO believe that the Nice Girl isn't bothered by bending more here and there than the Not So Nice Girl. That is, for some girls who truly are more self-centered, they would never do some of the things I do willingly because it inconveniences them. I'm never inconvenienced helping out a real friend or a lover...that's a priviledge. So, sometimes women or men who are Not So Nice will look at a Nice Girl or Guy's behavior and mumble that they are pushovers. The Nice Guy/Bastard or Nice Girl/Bitch are NOT pushovers. They are just more tolerant and indulgent, and their limits are broader on what they can take. Just don't cross that line...that's all you need to know...and you have a loyal friend for life who has your back whenever you need it.

And on a separate rant on the Naughty Streak, I feel badly for girls who lack it. Naughty means you are not ashamed of that which makes you a sexual being. Naughty means you relish pleasure and want to please your lover too. When a woman becomes so caught up in her upbringing on what "a nice girl" should do in the bedroom, she loses out on about 50 billion orgasms. Monogamy can become monotony pretty damn fast if you aren't willing to be creative and do things like have sex somewhere other than ON the bed and IN the bedroom every single time. That naughty streak is not only a boon to the man the Nice Girl is dating, it's a boon to the Nice Girl herself! Of course, it only works if you have a partner who is also bearing a naughty streak of some sort.

Anyway, I can't presume to tell you WHAT GUYS WANT. I'm not a guy. All I can say is that the Nice Guy-Bastard has an equivalent, and that my closest female friends and I seem to fit it as the Nice Girl-Naughty Bitch. Haha!

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Cookie Asked Nicely

...and who can resist Cookie Monster when he does just that?

I'm going to do the lists that CM posted on his blog. Here we go!

7 Things I Plan To Do Before I Die:

1) Write a story or book or somesuch and get it published

2) Reproduce one last time

3) Buy a house

4) Send my kids to college...somehow...so they don't have to pull an Angie and kill themselves to get their degree(s)

5) Learn French

6) Travel to at least three (3) new countries I've never seen before now

7) Get health insurance

7 Things I Cannot Do

1) Draw

2) Play a musical instrument competently

3) Fix a car

4) Belch the alphabet

5) Diet

6) Exercise regularly for longer than a couple of months

7) Quantum Physics


7 Things That Attract me to the same or opposite sex

1) Black hair (the darker, the better), blue eyes, strong jawline

2) Intelligence

3) Quick wit

4) Paternal instinct towards animals and children

5) High libido

6) Understanding of the word "partner" rather than "do it all, biatch"

7) "Warm" rather than cold and distant

7 Things I Say Most Often

1) Crap, hell, damn

2) HEY! (Usually said loudly to interrupt mayhem by children)

3) No (Remember: children)

4) Yes, and I would like a million dollars (said in response to preposterous requests that my children or other people make)

5) Hi, hungry! My name is Kira! (I say this about three to four times a day...every time my children say "I'm hungry"...)

6) Je t'aime (not just to Alex...it's the one thing in French Ari will say back and forth too)

7) I don't think so

7 Celebrity Crushes

Please note: although I will certainly stare at pictures of Sean Bean, etc, I don't often give this one much thought, so bear with me here as I puzzle through names

1) Matthew Broderick (please don't ask...just watch Ladyhawk and shut up)

2) Viggo Mortensen (I hope that's Aragorn at least)

3) Johnny Depp

4) Alan Rickman (Snape! Snape! Snape! Actually, it's his voice that makes me wet)

5) Angelina Jolie (at least, if I were to switch teams, she's my first choice)

6) Orlando Bloom (mostly for Legolas and his character in Pirates of the Carribean)

7) Sean Bean (Boromir! Do we see a LotR theme here?)

7 People I Want To Do This List (trying not to tag those already tagged)

1) Amanda

2) Angie

3) Laura

4) April

5) Mandy

6) Sandra

7) A*

HAHAHA! Now YOU try it! :)

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

The Nice Guy-Bastard

For the longest time, I have been mulling over a post by Sandra that she made about why she's not attracted to nice guys. I, of course, had to defend the nice guy concept because I'm definitely in a romantic relationship with one. There is no doubt that Alex is the nicest of guys. He opens up doors and kisses hands. He massages me every single night (back, legs, arms...whatever I prefer). He loves my kids like his own...is sweet and considerate to my family...and very willing to help out others in need. Blushing over incidents of embarrassment, he can be shy at times and soft-spoken. Alex is kind to animals and emotionally sensitive/empathetic. Everybody who has met him has thought: wow, Kira sure is dating a NICE GUY!

But I totally understand Sandra's point. MOST nice guys end up sliding into the boring category. Sure, you want somebody to love you and respect you, but you want somebody to have backbone and give you a challenge here and there too. Many nice guys bend TOO much. They accomodate to a point wherein they lose themselves. That's not sexy. That's not chemically appealing. Sandra also pushed forth the idea that, in her experience, nice guys are crap in bed. No wildness. No passion. No burning and fervered screwing up against a wall or whatnot. Well, I can't disagree with her there either. The nice guys I have known in the past have fit her stereotype. However, I remain with a nice guy. Why?

Well, because I found out that you can order the nice guy with a backbone and a bastard streak model, that's why.

Let's start with the bastard streak concept. Alex rarely shows this aspect of himself except occasional flashes of teasing with his friends. Generally, if you trigger this response in him, you're already screwed. Go ahead. Say the hail marys and kiss your ass good bye. The man is very accomodating and sweet, but if he feels you've tried to take advantage of him or...god forbid...you have hurt somebody he loves, that's it for you. To look at him and his sunny disposition, you would never assume he could dish out black eyes at will if provoked, but he can and will. For example, a year or so ago, his mom's boyfriend became hideously drunk and obnoxious. Alex blew off what the boyfriend did to HIM, but the second the boyfriend tried to hit Alex's brother (note the 'tried' word...his drunk ass couldn't connect), Alex gave him a black eye or two, pummeled the crap out of him, and tossed him out of the apartment complex. The end. Don't fuck with his loved ones. You'd just never suspect that from chatting with Mr. I Can Blush...aka I Always Smile!

He's very indulgent of what I want to do. He defintely spoils me rotten. However, once in a while I push it too far. Politely, firmly, he then reigns me in. Believe me, I need a man who can do that. If a guy can't put the firm stops on me, I keep on walking all over him. Yes, I realize that makes me sound bitchy and awful. I'm just trying to be HONEST here. If I know I can get away with it, I will. If I know I can't, I won't. Backbone is an essential part to MY Mr. Nice Guy.

Now, in the last category, what I find essential is a nice guy who knows how to be wild and dominant and passionate in sex. "I want a nice guy who is a pervert in bed!" Yes, this very statement has been said by me many times in my life, and I know that it's the female version of the "lady-whore" syndrome. Hitchcock once said he wanted a lady in the streets and a whore in the bedroom. I'm sure a lot of guys want that type of woman. Hey, guess what? This woman wants THAT kind of guy! haha! I love the fact that Alex is a complete gentlemen when we are in public, but we'll come home and the kids will be at the ex's...I will think I can go into our apartment and fetch maybe a coke from the refrigerator...but no, suddenly I'm thrown over the arm of my sofa and my dress is up past my hips...haha! FANTASTIC! What can I say? I'm a sucker for that sort of behavior because what it shouts out to me is, "Damn, you are SO hot that there is no discussion...I need you now!" I love any sort of sexual encounter that makes me feel that I'm so totally desired that he NEEDS me. I'm betting I'm at least making sense to a few of the gals here.

So, I guess what I'm trying to say is that a straight up, all around nice guy can be rather dull. But a nice guy who knows WHEN to be a bastard and WHEN to flash backbone? Now THAT is sexy!

And I'm glad as hell to have found one!

Monday, September 05, 2005

Checking In!

Hey guys! Alex is sleeping now and the kids are with the ex, so I thought I'd hop on and say hi. Everything is bliss (surprise, surprise!). I just feel so much more settled and content now. It hardly matters what is happening during the course of the day...I just feel happy.

Alex didn't get in until 11p Saturday night. I had to take the kids to the airport late, and they both fell asleep on the way there. Ariana, at 7, woke up when we got there and managed to stay awake and greet Alex. Jared, however, slept through the whole thing...haha! It cracked me up, actually. I carried him to the airport asleep and placed him on a chair, where he continued to sleep. He barely cracked an eye when Alex arrived. On the way back to the car, I had to make him walk a short distance so that I could help Alex carry a bag (Alex already had two suitcases and his laptop to contend with), and he did so in his sleep. Then he went firmly back into dreamland when we hit the car. Back at the apartment, he curled up at the toilet and snored away when I asked him to go potty before I tucked him in. The three of the rest of us were laughing at the poor boy! He woke up at the usual time.

Of course Alex found time in the DC airport to fetch a bouquet of flowers for me. He never fails unless they are just out of flowers or don't sell them at his connecting flight. And yes, I have a lovely box of Jeff De Bruges chocolates, two bottles of hermitage wine, some lemon tartlettes, and some other French candies I asked him to bring. He sure knows how to spoil me!

When Alex first came to America, I fed him Mexican food. He had never had it before me. Why? Well, Mexican food just isn't popular in France. You CAN get a few minor Old El Paso items in their grocery stores now, but you can't get sour cream (creme fraiche is close if it's thickened) and you can't get cheddar (cantal is close enough I suppose). Anyway, he tried it over here and was not impressed the first time. It was a whole new range of spices and flavors to taste, and I think it overwhelmed him at first. Now, however, he LOVES the stuff! He even makes Mexican food for his family back over in France, and they enjoy it as well. Since he can't really get Mexican food over in France, he decided at midnight that what he really wanted was Taco Bell. Hey, no problem as they are open late, right?

We got the kids in bed as soon as possible so we could properly greet each other *cough*, but then we both went to sleep for the evening. Since the kids were still here, Alex slept on the sofa and I slept on my bed. It's not that I plan on teaching my children that pre-marital sex is wrong; I just have already been teaching them that sex is a sacred act that creates life, and therefore should be treated with respect and done only with the person you love. When you are older. MUCH OLDER!!! I can't very well reinforce that idea if I'm having them climb into my bedroom in the morning when they wake up only to see Alex and I in there together. If we ever get engaged, that's the point when I'd allow Alex in my bed when the kids are around. Needless to say, last night I was relieved to be able to sleep with Alex in the bed. Yay!

Sunday was pleasant for the first half. Alex spent some special time with the kids (throwing paper airplanes and rolling down hills here at the apartment complex) before they had to leave with my ex. The ex likes Alex, but dislikes the part wherein Alex "won" me. He is always great around Alex when the kids are there, and for that I give him a nice gold star for being mature about the issue. However, the second Alex was in the bathroom he was trying to grab at me in a very territorial fashion. He was reaching for my tits...telling me I looked hot...and mentioning that our sex life used to be terrific. Therefore, I don't think I was imagining that he was hitting on me. Oh well. At least he waited until Alex AND the kids weren't in the immediate room to see it.

After Rob left, Alex and I found a way to entertain ourselves. Imagine that! A few hours later, I made dinner for us. Alex is a HUGE fan of candles, so all the candles around the house were lit, and we had a lovely dinner. Then we enjoyed ourselves more and I received a full body massage. I fell asleep after he had been going at it for an hour and a half. Yes, folks, that is *THE* way to fall asleep: being massaged into blissful dreamland!

I shall have to make him something special for breakfast. I make these hungarian crepes with a cheese filling that resemble in some ways cheese blintzes...perhaps I'll shoot for those since he adores them. Mutual spoiling is terrific. I'm sooooooo happy right now! I can't believe how much happier I am now than I've been all summer long.

Hey! And tonight! The Melting Pot! God I love fondue!

Take care, blogworld!

Saturday, September 03, 2005


Alex is arriving shortly. I have not seen the man since mid-May. I will have better things to do than blog. Ok, well, we have the kids right now and the Ex doesn't get them until tomorrow, so actually, I might end up checking in tomorrow morning after I make breakfast for the crew. Whenever the Ex picks them up, however, I expect that for a little bit we will find SOME WAY to entertain ourselves that does NOT involve the computer.


Yeah. That's whut I'm talkin' bout!

Side note: that picture was taken by his family when I visited France last year. They told us they wanted a shot of us kissing. Welcome to France, where everybody who is a couple kisses everywhere, everytime, and no little old ladies give you evil glares! Well, unless they are visiting Americans who haven't picked up on French culture yet!

See how long my hair is in that picture? My hair seems to grow about five inches per year. I need ten inches for the Locks of Love program, so it's every two years that I chop off my hair. What is the Locks of Love program, you ask? So glad you wanted to know, I reply! Locks of Love is a non-profit organization that makes real hair wigs for free for little kids with chemo who are now bald. You have NO idea how much self-esteem it gives back to a child when he or she has a wig that is completely realistic to use. I used to work with kids at the H. Lee Moffit Children's Cancer Clinic when I was a high schooler, and believe me...you think it's rough for an ADULT to lose hair during cancer treatments? Gah! So, here's how it works: I love having very long hair. My favorite length is about what you see in the picture above. However, what I do is let it grow out about five more inches and THEN chop off the minimum ten inches they need for a decent wig. So, right after I chop it, I wince a lot when I try to twirl my hair (habit I've had forever) or look in a mirror because honestly, it's too short for me. Then I remember how bad it'd look if I were bald, and I smile and move on. It's a WONDERFUL program...who says a woman who is perpetually too broke has nothing to give? I can do three things VERY WELL. I can think. I can cook. And I can grow hair. haha! Please, if you know anybody who has really long hair and is considering cutting it, tell them about this program. They RELY on donations of real hair to make it work. I made sure in Sept 2003 and now here in 2005 I did it at that time so the students would ask why I chopped my hair, and then I could plug the program to them. It worked. I have had three or four students come up to me later on and TELL me that they heard of the program due to me and donated hair! Yay!

Wanna see how short the hair is now? It still feels wierd, guys...give me about two seconds of sniffing self-pity for feeling ug with the shorter hair *sniff sniff*...ok, I feel better now...actually, Ariana (god bless her genius level emotional IQ!) made me feel better instantly. She leaned over and whispered to me right after I had it done, "Mommy! It makes you look EVEN YOUNGER!" Haha! I told her, don't whisper that! SHOUT IT!!!!

Ok, here you go! (side note: sorry, all I have is a webcam to take pictures, and therefore it is rather grainy)


It'll grow back pretty fast, though. By Christmas, I'll have enough 'extra' to be completely content. I tried as short as shoulder length long, long ago and it doesn't look right. I need 'longer' hair to frame my face properly.

Ok, going to tidy up the house now and GO GET ALEX AT THE AIRPORT!!!!! YAY!!!!

Friday, September 02, 2005

Memories Continued: Compassion

In light of what is going on currently in New Orleans, I have decided that this next memory MUST be presented NOW.

I think I have mentioned repeatedly that my parents and family are just very good people who believe in the concept of noblesse oblige, or the duty of those who are rich/better off to take care of those who are poor/worse off. I suppose it extends further than that. My mom has a firm belief that compassion and reaching out to others is the key to why we are here. I've heard her say it often enough. And she lives this message just about every day with the extensive volunteer work she's done and the way she helps others.

I was ten years old and we went to the mall to buy a few things. This incident happened before it was common to have cell phones at all, so my mom decided to use a pay phone to call home to my dad and let him know we'd be late. Right next to the phone was an elderly woman with very white hair who seemed vaguely distressed. She started talking to my mom because everybody starts talking to my mom. Honestly. I've seen folks make a bee line for her to converse with her and they don't even know her. She just has an aura that screams, "I'm friendly! Let's chat!"

I remember listening with great skepticism as the older woman told her tale. She had been stuck at the mall for three days, she said (where did she sleep? Didn't the mall folks kick her out?). She was waiting for somebody to pick her up and the person never came. She was certain that the person would come that day, but BOY was she starving...

...my mom immediately marched her to a food place in the mall and bought her the biggest platter of whatever they served. I scowled. I figure my mom had been taken in for an idiot there. Didn't she SEE there was no way this woman could have slept at the mall for three days? Once we were out of earshot, I complained to my mother, "Mom! What if she was taking you for a ride? I mean, come on, that story..."

I will NEVER EVER forget my mom's response:

With a very calm expression, she smiled at me, totally at peace as if it hardly mattered if somebody 'took her for a ride.' "Honey, if that's true, then the worst thing that just happened is that I fed another human being."

I was stunned into silence, and mulled that one over for days. If you can tell from some of my posts here and there, this memory is of an incident that molded directly how I act even today. I still remember everything...the lighting in the mall...the old lady's face...the pay phones...the fake marble floor of the mall as I stared at it and we walked, pondering what just happened...

(Oh, and PS, Alex got his visa!!!! So tomorrow night, he's here!!!! YAY!)

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Twitch, Twitch

Things that settle me down when I am anxietized:

lots of high grade chocolate
winning the lottery...ok, I've never won the lotto, but I'm assuming it'd settle me

Items on this list I can do or take or accomplish:


Massage and sex is Alex, and that's part of the reason why I'm worked up. His visa HAS to arrive in the mail on the promised date of tomorrow because his plane leaves on Saturday. So, he's not here, and that means no options there.

Zoloft...been off it for a few years. Don't have any in the house. No health insurance, either.

High grade chocolate...no. Although Alex is bringing me some, so damnit, another reason I need him here.

Winning the lotto...gotta enter to win so I'm screwed there.

Alcohol...oh I've got alcohol here, but right now I'm still in the OH GOD NO NO NO SHUT UP GET IT AWAY ARRRGGGHHH! phase with alcohol after Friday night's debauchery.

So, I remain worked up.

Why am I worked up, besides Alex? Well, student Z stuff (long story, but attacker is indeed on campus). Will I have gas? Plus, I'm reading too much about what's going on in New Orleans and it makes me just want to puke. I'm clinging to my kids and saying stay healthy, don't get caught up in a natural disaster. Lots to do organizing classes. And then I think about Alex, gas, and Z and I realize, well, people in N.O. are getting raped too and starving and dying and there are corpses everywhere, so shut up.

Twitch, twitch.

It will be all right, yes?

*peeks in Pandora's box and sees hope cowering in the corner*

I Will Never Do Half-Nekkid Thursday Again

I just read Sandra's blog today and found out about this tradition. I don't think I will make it any regular part of my blog because I only have one (1) half-nekkid picture I'm willing to share.

I like this one. Honestly. I did it with a webcam a year ago and I like how it is sensual and erotic, but not porn. It shows everything and nothing. Humor me. I'm very fond of this picture.


It's always odd to me to see how my hair color looks in different photos. Put me in bright sunlight, or any really bright light, and you see a LOT of red (see July 26th or June 26th on my blog for outside pics...always...too...lazy...to...link). I get whistled at with mumbles of, "nice redhead" when in the sun outside. But sometimes, inside, it looks more brown. In this photo, on the right hand side you can see the red in my hair. On the left hand side, it looks more brown. I'm addressing these comments to the ladies because I'm aware that the men are not staring at my hair. Haha!

Another Rant--Because No One Can Have Just One!

I'm sorry guys, but there is yet another way in which you have it made.

All you have to do is go to your underwear drawer, pick out whatever underwear you want to wear (boxers, briefs, boxer-briefs...depending on preference), pick out your pants, and go.


That's right. We have to do it out of order. And we have to own about 50 different STYLES of underwear for all our different pants and dresses too. 'K? Let me explain.

Do I want to wear tight pants? Well, options are thongs or no panties so we don't have pantilines.

Do I want to wear lower waisted pants (low riders or worse)? Well, tangas then.

Do I want to wear TIGHT low riders? Ok, so then I need a low rider g-string.

Oh wait, the pants are white? I guess I'd better make sure I didn't pick out black!

THEN!!! To top it all off!!!! We have to pick out our shirt and THEN the bra! Some bras allow for cleavage, some don't; some bras have the straps in different locations so that they can accomodate a different shirt or dress; and some bras must be strapless or have clear straps in order to work. Hell, don't forget if you choose a camisole top with a shelf bra already in it! Then it's NO BRA!

A man whips out his boxer briefs, slides them on, pulls out pants and a matching shirt, and he's done.

A woman might end up switching panties and/or bra if this doesn't work or that shows too much undergarment, etc.

And you wonder why women take so long to get dressed...sheesh...