Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Random Schtuff

Back home in Philly after whirlwind trips to CA. Going home is both good and bad. It reminds me how much I miss my family and friends and my hometown. It also proves to me how crazy I am for moving to the East Coast. It's freezing here right now and it was in the high 80s when I was in Oxnard. Such a bummer, dude! I am sooooo not ready to get back to work, even tho I have a laundry list of things I need to get done. Feeling lazy and wanting to go on vacation again. Do you ever find you need a vacation after you've been on vacation? Yeah, I feel like I need that today. My travels were surprisingly easy, and I have to say that I was met with nothing but luck my entire travel experience. I purchased some last minute tickets through Hotwire where they give you a much cheaper rate for flying, but you have no idea what airline you are flying on or when you are leaving. Lucky for us, we got the United nonstop flight out on Fri night leaving at 6pm and getting in at 9pm, which was exactly what we wanted. Sadly, our flight was delayed and delayed, but United was super cool, booking us on a bunch of other flights, trying to get us to LAX earlier. When it was clear our nonstop to LAX would leave, just 5 hours late, we decided to go for that one, since being stuck in Denver or Chicago would not work for us. They gave us meal vouchers ($15 each!) and the flight was nearly empty, which gave us plenty of room to spread out. Coming back, our flight left on time (with a woman pilot, too! soooo exciting!) and got in early. We weren't seated together, so I asked if we might be able to sit together and they gave us the seats in the exit row (tons of legroom!). The flight was uneventful and pretty short. Weather was cool here in Philly, but it felt nice to be home (again). Now I've got things I have to take care of, like, I think my cat is sick, I feel like I'm coming down with something (my throat hurts), our roof is leaking, I have a ton of expts to do, but I'm just not feeling it. My house is pretty messy, I have loads of laundry to do and I'd like to plant some flowers in the backyard. Whew! I don't know how people have jobs in which they travel all the time. I'd like to to be a loooooong time before I see the inside of an airplane again.....

Friday, April 25, 2008

Haiku Going Home Friday

Heading home today
Looking forward to seeing
Family and friends.


Sad occasion to
be visiting but people
coming together.


Celebrate a life
cut too short. So little time
to enjoy family.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Book Review Wednesday

I borrowed this book from Randi when I was in CA recently. I really enjoyed Case Histories by the same author and was interested to read another of her novels. I enjoyed this book as a casual read, but I wouldn't say that it moved any mountains for me, which is fine. The novel picks up a couple years after Case Histories ends and is following our favorite reluctant hero, Jackson Brodie in another "adventure". The plot begins as Jackson is in Edinburgh, Scotland, visiting with his girlfriend who is performing in a play there during a festival. The author has a wonderful way for portraying the same event from many different perspectives, and of course all the characters are witnesses or participants in a particularly brutal road rage incident. Jackson gets sucked back into his old investigative / policing ways and a mystery ensues. The bodies do not stack up, as one might suspect, and we get to know the characters in a little more depth. The book was an easy read, flowed quite well but was unremarkable to me. The connections between the characters were easily assumed and the plot was mostly predictable. There is a twist at the end, but again, I could have called that from a mile away. The characters are a bit like caricatures of stereotyped people: the scorned wife, the single mother, the reclusive author, the old cop who just can't quit his investigative ways. Altogether, it's an interesting read, not too boring, and something I would suggest for a beach read, a relaxing read, but certainly not a challenging one. It was, however, exactly what I needed at the time.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008


Things have been pretty rough lately, I won't lie. But I've found out that I have an amazing family who is there for each other all the time, 24/7. I've also found out that physical presence means so much. Just being there for someone is such a huge relief. And people have been so supportive and loving towards me, which is so nice, words cannot describe. I just appreciate everyone's thoughts, prayers, love, attention, caring, empathy, etc. You are all so amazing. If Dennis were here, he would say it's a love fest :)

Monday, April 21, 2008

I couldn't have said it better...

Listen closely to the winds and hear the gentle whisper of an angels wings in flight. Look far into the sky and see the shimmering stardust left behind. Close your eyes and feel the love our very own, very real new guardian angel. Dennis is gone from this earth and is now at peace in his Father's arms.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Some Sound Advice

Taking the red eye back to the East Coast and getting stuck with the middle seat - let me tell you, not the best idea I've had in recent times. I took a Tylenol PM before boarding, but just could not fall asleep well. Ended up twisting my neck around so I could lay my head down on the tray table thingy- remember naptime in elementary school? Not quite as comfortable. Then the tiny woman next to me decided to use me as a pillow for part of the trip, while the guy on my other side slept like a baby (jealous much?). I got in to PHL on time, but felt drunk/hungover/high or something like that. Made it home where I happily crawled into bed next to Alex and slept for a few hours. Made my way into work waaaay late yesterday, thinking I could function, but that's not really the case. I was mostly tired blabbering all day long. Took a nap upon coming home and went to bed around 12 last night. Finally woke up this morning feeling mostly me again - jeez! Red eye travel just not for me!
BUT, I did have a wonderful / sad / emotional / beautiful time in sunny CA. I will post some pics coming up. And some advice for you? Check out my cousin's website. Her name's Adrian and she has a voice that will knock your socks off! She sings "cowboy" music, but don't let that name fool you. She's written all her own stuff, has a CD out and is just a great entertainer. Go ahead, check her out!

Monday, April 14, 2008

Book Review Monday

I've recently been somewhat "memoir-ed out". That is, it seems anyone with any kind of story has come out with a memoir lately and they just seem to be trying to out-do one another. And then some authors have come clean about lying in their memoirs, which makes me want to avoid the entire genre altogether. However, my boyfriend's mom sent this book to me and I could not put it down for one minute! This is the story of Jeannette Walls growing up in a somewhat non-traditional family. Her parents are together, but they have a hard time finding and keeping work. Jeannette and her siblings are forced to mostly fend for themselves in the world, on occasion starving, digging trash out of the garbage or stealing food from various locations. Her parents are not very concerned with raising kids, and do so in a most unusual way. Parts of the book were outrageous, like when the kids find a diamond ring in some junk and take it home to their mom, thinking they can pawn it for some food and supplies, but their mom just keeps the ring, saying it makes up for the ring their father made her pawn years before. My descriptions of this book fall short of truly describing how wonderful this work really is. The story is told in short, sometimes ironic fashion. Most of the stories are unbelievable, yet somehow believable, if that makes any sense. The author asks for no sympathy, but allows the reader to empathize with her plight in growing up. There are many situations with which I identified, even though my upbringing was quite traditional. Altogether, I highly recommend this book - you will not be able to put it down!