Posts Tagged With: Lessons

Working Late – ADVICE FROM YOU!

I haven’t had one of these “Please help!” posts in a while. Maybe because we’re feeling more settled in our marriage and we don’t have as many moments that leave us thinking, “I wonder how other people figure this stuff out…” Or maybe because life has been so crazy focused on our house and work that we haven’t had a lot of time to really dig deep in these marriage issues that sometimes come up.

As I write this, Hubs is still not home from work on a Friday night. He’s worked long hours all week. And all last week. And the week before that.

We were gone all last week because he had to work out of town. I went with him hoping to spend some quality time together during the evenings and on the weekends, but even that time was mostly filled with him responding to emails, finishing projects on his laptop while I read, or him needing to go to bed early so he could get up early and do it all over again the next day.

I love that he loves his job. And I’m so thankful he can do something he enjoys (mostly!) to support our little family and help us have this beautiful home we love.

I even like that he sometimes has work to do at home. I don’t mind reading quietly or working on projects of my own for an hour or so of an evening if he has work to do. It’s nice to be able to sit quietly with our own projects and still just be there with each other.

But I’m at a loss as to what to do to help him relax when he comes home and has time to unplug from the day or week he’s had.

Don’t get me wrong, we still enjoy our evenings together, but lately, I can tell work’s been on his mind more than before. I know every job is a different situation and there are certain times when we need to be accessible by email and phone. But I’m just wondering how we decide what things are “work-free” zones and how to best really commit to being present in those moments when work is always in the back of our mind?

So, friends, tell me, what are your best tips for helping your honey relax when he can’t stop thinking about work? And how do you find the balance between work and play and time at home?

Categories: Advice | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Thoughts from home

Last week, Hubs and I weren’t home.

It was the first time being away from our (“finished”) house, and I have to admit how much I simply missed being here!

Hubs was traveling for work and since I work from home and can technically work anywhere with an internet connections, I went with him and spent my time in the hotel and at Panera, just using up free wi-fi and eating cinnamon crunch bagels. Yum. We squeezed in a short couple of days on the weekends for a little mini vacation in the midst of all that work stuff.

But now that we’re back home, here are some things I noticed and have on my mind that I wanted to share with you all.

1. I love not living out of a suitcase. I did that during college a lot because I was living on campus during the week and driving back home to see Wyatt and my family and friends on the weekends. I hate wearing the same clothes over and over again because it’s easy and happens to be freshly washed so I don’t have to dig it out of my closet. I hate thinking of a shirt I want to wear, only to realize it’s back at home in my instead of packed in my suitcase. Plus, I’m great at packing to go on a trip, but I have the re-packing that has to occur every time we move locations or want to pick up the hotel room. I’m not so good at removing clothes from the suitcase without everything getting super messy in there.

2. I love our own bed. Enough said, right?

3. Those bagels, free breakfasts, and dinners out did a number on how well my jeans fit. Yikes. Let me be clear, I know I’m not fat, so this is not be saying that. It’s just me admitting (mostly to myself) that I need to spend a little time focusing on getting more active. I snuck in a few runs while we were gone, and we took one, super-steep hike, but I still feel like I’m at my “winter weight” already. I do believe bodies keep the weight they need to survive and maybe this is my body’s way of preparing me for a cold winter? Or maybe it’s my body’s way of motivating me to go run today.

4. I’m so lazy about my appearance at home by myself during the day. No makeup, messy hair, sweats and Wyatt’s hoodie with warm socks…it’s all so fabulous and yet, so embarrassing to see when I look in the mirror. Do us both a favor and call before stopping by for a visit, deal?

5. Christmas is getting closer! And that means Thanksgiving is really close, too! I remember how exciting this time of year was in college because it meant lots of time off from school was coming up. Now that Hubs and I work instead of go to school, it’s just great because it means lots of cuddling on the couch, visiting with friends and family, and eating yummy foods. That’s why I need to focus on number 3 above!

6. Work is work now. At first, all this freelance writing seemed sort of like I was simply playing at work, doing something I enjoyed, taking my time to get projects finished, and having a good time. Now, I’m still having a good time, but I’m busy! I worked my first two 8-hour days last week for this freelance gig and it was exciting and scary because time management is such a huge part of my day! I probably should be working right now, but I feel so bad about how I’ve been neglecting you all lately that I had to take some time to catch up.

My little “office” in our hotel room for the week. It was as big as our apartment!

7. I love southern Missouri. Yes, some people think Branson is cheesy and corny and not at all relaxing or fun. I say those people have never been to the Branson I know and love. Local diners for breakfast, beautiful views, nature trails, antique stores, shopping (if we want it), familiar (but not what we have at home) restaurants, and that smell. To me, the air smells a little sweet, almost like a mixture between maple syrup and crisp freshness, and dusty, fall leaves. It makes me feel peaceful and happy and excited all at the same time.

This doesn’t do it justice because it’s dark, but look how peaceful it is here! How can anyone not love a place like this?

8. Fall is possibly the best time for a road trip. I love seeing all the leaves!

The only thing I love more than fall leaves on road trips is Christmas lights on road trips.

9. Coming home to a clean house is SO worth the effort to clean it before you leave. I hate the feeling of stress that immediately hits me when I walk in the door and see dirty dishes, laundry, and clutter. Ick.

10. Hubs is certainly the only person I could ever imagine sharing this life with. He’s just wonderful. From the way he always wants me to pick the restaurant so I can have what I’m in the mood for to the fact that he loves to drive and I love to ride, traveling with him is always my favorite kind of adventure. Last week was stressful for him because of some long hours and hard tasks at work, so we didn’t get to have as much “fun” as I’d planned, but he’s still the best partner and friend I could have. Plus, he made up for all the not-so-fun times by being extra silly and special while we were together for those sweet moments at the end of each day.

Yes, we spent some time in this crazy, sorta creepy place. It was a “wholesale” taxidermy store inside a giant flea market/antique store. See why I love road trips with this man? (P.S. check out that bear!! Only $3,250)

Okay, that’s enough for now. Why don’t you tell me some things that are on your mind? You don’t have to choose ten things…how about two!?

Categories: Adventures | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

Newlywed Resolutions–LAST CHANCE!

In case you didn’t know, there are only 8 more Wednesdays before Christmas.

That means if you haven’t yet accomplished your New Year’s resolutions, it’s time to do that.

Here’s a sneak peak back at our resolutions:

5. Write at least five things that are just for me. I can worry about what to use them for later, if anything.

6. Run more races. I’d love to do another half…maybe a full 26.2? I’m young now, and my knees and ankles and hips will only get worse, right? I only ran 1 or 2 in 2011, and they were fun, so I’m ready for more.

7. Finish reading 8 books that I ALREADY own and have squished into our bookshelf. I’m terrible about buying new books instead of reading ones I already own but haven’t read.

See? It’s full.

8. Use more coupons and take advantage of price matching. I also need to do a better job of keeping track of how much we spend and save.

I can tell you we have NOT accomplished everything on our list yet. Yikes. I’m still working on it. And trying to focus on making measurable progress so I’ll have some things to share with you in January when it comes time to make our resolutions for next year…

Here’s a fun game, which resolutions do you think I have or haven’t accomplished this year? I’d love to hear your guesses!

So what about you? Have you checked in our your resolutions recently? How are you feeling about that progress? Have any you totally gave up on? Let me know!

(Also, as a side note, progress is coming along on the new blog home. I can’t wait to reveal it to you guys, and start getting excited…word on the street* is that there will be a little *giveaway* to help celebrate the opening!)

*And by street, I mean the winding pathways of semi-crazy-semi-organized blog thoughts in my head. 🙂

 

Categories: Everyday Life | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

No more tears…

No this isn’t a commercial for some sort of extra gentle baby shampoo, but yes, I am talking about tears, the things that fall from our eyes when we are hurt or upset, not to be confused with tears, or rips in paper or clothing.

The English language is confusing.

Sheesh.

But I did spend my entire college career studying it…well, that and a bunch of other stuff considering I went to a private liberal arts college.

Anyway, back to my original topic…tears.

I’ve been crying a lot less than I did the first year of our marriage.

This is just a happy picture to show you I was really, in fact, happy during our first year of marriage, even though I did cry a lot. Think of the crying as small intermissions between all the happiness, ok?

Not that the first year of our marriage was sad or unhappy. Quite the contrary. I was super happy to be married to my best friend…but I also cried a lot.

Why?

Well, I’m not sure, but I’m willing to venture some guesses.

(Check out the links to see some earlier blog posts that help explain all these little ramblings!)

1. I didn’t have a job.

This was a big one for me. I’ve never really struggled with anything as much as I struggled to find a job. We didn’t need the money, but it would have been nice while trying to maintain a budget and save as much as possible for a down payment. And it certainly hurt my pride, confidence and general self-esteem to feel like a failure for so long. I went through so many stages of dealing with it: determination, hope, peace, anger, embarrassment, hope, frustration, peace, anxiety, hope, fear, anger,  disappointment…you get the idea. And though I learned a lot about gratitude and humility and trust, it was a struggle the entire time. And even though this self-employed freelance writing thing is still hard, I’m so thankful for the opportunity to do something I love and that will contribute to our finances, even just at a part-time level.

2. I was worried about finding and affording a house we loved.

We all know that worked out well for us, and that we now have the biggest project we’ve ever taken on together as a fabulous home, but for awhile, it was hard to imagine leaving our little apartment, hard to wrap my head around how much this all would cost, hard to decide where we wanted to put down real roots and raise our kiddos, hard to figure out just how much house we needed and how much project we could take on…but finding our home was a journey, that’s for sure.

3. I was hormonal.

Let’s face it, this is still true. But maybe being on the pill for over 1 1/2 years now has finally allowed my body to calm down and stop freaking out over every tiny little change in the hormone levels.

4. I was tired.

Remember our sleeping adventures, like Hubs’ sleep talking, and figuring out our sides of the bed, and our different sleep schedules? I didn’t sleep so well for the first few months of our marriage, or the first several months. I still have nights where it’s a struggle, like last night, when I was woken up by snores and then I laid there for fifteen minutes, half-asleep and nearly incoherent, before realizing it was coming from the sleeping Hubs beside me and yes, I could in fact, wake him up and tell him to roll over. After which he got a little grumpy because I was pretty persistent after not believing his half-asleep, “okay,” with no signs of movement. Anyway, when I’m tired, I get salty, and when I’m salty, I tend to cry easily. I’m sleeping better these days, for the most part, or maybe adjusting to living on less shut-eye.

5. I was homesick.

Again, I was thrilled to be married. And I loved it for that first year of newlywed-ness…but I also missed my family. And I felt a little alienated from them because there just wasn’t much opportunity for visiting (my mom doesn’t drive in the city…at all). Moving to our new house in this new neighborhood is perfect. We’re closer. Our parents can (and do!) visit more often. And the biggest part of this? This house is now HOME. Our apartment was home, too, but never in the way I feel about our house.

And that my friends is why the last few months have held far less salty, wet kisses as Hubs attempts to cheer me up, less red, swollen eyes, and much more giggles, laughs and smiles.

Not that I wasn’t giddy and happy during our first year of marriage, but settling into this married life sure feels good.

 

What about you? What was hard for you in your early married years? Do you cry a lot? Did you used to cry a lot? How did you get over it? How did your Hubs help with drying the tears? 

Categories: Love Stuff | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Tears of Joy

Well guys, the big one year anniversary officially came and went without a lot of hoopla or fanfare. I had expected lots of joyous, silly celebrating, but we had none of that.

And you know what? I’m perfectly fine with that.

Don’t get me wrong, we’re still going to celebrate again on Saturday in a combined celebration for my birthday and some other stuff.

We had some personal things that kept us from celebrating the way we would have preferred last night so we just decided to go out to a relaxing dinner, something fun and casual, and then save the real “special” stuff until the weekend.

(Although eating out on a Monday certainly is special on our budget!)

So on the one year anniversary of the day we got all dressed up and fancy and said our vows, we both went to work (or worked from the couch, in my case) and then some pretty awesome burgers that I tried to share with you via photo, but my phone internet isn’t cooperating so you’ll just have to take my word for it.

And then we went home.

We were full. We were tired. We decided to take a short nap before dessert.

Spoiler alert: We never made it to dessert.

We were both so tired that we ended up sleeping longer than we’d planned, and by the time we got up, we were still feeling full and weren’t in the mood for any more celebrating.

I’ll admit it, I was bummed.

I felt we’d wasted our anniversary. It was the only first anniversary we’ll get and we’d slept part of it away!

But then, as Hubs hugged me and I could see the hurt in his eyes because he thought he’d let me down, I realized it didn’t matter at all how or when we celebrated. Having each other for a whole year already and a lifetime to come is what we should be celebrating every day, not just today. That’s where the joy should be coming from. Not from a fancy dress or an expensive dinner…

So I cried a little bit and apologized. I hadn’t meant to make him feel bad. What a humbling blessing to be able to ask for forgiveness from the one I love on the day we celebrate the promises that we made to always fight fair and seek out resolution to our conflicts and struggles.

And then we settled into the couch to read our “Love Story” book that we started on our wedding day.

Putting the photos of our parents and grandparents on their wedding days into our love story book.

And we looked though our photo album. And we both got a little emotional as we relived those memories.

Such a special moment I never want to forget.

And then, you know what we did?

We read our promises to each other.

Wyatt reading his promises to me. I’m crying here. He is, too.

The ones we read during our wedding after we recited our vows. The ones that made pretty much the entire church cry, including ourselves, with how sweet and personal and perfect for us that they were.

My turn with this very emotional task of reading our personalized promises to each other.

And you know what?

We both cried again. More than a few tears on our cheeks. In fact, there were several, many even, tears running down our cheeks as we relived how passionate we were as we wrote and recited those words to each other last year and remembered just how much love and devotion and history and hope those words carried for us then, and how much they still mean to us know.

And you know what else?

It was exactly what I would have wanted our “actual” anniversary to be. It was real. It was honest. It was tender and sweet and private. We’ll save the silly celebrations for later. Those special moments were all about taking time to quietly reflect on just how amazingly blessed we are to call each other best friends…lovers… teammates… family…husband and wife.

And that was all the joy I could have ever dreamed of wanting for such a very special day.

 

Categories: Love Stuff | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

How we’re doing on “happily-ever-after:” The Anniversary Post

I can’t believe it.

Really, I can’t.

But it’s true.

Hubs and I have been married for a whole year.

Crazy, isn’t it?

I mean, considering the fact that we dated for 6 1/2 years before we got married, so much more has happened in the past 366 days. (It was a leap year, after all, so we got an extra day in our first year of marriage.)

Anyway, a year ago, we stood in front of friends and family and promised some really beautiful things to each other. They were promises we wrote specifically for the each other, in addition to the more traditional vows that our minister personalized for us.

I just read through them again, as I’ve done several times over the past year, and my eyes filled up with tears of overwhelming joy and humility as I realize how amazingly blessed we are to have found each other so young… how extraordinarily happy I am that I got to marry my best friend.

For some more wedding-related memories, read this post here and this other one here.

And for what I’d learned at the 6-month mark, read this one.

Last year, we promised to figure out our own way to happily-ever-after as we write our love story each day. Here’s how I think we’re doing and what we’ve learned:

1. Being together is so much better than being apart. After doing the distance thing for nearly our entire season of dating, we are so thankful that we are now committed to the “Where you go, I will go,” attitude toward marriage that we’ve chosen. Sure, there will be short periods of time when we have to be apart, and it will be awful, but we’re committed to making a decision together if ever there is a circumstance that would require longer-term time away. Maybe that would be a job change, or something, but if one of us goes, the other goes. No questions. We know that every relationship is different and that what’s right for us doesn’t make sense for everyone, but it’s something we decided before we were married and we continue to be passionate about this decision.

2. I struggle with housework because I’m still learning to balance my time as I work from home. Right now, I’m blogging while Hubs does the dishes. Yes, it’s our anniversary and we’re working towards getting ready to go out to celebrate tonight, but there’s still dishes that need to be done as we enter this busy week. Should I have done them already since I was home all day? Maybe. But did I skip my much-desired workout today because I was so busy with work stuff? Yes. It’s not that I don’t do anything house-related during the day (I did 2 loads of laundry), it’s just that I feel guilty when I come home and there’s so much messiness around me after being here all day. It’s something to work on for next year for sure.

3. Hubs is awesome at being handy. I’ve learned to trust his judgement about things like cars and house repairs. He’s also awesome at Excel and everything else job-related. I so respect him so much as he settles into work and provides for our family. Sure, I’m working, but as a freelancer, my pay is unsteady and usually weeks or months after I spend the time researching and writing. Not so great at helping pay the bills each month. It’s amazing to watch him become a man that I’m even more in love with every day.

4. Our families have been so supportive as we’re settling into marriage. We are constantly blessed by their help, advice, encouragement, and testimonies of what it means to make a marriage work over time. We are blessed with parents and grandparents who truly love one another and whose stories inspired us and shaped the way we view love. As a celebration of that, we made this video to be played before the start of our wedding. It’s just as special now, and I wanted to share it with all of you.

And finally, the biggest lesson or reflection I’ve had thinking back over our year together:

5. This is life. It isn’t something we’re going to ever “Get.” It’s not something we’ll ever fully learn to be good at. We’re going to mess up and lot, laugh a lot, and keep on waking up together every morning by opening our eyes to see the one we love.

Sure, we’re getting better at specific things like fighting fair and sharing the bed, but we’re still just going to have to keep working though every day, no matter how fun or frustrating it may be. We’re blessed to have been given this relationship to share our struggles and joys, and I’m blessed to share it with you. But no matter how hard I try, some days, or weeks, or months, there just isn’t going to be an major “lesson” or achievement in our relationship. Sometimes, life is more about making it together than what where we’re actually going.

However, I can tell you one thing about where we’re going. It’ll be our own little version of paradise, wherever and whatever that means, because we’ll be going there together.

Congratulations to all the newlyweds who read my blog. Whenever your day is, I hope you take some time to think about things you’ve learned or come to realize in your marriage so far. Maybe it’s a communication technique you’ve finally “mastered.” Maybe it’s something to work on for next year. Maybe it’s something you never realized about your hubs that you just adore. Tell me. I’d love to hear!

Categories: Love Stuff | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

How a broken radiator taught me to trust my husband more

Last week, my car overheated on the way to get the water switched over to our name at our new house. I told you guys all about it, so of course, because you are such loyal and awesome readers, that you remember ever tiny little detail about it. In case your mind is a little fuzzy on the details, or you missed it because you were vacationing somewhere fabulous and fancy, or just because the post was so awesome you want to go back and read it again, here it is.

A few days after all that took place, Hubs and I were driving around in my car because his car doesn’t have air conditioning and it’s 150-million degrees in Kansas City lately (No? Fine, but it’s hot!), it started to get a little hot again.

Why do we get so upset that our cars can’t keep cool in this heat. WE can’t keep cool in this heat!

When we got home, he checked the water levels and they were low again. That means I had a leak. Uh oh.

But he saw a tiny little line that looked like a crack on the radiator and so set to work finding out where to buy one and thinking about getting it replaced right away.

He tracked down the best deal for the fix: buying the radiator from an auto-store and putting it in himself, and set out to get started.

I balked.

Just a little, but it was enough to make him mad.

I wanted to KNOW that spending the money (unbudgeted, mind you, though we do have an emergency fund)  would fix the problem. We just bought a house. I don’t have a full time job. This is not the time to spend money we don’t have to. I needed some assurance that this money and effort (it seemed like an awful lot of work to put that radiator in ourselves!) would not all be for nothing when we found my car was still loosing water somewhere…

Hubs was angry.

He thought this meant I was arguing with him, doubting his wisdom on fixing the car, blocking him from trying to take action to fix a problem for me, for us, as soon as possible.

I didn’t mean to convey all that with my questions, but I guess I did. He didn’t mean to blow up and get so huffy so fast when all I was looking for was some additional reassurance, but it certainly resulted in a negative reaction from both of us as he stormed down the steps to go find some “proof” this “crack” was the culprit.

Oops. Good thing we forgive easily.

So after a few minutes of huffing and sulking and being salty with each other, we set to work. He filled up the radiator with water and squeezed some big hose for a few minutes until, yup, little water bubbles started foaming out of the tiny little line that did, in fact, turn out to be fairly significant crack in a super important part of the car, especially when it’s 100+ degrees outside.

So we bought the radiator and parked under a shade tree in our apartment’s parking lot. And then we worked all evening, about three hours or so, until we got it changed.

I’m allowed to honestly say “we” there because I helped, really.

I promise I did. You can ask him.

I held the light. I struggled to hold back hoses and stuff that were in his way. I even helped put in some little pin thing that holds the hose in place. I found and picked up stuff he dropped down into the mess of parts and stuff that make up the tangled, confusing mess under the hood of the car whenever the little pins were so small and springy that he could barely hold onto them while having to fight to work in the tiny space between the fan and the radiator to get things all hooked back up properly. I took out and put back in the air filter so he’d have about an inch more room to work….you get the idea.

And pretty soon this happened:

Hubs putting in the last bolt. We’re finally done!

We had successfully taken this out:

Yuck.

And put this in its place:

So shiny and new!

Time to relax and celebrate!

But it was after 9:00 and we hadn’t had dinner, we both needed a shower and we were hot and tired.

So we scrubbed the oil and grease and dirt and stuff off our hands and arms, warmed up some leftovers, and collapsed on our couch for the rest of the night. And by rest of the night, I mean about an hour before we dragged ourselves off to bed.

But in this crazy mess of an afternoon that was supposed to be relaxing (we’d scheduled some QT involving yummy food and FRIENDS on the couch that night), I learned an awesome lesson.

This man that I married never ceases to amaze me or give me more and more reasons to love and respect him. He knows so much about so much and is willing to work hard to do whatever he needs to provide for us. He’s smart and strong and sensible. He’s loving and patient and kind to me when I don’t deserve it.  He’s more than I ever imagined he could be when we danced that first dance together in the gym…when I was 15.

I’m nearly 23 now and you know what? I’m more than I ever imagined I could be, too. Funny how life does that to us, huh?

And I’m grateful to love a man I can trust with my heart, my life, my future babies…and my car.

So very thankful for these hands. And this man.

Categories: Lessons | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

What I learned from my Jimmy, who got too hot today.

Today I had to drive all the way down to Blue Springs to get the water switched to our name for the new house. Exciting, and also super frustrating since it takes all of five minutes for them to do it, and I had to drive an hour and 20 minutes round trip to do it.

Grr….

But the real issue today was the heat. Yes, it was hot outside. But it was also hot under the hood of my Jimmy. Really hot to be exact.

As in, the temperature gauge was hitting the red line and screaming “Red Line!!”  at me and I saw steam coming out from under my hood.

Ok, the gauge wasn’t screaming out loud, but I swear I heard that in my brain, so I’m sticking to that story.

Good thing I was being a half-way responsible driver and paying attention to such things, right? Well, by paying attention to such things, I mean immediately turning off the A/C and pulling over as soon as I got to a half-way close parking lot to where I was going. Not responsible as in I actually knew what to do when I saw the steam.

I didn’t know what to do at all.

So I freaked out a little bit.

Naturally.

Of course.

But only on the inside, I promise.

On the inside, I could feel myself shaking a little bit as the adrenaline sunk in of almost having to pull over on I70 when it was 90+ degrees outside.

Outside, I was cool as a cucumber as I pulled in the lot, parked, and shut off the engine immediately, grabbing my belongings and hopping out of the car as I started to dial my phone for help.

I wanted to call Hubs, but he was at work and doesn’t always answer right away since he’s often in a meeting or helping someone else on the computer and away from his phone.

So I wanted to call my dad but he was at work and doesn’t always answer right away since he’s a farmer and often has his hands full with cattle or corn or something.

Hmm…

So I took a chance and dialed my dad. I knew he was done with harvest and had been working around the shop yesterday so I bargained that he might be able to answer, and he did! It went like this.

“Hi, I have a problem.”

“…What?”

“My car overheated. I’m in Blue Springs and there’s smoke or steam coming out from under the hood.”

“Ok, where are you?”

“Blue Springs!”

“No, are you off the road?”

“Yes, I’m in a parking lot.”

“Ok.”

“I think it’s steam coming out of the hood, but I don’t know what to do. Pour water on it, open it, what?”

I think the conversation then calmed down some as I came to understand that my car wasn’t going to explode in a steamy fire or something. Ok. I’m not a mechanic, but I’m pretty sure I knew it wouldn’t do that. But it didn’t hurt to hear it from someone who REALLY knew it, you know what I mean?

I also called Hubs at work, and he answered right away, too! Hallelujah! And he agreed that we should get it checked before I tried to drive home. So I called AAA. (Thanks, mom and dad for paying for that!) and went on about the five minutes worth of business I had to do in City Hall. Then I set out to waiting for the tow truck guy to get there.

Spoiler alert: He was late.

In the meantime, I decided my phone was about to die and that would make this all that much more overwhelming and awful so I trotted back over the building I’d parked my steamy car behind and made my way to the first office I saw inside with someone in it. I knocked and a nice, older man answered. While I explained my situation and that my phone was dead, he offered me to use their phone. I said I’d actually really like to charge mine if he didn’t mind.

He didn’t mind.

So I plopped myself down in a chair and pulled out Wyatt’s charger I’d been using in the car and waited silently and awkwardly for about 10 minutes for my phone to fill up a little more on battery. Then I thanked the nice man and headed back outside to find some shade and keep waiting for the tow truck.

When he finally got there, he opened the hood and said this.

“You’re not low on water, at least not much. I can add some, but I’m not sure what that will do. There’s got to be something else wrong with it. You want me to tow it?”

No, sir, I don’t want you to tow it. I want you to tell me what’s wrong with it.

But I realize that isn’t really his job.

So I took his suggestion to drive to a little shop a few blocks away and have them look at it. On the very short trip there, Jimmy got super duper hot again. He was steamy and smelled awful. I felt awful. I was steaming, er, sweating, so I probably smelled awful, too.

The people at Fleming Auto Center were very busy. Dangit. But also very nice after I explained to the nice man at the counter that I could wait for them to work me in this afternoon, but I’m not sure what to do as I think (because my dad told me so) that I just need water in the radiator even though the tow truck guy who recommended I come here said I didn’t need any.

So he went out and looked for me. And instead of just looking at the little plastic reserve tank, which had plenty of water in in, he opened the radiator. Thank you! And said, “Wow, youare bone dry.”

So he added a gallon and a half of plain ol’ water, and my temperature gauge stopped screaming “Red Line!” “Red Line!” at me every time I nervously glanced over at it. Woo hoo!

And the nice man who carried 2 jugs of water out to my hot car on that hot afternoon didn’t charge me anything at all. He did say, “Keep an eye on it, now, and pull over to let it cool off if it gets much over 210.”

I didn’t tell him I was going to watch it like a hawk the entire way home and call my husband to come get me because I was tired of dealing with this on my own if it so much as climbed a line or two closer to that 210 halfway point to the red, screaming line.

I did thank him, and assure him they would be the first place we’d visit with car trouble once we move down to Blue Springs. And then I got the heck on the road home.

What did I learn?

1. It’s hot.

2. I should have worn my hair up today.

3. ALWAYS keep spare hair ties stashed everywhere. My purse, the cup holder in the car, the pocket of my shorts, the glove box, my wrist, Wyatt’s wrist, wyatt’s shorts’ pockets, the wrists and pockets of random strangers…what?

4. Trust my instincts. If something feels off. Pull over even if you’re almost there. If I’d waited an extra block to turn in, steam might have literally come billowing out from under my hood, drawing major attention and worse, hurting my engine.

5. Don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need it. Yes, I won’t become fast friends with every strange man I come in contact with, but today, I didn’t have the option to be overly cautious, shy, or embarrassed to speak up. Both nice strangers today didn’t have to help me, but I needed them to step up and do the right thing, which they did, and I’m so thankful they weren’t creepy or scary or rude to me.

6. Jimmy’s getting old. Put “buy a new car” on the top of our next major to-do list.

7. I can handle stuff like this. I made it all the way down to Blue Springs on I70, which I hate, and dealt with all this crazy, quite calmly, for the most part on my own. Then I made it all the way back home on I70, which I hate, keeping one eye locked on my temperature gauge the whole time, dealing with lunch hour traffic. I didn’t need someone to come save me because I was able to keep it together and just do what I needed to do. Maybe I’m growing up after all.

I mean, a girl can’t rely on her dad, husband, and AAA for everything, forever, right?

But I’m definitely thankful I can call them when I need them.

Categories: Adventures | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Friday’s Food for Thought: What the kids think…

It’s Friday and it’s summer, so I wanted to share some silly, happy thoughts with you guys today. You know the drill. Read it, and talk back to me!

On how to make love last…

“One of you should know how to write a check. Because, even if you have tons of love, there is still going to be a lot of bills.” -Ava, age 8  (SO TRUE, AVA, SO TRUE.)

“Don’t forget your wife’s name … That will mess up the love.” -Erin, age 8

“Be a good kisser. It might make your wife forget that you never take out the trash.” -Dave, age 8

On how to find the right person to marry…

“You got to find somebody who likes the same stuff. Like if you like sports, she should like it that you like sports, and she should keep the chips and dip coming.” Allan, age 10

“The person is thinking: Yeah, I really do love him. But I hope he showers at least once a day.” -Michelle, age 9 (WELL, OF COURSE WE HOPE THAT!)

On what to do after falling in love…

“Single is better… for the simple reason that I wouldn’t want to change diapers… Of course, if I did get married, I’d figure something out. I’d just phone my mother and have her come over for some coffee and diaper-changing.” Kirsten, age 10 (HOW ‘BOUT IT MOM? THINK THAT WOULD WORK?)

“You should never kiss a girl unless you have enough bucks to buy her a big ring and her own VCR, ’cause she’ll want to have videos of the wedding.” -Allan, 10

On why people fall in love…

“No one is sure why it happens, but I heard it has something to do with how you smell … That’s why perfume and deodorant are so popular.” -Mae, age 9

“I think you’re supposed to get shot with an arrow or something, but the rest of it isn’t supposed to be so painful.” -Manuel, age 8 (IF ONLY THAT WERE TRUE, RIGHT?)

“No person really decides before they grow up who they’re going to marry. God decides it all way before, and you got to find out later who you’re stuck with.” Kirsten, age 10 (AW, SO SWEET…I THINK.)

And the last one:

 

Note: I found most of these with a quick google search and some various pages that popped up there, so I have no idea who these children are and if they really said this stuff. Still, it’s cute, right?

Categories: Friday's Food for Thought | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Working girl blues

Well, as you guys know, I’m now working only from home every day. And I’m actually staying pretty busy, and making as much as I was during my internship days. (Still not as steady and secure as a “real” full time job, but I’m enjoying my time. Mostly. I’m certainly learning a bunch of things through this time though.

Here’s my list of the best and biggest lessons I’ve learned since going to work in our apartment.

1. People don’t think that I’m actually working. It’s not all that fun to explain that, yes, I’m actually working during the day so I can’t talk on Facebook, chat on the phone, or watch TV all day if I want to get anything done. Plus, I’ve learned that I often have to re-convince myself that I’m not unemployed right now. I’m self-employed.

2. Managing my time is harder now than ever before. I find myself feeling guilty if I don’t have time to clean the kitchen or fold and put away all the laundry while Hubs is away at work. Why? I wouldn’t feel bad about not doing those things if I was sitting at a desk at an office all day? I need to remember that working from home is just that…working.

3. It’s true that our surroundings influence our work. I’m often not inspired enough by the walls in our mostly plain apartment. Don’t get me wrong. I love it here, but I also think I do better work when my environment feels fresh. I spend way too much time in the living/dining room to have it feel very fresh and inspiring when I sit down to write.

4. Twitter, Facebook, and even email are time-sucking traps. I think you all know what I mean there, right?

5. I NEED a good desk and a good chair…like yesterday. I’m already noticing my neck and back feel tight and uncomfortable after a few minutes of working on my computer. I used to be able to sit for hours with my computer on my lap. Now, my head and eyes start to ache much sooner. Sitting on the couch may feel good on my tushie, but the rest of my body suffers. Ouch. At the same time, sitting on the hard, bar-height dining room table hurts my tush and hips, while my neck and shoulders feel more relaxed. Good grief!

What about you? Have you ever worked from home? How did you adjust? 

Categories: Lessons | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

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