I thought I was done with jello shots. I mean, I’m a little old for them, and I like to think that I’ve classed myself up a bit since my college days. But this was before I saw this:

And this:


And this:


Are you kidding me? Classy jello shots? Good thing I’m hosting a party soon, because I’ve got to give these babies a try.


I can see clearly now

When I was in high school, I got my eyes checked and discovered that I was basically blind in my right eye. (maybe when I went to get my driver's license? I don't remember.) However, my left eye was perfect. Since I only had the one bad eye, I got one contact and a pair of glasses (with just one treated lens.) I liked wearing acrylic nails, which made it difficult to insert and remove contact lenses. I didn't really like wearing glasses, so instead of bothering with good eyesight, I just let my left eye do all of the seeing. Eventually, it had overcompensated so much that I just didn't really see well at all.

I got another pair of glasses, but by this time, my prescriptions in both eyes were so different that the glasses gave me major headaches. So I didn't wear them. I just squinted whenever I needed to see anything far away.

My best good boyfriend, Larry, had Lasik like 15 years ago and LOVES it. My brother had it done, as did 2 co-workers, and they all LOVE it. They all say it is the best thing they ever did. I'm just terrified of it. I don't know why, but it just freaks me out. So when my eye doctor told me about Ortho K lenses, I was really interested. It does the same thing as Lasik without a scalpel or laser to the eye. It is a hard (gas permeable) contact lens that you only wear at night. It reshapes your cornea while you sleep. You take it out in the morning and you can see.

Well, I got mine on Tuesday. At first it is sooooooo uncomfortable. It feels like you have a piece of hard plastic in your eye. But the good news is that you don't put it in until right before bed. So it was uncomfortable, but once I close my eye it is fine. You have to keep them in and go see the doctor the morning after the first night you wear them so that she can check and make sure it is fitting correctly after a night of sleep. So at 8am on Wednesday, I went to get checked.

Long story short, on Tuesday, I had 20/400 vision in my right eye. On Wednesday, I had 20/20.



Things I don't get

1. Why is it always so hard to get out of bed on Sundays? Even when I don't stay out late, it is like my bed won't let me escape.

2. Why do people throw ginormous parties when their child turns 1 year old? We came home from church today to find a moon jump and a petting zoo in the neighbor's yard. Granted, I do not have a child, so maybe I will change my mind one of these days. But a moon jump and a petting zoo can't be cheap, and personally, I don't remember ANYTHING about turning 1.

3. Does it mean my parents loved me less since I never had a petting zoo at a birthday party?

4. Why is it so hard to put my shoes in the closet? All I would have to do is walk to the bedroom. Instead, there are 4 pairs kicked under the coffee table. (I will put them away tonight though. Four pairs is where I draw the line.)

5. Why do professors feel the need to require a $125 textbook when you're only going to need one chapter from it? You better believe that will be going on the course evaluation. I would understand if the professor had written it herself and wanted to sell a few copies, but she did not write this book and it is from 1998. I found a pdf recapping it on google scholar for free. Whatever.

6. How many different colors of khaki are there? What does a girl have to do to find some living room curtains? I can't find anything to go with the paint in the living room. I don't want white because I don't want them to get dingy.

7. Why are holiday decorations so addictive? Or to be more specific, why is it so hard to stay out of Hobby Lobby? (But if you're coming to my house for Thanksgiving, be sure to tell me how pretty everything looks. We're going with a "fall leaf" theme this year.)

8. Doesn't playing football hurt? All those giant guys tackling you? Being thrown onto the ground? Banging your head against the turf?

9. When did I become the type of person that goes way too long between pedicures? Who am I?

10. Instead of giving things to goodwill, should I start making boxes of "vintage" clothing? That way, when it comes back into style, I will be ahead of the game.

Of course, there are many other things I don't get, but that will be all for now.


the really long post where I talk about social justice

I was going to blog about really cute and/or funny things that I have browsed on the internet while I was supposed to be doing homework. But then I stumbled upon this blog called “A Story” and realized that instead of telling you about the Russian Doll measuring cups or Pick Your Nose party cups, I really wanted to share her words about Catholic social teaching. Based on her blog address, I think her name is Sarah, but I haven’t had a chance yet to stalk all of her old posts to find out. I will, don’t you worry about that. But for now, here is some of what this girl who I think is named Sarah says:

----beginning of Sarah’s words----

Faith needs action. Social teaching provides the structure for that action. It guides us along and holds our hands and tells us, "okay, little Susy, we need to be nice to Polly because being nice is nice. So nice!" No brainer type stuff that we should be able to figure out on our own but need swift kicks in the butt doing. Or at least little reminders.

What Catholic Social Teaching outlines:

-the Common Good
-the Life and Dignity of the Human Person
-a Preferential Option for the Poor (and Vulnerable)
-Stewardship & Care for Creation
-[the concept of] Subsidiarity

All great topics in and of themselves. All beautifully related. The Catholic Church takes a simple Christian stance: take care of God's creation, fools. (Or at least, that's how I hear it.)

1. The common good? Means that just because you are all set to go with a mansion and big screen and endless supply of oreo cookies does not mean all is well in the world. Even if you have a lazy boy, too, and a water slide directly to your pool. All is most definitely not good unless everyone is good. That means that sometimes, other peoples' needs come before your own. Like, maybe you could share your oreos or something.

2. The life and dignity of the human person. Most would probably read this and think: oh this refers to the Catholic view of abortion, BAM. Those Catholics! Always harping against abortion! But not necessarily. (I mean, yes, we do harp against abortion, but the concept is a lot more universal.) Dignity is for everyone. Everyone has these rights to the basic necessities. Food, water, shelter, and dignity. Of these, I think the most important is dignity. No one wants their failures or their shame slammed back in their faces. No one deserves it. It's our job to lift each other up to the point where everyone sees the good in themselves, and can then maybe pass the good along. Neat.

3. A preferential option for the poor... um, what? Yeah. It's kind of confusing. Basically it means that we should prefer the poor. Again, you might say, um, what? That sounds kind of weird. But the Jesus of the Gospel was notorious for spending his time with poor people. Sinners, even. omg! A better translation for "preferential option" (remember, this stuff is translated out of Latin) would be "preferred favor." Why should anyone prefer the poor? Not just because rich people are boring and stuffy, but because the poor have the most need. Think of a family who has a child with leukemia. A heart-wrenching situation in general. Maybe the parents are forced to spend a lot of time away from their other kids, caring for their sick child. They love their healthy kids a lot. But they are also forced, out of necessity, to maybe prefer or favor their sick baby. The love is the same for everyone, it's a matter of time and energy being spent in a way that benefits those with most need.

4. Stewardship and care for creation is such a great topic in this line of social thought. It gets my goat when Christians forget their belief that God gave humans care over the earth. If that's true (and even if it's not) doesn't that mean we should.... care for the earth and all its inhabitants? As in, not trash it? As in, love every little creature great and small? Environmentalism isn't real high on a lot of peoples' lists, but it is on mine and so I am glad such thought has gone into this subject of Catholic teaching.

5. Subsidiarity. Remember the saying, "give a man a fish and he eats for a day. Teach a man to fish and he is full for a lifetime." It is always, always preferable to let people do for themselves that which they actually can do for themselves. When I think about subsidiarity, I think back to the idea of dignity. Everyone deserves the chance to earn for themselves. To become better people and eventually stand on their own two feet. We have to be conscious of the ways we "help." For example, if I hand-fed my little brothers all their lives and never let them lift a finger on their own, when in fact they are capable of it. Am I helping them by depriving them of certain abilities? Not necessarily. Subsidiarity. It's a beautiful thing.

----end of Sarah’s words----

I think she did a great job at capturing why I love Catholicism. Don’t get me wrong – of course I am not saying that Catholics are the only people that do this. MWG is the spiritual head of our household and he has chosen a MegaChurch for us – one that does an amazing job at most of these concepts. But I guess the difference to me is that now it feels like people do them because it seems like we *should*…… whereas the examples I saw in the lives of Catholic families growing up were not like that. You didn’t help others because you *should*, you did it because it is just a part of you. We were just one big, giant, happy, community that helped anyone that came along. Even the weird, sick, old, smelly or undocumented people. We had an (actual) crazy lady living in a trailer in our backyard. We washed and reused our plastic silverware and ziploc baggies because why would you waste something that is still perfectly good? We had the Singles group over every Tuesday night for potluck dinner. If we had two (rundown) vehicles and somebody needed one, we gave one to them. (or sold it to them for $1 so that the title could be transferred.) I’ve realized that while it is beautiful to go to Africa or South America and help the poor, you don’t have to go that far to find people in need. In fact, they are just about everywhere you look.

One of my favorite quotes has always been one from St. Francis of Assisi – “Preach the gospel at all times. When necessary, use words.” It is my hope and prayer for myself that I can do a better job at this. (Even if it means I have to live without this parking citation notepad.)

(Go read more about Sarah at her blog. I want to make sure I give her credit because I couldn’t find an email address to write and ask her permission.)



I have a bad habit of buying a magazine when I’m standing in the checkout line. I don’t know how I lived before Real Simple. Love that magazine. Well, this evening I stopped into the store to grab a rotisserie chicken and grapes so that I could make some chicken salad. Lazy? Perhaps. But I wanted chicken salad and didn’t feel like cooking chicken. Plus, $5.99 for a whole cooked chicken isn’t that bad. I would spend at least that much on a package of chicken breasts. But I digress. I ended up doing some actual shopping, so I had to go to a real checkout line. I spotted a Real Simple that I hadn’t read, so I grabbed it. I was super excited, because I love the section that gives you new uses for everyday items and it appeared that this particular issue was full of them. Some of the ones I’ve tried (or wanted to try) from the past:

· - Wire hanger as ribbon holder (unroll the hanger and put the rolls of ribbon on, then put hanger back together)

· - Big smooth stones as bookends

· - Tissue box as plastic bag dispenser

· - Wine rack as magazine storage (roll them up and put them in the spots for the wine – so cute!)

· - Ketchup bottle as pancake dispenser ( I don’t make pancakes that often, but next time I do you better believe I am trying this! I think I will also try it for frosting one of these days. Oh – and not a real ketchup bottle… one of those red ones that come in a BBQ set.)

(I seriously jot them down as I read the magazines and keep all my little notes in a place where I can go back and read them.) So anyway, this magazine I picked up was titled 799 new uses for old things. I didn’t really pay any attention to it, just threw it on top of the toilet paper and checked out. The total price seemed a bit high, but I just swiped my debit card and went on my way. After dinner, (in an attempt to avoid doing homework,) I thought I’d look through a couple of pages of the magazine. It was then that I realized that the cover was thick and not the regular magazine style. I flipped it open and realized that this is more like a book! I also looked to see how much I paid for it…. $13.99! Oops. Oh well, I figure I’ll save money on all the household items I re-purpose. Don’t mind me. I’ll just be lighting hard to reach candle wicks with spaghetti noodles and placing paper plates in between china to prevent chips.


what would you like for lunch?

Did I ever tell you about the time my sister-in-law graduated? I don't think I did. Here she is in all her glory. (pictured with my brother and their son.)
Dejah (pronounced "Day-yuh") worked her toosh off to finish up her degree in San Antonio. While I'm not a good enough sister-in-law to go to the actual graduation ceremony (is graduation not the most boring event ever?), Larry and I did go down for a celebratory visit and lunch.

My parents made the trip for the special occasion (as did Dejah's parents), so we had a rather large group for lunch. You know how I know we aren't fancy? (and how I know Dejah is a perfect fit for our family?) Because while she could have insisted on somewhere "nice" for lunch (or even Outback or something), we all rounded up and headed over to "The House of Pizza/Four Cuisines."
Four Cuisines used to be a pizza place. (hence the "House of Pizza" name.) But then it added Chinese Food. And then it added traditional American Food. And then it added Greek Food. I dare you to go to the website and look at the menu. Basically, you can order absolutely ANYTHING you feel like. I had some chinese. My mom had a pizza. My dad had a burger. I can't remember what Larry had because it wasn't captured in the picture.
This place was hilarious. Next time you are in San Antonio, I suggest you try it.



I am really into "theme" gifts. When I'm a part of a gift exchange at Christmas, (like when you have to draw somebody's name) I like to put a bunch of assorted items together. For example:
- colander with pasta utensil, pasta sauce and pasta
- porcelain planter with garden gloves and little garden rake
- patio table tray with outdoor napkins, tablecloth and citronella candle
- ice bucket with small bottle of liquor and swizzle sticks
- basket with notecards, colored pens and stamps

You get the idea.

Well, imagine my surprise and delight when I got a birthday gift from Sarah. I really don't need presents - nobody really does, right? - but they sure are fun to get. Especially when they have a theme! The theme of this gift was "I didn't intentionally wait to buy your birthday present, but it is convenient that I did because since it is Breast Cancer Awareness month, I was able to get you lots of pink things that contributed to a good cause." This is a wonderful theme because:

a.) There are several lovely ladies in my life who have survived breast cancer (mom and Amy to name the ones closest to me)
b.) I like pink.
c.) Just wait until you see what it included.

First, it came in a pink reusable grocery bag. I love these bags. All of the items inside were wrapped in different shades of pink tissue paper:
- pink plastic tumblers
- pink koozies with the "We Can Do It" lady saying "We Can Cure It"
- t-shirt with pink ribbons on a tree
- Ghiradelli almond chocolate bar (in a pink box)
- Rubbermaid takalongs with pink lids
- pink Sharpies
- Orbitz gum in a pink container
- And my personal favorite... .pink ribbon chip clips

To top it off, the birthday card had wiener dogs on it, which I'm obviously a sucker for. I not only love my gift, I love that Sarah knew I would love it. You can't get just anyone disposable tupperware and pink markers, but I'm really the type of person that squealed in excitement as I opened them. So, THANKS!

***Thank you to all of my dear friends who thought of me with thoughts, cards and gifts on my birthday. I love you all and hopefully I didn't hurt your feelings by not dedicating an entire post to you.



This is supposed to be "Ten Things on Tuesday," but I only did 9 and it is Friday, so whatever.

1. When you were a senior in high school, what career did you think you’d choose? Did you? Why or why not?
I got my first “real” job during spring break of my senior year, waitressing at Chelsea Street Pub and Grill in the mall. (Friday and Saturday nights and Sunday days) Seeing as how I loved it and made great friends and found a boyfriend, I decided that I wanted to go into the service industry and majored in Restaurant/Hotel Management. After a year I realized that while I loved being a cocktail waitress to pay my way through college, I did not want to do it for the rest of my life. Therefore I went back to “Plan A” and got my teaching certificate.

2. What one thing about the “real world” did you find most surprising once you were on your own?
Money does not, in fact, grow on trees and dishes do not do themselves.

3. Name 3 things you think your closest friends DON’T like about you.
I hate talking on the phone, I like to use coupons everywhere I go and I talk an awful lot about my dog.

4. In order to sleep, do you need background noise or absolute quiet?
I prefer background noise. Like a fan. Or the ocean.

5. Why do you choose to reside in your current city?
Well, aside from my job and my Larry being here, I just really like it. I’m happy that I ended up here. But then again, I just like to be happy and I’m sure I could be happy even in Portales NM or something.

6. Are you close to your parents?
I would say that I get closer to them every year. Growing older has made me realize how blessed I am and I don’t want to take any time for granted.

7. What is your favorite fiction book? Poem? Blog?
Sometimes I feel like this question is just included in surveys so that whoever wrote the survey can feel all cultured and fancy and give answers like “I don’t read fiction books.” Well, guess what? I’m not that kind of person. I judge my favorite books based on how many times I can read it over and over again at the swimming pool. Therefore, my favorite piece of fiction would have to be either Bitter is the New Black or Good in Bed. My favorite poem is not EE Cummings or Shakespeare, it is probably “Love” by Roy Croft. Finally, I can’t say that I have a favorite blog at the moment. I mostly just skim. Stupid grad school.

8. Do you enjoy cooking or is it a chore?
I enjoy it but only when I really have time for it. When I feel rushed, it feels more like a chore. Same with baking.

9. Be honest. What one thing would (the majority of) your blog readers be shocked to find out about you?
I’ve never seen an episode of Jersey Shore.