Random Crap: High Summer

Something clicked in me very recently and I finally feel like an adult. You’d think with all the flaming crap I’ve been through in the last five years it would have kicked back around seven bends ago, but no- not until now. What did it? Showing a guy looking at my Suburban where to check the oil and how to put the snow-cables on. I know. Weird.

Little House is clean! I’ve spent the whole first week of summer vacation (thank you sucky weather!) cleaning and clearing. It feels so good to have the kids’ rooms all sorted and spiffy, and to know where everything is. My stuff too. Took a big pile to Union Gospel Mission to donate, as I keep shrinking. Not complaining.

Jeffrey found my old tattered copy of Watership Down and is already four chapters into it. I’m tickled and a little sentimental.

One of the coolest side effects of no long being is a constant state of histamine overload from gluten is that things that used to make me loopy no longer do. Scents used to make my airway close up and I couldn’t breathe- now? No problem. For the first time in my life, I’m enjoying scented soap, dryer sheets, and even- gasp!- perfumes! I’m in love with Philosophy, and my two favorites are Amazing Grace and Field of Flowers. Previously the only perfume I could wear was Clinique Happy- which I still love.

Speaking of things that smell good- Mrs Meyers soaps in Lemon Verbena. Oh. My. Stars. I would lay in a pool of the stuff if I could. Mercifully, my ex-MIL likes it too, and she brings me some. I’m grateful. It almost makes doing the dishes fun. Almost.

Abby has moved from picture books to actually reading chapter books. Yeah, I know. Dude. I caught her with “How to Train Your Dragon” the other day. SHE’S FIVE! Girl is gonna outstripe her mama in no time flat… I’ll be cheering her the whole way.

I finished a painting this week that had been haunting me for longer than I care to admit. It’s such a relief to be done with it- and be done in a way that I’m satisfied with. It’s been a powerful lesson for me- painting pictures of people’s pet’s that have passed on is insanely difficult, and I don’t plan on doing it again.

I have some really super neighbors. One of them has an ASD kid Bean’s age, and it’s so fun to go there to play. I don’t have to worry about explaining things, and she’s just sweet and easy to be around. Our kids ignore each other beautifully and be weird all afternoon, and it’s awesome.

Someone mowed my backyard this week, and it took me all week to figure out who. All the usual suspects were ruled out, and it turned out to be my X’s uncle who came over and knocked down the jungle. What a nice surprise.

I was supposed to go to a writers retreat this coming weekend in the hills outside of Salt Lake City, but life has just not worked out for that to be possible. Sad I’m gonna miss seeing so many friends, but I know something else will open up.

Craving baklava lately something fierce. I don’t think gluten-free philo exists, alas. Perhaps I’ll make a pan of the golden manna from heaven and deal it out to all the people who love me and the kids so much. It’s kinda the least I can do.

Ran into my old yoga instructor in Fred Meyer today and had forgotten how much I love her. Maybe its time I got my butt to a class again- I could use some core work and some increased flexibility. You never know when that might come in handy!

I’m liking this whole free time thing. I mean, I have a laundry list a mile long that I need to start on this summer, but it’s a whole different animal than having assignments due all week long. I have to take the Praxis test and the GRE. Anyone have any experience with those? I have until Sept 1 to get everything done, but looking at the calender, it’s gonna go fast, I can tell already.

Congratulations to my friends Ray and Michelle- they are in Seattle this weekend picking up their missionary son as he completes two years of good service.

71 days until school starts… not that I’m counting.

14 thoughts on “Random Crap: High Summer

  1. Other than you not coming to Utah, that’s a lovely laundry list of positivity. I like that. But Annie and I are both itching to see you. If you don’t make it down here soon we are going to have to take a very long roadtrip in a van full of small screaming people. Intense proposition.

    • I’m coming, Em! It just won’t be this weekend. But I will be there this summer, at least once, and you and Annie are at the top of my list of people to see. I’m speaking at Sunstone the first week of August for certain, and I might have something else, too- we shall see.

  2. I took the GRE. Best thing I ever did was pay for the online course (self led, not instructor led). My problem was I didn’t think like the GRE and needed to learn how to pare down answers and time myself through them. Score in the 93 percentile. I wanted to take it again and prove I could do better until my school guidance counselor talked me out of it. It got me into grad school so mission accomplished. You can also get GRE practice books (which come with an online practice test) at B&N.

  3. I’m so happy you can now enjoy perfume. Last year for my birthday I got Clinique Happy in Bloom and have really loved it. Also, I picked up that same lemon verbena dish soap just the other day. I must agree, it is simply lovely and makes dishes much more tolerable. I love a good cleaning purge. It feels so good!

  4. GRE: take a billion practice tests. Until you can’t handle any more. I’m a great standardized test taker and almost didn’t bother to put in time prepping. That would have been a huge mistake. I didn’t pay for any Prep courses, just took GRE prep books from the library and did each and every practice test I could find. I went in so prepared and did well.
    Not that I have anything to show for it as I ended up not going to the programs that accepted me :)

    Kinda random but I was wondering if you’ve tried your Organix keratin 30 day treatment yet? Thanks for the rec on the shampoo and conditioner, as far as I can tell my hair type is a LOT like yours, and I’ve been loving these ever since you suggested. I have been hesitant to try the 30 day deal though.

    • Yeah, skip the 30-day deal. I did it and really didn’t like it. It was a mess, took forever, and the results were nothing worth doing it again for. I will stick with the shampoo and conditioner, and the silicone shine/breakage serum though- I love them!

      Thanks for the advice on the GRE!

  5. I taught GRE prep courses through Kaplan, so if you want any help, give me a shout.

    My advice would be to get either Kaplan or Princeton Review, but just the book with the online tests/question banks. You’re really disciplined, so you don’t need an instructor nagging at you. The verbal section is mostly vocabulary (about 3/4 of the points), and there will be a list of words. Make flashcards. The math is the same as the SAT; learn the shortcuts, and you’ll have no problem. The real issue is time, and the more you practice, the less of an issue that will be.

    The other thing to find out is how much the GRE matters for your program, and which sections. Some programs require it, but it doesn’t really matter that much. If that’s the case for you, then don’t stress too much!

  6. forgot to mention that dictionary.com has GRE vocab prep quizzes online that will keep tabs on what you practice. i was surprised how many of those words came up on my GRE. It was nice to turn it on and do a quick 10-20 min. review when I had the chance.

  7. And if you need lodging to break up the trip, Boise is halfway to Utah. Casa Scarehaircare has a cute bedroom, neighborhood pool, good food, and you know Sunny in my neighborhood.

  8. Many years ago, I drove across the world from New Jersey to Utah and back with my friend and her 5 children. We arrived at home at 3:00 a.m. and I had to take the Praxis the next morning at 7:00 a.m. I passed with no difficulty. That should give you some idea as to how hard it is. :)

  9. Mrs Meyer Lemon Verbena is about my most favoritest thing in the entire world. I bought a jug of it on impulse at Marshall’s months ago and have been rationing it out ever since. I may have to pony up some cash and pay full price at the $$ grocery store soon since I doubt I’ll ever find it at Marshall’s again. And it’s almost gone.

    Good luck with everything you have to do this summer!

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