Thursday, December 9, 2010

35 and counting

Well, today is my 35th birthday.
To celebrate I am took an exam in my psychology class. Got a B on the test and ended up with an A for the course. I had perfect attendance so I do not have to take the final. (yea!)
I am now studying (can't you tell?) for my anatomy and physiology exams. I have 2 of them today. One is a lab test and one is a lecture test. As of right now I have a B in the course and it is the only class keeping me from a 4.0 for the semester. If I don't get it, I won't be heart broken, as long as I maintain my B I will be extremely happy.

In Illinois you have to renew your driver's license every 4 years, this year I had to take the written exams for both my motorcycle and regular license, I passed both with flying colors, so you guys can stop screaming and running when I come driving down your sidewalks, and the picture is the best driver's license/i.d. card picture I have ever taken.

Well, that's about all for now.
Talk to everyone later.

Thursday, December 2, 2010


Well, today is the second day of December 2010. I have less than two weeks of classes for my third semester of college. Tomorrow I go and pick up the payment voucher for my fourth semester. Next month I will have been in college for a full year. Right now I am one class shy of all my prerequisites for the respiratory therapy program. The good news is I am number three on the wait list which means as soon as registration reopens after payment due day I have to get my butt in gear and register. I also have to get my butt in gear and fill out the application for the program.

A few milestones... yesterday, December 1st was Lyndi's second birthday. Next Wednesday the eighth is my parents 37th wedding anniversary and the day after will be my 35th birthday.

On December 11th I will be playing in my second bout as a Rockford Rage skater, I will be playing in the debut bout of the Rag Dolls. I am super excited.

That's all for now.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010


Today is election day 2010, a day when our publicly elected officials will find out if they have a job next year. I know this is going to sound really spiteful, and I do not blame any one politician or political group, but how does it feel, not knowing if you will have a job in the near future? For those that do not win re-election, now you truly will know how a great many of your constitutes feel.

But I digress, what I really wanted to know is, when was election day termed a holiday? I had to stop by the unemployment office today to drop off some paper work and when I arrived there was a large note taped to the door. "IDES Offices will be closed today 11/2/10 because of election day."
REALLY? luckily the paperwork I needed to drop off simply goes in a mail slot and I don't have to actually hand it to someone.

Thursday, October 28, 2010


This semester has been filled with sitting, I wake up and sit in my jeep on the drive to class. I sit in class for 50 minutes to 165 minutes. I sit between classes for 6 hours, trying to study but mostly playing games or stalking my friends on facebook. Then I get back into my jeep and sit as I drive home.

Today I'm sitting in a car dealership between classes waiting for a new radiator to be installed.

I think I need to get moving, but I feel like even though I am spending a lot of time sitting, not going anywhere, I am never home and constantly on the move.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Second thoughts

I have been having second thoughts lately. I guess I will eventually have to make a decision. It sucks, but I have to do something. I do not like where I am right now. We will see what happens in the next 2 months.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010


Another weekend has come and gone. I tried very hard to be lazy, but failed miserably. On Saturday I studied went grocery shopping and spent the afternoon making chili for Jake's work potluck. I wanted my chili to be somewhat healthy so along with regular chili beans (not kidneys, blech) I added garbanzo beans, hominy, and for color carrots. I thought it looked good and it tasted even better.

Apparently I was the only one who thought so. Hardly anyone ate it because of the carrots. Those that did said it was good, sweet with a kick that snuck up on you. One person even told me I should have served it over egg noodles because it was more like a stew than a chili. Oh-well.

Sunday I got up early and drove to Batavia, IL. I joined 3 of my new teammates as we helped a local ABATE chapter with their annual toy and food run. Toy runs are one thing I miss from Yuma, but they are not the same here. There is no tri-tip, they have burgers and brats instead. *shakes head* what are they thinking? Toy Runs should have either tri-tip or chorrizo and egg breakfasts, duh....

Oh well, it was a good time anyway, and the weather, beautiful, it was in the 80s all weekend, I drove around with the top down. I should have left the skates at home and taken the bike, maybe next year.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Making memories

I don't know if I said it here or not, but one of my fondest memories from childhood was my family's trips to the apple orchard. I know we didn't go every year, but all the pick your own places we went to were so much fun. We would pick peaches, blueberries, cherries, and of course apples.

Well since we have moved to Illinois we have been going to a local apple orchard every year. We have yet to pick our own apples. (insert pouty face here) we always have a good time though. This past weekend we took our friends from the Quad Cities and their kids to the orchard. (Note to self, NEVER go on a weekend!!) Usually when we go we drive up before 10 in the morning during the week, they are relatively slow and have taste testers for all the dips and mixes that they sell. There is hardly ever a line and you can just relax, take your time, and taste everything. Well on the weekend there are no samples, huge lines, and unbelievable crowds.

We started in the store, hoping for samples because we were hungry and the line for the cider doughnuts downstairs was long. Ha, were we in for a shock when we got inside and there were none. I figured it was because they wouldn't be able to keep up with the crowds, which makes sense. So we went in and found the line for the fresh doughnuts by the dozen, about 10 minutes in line for warm apple cider doughnuts, while Jake and friends held our place in line I took one of the kids and snuck over to where they had the apple tasting, where you could sample the apples before you decided what to buy. We brought a slice back to tide us over until we got our doughnuts.

12 doughnuts and 6 people didn't last too long so we chose our apples and stood in line to check out...ah yes, more lines. This line wound through the store. They were counting people leaving the store so they would know how many to let in the store at the entrance. It was that crazy.

Once we got outside it was better, the kids could run and play in the farm area, they even had a maze of fencing up for the kids to get lost in. We climbed over tractors, a boat, a train, and even in a small house. Once we ran off some steam and had a caramel apple and warm apple cider we went on a wagon ride through the orchard.

It was windy and cold, but it was a great time. We ended our time at the orchard by picking our own pumpkins.
Next year, we are going to take the kids out of school on a Friday when we go, that way we can have the full adventure.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Depression hurts

Wow, intense title huh? the sad part is I am feeling really depressed today. It is a beautiful sunny day and all I can do is try not to cry. I don't know why. I am doing good in school, but it feels like that is the only thing I have going for me right now.

I still enjoy roller derby, but I just can't keep up with my with my new team. I feel like I am letting everyone down.

I feel like I am letting Jake down, this past spring my unemployment got cut in half, yes we got the settlement from my accident, but we used it to pay bills and replace my car that was falling apart, and the bike I lost. Now that money is gone and we are back to living paycheck to paycheck.

I just feel like I am less than I was when I was working. I feel like I am no longer productive. I feel like I am a shallow shell of a person.

Why is it I can read about what others are doing, feeling, seeing, or interpreting in the events and happenings in their life and only wish I could see the same things. I have a friend who is so intuitive that she can see her life's story in songs. She can feel the emotions that the artist was feeling at the time. When I hear a song, I hear the words. The music is nice, but it's the words that I focus on.

Others can see deep meaning in a photograph or painting. What do I see? I see what the picture or painting is, a house, a tree, or a landscape. I can not see what the artist felt. I don't understand what they are trying to convey, other than it's an eye appealing picture.

And this makes me sad. I want so much to see the beauty around me, I want to feel like I can appreciate everyone I love. I want my friends and family to be proud of me because of what I do, not just because they have to or because it is socially acceptable. I am going to school and everyone is so proud of me, but why? There is no sense of accomplishment for me. In order to get a decent job, I have to go to school. I don't know, I guess the bare bones of this rant is I just feel so useless right now.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010


This is my favorite time of year. I love the cooler weather, the colors of the leaves are changing, and the apple orchard is open. I can't wait. One of my fondest memories as a child is going to the apple orchard with my family. We would go and pick our own have fresh apple cider and just have a great time outside. Well we have been lucky to find a really nice place close to us and Jake and I go every year with his mom and Bob. We go and wander around the store tasting dip samples eating apple cider doughnuts, drinking hot apple cider. Then we go to the barrels and pick up a couple of bags of apples. Not exactly the way I remember it, but it works. This year though I have conspired to bring back at least a little of that memory and hopefully I can create a new one for our god-children. In a couple of weeks our friends from the Quad Cities will be making a day trip up and we are going to take them to the orchard. We are going to pet goats, taste dip samples, eat apple cider doughnuts, pick a pumpkin or two and hopefully, just maybe, we will take a trip into the trees themselves and bring home a few apples of our choosing.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Plans bare fruit part 2

My trip started out getting on a bus in Rockford. Typical bus ride, nothing too exciting, except, this time I was flying solo. This is the first time I have taken public transportation without anyone else around. I arrived at the airport, made it through security and to my designated terminal without any help. no one held my hand and I made it safe and sound.

While sitting there waiting for the plane to arrive I saw a familiar face, though at first I couldn't place him. He was tall and lean and had very unique facial features. After I stewed for a while I finally figured out who he was, Randy Johnson. That was my celebrity sighting for the trip, and yes he got on the same flight I was on to Phoenix.

I landed in Phoenix safely then caught a puddle jumper to Yuma. The flight was uneventful, except they stuck the one person on the plane who got motion sickness right next to me. I spent the part of the flight over telegraph pass and landing trying not to hear her gagging. I have a sympathetic gag reflex and if she would have barfed, so would have I.

Once we landed I got my luggage and walked across the street to wait for my rental car. (Hint, if you want to rent a car with out paying the airport taxes, walk across the street to a gas station, or fast food joint and have the car company pick you up there.) Once I had my car I headed for mom and dad's.

From there it was a whirl wind tour of the southern part of the state, I went from Yuma to Mesa to Tucson, back to Yuma, back to Mesa, down to Tempe, then Back to Yuma. Saturday found us at the newest casino in the Yuma area. It all happened so fast and there was so much driving, it is one big sandy blur.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Plans bare fruit part 1

Well I have told you that I had plans in the works. My plans were simple, yet long overdue. I planned a surprise trip to Arizona. I wanted to keep it a secret from friends and family alike, but as always happens, not everything falls into place. I had to tell my mother I was coming. Then she spilled the beans to my sister in-law. Oh well. It was still a good trip, and I hope I surprised my dad for his birthday.

I also had wanted to make a surprise trip to Tucson to cheer up a friend who left Illinois a few months ago. I texted her and asked her when would be a good time to call her on the Wednesday I would be in AZ. Only she didn't know I was going to be in AZ. She gave me a time and I made the plans, tentative on when my newest niece would make her grand entrance into the world. Needless to say I couldn't just show up, she wanted to get some labs done after class and asked if I could call her later in the evening. so I had to break the news. She was so excited to see me, and I her. I missed her friendly and supportive face.

I didn't really have time to visit everyone I wanted to, or everyone that mattered. But I did make the most important visit of all. I got to see the two most important girls in my family's life. Lyndi and her sister Adyson.

It's a gray day

Last week we opened up the house. The humidity went away, the temperature dropped to the mid 70s during the day and the low 50s at night. It was a beautiful week. Friday the humidity and heat came back. Only it wasn't so bad.

The soybeans are starting to turn yellow. The corn cobs are starting to droop while their stalks turn brown. The buckeye trees down the road are starting to loose their leaves. It's a gray day today, but fall is in the air. I am hoping for a strong thunderstorm with lots of lightning tonight. It's a gray day today, but the apple orchard opened this past weekend and everything is going to be alright.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

First week of school

As I begin my 3rd semester at Rock Valley, I read about friends and family sending their kids off to school, and I think, hey, that's me putting on my backpack and walking out the door.

I have a full schedule this semester. I have a Career planning class, a Psychology class, an Anatomy and Physiology class, and lastly a Biology of Human Disease class. When I look at that list I can't help but think, "what was I thinking?!?" this is going to be a very tough semester for me. I am going to have a lot of reading to do in at least 2 of the classes. My human disease class not so much. The Teacher doesn't like the book we have for the class and won't be following it, however the material in the book will be helpful to study with.

So far the only class that is scaring me is the A&P. I'm not to sure about how I feel about the teach, on a side note, both my A&P and human disease teachers are younger than me.

Ok, enough fiddle farting around here, I have to go read a few chapters.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Summer Break

Ahhh, it's August and I have 19 days until school starts again. I plan on doing as little as possible, I mowed the yard on Sunday. Today is Wednesday and you can't tell I touched it. I have gone from 5 loads of dirty laundry to one in the dryer, one put away and 3 laundry baskets of clean clothes. All the junk mail that was on the living room floor has been picked up and thrown away, now I just need to take all the cardboard to the recycling dumpster. So much for doing as little as possible.

Well I got my official grades yesterday. I ended up getting an A in chemistry instead of the B I thought I was getting so I was extremely surprised. My GPA for 2 semesters is an average 3.667! I was so afraid I did so bad this semester that A really made me feel better.

Monday, August 2, 2010

So where are they now...

Hello friends and family,
I have just finished my second semester of school. My first semester I did really well. I was a few credits shy of being full time and I had an A in 2 classes and a B in the third.

This semester I had 3 classes, and was a full time student. I liked my Chem class, but did lousy on the tests. Luckily the homework and lab work made up for that and I came out of the class with a B. I had an A in another class and unfortunately I had a really hard time in my Algebra II class. The teacher expected us to know everything he taught already. During one class he used an equation from geometry and I asked him, "How were we supposed to know this if we have never taken geometry?" His answer, "Well, I guess you are outta luck then." yeah, hated this class. I luckily passed with a C so I don't have to re-take it, but it brought my average down. To get into my Respiratory program I need to have a high average in order to compete for the open seats.

I am already registered for a full course load for the Fall. I have 3 weeks before classes start on the 23rd of Aug. It is going to be a heavy load, but hopefully I can do it. I am interested in the classes so that should make it easier.

The way I dealt with frustration last year became the source of frustration this year. I left my roller derby team this past June. I have now been off skates for over 2 months and I hate it. I thought that the reason I left the team had been taken care of, unfortunately, it wasn't. Shortly after I left the team I was approached by several friends from other leagues, one even joked about when were we going to move so we could join them.

After weeks of beating myself up for even thinking about what I considered a traitorous act I made a decision. I realized that what I had been considering my team no longer was my team. Sure I had friends and girls I considered family on the league, but they were and are no longer a team. So, I am going to be stepping up my game, even though I really don't care about the competitiveness of the sport, I still want to play. I am going to be attending practices and skating with the closest WFTDA league.

More to come in the near future, I promise, the next post won't be too far behind. I said it before I have plans in the works, multiple plans, this is only one...stay tuned for the fruits of my labors.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Just treading water

I was discouraged, I was brought low. I have been accused of hurtful things. My name has been drug through the mud.

I have been lifted, honored, and supported.

There will be a 90 day waiting period to see if there are any changes. If there are, I can return, if the change does not happen, I will follow a different fork in my path.

Thank you to all who have supported me, knowing you love me and are behind me means much. Thank you to those who have honored me with offers of acceptance. You are are the ones who are keeping my head above water while I swim through the rapids.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Small but forgotten facts and 1 huge reason

In 2007 I joined a roller derby team...Fact

In 2008 a few skaters left, some due to relocation, others due to the actions and accusations of a single skater...Fact (ask the skaters who left.)

In 2009 more skaters left, again due to relocation and the actions, and accusations of the same skater who caused the discord the previous year.

Now it is 2010 and I am leaving the team. It was my turn to be targeted by this skater. I have been accused of intentionally trying to hurt my teammates on the track.
I have been lied to about quite a few things. When I confronted the person who lied to me along with the people she named as sources, or people she told the lie to, I was told I was a bully who needed an audience to perform in front of.
I was told that the only reason no one else would tell me they thought I tried to hurt someone on the track is because they were afraid I would try and hurt them next.

Even after the accusations were thrown at me I continued to skate, to skate my heart out, but I was not having fun any more. How can you have fun when with every hit you deliver, every hip check that sends someone off their skates you have to see someone shaking their head and muttering under their breath. Who else is she telling these lies to? Who else is she lying about because they pose some imagined threat to her?

How can I skate with someone who does not trust me? How can I skate with someone who thinks I am going to intentionally hurt her? How can I skate with someone who is telling my teammates that the only reason I am leaving is because I am against her and that I do not want to see her or the league succeed?

The joke of it is, if I truly wanted to see her or the league fail, I would stay and point out every lie, every wrong action. I however can not do that. At the start of the season the team did not have enough money in the bank to hold a home bout. I made the decision that what the team needed and still needs is someone who lives close, someone who can approach sponsors, and someone who has raised large amounts of money for the team. That person is not and was not me. I live over an hour from where we play so I could not make the rounds. I am a good teacher, a good skater, and a good player, but what good is being able to teach others if we do not have the place to teach or play.

So contrary to what this skater said recently, she IS the reason I am leaving. There are other smaller reasons as well, but the biggest influence in my decision to leave the sport that has taken over my life for the past three years is one paranoid person who can not seem to see past herself.

Monday, May 10, 2010

May 8th

May 8th is a day that will be forever be marked by the scars on my face, hand and thigh. One year ago this past weekend I was on my way to Beloit on my motorcycle when an older gentleman pulled out in front of me. I was lucky. Because I saw the accident coming I was able to slow down enough to be able to walk away. I was one of the lucky ones that weekend.

May 8th 2009, Mother's Day weekend 2009, there were 4 motorcycle accidents. only 2 of us lived to tell our stories.
April 8th 2010, 11 months to the day I buy a new bike. One more step in the healing process. My body is mostly healed, I will never be 100% but unless you knew, you would not guess that I had been in an accident. The hardest step of the healing process however is mental. Many people who are involved in a motorcycle accident do not ride again. The most common question I was asked after the fact was "Are you gonna ride again." To which I always answered, Yes. Deep in my subconscious however was a needle of doubt. I buried that needle when I bought my bike. I rode it home in the snow. I have taken 2 rides with friends, I have ridden to school twice. None of these short trips, however compare to this past weekend.May 8th, 2010. One year later. Jake has to work, but I need to continue to heal. I need to be on my bike. A friend and I take off around 7:45am and head south. We rode to Davenport to help support an injured Marine. It was a good day, but it was also a scary day.

The first stop was at the Greenville/Colona American Legion. We had been at the hall for about 20 minutes, standing outside in the parking lot just chatting. A group of bikes were coming down the road a block away, and started to make the turn to come our direction. I saw the lead bikes then heard the squealing tires. It happend so fast, yet in slow motion. I watched helplessly as a red bike tipped over spilling the rider. I watched him hit the ground and roll. When he came to a stop he didn't move. Some of us ran to the intersection while others went inside telling the people in the bar to dial 911.

As I went towards the intersection, I felt sick to my stomach, not today, why today. Then the shakes started as I relived my own accident.

After the cops and ambulance arrived we found out that everyone was fine. The rider who went down limped away, got on his bike and finished the run.

I did the same. I got on my bike and finished my run. I put over 250 miles on my bike. I am still not completely recovered. Even just driving down the road in a car, truck, jeep, and especially a motorcycle, if I come to an intersection where another vehicle is supposed to come to a stop, I cringe, I hesitate. Are they going to stop this time? Each time they do stop, but that doesn't stop my heart from jumping every time.

I will heal. I will not give up. I am stronger than that truck.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Who moved my cheese

Or was the title of the book, Someone moved my cheese. I really don't recall. All I know is it was on the recommended reading list from a former employer. When all was said and read, the story boiled down to change. Even if it is not what you want you must be ready for change.

After 3 wonderful years I am making a major change in my life. I, sadly, am leaving roller derby. My heart is breaking just thinking about it. I have grown so much because of this sport. Three years ago my life was spent going to work and coming home, half of the time Jake was here, the other half he was at work. My days melted into one another, the sides of the rut I was in stretched above my head for what seemed like an eternity.

Roller derby was the ramp to the light. I rearranged my work schedule so I could learn this sport, so I could make friends that had nothing to do with my husband or work. Within a year it consumed me. I was having a blast and taking names. Heck, I even gave myself a new one.

The team is in it's third season now, only four of the girls are still there from when I started back in 2007. I have seen so many women leave, some relocated, others just left. Now it is my turn to step away. My life is now turning toward a new direction. I need to focus on school, finding a new source of income, and finding a place where I do not feel the need to explain myself, or defend myself.

I wish I was the type of person who didn't care what others thought of me. I wish I was strong enough to let the hurt run off my back like water on a duck. I'm not. And so I will be the smart mouse who has her sneakers tied and draped over her shoulders. I will be the bigger person and embrace the change. I will move on with my life and leave. Know this though, when the cheese disappears, or becomes moldy, I will have found a new plate to dine from.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Not quite a year

11 months to the day after my accident, I was able to pay for the replacement for my bike. I was lucky enough to find a very reasonably priced Heritage Softail.

I am very proud to say I have ridden my new bike 3 times, including through the intersection where I had my collision. With the floor boards I am a little iffy on the corners I have already drug the left side once, but I am slowly getting used to the wider set up of my new wheels.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Just an FYI

Many of you might wonder what is going on with my blog. Well under some advice from a friend I removed all of my blogs that mentioned my motorcycle accident because we were going through negotiations with the insurance company of the gentleman who hit me. Well everything has been finalized and so now I feel I can put everything back up. Soon I will be adding a post with pictures of my new bike. Jake and I put a down payment on a 1996 Heritage Softail on 4/2/10 and we will be picking it up on Thursday!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

This and That

As of today, March 23 2010 I have been married for 14 years. It doesn't seem like it though.

Today was my third algebra class and so far it is going pretty good. I have turned in all my homework assignments ahead of time, it is really strange. I have to do my homework on a website.

I had a quiz in biology last night and was very proud of myself. I got a 100%. Tonight I have my weekly quiz in medical terminology, this class is kicking my butt. Up until last week I was doing real good getting low A's on the quizzes, and a B on the midterm. Last week I bombed my quiz with a D. It is just really frustrating the class is nothing but memorization, but not having a means to use it is what is killing me.

We signed the paper work for my accident and sent it back to the lawyer about a week and a half ago. With the promise of the settlement money I was able to buy myself a Jeep Wrangler. I have wanted a Wrangler since I got out of high school and my former boss had a beautiful blue one.

Once we get the check from our lawyer we will finally be able to pay off some bills and start trying to buy a house. I can not wait!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Where's the towel?

I am ready to throw it in. I feel as if I am running myself ragged. I am going to school, I start my 3rd class after spring break and haven't really taken the time to properly study for the 2 I am in now. Luckily you can not tell this by my grades.

Now what used to be my outlet is becoming my bane. I still love the sport and will always be apart of it, but I am tired of the people who always need to be in the spotlight throwing their insecurities at me, and making me doubt myself. News flash people, I do not care anymore.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

What does home look like?

I wish I could tell you. These past two weeks have been so hectic. The Divas held our first home bout this past Saturday, and as usual, we sold out, had a great time, and enjoyed the company of fellow derby people.

But the worst part of the bout is what goes on behind the scenes, the communication, or lack there of between multiple parties. I assisted in producing the program, we sent out deadlines, but those were ignored. Thank you so much to Mike the printer guy, who always goes above and beyond for all of his customers.

So, in the past two weeks I have not been home for 24 hours straight. I arrive home late at night, watch a little of the Olympics, then close my eyes. My cat shadow has decided 8:30 is when I need to be out of her spot on the bed, this is not going well and she needs to learn to wait her turn.

I have been trying so hard to sleep in till at least 10 since I don't usually hit the hay till after 1 or 2 am. Then it is shower, change, maybe a little email reading and it's off to run more errands, babysit, or off to a class I haven't had time to study for. Luckily I am a person who is fairly good at absorbing what I hear and write down in class, but it is coming to that portion in the semester where it's going to get harder. Hopefully I can finally find the time to do what I should have been doing since January.

Well, I have once again avoided studying by updating the world wide web with needless information, and it is 15 minutes until my next medical terminology quiz. Wish me luck!

Monday, February 1, 2010

If you build it they will come

Picture Courtesy of Doug McGinness

The Sirens built the ad campaign, sold the tickets and rented the venue. The fans came out, and DD Hunter made her return as a Diva. This past weekend I returned to the flat track after my May 8th motorcycle accident. I had a blast, got in some good hits, and skated my bottom off.

The cold I have been fighting for the last few weeks saw what a fighter I truly am so kicked it into high gear to take me down. Hopefully I can come from behind and show it the door.