Friday, May 15, 2009

Procrastination...Thy Name is Crystal!

I don't know what it is in my genetic make-up that makes me put things off until the absolute last minute. Even things that I enjoy doing! I've always been a night-before kind of gal...drove my mom nuts.

I spent several hours yesterday doing almost all my schoolwork from the last six weeks. One of the true joys of online classes is that as long as the stuff is turned in before the class ends, you're good. Yesterday I took four quizzes, did three packs of busy work, answered about twenty discussion questions, discussed three topics with classmates, and finished my last case study.

Now all I have left is three papers, an individual dietary analysis, and two final exams. I probably should have done some of that today, but I wanted to finish two books I've been reading. I still have until midnight tomorrow until they are due!

It irritates the hell out of my hubby, but I just seem to work better under pressure. If I had started these papers four or five weeks ago, I would still be working on them today. And they would have changed several times and the final draft would be horrible. If I wait until tomorrow to do them (all at once), I can sit down and bang out A-B papers. I don't understand how it works, but this method got me from elementary through high school and it's still going strong.

Why try to fix what's not broken?

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Never Long Enough...

Last week, for the first time in eight years, I went on vacation without my husband or boys. I was a little leary of going alone (I've never been away from the boys for more than a night), but I am glad I was definitely worth it.

I got to spend a whole week at my parent's house in North Carolina. The best part was my brother was there every day and my sister came home from law school for two days. I hadn't seen my sister since summer 2008 and my brother since summer 2007. I miss them both so much!

It was great spending time with my parents, too. My mama and I got to catch up on plenty of reading and talking. My dad even took a few days off to hang out with us.

We spent plenty of time wandering around old cemeteries. Most of my cemetery pictures were destroyed during the flood in 2005. So, it was nothing new, but I got to replace what I had lost.
Mystery #28...Why is Eliza Wells (my great-great grandmother) buried beside her second husband, yet have the name of her first husband on her tombstone?

I got to visit my grandparent's (maternal) old garden. It just looks like a grassy field today, but it used to be rows and rows of yummy vegetables. I spent many days helping and playing seemed so much bigger when I was younger! This old water pump still works. It was how we got all our water when we were out there working.

Here is my great-grandfather's old tobacco barn. It's not going to be around much longer.

The second best part of my trip was eating good North Carolina seafood!! You would be suprised at the lack of decent seafood here in California. Thank goodness I can go home and get some! Aaah! Oysters and crabs...I should have taken a picture.
My dad finally got hold of my grandmother's old photo album. My poor brother has spent weeks peeling the pictures out of the old album, scanning them, cropping and touching them up, and putting them in a new album. They are guessing there are over a thousand pictures! I can't wait until I get a copy! Here are my grandparents (yep, my grandfather was in the Coast Guard!)

Here's my daddy around his first birthday...Look at those curls!!

My cousin David was a North Carolina State Trooper. He was killed while on duty ten years ago this month. This bridge is located on Hwy 40 and is named in his honor.

I really missed having my boys underfoot and would unthinkingly break out with a Wiggles song every so often. Yes, I missed J, too! But it was so nice to be home for a little while. I think this is the worst part of the military life. We have at least six years (most likely it will be eleven) before J retires and we can move home for good. Until then, we only get to see our family a couple of times a year.

Visits are never long enough!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

How neat is this? You plug in words or a link to a blog and it makes a little picture with various words you used. Apparently, the bigger words are ones you use most often. You get to play around with the font, color, and layout. Here is what I came up with for this blog...

Wordle: mine

Here is what came out using Edgar Allan Poe's poem "The Raven."

Wordle: poe/raven

And here's one all about me...

Wordle: crystal

Monday, February 23, 2009

This is for you, Buddy!!

My brother has been drawing comics for as long as I can remember and I thought it was time to put some on here. I grew up reading these and I turned out...okay. In other words, WARNING: May contain vulgar and/or offensive content!

Check out some more here.....

Only thirteen years in the making...

Today I signed up for the last two classes for my associates degree! I will mail out my graduation application later this week. I swear I never thought this day would come!

I started taking college classes when I was still a senior in high school in 1996. After 8 moves in 6 different states, taking classes at 5 different schools, having credits transfer to some schools (but not others), and testing out (CLEP) of several classes, I am officially almost halfway to my Bachelor's Degree! How long will that take, I wonder? Ha, ha!!

I still haven't decided what I want to be when I grow up...which makes it pretty hard to pick a major. Lately, I've been vacillating between becoming a middle school math/history teacher, a social worker, or a librarian. My unrealistic choices would be a forensic anthropologist, an archaeologist, or an archivist. Of course, I am still looking for that elusive career of getting paid to read books. One can dream, right?

Either way, whichever I eventually choose, I will need a Master's Degree. So, now I have to find a school that offers a Bachelor's Degree that will lead to a Master's Degree in my chosen field. Confused yet? And I need to figure it out soon, so I can apply and register before the fall semester starts.

Right now I am looking at a Bachelor's Degree in either Sociology or Human Services from Columbia College. Yes, it is an online school and no, I am not happy about it...more on that later. My second choice would be the local school, Sonoma State University. It all depends on how my funding turns out. I'll go more into that in my next post also.

Anyway, back to more certain events...I will start my last two classes the beginning of April and should have my diploma mailed to me in June. Yay! I have all my required courses completed, so I'm taking two fluffy electives. Intro to Human Services (thought I'd see what I'm getting into) and Nutrition. I took the nutrition class solely to mess with the instructor. I can't wait to go into veg*nism, raw diets, and fruitarianism!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

I'm Back!

Wow! Long time, no write! Sorry about that!

Well, our trip home to Key West has come and gone. It was good to be back and, even better, to be warm. It was in the 80's most of the time we were there.

We got to do most of what we had planned...several trips to Jose's Cantina, 5 Brother's Grocery, Benihana (yay, I only got a little sick this time!), El Caney, Hogfish Bar & Grill, El Mocho, etc. Yes, yes, we did more than eat, but boy did we miss the food! And the Con Leches! We can sort of make them here, but they're definitely not the same.

I was able to go back and visit the school I used to teach at when we lived on Big Pine Key. There are only five kids left from when I was there. They all have grown up too fast!

My sister-in-law came home from school for a couple of weeks and we got to see my elusive brother-in-law several times. Unfortunately, my father-in-law (a Florida State Trooper) had to work a few nights, but my mother-in-law was off the whole time. And, of course, my grandpa-in-law popped in and out.

We ended up camping at Bahia Honda again this year. That was a lot of fun. We don't camp like normal people. While we do sleep in a tent, we do it on mattresses with fans running. We have clean bathrooms and a hot shower every night. And then there is the food. Steaks, ribs, sausages...they go all out. I got some really good pictures of the Bahia Honda bridge.

Coming back was bittersweet. I was happy to get back to my fur-babies and my own house and car (no more borrowing!), but we really do not like living here. Everytime we go home to Florida or North Carolina just makes that even clearer. Hopefully, this will be our last tour on the west coast. We definitely aren't requesting it again!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Boring couple of weeks...

Nothing really interesting has happened since my last post.

J came home. It's been awhile since we've been home without him, so it was nice when he came back. And he brought presents...always a good thing!

Turtle got a new video game.

Frog got the Kung Fu Panda movie.

I got a UM jersey.

Most important...he brought Cuban bread!

I love Cuban bread. I took it for granted when we lived in Key West and now that I have no access to it, I realize how much I love it. I used to be able to run in any grocery and grab a loaf. I'm going to have to learn to make it myself, I guess.

The big problem this week is finding someone to watch Winston while we are in Key West this xmas. We had a couple watch him for us last year, but I don't know if they can do it again. I've looked at kennels around here, but they are outrageous! $24 a night is the cheapest I've found. That's almost $600 for the three weeks we'll be gone! Oh, man...I don't know what we're going to do, but I have ten days to figure it out!