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Archive for the ‘john’ Category

We fear change

I wish I had more time every day. Or maybe I just wish I was more effective with my time. There are so many things I am interested in accomplishing, and with a baby coming, I feel like I have limited time to do it in. If I don’t get it done before August, will it ever happen?

I’m scared of things changing. I have a strange relationship with change. Sometimes I need change; sometimes I thrive on it. At the same time, I struggle to accept change – I get nostalgic and sad. And I worry that I haven’t accomplished enough by this stage in my life. Why didn’t I take better advantage of all the time I’ve had while living in Georgia?

Why didn’t I learn to play the mandolin or actually learn to play the guitar decently? What about learning to sew? I don’t know. I guess I’m just feeling the pressure of impending responsibility. I guess it’s called adulthood and I should get used to it. Most people go through this stage of life a lot younger than this, so I really should be grateful for all the extra time I’ve had. And I am.

I just wish I had taken better advantage of it while I had it. I still have a couple of months, it’s true, but everything tires me out during pregnancy. After a trip to the grocery store, I have to go take a two-hour nap. It’s embarrassing but true. So I have dreams of making cloth diapers and baby wipes, of learning to make my own soap, of baking my own bread, and making my own yogurt. I want to make a total lifestyle change, apparently, and time is just running out.

Not to mention my worries of how my relationship with my husband will change. I mean, it already has changed some. How will I handle the changes that happen after the baby comes? I’ve had John to myself for three years now. I’m used to it just being us; I like spending time alone together, taking a day trip on a whim, cuddling at night, just being together. I guess I just worry. Probably for no reason, but I do it anyway.

One thing is for sure, so very much will change in August when we have this boy.

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I don’t know what it is, but in some ways I become less and less mainstream each year that I live. I thought I was becoming your typical LDS – I finally got married, and now we’re expecting our first baby. But that wasn’t typical, either. I was 30 when we got married, and it took us three years after that to get to the baby. Two days ago I was feeling like I was becoming typical of every LDS person out there.

And then I get reminded that I’m not. I took a long drive yesterday and had time on my hands to think. When I passed by a truck that was overloaded with chickens crowded into tiny metal cages, I realized that I couldn’t stand to eat chicken if that’s the kind of treatment the chickens received.

And so John and I did some research on “free-range” chickens. Guess what? They typically aren’t treated any better. I was shocked at the way chickens are housed and handled. I had no idea. After researching several websites, I decided I didn’t want to eat chicken anymore.

That led me to wonder about the other animals I typically eat – beef, pork, turkey. From my research, I know that turkeys are treated just as brutally as the chickens. As for beef and pork, I haven’t been brave enough to check into it. I don’t want to give up meat. I am not the kind of person who believes it is wrong to kill and eat animals. But I do oppose the mistreatment of animals. I don’t eat veal or lobster for those reasons. Now it looks like chicken will be added to the list.

My only concern is eggs. I LOVE eggs so much. But the chickens that are raised to lay eggs are just as mistreated. So until I can buy a house and raise my own chickens to lay eggs for me (I’m serious about doing that, too!), eggs might be out of the question as well.

And I am seriously considering becoming a vegetarian and giving up all meat except for fish or wild game. Does that make me radical? To most of the world, probably not. But to my family and most of the people I associate with, quite possibly.

Anyway, if I do become a vegetarian, I’ll document it here and let you know how it goes. It doesn’t look like an easy lifestyle. But it just may become my lifestyle. If I can convince my husband, that is. He says I’m much more liberal than I think I am. I think he might be right.

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missing John and more blogs

My husband is in Arizona until Tuesday, and it’s so lonely without him. Plus he gets to visit with family while he’s there. I’m jealous.

While he’s there, I get to brainstorm about a lot of things. I acquired a new blog (I’ll tell you about it later.), which means I have to do some thinking – what do I want to do with it? How many blogs can I reasonably keep up? (I currently have 7 active blogs. That’s kind of a lot.) Do I want to cut down, or can I pick up the pace and keep all of them active?

Blogging is a hobby that I’ve been at since 2001. Some of my blogs are related to my freelance writing business, and some of them are meant to update friends and family. And others could potentially become money makers. So I’m going to assess my time and desire and go from there.

In the meantime, send me a comment or an email so I don’t feel so lonely here waiting for John to get back.

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I wrote this post a LONG time ago and forgot to post it. But here you have it – how I met my husband:

Jamie had a really great post about how she met her husband, and she invited everyone else to post their ‘how we met’ story. So here is mine.

My story is different from many ‘how we met’ stories. It wasn’t in high school. It wasn’t even in college. I was twenty-nine when I met John. I had spent a lot of years meeting guys and going out on several hilarious and/or horrible dates with some of them. (Maybe I’ll recap some of them sometime. Because I had some funny ones.) I can’t say that I was an expert at dating, because boy was I ever NOT! But I knew what kind of guy I wanted to find, and I knew I’d know it when I saw him.

The year was 2004. I had decided on New Year’s day that 2004 would be the year I got married. I posted a quote by Gordon B. Hinckley that pointed toward the kind of guy I was looking for, and then I decided to just be and live my life. I adopted a zen-like attitude toward love — I would let each dating situation be what it was, and not expect more or less than that. I decided I needed to open my heart to possibility.

Anyway…on to the meeting part. John and I were in the same ward at church. I can’t remember the exact date of when I saw him, maybe March of 2004, but I know the feeling I had. I knew I wanted to get to know him; it felt inevitable that I would.

And then he and I both ended up at the Cheesecake Factory with several mutual acquaintances. He was the only guy there among a bunch of girls. At first, we were too shy to talk to each other, but when we did talk, we hit it off. We had both traveled, we both had interesting stories to tell. We had ‘flow’.

So woman of the new millennium that I am, I invited him to attend a lecture given by Ursula K. Le Guin. He turned me down. (Okay, he had a good reason, but still.) And then we both participated in a church activity, and afterward I got invited to hang out with people at an ex-boyfriend’s house. I didn’t want to go, but when I heard that John would be there, I couldn’t resist.

And John couldn’t resist me, obviously. He finally plucked up the courage and asked me out in June. We went with another couple to an astronomy lecture at the library (which actually turned out to be a lecture on extraterrestrials — we laughed so hard), went to In-N-Out Burger, and then played games. The other guy ended up kissing me on the cheek, which surprised me (it was part of the game).

Long story short (too late!), John ended up being in the position of dating me and another girl simultaneously. But I knew about the other girl and she knew about me. For reasons that will someday become clear to me, John couldn’t decide between the two of us. The other girl is great, don’t get me wrong, but we’re talking about ME!

This is the point at which my former self would have lost all nerve and self-esteem and give up on him. But I had commited to the zen-like attitude, and I trusted that what was right would happen. So I let our relationship be what it was, though I wasn’t quite sure what it was from day to day. Mostly we were friends, and we hung out and got to know each other.

Until the day that he chose the other girl. I know, right?! I was sad, but not overly. It was what it was, and I accepted that. But that didn’t stop me from getting to know another guy friend in the meantime. And dating the other girl didn’t stop John from still trying to spend time with me and flirt with me a little. So…I wasn’t that worried.

A week after he chose the other girl, he realized his ginormous error, and came back to me. I considered saying “no way — you had your chance,” but once again I kept my heart open, and I gave him a chance. Three months later we were engaged, and four months after that, we got married.

So I didn’t end up getting married in 2004 like I planned, but it was awfully close. And meeting John was the best thing that ever happened to me. We connect on so many levels, and he is my soul mate.

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I have not been the best blogger the past few months. This writing for a living thing sure drains me. By the end of the day, I’m usually mentally exhausted! Which means I never feel like updating my blog. Today, though, I’d much rather write here than write the article I need to write about parrots. Bleh!

So I guess what I’ll do is a quick recap of November:

First, the not happy.

  • I had a client tell me she didn’t like one of the articles I sent her. I know, freelance writers must develop a thick skin, but I don’t have one yet! In fact, I think my skin started out much thinner than most people’s, anyway (ask John!). So I’ve been a little down the past few days.
  • I didn’t make as much money in November as I had hoped. Don’t count your freelance writing gigs before they’re hatched.
  • We still haven’t decorated our house for the holidays. 😦
  • I don’t want you to judge me for this, so be kind: I haven’t felt like doing dishes in over a week. So I haven’t. And nobody else has either. We are down to our last utensil.

The happy stuff!

  • John and I basically get a three week vacation – one week together in Athens (dubbed Holli-Johnny week), one week in Arizona, and one week in Nevada, with a little Utah possibly thrown in. Yay! We definitely need the break.
  • I’m making new friends. There are so many nice people in our church ward, and I finally feel like I’m getting to know some of them. It’s nice. I’m going to a friend’s house tomorrow for some crafting fun.
  • I reconnected with old friends during Thanksgiving. John and I went to Rome, GA to see a couple of my college friends and their family. We played the James Bond game (I’m so opposed to it, but there I was, shooting the bad guys until my fingers hurt!) and had fun with the kids and cats. And we ate yummy food.
  • I’m going to revamp my business model for the new year. I’m going to have a website and do things a little differently. I’ll show the site to you when it’s done. I know I can make the freelance thing work, but I’ll have to do it differently from the way I do it now.
  • I have a wonderful husband who is so amazong and sweet. That’s not specific to the month of November, but I needed the happy stuff to outweigh the not so happy stuff!

Anyway, happy December! I hope your month is a good one.

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tummy trouble

I think it may be time to admit to myself that I’m possibly lactose intolerant. It may also be time to admit to myself that I have no business eating a large peanut butter cup blizzard from Dairy Queen.

But seriously, I think I need to figure out if I have food allergies or some other issue. I’m tired of my tummy hurting!

In other news, John and I are pretending again that we’re considering getting a cat. We want one, but it’s not going to happen. John’s allergic, for one thing. Also, we don’t really have to money to afford a cat since I don’t have a job right now. John will have to content himself with I Can Has Cheezburger? for now. (It took me a few tries before I found this site funny. I Can Has Cheezburger? is a wildly popular blog that makes all kinds of money. Think about that for a second when you click on the link.)

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PhD support group

There should be a support group for people with spouses in PhD programs. If there isn’t one already, I should create it.

Being the wife of a PhD student can be a lonely, frustrating experience. If you’ve had a spouse in school, perhaps you can relate, especially if it was/is a demanding program. I hardly see John, and when I do, he’s usually stressed out about something.

I make meals that I sometimes don’t get to eat with him. I sit in his ‘home office,’ quietly doing my own thing while he does homework just so I can spend time with him at all.

It’s not easy. Sometimes it’s really hard. I understand that being a PhD student is difficult (probably more difficult than I could hack), but being the spouse of one is hard too.

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