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June 2010

DON'T MIND THE EMO, THIS TOO SHALL PASS

I don't know about you, but when I fuck up, I stew. Like boil and toil on it over and over and over until it's nice and tender and cooked to DEATH.

I always have.

I remember getting in this one fight in college with my friend and I wanted to talk about it NOW, fix it NOW, and she's very much the 'give me space so I can think' sort of person and I basically chased her around the apartment crying and screaming, "WHY WONT YOU TALK TO ME" and she just kept running away from me going, "I NEED TO THINK YOU CRAZY BITCH!"

I can't believe we're still friends...


But anyway.

As I am prone to do, I recently acted like a giant ass. And I've acted like an ass before, and it's just not funny this time, or cute, or appropriate, or the makings of a fun person to be around, and even after you say sorry you're kinda just still an ass and the only thing anyone can really do is either cut you out forever, or forgive and forget and hope that you, the person who said you were sorry actually takes the sorry serious this time and makes some changes.

Thank god for therapy is all I can say.

So now is the waiting game, and I've never been terribly good at this part, but I guess seeing as I've yet to follow anyone crying through an apartment sobbingly begging them to forgive me this time we just might be in baby steps territory. Maybe?

So I guess what I'm trying to say is while I'm over here being all emo and reflecting on the person I've slipped into, thinking about what kind of person I want to be, and how to get there (yes therapist lady I am listening when you talk at me!) I'll just leave you with this.

My new favorite song in the whole world.

Something about it just makes me happy.

And I don't know about you, but sometimes you need a little happy in between all the brooding and kicking yourself in the ass, for being such an ass.




If you can't see this video, here's the link

SEATTLE HATES ME

I am going to try really hard to make this as snappy as possible 1. because if I talk about this for too long my blood pressure will rise to the astronomical proportions they were last night as I was living this nightmare, and 2. I have a date with some fabulous gay men.


Last night Adam and I had tickets to see Aziz Ansari, the HILARIOUS comedian and actor who plays Tom in Parks and Recreation. Which, if you don't already watch Parks and Rec, you need to go and rent the fist two (3?) seasons and watch them all today. You'll thank me when you're caught up. And if nothing else, watch some of his YouTube videos, they're worth your 15 minutes. 

So, we were excited. I mean what a lovely Friday night treat finally getting to use the tickets Adam got me for my birthday! Yeah for dates!

But you see, Adam and I have a history with Seattle and it goes like this. We buy a ticket to see something fun in Seattle, usually tickets to a play, or a concert or something where there is a SET time we need to be there, and we leave like 900 hours before hand, and Seattle fucks with us and low and behold each and every time we end up RUNNING LIKE IDIOTS THROUGH THE STREETS OF SEATTLE TO MAKE IT TO OUR SEATS.

And people I hate being late. This isn't something I do, like ever. And yet Seattle hates me and wants me to get road rage, and speed, and run through Seattle like a moron.


Yesterday we left the house at 4:30pm for a 7:30pm show. We needed to travel 60 miles, or this distance.

Photo1

As it always goes, the minute we entered the freeway we came upon completely stopped traffic. This drive is known for having traffic in the middle when you go through the city of Tacoma, but right outside my front door? NOT OK.

Because I am brilliant I decided we should take side streets.

I mean, we have iPhones with maps, we can do anything!

So we decided to take this route,

Photo2

I'm not going to lie to you, I felt like the smuggest bitch on this planet as we pulled out of the parking lot traffic jam. That is until we entered ANOTHER parking lot traffic jam.

My adorable little plan to side step the traffic made sure that something that should have taken 30 minutes, took nearly TWO HOURS. 

I'm a little ashamed to admit that there might have been a moment on a stopped, traffic ingested, COUNTRY ROAD where I started screaming at the truck in front of me, and maybe even slammed my hands into the steering wheel repeatedly, and then Adam yelled back at me that if I didn't cut that shit out he was getting out of the car RIGHT NOW and walking home, and then I might have actually even started tearing up, just a little bit.

Great shortcut right?

By the time we reentered the main freeway it was 6:45. We had 30 miles to cover, we still had to enter downtown Seattle, find parking, get to the theater and be seated before 7:30.

Photo

I'm not proud of the fact, ok that's total bull shit, I am totally proud and quite amazed by my little 2001 Ford Focus and my stealthy Jeff Gordon skills that enabled us to cover 30 miles, something that it had been clogged with (which it usually is) traffic that was supposed to make us miss our show, MISS MY BIRTHDAY PRESENT, in about 25 minutes.

People, I broke the law by driving very fast*.

And Adam nearly shit his pants and spent a lot of time with his eyes closed praying.

And my knuckles were blue when we got to the garage.

And when we sat down in the theater we were actually panting.

And I hope to never have to do that ever again.

Except that I am going BACK to Seattle in like two hours because this weekend is Pride Weekend in Seattle and I am going to run about and celebrate some of my fabulous friends and attempt to be equally fabulous and dear god Seattle please just don't make me have to get all crazy road ragey again because that was shitty shitty shitty times.

I'm still amazed we made it.

Your worst traffic story, ever. GO. I need to feel like there are other people that sometimes have to resort to road rage to make it through traffic hell so I feel less alone and stabby. Please tell me I'm not the only one who has a city that hates me.



*for clarification I was usually with the flow of traffic. If by 'flow of traffic' you mean driving fast with the three other people on i5 that are always driving fast also. Safety in numbers? 




Ashley, the Accidental Olympian


END OF JUNE GARDEN UPDATE

Thanks for sticking around after I TMI-ed all over the internet yesterday. That's true love you guys.

Although I have to say it was amazing to hear how the topic of "Am I? No! Could I be?" is probably in the back of the minds of at least 10 women you know on any given day. When you're the one freaking out about it, it's hard to think a single other person could be riddled with 'my life might change today, what do I do?' panic. But odds are, they either are now, or were like two weeks ago.

Being a woman is kind of lame 57% of the time.

But now that we're past that let's talk gardens!

OMG you're just thrilled aren't you?

I knew it. You guys are predictable beasts.

Wait let's back up for a second, shall we? Here the garden is around mid May. I'd planted our two starter tomatoes, and the tiny little seedlings I'd been fostering inside and I was finally feeling like a real live gardener. I remember being REALLY unusually proud at this sight before me.

Silly woman, that looks like nothing more than dirt and weeds.

IMG_3769

But THIS! This is gardening my friends.

062410 Garden Update

062410 Garden Update1

Please note Oly's forlorn look on the other side of the Keep Out Oly Fence. I'm thinking she looks so sad because last weekend her little friend Macy was small enough to walk right through the lattice of the fence and tromp through my carrots with uncontrollable glee.

Seriously it was like she knew she wasn't supposed to be in the garden, so she'd just head right for the damn thing each chance she got.

Thank you Oly for not being small enough to climb through the lattice work.

Except for that one time when I thought you were just in the backyard sniffing, and Adam looked out the window and asked where you were, and I said in the backyard, and then he said, "Actually she's in the garden," and low and behold there you were eating the grass from the lawn while being in the garden, sticking your head through the fence to reach the lawn. It was like you thought it was opposite day or something.

We still don't know how you got in there. 

Next time if you want to eat grass, just stand in the lawn and eat. You don't need to go into the garden to then try to stick your neck through the fence to reach the lawn. That's a highly convoluted and ridiculous method of grass retrieval.

Crap now I can't trust large or small dogs in my yard without supervision.

Gardening is hard.



Ashley, the Accidental Olympian


SO. NOT. READY.

I don't know about you, but if you read enough mommy blogs, have enough friends with kids, and play house with your boyfriend long enough, eventually once in a blue moon you might actually find yourself being all, "Kids... Hmm, maybe I could do that." And you float around for an hour or two wondering if you could do the whole parenting gig while thoughts of bike rides with your kids dance in your head.

And then you switch birth control pills because the other one you were on since like forever no longer makes a generic and you're like Oh Fuck No I'm Not Paying 45 A Month To Be Baby Free so you ask for a new pill, and they give you one, and you take it, and then all of a sudden you go from being normal period lady to like OMG NOTHING.

But you kind of brush it off the first month.

Because you live in a land of denial.

And then in the second month of this weird territory your alarms start going off because, um things really ARE different.

And suddenly what was a light huh? sort of moment is now full blown PANIC.

Suddenly you're thinking about that debt you wanted to get out of and how you'd be NOT getting out of it, like ever, if that pee test comes back positive.

And instantly you're reminded how you're the kind of person who CRINGES when you have to spend 40 bucks for dog food once a month, which therefore makes you think about how if 40 bucks once a month hurts, financing kids will feel like peeling off all your skin and then being splashed with acid. Twice.


And you think about how you JUST fucking got a raise and wow, that'd be history with a small human to care for.

And while you're contemplating how you're about to go from poverty to POVERTY you remember that wild and impulsive trip you wanted to take next March and you maybe tear up a little inappropriately while you mourn a lifetime of child-free vacations you've yet to even book.

And before you're even done contemplating the poorness, and the loss of vacations and your selfish life of freedom and me-ness you're hit with EVERYTHING YOU'VE EVER WANTED TO DO BEFORE HAVING KIDS AND OMG I AM SO NOT SANE AND HEALTHY ENOUGH TO HAVE A CHILD SOMEONE HOLD ME.

But then you talk to your doc and she says, "Oh, did no one tell you that the new pills we put you on give you drastically little to no periods? So sorry! Yes that is normal and you are perfectly ok and not with child!"

 
Cue me falling over dead in happiness and relief and also a little irritation because HELLO doc I would have liked that info two months ago!

 
*****
 

So in conclusion, I might want a second dog but this little lady is SO not ready to be a mommy. Maybe when I'm like, 45 or something.

And to all the moms I know in real life or internet life, I bow you to and kiss your feet, and how the fuck do you do it? And when you found out did you maybe cry? Or was it totally planned and exciting? And when is it ever really the right time to be a parent? Or is it always just a terrifying leap of faith you have to just deal with? And seriously someone really needs to hold me already because LORDY what a weird week.

Please excuse me while I go and eat a month's worth of birth control pills for lunch.



Ashley, the Accidental Olympian


ONE, IS THE LONELIEST NUMBER

As I've already mentioned, this weekend Adam and I had the world's cutest house guest staying with us. Her name is Macy, and she's about three months worth of crazy puppy terror love.

Macy5
Having her in the house this weekend was pretty much everything I expected.

Oly loves Macy, Macy loves Oly, and all weekend they did nothing but this.




 
We would physically have to break them apart after a while because if we didn't stop them it was possible they would continue to play until one or the other had a heart attack and just died. Adam's parents were thrilled because for the first time in a month Macy didn't wake them up at 5am to play, and Adam and I were thrilled because for the first time Oly didn't constantly follow around our human guests demanding they PAY ATTENTION TO HER. And yes, when Oly wants attention she uses all caps. That's how serious she is about harassing guests.

I have always known that dogs are pack animals, that they do better when they have another of their kind, that they are social creatures, that two dogs entertain one another, or that two dogs destroy the house less, even that two dogs are happy dogs, but until this weekend I forgot that really truly the mantra is, TWO DOGS MEANS OLY IS A GREAT DOG TO BE AROUND.

I don't think financially adopting another dog is the right move for us.

And so we probably wont do something today, tomorrow, or this month.

But this weekend reminded me of how much Oly is lacking. How much even with our walks, and play dates, and doggy daycare Oly still needs more than we can give her.

More than anything, she needs one of these.

  Luther Petfinder

Peaches petfinder

Holly Berry Petfinder

Fuzzy&Moe Petfinder


(Click on any of the images to be taken to the dog's corresponding Petfinder.com page. Each featured pet is currently up for adoption in the state of WA and in need of a forever home! Broken links mean the pooch found a home. Gooooooooooo Adoption!)

 

So really, there is only one question left to ask.

Adam, can we keep um?




Ashley, the Accidental Olympian


RAISE

Recently I was given a raise.

A RAISE!

HIGH FIVE FOR RAISES!


Thereby proving once and for all that good things do in fact happen to marginally ok people. Even further reaffirming what I believed all along, that if I stuck with it, grinded through some tough shit, eventually things would turn around and my life would not always be defined by that time I lost my job in December of 2008. Ok, well I'll probably always remember that moment since it completely flipped my life on its ass, but you get the point.

The only thing about receiving a raise is now I have to finally turn this poor train around and once and for all get the fuck out of debt.

 


See, in 2008 I vowed to put stop the mindless dance of, pay off a huge chunk of my credit card, and then go out and spend twice as much. I was so exhausted from my Paula Abdul routine of three steps forward and one step back. So I had a mission, and it was boring, and money was tirelessly tight even though I was making great progress, and suddenly December 2008 was going to be my FINAL payment meaning I would start 2009 off shiny and debt free.

And people, I was THRILLED.


And then on December 5th 2008, I lost my job.

And now in late JUNE of 2010 I am going to hop back on the debt reduction wagon I started long ago, and try to finally put this beast to rest.

And, it sucks.

Because I was almost there once.

But then I was laid off, and finding a new job wasn't as simple as I'd expected it to be, so I took my credit card out of its protective drawer, removed the, "DO NOT SPEND, I WILL CUT YOU!" sticker placed right there on the front, and started spending to stay alive.

But not anymore.

 

 

You know the worst thing about getting a raise and using it to pay off your debt? You're still poor. Even though you're not, really. You got a raise! Yeah for raises! And while others frolic, or vacation, buy new shoes, or go out to eat with their raise, you are paying off your debt. And no matter how you spin it, saying, "Yeah I didn't do anything exciting this weekend, BUT I paid off like $400 this month on my credit card, so that was cool," just doesn't have the same ring to it as something like, "And then this weekend I went to Cabo. Just cuz. God look how tan I am!"

But I don't care.

I'm sick of drowning in shallow water.

Hey credit card, thanks for keeping me alive through the unemployment, and the year or so long period of getting my life back in order, but FUCK YOU.

You've had your fun.

It's my turn again, damn it.



Ashley, the Accidental Olympian


OUR WEEKEND VISITOR

This weekend Adam and I have a visitor.

Ok, we actually have two human visitors, and two dog visitors, but can I be honest? I am excited to see our human visitors seeing as they are Adam's parents and all, but I am REALLY losing my mind about a certain dog visitor.

You are totally wondering why the hell I would be so excited about a DOG coming to my house this weekend aren't you?

Because she looks like this.

IMG_2049

You just died didn't you?

The cuteness radiating out of that image, the levels of precious spewing forth from those ADORABLE blue eyes just swelled your heart to 500 times its normal size and you keeled over dead. 

Now do you get why I'm excited about this weekend?

Adam's parents will have two choices at the end of this weekend. Either A. leave the puppy with me, or B. move in permanently so I don't have to be separated from this ball of fluff.

Their choice. 





Ashley, the Accidental Olympian



LOOK! PICTURES! NO MORE SAD STUFF!


I can pretty much assume that when I write something sad and oh-so very heavy that you, my lovely readers go into this sort of shocked silence. Right before I hit publish I always wince because I know my words are going to shock you all into tight lipped horror, and honestly I don't like to freak you out.

But I hit publish anyway, because I know it's good for us.


So today is a new day and forgive me for scaring you dear readers yet again. But I feel it is my duty as the captain of this blog to talk about sad shit every so often to break up the monotony that is oh you know, my fascination with gardening. Or my dog.

Today is a new day, so back to our regular programming!

 

 

LOOK! It's my garden! Things are growing! Even if they are also being eaten by bugs I have yet to identify, or stop.

I now totally get why organic produce is like a million dollars.

And I totally get why it is better for you. Have you ever stood in the gardening section of a store and tried to pick a bug repellent that you’re willing to spray on your garden, knowing very well that whatever you spray is ending up directly on your food?

HELLO ORGANIC PRODUCE! Let’s be friends.

IMG_3925

IMG_3927



Early this spring I planted dahlia tubers in a sort of, "Well let's see what happens" kind of way, and by the magic that is sun and water, I suddenly have real live plants.


Seeing as these beasts are going to get to over 4 feet tall, I'm already sort of wondering if am ready for this sort of flower wrangling.

Only time will tell.

IMG_3941

 
Oh! And just to keep this post moving forward on the holy-crap-my-life-is-exciting-and-so-not-sad-and-dramatic train, LOOK my roses are blooming. Like insanity.

I don't care what you say, blooming roses are definitely not sad, nor depressing.

Ok, who feels like skipping while holding hands?

THIS GUY!

IMG_3942
IMG_3949

Ok, so have we all recovered?

Good.

I love you bitches, and believe me, I don't like to scare you.

Too much that is.




Ashley, the Accidental Olympian


FORGIVE ME, THIS ISN'T GOING TO BE A LOL TYPE OF POST

By the magic of blog linking, somehow I recently stumbled upon a blog called, mamapundit. Sadly I didn't find her corner of the internet because of a funny post of hers, or a rave review, but because she had recently lost her son Henry after his most terrible battle with a drug overdose and traumatic head injury.

Right now you are saying to yourself, "Why in the world is Ashley talking about this?"


Because as I read more and more of her words, as I read about her family's struggle with this shocking and terrifying loss, I can't help but suffer the most vivid of flashbacks.

Henry was beaten because of a drug deal gone wrong (they are assuming), and in the aftermath of the beating took a lethal dose of drugs. The combination caused him to spend over a month in the hospital fighting desperately for his life with his family by his side, only to eventually lose his tremendous and heartbreaking battle for his life.

In the aftermath of his death his family, rightfully so, wants answers. To his beating. To the reason no one called 911 for over 24 hours. To his following drug overdose.

And the Knox County Sheriffs Department has yet to provide them with any answers, convictions, or peace of mind. Although they say they are working on it.


If I was the sort of person who prayed, I would pray for them to find answers, for justice to be served quickly, for their confusion and the questions surrounding their son's terrible end to come to some sort of conclusion.

Sadly, I understand the reality of how NOT like Law and Order our law enforcement and justice system really is.

In the aftermath of my Grandmother's murder we all made comments about how it seemed everything wasn't going to be resolved in a neat little one hour segment. What a shame. Turns out the main thing the crime dramas leave out of their programs are the unanswered questions, the sometimes YEARS of waiting with no leads, the complete unraveling of the families in the aftermath, and the ridiculousness of a real life crime investigation.

In the absence of answers, in the absence of any real investigation, instead we all stood around in a circle and could only ask the sky, "Why?" It seemed all we ever did was demand answers from people who could give us nothing, and when it seemed especially hopeless, some even pointed fingers at one another.




I hope down to the bottom of my being that Henry's family receives from Knoxville what Albuquerque failed to provide my family with for so very long. I hope so emphatically that they aren't forced to wait three silent years.

Because as much as we want to believe that everything can be solved in a neat one hour package, the reality of it all is that most times there is no justice.

Or when it finally does come, it's so late in arriving, and so many other people have been hurt in the time that lapses that by the time they tell you they've found you answers, you aren't sure if you should even believe them. How can they have found the answer now? Why this person? Why so long? Why did so many other people have to die before you could find justice? And when the judge makes his ruling and all the families shuffle out of the courtroom, does it even really feel like justice?




Investigations with no end, family members battling drug addictions, two topics that all hit far too close to home for me.

Please visit mamapundit and give her and her family the support they most desperately need. And if you're feeling especially generous, please find it in yourself to give to her son's foundation. A scholarship intended to fund treatment and deliver guidance to youth that so desperately need it. Feeling even more generous? Maybe donate to a victims assistance organization here in WA I've donated to before in memory of my Grandmother.

Please, as cheesy as it sounds, hug someone close to you and tell them that you love them.

This world is a shitty shitty place sometimes.




Ashley, the Accidental Olympian


AND THEN, IT FELL INTO THE LAKE

One of the best things my father ever gave me was a boat. Before it was his, it was one of his best friends, so by the time it came into my possession it was well loved, and WELL used. There are nearly 30 years of boating good times logged on this baby, and most everything on it when we got it was original to the boat. . 

But even though our boat is anything but brand new we love it anyway, because um, what sort of crazy person wouldn't love getting a free boat? 


So imagine if you will it is Saturday morning. Adam and I have the boat packed, the fishing poles ready, it is an absolutely amazing June morning in WA. By 8:45am we were placing our sturdy vessel into the water, hoping we might catch our dinner as well as some vitamin D. We had high expectations for this trip seeing as we've heard countless old timers tell us of the glory that is early morning fishing. Jealous of these stories of killer fish we had finally agreed to set our alarms and just do it already. We were there, caffeinated, and ready to see if AM fishing was all it's hyped up to be.

We sit at the edge of the point quietly with the trolling motor off, we're simply floating on the silent lake as Adam secures the worms on our hooks and I hold a stick for Oly to chew on.

Another boater zips past us with a fancy new trolling motor.


"Wow, that trolling motor makes our motor look like a pussy."

"I know right?"

"We should probably get a new motor one of these days. Sometimes I think this guy doesn't have much more left in him."

RRRRRRRRRRRRREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG

"That's not a good sound..."

Adam peers over the back of the boat at the sputtering electric trolling motor.

"MOTHER FUCKER."

"What?"

"Right as I looked over the side the propeller fell off the motor and sunk to the bottom."

Cue the most sad and depressed look I have ever seen on a grown man.



Fast forward to the ridiculousness that is Adam and I using what I can only imagine are CHILDREN'S BOAT PADDLES to paddle our asses back to the dock. The person who designed these collapsible devices didn't want stranded boaters to be able to safely return to shore, this person created them only to make others look like complete and total jackasses. Thanks guy, mission accomplished.

We managed to be back at home and completely unloaded by 10am. 

Is that sinking in? We had packed a boat, headed to a lake, launched a boat, watched as our motor died on us, paddled to shore, reloaded our now non functioning piece of metal, and returned home BY 10am ON A SATURDAY MORNING. That's just not right.

Even better? When I walked in the door, frustrated and feeling especially defeated I managed to scrape off all the skin on the side of my pinky toe. I then fell to the floor in a heaping pile of curse words.



So, my conclusion on early morning fishing is that it BLOWS TOTAL AND COMPLETE ASS.

Thanks old timers, for nothing.



Ashley, the Accidental Olympian