Monday, January 28, 2008

similarly speaking

On a similar tangent...
I have recently been looking at the lyrics to many songs, mostly because I am trying to plan a nontraditional wedding with some songs off the beaten path. here are a few gems i have stumbled across, or someone has stumbled across for me (For those of you guys out there who might be reading my blog, i apologize ahead of time for the occasional sappiness of the lyrics, but do yourself a favor and commit a few of these lines to memory. You will thank me later when you are able to woo a girl by pulling a few of these lines off the top of your head in a crunch situation:

"People say we are where we belong./ We hold eachother's hands /As if we're holding on.
And to me a little of your you/ Is like /A little bit of sun /That makes the moon." ~Jon McLaughlin

"So put me in the river and let me say "I do," I'm only alive with you."

~Jars of Clay

Cause I’ll be more than a man for you / I’ll do anything you ask me to / Heartache or heaven / Baby I will, pursue."
~Dave Barnes

"Well you got your good looks - uh huh / And you got your style / And I'd drown here in this ocean / Just to have you float my boat for a while / I got a reputation - uh huh / Don't you worry about that / Just give me a chance and we're never gonna ever look back."
~Pat Green

Friday, January 25, 2008

nontraditionally speaking

If most people took a good look at me, they would probably automatically assume I am a traditionalist. I wear khaki pants. I use my blinker when switching lanes. My hair has never been blue, pink, or green (except that time I got locked out of a hotel room and had to stay in the chlorinated pool for 2 hours...then it was a nice shade of pistachio). I have only one piercing in each ear and no tattoos. I believe in doing what's right, and I love my family.

However, despite all outward appearances, I don't think I'm as much of a traditionalist as it may seem. For example, I love adventure. I will jump off a cliff backwards into a lake. I will jump out of an airplane with my body attached to a parachute and a stranger who is in charge of my fate. I will run a marathon in Alaska, hike to a glacier the day after, then go white water rafting the next day. And I will love every second.

Another example of nontraditionalism: The wedding ceremony. We will not be doing anything the "normal" way. Our songs are not "wedding songs." I will be entering to the tune of Coldplay's "Til Kingdom Come." There will be no singing in the ceremony, just before it, and we will probably have a drummer and a couple of guitars in the mix. The songs are nontraditional songs, but they still contain drops of love and thought within their words. We have three so far..."The Story," "I Will Not Take My Love Away," and "Your Love Will Never Change," none of which are mainstream. We are still looking for the 4th song, but Patty Griffin and/or Derek Webb are lookin' pretty good. - ("When It Don't Come Easy," by Patty...a great song.
And it provides another example of my nontraditionalism in that I am an English teacher and the song title contains poor grammar! ) Bradlee would like a little Bob Dylan in there somewhere, so that might be thrown in, too.

Secondly, we will have games at the wedding. Not your typical "Dollar Dance"-type games. I am talking washers (possibly), croquet, and card games (yes, poker is considered a card game. Don't act so shocked about it.)

Thirdly, I will not be wearing a veil...too much froo-froo for me. I would probably trip on it or get it stuck on a chair as I walk down the aisle. Simple is best where we're concerned, so a flower or something will do just fine. (Sidenote: The lady at David's Bridal threw a veil AND a tiara on my head when I was trying on dresses. TOO MUCH! I am no princess, nor am I bridezilla. I don't want so much stuff...)

Lastly, the groom. He is nontraditional to the core (which I like!). He has more than one tattoo, which surprises the pee out of most people I've grown up with (which I also like!), and he has no fear of tellin' it like it is, which is perfect because that might possibly be one of my biggest fears.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Inspired by 20 degrees

The wretchedness of winter has finally hit here in Misery (I mean, Missouri). They are calling for just an inch of snow here , and the temperatures are hitting the 20s. If it's going to snow here, it should snow hard instead of teasing us with mere inches. The cold makes me an unhappy camper, even in my heated house. I'm thinking it's about time to plan a vacation to get out of this mess. As I thought about the vacation-planning process, I decided it would be nice to share it with readers. So, here it is: How to plan a vacation on a Missouri teacher's salary.

First of all, you need to do some research. Go to your local library and look in the travel section. Check out some books about Australia, New Zealand, the Bahamas, Hawaii, and Greece. Be sure to peek through the
Travel and Leisure magazines as well, as they often provide abundant information and inspiration for travelers.

Second, you should jump on the internet to look at fabulous pictures of the worlds beyond Missouri. You might want to place a cup under your chin to catch a bit of the drool that will inevitably drip from your mouth as you look at pictures of The Maldives, The Big Island of Hawaii, Costa Rica, or the Bahamas.

Third, pick the prettiest place with numerous options for adventure. I highly recommend Hawaii, and I believe I would recommend most of the other above-mentioned places as well, but I've never been to them.

Once you have picked the place, figure out how much it will cost. You will need to visit to plug in your travel destinations in the appropriate blanks. After plugging in your information, the site computes costs for airfare and hotel accommodations. Then you will probably see a very large number with a dollar sign in front of it. This is the amount of money you will owe.

Now it's time to check your paycheck. Take a close look at the number behind the dollar sign, and compare it to the number on that Travelocity Web site. If the number on your paycheck begins with a one and has three numbers after it, you probably shouldn't get your hopes up. And if you're a teacher, you probably noticed that the number isn't very big. It doesn't look too promising, does it? If your paycheck amount is less than the Travelocity amount, you should go ahead and pack your bags...

Then get a Branson brochure, cause you sure as heck can't afford to leave the country.

Monday, January 14, 2008


"Don't worry, be happy." It sounds simple, but this is quite possibly one of the best pieces of advice I have ever received. Who gave me this advice? Bobby McFerrin, of course. His advice came via a song my mom used to play for me when I started stressing about life at the age of 4. "Don't worry," she'd always say. "Be happy." Then she'd magically find the song on the radio at the precise time she needed to play it for me.
It's true, I was a giant ball of stress from the beginning. I think I started stressing about retirement funds and 401k's from age 3 on. One particular instance of ultimate stress came during the watermelon seed episode. I swallowed a watermelon seed and, believing the lies my brothers had planted into my head, began planning my funeral due to the impending explosion within my belly. I was positive the watermelon would begin to grow inside me, and I would die because of it. Therefore, I planted myself on the couch in resignation, crying over the life I would never get to live.
These days, thanks to the encouragement of McFerrin, I will live without worry of another watermelon seed attack.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

good things

it's about time for a discussion of all things good.

good memory: Christmas morning, playing blow darts (not REAL ones) with my dad and brothers. yes, we celebrated Christmas by pelting each other with spit-covered rubber weapons. it was particularly fun when we could hear a "POP" as someone got hit in the face with a juicy one. really, we do love each other; we just have a very special way of sharing that love.
good moment of the day: finally figured out where to get married. it will be at the boathouse at lake springfield, where we saw about 20 deer last night. please don't judge the location based on the label "boathouse." trust me, it's way better than your run-of-the-mill metal building. even this pic does not do the place justice, because when it's dark out the lights shine on the cool stones on the other side of the building and it looks amazing. there's also a lake behind it and a nice big park on the side. perfect.
good music: little big town, pat green, coldplay, colbie caillat. alexi murdough.
good day: friday. but the day those wedding bells ring (figuratively speaking) will be even better.
good flower: orchid. lavender daisies.
good places: hawaii, alaska in june, costa rica, colorado, australia, new zealand, home.
good movie: pride and prejudice. love and basketball. remember the titans.
good parents: mine.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

to answer the question

Students in my class today are writing about their best and worst moments of the past week. in an effort to abide by the golden rule, I will be answering the question today as well. I'll begin with the best (because I AM a true optimist). One of the best things that has happened to me this week has been that I began feeling a little less like I would puke or keel over at any second. This is because Sunday, the BEST day of winter so far (70 degrees!), I had to stay in bed all day, munching saltines and drinking 7-Up. Obviously, my sick Sunday would be my worst moment of the week. We also had some tornadoes rip through the area Monday night. Let me just tell you that tornadoes scare the hiccups out of me. Yes, I went to my mommy and daddy's house to weather the storms in their nice, cushy, out-of-the-elements-of-danger basement. Aw, the comforts of home!

Among the other best moments of my past week, I have been in contact with some long-lost friends. My students may or may not be too young to understand that sometimes you just lose track of friends you thought you would always have. That's what happens when you get old, I guess. I knew I missed talking to them, but it sure does feel great to hear from them again.

The best is yet to come.

Monday, January 7, 2008

wicked weekend

Over the weekend, my mom and 2 sisters-in-law went to STL to see the play, Wicked. Let me just tell you a few things about that experience:
1) I am ridiculously jealous of the voices of the actors/actresses in the play. Their voices were strong, clear, and flawless...ridiculous I tell you. They put them in the middle of a stage and they just belt their hearts out, all while dancing and jumping and flying around. I cannot even begin to imagine doing that in front of thousands the way they do. I would pee my pants on stage, for sure. It's almost sickening--only not.
2) The play itself was spectacular. The lines were witty, and the odd vocabulary development made my day (I AM an English teacher) . Words like disrespectation, confusifying, etc, yessss.
3) I wish I owned the store, Anthropology. Then I would use all of those products to outfit my house, and I would have an excuse to wear that type of clothing...Because honestly, where would I have any business wearing half of those clothes?
4) I think my family needs another baby. Let me be clear about this: The baby will not be mine, nor will it be Angie's, so I guess there's only one sister-in-law left who will take this challenge. Hmmm...I wonder who that might be!?
5) I looked at wedding dresses. Hated them all. Too much froo-froo-ity. Lace, butt bows, gauze, 70-layers,'s all too much. Plus, I would imagine those dresses would weigh about 20 pounds, and in the dead-heat of a Missouri July wedding. Ugh. No thank you.
6) Mr. Coacher and I are still looking for a wedding location. I am thinking Hawaii or Tahiti look pretty good about now.
7) It was 70 degrees here yesterday. Too bad I didn't enjoy it, as I was lying in bed with a fever and a queasy stomach. I still don't feel so hot, but I am begging my students for mercy, and they have been willing to oblige a bit.
8) I was just reminiscing with a friend about a manly-man football player from our high school who is now acting, dancing, and twirling on stage. I will need to reserve some tickets for a future show just to make sure this is true. (This is unrelated to the weekend, but somewhat related to theater so I made it fit.)
9) I want some saltine crackers.

Thursday, January 3, 2008


i have yet to think of a title for this blog because i don't know exactly what i'll be writing about. there are about a thousand and five different things to say, so i'm wondering which should come first in the new year. here are thoughts of mine, in no particular order:
1 - i am getting married in july. this means i will be running around springfun like an idiot trying to get things done. we are thinking semi-nontraditional. there is no need to make weddings awkward, but all too often that is what they become. i think we want a very large party with a wedding thrown in somewhere along the lines. i will also be taking graduate classes and teaching, which means i will be forced to have my head in a book most of the time (this would usually be a good thing, but the books i'll be looking at for classes will be about differentiated instruction, school policies, grade level expectations, etc.; not a beach-read by any means.)
1a - does anyone know of a beautiful wedding location that will hold about 400 people? cause i don't, and it looks like that's about how many guests we'll have. yikes. i guess that means people like us.
2 - i just got back from sunny san diego. even the thought of people surfing at this very moment makes me a bit nauseated. it's about 22 degrees here in springfun, and they are out there in SD getting tanned faces and toned muscles. yes, i realize i could get a fake tanned body and toned muscles from the gym, but where is the fun in that? there is no beach in the gym.
3 - i missed my students.
4 - i will not become bridezilla.
5 - i like chocolate. i also like water. yum.