Thursday, July 30, 2009

Girl Talk: Relaxation

I had big plans to participate in GTT last week. I even started the draft of a post about my weird quirks. But then I realized I'm not just idiosyncratic, I'm completely insane. The other participants might be writing about the odd foods they like whereas I would be discussing my complusive need to wash my hands after a meal because I feel like my hands must smell like food and then if I get in my car my steering wheel will smell like food and it won't bother me then, but it will bother me the next time I drive because what if it makes my hands smell THEN when I haven't eaten anything? Just, for instance.

So. Skipping onward to this week's topic: how do I unwind?

I have come to realize that I'm kind of an anxious person. "Kind of" being a generous understatement. I worry. I obsess. I worry obsessively. I obsess about worrying. I overthink. I overanylize. I overreact. Combine these natural tendencies with, oh I don't know, a stressful academic regimen, emotional trauma, or relationship woes and you've got a recipe for disaster!

Here are some things that help me be less anxious and a more enjoyable human being.
  1. Going out to a movie. Two hours where I can concentrate on some ficticious story with nobody talking while eating snacks? Yes, please.
  2. Running on the treadmill while watching horrible mindless reality TV such as the Real Housewives, MTV's True Life, or anything on TLC.
  3. Taking a benadryl and going to sleep. I have allergies, so it's allowed!
  4. A HOT bath. If I'm really feeling anxious it helps to have a trashy magazine or the TV on in the background.
  5. Cleaning my house while listening to Friends DVDs. This is because I'm a student. Housework = more fun that homework.
  6. Grocery shopping. I'm sure this won't always feel "fun" but at this time in my life, I enjoy wandering around a store thinking of things I might like to eat.
  7. Talking on the phone with a girlfriend.
  8. Having a beer or a mixed drink. More than one or two and I get all heart poundy and nervous and it is no longer unwinding but becomes winding UP.
  9. Driving while listening to music.
  10. Being in an environment with a lot of kids and/or other loud, interesting people. You know, where the food is good but the focus isn't on me.
  11. Taking a shower and crying.
  12. Getting... you know, intimate.
  13. Medicating.
For a moment I actually considered breaking these into separate categories: (a) things that relax me after a regularly stressful day versus (b) things that help me unwind when I'm HIGHLY stressed out. But for now I think I'll just say that some of these methods work better than others and just leave it at that.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Someone please teach me.

As someone who voluntarily spurts my thoughts and feelings onto the internet on a semiregular basis, one might think that I have some sort of technological knowledge and could at least hold my own in a discussion about things gaget-related. This is incorrect. I am stunningly lost when it comes to things pertaining to the internet and, like, editing the way things look on my page (code? what?). I tried and failed to set up google analytics. And JUST LAST MONTH I figured out how to set up a feed reader and I am still getting used to how it works (which, I will admit, is much better than trying to just remember the web pages of all the blogs I wanted to read like I used to do. Yeah). Jewels = not so great with the new technical thingamajigies.

Today I bought this:

The Blackberry Curve.

And, uh. I hate it.

Okay, that's not true. I don't HATE it. But I don't LOVE it, like Mr. Verizon Store Man said I would. And I'm kind of kicking myself because I had thanked him for telling me all about the phones and told him I was planning to come back tomorrow but he was all "oh you won't regret buying this phone here look at this and this and that and just listen to my sooooothing voice don't worrrrrry, haaand over your credit card it'll all be over sooooooon." And so I bought it. And now I'm not sure it's the right phone for me, so I am considering taking it back.

I am someone who tends to have very specific requirements for items like bags and hairbands so I definitely don't want to jump right into a new phone purchase without carefully deciding on the characteristics I need. So here is (roughly) what I am looking for:
  • I need a phone that can go on the internet, where I can look up directions and do some web browsing and whatnot while away from my computer. I would like to be able to check my email. And having little application buttony things wouldn't be so bad, but it's not a requirement. But is a Blackberry or whatever THAT much better than a regular phone plus internet?
  • I do not want an iphone. I have Verizon and don't want to switch. Also, I am not interested in purchasing an iphone and defiling it somehow in order to make it compatible with Verizon. Also, I don't want to spend $300.
  • I want to spend $100 or less. This is the amount of my upgrade with 2 more years of Verizon.
  • I want the phone to look and act like a phone when I use it as a phone. I want it to be easy to hear the other person and for it not to be too bulky when I hold it up to my ear.
  • No flip phones! I break them in half.
  • A largeish screen would be nice.
  • I desperately need something easy to use. I might just not have a delicate enough touch, but the little rolly ball thing on the Blackberry Curve is driving me crazy.
  • I thought I didn't want a touch screen phone because of the whole seeing it in the sunlight aspect. But now I am rethinking this opinion and feeling unsure.
So... what should I get? The EnV? The Blackberry Storm? Something that flips open sideways with the qwerty keyboard? Something with a touch screen? A Tin Can With Piece of String?

This is a cry for help.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

quick update

- I had a nice birthday. Lovely hugs, phone calls, comments on blog, tweets, etc (THANK YOU HUNNIES!). And nice presents.

- I thought I was just having bad allergies like I do at my parents' house (usually from any or all of the following: dust, pollen, grass, animals, wood smoke, unfamiliar perfumes, more dust, more pollen) but it turns out that I have an actual cold. The kind with poppy/clogged ears, one of those keep-you-up-all-night dry tickling coughs, and a runny nose that responds neither to sniffling nor blowing. The good news is that if I'm going down I'm taking EVERYONE in my family with me since we all shared sodas at the kiddie park yesterday.

- Every night this week one of my sisters has been making a "signature cocktail" for the day. On my birthday it was POG and passion fruit rum.

- My dad is planning to do his magic show tomorrow night.

- I'm taking Miss Grace out to lunch tomorrow (well, today rather). We have lots to catch up on and I especially want to give her lovey hugs because her grandpa just died and that is just difficult and suckey.

- My life is still teeming with drama but between this cold, the signature cocktails, and the variety of medications from the bottom of my sister's purse it feels as though I'm experiencing conversations and events through a layer of cotton or that my brain has a sweater on over it or... some other way of explaining that I feel like I'm more an observer than an active participant so the upswing is that I've been less weepy than I might have otherwise been.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

And I'll cry if I want to.

Just a few minutes ago at midnight my boyfriend called to wish me a happy birthday. Some other friends(?) also shouted what I assumed to be birthday wishes in the background. He asked me about my plans for the day and then said he would call me back again in about 20 minutes.

"It's your birthday" he said, "don't cry."

Today I'll be at my parents' house, hanging out with family. That was what I originally had planned. I think it will still be fun, since there will be lots of chaos with all the little kids running around. And my family is sweet-- I am sure they will make my birthday nice. I'll try not to think about the things that are making me feel sad and buck up and enjoy the day. Thank all of you lovelies who gave me such great suggestions of what to do today. I'm sure over the next couple of days I'll try all of them. I'm particularly excited to walk around naked while watching The Last Unicorn. Molly, dear, how do you know me so well?

Saturday, July 25, 2009

feeling sorry for myself

<--- This is how I felt last year on my birthday. And so far, it is looking like it might be equally awesome this year. And by that I mean not awesome at all.

My boyfriend is out of town and doesn't seem to 'get' it. And some of my family members have taken issue with my tattoo, to the point of saying... some things they possibly don't entirely mean.

Last year didn't actually suck because I ended up going out with lovely friends and imbibing myself silly. But this year many of my friends are out of town. So. Anybody have tips for pulling myself up by my metaphorical bootstraps and making the most out of my birthday? Or should I just pretend it's not happening and celebrate later in the hopes of avoiding the crushing disappointment that I feel is just around the corner?

Wednesday, July 22, 2009


Dear Birthday,
Couldn't you hang back for a week or two? I think I'll be more ready for you then.
~ Jules

Dear Palmdale Dude,
If a group of friends are splitting the check at a restaurant, it is not appropriate to hand me $17 for your $17 dinner. In California, we pay tax and tip. When I ask you for a few extra bucks because I think you have forgotten to include it, open up your wallet-- don't tell me it's just "your way" to not tip. If you don't pay tax or tip, your friends have to pick up the slack. And guess who we won't be inviting next time we go out to eat?
~ Jules

Dear Duggars,
For your next published work, please refrain from writing in the first person for both of you. It is just plain aggravating to read "I (Jim Bob) went to the store" or "I (Michelle) was exhausted" over and over again. Also, tuna fish and barbecue sauce? Really?
~ (Jules)

Dear Family,
I did not get my tattoo to express anguish or depression. I am not trying to hurt anyone, and I am sorry if I have. Of course I love you and care what you think, but I'm not about to live my life based on other people's judgment.
~ Me

Dear Steve Madden,
I think $50 is too much to pay for plain black flats. And that was on sale.
~ Jules
p.s. Settle a bet- are you related to John Madden?

Dear Potential Employers,
Please hire me. I know I am a new nurse, but I am meticulous, thorough, smart, and eager to learn. Give me a chance!
~ Jules, RN

Dear Silver Dollar Sized Patch of Skin on the Back of My Leg,
Why are you cold all the time? Are you trying to tell me that I have a vascular disease? Please go away.
~ Jules

I borrowed this format from Swistle and Nowheymama.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Sleeping Beauty

I used to put Bowie in a crate in the bathroom when I went to bed because if I left him out he would (a) jump up on countertops and knock things over, (b) jump up on the bed and pounce on my feet, (c) jump up on the bed and pounce on my head, (d) try to get into cupboards, (e) meow loudly, or (f) all of the above. Now, after 5 years, it finally seems that he usually will sleep on my bed with me at night. And I love it.

I guess the room was too bright for his little eyes.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

If I were going to BlogHer,

I would bring these earrings.

And probably that dress that I'm wearing in the pic, too. I'm kicking myself for not getting a photo of it but how about this? Just imagine me in a long flattering, swishy dress that shows off my tattoo and can be dressed up or down, looking not unlike Aphrodite. And then when tipsy fabulous bloggers told me it was nice, I would say something like "Oh this old thing? It was $14 at Ross and I tried it on over my clothes!" because I can't just accept a compliment without being awkward.

But, alas, I will not be going to BlogHer this year. Last year, Miss Grace took me with her (told me what to wear, paid for my ticket, the works) in exchange for staying in my apartment and drinking PBR in the hot tub. I was wide-eyed about the whole thing and tended to freeze up when people asked me what my blog was about (my "blog" that I had started writing the previous month). We did have a fabulous time, though.

This year, they had the nerve to move it all the way to Chicago which is rather less convenient and more expensive. So instead of schmoozing and !!!!ing and cornering my favorite bloggers to recite my favorite things they have written, I'll be here. Jealous of you.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Jules, RN

Yesterday, I woke up to congratulatory text messages from two people in my class, so before I even knew, I knew.

(You can go to this web site and type in the name to see if that person has an RN license. Once people in my class started taking the test, we all started searching for each other's names to see who passed and when they found out.)

So I got up, went to the web site, typed in my name and THERE IT WAS. I passed. I passed the NCLEX. I am officially a Registered Nurse.

Today, I got this in the mail.

You might not be able to tell in this pic, but that shiny square in the lower right hand corner says "RN." That's me, RN. Royal Nutcase. Rambling Nobody. Rustic Napper. Registered effing Nurse.

Thank you to everyone who sent me happy thoughts or good vibes or who kept your fingers metaphorically crossed for me. Here is a little something for you: {{{ big wet slobbery kiss }}}


Monday, July 6, 2009

Unicorn, now with (some) color

My tattoo is still not done yet, but it's definitely coming together!

I wish I could say that someone had called out "Jules!" and I turned and grinned in surprise and that's why my eyes are all big and I look kind of manic. But actually I was feeling tired and droopy so I widened my eyes on purpose. Slightly, or so I thought.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Pasta Salad

So apparently my mental ratio of pasta to sauce was way off last night because I now have a ton of leftover pasta and only a little sauce.

That is actually the pasta that is still leftover AFTER I made the following recipe. Note to self: pasta looks smaller before it is cooked.

Today I made this, the easiest pasta salad ever.

Cooked, refrigerated pasta
Something Else (chicken? other meats? veggies? fancy cheese?)
Olive oil
Lemon juice

Put the pasta in a bowl. Add olive oil and lemon juice to taste. Stir. Add your Something Else. I had some chicken with garlicky mushrooms in the fridge so I cut the chicken up into little pieces and added that. Stir some more. Now you're done!

If you happen to have a jar of olives in your fridge and you are thinking "maybe I'll add some olives, that would probably taste good," don't bother. You won't be able to get the jar lid off.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Girl Talk: Shoesies!


Wanna see the shoes I am wearing right this moment? Here they are.

Glamorous, I know. But these babies have carried me through A LOT of 12 hour clinical days at the hospital. And, thanks to the brand-spankin-new insoles I bought (because I was too cheap to buy actual new shoes), I can still use them on the treadmill. Win.

Okay, here are my other shoes. The heap below is the general "casual" shoe section of my closet minus a couple pairs that must still be in my car from the road trip. Those crazy high top DCs are still unlaced because I haven't quite gotten up the guts to actually wear them.

Anyhow, the shoe rack contains more shoes.

And there are shoe boxes next to the shoe rack.... And, see waaayyy up there on the top shelf of the closet?


I mentioned in a previous post that I am totally the Princess and the Pea when it comes to shoes. They must be comfortable or else I will not wear them. If they are cute then certainly I will buy them, as you can see here:

Most of these are around the semi-ish comfortable range on my feetsies. They have been worn on between one and five occasions. Approximately. Give or take. Ish.

Sometimes, I reach for these.

They are pretty and sparkly and perfect for a dinner or wedding or to dress up a summer outfit, but not great for extended periods of dancing or walking.

More often than not, I go back to my old faithfuls.

I know they're not much to look at now, but trust me they had their heyday. You know, back when I wore them to junior prom.... But I slap 'em on with a pair of jeans and I am ready to rock the night away. Or, as in the case of a recent weekend in Chico, drive and dance and text and be called uptight and judgmental the night away.