Tuesday, December 30, 2008
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
Monday, December 22, 2008
Thursday, December 18, 2008
Apparently, I am mean. But, I'm okay with it.
Wednesday, December 3, 2008
Tuesday, December 2, 2008
Friday, November 28, 2008
Thursday, November 27, 2008
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Sunday, November 16, 2008
It is only in hindsight that I realize that when it comes to knowing when to say “when” with my ex-boyfriend, I was That Girl. Ugh. The one you never want to be. You know, she’s the one in the horror movie who decides to leave the secure cabin with only her flashlight while the killer is on the loose. Some people yell, “No! No! Don’t do it!” at the screen. They empathize, seeing that she just doesn’t see the reality of the situation she is in. I, on the other hand, was usually the one leaning over to my friend and whispering my judgment, “What a moron. Who would be stupid enough to do that?”
Apparently, I was stupid enough to do that. Twice.
The first time, there was some mutual hemming and hawing. Did we really want to do this? Was breaking up the answer, or did we just need to think about some things? So, we took a month off, to ponder our relationship. While apart, I pondered many things, but apparently did not spend enough time pondering the times he told me I just wasn’t his type. Or that he thought I should dress sexier when we went out (I did remind him that going to Red Robin is not really considered "going out."). Essentially, he wanted to change me. But, blinded by the drunkenness of first love, and armed with my flashlight, I left the cabin to wander around in the woods.
Three weeks later, he broke up with me again. I yelled at him, slammed a door in his face, and told him we would never be friends. Two whole weeks later, I decided that enough time had passed for being friends to work out just fine. This time, I didn’t even bring the flashlight.
Regular friends lasted about a week. Then, we made out in the car. And as movie-goers everywhere yelled, “No, no! Don’t do it!” I entered the dreaded “friends with benefits” stage. That’s what I call it now-because that’s what it was. At the time, I called it, “Just seeing what’s going to happen,” or even better, “It’s complicated. He needs to take things slowly and not put any labels on this.”
Oh, yes. I was That Girl. The one I had silently judged for years, seeing her as weak and pathetic. Internally rolling my eyes when she tried to explain why she was still with that same boyfriend we’d all told her to break up with.
And then, finally, enough was enough. I locked the door to the cabin, put the chair up against it, and called the cops. But, even though I finally wised up, I learned not to judge the girl with the flashlight. Sometimes, you just have to see for yourself what’s out there.
Friday, October 31, 2008
Monday, October 20, 2008
On Sunday, there was a 91 year old man who got baptized. Ninety-one! He just became a Christian a few months ago, and wanted to be baptized, so there he was. I got nervous when they dunked him (he seemed a little fragile), but I also cried, because I mean, what better a picture of new life, at any time, through Jesus. It was pretty cool.
Another time, we were doing communion and I noticed a man in a wheelchair a few rows in front of me. He seems to be completely paralyzed, based on his wheelchair and such, but I don't really know all the details. But, when it was time to take communion, the usher standing near us quietly leaned over and placed the communion cracker in his mouth, and then helped him sip the grape juice by holding it to his lips. I seriously think it might have been the most beautiful thing I've ever seen.
Sometimes, when we're singing, all of my doubts and questions and worries go away, for just a few minutes. I feel the peace and truth of God while I sing songs about him. Usually they are the hymns or some other song with lyrics that aren't incredibly repetitive. And even if the sermon was boring (which it usually isn't. I'm just saying), and even if I'm sleepy and hungry, those two minutes make the whole thing worth it.
And every week, we end the service by everyone reciting the benediction: "May the amazing grace of the master Jesus Christ, the extravagant love of God, and the intimate friendship of the Holy Spirit be with us all."
That's why I go to church.
Friday, October 10, 2008
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
Sunday, October 5, 2008
Monday, September 29, 2008
I bought two hats the other night. I don't generally wear hats, as I feel they make me look like a man. But, I bought a cute, gray, wool hat. That one, I can see actually wearing. I plan on busting it out tomorrow night for the hockey game I am attending. It's wintery and fun and totally socially acceptable.
The other one is called a stingy fedora. Yes, I bought a fedora. Just call me Claudia Kishi. It's dark gray with a blue design around it. It's very cute and Ryan taught me how to tilt it just so.
I am writing this post because I need some pressure to wear the fedora. So, if you invite me anywhere that screams "fedora!" please let me know that I should wear it. (Or, if you think the fedora purchase was a huge mistake, then just never tell me to wear it.)
Saturday, September 27, 2008
So, Rachel was awarded the "I <3 Your Blog" award. And I was like, "Oh, I'm glad I didn't get that, so I don't have to do the survey." And then she gave it to me. But, since I am in her top seven blogs, and flattery gets you everywhere with me, I'll do it too.
But first, a story of flattery getting you everywhere. So, last year one of the kids in my afternoon class said, "Miss Fletcher, I like your hair." I said, "Oh, A+ for you!" So then all the kids started complimenting me. And I laughed and we went on with what we were doing. But from then on EVERYDAY as I stood at the door when they came in, like ten kids would give me compliments: "I like your hair, earrings, shoes, shirt, necklace, etc." Or "You look pretty today Miss Fletcher." It was totally my Daily Affirmation with period 4 time.
Okay, now the survey. You can only answer in one word:
1. Where is your cell phone? purse
2. Where is your significant other? lost
3. Your hair color? blonde
4. Your mother? funny
5. Your father? missed
6. Your favorite thing? socializing
7. Your dream last night? work
8. Your dream/goal? NBCT
9. The room you're in? Mine
10. Your hobby? reading
11. Your fear? kittens
12. Where do you want to be in 6 years? beach
13. Where were you last night? walking
14. What you're not? quiet
15. One of your wish-list items? Scrubs
16. Where you grew up? California
17. The last thing you did? parked
18. What are you wearing? clothes
19. Your TV? off
20 Your pet? nope
21. Your computer? empty :(
22. Your mood? Tranquil
23. Missing someone? Several
24. Your car? dirty
25. Something you're not wearing? shoes
26. Favorite store? Limited
27. Your summer? Fabulous
28. Love someone? indeed
29. Your favorite color? Impossible
30. When is the last time you laughed? Today
31. Last time you cried? Thursday
Here are the rules of the award:
* Display the award.
* Link back to the person who gave me the award. (Which involved me learning to link. I will use that more often now!)
* Nominate at least 7 other blogs.
* Put links to those blogs on mine.
* Leave a message on the blogs of the people I've nominated (which...I'm not doing!).
* Bask in the glory of my freshly fed and watered narcissism as I enjoy my award!
Here are my favorite blogs:
1. Erin-I get so excited when my bloglines account tells me Erin posted a new one, that I save it for last and look forward to it as I read everyone else's.
2. Natalie-I love the cute pictures of the kids, her stories, her depth, and feeling like I'm still connected to her!
3. Polly-see number 2.
4. Julie Martin-Who probably doesn't know I read her blog, but she is such a good writer and a wise woman. I love it. And the pictures of her dead plants.
5. Melanie-See 2 & 3. Same reasons.
6. Nicole-who doesn't love photography? And Nicole for that matter!
7. Adri-who lets me have a say in picking the name of her bike. And my vote won. :)
PS-Rachel, I also enjoy your blog, but I figured you already won the award, so I would spread the love around.
And thus ends my longest blog ever. Good night.
Thursday, September 25, 2008
Brandi Carlile songs:
"And I think the world of myself, but the world doesn't think much of me. As long as a day is full of time, there will always be room for your hand in mine."
This David Sedaris quote (among many others):
"Potential boyfriends could not smoke Merit cigarettes, own or wear a pair of cowboy boots, or eat anything labeled either 'lite' or 'heart smart.' Speech was important, and disqualifying phrases included: 'I can't find my nipple ring.' All street names had to be said in full, meaning no 'Fifty-ninth and Lex' and definitely no 'Mad Ave.' They couldn't drink more than I did, couldn't write poetry in notebooks and read it out loud to an audience of strangers, and couldn't use the words 'flick,' 'freebie,' 'cyberspace,' 'progressive,' or 'zeitgeist.' The could not consider the humans scalp an appropriate palette for self-expression, could not own a rainbow striped flag, and could not say they 'discovered' any shop or restaurant currently listed in the phone book. Age, race, and weight were unimportant. In terms of mutual interests, I figured we could spend the rest of our lives discussing how much we hated the aforementioned characteristics."
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
Being a teacher is strange, because it's not an office job-you need to be able to move around, be on your feet all day, and be around dirty, sweaty kids. But, you are also expected to dress somewhat professionally. I've heard two main theories on this:
1. Teachers want to be respected as professionals, just like any other dignified job, but then they don't dress the part. They show up in jeans and t-shirts and wonder why they're not taken seriously.
2. Teaching is a tough job with not too many perks-the fact that you can get away with more casual dress is a perk, so take advantage of it.
I think I fall somewhere in the middle. I don't wear t-shirts and try to look nice on the days I do wear jeans. But, I have been known to throw on my converse and a Carnegie Drill Team sweatshirt every couple of months. But, I always admire the female teachers who dress professionally everyday. In the same way I admire people who blow-dry their hair everyday: I'd like to be like them, but it's probably not going to happen.
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
I have notes galore for an essay on break-up music (inspired by This American Life, and of course, my life.) All were written on the back of my boarding pass while on the airplane from Minnesota. Coming soon to a blog near you.
Saturday, August 2, 2008
But, I like this one. :)
And, this one makes me smile...I love these roomies!
9:00ish-Get up and eat breakfast
10:00-Go for a walk on the beach with the dogs.
11:00-Lay out/swim in ocean/read/iPod
8:00-campfire, s'more it up
Lather, rinse, repeat. It was fabulous and relaxing. No TV, internet, or anything to do but hang out and have fun.
So, I am still learning to put pictures in here. Please don't judge my lack of captions or proper spacing!
1. The Collected Stories of Amy Hempel
This was actually a reread-I read it the first time all in one sitting (403 pages) while on the flight back from London. So, I was excited to read it again and savor it a little more (this time over two days). I think my favorite story is The Harvest, which breaks form to tell the reader how the narrator changes a story when it is written down. The ending of The Uninvited is perfect. And if you don't tear up at "In the Cemetery Where Al Jolson is Buried," then we might not be able to be friends anymore. I know this is not interesting unless you know these stories...so maybe you should go and read this book.
2. When You Are Engulfed in Flames by David Sedaris
Okay, I confess this is also a reread. I just read this one like a month ago too, but as the great literary critic Erin Fletcher says, "You know, he's funny." I love reading David Sedaris because I actually laugh out loud, garnering strange looks from those around me. I love the story about looking for dingos at the zoo.
3. Unless by Carol Shields
Becca brought this one, and I really enjoyed it. Basically it's about a woman whose daughter has become homeless. The narrator is a feminist writer, which is pretty much the author. There was some great stuff about reading in there-she responds to a woman who says, "I love reading cookbooks more than anything else" by saying, "Maybe if you read novels you'd be more interesting." This, however, is my favorite quote from the book:
"She had become conscious of the lifelong dialogue that goes on in a person's head, the longest conversation any of us has. Oh hello, it's me again. And again. The most interesting conversation we'll ever know and the most circular and repetitive and insane. Please, not that woman again! Doesn't she ever shut up? (This is why I read novels: so I can escape my own unrelenting monologue.)
Oh, that is so me.
4. Gilead by Marilynne Robinson
Erin gave me this one for Christmas and I could never get into it, until I started over in Mexico-then I couldn't put it down. It's written as a long, rambling letter from an elderly pastor to his young son, who he knows he will not live to see grow up. I was amazed at Ms. Robinson's ability to write from the point of view of a 76 year old man in the 1950's midwest. I kept forgetting that it wasn't a real letter. The novel has a slow, rambling feel, but it's beautifully written, and has some great thoughts on religion and spirituality, etc. Two of my favorite quotes:
"Adulthood is a wonderful thing, and brief. You must be sure to enjoy it while it lasts."
How great is that? You always hear that about childhood, but our adult lives are also fleeting-value your life.
"It is one of the best traits of good people that they love where they pity. And this is truer of women than of men. So they get themselves drawn into situations that are harmful to them. I have seen this happen many, many times. I have always had trouble finding a way to caution against it. Since it is, in a word, Christlike."
5. Lord of the Flies by William Golding
Okay, to be honest I'm only about halfway through this one. I brought it because I've never read it and I bought it like two years ago, hoping to cross it off the "Books Someone Should Have Made Me Read In School" list. I figured the lack of TV in Mexico might force me to read it. But, as Erin pointed out, the fact that I reread a book I just read a month ago before this one should tell you something. It's good. But it's so not my genre. And I kind of feel like I know where it's going. I think it's interesting and probably has good things to say about society. It would be good to discuss the symbolism of it in class. But, eh. I am going to try to finish it this weekend. Also, it's about a big group of thirteen year old boys left to their own devices. I can pretty much tell you how that's going to go, and I don't enjoy reading it any more than I like seeing it at work.
Thank you for indulging me, blog readers. Or skimmers, as the case may be for this one. Coming soon, my Mexico trip, with pictures!
Thursday, July 24, 2008
Then, I walked to the library (the one with the books, not the sweet coffee shop with free internet one block from my house). It was small, but I requested a bunch o' books from the main branch.
Then, Melanie and I went to Stroll & Savor. Basically, you buy tickets and then walk down 2nd street. All the restaurants have booths outside and you spend your tickets on various food. I had Indian, Greek, Japanese and Mexican food. I also had a cupcake, a crepe, and a diet coke. It was super fun. Everyone is walking around, people are out with their dogs. Good times. Then Lanie and I went and had a glass of wine at Vint's. It was super.
Also, every week they have movies on the beach. I am going to see Singing in the Rain on the 6th and Breakfast Club on the 12th. Anyone want to join?
So, in case it was unclear...I really like living in Long Beach. :)
Thursday, July 17, 2008
1. My cruise that I leave for TOMORROW!!!!!
2. Rosarito with the Rogers
3. Having a couch again
4. The Sound of Music Sing-a-long in September!!
5. San Diego with work people
6. Kerri coming home from her trip-I miss having a roommate.
7. Going to a Dodger game in August. I haven't purchased tickets, but that needs to happen. I am lagging this season.
8. Minnesota for Krista's wedding in August
9. DID I MENTION THE CRUISE STARTS TOMORROW?
I still need to blog about the Journey concert too. And I should post some pictures on this things at some point. Note to self.
Friday, July 4, 2008
There will be a 4th of July BBQ at our house next year. Mark your calendars kids. But for now, I am so-so-so-so happy that I live here. I have lived in five local cities in my life, and I feel like I have found the perfect fit.. This is where I could live the rest of my life and be happy. I have never loved a place that I live so much before. I'm home!
At the end, the instructor had us put our hands in a prayer position at our heads-to remind us to think loving thoughts; at our mouths-to remind us to speak words of compassion; and at our hearts to remind us to see the beauty and love that is in everything around us.
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
I remember thinking, "What is he talking about? I totally know how to relax. I'm not THAT high-strung."
After my first two days of vacation though, I am thinking he may have a point. Thus far I have:
*read two books
*done my laundry (no small feat)
*finished half of a three-unit online class
*met Krista at work for lunch
*bought gifts for various people
And, Shelley and I have plans to clean out my closet when we get home from It's A Grind, where I am working on the class. Now, it can definitely be argued that shopping, reading, and the TV watching I've also done is relaxing. That is certainly true. Reading David Sedaris can hardly be called stressful. But, the fact that I was bored at 11:00 this morning and decided to start my online summer classes on my second day of vacation is a bit telling.
Also, I am starting my National Boards in the fall. Which is a crapload of work. I got asked what made me decide to start that, and while the pay raise is an EXCELLENT motivation, I don't even think that's the real reason I'm doing it. I just have a need to be doing something all the time. Achieving something. Working toward something. There are definitely worse traits to possess. I mean, it does help me get a lot done. But I have been reflecting on this trait in the last year or so, when I realized that it is rare and bit extreme. Is it just a personality thing that I should work to its full advantage? Or should I analyze my need for achievement-perhaps it is reflective of some sort of issue I should work through?
I don't know. But I am going to go and work on that class some more.
Monday, June 23, 2008
a. Mary Hinds always has the BEST stories.
i. Janis Lukstein teaching tap dancing in her room.
ii. An unnamed AP doing yoga.
iii. The topless beach story.
b. The last day of school makes for the best parties
i. But with way less yelling this year.
ii. I recall a lot of high-fiving from me.
1. That’s probably not necessary, but is a sure sign I had a good time.
2. Kerri and I put together a bunch of Ikea furniture.
a. I actually like that there are no written directions, only pictures. I think the words would get too complicated. The pictures are pretty clear and they make it pretty hard to mess up.
i. Although I messed up on my file cabinet like four times.
b. If anyone needs an allen wrench, I got you covered.
c. Moving furniture upstairs that is in boxes is WAY easier than moving up actual furniture. I wish my bed was in an Ikea box.
3. I went to the beach
a. The beach is now only two blocks from my house.
b. I bought two types of sunscreen today
i. Faces=spf 70
1. I can’t believe a sweater didn’t pop out when I squeezed the tube of that stuff.
2. But it worked.
ii. Spray on=spf 50
1. Even if you are really albino, shouldn’t spf 50 do the trick, especially when you reapply it to your chest?
2. I am sunburned. ☹
a. I need to buy an umbrella.
4. I am going to bed now.
a. It’s hot.
b. My window fan, however, works wonders.
i. It is the wrong size for my new windows, but I think I shall still find a way to make it work.
5. Good night.
a. Good night, indeed.
Thursday, June 12, 2008
+actually got rid of about 25 books that I've either never read or didn't really like in the first place. (goodbye old math textbook and "I Gave Dating a Chance" by Jeramy Clark. That book was terrible.)
-I still have a kajabillion books to pack. I labeled one of my boxes "horribly heavy box of books."
+found my Everybody Duck CD from Hume Lake
-it doesn't have that one song I really like that I thought it did (at least not yet. It's playing while I pack/blog about packing while sitting on my bed).
+I have a couple bags of stuff for Goodwill
-I actually have to take said items to Goodwill. This, like so many other simple tasks, may be the death of me. Other chores in this same group include: addressing and mailing a letter, folding laundry, taking my car to the car wash, making a doctor's appointment, etc.
Can't we just skip to the part where all my stuff is in my new place and we have a housewarming party?
Sunday, June 8, 2008
The movie About a Boy is really good. I think, actually, even better than the book. It's a really good story about community and how people need each other. If I were a pastor, I would show a clip of it in my sermon.
I like church, especially Grace Brethren Long Beach.
I need to start packing. And go get a money order for my apartment. And bring in the garbage cans. And get things done other than sitting on the couch watching a movie I've seen a million times. So, adieu.
Wednesday, June 4, 2008
This is my way of telling you all that I am pregnant with twin girls. Or getting two puppies. Or that I am reading Anagrams and watching Across the Universe.
Sunday, June 1, 2008
I think the hardest part of it is that I am just a smidge controlling. And by just a smidge, I mean extremely. I like to have a plan, to know what is going to happen in my life. I always have a five-year-plan, just like Stalin (although with less emphasis on controlling Russia). And right now there are many unknown variables in my life. I'm not good at that. This morning at church Pastor Lou said that the need for control stems from fear. Fear that if you surrender control, things won't work out. That you won't be cared for or provided for. You won't get what you want and you won't be happy.
So what casts out fear? Perfect love. Perfect love enables you to trust that even when you relinquish control you will be provided for. That God cares for you so much that he will not hang you out to dry. Things don't always work out how you would plan or even in the ways that make you the most happy, but they work our according to his purpose. So, I need to trust that. And relinquish that control. But the vise grip I have on my life is hard to release. So, if anyone wants to speak truth into my life in regard to this issue, I'm all ears. (or eyes if it's via email/blog comment).
Wednesday, May 28, 2008
"Is there a secret world of knowledge that adults know, that gets passed on from one generation to the next, the way there is with children? I think not. I think your blurped out into the world, you get a few jumprope rhymes, and from there on you're on your own. Nobody tells you anything. Nobody shows you how."
"She insisted that she loved him and would go mad without him or at least have a hard time grocery shopping."
"You cannot be grateful without possessing a past. That is why children are incapable of gratitude and why night prayers and dinner graces are lost on them. 'Gobbles Mommy, Gobbles Grandpa...' George races through it. She has no reference points. As I get older the past widens and accumulates, all sloppy landlessness like a river, and as a result I have more clearly demarcated areas of gratitude. Things like ice cream or scenery or one good kiss become objects of a huge soulful thanks. Nothing is gobbled."
Sunday, May 25, 2008
BUT, even I cannot watch that much ANTM. After I've seen Nicole's horrified face when Tyra says they're "all going to LONDON!!!!!" like four hundred times, I'm done. I guess I'd rather see that than A Shot at Love with Tila Tequila, but still. Not to sound cliche, but how about some music videos? (I know, I know...it's been said.)
Friday, May 23, 2008
Anyway, the other night I dreamed that the yearbook distribution party was a total disaster. It was in this maze-like warehouse and the books were missing. Then, when I finally found our yearbooks, the pages were all out of order, there were pages I had never seen, missing images, really bad photos, etc. I was so upset and frustrated. And then I woke up and realized that I have about a month's worth of yearbook-themed dreams to look forward to. Awesome.
So, does everyone stress-dream, or is that just me? I wish I had re-occurring dreams about making out with Dave Grohl or something. That would be WAY better.
Saturday, May 17, 2008
Sunday, May 4, 2008
Wednesday, April 23, 2008
Anyway, since I have apparently developed a dependency to caffeine, I am going to avoid it for the next month or so. :( Which will be very difficult, as there is nothing quite like a cold Diet Coke to prepare me for my fourth period class. It's like the legal equivalent of a stiff drink.
I might need to go to a meeting.
Sunday, April 20, 2008
I took three students to the National High School Journalism Convention this weekend. I left with them Thursday after school and took them home Saturday night. The convention was in Anaheim, and logically it should have been a breeze compared to camp.
I was SO exhausted last night, I couldn't even handle it.
Don't get me wrong-the conference was GREAT. I would totally go again and I loved taking the girls. They had a great time, learned a ton about yearbook (as did I), and I definitely bonded with them. There is a certain brand of kid/adult who can get really excited about layout and font choice. We are of that odd group. I have a huge list of ideas for next year and can't wait to start the 2009 yearbook. We also went to Downtown Disney, which is pretty much designed for twelve year old girls. They tried on makeup at Sephora and took hundreds of pictures of themselves (literally). They went swimming at the motel pool. They giggled and jumped on the bed and ran around the room on Friday night. They got to meet some of the minor stars of Gossip Girl, which caused one of them to exclaim, "Ms. Fletcher this is like the best day ever!! You're the best teacher in the word!!!" It was a blast. But good lord, I was DONE.
I can't figure out the differences. Is it because I had to drive them back and forth? Because I was responsible for their itinerary and fun rather than a camp director?
Or is it, as I suspect, that I am just getting old?
Friday, April 11, 2008
Saturday, April 5, 2008
Thursday, April 3, 2008
Sunday, March 30, 2008
The fact that avocado, a vegetable, has fat in it is like a cruel joke. Because, of course, it is my favorite vegetable. It is also one of the most expensive items in the produce department. I can eat avocados the way some people eat chocolate. Or drink wine. Or breathe.
One time when my ex-boyfriend and I were out to dinner he pushed his plate over to mine and began to scoop the tomatoes, (my second favorite, after avocado) off of his salad and onto mine. I looked up, confused. "You don't like tomatoes?" We had been going out for several months, and I had a brief thought that this could be the end of things for us. I can't date a tomato-hater. He responded, "I do, but you like them more than me." This may have been the high point of our entire relationship, I think.
I love the feeling of having new clothes. Putting on a shirt that still has a tag on it, that has that crisp not washed and dried feel to it. Figuring out which jeans it looks best with, which necklace hits the right spot with the neckline. The newness of seeing yourself in it. It's like being a new person and having a fashion show all at once. It's shallow and petty and materialistic, but there's nothing like it.
Years and years ago, my sister and I decided to make a forbidden word. We are not allowed to say it or write it, ever. I can never remember how this came to be. Erin always does and reminds me when I ask her. It's not a special word, we just decided to ban it. The word is rare enough that it works; but it does pop up occasionally. And whenever I see it I am elated. There it is! But I can't say it! And I want to call my sister and tell her that someone used THE word! It's a little like how I felt about swear words when I was a kid. Except more excited and less likely to tell a teacher.
I hate mopping the floor the same way some people hate fascism.