Understanding Laura

I am a crunchy oddball with too many ideas and too little time. Do you get me now?

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Yay me!

The picture on the left was taken in April of this year. I weighed 160 pounds and those are Brian's pants!

The picture on the right was taken in September at my niece's third birthday party. That's my youngest niece, Abbi. I weighed 146 pounds there.

Ultimately, this weight loss was to impress Brian. But, in losing and keeping off a total of 20 pounds, I have new respect for myself.

I've joined and RE-joined Weight Watchers so many times, it's laughable. But I've stuck to it this time. I may not go to meetings, but the plan is an integral part of my life.

It was all worth it in the end. The picture below is mine and Brian's reunion in Texas. I am a slim 137 pounds in that picture. I felt and still feel great! I am much more comfortable in my own skin. I'm just giving myself a pat on the back by publicly voicing the pride I have in my stick-to-itivity.

I just hope I don't screw it up too much this Thanksgiving!

Friday, November 18, 2005

Yin and Yang

I used to think that my sister and I were as opposite as could be.

Day and night.

Tall and short.
Obnoxious and reserved.

I'm beginning to see similarities that have always been there...I only became aware of them when I realized that we won't be seeing each other for a LONG time. Partly because Brian and I will likely be stationed in Alaska for a minimum of 12 months...mostly because she'll be leaving to Alabama on the 25th of this month.

I guess I never really thought about the one day that we'd be seperated. That day is fast becoming today. I assumed Tara would always be here to hang out with and tell secrets to. That even if I left, I could always come home and have a permanent sleep-over buddy. She's always willing to hang out with me. Even though there are times when we completely ignore each other, it's nice to know we're in the same room. Bonding, I suppose.

I didn't realize how hard this separation is going to hit me, until it hit me! And it's hard! I don't want to lose my baby sister! And we're both TERRIBLE at keeping in touch, so I'm sure it'll be YEARS before I find out that she got a rainbow tattoo on the back of her neck, or went skinny dipping with Orlando Bloom, or drank so much beer she passed out and woke up married to Cletus-The Slack-jawed Yokel... I want to be there for all her crazy goings-on.

We talk about basically everything under the sun with little-to-no shame, but I've never been able to tell her how much I love having her in my life. I love that no matter how long it's been since we talked last, we pick up like it's been only moments. And I love how she can be so accepting of differences of opinion. I never have to worry that a secret I share with her will make it past her lips to anyone else's ears. She's like a built-in best friend and I've taken her for granted.

It's a shame you always miss what you've lost and want what you can't have.

Hindsight is 20/20, or so I've heard.

Sunday, November 13, 2005


It's Saturday morning. I wake up to my cell phone ringing. It's my husband. We chat for a bit, all the while I am yawning and moving my jaw around in futile attempts to regain hearing in my right ear. It feels as though I've just dropped several thousand feet in elevation.

My ear feels all jammed up and I can't fight to the urge to "pop" my ears.

Popping hasn't happened about ten minutes into my conversation with Brian, so I mention it. He comes up with a few suggestions that I've already tried. I give them another try, but to no avail.

I end our conversation abruptly so I can call the doctor.

"It's not a big deal," I keep thinking.

Since I had just started a new medication to help with migraines, I convince myself that the loss of hearing was simply a side effect.

While waiting for the on-call doctor to page me back, a small amount of hearing returns. It sounds as though everyone is underwater.

After the doctor asks a few preliminary questions to rule out any immediate threat to my health, he refers me to an urgent care physician.

Long story short, my inner ear has a tube that is inflamed. This tube is used for draining my sinuses (?) and the inflammation has caused a backup of fluid. The doctor prescribes some anti-inflammatory pills for the loss of hearing and some anti-dizziness pills for the lack of balance.

The loss of hearing has disabled me from walking a straight line. Distraught, I call my boss to tell her all of this.

She gives me this "Who's gonna cover your shift?" attitude.

I tell her that I'll gladly call anyone on the roster who isn't scheduled today.

She cuts me off with "Everyone is scheduled today."

I pause, then ask, "What would you like me to do? I have a note excusing me from work. I'm not well."

She pauses and the silence seems eternal. Finally, a sigh followed by "I'll take care of it."

I try again to apologize and she says "I have to go, we're busy."

The line is silent.

I'm ashamed to say that I put up with a LOT of this kind of crap for very little $. Her making me feel guilty for staying home with a REAL illness just pisses me off.

I call the other manager I'm scheduled to work for that night and I leave a message with the same information.

I go home, take the pills I was prescribed and promptly fall asleep. When I wake up several hours later, I haven't heard from either manager.

I get all worked up thinking about calling my boss to tell her that my note excuses me from work both Saturday and Sunday.

No one with a clean attendance record should be AFRAID to call in sick.

I'm sick!! I need to rest! Not work!

The more I thought about it, the more I realized that they have always treated me like I was trying to play hookey. I don't play hookey! I can think of three times I was sick enough to call in. And TWO of those three times, the manager made me feel bad enough about it that I just went to work. I threw my health out the window and worked!! Just to avoid the old and tired guilt trip.

I'd decided I'd had enough.

I typed and printed a short and sweet resignation letter, gathered up my uniforms, and asked my brother to drive me to BK so I could drop them and the letter off.

About thirty minutes after I dropped off my stuff, I got a text message from my boss' boss. The text message simply said,


Nothing more. I text him back, saying, "What's that supposed to mean? I don't need you calling me names. Grow up."

Another half hour later, from the same man, I get a text saying "Who's this?"

I respond with "Laura. The person you just called a loser."

I haven't heard anything since and frankly don't care to.

How immature for a GROWN MAN of at LEAST 45 years to call names through a text message?

Good news is, I'm on the road to recovery. The underwater sound has changed to a high-pitched ringing. (I'm pretty sure this is a lateral move.) And now I'm recovering from my hurt feelings.

That text message carried more hate in it than a slap to the face.

The text-man is the father of a supervisor in a similar position who's last day went something like this: He stormed into the kitchen, marched back to the office, slammed his uniforms on the desk, said "No more Burger K*ng for Kenneth" and walked out...calmly. Maybe Texty McTexterson was just angry at his son for casting such a negative light on the family name. He took it out on me.

Or maybe he really does hate me for quitting so abruptly.

I'll never know because I don't think it's in my best interests to pursue the matter.

I'll recover.

Both my ego and my ear will get better. And for how much I care about his opinion, I'm sure my ego will recover much more quickly than my ear.

Saturday, November 12, 2005


Everyday, I wake up and say to myself,
"I can live without caffiene."


And everyday, like the addict I am, I find SOME way to get it into my system. Pills, soda, energy drinks, chocolate... I know where to get the goods.

It's the only way I feel half human! And believe me, society appreciates my falling off the bandwagon on a daily basis. The world has seen me sans caffiene and it ain't pretty.

That said, a rather annoying woman at work was going on and on about how "If you just cut out the soda, you'd lose ten pounds!"

What is it with me and attracting people who want to blab about their opinions on losing weight??? I happen to think my weight loss plan works for me! Are these people trying to tell me I need to reevaluate? That seems entirely absurd, but I can't think of another reason that these people (There are MORE than two, only two have annoyed me enough to post about it.) feel compelled to tell me what I need to change about my dieting habits.

I'm reading too much into her comments, I'm sure. Maybe I'm obsessed with how much I weigh or what I look like? Is that vibe oozing out of me? And people feel the need to correct the girl with the eating disorder? Save her before it's too late? Phooey!

It doesn't help that this woman possesses a personality about ten times as abrasive as mine. I'm definitely above average on the curve chart of abrasiveness. I'm not the easiest person to get along with. I'll openly admit that. I just don't dish out the same tolerance for annoying qualities that I expect for my own.

I quit my job. For the second time.

And for the second time, I've resended my notice! Will I ever leave? This job sucks me into it's swirling portal of pain! And I let it!

This time around I was SURE that when I quit, I really was going to have a last day.

What happens when we move to Alaska? Am I going to commute? That's one bitch of a commute! And hardly worth the wages I receive.

One day I'll get up the nerve to completetly depend on my husband's income. I think I'm just so scared of taking that leap into unemployment. I can't remember a time when I didn't provide my own source of income.

Who hasn't been sitting neighbor children since they were 11?

And it's not that I like my job. I tolerate it...on good days...well, really only on payday. But not working seems so foreign!

What would I do with my time? Has my addiction spread? Do I work to fulfill the same need that caffiene fills for me? I wonder if having a job makes me feel half human...

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Every village has one

I'm at the gym, I'm on an elliptical trainer, I set the timer for 35 minutes.

I've been on for 4 minutes when an older gentleman approaches me. I politely remove my headphones, expecting a quick comment on the weather or some such other quip, but I have another thing coming.

I have 31 minutes left on my timer when this guy starts talking about fat cells, and cholesterol, and calories, and weight loss plans, and muscle, and on and on!!!

Thirty one minutes later, I'm getting off the machine while he continues to droan on about how long he likes to workout for and how I need more calories because I'm in shape and a whole bunch of useless crap. At this point, I'm more than peeved because I've missed 31 precious minutes with Betty (My new iPod!).

I continue to smile and politely respond in monosyllables. While I do my post-workout stretches, I keep saying "Well, it was nice talking to you (insert name here.) I think I'll go work on my calves now." I was hoping to get the point across that I was finished shooting the breeze with him and at the same time direct him toward the track so I could make a break for the weight room.

It works! Success! Finally!

Moments later, I'm happily settled down with Betty on a yoga mat, doing crunches. I glance up at the ceiling and there he is!!! He just picks up where he left off!! He continues to talk even though it's clear that Betty and I are in a groove. Once more, my accepting-of-the-social-outcasts gene kicks in and I REMOVE MY HEADPHONES! Will I never learn?

Calories, fat count, fiber, carbohydrates, blah blah blah blah BLAH!!!

And this is the part I'm ashamed of, I point at Betty and say "Ok (insert name), that's nice."

Betty and I are reunited.

In my defense, I tried to politely bow my way out the conversation more than once!

I know, I'm terribly rude. But he was weird and old and wouldn't stop talking!

And I'm not the only one who's space has been violated! Apparently everyone has had a run-in at one point or another with talks-for-inappropriate-amounts-of-time-about-nothing-of-consequence guy.

Poor guy. I'm sure he's just lonely, but I go to the gym to workout, not to hear lectures! Phaw!

The end

Weight Loss Count: 17.0 lbs.
Inches Lost: 11.75

Monday, November 07, 2005

10 to 1 -Them

Boy howdy, do we suck?! We lost, which is not news at all. Simply a statement of the obvious.

Soccer, soccer. I love the exercise. It's definitely not MY sport. I'm a basketball kind of girl. Consequently, I try to use my hands. Which is a BIG no no in soccer unless you're the goalie. I've never been the goalie. Something about chilling in the same area while people kick a ball at you doesn't sit right with me.

I've been playing for about a month now. I'm part of a recreational co-ed 18+ team. I think I'm the only one not in their ward. It's not a ward sport, simply that they are all from the same ward and decided to sign up for a soccer team to help a woman who has developed cancer. Girls willing to play this vicious sport are few and far between, so I was invited to join the team.

I know the ring leader and his wife from work. They're cool people. As jack-mormon as they come. Our beliefs don't get in the way of our playing peacefully. But they do have a lot of questions for me.

They can't understand how someone who is not even the slightest bit religious can have such high standards of morality and loyalty. They seem to be under the misconception that non-believers go around sleeping with anything that moves and drinking anything that provides an intoxicating feeling. I do neither of these things and thus the questions are spawned.

As far as the iPod ordering goes, the good people of UPS will be delivering my baby tomorrow!! I'm so excited I might stay awake all night just to listen for the doorbell so there's no chance I'll miss them and have to go pick it up.

I love UPS' signature policy because it ensures no one else will get my new toy, but I hate that our doorbell is quieter than a mouse fart and you have to be within a ten-foot radius to hear it. My room is downstairs... Hmmm... I suppose I could doze on the couch while I wait for my precious.

I still haven't picked out a name. As you can see, I'll be dressing her up in pretty pink. But I'm torn between Georgia and Brazen Hussy. Choices...choices. If anyone has an alternative, I'm open to suggestions.

I've decided to post my weight loss accomplishments to help me stay motivated. I've been on Weight Watchers since May of 2004. I've joined four or five times on and off. I've recently rejoined and since have lost 3.6 pounds.

That was in my first week! I've been flying solo on their plan since April, it was only last week that I started attending meetings.

Below are my loss numbers since April 2005. Publishing my stats will keep me in line. Just one more source to answer to.

Good luck EK on your recent embarkment of WW!

Weight Loss Count: 15.2 lbs.
Inches Lost: 11.75


I got my new iPod skin in the mail today. I bought it off eBay. My seller described this skin as "new." I just have to say, it smells like pickles! What's that about?!? And it surely is NOT new. It's all grimy like it's been handled on more than a handful of occasions! I was a bit peeved.

For the record, I still would have bought it if I knew it was used. But it sucks having purchased an item because of the description only to receive an item that does not match that description! I foresee a neutral feedback in my seller's future.

Whew! Now that rant is over!

I got my first "stranger comment!" I'm so excited! I love EK, but this blog was starting to feel like a letter to Em everyday. :)

I think that comment makes me an official blog posting fool, as EK would say.

I'm playing soccer tonight. I'm fairly excited. I paid fifty bucks for about ten to fifteen games. Most likely ten games because we suck too much to make it to the playoffs. But, my manager has scheduled me to work on most of the nights the games are. Since I want her to work with my school schedule, I'm playing nice and not putting up a fuss. I'll just miss the games. I also want two weeks off at Christmas, so I'm making my time-off requests scarce to decrease my chances of having to quit just to have Christmas break off.

So, for all you strangers out there, who likely also blog, maybe you can assist me. I want to be able to put a picture in the MIDDLE of my post, not just at the top. Any suggestions? Or are my expectations a little too high?

EK, you're welcome to respond to this dilemma if you have a solution.

Thanks for reading!

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Inspired by Emily, Created by Laura

Those who know me, would easily agree that I possess very few creative abilities.
This particular scrapbook page was inspired by Emily.
All I did to accomplish this above average expression of creativity was think of Emily. I'd ask myself "Would Emily do that? What color would Emily choose for this page? How crooked do you think she'd lay that little scrap of turquoise?" And it was effortless.

This may look like an amateur's work, but compare it to scrapbook pages of the past.

Ouch, I know.

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Sister Power!

I drove to Tooele today to visit my family. It's about a 45 minute drive. I love seeing my family, but sometimes that drive makes me SO tired. Especially since a good portion of that drive goes right through un-developed desert land.

My little sister (right) is being a typical teen. I actually headed out there to lend my mom moral support. It appears I am the only person in Tara's life that she doesn't lash out at. Sister bond? Who knows. She's being pretty mean to our mom and mean to one guy that really had an interest in her well-being. He even encouraged her to go back to school. And she listened to him!

She broke up with this awesome guy because "He was too clingy." When, in all reality, what it came down to was that she was scared of how real it was.

Most of her past relationships were only skin deep. Once either she or the guy she was with had had their fill, the relationship ended. Usually with one stepping out on the other.

This guy truly cared about her and she interpreted that as being clingy.

Poor guy. He never stood a chance.

I just hope this stuff is all temporary. Like her fetish with Britney Spears.

I'm thinking of my little sis because I got my navel pierced today. I've always been jelaous of Tara's ability to throw caution to the wind. I didn't do anything as drastic or as permanent as I think Tara would were she her own guardian, but I made my own bold move. It was empowering!

And I love my piercing! The beauty of it is that if I grow out of this "I'm me, take it or leave it" phase, all I have to do is take out the jewelry and *presto change-o* I'm back to normal.

And if I happen to love it until I die, yay for me. That's fifty bucks well spent.


On the way to Mississippi, Brian mistakenly emptied his pockets of starburst wrappers and his wedding band. He only got his replacement wedding band in the mail yesterday.

Up until then, people assumed he was delusional and the wife he had described was only fictionally pining for him in Utah.

This lead to the miscommunication between Brian and, previously mentioned, Girl.

Brian has informed me that he has retracted the permission given to Girl to call him. And once Girl saw said wedding band, she immediately backed off.

Long story short, Brian is largely acknowledged as a sane person and my existence was confirmed by his lovingly packaged ironing board.

It feels fantastic to be real!

Thursday, November 03, 2005


My best friend, EK, recommended blogging as a healthy form of therapy. I can honestly say that this outlet has become my journal. No more hand cramps from writing into the wee hours of the morning. No more wondering how I'm ever going to fit it all in, in the exact manner I meant it.

If only I could quell the constant urge to push my edit button. I just need to realize that EK is the only person reading my blog. And even if some stranger happens to stumble upon my blog and take a sudden interest, why should I care if they're offended or bored at what I have to say? This is my therapy! Damnit!

With that said, thanks for reading. :)

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

How do you justify...

..taking a girl's phone number when you're married?!?!?

Because my husband has gone far beyond the standard definition of loyal, I'm not freaking out as badly as most. The only thing I can think is that he is naieve. I firmly believe he thought this girl was just looking for a friend. Not a bed buddy. But honestly, who does that?? He hasn't dated in four years, could he really be THAT rusty?

Girl-"What's your number?" Brian-"Oh, I'm married." Girl-"That's okay!" "Brian-"Oh...okay. (insert moment of stupidity in giving out his number)" Girl-"Want mine?" Brian-"Sure." Girl-"We can hang out sometime." As a woman, does this not scream *I want hot married-man lovin'!*?

Now, I know Brian had no ill-intentions. He told this story like he was all excited to have a friend. He was a little perky that other women find him interesting besides myself, but that's to be expected. When you're married, that feeling of *I'm so sexy* tends to fade. It's flattering to be approached by a person other than your spouse. But giving that other person your NUMBER???

I know he's lonely, but if he thought this was something I'd be angry about, he wouldn't have told me in such a "this is how my day went" kind of way. Unless he's looking for me to come to his defense and become all possessive... Did I screw it up in telling him I'm okay with him having friends to go to bars with...? Just not okay with him conversing with girls on his cell phone...using OUR minutes!

I have never been here.

I trust Brian..I do NOT trust Girl.