Archive for December, 2008

8 reasons I won’t forget 2008

December 30, 2008

8. Good Friends
I say “friends” like I have a bunch. I don’t, really. I do need to make more. Just like every year, I’ve gained some new friends and lost some old ones. I really miss all my friends at my old work, KinderCare, like Rachelle and Sandra and Kelly. They were good people. I have kept many good, strong friendships like my friendship with Anisah, who’s getting married in March! (You go, girl!) It’s friendships like that that make me want more.

7. Turning 21
In November, I turned 21 which is a monumental day in anyone’s life. I can drink legally now! I had a drink on my 21st birthday (a cosmopolitan) which was disgusting. Then I had another one at my mom’s Christmas party, a margarita. The margarita was OK but halfway through it, I asked for a Coke. I can tell you I won’t become an alcoholic because I can never stomach a drink enough to get drunk! Or maybe I haven’t found my perfect drink yet. My mom did get a huge bottle of vodka during her gift exchange. 😉

6. Miami Dolphins
Ah, my Dolphins. For the first time since 2000, they are in the playoffs! I didn’t start getting interesting in football until about 10th grade (the 2003 season) and this is the first time I’ll be able to watch them in the playoffs (and appreciate it!). My first year, they were 10-6 but their division is scary good. Come on, we have the New England Patriots in our division. So, yes, I did a fist-pump and cheer when I heard Tom Brady went down and was out for the season. 🙂 We’ve had an insane season. We launched the WILDCAT! And now other teams are copying us. We’ve established the two runningback tandem that all successful teams are running with Ronnie Brown and Ricky Williams. We got a franchise QB in Chad Pennington. And Tony Sparano, our head coach, has to be the front runner for Coach of the Year! All in all, I’m proud to be a Phinatic!

5. Barack Obama/Voting
This year marked the first time I voted. Although I was old enough to vote in the small state election in 2006, I didn’t. But I knew how important this election was so I became an Obama fan. I am registered as a Republican but something about John McCain rubbed me the wrong way. And I especially hated his VP nomination of Sarah Palin. I’m all for women in power but this seemed like such a stupid choice on McCain’s part and made me question his abilities. And, unlike every other Obama supporter, I do not think he’s given us back HOPE. Guess what? Six months from now, we’ll probably still be fighting a war. We’ll probably still be in a crappy economy. And all you fans will end up hating him by the time his term is over. Trust me on this. So I just hope he can do some good. I don’t expect him to be Superman, though.

4. Change of Major
This has been the biggest event to happen to me in the past month. I was all set to graduate with my degree in Elementary Education but after a failed internship, I decided to completely switch my major. So I’m now focusing on journalism. And what’s really neat is that I was iffy on journalism because what I really want to do is write a book. And I kept going back and forth: Creative Writing or Journalism. So I was at the library the other day and looking for some books to read. And now I’m really interested in author biographies and it seemed that every one I picked up said something about the author being a journalist before attempting to write a novel. So I think this is where I need to be. I just hope it works out as certain roadblocks have been created recently. If not, I’ll settle for becoming a housewife. 🙂

3. My Nephew
Of course, one of the most monumental events of this year has been the birth of my sweet nephew. He turned 3 months old on Christmas and he is just a sweetheart. He’s getting so big and he’s so active! Unfortunately, as talked about in a previous blog entry, it’s very tough to actually find time to see him but I’m going to change that. I’m going to force ourselves to see him because it’s not fair to us – or him. He knows his maternal family like the back of his hand (well, actually, I don’t think he’s discovered his hands yet so bad example…) and he barely knows us. I may have to burn some bridges, but this has to stop.

2. Grandma
May turned out to be a terrible month for our whole family. We had a picnic for my grandma on May 4th and she ended up in the hospital the next day with what we discovered was a tumor. Then we received the terrible news that she had Stage IV Colon Cancer. It was terrifying, shocking, and saddening. But, throughout it all, I maintained a positive attitude. This was my grandma. There was no way she was going to let a little thing like cancer kill her. I knew she would survive it. And she has. In October, she had a PET Scan and we found out she was completely healed – a miracle. Her doctor said that it was indeed a miracle for her to be completely healed. She just finished her last round of chemo on Christmas Eve. She hasn’t been feeling her best lately but she’ll be back up to her old speed in no time! And we have to get some meat back on her bones! She’s just a little thing now. She’s smaller than me!

1. Minnie
I never, ever, in a million years thought I wouldn’t celebrate the new year with my best friend, Minnie. She was my entire world but we received the awful news in May that she had lymphoma and it was quite advanced. There was nothing we could do to save her. The doctor said we had at best a few months but her quality of life deteriorated dramatically and we made the extremely difficult decision to put her to sleep on June 8th, 2008. Minnie is now frolicking in the sunshine with her old boyfriend, Buford, and meeting new friends who think she is amazing and beautiful, just like she thinks she is! They are having a grand old time! And if Mom and I still talk if Minnie’s still with us…well, that’s not weird. Right?

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Why?

December 17, 2008

Stephany, why do you want to be a teacher?
Well, um, when I was in high school I took 3 of the pre-education courses to fill my 15 required hours and I really liked the classes so I decided to become a teacher.

Stephany, why do you want to be a writer?
Honestly, I can’t see myself going longer than a day without writing something – be it a blog entry, a character profile, or a story. Writing has been in my blood since I learned it. I’ve been creating stories and characters since I was 7 years old. I am constantly creating and recreating plots inside my head. To not write would feel like death to me.

And, someone please tell me why it took me 2 1/2 years to discover this?!

Oh, Christmas tree!

December 10, 2008

Ah, the joys of a fresh, real Christmas tree. I know some of you scaredy-cats go for a fake pre-lit Christmas tree. But, seriously, one-fourth of Christmas is the stress and anxiety that comes with taking a real Christmas tree and putting it in the stand and trying to get it to stand up (and straight, but that’s not really neccessary).

I am the biggest kid when it comes to Christmas. My brother and I both are. We love it. We used to try to stay up all night, waiting for Christmas morning to come. But he moved out 3 years ago so now it’s just Mom and me. And I insist on a real Christmas tree. There is nothing in the world like the smell of a Christmas tree when you come inside the house. You can’t get that smell with a fake one.

So we usually get our Christmas tree from Ken’s Christmas Trees and they work out good. But he is a little pricey and pretty far away. But he has a Christmas tree stand that is a thing of beauty. It looks like a regular stand but has a long pole up the middle of it. At Ken’s, they drilled a hole in the middle of the Christmas tree and all you have to do is slip it in the hole and voila! The tree is perfect. No screws or anything.

Unfortunately, this year we bought our tree at Target and they don’t drill holes there. Mark was with us so we figured we’d just get his drill and drill our own hole! Well, we had 4 hours to get it into water and Mark’s drill was dead and he needed to charge it. So we spent about 2 1/2 hours, waiting for it to charge and when it finally did, the drill wasn’t able to go very far into the tree.

So now we were at a crossroads. What to do? We decided we had to buy a regular stand. So we ventured off to Target again and bought the stand. Only one of the screws was made wrong and the bolt wouldn’t go on it right like the other bolts did. The bolt helped to hold the screw in place and without it, the screw had a mind of its own and wouldn’t stay straight.

Now it’s official freak out time.

The tree had to be in water and the stand was being stupid so we couldn’t get it upright. So, genius that I am, I came up with the solution to fill our first stand with water and just lean the tree against it for the time being. We’d come back in the morning.

Man oh man, what a night! Mom was really upset over it and her being upset caused me to be upset. It wasn’t a very fun situation on Saturday night. So what did we do? We went to Steak-N-Shake. We gorged. Would you like to know how many calories is in a double steakburger, French fries, a cup of chili, and a chocolate shake? Only 2,221! That’s it! Wow. Oh, and it only had NINETY-SEVEN grams of fat! Holy crap. They do have healthier options, but who wants to eat healthy when you’re stressed out and upset?

Luckily, our hero saved the day! He came on Sunday morning and within an hour got our tree standing up, straight, proud, and regal. It is a beauty of a tree. So we were so happy that he fixed it for us. He’s amazing. (HE would be my brother…)

So, now here is our beautiful tree. It has so much character, wouldn’t you say?

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We also decorated the house for Christmas!

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Mom loves the snowman theme. Her stocking is the first one, then Mark’s, and mine is on the bottom.

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Our little Christmas table, filled with a Snowman Christmas countdown, our very own fireplace, a church, and, most importantly, a candy dish filled with Christmas candy.