work, blood, other work, Blue Apron & other stuff

The first ‘work’ was therapy. I told my therapist that as I was sitting in the waiting room, it occurred to me that between sessions, I don’t often think about what we talk about. It’s so much easier to not. I know that’s why I quit going to therapy the first time. I didn’t want to do the work. My opinion about going to therapy has changed drastically over the years. I used to think it showed weakness. But that’s not true. It’s for people who need an objective ear, to help put things in perspective. Maybe I used to think it was easier to find perspective, or I did what many people do, just not think about it. Anyway, it was a good session.

While I was there, I remembered that the dermatologist (did I mention that I got a wee bit of vasculitis last month? I went straight for the steroids this time. All good!) had ordered some blood work, so I walked down to the lab. The phlebotomist said she needed more paper for the printer to print out all the labs I needed (!). I was surprised because I thought I remembered only seeing a couple things that were needed. I also had to do a urine sample. There’s just nothing good about doing that. Anyway, then she took about 8 vials of blood for a variety of tests. Okay then.

Off to work work. It was fine. Toward the end of the day, I was working on something and getting very confused and frustrated, so I called it a day. When I got home, waiting on the porch was a box from Blue Apron. I had actually forgotten to cancel the order for this week, but it’s okay because all of the recipes sounded good. I talked with Han for a while, then it was to the kitchen!

Tonight’s recipe was for seared pork with sauteed spinach and smashed potatoes. It was tasty. I had forgotten, though, that the portions are small. I mean, they’re probably exactly how much we’re supposed to have, but it’s not much. Anyway, it came out very well, and I think I would make it again on my own. The flavor combos of everything went perfectly together.

Tomorrow night, D is having a church group here at the house, so Han and I will get take out and let her have the run of the place. Thursday, I’ll probably make another Blue Apron meal: turkey steam buns w/ quick cucumber radish kimchi. The steam buns should be good, but I am not a fan of pickled stuff so I don’t know about the kimchi (plus cucumber, yuck!)

The last meal I’ll probably make this weekend, and I’m most excited about it: fresh fettuccine pasta w/ sugar snap peas & arugula pesto. Yum!

In tennis news, some quarterfinal matches were played, and Federer is out (good riddance you smug Swiss!) thanks to countryman, Stan Wawrinka, who advanced in three sets. Also through is Jo-Willie Tsonga, who I really like. The other two men’s quarterfinal matches should be awesome: Rafa vs Djokovic and Murray against Ferrer. Rafa is king of clay, but Novak has been great. I’d like to see Ferrer beat Murray. For the women, through to the semifinals is Ana Ivanovic and Safarova. Tomorrow, it’s my fav, Serena, who’s had a rough time getting this far, against Errani and two players I’ve never heard of: Bacsinszky (Swiss) against Van Uytvanck (Belgian).

I also wanted to mention some movies I want to see that are coming out soon. Part of the fun of going to the movies is seeing the trailers. I know that you can look them up online, but it doesn’t have the same impact. Here’s a brief list of movies I’d probably go to the theater to see (in no particular order) from commercials I’ve seen (I’m sure I’ll find others!):

1. Spy – I heart Melissa McCarthy
2. Jurassic World – see yesterday’s post
3. Inside Out – more Disney magic, plus Amy Poehler!
4. Trainwreck – Amy Schumer can do no wrong, plus Bill Hader!
5. Love & Mercy – biopic of Brian Wilson

Okay, that’s all I got tonight!

calling on my word

What have I been doing the past week? In a word: work. Han left for a mini-tour in NoCal with Flan on Wednesday night. On Tuesday night, we were going to have stuffed pork chops. I took the chops out of the freezer on Monday evening and put them in the fridge. On Tuesday night, even in the fridge they were still frozen. 😦 We brought something in and just hung out.

But then on Wednesday night? After he left? I worked. ‘Til midnight or so. And Thursday night? I also worked ’til about 12:30am. How could there possibly be that much stuff to do? It’s amazing when there’s no one to give it to how much you realize there is to do. Plus, I’m pretty anal when it comes to details so I’m checking and responding on every little thing.

Friday night, I fell asleep on the couch around 9 pm (shocking). So I puttered my way to bed. I fell asleep and then? 2 am – wide awake. ‘Til about 5:30 am. I watched a couple shows, looked at Facebook. Gah.

The thing though, all these nights, I’ve been kept company by the Australian Open. That’s right, tennis is back! It’s been so exciting! I’m especially happy that Venus is through to the quarters. Such an inspiration! Plus, Federer is out, and tonight Nadal got knocked out, too. Crazy!

Saturday morning I had acupuncture, which is truly a miracle. After that, I went to my favorite taco shop, El Zarape, for a shrimp burrito. I brought it home and ate. I watched several movies from various points in their stories. When one finished, I found another one that was in progress and watched it until the end, etc. And I worked. I’d take little breaks here and there, but mostly, I was working.

On Sunday, I never got out of my pajamas. And I worked, and pretty much repeated what I’d done on Saturday. While it wasn’t terrible, it wasn’t the most sublime either. Plus my sleeping issues continue.

Today, I physically went to work (not in my pajamas :). Things are really picking up. I do my first interview tomorrow to fill the position on my team. We have an onboarding meeting with a new vendor. Oh yeah, plus all the stuff to do.

I made a point to not bring my laptop home tonight though I could have. I wanted an evening to just sit or whatever. I did have some time with the kitties. Only 2 today. A returning kitty who is kind of a shit and a new guy who was the sweetest thing. I swear, I think about stopping my volunteering up there because it doesn’t really seem like I help them that much, but then today, I was petting that sweet cat and everything else just melted away for a few moments. It’s worth it, even if it is just for that 15 minutes of meltiness.

Han’s tour ended last night, but he took this day to drive down the coast and just have a day to himself. I’m glad he did. He texted me to say he’d hung out in Big Sur, walking, playing guitar, and writing, and he was going to stay tonight in San Luis Obisop. Good for him.

After the kitties, I came home and watched some tennis. I went grocery shopping and had dinner. As I’ve moved through my evening, my word kept echoing in my head: ease. I must keep this word with me. I have to let it work its magic. I have to believe in it. To keep me centered, focused, and grounded.

mid-month check-in

I meant to write last weekend, but I got sidetracked by my insides. Let’s pick-up where I left off.

On Sunday, 1/5, I did something I haven’t done in a long time. I went to a movie. By myself. I saw “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty.” I haven’t heard much about it since the onslaught of advertising when it first came out, but I thoroughly enjoyed it. I think Ben Stiller is handsome and charming. He comes into his own in this movie. Plus, Kristen Wiig is adorable. And the movie itself was beautiful. As with most movies, you have to buy into it in order to get swept away with it, and I did. Even as I knew it was happening, I decided to let myself.

On Monday, 1/6, after a tough day at work, I went to the Cattery and was immediately loved on by 2 kittens that just curled up on either side of my neck and purred and slept. That was heavenly.

On Tuesday, 1/7, I made a tri-tip that was really tasty. I don’t really remember much happening on Wednesday or Thursday.

On Friday, I transported D and her friend to church in Carlsbad and headed north to see the folks. We had Panera for dinner and all was well. On Saturday, Dad was sick. He was in bed all day, and I barely saw him. Poor guy. Mom & I had lunch at G Burger, which was tasty and that night she made breaded pork. On Sunday, Dad was feeling better. We had breakfast, and I came home to watch the Chargers lose to Denver (so close!) Then Han & I brought some food in and watched the Golden Globes (yay Cate Blanchett!) The surprise winners for me were Andy Samberg and Brooklyn 999 or whatever it’s called. We tried that show and thought it was terrible. But, who knows? Good for all those SNL alum!

On Monday, I was trying to get myself right. It was the 13th day of January, and I had been reviewing the goals I’d made for myself. I had bought a yummy juice that boasted 32% of your daily recommended fiber. I’d had one before, and it was good. I went to work. Drank my juice and  had my Special K protein bar (as opposed to my usual mocha and sausage sandwich or ham & cheese croissant). Around 10:30 am, I started feeling poorly. I’ll spare you the details, but after several trips to the restroom and laying on the floor of my office for a while, I went home. Once there, I cried. I was in so much abdominal pain. Han was extremely kind. I took a Vicodin and went to sleep.

Later that evening, Mom called to say she had been sick on Sunday night, just like Dad had. When I told her I was also sick (minus vomiting), we couldn’t help but think it was a coincidence. She was feeling better by Monday evening so I was hoping by the next day, I’d feel better, too.

And I did. Tuesday, I went into work. I went back to my usual breakfast fare having feared that I loaded too much fiber into my body, paired with what may have been food poisoning. For lunch, I had buttered noodles and cooked veggies. Very mild. That evening, I went to a poetry reading which was fine, nothing spectacular. I had some hummus and a mocha.

By Wednesday, I still felt okay. Usual breakfast. Mid-day, things went bad again. Discomfort throughout the rest of the day, multiple trips to the restroom and dull pain progressing the rest of the day. Diet 7-Up only that night.

Thursday, I stayed home still in pain, though not as bad as the day before. I made a doctor appointment for Friday. I had water and saltines. For dinner, some noodles with butter & parmesan.

Today, I went back to work. Had saltines and water. At the doctor, I saw a new guy because my regular doctor wasn’t there. He was kind and responsive. He prescribed some antibiotics for diverticulitis, though he’s not sure that’s what it was. To check for food poisoning, he wants me to provide a sample (yikes). But I just called and the lab isn’t open until Tuesday. Great. He did say to increase what I was eating, said to have yogurt. He also gave me referrals to a nutritionist, podiatrist, and dermatologist. So tomorrow, I’ll go and get my prescriptions filled and buy some yogurt, then later next week, I’ll call for those appointments.

Tonight, Han has a gig. He thought it best that I stay home and I had to agree. I’ve spent the evening catching up on my shows from the week (Community, Parks and Recreation, Top Chef, Parenthood). I had more noodles with butter and parmesan and more water. Now I’ve got “Under the Tuscan Sun” on. And I don’t even feel guilty about it.

Oh, one more thing. The Australian Open is happening right now, too. And it is hot down under. I haven’t been following it much what with the time difference and the pain.

looking forward to fall

It’s still been hot around these parts, per usual. But we are officially one week from the beginning of fall, and I’m looking forward to the new season. This morning was extremely gorgeous. Sunny and cool. Yesterday, it was foggy and when it burned off, it was hot. I was volunteering with work, and I chose to help clean up a large canyon near Balboa Park. They gave us one of those pickers and a bag. It was surprisingly pretty clean already, but I still found some stuff. One of the rangers told us that if we found a homeless camp and they weren’t there to take their stuff. Um, no. I did find a pillow, blanket, and tarp, and left it right where it was. That person is having a hard enough time, they at least need to have a pillow! I was smart for once and took my iPod, so I was happily listening to music as I walked the trail. My calves are hurting a bit today (that canyon is steep), but it was a great way to spend the morning.

Last night, the Acoustic Duo had a house concert that went really well. I stayed home and talked to my parents on the phone and fell asleep on the couch 🙂 Today, I went to the grocery store (good news, my local Fresh & Easy is staying open and is staying a Fresh & Easy!). Han & I hung out some, then I made some Italian sausage meatballs and had football on. He left a little later in the afternoon and I watched reality shows I don’t dare admit to watching and later made dinner.

It’s hard to believe that it’s already been 2 weeks since my dear sister was here. Well, actually we were still in LM 2 weeks ago. We had a great visit. She wrote about our wonderful Tuesday here. But it was all good (she wrote about the whole time, but Tuesday was a supreme day). I picked her up on Friday and promptly whisked us to Ocean Beach where we dined on the patio at Shades. I had crab cakes with a side of asparagus. She had fish & chips also with asparagus. We also had a couple tasty beers. After that, we went to Extraordinary Desserts to get some cake slices to take up to our folks. Then we headed to LM. There we quickly, easily, slipped into a comfort that is only possible at Mom & Dad’s house. It’s awesome. Even if me, Mom & Sandy are playing independently on our phones and Dad’s watching TV or petting the dog, we’re all there together. There’s no judgment, we’re just happy to be there. Comfort is the best way to describe it.

On Saturday, Sandy & I took Dad to dialysis, stopped for donuts and went home. For lunch, it was El Cholo. I had the filet mignon tacos which Sandy swears by and she was right. They were delicious. After lunch, we hung at home for a bit until it was time to get Dad. After that, Sandy & I went to the grocery store. For dinner that night, it was a simple ham & cheese sandwich on toasted rosemary bread with salad and potato chips. Yum!

Sunday means big breakfast: waffles & bacon. Plus bellinis! We didn’t have much on the schedule that day that I can recall. The US Open was on so I was watching that. For linner, we had barbecued steak, potatoes, green beans, & garlic mayo. So delicious. I know that I always end up talking about food when I talk about going up to LM, but that’s kind of the social event 🙂

On Monday, Sandy & I went to Polly’s to get cinnamon rolls. Oh my god, these are the perfect cinnamon rolls: big, soft, full of frosting. Yum. I should mention other things we did: we hung out outside in the cool mornings and evenings, played with Lulu, watched the US Open, chatted, and basically enjoyed each other’s company. It was the original Wanns 🙂

Monday afternoon, Sandy & I hit the road. I decided to go down the coast. Although it was foggy most of the way, she was still able to get some good photos, plus the sound and smell of the ocean is never bad. By the time we got to my house, the party was in full swing! Han had gone to our local meat market and created a feast. Calman & Becky and Cathryn & Jonny were here already and all was well. There were drinks and great food, good friends, and my sister! After the food, it was time for Han & Cathryn to do their radio show. Sandy & I listened in for a bit. She liked seeing how it all came together. Then it was time to take her to her hotel, a Holiday Inn Express that’s close by my house.

On Tuesday, I picked her up and brought her back to my house. We’d decided to have lunch and go to a movie. I know, pretty basic stuff, but it was the company that made it special. First she got to meet Flan, who was here at the house to work on his record. Then we headed back up the coast to Del Mar and the lovely little Las Olas Mexican restaurant. Super delicious. We had margaritas, chips & salsa, and some amazing food. I had chicken & sour cream enchiladas. She had a combo with pork, beef, and chicken. After a leisurely lunch, we crossed the street and were on the beach. Yep! We walked down to the water and dipped our feet in. It was cold to start but you got used to it. We chatted about various things. It was awesome. Then we went to the movie. But not just any regular cinema. We went to Cinepolis. Reclining leather seats, wait service if you want it, fancy food and drinks. Well worth the additional cost. We saw “Blue Jasmine.” I liked it, mostly because Cate Blanchett was riveting. After the movie, we stopped at Champagne Bakery for a little treat. It shouldn’t get much better than that, but it does. We went back to my house and drank a beer in my backyard. The temp had cooled a bit and it was perfect. Then it was time to go to the ballgame! Giants vs. Padres, field level seats on the third base side. AND after the 7th inning stretch as they played “Twist and Shout,” there were our grinning mugs up on the Jumbotron as we boogied. Too much! After the game (Padres win!), we stopped at Lolita’s to say hi to Coach Kentera and Randy Jones while they did the post-game show. Such a remarkable day. I took her back to her hotel after that and we sadly said goodbye, though I’m proud to say that neither of us cried, though I was pretty darn close. I love my ta-ta!

Then it was back to work 😦 Nothing much to report on there. Han left for a couple dates in the midwest on Friday so I had the weekend to myself. I went to acupuncture on Saturday and that was about the extent of my outings. I don’t really recall much else, other than cleaning up around the house, watching US Open, buying some curtains (which we’re changing out). He got back on Monday. Then the work week, and now we’re here! And now it’s time for bed!

summer is here

I don’t know why people get so surprised. Summertime heat always hits San Diego in August & September. It’s hot, humid, and heavy. Thunderclouds billow and threaten but never come through.

I am beyond excited because tomorrow my sister comes to visit. Last year at this time, I went to visit her in Salt Lake to help her as she recovered from her knee surgery. I don’t remember the last time she was in San Diego. She’ll fly in to SD, then we’ll drive up to LM to hang with the folks for the weekend. Then we’ll come back here for Monday afternoon through Tuesday night. Yay!

It’s US Open time 🙂 It’s Labor Day. It’s all good.

Since I last wrote, there’s been some fun. Han & I got tickets to see Willie Nelson courtesy of Mickey Raphael who played harmonica on Flan’s record. Flan asked him to put us on the guest list, and he did! The show was at Humphrey’s, and it was a beautiful night. Willie is 80 years old, but he is still doing his thing. His guitar playing isn’t as sharp as it once was, and he has to adjust the notes to allow his voice to do it, but man, to hear songs like “Help Me Make it Through the Night,” “Crazy,” “Good Hearted Woman,” “Always on My Mind,” and “On the Road Again,” plus a host of Hank Williams covers, songs from Teatro, plus new songs mixed in with classics such as his ending “Will the Circle Be Unbroken” which led into “Roll Me Up and Smoke Me When I Die.” It was awesome. Sadly, though, our dreams of being invited on Willie’s bus didn’t come true. Maybe next time!

Another things was D turned 16! We went out to dinner for Italian with her mom, grandma, and 2 of her friends. She was gifted with a car for her birthday. She has her learners permit, and will have her license in January. Wow. She’ll start school soon, her junior year.

That weekend (8/9-11), my dear friend Barbara was in town to do her CD release show for her 3rd solo record (recorded with Han). We went to dinner in OB on Friday, which was awesome. On Saturday night, she had her house concert. This venue is spectacular with an amazing view of the Pacific. Then on Sunday, it was back to OB for a more casual afternoon show at a local bar. Lots of friends came out and played some songs and hung out. It was really wonderful to see her. She’s doing her CD release in Austin in September, and Han is going out for that. They’ll have a blast!

The next week was pretty mellow. There was a day in there when I simply had to completely check out. I was really tired. I took the day off, and slept til 2 pm. I was up for a few hours, then went to bed at 9 pm and slept ’til the morning. I needed that. The weekend took me up to LM to hang with Mom & Dad which was super relaxing.

On Monday, August 19, Han was part of a show at the Lowell Davies outdoor Shakespeare theatre in Balboa Park, It was a tribute to Jeff Buckley. There were several amazing artists, several friends (many of whom were one and the same). It was wonderful. Han killed. He did “Conversations with the Moon,” then Buckley’s “The Last Goodbye,” then Dylan’s “I Shall Be Released.” The show was remarkable, the venue stupendous. It was a fabulous night!

On Tuesday, I went to Rebecca’s for their open reading which was fun. My friend, Lindsay, couldn’t make it, but I didn’t want that to stop me from going. I still enjoyed it. And on Wednesday, I went to Upstart Crow in Seaport Village for that open reading. I absolutely love that bookstore. It’s so cool.

I don’t remember what happened on Thursday, but on Friday, I went to a local coffee shop, Bay Park Coffee, and did some writing while Han was at a rehearsal. That felt really good. The coffee shop was super cute. I’ll definitely go back.

On Saturday, I had acupuncture (divine), then Han & I went to Liberty Station where he was performing as part of ArtWalk. It was a lovely day, and Liberty Station is the new happening place in town. It’s good for big events, but there’s also restaurants, grocery stores, and that’s where the new San Diego Writers Ink is located. It’s awesome. The gig was great, and it was nice to be outside in the sun. That night, Acoustic Duo had a house concert right near our house, which was convenient. I hadn’t been to a show in a while, and it was nice to hear them again. And the audience loved it!

On Sunday, we watched the Little League World Series. San Diego’s own Eastlake All-Stars represented the West all the way and won the US Championship. In the WS finals, they were up against Japan. It was a good game, but Japan prevailed. Still, US Champs is nothing to sneeze at. Those kids did good!

This past Monday, 8/26, Han & I went to dinner (Banbu Sushi – yum!) with Cathryn & Jonny then decided to go with them to see Heart. Totally random, right? I used the hashtag SummerofOldRockStarsConcerts on a post on Facebook. Ann Wilson is 63, but she can still sing. It was an awesome show actually. You don’t realize how many songs you know. “Barracuda,” “Magic Man,” “Crazy on You,” plus their cheesy 80s tunes “Alone,” “What About Love.” But their ‘encore,’ brought back their opener, Jason Bonham’s Led Zeppelin Experience, and they did 5 Led Zeppelin songs. And they did them justice. They did “Battle of Evermore,” “Immigrant Song,” “The Rain Song,” “Kashmir,” and “Stairway to Heaven.” It was enjoyable. And another random note? Han knew the bass player, Dan Rothchild. They went to high school together. He called him before the show, but didn’t hear back. Still, wow!

Tuesday night, we drove D up to church in Carlsbad, then drove home down the coast. It was beautiful. We had dinner from the new Five Guys that just opened. It was good!

Last night, Han had a gig at a new venue downtown called Frauds & Swindlers. I didn’t go because I had errands to run after work. I watched tennis and played too long on that damn Candy Crush Saga game!

Tonight, he’s out doing a writing session, and I’m finally catching up on my blog! And now you’re caught up, too. I’m sure there’ll be more to tell after Sandy has been here! So looking forward to it! Enjoy your Labor Day weekend!

thoughts on beauty

There are a few things that have come up this week that have got me thinking about beauty and the concept of beauty.

First, Marion Bartoli winning Wimbledon. I was glad for her, and I welled up when she climbed up to her box to hug her team, and especially her dad. She is short, has an athletic build, brunette. A couple days after the match, I came across this link on Facebook. It’s pretty awful. I was horrified by all of the posts. How could people be so hateful? I will never understand that. Extremely ugly and downright vicious. Who really deserves such anger? And how cruel must you be to even take the time to write such awful words? Marion is not ugly, but that’s truly beside the point. She’s human, and no matter what she looks like, she should be held up as the champion that she is. Oh yeah, and she has an IQ of 175.

TENNIS-GBR-WIMBLEDON Bartoli

Next was this story about what Barbie would really like as an average 19-year-old girl.  Again, short, but her body looks absolutely fine. Barbie is a perception of beauty, but the ‘real’ Barbie is equally beautiful.

 

barbie

 

Finally, there’s this video of Dustin Hoffman that recently surfaced on Upworthy.com. He recalls going through the work to do “Tootsie,” and he describes how he felt he should be beautiful as a woman. When they tell him it won’t get any better than what they got, he has an epiphany that he has not had the experience to know a lot of interesting women because he was ‘brainwashed’ to think that only beautiful women should be approached or could fulfill his interest.

If you do a Google image search of “beautiful women,” you see a bunch of models in bikinis (or less). If you revise that search to ‘interesting women,’ you get a whole new set.

I know it might seem ridiculous to think everyone should have a moment like Dustin Hoffman did, but wouldn’t you rather have that than the people who tweeted about Bartoli?

 

Weekend over

Fleetwood Mac gave an incredible performance. Some of my favorites of the night were Sara, Lookin Out For Love, and Silver Springs. They also talked a lot & told some great stories. It was awesome to see them. I almost got a shirt but the $45 price tag made me pass. Here’s a link to photos and the set list of the show by a local photographer, John Hancock: http://socalconcertphotos.com/2013/07/06/fleetwood-mac/.

In tennis news, the women’s champion is the Frenchwoman, Marion Bartoli. she beat Sabine Lisicki, who had beaten Serena & Radwanska to get there. She was the favorite, too, although she was seeded lower, but she had run out of gas by the time the final came around. I was glad for Bartoli, she was in utter disbelief.

The men’s champion is Andy Murray, the first UK winner since 1936. Novak Djokovic was his opponent. It was a tough match but Andy prevailed. Novak was so awesome in his conciliatory speech; it made me like him all the more. I like Andy, too, so I just liked watching them play.

Our 4th of July was fun, save a terrible hour I spent at Home Depot. In the morning, we went up to Crest for a truly Americana experience: close-knit community parade, live music, etc. That evening, friends came over & we ate & drank & watched fireworks. It was a good time.

So it looks like I’m writing every other day. So far so good!