Jul 31, 2009

this is what anxiety looks like

This is what anxiety looks like.......

"Call me!"
They want me to call. I'm going to call. Where's the phone? The cell doesn't get a good signal here. I want to talk to this person. What do I have to do for the rest of the night? I'm going to sort that pile of papers. I need to make this call. Do I know what I am going to say? Am I going to sound weird? I am going to say something stupid. I don't want to talk. I hate the stupid phone. I never know how to gracefully end the call. Maybe we can text/email/facebook/im instead. Why do they want to talk to me? I want to talk. I can't talk. Maybe we can meet up for coffee.

"Would you like to come over for dinner?"
What the heck should I make for dinner? I can only make pasta. Nobody wants to eat that. It is too ordinary. I know how to cook. I am a good cook! Why can't I think of any ideas? What if I cook something and it doesn't come out right? What if I try something new and it's gross? I have no idea what to do. Is my house clean? Am I going to be able to clean it in time? I don't have any groceries in the house. Should I make dessert? I think I am going to be sick.
"How about we go out for dinner instead?"
"Uh, ok?"

"Did you get that report finished?"
"Not yet. I will have it to you by tomorrow."
I should turn it in the way it is. But it is not perfect. It needs so much work. I need to edit it. I read an article once that had a great quote that I could include. Maybe I could put this into a presentation format that will really impress them! I just found another error. I am going to rewrite this paragraph. Now it doesn't make sense. I am going to add another section. This needs an image. I don't have enough time! Why are they pressuring me! They don't respect me! They think I'm an idiot!! I need a new job.

"What a crazy night! You guys were a mess! Did you see the pictures?"
"Oh. Yeah. It was fun."
OMG. Was I too drunk? Too loud? Did I offend someone? Did I say something stupid? I shouldn't have said that to her. Now she's probably mad at me. Did I buy enough rounds? Was I polite? Are they sick of me? They aren't going to invite me back. Everyone thinks I look fat in the pictures. Because I am fat. Did I eat too much when we were out? I spilled and now everyone thinks I am a sloppy jerk. I am disgusting.

I am so tired. I can't sleep. I have too much to do to lay down now. If I don't go to bed now I will not be able to wake up on time. I never wake up on time. I am a loser. I can never do anything right. Ugh. I wonder who else is up. Do you think anyone would want to talk to me? Doubt it. I am not funny, or smart, and I am mean. I don't have any friends because of that. This week is never going to end. Time passes too quickly though. I wonder if I have any clean jeans to wear tomorrow. If we go out this weekend I am not going to have anything to wear and I am going to look fat and gross. I am not going to go anywhere ever. I am sooooo tired. I need to fall asleep right now or I'm not going to have more than 3 and 1/2 hours of sleep. I can't stop thinking thinking thinking thinking thinking. I need to count. 100....99......98......97.......96.......95.......94........................................................

Jul 29, 2009

a bunch of stupid questions by kimber and an all points bulletin for sunny downs

A Bunch Of Stupid Questions By Kimber

Welcome to the July 30th version of Thursday Thunks!

This week we will answer some crazy questions brought to you by
Kimber, the number 14 and the color of life. (2 questions by Ber, figure out which 2.)

1. You are in an enclosed space with a group of friends. Elevator, auto, small room, etc.. You fart and it really stinks. Do you take credit for it or do you play along with the questioning of who did it?
Dude - I am NOT owning up to that! :) In fact, I may even choose one of you suckas to blame it on! (Ewwww!!! You stannnnnkkk!!!!!)

2. You are locked in a room sitting at a desk with just a piece of paper and a purple crayon. What do you draw?
I can't draw. I am more of a doodler. I would probably start swirling and twirling all over the page until it was completely covered in my purple haze.

3. Do you ever pee in the shower?
No. And don't you pee in my shower either.

4. Have you bought, sold or got rid of something on Craigslist?
I haven't. I find the way it is organized too confusing and it is chock full of spam. I just haven't found it useful or user friendly.

5. You are in a convenience store. In the line in front of you is a drunk guy trying to purchase more alcohol. The cashier tells him they cannot sell it to him because he is obviously already intoxicated. He gets belligerent. The cashier is scared. What do you do?
I think my answers to the last few sets of questions should show by now that I am a person of inaction. I would probably just make sympathetic faces at the cashier and Jedi mind trick the drunk to move along.

6. While shopping for produce, do you "sample" before you buy (i.e. grapes)?
I don't. That stuff's dirty. Of course, once I get it home I may just pop one in my mouth without washing. I can't even explain why that's rational.

7. You are walking down the street and there is a toddler sitting on a bench by themselves in front of a store - do you just keep walking?
Did whoever write this question ever actually HAVE a toddler? Because I have NEVER seen one just sit still for any reason. As if it was that easy..... :)

8. Have you looked up an old friend and/or lover online?
I do. And she is like a missing person or something, because I can't find her. If anyone knows Sunny Downs, and where she is now, please tell me. Maybe she will google herself one day and this entry will come up! Call me! It's Tosin!!!

9. You are nearly in a car/auto accident. Do you freak out, follow the person who nearly caused it & talk to them or just keep going?
Beep, swear, flip them the bird, beep again, tail them for a minute, realize my kids are in the car, gain composure, and move about my day as normal.

Have a stellar week!! Peace out, Y'All!!

Jul 27, 2009

the simple woman's daybook - july 27th edition

For Today...

Outside my window... the most beautiful, immense, serene, luscious green trees.

I am thinking... how very much I miss my babies and want them back in my arms!

From the learning rooms... project management and setting boundaries. Tough work.

I am thankful for... my upcoming schedule change which will allow more time with my children.

From the kitchen... big pot of Nigerian soup. So yummy, spicy, delicious, and comforting!

I am wearing... green shirt, brown capris, brown flip-flops, and fresh ink. Heehee!

I am reading... A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. I am really enjoying it so far!

I am hoping... today is not an indicator of how the entire week will be.

I am creating... a calmer environment to live in.

I am praying...for financial peace.

Around the house... lots of changes! A lot of rooms have moved.

One of my favorite things... music.

A few plans for the rest of the week... finish up some house projects, family style dinner with some friends, get schedules in place for August.

Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you...
This was taken moments ago sitting at my desk.

Jul 22, 2009

it's the july 23rd version of thursday thunks without a catchy title

Welcome to the July 23rd version of Thursday Thunks!

This week we will answer some crazy questions brought to you by
Berleen, the number 22 and the color of the last road kill you saw.

1. You walk into a store and the cashier is being held up by a robber. The robber's accomplice is dead on the floor at your feet with a shotgun laying next to him. The robber does not see you, but the cashier does - what do you do?

Turn my @ss around, walk out of the store, and call 911 from the car. Quietly.

2. We go to an ice cream shop for an ice cream cone. You say you are buying and I am going to stay in the car. You ask me what I want and I say "surprise me", what kind of ice cream cone am I going to get?

This question stresses me out. That tactic of yours is only going to encourage me to read you the entire menu and comment on the pros and cons of each option. That's not what you want is it? Now pick something so I can order fercryinoutloud. And if it matters, I am ordering myself something with Heath or peanut butter or coffee. In a dish. Cuz I'm messy.

3. You have a dream that your co-worker, friend or whoever is hit by a garbage truck after they back into a ladder with a black cat on it. The next day you see that person standing by a ladder with a black cat on it and there is a garbage truck driving down the road.... what do you do?

Yell, "Good Grief!! Learn from your mistakes!!!" Then shove their stupid behind out of the way of the truck.

4. What is the most money you've won on a lottery or scratch off ticket?
Maybe $100? I have to stay away from gambling for the most part due to my completely addictive personality.

5. A neighbor kid down the street comes to your door and offers to wash all of your windows outside for $10 - do you have him do it?
Sure. My neighbor kids are pretty decent. And I sure as heck don't want to wash the windows myself. I might even offer a few more dollars to weed the gardens.

6. Go to Google Images. Type in the name of the last movie you saw. Post the first picture that comes up.

7. Your local animal shelter calls you and says there are 3 dogs that need an immediate foster home for 3 days. If you do not accept, the dogs are put down that day. Do you take them in?
I would never be able to take care of them properly. I would help find someone to care for them though.

Wait..... why is the shelter calling me randomly like this? Is this related to that auto glass place that called? The robbers are familiar too???? Are you guys ripping your own questions off? :)

8. What is the messiest room in your home?
All of them. Help yourself to any cleaning that you like.

9. Have you ever been to a wedding that participated in a strange tradition that you had never heard of?
Oh my..... they are all starting to run together now. Nothing is really jumping out at me as anything unique. And what does that tell you? All that money spent, and I can't think of a single standout moment.

10. Name one sport that you just don't get.

11. What was the last email that came into your inbox about?
Vacation. One I will probably never get to take.

12. Have you ever purchased anything from a sex shop? Extra points if you tell us what it was....
What kind of bonus points? What can I purchase with them?

13. Go back to that Google Images link... type in the last food item that you ate. Post the 2nd picture it comes up with.

14. Got any bumper stickers on your vehicle? What are they?
I hate bumper stickers. It was ingrained in me as a kid not to devalue the resell value of anything. As that's as much as I'd like to delve into the root of my neuroses for one evening.

15. What meme question do you wish was never asked again?
I'm up for whatever. Ask away.

Jul 21, 2009

random thoughts by me in this exact moment in time

I am feeling more than just a little compelled to write, and have some things I want to talk about, but not finding the capability to formulate my thoughts into words. Thus, consider this a return to my stream of consciousness posting.

It wasn't until within the last year that I really understood the depth that I do not stand up for myself. It is a struggle, anxiety producing, stomach turning exercise for me. I wonder if I will ever be truly capable of being effective at it.

I miss my babies. They are out with Nana and PopPop, and I feel like this big hole with them gone. Still living it up as only I can do, but miss them with an indescribable ache.

In the meantime I am redocorating the house, having wild parties, and getting tattooed. That's me being me.

I think my inability to start taking off some of this weight is mental. I just can't pinpoint the exact thing that's blocking me.

I love argyle socks.

If I could buy a pill that prevented my cats from shedding, I would do it instantly and pay almost any price.

Also, can someone explain to me what is happening with their territories lately? They are in the middle of some kind of re-zoning. It's obnoxious.

I wish my feet were different so I could wear cuter shoes.

Here is a list of the things on my mind right now:
what is satisfied?

Peace OUT.

Jul 18, 2009

adventures in "vintage" clothes shopping

I was shopping in the Salvation Army today. We are having a retro birthday party for our friend tomorrow, and everyone is going all out with outfits and everything. (This crowd is all about the theme. Don't mess.)

So I'm wandering around in the store and I realized I didn't know how to shop there. I was in awe of the strange and wonderful way they separate the clothes. I mean, who DOESN'T need a smart pair of slacks? With a jazzy little blouse I suppose.

But please, if you EVER find me as a regular shopper in the "Elastic Waist" section, just shoot me on the spot and put me out of whatever misery I am obviously enduring.

I found a hot pink slip on shoe at the end of the shoe aisle. There was only one. I said to DH- "This is perfect! You have GOT to help me find the other shoe!" The lady working overheard and said, "Oh, I've got the other one here behind the counter. We like to keep the good ones separate like that."

Whoa. So many thoughts. I will give her a courtesy do over in determining the shoe is a "good" one. But I must also note that it cost $4 for the pair. And I never realized what a problem Salvation Army used shoe theft must be.

As we went up to pay, there was a guy at the counter on the phone checking out. I heard him say, "No man. I'm not going home. I'm picking up Sara something and then I'm going to her place for a bit." So I look down at his purchase just as the lady asks him, "Do you want a bag for that?" "No." And he grabbed up his handful of Salvation Army lingerie to take to his girl.

Yeah. Any time things are feeling rough, just remember the poor girl whose man stopped at the Salvation Army to pick her up a little something on his way over for his booty call. Yikes.

Jul 17, 2009

heterochromia, a haunted earth, and the dungeon

Welcome to the July 16th version of Thursday Thunks!

This week we will answer some crazy questions brought to you by
Kimber, the number 15 and the color of windows.

1. Do you know anyone with heterochromia? Does it freak you out or do you think it's interesting?
I'm pretty sure that picture there must be of Tammy's old cat. I don't remember it's actual name because I always called it Acid Trip. It had eyes just like that, and used to sit on the back of the couch staring at the wall. The cat was freaky. Eyes were the least of its issues.

2. Should a 5th face be added to Mount Rushmore? If so, who?
Do people really visit that? Who's on it now? You know there's like a ton of actual interesting things to look at besides one or two hundred year old dead presidents, right?

3. If you could live on any planet other than earth, which one would you choose and why?
I wonder how many people are going to take the cheap shot - Uranus. Ba dum dum. Rimshot. I'm going to pick Venus. Because I guess that's where women are from.

4. We're going to spend the night at a reportedly haunted location, are you going with us?
Heeeeeeeck no. I don't like the scary. Anyone seen that new trailer for Orphan? What IS wrong with Esther???? I already can't sleep just wondering about THAT. And you want me to go hang in a cemetary or something? Uh, Nooooo way.

If so, which reportedly haunted place are we going?
You'll be sleeping out in a cemetary on an old grave. I'll be at home cowering under the sheets trying to figure out what's wrong with Esther. That creepy little orphan really bothers me. (No offense to orphans. Or women named Esther.)

5. Did you play The Queen's Meme this week? If so, was it fair of The Queen to put Berleen in the dungeon by association with Kimber? (We all know Kimber deserved it, but Berleen?!)
Well, no I did not. Should I have? What's everybody think?

6. What color is the towel(s) hanging in your bathroom?
periwinkle. Like this text color I am using now.

7. Tell us something funny that happened to you recently.
Ack!! It's too hard to be funny on command!

8. We just bought you a cow. Do you kill it & grill it, feed it & milk it, or sell it?
I walked it down the hill and snuck it onto the cow farm to be cared for by someone more able. The rest of those options sound too much like work.
Plus, presuming you bought it at the cow farm down the hill, that farmer just totally scored. Go him.

9. It's 115 degrees outside (46 degrees Celsius), are you able to go without Air Conditioning?
How's that crack you're smoking? Good? Enjoying yourself? Now give me my damn air conditioning and walk away before I really snap.

10. When you visit the zoo do you wonder which animal tastes better with a bit of butter & spices?
Oh my. No. I wonder which cages I can sneak into without getting eaten. And the one's where I'm sure I'll get eaten, I assess how long it might take after I snuck in before I get eaten. Perhaps the lions are looking at ME thinking, "She would be a pretty tasty morsel with some butter and spices....."

11. Dog ate your homework/work papers. Does it crap out Shakespeare, quantum physics, or just crap?
It's going to crap out my fist for eating my stuff.
(Oh man, I can just hear the clicks of the animal activists leaving my site...If it makes you feel any better, I know enough not to own a dog.)

12. We are taking you to a broadway show, what are we going to see?
Take me to see anything you want. I love live theater, music, art, performances of any kind. Just for kicks, it's your choice this time around. Ok fine - Rent! Geez, you're so indecisive!

13. Gunshots in your neighborhood. Pop, pop, pop. Do you go out to take a look, or hide?
Actual gunshots, or Larry setting off fireworks, or Tony's car backfiring? The latter two are much more likely to be the source. I think actual gunfire would catch me so off guard I just may get caught in the crossfire. Shortly before I pack up my sh%t and move.

Jul 16, 2009

surrogacy, ivf, hormones, and all the stuff they don't talk about

I was talking with a mom this week about the after affects of IVF. She used IVF to conceive her daughter, and two years later is still struggling with issues associated with it. I have the same problem. Talking with her was like having light bulb after light bulb go on. First of all, it's been TWO years, and nobody has talked to me about this? Strange. Secondly, if this is a common or "normal" after effect, why have I never heard about it from anyone? My research on any topic borders on obsessive. I read and read until I can't read anymore about everything. I don't recall ever reading anything about this beforehand. What I know is, something changed.

I went into the surrogacy with what I would call a hypersensitivity to hormone levels and changes to begin with. This was further supported by the fertility doctors inability to get an accurate handle on what my body was doing and how it was reacting to hormone treatments for three cycles before having the confidence to proceed with the embryo transfer. And of course the implantation was successful on the first attempt. So with that in mind, I already had somewhat of an awareness that I was particularly sensitive to hormone shifts.

The science involved to be a gestational surrogate are what can only be described as unnatural. I was taking one course of hormones to produce an optimal uterine lining for embryo implantation while simultaneously taking a course of hormones to stop ovulation. It was putting my body out of sync with itself - working against itself if you will. How anyone discovered and perfected such a process is a miracle to me.

While having an understanding of this process going in, there was no discussion about what might happen after the fact. The pregnancy was normal. I was certainly sicker during the first trimester as I was still on hormone supplements during that time. Once I was off of them though, it was pretty typical. The labor and delivery was different than my first two, but I think that was independent of the fact that it was a surrogacy. Each delivery I have had has provided a chance to learn and improve. I would call this last one my most empowering and was such a wonderful accomplishment to me to do it without medical intervention. So much so I think that I would be thankful to do it again.

The postpartum period was horrific - due to several contributing factors. It wasn't until speaking with a friend who had experienced a late term miscarriage vocalized it for me that I understood some of what I was feeling. She reminded me that my body was reacting like I was caring for a new baby, but was not. I was tired mentally and physically, and my milk coming in was distressing in a way I cannot describe. I did not sleep at night, didn't eat. The things that distract one from a typical PPD were not there - forcing yourself to care for the baby, entertain visitors, preparing a nursery, etc. I was left with my postpartum body and my thoughts. I got over it by returning to work, healing, spending time with friends, therapy, medication.

Two years later though the hormonal changes are still there. Every pregnancy leaves its mark, there are always changes. This time I feel like my hormones are simply out of balance. I can't change from one environment to the other - hot to cold, inside to outside, high humidity to low - and I start sweating uncontrollably. My skin is sooooo dry. My hair has changed texture. I CANNOT lose weight. I am frequently tired and worn out. I am NOT depressed. I have been depressed, and this is not it.

Expressing these concerns with my doctors has resulted in testing with results of "normal." I may have NEVER been normal, but I am quite certain that THIS isn't it. I would put some effort into pursuing an endocrinologist, but just can't work the effort into this venture yet.

I can't imagine that I am not alone in what has happened to me, and discussing it this week with the other mom only confirmed that. I am not sure what the next step will be. If this family honors me with the opportunity to surrogate for them again, I would know better what to expect. There are so many reasons that an experienced surrogate is better than a first timer, although I had no idea of this going in. We'll have to see what happens.

I haven't had the opportunity to be as involved as I would like in their lives since they had the baby. This is the function of many things. It's ok, and probably for the best I suppose. It is not exactly as I might have imagined that though. We are at the age that the divide between those of us with older children, those of us with babies and toddlers, and those of us with no children at all becomes more obvious. I've been on all sides of it, and can understand.

Because of our intersecting circles, most of our friends don't really talk about it in terms of the surrogacy, only in regards to the baby. This is the way it should be for them I think. For me though, it helps to talk about things. I have a decreasingly small group of people who listen and talk with me and work through the real stuff. I like to talk about it though. It is not upsetting to me. Even if some of this stuff sounds negative or bad, it's really not. They are just the reality of what happens. And people should know. Maybe someone new doing this will google the right terms and come up with the post and know a little more what to expect. I welcome comments and questions, and any discussion that follows.

Jul 14, 2009

bucket list

I seem to be all into lists lately, so here is another. I have been motivated in several ways to start formulating a life list. A "Bucket List" if you will. There are so many things I want to accomplish in life, and I am realizing more and more that having the victory of completing some of these things provides satisfaction and fulfillment in ways that I am so lacking right now. So, here are a few things off the top of my head for now as I begin to ponder this further...

Spend a month in Europe
Lose 100 pounds
Run a 5K
Make my house clutter free
Own a vacation property
Have a job title I am proud of (Possibly SAHM)
Receive a piece of art (or song or ???) inspired by me
Have a professional portrait shoot in the style I have been studying
Attend a live taping of a show
Have a best friend for whom I am also a best friend
Have more published writing
Teach my children to be better people than I have been

Jul 8, 2009

top 100 books challenge

One of the blogs I enjoy recently discussed the Top 100 Books list, and the daunting task of reading through the list. While I have no grand illusions of completing it, I think I would like to try to accomplish reading at least a respectable chunk of them. She edited her list somewhat, so I don't know what was removed/replaced, but it's good enough of a guideline to work from....

I will admit upfront to not being well read when it comes to the classics. I have not often found enough hours in the day to just read for pleasure, which has lent itself to me choosing the easiest to understand light and breezy chick lit-esque reading selection when I have the time. Here's to turning over a new leaf, eh?

I'll check back in to let you know how I'm doing. I have some summer reading I am doing for work right now, but plan to hit up the library in the upcoming weeks to get started. Our library is one of the things I love about this town.

Books in bold are ones I have already read...

1 To Kill a Mockingbird (1960) by Harper Lee
2 The Secret Garden (1911) by Frances Hodgson Burnett
3 Pride and Prejudice (1813) by Jane Austen
4 Twilight (2005) by Stephenie Meyer
5 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (1964) by Ronald Dahl
6 One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1962) by Ken Kesey
7 1984 (1949) by George Orwell
8 Jane Eyre (1847) by Charlotte Brontë
9 The Richest Man in Babylon (1955) George S. Clason
10 The Catcher in the Rye (1945) by J.D. Salinger
11 Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl (1947) by Anne Frank
12 Little Women (1868) by Louisa May Alcott
13 Gone With The Wind (1936) by Margaret Mitchell
14 The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (1950) by C.S. Lewis
15 The Giver (1993) by Lois Lowry
16 The Kite Runner (2003) by Khaled Hosseini
17 A Christmas Carol (1843) by Charles Dickens
18 The Great Gatsby (1925) by F. Scott Fitzgerald
19 The Count of Monte Cristo (1844) by Alexandre Dumas
20 The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (1979) by Douglas Adams
21 Ender's Game (1985) by Orson Scott Card
22 Anne of Green Gables (1905) by L.M. Montgomery, Margaret Atwood (Introduction)
23 Crime and Punishment (1866) by Fyodor Dostoevsky
24 The Time Traveler's Wife (2003) by Audrey Niffenegger
25 Les Misérables (1862) by Victor Hugo
26 The Little Prince (1943) by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
27 Mein Kampf (1925) Adolf Hitler
28 One Hundred Years of Solitude (1967) by Gabriel García Márquez, Gregory Rabassa (Translator)
29 The Alchemist (1988) by Paulo Coelho
30 The Princess Bride (1973) by William Goldman
31 East of Eden (1952) by John Steinbeck
32 The Grapes of Wrath (1939) by John Steinbeck
33 Animal Farm (1945) by George Orwell
34 Memoirs of a Geisha (1997) by Arthur Golden
35 A Million Little Pieces (2003) James Frey
36 Lolita (1955) by Vladimir Nabokov
37 Lord of the Flies (1954) by William Golding
38 Walden (1854) by Henry David Thoreau
39 A Wrinkle in Time (1962) by Madeleine L'Engle
40 Anna Karenina (1873) by Leo Tolstoy
41 Catch-22 (1961) by Joseph Heller
42 Life of Pi (2001) by Yann Martel
43 Slaughterhouse-Five (1969) by Kurt Vonnegut
44 A Tale of Two Cities (1859) by Charles Dickens
45 Watership Down (1972) by Richard Adams
46 Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass (1865) by Lewis Carroll
47 A Thousand Splendid Suns (2006) by Khaled Hosseini
48 The Poisonwood Bible (1998) by Barbara Kingsolver
49 Wuthering Heights (1847) by Emily Brontë
50 Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (1997) by J.K. Rowling
51 Dune (1965) by Frank Herbert
52 The Odyssey (600) by Homer, Robert Fagles (Translator)
53 Water for Elephants (2006) by Sara Gruen
54 Brave New World (1932) by Aldous Huxley
55 The Road (2006) by Cormac McCarthy
56 The Fountainhead (1943) by Ayn Rand
57 The Picture of Dorian Gray (1890 by Oscar Wilde
58 The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1884) by Mark Twain
59 A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (1943) by Betty Smith
60 The Compleat Works of Wllm Shkspr (1983) by Reduced Shakespeare Company
61 Angela's Ashes (1996) by Frank McCourt
62 The Book Thief (2005) by Markus Zusak
63 The Da Vinci Code (2003) by Dan Brown
64 The Hobbit: Or There and Back Again (1937) by J.R.R. Tolkien
65 Night (1958) by Elie Wiesel
66 The Pillars of the Earth (1989) by Ken Follett
67 The Giving Tree (1964) by Shel Silverstein
68 Outlander (1991) by Diana Gabaldon
69 The Brothers Karamazov (1880) by Fyodor Dostoevsky, Richard Pevear (Translator)
70 Atlas Shrugged (1957) by Ayn Rand
71 A Prayer for Owen Meany (1988) by John Irving
72 Don Quixote (1605) by Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra
73 Dracula (1897) by Bram Stoker
74 The Lovely Bones (202) by Alice Sebold
75 Sense and Sensibility (1811) by Jane Austen
76 The Iliad (600) by Homer, Robert Fagles (Translator)
77 Moby Dick (1850) by Herman Melville
78 War and Peace (1865) by Leo Tolstoy, Henry Gifford (editor)
79 Of Mice and Men (1937) by John Steinbeck
80 The Old Man and the Sea (1952) by Ernest Hemingway
80 Middlesex (2002) by Jeffrey Eugenides
82 Lonesome Dove (1920) by Larry McMurtry
83 The Bell Jar (1963) by Sylvia Plath
84 The Unbearable Lightness of Being (1983) by Milan Kundera
85 Siddhartha (1922) by Hermann Hesse
86 The Handmaid's Tale (1985) by Margaret Atwood
87 Their Eyes Were Watching God (1937) by Zora Neale Hurston
88 Emma (1815) by Jane Austen, Fiona J. Stafford (Editor)
89 On the Road (1957) by Jack Kerouac
90 The Glass Castle: A Memoir (2005) by Jeannette Walls
91 All Quiet on the Western Front (1929) by Erich Maria Remarque
92 The Master and Margarita (1966) by Mikhail Bulgakov
93 The Red Tent (1997) by Anita Diamant
94 Pygmalion (1914) by George Bernard Shaw
95 A Clockwork Orange (1962) by Anthony Burgess
96 The Perks of Being a Wallflower (1999) by Stephen Chbosky
97 Tess of the D'Urbervilles (1888) by Thomas Hardy
98 The Name of the Rose (1980) by Umberto Eco
99 Eat, Pray, Love (2006) by Elizabeth Gilbert
100 Romeo and Juliet (1595) by William Shakespeare

bringing scratch & sniff stickers to your graduation party

Welcome to the July 9th version of Thursday Thunks!
This week we will answer some crazy questions brought to you by
Berleen, the number 141 and the color of your underwear.

1. Do you tend to have a guilty conscious?
I absolutely do. It is a function of the OCD. I think, overthink, feel badly, think some more.....

2. Do you still have your wisdom teeth?
I had them removed by some hack oral surgeon ten years ago and half of my mouth and chin are still numb. Awesome.

3. Peanut Butter - creamy or crunchy?
Crunchy please!

4. Get up off your butt. Take 5 steps. Which leg did you start out on?
Right. You should always start on the right. Because I said so.

5. What color is your favorite kitchen utensil?

6. Did you watch the Michael Jackson memorial/funeral?

Did he die? I hadn't heard! (Kidding.)
I tried to use a bereavement day at work since he was my first boyfriend after all. They said no. Whatevs.

7. Do you know anyone who graduated from
high school this year?
Were you invited to their graduation party? Did you go?
I'm sure at least one of my cousins graduated, and one of my favorite assistants at the dance school graduated too. No party invites though. Perhaps they were lost in the mail....

8. White with black stripes or black with white stripes?
White with black stripes. Again, because I said so.

9. If we were to call your 6th grade teacher, what would they say about you?

Who is she?
(I was in middle school that year, had 7 or so teachers, and can't even name a single one.)

10. Can you draw a perfect circle?
Not even close. Not even with a compass or a plate to trace.

11. What was your favorite scratch & sniff sticker scent?
Grape? I have no idea. I haven't scratched or sniffed a sticker in twenty years.

12. What does your sibling do for a living?
I don't know - something sciency?

13. How many light switches and electrical outlets are in the room that you are in right now?
1 switch and 3 or so outlets. And the biggest unsafest tangle of overloaded extension cords you've ever seen. Say a prayer nothing sparks, k?

14. Do you know sign language?
I do. I was fluent enough to be mistaken for Deaf back in the day, but now not so much. Very rusty.

15. Do you step on cracks in the sidewalk?
No way. Mom doesn't like it when I break her back.

16. And the sheets on your bed look like....?
Sheets. The kind you sleep on. Beige with stripes. Or whatever.

17. What is something that everyone else has, but you don't?

Motivation. Care to spare me some?