It Almost Got Me…And Then He Did

Yesterday almost got me. I’ve been working for weeks to put together a multi-school parent info night to attempt to a) finally touch all of the interest forms gathered back in August and b) attempt to form new troops as community troops and finally be able to put the Norman leads in the pile that says “done.”

It was a lot a lot of work. Busy work, dealing with each of the 11-12 schools that I hadn’t yet touched. There was no support from the volunteer base here, no communication, which they’re volunteers. I get it. Good lord, please I get it. But I see other people in my department actually getting to work with recruiting volunteers in their assigned area and Oh!! what I wouldn’t give to have some of that same communication. So much easier. Basic questions being answered, insight as to what schools would be a good fit together. So I was going blind on most all of this and the anxiety and pressure of doing it alone and it wasn’t impossible, but the whole “work harder not smarter” thing that it was forcing me to do was making me a bit crazy.

A lot crazy in fact.

Yesterday also brought a parent meeting that I’ve been trying for three weeks to make happen in Shawnee. So I quickly made some materials for the two schools to send home in folders today, and got approval for more materials and then frantically drove there to deliver yesterday before noon.

I squeezed in an appointment with our ring designer and made a few choices there, one step closer to pulling the trigger on that which feels good.

Back to my office in Norman to get info out to the parents for the night’s event, as well as to begin organizing for next week’s event and oh wait there’s another event I need to gather info for and email requests out, and this volunteer who has slipped through the cracks needs help and and and…hells bells it’s time to go look at the wedding venue before I go to the meeting.

By the time I was on my way to meet Mark, I was about to meltdown completely. Full blown hiccup tears and forming my resignation.

“I could quit. I could quit this job and find another one. . . but I want to pay for this wedding, and I told Julie I would stay at least 2 years and I’m really close to being able to say that…and I really like the people I work with, I feel super close real life friends with several of my girls here…but I could quit this fucking job right now and not worry about waking up with a feverblister because I went to that level of stress.”

I tamped that down when we met at the venue and of course the place was perfect. PERFECT. We are still looking at the packages they have and will need to commit to a number of guests that we can afford. There’s no way I’ll be able to invite everyone. I mean, I do need to leave some room on the guest list for Mark’s people. We joke about that. But for all intents and purposes we found a venue and have settled on a date. Once it’s contract-signed official I will announce it here.

After that meeting it was time to go to the library and set up. Tables, chairs, recruitment kit, all of it. And it was just me and that task? That was about to be the straw that broke my back.

“I’ll help you,” he said.

I truly could have cried.

And so we went to the library and set up the room in record time and since I hadn’t eaten enough during the day my stress headache was getting worse by the minute so he left to get me some advil and a coke and while I was still just a bundle of anxiety that anyone would show, or that those who did show would be angry about not having a troop for their girl…

The room was PACKED. I was yelling, (because there were kids and babies crying too) and I know how to project to a room full of people. It was nuts. We walked away with *some paid memberships. MOST will join online because payday isn’t until Friday and or next week. But I got their info to do follow up. I got 6-8 adults that want to step up and form new troops. Ann came after her other meeting just in time to kind of help me wrap it up (we had to start a little early because the room was packed and people were antsy) anyways, I had help getting the room back to order and when I got home my little family was waiting on me and my favorite new tv shows were on and we had a wedding venue.

This job is rough right now. It’s been rough for almost two years. I’m not sure how long I want to live in such a high stress place in terms of employment, but nights events like last night make it worthwhile.

Days like yesterday are fierce, but good LORD it makes life easier to know that someone has my back, from big decisions about money and weddings and life to the simple things like setting up tables and chairs. That unconditional support is worth every bit of the crazy.

 

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Chipping Away

The weekend flew by. We had our all day gig on Saturday which was a fun day, learning experience and time spent with friends, and then I worked all day today at a GS event. In the unusual for this time of year heat and wind. I feel chapped.

But we made some progress on the wedding today. I feel like we are getting closer and closer to deciding on what we want for our day, how we want to celebrate. We made some initial contacts tonight, sent some texts and some emails. We have a venue to look at this week and I hope to hear from our jeweler tomorrow. I hope that we can set the date this week.

Lovely words from beautiful friends have filled my phone with texts, my mailbox with cards and just general lovely well wishes and offers to help support the day. I look at our calendar and get giddy and excited and look forward to celebrating.

But here we are and it’s 10:30 on Sunday night and Mark and Winnie are asleep on the couch and I’m about to fall asleep and would love to not have to work tomorrow since I worked today but I have deadline and pressing things to do so…alas. I’m turning off my brain.

No more wedding and no more Girl Scouts. Just going to snuggle down into this bed and…think about invitations probably…and maybe pinterest some things…but eventually sleep will come.

Our calendar slows way down in two more weekends.

I cannot freakin wait.

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There’s A Band!

So back sometime this summer, we decided to put a band together.

Likely it was one night of sitting around with the Raley’s, good food had been had, good beer was being had and likely the whisky bottle was out by the time someone said…

We should start a band.

Famous last words, right?

Well, we went ahead and decided to do some rehearsing, put some songs together, work on harmonies, and maybe we would just play at the 2nd Friday Artwalk once or twice. We performed our first time out for just our friends here at the house. We used the excuse of a Welcome Home party for Trish and Bruce and for Bill and Rita, but we just wanted an audience who would eat and drink and tell us we done good…no matter how we sounded.

When we got around to the 2nd Friday performance, it was a cold and rainy night so we sang to probably 10 people total for the whole gig. And that was actually fine and dandy. No pressure. We laughed, we sang, it was all good. But because there were some bits posted on social media that were seen by other friends…well we have a gig this weekend. We will be performing three sets starting at noon  (Noon/Two/Four) at the Canadian River Wine Festival down in Lexington. (just a few miles south of Norman)

So whaddya know!

We are called Harvest Reserve. (Mark voted for Sound Holes and got veto’d)

We laugh a lot and it’s fun. And it gives me something to focus on that has nothing in the world to do with Girl Scouts or volunteers or forming new troops or 3000 girls on a wait list who want to play but 0 adults volunteering so that they can.

I’ll let you know how Saturday goes! (Also checking out the winery as possible wedding venue. ;-)  )

 

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The Man, The Mountain and Those Two Dudes Under The Puppet

When we left for Harvest Fest last Wednesday, we were in that frenzy “getallthethingscrossedoffthelist” but we did. We got the car packed and all of the things in Tetris like fashion and off we went to meet Trish and her fam and then BOOM! We were on the road and the work phone was turned off and left at home and all things were possible and right!

Getting to Mulberry Mountain so early (We have never set up camp in daylight before at that place) meant that our campsite was SUPER close to the festival grounds and for one moment we were unsure about the noise and how that would work out but we rolled with it and proceeded to set up the three tents, one potty tent, two pop-ups which became our kitchen and living room, complete with hanging lanterns and floor heaters. We really don’t mess around.

I will tell you that camping is still one of the best things, in spite of the mattress with the slow leak that makes you feel like you’re sleeping on a sloshy waterbed by the morning, in spite of the cramped conditions and the hippy kids that you can hear talking from your tent at night, in spite of dude with the booming voice who clearly does not care about anyone else in the camp when he begins his stupid talking at the earliest possible hours of the morning.

I will tell you that the music was amazing. We saw the Jayhawks give a great show, The Oh Hello’s, Rose’s Pawn Shop, Trampled by Turtles all in one lineup on Thursday. We were all so exhausted that we were almost crying trying to stay up for TbT and when we stumbled back to camp and went to sleep and froze our bippies off on the coldest night ever, it really didn’t matter. We slept. We awoke. We had great camp coffee and breakfast and did it all over again!

Mark and I talked several times about being there two years ago and the magic of it all. About how things all started at that festival and about how this year is different but still awesome. We knew that it would be a different festival but we kept finding moments of magic and just laughing with each other about “remember last time…?”

I will tell you that the weather could not have been more perfect. Gorgeous temps, sunshine enough to need sunscreen during the day but breeze enough to keep things cool and enough shade to seek solace at times when we needed it. It was perfection.

Friday was a good day of music and I wish I could tell you who we listened to but I cannot. I know that we drank delicious beers, we napped, we listened to music, we ate amazing pulled pork sandwiches at camp and then suddenly it was the evening and Mark was just tweaky. Every time I would look up he would be gone somewhere. I couldn’t keep track of him.

The group had decided that we would just park our chairs at the main stage and sit and watch the lineup and have a chill night. The music was good, but no one made us lose our minds. The hula-hoop watching was pretty spectacular though. At one point, Mark reappeared and said come with me. We walked over to the giant octopus puppet–there are giant puppets that during the shows, people will either wear or take out into the madness of hippy stew that happens at the front of the stage and it’s pretty fun to watch–we danced under that puppet two years ago–the puppet wasn’t out in the madness yet so we walked over and under it and Mark turned to me and said:

“Will you marry me?”

I was shocked and crying and laughing and of course I said YES YES YES about a thousand times. We were both laughing and crying and kissing and hugging. And then at one point, he said, “Oh I’m supposed to be on my knees, right?” So he got down on his knees and asked me again and again I said YES YES YES and more laughing and more crying and more talking and hugging.

At one point I looked over and there were two dudes laying on the ground under the puppet clearly just tripping hard on something. They giggled at us, all glassy eyed and one turned to the other and said, “dude I am never going to forget this moment!” (at which point he likely forgot that moment completely)

And once again, our lives changed at that festival, on that mountain. Just like that. Forever.

We had no cell service on the mountain so it really was just us for another day, lots of laughing and hugging and well wishes. We decided that no internet broadcasting until our families were told and when we finally did the world just unleashed so much love and happiness our way that it felt like we got engaged all over again!

We are on the search for the perfect ring, we have just barely begun discussing what we want to do in terms of a wedding/ceremony/celebration/event. Life is trying it’s best to get back in front of us with work and the Depot and obligations and all things clogging up the calendar.

I will tell you though…that we are both so happy. We feel the love and the light from all around and can’t wait to see what’s next!

That mountain…it is magical.

Life is good.

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Fury

Why is it that life is busiest right before you leave for a vacation? It’s the most tumultuous, the most frenzied, there are more things to be done, more places to be more things to check off than at any other time. What the hell, Universe? Come ON!

I’ve been furious lately.

Furiously working, furiously putting troops together, making calls, following up on a section of leads that needed it. We are in this place with work where we don’t quite have the future, and can’t quite quit the past, we are doing better in some places and worse in others. What we *thought the process would be…isn’t. What we were *told the end game would be…hasn’t. So we scramble and we do the best we can and we still get shitty attitude and have knee jerk reactions and feel like we’re the ONLY ONES WORKING DAMNIT.

Because work has eaten me alive, all things on the home front suffer as well. The house, the relationship, all of it. And I get this deep seeded anger that boils underneath the surface at the whole situation. At the hairballs in the corner and the guest room that must be cleaned before house-sitting guests arrive this week. At the lack of forward motion on so many projects and the fact that I can’t do a damn thing about it because by the time I get home I’m completely tapped out. Except for the fury.

Displaced as it is, it’s leaking out all over my life and I need to figure out how to staunch the flood.

I’m looking forward to going back to the mountain for Harvest Fest tomorrow. I’m looking forward to several days surrounded by peace and love and music and soaking up the place where my life completely changed two years ago. I hope to reconnect with this life that I love, with this man that I love and slow down enough to be able to say the words and think the thoughts and sing the songs. I want to laugh with my friends and to get back to what’s really important.

Two years ago I rolled onto that mountain fresh off of taking the GRE, with deadlines and papers and work and bills chomping at my heels. My life was solely focused on surviving day to day and finishing grad school. I needed that long weekend two years ago, like I need it today.

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The Weight/Wait of a Calendar and other Good Things

It was a good day.

Oklahoma is now a Gay Marriage State. I swore it would happen. I mean, we were the last state to ban tattoos and those are legal now. Seriously. Growing up, tattoos were forbidden, they were taboo. One had to cross a state line or “go to a guy I know who works out of his garage.” I was taught that tattoos were of the same evil weight as KISS or any other non Amy Grant music.

And then one day, boom. Legal.

 

* let me say that I’m not comparing gay marriage to the plight of the tattoo in Oklahoma. I’m just saying that what once seemed impossible…its now possible.

I am so beyond thrilled for my friends here in this terminally red state. Friends who get the same rights as the rest of us. I’ve offered up my officiating services to anyone who wants them. I hope they take me up on it!

After that joyous bit of news I dove head first into work. It was one of those good work days where tasks got crossed off the list, much forward motion. I have reason to believe that tomorrow’s Parent Info meeting will produce a new troop as will the one for next Tuesday. That’s what it’s all about on my end people. Recruiting adults and girls. Making it happen. Follow through. Making sure no one slips through the cracks.

The weekend reunion was full of laughter. I had so much fun on Friday night it was ridiculous. Saturday was fun too, just a different vibe altogether. Sunday was a blissful day full of nothing. Seriously. I didn’t even get out of my pj’s. Ever. I had the most relieved sense of the calendar…like finally all of the big things that had to be done…were done.

Until today when I started to try to find a weekend to go see my family in Arkansas. I’ve tried several times since July but work always interfered. I have worked most every weekend in August and September and the weekends that I had trips planned, more working popped up. When I looked at the calendar, it became clear that if we don’t go this coming weekend, I don’t have another free one until November 15th.

I don’t have another free weekend until November 15th.

What in the holy hell…is it hot in here? Can you breathe? Because I can’t breathe.

It makes me crazy to think about. Mark and I got our calendars and started marking our Thanksgiving and Christmas days off because that’s when it will happen next. And that makes me just crazy.

But this life is for the living, right? And wouldn’t I just be pissed if I wasted it, wasted one single weekend/day/week/month/moment?

I was surrounded by classmates all weekend. Some of us have aged well. Some of us have seen rough days and long nights. Some of us have fought fierce battles and won. Some of us haven’t had to fight for much at all. That connecting thread though, that moment when we’re all outside and laughing and singing at the top of our lungs we remember that we were a witness to each other’s life. And that matters. The living matters.

So I’m going to Arkansas on Friday. There are soccer games and a corn maze on the schedule for Saturday with my nephews. Fresh hair for all. Then home on Sunday to prep and leave for Harvest Fest on Wednesday. Harvest Fest. Remember when we went there? Remember the mud and the rain and the music and the Mark? 

We’re going back to the scene of the crime, ya’ll. I’m excited. Mark and I met there two years ago this month. Can you believe it? Two years? Trish and Bruce and Riley and her friend will go and we shall camp and we shall listen to amazing music. Seriously. That Thursday lineup is killer. And we shall celebrate dancing under giant puppets in the mud two years ago and the way it changed our lives forever.

Today a lot of lives were changed forever. For the better.

In spite of the weighty calendar, it was a pretty damn good Monday.

The wait is over.

Love love love.

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Back Again

I’ve had owned this blog for awhile now. Back before we went to Pagosa Springs we began the transfer, and then finished it after we got back. I’ve thought about writing, actually worked up some posts in my head but every time there has been a spare second to even begin the work, something else took precedence.

August and September were chock full of work. work. and more work. It’s been a 6 day a week, 12 or more hours a day gig since August and it has been exhausting and mentally draining. Mark’s life has been all Depot all the time. Closing one concert series and starting another, new ticketing system, new board members, new processes. It’s a lot. d We’ve attempted to throw in some house organization, garage sale/donation of stuff. It has been a whirlwind…complete with whiplash.

I feel like today for the first time, I can catch my breath.

The work has been bookended by major events and trips.

I rappelled off of a 16 story building in August.

We went to Santa Fe/Pagosa Springs the end of August.

This weekend was my 25th high school reunion.

And, sure, we head back to Harvest Fest in two weeks for our final vacation of the year but that brings zero stress to me.

Today I feel like I can breath and it’s been quite a while since I’ve felt that way.

We have zero things that must be done today. I’m still in my sweats and watching Gilmore Girls on Netflix. I’ve a roast in the crock pot and have made some half hearted attempts to pick up the firtch around the house. There have been catnaps and peanut butter sandwiches mixed in with some Facebooking. And really, that’s fine by me.

And I’m here. Writing again.

I’ll call this a pretty successful Sunday.

 

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Hanging the Sign

The time has come to actually move all of this content to some other space.

Back several years ago Chris said, “I’ve got room, you should totally turn your blog from Zelda Pinwheel to Mistiridiculous.”

He said a lot of other stuff that sounded to me like this: Merherhjiosierrioguiourg giggabite klweroidrelj;ej thermocouplelk;shjnekrushe domain and host space dlskerjelj I’ll do it.

Ok.

And voila my blog moved from blogger to wordpress and I went from Zelda to Mistiridiculous.

And then it all went to shit because he got sick and died. And I have no idea about any of it, and have never paid for any of it and that has always bothered me, partly because I don’t want to be a burden and partly because I don’t like not being in control of my own space.

And now I have to figure out the who what where this space is going. And I’m thinking about what I want it to be. And what I want it not to be. And while the deadline isn’t right ON TOP OF ME…it looms.

And quite frankly, it’s just not something I’m ready to figure out right now just as recruitment season is here and while there’s never a good time to figure out things you don’t have any desire to figure out, I’ve decided to just quit for awhile.

So I’m going to get the content. Mark is going to do some research. And we’ll make some choices. I haven’t been writing much as of late.

I’ve got some things to tell you about like the house concert that we’re having next Saturday where Mark, Brad, Lisa and I are going to perform for a handful of friends.

I want to tell you about the essential oil bandwagon I jumped on and how much I love it and how I’m not taking ambien every single night anymore. I want to tell you about Winnie. and my garden and the vacations we’ve had and will have.

And I might.

But this space has become more of a chore for me now. More of a thing that I have to get figured out.

And that puts stress on me, so I’m just going to remove the stress. I’ll show back up somewhere and you’ll all know about it.

But till then…I’m hanging the sign. closedblog

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Peaceful Morning

I hate that I wake up so early on the weekends now. Between the sun and my internal clock and Winnie, there’s no sleeping in. The beauty of it, is that once I get up, get all of the livestock fed, get the coffee made, I can sit outside and enjoy the garden, and the birds and listen to our sprinkler system finish cycling. It really is lovely. We’ve reached that point in the summer where these temps are the only ones worth being outside in.

Yesterday is finished and thank GOD we survived. We were over-staffed in the US Open booth, and while most of everyone was ok with not working their tails off, there were the few expected sour attitudes. Seriously. It must be exhausting to be so so so very sour inside and out. Even the booth manager from the concession management team noticed it and said something to me. I apologized for her attitude, and made sure that he understood that her attitude wasn’t representative of Girl Scouts,  and that we all were happy to help in this booth and work together. Yesterday was hot, but not as bad as last Tuesday and not as bad as today and tomorrow will be. I’m pretty thankful that my tours of duty are behind me.

I couldn’t be more blessed with better people who stepped up and gave time and talent to work the tent yesterday. Friends from all parts of my life said YES! YES I will help! And they did.

This morning, I’m saying yes to another cup of coffee, and then to planning my morning. I’ve got to procure a birthday present for Marks niece, and get some shopping chores done before we go to her birthday party up in Edmond. Tonight we have band rehearsal. Still no name, and August 2nd is getting closer!

The countdown is on till FamilyPalooza 2014. Emails and FB group posts are flying. It’ll be here soon and we are all frothy with anticipation.

I say yes to the froth and yes to the coffee and watering my garden. I say yes to birthdays and music tonight.

YES YES YES!

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Wheeeee!

Our Videos Are Here! Our Videos Are Here!

Did you feel the energy on social media yesterday? I was in and out and not in front of a computer so I didn’t get to watch it unfold on everyone’s page like I wanted to. It’s so exciting! I was so happy to see the announcement and so honored that National LTYM used my photo to do it! YAY~

And terrifying.

It’s one thing to stand on a stage, being backed by support, and speak your truth to a room full of strangers. We’ve had rehearsals and we’ve had discussions and you feel, actually FEEL the energy and support as you tell your story. It’s a wildly transformative experience.

However, it’s a horse of another feather to have your story posted on YouTube and have a global audience. It’s completely different and nerve wracking and scary as shit to hear your own voice, to see your face and re-live the moment that you barely really remember from all those weeks ago.

What will the response be? Will someone be hurt by the words? Will people be mean on the comments? Will anyone watch or care at all?

It’s like peeling back the band-aid too early. We’re all a little gooey and tender yesterday…today.

I’m proud of our shows. All 32 of them. I haven’t begun to listen to them yet, but I can’t wait.

Tomorrow is another day working the concession booth at the US Sr. Open golf tourney up at Oak Tree.

Tuesday I worked. It was maybe about as fun as when Trish and Gabe and I went to Wakarusa and woke up into 100 degree weather. Except without the music, without the crazy camping neighbors that we fed, without the river and the hippy chicks shaving each other’s legs. Without the eclectic vibe of every stinky pot-selling hula-hooping glow in the dark ball swinging feral child on the planet surrounding us. Without any of the fun stuff.

Tomorrow however, I’ve get to work with friends who have signed up for this gig with me and that’ll be fun. I’ve got several GS Alumnae signed up too and I worry about them but it will all work out fine. We were super slow on Tuesday, and in fact, over staffed with what we had. The actual tourney begins today, so hopefully that will pick up the pace a bit. I dread it though, I’ll tell ya that. Tuesday it was over 100 degrees in that tent and I kept drinking power aid and water etc but by the time I got back to my car about 4:30 pm, I had the worst headache and nausea ever. I drove straight home, walked into the house and directly into a cold shower. Mark took me out to get some dinner then I came home, put on my cool night gown and laid down on the bed under the ceiling fan with the a/c blowing on me. I was asleep by 7pm.

I just kept muttering “it’s for Girl Scouts. it’s for Girl Scouts.”

The thing that makes me super happy?

No work this weekend. AND this time next week?

I’ll be waking up at the lake, surrounded by family.

WHEEEEEEE!!!!

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