Monday, July 31, 2006

High School: Not for the faint of heart

I know this sounds stupid since I'm JUST 28, but I'm feeling old lately. And I'm telling you the first thing to go is the metabolism. I'm ultra sensitive right now because we're going to Vegas next week (where I want to look cute) and The Reunion is coming up quickly. So I'm really working hard at the gym, and I've cut back on my food a lot. I'm serious! No cheating! Well, except for the weekends... ;-) But I'm not having a single drink during the week. I swear!

So right now Ryan and I are sitting on the couch. Me blogging. Him playing Xbox. Both of us doing facials. Shhh! Don't tell him I told you.

I haven't been taking pictures lately. I know it frustrates Ryan. He's always got a million hobbies going on and he's excited that I've finally found something I'm passionate about. But I'm just out of ideas. Am I too black and white for something so artsy? I'm hoping that my new lens will get me going again.

Wanna hear some fun Reunion Committee stories? Oh man, do I have stories. I'll try to be nice here because I really do like these girls. OK, so the biggest shocker of the Committee is our nice Mormon girl. She's been divorced already! I just can't believe someone my age can have 4 kids, have been divorced, and then remarried. Sounds like she's got a good one this time though. The REALLY fun story is actually one from when we were in high school. I just had never heard it before. Just goes to show that I was SO far outside the 'cool' group that I didn't hear a whopper like this. So there's this girl on our committee who was THE popular girl. Blonde. Cheerleader. Would go out of her way to make someone else feel bad about themselves. She was known for being mean. Well ANYWAY, it turns out that in high school this girl left campus w/ a friend one day for lunch and they hit the Taco Bell drive-thru. While waiting in line the two of them got into an arguement with a girl outside the car, and proceeded to beat the crap out of her THROUGH the open window. Well, the police were called and they showed up at school and arrested our poor Cheerleader and Cheerleader #2 for assult. And hauled them out of school in handcuffs in their cheerleader outfits and all. Now how come I never heard THAT story before?

The really interesting thing in all this is that there's this girl on the committee who was a cheerleader and one of the most popular girls in school. I don't think I ever talked to her back then, but I definitely knew who she was. Well she confided in a few of us over drinks one night that when the movie Mean Girls came out, she was terrified that she'd been one of the Mean Girls in high school. Isn't that weird? Just goes to show that even the popular kids went through their own things in high school.

OK, off to clean this crap off my face.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Updates from the Bad Blogger

I'm not kidding. The heat is really getting me down. Any of you ever been in Arizona for the heat season? You think your 95 has anything on our 118? No sir. We run from air conditioning to car. When we get to the car we burn the back of our legs and the steering wheel is too hot to touch. And by the time the air finally gets going you're too done to do anything the whole rest of the day. And forget enjoying the evening air. It doesn't get any cooler then about 95 at night right now.

Blah blah blah. Bitch bitch bitch. I really do have good things to talk about. So here they are:

First my birthday. OK, so Ryan got me the NICEST lens for my camera. Oh you just wait what I'm going to do with that thing. I have plans! So besides that I got lunch at my most favorite lunch place by work. Then he picked me up from work with a handful of sunflowers. Then it was off to dinner. I had no idea where we were going. Well, it turns out Ryan found a restaurant by going to the Arizona Republic's webpage and looking up what was rated 'Most Romantic Restaurant'. Oh. my. god.

We went to T. Cooks at the Royal Palms. Just to give you a hint of what this place is like, the President stays here when he comes to town. And the food was so amazing. I left there so stuffed, but we took care of that by taking a walk around the Palms. It is a gorgeous Spanish Villa where only the rich and famous stay. *sigh* Heaven.

We are travelaholics right now. We were in Flagstaff (boooo!) last weekend, then camping this weekend, and in a few weeks we're off to Vegas. VEGAS! We're going w/ our friends Matt and Rebecca. I've been practicing up on my Blackjack and I'm all ready to lose some money. Camping this weekend should be fun, well, with the exception of the fact that we still have our tent. The leaky one. Expect pleasant stories from that trip.

OK, off to enjoy what's waiting for me on my DVR. Thank you for visiting even though I've been a bad blogger and should have my hand slapped.


Tuesday, July 18, 2006

A Series of Unfortunate Events

For the past few days I've been in Flagstaff talking to high school girls about being an engineer (DON'T DO IT!). My work (I love you company!) actually paid for my trip up there, and I adore Flagstaff so I've been looking forward to this for weeks. Oh, and Ryan's 5-day coincided with the trip, so he and the dogs came along too! All the makings for a perfect get-away from the 116 temp in Phx. (And for all you people who live in places with 'record' heat in the 'deep 90s', I have this to say: TRY 116 DURING MONSOON SEASON!)

The thing that makes Flagstaff so wonderful is not just the great weather and the beautiful forest; its the people! If you walk around downtown strangers will chat with you. They'll pet your dogs and instead of giving you directions they'll show you where it is you want to go. Flagstaff people are the best. Or so we thought.

The bad stuff started happening as soon as we got up there. I took the puppies up to the hotel room and Karma immediately peed all over the room. Nice. Then Ryan and I get ready for a ride (of course we had to bring our mountain bikes to take advantage of the awesome trails and the gorgeous weather!). Well, while getting ready, I knocked my hand against my handlebars and managed to knock a freaking diamond out of my wedding ring. We never found it. So on we go with the ride... Well my brakes weren't working, so we stopped to work on my bike. We were on a main road, and while we're standing there a car full of punk kids fully SPIT on me as they drove by. They spit. on. me. We rode around South Flagstaff for about an hour looking for that car. I had the police number already keyed in ready to push 'send'. I was going to press assault charges. But we never found them.

Last night we went out with Craig, Ryan's old roommate. We went to a place called Flag Brewing company, had a few drinks, and caught up. After we heard all about Craig's new successful business, he asked Ryan about his job. Ryan loves his job, but he's not a bragger. He just answered Craig's questions, and it really is obvious that he's proud of his profession and the work they do. Well.... while they're talking, I notice this 50ish guy basically leaning over Craig's shoulder not even trying to hide that he's listening. He looked like he wanted to be included in the conversation and I started to feel sorry for this lonely looking guy. But then things went bad. Really, really bad.

From what I can tell, the guy was in about 10 drinks deeper than I was (which is saying something). Out of nowhere he starts to go off on Ryan. Physically leaning in to the conversation and telling my Ryan that he needed his ego deflated. That he was sick of firefighters and their attitudes when all they did was get paid to go grocery shopping (so they shouldn't eat their entire 24-hr shift?), get paid to workout (um, Ryan doesn't get to workout on shift), and that they got to eat their meals for free on the taxpayers' dime (a HUGE misconception about ffs. I can gaurantee that Ryan pays for every single piece of food that goes in his mouth). But that wasn't enough! Even though Ryan and Craig were trying to just deflect what he was saying in a nice way, and trying to ignore him, he just kept digging! Well I (and my beers) had had enough. And I told him off. Loudly. Accused him of trying to pick a fight, told him to shut the f up, and you can guess how that all escalated... Eventually the bartender had to kick him out, almost forceably.

OK, I know that he wanted to get a rise out of someone, and he did just that. We were shaken up the whole rest of the night, and my poor Ryan, who wouldn't DREAM of being egotistical about what he does, spent the rest of the night asking me if he was egotistical like the guy said. The whole thing just makes me so mad.

The rest of the night was kind of ruined, but we tried to make the most of it. It just was kind of a shock to realize that Flagstaff is just like every other place: full of assholes.

Also, t-minus 5 and a half hours until my birthday. Don't forget prettily wrapped presents and lots of chocolate and flowers!

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Free to a Good Home

I'm feeling really sad today. I feel horrible and I pretty much hate myself.

The first 2 pets Ryan and I had together were Melody and Harmony. Ball pythons. Melody was about a year old when we got her, and Harmony was a brand new baby that curled up in a ball the size of a tennis ball when you picked her up. When we were in college Mel and Harm hung out with us while we were watching movies, we draped them around our shoulders when we were hanging out, and when the apartment building caught on fire they were the first things I thought of.

Then things changed. We bought a house. We got a dog. Then another. The snakes moved from the living room to the den. They didn't get to come out as much anymore because of the dogs, and letting them roam around was out of the question. They only eat every 10 days or so, but our new house is about 35 minutes from the snake food store so it became a hassle.

Recently we had to admit to ourselves that we are failures. I cry when I read articles about people who take their pets to shelters because they just don't fit into the family's life anymore. I give money to charities that take in these animals. I even stopped talking to a guy at work that I used to hang out with specifically because he gave up on a dog he'd adopted. And here we are. We failed those snakes. They didn't get enough attention. We didn't give them the best cage they could have. We're failures.

The snakes really are Ryan's. I knew he'd been thinking about trying to find them a new, caring owner for a while. Months. He's brought it up to me to get my feelings on it many times. I had a hard time saying anything about it because I knew we'd failed. And I honestly felt that someone else might love them and pay more attention to them. So that's the answer? So if making the choice to find them a new home is the best thing we could do for them at this point, I should feel good about that right?

I didn't know Ryan had placed an ad in the paper. The phone started ringing yesterday early. They were people looking for pets for their kids (not gonna happen!), a guy looking for 'breeding' snakes (my girls would be whores!), people who didn't speak english well, people who wanted to add to their already large collections.... but the point was all these people really wanted snakes. The call that stuck out was a nice younger guy who said his dad had told him about the ad and knew he was looking for snakes. He already had one ball python (who he told us wanted to make the journey to get her new siblings, but she was getting ready to shed. that's a good owner!), and he was in the process of building a huge enclosure for his 'kids'. The ball he already had is currently living in a cage that is so well full of hiding places that he says he actually has to take everything out of the tank to find her. She also gets to go out w/ Manny and his girlfriend for shopping trips and errands. He obviously had read a lot about balls and really understood what it took to be a good owner.

So our girls left us yesterday. We offered pillow cases for them to travel in, but Manny's girlfriend insisted on holding them so they'd be more secure. I had to hide in the back room because I started crying. I ran out to see them one last time and Manny offered to give us his phone number so we could check on them. We declined. As they left, Manny's girlfriend told me that Melody and Harmony (she used their names!) would love their new home. And I think she's right.

We failed those snakes. And I feel horrible. Just writing about it now I'm crying. And the newspaper ad is running until Tuesday so the calls keep coming in. I finally changed the answering machine and stopped answering the phone. So about twice an hour I hear from the machine: "Hi. If you're calling about the ad, the snakes have already found a new home. Thank you for calling." Insult to injury. I must have heard that about 20 times since yesterday morning and every time I do I feel horrible. The empty space in the front room where they used to be. The nightmare I had last night even though I know they went to a better home. Its such a good thing that we don't have Manny's phone number because we'd have them back already and that's not what's best.

I don't know what else to say. I'll never feel good about how it turned out. Never.

This is Melody. She's such a pretty girl and calm. A few years back she got into it with her 'food' and we ended up paying for surgery to fix a cut she had on her head. She never got nervous with us and never once rolled in a ball to protect herself. She trusted us I think. She seemed to love hanging out with us on the couch. She would stay still through a whole movie.

This is Harmony. We had her from a little tiny baby. She's kind of blue here because she's getting ready to shed. Don't you love her little ET guys on her markings? She's fiesty and athletic. She escaped more than once. My little houdini.

Sunday, July 02, 2006


This weekend's photography.

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    I'm Amanda. I'm an engineer in an industry full of men, a professional wedding and family portrait photographer, a firefighter's wife, a traveler, and a dogMa.

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