Crazy or Brave?

All my life, I’ve wanted to be brave.

You know: a sword-wielding, smart-talking, strong, confident woman that’s like John Wayne toilet paper– rough, tough, and don’t take crap off nobody!

I’ve read books, watched movies, and seen television shows that highlighted truly brave women. Their bravery came in various forms. Whether it be Hester Prynne walking around with the red A upon her breast, carrying the weight of her adultery (as well as that pansy-good-for-nothing priest); how Andy wore her ugly pink prom hybrid dress, hand-in-hand with so-much-cuter-than-Blaine Duckie, or Sarah risking it all to get her baby brother back from the Goblin King, Jareth.

 

Martha Jones walked out into a balcony on the moon, without fear of being killed by its oxygen-sucking powers. (Although, if David Tennant was there, egging me on, I’d probably do it too).

 

Hermione willing followed her best friends into a trap door leading who knows where, and risked “getting killed… or worse, expelled.”

 

Esther risked her life to save her people.

 

Who else got chills when Eowyn ripped of her mask at the end of Return of the King, stabbed the Nazguland subsequently got teary-eyed when she proclaimed proudly: “I am no man!”

 

Would I have the courage to do the same? Granted, the likelihood of these opportunities coming up is slim to none (although I do think that I heard the distant whirr of the TARDIS nearby…) but still. Could I do so?

 

Honestly, I’ve never been in a situation where I felt I was truly brave. I mean, I’ve watched my sister go into the hospital twice (and that was terrifying!), but I didn’t feel brave. When 9/11 happened I was absolutely petrified that it was the end of the world. And just not too long ago, when I heard a scratching at the door, I almost peed my pants!

 

Thinking about moments like those make me have so much more respect for those in the Armed Forces, firemen, police officers, EMTs, and doctors (yeah, I don’t do blood). When I reflect on my past, I cringe at how seemingly cowardly I have been.

 

But, then I have to remember that bravery can be shown in so many different ways.

 

  • I stood up for myself when people would pick on me for being a Christian.
  • I also told a guy that if he didn’t stop messing with my sister, I’d mess him up (I don’t think that technically falls under WWJD…)
  • I was a lifeguard for six years. (And let me tell ya, I HAD to be brave watching those little kids swimming around with nothing more than inflatable arm bands to hold them up.)
  • A girl wanted to fight me in junior high (for no reason) so I met her outside and she ran away before anyone had to swing.
  • I went to a foreign country alone with my sister! (Not that my sister is anything to be fearful of…it was just our first trip without our parents!)

 

So I guess what matters is that I’m brave in the little things, so when big things come, I can be better at handling them, right? I know I have a long way to go (those that know me personally are saying, “Uh, doi!”) but don’t discount the little acts of the bravery: sitting next to someone others deem “unlovable”, moving out on your own, or taking a new job. Its those little acts of courage that will make us all brave in the end.

 

“No matter how long you train someone to be brave, you never know if they are or not until something real happens.” ~ Veronica Roth, Insurgent

 

“It was times like these when I thought my father, who hated guns and had never been to any wars, was the bravest man who ever lived.”  ~ Harper Lee, To Kill A Mockingbird

Try It Tuesday…Fail

With payday not til tomorrow and barely any food in the pantry, I decided for today’s Try It Tuesday I’d do some more nail art instead of trying to cook something. After all, Halloween is tomorrow and I should do my Halloween nail art before the season passes.

Unfortunately, my nails were a great, big, fat fail.

A few months ago, I saw this pin on Pinterest:

“Ooooh! We’re coming to pick your noooose!”

So, I went to Sally’s Beauty Supply and bought some glow-in-the-dark nail polish. I finally decided to use it today. I painted the glowing polish first and then used my dotting tool to make eyes and a mouth for the ghost.

Spooky!

After my nail dried, I put it up against a bulb to let it the polish start working and then turned off the light. It really did glow! But, I tried to get a picture of it and it turned out like this:

Look how well it glows! Not.

Fail.

My other nails, I painted orange. I thought I’d make Jack-o-Latern nails….Yeah…Not so much.

I think I’m going to tell everyone my 3-year-old niece did these…

I don’t care for them.

On another nail, I thought I’d make it just a natural pumpkin; you know the kind with the stem and leaves. It just ended up looking like a peach.

Happy Halloween! Here’s a piece of fruit.

Sigh…

I’m ready for November.

On a brighter note, Huff the Hubs had his own version of Try It Tuesday! He made Tori Don and Miso soup! It was yummy!

Who needs to fly to Japan when you’ve got a gourmet cook in your own home?

Weird Weather

Hurricane Sandy.

A blizzard in West Virginia.

Weird weather is making the Northeast its biotch this month and I don’t care for it. (Stay safe Aberdeen peeps!) Here in Oklahoma, we have our fair share of inclement crap-your-pants-scary weather. And normally, it’s all year round.

As far back as I can remember, Oklahoma has always been the place where the weather shiz seems to always hit the fan. When I was about six or seven, I remember leaving not being able to trick-or-treat because of rain. My parents took us to a church that was having a Fall Festival. We stayed for maybe an hour or two.

On the drive home, I remember getting scared that water was going to seep into our Aerostar. In the short amount of time that we were getting candy, the rain had flooded our streets. I can still see in my memory a man walking wading down the street, the water to his waist!

I’m not much of a believer in global warming, but over the past decade, we’ve seen some crazy things here in the SoonerState that it, at times, unexplainable. Here’s the proof:

May 3, 1999

I was in eighth grade in 1999. My mom, dad, and sister were at a National Honors Society event and my other sister was away at college at OBU. I was home alone. The storm clouds were rolling in, but I thought nothing of it. I opened the window on the screen door and turned on the TV. In a matter of minutes, (and sans severe weather tie) Mike Morgan said the seemingly calm rain storm had magnified into an earth-shattering wave of tornadic activity. The sky went a greenish-black and I thought I was going to pee myself. You have to remember, this was a time before cell phones were mainstream, so only the super rich had them. I had no way of contacting my family to know what to do. We lived in an area that wasn’t ever really affected by tornados. Finally, my family came home and we decided to go to our friends’ house five blocks over because they had a storm shelter. It took us about twenty minutes to get there.

After white knuckling it and getting to safety, we waited out the storm. The next morning, I was shocked when I saw our neighborhood. The massive pine tree in my neighbor’s yard had literally been uprooted and was lying in the middle of the street. And, what’s worse, nearly every neighborhood in Moore looked like this:

Moore, OK on May 4, 1999

Thousands of people were without homes. My aunt and uncle were a part of that. I can’t imagine how it must’ve felt. The video below is absolutely nail biting. The music doesn’t help. But hearing David Payne say: “I’m too close, I’m too close!” is terrifying. If you live in Oklahoma, you know that he survived and is still out chasing storms. But, looking back, it’s like watching a scary movie; Is he going to make it?!

 

Christmas Eve Blizzard of 2009

Ah, Christmas. My favorite holiday. This particular Christmas was very important to me. It was my first Christmas with my then-boyfriend, now-husband. I couldn’t wait to share my family’s traditions with him. When the snow started in the afternoon, everyone thought: “Aw, how pretty!”

By 3:00, everyone thought: “HOLY CRAP, WE’RE GONNA DIE!”

A car stuck in the six feet of snow, piled up along the roadway.

The snow was relentless. Roads were closed, candlelight services were cancelled, and the power went out soon after. My sister, mom, dad, and I were stuck in the house with no power on Christmas Eve. It was (literally) freezing inside the house. Luckily, my mother had a cast iron skillet, so we were able to make chili cheese dip in the fireplace four our Christmas Eve supper. Unluckily, we all had to sleep in the living room so we could be close to the fire. I say unluckily because my father snores sounds like he’s choking on his tongue while he sleeps. My sister and I got no sleep (Mom’s used to it) and woke up to still no electricity. Thankfully, Future Hubs’ Jeep is four-wheel drive, so he was able to rescue me and take me to his parents’ house for Christmas breakfast. At noon, my mom texted to tell me the electricity was FINALLY back on. That is one Christmas I will not forget!

Thunder Snow!

In January 2001, there was yet another big snow storm. It wasn’t as bad as the one in 2009, but it was memorable. Why, you ask? Because a new word was added to the Okie-vernacular…Thunder Snow.

What is thunder snow? Its just that: thunder when its snowing. When I first heard Mike Morgan say it, I thought, “That guy is ridiculous.” But turns out, it really is a real thing!

Fan Girl Friday

This Sunday is Matt Smith’s (AKA, The Doctor’s) 30th birthday! Look what the cast and crew in Cardiff surprised Matt with:

“Its a bunch of wibbly, wobbly, cake and frosting stuff.”

Click the link to watch the video! I LOVE the masks they made! How freaky would it be to walk into a room of a bunch of you’s? It’d be like the Seven Potters scene from Deathly Hallows! 

And speaking of HP, look at this adorable crochet toad from Little Green! This would be a great accessory for anyone dressing up like Neville this Halloween:

“Trevor!”

Still stuck on what to be for Halloween? I guarantee you’ll get major nostalgia points from any 90’s kid if you hop over to Temple Shirts and dress up like a contestant from Legends of the Hidden Temple:

Don’t dress like the Orange Iguanas. They never made it past the Q/A.

 

The shirts are made of cotton, guranteed to keep you dry while crawling through the moat and warm during the TempleRun.

And finally, I think I’m going to add these to my Christmas list. Look how precious these mini Chewbacca earrings are:

“Always let the wookie win.”

They’ll go great with my Luke Skywalker shirt.

Call The Midwife (Or, my Downton Abbey Substitute)

With Downton Abbey over and the new season not starting until January 6th (I really hope those Mayans aren’t right about the whole world ending thing. I’d hate to miss the premiere), I’ve been looking for a show to quench my thirst for something British.

True, Sherlock has been commissioned for a third season, but no premiere date has been released.

Doctor Who started in September, but has already taken a mid-season break. He won’t be back until the Christmas special!

What to do? What to do? {Nervously paces and sips Earl Grey}

Wait, what’s that you say, PBS? You’ve got something else for me? And it’s about babies too?!

Yes, from the station that brought you The Vicar of Dibley, Upstairs/Downstairs, and Are You Being Served, PBS has imported a new show bound to make you an anglophile.

Call the Midwife is the story of a young nurse-turned-midwife, Jennifer Lee working in the poor, East End of London in the 1950’s. It’s a semi-coming-of-age tale, as Jennifer has never worked in the slums where women have multiple babies very close together (in the second episode, one woman has 24 children! YOWZA. Not all at once, mind you. She’s not a cat.) Jennifer lives in a convent with two other nurses (though none are nuns) and work round the clock bringing babies into the world. In the third episode, they have a new girl, lovingly referred to as “Chummy” who adds some cheek and geek to the gaggle of girls.

“Jenny Lee” can sometimes be a bit annoying, getting freaked out by some bugs at a patient’s home. But she redeems herself when her heart is warmed by those less fortunate, and sees that the women of the slums truly are the heriones in this tale.

Fair warning: the show is a drama. And by the second half of the first episode, you WILL cry like your entire family has just been hit by a bus. Seriously. And if you don’t, then you’re dead inside and I pity you.

I watched all four episodes (which are on PBS’s website, so there’s no excuse for not being caught up) the other day and by the end of the last one; I was in serious need of a straight jacket or Xanax. Out of both, I decided to just talk to some food about it.

But seriously, you’ve GOT to check this show out. If you love the Brits as much as I do, you’ll definitely go barmy for the birds and blokes on Call the Midwife. And I’m not just taking the mickey out of you.

Wierd Wal-Mart Finds

Since the sneaky, photo-ninja site People of Wal-Mart first emerged in 2009, I’ve become even more aware of the odd, interesting, and downright disturbing things that can go down at my favorite supercenter. Today, during an almost weekly daily trip to Wal-Mart to get some human interaction, I too stumbled upon some peculiar purchasables.

The first item I saw, literally when I walked in the door was this gem:

The “Very Best” of Vanilla Ice….? Really? Is there such a thing?

To which my sister exclaimed: “Remember when my friend Marla bought me that cassette for my birthday?”

I did remember.

And now I wonder what dates me more: that I know who Vanilla Ice was when he first started out, or that I know what a cassette is…?

Later, when we walked further into the trap store, I found these yummy treats:

Does the “glo” refer to what the Yellow #2 does to your skin?

Surely the fine people at Hostess could have thought of a more wholesome name than Glo Balls, right? I mean, these are the makers of down-home American snacks like Twinkies, Ding-Dongs, Ho-Ho’s…Oh…{blushes} er, never mind.

On our way to the checkout, we came across one of the many sections of Halloween costumes.

Evidently they no longer make “man in barrel” or “wine-o” costumes, as those would be too politically incorrect. But with this costume, you can still dress like an alcoholic without making it too offensive:

“Dadgum! I just love that there song by T. Keith! How’s it go…?”

Have you found any awesomely awkward items at your local Wally-World?

Try It Tuesday — Pumpkin Seeds

The other night, Huff the Hubs and I decided to get pumpkins to carve. We were going to go to a local pumpkin patch, but when we got there, it cost $10 a person just to get inside. But with us trying to be gazelles and get out of debt, we couldn’t bring ourselves to it.

Enter Aldi and their $2.99 pumpkins. These gourds are ENORMOUS. I’m talkin’ Cinderella’s carriage big. So after waddling up the stairs, Huff the Hubs did the gross work of carving the top and emptying out the insides.

Don’t be jelly. That hunk of man is ALL mine.

We almost threw the seeds out, but I remembered something I saw on Pinterest, so I had him save them.

The recipe is so simple! Only three ingredients! I love recipes like that–its a lot harder to screw it up.

After you’ve gutted your pumpkin, wash the seeds and let them dry. I left mine out overnight.

The next day, put the seeds into a bowl and pour 2 teaspoons melted butter and a pinch of salt over them. Stir, and then place them on a cookie sheet.

Bake at 300 degrees for 45 minutes and voila! A healthy snack!