"I Open at the Close"

Thanks to everyone that offered a kind word from my bummer post last week. I'm a constant work in progress. It's a fact.

This week I have some exciting stuffs going on in Penny Lane. I have been waiting and looking for the right position to open up in the school system for some time now. Aside from creepy men making off-collar remarks to me I am not happy in my company any longer. It's been a long time building up and boiling over.

I have interviewed once before for a special education position at the school my husband works. A long time county employee, who was overlooked prior, was given the position. There is something in the works currently for a similar position. Last week I went to the Board of Ed to take a test and I was one of 25 people there. There was a mini-interview afterwards. They made me wait and be the very last interviewed. I was slightly peeved at being last called but after I sat down found out why. I was the highest scored in the class. I "blew them away" they said. "Made it look SO easy" they also said.

I don't want to give too much away so I will just say that other things are in the works and maybe/hopefully I will have some good news soon to share.

In completely unrelated, but equally exciting news:

Today is the release date of Lego Harry Potter Years 1-4. I have been waiting for this game for about a year now! Excited to stop by my electronics store and purchase this one tonight!

♪ "I've Stumbled Here, Failed to Make It Mine.." ♪

I try to keep Penny Lane light and fluffy. You know, life, at times, isn’t so light and fluffy. I’m finding that we, you and I, need to have a heart to heart. Mostly because I am carrying something that I need help to shoulder and I find that Penny Lane always lends a helping hand.

I have not been myself as of late. I have always had a “weight issue”. Join the club right? I have always been plump. I fluctuate, sometimes more and sometimes less. The thing is, I have always felt really crappy about me. I never feel comfortable in my skin. Two years ago I joined Weight Watchers with my best friend and I lost about 42 pounds I still didn’t feel comfortable in me. I looked better, yes, but I guess it really just all starts from within.

Lately, I have been really down about me. I have gained back about 15 of the original 42 lost and I have tried to get back on WW twice. I just end up quitting for one reason or the other. Lately, I don’t want to look in the mirror, I don’t want to go out with friends, I don’t want to meet new friends, I stress and am constantly at war with my mind because I feel like crap about ME. About how I look.

When I do go out, I notice people, of all kinds, going about their business. They look so at peace with themselves. They are comfortable in their own skin and I just wish and think to myself: How do you get there? How does one achieve that? And most importantly, why can’t I?

Today I was speaking to a foreign co-worker and he told me that he was coming to town in August and he thinks I should lose about ten pounds before he gets here. I think he was trying to be funny. I didn’t laugh. I was angry at him. I really don’t think that is proper work place conversation, not to mention, it's none of his business, number one, and number two, it hurt me.

I cried in my work loo and I feel like shit even more.

A few months ago I was reading a fellow bloggie buds blog and it was harshly judging plump folks and the severely overweight. I left no comment because, as a member of plump, I don’t judge. I try to always find the beauty in EVERYONE.

The funny thing is, most times I can’t find it in me.
*lyrics from Plump by Hole

Shower Cake

yeah, that was interesting....

WTF Weddings and The Law...

I have two WTF thoughts for you to chew on today.

Firstly: Four Weddings...and Three Bridal showers.....AND Countless Engagement Parties

I am at the age where everyone I know is now deciding to get hitched. I had FIVE weddings this summer. Thankfully, I declined one (which was out of state) but I still have four others (three out of state) all in a matter of four weeks. I am so sick of weddings. I actually hate weddings. I didn't even like my own wedding. It's a big mess. I'm not your traditional female (as a lot of you already know) so I didn't own a countdown to my big day and I didn't want the big song and dance. If others do, good on them, but not for me. I wanted a small gig. People who actually KNEW my hubs and I, who cared about us to be there.

This Saturday I am attending a bridal shower. I have to make the cake and I made the invites to help out. I was required by marital law. Since I purchased all of the cake supplies and invite supplies, plus time spent doing both I decided that a twenty dollar electric wine opener from their registry was gift enough. I already have to purchased them an expensive wedding gift and pay travel and hotel expenses AND take a day off of work to attend their wedding extravaganza.

So yesterday I get home to find ANOTHER Bridal shower invite. Hubs cousin. Out of state. ON A SUNDAY.
Seriously people. A sunday. Some of us work.
My husbands brother is also getting married. Out of state. On a Sunday.

Talked to my Bestie about this sort of thing. I realized, after the engagement party, the bridal shower AND the wedding you have invested THREE gifts for the couple. Plus hotel and travel fare if it's out of state. When does it give?? What are your theories on this? Any suggestions? I am struggling for some ideas here now that I am supposedly required to buy ANOTHER shower gift.

Second: Ignorance.
Yes, I'm going to put this out there because it really just pisses me off. I am sick of hearing about folks who are hit or rough handled by the police on the news. Now before you start fuming, I'm not talking about Rodney King here.. I mean, if you are breaking the law and a police man stops you...and you start pushing and shoving him, throwing rocks at him, and or PUNCH him, I'm sorry but if he knocks you around a bit to get your ass under control then YES....you deserve this.

This morning I got to watch a replay in slow motion of two young girls who were stopped by a policeman and after he asked them politely to stop doing whatever it was they were doing they started screaming in his face, shoved him several times and then a friend jumped in and shoved him in his face. Well, he slapped her and then proceeded to cuff her. I'm sorry people but I think it was justified. Lets not sit around in shock and stare at the instant replay and ask "Why?"

Control yourselves folks and own up to your own responsibilities.
Any WTF thoughts you have to share??
I think I feel a little better now that these thoughts are out in the open...Thanks guys ♥

Five Songs That Remind Me of My Best Friend

Top 5 songs that make you think of your best friend.
I am totally going to use more than one friend because I love this weeks topic.
My Bestie is The Mrs over at Trying Our Best. We met back in 1998. Fresh into college, we both got a position in the Financial Aid Department of our college, discovered we shared the birth day and personality quirks and it was love at first sight. It is an odd connection we share, technically we are very alike and actually we are nothing alike. We could go for months without speaking and then randomly decide to call one another and talk for like three hours. It's just how we roll.
So to end my rambles: Five songs that make me think of my best friend:
1. Bright Lights-Matchbox Twenty- Bestie moved to NY :(
2. Faith-George Michael-Both big fans of GM. Both worked at Suncoast and would listen to The Best of GM every, single, working day.
3. Fly-Lenny Kravitz- This was popular for like two summers and in those two summers we spent a lot of time just driving around and getting lost.
4. I Will Wait for You-Hootie & The Blowfish-We both loved Hootie and this song was always one of her favorites.
5. Jennifers Body-Hole-This went on a mixed TAPE that I made for her early on. It meant something then and means something now *wink*
The other friend is more like a member of my family. Rusty. We have lived just down the street from each other our whole lives-even after four major location moves. Kind of like fate.
I have known him forever and he is still a staple in my daily life.
1. Breakdown-Mariah Carey-R&B hit from high school.
2. MMMBop-Hanson-He probably wouldn't admit this, but we BOTH totally loved this song and that cd when it was released in the 1990's.
3. Tik Tok-Ke$ha- Only because he loathes this song, as I did. Then it kind of grew on me because every time I get in my car it's on the radio. It started as a joke during the loathing stage. Everytime this song comes on the radio I recieve a text message with just this written: TIK TOK ♥
Eventually, we both started to like the song. After intense overplay, we now loathe it but I still get those text messages daily.
4. Baby, Baby-Bieber-Again, another one of those Ke$ha stories. Rusty teases me that I have Bieber Fever. I didn't even know who Bieber was for a long time. A few times while out and about a song has come on and he makes me listen to it. I actually like the beat of Baby, Baby and it will now forever be associated to Rus.
5. It's Your Love-Tim Mcgraw and Faith Hill-This was another huge hit during high school. I took one of those courses as an elective where you have to carry a 5lb baby doll around and plan your wedding and learn how to write a resume, etc. Well we had to marry someone from class and price our wedding and take turns with the fake baby. Of course since Rus and I were/are like peas and carrots I picked him and this was our "fake" wedding song. Funny aside: I hate this song. Never even liked it. It was just the love song hit of that time frame.

Blue Bird Crafting-A MUST!

Last year I posted pictures of some hand made quilted bags that my Bestie's Ma made for me and a friend. She does such amazing work. I have the priveledge of owning two hand made bags (a spring bag and an all year bag) and a quilt that she made me as a wedding gift. To say I LOVE this woman's work is an understatement. I am so amazed each time I see a new creation from her. She is truly brilliant when it comes to quilting and I am very blessed to own some of her pieces and I must say I adore each of them. After four years of marriage I still use my Wedding quilt, every, single evening and I am currently rocking my all year bag :)

I am very excited to announce that after some planning and cohoots between my Bestie and her Ma she has opened her very own Etsy shop featuring some of her amazing work, at some pretty great prices :)

If you are a lover of handmades and/or bags please go check it out. You won't be sorry!
(click on sign to visit!)

How Did We Come To This?

Yesterdays post was about my excitement for New and Improved Wilton Courses. I mentioned that my favorite flower was a Calla Lily and Wilton has decided to incorporate a gumpaste Calla in their new Gumpaste course.

While we are on the subject, funny story that wouldn't quite fit in yesterday but deserves further mention:

I do not own a green thumb. Nor hand, nor arm...nothing. I can't grow anything. Since I purchased a home about four years ago I have tried to plant pretty flowers but they always end up never coming out or they do come out and die. Flowers and gardening are not for me.

So one day while shopping at Lowes I came across bulbs for Calla Lily's. They seemed easy enough to deal with. Right? Sure...I bought six of them. I went home and planted them-Three and three on either side of my walk way up to my porch. A year later know what happened??

They bloomed!!!!

I was SO excited!! Plus they were simply gorgeous. They are so clean and classy and just beautiful. I was very proud of myself. The first thing I ever managed to grow happened to be my favorite flower. Also my Ma informed me that the Lily's would return each year and didn't need to be replaced.

Well winter came, the plants died out and eventually a new spring began. My husband went out early spring to clean up the yard and flower beds. Weed and plant a few things. A few days after this I came home to find some new plants sitting on our porch, waiting to be planted. I questioned Hubs.

Hubs: "I bought them to put on both sides of the walkway to the porch".

Me: "Why? I have Calla Lily's planted there, they will come up every year"
Hubs: "Really? I didn't see them?"

Me: "Because they have not bloomed yet silly"

Hubs: "Well when I was weeding I noticed that we had potatoes growing in there so I pulled them out of the ground and threw them in the woods. Isn't that crazy? Potatoes! How did they get there?"

Me: "You idiot. Those are BULBS. Bulbs of Calla Lily's!!"

Oooops. Yes, so I no longer have Calla's in my front yard thanks to my Husband.
Good thing he teaches Maths :)

New and Improved!

News! I am in the planning process of a huge craft project involving myself, Amber (remember Amber/Ashley??) and her sister Jessica. I am super excited about what we have in works. I will post pictures after I have something completed. Right now it's just blue prints and ideas.

We have a group meeting scheduled to tie up loose ends and get the ball rolling. Also a little shopping field trip to AC Moore. My husband calls this "Old biddy time". I'm not even thirty but I guess I have been an "old biddy" since before high school. ♥

While doing some research on supplies for our project I came across this!

I immediately begain hyperventilating because you all know how much I heart cake decor. I completed the entire Wilton course process last year and they have a special running at my local craft shop for 50% off for Wilton grads! Plus, I already have just about every tip and tool needed so this time around I wouldn't be spending tons of money on supplies.

They have "New and Improved" Course one. Even though the basic, basics are gone over the first few classes I wouldn't mind going back. Get a refresh, learn some new flowers and ideas such as:

Dimensional Decorating
Pompom Flower,
Filling and Icing a Cupcake (I already know how to do this but I kind of figured it out on my own)
Guidelines for Elementary Cake Design
Ribbon Rose
Guidelines for Decorating Your Cake

The Gumpaste course is also "New and Improved".
Although the only change I noticed was they removed that god awful "Fantasy Flower" and replaced it with my very favorite flower: The Calla Lily.

I don't think I like Gumpaste and fondant enough to retake this course just for the one flower so I am going to teach myself the technique for the Lily.

I have a cake order for a Bridal shower on June 19 that has to be deco'ed with Daisy's. I may incorporate a few Calla Lily's as well.

♪ All Summer Long ♪

Tuesday Tunes: Week 135
Yesterday was the unofficial start to summer.

What new releases are you looking forward to this summer? Jimmy Eat World. Don't know if it will be out for the summer but it's pretty much the only thing I am looking forward to musically.

What music makes you think of summer? -Frankie Lymon and the Teenagers

-Dion and the Belmonts

-Any 50's and 60's mix...I always play these at Summer BBQ's

-Of All The Gin Joints In All The World-Fall Out Boy

-Anything off of Take This to Your Grave by Fall Out Boy-big soundtrack to the summer I worked Warped Tour with Fall Out Boy

-Always Be-Jimmy Eat World

What's the best song you can think of to play with the top down/or windows down on a hot summer day?

-Clarity, No Sensitivity, Here it Goes, Always Be-Jimmy Eat World

-Graduate or Blinded-Third Eye Blind

-The Twist-Frightened Rabbit

-Anything by Counting Crows

-Lately, Hey Soul Sister-Train

-You're So Last Summer-Taking Back Sunday

-Stokholm Syndrome, Supermassive-Muse

A Little Something to Read..

A few more reviews of some great books I have found along my journey.

With the Old Breed: At Peleliu and Okinawa by Eugene Sledge

Why I Picked This Book: Recommended by a friend.

My Review: I love to read about history. I also love war memoirs and have read quite a few of them. I can honestly say it is probably one of the BEST war memoirs I have ever read. Sledge paints such a vivid picture and this memoir is written like no other I have read. It is more straight forward, honest and heartbreaking. If you like history or memoirs this will be a good one to pick up.

Othello-William Shakespeare

Why I Picked This Book: I love classics and pick them up as I go along. This one I found for a few bucks in a bin.

My Review: Yes, you read this correctly. Othello. Such an amazing tale of JEALOUSY and what it can do to a persons mind and soul and how far they will let it control them and others.

Bloodroot-Amy Greene

Why I Picked This Book: While reading my weekly porn: Entertainment Weekly, they had a full page review on this NEW author and the wonders of her first novel. I went to purchase it the very next day.

My Review: Bloodroot was a very "southern" book. It tells the tale of three generations of women who live in the Smoky Mountains and their struggle with a horrid history that keeps repeating itself during each woman's life. The book is divided into a few parts that are narrated by a different character. Each character has a "voice". It is written as they would speak and this tone creates a connection with each character. The book is epic and tragic. I couldn't believe this was novel number one for Amy Greene and I can't wait to read more from her.

Next-Michael Crichton

Why I Picked This Book: Simply because I love, love, love MC.

My Review: Although Jurassic Park is my very favorite MC book, Next was pretty intense! It was fast paced, super smart and had that element that I seem to favor in books: Each chapter was written from a different character. Everyone had their own story and they all intertwined in the end. I have recommended this to a few folks and was given "the look" because the subject matter of Next is genetics and DNA. Gene patents and genetic testing. Don't judge folks. If you can keep up it's intense and such a great read!

The Doctors Wife-Elizabeth Brundage

Why I Picked This Book: Read the back while waiting in line at Walmart. It sounded interesting so I purchased it.

My Review: This book wasn't very deep but if you are looking for a quick, no-thinking-necessary read full of scandal then look no further. It is about a Doctor that performs abortions at a free women's clinic and neglects his family, his wife becomes involved in an affair with a man whose wife is a religious freak. Lots of suspense, threats against the clinic and the doctors wife and family and twists and turns. Pretty decent read.

Anyone else care to share a really great read they have found this year??
Happy Reading!

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