Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Weather in the Black Hills has been demented. Yesterday it was about 70 degrees Fahrenheit. The day before it was above 95. Today's forecast is for the upper 80s. And it's been like that most of the summer.

For the most part, that's not a problem. Except for when I want to be outside. Call me a wimpy, but I have no desire to go for a three-mile walk or bike ride (I don't run/jog) in either pouring rain or scorching heat. I'm just not that dedicated. I have, however, been moving more. Not moving like to a new house. Moving like off my butt and on my feet.

For those of you who like to sweat, that probably sounds lazy. I don't like to sweat. I don't like to exercise for no reason. Yeah, I know being healthy is a reason. Just not one that honestly appeals to me. I would much rather be reading a book or knitting socks than walking to the closest stop sign. (I live in a more rural area. The walk to and from the stop sign is my 3 mile round trip.)

My other exercising problem is that I'm a naturally frugal person. I could join a gym and then be guilt-ed into working out, but I don't want to spend that money. Especially since my hubby is retired from the military and we live fairly close to an Air Force base. I could use the base gym for much less than a gym membership downtown or a membership to the local Y. But, then there's that little problem of gas. Do I want to drive all the way to the base just to work out. By myself. When I could just as easily walk to the stop sign and back.

And now we're back to the weather. Full circle.

So I bribe myself. I already mentioned that I'd rather be reading a book or knitting than exercising. Thankfully, there is a fantastic podcast that combines both: CraftLit. Heather, the host, is amazing. She finds some great readers on Librivox and adds her own insight as a former English teacher. I download a few episodes on my iPod and Heather and I make that walk. Every once in awhile, she talks about her vacations to Deadwood, South Dakota, (a mere 40 miles from me) and I'm tempted to drop her an e-mail. Then I remember I'm very behind on the podcast since I didn't hear about it for the longest time and her life has probably changed since the piece I'm listening to. Seriously, I'm on episode 53 and, according to her website, she's recorded number 230-something. Yep, I'm a little behind. And I only listen to CraftLit when I'm exercising outside. So on those pouring rain days, I'm not listening. Neither do I listen on those scorching hot ones.

When I need to "get my move on" those days, I use the Wii. I have a few different Wii games designed for fitness: Wii fit, Yoga and Pilates U, Walk It Out, Zumba. I'm pretty good about doing something at least three days a week. I may not always like it, but I do it.

I'm not sure if it's the "I'd rather be reading" part or the "frugal" part, but even three days a week is a challenge.

Is that just me? Or have I just not found the exercise for me yet? You'd think after 40 years, I would have found something that fits in, but not yet. I'm open to suggestions...


Thursday, August 25, 2011

I've been crafting. A lot.

I have an afghan almost finished and I sewed three tops and a skirt earlier this month. I love to create.

Too bad I'm not writing as much as I should!


Sunday, August 21, 2011

I miss my baby. But I'm really disappointed in her, too.

I had the dubious honor of taking my little girl to college this past week. She's only a few hours away, but she's homesick. Or, rather, she doesn't think college is for her. I'm not sure how a person can tell that after two days and before classes even start, but there you have it.

When I talk to her on the phone, she sounds so sad. So very sad. And that isn't her personality. In fact, she has a smile that you can hear in her voice. She is usually so outgoing and bubbly. She is normally a kid who makes friends easily, yet she's spent every spare moment so far sitting in her dorm. Yes, I realize the upside is that she isn't out partying, but she isn't out doing anything else, either. One of my favorite sounds in the world is her laughter, and I miss it. Like crazy.

I don't understand where she's coming from. I honestly and truly don't.

You see, she's fortunate enough to have this golden opportunity. Due to some circumstances, she has college practically paid for. She is being handed an education right there on a silver platter and she acts like she doesn't want it.

I know I'm biased. I think a college degree is important. Very important. So important, in fact, that I spent a total of 15 years trying to get mine. I won't go into the statistics of how much more a college graduate makes over a lifetime. It's a significant difference. Are there more important things then money? Of course there are. At least there are until you can't pay the rent. Then money becomes a bit more important. What's that phrase? Money can't buy happiness, but it's more comfortable to be miserable in a BMW than on a 10-speed. Something like that... A college degree is the difference between working in a coffee shop and owning the coffee shop.

And despite what she claims from customers at the restaurant she worked at, I've never heard of anyone who regretted getting their degree, but I know plenty of people who regret not getting one. (Hey, if I'm wrong, let me know!) Besides her education is practically paid for! Where is the "waste of money" if it isn't your money? (And why couldn't she come up with that moral argument when she wanted a car/prom dress/TOMS/new flat iron?) Where is waste if you take advantage of a limited time opportunity?

I hate to admit it, but I know that if she leaves school I will loose a certain amount of respect for her as a person. Don't misunderstand!! I will always love my baby. And yes, I want her to be happy. I just want her to also be educated. At 18, she has no idea what's going to happen in the next 5-10-30 years. And in all that time, she will need a roof over her head, food in her belly. But I will always remember that she had this chance, one that I had to work so much harder for, and she tossed it aside like a rotten tomato.

I honestly don't care what her degree is in. History? Fine. English? Fine. Physical Therapy? Fine. Counseling? Fine. Underwater Basket Weaving? Fine. I just want her to have that college degree. To have something she can use to fall back on later.

In the current economy, there are enough people unemployed (and, to be fair, underemployed). Many of them are fighting for those minimum wage jobs. Competition can be fierce. An education is a way to give yourself an advantage.

Plus, with all the general classes required, a college student learns a lot of things which can open their minds to so many more opportunities. And opportunities open more doors.

The idea of her miserable breaks my heart, it makes me cry. But I'm not giving in on this one. It's more important for her to have that sheepskin, to take advantage of this opportunity she's being given. I know it's harsh, but if she drops out, she's on her own. No more funds from mom and dad. We will support her as long as she remains in school: car insurance, health insurance, laundry money, whatever it takes. We'll even help once she graduates and is actively looking for work in any field. But not if she leaves school. That's a decision I can't support. And the thought of that breaks my heart.

I know that at 18, she is considered a legal adult. She's made decisions in her six months of adult-hood that I disagree with. She still hasn't registered to vote, which just bugs the crap outta me. We won't discuss the septum piercing. *shiver*

I will always love her. Always. More than she can possibly imagine. But I can't support her making a decision that will limit her future. Maybe I'm just a snob. Maybe I'm I worry too much. Maybe I'm just an overprotective mother who wants what is best for her child. Maybe I'm so cheap that I can't imagine throwing away such an opportunity just because. Maybe I'm letting the sadness in her voice get the best of me.

I think the next few weeks will be tough. On all of us. And I wish it weren't. I wish I'd hear the smile again. I wish she would look toward the future instead of acting like she was stuck in a prison.


Saturday, August 20, 2011

Wordpress or Blogger? Obviously, I have this blog at blogger. I also have a (parked) one at Wordpress. Which should I use?