2019-12-28 MFA Res Day .998 – Serious Shrug

(They can’t all be winners.)

I did a little catching up with some of my peeps last night but was hampered somewhat by a slight headache and a lack of desire. Desire for what I’m not sure. A few folks were talking about being nervous and or excited but it’s their second term. This is my 4th and some of the nerves have faded but it’s been traded for a bit of a shrug.

It was cold when I went to my room and I resisted going to the car to get my supply of Tylenol for my headache. I had a very brief phone conversation with Jim and then crashed out with a pile of like 8 pillows on my bed.

My sleep was poor and brief and I woke with a worse headache. The first thing I did was check the temp outside. 37. I could not put off going to my car. It’s dark and rainy and cold but the fresh air felt good on my skin and in my lungs. And now I’ve had Tylenol and my daily dose of circumin, biotin, and Claritin. Oh.. and the cold water that was in my car.

It’s 6am and there’s a long day ahead for this SugarCookie. Breakfast, orientation, workshop, 2 or three lectures, lunch, a round of mentor introductions, a graduating student reading (yay Michelle!! 💃), dinner, faculty readings. I’m exhausted typing that list and considering I’ve only had 5 hours of sleep it’s going to be a long day.

By this time I’ve realized the short list of things I’ve forgotten to bring. There’s always something. Some things I can get at the Walgreens but at least 1 can only be found at my home.. my migraine meds. Having a headache reminded me of that and thankfully this headache is not a migraine. I just have to hope that doesn’t happen or be prepared to make some sacrifices over time if one develops.

This has got to be the most boring blog post ever. I’ve only been on the treadmill for 20 minutes and I’m so bored with myself. I kind of want to go back outside. I kind of just want to walk in the rain. I kind of want to get in my car and drive home and climb back into my own bed. I’m hoping this strange subdued mood leaves my body and mind soon.

That’s it for today I think. 30 minutes and I’m done. Perhaps I’ll have more interesting details to report after my first full day here.

Peace,

~Miss SugarCookie

PS List of Forgotten items:

1.imatrex.

2.neutrogina facial cleansing wipes.

3.a book to read (I always bring books and never read them due to lack of time and now I’m wishing I had my current read and/or a few of my unread poetry books).

Not bad.

2019-12-27 MFA Res Day 0.5 – Midnight in December

6PM on December 27th in Nowheresville Nebraska and it might as well be midnight. Last time I was here I had to request a new room after 3 days because of a wasp problem and this time? It might be a neighbor problem. Time will tell. I’m not next to my friends anyway so they can put me wherever. Put me back home or wherever. Or whenever.

I looked at the first two or three days of the schedule and tried to consume it. Tried to put some ginger snaps in my mouth before and after to make it taste better but it doesn’t. My hearts not in it and all of a sudden this feels like a big mistake. I’m going to write a thesis? A What?! Are you looking at me when you say those words. I don’t even the hell know what a thesis is. I don’t know if I can learn the definition in time. Too many other things to do, you know, and never enough time.

It’s so dark and I’m already missing home. The cats and the kids and Jim. Not the dishes or the laundry though. Nine days not doing laundry is truly the definition of a saving grace.

There’s dinner tonight and as dark as it is now it will feel like a late night snack. All 62 of us sneaking down to the pantry to pull a plate of some baked chicken and sauce de jour. Please, oh please, let it be marinara tonight. With some motz cheese and maybe a noodle or two to twist onto my fork. Who doesn’t love a midnight snack?

The schedule for tomorrow has six events I want to go to and the day after that is 7 and already I’m exhausted because I haven’t slept for three days. I’m exhausted from not sleeping for the next 3 or 5 or 8 days and I don’t believe I have enough Xanax to get me through.

Oh my but how it is cold at midnight in Nebraska. I suspect the temp in this room is a fickle as my grandmother said it was her prerogative to be. Just scooch a degree up and watch her say “you want it hot?! Fine.. I’ll show you hot”. Every room a different shade of grandmother in this chateau. “Lodge” is such a rustic word. Such a hard square word that sort of chokes you when you try to say or unsay it.

I’m afraid it’s too late to unsay this little adventure. And this post. And what’s about to happen now. Soon it will be 1AM and for the love of all the trees in the world, please let me be sleeping by then.

XOXO,

~Miss SugarCookie

2019-12-27 MFA Res Day 0

Why day 0? Cuz I’m a numbers nerd and all good counters start at 0.

Today is my last minute mad scramble to get my act together and haul myself and half my world to Nebraska City for the start of my 4th official Residency for my MFA.💃💃💃 Festivities kick off this afternoon and I’m hoping to be there by 3pm but we’ll see. My checklist needs a lot of work.

I’d love to get to Jazzercise this morning but that’s not looking likely at this point. If I was packed perhaps. If I’d have done laundry yesterday perhaps. If the kids weren’t here perhaps but even my 4:45am wake-up wasn’t enough to Make a good dent. Why oh why is it so tough to commit to 10 days of clothing? And why do I decide to sit in my closet painting my toenails instead? And can somebody please tell me why I feel the need to pack a supply of food and snacks when 1. All the meals are provided and 2. There’s a market 5 minutes from the Lied Lodge? My stupid brain.

And if history repeats itself (which it ALWAYS does) I’ll be making a trip to Walmart while I’m there anyway. /shrug

I’m super excited to see some of the people I’ve gotten to know better during the course of this program and am hoping that I can have a good balance of activities so I can keep my sanity. Since it’s winter there will be no escaping for walking outside.

One of my goals this time around is to do all my notes same day so that submitting the assignments can be done and posted before I leave. I also need to try and keep my focus on the tasks at hand and not let my anxiety get the best of me. Spending 10 days in this environment has historically caused this introverted SugarCookie to go a little bit off the rails. And of course I’m expecting Bob to be there so I’ll have to share the one treadmill in the gym there. 😜

Anyway, that’s probably it for today. Lots to do and the clock is ticking. ⏰

Next Stop.. Nebraska City,

~Miss SugarCookie

2019-10-12 Great Day’s and Girls Only Getaways

I ended my post a few days ago with “Tomorrow’s Gonna Be Great.” And indeed it was and how did I know that? How?

On Wednesday evening when I was walking the treadmill and thinking and writing I was sort of in a sour mood as I had been running around all day and did not accomplish much. The things I did get done were not very satisfying. I guess I was thinking (or hoping) that the day to follow was going to be better. Perhaps more self-fulfilling prophesy than premonition. Whatever it was.. the next day (Thursday) was really great.

Of course because it was great, I didn’t have time to write about it and the day that followed that (yesterday) was pretty stellar too and super busy. No time for treadmill or writing or even just sitting and thinking about stuff. Is that why the past two days were so great, because I was busy and had no time to spare? I would say maybe a little bit, but for the most part no.

Yesterday is still so fresh in my mind and far overshadows the day before that. It all started a few weeks ago when my Z sent me a text message about a concert she wanted to go to on October 11th. Skillet is one of her favorite bands (in her top 5) and she begged me to go but the closest show was in Kansas City. KC is about a 2.5 hour drive (2 to the outskirts where the Airport is) and so it is a pretty quick little road trip for us. Not that the road trip part of it mattered, because we both love road trips so even if it was 7 or 8 hours we probably would have gone. I actually briefly considered the Oct 10th show in Chicago. That would mean she would have to miss school though which would be bad parenting (not that I haven’t bent those rules before in certain circumstances).

The reality is, my time with her at home is really getting short now and a year from now she will be off at college. I want to take advantage of any opportunity I can to spend QT with her. The fact that she is 17 and still thinks of me first when doing this sort of stuff is pretty great and I knew it would be a good trip for just the two of us. I actually had other plans I had to cancel (the Phil Collins concert in Omaha), which I was really looking forward to (because I’m an old nerd), but it was totally worth it.

As it turns out, with Parent Teacher conferences this week the kids had a 4 day weekend so there was no school Friday. This meant we could leave at whatever time we wanted and take our time and make a whole day of it. I had several things to take care of in the AM before leaving (work and also the last harvest of the season before the temps drop to freezing) and after that we got on the road.

I knew I would not want to attempt to drive back to Omaha after the concert so we booked a room at the Holiday Inn Express. We arrived just in time for check-in. Shortly after that, we made a quick run to target for a few things (because every good road trip needs a Target run) and then it was back to the room to get all dolled up for dinner and the show.

The concert was in the heart of downtown KC in the power and light district at the Arvest Bank Theatre (super cool vintage venue). Doors opened at 6 and the show started at 7. There were three bands total and though I dig concerts, the music at this one was not really my thing. The first two bands were extremely loud. I never was a big heavy metal fan and they were both rock approaching metal. Even Z covered her ears for a lot of those first two acts.

The band we came for, Skillet, was a little closer to something I might typically listen to and therefore more enjoyable. She clearly enjoyed it, beaming from ear to ear when each new song she recognized started. It was a medium sized venue, so there were really no bad seats, but we were in the very top section, with all the other people who don’t stand during the show. We were at the end of a row so she had a perfect view of the stage. It was so great to see her so happy.

The whole thing lasted about 4 hours, which included us getting half way to the car before realizing the sweatshirt we bought was the wrong size and had to walk back to exchange it. I’m not sure what time we arrived back at the hotel but I was wiped out and ready for bed. I fell asleep as she was messaging with a few of her Cali friends and someone who was in a time zone where it was only like 2:30 PM – good grief where in the world must that person be?

The room was too cold and the pillows were just all wrong for me and so I did not sleep well at all. I was actually awake at 5:30AM and contemplating sneaking away to the hotel exercise room to walk and write. I didn’t though. I just turned the heat up and laid there for a while. Eventually I pulled out my laptop (yes, the new shiny) and .. waa-la.. here we are.

If it were up to me, we would be going down to take advantage of that “free” HIE breakfast right about now, but she’s still fast asleep.

I suppose I could climb back in bed and see if I can remember why Thursday was so great or what was so different about Thursday compared to Wednesday. Some days I think it’s just a mood or a vibe. Today will probably be good because we get to drive back to Omaha and then I get to spend the rest of Saturday with my fiancé without any obligations. Keep those great days coming!

Cheers to the Weekend!

~Miss SugarCookie

2019-09-29 Austin Day 2 and 3 and Done

It’s really been more than a day, but a full itinerary doesn’t leave a lot of time for reflection or writing.

Saturday we had a girls spa day followed by an evening out with a group of 5 of us. Steph couldn’t make it up from Galveston because she was not feeling well so that was kind of a bummer. We had a good day though.

We started the day with brunch out. The spa was in the same shopping plaza so that was a nice brief walk under an overcast sky. In the afternoon their was rain and thunder and it would have been a good time for a nap but I couldn’t quite calm my brain enough for that and settled on doing my mid-term summaries for school instead.

Then as evening approached we all got dressed up (including pink hair this time) and then headed back out for dinner and drinks at the galleria. I had a tipsy bit too much and just rolled with the crew to a cocktail/boutique bar. That’s a thing. It’s a combo place with different setups for tables and chairs and decor and art and it’s all for sale. Not like you buy your chair and take it home with you, but it’s all stuff they sell that you can order. Wild right?!

I don’t need any thing, so it was just about the cocktails and conversation. That was good. Then we coasted home. The boys were our designated drivers and when we arrived home Rebecca poured us another and we sat out on the back patio. I was sure I was going to wake just sick, but I didn’t. Amazing.

I did, however, not get very much sleep (about 5.5 hours according to Fitbit) and am feeling just exhausted now. Today has been the most chill day yet, but something about knowing I am leaving causes a situation where I just can’t relax.

I’m on the first plane now, waiting to take off and feel like I could just fall asleep. I may just close my eyes and see what happens.

***

One flight down and one to go and I’m just wiped out. The good news is that I’m being picked up at techie airport and don’t have to walk to find my car and drive. I’m also in pretty good shape for my day tomorrow so I should get great sleep tonight. It was a quick trip but I’m glad to be heading for my own bed… and seeing Jim and the kids.

I don’t see a lot of travel in my near future and after discussions with my peeps I apparently have more wedding planning to do soon to stay on top of things. I don’t even want to think about that right now though. Right now.. I’m all about just getting my ass on this last plane and getting home.

That pretty much sums things up. ✅✅✅

Until next time,

~Miss SugarCookie

2019-09-28 Austin Day 1 – Chillin in 90 Degree Heat

Yesterday was a very chill day with fam and a mostly normal Friday routine. I’m on holiday but they still have work and kids that go to school and activities to manage.

In the morning I had a fair amount of time to walk and think and then when Rebecca hit her stopping point with work we took to the neighborhood streets to do more walking and catching up.

She took the afternoon off and we met up with our other friend at her house on Lake Travis. Technically, she explained, their house is on a wide channel of the river that forms the lake, but the channel is so wide, it doesn’t resemble a river at all. It’s an incredible view from their back patio and we sat and had a drink and just talked.

Then the three of us went to this place called “The Reserve” which is also on the “lake”, which is kind of like a resort/local club/pool with restaurants and a bar and pools for kids and adults and a lazy river. We walked the lazy river for a couple of hours, with more drinks when the bar opened up. With school back in session the place was practically deserted. Apparently this is the last weekend it will be open which seems incredible to me. It’s still so, so hot.. if I had a membership I would keep going there well into the fall. But I guess these temps are atypical this time of year even for Texas.

I got pretty tipsy by the time we were wrapping up the session at the pool and was just coasting with whatever was planned next. That turned out to be dinner back at the house with the kids and more chill conversation on the back patio after the sun went down.

There were no clouds and the sky was so clear. Both Saturn and Jupiter were in view but no Orion’s Belt or dipper I could see There was very little moon so there were more starts visible and being this south of town it’s approaching the darkness possible as you drive west in Nebraska. There’s the faint glow of a band across the sky and I know, it’s the light from clusters of stars We can’t see. You have to be so many miles away from civilization with no moon and clear skies, like in the Badlands, to see those stars.

To see a sky that is more stars than sky. The light of some of those stars are only echoes of light that used to exist. In the time it takes to travel to our eyes, the star may have met it’s last day. It’s such a wild thing to think about. And the perspective of that can shift your thinking. I know it changes mine.

I went to bed fairly early again, exhausted from the long day of relaxation and conversation. My head was actually pounding and I was afraid the pain of it would spill over into my sleep and the next day. Today, I’m going to try for a little less drinking and a little more of everything else. 🙂

XOXO, ❤️

~Miss SugarCookie

2019-09-27 Austin Day 0 – Arriving Home

This morning I woke up in one of my favorite places. My bedroom in the corner of the house of my Texas bestie. It really does feel great to be home. It’s not my home of course but you know what they say, about home and the heart. Such truth.

My friends’ home has been my home for 10+ years. They were preparing to get married as my marriage was falling apart in 2009. They have offered me sanctuary at every turn. The divorce, the rebuilding of my life as a single mom, the stops and starts in the dating world, the high of meeting Matt, and the heartbreak as that too fell apart. Then round two of dating again.. and what a horrible thing dating has become. Why does it feel like there’s nothing redeeming about it?! Except, of course, that impossible needle in a haystack of finding a special someone. And now, my friends are gathering to celebrate that! Life is good.

Last night Rebecca picked me up from the airport and we immediately went to dinner, just the two of us, to start getting caught up. I know she’s my people because we both came with this thought in our heads we need a list so we don’t miss talking about anything. Yup.

So that was great, and we we went to one of our places, District Kitchen, where I had my Bison burger and whatever new thing is on the cocktail menu. We got through a few topics there and then continued back at the house with a desert cocktail and winding down on the back patio. In bed by like 10pm, cuz that’s where we are at. This might be my weekend away to stay up late, etc. but she’s got routine and little ones and life has requirements.

This morning I’m doing the elliptical thing and gathering some thoughts. One thing I’m grateful for here is just a break in my own crazy routine and getting a few things done which are important but never bubble to top priority.

After this session, she has a whole day planned for us and it sounds amazing. Temps here are record highs (100s) and it reminds me when I was in Colorado in June and it was freezing and snowing. The routine of the Earth, too, is off it’s rails.

She warned me ahead of time “don’t bring jeans or you might die”. Ha! So it’s sun dresses and shorts and tank tops. I’m all for extending summer a little more. I’m never really ready for fall.

That it for this session. Time to go find the sun.

Cheers to Day 1,

~Miss SugarCookie