Sunday, August 14, 2011

Up with the Birds

Well, I guess 7:45 a.m. is not really bird-time, but it's really early for summer (for us), and when that alarm went off this morning, our groans could likely be heard by the birds three houses down. 

I bet these awesome birds sleep till 7:45 in the morning. 

Today is officially Brad's last day of summer 2011 - big frown here: :( - which means tomorrow his alarm will go off at 6 a.m. and he'll start making that way-too-long trek to and from work once again. Then I'm back to the grind on Thursday, though I will, thankfully, have no such crazy alarm. 

This summer has flown by. Floooooooooown. (I guess I've got a bird thing going on in this post . . . . ) 

We've had so much fun, and I hate that it's winding down faster than fast, but in contrast to the typical end of summer, I'm not dreading the start of the semester. Don't get me wrong: I don't want summer to end, and I'm not particularly looking forward to teaching composition yet again (esp. b/c the head of my dept. once again offered me a creative writing class - but it was MWF and there's no way I can drive in 5 days a week and keep my sanity), but I have a kind of acceptance of the fact that it's back to business.

I think it's largely a result of the fact that this is the last semester in which I have to take classes; in the spring I'll finish up my credits with a directed reading in an area of my choosing and start making my lists for comps. I can't tell you how good that feels; I'm so tired of coursework, I can hardly explain it. I have, after all, been in school for the last twenty-four years of my life.

For Brad's part, although he's desperately lamenting summer's close, he's grateful to have a job in this economy, and equally grateful to have a job that he likes, that he's good at, one with co-workers who like him and whom he likes back. 

L&O, seasons 4 and 5: back when the best-ever
show had its best-ever cast 
And so it's back to the computer (and the attendent neck ache), but not without fond memories of all the summer fun. And, indeed, Brad and I had a ton of fun this summer. We watched a lot of great tv (old Law and Order seasons, Luther, True Blood); relaxed on the patio with our new fire pit; hung out with my mom a lot; spent an obscene amount of time in Lowe's and an even more obscene amount of time in JoAnn Fabrics; wrote and read at Starbucks; went to the movies; frequented Goodwill and the Habitat for Humanity ReStore (I'm *in love* with that place and Brad really likes it, too); sword fought in the front yard; got hooked on Words with Friends (thanks a lot, Shannon); took neighborhood walks; chased each other with sparklers (which I always somehow call "sprinklers") on the Fourth of July; and just generally had a good time. 

I spent time with Amanda, Shannon slept over a couple of times, I revised a paper. And I never once had to put on a bathing suit. (Which, to my mind, is a major score because I hate bathing suits. Nevertheless, I do want to go to the beach in the near future.) Pair that with the fact that I'm running 2 miles in under 18 minutes despite runner's knee (if not for that, I'd be running more!) and that I haven't bought a piece of clothing in exactly three months, and I'm feeling pretty good. 

Plus, Brad and I (and often my mom) have done a ton of work on the house. Ton, ton, ton. I feel like we've been eating, sleeping, and dreaming DIY home improvement for the past three months. I've got a bunch of fun projects to show off! The difference in my house b/t now and the beginning of summer is hard for me to believe - especially on the small, small budget we've got. 

All this DIY is largely responsible for me going AWOL from blog-land. Three phone conversations should serve as exculpatory evidence: 

A month ago: 
Me: "Well, we re-painted the dining room walls and I dyed the drapes and sanded and spray painted the faucet and fixed the paint on the light fixture this week." 
Amanda: "You've done more on your house in a week than we've done here in 4 years." 

About a week ago: 
Me: "All right, I've gotta go - I have to get to painting." 
Amanda: "What are you people doing now?!?!" 

A few days later: 
Shannon: "Hi. What's going on." 
Me: "I have to call you back; I'm sanding a vanity door." 
Shannon (probably shaking her head): "That sounds like the kind of thing you would do." 

See? It's not like I've been twiddling my thumbs over here. 

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