Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Happy Anniversary

Dear Michael,

In 1999, I creepily knew who you were when I was the manager of the 8th grade boys' basketball team. You were one of the 4 "Hot Guys" that me and my fellow manager kept our eyes on. You were quiet, and I assumed that you were just too cool for me, when in reality you were terrified of girls, and waaaay into Final Fantasy Tactics and Starcraft. If only I knew then, what I know now.
We never talked in those days, but I had my eye on you.

In 2001, you resurfaced. After middle school, you disappeared, and since you were so quiet, no one knew where you went. But, on New Years Eve as we moved into 2001, you reappeared in Christina's basement. Turns out you had gone to the local private school, rather than the public one the rest of us attended. You came with Ryan, who kept in touch with you through sports.
As ridiculous as it sounds, I remember when you walked down the stairs.

In early 2003, we started dating. It was extremely unexpected for me. It was our senior year of high school.

I remember in the few days before you left for college, we hadn't talked about whether we would stay together while at different schools. I asked about it while we were driving aimlessly to that huge warehouse that you used to work at, and your response made it seem like staying together, despite the distance, was the most obvious thing in the world.

When I moved into my Iowa dorm, and I was getting to know my roommates, I told all of them that you were the boy I was going to marry.

In the summer of 2004, we found the distance to be too much. I was insane while at Iowa, and I was miserable to deal with. We spent this summer hanging out, and just having fun, knowing that we were both going into our 2nd year of college single. But still friends.

In 2005, we had a phone conversation where you told me about a new girl that you really liked. I asked too many questions, because I was morbidly curious, and when I got off the phone I was so sad. It was the first time I really admitted to myself that I was still in love with you.

During the summer of 2006, I drove out to Iowa to see your art installation. I was so proud, and walking around on my own (after I had solved your mystery with Nate) I was moved to tears.

On Labor Day of 2006, after a particularly difficult day you called me. I still don't know what clicked, but you told me that you wanted to get back together. You told me you loved me. It was that day that we decided that this was it.

The summer of 2007, we moved in together in a cute little apartment in Iowa. Then we bought a little dog. To this day, I still have no idea how we managed to make it through that summer. Again, I was a miserable person. I had a really hard time coping with moving somewhere where the only person I knew was you, having no job, and being so far from my family. Thanks for not smothering me in my sleep. Seriously. I wouldn't have blamed you.

At midnight of Jan 1, 2008, you asked me to marry you. I said yes. Duh.

On May 30, 2009, we said these things to each other:
Since that second first kiss we shared in front of your U of I apartment, I knew that you were the woman I would spend the rest of my life with. I made a promise to myself that day that I was never going to let you go from my life again. And now here we are standing up in front of all of our family and friends, preparing to step into a new life together and a new level of togetherness. Ashley, you are the most gracious, loving and kind woman I have ever met. I am so fortunate to be the man you have chosen to live with and love. You give everything of yourself to me with selflessness and a kind heart. We laugh endlessly and share a beautiful and secret world filled with tenderness, devotion and caring. You lift my spirits before I even let you know they are hurting. You encourage and support me unwaveringly in everything that I do. You are my partner in crime and my closest, dearest companion. My great love. I am so glad we are sharing our lives with one another, because my life would be so painfully incomplete without you next to me, now and when we are older.

I promise to give you the best of me, to give you all that I have to offer in every way I know how.
I promise to share my life with you, and grow loser to you with each passing day we are together.
I promise to be there for you in any condition, in times of gladness and when times are grim.
I promise to tell you, over and over again, that you are loved and to love you unconditionally, and put yourself before me.
I promise to work everyday to become a better man, better husband, and eventually an excellent father.
I promise to love you, to honor you, to care for you, and to be faithful to you from this day forward, and for the rest of our lives.


Michael James,
I can’t believe I am marrying you today. I’ve loved you since I was 17 years old. I loved you when I knew it was in my best interests not to. I loved you when we were 355 miles apart. And through all that time, I knew that this day would come. However, I am still in complete awe of this moment, and I feel like it is too good to be true. I love that you remember the little things, and that you are like a lumbering, incoherent bear in the morning. I love that you worry whether you will be a good father based on the happiness of the dog, and I love that you are entertained by my whining – because you’re the only man, anywhere, that could possibly feel that way…and that’s why we are meant to be together.

That said -
With hope and optimism, I promise to encourage you to accomplish all the things you dream of. In the face of success, or failure, I will be your loudest supporter. I promise to share my achievements, and to celebrate yours.

Fiercely, I promise to stand by you in the face of adversity, and distress, sadness and disappointment. I promise to defend our marriage, our friendship and our bond. I promise be your partner as we build the life we’re looking so forward to

Unconditionally, I promise to trust you and to love you and to respect you. I promise to honor all of our differences because these are what make us who we are.

Awkwardly, I promise to dance, sing nonsense songs, and make terrible jokes, (In public. At totally inappropriate times. Forever.) As long as you do it with me.

Passionately, I promise to spend my life learning about you and delighting in each new discovery. I promise to share myself with you.

Breathlessly, I promise to be your partner, your lover, your friend and your wife. I promise to bind my life with yours.

Michael, I promise to love you always.

Happy Anniversary, my sweet

Monday, May 24, 2010

My LOST analysis (SPOILERS)

DISCLAIMER: Do not read this post, or click on the link, or even skim any further if you haven't watched the LOST finale, or plan on someday watching LOST in the future (and don't want the ending revealed). This post is spoiler-city, and also my thoughts on the end of the series.


This is how I feel about the LOST Finale

YES, there was a beautiful emotional reunion.

I think they were too ambitious and introduced too many things that they couldn't explain/wrap up in time. There are too many story lines that they planted seeds for, and just left to die.

Don't get me wrong, it was a wonderful show, and the finale was great (if not too sentimental)
, but they DEFINITELY bit off more than they could chew:
telepathy, reincarnation, divine guardians, electromagnetism, purgatory, ominous warnings, good, evil, smoke monsters, temples, giant statues, religious symbolism from ALMOST EVERY RELIGION, magical light, sneaky polar bears, Dharma Initiatives, landlocked slave ships - I mean seriously...how could this all cohesively come together?

My Anger:
WTF happened to Walt? And Aaron was supposed to be important, remember how the psychic (I think in season 1) FREAKED out when Claire wanted to get a reading, and he made a huge stink about how CLAIRE HAS TO BE THE ONE TO RAISE him. I assumed that's WHY she was on the Island, and Aaron would have this huge part (maybe become the next Jacob?) But...clearly not.

And HI! Remember when Ben took Lock to see "Jacob" for the first time. There was no one in the house, and Ben staged the conversation with Jacob...Then the house started shaking poltergeist style, and Locke hears "Help me" DO YOU REMEMBER THAT??

Also, anyone else have trouble swallowing the fact that UnLocke was killed so easily? I understand that he became mortal after the stone was unplugged, or whatever, but for HOW MANY YEARS was UnLocke the badass smoke monster? Did he lost his smoke monster powers when the stone was unplugged? And Jack and Kate manage to kill him? I thought that battle scene would be a little more epic.

Why, if this Flash Sideways business was a transition to some sort of afterlife, some sort of Limbo...would Kate still be a fugitive? Why would Sun get shot? And Jin be captured?
I mean Hurley was able to make the Sideways life more wonderful. Same with Jack (married/divorced Juliet, who he has a nice relationship and a bright son with) Sawyer, manged to become a cop.

WTF was with the temple and the statue? With Dogan. Who built it? Where did it come from? Why did Jacob's presence on the island protect them? What was the rejuvenating water that drowned Sayid and then made him a zombie?

Was the weird and hokey LIGHT the electromagnetic radiation that has consistently been a part of the storyline? Seriously, this light nonsense made my skin crawl. And it would have been beneficial to introduce it sometime BEFORE the last three episodes.

It feels like the creators/writers of Lost started off with such great expectations, and high hopes, but quickly ran out of time.

The pace of the show started off well - meaning seasons 1 - 5 - but as we got to 6, it left me feeling like it was a clumsy sprint to the finish line. They introduced too many characters and new plot developments SO LATE that I never got the time to speculate or familiarize myself with them.

As someone mentioned in another article, it would have been nice to get more of a feel for Eloise, or Christian. Both of them were strange soothsayers who would appear randomly and drop some knowledge on the Island Folk before disappearing again into the ether. Even Charles Widmore. He was once the leader of the Island, but how/why did he get there? Did that get explained, and I've just forgotten?

It seems like I'm at the point where I'm so saturated with Lost (I've been rewatching the entire series for months) that my details are getting confused. Characters that carried weight are getting forgotten in favor of others that existed on the periphery.

I could go on and on and on about this, but I'm hoping that this blog post will put it to bed for me. I was satisfied (emotionally), but my curiosity was cheated. I invested way too much time in this show, and the mysteries of the Island to accept the finale quietly.

In short, I feel cheated.

Image here

Wednesday, May 19, 2010


So! Good news!

I WILL complete a goal this month!

Are you ready? GET EXCITED!?!

By Sunday I will have...


(Have I built adequate suspense yet?)


Image from here

...God, I'm pathetic.

Maybe after Sunday (THE FINALE) I'll have the time to commit to something more...worthwhile.

ADDITIONALLY, Rachelle and I have committed to being more positive. About everything. Now there's talk of volunteering. WHO AM I?

Friday, May 14, 2010

Dear Universe, STOP IT.

I've been totes missing the last week or so, but at my house, we're dealing with multiple sagas at the moment.

Saga 1: A piece of siding on our house has fallen off. We saw the siding in the lawn in early March, but the color looked like our neighbors house, so we ignored it, and figured that it was theirs. In early April we started chatting with said neighbors, and they asked us if we'd seen that that piece of siding that had fallen off our house?

Cut to Mike and Ashley staring, shocked, at the GAPING siding hole on our house.

The insurance company recommended someone to fix it and we promptly called them to get a repair estimate. Well, dude comes out and we don't hear from him for days. Calls go unreturned, and still nothing. FINALLY, he gives us a verbal quote with the promise that he'll email Mike an official estimate.

DAYS go by, Mike calls almost every day, and we hear nothing.
By now...a month has passed. With heavy winds, and pouring rain.
Annnnnnd, we're done.
We figure that if this guy can't return a call, or email an estimate, than he can go without our business. So yesterday, we told him we are no longer interested in his services.

Now? We're back at square one. This time using a repair company that's recommended by friends and family.

Saga 2: On Tuesday, I was driving home, when I realized we needed a few things from the grocery store. So, I diverged from my normal route. Traffic was rush hour-y, but not bad. I come up to a red light, everyone was moving slowly, so it wasn't an abrupt stop.

Since driving on the highway everyday, I've gotten into the habit of checking my rear view every time I stop so I can see imminent death coming towards me in the event of an accident. As I look in my rear view mirror and see a Ford Escape barreling towards my car, and the driver is ABSOLUTELY NOT looking at the road, or my car, or the red light. I have a very hostile and sneaking suspicion that she was texting. I hate her.

As the bringer of pain continues to drive FULL SPEED towards me, I realized "Oh sweet mother of shit, she's going to hit me."
Annnnnd, then she did. Hard. My glasses flew off, every possession I owned flew to the front of the car, I skinned my knee hitting the steering column, and my neck got jacked (don't worry - everything is fine, just typical accident stuff. I'm completely recovered today)

By the time I pulled off and walked to her car, she had already called 911. So! On top of getting crashed into, we turned one of he most traveled roads in my town into a fucking GONG SHOW (thanks E for that phrase!). There were 2 fire trucks, 1 ambulance and at least 4 police officers, and they basically shut it down. During rush hour.

My car was pretty jacked, but drivable. Barely. The bumper was demolished, my taillights were basically hanging on for dear life, I think my undercarriage was out of whack, my gas tank WASN'T where it should be, the floor of my trunk was all raised, and my trunk was crushed.

The next day, I drove my car out to get looked at by her insurance company. They assumed liability (I mean, was there a doubt!?) and told me they would get me the estimate ASAP.

Come Thursday, I receive a phone call from her insurance notifying me that they have determined that my car is a total loss, and they offered me a settlement that is $364.56 less than what I owe on the car.

At first I was pacified because I assumed the settlement would be less than that, but the more I thought about it, and all the things I now had to deal with, the less satisfied I am.

Not only do I have to pay for the remainder of my loan (which, isn't a HUGE deal, I can swing $364.56 - but do I want to?? ) but I now have to come up with a down payment for a car I had no intention of buying (which is a bigger deal).

I have no idea if I have any room to negotiate the settlement, or even how to go about doing this. I just want to explore my options, and see what kind of recourse is available. The only things I've done so far is contact my insurance company for advice, and I started drafting an email to my claim handler expressing my concerns over the settlement....but I haven't sent it.

Oddly enough, we have a family friend who is a lawyer, and his firm deals (at least a little bit) with auto accidents. When he saw my bitching on Facebook, he sent me a message that said "Don't you know a great laywer?? Call me tomorrow!"

I shot him an email with all the info in it, and I should hear from him Monday. I don't know what all of this means. I don't really know what to do, and what my next step is.

I definitely need a new car...I'm looking at the Toyota Yaris because I've heard AMAZING things about Toyota cars, regardless of their current recall/legal drama. But seriously - this is NOT how I wanted to spend my weekend.

I only have the rental paid for until Tuesday. Tonight we're going to look at cars, tomorrow I have a birthday bonanza all day, Sunday is my sister's graduation. I don't know what we're going to do.

I was all jazzed this morning on my way to work to fight the settlement, and get a spine and stand up for myself - but I don't know where to start, which leaves me feeling like a baby.
Now, the plan is to wait until Monday and hear from our lawyer friend, while continuing to research and look for cars.

Saga 3: I don't think our water softener is working anymore. My water tastes mildly salty, and not at ALL delicious. This irritates me in a VARIETY of ways.

Image from here

Updates on May-ke My Life Better initiative: Complete and utter failure. Haven't gone running, haven't exercised at ALL. There's no money to budget. I don't have the spunk to blog.
I was really hoping I could get it together this month, because I can't turn 'June' into any kind of clever initiative title.

Maybe next time, Ashley. Maybe next time.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Time and again.

I want time.

I want time to try to bake a cake from scratch and re-read Lolita. I want 10 minutes to sit in my backyard and appreciate the sun, and the work that I've put into my yard

I want to be able to have my english muffin and coffee at my kitchen table, and not while I'm driving to work. I want to cook dinner, and ONLY cook dinner. Not cook dinner, while unloading the dishwasher and folding the laundry and wiping down countertops. I want to do one thing at a time.

I want to shave my legs in the morning without making myself bleed, or missing a spot. I want to have clothes that I've been able to iron. I want to be able to make the bed in the morning, so when I come back at night it seems more comfortable than when I left it.

I want to go running, and listen to my iPod and not be completely preoccupied with the millions of things I still have to take care of. I want to run at a leisurely pace, and not push myself too hard, so I finish sooner, because I have so little time to be running.

I want to be able to stay up later than 10:30pm. But I can't. Because otherwise I'll be tired on my drive in to work at 6am, and I am terrified of falling asleep on the highway. I want more hours to be awake and aware.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Derby Party

May 1st started my May-ke My Life Better initiative, and so far so good.

Among the things that I hope to improve:
  • My physical fitness
  • My time management
  • My interpersonal relationships
  • The running of my household
  • Our spending habits
  • Quality of blog posts
This is a large task, but I think I just needed that RESET to get things in order without getting overwhelmed by them.

Last Saturday we had a Kentucky Derby party. And until that silly party I wasn't really a person. I was a stressed out, procrastinating shell.
However, the party came together beautifully, and everyone looked wonderful.
Everyone, except my bro-in-law, Nick, who was graciously taking the picture.

I probably would have been more nervous and stressed about this shindig if my wonderful friends and family hadn't been so excited about dressing up. I was genuinely surprised.

My mom paid for a cleaning lady to come to my house a day before the party, and I feel like this plays a huge role in the RESET that has happened. My home is SPOTLESS (well, it WAS...) They got rid of cobwebs I never knew were there. They put away my dishes. They are amazing.

Me, sisters, Mom

Additionally, my ass was running SO behind the day of the party, my mom and sisters covered for me while I finished making food and putting on my makeup. They're pretty cool people.

Watching the Derby

Unrelated. I am 5'8 - so is Angelina Jolie. Mike is 5'11 - so is Brad Pitt. We're like the normal people versions of them. Duh.


Related Posts with Thumbnails