Snowpocalypse 2011: Coming to a Superbowl near you.

It’s here! (well, almost)

Apocalypse Snow Storm
(source)

The weather map at current posting time shows the beginning nibbles of a HONGRY snow! It’s coming to storm your town and make history!

Like our Snowpocalypse last year, remember that?

Yes, it really happened. We made history last year February 2010 - 12 1/2 inches in twenty-four hours in North Central Texas (Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex).

I think there will be records that eat that one for breakfast, right Chicago?

Anyway, I have properly stocked up on Chocolate Cherrios, Little Debbie Oatmeal Pies, and those mini chocolate donuts (don’t judge).

I eagerly watch the temperature thermometer like a TJ Maxx opening day sale. Drop, drop, drop.

It’s not just for a snow day…..really! I want it to freeze BEFORE I go to work. I do not want my “fiction” story to be based on actual events.

It’s all highway bridges through downtown Fort Worth, and no…….the sand truck won’t help. See they misjudge here, they are not sand/salt road experts. They prematurely sand the streets (wet). It freezes. SOLID. It’s really unhelpful. They may realize their mistake and sand again, but with three trucks? It could take a while. In the meantime, the cars will mount up on the incline of the bridges, unable to reach the top, and begin sliding BACKWARDS (while spinning out) right into where your car is sitting with cars behind you. See what I am saying? It’s ice bumper cars (I’m talking to you Wisconsin-Pittsburgh Superbowl visitors).

Yes, a master can drive on slick streets, on sanded streets even, but not here. Mkay?

Stay inside. Eat your oatmeal pies. Grab an icicle lollipop, and make some snow cream. It’s Party Snowpocalypse 2011.

And if it gets too much, too cold, too brittle, too dark, too desperate and you run out of oatmeal pies? Just think happy beach thoughts. The power of positive thinking, yes?

A beach day-dream in winter.
Bridget- Galveston Beach – November 2010

ConGRADS to the Dad Grad 2010

As Pomp And Circumstance began to play. The girls and I scour the bobbing hats and streaming tassels looking for the one we want to see. Dad. The one we have been waiting to watch walk down the aisle. The one Molly asked if his graduation was starting every three minutes for the last half hour (I’m not kidding).

There!

There he is, the other aisle past our section, if you squint, you can see the happy grad giving us a wave. He saw us!

Catching a glimpse of our grad

I think the girls felt assured that you were in fact there after they saw you. How you saw us in that crowd from across the room – I have no idea.

I have not graduated from college, nor been to college. I don’t know the sacrifice involved. I don’t know the deadlines, the reports, or the group projects. I’ve never taken a college exam, nor studied for a final. I haven’t experienced it. I just don’t know. But…..

I do know for over a year, I watched a single dad working full-time and attending class from 6p-10pm two nights a week in an accelerated masters program. He gave up nights of movie dates, dinners, watching his favorite TV shows, and sleep to study. He spent evenings on conference calls with classmates to complete group projects. He took weekends to burrow in his office and study for the final exam after a fast paced six-week class. He made almost straight A’s.

I couldn’t have done it. Not with the pressure of life. Not with the craziness of kids, an ex, and visitation schedules that don’t take into consideration study time, due dates, and exams. But he did. He made it look easy. And although I can’t fully understand the experience, I can be in awe of his dedication and determination.

Master of Science in Information Systems from the College of Business at UTA…..I don’t even have words to express the magnitude of your success. An achievement most people only think about attaining (but never do).

Your daughters and I, after catching your smiling wave, watched with pride as the rest of the grads filed in one by one and the speeches began. Glancing at the sea of hats and tassels, feeling the resolving strength it took to wear those gowns, knowing each person had a story – a sacrifice – to get there. I got a little teary. Bridget rubbed and patted my arm snuggled next to me. I felt so lucky to be there witnessing that moment with your children, your brother, your step-dad, and your miraculous mother – all watching – all proud.

We listened to the encouragement from speakers alternating girls between laps and chairs. Every few minutes I would assure them Daddy was right there (pointing to all the grads in the direction you sat) and you would be crossing that big stage real soon.

I watched them closely for any sign of returning illness they had that morning (the throwing up kind). If they had still been sick, they would not have been able to attend. You would have been crushed. I would have shrugged it off as they are too little anyway, but my heart would have hurt for you. So praise God, they were well for your special event. Praise God, they spotted you headed for the stage and despite clapping for EVERY name called Jason. They did finally get the “right” Jason. They were so happy to see you on stage. We cheered our hearts out.

UTA Texas Hall graduation ceremony '10

I watched you on that stage through a 200mm lens lit up with the triumph and victory of a masters degree.

You did it. You, and no one else.

Congratulations Jason; my super smart hero who uses bigger words than this Oklahoma (schooled) non-edumacated girl knows (wink).

I truly thought you were crazy to take this on with two young children. I think I said, “Are you mad?

Now I know, you are not crazy. You are not mad as a hatter. Just super intelligent, driven, and proficient at what you do. Driven by a want to go above and beyond, not just for yourself, but for your children’s future.

I love you dad grad.

The master (heh!).

I cherish my life with you. I cherish your desire to always be the best.

You are.

I couldn’t be more proud.

ConGRADS!

One last summer swim? Thanks Hermine!

Does it seem like the storms of late pack more of a punch?

It certainly did yesterday morning when the power went out and the rain poured from the sky. Forming lakes and rivers throughout the yard.

I’ve seen a lot of rain in my time, yes even several hurricanes, but this was something else. It was fast. It was furious. It was small and mighty.

When the rains and tornados moved out. The floods remained.

Bottom of our street.

Across the street from the bottom of our street. I’ve never seen water there before. Now, there is brown water river rafting.

The next street over from our house.

I felt very confident of our location. On a hill. Lucky us, until….

Sydney tells us there is water in her room. On the floor. Basically, under all her items we just moved and have not unpacked. Including piles of clothes on the floor. Aye yi yi.

It was a lot worse than I expected. Half the room was soaked. The water line on items went up as high as two inches.

The fast moving water down the hill rose enough above the foundation to take a little side splash into our house. Whoa!

Drying the carpet and hoping it dries well. Most homeowners insurance doesn’t cover flooding. And not sure if you are aware of our wedding expense coming up? Yeah, that one; 10-10-10. So dollars are few and far between for new carpet, but since my daughter and I are severly allergic to mold, we may have no choice.

It could have been worse. At least it was only half a room and not the whole house. At least her new furniture hadn’t been delivered yet, and most everything was in plastic tubs. A saving grace for sure.

Good-bye Hermine! Texas will not miss you.

This post made by iPhone WordPress app. Please forgive any typos.

P!NK all the above

I got a lot of comments, on Facebook,  about how lucky I was to win concert tickets to P!NK last night at the American Airlines Center in Dallas.

Luck? Blessings? Fate? I always like pondering those. Could it be all the above?

First, maybe it was luck? My name was drawn out of a hat of three names. Maybe it was fate? Since I have, a 15 yr old, daughter I could take. Maybe, I was blessed? Spending time with my best friend from Junior High who lives a mile down the road.  I don’t get to see her near as often as I would like. *different circles, busy, busy lives*

Thing is, the way it worked out so perfectly? It could only be, a little of,  all the above.

I won the tickets out of drawing but,  when the American Airlines rep came by to drop them off, she surprisingly,  had two other sets of tickets. The other two names in the hat also got tickets. Everyone wins! *gotta love that*

I had planned on attending with my daughter. We enjoy P!NK. She is not the norm. She speaks her mind,  and there is something to respect about that,  whether you agree with her or not. I knew, back in 1995, when she was competing with Christina, Brittany and Jessica, that SHE was going to be the one still standing long, long after their careers slowed down. I was partly right since Brittany is still extremely famous -albeit notoriously- compared to P!NK; the rebel. *would have never expected THAT back in the day when Brittany was still pure?*

Turns out, the next day, one of  the other co-workers that got the tickets? She has the flu and can’t go. They ask ME if I’d like TWO more tickets to P!NK! Her two tickets were rightnext to my two seats. Uhhh, YES!

My best friend from Junior High,  and her 19yr old daughter agree to join us. I couldn’t be happier about that,  especially, since I was asking them the day of the concert. Off we go to P!NK! We decide to take the train, from just south of the DFW airport,  to Dallas. It’s called the TRE.

I live in Arlington, Texas. Home of the Cowboys new stadium, home of the Texas Rangers baseball team and ballpark, Six Flags, Hurricane Harbor, UTA of Arlington hosting 25,000 students, and MOST importantly the LARGEST city in the United States with NO public transportation. WHAT!?! Yep, that’s right. NONE. I digress.

We trek about 15mins away to a square of land officials deem Fort Worth (actually Fort Worth is 30miles to the west). Don’t ask. I have no idea but it is so. That square mile (*cough*American Airlines headquarters*cough*) is Fort Worth and Fort Worth has public transportation. A BIG two story train called the TRE. Wee!

I have never been on the TRE before. I get queasy on small trains, but I was willing to try it. Avoid driving in Dallas, fighting traffic, and paying to park? Who gets train sick?  Not me! I’ll admit, the first time I do something is usually a fumble. Let’s call it my charm. I confidently do what I think is right and hope for the best.  If it doesn’t turn out right? Well then, I just go with the flow. I don’t stress. It will work it’s way out and HEY I’ll know better next time. *aren’t I fun?*

Purchasing the wrong tickets was one of my falter moments right off the bat. *why dawdle* I got Zone 1, should have been ALL Zone. Yeah, my friends got Zone 1 too. My bad. My second falter was not knowing which side of the track we should wait for the train on (pssst the EASTbound side). Did I mention I am directionally dysfunctional?? Hey,  it would have helped if they had signs, and maps, or something. Thank goodness they didn’t check tickets.

So, the plan was, follow the girls with PINK hair! It worked! We made it in 15mins via train (Sydney said it looked  like the Harry Potter train) no hassle of PARKING. Two minute walk to the arena. Phhhs! We made it look easy. *I am absolutely doing that again*

The Ting Tings played first. Great beats. I realized on the first song that I had that song on my iPhone,  Great DJ, awesome song to run or bike to. The group consisted of two people. Guy playing the drums and the girl singing and playing guitar. That was quite catchy. Punky, cool and fun, perfect openers for P!NK.

P!NK came out somewhere around my cell battery being at 20% left 9ish.  The stage set was fantastic! They had six screens above the stage in all different sizes. The screens constantly played P!NK video, or the stage show happenings live , lights, scenery,  or other pictures; all framed digitally. It was pretty slick. The stage had stairs,  and two slides, lots of dancers, plus a lounge bed type thing. There was a runway out to the middle of the arena. P!NK came out of a trap door, at the end of the runway being raised up, by rope over the whole stage with feathers trailing down from her skirt. Pretty dramatic!

The latest P!NK album, I got last year when it came out. I liked every song. Jason and I had broken up.  I was angry, lost, and confused. Here comes P!NK with an album, just after a break up from her husband (they got back together too). She was mad and  hurt. Her songs were emotional and I related so well. One song was fierce,  SO WHAT, one song was desperate,  Please don’t leave me. Many of the songs cycled, like I did, it really was a release to me to listen to this music. Her music. Her pain. My pain.

Obviously, her music touches a lot of people in that same way. She touches our darkness, our suffering, what we hide and don’t want to show the world but she does. She brings it out in song. No, she is not a Christian artist that so many of my friends listen to. She is different. She taps our vulnerabilities and what we don’t understand sometimes. Something, God puts in all of us, maybe so we can relate more to the broken and the hurt when we need to. That’s how it seemed for me at least.

I was surprised how those feelings, from those hellish two months, bubbled to the surface so quickly. It shocked me a little bit and it took me a while to process.  I was able to let them go,  as I was captured by her performances again, again with each song.  How at ease she was.  How talented. Her voice soared the entire night without fail.  She gave it her all every note. Her smile, absolutely stunning.

She IS a  Rockstar, but like a Rockstar that you could hang with and not feel uncomfortable. That impressed me.

After the concert, I checked Wikipedia to learn more about her. Interesting life, just as I thought. Cinderella story.  Check it out, if you get a chance.

In the end, what a great concert. All the above applied. I was blessed by her voice and energy,  fated to be there with my friends,  and lucky to enjoy it all with the zest of life.