Thursday, June 16, 2016


Here's a completely non-original statement: I have a love/hate relationship with summer.

I'll happily admit that having kids who are now mostly independent means I often let them play videogames or watch TV so I can grab an extra hour of sleep. I put in endless hours of sleepless nights so I've earned this.

Having three children who are total homebodies just like their mom makes me happy enough to throw them a party as a way of saying thank you for not making me go out in public every day. We've worked so hard to make our home a place of happiness, love, and relaxation so honestly why would we ever leave anyway? I mean, there's also the fact that the heat index all week is gonna be above 100 degrees (Dear Oklahoma weather, I super don't like you) and our car has no air conditioning.

Yet there's this stigma attached to staying home. Others may call it social anxiety, which I like to joke about but really don't think is my problem. I suppose it could've been labeled that way in high school and college? But not really. Honestly I think it was just a case of no self esteem and feeling like I had no one and like I wasn't worth anyone's time. That doesn't exactly equate social anxiety.

But now, at nearly 36 I find myself a changed woman. A grown-up, in the basic sense of the label. I keep a pretty tidy house, cook at least one meal for my family a day, and have managed to keep one houseplant alive for a little over a year. Just don't look at the plants on my porch or around our house. Again, I remind you of the heat index and I just don't care enough to stand out there and water them.

While others snapchats and instagrams are filled with summer adventures mine would bore most to tears. We go out on the weekends when dad and the air conditioned vehicle are home, sure, but most of the time you'll find us in front of the window units with books in our hands or laptops open, eating as many snacks as our bellies can handle. This'll also explain to any of my fitbit friends why I usually average about 4,000 steps a day. The me three years ago would be ashamed. The me now is just so proud that I've learned to finally relax.

All of that nonsense was just a little backstory so you could fully appreciate the fact that I got my ass up at 6:15am yesterday so I could drop Cory off at work and keep the truck, then taking the kids out for an afternoon at the science museum. I mean...can I get some applause?

And in the spirit of remembering the summer of 2016, which shall be labeled as the summer of laziness, I have a goal to make a few tiny movies of those rare moments when we do leave the house. I'm not gifted in the art of videography or cinematography, but damn these are fun to make. Seeing these kids frozen in time while moving is just so good.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Writing Woes

Most of my day has been spent brainstorming on paper about a new story I'm trying to breathe life into. I saw my protagonist months ago. No lie, it was like I could see her with my own eyes, staring back at me. She wears a lot of denim, has thick handfuls of dark hair, and her laugh often carries over the crowd of the bar where she serves drink after drink to people who sometimes come in at the end of a long day just to see her smile. I love her already. 

Then it stopped, all the turning in my brain. The wheel screeched to a grinding halt and I've been staring at a blinking cursor ever since. Sure I wrote some random things here and there, a lot of which I think I'll wind up erasing completely.

While writing down thoughts into my new lipstick red journal I scribbled, 

"Stupid idea. Scrap it."

Then I underlined it. Twice. Then took another sip of beer and thought about shutting my laptop and walking away. 

The realization that this specific plot point I was scrapping would make me almost despise my character if I were just a reader was a humbling moment. The other story, (not this one that's been driving me insane) that I think I've finally finished after multiple drafts, was one of the easiest things I've ever done. Don't get me wrong, the emotional shit I went through while writing it was nearly devastating, but I wrote largely from personal experience. It was a story that I wished could've happened to me, and I had so many real life moments I simply turned into a work of fiction. 

And now here I am, trying to figure out this character's conflict. Is it internal or external? Emotional or intellectual? What the fuck does she even want from life?
Honestly, I have no idea. Will it come to me in the middle of the night when I wake up for the third time to pee? Maybe it'll happen while I'm driving down the road trying to tune out the sound of the kids fighting from the back seat. Could it be a slow burn where the ideas come in bits and pieces that I have to put together like a insane puzzle? Then of course there's the likelihood that it may never come at all. 

Maybe my entire writing existence will be wrapped up in this one novel that may never travel anywhere, but bounce around from friend to friend, most of whom won't have the time to open it and read because life is insane and everyone has their own shit to deal with. 

Either way, this'll be me sitting at the kitchen table until the end of time. 

That's what happens when you are no longer employed and say, "Finally, I can write as my job!".

It was a trap. I trapped myself. Please send carbs. 

Tuesday, May 3, 2016


I have this problem, or maybe it's a sickness. Hold on, I'm gonna google to see if there's an actual medical-like term for it...

Okay, that was fruitless, but google does think I should be in a home for the mentally ill. (Fuck off, google.)

I've mentioned this problem to friends before and have nearly always gotten the same response, which is, "I do that too!" Either I only spend my time with people equally as insane as myself (not completely implausible), or the more likely explanation is that we all want what we may never acquire.

That thing I do is that I place my belongings mentally into other people's homes. Bigger homes. Homes with more natural light, better storage, and taller ceilings. My books will go over along that wall, a desk in that corner, and that's where I'll hang my favorite piece of artwork we were gifted from Tessa. I re-decorate for your guys. I'll paint over your beige walls with white, then will probably paint your most prominent wall one nice statement color. That giant sectional looks so comfy but again, I'm not a fan of anything in the beige family so in my world it's black...maybe even red or a nice blue, depending on the size of the room.

This compulsion doesn't stem from me wanting to be you. Really, for the most part, I love my life and the people in it. I'm even more in love with Cory now than I was when we got married almost 13 years ago. My children are little geniuses who make me laugh and want to be a better person. Otto even used the word "fucking" hilariously in a sentence today and after telling him, "Maybe don't say that around anyone else," I felt a surge of pride.

Faith and I moved some furniture around last night, switching the spot that usually holds my reading chair with the dining table. It's what I do when things start to feel stale and I'm feeling a little insane. Our home may be small, but it doesn't mean I can't get creative with furniture placement.

That restlessness I've been feeling lately all started with lustful talks of building our dream home, as we like to do a few times a year. In that dream home there's a wide open first floor and a loft like area upstairs that holds our bedrooms. My laundry room is gigantic and it houses a family closet where everyone's clothes are stored. It's the only thing the Duggar's have ever shown me that I've taken a lesson from, that family closet. I want to wash, dry, fold, then store everyone's clothes in one single room.

My wise friend Missy has corrected me more than once when I start ranting about hating money. "You don't hate money. You hate the need for money, but you love money." (Sorry, Missy, I'm paraphrasing.) See? She's so wise, you guys, and I'd be lost without her.

I hate the need for money just as much as I hate my desire for more. God, do I want money, so much money. While visiting my platonic life partner a few months ago she asked me, "If you had unlimited money and could have any car you wanted, what would you have?"

I started my answer by saying, "Something modest," then that somehow ballooned grotesquely into me wanting a white Cadillac Escalade with gold rims. I still stand by this answer by the way, should Ellen happen to come across my blog and feel the need to surprise me with one.

Those dreams of house building have taken a bit of a turn into something more feasible, which is maybe trying to trick someone into giving us a home improvement loan. We live in a single wide trailer that has no storage (Not an exaggeration. It has NONE.) and shitty windows that let every freezing gust of wind or stifling hot breeze seep into our living spaces like a plague.

Here's the thing about that trailer though. It's paid for. A few years ago we got our tax return directly deposited into our account, hauled ass to the bank, slammed the money down on the table and screamed, "You don't own us any more!" At least that's how it went down in my head. It was super aggressive and I chanted like Linda Belcher on the way out.

This morning I was looking at the scene around me. Our living room was freshly painted and floors were replaced when we had a tragic accident involving our window unit last summer. The kitchen cabinets are awaiting their facelift, but I'd been holding out for new countertops around our sink. Then it dawned on me...why? Why am I waiting? My guess is that I have more of that martyr-dom mindset I've always disliked in my mom than I'd care to admit. If I take charge, lay down the drop cloths, and get elbow deep in some paint then what the hell will I complain about?

I spend so much time looking at Pinterest boards wishing I could magically wave a wand and live in this different home with different things. Bigger things that are new and shiny, not the same toaster that's missing its little knob you actually use to push the toast down into the slots, or the beige (remember...I despise beige) couch that's comfy but smells a little bit like cats no matter how much you febreeze it because it was a welcomed hand me down.

If you'll look to the right you'll see my boys. The one at the table is actually doing schoolwork as we feverishly try to finish the rest of his work for the year by the end of the week. The one on the couch? Yeah, I have no idea what he was doing. It was early, I hadn't showered yet, and the thoughts of what I needed to get done this week were still echoing through my head in their bitchiest mocking tone.

Down on the floor are Cory's shoes, almost perfectly placed as to be tripped over by me on my way to the bathroom early this morning. And on the couch to your left I'd like to direct your attention to his socks, abandoned there at something like 2:40am after he'd stumbled in, exhausted, after working a long shift at the library.

The little hearts along the ceiling will never be taken down because they remind me of Valentine's Day when the same man who trips me with his shoes cut them out, then helped me string them up so things would feel more cheery on a day when I needed the cheer.

My kitchen countertop is cluttered with food. It nearly always is, but good God there's food there, and that hasn't always been the case. And hey, I have yet to be completely infested with ants yet!

I complain so much, and to those who are nearly always at the top of my recent texts (hi, Audrey), I'm kinda sorry. Not completely sorry, just because sometimes ya gotta bitch, know what I mean? But kinda sorry just because I need to take these steps back more often. I have a home and can never be homeless. I have electricity and super fast wifi so I can spend my days torturing myself even further on Pinterest, or reading fanfiction on Tumblr, or maybe even writing a few sentences here and there.

Everything is about perspective anyway. And from that spot in my home this morning, things didn't look all that bad.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

February 2016's 10 on 10

Information on this project: 10 pictures taken on the same day, then posted on the 10th of each month.

So far 2016 has been the year of sickness in our house, despite my best efforts to keep everyone healthy.

Thankfully we had a break in there for both of my baby boys and I to feel well enough for a midweek trip to the science museum.

Monday, January 18, 2016

The Year of Scout

For a little over a year now there's been a shift in my psyche. A shift that I'd encourage everyone to adapt into their lives as well. And that shift is that if I'm unhappy with a situation then I do everything within my power to distance myself from it.

2016 has already been a pretty less than shiny year so far, but some of the reasons why it's been shit have been my fault completely. It won't be that way any longer. 

While I resist the urge to form a protective bubble around our incredible family and refuse to ever leave the house again (as of right now it's Monday and I haven't left since Friday, save for going to Sonic a few times) I am thinking about things in our lives that shape us.

Relationships. Jobs. Whether we decide to eat that fifth cookie from the package or not, therefore expanding our waist lines just a teensy bit more. All of these things make us who we are. 

Have you guys ever watched "The Middle"? If not I highly recommend it.

My favorite person on "The Middle" is Sue Heck. 

This is Sue Heck. Eternal optimist, feminist, hard worker, and bad ass bitch who takes shit from no one. 

Sue Heck should be everyone's hero. She declared last year to be, and I quote, "the year of Sue". The year when everything would go her way, even if she had to force its hand. The year when life dealt her blow after blow and she never gave up. 

Okay, Sue. Teach me. This will be the year of Scout. 

First step? Turn in resignation to focus more on my family and writing. If something else comes along that requires less stress and time out of my life when I'm not actually at work? Well, I'll cross that bridge if we come to it. 

Next step? State budget cuts, bullies, and priority shifting means we're considering bringing the kids back home to learn in the next school year. This is the year when I will become more organized.

This is the year when I will say, "I love you but no, I don't want to go do that thing tonight."

This is the year when someone will ask, "How are you?" and I will actually do my best to answer sincerely, honestly, and with a little less cynicism. 

This is the year when I will take longer showers, watch awful TV without feeling like I need to apologize for it, buy the super fuzzy warm socks that won't break our budget because they're less than 5 dollars, and feel a little less ridiculous when I do my idiotic Yoda impression just to make my kids laugh.

Come at me, 2016. I'm gonna slay you.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

January 2016's 10 on 10

Goodbye, 2015, you were a good year. Goodbye, The Hours. You were a fun project, but now it's on to the next one.

This year I'll be tackling the 10 on 10 challenge. And I use the word challenge because it's going to be a bit of an undertaking for me...between kids, writing, life, and work. But I'm gonna give it my all, dammit.

The idea is to take 10 pictures throughout one entire day, then share those pictures with all of you on the 10th of every month. The best thing about the project is that it will be shared across multiple blogs via a blog roll, so be sure to follow my link, then their link, so on and so forth. I can't wait to see everyone's days unfold.

I have the extreme pleasure of linking you to the wonderful Staci Lee Kennelly's 10 on 10 here:

This month's 10 on 10 was brought to you courtesy of Otto turning 7, giving us an excuse to go see "Star Wars" for the third time during winter break. 

After the movie came pizza with friends, then back home for RPG lessons.

Friday, November 20, 2015

thoughts on 11/20

I scrolled past a video on Facebook today that stated it would teach me how to master the leg break wedgie move with a hula hoop. This seems like something you all should know, that such a move exists and is out in the world for you to learn then wow your co-workers with.

My finger nails are entirely too long. After tearing apart the house last night looking for clippers I came to the conclusion that one of two things happened. 1. They fell out of my bag in Kansas City, lost forever. 2. Someone in my house used them and didn't put them back where they belong. Typing right now is torturous. I might scream. The most curious thing is that the fingernails on my left hand grow at three times the rate that the ones on my right do.

Missing just one day ONE DAY of work meant that I walked back into a library this morning that had obviously experienced the real life "Goosebumps" movie. Stine's monsters came tearing through here, causing panic and chaos, and leaving stacks of books scattered everywhere with no indication as to which ones had been checked back in or which ones needed to just be shelved, despite my signs guiding others on where to place such books. Nightmare fuel.

One of my students wrote me two narrative essays in the last week. The first was on her hate for primates, the second on her distaste for other people's loud chewing and other annoying habits. Checking into adopting her.

Daniel Smith and Sufjan Steven's cover of Daniel Johnston's "Worried Shoes" is the greatest cover ever performed. Of this I am sure and will fight anyone to the death who says otherwise.

Speaking of Sufjan, nearly the entire first draft of my stupid book was written to Carrie and Lowell played on repeat. Should it get published some day I'm hoping he'll realize it and delight me with a private performance of the entire album. In his underwear.

Cory's mom wanted to know if I wanted to cook an entire Thanksgiving meal with her. I don't. I just want to eat pizza and not move for five days please and thank you.

I sat next to the most eclectic mix of people during my recent trips on a plane. I hate flying but I love airports. I'm thinking about visiting there to just sit and watch people walk past me, trying to decipher where they're going and why. Will this get me arrested? To some people's eyes (probably TSA's) I look racially ambiguous. Maybe not be the best plan....

I took pictures of a model last weekend who later told someone he couldn't remember my name but that I was a "nice lady". Said model was higher than Willie Nelson on fucking 4/20. Also, I don't think I deserved the words "nice" and "lady" since I'm under the age of 50.

Before getting in my car this morning I took several selfies. Don't be embarrassed of anything you guys do today.

"I can't decide whether I wanna cut my bags or let them grow out."-something I said last night, and also millions of other women across the globe every damn day.

Ben Folds is a foul mouthed angel sent to us from Heaven to serenade us with his piano and make us feel sexually aroused for really no good reason at all. Also, I don't like going to shows where the crowd doesn't feel as though they can sing along at the top of their goddamned lungs. It's uncomfortable and makes it even more awkward when I'm the only person in the room screaming out song lyrics.

I saw too many women posting awful things about men on social media yesterday for National Men's Day. While I wonder if men really need their own day since they already run so much of the world I'm here to say that most of it was completely unfair. Dear Men, I love you.

Uber drivers who look like they double time as a lizard king and tell you smell nice because they're hungry should not be Uber drivers.

This has been thoughts that could've potentially Facebook status updates and/or tweets, brought to you by yours truly.

In conclusion...don't listen to everyone else, take more selfies. Post more selfies. Seeing other people's faces makes me happy, especially if you're happy when you're taking said selfies. Fuck society that says selfies are a bad thing. Take control of how you want the world to see you. Wanna Photoshop our your double chin? Do it. Beyonce does. Wanna shoot the selfies from up higher to remove ten pounds? Do it. Wanna post a picture of your shoes and the coffee your hand. Fucking do it.