Tuesday, August 24, 2010

the aftermath

So it's been 5 days (or so...guess it depends on how you count) since the accident. I feel like I've learned a lot in those days. Let's see if I can collect my thoughts long enough to share.

1. Most people (family, friends, co-workers, and strangers) are extraordinarily kind. I guess that's kind of a paradox-- most people can't be extraordinary, right? But they are. Matt and I have been overwhelmed by kindness and generosity. I am so thankful that we live near Matt's parents (and, for now, all of his siblings!)...they took SUCH good care of us the day of the accident, bringing us every meal, picking up Lola and taking care of her for the day, bringing us movies...it was wonderful. Our wonderful friends the Gurleys and the Moores provided us with entertainment and comfy couches and sweet babies and good food all weekend. And they let me play my "I was hit by a TRUCK!!!!" card as often as I wanted, for any reason. :) On Sunday morning, I called my parents and told them I missed them. They changed all of their Sunday plans in order to drive up here (two hours away) and spend the day with us. My co-workers and bosses have been so understanding and wonderful...mostly insisting I stay home as long as I needed and more or less telling me I was ridiculous to keep checking in and worrying about the things I was missing at school. When I went back for a half-day yesterday, they made me "rest" for at least half of my "day." And...as it turns out, they were right...I was a little over-ambitious to go back yesterday. I didn't make the same mistake today (obviously!).

Anyway. This is quite a long bullet point, but we've just been overwhelmed! On a related note...

2. People all want to help you. This is evidenced by every single person who wrote on my facebook wall or photos, saying "let me know if there's anything I can do." And some of these people live in different states! On Friday, I started thinking about trying to take up every single person on their offer. As I laid at home by myself on Friday, I really wished I had a puppy or small dog to sit in my lap (sorry Lola, you're too BIG!). I thought about calling up someone who had said "let me know..." and asking them to go get me a puppy. Let's see if they can really walk the walk, right?? Just kidding. Although I will still take someone up on the puppy thing, if you have one available. And if it won't require any further investment of money for the duration of its life. Keep me posted.

3. So far, all of the three insurance companies I've had to deal with have been very pleasant. I just felt the need to say that because I know that insurance companies usually get a bad rap, and I'm usually the one giving it to them. I guess being the victim makes people feel sorry for you or something, because everyone I've spoken with has been very helpful and kind. Of course, once I find out what my settlement is going to be, I might start singing a different song. Ha, we'll just have to see.

4. I am not a stay-at-home-alone kinda girl. For real. And while I still have great ambitions of being a stay-at-home-mom (or retired by the age of 30)...I just can't do it when I'm all alone, with nowhere to go, and not feeling great. Surely it's different when there's someone else to take care of, right?? But this staying home, laying on the couch thing...it's not for me. It's why I convinced myself I could go to work yesterday.

5. An F-750 (like the truck that hit me) weighs, on average, between 20,000 and 37,000 pounds. A Pathfinder (like mine) weighs 4,000 pounds. Thank you Matt for digging up that useful tidbit!

6. Matt is the best husband ever. I might have to save all my tales of how wonderful he's been for a whole 'nother blog post. This one is getting long enough. But take my word for it-- he really is THE best.

I just realized I uploaded pictures to put on this post, but forgot to do it. And now I'm so tired that it seems like way too much work. Maybe later.

So I'm home for another day, trying to get stronger. My main goal is to be strong enough (and un-bruised enough) to enjoy the wedding weekend ahead of us. I have a bachelorette party Thursday night, the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner (and other assorted activities) all day Friday, and the wedding on Saturday. At this point, I can't imagine having the energy or stamina to make it through all of that! So hopefully I'll get a lot stronger between now and then. I'm also guessing that I'll be buying a car at some point (or needing to, anyway) and the thought of that is so overwhelming I just try to not think about it.

Also, my hyper-organized couponing notebook (three ring binder containing various other folders inside) was in the car with me when the accident occurred. It did not fare well. We recovered most of the pieces (sheets of coupons), but the organization is completely shot and there is virtually no way to put it back in order. I am completely overwhelmed looking at it. This is almost four months worth of coupons (and I buy two to four papers every Sunday!) and they're pretty much useless at this point! I had to go to Publix Sunday and buy groceries with NO COUPONING and it almost killed me. This is one of the tasks I thought about calling up someone for. "Hey, so you said if you could do anything to let you know...well, I have about 48,000 sheets of coupon inserts...if you could just figure out how to organize them back by date, insert, and which paper they're from (ie: 8/1, RedPlum, AJC)...that would be great, thanks!"

Ugh. Thinking about that has me totally stressed. Time for my morning nap. Goodbye!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

not at fault

Ah. Those three lovely words every car insurance company loves to hear. My company got to hear those blessed words to day. The other guy's? Not so much.

I had to hoist myself up out of there!! Luckily there was a big man standing there to catch me. Scary!!
The remains of my Pathfinder. So long, car. You were good while you lasted. I'll try to remember the better days. And not how you've failed me like 3 times in the last month by having your starter break and requiring towing. And how I JUST BOUGHT A NEW STARTER for you. And now you up and crash on me.

On second thought...I should probably be thanking the Pathfinder. I think if I was in a smaller car, I might not have just hopped up and walked away.

But my shoes somehow flew off in the wreck. So I was walking around (on shattered glass) barefoot for about an hour and a half until they dug out my shoes. Weird.

That's the truck that hit me. Um, yeah. It's slightly huge. When I sent my mom this pic, she thought it was one of the emergency vehicles. She kept asking, "so was it a truck like Dad's [Tundra] that hit you?" I was like "mom, I sent you a picture! It was a BIG TRUCK!! Not a pickup truck!" and then she fainted. OK, not really. But she was surprised.

I went to the ER. There were shards of glass ALL UP IN MY CLOTHES. Such as filling up the bottom of my bra. Haha. It was a special moment to discover that. Please excuse me, doctors, while I pick glass out of my boobies. And my ears.

My hair had been in a ponytail (big surprise) that morning. Somehow it came out during the flipping. Apparently they just don't make hair bands like they used to. So anyway, since my hair was down and it was hot outside, the back of my neck became a nice sweaty mess of hair and dirt and glass. Lovely!

Someone retrieved my backpack (containing my work laptop...bummer) and my lunchbox from the road. Matt brought my lunch inside this afternoon when we got home. There had been a pack of crackers (like the pre-packaged cheese cracker things) (but all natural...please, don't think I would contaminate my body) and it was completely CRUSHED...as in, the same texture as sugar or something. Very interesting. The peach managed to...explode. And the grapes? They're now wine. Or something.

But I walked away. Evidently I'm sturdier than my lunch.

I'm now stuck on the couch/bed for the foreseeable future. My neck hurts like CRAP and the painkillers aren't killing anything. I haven't been able to sleep because I can't get comfortable. Ugh. Matt will probably go back to work tomorrow, so I'm taking applications for babysitters. Right now he's going to get a rental car for me...not that I have any desire to drive. But if it's a sweet enough ride, maybe I will. Ha.

I feel very blessed to be fine. Looking at the scene, the EMT people, police, and onlookers said there's no way I should have walked away from that the way I did.

When my car started flipping, I screamed "JESUS JESUS JESUS JESUS!!!!!" until it stopped. I knew as long as I could keep screaming, I would be okay. And I am.

Thank you so much for all your prayers, notes, facebook comments, and calls. I feel very loved. Sorry for the randomness of this blog. Hey, maybe the drugs are working after all! Ha.

PS. Dear Bravo TV Network: Please start a Real Housewives of New Jersey marathon STAT. Thanks. Love, Erika

Sunday, August 15, 2010

sunday sundry

Does that title even make sense? In my mind, "sundry" means "assorted" or "varied." I'm sure I could go look it up, but that seems like a lot of work right now. I'll just take a chance. Grammar-istas (or -istos), feel free to let me know.

Anyway, I have absolutely nothing of excitement to share, only a few random things. My weekend has been okay. Friday, as you know, was pretty miserable. But we managed to salvage Saturday and enjoy ourselves, and today has been a bit better as well.

Yesterday we spent some time at Home Depot. This is always a fun (but expensive) past-time for us. Do you remember the china cabinet we're resurrecting? Don't think that a lack of progress updates means we've forgotten our project. Renovations are well underway, although I must admit I can't really take the credit for most of the work these days. I guess Matt is encouraged to keep at it because the dismantled cabinet is taking up his car's parking spot in the garage...and maybe he wants to get this project done so that he can have his spot back. That's my theory, anyway. So anyway, this project has led us on many shopping ventures to Home Depot. I remember when we first got the cabinet, we were so excited by the "steal" of a price...well, trust me, the actual buying of the cabinet has been FAR cheaper than any of the subsequent trips to Home Depot! There's the power tools, the lumber to replace warped/broken wood, the stains, the hardware, the sanding pads and belts, the special brushes for the stains and the poly...ay yi yi. But anyway. So yesterday as we're perusing the aisles again, I came across something awesome-- and completely un-related to the china cabinet.

When I saw this, it reminded me that I've seen it advertised in some DIY magazine before and that I'd thought it was the coolest thing! You see, our house is slap full of those ugly brass doorknobs. Like this:

And personally, they offend me. Or at least my eyes. And I don't understand why a house built in 2003 would even have them. Didn't people stop liking those in like...1986? Anyway. So of course it's been on my to-do list since we bought the house...replace those stinkin' doorknobs. But then let's face it. My to-do list for this house was long. Many things on the list were like...actually essential for our being able to habitate here (flooring, for example. And working toilets). So over the past year, I've never really gotten around to replacing perfectly-functioning doorknobs. A new doorknob, even the cheapest Home Depot-branded ones, are still like $8. And we probably need about 20 of them. And it's just never been high enough on the priority list. But when I saw that spraypaint yesterday, I had an epiphany-- just PAINT the danged things!! It seemed perfectly brilliant to me. The paint was like $4 or something, so it would definitely be worth the gamble.

And here's what we have today:

Yay!! A less-hideous doorknob! Please note that I did not think to paint the...whatever the thing that attaches to the doorjamb to the right of the knob is. Ha. Isn't that klassy? Don't worry, I'll get it later. So anyway, that was my DIY project for the weekend (day). One doorknob. We'll see if I get around to some more.

This morning, as we ate our cereal, Matt and I had a little competition of sorts. Not against each other (because we always have to be on the same team), but between our many boxes of cereal. Yes, we are the only two people living in this house. And yes, every single one of these boxes has to be on the table if we're eating cereal. I mean, who knows? What if you have a sudden mid-bowl urge to add a little Fiber One to your bowl of Total? You wouldn't want to have to walk all the way to the kitchen, would you?? Right, exactly.

Anyway, we decided to pick the ultimate health winner from our five contenders (Total, Multigrain Cheerios, Frosted Mini Wheats, Fiber Plus Antioxidants, and Fiber One) We went nutrient-by-nutrient down the Nutrition Facts labels and gave the "winner" of each category (you know...whoever had the least calories won...whoever had the most potassium won...etc.) a tally mark. If multiple cereals tied for winning, they both could get the tally mark.

It was a very intense competition.

I just had a thought that I should let yall vote on who you think won. But then I realized you can probably read the tally marks in that picture, so there would be way too much cheating going on.

The winner was...Total!

How exciting. Unfortunately, Total did not win in the very-subjective Taste Competition. I declare that winner to be Frosted Mini Wheats. I might change my mind tomorrow, though. My cereal loyalties are very changeable.

And that's pretty much been the weekend. Doorknobs and cereal. What can I say, I'm a very exciting person. :)

Friday, August 13, 2010


How was my day?

Well, in lieu of showing you a picture of my own messy, makeup-streaked face, here are other girls that manage to look glamorous in the midst of their tears.

My afternoon has been more of the nasty, heaving, nearly-gag-inducing crying. The super un-glamorous kind. The kind where you never think you'll be able to stop crying. Ever. And you don't even really want to.

It's Friday the 13th, isn't it? I'm not really superstitious, but...wow, this day (afternoon, really) has really sucked.

They say that misery loves company, but mostly I just want to be alone. Looking at these pictures makes me feel like I need to keep things in perspective. I know that things could be worse. I know there are greater sorrows in this world. More injustices than I can imagine. People have experienced much greater losses than I have. People have battled infertility for much longer than I have.

But right now, my own pain is the most salient. And all I can do is cry.

Maybe hope will rise up again tomorrow. Maybe my optimistic self will take back the reigns of my emotions. Maybe I will have new faith, and maybe our doctors will have new ideas and new plans. Maybe I'll believe that God really is in control and that He has a plan and that it's gonna be good.

But not now. Right now, I'm just broken.

Monday, August 9, 2010


This has gotta be short and sweet, since I'm sitting in my car in the parking "lot" (four streetside spots) of my town's library. That's right...wireless internet is a no-go at our house lately, which leaves me mooching off the free wireless provided by the library. I know you're jealous-- not only is my town's police department all Twitter-fied, but you can mooch off their wireless from the comfort of your own car. It's truly high-class. You really should consider moving here.

Or maybe I should consider paying for my own internet. Eh. We'll see.

Anyway...life updates include...not much. School started today and it was fine, although I've had a splitting headache since about 1:00. This is probably because I am forced to wait until like TWELVE THIRTY to eat lunch (and if you know me, you know my normal lunchtime is about 10:45. Or ealier). The kids did...well, about as well as you'd expect a bunch of four year olds to do on their first trip out of their mama's houses. We all survived, and look forward to the day in October or so when we feel like we all know what's going on. :)

I decided I'm not tan enough for my liking (probably since I haven't seen the sun since our beach vacation the first week of June) and since Matt's sister's wedding is in a few weeks (and I have to wear a dress in front of a bunch of people) I needed to remedy the situation. So I decided (for once in my life) to try to do this responsibly, by purchasing the Jergens gradual tanning lotion stuff. I'm hoping this is a slightly less sketchy experience then the ones in high school with the first generation self-tanners. Anyway, I've used it twice and don't feel any tanner. Anyone have any recommendations for a brand that works well? And doesn't smell weird? Maybe I'm just overly sensitive to the scent, but...it's not doing it for me. Anyway. I'll give it a week or two to work, and if not...tanning bed, here I come. Is it sad that I truly think it is too hot (and I never have the time) to just lay out? What is this world coming to??

Tonight while cooking dinner, Matt and I played a really fun version of "Would You Rather...". We did it with all TV shows. As it turns out, talking about TV can be almost as fun as actually WATCHING TV! Amazing. The best part was any time I could think of a combination that had Matt actually CHOOSE something super un-manly...usually Real Housewives of New Jersey. Ha. My personal fave: his picking RHoNJ over Nascar. THAT'S why I married him, girls. He's SMART!!!

That's all I have time for. It's getting dark, and I left Matt with Lola at the park so I could come here to do this. Best go fetch my family. :) Goodnight!

Monday, August 2, 2010

small towns with big dreams...

So I live in a small town, right? Really small. Most people who pass through it (on their way to Atlanta) never realize they even went through it. I like it here-- I live very close to Athens, so I have all the conveniences of the "big city" without all the detractors...like crime...and noise...and college students puking in my bushes at 3am.

Wait, first let me run down this little rabbit trail for a minute: OK, if I were to meet you in, say, a subway in NYC, and you asked where I was from, I'd tell you Athens. Athens, Georgia. And do you know what? This would absolutely KILL my dear sweet husband. Because it is, technically, I suppose, a lie. I'm not from Athens. I mean, my street address most certainly is not in Athens. And to claim otherwise is a blatant lie. That's his thinking, anyway. My thinking is...well, if I tell you the ACTUAL city I live in, you're going to give me a big ol' blank stare. And then I'll have to say "it's right outside of Athens." And THEN you might say "oh, okay!" Although-- let's just be honest-- if I'm as far away as NYC, I may have just said "Georgia" in the first place. And then only if you seemed interested or knowledgeable enough about the geography of my state (or you looked like a big college football fan) would I have gone into all the details about cities. Now, if you're a co-worker of mine in Athens where I work and you ask where I live, I'll tell you the actual city. Because we're looking at a smaller scale here. You may have actually heard of my town (although I still get a lot of blank stares). But to say the name of some teeny-tiny city is, in general, not productive. It just means you have to explain more. So I say I'm from Athens. And if you ask where I grew up, I say Augusta. Now if you happen to ALSO be from "Augusta," you may say, "oh, what part?" and then I'll say "Martinez," and then you might nod with understanding...but if I'd just said "Martinez," then raise your hand if that would have given you ANY concept of where I'm from? Thanks, that's what I thought.

That was a long rabbit trail, but it needed to be ran on. If you think I'm right about this city-specificity thing, feel free to comment. If you think Matt's right...well, send him a letter in the mail, cause he sure doesn't check his email/facebook/this blog/anything electronic.

Which brings me to the real point of this blog: my town. And technology.

I got my water bill in the mail on Saturday, and enclosed with the bill is my town's Monthly Newsletter. We have no newspaper or anything like that, and pretty much all that happens in a month can be summed up on one 8.5x11 sheet of paper. Yeah, we're pretty happenin'. Anyway, this month there was actually a pretty interesting factoid for me there. Our city's police department (which, FYI, actually closes at 10pm every night. And doesn't open up until 6 am!!!! So, good luck with any problems you may experience in the middle of the night-- hopefully the cops in the next town over are feeling generous enough to drive out and rescue you!!) has decided to foster a little more community togetherness by-- get this--



Can you believe it?! I was so excited, I immediately became a "fan" on FB. And hopped on over to Twitter to follow, and guess what?! I was the first person!! Poor lonely Twitter page with no followers. I will be your friend! I mean, there were all of two posts (regarding a road being closed due to construction).

I just checked back and now there are TWO followers. Me and some other guy. I'm thinking that if I ever get pulled over this should seriously come in handy. But Officer...we're facebook friends!! See, I was your first Twitter follower!! Or, you know, if someone breaks into my house at 10:03pm maybe I can just shoot 'em a direct message or something.

This whole embracing-technology thing has just tickled me pink. I mean, in all seriousness, I do think it's a great idea. I personally like the idea of knowing what's going on (and not having to wait until next month's newsletter arrives to fill me in) and having a less-formal way of reaching the police. It just seems a little hilarious in such a small town. I mean, to tell you the truth, I'm pretty surprised the good ol' boys down at the PO-leese department were even aware of the existance of Twitter/FB! So it seems that, just as Napoleon Dynamite's brother so eloquently mused, "[we] love technology." Even in a small town (that is technically not Athens....fine.)

Sunday, August 1, 2010

sunday night again?

Ugh! I feel like Sunday nights just creep up on me. They're not my favorite. Monday morning is always so looming and scary...I'm more a Friday at 5 kind of girl. How many more hours til' the next Friday at 5? Too many to count, I'm sure.

This week is pre-planning. Last week without kids. To tell you the truth, I'm so ready for the kids to come back. Since I work year-round no matter what, it's not like with many teachers who equate kids coming back with themSELVES coming back. I've been back. Only there haven't been kids for a few weeks. Which means working with adults, 24/7. Personally, I'll take the kids any day. Less drama, more fun. Count me in.

This weekend was a good one. Matt and I spent most of yesterday bargain-hunting. First we went to the flea market in Athens. It was the first time I've ever been there, and supposedly it's the largest in the state. It was an experience, that's for sure. Luckily it was cloudy yesterday morning, so it was only about 97 degrees and 97% humidity, which made it feel downright chilly. Except for inside the un-air-conditioned flea market. It did not feel so chilly in there. The whole thing was an interesting mish-mash of yardsales with random junk and more organized booths with lots of bootleg products. I wouldn't have felt comfortable buying most anything since I was pretty convinced it was all stolen or otherwise illegal (DVD of Inception, anyone? Cause I'm sure THAT's legit!). There were a few rows that were a little more farmer's market-esque, so I did end up buying a few mangos that look totally different than anything I've ever bought at Publix before. They're really good!

In the midst of this experience, we got word from the Boothes that they would be passing through Commerce (nearby city) on their way home from Atlanta and would be happy to meet up with us to deliver some items we left at their house last weekend. So after we had enough heat and stinkiness at the flea market, we headed towards Commerce. Lucky for us all, there's a huge outlet mall in Commerce, so passing the time wouldn't be too painful. We meandered through the throngs of people hitting up back-to-school sales and ended up only getting a few things at the Loft (formerly known as Ann Taylor). I got the Cutest Skirt on Earth (really, it's official) which I just spent no less than 25 minutes trying to find a picture on via Google Images, the Loft webpage, and I even went so far as to dig the tag out of my trash can so I could look up the item number. All this for nothing, I can't find a picture online. And I realize I could have put ON the skirt and done a whole photo shoot in the time I spent searching...but I'm not, cause I'm still wearing my sweaty workout clothes and I don't feel like changing and/or getting the skirt nasty. So you'll just have to take my word for it. It's cute.

We had a good time hanging out with the Boothes for an hour or so at Zaxby's, giving me some more Adoration-holding time, which is always good. I really wish they didn't live so far away!! Now that we've seen each other two weekends in a row, it makes me miss Stine even more!

Last night I had a hankerin' for some caramel corn (of all the random things...) and so I found this recipe and gave it a whirl. WARNING: Do not make this caramel corn. If you do, you may find yourself in a situation where, merely 18 hours after you made it, it's all gone. And you're stuck with the knowledge that you've consumed an entire stick of butter (plus a cup of sugar, corn syrup, and a bunch of other really healthy things) pretty much by yourself.

Not that this has ever happened to me or anything. I just wouldn't want it to happen to you. Anyway...

Today we did the church-and-lunch thing, followed by trips (yes, plural) to Publix(es) and the gym. I had a super great workout that's made me feel pretty good all afternoon. We just finished dinner and now it's about time to really come to terms with the fact that it IS Sunday night and tomorrow WILL BE a work day. GRRRRRR.

Why can't I live in a world where I get paid to stay home all day and watch Real Housewives of New Jersey while I eat caramel corn? Huh? Why?!!

And yes, lately I've found myself addicted to that show. It's trash, I know. But I sort of love it. Please tell me I'm not alone here.