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Things I’m Doing on Spring Break
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Spring break may have taken place mid-March in Kansas (which I utilized by frequenting coffee shops that are usually ridden with students), but in the South they wait until it’s good and hot before heading on break. And since that’s the region that my current satellite office is located (in my in-laws’ living room), now is when I’m utilizing my pre-summer break. Don’t worry, responsibility police and full-time workers, I’ve been planning and working extra hours for weeks to make up for my time off. So now I can do things like: Road Trip My neck pillow already is packed. Being Touristy If I had a song about favorite things, this would be in it. Shopping Yes please. Getting Adventurous With Foods But not TOO adventurous. Treat Drinks Sbucks, McD’s, Leaf & Bean, Dunkin’, E Bros., locals — I’m coming for all of you. Chillin’ For realz.    

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How is Deployment “Really”? A Possible Series

At least once a week, I’m told about what a severe injustice it is that my husband is deployed. As an overwhelming majority, folks can’t fathom how it is to be in my shoes. In the literal sense, they’re small and unsupportive, and in the figurative way, it’s unbearable, apparently. And acquaintances would like to let me know that as much as possible. It’s not a statement I fault them for; I do it too. Drawing personal experiences is how humans relate. And when there’s no memory to be found, we say things like, “I can’t imagine,” “I have no idea what you’re going through,” and “What is that even like?” A tactic I always pull with 9-to-5ers or anyone who has 20/20 vision. But here’s the thing: we don’t come pre-equipped in life. We learn once things happen. You swim by being in water. You get better at sports […]

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My Real and Ridiculous Fear of Hotel Waffle Makers
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Real life confession ya’ll: I’m afraid to use hotel waffle makers. They, much like having the remote pointed in my direction, are incredibly unnerving. Just how hot do those things get? And why am I making waffles in a public setting, like I’m some type of short-order cook that only serves herself? No thanks, I’ll stick to my yogurt cup and weirdly moist muffin instead. But thanks for the concern, guy who wore his pajamas to the dining area. To date, I have never made a waffle that wasn’t frozen first; I am too freaked to even consider the irons. Even as an adult who is mostly logical and owns some things, I won’t touch those danger-breeding devices. While home versions do seem less terrifying, they take up serious cabinet space. Which is why I’ve never purchased one. Pancakes, in contrast, are made with a more universal dish – a fact that […]

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Avoiding the Crowd in Holiday Season
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Crowds are the worst. Like, terrible to deal with. Add on sales or the threat of not getting the perfect gift (at the perfect price), and the mobs get even angrier. Which, in turn, makes me angrier. It’s also why, this holiday season, I’ll be doing much of my shopping online via Amazon (why yes I’ll take household goods, gifts, and non-perishable snacks all in the same delivery). Or at Orschlens, that place has everything … minus the people. It’s usually full of farmer’s who are nice and open the door for short women and when I say “full” I mean maybe there is five to nine, depending on the time of day. Anyway, I hate crowds and encourage others to do the same. This holiday season, keep yourself around the people you actually want to be around by: Saying No It’s ok to “let people down.” In fact, as long as you’re up-front […]

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Why Don’t I Have an Advice Column?
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This week I found out one of my favorite email columnists was quitting her job. Or rather, leaving her keyboard for one that’s greener. Which just means she’s writing for something/one different now. Her name is Emily AKA Prudie, and I have been reading her column on Slate for years. It’s a setup where people write in about their strange and unusual problems – sometimes simply to complain. And she puts most of them in their place – sometimes letting writers know they’re right, other times pointing out how wrong they are. It’s an incredible form of entertainment. No, I didn’t agree with her 100% of the time, and no I’m not really over how she ignored my email asking whether or not it was ok to give a single (bigger) gift for a shower and wedding. But that doesn’t mean I wont miss her. In reading this announcement, I […]

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The “How We Met Story” And How I Got My New Last Name

Like any couple, my husband and I are asked – like, hundreds of times per day – how we met. People are interested. They want to know how we found each other. What circumstances in the universe that brought two strangers together. And at what point we decided it was forever – you know, the whole love story bit. All of the parts right until “happily ever after,” because after that it’s just the boring sections of life. Why else would fairytales use it as their closer? But our answer is always the same. Or rather, our separate answers are always the same. I fumble a little. While Bo, my now-husband, goes straight for the jugular. He tells them that we met online, and it was through Plenty of Fish. Because he has no fears, and I’m not as quick to admit to my semi-questionable choice in dating sites – no offense PoF, […]

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Yard Protocol: What Goes When it’s Not Your Grass?
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As a life-long resident of small towns, I know what it’s like to be a neighbor. To recognize people’s names and cars, and to look out the window every time they pull in. That’s just keeping an eye on the neighborhood. Like any concerned citizen should do. Sure I’ve had music that was too loud or cat(s) who stared too much, but all-in-all, I like to think I’m not terrible at living next door. Even going as far as to wave or sweep off shared sidewalks … or at least not shove my leaves onto your section. On the flip side, however, I’ve also had some disgusting neighbors. Ones that were obnoxious, blocked in my car (or put up cinder blocks so there was only a single exit), or showed up unannounced. With or without baked goods. And ones that think their dogs are only allowed to poo on other […]

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