Sunday, July 26, 2009

Moving Day

I have moved my blog to Why, you ask? Good question! Head on over and I'll fill you in.

There may be cookies and milk.

I know you are intrigued now.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

And then, there was clusterfuck.

Right before Derby Day, I made this secret bargain with God. Everyone around me was getting sick, I was starting to feel run down and living in eternal fear of getting sick before Derby. So I made a deal- let me be be well for Derby, and after that God could give me swine flu, SARS and TB all at once for all I cared. I didn't expect Him to actually do that- the day after Derby, I felt like I had been hit by a truck, and coughed, sneezed and otherwise expelled fluids from my body for about three weeks. The day I was ordered home from work, my computer died. And now, I am forced into the house with allergies, but at least with a borrowed computer.
But here are the highlights:

Kentucky Derby: Continued, of course, to be the best day ever. I was disappointed that I was not able to see Indian Blessing run, but thrilled to see Einstein and Cowboy Cal do such fierce battle down the stretch. If my computer was not dead, I would be able to share an awesome photo of Einstein walking out after the race with the replay of the photo finish playing on the prompter over his head. And then came Mine That Bird, who I initially thought was Fresian Fire coming from the back of the pack (the infield is not know for its clear view!), stunned the entire crowd. I believe my exact words were, "Wait.... who the fuck is number eight???" And I admit, I was more thrilled for Calvin than the horse, and was sure that he would never run that well again.
Preakness: Was better than the Derby. The race, I mean- nothing is better than the overall Derby experience. I've followed Rachel Alexandra all year, had to pull over to listen to her run in the Oaks because I was still on the road and was almost overcome with excitement. Watching it later was surreal. And then the Preakness... I actually road tripped it to the nearest track to be able to watch the race on a huge screen with other racing fans. The drive was worth it to see these grizzled, cigar-bearing, form-following old handicappers scream, "C'Mon, Rachel! C'Mon Rachel!" looking mysteriously misty-eyed as they conjured images of past great fillies. Watching her rip through those early fractions, pressured all the way by the boys and then holding off a late-charging Mine That Bird while struggling to get ahold of a track that she clearly didn't care for... it was beautiful. Her performance and Calvin's exuberance we enough to remind anyone of why they love horses and the sport. I can't wait to see a Rachel Alexandra/Zenyatta match-up a la Personal Ensign/Winning Colors. And with plucky little Mine That Bird's back to back stellar performances, the Belmont is shaping up to be an interesting race.
2007 Foal crop- Sunday, I saw one of the babies I delivered, out of a mare who was very special to me, run second in her very first race. I did not breathe for five furlongs, then burst into tears of pride. I am absolutely, utterly in-freaking-sane. She was beautiful.
The Cats- While out of town the other week-end, my cousin lost my cat Kody, the most special, wonderful, perfect cat on earth. She then lied about it, and tried to hide the fact that he was lost. This led to a hysterical, scared of the dark/coyotes me in the woods with Luna at midnight searching for him. Luckily, thankfully, wonderfully we found him. But I have now cancelled all of my trips for the rest of the summer. In happier(?) cat news, I was tricked into bringing home a 6 month old kitten from work. His name is Peabody, and he is a TURD! We loves him.
The Dogs- Luna has finally been diagnosed. On a last-ditch effort to avoid endoscopy, I tested her for food allergies, even though the food trial had been a failure. It failed because she was allergic to the hypoallergenic food! And everything else- she had high reactivity to 16 out of 24 allergens tested. She is now on a homemade diet, because it was utterly impossible to find a dog food without an allergen, and we had to minimize the number of things she could react to. She thinks me cooking for her is amazing. I think that she is worth it!
School- Starts in July. I am doing my very best to study for Clep exams in the meantime, but reading my Abnormal Psychology book is way more interesting...
Life- I have discovered that there are all sorts of cool things to do in my free time, so why the hell did I used to spend 60 or more hours a week at work hiding from it? There is more to life than that!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Home too late to write about Derby.... yet.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Two Days

My car is packed.
In 16 hours, I will leave work and head for Kentucky.
In less than 24 hours, I will be cheering for Rachel Alexandra the Oaks with my Kentucky friends.
In less than 48 hours, I will be at Churchill Downs with my friends and hundreds of beautiful horses.


To get excited, I started -re reading my Derby posts from last year, here, here, here, here, and here. Which of course made me excited, then sad, then angry as I remembered Eight Belles and the aftermath. Regardless of who wins, or who you want to win, let's pray that all the horses return to the barn safely this week-end (and every day).

Tuesday, April 28, 2009


You know what I think everyone who wants to return to school blocks out of their head? The nightmare that is scheduling classes. What a pain in the rear! Part of my issues are stemming from the fact that since I did not graduate from high school in this state, the school is convinced that my high school and first university I attended are lying about my AP scores. This must have been something that they cooked up while having lunch together, "Haha, won't it be funny to put fake AP scores on this girl's transcripts? If it says it on both, people will have to believe us, WA HA HA!!!!" So, I am having to order my scores from AP themselves (at $25 per score- thanks a lot!), because my new school won't take any word on the subject but theirs.
Luckily, my advisor was extremely cool, and is over-riding me into my chosen classes until the school gets my scores... because even though I have taken courses building off of Psych 101, when I go to register for upper-division classes, the computer sees that I don't yet have credit for Psych 101 and has a panic attack. I kid you not- red X's go up, shrieking noises are heard and the whole computer begins to shake. (I may or may not be causing two out of three of those symptoms....). And since she can only override specific sections, registration goes something like this:
My Psychology research lab opened up on a Wednesday! Frantic copying and e-mailing of course section ensues.
E-mail reply: You forgot to include your student number, waiver of ownership to first born child and the 3,000 digit secondary call number! When I get that, I'll override!
Hair pulling and looking up said numbers ensues. Waiver to ownership of firstborn child notarized.
Email reply All set, go ahead and register.
Log onto student account: ERROR!!! ERROR!!! This section is closed!
Shrieking noises and computer shaking commences.
Rinse and repeat!
I have now been doing this dance for ONE SOLID WEEK trying to register for summer and fall. In the meantime, I have also been studying for Clep Exams, since this school requires a couple gen eds that I had not been required to take before, and really don't want to take now. And I am cool with that- they want a full year of US history when I've only taken half so far? That's cool- I like history, and I took honors US history in high school- Clep exam, no sweat! Astronomy and Geology aren't good enough science classes? No sweat! I took honors Biology in high school, plus plenty of animal science classes- Clep exam, nooooo problem! But "pick another Humanities class because your entire Theatre minor, plus work experience in theatre outside of school can't count as a Theatre Appreciation class??????" COME ON! Too discouraged to fight the powers that be on that one, I say bring on the History of Western Civilization Clep exam (another honors class in high school). I know I sound like I am bitching just a wee bit (who, me?), but I actually am not terribly upset because it appears that I will be able to graduate within a year, 18 months at the most. I have already started researching grad school.... because I just like to keep adding the stress!
My biggest motivation for getting this all done, like NOW, is so that I will have nothing to stress over on Saturday. Saturday being the most special day of the year, the day that make all other days worth getting through. Yes, friends, this Saturday is the first Saturday in May- Derby Day! The day that I reserve the right to be a complete pain in the ass, to rouse my friends from their beds at 4:30am because GOD FORBID that I not get my spot on the rail, right in front of the huge TV screen, over looking the backside. The world will end if my view of barn chores is obstructed, or I am not close enough to the turf horses to feel their breath. And dang it, how would I be expected to keep myself from falling over in excitement if I didn't have the fence to cling to anyway? But, on the bright side, I always bring good snacks and am generally in such good spirits that I practically radiate sunshine, so every year I am forgiven for my neurotic MUST GET TO CHURCHILL DOWNS NOW! NOW! NOW! attitude and everyone has a good time.
This year, Derby is even more special because I will be getting to see friends who I love and have not seen in months due to my relocation. (Except those of you who will be out of town- that makes me sad, partially because I will miss seeing you, and mostly because it boggles my wee brain that anyone would travel anywhere other than Louisville, KY the first week-end in May!) Usually, I compare Derby to Christmas, Thanksgiving and New Years all rolled into one day.... this year, we'll throw Fourth of July into the mix. Here's to the best week-end... ever!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

The pre-panic attack

I have spent the last two hours going over the school catalog so that I will be ready to meet with my advisor tomorrow. I've been working this lovely little puzzle where I have juggled summer classes that last for both sessions with summer classes that are only in session one, and then ones that are only session two. Since all the credit hours are the same, I end up banging out more credit hours than if I took all full-summer courses. Cool, right?
Now, here's the hitch. While my transcript review did end up crediting me all of my classes that I had taken before, it did not reflect the AP exam scores that had gotten me out of Freshman English and Psychology 101. Obviously, Psychology 101 (or whatever equivalent) is a pre-req to EVERY CLASS I NEED TO TAKE. Oh, except for one upper-level literature class, which (you guessed it!) requires English 101. Now... my transcript reflects that I have already taken upper-division level Psychology courses in college. Is there really a chance that I will spend this summer taking Psych 101, a class that I tested out of while still in high school??? That stresses me, that stresses me a lot. But I will find out tomorrow... surely they are going to count my AP scores, or at the very least decide that taking upper level Psychology classes in the past is an acceptable pre-req... right??? RIGHT???
Well, from there it dawned on me that I am jumping from not being in school at all to taking all upper-division classes. Because that is all I have left. Is my head going to spin so fast that my brain flies out of my ears? Will I be over-challenged and fail everything? And who on earth is going to clean this house while I do all this working/studying?????
Sigh... another rambling of the only girl on earth who can work up a good panic attack before having anything to actually panic about...

Saturday, April 18, 2009

And finally, the wheels are in motion.

Once upon a time, there was a girl who was thoroughly convinced that she was going to live on a thoroughbred breeding farm. She was also going to be a psychologist, a lighting designer/stage manager and write children's books. The day would go something like this: wake up before dawn, feed the horses, groom them, get the vet work done, see patients, evening barn chores, go into town and work on a show, come home and write kids books for an hour or two, bedtime, repeat. That girl was an overachieving idiot. That girl was me... and still is. I am still the overachieving juggler of a million things, but my focus has narrowed. I mean, I started school 7 years ago with a double major of theatre design and psychology with a minor in animal science. Then dropped to psychology with an animal science minor. And then, my head exploded and I had to go work with horses to fix it, which expanded into an overall interest in veterinary medicine... and then, I was going to become an LVT and then get a master's in psychology and work with animals part time and be a full-time therapist and raise horses on the side, and oh, yeah! Wouldn't it be cool to have a family and kids someday too? And a therapy dog! Because I can juggle all that, no sweat!
Wait... I said my focus had narrowed, right? Yeah, apparently not as much as I thought it had. OK, basically, this is all a very long-winded way of pointing out that through it all, the desire to be a psychologist has been there. In the back of my mind, it has always come back to "one day" I'll go into therapy. Over the last few years, I have noticed this coming out more and more at work. My mental focus has shifted from just making sure that the animals are well-cared for and comfortable during their illness to making sure that the owners equally comfortable and re-assured of the care they have given their pets. And to making sure that euthanasia's are equally about the pet and the owner. I've started reading more and more about the human-animal bond and grief, and using what I've learned when clients ask the Big Questions, "How will I know when it's time?" "Is this happening because of something I did/didn't do for him?" "Do you think he hate me for putting him through this treatment/surgery/hospice care?" And slowly, very slowly, it has finally clicked in my mind that I need to do what I have obviously been meant to do all this time.
Monday evening, I got my acceptance letter for school. I plan to bang out the bachelor's in psychology that I abandoned within 12-18 months so that I can move onto my master's in professional mental health counseling. So, as of June, I will be a full-time student, a full-time vet tech, and a full-time cat/dog/horse mom, all while still somehow taking care of myself. The idiot overachiever wouldn't have it any other way....

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Thursday Thunks! Twilight, Emails, Being Nude And More Crazy Questions!

Yay for Thursday Thunks posting on Wednesday! I am currently sitting in a hospital room watching my littlest cuz sleep off her pain medicine (complications from a tonsillectomy have kept her here for three days and counting... she should be fine, but is miserable!)

1. Recently Berleen and I discovered the allure of the Twilight series. Have you ever been sucked in to the latest "thing"? (Like Harry Potter, the movie Titanic, social networking, etc. etc. etc.)
Well, I have always rebelled hard core against those things... and then give in! I saw Titanic multiple times, Harry Potter is the best thing ever and I owned enough slap bracelets to start my own slap bracelet store!

2. What software do you use for your email?
Hotmail and Gmail.

3. Are you comfortable being nude?
Yup! I used to shower with my clothes on, but it got too complicated so I had to learn to get naked for it. Still won't get naked outside of the bathroom though- I am seeking a support group to overcome that!

4. What is something you plan on doing this summer?
Driving to Louisville for the Derby!!! Driving to nearby cities whenever the Cubs come to town, so that I can root loudly and be obnoxious to the home teams fans. Swim/Hike/Nap in a hammock/Horseback ride/Camp, repeat! I love summer!

5. Do you have a favorite movie/book quote? If so, what is it?
I have a TON! Have a sample:
“Of course it is happening inside your head, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” Albus Dumbledore
“So what did I think? I'm holdin' out for somethin' better. I figure fuck it, while I'm at it why not just shoot my buddy, take his job, give it to his sworn enemy, hike up gas prices, bomb a village, club a baby seal, hit the hash pipe and join the National Guard? I could be elected president.” Will, “Good Will Hunting”

6. How many email addresses do you have?
Uuuuum, three? I think...

7. Is the sky falling?
I suspect that pieces are falling on my head, and that is why I get so many headaches!

8. Have you been to the Grand Canyon?
No, and visiting it will probably be one of the stereotypical American "things" that I will give up and have to go see one day!

9. When was the last time you mailed a hand written letter?
Probably like 15 years ago, when I hand wrote a fan letter to an author I loved. I embraced the whole typing on a computer thing quickly because of terrible spelling!


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