today the universe is sending me mixed signals


This is by all accounts a play-by-play of my day. Do not feel obligated to read further.

I began my morning with a lovely run.

I had started the run with my friendly neighborhood five and a half mile route in mind, but I felt very speedy and also very anxious, so I changed my mind midway and ran the four mile route instead. My goal is to get my average road pace down to under 8 minute miles. This morning my average pace was 8:15. So, not bad and I'll take it right? Because I'm not there yet but I'm so close.

When I arrived home from my run I went straight to the fridge for a tall glass of cold filtered water, which was when I noticed something strange. The fridge light was off. And then, well wait a minute, the water isn't coming out? A quick glance at the clock box on the microwave confirmed my suspicions: the power was out. The full weight of this dilemma only came to me piece by piece, as time went on and the power did not. Wait, we can't brew coffee?! And then, we can't turn on the news? My goodness the morning got boring real fast, while Dan and I and Beck sat in the living room, our hands feeling bare without a hot cup of joe to hold, or eyes feeling tired without the morning headlines flashing on the tv.

So I took Rockie for a nice walk. That was well and lovely until we got stuck behind the garbage truck for the last block. Have you walked behind a garbage truck for an entire block? They are dreadfully stinky.

I came home again to find that the power was still out, and the weight of this fact continued to hit me in segments. How will I unwrinkle my scrubs?! (I use the dryer. You too?) And Beck, I'm sorry man but it's cold milk for you this morning. (he still likes his milk warm.) I guess we'll have breakfast of untoasted bread or poptarts. I was suddenly grateful that I never do my hair. If I actually did my hair, why then I'd have just another problem to deal with! And anyway, the power going out always reminds us of the things we so easily take for granted. It's a very humbling experience, really.

The power did come back on, right as I had rocky mountain power dialed up on my phone and ready to press call. We had time for a quick cup of coffee, but no time for the news. I think that our slow and steady morning ritual of coffee and the news are much more of a weekday necessity for me than I had previously realized. (perhaps we will start purchasing the daily newspaper in print? Maybe this is what the Universe would like us to do? These are things that I must ask myself.) (Also, I've tried to convince the hubs to get us a subscription to the new york times for a while now but, apparently that is the most expensive newspaper subscription in the world.)

So we made it through the morning. We were off to school and daycare and work. It was all going per usual, when during my lunch break I headed downtown to snoop through somebody's attic. (the thrift store, not a strangers house.) I searched slowly through clothing racks, admiring some things, making faces at others. I tilted my head to the side a lot while studying the long pleated skirts, reminding myself that there is only a certain amount of "vintage" that I myself can pull off. I listened to a short elderly woman in the far corner of the store carrying on a loud conversation about the abomination of distressed denim. ("Why in my day, can you even imagine?! We might wear that to work in the barn, but that's it!") I smiled and thought about how glad I was to have avoided an awkward situation by not wearing my distressed denim today. I thumbed through the books and heavily debated buying a worn copy of Little Women before setting it back on the shelf. I searched the mens clothes for Dan and ended up finding a plaid shirt that Dan would be disgusted with but that would actually be perfect on me, so I snatched it right up.

I meandered to a flight of narrow stairs and climbed them, where at the top I headed straight for the shoes. Recently my friend found a lovely pair of vintage orange birkenstocks at a thrift store for six dollars, and ever since then it has been my life's mission to find some berks for six dollars! My eyes scanned the shelves filled with old, tattered shoes but nothing stuck out to me. There were clogs and sandals, some badly worn flip flops, no where close to berks, and really what was I expecting? I paced slowly and readied myself to pay for my mens plaid shirt and be on my way when, WAIT! I knelt down and there, on the bottom shelf, tucked far enough back that they could have easily been overlooked, I found them.

Not a pair of birkenstocks, sorry for the disapointment.


A pair of tan and brown suede vintage classic reeboks. Hardly worn. One might say "in mint condition"! And the bright yellow sticker clinging to the bottom of the shoes read: $3. That's less than a coffee at starbucks. I tried to contain my excitement for fear that the woman down the way would see what I was holding in my hands and run over to STEAL THEM FROM ME because they were suede VINTAGE CLASSIC REEBOKS and she MUST HAVE THEM! I pretended to not be very interested, slightly hiding them with my hands while I checked the tongue for the size.

Seven is almost my size. Pre-Beck I was a solid eight. Post-Beck my feet shrunk right down to an easy seven and a half. I sat down nonchalantly, mastering my strategy to seem completely uninterested, where I slipped off my shoe so I could try on the reebok. I held my breath and saw this going one of two ways: I was either Cinderella, or I was the ugly step-sister.

What will it be, Universe? I asked silently while still holding my breath.

I am Cinderella my friends. That glass reebok slipper fit like a dang glove. Fate is my Prince Charming.

The rest of the afternoon was a slice of pie because of that classic find. If I felt overwhelmed or discouraged or tired, I just pictured those reeboks on my feet and the spare change I used to purchase them, and I again remembered that life is actually really very good. I think I will use this strategy for as long as possible.

That should have made my day (it really did) but after work and picking up kids, the drive home was a strange one. You see, there are two things that people in my home town can not figure out: roundabouts and a three lane highway. We have approximately two of each of these items in my town. The three lane highway sections are the newest of the additions, and I struggle with the drivers who struggle with the rules when that third lane becomes a right turn only.

Listen folks, there is a dotted white line for two blocks, which means you can drive in this lane. You can drive in it for the entire two blocks, all the way to that right turn. If you are in the now "middle lane" of the three lanes and you decide last minute that you will be turning right, do not be bothered when I am next to you because I happened to think ahead of time before my turn.

Today I had the unfortunate experience of this happening with a very, very angry man. I was in the right of way, mind you, but he did not think so and he was adamant that I should be punished for my wrong doings. He laid on his horn and flipped me off, but could he be done there? No sir! He sat on my bumper, I mean his car was practically ON MY BUMPER, for the next five minutes. One hand pressed down on his horn the entire way, while the other hand sat out the window holding his middle finger straight up in the air. He was so much on my bumper that I could make out everything he said as he shouted obscenity after obscenity at me. I have two young children in the backseat and so my side of being able to stand up for myself was quite limited, but there at the end, as he did his u-turn, I did make sure to show him that I also have a middle finger.

I would like to find this man and give him the contact information for local anger management classes.

I would also like to find him and give him the contact information for drivers ed, so he could brush up on his right of ways and how to use a three lane highway.

(It should be noted that I am no expert on the roads, but my husband is and he told me the rules as soon as the three lanes were introduced in the valley. It should also be noted that my first time ever driving through a roundabout I drove into the oncoming traffic lane and looped twice before somehow making that stupid left turn. I then went home and asked Dan to teach me how to drive in a roundabout.)

And then, despite this incident, upon arriving home our evening has turned out to be quite lovely. I picked fresh beans from the garden and boiled them to eat as a side with the tilapia that I grilled. My dad and stepmom surprised us with a visit and a plate of divine homemade s'mores cookie bars. The boys took a long bath while I sat next to them and read my book, and Beck went to bed before 7:00. Jace rode bikes with all of the neighbor kids while I chatted with a neighbor mom who picked me a giant squash from her garden, which I plan on stuffing and baking for my belly here very soon.

I've had some curve balls today but I suppose a moody universe is better than a boring life, isn't it?

I know what you're thinking. But if finding vintage reeboks for three dollars at the thrift store is boring, I don't want to be anything else.

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