Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Ideas pending... Blubber blabber for now!

I have a few ideas in the works for future blogs, but I lack the time and creative energy to pump 'em out tonight. So here's some random thoughts in no particular order. Gonna crank 'em out, then hit the hay. (What's with "'em out?" Anyway...)

Had a fabulous girls night tonight. Simple, laid back, easy. Three reasons why I absolutely adore my Denver friends.

I'm coffee "drunk" right now.

Mark and I are traveling to Park City, Utah, for a wedding this weekend. I've never met the groom and bride, but from what Mark explains, they're good people. Never been to Utah either. Gonna hike for a few days after the wedding. Perhaps I'll glean some super cool blog stories! (What's with "gonna?" In my's the caffeine buzz...)

I miss my good friend Pamela. Wish she would clear her cell phone voicemail so I could actually leave a message. I wonder how things are going in her life these days...

Mark is my savior and best friend. It's amazing how unconditionally he loves me. He deserves an award.

I did a super cool think at work that I am very proud of. Lately, I've been doing many things at work that I'm proud of. Perhaps I've FINALLY found the career for me! Perhaps...

It's driving me crazy how much Tucker is regressing in his training. I NEED to call Steve from Bark Busters! NEED TO! Ah, the joys of dog owning....

I wore a cowboy hat tonight for no reason. Well, bad hair day, yes, but I have many other hats to choose from, and I chose the cowboy hat. The rain dripped right through it... Not a wise choice.

I can't wait to hike with Jill. I think we will balance each other out in regard to motivation. I am confident that I can get her to the summit...not 20 feet below it. Jill, that's my promise to you!

I miss Michelle. We've been playing phone tag for weeks now. Sorry girlfriend...

My other friend Michelle got engaged! And to quote her, "and I'm not even pregnant!" HA! I really hope they'll move to Denver. Wish there were some way to talk her into it... She's a cool chick.

I also wish Marilyn would move to Denver. I owe her a call too. Crap! I hate the phone! Not a good thing for someone who recently moved away from home...

Wish my family was closer. What the heck is big bro Jay up to? It's been too long...

How long does it take for cactus roots to grow? I have no idea. Hope mine make it and don't crap out on me...

Wish I had money for flowers to plant. I have a ton of ideas.

Wish I had money.

I hope I can get rid of the stupid spider mites on the tropical Home Depot tree! Spider mites are awful. I would not wish them on any tree or houseplant. Watch out, stupid mites, here comes the second round of hose blasting! TAKE THAT, EXPENSIVE DECORATIVE INDOOR OFFICE TREE KILLERS! HA!

Mark made an awesome dining room table. I always wanted a long wooden table so I could spread out my "projects." I can picture me working with my kids on their homework on this table someday. Except for math. Mark will do that. He WILL do that!

I wish trigger points never existed. Right now, they are plauging (sp?) me. Get out of my neck muscles, stupid lactic acid knots!

Am I nuts?

Maybe a little.

I love to sing to Paulo Nutini. Mark can attest to that. And Tucker too, if he had the capability to "attest."

We had pasta today at work for the kids, and it's called "cavatini." One of my kids said, "Miss Chwissy, please pass the cappuccino." Love it. She drove me absolutely up the wall ALL DAY LONG today, but once she said that, I just had to squeeze her cheeks and give her a big hug.

I really love my co-teacher, Ann. I got incredibly lucky when I was paired up with her. I hope she feels the same way. She's a very loving lady, and sarcastic just the same. A combination that I just ADORE!

Tomorrow is my Friday, although it's Thursday. And that is so freaking cool.

Nighty night! Perhaps I'll blog tomorrow, perhaps not. Depends on if I get all packed on time. Which I probably won't.

Till then!

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Ruby “Hood”

“Oh my God, I didn’t tell anyone where I was going!” I thought to myself. More than once during my excursion…

It’s a pretty important rule for runners and hikers and I blew it off.

Aside from the worn down cracked pavement and cement barriers blocking the winding roads, Ruby Hill Park seemed pretty nice. Lots of freshly mowed green fields, a baseball diamond and updated playground. There was even a monstrous grass-covered hill – the exact feature that lured me there for my 45 minute run (with hills….so said my marathon training schedule.)

Such a great view from atop Ruby Hill! You can see the whole city. But still, not more than a handful of people in sight? How could this be? The outdoor pool area seemed to be closed, and at 5:00 p.m. on a Wednesday, there were no children playing in the playground. There was only a teenage couple sitting on top of the slide, glaring at me, as if they were wondering why I thought it would be such a good idea to choose that particular place to spend an entire 45 minutes, by myself.

I slowly began to realize that Ruby Hill Park was no Wash Park (my neighborhood meat market and haven for many a dog and jogger). In fact, it was a pretty shady park, and I don’t mean “shelter from the sun.”

My opinion of the park and the surrounding area hadn’t solidified until my dog Tucker and I decided to venture out of the park and run along the side of a few streets and enter the park again at the opposite entrance. I won’t go into detail, but I actually heard a shoeless little boy who was playing in his fenced-in front yard with his brother say, “Wow, look! A DOG! He’s RUNNING!” Apparently dogs don’t leave their yards too often in that neighborhood…and for good reason!

I was grateful for the major incline as I made my way up the road so I could get some hill work in, but more importantly, I was more grateful that many cars were passing us and we weren’t prancing through the park, mostly alone, with no cell phone. What was I thinking? WHY didn’t I do a bit more research before I hopped into the car with the dog to run 5 miles up and down hills in a strange neighborhood?

At one point during our run, I tripped over an ancient speed bump and nearly face planted (The yellow paint was almost completely worn off. That’s my lame excuse for being so clumsy!) I think I must have let out a loud “AAAAAAAAAAAAHHH!” (I’m good at that…) but somehow I was able to catch myself pre-road rash. I just kept running, happy to be in one piece. Tucker immediately licked my hand that was holding his leash – I think he knew that I was glad not to have to slowly limp back to the car….

I realize that it’s possible that I am overreacting, and making a mountain out of a molehill for the sake of a good story. But I’m from Chicago, where remarkably enough, there are major distinct boundaries between one trendy neighborhood and another. Basically, just try not to go west of Western. It’s pretty easy to remember… And obviously I haven’t learned the difference between an okey dokey neighborhood and a somewhat shady spot here in Denver yet, and I do anticipate a few more situations like this though, before I really learn my lesson. I know myself all too well!

But for what it’s worth, today I purchased a running water bottle with a nylon zippered holder for my keys and identification. I never really should have been running without identification anyway…

And I already have plans to run on Tuesdays with my friend Natasha at Red Rocks Amphitheater. Great view of the city. Trendy area. Awesome big red rocks. But most importantly, a safer area for a hill workout!

So if you don’t hear from my after next Tuesday, please call a representative from Red Rocks. There. I told someone. I’m making progress already!

Monday, May 14, 2007

Pink Straps, Yellow Specs and the Coffee Shop


“Yes, pink,” he said strongly, somewhat annoyed. “I really don’t care if they’re pink – they do the job.”

I looked up nonchalantly from Dr. Seuss’s Yurtle the Turtle and spotted the man who had been sitting at the table next to me with his wife. He was bent over on the sidewalk in front of the coffee shop, adjusting his bright pink reflective Velcro bicycle pant strap thingamajigs.

He was about sixty-years-old and had a kind face and neatly combed brown hair. He was wearing a nice collared shirt with jeans – an appropriately casual outfit for a Sunday morning coffee and newspaper outing.

The bicycling man and his wife had given me their table in the sun, and they were very sweet about it. They even asked me about my Dr. Seuss book, and I told them that I was a preschool teacher, researching for a lesson.

“They’re still pink,” said a long gray curly-haired, weathered looking man with yellow tinted hippy glasses. He was about the same age as Mr. Pink Straps, and he, also, was sitting at a table on the sidewalk with his wife. I couldn’t help but notice him when I first arrived at the coffee shop, because the hipster and his upturned nosed wife cut in front of me in line before I was able to give the girl my coffee order.

Not a laugh, chuckle or even a smile followed his judgment. The comment was piercing and there seemed to be, from what I overheard, no particular reason why he would care about the color of the other man’s protective cycling safety device.

“Oh Dear, he was just making an observation,” whispered Pinky’s wife with a smile as she mounted her bicycle that had been chained to the fence behind me. She, however, gave a subtle giggle, and I could sense that she thought the banter between the two men was slightly comedic.

As Pink Straps mounted his bicycle and began to slowly follow his wife down the street, I wondered to myself how long their conversation would last; if they just let it go, or further analyzed the, what appeared to be, rude comment.

I peered over at Yellow Specs and he scowled, rolled his eyes and continued reading his newspaper. I then couldn’t help but try to analyze the situation myself…

I’ve been to that coffee shop many times during the week, and the clientele ranges from students on their laptops, clicking away at their projects, to young hippies with their dreadlocks reading paperbacks on the velour couches. I’ve seen nothing but warm smiling faces, and have actually had a few nice conversations with strangers at tables next to me.

Sunday was different. It seemed that the demographic had changed – that the overflow from a “certain neighborhood” (I’ll rename it “Apple River”) had chosen to come to my neighborhood coffee shop.

And as bad as I feel about stereotyping in this instance, I wasn’t too happy with the results of the change.

Pleasant man and wife take bike ride to coffee shop on sunny Mother’s Day morning. Hoity toity judgmental couple visit same coffee shop, cut in front of me in line and make snide comment to said pleasant man. Necessary? You be the judge.

I hope I run into Yellow Specs again next Sunday because I will be wearing one flip flop on one foot and one cowboy boot on the other. Jeans under a fancy dress and snowboarding goggles on my head.

Because that, my friends, will be snide comment worthy.

Friday, May 11, 2007

The Anti-Survey

Hello, readers! (Wow, that's hillarious. Perhaps I should say "reader.")
I'm here to proclaim, loud and clear, that I HATE surveys. Despise them. But, for some strange reason, I'm simply addicted to reading other people's surveys to see what they have to say. But God forbid, I will never do them myself. See, because, well, hmmmm...I just, well, I just...

I just HATE them.

Anyway, thought I'd share some random, useless shhtuff about me in no particular order. But it is very important to remember that this is, in no shape or form, a survey.

(Ha ha ha...sarcasm is cool!) :-)

Here goes:

I'm 28 and I've never owned my own car. I drive a car now here in Denver, but it belongs to my fiance.

I like big dogs. BIG dogs. Mine is 85 pounds and I don't think he's big enough. I wish I could own a Great Dane.

I ran track in college. 400 meters. I miss it terribly (or do I just miss the track body? Tough one...)

Alliteration is awesome. It's almost, absolutely one of my favorite things. Appropriately so! Creating cool, classy comments calls for a balance of crazy coherence.

I like to believe that I'm a good writer. But honestly, sometimes it just doesn't flow and I end up with crap (see my alliteration example above).

I've dated a lot of guys. Too many in my opinion.

I'm finally comfortable in my own skin.

I waste a lot of time. There, I said it. I waste a lot of time. Procrastinator is my middle name. I'm Christine Procrasinator Scafide.

Actually, I'm Christine Jo Scafide.

Soon to be Christine Jo Richter.

That's the first time I've ever typed that.

I can guarantee that the ONLY people that will call me Christine Richter will be people who work in the doctor's offices that I will visit. And perhaps a telemarketer or two. My brothers, dad and Mark's step-dad will still call me "Chris." It will ONLY be ok for them.

My grandmother was Josephine. Christine Josephine Scafide was too silly. Hence, Jo. Everytime I drive on Josephine street in Denver I think of her.

I never got the best grades in school. Sometimes honor roll, sometimes not. Sometimes A's, sometimes D's. A few F's, due to, you guessed it, procrastination. I was never good at taking tests, but I would write my 20 page papers the night before they were due and get at least a B.

Math scares me more than life itself.

I want to get my Master's Degree in Education so badly!

But I'm so afraid of the math. I'd classify myself as "remedial" when it comes to math.

I love reading and English and stuff that has to do with the subject of English but I hate grammar. I'm not the best when it comes to grammar. It reminds me of math. Too many rules. I like to make up my own rules.

I have to dye my hair because it is getting so gray.

Jobs titles I've held: athletic tranier, public relations intern, restaurant hostess (with the mo...oh wait, I won't, I'll spare you!), freelance public relations account coordinator, executive assistant to CEO and president of PR agency, assistant PR account executive, PR account executive, special events and alumni relations coordinator, admissions and parent community coordinator, support staff supervisor, freelance public relations associate, cocktail server, preschool teacher.

I was fired from a job three years ago. By a Catholic nun. For a position at my high school alma matter. That was possibly one of the worst days of my life.

I was raised Catholic. Went to Catholic school from kindergarten through college. I can't say I care too much about Catholocism all that much anymore (see above statement involoving nun).

In regard to life, I'm finally starting to "get it" now. I finally feel like I have more confidence than I know what to do with. I think I'm making up for lost time. I'm scared that I'm going to loose the newfound confidence...

I used to believe that I could never do anything on my own. And I was scared to try.

I once lived in a 200 square foot studio apartment in Chicago by myself for 11 months. I didn't even have a bed.

I'm really worried that my IT band injury is going to come knocking on my door again and I'm not going to be able to complete my marathon training.

I have trouble realizing who my true friends are. I always have. I think I might be starting to figure it out, but I constantly get burned.

I just bought a wedding dress. Nope, I mean, a dress that I'm going to wear for my wedding. I got it in the junior's prom section at Macy's for $175.

I wish I was a better singer.

I wish I never stopped playing the piano.

I wish I were cool enough in high school to be a cheerleader or dancer. I always wished that. Instead I was the only girl running with the boy's track and cross country teams because I was fast enough.

I wish I had boobs.

I wish there wasn't so much drama back home in Chicago.

I miss Lake Michigan.

I miss working at the Burwood Tap, drinking for free and getting tipsy during my shifts.

I miss my friend Michelle's bar, Rhythm. I felt so proud of her everytime I walked through the doors.

I miss the relationship that I had with my brothers when we were younger.

I miss my brothers.

I miss Sunday pasta dinner at Grandma's. Sometimes when I'm outside, I smell her meatballs in the air...

I have a dream every night, and I remember them each morning.

I'm going to go to bed now and try to dream of all the things that I miss now that they're fresh in my mind...

Thanks for reading (hopefully!)
Christine Jo Procrasinator Scafide Richter

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

My Savvy Friend Jill

Not to be confused with My Happy Friend Jess, My Savvy Friend Jill volunteered to write a little bitty 'bout me on her blog (in order for me to gain some interesting blogging-type readers, since I have, like, 4, and they're all my good friends) so I thought it would only be polite of me to do a little ditty about her in exchange.

Well, she's My Savvy Friend Jill. And for many reasons. But in this specific instance, she's introducing me to the exhilerating world that is, indeed, blogging -- one in which she is not only most certainly famiiar with, but in my opinion, very skilled.
So now, if I claimed to be at all blogger-savvy (which I don't) I would have inserted a colored underlined linky-thingy in the paragraph above for Jill's name, so you could simply click on it and POOF! be magically transported to Single Mom in the City, her neato schmoomeeto (sound it out....yep...SCHHHH MOOOOO MEEET OOOOO), content rich blog.
(I hope to schmoomeeto you soon as well, if I haven't already!) Yeah yeah...what can I say, I'm a preschool teacher! I have given into the ridiculous habit of making up words.

Anyway, she's pretty, she's smart, she's cool, and she's My Savvy Friend Jill.
And here she is with me (Don't kill me's the only pic that I have of just the 2 of us! Just so ya'll know...we're a little tipsy and sweaty, respectively):

So, many thanks to My Savvy Friend Jill! And i you're reading this and you decide to become my new blogging friend, one day I may write a super duper special blog about you.

And I'll promise never to use the word schmoomeeto to describe you.

Sunday, May 6, 2007

Dear Spencer...

Dear Spencer Michael Sturm,

Welcome to the wonderful world! I see that life is treating you well so far. How can you complain with such a beautiful head of hair?

Your mommy is my oldest friend. I bet you didn't know that! Yep, I've known her for 11 years. Well, for the first year of our friendship, before I really got to know her, I didn't like her all that much considering she was a tall, skinny, smart pretty blonde (and in Saint Joseph's College world, that meant COMPETITION!) Anyway, she turned out to be a pretty cool chick, so we've been friends ever since.

Well, I won't go into detail (because it's not for little ears!) but I was there when your mommy and daddy met. Ah...the single days... Some day you might find out about their first official date. He was a doozie!!!!!
Oh yeah, back to you...

I hope you'll be as smart as her one day...and responsible...and handy. Yep, I said handy. She should seriously have her own show on HGTV! And I hope you'll be a fast runner or a QB for the Green Bay Packers (that one's for you, Steve!) But most of all, I wish for you a beautiful life, filled with love, adventure and happiness. (Let me know if I can help with the adventure part...there's MOUNTAINS where I live! Yippey! Uncle Mark would love to show you how to snowboard and mountain bike.)

Oh! Here we are, little one! (Less than a year before you arrived...) Look at your crazy daddy in the background! He sure is silly...
Well Spencer, I hope you enjoy your new life. I hope Wisconsin treats you well. I hope Reggie doesn't jump all over you (don't worry, it's just because he loves you...) and I hope you stay healthy and happy!
I hope to meet you soon, baby boy! I'm a really cool lady, you'll see :-)
Much love to you, mommy and daddy,
Your new Auntie Chrissy (well, not really, but kind of...)

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Let it go, woman...just let it go!!!


As you may have noticed, I've been trying to change the layout of the top of my blog page. Completely characteristic of quirky ole me, I wasn't satisfied with one pic, the title of my Blog and description of my blog. Oh no man, I had to get complicated...

So I scoured the internet to find the perfect "tumbling leaf" pic, and I think I did a pretty good job with the one I decided on. And I wanted a few goofy pics, a few serious pics, and I had to sneak Mark somewhere in there as well. But in case you don't completely know me yet, perhaps I should point out that I need to have a balance of pics of me with curly hair and straight hair. Yep, it gets worse... (oh, and the only reason why I don't have a pic of my friends up there too is because I had to force myself to just MOVE ON!)

So I instill the computer genius of Mark (yes indeedy...GENIUS!) and he bing bang boomed me out a workable jpeg to slap onto the top of the blog so we could get back down to business, which was, in fact, searching for our WEDDING SITE!!!!! Hmmm...order of importance????? Double D'oh!

So I use the electronic form that Blogger gives you to insert your whosamawhatsit's and, to my dismay, the length of the jpeg was off (too short), and to me it just looked funny. It was definitely workable, but not up to my standards, and I've been stressing about it all day...

SEE..the thing with me is, I have these notions that things need to be a certain way, when basically, most of the time, they're unattainable and I just end up mad at myself in the long run anyway. I'm not a graphic designer, am I? AM I? But boy, would it be nice... (And it really realistic for me to do a load of laundry the minute the bin fills up??? REALLY???)

So I take it a step further, because I just can't let it go. I revert back to the PowerPoint file where I first created the silly picture thingy and try to come up with something that will fill up the empty space on the right side of the jpeg so hopefully it will fit perfectly on the top of my blog page. So I end up writing some stupid poem (which, mark my words, will probably be changed here in the next few weeks because I'm not completely happy with it yet...) and resave it, and insert it at the top of my blog page yet again.

The final outcome? Blurry text. A right side of the jpeg that instead of being too short, is too stinking long. And colors that simply don't match the overarching theme of my blog.

Mark my words, at some point, the top of my blog will be fixed (or even more messed up...we'll see!) Until then, I need to pry myself away from my computer and get my run in.

But guess what I'll be thinking about on my run? Uh huh. Triple D'oh...

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