I'd Rather Be...

I'd rather be here.  No more work, no more stress, no more bills, no more annoying people. I'm pretty sure God invented tropical islands for this very reason. 

Just me, the sun, and the quiet.
shhhh.  I'm relaxing.


Bridal Shower

My friend Melissa is getting married in 2 weeks.  I am so excited for her and her fiance Kip.  They are getting married on the beach at sunset and its going to be a great reunion with all of my college friends.  This weekend was her bridal shower and I was able to drive up to Tampa early Saturday morning.  It was nice to meet all of her laboratory friends (she is getting her PhD, studying cancer) and listen to her wedding plans.  Melissa and I were roommates in college and its been so fun to see where life has taken her and surprisingly taken us both to the weird state of Florida.

Mel and I


Happy Birthday!

Today is my Daddy's Birthday!  I know everyone thinks their dad is the best, but really my dad is the best-est (really, he is!)  He is always there for me, no matter what stupid mistakes I make along the way.  He is wise, driven, loving, and the person I always look to for advice.  

To 60 wonderful  years!
Happy Birthday!


Hello God.



My sunflowers are dead.  I tried so hard to keep them alive.  What did I expect though? I couldn't even bring myself to post a picture of the crumpled brown, limp leaves.  My living room will not be the backdrop to large, beautiful, yellow flowers after all.  The silk plant section at Michaels is looking pretty good right about now.


Marco! Polo!

On Sunday we ventured up to the ritzy West Palm Beach to watch our first Polo Match.  A few people at work had some free tickets so we decided to tag along and mingle with the wealthy.  It was fun to spend the afternoon outside, people watching and horse watching.  Needless to say there were quite a few women with their 50 carat diamonds sparkling in the sun and lots of very young women with very old men.  The grounds were emaculate and green against the perfect blue sky.  I'm not sure how well we fit in, sitting in the "general seating" with our coronas, but at least I can say I've watched a Polo Match!

Bobby and I

 Catching some shade


Valentine's Day

Yesterday evening we spent the night listening to the most amazing singer: Andrea Bocelli.  It was magical.  He sang all of my favorites and even though we were in the nose bleed section, it sounded like he was singing right next to me.  It was so lovely. A perfect way to spend the evening.


Raisins once were happy grapes

I am an anxious worrier.  Justified worries, unjustified worries, you name it I worry about it and then feel anxious about it.  At times it inhibits me from doing what I need to do, is the cause of so many arguments, and sometimes makes me wish I lived in a secret cave, alone.

Coincidentally (or maybe not) the sermon on Sunday was all about worrying.  I listened intently, took feverish notes on scripture and stories.  When I looked down at my notes I realized one main things: I worry too much.   

With the closing prayer, Pastor Steve told us to put our hands on our laps, linking our fingers together.  He then told us to squeeze our hands together as hard as we could.  As we continued to pray, he told us to release the tension, to release all our worries to God.  Its a pretty good feeling when that tension is let go and your hands can relax.  Trust is sometimes a hard thing to do.  I'm going to work on that.

"worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrows but empties today of its strength"


Hello Mrs. Ostrich

Friday we went to a site visit of where we are going to hold our field school this summer.  I had such a good time and I got to break in my snake boots.  Extreme definition of casual Friday.  My job was to find a perfect spot for the field lab.  We had to make sure it was on high enough ground because the field school starts at the beginning of the rainy season.  It was pretty unreal being out in the swamp.  I live in two separate worlds.  Modern Suburbia and Prehistoric suburbia.  I think its going to be a great field school, as long as I don't get bitten by a rattle snake.  

 Core Field School Staff: Off to find the site!

 Discussing logistics with Jake

 Lemon Tree!

On our way back to the swamp buggy (our mode of transportation) we all stopped dead in our tracks.  A giant female ostrich was investigating the buggy.  She was almost 8 feet tall and her legs were ginormous.  They are known to be very aggressive and like to kick.  Jake, who runs Billie Swamp, tried scaring it away by throwing some sticks at it (although he did have his rifle just in case).  She wandered away for about 2 seconds and then she decided she wasn't ready to leave.  We all quickly climbed back up onto the buggy (my heart pounding), and watched as she started investigating us.  Not a typical Friday.

 She seemed annoyed that we were in her spot.


Home Depot

I am trying to increase my gardening skills, since my little sunflowers have been growing big and haven't not died yet.  Today my friend gave me a giant fern.  It was left over from our exhibit booth at the South Florida Fair.  She was able to take home all of the extras and had one to spare!  It was a little sad looking and a little brown.  Bobby and I went off to Home Depot today to try and find it a nice new pot.  We found one and a few other treasures.

I also ran to Michaels to look around and found a few more treasures!  I did a mini makeover of the family room today.  Its looking a lot more grown-up and a little bit more like summer if I do say so myself!


If you look at the reflection in the t.v. I am sorry for the mess.  Bobby is building a new computer in the living room.


 I added my little sunflowers to these new ones.  I thought they needed some friends.

 A new little bird: 2 dollars

 New Fern!



Today I received an e-mail at 6:00 am saying that I-75 was closed due to fog.  Must be pretty bad if they close the main highway between here and Naples.  My carpool decided it would be faster just to wait it out with everyone else on the highway instead of driving some crazy back country road and driving into an alligator infested canal.

As we drove closer to I-75, traffic started backing up and we could see the flashing lights of the police helping to direct traffic off the exits.  Hundreds of cars lined the frontage roads and the exit ramps were at a crawl.   As we slowly drove up to the row of cops, my co-worker, who was driving, rolled down his window to see what the situation was.  I told him that we should just exit like everyone else.  He is is big guy from Brooklyn, and was wearing dark sunglasses and his official white collared work shirt with the tribe's logo.  The window barely made it all the way down when to our amazement the cop waved us on towards the highway. Not a single word was said on our end and we all just nodded to the cop, pretending that we were very important and obviously on official business. 

We all started laughing so hard.  We couldn't believe that the cops just let us onto the highway, leaving behind hundreds of stranded motorists waiting for the fog to lift.

Now if you'll excuse me, I am very important and have very important things to do!



Today as I was busily making copies, taking phone calls and typing away at e-mails to professors, scientists, and co-workers, I realized how comfortable I finally am at my job.  I remember my first weeks, not sure what in the world I was doing there and not knowing where anything was. I wondered when I would remember where the 3-hole punch was and how to use the fax machine.  When it would all feel normal.

Today it did.  I like that.