Archives for July 2012
If I ever write a book someday this would go in it. Thankfully, it would only be a page or two on a chapter about all the things my dad has taught me (which could probably fill a whole separate book). Today’s lesson: Spontaneous combustion is a real thing.
When we arrived at the house to surf this morning there was something odd about the way my dad was acting, like he had something to say, but I couldn’t quite put my finger on it. Then he casually said, “So, what do you guys know about spontaneous combustion?”. “Oh my gosh, what happened!?” was all I could say. Spontaneous combustion was something I thought of as a fake thing from horror movies where people caught on fire (weird, I know). He had prepared a presentation for us and I could tell he wanted to see this presentation through, so he didn’t reveal what had happened just yet.
I knew it was serious when he pulled out his i-pad and began educating us on the subject, though he didn’t seem upset. He just appeared ready to teach us a lesson. Despite my panicked questioning, my dad calmly continued reading the definition of spontaneous combustion off and explaining the types of materials that can cause it. After a few minutes that seemed like a day and a half, he led us to the garage where we saw it. The can sitting on the counter with charred towels.
After sanding and re-finishing the benches at my parent’s house the day before, we left the rags with linseed oil on them in a pile on top of the container. Overnight, the rags spontaneously caught fire and luckily burned out once they made contact with the metal can. My dad said if the can lid hadn’t been sealed so tightly, the fire could have caused the entire container to explode, likely burning down the garage and neighbor’s house in the process. Luckily, that wasn’t meant to be a part of our story.
What I’ve learned:
Spontaneous combustion is combustion without a spark or a flame. I thought the oily rags needed contact with fire or at least the sun to burst into flames, but this is not the case. Linseed oil (and other materials) in a confined space can oxidize, build heat, and ignite.
How to avoid spontaneous combustion:
Soak rags and brushes that have come in to contact with flammable materials, such as coals and oils, in water. Let them dry flat on a concrete surface so the combustable solvents can evaporate. Throw away the rags in a metal trashcan with a lid that seals. I’ve also heard you can put chemically soiled rags in a plastic bag filled with water and then throw them away. Whatever you do, don’t wad them up and leave them on top of a chemical container in your parents garage! Lesson learned.
this is the song we danced to at the wedding.
All the photos were taken by Carson Day.
Your wedding day goes by too quickly. People warned me of this, but I didn’t really think too long and hard about what to do with the information.
I remember how spiritual and full circle the ceremony was. It was an hour and a half total, but it honestly felt like an entire day (maybe for some of the guests too). I felt like everything was moving in slow motion. I saw every color in Scott’s eyes. Saw the moment when we first kissed, when I hoped I would see him everyday for the rest of my life. I remembered what it felt like to understand love as a child and felt it so strongly right then. All my grandparents related to me by blood had died by this day, Scott’s paternal grandfather too, but they were there. I knew they were there like I knew my dress was white and the church we were in was the place we were meant to be married. I could feel them around us.
When the ceremony was over, we exited the church, as you do. We made eye contact as we left with all the people who had helped to make us who we are. Time seemed to move so quickly then and many of my memories of conversations blur together. We took the group photos and drove to the reception at my parent’s house. When we entered, we did so to the song “Sweet Disposition” by Temper Trap. These are the things I remember. After greeting many of the guests we were pulled away to take our couple photos and time slowed down again. Every time I was with Scott on our wedding day, I felt we were creating memories that would stay in my mind for the rest of my life and during this memory making, time crawled in the best kind of way. We talked about baseball while the photographer did his job, which is funny because I don’t typically care about that sport much.
I hope I’m not making you gag.
There’s more to say about that day. The speeches were another moment when I felt if I died right after, I would have done so as a very complete and happy person. Some of the people we love most in our lives, Scott’s best friend Jason, our best man, my sisters, the maids of honor, and my dad all got up and expressed how they loved us. I always think about how important it is to tell the people in your lives what they mean to you, so if something happens to you, they knew what they meant to you. It felt almost like an out of body experience listening to the speeches. I felt again that strong spiritual presence. That overwhelming feeling of love. A deep kind of satisfaction.
There’s more, including our whole wedding party getting up on stage and rapping to “Empire State of Mind” by Jay-Z. I’ll get to that later, though. I’m not quite ready to write about the rest of the wedding yet. I honestly had a really hard time when it was over. The cops came to shut our party down at 11:30 p.m. because of noise complaints (lame neighbors) and I cried like my glass slippers had just turned back to servant shoes. It was kind of embarrassing, but also just that kind of day where 24 hours weren’t enough. At least if I can keep writing about it I get to return to this day. Thanks for coming along.
You bring me joy and teach me more about love with every passing year. Thanks for holding my hand forever.
|Electronic free fun|
|Creative creatures. This one is drawn by my friend Christine Brailsford|
|Bomb vegetarian options at local restaurants, like this tofu stir fry|
|Beach time with this guy|
|My quad fish (a four fin board) cuz it’s speedy|
|Summer! I’m really thankful for summer time!
Necklace by Marolsha by Maddy
|New Zealand camper van trip 2007|
Flexible. It’s something I’m not. Not physically, not mentally. I like to plan what is going to happen during the week and when something changes, even though I know I should be, I am not good at adapting. It’s something I need to work on because you can’t count on life being very predictable.
This is exactly why I think it is a good thing we are doing a very “fly by the seat of your pants” style trip this summer.
We have two weddings to go to. One in Iowa and one in Rhode Island. They are a week a part. To save money by avoiding buying tickets for the three or four different airports we would need to fly in and out of, we have decided to drive. Across the whole country. There and back. I honestly doubt we are saving much money, if any, but it’s all about the adventure at this point in our lives. Since Scott is off work for the summer (he’s a teacher) and my work is accommodating (the people I nanny for gave me the time off and I will blog from the road) there is no time like the present for us to embark on this cross country journey.
- I may lose my mind
- a) We will be away from the ocean for a large portion of this trip, longer than I’ve ever been away from it in my entire life.
- b) The “plan” will be flexible and unpredictable. Yikes!
- c) We will be seeing and staying with lots of friends and family. I am an introvert and nothing about that is changing for this trip. It’s something that doesn’t change ever. I like my alone time, my quiet time (which is typically my surf time). I am stoked to see family, don’t get me wrong, but I hope I still have some time to myself to collect my thoughts and “re-charge”.
- We will drive each other crazy
- We’ve actually done a camper van trip across New Zealand for three weeks and survived, so I’m less concerned about this bullet point. Scott’s driving does not scare or bother me, so this is a plus. He is not critical of my driving either.
- We will not have enough time to do everything we would like/the schedule will be too packed
- This is going to happen. I am “planning” on that. We have high hopes of accomplishing and seeing a lot, but have both accepted that it might not happen.
Well, at least there’s that. The acceptance of impending chaos. I can try to prepare and avoid the things I am worried about, but that’s about all I can plan on. Despite all of my concerns, I’m pretty freakin’ excited to add this experience to my life. My greatest hope is that we will not only come home with great stories, but will return more well rounded, stronger individually and as a couple. Either way, I will document what happens on this little blog of mine.
-San Diego, California to Salt Lake City, Utah
-Salt Lake City to Yellowstone, Wyoming
-Yellowstone to Keystone, South Dakota to see Mt. Rushmore
-South Dakota to Iowa for wedding #1
-Iowa to Chicago, Illinois to visit friends
-Chicago to Pennsylvania to visit family
-Pennsylvania to Rhode Island for wedding #2
-Rhode Island to New York, New York to visit my sister Danielle
-New York to North Carolina to visit and surf with our friend Dave
-North Carolina to Georgia or Alabama
-Georgia to New Orleans, Louisiana
-New Orleans to somewhere in Texas
-Texas to Carlsbad Caverns, New Mexico
-New Mexico to San Diego
The day after we get back Scott and I leave for bachelor and bachelorette parties, respectively. Mine is in Vegas, his is in Tahoe. The following Tuesday Scott returns to School.
If this trip doesn’t teach me to be more flexible, I don’t know what will.
-Any good recommendations for this journey are very much appreciated.
This weekend. Ahhh. That’s what I want to say about it because it was very relaxing, which is exactly what I needed after last week. Thank you for all of your heartfelt comments about the death of my great aunt. They were like little hugs, and I truly appreciated them.
Sometimes I feel like an outright beach bum, being out in the ocean so often, but I get stressed too, which is probably my own doing, but nevertheless, it happens. I wig out and need quiet time. This is usually a result of too many social gatherings in a row or something emotionally trying taking place. Lately there’s been both. When such events occur, I act like a mouse and retreat to my little den where my comfort items live. Things like my family, blanket and journal (ok my stuffed animals too). Or, I play cards, drink wine, and surf with my husband in small waves when no one else is out. This is exactly what I got to do this weekend while social events went on without us.
One of the other reasons I have been stressed? Ok, I will tell you, since you sound so curious.
We have a big trip coming up. One that pushes me slightly outside of my comfort zone. I will tell you more about that later.
Until then, here’s is another surf video. This one is shorter and shot by my dad, while Scott and I were surfing at sunset on Friday. Don’t miss the high five at the beginning. It’s our best trick. ha.
I have so many stories from that island. Like going to Camp Fox with my dad for Indian Princesses when I was six. It was my first Catalina experience. I entered a logo design contest for the camp t-shirt. I drew a big smiling fox with huge round eyes, my dad said he was sure was going to be the winner. I knew he was proud of me for drawing that fox too, even though it didn’t win. It was the way he held it away from his face with two hands and examined it with his happy eyes.
Then there was the first time we took our boat out. Since I was the oldest child at the ripe old age of nine I was, therefore, assigned to help my mom get the boat on the mooring ball (essentially a floating boat parking spot). My sisters Danielle and Maddie, who were six and four at the time, were too young to help. It was up to my mom and me to stand up on the bow and grab a bobbing stick that was connected to the rope we would use to tie the boat up. I remember pulling up the soggy yellow rope and then having no clue what to do with it. While my dad rushed down from the cockpit to assist his rookie crew, we nearly hit two other boats that were moored nearby. It was the first time I knew the meaning of “all hands on deck!”.
After that, I studied how other boaters accomplished this task without error and committed myself to becoming a boat girl. Now, when I take that algae covered rope in my hands I feel empowered. I feel I can help my dad achieve something he loves – being on his boat in Catalina making memories.
And we made many new memories on this trip. Legends, a San Diego based stand up paddle company, gave me two boards to take with us, making a total of four boards so we could all paddle together. We tried to capture the moment using the camera timer, which really didn’t give us enough time, hence this picture of my dad almost falling over in the foreground.
I’m supposed to be writing about Catalina. We went there for my dad’s birthday this weekend. It was beautiful and we got to celebrate my dad, who I happen to think is one of the best people who has ever lived, ever. We did activities we haven’t done since I had braces and short hair (it wasn’t a good look), things Scott had never done in Catalina like frisbee golf, hiking and dancing around the Isthmus, a northern harbor we don’t visit as often. But I am too distracted to write about all of that right now because I’m too busy feeling sorry for myself and for my friend.
You see, this friend, Basia, was supposed to come to stay with us tomorrow until Friday, but she had to cancel because of work. I feel worse for Basia than I do for myself, though. Not just because I know she wanted to come down to visit me, but because I know she needed a break from her job.
This day has been tricky. I’m also pretty annoyed at Scott for something silly. Everything is going really well in my life and I try to never even think about complaining, I don’t feel I have the right to, but I wanted to write about this because sometimes it’s nice to know other people out there have bad days too. They do exist at the beach, despite popular misconceptions.
At least the Olympic trials are on. I love the Olympics. And Scott cleaned the windows today. They look nice (even though toxic fumes are currently taking over the house).
I was just so looking forward to having a few days with a dear friend I wish I would see every day. You know one of the things I was most excited about doing with Basia? It was something really simple. I wanted to buy coconuts from our local market, show her how to chop them open with our firewood axe and drink them in the backyard with striped straws I was going to buy tomorrow.
That’s the end of my pity party. On the positive side, bad days make me feel really alive.
I’ll be back soon with the real story from Catalina.