Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Looking for...Me

I started this year with a goal...to find myself. I felt a little like Julia Roberts in the runaway bride...not really even knowing how I liked my eggs cooked. Which really isn't true because I like them over medium with bacon. But you get the point. I was feeling lost having just come out of another (failed) long term relationship. 

You see I have this really bad habit of going from one relationship to another. In fact I've spent the better part of the past 15 years in back to back relationships. Each time I come tearing out of one, and its usually ugly, there would be some other poor soul to take their place. My therapist would call it co-dependancy.  I simply call it fear. Fear of being alone. So instead of taking time to heal and reflect on what went wrong I would simply find someone new to latch onto like a barnacle in the hopes they would find me good enough, smart enough, pretty enough, thin enough, perfect enough, etc...to be worthy of keeping around.

I got real good at being the girl you wanted me to be. I became friends with your friends and was fun to be around. I took on your hobbies and likes. You like punk rock? I like punk rock! You want to go to the river? I can do the river! I became the master chameleon. In essence, I was the perfect girlfriend, always up for fun and always had a smile on my face.

However, there is a flip side of my personality. I have a horrible fear of commitment and can't stand normalcy. So while part of me longed for someone to love me the other part of me was constantly looking outward for the next best thing horribly afraid I would miss the "something better" that would come along because I was in a relationship.

It didn't make things any easier that I chose to pursue a career that moved me about the country. In fact it made it much easier for me to just pick up and take off with things got too serious. Sure the relationship would hang on for a few months when I was in my new town but then I would find someone new who would give me the attention I craved and I'd be off to the races. It was a vicious cycle that ruined numerous relationships and caused irreparable emotional damage to my exes. I wasn't a very nice person and I'm not proud of my behavior.

But this year, having decided it was time for a change, I made up my mind that at 32 years old I was going to learn just who the hell I am and what the hell I like. I've spent so much time catering to my significant others that it seems like I don't even know who I am anymore. So I made a list - not a bucket list - because I don't plan on kicking off anytime soon, but a list of what I want to do, for myself this year besides spend time with my cat George. 
Its now 6 months in and here's where I'm at:

1) No relationships - dating is ok but no commitments for 1 year (Leo and I have been dating since January and he's been very understanding about my process and my goal of having a year of self discovery. He's fun, has two fantastic kids, a great dancer and rides a harley.
2) Visit my friend Kaushal in Atlanta - she's a freelance anchor for CNN  (I made a trip out to Atlanta in Feb)
3) Visit my Grandma & Grandpa Tejeda in Nebraska (I just spent memorial weekend with them. See previous blog: What I learned on my trip to Nebraska

4) Have Fun (Diana and I consistently hit up the Bonham Exchange for  nights of dancing. We've even managed to drag some of our other friends, like my roommate Jeanie, out with us.)
 (I've been to lots of Spurs games and even had my picture taken with the coyote.)
5) Laugh More (These days...I laugh a lot)

6) Buy a house (This is something I have dreamed about for as long as I can remember. Now I am well on my way to buying a house and should be a homeowner by the end of the year)

7) Travel (I have just applied for my passport and hopefully will do some traveling later this year. I also went fishing a few months back in Corpus where I caught a HUGE redfish)
8) Visit my family in California more (I have already made one trip back home. Granted it was for my grandmothers funeral but I did get to spend Easter with my family and it was a wonderful experience overall.
9) Get a promotion/raise at work (working on that ;)

10) Freelance On Air Work (I have taken some print pictures and completed one audition for some on air work) 

11) Start a blog (nuff said)

12) Be of service to my community (I am very active in my community but I'm still looking for a board or committee to serve on)

With half the year gone I feel like I've come so far but I still have so much farther to go. I've stayed up late, discovered new tv shows, drank lots of coffee, met new twitter friends, started Zumbaing, gotten closer to my close girlfriends than I ever thought I could have imagined (thank you Diana for everything) and each day I'm so grateful for what the next may bring. This year of reinvention, of discovery, of fun was so needed so deep down in my soul. 

For so long I felt so empty and felt like I was just going through the motions. This year I have felt more alive than I ever have. I have danced till my feet hurt. I have laughed till my smile felt like it would crack my face in half and I know that God has so many more blessings in store for me. Thank you all for being part of my life. ~n

The Bed - Doh!!

So it was go time...Joe and I busted out the paint and got to it, spreading a gorgeous, brown, expresso colored enamel on the headboard, footboard and rails. 

And we had to be careful not to get any runs or air bubbles in it. Because I am a perfectionist and don't you know it has to be immaculate! My mother would be proud.

So after two luscious coats, a good basking in the sun for extra measure the bed was coming home! I was so excited I could hardly sleep the night before! I even got up early, cleaned the wood floors to remove any traces of cat hair, dust and dirt and prepared my room for sleeping greatness. I was like a kid on Christmas morning.

And here it is all put together!!!! Doesn't it look beautiful...so perfect and EXACTLY what I wanted! Joe rocks.

Now comes the moment of truth...putting the box spring, mattresses and the bedding on my new queenly throne!


Not only is the frame too small for my queen sized bed...but its too large for my roommates full sized bed...hmmmm. But Joe tells me all is not lost...he can fix it. And I believe it because:

1) he has made square rails fit into round holes

2) he has made a once thought to be solid wood antique bed look like a damn good replica of a solid wood bed

So I am entrusting my newly painted, slightly irregularly sized bed frame back into the custody of one Joe Mayer for modification and rehabilitation. And hey, if it doesn't work out I'm still out less than $200 and I get to write a creative craigslist post ;)

Stay tuned. 

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Raleigh Maroon

Last night I went to go see Melissa Ludwig, higher education writer for the San Antonio Express News and her band Raleigh Maroon. Can I just say WOW was I impressed. And I consider myself a pretty good music connoisseur.

They're a cover band but have many of their own pieces that are quite incredible. Melissa has a set of pipes that just blew me away when they did a rendition of Wild Horses.

Raleigh Maroon plays all over San Antonio, about 3-4 times a week. I caught them at Valintino's di Olmos where they have a steady gig every Friday night for the restaurant crowd.

Here is their rendition of Hotel California which gave me chills.

Hanging with Chris and Jason

Can I just say this...I love Chris and Jason...the guys from 1250 The Zone. If ever a girl needs a quick pick me up ego wise or a little attention these two will give it to you. They are sooooo complimentary. 

The past few months they have been gracious enough to let me come on the show and chit chat with them. I have been able to join the cast of gorgeous ladies like Kim Fisher of WOAI, Trish Deberry-Mehia of GDC and a host of many other lovely Zone Girls who regularly make appearances on the show. They even invited me back for chick week next week.

They were even nice enough to make this video for me during their recent live shot at RioRio Cantina on the Riverwalk this past Friday.

BTW...the bed is finished and will be delivered on Sunday...stay tuned for the blog post ;)

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

The Bed - The Belated Tuesday Update

So I've been super busy this week and haven't had much of a chance to post this video I shot of the progress on the bed project. My bad. But here is the update...

When I got to Joe's house Tuesday night he had a bit of a family thing he had to take care of so he left me to my own devices in the workshop with a bunch of sand paper, some pain thinner and some primer...sounds like a recipe for disaster right??. But for the *hawh* (I blew on my knuckles and rubbed them on my shirt if you didn't pick up the reference) "expert" (and I say that sarcastically) that I have become in refinishing projects...it was cool. With Katy the shop dog to keep me out of trouble, this is how the bed is shaping up:

Shortly thereafter, Joe returned. And by that time, I had painted the other side of the head board, the flip side of the rails and footboard, and it was time to call it a night. But not before taking a few minutes to chat and enjoy the fruits of our labor...

Oh and pose with silly sunglasses...I'm such a dork ;)

Sunday, June 14, 2009

The Bed - Weekend 1

So this weekend I embarked on a HGTV style bed frame makeover. I started with this bed frame which turned out not to be an antique at all. My first clue was the made in China sticker on the bottom ;) My second clue were the A & B assembly stickers we discovered when we took the bed apart. Hmmmm...no biggie Joe and I can work with this and we did. With Katy our assistant carefully watching our progress.

The first thing we did was chop the foot board down to size. Joe is amazingly accurate with a table saw and in no time we had a much smaller foot board. He also cut the round trimming off the top of the footboard, figured a way to drill a few holes in it and affix it to the bottom piece so it looked like one solid piece. 

Turns out my dirty job isn't sanding, yet, first I have to do a lot of stripping. Of paint cochinos!! I have to strip the paint off of the legs and both sides of the head board. 

It took me half a day Saturday and most of the day Sunday to get all the gooey paint and stripper off the head board. That's when we realized after a few test spots on some of the extra foot board wood that the stain we had planned to use wouldn't take. The reason...it's not real wood. It's pressed board and doesn't stain right...hmmmm another setback. 

So that paint I just took off...we're going to pick a new color, sand the frame and paint it again ;) I start that portion of the project Tuesday.

The good news is Joe being super handy with the table saw figured out the problem with the square rails having to fit into round holes...We, or should I say he, just made new slots for the rails and secured them with bolts. We're making progress...stay tuned ;)

Saturday, June 13, 2009

The Bed

So at the beginning of the year I got a new bed. Not just any bed, a really nice bed. I mean I pulled out all the stops and got myself one with lumbar support, memory foam and all the trimmings. The reason: I'm a sleeper. Ask anyone who knows me and they will tell you I can sleep for hours at a time. My typical naps are 3-4 hours long and I require at least 8-9 hours of sleep every night. The only problem...I don't have a frame for it. Its currently sitting on my floor. Note the coyote doll...I am a true spurs fan ;)

Although I've made the best of my current situation, I'm holding out for the perfect bed frame. My problem is I have Pottery Barn dreams on a HGTV budget. This is what I want: but I can't even fathom paying $1000 bucks for it.

So I talked with my friend Joe Mayer, who is a carpenter and woodworker about building something like it. I used to take wood shop in school so I'm always down for a project. And I know my way around a table saw so bring it right? But he suggested that if I wanted something like a sleigh bed without the high footboard then to buy a sleigh bed and we'd cut it down...hmmmm.

So yesterday I found a antique sleigh bed on Craigslist. I should mention that I love antiques. I love taking anything old and refinishing it. I love old houses too which is why I'm looking for a home in a historic neighborhood. I love the character. But I'm cheap too. The woman wanted $150 for it at a garage sale. After negotiating her down to $100 and getting her to deliver it to my house this is what I ended up with.

I'll keep you posted on my progress ;)

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

To my Pops

Yesterday was the 13th anniversary of my fathers death. He died far too young at the age of 43. 

I was barely 19 when he passed away suddenly from a series of brain aneurisms one weekend and because of stupid choices I made I wasn't at the hospital. Instead of being by his bedside, I was off partying with my friends in Palm Springs. 

I still remember stumbling back home to my grandparents house and passing out drunk only to have them wake me a short time later to tell me my father had suffered another aneurism and was brain dead. It was a sobering experience to say the least.

It has taken me a long time to forgive myself for not being there and it was a long spiral down along the way. Today I realize I can't change the past but I can change the future and honor him for the man he was.

My father, Edward James Tejeda, was an amazing man. At 6'3" he could pick me up, hold me upside down with one hand and tickle me with the other - even when I was 18 years old and pushing 5'8" tall. He loved the Beatles, the band and the car (I know they're spelled differently), he was a man of nature and introduced me to snow. 

My dad taught me how to play connect 4, collect eggs from chickens and gave me a lop eared bunny on Easter. He got such a kick out of hiding Easter eggs. My step mom used to tell me he would laugh and cackle about how my brother and I would never find them. 

My father could take apart and build anything. He was an industrial plumber. I used to watch for hours as he would go over blue prints on the kitchen table with his long hair spilling over his shoulders. My father always had long hair - he used to let me brush it and pull it back into a low ponytail. 

As I got older we would sit on the porch at night and talk, looking out into the desert. He helped me skin my first snake, took me fishing for catfish in the canals and even took me on a hike.

The best part were his hugs. I miss his hugs. I remember just reaching my arms around as far as they would go and putting my head on his chest. He always smelled a little like motor oil and cigarettes (he was a smoker). That combination still brings back warm memories whenever I meet someone who smells that way.

His death came at a very dark time in my life and I'm ashamed to say that I wasn't sober through his funeral. I couldn't cope with the guilt, shame and loss so I checked out. In fact I don't even really remember it. 

I had the chance recently to view the video of his funeral for the first time through sober eyes over memorial day. It was surreal, to say the least, to see myself in the video. But I also got to see all the wonderful people who were there to support my family and remember my father.

My father was a good man with a lot of friends. He wasn't a perfect man by any means. None of us are. But when I think back on all the memories I have of him, I am flooded with gratitude that for a short while I got to be daddy's little girl.

Edward James Tejeda
1-29-53 ~ 6-9-96

Monday, June 8, 2009

Flying the Couch

So I got sucked into Home and Garden Television this weekend. I know what you're thinking I need to get a life. But really I did other things this weekend. Honest...I did!

I did my normal Saturday night hit up the Bonham, dance my ass off 'till the wee hours of the morning only to come home exhausted and sack out. But during my down time I found myself kicking it on the couch turning the Dish to HGTV.

It could be because I've got houses on the brain and I'm searching for inspiration.  It could be because I'm genetically engineered to like the channel - its my mom's favorite one, especially any show that has to do with organization. It could also be because there was nothing else saved on my DVR but either way I kept flipping from my normal crime shows back to HGTV. I feel like @normalguyguide who is a HGTV junkie. 

Then last night, I had planned to go to bed early but instead got hooked on the HGTV $250k Challenge where several families in one neighborhood renovate their homes, one room at a time, to compete for the grand prize. An hour later I was on pins and needles waiting to see who was eliminated. I even set my DVR to record the next episode in case I forgot next Sunday. 

Wow...That didn't take long to get me hooked and I normally hate reality TV. Looks like I have a new guilty pleasure. 

So my next question is...what's it going to take to get one of the HGTV designers to come to my new place, when I buy it, bust out that table saw, some paint, a little TV magic and make my house a picture perfect home?