Monday, December 29, 2008

ALmost a New Year

Did you have a good Christmas? I did. It was very busy and hectic, but it was great just the same. Got some Christmas cash to go spend... (Maybe at RR? Their 40% off sale starts today. Anybody else want to go?) And got to spend time with my munchkins, always my favorite part.

Faxonisms:

Faxon: Santa’s going to bring me an Xbox, a PSP and a million games.
Me: A million? That’s a bunch. Santa’s elves are going to be working overtime.
Faxon: That’s okay, they’ll do it for me.
Me: I dunno. Those elves are union, ya know, and Santa doesn’t want to pay them overtime and mess with their union.
Faxon: Aw, they’ll do it. Because I’ve been extra special good this year.

(Said at the dinner table)
Me: Be careful with those plates. That’s the last thing I want to do is clean up a mess.
Faxon: Oh, sarcasm, (said with an eyeroll)
Me: Honey, I am the queen of sarcasm, you have a long way to go to catch up with me.

(Said while hamming it up for the kid’s flip camera that Cassidy got)
Faxon: This show is money, money, money, like cash in my pocket. I got a whole $20!!!

(Said at Nana’s house, a teenage cousin was visiting and she was talking about her younger cousin who also usually visits, but not this time.)
Faxon: Austin!?!?!? Never heard of him. (DH is laughing hysterically at this.)
(Then upon seeing said cousin’s picture...)
Faxon: That kid need’s a hair cut!

Add this to the story his father told me about how he placed a $900 order on Amazon. The only way BIL found out was the email confirmation was sent to his IPhone and he cancelled it immediately. Hoo boy, and this kid isn’t even 7 yet??? Look out!

There was a little drama (isn’t there always) as MIL and her mother aren’t speaking to each other. So we had to visit them separately instead of together. Let’s just say that some people have a knack for revisionist history. :eyeroll: But we moved on and the rest of the day was great.

Worked on Friday (that’s a story for another day.) and then went home around 2pm to take a nap. We had dinner at ABC Pizza and then stopped at Target, and I picked up a few things. I wanted a new tree, but all the ones they had only had clear lights, not colored ones, which is too bad, because they were at a good price.

I’m seeing light at the end of the tunnel in my scrap room. I went through 3 of my 4 sticker albums and took up half a garbage bag. Who knew???? All I have left is my desk, and one set of drawers which is mostly memorabilia, programs, ticket stubs, cards, things like that. Then comes the task of putting everything away. Oh, boy will this be fun. One thing I didn’t realize, is how much darn chipboard I’ve accumulated. I have almost a four foot high stack!

Well, this is getting long, I’m on page 2 of Word, so I will sign off for now. Happy New Year everyone.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Three Days Until Christmas

Ah, just three more days until the big day. I *almost* got all my Christmas cards out. Yes, I am a slacker. I finished almost all of them on Friday. I had a few stragglers I didn’t have addresses for, etc. Then on Saturday, someone I thought was off the list showed up again! ACK! (Did you read Sally Forth in the paper yesterday? I had that EXACT conversation on Saturday.)

So, I had everything ready to go today, or so I thought. I got here this morning and realized I’d forgotten the mailing labels. D’OH!!!! So they will get mailed tomorrow. So a few of you out there in blogland may be getting your card the day AFTER Christmas. Sorry about that folks. L

I did all my grocery shopping on Saturday for the week. I’m making my world famous (HA!) spinach dip for work, broccoli casserole, Cajun shrimp, these little chocolate mousie things I found in Simple & Delicious, and a pizza bread for the neighbor’s party tomorrow. I really don’t want to go to the neighbor’s “Hanakkamas”party, but it’s one of those “you feel obligated” things. I’m way closer to my bunco girls of course, but none of them will be at this party. Sigh! I do have a couple friends that will be there, though (both named Linda, ironically, enough!)

I cleaned like a freak yesterday, but still didn’t get the bathrooms done. Tonight I will do that. I did a ton of laundry. Got all but one load done, and started some of the ironing. Started the gift wrapping. Will finish that up tonite, too. Except for bows and ribbons, I wait until the last minute for those. If not, Miles will eat them. Hehe. I watched two different Christmas Carols on Saturday.

I’m on my fourth bag of scraproom garbage. How do we accumulate all this junk? This time it was mostly scraps. You know, when you make a page or something, and you think, Oh, I’m going to save this one little inch scrap because I can use it on a card or something else. And then what happens? You get overrun by those little scraps. So out they went.

Well, the carols are going, and it’s time for the final countdown. I’m feeling pretty calm and relaxed so far. Let’s hope it stays that way.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Lovin my gifts!!















Ah, good morning. I’m basking in the glow of a wonderful weekend. It was a great party Saturday night. Everyone had a great time and we had loads of yummy food. Oh, man, we had roast pork, and ham, and potatoes, and shrimp and crap dip, and a big ole salad, and about a gazillion desserts, including home made turtle! WOW!!! It was all so good.

We had a great gift exchange. Everyone is so blessed and lucky. I got a load of stuff from the great Miss Elle! Do you know how wonderful she is? Well, of course you do, but I thought I’d remind you. She just goes above and beyond for everyone. Even the babies got stuff. They got their own stocking and enough catnip toys to last them for a year!






And you know those great bags that Terese from the Hilltop girls makes? Well, I got not one, not two, BUT FOUR of them. Each one is a beauty. That Terese does some great work! And each one of them was filled with the brim. Let me tell you another thing that Elle did, that she was so talented at. She is embroidering now, and will have a business soon embroidering professionally. If you have a chance, too, check out her work. I think Kip took a few pics on her blog. It is simply gorgeous.

I had Gerri-Anne, and it looked like she had a lot of fun, too. I hope so. I hope she had a great time, and loved her gifts. She’s the best!

We also went to downtown Tarpon, and checked out some of the antique stores. Very cute! Found an old bar to hang out at. More fun! It was such a great night we really didn’t want it to end. So thanks to all my stocking pals, I love you all! And big huge thanks to Elle for making it extra special for me this year.

And one last big shoutout to Teri who passed her exams this semester. Just one more left!!

Friday, December 12, 2008

It's Friday again!

Well, is it Friday again? OMG, it is!!! Where did this week go? I got my FINAL Stocking Pal gift this morning. Yes, the final. Yes, I do procrastinate. I won’t say what it is. But I did get it while buying my coffee this morning. (Ah, heck, Mar, everyone had coffee something on their list, that’s not a hint.) hehehehe! You will just have to wait until tomorrow whoever you are. I hope you are (pleasantly!) surprised.

I am going over about 4. (JULES!) I don’t know if I am sleeping over or not. Jules may have a packed house, and DH is going to the neighborhood party (by himself, shocker!) It will all depend on how late we’re up, and of course, the alcohol consumption. LOL! (Me, a drinker? Never!)

So, as you can see I’m getting into this holiday spirit. Although Eric just told me that the Indian place we were supposed to eat lunch at has closed down. This was my delayed birthday lunch, since last week was such a mess, and with meetings and stuff we couldn’t go. And I had picked the Indian buffet, since Deb is off today and she hates Indian food. Well that’s a bummer. So we’re going to Fred Flemings instead. Let me tell you about this cornbread they have. It’s not just any cornbread. It’s about the size of your head, with lots of real corn and melted cheddar on top. OMG, it’s the best!!! I’m craving it.

I was going a little crazy yesterday, lots of work stuff piling on top of me. But I’ve seem to have gotten a handle on it. I went to the store. Lost my list and forgot half the stuff I needed to bake for tomorrow. Oh well, I have to run to Target anyway, so I’ll get that over with. Get my nails done, pick up my prescriptions (which I forgot yesterday, DOH!). Start my baking and my gift wrapping. I have a feeling it will be a late night.

Speaking of late nights, Miles’s favorite place to sleep is on top of my head. I have no idea why. It can’t be comfortable. It’s not comfortable for me. But Wednesday night he did not go to bed. Whenever I’d get up to go to the bathroom he wasn’t there. When I woke up the next morning I figured out why. Little shit had knocked over my little purple tree in the dining room. He must’ve had a guilty conscience and decided he better keep away. The little bugger!

Well, I’m keeping with the Christmas spirit. I’ve got my Christmas Tree Target T-Shirt on, and I’m listening to Christmas songs here at my desk. Right now, it’s playing the Misfit Toy song from Rudolph. (When Christmas Day is Here, the Most Wonderful Day of the Year!) So here’s looking forward to a weekend full of Christmas-y goodness!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Here we are again

Well, you know it rains, it pours.

I had fully expected to sleep in late on Friday, when about 6am, DH proceeds to tell me that our computer has crashed. Completely! All it does is cycle through like it’s going to log on, then it stops and cycles through again. Just lovely. I really needed this 3 weeks before Christmas.

So we got a new computer Friday. It’s a nice HP with 500 gig of memory and wireless LAN and lots of other fancy stuff that I will never use. I got a cheap HP printer too, for $30, since the other one was way old, and I knew for sure it wouldn’t be Vista compatible. DH spent almost all weekend loading it up with our old stuff, and everything else. Seems we’ve got most of the kinks worked out. One thing that is not working is the scanner. Epson has a driver that you are supposed to download to get it to work, but something about the driver is for 16 bit Vista, and we are using 32 bit.

We’re also having some issues with Windows Mail or whatever it is called. Apparently you can’t use Outlook Express with Vista???? Anyways, for some strange reason, it wants to combine mine and DH’s address books into one. And I’m not sure how to get around this. Any computer experts want to weigh in on this one?

The house is all decorated, at least the inside. The outside is DH’s job, and we have 3 reindeer and a tree, that’s it for now. The rest will go up sometime, we’re in no hurry.

I’ve been cleaning out the scraproom too. I so far am on my 3rd bag of garbage, and have another VERY full garbage bag of stuff to give away, charity, etc. If you know anyone who would like this stuff, let me know. It’s a lot of older stuff, some of those old CM kits, and some templates. I had four (4!) paper trimmers. What the heck do you do with 4 paper trimmers? You know the drill, you buy what you think is the greatest, then someone comes out with something better, and then something better than that, and so on and so on. I know DH is ready for me to be done with this room, because everything that is in the room is sitting in the hallway. Oopsie! Well, someday.

And I found a ton of cards from swaps and stuff. Looks like I am going the Linda-way and give these cards all out for Christmas. I just don’t see it possible to even begin to work on cards at this point. Everyone else is getting a store-bought card. Yes, I know hard to imagine, but right now, my heart’s not in it. Soon, I promise.

Right now, I’m just taking one day at a time.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

a kind of blue...

Well, as far as birthdays go, this one is going to be the crappiest.

Melody is not doing very good. She’s been very lethargic, labored breathing, and she’s been hiding under the bed the last few days. I’m going to call Dr. Keene when they open and take her in, hopefully this afternoon.

It seems no matter how much you prepare yourself for this, you never quite are. I think her being so healthy the last few months had lulled me into a false sense of security.

I just tell myself that we really don’t know her true age, as she was a stray. And you just have to know that we gave her an extra 10 years in a warm safe house with plenty of love and food, which is a lot better off than she would have been if we hadn’t of found her.

Still, it doesn’t make it easier does it?

Then I think back to my friend Eric, and the day he had. Somebody shot his dog on Tuesday.

Nikki had got out an open door, and before his wife could jump in the car after her, she heard the shots three doors down. The neighbor claims that the dog was attacking him, but there were witnesses that said the dog was walking away and he shot her in the back. Other neighbors had even heard the man say if he saw the dog out, he would shoot her. The police say that since the man felt threatened, and since he had a concealed weapons permit; there was nothing they could charge him with. I also found out that this neighbor threatened to kill my friend's wife in an email while she was HOA president. She has a copy of the email she is taking to the police today and is filing a restraining order and starting civil proceedings.
They have two little ones (and yes, they were there when this went down.) All of us were at Epcot over the weekend. Nikki was a good dog, never would attack anyone and was very loving to the two children.

It just makes me sick thinking about this. Why are human beings like this allowed to roam the earth? I just don’t get it.

Life just sucks sometimes, ya know? And you got to get it all out.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Just a quickie...from last night

You can't really make out faces...I'm to the left of the people in green, second row, second in. I'm behind the lady in red on the end...






Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Happy Turkey Day!

Well, turkey day is just about upon us. I hope you all have lots of good plans for the holiday. I started the stuffing last night. And I’ll do a few desserts, and that’s it for me, cooking wise. We’ll be at the in-laws at noon, and then head to have dinner with the McCoy’s at 5:00. Ryan is actually hosting this year, down in Redington. He's deep-frying his turkey, yum yum!

Speaking of family, step-mil wants to draw names this year. Because my BIL’s business is so bad, and we need to “save money.” Hmmm...I don’t see BIL downsizing his house, or taking his kids out of expensive prep school to go to public school (especially the one his own wife TEACHES at!). Has he stopped trading in cars every 6 months? Is he still driving his Mercedes? Yes, I thought so.

So the adults (allegedly) will change names. I have no problem with this. It does make life easier. But the problem is...WE HAVEN’T DONE IT YET!!! I ASSumed we were doing it on Saturday, when we had dinner, but it was not even mentioned. And we really can’t do it on Thanksgiving, because the whole extended family is there. And considering I start shopping on Friday, it would be nice to know who the heck I’m buying for, ya know? Well, at least I can start toy shopping.

But on to happier things. Saturday is the Candlelight Processional at Epcot. I can’t wait, it’s going to be awesome. 200+ voices, and orchestra...oh, did I tell you who the guest narrator is? John O’Hurley! (Seinfeld, Dancing with the Stars.) I love his voice. Eric and his family will be there. DH can’t be there, but I don’t blame him. $75+ to go to Epcot, plus parking is really out of our budget just so he can stand in a crowd to catch a 2-second glimpse. I’m sure there will YouTube videos come Sunday. There are a ton on there from last year.

There is actually a reception/rehearsal for the SingLive UK people in Orlando tonight. I was all set to go Monday, but now I am changing my mind. Just too much to do. I haven’t even gotten my nails/eyebrows done this week.

I haven’t made shopping plans yet, for Friday. I’m waiting for the ads to come out tomorrow to plan my strategy. I know I’ll hit Target, and probably Macy’s. Then maybe Rubon? Also, Scrapbook Shoppe is having their sale at MIDNIGHT! On Thursday, but being down near the beach, I’m not sure how that will work. I’ll miss Michael’s sale on Thanksgiving, they are open 6-9. Again, it’s all a game day decision.

Well, everyone have a Great Thanksgiving. See ya soon!

Monday, November 24, 2008

from Linda via Kip

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? Both>>

2. Real tree or Artificial? Artifical, with the cats

3. When do you put up the tree? The day after Thanksgiving

4. When do you take the tree down? New Year’s Day

5. Do you like Egg Nog? OMG yes.

6. Favorite gift received as a child? Barbie Dream House at 8

7. Hardest person to buy for? My FIL, he has everything and likes nothing

8. Easiest person to buy for? DH

9. Do you have a nativity scene? A few actually

10. Mail or email Christmas cards? Mail them, hopefully by Dec 24th!

11. Worst Christmas gift you ever received? A fur coat that I had bought on layaway from my mother. She thought it would be cute to pick it up for me and wrap it. Yep, I got a Christmas present that I paid for myself.

12. Favorite Christmas Movie. A Christmas Carol...the original

13. When do you start shopping for Christmas? Usually mid-November, with the bulk of it right after Thanksgiving and the week after

14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? Yep, sure have.

15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Dessert!

16. Lights on the tree? Yes, and lots of them.

17. Favorite Christmas song? Do you Hear What I Hear

18. Travel at Christmas or stay home? Stay home and travel locally.

19. Can you name all of Santa's reindeer's? Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner and Blitzen..and of course, Rudolph.

20. Angel on the tree top or a star? Neither, it’s a purple pointy thing.

21. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning Morning.

22. Most annoying thing about this time of the year? Annoying family members who want it their way or the high way.

23. Favorite ornament theme or color? Lots of purple (duh!) and lots of Pooh.

24. Who is least likely to respond to this? Umm ?

25 . Favorite for Christmas dinner? Lasagna, cannolis, potatoes (yes, we are Italian)

26 . What do you want for Christmas this year? I wanted a Slice, but I got that. Maybe a camera, but that might be out of the budget this year.

27 . Who is most likely to respond to this? Oh they will do it. It is fun!!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Monday blows...

Well, I am back among the living...sort of. I still have this horrible cough. This morning, green gunk came up. Usually if it’s green, that means infection as opposed to a virus, but I will give it one more day, and if I’m still crappy, I will call Dr. Kampsen. I could go to the Little Clinic (and save $15 on my co-pay), but I really need the “good” cough syrup, and the Little Clinic is not allowed to prescribe narcotics. But maybe tonight I will turn a corner, right?

I was going to go with DH to the Bucs game, but I was just too tired. I stayed home and lounged some. Watched a few movies. 27 Dresses is a great movie if you haven’t seen it. A little contrived and predictable, but still cute. And I’ve decided I’m going to cut my hair like Katherine Heigl’s in that movie, if I can find a picture of it. Also watched some old movies and caught the last 20 minutes of Imitation of Life. Seriously, the saddest death scene ever. If you don’t cry when that old lady dies, then there is something wrong with you.

Great football weekend. Do you know that the Gators have scored at least 30 points against all of their SEC opponents this season? That’s an SEC record. I don’t want to get too confident or too ahead of ourselves, but could the Orange Bowl be in our future? I definitely think so. The Bucs won too, it was hard but they did it.

On a musical note, (haha) I’m cancelling our XM subscription. Sirius has just come in and FUBAR’d all my stations. People are seriously (another pun!) pissed. I’ll just have to buy a better transmitter for my Ipod. Maybe I will ask the ‘rents for one for Xmas. We’ll see.

Busy day ahead. Got a lot of work to catch up on (why does it take you 5 days to catch up when you are only out 2?). P.T., choir rehearsal, a trip to Bealls and some food somewhere in there. (Maybe Sweet Tomatoes, hummm??) Well, back to my invoices.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Sorry Folks...

But I have the flu bug. Will post more when I stop feeling like death...

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The End of an Error

I’m very happy with the election returns. It’s a new day for us, and I am extremely proud. And the turnout was spectacular. I don’t think I’ve ever seen it so high!

My precinct (the Lutz Mason Lodge) early in the morning had a line wrapped twice around the building, and cars parked a half mile down the road. The little Baptist church down the road was just as bad. When I got home last night, the church still had cars parked on the median, and lines out the door, but the lodge had calmed down some, and I was in and out in about 15 minutes, even got a chance to chat with my neighbor Bill for a minute or two.

There can never be an election day in Florida without some snags, especially in Hillsborough County. Computer issues, people not getting all their pages, extremely long lines, especially at USF where there were only 2! Poll workers. Their excuse was “well, we figured all the students would be voting by absentee.” I call Bullshit!!!

2 reasons:
1) They should know ahead of time which ballots they receive absentee. Case in point, one of my Drunco girl’s family’s names were right below mine on the ballot. And it clearly said under her step-daughter’s name “absentee ballot.”
2) This is one the most historic elections in history, and a first time for a lot of these kids. (My first presidential election was in ’92 at USF, btw.)

And then I hear there was a physical confrontation with Buddy Johnson’s staff and some of the news people? WTF? How’s that for public relations? DH says he wished they voted for the Supervisor of Elections AFTER the election, because he would be changing his vote.

Amendments 1 and 2 didn’t pass unfortunately. And the County Mayor’s veto DID! I’m sorry I can only blame most of this on one thing. Ignorance. Pure and simple. The ballots are complicated, they are written in legalese and in our wham-bam society no one takes the time to look at the actual issues involved.

Amendment 2 not passing doesn’t surprise me. Ignorance, fear. Just about every church in town was pushing this on their members. (so much for churches being neutral). Dh also feels that the opposing side didn’t really do as much to educate their side of the issue. Now my question is, will this be up again in a few years? I’d like to think I hope so. But I’ll say this one final time for today: KEEP RELIGION OUT OF POLITICS! IT HAS NO PLACE!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

It ain't over til it's over

And it’s over. But our boys gave a good effort! If you had told me a year ago, we’d be in the World Series, I wouldn’t have believed you. Don’t worry, they will be back next year and they WILL win!!!! At least now we will be going to bed at a decent time, haha.

The doctor sent me to physical therapy for my shoulder and I started yesterday. I’m not happy about it, but since I’m not getting better, I guess I’ve got to do it. I really thought the ortho doc would just give me a steroid shot and send me on my way, since my x-rays were negative. I really didn’t expect this. So I am grinning and bearing it. I go MWF at 4pm for the next two weeks or so. I forgot tomorrow was Halloween when I made the appointment, so I’m going to be late for the kids party. But I’ll get there, once I fight the traffic.

I still haven’t unpacked from Creepover. As if that’s a big surprise. I lost my liquor. LOL! I know it’s in the car somewhere, because I hear it rattling, but it must have fallen behind the seat or something, because I can’t find it. ACK! It’s all worth it though. I admit to being unproductive, but spending quality time with my girls is NEVER unproductive to me. It is well, well worth it. (Although, I don’t think my ears have recovered yet, Kip! ROFL!)

Jayne is in town, yay! Been a while since I’ve seen her, so I’m hoping to catch up with her and Kip on Saturday at Ruban Rouge. They are having their “garage sale”, so hoping to snag up some bargains, and then lunch somewhere I think. You know me, I go with the flow.

Winter Retreat has been finalized, and it’s back to Oleno, which makes everyone happy. (Okay, so I was holding out for the Girl Scout place, I have this thing about wanting heat, hehe! But when they don’t you back, well....) I’ll miss the Thursday night festivities because I will be at the Forum watching The Eagles! (Yes, Michele, I am rubbing it in!) hehehehe! But I will be up at the crack of dawn Friday morning (okay, more like mid-morning, I know better!) to make it up there, so no worries. I won’t miss out.

And lastly, yes I know this kind of rubs salt in the wound, but this is tow good of a deal to pass up! 620 WDAE does double play deals on Wednesdays. It basically gives you $50 worth of gift certificates for $25. Yesterday’s deal was for Philly Phlava on Fletcher and Dale Mabry. They have the best cheese steaks by far! A while ago they did the same for Jake’s Hamburgers, and it looks like they still have a few of those left. Check it out.

http://diningdeals.620wdae.com/?page=/restaurants/index.html&rest_id=3878

Monday, October 20, 2008

Rays Win! Rays Win!!!!

Dude, I am so flippin’ tired. Did you ever think we would see the day when we would be seeing the Rays in the World Series? I went to bed at 1am, after waking up around 11:40 to catch the end. Dh got home around 1 and didn’t go to bed until I got up around 6:00. He is riding sky-high. A very cool thing, after the Bucs game, at Raymond James, they showed the rest of the baseball game on the jumbotron. About 6,000 fans stayed at the RJ to see the Rays clinch. What an exciting moment. Now, I’m waiting for him to wake up (which probably won’t be for several hours now) to see if we got the World Series lottery. Those tix go on sale at 5pm today.

We had the day off on Friday to give us a post-Oct 15th rest, and to upgrade the servers, so I took advantage to get a lot of running around done. Went to Walmart and Walgreens and Publix and Hallmark and Big Lots. I made meatballs for dinner on Friday night and they are quite good. And I made the candy-peep jars for the youngins on Halloween. I got to get me a card reader for my office computer, so I can get pics loaded, it’s just to hard to get done at home.

Went to step-cousin-in-law’s baby shower on Saturday. The girls were there and they got to play with the other step-cousin-in-law’s baby (did you follow all that?) and they were so cute. There were some arts and crafts stuff for them to play with and they did very well for their first shower. I remember one shower I went to years ago, where someone brought their kid who was the same age, and the kid ran around screaming and touching everything and would not settle down. Not “my” kids. They were very well behaved. The food was great, and it was from the same place as the last baby shower, but I cannot for the life of me remember the name of it. All I can think of is Alessi, and I know it’s not that (but they have good food, too!)

So, I spent yesterday getting caught up around the house. I’m in the process of working on Frankie for Creepover. I’ve got some cute ideas for him, I think he’ll be cute. I gotta get my hat done too, for the cancer patients. That’s important too. Well, four more days. Yay!

I know the Hilltop girls are disappointed as their Belize stop on their cruise got cancelled. I hope they can get it figured out. I don’t blame them, I’ve been to Cozumel many times, and it does get boring with the same old stuff. Luckily DH has only been once and he hasn’t seen everything yet. One word of advice I’d give them, if they do decide to stick with this itinerary, is just stay on the ship. You’ll have free run of the ship, especially by the pool. Most of the time, the pool area is very crowded and you won’t find a good seat, but when everyone else is off the boat, you will have the best seats in the house. We did this on our Ocho Rios stop and it was great. There were maybe ten of us around the pool, the pool and we got to enjoy it and not worry about jockeying for position. Just my 2 cents which are probably worth about ½ cent in this economy. LOL!

Monday, October 13, 2008

A New Week

Well, it’s Monday again. I kept pretty busy this weekend, plus with all the games on. Did some shopping too, and some ironing and other just general cleaning up the house. House cleaning is such a bore. Yawn. I need a maid. Any volunteers, LOL!

We checked out a new Japanese place on 4th on Friday. I had a lunch “box” special with tempura, spring roll, salad and your choice of sushi. I had the spicy salmon and it was spicy, gave me heartburn. But it was oh so yummy! I went to Kohl’s Friday nite and checked out the sale. Got some work clothes, a few Halloween goodies, and a couple of baby outfits for the shower I have to go to on Saturday.

Then Saturday, I did the usual Publix run, and then settled in for a sports-filled day. We made yummy fajitas with steak and chicken. We marinated them first (Note to Michele: Lawry’s Marinades BOGO, and there was a coupon in yesterday’s paper.) and grilled them with peppers and onions. I used the hot peppers we got from New Mexico in them, and they were just okay. I tried those “Green bags” that they advertise on TV. Not worth it. Yes, the food still “looks” pretty. But it doesn’t taste as fresh.

Sunday, I went to Babies R Us to pick up a registry gift, then to Michael’s, and then to the new Dollar Tree, and then to Big Lots. I got some cute mini album kits at the Dollar Tree. (As DH would say “How much were they?” “Uh, honey, it’s the DOLLAR store!” Hehehe!) A few Xmas items too, same at Big Lots. At Big Lots, I found the Ghost Peeps for 95 cents, so that was a deal. And these chocolates that are wrapped up to look like eyeballs. The kids will get a kick out of those. No mason jars though, but they had the lids (?) and the canning kit. Odd! But that’s Big Lots for you. No biggie, I’ll get those at Wal-Mart.

Nothing exciting at Michael’s. Pretty sad when you have a 50% coupon and can’t find anything to use it on. Can’t use on Cricut/Cuttlebug, can’t use it on books. I ended up buying some Prima flowers. It was either that or ANOTHER pack of paper, of which I have 20 of the already. So, I picked that up and some Halloween stuff. That was about it.

The Gators opened up a can of whoop ass on LSU. I bet no one saw that coming. Rays tied up the series and now go back to Boston. Here’s keeping our fingers crossed for them. And the Bucs won. No one saw that coming. Overall not a bad day in the sports world.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Crucify

Fun thing I found on 2Ps the other day...Feel free to play along

1. Put Your iTunes, Windows Media Player, MP3 Player, or whatever on Shuffle.
2. For each question, press the next button to get your answer.
3. You must write down the name of the song no matter how silly it sounds!
4. Put any comments in brackets after the song name.
-----------------------------------------------------------------
If someone says, "Is this okay?" You say? Carnival – Natalie Merchant
How would you describe yourself? Lady Madonna – Beatles (yeah, that’s me!)
What do you like in a guy/girl? GTO – Ronny & The Daytonas
How do you feel today? Wild Honey Pie - Beatles (hehehe!)
What is your life's purpose? Welcome Home – Walter Jackson
What is your motto? Cloud Nine - Evanescence
What do your friends think of you? Luchenbach Texas – Waylon Jennings & Willie Nelson (I’m gonna hear it from Linda on this one!)
Tell me about your first date... Tear the Roof off the Sucker - Parliament
What would you write your own tombstone? Over and Over – Bobby Day
What do you think of your parents? Worlds Away – Go-Go’s (Now, that’s appropriate)
What do you think about very often? Convoy – CW McCall (okay, now this is bordering on embarrassing, folks!)
What is 2 + 2? Intro – Limp Bizkit
What do you think of your best friend? The Kind of Girl I Could Love – Monkees (awww..that’s sweet!)
What advice would you give to someone getting married? Raspberry Beret - Prince
What do you think of the person you like? What’s Happening Brother – Marvin Gaye (too bad it couldn’t be “Let’s Get It On.)
What is your life story? Stockton Gala Days – 10,000 Maniacs
What inspires you? Jerk It Out - Caesars
What's your greatest regret? Breath After Breath – Duran Duran
What do you want to be when you grow up? Come on Children, Let’s Sing – Mahalia Jackson (that’s not too far off!)
What makes you cry? If – Bread (yes, it does)
What is your fondest memory of your grandmother? Nowadays (Roxie) – Chicago Soundtrack
What do you think of when you see the person you like? This is How We Do It – Montell Jordon (Oh, Yeah!)
What will you dance to at your wedding? Good Love – Isaac Hayes (these are working out good!)
What will they play at your funeral? Everybody Has a Dream – Billy Joel
What is your hobby/interest? Long Tall Sally - Beatles
What is your biggest fear? There is a Balm in Gilead – Mahalia Jackson (huh?)
What is your biggest secret? Up The Beach – Jane’s Addiction
What song reminds you of you HS English teacher? Forget that Girl – Monkees (My HS English teach was a dude!)
What do you think of your friends? Get Back – Beatles
What will you post this as? Crucify – Tori Amos

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Hump Day!!!

Ah, morning all. The week is half over, yay! I don’t think I slept good last nite, (although DH said I was sawing a few logs.) I’ve been taking Celebrex for my shoulder, and it has been giving me these crazy f’ed up dreams. My shoulder feels 100% better, but I got the ole “Make sure you take the whole thing” lecture from the doc, so I will.

I had the kids for a little bit on Sunday. That was fun. We played games, like Monopoly Jr, and Old Maid. You know, I haven’t played Old Maid in over 30 years! They had to show me how. Hehe! We ate Nana’s spaghetti, and made Pioneer Woman’s cookies with the candy in the middle. Hey, did you know Pioneer Woman is writing a cookbook? How cool is that? I wonder if it will be out by Christmas time (hint to any Secret Santa’s out there). Actually, I don’t think it will be, as she just finished the actual writing part. You know how long it takes to edit, and re-edit, and print, and do all that stuff. Man, she must be living high on the hog. I’d love to be her (sans kids, though). But I think I’d get bored not having the beach close. Okay, okay, I’m rambling.

Rehearsals for Candlelight kicked off on Monday. The music is very hard, I must say. But it’s beautiful music. It’s closer to the classical stuff that I’m used to. That’s really cool. We are looking at possibly 5PM, the day after Thanksgiving, as that’s when the UK group sings. One thing I did learn is Disney treats their volunteer performers like actual cast members. They are very strict on dress code. Plain white shirts, no logos or designs or anything. Black flats, no buckles or anything. Plain black opaque socks, they cannot have designs or be see through. I was told that Disney actually has vending machines in the cast-only areas that sell socks, shaving equipment, things like that. And if you aren’t adhering to code, out you go. Fascinating.

How about a song of the day? Currently, it’s Tori Amos, Little Earthquakes. (I so love her! She could be a “girl crush!”)

Friday, October 3, 2008

It's Friday!

I just realized it’s after 1:00 and I haven’t done the Friday update. Sorry about that. Quiet day in this place we call Hell, er, I mean, Paradise. Haha! I finished off my last 2007 filing yesterday, 12 days ahead of schedule. So, now I can start harassing people about getting stuff ready for 2008. Oh, the joys of my world.

Just got back from lunch at TJ Flats. Tex-Mex, YUM! My favorite food in the world. I was good, I only ate half, and put the rest in a box, like all the food experts tell you to do. But I had a few chips and queso that my lunch buddy bought.

It’s been fairly quiet here. One of our team leaders, AKA the Beast, quit last Friday. A bunch of us did the happy dance. (Or as my friend called it my “Beyonce’” Dance. LOL!) But I thought the bosses were going to make us miserable when they got back from vacay, with her gone, but they’ve been surprisingly pleasant. See what 3 weeks in Europe will do. How do I get that vacation??? (or I could be KIP! :P )

Speaking of vacations, DH and I are booked for our annual vacation. As next year is our tenth anniversary, we splurged on a balcony suite. My first one ever. NIIICE! There’s also a chance (albeit slim) of going to London next fall with SingLive. I’ll have to check the prices first of all, with the dollar falling it may just be way too much to swing. And it’s a bad time of the year (mid-September). Although a few people have told me I would have an assistant by then, BUT, I’ve been hearing that for 3-4 years now and I haven’t seen it yet.
In the sports world, GOOOOO RAYS!!!! DH and I are checking out for a place to watch the game tonite. We may go to BWW (calm down, Michele!). We haven’t been there in eons, but it may be too crowded. Or Green Iguana, but I think that may be worse.

Oh, and in TV world, did you watch Private Practice? I gotta say out of the premieres, this one has been my favorite. (Well, next to ER!) Good show on Wednesday, I was afraid it was going to be boring, but when I heard they were going back to more medical stuff, that excited me. The only show on tonight is Life, and I’ll probably record it. I gotta get some stuff packed for the Ta-Ta crop! Fun, fun, fun!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Weekend Update

Good Morning, Good Morning. Hope everyone was well. Had a great time at Rubon Rouge this weekend. It was way too much fun. I ate a lot, drank a little (okay, a lot!) and worked on some projects. I’ll have to post some pictures soon! It was great getting to hang out with all my buds and just relax.

We lost a Hollywood legend on Saturday, with Paul Newman’s passing. I got to meet him (and Robby Benson) when I was about 12 years old. I remember how nice he was, and how pleased he was to meet us and take pictures with us. They were in Ft. Lauderdale filming the movie “Harry and Son”, and were filming some footage at my step-dad’s work. If you’ve ever seen the movie, there is a scene near the beginning where Paul Newman is bowling with his buddies and he bowls a strike. Well, he didn’t really bowl that strike. My step-dad did. Creative editing (ie, the magic of film) just made it look like he did. I’m not sure if he even knew how to bowl, it was just in the script. But, it is a memory that I will cherish forever.

SingLive rehearsals start in a week. I can’t believe summer is over all ready, and here we are preparing for Christmas. We’ll be singing at the Candlelight Processional in EPCOT around November 28th or 29th. Disney hasn’t firmed up the dates yet. So, if you want to mosey over to Disney that weekend, of course, you are more than welcome. It will be good to get back in the swing of things, anyway!

Speaking of Christmas, I think I may start some Christmas cards this weekend at the Ta-ta’s crop. I’d like to get a jump on them, and not procrastinate, like I always do. We’ll see how that goes.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Breakin' the law...Breakin' the law...

Yes, yours truly is a scofflaw, a criminal, a fugitive from the law. Yours truly has gotten..... A Speeding Ticket!!!!! (insert Dragnet music here!)

Yes, I fought the law...but the law won! Well, in this case, FHP. (And yes, I have a slightly low opinion of FHP, which may sound odd coming from a LEO’s spouse. But FHP has a low opinion of other LEA’s, so that goes both ways, I’m afraid!)

Sigh, I left the office Wednesday morning to go to a doctor’s appointment. And as I came across the Howard Franklin, at the end of the hump, there the sneaky bastard was with his radar hiding behind the concrete barrier. I tried to slow down, but I had forgotten my sunglasses and couldn’t see too well, so by the time I did, it was too late.

So, I got 80 in a 65. $185 plus driving school. And truth be known, I really only have myself to blame. I was an idiot. I was cruising in the left lane (something I never do, but I wasn’t getting off until Dale Mabry), and I let my usual Spidey senses go that morning, beings it was not rush hour (also unusual for me) with almost no traffic. So, I will pay the price.

This is my first ticket since ’02. This will also be my fourth driving school attempt. What, Mar, you didn’t learn the first 3 times? No, I never do. I’m a speed demon, I will the first one to admit it. And I take full responsibility for it. And pay the price when I get caught. My mom says I drive like my grandfather, he was the same way. Guess that’s why I drive an SUV and not a Mustang (which DH has been toying with the idea, heavens forbid!) I also have to realize, I am NOT young and cute anymore and can’t flirt my way out it, like I did in my college days. (My roommate was so envious of how I could get my way out of a ticket. I must have been pulled over a dozen times in my four (+) years of college, and only got two tickets. And one was a WOMAN FHP trooper!)

So, yes, some of us are drug addicts, some rob banks for a living. Others? Just can’t drive 55!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Two tags in one day!



First is from Teri! I got the blog award! Yay me!!!

Next is from Jules:

THE FIVE TAG

5 years ago I

1) was skinnier

2) was still working here!

3) was 5 years younger

4) hadn't met Jules or Kip yet

5) Was hangin out "underground", LOL!

5 things on today's "to do" list

1) reports for 08

2) my nails

3) get everything packed for tomorrow

4) print pictures for our project Saturday

5) figure out what to eat for dinner

5 snacks I enjoy

1) snickers

2) Wavy Lays

3) Trail Mix (preferably Target brand)

4) Chips Ahoy

5) Those little powdered donuts from the store

5 things I would do if I were a millionaire

1) buy a bigger house

2) cruise around the world

3) pay off the bills

4) buy new cars

5) have the hugest crop ever with all my friends.

5 places I have lived

1) Lutz

2) Tampa

3) Ft. Lauderdale

4) Gainesville

5) Long Island

5 jobs I have had

1) McDonald's

2) Walgreen's

3) Marshall's

4) waitress at Rocky Roccoco (pizza place in G'ville)

5) Analyst (my current job)

I tag Miami Dawn, Michele, Jayne, Teri, Linda!

Monday, September 22, 2008

A New Week

Oh, it’s Monday again. Uggg...I just don’t want to start this week, let me tell you. But I am here, and raring to go. Yeah, right! Crazy Bitch is playing on the IPod. Pretty appropriate for me today, wouldn’t you say?

Hey, I got some stuff done at the crop (yes, I did!) Worked on my clock some. Still a few little things to go (the picture, specifically). Finished the album kit, my SIL gave me. I’ll put pics in it and a few more embellishments, and give it back to her. And I did a few more pages in the boys’ mini books.

Linda and the gals did a great job on Saturday, as usual. It was a lot of fun, and got to meet some great new people, too. Deb and her husband are so gracious to let us use their church. They are very kind.

I got (almost) the entire house cleaned on Sunday. I’ll finish up the floors tonite, and I’ll be good. YAY me! Then I’ll spend some time in my scrap room getting ready for the Pink Crop this weekend. That will be a blast.

Great sports weekend too! Gators won! (Although, a lot of the columnists I am reading are not giving us much credit.) Bucs won in a nail biter (I swear, I just can’t watch anymore, it’s always so intense.) And of course, the Rays make it to playoffs. They have 6 games to clench the division. I’d love to hear the announcers cheer “The Rays won the pennant, the Rays won the pennant”, but I am getting ahead of myself, I know. We’ll see.

We made gorditas last night, and Publix had avocados on sale, so I made some homemade guacamole. One of my favorite things ever! YUM!!! I don’t have a recipe, I just through in what I have and it comes out different every time. Looking back now, I forgot to add any garlic, but I didn’t have any fresh anyway, so it’s all good.

I’m thinking about doing a Pampered Chef show in October. They are doing a 60% off Simple Additions special for hostesses, and I love the polka dot set. I’d love to get a few Christmas things too. So, we may shoot for around the 15th for that, I’m thinking. I’ll let y’all know.

I tried to watch “Michael Clayton” last nite, but couldn’t get through it. I love looking at George Clooney, but the last few movies of his I’ve watched have put me to sleep. Tell me this movie gets better????

Friday, September 12, 2008

Friday's here

Ah, I think I’m finally starting to get out my funk. It’s this time of year. Those of us in “tax/financial” world know that the corporate extensions are fast upon us, and everyone always waits until the last minute. Which always means a world of stress for me. And then when I’m home, all I want to do is vegetate, and hibernate, and any other word that ends in an “ate”.

One thing that always relieves stress from my mind is that the bosses are in Europe for the next three weeks. YAY!!!! So doing a happy dance at work today. Although, between you and me, there’s not going to be much work done around here, I have a feeling. Hehehe!

Well, I got the bad news on my car. The evaporator core had a leak. The price tag? How about $800!!!! Yep, that’s what it is. The mechanic refilled the Freon for now, and when it runs low, DH is going to try and refill it himself, like he’s been doing on the Taurus. We’ll see how it goes, and then work from there. At least it’s cold right now, and we’ll see how long it lasts. It’s one of those “cross that bridge when we come to it things”.

Got some big crop events coming up. The PINK Crop at Ruban Rouge is in two weeks, and I’m looking forward to it. And I just raised my hand for the Hilltop/KNK Pink Crop on the 4th. I’m really psyched up for it. I may even go to Ruskin next Saturday and surprise Linda. (shhh...don’t tell her. Hahahahahaha!)

I promised I’d make DH mac-n-cheese this weekend. Real cheese and real cream, yum! How can you go wrong, right? Now I have to think of something to go with it. Chicken tenders maybe? I’ll think of something when I go to the store tonight.

Hey, we haven't played a game of "What's on your IPOD?", lately. Let's spin the ole random function and see what we get...Wow, an oldie but goodie...Duke of Earl by Gene Chandler.

Here's to a great weekend.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

A new week

Ah, another week is upon us. Busy, busy, busy around here, as deadlines are looming. I just keep saying to myself “I love my job, I love my job, I love my job.” Yeah, right!

By the way, I just love our news media. Hillary was in town last nite. No, that’s not it. According to channel 8, the FREE tickets went on “sale”, Saturday. Can someone tell me how the heck you would “sell” free tickets? Doesn’t anyone proofread this stuff before it goes on the air? Oh, the free tickets “sold” out, btw...OY!

Did you know Sunday was Grandparents Day? No, we didn’t either. We just celebrated them on Mother’s or Father’s day. Ryan and Erin took Ama to Mimi’s on Sunday and we tagged along. It helped that we had a gift card, whoopee! Man, they are good though. DH had the pancakes (HUGE!) and I had the crab and avocado omelet (also huge). That place has such good food.

I got all my biopsies back. Everything came back “mild”, so now we just watch and see, and come back in January for a check-up. The moral of the story: ALWAYS USE SUNSCREEN? How many of us just used the ole’ baby oil in the summer time when we were kids? Yeah, me too. And I guess I’m paying for it now.

Sounds like Hoe-Down was a blast! I’m sad I missed it. Everyone did such a great job. Finances suck, don’t they! Speaking of which, I gotta get the car in tomorrow. Let’s hope it’s nothing too serious.

Well, back to my cubicle now...have a great week!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Another week...

I’m tired. I’ve been tired all week. Might be something with my meds that are off. I go back to the dr. in a few weeks, so we’ll see.

We kept busy all weekend. DH and I went over to Ryan’s Saturday night to watch football. There was a good crowd there. Ryan is the best cook, and his ribs are awesome. Yum! Clemson lost pretty bad unfortunately. Hey, but how about them Gators! 56-10, woohoo!!! Look out Miami!

We also spent most of the weekend cleaning house for the draft yesterday. We had about 10 people over and everybody brought food. Good wings, and sandwiches. We bought pizza. I made brownies. I was going to make Stacy’s Key Lime Bars, but forgot the pudding. Oh, well, next time. Mike made these stuffed hotdogs with cheese and jalapeƱos. They were so good! But it wore me out.

I just wanted to rest yesterday, but it was DH’s grandfather’s birthday. We were supposed to go over to FIL’s to celebrate both grandparents birthdays, but his grandfather is in the hospital again. They think it is his kidneys, so he may have to go on the dialysis machine. So, we just went over for a few hours and had dinner. I also played Monopoly Jr, with the kids. Never too early to learn, DH says. LOL! Then we came home and went to bed. I’m bushed! Oh, and I got signed up for Creepover yesterday, too, YAY me!!!!

Also last week, a dear friend of mine had to bury her husband at 46. That’s just way too young. It was very sad, and surreal. Cancer is a bitch, let me tell you.

I get paid on Friday, thank goodness. My car is doing a Kip, and my A/C is acting up. It takes about 45 minutes to cool off, and when it finally does it’s cool air, but not cold. That’s not cool (pardon the pun!)

So here’s for a good week. Let’s hope I can stay awake for it.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Olympic musings

Well, the Olympics came to a close last nite. I am proud to say that I watched quite a bit of it. I figured I’d share with you my observations.

1) Is the Canadian Synchronized Swimming duo trying to channel Queen Elizabeth I? You be the judge.
2) Memo to the Croatian Water Polo team: Those porno moustaches, just make you look like Ron Jeremy. (link)
3) Oh, yeah, those Chinese gymnasts are 16. Uh, and I’m turning 21!!!!
4) And I think I see some boobies on the Chinese “men’s” diving team. Egads! It’s East Germany, but in reverse!
5) What’s up with Brazil and nobody having any last names? Pele was one thing, he was a legend, there’s only one of him. But I think there are more than 1 Sheilla, Paula and Mari in the world. How does the IOC let them get away with that? And the Norwegian Beach Volleyball team wanted to use first names only too, but the IOC nixed it. Uh, yeah, there’s only one Inge and Ingrid in all of Norway.
6) Everyone loves Michael Phelps. And I do, too, don’t get me wrong. But my boy is Ryan Lochte. Dude, he’s a Gator, what’s not to love.
7) And three cheers for all of the “old-timers” who showed those kids whose boss. In addition to Dara Torres who’s 41 (another former Gator, I might add), how about Ian Millar the 61 year old Equestrian who won a medal for Canada or 32 year old Laura Wilkinson diving against girls half her age. If it not had been for her injury she probably would have beaten them too. But my favorite was the 33 year-old Romanian who medaled on the vault for Germany. She went to Germany to help fight her son’s Leukemia. A great story.
8) Speaking of gymnastics, since when did they stop having ties in gymnastics? What a gyp that was!!!
9) And speaking of ties, does anyone know why there were all these ties for Bronze in wrestling? It seems like there were two bronzes in several events, but I don’t know why.
10) And lastly, the poor sport award goes to...Well, there’s a tie (again!): The Swedish wrestler who threw his bronze medal on the floor in a temper tantrum OR the Cuban judo participant who got mad and (along with his coach) beat up the official. They both are now banned for life. Gee, ya think?

Friday, August 22, 2008

some Savannah pics...

First, I found pics of the house that the wedding party was using. This was such a cool party house. The website is here, if you want to check it out.







Well here's where we were "supposed" to eat lunch at on Sunday. Boo...hiss...That's a major dissapointment, so who know's when we'll ever be back there. Oh well, moving on.









Here is the view from River Street, and the bridge. Lots of neat little places there, some pubs, some shops etc. Definately a place to waste time in.



This is the famous waving lady statute. Legend has it her husband sailed off and never returned. But every day for 40 years she stood and waved the flag so he could see her when he came back, but he never did. (Our tour bus driver said this was pretty much a story and it wasn't really 40 years. But it sounded good.)


I'll leave you with some of the architecture in the downtown near all the squares. Just lovely. Savannah is the oldest city in GA, btw, founded in the 1700's and some of these places date back to there.


Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Gorgeous...



We stayed on Tybee Island in GA this weekend, and it was a great place. Here is the historic lighthouse that is on the island (at sunset). Isn't it beautiful. I definately would go there again.

We stayed down near the pier. (BTW, I would NOT recommend staying at the Howard Johnson's. Ick!) As you can see they are real serious about hurricane preparation.
We ate at this place here, right across from the Lighthouse, Friday nite. I think it was called North Beach Club, or North Beach Bar or something. Cool place. They had a really rockin' band playing. They were good. DH had a burger, and I had the crabcake sandwich. Very tasty.
The wedding went off without a hitch, despite the best efforts of the bride and groom, LOL! Knowing them like we do, we did not know what to expect. And there was even a brief time on Friday where we wondered if there would be a wedding. But it was beautiful, as you can see here.


And here is the lovely couple, Jeff and Jennifer. They were (somewhat) well behaved, LOL!


Much drinking and debauchery was had by all. haha! Some of the bridal party and their girlfriends/wives/etc, all rented a big house to stay in. 7 bedrooms, 5 1/2 baths, about 100 yards from the beach. Would make a nice scrapbooking retreat if anyone is so inclined.
Sunday, we were supposed to eat at The Lady and Sons (Paula Deen's place). I must have the rottenest luck. There was a gas explosion in Downtown Savannah on Friday, and it cut the power to that section of town, so it was closed!!! What a huge disappointment that was.
Well, I'll post some Savannah pictures tomorrow. Back to work.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Another week begins

Kind of a sad weekend around the B. household, unfortunately. We found out yesterday that DH’s Aunt Violet passed away Sunday morning. She is dh’s grandfather’s sister-in-law. A nice, sweet lady. She was in an assisted living facility, and they put her to bed on Saturday nite. When they went to check on her Sunday morning, she was gone. So she passed in her sleep. I guess if you are going to go, that’s the way to do it.

Of course, DH’s uncle is so full of tact. We’re in the middle of a kid’s birthday party, when he blurts out, “Hey, did you hear about Aunt Violet?” Um...no? “Well, she’s dead.” Well, isn’t that special. :eyeroll:

Sometimes, I can be so over this bunch. Take my MIL. Yesterday was his grandmother’s birthday. When he talked to her a few weeks ago, it was assumed we were going to do something together. Then, when the kids’ party invitation came in the mail, DH is all freaked out, because it’s the same day as Ama’s birthday. I said, hey don’t worry about, just call your mom, and see if she can schedule something another day. Oh, no, can’t do that, it has to be Sunday. Okay, fine, just tell them to do it a little later on Sunday. Oh, no, can’t do that, we’ll just have to leave the party. Okay, fine, do what you want.

So, we don’t hear anything from MIL all week. DH tries to call her on Friday. Can’t get through to her. (Their voice mail is not set-up for some reason). Come to find out yesterday, that MIL and her DH took Ama out...ON SATURDAY. Didn’t ask us, didn’t invite us, DIDN”T EVEN TELL US! (And they took her to LeeRoy Selmon’s, which made DH even more upset!) So, we just did our own thing, and went by Ama’s on Sunday after the party, and brought her, her gift and visited for a while. What can you do? There are just some things that are out of our control. You just shrug it off and move on.

Then on Sunday, Isaac Hayes died. Now that was a bummer. Probably one of the best soul artists of our time. We got to see him about 10 years ago at Ruth Eckerd Hall. It was a great show, albeit short. (Only an hour and a half and no encores). But he was an awesome entertainer.

And then, with Bernie Mac dying on Saturday, another great talent, cut way too short. But here’s something I bet you didn’t know...Bernie Mac, Isaac Hayes and Samuel L. Jackson just finished filming a movie that is due for release later this year, called Soul Men. I don’t know about you, but I sure wouldn’t want to be Samuel L. Jackson this weekend. Holy crap!

Friday, August 8, 2008

The weekend is here


Good Morning! Hey, I got this from Kip. My blog is Brilliant, LOL! So, I award this to all my blogger friends, if you don’t have one already. Whee!

Got to tell you a funny story from my nephew. Out of the mouths of babes. First, some background. When DH was little, his grandparents took him up to Louisiana to visit family. According to DH’s grandparents, they were driving across the Panhandle up near Perry, late at nite, when some huge creature crawled across the road. DH’s grandparents swear it was some sort of Bigfoot. (DH has no recollection of this, and swears it didn’t happen.)

Well, Faxon goes up to DH’s grandfather and says “Papa, my dad says you saw a Bigfoot.”
Papa: “Well, yes, I did”
Faxon: “Yeah, Dad says it was because you were drinking beer too much.”

Oh my gosh, the things that kid comes up with. He made me a cute little Sponge Bob picture, too, but it accidently got thrown away. Oh well. The girls are having their birthday party Saturday at the skating rink, so I’ll see if he’ll draw me another one then.

Skating rink? Do people still do that anymore? I had no idea. This one’s on Armenia. Trust me, I will not be skating. I’ve only skated a few times in my whole life, and at my age, and er, um, stature, I’m not about to try again now. Haha!

Anyone watching the Olympics starting tonite. I will be, it should be fun. I just hope everything goes okay, no trouble. I’m just pulling for our guys to win big.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Back to reality...

Well, time to get back to the salt mines. Oh, it’s so hard. But, here I am, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed.

The weekend wasn’t too bad. By Saturday afternoon, the sun was out and shining. And we had a whole day of sun on Sunday. The rest of the time we just ate and sat out on our balcony watching the waves.

Thursday we tried to go to the new Bubba Gump’s that opened up at John’s Pass. When we got there, at around 5:30, it was already a 90 minute wait. As we’ve already paid $5(!) to park, we decided instead to try the Friendly Fisherman next door. We got in fairly quickly, but then it took forever to get served. And then the food was horrible. Mine was over-cooked, dh’s steak was grizzly and the “surf” of his surf and turf was four little shrimp that wouldn’t even feed my cats.

We walked around John’s Pass for a while. It has become such a tourist trap, not the little kitschy place that it used to be. DH found some frozen custard for $6(!), and then we went back home.

Friday we met up with Ryan and had dinner at LeeRoy Selmon’s. Way better than Thursday nite!!! I had some fried green tomatoes for an appetizer, (in honor of Linda and the crew), and some Sweet Heat fried chicken. That stuff is so good, I love the sauce. I need to find the recipe, somewhere. Afterwards, we went Green Iguana to catch the Rays game, and had a few drinks, and then back home.

We spend the rest of the weekend just chilling. I read a lot. I think I read about 15 magazines. I’m almost caught up, but I have to leave some for Savannah next weekend. All in all, it was very relaxing. DH still has his cold though. He says he feels better today, but he’s still coughing a lot.

I wish we could just chill out this weekend, but we’ve got the girls’ birthday party on Sunday. I’m thinking they must be having it early, as school starts next week, but it’s putting crimp on my budget, that’s for sure. Too many birthdays all at once, right after vacation, and then the wedding on top of that. OY! Ah, well, we’ll survive, we always do.

Well, back to getting some work done. My email box was pretty light, believe it or not. So hopefully, the rest of the week will go smooth.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

One more day...

'til we hit the beach. I've been busy getting every thing together, and getting my desk cleaned off over here. (some things fall low on the totem pole when you work 40+ hours a week, with a 2-hour commute on top of that).
I'm bummed about the weather, I think it's going to be a crap shoot, rain wise. Oh well, at least we're away, that's the most important part, right?

I got to spend some time with the girls on Saturday at Kathy L.'s house. We cooked out, had some snacks, and margarita's, and just had fun. Really loved that. Thanks to Kathy for having us.

Gotta show you this pirate ship thing I bought for the kitties. It was on sale at Target. I got it home, and it was in about 50 million pieces! I almost returned it, but I persavered! haha! The thing turned out to be huge, I had no idea. As you can see, Miles is doing his best Jack Sparrow imitation.
DH brought out his duffle bag last nite, and Miles has been laying next to it. He knows were leaving. I think he gets separation anxiety when we are gone.
So, DH got his Bucs season tickets in the mail this week. You've got to check out the packaging they put it in. (They could have saved the increase in ticket prices and just sent them in a plain envelope, but I digress). It is pretty cool packaging, we plan on keeping it:


It's this box, it almost looks like a game box. Then you open it up:


It looks like a game board, or something. Then you lift up the field, and theres a little well, where the tickets go. It's pretty darn neat. I don't know where we're going to put it, but hey, who cares, it's just cool, that's all.

Well, hopefully my day will go quick, but it never does when it's the last one before vacation. Let's hope I can get everything done today. (I'm on the right track, so far!) And pray for no more rain! :)

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Wednesday

Hump Day Hump Day Hump Day!

It’s been a crappy week I must say. Not a lot of good news around here.

To start to week, one of our Hilltop Girls, Karen lost her husband over the weekend. He was the same age as me, 37, so that was really heart breaking. I’ve known Karen a long time, from back in the old Florida Scrapper days, and we’ve been table mates several times. I wish there was something I could say to her and her family to make the pain go away, but I know it can’t. I can only keep her in my thoughts, and I hope she knows that all of her Hilltop family is there is she needs it.

I also found out that someone I knows husband has Pancreatic Cancer. I don’t want to say who, because I found out through 3rd hand information, and I’m not sure if it’s something that’s public knowledge right now. I just know that the outlook is grim. Another young life...(He’s in his early 40’s).

And lastly, my cubicle mate, Camille’s husband goes in for surgery tomorrow for spots on his lungs. He had Colon Cancer a few years ago, and they are not sure if this is a reoccurrence or something different. Afterwards, he will go through Chemo, and hopefully that will be the end of it. We will find out tomorrow.

I really do hope things come in threes, as they say. I don’t know if we can hear any more bad news. What do they say; whatever doesn’t kill us makes us stronger? Yeah, we’ll see about that.

What do you make of this Caylee Anthony story? How do you just lose your kid for 5 weeks and not tell anyone? I have a bad feeling mom killed her. What a lovely piece of work she is, let me tell you. So, so sad. Why do people like this have children in the first place?

And Estelle Getty died yesterday. I love the Golden Girls, and Sophia was my favorite. I watched it all the time when it was on, and I still catch a rerun now and then. Well, enough sadness for the day, let’s hope this week gets better.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Saturday Morning...

Well, here we are again, it's the weekend! YAY! My weekend will be pretty low key.

Yesterday, I went to the doctor and had three moles removed off my back. What fun, right? NOT! The doc tells me they are pretty mild, and I shouldn't lose sleep over them. It's more precautionary. He thinks they should just come off now before they develop into something, and of course, they were sent off to be biopsied, to make sure.

I also have two on my stomach that I have to go back for in a few weeks. He said one of those looked 50/50. Those aren't reassuring odds, are they? Again, he wasn't overly concerned, especially since I don't have any family history. (Well, at least as far as I know).

What's aggravating, is those two on my stomach I showed the NP when I was there last year. I told the dr. that, but he didn't seem concerned. "Sonya (the NP) is very thorough, and I sign off on all her charts, so I'm sure she didn't miss anything". SIGH! He also said that these things change in a year, so it's no surprise. (Well to you maybe, but it is to me! Esp. when I've been coming in for my yearly check like I'm supposed to!)

Oh well, that's what you get for being pasty and growing up in Florida, and being a water lover, to boot.

We're back to square one on our tile project for the house. The estimate from Flooring America came in way over budget. DH wants to go to Lowes, since they did our bathrooms, and get an estimate from them, so they will probably do that on Sunday. In the meantime, he's going to the Rays game tonite with his buddy Patrick (Simo's dh), and I'm chilling at home, doing laundry, and probably cleaning up the scrap room. (It looks like a bomb went off in there, since I got back from the birthday crop. Poor Angie!) So, I'll have enough to keep occupied, this weekend.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

It's a Really Big Day, Today!!!

For two of my favorite people. (Yes, you are all MY people, LOL!)

Big Birthday wishes to Miss Linda, the glue that holds us all together in Hilltop Land!!! You are the awesome-ist! We love you! I hope you get spoiled rotten!!!
And another Big Birthday wish to my "special" people, Barb, who is probably in a plane somewhere headed to Chicago and CHA. I know the girls will make sure you have a wonderful day!
As promised here are just a few pics from Saturday...

Here's me just getting to the dressing room, and getting started. Yes, I look like hell there, but I was comfortable, LOL!

Here's Mike our vocal coach, and Gloria, our pianist for the show. Gloria is a great musician, she could make a funeral march sound good. And Mike is just an overall good guy. He really worked with us, and we came so far with him. In addition to Music Manager, he's also the head man in charge at the church where we are rehearsing, until they get a permanent pastor, so he works hard 24/7.


Here's John, our director, with Heidi, one of the soloists. Heidi is my new girl crush, btw. Haha! And she's a suishi person like me, gotta love that. John is the man who put this whole thing together. Not only did he have a dream and a vision of what he wanted this to be, he believed in us, and inspired us to see it in ourselves. He is an amazing person, and he and his partner Linda worked so hard for this to become reality, and we love them for it.

And here are some backstage pics, getting ready. We're all ready to go and shine at this point:


Monday, July 14, 2008

A Really Big Shooooeeee...

I am so tired, but in a good way. This was an exhausting weekend, but it was well, well worth it.

The concert was a huge success! Everything went off without a hitch, and John, our director, and Mike our vocal coach, were so proud of us. It was a standing ovation at the end, and apparently that’s the first time that had ever happened with any of the other groups’ premiere. John said “if you want to know how well you did, well, just look at the audience, that says it all!”

The day started off early, at around 12:30, where we got all our stuff, and got our dressing rooms and everything. Then it was more of “hurry up and wait” as the crew decided that was a good time for them to take a break. So, we all sat around and chatted with each other, and the time did go by fast, as did the whole day.

At 2:00, we did a run through with the band. That was the first time we had played with the band, and boy did it sound different. It really livened everyone up, and we were ready to go. After a dinner break, and time to get into our uniforms, we took the stage at 7:00.

Everyone sounded awesome. The crowd was great, you couldn’t have asked for a better audience. DH was there, with his mom and a friend. Elle and Bob were there too. It was a great turnout.

Of course, with everything, it can’t go off without a little drama. My MIL’s ex apparently showed up and sat about 3 rows behind them. Unbeknownst to me, his sister is in our group, and the whole family had turned out. So, MIL and her friend left a little bit after the half. Oh, well, their loss, for the finale was wonderful!!!

BIG THANKS to Bob and Elle for making the trip out, it meant a lot to me that you guys were there, and I am so glad you guys enjoyed yourselves.

I know Dianne took alot of pictures, and she's going to send me the link, so as soon as I get it, I will post some here. Tonight is the cast party, and then a break until September, where we start rehearsing for Candlelight at Epcot over Thanksgiving weekend. Then we’re back at TBPAC on March 15th. (BTW, tickets for Phantom went on sale yesterday for November, anyone interested?)

I’ll be busy the next few months, though, the tile guy comes today to measure out our kitchen. Then I plan on going by Sherwin Williams the next few days to get paint for the kitchen and laundry room. Our beach trip starts on the 31st (plus our anniversary!) and then we’ll be in Savannah in August for Jeff’s wedding. I may do some painting this weekend, but I think for the most part, I’ll be catching up on sleep, LOL!

Monday, July 7, 2008

How was your weekend?

Hope everyone had a great 3-day weekend. We had an interesting weekend. Wish it were longer, that’s for sure.

4th of July was nice. We bbq’d, had ribs and chicken, and other things. There is a family down the street that came over, basically handed DH some raw chicken and said, here, cook this. Okaayyyyy.... They also made this taco dip thing that I think was not cooked right, or left out too long or something, because it tore up my tummy. That put me out for a little while, but I came back to watch some fireworks.

That was interesting, too, to say the least. Our neighbor bought over $500 worth of fireworks, and DH commented that he must have connections, because this wasn’t your run-of-the-mill stuff that you get from the tent on the corner.

Well, bright boy decided to stack one of the mortar round boxes on top of an empty one. So, when they lighted the box turned over, and fired right into the crowd. Luckily, he was able to kick the box away before there was more damage. No one was hurt seriously, just one little boy freaked out, as the thing went right under his chair. The guy felt bad, for sure, and I’ll bet he’ll never do something like that again. Never a dull moment around here, isn’t there?

We went to the Rays game with our neighbor Steve and his son, Daniel. That was pretty good. We won, of course. 9-2. YAY!!!! We sat in right field next to the Rays tank, and that was cool, as you could see them all swim by. Not bad seats, but it’s a little bit of a tight squeeze, (esp. when the guy next to you probably weighs close to 300 lbs!) So, I got out for a while and just wandered around the dome, soaking it all in. I took a couple of pics, but not very many, because dummy me forgot my memory card. Darn!

And Steve is, well, how do I say it, obsessed with his car. (And it’s only a Nissan.) We had to park at the very far end of the parking lot, next to the entrance, so we didn’t have to wait in traffic (read: we walked a mile!) And the car had to be parked next to a curve, as close to the curve as possible, so the car in the next stall doesn’t cause any dings. Uh, yeah, okay, whatever you say. I was so tired when I got home yesterday, and just collapsed. I will probably do more of the same tonite.

It’s going to be a big week, as our big show is Saturday. Can’t wait. (Still lots of tickets available, if you’re interested, just let me know.) But we have rehearsal both Tuesday and Thursday this week, and Saturday will be a long day, as we start at noon with all the staging and everything.

So, I’ll be a busy beaver once again.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Recovering...

Another week is going by. You’d think it would be a quick one, what with being off on Friday and all. But it’s not. It’s just dragging by.

I’m still recovering from the weekend. It takes me a few days to catch up on sleep and a few more days to get my stuff put away.

I must say that the Birthday Crop was a huge success!! Linda did her usual great job as always. Lots of fun and laughs and food. And as always I did lots of laughing and eating and not much cropping. I did get my Cupcake book finished, from Jules’s class, got a few pages in the boys’ album done, and started my clock, but that was about it. But, it was well, well worth it.

Got to catch up with the Ft. Lauderdale crew. Always a trip, they are. And Barb and Gerri-Anne. Barb does tell some heckuva stories. And Jill came in from NC, that’s always fun. Stacey and Michelle came up from Sarasota.

Let me tell you about Stacey, that girl can cook!!!! She made: Texas Sheet Cake, Brownies, Lemon Poundcake and these Key Lime bars which were to die for!!! All from scratch and enough to feed an army. Well done, Stacey!

And then my table buddies, Di, Kathy, Michele, Elle and Chalupa (who is recovering nicely from her spaying, I hear!) Ah, Chalupa, what a spoiled little thing she is. Gotta love it. But then Sunday, it was back home to reality. Sigh!

Ran by Ruban last nite, after much urging from DH who wanted pizza from the Q. If you didn’t know, they are doing their 40% off sale this week. I got a few stock up things. Got some of the new Heidi Grace, I love her. So cute. Oh, and so you guys know, who are going, I paid for the Think Pink crop in September, so I’m all set there.

But poor DH, no Q’s pizza for him. They are closed for now. One of the girls told me that the old owners bought it back and they will reopen soon. I know they said it wasn’t as good with the new couple who had it, but I still thought it was really good. So, I’m a little bummed, but it will be back soon, better than ever, I hope. So, I tried Gino’s on the other side of the street, the girls recommended.

The pizza was pretty good. Not as thick as Q’s, but still pretty tasty. The steak sandwich was only so/so. But the service was kind of sucky. I was obviously keeping the girl behind the counter from her important text messaging. And the one guy, who seemed to be the manager, just handed the pizza and turned around. No “Thank You”, No “Have a Nice Day”, not even a “Hey, it’s hot, be careful”. At least the Q’s couple were very sweet, and always so nice to people. Oh, well, welcome to the 21st century I guess.

Any big plans for the 4th? We’re heading over to Sam’s tonight to get some stuff for our BBQ. Here’s hoping it’s not too crowded.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Thursday...

Isn’t this the prettiest little baby? Okay, so I’m biased, as she is the offspring of my BFF!

Here are the boys. The blur is Stephan. This was the best picture I could get of him this weekend. I got to say he definitely is what I would call a “Strong-Willed” child. Man, that kid can throw some tantrums. His parents definitely have their hands full. They usually take the kids for walks in the evening. Well, Saturday night it was storming really bad, and we couldn’t go out. I swear that kid screamed for an hour. NOTHING and I do mean NOTHING consoled him. As a last resort we put the Wiggles on, and he calmed down slightly. Until Mom left to go take care of the baby. Then it started all over again. Oh, boy!
I did go to IKEA on Sunday. I gotta be honest, I almost didn’t. When I got there, the parking garage was full, and the line for the remote lot was wrapped all the way around the building. But not one to give up, I found a spot in the shopping center next door. But when I got inside, they were out of shopping carts, so that limited what I could carry in the bags, and out to the car, so I had to limit myself.

I got a few little things. A little clock and some candle holders for 99 cents. I got the wooden drawers, similar to Jayne’s, but with the long drawers, instead of the little bitty ones. Some magazine holders, for $4.99, those will come in handy. I found DH an album crate thing, for his LP’s. Some more of those mirrors that Diana made at Winter Retreat. And a few other odds and ins, I can’t remember. I must say, the place was overwhelming. I only did the bottom marketplace, I didn’t wander the show room, I was trying to keep it short. I can’t wait until we get our own!!

The birthday crop is Friday, and I’m shocked to say I am almost ready. Yes, me, the queen of procrastination packed most of my scrap stuff last night. All that’s left is my clothes, adult beverages, and my air mattress, which seems to have gone into hiding. YAY ME!

Friday, June 20, 2008

Is there anything better....

On a hot summer’s day than an ice cold IBC root beer, straight from the bottle. Hmm..mmm. What is it about glass, is it that it makes it a good cold conductor? Who knows. But wonderful Publix last week had them on their BOGO deal last week, so of course, I couldn’t resist. I actually like root beer better than Coke, but Coke has caffeine, so that is my “drug” of choice, so to speak. (Speaking of BOGO, Publix has Twizzlers on sale, get there now!!! MISS LINDA!!!)

So, today is the first day of summer. Only the first day??? What have we been having the last several weeks, a teaser? OY! It’s Hot, Damn Hot, Real Hot!!! Seriously, I’m soaking wet when I get home, from the heat. Incredible. I’m getting too old. LOL!

Well, today, I’m on my way down to SoFla, to see the baby. Awwwww...I can’t wait to meet her for the first time, I’m so excited. I left her gift at home like a dummy, though! (A pink Gator onsie), so I’ll have to mail it down to them when I get home.

I’m also planning an IKEA excursion on Sunday. Any must haves? (Wonder if they sell patio furniture..hmmm)

Here’s hoping for an uneventful end of the week. YAY!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Mornin' Folks!

Happy Father’s Day to all the fathers out there. Hope everyone had a good day. Sounds like it. We visited DH’s grandfather and had dinner with them, and then his dad stopped by while we were there, so it was a good day.

Dh’s uncle is taking the grandparents on a cruise the first of November. Dh’s dad and step-mom have decided to go to. You see where this is going, don’t you? Well, his uncle has a balcony all to himself, but says in order to do that, he had to pay two fares. I’ve never heard of that. Kip may have to refresh my memory, but I remember the first Hilltop cruise, she was by herself, and she paid a premium, but not double the fare, KWIM? So, I think he’s getting screwed, if they are making him pay for two.

He did offer the extra space to DH if he wanted to go, since it’s already paid for. DH is thinking about it, since it will probably be his grandparents’ last vacation. But, of course, where does that leave me? Probably at the dock, waiving good bye. Yeah, I know, but how can he turn something down if it’s free, ya know? If we could afford both to go, we would, but it’s just not in the budget now. (with all the things we need for the house, patio furniture, new tile, maybe a new microwave, paint of course.) It’s a different itinerary too; it goes to Grand Cayman and Cozumel, but also to Roatan, Honduras, and also to Belize, two places we’ve never been before. But, it will be tight quarters for the two of them, plus his dad will be there. I just don’t see that going down good!

In the meantime, I’ve been on a search for barstools for my lanai. I’m striking out everywhere, I just can’t find anything. I did find a set that wasn’t too bad at a place on Bearss. The cost? $672...A PIECE. No, not for the pair, a piece. Well, I laughed at the woman, and said I’d go elsewhere. She said, “well we have others”. In the $100-$200 range? Uh, no. Buh-Bye. Nothing at Sam’s Club either (although, I found a couple lounge chairs I may go back and get this week). I can’t be the only person who has an outdoor bar, can I? Where do people buy their chairs????

I caught Meet the Press yesterday morning, and saw the Tim Russert tribute. He seemed like such a fair, likeable guy. I feel so bad for his family, my heart goes out to him.

I also tried to watch the Tony Awards last night, as well as Ice Road Truckers. I fell asleep through both. Sigh! I did wake up on time, but I am still so exhausted. It’s so hard to get through the day.

Well, that’s the Monday report. Have a good week!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Step right up, get your tickets here!



I have order forms for Sing Live tickets, so get them while they’re hot!!! (Don't know why the colors are off on this, it was originally a JPEG)

The prices are $25 (mezzanine), $35 (orchestra) and $39 (front orchestra, I think). Here is a map of the stage, etc.

Our performance is July 12th at 7:00 pm. We’re doing a lot of cool stuff, including a 10 minute Wicked medley. I know some of the soloists, and man, they are good. Everyoine has been working so hard, and we have great directors. It’s going to be a good show, and you don’t want to miss it.

You can pay by check, cash, Visa or Mastercard. I’d like to take the orders all in together, so y’all can sit together, but if you don’t that’s fine, too. I can email you the form. You can also order on Ticketmaster, or the box office, if you are so inclined, but they will charge you surcharges.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Don't Look...Pity Party inside...

I know, you're thinking, what the heck are you doing up at 11:30? You dodo, you have to get up in 5 hours.

You know, it's funny how one thing leads to another in your train of thought. DH and I were watching Ax Men on History Channel. One of the guys names is Gustafson. I asked DH why everywhere else it's pronounced GUS-tafson, but it's Gus-TAF-son Farms. Which lead to dairy farms, and MacArthur Dairy. Who used to have cows on 441, who I drove by and loved to see when I was a little children...which lead to the fact that it was next to Lauderhill Mall, which lead me to a blog about shopping centers, specifically old ones, which haven't been remodeled in 30 years. Which lead people to leave comments about the Mall and surrounding areas, including the old Ground Round a few blocks away. I went to a birthday party for a classmate in 5th grade at the Ground Round.

It was the only birthday party I ever went to.

You see, I wasn't allowed to grow up and be a normal kid. Birthday parties were not allowed. When my grandmother grew up, they didn't have birthday parties. So she didn't see the fuss, so I didn't go to any. Oh, don't get me wrong, I was invited to all of them. Even though I was picked on, I think the parents felt sorry for me and wanted to make sure I was included.

There was always an excuse. "Well, we don't know so&so." I went to a small, private school, where everybody knew just about everybody. It wasn't hard to go up to someone and say "Hi, Joey's Mom, I'm Mary's Mom. I understand you're having a party, let's chat."

Or they lived to far away. I learned that anything more than 10 miles was "far away".

Or they had a pool. "Oh, my god, you might drown" Or a park "oh, my god, you might wander away and get kidnapped" (This was the 70's, well before the Adam Walsh story).

You get the picture.

I didn't have parties either. Oh, we celebrated birthdays. After dinner, we'd have cake and open presents, but it was always just my mom, step-dad and grandmother. Sometimes, not too often, if it was on a weekend, my step-mom might drop my sister off.

I did have a slumber party once. It was a disaster...fodder for another day's blog.

My sister had parties. She lived with our dad and her mom (My step-mom). I did go to a few of those. One was at the rec center across from my dad's house. Helicopter mom was there, watching my every move (I think I was 10 or 11). I bet my step-mom appreciated that.

She had a slumber party once. I think dad and step-mom stepped in and said she's staying and that's that. I don't know why they never did that for me more often. I think because they were afraid of my grandmother. And god forbid, my mother ever act like a parent and say "Hey, this is my kid, I'm in charge here".

And one year we went to a skating rink up in Palm Beach. I think my step-mom and aunt had helicopter mom distracted long enough so I could actually (GASP!) skate!!! Yeah, I never really skated. My dad and step-mom bought me a pair of skates for Christmas. But I never wore them outside the house. I would (GASP!!) fall down. I might twist an ankle, I might skin a knee. All heavens would explode if that happened. I never rode a bike either. Pretty much for the same reason.

Oh, I was oh-so-delicate (eyeroll). I had a hip condition (a condition which three different doctors said was a non-issue). I'd fall down and hurt something (Ever met a kid who didn't?) Sigh!

Yes, mom, so while you had your 20+ years of therapy, thanks for saving a little of it for your daughter. And sticking up for her once in a while. And letting her be a kid, for cryin' out loud, consequences be damned.

And such is my feeling sorry for myself tonight. Sigh!!!! Maybe now, I can get some sleep.