Monday, December 29, 2008

what did I miss?

I am alive.
Sure. I had the best of intentions of blogging about my tonsillectomy recovery.
I really did.

My surgery was on December 15, 2 weeks ago. I am STILL not fully recovered in a few ways.
I had to spend a night in the hospital, have had to deal with excruciating pain in my throat, ears, neck and stomach, a general inability to swallow without wanting to cry and I have had to go without eating much of anything.
I have found that fast food hamburgers are soft, generally taste the way they did before and go down fairly easy. I am sure that my waist line will really thank me for this one in the coming weeks.

But I have dropped 8 pounds so far and I have gotten tons of sleep. Even though it is sleep induced by a powerful narcotic I still consider it noteworthy sleep.

Now that I have gone through the worst part of recovering from this traumatic (no, I'm not being a drama queen, it is traumatic!) surgery I can say that if you know anyone over the age of 25 that is going to have this surgery....they are going to go through hell for 2-3 weeks. They will question why they even had the fucking surgery, when will their mouth stop being that nasty shade of popsicle blue and will I ever feel better again.
Today is my first day back at work and I was spent at 9:30am. Sad but true. Since I am still not eating a lot I am not able to store as much energy. I think I used all of my reserve energy to drive the 15 minutes into work today.

Anyways, it is behind me and I am getting better everyday. Even though my voice sometimes sounds like a pre-op tranny I am getting by just fine.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Happy Rex Manning Day!

Sorry about my absence but I have been out enjoying life to its fullest so that today wouldn't seem so terrible. I thoroughly enjoyed PF Changs on Saturday night followed by a great showing of Quantum of Solace. Simply exceptional.

Today will be terribly awful. Terribly amazing. And also terribly painful.

Today is tonsillectomy day.

Today is the day that I rid myself of tonsillitis, strep throat, ear pain, bronchitis and an overall discomfort in my throat. My tonsils have been rebelling for some time now. With an average of 8 bouts of illness each year, these little bastards have to go!
They recently heard me speaking of this glorious day and they decided to make their presence known to me. Their wish was to act as they would in the wild in order to scare off predators...expand their current size so that many could see how large and powerful they are.
They are unaware that I know better.

I am giving someone permission to yank my tongue out of my mouth, take a medical instrument and cut and cauterize these tonsils right out of my throat. Thus leaving large white scabs over my tonsils previous rental property that will proceed to fall off over the next 10ish days causing me an amazing amount of discomfort.

Fortunately I will never have to go through this again. Yes you do hear freak cases of tonsils growing back. Many dont know that the human body does have a few types of tissue that regenerate. Tonsils, liver and a few others...but mine will not be back you see, I plan to slip the surgeon a $20 to make sure he does a great job.
I will be rid of my constant illnesses, constant sore throats and I will regain many sick days as well.

Wish me well and I will emerge from my drugged sense of living in a few days to regale you with the joys of recovery.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Ready for it?

5+ weeks until two joyous events.

January 18, 9:00 pm
Big Love comes back with season 3.
Forget what happened? Look here for Q & A.

Whats going to happen with Alby in charge?
What will the community think now that the Henrickson family is 'out'?
Will they add a fourth?

January 21, 9:00 pm
Lost comes back with season 5.
Forgot what happened? Read this to get caught up on the members of Oceanic 815 that stayed on the island, those that left, the 'others', the freighter folk and everything else that happened during season 4.

Where did the island go?
Why is Jack hesitant to make a family with his own nephew?
Will they all make it back in time to save everyone on the island?

random nothings

1. 4 days left until the tonsillectomy. I am EXTREMELY nervous at this stage...and to think that I actually want this surgery. I am pushing for it. And I have been researching recovery tips online which has also given me some hideous facts about the process. Too hideous in fact, that I will not even post them here.

Just know that after Monday morning if you want to get ahold of me please use email or text.

2. The house is 100% decorated to the best of our abilities at this point. It is gorgeous. Our outside lights and our lighted tree sitting in the front window just scream Christmas to me. I love it!

3. Gifts have been 99% purchased. I think I have got them all finished, but there is always that one person who buys you something and you totally forgot about them on your list then you have to say 'I have your gift its just at the house, I totally forgot to grab it today', when what you really mean is 'Fuckity Fuck Fuck Fuck, I didnt even get you anything. You didnt even cross my mind when I was out shopping'.
The kids are getting some really cute and great things. Santa did a great job. Jeff is getting...yeah, right, like I am going to tell you what I got you!

4. I have been frantic at work most days to get all of my events mostly planned so that I dont receive phone calls and emails from work when I am recovering. I know that I will receive emails and calls...I am sure as shit not returning them! Anyone who thinks that I am going to leap out of bed after just having my throat cut open is a freakin psycho. I know it is going to happen though. Fuckers.

5. Lastly I would like to thank Jeff for being so supportive with this time leading up to my surgery. I have been throwing information out at him for a few weeks now and God bless him...he hasnt shown any sign of fault. God speed to you the next few weeks. We will both need it.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

thankful past Thanksgiving?

Lately I have been in one of those disgustingly happy moods where even if a rouge lighting bolt struck my car and fried it to little charred pieces I would be able to shrug it off and go on about my day. I guess it doesn't help that my car is a 1996 and recently hit 160K miles and has a chunk cut out of the grill because my hood stopped opening and the leather is starting to tear on my seat from not being conditioned enough (oops) and I have totally been eyeing a Nissan Murano and this would give me the push that I need to get rid of the oldie and get a sleek new car.

Let me re-phrase that. ...a sleek new-to-me car. I am not a new car buyer. I am a slightly used car buyer. I would rather save the couple thousand dollars that the car depreciates as soon as you purchase it and put it towards things I actually need.
Like tequila and pole dancing lessons.

Total necessities.

Even though I found out that Jeff is NOT getting me a new car for Christmas (ass) I have many, many reasons to be joyous in my daily life.

A car would make it much better though.

I have a warm house to go home to. Loving and caring people at home that are joyous to spend my time with. Plenty of food to eat, in fact too much as I see the scale decided to move me up 5 pounds. Turns out that it isn't the dryer.

I received this email from my uncle, I know that it has been going around, I even heard Paul Harvey reading it to me today - so it must be cool, right? Nothing is cooler than Paul Harvey.
The email is touching and reminds you to be thankful for the good and the bad things in your life. Yes it was a little corny and eh, but it has a great message.
Remember how blessed your life is.
Mine is truly a blessed life, even without a new-to-me car.

I Am Thankful...
* For the teenager who is not doing dishes but is watching TV, because that means he is at home and not on the streets.
* For the taxes I pay, because it means that I am employed.
* For the mess to clean after a party, because it means that I have been surrounded by friends. * For the clothes that fit a little too snug, because it means I have enough to eat.
* For my shadow that watches me work, because it means I am out in the sunshine.
* For a lawn that needs mowing, windows that need cleaning, and gutters that need fixing, because it means I have a home.
* For all the complaining I hear about the government, because it means that we have freedom of speech.
* For the parking spot I find at the far end of the parking lot, because it means I am capable of walking, and that I have been blessed with transportation.
* For my huge heating bill, because it means I am warm.
* For the lady behind me in my place of worship when she sings off key, because it means that I can hear.
* For the pile of laundry and ironing, because it means I have clothes to wear.
* For weariness and aching muscles at the end of the day, because it means I have been capable of working hard.
* For the alarm that goes off in the early morning hours, because it means that I am alive
* For too much e-mail, because it means I have friends who are thinking of me

Monday, December 1, 2008


seriously, when did I get so old that the days and weeks fly by at the speed of light? Yesterday I woke up and it was June, I blinked and all of a sudden it is December 1?
It is almost 2009?

This leaves me wondering what I have missed during the voyages during light speed...birthdays, anniversaries?

I guess it doesnt matter at this point. But seriously...days seem to fly by now...

small updates

Man, oh, man...a week sure flies by when you aren't paying attention, doesnt it?
The score card around here is very tame for the Thanksgiving weekend in the Schwartz household.

We managed to get through the entire weekend without a single family/holiday related issue.

Jeff and I are so ahead of the game at this point. We 99% finished shopping for the kids in our life and bought a whole bunch of goodies to decorate the house!

Sorry about my previous neglect in will get much better from here on out. Only 2 more weeks until my tonsils are removed and then Ill have all the time to sit in front of the computer I want. Especially since I wont be able to speak for a few days.
Sure, some have expressed joy over this but I fail to recognize it.

Monday, November 24, 2008

21 days

Three more freakin weeks of boot. Three more weeks of the ripping sound of velcro first thing in the morning. Three more weeks of hobbling along and fielding snickering and glares from others. Three more weeks of non matching footware. Three more weeks of walking like quasimoto.

My doctor gave my foot a thorough inspection last Friday morning and determined, after much screaming and yelling on my part, that my ligament had not fully healed.
After I freshened up my makeup in the little girls room because my makeup was streaky from the crying I had to resort to in order to make the doctor take his finger off of the sofuckinghugeandpainful lump still taking up residence on the side of my foot I left there hating the boot.

I am allowed to wean myself off of the boot over the next three weeks. At least this is good news. I will have full use of both of my feet for my tonsilectomy on December 15th.

Happy Monday to all...

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

96'n it

One of my favorite episodes of Frasier has Martin a bit peeved that the dryer keeps shrinking his pants around the waist line....Daphney sets him straight and tells him that he is just eating too much crap and is gaining weight. Forcing him to lay off the dryer...
The past 3 days I have noticed that the dryer started shrinking my clothing as well.

This is partly because I have had to wear the boot for the past 4 weeks and have not had the chance to exercise. Partly because the cooler weather is upon us and it is instinctive to eat a bit more. And most importantly because I have been sick and I have been eating everyfuckingthinginsight.

I did gather the courage last weekend to weigh myself and I did NOT like what I saw. And with my pants feeling a tiny bit snug it is time to take action.

*I am starting to track my Caloric intake each day.
*I am drinking lots of water instead of my steady stream of Diet Coke. I filled up my Nalgene at work with 32 oz. and I am going to drink that today while at work. They say you should drink 12 8 oz cups of water each day. That is a total of 96 oz. Seriously that is a fuck of a lot of water. I might as well get a cath put in so I dont have to get up from my desk every 5.7 minutes to pee. But since my Diet Coke counts towards this liquid total, I think Im in the clear. I am still going to drink Diet Coke because no one wants me to turn into amandathesupermegabitchofohio. I have you in mind, dont worry.
*I bought (some) healthier options at the grocery store last weekend
*I noticed how much crap there is to eat around my office so I am putting it in the common area in the suite so that everyone else eats it
*I am doing a better job at packing my lunch and making sure I eat a good breakfast
*Since I still have the boot this week I know that exercise wont be in my immediate future but it is in the works.

I am not stupid. I know that the holidays are coming up. I am that person that makes Christmas cookies every weekend. That randomly brings a loaf of fudge or pumpkin bread into work to share. I am going to attempt to cut back at the baking this year. Cut back on baking = cut back on schwartz's calorie intake.
Its not new math so it should be easily understood.

And seriously, I just got rid of all of my fat clothes....all of them! And I am not about to go out and buy all new sizes just because I have had one (or 17) too many packages of fruit snacks.
So this is it. D Day for my terrible eating.

Hell, if Martin can do it so can I.

Now I have to make a holiday baking list and curse out the dryer some more.

Monday, November 17, 2008

smiles all around

I seem to be all caught up with my DVR. This has not happened in quite some time you see. Typically it is bursting at the seems with hilarity, drama, and Oprah. Yeah...and some porn too.

We are down to under 28% and I know to some that is still probably pretty full. Not in our house. I do still have the season finale of LOST saved and it will not be deleted until the new season begins (January 21!) and honestly I think that the saved porn is taking up half of that space.
Not a porn person?
Then judge me if you must, think poorly of me, whatever you must do...but I really don't care because I am walking through each day with a smile...

I know we still have a few episodes of Planet Earth on there along with the Passport to Great Weekends with Samantha Brown we haven't watched and I know there are a couple Paranormal State episodes hanging in there. They just may have to take up permanent residence in there because some of them are months old with absolutely no agenda to be watched.

This only leaves one option - fill the DVR back up! Its a lot like having a credit card that you just took months to pay off and now it is at a $0 balance. Whats the first thing you want to do? Yeah, go shopping. The DVR is a lot like this, only its free, and you don't get anything for your time except diminished social skills, a larger ass and cavities from the candy and bag of chips you ate while watching The Biggest Loser. And I think the couch has a permanent dent from my ass now I am thinking of switching the cushions so I don't feel like the couch is crushing underneath me each time I back up my ass (*beep beep beep beep*) to sit.

The holiday season is the best time to fill up the DVR. There are so many cheesy Lifetime and Hallmark channel movies to watch it could be a full time job during the month of December. And not to forget the Christmas classics...Rudolph, Frosty, and the lesser knowns of 'A Merry Mirthworm Christmas' and 'The Trolls and the Christmas Express'.

I am going to have a hard time saving the majority of my Christmas/Holiday DVR's until after December 15th so i have something to watch after my tonsillectomy. Until then I am anxious to find the hokey movies and specials and trap them in the DVR for the foreseeable future.

What is your favorite 'never miss' holiday special or movie??

Friday, November 14, 2008

slice and cauterize

Today is a special little girls 5th birthday. She helped me make hamburger slider cookies for her to take into her pre-school class. You'll have to take my word on it that they were delicious and completely cute partly because I totally forgot to take a picture of the final product and mostly because the only remaining sliders were eaten promptly by Jeff and myself.

This is NOT my picture but this is what they looked like...

They were slider-tastic to say the least.
Why does it excite children (okay, lets be fair, adults too) to eat a food that tastes nothing like it looks? Who the hell knows, but they were tasty!

I will be MIA the week before Christmas for the most part. I am having my tonsils sliced out on December 15th. So I am pretty sure that i will be too drugged up to even consider blogging. Although since I cannot talk for the week or so after the surgery I think I may need to blog to have a way to express myself!

Reading the material online about an adult tonsillectomy scares the shit right out of me. These people use the most disgusting words to describe how they feel and look post-op. Eew. I was considering put up a picture of a great pair of tonsils for you all to look at but then I decide that was pretty gross and you would all run away and never come back.

As any girl born after 1980, I am happy that I will lose a bit of weight when I am only able to eat broth, Popsicles and drink water for a few days after the surgery. From the sounds of it I will be in immense pain but at least Ill be working towards a goal of losing 5 pounds. Sick, isn't it.

At least it is the holiday season so I can fill the DVR with holiday movies and watch them while I am recovering. The silver lining indeed.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

mad muppet love

Click here.

You won't be sorry.

Poor Fozzie Bear...forgetful as can be.

41 seems awful close

I received an email today stating that Christmas is 41 days away. Now, I have been in the holiday spirit for a few weeks now. Happily humming to Christmas tunes on the radio, finally putting the Halloween decorations away, raking gorgeous fall leaves and trying to decide when to start Christmas shopping.

Then it hit me, I have to go Christmas shopping. The thought excites me beyond belief. Yet another shock about Schwartz - I love to go shopping!

It is so hard each year. Who do you buy for? What is a good gift? What is an acceptable price range? I am always that person that spends $20 on my friend only to have them either not get me a gift (not a biggie) or get me a $100 gift. Thoroughly making me feel like a schmo.

What is your go-to gift for a friend or family member?
Do you ask them what they want - maybe spoiling any surprise?

But 41 days is seriously close. It is high time I start working up a Christmas list for the ones that I love.

I know that a certain someone reads my blog and I wanted to give this person a heads up on a few of the things that I am looking at this year...Ill post them as I find them in no particular order.
these can be found here and I wear a size 6.5........

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Hallelujah! Holy shit! Where's the Tylenol?

Halloween has come and gone.
The pumpkins on your front porch are molding and turning to mush.
Frankenstein has found his way back to the garage.

Fall is in full swing in NW Ohio. The grass is covered by the falling leaves. The air is not so much crisp as it has been in the 70's this week, but the air still smells like fall. Just a warmer, Indian summer kind of fall.

I hate it.

I want chilly fall days with the sun shining through the trees. I want to be able to wear my new fall clothing without the temperature spiking to new seasonal highs.

One thing, no matter the weather, that always puts me in the best of holiday moods is....Christmas music.

Yes, I am one of those people who watches Christmas movies all year. I can recite Chevy Chase's rant from Christmas Vacation with near perfection. And even though we have not celebrated Thanksgiving our local soft, adult type music radio station has started sneaking Christmas music into their play list for our listening pleasure. They are playing three Christmas songs at the top of each hour.

One thing that I have learned over the year is that you are 1 of 2 people. You can either listen to Christmas music before Thanksgiving or you can't.

I can.


I know. I probably will not change my radio station until after New Years has come and gone so that I don't miss any of my beloved music.

Near Thanksgiving the same station switched and plays 100% Christmas music until just after the New Year. I am in loooooooove with this station.

I don't even mind the nay-sayers with their, 'It isn't even Thanksgiving', 'Its too early for Christmas music'.

This music puts me in the best kind of suck it!
It reminds me that there are better days ahead. Even if your year didn't turn out the way you would have least there is another one right around the corner.

Ugh, it also reminds me that we need to decorate the house. If we were really smart we would use one of these 70 degree days to our advantage. But, no, we'll probably wait until it is 40 degrees outside, pitch black because it gets dark here now at 5:00 pm, and raining to hang lights and decorate the porch. Its just the way that it goes!

For those of you that are not ready to gear up for Thanksgiving here are a few shots from Carah's pre-school Halloween program where the kids all dressed up and sang us songs. It was absolutely adorable and I am so excited that I got to go!

Jeff and Carah (remember she was a pop star, ***cough, cough, Hannah Montana, cough***)

And another with Carah, Jeff and myself. Yeah, her hair has pink and black 'pop star' streaks in it. Badass.

I for one am totally geeked about the holiday season starting and i am already finding myself DVRing Christmas movies and shows on tv. So embrace the changing of the seasons and the coming of the holidays!

This reminds me of one of my favorite Story People prints:

Rules for a successful holiday:

1. Get together with the family

2. Relive old times

3. Get out before it blows

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

4 years of donkey

I keep meaning to post some of my 'pop star' pictures from Halloween but sadly I have been spending my evenings applying for jobs and glued to the television.

Yesterday was this little thing called the presidential election. Maybe you noticed?
Yeah right!
I hope you got out there and voted. And if you chose not to vote then at least you had a notion of who you would have voted for it if you got the itch to do so.

To those of you that voted for Obama I hope you were able to get some rest last night before having to go to work this morning. I couldnt even make it to his speech. Hell, it was after midnight!

To those of you that voted for McCain I hope you are able to see the good in Obama and what he wants to do for the country. In the words of my dad through an early morning voicemail, "well, I hope that since my taxes are going up that it will help to pay down the national debt. I think that Obama will bring change and I do hope it is the kind of change we need."

But no matter which side you root for, donkey or elephant, you have to realize that no matter who would have won history would have been made. I would have been more than happy about that either way.

The first African-American male has been elected president of the most powerful country in the world. It is just astounding that it took this long for this type of thing to happen. Eh, at least it happened.

But the most important thing is that IT IS ALL OVERWITH!!!

No more political talk at work.
No more McCain/Obama commercials on my TV and radio.
No more leaflets stuck to my door.
No more yard signs.

Breathe a sigh of relief...we have 4 more years of rest.

In other news....
As I mentioned before I am job hunting. The department that I work for at the U is just amazingly stupid. The boss is mean to me, rude to me, called me incompetent...I know that I have been wonderful at work and he has nothing against me. I really want to get a new job and
leave him high and dry. After my two weeks notice of course.

It is in the 70's here in Ohio...has been for three days now. Oh, and gas up here is still at $1.97 a gallon. What the hell is going on?

Oh well, I better get back to work or else the boss will have another reason to yell at me...political blogging.
Parting words: God Bless America!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Pop Star

This is what Carah is going to be for halloween this year.

Yes, it may be a Hannah Montana costume, but she insists she isnt going as Hannah, she is a Pop Star.
And lucky for all...the glittery microphone vomits silver glitter everywhere it goes leaving a trail to this little Pop Star.

I went as a lion when I was 4. Come to think of it my brother and I had matching lion costumes and we wore them for 2 or 3 years in a row. Hey, they fit still and money didnt grow on trees then either!
And everything thought we were sunflowers.
No *rrrar rrrarrrr* we are lions.

(we looked like sunflowers with tails)

Thursday again

Oh, today is Thursday...I was under the impression all day yesterday that it was Thursday.
Wrong. At least I am wearing a different outfit and I dont have to repeat yesterdays work.

Ugh, I feel like I just gained an extra day this week. I already had my Thursday workday. Its a bad rendidition of Groundhog Day. Only, Bill Murray isnt here to throw snowballs at children with me. When I do it alone I only get stares of shock from other adults. And since it hasnt snowed up here yet it makes it even less sense to compare my day to Groundhog Day. Whatever. Its Thursday, still...

At least tomorrow is Halloween. The one day it is socially acceptable to scare the living shit out of other people. We have decided not to hand out candy at our house (go ahead punks, TRY and egg our house) instead we are going to go out drinking! What is better than giving candy away for free?
Getting loaded! I know that the Bud Light Lime's are calling my name and begging me to try that Pumpkin Pie shot that costs an arm and a leg...Mmmmm, beer.

Something about Halloween makes me wish I had a dog to dress in clothes. They have yet to make German Shepherd size clothing so just picture this on the kind of dog you cannot drop kick accross your front yard...Yeah. But then I would have the urge to dress my dog in this kind of stuff too...

I do happily claim to be against dog dressing. Sadly, I think that this is only because they dont make clothing big enough for my style of dogs. Until that happens I will snarkily poke fun at dogs wearing booties to go outside and do their business.

Besides my obsessive need to order magazines I love to collect bags. All shapes and sizes of bags. Cheap. Expensive. Colorful. Plain. Flashy. All bags. I have a large Rubbermaid container in the garage with the bags in it. Now, I did purge the bag bin and cleared out half of it last April. I fear that I need to do it again. There are bags in there that I have forgotten I even have. And even though i know I DO NOT need another bag I always find myself drawn to them. Like this cutie from Old Navy.

But I dont need it.
I dont need it.
I dont need it.

I want it!

But I dont need it.

This weekend is Daylight Savings Time. Set your clocks back 1 hour when we go to bed on Saturday night. So we gain an hour of sleep. Bonus for everyone.

Are you someone who forgets and shows up to church an hour early? Or do you always remember? Thankfully cell phones do it themselves and so does the cable box. Modern science at work for us.

Growing up we were the family that showed up to church at the wrong time...depending on the time change for Daylight Savings Time. Late, early...we've done it all. But the Good Lord forgives that kind of thing, right?

I doubt my future dog will forgive me when I become rich and famous for inventing doggie dress up clothes and parading him around in them. But then Ill be rich enough to pay Bill Murray to come and throw snowballs at children with me...thus making my good friend Bananas the opportunity to have her way with someone from her Fab 5.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

The Captain will be really Peeved

In economic times such as these, we cannot joyfully spend our money on frivolous items.

No more lavish seaside vacations.
No more spending sprees at Bloomies, Nordstrom and Neimans.
No more of my Candlelight Suppers. Which everyone always looks forward to. I bet I could have gotten the Major to attend my next one...
We'll have to only take the yacht out 5 times next year to save on gas money and paying the crew. They will be forced to take second jobs in seafood restaurants, on shrimping boats with the Bubba Gump Shrimp Company and perform themed children's birthday parties.

Alas, I will be forced to simply drool over the beauties I found today at Uncommon Goods.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

my fall wish

This time of year always makes me want to move to New York City. I have always heard that fall in NYC is splendid in more ways than one and I would love to experience everything the city has to offer.

I have visited NYC for part of a day when my sister lived in Connecticut. It was not the most joyous experience. I did get to wander (at a very fast pace so we didn't miss our reservation my sister set up) through Central Park and take in the sights of the city. It was all on my sisters schedule and she didn't give a hoot what we wanted to see. Next time I visit that will all change.

A park and city that produces images as beautiful as these is definitely a place that I want to at least visit.

New York, New York.....

Friday, October 24, 2008

2 rides and 7 miles later

The boot. Ah, the boot.

I already have a love/hate relationship with the boot.

I love that when I wear it I can walk without crutches or with only 1 crutch.
I love how much more mobile I am with it.

I hate that whenever I have to ice it at night it takes 19 minutes to unstrap the sucker. Seriously there are 6 or 7 straps. Talk about bondage.
I hate that I have to double crutch it when I dont wear the boot or hop on one foot like a deformed kangaroo.
I hate how it makes me walk like quasimodo.

What I really hate is that I have four more weeks of this.

I guess I am surprising people by how upbeat I am about the entire ordeal. I am not upset at it or embarassed by it, well, maybe I am a little embarassed since I did it to myself...but I am basically very happy that it wasnt worse than it is.

Thinking back to happier, non crippled times...Jeff and I visited Cedar Point last weekend. Cedar Point is the best location for fun in the universe. I am sure of it.
We met my absolute best friend and her family up there. It was a night that we will never forget.
We walked, we rode a ride, we walked, we stopped and talked, we walked, rode a ride, and walked and walked and walked! We decided to eat...location #1 had a 95 minute wait. Screw that, location #2 was closed. And location #3, which was a 4 mile walk to get to, 3 hour wait. Who the fuck waits 3 hours to eat at a TGI Fridays? So by the time our blood pressure returned to near normal levels we realized we could still catch our name being called at location #1!
We scurried back over to find that they upped our wait from 95 minutes to 125 minutes. Just when we were contemplating eating a small patch of our shirt sleeves they said we could be seated. Oh yeah.
Food has never tasted as good!

It was a fabulous time with my bestest and I look forward to many adventures next summer because we are getting Cedar Point season passes!
Hopefully my physical therapy works wonders after I am de-booted, I think I could potentially scare children during Hallo-weekends with my quasimodo impression.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

sexy boots and earthquakes go hand in hand

It just so happens there was a centralized earthquake on the University campus yesterday causing me to trip and fall.

Yeah, it was some earthquake.

You arent buying it. I can see the look on your face.

"Earthquakes are not centralized to one small location"

Apparently someone didnt sleep through geology and earth science in high school.

But I did still trip and fall outside of my office building yesterday. What did I trip on? Could have been a piece of lint...string...a gust of wind perhaps....

Yeah, my heel got caught in my cuffed work pants and *boom* down I went like a ton of bricks.

So after an ER visit and an orthopaedic surgeon visit it was concluded that I tore the ligaments on the top of my foot where they connect to the bone. I have, I GET to wear this beauty for the next four weeks.

Jealous much?

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Im down, but not out

Tonsilitis. again.

It is crippling me. I hate it. I have aches and pains, a fever and a general sense of chards of glass taking up residence in my throat. It really is quite delightful.

I think that this marks the 5th time this year. It is also the 2nd time in 6 weeks.
I am planning to call my ENT to schedule surgery. It needs to happen in the worst way.

Think of all of the pain free days I will have after these little buggers are ripped out of my throat!

A girl can dream...

Monday, October 13, 2008

marketing strategy of the decade

Ive been too busy to think straight the past few weeks so here are some of my random thoughts for this Monday.

------For years the residents of this chunk of Ohio have heard radio and seen television commercials about Sonic.
This has baffled us as we do not have a Sonic within an hours drive of Toledo (the big city, ya'll).

After years of Sonic taunting us with their half priced drink specials in the afternoons and .99 cent mini banana splits (which of course are no longer .99 cents, bastards) they have built us our very own Sonic. And to top it off it is within 2 miles of my house.

This was either the most well-planned and thought out marketing strategy on their part to make us drool for their food and drinks for the better part of a decade or a collasal waste of marketing dollars for the Sonic nearest that thought that people in Toledo would drive an hour to the Sonic for half priced drinks. I choose #1. Ill be optimistic about it. Their food is good and their drinks divine. If only I didnt work from 2pm to 4pm daily I would get a Lime real fruit slush everyday.

We have only been there twice now but it is quickly becoming one of my favorite 'I dont feel like cooking dinner tonight' places to go. It is a bit pricey but that may be because we are still in the mode of 'its new so we have to try a BUNCH of things to see if we like them'.

Their onion rings are killer.

------I worked all day on Saturday taking alumni, friends of the U, U trustees (read: big $$$) and my bosses boss (read: best behavior on the bus while I speak into a microphone) up to the University of Toledo vs University of Michigan football game. We had a pre-game party with charred black hamburgers, funky hot dogs and no beer. It was just to die for.

It was a gorgeous fall day. The air smelled of cheap beer and hot dogs. The homeless men begged for our empty cans, drunk fans yelled obsenities and I was going into the Big House for free. Ah, who doesnt love tailgates on game day!
These people in Ann Arbor make a killing though. It is $40 for a car to park where our pre-game party was held. In Toledo we expect a dinner out and a quickie for $40. We have it so good we dont even know how good we have it.

Who ever thought that Toledo would actually win this game? Not many, Ill tell you that! They did though. Congrats to Toledo for beating the worst (sorry) Michigan team in four decades. Definitely somethign to hold onto. Um...or something like that.
Yes, mad props to Toledo for being the first MAC school to beat Michigan. That is something for the record books. But I wouldnt go around flashing that fact for all to hear because Ill remind you again...they are the worst Michigan team in four decades. Michigan, for those that live under a rock in the amazon, are the winningest team in college football. They are Gods among men. They are the wolverines.

------Obama is in town today so this puts Toledo in the national news again. Ohio becomes the center of the political world every 4 years. Who doesnt love a swing state??

------We bought pumpkins yesterday and I realized that Christmas decorations are already out in stores. It is October...someone alert the media. October is apparently the time we have to start thinking Christmas. Wow.

------Either way I think that I am going to go to Sonic tomorrow and get another slush. Then shop for some Christmas lights for the front of the house. Its never too early I guess.

Friday, October 10, 2008

It's a G thing

Last night was the flag raising at Joe Louis Arena. The Detroit Red Wings were the 2007-2008 Stanley Cup Champs.
This is quite symbolic I was told and it is also quite the event in Hockey Town.

So while I let my love watch the official start to the Red Wings' schedule for 2008 I did a few me things around the house.

I applied for a couple of jobs, picked up a bit and then settled next to him on the couch with a stack of magazines. You'll remember my obsession to subscribing to magazines. I do read them all and I love to get them but last night was the stack of magazines I typically save until last to read. They are the fitness magazines. Womens Health, SELF, Shape, Fitness. Don't get me wrong. They are fantastic magazines. But seeing as I really dont work out or eat my best, these magazines are kind of lost on me at the moment. But I still read them and act as if I am going to do the 100 squats needed daily to keep my ass from falling to my ankles. 'Ooh, look honey. 17 ways to eat healthier.' It is all lost on me currently. It didnt help that we had just ate a mountain of greasy food from Sonic.

I found a rogue Marie Claire in the pile and lunged for that first, anything to keep me from reminding myself that my body fat % is well above normal. And even this magazine wasnt doing it for me until.............I found two perfume 'sample' pages for Harajuku Lovers perfumes 'G' and 'Baby'. I think that 'Baby' smells like feet and ass personally, but to each their own. But I found a new love in 'G'.

As much as you can love a scent rubbed from the pages of a magazine onto your wrist, this is how much I love 'G'. The main reason for my love is the coconut scent that lingers. It is heavenly.

I rubbed all the scent I could find from that page and then proceeded to smell my wrist all evening. Every 60 seconds I would invite my love to 'smell my wrist', 'smell my wrist', 'smell my wrist'. It finally came to the point where I asked him in bed and he said 'I already know what it smells like!' I think he had enough of the smelling. But I have since decided that I need to go out and purchase 'G'.

Oh and the Red Wings lost...which is rough because J told me that the Wings needed to make a strong start to the season. Only 82 more games to make it up now. Good luck Red Wings.
I wonder what time Sephora opens to I can go shopping...

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

when did that happen?

So I guess I have been out of it.

DSW has opened at our lovely mall and I didnt even know it!
Yes, I knew they were building it and nearing completion...but its open!

I perused the store on my lunch break today and I am happy about the store but not estatic. Good selection but not amazing.

Either way it deserves repeat visits as shoes make the world go round.
Happy shoe shopping!

alive and well

It'll tell you how busy I have been lately to say that I forgot completely about the blogging world. That I had one, that I liked to read them, and that I have been completely too busy to even think about getting on the internet.

Last weekend was Homecoming at the U and might I say that it was not all they hyped it up to me to be. Yes, they were long and busy days but there was not the general sense of drunken college days revisited chaos I was warned of.
I did get to drive a golf cart around for the better part of a day. So that was enough to make it all worth it.

After working 60+ hours the last three to four weeks of my life I am looking forward to a little family time. My family has been horribly neglected over the month of September and I have some quality time to put in.

I am back. Back in many ways and I am pledging to you all to begin posting hilarity on a regular basis.
If nothing else, the busiest of days teach you to really appreciate the days you get to leave work on time.

Friday, September 26, 2008

when love turns to hate...then back to love

When listing the greatest inventions of our modern age many list the microwave, the refrigerator, the garage door opener, the automatic car starter, the motion picture, with that comes the television, the radio....and the list is possibly endless. One mans crap is another mans greatest invention.

One of my favorites is the DVR. Others feel that this further promotes the boob tube. We do not have a satellite, TiVo or anything else used to capture my beloved shows...we have the cable companies DVR box. It is a fabulous invention but it is also the knockoff equivalent of the TiVo.
It is amazing that we can record two shows at once...all while still watching another DVR! How do they do that? I dont care just make sure its there when I want it!

I order the DVR to record approximately a million shows a week. Seriously, I dont know the true number but if I see a show I may be slightly interested in, I tape it. Why not. Its not as if it costs any more so I tape it all. Then randomly delete most of it wondering why I thought it would be fun to tape Air Bud. (delete) Where did this episode of Dynasty come from? (delete) Why is there an old Intervention on here? (delete) Didnt we watch this Paranormal State already? (delete)

I am generally happy with DVR. I order it to tape. It tapes. Job well done.

I have come to hate certain tv shows for feeling the need to end at 10:01 instead of 10:00. What did we gain from that extra minute? More commercials you say? No thank you!
But that extra minute fucks up my DVR night as I discovered last Fall tv season. There was two recordings going on from about 9:00pm to 10:00pm, then one starting from 10:00pm to 11:00pm. But it wasn't as simple as it seems because both of the 9:00pm shows decided to end each week at 10:02 or 10:03. So this causes my DVR to NOT record the 10:00pm show! Making me stay up until 10:02 just so I can hit the record button on my DVR. A job that I thought it was supposed to do on its own! Gah!

This would all be made much easier if the DVR had a setting where you could start to record a show 4 minutes into the show...or stop recording a show 4 minutes before the end.

The only problem with this is that I am either saying 'what happened in the beginning? Why are they in California? Where did they get that gun?' or 'what happened at the end of the show, did she die? Did they re-attach his arm? Is she still a drunk? Is Luca coming back ever?"
This opens up a world of questions. All of which would be much easier if shows ended on time and the DVR was more responsive to my requests.

But at least I can tape shows where boob jobs are standard, where ambulance crashes are the norm and where fat men marry beautiful, smart women.

In a world without the DVR I think we would all have to pay more attention to our jobs, families, chores and lives in general. (delete)

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

why do they call them Spring Rolls?

Each year when my birthday rolls around I have these grand illusions of what the day will be like.
I envision the mice and birds from Cinderella waking me up with a plate of pancakes with freshly squeezed orange juice. I happily enjoy them in bed while they select the best 'no they don't make your butt look fat' pants with a great top that shows off my new hair color.

I didn't wake up with birds and mice, nor have I gotten my hair colored. There were no pancakes to be had.

After a certain age you don't expect your birthdays to be as splendid as your 6th birthday you had at McDonald's where they gave you an inflatable Ronald McDonald that stands at 3 feet tall that you and your brother used to marry off to Kid Sister to make My Buddy angry.
Or for your 7th, 8th and 9th birthdays when you took your entire class to Ohio Skate and attempted to show off your backwards skating skills and *hope* that someone would ask you to skate during the couples skate (nope).

You expect to do adult things on your birthday. Work. Make dinner. Change diapers. Run errands. There isn't a get out of work/life free card just because its your birthday. The milk doesn't buy it self because your mother gave birth to you.

My 27th birthday was already high on the list of worst birthdays ever, simply because I was getting older. This year started off decent. I got my car fixed, had 2 doctors appointments and my dear mother even offered to bring us Chinese food so I didn't have to cook. Score! Free Chinese - always great.
We enjoyed our dinner and after a birthday romp in the sheets I decided to splurge on another veggie spring roll. Worst Idea EVER. This spring roll splurge was the downfall of my weekend.

Food Poisoning.

See what eating your vegetables gets you? I was laid up darn near the entire weekend with stomach flu like symptoms. Happy freakin Birthday.

Luckily for me I like to splurge on myself to make myself feel better. Take my birthday for example...around every September 12th I find that it is perfectly acceptable to buy things for myself just because its my birthday.

Godiva chocolate? SURE, its my birthday....
New makeup at Sephora? SURE, its my birthday...
Yankee Candles? SURE, its my birthday...(and I totally had a buy 2 get 1 FREE coupon that would have expired, rendering it useless to me)
Nice bottle of Merlot? SURE, its my birthday...

Yeah...I get like this around Christmas too (okay, all of the holidays!).
Its Christmas, Ill buy all new decorations for the house. I
ts Thanksgiving, I want a new pie pan.
Its all the little things that make me happy I guess.

Either way...I will not be eating Chinese food for some time and I already have a small list of things to *look at* because Halloween is just around the corner!

Ah, at least my inflatable Ronald McDonald and Kid Sister have lasted for 12 years. It did break My Buddy's heart but true love conquers all.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

half read books

The following article was written for Chronicle of Higher Education. It is a great article that is engaging the whole way through, enjoy...

The Pleasure of Half-Read Books

I've stopped reading books all the way through.

This happened gradually, and I don't blame myself. I blame others.

First, I blame bookstores. The bookstore nearest to our house is named Books-A-Million, the country's third-largest retail bookseller. The intent of Books-A-Million is to overwhelm you. A million books. I become a book zombie, like Homer Simpson in a doughnut shop: I must have books. Give me books. More books. In addition, the store, like other book chains, has a cafe where you can relax with coffee and pastries that are a step up from doughnuts. You can page through books, although you can never actually sit for hours and read the whole book. I have been tempted to try, but there is only so much coffee one can consume at $3.50 a cup. In any case, I generally read enough so it doesn't seem worth spending $27.95 to read the final 259 pages.

Second, I blame the Internet. The modus operandi of most Web sites, whether online booksellers or research sites, is to tempt you with a chapter and then cut you off and demand payment. I find it difficult to whip out my credit card at those moments.

Third, I blame my wife, Barbara, who has the uncanny ability to fall asleep minutes into watching a film, wake up the second it is over, and then accurately critique it, pointing out nuances that I, who have remained awake, missed. I can't help thinking that if I fall asleep clutching a book to my chest, I will wake up knowing the book intuitively. I not only don't have to read the last half of it, I don't have to read any of it. However, it just doesn't work that way.

Fourth, I blame Books on Tape — actually, books on CD's. The nature of Books on Tape runs counter to actually reading an entire book. Books on Tape are usually abridged, which produces the psychological impression that the books should have been edited in the first place. On the other hand, is there anything in the world more daunting than a Book on Tape that hasn't been edited and runs for 27 and a half hours? Who's listening to that?

So there's lots of blame to go around.

But if you were to force me to accept responsibility for having given up on reading books to the end, I would trace my habit back to finishing my doctorate in contemporary literature years ago. I realized then that except for books that I might teach or write about, I never had to finish another book unless I wanted to. I wasn't going to be tested on any book for the rest of my life. I was no longer competing to finish self-imposed reading lists with fellow graduate students. And I already had read more books by the age of 29 than most people read in a lifetime.

But it took me a while to stop reading certain books completely. For example, colleagues had the annoying habit of publishing books that I felt obliged to finish. And when my novel, Sticks, was published (still available on Amazon, if you're interested in half a good novel), I expected them to reciprocate and finish my book.

Today I probably finish about half the books I start. Do I finish more nonfiction than fiction? More genre books, like science fiction, or more serious, literary books? How many books do I put down because I don't like them or they aren't very good? If I pay $27.95 for a book, am I more motivated to finish it than if a neighbor lends a copy to me?

One way to answer those questions is to look at the books that I have read and half-read lately.
The books that I half-read: Vineland, by Thomas Pynchon; Boom!, by Tom Brokaw; China Road, by Rob Gifford; The Plot Against America, by Philip Roth; and The Historian, by Elizabeth Kostova.

The books that I finished: Against the Day, by Thomas Pynchon; Team of Rivals, by Doris Kearns Goodwin; The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime, by Mark Haddon; The Thief at the End of the World, by Joe Jackson; and Protect and Defend, by Vince Flynn.
Obviously the odd author in this mix is Pynchon. Reading all 1,085 pages of his 2006 novel Against the Day became a quest and an obsession. Every day for months I read a few pages. No wonder that after I finished it and picked up Pynchon's 1990 novel, Vineland, which is much shorter and easier, I couldn't finish it. I had had enough of Pynchon — perhaps forever.
The other books are more conventional. Many were best sellers or recommended by friends. Some were impulse purchases. One, The Thief at the End of the World, which is about the 19th-century discovery of rubber, was written by a friend.

The two lists show some peculiarities that are not just my own. For example, I cannot read Roth. I've tried most of his books, but I can't get through them. This is obviously my problem and not the author's. But over the years, I've found that most readers have at least one author whom they simply cannot read. Bellow. Morrison. Irving. Who knows why?

Another peculiarity is book length. One might assume that long books often become half-read books. But for me, length doesn't matter. In fact, three of the four longest books on my two lists — Against the Day, Team of Rivals, and The Thief at the End of the World — are all in my finished category. The long book that I didn't finish was The Historian. I think I left a young couple in the grips of Dracula, but I didn't care.

One book in my finished category is a genre book: Vince Flynn's political thriller, Protect and Defend. The assumption is that heavily plotted novels are more likely to be finished, since readers want to know what happens next. I do occasionally finish a book to find out the ending. I am amazed by people, including my wife, who read the ending and then go back and read the whole book anyway. When I asked her about this quirk, she explained that she reads the conclusion to determine if it is worth her time to finish the book. If the ending turns out to be something that she had already figured out, she quits reading. But if it is something that she hadn't expected, she keeps reading.

Two nonfiction books are on both my half-read and finished lists. I found Goodwin's massive tome about Lincoln's cabinet unexpectedly fascinating. However, I was indifferent to Brokaw's paean to the baby boomers, despite being a boomer myself.

Finally, I hate it when someone gives me a book and tells me I'll love it. That often leads to a half-read book, such as China Road.

Nevertheless, half-read books can be pleasurable. I almost never feel that I've wasted my time or intellect just because I don't make it all the way through a book. I can still meet an interesting character or visit an unusual locale. I might discover a topic I knew nothing about. Maybe I figure out that the subject matter or plot is worth only 150 pages instead of 300. Besides, half-read books have helped me chip away at that million-book inventory at Books-A-Million.

So don't despair if you have a half-read book taking up space on your desk. Don't feel guilty about not finishing it just because you are a professor. No one cares, and you shouldn't, either. Just move it over to the bottom shelf of your bookcase and find something new. You'll feel liberated, trust me.

William McMillen is chief of staff in the office of the president at the University of Toledo.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

point. click.


I would like to introduce you to my new friend.

It is the Nikon Coolpix L18.

It isnt some fancy over $150 camera.
It doesnt bake bread.
No. It didnt even come with some super cool camera bag.

It did, however, come with batteries. Oh yes my friend. Batteries.
Batteries that lasted about 23 minutes while playing with my new friend right after its purchase.
Bastard batteries.

Thankfully there are children in the house so that means we have an endless supply of batteries. People think that money makes the world go 'round.
Its batteries.

So I have taken a my new friend for a few photo ops and it is amazing.
For such a small, non-expensive, super cute camera it actually takes great pics.

Of course I had to test out the 'anti-shake' feature by taking a picture while moving the camera at the speed of light.
It worked. The picture was of the wall as it turns out (its hard to steer at the speed of light) but the wall wasnt blurred at all.

This little beauty will be my new friend for many years to come.
Or untilI drop her and break her.
Either way it was a match made in Japan.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Free Food

We have a retreat coming up for work. It is on a random Tuesday, during working hours, so we all will be forced to attend. And it is the entire department of Institutional Advancement. This is a lot of people that typically never converse on a daily basis. Okay, make that a weekly and maybe even monthly basis.

Most of them I will say hello to when passing in the hallway...then I turn to my fellow coworker and ask 'who was that again?'. Without fail I forget their name within moments.

They are luring us downtown to The Toledo Club with the promise of a free breakfast and lunch. They know exactly how to get us. The free food department. It seems that everyone around here uses food to lure us to celebrate something or work on something.

We often have free food in the Alumni office. For example we always celebrate a birthday in the office with a cake at our weekly meeting.

In September alone we have 4 birthdays. I am going to be starting on my winter fat suit early this year.

Two weeks ago it was free pizza to say farewell to a coworker. We all like said coworker. Not the issue. I dont really know that we would have rallied together and made her give us a farewell speech if there wasnt the promise of a free lunch from Gino's.

Either way, she thinks we love her unconditionally. When in reality it might have been the pizza.

For the afformentioned retreat we receive an email last week with the following request:

In an attempt to get to know everyone better and have a little fun in the process, we are going to have an activity at our retreat that I will need everyone’s assistance with. Please send me something special about yourself that people might be surprised to know (examples: I grow orchids as a hobby; Woody Hayes recruited me; I am a certified scuba diver; I am a state champion archer…..)

We will be reading these statements at the retreat and everyone will get a chance to guess who it is. I am going to keep these a secret so that I will be the only one with all the answers.
Thanks…and we want to hear from everyone

Wow, right?

This is quite obviously one of those office workers who just loves doing fun little 'getting to know you games' during meetings.
This kind of stuff makes me sick to my ass.

But this did get me thinking of what my statement is going to be.

**crickets chirping**

Yeah, I have no clue what to say.

I actually have a lot of interesting things about me that I could offer to the group, but I am not sure that they are PC for a department retreat.

What do you think they would think of these?

---I like to dig the lint that collects in my belly button each day and I am saving it all to knit a sweater.

---I wore a dress made entirely made of duct tape to my senior prom.

---I used to wear my jeans backwards just like Kriss Kross.

---I keep my vintage collection of slap bracelets on display in the family room.

---My cats are in my will.

---I clear my ears of wax buildup using a ballpoint pen, who needs to spend money on Q-tips?

(okay, I am not as weird as I let on, only a few of these are true)

(yeah, none of them are true)

But I still have no idea what to tell these people. One persons 'interesting' is another persons lame. I have a feeling this entire meeting will be 'interesting'. I am eagerly looking forward to it.

I will show up and eat their promised food. I can almost guarantee that I will still forget all of their names but I will remember what I ate. The power of food.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

its BIG all around

It is a random night at home...I'm sitting in my comfy clothes scanning the listing of shows on television tonight.

Nothing sparks my interest.

I go into the kitchen to grab a diet coke and a box of cookies (I'm a health nut). And Stephen King did tell me that diet pop absolves all of the calories in junk food.
I am busy testing his theory.

I glance at the tv from the kitchen to see if anything interesting has come up hasn't.


Did that just say polygamy?
I turn to channel xyz as soon as the dying batteries in the remote control will let me.

YES! It did say polygamy!

After this I am glued to the program and scan the channel to see if there is more coming up this week about polygamy.

You can also insert the phrase 'Families with 18 children' into these sentences instead and I would be equally amused for hours.

So when HBO came out with the series Big Love I was intrigued. But my household doesn't pay for HBO's services at this time so I hadn't ever seen an episode. I recently rented the first part of the first season and I was instantly hooked! I am onto the second part of the first season (don't even get me started on this fiasco).

For those who don't know what Big Love is:

Think having three wives is a dream come true? Find out how Bill Henrickson, a modern-day Utah polygamist who lives in suburban Salt Lake City balances his three wives, seven children, and a mounting avalanche of debt and demands.

I took the quiz yesterday to see which wife I would be. First wife, Barb, second wife, Nicki or third wife, Margene.

The quiz stated that I would be.......first wife, Barb! yeah!! This excited me (as much as being a numbered wife can excite a person) because she is in charge of the money distributed, schedule and she has an outside job.

I am contemplating ordering HBO for the run of the Big Love season when the third season starts. But first I plan on locking the doors, taking the phone off the hook and devouring the remainder of the first season and all of the second season between tonight and Friday. When I surface for daylight I will fill you in on who is doing what (we already know who is doing who...rimshot! Or should that be whom? Whatever.) and how much more my love for this illegal phenom has grown.

Don't get me wrong. I am not pro-polygamy by any means. Its just that watching this show and their fucked up ways has made my life feel oh so normal. Thank you Big Love, thank you.

Monday, August 25, 2008

you read good

I have been invited to join the book webpage goodreads. I have added a few of the books that I am currently reading and I can see what my friends on the site thought of the books they are reading as well. Since I know a schload of avid readers I thought that I would invite them to join me on this site and share the books you know and love. Or you can let us know what you are reading now or plan to read next.

I am already enthralled in the site and find myself looking through the books my friends have read to see what I am in the mood for.

I dont by any means consider myself a great reader.

My grandma, Pat, she is a fabulous reader. She can knock out a paperback in a short number of hours. Grandpa, Jim, watches FOXnews, and she reads. It has worked well for their marriage actually.

I do have a fondness for reading though, always have.

I was that kid in Jr. High that didnt know the popular songs on the radio because I was too busy reading in the car and at home to pay attention to the radio. I think I was one of the only Jr. High students that had successfully read the Lord of the Rings book (and understood it).

Reading is such a wonderful escape. It can transport you to the past, the future, different dimensions, economic backgrounds, continents and everywhere else imaginable.

Whether you enjoy reading the paper, magazines (ME!) or old fashioned books...give your brain a workout today, read something.

Or at very least turn the sound off on your tv so the closed captioning comes up. I guess that counts as reading too. Then you could at least combine two of my favorite things, tv and reading.
Yeah, it counts. Good for you.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Ode to my new BFF

I have a new Olympic favorite. We are new best friends, she just doesnt really know it yet. It could be because we have never and will probably never meet. But either way, we are BFF's until the end.

Shawn Johnson.

She is only 4'8'' but she has the most amazingly muscular body! She is fabulous on the balance beam...I cannot even begin to describe the precise moves she completes and the way in which she carries herself.

I will say that hers is what my body used to resemble (Hey, I can dream!) when I played soccer like it was my job. I am beyond envous of her strength. And she is such a cutie with a great attitude. I am rooting for Shawn to win a medal in the woman's individual all-around!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

the illusion of control

This has always been one of my favorite Story People stories.

If you hold on to the handle, she said, it's easier to maintain the illusion of control. But it's more fun if you just let the wind carry you.

So when I received an email saying that this story was one of four chosen to adorn their new line of tote bags, and since I have a bit of a bag fettish, I had to have it. Plus it was the blue bag and blue happens to be the best color in the world.

Here is the bag in all of its glory

There are 4 different colored bags each with a fabulous story. You can view them all here:

I have a few Story People prints and can only dream of affording or even placing a sculpture of theirs in my house someday. Brian Andreas is a genius. They also have a blog that you can view on my blog roll over here -------------------------------------------->>>>

Monday, August 11, 2008

blood brothers and morning breath

Ever get the feeling that tomorrow you are going to wake up and have aged 18 years overnight? Some mornings I wake up and feel as though I have.
After I roll out of bed I make my way to the bathroom to take care of the mornings' duties. First of which is to put my contacts in.

I hate wearing my glasses. Hate. My eyes are probably deprived of their much needed oxygen since I wear my contacts as long as humanly possible each day but ever since my glasses mysteriously broke (when I threw them against the wall...who knew that would break them?) they are utterly uncomfortable. One side sticks out further and the same side likes to pop off. But they are a tool to allow me to read in bed before I turn in to sleep. This is their only function and I refuse to buy a new pair at this junction.

Back on first glance in the mirror I assume that it is my glasses that are aging me visually in the mirror.
So the contacts go in.

Okay, so it wasnt the glasses...maybe it is just because my contacts went in with a painful sting and its before 7am and my eyes dont like the morning light so in retort they are putting up the picture of a blotchy face to get back at me.

Okay, so hopefully when I put my makeup on it will keep me from looking like the bride of Frankenstein any longer. I just hope that my MAC powder will cover the large black bags under my eyes. SIDE NOTE: How do I get rid of these wretched things?
It didnt. So lets just pray that wearing mascara, LOTS of mascara, will draw attention away from the sleep lines still on my face and the bags under my eyes and my newly forming crows feet. (aren't I too young for crows feet?)

There was an episode of A Different World where Dwayne and Whitley moved in together and Whitley would secretly get up before Dwayne and put makeup on and allow him to think that she looked fabulous all the time. It worked for awhile until he discovered what she was doing and told her how beautiful she was all the time, no matter the makeup.
While this is a great idea, what happens the one day I forget to get up early to look splended by the time my beloved gets up? He'll think I have the bubonic plague or malaria, rush me to a hospital only to find that my only problem is that I have morning breath and I still have toothpaste on my zit to attempt to dry it up.

This is the problem with living with someone else. They learn your little secrets.
After they learn them and commit them to memory you have to become blood brothers and pinky swear that they wont leave that room because if your other friends found that you still had to fall asleep with a night light on they may never let you forget it.

That reminds me, I have a mosquito bite scab I have to pick. There are a few more things I need to make sure are kept secret.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

the master of comedy himself, Stephen King?

I just read this article yesterday in my favorite magazine, Entertainment Weekly. It is my favorite due to my obsession with all things TV, movie and even book related. EW tells me what to watch each week, which movies are buzz worthy and who books are full of teenage vampire drama.

They just reformatted their magazine and the new format kicks ass. It even moved Stephen Kings column from the very last page to the near front of the magazine. Great job, Stephen. Great job.

Normally his articles are full of 6th degree of Star Wars talk or waxing poetic on the most recent book or movie releases.

But this week he became one of my favorite comedy writers. Comedy, that's right. I have also learned quite a bit from him in the past. Not crap, things that are actually usable in the real world.
Such as, I never expected Diet Coke (Diet Pepsi in his case) to have such profound effects on the human body and it was exciting to find out where movie theatre butter for popcorn comes from!
Read the article below and see our friend Stephen in a new light...sure it looks long, but trust me it is WELL worth the time.

Stephen King's Guide to Movie Snacks

For a magazine that prides itself on the many aspects of the movie business it covers, EW hasn't had much to say over the years concerning the important subject of snacks. Oh, an occasional piece about how much they cost, but few words on their culinary wonderfulness. This needs correcting, because, while some people eat snacks while they are at the movies, there are some who go to the movies so they can eat snacks. That would be me. So let me impart a few lessons years of snacking have taught me.
First, support your theater. Buy at the snack bar and damn the expense. You could probably sneak your own food in, but if you're caught, you'll be thrown out. As for bringing healthier snacks from home: Did you really hire a babysitter and drive six miles so you could snark cucumber slices half-drowned in buttermilk ranch out of a slimy plastic bag? Is that what you call living it up?
If you want to get healthy, there are places for that: They're called ''health clubs.'' And I find there's something giddy about tossing down $4.50 for a box of Gummi Bears or a bag of chocolate raisins. It makes me feel like a high roller, especially when the matinee ticket itself only costs 50 cents more.
I always start my order with the ritual drink — Diet Pepsi if possible, Coke Zero as a fallback, Diet Coke the court of last resort. A big diet cola sops up the calories and cholesterol contained in movie snack food just like a big old sponge soaks up water. This is a proven fact. One expert (me) believes a medium diet cola drink can lower your cholesterol by 20 points and absorb as much as one thousand empty calories. And if you say that's total crap, I would just point out I don't call it a ritual drink for nothing. Sometimes I add a strawberry smoothie with lots of whipped cream, but I'm always sure to take enough sips of my ritual drink to absolve me of those calories, too.

With my calorie-absorbent drink in hand, I can then safely order a large popcorn with extra butter. Of course it isn't really butter, it's some sort of mystery substance squeezed from the sweat glands of small animals, but I have developed such a taste for it over my years of filmgoing that the real stuff tastes wrong, somehow.
If the counter guy puts on the glandular butter substitute himself, I watch carefully to make sure he greases the middle of the bag as well as the top layer. If it's self-serve (at the beginning I didn't like this option, but now I do), I proceed to hammer on that red button until I have what I call a ''heavy bag.'' You know you have a heavy bag when the bottom starts to sag and ooze large drops of a yellow puslike substance before you even get into the theater. And don't forget the salt. Popcorn salt is a little strong for my taste (and it looks like powdered urine); I prefer plain table salt. Half a shaker is about right.
With a ''heavy bag,'' caution is a must. Don't put it on your lap; when the movie's over and the lights come up, people will think you wet your pants. Courtesy is also a must. Don't put it on the seat beside you, or the next person is going to sit on a seat that oozes. Not cool, bro.
My candy of choice is Junior Mints. And while I don't bring bootleg food into the movies, I do bring bootleg toothpicks. Then, as I relax in my seat, I take a toothpick and poke five or six Junior Mints onto it. It ends the dreaded Chocolate Hand, and it's also kind of fun to eat candy off a stick. I call them Mint-Kebabs.
And although it's a matter of personal choice, I myself don't eat movie meat (go on, snicker, I can take it). My motto is ''Never buy a hot dog that's been waiting in a foil Baggie under a heat lamp.'' For all you know, that stray dog could have been there since Revenge of the Sith. Nachos are good, but only if you get the reserve swimming pool of cheese sauce, because one is never enough.
Now that I think of it, the same could be said of snacks. But remember: Start with the ritual drink. After that, you're on your own.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Vegas: Where the overnight low is hotter than hell

I have just returned from Las Vegas for a 24 hour visit for work.
For work?
Oh yeah, for work. Thats one of the downfalls and perks...I get to travel to events put on by UT alums.

In telling people that I was headed to Sin City the most popular things people can say about Las Vegas are...

'What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas'
'Vegas, baby!'

Here's what I have to say about Vegas...
'Take your dry heat and shove it, Vegas style'

Whenever a mid-Westerner visits the dry, hot, deserty areas of the country they immediately consider the heat factor of said visit. We generally prepare to sweat a lot of go through at least 3 outfits a day in order to keep up the appearance that we dont sweat like pigs.
At least the women do.

Mid-Westerners are used to hot and humid summers, no doubt. Mid 80 degree days are the gold standard for many of us as 'typical summer'. We consider it a heat wave if it is over 90 degrees...and depending on the humidity, it could mean an inside day for many of us.

Those in the desert states love to pitch their weather to us in the fashion of 'But its a dry heat!'.
Dry heat my ass.
I will agree to a point. They do not have the humidity that we do. Nowhere near it.

But this so called dry heat made all of my undergarments delightfully moist for the entire evening. Have you ever worn a moist bra and underwear for 4ish hours?
Well, either way make a note of this: Don't do it. Uncomfortable isnt really the word for it.

This dry heat was so uncomfortable that it made sitting uncomfortable, it made standing uncomfortable and it even made concentrating difficult.

So to Vegas and the surrounding deserty areas....Take your dry heat and shove it, because 112 is 112 no matter the humidity.

My favorite part of the evening was when the game was over at 10:30pm and many alums commented on how much cooler it was. When I glanced at the temperature I noticed they were right!
It had dropped from 112 to...................99.
Wow. They sure proved me wrong.

On their behalf it did get down to about 95 for the overnight low.
Ill bet they needed a jacket to stave off the cold. Poor Vegas.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Viva Las Vegas and Snooty Artists

The rest of this week and through the weekend is a bear for me so I will not be around much.

Las Vegas for work Thursday and Friday...
Art on the Mall Saturday and Sunday...

But I will return on Monday inbetween naps.

In the meantime here is a certain amount of hilarity to entertain:

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

close your eyes and you won't see the mess

When you are a child you rarely look into your future.
There are the exceptions of

'I can't wait to be a policeman when I grow up'
'I can't wait until I am 16 so I can drive'
'I can't wait until I am 21 so I can drink'

There are some people who choose not to wait until they are 16 to drive...but then those people typically have to wait an additional year to get their license because they borrowed their parents car to do something utterly important that couldn't wait.

There are some people who choose not to wait until they are 21 to drink...they are called humans. We ALL drink before we are 21 and if you didn't, then you must be of the religion where drinking is prohibited or else live in a region of the world that doesn't have alcohol. Either way, there are a lot of DUI's and underage drinking issues...

Besides these visions of the future children rarely look forward and wish to never again have a summer off of work, they never wish to have their boss yell at them because they messed up the O'Neal case, to never again have the money for anything they want and they never wished to have exactly 1.3 hours a day of 'free time'.
Little do they know that this free time is typically spent cooking, doing dishes, taking out the trash, cutting the grass or hell, even eating. Free time as an adult is a complete luxury and the weekends don't even guarantee it anymore.

The weekends are no longer 2 full days of carelessness. They are now two full days of the shit that you couldn't get done during the week.

'Damn, couldn't make it to the grocery store this week...Ill just go this weekend'

'Didn't make it over to visit Aunt Milly...Ill just go this weekend'

'I have to paint the house...Ill just do it this weekend'

'Dinner with the parents...weekend'

But at this point your weekends are so jam packed with the stuff you couldn't fit into your week that your weekends are stressful and don't offer any free time at all. It takes a lot as an adult to set aside a day, a half day...hell, even a few hours to free time.

We are so pressured into thinking that the neighbors will call the lawn and garden police on us if the grass grows another 1/8 inch...better cut it right now.

What if someone glanced in my kitchen windows and noticed that I didn't vacuum this week? Dreadful, better do it right now.

I am under the impression that waiting another day wont kill anyone. Well, at least I hope it wont kill anyone. I have never heard of long grass or dirty carpet being the death of another person but there is a first time for everything I guess. And this may just be the procrastinator in me but at least I found some free time.

Who cares that there is a clump of cat hair on the carpet, the grass is up to my knees and the sheets should have been changed a week ago. I found time to watch a few dvr's or spend those precious few hours after work with the ones I love. And that's what really matters in life.

Monday, July 21, 2008

make it your damn self but please tip me

Saturday was the day to visit the Ann Arbor art fair...I have not been to Ann Arbor in years so it was great to walk around one of my favorite college towns.
What is the best thing to do at a large public event such as this?
The obvious answer would be to purchase artsy fartsy type things.

But the REAL answer is to stare at the freaks and geeks as they parade themselves around in public.

It was a day full of funnel cakes, frozen lemonade and walking. Lots and lots of walking.
Oh and we also had Mongolian BBQ for dinner (I thought it was Grill...but I now correct myself, it is BBQ).

Have you ever been?


Then you know that this place is RIDICULOUSLY overpriced.
I mean RI-DIC-U-LOUS-LY overpriced.
The meal consisted of:
- 2 servings of 'make it yourself because we dont really wait on you even though you still have to tip the waitress' stir fry ($12.99 each) this included meat, I believe the vegetarian option was maybe $10.99
- 3 draught beers ($6.00 ish each)
- 1 fruity margarita ($5.00 ish)
- 1 bottle domestic beer ($4.00)
- 1 crazy big dessert that didnt taste all that wonderful as the picture depicted it to be ($5.00)
plus tip and this meal cost $70.00.
For Stir Fry. For meat and veggies. Pitiful.
It was actually very good stir fry. And now that I think of it, I have myself to thank for that one. I chose wonderful veggies and meat to cook and I made a great sauce mixture of lemon, mongolian ginger and spicy something or another with some fresh rosemary sprinkled in. It was great...just not $12.99 for one bowl great.

Seriously people. For $70.00 I could have held a Hyacinth Bucket style Candlelight Supper for all of my friends in style...or at least gone out to dinner somewhere I have been DYING to go...Trotters Tavern. For the best steak on the planet. Naturally.

I am not a huge 'I want to make all my food myself in a restaurant, then pay them for it' person. If I wanted that I woudl simply eat at home. Either was a new eating experience and I have now learned how to make my stir fry from a buffet line.
Another item checked off my 'must do before 30' list.
Well, honestly I dont have a list...nor do I think I can even pretend that I would put this on there. But to each their own...

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Wednesday Joke Day

I was told this *gem* of a joke a few months back and every time I think of it I still chuckle.
I am not promising perfection, but it is a head scratcher.

Oh, I better preface this joke with a disclaimer...I was told this joke by a 5 year old. If I didnt tell you that I think that you'd have me committed, or at least barred from telling anymore jokes. At least it is kid friendly.

What has spots and likes to do the laundry?

can you think of anything??

My Aunt Cindy with chicken pox?

A Cheetah.

yes, my readers. A cheetah. This is the beauty that this wonderful 5 year old mind concocted that day.
The bitch of it is that I busted up laughing when he told me. I completely lost it. He was so worked up to tell the joke and it caught me off guard.
Seriously, I mean, who knew that cheetah's like to do laundry?
I never would have guessed a cheetah in a million guesses.

Whats your, amazingly hilarious joke?

Monday, June 30, 2008

better late than never

I was tagged by the legend herself, Bunny Mendelbaum, and even though I took my time to get around to it. I am answering it now.

The rules: Answer the following questions about yourself. At the end of the post you pass on the questions to 6 (or so) other bloggers and list their names. Then write them a comment telling them that they've been tagged and ask them to read your blog.

1. What did you do 10 years ago?
Summer of 1998...I was 16 and I had started a new job at Best Buy. I was making $6.00 per hour starting out and that was okay by me. It is amazing the amount of money you can get by on when you dont have any bills or rent! I just got over my first knee surgery and little did I know that I was on my way to a second within a few months. I never should have gone back to playing soccer so quickly!

2. Five items on your to-do list today:
- Visit my grandpa in the hospital
- Think of the remainder of Jeff's birthday gift (its tomorrow!)
- Dinner at Jeff's moms house
- Catch up on calls and emails
- Clean up my office. I think that a cyclone went through here last week. I need to organize.

3. Snacks I enjoy:
I am seriously entirely too intrigued by the Candy Bracket that Nikki and Marc did...I think I need to email her for said bracket. For scientific purposes only of course.
I enjoy marshmallow fluff and fruit snacks. I can eat an entire box of fruit snacks in 1 sitting. They are that good.

4. What would you do if you were a billionaire?
Take care of the family and close friends, thats a given. Buy a vacation house (or 5) and spend my days helping charities of my choice and traveling and enjoying life. Perhaps I would put out my own fruit snack, or buy a winery, or just shop a lot and eat amazing foods all the time (lets be realistic here).

5. Places I would live:
Seattle, Washington
Great Britain - can't decide where though
I guess the list is long and neverending.

6. Bloggers I am passing the challenge onto are:
Not Just Any Jen, I'm Not THAT pregnant, Hoping for a Miracle, Finding Life...

Thursday, June 26, 2008

he only has eyes for me...and Janet Reno

From reading my recent post of the Top 5 men that make my heart skip a beat my darling Jeff has composed a Top 5 list of his own.

He emailed it to me yesterday and I made the error of reading his list when I was drinking. I had to toss my keyboard aside to save it from the spray of Diet Coke that erupted from said list.

You'll see what I mean.

And this is why Jeff is my love...

(Oh, I will preface this by saying that my man has impeccable taste! And these are his captions)

Jeff's Top 5

It's hard to limit it to just 5, because so many celebrities catch my eye, I could never limit myself to just 5, but here is my best effort:

5. Sandra Bernhard - What a smile...she can burn me hard anyday.

4. Rhea Perlman - Hello you doing?

3. Camilla Parker-Bowles - Good enough for a prince, good enough for me...and then some...yum!

2. Melissa Rivers - Seeing her last night on tv brought back that tingle I had when she hosted those red carpet shows on E!

1. Janet Reno - total package. Brains...brawn and I hear she makes a mean apple dumpling.