Blog Patrol Counter

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Avery's bracelet look

Local fashionista alert:  someone is already learning to "style me pretty", and she's not even  two yet.  This is definitely NOT a good sign for her dad that she's already doin' the accessories deal with such confidence.  Note the bracelet on each arm.  I guess having a big sister does spur things along, though. 


Calling all artichoke lovers!  Tom Thumb has them right now for a dollar a piece, due, I'm sure, to the drought.  They are smaller than in previous years but who cares...I bought four yesterday and have them steaming away in the kitchen in my favorite All Clad knock off  Tramontina dutch oven.  I tossed in a bay leaf and some lemon, cut into quarters, after squeezing the juice in the water.  Why?  I just smells good and makes the flavor better to me, and because, well, I can.  Fred had never had an artichoke until he married me, so now that he's a fully fledged convert, I know they won't go to waste.  The first time I served him one was hilarious.  When he got down to the heart, I considered telling him to eat the furry part, but decided that was just way too mean.  When he cleaned off the heart and dipped a bite of the actual artichoke heart in the lemon butter, I knew he was a goner.  The leaves he was a little less thrilled over but that's OK.  They're there merely to tempt you to hang in there until you hit the heart anyway.  Dragging your teeth over the end part, dipped in the lemon butter sauce to get a tiny bite of that artichoke flavor, is a lot of work for what you get, but to me it's worth it. 

I just went to check on them and they are doing their thing, and the smell is perfect for a Sunday morning.  Part of me is thinking I might halve them, and grill them for just a minute or two, and serve them along side the pizzas tonight.  Or, I may remove the chokes, cut them into bite sized chunks, and put them on our pizzas.....oh, many choices, too many decisions.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Grilled Pizza

I just can't help myself....I am jonesing for pizza, and not just any old pizza either.  I want a homemade whole wheat crust, and maybe a Thai chicken one at that.  I just cranked out two recipes--one for the whole wheat crust and the other for all the Thai additions.  I'm trying to avoid white flour in hopes of being a tad more healthy, hence the whole wheat recipe.  I only need a couple more things (more like 5 but whatever--they're small) so I may get to crust making right after my coffee in the morning.  I can't coffee and make crust, since it takes me a little while to get my motor running these days.  Since tomorrow is supposed to be a mere 102, I might just cook my pizza outside, either on the grill or on the BGE.  Or...the pavement might work also.   The thought, though, of firing that egg up to 600 degrees just makes me wilt, so I may use the grill instead.  No way am I firing up the oven--not....on.... your... life.

I might even make several different kinds of mini pizzas, and see what we like best.  I think a pesto chicken pizza, with fresh grilled veggies could definitely do it for me, in addition to the Thai.  We may just have a DIY pizza bar.  I bought two different goat cheeses--one herbed, one plain, and prosciutto.  I have the chicken and pesto all ready, so now it's just the dough, and a few fresh veggies to chop, and I'm done.  Yum.

Friday, July 29, 2011

First ever Rangers game

Hud and his dad were invited to attend the Rangers game with friends, and this is the result: two guys hanging out and having a blast.  Between the nachos, cokes, hot dogs, peanuts, and Hud's first ever Rangers game, not to mention having his dad all to himself without any pesky little sisters around, I'm thinking this was an outing he won't soon forget.

As for Sis and Fin's play date, let's just say it was a non event.  Both gals acted like old matrons--there was no chasing, fighting, dawg wrastling, nada.  They were both total ladies and, frankly, I think a little bored.  Fin, however, did distinguish herself as the smartest damn dog I have ever known, when it came to her figuring out the doggie door.  She went out--just out--not in and out--before she totally go it.  When she was ready to go back inside, she walked over to the doggie door and looked back at me to see if I was going to hold the top part open for her, like I did the first time.  I told her she could do it herself this time, and she put her head down, and gently shoved it open, and walked inside.  I'm sorry, folks, but that made Sis and Wigman look like two total meat heads.  Dumb, German, meat heads. 

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Operation Sis and Fin

The experiment of Sis having a friend over continues, and Finley is barking at something outside.  Since Sis totally understands this, this could be a very uniting factor.  Sis isn't quite sure exactly what to do with Finley, since it's been a l-o-n-g time since she's had another dog around....she's whining ocassionally and Fin is trotting around the house.  So far, Sis has been a perfect hostess.  We'll see how this progresses.  Here's Fin.  Here's Fin and Sis a few minutes after meeting.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

I have lost my mind

The plans are made and I think she'll enjoy it-- I'm just not telling her until tomorrow.  I swore I'd never do this.... but I am.  Sis is having a friend over tomorrow to play.  I know....I've lost my mind but I'm still doing it, no matter what.  She's so bored and lonely I can't stand another minute of the "mopey's".  With Wig gone, she's just b-o-r-e-d.  It's too hot to play outside and I'm thinking a four legged friend is going to be right up her alley.

Hud, Had and Avery's dog, Finely, is coming over tomorrow and is the cutest little dog ever.  She's a white Malti-Poo and has more brains and personality than a lot of people I know.  I'd hoped to have her today but today is her Billie Bones day of grooming, which means tomorrow she'll be even cuter than she usually is, all clean and snipped.  I'm not sure Sis is going to share her toys with Fin but that's not a big worry--Fin probably wouldn't want them anyway.  What I can't wait to see is how Sis will teach Fin to use the doggie door.  As smart as Fin is, all it'll take is Sis shooting through it once, and Fin will be all over it.  It should be a hoot to watch.

I'm not worried about Sis being mean to Fin since she usually loves other dogs but I'm not going to leave them alone, in case Sis goes all psycho on Fin.  I am anticipating quite a bit of chasing and playing but if Sis turns all "mean girl" on Fin, that will be that.  I'm not playing dog referee.  Nuh, uh.

What I know today

Today I know:
1.  It takes more energy to be ugly than it does to be kind.
2.  Never burn a bridge you may need to crawl across someday.
3.  You will see your parents differently the minute you have your own children and they will never look as good to you, as they do then.
4.  God's job is taken.  Find your own.
5.  Do not worship the God of money.  There is no such thing.
6.  Just because you aren't famous doesn't mean you aren't a success.  And just because you are famous doesn't mean you are a success, either.
7.  No is a complete sentence no matter how many times you have to repeat it.
8.  Dogs and small children spread the same kind of love.
9.  Never underestimate the power of a simple kindness.
10.  Never underestimate the impact your willingness to help, could have on someone else.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Limeade.....a la diet

While this may not seem newsworthy to some, it might be to those gals who've been dieting as long as I have.  I figured out how Sonic makes their SF limeades and it'll rock your world.  And, yes, I do know " it'll " is not a recognized contraction but I like it, therefore it is.  Anywho, on to the limeade.  All you need is a can of Sprite zero, and several lime slices.  I keep my Sprite in the refrige so it's really cold, and then pour it over ice.  Slice up your lime, squeeze as many as you like, stir, and quaff!  You'll gulp it down in a heartbeat, so you may need two.  It's that good. Hey.....they're zero calories so you can do it.  Tell the diet police I said you could. Thirsty, now, aren't you?

The QE2? Sign me up

One of my favorite food bloggers has been on board the QE II for the last several days taking the Southampton to New York shuffle and adoring every second of it.  He lives in Paris with his gay lover and he is one of the most hilarious bloggers ever.  So far on his blog, he's featured Tea on board his transatlantic crossing that looked truly sublime, and more recently, he was able to tour the kitchen on board the ship.  He also discussed sitting on the deck of the ship, in a blustery, chilly North Atlantic wind, preparing to snooze beneath the wool blankets provided on each deck chair.  Food and cool air?  I'm in.  If you want to read him or even follow him, just google David Lebovitz blog and you'll find it.  He actually responds to people's comments and questions, so scroll down to the very bottom of his posts and read his suggestions for leaving a comment.  I almost fell out of my chair laughing and was sold after that.  He's also written several cookbooks since he is a trained pastry chef, if you are a collector like me. 

Now, I know I give Fred a lot of grief on here sometimes, but I need to give him a real pat on the back for last night's sprinkler repair.  Two of our large bushes at the back of the back yard were drooping, due to a NDE (near death experience) from lack of water.  I realized yesterday after running the sprinks to see if theirs was clogged, that indeed that was the problem.  Enter Fred.  He unscrewed the sprayer top to find it had a little stick in it (sounds nuts, doesn't it?), and while it's not doing a perfect job spraying now, it's spraying, and that's all I care about.  This morning both plants are all perky, hydrated, and no doubt looking forward to another day of crushing heat.  Well done, Fred.  Well done.

Lastly, does this bug you or is it just me?  Does it make you nuts to hear newscasters use incorrect English (verb tenses), and to read it in the newspaper?  I know my tenses aren't always correct and I could use some English 101 again, but TV and the written word?  I thought they were Journalism majors and as such, had to be able to use the King's English correctly.  Guess not.  Oh, well.....guess that just makes them human, just like me.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Pasta and Pinkberry

As I was leaving the gym yesterday, one of the check in gals asked me if I wanted anything from My Fit Foods.  I was thinking she one of those gnarly protein bars and was about to say NO.  She proceeded to unzip a little cooler and offered me any of the ready to hop straight into the microwave, meals.  I'm serious....visions of that for dinner vs coming up with something else, danced before my eyes, so I asked if I could have one for Fred, too.  She assured me that was fine and I must say the Turkey Pasta was outstanding!!  Probably a little too spicy for small people but the sun dried tomatoes and seasonings rocked my pasta deprived world.  It was a medium size container so there was plenty left over for lunch today and the total number of calories was 420, so divided by two, that wasn't too shabby.  Fred went to work out and came back with two also but one of his was some kind of chicken thing that I'm not so sure was a real score.  Stick with the turkey pasta and you won't be disappointed.

And while I'm on a food jag, (like when am I ever not on one) go to Pinkberry tonight for frozen yogurt.  Friday night I had a small of the chocolate/caramel swirl, with sea salt sprinkled on top, and alllllllll most left this planet.  Best thing ever for a hot, dry, Dallas evening.  In fact, you can eat a lot of it since that looks like all we have forecast for the rest of July and probably August. feel cooler already, don't ya?

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Container Store vs Williams-Sonoma..... hmmmmm

I'm feeling very accomplished this morning thanks to Fred's and Benji's help.  We've got the grooms men's gifts in the bag, and with that, I am sighing a huge sigh of relief.  You'd think this was the Royal wedding the way I sweat stuff, and for me, well, it IS, as one of my great friends reminded me.  The Rehearsal Dinner is my State Dinner at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. only mine is smaller, on the other side of the world, and we won't be needing Security, not that it's been known to work at the White House anyway. 

Yesterday, I made a run to the Container Store and while it took me awhile to get my idea for a gift wrap just right, I still did.  I swear...there are two stores that I am currently passionate about--so much so that I'd go to work for either of them, and just might apply.  One is obvious--I just mentioned it.  The other is Williams-Sonoma.  I love everything about both stores and the vibe in both is just so comfortable, customer service oriented, and fun.  Yeah, they both get busy but after working in a hospital, that's something I just take for granted.  Back to school at the CS?  I'd love it, and parents of college age kids having melt downs would be right up my alley.  Plus, I wouldn't have to make any decisions for them--just give them the options available and support whatever decision they make.  Shoot....that's nothing more than being a patient advocate.  I can do that.  I'm going to have to find out, though, if they make everyone train to do the Elfa.  I'd rather sizzle in the heat from a thousand burning suns, that have to figure out all of that.  Geometry and space planning is not my thing so that could be a deal breaker.  I could carry a tape measure and look like I know how, but just hand off to an Elfa "specialist".  See?.....that would work.

And at W-S?  I'd get to play with all the foodie toys and get a slammin' discount to boot.  Did you know they now have furniture at W-S, and it's fabulous, too?  And the best news of all is, I could walk to both of these if I wanted.  Bruce would love it if I went back to work and though I love my time here at home, it could be fun to investigate further.  We'll see.  Just another idea I have rattling around in my head.  If I don't make more a day, though, than my housekeeper, fagedaboudit. I don't care how fun it is.  They can both keep their damn aprons.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

2nd Anniversary

While today is the second anniversary of the scariest day of my life, bar none, I am steadfastly refusing to dwell on it.  Onward and upward.  It all turned out OK and for that I am w-a-y beyond grateful.  For those who don't know, two years ago today, Brian was in a horrendous motorcycle crash on Central Expy that easily could have killed him, but didn't.  Thank you, God!  Out of that came the most unbelievable gifts of people, Parkland, and love, I think we as a family have ever experienced.  I have a big old grin on my face as I type this, thinking back to all the hilarious people we got to know, and the angels that floated in and out of our lives. What looks like a disaster, is often really an opportunity in disguise.  So true.  No more motorcycles.  Now he has a Jeep.  The red one we're babysitting that currently doesn't run. I hope it NEVER does.  :)

Now, we need to discuss this drought because my trees, grass and bushes are all looking really thirsty no matter how much water they get.  And they're not getting a lot, given our last water bill.  We've got dropped leaves all over the front yard due to stressed trees, and these are trees that are ginormous and over 60 years old.  It's not even August and it looks like the Sahara out there.  I have a friend who is 100% Native American so maybe I need to get with him and see if he can give us some help here.  Maybe he can get his people dancing or something, because this just isn't funny at all.  We're all likely to go up in a big puff of smoke.

Lastly, I'm thrilled to report the scale finally budged and I currently weigh less than I have in close to a hundred years and while I know the actual number isn't important, it sure as hell is, on some level in my brain.
It's the jiggle factor that hasn't changed...sure there's less to jiggle but I think someone needs to invent the Lifestyle lift for the body.  Or maybe even body Velcro so you could just make things nice and tight vs saggy and jiggly, as you lose.  Sort of a Velcro nip tuck.  Nobody wants to have a 360--a total body lift--but I think something less invasive might really work.  I'll get on that right after I finish my coffee.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Ringing phones-nooooooooo

We've been getting a ton of random calls and computer generated ones, too, and I am way over it.  I've done all that no call list stuff, too, so now I'm taking matters into my own hands.  Since you can't answer and actually speak to a person, requesting to be taken off their list, I've developed a "back at ya" system of my own.  Now, when the phone rings and it's one of those calls, I click talk and then off, super fast.  It doesn't keep ringing and it doesn't hit call notes, and leave the message light flashing saying there's a message, 'cause there isn't one.  Yes, I could call block them but they'd just go get another number.  And call block costs me $$--not them.  So, I figure at some point there going to get really tired of me and give up.  Well....that's my hope anyway.  If a real person answered, I'd just get an air horn.  A few blasts in the old ear drum and that stuff would stop PDQ. (pretty damn quick)  I might even enjoy that.
Since I'm having a problem coming up with a neat groomsman's gift, I'm going to throw the door open here for suggestions.  I have a particular item in mind, but am not sure the guys could get them through Security, coming back, if they don't check a bag.  And, no, it's not a pellet gun, though that would be highly appropriate coming from a Harris male.  Ideas?  Suggestions??  Shoot 'um to me. (no pun intended)

I just got to try my phone system again, and I really like it.  I'm lots less irritated now that I have a way to fight back.  It fits right in with my personal phone motto:  Don't get mad--get even.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Oh, Arrrrrnold

Shame on you, Arnold.  First you knock up the maid behind Maria's back, and now you refuse to pay Maria's court costs, to dump your sorry a**.  If you were any kind of a man in the first place, you wouldn't even be here but now that you are, man up, give her anything and everything she wants, and at least try to give the impression that there is at least an ounce of a gentleman, some where in that hulking frame of yours.  Do it for her, do it for your kids, do it to right all the wrongs you've done to other women, in the past.  Hell, do it to set an example of what should happen when you get caught in a lie the size of the one you created.  But most of all, do it for yourself.  Clean house, Arnold. 
And that's just how I see it.

The Smalls

Oy, vey!  Mom's friend who takes her to church every Sunday is "frustrated" that the Plaza can't accommodate her needs, to have mom waiting in the Lobby to be picked up every Sunday.  I've been through this with her ad nauseum but at 83, mom's friend is not going to change.  I won't go into all the details but suffice it to say, it is what it is.
  It's so clear to me that she just doesn't understand memory loss.  Because mom can be so coherent at times, she has tons of her friends buffaloed.  Her friend is just the very best in the world, and I'm grateful that she's willing to take mom---I think I'm just tired of trying to make everybody happy-- when I don't have the power to do that in the first place.  The question that told the tale was when she said "Can't they make this little request happen?" and I had to tell her "Multiply your little request, times every single patient on mom's unit, with a special request, and tell me how manageable that sounds to you.  I know they would if they could, but it's just not possible".  When it gets to be too much, I've told her repeatedly, to pull the plug on doing it.  (And the underlying message is to please quit ragging me.)  :)

I finally hooked up with the Smalls yesterday afternoon after way too long not seeing them, for a Snider Plaza Health Food Store yogurt fest.  I knew I was missing them something awful and I could barely keep my hands off of them!  I wanted to just grab both of them and kiss them to pieces.  They made it there first and were choosing their flavors and getting their Sprinkles on top, when I arrived.  Since Avery was napping, I got Hadley and Hudson and their mom, Nicole, all to my self for a good thirty minutes of hilarity.  As soon as Had finished her yogurt, she started doing the "Vanna White" of the all vitamins.....although she knows she's not supposed to touch them, and I'm sure I wasn't much help as I kept laughing every time she sneakily picked up a bottle, and then gave us a HUGE smile.   Hudson has grown a foot--no lie--and his sister just thinks he is way better than chocolate.  They scampered around in the store, got a balloon from Mr. Glen, and Hadley dragged Hudson around the store, by the back of his shirt.  As all little sisters do, Had cannot keep her hands off Hud and God love him, he just puts up with it, for the most part.  He is a boy after all and when he's had enough, let's just say it's Fight Night.  I can tell I'm going to be a terrible grandmother because even that makes me laugh. 

The reality is, I knew something was missing, and yesterday I was able to figure out what it was.  It was them.  There is just nothing better than a big old jolt of kids and love, to get your motor running again.  I don't know what I'd do without these three little people.  Life would just NOT be near as fun.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Parkland Update

I am so excited I could just scream!  I got a call last week from a gal we've gotten to know in the fundraising area, inviting us to a lunch and preview of the new Parkland and while neither Bruce nor I can make it tomorrow, I told them I'd love a rain check.  The part that has me the most excited is to see the rooms they have already built out so donors can see what actual patient rooms will look like.  For a hospital junkie like me, that's just almost more than I can stand.  From what Cindy told me, the rooms look like the last thing you'd expect to see in a county/city hospital, and are state of the art. I am drooling....  She said they are beautiful, functional, and something that Dallas can be proud of and patients can be comfortable in, for a long time to come.

Which brings me to this:  I've heard some people say they think "a really nice hospital is something the poor don't and won't appreciate--they'll just tear it up."  And my response to that is, may you be poor immediately, and for a log time to come, so you may have the experience of walking a mile in their shoes.  I think beautiful clean, lovely, surroundings lifts any one's spirits while in the hospital, and who might be more deserving of that than someone who is ill and under served?  Will any hospital take a beating from constant use?  Of course, and Parkland sees more patients than any other hospital in this town.  The staff benefits, the community benefits, we all benefit.  It's just a win-win. 

When you think of giving, please consider the P.  Who knows?  You might be there next.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Happy 84th

Happy Birthday to my mom on her 84th b-day.  I ran by before lunch to see her and she was doing well, after having had a friend visit and bring her a beautiful purple orchid.  Mom loves orchids more than anything and has always had them until the problem of remembering to water them came up.  Since then, real orchids have been few and far between simply because I can't always manage to water hers on a schedule when they need it.  I tend to over water anyway, and one of mine recently dropped a lot of it's petals for that very reason.  Mom's orchids always looked great, way back when, but she may also have used the pitch and replace theory.  That's pretty much what I'm down to these days.  If I kill it, I just go get another one.

My sister and I sent her some beautiful flowers that had arrived before I got there.  I think every gal deserves flowers on her birthday and if nobody else sends them to you, then, hell, send them to yourself.  I think you're worth it.  And don't go pick them up either.  Have them delivered.  That just takes flowers to a whole other level. 

Sister has returned the roost after an early morning visit to the Vet, for blood work.  According to her dad, one of the Vet Tech's came and got her and took her to the back, since she had to stay for awhile.  The next thing he knew, Sis was blowing through their swinging door at warp speed, collar-less, and ears flying, trying to escape and find her dad, to take her home.  He said she was jumping up on her hind legs, bouncing, begging him not to make her stay.  The Vet Tech was hot on her heels, freaked that she had escaped.  Clearly they had underestimated her.  When she wants to move, she is fast as greased lightening. 

When I got home a bit ago, there she was in one of the den chairs, resting after her ordeal.  The more I loved on her, the squealier she got, so thrilled to have returned home to her kingdom, and all of her subjects.  Now she's napping.  She's had a rough day.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Kings of Leon?? Nah

I just checked my FB page and Benji had posted around 1AM, while out on the town in Vegas, some people thought he and one of his band mates, Nathan Gehri, were the lead singer and bass player of the Kings of Leon.  Apparently, they were totally starstruck, and kept buying Benji and Nathan drinks.  Benji and Nathan loved it, of course, so they played right along.  With his band of buddies there with them, they must have looked like they had an entourage.  The funniest part is, Nathan and Benji are always asked if they are brothers, they look so much alike.  Nathan looks more like Benji, than Brian does!  

I'm sure both Andrea and Benji have had a ball in their respective cities and are probably wiped out at this point.  If I hear any other hilarious stories, I'll pass them along.  I love're liable to see and hear just about anything.

Saturday, July 16, 2011


It seems I am officially stuck.  The scale is stuck on a number and does not seem to want to budge.  Never mind I have let myself have frozen yogurt, once, recently--you are supposed to be able to cheat occasionally or life ain't much worth livin', in my book.  So, that means I either have to ramp up the exercise to bust through this plateau, or decide this is where I want to stay.  The mere thought of ramping up my exercise more makes my eyes roll back in my head......c'mon.....can life truly be this cruel??  Apparently, yes.

If I cut back any further on food, no one, and I mean no one, will want to endure being around me.  I just don't do ravenously hungry well at all and I would totally suck in a Third World Country.  No AC, no food, no showers---I'd.... be.... a.....basket case.  Makes my little scale issue a true non-event.   So with that said, I think I will be TOTALLY grateful for where I live, and the number on my scale.  I'll just keep on working on it---and be GRATEFUL that I am where I am. 

Friday, July 15, 2011

Look out, Aquarium!

This is how the younger fashionistas dress, to go to the Aquarium.  Note all the accessories.  Her mom did the pony tail, and Hadley applied all the girly-girl gee gaws. When she came out to the car to leave, she told her mom "Don't look at me", and proceeded to hop right in.  Later, when she went to see Babe, my mom, Had reached into her purse, and gave mom some band aids.  I'm telling you...she is a scream.  Move over , Lady Gaga.

I just got a call from my neighbor, Mary, and she wants to take Bruce and me to lunch Sunday as a thank you for the mail, watering, Bruce fixing her car mirror, etc.  I keep telling her that's not necessary, but I've finally just decided if that's what she wants to do, to feel like she has properly thanked us, then I need to just let her.  She is such a crack up.  We always go to the same place and that's just fine.  Her cousin, Hamilton, always drives and joins us for lunch, and we love him, too.  She wanted us to go last Sunday but I couldn't as I was busy with MOB.  (Mother of Bride)  MOB and MOG were out and about scouting and making plans for a party for Andrea that needed some "assistance", as the younger gals giving it were ....well.....sort of stuck.  I am so fortunate to have a MOB that I not only adore, but who is fun and funny, and makes me laugh constantly.  Yeah, I know how incredibly lucky I am, too.

Today is blast off for the bride and groom to their respective cities for a last rip it up, tear it up, with their pals.  The last email I received concerning all the plans for Andrea's Bachelorette Party told all the girls attending, to be sure to "pack their party panties", and I rolled.  Dang, these girls are fun! 

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Amen, sista

This was sent to me by a follower and I just love it.  It's from O magazine and says exactly how I feel about getting older.

"The great thing about getting older is getting your priorities straight.  You can stop tap-dancing to everybody else's tune, and focus on perfecting your own routine".  

Can I get an amen on that?

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Sis's loot

New bag of food, a walrus with squeaker, a turtle with squeaker, and her most fav---a new Bobo with squeaker.  Bad news:  they were out of stuffed squirrels.  They always are.

Sis...Career Woman?

Someone around here is so bored and so sick of the heat, that even chasing the birds in the front yard has lost it's thrill.  Never mind there are lots of them to chase, since they are noshing on bugs in the grass, but it just seems to have lost it's thrill...even in the shade.  She just hung up her "Not Interested" sign, and has climbed up in the chair with me, such that I am literally perching on the seat edge, as I type.  If she's this bored and sick of the heat now, what in this wide world am I going to do with her in August??  Fred will kill me if I sign her up for doggie day care and I'm not getting into the "having a dog over to play" stuff.  A doggie Play Group?  Uh, no.

But I have promised to take her to PetsMart, later this afternoon, when it hits a balmy 106 or so.  She has a gift card she doesn't know about, and she's going to get to spend every damn dime if she wants to, on toys....any kind of toys..... as long as she likes them, and they keep her busy.  Plus, she'll get to see some other puppies, ride in the car, and sniff all over the store, so I'm thinking that should rate as a red letter day in her dog book.

The problem is, someone else spoils her all weekend.  He lets her do anything and everything.  They hunt together all day long Saturday and Sunday, and together are a squirrel killing machine.  He let's her roam all over, while he does yard workShe roams over to Freddie's (her BF), and eats alley trash She is in dog heaven for a full forty eight hours--and then Monday comes.  And he leaves her.  And I get her.  And I don't let her roam all over, and I don't squirrel hunt either, thank you.  Now, I know she loves me....she's nudging me right now to love on her, rub her ears, and just give her the usual all over scratch.  But next to squirrel hunting and trashing, that's pretty small potatoes, folks.  I am just no competition.  Maybe she just needs to go to the office with him.  Yeah, that's it.  She'd love that and when she's not napping, she could be the official office greeter--like the greeters at Walmart.  I think it's a smart career move, Sis.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Nuh, uh

Boy....this is not a truck I ever want to see out front of my house--and that's exactly where it is.  The good news is, it's for my neighbors, and he parked in front of the wrong house.  At least for now anyway.  For a second, I thought maybe he might be here for Sis.  It seems our neighbors have squirrels and possibly a raccoon or two......or five.  Racoons usually hang in packs so where there's one, be prepared for lots.  I was thinking they might have opossums, since we've had several in the back yard.  Fred threw one in the trash and when I lifted the lid, I thought it was dead, until it hissed at me. wanna see a fat girl run, just put a opossum in your trash can.  I nearly killed him for that.  I bet I set a brand new record for the driveway sprint, while cussing.

Frankly, I don't want to call these people to remove any of the stuff listed on the side of that truck.  All of those animals freak me out except beavers, and quit laughing 'cause I already know what you're thinking, and you're bad.

Monday, July 11, 2011

7.11.11 at 7-Eleven

If you want to feel like a kid again, run by your local 7-ELEVEN on your way home and get your free 7.11 ounce Slurpee.  I had just finished working out and stopped by ours, on the off chance they were participating.  If not, I'd have bought the biggest one they had at any price, I was so hot.  Dripping wet, trying to decide between Coke, DP, Cherry, or a Suicide (all three), I felt like a little girl again, with a really enormous decision.  What a great break on a hot Monday, to feel like a kid again with an ice cold Slurpee.  Wooo hoo!!

Fasten your seat belt

Oh, Lordy.....I best buckle up for the coming weekend.  It seems Benji and his band of bad boy friends will be heading for Vegas for his bachelor party, while Andrea and her gaggle of gals will head for New Orleans.  Now, Andrea, I don't need to worry about.  She's a woman-- and a smart one-- and she'll be just fine.

Benji could be an entirely different story...think Hangover 2.  And if my source is correct, there will be LOTS of alcohol induced pressure schmoozing to get a tat on my baby boy somewhere, some how, and I'm not talking the henna kind.  There could even be a monkey or two, for all I know, which brings me to this:  I don't wanna know what happens, and it's just better if I don't.  There's not a momma alive that needs or even wants that kind of information.  As long as he doesn't get one of these, we're good.

Saturday, July 9, 2011


I am still smiling over a phone call I got last night, regarding mom.  It seems that one of the Concierge's at the Plaza takes a real interest in all of the old ladies over there, and mom happens to be on of the ladies Frank loves.  He asked my sister and I yesterday if he had our permission on Wednesdays and Fridays, to make sure mom got to go to movie night, over on the Assisted Living side, with her old band of buddies.  To say that we were thrilled is an understatement.  We didn't know about movie night or it's big deal status for mom, or we'd have tried to set something up earlier.  Franks said as long as he was on duty on those nights, he'd get her over there and make sure someone else walked mom back to the Alzheimer side, after the movie was over.  He's off before movie night ends.

Last night, he called to tell me he'd gone to get mom, had taken her over, and when she saw the old crew, she cried.  Now, Frank does have a flair for the dramatic, so I don't really know if she did or not, and frankly, who cares.  As long as she had fun and enjoyed it, I couldn't be more appreciative of his efforts.  I just called my sister to fill her in and she said this:  "Well, I sure hope someone like Frank is looking out for me when I get to be mom's age", and we both laughed.  Soooo true.  Between a margarita and movie night, I think mom had a great day yesterday.  Good for her!

Frank also supplies one of the ladies over there with crossword puzzles.  She adores them and he keeps Xerox copies of them in the drawer at the front desk for her.  But here's the clincher:  he gives her the same puzzle every time, and she just loves it.  She doesn't know the difference.  Frank is a piece of work to say the least and, please, God, let me have a Frank when I get old.

Friday, July 8, 2011


Now, I admit I've been known to baby sit some strange stuff--my kids clothes, guns, deer heads, X-boxes, window ac units, and loads of other weird sh**, but this is by far the largest and weirdest.  And right now, it doesn't even run.  Aren't you a jealous wreck that this isn't in the middle of your driveway, bikini top and all?  Eat your heart out.

Sometimes it's just the little things...

Somebody messed up her ribs--again--I think doing the ab/crunch machine at the gym, and then doing the machine for her obliques.  That twisty one-- from hell.  Yep....I did, and now I'm spending lots of time with the Advil and Tylenol Extra Strength bottle, and a bag of frozen peas on my left, lower back, ribs.  This is a really bad time for a body breakdown especially when you consider I ate two servings of peach cobbler over the 4th and a small bowl of Fred's ice cream.   Luckily for me, yesterday I went to my chiropractor and got all my ribs put back where they should be, and though I'm still really sore, I can breathe without feeling like someone is stabbing me from behind, or in the front, near your collar bone.  I found out lots of people share my rib issues and here I was thinking I was unique...NOT. 

I've been told to wave a big fat permanent adios to some of the gym machines, and frankly, I'm just fine with that.  I can still do the leg and some of the arm ones, as long as they don't crank on my ribs.  That doesn't hurt my feelings one bit. The rest can be weights and lunges, the ab crunch ball for way too many tortures, and all those stacked steps with weights....ahhhhh.....makes me tired and sweaty just thinking about it.

Today my sister and I took mom out to lunch and while I'm glad we did, it was far from easy.  She has a really hard time climbing in and out of the car and I could only imagine her plopping down on the concrete and us trying to hoist her back up.  She is just dead weight when that happens but luckily, she made it over and back, with no "plops".  She cracked me up at lunch when the waiter came and asked us what we'd like to drink.  I turned to her to ask her "do you want ice tea, a coke, water?" and she got this huge grin on her face and said she'd have a margarita AND a glass of water.  I said "Frozen?" and she said "You bet".

The minute the waiter left, she wanted to know where that margarita was....I think she asked me twice, before he finally made it back with it, and put it down in front of her.  She told me it had been two years since she'd had one, and with that, she started sucking on her straw.  I don't think I have ever seen someone enjoy one sister and I just started howling.  I figured she was headed for a big old brain freeze but she did just fine.  And don't think for a second she left one drop of it in the glass, before we left.  Oh, No, baby...she picked up that glass and slurped down the last little bit.  If I hadn't been worried about her falling, hell.....I'd have ordered her another one-- for dessert. 

Thursday, July 7, 2011

I miss Muff

I'm in a bit of a confused quandary this morning.  I've realized I am missing the Muff Man (deceased cat) more than I'd like to admit, and I'd get another one in a NY minute except for these things: 1) cat fur everywhere 2) litter box 3) cat food 4) cat food cat breath.   I miss his hilarious personality, his soft silky self, and his unique when I'd be reading and he'd walk between me and the book, and nonchalantly lie down, on my book or newspaper.  OK...maybe that behavior is not so unique but it's still hilarious to me in it's cat like quality.  Muff would look me straight in the eye as he did this, as if it was just fine, and not bothering HIM in the slightest.

   I saw a red Abyssinian cat on a TV commercial do the exact same move, and it made me want to grab him through the TV and rub his ears, just like I used to do to Muff.  And Muff was a talker in his later years, and I miss that..... a little.  Yak, yak, yak..... especially if something didn't suit him or he wanted me to sit down and hold him.  He'd even squawk at me when he was ready to go to bed and wanted me to get in with him, so he could get under the covers in his "cat tent".  Boy, you know you are whipped when your cat is telling you when to go to bed, and you do it.

Now, while I miss Muff, I really don't want to go back to cat keeping--I just want all of the fun, and none of the hassle.  Sort of like grandparenting, only with a cat.  Maybe I'll just go find a cat on our block and play with it, or go play with one at Petco--and then go home.  Minus the cat. 

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Summer TV

My head is still spinning this morning.  First the Casey Anthony verdict, then an episode of the Real Housewives of New Jersey.  OMG.  The latter was a slow death, by tackiness, and the worst part was, I found myself  totally unable to turn the channel.  I think I was probably in shock, and just too stunned.  Watching the husbands shoot skeet off the front porch of a family owned mountain cabin, all boozed up, was a little too Jethro Bodine for me. 

  Those NJ gals all need to be sent to another country, with their spouses, and just left there.  Word on the street is that the Beverly Hills and New York Housewives shows are pretty hilarious, so I might give those a shot, but NJ is permanently off my radar.  Bleeeech.  I was on that particular channel so I wouldn't miss Million Dollar Decorator's, at 9 PM.  Now, Million Dollar Decorators was fairly hilarious and entertaining, and the stuff that went on is exactly what I figured goes on, behind the scenes of design projects.  At one point, a designer has the tacky tile floor of a restaurant dug up, two feet down into the dirt, to replace it with a more esthetically pleasing antique, reclaimed wood floor.  Why down to the dirt??  That was a total fubar, on his part, and then he tries to get the client to cough up $50,000 more, for the wood floors, and the client says "no thanks".  Can't wait to see what happens with that. that a cement mixer I hear in yonder parking lot??

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

At the Parade

One last pic from yesterday's festivities!  Three little Fire Crackers!!  Adorable!!

Monday, July 4, 2011

Happy 4th

I couldn't resist posting this!!  It's a Weiner 4th!!!

4th of July prep

I am on it....I am on the peach cobbler making like white on rice.  My Fredricksburg peaches are thawing and my pie crust is, too.  I'm going the total cheater route and using premade frozen Pillsbury pie crusts so I can get up tomorrow, have my coffee, put the whole thing together and pop it into the oven, and be cobbler-ing after lunch.  In fact, cobbler could even be lunch, if all goes well.  In the interest of holding down the total caloric frenzy, I bought Bluebell vanilla frozen yogurt vs the real heavy duty homemade vanilla.  I figured the latter would blow any diet to hell and back.  For 100 calories per serving, it was worth it to cut a corner....any corner, somewhere. 

Fred is in the kitchen with Crashman, making the Mexican Chocolate ice cream as I type.  I can hardly go in there because by the time he's finished, every pan we own will be strung from one end of the kitchen to the other, all in the creation of one recipe.  He does seem to be enjoying himself, so I'll just zip it.

If you haven't seen "Bridesmaids", go see it tomorrow.  Fred did the donkey bray laugh and could hardly breathe he was laughing so hard.  It is hilarious and one part got him "braying" all over again, as we left the theater.  He saw two ladies still laughing so hard they were wiping their eyes, and that set him (and me) off, all over again.

That was supposed to be yesterday's post just wasn't.  Fred has the ice cream freezer purring, as I sip my coffee--his recipe says to chill the the mix overnight, before popping it into the ice cream freezer, so certain directions must be followed.  Time to start my cobbler.

Today, I am grateful to be an American, making ice cream in my own home, before 9 AM.  Gotta love it.  The flags are out, lining our front walk, and the bunting is between the boys old bedroom windows.  While we live in an imperfect country, it's still the best there is.  Happy Birthday, USA!!

Sunday, July 3, 2011's FUN

Hello, Houston, we have a problem.  For the life of me, I cannot find Senator John Connally's Peach Ice Cream recipe that was featured in Southern Living magazine a mere 25 or so years ago.  I had it for the longest time and now it's AWOL.  As I remember, it was the best peach ice cream ever and probably had as much sugar in it as Bluebell, but seriously, who exactly cares?  If you're gonna indulge, indulge.  I went online to SL mag to try to check their archives, with no luck, so I may have to send them a suck up email to see if they can find it. If you happen to have it, shoot it to me, please.

Now, I'm not sure I'm going to make it, even if they can find it---I just want to know I have it back in my stash of recipes.  It's a comfort thing more than anything.....just knowing I can read it vs actually making and eating it.  No telling how many trees I've killed printing recipes I might someday want to make.  I read cookbooks like novels.  They all tell a story by the foods contained within, and I am always the main character, of course, cooking each recipe to rave reviews of the people being served.  Sad, isn't it?  Quit's fun.  In my imagination, I've also designed the tablescapes in each picture, if I like them--if not, somebody else did them, poor thing.  As you can tell, I have a BIG imagination since 1) I am a mediocre cook at best 2) I am usually too lazy to do any tablescape type thing, period.  But, I do like to pretend, so that's what I do....just like a little girl playing house.  It's entertaining and if I don't like what's in the picture, I just turn the page.

I think most women do this, too, which is why we all subscribe to so many magazines.  Whether it's fashion, food, or design, we all like to think that's us wearing that cool dress, that we cooked that killer meal, or live in that to die for house.  I really like pretend.....when you get tired of it, you just get up and go do something else.  And, you don't have to cleanup the kitchen or pay some hideous credit card bill for that dress or furniture you bought.  Love, Love, Love it!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Mom update

Bruce and I just went by after working out to check on her, and while she was leaning a little to the right, she also had her chair stuffed with a bunch of pillows, just like she used to do on her sofa, which often tilted her a little to the right, too.  I asked her to get up and walk for me and she did, though slowly, but she hasn't been setting speed records in quite a while, so no big deal.  We chatted for a bit and she was clear as a bell, and had Bruce and I laughing about old timely crank ice cream freezers.  My best guess is, she's having TIA's (mini strokes) and one of these days, she's going to have a bigger one-- or more than one.  The good news is, for right now, she's good, and at 3 PM, she's headed for the ice cream social we reminded her about.  Ice cream cures just about everything.


This morning, I've got a case of the "sads."  I got a call yesterday that mom was "leaning to the right" and while she's done this before, and it resolved itself, this just isn't great news.  You don't want to think of your mom as looking like the leaning tower of Pisa --but right now she does.  She can stand but isn't walking.

Her vital signs are all good so I have just adopted a wait and see attitude, since mom has always been adamant that when something happens to her, she doesn't want any extraordinary measure taken, to keep her here.  I had the PA check her out and we both agreed there was just no reason she had to go to the hospital.  Yes, we could go to Presby and have a gabillion test run and spend a huge sum of money for Medicare to pick up, but that's not what she wants, so that's not what we're gonna do.  I checked earlier this morning and she is essentially the same.  As long as she is comfortable and not in any pain, onward we go.  I am not going to try to prevent something happening to her, that I don't have the power to prevent in the first place.

When I spoke with Martin, the PA, I could tell my reaction of "let's wait and see" was a bit of a surprise to him.  I think a lot of the folks he deals with first response is to "do something".  When I assured him this is what mom has schooled me to do, for years, when things started heading south with her, I could feel him relax on the phone.  I told him I would take full responsibility and that whatever happened, we were both doing our designated jobs.  And then we both started laughing. Funny how laughter makes things so much easier.

I just hung up with mom and after asking her if she was walking today, she told me "Yes, I have a walker" and when I said "But do your legs work?", she said "I don't know...I haven't used them yet today", I just had to laugh.  She doesn't mean to be funny, but sometimes she just is.  My sister and I are taking her out to lunch on Friday to satiate that " hankerin' " for Mexican food.  When I told her just now, she crowed with delight.  She's going to tell everybody over there she's going out to lunch on Friday.  Sometimes it's the small stuff that's BIG.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Look out, Charlene

I'm going to have to out myself here lest I bear the shame of giving you the impression that I actually do what I say I'm going to do, when it comes to ironing.  I haven't-- and it's all still hanging there-- and since there are still a few wearable things in my closet, I have yet to pick up that 10,000 pound iron.  It's not that it's heavy--it's just that I don't want to do it.  Once I get started, it's not so bad--it's just that getting started part that's tough.  I just realized, though that Senora Maria won't be here on Monday, due to the holiday, and I may be in serious trouble by then.  Dang.

What about this recent report that Charlene Witstock, runaway bride, took off for the Monaco airport to bail on Prince Albert and this weekends wedding, after finding out about some "dastardly behavior" on his part?  Whether it actually happened or not, Honey, take at good hard look at your in-laws to be, as well as Albert, and that should be all the information you need.  It is what it is, Charlene, and he ain't no prize, but if you still want the guy, go ahead and marry him 'cause I'm not sure too may other women want him.  Yeah, the gold diggers might still want him, but most have already had him, so buyer beware.  And FYI--the lemon law does not apply in Monaco or marriage.

If you haven't seen the email on the Internet (Yahoo) sent by the worlds meanest MIL, to her soon to be DIL, get on and read it, because it'll blow your dress up for sure, and give you the best laugh of the day.  I swanny......that MIL to be has gotta be so freaking embarrassed that her email went viral, thanks to one of her friends(?) and now everybody knows what a toad she really is.  No matter what happened between the two, that's just plain old mean spirited and down right ignorant--almost exactly what she accused her soon to be DIL of being.  OMG.  Stupid much, lady?  Bet she won't do that again.

And speaking of weddings, (how was that for a slick segue), I finally heard back from the florist via a return email, and he sounds lovely and most helpful.  He asked a question I couldn't answer, like the shape of the table--was it unique (?)-- beats me---and said since he is very familiar with the Villa B., he would find out all the specific's of where they plan to seat us, table shape, etc., and go from there.  He already knows I want lemons incorporated in the theme, so this should be really fun to see what he comes up with.  I love flowers and this kind of stuff more than anything, and if I had my way, I'd be borrowing Italian china from somewhere, to do the table in also.  Hey.....go big or go home.  This is my baby boy's send off into married life, and I love, love, love seeing something beautiful, created in love.  All in all, I feel like we are in great Italian hands, and since I'm not doing the flowers, or cooking the dinner, my plan is just to go and have FUN. 

Happy 4th !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!