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Archive for February, 2008

Febuary 29, 2008 What a week!!

Hey everyone this is Anna’s husband M. We have had a very rough week here.  First of all the car got wrecked on Monday but its cool now. The car is fine. In addition to that little slice of Heaven Anna’s mom broke her left arm in 3 places between her shoulder and elbow on Tuesday night. We expect her to go into surgery to have it fixed tonight Anna has been at the hospital with her practically every minute. I personally hope she comes home soon. Oh and Pascal is fine too.

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I adore my friend Rachel’s little girl.  She is a cutie pie and a half.  However, I got an email today where Rach has entered a scholarship contest for cutest baby pic (Daddy’s Little Girl).  Apparently, all it takes to win this thing is to have enough votes.  I get it…sort of… 

Rachel seems to have an obsession with these online picture contests.  Yearbook.com is her version of porn.  She pits her daughter, her son, her husband, herself, and even her dog against anyone and everyone.  This includes a recent instance when she pitted her dog, Radagast, against a young couple’s wedding photo (and no…she didn’t know them).  He won.  She felt bad about it; I know because she said so every time she told anyone who would listen about her dog winning.   

Am I the only one who hates these things??? 

Let’s get this straight right now.  You’re kids are adorable and cute!  Yep, every darned one of them (even my cousin who looked for all the world like a red-haired baby monkey…they should’ve shaved him for the pictures).   

However…what used to be the terror of the playground is now the terror of the internet.  Mommy-one-upsmanship (MOU) has risen to epidemic proportions.  Bragging is one thing I get.  (hey, you’ve seen the pics of Pascal…I’m not about to give up pasting his little face on every surface real or digital anywhere someone will let me…the only thing that stops me in the real world are cops…when the government falls, my first step is to paint a giant Pascal on the big W’s parking lot…ya know, so Kang & Kodos will know where to pick us up)  But you have to have personal limits.  I adore my Pas, but consciously I know that he doesn’t photograph especially well (ok, I don’t photograph him especially well) and he’s not going to be voted cutest puppy of the millennium.  I wonder if the MOU’s know that underneath it all?  My baby brother Will was an adorable child and was always commented upon in public (imagine big pale blue eyes, long lashes, and long corkscrew golden blond curls…Mom was way ahead of Kate Hudson), but my mother never once tried to point it out to other people or put him in contests (even though it was suggested many times).  We took MUCH more pride in his manners and abilities (how many 3yr olds do you know that can take a chainsaw apart, fix it, and put it back together?  Yes, he did just that…oh how I wish we’d had a video camera back then).  Sure that’s another form of MOU, and no, I don’t approve of people shoving that one too much either.  But, at least, that one has to do with ability and not just luck-of-the-draw looks.   

I’m not a MOU, not really.  I know the difference between cute and “Quick! Call Hollywood!”  Anytime a third party says to me, “Isn’t so-and-so’s child just the most beautiful thing in the world?”  I find it hard not to go, “Uhhh…if you say so.”  Unfortunately, I’m not calling Hollywood for them.  I can say, “They’re cute.”  But, I think we all know what that means.  They’re cute for now; they shouldn’t get too used to it.  How torturous for some kids to be cute one day and get to the age when “they aren’t really all that adorable anymore” practically overnight.  They don’t call them the awkward years for nothin’.  How much of that suffering would be eliminated if people didn’t do the contests and bragging quite so much?  (We don’t have to give it up completely…just taper off…hence no pic of Pas THIS TIME)

And I’m pretty sure the scholarship goes to the kid…

Lesson for today: Obsession bad.

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Ok, so it’s kind of like trying to find Bigfoot, but IT’S THERE! What is it you ask? Carolina Jessamine, otherwise known as the first flower to bloom here on the hill. Mmmm…the heady scent of Jessamine is soon to waft in the cool breeze. 🙂

In honor of this (and because of all the cooking shows on tv on Sunday mornings…I think Paula Deen was trying to hypnotize me on QVC…but Nigella saved me with bean mash), I decided to make something with the handful of fresh kale I had on hand. After much rummaging, I came up with 2 cans of Great Northern beans, a little chopped onion, and bit of sundried tomatoes in olive oil. I started with everything but the beans (I love my cool cooking pots that Tina got me for Christmas), and steamed the kale, onion, and tomatoes with a touch of the olive oil drizzled on top.

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M. attacked. But I held strong and only gave him a little bit before I added the un-drained beans and a little bit of Mediterranean seasonings (mostly oregano, thyme).

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It was a lovely, quick soup. Though, I think next time I’ll drain and rinse the beans and serve it as a warm salad.

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Either it was really good or someone hid their stash in my oregano because before I knew it we had decided to head to Phoenix next month. My MIL has been throwing hissy fits on every single holiday for the past year because she hasn’t seen M. in a long time and she’s never met me in person. Personally, I’d rather have an enema performed by an orangutan on smack that confuses the nozzle with a hot curling iron.

Instead, M.’s decided to sweeten the pot by suggesting we use some of our meager means to take the Amtrak Sunset Limited to Phoenix and suffer the Greyhound bus on the way home. It’s an extra $130 or so, but it sounds kind of cool. I’ve been looking at it this afternoon, and it sounds interesting with lots of retirees, families, and wayward student types. Obviously, we’ll be traveling coach, but I’ve yet to see how much the food costs on the train. (I mean is that how they get ya? Trap me on a moving train and then force me to pay $3 for a 60 cent candy bar?)

Not to mention, my MIL has made it abundantly clear that Pascal is not welcome (it’s not like I was going to bring him anyhow…but way to get on my good side…next time just kick me hard, it will be more humane). This leaves me with one simple feeling…JEALOUSY. I’m his mommy and I don’t want Tina, Mom, Davis, or Will taking my place. Part of me realizes that won’t happen because the few times I’ve left Pas with them for more than 5 hours, they get pretty bored and start ignoring him. But I may cry when I hear his whining as we leave.  He looks sad already…

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P.S.- I just realized I never showed ya’ll my flannel ragdoll. So here it is (along with part of the baby shrine).  Not so much Waldorf as WTH?

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 Are you ready for this???  Tada!  

Valentines Day ‘08

Just when you think they’ll never learn.  When you think that there’s no hope of romance.  That those loving, lusting early days of your relationship are totally dead and buried and all you can do is just hold hands when you walk and learn to treasure the little things like his taking out the trash.  He does something like spend $2 on a heart-shaped box of candy and a card (did I pick the wrong day to give up sugar or what? oh well…tomorrow is another day).  I almost cried, seriously.    

Sure, we’ve had a little more cash lately, and Tina prompted him a little. (what are sisters for? poking and prodding husbands! that’s sisterly love that is.)  But M. actually went out and bought me something for Valentine’s Day.  I’m so…happily surprised.  Yep, that is definitely the phrase “happily surprised”.  I’m also deeply touched.    

M. does surprise me on occasion, or he used to surprise me.  I thought those days were long gone.  For one thing, in the past his gifts have been brought about mainly by brawls, and after our marital difficulties of the past year, I had assumed that we were past the gift-giving/get-outta-jail-free-card phase of marriage, and I saw it as a part of our relationship growing-up.  Of course the lack of money was a big part of that.  I had learned to hate his gifts because they so often came from arguments and it always felt like he was trying to buy my affection.  I can honestly say that if he had tried to buy his way out of his unfaithfulness I truly believe we would have divorced.  I just couldn’t have taken him trying to buy his way out of it.  (ok, now I am crying  

Instead, this little gift melts my heart and says to me that the worst is truly behind us.  No, it’s not the only time he’s surprised me.  It may not even be the absolute best ever surprise he’s given me. (just take a look below at the 3 dozen roses and teddy bear he sent me just before he came home from Iraq…the occasion?  just because…aaawww…I still remember the joy and how I couldn’t stop smiling…it’s the reason women long for unexpected romance)  But today, on this day of love, this little heart box and card are more than I could ever ask for.  

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P.S.- For those of you lamenting this day, please don’t.  Use it as a day for renewal and hope for your future.  Love is out there and as sappy (and somewhat horrific) as it sounds everything happens for a reason and in its own good time.  Try not to wallow in sadness (it seems to be the second national pastime on this day…and what’s it really going to do for you? add pounds and make you miserable?); instead open your eyes to the love around you even if it’s just a couple of birds sharing a crust of bread nearby. 

P.P.S.- Hug someone who needs it today!  It is the day reserved for love!   

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 Em has tagged me!  Yay!  I’m somebody!  You like me; you really, really like me!  Now that my Sally Field moment is over (how do I get this damned nun’s habit off? What do you mean they can’t see me writing this, M.?), I bet you’re wondering what sort of meme this is.  It’s pretty simple.  It’s like this: 

The rules are as follows:
# Link to the person who tagged you
# Post the rules on your blog.
# Share seven random and/or weird facts about yourself on your blog.
# Tag seven random people at the end of your post, and include links to their blogs.
# Leave a comment on their blogs so that they know they have been tagged.
 

Sounds easy enough on the surface, right?  But narrowing it down to only seven things was rough.  There’s a lot of odd in me just dying to get out and prance (it would break dance but I can’t find my beat-box).  So here goes:  

~~I have gotten a new mole in an undisclosed location every six years like clockwork (and NO, I won’t tell you where, you pervert!) 

~~I’m experienced at castrating hogs (enough said really…right? lol)   

~~I have eaten various forms of roadkill cuisine including squirrel, raccoon, and opossum (though not actually off the road…as far as I know anyhow…and I’ve learned one thing…squirrel gumbo was GOOD…though I could never eat meat again…much less raccoon) 

~~On my first date with my ex-love J., we started talking about genealogy.  I quickly discovered that his surname was my mother’s maiden surname.  That’s right I was dating my cousin (hey, a VERY DISTANT cousin…like 10th cousin or somethin’…I got the lowdown before we started making out…sure I’ll date my cousin but I’m not a slut!) 

~~I wrote a scifi/fantasy novel and while writing it I realized one of the characters was subconsciously based on my ex-love J.  The anti-J. hero was a dark haired ex-soldier.  This happened 3 months before I met M. who is now an ex-soldier with dark hair (neenu neenu…neenu neenu) 

~~I enjoy showering outdoors.  At my second place, I personally installed an outdoor shower with hot & cold running water.  You never feel cleaner than when showering in the open air…or dirtier for that matter.  lol 

~~And random weirdness #7…We had a goat that also enjoyed me showering outdoors.  It didn’t really bother me at first until I realized that he didn’t show his…uh…appreciation…to anyone else but me.  (I learned to fear the goat ::crazy eyes::)  

Ohhhh…Jeff Foxworthy…you write it and I live it.  ::sigh::  Did I mention that my parents are hillbillies?  Explain much?   

And now that I’ve set the bar nice and high, we need the random people (I can only assume that they come from random sex).  I decided to delurk and tag some people who I thought could make this interesting and some to whom I thought this might be a challenge and some whose secret weirdness I just really wanted to know (up to them to figure out which one they are  ::evil grin::).  lol  So here’s the skinny on the randoms: 

rambling housewife

its me penelope

i shot a man in reno

redneck mommy

minivan bohemian

two cheeseballs + one and a bun

vintage thirty

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Just a quick posty, to tell ya’ll I took a hint from…well she knows who she is.  I signed up at feedburn.com and have added links to my sidebar for subscriptions (if you want a different service let me know they have most of the common ones).  If anyone tries it, do me a fave and let me know if they’re working.  I got it to work on my Yahoo page by using my feedburner address, but I had only signed up a few minutes before. 

Oh, and I’m still on treadmill madness and doing all driving for the next couple of days.  I’ll delurk as soon as possible and visit ya’ll.  Byes!

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We’re on our morning trip with NPR riding sidesaddle when I hear the oddest and what I assumed to be the rudest thing I’d hear all day:  

“I just got an award given to me by a Beatle. Have you had that happen yet, Kanye?” Vince Gill at Sunday’s Grammy Awards some time after Kanye West had gone over the time allotted his acceptance speech to talk about his recently deceased mother. 

WTF was that???  Are Gill and West in an East coast/West coast style feud or something?  Why would anyone make such a remark?  It seems a bit snarky to me even if Kanye did smile when Gill said it. 

I’ve mentioned Kanye West in humorous passing before which is very odd since I have no idea what he sings (I’m old and will defend my desire to sing along to Barry Mannilow to the death!).  It’s even odder that he seems to keep popping up on my radar.  Then again, maybe it’s not him.  Maybe it’s the rudeness that I keep running into. 

While at the big W (aka Walmart aka home of the shopping damned) this morning, I found it in the form of a nasty little woman.  I was in a relative hurry, and early in the morning there are almost no lines open at W.  Thus, I chose the 20-items-or-less line (usually I take my time and don’t really care how quickly I get out of the store but today Murphy’s Law kicked me in the nads).  And what did I find?  A rude woman…let’s call her…Bleach Dump or BD (for her WAY OVER PROCESSED blond hair and her attitude respectively).  BD proceeds to load about 40 items onto the counter; no big deal since it’s not unusual to have a cashier let you into this line if there’s no one waiting.  Then BD pulls out a credit card that’s in her bosses name to pay for the items, and granted, she was wearing a t-shirt with the name of her supposed employer’s business.  When the very nice cashier refused to accept the card without approval from her supervisor, BD got just plain SNOTTY.  “Ask for Soandso.  They all know me here.  I come in all the time.” She said loudly.  Then BD proceeds to complain that this particular cashier always does this to her and how she can’t stand her.  Meanwhile, I ignored her tirade (which I assume was some sort of whacked defense mechanism) as did the other lady in line.  I was insulted FOR the cashier!  Once she returned with manager approval, BD continued to be snotty and then walked around and picked up a Dr.Pepper to add to the total before she left.  The cashier immediately began apologizing and defending herself.  There was no need to do so!  Straight away, I told her that if BD is such a trusted employee they should get her a card in her name, and that I could make a t-shirt like she was wearing with no trouble at all.  There are scammers everywhere, and BD shouldn’t have taken it so personally. 

Rudeness has reached epidemic proportions and I’m just plain sick of it!  There’s something about being in a check-out line that makes people act like animals.  I’ve seen similar incidents at least twice a week in a variety of stores.  Where’s the ribbon for this cause?  Because everyone needs to be wearing it!

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