Tuesday, May 31, 2011

I know it was here just yesterday! Wasn't it?

This is a picture taken when I was – I dunno 15 or 16 maybe.  It was the day I was cutting off my hair to just above shoulder length and getting it feathered on the sides.  Remembered feathering?  Yeah, awesome. 

The picture is a little worse for wear, something got stuck to it and left paper attached – but you can see a few things from my teenage years.  The big console TV (that didn’t work) with the little one (that did) on top of it.  Both black and white.  Standard in a lot of homes.  The red velvet Grand Marnier bottle (empty) – just because it was cool and alcohol related.  Oh – and see the yellow plastic ladder that held my earrings?  Yeah, we all had something similar, and just to the left of the poster is a little “Love is ..” cartoon.  Wow, I was a walking teenage stereotype apparently!

But there is one thing in this picture I miss, something I would love to have back if I had any idea where it went or how to find it again.

That butt!  Will you look at that?  Amazing, if I do say so myself.


Monday, May 30, 2011

Memorial Day

We remember and honor those who have died ..

.. and say THANK YOU.


Maxine Monday

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Wednesday, May 25, 2011

My neighborhood gas station - not such a friendly place.

Listening to the radio the other day, the show was being broadcast from Los Angeles.  The news guy came on and starting talking about local gas prices, as he said “the highest in the nation” at $4.12 a gallon.


Need to see that a little better?

Welcome to Illinois, a state deeply in debt, where the government is so irresponsible with our money, taxes were raised 67% this year to cover expenditures.  You read that right.  67%.  And this is considered legitimate government? 

They all ought to be in jail.

Have a nice day.


Tuesday, May 24, 2011

I’m in love with an object. Don’t judge me.

Yes, I bought this phone on eBay.  Isn't it great?  It didn't take much cleaning up and disinfecting and I am crazy for it!  

I plugged it in and it works - at least as far as a call coming in goes.  That ring!  Geez!  Amazing with all the ring tones we are exposed to now, how we forget the loud jangle of the old desktop phones.  Dialing out, well, my service must not accommodate a dial phone because the dial tone never goes away and then it asks me if I need help.  Well maybe, but not with the phone.  

But I don't care if I can dial out!  And actually, it's not plugged into a phone line where it is right now.  Makes no difference to me, I didn't buy it to use it, silly!  I really just wanted to dial it.  I did.  It has a very satisfying feel and a very satisfying sound when you dial it.  I'm sure I could get something close in an app somewhere but there is just something about putting your finger in there and moving that dial around.  My son was kind of amazed.  "It would take you a whole minute to dial 9-1-1!"  

"Um yeah, probably."  I said.  "But - we didn't have 9-1-1 back then."  

What did we do, anyway?  I can't remember.  Didn't we just dial zero and ask the operator for the police?  That wouldn't have taken very long.


Monday, May 23, 2011

Maxine Monday

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Thursday, May 19, 2011

Who’s the jerk now?

My backyard is ugly.  There are pine needles all over and bare spots everywhere.  The patio is the size of a postage stamp and spiders tend to gather there for a smoke and a beer.  Or something.  So .. the backyard isn't used that much, it's just not.
But every once in a while my daughter comes over with the grandpuppy and likes to let Rue (aka the puppy) out to run loose in the yard since she does not have anywhere fenced in to do that at home.  Besides the fact that if Rue is not let outside every 20 minutes the cats will have heart attacks.  Every single one of them.

So it was really annoying when it became obvious that the neighbor who has a much bigger and nicer house, yard, and car than I do, was running a little pipe straight from his house to the fence between our yards.  Ahem.  Straight to my yard, in other words.  And the puddles and lakes in my yard that the ducks would visit after a good rain - were thanks to my neighbor with his nice house and basement with a sump pump.
Never said I could dance!
So I called the village.  Had to leave a voicemail about my neighbor, fences, sump pump drainage and ducks.  I got a voicemail back saying they would look into it.  Didn't know if they would just take care of it or if they would let me know what they did.

Today I got a letter.  Very official and all that, documenting the claim that that neighbor was dumping sump water in this neighbor's yard.  It included a conclusion that that neighbor was indeed running his sump pump water directly into this neighbor's yard and a letter would be sent instructing that neighbor to direct his drainage pipe elsewhere.

The best part?  They sent pictures!  Two 8x10's printed on computer paper, one taken in that neighbor's yard - and the other taken in this neighbor's yard.  Wh-h-e-e-e-e-e !!!!!!!!!!!

Another happy dance down - no idea how many more - to go.


Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Her cup runneth over. With karma. *snort*

Y'know that person, friend, the one who has never struggled with their weight?  The one that simply cannot understand that you gain weight by simply smelling baked goods or sugar but insists on putting it under your nose anyway saying "oh it's SO-O-O-O-o-o good!  Are you sure you don't want some?" as she waves a sticky finger full of gooey monkey bread under your nose.  "Okay, you don't have to eat any, but just smell it - it's SO-O-O-O-o-o good!"  

You know her, right?  You have that person in your life who could bathe in brownie pie and never absorb an ounce on her thighs, don't you?  Or maybe it's a guy who can inhale 2 Big Macs, a super sized fry and a large chocolate shake every day for lunch and never grow a gut.  And of course these people don't exercise.  Not in any kind of regular or organized way. They don't ride a bike to work, they eat a heavy dinner with dessert every night and don't need to unbutton their pants when they get up from the table.

Also?  They are the ones pushing you to buy their cookie dough, candy bars and girl scout cookies telling you "c'mon, it's only once a year .. once a year can't hurt you!"

Yeah.  We all have these people.  They belong to us somehow.  And mine?  Sh-h-h ... she doesn't read my blog but I still don't want to say this very loud ... mine?  tee hee ... lately she's developed a tiny bit of a muffin top.  Yep.  Not a lot, she's not overweight, but just enough to make her feel a tiny bit uncomfortable and squishy.  

I'm happy.  I cannot help it, I am relishing it.  Forgive me.  But I am doing a quiet little happy dance and you know why?

Because it's SO-O-O-O-o-o good!!!


Monday, May 16, 2011

Maxine Monday

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Friday, May 13, 2011

And then, there’s Riley~


He's called the crabby old man cat for a reason.  According to the vet Riley is around 17 years old.  Pretty old for a kitty.  He is the only boy out of 4 cats, yet he has a stuffed lamb as a girlfriend.  Don't ask.
He's never been one for cuddling, or much of a lap cat.  He has always been more of the stereotypical ‘aloof’ cat, content to ignore the humans in the room unless they can be useful to him.
Now, as he's gotten older, he has become my shadow.  When I am sitting, he is sitting next to me, sometimes on me which is unheard of with him.  Used to be he would nip when he decided he was done being petted, now he will sit and purr and keep asking for more with his eyes - forever.

Makes me crazy that this crabby old man shed-machine is on me, all. the. time.  But on the other hand .. how soon will I be wishing he was still here to 'bother' me some more?  So I pet him and baby him and let him sit on me, and laugh when he sits on the back of the couch and head butts my head. 

I mean really, crabby old man cats don't last forever, y'know?


They didn’t let me wear a shirt!


I am SO not kidding!  I wore my baggy lay-around-the-house-in yoga pants and a tee shirt, the height of work-out attire, I assure you.  They gave me a hospital gown and I was all - no, you're not gonna make me exercise without a bra, are you?  Uh .. yeah.  We are.
Oh man!!  I guess I should have known after looking for pictures and all the men I saw were shirtless.  The gown is only a nod to a woman's modesty in that situation.  Well, besides the fact that I would have run screaming from the room if I didn't at least have the gown.

Anyway.  It wasn't that big a deal really.  Kept my pants and shoes on, put the gown on the top half - a tech stuck the leads all over my chest and sides.  Then I rolled onto one side and the ultrasound lady used her wand with the ice cold gel to look at my heart in a resting state.

Next came the treadmill.

I was under the impression that I would be on the doggone thing for days or something but no, they pretty much put it on a hard core incline to start off and after the next bump to a higher incline and faster speed - I was huffing and puffing just fine, thank you very much.  It had to be less than 10 minutes.
And then the tricky part.  Let the gal know I was done so she could stop the treadmill so I could quickly jump off and hop back up on the bed and roll to my side again so the cold gelled wand could be used on me - under stress.  Stop!  Jump!  Roll!  Before your heart has any chance of slowing down.  Like mine was going to!

Once the ultrasound was taken they let me lay for a bit, took my blood pressure a couple more times and then let me put my dignity shirt back on and leave.
Not too horrible and not nearly as bad as I was expecting.  And I must have passed because they said if I didn't - they wouldn't have let me leave.  :)

From what I understand, sometimes they need to use contrast to get a better picture, but that wasn't necessary for me.  My only concern was the ultrasound girl guessed that I used to smoke, she could see it by looking at my lungs.  I'm supposed to have a chest x-ray anyway, so we'll find out what that's about, probably nothing.  But as far as tests go?  The stress test was not as difficult as some of the breathing tests they had me do at the pulmonologist's office.  So if you need to - go forth and test young man.  Woman.  Whomever.  


Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Stress test!

Mine is today.

This will be me.  
Except, I will be a woman. 
And I will definitely be wearing a shirt.

Wish me luck.


Monday, May 9, 2011

Maxine Monday

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Thursday, May 5, 2011

.. and my porridge is a-a-al-l-l-l-l gone!

Alternatively titled:  Y'know how when you're dieting they say you should cut everything in half?

Ever had sponge candy?  We called it sea foam candy when I was a kid.  It's crunchy and chewy yet light and airy.  Add a chocolate coating and you have heaven in an old fashioned treat. Yum!
Did you know you can buy stuff like that on Etsy?  Heh - with your choice of what kind of chocolate to coat it with even!  But y'know - I think I'm getting the message God!  I shouldn't be eating chocolate much less ordering wonderful sweets through the mail!  Got it loud and clear!

This box was on my porch when I got home from work today.  Didn't notice anything unusual until I drove past the porch to the spot where I park.  The box looked .. funny.  Ha ha ha.  Funny!  See the chewed spots?  I was a bit amused - until I got out of my car and saw a critter escaping from the porch to the yard and up a tree.  Cause then I saw the other end of the box.

That's Abby who wouldn't leave the box alone when I brought it into the house.  Let me guarantee you she could not have cared less about the treats in the box.  All she cared about was the wildlife she smelled on the box!  Will you look at that??  There were no Styrofoam peanuts on the concrete, but there were bits and pieces of cardboard strewn about.
When I got a closer look - I realized it wasn't only the outer box that had been breached.  Oh no!  This varmint had a sweet tooth, that's all I have to say!  There are actually 2 white gift boxes inside, and one of them - well I gasped when I saw the hole in it!  I don't know why I was surprised after seeing the state of the outside box but - c'mon!  This is a violation!  You don't just chew a woman's front porch delivery and then steal and eat her chocolate!  It's just not done!

Amazingly enough, one whole box was empty.  EMPTY!  This animal had been having a sweet feast on my porch for probably a good part of the afternoon.  It would have had to be practically sitting inside the big box with it's head stuck inside the smaller box - probably dizzy with the intoxicating aroma of dark chocolate and sponge candy!  I know I would've been.
I have to wonder if there was a crew - like a crew that chops a stolen car, or a pit crew at the races.  Because while not huge, that empty white box was at least the same size as this critter's body, minus tail of course.  And the contents probably weighed the same - do you think it could eat it's weight in chocolate covered goodness?  I mean just because I probably could, you wouldn't think a furry woodland creature would have that great a taste for it.

Of course it didn't end there.  Oh no .. if I hadn't pulled up when I did - the second box was about to be invaded too.  Oh does the horror never end??? 
I quickly looked around to see if there were anymore wild animals close by and did not see hide nor hair of the culprit(s)!  I managed to scoop up what was left of the package and bring it into the house.  Sigh-h-h.  I suspect however, that my perpetrator had moved on to find some drink to wash down all that chocolate. 

And I?  Opened up that second box and had a few pieces of lovely chocolate covered sea foam candy.  It was awesome.  Almost made me forget that I was just the victim of a heinous crime.  Mmmmm .. 

If you don't have ninja squirrels in your neighborhood, or are home during the day to receive a package, you really ought to try some homemade candy.  And do me a favor, have some for me, will you please? 


Wednesday, May 4, 2011

I think not!

Remember my little microscope?  I lost it.  Okay maybe saying 'lost' is not entirely accurate.  I put it away.  You know, put it away because everything should have a place so I found a place and put it there.  It didn't belong where it had been hanging out, even though I knew where it was when it was there.  Today I decided I needed it.

I must have walked around the house for at least 20 minutes, checking shelves and drawers and going back to the places I had discounted with "I wouldn't have put it there" time and again.  It was to the point where I was saying to myself "okay, think like me.  How do I think?  Where would I think was a good, logical place for a microscope?"  Not - "think like the cat, where would she have hidden my sock?"  Not - "think like my son, what would he have done with the barbecue sauce?"  No, "c'mon, think like me.  Like me, how would I think?"  Because of course I am a separate person from myself.

Clearly I think crazy.

Oh yeah, I did eventually find it.  It was in a place where obviously I had stashed it thinking - "this is a stupid place but it's not where it was before so it must be better."  And to continue that thought "and I'll remember it here."



Monday, May 2, 2011

Maxine Monday

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Sunday, May 1, 2011

I hate it when I break stuff.

When I was about 10, my dad lost his glasses tending to a fire in the burn pit behind our garage. Apparently they fell out of his front shirt pocket right into the fire.  That night he made a 9 hour round trip drive to Michigan and back, to see my Uncle Doc.  Uncle Doc was our eye doctor and we would all get eye exams when we went up to visit.  That's how badly he needed to replace those glasses.


Today I officially understand.  :(   My glasses got kind of wonky so of course I tried to bend them a bit, ever so carefully .. snap!  Yikes!  Hopping into the shower and getting ready to leave the house, I remembered the story.  And I get it!

My glasses were 're-strung', the wire that held the lenses in place on the bottom was changed, they were back in shape and shined up and looked brand -y -new in about 45 minutes!

Oh, and not only am I grateful that America's Best was so responsive (and open on Sundays) but I am also glad my uncle retired long ago.  I understand why my dad made the drive, just not sure I would have been willing to do it!