Happy 2010!

Here we are on the eve of a new year. I can already tell it's going to be a great one! No matter what you felt about 2009, it's behind us, only a memory. What we do now is move forward. I don't do resolutions per se, but I thought I'd impart some of my wisdom on you. Feel free to take one and make it your motto for 2010. My motto? I'm going with #5 & #10.

1. Never eat yellow snow.
2. Being a member of the "clean plate club" also make you a member of the "you've gained an extra 10 pounds club". It's ok to leave food on the plate if it will make you a healthier person.
3. Always have a designated driver and the number of a taxi service.
4. Remember...it's possible that the world will see your text messages - spell properly.
5. Shave, just in case. Hell, you never know!
6. Exercise more and if you shave you might get that opportunity (wink, wink).
7. Spend more time with your loved ones. Children grow up and friends move away. Love them while you can.
8. Use tote bags and recycle. Really. You need to.
9. Learn something new -- how to sew, cook a new dish, drink more, curse better -- just learn something new!
10. Give more than you receive -- hugs, kisses, love, time,

Happy 2010!


When My Phone Goes Ring-a-ling-a-ling...

I have to buy a new cell phone. My old one finally broke up with me.

This cell phone and I have been in a relationship for 2 years this December. I wasn't "in love" with the cell phone, I was comfortable. We did things together (like texting and making phone calls) and went places together (like my house and work) but there were things about our relationship that I didn't like. The reception sucks! I have to sit it "just so" on my desk or I will miss phone calls. And, the color was white. I have nothing against white phones, I just can't keep white anything clean. You will NEVER see me with a white purse, white shoes or white pants.

So my relationship with my cell phone was going great until a few months ago with it stopped working. I mean it stopping receiving or making phone calls and texts. I called the store and they said with my particular phone, as it gets older, has to be turned off and left off for 5 minutes. Turns out, I had to do this once a month. I don't mind doing favors for the one I like so I endured.

Then, a few months ago, the middle button (enter key) broke in half. How positively rude! But I can work around things like this. Relationships are about give and take. I used jewelry glue to glue the middle button (enter key) back together. It worked -- for two weeks. So, I glued it again. See, I have the need to make my (cell phone) relationships work as long as I possibly can (2 years, then I can get a free phone).

Well, yesterday the middle button (enter key) broke off completely. So in my innate wisdom I decided if jewelry glue works well, super glue will work better! Right?! Sure...IF YOU WANT THE BUTTON (ENTER KEY) TO STOP WORKING!

Yep! It stopping working. You wanna know what you can do when the middle button (enter key) stops working? Not a damned thing! Texting is difficult because your "slide" capability is gone and making calls is crap because you have to type in the phone number. I don't know your number!! It's in my phone!

So my (4) fans, SM has to go a buy a new phone. "Sure, that's easy," you say. Then that proves you never even knew me! I don't just go out a buy a phone; I have to do research. I have to watch some video's on the latest phone and use the compare feature on the website. Then I have to go inside the store and hold the phones in my hand. Then I have to go back home and see consumer reviews. Then I have to see which ones are free under my contract and then buy the ding dang thing (and remember, when I say "buy", I mean get free).

So tomorrow I have to go to the cell phone store and try out 2 new phones. No, no my dears, I will not tell you which ones until after I buy it. That's just how I am with my new boyfriend (cell phone). I want to pick him out, put him to my ear, try him for the afternoon and then tell you about him (that sounds bad-but in a good sort of way). Then I will unveil the new fellow that I have picked to be in my life, for the rest of my life (cell phone contract).


A New Day

This time of the year and my birthday always cause me to be reflective. A lot of things have happened in my life recently and cause my normal reflections to go on over drive. Today's reflection has to deal with each day being a new day. A new day to create new things, meet new people and make new memories. I'm glad that each day comes with a clean slate; a new notebook to add a new chapter to an already beautiful life.

I popped a random CD in the player last week and when I got in the car today, India Arie - A Beautiful Day was playing. Thanks JC -- that song was right on time.
"Early in the morning, It's the dawn of a new day, new hopes, new dreams, new ways."


The hillllls are alive, with the sound of muuuuusicccc!.

I am 2 minutes away from watching "The Sound of Music" so I don't have long. The Tall girl will be texting any minute now to make sure I'm watching (Mind Enhancement - #73 Watch 15 classic movies that I haven't seen).

I ran across a cute little piece of information that I've seen a million times. Tonight I actually read it. It's things you should know by 30. It's very good information and even if you are 50, you should still practice. I too have a long way to go.

It's actually 30 Things Every Woman Should Have and Should Know by the Time She's 30. The first half is the "should have". Tonight I am focusing on "should know". Let's have a refresher shall we?

By 30, you should know:

  • How to fall in love without losing yourself.
  • How you feel about having kids.
  • How to quit a job, break up with a man and confront a friend without ruining the friendship.
  • When to try harder and when to walk away.
  • How to kiss in a way that communicates perfectly what you would and wouldn’t like to happen next.
  • The names of: the secretary of state, your great-grandmother and the best tailor in town.
  • How to live alone, even if you don’t like to.
  • How to take control of your own birthday.
  • That you can’t change the length of your calves, the width of your hips or the nature of your parents.
  • That your childhood may not have been perfect, but it’s over.
  • What you would and wouldn’t do for money or love.
  • That nobody gets away with smoking, drinking, doing drugs or not flossing for very long.
  • Who you can trust, who you can’t and why you shouldn’t take it personally.
  • Not to apologize for something that isn’t your fault.
  • Why they say life begins at 30.



Day After Christmas Shopping

I woke up early. I braved the cold weather. I fought the crowds. I elbowed my way through the heathens all for....more blue Christmas lights and a big ben tree ornament. Yeah, I know. That's a pretty pathetic haul. I chalk it up to still being kinda tired.

Tired from what you ask? Well it takes energy to eat as much food as I did yesterday. I ate so much yesterday, I gained at least 6 more pounds, I just know it! Ma Mere made a pineapple pound cake and a 1,2,3,4 cake. Auntie made a chocolate cake and a vegan lemonilla cake (for The Arteest). Oh, and I ate real food too. Mac-n-cheese, cornbread dressing, salmon souffle, carrots, homemade cranberry sauce, fresh rolls, green beans....I'm sure I'm forgetting something. We ate at 3pm and I'm still full! (Oh, well, I just ate left overs so maybe that's why I'm full).

And, let's not forget, I was up until 1:00am Friday morning, helping Santa put out presents. I had to wrap a billion pairs of earrings and avert my eyes from the glittery tops and hats that were purchased. It's hard work wrapping up stuff for a teenage girl -- all that bubble bath and lip gloss! No, I still haven't recovered.

So, due to fatigue, I didn't stimulate the economy as much as I could have. Have no fear economy. I'm off work all of next week. I'm sure that I'll help put a dent in the deficit.


Happy Holidays!

Only 4 more hours until Santa taps on my front door, puts presents under the tree for The Princess and then tells me how much money I owe him.

Actually, I don't have to put the presents out tonight. The Princess doesn't play when it comes to sleep. She gets a full 10 hours whether you do or not. And, because she is on "vaca", she will stay up until 10pm and she'll sleep until 9am tomorrow. I can wake up at 7am and put her stuff out. I'm a lucky mommie!

And, I don't have to cook tomorrow! I mean, I'll cranberry sauce because it's what I do but we're going to my favorite Auntie's house and I'll take my rubbermaid with me. Ah, sweet bliss. Oh! Ma Mere is making peach pies and cakes. Don't worry, I've already started exercising.

And I picked up games for us to play tomorrow! Oh, my family loves games. I picked up "PayDay" and "Enga". I remember PayDay from childhood! it was my introduction into bill paying. Enga? Well, that's what it's called when you buy a cheap (but equally as fun) version of another game. $4.99 versus $19.99. YOU do the math.

In case I don't get to tell all 4 of my readers tomorrow, Merry Christmas, Happy Kwanzaa, Happy Hanukkah and Feliz Navidad. No matter what you celebrate or how you celebrate remember to kiss everyone and tell them that you love them. Then go get another piece of pie!!


Holiday Random Schnitzel

It's all done! I am ready to sit back and let the holiday season over take me with glee. All the purchases have been made. I've finished my 527th batch of cookies. I've almost completed my last day of work for the season. What's left to do? Nuthin! Nuthin at all!

I was very good this year. I started putting a few dollars away in October (after the annual Princess Birthday Bash) so once the shopping season hit, I was able to make my purchases with ease. I decided to only buy a few co-worker gifts and make cookies for everyone else. And, I saved my light work for today and I've spent the morning eating things with tons of sugar, drinking coffee and pretending to do that light work, just like everyone else. Oh happy day.

(Sorry, someone just brought in hot Krispy Kreme donuts. I'm just licking the glaze off my keyboard).

Actually, I lied int the first paragraph. I said there was nuthin left to do. Actually there is.

-- Wrap the gazillion things that I bought The Princess (and by wrap I mean put it in gift bags and put it under the tree).
-- Watch The Sound of Music, cause I told the Tall Girl I would (it better be good!).
-- Listen to Johnny Mathis 1 last time before putting him away for the season.
-- Drink 1 more pint of eggnog before retiring it for the season.
-- Stimulate the economy on the week of December 28th by purchasing next year's Christmas stuff at 50-75% off.
-- Prepare for the Twilight Zone New Years eve marathon.
-- Buy 1 more piece of exercise equipment because I have to remove the 10 damned pounds I added this past month!!

Fa la la la la, la la, la la. Now, excuse me. I have to take a two hour lunch (not really that different from any other day, huh?!).


Holidays for decorating

Edit - I created a "101 Things To Do In The Next 1001 Days" list. One of the things (#7 in the Arts & Crafts category) was "Decorate house for 75% of the major holidays in a year". These are not just any holidays. These are "decoratable" holidays. Yes, we all celebrate National Cocoa Day but we don't normally decorate for it (although I'll drink and extra cup to celebrate!).

This is just a very simply post. One of my thousands (3) fans asked what are the holidays that I consider appropriate for decorating. Here they are.

1. New Years Day
2. Valentines Day
3. Spring
4. Easter
5. Summer
6. 4th of July
7. Autumn
8. Thanksgiving
9. Winter
10. Christmas

The change of the seasons always means that I change out the decor in the front room. I change out pillows, table clothes and floral arrangements.

I always decorate for Christmas. Now I will have to add New Years things to the decorations that will already be up.

Valentines will mean decoration of hearts and kisses for The Princess (oh and Mr. Vampiro may get a kiss as well).

Easter will mean bunnies and eggs (and cadbury creamy goodness!!).

4th of July, red, white and blue and flags all over.

Thanksgiving means horns of plenty and pictures of turkeys (live turkeys...I'm a veg-head).

Christmas is easy. I've been doing that for years.

Oh, I know that 1 or 2 of these is a controversial decorating holiday. I have a kid. I look at the decorating part of this as something to do to bond with her. We understand the reasons for the seasons (she knows the true meaning behind Valentines Day). I figure this is an important one of the 101 in 1001 for me. The Princess will be going off to college in a few years (insert sad face with tears here) and other than the seasons, I will probably stop decorating for the holidays. I gotta enjoy it now.

Melted plastic and rum cookies.

Every day should be a new day with a new lesson learned. I learned a new lesson today. Do not place Rubbermaid container tops on the stove and then turn the oven on. The top will melt. I know, I know, it doesn't seem logical to me either. Indirect heat will melt a flimsy piece of plastic? If I pay $7 for a 26 piece set of plastic, 375 degrees of indirect heat (for 40 minutes) shouldn't melt it, even if the box tells you not to place in oven or on stove. Perhaps if they had pictures with a red "X" over it, I would have understood. (deep sigh).

I also learned that melted plastic, once cooled, will pull up off of a stove in a nice, deformed pattern that is ready for the trash. Nothing ruined, but of course, 24 cents worth of plastic (okay 48 cents...it was two tops that melted).


The baking began in earnest this weekend. Last week I made fudge. That’s not baking. This weekend I made muffins and almond crescent cookies. Except, I didn’t have any almond extract. I used rum extract instead. Do you think that will alter the taste? Yeah, probably. Do you think The Princess and I will care? Will it prevent us from eating them? No, probably not. It has to be a burnt, nasty mess for us to not at least taste them!

Fa la la la la – la la – la – la!

NOTE: the rum flavor made a great cookie. I cut the batch in half and ended up with 20 cookies. Next time I'll make the entire batch.


Books, books and more books

The Princess sure knows how to keep her mommie on her toes.

This morning I was driving her to school and she was telling me that her library book needed to be renewed. I told her that she was born into a family of readers and she should be able to read a "chapter book" in three weeks; that she should not have to renew it. I could read a book a week when I put my mind to it. She should be able to read one in three weeks.

"In fact for 2010 you are going to read 2 books a month,"I told her.

"Yes ma'am, you will have read 24 books by the end of December 2010."

She was very quiet in the backseat and I could see that her head was down. I took this as a sign of mommie victory. I smiled and continued the drive.

"Mommie?" she asked.

"Yes?" I answered.

"We're a reading family?"

"Yes we are."

"So I have to read 24 books in a year?"


"Did you know 24 X 2 = 48?"

"Yes." (The kid was throwing me off with math).

"So maybe you can read 48 books in a year."

"Huh?" I asked, stunned. What was she saying?

"If I read 24 books before you read 48 books, you take me to dinner and if you read 48 books before I read 24 books, I'll take you to dinner."

I looked in the rear view mirror. The smile on her face filled the back seat. She had challenged me to a duel! I know I said that I could read a book a week. That didn't mean that I wanted to. But what choice did I have now? I couldn't walk away from a 48 book challenge!

"Fine. That's a bet."

Apparently I'll be reading a lot in 2010. I have a bet to win.

I think The Princess stole my mommie manual and tricked me.


The 80's are calling...they want their stuff back.

I can't do it. I lived in the 80's. I can't wear the clothes again!

Today I saw Michael Jackson high-water pants with white socks and black loafers; a sweater dress with leggings pantyhose and a side waist, sparkly belt; and forest green corduroy pants...on a man.

I understand. The 80's were great! Hell, I was the 80's! I wore the trends, from Madonna to Janet. I had florescent socks. I sprayed way more Aquanet than a black girl should. I had a hoop earring with a key dangling from it. Bangles? I bet I had more on my arms than you did! When VH1 shows "I love the 80's" I am all there! But I can't live the clothes again. I won't.

I did try on a cream pair of corduroy pants this weekend. I ran out of the dressing room screaming and had to be sedated. I purchased a muted green jacket -- muted, not lime. But that's it. That's as far as I will go.

But you...you go ahead and do what makes you happy. Let's just follow a few simple rules, ok?

1. Michael pulled off high-waters. I don't think you should try.

2. Corduroy pants are not meant for grown a$$ men. Boys under 10, fine. Grown men over 30, let's not.

3. Tights are thicker than pantyhose. If you can clearly see your skin beneath your tights, you have on pantyhose and you need to wear a dress/shirt that comes to your knees. I do not want to see your arse covered in thin hosiery.

4. Side ponytails are a no-no. No one looks good with one except the girl from Napoleon Dynamite and even that is questionable.

5. Stirrup pants? Really? Really?

Let's work together people. Let's honor the 80's the way that they should be honored...as a special time in our lives. Let's not bring it back in a tasteless, tacky way. Put down the excess lace and move away from the crimping iron. We caused the hole in the ozone with the hairspray. Let's not make the sun cry with the amount of purple eyeshadow we are wearing!


“The time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time.” Bertrand Russell

I spent the better part of the day blog surfing. Awesome way to waste a Sunday if I do say so myself. The Princess was working on her "What Do Bones Do," project so I had to be 'at the ready' to assist. She didn't need much help so I was able to happily glide from one blog to another. I enjoyed myself but I noticed some stuff.

1. Mommie blogs and food blogs must make up 99.99% of the blogosphere. Everywhere I turned there was another one. Some were cute, some were sweet but the best ones were total cut ups! They were moms and dads like myself, that don't waste time talking about our perfection. Instead they talk about the drama and the trials of being a parent. I must have added 20 blogs to my reader; I see those 72 books that I need to read, not getting read!

2. American bloggers in London or any other European city make my day. The ones that talk in depth about museums and restaurants are so wonderful! If people go into details about their day, using European locations as points of reference, I feel as if I'm really there! If they show you how to cook food from that country, I find it delightful. If they use both American and European measurements, I melt. It makes me feel as if I'm in the city that birthed me (ok, in my mind I'm from London. Sorry Louisiana).

3. Food bloggers make me hungrier than I already am. Food bloggers always take pretty pictures. It makes me want to drool. I added 15 things to my collection of "stuff I have to make right now". Sure, I'll only make 1 of those things ever, but it's nice to window shop.

4. Most bloggers pick a topic and stay there. There are a few like me, that cook and rant and talk about my really exciting life but most have decided on one thing... or they have more than one blog. Sorry, I just barely have time to talk to these 4 people. I can't talk to another 4 on a different blog!

Yeah, yeah...I could have read a book or gone outside and jogged or washed dishes but I decided not to. Instead I peeked into lives, added comments where I needed to but mostly laughed because almost everyone that blogs is the same -- they are people that don't think they are very funny but in reality they are hilarious.

Keep it up people. You help to make my Sunday shine!


Cinnamon Syrup!

Guess what I made today?! Yep, cinnamon syrup!

Anyone that knows me knows that I have coffee every morning and I love cinnamon flavored syrup. Well, I've been purchasing bottles of syrup for years and using it sparingly for fear that I would run out and wouldn't find a "famous Seattle house of coffee" soon enough that sold the flavor tha I like. Or, I'd pay $5 a day for a large cinnamon something-something-something latte.

Well, the economy doesn't really let me drink a $5 coffee each day and feel good about it. And, even though the purchasing of syrup helps, I'd rather spend even less and not have to drive 20 miles out of my way to find it (I know it's odd but not all "coffee houses" sell the cinnamon flavor).

In my desperation (I was down to two day's worth or syrup!!) I looked on the internet and found a site that told me how to make my own cinnamon syrup. I needed to make a simple syrup (using brown sugar instead of granulated sugar) and steep cinnamon sticks while it cooks for 10 - 15 minutes. Then let it cool and wha-la! Cinnamon syrup.

Oh de-lish! Oh happy day! I can make my own cinnamon syrup? I really can have it all! Ok, maybe that's extreme but whatever...

Eye Crust (part II)

In case you were wondering, yes, it was pink eye. "Dr. Ma Mere" was wrong. No worries. She's been my personal physician all of my life. She comes cheap (free) and she's okay when I tell her that her diagnosis was wrong. She didn't offer to make peanut butter cookies for me but I can't complain because she made me my very own sweet potato pie for Thanksgiving.

I woke up with super runny eyes Monday. Honestly, I couldn't see when I woke up. I won't go into specifics by my eyes were so crusted over it was ridiculous (ok, so I went into specifics). I called my doctor (I LURVE my medical plan!) and got it confirmed... "conjunctivitis". After 5 days of drops three times a day, my eyeballs are crystal clear with minimal eye boogers. Thank goodness.

Because I had gookie gook in my eyes for the first three days, I didn't feel like typing (which was ok because my eyeballs hurt too much to type anyway. But now I'm all better and in search of something super fascinating to talk to you about (even though eye boogers sounds fascinating to some).

I have become more aware of my hands near my eyes. I use tissue to wipe my eyes (never, never my finger or hand) and I sanitize a lot. Hey, my eyes are important. I have to take care of them. AND I have to buy new eyeliner. Doesn't sound too bad huh? Well, I keep an average of 5 eyeliners handy! 1 at work, 1 in my purse and 3 of different colors in the bathroom. I have to dump them all! I sure hope my brand of eye makeup is on sale tomorrow!