Monday, April 28, 2008

Blessed and Lucky

There are so many things I'm thankful for in my life and for some reason I'm feeling an abundance of blessings, almost undeserving. Tom and I will be celebrating our 10 year wedding anniversary in just a few short weeks and though we've had some bumps along the road we are in a very solid place now and I can't even put into words how happy this makes me. Tonight when he came home we sat across from each other on the kitchen countertops indian style, sipping our glasses of wine, Wrigs laying beneath us and Chum by my side. We talked about the typical day to day stuff and then some other more eventful things and as I sat there talking and listening (and of course talking some more) I felt so at peace with my life, a sense of calm like nothing else in the world matters. I'm guessing this is what people experience when they visit the Taj Mahal or similar places of incredible profundity but tonight in my very own kitchen I experienced my own degree of personal serenity. And it didn't cost me a dime.

This is where I need to be.


Check this out. You will laugh.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

60 minutes I'll never get back

60 Minutes is boring as all hell.

They're baaaaack

Because of the way our demented cat chooses to eat his food, we end up getting ants. The pics below are not of the actual ants but of the food that Chumley scoops out of his bowl and scatters across the countertops thus attracting ants from the windowsill in warm weather. I have to obsessive-compulsively swipe down the counter every couple of hours in order to keep the ants at bay. And as soon as I'm down swiping, Chumley's right back there scooping.

Below is an old pic that was taken the day after we put our house on the market in Minnesota. Tom got the call to come out west, and within days the house was up for sale. As soon as that sale sign was staked in the yard, we were not welcomed with potential buyers, but an infestation of GIANT black carpenter ants. And they were headed straight for Chum's food bowl. Here's a pic of one of the bastards carrying a kernel of Chum's food across the kitchen floor back to the queen who was living under our 3 season porch and was supposedly the size of my shoe. (click on the pic to enlarge...if you dare)

I imagine once they returned to the queen's palace the conversation went something like this. These ants were everywhere and needless to say our house did not sell. We ended up taking a buy out from Tom's company after 6 months.

Since there are no plans for us to move anytime soon, we're stuck using ant traps. Grants traps seem to work the best in case anyone else is having issues.

Play Colorwar

Someone sent this to me via e-mail and I think it's such a great idea. I want to use a picture of Wrigley as a puppy and then re-create the pose present day. Problem is I have soooo many pics to chose from!! I'll update this post once I decide which one to use.

p.s. I have no idea why it's called colorwar.

I love cherry tomatoes

That's all.


For some odd reason, I'm not particularly annoyed with having to watch golf today. Not sure why...

(that's Adam Scott, in case anyone was wondering)

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Sleep Talker

Tom and I were at our friend's place in Manhattan Beach pretty late last night. Didn't get home til almost 2am. We went straight to bed and at 4:30am Chumley starts his late night/early morning bellowing. I really have to capture this audio on film because it is sooo loud and distinct, you must hear it to believe. I'm sure other cat owners can relate. So Tom tosses and turns while Chum hollars and moans and while Tom is still asleep he sighs deeply and says softly, "Nut house." I asked him this afternoon if he remembers this and he said had no clue. He talks in his sleep from time to time and can even carry on a conversation. I'd say about 75% of the time he jibber jabbers about something golf related. It's probably worth capturing this on audio too.

That's My Momma

My mom was supposed to be here already but her flight this morning from Chicago was cancelled due to weather and possible SNOW!!! She is soooo ready for winter to be over and who can blame her. Her car got stuck in the last snowstorm (less than a month ago!) and at 73 years old the last thing I want to hear is that my mom is pushing her car out of a snow bank. Breaks my heart. Though she doesn't love real hot weather either (today it's 91 degrees but next week it's supposed to stay in the 60's) at least here I can guarantee her a break from snow. She's now re-booked on an evening flight and if all goes well, will arrive later tonight.

I'm anxious to hear about my mom's flight because whenever she travels she always meets some very interesting people and usually ends up giving them something whether it's food she brought on the plane, a book she's reading, or even an article of clothing (she's not a stripper I swear).

The year we lived in Minnesota, my mom flew in for Thanksgiving. She sat next to a young man who was a singer, performing in various places in the midwest and had never been to Minnesota. My mom was appalled that this young man did not have a scarf and hat. She asked him if he would buy a set at the airport before he stepped outside into the cold. He said that he would but my mom was skeptical. So what does she do? She takes off her scarf that she's wearing (which was one of her favorites) and hands it over to him. He wraps it around his neck and hugs her.

I remember waiting with Tom at the baggage area for my mom to arrive. We see her in the distance with this young man's arms around her and they are laughing and carrying on like old pals. I'm not really surprised by this but Tom asks, "Is she bringing a friend to Thanksgiving?" Which is something she would always do when we were kids, but half the time she didn't know the people. They would be people she'd meet at the grocery store, buying a one-serving turkey dinner, someone she met through volunteering at the hospital who didn't have family or even someone who didn't have a home. Often times our Thanksgiving table looked like the island of misfit toys, but that's another story. So here comes my mom and her new found friend. She introduces him to us and says, "Hi kids! This is Steven, he didn't have a scarf!" I reply, "Hi, I'm Laura and I do have a scarf", as though that's the standard greeting and response. Then Steven tells us the story about Mom insisting he take her scarf... her luxuriously thick, hand knitted, cashmere blend scarf. I was wearing a cheapy yarned scarf that I had knitted and I turned to my mom and said let me just give him mine instead. My mom shushed me and said no and that she didn't want to make a big deal out of it, it's just a scarf. She hugged her friend goodbye and we all went on our merry way.

That Christmas I knitted my mom a scarf just like the one she gave away. I attached a note to the scarf that said, "Please don't give me away to strangers." She LOVED that scarf sooo much and wore it everywhere. Then a couple years later, she left it somewhere, couldn't remember where, and was in tears when she called to tell me about it. So the next Christmas I knitted her another one with a note that said, "Please don't lose me."

I think she has yet to take it off.

Friday, April 25, 2008


I had to Google Map an address in Beverly Hills and I didn't know the zip so I was about to do a zip code look up when all of the sudden this popped into my head. Duh!

Did you hear about talks of a remake of this show? The kids from the original series are now the parents of high schoolers. How's that for feeling like an old fart!

Thursday, April 24, 2008


I'm only 15 minutes into tonight's episode of The Office and it's one of the best ones ever!!! OMG Jim's phonecall is hysterical!!! Anyone else see this!?!?!

The Dollhouse

When I was a little girl, my Dad found this old, rickety dollhouse (nothing like the above pic) at a garage sale and brought it home to me one random Saturday afternoon. I had always wanted a dollhouse but this one was old and chipped and dingy, and looked like a box with a few holes for windows, not exactly what I had in mind. He said that together, we would re-model this house and make it just like new. (My dad LOVED home improvement projects no matter how minuscule). So one summer when my grandparents came to visit, the 3 of us, My Dad, My Grandpa and 6 year old me, set up shop in the garage to re-model the dollhouse. We worked on it for almost a week. I remember starting early in the morning and not finishing until it was time for dinner. It was hot and my mom would come out with trays of lemonade and she'd smell the turpentine and whatever other chemicals were emitting from the stain and paint we were using and she'd say, "Laura get out of this garage right now! I do NOT want you inhaling these fumes!" And I'd tell her that "I have to be here, it's MY house!!! (biiiatch!)" Kidding about the bitch part. Or maybe not. I was a beast.

By the time the house was finished I couldn't even remember what it looked like before. I kid you not, we could have been on a show called "Extreme Home Makeover Teeny Tiny edition." We sanded the floors, laid down little tiles (or carpet, depending on the room) and each room had themed wallpaper. When it was all finished I was so excited to put some people inside but my Barbies were too big so I used these Popeye and Olive Olye dolls, a bendy Pink Panther and a couple Corn Husk Dolls. They were a motley crew but they lived in the house until we set out to find a more socially acceptable family to call it home.

Every birthday, holiday or "just because" gift centered around this dollhouse. I'd get pictures for the walls, vases for the tables, toilets, a piano, even mini food for the kitchen. I loved the little plastic turkeys and canned goods (until my dog got a hold of them and chewed them all to bits). I also kept adding people to the house, sort of like one big happy extended family (or nowadays it would be more like some creeped out religious cult) but each time a new member was introduced to the family, we'd throw a welcome party. Could explain why I love parties so much today.

I had this house for about 2 years and then one day, right before Summer break my Dad came home from work and called for me to come outside. It was warm and still sunny so I thought he wanted to play catch (which we did most warm nights he was home). But when I stepped outside I saw his friend's truck in the driveway and my Dad led me around to the back. He opened the hatch and sitting inside was a gigantic 3 story colonial style dollhouse (just like the above pic, except it was yellow), which looked like it should be on the cover of Home and Garden magazine.

The house was huge, the exterior was a pale yellow siding with white trim and black shutters and had a platform built all around the front and sides to form a yard, with fake grass and gas street lamps. And on the inside every room had its own unique light fixture that was wired to a battery box in the attic so each room had working lights! The doors even had little brass knobs and some rooms had window treatments. I could not believe my eyes, I had never even known that such a house like this existed. It was the Cadillac of all dollhouses. Speaking of Cadillacs it was too big to fit in my Dad's trunk so that is why he asked his friend with the truck to drive it over. So while we're all standing outside admiring this amazing architecture, my Dad asked, "What do you think?" Without a second to spare I shouted back in his face, "I HATE IT! I HATE IT! I HATE IT!!!! GET RID OF IT!!!" and then I ran back into the house crying my eyes out.

Looking back, my Dad's friend must have thought I was the most spoiled brat who ever roamed this earth. Even so, he helped my Dad carry the house into our house as I sat on the couch seething at them both. After his friend left, my Dad was FURIOUS with me. He yelled and demanded to know why I didn't like this house that he had been looking for YEARS to get me!?!

Between snot filled sobs I told him that I didn't want a new house, I loved the one I had. His tone completely changed. He went from angry faced to holy shit face. I'll never forget that face. He said that I didn't need to give up the other house but that I could instead have 2 houses to play with, we could make a neighborhood. I remember thinking to myself, these two houses don't even belong in the same zip code. He lugged the house upstairs to my bedroom and wedged it next to my existing "vintage" home. I didn't like it one bit. I asked that he take it downstairs to the basement. He kept trying to reason with me and I wasn't having any of it. After his 3rd or 4th attempt I finally lost it and started screaming and crying all over again. There was another blow out and my Dad stormed out of my room almost dropping the dollhouse on his way down the stairs. I was so afraid he was going to fall down the stairs and hurt himself. This house already caused a lot of pain, I didn't want it to crush my Dad.

That dollhouse sat in our basement unoccupied the entire summer. I refused to look at it. When friends would come over my Dad would say, "Go show them your dollhouse." And I'd march them upstairs to my bedroom. He'd say, "NO!! The other one, come on!" And he'd take them downstairs and once they saw the house their eyes would bug out. They'd say, "You didn't tell us about this!!!" I'd roll my eyes and leave them to gawk as my Dad tinkered around with the lights and doorbell.

For my birthday which was the week of Thanksgiving, I received even more dollhouse fixtures and furniture even though my vintage house was full. It was starting to look like the set of Sanford and Son because I refused to put the new stuff into the new house since I was well aware that's what my parents were hoping I would do. Until...Christmas came around. A couple of weeks before Christmas my parents found a lighted tree that plugged into a socket in the living room of the new house. Now that I think of it, they probably had this custom made. With all the lights out in the house and just the tree lights flickering, it was a magical scene. We admired the tree from all angles and I loved to look inside the living room from the outside window. But that's all that was in this house, one lighted tree. Slowly I started to add a few things. A couch here, a table there, a toilet upstairs. It was sparse and I never wanted my parents to see me playing with this house so I would sneak downstairs when they weren't aware. And then on Christmas eve my sister and I were always allowed to open one present under the tree and it was our choice to pick which one. I opened up a dollhouse family of four with a pet cat. I remember taking out each person and playing with them right there under our Christmas tree for most of the night. I tied nooses around their necks and hung them in the tree as ornaments. When that got boring I decided it was time for them to see their new home. I headed down to the basement and sat each one down around the lighted Christmas tree. The cat too.

I'll never forget that Christmas. By the next morning the other 18 family members living in the old house had relocated to their new address. It was one big happy melting pot of a family. About a month or so later I gave my vintage house away to a friend of mine who had wanted a dollhouse for Christmas but didn't get one. It felt good to give it away to someone I knew would appreciate it. At least for a little while. Less than 6 months later as my mom and I were driving by her house, there sat MY dollhouse at the end of her driveway waiting for trash pick up. I was devastated. But I didn't give it away with the intention of getting it back one day so it had been hers to do what she wanted. I learned that lesson at an early age. Never give something away that you might want back. And this goes beyond dollhouses.

A couple weeks before my Dad passed away we talked about this dollhouse story. I apologized for being such a beast about the whole thing and for all the screaming and yelling (on my part). He said he didn't remember it that way. He said I was just "passionately loyal". I never really looked at it that way as a child but based on how I live my life today it makes perfect sense. Even if you have to yell sometimes.


Company Policy

I'm sure you guys have seen this circulating via e-mail a while back, but it's worth another read. I've actually had nightmares about the "Bathroom Break" policy. Couldn't you totally see Michael Scott implementing this policy in his office?

Dress Code:
You are advised to come to work dressed according to your salary.
(1) If we see you wearing Prada shoes and carrying a Gucci bag, we will
assume you are doing well financially and therefore do not need a raise.
(2) If you dress poorly, you need to learn to manage your money better, so
that you may buy nicer clothes, and therefore you do not need a raise.
(3) If you dress just right, you are right where you need to be and
therefore you do not need a raise.

Sick Days:
We will no longer accept a doctor's statement as proof of sickness. If
you are able to go to the doctor, you are able to come to work.
Personal Days:
Each employee will receive 104 personal days a year. They are called
Saturdays & Sundays.

Bathroom Breaks:
Entirely too much time is being spent in the toilet. There is now a
strict three-minute time limit in the stalls. At the end of three
minutes, an alarm will sound, the toilet paper roll will retract, the
stall door will open, and a picture will be taken. After your second
offense, your picture will be posted on the company bulletin board
under the "Chronic Offenders" category. Anyone caught smiling in the
picture will be sectioned under the company's mental health policy.

Lunch Break:

(1) Skinny people get 30 minutes for lunch, as they need to eat more, so
that they can look healthy.
(2) Normal size people get 15 minutes for lunch to get a balanced meal to
maintain their average figure.
(3) Chubby people get 5 minutes for lunch, because that's all the time
needed to drink a Slim-Fast.

Thank you for your loyalty to our company. We are here to provide a
positive employment experience. Therefore, all questions, comments,
concerns, complaints, frustrations, irritations, aggravations,
insinuations, allegations, accusations, contemplations, consternation
and input should be directed elsewhere.

The Management

Chumley's Breath... the barometer we use for all things relating to smell on land, air or sea. For example, if I'm nervous that the cream for my coffee has gone bad I'll hand it to Tom and ask, "Does this smell funny to you?" He'll say, "It's not even close to Chumley's breath, I'd say it's still good." Or when we're traveling and one of us uses the airplane bathroom first, the standard question upon returning to the seat is, "How bad was it? Is it safe for me to go or does it smell like Chumley's breath?" Or just the other day we found this adorable new cafe just a couple miles away but there was this odd smell (that only I could smell, Tom's olfactory nerves are not nearly as powerful) so Tom says describe it. I said, "It smells sort of like an old wet sponge." He said, "Just a moldly sponge or more rancid like Chumley's breath?" I don't think the people sitting next to us cared for our conversation but I'm sure they smelled it too.

So when we're cleaning out Chum's nasty dumps which often times smell worse than his breath, we'll say "God this stinks worse than Chumley's breath!!"

No wonder the cat hates me. I don't know why I just posted this. Probably because I just cleaned the litter box and it was pretty bad.

***update 6:35pm: I just heated up the last of the Chicken Masala from the other night and let Chum lick the plate clean. You can guess where we'll both be in about 25 minutes.***

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

this just in...

I've been waiting on a pretty important call for the last 2 hours and of course the phone rings while I'm "indisposed" (leftovers from last night) and it's the ONE time I didn't bring the phone into the bathroom with me. I rush outta the bathroom, pants not quite pulled all the way up so I'm only able to shimmy a few inches at a time and then have to hop over Wrigs (who's sprawled out in the hallway) and trip, my face only a few inches from the ground. I grab the phone in its 6th or 7th ring and the caller ID shows "Nordstrom" so it's only Tom (though still important) but not the phonecall I risked my life to answer. I was a little worked up so I instantly start spewing without even saying hello...

"Oh my GOD! I f*cking rush to the phone in mid-dump pants around the ankles and it's YOU!?!"

There is complete silence on the line.

Then I say calmly, as my heart has now stopped, "Hello?"

" name is Leah, I'm calling from Philosophy at Nordstrom. May I speak with Laura?"


I should have just said, "Sorry, wrong number" or started to speak in a foreign tongue but the blood started rushing out of my head so fast, I just said, "This is her."

What a f*cking mortifying lesson to learn. I will NEVER do this again. I will always say hello first.

She informed me about an event in May that I had expressed an interest in attending and was very sweet and polite. When we were about to hang up I told her that I thought it was my husband (who also works for Nordstrom) and we like to play these silly jokes when we call each other.

Even if that was the case, we still sound like a bunch of sick perverts. 

And didn't I just say in my last post that I'm going to try and be more feminine??? I'm off to a great start.

so much for trying

It's obvious I can't just quit cold turkey when it comes to posting these sort of updates, so why bother holding back? There's no denying it, that's who I am and I have issues with my bowels. Sounds like an AA greeting doesn't it? Though this would be called PA (poopers anonymous) "Hi, my name is Laura and I can't stop shitting." (other poopers reply in unison) "We love you Laura!" 

Tom says to me this morning as he's coming out of the bathroom and while I'm still in bed (not sleeping but not quite ready to put my feet to the ground just yet):

"Didn't I just put a new roll of toilet paper in there?" 

me: "Um hello??? INDIAN food!!!

Tom: "But seriously Laura, you used almost an entire roll?!?"

me: "I'm quite proud of that, actually."

Tom: "I married a dude." 

That seems to be his stand-by response for a lot of things lately. Perhaps I need to "fem" myself up a bit. Maybe I'll try closing the bathroom door next time.

I'll admit, he does put up with a lot. But I do too. He says things sometimes that aren't always so nice. He may not be happy that I'm posting this so if he ever reads this and gets mad I'll take it down. Last night I was IMing with a friend of mine but still carrying on a half assed conversation with Tom and he was getting annoyed. So he says (completely serious):

"I'm going to shove that computer so far up your ass that you'll be able to hit the space bar with your nipple."

Anatomically speaking, I don't think that's possible but I shut down my computer, just to be safe.

(And yes that picture is quite disturbing I know. Don't ask how I found it.)

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

just sittin' here

I'm trying reeeeally hard to refrain from posting any more bathroom episodes and believe me it's not easy (especially when I had Pastrami on Rye for lunch, half a box of Hot tamales and a full on Indian dinner) so instead I'll just steal this from Mindy's blog.

You can guess where I'll be spending the rest of my evening...

***update 10:35: I'm polishing off the rest of the Hot tamales. Yes, I know. I have a death wish.

Monday, April 21, 2008

I'm a Roomba Advisor!!

How thrilled was I when I got this email today...(click to enlarge, it's too tiny)

I mean, are you kidding me???? Have they read the e-mails I've sent to them??? Though this is addressed to Tom (we used his name to register) I will be the one sitting amongst this very dignified panel of vacuum connoisseurs. Perhaps I'll introduce myself with a simple video or poem about the Roomba...

"Roomba Roomba on the wall...

deep breaths...

I wonder if I'll get to attend any fancy pants i-Robot banquets or vacuum conventions. I know they said the surveys are web-based but I'm going to push for a face to face round table of sorts with all the other "diverse and dynamic" Roomba advisors so we can hammer out these issues with the Roomba. the very least, take a hammer to the Roomba.

Here's my list of action items:

1) Get the Roomba to work.
2) Change the damn lady's voice on the recording!!! (Maybe use a cartoon character like a Smurf or Chipmunk or give you the option to record your own message of doom).
3) Install some sort of mechanical arm device so when it gets wedged underneath furniture it can jack itself up and free itself.
4) Make it fire retardant because that thing will eventually blow itself up (on the rare occasion the motor runs for more than 10 minutes).
5) Install some sort of scented spraying device to eliminate nasty burning rubber smell.
6) And fix that little spindly spider arm brush on the side that keeps snapping off!

Oh and I'd also like to let them know that they are turning this world into a bunch of lazy asses. Have you seen the latest? The i- Robot Looj? Next thing you know these things will be cooking dinner and sleeping with our husbands. Ok now that I think of it, I may need to add that as an action item.

I think I'm going to sign all my e-mails like this...

Kind Regards,
2008 Roomba Advisory Board Panel Member


This is quite an honor.

Shopping Cart Chronicles

It happened people!! My first REAL LIFE exchange with an evil-doer-no-cart-returner!!! I literally just got home and rushed over to my lap top to type it all out since it's fresh in my mind. God, I'm a dork.

Anyway I'm in a hurry so here goes...

I went to Target for a few essentials. Left the store with 2 HEAVY bags but decided to go cart less because I parked on the other side of the shopping complex, not even close to the Target aisles so I would have had to meander my way through many lanes and aisles of traffic so screw that. As I'm exiting the store a woman proceeds to push her cart to the far end of the outside of the store, on the corner of the sidewalk and just leaves it right there!! Not even balancing up against anything. Not only that, she had half a watered down ICED COFFEE from Starbucks still in the cup holder!!! So I thought ok maybe she's just leaving it here while she runs into another store so let me just wait. Nope. She turns away from the cart and walks away. We are now facing each other and I say very sweetly, "You left your coffee in there." She says, "Oh. I'm finished with it." OMG I could feel my blood boiling. There was sooooooo much I wanted to say people and maybe I should have been more upset but all that came out was, "Oh...really? Hmm." That's it, no roundhouse kick or nothin'! But, what I did do was hoist up my purse and heavy bags and walked over to the cart and picked up her nasty ass slimy Iced Coffee and then walked very fast in her direction (actually catching up with her so she could see me) to the cement trash barrel outside. I plopped it into the bin making sure to give it extra force so she heard it. She did because she looked right at me when I did this and instead of going ape shit and ranting and raving at her sloth like behavior, I just smiled at her. Then, I walked back to the cart (I was on a mission) and wheeled it back inside the store. I watched as the evil doer got into her vehicle and was not the least bit surprised when she climbed into her fricking house-boat sized Hummer.

Ok so I'm thinking the next time this happens I want to follow these people and get a picture of them (like a mug shot) and their car with their license plates. Then I want to post the pics up on the board at Target or grocery stores (sort of like a most wanted billboard) but it would be alerting all shoppers to beware of these Lazy Ass Non Cart Returners!

I have a feeling I'm probably going to get my ass kicked very soon.

and real quick, I just bought a bottle of Dove's new Go Fresh Energizing body wash. The grapefruit and lemongrass scent is delicious! It's summer in a bottle. And the 24 ounce size is on sale for $4.99 so this should last all summer (and then some considering how infrequently I bathe).

Sunday, April 20, 2008

I've got a secret...

And it sucks.

So I bought the book The Secret early last year and got about half way through it when I became a bit skeptical about some of the concepts and messages. It was my intention to read it again (not where I left off but starting fresh from page 1) this time with more of an open minded approach. And again, not going so well, especially after just finishing A New Earth. I grasped several of the key concepts from that book, a few being: stop thinking so much, happiness and joy is within you, let go of the ego, money and material things do not equal happiness, etc. etc. So while reading The Secret I find it somewhat shallow when the author places so much significance on money and material possessions. The underlying theme in this book is that if you visualize and focus on money, your dream car, your favorite clothes, or even your "perfect partner", one day it will all be yours! And while having enough money does reduce certain worries and stresses in your life, it will never have the power to make you happy and at peace with who you are in this world. But even so I continued to read.

I hit another stumbling block when I got to the topic of weight loss. According to The Secret, for one to become thin they must "think thin thoughts." Really? That's all it takes? Then how does one explain the 1+billion overweight human beings on this earth? Now speaking personally I've never had issues with weight BUT I still have a hard time with this one because there are medical conditions and/or genetic reasons people are predisposed to weight gain. But according to this book, just think thin thoughts and you'll start to change what the universe brings your way which will ultimately result in weight loss. I can even accept the fact that thinking positive thoughts about a healthy weight (rather than focusing on the negative) would cause one to consciously become more aware of their eating habits and motivate one to exercise but even then there are still people who will struggle with this for the rest of their lives no matter how many slim fasts they drink or stair masters they climb. I guess it's safe to assume the author never had a weight problem because it seemed she trivialized this very complex, sensitive subject. But again, I forged ahead.


I read the chapter on health. According to The Secret, someone who is diagnosed with a terminal disease only has to "think perfect health" and disease will not able to live inside their body. Wow, sure wish I had this book a few years ago. Here's an exact quote (page 130 in case anyone would like to follow along)

"Think thoughts of perfection. Illness cannot exist in a body that has harmonious thoughts."

and on the following page...

"You can think your way to the perfect state of health, the perfect body, the perfect weight, and eternal youth. You can bring it into being, through your consistent thinking of perfection."

And this is where I stopped reading. I'm guessing here, but I have a hunch this author (or more specifically the people who wrote some of these quotes) have never had to witness a child, sibling, parent or close loved one suffer the devastation of a terminal illness. I could really go into a lot more detail here but I think I've rambled on long enough. Perhaps I may skip along to the next chapter or so, or I may end up tossing this book into yet another box of closet purges. Or I may just "think" this book is terrific and read it over and over again and again.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

My DIY project for the weekend

Turning a plain wood console table similar to this:

into this:

Well not exactly this (I'm not about to whittle the table into 3 separate mini tables) but I am going to crackle paint it! (but I'm not painting it white, I'm going with red - so really the picture above has absolutely nothing to do with this project!)

I'll take my own pics during the process.

Tom in 35 years...

(btw, this guy really exists.)

Friday, April 18, 2008

Google Searches

So here are a few google search words from this evening...

I often laugh at these because typically they involve "poo" or "bathroom episodes" or in today's case "diarrhea". And I laughed out loud when I saw "pube head." But then when I read the third entry from the bottom, my heart sank. I'm praying for the person who googled those words and hope that their dog is not suffering.

STILL not giving up on this stuff!

***update II: I just couldn't stay away from this stuff. I made another tall Iced Coffee that's currently sitting atop my kitchen counter. I haven't even taken my first sip and my tummy is already starting to rumble. I just can't quit you Nescafe! I just can't!!! Oh and by the way, I made a FULL serving this time. What's the difference right? It's all going to come out in less than an hour anyway!***

***update: So I posted this at 8:38 pm and it's now 9:43 and it's obvious my stomach can't handle this sh*t either. Thankfully, I'm in for the night and we've got plenty of T.P. I spend so much time in this here bathroom that I'd like to invest in one of these. And after this post I'm going to try and not broadcast these episodes as much. I need to at least try and maintain some semblance of decorum here. (yeah right).***

I can't just stop with the iced coffees (even though McDonald's is definitely out) and yesterday I came across this Iced Coffee Syrup by Nescafe that you pour straight into cold milk, add ice and voila! Instant home-made Iced Coffee! I just finished a full glass and guess what?!? So far so good! I bought the Chocolate Mocha flavor and only used half the suggested serving so maybe if I ween my way into this gradually, my stomach will be able to tolerate it.

Eric from Blogger *update*

Today's Blogger Buzz:

Sorry to see you go Eric but we need our updates!!!

So how much longer is this guy going to be up on Blogger Buzz??

We get the point - You did great things for Blogger, we're sad to see you go, yet happy for your new endeavors. It's been a slice.

Can we please have our updates now?!?!

Quake in the Midwest

So there was a 5.2 earthquake in Southern Illinois. That's a big deal.

This article mentioned that the skyscrapers in Chicago were rattling. Really? Almost 250 miles away??? I guess our buildings here are built differently than in Chicago so I'm sure it's possible. And a 5.2 isn't exactly small potatoes.

I'm addicted to this page, which is also on my links list. Southern California faults have been eerily quiet lately so maybe something's going on down under.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

What's Worse?

  • Spend 5 minutes vacuuming a room yourself?
  • Spend 15 minutes removing and cleaning out the nasty ass brushes in the Roomba???

Maybe if I wasn't such a stickler for keeping an immaculate household this wouldn't bother me. I mean really, I am an exceptional house keeper. 

I'm realizing that lately my journal has a few recurring themes: fights with the Roomba, my digestive system, Wrigley's digestive system, spiders in my closet and the fact that I'm going bald. Is this all that's worth documenting in my life?


Anyway, I'm excited to see Run Fat Boy Run this weekend. Looks clever and entertaining.


I crunched another one of these guys on our morning walk! I feel TERRIBLE. And the really sad thing is that this little guy was just a few feet away so SO HELP ME GOD if I just slaughtered his mother in plain snail sight - I deserve to be squashed like a grape too. I am now a serial snail killer.

While on our walk Wrigs starts his usual poo walk (sniffs the ground with a hunched back, tail between legs) and then plops himself down on this hill that overlooks the lake. (It's a popular poo spot among the canines). His last few poops have been sort of Milk Dud-like, not very long and firm so today he unloads a giant sized log that looks very healthy and solid. As I bend down to pick it up I say, "Beautiful Poo Wrigley. That's a beautiful poo!" (ok quite honestly, I say this all the time) and as I stand up there's a nice looking older gentleman coming down the hill who smiles and says, "Good Morning." I smile back and say the same but I'm 100% certain he heard me talking about this beautiful mound of shit I'm now carrying in my hand. As Wrigs and I walk away I say (to Wrigs) "You're such a beautiful boo-oy" (purposely trying to make boy sound somewhat similar to poo which really isn't possible) so I ended up sounding like a verbally challenged adult.

Oh well, that's what I get for killing snails.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

hair update

Thanks to Karyn's expert hair advice, my hair is no longer the color of the sun. It's now a softer, less bright blonde.

I finally made it over to Sally Beauty supply late this afternoon and bought the creme toner and developer she recommended. The woman helping me locate the products said "Wow, you're gold!" No shit lady, why do you think I'm here?!? She also tugged at the wisps on the side of my head and said I had a "delicate hairline." Is that female speak for "You're going bald???"

If you're interested, check out more info on female pattern baldness here. Who knew such a chart existed for the ladies?

Totally unrelated, I don't watch a heck of a lot of TV but when I do this commercial seems to be on all the time and it's annoying.

Wow, quite the exciting post I know. At least I'm finally out of the bathroom.


I still haven't been able to leave the comforts of home. It's amazing just how much "stuff" your intestines are capable of storing in any given day. I've been drinking a ton of Gatorade trying to re-infuse some of the electrolytes that I've lost but I just feel wiped out.

So I decided to clean the kitchen...

I couldn't muster up the mental energy it takes to fight with the Roomba so I headed upstairs to continue working on my closet reorg (which came to a screeching halt Monday night due to one of these,who is still at large).

And this is what I found, a sweet, sleeping Chum. It's the only time I'm able to use "sweet" and "Chumley" in the same sentence - when Chum is sleeping.

I didn't want to disturb his nap so I left the closet as is which is not a pretty sight.

I have more to add but I've got something else to do right now. This is ridiculous.

Not Just McDonalds...

So I left the house this morning with a bunch of errands to run:

-the dry cleaners

-the bank

-the post office

-the car wash

-the beauty supply store


and then finally...

-grocery shopping (YUCK)

After picking up and dropping off dry cleaning I realized I needed some caffeine so I stopped at the local Bagels and Brew and got an Iced Mocha.

Can you guess where I am now?????

This really sucks. I don't think I'll be able to leave the house for a while and I only knocked one thing off my list.

Hopefully I won't turn into this lady. (I realize this story is over a month old but I am completely fascinated by it)

Thank God for word search puzzles. Does anyone else have to be doing or reading something (even if it's a shampoo bottle) while sitting???

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Happy Birthday Mom!

(and so sorry your birthday happens to fall on crappy ass TAX day!)


Monday, April 14, 2008

Party like it's 1998

Karyn posted a pic of us (check it out here) taken at the Jenny Jones holiday party. (That's where we worked, it wasn't Jenny's private party)

Surprisingly, not much has changed for either of us. But the funny hair color is now that same brassy yellow in the pic due to my do-it-yourself color job.

Karyn's IMing me a fix for this now which she's confident will work. I'll give it shot. What have I got to lose??? Other than bright yellow hair!!!

The only thing remotely entertaining about watching golf-

-after the golfer hits the ball and some crazy fan yells, "GET IN THE HOLE!"

I LOVE that.

We went to the Senior Open in Newport Beach a few weeks ago and that's what I yelled (rather emphatically, I might add) after every hit or putt. Other spectators thought I was a HUGE fan...of everyone.

*And just when I thought Golf was over for a while, Tom informs me that the Big Break Ka'anapali premieres tomorrow night.

Deep in the throes of a closet re-org

I have less than 12 hours to relinquish all castaways lurking inside my closet and I'm at loggerheads.

There are two things I despise when undertaking a monumental closet purge such as this:

1) I never seem to have enough hangers (even when I'm giving clothes away)


2) Inevitably, a spider will dash across the floor halting all closet related progress.

That's where I'm at right now and until Tom can locate and extract the exact spider from the crime scene, there's a full on closet embargo.

I took some before pics earlier today to showcase this barrel of fun...

Head on view: Stuff is shoved and smushed into these wire shelving units. I want to be able to locate anything I'm looking for by sight, rather than my current method of tossing 10 items onto the floor to find a coin purse.

Looking further down: I want to keep the floors clean of excess stuff too. I'm always tripping over shoes, clothes from the laundry basket, purses, or stuff I tossed down from the shelves while searching for that one item. Oh, Hi Wrigley!

To the left: This little shelving unit serves no purpose other than to provide Chumley with direct access to all my hand made shawls. He's been destroying them over the last two years by pulling and chewing on the yarn. (And of course both animals had to be present for this year's closet purge. God forbid they miss out on all the excitement!)

To the right: I can't get the photo to flip, but this area here is just a hodge podge of nonsense. I want to get everything out of these bags and into a permanent place, preferably out of my house. What's in these bags? God only knows. That's part of the reason for this purge.

Alrighty. Time to scream louder for the Exterminator!

Plastic bag surcharge

YES! YES!! YES!!! It's about time.

Even though I've used these bags for poop pick up, I feel .25 cents is a small price to pay for cleaning up the environment and protecting our wildlife.

California spends $25million a YEAR on plastic bag clean up. What I want to know is, how the heck did they figure that out???

Either way, I'll support this charge.

Junk Drawers

I'm in the process of spring cleaning and decided to tackle the trivial crap first - Junk Drawers. Both Tom and I each have our own drawers, and I think they're an unavoidable "must have" in every household. We'll continue to keep junk in our drawers but it's good to clean them out every once in a while. I'm ransacking the entire house (again!) because tomorrow at 7:30am we have a HOPE truck coming to pick up all our giveaways. I've known about this for over 2 weeks and it was my intention to spend the weekend weeding out, however I got sidetracked so now I'm scrambling to get this done in a few short hours.

And I'm distracted by the contents of our junk drawers.

Here's what's in Tom's drawer:

-golf balls
-golf tees
-golf pencils
-golf scorecards
-Costco receipts
-a coupon for free tow service (great place to keep this don't ya think?)
-needle nose pliers
-coins and euros
-deck of cards
-extension cords
-3 sets of airline earphones
-my Dad's bouncy ball (SO glad I found this)
-a few PSP game discs

Guys are boring.

Here's what's housed inside MY (much more interesting) junk drawer:

-perfume samples
-emory boards
-an eye patch
-flea collar (for the dog)
-stretch Dudley (however mine is a rabbit, not a smiley)
-swim goggles
-a pipe and some herbs
-a doily
-large egg of silly putty
-a rosary
-gummy teeth
-cough drops
-a mini bop it
-word search puzzles
-sea shells

So what's in your junk drawers???

Think you live in a bug free home?

Just watch a daddy long leg take up residence in a corner of your home for a weekend and see what kind of beastlies he'll attract. I'm not sure if I'm more freaked out about the spider or the creatures flailing around in it's web!

My breakfast this morning-

-was the size of my head.
I had a delicious California grown Pomelo, which tastes just like a grapefruit but costs about 4 x's as much. And come to think of it, the edible part is not much bigger than a grapefruit because it has such a thick outer skin.

That's the last time I let the friendly grocer talk me into buying fruit.

What a rip off.

Laundry 101

For the past two weeks I have been using what I thought was laundry detergent but was in fact just a fabric softener for our wash loads. Could this be the reason why our Dryer stopped working???

Why the heck do they make the fabric softener in 67 ounce sizes now? Isn't that regulation detergent size?!? How else are we supposed to know that it's fabric softener (aside from the fact that "fabric softener" is printed on the bottle) BUT it's in really small print. I'm sure I'm not the first to do this.

At least this explains that weird rash...though our clothes have never smelled better. No wonder Tom has a trail of bees following him around on the golf course. He smells like a walking lilac bush!!! Holy Cow! I wonder if this is why his allergies have been so bad lately too! Oh I feel really bad now. You know, you can put the wife into the house but that does not make her a house wife. 

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Brandi needs to go

I just finished watching The Big Give and I'm disappointed that there was no elimination this week. I felt it was Bradi's time to hit the road (back to SIERRA VISTA!) God that was annoying. I just think she's phony. Did anyone notice how she kept saying to every little boy as well as BIG BOY John Travolta, "Oh you're so handsome!" And I swear to God, if I heard her say, "Miss Sierra Vista" one more time I was going to throw my chicken leg at the tv. (we had KFC tonight). Not only that, I thought her entire Give was just lame. Was it the little girl's wish to be crowned "Miss Sierra Vista" for a day? Or did Brandi just decide to do it herself so she could relive her days as "Miss Sierra Vista?" And what the hell kind of crack was she smokin' to call a 20 foot drive-by in a convertible a parade??? Sorry to sound so negative about what she did for these people but if you compare the other two givers accomplishments to her meager efforts, she should've been sent home to...


I hope she goes next week.


I'd say it was a pretty productive weekend.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

What's been on our TV the entire day:

(and why I've been blogging most of the night)
and now...

Where's my GIN???

We're all nuts

When we entertain (which has been a lot lately) I like to use a mish mosh of special serving bowls and dishes. I don't even care if they match just as long as they are cute. We always have a bowl of nuts (cashews, almonds, honey roasted peanuts, what have you) and I've yet to find something cute for the nuts so I always put the nuts in a dull glass bowl. I want to spruce up our "nut service" so today while Tom and I were browsing the aisles of Tuesday Morning (he gets corralled about 4 times a year for this type of shopping) I came across a tiny bowl that I fell in love with. It's by Portmeirion (all their stuff is AMAZING) and it retails for about $28. But! Here at Tuesday Morning it was a measly $13, which, perhaps is a high price to pay for housing nuts- but I looooooved it. I said to Tom that I'd like to get it and asked what he thought.

His response?

"I think you're nuts for spending 13 bucks on a bowl for nuts!

But isn't it cute???

                                                      MY NUT BOWL

However once it's filled with nuts you won't be able to see the little creatures inside the bowl.

Maybe Tom was right.

Our house.

If you could see our house right now you would think an earthquake/tornado/tidal wave struck our town. We inherited a console table from my sister and her husband and are trying to find the perfect place to put it. I originally thought it would go in the family room so we moved around the furniture, unplugged lamps, displaced plants and positioned the table in various places around the room. Nothing worked. We left the family room and headed into the living room. Same thing, rolled up the rug, moved the couch away from the wall (which by the way was THRILLING for the animals - both Chum and Wrigs ran back and forth behind the couch like wild apes because it was something new and exciting for them) moved around the existing end tables, unplugged lamps, etc. and still not loving it. Tom's threshold for making furniture placement related decisions is about 3.4 seconds so after all this he heads back into the family room and plops down on the oversized chair (that is now sitting in the middle of the room) to watch the Cubs game.

I say "stuff it" and leave the living room in shambles and head into the kitchen for a cold beverage. Today was the first real hot day of the year (in the high 80's) and in my book there's only one drink that completely cools and refreshes the body on those hot summer like days (aside from lemonade and iced tea). It's an iced cold Gin and Tonic with a splash of Rose's Lime Juice and several full squirts of fresh limes.

Hello old friend. I've missed you.

A compromise

I ate breakfast outside this morning and got completely sunburned and don't want to broadcast a pic of my freckly face. So here's a pic of the back of my head...
The color is a bit brassy but over the next couple weeks it should tone down. I went to see a "professional" (using that term lightly here) and was made to feel a fool since I attempted to color my hair on my own. I could have had it re-done (for $125) but the risk would have been more breakage (aka "pube head") and even more dryness. So instead I opted for a deep conditioning treatment and will continue to use a deep conditioner at home twice a week. The color still seems really bright and the stylist suggested I use an ash blonde shampoo (something they sold in the salon for $40) which would help tone down the brassiness but I'm pretty confident I can find a drug store brand that will do the same thing for a lot less. I'm thinking this might be worth a shot.

As for the pubes that lined my face, they are no longer there because I plucked them. I realize that is the sin of all sins when it comes to hair care but what the hell, they were gray anyway so what's the big deal if they grow back gray again!?!? Or does that myth "for every gray hair you pluck, 10 more will grow back in its place" apply here? Oh well. Bring it on - I've got lots of tweezers.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Hair update

"It's just hair right? It'll grow back, right???"

What cheap ass trying to save few bucks said that???

So the look I was going for was sort of a soft buttery blond but what I got was more along the lines of oh, I don't know...shockingly bright MARIGOLD?!?!?

I don't know what happened. It's just REALLY REALLY bright - it looks like it's reflecting the suns rays when I'm standing in a windowless bathroom in the dark. So, I'm meeting with a stylist for a "consultation" later today.

And a few of those sprouts that I was worried about popped up too. But they aren't stick straight, they're more like short curly pubes randomly poking out the top of my head. And for whatever reason they didn't take the color so I have what looks to be gray pubes framing my face. Yeahhhhhh, that's hot.

All over the place today

I'm organizing old photos from files, e-mails and cell phone downloads and found two pictures that I haven't seen in quite a while.

This one was taken several years ago after my Dad's second stem cell transplant. He was neutropenic and we could not be around him for more than a few minutes at a time and we had to be covered in sterile gowns from head to toe. (and my hair is not ear length, it was tied back in a bun).

This next picture was taken just a couple weeks before he died. He had to take so many pills several times a day so instead of just throwing them into the pill cup and swallowing them down, he would make little faces and objects out of his colorful pills.

I was sitting next to him as he arranged these pills above and I asked him, "Is that a clown face?" And he looked at me and said, "No it's a lady. Can't you tell?" (of course, I should have known, my Dad LOVED the ladies). And then he pointed to each side of the lady's face and said, "See? These are her earrings."

I'll never forget that. I'm so glad I took the photo even though I felt weird at the time. Snapping photos of the pills on his tray, knowing that my Dad knew why I was capturing these moments on film and trying to smile through the pain wasn't easy. This was the last photo I took while he was alive.

Life with Roomba


Time to Change

My hair, or to be more specific, my roots, are REALLY bad. I've been wearing head wraps for the past few days to cover up the stripe-age. It's like a ring of steel wool gray atop rusty dishwater blond. It's embarrassing that I've let it go for this long and the thing is, I really don't like my overall hair color anymore. So I'm going to try something new, and I'm going to do it all myself. (I'll never forget this encounter from almost a decade ago when I was working 60 hour weeks in Chicago and had neglected a few hair appointments. I was in a meeting with a very opinionated gentleman who looked at me straight faced and said, "You have such beautiful blond hair, why must you darken your roots?" It made me laugh out loud and it's something I'll never forget).

I've colored my hair before but I typically try to match the existing color and just touch up the new growth. But this time I'm trying something different. I'm going to try for a light buttery blond instead of this caramel corn/dried apricot color I've got going on now. I've got the box of color sitting atop my bathroom counter so I'm all set - and if I don't like it or if my hair singes off to 1/2 inch sprouts it'll grow back, right? I just feel the need to try something new. After all it's springtime, and it's time for a change. We'll see how this goes.

Nordstrom Online Rocks!

Nordstrom's online is running this incredible deal, if you spend $100 in Beauty or Fragrance you get this pink tote filled with all sorts of sample sized goodies. I got my mom's birthday gift online (which is the same thing every year, some form of Shalimar - be it perfume, body lotion or powder) and qualified for the tote!

Here's what you get:

Bare Escentuals® RareMinerals™ Facial Cleanser (0.05 oz.)
Bliss The Youth as We Know It Moisturizer (0.1 oz.)
Clarins Advanced Extra-Firming Eye Contour Serum (0.1 oz.)
DKNY Delicious Night Eau de Parfum Spray (0.05 oz.)
Donna Karan Cashmere Mist Body Lotion (0.2 oz.)
Erno Laszlo TranspHuse Topical sample
GoSMILE AM/PM Whitening Protection Toothpastes samples
Juicy Couture Royal Body Crème (0.25 oz.)
Kinerase® Cream with SPF 30 (0.1 oz.)
Lancôme Rénergie Double Performance Anti-Wrinkle and Firming Treatment (0.5 oz.)
Lancôme Rénergie Night—Night Treatment (0.5 oz.)
L'Occitane Shea Hand Cream (0.3 oz.)
Missoni Acqua Eau de Toilette Spray (0.07 oz.)
Narciso Rodriguez For Him eau de toilette spray (0.04 oz.)
Origins Modern Friction™ Nature's Gentle Dermabrasion (0.17 oz.)
philosophy hope in a jar eye & lip cream (0.25 oz.)
Prescriptives Lash Envy Volumizing Mascara (0.08 oz.)
Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer Light (0.5 oz.)

The thing is, they will only send the tote to the same address where the product you are purchasing is being shipped. And since I was purchasing for my mom in Illinois, the tote of goodies was headed there as well. However, I was having issues with the online system, first with my credit card (it expired and I had to call the hotline to activate the new card but during the time I made the call and then went back to ordering online, the online system was not recognizing the new card and kept freezing up). So I had to contact Nordstrom online via telephone and because of the hassle the wonderful woman on the phone said she would ship the tote and goodies to another address. I offered to pay the shipping charge and she insisted that it be waived. How incredible is that? So I got my goodies in the mail yesterday and I LOVE them. It's so fun to test all the tubes and smell the pots of creams. Good Golly I love products! And I love being a girl. If I was born a guy I'd be soooooo gay.