Friday, November 30, 2012

Frustrating Friday

Well it's not that bad as the title implies.  But hey!  That's how the world spins these days.  Make things seem worse than they appear and then the masses come running.  Or not.

I'm actually having trouble with getting pictures synced on the computer.  I'm up to my nostrils with open windows and folders and import information and whatnot.  Ugh.

Lets see.  Have you all gotten the flu shot?  Why or why not?  I recently had son #1 to two different medical appointments and both times we were offered up the flu shot.  Son #1 looked at me panicky, but I planned to refuse it anyway.  Honestly, we've (where's some wood to knock on!), been free of illness for several years now.  I credit it all to super good immunity systems good hand-washing and hygiene.

So I'm a part of the memory fiasco with Blogger and Google.  Some observant peeps gave me some awesome suggestions.  I just bit the bullet like some others and paid the large corporation their $2.49/month for extra storage.  But the Chairman had a wonderful suggestion!  He thought I should either take donations from the masses if this blander was worth it to you or set up a Paypal account.  (tee-hee).  Those frugal Italians.  Gotta love 'em.  But I couldn't not offer up pictures of cuteness like this!  I was downstairs working and came up to find these two rascals.  Cuteness overload.
But since I don't want to be deemed the "crazy cat lady" I'll refuse to tell you more.  Except for the irritating fact that he lost a brand new reflective collar somewhere between here and out there.  I went out with my headlamp on to see if it would reflect in a ditch or field or anywhere.  All I received was some cautious stares from passing cars in the dark and no collar.

Daughter #1 called in a dither from school this morning.  "MOM!  I need chocolate today!".  Really?  So do I!  No really Mom.  I need it for a class.  We are doing something with chocolate.  So I had to get out of my fuzzy blue robe and head off to the store to find my teenage daughter some chocolate to pass out.  I think it's a ruse, but don't tell her I said that.

Daughter #2 has issues with hair combing.  Quite frankly, I'd rather she comb her own because in her world, it has to be perfect.  She recognizes the fact I think because yesterday as we were walking into the bathroom to comb yet another perfect pony tail she said, 'I bet this is the scariest part of your day isn't it?'.  Well actually, it almost is.

Son #1 is now gainfully employed.  That is until tomorrow when the basketball tournament is over.  He's working with another kid in his class on the scoreboard for the 5th grade girls basketball tournament at our school.  Tonight he's sitting in his chair for four games in a row (that equates to four hours).  It all is for the $5/game payment he gets.  But!  If I told him I'd pay him $5/hour to sit in a chair, I wonder if he would?  I doubt it... but it's tempting.

Well that's all I've got today.  I leave you with one more dose of cuteness.  Go ahead, call me that Crazy Cat Lady...

Monday, November 26, 2012

Monday Musings

Happy Monday!  I love my family.  But I do like the deafening quiet of everyone back in their places with the only sounds coming from the running washer and dishwasher and the snoring pooch.

How was your Thanksgiving?  Did you eat yourself to a stupor?  Did you love and laugh like never before?  Did any fights break out?  Hope not on that last one...

Ours was nice.  It was kind of like the Festa Italiana of Thanksgiving.  Yes, the food was good and the visiting lovely and the decibel levels reasonably high.  Yes, "his people are now my people".  And I like that I feel that way.

Did you want to come to a party I'm having?  Put on some drab clothes and color your face ashen.  Turn on some very sad harmonica music.  Try not to smile.  Because you have officially been invited to a pity party.  A lot of people I love were in a very warm climate.  They were frolicking on the beach.  They were eating delightful food.  They were having the richest of conversations.  I can hardly fathom how much fun they had because I wasn't there!  Didn't they need me to keep the conversations lively?  Didn't they need my comments on cooking?  Didn't my mostly-nice older brother miss the opportunity of putting me down?  I think so.  I'm actually glad the delightful time there is nearly over.  I can pull off my drab-gray clothes and turn down the sad music and go on with my life again.  Whew.

I was at the hardware store the other day.  So was "Bella" and her family.  "Bella" was about two.  I know it was "Bella" because I heard her name not once, or twice, or thrice.  It was continually being yelled out.  "Bella!  Out of the way!  Bella!  Come here!  Bella!  No!  Isabella Rose (must have been something more serious), don't touch!  Then as I was heading back to the van with my new flag pole, I heard them yelling, "BELLA!  CAR!".  Really?  Couldn't you just hold her hand or carry her so that she doesn't get mushed under a car tire?  Poor Bella Rose...

I often am stunned.  The daughter that is as close to my heart as the other one doesn't share one gene with me.  But I find it fascinating how much we are alike.  Her voice.  Her intonations.  Her mannerisms at times.  And lately, the knots on her neck mimic mine exactly.  Weird.  It isn't all genetics that binds people together.

I'd post a picture or two, but I get some ornery message saying I've reached my 1 GB quota for something.  So maybe that means they've had enough of me and my musings.  I hope not.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Thankful Thursday

Today in the quiet of the morning I was very aware of this being a thankful kind of day.  I'm full of gratitude for a multitude of things from knowing inner peace, having a dear husband and MYP, being brought up by wonderful parents and siblings, as well as having extended family, friends, and good health.

But what I want to say today is that I'm thankful for those of you that are loving and giving and serving outside of our border.  I'm thankful you are willing.  I'm thankful you love others more than yourself.  I'm thankful for just the thought of you faithfully filling your place.  And even though you are not able to eat the turkey and trimmings with your loved ones, you are so very loved from afar.

Thankfulness and food are a lovely combination.  Today will be spent at a home with the Chairman's extended family.  They are mostly all Italians.  That means there will be a lot of food, a lot of stories, and a high decibel level...  

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Makeshift Monday

In light of the upcoming Thanksgiving Day, I leave you with this.  Nothing to muse other than I'm thankful for a lot of things.  And that even includes all of you fellow bloggers.  Hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving. We are richly blessed for so many reasons.
Sorry this one is a bit racy...

Friday, November 16, 2012

Fleecey Friday

I don't think 'fleecey' is a word.  But I needed an "F" adjective for Friday because... well... it seems like it should be that way.  I chose fleece because of my latest discovery.  Do you like to crawl into bed and feel like you have landed into a pillow of baby softness and warmth?  If so, run, don't walk to your nearest Costco.  Pick up a set of their fleece sheets.  I start thinking about them about 7:00 pm wishing the MYP would go to bed so I could run to my room and crawl into the cozy cocoon of softness.

Who do nice, ordinary people feel that they can pick their teeth or worse yet, their nose, in their cars at stoplights with people all around?  I was next to an attractive 20-something year old lady this week and... well, never mind.

I read about myself on a couple of blogs this week.  At least I think the reference was towards me.  One posted about her cute kids and inserted one small picture of her cat.  Then she added, 'I will not be a crazy cat lady that blogs about her cat...' and so forth.  That would be me!  The crazy cat lady.  Ugh.  I would like to tell you about our latest walks with not just a dog, but also a cat that were hilarious.  I would like to tell you about his latest hunting trophy.  But I can't, or I would be likened to a crazy cat lady.  Another stated that she feels like every blog entry should have a picture or two.  So that being said, I will share a couple pictures!
Lucky for cat that there is a car cover now...  

Very annoyed.  He wants to be on her bed.
I won't tell you that this is son receiving his 4.0 certificate for 1st quarter because that would sound like bragging.
Another ordinary moment... folding clothes on the bed with MYP chattering along beside


Coming home from groomer.  Skunk smell be gone!  

Coach talking after another victory.  

Leaving later today to cheer our high school team in the championship game!

Monday, November 12, 2012

Monday Musings

Would you believe me if I told you that as I was trying to doze off to sleep last night I was trying to come up with some musings?  For some reason, my mind is completely void of thought and I don't feel like there's much to muse.  Well lets see where my mind takes me.

I've been eating too much leftover Halloween candy.  I'm doing it only because son #1 loves me and gave me a big pile of peanut butter cups.  So I'm doing it because of his kind gesture and not because I like them or anything.  urp.  

Speaking of sons.... one of the best things I read about parenting sons (not that I read many parenting books because the 'experts' never parented the kids we are raising, so how would they really know?  I digress.) was that they don't like to cozy up on a couch or on their bed and talk.  They like to be shooting hoops.  Riding a bike.  Or even in a car.  So since last night was dark, a bit windy, and the heavens were offering up a steady rain, it seemed like the perfect time to go on a walk with the aforementioned son.  For some reason, he jumped at the opportunity.  We headed out in some good rain gear and had a good 45 minute visit about life and worms and grades and haircuts and worms and annoying sisters and football and worms... and it was just great.  

A few weeks ago I mentioned going to see an elderly man and how you receive so much more than you give when you visit someone that is ill or in a hospital or whatnot.  Well, this man went on to his reward more quickly than we could imagine.  His funeral was Saturday.  It was a wonderful encouragement to all be together and pay our respects.  I had the privilege of having a part in the singing.  There was a full military honor at the cemetery for his service in WWII.  He truly loved our MYP and he told me as much.  One of them wrote a letter to him a month ago since she couldn't be with me on the visit.  He read it over and over and over and over and it was a well-worn piece of paper.  I took a screen shot of it before I took it to him.  I'm thankful I did so she can read it some day when she's grown...  out of the mouth of babes...  they can do more than we can sometimes...

And finally.  Did you know how wet dogs smell?  You do?  Simply awful, right?  Do you know what a wet golden retriever smells like that was sprayed with skunk only six days prior?  Much worse.  Trust me.

And finally.  A couple 'funnies' I saw yesterday while 'surfing'....
No, one cat is enough thank you.  
Yes, there is not one ounce of protection with our pooch.  A delivery guy just told us
she would open the door and let him in if she could.
Mused out...

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Wednesday Words

If you are only my friend on the blog and not FB, you probably don't know how our anniversary day turned out.  If you would have told me eighteen years ago in Stillwater, MN that my new husband would be saying 'you stink' to me on our 18th anniversary, I would have hardly believed you.  If you would have told me that our dog was kinda dumb, I would have believed you.  Before the whole fiasco, this is what daughter #1 captured unbeknownst to us:
I turned the table and took a picture of her then:  
I digress.  
About an hour after our anniversary supper that consisted of a mish-mash of leftovers and lively conversation, son #1 and I headed out for a little walk in the dark.  Puppy dog and kitty cat love these dark and spooky adventures.  We were just about home when Lisi excitedly sniffed something in the culvert at the back of our lot.  Soon she starts her "I"VE GOT SOMETHING HERE" tail-wagging/following a trail gait.  I told son #1, "I bet she has sniffed out the possum again!".  I was so wrong.  
Soon we hear barking right by the driveway at the front of our house.  We run up.  Son #1 turns on his headlamp to see what she's scared up.  And scared indeed.  
A skunk!  A big skunk with tail raised and then... the explosive bomb of stink hits the air.  Lisi backed up barking but then starts heading back at the skunk.  I am yelling, "NO LISI!  LEAVE IT!  NO!" and all her high-brow training was doing not one iota of good.  She was determined to bring that skunk into submission. Without thinking clearly, I start to run up to the dog/skunk to pull Lisi away.  I'm thinking the skunk has sprayed his juice and there wouldn't be more.  Lucky for me I have a smart son.  He yells, "MOM!  NO!"  And then I realize Pepe LePew's tail is turned towards me.  I back slowly away and grab the collar of Lisi.  The skunk scampers off across the field into the darkness.  And we are left alone with a VERY, VERY pungent dog.  Her face is wet with spray.  I have it all over my hands/arms.  

I go into the house and yell for the Chairman.  He looks at me and says loudly, 'YOU STINK'.   Followed by 'get out of your clothes!'  Then he grabs the keys and heads for the store to get more ingredients for the skunk removal potion.  Two and a half-baths later, Lisi still smells musky.  Not in a wonderful way either.  So she has spent a lot of time doing this

But don't worry, she's also doing some of this:  (don't mind my purple stripe pajamas!)  She's lucky I let her be close because she still stinks.
Anyone else know of a 7-month old cat that still 'nurses'?  Simba always kneads and sucks a soft blanket before settling down for a nap.  I find it almost awkward to watch... He must have some self-confidence issues.  Or miss his mama in a big way.

Got a blog hit from Gambia!  I had to look up to see that it was in western Africa.  Don't worry.  I'm not becoming that famous.  It was an innocent soul looking for "gave note on a Chairman of the Company".  I wonder what the note said?  

Am I going to mention anything at all about the election that just happened?  Nope!  Well maybe just one thing.  I am thankful that I can now answer our phone knowing it will most likely be a real person and not a recording...

Monday, November 5, 2012

Eighteen short years...

I want to take a break from regular programming (such as Monday Musings) to offer up a tribute to this guy:
This is my home screen on my phone.  It was a moment captured by one of the MYP this summer after supper on the deck.  Today marks eighteen years of being side by side.  I have lived with the Chairman for as long as I did with my parents....

Eighteen years.  It seems like it has been a blink of an eye.  But more so, it feels like a lifetime.  In a good way.  We never fathomed on November 5, 1994 what we would be facing in the future.  We have experienced the richest, saddest, most joyous, and sometimes most challenging moments.  And we did it together.

Marriage isn't a piece of paper.  It isn't a date on the calendar.  It is a living thing.  Yes, it all isn't candles and roses and sweet smelling things.  It is also the crumbs and cat hair of life.  It is realizing that the other person isn't exactly like you.  They don't think exactly the same way.   You have to not only accept differences, but embrace them.

The Chairman has changed me in so many ways.  He's taught me how to be more sensitive.  He's taught me how to reach out to others more.  He softened my rough edges.  And he's challenged my brain to the point of it exploding (that's the problem with marrying a guy that's almost too smart for you).

The longer we have been married, the more apparent how incredibly serious the decision is on choosing a mate.  They influence every fiber of your life.  They are the parent of your children.  They are your source of Spiritual help when you can't do it for yourself.  I was beyond fortunate.  Though I did not know it at the time, I found my soul-mate with His help.

After eighteen years, you learn things that irritate - like wet shower mats from jumping out too soon.  Crumbs in the butter.  Open doors.  Too high of thermostats.  And especially things falling out of the freezer and onto your toe.  But you learn what pleases them and that's really a wonderful aspect of a long commitment.

Would I do it again?  In the flutter of my next heartbeat.  I'm living my life-long dream.  I have a husband that puts his family first.  I have MYP keeping our home lively.  I have a great big sweet dog and a cute kitty.  I have a warm home and extended family and dear friends.  I'm so thankful he chose to join up on the Utah raft trip of 1992.  I'm thankful I passed his rigorous and thorough research phase (if you know the Chairman, you know what I'm talking about).  And I'm thankful we have the future before us.  Because it will be perfect no matter the experiences we have yet to face.  Because the Chairman is by my side.  And I know we will be safe.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

City Slicker

Have you heard that story about the country mouse and the city mouse?  You have?  Good!  I think I'd like to compare myself to that story because last time I wrote about a skunk in the country.  This time is about a city I never knew existed.  But I don't want to compare myself to a mouse.  Because that blasted cat that now lives here keeps killing and (gack!) sometimes eating mice.

Hello from your good friend Lisi!  Now please don't get too excited because I'm writing again so soon.  It might be another year or so before something interesting happens around here.  But today was different!  Really different.

The Big Guy that lives here ate his breakfast with his family around the table.  Then he got his big boots on!  And a jacket!  And he picked up the leash (he never uses it... I think it's a prop) and headed for the truck.  Oh BOY!  A big hike with my Big Guy.  So I hopped in and off we went!  We drove through some different areas.  I love that truck we have because the back window goes way down and I can lean waaaay out and sniff to my big-soft-hearted golden's content.  We stopped and it was a different kind of place.  Some grass, but lots of cars racing here and there.  We hiked around some tall poles a bit and then eventually got back in the truck and ended up in this super-big garage that was dark and had a lot of different levels.  The Big Guy gets out and actually puts me on a leash and we head outside of this garage place.

Then we walk down this sidewalk.  I'm looking this way.  That way.  There is NO grass anywhere in sight!  Where to you go to the bathroom?  Then the Big Guy opens this big glass door and we walk in.  Fancy!  Then we go to this big door with buttons.  The Big Guy pushes it.  The door opens.  We go in and it jostles us around and then the door opens again.  MAGIC!  Did you know my Big Guy can push buttons and we are amazingly in a completely different spot?  He's pretty neat and all, but that really wowed me!

We walk into this quiet place.  There is deep carpet.  Lots of rooms.  And one of them smelled a lot like my Big Guy!  I sniffed all over but felt most comfortable lying right by this big desk.  He looked like he was busy enough, so I took a good nap.  Even snored mind you!  But there were honks and busses roaring by on the street below and so my nap was interrupted.  After about five minutes or hours (we dogs are challenged with time), he says, 'lets go Big Girl'.  Seriously?  I'm not overweight!

This time he opened a door and there were lots and lots and lots of stairs.  So I raced him down and beat him to the bottom.  We headed back to the big garage.  I still couldn't see grass.  I'm not sure what people do in places like that where there are only tall buildings and cement and glass and no place to go potty!  Lucky for me and the Big Guy, the ride home wasn't too long.  I could tell he was talking on the phone to the the Big Lady that yells but loves me anyway that we had been on a field trip downtown.  He even said that we were just a couple blocks from the President!  I could be famous!  No wait!  I am famous.  I write stories.  That's enough for me.

My family is going outside now for a game of hide and seek in the dark.  I LOVE that game.  Except they yell at me when I help one team more than the other by sniffing them out and standing there wagging my tail.  So I'll try to be fair this time.

Hope you enjoyed my little venture to the big city!  I think I behaved so well that maybe if I'm really lucky, the Big Guy will take me to work with him more often!  I hope so.  Especially if I don't have to go potty....

Friday, November 2, 2012

Frivolous Friday

Why frivolous the curious peeps ask?  Because almost every thought I'm going to share has nothing substantial or serious about it.

Hmmm where to start?  Well at the moment, I'm waiting for a plumber to show up.  No, our toilets are not overflowing.  It is for a good reason.  A new faucet that I'm delighted to report will be a part of our kitchen!  Since most of the work will not entail leaning over, I think I'm good.  However if the theory holds true about plumbers, I'll try to avert my eyes.

Yesterday I had the privilege of being with a lot of the Chairman's family at lunchtime.  In fact, the Chairman wasn't even able to go.  I was sitting there enjoying myself to the fullest and realized that really once you have been married for a lot of years, his family/my family becomes very blurred.  His family is my family.  My family is his family.  That's a neat concept.

When the MYP have questions about homework, I defer to the Chairman if it involves math.  However, the other night there was a need for assistance in a writing assignment.  I took over assisted as best I could and found out 'my' grade was a 5.6 out of 6!  Not bad for a rookie.  (I almost never help with homework since I think they should figure it out for themselves.  Honest!)

Lisi's dog training paid off again yesterday.  In fact, it quite possibly saved her life or kept her from injury.  I was walking her while waiting for a child in piano lessons.  We became separated - she was on a grassy field and I across a parking lot.  Suddenly she discovered that she wasn't with me and started racing towards me.  I saw a van coming in very fast.  I threw up my arm in the 'wait' position for her in case she didn't hear me yell 'wait'.  She promptly sat down right at the curb and the van whizzed by.  I then yelled 'come' and she did with gusto.  Sweet, smart puppykins we have.

Can't have a post without mention of the cat.  Another call.  This time from another neighbor.  "Hello?  We have your cat here.  He's in the yard by us and seems like he is so friendly he must be an inside cat.  Did he get away from you?"  Um no.  He's looking for another rodent to kill and dismember, but likes to stop and say hello to people if they are nearby.  So thanks!  You'll probably see him wander by again.

Today the football team for son #1 is all meeting at a nearby hotel to swim and eat snacks/supper.  Picture 30 - 12/13 year old boys in a swimming pool.  Now picture Mr. and Mrs. Out of Town there for business and after seeing the glossy brochure of the calm pool head down for a dip in the hot tub to relax.  Tee-hee.

We have a neighbor that I am certain thinks I'm unique at best.  Well last night I headed out with the MYP and we had a fantastically fun game of hide and seek in the dark.  I was teamed up with one of the MYP.  We decided to lie down flat in an adjoining field.  Soon we were found and shrieks of delight were coming out of my mouth and then I realized that less than 100 yards away was Mrs. Neighbor Lady squinting through the darkness wondering if something very scary was happening.  I should grow up.  But nighttime hide and seek is still very fun.  She doesn't know what she's missing.

See?  I promised frivolity.  So there you go!