Tuesday, May 31, 2011

After Thoughts Review and Give Away!

I have been given the opportunity to give a product review for some awesome products made by my Amazing Daughter. How convenient that this allows me to cross off goal #11 for Project 52!

Amazing Daughter aka Jennee makes some adorable aprons -- always sassy, still classy! I have been the recepient of a few of her aprons. They are so much fun to wear. Not only do they have the ability to give off a sassy, classy vibe, but, wearing these aprons actually makes cooking just a little more fun. Don't cook? Don't let that minor detail keep you from owning a sassy apron. It may be just the inspiration you need to find your inner chef!

That's just one way to pamper yourself. Here are a few more ways to give yourself some pampering.

Did you know that the best way to get a good night's sleep is to sleep in total darkness? In this technological age, there's a good chance your bedroom might have a bunch of little bright lights scattered about, from the alarm clock, to cell phones, to the TV. The best way to block out those annoying lights is with a sleep mask. Jennee has some very cute and comfortable sleep masks. She has designed her sleep masks with a wide satin ribbon, which is adjustable with velcro for a perfect fit. This band is much more comfortable than a thin, tight elastic band.

And, when you need a nice neck massage after one of those stress filled days, and there's no one around to pamper you, these neck massagers work great. They are filled with rice, so just pop it in the microwave for a few minutes to heat it up, then put it around your neck and shoulders and let the warmth work its magic on those tight muscles.  Add a matching eye mask, and who needs Calgon? 

I hope I've tempted you a little, because now I'm hosting my first give away. For your pampering and enjoyment, and future good nights sleep, you can win your very own face mask!

Jennee and I had a little disagreement on whether or not I should offer this particular pattern.

"Mom, remember, most of your followers are.....older."

"So. Why? What are you saying, Daughter?"

"Do you think they'll really go for the wild animal look?"

"Well, why wouldn't they?  It's the "IN" thing. We might have one foot in the grave, but we still want it to be stylish....And, isn't 50 the new 40?"

"Puh-leese, Muh-thur!"

We've also been having a disagreement on when to have the drawing. 

"I thought about celebrating 205 followers with a giveaway."  (Why 205? I just thought I'd be different.)

"Mom, you're only at 189."

"Yeah? It shouldn't take that long." 

"It could take a long time. We're not doing the A-Z Bloghop anymore, you know."

KIDS! They think they know it all!

So, I'll compromise. The drawing will be on June 15 or at 205 followers, whichever comes first.

If you are still with me, here are the rules:

1. Follow me. (Please. :)) 
2. Visit After Thoughts Etsy Shop and let me know which product is your favorite. Come back and leave a comment.

For bonus entries:
1. Follow Jennee at Cheap Therapy
2. Tweet about the giveaway
3. Blog about the giveaway.

You must leave a comment for each entry.
Also, for 5 bonus entries, purchase something from her etsy shop

Thank you. And, good luck!!

Monday, May 30, 2011

To Honor Those Who Sacrificed All

Here a few scenes from our Memorial Day Parade:

(My computer is taking forever to upload pictures, so this is just the short version)

May we rememeber every day the cost of freedom, so that it will never be taken for granted. And, may our eyes be opened to see how our freedoms are being threatened every day. 

Thank you to all who are serving and have served.

Friday, May 27, 2011

I need chocolate, NOW!

I am not happy.

I have been in the process of typing out a blog for most of the day. (I've had a lot of interruptions, OK?)

I was on the last leg of my blog. I decided to scroll up to check on something, but, but, but, something was wrong! 

Where. Is. The. Beginning. Of. My. Blog????????????? It is NOWHERE to be found. I uploaded a picture and everything!! Gone. It's all gone.

I'm going to go and make a pan of brownies now. And, I'm going to eat them while I cry! 

I had some good stuff on there, too. Do I really have to try and remember what all I had typed out???? waaaaaa

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Living in "The Attic"

In the Land of Fantasies and Unrealistically Beautiful People, there was a television show called "The Doll House."

Amazing Daughter started watching Season One on Netflix, recently. When she invited me to join her, I thought the plot was too ridiculous to waste my time on. I had more important things to do--like checking my email and deleting the junk, and honing my skills on winning Spider Solitare. I passed on the invite.

But, as she watched, I found myself wandering in and  out of the living room, watching bits and pieces of the show. Then, I found myself sitting in the chair, just to see "what happens next." By the time she was nearly through the season, I was right there with her at the onset of each remaining episode. When she finished the season, I had to go back to the first show to see what I had missed. It turned out to be a pretty good show. Unfortunatelly, it was cancelled after two seasons.

What does this have to do with my title of "Living in The Attic", you ask? If you have seen the show, y ou may know where this is heading. If you haven't seen the show, here's a quick explanation.

The Doll House is run by diabolicle people who control the minds and lives of the volunteers. The volunteers are people who have given up two years of their lives to become a "doll". They sit in a special chair and their minds are wiped clean of their memories and personalities, and then replaced wth the memory of a "super spy", for example, so they have the skills necessary to complete a job for the very rich client, who somehow finds the Doll House, and is willing to pay. (See how crazy this sounds??) When the job has been successfully finished, the Doll returns to the Doll House and sits in the special chair, and the memory of that particular personality is wiped clean. The Doll wakes up, and says, very innocently, "Did I fall asleep?" "Only for a little while." (Oh, Topher! He's so cute.) And, away walks the emotionless, zombie doll, back to their cubicle, until they are needed for another job.

Ocassionally, something goes wrong, and a Doll rebels. (They are able to keep some of their memories, which will obviously cause problems for the Doll House!) When rebellion happens, there is only one place for that Doll to go...The ATTIC!

And, once they are in The Attic, there is no getting out! The Attic is a place where every memory is almost within reach, but never quite attainable. A place where a word is so close to being said, but just can't be brought forth. A place where the mind is tortured.

Oh. My. Gosh. I LIVE IN THE ATTIC!!!!!!!

The only thing that brings me comfort is when I see someone else who is apparently also living in The Attic.

What is THAT word??? (Accompained by a pounding of the head!)

"I'm sorry. I've forgotten your name." (Yes, I know that I've known you for years, but your name has just left my head!)


If you are also living in The Attic, would you like to join me for a cup of coffee sometime?

Hold on. I just thought of a wittier ending...wait. Wait.... now, how was that???? What's the word??? Sorry, it just left me! ARRRRRGGGGGGGG!!!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Project 52 - Week 21

Well, I've had a very busy week. It hasn't been a fun week, but I have gotten a lot of stuff done. Mostly cleaning. So, now you know how un-fun my week has been.  I've been trying to get by cleaning with a "lick and a promise" for quite a long time, and that system eventually catches up with you.

This has been a week of washing and ironing curtains, mopping floors, cleaning carpets. Since the weather has been raining, cold and generally yucky, might as well be spending the time doing generally yucky stuff.  

I still don't have my computer back from the "hospital".  It caught a virus, but, thankfully, I didn't lose any valuable or invaluable information. We only lost some icons, and all the short cuts.  Apparently, this is something that rarely happens.  Usually, all or nothing is lost.  

"We've never seen this happen before."  I really wish that I would have started  keeping track of the number of times I have heard this phrase, and the events that brought them on.  These words have been said in relation to vehicles, appliances, health issues, and now computers.  It makes me feel like we are some kind of freaks of nature that so many "we have never seen this before" statements have been said.  And, of course it takes twice as long to fix/find the problem than usual.  Or, it usually requires some uncommon piece of equipment or tool to fix it properly.  

I've been using Amazing Daughter's laptop, so I'm able to stay connected. I'm trying to get used to blogging "mouse free", and to be honest, I miss that little mouse! 

I've also managed to do a little reading. My reading time has diminished quite a lot because I'm no longer babysitting. (My little babysit-ee always took about a 2 hour nap. I miss that job!) During the A-Z Blogging Challenge in April, I won an e-book by fellow blogger Anne K. Albert, "Frank, Incense, and Muriel".  It's a humorous mystery novel, and I throughly enjoyed it.

I hope you are accomplishing your goals, whether they are on a list, or not!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

How We Met - Hubby's Version aka The CORRECT Version

In honor of my and Hubby's 32nd wedding anniversary, here is the somewhat flawed, in my opinion story of how we met,in 1978, from Hubby's perspective. If you want to read my version, go here. (Or just scroll down in case I don't get the link in.) He insists that his is the correct version. So, without further delay, here is his version, in his own words (more or less.)

First, I spotted her in her orange dress, "Dorothy Hamill" hair-cut, and big....glasses. I had top secret people check her out and see if she was married.
Dorothy Hammil,  (source)

Once I discovered she was available, I went through her line to ask her out. Hoping for a yes, but expecting a no. She turned me down.

My second attempt, I bought some Trail balogna. I took my youngest brother with me. I took him everywhere with me--not thinking of the perception of what it might mean. And, she turned me down again.

After much grueling anguish and rejection, I decided that "three shots for a quarter" was good. If she rejected me a third time, I was done.

So, I decided to go shopping again. As I paced the floor of the supermarket, trying to gain courage, there to my dismay, stood my sister-in-law. She had spotted me. She knew my purpose. She put me in a very peculiar situation. She would be relentless, to the point of being obnoxious, that I be persistent in my goal, or she would make a fool of me. 'Nuff said.

So, I bolted to the counter for my last attempt. My sister-in-law pulled her cart right behind me. There was no backing out. In my mind, I said, "What the heck", and gave it everything I had.

To my delight, she (the beautiful, amazing cashier) said, "Yes." 

I strolled out of the store with her phone number. I was on Cloud Nine.

And, I thought I was nervous before...!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

How Our Story Started

Hubby and I are celebrating our 32nd wedding anniversary. It seems impossible that we are that old already, but it's true. Would it help if I said we married at the legal age of .....ummm.....12? (Is that legal anywhere?? Oh well. One of us has gray hair, and I wish I could say it was Hubby!)

Anyway, way back in the last century, (1978), I was working as a cashier at the big grocery store in town. Remember when the cash registers had buttons on them, and the cashier had to punch the price in? Yeah, it was that far back.

I was home from college after failing miserably in getting my MRS degree. 

Now I  was working as a cashier. I was given my uniform. Yes, uniform. It was a dress, and, of all the myriad of colors available, the color orange was chosen by my employer. It was a vibrant orange, easy to see from miles around. It happened to be the same color as my orange VW Beetle Bug. We looked like a matched set. That was not something I had planned.

One summer day, one of the stock boys came to me and said, "There's a guy in here who wants to ask you out." As he scanned the parking lot, he said "I'll see if his truck is still here."

Truck? The guy doesn't drive a car? Why would someone need a truck? Truck? That's just great.

"Yeah, he's still here."

That immediately sent me into a panic. My line of defense was to leave my register. An accepted form of work was to scour the aisles for shoplifters. My sister also worked there, so we both decided it was time to do our duty and look for shoplifters and/or single guy that wanted to ask me out.

But, apparently, while I was at the back of the store, he was at the front. And so, our paths did not cross that day.

The next time he came in, I had no prior warning. I was at my cash register when this tall, cute, farmer-looking guy, with a young boy at his side came through my aisle. I was surprised when he asked me out. (Was this THE guy, or was it just a coincidence that another guy was asking me out? But, who was this little boy? His son? Was he divorced? Oh my, oh my, what to do?)

The next words that came out of my mouth were so profound, and so intelligent...."Ummmmmmm, I'm sorry. I have to study." (I had signed up to take classes at the local business college, still trying to get my MRS degree.)

And, so, he and the little boy left.

Then, on a busy Saturday, there he was again. Standing in my line. He didn't have the little boy with him, but, who was that woman standing and talking with him?  His wife????  What is going on here?????  

Soon, it was his turn. And, as I rang up his small purchase, he again, asked me for a date. My brillant mind quickly deduced that the woman was not his wife.

So, I said, "Yes, sure."  

I gave him my name and phone number, and he said he'd call. I asked him his name. Oh. Such a common name. I was hoping for something a little more exotic. Oh well. It's a nice name.

After he walked away, my sister, who was running the register next to me said, "Are you crazy? You don't know him!!"

I just said, "Oh, he looks harmless."

This is MY version of our story. I will publish Hubby's version tomorrow. It differs slightly in the number of times he actually asked me out. I say I'm right, he maintains that HE has the correct version.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Project 52 Week 20

Monday, Monday! So good to me... Only Monday is not that good to me today. My computer got sick last night and had to go to computer hospital.  Should have it back by tomorrow, if all goes well.  So, in the meantime, I'm using Amazing Daughter's laptop. I didn't think it would be that much different from mine, but, I'm having my own set of problems. I would try to explain my problems, but that would cause you to shake your head in unbelief at my stupidity.  I can hear my sweet daughter now. Looking at me with pathetic sympathy, ...(I can't find the quotation key....oh there it is...guess I should put on  my glasses, see what I mean?)  She would say, "Oh Mom, it's a good thing you're pretty..."  It's the northern version of "Bless your heart".

SO, today is  Project 52! Last week I was riddled with ADD, but, in spite of that, I did manage to cross off two projects. 

#30 - My garden is in. Technically, my goal was to have a well thought-out plan, and a very organized garden.  I did not plant in nice, straight rows. It may look more like a patchwork quilt when everything starts growing. It seemed like a good idea at the time to  make some rows go lengthwise and some rows go widthwise.  My FIL would roll over in his grave if he saw what I did to my poor garden. 

Here's a little story about my FIL. Every year when the family gets together for Thanksgiving, the afternoon is spent playing Euchre tournaments. It's very serious business. I was always too intimidated to play, but I watched a lot, so I kind of knew how to play. One year, all the guys wanted to play some basketball before the Euchre tournaments began. Poor FIL was stuck with all the women. He finally resigned himself to play some Euchre with the women.  He was unfortunate enough to have me as his partner.  Things were going fairly well, we had a few points. We weren't getting slaughtered. I was starting to gain a little confidence.  We played a few more rounds, when suddenly, he shook his head and said, 'Darlene, I just can't figure out your strategy!" I said, "That's because I don't have one!"  He knew we were beat.

That's how I feel about my garden this year.  No strategy. But, everything is planted, even though it's not quite in typical fashion.

And, #41 is crossed off. My kitchen is all nice and shiny clean. Note to self: Never EVER have white cupboards or white floor again! Never. White always looks so nice and fresh and clean. But, anything white should always come with a warning sign:"Do Not Be Fooled. White only looks good in magazines, because it's a 27/7 job to keep it looking fresh and clean. Don't be fooled." White is a nasty, nasty color.

Another project is for Hubby and I to get our passports. I now have the forms in my possession. Maybe in the next week or so, they will be filled out. Baby steps. We don't have a planned trip at the moment, so there's not a big rush.

Well, there you have my weekly report.  I hope you are making headway with your list of goals.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

R is for Roads - (Repost with pictures)

During the A-Z Blogging Challenge, I had an embarrassing moment. I tried (in vain) to repost an email I had received. It had some amazing photos of "Beautiful and Awesome Roads". (And, might I add Scarey!!)

I was trying to impress My Amazing Daughter by doing all the technological stuff all by myself. I thought I was successful since I had to re-size every picture to fit on my blog page. I was pretty proud of myself, and patting myself on my back. 

Then I got a message from Daughter, "Ummm, MOTH-ER, none of your pictures are showing up. You tried to do something without me, didn't you?"

I was filled with dismay, embarrassment, and horror, as comment by comment mentioned that none of the pictures were showing up. Oh, dear.

After a quick tutorial session from my daughter, I think I have fixed the problem.

So, I hope you will now be able to enjoy these photos. (And, since this did arrive through an email, I have no idea who the photographers are. Don't sue me.)

Monday, May 9, 2011

Project 52 - Week 19

I feel like I'm riddled with ADD today. I have so many projects that I have started and not finished, as well as, projects that must be done today. If you walked through my house, you could easily see where I have been, and where I should be going. 

The weather is beautiful - FINALLY - and I have a ton of plants that need planted. The garden is in, so I can cross that off my list. However, I worked for a few hours at Putt n Stuff (putt-putt golf, go-carts, etc. owned by my brother). As luck would have it, they were busily working on landscaping, dividing hostas, and other plants. I came home with four boxes of plants that need to go in the ground today. I have bags of peet moss, potting soil, opened and scattered. Flower pots all over the place needing filled. A few plants needing to find their home in the vegetable garden. Trust me, it's mess. The car also needs cleaned, desperately. 

This morning when I woke up, I had a sudden urge to clean out my dresser, and start going through old, ugly clothes that have served their purpose (#27).  Unfortuantely, as usually happens, I've gotten distracted before the job was completed. So, clothes are still scattered hither and yon through out the room.

But, that 's not all. Hubby left early this morning, and he wanted to take some of our homemade strawberry wine for his brother to try. But, for some reason, he wanted to put it in a different bottle. Unfortunately, when he opened it, wine spewed everywhere in the kitchen. Apparently, blueberries are not the only fruit to explode! And, now, #41 needs to be done today also! 

So, I probably should cut this post short, and get to work. I have a lot of loose ends to catch up on today. Wish me luck! 

I hope you are getting a lot of your goals accomplished this week.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Thank you, thank you, very much!

Well, I just don't know what to say! Thank you, thank you, thank you! 

Anglers Rest has been kind enough to give me this "Versatile Blogger" award. Please stop by and check out her blog.

I am also supposed to share 7 things about me. I usually go blank when I have to come up with something, but, I'll see what I can do.

1.  I love chocolate, and try to eat it every day.

2.  I love to get awards...they make me all giggly inside.

3.  You would be amazed if you knew how long it has taken me to come up with those two things.

4.  I love summer weather so much more than winter, and if we don't get warm weather soon, I might ...well, what can I do?? I'll just have to wait until it decides to get warm. It's not like I have any control over the weather.

5.  I like to travel, but would never travel alone.  I need Hubby and the rest of the family to keep me from getting lost. I also only like to travel to English-speaking places, because I only speak English.

6.  I love the ocean. I could walk for miles along the beach, but I would also need to pull a wagon behind me, because I like to pick up sea shells along the way.  This annoys Hubby to no end. Even when I try not to pick up shells, I end up with two handfulls.

7.  I could eat Mexican food every single day, and not get tired of it. 

I'm also supposed to pass this award on to another versitile blogger. This is a very hard decision, because there are so many great blogs to choose from. But, I'm going to give this award to RJR DAYDREAMER. He has a blog that is always a treat to read. I hope you enjoy it as well.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Good weather for Ducks

We've been having a very wet, rainy, and cold spring. I don't like it. I don't like it at all!!

Where is the sunshine? The blue sky? The warm weather? Please, come to us now. And, I do mean, NOW!! (Not that I'm being bossy or anything.)

Yesterday, I was out with my mom and sister. We find ourselves visiting Pat Catan's on a fairly regular basis. 

The weather was dreary, rainy, cold. And, in the midst of it, we had a moment of serendipity.

In the middle of the parking lot, we spied this:

We felt certain they would be joining us at Pat Catan's, but, they suddenly veered left, heading to Dunham's Sports. We wondered if they were off to buys shoes or rain gear.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Squirrels - Bah!

Hubby and I have a bird feeder. I've heard that you know you're old when you start watching birds. We do enjoy watching the birds. We especially enjoy the colorful ones, like the cardinals aka Ohio State birds. Squirrel! (That's code for: I'm suddenly veering away from my topic and am going another direction.) The cardinal is the official State Bird for Ohio. We are also fans of Ohio State University, who's colors are scarlet and gray. We are trying to brainwash encourage our granddaughter to love Ohio State University. She lives in Michigan. (OSU and Michigan are bitter rivals.)  I am also trying to teach her the names of birds. So, one day I told her that the cardinal is Ohio's  State bird. But she calls it the Ohio State Bird, like it's Ohio State University's bird.  

O.K. Back to the original story...
The thing that keeps us from enjoying our birds are those doggone squirrels. Now, I know, squirrels can be cute and fun to watch as they frollic around. However...my squirrels are not frollicking. They make a bee-line to our bird feeder. And, I wouldn't even mind it if they just stopped for a little snack. But, they don't. They park themselves on the birdfeeder and eat non-stop until they have cleaned us out! 

I get very irritated. I knock on the window. I yell at them. I hiss at them. I make quite a fool of myself as I try to get them off the birdfeeder.

There is one squirrel who is very determined and persistent. It doesn't matter how many times I try to scare him away, he keeps coming back. Lately, he has become very bold, and will even give me the stare down. He mocks me.

And, for your possible enjoyment, here is a short video of my big, fat, squirrel!

So far, he is winning the battle! But, the war is not over!

Monday, May 2, 2011

Today is a good day!

Now I lay me down to sleep, one less terrorist this world does keep. With all my heart I give my thanks, to those in uniform regardless of ranks. You serve our country and serve it well, with humble hearts your stories tell. So as I rest my weary eyes, while freedom rings our flag still flies. You give your all, do what you must...with God we live and God we trust. Amen. ♥

(I read this as a FB status, and really like it.)

I'm sure you have heard by now, Osama bin Laden in dead! How many Americans have died because of him? Thousands and thousands!! He is also responsible for the deaths of thousands of citizens of other countries.  "Ding dong the witch is dead"! Congratulations to our awesome Navy Seals (Specifically, Seal Team 6), the U.S. military, and President Obama. This is a great victory. God bless America!

The A-Z blogging challenge is over, and I had fulling intended to take a break, then I remembered it was Project 52 day! Had I known about the 26 day challenge when making my list, this would have sooo been on my P-52 list! 

It actually went better than I imagined. There must be more words floating around in my head than I thought, and surprisingly, I was able to find them and get them out! (Uh-oh. That almost sounds like my brain is now empty!)

A big THANK YOU to everyone who stopped by, commented, and are now new followers! It means a lot! I'm only 30 followers away from my goal for the year of 200. Whoo hoo! 

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