Thursday, December 30, 2010

First Memory

I was supposed to have posted this for the Madhouse yesterday, but we're still in "vacation" mode around here, so nothing is on schedule.

The topic of a first memory is interesting to me, as I have a really keen sense of remembering things.

I was adopted at 2 months old, and no, I do not remember that. Even though I now have met my biological mother and she has filled in the blanks for me, I have no recollection of April 22, 1968 and June 11, 1968. I know what I know by snippets passed down from my mom and dad (who adopted me) and from the other side of the fence: what happened prior to and immediately after my birth from my biological mom. I think that's really cool.

I have several kind of first memories tied to when I was about 2 or so. I remember the house in Alabama we lived in.

My dad was an engineer for the Federal Highway Administration and mom quit her job as a secretary a week before I was legally adopted and brought home. Part of the agreement at the time of my adoption was that one parent had to stay home until I was at least two years old.

Let me tell you, my mom never returned to the working world after this precious bundle was in the hizz-ouse. :-) Why would she? She called my dad her "Sugar Daddy" and he provided us all with a very comfy life.

Like many Southern families, we had an African American maid. Her name was Annette James and we all loved her. She and her husband didn't have a vehicle, so if she missed the bus, my dad would drive to pick her up or drop her off, depending on if if was the beginning of her shift or the end. She did laundry, cooking, cleaning and cared for me, even though mom was home all day.

We belonged to a country club because Dad liked to golf (he golfed until almost his last days), but there was a pool at the club and I learned to swim before I was 2 years old.

When I was 2, my mom also had a hysterectomy. Back then, people were in the hospital for days recovering from a surgery like that, so Miss Annette was at our house more than usual. I remember one day, she brought her grandson. He was a year or two older than me and normally, we would not have been allowed to play together - Dad had to work and Mom was in the hospital, so play we did and I recall having a fun day with my new friend.

Dad took me to the hospital to see Mom. We stopped by Morrison's Cafeteria for lunch. I remember seeing ladies smiling at me. It wasn't until we got to the hospital that I knew WHY they were smiling. Apparently, Miss Annette had the day off, so Dad dressed me. In a sweet dress with the buttons going down the FRONT.

When Mom saw me, she said, "Bill, you have her dress on backwards!" There were laughs all around - I didn't get it at the time. I was just happy to see my mum.

I even vaguely remember the pattern on the dress. It was cotton, so it must have been a warm time of the year. I also remember the hospital room, even though there are no photos of the room or the dress.

A year and a half later, my parents adopted a boy (my "brother") and shortly thereafter, we moved to Georgia for Dad's promotion. We left behind our cousins (who we visited regularly) and Miss Annette (who we never saw again). The only picture we have of her is holding my "brother" and it's only her arm in the photo.

I wish I knew the rest of the story from that point on.


I forgot to add the other players from the Madhouse:
Allison – Allimonster Speaks
Barb – Spencer Hill Spinning & Dyeing
Batty – Batty’s Adventures in Spooky Knitting
Dave – Notes from the Field
Evil Twin’s Wife – The Glamorous Life of a Hausfrau
G – Not-A-Box
Heather – She Flies With Her Own Wings
Jennifer – Ask Poops, Please
JMLC – Daydreams and Ruminations
Kate – yoyu mama
LC – LC in Sunny So Cal
Louise – Child of Grace
Marcy – Mittentime
Melanie – usually, things happen
Nikki – Land of the Free, Home of the Depressed
Sara – yoyu mama

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Another Day In The Life

Hello, hooligans. It's Tuesday and we're still on "vacation". I'm starting to get a little nutty about stuff.

First, after we had put the lights on the tree (following testing them all), there was a strand that was only PARTIALLY working. So, that strand is getting the heave-ho. THEN, I woke up this morning to find that Bella the Cat had chewed thru another strand, so that one, too, has to be trashed. Hopefully I can find some lights on discount for next year.

However, that means I have to leave the comfy enclave of my warm house. Not looking forward to that.

I've noticed lately that I have bizarre auditory and other sensory hallucinations in the morning.

I am not a morning person, but I wake up fairly early - between 4 am and 5:30 am, because my bladder is rebelling and needs to GET THE PEE OUT. I swear, I was given a hamster bladder at birth.

So, I get up, go potty and then spend the rest of the morning rolling around in bed, in and out of brief sleep mode and trying to crack my back. It's all very exciting.

Back in the summer, in my half sleep/wake times, I would start to hear things. Like, the doorbell ringing or the phone. For the first 2 or 3 times, I actually got out of bed and found no one had phoned and there was no one at the door. Now, if I hear the doorbell, I wait for a 2nd ring, otherwise, I assume it's another of my auditory/dream induced hallucinations.

Lately, I've been experiencing tactile hallucinations. In my semi-sleep/wake mode, I have the feeling that something needs to be picked up or petted or whatever and when I open my eyes, they ain't nothing there. I find myself reaching for nothing!

It's very disconcerting. I think I ate too much acid in college. But, that's what makes me interesting! :-)

Have a good Tuesday, hooligans!


Monday, December 27, 2010

Merry Merry

I hope you all had some wonderful holiday weekend fun! Did ya notice I took a li'l break there? No? Oh, well.

I was too busy watching the weather and wrapping up the final little details of Santa's visit.

Last week, I skipped the Wednesday Madhouse topic because I was too preoccupied with getting everything finished in time and consumed with anxiety.

The topic was Grace and I've been thinking about that lately. If Buddy had been a girl, his name would be Grace - at that time, it was a name that wasn't heard very often. But, in the 8 years since he was born, it made a comeback and became very popular. So, that knocked it off our short list for Sissy. It's still a lovely name, though.

I like hearing the name Grace. It reminds me of my Nana (who wasn't really my Nana - she was my aunt by marriage mother). But, her and Pops always treated me like a grandchild. They were both immensely talented. I always loved spending time in their home art studio. The smell of the paints, the pottery being fired in the kiln, everything was magical. They allowed me to create anything I wanted and always praised it (even if my clay creations and painted flowers looked like junk).

I think it's important for children to have encouragement to create - whether it's coloring, painting, making Play-Doh sculptures or whatever. The Evil Twin is very artistic and he praises both Buddy and Sissy for whatever attempt they make. Buddy has learned a lot from the Evil Twin and is becoming more and more proficient with his drawings. Sissy is amazingly talented for a not yet 5 year old (and I'm not just bragging because I'm biased LOL).

So, there are my thoughts on Grace. I miss you, Nana. <3 Happy Monday, hooligans! Love,

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Post Christmas Update

I haven't been online much for the past few days. I had SO much to do. Remarkably, I was able to finish up all my "to do" items and Christmas was a hit.

Sissy got the pink DSi she has been coveting for a while and Buddy was loaded up on video games and gift cards. He received over $100 worth of assorted gift cards and cash. Sissy also received an assortment of Zhu Zhu pets. They're really cute and I think Bella likes them too (they scoot all around the floor - very fascinating for a kitten).

Santa even left Bella a few real cat toys, which she has enjoyed immensely. She certainly needs the exercise of playing, otherwise, she'll be shopping at the Hefty Hideaway before too long (The Hefty Hideaway is the name of a store that caters to the "plump" girls in John Waters' film "Hairspray").

I had feared we hadn't done enough for the kids, but ya know what? It turned out to be the perfect holiday. Not over the top and not too little. Awesome!

Santa brought the "Toy Story 3" DVD for Sissy. She and the Evil Twin had seen it in the theatre, but Buddy and I had not. So, after everything wound down, we watched the movie. Honestly, I had my doubts on whether #3 could be equally as entertaining as #1 and #2, but I completely underestimated Pixar. It was really, really sweet and funny.

Now, onto enjoy my lazy Sunday with the fam! Happy Sunday, hooligans!


Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Pre-Holiday Blues?

Is there such a thing? I woke up this morning feeling anxious, tired and depressed. Overwhelmed really.

I had a stack of unopened Christmas cards next to my computer. I half heartedly opened them. Smiled at the pictures and then went back to my blah mood.

The kids are constantly sniping at each other. Buddy is like me and relishes quiet time. Sissy is more like the Evil Twin and talks non-stop. It doesn't take a huge stretch of imagination to know that situation is like oil and water. Over the years, I've developed the skill to block noises out. Buddy has not learned that trick yet.

I don't want to make the traditional Christmas meal. I can't think of anything I'd like to eat, actually - I'm a stress non-eater.

I feel like we didn't do enough for the kids this year, but we're financially teetering right now. We bought them the "normal" amount of gifts as in past years, but it just doesn't seem good enough. I'll perk up on Christmas morning when they open their gifts, I know. They'll be pleased.

I have to go grocery shopping and I really, really do not like crowds, but I HAVE to go if we want food to eat the next few days.

I didn't even check the Wednesday Madhouse topic - I wanted to piss and moan and get all this off my mind. Sorry to be a Debbie Downer.

I hope you hooligans are having a better Wednesday than I am! :-)


Tuesday, December 21, 2010

A New Cat Toy

We hauled the (artificial) tree out over the weekend and began setting it up. We put some lights and some beaded garland on and are slowly getting ornaments on it.

Well, a certain little kitty is fascinated by the whole ordeal. We have to move the bird cage around to the other side of the wall - we put the tree in that corner near the fireplace. So, I'm not sure if Bella thinks they're new birds to mess with or just the relocation has her interest up because she has been bugging them more lately too.

She has already pulled down a bit of garland and has been seen sitting up inside the tree! I thought I was being clever by not putting ornaments on the lower branches, but it seems like she is smarter than me and will just climb up in the tree to play with all the pretty, pretty new "cat toys".

I've been collecting Hallmark and other ornaments since 1993. I have a metric boatload of them:

Yes, all three boxes are loaded to the gills with ornaments and other holiday cheer (tree skirt, stockings, hangers, etc.) The tree is not nearly finished. I promised Sissy that I would wait until she is home from preschool today to hang more stuff because she wants to "help".

Many of my ornaments "do" things, like play music or light up. I have a little elf whose tummy is like a magic 8 ball. You can shake him and get your Christmas questions answered. Let me tell you, Sissy's grubby booger hooks are all over those "magic" ornaments. At least that keeps her attention away from my glass ones.

In all these years, I've only lost one ornament and that was on a real tree that was not properly set in the stand (not naming names here, but the initials are TET) and it was one of my black bulb ornaments (yes, black - I don't do cheery). Oh! And one other ornament - a porcelain one - Hallmark, no less and I bought it on the secondary market (meaning, they don't make that one anymore). The Evil Twin thought it would be nice to display it on top of the TV. Guess which ornament got knocked off the TV? Hmmmmm. He found another one and replaced it. :-) To this day, I don't take that one out of the box.

It's been a weird season for me this year. I just can't seem to get "in the mood" for Christmas (Baby Jesus, I have a headache! <--- I'm going straight to hell for saying that). I remember one year, when Buddy was small. We were overwhelmed, but planned on buying a real tree. In anticipation, I laid a towel on the floor, so if water spilled out of the stand, it wouldn't ruin my carpet. Well, that towel was as far as we got. We called it "The Christmas Towel" and put the gifts on it and just went with it. I kinda wanted to do that this year, only use the tree skirt. The Evil Twin wouldn't hear of it. "The kids want to see the Christmas tree!" Alright, overgrown elf. I do care if the kids are happy, but I knew it would be almost impossible to keep a (now) fat kitten away from it. She's already been chewing on the presents we have (from relatives, I haven't wrapped a damn thing) so I had to put a towel over those (again with the Christmas Towel! What is my scoop?) just to keep her from gnawing at the bows and paper. It's really quiet here. Buddy and Sissy are at school and the Evil Twin is out shopping for stocking gifts - I know he digs buying the candy and little trinkets. And, I'm here, all by my lonesome. I should probably get in the shower before the BO police get tipped off that I'm a mess. ;-) Happy Tuesday, hooligans! Love,

Friday, December 17, 2010

It's All Good

Yesterday, it snowed and snowed and snowed some more. There was no school. There was no way the Evil Twin was getting down our driveway and onto the main road. Seriously, the snow plow came up our road no less than 4 times and within minutes of them moving on, the road was covered again.

When the snow finally stopped (or trickled off a bit), the Evil Twin went out with his snow blower. Our next door neighbor joined him with a shovel. They cleared off 4 driveways and the last little part of our dead end street that the plow never reaches. I went out and sprinkled road salt.

Buddy and Sissy had a great time playing out in the snow, even though it was too powdery to really make snowballs. When they came back inside, all wet and cold, they changed clothes and I made them hot chocolate with marshmallows AND whipped cream topping! Mom of the year over here, yo!

I'm not real good at remembering to feed them, but I will load them up with sugary products. They seem to appreciate that. At least I do make them brush their teeth on a regular basis.

Today marks the last work day for the Evil Twin before he has 16 days of leave for the holidays. Wish us luck to make it to our 18th anniversary in October 2011.

Well, my phone is a beeping at me. It must be something. Then, I need to get my day started. Yes, it's almost 10am and I'm still in my PJs, what of it?? I said I was smart, I never claimed to be motivated. Sheesh!

Love ya, hooligans. I have an extra special Christmas post for next week. Kinda my way of saying "Thanks" for sticking with me and being regulars. :-)

Happy FRIDAY!! <3


Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Manual Dexterity

This week's topic for The Madhouse is manual dexterity. Phew - talk about a tough one!

I've never been graceful or patient or gentle. My mom used to say I was like a "bull in a china shop". They sent me to Charm Schools. Several of them,, in fact. I learned a lot about make-up and how to avoid spider veins on my legs, but being a delicate little flower never really worked for me.

I can knit, but I'm not even remotely as talented as our fearless leader, Kate. I can't get the hang of the more complicated stitches or the stuff that requires lots of patience.

I'm more of a "Point A to Point B" person. Get it started, get it finished and move on to the next task/activity/chore whatever.

I can type very well, despite the fact that I spent the entire time of my 8th grade year in typing class (that term or semester...) in a cast on my left arm that had my arm at a 90 degree angle over the elbow - I could not use my left hand to type. So, for the longest time, I typed quite proficiently with just my right hand.

Spending 5 years in college (yes, I'm a loser) getting a degree in Journalism, I became much better at using BOTH hands to type. And that is how I ended up turning my very expensive college education into a career as a secretary. (not that there's anything wrong with that - the world needs us secretarial types).

My poor, beleaguered mother wanted her children to be well-rounded. I was tossed into piano lessons. I never got past the "Big Note" music books. In FIVE years. Can you say "Waste of time and money?". I can. My younger brother (no biological relation to me, as we were both adopted) can play almost any instrument by ear.

So, I compensate for what I can't do with my hands with what I can do with my brain. Oh sure, I can fold a fitted sheet so it appears to be a flat sheet, but that's just a part of my daily job as the CEO of this family - or, if you prefer, the HO™ - which is the Home Office. The HO™ does most of the grunt work around these parts, so for me to be dainty isn't in the job description.

I don't mind. I can sneak in a nap or two during most days! ;-)

Happy Wednesday, hooligans!


There seems to be a glitch in pulling links in from Wordpress to Blogger, but we'll try this again! :-) Go to Kate's site (above) if the links don't work and you want to read more entries on this topic. I'll figure it out someday.... LOL.

The Other Madhouse Occupants:
Allison – Allimonster Speaks
Barb – Spencer Hill Spinning & Dyeing
Batty – Batty’s Adventures in Spooky Knitting
Dave – Notes from the Field
Eileen - Art Deco Diva Knits
Evil Twin’s Wife – The Glamorous Life of a Hausfrau
G – Not-A-Box
Heather – She Flies With Her Own Wings
Jennifer – Ask Poops, Please
JMLC – Daydreams and Ruminations
Kate – One More Thing
LC – LC in Sunny So Cal
Louise – Child of Grace
Marcy – Mittentime
Melanie – usually, things happen
Nikki – Land of the Free, Home of the Depressed
Sara – yoyu mama

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Willy Wonka

The school district called another 2 hour delay, which means Sissy doesn't have preschool again today. So, we are snuggling in and watching Willy Wonka (the original one with Gene Wilder). In my mind, Gene will always be THE Willy Wonka. It's like watching the film, Romeo and Juliet, directed by Franco Zeffirelli, then having to watch the same movie with Leo DiCaprio (which, in all honesty, I haven't seen it - I could smell the stench vapors coming from the trailer on TV).

I've probably seen this movie 100 times or more and if I ever see it on, I'll sit down and watch it again.

The thing is: with each viewing, I notice something I hadn't noticed before.

Do you have any movies like that? Off the top of my head, I can list this one and Coal Miner's Daughter, with Sissy Spacek. There's just something about that movie that gets me every time. And, I do love Loretta Lynn.

The Evil Twin's big draw - even though he thinks it's stupid - is Grease, and I'm sure a few others he could watch over and over again.

And with that, I bid you a good day, Sir!

Happy Tuesday, hooligans!


Monday, December 13, 2010

First Official Snow Day

When I heard we were going to get some bad weather on Sunday night, I had a feeling that it would be enough to cancel classes for the day.

First, it was a 2 hour delay, which would mean Sissy would not have preschool, and which meant I could sleep a little bit longer. Fine with me.

Then, we got word that the County schools were closed for the day. Sissy slept until 8:45! And Buddy got up around 9:45! I asked him why he was up before noon. LOL. He said he wanted to make the most of his snow day.

I'm going to make the most of his snow day by having him help me put laundry away! Mwahahaha! Hey, he's old enough to pay his dues around here. Sissy might even want to get in on the action!

Yesterday evening, we had some plumbing excitement. Water was backing up in the basement and it turns out we have a blockage way down in the line (like think some where around the middle of the yard). The plumber was able to loosen it and then they'll be back with a camera to identify the exact location, dig and repair. For now, though, we CAN use the water.

It's always something right before the holidays. Usually, it's vehicle related, so I guess we were due for house related.

Oh well, stuff happens, huh? We just have to keep going....

I hope you're having a great Monday, hooligans - and, if you're snowed in like us, keeping warm!


Friday, December 10, 2010

The Yearly Trek

We have our yearly visit to Tamarack scheduled for tomorrow. We meet up with 2 of my aunts, one uncle (we lost Uncle John in February) and my cousin. We have lunch and see Santa.

Typically, the weather turns awful right before our fun day is planned. Fingers crossed we'll wake up to NO SNOW in the morning and will be able to make the trip on down the road.

We're not gone for long - it's pretty much: eat lunch, window shop (cause we can't afford anything there, except maybe a new piece of FiestaWare) and then make the 45 minute drive back home. So, don't anyone plan to rob us - we do have security! ;-)

This has been a tradition for my dad's side of the family for many years. First, it was my mom and dad, the Evil Twin, Buddy, me, my aunt & uncle and cousin from Lewisburg, and my aunt and uncle from Winston-Salem, NC. There was a bunch of us.

Then, my dad died. Then, my mom. A few years later, my Uncle John (Lewisburg). We DID add a member - Sissy - but our numbers still dwindle.

In light of yesterday's post, where I felt kept in the dark about knowing things, I'll post this video. It's short, but funny. The Evil Twin and I crack up every time it's on:


And, Happy Friday, hooligans!


Thursday, December 9, 2010

This Week Sucks

And, it has felt really long, too! Yesterday, there was no preschool because the older kids' schools were on an "early dismissal" schedule, only no one bothered to tell me that. If the bigger kids have an early out, there is no preschool.

It was not listed on the lunch menu as it normally is, so I had no clue. I got Sissy ready for pre-K and in the freezing cold took her to her school. Only no one was out front. I went in the school and was told "No preschool today!"....There was no preschool on Tuesday either, due to the 2 hour delay for the weather. Two days of Sissy and I is a bit much for me.

Don't get me wrong, I love the children with all my heart, but even Momma needs a break sometimes. We call Sissy "Chatty Cathy", since she talks almost nonstop. I love it, she's adorable and she says the funniest things. However, the funny starts to run a bit thin after several hours of it. My brain starts to atrophy and I just can't take it anymore.

I decided to wait until the Evil Twin got home to hit the Mart. I just wanted to go by myself. Of course, it was a shopping nightmare and took forever, but I "got 'er done". LOL.

I did NOT see a sign like this at the Mart:

I guess we don't have many Jewish people in this area, but STILL! OMGosh!

Ok, enough with the funny...I have to get ready to take Sissy to preschool in a bit (IF she has it... - that's another topic for another day, trust me). So, you hooligans are on your own to have a Happy Thursday!


PS. I noticed that the links for the Madhouse thing are all jacked up and I've spent the morning trying to correct them. I don't know what happened. Still looking into it. Sorry 'bout that, but I WILL correct it as soon as I can. Love y'all!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Holiday Bonus

And this is post 1,000 for me! I'm participating in the Madhouse, hosted by our lovely and smart Kate at One More Thing.

When I had an actual J.O.B., before Buddy was born, I received generous holiday bonuses and gifts from my employer. The Evil Twin works for the government and has never received any bonus, much less a raise in years.

I guess our holiday bonus this year will be, once again, seeing the joy in our childrens' faces when they open their gifts.

And, we do not go overboard. Since Buddy was a little dude (and when my parents were alive and always believed in sparing the rod and spoiling the child), things were just out of hand. We felt one child could only play with so many toys in a time period. So, we came up with the idea of 2 gifts from Mom & Dad (that's us), 2 from Grandma and Grandpa and 2 from Santa. After my parents passed away, we changed it to 3 gifts from Mom and Dad and 3 from Santa. Even Sissy knows the routine now.

Our children are far from deprived. They receive nice gifts from us and Santa, and they also receive numerous gifts from extended family members. The amount of "stuff" they get is still sinful, but not completely overboard.

I figure this saves us money, and cuts down on the overall clutter in the house.

The Evil Twin and I do not exchange gifts. We feel like, throughout the year, we treat ourselves to little gifties all year long. This time of year is for the children.

I have the best time shopping for the stocking stuffers. I think the kids like the stockings almost more than they like the other gifts. It's so cute.

I love, love, love seeing their excited faces when they look under the tree.

And, that's my holiday bonus these days. :-)

Happy Wednesday, hooligans and be sure to check out the other participants in the Madhouse.


Allison – Allimonster Speaks
Barb – Spencer Hill Spinning & Dyeing
Batty – Batty’s Adventures in Spooky Knitting
Dave – Notes from the Field
Evil Twin’s Wife – The Glamorous Life of a Hausfrau
G – Not-A-Box
Heather – She Flies With Her Own Wings
Jennifer – Ask Poops, Please
JMLC – Daydreams and Ruminations
Kate – yoyu mama
LC – LC in Sunny So Cal
Louise – Child of Grace
Marcy – Mittentime
Melanie – usually, things happen
Nikki – Land of the Free, Home of the Depressed
Sara – yoyu mama

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

This Would be 1,000

But, I didn't post yesterday, so this is only 999. I just couldn't get motivated yesterday.

I get in a funk when the weather starts turning bad and we've had quite a bit of snow the last few days -  unusual for this early in December. Maybe if we get it out of the way this early, March will actually be nice.

Oh, who am I kidding? We've got months of crap weather ahead.

The county called a 2 hour delay this morning, so that means no preschool. Which, in turn, means Sissy and I are still hanging around in our PJs at 10AM.  Why rush around if I don't have to? That's my personal philosophy.

The upside to colder weather is that Bella has become even more snuggly. She has always slept with me and the Evil Twin, but now, she's sidling up even closer - sometimes even under the covers. And she is soft and warm and I can feel her (and hear her) purring like a motor boat. So cute. This will be Bella Bug's first Christmas and I dread putting the tree up. She's very curious and a little on the mean side when she gets a wild hair.

But, we really need to get that tree up if I'm going to have pictures of the kids (you all know you love that junk) in front of the tree for cards this year. We have a really long last name and I get cramps writing their names on the backs of the photos, even though they both have really short names (like 4 letters and 3 letters) - and that was totally on purpose. We wanted short  first names that couldn't be turned into nicknames, were unusual, but not "made up". I scoured the obituaries. LOL.

Hell, it's not like I send cards to strangers. I should just write their first names and ages! Whoever gets the card should either A. Be related to us or B. Already know our last name. amirite?

Time for me to get my rear in gear and do something with the day. Happy Tuesday, hooligans!


Friday, December 3, 2010

A Very Special Friday

It's been a while since I've received any Friday secrets or mystery pics, but this week? Hello? I hit the freaking motherload.

Check THIS out (it's actually SFW, even if you might not believe it at first glimpse).

 How's that for the sexay? Hmmmm? Scroll down for the uncropped original photo.


I love a big man and I love a hairy man and I love a man with a twisted sense of humor. Doesn't the 1st picture look like a hoo-ha? That's what had me ROFL in the first place.

I love my readers, I really do. Y'all are the best.

Happy Friday, hooligans!


Thursday, December 2, 2010

Shopping is Painful

I have not made it a state secret that the Evil Twin and I (well, mostly me, since I pay all the bills, do the shopping, etc, but it's with the money he earns at his job, so I try to be veeerrry conservative with the bank account) are trying to cut corners in this shitty economy.

We love our home. We all have our "areas" to get away from everyone else or just to chill or do our own thing. We have a lovely back yard - swing set, sand box, comfy patio chairs, a wonderful view, etc. It's not the Taj Mahal, but we love it. We're weird people who love a weird layout and this place fills our weird little hearts.

I went to the Mart of Wal yesterday. I always put an apple (chopped up into wedges) in the Evil Twin's lunch. I put three, 3, THREE apples in a bag yesterday and came home to find out I paid nearly $5 for those three apples!?!? WTF? I know, they're weighed by the pound and these apples were on the large side, but still? Money doesn't grow on trees, but apples sure as fuck do. And, they're plentiful.

Apples are one of the main fruits that the whole family loves. They're healthy, tasty, and a perfect snack (in our opinion, anyways).

I could buy 2 bags of Fritos for less than $5. But, I'd rather have the apples.

In fact, I'm going to start asking total strangers, "How 'bout them apples?" Even if it doesn't apply to the conversation at all. I love people getting all confused. They tend to leave me alone after that.

If it comes down to our home and decent food, the house is gonna win every time. I need to check on the overall price of Ramen noodles now....Thanx, economy.


Happy Thursday, hooligans - This has been the LONGEST week EVAH. :-(

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

No Strings

Once again, I join The Madhouse and will post about a word prompt from the lovely Kate. This weeks prompt is "No Strings".

When I first saw this, I had to laugh. Yes, I laughed.

You see, the Evil Twin and I have our own language and codes and we're also fairly psychic with one another. Instead of getting all weirded out by it, we have fun with it. It's like this: I'll be thinking "I could use a bowl of ice cream." and then, he'll speak out and say, "Hey, how about some ice cream." -- just moments after my thought has turned toward other thoughts.

But, I digress. For us, if someone says "No Strings", that means one partner is either willing to do something "special" for the other and expects nothing in return or wants something "special" and has no plans to return the favor. It's all good.

After nearly 20 years of togetherness, we have both had our fair share of "no strings" experiences -- if ya get my drift here.

Sometimes, entering into a situation of marital congress, it's nice to know the ground rules. That way, no one is left unhappy or has feelings of things being unfair. Sometimes, I'm the giver, sometimes, I'm the taker and vice versa with the Evil Twin.

Of course, there are those times when the takee feels moved to do more and then both parties are happy little clams.

Either way, "no strings" means "no strings attached". There is no obligation on the party who was promised the no strings activity, unless that party feels moved to get involved.

Sorta like a massage or something. We enjoy the "no strings" policy around here. We each know we'll be paid back at some point. It makes marriage so much more exciting!

Happy Wednesday, hooligans! I'll post the list of the Madhouse participants at the end of this post.


Now, go visit some new takes on this subject:

Sara – yoyu mama
JMLC – Daydreams and Ruminations
Batty – Batty’s Adventures in Spooky Knitting
Barb – Spencer Hill Spinning & Dyeing
G – Not-A-Box
Evil Twin’s Wife – The Glamorous Life of a Hausfrau
Louise – Child of Grace
Allison – Allimonster Speaks
Heather – She Flies With Her Own Wings
Melanie – usually, things happen
Jennifer – Ask Poops, Please

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Menfolks, You Don't Want to Read This

I am serious as a heart attack here. DO NOT read this if you are squeamish about "female issues".

I had a hysterectomy in early September. It's still one of the best moves I've made in life, according to me.

Through the grace of God and my stubborn willfulness, I managed to give birth to the 2 children I always wanted. After that, I figured all that inside junk was just cancer waiting to happen. It took me a few years to convince my OB/GYN that the junk just needed removal. I was able to keep my ovaries, so while I am peri-menopausal due to my age, I do have the "good" hormones working for me - at least for a bit.

The thing I am happiest about is no more monthly "female trouble". I started at 12 and even back then, I opted for OB tampons because they seemed less intrusive and easier to use. The thing is, you have to actually touch your va-jay-jay with these. There is no applicator. Those applicator types always skeeved me out.

After the "deed" is done, you have to dispose of the "soiled" applicator. And all that crap goes into a landfill. The plastic ones can take years to decompose. Plus, it's filthy.

This is coming from your conservative correspondent who does not believe in Global Climate Change (global warming) or any of that other horse shit. I just believe in keeping the Earth clean. WHY do ladies still use the plastic or even the scritchy cardboard type tampons when they could use OB or the Diva Cup?

If I had known about the Diva Cup before my surgery, I would certainly have invested in it. Sure, it seems icky, but it's YOUR body. Why would anyone be ashamed to touch their own body parts?

For females, menstruation is a fact of life. It's the giver of life, if you want to see it that way. You ovulate, the lining of the uterus builds up a "nest" for a fertilized egg and that's the way things go.

However, I find the people who would perch in a tree for months to save it from loggers don't want to touch their own lady parts with their hands. WTF???

Follow the lead of this Conservative Republican and save your smarmy plastic tampons applicators for some other use, not in a landfill. That's what is the grossest thought of all. Not that someone touched their own hoo-ha.

You can always wash your hands. You can't always save the environment.

Happy Tuesday, hooligans!

P.S. It is Jeff Kay (from the West Virginia Surf Report)'s birfday. Get over there and wish him happy happy! (Sorry to tack you on the end of a period post, Jeff. You know I love ya!)

Monday, November 29, 2010

Holiday Fun

We had a nice Thanksgiving break. I still had things to do, but my schedule wasn't nearly as packed as usual.

Thanksgiving dinner turned out perfectly. It was just the right amount - in fact, by day 2, the leftovers were polished off.

I think I mentioned last week that we had decided to drop our landline and get a family plan on our cell phones, so I found 2 nice (Android) phones I could get free for the Evil Twin and Buddy, and then added them to my plan. Perfect, right?

Only I wanted them to be able to keep the numbers they already had from our old provider, which is a pay as you go type dealio. That means porting the 2 old numbers to the 2 new phones. Should be a cinch, amiright?

No, in fact, it was the biggest pain in my ass since I tore the USPS a new butthole. The phones arrived on Friday (the day after Thanksgiving) and it was midday Sunday, after probably more than a dozen calls to old company and new company trying to work out the nightmare of moving these numbers.

Buddy, of course, was beside himself - he wanted to get to that phone, so he could find "apps". I told him he could get whatever he wanted, as long as it was free.

Everyone was happy by Sunday when the phones were finally operational. YAY!

So, aside from spending the last 2 days of my vacation on the phone repeating the same information over and over - it was a good holiday!

I hope you all had a lovely break and are getting back into the ol' routine. Happy Monday, hooligans!


Friday, November 26, 2010

There is a Limit

Apparently, on Blogger, one can only follow 300 blogs. I tried to add a new one this morning and was notified that I would have to delete one in order to add the newest addition.

The thing is, some of the blogs I've followed in the past no longer exist and I just hadn't gotten around to taking them off my follow list.

So, just because I "followed" 300 blogs doesn't mean I read 300 blogs a day. Probably a good number of those don't do daily or sometimes, even a monthly post. I tried to be conservative on the unfollowing and tried to make sure I only deleted the ones I knew for sure had no activity whatsoever and had most likely been deleted.

Trust me, if you are a regular blogger, you made the cut. I only deleted 44. And, I even kept the ones who haven't been posting for a while, but I know they're on hiatus for a bit.

Still, it's kinda sad to let go. I've made lots of friends (both IRL and online) through blogging. I've had the good fortune to meet many out of state bloggers when they travel through West Virginia. It's sad to see someone "drop off the grid".

But, I am thankful to know all these people through the years. I hope to meet many more in the future!

If nothing else, I want to be one of your 300. One of the 300 possible blogs you follow. I don't mean I WANT 300 followers, I just want to be on your list! :-)

Now it's time to bust out the leftovers and eat more. I hope you all had a wonderful and FULL Thanksgiving day! Enjoy your Friday (and long weekend)!


Thursday, November 25, 2010

The Grocery Trip

Apparently, I - and every other person in this vicinity - waited until Tuesday evening to get to the grocery for holiday shopping.

The place was swarming with shoppers. I ran into about 6 people I know. One person was a girl we know who is a part time waitress at our favorite local restaurant. I stopped to chat with her and noticed she had a phone in her hand. We had the following conversation:

ETW: Is that an iPhone?
Her: Yes, and it sucks.
ETW: I just got this one (show her my htc EVO).
Her: That's the one I'm getting! Do you just love it??
ETW: Um, well....
Her: Do you even know how to use it?
ETW: No.

At that point we both busted out laughing. She is MUCH younger than me, so obviously way more hip. I told her that I'd had Buddy show me how to use the basics.

Then I said, "It's always beeping and buzzing at me and I have no clue what it wants. It drives me nuts."*

Her: You need the ringtone that says, "Answer your fucking phone."
ETW: Yeah, I do. But I don't think I'd be very popular at the preschool pick up line. I was going to get Cee Lo Green's "Fuck You" song, but I couldn't figure out how to download it.
Her: [Rolls her eyes at me]
ETW: That one wouldn't be very appropriate either, but it's not like my kids haven't heard it all already. [side note: they have not heard the song, but they have heard the "F" word]
Her: Kids today know it all.

Apparently, they do!

We ended up getting a family plan, so Buddy and the Evil Twin are getting new phones too - the Samsung Intercept. We'll have to work with the Evil Twin on all the neat-o features.

* I've actually been picking around on mine and have found several useful features aside from it being a phone. I've also learned that when reviewers listed the worst feature as "battery life", they weren't just whistling Dixie! That thing stinks!

Happy Thanksgiving, hooligans!


Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Giving Thanks

I enlisted myself to take part in a blog "carnival" from Kate of One More Thing. The second link explains it much better than I ever could, but the gist is that every week, the participants (which I will list at the end of this post) are given a word prompt and we're to write our take on that particular word prompt on Wednesdays. This weeks' words were Thanks or Giving or both. I think I'll try to cover both.

At the beginning of November, I noticed several friends on Facebook listing a daily gratitude - something they felt grateful or thankful for that day. I thought it would be fun to join in as I have no good status updates wanted to try to focus on the good things in my life for this month of Thanksgiving.

I think it's well established that Thanksgiving is not my favorite holiday because I'm not fond on the food selections. I know that's just me. Don't get me wrong, there are enough items I DO like that I'm happy.

Mostly, I just love to hang out for the day with no obligations, no place to have to go. It's just me and my little family doing whatever anyone feels like and snacking around all day.

So, I AM grateful for the day to relax with my husband and kiddos.

The month long Facebook challenge to list a gratitude daily has been, surprisingly, difficult for me. As a stay at home mom, my world focuses primarily on my children and the Evil Twin. Then, housework and all that stuff, which I don't think anyone really enjoys, but has to be done.

I think part of my problem is I feel silly listing the "little" things in life that make me happy, but seem kinda "selfish" in a way. Like, "Today, I am grateful for a fuzzy blanket on the couch on a cold morning." I don't know. I shouldn't feel selfish for having a $5 blanket I got at Target that I just love or the fleece throw blankets my biological mom has sent for special occasions.

I guess the lesson here is to count your blessings, no matter how small or insignificant. They all add up to a happy life! :-)

And, with that, I bid you a happy Wednesday, hooligans. I will try to check in tomorrow at some point, but Happy Thanksgiving a little early if I fall into a food coma (those rolls have loads of carbs!) and don't get on the computer until noon or so!


PS. Please sign up with Kate if you want in on the blog carnival!

PPS. Here are the current participants:

Sara – yoyu mama
JMLC – Daydreams and Ruminations
Batty – Batty’s Adventures in Spooky Knitting
Barb – Spencer Hill Spinning & Dyeing
G – Not-A-Box
Evil Twin’s Wife – The Glamorous Life of a Hausfrau
Louise – Child of Grace
Allison – Allimonster Speaks
Heather – She Flies With Her Own Wings
Melanie – usually, things happen
Jennifer – Ask Poops, Please

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Getting a Deal

If you've read my blog for any time at all, you know I pride myself on being the cheapest chick alive (and I don't necessarily mean that in the "Jezebel" way, but sometimes that is also true).

I like good deals. I especially like getting a good deal and having a few free things thrown in. The worst they can say is "No". So, I always ask for discounts/deals/freebies. It may seem shameless - and maybe it is, but the companies I deal with are getting my money (and I'm sure even with a good price, there's a mark up), so if they throw in free shipping or overnight shipping for the price of standard shipping, that can make me very happy in my pants and also pretty much guarantee I will be a repeat shopper at their establishment.

Why wait for Black Friday and fight the crowds for an item you may not possibly get after all? I consider my beauty sleep WAY more important than a semi decent deal at 5 am.

Two things might be my downfall: I like to do research and I like to window shop. I researched our Disney trip we took in May 2009 half to death until I finally found a price I thought was reasonable. I spent from April to August of 2008 researching, then I booked and kept researching.

I'm not looking to "rip off" any company. Whatever I pay will still garner them a profit, I'm sure. But, I'm tired of being nickle and dimed for cable services, phone services, utilities, etc.

The more free market commerce we have, the more competitive prices become. I noticed that once the Kroger gas station in Cross Lanes was in place, they undercut the prices of all other gas stations. My dad used to say that Kroger kept the rest of them honest, and I think that is the case myself - even if toward the end of his life, my Dad and I didn't agree on much in the political realm. (He was more liberal as he got older and I became more conservative).

Anynoodle, I think I started this as a way to segue into the fact I found an awesome deal on a family plan for cell phones. I know I mentioned before, but we're chucking the land line. My phone will be the main phone, but I found such a great deal on a family plan, I think we'll all be happy and we'll save a bit o' money - and helloo? I'm all about the cheap? Keep that in mind.

I look forward to the no phone calls at dinner time. No sales calls and the ability to ignore calls by simply placing my "smartphone"* on its' face.

Now, I shall head off for house work and getting ready for Thanksgiving shopping (YUCK to both). But, I will be back tomorrow with a new ....agenda. I'll explain more later.

Happy Tuesday, hooligans!


* The "smartphone" is not all that smart. I touch buttons I don't mean to and it does weird things. Also, it beeps at me all the time. I can't figure that out. I think it's email notices. :::Le Sigh:::

Monday, November 22, 2010

Thanksgiving Break

I don't remember the schools giving the kids' the entire week of Thanksgiving off. Typically, it's Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, but this year, we get the whole week!

I know they (school board) had bandied the idea around for years. See, this here is West by God Virginia and many schools have literally NO attendance due to the start of hunting season. The schedule would be to have school on Monday and Tuesday, but lots of parents will take their kids out, so they can all hunt. No more truant children this year! They all get holiday time.

Fine with me. I like getting a few days of not having to run around like a loon. However, I do have to work out the logistics of shopping for us and Mr. D for the holiday. I don't want to shop too early and I don't want to shop too late. In fact, I don't want to shop at all.

You know how some people are all "bah-humbug" about Christmas? Well, I'm all "bah-humbug" about Thanksgiving. It's not that I don't like the holiday itself. I just don't care for the menu. It's always the same and I don't like ham or's always just a hassle for me. I'd rather load up on rolls and wine and be done with it.

At least I have football to look forward to (i.e. it's completely acceptable to roll around on the couch "checking out the insides of my eyelids".

This will be Bella's first Thanksgiving and I'm sure she will immediately realize the benefits of being a really cute and much beloved kitty in the house. Judging from the information I gathered from the shelter and the vet, I'm guessing she was born in March, probably April, so she has no clue about turkey falling like manna from Heaven on Thanksgiving - although it's not like she doesn't get little bits of lunch meat every morning as I prepare the Evil Twin's lunch.

This Thanksgiving may turn out to be fun after all. I can flick turkey and ham on the floor and enjoy watching the cat eating it.

Happy Monday, hooligans!


Friday, November 19, 2010

Losing My Mind

The Evil Twin and I are tightening our belts. We finally decided to ditch our landline and cancel most of our cable options. We just don't use the phone or watch the TV (or I should say, we're paying for channels we NEVER watch), we have Netflix, so we won't be hard up for entertainment.

We also figured we would make my cell phone the "main" phone. The Evil Twin has a phone with a generous minute plan - very affordable and plenty of minutes for his usage. Buddy has his cell phone which is pay as you go - he rarely uses it, even to text message his friends.

I started looking around for a "smartphone" with a decent plan that the whole family could use if necessary. I decided to go for the HTC EVO 4G. I've heard nothing but glowing reviews of this phone.

According to the FedEx website, it should be here tomorrow! Yippee!

It was pretty funny - after I had placed my order, I was on the landline phone with a friend and the battery died. I took that as a sign that it's time for us to be "Moving on up, To the East Side, to a deluxe phone plan in the skyyyyy." Oh, sorry. That's "The Jefferson's". (I loved that show!).

Anypoodle, I can't wait to get the new phone. I love new little gadgets. Of course, it'll be something else for me to learn the ins and outs.

I decided to transfer my existing cell number to the new phone instead of our home number. We get so many wrong numbers and sales calls on that line, even though we registered with the "Do Not Call" list.

Now, we'll just have the hassle of letting everyone know to dial the cell number from now on.

Keep your fingers crossed I can figure out this new-fangled technology! LOL.

My kids are off school the entire week next week. I'm actually looking forward to a bit of a break/change in routine. Plus, I think everyone but me is looking forward to the Thanksgiving feast this year. I'm going to try to track down a tofurkey for myself and see how that goes. There! Now, you can tell your friends, "I actually know someone who loves tofu." (it's true, I do!)

Happy Friday, hooligans!


Thursday, November 18, 2010

I Love Survivor

Yes, I am one of those dorks who watches Survivor. I don't watch any other reality shows, like The Bachelor/ette, Dancing with the Stars, Big Brother, etc. I do half watch American Idol, but only to see who wins. (Half watching means the TV is on that channel, but I don't stay glued to the TV the whole time like I do with Survivor).

For me, Survivor is a sociological and psychological wonderland. They put X amount of really different people in isolated and harsh conditions and then we, the viewers, get to see how it all works out (or doesn't work out, in some cases).

I find it fascinating when two very opposite personalities form a bond, a real friendship. I also find it fascinating to see who will get on either one person's nerves or everyone's nerves at some point. There is always a definite pecking order.

But, it's anyone's guess who will end up winning.

I know we don't see every minute of what goes on and that the show is edited (and therefore may show certain people in a certain light, flattering or unflattering), but I also know they can't broadcast 24/7, uncut. I wish they did, though! I would never get a bathroom break! :-)

I love watching them eat nasty things. I love it when the big burly guys gag and carry on, while some delicate flower of a girl chomps on a goat's eye without a thought.

I love it when they have the food auctions and people fight over a mystery plate - could be something good, like a cheeseburger. Could be something foul, like a bowl of intestines with flies buzzing all over it. The flies add an extra special touch, I think. I wonder if those are stunt flies or just regular community flies that happen to just be buzzing around at that time?

I love the reunion show, where the players get a chance to crack on one another or clear up some point of contention.

People make fun of those who do watch reality shows, but I say Survivor is the smartest one on the block.

No spoilers here, but I already have my favorite picked out. I usually don't narrow it down until closer to the end, but if the person I want to win, doesn't, then there is something seriously wrong there!

Do you have a shameful reality show confession? Have you ever owned a Hall & Oates record? We don't judge here, so just let it out....

Happy Thursday, hooligans!


Tuesday, November 16, 2010

It's Gonna Be a Long Week

I can just feel it. Today is gonna be a long day.

Thankfully, the guys from the plumbing place we use showed up a bit ago and got the disposal working like new! They were really nice and funny, too. I enjoy dealing with this company because they are honest and reasonable with the prices. Plus, they will send me a bill, so I don't have to get the sweats writing out a check on the spot. I can just call back and give them the credit card/debit card info.

If you live around my area, EJ Thompson and Sons are the bomb. Call them, you won't be sorry!

It's a crummy, grey day here. Raining like crazy. I think I'll just wash my face, pull my hair back, slap on some make up and go about my day. My hair never fares well in rain and/or humidity, so why bother with a full shower when I can do that later?

And, I have to make a run to the Mart. Stinks! But, I'm hoping that I can take care of a bit of business there. See, I had bought the Toy Story 3 game for her DS a while back. Then, she lost it. It was one of her faves. I felt bad and I bought a new copy as a Christmas gift. Then, the Evil Twin was out blowing leaves off the driveway and found the game under a pile of leaves. I had looked and looked for that little cartridge.

We made sure it still worked and it does. Now, I need to return the newer one and I have no receipt. I don't know why. I keep *everything*, but didn't keep *this* receipt. I'm willing to take store credit and get the Toy Story 3 DVD instead or even exchange it for another game. It's unopened, so it hasn't been played at all.

Thank goodness I was born with the skillz of an attorney, so I typically can state my case in a calm and reasonable way and have no troubles. Again, I'm not trying to get anything "over" on someone, or a company, I just want to return something and make it fair for both parties involved.

Have a non-stressful Tuesday, my hooligans!


Monday, November 15, 2010

And A Good Day to You, Sir!

I hope someone somewhere is having a good day. I'm not.

When the Evil Twin came in to wake me up, I just groaned. I was SO not ready to get out of bed even though I'd gone to bed early-ish (for me) and slept well. I just wanted MORE sleep.

But, I dragged my sorry self out of bed and got moving. I was then told that I needed to call a plumber to look at our disposer TODAY. Long story.... Our internet and phone service wasn't working, so I called the cable company - seems that I had somehow shorted them $15 last month, so our service was cut off. I had already paid an extra $50 over the weekend. :::Sigh::: They turned it back on. Then, the Evil Twin called from work and told me he lost his cell phone. I looked all over the house and the driveway - even called his number a few times in case I might hear it ring. No luck.

A few minutes later, he called and said he found it on the floorboard of his car. It had slipped from his holder and he hadn't noticed.

The windshield wipers on his car are not performing right. There is only one speed of wiping. :::Sigh:::

We have Christmas coming up and 2 nieces and 2 kids' birthdays also in no time, so it's just typical that everything shits the bed at once.

It's one of those days...And it's Monday on top of all that. Sheesh.

I can't wait for next week. For the first time since I can remember, the Thanksgiving holiday for the schools is a full week off: Monday thru Friday. Generally, it's only Wednesday - Friday. A whole week should give me time to recharge and build up for the rest of the school year.

In the attempt to be funny vein, I have a classic line from this morning, as she was deciding what to wear for pre-school today. She could not make up her mind on shoes. She said "I'm having a bad shoe day!" Huh? She wanted to wear two different shoes to school. I told her, "Wear the other pair tomorrow."

I think that worked!

Enjoy the un - awesomeness of the Monday, hooligans.


Friday, November 12, 2010

Fabulous Friday!

Monday used to be my favorite day of the week. The Evil Twin and Buddy would head out the door early and just me and Sissy had the day to ourselves. Then, Mondays got busy and even busier still when Sissy started preschool.

She almost never has school on Fridays, so Friday has become my official "favorite day of the week". Just the two of us and Buddy has taken to walking home from school, so I literally don't have to leave the house on Fridays! Now, that's my kinda day.

I can get caught up on laundry, dishes, etc. Just whatever I can get around to and haven't had much time for all week.

The Evil Twin is home today (took it as a vacation day), so hopefully, I can get quite a bit wrapped up.

My next order of business with our Miss Bella is lead training her. My beloved Chingate (also a Calico) walked on a lead like a dog and would even heel. I didn't have to train her, she just did it. She would hear those metal clips jingling and come running. She knew she'd be getting walkies or going on a ride. She loved to ride in the car. If Bella is even half as smart as Chingate was, I should have a potty trained cat who acts like a dog before too long!

I plan on starting with a harness for Bella, then we'll move to just the collar. Bella is more of a shifty, unpredictable cat than Chingate and I don't want her to choke herself by accident! I love that cat. And, I paid $40 for her! (<--- that is totally sarcastic, but I thought I'd throw it in there 'cause y'all know how cheap I am. LOL). I hope all my hooligans have a great Friday and a wonderful weekend! Love,

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Little Known Fact

Many people are not aware that not only is today Veteran's Day, it's also "Service a Soldier (or Veteran) in a Sexual Manner" Day, too.

I already did my patriotic duty this morning, so I'm golden.

The Evil Twin served his four and four in the Air Force: (that's four years of active duty and four years of inactive duty).

Both of my dads (my dad who raised me and my biological dad) served in the Army.

I do love a man in uniform. The ladies, too! The Evil Twin's ex is still serving - she is way up in the ranks and she looks adorable in her uniform. She looks adorable in a sundress, too, but she just has the perfect body for all clothing items.

Buddy, Sissy and the Evil Twin all have the day off from school/work respectively. They can all hang around and do whatever. I have to go to Mr. Ds house eventually for cleaning duties, but I don't mind. It's a beautiful day out, so I'll get out of the house for a bit and keep Mr. D company, too. I always enjoy our conversations.

Have a lovely Thursday, hooligans and keep our military men and women in your good thoughts. :-)


Wednesday, November 10, 2010

It's Always An Adventure

With the Evil Twin's Wife. I don't go anywhere or do anything that I do not see craziness around every corner.

My whole life has been full of the weird, but I dig it - embrace it. I have a good sense of humor. (thank goodness).

So, yesterday, I went to Kroger to pick up a few random items. Tuesday here is Senior Day at the groceries and they get, I don't know, something like a 5% discount on their groceries. The parking lot was packed. But, I don't have a problem with the older generation the way a certain friend of mine does. She can't get a break!

Anyhoodle, I park out in left field and as I'm walking to the store, I see a woman scowling at me. I wonder why, then I realize, "It's the hair." They wonder why I hate my mother so much that I would dye it purple. First of all, the mom who raised me is, unfortunately, no longer with us and secondly, I loved her with all my heart. I think by the end of her life, she had come to terms with the fact that I would have odd hair and wear things no one else would wear in public. She just kinda rolled with it.

My biological mom, Nana M, is every bit as out there as me, and she loves the purple. So there! scowly lady in the Kroger parking lot!

I was buzzing around the deli/cheese area looking for Edam cheese for my not-so-boss when an older gentleman approached me and asked if the purple hair ran in the family. And he had a huge smile on his face, so I knew he was just joshing me a bit. I shrugged and said, "It is what it is." He laughed, I laughed and we parted ways.

When I finished with check out, I noticed that there was a Salvation Army kettle by the sliding doors. I have a metric boatload of change (Sissy gets shiny coins, then "trades" them to me for paper money), so I put some change in the kettle. The SA worker (a younger girl) said, "I love your hair!" LOL.

I love living in a small town. I just never know what I'm going to encounter!

Happy Wednesday (or perhaps it is your Friday, like the Evil Twin who has tomorrow off for Veteran's Day and took Friday off as a vacation day), hooligans!


Tuesday, November 9, 2010


The Evil Twin and I parent much like our own parents did and that is to say, give the kids space to be who they want to be. There are guidelines and general expectations, of course.

My parents never censored what I read, watched, whatever. If they knew what I was learning, they might have thought, "Holy shit! She's too young for this." But, I turned out no worse for the wear.

The Evil Twin and his siblings would leave the house in the mornings and not return until dusk. They got into lots of things they shouldn't have, but they all grew up to be responsible citizens and very well adjusted.

Several years ago, we upgraded the Evil Twin's desktop computer and gave his old one to Buddy. We set it up for wi-fi and stuck it in his room. I never check the history or even butt in to see what he's doing because when I walk by his room, I could tell he was playing computer games - and not racy ones either. Kind of like they build something, then interact with that environment. Which I would consider a learning type of game. You know, finding out what works and what doesn't work in a design.

A few summers ago, we noticed that he would sleep very late, but then again, we let him stay up later in the summer AND we're both night owls/not morning people, so I chalked it up to that. Then, we discovered he was getting up at night and playing on the computer. So, we started by taking the mouse and power cord every evening. That seemed to have broken him of that habit.

But I can remember when I was a kid - about his age - I would put a flashlight under the covers and read until the wee hours.

Thing is, I would still be ready to get up for school or whatever. I might have been tired, but I took care of my responsibilities of getting ready in the morning with little prompting.

Fast forward to the past couple of weeks. Buddy now has a laptop (the desktop was on its' last legs) and I started to notice that he was very difficult to wake in the mornings. He gets in bed by 9:30 on school nights and never had any problems getting up at 6:45 the next morning. Suddenly....Hmmmmmm.

Last night, just after 10pm, I just walked to his room and opened the door without knocking. There he was, glued to his computer. All I said was, "Hand it over." I put it in our room and there it still sits.

The Evil Twin thinks we should take it away for a week for this infraction. If he does the same thing again, then it'll be taken away for 2 weeks. I'm really at my wits end here. He's a good kid, smart and he's not doing anything sketchy online (just playing the games), but... I don't know. Like I said, I did the same thing with books and a flashlight under my covers at his age. But, he needs his sleep to do well in school.

Sometimes, this momming stuff is really, really hard.

Happy Tuesday, hooligans, while I contemplate my dilemma here.


Monday, November 8, 2010

*Blink* *Blink*

Another weekend gone in a blink! I've said it before and will say it again: I am not a fan of DST. It doesn't really seem so much like an extra hour as it feels like just some kind of hell to throw my schedule off for a few weeks. I don't care about the damn hour. I care about my regular routine!

You know who doesn't care about an hour, a week or a month? The mom of a preemie. My Buddy spent 6 and a half weeks in the NICU and I quit caring about time. I haven't been in a hurry in almost 13 years. It's very liberating.

The other drivers on the road don't think my method is very good, though. I tend to have people riding my back end all the time. In my passive aggressive way, I just slow it down a few more MPH.

I DO wish I could slow down the weekends, though. It probably doesn't help that I tend to nap a lot on Saturdays and Sundays.

What? You thought I actually got a break on sleeping any other time? Sissy is a very early bird, while Buddy would sleep all day if we let him. Even if I let her stay up later, she's still up before the sun. Clearly, God has a sense of humor and wants me to bend to be a morning person. Not gonna happen. I may wake up very early, but I make sure to squeeze in a nap at some point.

I did get the most excellent #Follow Friday recommendation from ...A Sour Apple Tree :

How cool is that? More people should discuss my boobs. Feel free to share your comments below. LOL.

Alrighty, hooligans, try to embrace the Monday. It is not very awesome, but it happens. :-(


Friday, November 5, 2010

No Secrets, But A Surprise

It's a dreary day here in our little burg. Sissy caught the creeping crud that's been going around and let me tell you, whatever it is, it really puts one down for the count.

She laid around all afternoon yesterday after preschool and got in bed early. She was burning up, so I gave her some medicine to bring her fever down. The Evil Twin and I kept checking on her through the night. Once, she woke up and had peed on her bed (she was most likely so out of it from the cold med). So, I got her up, changed her undies and since she was still hot, let her get in bed with us with no other clothing on. She clung to me like a squirrel monkey all night.

It's so pathetic to see them feeling so puny. I think she might have the same one-two punch that I had - both the cold and the stomach virus. She hasn't thrown up (yet), but I dealt with puke yesterday and I'm prepared to deal with it today as well.

Luckily, I have no plans. There is no preschool on Fridays and Buddy has decided he'd like to walk home from school. So, unless I get a call from him that he wants a ride, I don't even have to leave the house today!

Me and Miss Sissy can snuggle in and watch cartoons all day. I like that schedule. :-)

Also, there haven't been any Friday Secrets for a while, so I thought I'd throw in a little treat to keep y'all occupied.

Happy Friday, hooligans!


Thursday, November 4, 2010

Weekend? Please Hurry KTHXBAI

This week has seemed impossibly long already. Maybe it's because we were gone all last weekend, then had a few days off that threw my schedule off. Who knows?

I have the lovely pleasure of cleaning up cat puke off our light colored carpet downstairs. And, she didn't just stand in one spot to do it. No, she was apparently (judging by the vomit splatters) jumping down the hall for every upchuck. Thank goodness for Oxyclean! I love that stuff.

Our main floor is mostly hardwood floors and porcelain tile. Why couldn't she chose one of those surfaces for her vomitorium? Whatevs, I still love her. She couldn't help it if her stomach was upset.

Let's face it, if you have kids or pets, you'll be faced with vomit, poop and other bodily waste activities for a long, long time. I can forgive Bella for the vomit episode because I'm just so darn glad we don't have a litter box in the house! (Bella uses the people potty for her business - I just sashay by every now and again and flush for her).

It's funny - for as much as the Evil Twin and I have in common, we're opposites on what we can and cannot deal with. For example, puke and poop are not a problem for me to clean. Bleeding and tooth pulling is absolutely something I can't be rational about. If Buddy has a loose tooth and the Evil Twin is trying to pull it, I'm cowering in our bedroom with my hands over my ears. It's all about the teamwork around casa Evil Twin! :-)

Keeping with Gratitude November: I am grateful for a warm house and a loving spouse. After years of kissing toads, I finally found my prince.

I'm off to continue my cat puke clean up detail, but I hope you hooligans have a happy Thursday!


Wednesday, November 3, 2010

A Kink in my Routine

I didn't post anything yesterday - I know there are about 5 of you who are seriously disappointed - but it's just been a weird week.

After our trip to Cass, the Evil Twin took Monday off as a vacation day because he had Tuesday off as a holiday (Election Day) and decided to make it a long weekend. Trust me, he has a blue million days of leave time, so one day off doesn't really cut into his vacation time.

Also, the kids didn't have school yesterday. The polling places are in our public schools.

The Evil Twin, Sissy and I went to the polls, Buddy stayed home. Those of us who are old enough voted, but I did lift Sissy up to see my ballot and tried to explain the voting process to her.

Once again, I did not get an "I voted" sticker. I don't know...I don't think our precinct has them or something because I never get one and - come on! - Sissy is an adorable 4.5 year old. You'd think she'd be plastered in stickers. The Mart of Wal always gives her several!

Speaking of the Mart, after the voting stuff, we trekked on to the store to load up on the week's supply of food and etc. I always enjoy help from the Evil Twin for lifting heavy items and also I shop for us and Mr. D at the same time - I do 2 separate transactions and it's easier if the Evil Twin is there to help me sort the 2 purchases.

November is supposedly the "Month of Gratitude", listing one thing every day for which I am grateful. Today's gratitude is: I'm grateful for a calico kitten who makes me smile all the time, even when her one mean Tabby leg is getting her into trouble! You can't argue with furry cuteness. :-)

It's "Housework Wednesday" for me, so I am off to start work. I hope you all have a rockin' Hump Day, hooligans!


Monday, November 1, 2010

Choo Chooo!

Saturday, the Evil Twin and I celebrated 17 years of marriage! We have been together for over 18 years, which I find amazing.

We're used to not being able to celebrate on our own since Buddy was born, simply because there are typically Halloween activities going on either on or around our anniversary - something we hadn't thought of when we chose the date back in 1993!

I heard about the Halloween Train ride at Cass Scenic Railroad and thought that would be a blast. Then, the Evil Twin reminded me that Sissy freaks out just seeing people in monster masks. I had already made reservations to ride the train and stay in one of the company houses in Cass. I called back to see if we could go up on the 16th of October and ride the 2:30 train, but all the houses were booked, so I stuck with the 30th and changed to the 2:30 train - which was just the regular ride up to Whitaker Station and back (about a 2 hour trip).

We've done this twice with Buddy, but Sissy had never been and we had never stayed in the company houses before either.

The houses have been refurbished with modern kitchens and bathrooms, spruced up, but still retain their quaintness and charm. Our house was so cute. We had 3 bedrooms - 2 with full sized beds and 1 with 2 single beds. The rooms all have closets, dressers and nightstands. The beds were comfy and clean.

As far as I know, all the houses are 2 story. Ours had the bedrooms and bathrooms upstairs and the TV room, dining room and kitchen on the first floor. We had a wooden swing on the front porch, which was a nice touch. It was a beautiful, sunny day, but a little nippy.

A view of the river:

We had a good time, even though the route to get there is nothing but "kiss your butt" curves and Sissy threw up twice on the way up. I wised up and gave her Dramamine early the next morning before we left and she did fine on the trip home.

I'll have to sort through my pictures later and maybe I can find one or two more decent shots. It's hard to get a clear shot on the bumpy train ride!

Happy Monday, hooligans!


Friday, October 29, 2010

Stranded and a Halloween Recap

Today is the first day in a very long time where I have nothing going on and no way to do it even if I did.

My van is in the shop getting new rear brakes. We had the front brakes replaced a few months ago and of course, a few weeks later, the back ones started squealing.

It's sort of like my theory on light bulbs. Once one bulb on a fixture goes out, I already know the rest of them will go out, one by one, in the coming days. Good thing we stock up on light bulbs - we go through them around here!

Anyhoodle, having no vehicle means I can just kinda piddle around today. I do have a few things I need to do around the house, but I can squeeze in some much needed rest in there somewhere today! Yay!

Last night was Trick or Treat here. Buddy decided he is too old for the T or T routine and Sissy is terrified of anyone in a mask, so I just bought a couple of big bags of candy for us. This is our first year actually just staying home and I really didn't expect any kids (there's that long, steep driveway thing, ya know). Lo and behold, we did have a handful (one group) of about 6 kids. That was it. I waited for more, but hey, I wouldn't walk up this driveway for a couple of o' pieces of candy, either.

You're probably wondering why Trick or Treat was last night. Well, here in the bible belt West Virginia, lots of people think Halloween is a satanic type holiday or something like that. Also, many people attend church on Wednesday evenings and twice on Sundays (AM and PM). Then, there are the powers that be who believe having trick or treat on a weekend night leads to more mayhem (kids staying out later, getting into trouble, etc.). That leaves us with Monday, Tuesday and Thursday. Whichever of those days falls closest to the 31st (but isn't the 31st) is VOILA! Halloween night here. From 6 to 8 pm.

When I was younger and we lived in Georgia, we'd be schlepping our pumpkin buckets around for *hours*. Sometimes, even making a pit stop back home to empty it and go back out on a different street.

I don't think every county in WV has this same set up, but it seems like most do. Because of the limited time frame, you better believe your doorbell will be going "bing bong" at the stroke of 6pm. Like I said, I didn't expect any kids at all, so I was resting on the couch, when shortly after 6pm, *Bing Bong*! I didn't even have the candy open or in the fancy $1 Halloween bucket I bought years ago for one of Buddy's class parties.

I had to hustle to get it together. The kids were real sweet. I let them choose what they liked. I don't know about you, but I always hated getting candy I didn't like at Halloween (things like - GAG - Necco Wafers or Candy Corn). We still have a huge bowl of candy left. But, you know what? I enjoyed not having to wrestle the kids into itchy polyester costumes and try to not forget anything while racing out the door to go to our friends' house. They live in a neighborhood with more children, thus, more houses participating.

I'm sure in a few years, when Sissy gets over her fear of masks, we'll be schlepping her around the neighborhood here - or we can have Buddy be her chaperone while the Evil Twin and I do the hibbity dibbity hand out candy!

This is getting verbose, I know, but before I end it, I would like to thank the throngs of spiders who live around our house for doing the cobweb decorations. I wouldn't have even put that much effort into it, even though it's one of my favorite holidays. So, Thanks, spiders! I've always loved you, but this year, I owe you a solid.

Happy Halloween, hooligans. Remember to check your candy for pins, razors and/or poisons. Be safe and have a spooktacular time!