Monday, July 23, 2012

When Books Disappoint

I'm a voracious reader.  I go through about 100-130 books a year.  Probably double that go through my hands.  If I am not grabbed by a book in the first 20 pages or so, I'm done with it.  There are too many good ones out there to make myself plod through one I don't like.

I read reviews and make lists.  The one "must read" of the summer, so I read, was Gillian Flynn's "Gone Girl".  I had read her first two books (Sharp Objects and Dark Places)  while I waited impatiently for my request to go through the channels at my library.  Those I liked, especially, Sharp Objects.  I am an equal opportunity reader.  I use the library, my used book store, my Kindle, and garage sales to keep up wit the hunt of a good book.  When I see "must read/great beach book"  I get excited that I'll be in for a treat.

So I borrowed this pic from Amazon to let you look for yourself.  Hopefully it will work.

I was greatly disappointed.  It was one of the few books that I made myself finish.  I didn't like the characters.  I felt no connection whatsoever.  I didn't care if they got themselves out of the mess they were in.    All the reviews have been great, so it must be me.  I'm curious at what other readers thought.  Well.... I just called Daughter # 1 since she was reading it too.  She left it half way through.....and felt the same way I did.

I'm pretty sure I have mentioned in another post (but I'm not going to go hunt it down) that the other books I felt that way about are: Angela's Ashes, Cold Mountain, and Water for Elephants.  

Have there been books that have disappointed you and made you wonder why?    I'm curious to know what they are.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

I'm Melting

Looks like half the country is suffering from abnormal heat patterns so I know I'm not alone in this.  I live in the south.  This summer has been pretty standard for here,  I think.  Hot, hotter, and damn hot.  This is my 4th southern summer after moving from "Up North".  Even "Up North" has seen 100 degrees this summer and had heat advisories out just yesterday. 

This humidity makes me sweat.  I'm not a girl that is used to sweating.  I'm not a sports kinda girl.  If I ever sweat in the past, I knew I needed to stop doing whatever it was I was doing. About 10 years ago,  I remember my mother asking me if my head/scalp sweated.  It didn't then but now it does.  What's up with that?  It must be an age thing.  It's not attractive to look like I just came out of the pool when I'm in Target!   

I found two more tables to paint last week.  I can't do that because they both have been spray painted black over the original finish and I need to use a paint stripper to see what's under that paint.  To use a stripper, I  need to have them outdoors so I don't breathe in the fumes.  The directions on the can also say to use on a "cool" surface 60-85 degrees and out of the sun.  That leaves me out.  Before moving, we had a garage and that might have worked, but here at the condo, I don't.  That may be a fall project now.

So I'm a little grumpy that I can't do what I want to do because it's too darn hot.

Don't you love Maxine?  Thank you Hallmark for giving this woman of wisdom to us.

I think I'll take Maxine's advice.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Sounds of Summer

Summer, to me, has always been associated with certain music. Ever since Jimmy Buffet sang about Margaritaville in   , I have been a fan.  At one time, we had a Margaritaville deck, and this was in Michigan, where there is nothing remotely tropical.  His music took me to "summer". 

Now, summer isn't summer without a new Kenny Chesney CD.  Since one came out about 3 weeks ago, I am a happy camper right now.  I am right there with him, looking at pretty blue water and hearing the steel drums of the islands, no matter where I am.

But the summers of my "boomer" youth belonged to The Beach Boys.  Snow could be knee deep and the thermometer could read 0, but when The Beach Boys came on the radio, it was summer in our hearts.

From Good Vibrations, California Girls, Fun, Fun, Fun  to Surfin USA ,  I know I was heading to or thinking about the beach and summer.   Being the girly girl that I was and still am, I liked their slow songs  best.   Surfer Girl,  Don't Worry Baby and In My Room.

Surfer Girl..... 1964

In 1988 they had another hit that has become a summer song too.  Kokomo Island was in Jamaica but is now known as Sandals Cay, which sounds to me like a part of the Sandals Resort. 

So no matter where I am, or what the season really is,  when I hear this music, it's summer in my heart.

Do you have any favorite summer songs?  Any songs that take you back to summers of long ago?

Friday, July 13, 2012

Song Time

I haven't posted a song in a few weeks and thought it was time to visit one of my favorites.

Through the years I have had friends that have found themselves in this situation.  I  won't go into the judgement of it, but only the heartache.  It never turns out well.

I've seen a friend marry one of these "Mr. Jones" only to find out he was seeing another "Mrs. Jones" some years later. She had been wife #3.  He moved on. 

Another friend had a 10 year relationship with a married man.  10 years.  wow....Finally it ended.  Probably like this.

From 1972, Billy Paul's "Me and Mrs. Jones".

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Drive In Movies

Being a fan of PBS, you just never know what is going to be on their schedules.  Usually a lot of the really good things are on during their "Beg for Money" events and I really don't like the long breaks they take to raise their funds during those.  Yes, I know it is a necessary evil and I have given because... I do watch.  The other night we watched an interesting history of Drive In movies that I had DVRed.

Drive-ins began in the late 1930s, really hitting their peak in the 1950s and 60s.  Of course, that's prime time for us Baby Boomers.

Our parents had young families and for the most part, it was much cheaper to pop your own popcorn, fill up the cooler with drinks, load up the kids (that would be us) and take off for a night at the Drive In showing 2 movies.  My sister and I would sit in the back seat, but my brother, being 6 years younger than me, 3 years younger than my sister (the middle child and she has an opinion about that poor overlooked child) would lay in the rear window so he could see.  That would be probably about 1958-1962ish. 

We wanted to go play on the swings and slides way up front, under the big screen, but we were never allowed to do that.  I don't think either of our parents wanted to go supervise. It could also have something to do with the fact, we were always in our pajams too. We were allowed, once in a while, to lay on the hood of the car, if we didn't get in their viewing way.

I was in high school from 1964 - 1968 and did my share of  Drive-in dates.  That's where I saw the Billy Jack movies and the Annette and Frankie Beach Party movies.

We still sometimes, popped our own popcorn to bring in but I think the dates would go inside to get drinks. I do know that on some of my double dates, my girlfriends wanted those giant pickles.  I never could understand that.  Give me the popcorn, thank you.

I know we did try those little mosquito coils you would light  and sit on the dashboard to help keep the bugs away.  I can say, I was never in a car that drove off with the speaker still attached.  That happened lots, I'm sure.

I think Daylight Saving Time killed the Drive-ins.  It's so late by the time it gets dark enough to see what's on the screen.  I think there are still a few stragglers that are open, but they are the rare case.  Now, in this economy, they would be a good treat for cash strapped families.... but, there is that Daylight Savings thing still.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Random Thoughts

1.  In the last couple of weeks we have lost a couple of television icons for us baby boomers.   One was Don Grady from MY THREE SONS (1960 - 1972).   Oh, my goodness.  I thought he was the cutest thing walking, back then.  He was also one of the original Mouseketeers before he got that job and went on to be a musician and composer.  He composed the theme to the Phil Donahue show. Who knew?

See, cutest brother, right?

2.  The other loss was Andy Griffith.  Of course,  THE ANDY GRIFFITH SHOW (1960 -1968)  was required watching for baby boomers. Mayberry was a small  town where Deputy Barney Fife was only allowed to carry one bullet in his pocket, not in his gun.

For a short time we were able to watch little Oppie grow through the trials and tribulations of childhood with the gentle guidance of his Dad and Aunt Bea.

I know Andy went on to do other things, like MATLOCK, (that my mother loved) but I think of him in Mayberry,  or maybe, sitting on that park bench, "Waitin' On a Woman" with Brad Paisley.

3. I had to stop watching "Dallas". I couldn't get past Larry Harman's eyebrows. Trim those things. 

4.  TOMKAT ....what can I say?   Lots!   I was a Tom Cruise fan for many years.  You've heard the phrase, "jumping the shark"??  It originated when Fronzie from Happy Days did just that on one episode and there after it became known as the moment when everything goes down hill.  Or, the British term is "going pearshaped". 

So, for me, when Tom jumped the couch on Oprah, that was pretty much it for me. (Maverick would not be jumping on a couch!)  Then he got into the argument with Matt Lauer on the Today Show and that only added reinforcement for me.

Poor Katie (he always said "Kate" - seriously) Holmes rarely said a work after the first gush was over.  I loved the t-shirts and websites that said "Free Katie".  I guess she got tired of all the stuff that goes with Tom and decided to get out of Dodge.... or California, anyway.  So, Katie, I say...."Well done."

I have to thank Google for all the photos from my childhood.  Thanks for the memories.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Little Cupboard Gets New Life

This is my second  piece of painted furniture.  I found it at the flea market and paid more than I would generally, but I liked the little bugger so I had to bring it home.  The owners wanted $30.00. I got it for $20.00.

I'm not sure what to use it for now that it is all spiffed up.  CDs or DVDs  would fit.

All of the doors and trim in our condo are painted pure white so this keeps in line with that crispness .  I used a high gloss spray enamel paint this.

I lined the inside back with pale blue and white print......scrapbooking pages.

I have one more little table that will will paint white to go on the front porch but now I'm looking for something to paint a real color and distress.  Saturday is Garage and flea Market time again.   This could be fun.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Bedside Table Redo

I had a great day Garage Saling a couple of weeks ago and found two beat up  tables that were crying out my name.   I have not joined the painted furniture set until I came across some blogs that spurred my interest.  Back in the 1980's I did a bit of stripping and refinishing furniture so buying wood furniture to paint was a shock to my system.  It didn't compute.   Boy, it sure does now.

So I have a couple of items to start slowly on and see how much and how far I will take it. There are so many paints types and finishes to choose now.  There are chalk paints and milk paints.  Do you distress the wear points or go for a polished new look.  Do you wax or not and if you do, is it with a light or dark wax?  I'm learning and deciding as I go.  To begin with, I'm sticking with as simple as possible.  So far, so good.

This poor thing was pretty beat up.  I asked "How much?" and the owner answered "How much will you give me?"  $5.00.........  and she took it.  I didn't expect that.  I thought I'd start low and go up, but not too far up.  It's pressed board. Not real wood, but it is heavy.

So I sanded it, filled in the holes and scratches, primed and painted it with a very light beige, eggshell finish that I applied with a skinny sponge roller. My original plan had been to refinish the top in cherry to match my bed, but, I soon discovered, it wasn't good wood, so I had to pitch that idea.

I did use  a beige enamel spray paint on the hardware.    So, I can't say I now have a $5.00 bedside table.  No, no ,no.   I had to go to Lowes to buy primer, paint, spray paint, and rollers.  I'm $60 into all that.

But, I still have the other table/cabinet to show you tomorrow and I just bought another small table for my porch for $3.00.   I think I'm getting the hang of this.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Back From Florida

I'm back from my Florida St. Pete/Tampa trip.  I got home days a few days before all the fury of tropical storm Debby hit that area.  My cousin Kelly and family live in Tampa and on a higher elevation  than some areas, so she has been texting me that they have no flooding..

The first two days we were there, though, we spent at the most adorable "Old Florida" style guestrooms in St. Pete's on Tampa Bay.  Exactly! That's where all the rain has been for days.  I hope our little oasis is safe.

First, I have to share this photo.  I have said many times,  that I am not a good flyer, but I'm first at the gate to go.  This is the seat across the aisle from me on my Delta Connection flight into Atlanta.  Nothing like seeing Delta Duct Tape holding the armrest on for reassuance is there?

The units we had were one bedroom/one bath (to the left) with a connecting door (to the right) to the next unit.  Cousin Kelly, her daughter Kate and her Mom Sylvia shared one and my sister,  Judy and I shared the other.  It was perfect.

Those huge buildings on each side of this little bit of paradise are condos. 

Condos with no balconies facing the beach.  This view shows, from the beach, how massive these things are.  Why would you build condos on such expensive land with no balconies?  I think the next question is why would you buy one?    Do you think they are that much less expensive, due to the lack of a balcony, compared to others with one?  You can tell I'm a bit puzzled by that.

The reunion was a great success.  We had not been together in at least 25 years and we all got along like no time had passed.  It's so nice to have them back in my life again.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Random Thoughts

I'm in the midst of washing laundry and packing to leave for Florida in the early AM tomorrow but I've had a couple of things bumping around in my head.

1.  Whatever happened to Kitty Bartholomew?   Her motto was "It's not what you have. It's what you do with what you have."  Before there was Martha Stewart, there was Kitty.

I was fascinated with that gray streak in her hair.  That's how my gray started but I didn't have her "own it" philosophy, so I colored mine.   I liked her.  Wonder where she is now.

2.  I DVRed Dallas last night.  I haven't watched it yet.  Is anyone else watching because we missed J.R., Sue Ellen and Bobby?  I, for one, loved those big shoulder pads and the sequins that were forever present.  No, I know I'm not going to see those again.  OK, maybe a little glitter when it comes to the Cattle Barons Ball. Right?    Bobby and Pam were my favorites, back in the day.  I'm sorry she is not included in this one too.  From articles I have read (which said she chose not to be a part of then interview) it seems there may have been a little dissension there.  I'll miss Pamela Ewing.

3.  The DOJ is not going after John Edwards anymore.  Good.  Big waste of $$$ I think.  There are far worse criminals out there.  Go after them.  We all know this one is a scum bag.  He has already lost the lone thing most important to him. His reputation and his career.

4.  Remember when wearing a full white slip was a must do thing?

Nobody wore one better than Liz in  Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.  I haven't worn one in decades.  A half slip occasionally, but not a full one. If a dress or skirt was heavy and not a see through thing, I didn't wear any slip.  Ladies, did you keep your slip?

I hear my dryer shut off. Time to go.  Do you have a random thought rolling around in your head too? If so, what is it?

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

1970's Variety Shows

Back when I was a young woman ( had to change that from teen once I looked it up because the song I liked was from 1972), I have warm memories of watching variety shows, in the evening,  with my mother.    I didn't leave home until I got married (for the first time - which was in '72 as well, I think.  I really have wiped that memory out.)  

We watched Tom Jones wiggle and gyrate those hips and Mac Davis crooned.Wikipedia says his  show ran from 1974-1976 so this was during the chaos that was my first marriage. Believe me, I needed quiet time with Mom.

 Tom is still around but Mac pretty much drifted away.  Terry and I saw Tom Jones in Las Vegas in the early 90s and he was still doing the same thing.  There is just something wrong with a middle aged man doing hip thrusts!

Mac, I would say, was more successful as a song writer than a performer.  He wrote, Elvis's  In The Ghetto, A Little Less Conversation, Memories, and Don't Cry Daddy.    He wrote for many other artists as well. 

On stage, Mac was low key and easy to watch.  You wonder what makes some artists continue on and others fade away.  Maybe he wanted to retire.  I, for one, missed him.

This is still a great oldie for a sing along.  After listening to the lyrics all these years later,  I think, you dog you!  Funny how life experiences influence your opinions  on past events.

I do remember "the scandal" when his second wife Sarah left him for Glen Campbell.  Mac, according to Wikipedia,  was born in 1942.  He met Sarah after his divorce from his first wife when she, at 16, and living in his apartment building with her mother.  They were married in 1971 when she was 18, until 1976 when she traded him in for Glen.    That would have made him about 29 and her 18....  but 16 when they met.  Oh, Good Grief! 

Is there a singer or an actor that is no longer active that you miss?  Someone that faded away, rather than died. 

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Catch Up Time

Wow!  I had a migraine for 2 days, Monday and Tuesday, so I feel like I've lost a least one of those days.  I had errands to do to get ready for my trip to Tampa, leaving next Friday morning.  I got my hair trimmed, went to the bank to get money, had to get some new underwear, important stuff.  I'm only going to be gone for 4 days.  You'd think that wouldn't take much planning.

I did come across a couple of great tables to refinish in my garage saling on Saturday.  I've started sanding them.  I'll post before and after pics when I get finished with those.  I have been reading a lot of Repurposing and Refinishing blogs so I am inspired now.  We'll see how long that lasts.  When we sold our house and moved here, Terry sold all of his woodworking equipment too.  So, all I have are the basics to work with.  Plus, living in a condo, there is no room for extras.  That's probably a good thing.

I will share a funny thing though.   On Saturday as Terry and I were driving around Garage Saling, an old song came on the radio.  It was Vince Gill's " Look At Us"  about a couple that have weathered the storms and the years together. So I  said"  That's a good song for us isn't it?"    Terry paused, and answered, " Any time your life can be a country song, it's not a good thing."  

In our 30 years together, we have been through some stuff, I can tell ya, but that was funny.  I think laughter has been responsible for getting us through a lot of it too.

All of you that have been through the years and the stuff together know what I mean.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Garage Sale Finds

I have been meaning to share my great garage sale finds from 2 Saturdays ago.  On Saturday mornings Terry and I check to see if there are any sales in our area, that look interesting, so we go armed with a list of addresses and with Ginny (our Garmin is a girl).  After the garage sales we go to the flea market and see what goodies we can find there.  Last week was a book week.  I came home with a "green" grocery bag full.

Most weekends we don't get much of a score but 2 weeks ago we hit the jackpot on art.

This one is going over my bed. It's pretty heavy so it needs some strong support behind it.   It is 32' x 36'.  I got it for $40.00  

This is a water color of Bud and Mary's Marina on Islamorada, one of the Florida keys.  No, I've never been there (to that island... I have been to Key West on a cruise) but now I have a reason to go.  Nothing like buying souvenirs before you go.   It is 19" x 21"  and was $2.00

Lighthouse at Lookout Point, North Carolina is not to far from where I live.  It's a watercolor that I got for $1.00.   It's about 10" x 12". The watercolors still have gallery stickers on the back of them.

The last one here was a signed and numbered print for $2.00.  I don't really have a room that a barn would fit in, but Terry liked it  so maybe we can find a home for it somewhere.  He had a hard time saying "no" for $2.00.  

That's a hard Saturday to top but you just never know where you'll find another treasure.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Music Nostalgia

I have been noticing old songs from my younger years are appearing in more and more venues and I must say, it does warm my heart.

On "So You Think You Can Dance" this was one of the songs a dancer used as music an audition .

It was a good fit for a lyrical number.    "I'd Rather Go Blind"   was from the year I graduated from high school.  I don't remember it from that time.  It made it to number 14 on the U.K. charts when it was sang by a little known group called Chicken Shack featuring Christine Perfect who became Christine McVie in Fleetwood Mac. but I couldn't find where it did much here in the states.  I don't know why.  It's a good song.

My favorite (maybe second favorite after Sir Paul) British rocker recorded it in 1973 and I have read that Miss Etta liked his version.  I'll let you decide.  I like both of them for different reasons.  I have the original by Etta on my MP3 player but being a Rod fan, I have to say that rocker boy wore it well.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

A Couple of Things That Made Me Think

All over the news this weekend was the video of the 80 year old lady skydiving.  She had slipped out of her harness and was hanging butt end first for 90% of the trip down.  I saw her interviewed and she sounded strong and determined.  God bless her and her skydiving pro that held her.  I'm sure he needed a stiff drink when he touched down. 

I'm not a good flyer.  I don't like little planes so even getting up there would do me in.  Then to jump out.  She did say, that while it looked like she was hanging on and may have changed her mind, that was not the case.  She's my hero.  I hope I have kind of bravery at 80. 

I'm meeting my Michigan sister in Tampa the middle of  June.  I have to fly the first leg on a small  commuter plane  and then take the big plane on into Tampa.  Then, reverse it coming back home.  As much as I do not like flying, I like traveling more.  So I suck it up and "just do it".

The other item in the news was the guy that has 30 children with 11 difference women.

  The reports I have seen have stated he has anywhere from 20, possibly 21 children... up to 30.  I think the low end is what has been proven. Some may be waiting for an "official" status.  I've heard he was 29 and 30 years old.  Taking it down to the bare bones, all agree he has any more children than his minimum wage job can support.    

At first glance my reaction was this man is a menace to society and if there was a reason for forced sterilization, this is it.   But then, I thought, what about these mothers?  Women need to bare the total responsibility for birth control because there are men like this out there.  Maybe not with 30 children, but for a lot of them, there is  child support not being paid to a mom raising that child alone. 

Now if these women are intentionally getting pregnant and having children in order to get government money, oh, lordy, don't get me started on that.

I still think he is disgusting.   I think the people of Tennessee will gladly pay for his vasectomy rather than pay for anymore children.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Movie Time

I have been seeing previews lately, on TV, for the Hatfields and McCoys  on The History channel, beginning Memorial Day evening, and airing for 3 nights. It stars Kevin Costner.  Did not intend to do a commercial for them but there is the scoop.

Of course I'll watch.  I love history and I appreciate Kevin Costner.  He's had a few dud movies for sure.  Those I won't name because I've had a couple of dud jobs myself.  No need to call attention to them.

His big hits are memorable for sure.  Dances with Wolves, Bull Durham and The Bodyguard just to name a couple. The Bodyguard is not cinematic brilliance, but it was a box office winner and just a good chick flick so I'm fine with that.

One of my all time favorites though, made it's debut in 1987, right after he had done The Untouchables.   I somehow have been going back to the 80's movies. Evidently, it's a good decade for movies that got my attention.

This was No Way Out with Sean Young... and to use quote from Sharon Osbourne that she applied to someone else (and I would love to take credit for thinking of it, but I didn't)  Sean Young in later years is as crazy as a box of frogs. But...., in this, she was good.

Maybe you saw it years ago and forgot it.  I did.  Now I'm on the hunt.  It's worth watching again.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

This and That

I am working my way through the blue funk..lack of creativity, blogging doldrums I am experiencing.  I keep thinking I'll just stop posting but then I find myself going back to read your posts and see what's going on with my blog friends. 

Today I had a couple of thoughts.

1.  When you are at a restaurant, do you allow your spouse/ other.... to eat things off your plate?   Let me remind you that Terry and I have been married for 30 years.    He is a much faster eater than I am.  So... he would then start reaching for the fries on my plate, for instance.  I learned we don't share one dish a plate of nachos.  He'd eat 3/4 of them before I I knew what was happening.   The final straw was after we had been married for at least 15 years ... and I'm thinking it was probably longer,  that we had gone to Dairy Queen with our daughters to get a Blizzard.  I get one Blizzard a summer.  One... that's my splurge...  I was over 40 before I had ever ordered a Banana Split anywhere, because it seemed too indulgent.  ( Me and my issues).  So I was taking my time with my Turtle Blizzard and he had finished his order.  I saw that spoon headed toward my Blizzard and lost it!    Our girls still remember Mom's  great Blizzard  melt down.   So now, I'll tell him what he can have...when I'm done or if I don't want them.  If we split a plate, I'll remove what I want first.    So am I the only one ? 

I had a couple of reminders of days gone by like.....

1.  The classified "Want Ads" were divided into Male and Female Help Wanted.  This was the late 60s and early 70s that I can remember.

2.  Olive loaf...  I hated olive loaf and was not thrilled when my mother brought that home instead of plain bologna.  Also Braunschweiger( liverwurst mystery meat - to me) even beat olive loaf as dreaded lunch time sandwiches.

Google images

3.  The 70s were big into Fondue, but I can say I have never done that.  I missed that fad somehow.  Daughter #2 has a fondue pot and it has been revived for a new century.  Now there's a Christmas idea.  We are always looking for easy things to do.  That would be fun for the Grandsons too.  So, did you fondue? 

I had to pick the orange one.  It was the 70s and this is a hint of my kitchen back then.

Daughter # 2 cleaning ...with her baby.

My counter tops were orange with those dark brown cupboards.  Add that to brown shag carpet, those avocado appliances and that floor and  you have regret.... in the 80s.  That taught me to pick neutral! 

Today in my rambling, I've decided fondue might be fun and I still do not like liverwurst!

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Random Thoughts

I've had a lot of Random Thoughts lately and here are some more. 

It's 90 here today.  I heard from one of my Michigan daughters that it is supposed to be 90 there too.  That's crazy for them this early.  Summertime brings memories of  past events and looking forward to new ones.  This song, for some reason feels like summer to me.

Dobie Gray died December 6, 2011.  How did I miss that?    His 1973  hit "Drift Away" is one of my all time favorites.  I do like Detroit's  Uncle Kracker 2004 version, but my heart is with Dobie on this one.

I tried to find what month it came out, but all I could find were charts of the hits of 1973.  To me, it feels like the dog days of summer.

How about the case on the news now of the New Jersey tanarexic Mom taking her daughter into a tanning booth, where she sustained burns. 

This photo was a booking shot, (I don't know why) taken April 4th.  This is just now May.... how do you get that dark in a month?  I used to go to the tanner.   I do not know how you can get that dark that fast.  I didn't know you could get that dark period. Plus, do you have to take your teeth out for a mug shot?  Serious question.  I don't know.... There is so much wrong here.
 In my humble opinion.

Now, a question I have had great discussions about, at different places I've worked.  So, now I'll ask you.

  Can you and your husband/wife/significant other..... share the bathroom at the same time?

Personally, we do not.  There have been times when the home we have lived in,  or the hotel we have stayed in, only has one bathroom.  He will not come pee in there when I am putting on makeup, etc, and I will not join him if he is in there.  I had a girlfriend that would sit on the edge of the tub while her husband was sitting on the toilet and carry on a conversation.  Seriously.  No......I don't care that he was there while I was birthing the some things you do not need to share.

I have learned we are in the minority.  Most couples to share bathroom time.

Monday, April 30, 2012

First Count to 10

I had an "incident" that just got my underwear in a bunch!  Again!

I've mentioned that we have lived in a condo community for three years now.  The first spring, skip a year and then this spring... just last week, maintenance hires a service to power wash all the buildings.  I remembered from the last time that due to the mold down here in the south, that water contains bleach.  Of course these men swore up and down to me that it wouldn't hurt my plants.  Wrong......

Now go back with me about 5 years ago...we lived in our house in Michigan that had a back deck with a planter at one end.  I had tried to grow Moonflowers up a trellis for two or three years to no avail.  Morning glories would grow, but not the Moonflowers...(basically the same thing but they only bloom in white and bloom at night)  Add to this equation that Terry is a golfer.... (important information to know a little later)  

I had finally gotten those Moonflowers to grow about 3 feet up that trellis when, one day, I noticed a bucket of water sitting on the deck.  I thought it was rain water and poured it on the Moonflowers.  Should be good for them shouldn't it?   No.....   within 2 days those things were brown, shriveled and dieing. I went to work just ranting about Terry bleaching his balls and leaving the water sitting so that was what I had poured on my plants.    Darn him and his bleached balls!

So this year I thought I would try the Moonflowers again.  The seeds are about as big as a pea so I soaked them overnight and planted them and threw in some red Morning Glories in hopes of a red and white blooming trellis.  The Moonflowers grew to be about 4 inches tall.  I was thrilled. 

So now comes power wash day. They scrubbed sidewalks and the buildings.

  I carried my and planters baskets away from the porch.   I was ready......but I forgot my poor things that were planted in the ground.  Of course the water would run off  and would spray over them.  The cannas are turning brown and the little plants by the planter are almost all gone.   

My poor geranium was about 10 feet from the porch but I believe it got the blow back from the mist.

I keep pulling off the dead leaves.  I 'm hoping it will recover but I have my doubts.

Excuse me while I  pout.  Enough with the whine. Bring on the wine.

Friday, April 27, 2012

The "Dirty Dancing" Catskills Resort Burns

Oh, Baby, tell me it isn't so.... 

I'm sure most of you caught that little nugget of heartache on the news.

MSNBC photo of what had originally been "The Brown Resort" in the Catskills, that the resort in which Dirty Dancing was based.  (It was actually filmed in Virginia - Hollywood magic at work there)   I feel a bit nostolgic about a place that never existed with people that were pretend.  I read once that Margaret Mitchell was repeated asked "What happened next with Scarlett and Rhett?"  She would say "I don't know."  and was tired of being asked.  We readers and viewers get emotionally attached. Well, I do at least.   So, my heart aches a little for Baby and Johnny and the place where it all began.   

I wore those cut off jeans all during the mid to late 1960's. 

There might have been a boy on the other end of that phone line, but I'm sure he was no "Johnny". Big sigh.......

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Random Rants

OK, it's been a few days since I posted my thoughts on the Secret Service scandal but I've heard another take on this that is so bad I have to share.  Maybe you heard it too.  I swear my nine( soon to be 10 ) and 11 year old grandsons come up with far more believable stories to rescue their butts when they get in trouble.

I did get a Fox News update in my email that these men have lost their Top Secret Clearance status.  My husband has that clearance in order to do his job at the Marine Air Base.  It is no small thing.  Your entire life and family background is checked to get it.  So, I say "Good" and what they did, as representatives of my country is an embarrassemnt.

But the thing that I thought was pitiful was that some are claiming they never slept with these "ladies" because by the time they got to the hotel these guys were so drunk they had passed out.  Okay then..... silly me.  No!  You do not receive a "Get Out of Jail" card because you were too drunk to go through with your intentions.   If my teenager came home with that story, I don't think they would have been less grounded because they were too drunk. 

Living here in North Carolina even our local news is covering the John Edwards trial.  Politicians...what can ya do?  I do believe the truth lies closer to Andrew Young than towards John Edwards.  From interviews and in reading Mr. Young's book, The Politician,  John promised to take care him if he "went along" with the plan.  Basically, it's all slight of hand, razzle dazzle, I believe. 

Here we are in the midst of another election year.  I voted as soon as I could at 21 and have voted in every National election since  Am I disheartened? Sure but I feel it is my duty to vote.  On my shoulder, though, is stting a little imp that sings in my ear:

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Movie Time

I was rummaging through Youtube yesterday while looking for Lionel Rickie songs and came across one that reminded me of a movie which did lead me down another path altogether.

In the early 1980s Debra Winger scored big in two movies.  In 1980 she danced her way into John Travolta's heart in Urban Cowboy.

I loved the music from this movie, especially Mickey Gilley's "Stand By Me."   I tried watching it a few years ago and realized that John's character was pretty much a hot mess in that movie.  At the time, there were mechanical bulls in some bars, but, no, I didn't ride any.  Now I wish I would have been more adventuresome and had given it a try. The music holds up well though.

The other movie where she won the guy was "An Officer and a Gentleman" with Richard Gere. Holy Smoly.... Richard Gere still melts my girly heart.  For instance "Nights in Rodanthe" with Diane Lane,  is a great chick flick

Richard was the first "Naval Aviator" that stole our hearts.  It wasn't until 1986 that Tom Cruise's Top Gun captured that spot and, as of yet, he still has the title.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Random Thoughts

For the last few weeks I've had a big writer's block.   I'm usually inspried by current events, pop culture or reminences of times gone by. Finally a couple of things caught my attention and probably caught yours too.

The President's Sercret Servie getting caught soliciting prositiutes in Columbia.  Prostitution is not illegal in Columbia so they weren't breaking any federal laws there.  What their wives think is a horse of another color, to quote the Wizard of Oz.   Eleven men..... They only got "caught" because one lone guy refused to pay.  Seriously?  You are in a third world country. How much is the going rate for a hooker in Columbia?   Morality and marraige vows aside... you know the other ten a mad as hell.    This was just all kinds of stupid.  I just saw on Jane Velez- Mitchell that the number could be 21 prostitutes for 19 men.  11 Secret Service and  the rest  military.  Good Grief!

Also, on that trip, we saw photos of Hilary Clinton dancing and drinking beer.  Ooooo... scandal.  I will say I am not a Hilary fan, but good grief....the work day was over.  After a hard day at work, I'd have a beer too.  (actually, I'd have wine or a gin and tonic.)  If this were Eric Holder or Leon Panetta, would they have been front page news over a beer?  hmmmmm

On to my favorite topic today.   I watched the ACM (Academy of Country Music) Special with Lionel Richie.  Oh, my, my 1980's self loves his music.   We have "Chick Movies" and I now proclaim Lionel the King of Chick Music.  ( Although I did hear once that at the sound of a Johnny Mathis song, women's bras unclasped themselves!)   I was a big fan of The Commadores back in the 70's when they did "Still", Easy, like a Sunday Morning..." and of course, "Brick House".

I saw an interivew with Lionel ( we are first name friends evidently) where he said that men come up to him and say "My wife/girlfriend just loves you.  I don't understand it."  Lionel told him to buy his album, go home and learn the lyrics to all the songs and then repeat them back to his significant other.  He'll soon understand.    So true.   There is not a woman alive that does not want to hear her man tell her how much she means to him.... like this.


      by Lionel Richie

Lady, I'm your knight in shining armor and I love you
You have made me what I am and I'm yours
My love, there's so many ways I want to say I love you
Let me hold you in my arms forever more
You have gone and made me such a fool
I'm so lost in your love
And oh, we belong together
Won't you believe in my song?
Lady, for so many years I thought I'd never find you
You have come into my life and, made me whole
Forever let me wake to see you each and every morning
Let me hear you whisper softly in my ear
In my eyes I see no one else but you
There's no other love like our love
Oh yes, I'll always want you near me
I've waited for you for so long
Oh, Lady, your love's the only love I need
And beside me is where I want you to be
'cause,'cos, my love, my love, there's somethin' I want you to know
You're the love of my life, of my life, you're my lady
You're my lady.

Lionel, during his Commadores days, wrote this song for Kenny Rogers and he does do it well, but, for me, Lionel does it better.

Monday, March 26, 2012

It Takes Me Back

I think the two most powerful things to instantly take us on our own time travel experience is smell and music.  IF only for the spark of a nanosecond, I am transported to another time in another place. 

I connect 3 foods with my mother.  Liver & onions, fried chicken livers, and salmon patties, all cooked in a black cast iron skillet.   I do not like any of them, but she did.  If I even see them on a menu, I think, "Mom".  The memory of my father is stirring his instant coffee in a green "Fire King" mug and then crumbling leftover cornbread (from that same cast iron skillet) into a glass and pouring milk over it, to eat with a spoon.  I'm sure there was some fired Bologna in there somewhere too.   The only thing I made for my family was the cornbread but we never poured milk on it.

The smell of a high school gym takes me back to gym classes in those awful one piece blue,  bloomer things we had to wear.  Every Monday morning I was practicing the acquired skill of ironing mine on a towel, on the floor,of my bedroom, because I had waited to the last minute and would get a demerit if it was wrinkled. 

Remember, I'm the girly girl that didn't want to sweat.  It just ruined your whole "ensemble" to have sweaty hair and smudged eyeliner if you had gym first or second hour.  Needless to say, I was not a high achiever in gym class.  The only thing I did at all well was tumbling because I had had dance lessons as a child so I could point my toes and had follow through in my arms and hands.  (Think gymnasts and then don't think of anything that was difficult... only the " ta da"  at the end". )  I could "Ta Da" with the best of them!!

That gym also held Pep Rallies every Friday afternoon before football and basketball games.   How many cheerleaders did routines to this?

I know it is barely Spring but, with all of these high temps lately,  my body clock is saying it's Summertime.

There is nothing that takes me to a summertime/vacation frame of mind faster than the smell of coconut oil and fruit.  It's in Bath & Body spray mist colognes with summer names like Aruba Coconut, Exotic Coconut  and Caribbean Escape .  It smells like suntan and tanner lotion and the beach to me.  The smell of chlorine, when I pour it in the washing machine, smells like swimming pools to me. Instant summer moment.

Back in my teen years, I tried that awful...awful... one more time...awful Coppertone instant tan lotion that turned your skin orange and between your fingers rust!

I've mentioned before that I wore "Ambush" as a young teen... I am curious as to how I would like it now.  I'm not even sure I wore because I liked it or just because it was the "in " thing at the time.   I have worn Estee Lauder's "Beautiful"  for about 25 years.  I still like it and my girls know that is their "Mom" thing.  Daughter # 1 wore "Red" in high school.  The other two didn't have a favorite.

The sound I like most, that is good for my stressed out soul, is the sound of steel drums from the Caribbean.  They put me on a white sandy beach with pretty turquoise water immediately.

What transports you?

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

What's Goin' On?

I have been stunned by two events that are in the news right now.  These are serious subjects and I can't believe how little we have learned to get to this point.

The first was the American soldier gunning down 16 people, 9 of which were children  (The others were women) a couple of weeks ago, in Afghanistan.  This man served 3 tours in Iraq; had suffered a head injury and lost part of one foot.  He had been promised he would not be deployed again.  He was.  He had spent some time drinking with fellow soldiers before he walked out of camp, fully armed.  Alcohol is illegal in Muslim countries.  Why was it there?  I'm smart enough to know that anything banned is black marketed as soon as you can snap your fingers.... and we've been  there for  a decade now.  So, I'm not really surprised it's there. 

I don't doubt he shouldn't have been deployed.  This is a very troubled individual for sure.  Life, as he knew it, is over.  It is also over for his family.   It absolutely destroyed many Afghan families. 

This followed the burning of many Korans in Bagram Air Base a few weeks before.  I believe our soldiers did not realize what the books were.    This is what I choose to believe.  Maybe I am naive.  That started riots in the streets and attacks on our forces, putting them in more danger than usual.

Now this.    Our troops have been ordered out of the cities (humble as they are) and back to the bases.  I say.... get out.   The time has come to bring our men and women home.

I can't believe we are in the same position we were in, during the 1970s when Marvin sang this song.

The other news story that has me hanging my head. is the down right murder of  17 year old Trayvon Martin by "Neighborhood Watch"  member George Zimmerman.    Zimmerman was told by the 911 operator to stop pursuing the teen.  He did not.  Trayvon was carrying a can of iced tea and a bag of Skittles.  Zimmerman was carry a revolver and shot the defenseless teen.  The boy can be heard crying for help on the 911 tape before you then hear the sound of a shot being fired.  It rips out my heart.  I cannot even begin to comprehend how his parents feel.

Leave it Marvin Gaye to ask the question we all are wondering. 

 ( I'm also wondering about the guy in that green suit behind Marvin.  Some things from the 70s should not come back in style!)

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Glory Days

I've posted that when Terry and I travel we take along CD's of "Road Music".  For a few years we subscribed to satellite radio but discovered we like our own choices better. So, on our Charlotte trip, we were listening to a "Greatest Hits of Bruce Springstein" and his song "Glory Days" played.

Glory Days

I had a friend was a big baseball player
back in high school
He could throw that speedball by you
Make you look like a fool boy
Saw him the other night at this roadside bar
I was walking in, he was walking out
We went back inside sat down had a few drinks
but all he kept talking about was

Glory days well they'll pass you by
Glory days in the wink of a young girl's eye
Glory days, glory days

Well there's a girl that lives up the block
back in school she could turn all the boy's heads
Sometimes on a Friday I'll stop by
and have a few drinks after she put her kids to bed
Her and her husband Bobby well they split up
I guess it's two years gone by now
We just sit around talking about the old times,
she says when she feels like crying
she starts laughing thinking about


My old man worked 20 years on the line
and they let him go
Now everywhere he goes out looking for work
they just tell him that he's too old
I was 9 nine years old and he was working at the
Metuchen Ford plant assembly line
Now he just sits on a stool down at the Legion hall
but I can tell what's on his mind

Glory days yeah goin back
Glory days aw he ain't never had
Glory days, glory days

Now I think I'm going down to the well tonight
and I'm going to drink till I get my fill
And I hope when I get old I don't sit around thinking about it
but I probably will
Yeah, just sitting back trying to recapture
a little of the glory of, well time slips away
and leaves you with nothing mister but
boring stories of glory days

The third verse isn't sung on this 1985 video, but resonates so much now because of all the closed automobile factories.

We've all know the sports jock that lived his best days in High School.  The one voted "most likely...." but it didn't happen for him.  We've seen the woman still wearing the same hair style she had at 17, but now she's 35, or 45 or 55.   

It got me thinking about my own glory days.   Do I count High School as one of them?  Sure!  Dates on Saturday nights...Football games and dances... Mom bought my clothes and  paid my bills. ....Glory Days.

Looking at the road I traveled, I would say my first marriage was not the best use of my time... accept I came out the winner in that too, because I walked away with a precious little girl.  

Terry played football in high school and college.  He was a marathon runner when we met.....Glory Days

After we  were married, he gave that up.  Too time consuming and we had our younger girls.  I distinctly remember knowing those were "the good ole days".   Three daughters to share memories.  Sippy cups and security blankets.  Soccer and basketball games. Family dinners and vacations,   School clothes shopping, and prom dress hunting.  Senior pictures and college graduation.    Glory Days.........

Now that my mother has been gone for 5 1/2 years, and I have moved 5 states away, I long for those family get togethers.  The many holidays, summer cookouts, graduation open houses, Birthday celebrations.  Any excuse and all excuses just to get together to spend time with one another.
  Glory Days....

When I took my break from blogging, my sister ( YFS - Your Favorite Sister)  thought I needed to plan a trip.  I needed to do something to shake the doldrums and cobwebs out of my brain.  So we did. 

 My Mother and Father both only had one brother each. Both have passed away.    They, in turn, have one child each. (Actually my Mother's brother has another one when he was in the Air Force, stationed in Scotland, but we have never met her.)  After not seeing either girl for decades ( they both live in other states) my sister tracked them down this winter.  Thank you Facebook. 

So, in June, my sister and I are meeting in Tampa to spend a few days with one of the cousins and her family.  I believe she is about 15 years younger than us.  She is married and has a young daughter, about 8 I think.  See, I really do need to know her better.  We will spend a couple of days at a hotel on the beach with her and her Mom, that we both adored, for "girl time", as well as at her house.  ( The Uncle and Aunt divorced... long story) I have not seen the Mom since I was about 20 years old.  After that, my Uncle brought our cousin to Michigan for a visit when I was about 40... She was a teen.

My sister is planning on inviting my father's niece, the other cousin, up to Michigan from her home in Missouri, sometime this summer too.  She really wants to hear the "growing up" stories about her father (who passed away when she was a teen)  from my father..his brother.   I  would like to be there for that too.  We'll see how that works out.

This is a whole new experience.  Connecting with long lost relatives and vacationing with my sister.  You know what this sounds like to me?  Yep, you got it.

Glory Days

What "Glory Days " do you most cherish?

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Trip Home From Charlotte

The theater where we saw Jersey Boys is downtown Charlotte.  Terry had told me to check out the events to see what else I wanted to do but I never did.  I didn't have any idea where to begin, never having been there before. Now I wished I had just Googled the city for Events because, as we drove around looking for parking, we passed a museum that was having an exhibit of mummies from around the world. Anyone that knows or reads me here, knows I will watched the National Geographic Station or the History Channel dig up just about anything.  Of course, that dear man had to remind me he had suggested I look. darn!!  I hate when he's right.

After the play, we walked out to these street jazz musicians.  I have seen street musicians in a lot of big cities, but never with the bass horns these guys had.  They were awesome.

Terry and I are fans of The Food Network's "Diners Drive-Ins and Dives".    This is the first time we've been on the road that had one of  the eateries close to us.  In Charlotte, there are 2 within one block.  We chose " DISH"  because Terry had read that the other one had changed hands, so we wanted to stick with an original.  We are not adventurous eaters.  We stick to the chains when we are traveling, like Ruby Tuesdays or Applebees. Something along that order.  We are not ones to venture into the Mom and Pop restaurants like the program show cases.

Having said that, when I saw the DISH building, I was a little suspect.  Walking in, I wondered if  we should stay.  I knew which part of the  Triple D I had entered.

From the photo it looks cute and homey. me it was more worn out and I was a little worried about cleanliness.  There is a second room behind where we sat, so it is bigger than it looks from this shot.

The program that aired 2years ago,  showed host,  Guy Fieri,  watching the cook make their "famous" chicken and dumplings, so, that's what I ordered.  I have to say here, though, having southern grandmothers that knew how to make that dish, and I make it like they did, this girl knows her dumplings.  (Terry did have the meatloaf which I thought was good.  It was pretty spicy hot, which I liked.)

So, here's my chicken and dumplings.

It is difficult to see from this photo, but there wasn't any broth or gravy.  It had the consistency of mashed potatoes with some chicken mixed in along with a few small pieces of dumplings.  I think I got the end of the batch or something.  The other side dish was mashed potatoes with gravy.    I ate about half of it. Plus, it wasn't hot, just warm.   I was pretty disappointed, but if given the opportunity, I'd try another Diner, but I wouldn't try another Dive, that's for sure. 

In all fairness to them, by the time we left, the place was packed, so I admit, it must be just me that was not impressed. 

Charlotte is about a 6 hour drive from us so, while there is a lot to do, I wonder how often we will make that trip.  It's not something I would do on a whim. It has to include an overnight stay so that's something to consider too.   At any rate, this trip was a success.


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