.....and other random stuff......

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Cheap Entertainment

We used to go for car rides a lot when I was a kid. I guess it was cheap entertainment for our parents.
Sunday drives were the best.
One of our favorite Sunday drives consisted of cruising the neighborhood to watch a particular neighbor tend to his lawn.
He used to work on his lawn in his stocking feet. No shoes, no sandals just his black knee-hi socks (with garters!) Bermuda shorts and golf shirt.
He claimed it was so he wouldn’t ‘bruise’ the blades of grass.
But then he would take a bamboo stick, which he had shredded at one end, and BEAT the lawn!
He would walk methodically back and forth in a pattern across his front yard beating the lawn.
I don’t know why we found it so funny. (Well, okay, yes I do. LOL)
We would drive past his house trying to keep a straight face until we were several houses away and out of earshot, then we would all burst out laughing.
Like I said, cheap entertainment! 

(Looking back on it now, I’m wondering what kind of example this was for my parents to set for us!)

Monday, January 30, 2012

Let’s Play a Game

Ann at StudioHyde said she likes the silly nonsensical words that one has to type in order to leave a comment on blogs too. 
At one point she had the idea to compile them into a book and to come up with definitions for them. 
A Blog Comment Word Dictionary, if you will.
Brilliant Ann!
So let’s play.

Here’s the word:  apoging

Now your job (should you decide to accept it) is to come up with a definition for it. And leave it in the comment section.
No rules, no guidelines, just pure silliness and imagination!
(Also no reward or prize.  Just the satisfaction of knowing you did a good job, as my parents used to say!)
Let’s see how long we can ‘pass it around’!

Sunday, January 29, 2012

The Motel Chronicles, con’t

It’s Friday night, the first night of our week’s vacation.
We’re relaxing in the living room discussing what to do. We see a commercial advertising cut rate flights to California and discount car rentals.
Half an hour later we’re booked and on our way.

We fly into San Francisco and spend a few days exploring the northern regions of California. Every afternoon we find a pay phone and call the 800 number for motel reservations.
No problems.
I even make friends with the 800 operator!

After San Francisco we drive down to LA.

(FYI: if you ever decide to drive the Pacific Coast Highway, don’t do it heading south. That puts you on the OUTSIDE lane. And there are places where the pavement has crumbled away leaving no shoulder or even the white line designating where the shoulder USED to be! California doesn’t seem to believe in guard rails, and it’s a LOOOOONG way down to the ocean! Just sayin’.)

We don’t really like LA so we head to Palm Springs.
When we arrive we call ‘Jim’ to have him book us a room.
 “Are you kidding?” he says. “There’s not a room for a three hundred mile radius of Palm Springs because of the International Date Festival!”

The what?


Who knew there was a whole festival celebrating the DATE!?

(Preakness flashback!)

Jim was right. Every motel we stop at is booked.
At 3 AM we come upon The Bates Motel.
I kid you not!
BATES! (Someone had a very twisted sense of humor!)
But it’s late and we’re exhausted and they have a vacancy, so we get a room.
We didn’t sleep a wink!
We lay in bed staring at the ceiling waiting for Norman to show up dressed as mother!
The good news is he didn’t!
As the sun was rising we were dressed and gone!
We didn’t even ‘check out’! Just left the key in the room!

Do you notice a pattern developing here? LOL

Saturday, January 28, 2012

The Red Corvette

Husband and I worked for the same company. 
A very large company.
Different departments, but we still ran into one another and had many, many mutual co-workers who knew we were married.
One year for Christmas I bought him a red Corvette.
(It’s a long and boring story so I won’t go into it, but the end result was I bought the car and gave it to him.)
The story spread like wildfire through the company. And I got a great reputation for being the wife who bought her husband a bright shiny red Corvette!
Everyone thought I was marvelous!
(The part I never told anyone was--- right after I gave Husband the keys to the car I also handed him the payment book for the loan!)

No need to shatter my image, right? LOL

Friday, January 27, 2012

Yummy Goodness

Not that I want to rub it in to all of you living in northern climates (sorry!)
But this has become our favorite dessert. I requested it instead of birthday cake this year!

Fruit Salad Recipe

Cut into bite sized pieces (well, except for the blueberries) place in large bowl, mix well.
Pile high into smaller bowl and consume with great enthusiasm! (I was going to say consume with relish but I thought it might make for misunderstandings! LOL)
When bowl is empty, lament woefully and lick the juices from the bottom of your bowl like an unmannered child!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Great Grandma had a Hatpin

She gave it to my mother when my mother moved to Manhattan.
“For protection.’ said great Grandma.
My mother said it came in very handy on the subway, where she would use it on men who would get just a little too ‘familiar’.
Can you imagine this sinking into your thigh?
(You didn't mess with my mother! LOL)

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

I used to be Feisty

When I was twenty, I got a job as a telephone operator. It was very regimented. VERY. You were timed for EVERYTHING. You had to wait outside the office door until precisely the time your shift started, and ‘plug in’ at exactly the minute you were scheduled for.
If you were late, they ‘wrote it up’ in your permanent record!

One day I knew I was going to be late so I called to ask for time off.
The supervisor said. “No! You’d better get here PDQ!”
I got in my little four cylinder Pinto and flew like the wind to get there on time. (And I’m sure I broke a few traffic laws!)
I was ONE MINUTE late.
The supervisor said she was going to write me up.
I said, “Okay, in that case I’m going down to the cafeteria and have a cup of tea and calm down from rushing to be here on time.”
She looked at me and said, “You can’t do that!”
I said, “Watch me! If you’re going to write me up for being late then I’m going to be good and G—D------ late!”

I wonder what ever happened to that permanent record? LOL

I used to be Feisty.

Now, I’m just too tired, LOL!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

I Don’t Wanna Clean

When Husband and I were both gainfully employed (and the boys were little and we were busy) we treated ourselves to a maid. Once every two weeks Nancy came and cleaned our house better than we did! She was the most amazing young woman.
It was heaven!
Then she moved.
So we hired another maid.
Her name was Ida.
She would come to the house, pick up a dust rag and proceed to lethargically run said duster over bits and pieces of furniture and a few flat surfaces here and there.
The WHOLE time she never stopped talking.
And for most of the time when she talked she stopped working!
Nancy didn’t have a time limit. She worked until the job was done.
Not Ida!
She had a strict time limit whether she was finished or not.
Husband dubbed her ‘Ida Wanna Clean’!
We haven’t had a maid since.
How I miss Nancy (because 'Ida wanna clean' either!)

Monday, January 23, 2012

No Thanks, I Just Had a Baked Apple

My mother was unflappable.
Totally unflappable.
One day as she was walking to work, a man approached  her, opened his raincoat and flashed her.
Without missing a beat she looked him straight in the eye and said, “No thanks, I just had a baked apple!”
It made no sense whatsoever, but it took the flasher by surprise that he wasn’t able to shock her.
She just kept on walking.

It became another oft repeated catch phrase we used for any odd or awkward situation!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Sparks Flew

As a kid I never passed up a dare.
Maybe it was because I was the ‘little sister’ and was always trying to keep up. Or maybe I was trying to prove myself.
Oh, who are we kidding, I did it because I was a jerk and as Bill Cosby says about kids, they’re all brain dead!

I was in seventh grade math class, being bored to death by the teacher. 
The ‘rowdy’ boys decided to fool around. They made a ‘device’ (for lack of a better word) out of a plastic pen and a brass brad. They bent the brad into a shape like a plug and pushed it into the end of the plastic pen and dared me to plug it into the outlet.
I grabbed it and plugged it in.

The sparks were AWESOME! They spewed out of the outlet like a beautiful fireworks display! I mean they SPEWED! Really far!

Admittedly, I might not have thought it through. 

After a moment of total shock and disbelief I thought perhaps I might have misjudged my decision and wanted to unplug the damn thing, so I grabbed the plastic pen and yanked. 
The pen came off leaving the brad in the outlet.

Now, before you worry about me reaching to pull the brad out I’m glad to say I wasn’t THAT brain dead! I knew better than to touch the METAL part.
Besides, after a few more seconds the thing blew the fuse and blacked out the school.

Problem solved.

Or so I thought.

The teacher was so angry with me he actually put me in an empty classroom ‘for my own safety’ until he could calm down enough to deal with me.

I honestly don’t remember what my punishment was but it must have been a doozie!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Killer Tomatoes

Not only is my hearing failing me, now my brain is too!

I was reading the news and came upon this headline: 
“Killer Tornadoes Cause Massive Damage”.
But what my brain read was: 
“Killer Tomatoes Cause Massive Damage”!

And I thought, wait, that can’t be right.

Or can it? LOL

Friday, January 20, 2012

Pink Tools

Men are funny aren’t they?

I worked as a technician at one point in my career. Mostly with men.
I wore a tool belt and had tools.

When I would take a break, I would leave my tool belt on the table.

Every once in a while some of my tools would grow legs and walk away.

It was frustrating because you really did use these tools all day long. And if you ‘lost’ one you had to keep borrowing from someone else until the boss could get you another. (Kind of difficult when you’re twenty feet up a ladder to say, “Hey, can I borrow that?”)

 Husband solved my problem.

One day he came home with a can of neon pink spray paint and painted all my tools pink.

Not one single pink tool ever disappeared!
Not even when they needed to borrow a tool did they ask to use my pink tools!

They worked exactly the same as the non-pink ones but they wouldn’t touch them!

Like I said, men are funny! LOL

Thursday, January 19, 2012

I am Goal Oriented

I am very much goal oriented. I once made 13 stops on my lunch hour and still got back to work on time. (I broke a motor mount in the car doing it, but still.)
I used to be able to write out my grocery list at work, go to the store, shop, pay, drive home, put the stuff away and still have time to make a sandwich before heading back to work, on time.
What I’m saying is, I’m goal oriented.
Left to my own devices with no to-do list or specific goal in mind I wander aimlessly around. Much like the ball in a pin ball machine, bouncing from one place to another.
This is how my day went today:
Got up
Booted up computer
Logged on, checked e-mail
Surfed blogs
Wandered into the kitchen, ate breakfast
Thought about what to make for dinner
Looked into the studio, thought about what I might want to work on….
Wandered back to the computer, wasted more time
Wondered if the mail came
Realized I never took anything out of the freezer for dinner
Re-thought about what to have for dinner
Remembered I never got the mail
Fed the cat
Wandered to my painting table…..stared at paints…walked away
Turned on the TV…..wasted more time
The next thing I know, Husband is home asking “What’s for dinner?”
Ordered pizza
Ate pizza
Watched more TV with Husband
Went to bed
Goals achieved today:  GOT OUT OF BED! LOL

Wednesday, January 18, 2012


Why is it that some blogs catch our attention and compel us to keep reading and others we just stop on for a second or two and continue on our way?
What is it that makes us stick with a blogger, even when sometimes the posts aren’t really about anything?
I find it quite amazing that even though we can’t see one another here, we still make that human connection. Something touches us in each other’s words and we come back time and again.
Thank you for coming back.
Here’s to our continued friendship. I am grateful and honored to call you my friends.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Our ‘Wedding Portrait’

No formal wedding pictures for us! Oh no!
The perfect way to top off your wedding day.
Run into a caricaturist.
When we told him we had just gotten married he drew this and presented it to us as a gift! We had it framed and it hangs in the living room. (People think we're strange! I wonder why? LOL)

Monday, January 16, 2012

The Motel Chronicles, part one

Husband and I lived together for several years before I finally came to the conclusion that it might actually work out. (I didn’t have the best track record when it came to relationships!)

One spring day I said to him, 
“Hey, we don’t have any more vacation time this year but if we get married we get three days off. And with our regular days off it will add up to a whole week! Wanna get married?” 
(Romantic aren’t I!? LOL)

There were other mitigating circumstances too. 
Husband had been married before. I had planned a wedding, seen myself in a gown and veil, and lost an insane amount of money (without actually getting married.)
Also, by that time, my father was in a wheelchair and as lousy as this sounds, I didn’t really feel like being wheeled down the aisle. (Plus I don’t like being the center of attention very much.)

So, off we toddled to Maryland.

We had always been ‘fly by the seat of your pants’ kind of travelers. Never making reservations, just jump in the car and go. 

We arrived at the motel.
No vacancy.


How can a whole Holiday Inn in Towson, Maryland be full in May?

I’ll tell you how….
Preakness week, that’s how!
For those of you who don’t know, Preakness is the second horse race in the Triple Crown. And it's an EVENT! There’s the Kentucky Derby, Preakness, and Belmont. (How I could have forgotten that I'll never know!) 

There wasn’t a hotel/motel room available for miles around. The desk clerk said he could try the motel across the road.

I used to live in Towson. And EVERYONE knew that motel was the welfare motel. 
Where the prostitutes and drug dealers lived.

No thank you, I’ll find something myself!

Several hours later we were checking into the ‘welfare motel’.

Other than the mushrooms growing in the corner of the shower,  the stale smell of cigarettes from all the previous residents and the mattress that sagged in the middle so we ‘rolled’ into each other all night it wasn’t so bad!

How many people can say they stayed at the 'ROACH MOTEL' on their honeymoon!?

(We still laugh about it and actually wouldn't have wanted it to be any other way. Where's the fun in a perfect honeymoon! LOL)

Saturday, January 14, 2012

The Moment I ‘Knew’

We were standing in the living room, having a fight.
Yelling and screaming at each other. Okay, maybe not yelling and screaming. That’s not our style.
But it was definitely a big argument.

Right in the middle, Husband (this was before he became Husband) walks over to me, wraps his arms around me and very quietly says, “I love you. I’m mad as hell at you right now, but I love you very much.”

It stopped me in my tracks!
Took the wind out of my sails, and any other cliché you can think of.

I was dumbfounded!

Other than my parents nobody had ever said anything like that to me before.
It certainly was a great way to end and argument!

I don’t remember what we were fighting about, what was said in the heat of the argument, but I remember those words like it was yesterday.

And THAT was when I realized he was a keeper!

Friday, January 13, 2012

And Then The Mailbox Held This!

Is this not the NICEST thing EVER?
From Jo at Gathering Wild 
Thank you so much Jo! You TOTALLY made my day!
I grin from ear to ear every time I look at it. I love your collages!
(I have trouble expressing how much you guys mean to me without sounding all mushy!)

Thursday, January 12, 2012

High Heels

When Husband worked the evening shift, he would, upon occasion, come home for dinner (euphemistically speaking.)

He would drive the company car, so when he got home he didn’t have his house keys. He would ring the bell.

Our apartment was on the second floor, the back apartment in the last building at the far end of the complex. What I’m saying is NOBODY EVER came to our door uninvited. (We never even saw our neighbors in all the years we lived there! Heard them, yes, but never saw them!)

I had decided on this occasion to meet him at the door wearing high heels and a smile.
Since I was expecting him, when the doorbell rang, I didn’t bother to look through the peephole, I just opened the door.

The look on the UPS man’s face was priceless!

I often wonder how his version of the story goes when he retells it!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Learning to Read

Before I started school I was jealous of my brother.
HE got to go to school!
He knew how to read!
HE got to carry big important looking books!
HE got to have homework! I thought it was all so cool! (What can I say? I was uninformed! LOL)
So on my first day of ‘real’ school I was so excited!
I was going to learn to READ!
The problem was I thought there was some sort of magic wand they waved over your head and ‘poof’ you knew how to read!
No one told me you had to PRACTICE reading! What was all this phonetic stuff?
Where was the magic wand?
I still remember coming home that first day and feeling sooooo disappointed and betrayed! 

Sunday, January 8, 2012


Fresh strawberries in January! Life is good!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Somebody Does Want to Play!

Ya’ know how I was complaining about feeling like nobody wants to play with me when I don’t get any mail?
Well, look what I found in the mailbox yesterday!

A lovely card from Yvonne!!!! (from 'muddle on through')
What a nice surprise!
Thank you Yvonne!
From the bottom of my tickled little heart! 
(Aren't friends the BEST?)

Friday, January 6, 2012


I feel so left out when I don’t get any mail.
Like nobody wants to play with me!
Or I haven’t been chosen for the team!
Even bills and junk mail are okay.
But when the mailbox is totally empty, it’s depressing! 

Thursday, January 5, 2012

The Sketchbook Challenge 2012

A new year and the challenge continues. 
This month’s theme is ‘doodling’.
I have a roll of aluminum embossing foil. (I’ve had it so long I don’t remember why I bought it or what I was going to use it for!)
So I thought I’d try some doodling on it and see if I can’t use it as journal covers.
We’ll see where this goes.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

I’m an Inventor

Really, I am!
I invented a balloon tie-er.

The boys’ birthdays are exactly one week apart.
When they were little we threw an all out, over the top, combined party.
And of course with ANY kind of birthday celebration you have to have a copious number of balloons.

The year I rubbed my fingers raw from tying hundreds of rubber balloons by hand was the year I invented the ‘Tie-er’.
Necessity is the mother of invention. (So are sore fingers!)

It was a simple little device but everyone thought it was pure genius. A friend even suggested that I patent it!

(What I really wanted to invent was a mechanized balloon tie-er but my genius is obviously limited in the ways of mechanics!)

So I guess I’m destined to become a millionaire from this!

 You hold it between your knees and wrap the balloon end around the two spread out pencils. It gives you enough space to tie a knot and the aluminum foil is flexible enough to let you pinch it a bit and slide off the balloon.
(Hey, it worked! And served me well for many a birthday party! LOL)