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4 posts from September 2008

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Planes, Panic, and Long Road Trips

Aviation-SBDSatCoralSea by you.

Man-oh-Man-oh-Man.  I must be crazy.  Yep, I'm crazy alright.  But, it's for a good cause.  Actually, it's for a good friend.  Awww, more than that, I want to get the heck out of here for about 4-5 days and pretend I'm 18 again.  Yeah Man, that's the ticket.  I want to pretend I'm a crazy teenager again - with Alison.  So, on Tuesday, I'm flying to New Mexico (a-riva a-riva - whatever) and that, in and of itself, is going to be the trip from hell. 

Alisonsmiling2.jpg by you.

Then I am crashing at Alison's house, helping her pack up some more (she's been packing for weeks now), and we are driving across this grand country of ours back to North Carolina. 

Alisonsmiling1.jpg by you.

It gives me the willies just thinking about it.  But I am going to jump in the front seat of this roller coaster ride and haul ass down the road with Alison, 2 cats (or is that 3?), 1 Chihuahua, and a Gecko from New Mexico to North Carolina.  I'll probably have the poops before I get on that big-dang Airbus.  I should load up on Xanax and Immodium AD quick.  I am sure I'm going to need it.  I can feel the panic starting to rise up and down my spine already.

ExoticAlison2.jpg by you.

Hey, but I think of it this way - Alison is moving everything - her entire life out here to be close to me.  To us.  To this nutty family of ours.  From Geckos to Baby Grand pianos, it's all comin' and I couldn't be happier.  If you've read this blog of mine, then you may be familiar with Alison.  She's my friend of 34 years.  Our lives have taken us all over this country (more hers than mine) and we've been thru a few men in the process.  (Just a few) Fortunately, I've been married for 16 years to my Big Bear and that ain't changin' anytime soon - or later for that matter.  What Alison needs is a Big Bear of her own.  She has parameters, though, for what will measure up to her standards.

ExoticAlison.jpg by you.

For instance: He has to be tall.  Not too tall, just tall.  As in 5'11" - 6'6".  Somewhere in there.  Then, he has to be between the ages of 43 - 60.  But only if he is a young 60, because she is a young 49.  Let's see...hmmm. 

CapitalDC by you.

Oh, he must be educated.  (No politicians)  No less than a Bachelor's degree and preferably more educated.  He must be successful and have an established career. 

LifeguardYMCA by you.

No cracker-jacks please.  We've seen what surprises are in those boxes and they're not worth it.  In other words, don't go clamoring for her personal assets.  She's not bitin' that game.  Either you treat her like a lady, pay for the damn meal and movie when you go out, and open her door, or don't bother.  None of this "share" crap.  We're old fashioned.  We like to be treated like a lady - and the man pays.  If you don't want a lady, and don't want to pay for the entire meal, Alison ain't for you. 

AlisonandSusan3.jpg by you.

She's not lookin' for a sugar-daddy, either.  She's not even lookin' for a daddy.  But you better have some sugar or forget it.  Too many men out there have thrown salt on a wound that looked a lot like sugar and  she still has a bad taste in her mouth from it.  Want to know what that tastes like?  Just pour a teaspoon of salt into your coffee instead of sugar.  That ought to wake you up real quick.  No fakes allowed.  Go chivvy with someone else.

GilElvgren.jpg by you.

Only Gentleman are going to be permitted to date Alison.  She may be my friend, but I'm keeping her on a short leash.  I love her dammit.  She deserves the best, thank you very much. 

AlisonandRoadster.jpg by you.

Oh, but only when she's ready.  And right now she's not ready for a man to take over. 

Susandriving.jpg by you.

She just may want me to take over the wheel, though, driving home.  That's a scary thought.  She has a lot to do first.  Like get settled in this complex place I call home, and find a job if she wants too, and then find a place of her own to call home - no more than 15 minutes from my house or I'm complainin' to the Realtor.

AlisonandSusan4.jpg by you.

So Tuesday.  Tuesday's the day.  Woooh.  I'm having a hot flash.  Pardon me.  "Air!  I need Air!"  Oh, I guess I'm going to be "Air" born on Tuesday aren't I?  I think I'll take a Xanax for good measure, my camera, of course, to document this incredible trip, and a pillow.  Have to have a pillow in case I want to bury my face in it at 34,000 feet.  I can't have a panic attack.  Nope.  Can't happen.  Can it? 

NeighborsYard4.jpg by you.

I will be so happy to be home!  Uuuuh, that's not my house.  That is definitely not my yard.  Nice home though.

DSC_0013.JPG by you.

Good Lord, I haven't even left yet and I'm already anxious to get home. Talk about a fuddy-duddy.  Excuse me, while I correct that - Fuddy-Duddy.  Queen of FD.  Oh, and this is our garage.  Isn't it pretty?

P1000731.JPG by you.

(By the way, this is Adolf, and he has nothing to do with this post.  But he sure is cute)

This must be another way to describe Schlumpadinka.  I'm one of those too.  Never thought I'd say that, but it's true.  I'm turning into my mother.  Actually, I may already be there.  I think I am my mother.  She's terrified of airplanes and long trips too.  As a matter of fact, she called me yesterday from Florida and told me she wanted to come home and would Alison and I swing by West Palm Beach and pick her up. 

The Enthusiast by David Uhl by you.

"Yeah, sure, Mom!  We'll just stick you on the roof of this PT Cruiser with the multiple pets and 2 crazy women inside.  That ought to be a more enjoyable ride than on an airplane."  Or, think of it this way:  "We've been driving for how many miles when we would get around to picking you up?  Honestly, if you look at us cross-eyed we may have to let you off on the interstate.  So, stay in Florida or take a plane home, but please don't ask me to make room in this Cruiser with an already exhausted bunch."   

Aviation-TheMissouriKid by you.

I think she got the message.  My mother doesn't like animals either.  Including humans.  She prefers peace and quiet, no responsibilities and no one bothering her.  She likes to stay holed up in her bedroom and nap - all the time.  It's her pleasure.  Which begs the question: Why does she want to come home to us anyway? 

Mominchair4 by you.

I mean, yes, she has lived with us for 10 years now, but hasn't she had enough?  It is a mess here all the time.  The laundry is never "done."  The kids are always asking for something.  The dogs bark and run into her.  School books are strung all over the family room most of the time.  The kitchen is a mess.  We're a family of 6 and we're home all the time.  Why on earth would she want to come back here? 

Aviation-Warplanes by you.

I will have to reflect on that for a minute or two.  Maybe three. 

In the meantime, I have a lot of cleaning to do before I leave because it sure won't get done while I am gone.  So I may not have an opportunity to post to this equally crazy blog until next week.  We'll just have to see what happens.   I do things by the seat of my pants anyway.  Why is that not a surprise?

So, I think I will now take my seat off this couch and clean up this house.  Which includes cleaning my carpets and scrubbing my floors, cleaning my bathrooms and changing all sheets which leads to more laundry.   Crap.

Aviation-StarckMad by you.

Please pray for me.  I need angels on Tuesday - Wednesday - Thursday - Friday - Saturday....


Friday, September 12, 2008

Date Night - A Rare Occasion

DSC_0224.jpg by you.

It was time.  We hadn't been out for a fun evening - just Big Bear and me - since I can't remember when.  So, when our neighbor, who is also a singer in a band, invited us to the local country club (we're not members) where he was going to be playing, we jumped at the opportunity.

DSC_0163.jpg by you.

What you need to know about our neighbor, Pat, is that he is one cool cat.  He has a nice lawn too! 

DSC_0165.jpg by you.

Bob and I had no idea he was so good.  I mean - these guys are really great.  They rocked down the house!  The music they played was classic Rock-n-Roll.  Yeah, man.  My kinda music! 

DSC_0173.jpg by you.

See, I told you he was a cool cat.  Now he just needs a black hat and he'll look just like one of the Blues Brothers.

DSC_0179.jpg by you.

These guys rocked the night away.  Of course it was only from 7pm to 10pm, but hey, people have got to get home to their teenagers before they burn down the house.

DSC_0195.jpg by you.

Before I took 2 sips of sweet tea, this menopausal, middle-aged, old fogey crowd was up and dancin' their hineys off.

DSC_0199.jpg by you.

Of course, the night included Janet, Pat's wife, and our lovely neighbor, ripping up the floor.  Nice skirt, Janet.  I'm not sure that skirt would do anything for me, but it sure looks good on you.

DSC_0212.jpg by you.

I mean, if my husband were a singer in a band, you can bet I'd be ripping up somebody's floor and following him to every gig.  And I'd probably be wearing a skirt too.

DSC_0215.jpg by you.

Yeah, baby!  WooHoo!  ARE WE HAVIN' FUN YET PEOPLE?!!!

DSC_0170.jpg by you.

Of course, no date night would be complete unless we tracked down the resident Pink Flamingo.

DSC_0233.jpg by you.

Okay guys, you're just having way too much fun.  I didn't know the dancin' crowd could join the band?  What's up with that anyway?

DSC_0231.jpg by you.

Well my goodness, she's singin' with him too?  She must be buzzed.

DSC_0196.jpg by you.

Actually, maybe it's me who has the buzz.  What was in that tea?  Does that dance floor look crooked to you?

DSC_0240.jpg by you.

Okay, already.  I pulled my big hiney out of the pool chair and I'll do a little jig with all the other old fogey, country club type on the dance floor.

DSC_0244.jpg by you.

She's dancin' - dancin' - dancin' the night away, that girl is dancin' - dancin'...  Oh, sorry, he's singing something from the Beatles I think.  Wrong decade.  Sorry.

DSC_0247.jpg by you.

I look absolutely ridiculous out there.  And to think I used to be so hot at one time. 

DSC_0241.jpg by you.

I mean really hot stuff I was.  I could burn up the floor.  Nope.  Not anymore.  I look like I have a cramp in this picture.

DSC_0255.jpg by you.

Oh my!  I have company!  Big Bear is going to tear up the dance floor with me. 

DSC_0254.jpg by you.

You don't have to say a thing.  I already know.  We look like we're on the verge of a stroke.  What a bunch of nuts we all are pretending to be 20 again.  I mean, who do we think we are anyway?  John Travolta and Olivia Newton John?  Come on!

DSC_0258.jpg by you.

Check out those moves.  Shake it baby. 

DSC_0191.jpg by you.

I must admit, Pat and his band Roc Dox gave us a night to remember.

DSC_0229.jpg by you.

It is definitely time to go home, though.  My feet hurt, my hips are killing me, my pants are starting to fall down from all the jigglin'.  I don't care.  Nothin' that 3 Advil won't cure. 

Can we do this again?

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Road Trip

DSC_0041DirtBag.jpg by you.

Welcome to North Carolina folks.  I had my trusty Nikon D300 in hand the other evening and decided to take pictures out the window of our car just driving down the road to see what I wound up with at the end of the evening.  I'm fly by the seat of my pants like that.   So, if you would like to see the scenes of our 7 mile trek to the Americana Restaurant from Weddington to Matthews, you're in the right place.  (That's South Charlotte for anyone who is not familiar with Charlotte, North Carolina)

DSC_0004.jpg by you.

I like this house.  Reminds me a bit of Tara in Gone with the Wind but not nearly as Charleston Big.  By the way, it was a gray and gloomy early evening when we left home.

DSC_0007.jpg by you.

Nice fleld.  I noticed a few weeds popping up.  Amazing that I was able to get such clear pictures while driving at 40 mph down the road.

RoadTrip.jpg by you.

Nice driveway you got there, dude - whoever you are.  There are a lot of driveways like this in North Carolina.  Looks like he has a garden goin' on there too on the left of the picture.  I'll bet he grows some nice veggies.

DSC_0020.jpg by you.

Not sure if this is a double-wide.  They need help with their lawn.  Yeah, right, I'm one to talk.  My lawn looks just as bad - if not worse!

DSC_0022.jpg by you.

Oooooooo, pretty.  I would feel right at home all tucked away back there in the woods.  Makes me think of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.  I think the birds must be chirping and the rabbits hoppin' along.  Squirrels probably run up the trees and all the animals in the woods listen to the homeowner whistling while they work.

DSC_0023.jpg by you.

Pretty house.  Almost missed it in the frame.  Remember, we're driving along at about 45-50mph now.

DSC_0025.jpg by you.

Okay, what is this?  Small house.  Weeds.  (Looks like our front yard), shacky but cozy, don't you think?

DSC_0026.jpg by you.

I spy a school bus.  I spy a fire hydrant.  I spy some trash in the grass on the side of the road.

DSC_0027.jpg by you.

Hello house!  Sorry I took half a picture of you but I clicked too soon.  Tree needs trimming.

DSC_0030.jpg by you.

Nice pad you got there, Bo.  Nice truck too.  Double cab.  Fancy.  Hey, dig that lopsided basketball hoop.  Or maybe the garage is lopsided.  I can't tell.

DSC_0032Crop+Clone+WarmitupKris.jpg by you.

I almost got me a full house in this frame.  Pretty flowers.  A gardener must live here.

DSC_0038+Clone+Crush.jpg by you.

Hey! I got an entire house in the frame!  Pretty.  So cozy.  There seem to be a lot of cozy homes in North Carolina.  The kinda place that Little Red Riding Hood traveled thru the woods for - to visit Grandma and beat the wolf over the head with a stick.  That is how the story goes, right?

DSC_0039OhSnap.jpg by you.

Hey!  It's the Burger Joint!  Oh, it's deserted.  Hmmm, broken windows too.  Somebody must have been really hungry for a burger to break a window to get one. 

Glen:  "Are We There Yet Dad!"

Dad:  "We have a few more miles to go and a hundred more pictures of the North Carolina landscape before we get there.  Patience is a virtue."

DSC_0040RustyCage.jpg by you.

Some trucker must have gotten lost with this house.  He dumped it on the side of the road and left it there.  On stilts.  Or is that the trailer still stuck under the house?

  DSC_0041DirtBag.jpg by you.

My lens must be dirty.  North Carolina dust ya know.  (just kidding) (Just some crazy Action from Totally Rad called "Dirt Bag" that I thought would look neato with this picture) Another deserted somethin' or another on the side of the road. 

DSC_0042.jpg by you.

Well, Hello Sir.  Are you enjoying your drive on this gray day?  Nice truck.  Hope you don't mind me taking your picture and posting it all over the internet. 

DSC_0050FlareUpGolden by you.

Hey, looky there, it's the Comedy Zone!  Haven't been there.  Don't know if they are actually funny.  Lopsided picture, though.  Big Bear must have hit a bump in the road.

DSC_0043GrandmasTapShoes+CloneStamp by you.

Gas, junk food, where's the pay phone?  Is this 1970?  Was this picture taken with my Kodak? 

DSC_0053TRSX-70 by you.

Yay!  We're here!  Our favorite Family Restaurant - The Americana!  WooHoo!  Cheers!  We're Hungry!  Are we students?  Any students in this car?  You can't park here if you are a student!  No Students allowed!

DSC_0056SelfAdjustments by you.

Of course, Sarah is only interested in talking on the phone.  Girls.  Teenagers.  Phones. Students.

DSC_0066Crop+Claireify by you.

"Oh No, Mom with a camera.  I can never get away from this woman.  I hope I never get pimples."

DSC_0064Blurtool+QuickEdgeBurn by you.

"I'll smile big for you, Mom!  I'm just so happy!"  Check out that big front tooth coming in.

DSC_0057GreetingsfromParadise by you.

Big Bear gets right down to business.  As always.  Of course, he needed his glasses.  Getting older is a pain in the butt-ocks.  I think I'll talk like Forrest Gump tonight.

DSC_0054SelfAdjustment+TRLux+Curves by you.

Of course, why am I not surprised that she has not touched her drink.  Sarah?  Sarah? Are you going to order - Sarah?  Food - Sarah?

DSC_0058PoolParty by you.

My, don't you look happy, son.  Smile.  Maybe you're just hungry.  It's coming.  Promise.  They serve fast here. 

Matthew:  "Mom - I really don't want you to take anymore pictures of me."

Me:  "But Matthew, you are so handsome and adorable and smart and clear complected and handsome - oh, did I say that already?"

DSC_0065Blurtool by you.

Glen is such a good doobie.  He is diggin' right into that menu.


DSC_0063Bandaidtool+Prettyizer+SlightLighten+Curves by you.

Me: "Sarah, look at your menu, Sarah?  Drink your orange drink, Sarah.  Ice is melting, Sarah.  Why are you smiling, Sarah?"

DSC_0067FlareUpFaded by you.

Well, my goodness, who put the brick up your butt?  Na - na na - na - na.

DSC_0071SlightLighten+SX70 by you.

Is that a smile I see?  Nope, I think it's a smirk.  I do see Glen picking his nose, however.  I just hope he doesn't eat them.  Nope, he didn't eat it.  I do think he wiped it on his shorts though.  Such nice table manners.  I've taught them so well.

DSC_0062 by you.

She must be on the phone with some boy or something.  She hasn't been in high school a week yet and she already has the boys on a short leash - THAT'S MY GIRL!  hee hee.  She still hasn't picked up that menu yet. 

Me: "Hey, Sarah, what's the deal?"

Me: "Sarah?"

Me: "What's so funny?  Why are you so happy?  Are you flirting?  What's the joke!"

Why is it that 14 year old girls lose their hearing? 

DSC_0061 by you.

Now that Matthew has had some steak, a bowl of soup, some fried squash, and some french fries, he's ready for a nap.  Sarah is still talking on the phone. 

I think it is time for the check and to go home.  If you would like to see the North Carolina landscape going home, put this post in reverse and look out the driver's side window.

Bath Time Bravery

HannahSleeps.jpg by you.

Hannah, our little fluffy white fuzz ball puppy, managed to get herself into a lot of dirt over the weekend which resulted in her having to have a bath.  The problem with this is that it requires multiple family members to drop what they are doing, clean and scrub out the sink, get multiple towels, the doggy shampoo, the doggy brush, nail clippers, and smell-goody spray, to bathe our little white fur-ball.   It is always an event to remember around here - and a messy one too.


Hannah getting a bath1 by you.

Hannah has learned to dread bath time.  She tries her best to scoot out of the sink.  One look in that direction and she is digging her claws into our neck to save her from the experience. 

Hannah getting a bath2 by you.

Look at that face!  Those eyes! That precious nose!  That dirty beard!  Lordy Mercy, that mohawk! Don't you just want to kiss her?!!

Hannah getting a bath3 by you.

Of course, no bath around here is complete without a mohawk.  It's a family tradition.

DSC_0096 by you.

I don't think Hannah is enjoying this experience.


DSC_0097Blur by you.

As a matter of fact, I am sure that she is not enjoying this at all.  Especially when the soap and the hair get all gooey in her eyes.  "Save me! Save me!"


DSC_0095Clonetool by you.

This is a 5-person job.  One person to hold her.  One person to wash her.  One person to create the mohawk.  One person to take her picture.  One person to dry her.  Or maybe we should just take on multiple jobs to reduce the number of necessary bath time help to 3 people.  After the bath, however, we had a bigger problem - knots.  We're not used to having a puppy who gets all knotted up, and her fur was so knotted up that I couldn't get them out.  This resulted in her having to have a fur-cut. 

DSC_0082Lovely&Ethereal by you.

This, of course, was torture for this poor little pup.

DSC_0083LovelyandEthereal by you.

And Sarah was a good "mommy" to her pup.  She comforted her and held her close.  She kissed her and talked to her.

 DSC_0081PWFreshandColorful by you.

Hannah didn't care.  She just wanted this bath time and furcut to be over with so she could bite our toes.

 DSC_0076Bandaid+Softandfaded+Crop by you.

She buried her head in Sarah's shoulder.  Poor pup.  Sarah showed a lot of compassion.  I was so proud of her.


 DSC_0080Crop+Bandaid+SoftandFaded by you.

Sarah is so grown up.  Hannah is her first puppy.  All hers to take care of and love.  All hers to clean up after and crate train.  All hers to bathe (with the help of 5 other people), and all hers to kiss and hug and play with and tickle.

DSC_0079Crop+Bandaid+Clone+Prettyizer by you.

Hannah and Sarah have several things in common.  First of all and most importantly, they love each other.  They are both sweet.  They both have big puppy-dog eyes.  They both bark a lot.  They both have hair in their face.

 DSC_0102 by you.

They both look to me for love and guidance - and treats.

Hannah Gets a Treat.jpg by you.

And Hannah was such a good doobie - bath and haircut and all - that she definitely got a treat. Oh, and so did Sarah (that required a trip to Barnes & Noble for a book).


DSC_0105QuickEdgeBurn by you.

Unfortunately, they both end up with bad haircuts too if I'm the one with the scissors.

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