Sunday, December 31, 2006


Okay fine, it's me-don't shoot! I think I would rather be Yeti than PORKCHOP! Is there wax out there that strong?

Saturday, December 30, 2006

Do you know what a lambchop is? In referance to facial hair? I thought I knew. Except I called it a "porkchop". Please excuse my ignorance.
I started thinking about this tonight. Why, you might ask? Well, it's a long story involving Sonja, Sasquach, tweezers, and the elusive package of Sizzalean. Too long to really involve anyone but it got me onto the topic of facial hair tonight.
Which one of these do you think most resembles a lamb chop? Any of these photos? Does anyone even really know what a lamb chop looks like? I thought I did but I guess not.
All I really know is that I think some of these guys are pretty cool looking and they look happy, so that's all that matters right? I just wanted to share what I had found while researching my lamb chop/porkchop dilemma. TA-DAAA! There was no other reason for this post. Oh except one more thing...

If you see a Sasquatch a bit east of here, DON'T SHOOT! That's my friend.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Well, I have survived the family Christmas party.

Every year my siblings and I, along with my mom, her other half and all our kids get together at my mom's house for Christmas Eve. If we are all around at the same time, we're talking about 20-25 people (if you count spouses and boyfriend/girlfriends) all in one house, ages ranging in the anonymous age of my mom to the youngest this year, who I think is 3 maybe 4. It's hard to keep up sometimes. I just know I'm glad that I don't have a three year old. HA! (sorry Tim, but better you than me. How old are you going to be when he graduates high school? lol...)

Anyway, this year it was most of us. One of my brothers is in Minnesota. He called though, and we started the two hour game of passing the phone around while we ate, laughed, played pool and made fun of each other, which is in our nature. And I think one of my nephews is in Egypt, not sure on that one though. Another nephew couldn't be bothered, and a niece that was AWOL. But all in all I think I had one of the better times than previous years. Not sure why.

Maybe one of the reasons is that there was definitely a Christmas miracle tonight. I did not forget anyone. At all. Even the schmucks who didn't show got loot. How cool is that?

Have a very Merry Christmas and all that everyone. Love.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

The Selfish Monster

The only time we're nice on the road is if an ambulance has to get through. Suddenly everyone cooperates. People you've been cursing at and giving the finder to are suddenly your good friends. You put away your differences, and peace and harmony prevail as you clear a path for your neighbors in need.

Then it's a mad rush for the Ambulance Wake. Everyone wants to get behind that ambulance. "I saw it first, buddy. I pulled over first so I should be the one to go ahead of you--that's how it works."

It's the Selfish Monster.

Ever been stuck behind as accident, and when you finally see the wreckage, you're actually happy? "Here we go. Here's the problem. Things should pick up now, soon as we pass this carnage."

And then when you tell your friends later, it's all about you.

"Sorry I'm late, some guy's car exploded. Right in front of me. Can you believe my luck? I lost a good fifteen minutes."

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Would you just LOOK at this guy...sheesh!

The great thing about being selfish and self-centered is you can do it anywhere, with anybody. It's not restricted to those you love. And it's not just me. Everyone is self-centered. But of course, I'm really only concerned about myself here.

I know for example, I'm selfish when I drive.

The True Ugliness that lurks in our souls doesn't always come out, but in traffic it comes out plenty. Especially during this season.

When you are stuck in traffic, you hate everybody. "Oh, would you just look at this moron! Why doesn't he just GO? He sees I'm here, doesn't he? Why won't he go? Come on go, go , GO! If you would just go, there wouldn't be traffic. That's why there is traffic: your failure to go!"

We've got places to be and we want to be there NOW. It doesn't matter where. You could be on your way to the dentist to get raw nerves sucked out of your jaw, and you'd still be pissed. "Heyyy, I'm gonna miss the whole nerve sucking thing. Come on, let's go!"

It's always the guy in front of you that you really hate. If he would just go, we all could go and there would BE. NO. TRAFFIC! And of course I am never the "guy in front of you".

And you obsess about this guy. You've been staring at the back of his head for so long you want to be him. "If I could be him, that would be great. No wait. I want to be in front of him. That would be great. If I could just be right there in that spot, that would be great."

Of course when you get to where he is, you're still not happy. "Look where he is now, the lucky sonovabitch. He's still doing better than me. All these people are looking back and staring at me. I know it."

The only way to feel better is to turn around and look at the people behind you. "Yeah well, at least I'm ahead of those losers." We just want to be better off than somebody. At the very least.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Burly needs a break.

Okay, Kim"burly" says she is just too darn busy to write, so you are stuck with me. For those of you who may not know me, I am Sonja, Kim's best friend for over 20 years (whether she admits to it or not). I may not be near as creative or colorful as Burly, but at least it is something new to read. Now that the intro is taking care of, down to business.
I thought that I may write about the wonderful holiday season, as I have recently taken a seasonal job as a "Customer Service Representative" for Harry and David's inbound call center. After three days of "my-ass-is-numb" training in how to use their software program, proper phone etiquette and getting the instructor's nasty cold; we were thrown into shifts starting at 6 a.m. of 6 hours a day. They warned us that within our first 2-3 days we will be monitored to make sure we are doing our best and up-selling/cross-selling/giving the proper specials at the correct times, keeping our average call time down to 7 minutes and 45 seconds (we get bonuses that way).
My only concern was "Gee-Golly, I hope I don't cuss...out loud anyway".
My first call came in...I was shaky, my eyes darted around to see if anyone was within earshot to overhear me totally messing it up, knuckles white, I plunged.
ME: "Thank you for calling..."
CUSTOMER: "Your talking too fast."
Screech. ME: Okay, My Mind is saying-"GAWD HOW OLD ARE YOU? LIKE 101?" So I proceeded like I was talking to a 2 year old explaining the ins/outs of wall sockets and pennies.
ME: "", well, you get it.
CUSTOMER: "What number are you talking about, I don't see any number."
ME: ""
CUSTOMER: "I know what you said, I ain't a fu**ing retard." Blink.
ME: My Mind-OH MY GAWD, DID SHE JUST SAY FU**ING?, I nearly burst out laughing, it sounded absolutely ridiculous coming out of an OLD, I mean OLD, lady's mouth. For this reason, she earned a nickname, now she will be known as FOL (F**king Old Lady). Okay self, control the giggle. Now I had to decide...I could try to pull up her account another way, or I could continue and see how pissed an old lady could get me and probably get the "assist staff" involved-hmmmm.
ME: ""
FOL: "Oh, there it is, is it in pink?"
By now I knew that all the rest of my calls are going to have to be 60 seconds or less to get my bonus-because there is no way that I was going to end this transaction in under an hour.
ME: "Yes, that is it."
FOL: "Hold on, I need to get my glasses."
ME: My Mind, "@#%&*$!!!!!!"
FOL: "Okay are you ready sweetheart?"
ME: My mind, "Huh? She DID NOT just call me sweetheart."
Out loud: "Yes ma'am."
FOL: "0137......oh sh*t, is that a 5 or a 6?"
ME: My Mind, "Fu** lady, I don't know." Out loud: "We could try it both ways if you would like."
FOL: "Aren't you the smart one?! Okay, here goes..Are you ready?"
ME: My Mind, "Like fu**ing five years ago!!!!" Outloud: "Yes ma'am".
As you can probably imagine, the order took 47 minutes, 1 item sent to a brother-in-law, a grand total of $38.05. Not once did I cuss, spit, throw myself into the computer-or make a single smart-ass remark. A personal best, I think.
The moral of this story-Remember the whole reason why we have a holiday season. Although you are stressed, tired and just plain fu**ing sick of everything and could go off the deep end at anyone/anything at anytime-BE NICE...Out loud anyway.

Nothing to say...

I've been a little over worked and tired lately, so I don't have much to write about. Or at least I can't get much past the constant fuzziness in my brain lately, but I wanted to share something with you. Check out this guy:

Funny humorist. Dude cracks me up. I think we might of even been separated at birth, except for the fact that I am much better looking.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Bras in the breeze...

You know you've had a long day, when you answer the door with the bra you were taking off, hanging out from underneath your shirt because you only took one arm out when you were taking it off with out removing your shirt. (Ladies, I know that you know what I'm talking about) Yup, just a-waving in the breeze as I talk to the church people who knock on my door. I'm tired.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

I'm still, just a girl.

Getting out of the house in generally harder than doing what you plan to do once you actually get out of the house. There are a thousand false starts.

There's the "Who has the keys?" - "You had them" - "No, I gave them to you" drama, which is always fun.

There's the "Did you leave the answering machine on?" - "Um, it's not working" - "What do you mean it's not working, let me see" one act play.

And the ever-popular, "Is it going to be cold later?" - "What am I, a weatherman? Just take a jacket and lets go" cartoon.

That is one my husband particularly enjoys--the jacket dilemma. I, though a remarkably intelligent woman, refuse to accept that the weather at the end of the day is often going to be different than it is when I left the house. I become a child. "I'm not taking a jacket. I'll be fine." Which then relegates my husband into the "Just-take-it-and-throw-it-into-the-car-what-the-hell-is-the-big-deal" role.

But there are two opposing forces at work here. I don't want to take a jacket for vanity reasons. It's a wardrobe issue. The sweater doesn't go with anything and it makes me look bulky, so I would rather freeze than look bulky and clash my outfit. (only on special occasions do I actually care about this.)

He, on the other hand, has his own interest in mind. Because he knows that later, when I'm cold, he's going to have to do the Gentleman Thing of taking off his jacket and draping it over my shoulders, for which I will love him and he will resent me deeply.

Understand: If we were caught in a surprise hail storm, or the country was invaded and we had to flee suddenly with only what we had on, he would have no problem. He would give me his jacket instinctively. Sure, he would freeze, but he would be a hero. He'd be getting something out of it. You see?

But here, we have a choice. It's not hailing. We are not fleeing. We're standing in front of a closet with a myriad of jackets and sweaters and coats and protective gear for every potential five-degree variance--but no, "I'll be fine," I say.

So we go. And of course, later, it's freezing, and I'm huddling in his jacket, and he, who knew to bring a jacket, is wearing no jacket. And the kicker is: It's not like his jacket looks so good on me anyway. It probably looks worse than the whatever jacket of my own I would have put on. But somehow it's ok, because people know what's going on. They won't judge me. When you see a woman with a wildly mismatched jacket draped over her shoulders, you never say, "Boy, what was she thinking? That doesn't go at all." You'll say, "Wow, isn't he sweet? Look how he sacrificed his own jacket for her."

And what he's thinking is, "I'm such a schmuck. I'm a schmuck, and I'm freezing. I actually thought this through. I planned ahead, and I'm still freezing."

Friday, November 24, 2006

There is something to be said about the Friday after Thanksgiving. Especially when you don't shop. I'm not that crazy.

Ahhh....the dregs of the food comma that started yesterday have a pleasant effect. As I type this, I am watching the Oregon State Beavers kick some major butt of the University of Oregon Ducks, while wearing my silky black pajamas and a Beaver jersey. My husband is cozied up under a blanket on the couch and the son is hanging at a friends house. And if I close my eyes, I cannot see the rest of the mess from yesterday that still needs to be cleaned up.

And the best part of that, is that I have to work tomorrow and I know that most likely the mess will be gone by the time I get home. Ain't life grand?

But of course in my life, nothing comes without having to pay for it, but I think I will save that one for tomorrow. Right now I'm going to take a nap. My husband on the couch is looking pretty darn comfy.

Go Beavers!

Friday, November 17, 2006

Good Tunes, New Holes & A Personal Post Script...

Well, here we are getting more and more close to Turkey Day, and if I don't have enough stress in my life I seem to create more on my own. Sigh.

Wednesday, my husband and I went to see Taj Mahal. He's a great blues artist that my husband especially likes. Seats were great, the show was wonderful and the theater that it was in is a historical one that we always enjoy going to. The McDonald Theater. Wonderful night.
Until we got home about 11:30, anyway. Brand new hole in the ceiling, but this time in the foyer right above both the front door and the door into the kitchen. About two feet by 3 feet. Oh, yeah. Fun for all ages.
So that leads me to the "adding more stress part". Currently I work about 24 hours at the local "mom & pop" market a few blocks from my house. But this morning I am going to interview for a seasonal job working as a customer service rep for Harry & David. You might of heard of them. They sell catalog stuff from their Medford, Oregon orchards and shop. Nationally. Anyway, I just want to get out of this house that much faster, so I am willing to work two jobs to get it. Wish me luck.
Oh yeah, and a special message for anyone reading this who has been, might be, or could be invited to Thanksgiving at my house: Everyone, and anyone who shows up is always welcome, invited or not actually. And we mean it. Whether or not you choose to feel welcome is your problem, not mine. Where ever anyone chooses to spend their Thanksgiving, I wish them a happy one.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

What a Dickweed!

Can you believe this turd? Check out the money he's going to make now:

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - More than a decade after he was acquitted of murdering his ex-wife and her friend, O.J. Simpson will describe in a televised interview how he would have committed the crime if he were the one responsible, the Fox network said.

The taped interview was conducted by publisher Judith Regan, who is putting out a book Simpson wrote in which he "hypothetically describes how the murders would have been committed," Fox said in a statement on Tuesday.

The interview will be the basis for a two-part Fox special, tentatively titled "O.J. Simpson: If I Did It, Here's How It Happened," airing on November 27 and November 29, Fox said. The book, "If I Did It," goes on sale on November 30.

A California jury in 1995 found the former football star not guilty of murder in the June 1994 stabbing deaths of his ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend, Ron Goldman, concluding a sensational trial that riveted the world's attention.

A civil court jury in February of 1997 found Simpson liable for the deaths and ordered him to pay $33.5 million in damages to the families of the victims.

Lawyers for Goldman's parents have said they would attempt to garnish any of Simpson's future earnings to satisfy the judgment, which he has vowed never to pay.

Simpson has always insisted that he was wrongly accused of the killings.

According to Fox, Simpson agreed to an unrestricted interview with Regan, in which he "describes how he would have committed the murders if he were the one responsible for the crimes."

In a brief promotional clip from the interview posted on Fox's Web site, Simpson, says, "I don't think any two people could be murdered without everybody being covered in blood."

He is also seen setting aside a copy of a book he is reading from -- presumably his own -- and saying, "I can't do no more of this."

Regan Books is an imprint of book publisher HarperCollins, which, like Fox, is a unit of News Corp. Ltd.
© Reuters 2006. All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

I'm Still Just a Girl...

Ok, I know that I said the details were coming but everytime I think about the incident last night, it freaks me out. So I will put it in a nutshell.

After scooping up with a shovel the baby nutria that my dog Mazzy deposited on my back step, I soon dicovered it wasn't quite dead and started to MOVE while on the shovel. It was almost dead, but wiggled enough so that it fell of the shovel onto the ground. I attempted to re-scoop the damn thing, but my case of heebie-jeebies was so strong that I went to bed instead, right after I called my husband at work to inform him of what he needed to remove when he got home.

The end. Yuck


OK, note to self and any others who may encounter same:

Be aware of the consequences when removing the dead "thing" from your back step with a shovel. Details to follow.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

I Am Not Going to Panic, I Swear

Oh my goodness, it's almost here. Thanksgiving that is. All year my husband tells all his "friends" to come over. Sigh.

To make a long story short; I don't really like people all that much. My husband is a people person. I guess one would have to be if they were a bartender. Or at least a good one, anyway. * Don't get me wrong. I have certain people that I enjoy being around. I just don't enjoy having to be nice to people. And the only person that I do that for is my husband and my son. Oh, and maybe for my best friend Sonja, if I feel generous, (hee hee). But fortunately 99.99% of the people who come to our house to stuff there gullets are pretty cool people.

Oh, I guess I better explain a bit. Every year we have what my husband has Christened to be "Stragglers Thanksgiving." At least for the last 6 years. We (he) invites anyone who has no other place to go; single people, or just people we know that have families far away. We also get the folks who have the family thing and just stop by afterwards for beer, fire and relaxing conversation.

Last year we had about forty-two people swing through the driveway, and a total of five dogs running around the back yard, three were ours. And since we have a house that is approximately 965 sq ft. we have tents outside. We string a t.v. outside for football (can't have turkey day without it), and this year are having three fire-pit-type-things going.

So getting ready for turkey day, we got two turkeys; one in the roaster, one in the BBQ, and one big-assed ham in the slow cooker, among all the other trimmings. Last year, I think I got to suck on the bone in the ham (quit snickering Sonja, but I'm not kidding) by the time I got our there. Vultures. Just kidding. Mostly..

So basically, all year I get to be persnickety about people; i.e: not always being nice, polite for no reason, and I make up for it by inviting my entire friggin' family, and virtual strangers to my home once a year, where I especially dislike company.**

A bitch some might call me. But only behind my back. And they are partly right. I really don't like people. Or maybe they just don't like me, whatever. But I do like entertaining. Weird. Maybe I should just stay in the kitchen. But with my own t.v. of course. Gotta have football. Too bad we always have to watch the Cowboys.

*disclaimer: I love everyone who comes to our house, I'm just crazy and in freakout mode when I'm entertaining.

**I'm not 100% comfortable until at least 80% of the guests are more that 50% sloshed. You do the math.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Eek! Eek! The sky is falling! The sky is falling!

Sorry people for not writing lately, but boy oh boy has it been an interesting few days. I'm gonna make this a short one, for I have tons to do, and unfortunately none of it is fun.

We have been having massive rain for the last few days, in fact we received over two inches yesterday alone. On Sunday, my bathroom ceiling collapsed due to the leak that we have had for over four years that our landlord pretty much ignored. So you can imagine how much fun we've been having.

The next day the truck started having issues, so we were driving around a Chevy Classic loaner car with big blue Hertz magnets on the side announcing to everyone who read it that yes, in fact it is a loaner car. Ugly and sad. Two days. Guess what? The issues of course magically disappeared when the mechanic drove it for two days. Sigh... $82 bucks wasted.

Now we are off to parent teacher conferences, mortgage broker interviews (I'm getting the heck outta this house), haircuts and if I find the time make dinner later. Enjoy your days...

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Do You Remember Reading Buddies?

As a couple there is something to be said about reading the newspaper together. First of all, for some reason, whatever section the other person is reading always looks more interesting than the one you're reading. Even if you've already read it, you still want to read it again.

"I didn't realize how good that travel section looked til I saw you thumbing through it like that. What is that picture there--Portugal?"

I love the fact that we go through the real estate section of every Sunday paper and look at pictures of places that we have no intention or possibility of ever buying, but we still check for price fluctuations.

"Oh look at this--that lakefront property just went down to five bazillion, as oppposed to the unreasonable six-two they were asking last month. They're obviously weakening."

Some things in the paper are better not to share. But you don't know which ones they are until it's too late. My husband does this a lot.

He's reading an article about this woman in Houston who was fired seemingly unfairly, from a very good job. He's reading, and quietly, to himself, he goes, "Hmm...tsk...geez."

I go, "What?"

"Hm? Oh nothing, just this article. This woman, in Houston she had a great job, and they let her go because they discovered that years ago she was a prostitute...just kind of sad."

I say the required, "Hmm...tsk...geez."

Then about five minutes go by and for some reason it's stuck in my head. And looking at him like it's his fault, "What is it with prostitutes?"

"What do you mean?"

"I mean the whole thing with prostututes and men--I just don't get it."

Now see, when you are couple, each person represents their gender. You are the flag bearer for the whole team. And if any member of your team, anywhere in the world, past or present, does anything to offend, you have to answer for it. (Woman Law)

"No it has nothing to do with prostitutes, Babe, I'm just saying, it's kinda sad...You know, here's a woman, got her life together and everything...and...then...hey...uh...what's that picture there, Portugal?" Then he tried to get me to read the Travel section together and tries to get off the whole Houston thing.

But there are after shocks. (Woman Law)

Hours later, we're eating, and I turned to him, "Are you chewing loudly?"


"Well, you're bugging me."

So, surprisingly he figures out my womanly thought process: eating chicken, BBQ sauce, Texas--"The prostitute lady? That's what you're upset about?"

I say, "I just don't get it."

Ah,well the complexity of our thought process is not for man to figure out. It's there job to just deal with it.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Sew, a needle pulling thread...La, a note to follow so...

I, yes, I am amazing. I never knew that it was actually possible to amaze myself, but I have. Brace yourselves people but I have some fantastic news. Last night...I sewed. On a sewing machine. Yes, yes I know. Hard to believe isn't it? Ok, so what if what I made might of turned out to look like it was made for a Cabbage Patch Doll instead of my husband, but we'll get to that later.

Every year I commit myself to doing the Halloween costumes for my husband and myself. I love this day. Just the creativity of finding a unique costume idea, putting it together and hopefully having it actually work is just too cool for words. But usually I don't have to actually sew anything. Oh, it might involve some glue (Magic Stitch is my very best friend), and maybe a little bit of hand-stitching, safety pins and/or staples, but never actual machine sewing on my part.

Usually my thought process is to go to the second hand stores, Goodwill or what have you, and walk around getting ideas. Then I buy the items, mesh them together and voila'! I now have a Halloween costume. Oh, but not this year. This year, the same year I decided to go back to work out side the home, the year that it seems as if I have absolutely no time, ever; is the year that I could only find two pieces of our costumes already made. And it's not like I can just change costume ideas willy nilly. (My husband has a huge mustache that I have to incorporate into the costume every year. Let's just say that he would not make a very good Raggedy Andy or whatever. But he has in the past been a leprechaun, werewolf, Yosemite Sam, and a Genie, that I can recall.) So anyway, I waited until the last minute, and called my mom two days ago to see if she wanted to help me (ie; do it for me) sew the stuff together.

For some unforeseen reason, I cannot sew on a sewing machine to save my life. The whole thread wrapping around this and that thinga-ma-gingy deal, just frustrates me. And don't get me started on the bobbin thing. I think I was frightened by a sewing machine as a child or something. My other two sisters can sew. They actually own sewing machines that they actually use. I own one too. It's an antique and I like to look at it. But that's about it.

So, my mom was excited about the whole thing, and was like, "no problem." I had no pattern, just an idea. But she whips out a pattern for a 1970's woman's bathrobe and says, "this should work with a little changing." Okaaayyy. I left it up to her.

Well she got my costume done. Thank God. It was the most difficult. But her hands were hurting and I said don't worry about it, I'll do it. What the hell was I thinking? I'll do it? I'll do it? Did I just magically turn into Suzy freakin' Homemaker? When did I learn how to sew? Ugh.

So then I have to work. While at work my friend Sonja shows up with her sewing machine. I told her on the phone that I CAN'T SEW, but she insisted. I believe her exact words were, "No Kim, you don't understand. This is practically a Mickey-Mouse-Easy-Bake-Oven kind of sewing machine. Just point and shoot kinda thing. Trust me, if I can make curtains on this, you can sew with it." Ok, so she brings it over.

It was a cute little thing. No bigger than a shoe box. The picture above is the actual size. There is something about something being small to take some of the fear away. Kinda like a baby lion or wolf. Cute when small, but I don't want to mess with it when it gets bigger.

After I got off work at 9 pm, I went to work on my husbands costume. I eyeballed the measurements. (you mean I shoulda used a tape measure?) And cut and sewed and snipped and pinned and ironed and unpinned. I did it. I made a tunic. Kinda. So it's longer on one side than the other. I was distracted. I didn't have a good work surface area. I was on top of my washing machine with the cats meowing at me the whole time because that is where they eat and I hadn't fed them yet. I hate those cats.

So by midnight, I had the finished product. A slightly askew, grass green tunic, with a gold lapel. What was supposed to be a top for a samurai costume, ended up looking more like something Liberace would go ga-ga over in a catalog. But my husband, bless his heart, said, "add the swords and daggers and instant samurai." Good thing he's not going into a contest and just going into work. Sigh...

Friday, October 20, 2006

Ah, The Smell of Fall

Are you in the mood for fall yet? I begin to start thinking autumn when the leaves need to be raked, and the days get a little nippy. It is "sweater weather." Soon it will be time for cleaning out the closets, and checking to see if my sweaters survived, or whether they have "angel wings" on the shoulders from being on clothes hangers all summer.

My world has taken on an earth-tone hue, reflecting the colors of changing leaves, brown grasses, and dried up vegetation. Something about the bright oranges, yellows, and reds appeals to the eye, causing my blood to run a little faster and my heart a little slower - at least until I remember the leaves to be raked.

For some unknown reason, I have the urge to go for a walk, observe and enjoy the changes of nature. There is nothing quite as satisfying as the rustle of dry
leaves as I walk through piles gathered by the wind, and watch as the wind scatters the rest of the leaves that need to be raked.

If my spirit is not revived by now, there is always the harvest, besides the leaves that need to be raked. How anyone can look at a pumpkin patch with its bright orange fruits and remain sad is beyond me. I always think of autumns past, when pumpkins were carved into jack-o-lanterns to make smiling lanterns in late October.

Change is all around. There is certain sadness in seeing the death of a million leaves, the withering of flowers, not to mention all the leaves that need to be raked. The long cold winter looms ahead with trees naked to the bark, and bending in the icy wind.

But that is even more of an inspiration to cling to the last remains of summer, revel in the splendor of falling leaves, and order fireplace wood. I think of children returning to school, of football games, of Halloween. The lazy days of summer are behind me, and I have plans to make, as well as leaves to be raked.

What is "in the mood for fall" anyhow? Could it be that feeling that comes with the passage of time, with loss, and with change? But with loss, there also comes the opportunity for renewal. Fall is the motivation for renewing energy and zest. I am forced to see reality, in spite of the leaves that need to be raked.

I never believe that it could possibly be October already. But, just look at the rolled up bales of hay in the fields, not to mention the mountains of leaves to be raked. I'm never quite ready. Each passing season forces change, for better or for worse.

The brightly colored leaves are here for only a brief period of time before they wither and die. I try to learn from them and be willing to accept changes gracefully, to know that change is something beautiful that can create awe and wonder, as well as leaves to be raked.

Fall is the splendor of nature in all its glory. But autumn, like life, is bitter sweet. It smells of the smoke of burning leaves and tastes of the sweetness of apple cider. Fall is glorious to behold and should be enjoyed for what it is. Like life, it is but a season, changing too quickly and gone too fast -- unlike the leaves to be raked that hang around forever.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Pinecone Banner Research Link

I know that this is a weird post for my regulars but I need to share. For those of you who found this site via a search engine looking for a "Pinecone Research banner link" Well here you go.

It was working as of five minutes ago. After clicking on the link above, scroll down to the article titled Pinecone Research, and there you will find a link If that one doesnt work try going directly to the Pinecone signup site here. Sometimes that works, sometimes it doesn't.

For those who want to know what I am talking about, Pinecone research is a very reputable research/survey company that pays a minimum of $5 every time you do a survery. They vary in length but usually no longer than ten minutes. Also often you get to do product research. They send you stuff to test and you keep the stuff and get paid for doing it. They pay by check via the mail, and is pretty fast. The signup links are elusive and only last a little while so finding a working link is rare. Anyway good luck.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Losing weight is hard to do...

I sometimes hate working out. My friend Sonja seems to think that everyday chores are the same thing as working out. They might be for her. But in a dazzling display of mutual support, we've learned to talk ourselves out of working out.

"Look, I don't feel like working out, you don't feel like working out--let's just skip it."

"Nobody's going to know, right?"

"It'll be our secret."

"Right, we'll just continue to look the way we do. And if anyone asks, we ran today."

The truth is nobody likes to work out. We just do it to keep up with people who look better than we do. If we would just agree to not work out--and I mean everyone, across the board--we'd be a lot happier. We could eat cupcakes and sleep late. The problem is it would only take one person in good shape to ruin it for the whole group. "Great, now we gotta look like her..." And the next morning all be back running, lifting and sweating against our will.

Weight. Some people talk like it's nothing. "I'll just lose it after the holidays. It won't be hard--I mean I've only been eating like a pig these last...What is it...3...4...20 years? I'll have some cottage cheese for lunch; I'll be fine."

We put a lot of pressure on cottage cheese. We've convinced ourselves it's a Miracle Food. If it's on your plate, you're on a diet. Doesn't matter what else is on your plate. It could be three cheeseburgers and a mountain of lard. Drop a scoop of cottage cheese on there--it's a Diet Plate.

It's the same with a peach half. Somehow it's a Diet Enforcer. "Sixteen pork patties with a piano-size pile of potatoes, and a fresh peach half." And you think, "Peach half--how bad can it be? It's obviously a special Dieter's Platter."

If you ever see cottage cheese and half a peach on a plate, for God's sake be careful. You could literally disappear. Your body mass could evaporate into thin air--so powerful are these nutritious diet items. Sheesh.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

I Froze My Butt Off While He Thought About Shaving

A lot of couples shower together. It's supposed to be romantic and sensual. Truth? It's not all it's cracked up to be. Because one of you is not getting water. One of you, therefore, is not taking a shower.

Let's be honest; one of you is having a great time, it's wonderful. The other one is in the back of the shower going, "You got a sweater up there? Maybe a windbreaker? Something with a hood would be nice. I would get it, but my ass is frozen to the wall here."

Then there are people who use the shower to do everything. They shave, they brush their teeth, they do their taxes, everything.

My husband can't shave in the shower. He says it's too risky. Ever see the guys who shave with an electric razor while driving? What is that about? Are you telling me that there's no other opportunity in their day to have a razor at their throat than while doing sixty around a curve? Surely they would squeeze a moment in before breakfast. Or at least wait for a red light.

My husband says he needs to be on dry, non-moving land to shave. And even then it's not easy. He has no mirror depth perception. It's all distorted; left is right, forward is back--he can't tell where he is. You should see him try to look at the back of his head with another mirror. I don't know why it is but I have never met a man who could do this. Only women. He can never find himself. He'd be like, "Honey, something's wrong with the back of my head." And I'm trying oh so hard not to roll my eyes when I tell him, "That's not the back of your head, it's the back scrubber with the sea sponge, hanging from the shower head." I told him the best thing for him to do is to find someone who looks roughly like him, and look at the back of his head.

My husband has a mustache, but he has in the past tried to grow a beard. But as it turns out, he is not a Beard Guy. Certain guys look good in beards. He looks, at best, like he's on his way to something that may, ultimately, with a lot of work, become a beard.

His beard starts to look promising, then in four days it just gets tired and stops. People see him unshaven and ask, "Oh, what is that--three, four days?"

And he has to tell them, "Sadly no, since last summer. But thank you for caring."

And they have to ask. They see stubble and have to comment. "What, are you growing a beard?"

What if he wasn't? What if he simply forgot to shave? Now they are just criticizing his hygiene. Like if you forgot to shower they'd say, "Hey, did you mean to smell like that? Are you going for some effect or are you just woefully negligent?"

Friday, October 06, 2006

Ultimate Drunken Master Tribute - Jackie Chan

My husband thought this was one of the coolest things he had seen in a long time. Check it out.

Monday, October 02, 2006

The World of Self Service

An acquaintance of mine mentioned how much he hated standing in line at the convenience store to pay for gas at the local AMPM. Invariably there is someone buying lottery tickets and three packs of cigarettes -- and then scratching off the tickets before leaving the counter while he continues to wait. What about "pay at the pump"?

I think credit card scanners on gas pumps are one of the greatest timesaving inventions ever invented, as I no longer have to go inside to pay for gas. When real "service stations" went the way of the dinosaur, I became accustomed to inconvenience. At first, I thought "pay at the pump" only worked if you wanted to buy gas on credit. Then I found that bankcards also work and they can zap the money right out of your checking account. I haven't been inside a gas station or convenience store since.

In the interest of saving time, I've learned to use those digital scanners at Wal-Mart and the grocery stores with exactly the right flick of the wrist to scan the card right. The trouble is that every business seems to have a slightly different machine, and it is so easy to accidentally push the wrong button and end up canceling the entire transaction.

I'm sure the day is coming when no one will carry cash at all, just plastic cards. Automation reached a new low, however, when self-service checkout aisles were installed at my local Wal-Mart and Albertson's. With this new "convenience" you get to scan your own groceries instead of standing in a checkout line. Just as I was getting used to shopping carts that were unloaded by the cashier, these idiotic self-service scanners came along to destroy my composure again.

And I've noticed that I'm not the only one who avoids them. And for some unfathomable reason these machines seem to hate me. I scan my item. The computer sits there stupidly doing nothing. Eventually it says, "Scan your first item." But I already did! What to do now, scan it again and get charged twice? "Put the item in the bag," says the machine. But I already have! "Put the item in the bag," it says again. So, I take it out and do it again, just to make a machine happy. "Scan the item before putting it in the bag!" shouts the machine while everyone turns to look at me as if I'm a shoplifter. Then the "cashier" that has been assigned to monitor the six self service registers, slowly ambles over to "help" me, of course with a look on her face that shows clearly how stupid she thinks I am. No wonder these self-service machines are avoided like debris on the Interstate.

I wish someone from the South had put their own mannerisms in the machine. Southern machines would have better manners and speak like it just walked off the set of Gone With the Wind: "Y'all scan yer item now. Take your time, honey, don't get your britches in a wad." This would be so much more customer friendly.

Speaking of talking machines, the ATM machine at the local Bank of America used to have a British accent. I called it the Princess Di ATM. I guess they eventually figured out why everyone was snickering --- It is Bank of AMERICA, isn't it? . They finally got rid of it in favor of one of those touch-the-screen things. It doesn't talk; it only pings. Reminds me of a clown with a horn. I'm afraid if I do something wrong it will squirt me with seltzer. This is obviously another instance when it should speak with a Southern accent. What an ATM machine from the South should say is something like: "Howdy, y'all! Welcome to Bank of America, southern style. Just put your deposit down yonder in the slot, hon. Here's some of your hard-earned money back to spend. Y'all be sure and come see us again. Ya hear?"

Corporations are so out of touch with the real world and real people. They really need to get out from behind those desks and see what real people talk like, don't they? Although now that I think about it, maybe there are some neighborhoods that the machines shouldn't emulate. I would get pissed if I was in the "wrong" neighborhood, and the ATM called me a bitch or a 'ho.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Dryers, Broken Hearts, & Chicken Pot Pie.

So my mom was whining that I hadn't written anything in a while. So, here I am writing. I have been a little, tiny bit busy.

After finally getting the son situated in high school, I thought, "Whew! Now I can take a breath." I was so totally wrong.

I started a job outside the home about a week before school started. I have not done this for quite some time so it took me a bit to get myself in the swing of things. Balancing housework, yardwork, commitments to other people, the husband and so forth. It has been a challenge at the best of times. But this last week put me through the ringer.

First of all, the "new to me" dryer that we recently got, started making the most god-awful noises. High pitch squealing and screeching. Then a sound that reminded me of a card in the spokes in a bike wheel. But imagine the card is made out of a two-by-four. And the spokes, three inch thick titanium. Maybe, you just might be able to imagine what it sounded like. Oh and the squealing? It was so high pitched that when I was talking on the phone with my friend, she couldn't hear it. I guess it was at such a high octave that the cell phone couldn't transmit it. I'm not kidding. I wish I were.

So I asked my son to take the dryer apart and look at it. Three days later he got it half way apart and said, "I don't know what to do with this. Can't you just buy a new one?" "Screw it. Just put it back together," I told him. At least it still dries clothes, right?

But I few days later, I finally decided I had had enough. I had four hours before I had to be at work so I thought, "Ok. I will either fix it, or not. Doesn't matter if I mess it up, I'm prepared (although unwilling) to buy a new one anyway." I went online to a website that my friend Sonja sent to me. (clue #1: She knew about the site because this was her dryer in the first place. Sigh...) The website showed me how to take the darn thing apart. Without that site, I would of been either trying to fix it through the teeny access panel in the back, or I would of been trying to figure out how to make a magic shrinking potion so I could travel into the dryer ala "The Fantastic Voyage".

So I got it apart, and discovered that cat pee traveled under the dryer to dry there just so I would have to lay in it. I also decided to go ahead and change the belt since I was already in it. I drove a couple of miles down the road, got the belt, and compared horror stories with some other chick that was trying to fix her washer, then high tailed it home.

And when I got home, I discovered I need help to lift the drum. I called to my husband to help me for a sec, he arrived in the laundry room with a very harassed look on his face. "What?" I asked. "Nothing." he said. "What do you need?"

Now you would think that after being together for about seven and a half years he would know, that I know, always, and I mean always, what he is thinking at all times. In fact sometimes just to remind him of that fact, I call him at work (he's a bartender) and say, "She is not that hot, and the boobies are fake." Then I hang up. Usually about three minutes later he calls back, "How do you freaking do that?!?! How did you know I was looking at her?! Innocently of course." What he doesn't need to know is that any woman, at anytime could do this. All men, ok, all straight men, are looking at or thinking about a chick they either saw earlier or at the time I am calling. So it's elementary. I can almost see the smug smiles on the woman reading this while nodding. And the still confused looks on the men's faces.

But I digress. Anyway, he was annoyed because he was trying to eat his lunch. Yup. Chicken pot pie. Never mind me, who is frantically trying to fix the dryer so I can get the clothes out of the bathroom that are hanging up, so I can take a showerand get to work. Never mind the fact that I now have to be at work in about 45 minutes. Sorry to interrupt your FREAKIN' CHICKEN POT PIE! I'm ok. Kimberly is a-ok. I just smiled and asked him to lift the drum. Took him all of 5 seconds. So guess what? I fixed it! I fixed it! I went to work and told everybody I saw. I fixed my gawd darned dryer. All by myself! I practically wanted to get myself a t-shirt, that said "I fixed my dryer, you can too!"

By this time I thought I was pretty magnificent. (Hey, mom? Remember when I used to sign all my school papers "Kimberly the Great"? Well, this is how I felt.) Anyway, I had also been recently clued in on a site called . If you look at the site, you can learn more about it. But basically it's a huge classified ad thing. and it's free. I put my very ugly fridge in a free ad. I was very honest about it. The fact that it used to be yellow, and I got bored and painted purple with house paint. Blah blah blah. Someone actually took it. YES!!! It's been sitting in my driveway covered in a camo designed tarp (I guess I was hoping it would blend into the yard) for about a year. My husband had the idea that we would use it for beer or something. We don't even have a garage for cripes sake! Anyway it's GONE. WHOO HOO! Sometimes I amaze myself with my magnificence. It made me feel so good that that was out of here.

I have also been doing the Dr. Laura (I really don't like that woman, but this is for comparison reasons.) thing for my friend who recently broke up with her long time boy friend. I will spare the details, but any of the ladies out there reading this who have had a best friend, and any guys who have dated or have been married to a woman who has had a best friend, you know the time on the phone this takes. Its a strenuous job. But I would do it for her every day if I had to. That's what I'm here for. (But I don't necessarily want to. (grin) It is very stressful though. So I'm a little wiped out.

I spoke a little too soon on the Super Kimberly the Dryer Fixer Extraordanaire feeling. Last night while typing the first part of this long missive, I was enjoying the quiet hum of the dryer, when suddenly I hear a small bang, I look up and see a flash of light come from behind the dryer, a popping noise, ppfft, small puff of smoke and then nothing. Shit.

Everything stopped. I started banging around, cussing, pulling the still wet clothes out of the dryer. About a half hour later, after I had hung everything up in the bathroom again. And I had already started rearanging my finaces in my head so I could go get a new dryer the next day, I thought I should check the breaker. Mmm. It was off. So I switched it back to the on position, went over and turned the dryer back on. Works fine. Weird. The scary smoke and light show still concerns me, but it dries the clothes.

So I guess this all leads me back to the beginning. The conversation which started out with my mom whining about the blog, also included the instruction from her to never leave your clothes dryer running when you are not at home. I scoffed at the time. But not now. Because now that I am the experienced dryer "non-fixer" I run my dryer with one ear cocked to listen for a pop, and the fire extinguisher at the ready.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

E-Bay Lesson #1

All week I've been trying to "win" an auction on e-bay. I'm not a big E-Bayer. In fact I've only bought two things on e-bay and I've never sold anything. But, I was bored one day and cruising around on E-Bay Motors when I came across a 1980 Subaru Brat.

My ex-husband had one of those once, back when my son was still about knee high. I remember he painted it Safety Yellow with spray paint after I had been in two (not my fault) fender benders in less than a month. The better to see me, I guess. If you don't know what Safety Yellow looks like; try to think back into the eighties when neon orange, green and yellow were the way to go for clothes. The yellow maybe matches what color that Brat was. Every morning when you went to go to work the darn thing was covered in bugs. Bugs that thought you were one giant flower. And the bees! Ugh, don't get me started.

Sorry, I digress. Where was I? Oh, E-bay. All week we were the highest bidder. Whoo hoo, I thought. What were the odds that I was going to find my son's first project car that reminded him of his dad, and find it within driving distance from us, and a reasonable price? (I was only paying half, and my son the other half.) I'm glad I told my kid not to get his hopes up. Although mine were up there a little bit too.

We didn't win. During the last hour the bidding war was on. And even with a friend pitching in another seventy-five bucks we would never had gotten it. I would never have paid the end amount anyway for what it was. It finally sold for $795. My top bid was $500. Let me put it this way. I think that either the person who won the auction is going to see the Brat in person and back out of the deal or somebody is going to get ripped off.

Hello? People? It's a '80 Brat for shits sake! And it is missing the rear jump seats, and the tailgate. According to the interior pictures, the dash, doors and steering wheel are from three different vehicles. Not to mention the funky home paint job. I had a hard time going over $400 on this.

Anyway I guess I'm just bummed that we didn't get it. My son is disappointed but that's life I guess. We'll find him something else I'm sure. It's just kinda sucky that we did get our hopes up by being the highest bidder all week only to be shot down at the last minute. I kinda feel like I was cheated.

Well, wish us luck on the next one.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Dear Person in Charge of School Funding;

I have a child starting high school this year, and I would like to know why it is going to cost me over $400 dollars just for activity fees for my son to start school? (Not to mention the dollars for school supplies, shoes and clothes for the year) $145 for the first sport. $125 for the second, and oh my; graciously you have put the third sport free, if all three are in one year. How kind. What kid can participate in three sports a year, and still keep his grades up?

Oh, and might I mention the $35 a year ASB once a year fee, that I am paying so my son can go to school functions such as football games and dances? For a reduced fee of course.

I would like to know just what the heck my Oregon Lottery dollars are paying for exactly?

When I was in high school it never occurred to me to think about why it seemed that only the "rich kids" played sports, or participated in after school activities. But I now know why. Kids from low income families couldn't afford it. Now I know why it was a big deal when I finally got to go to a dance or a game.

It's said that participating in extracurricular activities strengthens a student's sense of pride in themselves, and makes them into better people. Gee, has anyone ever wondered why some of these kids from lower income families grow into adults with low incomes? Why the system that has been created and is being practiced is the same system that holds them (the kids) back and makes a kid feel like a second class citizen just because their parents can't afford to pay the price so they can play football or soccer and maybe learn some self esteem? (Which is the often spouted reason for getting your kid involved in sports in the first place.)

My husband is from the Midwest and went to school there. His mother (who is also a school teacher) was shocked that our kids had to "pay to play". Out there, its paid for by the tax dollars. Everyone, whether you had a kid or not, paid a small tax toward whichever school district you lived in. (incidentally, if you were a housing renter, you also got to deduct a percentage of your yearly rent when filing your taxes. I thought that kind evened it out a bit.) But no one has to pay a fee to play a sport or be a cheerleader or whatever. There is no charge to go to your own school dance. Not even prom. But not here.

So, I end this missive with a plea to whoever makes the rules. Change them, or I and my husband are going to have to start selling our plasma to be able to afford for our son to enjoy his high school years and maybe be able to play a few sports and dance a few dances now and then.


Not a Parent of a "Rich Kid"

Sunday, August 27, 2006

What to do, what to do...

How long since you've been really bored? Nowadays, people seem to believe that there is an inalienable right to NOT be bored. We have television, radio, computers, video, tapes, CD's, movies, cell phones, digital cams, and DVD. Heaven forbid that anyone should ever spend any time being bored.

Remember when it was actually possible to spend a boring afternoon? We were forced to find creative ways to entertain ourselves, things like reading books, doing crafts, or just daydreaming. No more. We cannot stand to be bored long enough to dream or think creatively. We rush to push buttons before boredom sets in.

When I was young, life was pretty boring, but somehow we managed to grow up anyhow. If school was not interesting, we learned to challenge ourselves. Nowadays kids must be entertained to learn. Computers provide constant feedback and stimulate learning - or at least that's what we are told.

Somehow, our gadgets are not quite as entertaining as they used to be though. Hundreds of channels on the satellite and still we can't find anything on television worth watching. Thousands of websites, but we surf aimlessly from one site to another.We have also become multi-taskers, eating, watching TV. working on the computer, and talking on the cell phone all at the same time. The more stimulation we have, the more we seem to need. It keeps us from being bored.

Could it be that we have become so overly stimulated that nothing truly entertains us any more? We are always looking for something better, something more interesting, something more exciting - something less boring.

"I'm bored," is not heard often anymore. And if it is, we seem to think it is our responsibility as parents, teachers, or society as a whole to provide ways to keep people from being bored. Bored children get in trouble, we are told. You have to keep kids busy, entertained. That’s hard to do when keeping busy itself has become a bore.

There is too much to see, too much to do, too much to entertain us, too much competition for our time and attention. There is no time to watch a sunset, go for a walk, feed the birds, or rediscover the thoughts, meditations and dreams of our own mind. That's BORING!

We are filled with the voices, thoughts and words of other people, with values different from our own. The more we absorb, the more alike we all become, and the blander, more uniform and more boring life becomes.

Soon nothing will be stimulating enough to keep boredom away. We will sit among our electronic gadgets, surfing from channel to channel on the television, pushing button after button on the remote control, clicking from site to site on the computer, reading email after email as we look for a something we've not seen or heard a hundred times before.

Strange how our minds never died from boredom in the past. Is it really so likely that they will now? Nothing is entertaining enough. Nothing is worth our time. We seek more and more of the very thing that is causing our demise. We are stuck in information overload.

Perhaps it is time sit back and just do nothing for a while. Perhaps we need to take a little time to clear our minds and just be bored. Maybe, just maybe, a little old-fashioned boredom is not such a bad thing.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

I hate Home Depot

In case you've missed me, I've been lost at a big box hardware store for three days. Why do they make those stores so big? I know they need a lot of room for their lumber, lawnmowers, and ceiling fans, but a body could go in one of those stores and never find their way out.

I needed a package of screws. Screws, a two-dollar item! To find screws I had to go through aisles and aisles of more stuff than you will ever need in your lifetime. I didn't know what some of it even was, much less what it might be used for.

This was not my usual hardware store. I go to another store because it is closer to my home. But I was right next door to it anyhow doing another errand. It seemed silly not to go in and get the screws while I was there.

I decided to go in through the garden center entrance since it was close and the front door was three miles in the hazy distance. After wading through acres of petunias, begonias and assorted bedding plants, I finally came to the real door, the one that goes inside the store. I felt like I was on a jungle safari and was starting to anticipate monkeys.

How on God's green earth are we expected to find anything in that giant-size toolbox of nuts and bolts? I'm spoiled by the Internet where you just type it into the search engine and go straight to where you want to be. I needed a Global Positioning System to zoom in on the screws.

After a quick surveillance of the area, I knew it was totally hopeless. I would have to ask someone. The problem is that asking someone meant finding someone to ask. The friendly orange vests suddenly all disappear when you need them. Ithink they don't know where anything is either and would rather not be asked.

After dodging a 20 foot stack of boxes on wheels being pushed down the aisle by an invisible person, I finally cornered an orange vest long enough to get directions. I didn't understand the directions, but I got them. "Turn by the lawn mowers and cut though the paint, and hardware will be right there."

I'm sure there must be people who turn by the lawnmowers, cut though the paint and are never seen again. When you file my missing person report, just say, "last seen in hardware store looking for screws."

I finally, at last, found the right area, and then it was a matter of finding the right item. There are hundreds of screws... millions of screws... long screws, short screws, fat screws, skinny screws, wood screws, metal screws, Phillips screws, slotted screws, concrete screws, stud screws, and screws for which no name has yet been invented and probably never will be.

I needed four screws. I finally found a package with a dozen, plus some mysterious plastic holders. At this point, I didn't care. I'd just wanted to buy screws and go home before I collapsed from fatigue.

Finding the front door took another two days and even then I had to tackle an orange-vested employee and put him in a strangle hold until he agreed to show me where it was. I crawled up to the row of cash registers and put my screws on the counter gasping."Is that all," inquired the clerk as she waved them across the scanner. Is that all? Is she kidding? It took me three days to find those screws!

I could only think of one other thing that I could possibly need - a search and rescue helicopter. You thought I was going to say a GPS, didn't you? Okay, I'll take one of those too if you will find it for me.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Runnin' off at the mouth today folks...

Today, I start my new job. Ugh. The one thing I would love to stop hearing is any comments like, "Well, you need to do something." Or, "I'm so happy for you. Now you have something to do all day." Why is it that people (whom I won't name, but I really, really want to) nowadays can't seem to get it through their thick heads that being a "homemaker", or "housewife", is work? Here is an example of my typical day:

6 am-ish: Wake up
Start the coffee
Put mail out in the box to be picked up, and start the watering of the yard/garden, weed a little on my way in and out of the house.
Feed the cats to get them to shut up.
Clean up at least two puddles and one pile from the pets, since they can't seem to hold it all night, or wake us up.
Let the dogs out.
Start a load of laundry while keeping one eye on Mazzy the escape artist through the window. Let dogs back in.
Drink one cup of coffee while folding the laundry I pulled out of the dryer, also while dodging three dogs that seem to multiply by four when I am trying to do something.
Put clothes away, while picking up dirty clothes from the day before to start another load.
Do last night's dishes.
Pull something out of the freezer for tonight's "Daily Special Dinner" that I always seem to be able to come up with.
Go out and move the hose to water another part of the yard.
Pull a couple more weeds on the way back in.
Put dishes away.
Change the slipcovers on the couch.
vacuum and rag mop the floors.
Wipe down counters in kitchen.
Wipe down everything in the bathroom because my husband and son get toothpaste everywhere. And I mean everywhere.
Put wet clothes in the dryer, and throw the dirty slipcovers in the wash.
Turn computer on to check email.
While waiting for that to boot up, I let the dogs out again, and check on my garden where I planted pumpkins, green beans (that I can into dilly beans) strawberries, raspberries, onions, potatoes, tomatoes and corn. Also right now we are picking blackberries from the back fence, apples from our four trees, and plums from our two trees, and I'm canning all of them in some way, shape or form.
Go back inside and check my email, at the same time randomly doing other things around the house. And sometime during the day I squeeze in a trip to the gym.
I think it might be close to noon now. Maybe I should feed myself.

Anyway, you get the picture. And on certain days, you can add grocery shopping, mowing the lawn, general yard work, and errand running onto the list. I'm not complaining. My husband works upwards of 50-55 hours a week. So I do the house stuff. I actually don't mind most of the time. And I know that if I want a "day off" I can take it, without worrying that I'll be fired. But I also know that if I don't do the work, it will be there for me tomorrow.

Oh, but now I'm gonna be "working" three days a week. And still doing all the things I do every day anyway. Because unfortunately, housework and taking care of your family doesn't pay the bills. Although, now that I'm thinking about it, I think that there should be some kind of tax break for middle income families, who are not on any kind of welfare assistance, who has one parent staying at home. You know, in lieu of getting a paycheck. The government or whomever is forever yapping about family values, and the like, so why not. I know that my son is much better off with a parent at home to make sure that the homework and chores get done. And I definitely know that he is a happier kid just knowing that one of us is going to be there when he gets home from school.

But also unfortunately, life's not going to be like that. Because while the big-wigs, CEO's and the like are getting pay increases upwards of 100% a year so they can pay their nannies and private school fees; normal people like us have to have two incomes just to keep the size 15 shoes on our kid's feet while they hop the bus to public school. And for the single parents who are trying to make a living wage all by themselves? Whew! God help them.

And the fact that federal minimum wage hasn't budged in almost ten years!?! $5.15 an hour. Mmm...I hope that all the overpaid head honchos out there, think about the fact that the triple-non-fat-mocha-latte you just bought from the Starbucks dude, is equal to about an hour of time in his life. Something to think about. I also just thought about the fact that it is going to take me about 14 hours of my life to pay for one pair of my kid's shoes this year. Crap.

Ok, sorry about that, I had to get that out of the way. So now I guess I am going to leave you with this. I am grateful that I found this job. It is the amount of hours I wanted (but only cuz I had to) and very close to home. And it will help tremendously in the long run. And now a note to the government that controls wages, cost of living and the like: Now three days a week, my family will no longer be sitting down to dinner together. Not exactly the message I've been hearing lately but we tried for almost two years to make this house a better family environment for my son. And we just couldn't do it. Such is life.

*shoe calculation: minimum wage in Oregon is $7.50/hr

Tuesday, August 15, 2006


You Should Weigh 136
If you weigh less than this, you either have a fast metabolism or are about to gain weight.If you weigh more than this, you may be losing a few pounds soon!
How Much Do You Weigh?


My best friend is a Sagittarius, so this I thought would be a little enlightening. But, I think maybe, just maybe, it's just a little creepy...

You are 60% Sagittarius

Monday, August 14, 2006

Ah, what to do, what to do. It is once again football season. It's a wonderful time of year. Even for a Minnesota Vikings fan such as myself.

Yes, I admit it. My name is Kimberly and I am a Vikes fan. No, they have never won a Superbowl. Ever. But I can't help it. It's in the blood. I bleed purple.

I was born 0.65 miles from where the Metrodome was later built. It was destiny for me to forever hate the cheesehead Packers. I am powerless.

So this post I suppose is not much. Just a big SKOL VIKES!

Monday, August 07, 2006

You Saw Her What?!

The night before the big shin-dig at the relatives house in Laporte, Indiana the family went out to dinner. By "the family" I mean the hubby's papa, mama, sis, her two babies, me, the hubster, my son, the brother-in-law, and his two friends. It was interesting to say the least.

But the most interesting part I have to say was not the food. It was not the immediate company. It was the woman seated kitty-corner to us at her own table. She had two other people with her, but you wouldn't know it by the conversation. She was the only person talking. And that my friends is the lead in, to how my husband and his brother inadvertently blew ice tea out of their noses simutaniously at each other. Unplanned, I might add.

Act I: Scene I

(Large, thick necked woman seated at table with her son(?) and another woman. She is wearing the paper bib that comes with the all-you-can-eat-ribs)

"I have to be careful, don't you know," she said in a sugary Southern accent, while stroking a meaty hand down her polyester, flower printed shirt, "I don't want to get anything on my blouse, since I am wearing this to church tomorrow."

(Meanwhile, she is waving a rib as she talks, not to mention spitting BBQ sauce on her friend she is eating with. I guess her friend is going to have to change her shirt for church the next day.)

The following is what caused what is now known as: "The Ice-Tea Blow Out".

Please try continue to imagine this said with a sweet as sugar southern accent. I'm not sure why it's southern since we were about as far North as you can get in Indiana, but whatever.

While continuing to use a saucy rib as a point maker, the rib eater says to her companions, "Speaking of church, did you see Lilah at the services last week?" Her friends shake their heads "no". They can't speak because they are trying to eat their own fill of ribs that are on the table before she does.

She takes a deep breath. And I mean a deep breath. It must of been really deep because she never paused as she said, "Well...She-was-wearing-the-shortest, and-I-mean-the-shortest-skirt, if-you-can-call-it-a-skirt-ever!" Another deep breath here. She almost inhaled her paper bib, I swear. "Why, when-she-bent-over-to-pick-up-her-bible-when-it fell, and-I-think-it-"fell"-on-purpose-you-know, well...YOU COULD SEE HER HOO HOO! And-it-wasn't-just-me-little-JimmyDan-saw-it-too! He-wouldn't-admit it,-but-I-know, because-he-turned-beet-red, and-when-I-asked-him-what-was-wrong, he-just-ran-to-the-restroom."

And that my friends is what caused iced tea to spring forth from the noses of my husband and my brother-in-law simutaniously in Laporte, Indiana. Let it be a lesson to you if you're not into showing off your "hoo hoo", don't bend over in church while wearing a short skirt.

Saturday, August 05, 2006


I took this picture with my phone in Dallas on the way home from Indiana. I just couldn't resist. Mostly because it reminds me of my husband. Those of you who know us will understand. Hee hee.

Friday, August 04, 2006

Back From The Wilds of Indiana

Oh boy, what a vacation! We are obviously back and still breathing. And although I have tons of stories, including a little advice on how to sneak 39 ears(that's 3 bakers dozen) of Indiana Sweet corn through redneck customs in a cheap Walmart duffel bag (it's contraband, didn't you know? LOL) I want to start off with an excerpt from the 'sheriff's Log' of the local newspaper of Brown County, Indiana. My husband took me to Nashville, Indiana for my birthday. Yeah, you read that right. But that's another story altogether. Hee hee.

So in the mean time, enjoy the following that we read over breakfast the other day. And yes, it was hard to keep the coffee from jetting out of my nose on some of these.

July 24:
2 a.m. Report of tree down on Old Haggard Road.
10:44 a.m. 911 caller says that there are three or four males being loud at the family camp ground.
7:42 p.m. Caller reports breaking and entering with property damage that occurred approximately two days ago.
July 25:
12:49 p.m. Report of theft on Muscat Drive.
8:39 p.m. Caller reports a tree just fell inside the park.
July 26:
2:05 a.m. Report of fire in the bathroom wastepaper basket at the Circle K.
10:59 a.m. Pine Ridge Road resident reports that their two spotted donkeys are missing.
3:38 p.m. Caller from Green Valley Road reports two spotted donkeys in her front yard.
4:37 p.m. Caller from Deckard Road says a neighbor just made an improper gesture with a finger towards him and wants it logged.
7:01 p.m. Cell phone caller reports a cow walking down the middle of Horse Shoe Road.
July 27:
12:11 p.m. Caller says he lost his day planner at Dr. Brester's, but was advised that no report was necessary, he just needs to start canceling his credit cards.
July 28:

No report.
July 29:
No report.
July 30:
11:35 a.m. 911 caller reports a person with a bloody hand on Owl Creek Road with a bloody hand, scaring bicycle riders.
6:09 p.m. Caller from Brown Hill Road needs an officer to meet with him just in case his bike gets stolen, he wants them to know what kind it is.
9:39 p.m. 911 caller from a payphone says his ex just tried to hit his girlfriend with a crowbar.

I swear that this is word for word, I tore the section out of the paper and stuffed it in my purse. I couldn't make this stuff up. And the sad part is, I would love to open my local newspaper everyday and read stuff like this. It's better than what I read now.

Another good start to that day was the waitress who served our food that morning was just glowing like a peach. Her two two daughters had a big day the night before. One who was the previous years reigning Miss Brown County Queen of the Corn (or something like that) got to crown her sister who won it also. Very cool I thought. Just a good start to the day. I'll write more about the interesting stuff that went on during the vacation later. Have fun.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Leavin' Onnn A Jet Plane, na, na, na, na, na, .........

Well, here I sit. It's 8:50 am and I have already mowed my lawn, drove over to a friends, mowed their lawn, and folded two loads of laundry. Ugh. And all because I wanted to get stuff done before it gets too hot. And the list ain't done yet. Oh well.

The trip went ok. We went to the coast and a casino. We valet parked for the first time in our lives. Which is hilarious, because he parked it something like 50 ft from the door. I felt kinda bad watching him "run" to get the truck, since it looked as if he has been alive about 45 years longer than us, but I guess that might be why he parked it so close, huh? So it took us longer to figure out how to use our VIP players cards, than to lose all our gambling money at blackjack. Those are the breaks I guess.

The most fun I had was walking through Old Town Florence. Walking through the shops I mean. Neither of us had really been able to do that before. Me, because of my husband. All he ever wants is food and a beer. And she because of her son. Think "bull in a china shop" and you figured that one out. We saw some very cool stuff; a painting that I would of paid a million dollars for if I actually had a million dollars, some chain saw carvings, and wonderful jewelry made by local people. In fact Sonja bought me a gorgeous necklace for a birthday present that made my husband think, "Great, now I gotta top that." Which is not necessarily a bad thing.

Nothing real eventful happened. I guess it must be our advancing years, but our crazy trips just aren't as crazy as they used to be. Or it could be just me, because on the way back to her house, Sonja encountered something that I am glad I missed. *cue the "Stand By Me" music: She got to see a dead body. Well, actually she sees them all the time since she's a paramedic/firefighter/something-or-other, but I don't and I'm glad I didn't.

While driving home, a woman flagged her down. The woman apparently was standing at the end of a very long driveway and didn't want the ambulance to miss the road, saw headlights, and figured it was the EMT's. Well, she got Sonja, so close enough. She was hysterical. Blubbering all over the place, her mom or something like that was hurt, please hurry, run, help, sob, sob, scream scream. Sonja get in the house, and has to tell the woman the bad news. "Uh, I'm sorry but she's dead. Uh, looks like she died oh, I don't know, maybe ten hours ago. This morning."

Or something like that. I am sorry that this woman died, but it should not of come as a very big shock. I think they said she was 94. The shocking part for me would of been finding my grandma naked in the tub. Dead or alive. I've been told by experts in the field (a.k.a. Sonja) that people in that condition feel like half thawed chicken. You know what? I'm going to take her word for it. I personally have no desire to touch a dead body. As much bravado that I might have, I for one am actually, completely full of shit when it somes to that kinda stuff.

A million years ago I stopped at an accident and the guy's arm was almost completely severed. Every one thought I was using my shirt to stop the blood or something else useful, but in all truth, I was just trying to cover up the icky stuff so I wouldn't have to look at it. Yeah the bitter truth.

So anyway, tomorrow me, the kid and the husband are flying to Indiana to see his family. He hasn't seen them in over three years so I guess he's due. We'll be gone for nine long days, my sister is going to house/dog/cat/plant sit, God help her. We have three large cats and three large dogs and a garden that I hope will be still alive when we get back. After I finish up here, I still need to make an extensive list that she requested for all the stuff that has to be done daily. I guess last time she forgot to feed the cats for like three days. Oops. Anyway, see ya around the 5th of August!

Oh yeah, and I'm only slightly worried about the
Indiana-Interstate-Sniper. Crap.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Da Da Da DAhhhh, Super-Kimberly!!!

I had to put this picture in. This is me about a thousand years, 130 dye jobs and 20 pounds ago. I do believe I was on a "trip" with Sonja at the time in her mom's Maverick. I recall we had no FM on the radio at the time, so we listened to a lot of weird shit on AM. And yes, my feet really are that big. Shut up.

So tomorrow is the big day. What day, you ask? The day when my best friend Sonja and I do something stupid for my birthday. There is actually two days a year we do this; her birthday (December) and mine. Tomorrow is not actually my birthday by the way, just in case anyone wants to wish me a good one. It's in a couple weeks, but I will be out of state at my husband's family reunion on my actual birthday. Whoop-ee! I sooo can't wait.

So anyway, when she mentioned going and doing something tomorrow I had thought she just meant lunch, but then she said, "you know, for your birthday." Oh yeahhhh, I had actually forgotten about it. The big Double Three. Dos Tres. (Look Sonja! Spanish! Aren't you proud?) Anyway, this should be interesting.

Looking back on birthday expeditions. Yes, I use the word expedition because that is what this is. A search for something. What, we are not sure, but we know it when we find it. Then the expedition turns into a trip.

Which then turns into a holiday, then you name it, that's what we can call it: errand (to pick up our youth where we left off), excursion (a brief trip to insanity), flight (from whatever is chasing us, hopefully not a cougar this time...), hop (used to, can't anymore; too old), jaunt (makes me think of some weird British guy walking up a hill with a cane and a spring in his step), outing (of our minds), drive (which way, left or right? Flip a coin.), ride (white knuckled usually, screaming also but in a fun way, watch those dang corners!), spin (done that too, almost threw up); odyssey (that might be the name for it this year), progress (God, I hope so.), quest (for inner youth? Or just the perfect margarita?), safari (Now wouldn't that be cool?)

Anyway, I told my husband that Sonja and I are taking off tomorrow for the bi-annual birthday foray thing. Not even looking up from his paper, he just said "Ok." Hmm? Usually he is way more curious than that. Quizzing me about what we are going to do, this and that. I guess he's learned the hard way. We never know what we are going to do until we do it. It's more fun that way. Plus, it might be because the last time he asked us how our trip was when we got back, I think we just started laughing like idiots. We never did give him a straight answer.

Wish us luck and fun in our adventure, and I'll let you know if we need bail money. Ta ta for now...