Friday, July 31, 2009


I am glad everybody is here, cause without everybody, we would have no comments, and I think everybody would be sad over everybody not being here and not commenting. If I was not here to monitor the blog everybody would miss me, and I would miss me to, cause everybody needs to have a blog to comment on, so everybody can be happy, and surly everybody should be happy, so everybody will be here to comment, and then everybody will definitely be happy.

It seems everybody in my family is glad I am around, cause thru out the day everybody calls me and tells me what everybody is doing. Sometimes I think "do I really care'? But then I would probably be upset if everybody did not call me, because then I would not know what everybody was doing, and that would just make me call everybody and ask them what they are doing.

Everybody at work is always asking me questions. At times I feel like a answer person, since everybody is asking me something, I surely have to answer everybody. It would be nice if everybody would not ask me questions
thru out the day, because then I don't have to be the answer person and constantly answer everybody. But then if everybody does not ask me questions, I would think that everybody is mad at me, and then I would
have to ask everybody to ask me a question.

So from this blog, it is evident that even tho I might not think it at times, I need everybody, and am glad that everybody needs me. Without everybody I would have nothing, and who wants nothing when I can have everybody.

Not I!


Thursday, July 30, 2009

A-HOLES OR B-HOLES you choose

by Lynnd

Ok I came across this article on Huffington Post and it is not what you think it is. This subject is part of a commercial for Hardy’s restaurants. They made a commercial asking customers to help name their new product Biscuit Holes. Here are some of the excerpts from the article I read:

The Rocky Mount company that is Hardee's largest franchisee is angry about TV ads for the fast-food chain's new Biscuit Holes.

Boddie-Noell Enterprises, which owns nearly 350 Hardee's, is refusing to run the ads, which also are drawing fire from the Parents Television Council.

The ads ask customers to help name the sweet treats, and offer suggestions such as "iced B-holes." In one ad, customers doing taste tests are asked to choose between the "A-holes" and the "B-holes."

And more:

When there are "differences of opinion" like this, CKE provides alternative ads for Boddie-Noell to run in this market, Rountree added.

CKE is running the ads in select markets only after 9 p.m. and has no plans to drop the ads, said spokeswoman Jenna Petroff.

The ads are aimed at Hardee's "target audience of Young, Hungry Guys," she said in a prepared statement. "We do not aim to exclude or offend any other group with our efforts, but merely to appeal and amuse a very specific audience."

So yeah they are in questionable taste, the ads not the biscuit holes, but come on these are funny and memorable. In advertising you would think that would be a winning combination!

What do you think?

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

First Impressions

by Bonacci

We recently had a very serious day at the nest that involved impressions and judgments. I thought it would be fun to share our impressions of each other. I’ve not seen most of you, so my impressions are based either on my interpretation of your online presence, or something you’ve done that stuck in my head.

Iteach: A small energetic woman. Always zipping around. Curious about the world and eager to experience it. Maybe a brunette with shoulder-length hair and long bangs.

Whab: I’ve seen Whab in the old chat, but it’s not what I see in my mind. He looks sweet in chat and I love his deep voice. I’m not saying he isn’t sweet, but I don’t see sweetness in my mental pic. A very masculine face with chiseled features. Hair about the same, maybe a mustache. Tall and muscular. Eyes that see everything.

Carol: Again, seen a pic but it’s not the same. Mentally, she’s a handsome woman. Like Markie Post but taller. (The actual pic makes me think more “pretty” like Susan Lucci.) Regal and commanding. People pay attention to her. Holding a Dunkin’ Donuts coffee in one hand, a flip cam in the other.

Kgrl: Pixie-like. Dark hair, maybe chin length. Slim build but muscular enough to handle some serious horsepower. Attractive but men are intimidated by her independence. Doesn’t take crap from anyone. Maybe in her early 30’s. Just a flash of The Terminator because of her back.

Mary/MI; A tiny little package bouncing all over the place. Long, dark, shiny hair. High Latina cheekbones. Always a big smile and bursting with light.

Mo: I’m so sorry! I can’t push that little pink piggy avatar out of my head! Full of practical jokes and devious enough to pull them off. Very short because well, she’s a little pink piggy with a curly tail.

DeeDee: Funny as Hell. Short dark, wavy hair, like she used a big round brush to blowdry. You can tell from her face that the gears are spinning inside her head, plotting her next devious prank. A red feather boa, sitting on a round bed while holding a phone.

Tina: I see two Tinas. She’s Eunice, the Valentine’s Day Eunice. The other Tina is a cheerleader. All-American, girl next door. She’s a mom now, so she’s cheering for her family. Zips around town in a minivan. Cute, little and spunky. She carries pom-poms.

Dianne/Denver: A ski bunny. Not sure on age, but definitely not a grandmother. Maybe a mother. Long, white-blonde hair and very white teeth. Can’t see her face well because she’s wearing ski goggles. Carrying whatever those pointy sticks are called.

Joey: Mid-20’s. Brown hair with highlights that he wears with just a little gel to give it a tousled look. The body of a tennis player. Girls want him because he is handsome and so sweet. He breaks their hearts because he tells them the truth, but they still love him.

Just_Lin: Some Asian-ish descent, long shiny black hair. Very pretty with amazing bone structure. Somewhere between 5’1” and 5’6”. Age between 25-35.

Zona: A sweet brown doggie who sometimes masquerades as Hugh Grant. Another owl’s daughter.

Bebbi: A fireball. Always walking, always spunky. Long blond hair she wears in a bouncy ponytail. Sparkly eyes and a visor cap.

LynnD: A toddler who for some reason, is always playing in the pool comes to mind. I don’t think this is her, but it’s what pops into my head.

Goldie: I think her avatar is her. A strong woman who can handle anything that comes her way. Loyal.

Shirley: Please do not boil me in oil for this. A chicken marching with determination around a house. It doesn’t matter that she’s missing some feathers. She’s marching and nothing will stop her. If it helps at all, the chicken is tall and thin. And really good at math. (This impression came to me when she was doing those long funny marches.)

Jodi: A British appearance, with a Queen-like handbag and a flowered hat. For some reason, I see her sipping a mint julep at the Kentucky Derby. Tall, thin and regal, with a long neck and shiny brown hair she wears swept up atop her head.

MEK: An archaeologist who looks very much like Laura Dern in Jurassic Park. Very tolerant of both people and her environment.

So that’s who these people are to me. Inside. Their actual appearance wouldn’t change the way I think of them. Well, it probably would with Zona, Shirley and Mo because they can’t possibly be a dog, a chicken and a pig if they’re blogging regularly. If I happened to describe you, is that how you see yourself? Are you surprised?

Tuesday, July 28, 2009


by EBJ

I got this video from a friend and thought it would be great to post as a blog It is really touching, and sad, and eye-opening.

The family at the end will make you get teary-eyed.

Monday, July 27, 2009


by Lynnd

That saying means so much. I understand why you would not yell that in a crowded theater and why it is used when you may be getting attacked both practical practices in my mind. When your husband yells it through your backdoor on a day when your back 4 acres has just been mowed and is in the process of being baled for hay it may cause a little panic!

When this happened to me the other day I have to admit I went into a low level of panic after I confirmed that yes indeed we did have a fire going in the back of our property in a year when everything is tinder dry. I suddenly felt like I was in an “I love Lucy” rerun and I was Lucy.

I immediately ran for the phone to call 911 I reached for that baby like it was a lifeline and then it dawned on me the damn thing is one of the new wonderful cordless phones that don’t freaking work when the power is out!!! Did I mention the cable and power were out? (See my post on July 23rd) after thinking oh fuck, I remembered I had an old stand by phone that I have saved for just such an occasion and it was sitting in the bookcase very close. I ran across the room grabbed it and hurriedly plugged it in. Dial tone, Thank Heavens! I dial 911 CRAAAAAP it won’t go through, I keep getting a high pitched beep instead. I slam the phone down panic rising by the moment. It finally dons on me (I know some of you were already thinking this, Shut up Tina) grab your damn cell phone!! Yep I finally remembered I have a cell phone for emergencies and this was one heck of one. I have it in my grasp and punch in 911, damn why isn’t it ringing. Hello stupid you have to punch call!!! Finally it is ringing. What do I hear? “All Circuits Are Busy At This Time” WTF!!!!!

I close the phone going into full panic mode now and the landline phone rings. I race across the room again and run into the wall trying to get to the damn thing. I right myself and grab it like a life preserver being thrown off a boat. I answer and I hear. “Hello this is 911 we received a hang up 911 call from this number”. I immediately respond with “Yes you did it was me and my property is on fire!!!!! They ask “Where is your property?” I gather my wits enough to give them the location and then they ask “Do you know how the fire started?” My brain goes into WTF again and I respond “NO and I really don’t care right now as MY FIELD IS ON FIRE!” Good lord do I have to do all the work for them? They finally realize I am on the verge and say they will send someone right away.

Mr. Lynn D pokes his head in the door and asks if I had called 911? I tell him Yes! “Then where are the fire trucks?” Ok I have to say at this point I am about to lose it!! I yell at him “how the hell do I know?” “Maybe it’s a slow day for the one operator at the damn one horse phone company we have!” He retreats out the door. I grab my cell phone and head outside while trying to keep the dogs inside. I think they realize I am on the edge and cooperate for once.

I finally get outside and smoke is billowing and you can see flames jumping. In all of this it finally dawns on me the guy baling our hay is still baling away! I keep thinking does he know the field is on fire??? Yep he knows hubby runs back to tell me Al is digging a trench on our side of the fence to try to create a break to stop the fire. He has a front loader on that baler and is going to town! Finally we hear sirens wailing away in the distance and 3 fire trucks arrive above our property on the state highway that runs to the back. Thank God! They are spraying foam and water like crazy! Seems that the wire supporting the power pole snapped and being under pressure it flew up and hit the power lines that caused sparking, hence the fire and also knocked out the power, cable and all.

The whole neighborhood is out watching and hoping that they knock it down fast. Cars are backed up on the state highway both directions. Thanks to Al the baling guy and the fire fighters they stop it before it can spread onto our property and the neighbors next door. Yay!!!!!

What I learned from all of this is that I am not as unflappable as I thought! I have always been someone who stayed calm in a crisis and then fell apart, but for some reason age, peri menopause, not doing Pilates, who knows? I went into panic mode and then was finally laughing by the time it was all over. Oh and Al he just continued to bale the hay after the fire fighters arrived. He is about eighty and I guess at that age nothing seems too dire and should never interfere with doing your job. I think he may have already been through menopause.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

The Song ♪♪Africa♪♪

Chosen by EBJ

This fun YouTube video features a 1980s pop classic. The rock band Toto scored their biggest hit with Africa in 1982. The song is instantly recognizable. But it has been reinvented.

Perpetuum Jazzile is an a cappella jazz choir from Slovenia. It’s hard to think of something further from an ‘80s rock band. But their version of Africa may best the original. The group has amazing voices.

But the beginning of this video is really striking. Group members simulate an African thunderstorm with their hands. It’s really something to see and hear.

Saturday, July 25, 2009


by Iteach

Recently I went out to eat with my co-workers at a wonderful Italian restaurant. This place is known for its delicious buffet. Tons of pizza, all kinds of pastas, different types of bread, and yummy dessert. It is a wonderful experience for your taste buds. Unfortunately on that day when we went I was on diet #826, so I had a nice salad.

Now eating the salad did not make me sad at all, it was my friends who chose the buffet that made me sad. They went up to the mouth watering buffet and they all came back with a little slice of pizza, a tablespoon of pasta, and a little piece of bread. I just couldn't believe it! God created buffets to fill up the whole plate at LEAST twice with luscious food not just 3/4 of a plate. I felt so sorry for the buffet.

Now I know what you are thinking. Due to the fact that I treat the buffet with respect is the reason why I'm on diet #826. Yes, there could be some truth to that, I won't deny it. My thoughts are either do the buffet right or just order something else.

I wondered if my co-workers would have filled there plates different, if they were not with their peers? If they were with their husband or children would they have filled their plates? Do they hold back because they are worried what people are thinking? Or do they have excellent control?

I have recognized that I have no control when it comes to buffets not even when I was a skinny minnie. Boy do I love food!!! Thank goodness we will always have Shirley' buffets. They are perfect for every type of eater.

Friday, July 24, 2009

~ Pie-n-Beer Day ~

by Tina~in_ut

Last year I told you about Pioneer Day. It's a state holiday celebrated mostly by Mormons as the day they came to the state of Utah to settle and to also base their religion here. Well, last Sunday at church, the priest was making some announcements at the end of mass and invited everyone to get together Friday night for Pie-n-Beer Day. I couldn't help but laugh with everyone else.

This particular church is across the street from the university and quite a few students come to the 7pm mass even during the summer. Fr. Peter likes to have dinners after mass for people to get together and get to know each other. We have stayed for these dinners a few times. I have never heard of Pie-n-Beer Day, though. There is a pizza place around the corner called The Pie and there will be beer for those over 21 and root beer for those who are not.

As I said last year, I try to be out of state on the 24th. This year, no such luck. We may have guests staying with us over the weekend. This may be the first time I celebrate the day. You can bet, though, that I'll be celebrating Pie-n-Beer Day instead~

Thursday, July 23, 2009


by Dianne_in_Denver

My granddaughter was here the other day and brought up one of my clowns from my collection downstairs. It got me thinking about how so many people dislike clowns. I know it has been mentioned on the blog before.

As a child, I was afraid of clowns, but then again, I was afraid of Santa Claus, too. When I grew up, I was no longer afraid of either of them.

I find it interesting that so many people think clowns are "creepy." We have aliens, the vampires from Twilight, and different things from movies of today, and no one seems to be bothered by them. Sooooooooooo, I was wondering if you non-clown people would tell me why you don't like them.

p.s. - I'm sure most of you are saying that if I am thinking about these things during the day, maybe I should get more of a life or read a book or something!!!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

~ Size Really Doesn't Matter ~

By Tina~in_ut, Dianne_in_Denver, and Maureen


When I got married, I weighed 121 lbs. I thought I was a little overweight. My tummy was a little pudgy. Hubby liked me the way I was, so I didn't do much about it. When I got pregnant the first time, I ate like there was no tomorrow. I got up to 153 lbs at my heaviest. It took me two years to lose the weight, but I think it was because of the stress of moving to another state and building a new house. When I got pregnant with the twins, I was 156 lbs at my heaviest. I was on bedrest for over 3 months, in the hospital for 3 weeks, and forced to eat tons of food daily. I'm not even joking about that. A nurse came to tell me that I wasn't eating enough for the kids and I needed to add snacks in between meals. I followed every meal with a maalox chaser. It was the only way I could get all the food in that they wanted me to eat!

After the twins were born, I had no muscle tone. I couldn't walk very far without getting tired. I was tired anyway after staying up with the kids all night long. And I was constantly hungry. I was 143 lbs after giving birth, but within a month, I was back to 156 lbs because I kept up my eating habits. The only problem was, since I was constantly on the go, the "stuff" I was putting in my mouth was junk food.

As the years went by, I stayed pretty constant at around 155 lbs. I was never one for exercise and my idea of fun was sitting down to read a book or scrapbook. I've always been all right with that because right after my first child was born, my hubby's great uncle took one look at me and said that I finally looked healthy to him. He said that he always thought I was too thin, especially since I am 5' 8". I think that was the first time I really accepted the fact that I didn't need to get back to my 121 lb self.

A couple of years ago, I noticed that my clothes weren't fitting like they used to. I really thought that hubby had shrunk my clothes in the dryer! (That would have been a mean feat since I don't let him touch the laundry!!!!!) I started weighing myself and "magically" I had gained over 10 lbs. Last December, I gained more. I didn't think anything about me had changed. I still ate the same and still didn't exercise. I still worked the same job......sitting all day long. The only thing I can think of now that may have caused the weight gain was the fact that I was upset about a couple of things in my life, and when I get upset, I eat junk. The funny thing was, I didn't care. Hubby, and even my father, commented on my weight gain....and not too nicely, I might add! Once, my dad made the mistake of commenting during "that time of the month!" Not a good thing to do to someone who is PMS'ing!!! He and my mom have been trying to get me to stop drinking my Diet Pepsi's as well, to no avail. I've always told them, I'm not ready and left it at that.

Six weeks ago, I came home from Denver with the flu. After day 2, I started to get that headache you get when coming off caffeine. I thought that maybe since I was already going through the pain of that, and a DP didn't sound good at all, that I would try to give it up. When I decided that, I thought maybe if I could do that, I could try eating right and exercising. I've lost 9 lbs since then. The important thing is, I'm doing it because I want to do it and not because someone is telling me to or shaming me into it. It's my decision and if I decide to stop, or I just give up, that's my decision as well. I'm happy with who I am. It shouldn't matter if I'm 100 lbs of funny or 200 lbs of funny!!!!


When I was a child, I was a normal active person. I was tall (5'10") and life moved along. I came from a big, not heavy, family so my height probably ate up the weight. As I married and had my first child, my weight "blossomed", so I did the normal diets, and then I had my second child and I "blossomed" again. Time marched on and my weight went up and down. I, like most people, always wanted and tried to lose weight and did the yo-yo thing.

I find that I am now at my highest weight. I have had a lot of health issues over the last few years. I have been on oxygen and had knee replacement and have always had leg issues from a car accident many years ago. As I get older and since I am not as healthy, it is hard to be an active person. If I try and walk far, I can't breathe, my knee/leg hurts and then my back hurts. It becomes a very vicious circle and it sounds like (and probably is) a lot of excuses. I can't exercise because of my problems and I need to exercise because of my problems.

I thought when I retired I would really lose weight without all those morning donuts, the daily lunch that we NEVER could miss, snacks in the afternoon and then dinner. I now sleep late, am not a snacker, and usually eat one meal a day. Now I will not say this is a healthy life-style, but I take in so many less calories and I have still gained weight. You would think, at the very least, that I would have stayed the same!!!

I don't hear many people very pleased about their size from my DIL at size 3 to larger sized people. I had to laugh today as MARY was saying what a young face I have and she thought I was younger than she is now. I am one year older, but explained to her that when you are heavy you usually don't have wrinkles at my age...double/triple chins maybe, but hell, no wrinkles. I am who I am: a fun, happy night owl.


My name is Maureen and some of you know me as a piggy girl! The truth of the matter is I AM a piggy girl! I am fat. Not chubby. Not pleasingly plump. Not pudgy. FAT. FAT. FAT. And I don't care. Love my fat. A wise owl told me once that it doesn't matter what I look like because she knows me from the inside...not from the outside. Sandie, I will always remember that! I was always fat. As a child, teen and adult. I was tormented as a kid. BUDDHA. FATSO. PIG. Even then I didn't care. I love food. I love the taste, the smells, the creativity that goes with cooking, the social aspects, the comfort of it. I also could hide behind the fat. I didn't have to take responsibility for things...they didn't happen due to anything I happened because I was fat.

When I met a gorgeous man, Bill, I was fat. I couldn't really understand why he wanted to be with me. But he did. Not long after we met, I wanted to lose weight. I wanted to be the best looking girlfriend I could be. I joined NutriSystem. One of the kindest and most loving things he ever said to me was that he hoped I wasn't doing it for him, as he loved me the way I was, but that I was doing it for me. I ended up losing 60 pounds going from a 16 to an 8...and we broke up! I think he was actually threatened by the attention I got.

I have been thin. A few times! Never skinny, but thin and rather sexy! Cute figure, cute clothes, good hair, great sense of humor...what more could anyone want? LOL!! I did enjoy the cat calls, the hoots, the hollas...the reflection in the mirror. But the love of food won out. I have owned clothes in every size...8, 10, 12, 14, 16, 18 and 20. I called them my thin, not as thin, not as fat, fat, oopsies, holy cow and oh shit sizes! I won't divulge my current size except to say it isn't a 20 nor is it an 8! I still have the 10's and up...maybe someday I will wear them again. Or maybe not!

When I became unemployed a couple of years ago, I was a 10/12. Then my savings thinned out and my waistline grew...and grew...and grew. I found I could eat cheaper if I ate unhealthy. A pound of bologna cost $2.99 and a loaf of bread was $.85...lunch and dinner for a week for under $4...YIPPEE! And it was mighty tasty. Then I got a job where I sit. All day...everyday. Even though I have given up the bologna (haven't had it since I went back to work) I still am FAT. I do eat better, but not good enough. And I don't seem to care. I seem to be content...fat. Not content with my life, but content with my fatness.

They say size doesn't matter...OH HELL TO THE YEAH it does!! But not regarding my current size...

Tuesday, July 21, 2009


this is how it started, simple words
4 all of u, trying to find my way
in the internet world, seeing if any
would respond, this way of writing
seemed easier 4 me, so i continued
on, learning and growing

i have come so far, made so many
friends, with these simple words
it seems everyone knew me, 2 my
surprise, some understood the meaning

at times i was cryptic, just to see who
would get it, as 4 me i was trying to
find the balance, 2 learn who these
strange ppl were, as the faces were
hidden, so the words were my balance

each day, i came to c who was among
the few, in hopes the words showed
who i am, what i was looking 4 when
i first began, i am not sure, i guess
everything has a beginning, and my
words were my beginning, i will say
this i was def searching for something
as we don't seek if we don't need

i had forgotten this way of writing, of
forming my words, but it seems many
did not, as this way of writing is poetry
to some, as turtle said "haiku" her memory
of my words so vivid, using her memory
i formed this blog, with the words
i so often used

it is 2 b assumed, as i wrote my words
u all wondered about me as well, as i
was just a pseudo "cpgem8" just as
cryptic as my words, many must have
wondered, is she real? that thought
never occurred to me, as i was me
real and true

time has a way of defining things, it
brings closure to guessing, there is no
more guessing, we are all real, we have
faces, and are words are what brings us
together, never stop the words 4 we
need them, it is our touch

happy blue

smiles and happiness always


Monday, July 20, 2009

The Laughter!

by Shirley

There is nothing like a child's laughter, it will certainly brighten anyone's day!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

~ Your Call ~

Chosen by Tina~in_ut

I hear this song on the radio all the time and I love it. It reminds me of my husband, my children, and even some of my friends. I think about how when I was born, I was destined to marry the man I married, have and raise the children I have, and meet and become friends with certain people along the way. I wanted to share this song with you.

And then I found the video! What a disappointment. It is nothing like I "picture" this song in my head. The singer seems to be obsessed with the girl and even stalkerish!!! This just won't do!!! So close your eyes and listen...don't watch! :D

Saturday, July 18, 2009

An Unlikely Pair....

An unlikely pair, as so it seems
but on second look, its the same
as we all need, the companionship,
the love, to be paired as friends,
love is the same, it completes us
no matter where its found

An unlikely pair, perhaps not!

Friday, July 17, 2009

~ When Did It Become Okay To Scream Obscenities in Public? ~

by Tina~in_ut

Over the holiday weekend, I went to WalMart to get a passport picture taken. I don't know what I was thinking!!! I usually go there late at night to avoid the crowds and here I was in the middle of the day with everyone and their brother! As I was nearing the entrance, there was a big truck with a man driving and a woman in the passenger seat facing the door and another car perpendicular to him with a man in it. I normally wouldn't have noticed them......I don't notice anything.....but one of them honked. I looked up to see the Truck man taking off his seat belt. Car man was kinda leaning out his window looking at the other man. Truck man started yelling and when I actually started paying attention, I realized he was cussing at the top of his lungs. I'm no prude (no laughing!), but there was no reason for it! There were children all around and I live in a very conservative area, so you know there were people around that were offended. Truck man went so far as to open his door and started to get out, all the while cussing like a madman! I thought at first that it was a racial thing. Truck man was white and Car man was either Mexican or Asian (I couldn't get a good look at him, okay?!!). Then I noticed Truck wife. She was Polynesian. Whatever the problem was, I just couldn't believe it was bad enough to warrant what I and many others were hearing.

Two days later, I went to the grocery store after work. I park at the end of the parking lot so my beautiful new car won't get a scratch on it! Sitting under a tree at the end of the next row was a strange man. Well, he wasn't actually strange. I just thought it was strange that he was way out there sitting in a parking lot on such a hot day. I went in and did my shopping and when I came out, I heard some man screaming at the top of his lungs. It was like deja vu! I looked over by the street and there was my strange guy yelling into his phone and cussing just like Truck man. This guy seemed to be furious and was really scary. He hung up his phone and I got the heck outta there.

What I'd like to know is, when did it become okay to scream obscenities in public? I like the occasional cuss word on the blog or with my co-workers or even in the car with a friend in Denver~ What these people were doing was rude and offensive. It's sad really~

Thursday, July 16, 2009


by Bonacci

I keep getting stuck. Not in the metaphorical sense, but in the physical, “If-I-move-I-am-going-to-die” sense. It is a shooting pain through my back and down my leg. I have become stuck at the most inopportune times, the most recent being whilst putting dog food in the fridge, directly in the path of the Cold Blast. Great, I thought. I’m going to die of hypothermia, standing here in front of the open refrigerator. The coroner will list the cause of death as idiocy.

This is not supposed to happen to me. I am healthy and active. Injuries are a side effect of the lifestyle I have chosen and I happily accept the price of that lifestyle. I don’t know what I could have done to my back, though. I haven’t lifted anything heavier than Ernie the Chihuahua and Elmo the Poodle in the past week. I am in truth, not dying because dying isn’t supposed to hurt. Plus, when my ass and leg is not on fire, I find it mildly entertaining.

I have not told my husband about this. He just thinks I’ve absolutely lost my mind because of all the cover stories I’ve made up when I become stuck. He has caught me checking the carpet and pondering a refrigerator, empty of anything except the can of Alpo that was caught in my death grip. There have been a lot of complicated mathematical problems I’ve been solving in the midst of some routine movement that has paralyzed me. My eccentric personality is finally an asset, as he wonders if I am just trying to get a reaction out of him with my recent stop-animation movement.

The reality is that my body is simply a machine. Machines require maintenance and care. At some point, you either have to replace original parts or lose functionality. As an engineer I know that once you start swapping out parts, the integrity of any machine will be compromised. I am determined to preserve the integrity of this machine I call, ”Me”.

I am not a high-performance sports car. I am a demolition derby car that always seems to be running, maybe just barely, at the end of the day. I was built well and my design is sound. I have scars and dents that are badges of honor I wear proudly. I may not operate at peak efficiency all the time and I may back-fire, but I will always be there, giving all I’ve got. You can hammer out the dents that impede performance and weld me back together when I need it. Leave the foundation alone though, because that is what makes me, "Me". That's all I was ever meant to be.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Our Money Pit

by Caryn

We've been here about 2 months and are finally getting things in place to do the badly needed repair and maintenance work on our “new” 84 year old house. Next month someone is coming to install piers and replace old beams under the house so I won't be sitting sideways while I type on the computer and we won’t have to crawl uphill to get off the sofa anymore.

Much of the electrical wiring needs to be upgraded and we need to consolidate three breaker boxes (two are piggy-backed off of the main one) and get the house properly grounded. It's a wonder my mother-in-law never had a fire in here! In her bedroom she had 3 very old extension cords daisy-chained from one side of the room to the other so she could have a lamp next to her bed. The dishwasher had an old lamp cord wired to it with a hole cut on top of the counter so it could be plugged into the wall outlet. We didn't see that until we moved the microwave that her boys bought her back in the day when microwaves were first sold for personal use. There is no main cutoff for the electricity - yikes! Shortly after we arrived, there was a thunderstorm and I watched the lights on the ceiling fan glow with each lightning strike ... and the ceiling fan was turned off! And there's a breaker that bounces when we use our microwave and won't completely trip, which is disturbing.

The doors don’t close properly and windows have terrible wood rot. There are cracks all over the house that are an open invitation to creepy crawly things from outside, and Oklahoma has a LOT of creepy crawly things!

We had to wait to start this work because we didn't want to put a lot money into the house before we got a clear deed, although we did get the kitchen outlets replaced and the dishwasher wired properly. Soon, the real work can begin. Correcting the foundation problems, bringing the electrical system up to code, replacing the heating and window a/c units with a geothermal system, putting in ductwork for that, insulating, installing thermal doors and windows, repairing the driveway that looks like a jackhammer has been taken to it … these are all on the “to do” list before winter hits.

We have to let the professionals take care of these things before we can start on the do-it-yourself cosmetic projects. The fun stuff will probably have to wait until next spring. We don’t know the condition of the drywall because the entire house has wood paneling, with the exception of the kitchen and two bathrooms. So we may be replacing drywall as well. There are lovely hardwood floors under the very old gold carpeting in the front of the house that I’m looking forward to refinishing.

My mother-in-law was widowed when my husband was just an infant and she bought this house with insurance proceeds. She eventually put herself through beauty school and built a beauty shop onto the house so she could be home with her three young sons while still being able to support herself. In one of the bedrooms you can still see the pipes where the shampoo bowls once stood. The front porch is enclosed and was once the space where clients sat under the old chair dryers.

There are lot of inconveniences we’re living with and will continue living with for awhile. It will cost a bit to get things in order, but this is our home. It’s the first place my husband and I have owned since we got married 11 years ago. It’s the place where my husband grew up…so many memories in these walls. From the first time my husband brought me here, I felt there was something special about this house. Now it’s a place our children and grandchildren can come to make more memories. Back in California we rented one of those fairly new “McMansion” type homes for the last 4 years and in spite of all the upgrades and bells and whistles it had, I never felt as happy as I do in this moment. This place reminds me of my grandparents’ home in New Jersey. Theirs was a 3-story place with my grandfather’s general store in front. When we visited, I would wake up in the middle of the night and go down to the store to sneak a gumball (probably why I have bad teeth). I still have one of the ice cream scoops he used back in the day when he made 10-cent cones for the neighborhood kids. The place has since been sold and turned into a seafood restaurant. I drive by when we’re in Cape May and I’m immediately transformed into the little girl in pigtails and sandals, with all the smells of the shop and of Nanny’s home cooking so deep in my senses, it’s as if I’m there again.

I sit in my office chair, straining to keep it from turning into the downhill slope in the floor and I breathe a sigh of contentment. For me, it’s not about how shiny or new or pretty it is. It’s about where the love is, and our love is here. My husband has a great job that he can see himself at for the next 20 years. We are closer to our children and our grandson. With luck, more grandchildren will be enjoying these walls as the years pass.

And we are finally home.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

~ This is why I do it ~

Delta Reservations, 1965

by Tina~in_ut

For the most part, the calls I get at work are boring. They are the same thing day in and day out: stupid questions. My main job is customer service, but those challenging calls are few and far between now, for various reasons. I'm also newly trained for CRO (Complaint Resolution Officer) calls, but haven't had many of those yet, thank God. A CRO takes calls from disabled passengers who were treated poorly. We take these calls very seriously and to me, these are the scariest calls ever. We get everything from assigning blocked seats because the passenger has an emotional support animal or fused leg, to complaints because an ordered wheelchair was not supplied, to oxygen requests, or because we lost a passengers wooden leg! (that's another story!)

Today a lady called me and the first thing out of her mouth was that she had a lot of stupid questions. I thought, "You and every other person I talked to today!" ..... but I just laughed. Then she said I was going to think she was an idiot. That got me laughing. I told her that I had just hung up with the idiot! Then she told me the reason for her call. Her husband is on oxygen and needed to fly from Atlanta to Phoenix, but she was concerned because he needs it constantly and she found out that he could not use his own onboard. She couldn't figure out how he was going to get from the car to the plane and then off the plane to the house without us supplying the oxygen. You see, this man cannot even walk from his bed to the living room without it and she was sure he couldn't take his through security.

When we get a call having to do with any kind of disability, we are not allowed to answer any question off the top of our head. We have to look up the answer every time, even if we know it. If the FAA audits us and we answer without pausing to look up the information, we get fined A LOT of money. I don't seem to have a problem pausing! In fact, this woman was on hold for a long time. I looked up all the information we had on oxygen and was asking my boss about the situation. I even googled to find out where this woman could get oxygen for her husband.

When I went back to her, before I could even tell her what I found out, she told me her "story." Her husband was dying. He didn't have long to live. When he was told of this, his wife immediately set out to find the daughter he hadn't seen in many years. The man's ex-wife had kidnapped the girl when she was young and told her that her father didn't want to have anything to do with her. The girl was even told her father's name was something other than what it was. The lady found her on MySpace. She's 23 years old and has a daughter of her own now. The lady's greatest wish was to reunite her husband with his daughter. They have talked on the phone, but haven't seen each other.

When I told the woman that her husband could bring his oxygen as far as the jetway, that we'd store it for him during the flight while he used the oxygen we would supply, and then his would be returned once the flight landed, the relief, pure joy, and excitement in her voice made me cry. I've had nasty passengers make me cry before, but I've never had a nice one cause tears. She was so happy. In her eyes, I was responsible for reuniting her family, although we all know that's not true. I don't even know this woman's name, but the 20 minutes I spent with her on the phone will not be forgotten soon. Calls like hers are the reason I do the job I do~

Monday, July 13, 2009

The Scars of Life

by Just_Lin

Living a life is messy business and no one gets out unmarked. Our scars tell a story. They are like little vignettes of our lives. The other day my eyes settled on a slightly curved scar that I have over the joint where my right thumb connects to my hand. It's not a very noticeable scar but what's unusual about it is that it is really a double scar, one placed precisely over the other and caused by duplicate incidents that happened several years apart. In both cases, I was washing a glass and as I pushed a sponge down into the glass, swirling in a clockwise motion, the glass broke, slicing my thumb open. Did you know that when you part the skin over your thumb it looks just like chicken bones in there?

Another scar on my right hand is equally subtle. It is about 1 1/2 inches long and is the result of a cat scratch. When I make a fist and make the skin taut across the top of my hand, I can run my other hand over the scar and it feels just like a thin string is sitting right under my skin. Considering the dozens of feral kittens I caught and domesticated over the years, it's surprising that I don't have more "cat" scars.

The oldest scar I have I can't see anymore because my thighs are no longer exposed to the sun (or the public) and I can only see it when I am tan. It is located on my right thigh and is a human bite mark. It happened when I was a young girl and a neighbor girl, only 3 or 4 at the time, bit me, for unknown reasons. I will never forget Cindy Lesh, the little twit.

Two of my scars were caused by surgeries. I had emergency surgery in '96 for a perforated ulcer and peritonitis (major infection in the abdominal cavity). I have never been in so much pain in my life and the situation was life threatening. As a result of that surgery, I have a scar that begins on my chest right at the bottom edge of my bra and runs through my belly button and about three inches farther down. It's about one inch wide and definitely indicates that something formidable happened there. Eight months later I was diagnosed with thyroid cancer and they slit my throat, literally, and removed my thyroid gland. It was really unsatisfactory when I woke up in the middle of the surgery and began pushing everyone's hands away because they were making my neck hurt like a mofo. Boy, was I pissed, too!

It's not noticeable, except to me, but everyday when I put on my makeup, I come to an area in my left eyebrow where the hair doesn't grow right. That's because there is a small scar there where my first husband hit me in the face with a baby bottle. I was holding the baby at the time. That's only a little, insignificant scar. It's the invisible scars he left that are the worst.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Beach Boys!

Chosen by Iteach

My father always wanted to be one of the Beach Boys. It didn't quite happen, but he still loves their music. When I was a little girl he would play their 8-track in the car all the time. I can remember falling asleep in the car to him singing 409. Then as a teenager he would play them in the garage and I could hear his music from my lawn chair. I was a sun worshipper back then and I would once again fall asleep in the sun to the Beach Boys. When my dad hit 50 and after a few beers he decided to make his life dream come true. Him and his buddies dyed their hair blond, so that they could be beach boys. That lasted for a whole year and boy did he look goofy. I think back to it now and just smile. So today's blog is in honor of my dad.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Smile :O)

Many years ago as a teen, music was my world. I adored my teen music, and each group that surfaced, was just another one to adore. The Jackson Five was of course one of them. Michael Jackson in particular had my attention. His voice, his songs, his moves, I was in awe. He was part of my growing up, and each new song, with each new year was my favorite. I danced to all his songs, and new the words to most of them. When music videos started to surface, his are what I loved the most. As time went on and music changed, it seemed so did Michael Jackson. I lost touch with this odd fellow, he started to do things I quite did not understand, so I pulled away, as I did, I felt that many people from my generation were doing the same and thinking the same word "weird".

As I saw him age and change many of his facial features, including his color, I was disgusted at what he become. The allegations of his child abuse, just proved to me that he was a man with many mental issues. I could not look at him anymore, or even listen to his songs without pure disgust.

When I heard of his passing, I felt bad, but yet could not understand my feelings because of what I once felt. I was so upset that the country had gone crazy with his passing as it seemed life stopped all around us, and it was all about Michael passing. What upset me the most was his passing is probably due to overdosing on drugs which to me is so unnecessary. Why should we honor a man such as this?

On Tuesday I needed to see for myself this memorial that I was sure was going to be a spectacular circus romp. When I saw his casket carried in by his brothers, something hit me like a ton of bricks. He was human, he was a father, a brother, a son. As people started to eulogized him, I was drawn in, and my heart began to cry. I had never thought of him as a human these past several years, he had turned into a Ogre for me. Yet, I never ever thought of him always being surrounded by paparazzi and spectator's when perhaps he just went to a store. He was never able to be "normal" his life was so far from what we know, that the sympathy in me grew for him. And I started to understand.

His memorial was a sweet surprise, done so well, so tasteful (except for Al Sharpton, who I can't stand, so I hit mute). What the memorial did for me was humanized him, something I had so forgotten. His children are beautiful and very real, no masks, no running, just there real and true, he was their Daddy, good, bad or indifferent, a father to them, it is what they knew, he was who they loved.

What stands out the most is of course Paris's farewell to her father, however, for me its when Jermaine sang Michael's favorite song (which I had no idea it was his favorite) "Smile" I could not help but think. "Smiles they are my favorite as well". Whenever I write a letter or comment, I always end with "Smiles" it has become my trademark. Smiles are so important, as you can see in the words.

Smile tho' your heart is aching,
Smile even tho' it's breaking,
When there are clouds in the sky
You'll get by,

If you smile
thro' your fear and sorrow,
Smile and maybe tomorrow,
You'll see the sun come shin-ing thro' for you

Light up your face with gladness,
Hide ev-'ry trace of sadness,
Al -'tho a tear may be ever so near,

That's the time,
You must keep on trying,
Smile, what's the use of crying,
You'll find that life is still worth-while,

If you just smile


It sounds very simple, a smile. But you have to wonder, when one such as he is so trapped in a world unknown to us, how simple could it have really been.

Friday, July 10, 2009


by DeeDee

Air New Zealand has hit on a novel way to make sure even the most jaded flyers keep their eyes glued on its flight safety briefing. Did you watch it? What they have come up with is pure genius! Because nobody ever really watches those things or pays attention….perhaps because we are so sure that nothing will go wrong with our flight.

Well if you didn’t watch the safety video you may want to when I tell you the Air New Zealand crew is nude……they are wearing body paint to look like their usual uniforms……

Although the chance of your ever needing this information is extremely unlikely….this makes it fun to watch… the behind the scenes video check out the bums on the two flight deck officers as they pass through the airport…..woof!!

And that muscle bound ramp worker in the yellow shirt!!?? He can work my ramp any day!!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

State Quarters

by EBJ

One day, back in 1998, I was in Walgreens Drug Store. Something caught my eye on one of the shelves, a large, flat box that said "State Quarter Collection".

I picked up a box and was surprised to read that each year from 1999 to 2008, the U.S. Mint would release quarters by state. They would release 5 quarters per year, in the order they were admitted to the union.

The quarters would be specially designed and have a special meaning for that particular state. When the California quarter was being designed, they had a web site that you could go to and vote on designs that had been submitted. I think Arnold had the final say, however.

Well, I picked up several boxes and bought them, thinking they would make great Christmas gifts.

When 1999 arrived, I started looking for the very first quarter, Delaware. It took forever to get one. The quarters were released about every 10 weeks or so, and I would always be on the lookout.

So today, the map is still not complete! My most recent find was a couple weeks ago, I got a Wyoming, from 2007.

These days, thanx to the debit card, neither me nor MR. EBJ pay with cash too often, so we don't get a lot of change or quarters.

When I do get quarters, I always look! I have asked cashiers if I can check their quarters or traded people if they have one I need.

I still need:

2006 North Dakota

2007 Montana, Washington, Idaho, Utah

2008 Oklahoma, New Mexico, Arizona

I gave MR. EBJ a quarter map shortly after we started dating, and he is missing:

2007 Montana, Wyoming

2008 Hawaii, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Arizona

Click Here for the web site where you can see each quarter in detail.

Does anyone else in the nest collect the state quarters? If you do, have you gotten all of them?

Wednesday, July 8, 2009


by Mary/MI

I met Bernie when I was in grade school. He always had a crush on me, but to me he was just like a Brother. I will always remember his sweet smile. I often wonder how our lives would have been, had we ever connected. Here is the story of Bernie's last day on earth.

Bernie(baby face) Began his tour of duty May 23,1968. At the age of 20 yrs. Corp. Rosales was killed in action in the Province of Long An South Vietnam, while checking on a fallen Comrade. Before 25hrs passed, Bernie's body had been airlifted and repatriated to his family in Ithaca MI. Joe Rambo was there to see, feel, and cry for Bernie. Yes Bernie always had a smile on his face.

How Bernie died:

We were at close quarters around a "hooch". Charlie Co. was coming in on the other side. There was a VC/NVA, in a bunker we didn't see, and he shot & killed this guy from Charlie Co. After the VC was eliminated, Bernie walked up and leaned his rifle against the "hooch" & bent over to see if the guy was dead. There were two VC in the "spider hole", which was impossible to see. One of them shot Bernie....there were tears shed. We then eliminated those two VC . Later we captured 2 more.We had to stay the night in a defensive position until the next day. Bernie's body was airlifted that night along with 2 prisoners.The Co. Commander told the Battalion Commander if he didn't come to get the prisoners,they may not live through the night. I think he was probably right.We were not in the best of moods.....

Written by Joe RamboECHO,2ND BN 39th Infantry 9th Division US Army

Bernie was remembered with much love by his friends and family and classmates at Ithaca High Class of 1966. He is remembered with great pride and honor by his Comrades of Echo Co. 1st Recondos Bernie's name is etched in marble of the wall Panel 44w,line019.

When anyone was KIA, the Co. Commander wrote a letter to the parents or wife. I remember Bernie's Mother wrote back and sent us all a box of cookies, goodies etc. From my recollection the letter was in Spanish. Unfortunately for us, none of us could read it.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Did you know....

by Dianne_in_Denver

My granddaughter had a very interesting project for school. She was to take on the role of someone famous from our state and explain all about them. I thought it would be fun for everyone to tell a little about someone famous from your state. I will start by "borrowing" my granddaughter's character:

Ruth Handler: Ruth is the inventor of the Barbie and Ken doll. She and her husband and another man also founded Mattel. She named the dolls after her two children (which they didn't like at all). She and her husband made millions of dollars over the years. There is a twist to this story, which I was very surprised to hear. Around 1972, Mrs. Handler lied to the stockholders about the value of the stock. She was tried and convicted of fraud and was sentenced to 41 years in prison. Although she never went to prison, she did end up paying fines, serving 500 hours of community service and was on probation for 5 years. She soon resigned from the company she founded. you all didn't know about that and probably didn't care...but who is someone famous from your state?

Monday, July 6, 2009

A Thank You....

As our lives have been continuing on, one of our dear friends Sacbarb has been busy taking care of her son Chad, who had major surgery. I stayed in touch with Sacbarb and thru her, I was able to have contact with her Son. I have been on a incredible journey reading and learning about his daily struggles as he continues to recuperate from his surgery. I have learned that many of you have also been in touch with Sacbarb and Chad, you all have been sending them good wishes, heartfelt thoughts and many prayers. I received the following e-mail from Chad, with his permission, I offer it to all of you as our daily blog.


Hi. My name is Chad and I'm the son of SacBarb.

On June 11, I had to have a quadruple bypass at the age of 37. My mom posted about it here on the blog and many, many people said that they would keep me in their thoughts and prayers. Some even posted on my personal blog documenting my journey through this. I Just wanted to say a big "Thank You" to the Night Owl community. I've never felt so "loved" by people that I've never met.

My healing is going slow but good. Every day is a baby step (or 7) toward a total recovery. There have been a couple of setbacks but they were both relatively minor. I'm told I should make a 100% recovery.

Thanks again to everyone for helping both me and my mother through this very difficult time. I don't think she'd have made it through all this as well as she has without all the love and support from her friends here.

One last thing...

Thanks mom for dropping out of your life at the drop of a hat to take care of the "black sheep". No words can explain how much this has helped and meant to me to have you here. There will never be words to explain my feelings for you. I may have been looking for Dad but I'm glad I came back to you. I love you.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

♪♪Tuesday Afternoon♪♪

Chosen by EBJ

The is one of my favorite songs, "Tuesday Afternoon" by the Moody Blues. It's currently being used in a Visa commercial! The video has some nice pictures.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

~ Happy Independence Day ~

By Tina~in_ut

I can't stand the 4th of July. It's my least favorite Holiday. It makes me nervous to watch my kids lighting fireworks. The dog and cat go crazy. Someone always gets hurt. The neighbors think it's great to light illegal fireworks and I'm afraid they will land on my house and it'll catch on fire! I usually try to work on that day.

When Carol asked me to write this blog, I started laughing. I asked her if I should write about how much I can't stand it! Then I remembered one 4th of July that I just loved and had a wonderful time with my family:

When the twins were about 4 or 5 yrs old, my hubby had a conference in Alexandria, VA, and since his room was paid for and we could fly free, we all went with him. It was at the end of June and we decided to extend our stay to be there for the 4th of July. It was on a Sunday and, of course, we had to find a church to go to. I always thought that the National Cathedral was the Catholic Cathedral. I'm so glad it isn't, as that puppy is one ugly church. So off we went early to church at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. As my youngest said that day, over and over, "It takes two twains to get to the chuwch! The wed one and the gween one!" He had trouble with his R's and sometimes his L's. The basilica was enormous. There was so much to see after mass.

The entire time we were in D.C., it was over 100 degrees and much of the country was experiencing the same heat wave. Instead of going straight to the Mall after church to await the fireworks, we spent 6 hours in the Basilica visiting the 70 chapels, the cafeteria, and the bookstore. There we found THE most precious item for my youngest.....his Capitoh watoh bottoh (Capital water bottle). The kid was obsessed with going to the Capitol. We never could figure out why.

After that, we started off for the Mall. It was still early.....hours before dusk. On our way, we found that the National Archives was open. The kids were bored because it's hard to explain the importance of the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights to someone so young. One thing they did understand, though, was that the air conditioning was on in the building!

We couldn't stall any longer, and off we went to find a place to sit at the National Mall and wait to see the fireworks. It seemed like we sat there sweating our buns off forever, but it really wasn't more than a couple of hours. By the time the fireworks started, my kids and hubby had their shirts off and we were all drenched. I forgot that the twins didn't like loud noises. I ended up with my youngest in my lap. There is nothing nastier than a kid drenched in sweat sitting in your lap!!!! He covered his ears the entire time and had that worried look on his face. The fireworks were spectacular. Of course, when it was over, my scared little child was just as excited as everyone else around him and back to his old self.

I don't think you can describe the experience of spending Independence Day in Washington, D.C. It's incredible, fantastic, over-the-top, and makes you proud to be an American. I can, though, describe what it's like for hundreds of thousands of your closest friends to head for the same subway at the same time! SCARY!! In all the mayhem, I ran into a co-worker, which was really weird. And while I was trying to talk to him, my youngest was pulling on my arm. He wanted to know if we were taking "two twains or just one!"

Happy Independence Day to all~

(and happy birthday to Tucker!) :D

Friday, July 3, 2009

Important Womans Health Issue!!

by Maureen

Do you have feelings of inadequacy?
Do you suffer from shyness?
Do you sometimes wish you were more assertive?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist about Margaritas .

Margaritas are the safe, natural way to feel better and more confident about yourself and your actions.
Margaritas can help ease you out of your shyness and let you tell the world that you're ready and willing to do just about anything.

You will notice the benefits of Margaritas almost immediately and with a regimen of regular doses you can overcome any obstacles that prevent you from living the life you want to live. Shyness and awkwardness will be a thing of the past and you will discover many talents you never knew you had..

Stop hiding and start living, with Margaritas.

Margaritas may not be right for everyone. Women who are pregnant or nursing should not use Margaritas. However, women who wouldn't mind nursing or becoming pregnant are encouraged to try it.

Side effects may include:
Dizziness, nausea, vomiting, incarceration
Loss of motor control
Loss of clothing
Loss of money
Table dancing
Dry mouth
And a desire to sing Karaoke

WARNING: The consumption of Margaritas may make you think you are whispering when you are not.
WARNING: The consumption of Margaritas may cause you to tell your friends over and over again that you love them.
WARNING: The consumption of Margaritas may cause you to think you can sing.
WARNING: The consumption of Margaritas may make you think you can logically converse with members of the opposite sex without spitting.

After careful research, doctors have learned that red wine, Cosmo's and champagne may be interchangeable with the product, Margarita