Tuesday, March 27, 2012

It is a mistake to think you can solve any major problems with just potatoes…

I don’t know what that means, but I have a problem.
And I really don’t think throwing potatoes at it is gonna help.

This problem is causing me to lose sleep. I wish it was causing me to lose weight, because then I could totally live with it. But sleep, at my age and hormone level is a fleeting thing and I need all I can get. So being worried over this problem is detrimental to my health.

That is why I’m going to put it out there for all of you to see. I have hopes that someone, somewhere, will be able to help me through my difficult time. That’s what friends are for, right? I do consider each and every one of you my close, personal friend. Please help me.

 

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How many pickle plants should I put on my plantation?

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Monday, March 26, 2012

If you fail to prepare, you prepare to fail…

When the Marine was just a boy, he came to me and asked if he could be in the Boy Scouts. It was a bit off the wall because we didn’t know any boy scouts. In fact, I didn’t think we knew any other boys in our neighborhood. When I asked him why he wanted to be a scout, he looked at me with all of his 10 year old sincerity and said “Not that I don’t enjoy being with you, I just think I need to do some guy stuff.”

Guy stuff?

Apparently, for him, there was a question of whether a single mom would provide any enough guy stuff for him to achieve manhood.

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The Marine learned to camp and hike and build fires. Actually, he was too good at building fires and was asked to hand over the flames reins to the scout leader on a number of occasions. He earned all manner of badges that would prepare him for life as a man, like camping, citizenship in the community, lifesaving and personal management. He also connived a dog care badge by having me sign something that said he fed the dog once. Oh yeah, he was preparing to be a man, alright.

Anyway, the Marine also tried do a good turn daily, as scouts are trained to do, but I really don’t think giving his brother a wedgie every morning counts. But he did do nice things for the neighbors, like hanging Christmas lights and mowing lawns.

For him, this was guy stuff. This was preparing to be a grown up man.

Once he hiked his way to Eagle Scout, he turned his head to the future. Ostensibly, he wanted even more guy stuff, because he signed up for the the most manly-man troop there is – the Marine Corps.

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He learned to shoot all kinds of guns, fight with big Q-tip looking things, crawl through mud, climb high walls and many other sweat inducing things. This is the kind of stuff that makes you strong, not just in body but in mind, as well. It must have been the epitome of guy stuff. I can’t imagine any organization offering more than the Marine Corps in the masculinity department.

If the Corps didn’t prepare you to be a man, nothing would, I suppose. (I mean absolutely no disrespect to female Marines and other servicewomen. Honestly. You guys rock and can kick the asses of most all of the men I know) During his years in the Corps, he has also learned the art of patience, communication and a well thought out plan of attack.

From the first time he asked about scouts, it occurred to me that he was preparing to be a man. Preparing to find his place in this world. All of his choices were designed to help him do just that. He has taken away so much from each of his organizations, from the Scout Law:
A Scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean, and reverent.
to the Marine Corps Values: Honor, Courage, Commitment,
that I am quite sure there is no one more prepared for his place in the world than the Marine.

 

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How’s that dog care badge workin for ya?

Monday, March 19, 2012

Skater gets a scooter and Dawn gets a doodle…

Skater is an urban kind of fellow. He lives near the center of town and finds he can get just about anywhere in Austin on his skateboard or the bus. He is very happy with the fact that the mile or so to work is uphill on the way there, and of course, all downhill on the way home. He tells me that for most people, quitting time is the best part of the day (agreed! –Hey. I used to work, okay?) and that is also true for him. He said for those folks, though, that’s it, just quitting time. For him, he gets on his skateboard and heads downhill with the wind on his face and the board under his feet. Can you imagine downhill skiing home from work? Yeah, it’s like that, I guess.

Until the night he got pulled over by a policeman.

Yes, I do believe Skater is the only kid I know to get pulled over on a skateboard. Sometimes I think if he didn’t have bad luck, he’d not have any luck at all. Apparently, it is wrong to skateboard down the middle of road, even when there is no traffic, this being a suburban type street and all. Skater was polite and explained how he enjoyed coming home from work in a downhill manner on this particular street because there wasn’t traffic. Even thought the policeman smiled, he strongly recommended that Skater stay on the sidewalk from now on.

It was after that Skater decided he needed a scooter. He explained to me that not only could he get back and forth to work a little faster, he could now take his girlfriend on a proper date, seeing as how he only has one skateboard. Gosh, what a lucky girl.

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Skater and his scooter, Sheila

He asked me if I wanted to go for a spin with him, to which I promptly said, Umm. NO. Did I need to remind him of my near-death experience on one of those slaughter machines? In case you need a reminder, you can read about it here.

He promised me he would always be careful and wear a helmet, just as soon as he got one. *sigh* 
Luckily, I was there in time for his 22nd birthday, so guess what Mom and Dad gave him for his birthday? Right. And dinner at Joe’s Crab Shack, which has become an annual tradition for me and the Skater.

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As cute as it is, no, that’s not his new helmet.

This is:

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He tells me you’d be surprised at how much it hurts when a bug hits your face, even on a scooter.

While I was in Austin, not riding around on the back of the scooter, I decided to drop in at Mom’s. You know, where Moms go to get tattoos. I know, I know. I said I probably would not get another tattoo. Well, I remember saying two kids was enough, too. And then…Hello, Skater!

I had asked Skater to help design a tattoo that had the initials of all three of my children, being as how he has the most experience with tattoos (none of which say Mom, BTW). He came up with an idea and Blake, the tattoo dude, worked with it a little bit to become exactly what I wanted. As I sat down, Skater told Blake that he was the “K” so be sure to make that one extra special. I tell you, nothing bonds a mother and son more than spending an afternoon together at the tattoo parlor.

To answer the question – again - yes, it hurt.

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And no, Skater did not get a “Mom” tattoo. Dammit.

Maybe next time…

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Work is the curse of the drinking classes…

I like work. I can sit and look at it for hours.

You would be surprised at the many jobs I have had over the years. I never worked somewhere that I didn’t enjoy. Life is just too short. I was telling the Girl the other day that I never took any of my jobs too seriously and I never put my life on the line for them. Good thing I wasn’t a policeman.

What I meant by that was, I wasn’t going to head out in icy/stormy/tornado weather to go to a job. I was raising three children on my own. They were Job #1 and I wasn’t going to risk my life going to job #7623414. But that was many years ago. These days Job #1 is CGMan and the dogs.

While I was out west, I went to work. Don’t get all excited, because I didn’t actually do any work. I just went to work. Other people’s work. And you know what? That is really fun! I think I’d like to make that my new job, going to other people’s work and just watch them work. Ooooh, that’s called an inspector! I think I could be very good at that.

I went to the Girl’s work, Champagne Images, where she transformed my dowdy, can’t-find-a-hairstylist-in-my-new-town-so-I-cut-it-myself hairdo into a chic, naturally red, style. She also showed me how to put on makeup and fix my overplucked eyebrows. Did you know that at some point, they just don’t grow back? Dammit. Anyway, I spent the day there, getting to know some of the clients and also the other stylists. I am so proud of the Girl for working hard at beauty school and finding the job that she enjoys. I’m happy for her.

My next foray into the workplace was to see my longtime BFF, Barbara, who owns Let Them Eat Cake. Way back in the day, Barbara used to make her cakes in her kitchen and I would sit on a stool to keep her company while she decorated. This was easy to do because I lived across the street. Now, when I come to town, I visit her at her lovely little shop, sit on a stool and watch her decorate cakes. I also like watching her staff decorate cakes, and sometimes I get to lick a spoon.

It is amazing what these girls can do with frosting, besides licking it off a spoon:

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Oh, did I mention that not only was Barbara my maid of honor when I married CGMan, she also made my wedding cake? She is that awesome. That is not her in the picture above.

This is her, making cake balls:

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And this is her husband, Mitch (the very same husband for which I was her maid of honor when she married him almost 20 years ago) making the cupcakes that are to die for:

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If you live in the Phoenix area or visit there, you have got to try the cupcakes!! Tell ‘em Dawn sent you.

I also had the opportunity to go with Sunshine to her work, which is in a hospital. It is actually the very hospital where the Marine was born so many years ago. He asks her all the time if they still have his picture hanging on the wall of fame. What she sees in him….

Sunshine works in the lab at the hospital. I didn’t take any pictures in there because it didn’t seem like a “touristy” part of the hospital. She showed me all the cool machines that can look at your blood, plasma, bone marrow, urine (and other nasty stuff). It looked a bit scary to me. It’s a good thing she went to school all those years to learn how to do that. I’d be afraid to turn one on!

The one thing I took away from that tour was this: if you’re in the ER or the operating room and they’ve sent your spleen to the lab - STAT, you better hope someone didn’t bring her brand new baby in there. Let me tell you, as soon as we came through the doors, there were squeals of excitement and all of the ladies in Sunshine’s department came running over to fight over who got to hold the Lil Prince first. No matter that there were lives on the line or anything. No, there was a baby in the house!!

CGMan has offered to let me come to work with him, but since he sits behind a desk and has meetings about boring stuff all day, I declined. I’m sure it’s an important job, but can it make me beautiful, feed me cake or see how many more vodka tonics my liver can take? I didn’t think so.

Now, if he were to work in a shoe store, we could talk.

What is your job? And can I come see it?

Monday, March 12, 2012

Hunnies…I’m home!

I’ve missed you! Really, I have. You might think I hardly thought of you while I was away and well, you would be correct. You might have thought I was never going to come home again and I must admit, the thought crossed my mind. You could even have made the assumption that I had gone a little “grandbaby crazy” and I can’t say you’d have been far off the mark.

But something happened while I was away. Something that made me remember who you are what loyal friends I have in you, my readers. It made me realize there is nothing more to life than grandbabies. It reminded me I have DCMan ZTMan PDMan a husband and a couple of dogs who need me, too.

What happened, you ask? I’ll tell you what happened.

The mommies took control.

All of a sudden, the mommies knew how feed, burp, change and bathe, all while getting the requisite two daily loads of baby laundry done and managing to look beautiful and well rested. Okay, maybe they weren’t well rested, but they looked it. One of the mommies even mastered the crock pot to put me out of work save time in the kitchen.

Nana offered to stay forever a while, but there were no takers. They had everything under control.

*snort* Yeah, they’ll be singing a different tune when those babies are teenagers. Ha!

Until then, I am back in my empty nest with my two dogs, Chloe and Bebe.

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While I’ve been reacquainting myself with my husband, who by the way, is out of town this whole week, (WTH?) a couple of important anniversaries happened.

March 1st – I have been a NON-smoker for four years! Yay me!

March 6th – I have been a blogger for three years! Yay me!

My husband, CGMan, right? has been glad to have me home. While it seems we have spent the greater part of our marriage apart, it’s not something we like to do. It just happens. He told me how much he missed me and how he didn’t like when I was away for so long. I reminded him that HE went away to the other side of the world and we were apart for longer periods of time. He responded with a heartfelt “Yeah, but I didn’t have to watch the dogs”. God, I love that man.

And I love you, too, my readers. Thanks for hanging around.

Monday, March 5, 2012

There is nothing half so pleasant as coming home again…

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one of these

and

one of these
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I am so glad to be home. But I am tired. TIRED, I tell you.

I’m going to recharge for a couple of days with my La-Z-Boy and my dogs, cook dinner for my ever patient husband and then, I might even unpack.

I have stories to tell (I went to WORK!) and recipes to share, but I need a nap first.

So what have you been up to?
I’ve missed you!!