Wednesday, September 22, 2010

THE MAGIC OF CIVICS...

If anyone had told me 20 years ago, that I would have spent the last 15 minutes before sunset walking across a hay field watching the skies for geese, inhaling the scent of Gio cologne wafting through the air that my crush from junior high was wearing, I would have told them they were completely insane. And yet, it's true. I did that tonight. I'm sitting here right now shaking my head and smiling, knowing my history with this boy.
It all started in my 7th grade Civics class. I scored a seat in the back corner of the room, right by the door. So when the "hall monitors" came to pick up the attendance for that hour, I had a prime view. Of course the teacher for this class was beyond cool...Mr. 'M' was young and had a knack for relating to the younger generation while still maintaining a necessary level of authority. He also thought it be "fun" to play on the "weakness" of a "little girl's" crush. He caught me gazing at this boy every time he came around. He'd even prolong my "agony" by holding him up with casual conversation. It was SO HARD not to just stare at this boy and soak up every feature, his sparkly eyes, his cute blond hair, his intoxicating smile...*sigh*....yes, this boy had everything a 7th grade girl could ever want or dream of. He was a year older than I, and hung with the popular crowd if I remember correctly; which meant a few things, one of which was that he was waaaa-haay out of my league. So I was left with nothing but my daily dose of the boy when he came to pick up attendance. And somehow, that was good enough for me. BUT...hoooo-hoooo, BUT--Mr. M, sensed that I wanted more. So during his "casual" conversation with the boy, I heard him mention my name along with "she's cute right?" All I could think was "Oh, holy fuuuuuuck." I don't think I looked at the boy for a week after that, for fear he would somehow think I had asked Mr. M to say those things to him about me. But I couldn't hold out any longer than a week. No way. I missed his eyes. I missed his smile. I missed his voice. I missed his laugh. And technically, he'd never know these things. And he never did.
Then, one faithful day, September 1, 2009, as I was laying in the middle of a wheat field, on opening day of goose season, I was checking FaceBook. On my page, "the boy" had been my "friend" even though we'd never actually spoken. But we have mutual friends and went to school together--and well--you know how FaceBook works. So I see a post from the boy stating: Text me the goose report *cell number*. I half laughed and half cringed because, here I was, in the PERFECT position to communicate with the boy, but so I go out on a limb and actually DO IT?! Well, either I was feeling especially brave that morning or the lack of sleep caused a temporary lapse of good judgment in my brain because I just "DID IT". When I hit "send", I screamed inside and squeezed my eyes shut waiting for the backlash. It wasn't 10 minutes later that my BlackBerry chirped and I had one new text. Oh crap. My heart started pounding but I knew I had to finish what I started. The text read something to the effect of: "thanks, who is this?". Then I was like shiiiiiit. So I decided to bust out my wits and go to war with the boy. So I replied that I was the queen of the GOOSE MAFIA and he requested the goose report so who better to get it from than "ME"?? So eventually he nailed it down to who I was and we "joked" about a joint hunt someday.
WELL...turns out "someday" wasn't too far off in the future. We planned to meet out at the "D.O.T." In October, just about a month after our first contact. I was sooooo excited....but sooooo-oooh nervous. I'd say there were butterflies in my tummy but that would be completely inaccurate. It was more like BATS flop'n around in there. So finally, we meet he jumps out of his truck, and turns around, and this wave of heat washed over me. I was instantly that "little girl" back in 7th grade, with the crush on the 8th grade 7th hour hall monitor. His eyes, his smile...all fully intact. Damn him. But I had to get it together. So I tried my best and introduced him to the guys and got the hunt under way.
After that things just got better, our friendship grew and we even revisited the 7th grade crush incident. He claimed he didn't know. But I think he was just being polite as to protect my school girl crush memories. We even joke about it in front of everyone else, but it's more of an inside joke and a way for us to rip on each other. But I love it. I love those eyes. I love that smile. I love that laugh. The only difference is that, now he KNOWS about it...

Monday, August 30, 2010

THE END.

6:30 PM  An hour and a half separating me from my weekend.  Friday nights are usually pretty slow after 6:00.  I was hoping tonight was no exception.  Maybe Harold would close up shop early like he does some times when it's slow...I think he's just as anxious as I am to get the weekend going.  Not much time had lapsed when I heard the familiar "RING" of the bells above the glass entry doors.  I heard some boyish banter and laughing.  When I rounded the corner I was relieved to see it was only my younger brother and some of his friends coming for what was undoubtedly, their usual Friday night fair, frozen pizzas and soda.  But what happened next was not what I expected.  When my boyfriend walked through the doors and our eyes met, I know mine sparkled with excitement as my breath caught in my lungs and I smiled as brightly as I could.  But he didn't return the sentiment...no...indeed he did not.  Instead his smile quickly turned to a look of anger and his eyes were transfixed on my now confused face.  I suddenly had this pang of fear and doubt run through my body...as he approached, my heart rate picked up; not like it normally does; when my body is all "aflutter" with my tragic love for him.  This time, it was strictly out of FEAR.  When we were finally face to face, and the other boys were out of ear shot, he said to me in a hushed tone, "you look very pretty tonight...is that a new shirt?"  Unclear of his intentions, I meekly whispered, "yes."  He took a deep breath, looked around once more and then with all the restraint he had in his body he whispered angrily, "DON'T. EVER. WEAR. IT. AGAIN."  I, of course, didn't know how to respond to this.  I could feel my whole body go weak, and I swallowed hard.  Just then, the other boys and my brother came wheeling around the corner laughing and joking around as usual.  I shook off what had just transpired to the best of my ability, and plastered a fake smile on my face, while holding back the inevitable flood of tears that otherwise would have occurred.  I took in the natural "ribbing" from the guys, and 'he' acted as though nothing was out of the ordinary.  As the boys left, he threw a frightening glance over his shoulder, just as he disappeared through the doors...  That, was the beginning of the end.

Monday, August 16, 2010

WHAT LITTTLE GIRLS ARE MADE OF...

When I was a little girl,  I never wore dresses or painted my nails or did anything normal girls that age wanted to do...  "Be a princess!" OH HELL NO!  Thinking back, I don't think I ever possessed an ounce of "typical little girl" status. I always hung out with the boys.  Mostly because the majority of my family consists of  "boys" and therefore, I didn't have a whole lot of choice in the matter.  Getting the boys to conform to the idea of me tagging along with them was the issue.  I had plenty of girl friends who I spent time with on a regular basis, but quite frankly, they were fucking boring compared to the time spent with my brothers, my cousins and their friends. I was the redneck girl thrashing through the mud on a quad with her cousins laughing like a maniac!  To this day, I'm still the little girl, wanting to tag along with the boys on their dangerous adventures rather than go to the mall or try on absurd amounts of clothing "just for the hell of it."  90% of my closet is dedicated to Fox Racing apparel, and the other 10% is split between Harley Davidson, camo and custom clothing made for the hunt club I co-created, "THE GOOSE MAFIA" (TM).  No Gap or American Eagle or Banana Republic for this chick...NOPE.  Don't get me wrong, I DO retain a fair amount of feminine status--this girl likes to look good...in and out of the field.  My hair has its very own reputation to uphold.  It's my favorite feature.  See? I really AM a chick *Wink*
I'm the girl all the boys love--and the one all the girls love to hate.  I'm a huge fan of any and all forms of weaponry (guns, bows, etc.) and hunting, fishing and explosives.  Yes, this girl loves her a little T-N-T!  Therefore, I can closely relate to most guys and that is awesome for me and awesome for them and COMPLETE hell for their girlfriends.  *Laughs*  I think it's funny. 
*Smiles bigger* I've also got sort of a brilliant, genius, maniac, lunatic "cousin" as we call him.  He's in the military and has served 2 deployments in Iraq...not SHORT ones either--18 months a crack.  He's home now.  Safe and sound....well....I use that term loosely.  He's as safe as a licensed pyro can possibly be.  *Laughs*  I remember him coming up to my grandparents almost every weekend for YEARS while I was a teenager and he was always causing some kind of chaos--wait--that's a lie--it was complete and pure pandemonium! ...and funnily enough, I always wanted in on the action.  I idolized this maniac.  We did some heinous things, but all in good fun, no one was ever hurt (that I'm aware of) and they are some of the funniest  memories and most missed times of my life that I can recall.  I'll give you a "milk and marshmallows" sampling of what we did--we paint balled the neighbors cows in 3 or four different fluorescent colors.  *shakes head laughing*  We were so fucking juvenile!!  And the worst part is, if you put a loaded paint ball gun in my hand right now, I'd do the same damn thing without thinking twice.  I do believe there were some M80's and a particular river/culvert incident too...that made me giggle. *shakes head*  Ever since then, spending time with that crazy cousin of mine, and being in such close proximity to weaponry and explosives,  and his constant fucking encouragement of my usage of such mechanics,  I now consider myself to be a fairly warped individual.  And I'm pretty sure some of my girf friends question my sanity on a regular basis.  I saw a pro pyro show a couple days ago put on by the PGI (Pyrotechnics Guild International) and my cousin was head of security at this particular shindig.  I had temporary VIP status and got to go behind the scenes...I saw and felt things NO ONE else ever could or will.  It only fueled the flames!  *Laughs* No pun intended, really.  I love playing with fire.  LOVE IT.  It's a complete rush.  Everyone plays with fire in their own way, mine just happens to be in the literal sense of the word.... There's something about that trademark "THUUUUNK!!" when a 12" shell ignites and the way the concussion resonates through your chest while watching sparks fly choreographed and synced perfectly to the beat of music.  It's like being thrown into an alternate universe... if you just let yourself "go" it's like falling through a magical tunnel of stars that sparkle infinitely.  It's how I imagine HEAVEN.  Instead of traveling through this metaphorical heaven, I want to CREATE it!





Sunday, July 25, 2010

LIFE'S MOST EMBARRASSING MOMENTS...

This program needs a spell check function. I bet I misspelled "embarrassing" in the title. I'm actually a pretty anal about spelling and grammar and when I go back and read my posts I just ache with remorse over the crappy simple mistakes I made. OOOYYYYY!! Going forth, I'll be more thorough, and I'll even spend more time...I wanna take this more seriously, since I've been getting positive feedback and because I'm thinking of taking this to a "new level", thanks to some encouraging words from a few great friends and even a couple surprise sources. :). Hang on people...together we ride...

Thursday, July 15, 2010

I'LL NEVER GET TO FIRST BASE AGAIN...

Sometimes life pulls you in so many directions at the same time, that you feel like you're just going to tear into shreds.  How does one deal with it?  'Tis my struggle...

My Grandparent's house has been in our family for over 100 years.  Grandma's father and her brother built the house, first a small square of a home, and little additions as they could after that.  Eventually, it turned into a beautiful 2 story white farmhouse, with a brown roof, a covered porch in the front and back, and 4 separate "wings" upstairs and just as many bedrooms.  I always loved the "slanted" ceilings when I was a kid...my love for them has only grown over the years.  I can't tell you how many Christmas trees I have been entranced with and how many times Grampa has trapped me for tickles and kisses under the mistletoe.  Or how many birthdays or Easters or just plain dinners have been spent there.  Playing in the front yard all summer, climbing the maple tree, all of us kids eventually carving our names somewhere within the bark.  Catching minnows in the creek.  Eating watermelon on a hot summer night.  Listening to Grampa yell at the tv during Brewer games.  Always finding an endless array of the most fabulous baked goods that my Gramma had constructed.  Her pies, could never be matched....I could stand side-by-side with her, and do exactly what she did, and STILL....it never turned out like hers.  I've tried a zillion times since then, and although I've gotten closer, I still haven't quite figured out what kind of magic that woman puts in her pies...

It's more than just the pies...it's that HOUSE...it holds SO many memories...so many sentimental moments in time...historic moments in time.  And now....it might be gone...in a heartbeat.

Speaking of heartbeat....mine beats a little faster these days.  It's been awhile since it has fluttered the way it does right now...it's exhilarating....and terrifying all at the same time. 

Mom and Dad are "re-landscaping".  I use that term loosely...they are pulling the old bushes out and replanting new ones in their places.  When we were kids, my little brother and I played kickball almost every summer night (that our parents would allow) with the neighbor kids.  She was like my sister, and he was like my brother's brother.  One of those bushes was first base.  It was big enough that if we were charging toward first hard enough, we could crash into it, it's branches and foliage safely catching us like a soft pillow slipped beneath us.  I don't know who was more sad to see that bush go...me or my dad...I swear I saw him shed a tear or two when he started the chainsaw to cut it down.  I'll never get to first base again...

I miss my childhood a lot.  So many times I wish I could turn the clock back, and pick out the moments I wish I had appreciated a little more at the time.  Talk to those I've lost, apologize to those I've hurt, play with those I cherished, pet my kitty one more time....

All I can do now is sift through the photos of times gone by with a fondness that can never be matched.  Let the memories wash over me sometimes, and just block out everything else, almost like reliving them....enough to make things feel tangible again. 

Make it count.  Now. 

Saturday, June 12, 2010

THE ASPEN HOLDS MY WORLD IN ITS...Errr..RADIATOR???

I remember it like it was yesterday. Pushing the passenger front seat forward so that I could slide in the back seat of that old Dodge Aspen. It was by far the coolest car to me. I never even minded going to church if I got to ride in that car with my dad. It was painted pumpkin orange.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dodge_Aspen
The time for the Aspen was cut short however, it was taken out by a black cow on a foggy morning. I think I cried harder about losing that car, than I did about not getting the Barbie corvette for Christmas that year! Who knew, that at such a young age a girl could become so attached to "a set of wheels".
Maybe that's still true to some extent today. I've always taken great pride in my ride, and since I haven't been able to drive for over 3 years, my ride has suffered considerably. I don't drive it anymore. I don't even feel like it's mine. Pat has inherited it. Just by default and since the Ford has completely tanked, it's just the obvious option.
I feel sad every time I get in that car..."The Grand Slam" the "GT 4 ANGI". No longer exists. I always held out hope that I would get my driving privileges back and that I would get my "baby" back too. But after 3 years and a handful of months, the bottom has sorta dropped out of said hope.
Then when GM axed Pontiac from production, I swear a part of my heart got axed too. Pontiac was my vehicle of choice since my first new vehicle in 1999. What kind of car would I like now? The Chevy (which, per GM you are not to use as phrase anymore, it's "Chevrolet, NOT "Chevy...so unless you wanna put money in a cuss jar, Chevrolet it is...) Has not one vehicle I'm interested in. I fell into a tizzy of despair. How freakish is that?
But it's okay...this story has a happy ending...I saw the light...or rather, the 2011 Ford Mustang commercial. It was love at first sight! Lucky for me, Patrick has always been a Ford man, so there's no twisting his arm to make this happen!
All we have to do, is wait for the good Lord to bestow upon us a financial windfall. The powerball would be great...we're not greedy...we don't need to win those 300 million pots...just a measly 1 million will do! And ya know what the worst part is? We are not the greedy type, so if ever we DID become so blessed to win such a huge pot, there would be so many winners besides ourselves...every member of our immediate family would be cared for for life...our nephews would go on to a college of their choice and they would never want for anything. My Grandmother would live out her remaining days in a fabulous mansion with the best caretaker and personal chef. My parents would own log home on large piece of property as would Patrick's parents. And I would start more than one no-kill animal shelters and rescue organizations with people whom I KNOW care more about the mammals well-being than their own. Like me, who pays pet's vet bills before my own doctor bills. Plus I'd live on a large piece of land with my husband/best friend and we'd have a large pond and his friend George would have a huge guest house to live in and take care of our property and to be our chef and friend. Funny, he and Pat already discussed that!
As for me, it would all be about dreams fulfilled. Traveling the world, getting more education. Owning my own businesses, take care of those I love. I know others say those things, but I would sign a contract right now as the only piece of solid proof I could offer!
So cross your fingers tonight...it's not just me that has something to lose, it's my whole world!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

DAYS GONE BY...

Well, I guess my "I'll update in 48 hours" plan fell through the floor.  Things got crazy, including but not limited to, my internet connection.  It seems with this new air card that I need to be either in the living room, or at Pat's house.  Pat's house is stellar, because, I have a 3G connection there. It's beyond ridiculous how much faster the connection is there compared to here (home).
SPRING TURKEY SEASON:
Shawnee and I were super stoked to have the same week for turkey season.  Shawn had everything all planned out, including how were going to get "a double". (2 turkeys, same time)   A very hard feat to pull off.  Our season started April 14 and ran until April 18.  I was all set to go out opening morning with him, and sit in the blind.  The area looked very promising, as there were turkeys there every day!  Unfortunately, a trip to the ER for me, destroyed our opening morning plans.  I did get out that afternoon for the night hunt.  We sat in the blind, and we had hens only 10 feet away from us.  They never had a CLUE we were there!  It was amazing to be that close!  Then the toms stepped out of the woods....oh, the blood started to boil then!  Shawn wanted to get one with the bow, so he was already for that.  The toms stayed about 60-70 yards out, which is waaaaaay too far away for a bow shot.  So we went home that night happy to have been so close to the birds without them knowing or frightening them off.
Day 2 we went out in the afternoon again.  We moved the tent to the back of the corn field (Ryan's east end of property) and we put it right inside the wood line off the corn field.  Every tom we saw, was back there at one point.  I figured we couldn't go wrong.  So we sat in the tent again, and Shawn was getting antsy.  He kept calling and calling and calling.  I told him to settle down and just be quiet for awhile but he was calling again in 2 seconds.  As we were in there, a small line of showers moved through, which brought about a 5 minute down pour. We were laughing because we really thought it was funny.  Not good for the turkey movement though.  Day 2 was in the books.
Day 3, Friday, night hunt.  Shawn and I decided to split up.  He took the north fenceline in the hopes he could cut the birds off if they came down the trail by the ponds.  I stayed in the blind knowing that if we were patient enough, those birds would come out of the NE corner, and either one of us could get a shot.  It was really windy and cold that day.  Shawn texted me several times that there was no movement where he was.  I had the same situation.  There may have been some very distant gobbles, but that was it.  We were getting really cold now.  I physically had to hold the tent down so it wouldn't blow over.  Shawn was texting me asking if we could quit.  I asked him to hold out til at least 6:00.  So it was quiet until then.  So he texted me again saying he was cold and I texted him back, can you hold out until 6:30? If you don't want to stay then walk over to the tent by me.  No sooner than he got that text and he was flying out of that wood line. LOL  He came to the tent, we put all the gear where it needed to be, and we exited.  As we were walking across the filed, Pat pulled up to pick us up.  We didn't see him motioning for us to "get down" because we were too busy talking strategy and how freaking cold it was.  Then we saw him and OH CRAP, the toms were strutting right down that trail where Shawn wanted to cut them off.  By the time we saw Pat and figured out what was happening, it was too late, they high tailed it out of there.  After that disappointment, Day 3 waas in the books.
Day 4, Saturday, Shawn went out in the morning with Scott.  I wasn't there to witness it, but he nailed his tom!!  Scott said it was an awesome shot (with the shotgun) and he stopped the bird in his tracks.




 So that afternoon, I went to check it out, after we decided to take the night off and go out to eat with Keith and Felicia to the Texas Roadhouse. It was a good time, but it was raining pretty much the whole time, so we just decided to head home after that.  Pat and I went home and snuggled in bed and were asleep by 8:00. It felt good.
Day 5, Sunday...the FINAL day I had to score a bird.  Pat and I went out early, around 3:00.  It was a long sit until 5:30...about the time the action usually starts.  It wasn't until about 6:00 when the birds showed up.  One hen at a time, from the NE corner of the field, which was directly to our right.  I remember seeing the toms work that edge more than once, so I was SURE they would do it again.  I was counting each hen, one by one...when finally, I looked, and yelled (in a whisper), "TURKEY ON THE FIELD! OH MY GOD! IT'S A TOM! HE'S COMING! HE'S COMING!!"  So, obviously, Pat was going to be the one with the level head in this situation...he said, "get your gun up"...so I did.  I was shaking SO BAD!  I had to laugh at myself because typically I don't get all worked up and shaky until AFTER the kill...this was a serious rush!  And to make matters worse...there were TWO toms coming!  Right down the wood line, just like I had predicted!  The turkeys were SO CLOSE, you could literally see their eye balls moving...turkeys have impecable eyesight, so I'm really not sure how we pulled this one off without them seeing us first and bugging out.  The toms were working their way toward us, I had the gun up, SHAKING MISERABLY, and the choke tube was actually sticking so far out the tent, I should have been able to tickle their beards! LOL  The first tom came by...I didn't take the shot because I wanted to see what "Number 2" looked like first...and then Number 2 showed up...he was beautiful...after flashbacks from my first turkey hunt, I told Pat to the back of my shoulder so I didn't flip over when I took the shot...  So with Pat whispering "SHOOT!" in my ear, I tried to steady myself and take a deep breath and "WAH-WHOOMP!" The shot was fired...I couldn't even see what happened after that, other than Pat bolting out of the blind...  When I regained my scruples, I saw him standing next to my bird...I dropped him where he stood...I was finally able to breathe again!  I came out of the tent and that is when the BEST part of the hunt happened....Pat smiled at me and said, "YOU DID IT! YOU DID IT!"  And he picked me up and hugged me and picked me up right off the ground! I never felt that he was so proud of me before!  After the adrenaline wore off, only a couple minutes later, that's when I started crying, then laughing, then crying...I'm a freaking basket case after I kill something.  Go figure.  I couldn't even dial my cell phone to give mom the news.  Pat had called him mom who I assumed asked if I was happy, and Pat replied, "she's in tears".  Ahhhhh...I delivered for the mafia and bagged an awesome bird too.  :)






Now the pressure was on for the rest of the boys!  Shawn and I had set the bar pretty high...a DOUBLE!  We didn't get it like we had planned, but we still did it!

MAY 1, 2010 TINA'S SURPRISE GOLDEN BIRTHDAY PARTY
Mom had planned to throw Tina a surprise golden birthday party at Kelly Lake.  Wonderful!  She had told me who she wanted to invite, and that Tina knew we planned to just do "dinner" that night.  So we set out to inviting her friends from work.  Only, she, herself, had invited a few herself! So she pretty much knew everyone coming.  LOL  Little shit...our plans were foiled!  We managed to round up a few more couples, and told her Alice and Clarence weren't coming due to a casino trip they were going on.  Her chin hit the floor when she heard that! Hahahaha!  Take that little sister!  I took it upon myself to get things in place for her cake.  I called Sheryl, the woman who had done Tina and Ry's wedding cake, as well as a birthday cake for Alice and Clarence and just last year, one for my dad's 60th birthday party.  They were always so yummy, that I had no doubt that's where I would go.  I arranged for Tanya and I to pick it up the Friday night before the party. No problem. Tanya and I were going on a secret mission!  When we got there, the cake wasn't at all how we had discussed, but it was still cute. Instead of the purple flowers and gold leaves, Sheryl made it look like two presents stacked on top of one another...which was cool.  And it had a big gold fondant bow on top. Previously, I had ordered a balloon bouquet from the Flower Shoppe and also arranged for Tanya to pick that up.  (I owe this girl big time).  Tanya texted me and told me she had gotten the bouquet, but when she stopped by her parents afterward, the balloon that was the centerpiece of the whole bouquet, a giant purple butterfly, had popped...NOOOO!!!  So after panicking and assuring Tanya it wasn't her fault...I called the Flower Shoppe in Gillett (as the one in OF was already closed).  The man there was SO nice.  He drove all the way to OF to see if there was another butterfly balloon.  And while there was not, he said there was a purple dragonfly.  So I took that.  He brought it back to Gillett where Alice and Clarence agreed to pick it up and bring it right to the party. WHEW.  Crisis averted---almost.

TO BE CONTINUED....


Tuesday, April 13, 2010

OOPSY

WILL UPDATE WITHIN 48 HOURS...that's my promise to YOU!

Friday, February 26, 2010

GOLD, SILVER, BRONZE....

Where has the month of February gone???  First the Super Bowl, which was a total letdown, and then the Daytona 500 which proved to be a good race, and now we are in the final stretch of the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, British Columbia Canada.
I am a huge fan of the Snow Cross, Half Pipe, Ski Cross, Aerials, Moguls, Hockey, Speed Skating and all the down hill skiing events,
My favorite Olympians are: Louie Vito, Shaun White, Lindsey Vonn, Julia Mancuso, Apolo Ohno, and Bode Miller. Just to name a few. :)
I'm grateful for these Olympic games as they have made the month fly by...just one more month of "winter" and we'll be marching into spring!
I cannot wait to get in the garden this year! I've got plans to make it even bigger and better than last year, which is hard to believe considering what we've achieved so far.  I'm anxious to see which of my perennials return, and hopefully this year, we don't have a killing frost in June, which completely desomated my peonies last year.
I'll be adding a special "Annual Bed" this year, which will contain bulbs that need to be extracted every fall and then replanted in spring.  Those varieties include: Gladiolas and Cana.  And as always, I will have my special "seeded flowers" area, where zinnias, cornflower, annual poppies and Bells of Ireland can flourish all summer long.
We'll be expanding our potato section this year as well.  Two varieties of sweet potato: Bearegard and Georgia Jet and two varieties of regular potatoes: Russet and Baby Reds.
I've also learned about onions and the importance between, Day Neutral, Long Day and Short Day.  Which explains why our onions turned soft as quickly as they did after harvesting last year.
This year, will be the second year the strawberries have been in the garden.  After planting them last spring, they spread quickly and were throwing runners everywhere! So this year, we should have our first good harvest.  I cannot wait for that!
With Pat going back to work this past Monday, the scheduling will be a little different, as he won't be home until 2pm every day.  So there will be a lot of hot afternoons in the garden in my future. :o)  But I can think of much worse things...like, winter extending into June....err...no, forget I ever even said that.
Gram remains in the nursing home, much to her dislike.  I haven't been to see her in awhile so I'm thinking that if dad doesn't bring her home this weekend, I'll have to drop by.  It's still really difficult seeing her there. I know she hates it, being packed in a tiny room with a complete stranger that she can't even hold a conversation with.  It's saddening to see her that way.
February 18 marked the 5 year anniversary of my choleycystectomy (an uber fancy word for the "ripping out of one's gall bladder), and also the 9 year anniversary of Dale Earnhardt's untimely death at the Daytona 500.  Both are dates I'd rather not recall.
My seizures seem to be settling down a bit, "knock on wood", although I haven't felt good for the greater portion of the month.  But if there is a "good" month to not feel well, I'd have to say February is the one since it's plagued with the coldest weather of the year and snow storms galore.  What better time to be laid up?? Right??
Well, I'm looking forward to spending some time with my besties in the near future and for the arrival of spring.  Soon I'll be making my famous bunny cake for Easter...it seems like just yesterday when I flubbed one up, hard core at that.  This year my first try will work, no doubt! Never make the same mistakes twice!
PS Good luck to the US Men's Hockey team...GO FOR THE GOLD!! WOOHOO!

Sunday, January 31, 2010

JANUARY IN REVIEW...

It's been a really long month. I'm eternally grateful that it's over. Between monster migraines and seizures and anonymous phone calls, I'm glad to be moving into a brand new month!
Last night was the sportsman banquet at Romy's. I got to see Bruce who greeted me with a big hug and a plea to come visit him on league night. I also ran into Lonn Demuth. Talk about a funny reunion! He too offered a "Lonn-sized" hug and words of astonishment over how much I've changed since he last saw me. (FYI: it has been about 12 years...LOL). Our group in attendance was Pat, Dad, Keith, Felicia, Kraig, Mark, Tom, Mary Jo, Scott and myself. Also in attendance was Chad "the psychotic cop". The little weasel was boring holes into my head all night. I tried not to look at him but the few times our eyes locked, there was nothing but sheer rage emanating from mine...the only issue was, he was returning the favor. However, I wasn't frightened. I was surrounded with a halo of friends and family. He couldn't have infiltrated that circle if he wanted to. Even though that banquet hall put at least 50 feet between us, it still felt as though there were only an inch separating us at times. Much to my amusement, Karleen got fat and she looks like pure hell. If only she had heeded my warnings...sucks to be her.
Even though no one in our group won anything, we still pigged out and laughed all night. The "Pabst Smeer" (Pabst Mirrors) was born and I left feeling overall content.
I'm bummed the Vikings didn't make the Superbowl. I even wore a Favre jersey on two occasions. I would have worn it with pride on Superbowl Sunday too, but that wasn't in the cards. Maybe next year...
Can't wait to see all that February holds for me.

Friday, January 8, 2010

NEW BEGINNING...

I can't believe it's already January...let alone, 2010.  I can honestly say this is not where I thought I would "be" at this point in my life.  I had a solid plan.  I was on track for SO LONG.  And I was SO CLOSE to having it "all".  And in just a SECOND it was torn away from me.  But I realize now that I have to fight to get it all back.  And I will.  It's my life.  Nobody can take that away from me.
Christmas was a huge disappointment...not the gifts though!!! Christmas Eve started out great.  Although the weather was, as they say, "FRIGHTFUL", Aunt Alice and Uncle Clarence were still wiling to make the drive and Tina and Ry were coming as well.  The REAL bummer of the holidays? Gramma was not home, nor could we safely GET her home because of the treacherous weather conditions.  I was furious about it.  No one should be alone on Christmas, and she WAS.  God, that just tears me up inside.  But I digress...
We all came together on the Eve of Christmas to celebrate like we always do.  The tree was lit, the gifts were wrapped with giant bows and festive paper...the food was making the house smell awesome and it was "TIME".  Tina and I exchanged our gifts first.  I really didn't share with ANYONE what I was getting everyone else...so this was a funny deal...I opened mine first.  VS jammies with matching slippers.  I could only LAUGH!  Because little did Tina (or anyone else) know that I had bought her the EXACT SAME THING!!!  WTF?!?! Do sisters mind's think alike or WHAT!??!  It was at that point that I started to feel "iffy".  To make a long story short, I spent the majority of the evening laying on my bedroom floor crying in pain.  No way was I going to the ER on Christmas...been there, done that...I was gonna power through this! And I did...but unfortunately, it was too late.  Auntie and Uncle had left for the evening feeling that I needed to rest.  Augh.   In the end, I finally made it to the couch around 9:00 or so and opened gifts with my parental units, Pat and Tina and Ry.  It wasn't the same without us all eating dinner together and playing games all night and searching for the "Christmas Pickle" hidden in the tree.  I felt robbed.  And yet, so blessed.  After the gift opening Tina and Ry also departed as the weather conditions were worsening.  So it was an early night.  Christmas Day was no better....the weather was indeed, horrible yet and we still couldn't make it to see Gram.  In the early evening while organizing all the gifts under the tree, I just burst into tears.  Pat asked me what was wrong and I couldn't even answer him.  Finally he said, "it's just everything, isn't it?"  I nodded.  He knows Christmas is my time to "shine."  This year that didn't happen. I was snuffed out like a friggin' candle.  So I just crawled into bed and decided it wasn't worth the fight.  So I slept.
The week between Christmas and New Year's was no picnic.  So many small things happened.  Like my BlackBerry crapped out on me and Cellcom was making it utterly impossible for me to keep my professional demeanor while dealing with them.  It all ended with me stomping out of the place with a new plan in place.  And low and behold, it worked.  For the hours of struggling I did with the (alleged) "customer service" department in DePere, all it took was a short explanation and 20 minutes for one other Cellcom dealer to have me fully hooked up with an UPGRADED BlackBerry and all the accessories.  I mean, I just don't undestand how two separate establishments, who essentially, work for the same goal, can be complete polar opposites when it comes to the way they handle their customers.  All I can say is "bye bye Depere" and "hello P-town!" Granted that was a really vague explanation of the events that occurred, but trust me when I say, it was a helluva day!
New Year's Eve was originally planned to be spent at a hotel near home in a jacuzzi suite.  But due to my desire to buy the new BlackBerry instead, we cancelled those plans and decided to stay home with mom and have dinner with her, since Daddy was working all night.  I mean, why should she be alone on New Year's Eve?  So instead, I planned to make a scrumptious steak dinner, for mom, Pat and myself.  It worked out well...daddy went off to work around 4:00 and then I began.  Oven roasted potatoes, tenderloin steaks and sauteed 'shrooms and onions.  Around 6:30 we sat down to dinner and it was AWESOME! YAY ME!  I love being all "chef-ee" as anyone who knows me at all will tell you.  I ate way too much and then decided to work it off by playing my new Wii games.  Pat and I did the Sport Resort archery for an hour or so, and then we moved on to Mario Galaxy, which, really takes a lot of strategy...I mean, between the two of us, we had a hard time getting out of some of those worlds.  It's nothing like the classic Nintendo version that came out in the early 90's.  No no...this is all 3-dimensional and just INSANE!!!!  At first Pat thought the game was "childish" but let me tell ya...he's the one who eventually was in control when he killed off our last life.  So now we have to start allllllllllllll over again! BUMMER!  Anyway, he hit the hay early because he had been bobcat hunting all day with my bro, and mom fell asleep early as well, since she had a Tom Collins earlier...so I was left all alone to watch the mighty ball drop in NYC at midnight.  I had put in a movie that would conveniently end about 15 minutes before the ball drop.  It all went down and really...nothing felt any different.  I was just TIRED.  So I went to bed.
Of course I'm omitting a couple things here...after all the pain and suffering on Christmas Eve...I had a seizure...and also about an hour and a half into New Year's Day (per Pat's recollections) I had another one.  I don't remember ANYTHING.  It's odd.  I always "know" when I've had one when I wake up the next day.  Everything is really "foggy"...like if I TRY to remember it's just hazy and there are just flashes of memories.  And then there's the pain....good grief the pain of feeling like I've been hit by a Mack truck.  And an overwhelming feeling of weakness.  But I came around pretty quickly New Year's Day.  I got up and watched the Rose Bowl parade, and I even started to undecorate the family tree in the living room.   Of course those two small events wore me out and that was about all I achieved that day. 
Since then, everything has been fairly quiet.  Which is good.  I enjoy "quiet".  I don't enjoy the cold weather or the loads of "white dirt" the keep getting dumped on us, but we only have a few more months of this and then spring is upon us.  Since I'm pretty much cooped up for that time, I plan to do A LOT of baking.  Experimental bread making and some pretty fantastic cakes as well.  I will definitely post pics of the stuff that turns out GOOD.  If you don't see any pics or posts of my creations, well...then you know things did NOT go well and it's probably going to be a touchy subject with me at best.
With that, I will say this...I believe in my heart that 2010 (twenty-ten) will be a MUCH better year than 2009.  IT HAS TO BE.  There is no other option.  I have a sense of renewal and my ambition to get to my goals in life have never been higher.  I have been working on a list of things I want to accomplish in 2010 and I will post that in a future entry...I even asked for suggestions from my friends via my Facebook page.  Although some of them were fairly goofy, it was a fun thing to do.  And one of my major goals? To keep up with this blog a lot better...I will MAKE time for this just as you have to make time for everything else that is important in your life.  Priorities, priorities, priorities...and my motto (as my friend once told me) "work first, then play."  Those words ring out in my mind alllllllllllllllllllll the time.  So, thanks my friend...you know who you are!
Happy New Year everyone!  Cheers to 2010 and a decade full of promise, hope, happiness and love!