Sunday, September 13, 2009

Hiatus

Wow! I have not posted to this blog in an amazing amount of time. And I'm not sure if I'm back or just easing back into it slowly.

Last April, my husband and I separated and we filed for divorce. I've been trying to get my life back on track in another direction and emotionally.. I just was not into blogging anymore. I slowly but surely start to feel like myself more and more each day and hopefully I'll have things to blog about and get back into reading all those blogs that I always enjoyed. Bear with me.

Thursday, April 09, 2009

A girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do

I finally tackled an item on my to-do list that I've been avoiding. I have an old computer that I've been holding onto until I had time to dismantle it so that I could remove the hard drive and destroy it. You don't want anyone getting a hold of your personal stuff, you know. The hard drive is the small silver box laying to the right of my dismantled computer.

Apparently, erasing your hard drive does not actually erase the hard drive. Formatting your hard drive only makes it so that your computer loses the directions to your information and therefore isn't able to retrieve it. In both of these cases, your information is still there and retrievable by hackers.

Here is the hard drive after being opened and that round silver disk is what I'm trying remove and destroy. I drilled about 7 holes in the hard disk and then beat it up with the claw side of a hammer. During this process, I found out why it's called a hard disk. I had to bang on it with all my strength just to make a dent. Hopefully I've done enough damage to keep any potential hackers from getting a hold of my goodies. We wouldn't want that.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

A favorite spot

You can't open a drawer around here without someone jumping in and getting comfortable.

Sunday, April 05, 2009

I love Oklahoma in the Springtime

Isn't Spring the greatest? Its new and fresh and everything comes to life with a renewed sense of being. No, it's not the plants I'm actually talking about, it's me. I've been in a winter funk for the past month with no motivation to do much of anything that took any effort.









Then Spring comes along and changes everything. A few of my plants that are coming up are my Hosta, Elephant Ears and the Stonecrop. The Clematis has new leaves and its flowers will soon follow. I'm worried about my Passion Vine but since it seems to be partial to warmer weather, I think I'll just not worry about it too much just yet and see how things play out.








All of this new growth has caused me to feel energized and ready to take on a new project. But I need a project and since Spring is what gets me moving my groove thing, I'll dedicate this project to the outdoors. I have most of this week off so I've purchased a few new plants to replace the ones that I lost last year. I'll get them planted and then I'll sit outside and admire my work, because that's what I like to do... admire...my...work.

Thursday, April 02, 2009

We have issues

I'm here to confess a moment that is directly related to me inheritating a family gene that I like to call "white trashicus". This gene has not been proven to be in Ray's family history but it must be there somewhere, or else I'm contagious.

We moved into this house ten plus years ago and shortly after, a storage building was built onto our property to protect our garden equipment. Ray bought paint for the shed that was suppose to match our house, but since he is color blind, it wasn't exactly a matching color. We had a blue storage building to go with our gray house. I will say that our gray house does have an ever-so-slight blue tint to the color, but it is still clearly gray.

This big blue eyesore sat to the back of our property but that didn't keep it from being in plain site of all our neighbors no matter where they live. Our poor neighbors. As for my family, we were immune to how ugly this looked because genetics made it possible for us to look the other way and forget. Much like one might see in one of those trashy type yards, it was our rusty car on blocks of cement.

But finally, after 10 long years and some available time during Spring Break, Ray and Cody repainted our little shed a beautiful, perfectly-matched-to-our-house, gray paint. And now when I come up the driveway, I can be proud when I see the little gray shed.

Everything just seems right in the world now. It's very healing.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Dog jail

It's jail for dogs. At least it looks that way. This is where the girls usually go for refuge when they need it. As you can see, the door is open but it looks like they should have metal mugs in their paws, banging on the bars.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Skelly Lodge

I had a wedding reception to go to this past weekend for the daughter of a close friend. I didn't get any pictures of wedding guests or the wedding couple for that matter because I was too busy visiting and eating. My, oh my, did I eat. I think this amount of eating has recently been featured on the news and referred to as "binge eating". I did NOT however partake in purging, although I probably would have slept better and felt better if I had.







Aside from eating, I did make time to get pictures of the scenery around Skelly Lodge where this reception was held. The view was amazing and you could see for miles, literally. The huge boulders pictured here were a photo opportunity waiting to happen, and many of the guests and wedding party took full advantage. Even though the trees had no leaves it was still a very picturesque place.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Inspector Clouseau

Since the weather had warmed up some and since Mojo was standing at the backdoor, I decided to let him go out and investigate the back porch.










He didn't waste anytime checking things out and making sure that things were as they should be in this outdoor space. He did a close inspection of the soil quality in one of my pots. I'm pretty sure I heard him say it was good to go.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Geocache first-timers

Cody and I ventured out on Sunday to look for geocaches in the area. This was something that I've been curious about for the last couple of years after reading about it on an online news site. The appeal for me is that it takes place outdoors and I love to be outdoors if the weather is nice.








Just so happens, it was a very nice day and we had nothing better to do anyway. So with my camera and GPS in tow, we headed out and begin our day of discovery. The inside of trees make good hiding spots, especially when it is surrounded by broken limbs. Cody loved it and didn't seem as apprehensive about walking into certain wooded areas as I was.










Our first cache contained tattoos and other miscellaneous and very small items. We exchanged a tattoo but on the next few caches, we only left our name and the date of our discovery. I'll be going online to visit the geocache site to leave a comment about each place that I visited and to let others know that there is a geocache still to be found.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Viva Las Vegas...hopefully!

So Caitlin and I are leaving for Las Vegas and we have checked in at the airport, go through security and are waiting at the gate when an announcement comes over the speakers that our plane has arrived but it's at the end of the runway where it sits because the pilot noticed when he touched down that he couldn't control the steering of the plane. It takes them about 30 minutes to tow the plane up to the gate so that they can assess the problem and let us know when our flight would be leaving. The end result is that our flight was cancelled and they found a plane in Dallas to take us to our destination, but not until the next morning.

Caitlin will miss her first game in this tournament along with one other teammate who was also on that flight and since our team had a couple of other players that were unable to go on this trip, her team now doesn't have enough players for that game.

I hope things go better once we get to the airport this morning.

Friday, March 06, 2009

WTF???!!!

I received my Social Security statement in the mail this past week because it's that time of year when I get this reminder that my birthday is coming up in a couple of months.

Anyhoo...did anyone else receive their statement recently and compare it to last year's statement, only to find out that if you retire at the age of 67 you are now eligible for a lower amount of income than what the previous year statement indicated? Even though you have now contributed a whole year more of social security taxes? RaggleFaggleFrickinFruck?!!

Thursday, March 05, 2009

I won a moisturizing kit!

Yesterday, I received a wonderful package in the mail from Jessica at A Moxie Mom. I entered a drawing on her blog and won!

It's a Dermalogica Skin Kit for that troublesome dry skin that many of us suffer from daily and especially during the winter months. I can't wait to use this kit. Thanks Jessica!!

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

New books

I just finished reading "Outlander" by Diana Gabaldon and I'm now starting on her second book in the series called "Dragonfly in Amber". I can't wait to find out what happens next with the two main characters, Claire and Jamie.

I also purchased an audiobook to add to my Ipod so that I'll have something to listen to on the airplane ride to Las Vegas that I'll be taking next week. There is a showcase soccer tournament there that Caitlin's team is attending.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Why does shopping feel so good?

Hayden's birthday is tomorrow and this past week I went shopping for the clothes that he asked for and I also ordered a few items online. Shopping for him is like shopping for a daughter. He likes clothes and likes the latest styles with a variety of color.

I wasn't able to do this for my oldest son, Dylan, because he wore athletic shorts and t-shirts to school every day all year round, no matter how warm or cold. And the only colors that Dylan would wear were white, gray or something dark. On one hand, this was a good thing because his clothes weren't costing us an arm and a leg; but it was also soooooo boring.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Update on my gold quest

Remember when I sent in my gold jewelry to see how much it was worth? Well, it wasn't as much as I would have liked but then again, I know nothing about the value of gold. The day after I received my check there was a news segment on tv talking about how the value of gold is down these days and to wait until it rises again before selling. Too late!

I have the option to return the check and have my gold returned if I'm not ready to sell or to deposit the check and consider it a done deal. I'm considering my options.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

I heard a banging noise

Cody left one of his Christmas presents in the pocket of jeans and I washed it in the washing machine this past weekend. Dried it too. Ipods aren't meant to be washed.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Nap

I was sitting on the couch doing some work on my laptop when I looked up and took notice of my cats. One was to my left and one was to my right.










I just thought it was funny that they were both covering their eyes. They were almost perfect bookends of each other.

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Where do I sign?

This is one of those things you don't see everyday so of course I had to try and get a shot of it. You know a person really supports our troops when he lets anyone and everyone sign their name to his truck with a sharpie.


Thursday, February 05, 2009

Selling some gold

I was watching Rachael Ray the other day and she had a segment about a company that buys gold jewelry called Red Swan. You send in your jewelry and they mail you a check. If you aren't satisfied, you contact them and send the check back and they return your jewelry.

So I've decided to try it. I have a couple of pieces of old jewelry that probably aren't worth much but I'm curious to see what I can get. Plus I'm not attached to the jewelry that I've chosen to send in. I haven't worn any of it in over 20 years. One piece is a necklace that an old boyfriend gave to me and then I have a ring that had the tiniest diamond in it once but the diamond came loose and I lost it. Those two pieces along with a gold chain is what I've chosen to send in and see what happens. The people at Red Swan will probably open up my box and laugh when they assess the value or they'll be mad that they paid the postage to have me waste their time. Ha!

I have a nice pair of earrings that I considered sending in but I'm too attached, even though I don't like to wear gold jewelry. Afterall, silver is "da bomb" these days. I also can't part with my "add-a-bead" gold and lapis bead necklace because it was such a popular trend when I was in high school and I remember returning to the store often to purchase more beads everytime I had enough money. Do you remember doing this? Anyway, this necklace stays. What if I need this piece of jewelry as proof that certains things in my life really did occur when I'm old and reflecting on my past.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

I want to be just like her!

I just had to post this picture of my Mema. I haven't seen her in many years and I've been asking for a picture for a while now, but since my dad doesn't own a camera it has taken some time. He took this picture of her with his camera phone last weekend. She still drives her car and gets it washed each week. Her and her sister(good genes in that family) take trips together when they can and she reads so much that I'm sure the library is having a hard time keeping her in books. She is pictured here working on a crossword puzzle which she starts and completes daily. All of my childhood memories of her are special. When Tanya and I were little girls, we LOVED staying overnight with her and my Pepa on their farm. This special woman also turned 98 years young this past January. I think she's incredibly special.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

You couldn't pay me to drink it

Have you ever had a coffee that was so strong tasting that after you took a sip, it tasted like you just smoked a cigarette? Ok so it wasn't a coffee, it was one of those coffee type drinks with added flavor and a fancy smancy name. Anyway, I had that happen earlier this week when I was sampling a Caramel Latte. Uhh...thank you, McDonalds?

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

The Ice Storm Cometh

The ice storm came in waves. It started with a slight coating of ice on the cars. But then as the frozen rain continued and temperatures dropped, our streets and roads were coated as well. Sleet fell through the night and there was a layer on top of the ice. This was a blessing in disguise because it supplied the traction needed on the roads so that those who needed to get to Lowes… could. :-)













By the afternoon, we were well coated with sleet and snow and the roads were a slippery mess mostly because of the surface being abused all day. This picture was taken with my cell phone... while driving. I call it multi-tasking. Some call it risky. It was a little more harrowing getting home and there was some slippage and fishtailing involved here and there. Fun to some, I’m sure, but NOT to this gal. We have too many hills to climb in this area and midway up one of them I questioned whether I was going to make it. Ray says he did the same thing.








We have a pin oak in front of our house that is clinging to it's leaves from the previous summer and will probably hang onto them until the new ones begin to emerge in the Spring. It's an ugly object to view all winter but now with this nice new coat of ice, it's a look that seems to work.









All of the foliage in the area takes on a new look and as much as I despise the ice, I am in awe of the beauty it supplies.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Honestly, I'm honored.

I've been presented with this award from Dawn at Dawn's Diversions. We've been blog friends for a while but just recently met face to face at the blog night that I attended. She was the organizer of this event and invited many Oklahoma blogger friends. It was a fun evening and it was great of her to do it.

As the recipient of the award, I have to share 7 things about myself. Finding 7 things that you don't already know about me might be a challenge but I'm up for it. And then again, I may have mentioned these things already, because I'm pretty much an open book.

I also need to share this award with 7 others and those others are:
Desert Trivia
Chickens in the Road
The Hunter's Wife
Decisionally Challenged
4 Lettre Words
A Heart for Home
It's a woman's world

1. When I get one of my kids alone, I tell them they are my favorite. They've all heard this at one time or another and I think they are on to my secret.

2. I was a very wild (or stupid)teenager and did things that a typical teenager doesn't typically do. Things I will take with me to my grave. Needless to say, I watch my kids closely.

3. I've dressed up like Miss Piggy, a gorilla and a clown to deliver balloon bouquets for a place I worked many years ago.

4. I take notice of people's hands because you can tell if they have ugly toes by the way their fingers look. I don't want to look at ugly toes.

5. I'm pretty sure it doesn't show but I can be quite the bitch. If I don't like you, you probably already know it because I don't try to hide it.

6. I love to spend time with my closest friends because I've never laughed so much with anyone else as I do with them. I feel blessed everytime I'm with them.

7. My favorite thing to eat is not sweets. I would rather have regular food over any kind of sweets. I love casseroles, mexican food, italian food, food food. Yep, I love food, but sweets is not on the top of my list.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Reverse Psychology

There's an ice storm in our forecast for Monday and Tuesday. Not the news I wanted to hear when those are the two days that I report to work this week. Not only will I drive to the other side of town over slippery, icy roads but I will also trek across an icy parking lot that is free of any hand holds if by chance I might lose my footing.

It seems that the more I hate winter, the more I become a target for this frigid abuse. If I'm being punished for my strong hostility towards this colder season then I'm willing to change for the greater good. From this day forward, I will "adore" winter.

Winter creed:
I'll embrace the prickly coldness of its winds and envelop the stings of its icy rain. I will laugh at it's playful attempts to bring me down on my rear. I will prevail.

After all, it's only 54 days until Spring.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Oklahoma Hoedown

I went to a local pub/grill last night, called the Fox and the Hound, for a dinner with several local bloggers. We were expecting around 20 women and actually had about 15 show up, so it was a really good turn out for this event. note: If I get any names wrong in this post, please forgive my memory.

Some of my "getting aquainted" time was spent with these girls, Jerri Lynn, Georgie and Dawn. Jerri Lynn and Georgie live in the Tulsa area and Dawn lives in Owasso, closer to my neck of the woods. You can't see it but Georgie is wearing a shirt that says "I heart Dawn" made by her daughter. We all love Dawn for putting this event together. I found out that Jerri Lynn is from Ft. Worth so with both of us being from Texas, we talked about things that Texas has that Oklahoma doesn't have like good mexican food, barbecue and Dairy Queen. And what a coincidence that we both have family in Midland.







Here is Dawn with Michelle and Jessica. I enjoyed meeting Michelle and finding out how her and Dawn became friends. Both of them love blogging and photography. Jessica was very nice and I look forward to reading her blog.









I was also able to visit with Melinda and Maggie who are pictured here with me. I'm the one who looks awkward because I'm the most unphotogenic person. But I digress.
Can you believe that Melinda drove over 2 hours to attend this dinner? Now that's impressive! As for Maggie, her blog has been nominated for one of Oklahoma's best looking blogs and it's well deserved. In fact many of these bloggers have been nominated in one catagory or another.

It was a pleasant night and not one of these people appeared to be "abinormal" (you know... Young Frankenstein... 0k....nevermind). I was really pleased at how nice all of these girls were and I'm looking forward to getting to know them better.

Friday, January 23, 2009

And you just now noticed?

Hayden informed me that he needed a new pair of shoes because his were feeling too small. So after school, we went to our local shoe store and found him a nice pair of athletic shoes. We threw away his size 6 shoes that were too small with a hole forming in the toe area and he walked out of the store wearing his new, size 9 Adidas. Yes, I would say that his shoes might have been feeling a bit small.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Winter Ball 2009

Caitlin attended the Winter ball this past weekend with her boyfriend and about 6 other close friends. She enjoys almost any reason to dress up and go out in public. Their plans were to go to a movie after the dance and then go "glow" bowling at the local bowling alley, but they weren't able to go bowling because they attended the late movie and these kids have curfews... as all kids their age should.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Are we there yet?

We had a bit of cold weather last week and even saw a little snow. Luckily it wasn't anything major and didn't stick around for more than a day. In fact this past Sunday was incredibly nice with temperatures in the high 50's. It felt good to go outside and stand in the sunlight. I like to imagine that Spring is near and the first signs of it are appearing, even though that is clearly not true.

One of our customers at Lowes mentioned that he could remember one April here that received a terrible snow storm. I had to walk away and just not think about it.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

My irrational side

I decided to take a little hiatus from the blog world this past week and focus on doing other things like chillin', kicking back, relaxing and taking it easy.

Although it's not easy to relax when you are cultivating a science experiment in your backyard. I decided to partially uncover the swimming pool to check on the water since it's been almost 4 months since we covered it for the winter. I peeled back the cover and noticed that the water was a little dark but I figured the pool cover was the cause so I peered down through the water trying to locate the drain at the bottom and couldn't see it. I could however see the pool light and with this object to focus on, I could see that the water was definitely not in good condition and even a bit of a green tint. The water in my swimming pool has been infected with an algae and has started to turn green and just the thought of the water turning dark and murky soon makes a chill run down my back. Not only that, I'm having swimming pool dreams where I'm removing the cover to find out what lies beneath. I'd be lying if I said I'm not at all freaked out by this.

For as long as I can remember, I've had this water phobia focused mainly on plumbing problems that involve uncontrollable water issues or water flow. So if my toilet overflows, I remain calm, rational and deal with it like an adult, but it spooks me to my core!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Dumbbells are not so dumb

I started working out with my bff a few months ago on her bowflex machine. It was a really good workout and it was fun at the same time. When the holidays crept in, it was a little more difficult to find the time or motivation to work out.

I've noticed the past few weeks that I haven't felt as good or slept as well as I had been and I think it might have something to do with not working out for so long. So this week I've been trying to workout with my dumbbells and I even did my 8 minutes abs, buns and arms. I'm a little sore today so I'm taking the day off, but I'm glad that I have a few days of workouts behind me.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Delicious

The past few days, I've been trying to organize my recipes and find more for my collection and this is the magazine that I consider my recipe bible. I like them because they don't use those fancy ingredients that I never have on hand. Just simple recipes that are easy to make. I love getting things organized. It makes me tingle.

Monday, January 05, 2009

My white trash is showing

My next door neighbor teasingly asked me when we were getting my car repaired because he was a little concerned that I was making our neighborhood look bad driving this unsightly mess around. I reminded him that I've never denied being white trash trying to fit into an upper class environment and right now, my white trash is showing.

I'll be taking my car into the body shop this week and finally getting it repaired from the damage that was done in San Antonio. We normally would have taken care of this already but we had to wait for the insurance company to actually make contact with their client to determine who was liable. Puhhlease!! We weren't even in our car and they need to verify who was liable? I hate insurance companies and thier stupid mindedness! They love to take our money every month but their butt tightens up when they need to give a little back.

Friday, January 02, 2009

Beware: may cause cavities

I got up this morning and started a crock pot of stew and then proceeded to make a rich fudge from the back of the Hershey's Cocoa label. My mother has made this recipe many times and I had her teach me how many years back. I decide this time to make it the way the Hershey's label suggested and all went well until I got to the end.

Hersheys says that after you reach a certain temperature to remove from heat and let the fudge cool to 110 degrees, a temperature I never reached because it started hardening up. I went ahead and added pecans, which is an adjustment my mother made to the recipe and an important one, and then began to stir it. This was an incredible struggle and took lots of muscle power. I was able to get it onto my platter but unable to spread it out because it set almost immediately. In the end it was still quite delicious.

I used a candy thermometer this time and it sure made things easier. My mother had taught me to watch for a glossy-ness in the chocolate and if you put a small amount in cold water and you were able to form a ball with it, then it was ready. I was always able to make the fudge successfully but never felt comfortable deciding when the chocolate was glossy, so the thermometer was a great tool to use. Here's the recipe but I've altered it to the way my mother taught me. It's very rich and chocolatey, so if you think you can handle it then try it and let me know what you think.

Classic Rich Cocoa Fudge
3 c. sugar
2/3 c. cocoa
1/8 t. salt
1 1/2 c. milk
1/2 stick of butter
1 t. vanilla
1 c. pecan pieces

Butter a large plate or platter.

Mix sugar, cocoa and salt, in a heavy 4 qt saucepan, until all lumps are gone. Stir in milk.

Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture comes to a full rolling boil. Boil, without stirring, until mixture reaches 234 degrees on candy thermometer or until small amount of mixture dropped into very cold water forms a soft ball which flattens when removed from water. (Thermometer should not rest on bottom of pan)

Remove from heat. Add butter and let melt. DO NOT STIR. When butter is melted, add nuts and stir. Spread quickly onto prepared platter; cool completely. Cut into squares.

Thursday, January 01, 2009

It's January 1st, 2009

Happy New Year!!

Hope everyone had a safe and happy New Years Eve. I made salsa, a bean dip to have with chips and cookies that failed miserably. I think it might have been the shortage of baking soda. The cookies were delicious but flat.

This year I actually stayed up until midnight. Well... sort of. I think I might have dozed off a time or two while watching tv, but I was up and about at 5 minutes before midnight and stayed that way until the clock struck twelve. I quickly found myself in bed shortly after where I had no problem finding dreamland.