Monday, January 30, 2012


It's just a little bit on the side of my mouth.  A little jelly.  You probably wouldn't even notice it, mostly because you do not have any and even if you did notice mine, it's not really noticeable enough to actually point it out.  But I'll just say it -
YES, I do have a little jelly.

JEALOUS, I am of your good fortune, good luck, good news, happiness, joy and upcoming adventures.

But it's fine, the jelly doesn't taste bad at all, in fact, I'm kind of happy to have it.  It reminds me that my time is coming, and when I take the biggest bite out of life, there will be a little bit of jelly on the corner of your mouth and I won't even glance at it.....

It's not a bad thing, a little jelly.  It's actually a good reminder - keeps you grounded.  Reminds you to stay in check and always make sure you aren't walking around making a fool out of yourself with that jelly all over.

On that note here are some great things to be just a little "jelly" over:

You saw something no one would ever believe...

An inanimate object made you laugh today.....

You got lost, WHERE??

a CLEAN garage, all organized and amazing....

Somebody found your good spot

You enjoy yourself without ever caring what anyone else thinks!

Your friends are larger than life!

Thursday, January 26, 2012


I am SO impressed. Take a look here:

This. Is. My. Nephew.
He's 16

We share the same taste in music.  We do not share artistic talent.  I have none.

and a little quickie:

Do you remember my Italian visitor last year at work?  (read all about it) Well he came back today with a friend -Massimo. (Love the name!)  No one had to leave due to the flu, BUT I did have a very awkward Italian greeting moment. It goes like this:

The bell at the front desk rings.

I approach knowing it will be our Italian client.

It is him and his Italian partner.  Dressed in full winter parkas and scarves BECAUSE weather in Cleveland this time of year - SUCKS and it was the same last year as it is this year.  (This is what I hate about living where I do. - I personally LOVE where I live. I LOVE winter, LOVE snow. But, EVERY SINGLE time someone from out of town visits, the weather puts it's worst foot forward and there is no amount of convincing people that its a beautiful place when their shoes are covered in salt.)

Younger than me, nice looking Italian man 1, approaches with his hand extended.  I extend mine. He leans in for....
The Kiss/Kiss!

1.  We DID spend valuable time in the car together last year.
2.  I have watched this foreign greeting on many a TV show/Movie.
3.  I should have been calm, cool, collected and ABLE to perform the double cheek kiss!

Instead, I am awkwardly tossing my hair into his face and then again when he leans to the other side, while his Italian partner is observing, telling me "now the other side" and watching my face which is making an excruciating expression because I am wishing I could sink into a hole.

Needless to say, the Italian partner just shook my hand.  No Kiss/Kiss.  BUT even worse, I kind leaned towards him because I thought I would get it right the second time.  Instead, I just looking like a loon sticking my cheek out and then pulling it back in while I ferociously shook his hand realizing he was not about to Kiss/Kiss this crazy girl. ( I felt so LAME )

Picture a horrible awkward grimace on this girl's face - That's ME!

Where is the black hole when you need it? WHERE?

Ciao, for now my friends.....

Sunday, January 22, 2012


Why I love Winter

There is a period of time every season when I go through this "thing".  It's not depression.  It's not anxiety. It's not boredom really.  Maybe it is a little bit of all of those things?
The problem is that I thrive on change.  Throw an obstacle my way and although I will fuss at first, deep down, I love it.  So when things aren't monumentally changing, I am a little lost.  But when I think about the things I do in a week's time, I realize things are always changing and I am always doing, yet I still feel RESTLESS.
That's it -  RESTLESS is a great way to describe how I feel.

I have a hard time concentrating on one particular thing and when I do try to do something in particular, my mind just goes in a million directions.  I can't just clean the house because then I feel like I should be playing with the kids.  I can't play with the kids, because I worry about the mess in the house.

Before Christmas, I got my nails done (which is a rare treat because I am hopeless at ever having nice nails unless professionally done and then they last 5 days nicely but that's it.)  I spend the majority of the time fussing over my nails, examining them, picking them, looking at them, touching them etc......
That is how I feel.  I should be satisfied and enjoy the moment, but instead, I have to pick it apart until it changes and then I have something to complain about/fix/obsess over.....

I dream of having a day with no plans or things that HAVE to be done.  Saturday we had NOTHING planned. I cleaned the house.  I was miserably restless.

Today we were out of the house by noon despite the freezing temps.  We toured an open house -a huge old Victorian that has been sitting empty on our town square for several years.  It was freezing and not as exciting as I thought it would be.  The kids all have friends over and I am starting to wander restlessly through the house - folding a load of laundry here, checking my email, deciding to crack open one of the many un-read books and then remembering the water ring on the table I could wipe up and picking up cat food crumbs on the floor on the way there.

Is there such a thing as relax - ADHD or inability to be LAZY?

I think it has a lot to do with the weather. (cold, wet, snowy)
The time of year - January.  What IS there to do exciting in this month for ANYONE?
(if there is something, maybe don't tell me what it is.......)

The lack of funds. (We just had to buy glasses for three and a set of contacts) (Two of the three are 9 and 12 - NOT a good Mom moment - they were half blind....)

But even if the weather was amazing and money were no object, WHAT would I be doing?

When I ask myself - "What do you REALLY want to do?"  the only thing I can think of is socializing. Just being with a group of people and hanging out - laughing, playing games, talking.

But ideally not at my house - because then I'll worry about getting it cleaned up before, during and after.

Looks like a great place to party to me! Except, I kind of hate when the snow gets messed up in the yard.......... :O

I am a real pain in the ass - but hey, I bet I made you feel slightly better about yourself and if so, then I have managed to to do ONE thing today!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

The Sewing Machine Debacle

Debacle is such a fun word isn't it?  It's so much better than drama, or situation.  A Debacle  - a combination of trouble, mess, problem that you can't make your way out of.

I digress (another good word) -

My amazing 12 year old daughter who has a heart of gold, and the creative spirit of Martha Stewart (jury still out that she is actually MY kid and was not switched at birth) asked to LEARN to SEW for her birthday gift.  (SEE WHAT I MEAN? as a gift, she asked to learn something.) 

She has the unfortunate pleasure of having a Birthday immediately after Christmas when we are our poorest. Mostly because we do a generous job of playing the Clause's.  For that reason she also had a hard time thinking of a gift she really wanted.

So when she mentioned the sewing thing, I went in the direction of: Have to buy her a Sewing Machine, and she probably was going in the complete opposite direction of: I really want you to pay for sewing lessons at a place where the women all know how to sew and they can actually teach me to make real tangible things.

I did some research and found the machine, a book and a starter kit for a reasonable price.  Thankfully just before I hit the BUY button my sister-in-law mentioned that she had a machine she did not use and it was a step up from the one I was going to buy.  This way we could try it out and I could spend money on the fun stuff like material, patterns, supply case, and pretty much anything she would need to make me a whole new wardrobe.

When I got the machine, I went on-line and printed the manual and put it in a pretty binder.  I set up a little sewing machine station for her and organized the threads, scrap material, some other tools that I have no idea what they are used for and called her down to see her birthday surprise. (Author's note: I am good at ONE category of things - WORKING, so I can organize it all but after that, it's a hopeless DEBACLE.)

We sat down and I told her I would read the instructions and she could get the machine threaded and set up.

Long story short -

She left about an hour in, to "finish homework", and I sat at that godforsaken table with that godforsaken machine and read that godforsaken piece of doo-doo manual for 5 hours!!  At one point my son gave it a try because I forced him to take Home EC in 8th grade and he sewed an apron, but he left after 15 minutes mumbling about You Tube and then the hubby ventured in and said he was going to Google it and watch a You Tube video about it.
WHAT THE........

A few days later my daughter's friend came over, sat down, threaded the needled, got the machine to run and they wandered off, while I stood there picking my jaw up off the floor.

A little sewing history:
I took a crochet class in grade school.  For one year our school thought it would be fun to offer extra-curriculars throughout the year.  I took Crochet for three days.  I then moved into the Baton Twirling classes and two days later, I landed in Sign Language 101. I can now proudly sign the alphabet.

My Mom was a hook rug expert.  I even did some hook-rugging for a few years.  I got pretty good at it.  Unfortunately, I was like 8 or 9 and it was the late 70's and hook rugs kind of fell off the list of home trends.

In college during one particular snowy winter my roommates and I tried needle point for 8 hours straight.  Then we drank away our sorrows and forgot everything including what needle point even was.

I used to take my dry cleaning to the sweetest Asian dry cleaning family.  Whenever I was missing a button, they sewed a new one on for me.  Sometimes they didn't match, but I wasn't about to complain.  It beat having to wear my shirts in a unique way for lack of available buttons.

Most recently, I have at least 2 pairs of pants that had to be hemmed.  One hem is held up by Scotch Tape and the other is held up with safety pins.  I couldn't even get the no-sew stuff to work right.

SEW........ I mean  SO, I'm thinking  summer sewing classes are in store for my birthday girl.  I can also make sure she has the cutest sewing center ever.  But beyond that, I have been defeated by a sewing machine.

What I pictured as the kind of supplies she would need

How I pictured her room would look by this summer.


Saturday, January 14, 2012

Meet my friends Alone and Lonely.

You can eat a home cooked spaghetti dinner at a red vintage table.  Frank Sinatra playing in the background.  

You can be in a warm and cozy home with a little Christmas tree still lit up in the kitchen. Sounds of laughter in the background.

You can be in a room surrounded with pictures of loved ones no longer living. The hum of a dishwasher and washing machine in the background.

You can be in the dark in the softly falling snow with warm lights glowing from the windows. No sounds but your own breath in the crisp air.

You may not be alone.  But you can be lonely.

You can make the decision to swallow your pride. To ignore the chaos and clutter. To know that being good at working hard may not make you Mom or Wife of the year.  You can swallow the criticism and complaining and decide to enjoy the moments you have knowing that someday you will be alone and lonely.

You can decide to love yourself, the person you have become despite the mistakes.  The mistakes may not be big life threatening ones. You are not alone and you can decide to not feel the lonely.

You can turn the sad off and be happy.  No one will mind.  They prefer the happy anyway.

You can be a mess and be funny. You don’t always have to get it right or have it perfectly clean.  Because either way you do it you can always be friends with lonely another day.  Lonely will always be there for you later.

Don't worry, alone has been one of my very closest friends keeping me company over the years.  I have taken comfort in being alone, gotten mad at it, and embraced it.  It's not a bad thing.  Plus, it's good to visit it every once in awhile - it puts things into perspective, makes you see yourself better than looking into a mirror. Sometimes you choose being alone and sometimes you feel lonely, but sometimes you don't feel the loneliness at all.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

RV's and Movies

How is that I have LESS time NOW than I did before the holidays??
Bad news - no time for blogging.
Good news - I have a ton of sticky notes all over the place with blogger fodder.
But the problem with me is that I can't just leave something unfinished.  I started this post over the weekend and I don't really like it but I can't just leave it in the DRAFTs section......

On Saturday night we watched three movies in a row. YES, I stayed awake for THREE movies and there were no interruptions.  (only one kid -the quietest one was home at the time, but Still!)

It could be that I was still all psyched up from my long day at the RV show. No, I don't have one -but I know people who do....
Some KNOW people in the Mafia, I KNOW people who own RV's......

Not nearly as boring as it may sound to some.  My brother and sister in law are RV connoisseurs, so it was fun to go with some experts.  If you know me a vintage travel trailer is on my bucket list, but WOW, I really had no idea what RV’s have gotten up to in the past many years (that I wasn’t paying attention). 

I really don’t consider myself a camper.  However, every time I have visited my brother’s family “camping” (in complete RV style - Bigger Fridge than in my house, big screen TV, all the bells and whistles) it has been relaxing and fun and I can see the benefit of some real stress-free, low-key family time. 

The pop-ups were seriously my favorite's.  Well that and the Toy Haulers:

My daughter and I had so much fun climbing in an out of almost every single RV in the place and dreaming. (I had her all to myself for the day)  However, RV designers REALLY need to hire a female eye... pronto.  There are some definite decorating holes left wide open ……. (raising my hand for the job!!!)

More my style...

Back to movie talk:
I Don’t Know How She Does It (My life, except I doubt I make the money this chick does in the movie and I no longer have to travel)
Sarah Jessica Parker, is just so darn likeable.  So even though I loved the premise of this movie and I HAD previously read the book, and it made me happy that finally a movie was about a PRETTY close to real working Mom, there are still some things I have to say as corrections (at least on my behalf)-

If my house was as cute as the one in the movie, it wouldn’t look as bad messy.  They kind of skipped over the whole having to clean the house on top of all the other stuff she juggles.
Evidently she and the hubby made a lot of money.  Not really typical for most working Mom's.

Most Mom’s do not have SJP's body, her hair, or her clothes and their attempt in making her look unkempt just made her even cuter – I WISH that was MY problem!

 I cannot believe this move was not talked about more.  I really never heard anything about it.  The acting by what I consider (and always PREFER) unknown actors was very genuine and believable.  Somewhat predictable but a really great story that even my 12 year old enjoyed. Don't let the Cage Fighting scare you away - SERIOUSLY!

Sarah’s Key 
Wow!  So sad but such an interesting story that although hard to watch at times, is a good reminder that not that long ago horrible things were done to people.  This one had a rating of PG 13 like the other two, but I’m not sure it was rated correctly.  There were some very tough issues and scenes involved and I had to ask my 12 year old to leave the room.

I wish I had watched these movies in reverse order though.  I hate ending a great weekend on a sad note, but it also reminds me how very thankful I am to not have to had endured some of our history’s hardships.

Stay Tuned - So far this week I have spent intimate hours at war with a sewing machine and the sewing machine won, been sent to the dog house over condiment packets, and saw yet Another Movie...

Monday, January 2, 2012

We had a fantastic time on NYE.  We managed to improve on our annual tradition of getting out of the country for the day and be home by night with my brother and his family. We went to the West Side Farmers Market which was extremely crowded. So much so that people were arguing for parking spaces. 
While we were there I had to laugh.  I remembered that when I was in college, there was always a certain type of guy that thought my looks were attractive. (I think it's the blue eyes/freckles/curly hair thing)  they were typically Greek/Middle Eastern decent, so as we walked around, I was pleasantly surprised to see a few heads turn my way.  (This is always a nice ego boost!)   Hey, I live in the country - we all kind of look the same here, so when we venture out to a more diverse area, it's very refreshing!

We stocked up on cannolli's, french horns, tiramasu, cream puffs, fudge, fresh raspberries, strawberries and star fruit.  For the 8-9pm munchies later.

We visited a few antique shops in the area. until the kids begged us to please stop.  They are not fans of  OLD things/people smells.

We had lunch in Little Italy at our favorite restaurant and had fun chatting up the valet attendant. (not a fancy place, just lacks in available parking spots)

We stopped for coffee, hung out at our house for one movie and desserts and then moved on to my brother's house for another movie , a hand of cards and more desserts.  We watched the ball drop and some guys break a world record jumping over water on their motorcycle and snowmobile (our guys were in charge of the remote)  and within the hour we were all in bed.

On New Years Day we discovered a few new Antique places and I found a red chair for the head of our new vintage table!

We are scrubbing it clean in the basement

We are currently under a winter weather warning - 15-20 inches of snow in the next 36 hours are on the forecast and I could not be more excited!!

Took this when I started typing
 My only plan today is to clean the house, and force myself to take down the Christmas tree (I hate removing Christmas decorations - if it were up to me I would leave them up til March)-keep in mind it doesn't stop snowing here until March.

I've decided that I WILL keep up the smaller one in the kitchen, and put all the snow related ornaments on it because it makes the long winter months more enjoyable.

If we get snowed in, I will be thrilled.  Last year they cancelled school on the first day back from break due to snow and it's looking like this year will be the same.  I'll still have to go to work but that's OK.

15-20"might be under-estimating

10 minutes later

I hope you are enjoying the first days of 2012....