Sunday, November 30, 2008

Mindless drivel

I have been a scrapping fool ever since I found that website...
I've done 5 albums (some only have 9 pages or so) and one
Christmas postcard I am having them print up and send to me.
I can't WAIT for my books to get here.
I ordered 5, of that photo shoot I did with my boys, as gifts!
I can't wait to give them!
We'll be having Christmas a week early, since we won't be home, so I get to give them earlier!
I have cooked up a brilliant prank to play on the kids again.
I get all giggly just thinking about it.
I need to get to the dollar store this week to buy up all the supplies necessary.
Ohhhh! I am so excited!!!
***
It's been a pretty good week home this week. Lots of soccer practice, for William mainly.
It was very important he made it to practices this week.
Since he was in football, and we went to playoffs, he and the other soccer hopefuls weren't able to join the tryouts until the season was over. So attending practice this week was especially
important to prove he wanted a spot on the team.
Final cuts were yesterday... he finds out tomorrow if he made the team.
Fingers crossed!
***
I need to get on the phone and let QVC know they took $470.00, not the 47.00 they were supposed to out of my account...
Lovely huh?
Must be bad karma from letting that 'friend' have it last week.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

My retort.

I was so hurt and weirded out by this
"woman" that I said kinda mean stuff.
It wasn't nice... but she asked for it.
***
I said...
"What's it to you what I do with my time? I work my butt off for my family day in and day out.
I am THE chauffeur, nurse, counselor, chef, teacher, headmaster, maid, you name it.
I see everything they do... first.
Once in a while, I do stuff just for me.
Jealous much?
I can't help it if you don't have a life where you can choose what you do...
Happy Holidays... I gotta go...
I have to go untie my kids and make them eat dog food.
***
Sounds like I needed to vent? Yeah... she caught me PMSing.
Her bad luck.
I just walked off after that and went to Bath and Body works and bought the store clean.
***
I feel badly about what I said... but she didn't have to be like that either.
I know.. I know.. two wrongs don't make a right.
Did I ever tell you about my "foot IN mouth disease"?
***
I guess we all do and say stuff like that from time to time.
My forehead must say something like
"Go ahead.. be a jerk to me while I'm in the mall"
It's always at the mall.
I hate the mall.

The nerve of some people!

I have a question for ya... and I really want answers to this...
I am at a cross roads as to what to say for the next person that belittles or makes the remark that
"They are too busy to mess with blogging or any kind of scrapping (digital or manual), and they just don't understand how someone can 'waste their time' doing things like that."
Here is my dilemma...
I went shopping. No that wasn't the problem, the problem was I saw some friends at the mall that I haven't seen in a few months, and we got to chit chatting. I asked them what was new, they told me, (same old, same old, work, home, kids, sleep) and they in turn asked me what was new.
Now... all of you know I am an Italian girl... first generation... My Mama and Papa both born and raised in Italy their entire first 20 and 26 years, so I was IMMERSED in the Italian way and the Italian Eye!
We are not a humble people. When we get asked a question about ourselves... we figure you actually want to know... everything. It is just the way it is... deal with it.
Soooo. I told them.
"Oh, let me see... I started a blog (or three), my Mama and I are started a catering company, I am making and selling scarves, William just finished football, the younger ones have soccer championships, Oh! and I just made awesome photo books for the Grandparents for Christmas, and my Pampered Chef business is strong and good.
Now people... you HAVE to know I in NO WAY meant that the way it sounded... like some giddy preteen school girl who just couldn' wait to spill her guts... it was much more subdued, and way more lackidasical.
They, in turn, were reminded their kids were playing sports too, and I ohhed and ahhed in the appropriate places and didn't say anymore about my world. I asked to see pictures of their little darlings, and they were quite cute...
No... I did not whip out my pictures.. I wasn't asked.
Then the conversation went something like this...
Her: Did you say you were flogging now?
Me: Lol..no.. I'm BLogging now. You know... and online journal of sorts? It's great fun.
You should come visit mine and see what it is.
Her: Uh..huh...I. don't. think. so. Is that one of those things where people just ramble on about their lives and put up pictures of their babies and stuff?
Me: Well... sometimes.. it can be that... Mine sure is, but I also do it because I love to write more than breathe, and it's a creative outlet for me. I have a private blog that only I read and add to, and it is like a memoir.
Her: And did you say you are making scarves?
Me: (suspicious now) Yeaaahhh. (In my head I am thinking "yeah... what of it Bee-otch)
Her: Like... scarves I can buy at the store for cheap and wear in our non existent weather?
(by this time... I am thinking... was I REALLY ever friends with this hag? Then I had to remember what my Mama taught me about people that put other people down like this...
They are waaaayyy jealous)
Me: Don't worry... I'm not going to try and sell you any. Mine are a little different, and I enjoy making them, and what I don't sell, I'll give away for Christmas.
I tried to veer her away from making more of an idiot of herself, and I asked her how he job was going, and the last time we spoke, she was up for a new position.
Her: It sucks as usual. I got the promotion, but then asked for my old job back... I didn't like it.
Me: (in my head... suurrree you did) Oh, well that's great! At least you know you were qualified and they wanted you for the job!
Her: Yeah... hey... where are the kids when you are doing all this other stuff for yourself?
{I'd had it by now... the gloves were off... I was fuming...}
Me: What do you mean what do I do with my kids... they are at school during the day, and they sleep at night... where do you think they are?
***
Okay... what else would you have said. I'll tell you what I said after you tell me your answers.
I am curious.
Have you ever experienced people who just can't wrap their heads around this
"flogging" or crafting or working from home?
Give me the comeback, if any, you would have said.
I'll post my reply in a bit.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Thanksgiving Stuff

Thanksgiving was just the 5 of us.
It was nice, and serene, (sorta) and actually delightful! We had about 6 brownouts throughout the day, we don't know why. My oven kept resetting after each one. The entire neighborhood had them, so someone must have hit a transformer or there may have been lightening. Such fun!
It was difficult trying to bake bread for all my neighbors when my oven kept turning off and on.
Our table was set by the boys, and they helped prepare all the food too!
I didn't buy a big Turkey. Instead, I purchased a great big turkey breast from Costco, and it was just enough for us.
We made stuffing galore, rice pilaf, mashed sweet and red potatoes (mixed), fresh bread, salad, homemade cranberry sauce, roasted veggies, and since I don't bake... we didn't have dessert,
Nope... I didn't even buy a dessert.
Bill fell asleep about 5 minutes after dinner and he was out for the night.
Thank God we didn't have guests.
People always feel sorry for us when we just have a Holiday to ourselves. I say... Don't! We love being with each other. All our parents are divorced, and it isn't fair that we can't spend the holidays with all of them at once, so we choose not to spend them with any of them... so no ones feelings get hurt. I know they say they don't get hurt... but they do... it all comes out when someone is mad and talks out of turn. You know how that goes. We are usually either in NYC or the beach for the holiday, but this year... there were 3 soccer practices for the boys, and we didn't want them to miss, so we canceled our camping trip to the mountains this time. I am so glad we did. I got a great photo session in, my house is clean as a whistle, and I get to spend time kickin' it with the kids.
We had a lovely holiday.
As you can see, Johnny wanted to be the decorations this year. I think he looks great... but it might get a little cold for him outside.
Hey! IT RAINED THIS WEEK!
YAHOOOOO!
Finally!
It feels a little like fall outside now!
***
I did not hit the Black Friday sales.
Did you?
I used to do it.. when the kids were babies, but now...
I had soccer to get to this morning at 7 a.m. and I slept in the car.
The things I need to get... I get with free shipping from Amazon.com and Costco.com.
I make it really easy on myself.
I tend to buy too many things for myself when I shop in stores during the holidays,
and this way... I can keep a handle on my money better.
***
I hope your Thanksgiving was wonderful and memorable!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!
Be thankful...
Be grateful...
Be loving...
Be true...

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

My new addiction!

I haven't even CHECKED MY EMAIL OR READ ONE BLOG since I read on my friend Adrian's blog about about a Digiscrap site called
Scrapblog.
OH. MY. GOSH!
I AM COMPLETELY ADDICTED!!!
COMPLETELY!
Remember all those photos I posted on my last post?
I made a FANTASTIC, RIDICULOUSLY EASY AND FUN book, that looks like
a pro did it!
The site is truly amazing.
I made computer photo books before, using my Easyshare, and ordering photo books, and they looked good.. but this one is so different!
Maybe I'm just behind the times, and many of these sites exist...
BUT ADRIAN I LOVE YOU AND HATE YOU FOR POINTING THAT SITE OUT!
Holy Cow!
I spent hours last night making the books.
You can just make them and post them online, but I chose to purchase the books so I can have them in hand.
Looking at all the books online is awe inspiring.
I chose not to share mine with the world, but Adrian, I will be sending mine to your email!
The other peoples books are very, very, very detailed, and I chose to make my own, simpler,
cleaner books, but the other ones are so fun and lovely to look at!
Just in time for my holidays.
This year, I am committed to making 90% of all gifts I will be giving. These photobooks are going to be PERFECT!!!
There are no downloads, and tons of stickers and backgrounds and they are all
free!!!!
Not the book, just the site and the use of it. It's also costs nothing to post them online.
So great!
No, I am not getting paid for this post.
I am just so giddy about this site.
One word of caution though...
SAVE AFTER EACH AND EVERY PAGE!
Ask me how I know.
Yep... I finished my book,
thought I saved it, and LOST THE ENTIRE THING!
I learned my lesson the hard way.
Save after each page...please.
Don't make the same mistake I did.
I'm off to scrap!!!

Monday, November 24, 2008

I took pictures of my men!

They actually did what I asked them to do! Look to the side.
Yes, he is staring right into your soul.
This looks like an album cover to me.
I accidentally put in the blurry one.
Hello zit! My facial retouch did NOT want to work on this one!
The future working hands of America's success stories.
Before the enhancements.
Nah... he doesn't like posing at all!
Who... me?
Just three bro's hangin out!
This girl that snags this one...
My Monkeys!
***
I am so excited!
I did a photo shoot today with my men...
We were supposed to be camping in Mountain Lakes, but since all three have soccer this week... still... we had to postpone our trip until our team obligations are fulfilled.
I took about 150 shots today... and that number is after editing.
I probably took more like 250.
I am very pleased with them.
Enjoy! I know I will!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Yes, I changed my background... again.

I guessed asked this a lot...
"Have you changed your background?"
Those of you that know me... know... yes! She changes her blog background ALL THE TIME!
I get bored easily, and like to change things up.
It is probably not doing me a good service, because there are probably some visitors that think they got the wrong blog.
I can't help it.
I'm addicted to
the
Cutest Blog on the Block... see upper left hand corner of my blog for the link.
The backgrounds are FREE!, and they have hundreds of styles... and I think I have gone through most of them.
Sooo... yes, you have come to the right blog... just a different look each time.
Thanks for asking, Mimi!
I've been meaning to explain my neurosis!

Football Friday Night!

Will was 54 when playing Varsity, and 68 when he was playing JV.
Our team...Go Eagles! I know.. the blur... it's him... I promise.
The beautiful chapel
***
Friday nights little adventure was fun!
Right after school at 3 p.m., Alex, Johnny and I drove to Encino to watch William play in the CIF playoff game. Bill worked in Chatsworth that day, so he was there hours before us.
***
Traffic was fine... we made it in 2 hours flat.
William was on the team's chartered bus, and we actually passed it on the freeway.
William and I spoke on the phone to each other on the freeway.
Such a sweet boy... ha!
***
When we arrived, we went to Johnny Rockets for dinner, then headed into the stadium.
We played Brentwood High School, a private school for uber rich kids, but we played them at Crespi Carmelite High School, another private school.
A beautiful high school.
***
I was happily surprised to see soooo many of us in stands! We filled them up! There were definitely more of us than them, and they all live around the corner!
Their side kept trying to taunt us with their cheers... and we didn't engage.
They were pretty childish.
When the game was over, and we clapped and cheered... they all kinda stood in the stands in a stupor, not understanding why we were cheering. We lost, but who cares!
We don't live or die via football. ***
One little caviat to the evening... Jack Nicholson's son, Raymond was playing... and guess who was watching from the sidelines!!! Yep... Jack himself!
Some of the ladies from our side, primped their hair, and walked the half mile to the other side to ask for a picture and autograph. He was NOT HAPPY!
They came back saying he looked annoyed.
I could have told them that.
He was there to watch his son play football.
Bill and I see movie stars all the time at the beach and at Bill' job, he does a lot of work in Hollywood, and lots of them hang out at the Huntington Pier in the summer, and ya just don't bug 'em.
Jack didn't want a scene made... and after the picture, he disappeared into his GORGEOUS Mercedes 600 until the game was over.
We had to pass by his car to get to our car... we were about 4 spaces down... and he was talking animatedly to one of his cronies through the window.
The guy wears his sunglasses at night too.
His voice was liquid.
Johnny was playing leap frog on an orange street cone, and Jack smiled at him.
Johnny was clueless.
It was so funny, at halftime, our entire team walked right by him on the field, and not one of them noticed him... the coaches did, and walked slowly and stared... but the kids? Not a clue as to who he was.
I feel old.
Really old.
***
We lost... but not without making them work for it.
It was chilly for a change, and it was so nice needing to use a blanket.
So, the rest of the evening, the other ladies kept talking about Jack. My camera didn't get good shots.
It's still the old camera.
Maybe Santa will get me all the accessories I need for my new camera.
***
Tonight, Saturday... we had a wonderful dinner party for my Papa and my Father in Law, for their birthday's.
It was nice, and I am pooped!
I'm going to bed... to bed I said!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

I got an award... people!

I got a new award!!!I got an award!!!
Did ya hear me?? I say... someone loves me!!! Me!
Who'da thunk it!
THANK YOU...THANK YOU ... THANK YOU... JEANNE @http://www.happy-jeannie.blogspot.com/
AND... it has my two favorite colors TOGETHER!!!
I AM SUCH A PURPLE GIRL!
I would like to pass this on to...
Happy Sunday!

Friday, November 21, 2008

My well dressed man!

Today...because next week is Thanksgiving... William's school is having a
"formal" chapel. One where they all MUST wear suits, ties, dresses, heels, the whole shabang.
They have chapel every Friday... and just in their school clothes.
They have guest speakers, bands, plays, all kinds of stuff during chapel. It's one of William's favorite things about his school.
***
I was so excited!
We never go anywhere we have to dress us anymore...so I was thrilled to have to shop for
dress up clothes for William again.
He outgrows them in minutes... so buying them has to be just before wearing.
Do you know how difficult it is to find size 13 dress shoes?
I just ask for the canoe dept. now.
I told William it wouldn't bother me if he wore that every. single. day!
He is one handsome fella... if I do say so myself!
He was also a good sport about my needing to take a zillion pictures of him.
***
His coaches want all the boys to wear their suits to the playoff game tonight... so they can exit the bus in style, like a professional team.
So nice!
I'm going to get there early to I can take pictures of that too!
We are driving to Encino tonight!
For those of you not in California... it's an hour and a 1/2 drive without traffic, (which never happens) and it will end up being a 3 hour drive, because there will be traffic... I will be going during rush hours... such fun...
Hubby is working in Chatsworth today... so he will be there before me.
Wish luck and safety for the team!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

My Blog Book

I wanted to show you my blog book all published and in book form!
200 pages...and it's only 6 months worth of my blog. From the day I started it Jan. 4, 2008 - June 1, 2008. If I had printed out the entire year... it would have been too long, too big, and too much work to edit. I'll be printing June - December soon.
Pictures I took were printed too! I got to choose the font, cover, which pictures, edit, add... anything I wanted! They even printed pictures on the front!!! I am getting ready for the 3 day process to get my next one all ready to publish... I am sooo excited! In case you were wondering... I made one copy only. I should have made three. I don't know what I was thinking. I went to http://www.blurb.com/ and did it all from there. Such fun! I've heard LuLu is good too, but it wouldn't download for me. Enjoy!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

I remember when...

Mamakat's Writer Workshop
***
Here are the prompts...
1.) The last time I laughed really hard...
2.) Forgive and forget...I think.
3.) I remember when...
4.) Write about something that bothered you this week.
5.) Write a poem about a favorite color.
I choose... ummmm.....#3 and maybe another one if I come up with something on the fly.
Here goes...
I remember when...
I used to dance. No, not dance just because... but really and truly dance.
Tap, Jazz, Modern. From the time I was 4 years old until I was 20, I took dance classes 4 times a week. It was like a job, only I adored it, and did it because I wanted to.. not because I had to.
***
I remember my very first dance routine was a tap number to "Singin' in the rain". I wore black tap shoes with a black bow to tie them, teeny fishnet stockings, a black leotard, and a bright red and white polka dotted "raincoat" made out of Lame'. and an umbrella to match.
My Mama put loads of makeup on me, so I didn't look like a ghost on stage when the lights hit me. I looked like a baby hooker... and I LOVED it! My Papa? He didn't like it so much, the makeup part... but he muddled through.
Because we were 4 years old, we got to go on stage in the beginning of the show because we got tired quickly, and no one wants to wake a child up to go on stage. It doesn't make for a good dancing experience, for the kid or the audience. We had to wait for 3 hours for our next curtain call for the Finale, so in the meantime, we played games, smudged our makeup and slept.
I remember being nervous just before performing, and right after I exited the stage... I told my Mama that was the MOST fun, and could I go do it again... please.. pretty please? They were clapping for me, (okay... us), and I really needed more of that for the rest of my life. I was sure of it at the tender age of 4.
***
Still tapping, I begged my mother to let me take additional classes, and she obliged. Soon I was going from once a week, to 4 times a week, taking tap on Monday's, Jazz on Tuesday's, Ballet (blegh!) on Wed. and a private class on Thurs. I realized very soon in my life, that being a soloist was the way to hog ALL the applause for oneself.
I HAD to take ballet... because it really is the basis for all things dance,
and it is the best thing for technique. I just hated every second of it... but if I had to.. I did it.
I was going to Broadway one of these days... and I had to pay my dues. Ha!
I danced through Junior High, and High School all the way to 20. One year, all my high school teachers came to see me dance. During one number, I was in a trio then, my tap shoe kicked off my foot and hit my English teacher square in the head.
I didn't flinch... she was upset I didn't stop dancing and see if she was okay, and told me so the next day... I explained to her that I had been trained to 'just keep going...no matter what. I (okay... WE) got a standing ovation that night. She used it as a teasing ploy for the rest of the year.
She is the reason I write.
Another time, my tube top lost the invisible strap on stage, and I dance topless for a few seconds. Good times.
THANK GOD my Papa wasn't there for that one!
ALL my friends were invited to our huge dance productions in Riverside.
When they would ask me why I never went to parties or hung out with them after school, I told them they would see why in January during the show. After the show... they got it.
Some of them joined up too!
I was a cheerleader too, and in the Drillteam, and having my dance background made it virtually impossible to fail the tryouts. I remember one of my tryouts... I walked in with 3 other girls to tryout... and one of the judges knew what I did, and had come to a couple of my shows, and dismissed me with a 'buy' on the team.
The other girls did NOT like it, but when I began choreographing routines in seconds flat... they shut right up.
Being that busy kept me out of tons of trouble. I never had time for trouble. I had my goals, and classes, and games, and productions to do... parties were NOT my scene.
***
When I was 15, I tried out for Star Search.
I didn't make it, but tried again, and made it.
One thing many don't know about Star Search... is that there are a lot of steps to making it on the big stage on TV. I made to juuuuust right there, when a ballet dancing dork did one brilliant set of tour jete's and beat us out.
***
I still got to meet Ed Mcmahon, but it was a bitter pill for me to swallow.(hence the dork statement... apparently I'm not 'over' it yet.)
Maybe I am just a bit competitive.. with myself... not my kids. I don't live vicariously through them. I had quite a wonderful, exciting life before them... it's their turn now.
***
The only reason I stopped dancing was because I was working full time during the day, and attending college full time every night of the week at age 20, and I just couldn't fit it in.
I did take dance for my P.E. classes in college, and they were lame, but it was a required class.. P.E., and tennis didn't do it for me.
***
In 17 years of dance I met countless celebrities, traveled all over the country, did 2 commercials,
met the MOST exemplary people ever,
felt the thrill of being on stage in front of thousands of people,
won countless talent competitions,
felt the rush of an encore,
learned how to be a team player,
learned how to stop toes from bleeding,
learned the show really must go on... no matter what, and
how much my Mama sacrificed for me just to get me to class on time before I could drive,
and how expensive it was.
Recently, she added it all up, and said she could have purchased two homes cash with the money she spent on me for costumes, shoes, sequins, pictures, dance bags, and on and on and on.
I have since stopped complaining about paying my kids private school tuition, even though I could probably buy 5 homes cash... it's all worth it to me.
Thanks so much for reading this far...
I'm going to shuffle myself off now...
Shuffle step,shuffle, ball change, ball change, ball change...
Hop shuffle step, shuffle step, ball change,
heel dig, turn, turn, turn...
annnddd.... bow.....
The end...
you can clap now.
I'm done.
Go ahead... I won't stop you...
I caaaannn''ttt hheeeaaarr yyyooouuuu!

Wordless Wed... sorta

I wasn't supposed to post my Workshop piece until tomorrow...oops...
so I took it down temporarily, and will go with a Pictorial of random pictures recently taken.
My men made Chicken stock on Sunday afternoon.
They loved the bouquet the fresh herbs lent it. I think Alex was just about to show me his belly. I don't know why... he's 12, silly, and I just don't ask questions anymore.
Everytime William brings his Football gear home for me to wash, Johnny finds it and wears it all over the house.
Look Mamala! William's head is soooo big!!!! Take my picture... please!!
5 years from now... he'll be wearing his own gear, and it will fit.
That makes me wanna cry.
But I won't... not now.
Now... he is still my little boy.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Market Night

So here are the pictures from last night...
I can't use my new fantastic camera, because we can't find all the bells and whistles to transfer the pictures to my computer... so I had to use my oldie, but goodie.
I hope they came out okay.
The trees looked really great in person. I had bling on each branch.
Not one person bought one single thing... FROM ANYONE!
Why attend a Market Night and not spend money!
I don't understand.
There also wasn't very much traffic... we had some BIG soccer games going in town... and everyone seemed to be there.
Bill tied his last game, and came in second overall. I'm kinda bummed about it.
If they had lost... we would be done with the season, and we wouldn't have to take a weekend to travel to Temecula for a tournament.
Yeah, yeah.. I know... baaaaad Mama!
See, I told you I wasn't competitive!
It's just all about me, me, me!
Sir Pukes a lot were over it by evening, and even ate Pizza after the games.
Go figure.
I had fun last night chatting with the passersby that did attend, and at the very last second...
booked a show for Dec! So all wasn't lost.
The scarves that don't sell in the next month will be used a Christmas gifts for friends and family!
The weather was absolutely gorgeous. 93 during the day, and 75-80 at night.
We have the worlds most perfect weather... I just hate that people start fires when it's like this... and we never get rain.
***
I have the house all to myself today. So nice!
Yesterday, my mojo was all messed up having someone home!
So now I have to clean up the mess I made packing for last night.
What fun I create for myself!

Monday, November 17, 2008

My baby's growing up!

Boy am I glad I am not hormonal today.
I woke up this morning to my husband and William... in the bathroom...
Bill was helping William...
SHAVE!!
SHAVE!!!... PEOPLE!
HE'S ONLY 14 1/2!
But last night at dinner, (Will sits next to me at the table) I noticed a ton of hair all over his upper lip and chin and face.
Yes... I took my finger, licked it and tried to wipe the dirt off his face... and lo and behold... it wasn't dirt at all.
It was my manchild... with facial hair. Not peach fuzz... actual manly man facial hair.
I just stared at him... he smiled... I winked at him... and he gave me a hug. He knew what I was thinking.
He asked me if I was going to cry... and surprisingly... I said no.
***
My men have a little stomach bug this morning.
They keep saying it was something they ate at the Soccer park on Saturday... but I don't know.
Now they all act like the Bubonic plague hit us.
***
We had two earthquakes this morning.
Small... but I felt 'em.
***
Tonight, I am going to attend our Monthly Market Night in town. I will be selling my scarves and Pampered Chef.
And... I joined the Chamber of Commerce in our fair city on Friday afternoon!
I'm so excited!
We are going to do a ribbon cutting... a luncheon... and I'll be featured in our little newspaper!
I joined for Pampered Chef... not the scarves.
But wait 'til you see the AWESOME tree branch scarf hangers I designed and my hubby built for me! They are so beautiful!
I'll take pictures of them all set up tonight, and post them tomorrow.
I am on dry toast and peppermint tea making duty today.
I was supposed to have lunch with a friend today... but Sir Pukes A Lot needed me, and who am I so say no to puke!
I know a good time when I see it!
***
William's Football team made it into the CIF playoffs! We have to travel to Encino for a game on Friday night. Ugh! Encino! At least its a beautiful area. At least it's not Compton.
Johnny's soccer team plays for either 2nd or 3rd place tonight, and Alex's team is already going to Commissioners Cup. I'm happy... but... I was so looking forward to a break in sports for a bit before the crazy baseball season starts.
I am not a competitive person.
If the boys win.. lose... it's all the same to me.
Bill... on the other hand... well, that's a whole other story. If the team wins, he gives them all the credit... but if the team loses, he takes all the blame. He gets so hard on himself.
I guess that's the measure of a good man.
Wish them luck!
I'm outta here!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

DVR's

Okay... so hands up...
How many people have DVR's or Tivo's at home?
Ohhh okay... I see... you, you, and you, Oh you! You too... okay good. So a lot of us.
I have a dilemma.
I wonder if you have the same dilemma.
I've had my DVR for... abbbooouuuut.... 3 years now, through my cable company.
I love it... the kids love it...
I haven't watched a commercial in 3 years. I don't know which movies are coming out, I don't what the new car names are... I don't what new shows are out.. nothing.
When I do get a chance to catch one of my shows on the boob tube, that sucker is in my hand fast forwarding through mindless drivel and sometimes even some show dialogue that I know I won't miss.
I can get an hour show watched in about 35 minutes flat.
THAT is not my dilemma.
My dilemma is...
I want a DVR for my entire life!
Do you know how many times I have mindlessly gone to my car radio and tried to 'rewind' something I heard... only to be rudely reminded that I do not have a DVR in my hand or in my car?
Or... I am at a football game... and a coach or Ref will say something, I missed it, and I try to 'rewind' in my head?
DVR's are too convenient... and it makes me want to rewind everything I didn't hear, think, see, or feel the first time around!
That's sick!
Do you know how many times I have wanted to put Will's football games 'on hold' so I can tinkle and not miss anything? Honest to God... my hand actually goes out in front of me and tries to click it on 'pause'.
Total Dork.
Any of you have this problem?
Ha! I just thought of something... I am sure you all already thought of.
I was thinking it sounds a lot like the movie "Click".
Whatev.
I could really use one of those things for life. If I could have it for just rewind... it would be great!
Oh! And mute. At night. For when Bill snores. OH! And when the kids are fighting or whining.
Oh... and when the stupid neighbors kid plays his car stereo too loudly.
Ah dreams.

Friday, November 14, 2008

My 13th Anniversary surprise!

October, 2005 was just like any other October... or so I thought.
As always for the last 13 years, it was my Wedding Anniversary month.
As always, Bill and I made reservations to stay at our Las Vegas Timeshare for a few days, just the two of us.
We went a little early in the month that year... soccer season and Bill's work conflicted with us going on our actual Anniversary. No worries. As long as we got away... by ourselves... it was fine with us.
So we went about our month, just like usual. Saturday Soccer games, school, homework, status quo... but little did we know... there was a conspiracy brewing.
Little did we know that our three sons, William, 11 at the time, Alex 9, and Johnathon 6, were cooking up a scheme with my Mama, their Nana.
William and Alex asked my Mama, about a month before our Anniversary, if she could do a few things for them, they had a plan and they needed her to help, because they weren't yet allowed to do some of the things they needed done.
They didn't give her anymore information until she agreed to be sworn to secrecy, and to agree to help... no matter what was asked of her.
She obliged...carefully.
***
Wait!!! I need to go forward to go backward... I'll tell you what they did...
then I'll give you the background.
***
Our sons informed us on Oct. 15, 2005, that we needed to go out that evening, to the movies.
They told us which time slot to choose from and gingerly handed us an envelope with a bunch of money in it, amounting to roughly $20 in all denominations and coins.
We were told we were not allowed to eat popcorn or drink soda during the movie, and we had to come straight home afterward... no shopping. (They know me so well)
They said they arranged the entire evening ahead of time, and that Nana was on her way.
We waited for my Mama to arrive, and she scooted us away.
***
We went to the movie... and went straight home as instructed.
When we were pulling up to our driveway, we saw a big white note taped to the garage door.
On it was written...
"Do not open this door... please use the front door and ring the doorbell."
So we did.
When the door opened, our 11 yr old answered, all dressed up in his best clothes, with a towel over one arm and he said...
"Welcome Mr. and Mrs. Shaver... to Three Boys Restaurant... we have a reservation for you, won't you please come in?"
I had to catch my breath. I was astounded.
What had they done? Did they do this all by themselves?
Alex, 9, took my hand and led me into our dining room. It was lit only by candlelight, and the table was set in the dishes only boys could pick out, and candles, and
Johnny, 6, was bouncing up and down, giggling the entire time. He could NOT contain himself.
My Mama was in the kitchen cooking the entire meal.
I looked at her quizzically, and she put her hands up and said....
"Don't look at me... I had nothing to do with this, I am hired as the cook and maid... that's all. This was entirely THEIR idea. They set the menu, chose the music, set the table, and told me what they were doing... I just bought the groceries and did what they told me to do. I swear on my Mother's grave."
Right then and there...I started to cry.
Johnny was sooo excited to see my tears... he said out loud...
"See I told you she would cry!!! You owe me $5 bucks!"
Then he began bouncing some more.
He was holding on to his private part... he was so excited he had to pee!
At each place setting was a menu they printed up. See above...
My 9 yr. old thought it would be funny to add in the handwritten prices, just in case we felt obliged to pay them for the meal... hee hee.
They wrote and printed it out themselves.
When we were seated... they went into our family room and stared at us eating.
They giggled incessantly, and each time I took a sip of water or wine, they quickly went to refill it. I overheard Alex tell his brothers to be quiet and just watch so it could be romantic for us.
I was dying laughing on the inside.
Then the music started. My favorite... the Three Tenors...OMG.
Imagine eating salad to "Ave Maria".
I know... it was soo freaking adorable!
They kept asking us if we were done, so they could bring out the next course, and my Mama was in the kitchen cracking up at her grandsons making such a fuss.
When dessert was finally served... the floor show began.
Alex (my mini Jim Carrey) told jokes,
William(the thinker)told us all the preparation and planning it took to pull this off,
and Johnny(OMG, I'm gonna pee my pants I'm so freaking excited) proceeded to take his clothes off and streak all over the house.
He was ridiculously giddy the entire meal.
We don't tell him any secrets... ever.
My Mama came to join us and told us everything in order as it happened, and how long they had planned it, how they wanted to pay for the movies with their own money, and
they just needed her to cook the food, because I don't like eating anyones else's food but my Mama's, and just all the care and time they invested in our Anniversary Evening.
***
I have never been so touched in all my life.
Three years later... I still bring it up to them, and let them know how special that night was to us. The women that get to marry my men are going to be very lucky women.
If they are willing to do this for their Mama... imagine what they will do for their wives!
I told them they could have bought us the most expensive gift money could buy and it wouldn't mean as much to me as what they did for us.
***
Never underestimate little boys.
They grow up to be big boys.
Their love for me is palpable. Everyone that sees them tells me so.
I am the most blessed Mama on the planet.
I am surrounded by beautiful, thoughtful, imaginative men.
Thank you my sons... it was amazing.

Amends

I started this blog in January of this year 2008.
I post every day, and I knew I wanted to make it into a bound book for my kids, so I had the first 6 months printed in June. It was great, 200 pages!
I am so glad I didn't wait to print it until now, it will would be too big.
Sooo, I am going to be having the last 6 months made into a bound book really soon.
My kids keep asking me if I have blogged about the wonderful Anniversary gift they got us for our 13th, 3 years ago... and every time... I have to say no... I kept forgetting...
until now.
I don't want to have my blog printed again without it.
Sooo... in the next post... I will write about it...
It really was that special, and it deserves it's own posting.
Soo, without further adieu...

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Another Economic Rant

Hmmmm...
I'm curious...
Have you noticed the price of gas lately?
(I feel a rant coming on)
While it is ludicrous for us to think that $2.38 is a great price for gas... compared to what it has been... it is. But... I'm curious... why the steady and sudden drop in price?
***
Last year, millions of people were ditching their SUV's for Prius's, and buying bus and train passes galore.
Gasoline was being siphoned out of huge cars to smaller cars in peoples driveways, people were flipped off for driving a 'gas guzzler', me being one of the 'flipped off' ones.
Car companies were giving away gas cards as comer's to buy their cars... everyone was talking about 'staycations' because of the prices...
and now...
Oil is $55 bucks a barrel?
All of a sudden?
REALLY?
It can happen... JUST LIKE THAT?
hmmmm....
I smell something fishy in this here United States.
It boggles my mind how our government, and all the powers that be, can manipulate our lives any way they want to, anytime they wish.
I am NOT BEING PARTISAN HERE...
I am talking about EVERYONE in Washington, our Governors, our Senators, Assemblyman,
Mayors.... ALL OF THEM!
Do we LOOK like marionettes to them?
Why, for the love of pete, didn't they lower the gas prices when we were all belly aching over it and protesting it, and sending mass emails about not getting gas on Wed's...
Why... as soon as the economy takes a supposed huge blow, does someone decide to have a heart and tell us crude is down $50 a barrel?
Don't get me wrong... I see the numbers on Wall street, just like everyone else... I see the unemployment numbers, and they are up... I shop at the stores, I feel the price crunches as food
STAPLES go into the stratosphere.
Really?
Corn, wheat, milk, eggs, fruits and veggies are the ONLY THINGS taking a hit?
Why not sugar, high fructose corn syrup, soda, chips, fried foods, etc...????
It makes me soooo mad that items that help us LIVE HEALTHY lives are the ONLY THINGS that are going up cost wise... if they can manipulate the oil prices... they should be able to manipulate the healthy food prices too! yes? No?
It pissed me off that one can buy a 2 liter bottle of soda for 69 cents, but fruit juice costs $5!
WWWHHHYYYY!
I abhor being lied too... and yes, I know... the Government is one big ambulance chaser,
but please do not insult my intelligence by saying they didn't see the
'economic crisis' coming to quite this extent!
What part of...
"you shouldn't loan money to people who can't pay it back" didn't they understand?
They are supposed to be the most educated people in our country?!?
Once again... I am talking about ALL politicians... not just a chosen few.
We are being fleeced. We have been for 60 years or so... but it is becoming an epidemic!
Even in my small town... we were supposed to have a High School built 20 years ago... and it still isn't built! They, our council, spent 25 millions bucks on soil tests and other 'necessary' tests... and still, no ground breaking.
***
Here's how I feel about the current state of our economy.
If some talking head in Washington tells the country we are in a state of panic... everyone panics, and the economy takes a dump.
If some talking head in Washington tells the country everyone is prosperous and doing well, we are strong and looking to the future... we swallow that line of bull too!
I believe they have all the cards and play them to suit them the best.
If they see too many people starving... they'll make the price of corn manageable again.
If they see a lot of people buying Smart Cars, they MIGHT think about investing more in alternative fuels. It's all a game with them! It always has been... and I for one, and done with it!
They aren't allowed in my head!
They are not allowed to determine my future.
We need to think for ourselves!
We need to not allow ourselves to be bullied by bureaucrats!
Even if the economy really is in the dumps (I personally think it is a scare tactic)...look at our own circumstances and be thankful, prayerful and try not to panic.
Panic leads to making very bad decisions. It scares me that high thinking people are actually thinking about pulling money out of their 401K's.
NOOOOOO!
Don't be hasty! Social Security may not be there for you later... that 401K is going to be your lifeline!
Start IRA's, invest in Real Estate.
One thing this scare tactic has done is help many see they were living WWAAAYYY beyond their means. I don't understand how a family can afford a 60 inch TV set, and a car stereo that can be heard for 4 blocks, but don't have electricity or food. (THOSE people live on my street)
Oh yeah... I remember now... credit cards. The BANE of our societies existence.
Ugh... I won't start credit cards again.
***
Okay...I got all that off my chest... for now... I feel a little better.
My friends... the over spending season is upon us.
Once again... I implore you...
Do NOT buy what you can't afford. If you need to put in on a credit card...
YOU DON'T NEED TO BUY IT!
Purchase wisely, and only what you have cash on hand for.
Enjoy the holidays and after the holidays too... bill free!
I love you all!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Writers Workshop

MamaKat's Writers Workshop
1.) Write a haiku about what you see out the window. 2.) Begin with "I thought I saw..." 3.) If I could live in any era of history, what would it be -- list 10 reasons why. 4.) Write a light hearted piece on how to get along with an enemy. 5.) The first time you...
My choices this week are... #3 and #5
Here goes!
***
If I could live in any era of history, it would be... The 50's.
I would be a teeny bopper in the 50's-early 60's...
Here's why...
1. I like that Rock N Roll was new and everyone was jiving here and there, but everyone seemed to be able to do waltz, samba and other cool dances. Even the men.
2. I like that there weren't any blurred lines of who was a man and who was a woman.
Men were men, and dressed accordingly, and women were women, still in control, but not letting her man think she was. Women dressed up, in gorgeous dresses to go to dinner, and the men all wore suits. It seemed romantic to me.
I know... I know... I have been watching too much "Mad Men" my favorite show ever!
3. Cars were built to last back then. No plastic, all chrome and steel. Fins were awesome, and surfing was the 'living end!'
4. More Mom's stayed home and raised their children. Daycare centers weren't available.
Families ate around the table every night.
5. Most girls seemed to wait a lot longer to jump into the sack with a boy.
Back then, it wasn't unheard of to be a virgin in high school.
Boys and girls actually dated, and the boys were taught how to treat a girl like a lady, at least in front of other people. Nowadays, girls aren't taught to value themselves, and their virginity.
There are way too many bad role models for our young girls... some of them are their mothers.
It breaks my heart and makes me stark raving mad that we have daycare centers in high schools these days. Mama's need to teach our little ladies, to be just that. Little ladies. Girls these day seem to think they have to do such adult things to 'keep a boyfriend'. Are they kidding!
We also need to be teaching our young men, to be men, and to accept the word 'no' as NO, and to keep it in their pants. They'll live without it. No one needs to be a Mama or Daddy at 16.
6. There weren't as many distractions. Teens had to be creative to stave off boredom.
No Ipods, Gameboys, Playstations. Kids biked, ran, skipped, went outside and played all day long! Childhood obesity was unheard of.
7. All the greats were still alive... Fred Astaire, Gene Kelly, George Burns, Virginia Mayo, Bing Crosby Danny Kaye, Bob Hope. No... I am not 80. I'm 40, and Sunday's were the days my Mama and I would watch old movies on TV together.
8. If I were a teen in the 50's I would not have been living in this country. I would be in Italy, where my parents were born and raised. Although I love USA, it would be cool to live abroad too. Having been to Italy twice, the last time was in 2006, my kids were sold on Italy.
It was love at first sight. They wanted to move there immediately. It is so much like our home of California!
9. People were more honest back then. They were much less litigious, and people seemed to look out for one another more. Now, it seems everyone is only for themselves.
10. When kids wanted to play a sport... they had to try out, and sometimes they wouldn't make the team. It was a good lesson to learn, and these days, there are an awful lot of kids running around thinking they are owed something just for showing up.
So there you have it. There are about 50 more reasons... but these were off the top of my head.
Now for #5...
THE FIRST TIME I...
Met Bill, I went home to inform my Mother that I had just met my husband.
The first time I...
Held my firstborn baby in my arms... the first words out of my mouth were to my mother and I said... "Oh Mama... I am sooooo sorry for everything I did to make you worry."
The First Time I...
Walked on to a stage to dance in front of thousands of people... I knew I wanted to be in front of crowds my entire life.
The First Time I...
Tried out for Star Search... I didn't make it.
The First Time I...
Traveled abroad... I did so alone... and it was thrilling!
The First Time I...
had my breath literally taken away from me... it was from something one of my babies did for the first time.
The First Time I...
Cried for no apparent reason at all for 12 hours straight, I was 17 and it was July 17, 1985.
The First Time I...
Kissed a boy.. I was 15, and he was perfect.
The First Time I...
Well, you know... did the deed.. I was way older than most girls... OKAY! Okay! I'll tell you!
I was 20.... Gosh! (Italian Mama, lots of rules, lots of terrible guilt... you get the picture).
I lost a lot of boyfriends that way... not putting out... but oh well... I have quality now.
My hubby's the BOMB in the hay! Oh my God! I can't believe I just wrote that.. and I'm not erasing it!
Okay... I'm done. I'd better stop before I tell you my blood type, and where my "happy" spot is.
Yikes!

Tuesday Stuff

If you are really on a mission to keep boredom alive... keep reading... otherwise... get out now before going further.
Don't say I didn't warn you.
***
Well, it looks like Ray's insurance paid him off, and aren't going to charge our insurance at all.
Our insurance went all bull dog on their $&*#'s and they seem to have retreated somewhat.
We'll see.
Will was NEVER at fault.
How can a pedestrian be at fault with a VAN?
But... I digress.
***
Bill was off Monday and Tuesday, and after NOT nagging him about his all day Xbox playing on Monday, I lowered the boom on him yesterday and got him to completely rearrange every single stick of furniture in my living and family rooms. So, my big, leather, butter, "L" shaped sofa is now in the front room and my chenille, cushy, sofa and loveseat are in my back room.
Oh yeah, my dining room is different now too.
Not that ANY of this matters to you at all... but this is my journal, and how I keep track of things that get done... so when I print this out in a book in December, I will have it all written down...
Geez, even I'm dozing off...
***
Okay, so here is a tidbit of useless deviance.
For those who live in California... remember the car commercial giving away
a Gas Card for a year guaranteed for $2.99 gas?
Guess it sucks to be them right now huh?
Oh come on... Give me that one!
I know it's mean... but please!
I've had a rough October.
Ugh.. okay... I'mmm ssssooorrryyyy!
***
Yesterday I colored my hair.
Yes, I know my Mother is a hairdresser... why do you think I know how to color my hair?
She is a great teacher.
Anyway... when Johnny got home from school, he was asking for Mommy wuv again, and noticed I didn't have "white lines" in my hair anymore.
He said that it looks good, and I don't look like a Nana anymore.
Nice. Real Nice.
Then he proceeded to check the back of my head, to make sure I got the ones he see's when the wind blows.
Getting old sucks big, ugly, sour EGGS!
When I turn 50, I'm going to color my hair bright shocking pink!
I'll recapture my youth somehow!
Ugh!
I'm done... I need to go get my nails and pedicure done now.
Adios!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Word verification... is it really necessary?

I gotta tell ya.
I have started participating more with this blog comment thing.
I joined SitS, and MamaKat.
I love them. I love all the comment love, and the new friends I have made...
BUT OH MY GOD!!!!
The word verification junk!
It is killing me!
Really people...
It is too much!
Sometimes it takes me 2 minutes longer to post a comment because of all the windows, words, my email address is needed, then my password, then the comment finally appears... and.. then..
I'm exhausted!
Allow me to clue you in on something Blogger just came up with.
INTEGRATED comments!
Check it out on your gadgets list!
It is so great!
I understand you feel the need for humans only to comment on your blogs... that is the only reason for the word verification thingys, I've been told. But seriously... I have not had any robots try to contact me via my blog!
If I do... I will let you know!
I would be able to visit a lot more blogs during my 30 minute allotment I give myself to do bloggy things, if we all could just make it really easy and fast to comment on each others' blogs!
Okay... rant over.
I know I'll get a huge onslaught of comments on why the need for verification is so great... but really... just change your settings.
I love ya... I really do.
I'll keep commenting... but you can't make me like it... and I have started a personal list of NON VERIFICATION blogs that I know and love.
Please don't make me post them!
***
I feel so much better now!
Enjoy your evening!

Friday, November 7, 2008

I'm evil and must be destroyed?!?

My Mama modeled for me! She wouldn't let me show her face!
I'm having a hard time writing these days.
I usually spend a few minutes each day, jotting down different things that go on, or ideas I want to talk about, or something I've learned that day.
Lately... not so much.
Except for the Writer's workshop, which I love... I don't really have a whole lot to say this week.
Maybe I had Electionitis.
Until today...
I did read in the paper today, one man reminiscing about how in the good ole days, about 20 years ago, one could go around with bumper stickers and sign in their yards touting who they are supporting without fear of retribution.
He wrote how these days, when he put a lawn sign out, or a sticker on his car, it gets vandalized or stolen off is yard by someone who doesn't share the same viewpoint.
I found this disturbing. Pathetic actually.
What have we all become? Why can't we all have different views on things and still love eachother!
This past week... I had one person personally email me and tell me she was disgusted with my post about being happy Obama won.
She told me she no longer thought of me as a decent person, and wouldn't be reading me any longer.
Well.... I can't say she'll be missed... I didn't know her all that well, but it still hurt I really feel more sorry for her though. To be that base about an election!
Pulleeeeze!
I emailed her back and told her that even though I am an evil Democrat, will surely end the world as we know it, and have absolutely no moral fiber whatsoever, I would withhold her name and her email so as not to offend or embarrass her with her kindergarten like attitude. Hey... I may a terrible, horrible, evil, Democrat, but I still have class!
I went on to inform her that I have many friends who are Reps, and though we don't see eye to eye on everything, we don't base our friendships on political party affiliation, and it is a shame she may.
I mean, I don't go around saying... Hi, I'm Saundra Democrat.. are you a Rep or a Dem, or Ind?
She was sure I was so left I could see the right.
She didn't know me at all.
Goodbye pseudo-friend... I wish I could say you will be missed... but you won't.
***
William got word, at his football game on Friday, that he'd earned the privilege of playing at the Varsity game next week! He was SO excited. He hasn't shut up about it all weekend.
I caught him trying on the varsity uniform about 5 times.
It was so sweet.
I remember getting all giddy about stuff too at that age.
Nowadays, I just get giddy if I get 6 straight hours of sleep.
I am really livin' it UP!
***
My mom and I just bid on and got an Anniversary Dinner Dance for the Sons of Italy to cater next year.!!! So exciting! We think it will be for 500 people.
We are getting our menus put together and tested right after Christmas.
Anyone who wants to volunteer to taste test our creations, give me a jingle! We will probably do 5 sample tastings before the event.
***
My scarves are selling really well.
I have oodles of orders.
The pictures don't really show them well, but you get the idea.
The skunks, (black and white curly Q on my sofa) is the hottest seller.
It also takes the longest to make.
I'll take better pictures this week.
Today was chilly, and I actually used one!
Quite toasty!
I'm off to make another skunk!