Monday, August 3, 2009

Movin' on Up!

BIG changes - relocation, new style, etc.

My friend Becca and I are teaming up to make this blog bigger and better - and hopefully more entertaining! To do so, we've also gotten our own domain. YAY!

So here it is - our new location!

Join us over there - I promise it will be a daily post kind of place. :)

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Pound For Pound Challenge Widget

Friday, April 3, 2009


My lovely friend over at Suburban Scrawl is hosting a contest for New York City themed prizes!!! Check her out here:


Wednesday, February 11, 2009

The Volunteer-Yourself-Meme....

So I volunteered for this sorta-meme. No tagging people - just volunteering. So if you want to do it, let me know! :D

Basically, you're randomly assigned a letter, and you come up with 10 things you adore that start with that letter.

I got the letter C. Uh....ok, we'll see where we wind up with that letter!

1. Children - or at least, mine. They're hilarious. They already know how to use sarcasm. They love to tell jokes and laugh and be goofy. They appreciate a good episode of Psych, and will even watch House with us at times. My younger son's favorite song is So What by Pink right now, and my older son's favorite song is Paint it Black by the Rolling Stones. How much cooler could 2 kids ever be??

2. Chocolate - any true piece of chocolate. Strangely enough, I do NOT like chocolate cake, frosting, icing, or fudge. It's just off somehow. But give me a piece of Godiva, or a Hershey's Kiss, and it's BLISS! I can be having a truly horrific day and a nice dark chocolate bar will soothe my savage soul.

3. Crocs - YES, they are hideously ugly. But they're divinely comfortable. And they're cheap, considering they last for well over 2 years. And they never, EVER smell bad. Seriously - I have foot issues. If I wear shoes without socks, it's the death knell for those shoes. But I can wear Crocs without socks on a blisteringly hot day in 90% humidity - and they will not smell. Fabulous. And not only that, but they make my knees happy. Bonus!

4. Computers - Call me a nerd, but my laptop is my lifeline. I make money there, and I ease my insanity there. I can play games, chat with friends, and I can write. Ahh, perfection.

5. Coffee - My day is off if I don't have at least one cup. Two spoons of sugar, and enough half and half to make it that beautiful cafe au lait color. I like trying different types, roasts, and flavors, but I prefer buying whole bean and grinding myself. There's a coffee maker I'm planning on buying my husband for Father's Day that grinds it fresh every time, and with a burr grinder. I can't wait. That, and a subscription to Storyville Coffee would be heavenly.

6. Cardio - I love working out if it's moving fast, with great music. I hate lifting weights. I know I should do it. But I prefer getting my heartrate moving and enjoying the music and the challenge of pushing myself to go faster, better, longer. Weights, not so much.

7. Candles - I love the way they smell, the glow, all of it. I've gotten out of practice of burning them because with kids, it's just been too dangerous. As they get older, I've been able to burn them more. I love the warm feeling I get when I light one after cleaning a room.

8. Cats - there's something about their fuzzy warmth that makes me happy. Our current kitten is a nut. He's too funny. He'll run around chasing his own tail, catch it, freak out, then run away from said tail, not realizing the thing is attached. He'll stop, thinking he's safe, only to relax a touch - and see his tail out of the corner of his eye, and jump in fear. It's so worth the cleaning of the litter box.

9. Chilly weather - not COLD, chilly. Like, in Fall. I love the crisp, 50-56 degrees range. You can walk around with a light jacket or sweater, and enjoy a toasty fire in the house or bonfire outside. It's nice to do yardwork without sweating profusely. It's nice to get chilled and come inside for a cup of tea. And I love cuddling up under a fleecey blanket, or sleeping when it's colder (but not frigid, mind you!).

10. Cheetos - well, hell - look at the title of the blog! Really, this last one could include all bright-orange-cheese-flavored snacks. I love crunchy cheesey snacks. Yummm. Cheetos are fantastic. They go with anything. Delicious. Still wish they were nutritionally equivalent to carrots.....

Friday, January 9, 2009

New Year.....

Happy New Year to the blog-o-sphere. Been quite a year so far. I've set some goals for myself, and haven't been able to start on them. I'm stuck in the house with vertigo, but thankfully, after 12 days, it is finally starting to get better. Hopefully, I can start driving again soon.

Setting goals is a time honored tradition in January. And yet, so many people don't follow through with even half of their goals. I am proud to say that of the 3 goals I set for myself last year, I followed through on 2 of them. That's saying a lot, since I'm normally one of those people who by Valentine's Day is blissfully unaware there even were goals set.

I like cycles. I like the idea of starting fresh, trying something new for no other reason than the date changed. It makes it feel more momentous. This year, I have a few projects that I want to complete around the house in order to help with my main goal of "Healthier Life." The projects include organizational and redecorating tasks that will help me to feel more settled and calm in my house, which is also my office.

I also have a few things I'm going to do that I've always wanted to do. One is learn to play the guitar. My husband actually bought me an acoustic guitar for Christmas 2 years ago for this purpose, but I was unable to find doable lessons (time or money) since. And I tried self-teaching, but yeah - failed miserably. So for Christmas this year, my parents bought me a gift card of lessons at a place nearby that has really good hours for lessons! They're even open during the day, which is easier with the kids in school and all. So now I have no more excuses. I'm pretty excited. I am musically talented, I played the organ (no naughty thoughts - the keyboard instrument that you typically hear at hockey games, people!) and competed in state music competitions, and did pretty well if I do say so myself. So I hope that the guitar will be something I can enjoy, and then be able to play for others and then they in turn can enjoy as well. I love camp fires, and I just have always wanted to know how to play a guitar to be able to make music while outside under the stars in front of a beautiful fire. You can't exactly drag a Wulritzer out back, you know?

Another thing I want to try this year is going back to school. I swore up and down for the last 14+ years that I would never, ever, EVER go back to school. I hated college, it was so boring/a waste/pointless/insert other whining here. I, unfortunately, got a stupid degree - in Finance. You can see how very marketable this is in the current US economy, no? One of the careers I had wanted to do, but came upon too late to change and still graduate on time, was becoming a nurse. So this summer (since the class I was going to take this quarter filled in about 10 min during registration) I'm going to take 2 classes to see if I might be inclined to become a nurse. We shall see. If that doesn't pan out, I figure I can always take some writing courses and pursue that other dream of mine. And possibly unearth the old novels....hmm...

My usual goal of getting to a healthier place physically is always in place, but a new year always renews my energy on that front. Unfortunately, the aforementioned couch rest hasn't helped me out there. I suppose by the time I can drive and work out again, I'll be stir crazy enough to work out a couple times a week? One can only hope....

Oh, and as an added bonus - we finally recovered our photos (see previous post) and without spending a third of an average person's salary to do it. I think maybe I should start a business doing THAT for people from home - and charging significantly less than the schmucks who gave us that insane estimate.

Monday, December 22, 2008

ALWAYS Back Up Your Pictures - PLEASE!

Ok, Public Service Reminder - BACK UP YOUR DIGITAL PICTURES! And videos, if you have them.

Sure, music and movies and games suck to lose. But let me tell you - this hurts so very very bad.

We just lost nearly 5 years of photos. My second son's first smile. His first tooth. My first son's first day of school. First Christmases, new home, Easters, graduations from karate, Kindergarten, you name it - gone in an instant. It's as if we've had a fire, and all of our photos are gone. This is just so horrifically painful. And there's a few people we can blame.

First and foremost, I blame myself. I am always admonishing people to back up files. And I normally do burn pictures to CDs. Except that for the past 2 years, we've backed up photos onto 2 other computers, instead of CDs. Well, we thought we had. But, oops, no - the files we thought were there - AREN'T! And the CDs I had to meticulously burned prior to that, labeled and filed - missing. Can't find a singled one. We don't know if they got thrown out, or they're just lost. I had them last year, I used them, in fact. But they're not there now. Not when I need them to ease some of the pain.

I also blame my husband. He is a computer whiz. He builds them, fixes them, heals them. He's even found lost, thought long gone, files for OTHER families! Other moms who thought those precious firsts were never to be found again - crying - have thanked him profusely. But he can't do that for me, somehow. And he built the new server for us, a supposedly fail-safe place to store all our files. It was supposed to back itself up. It was supposed to never, ever fail. But it did. Brand new, supposedly fully functional, and suddenly, the new drives are no longer working. We finally got them to talk to the motherboard again, and yet, they won't allow the files to be retrieved. It's heartbreaking, knowing the files are there, and yet, beyond reach.

And finally, I blame Seagate. They made these drives. They made this supposed fail-safe system. This self-back-up system. They claimed to have a warranty. And then they have the complete audacity to want to charge $10,000 to get these files off these drives. That is the price of a CAR. They're insane. It is THEIR fault. We followed their instructions, their rules of installation and operation, and THEIR drives were faulty. And their backup system FAILED. This was 100% the fault of their drives. And yet, we're to pay this insane amount to get all these precious memories back? Insanity.

We're hoping to run photo recovery programs and system scans to recover files off my laptop, as well as the hard drives on which we used to have the photos stored. I'm sure we won't find everything. There is no way to even know, as I'm sure my memory of every picture we've taken since buying our first digital camera in March of 2004 is faulty. I'll be thankful for every single one we find, that's for sure. And I'm thankful for the family web site I have, where I haven't deleted any of the uploaded photos. I'll also be tearing apart the house to find those lost CDs, to at least have the pictures up to 2006.

I will also be investing in an external drive for backing up pictures in the future, because I am not trusting any company's claims ever again. There is no such thing as fail safe. So I'll say to everyone - back up your pictures NOW, because losing everything is horrible. You can replace the movies, you can replace the music. But the pictures - they can never be replaced. Sure, I can get pictures of my kids at every age, even every holiday, from my mother. But they won't be the same as those precious favorites I've taken. They won't be the silly family shots we all have of the sweet time we all spend alone. It will not be the same. And for that, I am so very, very angry and hurt. Please don't let it happen to you!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Wish I Didn't Know Tasted Like Heaven....

Yup, I have another food item to add to the list of "Things I Wish I'd Never Tasted." We all have that list. The one where people tell you, Oh, you MUST try such-and-such. And you just know it would be dangerous to try it, because if it's as good as they say, you know you're going to want one every week. Or day. Or hour. Or, heck, you're going to find yourself face down in a pile of said food, stuffed to the gills, thoroughly embarrassed but still in hog heaven.

I have quite of few items on my list. Chocolate covered potato chips. Rolo pretzel goodies another (a treat I only make at Christmas). I added yet another one this week. Starbucks' Salted Caramel Signature Hot Chocolate. Oh. My. GAWD. Yeah, it's that good. The guy who told my husband about it said in the email subject line, simply, "Oh mama!" Yeah, he's right.

Seriously, I'm not a huge Starbucks coffee fan, but I like their specialty drinks. Blend it, put whipped cream on it, sure, I'll drink it. But nothing, and I mean nothing touches THIS drink.

When I first heard of it, I though, eh, salted? I mean, really? Aren't we taking the sweet-and-salty thing a tad too far? NO, sweet holy chocolate gods, we are NOT. Imagine creamy chocolate and silky caramel on the bestest whipped cream ever. And then top it with salty peanuts. Yeah - there. YUMMY. It was like drinking an ice cream sundae. Or drinking a really, really good Turtle candy.

So yeah - I suggest that if you're trying to lose weight, you steer clear. But if you're working on adding a few pounds, hey - have at it. Or if you like to live on the dangerous side. But whatever you do, do NOT, I repeat - DO NOT, look up the caloric content. You might faint.

I might try to duplicate this one at home....mmmm.....drooooool.....

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