Friday, July 29, 2011

Tips on picking out your friends

Thought I’d keep with the theme of girlfriends this week!!  
I’ve made up a checklist of advice of what not to do, give or share with your girlfriends…….
1.       Don’t ever give them a key to your home for emergencies. Decorating for Easter is NOT an emergency…..nor is writing “Dust me” in the dust on your TV screen, nor putting rubber ducks floating in your toilets.

It looks like the Easter Bunny threw up in my house!!

2.       Don’t tell her to bring the camera….you don’t want evidence of….anything!

3.       Don’t share drinks…. It doesn’t work out evenly and someone will get more of that margarita.

4.       If she buys you a gag gift (oh let’s say a pair of Miley Cyrus leggings) ….don’t feel obligated to try it on.  If you should manage to squeeze into those pants (let’s say you are at someone else’s home)….and you decide that you can’t get them off and will just wear them to your  home…..then you get in your husband’s truck to drive home and discover that you may not have enough gas to get you home……your girlfriend will NOT….I repeat….will NOT offer to pump the gas for you because she is laughing too hard. Not that this has ever happened to me, of course....I'm just saying....IF it ever happens to you.

5.       Don’t go gambling with her…… especially if she is prone to winning. Some people have strange rituals (like flashing dollar bills over the screen, rabbits feet or ???) when they gamble and it can be embarrassing.
                                     Can someone explain to me what she is doing?

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Girlfriends and sisters....dangerous combo

You’ve seen the cute-sy email forwards about your girl friends being like your sisters. They say they are there for you in thick and thin, that you can count on them no matter what. I’m not so sure that’s the truth. What about the ones that play dirty tricks on you?
A few years ago, we left our daughters at home, alone, for the first time so that we could go away for the weekend.
See, don't they look like they get along perfectly?

They were old enough to be left alone, the dog was there, she was getting up in years....and her hearing may not have been as great as it once was!

 the neighbors were home, we had cell phones on and had check in times. We had taken all precautions to make sure it was enjoyable for us and safe for them. We thought we had anticipated all their needs.
These are the mistakes we made:
1.       Believing that our children would work together.
2.       Believing that our children had “sweet” friends.
3.       Golden retrievers are not good watch dogs.
4.       Watch dogs don’t “watch” when they know the suspects.
So, Jess comes home from work and all seems normal, her sister is watching TV and the dog is sleeping. Or was it normal?????
She thinks she sees something move outside through the back window. We had a pool out there (remember, the same pool that my husband almost let me drown in….see earlier post) and behind the pool was a hill with plants. She continues to look out the window and sees a movement again but the "watch" dog is sleeping on the floor . Panic is setting in……time to call mom and dad. By now, it’s about 11 or 11:30 pm. My cell phone rings…..
Jess: ”MOM….there’s something outside in the backyard.”
Me:” What is it? Are the doors locked? Where’s your sister?”
Jess: “I don’t know but it keeps moving.”

Me: “What’s your sister doing?”
Jess: “Watching TV.” (My first clue that she is not in panic mode also.)
Me: ” Hang up and call the neighbors to see if they can come take a look. Calm down. You’ll be all right”
(Ten loooooong minutes go by…..I call her again. )

Me: “Did you call the neighbors? What’s happening now?”
Jess: Loud sobs…..”I’m in the bathroom with the door locked. My friends are jerks.”
Me: Again I ask….”Where is your sister? Wait…. what are you doing in the bathroom?”
Jess: “My friends (I won’t mention their names, Brittany, Meagan, Cami ) came over when I was at work and Melissa let them in the back yard to scare me. They had on sombreros (I guess that’s scary to some people.) and scary face masks and were hiding in the plants.”
Friends to count on?????? Hmmmmm.....ask Jess.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Dog Days of Summer

I've been a bit busy lately so my "employees" asked if they could write the post for me today..... I'm a little nervous what they will goes....

It's summer and we wanted to remind people to slow down and enjoy life.
This is what we do when the boss lady is not watching.....

                               We work a little.......very little....guarding the yard.

We Relax....and take the afternoons off!

                               Watch a little TV....Animal planet is on!!!! Oh yah!!!


                                                                Remember to stay hydrated!

                                       Try not to worry about what the other guy gets.....
                                        Life isn't always fair but it evens out.

Do some swimming....try to meet some new friends.

Play ball..... and learn to take turns.

If you get into trouble for ruining the new toy.....
...hide till she's not mad anymore.

No one cares if you stay in your swimsuit all day.

Hope you are enjoying your summer!!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Will someone please explain?

Random thoughts for a Monday.
I've been in training classes all weekend and didn't get to post....sorry to you my 7 faithful followers who didn't get to read my silly nonsense.....this post should more than make up for it.
What does it mean when you drive by seven dead rabbits on your way to work the same morning? This is the way I started my day today!!!

And the same day…when you look out your front picture window….there is a rabbit sitting on the other side of the glass about 5 feet away? Is this good luck? Do people still collect rabbit feet for good luck? 

 Personally….I’ve always thought that a disturbing little habit. Actually….the whole taxidermy thing kind of gives me the chills. Now I’m not putting down people who choose to decorate that way (you know who you are and it works for the travels you’ve done or hobbies you have),   its personal taste….. just not my thing.
On a side note….my brother used to have a mounted deer head in his house and got angry at my sister-in-law one time when she was hosting a baby or bridal shower and decorated it with beads and a hat as part of her decorations.  I thought that was hysterical and very clever.

Also on an equally random thought.....
I was in the local Dollar Tree one day and an older Hispanic woman came up behind me. I was looking at greeting cards but could feel someone behind me and when I turned around to move out of her way, she smiled and said “You have an incredibly strong aura”.

Well…. What do you say to that? “Ummmm….why, thank you!”
Then she proceeds to ask if I’ve ever had anyone “read” it for me.
Can someone please explain to me what an “aura reading” is? Is this like a psychic reading?

I thought the aura was the energy field around your body? Not sure I want someone “reading my body”!!
Should I be feeling great about myself because it’s strong? Or is this a bad thing?
 So I came home and proceeded to tell my family that I was told I had a strong aura…… to which my daughter replied “Mom, you just didn’t understand her….she said you have a strong ODOR!!!”

                                         Kids have a way with putting out your aura…real fast.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Sibling Rivalry

My youngest sister just turned 40 a few weeks ago. I have to admit I took great joy in that milestone. You see, she was in denial about it. She couldn’t possibly be/ didn’t want to be that old. That’s the part that I LOVED!!! Yup….she is….getting old too!!!
I spent wasted a great part of the day texting her tips on getting old… eat more fiber, get a mammogram, watch the grocery circulars for specials on Depends, or that she could no longer call the hours of 4-6 pm “Happy Hour” that the correct term for someone her age is “Early Bird Special”. She texted back that if I was hoping to annoy her… she was actually loving the attention. In my family that kind of comment is what we refer to as a “didn’t hurt you know” comment. My youngest daughter used to say “didn’t hurt you know” whenever we would swat her behind or punish her for something.
So…. I spent some time thinking about why I took such pleasure in my baby sister’s denial. Here’s what I think it stems from……
A few years back, we went to Las Vegas together with my husband, daughters and my brother and his wife. We saw this booth where you could do some “Sumo wrestling” and she challenged me. DARN! I hate to be challenged!!! My thinking….. I’ve had two children…. I am older…. I am woman, hear me roar….I can take her out!!!
So we get all suited up….. she is in the red thong and I’m in the blue.

                                                        Doesn’t she look evil?

Just as we get started…..
she whispers in my ear…..
“Do you think they spray these helmets for head lice?”  EWWWWWWW

I lose all my super woman powers….reduced to thinking about little bugs crawling over me…..and down I go!! She squashes me like a bug….pun intended.  Can someone say….cheater????? Just like when we were kids!!!!

So….. yes….I’m happy she’s getting old too. Fair is fair!! Any suggestions for our next challenge?

Saturday, July 9, 2011

More from Alaska

Sorry it’s been a whole week since I posted last, still catching up with work after being gone. I had an absolute fantastic trip with lots of relaxation and refreshed and eager and ready to dive back into work. HAHA.....Are you kidding me? Who is ever ready to dive back into their work? Let me know cuz I want that job!!!
So let me start by telling how and why I went on this trip without husband or children. I was a travel agent way back when and got out when the girls were old enough to need me at home and the internet killed all of our airline ticket commissions. I got back into it a couple of years ago as a side job/hobby. It's getting better now that people are beginning to see that there are too many choices out there to do it on there own and they need someone to help get the best deals. (How's that for subtle business plug?) I’ve been working on my cruise accreditation certificate which says that I’m more knowledgeable than most travel agents when it comes to cruises. I’m nearly done but one of the tasks I had to complete was to go on a 3 day cruise and also a 7 day cruise. It’s a tough job but somebody has to do it, right? Well, Princess Cruise Lines offers their own cruise accreditation and when you complete it they will let you travel at a “greatly” discounted rate. So….. two weeks prior to my trip, they released space on a few of their sailings that were not full and I just “had” to take advantage. My husband couldn’t go so I took my good friend, Connie. We told everyone that it was a trip for two (nearly) empty-nester moms and we would be spending our time grieving for our children that are no longer young. Ok, so I’m not sure our husbands bought that story but it made us feel less guilty.

                   Not too shabby, eh?
We flew up to Seattle a day early but got in really late. We boarded the ship the next day. We had an incredible balcony stateroom. I said it in my last post but if you are going on a cruise to Alaska….. a balcony stateroom is a must.

Practicing my Titanic pose?

The morning we sailed to the glacier was very cold but we were able to run down to our cabin when we got too cold and sit in our stateroom and look out the sliding door and not miss a thing. Balconies are a little more expensive but soooooooo worth it on longer sailings. The whole sailing through the inside passage is beautiful with wonderful waterfalls and we got to see lots. I would sit mesmerized by the view for hours in the afternoon.

Love the clouds in this photo!!

Connie hasn’t gotten away from her family much and we promised them we’d keep her safe. So she wore this the entire time….. (just kidding….it was the lifeboat drill).

The Sapphire Princess is a beautiful ship but I was told not even the best of what Princess offers. Here’s a couple of shots of the ship. The pools (5 I think) and hot tubs (at least 4) are heated and they felt wonderful after a long day of hiking the glaciers.

Racquet ball court on top deck.

Indoor pool

Atrium of the ship where they built a champagne waterfall.

I spent nearly every morning walking the fitness track. It was a bit cold but I needed to walk off the calories so I could eat the wonderful multi-course meals. I often hear the objection from travelers  that all you do is eat while on a cruise and yes, you can gain weight but I ate (a lot) and with all the walking I did….I did not gain a pound (didn't lose either). Connie found out the hard way that if she did not eat all her meal, our waiter, Mario, would give her no dessert. He told her that his momma said if you don't eat it all, you get nothing for dessert. So he opened the lid on her dessert plate to show an empty plate with the word "Nothing" drizzled in chocolate sauce. There are tricks to keeping the weight off while sailing. This is not one of those tricks but I had to take a pic of them…..too cute.

We walked the Mendenhall Glacier which is about the only glacier that you can walk up to. It was beautiful.

I did a little fishing with my friend, Sarah. She even showed me where you could see Russia. LOL

We shopped and learned a bit of the Tlingit Indian culture of the area. I loved the quaint little towns…. Reminded me of the places we would vacation in New Hampshire, Maine and Vermont when I was a child. I enjoyed the flowers blooming everywhere.

Victoria BC has over 800 hanging baskets in their city that someone has to go around watering every night. Connie treated us to a pedi-cab tour of Victoria which was wonderful. We had this Australian tour guide pedal us around the city for 2 ½ hrs and he really knew his stuff and told us lots of little tidbits of facts. It was wonderful.
                                           Connie and Tim our pedi-cab tour guide.
So.... I'm no Rick Steves when it comes to travel blogs but I hope you got an idea of the tough job that I have. If you've never been to Alaska, think about going. It was beautiful. I'm also getting some group rates together for a trip next summer....send me a note if you are interested. 

Friday, July 1, 2011

Hello from Alaska

I’ve had the opportunity to travel some in my life (not as much as I plan to) and I’ve seen some beautiful sites. This week I’m privileged to have had the chance to cruise to Alaska and see my first glacier. I’m speechless. Truly an amazing sight!!
We arrived at the entrance to Tracy Arm Fjord at 6am. Waking up, I pulled the curtain back of my cabin to see chunks of the most beautiful blue green ice floating by.  The closer we traveled into the glacier, the more chunks of ice we saw. I put on my jogging clothes and went up to the top deck to of course, multi-task…. Jog and take in the sights. I quickly found myself so distracted by the beauty that I was stopping more to take the pictures than actually exercising. I went down to change into more layers of clothes and to get my friend and traveling partner Connie to come up on deck with me. We joined the others gathered at the bow of the ship and took in the most breathtaking sights. We stood mesmerized for over 2 hours. I loved hearing the chatter of so many different languages as we all experienced this together. No one pushed or shoved but took our time enjoying the 360 degree views. There was enough for all to see. Sea lions were plentiful laying on the chunks of ice while we held our breath that they’d get out of the way of the ship in time. I have to say, I did have a few brief thoughts of Celine Dion singing as we drove through those chunks of ice…but our hearts boat went on. Connie and a few others spotted a bear through the trees.

As I sit here writing, we are traveling en-route to Juneau. I’ve been sitting in front of the sliding door of my cabin (travel tip---a balcony cabin is an absolute must on this trip) writing a sentence and then pausing to stare at the mountains and shorelines that is my view. Wish you were here enjoying this with me.

Check back next week when I organize my thoughts and my pictures to tell you about the rest of my trip.