Friday, February 29, 2008

Leap Year Day

Leftover lasagna and a fresh cuppa coffee for breakfast. Ah, a vacation day spent at home. I had to "use it or lose it" for my last vacation day so here I sit at home, too snowy outside to plan an outing of any great distance. The hope is that I'll get some things accomplished that I'd like to, I'll have to report back on the progress of that later. I'm working on self-restraint from online shopping. I have a few giftcards still in need of use, but there's very little that I actually need at the moment and I'm reminding myself that I'm cruising in a month and a half so might as well save up for that little slice of fun.

Work is going through it's fiscal-year-end round of layoffs. I'm not too concerned for myself since I'm in a department that is just getting established, so I have the false sense of security that they wouldn't disassemble something that they've just put together again. Who knows, the only thing I do know is that I can't sit around fretting about it. I'd look at it as an opportunity to try something new - maybe even make a big move out of state. I have to be employable somewhere. Is that also a false sense of security thinking? Maybe :) I heard from the ever winding grapevine that part of the girl group, Fran, was eliminated. That's too bad, but at least she's not dependant on the income for survival. Those are the people that I feel for - the Sally's of the world. When her position was eliminated, she's her only source of income, it's a huge impact on her life. But she turned out even better, a reminder that life plods along, and often changes that are unwelcome and unsettling turn out with an even better path to follow. Easy for me to say as I sit and continue to collect a paycheck. But I do think I know a little something about unexpected changes - and I've withstood the storms and come out still standing, and having even more fun and following my own interests. You just make a different path. So I'll move to Vegas and become a Showgirl, that's my solid backup plan. I'm quite skilled ya know. I've been practicing my Anyone Can Dance DVD, after all.

Today is our "extra" bonus day of the year. Doesn't feel any different than any other day. I think it should. I think a day that rolls around every four years should have some measurable difference to it. We should get free biscuits at McDonald's or something. Yeah, nothing says "special day" like a free biscuit! I'm going to rally for change!

Speaking of rallying for change, I've been in strong contact with Ms. Barbara Anne Ferris, who's running to oust Dennis Kuchinich from his congressional post of District 10. She's an heir to the famous Ferris Steakhouse. Kenny's been working with her to record some free commercials for the radio station and she's been quite appreciative and friendly. I do like her platform, I think she really wants to see some business come back to the area, particularly since she knows first-hand about having a business in a dwindling economy. She's also very well-travelled, and she's offered to come and speak for my Toastmaster's Annual Party thing, of which I am on the planning committee. So here's my due diligence - if you're voting, Vote Barbara Anne Ferris! Cimperman sucks, he doesn't even live in the 10th District, so if it's not suitable to call home, you have no business governing for us. And Kuchinich - well, he hasn't done a thing for us, he's too busy with his younger hot wife and making his unrealistic bid for the Presidency. So there, my political soapbox has been stood upon.

It's snowin' and blowin' out there. I think March plans on coming in like a lion once again. I saw Street Widda running down the street yesterday, another reminder that cats should be beloved indoor housepets. My spoiled pampered pets don't know how good they've got it. Although they did surround me last night in bed, making it possible to pet some kinda fur at every turn.

I'm going to spend a little bit of time trying to locate a bowling alley for the Rob & Tracye Activity Club activity that's scheduled to take place at the end of March. I only heard from 1 couple that was on my invite list, which is why people don't schedule activities - no one really wants to get together. We all talk about it, about how much fun it would be and how nice it would be to see each other more often, but when it comes down to the nut cutting (yes, that's the official term), no one really makes the time for it. That's fine, I'm a party in my own pants most of the time, so I'll have fun no matter who shows up ~ ha ha ~ .

Oh, by the way, I'm listening to my MP3 player while I blog. I've got 'er up & running. I'm kickin' technology's ass. My Palm still sits in it's little cardboard box. Another challenge for another day.
Peace, I'll update later on the progress of the day. I know, you're waiting with baited breath to see if I manage to clean off the coffee table or not. Hold on to your hats, it may be a wild ride! See for yourself the challenge I face:

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Post-Coital Cuddling

"If you were a hairdresser, I'd open a hat shop next door and retire a millionaire," Mr. Anderson sarcastically stated.

I was trying to help him fix his hair, it got quite disshelved after his shower today, it was sticking up in all directions and I was trying to blow dry and shape it into some semblance of order. It was all over the place after I had my way with it. I think he got a bit concerned when I said, "Now don't freak out," and then he looked in the mirror. I was doubled-over in the hallway laughing, tears streaming down my face. I don't know how I could fuck up short guy-hair that badly, but there it was. I'm still laughing out loud just thinking about it and his hat shop comment. I haven't laughed that loud in a very long time.

Kenny was quite the cut-up today. I was telling him about an article I'd read in Oprah Sunday morning about the powers of meditation, and I told him he should give it a try since he's getting a bit surly with age. He replied, "Just take a nap, it's the same thing." He figures he "meditates" a good nine hours a day.

It was a busy week. I had to prepare for two presentations on Friday, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. It was stressful getting prepared, but I kept reminding myself that somehow it all always gets done, and guess what? It did! They went okay, the afternoon a bit smoother than the morning, although I did have one of the directors taking a nap right in the front row. I give myself props for not getting totally distracted by that. A little lost train of thought, but not as bad as it could have been. It's a cryin' shame I don't get Toastmaster's credit for those - I should!

Saturday night we went to our friend's house for a birthday party celebration. The birthday boy turned 51 or so, and is recovering from neck surgery. He's in a halo. I told him nothing feels quite as old-man-ish as turning another year older in a neck brace. Old Age is a tough old bird. Anyway, Pete's recovering well and was able to play some Texas Hold 'Em. We played three games, I didn't win, but I held my own for the first two, then got knocked out quickly in the third when I went "all-in" on a full house and got my ass beat by The Mailman. I guess if I have to get an ass spankin', at least it was by that sexy Mailman :) I wasn't very faithful to him, however; there was a 25 year old little piece of eye candy there we nicknamed "The Kid" and I made my very dirty intentions for him known. Kenny was a good sport and let me have my fun, but The Mailman was surprised he could be so easily forsaken. He called me fickle :)
Anyway, by the end of three games of sexually harassing The Kid, he dry-humped me in the kitchen on his way out the door. I guess I might have taken the overt flirting just a bit too far. Although it was fun, and he was tall and quite a hard body! I'm not going to lie and say I completely objected to it. If Kenny gets the chance to be dry-humped by a 25 year old hot chick, I wouldn't cockblock him either. Kenny said the people at the party probably think we're swingers. Lest you get the wrong impression, it was a crowded kitchen, and only lasted a moment, it wasn't quite as scandalous as it may sound. Is there such a thing as an innocent dry-humping?? Ah, good times.

Our vacation plans for 2008 have just taken on a life of their own. We now have back-to-back 7-day cruises booked for October, Kenny was offered a free cruise on Royal Caribbean (balcony room!) for April, and the Vegas in June birthday trip is a sure thing. We might end up broke heading into '09, but it will have been quite a fun ride getting there. But I hope that doesn't happen - that would just suck.
The phrase "Implied Post Coital Cuddling" was used all in a day's work, at a meeting to discuss and code some humorous cards. I am in the perfect job, where that type of discussion is acceptable and warrented.

That's it for this Sunday night, I have a speech to write for Toastmasters and it's now or never. I wasn't even going to allow myself blogging time today, but here it is anyway. Oh, a quick "Goals" update: February "Early Riser Girl" idea is as dumb as the daily sex idea. I've tried, I really have. I did good for a while. But then, well, it was back to 8:30 arrivals. It's hard to go in early when I've worked late the night before. Well, maybe I'll be back at it tomorrow morning. The dawn of a new day lends the promise of new hope to accomplish the things we desire.

Peace, and enjoy the week.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Baskets of Sunshine

Alright already, enough with the flowers. Sheesh. It's one little bouquet, it doesn't need two blogs worth of mention. But here they are anyway, because they're just so pretty. These are the lilies (and a couple of roses) I brought home and vased up for the bathroom. They are truly spectacular, my favorite flowers. The hanging picture is something I actually painted during Innovation Day at work one year. It's a sad little pot of geraniums, but anything looks kinda nice matted and framed. So I guess I can add "exhibited artist" to my resume now! Exhibited in a bathroom, but it is officially on display. Such talent I have.

New passport photos have finally been purchased. I still didn't want to go yesterday, I look old and double-chinned, but I figured I wasn't going to look any younger (or probably skinnier) in the next few months so it was as good a time as any to go get 'em. Kenny said he looks like a 40-year-old man. Welcome to my world - the Sucktacular World of 40. I now have to pay another $100 for my passport because I want to officially get my name changed on it as it was issued in my long stupid married name and that is not a name I want to be associated with on anything anymore. So it's worth the $100 for the change-a-roo. Course, it would have been free had I submitted it within a year of the name change, but I kept waiting for a good hair day, and well, here it is two years later...Ah, vanity is a shameful, expensive thing.

Sunshine + a basket of clean laundry = one irresistible cat napping opportunity. Widda found it first, and Stanley decided to join her. It's interesting that normally Widda runs for her life from Stan, but the allure of the basket brought them together for an entire Saturday afternoon. They were both hot to the touch from the sun beating in through the window. Neither would allow anything to persuade them to relinquish their spot - not even kisses and photos. Kenny and I both stood there looking at them cooing and awwing like a couple of idiots. They were just so simply content.

Sunday night while Ken was at the Veterans Radio Show Sunday night, I happened upon the movie Notes on a Scandal that just happened to be starting so I settled down to watch. It was really rather interesting and I enjoyed the hour and a half. My Oscar picks so far are Daniel Day Lewis for There Will Be Blood Best Actor, and No Country for Old Men for Best Movie. And Amy Whatsername for the Enchanted movie - whatever she's up for, I think she'll win. In case you were gonna ask me....

Spent the better part of Sunday afternoon with Sophie, she's doing fine and looking good. We had a nice visit, I enjoyed some homemade nutroll. She actually grinds the nuts and everything, it's quite a process. Makes the $5 the bakery charges seem like even more of a bargain, but it's hard to beat homemade goodness. She'll be turning 91 in a couple of months, the past year has just flown by - again.

Oh, our big news, in the event you missed the little blurb in the prior blog, we booked our tropical cruise vacation! We opted for going both weeks, like there was really any doubt. I love that vacation, why wouldn't I want to go for 14 days? It's interesting to me, though, that a number of guys have mentioned the concern of the weight gain with being in a cruise ship that long, and that's something that I would never even consider as a "con". I just wouldn't let 10 lbs. govern my vacation - or my life. Maybe I should a little more often - maybe then I wouldn't have the ol' double-chin in the passport photo! Maybe I'll LOSE weight on the cruise, I'll be there long enough to do all the sunrise yoga classes, sunset walks, and use the gym. Ha, that even made me laugh just typing it! I will be sad without the cats for that many days, but I'll give them extra kisses before and after. They'll be happy to be free of me for fourteen days.

That's it from me. I have many more words, but I don't want to lose my audience of one so I'll wrap it up. Oh, by the way, get ready to say, President Barrack Obama, Sir. Who ever thought that name would be President??

Peace, and show the one you love, love. It's storming out there once again, putting on a big display with high winds, lightening and thunder.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Woo's Me

Happy Valentine's Day to me!
For the first time in all my years at American Greetings, I received flowers on Valentine's Day - and they were the biggest, most beautiful arrangement I saw anywhere. Yes, I scoped 'em all out and compared and mine were the best - I win! Seriously, they were beautiful, filled with my favorites - Stargazer Lilies and white Roses, not a baby's breath to be seen. I'm not a fan of that as filler material.

I picked the lilies and roses out of the arrangement and brought them home, they are sitting in a little vase on a shelf in the bathroom, behind closed doors. Stanley wants to eat them so badly, he is about to lose his cat mind. He's the reason I didn't bring the entire bouquet home, he sees flowers and thinks, "Kill! Kill! Eat! Destroy!!" immediately. His nose started twitching like Bre'r Rabbit and he was on the hunt looking for the source of the smell - we watched him check out the top of the fridge, the countertops, finally leading him to the closed bathroom door.
I expect at some point today we'll forget to shut the bathroom door and the flowers will be history. That's what happened when I had a little vase of lilacs in there a few Springs ago. Last night I heard a loud crash around midnight and sprang out of bed, wondering just how in the hell he had managed to open the bathroom door sans thumbs, but he hadn't - instead, someone (not pointing fingers, Caesar!) had knocked over the trashcan on a quest to lick the empty canned catfood cans. My cats never ate flowers or knocked over the trash. And to think Kenny blames all their misbehaving on my influence. Hrumpf.

We had a really nice Valentine's week, I guess all my complaining about Kenny's lack of wooing finally sunk in a little bit and he really stepped up. Flowers, chocolates, dinner, movies and of course, porn sex. Maybe that's why I got all the wooing! That's a new "Which Came First" question for the ages.

Anyway, we saw There Will Be Blood Friday night before we headed to dinner at Dante. I saw the "girls club" there at the concession counter, which figures that not only did my fucking ex-husband move into my zipcode, but now Jill is going to infiltrate my movie theater. That's the beauty of a free country, however. Go where ya want. I do find it rather weird, however, that my ex - who could choose to live anywhere in the great big city - would move as close into my suburb as he could get. Fucking idiot. If that sounds harsh, it's not really meant to be - it's just still fun to call him names. And that's another one of the beauties of living in a free country - I can write whatever I want!

Got a big day lined up, including visiting of grandparents, straightening up the house a wee bit, and Kenny has to go to his office and record some radio commercials. We're off to take care of all that, and get new passport photos taken. We just booked our 14 day cruise vacation for October - what a fun fucking time that will be!! Kenny got a free cruise week in casino credits, so it made the 2-week vacation deal $1000 more affordable. It is going to be a fabulous 2 weeks of tropical breezes, swimming with dolphins, pina coladas and sand in toes. I feel incredibly lucky with my life.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Lightening the Load

Nothing feels quite as light as a fresh start! It's a new blog link, but the same old blogs just chock full o' the nothingness that makes up my week. Well, perhaps nothingness is a harsh word - they're full of something. Hopefully, they'll be a little less full of drama going forward, now that I've truly severed ties with the dead weight and negativity that was swirling around me. I feel more relaxed and less annoyed than I have in quite some time. That is, after the initial annoyance of high-school drama that I experienced on Friday. I'll sum it up briefly by saying that when I severed my friendship with Jill back in July of '07, I should have kept it that way. She is a desperate individual with a lot of problems of her own making, and it is not something I want to be anywhere near. She's desperate to be liked, to be right, to be praised, to be thin, to be in control of everyone and everything - sadly desperate.

Unfortunately, that effects her immediate circle of people who we both know, and were both once friends with - but sometimes there's just collateral fallout. After my divorce, I'm experienced with dealing with it, and I understand that's just the way it is - people have a hard time remaining neutral, I think due to a weak character. They don't have the strength it takes to nurture separate friendships. That's okay, I'm strong enough to deal with it and just chalk it up to another interesting facet of life and relationships. It'll all be good book material sometime down the road, anyway!

How can I have spent Saturday washing and detailing my car, and now Sunday its 7 degrees outside?? I gave Lexi a very good detailing (good for a February in Cleveland standard), and Kenny took her to the car wash and hosed off the winter mats and washed the exterior. She was very shiny, and now today, frozen. Not frozen like Kenny's car, however. We got up and were heading out for a leisurely Sunday morning breakfast today, and then his car door got frozen open. It took some WD-40 and a screwdriver to coax the mechanism back into action so the door would shut. We took my car and left his to pout in the driveway. It is as Sophie would say, "bitterly cold" out there. I hope she has her heat turned up to more than 58 today.

Saturday night Kenny, myself, Timmy and Tina saw a Journey tribute band at the House of Blues. Kenny wrangled up four free tickets for us with his connection down there, so I at least didn't feel too badly when we left at intermission. I am 41 and do not like to stand for concerts. Period. I was doing really well, however, and not even complaining about it, but rather rockin' to the music.

The most annoying part of seeing shows at House of Blues is the people trying to jockey you out of position every chance they get. I assumed a wide-legged stance with hands on my hips to keep those shovers from trying to get all up in my bidniz, but they still tried. We had nice spots close to the stage because we arrived early and assumed our position. Well, some little upstarts tried to just come in and get in front of me! I said, "Where do you think you're going?" when they tried to push me out of the way. They said, "It’s general admission" to which I replied, "yep, and I'm standing RIGHT HERE, so get your asses behind me." They did. Lucky for them, or they would have gotten a little lightening (right hook) and then a little thunder (left uppercut). Timmy taught me that :)
But Jeezus, what's up with our society that it's okay to arrive late and then just push your way to the front?? I guess it's that younger generation, who also thinks it's okay to talk on your cell phone and poop at the same time, too. Where's Miss Manners??? I think we need to bring her back!! Oh, yeah, as an aside, the singers in the tribute band were OLD - if they weren't bald, they were totally white-haired. Man alive, the music I made out to during high school is being paid tribute to by a group of old fuckers.

Kenny and I had a lengthy discussion about tribute bands. I said I think they're a little bit sad - spending their lives thinking they're "cool" but really they're not cool enough to be original, they're just copying someone else's talent. I told him I'd be a little bit embarrassed if I was dating someone who thought he was "all that" and really he was just a copy-catter. Kenny still said he'd be in a tribute band if someone wanted him to - and I said that would be okay, but I'd still make fun of him. He likened it to my liking a fake Prada purse, to which I don't really see the correlation, but I do enjoy a Fake Prada so I guess he can enjoy Fake Journey if he wants to. He said he'd be Fake Phil Collins or Fake Neil Diamond if he happened upon the opportunity. And of course, Fake Huey Lewis goes without saying.

I called our cruise coordinator over the weekend and have some vacations on hold. We need to make a decision on the one week or two weeks. It'll probably end up being the two weeks. I could really love 14 days of tropical bliss. I just need to keep Mr. Anderson's casino time limited if we do 14 days, or he'll be in the poor house. He said, ‘‘What else is there to do?" That, my friends, is exactly why he needs to be part of the Rob & Tracye Quarterly Activity Club. Maybe he'll develop a few new interests! Not sure what will translate to cruise activities, but maybe something will. Read a book! That's what I'll be doing during the days at sea - I loved that! Me, a good book, the beautiful breezy saltwater air, and the drink of the day. Bliss, oh heavenly bliss!

Other than seeing Michael Clayton today, that about wraps it up. Kenny has been just teeming with ideas for new business ventures since he has an office to work out of, and I do believe a few things may turn out to be somewhat profitable. He is formulating a plan to rent out karaoke systems to various bars, and he has two interested partners. So who knows what might develop - maybe he'll be able to spend 14 days holed up in a casino by October! He's been working with my little brother lately, too, getting him a little bit of business lined up on the side so he can make ends meet a little bit easier. Chucky, I think, has enjoyed having someone like Kenny to really talk to about Ebay business stuff and they seem to be getting along pretty well. I'm happy; Chucky needs a friend or two. We all do. But the key is to be selective and not share yourself with people who drain the light from your being. That’s a life lesson that I hope I've finally learned.

Peace, and cherish your time - it really does fly by!

PS - I know, I know...more pictures of a cat. But I like him!! He's just so cute and soft.

PSS - Regarding my Something New for February, I've decided to embark on being an early riser for the month of February. So far it blows bagpipes, but I'm going to give it a full month just to see if it's as overrated as I think it is or if I really do get more out of the day by getting a jump on the worm.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

F-U N....

Superbowl Sunday. Hoo-rah. Yes, I'm half-heartedly watching, one eye on the television when something shiny or flashy catches my peripheral vision. I'm multi-tasking. Blogging, reading, whatnot. I just started - and finished - a book today, Derailed. Yes, the very same movie with Jennifer Aniston. I never saw that, so reading the book was all new for me. It was quite a page-turner. I had expected greater things out of my day, but the book got ahold of me and I barely left the chair. So now that's done and I can move on to accomplishing some stuff. Or I can just continue to sit in the chair and piss the rest of the night away. Which is what will most likely happen. Hey, nothing's actually expected of anyone on Superbowl Sunday other than watching the game. Everyone's downstairs at Timmy's watching the game, I wasn't volunteering for any parties up here because I just didn't need the pressure of a clean house. So there. Not that anyone asked - but I was firm in my stance regardless.

Over the weekend I enjoyed Girls Night In at my friend's house. It was a really good time, five of us got together and got to know each other a little bit better. We drank a good six or seven bottles of wine. Gabbed and chatted and ate and drank for six solid hours. The usual fun girl get-together stuff. When I arrived at the house the first thing that greeted me was a giant nipple on the television. Sex & The City DVD's were running - the perfect background for Girlfest.

In my ongoing quest to add newness to my 2008, Rob and I headed up a Quarterly Activity Club. That's the best name we came up with - how sad. My personal motto is, "I put the F-U in FUN!" Pretty catchy, I guess that used up all my creative juices. So anyway. we asked a small group of friends to join us as we embark on trying new things four times a year. The first get-together will be simple and semi-harmless; we're going to have a bowling night. We're planning a bit more adventureous things for the rest of the year, but didn't want to scare anyone off with horseback riding or dance classes right out of the gate. Let everyone see how much F-U N it can be first! I'm sure people will be clammoring for membership into the group once word gets out! Kenny has said he'll be happy when this idea dies on the vine and I move on to something else. He'd like to be excluded from the group, particularily once bike riding in the Metroparks was mentioned. Well, a little outdoor activity will be good for him, he just doesn't know it yet!
The tornado-intense winds of the past week knocked my uninhabited birds nest out of the crook of the gutter by my back porch. I was very sad when I discovered it face-down in the driveway by the garbage cans. I asked Kenny if we can try and wedge it back in place, he's not convinced that's a good idea. He would hate to stick it back up there and have another strong wind come through and knock it and a houseful of babies to the ground. But I want another little family of birds to watch this spring. I hope another little family comes back and those crazy winds cease.

I'm scheduled for a Toastmasters speech at the end of the month, I need to spend less time blogging and more time writing something to blab about to that group. Not sure what I'm going to talk about, maybe blogging. Maybe. Always hard to come up with the topics and write the speeches. Which is why I only completed two last year. Although I do participate a lot during the meetings, so that counts for something. We're having a Fat Tuesday party celebration this coming Tuesday, I need to come up with some food item to take to that.

It seems like that's all I've done for the past week. I was busy planning a co-workers baby shower (Kenny wants to know how in the HELL I got nominated to host a baby shower, seeing that's not exactly my first area of interest), and I spent the past week planning, organizing and hauling food around. The shower was pretty nice, I think, considering it's a work shower in a conference room. And it was the perfect occasion for a Becker's Cake, which I picked up and fully enjoyed eating. That was certainly the best part of the shower - the cake! Oh, yeah, and seeing the mother-to-be's happy glow, blah, blah, blah. Really, it was the cake :) I'm taking over her caption for her when she goes on maternity leave in a couple of weeks, so I hope that's a good change - something different to do for a couple of months at work.

That's about as exciting as life's been for the past week. I need to call my grandmother sometime tonight, it's been two weeks and I'm sure I'm on the Bad Granddaughter list by now. The days just go by so stinkin' fast - it's two weeks before I know it. As an aside, lest anyone think I'm exaggerating the extent of Sophie's .... frugalness, her heating bill for the month of December - in Ohio - was $11. Even with a wood-burning stove, that's just crazy and she must have had that heat set just high enough to keep the pipes from freezing. Well, what I can I do. She's lived 90 years, I guess she'll just do it her way. Cold or whatever.

Peace, and stay warm. Twink, I think, has been fighting a cold this week and has been sleeping his cat-ass off - even more so than usual. Conked out where ever he lays. So of course I annoy him by taking a multitude of photos - he's just so stinkin' cute!