Monday, January 30, 2006

Coffee head!

My family thinks I've lost my mind. There have been quite a few "Lucy Ricardo" type schemes I have pulled in the past, but this one takes the cake. I truly would not be surprised if, at any minute, men in white coats come to take me away; this scheme involves coffee. First, let me back-track a bit.

A few days ago, while on my mini-vacation, I decided I needed a change, and my crazy idea "took root" so to speak. I am a brunette with blonde highlights, and as I gazed at my reflection in the hotel bathroom mirror, I tried to think of a way to bring out those highlights. I'm not a fan of costly chemicals that will fry my hair, so I tried to think of a natural way to achieve my goal. Lemons? No. I was afraid it would bleach my hair, not to mention I feared my head would smell like rotten lemons after a few days. I remembered I had brought my book Amazing Kicken Cures along with me on the trip. It was filled with home remedy suggestions for things such as jelly fish stings and sunburns; surely they would have something about hair highlighting. After a few minutes of searching in the book, I found it:

(from the book)Maxwell House Coffee. Highlight brown or red hair by rinsing it with Maxwell House Coffee for a rich and shiny color (p. 174).

I don't have Maxwell House. I looked around the room and saw the coffee from breakfast in the pot. I bet Wolfgang Puck coffee would work though. I washed my hair, then took the cold coffee to the bathroom. I was just pouring it over my head when John walked into the hotel room.

"Hey Deb--" He stared at me in shock as I rubbed the coffee into my hair. "Um, baby. I think you drink coffee in a cup, not through your head."

"I know. I'm highlighting my hair."

"O-Okay then," he said backing out of the bathroom and eyeing my suspiciously. My hair did turn out shiny, but the ride home was strained the next day.

"I can't stand it anymore!" John yelped as he rolled down the windows. A blast of cool air hit me in the side of the head."

"Hey, what's the big idea?" I demanded, rolling the window up.

"It's your hair. It smells like coffee. I can smell it while I'm driving. I have the urge to pour creamer in your hair and sip on it." I knew John was joking, but I was not amused. My hair did have a strong odor of coffee.

This morning, as I poured my coffee, John watched me. "You are going to put that in a cup and not in your head aren't you?" I smiled sweetly and nodded. It's going to take a while to convince my family I'm not crazy.

Friday, January 27, 2006

Just what I needed

The past couple of days have been wonderful; just what I needed. After I wrote my last post, I took a deep breath and shut off the computer. My computer keyboard has almost become fused to fingers, and I hoped there would be enough activities in the next few days to keep mind occupied so I wouldn't go into "computer withdrawals". If I had a story idea, I would actually have to write it down on paper with a pen. Oh the torture of it!

My mind was more than occupied after I click off the computer. My mind was so full of things needed to be done, I'm sure there was a neon "no vacancy" sign flashing over my head as I raced around my house. Hmm, let's see, I pondered. Was I going to water the ivy and put out the cat, or was I supposed to water the cat and put out the ivy? Silly, I know; but when I'm extremely rushed, I turn into a real airhead sometime. Lucky for the kitty, I took a minute to focus on what I was doing and put him outside where he found his supply of food and water.

It's only a two hour trip to Corpus Christi, and I spent half of the time talking with John as he drove and the children slept in the back seat. It was refreshing to have a conversation without being interrupted. The rest of the time I spent gazing at the countryside and allowing my imagination to run wild. I love to explore, and imagined m riding my horse through the dense patches of woods. In my mind's eye, I would pause and dismount once in a while by a creek in the middle of the woods, allowing my horse to rest and graze while I sat under a giant oak and read a book in a patch of late afternoon sunshine.

In what seemed a short while, we arrived in Corpus, and I felt my excitement growing. Though I've been in the area several times, Corpus has a special place in my heart; it's the area in which I was born and lived in for a short while. My heart sang with happiness as I gazed upon the majestic buildings and the sparkling waters of the bay. In a sense, I was home.

We stayed in the Omni Bayfront on the ninth floor and had a gorgeous view of the bay. In the waning hours of daylight, I stood on the balcony and watched as two sailboats skimmed silently across the ba and out of my view. A brave seagull lit on the railing a few feet away from me, and flew away, squawking in disgust when he found I had no tasty tidbits for him. Everything seemed perfect until John announced the dinner plans.

"I thought we'd drive into Rockport and have dinner there." I was excited. As I mentioned in the last blog, I love going to Rockport. It's only a few minutes from Corpus; a pleasant trip. Judging from the look on John's face, I knew there was a catch.

"I have a feeling there's a 'but' or an 'and' that goes with your last statement," I said flatly.

John nodded his head. I've invited ----------to come along with us. I need you to ride in the back seat with the boys."

I felt my excitement deflate like a leaky balloon. Oh joy, I thought rather childishly, not only do I not have my family by myself, I get to share it with a stranger. ---------- was not really a total stranger; he worked with John, and John was the chief investigator,---------'s supervisor. I decided to act my age, and have a great time that night regardless.

We went to The Big Fisherman and ate the most wonderful seafood I've ever had in my life. Everything was fresh and cooked to perfection. There was a large crowd there, but since the restaurant sat 200 people, everything was spacious and the noise was minimal.

I'm a firm believer everything happens for a reason, and it soon became obvious there was a reason for ---------- to be there. During the course of the meal, ---------- told me John bragged on me on the time. He bragged on my musical successes in high school, and on my current writing successes.

I had always thought my past and present successes were of little interest to my hubby. I felt a lump for in my throat as --------- told me everything John had said about me. I stared at John, and from the look in his eyes, I could tell ----------was telling me the truth. I always knew John loved me, but until this point, never knew he loved me as deeply as I loved him. It was an eye-opener.

The next day, while John was in class, the boys and I walked 2 miles up Shoreline Drive. Along the way we visited the memorial to Selena, and later the Corpus Christi art gallery. We were "too pooped to pop" by the time we returned, and spent the rest of the afternoon at the hotel.

I'm an early-riser, and early the next morning I stood on the balcony and watched the sun rise over the bay. After the sun rose, I saw something magical in the bay. I wiped my eyes in disbelief. No way! surely I'm imagining this, I thought. I stared harder. There it was again. First a fin emerged out of the water, then the sleek back of a dolphin. Amazing. My excitement grew as I saw more dolphins emerge. A whole pod! It was obvious they were feeding off the fish scraps thrown off the docked boats. What a perfect way to end the vacation.

I have pictures I'll post later on.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

What a day and a pleasant surprise

Ever had a day where everything seemed to go wrong? It happened to me yesterday.

I had an early morning hair appointment with my friend, and both the toddler and I woke up late. When I woke up, it was 8 A.M., and I supposed to be at her house by 9. Crap! I jumped into the shower and changed into my clothes. I'll put my makeup on while the baby sleeps. Seems simple enough, right? Wrong! I couldn't find any of my makeup. Double-crap! I decided to scare the world and go without makeup.

I hurridly dressed Robert while he slept. No baby likes to be awakened to having their clothes pulled off, and Robert let me know about it. He pouted as I dressed him, then refused to eat breakfast. "Come on baby! Mama doesn't have time for this," I pleaded. He set his lips together firmly and shook his head. Oatmeal is usually his breakfast of choice, but he stoutly refused it. "Want Cheerios," he stated firmly.

"Fine. Whatever." I ran to the pantry and poured him Cheerios. I usually don't give in, but today I was in a hurry. He nibbled the cereal happily as I went in search for the keys. Argh! I couldn't find the darn things. Then it occured to me that John had used my Jimmy the night before. Darn it! He has my keys! I felt my blood pressure rising. I stormed to the phone and called him on his cell.

"Where are the keys?"

"Oh, I don't know."

I was beginning to reach my boiling point. "What do you mean you don't know? You had them last."

"Oh yeah. They're in my jacket pocket." I hung up the phone and found his jacket. Sure enough, in the pocket, where the keys. I and Robert raced outside to the Jimmy. Yea! We had five minutes to spare! I strapped him into his car seat, plopped into the driver's seat turned the ket and. . .nothing. The truck wouldn't start. This can't be happening! I took the toddler out of the seat and stalked back inside. I had a hair and a dentist appointment, and both would have to be cancelled. I called my beautician friend first.

"I'm sorry, I have to cancel."


"Because my @#$% truck will not start."

My friend owns her own shop, and insisted on picking me up so I could keep my appointment. We chatted while she cut my hair, making it take 2 hours, but during that time I felt the knots in my muscles loosen asI relaxed. At last, something went right!

When I got back home, I called my sweet hubby, and he dropped me off at the dentist. "So, how's the day going?"

The dam burst. Through my tears, Itold him about the truck and not being able to find my makeup. "So I had to go to --------'s house nude." I blubbered.

"Wait a minute. You went to -------'s house with no clothes on?" The look on John's face was priceless, and I had to laugh.

"No silly. My face was nude. . .as in no makeup."

John was relieved. He studied me intently. "How about a break? Would you and the kids like to go to the conference with me tomorrow?" I didn't hesitate. The answer was a resounding "yes."

I need the break, and the Texas coast might inspire me to come up with more story ideas. So, this morning I'm running around like a headless chicken trying to get everything packed so we can leave this afternoon. The kids are coming of course.

I wanted to tell everyone "thank-you" for all the wonderful warm comments you all left on my last post. It meant a lot to me, and I'm so blessed to have such wonderful friends.

See ya when I get back! Hugs to all!


Nicole has tagged me! Here are my "Fun With Fours"

Four Jobs You’ve Had

1. Waitress at Pizza Hut while in high school (Ugh. I try to forget)
2. Working at a girl's "half-way" house
3. Wal-Mart (hated that one)
4. Deputy sheriff

Four Movies You Could Watch Over and Over
1. Steel Magnolias
2. Skeleton Key
3. Hide and Seek
4. Any Disney movie

Four Places You’ve Lived
1. Rosebud, TX
2. San Marcos, TX
3. New Braunfels, TX
4. San Marcos, TX (I moved back from New Braunfels. Yep, I know I'm a stinker for listing it twice)

Four TV Shows You Love To Watch
1. The Golden Girls
3. Martha

4. Four of Your Favorite Books
1. Tiger Eyes by Judy Blume
2. Black Creek Crossing by John Saul
3. Mama Makes up her Mind by Bailey White
4. Chicken Soup for the Dog Lover's Soul (Surprising, huh? LOL)

Four Places You’ve Been On Vacation
1. Cancun
2. New Orleans, Louisiana
3. Colorado Springs, Colorado
4. A little border town next to Del Rio, TX (We stayed in Del Rio and walked across the border)

Four Websites You Visit Daily
1. Freelance Writing
2. Care2
3. all the blogs on my list
4. Writer's Weekly

Four of Your Favorite Foods
1. Cashew Chicken
2. Red grapes
3. homemade spaghetti sauce (either mine or John's recipe. It slow cooks for eight hours. The smell is wonderful!)
4. fajitas

Four Places You Would Rather Be Right Now
1. At my mom's ranch (I love to take rides through the woods on horseback)
2. Cancun
3. Riodosa, New Mexico (a family friend has a cabin in the mountains)
4. Rockport, Texas (It's a small tourist/fishing town, but it has a "blue water beach" and the locals are wonderful It's a great place to go when you're seaching inspiration. The have art galleries, java houses, and cute little shops)

Four people I'm tagging:

Anyone who wants to play!

Sunday, January 22, 2006

A near tragedy

I prefer to walk in the cover of darkness. The melodic chirps of the cricket and the occasional melancholy cooing of the mourning dove add to the soothing peacefulness of the countryside. In the distance, lights illuminate front porches, and children’s voices are heard as they journey home from a playmate’s house. The lights from the town below sparkle brightly against the dark canvas of the night sky. For that that brief period, all is right with the world.

Walking at night relaxes me, and helps me focus on the manuscript I’m working on. My driveway is ½ mile long, so there’s really no worry about being hit by a car or abducted. Yeah right. My captors would bring me back after five minutes, and then check themselves into the local mental institution.

It’s during these walks though, that strange things occur. I’ve had two dogs re-appear I had given up on; my neighbor scared the heck out of me at Christmas when she followed me down the drive in her car to give me a present. Tonight was no exception.

I was on my second trip down the driveway, when I saw an orange glow in the pasture near my house, and the unmistakable smell of smoke in the air. Fire!

Texas is in a severe drought, and the vegetation is tinder-dry. A car parked on the side of the road with the motor running, or a cigarette flicked out of a car by a careless soul can be devastating.

I felt everything was in slow motion, and my legs felt like they belonged to someone else, as I ran down the drive back to my house. I flung open the front door, hurdled the toddler playing on the floor, and jogged to my bedroom. “I’m going to call the neighbors and 911, I called to John as I passed him in the kitchen. I can’t believe how calm I was. I knew if I acted excited, it would do nothing but upset the children. I didn’t want them to know the fire was less then 300 yards away, and growing.

John followed me to the bedroom, as I expected, looked out the window and saw the fire. “You call 911, and I’ll call the neighbors on my cell,” he said.

Literally, within a couple of seconds, I heard the welcome voice of the 911 dispatcher.

“911, what’s your emergency?”

“There’s a large grass fire on the --------- ranch,” I gasped.

“Yes madam. That’s already been called in. The trucks have been dispatched and should arrive shortly. Please call us back and alert us if any structures are in danger,” she soothed.

“Yeah! My house!”

“I’m sorry. You said your house was in danger?” The operator’s voice rose a couple of octaves in alarm.

“Yes. The fire is 300 yards from my house and coming closer.” I heard the dispatcher call the fire trucks and relay the information. She again reassured me the trucks would be there soon. John and I went outside to watch and wait.

The fire had grown quite a bit. It was now billowing above the mesquite trees. I’ve never seen flames that high. It seemed like eternity, but soon we heard the wail of the fire trucks, and saw the flickering red and blue lights as they arrived on the scene. The silence of the night was broken by the sound of the fire chief barking commands to his men. Within minutes, the fire was out, and again, all was right with the world.

I can’t help but be misty-eyed this morning when I think of the brave men that so valiantly fought the blaze. Without a second thought, they left the comfort of their homes and families to battle a fire for someone they didn’t even know. They put their lives on the line for others and me. For that, I am eternally grateful.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Take a "gander"

The last time I was at my mother's house, I came across an old photo album I kept as a teen. The quality of the pictures may not be great--I took them many, many years ago--but there are a couple of pictures where I really what to point something out.

These are two horses that we used to own; a mare and her foal. Please pay special attention to the white marking on the foal's side. Does it look like something familiar? We didn't paint this on the foal, he was actually born with these markings.

Oh look, chicken and dressing! LOL. I could say we couldn't afford dolls, so I had to dress banty chickens in doll clothes, but that would be a lie. I was a tomboy and perfered my animals to dolls. My chickens were all banties, and were all good-natured. I was a kid with a corn-ball personality; I guess it *ahem* followed me into adulthood. *No chickens were hurt at the time this picture was taken.

I grew up in the Texas "Blackland Praire" region. This is how winters used to look when I lived at home. No snow now. *sigh* In this pic I was focusing on the old, weathered wind chime outside my window.
Last of all, here's yours truly with hubby a few years ago. I know the picture isn't in color, but I had made the unwise decision to dye my hair red. Never again; it didn't turn out right.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Things that make you go "Eew!"

*If you're eating or have a weak stomach, you might want to stop reading here.

We've all heard of the fried lizard in the french fries and fingers in chili; but have you ever thought about what you may have eaten? Here are a couple of things that have happened to me.

1. A few years ago I bought a 20 oz. name brand soda in the check-out line at Wal-Mart. When I got home, I opened the bottle and contentedly gulped the icy goodness while I cleaned my house. I took one last gulp before throwing the bottle away. . .but wait. . .something fuzzy was in my mouth. I raced to the bathroom and spit into the toilet. There was a fly! A fly had been in my soda! feeling sick, I grabbed the bottle and dialed the number for the company's consumer affairs. The poor soul on the other line barely had a chance to say hello before I blurted, 'There's a fly in my soda!"

"I'm sorry, there's a what in your what?" the voice on the other end of the line asked.

"A fly. A fly in my soda. No. I didn't put it there."

"Eew, disgusting! Did you keep the fly?"

Duh. Like I'd keep it as a prize. "No," I responded.

"Okay. I'll send you a pre-paid box, and you'll send me the soda bottle for us to analyze."

Within a few days, the box arrived in the mail and I happily sent the bottle to the company. A few days later, I received a call from the same customer service rep.

"Ms. Roppolo, I'm so very sorry that happened to you. Our scientists analyzed the remaining contents and determined the fly had been in the bottle a very long time." I felt the need to hurl, but the woman continued.
"I've sent you a letter you should be receiving in the next few days."

True to her word, the letter arrived five days later. Inside were coupons for 3 free 12 packs of the soda.

2. Last year, after a long morning at the doctor's office, the boys and I stopped by our local grocery store to have the prescriptions filled. "We're backed up, so the wait will be an hour, my pharmacist explained.

"An hour? I'll starve to death before then," Seth whined.

"I'm hungry," Robert chimed in. My stomach growled loudly as I looked at my watch. It was past noon, and I was so hungry myself, I could have eaten one of the stores frozen dinners as it was: frozen. We climbed back into the car and drove across the street to a popular restaurant. The boys had food off the kid's menu, and I had a Cobb salad. My poor deprived stomach was in heaven with each bite I took.

"Hey Mama. What's that on Robert's hot dog bun?" Seth asked. I examined the bun. There was a dark green spot near the corner. MOLD! I got the waitress's attention, and quietly--yes quietly because I didn't want to cause a scene--told her about the bun. She took one look, gagged, and ran off to the kitchen with the bun. She returned with the manager who apologized profusely, and offered us free desserts. The kids were up for it, but I have a problem with taking things I don't feel I deserve, and declined.

The bun was an oversight on the part of the cook; a mistake. I made sure the manager knew I wasn't angry over the bun, and that I wasn't going to sue. I had been a waitress many years ago, and I understood how these things could happen. My suggestion was he check the rest of the buns.

Moral of the stories: Watch what you eat and drink. Literally.

Saturday, January 14, 2006

You never know (title change)

I'm exhausted.. Company is coming in the morning, and the house is spotless. I learned a valuable lesson today. Never enter a pre-teen boy's room without first leaving dental records so your remains can be identified. Seth is a packrat, and his room is proof. It took me forty-five minutes, but I finally cleaned his room until it passed my expectations. I cleaned everything, that is, except his closet. Oh leave it alone. No one will open the closet.

I had almost convinced myself to leave the "forbidden zone" alone when my darn inner voice took over. What will people think if they do open the closet? What will it say about your housekeeping skills? I've been classified as a "neat freak" by those closest to me, so in the end my inner voice won out.

Hmph. Judging from what I've found in this room, I wouldn't be surprised if there was a body in here. I opened the door and peered inside. Clothes littered the floor of the closet, and board games were perch precariously on the top shelf. I shook my head in disgust. Where to begin? Oh well, might as well start with these video games, I thought, climbing on a stool. Games were stacked level with my nose. I peered at the top of the stack and was eye-to-eye with . . .a skull! There was a skull sitting on top of the games. After my heart began to pitter-patter again, and I got up the nerve, I climbed omto the stool and looked at the skull again. I was relieved to see it was the skull of a coyote Seth had found the previous summer on my mom's property. Holding it by an eye socket, I tossed the hideous thing in the trash and resumed my battle against grime.

Here's a link I got from Nicole's blog. It's how daring I am. Interesting. Seems I have a dark side.

You Are a Fierce Femme

You have a wild side, and you aren't afraid to bring it out when the time is right.
But you also know when to hang back and keep your "crazy chick" persona in check.
In fact, some of your friends may be surprised to find out how far you can take it...
You may look mild mannered, but it's all an act!

Ooh. Here's a shocker (LOL) This one tells what kind of guy I should marry.

You Should Date An Italian!

You love for old fashioned romance, with an old fashioned guy
An Italian guy is the perfect candidate to be your prince charming
If your head doesn't spin enough, just down another espresso with him
Invest in a motorcycle helmet - and some carb blocker for all that pasta!

Thursday, January 12, 2006

The late Christmas miracle

I haven't been myself lately. In addition to having had bronchitis, and two children ill, I'm restless with anticipation. I sent two of my children's' chapter book manuscripts off to different publishers several months ago, and the decision time lurks just around the corner. One publisher sent one of the manuscripts back, said they liked the storyline, but to put a different "spin" on it. I modified the story to their specifications and sent it back. I should be hearing from them any day now.

Every night my poor hubby gets assaulted when he walks in the door. "I'm fine? How are you?" he asks wryly as I take the mail and rifle through it. It's always the same results. . .no letter yet. The other night I couldn't stand it; couldn't be in the house another second. I haven't been able to exercise for two weeks, and that's taken it's toll on me as well. I have to be active.

The boys were watching a movie with their dad as I took my jacket out of the hall closet and quietly slipped outside. We've had uncommonly warm weather this year in Texas, but tonight the air had a pleasant chill to it. There were thousands of stars in the cloudless sky, and they sparkled like diamonds against a dark canvas. Breath-taking. I shivered in the cold and slipped into my jacket. A wave of sadness washed over me as I zipped it. The last time I wore this, Blue and I walked up and down the drive together.

I sat on the steps and put on my shoes. Stupid, I chastised myself, why did you let your guard down? Why did you let yourself fall in love with him? You knew you would get hurt. Ever since Snowflake died. . .
I laid back on the cold concrete of the porch and stared at the sky in attempts to stop the tears I felt forming in my eyes.

Snowflake had been my dog when I was a teen. The last dog my dad had given me. The minute the dog and I met, we clicked and were inseparable. She was more then a dog, she was my best friend. I was devastated when she was killed by a car. That was years ago, and I had never allowed myself to get close to another dog until Blue came along.

He was a Malamute/Husky mix, and had eyes as blue as a summer sky. He had an engaging personality, and after a few days, I was in love with a dog again, and it felt wonderful. Now, he was gone, and there was a void in my heart where he had been.

As I lay there feeling sorry for myself, I felt something nudge my foot. Probably the cat. Another nudge, this time harder. I raised myself up, and found myself nose to nose with. . .Blue!

I swallowed nervously and prayed I wasn't dreaming. "B-Blue. I-Is that you?" Blue cocked his head to the side, then sat on his haunches and offered me his paw. It was Blue! I bellowed the news into the house, and the porch was a swarm of activity. The boys, John and I all fussed and hugged the dog. After the newness had worn off, the male members of the family went back inside, leaving me alone with the dog.

I dropped to my knees and wrapped my arms around his fluffy neck. "I missed you so much," I whispered into his ear. I had gotten a late, but much needed, Christmas miracle.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006


I hate when this happens. Late last night I made a horrifying discovery when I was re-arranging the fridge. One of the male occupants put the milk jug back in the fridge with just a few drops of milk left in it. I say that it just had to be one of the boys, because I--ahem--never make such an error. Yeah right! Let me back away from the computer screen before lightning strikes me.

Being out of milk meant there would be nothing for breakfast the next morning, and the scene would be nasty. When my crew is hungry, you take your life in your hands just being around them. Reach for that last dinner roll and you might draw back a nub. After a long weekday, they sit around the dunner table, drool running down their face, their mouths twisted in wolf-like snarls, knives and forks poised and ready to strike. It's not quite that bad; I'm exaggerating. I'm close to being that way over the last cup of coffee though. : ).

I couldn't let my family go hungry, so this morning at 2 A.M., I made homemade donuts. I felt like the Dunkin Donut man from the commercial as I sleepily shuffled into the kitchen and made the pastries. It was all worth it in the end; my family heaped praise and gratitude on me for all my hard work. I've included the recipe if you're interested.


4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
4 Tablespoons butter
1 pkg. yeast
1 1/2 cup warm water
1 teaspoon salt

Mix all dry ingredients, except the sugar and set aside. Mix warm water, sugar, and yeast together in another bowl, stirring until dissolved. Add to the dry ingredients and mix well. Add the melted butter and mix well. A slightly sticky ball should begin to form. Dump the ball of dough on a lightly floured surface and knead well.

Place into a lightly oiled bowl, and cover. Place in a warm, draft-free, place and allow to rise for 1 hour.

After allowing the dough to rise, return to lightly-floured surface and roll out dough to 1" thickness. Cut out the donuts, and the inner circle of the donut with *biscuit cutters.

Allow to rise for another 10 minutes. In the meantime, heat oil--according to manufacturer's specifications--in a Fry Daddy, or any other deep fat fryer. After the dough has risen, fry the donuts one at a time in the oil. Cook each side for no longer then 13 seconds. Allow donuts to drain and cool on a plate lined with paper towels. Glaze

* I use cutters that at 3 1/2" and 2" across.


3 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup Tampico orange drink

Combine all ingredients, stirring well. Of course, more liquid makes the mixture thinner, less makes it thicker.


Nicole has tagged me :)!

Weirdo 5: Five Weird Things About Me

1. I once led a horse into my mother's house--I was a teen at the time. My mom had some men re-doing her house, and they saw me leading an orphan foal around the yard. "That foal follows you real well," the foreman grinned. "Bet she wouldn't follow you into the house."

Daddy had died a few months earlier, and I had a "don't @#$% with me attitude." I knew that they had just ripped up the flooring, and there was now particle board as the sub-flooring. "Watch me." As obedient as a dog, the tiny foal trip-trapped up the steps, across the porch, and into the house behind me. The men's jaws dropped in shock as we re-appeared outside. "Don't dare me to do anything," I said coolly to the speechless foreman.

2. I have a cat that rides a bike--My cat, Sassy, likes to ride on the seat of my bicycle as I push it down the driveway.

3. I like catsup in my chili--Jon thinks it's gross, but I like it.

4. I play NASCAR in Wal-Mart--I sometimes make car racing noises for my toddler as we cruise up and down the aisles in the shopping cart if he's fussy.

5. I once chased after a dog who had my underwear--My now missing dog, Blue, took my undies of the closeline and ran off down the driveway. It was 5 o'clock in the afternoon, people were driving home from work, and here comes a Husky running at them with undies in his mouth. A few steps behind him is a disheveled young woman--me--gasping "give me back my underwear you crazy mutt!"

After a few minutes of playing a merry game of "catch-me-if-you-can," I finally got my clothing. I was laughing so hard I could barely breathe.

Five people I'm tagging:
Big Dave

Sunday, January 08, 2006

That's what she gets for changing me

Thanks to all of you for the warm "get well" wishes you sent to me and my family. We're all doing better now, just a few lingering coughs every now and then.


As you can tell, I grew up a "daddy's girl." Ever since I can remember, Daddy took me almost everywhere he went. When he moved cattle, my fat little pony was saddled, and I rode at the rear of the herd, keeping the cows from straying. Daddy was smart; he knew I wanted to help and he wanted me with him, so he put me the safest place there was, at the rear. Cattle are mindless creatures--not as mindless as sheep--and once you get the lead cattle headed the way you want, all the others follow. There's no real danger "bringing up the rear."

My mother was a gentile lady--like Victoria Barkley on Big Valley-- and it pained her to see her "little darling" riding tractors and working cattle. When I was born, she had visions of frilly frocks and hair ribbons; instead she got ripped jeans and hair with mesquite twigs tangled in it. "She's a girl, and she needs to act like one," Mama complained to Daddy on more then one occasion.

"Who says girls can't be strong emotionally and physically?" Daddy always retorted. "No one will take agvantage of when she grows up."

When I was twelve, my daddy taught me how to break a horse. He believed you would have a more useful animal if you treated the horse with respect, and broke them in different stages. A year later he beamed with pride when I saddle broke a young colt all by myself, and rode it around the corral. He was turning me into a modern day version of "Ellie Mae Clampett," and my mama didn't like it one bit.

After many lectures to Daddy, my mama finally convinced him that his thirteen year-old darling should learn how to be a young lady; Daddy reluctantly agreed. I hated wearing the confining dresses to church every Sunday, and I hated how I wobbled like a new born colt when I wore those stupid heels.

No amount of pleading could sway Daddy back over to my side. He had seen how I looked, and sadly admited it was time for his "best hand" to grow up. Over time, with help, I got used to wearing the clothes. The "help" came in the form of boys. I had started to notice them, and I liked how they noticed me. One day after church, I got more recognition then I bargained for.

I went to a restaurant with my mom where I saw two of the most yummy looking guys. On my pre-planned jaunt to the restroom, I made sure they made eye contact with me as I walked past their table. Score! They looked at me and smiled. On the way back from the restroom, I thought I would give them a little extra show by wiggling my behind as I walked past again. Their jaws dropped, and I thought I had them; then I felt Mom's hand cclutching my shoulder, and her hot breath in my ear.

"You have your dress tucked into the back of your pantyhose, and everyone can see your polka-dotted undies," she hissed. I wanted to melt into the floor. Oh well, I never saw those guys again, thank goodness. Sorry Mom. That's what you get for changing me.

Note: I do actually enjoy wearing dresses now, especially the "after 5" dresses on special occasions. I'm still paranoid if I feel a draft though :).

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Ever heard the phrase. . .

Ever heard the phrase "can't find your butt with both hands"? This morning I couldn't find my head. Yep. . .that's right. . .couldn't find it. I woke up this morning and found myself draped across my bed, never fully realizing my head was hanging over the side. I raised my hand to scratch the back of my head, and it was gone! My head was gone!

"Somebody help me! I lost my head," I screamed. The only answer was the ticking of the bedroom clock on the wall. I had forgotten school started back today, and my hubby was back at work. I knew better then to call to Robert for help; if he found my head, he would probably use it as a bocce ball.

"Okay, I need to calm down. My head has to be around here somewhere. It couldn't have just popped off and rolled somewhere. Maybe it's under the bed." Dummy me. The whole time I was talking out loud, never realizing my precious noggin was still attached.

Finally the sound of Robert waking up caused me to jerk my head up. "Oh, here it is on my shoulders! Right where I left it!" I am sooooooo glad John wasn't home to witness this brief moment of insanity.

Let me explain myself. In the past three days, I've gotten about twelve total hours of sleep. Having two sick children, and a roaring chase of bronchitis myself has made it almost impossible to sleep. Last night was the first decent night's rest I've gotten, and I guess my body caught up with me. I have to face it; I can't go for days without sleep anymore. I'm not as young as I used to be. *Sigh*

Hook Em' Horns!

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Oh, one more thing

I forgot to put this in the last post, but if you're interested in a good online children's magazine, please check out Holiday Crafts for Kids. The magazine editor, Nancy Cavanaugh does a wonderful job of putting it together, and each month is focused on a different theme or holiday.

I'm excited, delighted, and deeply honored that my children's story, "Things That Go Bump in the Night" is on page 11 of the January issue. Enjoy!

Monday, January 02, 2006

New Years

I hope everyone had a wonderful New Year and a very Merry Christmas!

New Year's Eve was uneventful for us. The boys and I sat around and did our best sea lion impersonations by coughing for John. He swears he won't get this nasty stuff; yeah right! Maybe if he keeps repeating that to himself, then clicks his heels together he'll wind up in Kansas. Sorry about that, I'm very cynical when I'm under the weather. I hope John doesn't get sick, but the deck is stacked against him.

John went above and beyond to insure we had fun New Year's Eve. He made an unexpected trip to the store and returned with delights such as purple grapes, cheese, and veggie and fruit trays. He also rented Dukes of Hazzard--which was a disappointment--and The Exorcism of Emily Rose. We waited until the kids were asleep before having a mixed drink-- an "Orange Russian" for myself, and a "Kahlua Mudslide" for John--and watching . . .Emily Rose. Yeah, I know. I'm a glutton for punishment, but I do enjoy watching the horror movies. The movie doesn't bother me while I'm watching it; it's in the wee hours of the morning. Sometimes I wake up, and in my groggy state, start thinking about the movie. My instincts become hyper-sensative as I hear, see, and feel the smallest things. That's when the crap gets scared out of me.

What bothered me the most about . . .Emily Rose is that it actually happened. Voodoo and demonic possession are high on my "fear factor" list.