Tuesday, February 28, 2006

On The Road Again

"Something's going on."

Yep, this is exactly what my husband's boss told him yesterday. Just to give you a little background, the rumors have been flying at his company - let's call them "Corporation Asshat" - for the past four months, and they're all about my husband - let's call him "Golden Boy of the Moment".

He's at the top of list to be promoted next which is all good, I'm very proud of him and he deserves it. However, this does mean yet another move for us. (Just to catch you up, we move every 2-3 years due to his job.) For those of you who have moved, you know how stressful the whole process is. I'm trying to be happy for him and be the good corporate wifey but it is a struggle. Just as I start to make some good friends, find my way around (yes, this takes me two years as I am seriously geographically challenged. I've insisted a street existed only to be informed the street I was thinking of is back in that other state we used to live in), and find doctors, dentists, hairdressers, etc. that I like, we move. Again.

So, when his boss says, "Something's going on" that is Corporation Asshat speak for "Pack your bags, you're outta here." Now of course we don't know WHERE yet, oh no, that would be too freakin' easy. Each week for the past four months my husband has come home convinced we're moving to a different state. Do you know how stressed that makes me? Why can't he see that and keep his mouth shut until he actually KNOWS?

I'm also very nervous about this next job of his because it is actually a job for me too. Oh, didn't you know that "Corporate Wife" is actually an occupation? Of course there's no pay or benefits...The responsibilites include hosting numerous parties where you are required to be able to talk on any subject while serving fabulous Coq au Vin and gallons of wine which WILL be spilled on your carpet by loud obnoxious "guests" who want to party all night. You are also required to plan several amazing outings and weekend getaways - and then host them - for people that you don't know and usually don't want to know. I just don't like the whole "fake", insincere attitude I get from a lot of these people.

The silver lining is that when we move we'll have to close our checking account here and open one in the new state. As I'm responsible for balancing the checkbook which hasn't balanced in oh, about 16 months, this is definitely an upside to moving! Need a drink and chocolate, gotta go.

Monday, February 27, 2006

What Color is Your Brain?

WHAT COLOR IS YOUR BRAIN?

Blue

I'm BLUE:

At work or in school: I like to be with
people, sharing with them, inspiring them,
and helping them. I work and learn best when
I can take into consideration people and the
human element. I flourish in an atmosphere
of cooperation.

With friends: I always look for perfect
love. I am very romantic, and I enjoy doing
thoughtful things for others. I am
affectionate, supportive and a good
listener.

With family: I like to be happy and loving.
I am very sensitive to rejection from my
family and to family conflicts. I really
like to be well thought of and need frequent
reassurance. I love intimate talks and warm
feelings.

I saw this fun quiz (
What Color is Your Brain?) over at mar's site. I actually thought the quiz was pretty accurate, especially regarding the family part. What color is your brain??

MONDAY MEMORIES #1


With Lent approaching (Ash Wednesday is this week although I always know Lent is coming by when Mardi Gras is) I thought I'd share my memory of When I Gave Up Chocolate for Lent.

Recall that TWO of my posts last week were about chocolate so you know I'm seriously addicted. I luuuuuuuuurve it lots.

Anyhoo, I had this great idea I was going to give up chocolate for Lent - my biggest sacrifice ever. God was going to be SO proud. I think giving up meat for the rest of my life (instead of just Fridays during Lent) would have been easier. But oh no, I was determined. My husband, who was my fiance at the time and therefore willing to go along with all my stupid ideas, agreed to also give up chocolate. He doesn't worship at the House of Chocolate like I do, but he definitely has a sweet tooth so this would be a sacrifice for him too, although a lesser one let me note in case God is reading my blog today.

Let me just sum up the experience - excruciating. You never know how badly you need, want, must have, cannot live without something until you are denied it. I decided things would go easier if I had something to look forward to. So, I went online and found all the most expensive, decadent chocolate I could - I was ordering from Belgium, Italy and Switzerland without a thought to the horror that would show up on my credit card when all those liras were converted to dollars.

Pounds and pounds of lovely chocolate arrived on my doorstep shortly before Easter (the official end of Lent for those of you who may not know). Everyday I looked at it longingly. My fiance and I talked about eating it every night when we came home from work, but we remained strong. Until the Saturday night before Easter Sunday. All it took was my fiance saying that it was "close enough" to Easter. We tore into those boxes, wrappers flying and started stuffing our faces - milk chocolate, dark chocolate, white chocolate with caramels, creams, liquor centers - oh joy! It went something like this: "Did you try the Hazelnut truffle with a caramel center and dark chocolate sprinkles" I asked? "Oh yes," my fiance answered and asked, "Do we have any of the Raspberry White Chocolate thingies left?"

Oh, the guilt. Let me tell you, there is NOTHING like Catholic guilt. Any Catholics out there can no doubt relate. I had failed and I regretted it deeply. But damn did that chocolate taste good! I have to confess after that Lent 6 years ago, I have never given up something so near and dear to me again in fear I would fail so spectacularly as I did with the Chocolate Incident. Instead, I try to DO something rather than give up something. This year I'm resolving to be more patient (at least during Lent, can't predict what might happen the Saturday before Easter Sunday). I'll let ya know how that goes...

Please visit these other great Monday Memories:
  1. Snickerdoodles
  2. LadyBug
  3. Ocean Lady
  4. Kdubs

Friday, February 24, 2006

Must Have Chocolate

In a previous post I was dreaming about opening a chocolate lounge and eating chocolate with friends to my heart's content. I mentioned at the end how all the chocolate talk reminded me of how I was humiliated at a local chocolate store last year. So, here's the story...

My most embarrassing moment was last year at this same time - just after Valentine's Day which every chocoholic knows it's the best time to buy chocolate because it's on SALE. Yep, huge sales. I remember that it was a very cold Saturday but I was determined to go out and get my chocolate before everyone else bought it all (yea, I wasn't really rational but anyone who has experienced a chocolate craving can relate).

So, I made my husband take me to this local shop that makes homemade chocolate - no regular 'ol Hershey bar would do for this gal. So, after much comparing I decided on a HUGE 2 lb. box - red and heart shaped, no less! As I'm carrying it to the cash register, what appeared to be a sweet, elderly salesperson said to me, "Oh my, your baby is really going to enjoy all that chocolate!"

My husband looked at me to see if I had become instantaneously pregnant while in the store. I looked behind me because I was SURE this beyatch was not talkin' to ME! I am a very average size 8 for heaven's sake. Now, as I said, it was cold. So, I had wrapped this big fleece scarf around my neck and put my coat over it, so my coat was poufing out over my stomach, but come on! I was mortified.

A lesser person would have set the chocolate down, walked out of the store, and put in 2 hours at the gym. I just looked at the salesperson for a couple of seconds, walked up to the counter with my chocolate and said, "Why yes he will" while patting my stomach and pointing to a big chocolate covered pretzel adding, "And, I'll have one of those, too."

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Thirteen Places I've Been on Vacation

Thirteen Places I've Been on Vacation
  1. Oahu (who wouldn’t like 12 days in Hawaii! It was very special because good friends of ours were renewing their vows and asked us to come and be their witnesses – can’t turn that down.)
  2. Charleston, SC (surprise Valentine’s Day present from my husband who was then my fiancé)
  3. New Orleans (another surprise from my husband for my birthday last year – 3 weeks before Katrina hit)

  4. Half Moon Bay, CA
    (One of the stops on our honeymoon along with San Fran and Napa Valley. We stayed in a very modern B&B that overlooked the ocean. The town was so quaint and beachy. Just fun, relaxing and special.)

  5. Whistler, British Columbia (one of the most beautiful places on earth.)

  6. Windham Hill, VT (near Manchester, home of awesome outlets. Husband and I stayed at the Windham Hill B&B two autumns in a row while living in NY. The views were literally postcard-perfect – mist drifting in front of trees with leaves of every color and the Green Mountains right in front of you.)

  7. Ochos Rios, Jamaica (I actually didn’t like Jamaica because it was hard to see the abject poverty and I didn’t feel safe leaving the resort. However, we had an awesome time with the other couple we went with – lots of drinking at the swim up pool bar. Great resort – it was a Sandals, couples only!)
  8. Scotland (spent a long weekend there when I was in London for a summer and it was like “the land time forgot”. Little thatch cottages with sheep everywhere and green, green rolling hills. Stunning.)

  9. Italy (What made the trip so great is we stayed with family all over the country so we always had great “guides” to show us all the wonderful sights. In 2 ½ weeks, the only restaurant I ate in was a cousin’s pizza place – everyone wanted to cook for us so we were never allowed to eat out, oh darn!)

  10. New Hope, PA (cool little town full of charm, B&Bs and galleries)

  11. Cancun, MX (had an awesome time here even though I really didn’t see much of Cancun because the resort – Fiesta Americana – was so wonderful. Best service I’ve ever had anywhere! This was one of my Husband’s reward trips and it was first class all the way)

  12. St. Thomas (the color of the ocean here was amazing)

  13. Atlantis, Bahamas (this is a “trip to be” that we’re going on in June. Another reward trip of hubby’s so I’m sure it will be great.)

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

A Sweet Place to Lounge

Guess what is predicted to be one of the hottest, or let me say - sweetest, trends in 2006?

Chocolate lounges! Oh, I'm in heaven. No more hiding the box of chocolates and sneaking them when no one is looking. Now, women are being encouraged to eat rich, sinful chocolate WITH each other while gossiping and relaxing in chic, sophisticated lounges. You know, the kind with the dim mood lighting and the big comfy couches. I just love saying that word, come on, say it out loud with me, looouuuuunnnngggessss. Doesn't it just sound so sexy and decadent?

Seriously, trend-watching firm Datamonitor called chocolate "the new coffee" in a list of top 10 trends to watch in 2006. That actually cracks me up - "the new coffee". Kind of like every year when the fashionistas come out with a color that is pronounced "the new black". And then I go buy an entire outfit around this stupid color - complete with the colored shoes and matching handbag - because I'm a stupid idiot who likes to appear "up" on the trends.

I think this idea is so cool and if I 1) Had the money and 2) didn't move every couple of years I would so buy a franchise myself. I think the concept is wonderful - a place to meet your gal pals and chat over chocolate without looking over your shoulder to see whose watching you eat a pound of chocolate.

Anyone live in Chicago? The chocolate lounge I read about was called "Ethel's Chocolate Lounge" in Lincoln Park. They have 50 (fifty!!) types of gourmet chcolate as well as menu offerings such as "Truffles and Tea for Two" where you get a sample of 11 truffle varieties and tea - what fun! And, the South Bend Chocolate Co. also has chocolate cafes in Ohio, Indiana and Michigan. I live in Columbus but believe me, if there was a chocolate cafe within a 100 mile radius, I'd know about it.

Has anyone heard of these places?? If I go to my local chocolate store (Anthony Thomas) which produces delicious homemade chocolates, and buy a pound (or more) and eat it today for breakfast, lunch and dinner but don't eat anything else, would that be bad? Because wouldn't the amount of calories add up to about what I'd eat during the day anyway...

That reminds me of a very funny although quite humilitating story that happened last year at Anthony Thomas just after Valentine's Day. Any guesses? I'll save it for another post.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Revenge of the Rats

Ever think rats might have a bit of a grudge against us humans?

Oh, just bear with me for a minute. I was reading yet another newspaper article this morning about yet another experiment featuring rats being forced to do something. This particular one involved mazes and, of course, the ever present electric shocks to get the little suckers to do something or other.

Anyhoo, I think we should start to worry a little bit about rats plotting some sort of revenge against us for all the torturing of them we do. Now, I'm not saying that a lot of it isn't for a good cause. I sure hope lives have been saved due to the endless experiments scientists perform on them. I'm just thinking they have to be a little, uh, mad at this point. I mean, they can't be that dumb if they're the ones always used for tests.

In fact, this is all sounding a little familiar now that I've written it out...I'm thinking there was some book I read as a teenager - The Rats of NIMH? Something like that...am I crazy or does anyone else remember this book where rats became super smart??

Yea well, you knew I was a little kooky, this post just confirms it. :)

Monday, February 20, 2006

The Olympic Spirit Still Lives

Has anyone been watching the Olympics? I have, I've always loved the Olympics and it makes me so proud of our country to have all of these talented athletes. Although I'm trying to figure out if some are too "big for their britches" or is it just the media portraying them that way?

For example, you have Linsay Jacobellis who was set for the Gold Medal in Snowboard Cross racing and then had to show off by "styling" (grabbing her board), causing her to fall and finish second. And then there is all this hype about Bode Miller who has his own private RV away from all of his teammates and other athletes. He sure hasn't lived up to all the press he's gotten - not one medal - and he has the nerve to say, "At least now I don't have to go all the way to Turin" (for the medals ceremony). And let's not forget Shani Miller's win as the first African American to win a Gold medal at the games (Speedskating) which was totally overshadowed by his refusal to join his teammates in a relay race because he wanted to "save himself" for his individual event. Some media have begin calling the games the "Me Olympics" which, sadly enough, seems to fit.

Despite all the negative stories about the "stuck up" Americans I still like to watch the ice dancing and ice skating with their totally ridiculous, over the top, campy outfits. And I loved the snowboard half pipe event although I couldn't understand every other word the announcer said, e.g., "stoked, backside air, goofy feet, amplitude, front side 980 with a grab, etc.!"

I did read an absolutely wonderful story this morning that made me believe there are still people out there who believe showing kindness is still important.

Cross Country skiier Sara Renner was well on her way to helping her team (Canada) win a medal in the team sprint event. She was in second place when all of the sudden her ski pole broke. Since it was a sprint, they were on flat land - no hills to help - so she was pretty much stuck just watching other skiiers pass her as she couldn't keep up with only one pole. Then, out of nowhere, a man runs up and hands her a pole. She's able to make up a lot of time and hand off to her teammate and Canada ended up winning the silver medal.

The amazing thing about this story is that the man who handed Sara the ski pole was the coach for the Norwegian team! And by giving Sara the pole her team was able to finish second - instead of much farther back - which knocked Norway out of the medals altogether because they finished fourth.

Now, you would think this might result in some hard feelings from Norwegians to Canadians, especially since cross country skiing is the national sport of Norway. The Norwegian coach, Bjoernar Hakensmoen, says no one has said anything bad to him for helping Sara out and the Canadians have sent him "thank you" emails and flowers, Sara gave him a bottle of wine and the head of the Canadian Olympic Committee sent a letter of appreciation.

Hakensmoen said, "The equipment shouldn't determine the winner. The heart and talent should determine the winner. If you win, but don't help somebody when you should have, what kind of win is that?" Indeed!

Friday, February 17, 2006

I'd Like a Smaller Ass Please

Oh, this is so cool! Check out this website to see a celebrity photo that has been retouched. It shows you the "before" and "after" and a list of body parts that have been retouched. You can click on each body part and it will show you exactly what was changed and how. Every teenage girl should look at this site. It would probably prevent A LOT of eating disorders and prove that no one can possibly look as good as celebrities are made to look by copious amounts of photo retouching.

Click on the "Retouch" link at the bottom of the web page and then wait for the "loading" message to finish (10 seconds max). You will be so amazed!

And if you want to see actual befores & afters of models you regulary see in magazines and catalogs, check this out - just roll your cursor over the "afters" to see the unretouched version. Pay special attention to the breast enhancements, waist thinning and butt lifts!

It's just so sad this happens. I feel like teenage girls don't even have a chance. They're bombarded with this crap for years and years as they grow up. It has to be hard to develop a positive self image.

I'm BAAAAAAAAAAAAACK!

Oh wow, I cannot believe it's been over a week since I posted! How I've missed my blogger buddies. Please forgive me for my lack of diligence and don't desert me, a big mea culpa!

It's been one heck of a week. Husband and I flew to Annapolis, MD to visit some friends. He had to give a presentation there for work and I decided to tag along to catch up with friends we hadn't seen in a while. Had a great time - ate crabcakes until I grew claws with pinchers (all the better to pinch Hubby with, hee hee). We lived in between Baltimore and D.C. for several years and have really missed the great seafood. Every place we move to we stupidly try and order "Maryland Crabcakes" at nice restaurants and are ALWAYS disappointed...when will we learn?! There are no good crabcakes outside of MD! I dare you to disagree. Seriously, if you've had better let me know so I can come to your state to try them out.

Anyway, after that I have been plagued by god awful migraines. We've had some very weird weather here in the Midwest - 64 degrees one day and 25 the next. It has been causing havoc in my head...I had one doctor stumped and the second one has diagnosed me with an "aberrant" (don't you love that word) form of a migraine. It's kind of scary - not to mention gross - to throw up in the kitchen sink 'cause you can't make it to the toilet. OK, that was probably an overshare - sorry. But, I got some "magic" pills that are making it all better.

More later...I've missed you all so much! And thanks so much to Gradual Gardener and kimmy and jacob for asking where I was.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Hassle Me!

Here's something original - how about hassling YOURSELF to do something? There's this cool website, www.hassleme.co.uk, that allows you to send yourself emails "hassling" you to do something.

The thing I like about it is that the "hassling emails" are sent pretty randomly. It's not for business, like setting an Outlook reminder to tell you to go to your 10 o'clock meeting. Instead, you can set it up to be hassled every "x" days to stick to your diet or go to the gym or call your mother or finish painting the dining room or do something nice and unexpected for your spouse.

It's like nagging yourself! Definitely better than someone else nagging you. :) Although, you could enter someone else's email address and send THEM hassling emails...

Monday, February 06, 2006

Pet Peeve #246

HER: So, how are you today? A little cold out there, huh?
ME: uuh, ah
HER: So, what have you been doing today?
ME: uh, nuffink
HER: So, do you have kids?
ME: uh uh
HER: Really? Well why not?
ME: Because we don't want them to have to talk to nosy bitches like you!

OK, I didn't really say that but I admit to thinking it so hard my eyes got buggy and that vein in my temple started throbbing a warning: cease and desist with the personal questions or I will kill you.

Seriously, this is how the conversation went this morning with a dental hygienist that I had never met before. That's right, never met her yet she feels it's appropriate to ask me intimate questions like why I don't have kids while her hands are in my mouth. HOW RUDE. Although I should be used to it because it happens ALL the time. I really can't figure out why total strangers think they have the right to ask such personal questions. What if, God forbid, I'd had a miscarriage. Sometimes I want to make up some truly horrible story just to try and shock these idiots into realizing how inappropriate their kid interrogation is.

I wish I could be rude back and say that's it's "none of their business", "not something I discuss" or "f&^% off" but hey, I am a nice person most of the time. I usually mumble something like, "oh, hasn't happened yet" (not gonna be able to get away with that too many years longer) or "don't know" but they never get the message. The shorter my answer the more persistent they are in questioning me, like this is supposed to be normal casual chit chat.

Besides The Floss Nazi (after the kid questions we moved on to a FIFTEEN MINUTE diatribe about flossing daily), I have gotten The Question from everyone from neighbors I just met, to telemarketers, to bank tellers, to cashiers, etc. I have no problem with someone asking if I have kids, but when I say "no", why must they feel they are owed an explanation as to why not??

Anyway, throughout 2006 I'll be writing about my other 245 pet peeves. wheeeeeee

Sunday, February 05, 2006

I Hate Blogger

This will be very short since Blogger has "lost" my last THREE posts.

Really, all I want to say today is how much I HATE BLOGGER. Blogger SUCKS. OK, starting to feel a little better.

I tried to post several times on Friday and Saturday and finally gave up. Had such great things to say too, such as Sampson threw up at 3:00am Thursday morning and 4:00am Friday morning. The posts were quite saucy if I do say so myself due to my extreme sleep deprivation. But no, Blogger just had to f&^% with me! Oh, btw, Sampson is just fine. Just needed to throw up on the carpet and then was happy to get back in his bed. He was snoring by the time I was running back up the stairs with the paper towels, wet rags and totally ineffective carpet cleaner. Seriously, does anyone know of a carpet cleaner that actually works on pet throw up?! 'Cause Woolite's oxyclean does NOT. And since Husband is merrily golfing away in Orlando he cannot operate our steam cleaner (one of our most valuable and smart purchases EVER).

The only other thing I have to say, GO STEELERS!! Or, if you're from the 'burg, GO STILLERS!!

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Thirteen Smokin' Guys

Thirteen Smokin' Guys
I'm sure I'm missing many so feel free to add the ones you think I missed in Comments. But, I refuse to add Brad Pitt - yea, I know he's hot but he still left his wife for skanky ho Angelina so he's not getting on the list. Oh, and forget Tom Cruise as I've decided he's a big idiot - I hope Katie Holmes gets postpartum depression and her dr. insists she go on medication.
  1. Sean Connery - come on, the man's still got it
  2. Warrick (Gary Dourdan) from CSI - man's h-o-t with those green eyes.
  3. Patrick Dempsey who plays Dr. McDreamy in Grey's Anatomy
  4. Jake Gyllenhaal
  5. George Clooney
  6. Johnny Depp
  7. Matthew Fox currently starring in Lost but I remember him from Party of Five
  8. Michael Vartan from Alias
  9. Matthew McConaughey
  10. James Denton plays hunky plumber Mike on Desperate Housewives
  11. Bradley Cooper of the now defunct "Kitchen Confidential", previously of Alias
  12. Wentworth Miller of Prison Break, previously of Joan of Arcadia
  13. Dermot Mulrooney was just in The Family Stone with SJP