Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Parasailing

One of the fun activities we did on vacation week was parasailing. Mom refused to go, so I risked life and limb to go with Kayla.

I exaggerate. If you've never been parasailing, you should at least try it one time. It's not necessarily something you'd want to do over and over again, but it is very relaxing. Not at all scary. Plus you get to sound cool when you say "yeah, I've done that."



Kayla was cool as a cucumber. I had been parasailing a couple years ago with Jim. See, didn't that make me sound ultra cool? Anyway, I had done it but this was her first time. No fear.

Why do I keep saying cool? Who says cool anymore?

Anyway, I must admit I'm a little embarrassed showing you these pictures. To say that I need a tan is a gross understatement.

My legs are so white they actually cast a glare in this next photo.



If I weren't so ashamed, it might be a little funny. Honestly, those are my legs.

I'll show you a closer shot, but be warned. I will not be held responsible for damage done to your retina.

View at your own risk.



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Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Liesl and Kayla



Liesl and Kayla became fast frenemies over the last week. If you're a gossip hound, you understand frenemy. If you aren't, allow me to explain. Frenemies are people who are kind of like friends, kind of like enemies.

Since Liesl is a 3 month old Social Failure, she has a lot of frenemies right now.

There were some high points.....



....and some low ones.

Kayla spent a lot of time dodging bites from Miss Mouth.



The biggest obstacle Kayla suffered was Liesl's fetish for toes. All her manners go out the window when she sees toes. OK, you're right. She doesn't have manners, but she really does love toes. I refuse to go outside in flip flops anymore.





By the end of the week, I believe they were really quite taken with each other.



Just look at the admiration in her eyes.



Actually, this was a split second before she bit Kayla. Social Failure.

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Monday, July 27, 2009

It's Hard To Say Goodbye

Geez Louise, that took forever!

I finally have my trusty laptop back and I have so much to share with you!

I was on vacation all of last week. My Mom and my niece Kayla flew in from Missouri to spend the week with us. We had such a good time. For the next several days I will share pictures and stories of our adventures.

I was so very sad when they left yesterday.



When you're expecting company it seems like it takes forever for that time to get here. Then once they're here, time vanishes like a fart in the wind (sorry, that's from a movie).

After we dropped them off at the airport, I cried. I'm not normally a cryer, but my estrogen level had skyrocketed to a new high this week. Must have been because of the extra female hormones in my home for 7 days. Whatever it was, I cried.

When we got home I found a note from Kayla and I cried. Then I found a note from my Mom, and I cried. I was OK for a little bit, then I drank a cup of coffee and cried.



Today was our first day back to normal. Back to the grind.

I'm looking forward to reliving our week together. I really miss you guys.




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Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Code Red Panic



The most horrible thing has happened. My trusty sidekick and constant companion has had a meltdown.

I could see her cracking under the pressure, then yesterday she just fell apart. Now I am being forced to send her in for evaluation.

One week apart. One terribly long week apart.

What am I to do? Who will update me on the latest developments in the Michael Jackson death? Who will tell me why Jessica Simpson and Tony Romo really broke up? How will I keep up with my favorite blogs? Who will take care of my Mafia? How will my nosey disposition be fulfilled?

The horror of it all!

The only thing keeping me from going totally over the edge is that tonight is my last trip away from home for a while. Spending time alone without my trusty vessel of endless information would be just unbearable! Unbearable I say!



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Saturday, July 11, 2009

Shoes From Hell



These shoes are of the Devil.

Against my better judgement, I wore these shoes on a two day trip. I took no other shoes. No alternate, in-case-of-emergency shoes.

Remember those horrible pictures of women in China, or was it Japan, that bound their feet to the point of deformity for the sake of vanity and fashion? As sad as that is, it's even sadder that I'm stupid enough to go down the same path.

One more day and my feet would have looked like this lady's.



I am a very picky shoe person normally. I have very high standards when it comes to shoes. Then once I find a pair I like, I wear them until their ultimate demise. Sometimes beyond.

Take this gray shoe, for instance. I bought this shoe maybe 3 years ago. It is a very comfortable shoe, and very rare. Finding a gray dress shoe is like finding a leprechan. They are super elusive.



This shoe is sadly near it's end. While the top is still in good condition. I have worn the heel down to a stub.



Yes, that is a nail. It makes a scratchy sound on hard surfaces and is slippery on tile, but I can't stand to part with my gray shoes just yet.

And then there's my favorites. My high heeled wing tips. I've received a lot of compliments on these old friends. Again, the tops look okay, a little scratched, but nothing some shoe polish couldn't fix.



Now let's take a look at the flip side. I can only wear these shoes when it's not raining, otherwise water gets inside through the gaping hole where the sole used to be.



Why don't I buy new shoes you ask? Number one, I hate shopping. Number two, I am ridiculously picky. I only want shoes that scream "me" and I am very complicated.

If this were a fair and just world, I would be able to wear Jim's slippers everywhere I had to go.




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Monday, July 6, 2009

Off the Beaten Path

I am so jealous of these people.



Last week we spent 4 days in Montana. We happened to drive home on July 4th. There were more rafters in Montana than there were trees in the forest.

Look how much fun they're having. This was right before one of them fell out and hit their head on a rock.



I just made that up. Because I'm jealous.

Anyway, while driving home we detoured onto a randomly selected road and ended up at some historical place called Triple Bridges. This was a curious name because there were only 2 bridges there. Actually one bridge and one train trestle.

We climbed up the hill (even though I was still in full work ensemble) to see the tracks. It seemed like a good photo opportunity so I started snapping away.



The bridge was really old (no Mom, it isn't in use anymore) so I had to be really careful. I'm incredibly accident prone. If anyone could find that one rotten board, it would be me.



I was concentrating so hard on not falling through the enormous gaps that I didn't notice Jim wander off. I called for him a couple of times but got no response. Like any good wife I yelled louder and longer in that sing-songy way that wives are good at.

"Jiiiiiiiii-iiiiiiiiiiiiiimmmmmmmm!"
No response but I heard some rustling behind me. I assumed it was Jim so you can imagine my surprise when I turned around to discover some big sweaty guy with no shirt on.
You should have seen me go down that hill with dress shoes on.
It was OK, he was actually a hiker and his girlfriend was behind him. I just didn't see her at first. Then Jim reappeared and we headed back to the interstate.
Sometimes I think he hides from me just to see what I'll do.


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Sunday, July 5, 2009

Bananas Foster



Ingredients:
1/4 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp vanilla or rum extract
1/4 cup hot water
4 bananas

Over low heat combine butter, sugar and cinnamon. Stir frequently until the sugar dissolves. This takes quite a while but don't be tempted to crank the heat.

Once the sugar mixture starts bubbling, add the hot water and the flavor extract.



Cut the bananas in half, then again lengthwise. Add the bananas, cut side down in the pan. Shimmy the pan every couple minutes to cover the bananas and to prevent burning.

Cook until the bananas are softened and have a sugary crust on the bottom.



Serve the bananas with a little of the sauce over the ice cream.




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Saturday, July 4, 2009

Memories of a Hillbilly Fourth



The following story is true. The names have not been changed to protect anyone because I think it's funny to humiliate them.

Several years ago my brothers, Jeff and Phillip, and a group of other friends and family members (all of the male gender) decided to make a homemade "firecracker" (between you and me it was a black powder pipe bomb).

I believe it was Jeff that made the actual "firecracker".

In an attempt at being "safe" someone decided to use a line of black powder to light the wick so they wouldn't have to stand close to the "firecracker".

Jim (who was very new to hillbilly shenanigans at that time) suggested they test the black powder line first.

They laid down a separate line and our friend Brian was naive enough to light it.

What happened next is 4th of July legend in the Ozarks.

In less than an instant there was a massive flash of light. From a distance, those of us at the house heard a loud and clear "FUUUUUUUUUUUUUDGE!" Only (in the word's of Ralphie) he said THE word, the big one, the queen-mother of dirty words, the "F-dash-dash-dash" word.

It echoed throughout the hills and hollers of the Ozark Mountains. "Fu, Fu, Fu, Fu....."
Not certain if he was on fire or not, Brian did a precision stop-drop-and-role.

Although he was not technically on fire, Brian did suffer from burned hair and eyebrows. Luckily, Lasik eye surgery was not affordable back then, so Brian was still sporting glasses which probably saved him from a life of blindness.

The boys went on to set off the "firecracker" using a slow burning cigarette as the wick. It went off some 20 minutes after they lit it, waaaaaaaaaaay out in the field.

And to make up for his near death experience Brian got a free haircut and eyebrow trim from my mom out of the deal. We felt it was a fair trade. Brian doesn't really hang out with my family anymore. Hmmm.


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PS. The picture has absolutely nothing to do with this story, but it's my only July 4th picture, I like it, and it's my blog, so deal with it.