Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Why Do I Always Wait Until The Last Minute?

Because that's the way I am .....

The other evening when I got home, I had a message from a vampire !!

No, really I did!

I swear !!

He was asking for my blood.

So, on my way home from a long day at work, I stopped at a local middle school that was holding a blood drive. I couldn't disappoint the vampire two days before Halloween. Really, I couldn't ... so many people are in need.

(Added - just because - in all my years of donating blood, I have never witnessed a donor pass out. Last night - I did !! Just before the technician started to remove the needle, he kind of slumped to the side and went out cold. T.M.I probably but I just felt like sharing. He was fine after a little bit and sat at the table with me eating cookies - Famous Amos cookies at that!)

Back to business ...

This is what I got (in addition to the cookies - can you tell that I like those cookies ?)

After I finished eating my cookies and sipping on a Diet Coke, I headed home but had to make a pit stop at the K Mart to use the coupon (for a free bag of candy) that I had recieved from a fabulous blogger friend. While there, I noticed that all of the costumes were 50 % off, so I had to take a peek. It was a total mess but I noticed a vampire cape (cheap) and a light bulb went off in my head ! Guess what I am wearing to work on October 31st? My new fancy smancy t-shirt and a vampire cape (it's a child's size - but who cares?). It was cheap and a longer one would just get in the way while I slave away at work (shouldn't we have the day off ? It's a holiday for Pete's sake! ) And ... now I wish I hadn't put those blood capsules in one of the BOO bags that I secretly distributed last week.

I finally make it home and instead of fixing myself a proper dinner, I made 3 batches of brownies and posted for Fun Monday.

So, tonight, again instead of fixing myself a proper dinner, I iced those brownies that I mention above. They aren't just brownies - they are ghost brownies !!

See ...

No - I am not giving them out for Halloween (you just can't do that in this day and age unless you are having a party and I'M NOT.) They are going to work with me - to get brownie points with my co-workers !! (go ahead and groan - bad attempt of a joke!). The workplace is having a bake sale (to help fund the holiday party in December) and half of them will go to that and the rest will hopefully be enjoyed by my co-workers.

Right now - this is how I feel ...

because the sink is full of dirty dishes and my house is a mess and it's getting late and ... I am sitting in front of this contraption posting a post instead of doing what I should be doing - it's a vicious cycle but what the hell !! I blame it on my sister - it's her fault !! (I seem to be doing that a lot lately, but I have no regrets.)

What is Halloween without Jack-O-Lanterns?

I have no children at home and it's no fun carving a pumpkin all by yourself. So, I drove up to the Shenandoah Valley on Sunday to visit my brother and his family figuring that his granddaughters (my great nieces) would have Jack-O-Lanterns and I wasn't disappointed !!

They are growing up so fast ... their "Oma" (my sister-in-law) carved them and this was the first time they had seen them lit up. They were so excited ...

Can you tell ?

(For the out of town family members - "K" is on the left and "Z" is on the right - I think ! They have on jackets so I can't see what they are wearing and that is how I tell them apart. )

My friend and I would like to wish you and yours a safe and Happy Halloween.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Fun Monday #16 - Don't Leave Home Without It

Many thanks to Karina at Candid Karina for being this week's Fun Monday hostess. The assignment for this week is:

"I want to see your security blankets. No, not the kind Linus carries around with him in the Charlie Brown cartoons, although, if you have one of those, by all means share it. What I want to see are the items you just cannot leave home without. What is it that if you leave your house without, you feel naked, incomplete, not quite right? This can be one thing or many things. And since most of us don't live in a clothing optional society, lets just assume we all leave the house fully dressed...I want to hear about those other things...the extras. The things that make women's purses so heavy and men's pockets so messy (I'm going to get grief for this one, aren't I?) What can't you leave home without? Show us pictures, tell us stories...have fun!"
Whenever I leave the comfort of my home, even it is just to go next door ... I always take -

I am a firm believer that if one is always prepared, bad things will not come your way. I don't make many phone calls but someone can always get ahold of me if they need to. My parents live all the way across the United States now (instead of across the highway a few miles away) and if they need to call, I am available (which is a sense of security for me - they aren't getting any younger). If my boys need me - they know my number too!

(The phone is an antique model and I know that !! I have a $100 credit to get a newer model but never seem to find the time to get to the phone store !! Very sad indeed but hey! it still works!!)

Now that colder weather is setting in, I rarely leave home without my newest lifesaver (lipsaver) -all because of my sister - it's all her fault !!

If you haven't tried Chicken Poop, you don't know what you are missing !! It's better than any chapstick (or comparable product) that I have ever used before.

Take a few moments and go visit Karina to see what others can't leave home without.

Friday, October 26, 2007

The Last of Six

On this day, 32 years ago, you were born!

Happy Birthday, Little SIS

Have a wonderful day !!


Wednesday, October 24, 2007

I Got BOO'ed

The other evening when I got home, this was sitting outside my door!

The air is cool, the season fall,
Soon Halloween will come to all.

The spooks are after things to do
In fact, a spook brought this to you.

"BOO" is a shield from witching hour,
Just hang it up and watch its power.

On the front door is where it works,
It wards off spooks and scary jerks.

The treats that came with this cryptic note,
Are yours to keep so enjoy them both.

The power comes when friends like you,
Will copy this and make it TWO.

The others here among our friends,
Will give warm fuzzies that will not end.

We'll all have smiles upon our face,
No one will know who "BOO'ed whose place.

You must work your spell in one short day,
So get to work, don't stop to play,

And don't forget a nifty treat,
Like something cute or something sweet.

Please join the fun, let's really hear it,
And spread some "BOOs" and Halloween Spirit!


1. Enjoy your treat!
2. Place your "BOO" on your front door.
3. Now you have 24 hours to copy this twice, make 2 treats and 2 "BOOs"
and secretly deliver to 2 neighbors who do not have a "BOO" on their
front door.
4. Then watch how far this spreads by Halloween!!!

Here's my treats and sweets ...

So ... I did as I was told and hung my "BOO" on my front door ...

Then I made up two bags to secretly give away ...

My neighbor and I both know who BOO'ed each other - we did !! She has BOO'ed me each year since that Halloween a few years ago when I started it (I got BOO'ed at work) - she didn't know who it was until way after Thanksgiving !! It's the jump start to get it going again each year.

One of my bags went to a co-worker who just moved into my neighborhood (on a different street). I snuck over to her place one evening and hung it on her door (luckily she wasn't home at the time). She has mentioned it to me in conversation but has NO IDEA who left it for her - MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!

The other bag went to another co-worker and she too has mentioned it to me and even has showed me the bag and it's contents, but has NO IDEA who left it for her - MISSION ACCOMPLISHED again. I left it on her desk that same evening because I had to work late and she wasn't at her desk when I left.

I'll fess up once Halloween has passed. They both told me that they had made up and delivered "BOO" bags to unsuspecting neighbors.

That's what this is all about.

Both of them were excited about it and pleased to recieve them. I like to know that I put a smile on someone's face ...

If I knew where all of you lived ... I'd spread the love and BOO YOU TOO !!

Monday, October 22, 2007

Fun Monday # 15 - Clothing Art

Willowtree at "A Dingo's got my Barbie" is the host this week and a great host he has been!

He wants to see some clothing art. That's tee shirts, baseball caps, hoodies, sports uniforms or any bit of clothing that you or your kids own that has interesting, funny or artistic graphics.


Here is a small sampling:

Some shirts from my younger days ...

Cathy ... Remember her?

Can't remember the name of this guy ...

Brew Thru - Outer Banks, NC

Big Dog - I was a BIG hockey fan back then !


the front view

the back view

THE WARTHOG (from Britches, I think!)

the front view

the back view

AND NOW some of my more current ones ...

From some of my travels
(Cockspur is a brand of Rum from Barbados)

Crabby Mike's Resturaunt in SC
Red Cross T-Shirts

Some of my favorites !!

(especially the one from Old Navy!)

Volunteer / Race / Walk T-Shirts

These show where my blood lines are ...

Ones that I wear at the present ...

This is who I am and damn proud of it !!

My most prized t-shirt is missing ....

I searched high and low for it ...

It must be packed away somewhere ...

Bruce Springsteen T-Shirt

from his "Born in the USA" tour

when he performed in Washington, DC

YES, I am that old !!

This was fun ... make sure you find your way over to visit Willowtree and check out everyone else's clothing art !!

Saturday, October 13, 2007

A Wonderful Day in the Neighborhood

Since I live in Northern Virginia - Washington, DC is in the neighborhood !

And why was it a wonderful day?


CPA Mom (and HP and Tigger and Eeyore too) came to Washington, DC !

They came to my neighborhood and we all went to the National Zoo.

The weather was absolutely delightful, although just a tad bit chilly in the morning ...

But that didn't stop us from checking out all the National Zoo has to offer!

We saw -

and A BEAR Yes, just one bear ( a sloth bear at that, it must be too warm in this neighborhood for the grizzlies and the polar bears) ... unless you count these too!

This stubborn Panda Bear just wouldn't let us see it's best side ... like it did back in May of 2006 when SJ was in town !

LB - we (me, you and the little one) will have to make the journey back up to the zoo when you are feeling better and maybe then, the Pandas will be feeling a bit more photogenic!

And what do we have here? Just what were they looking at?


I think it is one of my long lost relatives !! I have often wondered where he was and what he was doing ! I think that he might be in the Hidden Identity Program because you can't see him very well!

(I have never claimed to be a great photographer - Sorry - do I get an "A" for effort?)

Isn't this guy a real cutie? Imagine ... a meercat posed for me? Maybe it's because they have their own TV show ...

There were elephants to see ...

and a zebra ...

and even some flamingos ...
But, I totally wasn't quick enough "to capture on film" the one that was running around and fell flat on his face! It was rather comical ... No injuries to the bird though - it got right back up and kept on running.

But most important ... there were waterfalls too!

Aren't they adorable?

I think this waterfall may have been Tigger's most memorable moment of the day.

It truly was a Wonderful Day in the Neighborhood. I had a great time and hope that they did too. We said our goodbyes - CPA Mom and company headed back to their hotel and I hopped onto the Metro (subway) towards Springfield to retrieve my car and head home.

I got to see my BLOGGING friend and her family once again which was TOTALLY AWESOME. If anyone else is ever in the neighborhood, please let me know and we, too, could venture up to the Zoo !

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Color is Good !!

* Borrowed from an email I received yesterday ...

Yesterday I went to the doctor for my yearly physical.
My blood pressure was high, my cholesterol was high,
I'd gained some weight, and I didn't feel so hot.
My doctor said eating right doesn't have to be complicated and it would solve my physical problems.

He said just think in colors...
Fill your plate with bright colors...





I went right home and ate an entire bowl of :

And sure enough, I felt better immediately.

I never knew eating right could be so easy.

(I'm taking the easy way out tonight !!)

Two and a half hours to get home this evening !!


Monday, October 8, 2007

Fun Monday # 14 - An October View

I have taken a quick peek at a couple of Fun Mondays already which more than validated the fact that my view on any given morning IS NOT as nice as what a lot of you have. What can I say, I live in the suburbs of Washington, DC and it isn't very pretty !!

Many thanks to Pamela at the DUST WILL WAIT for being the hostess this week. She has a beautiful view any way you look at it. (I am so very jealous).

My dust always waits until the weekend because of all the construction in "my back yard". I would be dusting continuously and would never get ahead - everytime a door or window is opened - it finds it's way inside. So, I have given up and only dust on the weekend during my housecleaning and overlook it the rest of the time.

Her assignment is:

I want to see what you see on any given morning this week; from somewhere very near where you live. Front porch, back porch, down the street, around the corner. Just makes sure it's your neighborhood. Post a photo that will send me to the travel agent to book a weekend at your local Bed & Breakfast

When I moved into this townhouse community 6 years ago, I had a wonderful view of woods and the peace and quiet that goes along with it. I only saw and heard "nature" out my back door. NOT SO MUCH any more ! I hear traffic, sirens, trucks downshifting, the announcer at any sporting event taking place at the school on the other side of the highway, doors slamming, kids (and adults) yelling, dogs barking ... the list goes on. No more crickets chirping, no more birds singing, no more frogs croaking and no more sounds of the little stream that used to gurgle by back there.

This image from Google Earth was probably taken about the time they started clearing the land behind my house (left side of picture - mine is the first one (bottom) of the row). The road at the top of the image is Route 1. (The same highway that runs from Florida all the way up to Maine).

Now, when I look out the back door, I see very few trees, townhouses to the left, parking lots in the making (with more townhouses to come)to the right and Route 1 to the far right.

The beige colored blur in the background are the ends of townhouses that have just been built .

(OH.MY.GOODNESS !! I just clicked on the compose tab (which I had never done before) and just realized that I have been doing these posts the hard way all along and now I have so many options like colors, size, etc. etc - I always wondered how folks got their posts to look so pretty.

I am such a LOSER !!)

The view from the front door (on the side because it's an end unit with a porch) isn't much better.

More townhouses (although you can't really see them in these shots), parking spaces and not many trees!!

To the right:

AND to the left:

See the flower pot in the middle of the square of landscaping timbers (not the dead mums in the pots to the left - we're in a draught situation right now - give me a break! ) - it is nailed to the stump of the Bradford Pear that USED to be in the yard ... Hurricane Isabel graciously knocked it down! Along with a maple tree that was in the common area next to it!

AND the SUV that is parked diagonally across two spots ... it belongs to my wacko neighbor who gets really ticked off when someone parks in her extra spot !! She's a nurse that works at night - maybe the nighttime hours have affected her brain (and the crying babies probably don't help much - she is a neonatal nurse)! AND she bitches and moans constantly about all the noise from the construction during the day ... (no offense to anyone who may work the night shift) BUT all of us normal people work during the day !!

One more view from the basement door -

It was the most enjoyable view I had ... until the wildflowers all died - the fence hides all the construction crap ! Unfortunately, not the noise ...

Down the street - around the corner - on any day other than early Sunday morning (I procrastinated) or a holiday (which today was for most people, just not me) - you would see TRAFFIC. I am kinda glad I didn't get a picture because TRAFFIC here in Northern Virginia is UGLY.

REAL UGLY !! And with all the construction that is taking place, it ain't gettin any better.

I wouldn't recommend anyone to rush out and try to visit my neck of the woods (you would get stuck in traffic, for sure) but be sure to make the trip over to Pamela at THE DUST WILL WAIT and see what everyone else sees on any given morning in October.