Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Who needs Google with readers like you!

I made what I thought was going to be a rhetorical question about 'catsup' and 'ketchup' and I got several replies telling me of the origins of both the words and the product. Can I send you Alexa's homework questions? I could really use the help sometimes.

I've been a bad, bad blogger, not checking in, no posting, but I have been busy. Let me go back a bit. First, we had a wonderful weekend in Cleveland - as we do every year.
As you can see, Norm has his Browns gear on, I've got my Browns gear on...Alexa - that's another story. She's willing to wear Browns gear as long as it "doesn't have 'Cleveland', 'Browns', or 'football' written on it anywhere OR as long as it's NOT orange or brown. That kinda cuts down on the options.
They were celebrating Veterans Day at the stadium so they did a really nice pre-game show with members of all of the armed forces and a fabulous fly-over that was timed perfectly with the end of the Star Spangled Banner. It was very, very special.
On the home front. I've been working a lot at the store as Dimitra is still in Greece. First, we had Stamp Camp, then breaking down Halloween and setting up for Christmas and in between we started a 25 Days of Christmas tag swap. We have 25 people signed up, everyone picks a number from 1-25 and we are all creating a tag - and 25 copies! We'll use a Bind-it-All to attach them all together and each one of us will have a complete set. It's a lot of work and I've got to get them finished tonight! I'll post a picture once we've exchanged tags (don't want to let my 'design' out of the bag!)
I also did a class project based on mirrored frame that Karen Lockhart sent us after she did a class at the store. I love her stamps and decided to recreate it with a few changes. I didn't have anyone for the class, but I did have 3 people sign up for a class kit. It took a day to put it all together along with instructions. Here is what the final project looked like.
Lastly, Happy Thanksgiving to everyone out there. I'm ditching my cooking responsibilities and we're going out to dinner on Thursday. With the four of us, it's sooooo... much easier. No tackling the Black Friday shopping crowds either. I'm almost done shopping and there's nothing I need to brave gridlock for. So if I'm a good girl, I'll get a tree up and or do Christmas cards for the first time in three years - and no, I didn't make them - let's be serious here. I'll be back soon and I hope you all have a wonderful holiday weekend and as my friend Marty recently drummed into my brain - Isn't it ironic that the only thing a turkey can say is "Gobble, Gobble"? (it took me a day to get that one!)

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Catsup or Ketchup - Whatever!

Just a short post to let you know I'm still here. I was supposed to join the ladies, my Sweatshoppe girlies for a weekend of relaxation and scrapbooking but as they say, life happens when you're making other plans. Norm had to fly off to China for 10 days and Alexa needs her 24/7 chauffeur. I'll fill you all in later on Cleveland, China, Halloween and what's new but I've got to hustle for work.

P.S. - why would anyone name a tomato puree "Catsup"? What's that about anyway?
P.S.S. - is ketchup any better?

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Yes We Can!

This past weekend we made our yearly trip to Cleveland to see the Browns. We got the Browns and then some. Senator Obama had a huge rally scheduled right outside our hotel, between the hotel and the Browns Stadium. What made it even better was Bruce Springsteen was his opener! We went to the game, (Browns lost, bummer) and then we joined the 80-100,000 waiting for Springsteen and Obama. The crowd was very large and very diverse. Young, old, middle aged, white, black, every combination you could imagine. We couldn't see the stage but they had big screens set up and we could see Springsteen on them. He was great! After he finished, he introduced Obama and the cry of "Yes we can!" sprang up in the crowd.

Obama was eloquent, focused, confident and respectful. Alexa has been asking a lot of questions about the election and we've both been trying to explain the process and the candidates without overly influencing her to think our way. It's been difficult. For Alexa it comes down to who is 'good' and who is 'bad'. She's very black and white, no pun intended. Getting her to see shades of gray and learning that in many cases there are no absolutes is a challenge. So I've told her it comes down to respecting both these men for what they have done, who they are and what they want to do, and how they want to lead our nation. I've been very careful to try and get across to her that while I truly do respect John McCain and even like him - he's a hero for the sacrifices he made for our country during the Vietnam war and for the years of service he's given Arizona and our country in the Senate, that I don't always agree with all of his decisions or how he wants to institute change. I'm more comfortable and in sync with Senator Obama.

Alexa stayed up as late as she could manage, watching election results! Who knew?! She also told me what all her friend's parents were saying, who they were going to vote for, who her teachers where going to vote for! (Heaven only knows what Alexa tells her friends about us! I shudder to think about it!) Even this morning she was trying to figure out if McCain could still win because there were states that were still undecided!
Writing this post has been difficult for me. I do not like to air my political views in public. I'm very old school. What's that adage, 'Never talk about politics or religion" - well that's me. This year has been different. This election has been different. So I'm coming out of my political closet.

In the end, I was moved to tears by president-elect Obama's speech last night. I was touched and moved by Senator McCain's speech also. Both gave me hope that change can happen. That we can work together in the best interest of all Americans and not just of those who think like we do. I'd never seen crowds of people spontaneously pop up on election night all over the country the way they did in New York, Chicago, Washington, DC, cheering and joining together the way Americans did last night. It made me very proud of both candidates, and of our country, and the promise of a better America. It made me proud to be an American.