Sunday, December 26, 2010

Merry Christmas - 2010

Here are my belated wishes for a Merry Christmas to everyone who stops by my blog. We had a really nice day and were joined by two Medaille students from China. Bella spent Thanksgiving with us this year and was able to join us for Christmas. She is a delightful young lady and we really enjoy spending time with her.
Here are Bella and Jon who joined us for the first time. Jon was very interested in Norm's book collection and ended up borrowing a number of books and DVD's. We had a combined Chinese and American meal. Ham for us traditionalists and some Chinese food (don't get excited, it was take-out) for Alexa, Jon and Bella.
I never get into my pictures so I thought I'd include these with me and the kids.
Both seemed to enjoy the tree and the decorations. Santa brought them both a gift and stockings. Jon loved Christmas Peeps! Alexa was happy with her Juicy charm bracelet and charm, Norm liked his customized Browns jersey, I was ecstatic over my Vagabond and 'Hip, Hip, Jorge!' t-shirt, but the winner this year was Joyce's hubcap for her 1996 Chevy Geo!

My day after was made even better by a win by the Patriots, unfortunately at the expense of the Bills, to secure a first round bye and home field advantage for the playoffs.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Scrambled Eggs...


I rarely watch Jimmy Fallon, but I couldn't resist when I saw the promos for the show a day or two ago. Fallon was all googly about having McCartney on the show. You could just see it in his eyes, he was like every 15 yr. old kid that got a ticket to a Beatles concert back in the 60's.

So check out this video of Sir Paul and Jimmy singing Scrambled Eggs - you'll recognize the tune as soon as they start. According to Paul this is how he remembered the melody to this song that we all know by another name.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Spa Thursday...

Not for me mind you, for Abby! Yes, my cocker spaniel gets a 'spa day' and I don't.

When Abby has to go to the groomer, we call it her spa day. She gets to go and hang out with other dogs, loves her groomer, er, stylist and comes home looking extra beautiful and sweet smelling!

Me, I get a dog free day! Now, I LOVE my puppy girl but I cannot go anywhere in the house without her dogging (pardon the pun) my heels. She follows me everywhere and if I sit down, she's in my lap. So today after I check my mail, news and blogs, I'm going down to the basement to do laundry and work on my stamp/scrap cabinet that needs to be stained and finished. It's raining and miserable out so today is the perfect day.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Two for Tuesday...

Well, so much for posting everyday. This week I thought I'd start on Tuesday and see what happens.

1. This is one of my new viewing pleasures. I love 'American Pickers' and I'm starting to get into 'Pawn Stars'. A new show started tonight, 'American Restoration'. I'm REALLLY looking forward to watching this.

2. My next guilty pleasure is tied this web site. Several of the girls at work are really into going to estate sales, flea markets and antique stores. If you've ever been in Buffalo Stamps and Stuff you know Sharon loves old cameras and antique items. They are all over the store and they are a wonderful background for all the stamps, papers, and supplies we sell.

Much to my daughter's dismay I've taken to going to the occasional estate sale. She thinks it's weird that I'd want anything that is old. Since I'm old it doesn't bother me at all!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Mixed Marriage...

Did you know Norm and I started out our marriage as a mixed marriage? Yes, he was a Yankee fan and I was a Met fan. It was enough to make our early years fraught with tension. To make matters worse, we lived in Boston, Massachusetts the home of the dreaded Red Sox.

I got my love of sports from my Mom. She'd watch anything and everything. My Dad, not so much Army vs. Navy was about it and not so much at that. Golf, tennis, ice skating, car racing, football and baseball. Remember the Pro Bowler's League on Saturday afternoons with Chris Schenkel? Watched it every weekend, ABC's Wide World of Sports - everything from cliff diving in Acapulco to curling in Canada. The only sports we didn't watch were hockey and basketball, but I knew about them!

Once I married Norm he and the Yankees slowly corroded my ability to follow the Mets. The only time I was able to keep true was the 1986 Mets. I had support from the guys at work. But I have to tell you, they almost killed me!

We moved to Kentucky in 1992 and it almost killed baseball for both of us. No Yankees or Mets in Louisville. No baseball in Louisville - at least no pro ball. We finally moved back to NY or baseball civilization as Norman would call it and all was well with his world. I have to admit I may be responsible for a portion of my current status as I bought Norm Saturday season tickets to the Yankees when we lived in New Jesey. That's how I came to know the Yankees and only the Yankees.

So today I have (in the words of a avowed Red Sox fan) turned to the 'dark side'. After 34 years of marriage I am a solid Yankee fan and have been typing this because I can't bear to watch tonight's game. We were doing OK then we lost Texiera and Texas scored like five runs! It's the old 'if I don't watch, they'll do good!" - I hope...

I do the same with football - now that's another story!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Monday Morning with Grover...

I've been terribly remiss in sending updates to my blog. So I thought I'd try something new. So far I'm going to try and do a "Monday Morning Message from ?" This can be anything! Words, Pearls, or whatever to start the week. I'm also thinking of borrowing shamelessly from Nora Griffin, "Tuesday's Ten", which will be ten to do's for me or for someone else - that could be interesting...

But today we start with my main man, Grover! Is this guy a stud or what! I think he does a way better job than that other wimpy guy on those Old Spice commercials...

With my tongue firmly planted in my cheek, happy Monday from me to you!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Better late than never...

I'm finally getting around to posting pictures of Alexa's first day of school. I know it's getting a little old as she is 13 now and going into 8th grade. But I think she expects it of me! She doesn't complain, she even poses for the pictures. As long as I don't take pictures when the bus actually arrives, I'm cool.
Dad hangs around for the first day too. Lucky too because he looks much better in the morning than I do! Please take note of the matching lunch bag and carry-all. All perfectly coordinated with her top and skirt. Lastly, her toes were polished (by moi) to match her nails and set off with white flip flops! Ahh, the first day of fashion, er school...

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Bad Romance...

I've got losts to post but I found this via my Facebook page from Sandy Parmenter and even though I'm not a fan of Lady Gaga, I'm lovin other people doing LG. I'm a 'Gleek' and I loved the version they did on 'Glee' and unlike the guys on the show, these guys have got it goin' on! Enjoy!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Another Sunday night...

It's another Sunday night and I'm watching the Emmys. If they could just eliminate the speeches, it would probably be a decent show. Case in point - Al Pacino - boring!!

ANYWAY...School is almost upon us. Alexa and I managed to do her school supply shopping without spilling any blood, tears or yanked out hair. Believe it or not, as Alexa gets older, the supply list gets shorter! (Except for the $100.00 calculator). I'm not looking forward to any clothes shopping, but luckily she has almost everything she needs for the fall semester, just a couple of pairs of new jeans and we'll be set until the end of October.

Our last challenge will be decorating Alexa's locker. Going into 8th grade (the last before high school!) Alexa still wants me to put up her locker paper and help her set up. This from a child who does not want me to set foot in her school under every other circumstance. We had to buy double sided wrapping paper, pink, of course and she mounted her schedule with pink and sparkle silver paper to be posted on the door. I figure this is the last year. I will gracefully retire from locker decoration at the end of this year and let Alexa do whatever decoration needs to be done in high school.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

What I did on my summer vacation...

It's been so long since I posted that I forgot my password! For most of the summer I was the supreme lurker. I've been looking at everyone else, everywhere else. I've been asked if I was OK? Yes. Have I been away?, No. Am I still alive?!? Definitely!
I know I posted much earlier this summer but I've been gone for a while and have just now managed to get some of my pictures downloaded to the computer. Bogspot hasn't been too helpful in letting me move picture so I've been working on this for several days, taking time off so I don't take a sledge hammer to the computer. is June, wonderful, creative, Tim's visit June!

One of the cool things we did was arrange personal shoppers for Tim's visit. Everyone got a paddle with a number on it at there placesetting. We had shopping bags to match each paddle up buy all the supplies Tim used in his classes.

Tim would show us something that he did and if you wanted the product you rasied your paddle and one of the salespeople would put that item in your corresponding basket! How cool is that! Some of those bags got very heavy...

We also had to have a picture with Tim with everyone who helped out so in the picture above going clockwise from the upper left hand corner is Laura, Mona, Elisabeth, Mark, Tim, Sharon Marty, Kaitlyn, Jamie, Debbie, Jessica, and me! Mario was our picture taker so he isn't in the shot :(

Here we are again on Sunday, me, Jamie, Mona, Dimitra, Sharon and Debbie. As you can see by the table set up, Tim was incredibly organized and he brough EVERYTHING YOU SEE ON THE TABLE WITH HIM!!

This is a sample of the Patchwork Pandemonium sample we had. (If you come to the store now there is a framed version done by Dimitra and framed by Debby on display behind the register).

This was one of our welcomes to Tim. Dimitra's vintage typewriter with a welcome note to Tim!

We had a fabulous weekend with Tim Holtz! Four classes, 90 women in each class! Tim was wonderful, a great teacher, funny, and as he says, he's just Tim! Here are some more photos:

Don't you just love the look on his face! Sharon felt a little empowered when she got to use the microphone. Below is a shot of everyone working and below that is a shot with Elisabeth who came all the way from New Jersey, and Debby right next to her. Me and Tim...and yes, I was a blithering idiot most of the time, incapable of a coherent sentence or thought. I hate small talk :(
JULY was another story. Long story short, I spent about four days in the hospital after having a hysterectomy. Not a way I would recommend spending the fourth of July holiday, but the fireworks show outside my window was pretty spectacular! I had only one little minor blip, which my OB/GYN fixed quickly and I was home.
I did pretty good at home I think as my DH told me last night that I "manned up" and didn't whine, complain, make excuses or anything during my recuperation. I guess I did good!
I think I'll do the rest of my saga on another post as I have a couple more things to add and it's still a good 2 plus weeks until school starts - Yeah!!!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Flip Side...

I ended up staying in the hospital for an extra day because of my BP and blood count going a little wonky. That's my doctor's story and it's working well for me. I was slightly ambivalent about coming home. In many ways the hospital was like a hotel with your own ladies maid.

Think about it, someone comes and checks on you every hour, offers you ice water, pillows, blankets and pain meds. Those came in really handy! They were really nice too. I've never been called 'Honey' so many times in my life.

Food - no cooking! Breakfast, lunch and dinner brought to you every day on a regular schedule! The tray was also taken away and there were no dishes to do!

Sleep - sleep all day long! (nuf said).

Now the Flip Side...

I felt AWFUL!! I had to have a blood transfusion, two uncomfortable CT scans (with the bumpiest trip to radiology I never want to take again!)

Even though ALL the nurses and nurses aides were extremely solicitous, understanding, compassionate and downright good at what they do (an extremely hard job) I had a new RN/NA every eight hours my entire stay! I don't think I saw the same RN/NA twice! Thank heaven that most of them wrote their names on the wipe board I stared at 24/7 and they had name badges.

They demanded answers to questions like, are you dizzy, nauseous, unsteady on your feet, can you walk, what is your name, how do you spell it and what is your birth date - every time they gave me an IV, pain med or took blood (and that happened way too much!)

Who could eat that food, really, come on. You know what I'm talking about. They brought me dinner after I'd been out of recovery for about an hour and I could barely open my mouth it was so dry and cottony. They gave me macaroni and cheese, hot coffee, other things I can't remember and I could not eat any of it, heck, I couldn't stand the smell! Nurse, ice water PLEASE!

Sleep, glorious sleep, ahhh...Yeah, right! I've been in elementary schools and ball games that are quieter than daytime on a hospital floor! Then when you do finally go to sleep, they try to sneak in and take your BP, temp, or are doing it for your roommate and just because she's awake doesn't mean you are!

Those beds! Hard mattresses, scratchy linen and blankets. Haven't they heard of sleep number, tempur-pedic, serta, anybody???

So you would you think that I'd be delighted to be home. Well, I am but...the dog has gotten out of the yard three times since I've been home and all times but one, DH has been off bike riding, walking, out with Lex anywhere but here to help. The one time someone was home it was Alexa and she stepped up to track Abby down.

Alexa barges in to the bedroom with no knocking, balks at doing anything to help unless she is in the mood. NO ONE CLOSES THE DOOR! Norm, Lex or the dog. The Dog, that's a whole nuther story! Abby has been off the wall since I've been home and since we've all been home. She has been a terror going after everything she can get her cute little teeth on and since getting up and down is the most taxing thing I can do, she has been running me ragged.

So with hubby's sometime benign neglect, daughter's denial, and puppy's pandemonium, I'm ready to check into a hotel! Anyone have the number for the local Marriott?!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Kinda Sorta...

I'm back home after my surgery and I feel - blah! I am very grateful for central air conditioning, our recliner and my daughter's friends who have kept her very busy since I went to the hospital. Outside of that, I'm done-in and content to sit here and veg. So that's what I think I'll do. stay cool everyone.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010


I'm going to be enjoying? a few days of R&R, rest and relaxation at the hospital before I have to come home for recovery from my "woman's surgery". Although, I know hospitals are notorious for being places where you can't get rest, I'm not sure coming home to dog, daughter and MIL will be very relaxing either. As it is, Norm is planning on stopping by for a quick hello, how are you, bye! on Friday afternoon and then going to the baseball game (Bisons) Friday night - such devotion! What can I say - wife, baseball, wife baseball...see the scale teetering towards...Baseball!!! Now, if only I was Derek Jeter...oh well, ta, ta, for now!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Gone are the days...

Gone are the days of getting together with your friends and talking about boys and rock bands...

Gone are the days of getting together with your friends and talking about fashion and jobs and boyfriends...

Gone are the days of getting together with your friends and talking about weddings, honeymoons, and sex (not necessarily in that order)...

Gone are the days of getting together with your friends and talking about should you get pregnant, OMG I'm NOT pregnant, OMG I'm pregnant, what do I do now that I'm pregnant, sex and sharing each other's horror story of labor and delivery...

Gone are the days of getting together with your friends and talking about your kids, ages birth to forever and sex (or lack thereof)...

Gone are the days of getting together with your friends and talking about your husband or SO, sex and your "friend"...

Welcome to the days of talking about your aches and pains, your thyroid and your gall bladder, your lasic surgery, sex and (GASP) Botox...

Yes, welcome to being our Moms and for some of us, our grandmother's.

Think about it, the last time you spent time with your girlfriends (no guys included), didn't you talk less about your kids and more about your health? Your talk included what meds and what food changes you've made in your life along with your new exercise regimen. Our bodies and what they are doing or NOT doing have taken the place of talking about other things such as books, movies, hairstyles and hot men.

Besides noticing these subtle changes creeping into my life I'm about to have one of those "woman" operations that definitively tell you that that time in your life is over - I'm having a hysterectomy in a week or so.

I'll save you the gory details and reasons. My bottom line is "the equipment never worked right in the first place so let's get rid of it!" (I'm also hoping they'll do some lipo suction on my tummy while they are there). I'm also hoping that giving rid of all this excess baggage will "Free Me", let me begin the best years of my life, let me come into myself, yada, yada, yada - just like Oprah says...

But right now, I'm just worried about not acting like a fool under anesthesia...and should I scrap this?

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

What a Weekend!...

You can take your Robert Redford, your Robert Pattison your Justin Beiber. We have Tim!

A week ago today Tim Holtz arrived in Buffalo for four Awesome , Wonderful, Creative, downright Fun workshops. Sharon has been jones'n this guy for our store for over two years. Thanks to her persistence, talent and generous nature we finally got a commitment to his coming to Buffalo Stamps and Stuff this year.

We started with thinking 50 students per class. We kicked that up to 75 and then we finally got the OK for 90 - How many do you think we got per class to sign up? 90 in the first three classes and 95 in the last class!

Beautiful, wonderful, talented Dimitra made lunch for each day, chicken to die for!! So good!! We even had buffalo shaped cookies - delish!

Sharon found this darling antique chalkboard. If you rolled the knobs at the top it would scroll through different school lessons like how to tell time, state capitals, grammar rules, etc. We used the sign to direct customers to the store we used for the workshops. Tim loved the board so much that Sharon gave it to him as a thank you for such a wonderful weekend.

Personal shoppers! Who knew?! We gave everyone a numbered paddle (what you can do with tongue depressors!) and as Tim used a product if a customer wanted it they would hold up their paddle and we would put the product in their corresponding bag - what service!

Monday, May 31, 2010

Memorial Day...

I once was in scrapbook journal swap that had the topic "My Favorite Holiday". Most people chose Christmas or Thanksgiving but I chose Memorial Day. I have happy memories of this holiday from when I was a child. When I was in elementary and then junior high school I was a girl scout. Every Memorial Day we would march in our village parade. That was pretty cool! What I enjoyed even more were the visits we made to the cemeteries in Brooklyn and Queens.

On my dad's side of the family his father served in the WWI. My dad served in WWII in the Navy. The story goes that he went to my grandmother and said "You might as well sign to give your permission for me to enlist because I'm just going forge it if you don't" My grandmother signed her permission. My dad was a tall lanky kid and was several months shy of the legal limit when he enlisted. My dad was also the man of the house as his father (my grandfather died when my dad was 12 or 13). My grandmother was a fairly independent woman for her time. For years she worked in the central Post Office in Manhattan to support herself and my dad. A working woman way before it was in vogue.

She belonged to the VFW Auxiliary and was very patriotic. Every Memorial Day weekend my dad would drive out to Freeport to pick her up and then drive into the Lutheran cemetery in the city. I loved to go along! We would drive into Queens and stop at one of the many florist shops outside the cemeteries and pick up a few arrangements or wreaths and then go in and place them. (From what I can remember the Catholic, Jewish and Lutheran cemeteries were all butted up to each other and covered a huge area.) My dad always brought his clippers, a few yard tools some cleaning stuff to straighten up the grave sites. We also made sure we brought small American flags.

I loved going to the cemetery I would roam around while my dad tended the grave site. This cemetery didn't look like today's cemeteries with their flat grave markers and flat land with very few trees. These cemeteries were built on rolling hills with parkways (highways) bisecting them with twisty narrow roads in and out. Family plots were often marked with two foot high wrought iron fences and gates. There were elaborate headstones and mausoleums. Everything was very crowded together. We'd pay our respects, place our flags and wreathes and leave.

We'd always see a veteran outside the cemetery or on a street corner in the area selling crepe paper poppies for the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW). In my house it was next to a sin not to buy a poppy or two or three, which we did every year. My grandmother would play "God Bless America" on the piano or the "Battle Hymn of the Republic" and sing - my grandmother could not sing...I was taught to respect the flag and my country and the soldiers who had fought and died for our freedoms.

On the more fun side of our trip we also managed to find a street vendor near the cemetery selling large soft pretzels - three for a quarter! What a deal! These pretzels were warm to hot with salt and incredibly soft and delicious, just the best, ahh, what memories.

For me Memorial Day isn't just about the hot dogs, hamburgers and picnics. Nor is it about the parades. It's about remembering what and who came before us. Not only the soldiers but the families that supported them and remembered them in their hearts and in their actions. The sacrifices these past generations made for us to be able to live in this glorious country today. Freedom is never free and to honor those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom is the least we can do. Remembering them and showing the next generation that their deaths were not in vain is our duty to them today and every day.

Monday, May 17, 2010

I'm every woman...

From the sexist commercials of the seventies - "He thinks he'll keep her", to the anthem of the 90's - "I'm every woman!" women have been trying to redefine themselves since before we had to fight for the vote to getting the "pill".

Well, I'm here to say, "I'm every woman!" - Just not all at once, at the same time to the same people. Frankly, I'm over 50 and am tired of it and it's just starting for me! Could I have not planned my life any better or is it worse, I don't know.

I'm an end of the line baby boomer who missed out on all the rebellion stuff - which was good as I'm as about as rebellious as a piece of over done toast - put a fork in me, I'm done...

I was pathetic during the disco daze - can't dance to save my life! Have no clue as to what is proper or improper bar etiquette - don't really drink.

I had to wait to see Sex in the City until it came on in edited re-runs on TBS, plus I'm closer to Samantha's age than Carrie's and NO ONE would mistake my panda bear mind set for that of Samantha's cougar personality.

I'm either a day late or a dollar short, or both... so back to this woman thing.

My household consists of me, my DH - Norman, my DD - Alexa, my MIL - Joyce and Abby, The Puppy. I'm also a member of the sandwich generation. Although my DH and I are closer in age to retirement. We have his 78 yr. old mother living with us and our 13 year old DD - Alexa across the hall. I need a full time referee from the NFL just for those two alone. Since we were all having such a good time we decided to get a dog! Perfect compliment.

Norman and I wanted one because we missed our last dog who passed away suddenly, Alexa wanted one for the cuteness factor, "I'm not picking up any poop!" can still be heard in our house a year later... Joyce didn't want a dog at all - at least nothing she had to deal with (she hated our previous dog).

Now the Puppy looks at me as pack leader. She will obey me... most of the time and while I baby her I also realize she is a dog. I'm still Mommy to her. During the day she will follow me around, sit in my lap and is for the most part agreeable and obedient. We get along very well. I close doors, don't leave food, clothes, tissues, knee highs, pens, highlighters, baseball cards, underwear and other assorted human dog treats out where she can get them. I've dog proofed the area she is allowed in in the house.

To create peace with the other humans in the house and for the duration of the Puppy's first year, she was restricted to our kitchen, family room and sometimes to the Florida room. This weekend the DH and I decided - ENOUGH! Family get ready - here comes Abby! we took down almost all the gates and cleaned up in the other common areas and everyone was instructed to do the same OR close your door! Simple enough, right...WRONG!

MIL doesn't want her scratching at her door (she can't take the pathetic sound) and she doesn't want the dog she loves (yes, she does, whole other post and story) in her room because there is too much for her (Abby) to get into so MIL will just wait until Abby is "trained not to eat her things..."

Alexa has a room like, well, you know, you've seen it. Just go down a few posts. So she wants the dog to come in but to leave all her stuff alone. This will never happen and Alexa will never clean her room so I periodically will hear a scream for "MOM! Abby's in my room and won't leave my things alone!" Did she think I put her there? It's an idea, but Alexa's shriek is much worse than Puppy's bite.

DH - you'd think I'd have a partner, a like thinking, dog proofing, sympathetic hubby - NOT !! He expects Abby to be Lassie, or Rin Tin Tin or at least every well behaved dog that walks besides it's human behaving perfectly in all those dog food commercials. What was I thinking? This man leaves pens, highlighters, papers, sports magazines all over the house - shoes, socks - don't get me started on the socks!

So I can either be a mother, wife, DIL to my human family and deal with them or I can be Mommy to the Puppy and deal with her - NOT BOTH - at least not at the same time! Abby was fine all day long, we went for a ride in the car this morning, got a biscuit at the bank and a bagel chip at Bagel Jay's - yum! We did a little laundry, ran around the house, she barked at the traffic walking and driving past the front door. We played Frisbee in the backyard, she told me when she had to go out. She had a little lap time while Mom watched 'Young and the Restless' - overall a very good day.

Then the two legged family came home and all hope was lost. She got into MIL's room and scarfed down a chocolate bar - I know BAD, very BAD! Alexa just stood there and yelled to us describing what she was doing in her perfect local reporter style, while doing NOTHING!! MIL threw in her 2 cents on what we were doing wrong (with Alexa too, for good measure). DH's presence just incited the dog to jump up and run around even more. he made dinner (YES) while ignoring all bad behavior, shaking his head at HIS mother's comments and walking away as soon as possible and who was left to clean up and in the middle - ME!

So I promptly ran upstairs, sat down at the computer and wrote this. Can you tell!!!!!! I'll never be every woman - and frankly, in this house, it would kill me first!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Shopping til you drop...

I'm surrounded by shoppers, at home and at work - shoppers, shoppers everwhere! The funny thing is they all fall into different categories, let me explain.

The Shopaholic Diva: One guess as to who this is...Alexa, duh! She loves to shop, so much so that she keeps the shopping bags (only the cool stores, of course) as souvenirs. When she gets home she shows us everything she bought, emphasizes the items on sale and then she goes up to her room and photographs her buys! I kid you not. She's got a ton of pictures on her camera of her clothes - oh, to reminisce about the good times!

The Vegas High Roller: This one might be a little harder to guess. It's my MIL (mother-in-law) Joyce. Joyce is on a fixed budget and her one really big joy is the equivalent to hitting it big at the craps table in Vegas - using coupons! She grabs the Sunday paper, takes the circulars with her and goes over them the same way Phil Ivey sizes up the other players at the featured table at the World Series of Poker! Very often at dinner she'll announce how much money she saved that day (along with how many cute babies she saw during her travels!)

The Secret Shopper: Who's left - Norman. Norm will just run out to Dash's after dinner...and come back with all kinds groceries for I don't know what! Or, he'll just go out to run a few errands and come home from BJ's with more stuff for the freezer and paper goods than we need for a few months! My favorite is his favorite Friday evening, after dinner exercise, perusing the aisles of Barnes & Nobles - and coming home with a pile of books whose cost will not be mentioned...

The Lucky Shopper: no, not Abby, Sharon, my boss. She has the most amazing luck when she shops garage sales, antique stores, flea markets and estate sales. The store is decorated with many of her finds. Last weekend I got to go along with Sharon and Dimitra on a shopping adventure down to Caledonia. A story too long to repeat so check it out here.

Now, don't get me wrong, I love to shop but I usually don't take pictures of my finds. How excited can you get over Tylenol sinus and knee highs? I've never been the one for coupons. I'll be sure I won't need the Michael's or JoAnn's 40% off because I'M NOT SHOPPING THERE THIS WEEK AND I DON'T NEED ANYTHING!!! and sure enough I end up at either one or the other. Same with those never ending coupon cards from Macy's - 20% shopping pass! - You pick the date! The weeks I bring them - I don't go. The weeks I go, I forget them or don't bring because (refer to the bold print above).

I go food shopping and find my husband has already bought what we need and not told me, or he comes home the same night with the same thing!

Clothing - I don't even want to go there. Even when I do buy something new, Alexa gives it the once over and I get,"New top? I wouldn't wear that!" Duh! "How much did it cost?" and the twenty questions go on and on...

Wonder finds? - I'm the kind that likes nice even aisles, coordinated displays and everything out in the open. Half the time I walk past the best stuff! I have to know exactly what I'm looking for and I was never good at haggling over a price.

That said, I did come across something at an estate sale and went wild an woolly and got it because it was 30% off. Want to see?
I found these at an estate sale. The couple selling the house had lived in China for a number of years and the house had a lot of Chinese art, pictures and furniture. This is Chinese embroidery. It is just lovely. Brilliant vibrant colors and the artist's chop (signature) in the lower right corner. In front of it is a jade bowl with silver lattice work around it. Don't know if either is worth much, don't care - I just like them!

Oh, and the Shopping Diva - she left earlier this evening for a horse riding, sleep-over, shopping trip with her friend Brenda. She also asked for the Macy's charge before she left because she had both the 20% shopping coupon and $20 off coupon ready to go!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Warning: Parents of Teenagers BEWARE contents!

Exhibit A
You've been warned... So have I for that matter. I'm the mother of a teenager, a full fledged, fashion loving, selective hearing, selective behavior, Jekyll and Hyde teenager - and the female of the species at that - much, much more dangerous.

We've been having that age old tug of war between Mom and Dad and Darling Daughter - CLEAN-UP YOUR ROOM! It was so bad a little over two weeks ago that we grounded her for two weeks. Didn't work. We got her an organizer drawer set for her hair, makeup, beauty, skin, nail, etc. tools - Didn't work.

Exhibit B
Abby loves Alexa's room. She never knows what delightful (to a dog) wonders she is going to find. Adding to the problem is the fact that the door won't latch closed, so all Abby has to do is push it open with her paws, (she usually takes a running jump), and she's in - makes it her favorite room in the house.

So today when Abby(our other demon child) got into her room and disappeared under the bed and could not be coaxed out for love or biscuits (until she decimated whatever it was she found so appealing) I decided it was time to go public.

Exhibit C
Here the 'other daughter' is enjoying her find...Now believe it or not, the room was worse. You could not see the carpet two weeks ago, at all, not even a piece big enough for a big toe to fit.

Now, I admit it, I'm not neat by ANY stretch of the imagination, my craft room is STILL a mess, but the dog doesn't go in and grab my stuff and hide and chew it all to bits. I can still find stuff in my room and my door doesn't latch just like Lex's. With Alexa's room things just kinda migrate into it from their normal locations, like phones, cameras, chargers, food, other people's scissors, markers, glue and adhesives, nail polish remover, you get the idea. This has just gone too far and yes, I know, it's only going to get worse.... HELP!!!!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Let's just forget last week, OK....

Last week sucked - sorry for the language (that is one of my least favorite, never use unless desperate or really true)... So glad it's over and I'm starting on a new week. Nothing big happening, just taking care of some stuff that is long overdue, like the coin that weighs a ton that Alexa decided to roll a few weeks ago...not sure how I'm going to get it the bank (carry that is).

Puppy is getting her stitches out today and is going to groomer on Thursday. We'll have our beautiful, fluffy puppy back!

Norm got short changed on his birthday last week, plus he had to deal with my melodrama. I owe him a dinner...

Alexa is Alexa - spent from Friday afternoon when she got picked up from school by a friend's mother, to yesterday (Sunday) at friend's house for a two day sleep over with shopping thrown in...

Me, well I'm finally going to get some professional help for a pain that has been plaguing me for about 35 years now - enough said...

Good news - The Hillside Scrappers retreat is only 10 - count'em 10 days away! WAHOOO!!! We're going to have a Martini tasting party - if all goes well. Anyone got any good recipes out there??

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Sunday - Funday...?

I'm too in a rush to move these so I'll pre-empt my blog notations by showing you a few recent layouts in photo form. Sorry there isn't a lot of close-up detail, but you'll see below I'm kinda-sorta-not-right-now-working on it.

Glam 13 - Alexa's 13th birthday party. The girls had their nails done, cake by Dessert Deli, games like 'Tin Foil Dresses' and make-up and glam photos by moi. The collage of photos was done by Walgreens - who knew?!?
I am always telling customers in the store that I don't stamp, I scrapbook! (usually in hushed tones) So here is a layout that features that statement - i don't stamp! {That's MY STORY and I'm sticking to it} I'm a scrapbooker! I put examples of my favorite stamp lines along with a list of them (yeah, that many).

I took a 5x7 of Alexa's school picture for this year and I'm trying to channel some of the designers I most admire from My Creative Scrapbook Kit Club to do a layout of our girl.

Several months ago I did a layout with a photocopy of a vintage photo of my mother as a baby, my grandparents (my grandmother, on the left, is so young and pretty in this photo) and my great grandparents on my grandfather's side (I think) using Graphic 45 paper and Prima flowers. The black oval scallop in the center is where my journaling should be - I'm getting there.
Now on to my blog entry for today:

Someone, Connie I think, accused me of not posting lately :-( Well, I did just this past Thursday, but I thought I'd give it a go again. My scrap room looks even worse than after the last time my so called organizing tornado swept through so because I have a whole Sunday at home with hubby and DD downstairs to keep Puccini (the puppy) company, I'm going to spend the day in my room cleaning - or a similar facsimile thereof...

Mind you, the tornado has spread to the hall where I've stacked organized stuff so I can get at my unorganized stuff...and later today I hope to ooze down to the living room to lay out paper for sorting (It's the only room big enough, without foot traffic and doggie paws).

So of course I'm starting my day by doing nothing related to this clean-up at all...trying to figure out how to post layouts and stitch layouts better on 2Peas. Since my layouts are all at work, I've gotten a reprieve from doing that but the governor of scrapping has denied my appeal for delay again, on starting to organize and clean. So here it is, a new post for Connie a photo attempt of my latest layouts (till I can do it the right way) and a shout out for Brian Vickers to come in in the top ten or PLEASE top five in today's 'Hotlanta' Nascar race.

Girl, in the immortal words of DW - Boogity, boogity, boogity!!! Let's go cleaning????

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Happy Birthday Abby????...

Today is the puppy's 1st Birthday! That's the good news! The not so good news is she is spending the day at the vet's getting spayed :-(

Poor baby came through her surgery OK and I'm going to pick her up in a few hours. What a birthday present!

Sorry no image, computer doesn't seem to want to access my photos today, what else!?!?!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Winter Hibernation...

Just call me "Bear". I'm really getting into this hibernation idea. Get up in the morning, have some coffee, let the dog out, settle in to read a little, then watch afternoon at the Olymics - Curling is my favorite for a relaxing afternoon. Slide into the 5:00 news, have a quiet little dinner, do only what you have to until 8:00 p.m. when you settle in with the remote and a dog on your lap and watch the evening Olympics until midnight. Your options for the end of the day are: wait until the news is over (preferably with a Law and Order re-run) and watch the Olympic review, watch the shows I DVD'd or go quietly and sleepily to bed, having been lulled by your daily hibernation routine - now complete. Wake up the next day and repeat...

Yep, just call me "Bear".

I've pretty much been an Olympic junkie since last Friday. I do make a few exceptions like "Jack" (24) on Mondays, but I pretty much will tape anything else I normally watch. Outside of that it's been pretty much me and puppy. Alexa is back to school after the week off. She went shopping, had two sleepovers, went ice skating and managed to collaborate with a friend on a frightfully creative cell project - complete with midocondria and protozoa in a colorful 3-D display.

My equally intelligent husband is leaving for Taiwan on Wednesday with his boss to finalize an agreement with a university there. He's already looking forward to the warm temperatures. His "Silly Game" season gets underway shortly as the cards from Strat-O-Matic came in the mail last week. For those of you who have never heard of Strat-O-Matic sports games - BE THANKFUL!!!! This game is one of my DH's very few vices. Every year since he was in high school (we're talking 40 years!) he sends away for a new set of cards that reflect the statistics of every major league baseball player from the season before. Norm sits down with all these cards and an atlas (yes, ATLAS) to create his own teams and name them after cities, and towns all the country. Then he divides his teams into two leagues (American and National) and starts playing.

Now, this will give you an idea why my DH is so techno challenged. This game has no batteries, no lights, no fancy spinners or game board, no automatic scoring and uses no electricity! You have scorepage, you roll the dice, match the numbers on the dice with what it says on the card and somehow get a full nine inning game of baseball out of it - not counting games that might go extra innings...Norm starts playing in March and plays until he has played an entire schedule of games, post season and World Series. He usually finishes around July or August with a stack of scorecards of each fame about three inches tall (because you score by hand)!

This is Norman's idea of relaxation, excitement and just down right fun. The only thing that would make him happier would be to be in Italy, in a Tuscan villa, playing this "Silly Game". Me I'd rather be on Lake Como with George Clooney - but hey, I always have scrapbooking in Buffalo!

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Still Working on it...

OK, now that I've found and tried another "pretty my blog" site I still have no clue to what I'm doing. I'm sending out a full blown HELP!!!
1. How do I get my title on the header? I think I have to have it fit on the lined tag - ACK!!
2. Am I supposed to put a picture (mine-ACK!!x2) in the box on the right.
3. How do I get the header to stretch to edge of the border?
4. How do I get the label off the top of my printing?
5. Why am I so lame at this?!?!?!

This does nothing to help my feelings of inadequacy. I think I need computer therapy (and the other kind too)...

Wednesday, January 20, 2010


Hi gang! You know the title of my blog just above this posting, especially the sub-title, Life happens when you're making other plans? Well I think I just put my words into action.

I've been cruising many blogs looking for card, stamping, scrapbooking and other paper arts ideas and I came across this 'make my blog beautiful - for FREE' banner on several very artistic blogs so I thought I'd give it whirl.

Sure enough, I've screwed up the whole thing. What you see now is what is left of my original blog template and design. It doesn't help that it's 11:44 at night and I'm working on my laptop instead of on my desktop with my original artwork and the majority of my photos etc.

I hate it when technology and my lousy typing reminds me how incompetent I really am on a computer!

Anyone know how I add a growling smiley face???

Friday, January 1, 2010

New Year 2010...

Happy New Year?! The good thing about a new year, besides the cool number 2010, is that it gives me an excuse/starting point/reason to begin a major organization of my scrap room. There is a challenge on 2Peas that has a method for organizing a space that will have a new chapter every week. This first week is to do a scrap audit of your space, and to do a layout - and as you do it write what works about your space as you work and what doesn't.

These are photos of my space before my last purge and update. This bookcase is gone replace by a white cube storage system that is not working for me because I haven't organized it well enough. I've got three tiers of large white cubes in 3 drawer, one large drawer and two 6 shelf cubes. Above the two shelf drawers are two of the smaller Michael's cubes, part upright shelves and part two shelve cube. On top of this are my paper cutters and finished projects and other decorations that make me happy. Also on the end is a two tier Clip-it-Up storage rack. On the wall behind it is a small spice rack with MM paints.

The bookcase in this photo is still here the ribbons have been replaced by a four self unit that stores projects completed on top, ribbon in jars on the second shelf (which I'm not sure that I like now that they are stored that way, assorted plastic drawer storage (not working) on the third shelf and open storage of assorted stuff on the bottom shelf (again, not working). There is a wire cube behind the bed that stores my cardstock paper by color. Piled in front of the cubes are a few plastic drawers and a tackle box I use for embellies. Needless to say, it's hard to get to any of it let alone remember what I've got. The bed has way more stuff on it now and the floor has lots of stuff too.

Well, nothing like a rousing start to the new year! Do they make a twelve step plan for scrapbookers?

What's on your new year's list of things to do???