H.I. Ate Us– Or, What I’ve Been up to for the Past Eight Months

H.I. Ate Us?  No he didn’t!

Sometimes life gets in the way of blogging; at least that’s what I’m blaming my eight month, unplanned hiatus on.  It couldn’t be laziness or my incredibly short attention span that’s kept me away from sharing my life on WordPress for the past three-quarters of a year.  Since a picture is worth a thousand words, making a mere word is just worth a word, I thought I’d combine the two to let you know what I’ve been up to.

 

 

 

November:  I went through quite a little art phase that began in November and is still going on.  I collage. I paint. I shop at Michael’s.  I make art, not great art, but I think that people at Michael’s probably think I’m Picasso as much as I’m in there!

Look out, Target! Here comes the smooth art stylings of Sprinkles!

December:  In December, my husband made one of my wildest dreams come true!  It involved a bus, the hubs and another man who I hope to one day make my second brother-husband.  Minds out of gutters, dear readers!  My husband took me to Manhattan to see Hugh Jackman on Broadway.  Our seats were close enough for me to see the sweat on his well-chiseled brow.  The whole trip was one of the best times I’ve ever had.

Hooray! There’s the Broadhurst! I’m coming for you, Hugh!

Right before going in. Oh how I wish I’d had the balls to sneak a forbidden photo, or two, inside the theatre, but I know I’m the type who would get caught!

*January:  I couldn’t recount the past eight months without recalling my favorite trashy TV premiers.  VH-1’s Mob Wives premiered in January.  Now repeat after me in your very best Botox inhibited and cigarette induced New Jersey accent:  “You ain’t lived until you’ve seen and heard Big Ang!”  Really, readers, you haven’t!

Courtesy of VH1's Mob Wives

Oh, Gawd, look at her posing! She’s a jewel!

*February:  TV goodness continues with the premier of National Geographic’s Doomsday Preppers.  If this show doesn’t help you get ready for December 2012, nothing will.

Courtesy of National Geographic Channel

Thanks for helping me prepare, dudes! They’ll always be a spot for you in the Sprinkles’ bomb shelter! 🙂

March: I got my first, and only, tattoo.  My oldest daughter designed it and got the exact same one on her bicep.  My youngest daughter wants to eventually get it.  She’s still a little bit unsure about the pain aspect of being tattooed.  The three birds on the branch represent my lovely daughters and me, and the bird above them represents my mother watching over us.  March was the 28 year anniversary of her death.

My healing tattoo. How tough is that?

*April:  Celebrating my 48th birthday in April paled in comparison to the mystical wonder of the premier of TLC’s My Big Fat American Gypsy Wedding.  This show is especially near and dear to my heart because much of it was filmed just 20 minutes away  from my house!!!  I’ve actually seen the following people in my local Michael’s!

Meet Nettie and her younger sister, Mellie. These girls know how to make bling bras, keep one hell of a clean house, and fight like they’ve got nothing to lose!

This fight is taking place outside of the exact same courthouse that I got married in. Too bad it wasn’t on the same day. I would have been a big help to Mellie!

May: We took our annual beach trip to Nags Head, NC.  While there we endured tropical depression Beryl, ate tons of glorious crustaceans, and my husband plucked a glass lizard out of our pool filter!  Yikes!

Behold my mighty husband holding a beautiful glass lizard! He didn’t even hesitate before picking it up! What a man!

June:  Welcome to now!  I’m chilling with the cats and blogging to you.  (Actually, I’m chilling and they’re staring at me.  It’s pretty creepy.)

Are you almost done blogging? I have needs!

Seriously, woman, I’m waiting!

(I like to imagine that my cats sound like Stewie from Family Guy.)

*I do other things besides watch TV.  No, seriously, I do!

What have all of you been up to lately?

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Meet My Daughter…

My daughter rests after fighting off an evil intruder. Photo by Owen Rye

Remain calm. Don’t freak out. All is well, I promise. The fact that I have yet to use an exclamation point proves that I’m not upset. This is not a murder scene. In fact, my daughter, who appears to be the victim, was having a difficult time not laughing when this shot was taken. That girl is one tough cookie! (See, that interjection was a positive one.) She’s only momentarily resting in that disgusting pool of gore after fighting off an intruder, and you can best believe that the poor bastard left with aching junk and a depleted blood supply. Like I said, my kid is tough.

This picture is a still shot from a short flick that her film-student boyfriend, Owen made for one of his classes. Thankfully, this film was made at his house. I’m all for creative expression, but copious amounts of fake blood are not allowed in the confines of my home. They can spray and splatter my yard and driveway until Dexter comes to investigate, but one drop of that stuff on my hardwood floors and I’ll freak!

With my favorite holiday only six days away, I have several Halloween posts in the making, including a REAL ghost story that happened to me! I may even be tempted to vlog again, once I figure out what my costume’s going to be! Stay tuned!

Do you like horror flicks? What type? (I’m a psychological thriller kinda girl—no blood and gore for me!) What will you be watching this Halloween?

What in the World is Going on in the World?

via 123rf

I have a pathetic confession, I have absolutely no idea what the latest, serious news stories are. This is usually not like me. I used to teach school and I know the importance of keeping up with current events. My normal “first thing in the morning” routine is to drink coffee (lots of coffee), read the news on my computer while I watch it on television; perfect multimedia multitasking. The truth is, from around the time the last Harry Potter was released, I haven’t paid one iota of attention to serious news. I’m not blaming this on Harry. Lord knows, the poor guy has had enough on his plate, with defeating “You-know-who” and restoring the wizarding world to normalcy, to shoulder any of my burdens. It is solely my doing, or the doing of my mid-life crisis, that has caused me to delve into the world of escapism. So, for the fun of it, I’ll share with you the few things that I’ve discovered during my six week hiatus from reality.

First off, I know exactly what’s happening on True Blood, and may I share that I wasn’t thrilled with episodes eight, nine, or ten. C’mon, Alan Ball, can’t you at least pretend to have read the

He's the man! (Photo via Wikipedia)

books? Next, I’ll confess that I wish I would have started watching Boardwalk Empire last season. I’ve watched the first seven episodes online and it is AMAZING!! You go Steve Buscemi! I’ve also been delving into documentaries more often than usual. I watched Supersize Me for the third time. I developed an appreciation for street art after my youngest recommended Exit through the Gift Shop and I surprised myself by enjoying Beyond the Mat, a film about the lives of several professional wrestlers.

It’s not just the high quality entertainment that premium channels have to offer that’s been making me forget stuff like who our president is or whether we’re allies with Libya, it’s the less costly, trashier channels that have been keeping me occupied, as well. Have I watched a women reenacting giving birth in a toilet, because she didn’t know she was pregnant? Yes. Have I observed housewives from New Jersey forgetting to follow the golden rule? You know it. Have I tuned in to Joey Greco showing hidden camera footage to woman who is ready to kick her cheating boyfriend’s ass? Yep. Do I know whether or not Eden Wood won the “Rumble in the Jungle” beauty pageant? That would also be a yes. Do I feel guilty for watching any of these low quality programs? Oddly, I don’t.

Picture via Amazon

Before you judge me too harshly, I also read. Like a champ, I read all of the blogs that I subscribe to almost every, single day. I’m also reading several books at once. My bedtime book is The Sea of Monsters; book two of the Percy Jackson series. My living room forwhentheTVgetsboring book is currently Writing Great Books for Young Adults by Regina Brooks, and my bathroom book is David Haviland’s Why You Should Store Your Farts in a Jar & Other Oddball or Gross Maladies, Afflictions, Remedies, and “Cures” (and, no, I didn’t make that up). I’ll admit, none of these are on the classics list, but if their subjects were too heady I wouldn’t be escaping.

As superiorly pleasurable as escapism is, I feel that it may be time to return to the world of the living. So, now I’m left wondering about the happenings of the world while I was “out-to-lunch.” Should I be learning Russian? Has the Zombie Apocalypse occurred? Have scientists discovered a cure for chronic flatulence? Only time, and a few Google searches, will tell.

How do you “escape,” dear readers?

Mr. Sprinkles: What a Funny Guy!

Image by ulayumbgota via photobucket

 Throughout the years, I’ve teased my darling husband just a wee bit for his lack of comedic style, but today, after a telemarketer called for the second time, I had to generously extend him some comic credit. Now, I’m never one to be rude to a telemarketer, but I have been known to mess with one, if they won’t take no for an answer. After all, this is the modern age of malls and online shopping. If I want something, I can usually find it myself without the assistance of a telemarketer. A few minutes ago, I picked up a call that went something like this:

Call #1:

Me: Hello?

Telemarketer: (of nondescript nationality, phoning from a very noisy call center) Hello, I am prepared to offer you international calls for only $4.99 per month.

Me: No, thank you. I don’t usually make international calls. Please put me on your “do not call” list.

TM: (Very passionately) We have no list madam, but we have $4.99 a month international calling!

Me: No, thank you. Goodby…

TM: But madam! I have a proposition. I give it to you for free for one month.

(At this point, I am unable to resist such an offer.  After all, a comment like that is similar to an opportunity to say “That’s what she said!”)

Me: You’re going to give it to me for free for a month?

TM: Yes, free.

Me: So, are you any good at it?

TM: The phone service madam. It is good.

Me: I didn’t think we were talking phone service anymore. I thought we were talking sex.

TM: I am married man!

ME: Then why are you propositioning me?

TM: (Yelling) It’s $4.99 now a month for you, madam!

ME: Sorry, but you generously offered to give it to me free for a month. I won’t pay for it. I never pay for it.

TM: (Exclaiming in total exasperation) You pay $4.99!!

ME: Are you crying?

TM: (I swear he said this!) I never cry! I am a man!

(At this point my husband in his best little boy voice says, “Help me, mommy! I’ve stepped in poop. Hurry mommy! I’m sinking in a big pile of stinking poo!)

ME: I’ve gotta go. My boy just stepped in crap.

TM: But $4.99, Madam! You must say yes!

 I decided the poor guy was about to blow a gasket, so I chose to stop the madness and hung up. Two seconds later, the phone rings again. This time my husband picks up.

Call #2:

Mr. Sprinkles: Hello?

Telemarketer: Are you the man in the house?

Mr.S: Yes, I am.

TM: Your wife. She has hung up on me and I will sue!

Mr. S: You can’t; we’ve already started the proceedings to sue you.

TM: You cannot sue me! Your wife will not accept my offer of $4.99 a month international long distance!

Mr. S: (Sternly) Put us on the “do not call” list.

TM: There is no list!

Mr. S: Don’t call us again, or I’ll put a curse on you! (By this time my youngest daughter has entered the room to listen!)

TM: There will be no curse!

Mr. S: Ha La La Ba Un Da Gaaaaaa! You will burn like fire!

TM: Noooo! $4.99 a…

Mr. S: Ba La La Un Da Ga Haaaaa! You feel that? That’s what a curse feels like!

TM: But…

Mr. S: Bun Da La Ha Da La Baaaaa! You’re cursed now, buddy!

TM: Ok, I end call. (click!)

This is when we all explode with laughter. My husband, the sweet, nerdy, engineer and voodoo priest! Who knew?!

***The poor guy must be a glutton for punishment, because a few minutes later there was a third call that I answered.  I won’t go into great detail, but in my best hillbilly accent, I accused the unfortunate fellow of causing my home to be invaded by ghosts, told him that I never made international calls because “them international people is why we lost the Civil War,” and that “I can’t afford $4.99 a month because it’ll cut into my beer money!”   He’s promised never to dial our number again!

Guess Who’s Back?

I’ve sort of been MIA lately, and for that I certainly do apologize. I love writing this blog and I especially love the friends that I’ve made on here. As many of you know, we moved my daughter into her new apartment last weekend. Her school doesn’t begin until August 1st, so she came back home with us for the week. She long ago promised to be the lead actress in a short film that my youngest daughter’s boyfriend is making for a horror festival. So tomorrow, after the last bit of fake blood has been scrubbed from her hair and after the neighbors, hopefully, stop wondering if we’re making a snuff film at my house, she’ll travel to her own home. Alone.

I remember in her sleepless, first weeks of life, exhaustedly holding her squalling, fitful form at four a.m. and counting on my fingers how old I would be when she turned 18. My lack of sleep begged me to be released from the fretful bondage of motherhood. As her sleep patterns normalized, granting me enough rest to return to the land of the living, I stopped counting the years and the days until she would become independent of me. Instead of my nemesis, she became my daughter; my little girl who loved horses and nature, going barefoot and doing things herself. Like all mothers, I’ll say that she was an amazing child. She is a natural leader and a cohesive force among her friends. She’s talkative, charming, hilarious, beautiful, and has a definite “it” factor. Of course, these are also things that a mother would say.

A good number of her teen years were similar to her first few weeks of life. She stretched and struggled to find her place in the world and like a new mother I toiled to find the right words and actions to comfort her and help her grow into a person worth knowing. Of course, there were screaming matches, and boys who were wrong for her and boys who were right. There were arguments about curfews, piercings, and multi-colored hair, and a rocky stint where she painted her bedroom ceiling black and blasted death metal to prove her defiance to the world. There were groundings and lectures, and lectures and groundings. Like in her early infancy, there were even a few nights that I found myself counting the years until her 18th birthday.

And then magically, sometime shortly after she turned 17, her angst dissipated, the dust cleared, her hair slowly found its way from magenta to its natural blond and she painted her room a soft, buttery, yellow. We started hanging out again and stopped arguing. She even confessed, during one of our late night talks, that she thought I was doing a pretty good job as her mom. By the time she turned 18, the thought of giving her a set of luggage and a bus ticket didn’t even cross my mind. This was a good thing because after graduation, she opted to attend a university only a few miles from our house and to save money she’s lived at home.

Tomorrow when she makes the solitary journey to her new home, my heart will ache when we say goodbye, but it will also soar with excitement for the both of us. It’s her time to fulfill her dream of becoming a doctor, and my time to write my stories and create new memories with my youngest daughter.

So, to my beautiful oldest daughter and friend, I wish you a safe journey. To my readers, I thank you for sticking with me during this sketchy period. Finally, to my neighbors, though you may hear a few screams and see something that looks like blood in my driveway, all is well! I promise!

BY THE WAY…

Do you like free books? If you answered yes to this question, then you owe it to yourself to visit the lovely and generous Deborah Bryan, over at The Monster in Your Closet. Deb is giving away three copies of Sonya Sones’s Stop Pretending, plus one free paperback of your choice (under $20). Please click on her blog for details! AND while you’re there, check out her other posts. She’s a wonderful writer and I’m certain you’ll enjoy her uplifting blog!

Monday Mumblings!

Greetings, fellow bloggers! I’ve gone a bit more than a week without posting, so I have some catching up to do. Here are a few of the topics that have kept me occupied in mind and body.

Shopping

I’m not notorious for loving to shop. In fact, I’ve been told that my shopping skills are similar to those of a man and a toddler. I tend to know what I want before I go, go directly to that item, and then buy it and leave. If I’m forced to shop beyond that point, that’s when the toddler behavior kicks in. I’ll complain about my legs hurting, that I’m hungry, thirsty, and that I need the potty. If that doesn’t work, I’ll cry and beg to be taken home. This behavior is especially disturbing to others when I’m shopping alone.

This past week I’ve shopped with my oldest daughter for her big move that’s occurring on Thursday of this week. She and I have similar shopping methods, so it wasn’t all that bad when we were shopping for things, like microwaves and coffee makers. It was the clothing shopping that felt like a one way ticket on the fast track to hell. She needed business professional and business casual clothing to begin school with. My jeans, t-shirt, and flip-flop girl did not enjoy shopping for these things, but luckily, thanks to the Prime Outlets in our area, she was able to find a basic wardrobe of appropriate attire without spending a huge fortune. (I didn’t mean for that to sound like an advertisement for Prime Outlets!) Shopping tip: Always keep a couple of waters and some Teddy Grahams in your purse for when the worm begins to turn.

Packing

I LOVE organizing things, so who better than good ol’ mom to help with my daughter’s packing. We’re saving money by not hiring movers or even renting a truck. I’ve created a very detailed plan for making this move work with our existing van (sans middle and back seats) and both of my daughters’ hatch-back Yari (the plural of Yaris, of course). Don’t let anyone ever tell you that you’re wasting time playing Tetris for several hours a day. It does come in handy when you need to maneuver an entire apartment’s worth of stuff in three vehicles!

True Blood

Now, that's just cute!

All of you out there who are Truebies know that HBO’s True Blood began its fourth season last night. This certainly kept my thoughts occupied as I counted down the days until I could gaze upon the sweet hot gorgeousness that is Alexander Skarsgard as Eric Northman. It was a celebration, complete with jalapeno and bacon pizza (my daughters’ favorite), strawberry soda, and blood-red velvet cupcakes. I realize that our late dinner would not be approved by the USDA’s dietary guidelines, but it was an evening worth breaking a few rules for!

 

Scrapbooking

My daughters and I have been scrapbooking like little maniacs in our free time. Both girls are chronicling our beach trip with their photos and writings. I’ve been working on a scrapbook that contains pictures of my mother and me and all of her handwritten and typewritten recipes. It also features recipes clipped from our local newspaper and from magazines of the 1960’s and 1970’s. I’ve titled it “From my Mother’s Kitchen; Recipes from Childhood.” I’m writing my memories associated with various recipes and photographs. (I’ve shed a few tears while doing this.) Some of my mother’s handwritten recipes are over 50 years old and are the only examples of her handwriting that I have. So far, I’m very proud of how things are turning out.

Blogging Honesty

 

 

 

 

Whew! Sorry, Tom! I’ve let you down with finishing my 31 Days of Blogging honesty! But, I am a girl who always keeps her promises, so here is Day 21!

Day # 21 Question: Someone, or something, I know I should have let go of a long time ago is…

Something that I should have let go of a long time ago is my belief that people will always do things to the same high standard that I’ve set for myself. I tend to be a bit of a perfectionist in everything I do and I sometimes find myself disappointed when others don’t do things in the same way that I would have. I’ve especially seen this in various work settings that I’ve been in throughout my lifetime. I’ve worked in restaurants, a state park, a women’s shelter, and in schools. No matter what the level of job, I always performed it to the very best of my abilities. If I’m cooking your burger, it’s going to be one of the best damn burgers you’ve ever had. If I’m scrubbing your toilet, it’ll be as clean as you would expect it to be in your own home. If I’m lifeguarding your child at a pool, filling out a Family Protection Act for you, or teaching your child how to read, you can be certain that you’re getting the best of me. BUT, that’s the kind of person that I was raised to be and I have to realize that not everyone has the same work ethic or standards. Please don’t think that my streak of perfectionism renders me a complaining bi-otch every time something isn’t done in the way that I deem proper, because I’m not. I choose my battles carefully and politely and usually only complain if something is a health hazard! I forgive easily and move on. Still, I’m, at times, inwardly nagged when things aren’t as nice as if I would have done them and that’s what I need to stop worrying about.

Hope everyone has a wonderful week!

Tom Asks Great Questions!

What is the one thing that you did as a kid that you wish it was still okay for you to do now, at your current age?…

This is a great question posed by my buddy, Tom Baker over at The Morning Erection, and since I’m up way past my bedtime, cranked full of caffeine, I’m all for the challenge of answering it! My first mental response was flagrant nose picking. Then I remembered my time spent in charm school where Mrs. Miles, my Uber-polite teacher, reminded me time and time again that nose mining is not an activity befitting of a lady. Now, after a few pleasant moments of revisiting the simple pleasures of childhood, I realize that there is nothing that I did way back then that would be forbidden for me to do now.

In my youth, I loved the outdoors. The majority of my free time was spent biking, swimming, and playing games of make-believe in the woods behind my house. These things are all still feasible. I have a perfectly lovely 10-speed in my shed, and while I may not have the same stamina, the same carefree schedule, or the same quick access to a pool and wooded area that I had in my childhood, a quick drive to a nearby park could easily fix that. I have no doubt that I could out bike and out swim any porky little kid who normally spends most of his or her time on a sofa, in a supine position, playing video games and eating endless sleeves of Chips Ahoy for dinner. And, when it comes to imaginary play, I’d have all of those little suckers beat! Look out park patrons, Sprinkles is playing Army just like she used to when she was ten! I might look a bit silly in the woods stalking my husband with a toy rifle in the same way that I would have hunted my brother years ago. I might even get questioned by the park police, but I’m sure, after a short explanation of how I’m revisiting my youth, I wouldn’t be banned from the park, taken to a psychiatric facility for observation, or placed on a terrorist suspect list, at all.

So, there you have it! My answer is a big old nothing. There is nothing I can’t do now that I did way back then (except touch my brain with my index finger via my nostril). No matter how old I live to be, my inner-child is always ready to pop to the surface for an appearance. What about you, dear readers? What activity calls to you from your youth?