Thursday, June 30, 2005

Weekend Assignment #66 -- July 4 Haiku

Weekend Assignment #66: July 4 Haiku! A 17-syllable holiday poem, please!


Fireworks are booming,

The glorious fourth is here

Love the sights and sounds.


Oh, resplendent fourth!

We celebrate our freedom

With bursting fireworks.


Can you tell I love Fireworks?

A Happy and Wonderful 4th of July to one and all. 

Monday, June 27, 2005

Saturday Six - Episode 63

Picture from Hometown

You know, it's awfully difficult to enter my Saturday Six answers in a timely manner since I work every Saturday  and am usually off on several tangents Sunday.  Good thing I'm not one of those folks obsessed with being first!  Anyhoo, here goes:

1. Yesterday, I linked to the journal "Mall Of America," a collection of photos from shopping malls of the 1960s and 1970s.  What store do you associate most with your childhood in terms of happy memories and why?  Is the store still around?

I have happy memories of riding up and down escalators in department stores such as Bamberger's and Tepper's.  Once I got to the age of knowing how and what time to meet up with my parents in a predetermined place, I was set free to pursue this happy activity for as long as I wished.  I was also allowed to roam free among the isles of the toy department and fantasize about buying everything I wanted.  This was about 44 years ago.  Since these stores were located on the other side of the country, I have no idea if they're still in existance.  Can you possibly imagine allowing your child such freedom these days?  Very sadly, I can't.

2. What song makes you the most emotional and why?

It's a classical piece called, "The Lark Ascending" by Vaughn Williams.  This is a breathtakingly beautiful piece of music that never fails to sweep me away into a rush of emotional and nostalgic memories.  It always brings tears to my eyes but they are always happy tears.

3. Take the quiz:  What year were you born under, and what year should you have been born under?

Well!  Whatdayaknow?  I'm a snake but I should've been a dog!  Hmm.

You Were Actually Born Under:

Popular and crafty, you are a master at the art of seduction.
You are intelligent and intuitive - and make a savvy businessperson.
You live life to the fullest, even if it means maxing out your credit cards.
Many people are secretly (and hopelessly) in love with you.

You are most compatible with a Rooster or Ox.

You Should Have Been Born Under:

You are totally loyal, faithful, and honest.
However, you don't trust others to be as ethical as you are!
Straight forward and direct, you really aren't one for small talk.
You are a great listener - and an agreeable companion when you're in a good mood!

You are most compatible with a Tiger or Horse.

4. What time do you typically wake up each day?  What is the latest you're normally able to sleep?  How many hours of sleep do you get in an average night?

Typically wake up each work day:  Between 4 and 4:15am

Latest I'm able to sleep on days off:  6am is really sleeping in for me

Hours of sleep per night:  Around 6 1/2 but I never sleep through the night anymore

5. What frightens you the most about getting older?

The possibility of getting Alzheimer's, the cruelest disease which takes your whole life away from you, your memories, your knowledge of how to do even the simplest things yet your body has to go on as an empty shell for an entirely too long a period of time. 

6. READER'S CHOICE QUESTION #56 from Debi:  If you found the house of your dreams, right price, then discovered that a murder or suicide had taken place in the house, would you still consider buying the house?

Yes, I would consider it.  Houses such as these need an infusion of good vibes.  If everyone shuns them, it'll never happen.


Thursday, June 23, 2005

H2O + Cat = Aqua Kitty


I once told you how much our cat loves to hang out in the bathroom with us, particularly when we perform our morning ablutions. Over the past few months he has graduated from bathroom cat to water cat. As soon as he hears water flowing from the tap in the bathroom sink, he's right there...predictable as clockwork. He sticks his head in the stream of water to get a drink. Hot, cold, lukewarm; it doesn't seem to matter what the temperature is. He's not too successful in this endeavor and the water usually lands on his ears. Finn has to be satisfied with batting the water with a front paw and licking water from it.

Yes, he has his own water bowl accessible to him at all times. I even change the water a few times a day in the warmer weather. He squats down in front of it to take long drinks in the conventional manner for cats. I think he likes to play with water. Sometimes he starts batting the water in the dish around and it looks as if he's trying to scoop it up. Now I'm certain that all cats do not adhere to that oft-said statement that they dislike water and getting their feet wet! Perhaps this cat was a fish in previous lifetime. Funny Finnegan.

If you're never completely sure how much an animal means to you and how deeply attached you've become, I've discovered a surefire test. The other day when I came home from work, there was no sight of Finn anywhere. He always emerges from wherever it is he's been lurking to greet me upon my arrival. I called and looked in all his usual haunts. Then, panic quickly beginning to set in, I looked in the not so usual places. No cat.

I'm the unfortunate type who arrives at the "worst case scenerio" conclusion very quickly. My imagination began to run wild as my brain whipped up the terrible things that could've happened to our cat. I knew I adored this animal and loved the injection of fun and interest he contributed to our family but when he wasn't responding to my calls, I realized that this little creature had become one I loved with all my heart and didn't want to think of his absence from our home. By the time I was practically at my wit's end, into the kitchen saunters HRH Finnegan, the little wretch! He was just fine, thank you very much. My son's friend, Jake, was over at our house visiting and watching the Cub's game. Turns out, our cat doesn't like Jake and beats tracks to the north forty (of the house) when he's around. I'm sure I don't know why. Jake's a good guy. Perhaps it's the smell of his little dog, Cleo, that Finnegan doesn't like. Next time Jake's around and the cat's nowhere in sight, I'll know why.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

At The Movies

Yesterday, I splurged a little and indulged in one of my very favorite guilty pleasures. Extreme film fan that I am, it's a rare day I ever actually get inside a theater. Of course it's always possible to see any movie at home on DVD or on the VCR once it becomes available for public purchase. While it's nothing short of a miracle to see a new (or old) movie, uncut, in the privacy of home at your convenience, it just isn't the same.

There's something so exciting and magical about sitting in a theater, waiting for the lights to dim and the film to roll. It's deliciously satisfying to be alone and swept away into the darkness of the theater with no distractions. Our town has a small film center with four screens which show four different films. Three of the four theaters are very small and I was directed to one of these to see my movie selection. It was like being treated to a private screening. Besides myself, there were only two other men in the audience. It was great! This was the first matinee of the day and the floor was relatively unsticky. I make it my cardinal rule to always attend the first daily showing whenever possible exactly for this reason.

So there I was, sitting in the best seat in the house, waiting for the obligatory previews (which are so long it's as if I've seen another film or two) to end so I could settle down and lose myself in "Cinderella Man". This film has two things going for it and the second one is boxing. I like boxing movies. I'm far and away from being any kind of sports fan but Ido enjoy boxing. I'm not exactly sure why. Sure, it's violent, it's bloody but in a story about boxing, the violence is integral to the plot, it's the boxers' choice to be there and it remains within the confines of the ring.

Ever handsome and charming, Russell Crowe gave his usual stellar performance as Jim Braddock. Mr. Crowe may be an upstart, an antagonizer or "difficult" as an actor but gracious! The man's presence on the big screen and his ability to seemingly become that person he is portraying takes my breath away.

Springsnymph gives this film two thumbs up and says, "check it out!" (Thank you, Roger Ebert and Joe Bob Briggs for those two phrases which I'm sure carry a copyright but I'm risking it here.) I often wish I had the enviable job of being a movie critic; imagine, getting paid to see and write about movies. I think I need to take myself out to the movies more often.

The above links are provided to protect the innocent (me).  I decided I didn't want to take any chances.

Monday, June 20, 2005

Green Reflections

                                  Green Reflections

The voice was soft and inviting. The words were alluring and seductive. The lips that spoke them were well formed and sensual. A hand reached out and caressed my cheek. A veritable feast for the senses was inches away from my face awaiting my response. I turned to face the man from whose lips these soul felt words were coming. I beheld a pleasing countenance and as I lifted my eyes to look into his, I found myself gazing at large, emerald-green eyes. Eyes that were a beautiful dark green and mesmerizing in their intensity. Eyes full of laughter and light that were the shade of a spring-fed lake whose surface sparkles with brilliance when the sun’s rays dance across the water.

It was at this exact moment in time when I abandoned my formerly preferred warm hues of yellow and orange and adopted green as my absolute favorite color. If the windows of this man’s soul were such a gorgeous shade of green, surely this was a positive indication of the kindness of the soul which dwelt within. When these lovely green orbs shone on me, I willingly–wholeheartedly–dove deep down into them emotionally to swim for an eternity in an ocean full of love. My awareness of the many shades of green in my world became sharper. I found myself gravitating more and more to the subtle shades of this lovely color when color was an option of an object or article of clothing I was considering for purchase.  Green is such a soothing color; cool and calming. It’s no small wonder it and its many shaded variations is one of the most extensively used colors in nature’s palette.

The grass-green lawns, plants and the leaves on the trees help to sustain me with their exchange of oxygen for carbon dioxide. The shade from the green leaves on the trees serves as a shelter to seek protection from the sun on a hot summer day. The sight of pleasing shades of green from a variety of trees acts as a refreshing balm to help soothe my soul when I need to seek escape and relax from a difficult day’s bombardment of trials and tribulations. The majestic, deep green firs and pines in the woods, their fresh piney scent evident in the gentlest of breezes, fill me with a sense of wonder and renewal. It is in a place such as this I feel a connection with my creator. The green canopy of leaves which forms from a myriad of branches rising up to meet the sky is more conducive for my meditations and prayer than within the confines of any man-made church.

Yes, green is my favorite color above all others. The beauty of the color green surrounds me in our wonderful world. I love the sight of distant hills covered with carpets of brilliant green grass. I know the deep dark green of vegetables such as broccoli, spinach and kale. I love to see bright green moss, so velvety soft to the touch, growing on tree trunks. I thrill to the seafoam green of ocean waves crashing on the surf. I find serenity in the tranquility of rivers and streams turned liquid green from plant life which thrives within them. I recall my mother’s expressive, ever-changing eyes when I see something that is aquamarine in color. Hers were those wonderful kind that changed from green to blue to grey depending upon what she wore.

My preference for the color of green became even more firmly established when the permanent color of my first born child’s eyes was revealed. The recessive green gene of my husband’s emerald-green eyes transcended the dominant brown of my own to produce a green-eyed daughter. Considering the science of genetics, I have always considered this to be a small miracle and one of life’s greatest gifts to me.



This is my entry for consideration in Judithheartsong's June Artsy Essay Contest:

Saturday Six - Episode 62

Once again,  time for...

Picture from Hometown...

I know.  It's Monday already and I'm just getting around to playing but I've been busy with a project.  And you know what they say, better late than never!

1. Do you do a yearly "spring cleaning" in your home?  If so, have you done this year's version, yet?

No, I dig through my house when the spirit moves me which probably isn't often enough but it's better than nothing.

2. Have you ever been blindfolded and asked to identify which of two drinks is Pepsi or Coke?  If you haven't, do you think you could tell the difference?

I haven't but I'm sure I could taste the difference between the two.

3. You find out that you're going to have a child:  what baby names will you choose?

This is so easy to answer when there's not a chance of this ever happening to me again.  Emily/Daniel

4. You must become one of the Brady Bunch kids for a single day:  which one would you choose to become and why?

I must?  This sounds like a fate worse than death!  I suppose it would have to be Marsha so I could at last find out what it would be like to be the grooviest, most popular girl in school.

5. Where are you going for summer vacation this year?

Husband and I are going to a clothing optional resort for three days and to our favorite hot springs getaway (a place I often mention in my other journal) for five more.  Can't wait, haven't had a real vacation for over three years.

6. What is the most religious thing you do on a day-to-day basis?

I thank God every day for the great life I've been blessed with.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

The Best Surprise!

Seventeen years ago today, I was once again in the hospital having a baby by C-section, the only way I knew how to accomplish this feat. This time around was quite different, however, because it was a planned C-section and that made all the difference in the world. As my pregnancy hummed along and gathered steam, I fully intended to have this baby in the conventional manner. As my due date got closer, I began to get rather nervous and started to worry that what happened the first time would happen again and I would go through another horrible experience. I was never into the whole "birth experience" anyway. I just wanted the end result, healthy and in one piece. Therefore, I told my doctor I didn't even want to try. No problem. He gave me a short time-frame from which to pick the date. It was just like making an appointment for a haircut. I decided June 14th would be perfect and giving the gift of a birthday on Flag Day was an added extra. 


The unexpected knowledge of this baby's existence was a big surprise. I'm still surprised! We had just bought our house three years before and life was good for my husband, my daughter and me. Our daughter was almost 10 when I became pregnant. She was perfectly happy being an only child and often remarked upon that fact. When we took her to the ice cream parlor in town to break the news that she was about to become a big sister, her first response was, "How could you do this to me?" Well! Have I mentioned before that she was always a precocious child? It wasn't exactly as if it was a case of her father and me staying up late nights, plotting how to best annoy her. It's a good thing that pregnancies last many months so that everyone can get used to the idea. Lord knows I had to get used to the idea.

Once you've been pregnant the first time, you just know instinctively when you are again. I saw all the signs and had my suspicions but took a handy-dandy home pregnancy test just to make sure. I did the test early one morning and made breakfast for my husband while I waited for the results. I was afraid to look at the test indicator when the time was up and it was ready to check. I knew what I was going to see and I wasn't ready for this at all. I was enjoying the privilege of staying home and caring for my home and family. I had a child nearing her tenth birthday. I was seeing light at the end of the tunnel of caring for a young child and looking forward to more time to do some things I wanted to do.

At the ding of the timer, I picked up the little indicator stick that housed two little clear beads in a holder at the top. If the beads turned blue, it was time to dig out the maternity wardrobe, not that I had anything around from my first experience. Oh they were blue alright, bluer than blue! To this day, over seventeen years later, they're still deep blue. I know this to be true because I tied a little blue ribbon around it and have hung it on the Christmas tree every year since then. Quite the little conversation piece! I began to cry and it was a long time before I stopped. My poor husband was treated to a new delicacy in breakfasts; scrambled eggs (sort of) with raw onion mixed all through it, well seasoned with tears. 

I was beside myself but it never occurred to me to do anything else but bring this child who sprung from the intense love between my husband and me into the world. And, of course, that's just what I did.

On the appointed day we went to the hospital early in the morning and within several hours, we were the very proud parents of a son. Neither of us had any preference as to the sex of our baby. I had a sonogram with this one but I didn't want to be told what it was going to be. It's one of the few surprises left on earth! The new big sister who never wanted a baby brother or sister arrived at the hospital that afternoon when she got out of school. When she got a good look at her brand-new brother, I think it was an open and closed case of love at first sight.

My son just finished his junior year in high school. One more year and he'll be off to pursue whatever he chooses to do with his life. I'm so glad this young man came along and I've always felt he must've really wanted to be here because we put a lot of obstacles in his way! It's exciting to have an older teen in the house when we're at the age we are...almost 52 and halfway to 55. Having a young person in the house helps to keep you young and on your toes. I like to think he's carrying on the tradition of what I did for my folks. I came along seven years after the fact of a supposedly finished family. My mother always told me I helped to keep heryoung.

I wish my son was more motivated to do his schoolwork and was more of an "achiever" than he is.  He's smart but lazy.  However, when I look at the big picture, he is a joy to behold.  He could be the poster child for the classic "doesn't live up to his potential" syndrome. This makes us crazy but then I take a closer look at that "big picture". He's a good kid. Doesn't drink, doesn't use drugs, isn't in a gang, doesn't tote weapons to school (and use them). He's communicative, affectionate, amusing (very funny at times and cracks me up royally). He is amazingly free of of the dreaded "teenage angst" and I think he would tell me just about everything that was going on and might be bugging him. In these troubled times, these qualities in a seventeen-year old male are not to be made lightly of. We must've done something right, somewhere. We can't supply the desire, the motivation to excel; these things have to come from within. My youngest has had nothing but love, unity, support and continuity in his life. We can offer no more. I think he is the sort who will find his path after graduation from high school.

So, to my son I say, Happiest of Birthdays! You are the best surprise I ever received in my life!

                Free Birthday Cake Clipart


Saturday, June 11, 2005

Time Once Again for The Saturday Six!

Saturday Six - Episode 61 Picture from Hometown




1. When was the last time you looked your significant other in the eye and told him or her how much they mean to you?

I told him I loved him within the past hour but I probably didn't tell him how much he meant to me. This is something I should do a lot more often because he means more to me than anyone else in the world.

2. Which business do you have the longest continuous relationship with:  your bank, your auto insurance provider, your home telephone provider, your cellular phone provider, or your cable company?  How long have you been with them?

My bank; I've been a customer for over 20 years.

3. What is the most embarrassing question you've ever been asked?

I've thought off and on about this question ever since I initially read it. For the life of me, I can't think of one.

4. You have the ability to snap your fingers and be instantly transported to one of three places whenever you wish to go there.  Which three places would you select as your destinations?

I would use this "magic" ability to transport me to 1) the hot springs my husband I love to visit, 2) Jamaica, 3) Home.

5. Last week, the Reader's Choice question asked you to identify your favorite movie line.  Later this month, the American Film Institute will list the 100 Greatest Movie Lines of all time.  Which one do you expect to win?

I have no idea which movie line will win the top spot but I'm willing to bet the top 100 Great Movie Lines will include this famous line spoken by Bette Davis as Margo Channing in "All About Eve",

Margo: (after gulping down another martini and marching to the staircase) Fasten your seat belts, it's going to be a bumpy night.

6. You are given the gift of an original oil painting by any famous artist.  What painting would you choose and why?

I would like to have "The Starry Night" by Vincent Van Gogh. I like the composition and colors; it pleases me to look at it and would look fantastic on my bedroom wall.

Van Gogh - The Starry Night

Friday, June 10, 2005

Weekend Assignment #63: Amusing Amusement Park Moments

Amusement rides and I are not too amusing. In fact, we're not even very good friends. I'm not a thrillseeker (in any sense of the word) when it comes to gyrating, twisting rides that turn you every which way but hopefully not loose. I am definitely not the date to take along to a place such as Six Flags, Marine World or any of those other places that are home to contraptions designed to spin you around in a circle, only to end up with an upset stomach as a souvenir. My speed is more geared to the ferris wheel or large, beautifully appointed carousel. Ho hum.

Vienna: Riesenrad - the Giant Wheel at the Prater (photo by M.Torres)                          

On one of our two trips to Florida we went to DisneyWorld, of course. Before I had time to open my mouth to protest, I was in line to go on Space Mountain. I didn't want to go on Space Mountain. I am extremely suspicious of any ride I can't see before I climb aboard. I want to know what it does, how people react to it; how they look when they get on and when they disembark when the ride is over. Eventually, I recall being seated in some little craft with strong bars along the side on which to grab ahold. I took ahold alright, more like a deathgrip. As the ride started up, I closed my eyes and held on as tightly as I could. As our "car" was being hurtled this way and that, my husband kept piping up with words of encouragement and helpful suggestions such as, "You should see this. This is great! Honey! Open your eyes, you don't know what you're missing".

I didn't want to see. I wanted to miss it. I didn't want to be there in the first place! It wasn't great (for me) and I never opened my eyes throughout the duration of the entire ride which seemed to go on for at least a week. To this day I don't know what the actual time frame of this ride actually is. Let's think. A ride at Disneyworld. What's the standard equation? Wait in line 30 minutes for a three-minute ride. Funny how time crawls when you're trapped into something you didn't want to do in the first place. Obviously I survived Space Mountain. Everyone in my group was so thrilled with this ride that they proceeded to get back to the end of the line for another go-around. I sat on a bench in the hot Florida sun, waiting for them to emerge, hopefully satiated with the Mountain of Space. As I waited patiently, I contemplated the eight gashes I had inflicted upon myself unknowingly from dug-in fingernails-of-fear on the palm of my hands that mysteriously appeared when I alighted from the ride.  These were my souvenirs. 

My Space Mountain experience dates back to over 23 years ago. Since then, I've come to appreciate flume rides-- but only if the dramatic, final drop doesn't give me a royal case of whiplash for the next week or so. Oh yes, I've come a long way, baby. Now, where is that beautifully painted horse, all saddled up and ready for me to ride?

Thursday, June 9, 2005

My Head May Be Full of Words But Sometimes There's Nothing to Say

A vicious circle; well, maybe not so vicious as enlightening and I have discovered one. There's no time to write entries when we're busy with life. Yet, there's nothing much to write about if we're not busy with life. Why, it's a downright ephiphany.

I've kept my journal going for more than a year and realize that like so many things i life, its content has become cyclical in nature. We usually experience the same events around the same time each year. Holidays, birthdays and special occasions roll around on cue on a regular basis. Once we've shared our memories or told our litttle stories and anecdotes, there's not much left to write about. This could be the reason why many journalers fade quietly into the sunset, abandoning their journal for someone to discover and click on at a future date and wonder why this person stopped adding, three or twelve months ago. This might be why the number of entries in heretofore regularly-fed journals may be less.

These journals which we created with such enthusiasm and loving care can become demanding taskmasters at times if we let them. The pressure to think up and create entries on a regular basis can weigh heavily upon us. It's difficult, though challenging, to come up with scintillating subject matter about which to write an interesting entry. I don't know about anyone else, but my daily routine is hardly full of exciting madcap adventure to parlay into fodder for my journal. I have no desire to fill it with the mundane play-by-play description of my life. In fact, I've made a conscious effort all along to avoid doing so at all costs.

Then there's always the matter of avoiding that dreaded demon of writing and conversation--repetition! I'm already at the age when I sometimes wonder if I actually said something to someone or did I just think that I meant to say that something. Or perhaps, I wrote about it to someone, somewhere but was it in my journal or was it sent along to the person I meant to contact and so on and so on, ad nausem. Yes, indeedy! I can drive myself crazy very nicely; don't need much help from anyone else.

I guess the bottom line is that occasional lulls are to be expected in the Journals of J-Land. That won't keep me from checking back once in awhile on my favorites to be sure I haven't missed something. Can't always rely on those alerts, you know.




Ferries and Cherries and Knives, Oh My

Question 60 Childhood vacations   

Tell about a favorite childhood vacation.

One summer, long ago, my dad and his brother decided to visit an elderly aunt who lived in Nova Scotia. We lived in New Jersey and my uncle lived far away in California at the time. After a bit of planning, it was decided that my cousin and I would accompany them on this trip. I was quite thrilled because it's always a treat to go off somewhere with your dad and have him all to yourself for a little while. I also looked forward to spending some time with my cousin whom I'd met only once before. I was almost 14 and he was around 12 years old.

We drove from New Jersey to Maine and then took a huge ferry, the Bluenose, car and all, over to Nova Scotia. I'm afraid I don't remember much about my great Aunt Lida. However, I do remember a couple of amusing incidents that occurred during our visit.

When we were still in Maine, my dad ordered a drink before dinner at a restaurant. I don't think it was anything too exotic, my dad wasn't much of a drinker and certainly not an exotic one at that! The bar was in clear view from our table and it was soon obvious that the bartender had no idea how to make this drink. He was rapidly thumbing through the pages of a small book looking for some clue as to how to begin. Within a short time, my dad was presented with a margarita in a martini glass, minus the traditonal salt around the rim and a maraschino cherry was lurking redly at the bottom. Now that I think about it, I guess Maine is a long way from Arizona which is where my folks picked up the habit of enjoying an occasional margarita. Words cannot describe the look that was on my father's face!

Several days later we found ourselves in a nice restaurant following an afternoon of visiting with my aunt. That is, we thought it was a nice restaurant--we were the only patrons there at the time. Hmmm.. Some of us ordered steak and no steak knives arrived with the meal. It was hard going, trying to cut the meat with the regular knife that was part of the table setting. My dad asked the waitress for some steak knives, please. She appeared to give the matter some serious thought and headed off towards the kitchen. She was gone for some time. Eventually, she returned with one sharp knife for us to share. It wasn't a traditional steak knife. In fact, it looked like the one and only knife that was to be found in the entire kitchen.

These were the kind of situations which start out to be somewhat annoying, begin to gather steam and ultimately end up to be very funny in the telling and retelling. I know, I had to be there. My dad was a dear man but he was more of a serious, scholarly type than jocular. It was marvelous to share some great laughs with him during the course of this little junket. It wasn't a very long trip but it left me with some very special memories of my father.

To participate in The Journal Jar click here:


Saturday, June 4, 2005

Saturday Six Episode 60

Picture from Hometown  

1. Who is the last performer you saw live in concert? What is the last film you saw at a theater? Which was more worth the money you paid?

Obviously I don't get out much. I thought it was Ray Charles, my husband says it was Hot Tuna (Jorma Kaukonen and Jack Casady) and we both think, wait; it may have been Pete Townsend. My final answer? I'm going with Hot Tuna, a great group from the early seventies which played right in our own town at a small theater. The last film I saw in a theater was 'Kingdom of Heaven". The live show was definitely the better show for the money.


2. What do you do more of in a typical day: work, sleep, eat, exercise. watch TV, surf the web?

Are we talking a 24-hour day here? Since I work 8 hours a day, five days a week and try to get at least 7 hours of sleep each night, working and sleeping are about tied for first place.


3. Your office brings in a new drink machine and it's your job to fill the eight selection slots. What drinks (non-alcholic, of course) do you select?

I stopped drinking soda several years ago but if I had to fill eight selection slots, my choices would be:

Pepsi, Diet Pepsi, Diet Cherry Pepsi, Canada Dry Ginger Ale, Sprite, A&W Root Beer, Lipton Ice Tea and Cherry 7Up.


4. Take the quiz: What is your expression number? Do you agree with the description it gives you? What do you disagree with most?

Your Expression Number is 2

A mediator and peacemaker, you get along well with others.
You light up in group situations, but struggle when you're alone.
Modest and understated, you accomplish more than you give yourself credit for.

Cooperative, courteous, and considerate are words people use to describe you.
You know how to handle anyone, no matter how much of a pain they might be.
Tactful and friendly, nearly everyone who knows you admires you.

Sometimes you are overly sensitive and easily hurt.
When you get too sensitive, you can become shy and uncertain.
At your worst, you can be apathetic and withdrawn.

This is amazingly accurate. However, I don't think this is very scientific. Lol....! The one thing I disagree with the most is "You light up in group situations, but struggle when you're alone." I thrive on "alone" time.

5. Counting all light fixtures and lamps in your home, how many bulbs do you have in place, and how many of them are on right now?

This question was a real eye opener. The first amazing thing is that I actually went around the house, inside and out, and counted the bulbs! And here I thought I had a life. The second amazing thing is that I counted 37 and that doesn't include two nightlight bulbs. How many on right now? 4. I have a real "thing" about top lights (read I can't stand them!!) and I use a lot of closer to the floor lighting.

6. READER'S CHOICE QUESTION #55 from Laura: What is your favorite movie line ever and why?

This has to be one of the most difficult questions to answer for me since I've been playing The Saturday Six. There are so many; how to choose one? In my family, we quote lines from films all the time; we can practically carry on a conversation in "movie speak". At least ten great lines popped into my head right off the bat. I wrote them down, closed my eyes and pointed to:

"I feel", says Curly Bill Brocius to the cosmos after emerging from an opium den/"Tombstone"

Why? Haven't you ever felt....just capital? I have.

Wednesday, June 1, 2005


This has been a bittersweet day. When my daughter called on the phone this afternoon and I heard little-girl misery emanating from a grown woman's voice, I knew something was amiss. She called to tell me they had to put their dog down who's been suffering lately from pancreas and kidney-related problems. This is not my daughter's first experience with dealing with the untimely but necessary demise of a beloved animal. That fact doesn't make what happened today any easier. She and my son-in-law loved this dog. Today is their second wedding anniversary. Next to my own wedding day and the birth of my two children, two years ago today was one of the happiest days of my life. How very sad that such a thing should have to happen on this, of all days.

I feel bad for poor Brody but I know he had a wonderful, much loved life with his adopted family who rescued him from the local animal shelter. They had him for less than a year but it was a much happier life than the one he was experiencing penned up in a cage waiting......waiting for someone to take him home. My daughter and son-in-law are very kind, thoughtful, loving people and I empathize with the grief I know they're feeling this day. The loss of a beloved animal is very real and can be quite profound. It is times such as this that I sometimes wonder why we continually set ourselves up for losses such as these which are inevitable when we bring animals into our home. Their lifetimes are much shorter than ours but they offer and provide so much love, companionship and, often, blatant amusement that it's more than worth it.

No one ever said life was easy. It certainly isn't. To you, M and C, I want you to know how sorry and sad I am about what happened to your Brody. My heart aches for you both. I know you will find solace and comfort in one another and rejoice in your mutual happiness that you each found a mate to help get through a difficult time such as this. Alas, life deals out many of them. I love you both very much.

For an update of the cause of Brody's sudden ailment please click on this link: