Tuesday, September 24, 2013

The Ideal Man & Woman

Sitting around on a week-day night, drinking alchol and eating hot wings with celery sticks and ranch dressing is not conducive to intelligent conversation between single and platonic friends. Nevertheless, this is what happened to me, a gay guy, two straight guys and a recently-dumped female. (Sounds like I'm about to tell a dirty joke, doesn't it? Maybe.)

We actually came up with (okay, mostly they, because I can't hold my liquor) a list of conclusions.

The ideal man:

  • (If really unattractive) has a fat wallet, and/or high-salary profession, and/or high profile and exciting life, and/or great bedroom skills. Or maybe he's just over-paid and overly generous to a fault.
  • (If moderately attractive) has a great job, and/or looks cute holding a kid, and/or has a personal charisma, and/or talks a great "game," and/or has great bedroom skills.
  • (If really attractive) doesn't wet himself in public.
The ideal woman:
  • (If really unattractive) has the same things as an unattractive man and/or is really smart, and/or is really cunning, and/or lacks any morals whatsoever, and/or can treat men like crap and make them want her just because they will never be sure they can keep her, and/or makes a man feel like he has the best bedroom skills ever.
  • (If moderately attractive) could do better but settled for the one she got, and/or has a great job and is generous out of stupidity or neediness, and/or has either great bedroom skills or great faking-it-in-the-bedroom skills.
  • (If really attractive) doesn't wet herself in public (unless it turns a guy on).
You'll think I'm kidding, but this is what came out of the conversation my friends and I had. (I might not want to be friends with a one of them anymore.)

Does it matter that we were all a little bit bitter and lonely, on our way to being pissy-drunk, and feeling completely safe with each other? Maybe. But, if you look at North America as a general snapshot of life, isn't there a little bit of truth in there? Don't you (even if secretly) agree with the observations? And, yes, I know that they are about as deep as wrinkles on a teenager.

My personal input about men didn't get past my declaration of "They need what they don't want and want what they don't need." My whole take on what I think men think of as the ideal women was completely bitter:

"She has the breasts of a nursing mother, the hips of a teenage boy and the ass of perfection. Must look good in heels." (I won't get into the whole big ass vs little ass debate.)

So - were my friends and I really lopsided and sexist and ignorant in our general observations, or did we actually see through the Jack and Coke to make some sense? (I don't care how you feel about the other stuff, I stand by my theory on the ideal woman.)


Monday, September 23, 2013

When Life Hands You Lemons...

When life hands you lemons, make...

Blah, blah, blah-ba-de-blah. Just another cute saying. Unless you put it into action.

After I read about this family - who turned an unfortunate happening into a beautiful event, I had to ask myself when was the last time I did something for anyone.

To be truthful, as generous as I would like to think that I am, I'm really more apt to break out into a rendition of "What Have You Done for Me Lately" than I am to be a quiet blessing to someone in need. And, you know what? Shame on me. My mother raised me better than this.

I can only count one decent thing I've done in weeks and weeks, and -  still being honest for the moment - it wasn't totally without selfish motive. (Loussac Library has set out places for food to be donated to hungry children. I dumped in a couple bagfuls a week ago. Generous of me if you don't count that I had just cleaned out every pantry in our apartment. Cleaned out of all the can goods and box-stuffs that the roommate and I never use. Don't even know why we had them in the first place, so... Yeah. Hold that applause for us two greedy, over-fed bitches.)

My parents taught me that generosity isn't giving a dollar when you have ten, but giving ten when you have eleven. In the case of my sorry-assed donation to those hungry children, I had ten dollars and gave ten cents. To children!

While there are young ones out there, in need of basic nutrition, I'm hoarding boxes of cereal (when I eat cereal once about every other Saturday) and 3 bags of brown sugar because, heaven help me if I ever run out of brown sugar for me coffee. Isn't that kind of pathetic? Even worse: my roommate has, at this very moment, a Costco-sized box of breakfast sausage in our freezer. That heifer don't cook! How big of us to give away three-month old food that we were never going to eat... Basically, we gave those children our throw-away food. We gave them our garbage.

(Right now, If I believed in ghosts, I'd be looking for my mother's hand smacking me upside my head.)

Since I read about the Fowlers, I've been telling myself that I really want to be better about sharing. I want to be a better person. The next time I have a chance to do something for someone - with time or money, or whatever - I want to give ten of my eleven.

I hope we all take the Fowler family up on their challenge to start a trend in giving.


Saturday, September 21, 2013

Still Yakking About Hacking

(I know that my post title is lame, but it gave me a moment of joy.)

Since I discovered hacks for cooking, cleaning, writing and exercising, I'm just all about the hack. Here are some more of my favorite (mostly) food hacks or sorta-hacks and hack sources. The hacks are sometimes hacky and sometimes just cool ideas. Use, enjoy and pass along.

That's enough for today. I'm going over to check out that Rapportive add-on...


The Happy Dread of the PFD

Well, it's about to be that time of year again. The time when it's advisable to avoid Walmart, Target, Costco, Sams, Best Buy, Toys R Us - and any other place that sells anything.

For those who don't know about the Alaska PFDs, they are not personal flotation devices (and, yet, for some people, I guess they kind of are - of a economic type). They are the Permanent Fund Dividends.

The PFDs are about to be deposited into bank accounts all over Alaska on October 3rd. People who receive the money generally lose their minds. The impulse shopping will commence. Or maybe I can't call it 'impulse shopping' if people have been sorta, kinda planning it from the second the amount was announced.

I was at the library two days ago when it hit the news that eligible Alaskans will be getting $900. People reacted in various ways. Some of them shrugged because they know what they have to do with theirs and it doesn't include the luxuries of saving or taking a vacation. (Mine, for instance, is going straight for medical bills and car repairs.) Some folks got on my nerves with their complaints about the "small" amount. Other people went right into shopping mode. I swear I saw the Amazon and Best Buy websites popping up on computers all over the library.

I use my dividend the way my sister and mother and I always did before. Needs come first, saving comes next, whoo-hoo last. (There was usually very little to whoo-hoo about.)

When the kids were still at home, my mother, sister and I would pool everyone's PFDs and use part for the house (paying extra on the mortgage or replacing a dying appliance). Part would go for stocking up the freezer with enough stuff to keep the kids in school lunches for months. The year that two of the kids decided they wanted to be the Dizzy Gillespie and Robert Mapplethorpe of their high school, we sprung for an band and photo supplies. (And the fees - you never count on the fees that come with any extracurricular school activity.) For our kids that were teenagers, we'd give them fifty bucks of their dividend to hold. If they were younger, they got a hotdog with everything the next time we were out somewhere. The rest of the money went in the bank.

We used to get criticized by some friends because we didn't give our kids their whole dividend. My mother shut them right up. She'd tell them that our kids got their dividend all year long - when we paid their medical bills and fed and clothed them. The love was free, but because we weren't their bio-parents, they weren't covered under insurance from our jobs. Let a kid break an arm and need the local E.R. You can go damn near bankrupt.

All our kids are grown now. The ones who live here and get a dividend are dealing with their own families to take care of. So far, they've remembered how we raised them and always use any extra money well. If we taught them nothing else about the PFDs, they know to avoid the stampedes going on outside every major retailer in town.

What do the rest of you plan to do with your dividend? Save, spend or split?


Friday, September 20, 2013

One Note vs Evernote

Okay, so it's been a few days since I started playing around with Evernote. I like it. I like it a lot.

Last night, +Gabrielle B and I were on the phone. I told her about my new-found love in desktop applications. The heffa suddenly reminds me about Microsoft's One Note. (I can call her that because we're family and I say it with love.)

I think it was when I was using Windows Vista that I first saw One Note. At the time, I just thought it was this annoying something (I didn't know or care what) that kept popping up whenever I tried to use Word or Excel. I silenced it. It was getting on my nerves. Never thought about it again.

When I got off the phone with my niece last night, I took at look at One Note. I wanted to compare it against Evernote. Is it nice? Looks like it. Does it have many of the same features as Evernote? Seems to.

Right off the bat, I have to say that I prefer Evernote. For one thing, it's easy to start using (and then learn as you go). It looks neater and more organized. Also, as far as I can tell, One Note doesn't have the "card view" feature that I love in Evernote.

I'm guessing that One Note is every bit as good as Evernote (and it's free, so that's a plus), but it's going to take me longer to learn its ways. Since I'm in the middle of a project that's going so well in Evernote, I'll finish it first. When I have time to jack around with One Note, I will give it a try. Gabrielle is using it already and we've decided to keep comparing our work. (Of course, she's working on things to do with obtaining her Masters degree while I'm just effing around with some fiction. ~smile~ Really.)


Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Best Writing Software (so far)

When I recently posted on some of the aids I'd found for writers, I skipped one: Evernote. I'd used Evernote on my Android and just wasn't impressed. Of course, I hate typing anything more than a quick text on m phone.

I gave Evernote (for PC) a try just because. Guess what? I really do like it.

One of the things I want in writing software is a way to take an organize pieces of a story. Scrivener has a corkboard feature which is nice (so do a couple of other programs, like Celtx Plus) but I wasn't crazy about everything else it has. Also, I'm still trying out Scrivener and Celtx (not Plus) to see if they are worth paying for.

Evernote has two advantages that I could see right off the bat. First, it's very easy to get started with so I didn't need to spend hours and hours figuring out all the features. It will take some time for me to get completely comfortable with the entire package, but I can work with it as I learn. Second, it's free.

As far as the ability to visualize and organize a story, Evernote doesn't have a specific index card type feature. The way it's set up, though, it gives me the same benefit as a board. Kind of hard for me to untwist my brain enough this morning to explain, so:

The "Cards" are in the middle pane

This is the "Index" view. The "Cards" are now shown as lists at the top.

This is the "Snippet" view

You get the idea, right? You can piece together your outline (or chapter and sections) in the right-side panel and still see an overview in the center panel. The far left side is a navigator-type section for all the different Notebooks and such. Because I am using the "free" version, I have the ads and stuff, but that's not a big problem. I am thinking of buying the full version.  To be honest, I'm not really using the software to it's fullest, but it's working well for me as is.

Good luck with your projects.


Sunday, September 15, 2013

For Writers

It's time to pass along some links for the writers. Let's just do it.


Functional Helps
  • Grammar Girl
  • Grammarly
  • Using Google "define" search operator (ex: define sassafras)
(also search for these)
  • OpenOffice
  • Abisoft
  • Libre Office
  • Neo Office
  • K Office
  • SSuite Office
  • Kingsoft Office
  • SoftMaker Free Office
  • Zoho
  • Think Free Office
  • Live Documents
  • Google Apps
Misc. Tools
And, finally, Just Writing

  1. Storybook
  2. FocusWriter
  3. WriteMonkey
  4. Ommwriter
  5. Q10
Good luck and, remember, only do it if you love it. That goes for everything in life.


** Be warned: Unless you want to be annoyed with the Cnet downloader's offers for other software, try to use "direct" links. Cnet's "offers" have not always been easily noticed in the downloading process. If you use theirs, watch carefully for the "add-on" offers. I once nabbed some stuff I just did not want & had a hell of a time getting rid of. ("Direct download" links are usually shown just under the big green Cnet download icon.)

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Tell Me If I'm Wrong...

I promised to tell how my life instantly got better, right? Okay. Here we go.

Since I've complained on here so much about my roommate, I'm almost hesitant to bring up the situation, but - there's an ending (I hope).

Instead of just "discussing" things with Noni (fake name), this third and last time, I put consequences on the table: if she continued to use the living room as a bedroom, smoking up the place and turning it into Pigsty Central, I was going to let her. As long as she wanted to pay for the privilege. I don't see why I should pay half the rent when I don't get to use a fair share of the living space. I explained that unless things changed BY the 13th, I was taking $150 of my part of the rent. & I'd give her a last "heads up." (By the way, I'm pretty sure the library was getting ready to charge me rent for all the time spend there to get away from the four walls of my bedroom.) Oh - in just a minute, I will explain why the 13th was an important date.

That discussion we had went great. Noni agreed that she was hogging space by not using her bedroom. She agreed that she needs to help with the housekeeping. She agreed and agreed and agreed some more - in between the tears. (Of course, all that boo-hooing she did made me look and feel the like Bitch of the Northwest. I am not kidding even a little when I tell you that she spent over four hours the day after our talk just sitting and sobbing like a lost child! I went back to the library.)


Part of our discussion was about how, if she didn't get moved into her bedroom (to at least sleep), that I would be going to Walmart to put a futon and coffee table for my bedroom on layaway the minute I could. Layaway started on the 13th, which is why I picked the date for a Noni's "heads up." Yesterday, I had a friend ready to go by Walmart to set my things aside. Noni woke up at around the crack of nightfall - as energetic as a puppy - got dressed and went out with friends. (She selects her moments of energy carefully. This is a woman who has turned sleeping into a marathon sport. I've never seen a person sit that long without moving who didn't get sores on their ass. But the minute she has club to cruise by or wants to go shopping, she turns into a cyclone of movement.)


I didn't want to ruin her whole night out, so I waited up for a while then emailed Noni , before I went to bed, that I was not planning on paying a full half of the rent this coming month - just like I had told her when we talked.

Around one in the morning, I woke up to go to the bathroom and my phone's email icon was lit up. Noni was letting me know that she just could not pay a bigger portion of the rent so she would be sleeping in her bedroom from here on out.


She came in about a half hour later and flopped down on the chair, ready for the night as usual. I just had to do it: I asked her if I should plan on waking up to the glorious sight of her passed out in the living room, as usual.

Now, why is it that people act all butt-hurt when they actually have to do the right thing?

Bottom line: Noni spent the next couple of hours moving some stuff into her room (making as much noise as possible, as if I give a flipping eff-you-cee-kay), huffing and puffing to put a grounded and pissed off teenager to shame. (Again, I should care how much?)

Since she actually moved and it wasn't to the beat of music, she'll probably sleep for the next three days. Good.

For the first time since - ever, I woke up and made coffee and started my day without having to look over at my roommate, feeling like this:


A Hacking Good Life

Life got instantly better for me tonight. I will explain that in a later post. The thing is, I'm in a good mood - a sharing mood.

If you haven't heard of Flipboard (for phone, in my case), I think you should check it out. It's basically reading, collecting and sharing articles: news, sports, life - whatever floats your boat. Any kind of "hacks" are currently floating my boat pretty high. Life hacks, DIY hacks, whatever.

Here are some of the hacks I've seen since subscribing to several "magazines" on via Flipboard:

  1. How to fold a fitted bedsheet. (It drove my military dad crazy that I'd just sort of roll them up. Neatly.)
  2. Repurpose an old fridge. (The term "repurpose" will start to get on my nerves soon.)
  3. Configure all cores of your processor for full use. (I can't wait to try that one, but on a clearer-headed day! Took three tries just to type out the link text.)
  4. Decorate with balloons for Halloween. (I don't do Halloween, but the balloon idea is cute.) Similar idea is here.
  5. Use YouTube as an alarm clock (How tight is that? I could wake up on gym days by jamming out to this. Or start off a Saturday morning relaxing to this.)
  6. Making these tea-light jars could be a nice bonding project for parents, aunties, siblings, whoever. (My sis-in-law Keva would have been all over this with my niece.)
  7. These freaking cute planters are something my niece Gabby will do. (If I call supermom Keva, Martha-mom & Gabby is Cathy Creative. I'm lacking. My planters would look like they had epilepsy.)
  8. I will be making the unpoppable bubbles for D.J., bet that. (Let me be honest: with or without D.J., I can't wait to try them!)
  9. If you're going to get one, make it a temporary tattoo. (Tip: You might want to get someone with passable artistic skills to do the markings, i.e.: not me.) Personally, I don't like tattoos on women. It seems un-fem, but, hey - that's just me. 
  10. Learn to say F.U. in different languages. Maybe if I say it in Latin, I'll sound like an educated sailor. (I see you looking back at #9. I'm not a hypocrite, I'm just complicated.)
  11. This hack is to simplify Wikipedia articles. (I checked this out. Meh. Not sure I could use articles that stripped down.)
  12. Use this site to remove your personal data from other sites. (Haven't checked out this one yet. What data do they collect?)
  13. Reading car dashboard lights. (I already know the main one for you-better-put-in-some-gas-before-you-have-to-walk-your-ass.)
  14. Guide to dressing well. (All Walmart shoppers - please, please, please take heed.) Just kidding. I'm generally okay, but I did wear a day-glo green watch with an electric pink jacket and "vibrant purple" nail polish with blazing blue sweats to the gym the other week. What the hell was wrong with me that day? Let's just file that one in a don't ask/don't tell file.
  15. Questions that an interviewee should ask (and that I'm going to send to all my nieces and nephews.)These questions are more than "impressive," they are vital.
  16. Educational websites for everyone. (I'm going to hurt my computer getting over to the ones on math. I found out the other day that if I was math-challenged before my sarc, I'm now math-illiterate.)
  17. A Google Maps mystery? (I actually did this and... I have no idea what is up with what I saw. Check it out for yourself.) Note: when instructions say to "go up" or "go left," it means to use the arrows of the compass at the top left of the map screen. 
Pretty cool stuff, right? Enjoy


Thursday, September 12, 2013

Where Did Manners Go?

I'm not sure what's wrong with people anymore. There seems to be such a climate of apathy*, a lack of common manners and personal pride. No wonder so many of the relationships I see are in trouble. People have forgotten how to treat each other. We don't care enough about strangers and we don't care much more about loved ones - not if you go by the way we behave.

I was at the store yesterday where a young woman with two  kids, one of them disabled, was struggling to deal with groceries and kids - in a rainstorm. She left her shopping cart near the trunk of her vehicle while she settled her kids in the back seat. One child was about three and, of course, she probably didn't want him taking off into the parking lot (like young ones will do). The other child, about seven, seemed to have a physical disability with controlling his movements. I had parked nose to nose with her and was getting out of my car when I noticed her cart starting to roll a little. Some impatient "gentleman" was trying to pull into the space next to her and the cart was in his way. He blared his horn over and over, for her to move the cart.  The poor woman was trying to finish seating the kids, but got flustered because this man would not stop. I went over and moved the cart out of his way so that he could lay off his freaking horn. And you know me: one day I'm going to get my ass beat from stepping to people who piss me off. I stood there long enough to give him a good shaming stare-down. When he was too chicken-shit to say anything, I called him a rude jackass. (I have angels flying around with their swords drawn to protect me from my own bravery, I swear.)

Why are people so damn rude and impatient? What was this man's problem? Did he think the woman had telepathic control of the cart? Was he in a hurry to get inside for his psych meds? What the hell? And I do know that I stooped to extreme rudeness in my reaction, but, damn.

I remember when it was almost everyone's natural reaction to hold a door for a person coming up behind. A few days ago, I damn near got taken out by a man shoving past me and throwing open a door to get into the library. People don't say "Please" and "Thank you." Kids are not being taught how to behave in restaurants (and, okay, baby D.J. is still learning), and no one seems to care about just being civil and courteous in public.

A friend of mine has a habit of belching like it's no big deal - no matter where she is. That's so ladylike, don't you think? Her excuse: "It's a natural bodily function. Everybody does it." As if "bodily" means "public" or "in your face."

In a conversation one time I said I thought it was rude for a man or woman to habitually (and loudly) pass gas around each other. I was told I was uptight.  One of the guys said, "It means you are comfortable around someone." (No - it means you don't give a damn. You certainly didn't make that first impression with a belch, did you?)

Maybe I am uptight, but I don't care how "comfortable" I feel with someone, I don't want to just blast out a belch (or whatever) around them. (Okay, wait - let me be totally honest: I will do it around my sister, just to mess with her!) I get it that "stuff" happens. Sometimes, it's cute and playful - like when my ex-husband would hold my head under the covers and threaten me with toxic fumes. Usually though, I try to maintain a level of respect for people. If I do burp, or - you know, do that other thing - I excuse myself (or try to play it off and hope it's' a windy day).

I'm sorry, but I think manners matter. You don't have to be a graduate of Emily Post to understand common politeness. With friends, lovers and family, I'm just not comfortable walking around, scratching my ass or blowing fumes all over them. (Obviously, I have no restraint when it comes to blogging about it all, but...)

My roommate is a chick who has no problem letting it all hang (or blow) out. We talk about it all the time. I harp on her the way my mother harped on me: "You'll slip up and do it in front of someone special."

We may be dysfunctional in a lot of ways, but my siblings and I are still courteous to one another. In public, my brothers treat me and my sister like the ladies we are. Of course, they will kill for us, but they also hold doors and walk on the outside of the sidewalk. (Then again, I have awesome brothers. Most of the time. Not that they don't give us a lot of sh*t.) My mother raised us to be this way. I don't know how I would feel if a man in my family didn't hold a door for me or treated me like I wasn't a lady.

I probably do sound like a throwback of some kind, but, oh well. I'm the woman who will not, for the first months of a relationship, let a man see me looking haggard in any way. (I'm still haunted by the nightmare I looked when I was in the hospital a few years ago: hair all jacked up, lips chapped and peeling... I don't even want to know what I smelled like after not being able to bathe for days. Ugh!) When I'm in a relationship, I keep two things on the bedside table: baby wipes for my face and a swig of orange juice for my morning dragon-breath. And men don't seem to have the same ideas, but I like being a woman. I think little things like that matter.

Yeah, so, let's get back to being nice people, folks.


(* Thanks, +Evelyn Blandino. My fingers were moving faster than my brain!)

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

G+ (2013) vs Facebook (2011)

I'm a big promoter of Google Plus. I'm as big on revealing my hatred for Facebook.

Google Plus is just a better fit for me. I like to talk to a variety of people about a variety of ideas. I don't want to simply sign in and check up on who has the coolest sayings or the day, the best motivational (or de-motivational) posters, or deepest proclamations of faith or love or- whatever.

While I love my interactions on G+, I've gotten a little bored with it lately. I'm starting to see a Facebook mentality creep in. A couple of years ago, I could be guaranteed to see serious discussions of news and culture. Lately, I see a lot of people just spouting off about meaningless crap. No offense to my circles (because you guys are awesome), but I'm not finding a whole lot more of your kind.

I've been offline a lot since I've had such chaos in my personal (offline) life. Hah! When I logged on earlier this morning, I scrolled through the list of people who've been adding me to their circles. I ended up spending about 20 minutes just "dismissing" all the folks with no image or tagline. I spent another chunk of time getting rid of the self-promoters, businesses, motivational speakers and avid self-photographers who want everyone to know just how hot & photogenic they are. (I won't even mention all the folks using G+ to hook up with someone - anyone.)

Guess what? I still haven't found but a handful of folks to circle back.

Where are all the people who are fun and interesting and conversational and knowledgeable about something they're not selling or talking-up?

One of the first people I ever added on The Plus was +Fraser Cain (publisher of Universe Today). I'm certainly no rocket scientist (or scientist of any kind), but I get turned on to some of the most interesting things from checking Cain's stream.

I've connected to people who I stay in touch with via email and their blogs. I have established online friendships with people who share interests with me (as bloggers, writers, fellow immune disease sufferers) and would be fun to hang out with if we ever met in "real" life.

There are some folks on G+ who have no clue who I am, but are generous enough to share their art and music with the rest of us.

Maybe I'm selfish (okay, that's been established), but I don't want to just "sit" on a network and watch it stream by. I like learning and connecting and getting something out of the experience.

So... I'm going back over to my "People" list again to see if there aren't at least a few I'll be excited about adding back. Else, I might as well have stayed on Facebook. I couldn't even type that without a shudder of repulsion going through my body. Speaking of being repulsed, did you know that there is still a MySpace. It wasn't bad before, if it was your kind of thing, but now... I don't even see what the point is. (Just my opinion, people. Please don't hate me for it.)


Monday, September 09, 2013

Kids. They Kill Me.

Thought about this after I posted some video of D.J. the other day: kids are way smarter than we adults might think.

D.J. is now old enough to concentrate for more than two or three minutes at a time, count (a little), tease people and do just the most embarrassing things at the worst possible moments in time. The one thing that bothers me is that he is just too smart about the wrong things.

If one of us adults starts to count, "One...," he says, "Tewwww." Kills me every time. (We haven't gotten him to say "Three" yet, but he will try to hold up that many fingers.) The other day, his mom wanted to dress him and he didn't want to be dressed. When she reached over to grab his arm, he snatched away and told her, very clearly, to "Go 'way!" This is a kid who can't say "Three"?

My sister gets upset whenever she sees him doing something like dancing along with Sid the Science Kid (or whoever that little purple guy is). She feels like, if he can dance and sing along with a TV show, he should be able to get out the first couple words of The Lord's Prayer. (She's working on teaching him the beginner's prayer of  "Now I lay me down to sleep". He's not co-operating.)

I may have already told how D.J. responds when I get to the house and stomp my feet on the floor (he stomps his, screams and comes flying to leap into my arms), but I'm kind of ashamed to say that his parents think I'm teaching him to be loud and unruly. Okay, so I am doing just that, but what the hell else are aunties for?

So far, my favorite thing about D.J. is that he is sweet. If he loves you, he can wrap his arms around you and make the sun shine on a cloudy day (and did I just steal a line from The Temptations???). Even though he can't yet say my name right, I don't really mind because I love the way he screws it up. "Tewwy." Yeah. Isn't that just the sweetest thing in the world?

I said that he's sweet because he is, but he has not one ounce of empathy in his little Saggitarian heart yet. I tried the old fake cry gimmick to see what he would do. What he did was just about fall over yawning.

No special reason for this post, except that I swore to myself that I would post something at least once a week. When there's nothing else interesting, I will always have D.J.


Saturday, September 07, 2013

The Sweetest Little Man in My Life

Whenever I go offline, some of the people in my different networks miss me. All of the people in my networks miss my little nephew, D.J.

So, especially for +Bill Brown and Miss Marla and +J.D. Hughes, here's a usual moment in the life of that kid of ours.

(Sure hopes one of these formats play for you guys.) This is D.J. helping his Auntie with her wheelchair:

He just adores my big sis, Auntie Mike (second to me, of course). I don't know where the kid gets so much strength, but he can actually push Mike around in her wheelchair. Notice how sweet and helpful he is! His next favorite thing is to help his mom put away groceries. He likes to carry the heavy shopping bags for her from the garage door entrance and into the kitchen so she can put things away.

Have I said before just how much I love this kid? We have a thing we do whenever I show up over there: I stop inside the front door and stomp my feet so that he knows it's me. He screams and stomps his feet and comes running to jump into my arms. I won't be able to catch that solid load of baby-body much longer!

So, just in case you wondered how I get through a bad day or mood... I just take a little dose of D.J. (Almost makes me wish I'd had kids when I could.)


Sunday, September 01, 2013

Saved by Ice Cream

Did I mention that I recently screwed up my 7 month smoke-free streak?

Yeah. When I eff up, I eff up with top marks.

So, now I am popping Chantix twice a day, which helps with the nicotine cravings but does not a damn thing for murder cravings. (I won't get on a rant about this, but my roommate makes me consider trading in the contents of my closet for a jumpsuit stamped "Property of County Jail.")


I'm such an oral person that if I'm stressed, I have to smoke a cigarette, chew a straw, drink anything fit for human consumption, or eat. Since I am finally getting my sexy back, I sure as hell don't want to go on an eating rampage. I don't even want to eat too many carrots or celery sticks because, eat enough of that negative-calorie stuff, a positive pound or two is going to slap itself onto my waist.

The thing is, when I stress, I don't crave salty the way I did when I was younger. Hormones or God's sense of humor has changed my body. Stress these days sends me running for the cookies, donuts or ice cream. The sight of a cookie turns me into a glutton. I don't do donuts in singles. Ice cream, though... Ice cream is a frenemy. I love it, but I have sensitive teeth so I can only do small amounts.

You don't know how happy I was to see this at Walmart a couple weeks ago:

This is the sh*t.  It's like Freezer-Aisle crack.

90 calories. It's just the right amount of heaven to keep me sane for a day. I swear, if I could, I'd marry one of these bars. Except that would make me one of those people who suffer from O.S. As if I don't have enough issues (that I told y'all about) to make someone resurrect Freud.

At any rate, I am trying to get my health act back together. Between the Chantix and the Snickers, I should be completely sane and mostly healthy within another month. So far, I'm still losing weight, and I'm hoping that my recent success with that doesn't slow down when the nicotine leaves my bloodstream. First-world problems, huh?

This is my life.