Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Do You Know

One of the things I love about my husband is that, in addition to his great taste in music, he also has a vast and impressive knowledge of musical cheese.

Last night we were cooking dinner and he started humming a song. It was familiar to me, old, something my parents listened to. What was it? What was it? Then it hit me, and my mouth fell open. That was one of his most impressive - no, his most impressive - foray into the realm of musical cheese.

I said, in awe, "Where did that come from?"

"Someone sent me an email with 'do you know' in the subject line. That song has been stuck in my head for the past 48 hours."


That's my man. I absolutely positively do not know how I can out cheese him on this one. If you are brave, very brave, you can watch the video of the love theme from Mahogany on youtube.

Also, if you are going to be a straight male humming the love theme from Mahogany, you would want to be hot, very hot, in order to pull it off. You can keep humming babe. But, also, if this continues much longer, I am bringing out The Way We Were, memories of the way we were.

Peace Out

Yesterday was just one of those days - one of those days where I wanted to hide under my desk because the powers that be had gone mad and I was afraid that someone was going to start flinging poo. I was seriously even beginning to doubt whether our concert at Red Rocks could level me out. Herein, some observations:

(1) You must put a concert at Red Rocks on your list of places to go and things to do. For those of you who may not know, Red Rocks is an open air concert venue made out of the natural red rock formations in the foothills of Colorado. Supposedly, the rock formation offers excellent acoustics; this, in my opinion, is debatable. It is, however, without a doubt, the most beautiful place you will ever see a concert.

(2) If you see the Sultans of September concert, featuring Michael McDonald, Boz Scaggs, and Donald Fagen, you will not be the oldest person at the concert.

(3) Donald Fagen provides fodder to my theory that all people named Donald are intelligent and nuts.

(4) Red Rocks serves margaritas.

(5) To answer your question, he did "Love, look what you've done to me" from the Urban Cowboy soundtrack. Remember the scene where John Travolta has just cheated on his wife and he is standing in the living room of the other chick's highrise apartment with the giant picture windows and it is dawn and he is staring out at the early morning lights over the skyline of Houston? That rips me up every time. Urban Cowboy - terrible movie. I don't know why I own it and watch it. Actually, yes I do. Texas. There is no Red Rocks in Texas, I will give you that. In Texas, at open air venues, there is always a side event that involves betting on what time the temperature will dip below 100.

(6) In my next life I am coming back as Carey Mulligan, only I am not going to act; rather I am going to be one of Michael McDonald's backup singers. And one of Daniel Craig's Bond women.

Picture of Red Rocks from

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

My bestie belongs to a book club and she asked me to join. I went to the first meeting about a month ago. These ladies are mostly friends and neighbors of my bestie, but I have met them all before at parties at her house.

The book club was strange. I was well aware that there would be no discussion regarding the book. That part was not strange. What was strange was that, for a book club that self professes to avoid discussions of all things literary, there were only two bottles of wine. That would take care of me and my bestie, but what would the other ladies be drinking?

Also, the hostess never turned on the lights. Once it got so dark inside that we couldn't see each other, we moved outside, but she didn't turn on the porch lights either. Problems paying bills? Going green? I do not know.

A few days later, my besties told me that she was sorry that the ladies weren't nicer to me. I get nervous in those developments where all of the houses are the same model, but I was chatty and friendly and I even made them fudge, so I don't know what I could have done differently. I did notice they were all a bit strange, but you can trust me here when I tell you that it was them, not me.

It was my besties turn to host next, but because she is going to be out of town, we all agreed that I would host. Because that date also fell on a birthday of one of the girls, I planned to get a chocolate cake from Keegan, often discussed here. Keegan - the former host of Food Network Challenge that makes the best chocolate cakes ever. His chocolate cake ranks right up there as one of my top three favorite things to eat of all time. Above coffee. Margaritas are still number one. I just realized that two of my top three favorite foods are drinks.

Anyway, I predicted to my husband that everyone would decline the RSVP to book club this month. And indeed they have.

Herein I use my least favorite word after panties - whatever. This Friday my husband and I shall go to Keegan's restaurant and have chocolate cake and champagne and toast to the fact that I am not hanging out with the electricity fearing and wine hoarding Stepford Wives of Colorado. I feel like I just narrowly escaped something.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Turning a Corner

My son is high maintenance. He's not high maintenance like I was. (What? Ironed pillowcases make for a better night's sleep, and my mom loved to iron.) He's high maintenance to the extent that it is impossible to run him out of energy. We once took him on a 6 mile hike that was up a mountain both ways. After the hike, he was cartwheeling to the car. Also, he never ever stops talking and requires constant input.

Sometimes I will go sit in the bathroom for a moment of peace. He will come sit right outside the door and continue talking.

Some days all the activity and talking and input leave me feeling raw. By the end of the day, if my husband tries to touch me or talk to me, I will jump out of my skin.

I thought things would calm down when he got older. Still, at 9, he bounces off the walls. Literally. Sometimes he will just start running with all his might and bounce off the wall. And still, at 9, he narrates his life. Even when he is playing his computer games or watching t.v., he's talking.

But in the midst of it all, he is sweet and smart and funny and empathetic. Nevertheless, I couldn't do it again.

Yesterday, I brought him running with me. This never works. There is much mushroom kicking and stick throwing and tree climbing. Nevertheless, he really wanted to run with me. Okay, I thought, we will try this again.

And he ran with me. We ran fifteen minutes straight without stopping. Just running. My son was running right beside me. Then he had run as far as he could go and was ready to turn around. He reached out for my hand and we held hands and walked through the park - IN SILENCE. We were just walking. Holding hands.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Reese Witherspoon Owes Me

Let's not debate here about whether Wild Horses by the Rolling Stones is a good song. Let's just agree that it is by the Rolling Stones and, therefore, deserves a certain amount of respect. One might be inclined to turn it up if one was listening to the radio and driving around and feeling particularly mellow. It's a fine song for that.

Recently, I caught Fear on cable. It has been several years since I first saw it, and I remember lusting after the real estate in the movie. I decided to watch it again. Fear is a suspense/thriller with a young Reese Witherspoon and Marky Mark. Marky Mark ends up stalking her, but prior to Reese realizing that he is a bad seed, they go to a fair at night and ride a roller coaster. On said roller coaster, Mr. Mark gets to third base with Reese and she has a Meg Ryan deli moment.

All the while, through the whole scene, Wild Horses is playing. This afternoon, when Wild Horses came on the radio at my desk, all I could picture was Ms. Witherspoon having a moment. She owes me big time for that. That is not okay. She also owes my $9 for Four Christmases.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Credit Where Credit Is Due

My son's iTouch stopped working.

And darkness descended upon the universe.

First there were some sobs. Then he threw himself on the floor and began wailing with all his might and pounding his fists. Why, God? Why?

The only thing to do was to laugh at him. But then I remembered the bike incident. When I was about his age, I had a nasty bike accident. I ended up with large, deep skid marks on my upper thigh. Gravel was embedded within my ripped and bleeding skin. I could not stop crying. My mother took me to the ER, and still I cried. The doctor tried to be soothing. "You're going to be just fine," he said. Through sobs I explained, "Have you seen the hole in my Guess jeans?" All was not going to be fine. These were the super rare striped ones with the zipper on the side.

So I tried to be soothing. I Googled "My iTouch will not charge" and followed all the helpful advice, such as "plug it in." Yet plugging it in did not work. We exhausted all possible combinations of plugs and computers, and the iTouch would not charge.

At 10:00 the next morning I was at the Apple store. When a 9 year old wants to play iPeePee, it's best not to delay. Here are my observations:
(1) Doesn't anybody work anymore? Everybody is just hanging out at the Apple store at 10:00 on a Wednesday.
(2) If you are going to buy someone an iSomething for Christmas, I recommend you do it now.
(3) The staff at the Apple store are so friendly. Also, apparently, there is no employee policy prohibiting nasal jewelry.
(4) Most importantly, they will just replace your nonfunctional iTouch. Just like that. What? Yes. If you bought your iTouch within the past year, they will replace it. Get out! The customer service was outstanding. Good for you Apple. Good. For. You.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Gold Shoes Are A Slippery Slope

My mother had a thing for gold shoes. It was so very Dallas and motherly of her. I swore that I would never EVER wear gold shoes.

So, here's a few thoughts while I am wearing my gold shoes . . .

You are on notice here that I sometimes do things that I swear I will never do. Accordingly, please stage an intervention if you ever see me resort to the following:

1. Going to a place of work other than a home office in drawstring pants with a shirt tucked in, thereby accentuating the diameter of my girth;
2. Sporting a muumuu. It is not business attire. Wearing one to work does not make it so; or
3. Trying to be supervisorly while farting and wielding a hand with chipped nail polish.

[My gold shoes, for the record, are very retro and glam. Says me.]

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

My Last Day Practicing Law

Through a friend of a friend, I met the guru at lunch one day. By the end of the lunch, he had offered me a job. The guru is a man who, if you want to practice in this particular area of the law, you do not turn down. Meeting the rest of the firm was a mere formality.

He was eccentric, but it did not matter. After spending some time under his guidance and watching him work, I would be at the top of my game. Although there are many excellent players in the game, he knows more than anybody, hands down.

Shortly after I started to work for him, one of the associates that was helping us got let go. This was quite a shock because, in the opinion of her fellow associates, she seemed to be one of those shooting star types. Nevertheless, if the topic of this girl came up around the guru, he would talk about the faults in her work. It was disturbing and uncomfortable to hear him.

The first year of practicing with the guru was good, if not exhausting. He gave me a great review and one of the other partners commented that he was shocked because this guy didn't give good reviews. Shortly after that, however, things got very bad, very quickly. I couldn't do anything right for this guy. I would have thought I was going crazy if I wasn't working with two other partners who thought I was doing a good job.

Things got so bizarre that I thought it was time to speak to the head of the department, as well as the associate liaison. This was a situation that was beyond what I could handle on my own. Both agreed to speak with me, but kept rescheduling our appointments. This happened over a period of two months, and I was starting to get frustrated. Finally, the associate liaison set up a time to meet with me. She mentioned that the managing partner would be there too.

Part of me knew. But I didn't want to believe. I told myself that maybe they wanted to talk to me about moving to a different department. I tossed and turned the night before the meeting but kept telling myself it was all going to be okay.

As soon as I walked into the meeting, I knew. I could just tell by the looks on their faces. When the managing partner began, "Because of the economy . . .." That was the last thing I heard. I don't recall what else they said. I do recall fighting back, but being told that discussing this wasn't the point of the meeting. The point of the meeting was to tell me that I was laid off. I was one of the first, if not the first. The other associates sat at their desks for the next two days dreading the ring of their phone and hoping it wasn't somebody telling them to come to the conference room.

That was one of the worst days of my life. I cried for about 5 hours straight, and then off and on for the next few weeks. I am glad that I did not know at the time just how hard the following months would be. Things certainly got darker before they got better. The truth of the matter is, no matter what they say, it's personal; when they keep a handful of associates and you are not one of them, its personal.

However, I also remember that day that despite feeling like I just got hit by a bus, I was also relieved that I didn't have to worry about my billable hours.

Later that week, a surviving associate called to tell me that, if it was any consolation, she saw the guru talking to the partners after my meeting and he was a total wreck. Nope. No consolation.

He emailed me later to ask if I wanted to talk. I did. I didn't think it was fair that the other two partners did his dirty work. I wanted him to look me in the eye and tell me why he laid me off. When we met for coffee, he told me exactly why he had put me on the lay off list. I will not say here what he told me. I have a feeling, however, that much like the associate he complained about after she left, he does the same about me.

Monday, September 20, 2010

My First Day Practicing Law

Shortly after graduating with my masters of law, I got a job offer at a boutique law firm downtown. There were four male partners ranging in age from mid-fifties to probably shouldn't be working anymore, and one female associate that was about fifteen years older than me. I was part of their plan to swell the ranks.

During my interview, the main partner told me that he was impressed that I got straight As in law school and my masters of law program. The truth is, by that point in my law school career, I was very adept at taking law school exams. A law school exam is really just a matter of being able to regurgitate all of your class notes into a cohesive whole under time pressure. In reality, I knew nothing about the area of law for which I was interviewing to practice.

I was nervous and excited as the first day approached. I hadn't really had any law firm (paying law firm) experience prior to that day. During one law school summer, I helped a friend of a friend with a big jury trial and she promised to pay me if she won the case. My consolation prize was a briefcase. The next summer, I clerked for a judge for free. But a real law firm job with a transactional practice, this is what I had been waiting for.

I dressed in my black Ann Taylor interview outfit for my first day because (1) I didn't have any money to buy anything new and (2) I didn't know what people would be wearing. And I brought my briefcase because this was BKS (before my Kate Spade collection). I had nothing in my briefcase but a pen, my drivers license, and a Power Bar, on the off chance that they weren't taking me out to lunch but how ridiculous would that be because of course they would be taking me out to lunch.

I arrived at the firm before any of the other attorneys, but the office manager was there and she showed me to my office. My office! And it was gigantic. I am not exaggerating when I tell you that it was bigger than my current living room. The offices were on the 29th floor and I had a fantastic view of downtown, the mountains and the sky. Being so high, I felt closer to my mom in heaven.

The office manager then took me down the halls and told me that I could pick out any of the art on the walls for my office. There was a large painting of the grand canyon with blue bonnets, cactuses and a rocky stream. It was pure kitch. It was like the Happy Painter from PBS had been on a happy painting bender. I had to have it. Later, when the partners came by to introduce themselves, they all, every last one of them, asked why I had picked that picture. Apparently, "because it's hysterical" was not the right answer. It was painted by one of the partner's wives.

It took a couple of hours for me to get any work. I spent a good deal of time trying to look as busy as possible rearranging the three things in my briefcase. Finally, the main partner who I was going to be working for came by with my first project. He handed me a partnership agreement that was two binders big - one three inch binder and a second small binder. Prior to that point, I had never actually seen a partnership agreement. And in my next seven years of practicing law, I would never see a partnership agreement quite like it. My task was to go through and determine if there was anything in it that was concerning.


HA HA HA HA HA. Looking back, it was a test. This was the most complicated of partnership agreements ever drafted, it was way over my head, it would be way over the head of most attorneys, and there was no way, given who drafted it, that it was anything but a perfect, beautifully drafted document.

I dug in, swearing the whole time at my partnership tax professor for never having shown us a partnership agreement.

Around 11:30 I started to get hungry and was looking forward to lunch. Noon came and went. Then 12:30, 1:00, 1:30. It became quite clear that nobody was taking me to lunch. Thank goodness I had a Power Bar.

Later that afternoon, the other associate stopped by to introduce herself. Within 5 minutes it was clear she was BITTER. She had put her husband through medical school and he had left her for a nurse and if I remembered anything she told me I was to remember never to let on to the male partners that I had a family because despite what they said they used it against you and that mark her words it isn't easy being a female attorney and if I ever have to leave early because of my son to tell them it was for something else and that her husband had left her for a nurse. Okay then.

I hacked away at the partnership agreement until about 7:00 p.m., went home and had some dinner, then picked it up again until 11:00. I set my alarm for 4:00 a.m. and got back to it. The next morning I got some other projects form another partner, and then more and more projects. The partnership agreement binders sat on my desk for months until the drafting partner came and got them, and their contents were never once discussed. During my first year review the partner asked why I had never said anything about the partnership agreement. I knew in my heart it was a test, and I don't like my time being wasted like that. But I told him I just got busy with other things.

Despite the weird first day with the lack of lunch and The Test, I came to admire the partners of that firm very much and I would say we became friends. I admire them for their incredible knowledge, but also the fact that they are great family men. I never once - ever - felt like they judged me for being a woman or a mom. In fact, it felt like a family there. To this day, even though I now know most of the lawyers in town, I still refer people to them. If I ever need a lawyer, I would want it to be one of them. And I don't think that I am putting words in their mouths when I say they respected me. In fact, I know this because the one who gave me The Test just spontaneously stuck his head in my office one day and said, "You're a good lawyer, you know."

It became obvious that my passion and my strength was in an area of the law that the firm wasn't interested in cultivating. Accordingly, after four really good years, I moved on to another firm.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Dear Anna

Not impressed with this year's September issue. After looking at it, I feel all empty inside and don't quite know what to do with myself.

Here it is . . .

the mandatory fall post.

Fall has officially started in Colorado. This morning, my run took me through fall's first falling leaves.

Now we are off to the sports bar to eat the best wings I have ever tasted (oh its so good to be me) and to watch Virgina Tech play pall (which has been painful as of late). Then we are meeting our friends for margaritas for dinner. I mean, we are having dinner with our friends and there will be margaritas. Oh who am I kidding. We will be having margaritas for dinner. Oh it is so good to be me.

Friday, September 17, 2010

PMSing - Send Cheese Dip

And Salami. Preferably a hard salami, because I am going to use it to dip in the cheese.

Also, this might explain why I cried for a good long time in my cubicle when I found out that Dragon Boy had died. Dragon Boy is the giant lizard that lived at my son's school. They had a ceremony and burial for him in the butterfly garden. What a waste of lizard skin.
Dragon Boy

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Round Up

I realized that there are a bunch of loops that I have never closed here. So here we are . . .

(1) Last Christmas, I blogged about my ex-husband taking his girlfriend of 3 years to Napa and we were all (well, I was and probably she was) thinking that they were going to get engaged. They did not. Her Dances with Wolves name is Large Angry Woman.

(2) The Decision on Margaritas? Deciding to go to law school. That's right. It was after a pitcher of margaritas that I decided I wanted to be a lawyer. (a) Note the impressive follow through! I may be inactive, but I am still a lawyer. (b) I miss Texas. Margaritas should be served in pitchers.

(3) My Dances with Wolves name is Sits In Cubicle. Still. The earliest The Franchise will be open is Spring of next year. We thought we had a primo space in a primo location, but all of a sudden we can't get the landlord's broker to return a call. Please send good space karma.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Pit Bull - O

I was surfing the web for images of porcupines (because, you know, it was Tuesday at noon) and I came across this picture . . .

This is what happens when a pit bull crosses a porcupine. I'm going to go out on a limb and say the porcupine won.
Image from

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Dances with Mousse

My husband got a copy of Dances with Wolves a few weeks ago. Every weekend he comments, "Shall we watch the movie, or would you like to put in Season 3 of Mad Men?"

Apparently there was a question in there somewhere. Anyway, I found this nice true ballet story that I wanted to go see this weekend (Mao's Last Dancer) and all of a sudden he had reached his limit for humoring me. It was time to watch Dances with Wolves. All 4 hours of it. The home DVD is FOUR HOURS.

Earlier that day, I could tell he was getting excited because he started to email me at work about the movie. He asked if I was excited to see the Buffalo. First he contemplated the plural of buffalo. I guess this isn't something they cover in the engineering department at Virginia Tech. It's Buffaloes, of course. Yay SMU!

I wrote him back and told him that I didn't remember the scene where Shoeless Joe Jackson had to pass through buffaloes to get to the corn field. Whereupon he wrote back, "Wrong movie." Then I said I didn't understand how they could keep buffalo on the atolls. And he wrote back, "Wrong movie."

Really? Because I was under the impression that Kevin Costner only ever made one movie, one big long movie.

Considering how much Mad Men that my husband has put up with, I decided to be a good sport about watching Dances with Wolves, and even resolved to stay awake. However, about one-third of the way through, the movie just got ridiculous and I could no longer watch. Stands With A Fist's hair - the hair mousse. I cannot get behind a movie about the Wild West if they expect me to believe that there was an abundance of hair mousse on the plains. That coif, that "hair-style" that Mary McDonnell sported, could only be achieved by a copious supply of mousse. And probably some hot rollers. Those tee-pees didn't even have electricity, and correct me if I am wrong but the cordless rollers didn't come about until much later. Dances with Wolves? Totally unrealistic.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Hottest Blood Draw Ever

In order to get the SBA loan for The Franchise, I had to get life insurance. In order to get life insurance, I had to get a physical. The life insurance company will send somebody right to your house to do the blood draw and get the urine sample.

I was standing on our porch waiting for the blood draw person to arrive (if it's your first time at our house, it's not entirely clear which door to use). While I was waiting, this guy on a motorcycle pulled up. He took off his helmet, ran his fingers through his hair, then asked, "Are you Associate Girl."


"I'm here to do your blood work and get a urine sample."

I usually don't greet people who say that to me with such a big smile.

While he was drawing my blood, I asked him if he was a nurse or a phlebotomists.

"Neither," he said. He paused for effect, then said, "I'm a fireman."

There is a long standing joke in my family about my love for fireman. I do not know where it began (I think it was before Denis Leary, although that helps). Anytime we see one, or even just a truck, my husband asks me if I would like to get out of the car. And here was a real live fireman in my living room!

Then he tells me about how he fights fires and as a side job he does blood draws. And he's really good at it. I am not just saying this, but he gave me the best blood draw I have ever had.

Then he loaded up my blood and pee, got back on his motorcycle and drove off.

Friday, September 10, 2010


My husband took me to J.Crew tonight in an effort to get me out of my funk. I know. I know! He's that good. When the greeter asked us if she could help, he asked her where the boyfriend cardigans were located. Sadly, there were no nice colors (that I didn't already have) so I ended up in accessories.

There I found a headband to wear to work. Because nothing says I take this job very seriously like a handband covered in black and white polka dot feathers.

Next we went to dinner. We are lucky enough to live in the town where Keegan Gerhard has his restaurant. Yes, that guy! The former judge of Food Network Challenge - i.e., the guy who knows how to bake stuff. There I had the Pouffle. The POUFFLE! Isn't that brilliant? It's a passion fruit souffle. I could not resist the opportunity to order a pouffle.

Pouffle pouffle pouffle.

You may now take back all of your comments about my having a discernible grip on reality. But I am happy here on the couch, wearing feathers and full of pouffle.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

On A Positive Note

Because I was such a Debbie Downer yesterday (I hate the phrase "Debbie Downer" almost as much as I hate the word "panties"), I thought I would be more positive today. And because I was down on certain blogs, I thought I would focus on blogs today.

Ergo, here is a list of three really good blogs that sort of fall outside of the usual suspects around here (that is, the posse that originated with Juliet).

1. The Rockstar Diaries -
This family (the couple and their bulldog) are so incredibly adorable. While normally that would turn me off, I really enjoy this blog. It's about their life and eats in and around D.C., and now about their being pregnant. Normally that's about where I stop following a blog, so that's a testament to how much I enjoy it. However, I reserve the right to unfollow if, after the birth, the blog becomes solely focused on the baby. Less baby more bulldog and it should remain stellar.

2. Confessions of a Mother, Lawyer & Crazy Woman. http://http//
This lady is a great writer. She is witty and clever. She is like Jen Lancaster, only smart. (Although, I suspect that Jen Lancaster is a lot smarter than she lets on.)

3. Belle Maison
You know how I say that I love the color orange but that it is not consistent with the style of my home? This lady posted about some vintage orange wallpaper and became my hero. This is by far the best design blog I have found. Every single post, day after day, is full of design ideas that are inspiring.


Wednesday, September 8, 2010

In A Funk. And Mean.

I just can't pretend right now that it's all dappled sunshine and harvest scented candles around here. (Although it is pink and sparkly. The nail lady talked me into an O.P.I. axxium gel manicure using the color Princesses Rule. My nails now resemble some sort of coating most typically found on toys for three year old girls. I swear it did not look like that in the bottle.)

I know this feeling. I'm sliding into a funk. I hate it. My mother is sitting up in heaven (with a glass of wine, or maybe a gin, I have probably driven her to the gin) telling me to get over it already and go buy some new shoes. Perhaps Paolo Nutini is one of her love children.

I hope that I can write about being in a supreme funk from time to time and do so in the style of Dooce or Shauna Glenn. (We learned in advertising class to always compare your product to a better product.) They write about their funks and get over it and make us all feel better when it happens to us.

I hope I am not sounding like one of those bloggers that whines daily and seems to have no discernible grip on reality. Don't you have some blogs that you read out of sheer fascination because the writer seems to be crazy, and I am not talking about in a good way? I like a good nut job blog. I'm talking about blogs that you read and you think, "Wow. Really? You? You have issues. I can't wait for you to prove that to me again tomorrow." And we all end up feeling better about ourselves. Hey. I'm feeling better already.

Anyway, I was feeling like this the other week,

and I basically left such a blogger a comment telling her to get over it. I may have used the words "get over it." Accordingly, if you would like to tell me to get over it, I totally deserve it. And I feel bad, because clearly that blogger has issues. But then again - when you put it out there and beg for comments . . .

I'm not really practicing that love and light thing, huh? Baby steps people. Baby steps.

(picture of the sweet reptile from

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Maybe Xeriscaping Isn't As Ugly As It Really Is

I am not big into gardening (i.e., I do not garden). This is due, in part, to the fact that it is very difficult to grow anything in this dry mountain climate and the fact that the previous owners put down that weed-be-gone tarp over everything.

Here is what I know about that weed-be-gone tarp: (1) It is the perfect environment in which to grow weeds, and (2) It is a pain in the ass to cut through if you want to plant anything.

Because our house is in an area where there is a certain obligation to keep a nice lush garden, and my husband correctly assumed that said nice lush garden was not going to come from me, he hired a landscape guy.

Now my cutesy gingerbread type house is xeriscaped with desert grasses and plants typically found in movie scenes where mobsters have driven people out to the desert to dig their own graves.

Now that I am not practicing law, I have decided to tackle the yard. Fifteen minutes every day. You can do anything for fifteen minutes, right? The yard is starting to looking spiffy all weeded and I am getting inspired. One by one, fifteen minutes at a time, I will dig up the desert plants in our yard and plant real stuff. Oh yes I will.

Until yesterday when I was out doing my fifteen minutes of time and two MICE ran in front of my feet. I honestly thought it was going to be spider or a snake that would end up doing me in. I never expected the mice. So that's it. I'm done. No more gardening ever. We are the ones with the gingerbread house with the cactus landscaping.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Light and Love, Friggin' Light and Love

My husband and I saw Eat Pray Love yesterday. Just like the book, it was both annoying and inspiring. And while I generally don't like adults who pout, Julia Roberts was a good choice for the part.

My husband, who generally likes chick films, had a hard time coming up with much to say about it.

We were both hoping for more scenery of Italy, India and Indonesia, and were disappointed that so much of it seemed like a set rather than location shots. However, this is why I am glad I saw it . . .

For the past two evenings, shortly before signing off to bed, I have received frustrating emails from a lady who I have tried to befriend. I have been warm and welcoming, and have gone out of my way to make sure she is okay. In return, she has taken advantage of me.

Last night, after opening her email and getting angry, I tried to watch a movie. I tried to start a new book. I finished off my glass of wine. I snipped at my husband. Nothing worked to bring me down. I decided to just focus on sitting and breathing. Then I remembered a scene from the movie, which is also one of my favorite parts of the book. When confronted with thoughts of someone she is not at peace with, the main character decides to send light and love out through the universe to that person whenever she thinks of him.

So that's what I decided to do. I just sat there and used all my energy to send this person light and love. There must be something going on in her life for her to be acting this way. However, because sitting on my couch sending out light and love into the universe seemed a little new agey for me, I had to add the "friggin'" because that's what works for me.

"Here's some friggin' light and love lady. Friggin' light and love to you. Friggin' light and love to you." I had to make it mine, but I did focus on the light and love. And I really did start to feel better.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Worst Spellar Award, Fourth Grade is a Cruel Place

Thanks to Juliet who spelled Velveeta correctly in one of her comments to me. I do try to catch that kind of stuff. You have no idea how much time I spent trying to figure out if it was actually Schwetty Balls or Schweddy Balls. But I glossed right over that Velvetta thing.

Here is where I have a confession to make . . .
And also a story about how very cruel teachers can be . . .

I was always out in the first round of the spelling bees in middle school. This one particular day I made it through the first round, then the second, then the third. In fact, I made it all the way to the final round where it was between just me and one other kid. And I won! For the love of God I won the spelling bee. Then the other kid pointed out that it was April Fools Day and didn't I realize it was all a big joke. I had no idea.

After I got over the thrill of winning a trophy (my first trophy ever!), I was pissed off at everyone and especially the teachers for the laugh at my expense.

I've been scarred for life over that.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

WT Fudge Update

Only two (2) dos people tried the Peanut Butter Velveeta Fudge at book club.

Seriously. How can you not want to try that?

Today I am making Schwetty Balls for a BBQ. We'll see if they go over a bit better. I am making Salted Caramel Schwetty Balls and White Chocolate Schwetty Balls. I will try to resist actually calling them that when I had them over to the host, but knowing me . . .

Later Saturday: Cake balls were a disaster. Allrecipes fail.

Even Later Saturday: Everybody loved the cake balls! Someone at the BBQ told me that cake balls are the new cupcake. (We in Colorado are often late to the fads.) I googled cake ball images and there are so many cute things you can do with them. Yipee for cake balls!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

WT Peanut Butter Velveeta Fudge

I just watched Community for the first time, and it was kind of cute. John Oliver is one of my favorite comedians. At the same time, Chevy Chase has fallen a long way, no?

Tomorrow is my first book club. I haven't read the book, but from what I understand there is actually no book discussion at book club; rather, much like bunco from the start of this decade, it's just an excuse for suburban women to drink.

A little while ago I came across a post on Pages, Pucks and Pantry for peanut butter fudge made with Velvetta. I have wanted to try it forever, and book club without books sounded like a perfect opportunity. Paula Deen originated the recipe. Accordingly, it comes as no surprise that the final step in the recipe is to blot the fudge with a paper towel to syphon off some of the excess butter.

I tried a little square myself tonight, and it is fine. Not like fine okay, but fine like a fine wine. I dubbed it White Trash Fudge. What? It's made with Velveeta and two sticks of butter.

Do You Know What's Expensive?

We are so brilliant! We decided to put the franchise in a mall. We'll get all the customers that come to us as a specific destination, and also all the people passing by that didn't know they wanted our product. Yay! Also, no cost for putting in restrooms or furniture. Why doesn't everybody do this? It's so clever.

Oh, this is why - Mall space is RIDICULOUSLY EXPENSIVE. And do you know what they say when you tell them that they are being ridiculous and that you will just go get a better deal at a different mall? They say, "Fine. There's five potential tenants lined up behind you. And good luck getting a spot as primo as the one we are offering you."

Then, after you get over the sticker shock for the price per square foot, you add on common area maintenance (tens of thousands), property taxes and promotional fees. Then you convince your child that they really do want to become an artist rather than go to university.

Of course, we knew that the mall space was going to be expensive, so we researched and asked questions and put the high end of our findings into the business plan. The landlord just game in well over what we had budgeted. And this mall doesn't even have a Kate Spade.

But there is a Nordstrom. Being from Dallas, I have been inclined to call Neiman Marcus the mother ship. With my new found love for Seattle, however, Nordstrom now holds that title. Plus, as far as department stores go, its just better. Where was I? Oh yea - mall space. Expensive.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

The Difference is Passion

I am currently reading The Difference. It's by Jean Chatzky. I really like her. She's the money expert person on the Today Show (or, at least, she was at one time the money expert person on the Today Show. Now I watch VH1 Classic in the morning in the hopes of catching some Steve Perry.) She's all smart like about money things, but it seems like she could be one of your best friends. But not one of my best friends. They will complain to your face about not having any money while sitting at the spa and ordering furniture from the Horchow catalogue. This is, of course, why I love them.

I expected something different from Jean. The Difference reminds me of The Secret. There are also some grammatical and content errors that surprise me. I'm not saying I don't make them here. I know I do. But I'm not holding myself out as Jean Chatzky.

Having been to high school in Austria, I still sometimes think and spell like I am writing in German. Aber, Ja.

Anyway, Jean says that you have to find your passion, and that the riches will follow. Or something to that effect (I couldn't bring myself to finish the book). I have things I am good at, like picking the perfect off-white wall color and cooking shrimp, but those aren't passions.

I DON'T HAVE A PASSION! Do you have a passion? I want a passion.