Please CLICK HERE to sign up for email updates from Emtnester.


Tuesday, March 31, 2009

My Random Man Crushes are Intellectuals

Having a crush on a person you have never met is, of course, rather silly. The infatuation is based on what we see or hear coming from their mouths, even if they are just well-rehearsed lines. What I find more interesting is people's choices of WHO they crush upon and why.

Joining Keely, The Un-Mom, here are some of my random thoughts on crushes:

While most people (men and women) have crushes on hotties like Brad Pitt, he does nothing for me. Okay, almost nothing.

I tend to fall for really intelligent men who can also be a smartellic.

Take William F Buckley, Jr. I fell for him in is is holding a book and all, but look at that expression.

I used to love his show when he would rip some poor fool apart with his knowledge on a particular subject. This is the look he would make right before the kill:

He really had great body language. Agreeing with a lot of what he said moved the crush along quite nicely.

I always wanted to be the lady that walked into his office and say something brilliant, offer my hand and then walk away.

How weird is that?

My two new crushes, you guessed it: David Brooks and Paul Krugman.

Don't you think David looks like that adorable actor in The Christmas Story movie?

Every time I see him the TV I think about their similarities. Take a look:

So cute. He even has that same little chuckle and they are always up to something. But I think he's at his cutest when he's serious and nailing an argument. and he knows it.

This is the look I love:

Finally, and admittedly, this is a little off-the-wall, but I noticed that when Paul Krugman gets all smarty-pants on the air, his ears start to curve out a little. Go see for yourself, he's on every channel as the one person who is challenging little Timmy's plans. The media are having field day with him, but I find him adorable. And I don't ever like beards.

Watch the ears......

And Paul, I double dare you to shave the beard.

Labels: , , , , ,

Friday, March 27, 2009

I Want Five Referrals for Rim 2 Rim- Employee Benefits

Rim2Rim benefits
Chris Kuene
office: 602-354-5377
toll free 800-850-8466

(Tell him the Emtnester sent you!)

Labels: ,

The Best Side Effects of the UltraClear Plus Detox Program

It's the sixth day of my detox/cleanse and I must say, I am not feeling the euphoric feelings so many other people have described after a week. Maybe that happens today and tomorrow. I have enjoyed the bizarre nature and content of my dreams. I jump into bed at 9 pm and am upset when the alarm goes off at 6 am, as anything can and does happen in dreamland...........

Last night I was extremely intelligent and was solving serious technical problems for a "NASA-like" company in Prague. It was kinda cool, because all these 30-year old geeks with dark hair and dark clothes were hanging on my every word. They were amazed that I had picked up their language in just two weeks; yes, sometimes the dream was not in English, (which freaked the real me out, as I couldn't understand that part and there were no subtitles). We had dinner in a castle.......

(This is the real Prague Castle)

with tall candles lighting the room. It seemed like a company retreat as we were all staying there that evening. I sat next to a young couple, recently married, to my left and a man from Capulte, just outside of Prague on my right (I Googled it this morning and there is no such town near Prague).

(This is a real restaurant in Prague, called Bily Konicek)

We were apparently staying in the same suite together which didn't seem odd, except for when we were in bed and the girl became "Susan" from the Desperate Housewives show ("Susan": Teri Hatcher is in the middle)..........
and she was acting like a prude and didn't want to do a threesome or a foursome. I got miffed or embarrassed and said something intelligent and left the room. Then, the alarm went off and I was back in Scottsdale, AZ, USA, with just my above average level of intelligence.

I wonder will I'll be tonight?

Dr. Keith Smigiel had mentioned that several of his patients had experienced unusual dreams while detox/cleansing. Maybe your mind is free to dream better once the toxins are removed from you body. (Warning: This is the less intelligent Beth speaking now).

And maybe Keith did not tell me about how during the first part of the week you are not thinking about sex at all but the last few days, that's all you think about. Not eating or drinking alcohol is hard enough, he probably wants his patients to have a pleasant surprise at the end of a difficult cleansing week. I have to tell you, it is helping me get through these last few days.

And going on the Internet searching for the places of your dreams, has been interesting, too.

Labels: , , , , ,

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

What's a Little Self-Linking Among Friends?

To follow the Detox story, head right now to my Drastic Measures page. You want a link instead of having to go up to the top of the page and click? That's so silly! But I love ya, so it is: click here.

Oh, to be small again. Well, I would settle for a ten-pound drop.....

Labels: ,

Do You Detox?

I am warning you now that all my posts may more weird than usual. This is because I started a UltraClear Plus detox program on Sunday, with the goal of losing some weight. Check out the post here and every day this week on my 'Drastic Measures' page. Luckily, no one has gotten killed yet. But there's still 5 days to go. Help this empty nest woman stay on the this program! Tomorrow's green bean day, just in case you are wondering.

Labels: , , ,

Friday, March 20, 2009

Lady Beth...In Waiting

Just when I thought I was getting the hang of being an empty nest woman who is aging gracefully, I open up an email this morning and find out I apparently have to change a lot of my bad habits before a proper lady can bloom! The Women Company has put together a list of the top ten things a lady should not do in public. It's sort of a comeback to the riveting list wrote this week. Who knew that men shouldn't pick their noses or "pee conspicuously" in public?

Listed below are the ten things a lady should not to do in public and my thoughts and responses:

1. Apply Full Make-Up
I do not do this, not because I am a lady. I am just too lazy to put all my make-up in a bag and carry it to the car to put it on. Maybe, there's hope for me after all......
2. Adjust Your Skimpy Underwear
Well, they weren't skimpy when I bought them! Either they shrank in the washer or I grew. So, handling uncomfortably positioned undies all day makes you a lady, hmmm...
3. Sit Cross-Legged While Wearing a Skirt
I know this one. But honestly, this feels so unnatural. It feels like you are in a Pilates position and are waiting to be released. I get it, to be a lady we must endure uncomfortable positions for extended amounts of time.

4. Show Off Your Midriff
This one is easy. I would not want to ruin one's day by presenting my cortisol-enriched belly in public.
5. Talk on Your Phone in a Public Bathroom or Dressing Room
I do not talk on the phone in a bathroom or during meetings which usually, I get the response, "you never answer your phone"! So, no matter what, a lady is wrong...right?
6. Ask Your Partner or Spouse If They Love You
I am hearing conflicting messages here: therapists have told me in the past that I should be assertive and proactive with my spouse and if I want to hear the words "I love you", I just need to ask him. To be a lady, and if I am married to a guy who is not prone to saying sweet nothings in my ear, I should accept that fact and not hear those fantastic three little words ever again.

7. Tweeze Errant Hairs or Pop a Pimple
Thank goodness for me, my hairs are not errant! And I never really did get pimples. Do you hear "Lady Beth"?

8. Criticize Your Partner or Spouse
Okay, now I am so screwed. So to be lady I need to take all the fun out of life and not criticize poor old hubby? Come on, where's the sport?

9. Adjust the Girls
"Girls" are boobies, FYI. (Aren't they clever?) I was really shocked at this one. So, when one of my larger than normal breast pops out of the cute demi-cut bra I bought just last week, I am supposed to just let it hang out? This might take a little getting used to, especially in a white top! But, I really want to be a lady, so there will be no future adjustments in public from now on.

10. Pee All Over the Toilet Seat
Okay, I should tell you that they go on to say, you CAN pee all over the seat, you just have to clean up after yourself. Phew! This was going to be a hard one until I read the fine print!
Luckily for all of us, lists like this exist so we can prefect our behavior. I am off to start a proper ladylike day. I think I'll wear a navy blouse!

Labels: , ,

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Changing One's Pace of Life

(Picture taken by my daughter, Laura)

I am finding that the old saying, "When it rains, it pours" has a lot of validity these days. It's as if my 'life button' is like the knob on a spinning bike and it skipped the quarter jump in speed and was turned 180 degrees. And I do not seem to be the controller of my own life knob. It's turning without my blessing or approval or even a simple debate as to which speed I should be going. Maybe it's fate. Maybe, secretly or very deep down, this is the speed at which I want to live my life for the next cycle. Yet, there is considerable trepidation on my part. Parts of me just want to hover under a huge, golf umbrella and let the rain pass. Other parts of me has already put on my rain boots, ready to run and play in the pouring rain. I must say, it is all a little confusing.

Some ways that tell me it's time to change it up and live life at a faster pace:

  • New ideas pop into my head all day long. I will have lunch with people from a company and suddenly I have a fantastic idea for their website and how they can increase their membership for very little cost to them;

  • I get excited about new job prospects and crave the intensity that certain careers demand;

  • I take on too many writing assignments and need to stay up late to get them finished;

  • My heart is racing (not in an unhealthy way) and I can feel the adrenaline flowing through my veins;

My resistance to this new pace is as follows:

  • I worry that I will miss the relaxed time I spend with my dog and neighbors;

  • When I used to work for my past employer, I would jump in and be 110% devoted to my projects and the company. Sometimes, my family and the housework, etc would get neglected.

I am just going to have to monitor what is going on and make sure to take care of all those people around me. These are exciting times, if not a little scary. Wish me luck.

Labels: ,

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

The Empty Nester Pub Crawl

It's 9:00 am in the morning, here in sunny Scottsdale, AZ and what a lovely day it is. My wee puppy (now 85 pounds) had his morning romp with the 'goldens and the poodles', took a dip in his pool and has fallen asleep on the floor next to my desk. So, what's an empty nest Mom supposed to do on St. Patrick's Day? I hear "Pub Crawl" don't you?

I'll update this post as the day goes by.

First stop, Bill's office for some delicious Irish Coffee made by Bill's boss. (He makes the best Irish coffee this side of the Atlantic). Talk to you soon.........................
Best Irish Coffee. Ever.

Here is the master. Larry also happens to be one of the best people on this planet. Bill has been lucky enough to work with him for the past 17 years. They are family.

Roberta has stopped by to to a pub crawl with the group. Isn't she adorable? Seriously!

Becky works at Taro with Bill and used to work with me and Roberta at Troon. It's all very incestuous. Isn't she adorable? Best hair ever.
This is Larry's wife Cathi. Yes, I know. Adorable. And smart. And funny. And raises chickens and grows vegetables. She's amazing.

(No pictures of Bill or Ray yet. They are also adorable!)

In case you are just figuring this out, YES, I am a happy drunk.

It is now 10:56 and it's time to move on. To an Irish restaurant for some lunch........

(Okay, if you are in the area and at a fun bar or Irish event, call my cell and I'll come join you!)

In case you are wondering, these people are not blurry! I, however, am a little blurry!

Talk to you soon....

Next stop is the Skeptical Chemist, located in North Scottsdale. Lots of fun people, lots of people-watching. A great band, but not Irish music. What a bummer. We did meet the band members:

I think Becky's got things covered. But he got real interested when this person showed up:

Don't they good look together? We took this picture and never saw him again.

This is Becky and Ray.Here is adorable Kelly and new friend, Shawn:
And finally, Bill and me and a cactus:
Going home in a ride makes the evening so much better:

The evening was just staring for so many people. We are home to feed the wee little pup and go to sleep ourselves. Happy St. Patrick's Day to everyone. I hope you had a good time!

Labels: , ,

Monday, March 16, 2009

Facebook: Everybody Has One

This post is going to be ridiculously short as I will be spending the rest of the afternoon making my Facebook account. Apparently, I am the last person on Earth without such an account and I have been told that I need to get one ASAP. My daughter said if I want any more pictures from her, that I will need to get this account. My friends who don't know how to blog, have a Facebook account. My tax accountant has a Facebook account. These guys at the brand new Cook County Correctional Facility in Chicago, probably all have Facebook accounts:
I must join the land of the living and get my own Facebook account.

As I am as tech-challenged as they come, I welcome any and all advice about Facebook (what not to do, tricks-of-the-trade)...that sort of thing would be most helpful.

So,'re it! That's not how to tag a person? Boy, do I have a lot to learn.

PS: Spellcheck does not know "Facebook" yet, either!

Labels: ,

Friday, March 13, 2009

There is no better day than Friday the 13th in the Southworth house. And a March 13th on a Friday has even more special meaning. As it was this day seventeen years ago that Bill took a chance with the single, divorced older lady that also happened to have three small children.

I should start back 18 years ago when I first met Bill. We met at an after hour work event/happy hour. He was roommates with our marketing director and was invited to join us for a few drinks. As luck would have it, the only available seat left was the one next to me. He started to tell me a fantastic story about what was going on at his workplace. He was interesting and paying attention to me. Now, while two years have lapsed since my divorce to my first husband (also a Bill), I hadn't been out of the house much. Having a one year old, and a 3 and 5 year old can really cramp your style, if you know what I mean. But I also had a great divorce. Bill # 1 took the children every other weekend and one night a week. He was always wonderful to the kids and even if he hadn't been that way, that was the "story" was I had planned to write for my family. I was not prepared to give up my fairy tale life even if that life had a very different ending.

Midway through the evening, Bill #2 and I were still engrossed in conversation but another woman in our office had set her sights on this Bill and was giving me the evil eye. I took notice and (gave-up) said my good-nights and left. I had a babysitter to pay.

Skip forward one full year: It was late in a local "Cheers-like" bar in Scottsdale. I was there with a girlfriend for a charity event. Sounds noble and all, but actually we were closing the bar and the charity had ended hours earlier. And there he was, exiting the bar at the exact same time! It was if one whole year had never occurred and we struck up a conversation. He told me that a big group of people were planning to go skiing in northern Arizona next weekend and would I like to go. (Think fast, it Bill #1's weekend? Yes, thank goodness!) I calmly said "yes" while trying to hold the poop in my pants. (Not really)

As the week went on, Bill called me several times. First, Bruce and Maureen cancelled. Then Shawn and date backed out. Finally, two other couples told Bill they couldn't come because their babies were feeling ill. Talk about awkward. We are heading up on a first date, all by ourselves on a ski weekend. Now I had not spoken to many male adults for two years and now I had to come up with stimulating conversation for the 4 hour drive to the mountains, then stay in a huge condominium with a guy I barely knew. And to top it off it was March 13th...Friday the 13th!

All my worries dissolved as I took on a "what-the-hell" attitude and relaxed. We stopped on the trip and played pool and ate gigantic cheeseburgers at some local joint along the way. We skied all day and had fun, fantastic evenings (what? thought I'd tell you all the details!!) Bill brought some of the best wine I have ever had on the trip and to this day, we enjoy drinking lots of wine.

Well, I am here to say thank you to Bill (and all the other partners out there) who take a chance and date someone that may not seem like the perfect mate. After dating for 13 years, we finally got married, in Hawaii. Aloha Friday seems just so appropriate. Here's to the next 17 years!

Labels: , ,

Thursday, March 12, 2009

More Bank Trouble

I found this comic on a blog site that I like called amyoops. Do you remember when banks were like sacred institutions? Remember in the Mary Poppins movie and the Father dresses the kids up and it's a really big deal to go and place their money in the bank? Seems like all that has changed, at least for the next decade or two.

Labels: ,

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

The Airline Survival Kit

My daughter and her college friends will be heading back to school in a few days, flying across country to return to school. When they arrived, several had a cold and some had runny noses. In just a few days, they are all feeling much better. But I worry about them sitting on the plane next to some person that's going to sneeze all over them, without the least little attempt to cover his mouth and they will get sick again.

It seems that just about everyone who flies is sick and has a burning desire to share his sickness with everyone around them. Maybe the airlines are giving discounts for those who can prove they have a fever or a bad cough, when purchasing their tickets. It does seem that way. I fly Southwest often and they have an open seating policy. So, I literally walk the aisle checking for signs of a cold: bloodshot eyes, runny nose, rosy-cheeked, then avoid sitting by them. Of course, most airlines have assigned seating and you just know you are going to be screwed.

Now, I do not get sick...ever. Just ask my kids. I WILL it away. It's true: I believe you can will away about 90% of all sickness; the other 10% you have no control over. But my kids think my philosophy is nuts and so they DO get sick. For this reason, I put together my airline survival kit for my children to use, to avoid catching an airline cold. Teach your children to practice these few items in the "kit" to avoid the airline cold:

  • Try to separate the other people from your children. If we were not taking every seat in a row, I would always take the middle seat. A little discomfort on the flight is well worth not sleeping the whole vacation being up with a sick child.

  • Take towelettes and once everyone is settled in their seats and buckled up, have everyone wipe their hands clean. Offer one to the sick traveler as well.

  • When the sick person blows his nose at you or sneezes without covering your mouth, have everyone on cue yell, "Ouhee" or maybe "that's so gross". You are trying to embarrass the person as badly as you can. Have your youngest say, "aren't you supposed to cover your mouth when you cough"? You answer in your most polite, Grace Kelly voice, "yes, dear...that is correct".

  • If the person continues his rude habits, ring the bell for the flight attendant. Again in your gentle voice, ask if you are sitting in the "sick section" of the plane. Tell her/him that if that is so, you and your family would like to be relocated.

  • Order a glass of wine, pull out a book and ignore your children at this point. I am a firm believer that if you want your children to be quite and maybe even fall asleep, you should not make the flight seem exciting and wonderful. Bring their quiet, dull play items, including a book. Nine times out of ten, my children would be lulled to sleep and still to this day, they sleep well on plane trips. This also doesn't allow the sick ones to communicate with your children.

That's it. Simple but works every time. I wonder if my daughter remembers this simple points and if she will teach her children how to avoid the airline cold, too?

Labels: , , ,

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

50 Days in Office:I am Scared and Angry

The mind of an empty nester is really quite fascinating. This morning, I am flipping between the joy of having 4 freshman college students visiting for spring break and the frustration of having a pathological narcissist serving as our President. But wait, shouldn't it be the other way around?...shouldn't the girls be frustrating me by acting wild, demanding and self-centered and the President acting prudent, responsibly and not spending my future grand kids money so freely? My world seems upside down or maybe, sideways.

Yesterday, my daughter and her friends invited me to tag-along on a visit to the town of Sedona. I love Sedona and always welcome showing this spectacular place with out-of-town guests. (Pictures to follow later on today...every one's still sleeping to grab their cameras and share the pictures) If America's youth is anything like this group of girls, then this country has absolutely nothing to worry about. They are:


These attributes may be due to excellent parenting. But they are also:

Good schooling, perhaps. I would like to think that they represent the majority of youth today. You know....the ones we never hear about on the news or on TV reality shows.

On the other hand, I read an email this morning discussing the findings from Sam Vaknin a psychologist who is one of the leading experts on narcissism (and author of 'Malignant Self Love'). He describes President Obama this way:

"I must confess I was impressed by Sen.Barack Obama from the first time I saw him. At first I was excited to see a black candidate. He looked youthful, spoke well, appeared to be confident - a wholesome presidential package. I was put off soon, not just because of his shallowness but also because there was an air of haughtiness in his demeanor that was unsettling. His posture and his body language were louder than his empty words. Obama's speeches are unlike any political speech we have heard in American history. Never a politician in this land had such quasi "religious" impact on so many people. The fact that Obama is a total incognito with zero accomplishment, makes this inexplicable infatuation alarming. Obama is not an ordinary man. He is not a genius. In fact he is quite ignorant on most important subjects." ......."Barack Obama appears to be a narcissist." ....."or he may have narcissistic personality disorder (NPD)".

The email explains, 'When you are a victim of a cult of personality, you don't know it until it is too late. One determining factor in the development of NPD is childhood abuse'. "Obama's early life was decidedly chaotic and replete with traumatic and mentally bruising dislocations," says Vaknin. "Mixed-race marriages were even less common then. His parents went through a divorce when he was an infant (two years old). Obama saw his father only once again, before he died in a car accident. Then his mother re-married and Obama had to relocate to Indonesia, a foreign land with a radically foreign culture, to be raised by a step-father. At the age of ten, he was whisked off to live with his maternal (white)grandparents. He saw his mother only intermittently in the following few years and then she vanished from his life in 1979. She died of cancer in 1995".

Then it goes on to say, 'One must never underestimate the manipulative genius of pathological narcissists. They project such an imposing personality that it overwhelms those around them. Charmed by the charisma of the narcissist, people become like clay in his hands. They cheerfully do his bidding and delight to be at his service. The narcissist shapes the world around himself and reduces others in his own inverted image. He creates a cult of personality. His admirers become his co-dependents Narcissists have no interest in things that do not help them to reach their personal objective. They are focused on one thing alone and that is power. All other issues are meaningless to them and they do not want to waste their precious time on trivialities. Anything that does not help them is beneath them and do not deserve their attention........If an issue raised in the Senate does not help Obama in one way or another, he has no interest in it. The "present" vote is a safe vote. No one can criticize him if things go wrong. Those issues are unworthy by their very nature because they are not about him'.

To further ruin my day, it said, 'Narcissists are often callous and even ruthless. As the norm, they lack conscience. This is evident from Obama's lack of interest in his own brother who lives on only one dollar per month.....A man who lives in luxury, who takes a private jet to vacation in Hawaii, and who has raised nearly half a billion dollars for his campaign (something unprecedented in history) has no interest in the plight of his own brother. Why? Because, his brother cannot be used for his ascent to power.........A narcissist cares for no one but himself. This election is like no other in the history of America. The issues are insignificant compared to what is at stake. What can be more dangerous than having a man bereft of conscience, a serial liar, and one who cannot distinguish his fantasies from reality as the leader of the free world? I hate to sound alarmist, but one is a fool if one is not alarmed. Many politicians are narcissists. They pose no threat to others...They are simply self serving and selfish........Obama evidences symptoms of pathological narcissism, which is different from the run-of-the-mill narcissism of a Richard Nixon or a Bill Clinton for example. To him reality and fantasy are intertwined. This is a mental health issue, not just a character flaw. Pathological narcissists are dangerous because they look normal and even intelligent. It is this disguise that makes them treacherous......There is no insanity greater than electing a pathological narcissist as president'.

His head is not in the right place, if you ask me. No telling where his heart is. I want to believe that he truly wants to help this country and simply has a different approach than I would use. But old mind wanders back to the college girls......

Our youth deserves better than we are setting them up for with these massive spending bills and slow-growth proposals. Whether it all gets passed by the stalwarts in Congress, we had better make it up to these kids some day in the future. Simply put, they deserve better.

Labels: , , ,

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Typing 101 and the Ideal Secretary

This post is not going to have falling off your chair laughing or bring up a political point that is so new and relevant that you immediately Twitter about it, but what just happened to me several minutes ago seems worth writing about.

I am on the computer about four hours a day now, writing, reading blogs or generally wasting time. When I make a comment on some one's blog, I painstakingly type using two or three fingers; the rest of the fingers are dead weight. I have to look at the keyboard, too. That is until now. I was reading an email and responded quickly because for once I had a "funny" comeback and I didn't want to forget it. All ten fingers burst into action and for about three minutes, I typed without looking at the keyboard even once. I typed the whole thing like some glamorous secretary would from the 1970's:

Apparently, some people must have a thing about secretaries, because most of the pictures out there are all sexed-up versions of what I envision when I think of a secretary.

This is the picture that comes to mind...I can hear her saying, "one ring-a-dingy" as I type.

But I would totally believe this secretary if she told me she couldn't help me at the moment because she was all tied up....

And, after viewing this picture, I will always be a little worried if I hear a secretary tell me she will bend over backwards to get the project done for me! I think I'll tell her to relax and to take her time.

I don't get the whole sexy secretary thing, I'm just glad to know that maybe one day, I can type faster and be accurate. No extreme back bends for me.

Labels: ,

Friday, March 6, 2009

Did Girl Scout Cookies Get Smaller or Have I Gotten Larger?

It's Friday morning and I have just come in from walking my dog. I pour myself a cup of fresh-brewed coffee and decide a couple of Girl Scout 'Trefoil' cookies would be a nice accompaniment. But what's this? They shrank the cookies and the box that they came in this year! Now three cookies equate to about 1 1/2 cookies from last year, I surmise. If I had known that, I would have purchased more boxes....

Girl Scout cookies are not supposed to be in my food intake at all, but last week I stepped out of the grocery store and one of my friends' daughters was standing there in her adorable little uniform, selling these tiny boxes of cookies. She could be the poster child for Girl Scouts...she has the most adorable smile and natural good looks and the next thing I knew, I had bought many boxes of cookies. She's polite, too, saying thank you and offering to put my cookies in my grocery bag. It's really not my fault; they should have less attractive and not-so-sweet girls selling the goods if I am going to be able to resist!

Of course, now I don't want to waste food, that would be wrong. So, I ration them to myself. I can have three (don't give me shit...I told you they are tiny!) with my morning coffee and one after my lunch salad.

As I take teeny-tiny bites so the cookies last longer, I begin to feel like this cat:

What if the cookies haven't change at all in size and it's just that I have gotten larger? The horror. I run to that dreaded piece of nasty torture (the bathroom scale) and weigh myself. Arghh! Now I confused and more so than usual. Help a poor, empty nest woman out. Have the cookies shrunk or have I just gotten bigger? Maybe it's both, but either way, this is no way to start my Friday morning out.

Labels: , ,

Thursday, March 5, 2009

An Adventure in St. Lucia

This week's Spin Cycle topic is ADVENTURE! This reminds me of one of my favorite events on a vacation with my sister, so thanks Jen at Sprite's Keeper, for choosing this topic.

Whenever my sister and I plan an adults-only vacation together, we always ask the same question: do we go all out and select the high-end hotel experience or try the next level (or two) down for a different kind of experience? Both can be fun but one is always less money and the other typically brings at least one "surprise element" to the trip. Two years ago, the surprise element was what we loved and remember the most about our trip to St. Lucia.

We selected a medium-priced, delightful place called Ti Kaye with their "romance package". It included a wild boat ride into town on a rainy day which produced my favorite vacation picture of my sis. We got champagne and cheese and crackers brought to our outdoor deck of our villa, which the birds thoroughly enjoyed. But we saved the big adventure for our last evening of our stay. The hotel staff was to pick us up at the beach in a small motor boat and taken out for a large sailboat sunset trip with appetizers and wine.

As is usual, my sister and I traded clothes, shoes and jewelry. She ended up in pink Capri's and a pink and white top that cried out for my pink and white Jack Rogers' sandals. I borrowed a turquoise shirt to go with my white pants. The guys were in shorts and polo shirts and sneakers or dock shoes. We headed down to the beach on a warm, sunny late afternoon.

The guy was waiting with his little boat with two long oars. He had no shirt on and dreadlocks down to the middle of his back. His smile was as bright as moonshine and his eyes were as red as cherries. There was quite a wake as the tide was rolling in. He explained to us how we should hop in two at a time and he would work the boat to avoid the wake splash. Only I think he did the exact opposite. My sister and Scott hoped in and faced the beach and waited for our guide to pull the boat out, waiting for the wave to break. But his timing was off and instead landed the boat right into the wake, and a huge wave came crashing in on my sister and husband! They were sopping wet and Bill and I watched the whole episode standing on the beach. Unfortunately, the camera was tucked away in a bag. We were all laughing hysterically. The local guide was so embarrassed but really I think he was afraid it was going to happen again with the higher waves and all.

It was our turn to get in the boat. We jumped when he told us to, he pulled the boat back and waited for the wave to land on shore and we were sitting in the boat, dry as a bone in a desert. That made us laugh even harder.

We got to the sailboat but they never opened the sail during the trip, and that made us laugh.

There was a stiff breeze and Scott was sitting in his moist shorts the whole time and that made us laugh.

The bottle of wine was delicious but the crackers went flying off the deck and that made us laugh.

(Photo by raijomayo100)

The sunset was bright and colorful and peaceful and we sat in silence and appreciated all that life has given us. We were thrilled to be together enjoying each other's company and we dreamed of doing this kind of trip every year for the rest of our lives.

As we left the boat my sister was walking funny. I asked her if she was alright. She said, "yes, but I think your leather sandals are ruined". To this day, I slip on those loosened sandals and can't help giggling too myself about our little surprise adventure in St. Lucia.

Labels: , , ,

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Create a "Wish List" With Your Partner to Improve the Marriage

As if it's not scary enough this month, (as my husband's company is hopefully finalizing the Chapter 11 paperwork with the court this month), Google Adsense has chosen the ads for my site to all be about trying to sell your foreclosed home! The theme for all NaBloPoMo writers for the month of March is about Giving (Up), so I may start writing about the giving aspects of life and end this month with all the things we will be giving up if the company ends up with a Chapter 7 status instead! I am only thinking positive thoughts right now.

Anyone who has gone through a restructuring of a company knows how difficult it can be: technically and emotionally. For the past year to a year and a half, Bill has along with his co-workers, worked so very hard to make this thing work for all parties who are involved. It has been very emotional, too, because they all get along like a very close, they are a family. Because of what Bill is going through, I don't expect much of anything from him on the home front. Such was not the case when we were thinking about getting married................

We had been dating for quite awhile and were thinking about getting married and we decided to make a list of the things that we wished the other person would do for them, the goal being to strengthen the relationship and maybe results in a great marriage. We gave ourselves a week to put it together and set a time to switch lists with each other. It was a very telling exercise for us and I would recommend that you and your partner make "Wish Lists" if you have not done so already. But, let me warn you, too. What you get back from your partner may not be pleasant or what you expect it to be. Case in point:

My Wish List, for Bill:

(abbreviated for this post as it had over 280 points to it!)

1. Always make me feel like I am the number one person in your life. I don't care how nice you are to other women just as long as I know and they know who's number one in your life. (Yes, all my points were long-winded!).

2. I would like you to give me 3 compliments a day.

3. Please call me when you are going to be coming home later than usual from work.

4. Hug me when you come in the door.

5. Understand that it is hard when you criticize the kids' behavior and not just because they came from my first marriage. I am just touchy and protective with them.

6. Be honest and talkative when I ask you a loaded question, such as, "Do I look fat in these jeans"? But never say I look "fine". That would is like death to me.

skipping a few hundred points.........................

255. Encourage me to exercise when I'd rather sit and watch TV and eat a pizza.

256. When I challenge you on something, don't just give up because you do not like controversy. It can sometimes be fun to debate and argue about various topics.

Blah, blah, blah! After typing some of my list for this post, I cannot help but ask the question:

Why the hell did Bill go through with the marriage?! I would think he would have run, not walked away from this needy, insecure and wordy girlfriend!

Bill's Wish List, for me:

(in totality)

1. Remind me to wear sunscreen.

2. Give him back rubs occasionally.

3. Please be respectful of the way I do things, especially when they differ from the way you do things.

That was it! Either, I am pretty perfect (I prefer this choice), husbands may not take this exercise seriously or some of us just write differently. And I think men and women do this kind of exercise with a completely different approach. It doesn't matter, because I pull this folded-up list out weekly from my top dresser drawer, read his wish list and make sure that each week all 3 points are well taken care of. Giving my husband exactly what he wished for just feels right and I know he appreciates the effort.

Why don't you and your partner find time to make wish lists for each other this weekend. It might even be fun!

(All the photos have been provided by my daughter from her Flickr site).

Labels: , , ,

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

How To Clean the Inside of your Computer

A friend of mine sent me this email and I just thought I should share it with all my blog friends and readers who spend a long time on the computer. Be sure to click on the site given, today:

I have only recently learned that all computer screens on the inside are covered with bacteria, dust, germs, etc. that can be dangerous to your health. This is caused by a variety of reasons and it can prove to be a health hazard for everyone that uses the computer. Some at the CDC in Atlanta have recently said that this problem can be as dangerous as cigarette smoking because of the time that most of us are now spending on computers for work and personal reasons.

As a special present to each of you, I am providing you with the below link Special Program at no cost and safe to you to correct this fast growing potential Health Problem.Click on this link to clean the inside of your screen:

Labels: ,