Sunday, February 28, 2010

Project Monday Update

This is a quick update to my "Project Monday." So far, it's been a success!  So much so, in fact, that I've not had time to keep up on my blogging and reading blogs, but there are only so many hours in a day.  I'll be back to it very shortly. 

My biggest worry was my youngest daughter and she had a very good week last week, so that alone felt like a huge success.   Teenagers have it so hard nowadays.

My second stress was my business and how to grow it so that we can, at the very least, keep making our mortgage payment without me having to find a punch-a-time-clock job.  So I've got my business blog up and almost running.  That's still a work in progress which is why this is a short (and rather boring - sorry) post. 

Then there is my on-going battle with my elliptical trainer.  It sits behind me in my office taunting me everyday.  I got on it last Monday and that was it for the week.  So in that area, there is lots of room for improvement.  But I'm going to do better this week!

And ya know what?  I slept better last night.  Maybe there's something to my "one thing a day" approach.

Did anyone else try Project Monday?

Thursday, February 25, 2010

My Idle Take on Idol's Guys

So here's the gist of last night's show from the judges:  

We don't not want you to be creative and change the songs, just don't not sound too much the same or different from the original.  

Clear as mud. 

Maybe it's just me, but I thought Todrick Hall and Andrew Garcia both did great renditions of their songs.  The vocals weren't perfect, but they should have gotten more props for creativity and bravery.

Speaking of being clear, someone should tell Ellen that telling a guy (Alex Lambert, who, by the way, has a nice sound if he can just get his stage presence together) he needs to become a ripe banana does not give him something to aspire to.  Unless she wants him to stink more.  And unless the banana is a really big one.  Does she even have a frame of reference for that??

I dig Tyler Grady, but he does need to get real.  When the judges told him he needs to change his look, my daughter said, "What do they want, a tophat and monocle?"  Yeah, she said monocle.  This from the girl who can look out our back door during the winter, see water covering every inch of the yard, and use her powers of reason to ask, "Did someone jump in the pool and splash water everywhere??"  Ummm, honey, it's called rain.  But I have to admit I had to ask her what the heck a monocle is.
In case you're wondering, it's one of these:

I just can't let John Park's comments about Shania Twain go by.  How cute was that?  She said all kinds of sweet things about his bottom and his lips in the auditions and last night he pretty much asked her to marry him.  Ya can't blame the guy, heck, I'd do marry her.  She's one of the most beautiful women in music. 

While we are on the topic of beautiful and cute, you gotta love big Michael Lynche.  He's grounded and knows who he is.  I disagreed with the judges and thought he sounded great.  What's not to love about him?

And then there's Casey.  Sexy, sincere, awww-shucks-I-know-I'm-cute-but-just-enough-to-make-me-sexy-and-not-enough-to-make-me-cocky Casey.  Doesn't he just melt your heart, girls?  I loved how every emotion showed in his face.  If he hit a note wrong, or got it dead on, you could have the TV on mute and see it all in his face.  Not that I'd mute him.  I thought he was good - just a little unnerved by Cara.  She tried to say she didn't care what he looked like, but she's a liar.  Dreary called her a cougar.  Pretty soon he's going to be sitting off at his own little judging table by himself.

My favs for the guys:
Andrew Garcia
Michael Lynche
Casey James
Tyler Grady

Happy Idling!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

American Idolatry from the Idle Americans

I know it's Wordless Wednesday, but in case you haven't noticed, I'm an American Idol fan and I can't let Wednesday pass without a comment or two on the week's show.

First thing's first, does anyone else agree with my husband that Ellen looks strikingly like Calvin?  

It's true, right?  

Secondly, Why does Simon always say that a performance is 
"self-indulgent"?  Aren't all artists self-indulgent?  Isn't the point of
creativity, whether it's music, art, or literature, to produce something that speaks to you, in the hopes it will speak to others too?  In the words of  Inigo Montoya, "You keep using that word.  I do not think it means what you think it means."

Thirdly, the judges told Crystal Bowersox that they wanted "more."  Ummm, guys....she sang, played guitar, and blew on a friggin harmonica!  How much more do you want??  She did it all beautifully too, in my opinion.  Charles Barkley would say, "Crystal Bowersox - she rocks, she rocks!"

Here's my favs so far for the girls:
Didi Benami 
Crystal Bowersox
Lilly Scott
Katelyn Epperly
Michelle Delamor

I couldn't find any videos of their performances last night yet.  Maybe after the results show they'll be up.

Happy Humpday!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Project Monday

I hate Mondays.  Not the whole day, really, just Monday mornings.  It's been that way since I was a kid.  I can remember not being able to sleep Sunday nights because I was so stressed about what the week would be like.  Yeah, I was a weird little kid.  Now those sleepless Sunday nights are like this:

I couldn't get this comic to show up bigger, but the punch line is that she says she's having guilt flashes.  That's me.  Only my flashes aren't limited to my kids.  They include the chores I didn't get done over the weekend, the exercise I didn't do, the work stuff I didn't finish, yada, yada.

Mondays are the beginning of the unknown.  Will the week's events put my Sunday night worries to rest, or add a whole new list for next Sunday?

Then I pull up my big girl panties and say to myself, "You self-absorbed twit! DO something about it!"  Because I realize that although unexpected things come crashing down on you out of nowhere happen,  there are alot of things that I do have some control over.  Many of the week's events are going to be as a direct result of my actions - or lack of them. the interest of having better Mondays, I'm going to make a list of the things I worried about last night and do 1 thing each day to improve the situation causing the worry.  I'm calling it Project Monday.  I won't bore you with the details, but I'll post an update Friday.  If I write nothing more about this, then it means it was a total failure and you should forget I even wrote this and don't ask me about it because then you will be pointing out my failure and it will be something else for me to worry about Sunday night.

Does anyone else want to join me in Project Monday?

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Snippets of Intelligence

Hubby worries about inflicting our kids on the world.  They are in their late teens, so they are just dipping their toes into the big sea of humanity and preparing to wade in.  Sometimes they make the most astute and wise statements that I think I have raised geniuses.  And then there are other times.

We were watching "Sherlock Holmes" last night and in one scene was a structure in the background.

The Girl:   Is that the Eiffel Tower? (mind you, it looked nothing like the Eiffel Tower)
       Hubby:   Eiffel Tower??  That's in Paris!
The Girl:   Where are they then?
       Hubby:   They're in ENGLAND! 
The Girl:   I thought they were in Paris.
       Hubby:   You are the exact opposite of Sherlock Holmes.
            Me:    She's Sherlock NOT Home.
        Hubby:   BUAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!  Good one Mama!
The Girl:   Way to boost my self-esteem, mom.
               Me:   Sorry, honey, but if it's any consolation, it's probably hereditary.

Then there is the now famous "2000 year-old bread" conversation.  Well, at least it's famous at our house. 

Hubby and my 19-year old son (who we endearingly call The Boy) were talking about life.

   Hubby:   I'm happy right now.  I've done pretty much everything I've wanted to do in my life.  The only thing I would really like is to own something 2000 years old.  To have something that old, that has been touched by history, that I could hold in my hand and think about all the people over time that might have held it, would be really cool.
The Boy:   You already have something 2000 years old.
   Hubby:   I do? 
The Boy:   Bread.
   Hubby:   Bread?
The Boy:   Yeah.  They had bread 2000 years ago.

At this point, hubby stares, dumbfounded, at our son.  When he recuperates, he lunches into a lecture about thought processes and life and the world, a lecture that was so baffling to our son that the boy came to me later and said he will never again engage in a deep conversation with Hubby while the man is recovering from surgery and on pain meds.

But hubby on the other hand, is a glutton for punishment.  So he retells the story to The Girl.  The Girl's insightful response?

The Girl:  They didn't have bread 2000 years ago.

Oh, I so hope they don't drown out there.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Joy of Joys! My First Blog Award!

Well, sweep the unpaid bills, open files, tax receipts, and cocktail glasses off my desk and muddle through all of that nonsense later...cause right now I have a BLOG AWARD to acknowledge!!

Actually, I had this two days ago, but couldn't get onto my poor neglected blog right then because of all of the above mentioned distractions.  Except for the cocktail glasses.  Really, I don't have any of those littering my desk.  Well, not right now. 

ANYwho, a big Tanks to Aussie Lori for bestowing this upon 'lil ole me.  It's the Honest Scrap Award, which means I get to write a list of ten random, interesting things you didn't know about me!  Yay!  I can't wait to get started!  This will be fun!  Here I go...Starting now....ten...interesting.....random......interesting....Ummm, can I get back to you?

Ok, I'll give this a try:

Random Fact #1:  My junior high school was adjacent to a golf course. (No, that's not all) While walking in the outdoor quad area, between classes, I got hit square in the chin with a golf ball.  You couldn't even see the golf course from where I was walking.  What?  It's RANDOM - what are the odds??

Random Fact #2:  When I was 10, my mom, myself and 4 other kids narrowly escaped a car fire in the middle of the night on a winding road very far from home.  A kind trucker came to our rescue.

Random fact #3:  I'm afraid of cockroaches.  I once dreamed a giant one forced me to dance with it.  I swear I'm not making that up.

Random fact #4:  I'm terrible with directions.  I can go to the same place on a weekly basis and still get lost.  I blame it on my elementary school teachers who made me stop writing with my left hand.  It confused me.

Random fact #5:  I would love to downsize and live in an RV and travel the country and blog about it.  I just have to get my husband on board.  Literally.  Cause I've never driven an RV.  

Random fact #6:  I can't stand hairbrushes lying around anywhere other than a bathroom.  All that unattached hair....It's just gross.

Random fact #7:  I like to play Sims.  If you don't know what that is, it's a computer game of virtual little families and towns that you can create and control.  I started with Sims, then came Sims2 and now
Sims3.  When my real world is a little too real for me, I retreat to Sim world.  Although since I discovered blog world, I haven't been playing as much.

Random fact #8:  My husband was in a rock band in the 80's.  In so many ways we are complete opposites, and yet are similar souls.  I'm lucky to have found him.

Random fact #9:  The first concert I ever went to was the Osmonds.  See number 8 above.

And last - THE #10 RANDOM FACT ABOUT ME IS....*drumroll*

I completely freeze up in front of a camera or microphone.
*cymbols please*

There.  I hope that wasn't too painful to read.

Now I get to share this blog award love with 7 other bloggers.  Some of you may have already gotten this, so if you don't want to acknowledge it, screw you that's totally cool. (heh, heh)  But here are my picks:

1.  365 days of dance This is my daughter.  I'm hoping this little award will encourage and inspire her.  She's a good writer.
2.  Mommy X 
3.  Sandbox Gems
4.  She Don't Make False Claims
5.  Stir Fry Awesomeness
6.  Lessons From The Monk I Married
7.  Parenting By Dummies

Now I really need to get caught up on reading and commenting.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

American Idol Idolatry

I love Hollywood Week on American Idol!  We get a glimpse of what the Idol hopefuls are really made of. 

So far, the gals outnumber the guys as far as talent goes, but the best audition last night was Andrew Garcia singing his version of Paula Abdul's "Straight Up".  Paula was done proud and would have said something unintelligible but highly complimentary if she were there.

Second place, for me, was Didi Benami, bravely and beautifully singing a song Cara wrote. 

It's a toss up for third place between Big Michael Lynche and Lilly Scott.  Big Mike's "soul meets alternative" style is easy to listen to while Lilly's lilting voice is unique and whimsical.

Don't you love the stories behind the contestants?  Some of them didn't end the way they would have liked.  Vanessa, the "Pickleresque" country girl didn't make it.  Neither did Maddy, who wanted to make it for her brothers.  I hope they realize, after the disappointment fades, that this is only the beginning for them and the courage it took to get them this far will take them even farther if they let it.

But still left are a waitress, a sandwich maker, a single mom, a high school kid, a salesperson, and forty or so other hopefuls who hold occupations that have nothing to do with music.  Gotta love this show!

Speaking of nothing to do with music, the very funny Ellen DeGeneres did a stand-up job at judging, in my opinion.  Her sense of humor lightened the vibe and her comments were insightful and right on.  Heck, if hubby and I can critique from our living room couch and be scarily accurate,  Ellen can do it in her tennies and torn jeans from behind the judging table just fine.  Go Ellen!

Tonight the contestants perform for the judges in groups.  It's most viewers favorite part of the auditions.  We get to see the idol hopefuls get down and dirty with each other and see who rises to the top despite the conflicts.  For one night American Idol meets American Gladiators.  I'll be tuning in!

Friday, February 5, 2010

Crappy, Wordless Wednesday and Just Desserts

Well, wordless Wednesday worked out well for me because it was kind of a crappy day.  So crappy I didn't care to write about it.

But today is Thursday.  (Actually, just pretend it's still Thursday, because my internet went down before this posted and then I was too busy all day Friday to post it, so now it's Friday night)

So moving on....

I love my brother.  He cooks things.  Now mind you, I like to cook too.  But it sure is nice when I'm stuck working on loans and wondering every minute that I'm doing it, why I'm doing sure is nice to suddenly catch a whiff of something delectable cooking from downstairs.

Wednesday night, at the end of my crappy day, I could smell ribs.  Barbequed ribs.  And barbequed beans.  And the pièce de résistance....*insert drumroll here* 

The Maple Blonde Brownie.

Oh, joy of joys!  My crappy day was was not going to end in the toilet! 

If you have never had the Maple Blonde Brownie (and yes, it should be capitalized), let me just tell you - it's heaven. on. a plate. 

It's a moist, gooey, blonde brownie with bits of white chocolate that are just soft enough to melt on your tongue.  It's topped with vanilla ice cream and then drenched in this luscious, warm maple and cream sauce that is so good it tempts you to drink what's left on your plate.  Seriously. 

When the brownie is gone and the sauce is mixed with the melted ice cream - well, I tipped the plate and drank it.  A little vodka and kahlua and it would have been the perfect cocktail.

But I'm getting ahead of myself.  When I came downstairs and saw what my brother was making, I hovered in the kitchen like a huey.  You see, my brother, although a good cook, likes to experiment with recipes.

I wasn't about to let that happen with this one.  He wanted to put in more walnuts and less butter.  "Don't deviate!" I cried. 

He gave me a strange look.  The kind of look a man gives when he cannot understand the healing powers of chocolate and alcohol to a woman.

He couldn't possibly understand how this dessert was going to make my world make sense again.  But he complied. 

He made it exactly like the recipe said and it was every bit as good as the original Applebees famous version.

My sister called while it was in the oven and I was giddy with excitement as I described the dessert to her and how good it was.  She had never had it so it was hard for me to get her to comprehend it.  I finally said, "It's effffing good!"  She got it.

It was effffing good too.

And today is Friday and a couple of the problems that made my Wednesday so crappy have been resolved and the folks whose loans were affected by the problems, are still going to get their homes, so all is well.

Click here for the recipe that salvages crappy days. Thank you Food Network!