Howdy, everybody! Welcome back to another fun edition of Saturday 9, brought to us by the wonderful Crazy Sam. Since Hallowe'en was last night, this week's question center around the theme song to the deliciously creepy show, The Addams Family. Fun!
The Addams Family (1964) Unfamiliar with this week's song? Hear it here.
1) One of TV's spookiest families was inspired by a series of New Yorker cartoons. What's the last magazine you flipped through?
When I received the latest issue of Town & Country magazine in the mail the other day, I noticed down there on the bottom right where Laura Dern was quoted as saying, "I will NOT be rich!" But, umm... after I flipped through 20-some pages of Cartier diamonds and the like, I finally found the article. She is wealthy beyond measure compared to most of us, along with talented and famous. I still can't figure out that quote.
2) The Addams' butler, Lurch, was originally conceived as a mute. But then actor Ted Cassidy ad libbed the line, "You rang?" and Lurch had a voice, and a catchphrase. Can you think of another catchphrase connected to a TV character?
I had a crush on Joey Lawrence way back on first his days on Gimme a Break! and then Blossom. He was so hot! (He still is, but I think now he's so careful with his grooming that it turns me off.) Anyway, I haven't thought of this in a while, so it amused me when my first thought was his "Whoa!" catchphrase from Blossom.
3) Now here's the most important question of the week: Do you prefer The Addams Family or The Munsters?
Oh, that's just not fair! But by a slim margin, I think I lean toward The Munsters. I love them both!
4) What's the scariest movie you've ever seen?
I'm not a fan of the horror movie genre, so I don't watch many of them. I was forced to watch many as a kid, and I still have nightmares. Right after my mother died, my dad forced me to sit through Children of the Corn on HBO. I was seven. I was terrified. This entertained him. Bastard.
5) Thursday was Halloween. What goodies did you give the trick or treaters?
Hubs bought Reese's peanut butter cups and Kit-Kats, along with Dum-Dums and fun pencils so we didn't leave out the TPP kiddos.
6) Are you attending/have you attended any Halloween parties this year?
No, not this year. Hardly ever, really.
7) Did you carve a jack o'lantern this year?
Oh, my God! With everything we had going on last month, I completely forgot!
8) Do you eat candy corn all year around ... only at Halloween ... or never?
N. E. V. E. R.
9) In 1964, when The Addams Family premiered, one of the most popular store-bought Halloween costumes was Bambi. It came with a plastic mask held on by a thin elastic band. Tell us about a memorable Halloween costume from your childhood.
I was a dancer until I was 15, so a lot of times when Halloween rolled around, if I hadn't come up with a costume yet I just wore something from the last recital!
I hope y'all had a spookily fun night on Halloween. Now, onward - happy November! We've already had snow here in Idaho, as of one week ago. (And at least once more since. Have you?!)
1) This song is from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, starring Gene Wilder. The movie was remade as Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, with Johnny Depp as Willy Wonka. Which Wonka did you prefer?
I guess I'm old-school on this one. I love the inimitable Gene Wilder as Willy Wonka!
2) In the movie, this song is sung by Bill, the candy store shopkeeper. Think about the last counter person you dealt with. We know that he or she likely didn't break into song, but did you two engage in conversation?
Yeah. Well. Last night, Chloë and I attended the "Sweater Weather Get-Together" at The Twisted Ewe, a yarn shop up in Boise. I engaged with several of the shop staff, and especially introduced myself to the young woman who runs their social media stuff, because I engage with her frequently, and I'd never met her in person. I also signed up to be a test knitter.
3) The lyrics tell us that The Candy Man can make the world taste good. What's the last thing you ate? Was it delicious, or just OK?
I ate oatmeal with raisins. As you can probably guess, it was just okay. This morning I had oatmeal with flax and chia seeds. That was actually better - even though it was cold by the time I ate it. 4) The most popular recording of this song was by Sammy Davis, Jr. Sammy was in a horrific car accident when he was 29 years old. His cheek and nose were broken and he lost an eye. That he survived at all left him reflective and after his hospitalization, he converted to Judaism. Do you still worship in the faith you were raised in?
No. Not only no, but hell no. No, no, no, no, no.
5) Sammy was proud of the honorary college degrees he received because he never formally attended school. As a child, he performed on the road with his father and uncle. In addition to depriving him of an education, that lifestyle kept him from kids his own age. He would later describe his childhood as, "in a word, 'lonely.'" Give us a one-word description of your childhood.
T R A U M A T I C 6) Because he spent so much of his youth on the road, living on buses, trains and hotel rooms, he loved eventually having his own kitchen and being able to cook his own meals. This weekend, will you spend much time in the kitchen?
Probably not. Chloë and I are going to be in Boise all day tomorrow at the ACLU's Activist Academy, and then on Sunday we'll be watching Sophia at an equestrian competition. So maybe we'll have time to cash in on some more birthday freebies (like these delicious chocolate-covered strawberries from The Melting Pot) while we're out and about!
7) Sammy enjoyed experimenting with clothes and jewelry. What about you? Do you consider yourself conservative in dress or are you fashion forward?
Eh. Neither, maybe? I'm just me.
8) When he died, Sammy was in debt to the IRS. Do you handle your own taxes, or do you use the services of an accountant?
I do 'em. Not worth much since Rob retired, though! 9) Random question: If you had to tell nothing but the truth (not even the tiniest white lie) for 24 hours, do you think you'd get yourself in trouble?
Very much so, yes. Who wouldn't?
Arrright. I gotta prepare for the next thing. And then the next. Gotta remind myself of what my physical therapist, Susan, tells me: "Pacing, Melanie. Remember to pace yourself."
I'm not good at it, y'all!!!
♥ Take time for yourselves, and thank your hostess, Gal - er, Sam - she works hard for us. (I'm still sorry.) (P.S. I did know the song, of course, but I clicked the link and listened again, and then more of Sammy, and then on to some other stuff. Really light-hearted comedy and Adam Sandler and things I just truly, honestly needed right at this moment in time.) ♥
Hi, you guys!! I'm going to get into Saturday 9 in a moment. But first, let me say:
to this young lady today:
Can you guys believe it? My kids have practically grown up in front if y'all on Saturday 9 and Sunday Stealing, and here now as of this very day, my firstborn is an adult! I swear, I'm in absolute shock. Happy birthday, Chloë Raine!
Okay. On to Saturday 9. Link up here to play along with us today!
(And I may jump in and do last week's, which I missed due to illness.)
The Sweet Escape (2006)
Unfamiliar with this week's song. Hear it here. 1) This song begins with, "First of all, let me say I must apologize ..." Who most recently apologized to you?
Actually, it was this girl. We bumped heads or something, and she immediately apologized. Chloë, like her mother, is an over-apologizer. People ask us to stop, and we just can't! It's annoying for us, too. Just so you know.
2) Gwen Stefani sings that she acted like "sour milk on the floor." Is there milk in your refrigerator right now? What about non-dairy creamer?
I'm pretty sure there is cow's milk in the fridge for the kids' cereal right now. We do need to pick up some more almond milk for me, though.
3) In the video, Gwen wears several different pairs of stiletto heels. What are you wearing on your feet as you answer these questions?
Great for those who can and want to wear stilettos, high heels, and all that - but I can't and never really wanted to. I've worn stiletto pumps a few memorable times, but I can rarely find any, let alone a billion pairs, that make me think, "Yeah, I'd rather wear those shoes, put that dent in my wallet, and sacrifice my foot health." It just doesn't happen. So right now, I'm barefoot. I usually am.
4) Mrs. Stefani named her daughter "Gwen" after a stewardess in the book/movie Airport. Who was your favorite character in the book you just read, or movie you most recently watched?
Okay, so it's neither a book nor a movie, but I'm watching "Dear White People" on Netflix lately, and I adore the Samantha White character. She's sassy and smart - and stunning!
5) Gwen is a distant cousin of Madonna's. Are there any performers in your family?
Well, Chloë started acting and modeling at 5 years old, but about 10 or 11 years later, she decided she wanted to take an extended break from it to focus on other things. (The rejection is tough!) And Sophia is now in the marching band (percussion) - her first parade is today! - and competes in equestrian events. Jack is nooottttttt the performing type!
6) In high school, she joined the swim team not because she enjoys swimming but because she wanted to lose weight. Are you doing anything (dieting, participating in an exercise regimen) in order to shed a few pounds?
I want to, but I'm not sure what to do. I've been all over the map weight-wise, and now that I've gained back a fair number of lbs from the medicine I take, I admit, I'm depressed. I decided to try the keto diet in July, to disastrous effects. It really messed up my blood sugar stability, and I had severe hypoglycemia every day. And I'm dealing with gastroparesis now, and all sorts of things, so I just don't know what to do, honestly.
7) Before she became successful, Gwen worked at the makeup counter in a department store. What was the last thing you purchased? Did you buy it online or at a store?
I bought this pair of shoes for Chloë from Amazon. I didn't really pay for them, though; I get free items as an Ambassador for a company, in exchange for my honest reviews. I hope they fit her!
8) Gwen has gotten a great deal of publicity for her romance with country star, Blake Shelton. What's your favorite Blake Shelton song?
Gah, they're so cute together, aren't they? I hope they last and stay happy. I love his song, "God's Country," ever since I saw him debut it on The Voice last Spring.
9) Random question: Which of these compliments would make you the happiest: to be called fascinating, or brilliant, or gorgeous?
Well, I think that, like this sapphire engagement ring from Lauren B Jewelry, it's possible to be all three in the same moment. Likewise, I think all three may last a lifetime or be fleeting and momentary. That being said, if I could only be one, and even if would only last a moment, I would want to be thought of as brilliant. I'd choose that option 10 times out of 10.
That was fun, Sam, thanks! Might come back later and do some catching up from last week but for right now, I've got some more birthday planning to do! See ya later on the blogiverse.
How ya doin', folks? Welcome back. Click here if you want to join the rest of the Saturday 9 gang this week!
But first, a few things:
First, Viola Davis, go on with yo' fine self.
Second, this is the first time I've been out of bed for any length of time since Sunday night, when I went out to dinner with Hubs. I have a dizzying amount of health issues, and just the simple act of having a birthday dinner (his) out has worn me out that much. I hate it.
Finally, do a Google search for The Wizard of Oz. Then click on the ruby red shoes. And then, click on the tornado. Then come back here. Fun, right?!
1) This song is the theme of How to Get Away with Murder, the legal drama that premiered in 2014 and airs on Thursday nights. Are you a fan?
I have never watched it. Yet. Should I?
2) The song's refrain says, "I'll never catch up with you." Behind the wheel, do you carefully observe the speed limit? Or do you have a lead foot, making it hard for anyone to catch up with you?
I definitely have a lead foot - and I have the speeding tickets to prove it! There are a lot of 25 MPH roads here in Mountain Home, Idaho, which has made the transition from Boise (and before that, Miami) particularly difficult for me. It's impossible! So the first thing I do when I leave the house is turn on the cruise control, which fortunately starts at 25 MPH in our vehicle, so that I can't get any (more) tickets here. My current peeve is that the two-lane interstate from here to Boise, or anywhere else for that matter, allows 18-plus-wheelers to pass in the left lane, but they can only go 70 MPH. Except the speed limit is 80 MPH! So we're often stuck rolling our eyes, gnashing our teeth, and gripping the steering wheel in frustration behind those Macks.
3) How to Get Away with Murder is about Annalise Keating, a law professor at a top Philadelphia university. She has a reputation for being tough, demanding and able to turn her students into successful defense attorneys. Tell us about a teacher who helped prepare you for life after graduation.
I had many great teachers and professors, so it's hard for me to single one out. But I will. At the University of Miami, I took Physics I and II from a gent who used to write "IAEFRTGDI" on the chalkboard before every exam. And then he'd read it aloud, pointing to each letter in turn: "If all else fails, read the g-- d--- instructions!" to remind us that, if we were stuck on a problem, to do exactly that. He'd just pause for the "G-D-" parts, giving us all a giggle. But that was 25 years ago, and I've obviously never forgotten his lesson!
4) The students she feels show the most promise - and are recruited to help her solve murders - are known as The Keating Four. Did you ever sense that you were your teacher's favorite?
It was always pretty rare for me not to be the teacher's pet.
5) Viola Davis was just nominated for an Emmy for playing Professor Keating. Ms. Davis was born on a farm in SC. Have you spent more of your life in a rural, suburban or urban setting?
That's Chloë and me on South Beach (Miami) on New Year's Eve, 2015 - I had just started getting sick that year, and that night really took a lot out of me. But I digress. I'm a city girl, through-and-through. Now I live in land-locked Idaho. Or I'm dying here. Either way, I've asked Hubs to take me to the beach at least every couple of years or so. I miss it more than I could ever convey.
6) Next to Annalise Keating, Viola Davis is best known for her Oscar-nominated role as Aibileen in the movie, The Help. Have you seen it?
I have, and while we (my daughters and I) loved it, I was a bit disappointed because it was historically inaccurate. They could have done a lot more to celebrate and elevate the true stories those black actresses portrayed.
7) In 2014, the year How to Get Away with Murder premiered, we lost two famous comedians: Robin Williams and Joan Rivers. Who was the last person to make you laugh out loud? (This means actually, literally laughing out loud, not just keystroking LOL.)
I mean, I'm a legit nerd and don't mind it, but yes, all of these (and more) individually and collectively made me laugh aloud. In fact, I wanted to keep looking and enjoying, but then I remembered I had unfinished business here with Sam. ;)
8) The 2014 Olympics were held in Sochi. Have you ever been to Russia? If not, is it a dream destination of yours?
I want to see the whole world, but the idea of going to Russia draws a great big "meh" out of me. Is it enough that my grandpa went there?
9) Random question: The sign on the railing says, "Wet Paint." Do you touch the railing to see if it's really wet?
Probably. At least nine times out of 10 I would, anyway. In one of my Animal Behavior lectures, Prof told us of a study - probably by Konrad Lorenz - wherein four different species were suspended in a net that allowed the dangling of one or more legs. Initially, when a leg was dangled, it hit a surface that delivered a painful electric shock. (Ugh, I hate these studies.) Anyway, the animals studied included a cat, a pig, a dog, and a monkey. We students had to guess which animal then exhibited which behavior: one never, ever put down its leg again. Was it smart, having learnt its lesson? One waited awhile and then tried again. Another maybe waited longer? I forget. And the fourth continuously put down that leg, time and time again. Was it stupid, forgetting each time about the shock? Or was it just following its genetic predisposition to test a thing to see if something new and different would happen? I believe that last animal was the cat. (In the first case, I believe it was... the pig! Surprised?) Long story short, I am like the cat. I always need to test everything to see if it's true, or still true. The more data I can collect about Life, the more accurate I'll be, right?
Y'all have a good weekend. And FFS, please stop confusing your Batesian and Müllerian mimicry, wouldja? So distasteful. ;)
My younger two kiddos started public high school this week, the first time they've ridden a bus or been to public school in about a decade! This did not come without anxiety and trepidation - and, when it started, many tears over not knowing what to do - but they've handled it, and I think we're on the right path. My baby, Sophie, even decided to take up Percussion in Marching Band! Little did I know that this would be an every-single-day committment! Hopefully she's up for it.
This week's theme, brought to us by the plucky Sam, is from the theme of The Gilmore Girls. Did you watch it back in the day? I used to be so addicted to it, but I have not yet watched the reboot. I keep meaning to, though it hasn't happened. Link up here if you want to play along with the rest of us!
1) This is the theme of The Gilmore Girls, a TV show that ran from 2000 to 2007. It recently enjoyed renewed popularity as a reboot. Were you a fan?
Very much so. Actually, you wanna know a not-so-secret little secret? Our daughter Sophia's (born in 2005) middle name is Lorelei, and yes, I chose it after the two main characters. I looooooved that name as much as the show and Rory and Lorelai! (I'm about 2/3 German, though, so I kept the spelling of the German siren, instead.)
2) The show is about thirtysomething Lorelai Gilmore, her teenage daughter Rory, and her parents, Richard and Emily. The four of them had dinner together every Friday night. Who did you have dinner with on Friday? What was on the menu?
Actually, I didn't have dinner on Friday night. Rob and I were supposed to go out for his early birthday dinner - and tequila cocktails! - to The Matador in Boise on Friday night, but after my eardrum ruptured, I just wanted to go home and lie down. And I crashed. So we're going on Saturday night, instead. I think I"m going to have the vegan Beyond burrito. I had a Beyond burger at Carls Jr. for free recently, and that was actually really good. It didn't have vegan cheese on it, though, which is a concept I don't get...
3) Lorelai is outgoing and talkative. How about you? Are you seldom at a loss for words?
I'm very shy with new people at first. But when I get comfortable, I straight up babble. Nobody can ever get a word in edgewise.
4) Rory dreamed of going to an Ivy League school and then becoming a broadcast journalist. When you were in high school, what were your ambitions?
I wanted to follow in the footsteps of Eugenie Clark and become a famous female marine biologist. I didn't know then that I was going to study shark behavior, so it was apt that I did.
5) Rory's grandfather (and Lorelai's dad) went to Yale and performed with the Whiffenpoofs, Yale's famous a cappella group. Have you ever sung in front of an audience?
Oh yes, including a capella. I played the part of Caterpillar from Alice in Wonderland - in a wildly popular costume - in 5th grade. That solo was nervewracking until I could see that the audience loved it, and then that fed my energy level. From 6th through 12th grades, I was in all the school choirs, including the girls' choir. I took voice lessons in high school. I was going to continue on in college, but somewhere along the way, I lost my nerve and skipped the audition.
6) Rory's grandmother (and Lorelai's mother) Emily was very active in civic organizations and worked hard on the Hartford Zoological Society's Annual Silent Auction. Have you ever attended an auction?
I have not! I want to, though. It's on my Bucket List. We stayed in the RMH in Pensacola, Florida, when Chloë was in the NICU there, and we have been active supporters of RMH ever since. I know the one here, in Boise, has annual silent auctions. One year, I plan to attend.
7) Alexis Bledel, who played Rory, went on to appear in Mad Men and The Handmaid's Tale. Of these three shows -- Gilmore Girls, Mad Men and The Handmaid's Tale -- which would you prefer to binge watch?
Actually, Chloë and I were supposed to go over and start binge-watching The Handmaid's Tale, starting from Season One, Episode 1, on Thursday. But then I wasn't feeling well, so we decided to take a raincheck. I've been wanting to see it, but we don't have Hulu!
8) Carole King originally wrote this week's song, "Where You Lead," for her Tapestry album. Do you have a favorite Carole King song?
It's hard not to love "You've Got a Friend," isn't it? I also love "Natural Woman."
9) Random question: If zoo animals could talk, which animal do you imagine would be the rudest?
Hey, y'all - welcome back! I'm in the throes of a full-on, true migraine right now, with visual aura, dizziness and nausea... the whole bit. But sleepiness, unfortunately, is not one of those symptoms, so here I am. All that to say, if my answers are sloppy, that's probably why. (This time; I can't excuse all the other times.)
Link up here if you wanna chit-chat with us about Frasier this week!
1) This is the theme from Frasier, a TV show that ran from 1993 to 2004. Were you a fan?
Definitely! That right there is my jam. Right up my alley.
2) The show is about a radio advice show host, Dr. Frasier Krane. When you listen to the radio, do you tune in for talk or music?
I'm not really into talk radio. I feel like I'm supposed to be, intellectually speaking, but I just don't want to. I listen for the music.
3) The theme's composer explained that tossed salad and scrambled eggs are both "mixed up," like the people who called Frasier's radio show. Which did you eat more recently, tossed salad or scrambled eggs?
I did eat eggs today - twice, since they are my main way to get my protein requirements in - but they were sunny-side up, over easy, on toast with a smidge of cheese. I haven't really had scrambled eggs in a long time. Maybe it's just not fancy enough for me? So anyway, probably a salad. Now I want a salad. A funny one, like these.
4) Peri Gilpin played Roz, Frasier's coworker at the radio station. The actress originally cast was Lisa Kudrow, but the show's producers didn't feel she was "right." Being released from Frasier gave her the opportunity to accept a bigger and better part: Phoebe on Friends. Can you think of a time when a setback was really a blessing in disguise?
Sure, like when the 100-year-old house we thought we loved in Kimberly, Idaho, came back with a plethora of safety and repair issues upon inspection, we were sorely disappointed. But that made way for us to find the house we bought instead (some of which I showed, above, and on Instagram). I love this house so much. Love it, love it, love it, love it!!!
5) Dr. Krane shared his home with Martin, his retired dad. Martin's favorite chair was a well-worn recliner, held together in parts with tape. Frasier tried to replace it by giving his father a brand-new, expensive leather chair as a gift. Martin wanted his old recliner back. Tell us about a present you either gave or received that wasn't a hit.
It's actually kind of an inside joke between us now: Rob (Hubs) kept asking for this Casio G-Shock DW9052 watch, when we lived in Miami. For Christmas, year after year after year, I gave him at least one new watch - not that watch, but a different watch or watches that I thought were better, which cost a lot more normally but for which I got incredible deals. He never wore any of them, though. This happened probably three years in a row, yet he kept asking for the Casio G-Shock for Christmas. Finally, the last Christmas before we moved here in 2017, I got him the watch he asked for. He wears it every single day. Heh. (I did get a deal on it, though!)
6) Kelsey Grammer played Dr. Krane on three different series (Cheers, Wings and Frasier) over 20 years. What job have you held the longest?
Well, I've been a stay-home mom since I was pregnant with Chloë (lots of complications, so I could not work). She'll be 18 in less than a month! So I guess Mum is my longest-held job, especially considering I home-schooled all three kids for ten years. Now that it looks like Chloë is heading off the CSI in Twin Falls, Idaho, to study nursing soon, and the littles are entering public high school, I'm going to have to start finding new ways to self-identify and validate myself!
7) Before he found success on Cheers, Grammer played bit parts on the daytime dramas Ryan's World and Another World. Have you ever followed a soap opera?
When I was a kid, I watched Guiding Light, but that was only because my stepsisters did, really. My mom was a fan of All My Children, so sometimes after she died I would watch that, too.
8) In addition to work in front of the camera, Grammer has done voice over work on commercials for Dr. Pepper and Cheerios. Are either of those products in your kitchen right now?
The kids love Cheerios, so I'm willing to bet there are at least two boxes in the pantry right now. I hate it. I can always tell when the kids have been eating it, because I think it smells like baby diarrhea. Blechhh!
9) Random question: You're invited to a party where dinner is served buffet style. There's spaghetti with tomato sauce, barbecue spare ribs and buffalo wings. When the evening is over, how likely are you to have a food stain on your clothes?
I can normally be pretty messy when I eat, but not in this case, because I wouldn't be able to eat any of those three things: I can't eat spaghetti, because of my gastric bypass surgery; I can't stand barbecue sauce and have never eaten spare ribs in my entire life; and, same thing with wings: I don't do barbecue, and I can't keep chicken down because of the bypass surgery. And since I'm allergic to everything, I'm basically on the ice diet now.
That was a fun one, Sam! Thanks for taking my mind off the migraine while I completed it. I think I've actually got a moment or two, so for once I'm gonna go 'round and visit y'all. Go me, such the equitable blogger! 🙄
Hey, hey! Welcome back. It's late here; 7:28 PM as I speak, but I've been in bed all day. I'm not feeling too well today. My doc is afraid I'm developing pneumonia, which has hounded me for the last four years or so. She wanted me to go straight to the hospital Thursday to get a chest x-ray and labs, but I have not listened to her because... well, I don't have time to be sick. I figure, if I don't go, they can't diagnose me, and they can't then stick me in a hospital bed. Sounds smart to me! ;)
This week's song is the theme from the 80s sitcom, Who's the Boss? I used to love that show, and the whole cast. I'm excited to see that one! Link up here if you want to play along with the rest of us this weekend.
Saturday 9: Brand New Life (The Theme from Who's the Boss) (1984)
1) Who's the Boss? is a sitcom that ran from 1984 to 1992. Were you a fan?
Oh, yes. It was one of my favorite shows. I still love all of those actors, especially Alyssa Milano. I always thought she was so gorgeous, and I still do. And I admire her for her role in the Me Too movement. 2) This week's song was composed by the show's producers, two men not known as songwriters. Have you ever tried your hand at songwriting?
Yes, I have. From 6th grade to the present, one of my best friends' father is a musician who has been famous in mostly the state of New York for decades (Todd Hobin), and he had a recording studio at their house. In our junior year of high school, Shana - a renowned musician in her own right, having shared the stage with Trans Siberian Orchestra, Josh Groban, Michael Bublé, Regina Carter, Jake Shimabakuro - wrote the music and I wrote the lyrics for a song for one of our group's good friends who was moving away. Mr. Hobin was going to let all of us girls record it in his studio. I ended up getting grounded for that entire year of school for a ridiculous reason, and couldn't go to the recording session, but I still remember how it goes!
3) The lyrics tell us that, as we go through life, it's not uncommon to "lose a dream or two." Do you agree? Have you ever had to give up on a dream?
Sure. I'd always had the goal of being a famous marine biologist. I got my double-bachelor's degree in Biology and in Marine Science from the University of Miami, and then took a year off to study for my GRE (I'd graduated in three years, so I hadn't had time to prepare), do an internship at Mote Marine Lab in Sarasota, and figure out my options. During college, I'd solidified my plans and became a pioneer of the Elasmobranch Club on campus, having decided to study shark behavior. I decided I wanted to go to the University of South Florida for my Ph.D. (skipping the offers to work on my Master's or Ph.D. there at U.M.), so I could join the lab of the world-famous shark expert, Dr. Philip J. Motta. That's the only lab to which I applied (so like me!), and I got in! This was huge; my fellow marine biologist friends were excited for me. After, three semesters, though, I decided this wasn't the plan for me. I wanted to be married and have a family, and I knew that a high number of scientists who spent a half a year, every year, at sea got divorced; that was not something I wanted. At the same time I was once again weighing my options, I'd met my husband of over 18 years. We eloped two months later, and a few weeks later, I found out I was already pregnant with Chloë. I haven't been an active marine biologist ever since, although I admit I miss it tremendously.
4) Who's the Boss? was about a highly-paid executive who hires a housekeeper. In the 1980s, it was unusual because the exec was a woman and the housekeeper was a man. Do you believe a man can be as good at housework as a woman?
I have no reason to believe otherwise. My husband, who is cooking a double stir-fry right now (tofu for my daughter's girlfriend and me, and chicken for everyone else), and the sicker I've become, the more he's helped around the house and helped guide the kids in their chores. All three - girls and boy - are expected to do the same chores, swapping on a monthly basis, so there is none of that "woman's place," "man's role" nonsense going on here!
5) Though the show's star, Tony Danza, graduated from University of Dubuque and was prepared to be a teacher, he got sidetracked. Back in New York, he boxed and tended bar and fell into acting. He finally did teach in 2010, taking over a 10th grade English class. How many different occupations have you held?
Let's see. Babysitter. Cashier. Author. Alumni Relations Associate. Marine Biologist. Legal Secretary. Stay-Home Mom. Hoping to reclaim "author" again! (That photo is one one the proofs from my college yearbook!)
6) On the show, his daughter was played by Alyssa Milano. When she was a teenager, she rebelled against the show's producers by cutting off her long hair and wearing a pixie style. Were you a rebellious teen?
Not even remotely. Maybe more so, now?
7) "The Boss" was Judith Light, who had been known to TV audiences from her work on One Life to Live. She met Robert Desiderio on the set of the soap opera and they have been married more than 34 years. Tell us where one of your romances got started.
When I was in 10th grade, Shana got me to join her for the beginning of the ECOS club in our school, which met at the Junior High. It was there that I met Ben, who was also interested in all things environmental. We started dating November 15th of that year, 1991, and stayed together about a year and a half. We remain friends; that's him at his recent wedding, in the boutonnierre. He's still a Central New York guy.
8) The show -- rebroadcast with subtitles -- was a hit in Italy, where it was known as Casalingo Superpiù (Super Housekeeper). Say something to us in Italian.
La torre pendente di Pisa è molto più corta di quanto mi aspettassi!
9) Random question -- Have you more recently watched the sun rise or set?
Defintely the sun setting, including last night. Here are a few recents; we've seen lots of rainbows lately!
All right. Tofu's ready. I mean, stir-fry. Off to family dinner! Ciao, bellas.
Hey, Saturday 9 fam. Welcome back. I'm suffering from exhaustion right now and am trying to rally and be chipper, so we'll see. Seeing the Three's Company gang helped; that was my faaaaaaavorite show back in the original airing days! Super happy to see this feature.
Link up here if you'd like to play along with us this weekend!
1) This week's song was the theme to Three's Company, a sitcom that ran for eight seasons. Were you a fan?
Definitely!! Especially John Ritter and Chrissy's chemistry. This show and Dukes of Hazzard were my whole televisional existence as a kid. 2) The Three's Company theme was composed by Joe Raposo, who also wrote the theme to Sesame Street. Can you recall any of the lyrics to the Sesame Street song?
Can you tell me how to get, how to get to Sesame Street? I even named my pet rat in fifth grade, who had similar coloration, "Barkley" after this SS doggo.
3) The lyrics to this song invite you to "come and knock on our door." What's the last door you knocked on (or the most recent doorbell your rang)?
Gosh... Other than knocking on my kids' bedroom doors when they're shut, I can't remember the last time I rang a bell or knocked on someone's door. Huh. It's really been ages.
4) Three's Company was about three roommates who live together platonically, sharing a two bedroom apartment. Tell us about a roommate who shared your living quarters.
Speaking of Janet, I'll tell you about my roommate Janet. When I moved to St. Pete, FL, from Miami, she was my roommate. Janet was about a decade older than I was and was a wildlife ranger who intercepted animals illegally smuggled into the United States. She had a lot of interesting stories! One time, someone smuggled in a hippo. Yes. A freaking hippo.
5) Each of the roommates has a profession: Jack is a cook, Chrissy is a secretary (aka administrative assistant) and Janet is a florist. When did you last buy flowers?
I can't remember. Earlier this year. But these, here, are the gorgeous tulips my kids gave me for this year's Mother's Day. Trader Joe's has great flowers for great prices!
6) They often meet their neighbor, Larry, at a nearby bar called The Regal Beagle. What's the name of the establishment where you most recently enjoyed an adult beverage?
I don't drink very often anymore, although I have had a few wine coolers at home lately. Or at least, a sip here and a sip there. In February, my friend Becca from Becca's Backyard and I went on a fancy Galentine's date to Chandler's in downtown Boise. We had so, so, so much fun. It's so cool living near someone I met as a blogger now, and being fast friends. 7) Their meddling landlord was Mr. Roper. He was cheap, nosy, and very talented at fixing things around the building. How much are you like Mr. Roper? Are you frugal? Nosy? A handy do-it-yourselfer?
I am certainly frugal; I hate paying full-price for anything and fight for every penny I spend/save. I don't like to call myself "nosy" but rather use the term "interested." I like to study human nature. I used to be much more of a do-it-yourselfer than I am able to be now. Fortunately, Hubs still is - even after multiple surgeries to remove his brain tumor and prostate cancer! I'm so thankful for him and told him so last night, actually.
8) Three's Company was controversial again, more than 15 years after it ceased production. In March 2001, Nick at Nite re-edited an episode after a viewer called, alerting the network that a bit too much of John Ritter was visible in his blue boxer shorts. Have you ever called, emailed or written to, a TV station to complain?
No. I don't believe I have.
9) Random question -- Is the screen on your cellphone cracked?
No, not at the moment, despite the fact I drop it constantly. I appear to have a really good case and cover on it. Watch, now that I've told you that, it'll shatter tomorrow!
Fun time. Thank you, "Sam," for all that you do. I appreciate your hard work.
(I do know this song and am singing along with Johnny Rivers. And now it led into listening to CCR, which I also love.)
The Part With the Lyrics
There's a man who leads a life of danger To everyone he meets he stays a stranger With every move he makes another chance he takes Odds are he won't live to see tomorrow
Secret agent man, secret agent man They've given you a number and taken away your name
Beware of pretty faces that you find A pretty face can hide an evil mind Ah, be careful what you say Or you'll give yourself away Odds are you won't live to see tomorrow
Secret agent man, secret agent man They've given you a number and taken away your name
Secret agent man, secret agent man They've given you a number and taken away your name
Swingin' on the Riviera one day And then layin' in the Bombay alley next day Oh no, you let the wrong word slip While kissing persuasive lips The odds are you won't live to see tomorrow
Secret agent man, secret agent man They've given you a number and taken away your name
Secret agent man
The Part Where I Apologize
Hey. Persona non grata here. I have a certain amount of contrition over my post last week. I know I ruffled some feathers, but maybe that's not the worst thing in the world if it gets a conversation going, even if I get the ugly bits. I got some pretty supportive responses (both on the blog and directly to me, privately), and I also received some angry <<words muffled and inaudible>> replies. I do want to admit I did not realize quite how much research went into inventing the nine weekly questions, although I could tell it was a fair amount each week. Obviously it never stopped me from answering the questions, when I was able to play, thoughtfully - although some of you thought knowing/not knowing the song/musician never affected one's abililty to do so at all, which is incorrect.
I did do the recent Backstreet Boys, Billy Ray & Miley Cyrus, and Britney Spears editions, so it can't be said I play too infrequently to have noticed those among others. Also, I guess what I am saying to that is that none of those more recent acts are what I personally might consider good, quality music - but that's a conversation for a different day. I could list an exceptionally long list of music that is neither pop nor current, but since I never write about those like I do about my tongue-in-cheek love for pop muzak, y'maybe just don't know. I don't want to lose y'all as my online friends, and there are a good many of you I think I'd love to know in real life, too, so please accept that I have felt nothing but contrition since that post went up last week. Sometimes my real-life stress asserts itself into unrelated online stuff, and because I possess no filter - none at all - I can't always reel it back in. I'm sorry.
The Part Where I Mention a Billie Eilish Song I Love (one of many; cheeky, I know)
1) This is the theme of a TV show that ran on CBS from 1964-1967. The series was produced, and originally aired, in England. The BBC has shared many shows with American audiences over the years. Can you name another?
I never really got into Downton Abbey, but many of my friends were really into it.
2) The show is about John Drake, a special agent dedicated to exposing plots that threaten world peace. A quick check of Netflix and Goodreads reveals that spy stories are just as popular today. Is espionage a genre you enjoy? Do you read books, or watch shows and movies, about spies?
I don't go out of my way to watch spy movies, but I don't avoid them, either. I might be persuaded to see a Bond movie for the first time in ages (I haven't seen any since Pierce Brosnan) if Idris Elba were tapped to play 007, though... ;)
3) The lyrics tell us Drake travels from the Riviera to Bombay. Where were you when you last spent the night away from home? Why were you there (vacation, business, international intrigue)?
Oh, definitely international intrigue, for sure. No doubt about that.
No, actually, I was supposed to be taking 17yo Chloë with me to Vancouver, B.C., this weekend to a Moms' summit with various companies and grow my 'brand' as an influencer in the mommiverse - or whatever cutesy name is en vogue these days - but I can't afford to go now. Medical bills and the gas from traveling back and forth to Boise for doc appointments has me strapped. I'm super bummed; it promised to be both informative and fun.
So the last time I spent a night away from home was in April, when I took 14yo Sophia to Pocatello, Idaho, for an event with the state's branch of International Pony Club. That's her in the back row, far right end. Blonde. Oh wait, that doesn't help.
4) The refrain states, "They've given you a number and taken away your name." In today's digital world, that could now be said of all of us. Are you good at remembering your computer passwords?
I used to be, before Succubus took my memory away. Now I have to keep a list... somewhere.
5) Patrick McGoohan, who played Agent Drake, went from being a good guy to appearing as a murderer on Columbo four times. Were you a fan of Columbo?
No, but I think it was my grandpa who was. I tried to get into it, with him, but after learning about Peter Falk's false eye, I got squeamish. Same with Sammy Davis, Jr. I'm funny about eyeballs. Ick.
6) Born John Ramistella, this week's featured artist, Johnny Rivers, grew up in Louisiana. He took "Rivers" as his stage name because he grew up along the Mighty Mississippi. If you were to change your last name based on the geography of the area where you grew up, how would you be known?
Hmm. "Melanie Mountains" and "Fingerlakes Mel" sound a bit pornographic. Not the kind of film industry I guess you're talking about? So how about "Melanie Bronx" after my mom's birthplace? 7) In 1966, when this song was popular, Jacqueline Kennedy was the woman most Americans admired. What famous woman do you admire most? (She doesn't have to be American.)
Oh, so many women. Michelle Obama, definitely. 37-year-old Barbara Pierce Bush (Coyne) is really impressing me lately. She's worked both for the Smithsonian Museum and with AIDS patients in Africa. She founded the Global Health Corps, which she spoke about in a TED Talk in Brooklyn. She has spoken out in support of same-sex marriage in New York. And like her twin sister, Jenna, she is an independent thinker: neither is a member of the Republican Party.
8) 1966 also found another Jacqueline was in the news. Jacqueline Susann's first novel, Valley of the Dolls, was atop the best seller lists, even though it was savaged by the critics. What's your guilty pleasure? What book, movie, TV show, or song do you enjoy, even though you know it has little artistic merit?
So I like Nicki Minaj, and "Good Form" is a song - and video - that's not for the faint of heart. Don't say you weren't warned.
9) Random question: Imagine you've been stranded alone in the woods for 10 days. No companionship, no internet or phone or TV. You have been sleeping in the dirt, living on berries and river water. Your rescuers drive you to a hotel. Upon check-in, what's the first thing you do?
Okay, first of all, this guy is hilarious and I'm going to have to start doing this stuff like him when I visit a hotel! And now, to answer your question, I would probably "use the facilities" and then stumble to the bed. Wake me up in two days, y'all. Yeesh!
The Part Where I Finish
Welp, that was a fun one. I enjoyed it whole-heartedly. Now I'm off in search of some coffee. Cheers, y'all!
Heya, folks! Welcome back to my corner of Ye Olde Interwebs. Glad to have you back. This week, we're playing a fun round of Would You Rather with Bev over at SunSt. ;) Link up here if you'd like to play along with us this week!
Would you rather be able to detect any lie you hear or get away with any lie you tell?
Well, hmm. Both would be most useful. ;) I think, as a wife and mother, I'd have to say I'd rather be able to detect any lie I hear. I mean, I know each member of my family's "tells" pretty well, but there are those times...
Would you rather be a hopeless romantic or a hopeless unromantic?
Oh, I'm a hopeless romantic, and I rather like it that way.
Would you rather have too many friends or too few?
Um, why would I chose to have too few friends?
Would you rather have no taste buds or be blind?
Easy: no taste buds. I have already significantly lost my sense of taste & smell, and while boring sometimes, it's not the end of the world. But I literally like to live my life in living color, and all the visual beauty in the world would be so... I'd be devastated if I lost that.
Would you rather never hear music again or lose the ability to read?
Ooh, that's a tough one. I can't decide. Would I have the ability to re-learn how to read? Hm. If not, then please do one to me and don't tell me which; it'll hurt either way.
Would you rather find true love or be rich?
If I didn't have true love, I'd never consider myself to be rich. One contributes to happiness; the other contributes to convenience.
Would you rather be the richest person or the smartest?
I'm pretty fond of being intelligent. Being rich is overrated.
Would you rather create history or delete it?
I'd much rather create history, especially if it's good stuff. Even bad stuff shouldn't be deleted from history, because well,... Winston Churchill.
Would you rather create a great piece of art and not get credit or get credit for a piece of art you didn’t create?
I would never want to get credit for something I didn't do, good or bad. That would make me feel rotten. I'd much rather have a secret sort of joy over creating something beautiful that others admired, knowing I gave them something special.
Would you rather age from the neck up, or from the neck down.
Hands down, neck down!
Would you rather see the world but live in poverty or stay in one place and live rich?
I'd travel and travel and travel until I dropped.
Would you rather become famous or powerful?
I'd never want to risk being drunk with power, so I hope I'd be famous for something wonderful!
Would you rather be a creative person or a technical person?
I like being a creative. There's always something brewing.
Would you rather get a paper cut whenever you touch paper or bite your tongue whenever you eat something?
I do bite my tongue constantly already, and while it's painful, I guess it wouldn't be any more painful to keep doing it. On the other hand, paper cuts are the worst!!
Would you rather wake up in the morning looking like a giraffe or a kangaroo?
Does it matter? It's just a silly question. ;)
Would you rather speak “whale” or read babies’ minds?
I can already do both. Both worthy abilities under the right circumstances...
Would you rather eat pizza every day or never eat pizza again?
Hey, now, don't take pizza away from this New Yorker! It didn't say I could only eat pizza, or how much pizza I had to eat, so eating a little a day is much preferable to never eating it again. (P.S. This pizza is what I ate in Dubrovnik, Croatia, while on our Mediterranean cruise in 2008. Such good times!)
Would you rather stay forever at your current age or be 10 years younger?
Ten times out of ten, I'd want to be a decade younger than I am right now. Getting older is for the birds! Especially now that my health has taken a sharp detour south for the past four years. Hit the rewind button, please!
Thanks for the fun meme, Bev! Y'all have a good week! Hopefully I'll be here on time next week for S9 & SS. I have to take my daughters to Boise Pride on Friday & Saturday.
(First of all, let me just say that it sure is: it's 0339 on Saturday, July 1st, 2019. Heh. Okay, okay, that aside...
Welcome back, party people! My 14yo daughter Sophie and I are up late watching, currently, Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs. The kids used to watch this over and over when they were littler. Sophia was shocked to find out a little earlier that I'd never sat down and watched it with them. I'd only heard it a billion times from the front seat of the minivan while they played it in the onboard DVD player! So she had to queue it up on Netflix.
Link up here if you'd like to play along with the S9ers today!
(Personally, I'd never heard it, although I do know the other from my pic up top there.)
1) Ricky Nelson laments that he should have been home hours ago. When is the last time you stayed up later than you should have? What were you doing?
Looking up master bedroom inspo for the house we're closing on first thing Monday morning. (EEEEEEKKKKK!!!) Hubs and I agree we both like this one the best.
2) Compounding Ricky's problem is that he's nearly out of gas. How is your gas tank right now? When did you most recently fill 'er up?
Welp, yesterday was payday, so we filled 'er up first thing in the morning.
3) It gets worse! He can't call home because he doesn't have a dime for the pay phone. Have you recently been in a situation where you've been glad you had your cell phone handy?
Only all the time! Yesterday, I had back-to-back-to-back medical appointments (I'm being evaluated for MS now), and I am not the most patient person ever. Good thing I had my phone to keep me busy! And my charger. And... hubs. Who brought his block. I always forget mine. Heh. (For the record, my first phone was like #9 or #10, above.)
4) The video for this song is from an episode of The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet. Ozzie Nelson, Ricky's father, was in charge of the show and made the rules. One was that no one was allowed to smoke on the set... except his wife, Harriet. Do you smoke? Have you ever lived with a smoker?
I do not smoke, I have never smoked, and I will never smoke. Yes, I have lived with a smoker; I do not think it is entirely a leap (especially based on modern medical evidence) that this might help explain why I've had lifelong asthma and migraine issues. This is also why I do not smoke, have never smoked, and will not ever smoke - and neither should you. (And yes, in this regard, I judge.)
5) Life magazine coined the phrase "teen idol" to describe Ricky's popularity. According to Tiger Beat, today's teen idols include Johnny Orlando and Ruby Jay. Johnny was born in 2003, Ruby in 2004. Sam admits that before today, she had no idea who these young people are. How about you?
Nope. Never heard of these two!
6) While Paul McCartney and Bob Dylan have posthumously praised Ricky Nelson's music, 1950s music critics dismissed him as a lightweight. What's the last review you read? Was it written by a professional critic, or was it contributed by a consumer to a site like Amazon or Yelp?
Earlier, I was just flipping through People magazine, and the last review I read in it was for the book The Flatshare by Beth O'Leary. Looks interesting.
7) At the height of his popularity, Ricky tried his hand at movies, appearing in the western Rio Bravo with John Wayne. He turned 18 during the filming, and Wayne celebrated by playfully throwing Ricky into a sack of horse manure. Do you think pranks and practical jokes are funny?
Some things, sure; I don't think I'd like to be thrown into a sack of shit, though!
8) In 1959, when this song was popular, the St. Lawrence Seaway was completed. It connects Canada to our Great Lakes. Without looking it up, can you name all 5 Great Lakes?
Oh, yeah. I've been to Erie and Ontario multiple times, having grown up near Syracuse, New York. I haven't been to the others yet, though.
9) Random question – You drive past a local motel and see the car of a very married friend right there in the lot. Would you ask her about it?
NOPE! Not my circus; not my monkeys.
So now back to Cloudy... they're at the Jell-O scene. Awww... (I'm alone here, aren't I?)
Happy weekend, everybody! I hope you've all a wonderful weekend. I'm glad you've found your way here, but if you'd like to see what all the other Sat9ers posted, please go here, too.
Saturday 9: God Bless America
Unfamiliar with Deanna Durbin's rendition of week's tune? Hear it here.
Memorial Day is the federal holiday designated to honor American service people who died in battle.
1) Memorial Day was introduced after the Civil War. Originally called Decoration Day, this is when memorials, as well as the graves of veterans, are to be decorated with flags and flowers on this day to show our appreciation. Is there a war memorial in your neighborhood?
So, not exactly in our neighborhood, but modeled after the Vietnam Memorial in D.C., Boise has Veterans Memorial Park. We haven't been there yet, but we've been to M.K. Nature Center right near it. Maybe on Monday, that park is where you'll find us.
2) Andrew Johnson, our 17th President, was in office the first time Memorial/Decoration Day was celebrated. Have you ever met one of our 45 Presidents?
I have not. But I would not mind meeting President Obama, of any of them! Or Carter. I think I'd really hit it off with both of them. You know, once they got past my excessive chattiness and my neuroses!
3) According to the AAA, more than 30 million Americans will hit the road this weekend and drive more than 50 miles. Will you be traveling far from home this weekend?
No, not really, because we're closing on this house on June 3rd. We really need to save our pennies for that!
4) Memorial Day kicks off the summer season. What's your favorite picnic food?
Well, you know what, I couldn't decide between a beautiful, fresh fruit salad, or sandwiches. In the end, I decided to go with some delightful vegetarian finger sandwiches. I love finger sandwiches. Reminds me of the times I had high tea aboard a Princess Cruise while going through the Panama Canal. After we move, I think I've got to elevate our picnic game.
5) As you answer these questions, is there an air conditioner or fan on?
I think either it's no to both, or the heat may be on low. I can't believe we're still using the heat when it's almost freakin' June! And I think there is still plenty of snow on the mountains. Why did you people let me move to Idaho?!!
6) Though she's belting out one of America's best loved patriotic songs, Deanna Durbin was born in Canada. Is there anyone in your family or circle of friends who wasn't born in the USA?
I have friends from all over. Some from living in the multi-cultural epicenter, Miami, for both college and then again from 2013-2017 with my family. Some from being a military wife - although none we've kept in touch with from our four short months in Guam, I do have many from the Philippines and, of course, more places. And yes a few Canadian friends are in the mix, plus some from all over the States. This friend, here, is my girl Kristal from Trinidad and Tobago. We met in Geology class at the University of Miami, where I basically was a class clown and learned to taste rocks and minerals to see if they were a salt, like halite, or something else. (Meanwhile, in every other science class I've had, the rule was: Don't put anything in your mouth!) Kristal eventually came to nickname me "Comic Relief," because we never got a lot done together but always had a ton of laughs.
7) No longer a household name, Ms. Durbin was once one of the biggest stars in the country. One of her most popular films was 1937's One Hundred Men and a Girl, which was nominated for a Best Picture Oscar. Recommend a movie that you really like, but don't think many Saturday 9ers have seen.
Hmm. Have y'all seen Hidden Figures? Excellent movie. I took my daughters to see it in the theater in 2017, shortly before we moved here to Idaho, and it is one that imprints on the memory. Also, I've never seen The Help, though, but I just watched my first episode of the Snoop Dogg and Martha Stewart collab (I forget what the show is called, but it's that cooking show, y'know?), and Octavia Spencer guested on it. Long story short, now I think I'm going to watch The Help on Amazon Prime. (Happy birthday, Octavia! You're the same age as my husband!)
8) Back in 1938, Deanna Durbin had her handprints cemented in front of the TCL Chinese Theater on Hollywood Blvd. Have you ever visited that Los Angeles tourist attraction?
I have not. Yet. I've been in and out of L.A. a few times (above, in 2008, when my now-17yo daughter Chloë participated in an international acting convention and won several awards), and I've seen the Hollywood sign and the Walk of Fame... but I have not made it here yet. I always leave a "yet," because I decided as a young child that I wanted to visit everywhere in the world before I'm dead. Might have to live forever, though; it's a big world!
9) Random question: What food did you hate as a child, but enjoy now?
Artichokes! Avocados. Beans. Oh, my, it looks like I could go through the whole alphabet with vegetables, here. (It's amazing I've been a vegetarian, or vegan, or pescetarian at least, for over 23 years, seeing as vegetables were not very important to our family when I was growing up!) I have three artichokes in the fridge right now - huge ones! - that have gone brown on the tips. I completely forgot about them, dammit. I'm considering giving one a go right now... but it's 6:18 AM here. Would you?
Thank you guys for stopping by. I love it when you do. Have a good weekend. A safe weekend. But most importantly, if you're American, please stop and remember those who fought and died while in the military while you're picnicking, swimming, and enjoying the unofficial start to Summer. ✌️
Hey, everyone. Welcome back! I've missed a few weeks during a family crisis, but I think we're on a big upswing right now. I've missed y'all so much!
Not to go on and on about that, please visit Saturday 9 and link up here if you'd like to join us this week!
Up On The Roof
1) JT sings that, when the world gets him down, he goes up on the roof to find peace. When you're "feeling tired and beat," what do you do to cheer yourself up?
First, I assess whether I'm tired and need a nap. If not, I listen to music and try to get things done. Music is so important to me on an emotional level.
2) He sings that, at night, the stars put on a show for free. Are you economizing, or sticking to a budget?
Oh yeah. Definitely sticking to a tight budget over here!
3) In addition to recording this song for his album, Flag, James Taylor surprised the song's composer, and his good friend. Carole King by performing it the night she received her Kennedy Center Honor (see link above). Tell us about a good turn a friend has done for you recently.
My best friend, Shana, has helped me a lot more than she realizes. A concert violist and violinist, orchestra conductor, music teacher, and all-around generous person has helped me out of my recent existential crisis by making me appreciate classical music and her abilities. Getting outside of my own head and discovering this new love has done me so much good. Thank you, Shana!
4) James Taylor and Carole King have been good friends for decades, but they have never been romantically involved. Do you have platonic friends of the opposite sex?
Sure I do. A lot of them. But I mostly have to keep them at a distance, since my husband is of the jealous type.
5) James was born in the Boston hospital where his father worked as a resident physician. Are there any doctors or nurses in your family?
Haha, no. But my daughter, Chloë, wants to go into nursing. I think she'd be great at it. I hope she is happy in whatever she does!
6) When James was young, his family moved to Chapel Hill, NC. James has vivid memories of how beautiful the area was in all four seasons. What's your favorite time of year?
Summer is by far my favorite. I've tried to enjoy the other seasons more, but it's hard for me. I need a lot of sunlight. I need warmth. I need the beauty of flowers and green and Spring growth. I'm so relieved we are well into March now, and I have my eyes peeled waiting for our tulips to emerge!
7) In 1979, when this recording was popular, ESPN launched. Do you often watch that cable sports channel?
No. I've only ever put it on accidentally!
8) Also in 1979, the Voyager spacecraft sent photos back to earth that revealed Jupiter's rings. Without looking it up, can you name all the planets in our solar system?
Easily. I remember learning about the solar system in Grade Two. Jupiter has been my favorite planet ever since then. I can name them all in order - although I still resent having to leave off Pluto! Poor little dwarf planet. Anyway, yes.
9) Random question: Our Saturday 9 Wizards give you a choice -- you can be 20 years old and gorgeous, 30 years old and brilliant, or 40 years old and rich. Which do you choose?
Well, damn, that's a tough one! I want all of those, at all of those ages! I've wanted all of those things in my life, sure, but I've always been grateful for my brain. So I would choose to be 30 years old and (continue to be) brilliant. Great question, Sam!
So glad to be back! Thanks for stopping by, everyone. XOXO
Saturday 9: Valentine (1993) Unfamiliar with this week's tune? Hear it here.
This song was specially chosen for the Saturday 9 closest to Valentine's Day.
1) This is a love song written by Willie Nelson for his young son. Have you sent any Valentines this year to someone you love who isn't a romantic partner?
Well, not this year, but I've often given Valentines to my kiddos in previous years; does that count? Sure it does, if it counts for Willie! As for this picture, it's still a work in progress, but it's part of a Valentine my 13yo Sophia made for 15yo Jack. He just bought himself this electric guitar kit, so she made him a handmade guitar pick and guitar keyring to go along with it. There's more, but I think this alone is pretty cool!
2) Today that little boy, Lukas, is a singer/songwriter who wrote eight of the songs for the 2018 A Star Is Born soundtrack. Have you seen the Bradley Cooper/Lady Gaga big screen romance?
Not yet! I'm waiting for next Tuesday, the 19th, when it comes out on Netflix. Can't wait!!! Right now, I'm watching Bohemian Rhapsody, another movie I've been truly looking forward to watching.
3) On Valentine's Day in 1876, Alexander Graham Bell patented the first telephone. Whom did you most recently speak to on the phone?
I spoke to the receptionist at a dermatologist's office. Got a few spots on my back that are concerning.
4) Penicillin was also introduced on Valentine's Day (in 1929). When you get a shot, do you look away when the needle touches your skin?
I sure do! I'm as chickenshit as they come.
5) According to legend, a gift of red roses signifies love and romance. When did you last purchase flowers or plants? Did you buy them for yourself, or someone else?
So we're having the kids learn about gardening as part of a study of plants this year in our homeschool, Sweet Pea Academy, so Hubs and I just bought them some succulents from Trader Joe's to start off their little personal gardens. Some are taking better care of them than others!
I want to get them this collection of succulents eventually, and a bunch of cute pots like maybe a few of these:
OR maybe even these cuties:
... but when we can afford it. 😏
6) This week's artist, Willie Nelson, can trace his family tree back to the Revolutionary War. Captain John Nelson served with the Minutemen back in 1776. If you could go back in time to witness any great moment in American history, which would you choose?
I wish I'd borne witness to Abraham Lincoln delivering the Gettysburg Address.
7) Before he became a musical success, Willie was a door-to-door salesman, peddling first Bibles, then vacuum cleaners. INC magazine tells us that the traits of successful salespeople include resilience and good listening skills. Do you think you'd make a good sales person?
No way in hell. I've tried, and I'm terrible at it!
8) In 1993, when this song came out, Saved by the Bell aired its series finale. Crazy Sam likes to tease her brother because he once admitted to her that he has seen all 86 episodes of this teen sitcom. Is there a show that you believe you've seen every episode?
I'm pretty sure I've seen all of The Big Bang Theory, but that doesn't stop me from watching the syndicated reruns on
9) Random question - We're having milkshakes! What's your favorite flavor?
No milk for me. Lately we've been drinking a lot of different vegan smoothies, so experimentation is the name of the game. I haven't gotten around to making any milkshakes with plant-based milks yet, although we've got all kinds of those milks (cashew, almond, soy, pea - unflavored, flavored, etc.) in the fridge right now!
Howdy ho, y'all! The girls and I are re-watching old episodes of The Big Bang Theory, so I guess since I've seen all these before, it's a good time to answer some fun questions. So let's giddy-up!
What are some small things that make your day better?
Silliness and happiness of my kiddos! I love it when my crew are happy! ♥
What shows are you into?
Well, in addition to TBBT, mentioned in my intro, we of course also love Young Sheldon. We also watch Blackish, A Million Little Things, and obviously Jeopardy! Rob and I have had a nightly Jeopardy! date since we first got married 18 years ago. I think funny and definitely smart men are way sexier than anyone else. 😍 What TV channel doesn’t exist but really should?
An LGBTQ+ network dedicated to the needs, issues faced, and public awareness for this community. We'd watch!
Who has impressed you most with what they’ve accomplished?
Oh, maybe my 15-year-old son Jack. He's been working at a nearby McDonald's for about 9 months now, and he's just informed me, as of Thursday, that he's gotten a second raise and has been promoted to Crew Trainer! I was shrieking on the phone when he called me up and delivered this news. All of this is so exciting to me because he's on the Autism Spectrum and has learning disabilities. Go, Jack!!
What age do you wish you could permanently be?
Let's see... maybe about 36, like I was here. I was at my thinnest, and because I was raised to believe that my worth (and therefore my self-worth) were inversely proportional to my weight, my happiest. I would love to get down to that size again, but meanwhile, I'm working on learning to accept and love who I am, whatever size I may be. (And age!)
What TV show or movie do you refuse to watch?
Real Housewives of Anything
What is something that is considered a luxury, but you don’t think you could live without?
My phone! I looooove my Samsung Galaxy S9... and I've loved my Galaxy since the S2! Or was my first one the S3? Hmm, I forget. Like it matters! 😂
What’s your claim to fame?
I'm the only stay-at-home mom marine biologist I know! 😉
What’s something you like to do the old-fashioned way?
I love to bake homemade bread! Which reminds me, I need to feed the sourdough starter!
What’s your favorite genre of book or movie?
For movies, I confess, I love a good romcom. I like a lot of different movies genres, though, so that's not all I like. As for books, I love a good novel that really makes me think and feel. I like a book that makes me laugh and makes me sob. That's the best.
How often do you people watch?
If I'm in public, I'm definitely people-watching!
What have you only recently formed an opinion about?
I've become more and more strongly convicted about my (family's) decision to go vegan. I hadn't, however, considered the yarn with which I knit. So I've just decided if I'm going to talk the talk, I need to walk the walk: I'll finish whatever projects I've already begun, and then I need to cull the fibers that aren't vegan. Most animal fibers are gained in a much crueler fashion than many people know. So I'll sell the animal fibers and use that money purchase cruelty-free yarns!
What are you interested in that most people haven’t heard of?
Elasmobranch ecomorphology, I'm guessing...
What’s the farthest you’ve ever been from home?
I don't really have a distinct, specified "home," per se... I would say "home" is wherever Hubs is, wherever my family is. My home is his heart.
What is the most heartwarming thing you’ve ever seen?
♥ An old couple in love ♥
What is the most annoying question that people ask you?
I'm 42 years old, and I still get asked, on the phone, "Can I please speak to your mother?" Bitch, please, I am the mother! I can't get mad, I mean, I do have a high-pitched baby voice, but it does get annoying. Especially when Rob himself called me up and, thinking I was Chloë, said, "Let me speak to your mother." 😂
What could you give a 40-minute presentation on with absolutely no preparation?
Parent bereavement and/or Infant Loss
If you were dictator of a small island nation, what crazy dictator stuff would you do?
I would ban tobacco/nicotine use of any kind, make recycling mandatory, and... all food would be plant-based.
What is something you think everyone should do at least once in their lives?
Welcome back to Saturday 9! Be sure and link up here to join in with the rest of us this week!
Saturday 9: I Forgot to Remember to Forget (1955) Unfamiliar with this week's tune? Hear it here. In honor of Elvis' birthday (January 8.)
1) Elvis sings that he thinks about this girl all the time. What person or topic is on your mind this Saturday?
Being vegan. It's Veganuary 2019, and I suddenly find myself on this unexpected mission to do the most good I can for myself, for my family, for my family, for my fellow man, and for our home, planet Earth. I'm in the middle of writing a post about it, but I'm finding it hard to convey the right sense of urgency without an enormous dose of being judgmental.
2) He wants to forget the day he met his girl, but simply can't. Think about someone very important in your life. Did you know right away that they were going to be influential?
This is Victor, a man I went to college with at the University of Miami back in the mid-90s. We lived on the same hall of the same floor of the same dorm for a while and became fast friends. Little did I know, he would be the reason I met my husband of 18 years. Without him, I wouldn't have had our four beautiful children!
Since this week's song is about memories, let's check on how well you recall events in your own life.
3) What was the first concert you ever attended?
I can never remember whether it was Whitney Houston at the New York State Fair (she originally canceled during the fair, I think due to illness, and then we went to the reschedule in October when she performed despite heavy rain) or Bon Jovi, also in Syracuse, New York. Concert ticket images indicate that they may have been the same year.
4) Where did you get your first piercing? (Not only where on your body, but who did the deed and where did they do it?)
All of my piercings are above the neck... so far. ;) First, I got my earlobes pierced, at a place in the mall, probably, for my eighth birthday. Since then, I got a second and third hole pierced at more piercing spots in malls. I then got the cartilage in my left ear pierced at a piercing shop in south Miami-Dade County's Dadeland mall - do not do this! Go to a professional piercing artist, often at a tattoo shop - and after a lot of pain and many infections, I let it close up. I got a fourth hole pierced at that same time in the right ear. When I was 21, my then-roommate and friend Shannon and I skipped work to go get matching nostril piercings at a tattoo parlor near Busch Gardens in Tampa, Florida. Finally, two decades later, I have just gotten my septum and right tragus pierced by the piercer, Tatt, at Justin Abel Tattoo in Mountain Home, Idaho. I love them!
5) What's the name of the bank where you had your first checking account?
The evil Bank of America. Horrors!
6) Tell us about your first bicycle.
I remember it had training wheels, streamers, and a basket. I did not want to be stuck on training wheels forever, but I was having a hard time progressing past them. When I was six, we moved from Monroe, New York, to Syracuse, New York; I remember taking off those training wheels and riding around the giant moving truck, holding on to the truck when I needed to and trying not to crash into the mailboxes. That moving truck helped me succeed!
7) Who received the first text you ever sent?
I'm sure it had to have been Rob, in 2003. That's when I got my first cell phone.
8) What had you been drinking when you suffered your first hangover?
Shots of Goldschläger. I was 17.
9) Whose was the first wedding you ever attended?
July 13th, 1985, my father married for the third time, to my stepmother the evil bitch from hell, just over one year after my mother suddenly died. I was eight years old and the youngest person in that wedding. We four girls wore coordinating dresses in pastel blue, pink peach, and lavender. I can't even remember which was mine. I don't want to.
I'm watching old episodes of Three's Company, eating vegan "mozzarella," and debating whether to get in the shower to take Sophie to her riding lesson. I really should. She's got these new breeches that fit beautifully, but I want to see how they perform for her in action!
Welcome back, homeslices! 🤣 I woke up sick as a DAWG today 😞😭🤧😷, so I'm not feeling the (self) love. I know just being "here" with all of y'all will cheer me up, though, so let's bring it! 😍🤩💗💖 Link up here if you'd like to play along with us this weekend, or want to check out all the other amazing thieves among us!
What did you do last year that you had not done before?
Well, since two of my kiddos came out late last year as gay or bisexual, the three of us attended the Boise Pride Festival this past summer. It was SO fun, so loving, so joyous, and so inclusive. I loved every moment of it, and I am so proud of my girls for having the strength and courage to embrace their true selves. ♥
Did you keep your New Year's Resolutions/goals for the year and will you make/set more for next year? What are they? What are your new ones?
I'm sure I set some, but I don't remember what they were! I'll probably set more for next year, but I haven't done so yet. I'll keep ya posted! 🙃
Did anyone you know give birth? Or become pregnant? Or adopt?
My good friend Stephanie, who first was my kids' babysitter in Virginia Beach, when they were itty bitty, is pregnant with her fourth son!
And my high school pal, Lora, gave birth to her second son this year. Her kiddos are so cute! It's the year of boys! ♥ (I'm sure there are plenty more, but I'm forgetful.)
Did anyone you know die? Or have a serious illness/injury?
Gosh, I can't think of anyone who died - I hope I'm not forgetting! Aside from myself, Hubs was diagnosed with prostate cancer earlier this year and had surgery to remove the prostate. The recovery was heinous for him, and he had another surgery after that to repair the perforated bladder and fix the internal bleeding happening after the first surgery and on and on... it was just terrible for him. 😢
Also, someone on his side of the family is in a serious breast cancer battle right now, and we are thinking of her all the time, wishing her well.
What places have you visited?
Well, the hospital for one - a LOT! heh heh
We visited the Boise Ronald McDonald House on multiple occasions to make donations and take tours. This is a cause that's near and dear to our hearts (Dammit, Gal, I left it off your annual charity round-up post! DUHHHHHHHH!!) because we stayed in one while Chloë was in the NICU in Pensacola for 10 days. It's an amazing place. Visit one and I guarantee your heart will melt.
We drove out to Wasatch Sport Horses in Eagle, Idaho, many, many times for Sophia's riding lessons. Our new second home!
We went to many lessons at Chloë's fencing club, until she decided not to continue at the end of the season.
Listen, y'all, I could go on and on. And on!
Any new pets? Lost a pet?
Yes; critters we've lost this year:
We lost Rob's gentle giant, Henry, to a suspected sudden asthma attack. It was very sad.
We lost both of Chloë's beloved guinea pigs, Alexander Sirius and James Theodore, on the same day to unknown causes. She feels devastated and blames herself. 😢
Jack's old gerbil, Lucy, who lived a good, long, loved life with him, passed away peacefully. She is missed.
And finally, we lost all but one of our 2017 chickens, our White Silkie Athena, to a predator massacre. I was so crushed!
Critters we've gained this year:
We got 21 new rare-breed chicks in September. There's Athena keeping watch over the new babies. Two of them have since died, so we're at a 2018 flock of 20 chickens, currently.
Jack adopted this bunny-buns, Fudge, for his 4-H project this year. He's ridiculously soft!
And very shortly after that, Jack - an extremely conscientious pet owner - adopted Rocky so that Fudge could have a playmate. The two are still in separate cages, though, awaiting their neutering so they don't fight. Rocky's such a love! ♥
What would you like to have next year that you lacked this year (doesn't have to be a physical thing i.e. love, job security, peace of mind...)?
Well, aside from improved health, obviously, I would love to buy and move into a house of our own once again - like this one!. I yearn for it!
What date from last year will remain etched in your memory and why?
April 16th, 2018 - that's the date of Hubs' prostatectomy that sucked big ass. He's still recovering.
What was your biggest achievement last year?
I try to keep it lighter in my SS posts, but that's not always possible for me. So to answer this question: I realized and acknowledged that I was raised in a cult. I was an unwilling member for almost 21 years. And I went back to therapy, where I am finally in "intensive care" to undo the effects of the trauma, abuse, and brainwashing I've endured.
Did you get sick or injured?
Well, yeah! I have a lot of new diagnoses from this year. Mast Cell Activation Disorder, ME/CFS, and (possible, waiting to be genetically tested) Ehlers Danlos Syndrome among them... and since I'm now stumbly-bumbly all the time, lots of injuries from falling. I rely on my walker or wheelchair most of the time when I'm out of the house now.
What was the best thing you bought?
Well, I don't know! Lots of things, I guess, and I'm sure I'll get this wrong. I won, this week, a photography contest, wherein I was stacked up against several professional photogs, and for the prize I could get a $50 gift card to anywhere. I opted for P.F. Chang's, which we never get. I don't know why. But I snuck a slice of cheesecake in there, and WOW! That shizz was the bomb! And this is coming from a New Yawka who knows her cheesecake. Two thumbs up!
Oh! And I signed up for Grove Collaborative to get all kinds of good-for-us and good-for-the-earth stuff, and I'm really happy with our membership thus far. Their customer service is outstanding, and the products and prices are great! I'm a huge fan. If you want to sign up here, you'll even get a free 5-piece gift set. I loved mine!
Where did most of your disposable income go (money leftover after you pay for food, medical care, basic clothing, transportation and shelter)?
You say that as though there is any disposable income! 😂😂😂 Have you never tried to raise three hungry teenagers, 20 chickens, two dogs, three cats, and two bunny rabbits - not to mention the four score and seven prescription medications I take daily - on an enlisted veteran sailor's pension? BWAHAHAHA! But if so, we tend to spoil the pets. Especially the doggos. I mean, I love to get the chickens toys and chubby mealworms and stuff, watch the cats go insane on new catnip toys, etc., but the dogs! Nothing makes me happier than watching two butt-wiggling pooches get their BarkBoxes in the mail!! And oh, they know that that box is theirs, long before it gets opened. They just know. (I highly recommend it!)
What song will always remind you of last year?
"Girls Like You" by Maroon 5, featuring Cardi B (Gal, can we please, please, pleeeeeaaase do this song on Sat9 sometime?) is a song my 13yo daughter Sophia and I have played on the radio, YouTube, or whatever umpteen million times over and over. We sing along to every word and then, when Cardi B's part comes on, we blast it even louder and rap along to every word. I don't care how white we are, we rock that $h!t!
What do you wish you would have done more of?
My husband! 🤪😂😈
What do you wish you would have done less of?
Crying in pain (this photo is from Friday night, just hours ago, but represents many nights)
What was your favorite new TV program? Movie? Album/Songs? Or if you didn't pick up any new ones, what are you still watching/listening to? Any recommendations?
Well, I've finally really gotten into Bob's Burgers this year, and it's a good thing I did, because that $h!t is fookin' hilarious! I like to pretend I'm just like Linda, which I am, and I do both Linda's and Bob's and sometimes Tina's voices. If you're not watching it yet, why not?! You oughtta be. I DVR every episode. We all love it. Yeah. So.
Also, I recommend Ellen De Generes' new stand-up special, Relatable, on Netflix. I love her talk show, so I finally queued it up and am watching it right now. She swears, y'all! That's relatable!
What was the best book you read this year? How many did you read?
I'm reading Recipes for Repair right now, which I just started but bought about two years ago, to see if it will help any of my autoimmune disorders. It's hard. I'm having allergic reactions - sometimes anaphylaxis - to every single thing I eat lately, so I've just gotta do something! Plus, my therapist recommended I read something along these lines. I don't think I've read any other books this year! Shocking!
What did you do on your birthday and how old were you? Did you feel differently?
Well, first of all, I turned 42, and Chloë made me these birthday cupcakes. She baked Hubs' chocolate bundt cake - his favorite - too, and was really excited about doing both. Only, I was looking at these photos recently, and I just don't remember these cupcakes. I mean, I know I was there and must have taken the pictures and blown them out, but I cannot recollect them for the life of me. This is very distressing. My short-term memory has been stolen from me since I became ill in 2015, and I hate it!
Also, Hubs gave me a pedicure, which he often did during my pregnancies when I couldn't reach and now often does again since my joints are so stiff and painful. Yeah, he's a keeper. (Also, pssst! Robert! I'm due for another one!)
Chloë's birthday (9/7) is the day before mine (9/8), so we usually celebrate together by running around collecting all the billions of birthday freebies out there. Here are some from this year:
[click to embiggerate]
I'd list them out for you, but as you can see, um, it's kind of a lot.
What political or social issue stirred you the most?
I will always, first and foremost, be an environmental activist. Now, more than ever, it is crucial for denizens of Planet Earth to become acutely aware of what we as people are doing to harm the planet and what we as humans can do to remedy that.
Additionally, I am a Global Citizen, and I am dedicated to working for the causes of education for all; those that promote equality for women and girls; ending world hunger; and, bettering the health and sanitation practices around the world. I even get points for sharing the information I learn, and I've used those points to enter contests. This year alone, I've won two concerts: Amy Lee (of Evanescence) and Lindsey Sterling, which I'd entered for Chloë's sake - but I ended up winning the one in Phoenix, Arizona, and we could of course not make it there. The other concert was just recently, here in Boise: Metallica, which I sent Rob and our 15yo son Jack to. They had a blast!
Who was the most interesting new person you met?
Hmm. I don't know; I've met a lot of interesting folks. I'll say my new orthopedist, Dr. Alex Homaecheverria. Not only is this doctor smoking hot (I'm married, but I mean, c'mon! I'm not dead!), but he's relatable. Great bedside manner. And he genuinely seems interested in truly helping me improve.
What changed at your job?
Well. For one, Chloë, Sophie, and I started a specialty candle company called Every Wick Way on November 1st! I'm so excited about this! Most of our items are listed in our Etsy shop, but I'm still working on the website for Every Wick Way. Check it out! ;)
What changed in your home?
Well, we got those 21 baby chickies from the hatchery, so they would need a place to live, right? After forever and a day (seriously; we're talking over a year), Hubs and another military vet friend got together and built it basically in a day. It's not perfect, but it's pretty great, and so far we've avoided another slaughter. Whew!
Describe how a relationship changed.
Well, I'm like this ^^^ so it's completely surreal for me to read things like this. Anyway, I've been distancing myself emotionally from my father more than I ever have in my life. It's been hard. He's noticed, too, and wrote a note to me about it in our Christmas card. Such tomfuckery. I'll not have it!
Do you think you are still the same person that you were at the beginning of the year? How so?
No. Of course not. At the end of every year I hope I have grown and learned so much during that year that I am a completely new and more enlightened person by the end.
Summarize the year in three words or less. Bonus points for doing it in one word. Explain.
How have people around you changed?
Well, I don't know about everyone's internal dialogue or whatnot, but I feel like this year, as I've become even more self-aware and adulty than ever, I feel that people are changing the way they respond to and interact with me. I feel it every day. It seems like some people actually like me, which I never really thought could be true. It's delightful.
What have you learned throughout the year?
Well, I've definitely learned that I do, in fact, have limitations. And also that getting older sucks, and I do not care for being forty-freakin'-two!
What was your favorite outfit for warm weather? Cooler weather?
Something cool, comfortable, and hopefully, cute!
Anything remotely warm, comfortable, and hopefully cute! ;)
Did you learn any new crafts or techniques? What was your favorite thing you made?
Oh yes, of course! For Every Wick Way, the girls and I jointly learned how to make soy and beeswax candles and melts, and we're taking very explicit notes so that we can duplicate everything that turns out great. And most things do, because we're just amazing like that. ;) I'm always learning something new in the craft world. Every year, I've got a new thing going. I embrace change. Love it. Adore it!
What changed about your physical appearance? (Hair? Wrinkles? New makeup style? Etc)
So let's see... Since the top picture was taken a couple of years ago, I've gained a little (read: not a little) weight, my eyes are getting greener as I get older, I've at least temporarily stopped coloring my hair auburn (which I've been doing since my freshman year of college!), I started growing out my bangs for the first time ever in my live (but just got sick of it and trimmed them back to 'normal' this week, heh), pierced my septum, and pierced my tragus. Dang, when I read it back, it sounds like kind of a lot, no?
What are your hopes and dreams for the new year?
Well, I'd love to say I wanna buy a house (but I said that already) and that I want to lose weight (but when don't I?); however, instead, I hope to bring awareness about and then somewhat defeat the health struggles constantly plaguing me:
I have multiple Autoimmune Diseases, including: Raynaud's Syndrome, Mast Cell Activation Disorder, Chronic Spontaneous Urticaria, and Anticardiolipin/Antiphospolipid-Antibody Syndrome, for starters - but now I'm blessed with a medical expert in Asthma, Allergies, and Immunology who is doing the right tests and looking at the right things.
I struggle with Fibromyalgia, but now I'm blessed with a medical expert who brings me in and gives me Trigger Point Injections whenever I call up and say I need them.
I have Bipolar I with Psychosis, but now I am blessed with an expert psychiatrist who listens to me and knows what to tweak when I tell her what I am experiencing, as well as an incredible therapist who is helping me navigate the intense, childhood-long traumas that (I believe) led to the bipolar, along with severe PTSD, OCPD, and Generalized Anxiety Disorder.
I have Chronic Lyme Disease and am daily trying to manage the extreme pain in my bones and joints from that, while trying to explain to every medical professional under that sun that just because I was treated with antibiotics for two weeks after I tested CDC-positive for Lyme, that I am not "cured." Some listen. Much, much more education is needed on this subject, and it is intentionally being squelched. Very frustrating!
I probably have Ehlers Danlos Syndrome, but I'm waiting for genetic testing to rule it in or out, which takes up to a year for the appointment in these parts. I have hypermobility and am constantly having dislocations and subluxations, along with just about every other symptom up there - but fortunately, I am now blessed with a knowledgeable physical therapist and a stellar (and hot - see above) orthopedist who have many tricks up their respective sleeves to try and help a girl out.
And now, I also have Myalgic Encephalomyelitis, but I'm now blessed with an ME/CFS specialist in Salt Lake City, whom I now see every other month or so, who has made it her life's work to care about those of us with this devastating illness.
And that's not even my whole list. So when someone (I believe from here, but I'm certainly not going to name names) tells me to "snap out of it," or when I get letters from my fng father telling me not to be a drain on society and make something of myself... well, it kinda breaks me. That is so soul-crushing. So, you guys, just don't do that to chronically ill people, okay? That is just not cool!
Whew! That took me hours upon hours to do! Well, okay, I watched the Ellen DeGeneres Netflix special Relatable. And then the whole family sat down with me to watch the Netflix documentary What The Health? which everyone should totally watch, and they all - even JACK!!! - decided pretty much on the spot that we're all gonna be vegans now. I'm so excited about that. Okay, and then Chloë and I stayed up all night watching Titanic, and finally the girls and I just wrapped up Crazy Rich Asians, both on Amazon Prime Video. So I was a little distracted... Hee.
Hiya! So this is last week's SS, but I didn't get a chance to participate, and I'm in a blogging mood right now, so here we go. Link up here if you want to play along last week! (heh. I know what I did there.)
I survived the Syracuse blizzard of 1993! There are still people there, and from there, who talk about it - and you can easily pull up a jillion images from it on Google. That was my last year in Baldwile (a suburb of Syracuse) before college, and it got down to -53ºF during that blizzard. It completely cemented my decision to go to the University of Miami for college!
2. What's for dinner tonight?
Damned if I know. It's 7:34 AM on Saturday, and I haven't even begun to think about it. I took out some ground turkey a few days ago for sliders, but we never cooked it. It's probably gone bad by now...
3. Would you consider moving to Australia?
Hell yeah, I would! In fact, I told my family I was moving there if Donald Trump was elected in 2016. And he was, but we're still here. In freakin' Idaho instead. Uprooting ourselves and moving around the world proved not to be cost-effective for the time being. Bleh.
4. What was your favorite subject in high school?
Biology, obviously, but I also loved Calculus. Math is one of my favorite subjects, and I absorbed Calc like a sponge. Bring it! #Nerd
5. How many hours a day is your tv on?
Zero, currently. :\ Stupid disposable technology! We have a fairly new, big-screen Samsung smart TV and... it just went dead. Completely dead. No picture, no sound. And it's out of warranty. And we are on a DirecTV contract that is going to waste, so I hope we can do something about this soon. I didn't even get to watch the Midterm election coverage! Or the new episodes of The Big Bang Theory and Young Sheldon. Oy vey. #FirstWorldProblems
6. Have you ever received an award?
I've won all kinds of academic awards, and some others, but my absolute favorite award was winning "Class Giggler" in third grade. I still have that certificate!
7. Whats your mouse pad look like?
I do not use a mouse pad, currently. I'm on a bamboo lap desk on my laptop, and I use the little thumb controller thingy. I miss my desktop computer!!! Wah.
8. How many browser tabs do you have open right now?
All of those (sorry for the blurry screenshot), plus two more in a separate window for my music streaming and my super-secret Christmas lists for everyone. Oops, not so secret now! So that makes what, 20?
9. If you are a parent, have you or did you ever put Vicks VapoRub on your children under the age of 2?
It's possible? But I can't specifically remember, sorry. I like my Puffs Plus Vicks tissues, but nobody else in the house does, so I hear a lot of wanking about that...
10. As an adult, do you like the scent of Vicks VapoRub?
I don't mind it. I have allergies, asthma, and all kinds of autoimmune issues, so I get congested a lot. Vicks helps.
11. If you had to pick one insect to infest your house for 1 day and after that day they would just suddenly vanish, which insect infestation would you pick?
Yeesh, that's a complicated one for me. As someone with chronic Lyme Disease, I hate deer ticks and the other creatures that carry the Lyme-causing spirochete with a passion. I'd love to have them eradicated from the earth, but... can we leave our house for that one day it's full of deer ticks? And then they're gone when we come back? I'm down with that - as long as the entire ecosystem doesn't fall apart from their sudden disappearance.
12. What color is your underwear that you are wearing right at this moment?
I'm wearing red undies, but they look nothing like those, and my body looks nothing like that model's. And I'm okay with that!
That was fun. Now I should probably check the 600+ emails I've been neglecting and then get back to a project that is currently under wraps. I can't wait to talk about it, though!
Hey, y'all. Welcome back. My youngest, Sophia, and I drove 5 hours down to Salt Lake City from Boise yesterday (and back at night), for an appointment with my ME/CFS specialist, and on the way back we were treated with the most glorious sunset I have ever seen in my entire life. We were in awe the entire time, I still am. It was breathtaking.
Link up here if you want to play along this weekend!
Saturday 9: It Must Be Him (1967) Unfamiliar with this week's tune? Hear it here.
1) This song is about a woman waiting impatiently for a phone call. Do you consider yourself patient?
2) Other women (most notably Shirley Bassey and Dottie West) have recorded this song. Harry James and Doc Severinson did instrumental versions. But there's no record of a male singing "Oh dear God! It must be her! Or I shall die!" Do you think that's because waiting for the phone to ring is more "a chick thing," and men simply don't do it?
Having roomed with a few guys during my summer breaks from college, I know for sure that is not just a thing girls do. Guys do it, too. Maybe women are just more willing to show that vulnerability in song.
3) This recording enjoyed a sudden surge of popularity after 20 years when it was included on the soundtrack of Moonstruck, the 1987 film that won Cher an Oscar. Have you seen Moonstruck?
Yeah, but I remember virtually none of it. I'm really bad at remembering movies.
4) This week's featured artist, Vikki Carr, was born in El Paso, TX. El Paso can proudly proclaim itself one of America's safest cities. What can your hometown be proud of?
Boise is The City of Trees, and there really are a lot of them. Autumn is brilliant here. And the people here are the nicest of anywhere I've lived.
5) She was a staple on Jerry Lewis' Labor Day Telethon, raising funds for the Muscular Dystrophy Association by performing this song. Is your TV on right now? If so, what are you watching?
No. It's not. I wish it was. On Wednesday night, our 4-year-old TV went out. Rob called Samsung while I was in Salt Lake, and they said that it was out of warranty and not their problem. So now we have this fancy smart TV that is basically just taking up space on our wall, a cable contract, and no budget to replace the tube just now because it's Christmas. And it's the last season of Big Bang. Wah!
6) In 1971, Vikki fulfilled a dream of hers by establishing the Vikki Carr Scholarship Foundation. Every year the foundation awards Hispanic American students money to use toward higher education. She says it's her way of returning "the support and encouragement she received from others" early in her career. If you could establish a charitable foundation, what cause would you like it to benefit?
A friend of my girls' and mine is raising money for Planned Parenthood this month. I donated $5 for each of us wimmens!
Also, I am still figuring out whether to donate a flock of chicks, geese, or ducks to a project family through Heifer International. I love this great organization. I donate to them through Amazon Smile, too.
7) In 1967, when this song was popular, Dr. Christiaan Barnard performed the first heart transplant. Today, one of the most common surgeries performed in the United States is the coronary artery bypass surgery. Have you had any surgeries?
Three Caesarian sections, gastric bypass surgery, gall bladder removal, hysterectomy, tonsillectomy, hiatal hernia repair, and several dental surgeries. So a few.
8) Also in 1967, the RMS Queen Mary was retired after 31 years of service. Have you ever traveled by cruise ship?
Hey kids, what are we all talking about in here? Can I join?
Well, if you came to read Sunday Stealing, you've come to the right place. Aaaaand... because I forgot what day it was yesterday, Saturday 9 is here, too. I've missed a couple weeks, I think.
We've had a lot of wildfires this summer, and my asthma was horiblé. Now that weather conditions have improved, I'm breathing easier again. (Rob totally brought me to the ER because I couldn't breathe and thought I had pneumonia, but it was an asthma attack! I felt so dumb. But in my defense, something I've had my whole life didn't get properly diagnosed until last year!)
1) This song is about a woman who works hard as a waitress. What's the hardest job you've ever had?
After thinking about this for a minute, I'd have to say teaching freshman biology while I was working on my PhD at USF. That was really the first time I truly had to confront my weaknesses in academia. I found out quickly that teaching was hard. Like, hard hard. It was a totally new kind of challenge for me.
2) The lyrics tell us she has worked at this job for 28 years. What's the longest you stayed with one employer?
Other than motherhood (It'll be 17 years this Friday!), it would have to be working at various Publix supermarkets in Florida. Three different ones: in Coral Gables, in St. Petersburg, and then again in Panama City Beach. I liked it more than teaching! Heh.
3) Donna Summer was inspired to write this song during an awards show. She ducked into the bathroom and met the elderly ladies' room attendant, whose job it was to make sure the room the spotless, the complimentary hairspray and moisturizer was abundant, and there was a hot towel for every celebrity who used the facilities. "Wow," Donna thought, "she works hard for those tips." Who is the last person you tipped?
I feel like it's been kind of a while. Maybe it was the pizza delivery guy from Pie Hole? I think so. We'll go with that.
4) Early in her career, Donna was in the touring company of the musical Hair. It played in Munich for so long that she became fluent in German. What's the longest you have ever lived away from home?
Well, that's hard to say. I've never had a home that I've wanted to go back to after I left! I have no parents' house to return to when I'm sad or down and out or anything, so... I guess I'll use this concept a little loosely. When Rob and I got married, and Chloë was a wee babe, we moved to Guam for four months. Just four months! 5) Sam's dad is naturally outgoing and enjoys striking up conversations with waitresses, librarians, the checker at the supermarket, etc. Sam is always polite but more private. Are you more like father or daughter?
Look at this guy, blowing a kiss! That's actually his Facebook profile picture! That's my dad. He strikes up conversations with everybody, too - and this lecherous old man also flirts - hard - with any cute young thing. Ugh. I'm an extroverted (but not much) introvert, so I'm more like daughter.
6) A little more than 10% of the American workforce is self-employed. Have you ever been your own boss?
I've done various things over the years. Like... back when we lived in Virginia Beach, I had a dessert business. However, I quickly learned that rather than something like this:
I'm better at smaller desserts more like this:
And now I want to make some petit fours! Too bad I sold off almost all of my baking tools when we moved to Miami and becoming broke was no joke!
7) Labor Day weekend may offer a golden opportunity for napping and sleeping in. Do you snore?
I love how it's always the women complaining about their husbands snoring! Why is that a thing? LOL... Yes, I snore; my hubs rarely does!
8) Will you be attending a Labor Day picnic or barbecue?
Y'know, I don't think so? But we will be going down to celebrate Japan Day at the local Basque Center (just trust me), so that will be fun. I hadn't even thought about what to do after that!
9) Labor Day traditionally marks the beginning of the fall. Will you be adding any new fall clothes to your wardrobe?
I'm sure I will. Every season we all (except Jack; he just wants me to pick out his clothes for him) go to the local ReStyle Animal Rescue Thrift Store. It's like this: they have a punch card. For every 5 donations AND 5 $10 in purchases, you get 50% off your entire next order. And every day, their great quality but already-low prices go even further down, with a different color tag being some percentage off for that day. And on top of that, we get a military discount! So I the girls shop 'til we drop and then come home and show the boys our goods. It's fun!
Well that was a good one, Sam! Thanks for the fun! I've been distracted by watching Chip and Joanna Gaines on Fixer Upper this morning. I'm very new (like, as of this summer) to their show, but it didn't take long for me to fall in love with them! He's so cute to her.
Time for some Sunday Stealing, which this week is oddly named Freaky Poptart! (Click the links to see other players' answers.)
What is one thing that you would change about yourself if you could?
There is not a lot about me I'd keep! I'm not my own biggest fan. But I would definitely change my temper. I'd love to be more mild-mannered than I am.
Name three exotic countries you would like to visit:
I would visit Japan, Australia, and Argentina! Oh, hell, I'll go anywhere 'long as you're buyin'!
What do you think the secret to life is?
I think the secret really is that you have to bring joy to others. The more joy you give out, the more joy that ;,; ,mcomes back to you. It's the good kind of vicious-cycle. I try to develop that sense of joy in each of my kids. (Although it's pretty hard for Jack.)
I'd have to say it was the Bob Dylan * John Mellencamp * Willie Nelson concert at the Norfolk Tides' baseball field back in Virginia. Bob Dylan is a huge favorite of Rob's, and he really wanted to go see them play. I was so thrilled to be able to take him, and he had a great time. I even liked their opening act, The Wiyos!
Song you can listen to over and over and not get tired of:
That changes all the time, but lately it has been "Girls Like You" by Maroon 5; I even like the Cardi B bit, and I'm not a huge Cardi B fan. It's catchy!
Worst movie music soundtrack or score:
My mind is a blank on this one.
A song you wish wouldn't get stuck in your head but always does:
Have you heard the Wayfair jingle on their commercials? There's a ton of them every commercial break on HGTV, it's so annoying... but also catchy.
Who was your FIRST date?
It was this guy, Ken, who was a year ahead of me in school. We went to the movies. I don't remember what we saw. Soon after that, we met up at this mall near my house, which was a total ghost town by that point... my first kiss. Now I know he is the biggest a-hole, but eh. You gotta know what bad is before you can realize how good good is, right?
And Rob is GOOD.
Do you still talk to your FIRST love?
Yeah, Ben and I are still Facebook friends... although I guess I've been asleep at that wheel, because it appears he just got married?!! I'm so shocked!
What was your FIRST alcoholic drink?
In my Senior year of high school, my older friends from work used to take me out a lot wherever they went - including to bars. I mean, I was only 17, so their trick was to get me drunk on shots of Goldschläger at one of their homes before going out to drink some more. We had a lot of fun times, and we made a lot of memories, but I obviously don't recommend that! I have more than one Goldschläger story. So, I don't like the smell of cinnamon much anymore!
What was your FIRST job?
I did a lot of babysitting first, but my first actual paycheck was from BigM market in Baldwinsville, New York. Fun times; I loved it and, for a while, my best friend Lisa worked in the deli while I ran the cash register. (I've worked in a lot of grocery stores! Winn-Dixie, too, in South Carolina - oh and also, for two days, Fred Meyer here in Boise!)
What was your FIRST car?
This picture almost makes me cry. I bought a red 1991 Ford Escort wagon in September 1993, when I was starting Senior year. My father basically stole it from me. It's not a happy memory.
Where did you go on your FIRST ride on an airplane?
Hm. I've been flying since birth practically, so I don't even really know! When we moved to Syracuse from Monroe, New York, we started flying back and forth to my mom's parents in New Jersey a lot. But I think we I had to have flown since I was knee-high to a grasshopper.
Who was your FIRST best friend & do you still talk?
My first two best friends were my sister Stacey our babysitter's daughter, Ursula. This is my sister with her (now about grown) daughters:
and this is my friend Ursula with her beautiful family:
And yes, I still talk to both.
Whose wedding did you attend the FIRST time?
It was my dad's to his new (now ex-) wife a year after my mother died. (They started dating three months after Mom died, and he still says my mom was his real true love, etc. Right, right.) My dress was pink; I think Stacey's was peach, Aarin (younger step-sister) had a blue one, and Mindy (older step-sister) wore purple. All matching but different pastel colors. Gag me. (Maybe that's why I hate pastel so much!)
Tell us about your FIRST roommate.
That would be Jen from Rochester, when we were freshman dorm-mates at the University of Miami. We hit it off right away and had a lot of fun. We are not still friends.
If you had one wish, what would it be (other than more wishes)?
I wish I didn't have to live in a world where my neighbors didn't keep taking the COEXIST sticker off my car! Because, y'know, they're the people that need to read it and heed it. (And then I wish we had a house of our own, again.)
What is something you would learn if you had the chance?
The girls and I are learning Latin together this year. I thought I would have a disadvantage over them because of speaking Spanish, but I really don't! In fact, Chloe is beating both of us, and Sophie is neck-and-neck with me. If I could, I would learn every language spoken in this world.
Did you marry the FIRST person you were in love with?
Nope, I married this dork:
He's so cheerful!
What were the first lessons you ever took and why?
These probably weren't my first lessons but the first ones I remember. After my mom died, she left her electric organ, like this one, behind. I couldn't bear to see it and let it just go to waste, so to help me keep my mother alive in my heart, I begged my dad to let me take lessons and use it. I did for a couple of years, but I never got terribly good at it. Then my stepmother came along, decided she didn't want it around anymore, and bought a sleek baby grand piano to put there instead. And she couldn't even play! F**k her.
What is the first thing you do when you get home?
The first thing I do when I walk in is hang up my keys on "the fish." See that arrow? Same thing, every time. On the other hand, when Rob drives, he never hangs up the keys, and they are often missing after that. Also, that fish is supposed to be for keys. Not multiple baseball hats, not multiple dog leashes, but keys. Although now that I have one of my girls' leis from Boise Pride hanging on my hook, I guess I can't say too much!
Ahhh, finally done. That was fun, but because I'm distracted by Fixer Upper, it's taken me forever! Man, I wish we could afford a fixer upper. And Chip and Joanna Gaines, of course.
Shout out of thanks! It was so unexpected when something from our daughter's Amazon wishlist, for her spendy Art program this year, showed up in the mail from you! I was moved to tears, so touched I was. Sophia was shocked, too. Thank you so much for doing that! Our fundraiser has kind of stalled out at $50 donated, and we still have several supplies and about $200 for the course left to go, so we were absolutely grateful for the help. You know who you are - you rock!
Heyyy! The Nanny! This used to be one of my favorite shows from the '90s. I still know most of the theme song. My favorite lyrics are toward the end: ♪ ♫ "She had style! She had flair! She was there! That's how she became... The Nannyyyyy!" ♫ ♪
Glad to have y'all back again this week. Link up here if you're playing along today!
1) This week's song is the theme from a sitcom that originally aired from 1993 to 1999. Were you a fan?
Oh, yes. I watched it all the time. And I had a huge crush on Mr. Sheffield!
2) The song tells us that Fran once worked in a bridal shop. Have you ever worked in a retail setting?
Oh, yes. Besides working for a number of years in three or four different successful grocery store chains, along with a stint at a gas station (which sucked), I was the dive shop manager for the dive operation on Key Biscayne, Florida, where I received my Open Water SCUBA certification. I did it all.
3) The kids in the Sheffield household appreciate their nanny's "joie de vivre," which is defined as "exuberant enjoyment of life." Are you feeling joie de vivre this morning?
I'm trying, I'm really trying, but I do have this agonizing tooth pain for which I'm on painkillers and antibiotics. I want them to just pull that eff-er! Hell, pull 'em all and give me dentures! I'm down with it! ;)
4) "The Nanny" is the colorful one, the one who wears red when everyone else wears tan. What color do you think you look best in?
I definitely feel like I look best in RED, but I think BLACK is my color, too. But I wear all kinds of colors, because life is too short for me to wear bland clothing. :P
5) The TV show, The Nanny, was the brainchild of actress Fran Drescher. She got the idea while visiting an old friend in London. Her friend's pre-teen daughter enjoyed having Fran as a confidante and shopping buddy. Do you enjoy shopping as a leisure activity? Or would you prefer to just dash into a store, grab what you need, and get out and go home?
I prefer to dash and go, but if I have the money to spend, I don't mind browsing a little. I don't want to be in there looking around all day or anything: BORING!
6) The friend Fran was visiting in London was Twiggy, who was the world's most famous model in the 1960s. Name another famous model.
Ms. Tyra Banks, for one, is quite lovely to behold.
7) The Nanny: The Complete Series is available on DVD on Amazon. It consists of 19 discs and takes 55 hours to watch, start to finish. What TV show have you recently binge watched?
I'm kind of going back and forth between two shows that I'm binge-watching:
The always-hilarious Bob's Burgers, and:
Cake Wars, which, if nothing else, serves to remind me how much talent and skill I did not possess during my stint as a cake shoppe owner! And it makes me hungry for cake. ;)
8) The Nanny theme was sung by Liz Callaway. Her father, the late John Callaway, was a long-time Chicago newscaster. Have you, or has a loved one, ever been on TV?
Yeah, my daugher Chloë has been on a number of things on TV, most notably an episode of A Haunting, which you can rent to watch on Amazon.com if you wish. ;) She's been in lots of other things, and she could probably "hit it big," but she's decided she no longer wants to act.
9) Random question -- Which of these adjectives comes closest to describing you: sexy, sophisticated or down-to-earth?
In the past, I'd have liked to have said "sexy," but I no longer feel that fits. Definitely not sophisticated. I guess that leaves down-to-earth for me! I think I am pretty approachable...
Thanks for a fun meme, Crazy Sam!
P.S. We have a small GoFundMe account, wherein we are trying to raise the funds for the courses and material supplies for my younger artist daughter, Sophia, for this coming homeschool year. We need just $300 more to purchase everything that's left, including the courses. More information can be found here:
OR, the Amazon Wish List for the supplies can be found here:
Hey, guys! You came back! I'm always excited when I (remember to) do a Saturday 9 or Sunday Stealing post on time, because it usually means I get to visit with my friends in the blogosphere. So I'm thrilled you're here.
1) This week's song is the theme from Kate and Allie, a sitcom that ran from 1984 to 1989. Were you a fan?
Oh, yes. I loved that show!
2) The show was about two divorced women who live and raise their children together. Were you ever a single parent? Were you raised by a single parent?
No, I've never been a single mom. Thank goodness, because even though I know I would find the strength, I don't have it innately. I was not raised by a single parent, either. I give single moms and dads a LOT of credit, because I know how soul-exhausting that must be.
3) Allie is proud that she can make a perfect cup of coffee: "Just the essence of the bean. No acidity." Kate is proud that she can belch the alphabet. What are you proud of?
I am proud of my ability to turn sticks and string into works of art!
4) Kate and Allie share half of a duplex in Greenwich Village. Many episodes had them doing laundry in the basement. Where are your washer and dryer?
We have a laundry room about smack-dab in the middle of our ranch-style house. Nothing special.
5) Kate was played by Susan St. James. She was familiar to viewers as the "wife" in McMillan and Wife. Without looking it up, do you know who played McMillan?
Actually, I'd never even heard of that show! :O
6) Allie was played by Jane Curtin. She was one of three women in the original Saturday Night Live cast. Without looking it up, can you name the other two?
Hm. Gilda Radner and... no. I don't know the third.
7) On the set, Jane Curtin ran a poker game for the cast and crew. Do you think winning at poker takes more luck or skill?
I'm not sure which it takes more of, but I've played poker and know that it definitely takes some skill. But luck definitely plays its part.
8) The Kate & Allie theme was cowritten and sung by John Lefler. Years later, Mr. Lefler wrote the theme for the Pokemon show. Is anyone in your life into Pokemon?
9) Random question: What's the last thing you whispered?
Oh, I don't know; I'm not a big fan of whispering. I usually only do it in jest.
I fell asleep halfway through writing this, because I was just exhausted! Fortunately, I'm still technically "early" for our time zone. ;) Have a lovely weekend, everyone!
1) This week's song is the theme from The Mary Tyler Moore Show, a sitcom that originally aired from 1970 to 1977. Were you a fan?
I'm sorry, I don't really think I've ever watched it. (I was born in 1976.)
2) The song tells us that Mary Richards can turn the world on with her smile. Yet the real-life Mary Tyler Moore said she was uncomfortable with her "wide mouth." If you could improve on one of your facial features, which would you choose?
I really don't have much of a lower jaw; I feel like I have no chin! In fact, I used to say that I married my husband for his strong jaw, and he married me for my flat ears.
3) We also hear that Mary can "take a nothing day and suddenly make it all seem worthwhile." What do you think makes a day "a nothing day?"
A day for me would be a day in which I get absolutely nothing accomplished. I like to be constantly busy and really don't know how to relax. [With ME/CFS (if that is in fact my diagnosis, and it's looking more and more like it should be), this makes life challenging.]
4) Mary works in the newsroom at WJM. Her desk is neat as a pin. Are you neat? Or do you lean to the sloppy side?
In 7th grade, my English teacher, Mrs. Trainham, talked to us about there being some people who are boxes, and some people who are squiggles - without defining either. She then asked us to sit for a minute and think about the question, "Are you a box or a squiggle?" before going around the class to say which we thought we were and why. I decided then that I'm neither, but I've yet to determine whether I'm a boxy squiggle or a squiggly box. Does that answer the question?
5) Mary's best friend, Rhoda, worked as a window dresser at Hempel's department store. What department store did you most recently shop at? What did you buy?
The other day, a box from Kohl's showed up. I did not remember ordering from Kohl's. We opened it. There were clothes for Sophia, Chloë, and me (not a lot, just one or two things each). I did not remember ordering these clothes. Chloë thought she remembered one item, so I let her try it on, and it fit. So did a dress. Sophia fit the two pairs of joggers, and I figured the cardigan must be for me since I've been wanting one lately. It's becoming quite disconcerting lately how often I can't remember things like this that you'd think I would!
6) Mary Richards lived in Minneapolis. What city is nearest to where you are right now?
Boise, where I live, is the largest city in Idaho. (It pales in comparison to the other cities in or near which I've lived: New York City and Syracuse in New York; Aiken in South Carolina; all over Miami, St. Petersburg, Tampa, and Panama City Beach in Florida; Virginia Beach in Virginia... the one place that's smaller is Yigo, on Guam!) I think of it more as a large town than a small city.
7) Originally the part of Mary Richards was written as a divorcée, but in 1970, there were no TV shows that centered around a divorced woman. Think about the women in your life. Are most of them married, divorced, single or widowed?
I would have to say that most of them are married.
8) The MTM production company logo featured a mewing kitten. The cat was found in a Minneapolis shelter, and, after her sequence was shot, she was adopted by a crew member who named her Mimsie. What's the name of the last cat -- or dog or hamster or rabbit -- that you petted?
This beautiful, big Maine Coon, Pepper, who belongs to Chloë.
9) Random question -- Would you rather have a job that kept you seated on your fanny or standing on your feet?
Well, if you had asked me that 20 - or even five! - years ago, I'd have said my feet. The good days now are ones that I'm even upright.
Now I have to go figure out why I'm starving, watching Food Network, and it's still two days until payday - and thus grocery day! Not smart! I'm watching back-to-back-to-back-to-back Cake Wars on my DVR, and my chief complaints are that: 1. From owning my own cake business back in Virginia Beach, I've long since figured out that many elements of this show have got to be staged; and 2. I'm irritated by the number of people from all over who say "ah-mond" instead of pronouncing the L in almond. Whyyyy?
This has been another whirlwind week for medical appointments, including a sojourn for my husband and me, our three teenagers, and our two doggos down to Salt Lake City, Utah, on Monday and back to Boise on Tuesday, with appointments and both days. I don't yet have a solidified diagnosis for what we've termed "Succubus," which has plagued me/us for the past 38 months, but it looks like it will be ME/CFS: Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. The doc there said this would explain why I've been so much sicker and worn out than the Fibromyalgia diagnosis would suggest, although I probably do have some of that, too. Fun, fun. I don't feel any better physically, but it's a huge weight off my shoulders just to have been listened to for once!
The movie Unrest describes precisely what I've been going through; you should watch it if you think you or someone you know might have ME/CFS. It's available all over the interwebs.
♥ Anyway, I'm telling you that because I know some of you have cared from distances far and farther, and I appreciate you so much. ♥
So let's get started! Link up here if you want to play along today!
1) Gidget was a sitcom that ran only one season. Have you ever seen it?
I actually have seen it, though in repeats, but I did not realize it was only one season!
2) Gidget is a high school student who is more interested in surfing and boys than in the books. When you were Gidget's age, was your top priority getting good grades? Or were you more involved in the social side of student life?
Well, obviously I'm much younger here, haha. My mom's writing (how I cherish that!) on the back says I'm six years old in 1982; 1st grade. Anyway, in high school, I was definitely far more interested in my studies, although I had a really good social life, too. I was a smart nerd with lots of friends - and boyfriends. ;)
3) Gidget's father was nearly always unflappable when it came to his daughter's high-spirited shenanigans. Who is the coolest, calmest person you know?
That would be my 13-year-old daughter, Sophie. She definitely doesn't get that from me! She may look more like me, but she's her daddy inside; our daughter Chloë is exactly the opposite. Jack is ... somewhere in the middle.
4) Gidget spends as much time as she can at the beach, hanging out with her best friend Larue. Fair-skinned Larue doesn't share Gidget's passion for surfing and prefers to stay on the beach blanket, wearing a floppy hat that protects her from the sun. Are you a sun worshipper? Or, like Larue, are you careful about your exposure to the sun?
Oh, no way I'm a sun worshipper. I may be a water-baby - I've always grown up in and around the surf - but I have had one horrid sunburn after another in this life. I'll probably have skin cancer some day. Sophie is the only person in our family who tans instead of burns. So weird! 5) Gidget, the quintessential California girl, was created by Freidrich Kohner, an Austrian-born screenwriter. Can you think of another Austrian import?
Isn't Arnold Schwarzenegger from Austria? 6) Howard Greenfield and Jack Keller wrote this week's Gidget theme. They also wrote the 1960 hit song, "Everybody's Somebody's Fool." When is the last time you felt foolish?
Oh, I absolutely do something I feel foolish about every single day. Every. Day. 7) This is the show that introduced Sally Field. She went on to win two Oscars and four Emmy Awards. When you think of Sally, what role comes to mind?
Oh, gosh. There are so many good ones, aren't there? Forest Gump, Steel Magnolias... but it's actually her role as family matriarch Nora Walker in the TV series Brothers & Sisters, which ran from 2006-2011, that I think of first. I don't know why.
8) Today Gidget is a grandmother. Sally reports that her grandchildren especially enjoy "sleepovers at Granny's." Where were you the last time you spent the night away from home?
We stayed at an airbnb home for the first time this past week when we were in Salt Lake. It may have been the last time. Oh, my gosh, it was an EPIC fail. Have y'all ever done it?
9) Random question -- Describe your perfect lazy afternoon.
Relaxing in a hammock near the seashore with a book, a tropical cocktail of some kind, and my family all nearby GETTING ALONG. Now that they're all teenagers, that "getting along" part has become more difficult to manage! Hormones, y'all.
I suppose I should attempt Sunday Stealing now. Y'know, since I missed it because of packing and planning for our trip. Missed y'all!