Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Weight Loss and Police Sketches

And continuing in the police theme:
Here’s something that’s really fun. I “drew” some faces so funny that I was laughing maniacally, even though all alone. Have at it, if you need a laugh:
Draw your very own police sketch

Weight up
New York, NY (AHN) A new study by researchers at Western Reserve
University suggests that women who suffer from lack of sleep are at
an increased risk of gaining weight.

In a study presented at American Thoracic Society's International
Conference in San Diego, researchers studied 68,183 middle-aged

The findings of the 16 year study revealed that women who slept 5
hours or less each night were 32 percent more likely to gain a
significant amount of weight (adding 33 pounds or more) and 15
percent more likely to become obese during 16 years of follow-up
than women who slept 7 hours each night.

Dr. Sanjay Patel of Case Western Reserve University told Reuters
Health, that this level of weight gain, 15 kg, or 33 pounds,
is "very clinically significant in terms of risk of diabetes and
heart disease."

Patel held the facts that women who sleep less eat more, and fidget
less, as the probable reasons for obesity.

From my E-mail
Location location location
Places in Which You Probably Wouldn’t Want to Live
- Paradox, New York
- Crapo, Maryland
- Boogertown, North Carolina
- Spasticville, Kansas
- Hellhole, Idaho
- Purgatory, Maine
- Girdletree, Maryland
- Rabbithash, Kentucky

No Kidding
- Rudeville, New Jersey
- Boring, Oregon
- Hell, Michigan
- Hooker, California
- Virgin, Utah
- Dulls Corner, Maryland
- Bowlegs, Oklahoma
- Volcano, Hawaii
- Beersville, Pennsylvania
- Fleatown, Ohio
- Burnt Corn, Alabama
- Two Guns, Arizona
- Toad Suck, Arkansas

Provocative Places
- Climax, Michigan
- Spread Eagle, Wisconsin
- Needmore, Arkansas
- Hardup, Utah
- Intercourse, Pennsylvania
- Hornytown, North Carolina
- Conception Junction, Missouri

Guess I'm going to have to start sleeping and fidgeting more. Wonder if I can fidget WHILE I'm sleeping? That should be a good weight-loss tactic. Have a Wonderful Wednesday!

Monday, May 29, 2006

The Urban Assault Vehicle

Here are some images from the Shooting Spree, finally. SLA used the last three pictures in the camera for her grandson and family at the picnic. So I walked to Walgreen's twice on Monday to get them developed. They were taken with a disposable camera and so aren't of good quality, like the wonderful photos from some other bloggers. But you can sort of get the idea.

Isn't this just the coolest vehicle ever? It's a big, bad version of the jeep! I totally fell in love with it.

After riding out to the police shooting range on a dusty, bumpy road. It was crowded back there and not everyone enjoyed the ride. But I loved loved loved it, as I wrote in the post after (so long ago, now) the Shooting Spree. Riding out and back in that vehicle was probably the most fun activity of the day, but it would be difficult to pick.

Yep, that's me poking out of the gun turret. Many of us had photos taken like this. We were joking that we're going to use them for Christmas cards, "Peace on Earth" or something like that. Probably not.

Here are two policemen on the Urban Assault Vehicle. I had taken a nifty photo of one standing on top of it in the black sniper outfit. But that photo must not have turned out.

We rode out to the shooting range early on Saturday morning. But when we returned it was on a busy road in the afternoon! Very fun to see the other driver's reactions and their double-take! A few speeded up to get a better look. It was so fun. Ahhhh, the memories! Happy Tuesday!

A Monday off

Today is a day off from work because it's Memorial Day. My Mom and I normally go out to the cemetary where Dad is buried to put fresh flowers and a wreath. We have a planter there, too, which I buy tough plants (to survive over the summer) of types that Dad liked and arrange and plant them. They have a ceremony at the cemetary and a flag is place along my Dad's grave along with many others (he was a veteran). This year my brothers did this task.

So the report on yesterday: I went to SLA's shortly after noon and followed her and Houseguest's car to a spot where we sat and waited until joined by her son and his family. Then we snaked through back roads to reach a gorgeous house up in the hills overlooking the lake. The owner is a childhood friend of SLA's daughter and of their family. She's in her twenties, a single parent of three kids and is doing really well for herself in hospital work. She also looks like a model besides all of that, and is a very nice person with great hospitality.

I had fun at her house with SLA's family and friends. SLA's little grandbaby was there and what a cutie! He wore us all out though! He's almost a year old. They had dressed him and styled his hair just like her son his daddy. He was so adorable! I had the rest of the film from my shooting spree with the CPA and used it on father-son photos. We also ate well, SLA's daughter's friend SDF had a vegetable plate with fresh stuff and sub sandwiches she and the girls had made. There also were bowls of pasta, chips and regular BBQ fare. So, as the afternoon wore on, we older folks were getting sleepy while the younger ones were playing outside or smoking according to their respective ages.

Houseguest and I left SLA to continue her visit. Later in the evening we all met up again at SLA's house to go out. Again we did the following cars thing out into the country to their favorite bar. The first time we followed cars I had wanted to tie a rope with cans behind SLA's car and honk as we followed. But we followers decided that it probably would get a police ticket of some sort. I haven't seen people do that for years so it must be illegal now, too bad.

The country bar scene was pretty fun, it's where SLA and Houseguest usually go. I've gone with them twice before. They like to sing Karaoke and both are pretty good singers. Many of the singers out last night were not, however, and soon SLA's daughter was asking me if I had any Excredrin!

Well, although I seldom take it, I DID have some. SLA's daughter and I really hit it off well. I barely knew her when the kids were younger, saw her maybe a handful of times, a sullen and reclusive teenager. SLA's son and mine hung out together when young, so he was over at our house quite a lot. Turns out the SLA's daughter has almost the same birthday as (and is the same age as) favorite co-worker at my job. So that sort of explains it.

Despite the difference in age, we have the same sort of humor and way of looking at the world. She was, however, rather mean to her mother SLA, and part of the chumming up to me may have been just to hurt her mother, who was so glad to see her after two years. That made me feel bad for SLA but she seemed to have fun anyway, singing and dancing and generally goofing off at the bar.

The two younger women, SLA's daughter and her friend SDF got bored after a few hours and wanted to go back into town to hit a younger-crowd nightclub. Daughter had a headache and SDF had just gone to the emergency room the day before for a horrible tooth infection! So I drove them back into town with the jeep and we cruised up and down the mini-downtown area looking for likely bars. Neither of them are local so had no idea which were good possibilities, and I was no help with that either. There were many cops out as the hour was late. I kept watching to see if I knew any of them--and also trying to drive well enough to not get stopped! We finally found an acceptable one, I dropped them off and went home.

Getting up this morning was difficult, as I'm not that used to drinking or staying up most of the night anymore. It took two cups of coffee, a shower and a long walk outside to clear my head! Now I'm listening to the police radio as a parade is about to start. One of those little scooters, a Seque(sp?) just went by on the sidewalk honking its teeny little horn to attract attention. Another squad car just drove by too. Things are hopping here in the neighborhood! Hope your Monday Memorial Day is going well for you!

Sunday, May 28, 2006

The Weekend Report

The King showed up yesterday to see Mom's new apartment. He brought a couple of things from her house that she wanted, some more of her pans and her large dollhouse. I was commanded to show up at 8:00 p.m. or before to see him.

My Mom suddenly appeared here yesterday on a special mission to tell me of him impending arrival. That visit is becoming a habit, it's the second time she showed up here on Saturday morning. She doesn't like the stairs but apparently once a week works much better for her. I was still blogging and hadn't done much cleaning yet. But after she left I got on it and did things like clean the ferrets cage, vacuum, and all the regular cleaning chores--while listening to the police radio! (well, not while vacuuming, but while doing the rest.)

The landlady came over and we got to talking about the trouble she's had at one of her other apartments. A young woman was MURDERED there this spring. The police are holding the landlords accountable for more than three police calls per year per apartment building. I told her about the Citizen's Police Academy and showed her my book with the sessions and my notes. She wants to do it next year! Nearly everyone does, I should get paid for recruiting.

Then she asked me if I wanted to see the now-vacant upstairs apartment. I had been thinking about moving there because it's a two-bedroom, but when I found out it was barely less expensive than our three-bedroom, I had decided not to move--plus there's MORE stairs! So she knew I didn't still want to consider moving up there but I went up to see it. It was mildly shocking, what a dump compared to ours! It's got teeny little windows, a mini-refrigerator and stove smaller than I had up at my little house! The roof slants down so the ceiling is low (should have shared some of the way high ceiling of our apartment way back when they were building this place!) The bathroom is so low that one could not stand upright to shower unless they were under 5' tall. It was like a cave. And the living room is right above my bedroom, which explains the noise. Glad I had already said I was not interested in that place! I wonder who will rent it for that much money?

After the chores and the tour were done I tried out our new coffeemaker! It produces espresso and steamed milk, so a made a latte each for son and me (landlady had gone). It doesn't quite work as well as the one at work or the one I gave away back in February BEFORE I took the "Espresso Yourself" class. But with lots of practice (lol) I'll get the hang of it.

Then I took my little dog for a 14-block walk. She loves to go walking and that was enough to make her tired but not exhausted. Well, that's enough of a report about what I did yesterday! Hope your weekend is going well. Today SLA has invited me to her family's BBQ and later at night we're going out.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

The Five Meme

Deni of Time to Tell has tagged me for this meme:


5 things in my refrigerator:

1. Lettuce, many different kinds for salad.

2. Yogurt, our dessert around here.

3. Oranges, I like them cold (and that works better for juicing).

4. Strawberries, no they're not in season yet here but were on sale.

5. Several bottles of Point Beer.

5 things in my closet:

1. Fans, two, and I'd better get them out for our predicted 90 degree weather this weekend!

2. Clothes, lots of course.

3. Hula Hoop, bought it for exercise and need to take it out and USE it.

4. Printer, for the computer that hasn't been hooked up yet.

5. Purses, two spare purses. Had many more but got rid of them in the move.

5 things in my purse:

1. Hair clip, so I can clip my hair up when walking outside.

2. Smaller purse, I keep inside the big one so I can just take the little one in shopping, etc.

3. Notebook Journal, I carry it with me daily.

4. Pens, have several.

5. Book, the current book I'm reading.

I won't tag anyone, use if you feel like it! Some people like writing memes and others don't. I normally love them, except the ones that have to do with childhood, the past, your first (whatever) THOSE I wouldn't like to do. But memes about current things are great!

Have a super-great weekend!

Friday, May 26, 2006

All I got

From my E-mail
Non-deep Thoughts

- Experience is the thing you have left when everything else is gone.

- What if there were no hypothetical questions?

- One nice thing about egotists: They don't talk about other people.

- When the only tool you own is a hammer, every problem begins to look like a nail.

- A flashlight is a case for holding dead batteries.

- What was the greatest thing before sliced bread?

- My weight is perfect for my height -- which varies.

- I used to be indecisive. Now I'm not sure.

- The cost of living hasn't affected its popularity.

- How can there be self-help "groups"?

Yeah, I know those jokes aren't that great but it's all I got for today! At least it's FRIDAY and soon, the start of a three-day weekend!!!

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Movie and a Meme

Mom, son and I went to see the Da Vinci Code last night. The movie is almost as intricate and confusing as the book! As I've said in comments, I liked reading "Angels and Demons" much better, and "Digital Fortress" was the best of the three Dan Brown books I've read. And Mom seems very happy in her new apartment, I'm glad.

The Letter Meme
I begged Magpie to loan me this meme. So now I have to tell you about my favorites according to the letters that she chose for me. She made it much easier, which was very kind of her, as it’s hard enough to think of clever or even not-very-clever things in the morning before work.

The letters Magpie gave me are P, B, and S

Pillow – I wish I had my head still on it right now!

Bed Are you noticing a theme here?

Sleep More would be so sweet…

Peanut Butter Sandwich – Of course! This is a perfect durable and tasty meal that doesn’t need refrigeration. I ate it all the time for lunch when I was working as a temp. I’ve since graduated to bringing steamed rice and veggies for lunch.

Blogging/Blogs/Bloggers Usually one of the best parts of my day! I love reading my favorite blogs and catching up on what’s going on in the lives of my blogger friends.

Senses Magpie mentioned this under “Music” but I really enjoy my senses, especially Sound, taste and touch, smell sometimes too except when the people in the apartment below us burn something while cooking! And of course, there’s Sex!

Paycheck/Payday Another of my very favorite days to receive one of my favorite things, even if most of it goes for bills and boring stuff.

Black Bird (red-winged) one of my favorite Birds, I especially love the beautiful liquid notes they sing.

Saturday and Sunday Days off, definitely two of my favorite days!

Pens and Pencils I carry them everywhere with me, along with my journal to jot down notes and thoughts. Actually the journal has become more of just a tracking device while I write my thoughts in the blog.

Black or Blue my favorite colors.

Spiders I like spiders; they keep harmful bugs off houseplants and are so interesting.

Police/Police Radio Bet you guessed this would be included on the list! Especially in boots and leather. I love listening to what they’re out there doing, too.

Breakfast My favorite meal when eating out. I usually have a

Salad instead, though, and I love them, too especially the fancy ones with nuts, goat cheese and/or craisens on them.

People Are so interesting to study, not necessarily to interact with them, Psychology.

Boys Well, MEN, really, but that doesn’t start with a P, B or an S now does it?

Sports Some of them I really enjoy watching, like football. I used to DO more of them when I was younger.

Plants I love both houseplants and outside plants, like vegetables or flowers in a garden.

Books Love them, am always reading something.

Scent Perfume, incense, oils. I like subtle good smells. Guess that would go under Senses, too.

Pets I love my little dog, Ricky the Chinchilla and those crazy two ferrets.

Beer Goes especially well with football or while doing the laundry, or—much more fun—while out with friends.

Sea gulls Most people around here hate them, but I love how gracefully they swoop and soar. I like their mournful “Aaaa Aaaaaa Aaaaaaaa” cries on the wind, too. Our tourists love them, too.

Paper Newspaper, writing paper, colored paper, it’s all good.

Beads I love them; masses of the little tiny ones or the large wooden type.

Spring and Summer Love the grass turning green and flowers coming up.

Peace As in peace and quiet and solitude, but also peace on earth.

Beyond as in, what’s up ahead, new experiences, places, people, things, growing and learning, moving ahead.

Skies I love blue skies, and watching clouds in the sky. My favorite seat in a plane is the window seat, of course!

So many loves that I could go on some more, but luckily it’s time to quit and get ready for work.

Any takers to do this meme? Let me know and I’ll pick a letter for you! Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Just Looking

At the company meeting yesterday, they passed around copies of the new office layout. There I am in the drawing, still in the middle of the floor, on display, will be plainly seen from down the hallway. They were also deciding on their picks for each office color. I got depressed all over again. I've tried to keep up a good attitude about the impending change but it's very difficult sometimes. After that they were talking about a company family party. I'm the only non-married one there, although I don't know if I'd subject a poor spouse to one of their company parties! I've never wanted to invite the V-Man, and if I did he probably wouldn't go. I keep trying to find the good in the company I work for, good wages, benefits, etc. but the truth is, I really really hate it there. I feel like a fish out of water, a dog with no bone, a tree towering over the little shrubs--well, you get the idea!

It was with a tired and depressed attitude I came home, took care of my little dog and sat down to read (my Mom's, she hasn't moved her subscription over to her new place yet) newspaper. And there in the classifieds was a great-sounding JOB! It's with a publishing company and blocks away from where I live. I'm not quite qualified for it, though. By that I mean it requires accounting skills and experience and I've only recently started doing accounting at work. But BZ did say recently that I could take an accounting class--should I hurry and sign up for one? That would be rather self-serving but she offered and I think I'll take her up on it. It may be too late for this particular job but I'm going to do up a cover letter and resume and hope for the best!

All of the fresh burst of hope brought another situation in mind:
In the spring of 2004 I was depressed about my job, too (same place, of course) and like a miracle saw an ad for a Police Secretary in the newspaper! I was interested in the police even back then, ha ha, but this was for the PD in the small rural city where I then lived. The catch was, I saw the ad on Friday and the application and paperwork were due the following MONDAY! Ordinarily that wouldn't have been such a problem, I rushed after work to pick up the application and asked a few questions while I was there. Friday night and Saturday morning I filled out the application, did a nice resume and cover letter.

But then I had to hurry to the Post Office by noon (because they closed then) to send the envelope. I was flying out EARLY on Monday morning for a distant event for work, before the PD office opened (I'd asked to make sure there wasn't some way I could drop the paperwork off, instead) and the job application was due by noon on Monday. I thought of asking my son to bring it to the PD but he was working nights and I'd be nervous that he might oversleep and miss the noon deadline, plus it seemed like rather a burden to place on him. So I sent the paperwork special delivery to arrive on Monday morning.

Early Monday morning I left a sheet of paper for my son, like I always do when traveling. At the top was my work cell number and the hotel address and phone. At the bottom of the sheet I put the PD's phone number. I was going to be gone for a week and wanted to make sure that he picked up any possible call from them about the job. We had caller ID in the country and ignored many "junk" calls, I didn't want him to accidently ignore a call for an interview!

The event went well and I was glad to be home. I asked my son if the Police Department had called for me. He looked rather surprised when I pointed at the number (with a written explanation) at the bottom of the "instruction" sheet. To my horror, he said he'd been calling that number in the evenings trying to get ahold of me! And after two or three nights, he tried calling in the daytime several times AND ASKING FOR ME! Yikes!

Can you just imagine what that Police Department thought? They must have caller ID.

1. First they get a specially-delivered job application, last minute from me--who only lives a few miles away from them.

2. Then they get a bunch of night-time phone calls from my household phone number!

3. After that, a male voice calls them many times during the day, asking for me--a job applicant!

What must they have thought! I know now just how suspicious and paranoid the police have to be about things. They must have thought I was a total looney-tunes, and probably checked me out thoroughly to make sure I wasn't a threat to other people.

Needless to say, I never got an interview call from them. I was probably lucky they didn't call on me in person! And I never, after hearing that horror story from my son, quite dared to call them to explain!

Now I think that job-finding story is hilarious, but it wasn't at the time. I'd really wanted that job. Do you have any funny or tragic job-finding stories?

Monday, May 22, 2006

A good weekend of buying and walking

It’s back to simple (beginning--not the difficult poses) yoga for me! No more of the yoga-pilates stuff. And I thought using the stretchy belt thing for the exercises was so cool and fun, but that’s what hurt my back. I won’t be doing that stuff again, too dangerous.

What I did do this weekend was walk and walk. Haven’t done that for a long time. Oh, I take my little dog for an 8-12 block walk every night but I haven’t really walked, like I used to do. I used to average walking eight miles per day! It’s excellent therapy and good exercise too, I like the fresh air. The city where I work has the Lakewalk, a boardwalk along the big lake. It’s very nice, scenic, but also very popular, especially on weekends. Quiet and peaceful, it’s not.

So I went to our (in our new city) little walkway along the Bay. It’s called the Osaugie Trail, and as I walked I swear that the red-winged blackbirds were singing, “O-Sa-geeee, chi chi chip, O-Sa-geeee” as I walked. I also saw geese, ducks, little birds and sea gulls. The waves were soothing, the rhythm and sparkle of the sun moving on them, and the sound of “woosh, woosh, woosh.” I walked and walked until it all felt surreal and it was like I wasn’t even separate from the grass, sky and water around me.

I walked until I felt weak and dizzy (hadn’t eaten lunch yet and it was, by then nearly 3:00) sat down and had a swing of water from my water bottle and turned around to walk back again. As I was coming back on the trail, I had an almost overwhelming urge to crawl on my knees on the warm ground, to dig my hands into the soil.

It’s planting season, you see, and if I were still living at my little house in the country I’d be digging the vegetable garden, especially on such a beautiful day as Sunday was. I knew eventually this day would come. Yesterday was the first time since moving into town that I’ve missed the country. And I missed it badly. I wondered if my flowers were all up, and if the trees I planted had survived the winter.

After returning to the car a bit sunburnt, I went shopping for a wall clock and then grocery shopping. I lugged all the goods upstairs and hung the wall clock over the couch in the living room. It’s an electric neon clock and my son hated it. “It looks like in a diner!” he said, when he saw it, “Neon?”

But I love it, as I love funky décor and just can’t stand those boring wall clocks with a black rim around them. In fact I can’t stand boring décor, period. But I did get rid of many things that I’ve had for 15 years during the move, like the large ceramic armadillo that I won. It’s belly was hollow like a bowl and I usually filled it with waxed fruit.

My friend SLA hates waxed fruit, and fake fruit in general. She would pretend to be offended at the wooden, plastic and waxed fruit placed around my living room. The fruit was getting rather shabby though, so when I moved I got rid of all the fruit, also my cute stuffed lizards and other cool but weird items like cheerleader pompoms and leis. So now I’ll just have to get some more things!

My long-term and still favorite piece is the rattan couch. I have been thinking of recovering it though. The pillows and the long (like a pillow) bottom are a burnt orange with tropic designs. It looks very 50's. I've been thinking of making it a soft green with a more subtle fern design. It's so comfortable that it served as my bed for nine years! It's only recently that I've been using a real bed, and have an actual bedroom to put it in. With a door.

What’s your favorite item of décor in your home?

Sunday, May 21, 2006

The Saint?

Yesterday I was happily reading and commenting on blogs when I heard a familiar sound. It was the methodical thump thump thump of my Mom's cane and it was coming up the stairs! She hates those stairs, so I just knew it had to be something rather dramatic to draw her back up here. She hasn't been up here since she moved, a week and a half ago.

It was. My younger brother, AKA "The King" or "Mighty Tom" had written her a letter. Unlike his usual letters, full of news about his boys, this one seemed rather sharp. I know because she let me read the first part of it. He was aggrieved because she had been to her former house (which he had purchased in February) and picked up a couple more items that she wanted for her new apartment. He had said many times, both verbally (I heard him) and in letters that she could take whatever she wanted from the house, go out there whenever she wanted, and even move back in, if she chose. MT and his family have since brought in new, posh furniture and things like a TV.

Mom was upset about this latest development and wanted to go out there immediately and pick up everything else she might need and then return the key to him. Plus we'd also need to get all of my books which have been stored in her basement for five years. I have, probably a dozen heavy boxes of books out there and did not really want to drive out on the spur of the moment and lug them all out of her basement and up the apartment stairs all by myself! And she has heavy and large items to get from there, too, my jeep wouldn't hold them all even if I was up to carrying all of the stuff alone. I figured we'd need yet another moving day, a truck and a crew to get her heavy cedar chest and other things from the house.

I offered her coffee and listened, as she said over and over again that MT "was not as wonderful" as she had thought, and other very provoking things. I itched to join in with my real opinion of MT, but refrained. Why add fuel to her fire?

For this restraint, my son (who had heard the whole thing and got up after she had left) called me "a saint". Because of all the comparisons to the perfect and dazzling MT and his family that Mom puts us through, this was a prime (and the only, so far) opportunity to get back at him.

Son has called me a saint before and says I don't have a mean bone in my body. Of course he's biased! But I hate meanness in anybody, most of all in myself and try very hard to be peaceful and kind. I guess it's my one virtue in an ocean of faults but I'm clinging on to it!

What's your top virtue, the one other people praise you for having?

Saturday, May 20, 2006

The Cure

I had a few paragraphs in the back of my mind to write, as I sat down. But then I found this in my E-mail:

Did You Know??
Gatorade can relieve headache pain almost immediately -- without the unpleasant side effects caused by traditional "pain relievers."

Did you know that Colgate toothpaste makes an excellent salve for burns.

Before you head to the drugstore for a high-priced inhaler filled with mysterious chemicals, try chewing on a couple of curiously strong Altoids peppermints. They'll clear up your stuffed nose.

Achy muscles from a bout of the flu? Mix 1 Tablespoon of horseradish in 1 cup of olive oil. Let the mixture sit for 30 minutes, then apply it as a massage oil, for instant relief for aching muscles.

Sore throat? Just mix 1/4 cup of vinegar with 1/4 cup of honey and take 1 tablespoon six times a day. The vinegar kills the bacteria.

Cure urinary tract infections with Alka-Seltzer Just dissolve two tablets in a glass of water and drink it at the onset of the symptoms. Alka-Seltzer begins eliminating urinary tract infections almost instantly -- even though the product was never been advertised for this use. (Note: Alka-Seltzer Plus Cold Medicine is not the same..and contains aspirin, which can cause stomach bleeding if you have ulcers.)

Honey remedy for skin blemishes... Cover the blemish with a dab of honey and place a Band-Aid over it. Honey kills the bacteria, keeps the skin sterile, and speeds healing. Works overnight.

Listerine therapy for toenail fungus... Get rid of unsightly toenail fungus by soaking your toes in Listerine mouthwash. The powerful antiseptic leaves your toenails looking healthy again.

Easy eyeglass protection... To prevent the screws in eyeglasses from loosening, apply a small drop of Maybelline Crystal Clear nail polish to the threads of the screws before tightening them.

Coca-Cola cure for rust... Forget those expensive rust removers. Just saturate an abrasive sponge with Coca Cola and scrub the rust stain. The phosphoric acid in the coke is what gets the job done.

Cleaning liquid that doubles as bug killer... If menacing bees, wasps, hornets, or yellow jackets get in your home and you can't find the insecticide, try a spray of Formula 409. Insects drop to the ground instantly.

Smart splinter remover...just pour a drop of Elmer's Glue-All over the splinter, let dry, and peel the dried glue off the skin. The splinter sticks to the dried glue.

Hunt's tomato paste boil cure....cover the boil with Hunt's tomato paste as a compress. The acids from the tomatoes soothe the pain and bring the boil to a head.

Balm for broken blisters...To disinfect a broken blister, dab on a few drops of Listerine . a powerful antiseptic.

Heinz vinegar to heal bruises... Soak a cotton ball in white vinegar and apply it to the bruise for 1 hour. The vinegar reduces the blueness and speeds up the healing process.

Kills fleas instantly. Dawn dish washing liquid does the trick. Add a few drops to your dog's bath and shampoo the animal thoroughly. Rinse well to avoid skin irritations. Goodbye fleas.

Rainy day cure for dog odor... Next time your dog comes in from the rain, simply wipe down the animal with Bounce or any dryer sheet, instantly making your dog smell springtime fresh.

Eliminate ear mites... All it takes is a few drops of Wesson corn oil in your cat's ear. Massage it in, then clean with a cotton ball. Repeat daily for 3 days. The oil soothes the cat's skin, smothers the mites, and accelerates healing.

Quaker Oats for fast pain relief....It's not for breakfast anymore! Mix 2 cups of Quaker Oats and 1 cup of water in a bowl and warm in the microwave for 1 minute, cool slightly, and apply the mixture to your hands for soothing relief from arthritis pain.

Some of these I've tried, such as the honey (but not with vinegar) for a sore throat, others I wonder about. Dogs lick their fur, so I don't think a dryer sheet would be that healthy to use on them. Have you tried any of the above? What's your favorite "cure"?

Friday, May 19, 2006

Crippled by exercise

I've been crippled by exercise! Those pilates-yoga sessions are killer, and I don't mean for muscles. My muscles aren't even sore. It's my right leg and my back. Feels like I've been thrown off the back of a speeding truck. It's not even that I overdid the exercise, after all I only did the first session not the more advanced. Thank God! It's just that it's the WRONG exercise for someone with a (formerly) injured back, although I don't know what's up with my leg, that's painful enough to limp, too. What a pain, literally, it's been to hobble the half mile UP the hill to where my car is parked, but I'll live.

There are some things I don't like about getting older--like the waning body abilities! Oh sure, there are stories about 70-year-old marathon runners, 80-year-old skiers and other admirable athletes who have aged to the point of being OLD, but are still athletic. But I, and most others my age, from looking around, aren't going to be like that by the time we hit 70 or 80! What a shame.

It's funny but most people seem to think that they always are going to be exactly how they are right now. Age proves THAT wrong. While you may feel the same inside, the outside certainly doesn't stay the same despite your best efforts!

Well, I really didn't mean to write a complaint about getting older, especially since I'd rather have that than the other choice. And I've always said that I LIKE change and get bored when things stay the same. I just wasn't thinking about this type of change. This morning I hobbled over to the computer, sat down and that's just what came out! But at least it's Friday! Happy Happy Friday to you!

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

police stuff, but no class

It was hot yesterday, to my northern blood. We went from two blanket weather to sleeping-with-only-a-sheet! It feels like summer. Of course that can just as quickly, change back again. It still rained some yesterday too, but the sun was out after weeks of overcast skies. So much for the weather report.

Tonight will be sort of a sad night, no CPA class. This is the first Wednesday I won't have one. Those nine weeks were so totally worth it that many of my friends want to do it next year. Wish they would have gone with me THIS year, but oh well. Some people are just very cautious while I'm one to jump into to things to see what they're like. Four hours of class per week sounds like a lot, too, but it went all too fast and was fun and interesting. I still haven't written about it all, especially the cool urban assault vehicle.

Our CPA graduation photo was finally in the newspaper yesterday too! The police department had submitted it last Wednesday but we were pre-empted for some real news. Plus, the police department and the city had an awards ceremony the following day that rightfully took more news attention. The city gave some officers awards for bravery, pulling a woman and her baby out of their burning house, heroic stuff like that.

I see some of the police officers from our class in the paper once in awhile, plus the captain was on the news on TV last night. I've seen "my" cop twice more when driving by on my way to work. It's really cool to, when I see a squad car, try to see if I know the officer, instead of just slowing down. Of course I still slow down, too!

I listen to the police radio and hear some sad things. There was an 18-year-old young man who tried to hang himself last night. He was still breathing when they arrived to help. This weekend I heard another suicide call and saw the obituary in the newspaper yesterday. The man was 46 years old and had a wife and kids, so sad. But then there are exciting things like pursuits and break-ins, kind of boring things like police calls for loud music or some kid took a bike from another kid.

We had a convenience store robbery a few blocks away and they haven't caught the two men who did it. I didn't hear that one on the police radio, though because it was during the day and I was at work. I can picture the action on the police radio a lot better than before I went on the ride-along or attended the CPA class. And sometimes I know the officers involved. Friend and I are applying for the Police Ox, but there are only two more spots left. They have a limit as to how many volunteers they can train.

Happy Middle of the Week Day to you!

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Numbers lie

Well, so much for yesterday's numbers. SLA and V-Man had # 4 - THE CONSERVATIVE, which is so not them, both are very NONCONFORMIST. And I had 9, which sort of fit but 7 fits much better. Numbers lie.

The landlords came through the apartment yesterday with a mortgage banker. I was worried that they were selling but I guess it's just "creative financing" to buy another apartment building. They are great people and more apartment owners ought to be like them. Actually my Mom's landlord couple are really nice too, they offered to take her to church since they go to the same one. They have been over to help set up her phones, fix the washer and other things. She may have made some new friends!

Of course they gave us a heads up that they were coming in around noon on Monday. Son would have been still sleeping (works nights). I had to pick up the 21 spent gunshells from the kitchen table! That might have looked a bit scary with all of the terrorist and security warnings going on. Especially since the rifle ones are good-sized shells.

V-Man's former girlfriend came over last night to fix our washer. She's the one who gave us the little washer and dryer. She is interested in one of the two positions my firm has open. I found out that she used to be a nurse. She and V-Man lived together for several years and seemed well suited, probably better than he and I. I don't know what happened between them as they are still friends--but of course HE considers ME that too--a fact I try to keep in mind. I've been thinking that the long-term outlook wouldn't be good for us because we're very very different in some ways but far too much alike in other ways. We've never had a calm, stable relationship but one always in flux.

Anyway, former girlfriend is a really nice person and would be great at one of our positions, but I'm not sure how I would feel if she worked in the same place as I do. They often don't treat me well there and the thought of her witnessing that kind of makes me cringe. On the other hand she's taller than me. I sometimes feel like a giant among the 5'1", and 5'3" little women at my workplace! Maybe that sounds really trivial but it kind of bothers me. Being asked to reach stuff for them makes me feel, well, sort of like a GUY! And I don't like that feeling at all! Probably I'm personalizing it too much, but as Trump said on The Apprentice last night, "It's all personal!"

Monday, May 15, 2006

I've got your number

Mother’s Day was pretty good, all in all. Hope yours was too. I received a yoga mat with blocks and a strap, acrylic paints, a beautiful potted tulip plant, and a magnifying glass. All great gifts!

To my Mom I brought that Al Franken book I talked about a long time ago that I got signed at the Earth Day event, a puzzle, and three long-stemmed roses. Then we went out to a movie. The movie was M:i:III and it was action packed and very good. Although it would be totally impossible, and the dialogue was stilted in spots, I enjoyed all the shoot ‘em up action, those big guns and things blowing up. My Mom kept complaining how loud it was. It must have been bothering her ears, which is weird because she’s hard of hearing and it didn’t bother me. But I think the hard of hearing depends on the pitch, and it was probably just the right (well, wrong, actually) pitch for her.

Other than that, she acted liked nothing has happened, so I guess that’s OK with me. I’d rather talk things out but this hasn’t been talk-out-able, so the ignore tactic is probably the best to just get alone with each other. Son was at work, of course. He gave me my Mother’s Day gifts before he went.

You’re Number Fun
From my E-mail
Your birth date describes who we are, what we are good at and what our inborn abilities are. It also points to what we have to learn and the challenges we are facing.

To figure out your Birth Number, add all the numbers in the birth date together, like in the example, until there is only one digit. A Birth Number does not prevent you from being anything you want to be; it will just color your choice differently and give you a little insight.

Example March 20, 1980
3 + 20 + 1980 = 2003
2 + 0 + 0 + 3 = 23
2 + 3 = 5

Keep going until you end up with a single digit number.
5 is the Birth Number to read for the birth date in the example.

1's are originals. Coming up with new ideas and executing them is natural. Having things their own way is another trait that gets them as being stubborn and arrogant. 1's are extremely honest and do well to learn some diplomacy skills. They like to take the initiative and are often leaders or bosses, as they like to be the best. Being self-employed is definitely helpful for them. Lesson to learn: Others' ideas might be just as good or better and to stay open minded.

Famous 1's: Tom Hanks, Robert Redford, Hulk Hogan, Carol Burnett, Wynona Judd, Nancy Reagan, Raquel Welch.

2's are the born diplomats. They are aware of others' needs and moods and often think of others before themselves. Naturally analytical and very intuitive they don't like to be alone. Friendship and companionship is very important and can lead them to be successful in life, but on the other hand they'd rather be alone than in an uncomfortable relationship. Being naturally shy they should learn to boost their self-esteem and express themselves freely and seize the moment and not put things off.

Famous 2's: President Bill Clinton, Madonna, Whoopee Goldberg, Thomas Edison, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.

3's are idealists. They are very creative, social, charming, romantic, and easy going. They start many things, but don't always see them through. They like others to be happy and go to great lengths to achieve it. They are very popular and idealistic. They should learn to see the world from a more realistic point of view.

Famous 3's: Alan Alder, Ann Landers, Bill Cosby, Melanie Griffith, Salvador Dali, Jodi Foster.

4's are sensible and traditional. They like order and routine. They only act when they fully understand what they are expected to do. They like getting their hands dirty and working hard. They are attracted to the outdoors and feel an affinity with nature. They are prepared to wait and can be stubborn and persistent. They should learn to be more flexible and to be nice to themselves.

Famous 4's: Neil Diamond, Margaret Thatcher, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Tina Turner, Paul Hogan, Oprah Winfrey.

5's are the explorers. Their natural curiosity, risk taking, and enthusiasm often land them in hot water. They need diversity, and don't like to be stuck in a rut. The whole world is their school and they see a learning possibility in every situation. The questions never stop. They are well advised to look before they take action and make sure they have all the facts before jumping to conclusions.

Famous 5's: Abraham Lincoln, Charlotte Bronte, Jessica Walter, Vincent Van Gogh, Bette Midler, Helen Keller.

6's are idealistic and need to feel useful to be happy. A strong family connection is important to them. Their actions influence their decisions. They have a strong urge to take care of others and to help. They are very loyal and make great teachers. They like art or music. They make loyal friends who take the friendship seriously. 6's should learn to differentiate between what they can change and what they cannot.

Famous 6's: Albert Einstein, Jane Seymour, John Denver, Meryl Streep, Christopher Columbus, Goldie Hawn.

7 's are the searchers. Always probing for hidden information, they find it difficult to accept things at face value. Emotions don't sway their decisions. Questioning everything in life, they don't like to be questioned themselves. They're never off to a fast start, and their motto is slow and steady wins the race. They come across as philosophers and being very knowledgeable, and sometimes as loners. They are technically inclined and make great researchers uncovering information. They like secrets. They live in their own world and should learn what is acceptable and what is not in the world at large.

Famous 7's: William Shakespeare, Lucille Ball, Michael Jackson, Joan Baez, Princess Diana.

8's are the problem solvers. They are professional, blunt and to the point, have good judgment and are decisive. They have grand plans and like to live the good life. They take charge of people. They view people objectively. They let you know in no uncertain terms that they are the boss!.

Famous 8's: Edgar Cayce, Barbara Streisand, George Harrison, Jane Fonda, Pablo Picasso, Aretha Franklin, Nostrodamus.

9's are natural entertainers. They are very caring and generous, giving away their last dollar to help. With their charm, they have no problem making friends and nobody is a stranger to them. They have so many different personalities that people around them have a hard time understanding them. They are like chameleons, ever changing and blending in. They have tremendous luck, but also can suffer from extremes in fortune and mood. To be successful, they need to build a loving foundation.

Famous 9's: Albert Schweitzer, Shirley MacLaine, Harrison Ford, Jimmy Carter, Elvis Presley.

So, what's your number? I'm the last one, a 9, hmmm something to think about. It's Monday and it's hard to keep my eyes open, the bed looks so inviting. But it's off to work. Have a good one!

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Happy Mother's Day!

How To Know You're Ready For Parenthood
from my E-mail

MESS TEST: Smear peanut butter on the sofa and curtains. Now rub your hands in the wet flower bed and rub on the walls. Cover the stains with crayons. Place a fish stick behind the couch and leave it there all summer.

TOY TEST: Obtain a 55-gallon box of Legos. (If Legos are not available, you may substitute small plastic dinosaurs, tea sets or army men.) Have a friend spread them all over the house. Put on a blindfold. Try to walk to the bathroom or kitchen. Do not scream (this could wake a child at night).

GROCERY STORE TEST: Borrow one or two small animals (a litter of large puppies or half-grown kittens work best) and take them with you as you shop at the grocery store. Always keep them in sight and pay for anything they eat or damage.

DRESSING TEST: Obtain one large, unhappy, live octopus. Stuff it into a small net bag making sure that all arms stay inside. Easier to obtain testing materials: try to dress the (above) litter of puppies or kittens and KEEP the clothing on them!

FEEDING TEST: Obtain a large plastic milk jug. Fill it halfway with water. Suspend from the ceiling with a stout cord. Get the jug swinging. Try to insert spoonfuls of soggy cereal (such as Fruit Loops or Cheerios) into the mouth of the jug while pretending to be an airplane. Now dump the contents of the jug on the floor. Repeat.

Walker wrote a beautiful tribute to Mother's and to women who never had children but have a strong maternal instinct. A link to his blog Lost Here and Beyond is on the right.

Yesterday I got to see my good friend SLA, hadn't seen her or Houseguest for ages. I didn't do my usual Saturday coffeehouse thing, but went shopping for a bathroom rug (how exciting is that?) We couldn't have one on the floor before because of the possibility of my Mom slipping or tripping on it.

It sounds like it's raining again, as I hear it on our tall, long windows. But at least we didn't get the SNOW that was predicted, yet anyway.

I'm tired, a bit sore from exercising and also wondering how my "Mom" visit will go later today. I haven't seen her since Thursday night and she hasn't called to give me her new phone number. It was her choice to move out, even though I'm happy about it, so I really don't know why she's mad at me. She is an all-or-nothing type of person, always has been. She either adores or dispises you and I'm afraid I've gone into the latter category. First it was our little dog, who she used to adore, then my son who fell out of her adoration, and now me.

But I don't think she's ever adored me, I've always been the blacksheep of the family. Our relationship has always been rocky since I left home to go to school in the town where she worked and started in a relationship with her (didn't really have one as a child, she wasn't ever home.)

I discussed it some with SLA, but not too much as she has issues of her own and her mother has been gone many years now. Guess I'm lucky that Mom's still around, many people aren't as fortunate. Happy Mother's Day to all mothers and maternal people!

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Work and canned goods

I stopped at my Mom's new place on Thursday night to drop off her mail and her delivered newspaper. She hasn't changed either service yet, guess I should just do it for her. She is hard of hearing and took forever to get to the door. I didn't take off my coat, gave her the mail and paper. She tried to gave me her old bags and boxes, which I didn't really want to drag back up my stairs. I did offer to "garbage" them for her, but they can be reused, she said. I doubt those boxes could or should be reused after three moves! I had to tape some of them together, especially to haul all of her canned goods.

And what is it about older people and those damned canned goods? I packed the good ones for her, throwing away the rusted and dented cans. She has enough to last for years, I swear. I HATE canned foods but see where they might come in handy for situations (like in the country) where the power is off or something like that. Even I had a few canned goods when we were living in the country.

My Mom is mad at me again. When I was leaving her place on Thursday night, she said dismissively, "See you Sunday." Which is Mother's Day, of course. I was relieved that she doesn't expect me to drag her paper and mail over there or check on her every day. She is probably as tired of me as I was of her. Happy Mother's Day to us both! I wonder how that will go. I've promised to take her to a movie, her choice on Sunday.

OK, on to the promised (from the title) juicy part of the post:
V-Man called me at work twice yesterday. We talked about all sorts of things, especially mothers, as he lived with his mother for awhile too, but escaped. We had some "moments" while moving, in my room, in the moving van, in the basement of my Mom's new place. My son walked in and caught us once, but couldn't see anything from the angle from the door. V-Man lives a far distance away and we have been both far too busy and frustrated. A phone call from his place to my apartment is long-distance, the gasoline prices are high, blah blah, always a reason.

So on the second call to the office, things got started. It was very poor judgment on my part, really. We have a phone system at work where I believe they can record us. Technically it's illegal to record or listen in to calls without consent but those "rights" laws don't apply at work. So it was foolish (but pretty fun, hehe) to have phone sex at work.

Least-favorite co-worker's office is right next to mine and SHE WAS IN! So what was I thinking? She could have, um, overheard my sound effects. She is a power-hungry, frustrated, tattletale to BZ so if she did, it won't stay secret with her. OK, this is going to be really hard to explain to a new employer if I get fired for having phone sex at work! I'm not really worried about it, but think maybe I'd better NOT do that ever again. Happy Saturday to you!

Friday, May 12, 2006

German commands for the talking dog

Ahhhh freedom! I went to the Whole Foods Co-op after work. They had moved into a new store last fall--that I'd never been inside. I had missed their grand opening party for members too, because of our convention last fall. The new store is more like a regular grocery store, which is both good and bad. I kind of liked the funky little old co-op, but this new place has everything! Along with the food I bought some Kiss My Face aromatherapy lotion. It was a pretty staggering grocery bill but everything was healthy and organic, and no pre-prepared foods (even the co-op has those.)

After the realization that I'd eaten fast food and pizza both in one day on Wednesday's moving day, I figured I'd better tighten up my eating habits once again. I do eat pretty healthy, hadn't had pizza since--well, I can't remember when. And the fast food is every time we move, which has been three times in three months (us once, Mom twice) plus a couple others in there. So I could be doing much better. I also stepped up the exercise, as watching what I eat alone does not convince my body to drop pounds! And I could lose a few pounds, especially with summer coming up.

Even cutting back on caffeine, had cut back to a cup a day until my Mom moved in with us, doesn't help. Of course I have to work on getting back to only a cup of coffee per day now, as I went back up to 1-3 cups per day. Taking that fun Espresso class didn't help that, bad move! Still, it's better than my adult lifetime habit of drinking several POTS of coffee each day, which I had up until April 2005. I got some more green tea at the co-op too. But too much talking about dieting and eating becomes boring, so on to (I hope!) more interesting things.

I had a brief little half-hour lunch with my ex co-worker and now friend. She called me last minute, so I grabbed my CPA book and diploma to show her. I also told her about the latest sessions and the shooting spree, as we started to call it. She was impressed. So impressed that she was going back to her office to call about joining the Police Ox! It would be nice to have a friend volunteering there too. I do a lot of stuff alone, which is fun but having a friend along is more fun.

There are several CPA things that I haven't written about in depth or at all. One was the K-9 demonstration that they held for us out at the shooting range. Our police have one dog who does it all, finds lost people, attacks on command and sniffs out five kinds of drugs. One of my classmates asked if the dog lets his handler know which drug of the five it is! That would be a NO, of course. The police test the discovered substance and have to keep careful records of the lab work--which we had in the evidence session of our CPA classes. The police dog cannot tell the handler which drug it is. Last night I did dream that my little dog was talking to me!

The police dog was imported from Germany and only understands German commands! The handler would yell something like, "Foomphhh!" and the dog would drop to the ground and stay there. When the dog had a vicious shaking grip on the protective gear of another cop, the handler yelled something like, "Oussst!" But since I don't know German that may not be completely accurate, it just sounded like that.

He was a beautiful dog, German Shepherds have such a beautiful, expressive face. And he was talkative too. While the handler was telling us interesting facts and figures, the dog was talking too! He'd do this up and down noise in his throat like huskies do. But when we were asking questions one kill-joy classmate asked how they got the dog to shut up! "Swear at him in German," the handler said, and demonstrated. The poor dog slunk down at being yelled at. But soon he was "talking" again. I thought it was endearing, I like when dogs do that.

The police dog was very eager to sniff out drugs. He loves to work and gets called out, often along with the dog the county has, from 180-200 times each year. As a demonstration for us, the cops had hidden drugs in the police chief's car! The dog went nuts as soon as he got even close to the car. Then he actively sniffed and pawed out the pre-hidden packets, vials and pouches of drugs.

They had another officer (properly protected with gear) get a head-start run when the handler gave a command to the dog. The dog caught up with the fleeing "suspect" in two bounds, grabbed him and threw him down. The handler had to call him off as the dog really enjoys his work, including the attacking part of it! Another plain-clothed officer came up to the handler and started talking to him, then yelling at him and then (tried to) attack him. The police dog leaped between them to protect his master. It was so cool to watch!

The police dog goes home every night with his handler. The handler has a wife and two children, ages two and four years old! The dog is gentle with children and totally trustworthy. The only bad thing, the handler said, is that the dog will not take commands from his wife, even when she learned a couple of German commands. But he is a well-behaved, gentle housedog when he's not working. I fell so in love with this gorgeous creature!

Well, it's Friday today and barely seems it to me, after having Wednesday off for moving. Have a great day and weekend!

Thursday, May 11, 2006

A day of endings

Yesterday is done, and so are two parts of my life. We moved my Mom to her new, ground-level apartment. Even though it was pouring rain for the last part (carrying her stuff from the truck to the new place) it was the best move ever, and I've had a LOT of moves!

The whole thing was supposed to start at 9:00, but my son had gone to bed at 5:00 a.m. Pseudo son also is a night owl, as is V-Man because he works nights. So I didn't really think the crew would be ready by 9:00, and they weren't. Pseudo son decided (when I finally called him) that "it wasn't really a good day for him..." and that he wouldn't be able to help. Son was still in bed, of course, and I'd been calling V-Man since 1:00 on Tuesday and he hadn't called me back yet. What Mom and I thought was a sure-thing and all set up was in danger of falling apart. And I had rented the truck and taken the day off from work. It also was my son's only day off from work for a long time (yes, I do feel bad about that part!)

I spent at least 15-minutes on the phone to re-convince Pseudo son to help us out with my Mom making gestures from her chair and saying stuff to me that I couldn't hear, because I was on the phone. What probably saved the day was the fact that V-Man was already enroute (so I thought, turns out that he really wasn't, yet) to pick up Pseudo son because they both live out in the country. V-Man had to make a few stops but he and PS came around noon. I was so relieved, especially not to have to continue to make lame conversation with my Mom while she waited.

She wasn't actually there when they came, as she had the delivery of her new bed to the new place at 11:30 and had to leave to wait there instead. That gave me time to peek into her largely unpacked bedroom and get to work. She had claimed she was all packed, of course. I knew that wasn't so because she had barely packed a thing from the rest of the apartment but didn't want to call her a liar. I also found out that she has ruined the mattress on one of my beds that she was using. So it worked out much better. In fact V-Man said as they first came in, "Aren't you missing something?" And son and I chimed in, "NO!"

So, while moves are never fun, this one had some funny and fun moments. V-Man was in a good humor, but we could not figure out how he had done his former "feat of strength" and carried Mom's recliner up the stairs on his head! He tried carrying it down and it didn't fit well through the doors or in the hallway this time. At the new place I had picked up a lot of fast food and we ate and set up Mom's place with kitchen stuff, plugged in lamps, TV and VCR and all of that sort of thing.

We brought back the truck and I had to get ready for my CPA graduation! The mayor, police chief and others were there. I had bought a thank you card to circulate among the class members to sign. Actually I brought two cards, one kind of mushy about heroes and all and the other plain. I took a quick poll from a couple of class members outside the door and the mushy one won (and I liked it better, too.) Thank you cards are hard to get just right. Some are too funny and silly, some too pompous and some just too plain. I gave the card to the police chief after we had all written something in it.

After all the speeches I was the first name called and hesitated, wondering if I was supposed to go up to the front. I was, of course, and walked through the line and shook everyone's hand. I got a pin and a nice diploma in a blue cloth cover like a book. We had a pizza party with a decorated cake after that. It was hard to say goodbye to everyone.

It was a long day, and kind of bittersweet. It will be sad to not attend CPA any more. And I really thought that the extended family living might have worked out. Don't know why, as I barely saw my Mom as a kid and didn't really get along with her that well as an adult. Wishful thinking, I guess, I haven't outgrown it yet!

V-Man did pick up on something she said, at the end as we were sitting around in her new living room, "I'll have to get back to domesticity. It will be fun, I'm looking forward to it." Huh? She did as little as possible when living with me, sigh.

Oh well. This morning is so peaceful, and late last night after coming home from graduation was too. I love it. Have a great day.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

My best gun story

Big battles at home over the starting time of tomorrow’s move. The last time we moved, which was not so long ago, we didn’t start until 3:00 p.m! Needless to say we ended up having to rent the truck for an extra day, and some of us were working from early in the morning until the wee hours just because certain other people couldn’t get up before noon or 1:00. Not the way I like to move. But of course, what sane person likes any part of moving except the end result? I’ll be so glad when this is over. This apartment is expensive without my Mom paying part of it, though. So I’ll be moving in the near future, too.

My gun reaction on Saturday surprised me—a lot. I’d grown up with guns. My Dad and brothers hunted (women didn’t hunt, in my family) and I’ve shot guns. When I was married and living in the country I owned a shotgun and a small rifle. I loved that rifle, it was a Ruger 22 with a clip. I slept with the clip under my pillow and the gun by my side because my ex worked rotating shifts and so was gone all night sometimes. My best gun story was with that rifle:

I was alone in the house in the middle of the woods with my baby son sleeping in the next room. I awakened to a violent pounding on the back door, which led into our kitchen. It was a drunken friend of one of my ex’s friends and he was yelling all sorts of scary and obsene things at me through the door, which had a window. I quickly got up, slipped on my bathrobe and put the clip into the rifle. I turned on the kitchen light so he could see me clearly (probably not so safe, really, as then I was a clear target if HE had a weapon!) went down on one knee and balanced the gun on that knee. He saw me all right and stopped hollering, especially when he heard the click of the gun cocking.

“If you break that door down, I will blow off your head.” I said loudly to him, and meant it. Even though I didn’t think a 22 could take off anyone’s head, it was close range and I definely would be able to hit him with several shots. My coldblooded plan was to shoot him as many times as it took to drop him and THEN fire into the ceiling and later claim I’d fired a warning shot. I didn’t want to go to prison for murder, the laws about shooting intruders are kind of weird in my old state.

Well, he decided not to break our door down and disappeared into the woods. No, I didn’t call the police after that, either. I didn’t dare because my ex hung out with such a motley bunch of people (just think of Earl, on TV) that there was no telling what he/they had in the basement, possibly drugs, stolen goods. I didn’t even go down there as our laundry was upstairs. I didn’t want the police looking through our house! And, of course it would have taken them a very long time to come to our house, which is the big difference between living in the country and living in town. Country people need to be quite self-sufficient because help isn't just a few minutes away.

When married, I’ve done a some small game hunting and always liked the feel of a gun in my hand. Just thought I’d love shooting some big, powerful guns. But the guns on Saturday were black, scary, had scopes and straps. Our targets were human-shaped. It was very unnerving. And, as I said yesterday, I couldn’t have predicted that my reaction would be to feel more nervous and scared than thrilled to shoot THOSE rifles! There was a progressive lead-up to my semi-freaking out over it too, which I’ll write about later this week. Have a good Tuesday!

Monday, May 08, 2006

Twenty-one spent shells

Twenty-one spent shells are lined up on my kitchen table. I didn't know there were 21, just found that out now because when I was in the kitchen getting coffee I counted them. I probably shot more than that on Saturday as I fired four different types of guns and two of them were automatic rifles. The two rifles were an M16 and a sniper rifle, and actually there was another type of automatic rifle in there, too, maybe a 308? Not sure as I'm one to write that stuff down to remember it and couldn't out on the firing range.

I had thought firing the guns, pardon the pun, would be a blast. It wasn't as fun as anticipated. I was shivering when holding the M16. OK, it was chilly outside then yet, but I was also nervous, trying to remember how to put the magazine-thing in, how to move it up, how to unlock the safety, how to change into automatic firing. It didn't help any that the officer assisting me was that really cute one (but so many of them are!) who's 6'5" and on bike patrol! I shot OK, certainly not the best, as one of my classmates is in the military and required to qualify each year, but not the worst either.

There were so many components to that day other than the shooting, I have to try to write about them before they become a distant memory! Have a good Monday, the best you can, anyway!

Friday, May 05, 2006

Got superpower?

Mom's move is planned for next Wednesday. I think it's May 10th. I need to ask for that day off as a vacation day, rent a moving truck, and get our happy little crew together once more.

Mom told me last night, "I don't think ____ (son/grandson) wants to move me!" in great surprise, and in criticism.

"Of course he doesn't, none of us do, especially this soon! Moving is a lot of hard work but we'll get 'er done!" I said with a smile, because the end result will be good, though. My Mom doesn't do any of the actual moving, packing or unpacking. So she looks at moving day in quite another way than we do as sweaty, struggling laborers.

Yesterday in my short 'n easy post about superpowers I forgot to ask the big question:

What is YOUR superpower? (On second thought, I bet everyone has at least one!)

Thursday, May 04, 2006

13 Things and my superpower!

Stolen shamelssly from Magpie...

Thirteen things on my desk around the computer:

1. Black cup of coffee that says, "You're Fired" in red lettering, nearly empty
2. Elmers Rubber Cement
3. Box of 72 Crayons
4. Bottle of Sally Hanson Miracle Nailgrowth Salon Strength
5. Dasani bottled water, nearly full
6. Citrus lipbalm
7. Vanilla lipbalm
8. Large green paperclip-almost as large as my hand
9. Go Active pedometer
10. Boston 3-hole paper punch
11. Lord Vishnu's Love Handles book to return to the library
12. White Lotus perfumed oil
13. Lots of pens (I count six, and some may be hiding under the keyboard)

The CPA was super again last night. When I have more time I'll write about it a little. Thanks to Magpie for the great and quick posting idea! It didn't take me long to just look around my computer and write down what's there, no thought required.

Speaking of thought, Stacy the Peanut Queen has blessed me with a wonderful one. I have a SUPERPOWER!!! In her posting today she talked about having a superpower and that invisibility would be a good one to have. Well, I have had it since childhood and have never regarded it as a superpower before! Now I'll be properly grateful; not everyone is blessed with a superpower! Have a good Thursday!

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Finally, at last

Well, it happened! After all the phone calling and other attempts to see the apartment, we saw it during the day yesterday. I had to take off work to do it. But once we saw it, things started moving quickly. We went to the rental office to fill out applications (I did too, so they can find me a smaller apartment)my Mom paid the first month's rent and a deposit. They gave her some keys and just like that, my Mom has a new apartment and is moving!!!! Just had to get a LOT of exclamations in there.

I had to go back into work for a few hours to make up the time. BZ asked me if I could give her a ride home tomorrow (today, now.) So I was in semi-panic mode when I got home late. She wears nice clothes and is VERY picky, while the jeep, well, it's an old jeep and scruffy around the edges. I did the best I could to tidy it up at least a little. A lot of my son's stuff was still there from when he had the car accident. Luckily for me he was home and helped me clear out his stuff. Now the jeep doesn't look great or like a nice new car or anything, but is presentable.

Tonight's CPA is abou the local justice system, including the juvenile justice system and how cases are brought to trial. This Saturday we will get to fire weapons at the police shooting range, next Wednesday is about community policing and our graduation. Then we're done. You could not believe how sad I am about that. I love going every week and talking about police stuff. Guess I'll have to apply for the Police Auxiliary to keep it going!

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Showering with Ferrets

Maybe I'll write a book someday, Showering with Ferrets. Do you think they'd make it into a movie? Anyway, it's quite the experience. I set up a ferret playground each day in the hope that it will keep them away from the couple of places they aren't supposed to go in the bathroom. Sometimes it works, often not. Today they got on top of the hamper and from there to the shelf. If you ever want to clear a shelf, a ferret would be a good bet, better than a cat, even. Nebby knocked over a cleaning bottle, and the top came off when it hit the floor. I was finishing up in the shower when I smelled the cleaner smell. It was sort of an emergency to get the ferrets out of it and wash off their little feet so it wouldn't make them sick. Duggie wanted to walk through it to get to the bathtub, and the floor was slick with the liquid. The bathroom smells really good now!

The landlords came to get the rent last night and frowned at the washer. We have it in the kitchen but they knocked on the back door. They also said we could just change the living room lightbulb ourselves. We certainly can change our own lightbulbs but this one is on a very high ceiling and we got rid of our ladder! I'd figured we wouldn't be using it in an apartment, plus where would we store it? Should have kept it. I don't know how we're going to reach the ceiling, stack up furniture and stand on top, I guess.

I just finished a good, funny book, Lord Vishnu's Love Handles, by Will Clarke. It's a crazy, sort of a spy thriller book. I'd highly recommend it, a quick read. I read in while sitting in my car, actually! Yes, that sounds pathetic but I desperately needed alone time on Sunday. And even though I was bundled up, it got pretty darn cold in the car. Actually I'm probably lucky that the police didn't come to check me out as a suspicious vehicle! Now that would have been embarrassing. A Happy Tuesday to you!