Monday, April 23, 2018

Weekend Wrap-Up

Ah, Monday, we meet again. Now, I know you get a bad rap, Monday, but, honestly? You may deserve it.

Anyhoodle, my weekend was busy and productive. I feel like I say that a lot lately, but, I also often say that I would rather be busy than bored, so...there's that.

Anyhoodle, again...Friday afternoon I got a wild hair and found myself purging and reorganizing my bathroom vanity. I hadn't done it in a while and it was past due. As is often the case, once I got started, the effort led to a plethora of unrelated chores that suddenly seemed equally important; one of which was a cleaning and reorganizing of the kids' bathroom cabinet. Apparently, it had been quite a while since I explored the inner most recesses of that space, as evidenced by the treasure I unearthed...


...of course, that led to a trip down memory lane, back to a time when the Man-Cub could not be convinced to enter the tub without a full contingent of Matchbox cars, action figures, and various other playthings at the ready.

This led be to the Cub's room, where I planned to store the toys in the closet, which, left me with an itch to clean out and organize that particular space, as well (I resisted! The Cub will be home in two weeks! He can clean it out his damn self!).

This is how my housekeeping usually goes. True story.

Saturday, I entered my office/scrapbooking room to grab something and it occurred to me that that particular room could also use another tidying up, so, I got started on that chore, organizing the items that I have been collecting for the Rodeo Princess's shower and moving the new items that I have recently purchased for use on the porch into the mudroom, where they will languish until such time as I get the energy to pressure wash and organize the porch for the season.

I didn't even have the room finished before I had moved on to actually scrapbooking (in the scrapbooking room, what?!).

See how I roll? I'm all over here like, squirrel!

But, I managed to knock out several pages for Queen B's scrapbooks; I'm now up to the spring of 2012! Go, me! When I texted the Queen  pictures of my progress, she was duly impressed.

She also reminded me that, back in 2012, she was a sophomore in high school and, now, she is a college senior, so, I shouldn't get too full of myself and my awesome progress.

Whatever, child.

Yesterday, I spent a little more time on the scrapbooking before getting bored tired, at which point I loaded the dog up in the car and set out for the park to play fetch. It was an absolutely gorgeous day, and, I really should have been power-washing the porch (as mentioned previously), but, Hugh was out of town at another wrestling tournament, and, I am accident-prone under the best of circumstances, so I didn't think I should risk our new power-washer with my ineptitude, so, I skipped the job.

Besides, the dog needed exercise. Although, given the fact that he only fetched the ball a handful of times before jogging right past me and waiting patiently at the back of my Tahoe, like, "come on, woman! Time to go lay in the shade!", I guess he would beg to differ.

Later in the day, I met with the Booster Club scholarship committee to screen the applicants for this year's awards as well as to put the finishing touches on plans for the up-coming Senior Sports Banquet.

By the time we were finished, Hugh had arrived home, and, I spent the remainder of the evening lazing about on the couch with this one hanging out over my shoulder..

...I don't know why he was so tired; it's not like he had cabinets to organize this weekend.

As a side note, in my next life, I want to be a cat.

Happy Monday, friends.

Friday, April 20, 2018

Friday Favorites

If you've read here at all over the past year, you've probably heard me say that, since the Man-Cub decided to attend college in Hawaii, I have been inundated with references to, and reminders of, Hawaii. Well, the universe continues to send me thinly veiled assurances that the Cub is exactly where he is meant to be; this week, it came in the form of a pineapple plant that my co-worker found at a local nursery.

Pineapples in Colorado. What?!

You bet your bippy I ran right out and bought one of my own

I have no idea if the fruit will ever grow large enough to eat, or, if the plant will grow another fruit after the first one is harvested. Actually, I have no idea if the plant itself will survive my horticultural ineptitude. Time will tell that story, but, in the meantime, having a little reminder of the island while he's home for summer break will be good for the Cub.

I did mention that he'll be home in eighteen days, right? No? Yep, eighteen days!

Speaking of the Cub, one of his favorite things to do with Rowdie, before he passed away, was to cuddle on the floor while watching television. I can't wait for him to meet Boomer; I have a feeling they will take to each other like Forrest took to Bubba (Forrest Gump reference!).

I know this happy dog sure has earned a place on my list of favorites.

I'm looking forward to the Cub coming home for a lot of reasons, obviously, but, one of the biggest ones is the fact that I'll have my geeky movie watching partner back; Avengers: Infinity War and Deadpool II are right around the corner!

One movie that I know I probably won't be able to persuade him to watch is The Greatest Showman, which, I am embarrassed to admit, I just experienced for the first time, myself  (I have mentioned that I am always tardy to the party, right?). This is a tragedy because the movie is awesome! In fact, I added the soundtrack to my running playlist and my sessions on the treadmill have been invigorated.

He sings! He dances! He kicks ass as Wolverine! Is there anything Hugh Jackman can't do?

The drink in the Starbucks cup in the picture above is a homemade iced coffee; I keep a pitcher of strongly brewed coffee in the fridge and, when I have a hankering for one, I just add almond milk, stevia, ice, and I'm good to go; it's saving me a small fortune over running to the Sbux drive-thru every time I'm jonesing.

On the topic of jonesing, since I gave up sugar, I've noticed that my tolerance for even natural sweeteners has diminished, which, I guess, isn't actually jonesing, it's the opposite of jonesing.


Anyhoodle, my newfound intolerance of sweetness has caused me to turn my nose up at a lot of the containers of yogurt that I used to enjoy. But, this french style yogurt by Yoplait is the bomb-diggity-not too sweet, just tart enough, making for a satisfying afternoon or early evening snack.

Plus, the little glass jar it comes in is ah-doooor-able! I'm saving them for the mini-trifle recipe that I am planning to serve at the Rodeo Princess's bridal shower in August. Additional plans for the shower include this design for the invitations... incorporates her colors as well as the overall theme that the wedding will follow, so, I think it was a very good choice.

And, speaking of good choices, Queen B was accepted into the internship that she wanted; she will be working side-by-side with the head wedding planner at one of the nicest venues in Neighboring City. They are getting the best candidate for the position, hands down, and, I'm not just saying that because she is my daughter.

My favorite daughter.

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Rude Awakening

A couple of days ago a lumber yard in Hooterville caught fire and, despite the local fire department's best efforts, burned to the ground. The fire spread to nearby sawdust piles and, while the firefighters were able to extinguish the flames, the piles are still smoldering.

Last night, I awoke from a pretty deep sleep, convinced that the house was on fire. Apparently, I smelled smoke and my fight-or-flight instinct kicked in, waking me up in a total panic, which, caused Hugh to wake equally panicked. Once he was able to convince me that the smell was just the residual smoke from the saw pits, I was able to calm down enough to fall back to sleep, but, poor Hugh , whose fight-or-flight instinct is more finely honed than mine, thanks to his years in law enforcement, had a much harder time, and, he ended up being awake for quite a while.

I really don't have a point to this story, other than to point out that I am a better smoke detector than any electronic device in my household, which is both interesting and terrifying. Also, credit goes to my husband for not smothering me in my sleep when I passed out after completely ruining his slumber; that took a lot of self control and I speak from experience, considering the number of times I have contemplated holding a pillow over his face when his snoring woke me from a sound sleep.

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Knock On Wood, Throw Salt Over One Shoulder, Do Whatever It Takes

I hate to jinx myself by saying this out loud, but...I haven't had a hot flash in three days.

I'm gonna let that sink in for a minute.

Three days, hot flash free.

Now, I am still flashing a bit at night, but, even without the new mattress (delivery was postponed to next Wednesday, whomp, whomp), I am sleeping a lot less crappily. New word! (SpellCheck begs to differ!).

While I have no doubt that this is merely another phase in the journey toward the nursing home, I'm totally going to enjoy it while I can (and please feel free to remind me of that when I inevitably start bitching about the flashes once they stage their comeback).

And, that's the latest update to the ongoing Saga of the Perimenopause.

Could my life be any less interesting? I think not. On the bright side, the Man-Cub will be home in 21 days! That's right; I am 21 days away from completing my first season as an empty nester, and I've mostly survived, intact.

Who would have thought?

Monday, April 16, 2018

Buying a New Mattress is a Lot Like Buying a New Car

Hugh and I have had the same mattress since roughly 2004 and it is beginning to show its age. We notice this most on mornings that we wake up tired and achy, and; I've definitely noticed it a lot recently, thanks to the disturbances in my sleeping patterns. Clearly, fourteen years of nightly use have broken down the materials, and, sleeping in padded divots is not conducive to a good night's sleep. You heard it here, first.

So, Saturday evening, we headed into Hooterville to price a new one, and, friends? Mattress shopping has changed a lot in fourteen years.

It took a solid two hours of reclining on the various floor models before we narrowed down our choice and then it took another half hour of negotiation to get the price down from Rolls Royce territory into the Chevrolet category. I'm not even kidding; we ended up paying about half of what I paid for my first car.

We also purchased a platform that raises the mattress at the head and foot, has a vibrating feature (no need to insert a quarter!), USB ports on each side of the bed, and an led light underneath. My favorite part, however, is the "anti-snore" feature, which will enable me to simply push a button on the remote control, at which point the bed will smother Hugh with a pillow.

Or, raise the head of the mattress just enough to regulate his breathing. Either way!

The price of the mattress and platform includes delivery and the the removal of our old mattress, so, not only will I be getting all new stuff, but, I won't be pressed into service to assist in carting heavy mattresses up and down our stairs; this is a service for which I would have gladly paid twice the price.

Delivery is expected sometime mid-week, at which point I will start comparing my Fitbit sleep reports to assess the new mattress; currently, I am awake an average of twice a night, with 10-19 episodes of restlessness. Any improvement will be welcome, and, at the price of a used car, the new mattress better deliver.

Stay tuned.

Friday, April 13, 2018

Friday Favorites

It's finally Friday, and, as predicted, the weather has turned to absolute crap. Thank you, Mother Nature. Thank you ever so much.

Happily, I have Snapchats from my offspring to brighten my day. Queen B recently discovered a new filter and she has been cracking me up with her efforts...

..while the Man-Cub made my week by sharing his recently shaved, adorably stubble-free, baby face...

...then, Queen B slayed me her impersonation of Boomerang, and, that was all she wrote.

Oh! I also got to wear the cutest wedges in my footwear wardrobe this week!

You know, before Mother Nature went off her bi-polar meds, dropping temperatures by thirty degrees and throwing a snow/rain mixture at us with gale-force winds.

Speaking of meds, what are the chances that insurance would cover Pinot Grigio as a treatment for perimenopausal symptoms?

Asking for a friend.


Anyhoodle, the picture above is of a chicken breast stuffed with mozarella, sundried tomato, and basil. I made it from a recipe I found on Pinterest and it became an instant favorite (the fact that it pairs nicely with Pinot Grigio is just a coincidence, I swear).

Oh, and, hey! Speaking of perimenopausal symptoms (hot flashes, I'm looking at YOU), I recently added a new weapon to my arsenal against night sweats; linen blend sheets! Seriously! They are hella expensive, but, worth every penny. Why? Because they don't hold moisture, which means I don't wake up twisted into a sweaty, damp, cold, clammy, juicy, moist, perimenopausal cocoon.

You're welcome for that image.


Thursday, April 12, 2018

Trashformation Thursday

When we were hunting for items for Queen B to refurbish for her school project, I happened upon this old army trunk.

It had definitely seen better days, but, I figured that, with a little love, it could shine like a star. Or, you know, look a little nicer. Either way.

The project required a lot of sanding since, somewhere along the way, the trunk had been painted in several layers of paint. Hugh stepped in with the hand sander when it became obvious that manual sanding of the damn thing would take well into the next century.

Once the majority of old paint was stripped, I wiped the trunk down with damp cloths to remove the dust. Then, I started on the metal components-stripping decades of grime off using three different solvents and uncovering hidden treasure; the lock is brass! And it's gorgeous!

Before I started painting, Hugh attached a set of wooden feet that I had purchased at the Home Depot in Hooterville.

Then, I painted the trunk with chalk paint in a color called Celery (Queen B's choice, damn child and her love for all things green!).

Once everything was dry, I distressed the trunk for a classic "shabby chic" look before waxing the feet with an antique wax (to mimic the metal components), and then the rest of the trunk with clear wax.

The inside of the trunk was in pretty good shape, requiring only a deep cleaning and a sheet of contact paper for a lining.

The trunk is now front and center in our guest room, providing extra storage space for quilts and sheets. I love the way it turned out and am now on the lookout for my next project. Happily, Kortni, Kristi, and I are headed to a flea market this weekend, so, fingers crossed!

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

It's Springtime in the Valley

Mother Nature has finally gotten the memo! The past few days have been warmer, the sun has been shining, and- mercifully-the winds have been calm, all of which have made for some really nice outdoor walks.

My partner on some of these walks hasn't been too bad, either.

As I've mentioned, Boomerang is doing really well on the leash. He's also been good when I've let him off-leash, fetching his ball and returning to my side with complete consistency. We've tried my usual walking/running trail at the park a couple of times (once, it was too muddy to do the complete trail) and I'm feeling confident that he will be able to do the entire five miles, once he gets used to it.

During the workweek, I have been taking solo walks on my lunch break (my co-workers have been crazy-busy and we haven't been able to schedule a walk together in AGES). The fruit trees downtown are in full bloom and I have enjoyed both the sight and the smell.

Of course, this weekend, another storm is supposed to blow into the valley, which, could bring snow along with colder temperatures. I would complain, but, it's Colorado and I know that it will change again on a dime. In the meantime, I'll enjoy the good days while I can and we will hunker down with lattes on the not-so-good days.

As one does in the Spring.

Sunday, April 08, 2018

Boomer and the Pussy Cats

Not to be confused with Josie and The Pussy Cats because, that was a band. Or, a cartoon; I'm a little fuzzy on the details.

Anyhoodle, Boomer and the pussy cats are getting along like a house on fire (where the hell did that saying originate? What does it even mean?). Boomer completely ignores their existence, which, is just fine and dandy with Guinness, who, likes to avoid confrontation and drama at all costs (Guinness is my spirit animal). Finnigan, on the other hand (Hugh's spirit animal, the reasons for which, you are about to learn) is more than a little miffed; he desires attention! He needs to be the alpha-dog in the household and is more irritated by being rendered invisible than he would be if Boomer confronted him. So, he hisses, pounces sideways toward Boomer to make himself seem bigger, and smacks at him with his paw.

And, Boomer stares right through him.

I would deem it a classic power struggle, except, Boomer refuses to participate; leaving Finn to struggle on his own. This is most entertaining to witness, let me tell you.

Eventually, Finn will stop pushing and merely assume victory (classic Napoleon Complex), Guinness will become more comfortable, and Boomer will realize that he shares this home with two other furry critters. Or, he won't, in which case, Finn will continue to consider himself the alpha-dog and Guinness will peace out whenever Boomer gets too close.

At least we aren't in danger of bloodshed anytime soon. I'll consider that a success.

*Not pictured: Guinness, who threw the peace sign and retired to the bedroom.

Friday, April 06, 2018

Friday Favorites

Boomerang continues to delight us! Yesterday, I learned that, in addition to fetching, he loves to go for walks. Not only that, but, he runs on the leash very well, pacing my stride without pulling ahead, crossing in front of me, or generally acting like an asshole determined to trip me.

Also, I have to believe that he's done this before; I wish we knew more about his life before us.

Anyhoodle, looks like I have a running partner! This will be especially nice when I run my old route around the park, because, sometimes, it felt a little sketchy to be there on my own, and, not just because of the zombie snakes.

 Hi there, dog. You can come live with me if you protect me from undead reptiles.

On the topic of running, I got a new pair of shoes! That probably doesn't sound all that exciting to you, but, considering that I hadn't bought a new pair in...oh...hell, I can't even remember when I bought my last new's pretty damn exciting to me.

New Balance: Perfect for leaping over undead reptiles!

Also, in shoe news, the weather has finally gotten nice enough to break out sandals on the regular. And, since I lost weight, I can wear my favorite old wedges without my feet ballooning up, cutting off my circulation and making me hobble about like Tiny Tim. This is great news!

Helloooo, pretty blue wedges! Oh, how I've missed you!

The nicer weather also means more frequent pedicures! I busted out some of my favorite shades of OPI the other night and I am planning to use them in rotation throughout the spring and summer.

Who am I kidding? I'll totally buy at least three new shades before summer is out

In other exciting news, when she was here last week, Mom helped me pick out some new bedding for my room. Not only is it beautiful, bright, and springy, but, it's really, really comfortable, as evidenced by the permanent divots being dug into the mattress, courtesy of the cats, who, have scarcely left the bed since I changed the linens.

Feline tested, Feline approved.

Wrapping things up, I'll mention that ibuprofen is definitely becoming a favorite, because, the soreness in my right arm, thanks to throwing a tennis ball approximately seven gazillion times in the last 24 hours, is intense.

I was not kidding when I said the dog likes to play fetch.

Thursday, April 05, 2018

Hits Me Like a Booomerang

Earlier this week, I saw a Facebook post from our local animal shelter; the post featured a dog that looked strikingly similar to our long-lost police canine, Trooper. So, like an idiot, I shared it to Hugh's page, asking him who it reminded him of.

The next day, Hugh casually mentioned that he was thinking about stopping by the shelter to see if the dog was still there. I shrugged and told him to do what he had to do because, honestly, I expected the dog to have already been adopted; he was gorgeous after all.

So, Hugh went to the shelter and met the dog, who, had not been adopted as it turns out. And, of course it was love at first sight, which, led to a very lengthy and spirited debate between the two of us:

Hugh:  I really want to adopt him.
Chelle: I really don't want another dog.
Hugh:  I really want to adopt him.
Chelle:  You're never home, the responsibility will fall on me and I don't want it.
Hugh:  I really want to adopt him.
Chelle:  I don't think you're hearing what I'm saying.

So, yeah.

Hugh has a new dog.

Until the dog realizes that I am the one feeding him, playing with him, walking him, etc. Then,  guess I have a new dog.

I named him Boomerang. Boomer, for short.

Boomerang fit him, perfectly, because; I've never met another dog that likes to fetch as much as this dog does. He could seriously fetch alllll day long. No matter what you throw, he will return it to your feet and wait (NOT patiently) for you to throw it again. He comes back like a boomerang, every single time.

Boomer ended up at the shelter as a stray. He's about three years old, in good health, and has had basic obedience training; he sits, lays, stays, and comes on command. He can shake hands and he's really, really sweet. The shelter was notified that someone had seen him on Craigslist, offered for re-homing by his owner, but, when they contacted the person who posted the ad, he denied that the dog was his and refused to take responsibility for him, so, he was made available for adoption. Not quite sure what was up with that, but, his loss is our (Hugh's) gain.

One really interesting thing about Boomer is the fact that his claws are capped with plastic tips. I assume that is because his previous owner had wood floors, but, I've never seen that on a dog. Cats, yes, a dog? No. Odd.

Anyhoodle, this is the new love of Hugh's life...

...he's only been with us for one night, so, I guess we'll see how it goes.

Monday, April 02, 2018

Easter Weekend Wrap-Up

What a great weekend we had! It was busy, for sure, but, I wouldn't have changed that for the world; I got to spend time with some of my favorite people, I ate like no one was watching, and I exercised my creative side in new and fun ways. Buckle up, this is going to be a long one!

Friday, after work, Mom and I loaded up Queen B's picnic set for delivery to Neighboring City (she sold it!). We dropped it off at her house and then hit the mall for pedicures and some fun shopping, visiting Queen B at her shoe store job along the way.

Saturday morning, we got an early start frosting some cupcakes that Mom had baked while I was at work earlier in the week. I finally busted out the Russian tips that I impulse-purchased during a late night Amazon shopping spree back around this same time last year. The results were impressive!

They were almost too pretty to eat, which, was a good deterrent for me given the fact that I am still not eating sugary foods. Not to worry, though; we planned to pawn them off on Oscar, Emily, and Queen B after Easter dinner on Sunday.

The day ended with the dying of Easter eggs, marking the first year since Queen B was born that we didn't have at least one of our offspring in attendance; that was a bittersweet fact of life that I am obviously going to have to get used to.

Anyway, we had plenty of eggs to devil for Easter dinner the following day, and, speaking of Easter dinner, Mom outdid herself this year!

She slaved over a hot oven all day Sunday, while Hugh, Queen B, and I worked on a few of Queen B's other restoration projects out in the garage. We appreciated her efforts and dug in with gusto, making sure to include the Man-Cub via FaceTime and Snapchat. He was naturally jealous of our feast, with the exception of the Brussels sprouts (his Snap on that matter was quite clear)

As I said at the beginning of this post, I ate like no one was watching! What I didn't say was that I will have to pay for it on the treadmill this week, but, that's a small price to pay for all-you-can-eat glazed ham.

The day (and the weekend) ended with the last glass of wine from the bottle pictured above. Today, Mom is headed back to Mayberry and I am headed to work. It's been really nice having her here and we will miss her.

Until next time!