Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Christmas Parade

Here's some photos from the Christmas parade.  Junior's little friend is the neighbor's grandson, Ryan.  He's the CUTEST kid with freckles I've EVER seen!  And these bags were FULL of candy when the parade ended.  I would love to know what Junior was thinking in this photo.
Yep, that's a SKULL on Junior's hat.  He's a total badass.
This is my favorite float in the parade.  I'm not sure what a National Sojourner does but they wear some kickass costumes!  
And here we have the redneck's parade entry.  Not only was the race car on display...IT WAS RUNNING!  Thank you for participating in the parade AND spending the cash for fuel.  I was way more excited to see this than Santa.  

Monday, December 29, 2008

Christmas wrap up

So Christmas was pretty awesome.  Junior is three now so he's REALLY into presents and their eventual "tearing."  For the two weeks before Christmas, all we heard is:  "Can I tear this present?  I want to tear this present!  Go ahead Mama, tear this one!"

Shopping was hard this year.  We just shelled out cash for one of the big boy's class ring and paid for both big boys to go on their annual youth trip at the Big God Conference in Myrtle Beach.  And big boys like big expensive toys.  It was a tough one but they got what they asked for and they seem happy.  (Except for my screw up buying the right game for the WRONG system.  It all worked out, Santa found the receipt.)

Of course, being the procrastinator I am, (hey, give me a break - I bought all the damned presents - mostly on time!  I even skillfully stacked them and camouflaged them with a sheet - the ones that would not fit under the big boys' beds.) I'm always wrapping presents until Christmas Eve.  Junior was being a good little elf helping with the placing of presents under the tree...until the one large box would not fit under the tree, even though it would slide up neatly next to the tree.  I didn't realize just how tired the little man was until that meltdown.  "Mama, de prez ant wont' fit under de tweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!"  Oh my!  Three rears its ugly head again.  Junior, would you like to revisit your new "I'm NOT taking a nap!" policy?  You should really think about it long and hard.

I did do a lot of holiday cooking.  I made crockpot candy and even got a little help spooning them out from a not-so-surly teenager (I reckon he knew Santa was watching).  174 pieces divided into three containers on a Friday turned into ONLY 1 container in the fridge by 7:30 am Monday.  It should be called CRACKpot candy, it's that good.

I finally opened the KitchenAid Stand Mixer box and made two batches of banana nut bread over two weekends.  Oh my!!  I can not describe the awesomeness of the KASM - there are no words.  Best. Kitchen. Accessory. EVER!!  

My favorite part of the KASM is the receipe prep.  It's like playing Alton Brown in your own kitchen!!  The KASM instruction manual preaches almost nothing but DO NOT OVER BEAT your goodies.  (This is probably a good rule to apply to most anything in life.  Do not over beat your goodies!)  You have to be READY! to put all your stuff in the mixer at the right time to avoid over beating.  Nothing like a little PRESSURE to go with your awesomely intimidating FIRST stand mixer EVER.

Junior and I decided we needed to make chocolate chip cookies for Santa.  Junior remembered this from last year!  So Junior and I have all kinds of ingredient bowls set out on the counter.  I'd left the butter in the mixer to soften earlier in the evening.  I spun the butter around a bit to make sure it was indeed softened and I was satisfied with the yellow mush so I unlatch the head thing and kick it back to scrape and add the eggs and sugar.  Junior is short and three so he's standing on a chair, right next to the mixer.  He sees the butter on the paddle and before I can say, "Noooooo!!!" he sticks out his tongue and LICKS the butter and says, "MMMM!  Deese cookies good!"  Dammit boy.

We got all the wet stuff in the mixer and it was time for the flour.  Junior did a good job of scooping it into the chute without getting most of it on the counter.  When they were done mixing I gave him the beater to "clean" and he was done after that.  He got what HE wanted, I was left to plop 'em out on the cookie sheets.  

Junior also remembered that we put carrots out for the reindeer last year and he asked to do it again this year.  I'm glad *I* remembered to buy carrots!!

Everybody but me slept in Christmas morning.  I'd been wanting to make fudge for the first time so I made a pot of coffee and started my fudge experimenting.  I had no clue it was SO EASY to make!  I can't believe I let myself be so intimidated for so long.  It was kind of scary when the boil started making the ingredients "grow" in the pan but it did not boil over the side of the pan.  The hardest part is scraping the marshmallow fluff out of the jar.  Sticky stuff!  

My last holiday cooking duty was to provide pinto beans and fry bread for the Friday night dinner.  Most of the family got together at Mom & Dad's and had Indian tacos.  Fry bread is hard work and well worth the reward.  I made two batches and there was only 1 bread left when we'd finished filling our gullets.  Also, I had flour ALL OVER my NEW shirt but managed to not get it all over the floor.  

Dinner was really good but my favorite part of the night had me acting like I was 10 years old again.  And torturing my younger siblings.  Again.  SO FREAKIN' GOOD!

Brudder and his family had just left and Junior and I were running around hiding from each other.  I was waiting in the dark hallway when Brudder came back in for the 3 items one always leaves when traveling with small children.  I heard him telling mom he left something in the back room and could hear him headed my way to get it.  I scooted back a little and crouched down like a cat.  Hell, I think I even wiggled a bit like kittehs do just before the ATTACK!  I should probably be ashamed that I was THAT excited.  But I am not.

I got him good though, just as he stepped to where I was I jumped up with a RAWR! and he did shriek a little as he jumped.  And it was a sweet sweet wave of HA!  I STILL RULE YOU! that washed over me.  So very awesome.

I hope you all enjoyed your Holiday Season as much as I did!  Here's to a prosperous NEW YEAR!


The winter ping pong season has started.  Being a bit fluffy and allergic to most things known as "exercise" I dig the pong.  Pong makes me move, jump around, curse, sweat and think.  The crushing of small plastic balls with paddles is really good for a girl's (is ego appropriate here?) (let's settle for something nice instead) winter exercise needs.  

The husband and I play at the neighbors' house.  Our neighbors have the best toys.  There must be some kind of toy quality/quantity ratio that becomes greater the older you get - directionally proportionate to your children growing up and move out/away.  OH MAN!!!  I can't wait to have awesome toys too!  

The women got off to a good start, despite being R-U-S-T-Y.  We won the first night of play but haven't done too well since.  The ladies don't play as often as the men folk do.  The men compete often because that's what boys do ya' know?  The women usually have their bitch-asses in the kitchen making pies.  Or not.  

We usually play women versus men because it's more fun that way and there's no fighting afterwards - just gloating.  The men are rather husbandly about their wins, just enough gloat to say "We won!" (and Please don't poison our dinner because we did win, please!?) Wives show no mercy.  Copious amounts of gloating ensue if the women win.  Us women tend to go for the throat (or lower) when we win.  

I can't think of many things that are more gratifying than busting their collective asses so when the ladies do win, it's awesome.  And quite often, in the middle of a match, if we're winning - I can hear "FINISH HIM!" in my mind.  And I just go crazy.  I get full-on possessed by the pong demons.  Sometimes they let me win but sometimes they get all backed up in there and I beat myself with very bad and greedy plays.

January and February are pretty damn drab at the beach.  Coldest time of year (for the beach - it's a real bitch compared to Minnesota, or so I hear.  Ha!).  I'm so glad it's pong season so we don't go stir crazy!  So what are YOU going to do for the next two months?  

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

I just heard a ROCK crumble.

This hurts me in my Redneck Parts:

"I don't work for Petty Enterprises," Petty told on Monday. "When they did their deal and sold to Boston Ventures, Chad [McCumbee] was going to drive the second car and Bobby [Labonte] was going to drive the first car; they pretty much let me know there wasn't a place for me there going into '09. My deal runs out at the end of the year, but I don't go over there [to the shop in Mooresville, N.C.] because I don't work there."

As seen here.

I heard that quote yesterday morning on my way to the sitter's house and I almost wrecked the dang car, I was THAT shocked. SHOCKED!

Taking a Petty out of THE Petty, you might as well just give them all VW Beetle Bugs to race around in.

Best. Headline. EVAR.

Can Obama Escape the Taint of Blagojevich? (seen here)

Why is he that close? See "taint" at Urband Dictionary.

Seriously - did NO ONE read that headline outloud before press time?

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Day two: The Reckoning

So....I got my car crash money today. I wish I could say it was a pleasant experience.

I can't, so I won't.

How very interesting that Daddy is a body man and that "it can just be buffed out." You can't buff out a dent, dude. Not that it's a major dent but it's a dent still the same.

This is the only new car I've ever bought. After realizing just what the hell buying a new car really means ($$ over time) I will never do so again. And as I'm VERY close to making the last payment, I'm looking forward to driving this car for a very, very, VERY long time. I would not look forward to driving it around with a buffed out dent.

Daddy questioned me on how many estimates I got. Well, I got one estimate. One. From the shop of my choice. Is it rude of me to believe that if "we want to pay this, not file insurance" then I should be able to do all the damned legwork at MY leisure and do business with who I want to?

Also he didn't seem very happy about my choice of shop. They probably are a little more expensive, I don't doubt it. My company has used them in the past and when I had to have work done, I used them as well. I was very pleased so naturally, I would return to the same company. Only this time I had to have cash in hand and go thru all the paperwork b/s. MY leisure.

I find it weird that almost as soon as they walked in, Mommy made note to tell me she's not Jackass's mom but Daddy's Girlfriend. Am I busted? Was I Facebooked or Myspaced from the "Record of Collision?" Did they read yesterday's blog? But all I can say to Girlfriend is BLESS YOUR HEART for loving such a peach of a man that Daddy is (or at least seemed to be today).

I'm not happy in the fact that they came to pay up for Jackass's mistake and now I'm the one who feels like an ass. I WAS NICE. I TYPED A STATEMENT SAYING I GOT THE MONEY. I MADE COPIES. Color copies, dammit.

Jackass, so sorry this happened. I hope you will very seriously consider your left-hand turns from this day forward. After today's pleasantry, I can only hope that things get better for you. I hope you pay your dad back quickly and get this all behind you.

Unless you have a crazy driving record....personally, I would have taken the insurance hit. It only stings for a bit and when the monthly statement comes once a month it doesn't have jet-black sideburns and an icy-cold stare.

Monday, December 8, 2008

FAIL: Driving down Main Street

So I'm on my way to the post office and BLAM! A dude in a truck decided he and I needed to play bumper cars.

Truck dude was making a LEFT out of a parking lot onto Main Street. We have those lovely TURN LANES in the middle of the road so I thought he was going to whip it into the turn lane and wait for me to pass by before he got into the right (my) lane.

PSYCHE!!! He wasn't trying to get into the turn lane, he was bringing it on out. Out and right into my rear quarter panel.


The crash was not very hard, hard enough to know jackass made contact but it didn't push me over onto the street curb.

I pulled over into the parking lot of EVERYBODY EATS HERE FOR LUNCH buffet place and called 911. I call bossman to let him know I'll be a while. I call Husband to share my exciting news.

Jackass and I make idle chit cat waiting for the poe leece to arrive.

Jackass proceeds to tell me he didn't see me. Um...YO! DOG! I'm driving an SUV, what did you NOT see? The he tries to tell me that he thought I was further back in traffic. I fight every fiber of my being to not shout GET YOUR DAMNED PRESCRIPTION CHECKED!! into his coke-bottle glassed eyes.

Based on the "didn't see" excuse he gave and the fact we're sitting here as a result of a LEFT TURN gone wrong, I politely tell jackass that if I'd been riding a motorcycle when he'd turned left into me I'd be dead. Jackass tries to tell me, "Oh no, you'd probably just fall over and get a little dinged up. I have bikers in my family." To that little tid bit, I add, "Well Jackass, one of my very bestest girlfriends was killed when a driver turned left into her. She did not get banged up, her guts were squished up into her body and she died." I decided I'm done talking to Jackass.

Then his mom shows up.

His MOM.

And the poe leece arrive. TWO CARS! I tell 911 there's no injuries, both vehicles run and still they send two cars.

Of course, the poe leece DO NOT give Jackass a ticket. We're both given one of these lovely "Record of Collision" reports. "Vehicle #1 was traveling North in Northbound land when Vehicle #2 pulled out of Duffer's and merged into the back side of #1."

Jackass's mommy inspects the damage and proclaims there's hardly any damage. Mommy informs me that Daddy would rather pay for the repair instead of filing insurance. Mommy gives me cell phone numbers of Mommy and Daddy and we part ways.

According to the collision report, Jackass is 19. He was born the summer I graduated from high school. The ONLY car crash I've caused happened when I was 19. And it was something stupid just like Jackass.

I was pulling a left from a side street into a 4 lane highway. I pulled into the lane closest to me but I hung out the front end a tad too much into the right lane and hit the back tire of a four-door sedan full of old folks. I cried so hard because I was so worried about those old folks. They were awesome and polite to me. My mommy did not have to come to the crash scene. My parents didn't pay for my mistake. I paid some pretty good insurance premiums for a while but that's the point, right? There's a penalty for YOU when YOU screw up.

I have not caused a crash since. I learned.

When mommy brings me a check from Daddy tomorrow, what is Jackass going to learn?

Friday, December 5, 2008

Making new friends

When I was a Camp Fire girl we used to sing this song:
Make new friends but keep the old;
One is silver and the other's A NASCAR DRIVER

Well, it didn't go exactly like that, but you get the idea.

I've been thinking about some friends from long ago and I finally started a Facebook account. I thought maybe I could find my old friends and maybe someone is actually looking for me.

Don't laugh - but I currently only have three friends.

1) She who brought the crazy from the first day I met her. She was the ONLY person who talked to me the day I was the new kid at school.

2) She who's parents live on the end of my street. And married one of the hottest guys in our class. Way to go sister!

3) He who drives fast.

That's right. I'M TOTALLY FRIENDS WITH CHAD MCCUMBEE!! How kick ass is that?

(And how disappointing - even at the truck drivers continue to get the shaft. The cup drivers have snappy photo links, trucks just get a text listing. GGRR!!!)

The trucks are WAY more exciting than the cars (cup or nationwide) and as a fan of said racing, they're ALWAYS getting the shaft from the publicity team.

When I saw him in the "friends of your friends that you may know" list I was psyched.

This is going to be long and complicated but stay with me. My neighbor lady's first husband (and oldest 2 children) are somehow related to Chad's wife (I think). The children went to Chad's wedding last year and I got to see their photos. Freakin' awesome.

I thought about saying something about the wedding that in my "hey I want to be your friend" comment but I thought that might be too stalkery. So I told the rest of the truth: We dig watching you race trucks, we get psyched when you're driving cars and thanks for making Brunswick County proud.

When he first started in the truck series I begged, BEGGED for our company to toss him some sponsorship money. The company entertains clients at a lot of races and I figured they'd love it. I figured wrong and I was SO disappointed.

If I ever hit the lottery I know where my money is going...ON CHAD'S TRUCK. Even if it's only enough for one race.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Road Rage

It’s no secret that I hate driving. Well, I actually love to drive but I HATE the jerks I’m sharing the road with. I often find myself wanting to write a letter to the editor but I’m so very afraid my letter will turn into a Unabomber-type manifesto. I live in a smallish town so I’m not looking to be labeled as “that crazy letter-writin’ lady” and getting stared down at the Walmart. Not for that reason anyways.

But you people seriously make me CRAZY!

Tuesday, there was a wreck at an intersection on the backroads of town. The speed limit is only 35 where this crash occurred so I’m really curious to know exactly what happened in the collision to cause an AMBULANCE to turn over on it’s side and a small car turn into a pile of scrap metal.

At least the ambulance was not in service with a patient when the crash occurred. That’s having a really bad day…a ride in an ambulance – THAT CRASHES! Eek!

There were two folks in the ambulance, riding up front and two folks in the, what used to be, a Nissan. Everyone went to the hospital and one of them was airlifted to the “dude, you got some serious crap WRONG with you” hospital in the big city.

I’ll repeat: The speed limit at this intersection is 35 miles per hour.

I read today’s smallish town newspaper and the Board of Aldermen are already talking about converting this intersection (and it’s bastard cousin one block prior) to a four-way stop. Dammit man – these idiots can’t even drive 35 mph and obey a stop sign – now you want to insert some right of way rules here? Are you crazy!?

One Alderman lives between the two intersections and says this is the third crash at this intersection in five weeks. He proclaims it to be the most dangerous intersections in town.

I call BULLSHIT on that one.

It’s not the intersection. It’s the same damn intersection and stop sign that’s been there for at least the past 30 years. Granted, the town or DOT gets lazy and lets the trash vines grow up the pole in the spring but I’ve never seen it cover the sign.

The problem is a bad driver problem.

The ambulance was probably going to pick up a patient at the nursing home or the assisted living place. The ambulance would have been driving on the road that had the right of way. The car must have been the one who ignored the stop sign.

Was the Nissan driver: On the cell phone? Listening to the GPS lady? Talking to the passenger?

One thing is sure; the Nissan driver was NOT paying attention to DRIVING. That’s what the magic box on wheels does. You turn the big circle and mash the pedals. YOU direct where it’s going. Unless you’re too busy doing something else, like not driving.

And now we have a GOVERNMENT trying to save the CITIZENS from STUPID. What ever happened to personal responsibility?

When I was in high school, a classmate ran a stop sign and crashed her car at the bastard cousin intersection. She got messed up pretty bad too, as in had to relearn to walk and miss the prom bad. Her smashed up car was on display in the quad for us to see. I’m sorry she was hurt but I am so thankful she lived and shared a lesson with all of us. I often think of her when I stop at that intersection.

And the big boys started Driver’s Ed classes today.

The big boys who can’t comprehend that when they walk to the trash can and it’s full, they should empty it instead of smashing shit further into the can. The big boys who can’t remember to put the trash on the curb on trash day. The big boys who can’t remember to bring school paperwork home. The big boys who get ZEROs on open-note tests. Dude, seriously? It’s OPEN NOTE!!

And now they want to drive cars. SIGH.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Rewind it

Elder spawn, Husband and I were watching something on the TV this weekend. Something happened and we wished we could have rewinded what we were seeing.

Elder spawn: Too bad we can't rewind that.

Husband: We need a Devo.

Me: So we can whip it good?