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Friday, September 28, 2012

If I Were

Hello, hello shiny happy people! So here's the deal, I saw this post on Janna Renee's blog and she took it from Lesley who grabbed it from Niina (whew I know). Normally I don't do bandwagons but this one seemed like a fun idea. Feel free to copy and paste it on your blog (or share your answers in the comments section below). Without further ado:

If I were a gemstone, I'd be a sapphire.
If I were a scent, I'd be sweet pea.
Courtesy of: http://www.zone10.com/sweet-peas.html
If I were a pair of shoes, I'd be a pair of knee high leather boots.
If I were the weather, I'd be a sunny 70 degree spring day.
If I were a facial expression, I'd be a lopsided grin.
If I were a car, I'd be a cobalt blue Shelby Mustang GT500 with white racing stripes on the hood
Courtesy of: http://www.dfwstangs.net
 
If I were a time of day, I'd be noon.
If I were a month, I'd be May.
If I were a place, I'd be Austin, TX.
If I were a liquid, I'd be a nice Merlot.
If I were a taste, I'd be cherry vanilla ice cream
If I were a sea animal, I'd be a dolphin.
If I were a food, I'd be a Shepherd's Pie.
If I were a color, I'd be PINK.
If I were a musical instrument, I'd be a drum.
If I were a flower, I'd be a daffodil.
If I were a planet, I'd be Venus
If I were an object, I'd be a record player
If I were a fruit, I'd be a mango.
If I were a sound, I'd be wind chimes
If I were a day of the week, I'd be a Friday.
 
Okay your turn. TAG YOU'RE IT!!

Bugs Are Just Ignorant

I hate bugs. Always have, always will. But I hate them more when they do rude, ignorant things. Like bite me. I make a habit of trying not to wear scented lotions or flowery smelling deodorant because I don't want them thinking I'm food. But apparently some bugs love them some dark meat. Now summertime I expect to get bit and I make efforts not to. Bug spray and whatnot. But now that fall is creeping in I expect them to leave me alone and go hide somewhere. Nope looks like they want to stick around and try and make friends.

Arm bites, leg bites, whatever not a big deal. Just grab the Benadryl or Cortisone 10 slather it on and go about my day. But some areas should be off limits because frankly some bites are just rude. Like the one I have in my armpit. Yeah that's not cool at all. I am hurt and/or offended by some bug thinking my armpit was a snack. Usually I have the blanket pretty securely around me when I sleep. Not last night. For some odd reason I wanted my shoulders out and my arm was above my head. Woke up on my back with my arm still above my head. I'm guessing at some point when I rolled over Mr. Rude Bug decided he was hungry and that moment was an opportune time to feed. Bugs you are officially on notice now. I'm going to defog my house and kill every single one of you. So enjoy your free time now because it will all come to an end soon. I'm half tempted to get bug strips and watch them squirm. Thankfully I won't need to do any maintenance in there for a few more days, which should give that bug bite time to go away. Fingers crossed.


Thursday, September 27, 2012

To-Screw-You List


I was adding something to my To-Do list when a thought randomly bitch slapped me in the face. When the hell was the last time my To-Do list was To-Done?? I'm a somewhat reformed procrastinator so I figured a while back, that if I made a hierarchy for my To-Do lists then I would be more structured get more stuff done. Yadda yadda that is a bunch of crap. This hierarchy plan is just as bad as procrastinating.

Here's how it works in my head: #1. School, #2. Everything Else.

It seemed like such a good idea at the time. I'll focus on getting projects done and turned in on time. And somehow everything else will just fall into place. I wish I could blame that on being in a seriously altered medication and Jack Daniels fog, but I was stone sober when I thought that one up. See the big problem is there's really no structure to it. Okay so school stuff gets done first, or I'll at least attempt to get school stuff done first. Unless I have a doctor's appointment, or I don't feel well, or I promised someone I'd do something at a certain time in a designated area. So things are constantly getting shuffled around on that list. And it's not like the classes are boring it just seems like there's always something in my way.

Monday I was pretty organized. Got more discussion posts in, finished my one reading and worked on rolling out Bionic Dee 2.0. Tuesday, little organized. Got my final discussion posts in, finished my second reading and started looking at my upcoming assignments, then put some final tweaks on this blog. Wednesday (I know I'm not the only one who says wed-nes-day when they're typing out Wednesday to make sure they spelled it right), all over the place. Got distracted because of a career fair my school was hosting so I spent all day with that and playing around with stuff on here. Didn't get a single thing done as far as early prep on my assignments for this week. So today will be catch up day. Figuring out what research I need to do for my project, starting my readings and seeing if I can get my initial discussion posts in (those might be pushed back to Friday when I normally do them). I spend all weekend juggling homework and working on projects. By the time Sunday rolls around I'm already running through the stuff that needs to be done for the upcoming week. Oh the cycle never ends does it. Debating whether I want to be nice to myself and watch a movie before bed or get cozy with a reading assignment.

Side note: Just found out I can highlight things in Adobe PDF files. WOOO! I'm still not a huge fan of e-books (which my school loves to use), so this was one of my last holdout reasons for not liking them. Sucks it's a yellow highlight and not the pink one I love using for physical books. Oh well. 

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Welcome

                      


      xoxoxo   WELCOME TO MY NEW HOME xoxoxo

Welcome to the new and improved Bionic Dee! For those of you who followed me over from WordPress I'd like to say thanks for staying with me {{HUGS}}! And for those of you who are new to this blog, hello fresh meat. I had to make some changes recently and with that came the switch to a new blogging platform. So from now on this is where all the random, lovely, funny, craziness of this blog will be happening. So if you're new around here feel free to poke around through my posts and leave comments. You don't need to be a blogger to leave me some love on any of the posts you see on here. If you're curious to learn more about me there's a page on here somewhere that goes into more about me. Again, thank you old friends and welcome new ones I think you're going to like it around here. Hugs and ass slaps xoxoxo!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Dear NFL Commissioner

I'm going to keep this short and sweet because I have a bunch of things to cross of the to-do list today. Mainly homework and appointments, okay 5% appointments and 95% homework because I'm trying to work ahead. I may have mentioned once or twice about how I'm a sports fan. Well one of my beloved sports is losing it's integrity. Football.....dear sweet football. Greed and stubbornness and seriously sloppy calls ruined what should have been a great game of Monday Night Football. Thanks to the poor calls made my replacement NFL referees something that was clearly an interception was ruled a touchdown. So this message is for Roger Goodell, NFL Commissioner....

Dear Roger Goodell,

Frankly I don't understand what the huge hold up is with the owners settling things with the real referees. This isn't an issue that concerns billions of dollars. And in the end the increase the league would have to make to accommodate the referees really isn't much. As Peter King said, "the difference between the NFL and the refs' union is $3.3 million a year. Well, there are 256 regular season games. The NFL could have the real refs if it forked over an extra $12,891 per game.

That is less than 20 cents for every paying customer."


I can't completely blame the replacement refs because the league and owners put them in a situation they weren't prepared to handle. So please do all NFL fans and players a favor and end this now. Bring back our refs so we can restore what's left of football's dignity before it's too late.


Sincerely,

A Disheartened NFL Fan

Monday, September 24, 2012

Fantasy Football

Are you ready for some footbaaallll! I've had the theme song for Sunday Night Football and Monday Night Football stuck in my head since I was little. Have I mentioned before that I'm a sports addict. Yeah addict is putting it nicely. I have apparel for every team I root for, except rugby because I'm still undecided on that one. I get text alerts sent through ESPN, got the ESPN app high on my go to list on my phone, ESPN and every team's website is bookmarked on my toolbar. So yeah I like sports a little, LOL.

My favorite has always, and will always be football. That's the first sport my mom and I bonded over. Being raised in Texas she was a Cowboys fan. As mommy's little girl I wanted to follow in her footsteps. But since I'm from Philly it wouldn't be a good idea for me to be a Cowboys fan, people get pretty heated over that rivalry. So I'm a Pittsburgh Steelers fan. WOO! I do have hometown loyalties to the Philadelphia Flyers and Phillies though.

I've never been afraid to voice my opinion when guys have a sports debate in my presence. Usually I get a confused look because there are lots of guys who assume that women know nothing about sports and I'm just rooting for my man's team. Not the case. I have no problem talking smack on sports I follow. So last year one of my friends got me to join his fantasy football league because I said something about being interested in trying it out. I didn't do too bad for my first year, think I finished 7 out of 10. Not too shabby if I say so myself. Of course when the time came this year I scoured Yahoo, ESPN and NFL.com for leagues to join. Because of all the downtime I have thanks to my back injury I ended up in four different leagues. Mostly because people weren't active so I kept trying to find leagues where people were active. There's nothing more irritating than people who auto-draft. I understand if you have to work or something comes up. But with all the options out there you can find a league that fits your schedule. Whatever. Now the first thing I check on Mondays are the current match-ups to see how I'm doing. I don't do it for monetary prizes, I do it for bragging rights. Right now I'm winning 3 out of 4, hopefully I get a great game and the points I need to make it 4 out of 4 after tonight's game. We shall see

Sunday, September 23, 2012

International Love

No this isn't a shout out to Pitbull, although his songs are great to workout to. Just wanted to say HELLO to the new visitors who stopped to check out my blog. Thank you France, Great Britain, Russia, Germany, China, Norway, Taiwan, New Zealand and Finland! I haven't forgotten about you USA, Canada, Denmark, Australia, Colombia and the Netherlands. I still love you! It is pretty cool to see people from the countries of my ancestors enjoying my blog.

For the scoop on my genealogy check out this post --> DNA Road Maps

Now all I need is someone from Greece, Libya, Ukraine and Ireland to make my family circle complete! :-)

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Check Check Check....Check It Out

One of my favorite bloggers has allowed me to be a guest blogger on her page. This is a great way for bloggers to expose their audience to other blogs and spread the love. So without further ado.....here is the link to the page my first guest post is on. And please check out the rest of her blog it is awesome! Spread the love and meet someone new.

My First Guest Post: Settling for So-So

Crisp Air

It's funny how some people assume that whatever season you were born in is your favorite. I'm a winter baby, and I don't know many winter babies that are too fond of that season. Me I'm all spring and fall. Spring is just warm enough to wear t-shirts and enjoy the feel of the sunshine on your face. Fall is still a bit warm but just cold enough for hoodies and sweatshirts minus a jacket on top. Now this is one of my favorite sweatshirts.


Besides the fact that it says NAVY, it's also super comfy. Fall also means I can wear boots. YAYYY!!! I love love love a good pair of boots. My preferred footwear. I have a pair I bought a couple years ago that I need to have fixed, issue with the zipper. Knee high black boots, jeans and a hooded sweater. That's my kind of outfit right there! What's your favorite season or go-to outfit?

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Back to the Grind

Today I start another 10 week semester. Technically 9 weeks since the last week is just for professors to catch up on late submissions and get final grades in. 9 weeks of scattered sleep, research sessions, writing sessions, re-writing sessions, reading until my eyes hurt and posting lots and lots of posting on our discussion boards. I love the online college platform because it's flexible to the random needs of my life. I think if I was going to a traditional school I'd probably lose what's left of my sanity a lot quicker. Plus I'd feel weird being in a lecture hall surrounded by 17-18 year olds when I'm 30 going on 31. Cause you know it only takes one person to find out I'm over 21 and then all of a sudden "Hey can you buy us beer?" Ummm....no not risking fines so you can get wasted it's not happening kiddo. It takes a lot of OCD level organization to keep me on track. Sometime during my sophomore year I started going out and getting these giant wall calendars to keep everything organized. This is what my current semester looks like.....

(Pretty accurate visual for what goes on in my head....even the black scribbles...think those would be urggghhh in my head)

But what about doctor appointments and other things you say....that's what the calendar on my phone is for. Not going to clog this calendar up with non-school stuff. This semester I only have 7 papers to do, which is less than last semester, they're all 3-6 pages except my final that's 6-10 pages. Well every semester I find some way to streamline my life. Last semester I started working ahead on a bunch of papers and I had 5 of my last 10 done weeks in advance. Gives me more time to stress over the bigger projects. Don't worry I won't disappear and let cobwebs start forming on this blog. I might not get on here everyday but at least every other day. Time for me to see what I can work on ASAP.



Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Settling for So-So

Ladies tell me if this story sounds familiar.......

You're tired of dealing with the same riff raff and lame excuses for men you meet in bars and other social settings so you start looking at your guy friends hoping to find "Mr. Right." You start spending more time with, let's call him Joe, a funny guy you've been friends with for a few years. Been dating Joe for a few months and everything's going well until you start seeing signs. You say you want to go out more but all Joe wants to do is sit around and play on his XBox or watch TV. It's okay you'll save money by not going out all the time, and you both love watching that one show together so it's no big deal. When you talk on the phone Joe goes on and on about how he hates his job blah blah blah and he only wants to talk about himself. But when he goes out and gets drunk he's all "I love you" "I miss you." And you think it's sweet that you're the first thing he thinks about when he drunk dials. You're at his place, as always, he's telling the same story you've already heard him talk about ten times around his friends. You start talking about something from your past and he shuts you down. Says he doesn't care what happened in your past because the past is the past and he doesn't want to know about it. You tell him it's important that he understands what's happened in your life. But Joe says he doesn't want to know about the bad things that happened, they're in the past.

I was with a guy just like Joe for almost 3 years. Everything I mentioned up there was exactly how he was. Oh I forgot something, he was rude and ignorant to his mom. Why was I with him for so long? Because I was a lonely fool settling for someone who sometimes made me happy. Not all the time, but sometimes. Every once in a while he would do something sweet and that made me brush off all the bad stuff. His mom loved me and I would go out of my way to get her great birthday, Mother's Day and Christmas presents. I would hang out with her in the kitchen while he sat on his ass watching her TV. We were tight because she knew how much I missed my mom. I never once saw him do anything nice for her, but he loved eating her food.

I stayed with him because I didn't want to deal with the dating scene anymore. I thought he was good enough for the time being. That right there is the problem. You can't settle for "good enough" or someone who's nice to you sometimes instead of all the time. Stevie Wonder could've seen the signs I had in front of me. He's one of those guys that's never going to be the man you need. Hell he's nothing more than a man-child. Fear of the unknown and not wanting to work on finding a good man made me settle and stay with him much longer than I should have.

You can't be happy with someone who doesn't give a rat's ass about you! If the only time he wants to hang out with you is when you go drinking, there's a sign that he really doesn't care about what you want. I don't care what they say about the truth coming out when you're drunk, that is some bull. Because if you can't say I love you when you're sober, don't say it when you're drunk and think you can get in my panties. If he doesn't care about learning about your past and really getting to know you, then he doesn't care. You're just a show piece, somebody to occupy his time until he finds someone willing to do what you won't and be treated much worse. Worst one in my opinion is if he treats his mom like trash you better never get pregnant by him because he's gonna teach your child to treat you like trash. Thankfully my birth control held up and that didn't happen.

Bottom line: You have got to demand more of yourself and whoever you're with. Doesn't matter if your partner is male of female. If they show signs that your needs aren't important or your values aren't important, RUN FORREST RUN! They can't be bothered to get to know you then those legs stay closed. Can't force anyone to change and you can't force anyone to give a damn about you. Don't settle for half a relationship with someone who's so-so. Find yourself someone who loves to see you smile and will always be there to wipe your tears when you cry.

Woe Is Me

Every once in a while we have those moments where it feels like life is just too much to deal with. Woe is me this or that is making life difficult. I know I've had my share of "woe is me" times, especially during the past few months with my struggle to adjust to this back injury. I put on my sad face crown, slip into a black dress and have my own little pity party for a while. I'm not alone in this though. You've done it too at some point, or maybe you're doing it right now. There's nothing wrong with having a "woe is me" moment, it's natural. When something bad happens you're going to get bummed out or depressed for a bit until you find a way out of it. So put on your black duds and have your little pity party. But don't let it become your life. There's a difference between having a moment of "okay this sucks" and a full on "eff my life I'm always a victim." Life isn't perfect, life will never be perfect. A perfect life would be boring anyways. Believe me I'm not a fan of constantly dealing with BS, but that's life. Random things are going to happen that you can't control, and they won't all be positive.

The problem starts when you let those random moments overwhelm you. You're rushing down the street and someone  else who's rushing down the street bumps into you and spills coffee all over you. It sucks but it was an accident. You put get out of the car and your cellphone that was sitting on your lap falls to the ground and your screen cracks. Okay that blows, but again accident. Unless you could've done something to prevent the act from happening there is absolutely no reason to go on and on about having a rough life if random accidents happen. It's the people that let their life spiral out of control that I have an issue with.

I bet you know exactly what kind of people I mean before I even start describing them. Tim is always publicly posting on Facebook about how he can't find a good job. Now Tim goes into interviews in dirty or wrinkled clothes, acts unprofessional or shows up a half hour late every time without bothering to let them know he'll be late. Tim's been fired from every job because of attitude problems and not getting his work done. So once again Tim starts whining about how "he had that interview locked down" and he can't understand why they wouldn't hire him. Tim says "people just don't want to give him a chance" and "they are idiots for probably giving the job to some foreigner." You see how Tim makes it sound like he's a victim and no matter how hard he tries he just can't catch a break. Never mind the fact that his first impression is a bad one because he shows up late, doesn't bother to iron his clothes and make sure they're clean, and he acts like a moron during the interview. Any reference check of previous employers is going to end up badly because they'll talk about how lazy and unreliable he is. Plus it doesn't help that he publicly bashes companies on Facebook. People seem to forget about that wonderful thing called Google. Anything and everything your name is attached to will show on if they search your name. So all those posts about how this company is stupid or that boss is a moron, yeah they'll see that and it won't help you look too good before you come in for that interview. Mmmhmm you know someone just like that!

There are so many people out there that don't bother to fix the things in their life that they have control over. Don't put things on Facebook you don't feel like having to defend to a boss or possible employer. We've all met or known someone who just sits there and lets their life spin out of control. Letting their kids act a fool and not stepping in to be a parent, they just whine about it. Publicly posting negative things about wondering why people think they have a bad attitude. If you don't take responsibility for the things you can control, don't bother bitching after the fact. You're the only one who can fix your life. If you're waiting for someone else to do it for you...well you'll be waiting forever. Get off your pitiful behind, put on your big girl/big boy panties and start changing things.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Whatcha Reading?? Lone Survivor

Not everyone believes in war, I believe it's a necessary evil sometimes when we have to protect our country from outside threats. I've been pro-military for a long time because my grandfather made the choice to serve his country as a member of the United States Navy during World War II. My boyfriend also made that same choice and served in the Navy 18 years ago. This book I'm about to show you came into my life as a happy accident. I had to do this project for school and one of the questions asked about a book that inspired me I believe. I didn't feel like digging through my collection, since I had most of it packed in storage bins. So I started looking through biographies and autobiographies and I came across this book......

 

(One of the best books I've ever read!!!)

I can't even remember the last time a book made me sob uncontrollably for someone I'd never met. I mega love Marcus Luttrell for finding the strength and courage to get through this. Hooyah Marcus Luttrell! There are three kinds of people in this country: those who serve in the military, those who are proud of the sacrifices military men and women make for millions of strangers, and well I'm not wasting space on the third kind if you get my drift. It's unimaginable how people find the strength to live through situations like what Marcus describes in his book. You will laugh, you will smile and if you don't shed a tear then you sir/ma'am have a cold cold heart. GET.THIS.BOOK!
Follow him on Twitter: @Marcus Luttrell

Friday, September 14, 2012

Whatcha Reading?? Lies My Teacher Told Me

I was going back and forth trying to figure out whether I wanted to promote things on here or not. I've decided I will. Now when I made this decision I crossed some things off the list immediately. I'm not going to get into discussing movies and TV shows, I'm not a critic. Or music for that matter because I don't listen to the radio on a regular basis anymore, I have playlists to get me through the day. What I will pimp out on my page, besides blog posts I love, are books. I mentioned before that I'm a HUGE BOOKWORM. So every once in a while I will spread the love for books that really catch my attention.  Soooo.....first book to be pimped out....

[caption id="attachment_234" align="aligncenter" width="362"]
(Lies My Teacher Told Me by James W. Loewen)

Now I'm not someone who scours the NY Times Bestseller list looking for new books to buy. I like to wander around the bookstore from section to section looking at titles. Which would explain my completely random collection of books. So when I saw this one I stopped, had that confused head tilt dogs do, and crept over to the book and started flipping through it. My, my how interesting. Needless to say it came home with me. This book is all about challenging the conventional way history textbooks discuss life before we were born. James Loewen makes a great point about how the majority of textbooks whitewash history and make heroes out of people who probably shouldn't be. I'm only into the second chapter but this book makes you sit there and go "Why in the hell didn't I ever think that was odd" or "Now that you mention it, what's up with that??" Here's an example: In a lot of history textbooks Woodrow Wilson has always been credited with championing women's right to vote. <--Now that is pure bullshit. Wilson was NOT a fan of giving women the right to vote and he was a huge, HUGE RACIST. He used to make "darky" jokes during cabinet meetings. Another good point Loewen brings up is the fact that nobody talks about Helen Keller's life after Anne Sullivan taught her Braille. Well here's an insight for you, Helen Keller was a socialist and supported Communism. Betcha right now you're opening Google and searching for that info..go right ahead. Then find this book and get yourself a copy because there is much more learning ahead beyond what I've shared.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Are We Truly Free (A Must Read From A Fellow Blogger)

"In talking to a friend on Facebook, I can’t help for feel sorry for those who have to “hide” who they truly are. America, we are taught, is the Land of the Free. But is it really that Free?

People are hiding their sexuality and faith. If America is so Free, why must we hide?"

Okay that's all you get, there's your sample, if you want to read more click on the link below and feel free to show her some love about this thought provoking post.

Are We Truly Free

R.E.S.P.E.C.T.

I was about to get in the elevator when this boy, couldn't have been more than 15, pushed past me and got in ahead of me. The only reason he had room to get by me was because the man standing in front of the elevator moved back so I could go in. I went from thankful smile to pissed off wrinkly forehead and clenched jaw. The man by the elevator just shook his head "What happened to having respect?"

You know what, that's a damn good question. Girls talk about anything and everything in public. From baby daddy issues to who gave them an STD to what shoes they want to buy. Guys having conversations where every other word is a curse word. I know it's a versatile word but come on, you mean to tell me you can't go five seconds without dropping the F-bomb?! It's not just teens, it's supposedly "grown ass adults" who don't seem to know how to respect themselves let alone anyone else.

I blame their parents. I was 18 before I cursed in front of my mom. And I still ducked when I said it. There's a time and a place for everything. But I'm not surprised since people these days are more concerned with picking apart a celebrity's life than improving their own. When people think there's nothing wrong with being 16 & Pregnant there's no such thing as class, decency or respect.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

My First Job

I've had some interesting jobs in my lifetime. I've worked almost steadily since the age of 16 up until now. The only time I didn't have a job was during the 6 months I was at Stockton College in NJ and while I was at The Restaurant School. Well technically I did work when I was at The Restaurant School, I just didn't get paid for it. Anywho, my first job was working for the Summer Housing Department at the University of Pennsylvania. Say what now? Yeah I know not your typical job for a teenager, but I liked it. I got the job because of my mom, she worked at UPenn in the Academic Housing department. I basically grew up on that campus. When I was little I used to love walking through the mini parks they had scattered around the campus. All of her co-workers loved me and I loved tagging along with them whenever my mom was busy. Kind of funny that outside of my mom and her best friend Ms. Jean these were the only people who called me by my full first name instead of my nickname. I think they just loved saying my name I don't know.


 (This is the high rise my mom worked in....Hi Academic Housing!!)

As a kid I had no clue what my mom's job really meant, all I knew was she worked in a high rise and dealt with a lot of cranky people all day. There's a difference between middle class cranky and rich cranky. When I turned 16 my mom thought it was time for me to get a job. Since I was so familiar with the UPenn campus, it just seemed natural that I should work there too. Basically me and my friend Melissa would push this big old bin on wheels from high rise to high rise. They'd give us a list of the rooms that needed to be checked on and we were on our way. Had all the essentials we needed for cleaning the rooms and whatnot stuffed in that wheely bin. Here's where it gets interesting....it's amazing the things people leave behind. So we'd go into these rooms the summer semester students were using and run through the list. Making notes about damage to the room, cleaning it up, taking the linens and dumping them in bags so they could be washed, and leaving clean linens behind. Some of the rooms weren't too bad. But other ones look like someone had a rave the night before. College kids are nasty! And they would leave behind things that were either cool, broken or just oh-my-god-you're-seven-types-of-nasty. Rich kids don't care what condition the things they leave behind are in, they can just replace them  the next day. So we've seen lamps, radios, dishes, clothes, shoes, books, used condoms. All types of random things left behind. I only worked during the summer because my mom was worried about me keeping my grades up. But I worked there two summers in a row. It was a fun, interesting job to say the least. But it made me thankful for the things I had, and made me want to work harder for the things I wanted.


(No clue what the name is for this art piece so mom and I called it The Dueling Tampons)

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

September 11, 2012

Today marks the 11 year anniversary of one of the biggest atrocities ever committed on U.S. soil. It started as a bright, beautiful day just like any other. On that Tuesday morning we all started our lives just as we had before every other day. Children went to school, adults went to work, and life as we knew it didn't seem any different. At 8:46am American Airlines Flight 11 crashed into the North Tower of the World Trade Center in New York City. As smoke billowed from the building time seemed to stop as we all tried to figure out what had just happened. At 9:03am the South Tower of the World Trade Center was rocked when United Airlines Flight 175 crashed into it. Utter chaos took over as we continued to try to come to grips and figure out what was happening. Before the second plane hit we all figured a bomb had exploded, what else would cause such damage. It wasn't until the second plane hit that we started to realize what caused the damage to the Twin Towers. That shock turned to fear when we saw the second plane cruise right into the South Tower. It had been aimed at that tower and we were under attack.

First you start to think that this attack was limited to the towers in NY, until the third plane crashed. At 9:37am American Airlines Flight 77 crashed into the Pentagon. Now we were being attacked in NY and Washington, D.C. What was going on? Why were these planes crashing? Are they just attacking NY and D.C.? What is happening to our country? The final crash occurred at 10:03am when United Airlines Flight 93 crashed into a field in Shanksville, PA. Not since the attack on Pearl Harbor has the United States been at such a high level of fear, terror, sadness and confusion.

At the time I was a tour guide in Philadelphia. I drove a horse and carriage through the historic section of town known as Old City. I loved my job. Meeting new people, sharing my knowledge with them, and getting to work with a horse. Life was great. When the first tower was hit I was out behind our stable with a co-worker and we were grooming our horses and getting them ready for another day of work. One of our friends ran over to us and started freaking out because, as he said, the Twin Towers had been bombed. We dropped everything (thankfully our horses were tied up) and ran inside to crowd around the little TV set in the stable. Another friend of ours came running in and the four of us huddled around that TV and watched, like so many others, as the attacks continued. I don't know how much time passed between the second crash and us finding the will to speak again, but it felt like hours. None of us wanted to go anywhere, we thought it was best to stay in front of the TV and find out what was going on. Not too long after the Pentagon was hit we received a phone call from the Park Service telling us not to work today. We thought it was because of the plane crashes, but it was actually because they received a bomb threat near the Liberty Bell. When they said bomb threat our minds were made up, we weren't working that day. It wasn't just because we were scared and confused by the plane crashes, it was because our lives were now in danger. You see, we all parked our carriages on the streets that run between the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall. To this day I don't know if they found anything near the Liberty Bell. But at the time, the threat was credible enough to make us all believe our lives were in danger.

So we just sat there and watched and wondered. Smoke billowing from the Towers, smoke billowing from the Pentagon. And then time stopped. At 9:59am the South Tower crumbled and collapsed onto the streets below. We screamed and gasped out of shock and fear, and huddled together and cried over the lives that had just been lost. We were reeling from the shock of watching hundreds or thousands of people die right before our eyes. News of the plane crash in PA made these attacks feel much too close to home. At 10:28am the North Tower collapsed from the structural damage and fires raging inside. All we could do was sit there and feel helpless. There was nothing we could do, nothing we could say.  I don't remember when our boss told us to go home, but we all shuffled out into the daylight stunned and terrified. Took me a while to be able to think. My friend told me I could come stay at her place for a while, and I told her I needed to call my mom. At the time my mom worked in one of the high rise buildings on the University of Pennsylvania's campus. Academic Housing. I was afraid for her because she was in a high rise building. I needed to talk to her, needed to know she was okay, needed her to know I was okay. I didn't get to see or talk to her for a few hours because all the phone circuits were a mess. I remember going home and drifting between shock, confusion, sadness and anger.  You never think something like this will happen during your lifetime. The sad fact is that this could happen again. There are people in this world who are so filled with hate that they think slaughtering innocent people is what their god wants them to do. Women, children, elderly, disabled....it doesn't matter who gets in their way. If they hate your country enough they will kill you for being a citizen.

I remember when I was growing up asking my mom what it was like when she was younger. She lived through the roughest times in American history. The 1960's. I would always look at her with this mix of sadness and confusion when she would tell me stories about how she was treated. It was hard enough to be black in the 60's, even harder if you were light-skinned black like she was. She told me about the sadness of losing Martin Luther King Jr. She told me how hard it was to be a Texan after John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, TX. Most of all she told me how she didn't want me to have to live in fear of what hatred would cause other people to do. When I finally got home and saw my mom we hugged for a while and didn't really talk much. I remember her looking at me with this sadness in her eyes. My grandfather had the attack on Pearl Harbor as a scar on his heart. My mom had the assassinations of Martin Luther King Jr., John F. Kennedy and Robert F. Kennedy as a scar on her heart. Now I had Columbine and 9/11 as a scar on my heart.


Check out some posts from my fellow bloggers:


How Children Remember 9/11


Scruffy, Messy and Dirty


Monday, September 10, 2012

A Quick Hello :-D

So I found this little guy in the middle console of my boyfriend's car. I'm assuming he was a prize from a machines his son won. Anywhoo, he's mine now. Say hello to everyone Emperor Wigglehands!

Mehhh!






Saturday, September 8, 2012

My Favorite Things

"Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens
Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens
Brown paper packages tied up with strings
These are a few of my favorite thing"


Thank you Julie Andrews and Disney for getting this song from The Sound of Music stuck in my head


It's funny how as you get older somehow you end up sounding exactly like you swore you'd never sound when you were a kid. Remember how when you were little you'd hear older people saying things like "When I was your age".....and you swore up and down you were never, EVER going to say that when you got older. Hahahahaha we were so naive! Because you and I both know we've used that phrase not once...not twice....but several times. BECAUSE IT'S TRUE! There is always some way for one generation to compare themselves to the generation coming up behind them, and the one after that. The Baby Boomers and Generation X (1950s to late 1970s) had the 60's, Women's Rights Revolution, Civil Rights, The Moon Landing, the greatest music ever created and the beginning of technological advances. Generation Y (1980s to 2000) had the Reagan Era, Sally Ride, Nintendo, the second best period of music, and the best cartoons (Thundercats Ho! and who was more outrageous than Jem).


When I was a kid I constantly heard Baby Boomers and Gen-Xers talking about how they didn't have the crazy things kids my age had. VCRs, tape decks and the coolest thing of all at that time Nintendo. "When I was your age we didn't have fancy toys like you do. We played stickball and walked 5 miles to school, uphill both ways." You wave it off and think What do these old people know." Then you get older and you look at the things kids have access to now and you think "When I was your age we didn't have Facebook, Twitter, iPods, iPads, Xbox Kinect or Wiis." Damn I feel old saying that. But you get nostalgic about the good old days and reminisce about the great things you had, and appreciate the things you have now. So I wanted to make a short list of My Favorite Things: Then and Now.To keep this from getting ridiculously out of hand I'll do a top 3 for each section. Gadgets/Toys, Movies, TV Shows and Songs. And I'd love to hear from you what your favorite things are. So here goes......


GADGETS/TOYS THEN:


Easy Bake Oven

I was completely in awe of the fact that I could make my own tiny little cakes. Nevermind the fact that you were using a lightbulb to heat these things up. And the fact that they didn't taste the greatest either. None of that matter because I thought I was the best chef in the world. My mom was nice enough to smile and choke down those awful things while managing to make me think I was doing a good job. Stomaching your child's awful attempts at baking....that's unconditional love right there.

Snoopy Sno Cone Machine


So let me get this straight.....if I want a sno cone and it's the middle of winter I can just make it myself. The Ice Cream Man only came around during spring and summer. So if I really wanted a sno cone and mom was too busy to go to the store, I could just make it myself. SWEEETTT!


Cabbage Patch Doll


Before there was a Tickle Me Elmo craze there was the Cabbage Patch Doll. When I look at them now I can't understand why in the hell we wanted them so bad because those things are far from cute. But when they came out every little girl asked Santa to put one under the tree for her. And I was no exception.


GADGETS NOW:


HTC HD7 Windows Phone


Most people know that my favorite color is pink. So when I got this phone one of the two things that sold me on it was the fact that I could make the tiles on my home screen pink. AWESOME! I also like that I can move said tiles around and place them however it suites my needs. Having Microsoft Office on there helps too, I barely use it but it's nice to have in case I get ideas for a paper while I'm traveling. Besides all the sweet apps it's the personalization part I like the most.


Laptop


No need to be chained to a desk anymore now that I have a laptop. Plane, train, automobile....my laptop goes everywhere with me. Thanks to many places adding outlets in their locations a lot of places are becoming laptop friendly. But it's convenient to be able to pick this thing up and pull it out whenever I need to do something. Instead of being forced to only work on things when I'm at home.


DVR


No more worrying about missing a show! Just set your DVR to record and away we go. Single shows, movies, TV series...whatever. If you want it you can store it on your DVR and watch as many times as your heart desires. Unlike when I was a teen and used to wait patiently with a blank VCR tape ready and my finger on the Record button. Now I don't have to be in the room or even have that channel on. VCRs forced you to make sure your TV was set to the right channel. It sucked to remember after the fact that your show was on channel 10 not channel 6, because then...well you missed it.


MOVIES THEN:


E.T.


This was the first movie I saw so it holds a special place in my heart. I wasn't even 1 years old yet when this movie was released so I think my mom waited until it came out on video. To this day every time E.T. gets sick I still cry like a baby.


The Princess Bride


"My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die!" At the time I was still a big fan of wrestling so seeing Andre the Giant in that movie was a thrill for me. But on top of that it was sweet and hi-larious. One of my favorite movies because it wasn't slapstick or over the top comedy.


Nightmare on Elm Street


No matter how old I get I'll always be terrified of Freddy Krueger. Why? Because he's the only horror monster you can't run away from since he's in your dreams. When I was finally old enough for my mom to let me watch it I ended up sleeping with the lights on for a while. That song those little girls sing still creeps me out.


MOVIES NOW:


Braveheart


For those of you who haven't seen this movie I won't be one of "those people" who spills the beans on how it ends. All I have to say is FREEDOMMMMM! That is love right there. Not just love between a man and a woman, but love for your country to go through all of that.


The Help


If you haven't seen this movie yet you are seriously slacking. It's not a chick flick, it's an everyone flick. One of the best movies I've ever seen. You really feel for what these ladies had to go through to make a living, and how hard it was to survive in the 60s. It makes you grateful that things aren't the same as it was. We still have a ways to go, but I am so glad I didn't have to live through the 60s.


Bridesmaids


Best. Comedy. EVER! I've loved Melissa McCarthy from back when she was on Gilmore Girls. But to see her hold her own in this movie was awesome. My face and sides were killing me from laughing so much. I had to remind myself to breathe while I was laughing so hard.


TV THEN:


The Cosby Show


So Bill Cosby and I have a connection. Not like a "hey I've met him or grew up near him" kind of connection...but a "you're from my area" connection. We're both from Philadelphia. So to see him portrayed as a successful doctor married to a successful lawyer was great. The fact that they didn't come off as the perfect family was even better. It showed that no matter how much money you have, there are still issues in every household. So it was nice to see that.


Full House


Back when there was something called TGIF I looked forward to this show a lot. I could be in the other room and as soon as I heard the theme song I skidded into the living room. Have to admit I had a crush on John Stamos so that's why I started watching. But it was kinda funny.


Tales From the Crypt


When this show first started I wasn't allowed to stay up late enough to watch it. So I'd sneak down after my mom was asleep and keep the volume down just low enough for me to hear but not wake her up. I thought I was sooo slick. Yeah, mom caught on to my tricks. Eventually she caved and let me stay up to watch the show as long as there were no complaints about me getting up in the morning. So not only was it cool that I got to stay up late (Ooooooo), but the Cryptkeeper had this wicked sense of humor I picked up on. I think that's when I realized I had a sick sense of humor and was beyond politically incorrect.


TV NOW:


NCIS


My grandfather and my boyfriend both served in the Navy, so when I heard about a show dedicated to Navy cops I just had to watch. And then I met Leroy Jethro Gibbs, the silver haired fox, and fell in love with him and his entire team.


The Walking Dead


Laugh all you want this is a how-to guide for surviving the zombie apocalypse. It's also a really good show that manages to keep a great story going in the middle of fighting zombies.


Boardwalk Empire & Game of Thrones


If you haven't seen either of these shows you should. I had a hard time picking between them because they're both sooo good. But again, great storyline with the right amount of violence and naughtiness.


SONGS THEN:


Thriller by Michael Jackson


The first time I heard Vincent Price's laugh I jumped up and stopped the record. Damn I miss listening to music on vinyl. That laugh creeped me out and would haunt my dreams. So for a while I would always get up and stop the song right before that point. Then the video came out and I eventually got over it and tried to do the zombie dance. I now blame my fascination with zombies on this song, it's all MJ's fault.


Girls Just Want To Have Fun by Cyndi Lauper


Bubbly, fun. The right kind of song to put on when you wanted to be silly and dance around the room. Like any other 80's girl I loved Madonna too, but I loved Cyndi Lauper more.


Walk Like An Egyptian  by The Bangles


I loved the beat and the dance that went with this song. Another one of those fun songs that made you want to get up and dance.


SONGS NOW:


Won't Back Down by Eminem


This is my anthem for when things feel like they're piling on and the anxiety is trying to get the best of me. For those days when I've dealt with people's bad attitudes and I'm completely fed up. This is that song that reminds me to keep going and pushing for what I want. Ignore the assholes and keep fighting. Never say quit.


Belief by John Mayer


I love the message behind this song. Just sit and listen to the song with the lyrics in front of you and it does make a lot of sense. John Mayer has a way with words.


Put You In A Song by Keith Urban


One of my favorite love songs.


For More Like This-----> When I Was Your Age 


One Day You'll Realize I'm Right

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Bedtime Ritual

I'm one of those people who finds amusement in the most random things. I still love a good Disney movie. I have no problem discussing the reasons why it's bad to take Barbie's shoes off (once they're off those things are a lost cause). My friends say I'm an smart-ass with a dirty, messed up sense of humor. As my boyfriend likes to say, I'm very random. Conversations start off in a normal direction, and then somehow there's a u-turn and you end up speeding through the grass until you find Random Road. I don't mean random, nonsensical stuff, just random topics. So of course bedtime is no different. No clue why I started doing this, but a couple nights a week after the lights are out and we're settled into bed I ask a random question.

Me: Can I have a bear for Christmas? Not one of those big ones but a cute little cuddly one.

Mark: *sigh* Go to bed.

Next night.....

Me: Can I have a Clydesdale for Christmas?

Mark: *sigh* Goodnight.

Next night.......

Me: Can I have a dolphin for my birthday?

Mark: Oh my God go to bed Dee!

The week before that I think I asked for a tiger. At some point I'll probably stop before "kind of cute and slightly annoying" turns into "shut up before I put duct tape over your mouth." There's a fine line between cute and sleeping with duct tape.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

September

This is the first time since 2003 I've had a reason to look forward to September. My mom died on Sept. 29, 2003 so I've had a hate/hate relationship with the month ever since. She had been battling lung cancer for about a year. At one point when she was in the hospital it looked like she was getting well enough to come home. I started prepping the house to bring her home and when I went in the next day they told me she was getting worse. No one really explained the process to me so I spent a long time being confused. Even when I went in to see her when she died it just didn't click. I thought she was asleep. I think somewhere in the back of my mind I kind of understood she was gone. But my heart hadn't caught up, so I was confused and lost. I only remember bits and pieces of the days after she died. Visiting the funeral home, picking out her coffin, finding clothes for her to wear, flower arrangements. Thankfully my mom had thought of all of this and prepared everything for me. Along with her will was a list of what she wanted me to do for her when she died. There are no words to describe how much that meant to me. Knowing she took the time to take the burden off my shoulders of making those decisions. It was her final act of taking care of her baby girl.

I used to get this pit of sadness and anger inside. Sometime during the next year I came across a song that would spend a lot of time on repeat. Wake Me Up When September Ends by Green Day. Don't remember how it started, think the video was on in the background and I wasn't paying attention or the song was on the radio. One of the two. Whatever the case, it went from background music to becoming one of my personal anthems. Course I didn't care about what the video for the song was about. It was the title that stuck in my head. That's how I felt. I didn't want to deal with September at all. I have music for just about every mood I'm in, it helps sometimes, music has always been my default way to get through or deal with something. It's my outlet. After mom died I don't remember how long it took before I actively listened to something that wasn't a melancholy or angry song. There would be songs on at the bar but I always looked for the rock music in the jukebox. Anything with a howling guitar in the background. It was the only music my heart wanted.

 

At some point I had two songs that were my go-to songs for those moods I just couldn't shake. When I was somewhere between feeling lost, betrayed, depressed and alone. Wake Me Up When September Ends, and Dare You To Move by Switchfoot. I would put those songs on and curl up and cry my eyes out. Dare You To Move ended up becoming a personal challenge after a couple years. I found the lyrics and had them playing with the song while I cried and something clicked in me. I started trying to listen to the song without breaking down into a mass of sadness and grief. Eventually it got to the point where I could sing-a-long without needing a box of tissues on standby. There were times when I got sad for no reason. My thoughts just drifted off and I would have flashbacks. Of my mom in her hospital bed, talking to her after she slipped into a coma state, kissing her forehead after she died, walking up to her coffin and watching them bury her with my grandfather. So these songs after a while they became a way to reconnect with my inner strength. I had to find a way to get up and keep moving even when I didn't want to.

 

So these songs, were and are a big deal to me. For close to 8 years I dreaded September. Until I met my boyfriend. I had told him everything about me, and vice versa. I think the fact that we both went through a traumatic loss made it easier to understand where the other one was coming from. His father died when he was young, so he understood how devastating losing my mom was to me. And I told him about how much I hated September, and he promised me that I wouldn't be alone in my grief anymore. He would find a way to give me a reason to smile in September. He has. Tomorrow, September 5th, will be our one year anniversary. I know he meant something else along the lines of marriage or a baby. But for me, this is enough, anything else is extra reasons to be happy. So for the first time since 2003 I have a reason to smile this September. And I don't hate September anymore.