Thursday, February 17, 2011


I have a passion for decorating!  When other little girls were always playing dolls, I was rearranging furniture and accessories in my parents house.  Back in the 1960's when I wasn't even aware of certain "styles" I would take my bedroom from traditional to more modern to even country.  At the age of about ten, I found an old quilt my mother had in a closet that had beautiful colors and fabrics in it, tossed it on the outside of the bed instead of under the bedspread and accessorized my room with baskets and some of my mom's antiques.  Saying all this,  I do not profess to be an expert.  I did study Interior Design at LA Tech University but have never been a member of a professional design organization.  I do it because it is a passion, and I think that every home should be a haven.  Having said all of this and knowing that I have never been asked to write a book or magazine article on decorating, it is on my bucket list so here it goes.  I would entitle my article, "The Top Five Decorating Styles To Avoid."  Decorating style #1---Dr. Seuss!  Yes, I said that.  It is hard to imagine having to tell someone that this look is not attractive for the real life home but there are those {few though they may be} that go for the look!  Now I am not talking about a brightly colored child's room in simple shapes and happy colors.  I am talking about the whole frickin house looking like it came out of "The Grinch Who Stole Christmas." Some woman built a house exactly like the "Simpson's."  She even had things professionally painted because she couldn't find {there is a reason for this dearie!} neon looking appliances in every different color!  Decorating style to be avoided #2--Cracker Barrell on steroids!  If you like cows, you don't have to have 150 of them in the bathroom!  A yardstick stuck into a padded heart with the words "Grandma's paddle" written on it might be good for a laugh but take it out of the closet to get your laugh.  Don't hang it over the center of the couch and accentuate it by hanging family pictures all around.  Style to avoid #3---1930's depression era!  I'm not talking about antiques here.  But there needs to be a guideline on old furniture.  Antiques can either be expensive with lots of history or a piece that has been in the family for years and is just lovely, sentimental, and old.  But it is a beautiful piece of furniture, made well and lovingly, and with a patina of age. Side note here.  I don't own any really expensive antiques--although I did once inquire about a desk that I thought was lovely at an antique store.  I was told the price was $10,000.00.  After I recovered from my faint and knocking my head on the corner of a $12,000.00 table, I asked the lady which former president had used this particular desk!  I wouldn't pay $10,000.00 for a desk if God himself had used it to map out the parting of the Red Sea! Old furniture is well-- old furniture.  My definition for old furniture would be a piece of cheaply made furniture that wasn't even pretty when it was made years ago and  that has somehow lasted until the present.  That being said there may be a piece that fits that description that has a very special memory associated with it.  Then I would say keep it, love it, and cherish it. You just don't want your whole house like this! One of my favorite pieces in my house is a gorgeous secretary of the most beautiful warm wood, with inlaid burl patterns and an intricate wood design on the doors with the glass.  It is even signed on the back with an italian name in carpenters pencil.  My price--$80.00 at a yard sale that I found while driving through a neighborhood!  Man those breaks on my van are good!  Decorating style #4-- I call caveman modern.  To me it looks like an empty house that the people haven't moved into yet.  Although I suspect that some of the "lofts" in NYC that cater to this look have another reason for no furniture.  It's much cooler to say that you prefer a minimalist look that to say, "We paid out the wazoo so much for this penthouse apartment that we cannot afford furniture until 2026."  Cavemen didn't have a lot of furniture {oh great, now I'm an authority on cavemen!} because so much hadn't been invented.  With the wonderful plush sofas that we have today, why would you want a single lucite bench in a room to sit on?  Doesn't make sense to me!  And my final decorating style that I don't recommend is what I call HOARDER CHIC.  There is an entire series on television devoted to these people so the style must be more common that we think. Some advice sweetie! If you blew your nose on a tissue at your senior prom in 1948--this little item doesn't need to be bronzed!  Your child's first poopie diaper may be a miracle to you but not worthy of a shadow box on the wall.  Macaroni and cheese on a plate in your sink from 62 days ago that is now growing fungi is of no use to you unless you are a bacteriologist! Cat feces is well CAT FECES and should be thrown away!  By the way of a side note---I didn't know how to spell feces so I googled it.  Guess what came up.  {Identify Animal Feces {picture}-Kitchen Table Form-Garden Web.}  Some day if I am deposited alone on another planet with only a lucite bench, a laptop computer and the internet, I might actually be bored enough to check that site out!  Happy decorating and may your home always be your haven! 

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

People Who Inspire Me.

I have officially regained talking privileges now that I am overcoming my insomnia.  Did you know that when you are sleep deprived that little voice in your head that tells you your shouldn't say something because it is inappropriate is shut down.  I DO!  I was recently asked about people who inspire me, and I had to admit it isn't who you'd think.  I'm not into reality stars, movie stars, politicians, sexiest men alive etc.  No, the people that inspire me are ordinary people.  I admire those that live their life that they've been dealt with all the gusto they can.  A lot of times it hasn't been easy, but they have persevered and changed their part of the world one person at a time.  I admire the neighbor who is always at every one's door with homemade soup when their family is sick even though everyone knows she herself suffers from Arthritus. The person who always lets cars waiting to get in the lane in even when they themselves have been waiting forever to get to the light.  The mother who although she is ready to drop from exhaustion can still read her child another story before bedtime. The person who sits by their loved one's side as they linger on with some dreaded disease knowing that there will be time for sleep later but the moments left on this earth with their precious angel are running out.  I admire the woman that has given her life to her family only to find herself single again with no skills and the rest of her life ahead of her and goes back to college sitting in a class with people half her age to finally fulfill her dreams.  I admire all of those who did what others said couldn't be done no matter the hardship.  I admire that check out person who always has a smile and a cheerful word for others even though she has a minimum paying job and a hard life.  There is the single mother who picks herself up, dusts herself off, and goes on to raise an incredible child on her own when others can't seem to do it with a whole villiage.  The soldier that gives up everything that they know and love to go far away to a strange land where they are not wanted to fight for a faceless crowd of people back home that often aren't even appreciative for their sacrifices.  In short, it's not what happens to us in this life but how we react to what happens to us.  My prayer for all of us is that we can be a little more extraordinary at being ordinary people!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The most stupid question ever asked?

OK, I admit that I am not usually on the receiving end of a stupid question {see former blogs.}  However, I had to have heard the most ridiculous question that ever came out of someone's mouth today on the phone.  I've taken medicine for 3 years to help me sleep and about a month ago, it quit working.  Since last Friday, I have been trying to get in touch with my doctor to get a new prescription so that I just might hopefully be able to get some sleep.  We leave town tomorrow for our grand-daughter Rosie's 4th birthday party in TN, and no one in their right mind wants to be around a grumpy grandma at Chuck E Cheeses!  So, since I can't get in touch with my doctor--another doctor in the same practice calls me.  Basically, she says that there are 2 different medicines she can change my prescription to and that both do the same thing only have different side effects.  Get this!  She asked me if I would prefer medicine #1 that is expensive and causes weight gain or medicine #2 that is cheap and doesn't cause weight gain.  There it is!! !!!!!! Where is the reality TV show with the $10,000.00 prize for the most stupid question ever asked?  That would win it for sure!  I had to call my husband when I got off the phone to share this little bit of information {that by the way someone went to med school for 8 years to be able to ask  their patient!"  Why even my husband who professes to know about as much about women as a caveman does about the internet had to laugh."  I myself, don't even KNOW any women that want to GAIN weight, and if I did in my current state of sleep deprivation, I would probably walk right up to them and slap their skinny face!  What I wanted to say to the doctor was "Oh, hum, let me see now, I believe I'll take the one that makes you put on weight without  getting to enjoy a steady diet of M & M's, banana pudding and Chunky Monkey Ice Cream for a month thank you very much!"  And there is nothing that I like more than paying more for the same thing I can get for less.  I'm already use to running out of my allowance before I can get the next one anyway. Why change things! Just think of all of the brain activity that it would save me if I were trying to decide between the cute little red shoes or the cute little blue shoes, and I didn't have to make that choice.  I could just say,"Oh yeah, I forgot.  I don't have to choose because I can't afford either pair, since I just paid out the wazoo for medicine #1.  But I didn't say that, and I never would!  Southern girls don't do that.  I'm just thankful that there is a prescription being picked up by my sweet little hubby on his way home that hopefully will let me enjoy the delightful joys of la-la land.  I might even dream about all of those cute little shoes I can buy with all of the money I saved on my prescription!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Laughing Gas!

I just spent 2 hours at the dentist on laughing gas and in my head wrote the most hilarious post ever.  Unfortunately, I can't remember a dad gum bit of it!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

What were they thinking?????

You ever just scratch your head and think "What were they thinking?"  Let me set the stage for you.  It is 3 year old precious little Jocelyn's birthday.  Jocelyn, like your normal three year old wants to be a princess.  Enter a large clubhouse, lots of decorations, about 100 guests, a three tiered princess cake and beautifully set tables.  Jocelyn is so excited she is asking all day, "when does the party start mama, when does the party start daddy?"  OK, your with me up to this point right?  Here's where things get a little crazy and a whole lot of unsouthern-like {Is that a word?} Oh well, you know what I mean.  All us southern women know how to throw a great party.  We have the gracious party chromosome.  {They haven't exactly identified it yet, but I am sure they are getting close!} We love to entertain and to gather a wonderful assortment of lovely friends.  A southern girl will have the best food, wonderful atmosphere, clean house and even candles lit and music playing in the back ground for the perfect time.  She'll also greet her guests at the door looking like she hasn't done a thing all day but go to the spa and have her nails done.  She looks forward to serving and welcoming each of her guests.  This party is for them.  She wants them to leave relaxed and full of contentment after a wonderful evening of fellowship and celebration.  Am I right here?  OK, back to our story.  The party is for Jocelyn's birthday right?  IT'S ALL ABOUT JOCELYN!  Mom and dad are there to celebrate sweet little Jocelyn's big day.  Here is where we start to blend a recipe for disaster.  In comes mama's boyfriend--yep that's what I said mama's boyfriend!  To this lovely little mixture we're gonna add enough liquor to have supplied the entire country during prohibition!  {It's looking like quite the evening right?}  For some reason that I just can't for the life of me figure out, the daddy and the boyfriend get into it.  A fight starts that includes all of the 99 proof guests and a beer bottle throwing contest. Seven police departments {yea, that's right 7 police departments} have to be called in and hospital ambulances arrive to take 5 to the hospital where one requires surgery {probably the boyfriend as the father has tried to remove his right eyeball with the broken part of a Boone's Farm Strawberry Hill bottle.}  I saw pictures of the "clubhouse" after the party on TV.  World War III took place in there!  All I have to say is that we can all breathe a collective sigh of relief that this little "social event of the season" took place in the great state of Ohio.  I'd like to get a hold on a couple of parents and a boyfriend!  I'd also like to get my hands on a group of guests.  Lastly,  I'd like to get my hands on little Jocelyn--my arms that is-- around her as tight and loving as I could, and tell her I am so sorry that she showed more sense and better manners than her guests and her parents.  At the end of the party, the camera pans around the room showing drink, food, trash, broken bottles, blood, and finally a pretty pink 3 tiered princess birthday cake that wasn't even touched!  Need I say more?

Monday, September 13, 2010

Lucy goes camping!

I've blogged about camping before.  I hate it!  My idea of roughing it is an old Holiday Inn.  But Labor Day falls around my sweet husband's birthday--Sept. 5th so I go to make him happy {or wait, I may be making him miserable!}  Anyway, we went to Smith Mountain Lake in Roanoke, Virginia.  I feel when I am being tortured that something fun should be thrown in for good measure!  So, we were camping!  I had to "have me some Stein-Mart!  My son-in-law very patiently puts in the info of Stein-Mart into his GPS which he swears by, and I hate because it is a piece of technology which means that I am doomed before I start!  I set out going down the road.  Everything is going fine.  IN 4 TENTHS OF A MILE, TURN RIGHT ON CROWLEY GAP ROAD.  I turn and find myself on a one lane country road that is at least black-topped.  I think that this road must never be used or it would at least have 2 lanes. Another 1/2 mile down the road it is no longer black topped but gravel.  Another quarter of a mile it begins going straight up.  Within 100 yards, it is not only going straight up but has 1 1/2 foot washed out trenches.  Because I am as determined to get to Stein-Mart as an ugly old maid is to get down the wedding aisle, I keep going.  All of a sudden the van will not climb the hill.  It is too steep.  I start to back up a little to get a running start so to speak and the van begins to slide down the mountain sideways.  I put on the break just as the rear end of my vehicle starts to slam into the 12 foot sides of the mountain.  I try to go forward again and start spinning.  Here I am stuck side ways on a God forsaken excuse for a road with nothing and no one anywhere.  I put on my emergency break to steady the van on the side of the hill, promptly open the driver's door and fall into a 1 1/2  foot hole.  As I am scrambling out, I look down at my very impractical little black and white strapped sandals on my feet.  My husband always says that I should wear more practical shoes.  Well, they were VERY practical for going to Stein-Mart, as I had no intention at the beginning of my day of climbing Mt. Everest!  I think for a split second that I will once and for all buy some practical shoes!  Thank goodness I return to my senses within a short period of time and decide not to go to extremes or anything just because I got caught out on a mountainside in a cute little pair of shoes with kitten heels!  I call our oldest daughter on the cell phone as my mind has gone blank and I can't remember my husbands new cell phone number.  She says she will call the guys and then after learning my location, she and her friend set out to find me also.  I decide to do what any other woman that has found herself in this very scary situation would do.  I go and find a place to hide in the woods.  I go over the side of the cliff and sit quietly in an area where I can't be seen from the road.  I am imagining that every pervert on the east coast got up that morning and decided to hike Crowley Gap Mountain!  As I am sitting there, I see the heel of a shoe sticking out of the side of the mountain.  I check to see if there is a bone in it!  I suppose that is what happened to the last nut that came up this road!  Shortly, I hear a truck, but I know that the guys haven't had time to get to me yet.  I sit there still as can be as a large truck stops, turns off the engine and I hear 2 or 3 male voices outside of the vehicle talking about how are they going to get out of here when the road is one lane and they can't back their truck up the mountain backwards.  I begin to tremble and shake.  The cell phone rings.  It is Ben saying they are almost there.  I whisper to him that there are men there, and I am hiding from them.  My husband tells me that they are probably there to help me.  No thanks, I will wait on someone I know and not the local Deliverance movie characters.  The phone rings again.  It's my daughter.  They are almost to me but stranded on the mountain and can't get any further.  I whisper, "please don't call me again.  I am hiding from some men and they will hear the phone ring."  Just then one of the men begins to walk toward me up the mountain.  I know that he can't see me unless he comes over the hillside of the road.  He's getting closer and closer and closer.  My heart is beating faster, and faster, and faster!  I turn around to look up and there he stands.  "Ma'am, are you alright?" "Yeah" I say.  "What are you doing ma'am?"  "I'm hiding."  "Who are you hiding from ma'am?"  "You" I say.  "Me! I'm just a best buy deliveryman, ma'am.  I wouldn't hurt a fly!"  I say I'm sorry.  I guess I watch too much CSI on television.  "Here, let me help you out of that hole ma'am."  As he is helping me climb out, we hear a truck.  "Someones coming."  "Is it a blue truck", I ask.  "Yes ma'am", he says.  "That will be my husband.  We all meet up at the sideways van on the road and all 5 men discuss how to get it down off the mountainside. The Best Buy men say that their GPS led them this way also and after a guess that the road hasn't been used in 4 years, we proceed to try to get both of our  vehicles down off the mountain. With much guidance, Ben is able to back my van down and then the delivery truck proceeds on down the rest of the way.  Ben has to get back to a job site in my van, so he has my son-in-law and his best friend John take me into town to the girls who have now been informed that I am safe and sound and have not been molested by any backwoods crazy man!  My family thinks this is all so freaking hilarious!  My son-in-law points out several items of note about the situation.  #1 He says never be afraid of men wearing "GEEK SQUAD" tee-shirts! I say everyone knows that perverts hide behind geek squad tee-shirts! #2  If a GPS tells you to go on a gravel road, something is wrong and you should go back! {Now that would have been a handy little piece of info to have BEFORE I started out.}  As we are going into town, we pass a large sign on the side of the road that says "Caution, Do not trust GPS in this area."  Another nice little piece of info to have had BEFORE I started out.  When we get to where the girls are located, my daughter meets me at the door with, "Well Lucy Ricardo, I hear you've been on another adventure!"  Everyone is laughing hysterically. I can't believe that my family is having so much fun out of this!  I am told that at my fist phone call, my 3 year old grandson Corben sighed and said, "Come on, let's go rescue Mimi" as if this is a 3 times a week occurrence.  It takes me 2 days of constant teasing by my family to get over my "terrifying"  experience.  I try to explain to the kids that I haven't been that scared since 1973 when I talked a friend of mine into picking up a hitch hiker in Little Rock, AR.  They ask me if I have learned a lesson about going shopping when I am suppose to be camping.  Yes, I say.  Never trust a GPS--get your directions to the local Stein-Mart from an old fashioned map!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

The Most Interesting Dull Man in the World!

I  love my husband.  I mean I LOVE my husband!  But to be honest with you, I call him the most interesting dull person that I have ever met.  His problem is with clothes and here are some examples.  I personally, like a lot of other wives, buy clothes for my husband.  I try to dress him nicely, professionally, and attractively.  His only thoughts on dressing are that the clothes must be khaki and comfortable. His idea of an outfit is Khakis and an old shirt.  In the late 1980's, I bought him an outfit for golfing of pale gray pants. and a pale gray and white striped golf shirt.  It was very smart looking. He said it was "flashy."  If they aren't khakis, they're flashy!  Recently the kids and I were looking over pictures from their childhood and we found one of him swinging the kids on the swing set.  The picture was 20 years old and the girls both said, "Oh my gosh dad, you still wear that shirt!" The girls went into his closet, grabbed up a lot of old stuff, brought it to me and said to give these to Goodwill {if they will take them} before their father knew what was going on. I thanked them because I had wanted to do that forever but hadn't had the heart to get rid of his favorite old clothes! I secretly wonder sometimes since I like clothes so much if people don't think that the reason he wears old stuff is that I spend all the money on my clothes.  When we go out we usually look like a dolled up drag queen on a date with an almost homeless person! You can guess who is who.  It's not that I don't buy him clothes!  I buy him things often, but they set in his closet if they aren't {you know what's coming--khakis--and his favorite "old" shirts.}  Once out of desperation once, I told him I absolutely HAD to have some variety in my life and we MUST have a little color and style in his wardrobe! Because I had said "variety in my life" he began to tease me about wanting another man, so he agreed to go shopping. I suggested conservatively {knowing his aversion to color} that we really go off the deep end and get him some navy blue Dockers!  You would have thought I was suggesting he live the remainder of his life in an underground 4x6 dirt hole!  Once when we were dating, we went to his house around 4:00 in the afternoon.  His mother was at the stove with pots on three burners cooking away.  He said, "Mom, I think I would like some golf shirts."  I kid you not, that woman turned off the burners on the stove, grabbed her purse, and said "Let's go!" She bought him 11 golf shirts that day. I marvelled at this!  I could only imagine walking into my mother's kitchen while she was preparing supper {or any other time for that matter}and casually mentioning that I would like some new shirts.  My mother wouldn't talk like this, but what comes to mind is our friend down the street when we were growing up.  Whenever she wanted something and she asked her mother for it, the reply was "people in Hell want ice water!"  It was absolutely beyond my comprehension a woman stopping what she was doing in the middle of supper and saying "Let's go!"  Recently, we had the two grand kids that live locally over to spend the night with Mimi and grandpa on a Friday night.  We took them out for supper, and Ben casually mentioned he needed a new sports coat for a presentation he had to  make in Denver, CO that week.  All plans for the grandchildren were put on hold and we drove straight to the department store!  Corben was saying, "Hey, why aren't we going to the park?"  Mimi said, "because your grandpa is in the mood to buy clothes and it happens about once every 5 years!"  I knew that I had to make the most of our every half decade trip, so while granddaughter Madilyn pulled 35 ties off the rack, I was pushing her around picking up one thing after another and asking Ben, "Do you like this?"  If he said yes, it was in the cart!  When we left the store we had his sports coat, shirts, a tie, 2 new pairs of shoes, and guess what--Hallelujah--navy Dockers! We're really living on the wild side now! I was so excited that you would have thought I had won a trip around the world! Noone could have known that navy Dockers would make my heart race so fast!  I was positively giddy.  As we carried our packages across the parking lot, I burst out laughing!  Ben, Corben, and Madi looked at me as if I had lost my mind!  {This happens with great frequency.}  Ben said, "What are you laughing about?"  I told him that I just had a thought of my dear, sweet mother-in-law in Heaven looking down with laughter and a high-five that I had managed to get her son into a department store and not only bought him what he wanted, but wound up getting him to buy even more!  She would have loved it!  Ben laughed too and said I had a point there.  I no longer marvel at a woman turning off the burners on the stove and leaving right then and there before he has had a chance to change his mind!